Title: Progresive Regression
Category: Mulder Angst, MSR married.
Spoilers: DeadAlive, Requiem. Post-Prevention of Colonization. Summary: Scully convinces Mulder to resolve his new inner demons by undergoing regression therapy. Sequel to When You Call for Me in Your Sleep.
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Disclaimer: All characters, X-Files title and series, and original premise and plots belong to Chris Carter, 1013 Productions and Fox Studios. Should I sue THEM for Seasons 8 and 9? Noooo, I'm WAY too NICE! So, I hope they are, as I make no money and intend no copyright infringement.
Dana Scully-Mulder was a very tired mother these days. William and Meg were quite the fighters, and the new baby was being breastfed more frequently lately as she was undergoing a growth spurt.
Sometimes a middle of the night feed was called for, but in order to nurse a baby well, a mother needed her rest. Sometimes there was an hour or two free for that in the afternoons, with the little ones down for a nap. Not very often, now. William was three and outgrowing the need for a nap.
Fox Mulder was not sleeping well at all, lately. His wife knew that his ordeal on the alien ship had traumatized him to the point of nightmares long before they moved to Alexandria so he could return to the X-Files Office. She had wanted him to undergo regression therapy to confront the suppressed memories and pain of his abduction, but he adamantly refused to do so. Positively, absolutely out of the question. Too much to do at work. Why waste time in a futile effort to recapture memories he wouldn't want to relive, even though as a psychologist, he knew better than to take that stance.
Well, dammit, he was suffering Post Traumatic Stress and Scully wanted him to deal with it, feel better, and help her understand his pain. She took it upon herself to have Dr. Verber meet her beloved right at the office along side her. Grandma could babysit for a couple of hours or so for one, two, ten, however many sessions it took to regain the healthiest Mulder possible.
"Well, I don't really think this is the time or place for such a thing, and as I have wrok toy do... "
"So, when IS a good time?" Scully demanded. "You are in such pain you don't get a good rest at night, you have me awake twice as much as the baby does, and your screams, yes screams, are terrifying the kids. You once said Dr. Verber could help me, and he did. Now, we want to return the favor. My husband, it's would mean so much to me if I went through this with you this time, right beside you. Please?"
"Well, I guess the anniversary haunting of an old historical site can wait. Been a long time, Dr. Verber."
"You look good, considering all you've been through, Fox. Shall we get started?"
"All right. Get comfortable in that chair, and let every muscle relax. Let go of all the tension in your body and mind. Breathe deeply, slowly. Take yourself to a place you feel very safe and secure. You may return there at any time during this session to feel that way and seek refuge. We will keep you safe as well. Now, what is the last thing you remember before being taken?"
"Skinner and I were setting up a grid to expose an alien ship. We didn't quite understand how it would operate, but we had it working. I walked... I walked over to a place where ... I was drawn into the presence of others who were taken from Bellefleur. The grid wasn't visible, and Skinner... I couldn't call out to him or see him. I was too focused on the others. We were in some type of limbo or static state. I think... I don't know... "
"Do you know what you did?"
"We were all held that way.. not moving or talking... just aware of each other. Some were tested... probed... different times, rooms. The... shapeshifters, bounty hunters, were there... testing me... looked all alike... all the same faces... needles, drills... strapped me down... pain... much pain... "
Scully couldn't hide her sympathetic suffering from Verber. He touched her shoulder and motioned for her to relax. But she would not stray far from Mulder. She was there to support him. No matter how he suffered.
"Much pain... Sculllyyyyy!!! Where are you?" he cried. "Need you!"
"Safe Place," Dr. Verber instructed him. "Rest in the safe place."
Suddenly. Mulder was resting in Scully's arms, at home, in bed. Smiling. Surrounded by the children's pictures.
"If you want to stop now, put one finger up."
No finger was raised.
"I'll let you relax for a moment in the safe place. Gather strength from it. Dana and I are here to help and support you. No one may hurt you. Memories are only memories. Shadows of the past. Rest and replenish your energy."
Verber backed away and allowed the depleted Mulder to rest. He moticed for Dana Scully to sit in one of the office chairs and whispered, "I'm surprised and pleased he remembers as much as he does, Dana."
"Well, he's a strong man in many respects, Doctor. But his pain is so evident when he dreams. I just feel so incapable of helping him. So much in common with him, and I know what it's like."
"Yes, and if you would like further regression as well, I'd be glad to help take you back. When you make the call. It's all up to you."
"I'll... I'll need to think about it. I have the children to think about these days."
"I understand. And, I am very happy for you."
"Thank you. Everything was worth the effort."
"Fox, do you want to go any further in this session?"
"Nnnn... 'nother time. So tired."
Verber spoke softly to the obviously exhausted Mulder. "That's quite normal, and we can meet again soon. Now, when you go to bed tonight, you will have fewer pianful dreams, more restful sleep. Allow yourself to let us help you through this. As I now count slowly to three, you will open yours eyes and feel quite relaxed and rested. It's all right to remember the things you've said here. One...two... three. There we are."
Mulder opened his eyes. "Scully... "
She ran into his arms as a tear fell down her cheek and Mulder's eyes were streaming. "Oh, Mulder. Don't speak... I already know... I do. It's going to get much better."
"I think with a little Dr. Scully therapy, it will," he smiled through his tears.
Verber headed for the door. "I think I'll leave you two to talk, okay? Give me a call when you want to go a little further."
"Thank you. I know I was reluctant at first, but maybe it's worth getting it all out in the open and really living again."
"You haven't been, have you?"
"Not as well as I can. Thanks."
"See you soon." Verber left the office as Scully sat on her husband's knee. "And just what is your recommendation, Dr. Scully-Mulder?"
"Open your eyes, take it all for what it was, and move on. That's all anyone can do, I did."
"No regrets. And, I think we should have him see you in about another week. Deal?" She kissed him passionately.
"Never could say no to the enigmatic, sexy, lovely Dr. Scully. Or the most persuasive Dana Scully-Mulder." As he hugged his wife tightly, he felt as though he was really coming home for good: in wakefullness AND sleep.
It was eight days after Mulder's first post-abduction session with Dr. Verber that he and Scully contacted the regression therapist. They were both anxious to solve Mulder's lingering trauma due to the time spent on the Shapeshifters' vessel. Many phydical scars had healed long ago, yet there were concerns over those nightmares Mulder had been having.
The past week had brought Fox Mulder fewer nightmares and less intense anxiety. The agent was grateful for that. Yet, if he was not able to fully move on, how could he focus thoroughly on the joy of his recovered career and beautiful family?
This session took place in Verber's office. Mulder felt he would be more relaxed there. Also, the chances of being interrupted by urgent F.B.I. business and phone calls was reduced. Not by much, granted. But at least no one would pass him a memo or reach him at his desk phone. Dana Scully Mulder joined him once more to lend support and love.
"Okay, Fox. Have a seat in the recliner and we'll get started. How have you felt this past week?"
"Well, not as many nightmares. Right, Scully?."
"They have become less frequesnt and less intense, Dr. Verber. Fox seems more at ease with going to sleep. He doesn't startle as easily in the night."
"I feel more rested, too. Let's get started. Maybe in some way my therapy will help some of the others."
"Good attitude! I want you now to just let your arms and legs go loose. Breathe in slowly and deeply, closing yours eyes and letting your mind drift into a quieter state. Find a safe place to come back to should you feel the need. Now, let go of all cares and bodily tension. As I count down from three to one, I want you to go to the place in the ship where you left off the lst time I spoke with you. See and feel the place. Hear the sounds, any words said. Where are you now, Fox?"
Scully bit her lip as she remembered where her beloved had left off. A shudder ran through her body and her hands were cold.
"I'm... I'm in the metal chair. Clamped down. There are things, drills in my face, my nech, my mouth. They take tissue samples. They inject me with something... not a drug... liquid, but not mind- altering. There's this... this... cold thing. Metal. It goes into ... Sculllyyyyy! I feel her near, but she can't come to me. It... God, it hurts!!!" His face was writhing with pain, arms tensed and face reddened. "Need my safe place. Need her."
"I'm right here, Mulder. I'm not going anywhere. Feel me, Mulder."
Verber nodded, and Scully held Mulder's hand. It seemed to loosen up somewhat. "You are in a very safe place, Fox. Remain there for a few moments, rest, keep your eyes closed. We will will go back, if you wish, in a little while. Just feel the warmth and serenity of your safe place, your partner and wife."
Scully continued to hold Mulder's hand and turned to the doctor. "How is he doing?" She was contemplating ending the session at that moment.
"He's very strong. And determined. He wants to express his feelings, tell what happened. But if it does get too intense, I will insist he stop."
"He seems more relaxed now. what he must have been through... I'm so lucky to have him back. She let the tears flow. "He went through a lot more than I did. I can feel it... "
"I believe you may be right, Dana. But, someday, please, let me help you with the rest of your abduction experience? Please... "
"I will. I'm so grateful to you for helping him so far."
"I choose to do this. Okay, Fox. Would you like to go back to the vessel and recall some more, or leave it until another time?"
"Want to say more. Need to tell you more."
"You were being tested, and they were injecting you with something. Do you remember saying that to us?"
"Yes. A liquid. Then... the metal. And samples. Cloned me. He didn't speak. Sent him to get files, evidence, find the boy... Gibson. Failed to get the boy. Couldn't stop it. Always held down. Tests, samples, object in body. Just like the others."
"People like me. To fight for them. Fight the grays. Make more supersoldiers. Sent me back. Scully thought I was dead. Scullyyy!"
"I'm here, Mulder and you're alive. You're alive and we had a baby."
"Trying to help you. Wasn't there... They wanted him. Didn't do it. William was... helped. He 's all right."
"Okay. I'm going to count slowly to three, Fox, and we will be finished with your regression today. One, slowly coming back to Dana and me. Two, feeling safe, that it's okay to remember and not feel badly. Three, open your eyes."
Mulder opened his eyes wide and smiled. "Scully. Always there for me."
"Yes. Always. How do you feel?"
"It's so odd, yet so familiar. All the things... probes, tests. Wanting to see you again. I think I made it because I had you and the baby to come back to. Just before I left, I could tell you were carrying him."
Verber stepped in. The enthusiasm could have been premature on Mulder's part. The doctor had to be sure. "Are you okay with the things you remember experiencing?"
"I think so. I guess I can call you if I need any more help."
"Always. And remember, Dana, you can call me anytime to ..."
Of course," she said wirh a smile. "Right now, I just want to take him home to our family."
"She always says that... "
"Well, there was a time... " Scully gently teased. "I think you know. I think you know."
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