Welcome To The Harem
Death Becomes Her by MystPhile
Summary: Post-Amor Fati, Scully knows more about Diana than she reveals to Mulder.
Date: 16 Nov 1999 23:08:21 GMT
Subject: NEW: Death Becomes Her by MystPhile post AFati
TITLE: Death Becomes Her
Distribution: Gossamer, Ephemeral, Spooky, Xemplary.
Others, yes, but please ask.
SUMMARY: Post-Amor Fati, Scully knows more about Diana
than she reveals to Mulder.
Category: Post-Ep, V, UST
Spoilers: Amor Fati
Disclaimers: Not mine; property of 1013
Feedback: Very welcome.
Web page: http://members.xoom.com/MystPhile/
courtesy of Beaker.
also at Xemplary and at Galia's site:
I stood on the threshold of Mulder's apartment, confused and
tearful, my world rocked once again by what he told me of
Albert's death. But I had my own news about death to convey. I
struggled to select the right words.
I, having found my partner, was losing it. The bricks had
crumbled, leaving me with just one truth to cling to, and he was
standing in front of me, his eyes warm with sympathy. He was the
one who'd had his brain invaded, yet *I* sometimes felt as if I were
losing my head.
I hoped that my words wouldn't smother the warmth of his eyes.
He looked so happy to be alive, free, in command of his faculties
again, reinvested in our mission. But I had to tell him. Better
me than someone else, someone who might . . . tell him too much.
He wasn't ready; I knew that. I drew breath and hoped my words
would not wound him too deeply. They would cost me a great deal,
but, hey, I've already paid so much that I'm bankrupt twice over.
"Diana Fowley was found murdered this morning," I told him,
knowing that he would want me to get right to the point. His
face showed surprise, but not grief.
"I never trusted her," I admitted, my words rattling around my
mouth, fighting to make their way out. I intended to give her
her just due. She meant something to him once; why further soil
her memory, especially when she *did* come through, when it was
too late. I swallowed my bitterness and went on.
"But she helped save your life, just as much as I did." Those
words burned and they cost me--big-- but in a sense, they were
true. Without the key, where would Mulder be right now? "She
gave me that book." He knew what I was talking about. We'd
spent a great deal of the week sharing our experiences,
selectively on both sides, I have no doubt. Just as I was doing
"It was her key that led me to you. I'm sorry." This was true.
I didn't want to bring Mulder more pain, this man who carried on
his shoulders burdens both assumed and thrust upon him. I sighed
inwardly. In a sense, he was born to them. My association with
him was my only ticket to this grim party. The burdens were
entirely thrust upon me. But, this was not my sorrow, right now.
I was conveying to him that someone who'd once been a significant
part of his life was gone. And I truly did feel sorry. For him.
God knows he's had enough losses for ten men.
"I'm so sorry," I continued. "I know she was your friend."
The words were carefully chosen. The woman is dead, and I want
to get on with things. Obviously, there are still threats out
there, discoveries to be made, fights to fight. No need to get
into all she really was. Which was complex. Nothing is ever
simple with us.
I searched Mulder's eyes again. He looked surprised, sorry. But
his expression conveyed nothing, really, about how he felt.
Suddenly, I could take no more. This whole experience had been
so exhausting. I was sure I'd lost him, dreading that his mind
could not possibly recover. And here I was, bearer of ill
tidings, giving my partner a simplified version of this morning's
news. The games, the dark purposes that slithered eel-like
around us--I was so tired of it all. My own lack of candor
weighing on me, I reached up to hug Mulder, to offer him comfort
His arms pulled me close so that I was tight against his body. I
could feel his hands on my back, rubbing and soothing. I had
come to tell him of his former, uh, something's, death, and he,
from what I could feel, was comforting me. Or maybe he was just
glad to feel another warm body against his. Life, not death.
I wept again. For both of us. We'd come through again, but at
what cost. And now, I was doing what Mulder had done so many
times for me. Or to me. I could never tell. But I withheld the
full truth. I knew much more about Fowley and her intentions
than I'd just said. But what was the point, really, in telling
all to Mulder. Maybe, I thought, sobbing for yet another time,
another trauma, that's how he felt about my stolen ova. Do we
really want to make each other miserable when nothing can be
As I wept, as he comforted me, the events of the past week slid
through my brain like a fast-forwarded film. Every once in a
while, the Pause button would cause a freeze frame, and I would
study the pictures of Fowley.
One was before I found Mulder, back at the Bureau, when we
mutually decided to cut the crap. That conversation cost me
dearly. I wanted to throttle her, squeeze the truth from her
skinny throat. But I think--I hope-- my words were a factor in
her actions. "Think of Mulder when you met him." Oh, I wish I
could have seen him then. Seen him before he'd gone through
these years of fruitless searching. When he still had a choice.
Possibilities were his, then. They were also mine. Doors have
been slammed shut all around us.
"Think of him now, and then try to stand there in front of me,
look me in the eye, and tell me he wouldn't bust his ass to save
I don't know if that approach worked. We both know of Mulder's
loyalty. How he remained loyal to her far longer than logic or
good sense dictated. Could she be made to feel guilty?
Apparently, she could. Not guilty enough to step in and save him
from brain surgery. Not guilty enough to ensure that he would
live afterwards. But guilty enough to slip me the key. Bet his
life that I would understand what it was and get there on time.
She laid it off on me. I think she had a habit of laying off
responsibility altogether. For a woman with such an air of
confidence, she had amazingly little in herself, in her own
beliefs. She was easily led, I think. Led right to her death.
I got there. It was one of the worst moments of my life, walking
in there thinking he might be dead. Or, possibly even worse,
brain damaged. Mulder was hardly able to move. The man had
undergone brain surgery and been left alone. It boggled the mind
and caused smoke to pour from my ears. I called an ambulance and
had him moved to Georgetown, the proper ward this time.
I kept all questionable people away from him, not even permitting
his mother to be alone with him. She protested weakly, but the
fire in my eyes quieted her soon enough, and she skittered back
to her lair. Luckily, the part of his brain that had been
invaded was right on the surface, and those bastards had used
He was home in an amazingly short time, even in these days of
managed care, and I spent hours with him every day, as we
recounted our experiences. We were both careful, I think, to
offer little dollops of information at a time. We could see that
both of us were beat, at the end of our ropes, and too much too
soon would set us back. We measured out the information in
tablespoons, interspersed with just talking.
We really talked, about our childhoods, our college days, where
we'd like to travel. I like to think we used part of the week as
a vacation. We spent many hours away from the X-Files,
recovering ourselves and our connection.
Part of the information I did not convey to Mulder during that
time concerned Fowley. The day after I took him to the hospital,
I stepped outside his room to look for a coffee machine. At that
point, I was going on sheer adrenaline and caffeine, having been
up for the longest period I can remember since being a resident.
As I walked down the corridor, a door to a stairway cracked open.
A throat cleared. I immediately went on Red Alert, not wishing
to lose him again. I swiveled so fast I almost missed glimpsing
her pale face, peering cautiously through the crack with naked
desperation writ large.
This had better not be a trap, I thought, as I approached her.
If it is, by God, I'm killing the bitch this time. I don't care
what she once meant to him. If he doesn't know what's good for
him, well, I'll take care of it. Take care of her. With murder
in my eyes, I approached her.
She was terrified, but not of my murderous self. "Be quiet," she
hissed. "Is anyone out there? Anyone at all?"
I looked down the corridor, which was empty, even of medical
personnel. This might be because she chose 3 a.m. to make her
"What the fuck do you want?" I snarled as I reached the door.
"Haven't you done enough already? You here to try again?" My
linguistic gloves were off this time. I was tired, as I said in
drastic understatement, and besides, I didn't have any motivation
to be nice to her this time, to make a heartfelt appeal. I had
Mulder back. Safe, on the road to recovery.
She yanked me through the doorway so quickly I stumbled and she
actually prevented me from flying down the stairs. I took a firm
grip on the railing and studied her. She looked like hell. Her
eyes were haunted. Or were they hunted? Her clothes were
wrinkled and stained while her hair was a wild tangle. Her usual
careful makeup was worn off, leaving an aging, haggard face with
lines deeply etched around mouth and eyes.
"How is he?" she whispered.
"Do you care?" I returned coldly. I had spent months putting up
with this woman, and Mulder had been able to speak enough to
convey that Fowley was one of Them. He hadn't condemned her for
it, but he clearly knew that she was not the loyal person he had
mistaken her for. She had been at the surgery, he said. He
could remember little else, but he did remember her standing over
him. I hated her. For this, for her general betrayal, for. .
.just being treacherous, evil.
"I do care," she said in a low voice. "You know, apparently,
where I stood. But I . . .stood with Fox as well. I. . . got
caught in the middle." She stared into my eyes. "I didn't want
him to die."
"Then why not pull out your gun and stop the surgery?" I snarled.
She gave a pitying head shake. "You really are too good for this
particular world," she said, a faint smile touching her pale
lips. "I'd be dead in five seconds, and the surgery would go
on." She paused, set her lips. "I did what I could," she told
me. "Gave you the book, sent you the key." She leaned against
the wall, looking as if her long legs were about to fold. "It's
all I could afford. More than I could afford."
I looked at her with fresh eyes. "And now you're afraid of
"Turn state's evidence. We can protect you," I suggested.
"I wouldn't last two hours," she said in a dead voice. "They can
get to me anywhere I go."
"Why not try?" I urged her. "Talk to me. If you're going to
die, don't die in vain. Give me the information. Let's get it
on videotape, everything you know."
She stood against the wall, thinking. Slowly, she shook her
head. "You would be amazed how little I know," she said. "These
men are too clever to speak in much more than generalities." She
grimaced. "And if I don't talk, my death will be quick and
painless. If they think I've talked, it'll be long. Very long."
She paused. "I might be smart to put a bullet through my brain
and save them the trouble."
I leaned against the rail watching a woman in despair. "You can
be a force for good," I said. "Speak. Then, if you like, walk
away and do what you need to do."
She shook her head. "The way they work, I'd be taken before two
words left my mouth." She tossed me a grim smile. "I expect
this stairwell to be bombed. Better get out while you can."
Graveyard humor from Fowley. Who would ever have thunk it, I
reflected. She'd stood by and watched them invade Mulder's
brain. She'd stayed on the scene for a year, working against us
while trying to draw Mulder into her web. She was the Spider
Woman, yet I was having trouble hating her at that moment.
"I could have gotten there too late. He could have died," I
said. "If you're going to sacrifice, why not make sure?"
"I was sure of you," she said. I struggled not to feel
complimented at the statement of a traitorous bitch.
"You didn't sound sure the other day," I pointed out. "You said
I should think what I could have done to prevent those things
from happening to Mulder."
"You could," she said with a bitter twist to her mouth. "You had
his confidence, much more than I ever did. You should have led
him away from danger."
"Lead Mulder from danger?" I said incredulously. "It pulls him
like a magnet."
"It's in his genes," she allowed. "But you should distract him
more. Use your assets. You could exert much more control.
Trust me, it's possible."
I didn't want to hear this. "Manipulate him sexually," I
She turned to go down the stairs. "Love him," she tossed over
"Like you did?" I hissed at her retreating body.
"Fuck you," floated up the stairs.
Those were Fowley's last words to me. Is it any wonder I didn't
want to share them with Mulder. Sometimes sharing the whole
truth is not wise.
I saw her once more, this morning. I was called, early, to the
Watergate. I'd stayed late at Mulder's the night before talking
of my med school days while he talked of playing on the beach as
a child. Turns out we both like to sail. It was a great
evening, with the gap between us closing to a narrow slit. So, I
was tired when the call came in, but the words sent me speeding
to the Watergate complex.
The picture was not a pretty one. I have seen horrors, of
course, many of them. But it is particularly gruesome to see a
woman you knew in such a state. I don't know if I'll ever erase
the picture from my mind. She was right, I thought. She should
have put a bullet through her brain.
I think the sight will be engraved in my mind forever, one of the
bloodiest crime scenes I have ever witnessed. As I stood in
Mulder's arms, I knew that I was scheduled to do the autopsy in
an hour, and I dreaded it. Yet, I felt I should do this for her.
I felt, in some weird way, that I owed it to her.
No wonder I wept in Mulder's arms after telling him of her death.
Yes, I finessed the truth a bit. But there would be plenty of
time for him to hear of her sufferings. He didn't need to know
that immediately. He still had his own sufferings to come to
Yet, generously, he was more concerned with mine. I was weeping
for all of us, really. Our sad fates. I'd wanted to comfort
him, yet he seemed more distressed at my tears than by Fowley's
death. He did not leap into a eulogy for his former friend. Of
course, by then, he knew that she'd been disloyal. When I said
to him, "I know she was your friend," the operative word was *was*,
and both of us knew that. I'd wanted to reassure him that,
despite her actions, she still felt concern for him, that she'd
done something to try to save him despite the shattering
But he spoke of me. He caressed me. He gazed at me with eyes
full of love and understanding. Our sinsick souls drew as close
as our bodies. "You told me the truth," he said. "Even when the
world was falling apart, you were my constant."
My heart lifted, then dipped with regret that just as he admired
my truth telling qualities, I had omitted much of the truth about
Diana Fowley and her death. Some truths are best left unspoken,
and some should be delayed until their proper season.
"You help me." That's what he said as he came back to himself.
Yes. We must help each other. We will help each other. That's
what I thought as I kissed him, long and lovingly. We must help
each other to heal, to be whole.
And then, regretfully, I left to autopsy what was left of the
body of Diana Fowley. He knew I would be back that night.
Perhaps, by then, I would be ready to share more truths with him.