I Said I Loved You...

By Jeannine Ackerson

 

7/13/97

Rating: PG for language.

Disclaimer: The X-Files and its' characters are property of C.C., FOX & 1013 Prod., etc. "Said I Loved You. . . But I Lied" is by Michael Bolton. All of these things are used without permission.

Relationship: MSR with a dash of Mulder and Scully angst.

Summary: Mulder tells Scully that he loves her, then takes it back.

Hi all! Well, as you know, I listen with the heart of a shipper to the songs on the radio, and I heard this one and knew it had M&S angst/MSR written all over it. (who knew Michael Bolton watched X-Files? <g>) Anyway, here's my take. Now, on to the story. . .

He said the words.

There was no question to it. She had heard them come from his lips and felt them pierce her soul. She couldn't believe it. . .

Just a few minutes ago she thought she was dead. As surely as she was standing there, she had seen her death coming at her until Mulder appeared out of nowhere and knocked her to the floor of the apartment complex. Moments later, the shooter was dead, shot in the back by one of the other agents that had gone in with them.

Mulder had hauled her up, into his embrace and they'd stared at each other, eyes connected along with their hearts and souls, totally oblivious to the noise and activity around them.

Then he'd opened his mouth and gently said the words she never thought he would ever say to her verbally.

It was everything she could have ever wanted or wished for. But she just could not believe he'd *said* it. That he'd *meant* it.

"You *love* me?" she asked with an incredulous tone, her hands shaking even as she held onto his arms.

"I. . ." Mulder stammered.

He was at a loss for words. Now that he'd spoken the phrase he'd sworn he'd never speak, he was at a quandary as to what to do now. He could see so much emotion in her face. The usually stoic Scully had become vulnerable at his declaration. Within her eyes he could see the love shining back at him. . .

And he was afraid. Scared to death of actually, of possibly having what he wanted so badly. Of not being equal to the task of loving her. That she'd realize now that he really wasn't worth loving.

So he'd did something stupid.

He took it back.

"I. . . I didn't mean it like *that* Scully," he stuttered, sounding like a lost child.

There was a moment where she thought she'd heard him wrong. Couldn't perceive the words coming out of his mouth. But she looked at him and saw the discomfort in his face. His body had stiffened in her arms and she saw that he meant it. She slipped from his arms in near horror.

He watched as her face fell and a light within her eyes extinguished. He could swear the shattering of her heart was almost audible to him. Suddenly he realized the magnitude of what he'd done, and began to open his mouth to explain, but she threw up a hand to stop him.

"No. It's ok Mulder. I misunderstood. You love me like a friend. I just. . . never mind," she told him icily, then turned and walked quickly away from him, passing the other agents and law enforcement members in her single-minded pursuit of escape.

She kept walking, keeping her head up even as the tears that she'd fought until she'd turned her back on him tracked down her face. She wouldn't let him see them. Wouldn't let him know what those simple, careless words had done to her.

He stood there, stunned for a moment. Then when the shock had worn off, he hurried to catch up with her, nearly knocking over a few agents in his haste. Somehow she sensed his approach and she sped up.

Mulder ran.

He knew what was going on. She wouldn't face him, at least not now. Not until she could bring her mask back into place. Stare him in the eye and not flinch as she told him again that she understood. That it was and she was "fine". Even if she wasn't.

Damn it!

He didn't want that. He'd *wanted* to tell her how he felt. He'd been scared to death that he hadn't gotten her to the floor fast enough, that she'd been shot. When he finally pulled her up to him, he'd been so ecstatic that she was alive and in his arms that he'd let it slip.

Then his fear kicked in and he tried to cover for himself. So he'd lied to her. He'd said he didn't mean it when he did, more than anything. But as usual, he'd screwed up. Big time.

Before he could stop her, she was in her car, slammed the door shut, locked it and turned over the engine. Then without looking back, she drove off, leaving Mulder behind, surrounded by invisible clouds of exhaust fumes and guilt.

As he watched her car turn and disappear, his head dropped down as he sunk into a crouch as the weight of what he'd done, what he'd destroyed, fully hit him.

Scully had spent the rest of the day wondering where and when she could transfer within the Bureau. After today. . . there was no going back to the X-Files.

She didn't think she could look him in the eye and lie to him again about how she felt. The emotions that the first declaration had brought up within her were so powerful she didn't think she could bury them anymore.

And the negative feelings his second statement had brought out were equally as strong. Powerful enough for her to run from him. To keep him from seeing how hurt she was at his words. Or more precisely the denial of his words.

How could he have said them if he didn't mean them? Was it just a perverse joke to him to look at her and then speak the words she'd longed to hear just to take them back moments later?

She sighed heavily and decided that she'd consider her options later. Right now she needed a hot cup of tea to relax.

Not like she really could with the thoughts of Mulder running through her mind.

Since she'd been home, the phone had rung a few times, but when her machine came on, the caller hung up. It didn't matter though. She knew it was him. Checking up on her. Making sure 'good old Scully' was going to be in the office first thing tomorrow to help him chase down little gray men from other planets.

How could she make him understand that there was no way that she could face him again. . . at least until she had her heart carefully packed back up into the box she'd had it in for the last three years.

And made herself forget the words he'd said to her.

Slamming the door to the basement office shut, Mulder stalked into the room, glaring and fuming. With a burst of self-directed fury he threw his jacket across the room, letting it crumple to the floor.

How the hell could he have been so stupid?

He'd dreamed of telling her that he loved her more times than he could count. And when he finally did it, he'd gotten so frightened about how she would take it, that she could feel the same, he had panicked and told her a lie, he thought as he stalked around his office.

Now, would she believe the truth?

God, he didn't know if she was even speaking to him yet. She hadn't come back to the office, and when he'd tried to call her, he had hung up after her answering machine switched on. He hadn't left a message because he knew she wouldn't pick up. And because he didn't know quite what to say.

Why did you say *it*? Why did you take it back? he asked himself angrily as he ran a hand through his hair. After wanting to get the courage to do it, you finally say something, then you run for cover like a scared rabbit.

Or *scarred* rabbit to be more precise. It wasn't like he was whole and all. The truth was that he was damaged, he'd been emotionally crippled since age twelve. And his life after then had done nothing but reinforce that.

The thought of Scully actually loving him back more than shocked him. It terrified him. It was one thing to dream, but to have that dream a possibility, a reality. . .

Looking around the empty office, he realized that if he passed on the chance he'd been offered, he would never have another opportunity. There was a certain self-fulfilling prophesy about not being happy or being able to love when you refused to take chances.

And he needed her too much to not take that chance.

Especially when he knew that he had nothing to lose, really.

At that he found his jacket and headed for his car. And from there, Scully's apartment.

Mulder arrived at her doorstep and mentally balked at his plan for the hundredth time. He knew she wouldn't open the door for him voluntarily, so he abused the privilege of having her apartment key.

Inside, she turned at the sound of the door and her mask came up, etched with fine lines of pain. Tea cup still clutched in her hand, she watched Mulder as he opened her door and locked eyes with her. She didn't even get her mouth open before he answered her unvoiced remark.

"I need to talk to you," he said cautiously, as he cautiously walked into the tiger's lair. For to him right now, she was as dangerous as one.

"What more do you have left to tell me Mulder. I think what you said today was more than enough for one day," she said coldly as he walked right up to her.

"Everything I said today was true Scully," he insisted, taking her by her shoulders.

"I already know that Mulder. Why are you here telling me this again?" she said almost angrily, her control fading.

"Because you misunderstood me. And because I lied."

Her eyes came up and locked on his. The surprise there astonished him. God, he'd been so stupid. She'd *wanted* to hear the words he'd uttered today badly. As much as he'd wanted to say them. Now he had to find a way to repair the damage of what he'd done. He needed to make her understand the true depth of his feelings for her.

"You didn't let me finish earlier. What I said about not loving you like *that*. . . I said it because I've never felt like *this* before. Because it scares me a little. No, scratch that, it scares me a *lot*. I've been in love before, and this. . . well *this* is so much more powerful . . ." he said, finally giving vent to all his emotions.

She stared at him, eyes wide and mouth open. It seemed to her that he was telling her. . . but, could he mean it?

"But you said. . ." she began, her mind spinning.

"What else could I say? There were all those agents there, and you were looking at me, and I got so scared that you didn't love me. Then I saw that you did, in your eyes, and I could see this incredibly powerful thing between us and I couldn't handle it. It was too much. And I panicked," Mulder admitted.

"I thought. . ." she whispered with the sound of tears in her voice.

"Yeah, well you're stupid Dana Scully," Mulder said sweetly, running his hand over her cheek, his fingers slipping under her chin and then across her mouth. "I've loved you for so long, so hard, I don't know how you never *knew*."

Mulder hadn't noticed in his attempts to get her to listen to reason that the radio in her apartment was on. A commercial was just finishing and then some heart wrenching notes filtered their way to him, catching in his ears.

Mulder smiled as he heard the tune. The suddenly as the lyrics began, Scully heard Mulder's voice joining that of the singer - Michael Bolton. And she realized that there was an emotion in his voice that was lacking in Bolton's. A *realness* that Mulder had in the way he said the words.

Because Mulder was really feeling them, because he was *saying* them to *her*.

"You are the candle and love's the flame

A fire that burns in wind and rain

Shine your light on this heart of mine

Till the end of time

You came to me like the dawn through the night

Just shinin' like the sun

Out of my dreams and into my life

You are the one

You are the one

I said I loved you but I lied

'Cause this is more than love I feel inside

I said I loved you but I was wrong

'Cause love could never ever feel so strong

I said I loved you but I lied"

Mulder's voice fell silent as his eyes bored into hers, his soul searching there for hers. Looking in the bluish-green windows for that one spark. . .

And finally he saw what he was looking for.

Belief.

And love.

So he continued again to give voice to his emotions in the words of the songwriter who must have known love like this. Known how he felt about the woman who stood before him.

"With all my soul I've tried in vain

How can mere words my heart explain

This taste of heaven, so deep, so true

I found in you

So many reasons, in so many ways

My love has just begun

Need you forever and I need you to stay

You are the one

You are the one

I said I loved you but I lied

'Cause this is more than love I feel inside

I said I loved you but I was wrong

'Cause love could never ever feel so strong

I said I loved you but I lied"

Scully watched him as his voice fell silent again, the music the only sound in the room besides their breathing.

She hadn't thought that he'd lied to her. It hadn't even occurred to her when he'd taken his words back that he might be scared of her, of how he felt about her.

And now she knew that even though he felt that way, he wasn't willing to let his fears rob him of their chance. He was willing to give it his all, and she could do no less than the same.

Taking his hands in hers, she drew him into her arms, holding him close as Michael Bolton finished expressing Mulder's words and thoughts for him.

"You came to me like the dawn through the night

Just shinin' like the sun

Out of my dreams and into my life

You are the one

You are the one

I said I loved you but I lied

'Cause this is more than love I feel inside

I said I loved you but I was wrong

'Cause love could never ever feel so strong

I said I loved you but I lied"

Pulling back once the last word faded way, she looked up at him. Her hand came up and caressed his cheek as she felt the lump lodge in her throat with the emotions she was feeling. God, she loved him more than she could say. And now they truly belonged to one another.

She finally broke the silence.

"You lied. . ."

"The one time that the truth was vitally important to us, and I lied," he admitted.

Without thinking, she gave him a radiant smile. One that spoke to him of promises and truths and faith. Everything he could ever have asked for was there, in Dana Scully, waiting for him to claim.

"I love you Scully."

"I love you too Mulder," she informed him at last, then added for his understanding, "and I forgive you for lying to me."

Then it was his turn to smile at her, a wry grin that spoke of his thankfulness and devotion.

"Now that we have that clear, can I kiss you? I mean, I have been waiting three years to do it, so. . ." Mulder whispered in a honey-coated voice that set her soul on fire.

"Yes," she said with a passionately low tone that had his blood coursing.

Without another thought or delay, he leaned down to meet her lips, completing the verbal pact they'd made. The rest, the dynamics could wait. For now, they were whole.

-End-

Well, another happy ending. I mean, what's the good of writing fiction if you can't have a happy ending every time? <g> J.

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