DISCLAIMER: The X-Files characters are the property of Fox, Chris Carter, 1013, etc. The story contents are the creation and property of Djinn and are copyright (c) 2000 by Djinn. This story is Rated PG.

 

Return Trip

by Djinn

 

He heard the car drive up, the door opening, then slamming. Angry footsteps up the staircase. The sound of the front door crashing open. Not shutting.

"You lied to me," she was furious. "You used me. And the amazing thing is that I'm surprised."

"You trusted me," he said simply.

"Yes." She began to pace. "I trusted you. God help me, I trusted *you*."

"You had good reason. I saved your life out there. His next shot wouldn't have missed. If mine hadn't taken care of him first."

"You saved me?"

"Frightening, isn't it, Dana? That in such a short time, you should come to trust me. And I should come to care for you. Even to the point of sabotaging my own operation."

She faced him uncertainly, "By not killing me?"

"Not that, I never planned to kill you. By not using the disk. I destroyed it, Dana. All that powerful information, and I just destroyed it."

He reached into his pocket, brought out the pack, the lighter, touched flame to a cigarette. "I decided I didn't have to quit after all."

She stared at him, eyes narrowed, suspicious, angry. "Nothing to live for at all now?"

He looked at her sadly, "Nothing at all, Dana. Somehow, in the last few days, I've grown a conscience. Quite amazing considering all the things I've done in my life, things that never bothered me, never wore on me. But a few days with you, and I suddenly do the right thing. Why do you think that is?"

"I wouldn't know," she moved toward the door. "You're still manipulating me. I'll never trust you again."

"Mulder's wondering if he can trust you now, Dana. He's wondering why you insisted on defending me. He may never completely trust you again."

She stalked back to him. Fury showing in every step. "How do you know that I defended you? Do you have us bugged? Cameras, microphones, what? And where? I won't live like that! I won't be used again!"

He moved closer to her. "I don't have to eavesdrop on you to know you would defend me to Mulder. I told you, Dana. I've studied you for some time. I know you. I let you see into my heart because I knew I could trust you to see the pain, the loneliness. I knew you would see it because you carry it too. You trust me because you see yourself when you look at me."

"We're nothing at all alike."

"Perhaps not." He moved to the door to the back porch. "It's a lovely night. Sit with me awhile, Dana? Before you go back to him. To make things right with him. Just sit with me for a bit."

"Why?"

"Because it would make me a little less lonely. And it might make you a little less lonely too."

"I'm not lonely. I have Mulder."

"Yes of course." He lit another cigarette. "You should tell him."

"Tell him what?"

He went outside, chose a chair near the door. She followed him, stood in the doorway.

"Stay in or come out, but pick one, Dana. You'll let all the bugs in."

"Tell him what!" she repeated sharply as she let the screen door slam behind her.

He motioned to a chair. "Tell him you love him. You *do* love him don't you? Because he loves you, you know. He is completely in love with you."

She sank into the chair. "You can't know that. And how we feel, it's our business. It isn't yours to control, or to taint. It isn't yours to touch."

He stubbed out his cigarette. Turned to her. "Why not. I have feelings for you, Dana. I always have. Haven't you ever wondered why you aren't dead yet? Why you've survived? My god, I even killed Diana, but you…you I can't seem to destroy. Why do you suppose that is, my dear?"

"Because Mulder wouldn't let you."

He laughed, a bitter sound. "Mulder again. Always Mulder. No, Dana, that isn't why you're alive. But you run on back to Mulder now. You try to regain his trust. You try to forget that we ever spent this time together."

She got up, moved past him. "It won't be hard to do that."

His hand shot out, grabbed her wrist. She looked down at him in surprise. Saw the anger in his tired eyes, saw it fade, to be replaced with something else, something tender. His grip lessened, moved from her wrist to her hand, fingers caressing hers.

"We connected, Dana. You can convince yourself of anything else you want about me. You can say that I'm evil. You can say I used you for my own purposes. I won't deny that. But don't ever try to deny we connected."

She wrenched her hand away. "Stay away from me. Stay away from Mulder. Just leave us alone."

"I can't promise that. But I'll be watching out for you, Dana. Your own private guardian angel. Or maybe a guardian demon. Whichever. I'll be watching you."

She fled. He heard her footsteps through the house, down the stairs. The sound of the car door opening then being slammed, the ignition coming on and the car being driven fast out of the driveway. He lit another cigarette, leaned back in the chair.

"I'll be watching you, my love."

 

Fin