Actions

Work Header

Trasngressions

Chapter Text

TRANSGRESSIONS

EXT. CATHOLIC CHURCH - MORNING

Scully's car drives slowly past the church. Cars line both sides of the street, everything from BMW's to limousines.

INT. SCULLY'S CAR - CONTINUOUS

SCULLY is looking for a place to park. Finding nothing, she continues up the street, checking her watch. From her expression it is clear that she is late.

INT. FOYER - LATER

Scully enters the dim foyer. AN USHER intercepts her, wearing the appropriate church smile.

INT. SANCTUARY - MOMENTS LATER

The sanctuary is almost full to capacity. A man, NATHANIEL SHEPARD, in his mid-thirties, clean cut and handsome, stands behind the pulpit addressing the congregation.

NATHANIEL
Come to me all you who are heavy laden and I will give you rest...

Mulder is sitting in the last pew by the isle. He is listening intently. Under:

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
I have come that you may have life and have it to the full. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

The sanctuary door CREAKS and Mulder along with several others turn to look as Scully and the usher enter. Scully points to Mulder and the usher withdraws, closing the door. Under:

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
Ask and it will be given you, seek and you will find...

Under many disapproving looks Scully walks over to Mulder, who smiles at her discomfort.

MULDER
You're late.

SCULLY
Move over.

Mulder slides over and Scully sits down beside him. To her relief all eyes turn back to the stage. Where:

Nathaniel continues to recite scripture with elegant hand motions, eyes closed.

NATHANIEL
If you love me you will obey my commandments, than you will truly be my disciples...

SCULLY is becoming troubled as she listens to the spiel coming from the pulpit.

SCULLY
What are we doing here, Mulder?

MULDER
I thought you liked going to church.

NEW ANGLE

Several of the people who felt the need to show their disapproval at Scully's late arrival, put their fingers to their lips and make hushing sounds. Under:

SAMUEL (O.S.)
I am the first and the last. The Alpha and the Omega. I will supply all your needs..

SCULLY
(Whispering)
This isn't church. Who is that guy?

MULDER
(whispering)
Nathaniel Shepard.

SCULLY
(with disgust)
The psychic surgeon? You dragged me down here for this?

In her disdain Scully forgets to keep her voice down, once again drawing the "Looks". Mulder smiling slightly puts his finger to his lips. Scully gives him a look, drop dead.

Scully starts to rise. A woman, MARGARET, three rows down, stands up. Mulder puts his hand on Scully's arm and she reluctantly settles back into her seat.

MARGARET is pale and drawn. Her eyes sunken into a face etched with pain. She steadies herself on the back of the pew in front of her.

NEW ANGLE

All eyes turn to Margaret. Nathaniel likewise is watching her.

NATHANIEL
I see you have returned to us, Margaret. {To the congregation} Margaret left us. She went back to the world. Back to those who counted her as dead. They have failed her and now she returns, seeking forgiveness.

MARGARET
I'm dying.

NATHANIEL
Yes, I know.{Motioning with his hand} Come up here.

Margaret does come, each step a monumental effort. Her body shacking, claw like fingers gripping the backs of the pews. People watch with a mixture of curiosity and fear. No one reaches out to help her even when she falls and begins to drag herself along the floor. She collapses when she reaches the foot of the steps leading to the stage.

MARGARET
(tears running down her face)
Please, forgive me.

NATHANIEL
You're so close. Don't stop now.

Margaret crawls up the steps, weeping as she goes. At the top she collapses once again. If Nathaniel feels any compassion for the woman lying at his feet, he doesn't show it.

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
Do you want me to heal you, Margaret?

MARGARET
(weakly)
Yes, please...I don't want to die.

Two men, BRISCO and RICHARDS come and arrange Margaret's body in the center of the stage like a sacrifice.

NATHANIEL
Today you will all witness grace. Forgiveness for betrayal.

Nathaniel kneels beside Margaret. Terror comes into her eyes as he lays his hands on her abdomen. He presses downward and she screams. His hands seam to sink into her. Passing through cloth and flesh. Margaret continues to scream.
NATHANIEL his expression is that of demonic ecstasy. It is not clear if his intentions are to heal or to kill.

NEW ANGLE

Mulder is transfixed but Scully is no longer sure of what she is witnessing. She doesn't know weather to draw her gun or to walk out. So she remains where she is, watching as Margaret's screams echo off the high ceiling.
Nathaniel looks out over the sea of faces. His eyes lock with Scully's.

SCULLY momentarily entranced as she stares back at Nathaniel. She is both fascinated and repulsed. We hear a rushing sound like wind. There is a brief sense that time has stopped.

NEW ANGLE

The scene resumes as Nathaniel rises to his feet. In his hands is something bloody and unidentifiable. There is an almost synchronized gasp of horror from the congregation as Nathaniel paces the stage like a rock star, holding his gory prize aloft. Someone shouts Hallelujah and praises begin to reverberate through the crowd.

MARGARET is quiet, laying on her back, staring at the ceiling with wide unblinking eyes.

NEW ANGLE

A woman in front of Mulder and Scully faints, falling forward and hitting her head on the back of the pew. As the scene degenerates into a chorus of praises and the sound of bodies hitting the floor, Scully bolts for the door.

END TEASER

Chapter Text

ACT ONE

INT. CATOLIC CHURCH - DAY

As the service breaks up Mulder pushes his way to the podium intent on getting to Margaret, who is sitting on the stage looking dazed b.g. He is confronted by Brisco and Richards. They get in his face.

BRISCO
Where you headed? Doors the other way.

Brisco gives Mulder a shove to help him along. Mulder shoves back. Richards grabs his arm.

NATHANIEL (O.S.)
The man is a federal agent. Leave him alone.

Brisco steps back and Richards grudgingly unhands Mulder, who turns to see:

Nathaniel wiping hisbloody hands on a white towel.

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
How can I help you, Agent Mulder?

MULDER
I'd like to talk to Margaret.

Nathaniel shrugs. Mulder pushes past Brisco and Richards to the stage. Margaret doesn't look at him. There is blood on the front of her blouse.

MULDER (CONT'D)
Margaret, can you hear me?

NATHANIEL
(coming up)
Margaret, the FBI agent is concerned. Show him that you aren't hurt.

At the sound of Nathaniel's voice Margaret seams to wake up. She stares at Mulder wide eyed.

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
Show him Margaret.

Shakily, Margaret climbs to her feet. Mulder reaches out to steady her and she pulls away disdainfully. Than with equal disdain raises her blouse high enough to reveal:

HER ABDOMEN clean and unmarked.

NATHANIEL (CONT'D) (O.S.) (CONT'D)
Satisfied Agent Mulder?

NEW ANGLE

Margaret lets her blouse fall back into place.

MULDER
(to Margaret)
I'd like to ask you some questions.

Margaret looks at Nathaniel. He shakes his head no. Margaret mimics him like a marinate doll.

NATHANIEL
So many questions Agent Mulder. When you have found the answers to them all...

He leans close to Mulder, his voice a whisper.

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
...what then? Will you have peace, Fox?

EXT. CATOLIC CHURCH - FRONT STEPS - MOMENTS LATER

Scully is leaning against the railing, a troubled look on her face. She doesn't look up as Mulder exits.

MULDER
You OK?

SCULLY
No Mulder I'm not. What kind of a freak show was that?

MULDER
Physic surgery has been performed in the Philippines for hundreds of years. It is as widely excepted by native populations as modern medicine is here.

Scully shudders deeply effected by the experience. Mulder concerned puts his hand on her shoulder.

MULDER (CONT'D)
Scully?

SCULLY
How is the woman?

MULDER
She appears to be fine.

People are still filing out. Every face reflects the same shell shocked expression. No one smiles or speaks as they move slowly past Mulder and Scully.

MULDER (CONT'D)
(under his breath)
It's like night of the living dead.

Scully doesn't respond as she watches the procession in numb apprehension. We see Margaret, she gives Mulder a loathing glance as she passes. It is clear that she is no longer in pain.

INT. CATOLIC CHURCH - SANCTUARY - CONTINUOUS

The place is nearly empty. A young woman, ABBY PAGE, sits in the last pew across form the one Mulder and Scully had occupied. She looks shabby in this elegant place. Her clothes have a slept in appearance and her hair is unkempt. She sits with her head down. Her restless fingers slowly twist a small silver cross she wears around her neck. She is waiting.

INT. SANCTUARY - CONTINUOUS

We follow Abby out of the sanctuary into a hall way where she reacts to:

BRISCO (O.S.)
This is off limits.

Abby turns to see Brisco and Richards.

ABBY
I need to see Nathaniel Shepard.

BRISCO
Sorry, sister he doesn't take visitors.

ABBY
It's important.

BRISCO
Always is.

Richards takes Abby by the arm and shoulder, turning her around and pushing her against the wall.

RICHARDS
Put your hands on the wall.

Abby dose as she is told. Richards searches her.

RICHARDS (CONT'D)
No ID.

BRISCO
Who are you?

ABBY
(face to the wall, afraid)
Abby.

RICHARDS
What do we do with her?

BRISCO
(annoyed)
Show her out. What do you think? This is a church not the back ally.

Brisco's cell phone rings. He fishes it out of his pocket.

BRISCO (CONT'D)
Brisco.

Brisco listens briefly his eyes on Abby, then hits "end".

BRISCO (CONT'D)
Your lucky day. Mr. Shepard want's to see you.

INT. NATHANIEL'S OFFICE - MORNING

Nathaniel is sitting behind a large oak desk. Brisco and Richards enter with Abby between them. They escort her to a chair in front of the desk and help her into it.

NATHANIEL
Abby, Abby, you've been in town for three weeks, I was beginning to wonder if you would ever get up the nerve to talk to me...what's on your mind?

ABBY
Don't you know, Nate? I got your letter.

Nathaniel laughs, hard and bitter. Perhaps a little uneasily.

NATHANIEL
You're making something out of nothing, Abby. If you know what's good for you, go home. Leave me in peace.

ABBY
(shaking her head no)
I've been praying for you...

NATHANIEL
( Cutting her off, angry)
I KNOW YOU ARE! It's like a hot knife twisting in my gut. I've had enough of your self-righteousness.

ABBY
There's only one way out of this for you.

NATHANIEL
I have what I want. I don't care if it comes from Almighty God or the bowels of hell.

Abby cowers in her seat. Afraid to speak, afraid to breath. Satisfied, Nathaniel backs off.

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
(calmly)
Go home, Abby. Play you little religious game. Just forget you found me.

Abby is unresponsive, twisting the little cross. Nathaniel enraged hits the desk with his fist getting her attention.

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
I said go home, Abby! I give you three days.{Looking at Brisco and Richards}No one will touch you. Beyond that I can't guarantee your safety.

EXT. CATHOLIC CHURCH - FRONT STEPS - MOMENTS LATER

Mulder stands at the top of the steps watching Scully walk away. The doors open behind him and Abby stumbles out almost falling. Mulder turns and catches her. Abby tries to pull away her eyes looking past Mulder at:

The door slams and she looks back fearfully. Someone moves past the window, an indistinct form distorted by the stained glass. Mulder doesn't loosen his grip as Abby struggles a little harder.

MULDER
What happened?

ABBY
I'm fine, really.

This assertion brings the tears she has been trying to hold back. She looks down no longer trying to get away. Mulder watching the window still holds her arm.

MULDER
What happened?

ABBY (CONT'D)
Just a doctrinal dispute.

MULDER
(not buying it)
My name is Fox Mulder. What's yours?

ABBY
Abby Page.

MULDER
Could we talk for a minute, Abby?

Abby doesn't reply. Her attention is again on the window.

MULDER (CONT'D)
We can go somewhere else?

Abby seems to consent, happy enough to leave she allows Mulder to lead her down the steps.

MULDER (CONT'D)
My car is around the corner.

At the bottom Abby stops suddenly and leans against Mulder, throwing him off balance slightly.

ABBY
(quietly)
Be careful what you believe. Not every miracle is from God.

Mulder bends down to hear and Abby tries to twist out of his grasp, almost catching him by surprise. He struggles to maintain his hold as the girl fights him. TWO MEN approaching on the side walk shout at Mulder b.g.

MULDER
(to the men)
I'm a federal agent.

The men don't seam to hear him. They grab Mulder forcefully, giving Abby the opportunity she needs to break away.

She darts into the street, bringing angry shouts and honking horns.

MULDER (CONT'D)
(infuriated)
Get your hands off me, I'm a federal agent!

The men let go of him muttering apologies. Eager now just to remove themselves from the situation.

MULDER'S POV

We see Abby running down the opposite sidewalk and vanishing between two buildings.

NEW ANGLE

Mulder glances back at the church. Someone still watches from beyond the window. Mulder reaches up and rubs the back of his neck as the hair prickles.

ANGLE ON STAINED GLASS WINDOW

We can make out Nathaniel watching Mulder, solemnly.

INT. MULDER'S OFFICE - DAY

Mulder is standing over a light table examining several photographs.

CUE

The photos are of Nathaniel Shepard performing his secret art. None of the pictures are very clear as if they were taken in low light without a flash. The best one has been clipped from a tabloid, it shows a close up of Nathaniel's hands some how submerged in the abdominal cavity of a man. As with Margaret, passing right through his clothing. The caption reads. SECOND COMING AS PREDICTED IN SCRIPTURE.

NEW ANGLE

Mulder reacts to a knock on the door.

MULDER (O.S.)

Come in.

NEW ANGLE

Scully enters.

MULDER
Morning Scully. Have a look at this.

Scully walks over and looks at the photos. She isn't impressed.

SCULLY
I've seen better pictures of the Lock Ness monster.

MULDER
They were taken by a man named Peterson.

SCULLY
He's a lousy photographer.

MULDER
Maybe he could take some lessons, if he wasn't dead.

SCULLY gives him a credulous look.

MULDER (CONT'D)
Peterson was a free lancer who worked for a rag. According the paper Peterson went to Shepard looking for a miracle. I think he found one.

SCULLY
So why is he dead now?

MULDER
Can you endure some speculation?

Scully gives Mulder a pained look.

MULDER (CONT'D)
I think he was murdered because of these pictures.

SCULLY
How?

MULDER
He was rock climbing in Yellow Stone and fell three hundred feet...

SCULLY
It happens.

MULDER
It's the reason it happened.

SCULLY
Gravity?

MULDER
That coupled with something far more interesting. Peterson had been crippled in a sky diving accident two years ago. He was paralyzed from the waist down. There are more than a few questions as to how he managed to get three hundred feet up a rock face in the first place.

SCULLY
You think Shepard healed this man then what? Recalled the miracle at a point when Peterson was most vulnerable, thus causing his death?

MULDER
Exactly.

SCULLY
Would it surprise you if I said that is absurd?

MULDER
I would be surprised if you didn't.

SCULLY
Based on the assumption that Shepard did heal this man what would be the motive for killing him?

MULDER
Because of something he saw, perhaps the answer is in these pictures.

NEW ANGLE

Scully looking at the pictures, wishing she could come up with a valid reason to not pursue this.

SCULLY
When do we track down Bat Boy?

MULDER
You were at the church. You're a witness.

SCULLY
I don't know what I witnessed. Slight of hand. Smoke and mirrors.

MULDER
You seamed convinced yesterday.

SCULLY
(Defensively)
Nathaniel Shepard created an atmosphere that was designed to fool the senses. One of fear and confusion, thus paralyzing the rational mind and over stimulating the emotions and imagination. We saw exactly what he wanted us to see.

Mulder crosses to his desk, retrieves an small ice chest from beside it.

SCULLY (CONT'D)
(studying the dubious photos)
The FTC investigated hundreds of these cases back in the seventies. No evidence was found to substantiate the claims made by psychic surgeons. In fact several arrest were made on fraud charges.

Scully picks up the picture of Nathaniel, his hands disappearing into the man's belly. She makes a face.

SCULLY (CONT'D)
As for what we saw Nathaniel remove, the experts refer to it as a magic bullet. Pieces of clothe dipped in blood and in some cases animal organs, artfully palmed by the healer and produced at the right moment to create the illusion that actual surgery has taken place.

MULDER
Something like this maybe?

Scully turns to look at Mulder. He is holding up a plastic bag with something bloody in it.

SCULLY
Where did you get that?

MULDER
I did a little dumpster diving after church. But more to the point, where did Nathaniel Shepard get it?

Scully takes the bag from Mulder, examining it's contents with a critical eye.

SCULLY
It appears to be tumorous growth.

MULDER
That's precisely what I thought. I thought you might like to run it through the lab. Find out if it's Fido or human.

SCULLY
No, Mulder, I wouldn't.

Scully drops it back into the ice chest and slams the lid.

MULDER
Why not Scully? Aren't you the lest bit curious?

Scully doesn't answer.

MULDER (CONT'D)
You'er afraid this guy is the real thing aren't you?

SCULLY
(flaring up)
He's a fraud. A predator, preying on peoples hopes and fears for personal gain.

MULDER
Maybe we can stop him.

SCULLY
(still upset)
How? By validating his claims? By proving he does posses miraculous healing powers? That's what we are trying to do isn't it? He thinks he's Jesus Christ and the FBI is trying to verify it for him.

MULDER
(gently)
We're not out to convince anyone of the second coming. We're just looking for the truth.

Scully stares at Mulder for a moment. Than snatches the ice chest and brushes past him.

ANGLE ON DOOR

Slamming behind her.

EXT. APARTMENT BUILDING - LATER

Mulder pulls up to a run down apartment in a poor neighborhood.

INT. APARTMENT BUILDING - HALL WAY - MOMENTS LATER

Mulder steps off the elevator on the third floor. The hall way is dingy, littered with children's toys and trash. The sounds of an argument come from behind a door. Several young men are smoking by an open window. They regard Mulder suspiciously as he approaches.

MULDER
I was told Abigail Page lives in this building? Do any of you gentleman know her?

They look at him as if he is speaking Latin.

MULDER (CONT'D)
Abby Page. About 25. Five, five. {He holds his hand up} Short hair.

YOUNG MAN
Oh, you mean Mother Teresa. {He points down the hall} 210.

MULDER
Thanks.

We follow Mulder as he picks his way to 210.

YOUNG MAN
(shouting after Mulder)
Hey watch your back, man. She'll try to convert you!

Mulder knocks on the door. We hear movement form beyond it.

MULDER
(Calling)
Abby Page!

ABBY (O.S.)
Yes?

MULDER
My name is Fox Mulder. We met yesterday.

Silence.

MULDER (CONT'D)
I'm a federal agent, Abby.

The door opens a crack and Mulder holds up his badge.

INT. ABBY'S APARTMENT

We are in a small three room apartment consisting of a kitchenette, a bathroom, a bedroom, and the living room they are standing in. The place looks virtually uninhabited. The living room furniture consist of a coach, a coffee table and a reading lamp. The only personal items in evidence is a coat hanging by the door and the bible lying on the coffee table.

MULDER
Why did you run, Abby?

Abby shrugs, twisting the cross.

ABBY
I didn't want to talk to you.

MULDER
Is that still the case?

Abby glances at Mulder briefly.

MULDER (CONT'D)
If your afraid of Shepard, I can put you in protective custody. He won't be able to touch you.

ABBY
My life isn't in danger. Not from Nathaniel.

MULDER
I have reason to believe Shepard may have already killed one man.

Abby looks up at Mulder, considering his words Before:

ABBY
Bet that's tough to prove.

MULDER
What do you know about Shepard?

ABBY
What the tabloids print. He's the best thing since aspirin. What are you hoping to find, Agent Mulder?

MULDER
The truth.

ABBY
Haven't you heard? The truth is relevant.

Abby crosses to the window, leans her head against it, eyes closed.

MULDER
I don't believe that. I don't think you do either.

Abby glances at Mulder briefly, then closes her eyes again as if tired of the whole ordeal.

ABBY
Don't try to flatter, Coerce or intimidate me. I don't intend to cooperate.

MULDER
Why not? You have something to hide?

Abby catches her breath, opens her eyes and sees:

POV THROUGH WINDOW

A MAN is standing in the ally, looking up at her. Smiling

NEW ANGLE

Abby steps away from the window abruptly and Mulder unsnaps his holster as he moves to the wall. He glances out. Sees:

POV THROUGH WINDOW

The ally is now deserted.

NEW ANGLE

Mulder turns back to Abby. She is terrified. Wordlessly Abby walks to the door and opens it. She doesn't look at Mulder.

ABBY
If you want to ask any more questions you better get official.

Mulder rubs his neck unconsciously, reacting to the sensation as the hair raises.

MULDER
Why are you protecting Shepard? What are you afraid of?

ABBY
Is warrant still a word where you come from? Please leave.

Mulder moves to leave, then stops by the coffee table, gets a card out of his coat pocket.

MULDER
This is my number. If you change your mind, call me.

Mulder lays the card on the Bible and walks out past Abby.

INT. HALL WAY - BY ELEVATOR - MOMENTS LATTER

Mulder waiting for the elevator reacts to.

ABBY (O.S.)
Agent Mulder.

Mulder turns to see Abby. The young men by the window make some cheering and jeering noises b.g. The elevator arrives.

ABBY (CONT'D)
I'll ride down with you.

INT. ELEVATOR - CONTINUOUS

ABBY
Do you intend to arrest Nate?

MULDER
(surprised at the familiar address)
My investigation is into the possibility of true psychic healing. A phenomenon that dates far back in ancient folk lore and legends but has been dismissed by modern science.

ABBY
(Watching for Mulder's reaction)
What's your take on demon possession?

MULDER
It's a belief held by almost every culture and religions.

Abby starts the elevator again.

MULDER (CONT'D)
Including Judeo Christian theology.

ABBY
What do you believe?

MULDER
(ignoring the question)
What's your connection to Shepard?

The elevator stops. The doors open affording Abby the escape she desires. Mulder steps between her and the door. Abby, seeing Mulder will not be denied an answer, regards him with deep sorrow.

ABBY
He's my brother.

INT. FBI HEADQUARTERS - PHOTO IMAGING LAB - DAY

CUE computer screen, the tabloid picture of Nathaniel. A finger points to the screen.

MULDER (O.S.)
Zoom in on the man's face.

Keys click, a box marks off the man's face, enlarging it frame by frame, Until it fills the screen. Large and unclear.

MULDER (CONT'D) (O.S.)
Enhance.

More keys tapping. The picture becomes marginally clearer.

NEW ANGLE

Mulder and a MAN in a lab coat leaning over the computer.

MAN
That's as good as it gets. Cheap low rez film.

Mulder looking at the picture intently, he recognizes the man. His cell phone rings. Still studying the picture he answers it.

MULDER
(into phone)
Mulder.

SCULLY
(filter)
Mulder, it's me.

Mulder steps away from the man for privacy.

MULDER
(into phone)
What do you have?

SCULLY
(filter)
The test show the tumor to be a rare form of cancer in the late stages.

MULDER
(into phone)
And?

SCULLY
(filter)
It's human... But we have no way of verifying where it came from.

MULDER
I think I may have something even more interesting.

INT. ABBY'S APARTMENT - NIGHT

Abby is asleep on the coach. The reading light illuminates her face. The Bible lays open across her chest. As she sleeps the reading light flickers and burns out, casting the apartment into darkness. From out in the hall way we hear foot steps. Abby's eyes open. The foot steps stop outside her door. Abby lays, frozen, listening.

NEW ANGLE

The door knob turns and the door swings open. A hand holding pistol with a silencer affixed to its stubby barrel,appears. Then a man steps into view. On this we:

END ACT ONE

Chapter Text

ACT TWO

EXT. RIVER - NIGHT

Police lights color the surface of the water, we hear its gentle sloshing and see the shape of a body, floating face down in the current.

NEW ANGLE

A cop wades out into the water, grabs the corps by the clothing and hauls it to shore. Other officers move in, pulling the stiffened body onto dry land. The only sound is that of the river and their movements. They turn the body over. Flash light illuminates the face, and we recognize:

NATHANIAL his features frozen in death. There is an ugly dark hole in his forehead. As the camera pulls closer the eyes open, becoming:

INT. NATHANIAL'S BEDROOM - NIGHT

CU Nathanial's sweaty face as he sits bolt up in bed. The camera pulls back as Nathanial touches his head with a shaking hand. He looks across the dark room and we see:

THE MAN sitting in a chair, smiling.

INT. ABBY'S APARTMENT - NIGHT

The shooter moves slowly toward the bed room. We recognize Brisco in the dim light as he stops outside the bedroom door and raises the gun. It coughs three times. Brisco steps into the room out of sight. Abby slips off the coach, to her knees almost dropping the Bible. Her breathing is hard, shallow with fear. She slips the Bible under the couch. We can hear The sounds of Brisco muttering as he finds the bed empty.

NEW ANGLE

Abby's POV from around the edge of the coach we can see the bedroom doorway. Through the opening we catch a glimpse of Brisco returning. Abby leaps up.

INT. DARK HALL WAY - CONTINUOUS

Abby exits her apartment, races to the elevator. Pushing the elevator call button, she looks back at her apartment. The elevator door opens startling her. Abby leans inside and punches "Lobby" Then races to the open window, earlier occupied by the young men.

EXT. APARTMENT BUILDING - CONTINUOUS

Abby steps out onto the narrow ledge and slides along it until the shadows conceal her.

INT. APARTMENT BUILDING - HALL WAY

Brisco emerges from Abby's apartment and heads for the elevator, see's where its going and hurries for the stairs.

EXT. MARGARET'S HOUSE - NIGHT

Five men dressed in black, their faces concealed behind hideous mask, approach the dark house.

INT. MARGARET'S HOUSE - BED ROOM - CONTINUOUS

Margaret and her husband, GERALD, are asleep on the bed. We hear a noise. Margaret stirs. The sound comes again this time waking her. She nudges her husband.

MARGARET
Gerald. Gerald, wake up. Someone's in the house.

Gerald, a sound sleeper is just coming to his senses when the door burst open. The sight of the gruesome faces sets Margaret off. She begins to scream. Three of the men are on Gerald long before he gets around to reacting. They drag him off the bed and out of the room. Margaret continues to scream, reaching a new pitch as one of the assailants grabs her by the hair and pulls her face close to his. Margaret is well beyond hysteria now. Her screaming has become a shrill squeak, punctuated by chocking gasps.

ASALENT
Time to pay your bill, Margaret.

He flings her back down on the bed and drops a piece of paper with something written on it by her head.

ASALENT (CONT'D)
Give it to your husband.

Margaret takes the note in her trembling hand. Reads it.

MARGARET
This is that federal agent?{Pushing the paper away} I can't. Gerald will never agree to do it.

ASALENT
If you want to go on living, you convince him to.

The two men leave the room. Margaret lays where she is, whimpering into the down comforter. Gerald returns. Looking slightly battered and very shaken. He checks his wife and finding her unharmed, reaches for the phone on the night stand.

GERALD
I told you not to get messed up with those religious freaks. I'm the bank president for God's sake, Margaret. You have any idea what kind of scandal you've created?

He is dialing when Margaret lifts her face out of the blankets. With a look of horror she grabs his arm.

MARGARET
Gerald, what are you doing!?

Gerald shakes her off angrily.

GERALD
We just had a break in, I'm calling the cops.

MARGARET
(shrieking)
You can't. He'll put it back! He'll put it back!

INT. MULDER'S APARTMENT - NIGHT

The alarm clock by Mulder's bed reads 2 Am. His cell phone rings. Mulder stirs sleepily, hits the snooze button. The phone rings again. His grouping hand finds it.

MULDER
(into phone)
Yeah?

ABBY
(filter)
Is this Agent Fox Mulder?

Mulder is more alert now. He swings his feet off the bed.

MULDER
(into phone)
Abby?

ABBY
(phone filter)
I'm in trouble.

MULDER
(into phone)
Where are you?

INT. PHONE BOOTH - NIGHT - CONTINUOUS

Abby is crouched down on the filthy floor of a phone booth, strangling the receiver.

ABBY
(into phone)
I'm on West Haven across from a liquor store. Please come get me.

INT. MULDER'S APARTMENT - NIGHT - CONTINUOUS

Mulder is pulling on his clothes.

MULDER
(into phone)
I'll be there in 20 minutes. Are you alright?

INT. PHONE BOOTH - NIGHT- CONTINUOUS

Abby reacts to a tap on the glass. She looks up and sees:

A MAN, we recognize him as the man from the alley. He grins and moves on.

Off Abby's frightened expression we fade to:

INT. SCULLY'S APARTMENT - NIGHT

Scully looking sleepy is carrying a cup of coffee into the living room where Mulder is sitting on the coach. Abby stands by the darkened window with her back to the room speaking softy.

ABBY
...I'm not trying to defend Nate. He may have killed your photographer. I imagine he's done a lot of evil things...

Mulder notices Scully's coffee as she take a seat beside him on the coach.

SCULLY
(under her breath)
Get your own.

Abby turns away from the window and faces them.

ABBY
He's my brother and I can't seem to stop loving him. I know he aught to go to prison...

SCULLY
(looking at Mulder)
It's unlikely our investigation will result in any kind of conviction unless we can tie your brother to the attempt made on your life tonight.

ABBY
Nate didn't do that. It's the people he works for. They're afraid I'll some how persuade him to quit.

MULDER
Who is he working for, Abby?

ABBY
(shrugging)
Nate called them The Order.

MULDER
Are you aware of any connection between your brother and senator Houser?

Abby looks at him in frozen silence, unconsciously she begins to twist the chain. Scully stands abruptly.

SCULLY
I'd like to talk to you, Mulder. Alone.

INT. SCULLY'S APARTMENT - KITCHEN - NIGHT - CONTINUOUS

Mulder is pouring himself a cup of coffee.

SCULLY
This is professional suicide.{As Mulder turns to look at her}If we start investigating a presidential candidate we are going to have our heads handed to us. Especially if we are trying to tie him to a tabloid faith healer and some faceless cult.

MULDER
It makes sense, Scully. One month into his run Houser was a diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and expected to drop out of the race. Then less than a week latter he is given a clean bill of health by his doctors who were quoted as saying it was a miracle.

SCULLY
It's called spontaneous remission. While medically unexplained it is a scientific fact. Unlike faith healing.

MULDER
Political tampering has been done through bribery, black mail, coercion, and sex. Why not a miracle?

SCULLY
Why Mulder? To what end? You have to prove motive.

MULDER
Power. What greater motivator is there? Why are you fighting me on this?

Scully looks at her partner, bristling slightly.

SCULLY
Just once I would like to jeopardize my career based on facts rather then speculation and innuendo. Which I might point out is all we have right now. And don't even bring up those pictures. That guy looks like Elmer Fud.

ABBY (O.S.)
Nate sent me a letter about a month ago...

Scully and Mulder turn to look at:

ABBY standing in the door way.

ABBY (CONT'D)
He was scared. He claimed that he had healed the senator and his employers were using it to gain political leverage...

MULDER
Where's the letter now?

ABBY
At my apartment. I keep it in my Bible.

EXT. APARTMENT BUILDING - DAY- ESTABLISHING

INT. HALL WAY - CONTINUOUS

The elevator door opens and Mulder exits. There is a MAN standing by the window. We recognize him as the MAN from the ally and the phone booth. Mulder feels a deep fear welling up inside him as he walks past the MAN, who smiles at him. The action slows down and the scene becomes dream like as we see the MAN'S face fluctuate, becoming something grotesque. Mulder's hand goes for his weapon as he turns to face the MAN. Real time resumes abruptly as Mulder reacts to:

COP ONE (O.S.)
Can I help you Sir?

Mulder confused, faces the UNIFORMED COP his hand still resting on his gun. The cop reacts, taking a step backward and drawing his own weapon.

COP ONE (CONT'D)
Sir, take your hand away from the gun. Slowly.

Mulder glances back over his shoulder, the MAN is gone. A beat as Mulder struggles to comprehend what he saw, then:

COP ONE (CONT'D)
I said, get your hand away from the gun.

MULDER
I'm a federal agent. {He raises his hands slightly} ID is in my coat pocket.

INT. ABBY'S APARTMENT - MOMENTS LATER

An FBI FORENSICS TEAM is dusting down door knobs and light fixtures when Mulder and the cop enter. The cop indicates that Mulder is to wait and disappears into the bedroom.

MULDER'S POV

We see a corner of a book sticking out from under the coach.

NEW ANGLE

Mulder crosses to the coach and crouches down. He pulls the book out far enough to see the top of an envelope protruding form between the pages. He pulls it out and slips it into his pocket, reacting as:

AGENT GREENLY (O.S.)
Agent Mulder.

Mulder straitens, turning to face GREENLY as he does he nudges the book further under the coach with the toe of his shoe.

AGENT GREENLY (CONT'D)
Finding anything interesting?

MULDER
Dust bunnies. You in charge?

AGENT GREENLY
Agent Greenly. Mind my asking what you're interest in Page is?

MULDER
I'm investigating Nathaniel Shepard. Heard she attended his church.

AGENT GREENLY
Is he the guy in the tabloids?

MULDER
That's him.

AGENT GREENLY
My wife is convinced he's the real thing. {Shaking his head}I don't want to interfere with your investigation at all Agent Mulder...

MULDER
Then don't.

AGENT GREENLY
I'm investigating Page in connection with a drug lord named Ramirez. Seems she embezzled a million dollars from him. Not as fascinating as a x-file but the government feels it's worth looking into.

Mulder realizing he is now in a precarious situation.

MULDER
Pretty casual digs for an embezzler. She must be saving for retirement.

Agent Greenly doesn't comment.

MULDER (CONT'D)
Mind if I look around?

AGENT GREENLY
No, not at all. Interdepartmental cooperation has always been a dream of mine.

Mulder starts to move past Greenly.

AGENT GREENLY (CONT'D)
By the way Agent Mulder, there was a shooting here last night.{A beat}Know anything about it?

Off Mulder's look of innocents we:

END ACT TWO

Chapter Text

ACT THREE

INT. MULDER'S CAR - DAY - CONTINUOUS

Mulder gets into his car and slams the door. He reacts to a tap on the window. POV through window we see Agent Greenly. Mulder rolls down the window.

AGENT GREENLY
Got a minute. Agent Mulder?

MULDER
Actually, I'm in kind of a hurry.

AGENT GREENLY
({Resting his hand on the door} I just got a positive ID on you from a young man who says you were here yesterday and that you talked to Page. Mind telling me what you talked about?)

MULDER
(caught)
The Bill of Rights.

AGENT GREENLY
I'm curious, why you would feel the need to lie?{A beat}Do you know where she is, Agent Mulder?

Mulder doesn't answer.

AGENT GREENLY (CONT'D)
I'm developing an interesting theory. Care to hear it?{No response}I think you came here to see Page, talk to her about Shepard. But she was in trouble, she asked for your help...How much help does a hundred grand buy these days, Mulder?

MULDER
I'm not for sale.

AGENT GREENLY
That's commendable. Why did you come back here? The girl forget something? Or did you?

MULDER
(starting the engine)
I'm about to forget my manners.{Glancing at Greenly's hand}Move it or lose it.

Greenly takes his hand off the car, flexes his fingers thoughtfully.

AGENT GREENLY
This doesn't have to escalate.

MULDER
Meaning?

Greenly brings his other hand into view. He is holding a plastic bag in which is Abby's Bible.

AGENT GREENLY
I found this under the couch with the dust bunnies.

MULDER
Who are you?

AGENT GREENLY
I'm the guy who is giving you a chance to save your skin, Agent Mulder. As of this moment my investigation only involves Page. If you choose to cooperate there is no reason for it to extend beyond that.

MULDER
Is that a threat of some kind?

AGENT GREENLY
It's an opportunity. Give us what we want and you can live happily ever after.

INT. SCULLY'S APARTMENT - DAY

Scully is sitting on the coach channel surfing. She is incredibly, painfully board. She reacts to a knock on the door, rising and a drawing her gun.

EXT. SCULLY'S APARTMENT - DAY

Mulder looking impatient as the door opens. He enters quickly.

INT. SCULLY'S APARTMENT - DAY

Scully closes the door as Mulder brushes past her.

MULDER
Where's Abby?

SCULLY
Asleep in the bedroom.{As Mulder heads for the bedroom}Are you going to tell me what going on or is it a surprise?

MULDER
(rapping on the door)
ABBY!(To Scully}I'm in trouble, Scully.{He pulls a letter out of his pocket}I need you to keep this for me.

He hands Scully the letter and knocks on the door again.

MULDER (CONT'D)
ABBY!

SCULLY
Mulder what's going on?

The door opens and Abby comes out looking sleepy.

MULDER
Get your coat, we're leaving.

Abby glancing at Mulder and Scully, then sensing the tension ducks between them to get her coat.

SCULLY
Mulder?

MULDER
(finally giving her his attention)
I'm sorry, Scully. The less I tell you the less you have to lie.

EXT. SCULLY'S APARTMENT - DAY

POV through windshield of parked car we see Mulder and Abby exit the building and get into Mulder's car. As they pull out The camera pulls back enough to reveal a man's hand dialing a cell phone.

INT. SCULLY'S APARTMENT - CONTINUOUS

Scully is reading Abby's dog eared letter. She is startled by a knock on her door. She slips the letter under a corner of a throw rug, the knock comes again, harder. Demanding.

INT. LONE GUNMAN'S PLACE - NIGHT

CUE computer screen, police rap sheet. Mug shot of Abby. Under:

LANGLY (O.S.)
Woo, Ho, your girl friend is a real heavy hitter...

Scroll down screen. List of felony arrest. Under:

BYERS (O.S.)
(reading)
...drug trafficing, assault and attempted murder, money laundering to the tune of a million dollars.

NEW ANGLE

Mulder, BYERS, FROHIKE and LANGLY turn to Abby who is staring at the screen with a mixture of disbelief and horror.

ABBY
Where did that come from?

FROHIKE
It's the wave of the future. A good hack can get into any system, create a file and never leave so much as a finger print.

ABBY
(looking at Mulder)
I could go to prison for this{Making a helpless gesture at the screen}fiction.

MULDER
I don't think this is ever intended to make it to trail.

ABBY
That's comforting...

Trying to grapple with the implications, Abby walks away, hands over her face. Byers follows to offer comfort.

MULDER
I need you to hack into a bank's computer.

LANGLY
Who's bank?

MULDER
Mine.

Langly starts hitting keys.

NEW ANGLE

Abby leaning against the wall, staring at the floor numbly.

ABBY
I just wanted to get my brother back.

BYERS
Can I get you something?

ABBY
(shaking her head miserably)
A head stone.

BYERS
Don't worry Agent Mulder is one of the best. He'll get to the bottom of this.

Abby looks apprehensively at Mulder.

ANGLE ON COMPUTER SCEEN

Showing Mulder's account: one hundred thousand dollar deposit and withdrawal. Under:

LANGLY
I think you better keep your head down, man.

INT. SCULLY'S APARTMENT - CONTINUOUS

Scully opens her door and finds herself facing THREE MEN in suits and dark glasses.

FIRST MAN
(flashing an FBI badge)
Agent Scully?

EXT. FBI HEADQUARTERS - NIGHT - ESTABLISHING

INT. FBI HEADQUARTERS - NIGHT

Scully siting in an office. She is incensed. We recognize the FIRST MAN from her apartment standing off to the side. They both react as:

ANGLE ON DOOR

Agent Greenly enters carrying a file and smiling pleasantly.

GREENLY
(crossing to Scully)
Sorry to keep you waiting so long, Agent Scully.{He offers his hand}I'm Agent Greenly.

Scully ignores the hand getting her feet, ready to lock horns.

SCULLY
Am I under arrest?

GREENLY
(as if taken aback)
By no means, Agent Scully. Please have a seat.

SCULLY
Then what the hell am I doing here and why did they take my gun?

GREENLY
(still pleasant)
Just a precaution, miss Scully{Motions to the first man}Give the lady's weapon back.{To Scully}You understand.

As the fist man hands Scully's gun over and she checks the chamber.

SCULLY
No, I don't.

GREENLY
(still pleasant)
I'm looking for your partner. It's very important that I find him.{With an edge}Your cooperation would be most appreciated. What do you know about Agent Mulder's activities over the last few days?

Scully puts her weapon away. Cautious and suspicious.

GREENLY (CONT'D)
(off Scully's silence)
Some very serious allegations have been raised. We have reason to believe Agent Mulder may be aiding and abetting a wanted criminal.

Greenly takes a photo out of the file and hands it to Scully.

CU photo of Abby.

GREENLY (CONT'D) (O.S.) (CONT'D)
His association with this girl has placed Agent Mulder's life in great danger, Agent Scully. It's important that we find him first.

INT. SCULLY'S APARTMENT - NIGHT

Scully enters, tired and discouraged. It's dark but she doesn't bother with the light. She throws her keys on the table and watches impassivity as they fall onto the floor. Wearily she walks over and bends down to retrieve them. She stops, stooped over, her hand reaching for the keys. We hear a sound like rushing wind. Scully straightens, turns, drawing her gun as she does. The camera turns with her, panning the dark room.

INT. MULDER'S CAR - DRIVING - NIGHT

Mulder, his coat off and tie loosened, is behind the wheel. Abby is looking out the window at the darkness.

ANGLE ON REAR VIEW MIRROR

Head lights reflect in it far back, gaining slowly.

INT. SCULLY'S APARTMENT - NIGHT - CONTINUOUS

Scully reacts to a movement off to her left. She spins following the movement with the barrel of her gun. Something is caught in the dim light filtering through the window blinds. Scully, fear jumping in her throat watches as it seems to run right up the wall.

NEW ANGLE

Scully, her attention focused on the frightening sight, doesn't notice:

Nathaniel grabs her from behind, forcing her gun hand down, his arm around her neck, cutting off her air. Scully struggles to free herself, stomping down on Nathaniel's foot. He grunts in pain tightening his grip on her throat.

Off Scully, fighting for breath, slowly growing weaker, we fade to:

EXT. REARVIEW MIRROR - NIGHT

filled with the brilliant reflection of headlights, then exploding as a we hear a shot.

EXT. ROAD - CARS DRIVING - CONTINUOUS

The pursuing car pulls into the oncoming lane. The passenger leans out his window, taking aim with a shotgun.

INT. SCULLY'S APARTMENT - NIGHT - CONTINUOUS

Nathaniel is standing in the dark livingroom holding the letter and Scully's gun.

NATHANIEL
I just came by to get this.

The camera pans around and we see Scully,on the coach, dazed.

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
I'm sorry, maybe I should have called first. {He laughs, insane}

SCULLY
That's evidence in a federal investigation.

NATHANIEL
To you perhaps. To me it's a death sentence. You see I wrote it in a moment of weakness. The people I work for don't tolerate weakness.

SCULLY
The Order?

NATHANIEL
(laughing)
What's in a name?

SCULLY
Are they responsible for what's happening to my partner?

Nathaniel's mood becomes dark.

NATHANIEL
Your partner has brought this on himself. He's zealot, Dana. He's going to die a zealot's death.

EXT. ROAD - CARS DRIVING - NIGHT- CONTINUOUS

The two cars race along the darkened road. The man with the shotgun takes aim. As the rear window explodes, Mulder's car veers off the pavement into a field. Off Mulder's car coming to rest in a cloud of dust we:

END ACT THREE

Chapter Text

ACT FOUR

INT. SCULLY'S APARTMENT - NIGHT

Scully alarmed by what Nathaniel has just told her stands up abruptly.

SCULLY
If anything happens to Agent Mulder I will hold you personally responsible..

He lifts the gun ever so slightly, a subtle but powerful suggestion. The insane look in Shepard's eyes assures her that he will shoot.

NATHANIEL
Please don't threaten. It's so impolite.

SCULLY
Tell me what you know about Mulder!

NATHANIEL
When did you first know your faith was dying, Dana?

The way he is looking at her makes Scully's blood chill. She avoids his gaze.

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
I know you think I'm a scoundrel. How did you put it? "Praying on peoples hopes and fears" It's very poetic, but not entirely accurate.

Nathaniel smiles at Scully, his eyes are penetrating, unavoidable.

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
I'm helping them. Doing what God won't.

SCULLY
Did you help the photographer? Is that why he's dead now?

NATHANIEL
He's dead because he fell three hundred feet.{A beat}You don't want me to tell you the truth, it's not scientifically sound.

SCULLY
I want you to tell me how to find, Mulder.

NATHANIEL
Sorry. That doesn't fit into the plan.

Nathaniel backs to the door keeping Scully covered. At the door he ejects the magazine, clears the chamber and tosses the gun away.

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
I apologies for the intrusion.

Nathaniel opens the door.

SCULLY
If Mulder is killed you will be an accessory in the death of a federal agent. Tell me what you know.

Nathaniel just smiles and goes out and Scully reacts as the phone rings.

EXT. FIELD - NIGHT

The sedan is parked on the shoulder, we can see Mulder's car out in the field, head lights illuminating the dry grass in front of it. There is no sign of life. The sedan's doors open. Brisco and Richard exit.

INT. MULDER'S CAR - NIGHT - CONTINUOUS

The camera finds Abby down on the floor boards holding Mulder's cell phone to her ear. We hear it ringing. The camera slowly moves up until we see Mulder slumped over the steering wheel, unmoving. There is a gash in his forehead and the left shoulder of his shirt is bloody. POV through driver's window, past Mulder we see Brisco signal Richards b.g.

INT. SCULLY'S APARTMENT - NIGHT- CONTINUOUS

Scully picks up the receiver.

SCULLY
(desperately)
Mulder?

EXT. MULDER'S CAR - NIGHT- CONTINUOUS

Abby holding the phone, her hands now raised above her head.

SCULLY
(phone filter)
Mulder? Can you hear me?

POV through window, Richards midsection and hands holding the shotgun pointed at Abby's head.

EXT. FIELD - NIGHT - LATER

Mulder weak and hurt, but alive, is propped against the rear fender of his car. Abby stands with her hands on the trunk, her lower lip between her teeth trying not to cry. Richards is watching them, shotgun in hand.

BRISCO talking on a cell phone.

BRISCO
(into phone)
No sir, She's unhurt.{A beat as he listens}My instructions were clear. Why the change?{Another beat.}I understand.{He looks Richards way} No, it's not a problem.

Brisco hits "end" and starts over to the car.

RICHARDS
What's the word?

BRISCO
Change in plans. Shepard wants to see the girl.

RICHARDS
No. We do it like we were told. It's going to be light soon.{He licks his lips, nervous}Someone's going to drive by and see us.

BRISCO
Then quit wasting time.{He crosses to Mulder}Plant the bills.

RICHARDS
(emphatically)
I'm not crossing them. We walk these two out in the woods.{Off Brisco's dangerous look}I'm talking sense here and you know it. We do the job like we were told.

BRISCO
We've just been told different.{Tosses Richards the phone}You want to argue with the man about it?

RICHARDS
(abased)
He only want's to see the girl right? Lets pop The fed.{Off Brisco's look}No man, Shepard's losing it. This is nuts...

BRISCO
Plant the bills.

RICHARDS
(whining)
...The Fed is going to be trouble.

Brisco crosses to Mulder and crouches down next to him. Mulder looks at him, woozy and defiant. Brisco grabs him by the collar and forces him to the ground, face down. Then using Mulder's own handcuffs, shackles his hands behind his back.

MULDER in agony, close to passing out.

BRISCO (O.S.)
You won't be any trouble will you, Agent Mulder?

As MULDER lapses into unconsciousness we fade to:

EXT. FIELD - MORNING

Scully with a stricken expression stands looking at Mulder's wrecked car. The area is cordoned off with yellow police tape and PEOPLE in FBI wind breakers move around the car. Taking pictures, collecting evidence. Greenly is there, taking notes, analytical. A professional doing his job.

SKINNER (O.S.)
Agent Scully!

Scully turns to face SKINNER who is approaching from the road. Police cars and unmarked vehicles line the shoulder. Curious motorist are waved on by a UNIFORMED COP. b.g. Reluctantly Scully starts toward Skinner, meeting him half way.

SKINNER (CONT'D)
Any sign of Mulder or the girl?

SCULLY
No sir.{She hesitates,braces herself}The rear window has been shot out and there is blood on the front seat as well as by the rear fender. We also found a blood trail leading to the road.

SKINNER
Mulder's?

SCULLY
Presumably, sir. We won't know for certain until the lab test come back.

Scully looks off. Being strong. Logical. Fighting her fear.

EXT. ABANDONED FARM HOUSE - MORNING - ESTABLISHING

INT. FARM HOUSE - FRONT ROOM - MORNING

We see Brisco and Richards siting at a table in the front room playing cards. They look like men who have been up all night.

INT. FARM HOUSE - BED ROOM - CONTINUOUS

In the dim room we find Mulder, lying on his side, still handcuffed. He is unconscious, pale from blood loss, close to death.

Abby is sitting against the wall, knees drawn up, arms rapped around them, rocking, slowly as if in a catatonic state. Her hands are covered with Mulder's blood.

Suddenly she stops. She seems to listen, then looks at Mulder. A struggle is taking place. Her hand goes to the cross. She twists it fearfully, eyes closed. Then hesitantly she goes to Mulder, touching his shoulder as if expecting to find him dead.

MULDER stirs, opens his eyes.

MULDER
(mumbling)
Scully?...Scully...

A thin trail of blood begins to seep from the corner of his mouth.

ABBY (O.S.)
Agent Mulder.

MULDER focusing on her voice. His mind is foggy.

MULDER
I'm cold...

ABBY (O.S.)
(matter of factly)
You're going to be fine.

FRONT ROOM - FARM HOUSE - CONTINUOUS

Richards slaps down his cards impatiently.

RICHARDS
When is he going to get here?

BRISCO
He gets here when he gets here. I'm not a mind reader.

RICHARDS
They say Shepard is. You think it's true? That he can read minds?

BRISCO
(nonchalantly)
I think you owe me.{Looking at his cards}Aces and kings.

Richards gets up in disgust, sweeping the cards onto the floor.

RICHARDS
We're dead men. You can collect it in hell.

Brisco tosses his own cards on the table and settles back casually.

BRISCO
Not if you keep your head.

Richards unconvinced and nervous walks to the window, looks out at the overgrown yard.

BRISCO (CONT'D)
We let the man see his sister then we finish the job. Everyone is happy.

RICHARDS
He's going to know. I can feel it.{Whining}Why did I ever get into this?

BRISCO
The money, Richards. You want to be around to collect your next check quit sniveling and concentrate on the job.

RICHARDS
Car!

Brisco gets up, draws his weapon and crosses to the window.

POV through window, dark car coming up the driveway.

Brisco holsters his gun.

BRISCO
Wipe that guilty look off your face. It's go time.

INT. FARM HOUSE - FRONT ROOM - MOMENTS LATER

Nathaniel enters in a rage.

BRISCO
Almost thought you'd changed your mind.

Nathaniel gives Brisco a dangerous look then with sudden violence, grabs Richards by the collar, lifting him off the floor and pining him against the wall.

NATHANIEL
(in Richards face)
Don't second guess my orders again.

Richards cowers in Nathaniel's grip. Nathaniel lets him down and takes his gun.

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
I'll save you making another mistake.

RICHARDS
I wouldn't do that. I swear...

INT. FARM HOUSE - BED ROOM - MULDER - CONTINUOUS

Is clinging feebly to life as Abby pulls opens his shirt revealing the ugly exit wound in his chest.

NEW ANGLE

Abby is reaching out her hand timidly to touch Mulder when she reacts as a shadow falls across them.

NATHANIEL (O.S.)
You trying to move in on my act, little sister?

Abby, terrified looks up and sees:

NATHAINAL standing over her. He grabs her hand yanking her away from Mulder. Pulling her to her feet. He holds the offending hand in a crushing grip.

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
This man is dead. You aren't going to save him.

Abby meets her brother's eyes and strangely she smiles.

NATHANIEL (CONT"D)
(his expression demonic)
You think God will save him for you? Your God has abandoned you. Open your eyes...

He turns her around, forcing her to see:

CUE

MULDER

as he shudders violently, eyes rolled back. He has the look of a dying man. Slipping away before our eyes.

NATHANIEL (CONT"D) (O.S.)
He's not going to save the Agent's life any more than he saved our mother's.

NEW ANGLE

Abby turns to look back at her brother and sees the MAN as he steps out of the shadows. He comes to stand beside Nathaniel. As he grins at Abby his face fluctuates revealing his true demonic nature.

NATHANIEL
You see, Abby, where the real power lays?

INT. FARM HOUSE - FRONT ROOM - CONTINUOUS

Brisco and Richards react as Nathaniel and Abby exit the bedroom.

BRISCO
You ready to finish this?

NATHANIEL
What's your hurry, Brisco?

BRISCO
The agreement was for you to see the girl.{Drawing his gun}You've seen her

Brisco crosses to them, his intent clear.

BRISCO (CONT'D)
I'm just doing as I'm told. You don't want to watch, wait outside.{To Abby}Turn around and get on your knees.

Abby looks to her brother, her eyes begging for help.

NATHANIEL
Brisco, I'm beginning to question your loyalty. You've been sneaking around like a garbage stealing dog.

Brisco is obviously shaken by this.

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
Did you think I wouldn't know?

Brisco puts the gun in Nathaniel's face, his own betrays his fear. Richards is a man ready to run b.g.

BRISCO
It's your loyalty that is in question here.

NATHANIAL
I know they sent you after my sister, Brisco. Why the rush? Were they afraid I would change my mind? Flush fifty mil down the toilet because my little sister sheds a few tears?

BRISCO
I have a job to do. You want to get out of my way?

NATHANIEL
(laughing)
What are you going to do? Kill the cash cow?

BRISCO
I'm going to survive...

NATHANIEL
(quietly)
Do you really think so?

Brisco chambers a round and Nathaniel puts his hands up in surrender, stepping back. Brisco turns his attention to:

ABBY

Who looks after her brother, the realization of her fate numbing her mind.

BRISCO (O.S.)
Down on your knees.

NEW ANGLE

Abby doesn't move. Transfixed with fear, starring at her brother. Angrily Brisco grabs her by the shoulder spinning her around and forcing her to her knees. As Brisco levels the gun at the back of her head we see Nathaniel settle into a chair by the table b.g.

EXT. FIELD - MORNING - CONTINUOUS

Agent Greenly and Skinner stand by Mulder's car talking as forensics continues to go through it.

AGENT GREENLY
If we find them I guarantee you it won't be alive. This was a professional hit.

SCULLY looking out across the field. Trying to make sense of the situation as:

SKINNER (O.S.)
I don't buy this, Agent Greenly.

AGENT GREENLY (O.S.)
No? Well it's what the bureau is going to buy. Agent Scully's story of a faceless group manipulating the government from within wont sell in Washington. And if you care about her career at all you will advise her to drop it.

SKINNER (O.S.)
I want hard evidence before you start dragging Agent's Mulder's name through the mud and I want to know who you answer

INT. MULDER'S CAR - MORNING - CONTINUOUS

An AGENT looking under the back seat sees:

POV under back seat, a stack of 100 dollar bills. He fishes them out and turns to:

FIELD AGENT
Got something.

Greenly crosses to the Agent, takes the bills.

AGENT GREENLY
I find this very compelling.

Without a word Scully starts to walk back towards the road.

SKINNER
Where are you going, Agent Scully?

SCULLY
(not stopping)
Home. Unless you want to arrest me.

AGENT GREENLY
Leave this alone, Agent Scully. Your partner is dead. You try to push this ridiculous theory and you'll only succeed in destroying your own credibility...

SCULLY continuing on, her face set.

INT. FARM HOUSE - MORNING - CONTINUOUS

ABBY

On her knees awaiting the inevitable, twisting the cross with violently shaking fingers.

Then we hear the shot, see Abby jerk, breaking the chain. Brisco collapses into the frame.

NEW ANGLE

Nathaniel holding Richard's gun. Richards looking over at Brisco in disbelief.

NATHANIEL
(to Richards)
Get out.

Richards afraid even to obey, stands frozen.

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
It's alright, Richards.{He smiles insanely} I won't shoot you. Promise.

Richards charges for the door. Slamming into it in his haste...fumbling frantically with the knob. In wild panic he stumbles out into the day light.

EXT. ROAD - DAY

A quiet road awash in bright sunlight.

INT. SCULLY'S CAR - DRIVING - DAY

Scully drives. A tear comes to her eye. Abruptly she pulls over, coming to hard stop. She shuts the engine off. Troubled, exhausted she closes her eyes to think, to pray...

INT. FARM HOUSE - DAY

Nathaniel crosses to Abby who is still on her knees looking down at Brisco, dead on the floor beside her.

Abby glances up at:

NATHANIEL Who is standing next to his demon. They both are smiling.

NATHANIEL
He had orders to kill me. He was just afraid to look me in the eye and pull the trigger, the coward.

Nathaniel kicks Brisco's dead body.

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
(to the corps)
Did you think I wouldn't know?{Then to Abby}Maybe I can plead self-defense.

Abby unclenches her fist and looks at the cross lying in her palm. She is numb.

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
(laughing)
I've made myself a stench in my employer's nose, so to speak.

Abby looks at her brother, a killer, a man without hope. She gets to her feet carefully, afraid to startle him.

He returns her gaze. A cornered animal look in his eyes. She holds out her hand offering him the cross.

ABBY
It was mom's. You ought to have it for a while.

Nathaniel takes it. He starts to shake as if he is about to break down.

NATHANIEL
Why did she have to die?

ABBY
I don't know.(beat)I don't know why...

Maybe he hears her. He is turning the cross over in his hand thoughtfully. A heavy oppressive darkness falls across the room. The demon appears next to Nathaniel. It's speaking to him, words we can't hear, spoken directly to his heart. His expression changes, until it mirrors that of his demonic master. He raises the gun, pointing it at Abby.

NATHANIEL
God, I should kill you. I've had enough of your sanctimonious religious crap to last a life time. It's all lies. Where was your God while mom was dying in that stinking hospital?{Jabbing the gun in her face}WHERE IS HE NOW?!

The demon is smiling at Abby. It is very, very pleased. It says more dark, bitter things to Nathaniel, enraging him further.

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
WHERE IS HE, ABBY?! Is he going to save you, Abby?

Abby looks beyond the barrel of the gun, beyond the angry face of her brother at:

THE DEMON grinning and evil.

ABBY
It's not as powerful as it pretends.

NATHANIEL
(shouting)
I made a deal with it.

ABBY
Deals with devils can be broken.

Nathianial looks over his shoulder at:

The DEMON and shivers violently. The gun in his hand shakes dangerously.

NATHANIEL
(bitter, angry laughter)
Not after the things I've done. Terrible, cruel things. And I've enjoyed it. All of it.( A long beat as he looks back at Abby)And when I kill you I will enjoy that too.

The DEMON continues to grin, its eyes on Abby. She looks back at it, unafraid.

ABBY
(to the demon)
You, get out.

It convulses and takes a step back, its hideous face twisting as if in fear or pain.

ABBY (CONT'D)
(softly)
Go away.

And it obeys. Walking away, slumped shouldered. It crosses to the door and stops there. Waiting for:

Nathaniel as if just waking from a dream finds himself pointing the gun at his sister.

NEW ANGLE

He lets his arm fall and giggles childishly.

NATHANIEL
He can't save me, sis. God doesn't care...{Looks at the demon}...It showed me how I'm supposed to die.

Nathaniel laughs, lifts the gun to his own head for a moment.

NATHANIEL (CONT'D)
Jokes on them. I still have options.

Abby puts her hand on his arm. He looks at her. She pulls him close and he begins to cry, letting her hold him, tho he makes no move to return the embrace.

NATHANIAL
Why, Abby?

ABBY
You're my brother.

At her words Nathanial tenses.

NATHANIAL
You think there is a way back for me. You're a fool.

He pulls away and walks toward the door, going back to his demon.

ABBY
Where are you going?

NATHANIAL
To hell.

The demon grins at:

ABBY as she helplessly watches her brother walk out the door.

ANGLE ON DOOR

As it closes behind them.

NEW ANGLE

Light returns to the room as ABBY starts for the bedroom door, then stops her face to the wall. Her shoulders shake as she begins to weep silently. Slowly she sinks to the floor.

INT. SCULLY'S CAR - ROADSIDE - DAY

Scully is asleep. Her cell phone rings jarring her awake. Surprised to find herself there, she answers it.

SCULLY
Scully.

Scully listens her face bewildered.

SCULLY (CONT'D)
Who is this?

INT. FARM HOUSE - FRONT ROOM - MOMENTS LATER

As the door opens and Scully enters weapon drawn, sweeping the room. Seeing Brisco's body and:

ABBY who is sitting against the wall.

NEW ANGLE

Scully crosses to her.

SCULLY
WHERE'S MULDER?

ABBY
(pointing at the bedroom door)
He's in there.{Off Scully's fear}It's OK. He's OK.

But Scully doesn't hear as she bolts for the door. Flinging it open she sees:

MULDER lying in the dimness, his shirt covered with blood.

NEW ANGLE

Scully crosses to him. Dropping her knees.

SCULLY
Mulder, can you hear me?

Mulder opens his eyes. He seems a little surprised.

MULDER
Scully?

SCULLY
Don't try to move Mulder, you've lost a lot of blood.

She pulls back his shirt looking for the injury.

MULDER'S CHEST

Clean and unmarked.

EXT. FARM HOUSE - LATER

Mulder and Scully are standing by Scully's car. Abby is sitting in the back seat looking miserable.

Mulder has his finger through the hole in his bloody shirt.

MULDER
I felt myself die, Scully.

SCULLY
Did Shepard touch you?

MULDER
(shaking his head)
I was alone. No one touched me.

EXT. BACK ALLY - DAY

A brooding darkness hangs over the ally, as Nathaniel the picture of a man in turmoil, paces, his mother's cross dangling from his fist. The demon sits on a dumpster, observing him. Nathaniel's misery is pleasant to it.

EXT. FBI HEADQUARTERS - DAY - ESTABLISHING.

INT. FBI HEADQUARTERS - DAY

POV through two way mirror, Abby sits at a long table, her forehead pressed against her hands. Eyes closed as her body rocks with the fervency of her prayer.

EXT. BACK ALLY - DAY

Nathaniel takes Richards gun out of his pocket. His demeanor is now calm, he is a man who has made a decision. The demon stands beside him, speaking unheard words to him, smiling. Nathaniel slowly slides the action back, as he does his mother's cross slips from his fingers.

NEW ANGLE

The little cross falling, catching the light. Finally coming to rest among the filth in the ally.

NEW ANGLE

Nathaniel holding the gun, looking down at the cross. He reaches down to pick it up. As his fingers close around it, he falls to his knees. He lets go of the gun, covering his face with his hands.

NATHANIEL
Lord, please help me!{Bitter tears}Forgive me...

ANGLE ON DEMON

as it turns to walk away, light floods the ally consuming the demon.

EXT. POTOMAC RIVER - NIGHT

WIDE ANGLE

Police cars are parked along the bank, lights throwing the shadows around. Several TEENAGERS stand next to one of the squad cars talking to AN OFFICER who is taking their statements. Down by the waters edge a group of COPS are crowded around something. Scully's car pulls up f.g.

NEW ANGLE

Scully exits her car,looking as if she has been dragged out of bed. A UNIFORMED COP approaches her and she flashes her badge wearily. A COP breaks away from the group by the shore and climbs the bank b.g.

COP TWO
(calling)
Agent Scully!

We follow Scully as she joins the cop and the two go back down the bank. The crowd parts to allow Scully to enter. A MAN wearing a wind breaker with the words "Coroner" emblazoned on it is bending over the dark shape of a body. Scully moves closer, bending down to look. Someone shines a flash light on the dead man's face and we recognize:

NATHANIAL'S bloodless face as in the dream sequence. There is a small dark hole in his forehead.

CORORNER (O.S.)
This your guy?

NEW ANGLE

Scully nods and stands up.

SCULLY
Time of death?

CORORNER
From the preliminary examination I would put it with in the last six hours. Know more after the autopsy.

Scully walks away, along the dark shore. She is tired. Nathaniel's death brings an end to the hope she has been clinging to. She stops, looks out across the river at the far shore. It is as black as the despair she feels.

COP TWO (O.S.)
Agent Scully...

Scully turns to see the cop approaching. He holds a plastic bag out to her.

COP TWO (CONT'D)
This is all we found on him.

Scully takes the bag.

CUE

contents of bag, Abby's cross.

INT. COUNTY JAIL - INTERROGATION ROOM - DAY

Mulder sitting at the table, in a prison uniform, needing a shave. Scully is sitting across from him. Two guards stand by the door b.g.

MULDER
I hope you have good news, Scully.

SCULLY
I ID'd Nathaniel Shepard's body last night. He had been shot in the head and dumped into the Platomac river.

MULDER
You bring my tooth brush or does this get better?

Scully lays a file on the table, Mulder opens it.

SCULLY
This was delivered to me this morning, Mulder. It's Shepard's complete confession, detailing his involvement with the Order and their activities within the government over the last ten years...

Mulder studying the contents of the file intently.

SCULLY (CONT'D)
...he confirms your theory about Houser.

The door opens and Agent Greenly followed by Skinner enters.

AGENT GREENLY
(pleasantly)
You're a lucky man, Agent Mulder.

Greenly moves past Scully and takes the file from Mulder, who jumps to his feet. The guards move in. Skinner intervenes, coming between the guards and Moulder.

SKINNER
This isn't the time, Agent Mulder.

Mulder locks eyes with his boss. Scully bristles.

SCULLY
(to Skinner)
What is this, sir?

SKINNER
Let it go. We have what we want. The government is dropping the investigation into both Mulder and Page.

MULDER
(To Greenly)
That's evidence in my investigation.

AGENT GREENLY
Shepard is dead, you no longer have an investigation...{He starts to the door}...if you ever did.

MULDER
(accusingly)
You're Houser's lap dog...

Agent Greenly stops at the door, looks back at Mulder.

AGENT GREENLY
You're getting your life back, Agent Mulder. Be content with that.

Greenly smiles pleasantly and goes out, Closing the door softly.

EXT. TRAIN STATION - NIGHT - ESTABLISHING

INT. TRAIN STATION - NIGHT

The station is nearly empty. Abby is sitting on a bench, luggage at her feet. She is wearing her Mother's cross once again, but her fingers are not twisting it fitfully. She looks peaceful. Then she reacts to:

PA SYSTEM
Train 259, now boarding.

Abby gets up and collects her things, walking away. A YOUNG MAN takes her seat, pokes some quarters into the pay TV and turns up the volume.

TV
...Senator Houser collapsed earlier today at a press conference. The front runner...

ANGLE ON TV

An anchor woman sitting behind a desk, picture of SENATOR HOUSER on screen behind her.

TV
...was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer at the beginning of his presidential bid. The cancer which reportedly had gone into remission has now returned. Doctors are amazed at the rapid spread of the disease. A short time ago the Senator slipped into a coma from which he is not expected to recover. His last words were reportedly."I made a deal with Satan" He then asked the nation to pray...

THE END