New! Home is Where the Heart is
Date: Wed, 13 May 1998

Category: Story, Angst, Mulder/Scully & Maggie/Walter UST/ at the end?

Rating: PG13 for language and Images of Child Abuse/Neglect

Spoilers: Paper Clip (mild) Demons (mild) Season Four (mild)
Season Five (not so mild)

Summary: Mulder returns home, only to realize home is where the heart is.

Archive: Yes

Disclaimer: Mulder, Scully, Maggie, Walter, and Ma and Pa Mulder belong to
10/13 productions and Chris Carter. I'm just borrowing them. I won't keep
them. At the end of the story you can have `em back, I swear, (unless you
*want* to give `em to me.) All other characters belong to me, and if Mr.
Carter wants to borrow them, all he needs to do is ask. <grin>

Introduction: I couldn't go so long without a little something that included
Walter and Maggie… forgive me! Happy Belated Mother's Day, folks.

Flames will be noted, but constructive feedback will be appreciated and

Thank you to a wonderful friend (and mother of the year in my book!) Vickie
Moseley for checking it out and over when I had the doubts.

Home Is Where the Heart Is
by Susan Proto (

Part 1/1

It was late, but he didn't know where else to go. He knew she wouldn't be
home; she would be here. Where she belonged.

Where he did not belong.

But he felt like he had no other place to go. He felt so alone, and he didn't
want to feel that way anymore.

He rang the doorbell, tentatively. It was, after all, almost 8:00 at night,
and they were probably just finishing their coffee and dessert. When no one
came to the door immediately, he almost turned to run away. He didn't belong

He didn't belong anywhere.

The door opened. *Shit,* muttered Mulder audibly though he hadn't meant to
say it aloud.

"Mulder?" asked Walter Skinner.

Though Mulder was well aware his boss and Mrs. Scully were involved in a
relationship, he still could not quite get used to the idea of their
involvement. He knew Scully seemed okay with it, but for some reason, Mulder
felt very territorial when it came to either of the Scully women.

"I__, I__ was wondering if Scul___, Dana was still here?" he stammered.

"Yes, she's still here. Mulder, what are you doing here?" Skinner asked. "I
thought you were going to Greenwich and spend the night there?"

"Umm, yes, Sir. I was. I mean I did, but I'm not. I mean, I'm here now,"
Mulder replied obviously flustered. He put his head down and began to wonder
if it maybe he should just cut his losses and make a run for it. He forgot
about Skinner. He didn't think he could deal with the AD tonight as well as
everything else.

"Umm, Sir. Look, never mind. It's late, and I should be getting back. Would
you wish Mrs. Scully a Happy Mother's Day for me, and tell Scully I'll see her
in the office tomorrow," and with that Mulder turned to leave.

"Mulder," Skinner called out firmly. Mulder stopped dead in his tracks when
he heard his name spoken in that tone of voice. "Mulder, get in here and tell
Maggie yourself. Scully too. C'mon."

At this point Mulder felt like kicking himself in the rear, because he
realized he was the one who did this to himself. He wondered how he always
got himself into these fixes. Why didn't he just go home?

Because he didn't want to go back to that dark, dreary, lonely apartment,
that's why. He wanted, no needed, some comfort and the Scully household was
one of the few places, other than a bar, he figured he could find some. But
he doubted very highly he'd be getting any comfort tonight. Not with the AD
present and accounted for.

He did turn around, however, and though it wasn't an out and out order, he
felt the AD's request was strong enough that he would not willfully disobey

"Yes, Sir."

"You're off duty, Mulder. Call me Walter, please."

"Yes, Sir, umm, Walter."

"Was it that painful, Mulder?"

"Yes, Sir. But I'll try to get used to it, Sir. Umm, Walter."

Walter backed away from the door to allow the younger man to enter. Walter
suppressed a smile as he followed his charge into the other room. He had no
idea as to why Mulder would just suddenly appear on Maggie Scully's front step
like a long lost pup, but here he was, and he supposed he was about to find

"Look what the wind brought in," Walter announced to the two women seated at
the kitchen table drinking coffee and munching on an assortment of Italian

"Hey Mulder! What a surprise! Oh, I know, the aroma of the cannolis Walter
brought wafted all the way to Greenwich, right?" Scully said with a chuckle.

Mulder couldn't respond. He suddenly felt very awkward and out of place,
which frightened him, because the Scully house had always felt like a safe
haven for him. But, now, he didn't feel like he belonged.

Mrs. Scully seemed to sense his discomfort and stood up to get him a mug of
coffee. She pointed to a chair for him to sit in and said, "Well, I don't
care what brought you, Fox. You know I'm always delighted to have you visit."

That Mrs. Scully. Leave it to her to say the right thing. Mulder let out a
breath that he hadn't realized he was holding and sat down. He murmured his
thanks when Mrs. Scully put the cup down in front of him, and picked it up to
his lips for a sip.

When she'd returned to her own seat, Mrs. Scully looked Mulder straight in
the eyes and gently asked, "So, Fox. What does bring you here tonight? Dana
had told me you were planning on staying overnight at your mother's in

Mulder stared into the top of the coffee cup. He wasn't exactly sure how to
begin. It was no big deal, or at least that's what he kept telling himself.
He wasn't very convincing, even to himself, so he wasn't sure if he'd be able
to convince the audience before him.

"Well, we'd kind of let things remain up in the air, you know? I mean, Mom
wasn't sure what her plans were going to be for Mother's Day, so I just kind
of showed up. I stayed for a little while, but she had other plans," he said

"She had other plans?" Scully echoed. "What the hell other plans could she
have on Mother's Day when her only son shows up at the door?" Scully was
never Mrs. Mulder's number one fan, and her feelings were obvious as she
questioned the woman's intentions.

"It's not her fault, Scully," Mulder tried to placate. "I mean, we really
hadn't decided anything definite, so when I showed up I guess she was
surprised to see me."

"Of course! Every mother would be surprised to see their only son show up at
their door on Mother's Day. Makes perfect sense to me!" Scully railed.

"Scully, we hadn't exactly been on the best of terms, lately. I mean ever
since Rhode Island__," Mulder began.

Scully shot him a glance and made an imperceptible nod toward Skinner as a way
of reminding him they'd never filled him in on the unabridged version of the
incident. Mulder nodded slightly in understanding and then continued.

"__Anyway, Mom and I had been kind of on the outs for a while. I was hoping
to make it up to her today, but she had other ideas, I mean plans. She had
made plans, so I came back here."

"Her plans were so tight they couldn't include you, Mulder?" asked Walter

"I guess not, Sir."


"Excuse me?"

"We're off duty, Mulder. I'm in a relationship with your partner's mother. I
don't think it would be inappropriate for you to call me by my first name when
we're off site and off duty. My name is Walter," he explained.

"Oh. Yes, Sir, umm, Walter. Sorry. It takes some getting used to," Mulder

Walter Skinner sighed. He found it very difficult to understand the young man
seated at the table with them. He seemed to get himself into all sorts of
unnecessary trouble, yet this time, he hadn't seemed to have done anything
wrong. He'd made a spontaneous visit to his mother to apologize for a
disagreement they'd had.

Yet she had other plans. Plans. What possible kind of plans could she have
had that couldn't include her only son on Mother's Day.

"What plans?" asked Walter.

"Umm, she, umm, she had dinner plans," Mulder stammered.

"Dinner plans? Perhaps it would have been difficult to add another person to
the reservation list?" suggested Maggie.

"As difficult as it was for us, Mom, when Walter found he could make it at the
last minute and join us for dinner at La Cote D'Argent? C'mon, Mom, this is
Christina Mulder, we're talking about, remember?" admonished Scully.

Walter's ears perked up at the tone Scully was using in discussing Mrs.
Mulder. He knew the mother-son relationship between the two Mulders was not
the best, nor had it been for a long time. But he'd thought ever since Mrs.
Mulder had recovered from her stroke, Mulder had been getting along better
with the woman.

Apparently he was wrong. He just hadn't realized how wrong.

"Mulder, tell us what happened," Scully said in soft tones.

"Nothing, Scully, really," he said, and then Mulder began to rise and said,
"You know folks, I think I'll be off. It was a long drive, and I'm a little
tired. Thanks for the coffee, Mrs. Scully. Sir. I'll see you tomorrow in
the office bright and early, Scully," he concluded with a forced cheerfulness.
He began to walk toward the door.

"Mulder," Scully called out, "please, tell me what happened."

He stopped short and stood with his shoulders hunched over a little and
replied weakly, " Nothing, Scully. Absolutely nothing." He started walking
again, but slowly enough for Scully to catch up to him and grasp his arm.

"Mulder," she pleaded, "tell me. You can tell me anything. You can trust

Scully felt him falter and then, before she could do anything other than cry
out, "Mulder!" he crumpled to the floor. "Mulder, talk to me, partner.
Please, talk to me."

He sat on his knees with his head in his hands. The tears came unabashedly
and all Scully could do was encircle him in her arms and offer mindless words
of comfort.

"Shhh, it's okay, Mulder. Everything will be all right. Shhh, it's okay."

At this point, Walter looked over at Maggie with a concerned, questioning
look. She returned his concerned expression. The couple walked over to Mulder
and Dana and knelt down next to him.

"Fox, sweetheart," cooed Maggie, "what's troubling you so much. What happened
when you saw your mother?"

He looked up and saw the soft, caring face of Maggie Scully, and broke down
into even more tears.

"Come, Fox. Let's go sit down on the couch, so we can talk. Walter, would
you help Fox stand up?" Maggie asked.

Walter was surprised Maggie made that request of him, but he complied and
grasped Mulder's elbow and gently, but firmly, and lifted him up to his feet.
Walter was a bit taken aback at exactly how much support he had to provide his
agent. He feared if he let go, his agent would fall flat on his face.

"Mulder, c'mon. I've got you. Let's go," Skinner said, and then grasped him
around his waist for added support. He then half led him, half carried him to
the couch.

Mulder sat down heavily onto the couch. Scully sat down next to him on one
side, Maggie sat down on the other, while Walter sat himself down on the
coffee table directly across from Mulder.

When he finally looked up from staring at his hands, Mulder actually startled
when he saw he was basically surrounded on all sides. He didn't know if he
was ready to share with those seated around him what had really happened in
Greenwich earlier today.

He wasn't sure if he was ready to admit to himself.

"Mulder, do you want something to drink?" Scully asked.

"Umm, yes, please," he responded, grateful for the diversion.

Maggie immediately rose and went in the kitchen. She returned moments later
with a large glass of iced tea. Ever since Dana's abduction, she'd kept iced
tea on hand for him when he visited.

"Thank you, Mrs. Scully," he said as he took the glass from her hand. He took
a deep gulp and then set it down with slightly trembling hands.

"I don't know what to say," he said hoarsely.

"Just tell us what happened, Mulder," encouraged Skinner.

Some moments passed before Mulder began speaking. Finally, he cleared his
voice and said, "Well, I decided, since it was Mother's Day, it would be a
good excuse to see my mom and try to apologize to her, for, umm, the way I'd,
umm, acted a few months ago. I didn't call her. I thought it would be
better to just show up. I guess it wasn't. I mean, I guess I should have
called her."

Mulder paused and took another sip of iced tea. He was trying so hard to keep
his feelings in check, because he really didn't want to make a fuss.

He certainly wasn't used to being fussed over.

"So, I got in the car and started driving. It was a pretty awful day, weather
wise, but I made pretty good time in spite of it. I arrived in Greenwich,
stopped off at florist shop, and then drove on to my mother's house."

"What happened when you got to your mom's house?" asked Scully.

Mulder bit on his lower lip. He reached for his glass and took another swig
of iced tea. He looked down at his fingers and then took another sip of his

"Fox, please, dear. Tell us what happened," implored Maggie.

"She doesn't want me."

The trio looked at him, then glanced at one another, and then turned back to
stare at Mulder.

"What did you say, Mulder?" asked Skinner incredulously.

"She doesn't want me."

"Fox, surely you're mistaken. What did she say that could make you believe
such a thing?" asked Maggie.

Mulder closed his eyes as he began to speak. He wasn't about to look around
into the eyes of the people in the room as he related what had happened. He
couldn't possibly bear the humiliation of being rejected yet again.

"I got to Greenwich and bought some flowers at the florist I know my mom uses.
The owner of the shop knows what she likes, so I asked her to make up a nice
bouquet for me. I thought it looked nice. I thought she would appreciate it.

"I drove over to the house and rang the doorbell. When she answered, she
looked at me and asked, 'What do you want?' Not, hello Fox, what a surprise,
or hello, Fox, how nice of you to come. No, I get, 'What do you want?'

"I was holding the bouquet of flowers in plain sight. I didn't think it would
be that difficult to figure out, but I said it out loud, "It's Mother's Day.
I came to wish you a Happy Mother's Day.

"She looked straight ahead, as if she was looking straight through me. She
said in this dull, lifeless voice, 'It's too late, Fox. It's way too late for

"I couldn't believe she said that. I told her, 'No, it's not. I'm sorry for
what I said. I shouldn't have accused you of___, I shouldn't have thought
he____. I'm sorry. I'm sorry for everything.'

"But she didn't say anything. She wouldn't look at me and she wouldn't say
anything. I felt like I was twelve years old again. I kept saying, 'I'm
sorry. It wasn't my fault. I tried, but I couldn't do anything about it.'

"God, Scully! I acted like I was twelve years old again, and it was exactly
the same. She blamed me then for all of the troubles and she blames me today.
She blamed me for losing Samantha the first time!

"But it was supposed to be me! She knows it was supposed to be me, and she
can't let go of the idea that I'd failed her and Samantha," he lamented.

"Fox," interrupted Maggie, "why would you say it was supposed to be you?"

"The file," he answered. "The file had my name on it first. Sam's was taped
over mine. It was supposed to be me, and she's hated me for it ever since.

"God, and then I had her to give back only to find out she was a cl__."
Mulder stopped himself as he looked at Mrs. Scully and then quickly looked
from Scully to Skinner's comprehending faces. When they nodded their
understanding, he continued, "My mother couldn't accept it. All she knew was
I traded my sister for Scully on that bridge. I couldn't get her to accept it
wasn't Samantha who died in that fall off the bridge.

"But now__, now when I finally have Samantha within my grasp, I can't tell
her. I can't do anything about it," he cried out.

Scully looked quickly at Walter and he returned her surprised expression.
"Mulder," she questioned, "what do you mean you have Samantha within your

Mulder opened his eyes quickly, and the frightened expression reminded Scully
of that of a startled deer caught in a car's headlights. He'd said way more
than he'd wanted to say.

"Scully, I have to go." He started to rise when Scully pushed his shoulder
down with the strength of a man three times her size.

"No way, Mulder. What do you mean you have Samantha within your grasp?"

"Oh God, Scully, please. Don't," he pleaded.

"Mulder, you found Samantha and you didn't tell me? How could you?" Scully
said, the pain was evident in her voice.

"I didn't find her. She was brought to me. It was during your final days in
the hospital for the__, the cancer. The Smoking Bastard__," he began.

"__What about the sonofabitch?" Walter interjected. "Did he hurt your

Mulder laughed joylessly out loud at that. "No, Sir. He didn't hurt her. He
was the one who brought her to me. You see, Cancer Man wanted to make a deal
with me. He was offering me an inducement to join the 'Dark Side.'" Mulder
smiled slightly at his own feeble attempt at finding some humor in the
situation. "He was the one who brought me Sam."

"Well, surely there was a struggle. I mean, why weren't we called, or at the
very least, the local authorities!" said Scully indignantly.

"There was no struggle, Scully. She came willingly with him, and left
willingly with him," Mulder explained, and then, in barely an audible voice,
he added, "He's her father, Scully. He raised her since she was a child.
He's known where she was all this time."

"What? He's known? And he finally let you see her? Are you sure it was her,
Mulder? I mean, are you sure it wasn't a clone?" asked Scully in a frustrated

"Yes, it was her. I mean, at least I think it was her. I'm pretty sure it
was her," he waffled.

"Well, Mulder, for crying out loud, why didn't you check?"

"Scully! I was so__ so nervous, so scared, and excited. Oh God, I was so
excited at the prospect of seeing Sam again. I wanted so desperately to
believe. I needed to believe it was her. But then it was too late."

"What do you mean it was too late, Fox?'' Maggie asked.

"She doesn't want me," he whispered.

"What?" they all said simultaniously.

"She doesn't want me," he repeated in a whisper.

"I don't understand, Mulder. If this was your sister, why wouldn't she want
to be with you?" asked Walter in confusion.

"She didn't believe me when I told her I was looking for her all these years.
She thought Cancerman had only just discovered me. The bastard told her our
mother was dead. She just said she couldn't deal with all of this and had to
go. She got up to leave and I grabbed her hand, and she just pleaded with me
to let her go.

"I didn't get an address. I didn't even get a name," he groaned.

"A name?" asked Scully.

"She's married. She has children. I'm a brother-in-law and an uncle. Uncle
Fox. Just like a real person. Only problem is, she doesn't want me in her
life. She's not ready to accept the possibility her _father_ lied to her. He
treated her with love and respect and she chose to take his word over mine.
She doesn't want me.

"So how can I tell my mother I've seen Samantha? I have no proof. I have
seen the one thing that would make my mother love me again, and I can't give
it to her. I can't give her daughter back, so she doesn't want her son

"They don't want me. Not Sam. Not my mother. My father never had wanted
me," he said solemnly. He then looked at the tear stained eyes of Maggie
Scully and jumped up before Scully could grab him again.

"God, I'm so sorry. This is supposed to be a happy day for you, and all I'm
doing is turning it into a day of regrets. I'll go now,'' Mulder insisted.

"Mulder." His AD's voice came through strong, clear, and authoritative.

When AD Skinner directs his agents to sit, they sit. Mulder was no exception.
When Mulder looked up at him, he was expecting to see a stern, harsh
expression. Mulder was therefore very surprised to see a softness in his eyes
that he'd never seen before, as well as hear a gentleness in voice that he
hadn't heard since Scully had been missing.

"Mulder, it's been months since you saw this woman. You've been keeping this
experience locked up inside of you all this time?" he asked rhetorically.
"Mulder, this is a helluva burden for you to have carried all this time. Why
didn't you tell someone?"

"Oh, of course, Sir. Just the thing I would have wanted to do. Tell everyone
that my twenty-five year quest, searching for the truth, for my sister, ends,
with her total rejection of me. That would be the first thing I'd want to
tell everyone."

Mulder paused momentarily as his eyes and voice took on an almost dreamlike
quality to it.

"I had such plans. I dreamt I would find Samantha and present her to my mom
as though I was presenting her as some kind of prize. I was going to get my
mom back. I was going to get my family back. I don't know, what it is about
me and Mulders. None of them want me. Not my mother, not my sister, not my
father," he said.

"But the night your father died, you said he was trying to talk to you. He
wanted to make things right with you," Scully said.

"Scully, he wanted to make things right for __him__. He wanted to use me as a
pseudo Father Confessor. He didn't call me to tell me he loved me. He didn't
give a damn about me," he argued.

"Oh Mulder, you can't say that," Scully said.

"Yeah, I can, Scully. I may have loved him, though I'll be damned if I know
why. But I know he sure as hell didn't love me. I've got the emotional and
physical scars to prove it," he declared. "No one needs to tell me whether my
father loved me or not. I know the truth on that one.

"I thought my mother did. I guess I was wrong.

"I'd always believed Samantha loved me. I guess I was wrong.

"I couldn't give any of them what they needed. I couldn't give my parents
back their daughter, and I couldn't give Sam back her childhood. I couldn't
give any of them what they needed," he mourned.

"And what about you, Fox. What do you need, sweetheart?" asked Maggie gently.

"What do I need?" he echoed in confusion.

"Yes, you. What do you need?" she asked again as she reached out to grasp his
hands into her own.

"I don't know. I mean, I left Greenwich, and all I kept thinking was I needed
to get out of there, and I wanted to see Scully, and I knew she would be here
with you, and I wanted to see you, and Scully, and then Sir, even you were
here, and___," he finally stopped to catch his breath with one deep gasp.

When the trio maintained their silence, Mulder simply said, "I wanted to come
home. I came here."

"Well, of course you came here, Fox. Don't you know home is where the heart
is?" asked Maggie with a bright smile on her face, all the while still
clasping his hands.

"Fox Mulder, we care for you. We want you in our lives. I know I can speak
for everyone here when I say, we love you, Fox Mulder," Maggie proclaimed.

"What?" Mulder asked, genuinely surprised.

"Is that so hard to believe, Mulder?" Scully asked.

"What?" Mulder sat still, stunned.

"God, Mulder, my mother just told you we love you. Why is that so hard to
believe?" Scully asked.

"You love me?" he asked looking directly at Scully.

"Well of course I love you," she said quickly.

"Yeah, but do you feel the same as I do?" he asked, suddenly shy.

"I don't understand," Scully asked.

"Scully, you are dense," interjected Walter. "He wants to know if you're _in
love_ with him like he is with you."

"I do?" he asked.

"He is?" asked Scully.

"They are," Maggie stated emphatically.

"Yeah, they are,'' Walter agreed in kind.

"Wait a minute! What about the rules against fraternization between
partners?" asked Mulder incredulously.

"What rules? What rule book do you read, Mulder?" asked the AD.

"The same one I thought I'd read. Isn't there a rule that says there's to be
no fraternization between partners?" Scully asked.

"No," was the succinct reply.

"No?" they partners replied simultaneously, to which the AD shook his head.

"And you wouldn't separate us if we decided to__, umm__," Scully hesitated.

"___Fraternize ?" Mulder completed _their_ thought.

"Why the hell would I separate the pair of agents with the highest solve rate
in my division? Hell, I think you two have the highest solve rate in the
whole damn bureau. Why the hell would I even consider breaking up a team like
yours?" Skinner asked seriously.

"Why indeed?" Scully responded.

Mulder looked first at Scully, then Walter, and finally at Maggie.

"You mean, I really did come home, didn't I?" asked a dazed Mulder.

"Yes, dear. It appears you have done just that. So now, Fox, would you mind
wishing me a Happy Mother's Day and kiss my daughter, now?" Maggie asked with
a huge smile.

"Happy Mother's Day, Mom," Mulder said with a shy, but delighted smile. He
leaned over and first presented Maggie with a tender kiss on her cheek, and
then turned to his partner.

He took one last look at Walter Skinner, as if to confirm it was really okay
for him to do this. Walter reached over beyond Mulder to clasp Maggie's hand,
and simply smiled.

Mulder took this as a definite go. He leaned into Dana Scully, embraced her
in his arms and lovingly placed his lips on hers. As he reveled in his newly
proclaimed loved for his partner, Mulder remained dazed and in awe of how
within the span of a mere couple of hours, he'd lost one family only to regain
a new one. A stronger one. A more caring, giving, and loving one.

This was not a day of regrets after all. It was most definitely a Happy
Mother's Day.

End of 1/1

Please send comments and feedback to