Title: Satin and Lace.
Spoilers/Time: Sixth Season.
Summary: Scully and Mulder are expected to attend a commendations dinner and dance, well-dressed and on-time. Their real task is to stand guard for the Director of the F.B.I.
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Disclaimers: All X-Files characters and the title belong to Chris Carter, 1013 Productions and Fox Studios. The Director was not Mueller because he was not the F.B.I. Director at the time the Season occurred. Besides, I made this director up out of pixels.
As they are partners, they are invited together. Will either of them attend? And is Mulder really the kind of guy who's into these functions? He is when he begins to wonder how Scully will show up at the event!
"Memo: Special Agents D. Scully and F. Mulder. From: da-da-da-da-usual stuff... blah-blah. Subject: Annual Commendations Dinner and Dance.
Every year several agents are asked not only to attend this function but to act as security for the Director. Your presence is requested to attend the Annual Commendations Dinner and Dance after the Ceremony, and to providesurveillance and ssafety for the Director. You are expected to wear formal attire and be as inconspicuous in the role as possible.
November 25th at 8:00 p.m. will be your duty start time.
This is an order.
Walter Skinner, Assistant Director."
Scully put the memo back onto the desk she shared with Mulder and tapped her toes with her arms folded. "Formal attire, and security duty. Well, I've managed to miss it for six years, how much longer did you expect YOUR luck to last?"
"At least until I retired, Scully. Well, they provide me with a rental tux You, on the other hand, will choose a dress and bill them for it. It's in two weeks. Better start looking. You get to keep it, too."
"So, I get a dress at their expense. Well, I like my suits."
"They insist on dresses for the ladies at this event. It gives it a very formal atmosphere. Besides, this means no assignments for us until after the ceremonies. Think of it as a great way to cap off a vacation, even though we'll be here every day, filing and accounting for things unaccounted for. Then there's the crime stats. meetings, the compassion seminar, the fitness and nutrition demo. for law enforcement officers... "
"Mulder, do you honestly want to go to this?"
"Not if I can possibly avoid it. Scully, I hate these things!"
Scully smiled. "I'd rather have a splitting headache or an abcessed tooth. But, I guess it is our duty. Besides, I might like to see you in a tuxedo."
"Yeah, right. Been there, done that, been uncomfortable, you saw, you believed. So, how about a very silky, lacy formal gown for you, hmm?"
"Not even for the Director and the honorees?"
"I will consult my informants and see what I can come up with, Mulder. Now stop teasing me. I need the Rice file to sum up the expenses..."
TWO WEEKS LATER
November 26, 7:oo p.m.,
Dana Scully's Apartment.
Stain and lace, wasn't so bad, after all, Scully decided. Her Royal blue, calf-length dress felt silky to the touch, and the matching lace around the scoop neckline wasn't itchy as long as she wore thick lotion. As a matter of fact, she was rather enjoying the view as she checked her appearance in the full-length mirror. Sheer, flesh-tone stockings were a must as she had to keep her gun somewhere, so why not spring for garters out of her own funds? As she donned the dangly earrings she had been saving, the doorbell rang.
"Mulder. If he says ONE thing to get me going... "
Mulder just walked in as he usually did, called out her name, and waited for his colleague to appear. He really couldn't help wondering what could make this woman more lovely than she already was, but he did think she would be stunning. "Hey, Scully! If I knew you looked like THIS in a dress like that I would have asked you to the prom... "
"We didn't attend the same school, and I wasn't around here back then. I was under age. Okay, I'm ready. Do we have all our instructions?"
"For the most part. There is one slight detail which has come to my attention. I got a call from Skinner. We're to watch out for a blond man, 5'9", about 180 pounds. A Robert Zensky has made a threat on the Director."
"Wasn't he fired last year?" Scully grabbed her handbag and jacket.
"Yes. Why? Do you know him?"
"Just the name. I recall reading about it in a security memo in May. Wasn't he the one who shot his partner because he didn't get the credit for an arrest?"
"I think it was the Stephanie Webber kidnap arrest, and he did shoot his partner," Mulder anwered her. "In the ass."
"Yes, Jack Formby WAS was walking around rather sheepishly when he came back to work. Well, we always give each other credit, right?"
"Gee, I certainly like to THINK that's the case with us."
"Let's get going... everyone's equally credited and laughed at in OUR office."
The Banquet Centre the F.B.I. chose was not your run-of-the-mill eatery. White linen tablecloths, Waterford Crystal, and the best silverware and china graced the tables. Bird of Paradise and other exotic flowers were featured with fern fronds on each round and rectangular table. Mulder and Scully were to sit at the head table, a table reserved for the Director, Assistant Directors, a Senator or two, and special guest speakers.
The agents arived at 7:45 as all guests and honorees were filing into the room. A few drinks, and then dinner. The appetizer trays were being brought into the room, and Mulder was hungry. But he was supposed to be on guard.
"I wish I'd been a guest, instead," he whispered.
"I wish I'd broken in these shoes," Scully retorted. "DO NOT ask me to dance."
"But a good shot, Mulder. Remember who we're to deal with, should he show up."
"He'd be stupid to come into a room full of agents, Scully."
"Still, we're Security tonight. There's Skinner. He looks so antsy."
"Must be the cumberbund," Mulder quipped, adjusting his. "There's Drake with, no, Deborah Foster. Who'd believe?"
"It's been all over the building, Mulder!"
"No! Why am I always the last to know? "
"Shh. Survey, Mulder. Survey. I think we can get some appetizers."
As they reached for something to eat, Skinner called them over to the bar.
"Well, I'm taking come cheese balls," Mulder snapped. "I hope they've called off the Zensky watch."
"I just want you to know you can behave as if you're just here for the festivities," their boss reminded Mulder especially. "Although I don't believe the threat was a serious one, we are treating it as such. Just don't drink tonight. Have a dinner wine and leave it at that."
"Well, I plan to," said Scully. "And you're going to behave, right, Mulder?"
"Somehow I don't think I feel like a beer in this tux anyway. So, we can dance, right?"
Scully gave Mulder her best scowl.
Skinner saw the scowl as well. "Well, that's up to each of you, individually." He glanced at his watch. "7:55. Everyone should be getting seated. You know where you are."
"Right beside the Director," Mulder replied. "And keep it to Sir, and general interest. No business, no kooky jokes."
"You remembered our little talk. Good." Skinner took his seat near the end of the table as the Director was ushered in, and the award
recipients took a rectangular table in front of the round ones.
As the speeches went on, Mulder and Scully nodded, applauded and carefully checked around the room, nodding to colleagues while they watched for anyone resembling the suspect.
As they ate dinner, they practiced the same random surveillance and greetings.
"It's likely everyone knew the guy, Scully. He was always telling the worst jokes in the halls." Mulder was struggling with a baked potato.
"Well, I didn't," Scully said seriously. "I guess I don't want to, after what he did. The spuds were underdone. At least the carrots aren't the canned variety." Scully glanced around theroom a bit. "Speaking of which, I'll be back in a minute."
"Aren't you going to take a female friend with you? All the ladies do."
Scully rolled her eyes. "Really? Well, I suppose... say we could talk about you."
"Don't be, partner. I won't be long."
A minute became five minutes. Mulder began to worry after seven minutes. He lifted his finger to summon a female server.
"Yes, is everything all right, Sir?"
"I think so. Well, my partner, the lady with the red hair in the blue dress, I think someone should check the ladies' room. I might be worrying about nothing... "
"I'll have one of our servers check on her, Sir. I'm sure everything's all right."
When the server who was sent to the washroom did not return, the original woman whispered the news to Mulder. "A male voice? Okay,see the bald man in the glasses? He's Mr. Skinner. You tell him what you told me about Agent Scully and the server. And make sure he talks to me."
The Director told Mulder, "They're probably just talking about you."
"Somehow I doubt that."
"Son, I've been to enough of these events to know that when women are in no man's land at a dinner and dance, the topic always comes up." The Director smiled reassuringly, but all Mulder could do was shrug.
"Maybe so, Sir. I always look out for my partner as well as the guests." Where is Skinner, he thought.
Walter Skinner left the room with another male agent and left Mulder wondering if Scully had met up with the former agent, Robert Zensky.
After about ten minutes, as the tables were being moved away to make room for dancing, Scully returned with Skinner and the female server who had been sent to retrieve her.
"Scully! Did they get him? Are you all right?"
"Get who?" Scully asked innocently. "The plumber?"
"Plumber? He threatened you?"
"Oh, here we go. Just because I had a sick migraine, lost an earring down the sink which my father had given me and said that they set off the sapphire in my eyes, YOU WORRY!"
"Well, there is a certain amount of concern about tonight... "
"They found him an hour ago. He's being questionned in the jail," Skinner informed him. "Now, if you'll excuse me... "
Mulder rubbed his face into his hands. "Migraine. Did you get the earring back?"
"Yes, Mulder, the headache is gone and I'm fine. And, we found the earring after the plumber took the sink apart."
"You do look good in satin and lace, you know... "
"Remember what happened to Jack Formby," Scully cautioned him.
"You wouldn't shoot me in the... "
"Aw, for Pete's sake, get up and dance. That's an order," the Director advised the pair of agents.
"I guess we'd better do as we're told." Mulder offered a hand to Scully. "Shall we?"
"Why not. Just slowly, okay?"
"Only because the room's spinning and so is my head."
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