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X Files: New partner, New era

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Agent Scully lay in her hospital bed, still in shock over the news that Doggett had just told her; he was now her new partner on the X Files.
He’d gone a minute ago to get some coffee, maybe to give her a moment alone to absorb the news, she thought. Scully lay back on her pillow, fresh tears stinging her eyes and threatening to spill down her cheeks. “Mulder,” she choked out, finally letting the tears fall freely. A new wave of sadness washed over he as she thought of her colleague, abducted, frightened and lonely, like she was when she was abducted. Scully wiped her eyes dry. Well, at least we’ve got something in common- we’ve both been abducted, she thought wearily. She wondered what Mulder would do in her situation with a new partner. Would he feel threatened, protective of his territory? How should Scully act with Doggett? Scully sighed. Can she really trust Doggett? He sure seemed to be single minded like Mulder, with one mission in his mind- to find Mulder. But unfortunately for Scully, he was looking in all the wrong places.
Can she rely on Doggett or will he just hinder her chances of finding Mulder? Maybe Skinner is the only man she could trust now. After all he knew a lot about her relationship with Mulder, and he had the power to help her find Mulder.
Scully was startled out of her musings as the door to her room opened and Doggett returned with a cup of coffee and some snacks for Scully. “In case you get hungry later,” he mumbled awkwardly before leaving the snacks on the table beside her bed and sitting down in the chair next to her.
“I appreciate you looking out for me, Agent Doggett, but I can take care of myself. I’m not an invalid,” Scully told him, somewhat more defensively than she meant to.
She regretted how she said it when she saw him wince and sip his coffee to hide it. “I’m sorry,” Scully mumbled, lowering her gaze and staring at her hands which were resting on her lap. “I guess I’m still processing a lot of information,” she said with a wry grin at Doggett in an attempt to lighten the mood. It seemed to work, Doggett relaxed slightly as he sat back in his chair. “It’s okay Agent Scully. You don’t have to explain yourself to me,” he told her with a small smile. “But I do need you to promise to try and trust me. I will find Mulder, you have my word,” he said gently and kindly. Scully studied his face and felt he truly and genuinely did mean what he told her.
Finally Scully smiled a small smile at him and nodded before resting her head on the pillows once more. “And I swear I would never tell Kersh about what Skinner saw, either,” Doggett told her softly, as he leaned forward conspiratorially. All of a sudden Scully found herself holding her breath. Doggett leaned forward and without meaning to his head was just inches away from hers.
Then their eyes locked together, and they shared a meaningful stare as Doggett leaned forward, so close and closed his eyes, leaving Scully to think he was going to kiss her. But to her surprise, she found herself closing her eyes too, preparing herself to kiss him back…
Then as soon as the moment began, it was over as Scully’s door to her room opened and a nurse came in rolling the dinner trolley in front of her. “Dinner time. I’m sorry sir but unless your immediate member of Ms Scully’s family then I’m going to have to ask you to leave. Visiting hours are now over,” the nurse said, firmly but kindly.
Doggett and Scully pulled back from one another and blinked in surprise at the nurse. To her embarrassment Scully found herself blushing, and hoped Doggett didn’t notice as she focused her attention on the food that the nurse laid out for her.
Doggett nodded. “Sure,” he said to the nurse as he got up from his chair. “Have a good night. I’ll see you tomorrow Agent Scully. Let me know when you can come back to DC,” Doggett told her. Scully nodded with a weak smile at him. “Good Night Agent Doggett,” she told him softly. “Good Night Agent Scully,” Doggett replied with a small nod. Scully noticed he glanced at her briefly as he stood behind the nurse who was still prepping her food. He opened his mouth as though he wanted to say something, but changed his mind and snapped It shut before finally leaving the room.
Scully smiled and thanked the nurse before she left her with her dinner. She couldn’t help but look over at Doggett’s half full discarded plastic coffee cup that he left on the bedside cabinet, still warm and making her think of him.
Scully shook her head as though trying to clear all thoughts of Agent Doggett from her mind. Focus on Mulder, she told herself silently as she started to eat her food. But to her dismay, that was going to be easier said than done. Mulder, she thought sadly. Maybe Doggett was a way of trying to comfort her, she thought hopefully. That almost kiss didn’t mean she liked him- she just wanted comfort after losing Mulder, her partner and the one person who was close to her. It didn’t mean she liked Doggett… did it?

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The following afternoon Scully sat in the passenger seat of Doggett’s rental car, ready to go home. She had been given the all clear from the hospital tests and free to go home. Doggett got in the car and passed her a bottle of water. “The nurse suggested it,” Doggett explained with a shrug, not wanting Scully to see how much he worried about her, in case his feelings towards her weren’t returned. Scully smiled and nodded at him as she took the water bottle while Doggett put on his seatbelt and put the key in the ignition. “Thanks,” Scully told him softly and smiled.
Doggett nodded before turning on the engine and pulled out of the parking lot. “Homeward bound,” he quipped as they hit the road. On the way Scully studied his profile from the corner of her eye while she pretended to doze. He certainly was different from Mulder, Scully thought as she took in his ruggedly manly handsome face with deep worry lines on his forehead. His eyes were bright blue as the blue sky and mesmerising too.
Scully turned her head to her rolled down window, feeling a blush rise to her cheeks again. The wind and air cooled her down, but Scully still found herself hot under the collar, and it had nothing to do with the temperature in the car.
She bit her lip before taking a sip of water. There was something about Doggett that she found herself liking. Maybe she liked his single mindedness and vow to find Mulder. In that way, Scully mused, he did remind her of Mulder. Mulder was always so single minded too, and passionate about his work. Doggett was equally caring about his career and took his job seriously too.
“Agent Scully?” Doggett’s deep manly voice Interrupted her musings. She snapped to attention. “Yes, Agent Doggett?” she asked him, giving him her full attention. “So uh, if you don’t mind mr asking, how long have you worked with Mulder?” he asked gently.
Scully smiled sadly. “Seven years roughly,” she told him almost a little wistfully. Doggett nodded, equally sadly. “You must miss him,” he said gently. Scully appreciated this thoughtful side of Doggett. All she had seen of him so far was his focus on work and nothing else. Maybe he was starting to understand her and Mulder, Scully thought hopefully before smiling. “Like you wouldn’t believe,” she told Doggett.
“Bet you have a lot of stories about him,” Doggett said with a little chuckle. Despite her sadness Scully couldn’t help but chuckle too at the find memories she had of Mulder. “Any good ones you like to tell me?” Doggett asked with a raised eyebrow as he continued to drive.
Scully nodded. “Well there was this one time when we went to Area 51 and we saw a UFO fly over us and a man In black…,” she began telling an interested Doggett as they continued to drive home.

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After a few stories Scully shared with him about Mulder, the drive home felt like it went much quicker to Doggett. He grinned as he listened to the tales his new partner was telling him, feeling secretly pleased she was opening up and appeared to be warming towards him.
Maybe this could be the start of a great partnership, Doggett thought hopefully as he drove into Georgetown where Scully lived. He glanced at her out of the corner of his eye, enjoying seeing the way how her eyes lit up when talking about Mulder. Mulder, Doggett thought, squeezing his eyes shut for an awkward moment and swallowing hard as he thought of Scully’s former partner.
By the way she talked about him he could tell that they were very close. He couldn’t help but notice how attractive his partner was. She was also very intelligent. Doggett has never worked with someone like Agent Scully before, and all of a sudden he felt a little nervous, as he wondered how they would get on. Would he Impress her or annoy her? Doggett asked himself. Then he shook his head subtly. Stop thinking this way about her, he ordered himself. She’s with Mulder. But despite knowing this, Doggett still felt drawn like a magnet to his beautiful and interesting partner. “Agent Doggett, are you listening to me?” He suddenly heard her say, startling him out of his thoughts.
“Yeah. Turn left here and we’re there,” Scully gestures to her left as Doggett pulled himself together before following her directions.
He parked outside her apartment and smiled at her. “I’ll give you a hand with your luggage, Agent Scully,” Doggett told her politely as he unhooked his seatbelt, got out and walked round the other side of the car to open the passenger door for her. “Thank you Agent Doggett,” Scully replied with a grateful smile as Doggett slowly helped her out of the car.
“Home sweet home,” Doggett said with a grin as he popped open the trunk and took out Scully’s heavy bag. “Yep,” Scully replied, grinning back. She found herself to be a little shy as they both walked up the steps to her door. She knew Doggett was still a stranger to her, she wasn’t sure if she could trust him or not, she pondered, biting her lip as she took out the key to the apartment and unlocked the door before leading Doggett inside. So far, so good. He was well behaved, polite and a gentleman, different to his rude self when they first met. But was it all an act? Did he want something from her? Scully wondered as she open the door to her apartment.
“Would you huh, like to stay for a cup of coffee, Agent Doggett? You know, to say thanks for taking me home,” Scully asked. Doggett smiled. “I’d like that,” he replied, before Scully took his jacket and hung It up as he sat on her couch. Half an hour later they had finished their cups of coffee and had gone over the next X File case that they needed to start the next day when Scully stifled a yawn. Doggett looked up in concern. “Are you okay, Agent Scully? I could leave now if you need to have an early night,” he suggested before starting to get up from his seat.
But Scully gestured for him to sit back down. “Thanks Agent Doggett but I’m okay, just a little tired from the drive. But you’re right I will have an early night tonight,” she said, thankful for Doggett’s caring side. Then, before she could stop herself, Scully blurted our, “stay with me tonight,” not quite believing she uttered her thoughts. She instantly looked down at the floor as a stunned Agent Doggett looked at her.
Scully gulped, afraid that Doggett might reject her. She hadn’t planned for him to stay, but she missed Mulder so much, and felt she needed a companion… she finally mustered up the courage to face Doggett and she looked up. To her relief, she saw Doggett looking at her warmly. “Sure, okay Agent Scully,” he told her.
Deep down something told him she was probably just missing Mulder, as Doggett found out from the stories she told to him in the car, and that Doggett might be a rebound thing. But Scully was so inviting, Intelligent, and a caring person all round that she made It hard for him to say no to. They looked into each other’s eyes deeply, before Scully got up from her seat and sat slowly down next to him…

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Scully lifted her face to Doggett’s and gazed into his crystal clear blue eyes. After what seemed like an eternity, Doggett finally gave in and took her in his arms, wrapping his strong arms round her slender body and found himself kissing her. Scully felt a rush of pleasure when her lips met his. They kissed for a few long minutes, leaving Scully breathless. She was sure she’d never been kissed like this before.
Then the kiss ended and Doggett pulled away, Scully could see his blue eyes questioning hers. “Dana,” he said hoarsely, his voice thick with desire. Scully smiled, pleased he was feeling the attraction too. “Sshhh,” she said, placing a finger on his lips. Then to her pleasure, Scully kissed him. He kissed her back passionately and she responded with a passion she had never known before, not even when she was with Mulder. They found themselves untwined in a big embrace.
Without saying a word, Scully reached out her hand and stood up, intending to lead Doggett to the bedroom. Doggett noticed this was what she wanted to do, and there was no question about it, he wanted it as well. He’s like nothing more than to lie in Dana’s arms, comforting her, protecting her from the pain she was going through. But something wasn’t quite right. Doggett hesitated, looking into her deep blue eyes. Finally, he shook his head, as of coming out of a trance, a trance called Dana Scully.
“I’m sorry Dana. I can’t, we can’t. Not now,” he said softly, lingering a little and feeling like the world’s biggest jerk as he saw the disappointment in her eyes. “John,” she whispered. “Don’t go,” she added, almost desperately as she squeezed his hand. But Doggett was determined. He didn’t want to hurt Scully by sleeping with her on the first few days that they had met. That would be unprofessional for sure, and he was afraid of letting her down if he couldn’t find Mulder.
Sadly, he released his hand from her grip, and hung his head, not wanting to meet the sad look in her eyes. “See you at work, Agent Scully,” he told her gently before leaving the apartment and feeling like a coward. Once outside he kicked a stray pebble on the steps in frustration. What was wrong with him, he wondered as he made his way towards his car. A beautiful woman wanted to get close to him, and he couldn’t get out of there fast enough. He sighed. Deep down, he knew the answer to that. Mulder was a tough act to follow if Scully’s retelling of their adventures in the car were to go by.
As he felt earlier, he was weary that he’d never measure up to Mulder and afraid that Scully would reject him if he had stayed the night with her, so he had rejected her first. He felt bad as he got In the car and started the engine before driving home. On the way he promised himself to sort things out with Scully first thing the next morning when they both got to work so they can start working together again with a clean slate. Yes, that’s the plan, Doggett decided with determination as he drove home. Boy, he thought. Tomorrow was going to be tough. He hoped Scully wouldn’t be too angry with him.

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The next morning a frustrated Scully entered the FBI building. She was wearing her favourite silk blue blouse, long black pencil skirt and a dark blue blazer with her FBI pass attached to it. She grimaced as she got in the elevator and rode it down to the basement level. It was 7:30am, so the elevator and building was still quiet. Scully had wanted to get there early so she could compose herself and get the office ready for Agent Doggett when he came in later the morning. But Scully stopped short as she stood at the opened door to the X Files office. That’s strange, she thought. I don’t remember leaving the door unlocked before going to Arizona. Taking a deep breath, she stepped into the office, only to find Deputy Director Alvin Kersh standing next to the X Files cabinet, reading a bunch of X Files that he laid out on Mulder’s desk.
“Sir? What brings you here?” Scully asked cautiously. “Come on in Agent Scully. I’m just trying to find any clues or pointers that might help us find Agent Mulder. As you can see, I’m reading through the last couple X Files that you and Mulder worked on, hopefully it will give me an insight in Mulder’s messy situation,” Kersh told her without looking up from the file. “Have you found anything sir?” Scully asked, a little hopefully. Kersh shook his head. “I’m afraid not, Agent Scully. It’s hard to find any clues, any behavioural pattern from Agent Mulder as these files are so disorganised. When was the last time you tidied the office, Agent Scully?” Kersh asked her, putting the file down and taking off his glasses as he looked at her. Scully winced.
It had been a while since she and Mulder tidied out the office. “I guess this office does need to be cleaned. I’m sorry Sir but that’s also why I came in early this morning, so I can set It up for Agent Doggett,” she told him.
Kersh shut the cabinet draws with a clang and scooped up the few files he took out of it. “If I find information in these files that you haven’t told me in your statement Agent Scully, then I will have no choice but to keep Agent Doggett in lead of this department,” Kersh told her as he made his way out of the office with the files tucked under his arm. He then paused at the door and turned to face her. “Be sure to tidy this office, Agent Scully,” he told her sternly. “Yes Sir,” Scully replied and Kersh nodded before leaving.
Scully sighed as she closed the door behind him. She had nothing to worry about- she mentioned things In those files in her statement. But then there was a few files hidden in her apartment, for safekeeping. She and Mulder decided to keep them there away from prying eyes. Scully bit her lip. Should I tell Kersh about those? She wondered as she began tidying the office. As she tidied she felt guilty about how she’d treated Agent Doggett- and Mulder. But she couldn’t help feeling to need to be comforted at a difficult time like this, Scully reasoned with herself. She studied all Mulder’s things on the shelves on the wall behind the desk and smiled a sad smile at them. Then she found herself blushing as she remembered how Doggett had rejected her yesterday.
Scully was left confused by Doggett- she was sure they got on easily in the car as she told stories about Mulder. She was sure she felt a connection between her and Doggett- a common goal- to find Mulder. But was that not true after all? Scully wondered, forcing herself not to cry when she thought of Doggett’s handsome face.
Now what was she going to do with him? she wondered as she continued to put things away, making the office ready for Agent Doggett.

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Doggett hummed to himself as he parked his car in the FBI building’s parking garage and switched off the engine before he got out. He made his way over to the elevators and went down to the basement level.
He swallowed hard as he thought about Scully on the way down. He hoped she wasn’t too mad at him for rejecting her the previous evening. Besides, he was sure he was too much of a gentleman to make a sudden move on her, wasn’t he? He asked himself. Scully hadn’t been off his mind and he kept thinking about their kiss. It was so good, her lips were so soft… Doggett was startled out of his reverie as the elevator doors slid open to the basement floor. Doggett shook his head, how anyone can work down here was beyond him. He could see why Mulder might have made up crazy stories after being down here for so long.
Doggett walked slowly to the office, wondering if Scully was there. He heard footsteps as he rounded the corner- it was Scully. He stepped into the X Files office with his hands in his pockets and casually leant against the doorframe, trying to sound nonchalant so Scully wouldn’t get mad. “Agent Scully,” he greeted her after clearing his throat. At first in a tense moment, Scully didn’t reply. She was standing with her back to the office door and rifling through the X Files. Then to Doggett’s relief she turned round and smiled a tight smile. “Agent Doggett,” she greeted him. But Doggett’s heart sank when he saw the smile didn’t quite reach her eyes and her voice seemed strained. He saw little dark circles under her eyes- she looked as though she didn’t get much sleep the previous night after all.
Maybe I should have stayed. She probably just wanted a friend, Doggett thought as he but his lip. Yeah, friends with benefits, he thought wryly. He couldn’t take advantage of Scully- he had a feeling Mulder would kill him if he ever found him.
He took a deep breath, sensing a need to explain himself, “Scully, I’m sorry If I hurt your feelings last night. But I was only looking out for you. I don’t wanna hurt you,” Doggett tried to explain. Scully held up her hand. “Well, you did, Agent Doggett,” she said In a quiet voice, and Doggett saw her blue eyes flash with anger as she said so. She is mad, he thought glumly.
Despite his intentions to keep Scully at arms’ length, he found himself intrigued as he looked into her eyes. He’d never seen someone so angry before, and for some reason he found it rather attractive.
Scully closed her eyes and counted silently backwards from 10. “I’m sorry, Agent Doggett,” she told him. “I was way out of line,” she added glumly. “No, Agent Scully, you have every right to feel what you’re feeling. It’s me whose been the worlds biggest jerk. What do you say we start over on a clean slate, huh? Try again,” Doggett suggested hopefully.
After a moment Scully nodded with a proper smile this time that Doggett noticed. Scully’s smile really was pretty. There you go again, his nagging conscience told him. Stop thinking that way about her. Will you ever learn? She’s too dangerous for you. Doggett did take this thought in. But he couldn’t help but smile back at Scully.
“Thanks Agent Doggett,” Scully said as she held out her hand for him to shake. He shook her hand and grinned. “Right, well, while I sort out this office for you, Agent Doggett, why don’t you go upstairs and get us some coffee?” she asked him. Doggett nodded. “Absolutely Agent Scully. I’ll be right back,” he told her, before he left the office. Scully sighed as she watched him go. It looks like things were going to be okay between them after all, she thought hopefully. Then she groaned as she saw the mess in Mulder’s drawer. This tidying up is going to take longer than I thought, Scully thought as she threw an empty packet of sunflower seeds Into the trash can.

The End