Title: The G-man's Guide to Unemployment
Authors: Emma Brightman and alanna
Disclaimer: They're not ours.
Category: Humor, MSR
Rating: PG-13 for language
Spoilers: Through "Alone"

Summary: The average American workday is eight hours long. What's Mulder to do when Scully's at the office and he has to play house husband?

 


"I need a new informant."

This is Mulder's first thought as he stands at his window, watching Scully waddle out to her car.

He reminded her this morning that the doctor told her to stop working, but heaven forbid she listen to him.

On the other hand, she said she'd give notice tomorrow, and he fully plans to hold her to that.

He remembers dozens of other times when he stood at this window, waiting for some skulking man to show up and drip pearls of wisdom.

That was fun, in a weird sort of way.

He wants another informant.

This desire is not purely selfish, of course.

Time's a'wasting.

Conspirators to hunt, aliens to kill.

If he's going to bring the Consortium to its knees, he'll need a little extra help.

No more Bureau resources -- hell, no more Bureau expense accounts.

He's not sure which loss saddens him the most.

So, today's task will be to find a new informant.

However, he cannot do this on an empty stomach.

Mulder walks into the kitchen and peruses the breakfast selections.

The best thing about Scully's pregnancy is her increased appetite.

He was reading People Magazine yesterday and saw that Catherine Zeta- Jones gained fifty pounds during her pregnancy.

Scully's not quite there yet, but he has high hopes for her.

Actually, he's the one putting on the pounds lately.

Yes, the abduction was a terrible ordeal, but sometimes he thinks that the real tragedy is that he didn't look all harrowed and gaunt when he returned.

Sure, his face was bony and not very attractive, but aside from flabby muscles, he hadn't lost a pound.

Weren't traumatic incidents like that supposed to be a great weight-loss technique?

When they were watching Survivor 2 last week, that cute blonde was moaning that she lost somewhere around 25 lbs. in the Outback.

Scully had not been amused by his sidelong glance at her as they watched it together.

"I'm pregnant. I'm entitled to eat whatever the hell I want, Mulder."

At his indulgent smile, she raised an eyebrow and said, "Besides, I hate to tell you this, but once this kid is born, I'm never going to have the same figure I used to have."

"More of you to love," he'd replied with a chuckle.

But then she gave a pointed glance at his own belly and said, "And there's more of you to love these days, too."

Ouch.

Okay, so he has been eating more than usual lately.

He has to get his strength back, right?

And it's not his fault that he hasn't been able to take up his jogging routine again.

His lung capacity isn't back up to full strength yet.

It has nothing to do with the fact that his pale legs don't look as good in running shorts as they used to.

So.

Breakfast.

These days, Scully has a muffin fetish.

Oh, sure, the technical term is "craving".

But he has seen the way she looks at those muffins, with a vaguely orgasmic gleam in her eyes.

Not to mention the fact that after they made love the other night, she immediately got out of bed, cleaned herself up, then headed into the kitchen to nuke an apple cinnamon muffin.

He looks over the selection on the kitchen counter.

Banana nut, blueberry, poppy seed, and something he can't quite place.

Hmm, yesterday Oprah had a cooking-themed show, which included -- of course -- muffins.

She mentioned some website that sold ones with cappuccino and strawberry cream cheese flavors.

He'll have to go by Oprah.com today and get that URL.

But today, he's going to go for the poppy seed.

After all, the good thing about no longer being employed by the FBI is that he doesn't have to endure random drug testing, and opium is derived from poppy seeds.

He remembers one of his background checks when they were off the X-Files two years ago.

Some guy was claiming that his positive drug test for heroin was because of a hamburger bun.

Whatever.

Mulder nukes it for thirty seconds, then takes the plate and a glass of orange juice over to the desk.

Booting up the computer takes only a few minutes, but logging onto his ISP takes even longer.

With a mouthful of muffin, he loudly screams, "You worthless piece of shit!" as the damn ISP promptly disconnects him.

He'd go ahead and order a cable modem, except he and Scully are finally starting to discuss living arrangements, and he seriously doubts they're going to be making room in his apartment for a nursery.

Oh, that's another thing he can do today: shop for baby stuff.

He has seen Scully's redecorated apartment, and he doesn't think that Pottery Barn makes cribs.

And frankly, he's not sure he trusts her taste in nursery furniture.

She'd probably go for some Mission-style crib, and while that's all well and good for grown-ups, he doesn't want his kid to have an arts-and-crafts design fixation before the age of five.

Impending fatherhood is bringing out his mushy side.

Maybe something white, with that little carving stuff along the top in a cool teddy bear design.

And frilly bedding, even if it's a boy.

He's still mad Scully won't just go and get another damn sonogram so he'll know once and for all whether it's a boy or a girl.

He keeps needling her about it, but every time he does so, she insists she'd rather be surprised.

Women.

Hmph.

So, today's To-Do List:

find a new informant.

Order more muffins.

Shop for frilly baby furniture.

Go for a jog to get rid of his gut, perhaps with a stop at a tanning salon along the way.

Where to find an informant?

Decisions, decisions.

Skinner seems out of the loop these days, so that's not an option.

Maybe a classified ad would work.

Ah, the Washington Post will let him submit a classified ad online.

He clicks on the appropriate links, then begins to write it.

"WANTED: Shadow government informant, preferably with knowledge of the impending alien invasion.

Must speak in cryptic, unintelligible sentences, never reveal any helpful information, and be able to place the truth between two lies."

He grins at how fun that was.

After a few minutes' careful consideration, he types his cellular number.

It has voice mail and caller ID, and is easier to change than his land line, if necessary.

Mulder clicks "send", then gives his credit card number.

It's expensive, but at least he has a good severance package.

Good thing he let himself get fired instead of quitting.

He still has a huge inheritance, but that's all tied up in rapidly-depreciating investments thanks to the nose-diving economy.

Those last few paychecks will come in handy, what with the new baby expenses.

Cribs and frilly bedding aren't cheap. Next on the To-Do List is to order more muffins.

He glances at the clock:

it's only 8:57, and he has another eight hours before Scully gets home.

Maybe he'll fit in a nap after the shopping.

That and the jog will be tiring, of course.

Gee, he never thought he'd be spending quality time at Oprah.com, but there you have it.

Before he can click on the "food" link, he's sidetracked by "Breathing Space Gallery:

How do you find tranquility?

Capture it.

Share this beautiful moment with the world."

He bookmarks it to show to Scully.

Heaven knows she has been just a little bit snarky lately, though he'll never let on to her.

And besides, this whole pregnancy is supposed to be a "beautiful moment", but she's not treating it as such.

He hopes it's just hormones.

A little frilliness will do her good.

Unfortunately, the "Breathing Space Gallery" is just a bunch of girly pictures of things like bluebonnets and mountains.

He'll show it to her anyway.

She has been quite weepy lately, so that photo of the waterfall will probably set off the waterworks, no pun intended.

He kind of likes when she cries, because she gets very cuddly afterward.

A couple of times it has even led to sex, and that's always a good thing.

He finally goes back over to the food section and follows the links to the muffin website.

Just to be safe, he chooses one of each kind, and even pays extra for overnight shipping.

Before he submits the order, he goes back and changes the quantities to three.

Damn muffin cravings.

Mulder spends another hour at the Oprah website.

He wonders if the sudden warmth in his apartment is an estrogen-induced hot flash, but gets up and adjusts the thermostat to be safe.

Glancing out the window, he notices that it's a beautiful day in the neighborhood.

This brings on thoughts of Mr. Rogers, and how he'll probably end up watching it with the kid when he or she gets old enough.

He opens a window and lets in some fresh air, except today's another smog alert day in D.C. and the air isn't very fresh.

He closes the window and goes back to the newspaper website, searching the real estate ads for a house out in the country but with an easy commute into town.

Thirty minutes later, he concludes that such a place doesn't exist.

Damn.

Despite the smog, the sunshine beckons him.

Jogging is on his to-do list, but the second muffin he ate while shopping for muffins hasn't yet settled in his stomach, so he decides to postpone that until the afternoon.

It's now a quarter to eleven.

The glance at the clock provides inspiration:

he still doesn't know how long the drive to the hospital is!

This is not good.

Sure, Scully has already begun arrangements to have the baby at the hospital near her place in Georgetown, but what happens if they still haven't moved in together and they're at his place when she goes into labor?

This is a very important problem.

He must solve it.

So, after sitting around in his boxers all morning, Mulder finally gets dressed.

Yesterday he'd gone shopping for some civilian togs, and he eyes the black jacket and tight black pants he bought.

Well, the pants weren't designed to be tight, but he'd bought them for the near future when his gut disappeared.

He doesn't have the energy to try to coordinate an outfit right now, though, so he settles on a gray pullover and black jeans.

Thanks to his $500 state-of-the-art digital watch, he can precisely time the hospital route, down to the millisecond.

To best approximate the conditions, he jogs down to his car, but mentally subtracts the eighteen seconds it takes for him to catch his breath once he gets to the ground floor.

Multiple injuries over the years have luckily burned the exact route to the hospital into his brain.

He keeps close to the speed limit, just to be safe, since he no longer has a badge and therefore can't give cops the excuse that he was speeding to a crime scene.

The damn cell phone's ring nearly throws off his rhythm as he turns the corner toward the emergency room.

He picks up the phone and quickly remembers to answer it with, "Luder," the name he'd given in the classified ad.

Sure, it has only been a few hours and nobody has seen it yet, but you never know.

"'Luder', Mulder?

What the hell?"

Ah, it's his dearly beloved on the line.

"Never mind," he replies.

Scully isn't mollified.

"No, really, Mulder.

What's up with that?"

"I'll tell you later," he snaps, then turns up the charm.

"So, what's up, sweetie?"

"You're not going to start giving me pet names, are you?"

"Well, you ARE about to give birth to my child, honey."

He stresses the last word.

"I think I'm entitled." Her sigh practically makes the phone tremble.

"Okay, fine.

But only in bed." A fair bargain, that.

"So, as I said, what's up?"

"I finally quit the Bureau.

Are you happy?"

"Yes," he says, a boast in his voice.

"Did you give Doggett that gift certificate to Outback Steakhouse like we planned?"

She hesitates.

"No, I gave him something else."

He pulls into a parking space at the emergency room, and checks his watch.

Nine minutes and forty-three seconds.

Not bad.

"What did you give him?"

"I'll tell you later.

Anyway, I'm going to head home early.

You don't have plans for this afternoon, do you?"

Mulder mentally checks the To-Do List.

He still has to shop for frilly baby furniture and go for a jog.

"Nope, no plans."

"Okay, meet me at my apartment in an hour.

As luck would have it, one of the women in personnel happened to know of a Lamaze class that starts today at 1:30.

It's not too far from my place."

Lamaze, huh?

Despite all his obsessive planning lately, he hadn't thought of Lamaze.

He curses himself for forgetting to plan yet another thing.

He owes it to her, after missing so many months of her pregnancy.

Scully is saying something else, but he can't hear her over the wail of the ambulance sirens pulling into the ER.

"Come again?" he yells into the phone.

Come again, indeed.

Maybe Lamaze will make her frisky.

They can practice breathing techniques in bed this evening.

"I said that I'll see you in an hour," Scully says.

"And don't forget to bring muffins."

END


 

Authors' Notes:

Alanna here.

Who else loved Mulder's Oprah comment in "Alone"? :)

Emma and I got to talking on AIM, and this story is the result.

I provided the prose, and she contributed most of the ideas that went into the story.

Never expected to write a post-ep on Sunday night, but the idea was too much fun to resist.

We hope it brought a smile to your face!

 

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