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Scully meets the new woman in Mulder's life.
SPOILERS: Season 5 (takes place sometime after Emily but before Diana, in 1998)
DISCLAIMER: Not mine; they belong to CC, FOX, etc.
Notes: Special thanks to the lovely Mims, my beta and publicist. And belated thanks to Obfusc8er for catching a typo in part 1 before I posted it.
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As her heels clicked down the empty hall, Scully looked up from the file in her hands just long enough to see that the door to Mulder's office was already open. She expected he had embedded another round of number twos into the ceiling with his impatience, so she wasted no time breaking the news.
"Mulder, I have the--" Scully raised her head to address him, only to realize that he wasn't there. Instead, a young woman with long, brown hair was seated in front of his desk.
"Fox stepped out for a minute. He should be right back."
Scully unconsciously mouthed "Fox" and tamped down the pang of jealousy. As rationality regained control of her senses, she realized who the girl was. This was the first time Scully had gotten a good look at her up close. Suddenly the full lips and subtly prominent nose looked very familiar.
"You must be Ginny. I'm Dana Scully, Mulder's partner." She extended a hand in greeting.
Ginny rose and stepped forward to shake her hand. The girl didn't match her father's height, but she did have a couple of inches on Scully.
"Yes, he's told me all about you," said Ginny with a grin.
Scully raised her eyebrows. She wasn't sure what "all" consisted of, especially since she didn't think Mulder had yet spent much time with his newly discovered daughter. But before Scully could find a diplomatic way of asking about this, she was preempted by a voice behind her.
"Hey, Scully, I was about to call you. Did you get the results?"
She turned to see Mulder approach. Briefly she considered leveling at him the question she was about to ask Ginny, but she yielded to the anxiety in his face and more pressing matters.
From the file in her hand, Scully withdrew a transparency containing the PCR results. She tucked the folder under her arm and held the sheet up toward the lights.
Pointing out the markings, she explained, "As you can see here, the alleles in lanes 2 and 3--" But the weight of Mulder's hand on her arm brought her up short.
"Scully." His plaintive tone was echoed by the appeal in his eyes.
She slowly lowered her arm. With no further ado, she said, "The DNA's a match."
Mulder let out the breath he had been holding and nodded slightly, then looked beyond her to Ginny. Scully dropped her eyes to the transparency, suddenly feeling like she was an intruder in a private moment. No one spoke.
Scully was thinking of a reason to excuse herself when Mulder broke the silence. "Ginny and I were going to grab lunch. You want to join us?"
Scully glanced at Mulder, then at Ginny--both watching her expectantly--before shifting back to her hands. "Um, thank you, but no. I've got some things I need to catch up on here." When she dared to meet her partner's gaze, she could tell that he recognized her lie. To her relief, though, he accepted her answer.
"Well, then, I'll bring you back a salad with all the fixings--how's that?" Mulder asked with a warm smile.
That was an offer Scully couldn't refuse. She smiled in return and nodded.
Mulder turned to Ginny. "We should probably get going before the lunch crowd picks up. There's a grill just down the street. Does that sound good?"
"Yeah, that's cool." As Ginny leaned over to pick up her jacket and purse draped over the chair, Scully noted the high-heeled boots poking out beneath her long flowered skirt. In that moment, she was struck by how grown up this girl really was. Ginny was a young adult, not a child. For Scully, it had been hard enough knowing she had missed the first three years of Emily's life; she couldn't even fathom what it would feel like to have missed out on the girl's childhood entirely.
Scully pulled out of her musings to realize that Ginny was standing in front her, reaching out to shake hands again. "It was very nice to meet you, Ms. Scully."
She returned the shake. "It was nice to meet you, too. I hope we get a chance to see each other again." And she meant it. She was bursting with curiosity about what this young woman was like--and what hand nature had dealt her.
"Me, too," said Ginny.
Scully didn't miss Mulder's pleased smirk at her behind Ginny's back. For some reason, it made her feel self-conscious, which prompted her parting shot as the pair headed toward the exit: "Have a nice lunch, *Fox*."
He turned back and quirked an eyebrow at her; Scully didn't hide her mischievous grin. She watched as her partner placed a tentative hand on Ginny's elbow to usher her out the door.
Once they were out of sight, Scully felt her smile wither. She was curious, for sure, but the jury was still out on how she felt beyond that. A small part of her was disappointed at the PCR results, and that only made her feel guilty. She didn't want to analyze how watching Mulder with a new female in his life was just the tiniest glimpse of what it would be like if--when--he found Samantha.
Then there was the fact that Mulder had a living, breathing daughter he could get to know, while Emily was--
Scully turned away from the empty doorway, refusing to let her thoughts continue down that path. She dropped the folder onto Mulder's desk and then went in search of something to keep her occupied. Maybe she could surprise her partner and come up with a bona fide X-File to investigate. She knew he must have a tabloid lying around here somewhere...
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