“Dana Scully speaking”
“You have got to get out more.”
“I get out plenty, thank you very much.”
“Yea but ever since everything with that guy you haven’t done anything! You’ve been so mopey all week and now I bet you’re sitting in your hotel room being mopey too.”
‘You don’t know that”
“I will give you a hundred dollars if you’re anywhere but your hotel room right now, alone”
“I just haven’t felt the need to go anywhere”
“Dana you have to get over yourself!”
“Well even if I did want to go out who am I going to go out with?”
“What do you say I come up tomorrow. You know I love that old bar that was across from the hospital, you used to take me there all the time. We’ll go out, have a few drinks, flirt with some boys…”
“Missy I don’t know…”
“Dana for once in you life just have fun! I guarantee you one hour with me and you’ll have forgotten all about FBI man”
“Ok fine. But we are not staying out late because I have to work the next day and if you start taking shots I’m leaving you at the bar.”
“Not if you’re taking shots with me!”
“Love ya Danes gotta go bye!”
It was a tiny little bar called Rosco’s, packed with DC's finest, including G-men, doctors, and college students. The tables were cramped and wobbly and the floor was a little sticky in some spots but Dana had been going since she first started working at the hospital. The doctors had a routine of going out on Friday nights and she had found herself more than once dancing to the old jukebox to Billie Joel and Queen in her practical doctor heels after a long shift. If she had been thinking clearly, the thought that maybe the longstanding tradition would still be continuing this Friday might have popped into her head. But on Friday night she found herself sitting in her favorite bar nursing a beer when the music seemed to cut out and in walked what seemed like every single one of her old colleagues, ready to let off some steam after a long day of saving lives.
It didn’t take long for them to notice the two red headed girls sitting at the bar, especially since Missy stopped flirting with the bartender to start asking Scully which of her friends was single quite loudly. She recognized most of them when she looked into the crowd but there were certainly a few new faces. Resident students she guessed.
She quickly waded through all the “Dana oh my god how are you!” and “Oh wow it’s been so long!”. She was genuinely happy to see some faces. She recognized a woman named Kelsey who joined the hospital at around the same time she did. They had always been close, so when she was greeted with a hug she wasn’t surprised. Missy was the social butterfly, flitting through the doctors one by one before winding up back next to her like a meet-and-greet merry-go-round.
“We should buy them drinks!” Missy giggled at her, clearly enamored with one of the new young doctors that Scully didn’t recognize. “You know Mark’s here right?”
She hadn’t seen him come in, but it didn’t surprise her. She glanced in the corner of the pack to see the familiar salt and pepper hair of Dr. Mark Bordone, cardiac specialist. Before she left DC, the two of them had gone on a date or two. He took her to a bar like this one but much less fun and the interest was clearly one sided. But he bought her drinks and made nice conversation so she had been more than willing to entertain it. She had to admit he still looked good.
He looked over at her and smiled this big smile and she could see his eyes twinkling. She did remember that he was good at parties, the charming type. He smiled across the floor and eased his way over to her, pushing past grad students and a pair of police officers, until he sat down on the stool Missy had abandoned.
“Dana Scully it has sure been a while” He had a smile that perfectly fit his face, with shiny white teeth that seemed to add to the sparkle in his eyes.
“It sure has Mark. What have you been up to?” The slightly awkward conversation was better than sitting alone at the bar, since she had no one else to talk to now that Missy was over rubbing shoulders with the other students.
“Oh nothing much. I’ve been promoted to head of surgery. Kirk finally retired.”
“Wow. Well congratulations”. He smiled and she turned to drain her beer. She noticed his eyes flit down to her chest as she leaned back.
Let's take a moment to assess, shall we.
No wedding ring on the finger, so he hadn’t tied down one of the nurses. He was handsome, he fit her usual type, he was the biggest flirt she knew, and he wasn’t a stranger. And she desperately needed something, anything, to distract herself from the nagging FBI agent who wouldn’t leave the back of her mind.
“Why don’t you use some of that ‘Head of Surgery’ money to buy me another drink. I'm sure you’ve got plenty to spare.”
She caught a thumbs up from Missy from across the bar as the bartender passed another two beers over the counter.
It was Missy who spotted him first. She had made her way through the crowded bar to Scully, who was still sitting at the bar with Mark. Scully had made it past small talk, and four beers later was now talking about the politics of the cardiac ward with her suitor. She was about to suggest maybe they go to a more quiet table to talk more when Missy popped out of the dance floor and shouted over the music “There’s a group of FBI people at some of the back tables. Maybe your alien guy is here?”
The night had truly been going so well.
“Alien guy?” Mark asked with a chuckle, and Scully laughed with him. She hadn’t known Mulder for long, but he didn’t seem like the type to be out on a Friday night in a crowded bar.
“I doubt it” she giggled, but she shifted closer to Mark as if to show him if he was here, she had moved on. Mark had placed a hand on her thigh and maybe she would have shrugged it off 2 beers ago but with Mulder fresh in the back of her mind she let it rest.
“I don’t know but one of them is super cute so I’ll be at their table for a while” Missy giggled then slipped back into the dance floor like she was being engulfed by the blob.
“I should probably go check on her” Scully said with a grin, and Mark shot one back.
“Should I be worried about this alien guy? He’s not coming from Mars to steal my woman?” He laughed again and she forced a smile.
“No, no, he’s just a friend. And besides, I don’t think this is his scene”. She rose from the bar stool and his hand fell off her thigh easily.
“I’ll be back in a few. I should probably go pull my sister off whatever person she’s decided to drape herself over.” He was easy to come back to.
He gave her a chuckle and a wave and she allowed herself to be swept away into the crowd, moving with the flow of dancers and drunkards like tides in the ocean to the back corner where Missy had previously pointed. She spotted her sister first, sitting in the lap of some blonde man wearing his FBI bomber jacket. She was just about to stroll over and pull her away when she spotted a gaggle of girls in the next booth on the right and there he was.
Her alien guy.
He looked uncomfortable, with a blonde woman clinging to his side, laughing at something he said with this forced bounce that she probably practiced. But he smiled back at her and tossed his arm around her and Scully felt a fury deep in the pit of her stomach.
She considered just leaving Melissa to run back across the bar, but he took his eyes off Blondie for a second and to glance at the dance floor and she saw the look of recognition in his eyes as he spotted her.
In an instant she power walked towards Melissa and yanked her off of G-man number 1, ignoring her “What the fuck!” as she dragged her sister back into the dancing mob and away from the gaze of Fox Mulder.
“What the fuck was that for” Missy huffed, pulling herself away from Scully’s grip, finding a small pocket in the swarm of bodies. Scully, however, was busy peering through strangers' shoulders, trying to see if he was following them. She thought she saw him get up but she couldn’t be sure. Missy noticed.
“Oh my god he IS here! Where?” She then proceeded to try to stand on her tip-toes before Scully pulled her back down. “Is he the tall one? He is so cute Danes no wonder you’re so hung up on him.”
“Yes. But he is with a girl and I don’t want to talk to him, so I really would prefer if we didn’t make a big deal out of it”
“Oh my god you totally have to win him back. You have to talk to him. Make him jealous. You should dance with Mark!”
“Who’s Mark?” And there he was, towering over the two of them with a goofy smile that made her feel things she didn’t care to admit. Melissa happily slipped back into the dancers, probably to go find her FBI guy again, or more likely watch their conversation through elbows and shoulders.
And so they stood in the middle of a crowded dance floor, waiting for the other to make the first move.
“Mark’s my date.” He doesn’t need to know that the date was unintentional. She glanced up at him, coldly, trying to avoid lingering on the way that his shirt was unbuttoned to show a glimpse of his collarbone.
“Ah. Where is he now?”
“At the bar. Who’s Blondie?”
“My boss’s secretary. She’s been trying to get me to go out with her and her friends since I started.”
“So you’re here on a date.” Scully crossed her arms, waiting for him to get the hint that clearly she didn’t want to be talking for much longer.
“I wouldn’t call it that. Do you want to dance?” He stepped closer to her and the bubble they had created pressed in on them, making her watch the ground so she didn’t step on his toes.
“I should go back to the bar…”
“Dance with me.” His presence was mesmerizing and his scent intoxicating. The music couldn’t have been louder, and yet she felt like she could hear their hearts beating. Maybe, she could just pretend that everything hadn’t happened. She could pretend that he was just a handsome stranger she met at a bar and allow herself to be swept up in his arms.
Scully was always good at pretending.
She didn’t say yes so much as nod, and then she found his arms wrapping around her and their bubble disappeared completely and she was surrounded by him. His arms, his shirt, his smell, everything about him engulfed her completely and it made sense because as much as she tried to forget him she felt this tether in the back of her head, like a magnet pulling north, and now she had found it and she locked right into place pressed against his chest. They swayed to the music, lost in the sea of bodies, allowing themselves to be pulled with the tides of hips and hands. A song went by, maybe two, and she felt his hand dip lower to rest on the notch above her jeans.
“You’re wearing navy again” he whispered into her ear. She opened her eyes suddenly to the sound of his voice. She hadn’t even realized they had closed.
“I like navy” she whispered back, and she could hear him chuckle though she couldn’t see his face, his breath hot on her neck.
“It makes your eyes look like the sea”. As if to prove his point he pulled back from her and tilted her chin upwards with a finger. She looked up and gazed into his eyes as he stared into hers and she could feel the electricity flowing between them. She felt herself being drawn forward to him. Her eyes fluttered shut, and he was so close, and it was so perfect.
“You have a case file.”
And there it was.
“Excuse me?” She drew back sharp as a whip and she knew, she knew , it was all too good to be true.
“I looked you up, you have a case file. They did start an investigation, they just never finished it” She pulled back, pushing back into one of the dancing masses, and she felt his hands drop from her sides. Nothing is ever perfect.
“Scully I know you said not to meddle but I can help you…”
“And I told you I don’t want your help! I can’t believe you , I can’t…” She backed away from him further, hearing cries of “watch it” coming amidst the dancers.
“No Mulder. You weren’t even supposed to be here, I didn’t want to see you” He steps back in shock and they’re attracting attention now but she doesn’t care. She’s lashing out, out of what she doesn’t know. “I don’t need your help, and I don’t need you, so go back to your blonde bitch, she can clearly give you whatever you want from me”
She felt hands on her shoulders and heard a man say “Dana, is something wrong?” but all she could focus on was his face. The way he stared at her like she broke his heart.
He didn’t even know her but as she slipped away into the crowd he watched her like she was the world’s most precious jewel sinking beneath the waves.
She heard Mark talking to him, but the bodies closed the gap between them and Melissa took her by the wrist and led her to the front, out the door, and the cool air of the night hit her face.
“Do you want to go home?” Missy reached up and wiped a tear from Scully’s cheek. She hadn’t even realized she was crying. She nodded and Melissa turned to call the cab. She shivered, listening to the muffled music in the bar, processing everything that just happened.
The door opened and Mulder walked out. Instantly, her sister was back in front of her, like a 5’2 battle shield.
“I’m going to have to ask you to get the fuck away from us.” For what she lacked in stature, Missy made up for in sheer grit. She once picked a bar fight with a Navy Seal. She could take a 6’1 pouty FBI agent.
“I just want a second”
“You don’t deserve a second.”
“Please. I promise, just one second and then you’ll never hear from me again.” He glanced over Missy’s shoulder and caught Scully’s eye. Missy looked back and Scully gave a resigned nod.
“Fine, but I’m timing you.”
Mulder stepped past Melissa in the way you would step past an armed bomb and proceeded to invade Scully’s space again.
“What do you want?”
“For?” She stood with her hands on her hips, but he looked so pitiful. She noticed his eye was swollen.
“I’m sorry for getting into something that’s none of my business”
“Why?” He looked confused so she elaborated. “Why do you want to help me so much?” He looked at her again and the way the streetlights bounced off him made him look like he was glowing. She felt another tear slip down her cheek. The bar music faded away and all that was left was the humming of the lights.
“I want to help you because I feel connected to you. Ever since we first met I’ve felt this pull like a…” He searched for the words.
“Like a magnet.” He snapped his fingers and it startled her.
“Exactly. And I know, I know that everything that happened to you is really none of my business” She raised an eyebrow at him but he didn’t notice, instead stepping closer so only she could hear.
“But I like you so much. More than I think I’ve ever liked anyone. I think you’re smart and gorgeous and for God’s sake Scully you save little kids lives for a living and I don’t deserve you at all, but I want to make your business my business.” She was smiling now, and he brushed a hair back from her face, letting his hand linger down her cheek.
“All of my business?” It was a test.
“All of your business. Not even just the parts you think I’m interested in. I want the mundane, the ordinary, the outright boring. I want everything that has to do with you”
“Ok.” She looked up at him and he seemed shocked, like he truly didn’t expect the conversation to go this way.
“Yes, ok-” And she couldn’t finish her sentence because his lips were on hers and everything was right in the world. His hand found her waist and she gasped but his tongue stole it away. She returned the favor and wrapped her hands around his neck, tilting up on her toes to reach him. He kissed with a fury and she met him with equal passion, their lips moving in synchronicity. She let a moan slip out when his hand dipped lower to cup her ass through her jeans. She would have been embarrassed if he didn’t smile into her mouth when she did and grip tighter. She brought her hand to cup his face but he winced and pulled away.
“What happened to your eye?” She hadn’t noticed the color in the streetlights but up close she could see the reddish shade it was turning.
“Well your date didn’t seem to like how I made you run out crying and all, so he decided that I needed to be taught a lesson”.
“I’m so sorry…”
“Nah it’s alright. After he realized he just assaulted a federal agent he decided I wasn’t worth it” She went to run her fingers over his eye but he grabbed her wrist and instead kissed her fingers. He was about to lean in again before he heard an “ Ahem ” over his shoulder, and he turned to see Missy with her arms crossed next to a waiting cab.
“I don’t mean to interrupt whatever all this is…” she waved her hand to gesture to the two of them, “But our cab is here.”
He turned back to her and pulled her close, placing a firm, lingering kiss on her lips. She could hear him sigh when they pulled apart.
“I’ll see you soon?”
“Yes you will.”
Maybe the world could be perfect. At least for a little while.