- Beyond -

 

5/18/98

 From: J. "Writing Machine" Ackerson <jackerson@mindspring.com>

 Subject: New story - Beyond 1/1

 Rating: PG for dark imagery.

 Disclaimer: The X-Files & the characters portrayed therein are property of C.C., FOX, 1013 Prod., etc.

 Spoiler Warning: Fifth season spoilers from "Redux 2" to "Travelers".

 Relationship: UST, MSR and Character death. *Full warning is given*.

 Summary: Mulder's thoughts on love, loyalty and sacrifice.

 Hi all! This story is based on two things: 1. the song chorus below that says more about love and women than I ever could and 2. the length people will go for love. I always said I wouldn't write these things, because they were depressing, but then they say that sometimes something dark can make us see just what we have and appreciate it more. So, I leave that final decision up to you. Anyway, on to the show. . .

 

 "A woman loves beyond her questions

Dreams beyond her doubts

Her heart will lead and she will follow

Even when there's no way out

Her eyes refuse to see the danger

As she walks right through the fire

A man may give himself to passion and desire

But a woman loves."

"A Woman Loves" by Steve Wariner

 

 She went beyond today.

 Beyond the call of duty. Beyond my or anyone's expectations. Beyond my wildest dreams or nightmares.

 Beyond my reach.

 So now I'm left to deal with this. Alone. Except for her memory and the guilt I have at the consequences of my actions, and hers.

 I'm sure that everyone at the Bureau simply thinks that she just did her duty; that she protected her partner and did her job. Yet I know for a fact that she did more than just that. She acted to save the life of the man she loved, took it upon herself to save me, no matter the cost. Because she couldn't live with the alternative if she didn't. And in doing so, she sacrificed me as well.

 I can't help but think that she could have done something different. Shot the suspect or tackled me by the legs. Or even let him shoot me. . .

 God, I wish she had done something different.

 But she didn't. Because she loved me.

 I never realized just how deep her love for me went until today. I mean, when I first heard her say that she loved me, I knew that I had never been in love like this before. That no one had ever cared for me so much, so completely until she came into my life.

 And today. . . today I found out how much I meant to her. How much she loved me. What it is to be loved. . .

 I should be dead.

 Wittingly or non, it doesn't matter much, I put myself in that position again. But then, it always seems like I'm putting myself in danger. I seem to be driven to take chances, heedless of the consequences. Of course, subconsciously I think, I expect that she'll get me out.

 She's kept me alive and kept me sane all these years. I'm a better man since she walked into my life. I've accomplished so much since she walked in my door.

 That day will now hold dual significance for me. When she walked in and said she was pleased to meet me. I thought that she was powerful and stunning and classic. Before, I saw it as the start of something. Now I see it was the last moment she had to reconsider her decision to work with me.

 The last chance she had to live.

 I killed her. Shot her dead.

 No, I didn't pull the trigger or aim my gun at her. There weren't any invisible forces or demons in my head that made me turn on her. In fact, quite the opposite. If I had know the consequences of my actions, of hers, I would have done anything to have stopped her from doing what she did.

 It's funny in a way. Since we started feeling something for one another, especially since we admitted what we felt, I've been scared of leaving her. The fact that I'm reckless and could get myself killed, or get her killed too kept me from even thinking about loving her. True, we've pulled out of more scrapes than should be allowed by luck alone, but getting into these things seems to be my trademark. Once I'd begun my crusade, there was no turning back and no end left but a deadly one.

 That fact was one of the reasons that had kept me from her for so long. I didn't know what would happen to her if we were involved and something happened to me. I wanted to avoid that circumstance. I wanted to protect her and myself from that possibility. I didn't want to have to look up and say goodbye to her while lying on the floor of a dirty motel room, my hands in hers.

 Like she did today.

 It should have been me.

 Sacrifice has been my life. I've been a martyr for over half my life. I never thought once about giving up that life in the pursuit of the truth. For my reasons.

 Yet I hadn't realized that my path all this time had been the easy one.

 Love and dedication is the hard path. The one she lived for the last five years, putting up with the failures and the disappointments that the X-Files and I seemed to continually hand her. Loving me unconditionally all those years when I never said a word and then so strongly when she did know. All of that ended today.

 If I think about it, she could have left at any time. After she was abducted, I thought she might. Then when her sister died, I figured she'd take it as a sign. When she was diagnosed with inoperable cancer, I was sure that she'd leave and enjoy what time she had left, especially when my attempts at finding her a cure kept coming up empty.

 Yet through it all, she stayed by me. And she survived everything, even the cancer.

 And in staying with me, she proved how much she loved me. Through every trial she was proving her dedication and love to me. And now I know she loved me enough to walk into a bullet to keep me alive.

 I saw it coming. I did. The moment we walked into the place, I felt. . . cold, I guess. As if I could tell that death was there. Of course, I was stupid enough, vain enough to believe that it was there for me, the impulsive one. So I shrugged it off. Went ahead and decided to take my chances like I always do.

 If I had known that it would claim her rather than me, I would taken her by the arm and walked us both out of here without a second thought. Would have happily taken a suspension or given up my job if it would have meant that she'd be here with me instead of lying in the morgue.

 And if she was here, I wouldn't be here in my apartment, sitting in the half-light, one hand around a bottle, the other holding her picture and my gun on the table.

 For some unfathomable reason, Skinner actually let me keep it. I wonder if he knew it wouldn't matter if he took my service weapon, since I have my back-up and personal gun at home anyhow.

 I figure by the time I set down the empty bottle, I'll be ready to pick up the gun. Then I'll be on my way to join Scully wherever she's gone.

 I guess that would be heaven. I know she believes in it, and if anyone deserves to go there, it would be here. Glancing between the slowly emptying bottle, my gun and the hidden stash of porno tapes underneath the TV, I start to question whether or not they'll even let me into heaven if I do this. Committing suicide is supposed to be a mortal sin, and if you do it you don't get into heaven, or so I understand. Maybe if I explain that I couldn't live without her they'll make an exception and let me in.

 Or maybe Scully would vouch for me our something.

 I start laughing, hysterical laughter of a man on the edge who's lost everything that means anything to him at the image of the woman I love giving St. Peter a series of rational explanations to as to why I deserve to get into heaven.

 I can feel for the guy. He wouldn't stand a chance. Just like I never did when she'd argue with me over my more ridiculous theories.

 God, I don't know how to survive without her anymore. Not like this existence is really living. I lived through her. Because of her. Now that she's gone, there's nothing left of me anyhow.

 Didn't she know that without her I would be lost? I know that this isn't what she would want me to do. That she would expect me to at least try to go on, but what choice do I really have?

 Even half-drunk I can't get the images of today's events out of my mind:

 //The dark steel barrel pointed at me//

 //The sound of Scully's voice at my side calling my name//

 //The way I felt like I froze as I considered the situation//

 //The moment she impacted against me, pushing me away//

 //The second slamming of her body into mine when the bullet ripped through her back//

 //The smell of gunpowder that stung my nose and made my eyes water//

 //The feel of her sliding through my arms, blood running over my hands in a flood//

 //The look in her eyes as she said goodbye, that told me that she was glad it was her rather than me//

 //The last words that passed her lips - that she loved me//

 //The whine of sirens drawing nearer as I held her lifeless body in my arms//

 How am I supposed to live each day with that?

 If she was here, she'd probably argue that I've lived with worse things. The trauma of having my sister kidnapped in front of me. Being subjected to the long months when I didn't know where she was when Berry kidnapped her. The months when she was dying, and there was little to nothing I could do about it but watch.

 This time, she would say, it had been quick, and that I was there with her at the last.

 And then she'd throw the last, most damning truth in my face: that she gave her life to save mine, and if I off myself now, her death was a waste.

 It's funny. I can almost hear her angry voice yelling right now, telling me off for being so stupid as to consider killing myself. That she would hate me for eternity if I pulled the trigger. If I threw away this chance she's given me to continue with the work, with my life.

 Except she doesn't know that none of it means anything without her here with me.

 But I know that even if she knew, she'd still be angry. And believe me, a pissed off Scully is nothing to be trifled with. if I've learned anything, it's that. Eternity with her angry at me isn't going to be any picnic. In fact, I think that Scully mad at me forever would be hell. Just as much as hell is living without her.

 Dropping the almost empty bottle to the floor, I reach out for my gun. It really doesn't matter if she's mad at me. At least I won't have to go on without her.

 As I grasp the gun and pull it to my temple, I lose my grip on her picture, and it slips from my fingers, smashing on the floor. All other fuzzy thoughts are put aside as I scramble to retrieve it. Her eyes stare at me through the cracked glass. And behind them I can hear her voice, feel her soul.

 She's not gone. She's with me, even now. And if I give up, give into this hopelessness, I do her a disservice. I show her what her sacrifice was worth - nothing. I trivialize her love and devotion for me.

 So I have to try and live. I can't die now. I can't join her yet.

 At least not until we can meet again on the right terms. Ones where she'll be happy to see me. When I can look her in the eyes and tell her that I did something with myself. That I lived for both of us.

 With that I set the gun aside, and start to get up and make a pot of coffee in the hopes of bringing myself back to a semblance of myself. But her picture brings me up short for a minute longer.

 I love you Scully. I miss you, and I'll miss you every single moment of each day. I promise you that I'll come to you when the time is right. Until then, I know you're watching over me, and that you're always with me in my heart.

 Wait for me.

 -End-

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