He stirred and reached for her. She wasn’t in the bed. He looked toward the bathroom, but the door was open and the light was off. He rose from the bed and slipped back on his boxers, then padded barefoot into the living room.
She was standing in front of the window. “Scully?”
“Oh, sorry. I didn’t mean to wake you.” She looked over her shoulder.
“What woke you?”
“I got a fax.” She waved the page vaguely.
“From the guys?” She hadn’t really offered it to him.
“Uh, no. From Mom.”
“Your mother? What’s she doing up so late?”
She grinned then, “She’s in California. It’s not that late.”
“So what was so important that she sent it to you tonight?”
Scully sighed and handed him the paper. He scanned it quickly, then looked up at her, confused. She pulled her robe tighter around her and settled on the couch. “Scully?”
“It just, it brought back memories.”
“Not good ones.”
“No, not good ones.” She agreed. He settled beside her on the couch. He looked at the fax again. Paul Stanford, he’d been promoted to Senior Vice President at some large bank in San Diego. To Mulder, his smile looked too cocky, too confident. He disliked him on sight. Why would her mother send her something like this?
“What did this guy do?” She shrugged. “Come on, Scully.” He pulled her closer and kept his arm around her.
“Mulder, it was a long time ago. It doesn’t matter.”
“Did he hurt you? Do I need to go take care of him?” He said it lightly but something about his tone let her know that he would do just that if she asked.
“It seems so stupid now, but I guess it was a big deal in high school.” She cuddled into his side.
“Tell me.” He kissed the top of her head.
She looked down at her hands for a moment. “He, he was popular and smart and on the football team. I admit it, I thought he was dreamy. He was tall and blond and had a great smile. He was always happy and surrounded by other popular people.”
Mulder grimaced, at least she couldn’t see him. His total opposite. He kept quiet, letting her talk.
“I hadn’t dated much. We moved around too much to really . . . Anyway, I got this huge crush.” She gave a little chuckle. “It was stupid, but at the time it felt so important. Anyway, a friend of mine, and I use the term loosely, told him and he thought it was ‘cute’. I was only a sophomore and he was a senior. He actually asked me to go to his prom with him. I should have known better. He had a string of girls he could ask, so I was over the moon. I didn’t realize . . .I should have known it was a joke.”
“A joke? What, he didn’t . . . “
“He thought it was funny. I was this geeky teenager with freckles. No one that someone like him would date. I actually went to town and looked at dresses. They were expensive and I knew I was going to have trouble raising the money. Fortunately, it never got that far.”
“What did he do?” Mulder asked quietly.
“I came around a corner and caught him laughing about it with his friends.”
“Scully - “
“I was suitably mortified. It was the first time I wanted Ahab to get transferred.”
“He sounds like a real prick.”
Scully smiled, “Yeah, he was, and he broke my young heart. I didn’t go out on a date for over a year after that. I never told Mom what happened. Unless Missy told her, and I doubt she did, Mom doesn’t have a clue what she sent me.”
His arms tightened around her. “The offer to rough him up still stands. From this picture, I know I’d get a kick out of it.” He glanced at the fax lying on her coffee table.
“Not necessary. My heart is back intact now, actually whole for the first time ever.” She turned around and kissed him lightly.
“I’ll never break your heart, Scully.”
“I know. Come back to bed and let me show you how much I appreciate that, Mulder.”
He didn’t need a second invitation.
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Mulder, Scully, the Lone Gunman and Skinner all belong to Chris Carter, 10-13 and Fox. No infringement intended.