Someone Else's Daughter
This is an improv fic- the author is supplied a week to write a
piece of fiction based on five elements given by the mailing list members. However, due to
other circumstances and school activities, I was only able to write this in one night.
to all my youthfic sisters, and especially to Ryn, who would have "paid to see"
an event involving Bill Jr. mentioned briefly in the piece ;)
The elements: cookie dough, a full set of Nancy Drew books, mud wrestling, a bouquet of
wilting roses, and a huge canister of lemon scented blue body glitter.
Someone Else's Daughter
I'm having that dream again; the dream I had the night your mother told
me about you.
You had small hands and small feet, but always big eyes, blue like the inside of a sea
colored marble. Just like your mother, only smaller, and devoid of that shadow that always
seemed to be hanging over her. You had innocence like the sky- despite what you were or
were not. It didn't matter if you were a child of experimentation- a child of darkness.
You were as beautiful and free as any other child.
And I spoiled you like wildfire because of that.
All it took was a pair of pleading eyes for me to surrender cold gobs
of cookie dough still in their Pillsbury wrapper, passing them to you behind your mother's
back. Only your happy little giggle gave us away, turning her scorn on us.
"Mulder!" she'd say, in mock anger, "What am I going to
do with you spoiling our daughter like that every chance you get?!"
But even she could do nothing. You were always her weakness. That was
the only thing I envied you for. Whatever you wanted, she gave. Even the huge canister of
lemon scented blue body glitter that you spotted sparkling in the window of a store in the
mall. I begrudgingly agreed with her to let you have it- and paid the price later, when my
all suits turned up the next day quite glittery and smelling suspiciously of lemons.
Imagine Skinner's surprise when I walked into his office the next day for a meeting,
trying hard to stay out of the light in hopes that he wouldn't notice. Your mom tried even
harder to keep from laughing when he asked, "Does anyone else smell lemons?"
I got my revenge later when she noticed that I had allowed you to use
every single one of her nylon stockings to make yourself an elaborate costume for no
particular reason, as you streaked around the house singing "This Nearly was
Mine" from 'South Pacific' at the top of your lungs. Sure, I had to buy her new
nylons, but it was worth it to see her face turn that shade of red.
But she gave in because of you. I know I always did.
Oh, my pretty one- you were always the sweetest sunbeam in my life. I
remember how you read the full set of Nancy Drew books in your mom's bookshelf. I helped
you write a letter to Carolyn Keene asking why Nancy seemed to be so slow in finding the
answer to the mystery- when you had already discovered it chapters before. We never did
get a reply.
We didn't mind though. You just snuggled up against me and asked for a
set of new (and harder) mysteries.
You were the only person in my life to ever snuggle against me like
that. Even your mom was a bit uncomfortable with it. But not you- we'd curl up together on
the couch and watch old movies with sticky bowls of ice cream and popcorn. We'd take
gummie bears, bite them in half, stick them onto other bears and then giggle at the
colorful combinations we came up with- just like I used to do with Sam. And at the end of
the day, I'd tuck you in (after you'd read me another chapter of the offensive Nancy Drew
book you were devouring at the moment), and you'd whisper just before you fell into the
gauzy veil of sleep, "I love you, Daddy."
No one ever told me that before.
Suffice to say that I loved you more than life itself.
Then again, it wasn't always sappy moments and great times together. I
don't even want to count the number of times, when poured over me and your mom's wedding
album with guests, you shrieked in glee, "Uncle Bill HATES Daddy!!" when they
inquired about the sudden appearance of a black eye in the second half of the photos. And
there WAS that time you asked your mother "Why does Daddy like to watch mud
wrestling?" At the time, it wasn't true... but that didn't stop your mother from
acting like a 5'3" piece of ice around me for the better part of a month. That was
probably the only time I was ever angry at you- when you asked, "Why is Mommy so
mad?" gesturing to the useless bouquet of roses that she had ignored for weeks until
they had simply wilted away.
She eventually forgave me though, and I must admit that her *methods* of forgiveness
*definitely* made it all worth it. But that's something I won't tell you about until
....In fact, I think I probably shouldn't tell you at all.
You'll probably figure it out one day on your own. You were always the clever one, digging
around in the dirt and sandbox outside in search of your own answers. When you solemnly
presented me with a mudpie, I took it with equal solemnity, thanking you for such an
exquisite, delicious gift. You were quick to point out that it would be entirely
unsanitary to consume a compacted slab of wet dirt particles swarming with bacteria. And
all that at the age of six. Ah, you were your mother's daughter!
Then you took the 'pie' away from me, and I swung you up into my arms, swinging you high
just to see where you illuminated the sun, and my heart.
But that's where the dream ends.
I'll soon be drifting back into the world of the waking. The world of reality- cruel as it
may be. A world where I don't wake up with Scully in my arms every morning, a world where
I don't struggle to get your glitter out of my suits- a world where I don't have you.
One more moment with you is all that I can ever want now. One more scraggly black and
white movie we'll quote from together, one more gummie bear, one more "I love you,
Daddy"- that's all I ask.
And then, when I wake up, I'll pretend that you never existed for me.
I'll pretend that your mother doesn't need me the way that she does.
I'll pretend that I don't understand.
And then, when I've finally pushed her away, I'll try to pretend that you were just
someone else's daughter.
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