03 October 1998
Author: Karen <KSoren0626@aol.com
Title: Feed My Fish 01/01
Codes: X-Files, M/S, PG-13
Post and archive: Allslash, and most anywhere else, just ask first.
Disclaimer: CC and Co. owns them. I imply no copyright infringement.
Summary: Walter's thoughts on their relationship after Mulder's undercover work in The Pine Bluff Variant.


//If you don't hear from me by midnight...feed my fish.//

Feed my fish.

Not the most romantic good-bye I've ever received, especially when it could have been permanent; but then how *do* you say good-bye to your male boss-cum-lover in front of a Justice Department spook?

Feed my fish.

Actually, his latest batch of fish belong to me. I even feed them when Fox is on one of his longer cases. I had noticed their predecessors were no longer among the living when I took Mulder home from the hospital the day after Scully's 'return from the dead'.

Actually, Fox was the one that had returned from the dead. He just made sure that Scully didn't follow him. I could almost be jealous over the devotion he has for her, but I know he would do the same thing for me.

And he has.

He could have destroyed me ten times over after finding out about my little deal with our cigarette smoking friend. He didn't, although I would imagine that it was tempting. The look when he realized that I had used his name to enter the morgue and steal the woman's body was physically painful. Trust doesn't come easy for Fox and why he trusted me after my apparent betrayal, I'm not sure. Perhaps he knew that it could so easily have been him.

He chose another road, or perhaps it was chosen for him. I hurt when I think of those horror-filled moments when he realized the extent of their little setup. Running upstairs to find out that they had been watching him for months. I hurt as I try to imagine his frantic actions, the emotions as he deliberately destroyed another man's face for his hastily planned 'suicide'. The terror of constantly looking over his shoulder for those that could have ended his efforts to save Scully.....

....that could have made his 'suicide' permanent.

Fortunately for all of us who love him, returning from the dead has become an art form for Fox. He has managed to accomplish it several times, both figuratively and physically.

Alaska. New Mexico. Virginia. Twice so far gone that he shouldn't have been able to come back. The last so far emotionally gone that it was a miracle that he hadn't followed the entire debacle with a real bullet to the brain.

He finally admitted to me the other day that he had intended exactly that. The pain of Scully telling him that she had been given cancer to make him believe had just been too much. A single phone call; a phone call that he hadn't intended to answer had changed Fox's suicide from fact to fiction, and set him on a path of death and deception in order to find a cure.

I cried when I first learned of his 'suicide'.

Then I got a good look at Scully.

Oh, she did a good job of convincing the others that the body was Mulder's. I would even venture to say that the catch in the voice and the small chin quiver were real. I mean, the stress alone would be enough to do it.

Never mind the fact that she herself was dying.

When I confronted her in the hall, she didn't break. But after many years of Scully/Mulder watching, I recognized the signs.

Fox was alive, and Scully didn't trust me as far as she could throw me with that information.

That hurt. I had risked everything to try to save her.

In order to save him.

Which would save me.

I did penance for my involvement in my own way. Notifying his mother was horrible. I wanted to tell her that it wasn't true, that for some reason he felt it necessary to do this to all the people that loved him; but at that time I didn't know just what the beautiful idiot had in mind.

Break into the DOD?

Gods, the boy is priceless. What he lacks in judgment, he more than makes up for in courage.

I've decided his taste in ties should have clued me into said lack. He may be partially color blind, but the patterns on those babies are a thumbed nose at 'The Shirts' on the top floor.

I try to tell him that it would be OK to play nice with the big boys occasionally. I mean, career suicide isn't mandatory in a quest for the truth. The brat just smiles and begins a series of nips, kisses and strokes designed to bring on short-term amnesia.

There's a lot to be said for amnesia in a relationship.

The consortium, 'The Shirts', in short the job does not enter our personal space that we share, whether it's one of our apartments, a hotel room, or a quiet moment on a park bench. We have been amazingly successful in keeping the world from encroaching unless it's an absolute emergency.

Until yesterday. When he walked out of the conference room, I had no idea if I would ever see him again. They wouldn't let me put a tail on him even though the militia already had its doubts. I wanted to kill when I found out that they had broken his fucking finger just to see if he was telling the truth.

//terrorist lie detector...//

It came so close to going bad. As it was, fourteen innocent people had died, a bank had been robbed, and the Justice spook had known way more than he had ever let on. I thought Scully was going to kill him.

Instead we went home.

Fox was damned near comatose by the time we got back from Harrisburg. I halfway expected Scully to insist on driving us home, but she quietly kissed his cheek and disappeared into traffic jam that is DC.

Scully.

She's so different from the fresh young skeptic that Blevins was going to use to destroy Mulder's work. I don't think he realized the extent of her strength, courage, and sheer tenacity that has since become her main contribution to their work.

Sure she's a brilliant pathologist. A pragmatic little bloodhound that can rival Mulder in deduction. But after six years, after all she has seen, Scully still hesitates in accepting what is out there.

Like I'm one to talk.

My biggest fear is that one of these days our doubts, Scully's and mine, are going to get Fox killed.

Did I mention her stubbornness? I've decided not to mention that her dedication almost got Mulder killed. He told me a while ago about her visit to his apartment and his resulting 'execution'.

Another return from the dead.

A cat has nine lives. How many does a fox have?

I have no answer. I can only love him. I can only try to protect him in any way that I can, and extend that precious life for as long possible. He says that my love has given him a reason to be more careful in his work. He also says that my efforts to keep him safe are sweet.

Sweet. Sometimes I'm surprised that Scully has only shot him the one time.

It is dark now. We lie in the hush and the peace that follows heated passion. He's finally asleep with that boneless laxity that comes from being well and thoroughly loved.

I had listened as he cried; releasing the terror of kneeling in that abandoned nursery with a gun to the back of his head expecting to die, and the stunned disbelief that the one he feared the most was an unexpected ally.

I did the only thing that I could do under the circumstances; offering my quiet reassurances of love; my kisses and caresses, my body for his possession.

As he has done so often for me.

It's amazing how well we fit together considering the damage life has visited on us. We both have demons, but they have different faces. His come as the abuse of a father, the drugged indifference of a mother, and the loss of a sister who had been his anchor in life.

Mine come swiftly and painfully, reminding me of the death and destruction of all my friends in a hot jungle long ago; of watching my own death there along side them. Other demons that wear all-too familiar faces, smoke cigarettes and force me to go against my very nature.

Forced me to betray the only one who truly trusts me.

I don't know how long we have together. The lives we have chosen are dangerous and the ones who rule our lives are unforgiving of a love such as ours.

But we have now, and after today, I know that if I'm ever forced to choose between the FBI and Fox, the FBI will not stand a chance.

I believe that he feels the same way.

He's looking at me now. Those sleep filled hazel eyes don't miss a thing. He says nothing, just smiles and then kisses me so deeply that I could come just from that single kiss. I know what he wants, and believe me I want it too. I grin as I remember the chocolate syrup in the refrigerator. Fox loves surprises, especially ones that end up with both of us thoroughly debauched.

"Where are you going?" The eyes are a vivid green now.

"Oh...just to feed the fish."

The End
c1998 Karen (KSoren0626@aol.com)