Title: Algernon
Author: Becka F.
Written: 2000
Classification: S
Rating: PG
Spoilers: Requiem
Disclaimer: I wonder what would happen if I didn't put one? Would they sue? Anyway, just to be safe, they aren't mine. Never were. Probably never will be. They belong to all the geniuses behind the X-Files...*insert more sucking up here*

Summary: It's a race against time. Literally. 'I know that line that connects the earth to the sky is my hourglass.'


Today I think I forgot about her.

I once knew a woman. I don't know her name and I can't picture her face, but I'm almost positive I knew her.

Maybe we were friends. We might have even been lovers. I have this feeling that we were close.

I wish I hadn't forgotten about her. Before her memory faded away, I know she was all I used to think about. She was my one reason to make it through this. Without that last memory, what do I have to live for?

Today, it went dark again for a long time. I sat huddled in the corner, praying I would remember her. When the lights came back on, my head hurt so much it felt as though someone was trying to take what was left in there away from me too. Even after all that, I was still no closer to remembering her.

I want to remember that woman so badly it hurts. I feel as though she was my only hope to survive. That one link I needed to get back what I had before.

Maybe I led a meaningless existence. Sometimes I pretend I was someone important. I try to picture what I did, but I soon forget what I'm trying to pretend.

This isn't living anymore.

Tomorrow, I might not remember that I'm trying to remember her. I wonder if she's thinking about me like I'm thinking about her. I wonder if she misses me. Maybe she doesn't. Maybe I wasn't someone important to her. Maybe she's trying to forget me.

Hell, this may be for the best.


It's getting dark now; The Man must be coming back to see me.

He comes every night, and I swear I've never seen him without a cigarette hanging out of his mouth. But, I have to admit it suits him.

I know he's important in all of this. That's probably why I remember him and forget everything else. I once tried asking him about that, but I couldn't get the words out. It was as though he was forcing me to be silent.

But this time, something's different.

"Who are you?" I hear myself say.

He smiles.

"Hello Fox."

"Fox? Is that my name? Fox?"

"Yes."

He's letting me speak.

Everything is flooding back to me now. My life, my work, my sister. Everything.

He's letting me remember.

Oh my God.

Scully.

I look up at him, enraged.

"TAKE ME TO HER!"

I don't sound human.

I'm frantic now.

"God dammit! How long has it been?"

"Almost a year now Fox. She's waiting for you."

His arrogance infuriates me.

"You bastard! So help me God if she has been hurt, or--"

All of a sudden, he disappears and everything turns white. It's blinding. I try to yell, but I can't. I feel myself being pulled downwards. I lose track of all my senses. I feel nauseous. I close my eyes, praying it will all be over soon.


Grass. How long has it been since I've felt grass?

I know I'm in a field somewhere. I could be anywhere.

Beaten and bruised, I manage to stand up, albeit shakily. My head is pounding. I try to get a sense of my surroundings, but fail miserably. I spot a cornfield not too far away.

I scoff bitterly.

I'm not ignorant. I can almost hear him mocking me.

Remember the corn, Fox?

Grudgingly I tread through the wispy green meadow. It looks as though the sun is ascending. It's only early in the day. God, how good does it feel to look at the sun?

I take my mind off the sun for a second, and pick up speed once I realize who I'm headed towards.

How the hell could I forget? I must have hit my head harder than I thought.

I wonder what the other abductees are doing. Have they been given this gift as well? Or is it just me because I'm privileged enough to be called his son?

I don't know how long I have, or why exactly he let me come back here. I'm almost certain I'm only here temporarily. I've accepted the fact that he's probably only going to allow me a glimpse of Scully before snatching me back again. But the sad fact is, I'd give up tomorrow for just five more minutes with her.

Even if that is all I get.

I think I see a highway up ahead. I don't recognize the surroundings at all, but hopefully I'll be able to get my bearings once I know what road I'm on.

If I'm anywhere close to where I'm supposed to go, that is.


"Again, thanks a lot."

I didn't think truckers were so friendly.

"Hey man, if you say you're from the FBI, I ain't gonna question ya. Plus I could use a little company."

Frankly that scares me a little, but I deal with it.

"Where ya from, Agent...?"

"Mulder. "

"Right. Agent Mulder."

It feels strangely good to hear him say that.

"Well, I work in DC, but we're on our way to Alexandria, I presume?"

I could hardly believe my luck that I was in Virginia.

"Yeah, that's right. That was a pretty dumb question for me to ask, now wasn't it?"

"Nah, I'm having an off day too buddy, don't sweat it."

If he only knew.

"Hell man, you ain't got no idea how hard this life is. Being a trucker isn't a walk through the rosebushes. It's hell. I'd give anything to have what you got."

I chuckle bitterly.

"You think that was funny? I'm serious bro. You have no idea what I gotta go through. I have it worse off than anyone."

Again, I chuckle. This time he gives me a look, and I figure I'd better shut up. I have neither the strength nor the balls to argue, so I step back. It's not on my agenda to get on a 300 pound, 6'4 man's bad side anyway.

"Mulder, you could use a shower. And a shave."

Talk about stating the obvious. I bite my tongue, stopping myself from retorting the same.

"Thanks," I reply dryly. But then I look down at myself and nod in agreement.

"Pit stop?"

"Yeah."


The last half of the journey has been long and quiet. I think we're both absorbed too much in our own miserable thoughts that we couldn't be bothered to talk to each other.

Well, semi-miserable.

In approximately one hour, I'll be seeing Scully for the first time in one year. That is, if C.G.B. told me correctly. Hell, for all I know, it could be the year 3000.

Okay, maybe not the year 3000. The surroundings look the same. No hovercrafts yet.

Just for the hell of it, I ask Butch the date.

"October the thirteenth, my man. Friday the thirteenth, even. Spooky."

I find it hard to believe this wasn't planned.

I manage a thank you, and return to my thoughts.

I feel groggy as I try to picture what's changed. If anything has changed. I wonder if she still is with the FBI. I wouldn't be surprised at all if she quit. I always knew she deserved better.

Everything just seems to be happening so fast. I'm having a hard time coming to grips with the fact that I'm going to see her again.


"Butch, I appreciate everything man. You take care now. And no matter what anyone tells you, that was definitely not an airplane."

I can see I have made his year. God, if he only knew.

"You're lucky to have that Scully, Foxy."

Butch is most likely the most illiterate and crude man I have ever met, but he sure could tell the truth.


Well, this is it. I'm standing in front of her door.

Why the hell aren't I knocking?

I suddenly feel dizzy. I close my eyes, trying to put things in perspective.

It's been a year since I have been gone. As far as anyone is concerned, I'm a dead man. And now, after all this time, I have the nerve to just saunter up to Scully's door, knock, and pretend that everything is okay?

I didn't even stop to think about her reaction. How the hell is she going to handle seeing me?

Worse, how the hell am I going to handle seeing the look on her face when she sees me?

I begin to realize that this is probably the biggest mistake I could ever make. Why put her through all that again?

Everything is spinning.

I try to focus. I didn't travel four hours with an extremely overweight truck driver for nothing.

I drove here for her.

I begin to pace, fully realizing the impact of me standing at her threshold. I feel my grasp on reality slowly slipping out from beneath me.

All of a sudden, the door swings open.

"I thought I heard footsteps out here."

I spin around and come face to face with a man. He looks at me as though I'm a threat to society.

"Can I help you?" he asks, taking off his reading glasses.

I'm speechless.

It never even occurred to me. Not once.

I never stopped to think that Scully has probably moved on. I feel my heart sink to my ankles.

"Who is it, David?" a female voice says from inside the apartment.

Oh, God, this isn't how it's supposed to be.

"Who are you?" David asks, ignoring the voice.

Suddenly, an attractive blonde woman appears from behind him. She looks at me quizzically and then looks at David.

I manage to breathe again.

It's not Scully.

"I--I'm sorry," I stutter. "Do I have the wrong apartment?"

David must notice the desperation in my voice, and he softens his tone a little.

"Who are you looking for?" he asks me.

"Scully...Dana Scully?"

The woman perked up.

"Oh right, the FBI agent. She moved out almost a year ago," she says. "I think she mentioned something about staying with her mother."

Her eyes narrow sympathetically.

"So sad."

Sad?

Oh God, I'm so sorry Scully.

"Are you okay, sir?" David asks me, as I feel myself turning about eight shades of green.

Hell no.

I attempt to be sincere.

"Yes, thank you. I'm fine. Thanks a lot for your help, I'm sorry to bother you."

They nod, and retreat back into their apartment slowly.

I guess I'm a sight for sore eyes.


I managed to glimpse at the clock inside Scully's old apartment. It's earlier than I thought.

My stomach growls hungrily, but I don't want to eat. As I drift farther and farther away from the apartment complex, hopelessness surrounds me.

I try to remember what the woman said about Scully moving out. Where did she say she moved to again?

Must have slipped my mind.

I stop dead in my tracks when I realize what's happening.

It didn't just slip my mind.

I'm regressing.


I have been walking for hours. That I'm sure of. As I see the sun slowly approaching the horizon, I realize that I only have a little time left. I know that line that connects the earth to the sky is my hourglass.

He's only given me one day.

None of these street names are familiar to me now. Think Fox, think.

I see a young girl and her mother approaching me on the sidewalk. The mother clutches her daughter and steers her so she avoids walking directly past me. They look somewhat dubious, as though I'm some whack job ready to snap.

Actually, that doesn't seem too far off. I'm past the point of caring, but I'm still taken aback by their reaction. I wonder how well they'd fare if they suddenly were in my position.

I stop feeling sorry for myself when I become fixated on them walking away from me. It's as though I can't take my eyes off them.

That's it.

Margaret.

Scully's staying with her mother.


I've decided that I haven't come all this way for nothing. I'm going to see Scully, and with the little time I have left, I'm going to see her soon.

So I do it the old-fashioned way.

I really have no choice in the matter. If I remembered where Margaret lived, I would already be there.

Instead, I'm stuck in this weather-beaten, graffiti-infested phone booth flipping through torn pages of a more than likely outdated phonebook.

Hey, well what do you know? She's in here. After quickly glancing up to see if anyone is watching, I tear the address out because I know I will forget it.

<'A-choo'>

Quite pleased with myself, I step out of the phone booth. It's colder now that the sun is setting.


"Here ya go," the cab driver said, shifting into park in front of Margaret's house. I double-check the address on the page I tore out.

Yup. Matches.

"Thanks," I say, and step out of the cab. "I'll be right back with your money."

He looks dubious, but I think he sympathizes with me.

Either that or he's scared of me.

"Forget it," he says. "It wasn't a five minute ride anyway."

I stare at him in amazement. I guess all that walking paid off.

I manage a gracious thank-you, and he nods. I know he wants to get the hell out of here. I shut the door and tap the hood of the car. Tires squeal as he drives away.

I slowly turn to face the house. This is it. Go.

I glance up at the big oak tree across the street just in time to see the setting sunlight burst through the branches. I realize I have only minutes.

But after everything that happened today and after the realizations I have come to, that's all I want.

Suddenly, the porch light flips on, and I hear the doorknob turn.

"Is someone out there?"

It's her.

"Dana, come in honey. It's chilly."

I slowly peek around the large tree trunk I'm cowering behind.

They don't see me.

"Mom, I know I heard a car door slam or something. It was really close. Like right outside the house."

I smile. She's so beautiful.

The older woman looks around.

"I don't see anyone, Dana."

"I guess I was hearing things."

Dana looks hopeful. I want to run to her. God, I want to run to her so badly.

Suddenly from deep inside the house I hear a cry. The older woman dashes inside for a moment. The younger woman's gaze follows her but she still lingers on the front porch.

God, if only I could remember their names.

The older woman soon reappears cradling a small child in her arms. She hands it to the younger woman, who receives it with open arms. The older woman stands with them for a couple minutes, and then goes back inside her house.

The mother cuddles her hysterical baby until it stops crying. She talks softly to it, and I see it begin to smile. She sways gently now, rocking the baby back and forth. She gazes lovingly at it nestled safely in her arms. The baby returns the look of adoration with wide eyes. My heart fills with a sadness I cannot describe, and I find it difficult to tear my eyes away from both of them.

All of a sudden I feel a hand on my shoulder. It's The Man. He is staring at the woman and her baby swaying on the front porch as well. He lifts his hand from my shoulder and stands beside me.

"Isn't it wonderful?" he asks me.

"Yes," I say, feeling a lump form in my throat.

"They're okay. I just wanted you to see that."

I know this is all part of something much bigger than I. I nod, solemnly swearing I will do my best to remember that.

"You will," he says, acknowledging my silent promise.

I nod again.

The mother softly kisses the sleeping baby in her arms, and turns to go back inside. Before stepping through the threshold, she turns around once more and gazes up and down the street. Her bright eyes shimmer longingly in the twilight, and I see a tiny tear roll down her cheek.

She reluctantly steps inside, and I hear the door click softly behind her. I turn to The Man, and he is motioning for me to come to him.

I'm being pulled now. The tiny house is getting farther and farther away, and I prepare myself for that blinding light.

I'm going back.


Today I know I accomplished a great feat. I have a memory now. That woman and baby are permanently etched in my mind. Nothing has ever made me feel so alive in such a long time.

The Man came to see me one more time today. Much of his visit I don't really remember, but his parting words to me still linger in my thoughts. Parting words I'm certain mean one day I will see that woman and baby again.

"Not much longer now, Fox. Algernon wouldn't stand a chance against you."


Author's Notes: This is a Mulder POV piece, about a different turn his abduction could have taken. Completely off the top of my head. I was feeling a little creative one night. I added some humour to it as well, because well, without it, it's a pretty dark piece!

If you haven't read the novel, Flowers for Algernon, then you might be a little confused about one of the references. Basically Flowers for Algernon, written by Daniel Keyes, was about a remarkable operation that made both a mouse and human strikingly more intelligent for a period of time. Tested first on a mouse, it was eventually tested on a human who was far less intelligent than normal. It did in fact make both human and mouse smarter, but after a while, they both started to deteriorate back into their original states.

Algernon was the mouse, with whom Charlie, the human, would have "races" (using mazes) with. Algernon beat Charlie in these maze races until one day Charlie beat Algernon - and realized he was getting smarter himself. See where I got the idea now? Hope that helped. If not, check out the book.

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