Title: SPOOX
Author: The Tana-Tink Scribes
Rating: PG
Classification: X
Spoilers: None
Keywords: None
Summary: Mulder and Scully are called in to investigate a mysterious murder where the victim's insides where sucked out by what Mulder believes to be an ancient Celtic folk tale. But the agents must hurry in the investigation before this entity wipes out the whole town of Krensdale, Ohio.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS: We would like to thank Chris Carter for being The Man Who Brought Forth Light From The Darkness Of Must See TV. We'd also like to thank YOU for reading our story, and the numerous other Homo sapiens who have helped us to have a dream-a dream that would one day become a reality.

Disclaimer: The characters in this story do not all belong to us. Mulder and Scully are the property of Chris Carter(THE MAN WHO BROUGHT FORTH LIGHT FROM THE DARKNESS OF MUST SEE TV), and Ten Thirteen Productions. We are not saying that we own them.so don't get excited!! Further more, any attempts at lawsuits would be futile and ungrateful. We have no money!!!!!!!!!!!!! Note: Michael Garrettr belongs to the Tana-Tink Scribes (Amanda and Sara) and shall not be duplicated in to any fan fiction except that of the Tana-Tink Scribes.

Questions? Comments? E-mail Sara at Error! Bookmark not defined., or Amanda at Error! Bookmark not defined.. We are eager to hear from you-This is the first fan-fic that we have ever written.

The rain beat down on the old car as it sped along the deserted highway. Miranda Thompson peered out the window. The sun was just rising in the east, a little pink light on the edge of the horizon. Soon she would be out of there, out of the place she had come to think of as hell on Earth. Unless... she had considered the thought that it was too late. Maybe she had already been targeted as the next victim. Maybe she would be the next one to have the life sucked out of her and leave only the empty shell of skin behind. Maybe... She shook off the thought. Getting out was all that was important now. Once she left it could no longer hurt her. She knew it's range, knew it's boundaries. It couldn't get too far out of Krensdale. Krensdale, her birthplace. Krensdale was all she had known for the last twenty years, and now she was fleeing it as fast as the damn car could go. <Ten more miles,> she thought to herself, <Ten more miles and I'll be safe.> Safe. It was the thought she was determined to have. A white mist filled the car. A cold, chilling mist that made her stiffen. "No, please no," she whispered, but it was too late. The mist filled her mouth and ears, flooding through her body like the rain outside was flooding the small creeks and ponds along side the road. There was a ripping, tearing sound. The body that had been Miranda Thompson slumped back in the seat, then crumpled into a puddle on the upholstery. Before the car ran off the road, a sign flashed across the window.

The white mist seemed to chuckle as it left the car. "Safe" it seethed, and whirled back into town.

Dana Scully bent down to examine the pile of flesh that was resting on the table. "What do you make of it Ms. Scully?" The sheriff of Krensdale asked anxiously. "I ain't never seen anything like that before". Scully sighed with annoyance. "From what I can tell it's a human skin.

The innards have been removed perfectly, there's no trace of chemicals, it hasn't been treated with any thing. Mr. Talles, I would say that this is the work of a very obsessive serial killer. That's really my partner's field though."

"Where is your partner, Ms. Scully?" "He's out talking to the police to see what they've found." As she was saying this, a tall man in a dark coat walked in. Scully turned and saw her partner. "Mulder, this is sheriff Talles, he's the one who found her car."
Mulder looked hard at the man. "Do you know who this could have been?" "It might have been Miranda Thompson, sir," the sheriff told Mulder. "Thank you sheriff. Come on Scully, let's go." As they got into the car, Scully looked at Mulder." What do you think about this Mulder, I've never seen a human skin that's been cleaned that well, there are no marks on it, no traces of chemicals. It's like the insides were sucked out by some..."
"That might be what happened, Scully," Mulder interrupted. "What? You can't be serious. What could do something like that?" Scully
braced herself for an answer she knew she wasn't going to like.
Mulder took a deep breath to prepare for his explanation. "Scully, what if you had to quit your job for fear of an evil that lurked inside the very walls in which you work, inside the bodies of those you trust?"

"What does this have to do with Miranda Thompson, Mulder?" Scully asked, confused once again at her partner's thoughts.
"Did you happen to take a look at this place, Scully? What significant life did you notice?" Mulder asked.

"Might you be referring to the deer that stopped in front of our car for five minutes? The one you chased off into the woods?" Scully replied, feeling perturbed.
"Let's look at the facts, Scully."
"And since when has Fox Mulder relied on the facts as an answer? "Not those kind of facts, Scully. Not the facts that say two plus two equals four. I mean the real facts. Facts that are unanswered questions, like the fact that tells me that I haven't seen a single human being in this town except the ones that were crowded around the crime scene."

"AND the woman that we saw standing by that shack on the side of the road about an hour ago," Scully added.

"That's right," Mulder smiled as he said this because he knew that Scully knew what he was thinking. He was right.

"Let's go," Scully said, rolling her eyes as the car sped off deep into the city of Krensdale, Ohio.

As they drove towards the location in which they had seen the strange looking woman, Mulder further explained his theory. "Scully, what would you do if there was something that you knew of that was so evil that it could tear your insides out? How would you escape?"

"Well, the easiest thing would be to change my identity and leave," Scully replied. She was always looking for the easiest way out. "But this still doesn't explain what could have cleaned Miranda Thompson's body out like this."
"Well," said Mulder, "I can't explain that, but I think that you have just described what this woman was doing."
"Trying to leave Krensdale?" Scully asked.
"Back in DC, I had a little trouble pulling up Miranda's file."
"How's that?" Scully asked again.
"Because Miranda Thompson has only been Miranda Thompson for the past two years," Mulder replied. "For the first eighteen years of her life, Jill Wentworth has been living in Krensdale, Ohio, and I think she changed her name for a reason."
"Which is..."
"I think she knew that something like this was going to happen, but for some reason it took her eighteen years to change her name, and then another two years to leave."

"Mulder, that's just-"
"Crazy," Mulder interrupted. "Thank you, Scully." The car pulled into the dirt road that led to the old shack. It stopped right in front of the woman that they had been looking for. The two agents exited the car and approached the woman.
"We're with the FBI. I'm agent Scully, and this is agent Mulder. Ma'am, we'd like to ask you a few questions," Scully said, sounding professional.
"Sure," the woman replied, "But I didn't do anything wrong."
"No one's done anything wrong," Mulder told her. "We just want to know if you are familiar with this person," he said as he pulled out the picture of Miranda.
The woman took a long look at the picture. "No," she finally answered. "I've never seen her before."
Mulder sighed, upset that this wasn't getting them anywhere. "Her name was Miranda Thompson. She went missing a few days ago. You've never seen her?"
"No," the woman replied. "Look, I told you once I hadn't seen her. Why do you want to know?" Her voice was getting angry. "That's FBI business," Mulder said. "But we may need to come back and ask you some questions later," he said as he and Scully got into the car. "What did you say your name was, ma'am?" Mulder asked.

 "Jill," she replied. "Jill Wentworth."
The two agents stood frozen in disbelief. Jill Wentworth looked curiously back at the two agents. They seemed surprised by something. "That will be all, thank you" the man said. He and the red-haired woman got back in their car and drove off.

"Mulder I know what you're going to say", Scully began, "but that can't possibly be the same woman".

"Scully, have you ever heard of a Tivveren?" he asked her, ignoring her comment.
"It's an ancient Celtic folk tale. When someone died, their soul would be released through there mouth and nose. If they went to heaven the soul would leave Earth. But if the person had been evil in life, their soul would become a Tivveren, an evil entity that stayed to haunt the area they had died in."

"Mulder... ? How do you link that to this? This killing could have been any number of things, and saying the person who killed Miranda Thompson was a ghost is just..."
"...Ridiculous? There's more. When Tivverens left their original body, they would have to find a host. To maintain stable life support, they needed solid bodies. So, they would enter someone else. But Tivverens feed off life, and the host would begin to die. Then the Tivveren would leave the body briefly to find another life source, suck out the life, and return to the main host. Maybe the Tivveren had left its host to find another life source, to find Miranda Thompson."

Scully turned to Mulder, confused, "Then who's the host?"

Mulder shrugged. "I don't know. But, I have a feeling that Jill Wentworth knows something about it."
Scully shook her head. Something still made no sense. "Then how do you explain Miranda Thompson and Jill Wentworth being the same person?"

Mulder squinted at the road. It was getting foggy and hard to see. "They might not be. There was something interesting about the file. The picture didn't match the face in the other pictures we saw of her."

As they pulled into the small motel, Scully got out of the car. "Explain this to me again tomorrow. I'm too tired for it right now. Oh, but Mulder, perhaps you could clear up one more little detail. Why did this entity leave the human skin behind? It's evidence for people like you to find, and decode."

He grinned, "No nutritional value, Scully."
As they checked in, and got their room keys, Scully's nose began to bleed again. She sighed and trudged up to her room.

The moon shone brightly as Jill Wentworth took a glance at her watch. It read 11:21. "Four more minutes," she whispered. As she waited for the time to pass, she thought about the events that had happened the night before, and about Miranda. She thought about how she would love to put an end to all of this madness. The minutes seemed like hours, and the seconds seemed like minutes. She felt like a prisoner on death row. The windows then started to shake. Jill jumped back in fright as one of them broke, allowing a cool mist to enter. "You may be able to suck the life out of me, but you'll never defeat me!" She screamed. A lump of skin plunged to the floor, and the mist left the room making it dry again.

"Hello?" Dana Scully said, answering the phone call that had awakened her.

"Scully, it's me. I want you to come take a look at something."
Scully turned to glance at the clock. "Mulder," she said, letting him know that this bothered her, "It's five o'clock in the
morning. What could have possibly hap-"

"Jill Wentworth is dead, Scully," he explained.
"What?" she asked, surprised. "How?"
"Looks like our Tivveren is out to find a new host," he replied. "Look, just get over here as fast as you can. I'm at the old shack. I'll explain later. We need some medical advice."
"We?" Scully asked confused. "Hello?" all she could hear was the dial tone.

Scully arrived shortly after receiving the call. She looked all over for Mulder, soon finding him talking to who appeared to be a witness. The man was tall and thin with light brown hair-almost blonde, wearing a navy blue coat.

"Scully," Mulder said, walking towards her. "This is Detective Mike Garrett. He will be helping us throughout the case."
"Pleased to meet you, Agent Scully," he said, putting a hand out for a hand shake.

"Tell me, Mr. Garrett," Scully began, "Are you here to relate these deaths to some kind of paranormal activity?"
"Hardly," he replied. "I think it's the work of some kind of very obsessive serial killer."
"Oh, really," Scully said smiling. "Those were my exact thoughts."
"But that doesn't mean that I don't believe in extra-terrestrials or anything like that. There are definitely other life forms out there. But anyway, let's have a look at the late Ms. Wentworth," he said, laughing at his sick little joke.

 As Detective Garrett led them to the scene, Mulder turned to Scully, smiling, "See, Scully, we're not ALL crazy."
"Guess not," she said. She turned to look at the pile of skin left of Jill Wentworth. "This is the same thing I've seen with Miranda
Thompson. Mulder," she began to ask, "Do you still think that Wentworth and Thompson are related somehow, not necessarily by birth?" "There's only one way to find out," Mulder replied. "Detective Garrett," he said, getting the detective's attention. "Can you lead us to the Krensdale History Archive?"
"No problem," Garrett answered.
"I want to come back later for an autopsy on this woman," Scully added. "I want to take a closer look at this whole thing."
"Well, you can just stay here, Scully, if you want," Mulder told her.

"No, I'm pretty interested in this whole identity thing, too," she replied.
Detective Garrett led them both to his car, and they sped away for the archive.

Scully turned through the pages of the archives. They flipped through folders, accessed computers, and went through masses of paperwork. There were no real records on Jill Wentworth or Miranda Thompson. "Were they born here?" Scully asked. Her vision was beginning to make the printed pages swim.
"I don't think so," said Garrett. "It's a relatively small town. Seems to me Miranda just showed up one day. But Jill's always lived in that shack. She always kept to herself, never came to town or anything."
Scully turned to Mulder, "Mulder, I'm going to examine the body, if you..."
At this point Garrett interrupted, "The body is still in the shack, I doubt they moved it, procedure you know."

Scully finished her sentence, annoyed at the young detective, " ...find anything just call". She turned and left the room.

"Wow ," Garrett said. "What a babe!"
"I should introduce you to a friend of mine," Mulder said absently. "Are you into cheese steaks and beer?"

Scully at last took a good look at the place where the body was laid out, if one could call it a body. Like the others, it was just a human skin. She shivered. It was strange, never, in all her years as an FBI agent, had she seen something like this. Then something caught her eye, something on the floor. She bent down to examine it. There was a shiny metal stick protruding from the floorboards. It appeared to be a lever. <Should I pull it?> She thought. <What would happen? Nothing harmful,> a voice inside her mind said. <PULL it, pull it and see what happens.> Hesitatingly, she reached out and grabbed the shiny metal.

Odd, it seemed twice as bright as any thing in the room. She tugged it lightly, it didn't budge. Scully pulled as hard as she could and the floor beneath her gave way. It was a trap door.

Dark. Hot. Crowded. Before regaining full consciousness, Scully realized she was in a great deal of pain. She tried to stand, but a ferocious stab of pain ran up and down her leg. <Broken,> she realized. <My foot is broken.> "Well, well, well... what have we here," a dry ,crackly voice from the shadows was speaking to her. "Looks as if the master's decided to go shopping today. So, did you pull the lever yourself, or did you need persuasion?"

Scully was confused. Her foot hurt and she had a nasty gash on her forehead. "What do you mean, shopping?"

"Oh this is IT's private little diner, it is. Where do you think the population of Krensdale is, aye? Out on vacation? No missy, there all down here, what's left of 'em." the voice said.

Scully turned to see about twenty people in cells. "It'll get you next," one of the prisoners shouted at Scully.

 "So, you're the host," Scully said, turning in another direction to see a tall, dark figure.
"That's right," the man said with a laugh. "And these are my victims." He pointed at the people in the cells. "I heard you had a
little trouble pulling up some files, Dana."

"How did you know my name?" Scully asked, limping towards the man.
"Mike told me."

Scully tried to see his face, but it was hidden in the shadows. "You mean detective Garrett?"

"Of course. He's been working with me all along. He informed me of your arrival. He knew you'd pull the lever. In fact, he and your little friend should be arriving soon."
Sure enough, Garrett barged in the room seconds after the dark figure had spoken. He was pulling a chain. Scully followed it to the end to find Mulder, beaten up badly by "detective" Garrett.

"Shove 'em in a cell," the man ordered. Garrett unleashed Mulder and put them both in the cell.
"You okay, Mulder?" Scully asked.

"Yeah, I'll manage, you?"

"I think I broke my foot, other than that, I'm okay," she replied.
"We'll get you to a hospital as soon as we get this maniac," Mulder said, sounding pessimistic.

"And I used to like you guys," Garrett said childishly. "Too bad you have to get the life sucked out of you." He turned to the host. "Let's get rid of loser-boy first," he then turned back to Mulder, "You know, you've really been getting on my nerves, man," Garrett said with a snicker. He began to escort Mulder to the "misting room."
"Wait!" Scully interrupted. "Let me go before him," she said.
"No, Scully," Mulder told her.

"No, I'll be okay. I have an idea."
Garrett turned to the dark figure. "Go ahead," the figure said. Mulder was left behind as Scully, the Tivveren, and Garrett walked, and in Scully's case, limped into the separate room.

Scully's mind raced. <If this doesn't work,> she thought, <I'm dead. No more Scully, no more Dana, No more ME!>

Garrett interrupted her thoughts. "You know I always liked you," he said. "It'll be a shame to watch that pretty face drain away," he said this almost sincerely, but Scully was done with sincerity and all that went with it. She eyed him warily and kept limping. Her foot hurt, God how it hurt. With each step, it felt like a red hot blade was slicing through muscle and tender nerves. "Not much longer," Garrett said.

They came to a door in the cellar . Inside was a chair and two pieces of leather that appeared to be ordinary men's belts. "TIE HER" the black figure boomed. Garrett scurried to follow the order. He forced her into the chair and strapped the belts across her, buckling them across the back of the chair. He looked into her eyes. She was afraid he was going to kiss her. <If he does, I'll spit at him right in the face,> she decided.

Just as it looked like he was going to do it, the host spoke again,"LEAVE, MICHAEL!" Scully winced at the loud crack of the voice against the stillness of the air. Garrett looked sullen as he left the room.

"Now my dear special agent Dana Sully," it began.

"Scully," she said, "My name is Dana SCully."

"It doesn't matter," the host continued. "Soon you will be nothing but a puff of air and a wrinkled human skin."

"Then do it," she replied, "Go ahead and do it. You can take my life, but you'll never beat me, I've already won."

"You amuse me," it said,"But there's no hurry. We can't start until 11:25, and it's just 11:20. You have five minuets yet. Would you like to talk to your partner?"
IT's tone was so wheedling, so persuasive, that she almost did want to talk to Mulder, but then she remembered the lever. This was the way she pulled the lever. The lever had led to a broken foot and numerous other bad experiences. <No,> she decided, <No, it will only get him hurt.> While she was thinking, the minutes passed by. The voice spoke; "Well you have thirty seconds, any last words?"

"Yes," calmly and coolly, she spoke only once more, "Go to hell!"

"Too late," the voice muttered, then began to laugh diabolically.
Then she felt it, felt the cold chill fill her mouth and nostrils. She felt what Miranda Thompson and Jill Wentworth must have felt. The frigid air rushing into her head and into her body. There were two screams. One belonged to the entity that had filled her head with it's disgusting presence. It screamed as the cancer ate it's way through the Tivveren. A white liquid ran out of her mouth, then she screamed.

She let out a long, low cry, and slumped back in the chair, unconscious.

When she awoke, it was in Sibley Hospital, back in DC. Mulder was asleep in the chair next to her bed. He had an ice pack in his hand. He must have been holding it up to the black eye that Garrett had given him. Scully sat up and realized there was a cast on her foot. <Good,> she thought.

Mulder woke up then, and told her what she had missed. "We found you in the room, strapped to the chair," he explained.

"I remember that part," she said, he was being infuriating.

Mulder was glad to see she was being impatient with him, it meant she was getting better. "You have a little damage to the cartilage in your nose," he said, "But not too much. I also found out that we had trouble pulling up those files in Krensdale because Garrett replaced them with fake ones. That explains why Miranda Thompson's file said that she was previously Jill Wentworth. Basically, everything the jerk told you was a lie," he grinned, "Well, almost everything."

Scully rolled her eyes. "Unfortunately," she said.
Oh Scully? There's something else, your cancer has decreased, by about 50%. " He watched her face turn from amazement to pure joy. He grinned at her. "How did you know?" he asked her, "How did you know the cancer would kill it?"

"Call it..." she paused, "Call it a leap of faith."

Deep in Krensdale, Ohio, a celebration was taking place. It was in honor of the Tivveren being defeated, and leaving Ohio for good. Happiness was in the air...and so was a cloud of white mist, hovering over the party guests...

c 1997 by Sara Parelhoff and Amanda Butler (The Tana-Tink Scribes). This story is not meant to be reproduced or sold for profit. If any harm should come to it, please flee the country, or face the wrath of the monster we keep in the basement for just such purposes. Thank you, and have a nice day!

Again, please tell us what you think. E-mail Sara at Error! Bookmark not defined., or Amanda at Error! Bookmark not defined.. We would love to hear your comments-even if they're bad ones!!

"It's in the air we breathe, the water we drink. It's all around us, waiting. It's waiting, watching. Because tommorow, you might just be the next one it gets."

Bye for now, and make sure to catch our new story, Mind-Melter, that should be coming out some time in December 1997.

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