Secret Holiday

by ML

Date: February 18, 2004
Title: Secret Holiday
Author: ML
Feedback: always welcome
Distribution: Gossamer, Ephemeral, yes; anyone else, just drop me a line. Thanks!
Spoilers: nope
Rating: R
Summary: The best holidays are the ones we declare for ourselves.

Disclaimer: Mulder and Scully aren't mine. They mostly belong to David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson, but Chris Carter created them, and Ten Thirteen and FOX own the rights. I mean no infringement, and I'm not making any profit from them.

Thanks to Char for a bit o'beta, and to Carol for egging me on...

Secret Holiday
by ML

Thump. Off came one shoe.

Thump. The second one followed. Ah, blessed relief.

Scully rubbed the top of one foot along her calf as she sorted through the mail. She rolled her head from side to side, relieving some of the stiffness from hours standing at an autopsy table, and then the long drive home.

It was so much nicer when she could ride home with Mulder. She didn't mind him driving, and he wasn't offended if she dozed a little. And lately, there'd been an added bonus: more often than not these days, Mulder came upstairs with her. Sometimes he stayed all night.

Where was Mulder, anyway? Scully had made him promise he wouldn't go off on some wild goose chase. He swore he'd stay in the DC area, and that he wouldn't investigate anything on his own. As she left for Quantico, he'd mumbled something about doing some research with the Gunmen, and said he'd "be in touch."

He'd called her a couple of hours ago, asking if he could come by that evening to "show her something." Scully wasn't sure if this was Mulder-speak for "wanna get lucky tonight?" or if he had something work-related to discuss away from the office. This thing between them was so new, they hadn't gotten their codes straight yet.

Either way, she'd be glad to see him. She worried when he went for too long without calling her. The only times she hadn't heard from him every few hours, he'd been presumed dead, or trapped somewhere.

Then she noticed her answering machine light winking at her. With some trepidation, Scully pressed the play button.

"Hey Scully, it's me. Got a little held up, so I might be later than I thought. I'll bring dinner, so don't start without me, okay?"

Well, he didn't sound distressed. He'd probably gotten sucked into some new game at the Gunmen's lair and wanted to finish it up. She couldn't tell from the background noise where he was calling from.

Her mind somewhat eased, Scully turned her thoughts to easing her body. A nice long soak in the tub would be heavenly, and if she wasn't done before Mulder got there, would that be such a bad thing? Visions of Mulder catching her in the tub made her smile.


More than an hour later, the water was cooling off for the second time and her fingers and toes were turning distinctly prune-like. With a sigh, Scully pulled the drain plug and rinsed herself off. It looked like neither of them would have any bathtub fantasies realized that night.

The bath hadn't even been very relaxing. She'd been on edge, listening for Mulder. Wrapping her bathrobe around her, Scully shuffled into the kitchen. Her stomach growled softly.

Mulder had said he'd bring dinner but it was getting late and she hadn't eaten much that day. She took a carrot from the crisper drawer and nibbled on it as she returned to the bedroom.

It was too early for pajamas, especially with Mulder coming. She didn't want him to think she had the wrong idea if he really did want to talk about a case. They hadn't talked much about it, but they both were trying to keep some kind of separation between work and their personal lives. Considering how their lives were intertwined already, she reflected, it was proving to be some feat. If we're successful, she thought, we'd be written up in some journal. "FBI Agents Find Extra Hours in the Day," or "Agents by Day, Lovers by Night."

No. It sounded like one of Mulder's movies put like that. Or one of those women's magazines she flipped through in the checkout line. They loved titles like that.

Where the hell was Mulder?

She yanked open a drawer and pulled out some old sweats. Then she pulled open her underwear drawer with a little too much force and it pulled out of the bureau, spilling its contents on the floor.

There it was, peeking out from under all the practical tailored bras and panties. A navy blue camisole and tap pant set, made of nearly sheer silk and trimmed with black lace. She'd bought it a couple of years ago, during a brief period of euphoria after her remission. At the time, she couldn't admit even to herself the reason why she'd bought it, and not long after that she'd stuffed it in the back of her drawer, unworn.

She held the soft garments in her hands, fingering the delicate lace, letting the cool silk slip over her skin. It warmed against her, at once sensuous and soothing, like a lover's gentle touch.

She blushed at the romantic imagery. Neither she nor Mulder were hearts and flowers kind of people. Valentine's Day had come and gone without either of them acknowledging it. She suspected Mulder only remembered Christmas every year because of her. He never gave a thought to his birthday, and whether or not he'd remember hers was a source of amusement to her. Now that they were lovers, she didn't think that would change.

Really, nothing fundamental had changed between them. She hadn't come to love him suddenly; there had been no instant falling. It had been a gradual acceptance of each other's qualities and quirks. It was seeing beyond the surface to the real person, revealed over time. It was the shared experiences, joys and sorrows that no one else could ever possibly understand, vulnerabilities no one else knew about.

It was as though they'd been thrown into an arranged marriage, and yet had learned to love each other anyway, despite the intentions of those who'd done the arranging. She knew what she could expect from Mulder, more or less. He knew what he could expect from her. She wouldn't change a hair on him, nor want him to be something or someone he couldn't be. Likewise, he didn't expect her to be anyone other than who she was.

But that didn't mean that she couldn't do something she thought would please him. She shrugged off her robe and put the silk garments on. Then she pulled her old sweats on over them, and went back to the living room to wait for Mulder.


It was unbelievable how bad traffic was for this time of night. Was it just him, or was rush hour starting earlier and ending later? Mulder tapped his fingers impatiently on the steering wheel. He'd promised Scully dinner, and it was past all but the most fashionably late dinner hour.

Unless of course one lived in Spain, he thought sourly. Might as well. It was taking as long as a transatlantic flight just to get across town.

Making matters worse, his cell phone had died and he'd left the spare battery at the office. He could pull over and find a pay phone somewhere but it would just delay his arrival that much more.

Damn Frohike anyway with his vague directions. He'd left the Gunmen's in plenty of time. He'd gone home to shower and change clothes before going in search of this place, and now he regretted taking the time. Scully wouldn't care if he showed up in the suit he'd worn all day. Or he could have waited and changed once he got to Scully's. Time was it wouldn't have mattered to him either way. But now he liked to mark the transition from business to personal time whenever he could. He needed and wanted to remind himself that he was going to Scully's not because they were working, but because she wanted his company and he wanted hers.

Of course, he'd always wanted her company, and would use any excuse to call her or drop by. Now he didn't need one. He'd never really had a relationship like the one he had with Scully. In the past, work was work, and personal time was to be avoided.

That didn't mean that they never talked shop when they spent time together off the clock. But now they didn't have to pretend that there was no other reason for them to be together. Until Scully, Mulder hadn't known how great that could be. She'd been after him almost since they'd become partners to take some time for himself but he could never see any reason to do so. Until now. He saw the appeal of taking a night off once in a while, as long as it involved Scully.

Still, it was something he was having a little trouble adjusting to. He made sure he called Scully before coming over, even though he had a key and he knew she'd never tell him not to come. They were still learning to balance -- or maybe juggle -- the work, and everything else.

The smell of the food was driving him crazy. He was tempted to open the bag and grab a bite right now. Patience, he told himself. All good things come to those who wait. This was a philosophy he'd not subscribed to in the past, but being with Scully had changed his world view in ways, large and small.

He wasn't just hungry for dinner, he was hungry for Scully. He'd lived with the latter hunger for a long time, but now he could appreciate the anticipation and almost enjoy it.

It didn't stop him from trying to get to Scully's the fastest way he could.


Another forty-five minutes had crawled by. Scully restrained herself from re-dialing the phone. It hadn't done her any good the last fifteen times; she'd gotten the out of range/not available message every time, and leaving another voice mail seemed futile. If he hadn't gotten the first one, he wouldn't get another fourteen, either.

She couldn't help but worry. She'd worried almost from the first of their partnership. She remembered the incident at Ellens Air Base, and the first time she'd threatened an authority figure who'd tried to keep her from Mulder. She'd definitely crossed a line there. She'd crossed it so many times since then she couldn't give an accurate accounting of them.

A novel way to fall asleep instead of counting sheep, she mused. How many times have I rescued Mulder? How many times has he rescued me? Not really sleep inducing, she concluded. More the stuff of nightmares.

Mulder had better show up pretty soon, though, or...

She heard the key in the lock and was instantly on alert.

The door swung open to reveal Mulder, arms full of delicious-smelling bags.

"Remind me," he said as he pushed the door shut with his foot, "never to take Frohike's advice on a short cut."

"Where have you been, Mulder?" Scully asked. She followed him into the kitchen, grimacing as her stomach growled more loudly than before.

"Didja miss me?" he grinned as he unloaded the bags. Scully had set the table and he placed cartons in the middle while Scully got serving utensils.

"I was getting hungry," she said teasingly, but added a bit diffidently, "I was a little worried, too."

"Aw Scully --" he wrapped his arms around her. "There was nothing to worry about. Frohike told me about this great barbecue place but his directions left a lot to be desired. Next time I'll make him go with me."

"Or come by and get me," Scully suggested. "Then at least we'd be lost together."

Mulder kissed her. "You say the sweetest things, Agent Scully."

Scully blushed and turned away, missing Mulder's disappointed look. Mulder let her go and finished putting the food on the table, determined to make nothing of it. "Come and get it," he said.

The silence might have been awkward if they both hadn't been so hungry. Both were busy with their thoughts. Scully regretted pulling away from Mulder, and Mulder regretting letting her. Both resolved separately to do something about it.

Finally, Scully said, "This is delicious. You went to a lot of trouble, Mulder. Thank you."

"I did a lot of driving around, mostly," he said. "It's not like I whipped up a gourmet meal or anything."

"Maybe this is your equivalent," she said. "You took time and care to choose something you knew I'd like, you went out of your way to go get it. I'd say that's just as thoughtful."

"I do like the way you think, Scully," Mulder said. He took her hand in his and kissed it.

Scully didn't pull away this time, but she felt compelled to say, "I don't need to be wooed, Mulder, but I do appreciate a thoughtful gesture."

This time she could see Mulder's hurt look. "Yeah, flowers and candy are nice, but I've always heard it's the thought that counts," he quipped.

Oh, this was going very well. Maybe she was wrong to try and talk about this. Maybe they did better just letting it happen. She stood to clear the dishes away. He put his hand over hers to stop her. "Leave those."

"I'll just have to do them later," she pointed out. "It's nice not to eat out of containers once in a while, but that means there's clean up to be done after. It's part of the trade-off." She continued clearing the table.

Reluctantly, Mulder got up to help. He didn't object to doing the dishes as such, but it was a mood-spoiler to keep having these domestic interruptions. If there was a mood to spoil.

On the other hand, Scully with her hands trapped in the sudsy water was a vulnerable target. He stacked the plates on the counter and put his arms around her waist, leaning his head on her shoulder and kissing her cheek. He slid his hands up her sides and then down her arms, covering her hands in the dishwater. "Need a little help?" he murmured in her ear.

"I have the feeling if I say yes, it'll take twice as long," she said, tilting her head to one side so he could rub his cheek along her neck. The roughness of his evening stubble against her tender skin gave her chills.

"But you'll enjoy it more," he said, kissing her just below the ear.

"Mmmm," she said non-committally, but she didn't pull her hands away. Instead, she pressed back against him, startling him. He hissed softly into her ear and she smiled.

Together they washed the dishes, though Mulder was more hindrance than help. He did make doing the dishes a lot more fun than usual. His hands sliding over hers in the warm water and his body pressed up against hers made her blood hum with anticipation.

Scully took pity on him and let the dishes sit in the drainer rather than drying them. She let Mulder lead her into the living room.

There didn't seem to be any kind of a plan being followed here, but Scully liked to know where she was going and what was expected of her. Before Mulder could settle in, she asked, "Was there a particular reason you wanted to come over tonight, Mulder?"

Mulder was nonplused. He'd thought he'd made his agenda pretty clear so far, and Scully had seemed okay with it. "Do I need one?" he asked, a little worried that he'd missed a signal somewhere.

"No, just checking before -- well, just checking," she said. She wasn't trying to hurt Mulder's feelings, but she seemed to keep doing it.

Now it seemed they were both confused about what was going on. "I promised not to investigate anything without you," he said, "so I don't have any new case to spring on you or anything. Were you expecting that?"

"I wasn't sure," she said. "When you called earlier, you said you wanted to show me something, so I thought --"

"Maybe all I want to show you is a good time," he said. "I didn't want to go into any details over the phone, but I figured --"

They both stared at each other. Then they both smiled, and Scully giggled. "This is crazy," she said.

Mulder grinned. "Guess we're not very good at figuring this out, are we?"

"Well, it's a work night, it's no special holiday or anything, and we've spent so much time together going over cases and --"

"Are you sorry we didn't do anything for Valentine's Day?" he asked suddenly. "I mean, I didn't think you cared about stuff like that."

"I don't, Mulder. I really don't. It's okay," she reassured him. She sat on the sofa and gestured for him to sit next to her. "I think we're still trying to figure out this part of our lives," she said. "I don't need an official holiday to know how I feel about you, or to tell you. It is a convenient shorthand, though. If you'd invited yourself over on Valentine's Day, I might have assumed that it was for more than work. But right now, I -- it's hard for me to figure it out. I want you all the time, but there are times when I'm not sure I should, um, say so."

For a moment, all Mulder heard was, "I want you all the time." He let that soak in, closing his eyes briefly and smiling to himself. Scully watched him. Had she ever told him that before? Not in so many words, perhaps. Maybe she should do something about that.

"Scully, you can say that to me any time, any hour of the day," he uncannily echoed her thoughts. "It's the same for me. We have to learn how to deal with it, though. I don't want you to not say it because you think the timing's not right. I think we've spent too much time worrying about that. And I sure as hell don't want to wait for some official holiday to let you know how I feel about you. So I'm declaring this our holiday. Today is the day I get to tell you and show you how I feel. No flowers, no candy, no special card. Just a little time to be ourselves together. Let that be my Valentine's gift to you. Or early birthday. Whatever you want to call it."

Mulder never ceased to amaze her. She loved the way his mind worked. All the same, she couldn't resist teasing him a little. "Does that mean we only get one day a year?" she asked, her lips quirking as she tried not to smile.

"I think we can declare our own holidays whenever we want," he said. "I'm declaring this one `Scully Day.' You can declare a `Mulder Day' any time."

"That's what I like," she murmured. "A moveable feast."

"Just don't move too far out of range," he said. He cupped her face in his hands and kissed the corners of her mouth. Then he just hovered over her lips. He whispered to her, letting his lips barely brush hers as he spoke words she couldn't hear but could feel against her lips, and in her very soul.

With one last lingering caress of her lips, he turned to settle her against his side, one arm around her shoulders. With his other hand, he picked up hers and brought it to his lips.

Scully tried to turn more fully to him. She reached to caress his face, trying to turn him toward her for another kiss. Mulder stayed her hand with his.

"Just relax, enjoy the ride," he admonished her gently. "This is where we stop the car for a while, okay? My turn to drive."

Scully opened her mouth to point out the mixed metaphor, and Mulder leaned forward to cup the back of her head, placing a soft kiss on her forehead.

"I love your mind, Scully. You know I do. But just let yourself feel this. That's part of stopping the car, you know," he murmured, placing tiny kisses along her hairline.

He watched while Scully processed his request and wondered if he was right to ask her for this. Sensual enjoyment was tied to the imagination -- and he did love her mind. He didn't want some lifeless doll in his arms, and he hoped she realized that.

She cast her eyes down for a moment. He allowed his fingers to tickle the back of her neck lightly. Her breathing was in counterpoint to his own, exhaling as he inhaled. Then her breaths fell into rhythm with his, slow and even. She raised her head and looked into his eyes, and he saw himself reflected there. She closed her eyes slowly and opened them again, a slow-motion blink but also an affirmation. She got it -- he'd known she would. She smiled slowly, letting the tip of her tongue moisten her lips. Oh, how he wanted to pull her tight against him and feel those luscious lips against his own. But that would come in good time. He was going to take the scenic route. He'd make sure they both enjoyed every minute of it.

"Just--" he kissed her fingertips, "let me --" now he kissed the back of her hand, "show you --" now turning her hand over and kissing the inside of her wrist.

His long fingers grasped hers, gently massaging them as he bared her arm to the elbow, pushing the loose sleeve of her sweatshirt as far up as it would go. His lips traveled from her wrist up her inner arm to pause over the inside of her elbow. He touched the tender skin there with just the tip of his tongue, then gently pressed his lips against the soft inner fold.

Scully didn't even try to suppress the quiver and sigh that his touch drew from her. She trembled again when she felt him breathe a puff of air across skin dampened by his kisses.

Mulder watched the chill bumps form and the fine hairs of Scully's arm react to his subtle ministrations. There was a lot to be said for heat and urgency, but sometimes slow and deliberate could be fun, too. His brain was racing and his body tightened in anticipation, but he took deep breaths, pausing for a slow count between touches of his lips to Scully's skin. Another inch, another kiss, and so on, up and up.

Her skin tingled wherever Mulder had touched her. Scully relaxed against the arm draped over her shoulders. She closed her eyes so she could concentrate on the next touch. She felt aware of each individual nerve ending. She struggled to keep her breathing slow and even, though she couldn't prevent the tremor of her pounding heart. She felt boneless yet highly reactive -- as if every molecule in her body was reaching out to Mulder.

He pulled the sleeve of her sweatshirt down and shifted position to pull up her other sleeve. To Scully it seemed so much easier to take the whole thing off, but Mulder was determined to have it all his own way. He concentrated first on her fingers, then the palm of her hand, to the inside of her wrist and up to the crook of her elbow, ending with the most sensuous kiss anyone ever received on that part of her anatomy, Scully was certain of it. Then he pulled her sleeve back down.

Scully let her arms drop to her sides, hoping that Mulder's next move would be to pull the sweatshirt off. He knelt in front of her, parting her knees so he could get closer to her. His hands spanned her waist, and she leaned forward to help him pull the garment off. But no; instead, he caressed her through the cloth, running his hands up her sides and then over her front, across her breasts and down her abdomen, his hands coming to rest on her thighs.

He let his hands stay there. She waited for his next move.

She would not squirm. She could be patient. His eyes met hers. Somehow, he was managing to keep his breathing even, while hers had become ragged. She kept her hands from grabbing for him by sheer force of will.

He must have noticed that, for he moved to take her hands in his and kiss each one in turn before leaning forward to at last grasp the hem of her sweatshirt and pull it over her head.

"Oh, Scully," he breathed. Scully looked down and realized she'd forgotten all about the camisole set she'd put on earlier.

She smiled a cat-with-cream sort of smile. "Maybe it's Mulder Day after all," she said.

"If this is the official Mulder Day uniform, I'm all for it," he said.

She looked magnificent, lying against the back of the sofa, her hair in disarray and her lips slightly parted. She gave him a sultry, heavy-lidded look and her tongue darted out to lick her lips. He let his gaze travel further down. One thin strap of the camisole had dropped from her shoulder, revealing the upper slope of her breast. The sheerness of the silk only served to emphasize the creamy paleness of her skin. Another pale ribbon of flesh showed between the bottom of the camisole and the top of her sweatpants. Suddenly he really, really wanted to know what was under those sweatpants.

He stood, reaching for her hands to pull her up too, but she stopped him. "I want to see you, too," she whispered. She ran his hands over his sweater, down his chest to the hem. She burrowed her hands under it, and instead of pulling it off all at once, she inched it up his torso, letting her fingers play over his warm skin. She got the sweater as far as his chest and slid her hands back down to his waist. She repeated the journey, letting her hands get almost to his underarms, tickling the flesh just below.

Now it was Mulder's turn to have trouble breathing. He managed to stay still but swore to himself that if Scully didn't stop teasing him soon, he'd have to take steps. He just wasn't able to think clearly about what those steps should be.

At last she let him raise his arms and she pulled the sweater off. But she wasn't through with him yet; she took a few moments to look at him the way he'd looked at her. He'd never had anyone look at him like that before. Was this how Scully felt when he looked at her? All hot and cold at the same time -- self-conscious but somehow proud to see the admiration in her gaze? Longing for her touch but wanting to delay it too?

Did his gaze make her as hot as he was right now? He was as hard as stone. Only one way to find out...

...and then, she reached out and put her hands on his chest, brushing her fingers over his nipples.

He just about jumped out of his skin. His whole body jerked to attention.

Scully looked pleased, like a theory she'd had was just proved beyond a doubt.

He'd show her. "C'mere," he said, and was successful in pulling her to her feet. He held her by her shoulders, aimed for her mouth with his, and at the last minute veered off to kiss her jaw. She moved her head, trying to zero in on his mouth, but he was too quick for her, landing kisses everywhere but where she expected. He got around behind her, kissing along her shoulder blades and kneeling to trail his kisses down the middle of her back, watching her flesh shiver as he touched her. She craned her neck around to try and see what he was doing and he reached up to cup her silk-covered breasts. She stilled instantly, sucking in her breath.

He stayed still with her for a moment. Slowly, hesitantly, she covered his hands with hers, encouraging him to touch her. He pressed his cheek against her back and closed his eyes while he touched her. His fingers found her nipples and they reacted instantly to his touch. Scully's soft moan went straight to his groin.

After a while he slid his hands down to the waistband of her sweats, pulling the drawstring loose and letting them fall away to reveal the panties that matched her camisole.

"Oh Scully," he breathed against her skin, "I think this really is Mulder Day. I even have a present to unwrap." He placed a kiss on the small of her back.

"But you have to let me finish unwrapping my gift first," Scully said, turning in his grasp. She caressed his hair, looking down at him in a way that staggered him. Desire, dark and smoky, colored her gaze. She licked her lips, sending another shot of fire through his veins.

He didn't generally give much thought to what he wore, but he wished fleetingly that he'd worn something other than boring old boxer briefs for Scully to feast her eyes on.

Scully knelt before him and unbuttoned his jeans. She grasped the waistband and pulled them down, taking his briefs with them. His cock sprang free. So much for dressing up for Scully, he thought wildly. Guess she really isn't one for hearts and flowers.

She smiled wickedly up at him and pursed her delectable lips. He tensed in anticipation of her next move. Don't let me lose it, he thought desperately.

Scully took a deep breath and blew a gentle stream of air over his shaft, which rose that much higher. He couldn't keep his hips from pushing forward.

She leaned forward, closer and closer...

"Don't, Scully," he said quickly, putting out his hand. She rocked back on her heels. "You sure?" she said mischievously.

Mulder sat rather suddenly on the sofa, feeling foolish with his pants bunched around his shoes. He bent to take them off, pulling his pants the rest of the way off with them. Scully sat in front of him expectantly, waiting for his answer. His cock twitched hopefully.

"Maybe I need my head examined, but yeah," he said regretfully. "This is supposed to be about both of us, right? So, even Steven, Scully. My turn. And besides, I don't wanna end up on the hard floor when I know there's a nice, soft bed in the next room." He held out his hand to pull Scully to her feet.

Scully let him lead her into the bedroom. She'd spent her time waiting for Mulder wisely. The bed was turned down, and the bedside lamp was on its lowest setting.

Mulder drew her into his arms. He held her close, circling her back and shoulders with his arms. She laid her head against his chest over his heart. She could feel the heat where their bodies touched, all the different textures that were Mulder. Her arms went around his waist, hugging him closer. She raised her head to him, parting her lips in invitation.

He lowered his head to hers and kissed one eyebrow, then the other. He kissed her nose, and Scully couldn't help but giggle.

Mulder pulled back slightly and looked at her. "What's so funny?"

She smiled and shook her head. "Not funny," she said. "Not ha-ha funny, anyway."

Mulder just looked at her.

"Kiss me," she requested, and he smiled down at her.

"That's what I'm doin'," he said, kissing her temple to illustrate.

She took her hand from his waist and touched his lips with her forefinger, and then hers.

He smiled again. "I'm getting there," he said. "Just saving the best for last."

His hands explored her body as he bent to capture an earlobe with his lips and she was lost. She let her hands roam over him as well, drawing a finger down his spine and stoking his muscular behind. She felt his body begin to push against hers as his kisses became more insistent. He lightly bit her shoulder and licked her neck. He suckled her earlobes and traced her hairline and jaw. She breathed encouragement to him and pulled his body tight against hers.

They sank together onto the bed, hands everywhere at once. Mulder pulled Scully's camisole over her head, and then his mouth and hands were on her breasts. She fell back onto the sheets, drowning in Mulder's sea of kisses and touches. She found her body moving in time with his, though they were at the moment only connected by their mouths and hands. She turned toward him, desperate to be closer, to feel all of him against her again.

She blindly reached out and encountered his hands. He grasped her fingers and guided them to his cock, hot and pulsing and alive. She felt and heard his breath expel in a deep sigh. His hand returned to her breast. His mouth moved up, up, to the hollow of her throat and along her collarbone, stopping to nip at her neck and earlobe before following the edge of her jaw to the corner of her mouth and then tracing her lips with his tongue, opening his mouth to cover hers, suckling first upper and then lower lip. She parted her lips and teased his tongue with hers, trying to lure him on. His hands skimmed down her body lower and lower, finding the waist of her panties as he finally stopped teasing her lips and let his tongue accept her invitation to explore.

She arched toward him, raising up enough for him to pull her panties down and wriggling to help him get them off and out of the way. She wanted nothing between them now, and as he pulled her leg to wrap around his she sighed with satisfaction. He reached between them, still holding her mouth captive with his own as he helped her guide his cock into her.

He thought he would explode right then. He felt Scully's gasp into his mouth all the way down to his toes. He felt the ripple of her body gripping him, surrounding him, even more deeply. He took his mouth from hers long enough to draw his breath, raised himself up, and plunged back into her, body and soul.

It was not their first time together, but it still felt new. Could she have forgotten so quickly what it felt like to welcome him into her body? Or was it just that her memory couldn't quite hold an emotion so overwhelming? How could she have thought that this changed nothing between them? Oh, I love you so much, she thought, matching him kiss for kiss, thrust for thrust.

Mulder felt rather than heard Scully whispering against his mouth between fervent kisses. Her hands caressed him and urged him on, and he gave himself over to the moment, to doing nothing but letting himself feel. They were in perfect concert with one another. He felt her fingers tap along his spine, up and down, and then press against the small of his back. He felt the ripple of his release begin and made himself slow, hoping to prolong it enough to make sure Scully came along for the ride.

She was already waiting for him. The ripple became a floodtide and he heard himself groan as his movements went from measured to frenzied and then slowed to exhaustion. He had enough presence of mind not to collapse fully on Scully before his arms and legs turned to jelly.

She clung to him like a limpet, her legs wrapped around him and her hips pressed to his. He rolled to his side and took her with him. Her eyes were shut, and her breathing was still rapid. He kissed her eyelids.

"Scully? You there?"

"Nuh," she said, and snuggled into his arms.

The air was chill on their sweaty bodies and he did his best to pull the bedcoverings over them. He kissed her mouth softly, and he felt it move into a smile under his lips. "You okay?"

"Yuh uh," she said.

This was one for the diary. He'd evidently robbed Scully of the power of speech. He grinned into her hair and patted her softly. "Gotta move a little. We might get stuck this way."

She opened one eye and began to giggle. He felt the ripple from deep inside her body. He was too spent for it to have much effect on him, but it felt nice all the same.

They managed to arrange themselves a little more comfortably. Mulder found the glass of water Scully had thoughtfully set on the nightstand and shared it with her. He liked this part almost as much as making love. He liked thinking about it.

"I'm almost glad I was late tonight," he said. "It gave me some time to think."

Scully roused a little at that. "What about?"

"This. You. Us," he said, punctuating each word with a kiss. "I mean, I'd rather be with you, but the next best thing is thinking about you. It's nice to have something real to think about."

Scully smiled and stroked his face softly, leaning in for a soft kiss.

"I never would have pegged you for a romantic," she said.

"I don't think I was before now," he said. "Not that I'm gonna start suddenly liking `Steel Magnolias' or anything, but...I dunno. Maybe I'm just full of shit."

"No, you're not," Scully said. "This is weird for me, too. But in a good way."

"Yeah," he said. "That about covers it, I think. So, Scully, when's our next holiday?"

"I've got a birthday coming up," she said. "Does that count?"

"More than I can ever express," he said, "But I was thinking more along the lines of tomorrow. We could call in scared."

"Scared? What do you mean?"

"You know, call Skinner and say, `I'm afraid I can't come in today,'"

Scully groaned. "I can't believe I fell for that."

"I guess I just blinded you with my charm, huh?"

"Sure Mulder, whatever you say."

"Really? Whatever I say?" He raised his eyebrows. "That's too good an opportunity to pass up."

"I meant that figuratively."

"You're no fun, Scully."

"That's not what you said before," she said.

He grinned and gathered her into his arms.


Scully woke to the sound of Mulder's voice, but he wasn't talking to her.

"Yes, sir," he said. "I'll tell her you said so." He listened, then said, "It's not pretty, sir. I'm afraid neither of us will be fit for duty before tomorrow." He listened some more. "Thank you, sir. I'll keep you informed."

By the time Mulder was off the phone, Scully was wide awake and sitting up in bed. "What did you tell Skinner?" she asked.

"That I thought it was something we ate," he said.

He looked pretty edible himself, standing in the altogether with nothing but his cell phone for an accessory.

Nonetheless, Scully tried to take a firm stance. "Did you lie to our boss, Mulder?"

"I'd never do that. I didn't say I felt bad."

"What exactly did you say?"

Mulder walked over to the bed and threw himself onto it. "That I was afraid neither of us would be in today."

Scully snorted. She wouldn't be at all surprised if Skinner already had them figured out, but for the moment she didn't care. She felt damn good, in fact.

"So what holiday are we celebrating today, Mulder?" she asked as he began to kiss his way down her body.

"I dunno," he mumbled around a mouthful of her breast. "But I'm sure something will come up."


Author's note: I'm sure Mulder and Scully would never lie and call in sick. I'm not condoning it, either <g>.


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