Three FBI Agents, Three Conspiracy Members, Three Conspiracy Theorists, Three Extraneous Family Members (Two Real, One Imagined), Seven Ghosts, A Surfer, and A Baby...

by Ellie and Tiriel (

Fandom: X-Files -humor-

Rating: R, for an adult (and increasingly slashy) sense of humor

Archiving: Unless Ellie objects, sure, why not?

Notes/Disclaimers: Once again, the dynamic duo of Ellie and Tiriel set to speculating about an X-Files enigma. The topic this time: the paternity of Scully's baby. Nobody in here belongs to us, and this is parody, so the depiction of one real person in here is intended for laughs only. If you've read our previous XF effort, you might catch an extra joke.

Walter Skinner leaned back in his overstuffed leather chair and fixed the one remaining member of the X-Files department of the FBI with an unwavering gaze. This wasn't his usual, "What in the hell have you let your idiot partner bumble into this time?" glower, nor the patented, "You do realize I'm about to get it up the backside thanks to you, don't you?" glare, or even the up and coming (but quickly gaining popularity) "I don't even want to know what the hell is going on 'cause Krycek's got an itchy Palm Pilot finger" frown. While there was a definite undercurrent of displeasure, this particular expression was more puzzled than grumpy. Indeed every few moments his eyebrows would descend and seem to crumple into one another like a messy fender bender on a busy highway. He's open his mouth, pause for a second or two, and then snap it shut again. Scully wondered vaguely if she should settle in for the afternoon. Would her superior think less of her if she kicked off the hideously expensive leather pumps that were now turning her feet into the general consistency of Italian sausage? She was, quite frankly, disinclined to care at the moment.

After a lengthy silence Skinner removed his glasses and paused to rub his eyes wearily. He seemed to regather his thoughts with that action and finally blurted, "For god's sake, Scully just tell me!"

Blinking two very innocent-looking blue eyes at him she asked, "Tell you what?"

He shoved his glasses back on with the sort of violence people usually reserved for slamming doors and growled, "You know damn well what! Who..." Skinner paused for a second and looked around the room as if he expected to see the Smoking Man crouching behind one of the potted plants. " the father?"

"Well, sir," she said, "that's an interesting question. You see--" Scully paused at the sound of a loud thump from the coat closet. She frowned. She wasn't entirely sure that there was usually a coat closet in A.D. Skinner's office, but there was one now, and it had just thumped. Or rather, something inside it had. She drew her gun with silent efficiency and stood up, moving slowly toward the source of the noise.

Skinner pulled a gun from his desk drawer and did the same. He placed a hand on the knob and silently mouthed, "One, two, three." Then he opened the door in one quick movement. He coughed loudly.

Scully realized that she'd been watching Skinner move rather than looking into the closet, and turned abruptly. Like a big cat, she thought, and then turned her attention to the pair of figures emerging from the closet in a cloud of rather smelly cigarette smoke. "Would you mind putting that out? It's bad for the baby."

"Of course, Agent Scully. We wouldn't want to harm your precious cargo, now would we?" The Cigarette Smoking Man stepped out of the closet and pinched out his cigarette.

"But didn't I hear that you were dead?" Skinner said. "Oh, never mind. What are you doing in my office?"

"You're not the only one interested in the identity of the baby's father. That's what we're doing here." Alex Krycek followed the CSM out of the closet, hand in his coat pocket.

"Oh, for Pete's sake, is anybody else in that closet with you two?" Scully lowered her gun.

"Well, Agent Mulder, of course," Krycek said, then, to everyone's amazement, blushed and ducked his head. "Sorry. Bad joke. He's with the aliens of course." After a glare from the gaunt man next to him, he corrected himself again. "Actually, I have no idea where Agent Mulder might or might not be."

The CSM cleared his throat. "Agent Mulder's whereabouts are irrelevant at this point. I'm afraid you'll have to come with us, Agent Scully."

"And why is that? We're the ones with the guns." She cocked her head to one side.

"Because I still have control over A.D. Skinner's continued well-being," Krycek said with a sly smile.

"She's not going anywhere without me," Skinner said, stepping closer to her.

"Of course. Bring them both," the CSM said, and stepped back into the closet. Krycek gestured for Skinner and Scully to follow.


Marita tapped perfectly manicured fingertips against the steering wheel of what she and Alex had less than affectionately dubbed "The CancerMobile." "Her name is Rio and she dances on the sand..." she sang along with the radio, checking her makeup one more time. It wasn't that she was overly vain, though she'd always tried to look her best, of course. One didn't make it into the upper echelon of corrupt uber-conspiracies with split ends and bad teeth. Well, not unless they were a man.

She frowned. It was so typical of the misogynistic patriarchal society they lived in. But that would all be changing soon enough, one way or another. Not that she necessarily thought women would gain instant equality once they landed. Indeed it was a pretty good bet they'd all end up alien goulash. Still it might almost be worth it if she could watch old Smoky get turned gooey first. That thought put a brilliant smile on her exquisitely rouged lips.

Simon LeBon continued to croon as the former double agent/conspiracy guinea pig/chauffeur muttered, "I could've been Rio. I look devastating in a bikini and body paint." And she did, Alex had even said so on their last trip to Afghanistan. She kept trying to remember how cute Alex looked in a Speedo and Uzi but all she could picture was Duran Duran bass guitarist John Taylor in similar attire. It was such a lovely image that she sighed happily. She'd have to check the fan club hotline when she got back to her place, Duran Duran was touring and she'd be damned if she was gonna miss them again this year.

Before she could launch her favorite fantasy, the one where Simon pulled her up on stage like Courtney Cox in that Bruce Springsteen video, the back door opened and Agent Scully slid in. Skinner was right behind her, looking profoundly unhappy about the situation. Eyeing the Assistant Director speculatively, Marita couldn't help thinking that if she was the one with the Palm Pilot of Doom she'd put it to much better use than Alex had been inclined to. Of course Krycek had the raging thigh sweats for Mulder (who didn't?) so she could forgive him his oversight.

As Marita pulled away from the curb, she was still too distracted by daydreams of 80's pop bands to notice the unmarked white van that followed them. Inside the van, an argument was taking place.

"I told you, you're following too close. They'll see us." Byers straightened his tie. "We do not want to be seen."

"Then put on the hard hat and coveralls," Frohike said, "and stop whining. We aren't following close enough. The lovely Agent Scully's life may depend on this."

"Those things smell like the sewer. I'm not putting them on." Byers wrinkled his nose.

"Well, then, get in the back seat where no one will see you. You'll blow our cover." Frohike pulled at Byers' shoulder. Byers slapped Frohike's hand away.

Langly reached over from the driver's seat and put his arm between them. "I'm driving. Don't make me pull this van over. God, I sound like my father. Byers, either put on the disguise, or get in the back. Frohike, shut up. I am following at just the right distance. They won't see us."

"What kind of disguise is it? I mean, we're in a plain white van. We could wear normal clothes," Byers grumbled as he switched places with Frohike.

"And who died and made you king, Langly?" Frohike settled into the front seat.

"Who found out about this little plan of theirs? I did. That makes me the one in charge. Now shut up, the both of you."

The three paranoid conspiracy theorists were too busy bickering to notice the dark towncar that pulled into traffic behind them as they followed the car that they had less than affectionately dubbed "The CancerMobile."

Margaret Scully hated driving in the city during the work week, traffic was murderous and her Lincoln wasn't exactly easy to maneuver at the best of times. Still, this was an emergency and she'd be damned if her daughter was going anywhere without her until Dana spilled the beans about the father of the baby.

"I don't know why you're bothering with the cloak and dagger routine, Mom." Bill grumbled, his bottom lip stuck out petulantly. "We all know who the father is, it's that sorry sonuvabitch Mulder. I mean it's not like she's so much as looked at another guy in the past seven years."

"We don't know that for certain, dear, and sit up straight." Margaret replied pleasantly. Sparing a glance at the back seat she sighed, "Charlie are you just going to sit there like a lump all day? I swear it's almost impossible to get even two words out of you. Sometimes it's like you're an imaginary son."

Bill's eyes traveled to the backseat almost unconsciously. He knew there was nobody back there, but he couldn't quite help it. Thirty something years of their mom's little "eccentricity" and he still almost believed he really did have another brother. "Uh, he's asleep, mom. Are, um, are you sure we're doing the right thing here? I mean can't we get in trouble following a Federal agent all over town?"

"Of course not, dear, I'm her mother."

Her logic was, of course, impeccable so Bill leaned back in his seat and decided to make the best of the situation. He closed his eyes and imagined castrating Fox Mulder...with a spork. Yeah, a really dull spork at that.

Margaret Scully, meanwhile, was indulging in a little fantasy of her own. It involved her daughter's reluctant revelation that Fox was indeed the father of her baby. Margaret would purse her lips and let Dana know precisely how disappointed she was in her. "A baby out of wedlock, Dana Katherine Scully you should be ashamed of yourself!" Then, still filled with a mother's righteous indignation she'd send her wayward daughter off to confession to bear her soul. While the repentant girl was off doing her duty she'd have a Fox.

She could almost see his face now, his bottom lip trembling and his sad, puppy dog eyes gazing up at her from under long, almost feminine lashes. "Fox, you've been a very naughty boy...very, very naughty. And you deserve to be punished."

"You're right, ma'am, I do....I deserve to be....spanked."

Margaret allowed herself a blissful smile, and was so lost in the notion of bending Fox Mulder over her knee for a good old-fashioned thrashing that she almost hit the Honda Civic that came squealing around the intersection in front of her.

Inside the Civic, the grey-haired surfer reassured his nervous passenger. "Don't worry. Nothing happens without me. We won't be late."

The pouty-lipped man who was clinging to any available grippable surface as the driver careened madly through the streets didn't look reassured. "Sometimes I think you have a God complex. You act like you created the world. And why do we even have to be there for the whole thing? I don't think I want to be there for the whole thing. Maybe half of it. Maybe a little less. And only if I get my fair share of the syndication rights."

"This particular event is not being taped for broadcast. And watch it, or I'll send you back to the aliens."

Suddenly, the interior color scheme of the car changed, but the grey-haired man didn't seem to notice. Continuity had never been his strong suit.

Meanwhile, on a plane of existence slightly out of phase from our own, there were several others who were following the caravan with interest.

"Agent Scully's family, Agent Mulder, The Lone Gunmen, Skinner, CGB Spender, Krycek, Marita, and of course, Agent Scully herself. A towncar, a Honda, a van, and a nice, subtle limousine. Quite the little parade. Is there anyone who isn't there?" Deepthroat smiled to himself as he floated along behind. No one in the vehicles noticed his presence, of course, because he was still dead. His companions, however, were quite aware of his presence.

"I don't know, but Fox had better not be the father of that redheaded bitch's baby," Diana Fowley hissed.

"And if it's my father, I think I'm going to be sick." Jeffrey Spender commented.

"You can't be sick. You're dead." X's voice somehow sounded even deeper than it had when he was alive.

"It was a figure of speech, dear boy. Don't be such a grump. Let the kids have their fun." The Well-Manicured Man smiled at Jeffrey. "This is what we get for not watching closely enough. That's why we all died, you know, and did we learn our lessons? No. Turn your back for even a second and suddenly Agent Scully is pregnant. One of you at least should have known."

"I don't know why we even care anymore."

"Because, X, old chap, death is not always permanent, and it wouldn't do to go back and not be up to date on the latest developments."

"Shh, they're saying something." Deepthroat pointed to the limo that carried Scully, Skinner, Krycek, Marita, and the CSM.

When Marita's voice crackled over the limo's intercom the four inhabitants of its spacious interior nearly jumped out of their collective skins. "Excuse me, boss," she purred, it had taken her nearly six months to recover her uber-sexy, husky voice and she intended to use it at every opportunity, "but precisely where are we headed?"

CBG reached unconsciously for a cigarette, but let his hand drop at a glare from Scully. "I...that is...I believe you were informed regarding our final destination before we left."

"No sir, I wasn't."

Smoking Man squirmed slightly in his seat. "Yes, I distinctly remember giving you the coordinates earlier."

"No, sir, that was your order at the Wendy's drive through."

" was? Well, then we'll be going to..." He paused to consider several options, but didn't seem overly excited about any of them. "We'll go, can't go there the al- er - I mean 'our associates' are using that location. Hmm, how, no Mulder blew that one up. The Department of Defense is completely out of the question..."

"How come?" Krycek asked, a bit distracted by the white van behind them that kept creeping up on their bumper.

"It's been done to death."


Spender Sr. sighed, "Alex, this is precisely the sort of thing that keeps you from joining the upper echelon of our happy little group." He paused to take out a nicotine patch and slap it on his arm. "It's a question of style, never repeat yourself. You might want make a note of that."

Krycek slipped the Palm Pilot out of one of his inner jacket pockets and dutifully scribbled a message to himself with the stylus. 'Remember to kill Ol' Smokey again, this time kill him a lot.' When he glanced up he noticed a fine sheen of sweat had broken out on the A.D.'s bald pate. "Oh settle down, Walter, I'm not going to hurt you....yet."

The intercom piped in once more. "Still waiting for those directions, sir."

"Yes, yes of course. Let's see, where can we enjoy a bit of privacy that hasn't been destroyed, uncovered, or otherwise compromised by the Dynamic Duo." A significant look from the aging conspiricist elicited complete indifference from the diminutive agent directly across from him.

"What about your place?" Krycek continued to dangle the stylus over his Palm just to watch Skinner shrink back into his seat in terror.

Grimacing, CGB returned, "It's hardly the sort of place for such a momentous event. At any rate I was up early managing a government overthrow in the Middle East, so I didn't really tidy up." Dejected, he asked Marita, "Can't you just pick a place? I trust your judgment, my dear."

A barely contained snort echoed over the intercom. "Sure, sir. I think I see a spot that might suit our purposes."


An altogether too perky young woman of perhaps all of 17 chirped, "Welcome to Denny's, how many in your party?"

"Five." Marita supplied helpfully.

"Great! Will that be smoking or non?"

"Smoking." "Non-smoking." two voices sang out simultaneously.

This confused their hostess to absolutely no end. "But we don't have a 'Smoking-non-smoking' section!"

"Just seat us in non-smoking, dear." Marita cooed, patting her lightly on the arm.

That seemed to restore the girl's former enthusiasm. "Right! Just follow me."

The party followed, with varying degrees of enthusiasm. Marita smiled to herself. Normally she wouldn't be caught dead in a place like this, but she'd had some twisted impulse to see the cancer-ridden old bastard in a Denny's. She couldn't quite explain it. Or should that be "formerly cancer-ridden?" Who could keep track?

As Marita privately wondered whether or not CGB Spender had been dipping into conspiracy bank accounts to fund plastic surgery for himself and began to speculate on the possibilities of what that kind of cash could accomplish in the right hands, namely hers, another group was entering the restaurant.

"Three," Margaret Scully said firmly. "Non-smoking."

"Two," Bill corrected. "Charlie's waiting in the car in case they try to sneak out."

"Good idea."

"Thanks, Mother. Miss, could we be seated right over there?" Bill pointed to a booth that was next to the one occupied by Scully, Skinner, Krycek, Marita, and the CSM, but separated from it by some very sad-looking fake plants. From there, they'd be able to hear and not be seen. And he could continue coming up with new and creative methods of castrating Fox Mulder in peace.

Outside, in the white van, the Lone Gunmen were discussing the best way to approach the problem at hand.

"I say we should go in through the back." Byers said emphatically.

"No. We've got to save her. We go in through the front and we get her out. They wouldn't dare to try anything in such a public place." Frohike seemed ready to jump out of the van and run in. Privately, he was harboring fantasies of the lovely Agent Scully's gratitude. Something along the lines of "Oh, Frohike, you saved me. How can I ever repay you?" Langly's words brought him out of his reverie.

"Are you kidding? Do you have any idea what goes on in the back of a Denny's? Didn't you read the article I wrote on that last year? I mean, sure, I spent a lot of time there in college with my gaming buddies, but I had no idea then what really went on in those places. Plus, they're involved in funneling money to--"

"Fine. Let's go in the front. Quietly." Byers shot Frohike a warning look. "We'll check out the situation and then decide what to do. Now take off those 'disguises' so you at least look semi-normal."

As the Lone Gunmen were seated in another inconspicuous location within the Denny's, the Honda Civic was idling out back.

"Now what?"

"We are going to wait until it's the right moment for your entrance," said the grey-haired man with a smile.

Inside the Denny's, there were now three booths full of people interested in the paternity of Scully's child, not to mention the invisible onlookers, who didn't need to deal with the perky hostess or worry about finding a place where they were inconspicuous. The five ghostly observers suddenly found themselves joined by two more.

"So, I'm going to have a little brother or sister, Aunt Melissa?"

"That's right, sweetie, and we're here so that we can find out who the daddy is. Then we're going to go tell your grandfather. He couldn't be here because he's working on another series." Melissa Scully patted Emily on the shoulder. "And the Mulders were going to be here, too, but they're late. They're always vanishing. Now you see these five? They're dead, too. The two older ones are kind of sweet, but the three younger ones aren't. Especially the lady with the dark hair. She's a real b--well, anyway, she's not nice at all. Most importantly, don't trust any of them. Okay?"

"Okay." The two Scullys moved away from the other five ghosts. The Well-Manicured Man and Deepthroat smiled kindly at Emily. Diana Fowley shot Melissa a filthy look and muttered under her breath. Spender looked embarrassed, probably remembering his family's part in Emily's existence. X looked merely bored.

At the table that was the focus of attention of three conspiracy theorists, two living Scullys, two dead Scullys, and five dead-but-hoping-to-live-again-someday conspiracy participants, the CSM was fidgeting with a pen as if he could smoke it, and Scully was attempting to get the attention of a waitress.

"Excuse me?"

The waitress sailed obliviously by.

"Agent Scully, can we get down to business?" the Smoking Man asked impatiently. "We need to have a discussion."

"After I get some food. You dragged me here, the least you can do is feed me. I'm eating for two. Excuse me!" Yet another waitress passed them without a glance.

Krycek rolled his eyes. "Fine." He stood up and pulled out a gun. "COULD WE GET SOME SERVICE HERE, PLEASE?"

The entire restaurant fell silent for a moment. Then screams sounded as patrons and employees alike scattered, heading for the doors. After a moment of chaos, no one was left except for the Scullys, the Lone Gunmen, the party at Agent Scully's table, and, of course, the ghosts.

"Oh, that's just great, Alex. Look what you did." Marita was filing her nails.

"And now how am I going to get my food?" Scully asked.

"Marita, go back to the kitchen and see what you can find for Agent Scully," CancerMan said quietly.

"What, because I'm a woman I have to be the one to do the cooking? That is so typical--"

"Now," he said. Marita stood and stomped back toward the kitchen.

At the sight of employees fleeing out the back door, the grey-haired surfer dude turned off the Civic's engine. "Now we can go in, Agent Mulder, but stay out of sight until I tell you. We want to wait until the best moment for dramatic effect."

"Hey! You turned it off in the middle of my favorite song. That was that Bree Sharp chick!" Mulder protested. The grey-haired man merely smiled and got out of the car, heading for the back door of the Denny's.


"And look what we have here," Alex Krycek said, noticing that two booths were still occupied.

"Mom!" Dana Scully said. "Bill, you should have known better."

"I'm just waiting for Mulder to show up. Then I need a bungee cord and a tall cliff...I'm gonna hook the cord to his" Bill gestured expressively, "and push him off and then he won't be fathering any more children. He'll be singing soprano when I'm through with him."

"But, Dana, you really need to tell us who it is."


"And what are we, chopped liver? We're here to save you and you won't even say hi?" Frohike pouted as he saw his fantasies of saving the day crumbling around him.

"Everybody sit down and shut up!" All heads turned in shock to Walter Skinner, whose face was bright red. "I don't mean to shout because I realize that you're the ones with the guns, and the Palm Pilots, but someone has to take charge here. This is ridiculous!"

Both Dana and Margaret released shaky, hormone induced sighs. He was so forceful, so manly, so...loud. Even Krycek was starting to give him an appraising once over. Maybe he had overlooked certain possibilities where the assistant director was concerned, certain entertaining and with any luck, extremely fulfilling possibilities.

CGB Spender stood stiffly, a straw dangling from his lips and put in, "I concur with the Assistant Director, this really is counterproductive. We are, after all, here for the same purpose. I propose we take a seat and discuss this like a group of rational adults."

"I'm not sitting anywhere near that guy." Langly pouted, folding two pale, scrawny arms over his They Might Be Giants t-shirt.

If Spender Sr. was offended he certainly didn't show it. Of course the fact that he'd already made arrangements to ship the three Gunmen off to Yemen might have helped him maintain his composure. "Fine, just pull a chair over into the corner. After all it's not as if you have anything to contribute."

The other man pushed his glasses up and growled, "I could." Everyone gave him a dubious look. "I could too! For all you know I could be the father."

"No, Langly," Dana replied somberly, "you really couldn't."

Meanwhile in the kitchen the gray-haired man grinned and jotted down a few notes. "Boy wouldn't that blow peoples' minds? Langly, the father of Scully's baby." He continued to cackle gleefully as he scribbled.

"But I thought I was supposed to be the father." Mulder whined, beginning to think this whole 'I need a break from the XFiles' thing was a truly piss-poor idea.

"Nah, too obvious."

"But...but..." the other man's lower lip began to tremble dramatically. "What about all the 'Shippers?"

"Just because I've thrown them a bone or two in the past season doesn't mean I'm gonna totally cave and give 'em everything they want. At any rate there's more than just one 'Shipper group out there, you know. In fact a really prodigious number want you and Krycek screwing like bunnies."

"That's gross," he replied a little too quickly, clearing his throat loudly and loosening his collar.

"Personally I've always kinda liked the 'Daddy Skinner and his bitch Mulder' contingent. Actually there's this one story that takes place in one of these restaurants...."

"I have absolutely no idea what you're talking about," Mulder squeaked.

Marita didn't even notice the two men in baseball caps and trenchcoats lurking near the kitchen doors, she was too busy trying to figure out what she was going to serve the others. What food there was looked less than appetizing even if she were capable of figuring out how to cook it. Standing in the middle of the kitchen she gazed around morosely as if waiting for a meal to magically appear in front of her. When it didn't she muttered darkly, "Screw them, I'm going home."

However, the thought of ending up back in a Consortium lab playing, "Mutation of the Week" didn't sound too appealing either. With a muttered Russian expletive, she grabbed the first thing she could find and set to work.

Meanwhile Skinner, Bill Scully, and Melvin Frohike were busy shoving tables together. Langly sat as far from the others as possible and sulked while Margaret Scully fretted, "I don't think we should leave Charlie in the car. I mean he's Dana's brother, he'd want to be here."

Her daughter looked puzzled for a moment. "Who?" Bill gave her an elbow jab to the side, which seemed to jog her memory. "Oh...oh yeah, Charlie. Don't worry, Mom, I'll fill him in later."

"Well, all right, dear."

Pulling up chairs, Krycek thoughtfully removed the condiments and napkin holders. Everyone took a seat as Marita slinked out of the back carrying a large serving tray. She sat it down near her employer and started pouring everyone drinks. When no one seemed to be interested in helping themselves she frowned. "I thought you said you were hungry."

"Peanut butter sandwiches?"

Marita slammed a glass of ice water down in front of Scully and replied, "Hey if you think you can do better, you can just march right back there and do it yourself. I'm a freaking double agent, not Chef Boyardee."

Krycek shrugged and grabbed one of the neat sandwich squares. After all he'd spent the past few months eating Turkish prison food, surely it couldn't be any worse than that. After a bite he reconsidered that assumption. He really wished he hadn't moved those napkins, they'd have come in handy.

"Are you going to eat that?" Scully had already polished off her sandwich and was licking her fingers. Krycek pushed the remains of his sandwich over to her. After all, she was eating for two. The nagging question about why Marita seemed so...well-acquainted...with the pizza delivery boy now answered, he allowed himself to drift into fantasy. Oh, the things he could make Skinner do with the threat of the Palm Pilot hanging over his head. With luck, he wouldn't even need to threaten. Maybe Skinner would be the type who liked games. "Horny Fugitive," for example...

Spender Sr. stood and cleared his throat. "Now, Agent Scully, would you be so kind as to answer the Assistant Director's question? Who is the father of your baby?"

"Now," hissed the grey-haired man, pushing Mulder through the kitchen doors. He then moved into the main room to lurk behind a large, fake, potted palm.

"Sorry I'm late. Did I miss anything important?" Mulder strolled casually into the room, looking impeccably groomed for a man who'd just returned from who-knows-where.

He was met by a veritable sea of gaping mouths.

"What, not even a hello? Didn't anybody miss me?"

"No," Bill Scully said, just as Krycek said "Yes."

Mulder flashed a brilliant smile.

"Fox Mulder, where the heck have you been? You've been a very bad boy, leaving Dana all alone in her delicate condition." Margaret Scully frowned at him.

"Delicate condition? What's going on here, Scully?" Mulder pulled a chair over to the end of the table.

"Well, Mulder, I'm pregnant."

His eyebrows shot up and he yelped, "Wha-? But, but you distinctly said you weren't able to have a baby. I mean it was an established fact." He paused to do a little mental calculation. "So, wait, I've been wallowing in guilt over the fact that I was, indirectly of course, the one responsible for taking away any chance that you could settle down and have 2.5 kids...for four...friggin'...years!" Running a hand through his far too shortly cropped locks he sighed like a martyred saint.

"Well it's not as if I knew anything about it either. I mean my doctors told me, quite clearly I might add, that I was barren. I had all the tests in the book, I've still got the results at home. There's just no way it could have happened, but...well, it did."

Scully was looking a bit sheepish, while Mulder was fighting down a homicidal urge. "Sure. Fine. Whatever." Suddenly it occurred to him who his anger should truly be aimed at. "Hold it." he muttered and stormed back into the kitchen. He returned with an older man in a rumpled trenchcoat, currently looking a tad bit nervous as Mulder waved his Glock threateningly. "Right, you, let's have some kind of an explanation here."

"Why are you asking me? I'm just an innocent bystander."

Mulder waved the gun a bit more forcefully and added his best imitation of Skinner's glower to boot. "Cut the crap, Carter, now spill."

CGB slapped another nicotine patch on the back of his left hand and fiddled uneasily with a breadstick. "By all means, Mr. Carter, we would all be fascinated to hear the explanation for this particular, ah, shall we say, highly unexpected conception."

The other man yanked himself free of Mulder's grasp and removed his coat to reveal a wildly colored Hawaiian shirt and shorts. "Look, I'd like to tell you, I really would but I can't."

"Why not?" everyone chorused.

"Well for one thing there are still several weeks before the series starts up again. And that's only if production runs smoothly and or I don't decide to delay it just to build suspense and drive the fans absolutely stark, staring mad with curiosity." He smirked before adding, "Well, crazier anyway, heh. What I would've given to be a fly on the wall in several million households the night the finale ran." Shaking his head with delight the man grinned from ear to ear. "But don't worry by...oh, November at the latest everything will be revealed...sort of."

"Sort of?" Scully shot to her feet, a 5'2" tower of righteous indignation. "So, I'm supposed to what, just twiddle my thumbs and gestate for the next three months until you decide to let us know what's going on? If you let us know what's going on!"

"Calm down, dear." her mother soothed. "It's not good for the baby."

"Wait a second," Marita glanced up from the napkin origami swan she'd been making. "So Agent Scully doesn't even know who the baby's father is?"

Dana sighed and shook her head a bit sadly. Her mother and brother were stunned, the Gunmen astonished, and Krycek and Spender Sr. apparently unsurprised, or at least attempting to appear that way.

"So this whole exercise was completely futile." The sexy double agent stood and folded her arms with deceptive calm. "I just spent time in a Denny's kitchen...for nothing. I just made peanut butter sandwiches...for nothing. That's just great."

Krycek continued to play Pokemon Stadium on his Palm while muttering, "Oh calm down, Marita."

"Easy for you to say, you're not the one with institutional brand peanut butter under your fingernails. And I just had a manicure!" she wailed.

"That's enough!" All heads turned to Scully, who had stood up on her chair to gain everyone's attention. "I've been pushed around and followed around enough for one day."

"You tell 'em, sis," Melissa Scully said encouragingly.

"First of all, we are going to clear some of you out of this room. By the way, why the hell aren't the police here? Krycek chased everyone else out at gunpoint."

"Well, they've probably been assured by certain respectable parties that all is under control. Not that I would know for certain, of course," CGB Spender said.

"Fine. Whatever. First of all, would the ghosts please go? I love you to bits, Melissa, and you, too, Emily, but this room is way too crowded. Tell Dad I love him. And as for the rest of you," she pointed at X, Deepthroat, Spender, Fowley, and the Well-Manicured Man, "you're not even here for a good reason. So go. Especially you." Her voice held particular venom when she looked at Diana Fowley.

"Y-you can see us?" The younger Spender looked puzzled.

"Oh, for Pete's sake, of course I can. It's part of the whole Saint Scully routine. Blame it on him." She pointed at the man, again wearing his trenchcoat, who was attempting to slink back behind a potted plant. "Oh, no. You stay."

The ghosts meekly vanished, one by one, yielding to the authority projected by the redheaded presence before them. Melissa and Emily waved and smiled, as did Deepthroat and the Well-Manicured Man. The others exited scowling.

"Ghosts? Excuse me, Dana, but have you gone mad?"

"No, Mother, I haven't, and you're one to talk. I have one brother. One, one, one. There is no Charlie. And you and Bill aren't relevant to this discussion, either. So go."


"You heard me, Mother. Out."

"Come on, Mom. We can find out later." Bill "accidentally" bumped Mulder's chair as he passed. "I've got plans for you," he hissed into Mulder's ear. He led his mother out of the Denny's.

"Marita, why don't you go do something about those nails you're so worried about. You're certainly no use here."

Marita flounced out of the Denny's.

"And as for you three," Scully turned to the Lone Gunmen, "I guarantee that none of you is the father of my baby. And no, Frohike, I don't need you to make an 'honest woman' of me, so don't even offer. I appreciate the effort of you three coming to 'save' me, but I'm well in control of the situation. So go."

The three conspiracy theorists filed quietly out. Scully turned to survey the remaining members of the party. Mulder, Skinner, Krycek, Spender, and of course Carter.

"Ok now we're going to get to the bottom of this, with or without Mr. Carter's help." Scully paused just long enough in her tirade to blow a wisp of auburn hair from her eyes. "As I see it you four are the only viable candidates for the position of father of my baby."

"But Scully...!" Mulder was positively aghast.

She turned to him and laying a comforting hand on his shoulder murmured, "Look, Mulder, believe me you're right at the top of my list."

"Top of your list?! We've spent the past seven years together! We've... we've exchanged comforting hugs and meaningful looks..."

"Yeah, but that's it, and this may come as a bit of a shock to you, Mulder, but a little more than that is required to make a baby."

"But what about 'The Kiss'?"

"Which one? The one we almost had in your hallway a few years back or the rather chaste and unexciting one we exchanged on New Years after we were both attacked by zombies?"

"Chaste? I...well...ok, maybe that wasn't some of my best work but you weren't exactly over enthusiastic about it either."

She considered that statement for a moment. "You know, you're right, I wasn't. That strikes me as odd, I mean the one I laid on A.D. Skinner was a lot more..."

"Wait, what?" Krycek asked, stunned.

"You know, in the elevator."

Spender and Krycek exchanged a confused look, which they both immediately tried to cover. "Oh yeah, that one. Sure we knew all about that one."

Spender added, "Yes indeed, it was very hot."

"'Hot'?" Mulder yelped. "Skinner gets lucky in the elevator and I get the sisterly treatment? I broke into the freakin' DOD for you...I-I-I went to Antarctica and pulled you off of a friggin' alien space craft! And now you're telling me you played tonsil hockey with Skinner?"

Scully blushed furiously. "It was hardly that, I mean I was just really grateful."

"Grateful? For what?"

Giving Spender and Krycek a significant look she muttered, "We can discuss that later."

"So you're grateful to Skinner for doing something for you, once, and lay a wet one on him. I, on the other hand, who has saved your life on more occasions than bears thinking about, get nothing but a 'Thanks, Mulder' and the occasional platonic gesture?"

"Did I mention that I was really grateful at the time?" Noticing that this wasn't really having the desired effect she sighed, "Look, just because we haven't actually done anything significant onscreen doesn't mean it hasn't happened. I mean just read a little fanfic and you'll find us all over each other. Heck, in some of them we're already married with kids."

"But it's not canon! I want some onscreen nookie, I want mood lighting and a music soundtrack!" He turned on Carter. "Got that?"

"Sure, sure. I'll keep it in mind for the next movie."

Somehow Mulder didn't find that reassurance all that comforting. "Fine. But that still doesn't answer the question, who's the father? Unless...just what else have you 'shared' with A.D. Skinner?"

"Wait a second, don't drag me into this." the older man cried, scooting his chair back a bit in case he needed to make a quick getaway. "Not that I wouldn't be flattered," he amended for Scully, "but aside from that one kiss I've gotten exactly zip. I mean aside from that dead prostitute a few years back I've been as chaste as a monk."

"Really? That's hard to believe." Krycek smiled at Skinner. "What a waste."

"Which brings me to you, Krycek." Scully looked over at him. "Everybody but Marita knows that you're queerer than a three-dollar bill, but I wouldn't put this sort of twisted joke past you. So fess up, and I'll tell you what Skinner said about you once. Do you know anything about this?" She pointed at her stomach.

"No. I swear on my lost arm. I swear on my gun." Krycek looked at her seriously.

"Agent Scully..." Skinner's tone was warning, and his face was reddening, all the way up to the top of his bald head.

Scully smiled at him and leaned over to whisper in Krycek's ear.

"Really? He really said that?" Krycek smiled the smile of a man who's just unwrapped exactly what he wanted for his birthday.

Scully waggled her eyebrows and nodded.

Krycek cleared his throat. "Well, then. I think we'll be going. A.D. Skinner, you're coming with me."

Skinner opened his mouth to protest, then shut it again. "Fine." He followed Krycek toward the kitchen.

Scully turned to Spender, Mulder, and Carter. "Now. CancerMan, I don't care whether or not you're really Mulder's father or whether you were just screwing with his head. You may well have been responsible for some twisted experiment that resulted in this, and for all I know, I'm carrying an alien hybrid fetus. It's just warped enough, I wouldn't put it past you or him," she pointed at Carter, "but hear me now. One child as a result of your meddling and experiments is enough. Neither the fans nor I will stand for it again. No more fucking with my life. I've had enough from you. You. Are. Not. The. Father. Of. This. Child. It is not alien. Do you understand me?"

"Y-yes." Spender's eyes were wide. "May I be excused now?" The straw he'd been "smoking" dropped from his hand and rolled across the table.

"Be my guest," Scully said, "but remember. If it turns out that you did have anything to do with this, I'll kill you. And I won't settle for a gunshot or a trip down the stairs. I'm a medical doctor. Your head will be removed from your body and put in the X-Files office as a trophy. Mounted and stuffed. And if you have any usable organs left, I'll donate them. You will be permanently and irrevocably dead. Do you hear me?"

"Yes, ma'am." Spender hurried toward the door. "Clear as crystal."

"Oh, GOD!" A shout came from the vicinity of the kitchen.

"What was that?" Mulder said. "It sounded like Skinner."

"Never mind, Mulder. We're almost done here." Scully looked at Mulder and Carter. "Now, Mulder, we've established that although you would be my first choice, we haven't done the necessary kind of exchanging of bodily fluids, so you are not the father. That leaves one option."

"And what's that?"

"OH, GOD!" Another shout from the kitchen.

"Exactly." Scully suppressed a smile. "Angels, miracles, what better to come next than a miracle birth? Not that I ever wanted any of that stuff, but one can't argue with one's Creator." She looked at Carter. "That's right. Everyone knows you've got a God complex, and it's your idea to put me through this in the first place, therefore the baby is yours. Figuratively, at least. Now, regardless of that, I'm choosing Mulder as its father. If Xena can pick the father of her child, so can I. Besides, the image of him changing little Fox's diaper while wearing Armani, it just makes me laugh."

"Oh, no, Scully, you are not naming it that. No way." Mulder shook his head vigorously. As Scully was enjoying Mulder's reaction, Carter slipped back into the shadows and vanished.

"We'll discuss it later, Mulder. First things first. I'm going to go over to those doors and take a peek. I have got to see what's cooking in that kitchen."

The End.