Title: Embraced
Author: Shawen A. Greer
Author's page: https://www.fanfiction.net/u/16134/
Written: 08/14/2000
Category: X-Files
Genre: Romance
Words: 9843
Rating: PG-13
Disclaimer: Character Jordan Auspex belongs to the author. X-Files and all other characters belong to CC, 1013, and Fox. The clan Tremere was respectfully referenced from The Masquerade.
Feedback: I absolutely love to get feedback Please check out my other stories and poetry at The Hall of 'X' www.geocities.com/Area51/Quasar/8840
Classification: MSR, mild horror

Summary: When faced with unspeakable evil, sometimes love is your only hope. (written in response to a challenge to write an MSR story where Mulder is a vampire)

With special thanks to my beta reader Georgia for her wonderful insight!

Wednesday, 9:25 pm
Gertie's Bar

He has been here for hours trying to fill the emptiness that is so painfully apparent on his handsome face, attempting to fill the void with a bottle of cheap scotch. I remain in the shadows, as I have done so many times before, watching and waiting until the time is right for me to introduce myself and offer him the gift. He seems different tonight, almost unknowingly aware of my presence, beckoning me to save him from the lies of this life and lead him to the truth of eternity.

Here I am again, pouring my sorrows disguised as cheap liquor into a shallow glass and hovering alone at the corner barstool that has become my comfort lately. My appearance here has been so regular since they closed the X-Files again, with the usual political rhetoric, that Tracey the barmaid has my bottle and glass on the bar without even asking for my order. Here in this dimly lit corner, smelling of stale beer and cheap perfume I am now a regular, which provides for me some sense of normality in my life instead of the usual stares and whispers I have grown accustomed to. I had enjoyed the ability to hide in the basement, alone in the shadows with my own agenda, but now I am forced into the light again, having been re-assigned to the Violent Crimes Unit.

Scully spends most of her time at Quantico, and I refuse to burden her with my manic-depressive outlook as of late on the few brief occasions that we meet. It isn't as if she can't see through my weak attempt at hiding it from her though, obvious in her need to call me five times a day for any number of vague excuses to ask if I'm ok. At the weekly briefings, she greets me with that concerned and marginally scared look in those beautiful blue eyes of hers. God, those eyes! If I didn't already love her, they alone would be enough to engulf me and I could think of nothing that I would want more than to drown in them, not in death but in life. It seems now as I grow older, I desire a life so complete and so pleasant that it could make me forget all the evil that I have seen, but there is no measure of happiness that could replace the darkness that has surrounded me.

Except my Scully, the beacon of light that chases the darkness just by her presence, but how can I possibly tell her how much I care about her and everything she means to me after all the pain and loss that she has suffered because of me. She deserves so much more than a man who is a constant reminder of every painful memory.

"You know, hemlock would work much faster and probably taste better than this watered-down shit."

I was so absorbed in my self-pity that it was as if the tall beauty appeared out of nowhere, apparent by my startled jump at the sound of her voice and the small splash from my glass.

"I'm sorry, what?" I asked, mopping up the droplets from the bar and my hand with the cocktail napkin provided.

"I said may I join you?" she laughed at my awkwardness, a sweet melodic laugh that for a moment seemed to brighten my lonely corner.

I tipped my hand toward the stool next to me as an invitation, cautioning her at the same time that I was probably not the best company. She replied that she was, and that brought an unexpected smile to my hardened face. Having taken her seat beside me, I saw for the first time the beautiful woman who was unfortunate enough to desire my company. Her skin was as white as Damask porcelain and her dark hair flowed long and straight down her slender body to her waist where a pair of black leather pants began. Being weak when in comes to a woman in leather, I found it difficult at first to bring my eyes back up to where they began. Eventually able to tear my gaze away from her thought provoking lower body, I managed to slowly raise my eyes to the tight fitting gray shirt that topped off the package and then to the most piercing blue eyes I had ever seen. They weren't the warm blue of the ocean like Scully's, but an ice blue that almost chilled you with a glance. I found myself speechless and unable to break the steady gaze that she had started knowing somehow at that moment that I was in trouble, but at the time, I didn't realize the full implication of that suspicion.

"I don't mean to intrude," she began, "it's just that I have seen you in here so many times and noticed that you were always alone and rather sullen, I thought maybe you'd like to talk."

"Talk about what," I thought to myself. The conspiracies, my sister's alleged abduction by aliens, being in love with my partner and my best friend who it just so happens has had so many precious things in her life destroyed because of me, or just that fact that I am alone, so alone that no amount of companionship eases the loneliness except for her. Instead, I decided on "You might say I'm a loner, so to speak."

"I can understand that," she nodded her head knowingly, "I tend to enjoy my own solitude most of the time. It seems that I never quite fit in you might say." She paused for a moment lost in some uncomfortable memory before adding, "I'm sorry, how rude of me," she said extending her hand, " I'm Jordan Auspex."

I took her hand firmly in my own, and was surprised at the strength possessed by such a frail looking woman. "I'm Mulder."

"Mulder?" she asked her arched eyebrow punctuating the curiosity on her face.

"It's a long story." I shook my head with a silent chuckle. I learned long ago that the bar scene was not the place to reveal a name like Fox.

"Well, I've got time, it's early yet. Maybe you could walk me home. These days there are unspeakable dangers in the darkness."

Unspeakable dangers were the mildest of the evil and the darkness, that I knew first hand, and I found myself again captured by her chilling eyes, unable to look away and break the spell. I was under her control, a willing victim, and I nodded my head in agreement of the proposed walk knowing what evil might await me. I carelessly tossed enough money to take care of my bar bill, plus a generous tip for Tracey, onto the high polished counter without ever breaking from her gaze. Her long fingers laced with mine, and she led me through the heavy wooden door and out into the darkness.

My head was screaming for me to wake up, to snap out of the spell she had cast over me and find some excuse to get away quickly, but the scotch I had consumed dulled it to white noise. I knew that I was in danger if I couldn't regain my senses now, but the power she now held over me was strengthened by my own despair. The streets were filled with the sound of laughter and disorder, and I remember a random splattering of faces before me as we walked silently in the night.

Still in my haze of confusion, I found myself at the Reflecting Pool unsure of how much time had past. Ironically, we stopped one bench over from the one I normally share with Scully as Jordan spoke words of love, and of life and forever. My silent plea became "Oh Scully, where are you? Please help me!" as I found myself terrified and intrigued by this experience. But, you were nowhere to be found as you respected my privacy and my need to be alone. My lovely enchantress slowly straddled my lap accompanied by the sound of rubbing leather, and I shivered unconsciously as I felt her tongue lick my neck seductively from the collar of my white t-shirt to the tender spot just behind my ear. I had met her kind before, had researched all there was to know. Her powers were obvious as she held such control over me with her piercing gaze, but I could not look away. I wanted to run as if my life depended on it, for surely it did, but I was still and compliant, bound by the restraints of her enchantment. I tried to scream but the sound remained silent, lost somewhere between the thought and the action.

Her voice filled my ear with whispers of desires and power, and I nodded my clouded head slowly in an admission of my want for such things. Zealous in the pursuit of her prey, she wasted no time and I cried out at the excruciating pain that pierced the side of my neck and my hands immediately clutched at the silken strands of her hair that covered us. She latched onto me so tightly that it was as if she were actually part of me, and soon my arms slowly released their tension and fell to my sides in defeat. It didn't hurt anymore, in fact my body felt rather numb and light as I opened my eyes willing this to be a dream. In the trees that faced me across the wide expanse of The Pool, I could see lightning bugs dancing in the darkness, blinking in random flashes like a world of Christmas Trees as the hum in my ears became deafening. The cold tingling of numbness started at my feet and rose gradually up my body like a silent caress until my eyes closed again from sheer exhaustion.

The darkness grew heavy around me and I found it too taxing on my strength to even breathe, yet my lungs continued to function more out of habit than from need. A hand gently stroked my weary brow and I prayed with all my heart to a God that I had always questioned for it to be Scully, here to rescue me from the pain and fate of my stupidity. However, after much effort to open my eyes, I was face to face with my sinister beauty as her full lips still stained with the red of my blood pressed kisses to my open palm.

"You're dying Fox," she whispered as her kisses slowly worked their way up my arms, and I shivered though I'm not sure if it was from the cold I now felt or from her touch.

"What have you done to me?" I asked, though I already knew the answer.

"I've given you the power to choose your destiny, my love," she almost purred as she held my face in her hands, "You can now have peace in your tumultuous life, either by death or by life eternal that I can bestow upon you, giving you power beyond your imagination."

I had always thought of death as a final refuge, an everlasting darkness void of any pain or confusion, but now as I was suddenly faced with its reality, I feared it's near grasp. Though the thought of the end of my quest with all its twists and turns in the search for the truth was so tempting, and yet the thought of never seeing Scully again filled me with a sorrow so great that I knew what I had to choose. I had to accept the offer of life I was given, in the hopes that it was not too late for Scully to save me. We would think of something, together, for in our unity we were invincible, or at least I hoped so.

"Help me," I gasped with the only remaining air in my body. I feared that I had made the wrong choice at the sight of the wicked smile that formed on her venomous lips.

"Fox, you made me very happy," she said as she moved off of my lap and took a seat beside me on the bench, "you'll be ok, my love, I promise to take very good care of you."

A moan was all that I could manage in response, as I watched her bare her sharp, white fangs against the soft skin of her inner wrist and offered it to my dry mouth as the small stream of red began to flow. She told me to drink and I immediately obeyed, suddenly filled with a hunger unlike I had ever experienced before, and held her arm so tightly to my mouth that I feared I would break it. I felt warmth begin to fill my body again, though it was more like the burning of a fire than a comfort. Her back was arched with her head thrown back in pleasure and I could hear the soft moans that escaped her open mouth, my ears filled with the resonant beats of our united hearts as they pounded in death instead of life. I felt like an animal unable to control the unquenchable need in my stomach, and found myself wild eyed and crazed when she roughly pulled her arm from my grasp.

"Easy baby, not too much. You need to take it slow and give your body time to adjust," she said in a motherly tone and as if in response to her warning, an unyielding pain developed in my stomach that caused me to double over onto the ground and cry out in agony. She held me in her arms there on the cold ground, my body shaking violently as if I suffered from a fever.

"It'll be ok, love, this is the worst. Just hang in there with me, you'll be alright," came her voice soft and reassuring as she rocked my tired body through the progression of my transformation. This was the last memory that I have of my embrace as I laid in the arms of this strange woman in my madness, having foolishly trusted in spite of all that I know, to find myself the prey of a vampire.

Thursday, 10:27 am
Mulder's Apartment

The sound of Scully's voice pulled me from the darkness and I mumbled a response, as I tried to turn my aching body in her direction, but I soon gave up from sheer exhaustion. I was in my bed now, safe in the familiar blankets that I had grown accustomed to, her weight barely tipping the mattress as she sat beside me shaking me to consciousness. I knew that Scully would save me, even from what was evidently a horrible nightmare, though my body hurt in places that I didn't realize one could feel pain. I must have really overdone it this time, my head was spinning trying to piece together the night before, and the pain in my stomach, though less intense than I remembered, was now accompanied by a strong need to be sick.

"Come on Mulder," she begged with both concern and irritation, "Skinner is going to have your ass in a sling if you don't get your act together. I've managed to cover for you so far but you have to get moving. Let's get you into the shower and drown you in some really strong coffee."

"I always knew you wanted to get me in the shower, Scully," I managed to tease with a croak, though I'm not sure if she ignored me or just didn't hear me. No sooner than the words left my mouth, my body began to shiver again from the chill deep inside me, and I wondered how my flesh could be so numb, and yet still feel so cold.

"Mulder!" she cried and she was on her feet as her medical training sprang into action.

She rolled me onto my back with one great tug fueled by sheer adrenaline and fear, and the terror seized my own heart as I heard her loud gasp at what I was sure was the sight of blood on the shoulder of my white shirt. Oh dear God, it hadn't been a dream, and the image of Jordan pierced my memory as her fangs had pierced my flesh.

"Oh my God, Mulder, you're bleeding!" That cool Scully exterior began to erode quickly in her obvious panic as she grabbed a handful of the sheet and pressed it to my skin and the now dead artery beneath it.

"Not anymore," I quipped as sarcastically as a dead man could.

"What happened to you Mulder? Were you in a fight? This is serious, you could need stitches," she questioned as she quickly checked my vitals and looked for a first aid kit.

"I believe what I would need for a bite is a tetanus shot, Dr. Scully," I said, but was scared at the strangeness of my own voice. "However, I don't think there is much sense in that either."

"Something bit you Mulder? Where did this happen, we have to call animal control right away! Rabid animals tend to gravitate to populated areas for food, their fear of man abated by their sickness."

"No, Scully, it was a woman I met in the bar. She... "

"Ok, I've heard enough," she established with an irritated tone. "Mulder, regardless of any perverted scenario, as a doctor, I feel that I need to inform you that human bites are worse than that of an animal. The saliva in a human's mouth... "

It was my turn to interrupt, "She wasn't human, Scully." I paused for the struggle of a deep breath before I continued. "She was a vampire."

I could see the look on her face clearly, even if I wasn't facing her. It was that skeptical look that I had seen hundreds of times before as she processed my claim.

"A vampire," was all she said in that perfected Scully tone.

I nodded; too weak for the banter that we normally shared in my attempts to prove to her the mysteries of the unknown. There was no debate this time, there was evidence, and I was it.

I heard the flip of my partner's cell phone and with every ounce of strength that I had, I sat up and pulled it from her hands as they shakily pushed the buttons in an attempt to get help. I disconnected the line and fell back into the softness of the pillow below me as the tears began to fill my eyes.

"Mulder, what are you doing?" she screamed, "You need help!" She clawed at the phone that I clutched in my hands, but I refused to let go.

"Who are you going to call, Scully...Ghostbusters?" I tried to yell. "There is no help now, except death!"

The silence was almost deafening as we were submerged in the darkness of despair, searching for answers to questions that we didn't know existed. She sat down on the bed beside me and gently took my hand in hers, and I closed my eyes to block out everything but the feel of her hands covering mine, and the soft passes of her thumb as it reassuringly rubbed my knuckles. There was so much that I needed to tell her about what was to come and what she must do, but I needed her touch so much more right now, and I squeezed her hand tighter as if that alone would hold me here. I knew that these had to be our last hours together, for if the folklore were true, Jordan would be back after sundown for the pursuit of my first kill and the completion of my transformation. This would put Scully and anyone else around me in grave danger, and yet I knew that someone had to put an end to this as quickly as it would begin. If all of my information and research in the past were true, I would return here before sunrise tomorrow, and I had to make sure that someone was waiting here for me, with a stake to release me of this curse.

Her voice was shaky and quiet as she spoke, reminding me much of the young girl I used to know, whose innocence had vanished as a result of so many unspeakable truths. "Mulder, your hands are freezing," she observed. "So you're telling me that you are a... a..."

"No, Scully," I said before she could finish, "not yet anyway."

"But you're saying that you will be," she paused with a loud sigh before she continued. I could sense that fear began to outweigh her skepticism, afraid of the possibility she could be wrong in her disbelief. "Isn't there anything that we can do? Certainly there has to be a way to reverse this...right?"

Her voice trailed off in a plea, and I was unable to speak any words to deny such hope, as I found looking at her an even greater challenge. The tears were constant streams now and she roughly brushed them from her chin with the back of her hand. Maybe there was a chance, but it was it was almost impossible, and even more risky, however, as I looked into Scully's tear-streaked face, I knew that it was worth any risk for her and I handed her back her phone.

"Call Skinner," I sighed, "we'll need his help."

My strength was almost gone and I rolled back over to my side and curled up in the tightest ball that I could as if it could protect me from all the evil that surrounded me. Skinner would come and together we would formulate a plan. Until then sleep once again called to me and I was too weak not to answer it. The last thing I remember is hearing Scully on her cell phone trying to explain something she herself did not understand.

"Yes, Sir, I'm at Mulder's apartment."

"No, Sir, it's a little more complicated than that. I think you need to get here as quickly as possible, Mulder needs your help."

"No, Sir, I'm afraid I can't tell you any more than that, only that it's urgent oh, and Sir, please consider this conversation classified."

12:05 pm

The familiar voice of my superior roused me from my tormented sleep, though I found it nearly impossible to bring myself to complete consciousness. It was as if a powerful drug controlled me and my body was helpless against its effects.

"Agent Mulder," he said in that deep and questioning voice that revealed his concern, "Agent Scully has filled me in on," he paused, "the situation as it were, would you care to elaborate as to the nature of your wound."

I closed my eyes to the dim light that peeked through the closed blinds and surrounded me, and I laughed a weak and tired laugh as I pondered the tale, wondering myself at the believability, but the increasing pain in my stomach and the numbness that I felt in my extremities were enough to convince me of the truth. I sought for the words in my sleepy confusion and relayed the events of the previous night as they had unfolded. My eyes remained closed, yet I could picture their faces looking from me to each other in questioning disbelief.

"So, why am I here Agent?"

Skinner, true to form. Question, analyze, and get directly to the point. "You are here, Sir, to insure that my "becoming" never completes. One way or another."

His face remained expressionless as he evaluated the task set before him. "Agent Mulder, not to say that the desire to kill you has never crossed my mind, but am I to understand that you asked me here for the possible task of putting a stake through your heart because you have become a member of the undead? Tell me that is not what I heard." I knew that secretly his irritation was more from his own fear than from anger, and I tried to smile, though unreassuringly.

"That wasn't going to be Plan A." I joked. "Actually more of a Plan, oh I don't know, D or so."

"Mulder," the sweet voice of Scully interrupted, "what are we supposed to do?"

The hours that followed were filled with folklore and legend as I struggled in my lethargic state to warn them of the probable upcoming events. Jordan was most certainly a dangerous creature, her power increased by her obvious intelligence and apparent ability to read the minds of her victims. The hiss of her whisper was still in my head as she spoke of things that I had not given conscious thought to, and had even expressed an apparent jealousy of Scully. One thing was sure in my uncertainty, Scully had to be protected at all costs. I turned to her, and was comforted by the gleam that bounced from the delicate cross that graced her neck, yet found myself unable to continue staring at it without a dull pain forming at my temples. "Scully, most importantly, do not under any circumstances remove that cross from your neck."

Her hand quickly reached up to take the precious metal in her fingers, her eyes showing for the first time the true fear that she tried to contain in her heart.

"Agent Mulder," Skinner began, "what exactly are we up against? The sun will be going down in about two hours. That doesn't give us much time to prepare."

Our conversation was interrupted by a coded knock at the door to which Scully disappeared to answer. She returned moments later followed by the comedy team of Frohike, Langly, and Byers, dressed as though they walked off the set of a bad horror movie. They wore large crucifixes around their necks and carried boxes and bags loaded with a various collection from garlic to holy water, right down to some ominously sharp wooden stakes that appeared to be fashioned from an old croquet set, the rings of color making for a rather cheery form of destruction. They stood their distance away from me, cautiously watching. It was Frohike that spoke first. "So, Mulder, how ya feeling? Well, for a dead guy that is." There was an immediate jab from Langly's elbow. "Ouch!" the shorter vampire hunter howled. "What? It's true!"

Byers being the most diplomatic of the three stepped up from out of the shadows, "I think what he means, Mulder, is that we are here to help. Any way we can."

Scully had evidently called them as I slept, and I was grateful. The more of them there were, the greater the chance that Jordan would be destroyed along with myself should such action become necessary. They appeared to be prepared for any possible situation, both from fear and from determination to save me from the impending fates that waited for me.

Langly settled on the floor and opened his laptop, then pulled his long blonde hair back into a ponytail, a sign that he was ready to get into some heavy techno-research, which no doubt meant hacking into a number of government facilities until he found the answers that would hopefully save me. "Ok, Mulder, now, give me some background on the blood babe you met last night."

I coughed in an effort to clear my dry throat as Scully gently lifted my head and touched a glass of water to my thirsty mouth. The water cooled the burning that I felt, however, having never been a great fan of water to begin with, the taste was metallic and sickening and I shrugged it away, choosing instead the dryness.

"Mulder, you'll dehydrate if you don't drink something," she scolded.

"I think that is the least of my worries and this point," I answered, trying to smile to relieve some of the concern that wrinkled her thoughtful brow. "Her name is Jordan Auspex," I began and paused as all eyes in the room turned to me.

"Auspex? Like as in extrasensory perception, awareness, and premonitions?" Langly asked.

"Precisely that." I confirmed and laid my head back down into the cool pillow. "It's possible we are dealing with a rather ancient clan known as the Tremere. They were known to be visionaries by demeanor, and I have reason to believe that, Jordan specifically, also has the ability to read and control minds."

"Of course she does," Frohike said dropping his arms to his side and shaking his head in frustration. "That should make this a piece of cake."

I described the scene as best as my weary mind could remember about our conversation and the events from the previous evening, and gave a detailed description of my beautiful assailant from the color of her ice blue eyes to her black leather pants.

The latter seemed to perk up Frohike as his head shifted so quickly in my direction I wasn't sure I even saw it move. "Black leather pants?" he exclaimed sounding like a hormonal high school kid, "Now that is tasty!" His eyes focused on some far off place deep in thought, scaring me more than possibly Jordan herself. As if in confirmation of my suspicion, he snapped to attention and in his ever-so-charming way turned to Scully with a mumble of, "Hey, Agent Scully, got any black leather pants?"

She politely ignored him with only a glance in his direction, focusing on her task at hand, which was to unpack and ration out the supplies that were contained in the boxes and bags, more concerned about the situation at hand than to match wits with Frohike. Quite frankly, I thought it noble of her considering the unfair advantage she would have in such a match.

My head was becoming clearer and my strength was returning a little, and I knew that could only mean one thing; the sun was setting and darkness was beginning to creep into my room and my soul. "Ok everyone, we don't have much time. The basic run down is this. If Jordan is killed before I make my first kill, everything reverts back to the way it was and I will be restored to my old self again." I turned to Skinner, "Sorry about that, Sir." I smiled. "If I do well feed, for lack of a more politically correct word, then the stakes are raised a little. Not only must Jordan be destroyed, but my victim cannot die. If the victim dies, my transformation will complete regardless of what happens to my blood babe as Langly so eloquently put it."

I continued my crash course in vampire legend as I made my way from the bathroom to my dresser, cleaning the dried blood that still stained my neck and changing into a clean shirt. I assigned them each a perimeter and instructed them what to do. "A vampire can only be killed by a stake through the heart. Not the lung, not the stomach, you basically get one shot. Anything else will simply piss her off. The other things only buy you time. Garlic is said to ward vampires away, but it has been rumored that others are drawn to it; both may in fact be legends. The crosses and holy water will burn her and will protect you somewhat, but they will not kill her. Weaken her with them and then stake her quickly. Do not remove the stake! I can't say that any more emphatically!"" I turned to my superior and highly regarded friend, "Sir, let me apologize now for the dangerous situation that you will be in, but due to your size and your training, I need you to be on hand here in the apartment and the hallway just outside. She will make every attempt to get in, and you stand the best chance of overpowering her. Do not think lightly of her power and her strength." Remembering one other detail of my encounter I took his arms in each of my hands and spoke clearly, "Do not look into her eyes. Whatever you do Sir, do not become entranced by her eyes, I believe they are the source of her power. If she can't entrance you, she can't take you." He nodded his understanding, determination flashing in his eyes as I saw his jaw flex undoubtedly at the clenching of his teeth.

My final instructions were for Scully. There were so many things that I wanted to say, that I feared I may never get to say, but the touch of her hand on my face when I stopped in front of her told me that she already knew them. "Scully, I want you to go somewhere that has a lot of people. A bar, the hospital, I don't care where, just make it somewhere you wouldn't normally go and somewhere very public."

"Mulder, I'm not going anywhere. If what you're saying is even remotely possible, I can't even imagine the injuries that could be sustained. As a medical doctor I have to stay."

"But, Scully," I tried to reason, "I have reason to believe that Jordan will go after you because you," I paused trying to find the right words to say in front of so many eyes, "are my partner. And that puts you in a very dangerous situation, more so than anyone else."

"Mulder, I took an oath, and I can't turn my back on that regardless of the circumstance or the nature of the...affliction. You said it yourself, Mulder, I'm your partner. And partners don't leave while the other one may be in danger."

My eyes fell to the floor as I shook my head in defeat and a nervous laugh escaped me. "Ok, Scully, you win." Then with all seriousness I forced myself to look at her one last time so that I could ensure that she understood my final instruction, "But remember what I said about your cross...no matter what, ok?"

"Ok," she said slowly, her eyes staring at me as if I were a stranger. The last bit of light disappeared from the window and I saw Scully through somewhat distorted vision. "Mulder, your eyes," she uttered almost inaudibly, "They are like ice."

I watched the fear as it rose inside her and she swallowed it back down, face to face with her disbelief. The empty horror in her eyes was more than I could bear and I turned away from her and hid my face from the others. "It's time." I announced and the four men gathered their supplies and ran to their assigned posts, faithful friends willing to face the mouth of hell itself in order to rescue me from it.

Hours passed and Scully and I sat alone, separated by the expanse of the room, silent and searching for what to say. I remained in the shadows, hiding the evidence of my transformation in the darkness. She remained in the light as if it were a safeguard from her seeing whatever horror she had faced in my eyes.

The pain in my empty stomach began to intensify again, and I pulled the blanket off my bed in one graceful tug, and huddled with it in my darkened corner trying to drive away the chill of death that was shaking my body.

"Mulder," I heard her say, softly and cautiously, "Are you alright? Can I help you?"

The only help I needed right now, she could not provide. For I knew that at this phase of my becoming, the only thing that would ease the pain and the chill was blood. "No, Scully, just stay away from me please. I can't... it's best that I am alone. You should have left when I told you to."

The sound of her footsteps brushing the carpet were to my ears as loud as if her heels clicked over a hardwood floor, hollow and echoing as she came to me against my wishes. I knew that she would. As she drew closer, a new sound took over, familiar in its rhythm, and I became dizzy in its hypnotic cadence. My own dying heart seemed to beat in time with hers and the desire and the fantasy began to overtake me.

In my mind, she came to me, so much like my dark enchantress, straddling my body with her own and licking my neck over and over again until my breath came in short, heavy pants. Her hands released me and she ran her fingers through her hair and piled it high on top of her head, exposing the creamy white skin of her neck. It was my turn to taste her, and my tongue slid from the base of her throat to behind her ear, feeling each pulse under her skin. My tongue then turned to my teeth; feeling the new sharpness that rested there and I again brought my hungering mouth to her skin. I took her quickly and my new fangs slipped easily into her body. She uttered only one quiet scream as every muscle clenched to me in a mixture of surprise, fear, and desire. Settling into the moment, she relaxed slightly, lost in some erotic state that we had entered into, and I laid her back onto the floor desiring her in so many ways, and yet needing her only in one.

"No!" I screamed in a wounded roar breaking the trance I had sunk into and remembering that Scully stood within inches of me now and gravely in danger from something I could not control.

"Mulder!" she cried, "Let me help you! Tell me what to do!"

"Leave me Scully! I can't control it I don't want to hurt you. Please!" I begged to her with everything good and decent that was still in me, and she ran from the room with faith in me and with a fear that I could smell as if it were her perfume. I returned to my corner of shadows and cried a tearless cry, because no moisture would fall from my lifeless eyes. I needed her so badly, yet I feared that I would hurt her. The hunger was so great, that it seemed impossible to resist. So I covered myself with the cold blanket and waited, praying that death would find me soon.

4:40 am

"Mulder," her voice called to me from across the room, rousing me from my weakened state. I tried to answer her, to tell her to go away, but I couldn't. Neither the strength nor the desire was there for me to do so. She crossed the floor again, cautious but determined, and knelt on the floor beside me, taking me into her warm arms. I felt her salty tears hit my cheek in warm puddles and opened my eyes to see her beautiful face. "You're dying aren't you, Mulder? What you said is true, and you're dying because you need blood don't you."

I nodded and formed my words slowly, though my voice found only a whisper to convey them. "She hasn't come has she, Scully? She's not coming for me." My words were a revelation as well as a relief and she pulled me tighter into her arms.

"Hold on Mulder, you have to hold on," her tears continued and my heart broke for the pain that she was enduring again because of me. "It's almost sunrise... then you can rest. We will think of something for tomorrow night, we'll make her come."

Her words brought frozen tears to my eyes that I thought were impossible, she didn't understand. "Scully, I won't make it to sunrise," I heard myself say, "I told you it was a one time shot, I either feed or I die."

Her chest began to shake and she tried so hard to not to fall apart. "You can't leave me, Mulder, I need you," she said and she kissed her tears from my face. Suddenly, her tears stopped and she looked at me with new hope and determination. "What if I give you blood?" she asked.

"What!" I tried to scream and I pulled myself upright with every bit of strength that I could find.

"Now wait, listen to me," she cautioned, "you said that your transformation would only complete if you fed and your victim dies, well, what if you drink enough to keep you alive but not enough to kill me? It will buy you time until we find her and then it can still be reversed."

"Scully, I can't! Please, just go away, please don't make me do this!" it was my turn to beg. Logically her solution made viable sense, but could I stop once I had her?

But she was unwilling to let me decide, she instead was going to make sure that I fed as she knelt over me and nuzzled my neck with her mouth. Unlike my fantasy, I found myself aroused by more than just the desire for her blood and the beating of her heart pounded in my head. I moaned at just the feel of her so close to me, and instantly missed her warmth as she pulled back to look at me. She tilted her head to the side and flipped her hair behind her shoulder stretching her soft neck to allow me access.

"Scully, no!" I pleaded breathlessly one last time, losing myself to the hunger. The only thing that stopped me was the shimmer of gold that hung above her breast and I winced at its appearance. Realizing what was stopping me, she did something that can only be described as a great act of love, for she reached up and held her beloved cross in her hand for a moment before carelessly ripping it and its chain from around her and flung it to the far side of the room.

"Do it, Mulder," she commanded again, and this time I obeyed.

I pulled her to me with more strength than I knew I possessed and I hesitated for only a second before sinking my sharp developing fangs into her warm skin. Her hands clutched at the back of my shirt and then at my hair, but she didn't utter a sound. The warmth of her blood flowed into my mouth and down my burning throat as I experienced a feeling more erotic than anything I could have imagined. My heart beat in perfect time with Scully's as she lay in my arms holding me as she shared the warmth of her body and her soul.

"Mulder," I could hear her whisper, which only made my want for her increase.

But it was the other voice that stopped me, that made me realize what I was doing. It was Jordan's evil hiss that echoed about my room, and I released my grip of Scully to look up in search for my beautiful master. Not seeing her, I looked back at the pale and lifeless form that I held in my arms. Her blood burned through my veins and my vision became blurred from the tears that formed. My God, what had I done? Was she alive? "Oh Scully," I prayed, "please be alive."

As if in response, she drew a shaky breath and I pulled her close to me, holding my shirt to the still open wound I had created. Her body was still and her breathing was shallow, I had taken too much, I wasn't able to stop.

"Agent Mulder," I heard Skinner's voice call out followed by the closing of my front door, "it's almost sunrise and we haven't seen any sign of her," his voice grew closer until I knew that he stood at the doorway. "What should we...dear God! What the hell have you done?" His voice was pure rage and he began to charge me, when from out of nowhere a shadowy form appeared between us and with one arm expertly threw Skinner back toward the doorway.

"Leave him alone," I heard Jordan warn, "He needs to feed. He has not yet become."

"I'll be goddamned! If he kills her, it will be over my dead body," Skinner countered.

"That can be arranged," she laughed.

He threw the vial of holy water that he carried at her, but she anticipating it, moved easily out of the way. His next hope was the crucifix and he held it out in front of him inching his way toward Scully and me. The sight of it obviously disturbed her because she turned away slightly with a hiss. It didn't deter her however, and she continued to inch her way with him.

"Walter," she said as if talking to a child following him step for step, "Do you think that little cross is going to scare me?" Receiving only silence as a response, she easily kicked it from his hand causing him to fall back onto the bed and the cross to fly against the wall and break in two from the impact.

He pulled the ringed croquet stake from under his coat as she descended; her fangs gleaming in the lamplight, now looking more now like a wild animal than a woman. "Come on!" he yelled as they met in a tangled fury and rolled to the floor. Her hand caught his wrist as he struck from beneath her on the floor attempting to impale her, and he pushed her face upward from her chin with his other hand to keep her deadly mouth at bay. She easily pushed his hand away from her face and then slammed his other arm into the floor with a snap. He cried out in pain but continued his struggle, unwilling to allow her to escape. Her free hand slashed across his face, and her fingernails, which seemed more like claws, left behind four trails of blood on his cheek. My hope sank as I watched this man that I almost believed to be invincible being overpowered by this woman, by this demon, and I was helpless to do anything about it. He tried to fight her, but it was too late, she had already seduced him, locking him in her penetrating gaze. I heard her whispers and her promises, much like she had whispered to me, and I watched as her tongue snaked out to his cheek and to the blood that was flowing from the wounds she had caused. I watched his expression, powerless and in pain as she continued talking of the plans that she had for us.

Still holding Scully in my arms, I could hear the sounds of the waking birds outside and I looked up at the gray light creeping in the window and knew that sunrise was just minutes away. I had to act quickly or we would all perish at her hand, possibly for all eternity. With new hope I walked over to the boxes that still sat in Scully's lit corner of the room and retrieved the one remaining stake that had been left for Scully's safety. I held it for a moment turning it in my fingers, looking at the rings on the end that were the deep color of Scully's blood. Without a second thought I turned and walked to where they struggled on the floor. Whether her mind was so concentrated on Skinner that she didn't see me coming, or whether she thought I was coming to her aid I will never know, but her destruction came as swiftly as I could raise the stake above my head and bring it down into her dead heart.

Skinner's voice cursing her to go back to hell was the only sound I heard as I lowered that stake. She howled as the wood pierced her body, only the rings now visible from her back. Having done what needed to be done, I stumbled wearily back to Scully, still lying motionless, the dried blood staining her neck.

"Scully," I whispered, "she's dead. Hang on sweetheart, please hang on." I pulled her onto my lap and rocked her as if to comfort her, though I wasn't sure she could hear me, but I knew somehow that she did.

At that moment, The Lone Gunmen came running in having heard the commotion from the radio that Skinner carried from their various posts around the perimeter, only to stop short at the sight before them. A disbelieving Skinner stood above a slowly decaying body as it turned to ashes, burned by the bright stream of sunrise that crossed the room to the floor where it lay. More horrifying than that, I'm sure, was the sight of me holding a Scully whose neck was bruised by the puncture wounds I had inflicted, evidenced by her blood that still surrounded my mouth.

"Holy mother of God," was Frohike's response to the scene before him.

Too weak now to reply, I sank down on the floor next to her and closed my eyes. I could hear them scrambling around us as Skinner came to his senses and began barking orders and making preparations for us to be taken to Bethesda Naval Hospital where they would ask no explanations from the F.B.I. The darkness was suffocating and I felt my body drifting in and out of consciousness. "Help her please, don't let her die!" I begged, but I knew that the sounds that I emitted formed no audible words. I sank into the abyss, praying for us to be together, either in life or in death, for I knew was that I could not be without her, certainly not for eternity.

3 days later
Bethesda Naval Hospital

The sterile hospital smell greeted me as I exited the elevator and passed the nurses station with hardly a glance. I knew the whispers that were following me, having been discharged a day earlier. The F.B.I. may not have to offer explanations to the unexplainable, but it is not hard to imagine what rumors are started when two agents are admitted simultaneously. One with puncture wounds to the neck and a body almost completely drained of blood, and the other whose white blood cell count is higher than most leukemia patients with no explanation why, and then miraculously the next day's blood draw shows complete normality. Combine those puzzles with dried blood on the face of agent number two that is a perfect match for agent number one's blood type and all it takes is a dime store novel enthusiast to start whispering vampire. However, I was not a vampire, thanks to my partner, my friend, and ultimately my savior. Scully's blood has sustained me almost at the cost of her own life.

As I turned the corner, a rather stern looking Skinner greeted me outside her room, I had anticipated this moment and braced for what I was sure was going to be a right hook straight to the jaw, but the blow never came.

"Agent Mulder, I don't pretend to understand what happened the other day, nor do I have any explanation as to what I saw. However, the one thing that I do know is that I owe you my life. Thank you." His hand gripped my shoulder briefly and then he was on his way down the hall toward the elevators.

I stood outside her door leaning against the cold flowered wall as I thought again about what to say to her. She had offered her life to save me, and I had almost killed her. Once again her trust in me had almost destroyed her. The opening of the door interrupted my thoughts, and I turned to face the three unlikely vampire hunters.

"Hey Mulder," greeted Langly, "wanna go watch the fights with us? Bootleg satellite transmission."

"Yeah," Frohike added, " starts in a hour and a half if you're interested, they say its gonna be a blood bath!"

The look on my face evidently voiced every word in my head and Frohike quickly tried to rephrase his statement. "It's alright guys, you're allowed to say the word blood," I reassured them. "However, I think I could live without ever hearing the name Jordan again."

As if fate somehow taunted me, at that moment the loudspeaker blared above my head paging a Dr. Andrew Jordan to surgery, stat. I just shook my head and again fell back against the support of the wall behind me.

"She's been waiting for you," Byers stated.

I nodded and smiled a reluctantly smile. We said our goodbyes and they followed Skinner's trail down the empty hallway, after a sharp and supportive slap on the back from Frohike.

The door clicked gently as the catch released and I slowly pushed it open to reveal Scully looking small and frail in the white sheets of the bed. I approached her quietly; afraid that she was sleeping, and stood at the foot of her bed just looking at her, her beautiful auburn hair fanned on the pillow surrounding her now flushed face like a copper halo. At that moment she was the most beautiful woman I had ever seen. Though I admit that the desire that burned in me that night had still not subsided completely, it was not her appearance that made her beautiful. But her love for me so great that she would give of her own life, as I would have done for her.

"Hey you," she whispered, catching me off guard, "I was wondering where you were."

The smile on her face warmed me more than her blood had in my cold dying body. She was healthy and happy, and I loved her, though words were still not easy for me. There was so much that I wanted to say; that I needed to say as she held out her hand to me and I went to her side to take it in my own. Her touch was enough to release the emotions that I held inside, and warm salty tears streamed down my cheeks as I took her in my arms.

"Oh, Scully," I cried, "I'm so sorry I hurt you."

Her fingers ran through my hair as she held me, comforting me from the fear that had finally taken over. We sat like that for what seemed like an eternity, holding each other as if afraid to let go. My head fell to her shoulder and I felt the roughness of the bandage at her neck and was again reminded of what I had done, of what she had made me do.

"Scully," I said as I dried the tears, unashamed for she alone had seen me cry many times before, "What the hell were you thinking? I could have killed you!" I held her beautiful face in my hands as she smiled up at me.

"You were dying, Mulder. My only thought was that I had to save you."

My tears were dry now and I looked at her through changed eyes. Changed because of our experience and because of the undeniable love that it had forced us to recognize. "I would gladly die rather than harm you." I whispered, brushing the hair back from her face. "I don't know what I would have done if I had lost you."

Her hand took mine and held it to her cheek. "Mulder, I was never in danger. I trust you with my life," she said through a teary smile, "I knew that you would save me."

I smiled at her trust in me and remembered the gift that I had brought. "That's not all I saved." I grinned as I reached in my pocket for the small gold cross that hung on its new chain and held it up as it twisted and gleamed in the light. "This is becoming a regular thing, Agent Scully," I teased, "do you think you can keep this around your neck this time?"

She leaned forward slightly and held up her hair for me to clasp her necklace back where it belonged. My fingers lingered over the bulky white bandage and she pulled my hand away to kiss my knuckles gently. "Dana," I whispered, "I promise, I'll never hurt you again."

"I never said that you hurt me, Mulder," she said with an evil grin, and I wondered if it was possible that the desire I tried so hard to forget was present in her as well, but before I could say anything the door opened and the doctor came in to make his rounds.

After checking all of her vitals again and her satisfactorily answering all of his concerns, he told her that he saw no reason why she couldn't be released if she was careful. "Do you have anyone that can help you for a few days?"

"Yes, I do," she replied taking my hand again.

"Ok, then. I should have your release papers done within the hour. Take care Dr. Scully," he nodded and was gone again.

"You don't mind, do you Mulder? I could call Mom and I'm sure she would come over...after a battery of questions."

I pressed a kiss to the palm of her hand in reply. "There is nothing that I would like more than to stay with you." I said meaning longer than the doctor had recommended. Her smile told me that she understood.


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