Welcome To The Harem
Marita's Plan by Medina
Summary: Marita devises a plan. Vignette. Angst.
Date sent: Wed, 8 Oct 1997 20:12:12 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Marita's Plan (1/1) VA by Medina
TITLE: Marita's Plan (1/1) VA by Medina
AUTHOR: Medina, written October 1997
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DISTRIBUTION STATEMENT: Please forward to ATXC.
Archive at Gossamer. Attach my name if archived elsewhere.
SPOILERS: Zero Sum
CONTENT WARNING: some language
LENGTH: 11 kb
SUMMARY: Marita devises a plan.
DISCLAIMER: The characters and situations of the television
program "The X-Files" are the creations and property of Chris
Carter, Fox Broadcasting, and Ten-Thirteen Productions, and have
been used without permission. No copyright infringement is
AUTHOR'S THANKS: To MA - who made several excellent
suggestions and continues to provide unflagging encouragement.
To MustangSally who showed me Marita's fridge with the picture in
"They Love Thee Not" and suggested Marita is misunderstood.
FEEDBACK: please send to firstname.lastname@example.org
Marita's Plan (1/1) VA by Medina
He has the face of a putty-skinned troll. Pitted, wrinkled cheeks
hang in thick jowly folds. His head is ever wreathed by a miasma
of smoke and his pores seep a permanent, nicotine smell that
makes my throat raw. This gargoyle is the most evil, hideous
creature I know. I hate him. I hate him almost as much as I hate
Nothing about me is real. Not my hair, not my teeth, not my nails.
Not even the name I use is the one I was christened with. Every
last thing about me is a carefully executed fiction - a lie engineered
by dark-suited men who manipulate the facts of our world as if
they were nothing more than cold marble pieces on a chess board.
A woman by the name of Marita Covarrubias once existed. I have
seen her unmarked grave and the trip was, among other things,
intended as a warning to me. She had illusions that turned out to be
completely inaccurate and that ultimately resulted in her death. I
bear her name as a constant reminder of my helplessness in the life
I have not made my choices lightly. Everyone must have a reason
for their actions and a child's future depends on mine. I have not
seen her in three years but receive, for my obedience, a grainy
surveillance photograph each Christmas to keep my reasons fresh
and my loyalties fixed. The picture lets me know, in case I have
forgotten, why I participate in this hollow life and why I am
willing to have my soul peeled away one strip at a time.
I realized long ago that I am utterly and absolutely without power.
It is a crushing state of being and has wrested from me all hope.
My life is full of despair where the single purpose of every breath
is to be one moment closer to death. Yet every day that I endure
guarantees another day of safety for my child. The little life I have
borne now gives me life in return because without her, I would
gladly exit this savage world.
I know I will never be able to win my freedom. I cannot. I am
neither in a position to ask for it nor suggest a bargain that could
win it. I have no special knowledge, no unique skill, no access to
power or networks to make me strong. I have only my sexual
favors and those are treated and traded as the base commodity I
know them to be. I have nothing that can forge a single sustaining
link towards redemption and so I must remain fully at the mercy of
Behind my back, I am called the Marita Hari. They think it is
funny. I believe it is the only joke they know. Me - a joke - what
would my sorority sisters at Bryn Mawr say? The kinder ones
might recall I always wanted to work at the UN. The others, the
ones with upturned old-money noses, would nod and say they
always knew I was a fucking whore.
Every day I live in fear of the phone ringing and it being The Troll.
When I answer, he will have some fresh new evil that will make
me twist and coil and silently repeat the name of my child until I
can submit myself to numbly obey.
But, even though almost every drop of life has been squeezed from
me, I cling to one last chance. In the endless hours of silent sitting
in that stuffy library and staring at the sharply pressed hem of a
skirt that rides high above my knees, I have devised a plan. It is a
plan that, if it works, will secure my freedom and mark my
resurrection from the living dead.
Over the course of my prolonged silences, I have become invisible
to the men in the room and I have been fortunate to hear snippets,
half-spoken hints of others who have descended to despair and
share, in some form or another, my situation. There are those who
have given up freedom in exchange for vague promises that keep
them adequately motivated for Their varying causes. I have yet to
see the Troll fulfill his end of an offer and it concerns me. It
concerns me because not only does my own freedom depend on
him but also that of my child. If I am to be free then I must take
action to secure it; my freedom will come only if of my own
As I have said, personally I am utterly without device for such a
plan. I know that if I am to be free, I must have help outside the
Consortium. The first time I realized there were others of my ilk,
others who have been trapped and tricked into service by Them,
my heart soared. Hope can do that to a person. Somewhere in this
world, my solidarity exists. Like comrades fighting side by side to
overthrow a tyrannical ruler, we will unite in a common cause.
So now I have a plan and by necessity the plan must include
another. In the end, I had only two choices.
Upon first meeting, Fox Mulder seemed to me a handsome knight
errant. He was full of vigor and passion; certainly willing to
sacrifice himself for a righteous cause yet as I began to study him,
he struck me - as my father used to say - as completely "unable to
hold his water". He is too inconstant, too hurried and blinded by
obsession. The more I considered it, the more useless I realized his
help would be. I needed someone in whom I could trust my life
and that of a child. Fox Mulder is not such a man.
So I decided on the other. The picture I see before me is of a man I
have met only once. He, like me, is under Their spell but unlike
me, he has an enviable latitude for behavior that I know no one
else has. I have discovered things about him, once again from half
spoken sentences and implied meanings. That he has a military
past, that he is without family, that he has made compromising
deals that belie his official post. Most significantly, however, I
have discovered he has something on The Troll; something
unspecified but obliquely revealed while he advised another.
"My influence is profound but not complete. Were I you, I would
act cautiously. He has many hidden talents that could prove
dangerous. Do not underestimate him." I could ask for no higher
recommendation than that.
The photograph of him does not do him justice. The angle is
awkward and his face is distorted. The light glares off his glasses
and there is a sneer on his lips as if the picture had been taken
while he was speaking in anger. In person, Mr Skinner is imposing,
self-contained and shrewd. He does not strike me as one given to
wild swings of emotion; he proceeds cautiously, with intent and,
under stress, can sustain a guise of sufficient ambiguity. To me, he
is almost perfect in every respect. His only apparent flaw is what
makes him desirable; he is true to his code of honor that I must
have him utterly break it if he is to serve my purpose.
At our first meeting in South Carolina, I fear I was anxious and I
pushed too hard for answers. Clearly he was not convinced of me
or my position. He did not trust me; I could see it in his eyes and
the way he hesitated before answering my pointed, probing
questions. The dying children provided a tragic setting; there but
for the grace of ... who? God? Them? went my own child. With
that idea dominating my thoughts, I could not contain my nerves
when I spoke to him. More than anything else, I wanted to take
him aside and *tell* him; to pour out my heart and ask for his help
though he has no reason to give it except to stay true to the honor I
suspect him of having. I am a woman in great distress yet also a
comrade in arms, held hostage by the same insidious evils that
dictate his own actions. In the end, I believe that will sway him.
But there in the Emergency Room, I was helpless. As I watched
him argue with the doctor, imploring the man to believe in his
knowledge of the Small Pox, I wished I could have told him what I
knew; that the doctor would never accept his story because He is
one of Them. It was left to this surly, seemingly arrogant doctor to
collect the primary medical data on this maniacal experiment. This
revelation might have swayed Mr Skinner to my side or at least
begun the process but I could have done nothing differently
because one of the rules is everyone is always more than they
seem. The doctor was collecting data, not only on the children but
also on me. I could not risk it. That I had Mr Skinner so close but
at such distance and unable to speak plainly was one of the darkest
moments of my life.
If I can win him to my side, he will be my ally for life. I know it.
And once united, we will form an alliance. With my inside
position in the Consortium and his many gifts we will exact our
revenge. I will do whatever is necessary to make Mr Skinner trust
me. I will be his spy, his lover, his assassin. I will become
whatever he wishes; whatever he needs. Mr Skinner is my only
hope. My child's only hope.
What will a mother ultimately do for her child? What will she do
to secure its future, its health, its safety? How fast will the
repulsive deeds she is forced to perform become commonplace?
Even mundane? How soon will her noble morality become a
variable; a sliding scale whose setting depends on circumstance
and perceived payoff? The time I have spent in the Library with
Them has desensitized me to so many things. The unspeakable,
once spoken, becomes ever easier to repeat. Things I once thought
abhorrent in the extreme, I now see can clearly serve a purpose.
But serve my purpose, not Theirs.
Upon reflection, I may have underestimated my abilities. I do have
one fledgling talent. With further observations from the masters I
obey, I may be able to develop this modest skill into a useful tool.
If I have learned nothing else from the Troll, I have learned how to
patiently wait for an opportunity, an opening, a reason to initiate a
bargain beneficial to both parties. So if all my other efforts fail to
persuade Mr Skinner to help me, I will simply bide my time and
remain alert. Eventually I will find a way to blackmail him.