Title: Weak in the Knees
Rating: NC-17Please see previous posts for disclaimer/summary/notes. As always, thanks to celievamp for the beta!
On the plane, Scully laid her head back and closed her eyes. She fought to hold back her tears; tears of anger, tears of frustration, and tears of a breaking heart. What had she been trying to accomplish by confronting Morgan? Get the brunette to admit she was something other than human? Well, she’d accomplished that. Get Morgan to tell her why she ditched her? That, too, was accomplished. Determine where they stood personally? Well... she got that answer as well, didn’t she?
But then what did she expect?
Morgan had warned her that she wasn’t a good bet. But Scully had still pressed, encouraging Morgan to take a chance on what she felt between them.
Scully drifted to sleep even as her thoughts of Jess continued.
Morgan allowed herself 15 minutes to mourn. After that, she clamped down on her feelings, erected walls around her heart and focused on the job. Just as she had done for the last six years. “What’s done is done. Back to work, Morgan,” she told herself out loud.
She retrieved her laptop and opened up some files. Unless something new turned up in the case, she was going to return to DC the next day. In the meantime, even though she was on downtime, she would immerse herself anew in the case files.
Since it was still early afternoon when Scully landed at Reagan National Airport she reported back to the Hoover building. At the end of the day she drove to the safe house. When she closed the door behind herself, it struck her just how empty the place felt. She went to her room and changed. Then she started a load of laundry. After she was done with the laundry and ate a lonely dinner for one, she decided to retire for the night.
Without thinking about it, she bypassed her bedroom and went into the bedroom Morgan had used. She came to an abrupt halt when she realized just how empty the room was – all of the Morgan’s things were gone. Someone had packed up and removed her stuff. She pulled the covers back and laid down, pulling the covers up and clutching the second pillow to herself. She could just make out the faint scent of Jess. Silent tears soaked into the pillow as she drifted to sleep.
Outside, a dark sedan drove past the house and turned at the corner. It parked three blocks away. A lone figure made his way back in the shadows. He watched the house from the cover of a hedge.
Morgan was surprised when her hotel phone rang. She wasn’t expecting any calls, certainly not on the hotel phone. “Morgan.”
“Good evening, Jess. It’s Marge.”
“Hey, Marge. What’s up?”
“I was wondering what your dinner plans were.”
“Uh, I was just going to order something from room service.”
“It’s Friday night and you’re in Miami. I can think of much better places to have dinner than your hotel room. I’ll pick you up in an hour.”
Marge hung up before Jess could respond but she didn’t miss the good humor in the older woman’s voice. And, Marge did have a point. She’d probably benefit from a nice dinner out, knowing she’d likely not bother with dinner if she stayed in her room.
Morgan was ready when Marge arrived.
“How much longer are you going to be in Miami?” Marge asked over after dinner drinks.
“Actually, I’m going back to DC tomorrow.”
“So, does that mean you’re giving up on Beth’s case?”
“No! Of course not.” She paused. “This is the only case I’m working. But the answers aren’t to be found here in Miami.”
Marge took a few moments to think about Morgan’s response. “Beth’s case is related to another,” she concluded thoughtfully.
“I really can’t discuss it with you, Marge, but rest assured I’m doing everything I can to find the person who killed Beth.”
Marge nodded. “Fair enough.” She took a sip of her drink. “So, where’s your partner, that cute little redhead?”
Only Morgan’s years of experience allowed her to keep her features schooled in an impassive mask. “Agent Scully and I were only temporary partners. She’s from another division.”
Marge smirked. “I wasn’t talking about your work, Agent Morgan. I saw the way you two looked at each other. There’s more than just work between the two of you,” she finished with confidence.
“I’m not sure what you think you saw, Marge, but Agent Scully and I are not together,” Morgan replied evenly.
It was obvious Marge didn’t believe her.
It was after midnight when Jess got back to her hotel room. Marge hadn’t pressed her any further about Scully, but the redhead hadn’t been far from her thoughts all night. Once she was back in her room alone, she packed, showered and went to bed. She was awake for a long time before finally drifting to sleep.
Morgan dreamed of sparkling, blue eyes and silky, red hair; soft kisses and passionate lovemaking. And she dreamed of gunshots and blood pooling... and the ghostly pale face of Dana.
Morgan came awake with a yell. “NOOO!” She was struggling for breath and covered in a cold sweat. After a several gasping breaths, she looked at the clock radio on the nightstand: 4:37. After that dream there was no way she was going to get anymore sleep. She placed her feet on the floor and stood up. Might as well start the day.
Morgan called the airport and rearranged her flight to an earlier one. A quick shower, a change of clothes and she was good to go.
She landed in DC at 10:15 and went directly to headquarters. She received a few nods from the agents present in the bullpen as she passed through to her office. When she entered her office, she found her luggage, which had been at the safe house, in the corner. She would worry about where she’d stay later. She picked up a couple of folders on her desk and started to read.
It was after 1:00 when a figure appeared in her office doorway. “Welcome back.”
Morgan looked up and saw AD Ben Taylor as he entered. “Thanks.”
“I understand your ‘meeting’ didn’t go so well.” He paused for a beat as he sat down. “Agent Scully told me things got a little out of hand. You could have been really hurt, Morgan, or killed.”
“It was a calculated risk, one worth taking. Besides, killing me wasn’t the point. Teaching me a lesson was.”
Taylor reserved his judgment on the matter. “So what was the lesson?”
She shook her head. “They didn’t say, but I suspect it was to demonstrate that our guy can get to anyone he wants to, whenever he wants.”
“What did you find out about the men who attacked you?”
“Bill Simon was contacted by phone and hired for $3000 to ‘teach me a lesson.’ He received payment via his mailbox, though the envelope containing the money and a picture of me wasn’t sent through the mail. He in turn hired Jerry Brunson, the dead guy, for $500. Brunson had a penchant for, and a history of, beating up women. He had a record of domestic abuse and assaults. But he wasn’t very imaginative. He was a follower.”
“What about the guy in custody?”
“Bill Simon is small time. A few cons, receiving stolen goods and the like. Anything that made him money without getting his hands too dirty. Of the two he was the brains of the outfit, but that’s not really saying much. And, unfortunately, since he had no direct contact with our guy, he’s pretty much a dead end. I did order the money he had left from the $3000 be checked for prints and see if the serial numbers could be traced. I’m not holding my breath.”
“So, care to tell me why I received a call from the Director telling me Agent Scully was off the taskforce and then another one telling me she was back on? Or why she came back to DC before you did?”
Morgan carefully measured her words and tone. “A direct, explicit threat was made against her life. Given the circumstances I felt it was best not to risk her further by having her continue working the case. The Director agreed. It’s my understanding that Agent Scully expressed a strong desire to remain on the taskforce, though, until we catch this guy. However, I do not see the need for her to accompany me in the field, especially considering the threat against her. So she returned. Since I was on enforced downtime, I chose to delay my return until today.”
Taylor had been in the Bureau more than long enough to recognized Bureau-ese double speak. Something had happened between the two agents, possibly a major disagreement of some sort. He had no idea what, but with the glowing review Morgan had submitted on Scully, he suspected it wasn’t anything he’d get Morgan to reveal. It was obvious she considered it a closed matter. “I see,” he grunted. He stood up. “Well, we’re getting some new blood. Six more agents have been assigned. They’ll be here Monday. If nothing takes you out of town, I’d like you to bring them up to speed.”
Morgan worked in her office until late evening. She then left and checked into a hotel, using the Essington account to prevent anyone from tracking her.
Sunday passed with Morgan holed up in her office as well. As a result, she didn’t see Scully until she walked in Monday morning.
Scully was sitting at a desk and talking on the phone. Morgan simply entered her office and closed the door. After a few minutes she reappeared, only to head into Taylor’s office.
Scully felt her stomach tighten and her breath catch a little when Morgan arrived that morning. She hadn’t seen the brunette agent since she’d walked out on her in Miami Friday morning. Though she had dreamt of her extensively. She had spent the weekend trying to reconcile her feelings about the beautiful agent.
Though a skeptic, she had seen enough while working the X-Files to know that there were extraordinary people and things in the world; people and things that defied logical explanation. As a scientist, she had always been driven to find answers and explanations. So even though she’d been coming to terms with the reality of what Morgan was, she had a lot of questions and wanted answers. And the fact that she had allowed Morgan to get close to her, that she’d opened her heart and took such a risk on a personal level, intensified that desire for answers.
Scully hadn’t opened up her heart in longer than she cared to remember. It was just her luck when she’d finally taken a chance and risked her heart that she came face to face with one of those extraordinary things she’d been investigating for the past five and half years.
She needed to talk to Jess again. Scully couldn’t take her eyes off of Morgan when she exited Taylor’s office and headed to the elevators.
Morgan’s desk phone rang. It was Taylor, who asked her to come to his office. Once there, they discussed the imminent arrival of the six new agents. When the call came that the new agents had arrived, she headed to the elevators and went down to meet with agents and escort them up to the taskforce bullpen.
Once she brought the new arrivals up, she gathered them in a corner of the bullpen, and, with visual aid of the white boards with pictures and facts of the victims, brought the group up to speed. Most of the agents already present joined the group of new agents to listen to Morgan’s briefing. She covered everything that had happened in the case, including her encounter at Doc’s Saloon in Atlanta. Morgan then took some questions, answering them to the best of her ability.
“Each of you were added to the taskforce because of your individual abilities. I want to hear your ideas, thoughts, theories. You are the ones with the fresh eyes. If you have questions or ideas my door is open, and if I’m not available AD Taylor is.” With a nod Morgan dismissed the assembled group. She turned and started toward her office.
She turned back to the agent who called her name. “In my office.” Once they both entered her office she closed the door and turned to him. A smile lit up her face. “God, it’s good to see you, John.”
They hugged and held each other closely.
“It’s been a long time, Jessica. Too long.”
They let go and kissed before fully parting and sitting in the chairs at the work table.