TITLE: The Mix Tape Biographies: A Year in Words
AUTHOR: winter baby
FANDOM: The X-Files
CHARACTERS: Mulder/Scully, Doggett/Reyes, Follmer/Reyes, Skinner
SPOILERS: Release, The Truth
SUMMARY: Six characters in 155 words, one year later.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: The title challenge, gacked from LJ's sunday100 community. They wanted Buffy drabbles based on titles from McSweeney's list. I wrote XF in a series of 155 words. Go figure. All titles come from McSweeney's list, some with minor changes. Originally they were "Marcel Duchamp: The Mix Tape Biography" and "A Year in Words That Sound Like Pasta Shapes When Pronounced as Such." But I like mine better.
+  The Mix Tape Biographies  +
A Year in Words
[ Mulder ]
Sentences I Wish I Hadn't Written
Two years later, they come back to him. She printed and kept them all, every e-mail he'd written her while on the run, each starting like a love letter but ending on the same note – he's run away.
He said things like, "Dearest Dana," or "I'm doing this to protect William," or "It's safer this way."
The e-mails were tucked into her dayplanner, a remnant from before. The last entry dates a year ago. All it says is "Pick up groceries."
She comes into their motel room, holding a bag of instant food and cheap hair dye. She's blonde now, has been for months. He still can't get used to it.
A car drives by. She tenses, peers out the window cautiously.
"Mulder," she says, "I think it's time we left."
She starts packing quickly, efficiently, from years of practice.
When her back is turned, he throws the e-mails out.
They leave before morning comes.
[ Follmer ]
Actual Answers to the Question "What or Who is the Greatest Love of Your Life?" That Were Not, to My Surprise, "You"
Sometimes it's easy to forget, he's killed a man.
The official story said it was in defense of Doggett's life, but that's only the official story.
Doggett was grateful, enough to lie for him but not enough to stop sleeping with his ex-girlfriend.
But Monica wasn't a girlfriend, not really.
A year later, he's still AD, overlooked for promotion again but he's not surprised. A year later, he's still sleeping with a subordinate but not the one he wants. That doesn't surprise him either.
He hardly sees Monica, now that she's living with Doggett. Whenever he does spot her, she's always with him, holding his hand when she thinks nobody's watching. Calling him "John" instead of "Agent" during meetings and debriefings.
It's unprofessional, he thinks, but how easily he forgets fucking her behind closed office doors, years ago.
Monica passes him in the hallway and she smiles at him, briefly.
He doesn't forget, not really.
[ Doggett ]
Thirteen Fraudulent Martyrs
He keeps a list in his head of all the things Mulder and Scully have given up.
The basement office. Their careers. Their parents. Melissa. Emily. Samantha. The Lone Gunmen. William.
One last chance at happiness.
For them he investigates every X-file and follows every lead. He'll find a way to make it safe for them to come home.
Monica says he's working too hard. He kisses her and tells her it's all right. She says, "Come home," and sometimes he does, but mostly he tracks down shadow men, uncovers conspiracies, searches.
He does this for Mulder and Scully, but he's doing it for himself too. He wants Monica to be safe. He wants whatever children they have to be safe.
He hasn't told her that part yet.
An anonymous tip leads him to Texas. Monica says, "Come home," but there's too much to be done.
He doesn't keep a list of his own sacrifices.
[ Skinner ]
Spelling Words with "K"
She says her name is Katie, her friend's is Kieran. They've had too much to drink, are holding hands and leaning into him just so he can see glimpses of soft, round breasts.
They say words like "kiss" and "kneel," but he's not really listening, not with their hands sliding over his biceps and up each other's legs.
"FBI," they coo, impressed with his AD status. He pays for their drinks and all three stumble into his car. For the first time he thinks there's not enough room in his SUV.
Kieran and Katie, he doesn't remember which is which, call him G-man as they kiss and kneel. He doesn't bother mentioning he hasn't been a G-man for at least a year.
Exposing conspiracies while defending a condemned man will do that to your career.
He tells himself he doesn't need one, not when he's got sex and booze, Katie and Kieran, kissing and kneeling.
[ Reyes ]
The Only Thoughts I Remember Crossing My Mind Today
She thinks she's losing her mind – misplacing her keys, locking herself out, missing appointments.
John teases her, calls her scatterbrained and disappears into the stacks of X-files. He'll make it safe, he says, so that they can come back. She looks up from her desk and can't understand what he's fighting for.
She leaves before him, returns to a big empty house, wonders how living with a man actually means she's living alone.
Eight o'clock, she can't find the remote and instead lies in bed. She doesn't plan on waiting up for him but knows she will.
Ten forty, all she can think of is how she's lost her favorite necklace. How she's searched their big empty house. How she can't remember the last time he kissed her.
Two thirty, his car pulls up. He slides into bed and whispers her name, wanting her.
She pretends to be sleeping, because she's forgotten how to answer.
[ Scully ]
Things I Would Often Think About While at Church
She shouldn't be here.
Mulder says having a routine only increases their chances of getting caught, but he doesn't try to stop her. Besides, she never goes to the same church twice. Every town it's a different building, a different pew, a different life she can pretend she's living.
She could be a schoolteacher, or a nurse. She could be the farmer's wife who lives on the outskirts, who only comes into town for Sunday mass. She'd wear light sundresses, tie her fake-blonde hair in a bun. The townspeople would whisper rumors about her, but it wouldn't matter because afterwards she'd go home to her husband, a man of hard work, strong morals, steadfast love.
She can't imagine Mulder as a farmer, but husband is even harder.
The priest recites the Benediction. She leaves before receiving blessings, returning to Mulder at the motel.
He smiles, kisses her, smells like early mornings and the good earth.
[ end ]
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