Date: November 2001
Archive: Yes, but keep my name on it and let me know
where it is, please.
Synopsis: Mulder looks for the ship.
Feedback: Yes! Gratefully received and read aloud to
Disclaimer: I'm not so deluded as to believe that Mulder
and Scully are mine.
"So, in other words, we can tell where our world ends
rather than where theirs begins?" he says hopefully,
watching her move around his bedroom as he sits propped
against the pillows.
They'd figured it out: you locate the invisible by what is
absent rather than by what is present, by what the hidden
object denies rather than by what it asserts. And from
there it's easy. Her hands, small and quick, pack the
equipment in the foam-lined case as she speaks
dispassionately of lasers and quantum optics in the clipped
multisyllabic vocabulary that fortifies her against the
unknown. Her faith in the consolation of physics is
greater than his. She says "I should be there," then
bites her lip, not looking at him, and he suddenly
wonders about the life they haven't lived together.
She runs her fingers across the polished metal cylinders
one more time, leaving smudges as if to impart a protective
layer of herself. "You think it's madness," he says and
she half-laughs though he hadn't meant to be funny. The
bag closes with a sharp click. When had he stopped knowing
where his soul leaves off and hers begins?
It's a simple mission. He connects the dots into a matrix
of red beams, the intangible twine of a cosmic cat's
cradle. A perfect Scully web, the lines laid out like
Cartesian logic and all he needs to do is follow them to
their ineluctable conclusion, to the point where they stop
and the unknown must, by definition, begin.
She'd made him promise to do no more than look, to test the
existence of the ship, trace its contours and step back,
but he needs to know what the edge feels like. He can't
come this close and not touch the heat and texture of
another world, the living surface of a ship marked with
words of cosmic creation and destruction. He's sure that
she knows this about him, so he puts out his hand.
The wall he violates is not solid but vibrates like the
ether that used to fill the heavens. How little separates
known from unknown, security from danger, present from
future, love from mourning. 'We have always been
together,' he'd told her once, but had they ever reached
the edge of the world before? He remembers how she
shuddered under him that last night and how the moonlight
later striped across the alabaster of her back. He wonders
if they are connected in some way that neither of them
understands, if she feels the vibrating pulse that pulls
him away from her now.