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Episode 12x8: "Mauvaise Eau"
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 Written by
The X-Files: Virtual Season 12

 Series
The X-Files

 Saga
The X-Files

 Rating
Rated PG-13

 Published on
March 6, 2019

 Word Count
7,320

 Read Time
37 minutes

 Summary
A trip to see Scully’s brother Charlie turns deadly when she and Mulder detour into a small Minnesota town.



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Episode 12x8: "Mauvaise Eau"
By The X-Files: Virtual Season 12



“The X-Files” was created by Chris Carter and is the sole property of 20th Century Fox Television. This script is purely “fan fiction” and was not written for any monetary gain.

THE X-FILES

12x8

"Mauvaise Eau"

Written by: South Thompson


TEASER

FADE IN:

SCENE 1

EXT. AN OLD FARMHOUSE - NIGHT

The episode opens with an old farmhouse with unused farm equipment laying around. The ground is wet like it has been raining, and the ground is muddy and covered in tire tracks.

It's clear there's been a struggle. There is debris everywhere, mostly liquor bottles on the ground. We pan through the yard, we see that the farmhouse has a nice porch, barn and a well to the side. The rope is taught- a young woman, covered in blood and mud, pulls herself out of the well. She releases a deep breath of pain, and limps back toward the house.

FADE OUT.

END OF TEASER

ACT 1

FADE IN:

SCENE 2

INT. CAR, TWELVE MILES FROM LAMER - DAY

MULDER is driving, SCULLY is in the passenger seat.

Mulder's pulling at his collar.

MULDER

(testily)

You know, I wish I had brought the other shirt.

SCULLY

Do you mean the one I told you to bring or the one you think I told you to bring?

MULDER

I think I mean the one you told me to bring, you know, the blue one.

(beat)

SCULLY

Do you not consider what you're currently wearing to be blue?

Mulder looks down.

MULDER

Scully, you know I'm colorblind, right?

SCULLY

I know that you've claimed to be colorblind to justify your terrible taste in clothing.

MULDER

(incredulously)

I had bad taste? Come on, those suits you used to wear slip your mind?

SCULLY

(lightheartedly)

I was trying to bring some professionalism to our office.

MULDER

Those grey plaid jackets haunted my dreams for years.

SCULLY

Did I ever make an appearance in those dreams?

MULDER

(suggestively)

Not in those outfits, you didn't.

Scully smiles, Mulder keeps tugging at his collar.

SCULLY

Quit tugging, you'll stretch it out.

She reaches over to fix his collar, Mulder swats her hand away. Scully frowns a bit.

MULDER

It's fine, I got it.

(beat)

MULDER

But no, I don't consider what I'm wearing to be true blue. I'd say it's more of a sky blue, rather than an azure. Perhaps even a cerulean blue?

Scully glares at him. Mulder grins.

MULDER

Oh come on, that was funny.

SCULLY

(Testily)

Mulder, are you suggesting that anything about that situation was humorous?

MULDER

Gallows humor is a good way to work things out of our soul, especially if you never talk about things that bother you?

His voice trails off as Mulder side eyes Scully. She finally breaks her glare.

SCULLY

Mulder, I appreciate you wanting to talk about Charlie, but really, I'm fine.

MULDER

I know you're fine, it's me who's not fine. This is the first time I've met Charlie-- what if I let slip that I think his sister is hot?

Scully smiles. Mulder sees this and keeps pushing it.

MULDER

In all seriousness though, I think talking about everything that's going on would be a good idea, for me and you both.

SCULLY

When have we ever talked about... Anything, really?

MULDER

That's my point. We've been driving for our whole lives, away from home. I don't want to stop moving to find out our home is on fire.

SCULLY

You're afraid of a house fire?

MULDER

Metaphor, Scully.

Mulder reaches over to grab Scully's hand.

MULDER

(quietly)

You can always talk about whatever's on your mind, you know, right?

Scully looks out the window.

SCULLY

(quietly)

It's just been hard, since Mom.

Mulder squeezes her hand. They pass a sign for LaMer.

MULDER

Let's grab a bite.

CUT TO:

SCENE 3

INT. LAMER, MICKEY'S DINER - DAY

Mulder and Scully are sitting in a diner. The paint theme is mostly yellow with some light blues thrown in. There's a jukebox in the corner that hasn't been touched in twenty years and a country song from the 2000's is playing on the radio. Mulder is drinking a cup of coffee while Scully eats a piece of pie.

WAITRESS

Can I get you guys anything else?

The WAITRESS continues to list the specials of the day- she is chewing gum, has frizzy hair, and would rather die than be there.

SCULLY

No thank you, we're fine for now. Would you mind throwing this away for me?

Scully hands the waitress an empty Gatorade bottle. The WAITRESS looks like she's just been handed a rat.

WAITRESS

We don't allow drinks in here.

SCULLY

Yes, I'm sorry, it's for medical reasons.

The WAITRESS snaps her gum, takes the bottle, and walks away.

SCULLY

I think I hate that stuff more than she does.

MULDER

At least it's only for awhile. Still though, it's good for you and the baby, right? You're feeling alright, and everything?

The WAITRESS perks her ears-- she heard about miracle baby number two. Mulder reaches out across the table to take her hand.

SCULLY

I'm fine, Mulder. Drinking these things just helps me stay hydrated.

She makes a face and sets the bottle aside.

MULDER

Not a fan of the flavor?

SCULLY

No, not entirely.

Mulder smiles lightly. A bus GIRL comes by -- it's the girl from the first act. There are bruises covering her hands and face, which can only be seen when her hair isn't in her face.

Mulder and Scully reach out to the girl.

MULDER

Miss, are you alright?

GIRL

I'm fine.

SCULLY

Miss, I'm a medical doctor.

Scully reaches for the girl while Mulder stretches out to stop her.

SCULLY

Let me take a look.

GIRL

(angrily)

I said I'm fine!

The girl grabs Scully's plate and Mulder's mug and drops them into her bus bin, loudly. Mulder gives Scully a look that says "Don't push it" and Scully fires back with another look of her own. The loud noise gets the attention of the WAITRESS, who comes back over as the girl scurries away.

WAITRESS

That girl isn't right.

SCULLY

Do you know what happened to her? We could help.

WAITRESS

Don't know. Not my business.

The WAITRESS gives Scully the once over, eyes landing directly on her belly.

WAITRESS

If you get involved, you'll get your "roommate" involved as well. Best to stay away.

The WAITRESS sets the check down and walks away.

MULDER

Roommate?

Scully looks down at her belly, then back up at Mulder.

MULDER

Oh.

TIRES SCREECH, CRASHING NOISES. Everyone in the diner jumps up to look out the window, while Mulder and Scully run outside.

CUT TO:

SCENE 4

EXT. INTERSECTION - DAY

There's an accident at the nearest intersection--

someone ran a red light with one vehicle having t-boned the other. One of the drivers gets out and starts apologizing.

The other driver is furious, and steps out of the car. He has yellow pus on his eyes and ears. In his rage, pulls a gun and shoots the first driver dead.

FADE TO:

SCENE 5

INT. POLICE STATION - DAY

Mulder and Scully are watching the Sheriff question the MURDERER through the one way mirror in the interrogation room. The Sheriff and Murderer's conversation floats through the scene, while we hang out behind the glass with Mulder and Scully. The Murderer still has pus from his eyes and ears and is trying to dab the pus away with a napkin.

MURDERER

(shakily)

Look... I'm not crazy. I'm not loosing my mind, or drunk, or high. That guy was gonna come after me. You can't trust people like that. He had been funny for awhile, couldn't trust anything he did anymore.

SHERIFF

That doesn't mean you can shoot somebody, Frank.

Their conversation continues as we cut to Mulder and Scully talking behind a one way mirror.

SCULLY

(reading report)

The victim's name was Conner Anderson. He was fifty years old, no family, lived alone. Arrested for possession of marijuana in 1993.

MULDER

Haven't we all been arrested?

SCULLY

Not for marijuana, no.

The Sheriff leaves the interrogation room to talk with Mulder and Scully. He's a short, fat man who is most certainly unpleasant.

SHERIFF

Hey there, FBI. Name is Sheriff Sven Eigenmann, but it doesn't seem like you'll get a chance to use it.

MULDER

Why's that, Sheriff?

SHERIFF

Seems pretty clear to me what's going on here. Francis DeGorde has always been a waste of skin. Anderson was heading that way. Filth takes care of filth.

MULDER

Little insensitive, don't you think? A man was just killed in your town.

SHERIFF

DeGorde isn't worth the thought. He's been living off his dad's land, tokin' up out there. There's not even a building or electricity or anything, gets his water from the lake.

MULDER

Does DeGorde have an explanation for whatever infection he has going on here? Could that be a factor?

SHERIFF

Probably all that lake water; you're bound to get something weird in your system from that.

SCULLY

Why did DeGorde say that Anderson changed?

SHERIFF

Probably because he did. You folks aren't from around here, it can get pretty lonely if you don't run with the pack. Anderson used to, until he stopped awhile back. Hell, we used to go to Mickey's for a bite every now and again, but I couldn't take him anywhere.

The Sheriff leans in conspiratorially.

SHERIFF

(whispers)

He even became a Packers fan.

SCULLY

What was the cause for the change in DeGorde and Anderson?

Sheriff SVEN shrugs. Mulder pulls Scully aside.

MULDER

(quietly)

Sheriff of Nottingham over here might be right, Scully. Seems like a dispute between a junkie and someone who was getting tired of the eternal pissing contest going on here- have you noticed how everyone here is wearing their own ass as a hat?

SCULLY

This town may have a Lord of the Flies level of seclusion but they aren't terrible, Mulder. It doesn't makes sense that a whole group of people would be aggressive for no reason, and I think murder goes beyond impoliteness.

Mulder acknowledges her words.

SCULLY

Besides, aren't you at all curious why Anderson was acting strangely? If DeGorde is an addict, it doesn't explain why Sheriff Eigenmann confirms the story. And a simple infection couldn't explain the pus on DeGorde's eyes and ears.

MULDER

Unless everyone's sick. LaMer could be a hot spot for the new Ebola, Scully, and I don't want the kid to come out looking funny after exposure to whatever's here.

SCULLY

This baby's going to look like Skinner, Mulder, Ebola or not.

Mulder shoots her a look.

SCULLY

I want to do the autopsy; you and Sheriff Eigenmann can go to Anderson's house and look around.

Mulder looks at her surprised and Scully gently guides him back towards Sheriff Sven.

SCULLY

Besides, you owe me one, G-Man.

Mulder looks sheepish as Scully smiles - she's been waiting to cash in on her favor for years. They turn to look DeGorde in the interrogation room, who has his head in his hands.

FADE TO BLACK.

END OF ACT ONE

ACT TWO

FADE IN:

SCENE 6

INT. AUTOPSY BAY, A FEW HOURS LATER - DAY

Scully is cleaning up from her autopsy. She hears some talking outside, and goes to investigate. The bus girl is here, collecting some of Anderson's things. Scully introduces herself, and pulls the GIRL to the side.

SCULLY

(gently)

I'm Special Agent Scully, I've been doing Conner Anderson's autopsy. You're a friend of the victim?

The GIRL nods.

SCULLY

What's your name?

GIRL

(sniffling)

Rosie Sanchez.

Scully gently reaches up to look at ROSIE's wounds on her face. Rosie smacks her hand away. As Rosie raises her hand up, Scully sees that Rosie has a handgun tucked into her pants.

SCULLY

Rosie, these look bad. Did Anderson do this to you?

ROSIE

(crying)

No, no he was my friend.

Scully gently raises her hand back to Rosie's face, carefully examining her wounds.

SCULLY

I'm a doctor, let me help you.

ROSIE

You said that already.

SCULLY

How did you get to know Anderson?

Scully offers Rosie a tissue.

ROSIE

He was just really nice, you know? We met at the grocery store in town, he helped me pick out a card for my mom once I got here.

(beat)

He was kind when not a lot of other people are.

SCULLY

How long have you been in LaMer?

ROSIE

Few months. I didn't have anywhere to go. Once I found a house, Conner and Blue would come over every once and awhile, keep me company. We'd watch the games, ya know? I'm an Eagles fan.

SCULLY

Blue?

ROSIE

The dog.

(beat)

SCULLY

Why did you come to LaMer in the first place?

Rosie looks down, almost ashamed.

ROSIE

You ever felt like something was just... Pulling you somewhere?

Scully instinctively touches the back of her neck.

ROSIE

Sometimes that happens, like we're being pulled from one side of the world to another. Sometimes there's we're so surrounded by fear that there's fire in the air and when we breathe it in we burn our lungs so badly we can't stay anymore.

SCULLY

That's rather poetic.

ROSIE

Sometimes all that happens. Sometimes we just deserve the flood that's coming but we're too chickenshit to stand up to it.

(beat)

Listen, Agent Scully. You gotta get out of here. LaMer isn't a place for good people; it'll poison you. You gotta get out of here. LaMer will poison you.

Rosie walks away, leaving Scully confused.

CUT TO:

SCENE 7

EXT. ANDERSON'S HOUSE - DAY

Mulder and Sheriff Sven arrive at Anderson's trailer. It's an old white trailer that has been on the property awhile, along with a shed and some old farm equipment. Mulder and Sheriff Sven talk as they walk through the thick woods to the trailer.

MULDER

Is this Anderson's house?

SHERIFF

Yep. Doesn't seem like a great place to be, but Anderson had to move into that trailer. Cabin burned down a few months ago and he couldn't afford to build a new one. Didn't want to leave either. He really did love LaMer.

Mulder stares at Sheriff Sven.

SHERIFF

(aggressively)

Don't gimme that look. Just because LaMer isn't some bright shiny city doesn't mean that it's not worth living here.

MULDER

(testily)

Oh, I get the dream to live out in an unremarkable place, Sheriff.

MULDER

It's the attitude of people around here that doesn't seem so desirable.

SHERIFF

(scoffs)

Another tourist, expecting folks to be all "Minnesota Nice" without any respect for our lives. It's hard work out here and LaMer is better without outsides like you and that girl.

MULDER

That "girl" is an FBI agent.

SHERIFF

Not your girl-- the new one, at Mickey's.

Mulder pauses.

MULDER

Do you mean the bus girl?

SHERIFF

Yep, that's her. New kid, came up here a few months ago. Just trash, her kind usually is. Doesn't really belong, doesn't go to church, and doesn't watch the games in the bar.

MULDER

Maybe she's a Saints fan.

Sheriff Sven is shocked- his world is clearly shaken by the idea of a Saints fan in his town. Mulder and Sheriff Sven enter the trailer- the trailer is in complete disarray. The furniture is old and worn with an old television in the corner. A set of tools is down by the kitchen sink and the cupboards are opened, like a plumber had been doing repairs to the pipes. There are plastic water bottles everywhere, as well as unopened cases in the corner of the trailer.

MULDER

(sarcastically)

Anderson had a drinking problem.

SHERIFF

Anderson had a well, wouldn't have needed to drink water from a bottle if his pipes were working.

MULDER

Guy must have been showering with bottled water then.

MULDER

It would make sense that DeGorde would have felt threatened by a guy who hadn't taken a proper bath in awhile.

BARKING. The men draw their weapons and run outside.

Mulder approaches the shed, kicks the door down and enters, FBI style. The noise is a dog, chained to the floor. Mulder calls over Sheriff Sven who comes running. Sheriff Sven sees the dog and quickly moves to untie him.

MULDER

This is Anderson's dog?

SHERIFF

(distressed)

Sure is. Blue's a good dog, Anderson shouldn't have kept him like this.

Sheriff Sven is working at Blue's chains. Blue is barking loudly and snarling, and has yellow pus around his eyes, ears, and mouth. Sheriff Sven manages to untie Blue and all hell breaks loose. Mulder grabs a pitchfork leaning against the wall, but Blue lungs at Mulder, snapping and snarling.

Blue gets his teeth into Mulder's leg, causing Mulder to scream in pain. Sheriff Sven isn't having any of that- he grabs Blue by the collar and pulls him off Mulder, throwing Blue against the wall. Blue whines for a moment, but not long. Sheriff Sven grabs the pitchfork.

MULDER

Wait, what are you doing?!

Sheriff Sven doesn't stop and think. He approaches Blue like an ancient hunter, and skewers the dog against the wall.

CUT TO:

SCENE 8

LAMER MOTOR CIRCLE, 8:57 P.M. - NIGHT

Mulder is in the hotel room laid out on the bed. His leg is bandaged poorly and he's watching some TV with a water glass on the bedside table. Scully walks in, carrying one of the Gatorade bottles.

MULDER

(concerned)

Where have you been? I've been waiting for you.

He struggles to sit up, Scully rushes to the bed and sits him down.

SCULLY

(equally concerned)

I've been in the morgue, what happened to you?

Scully sits Mulder back down on the bed and doctors at him.

MULDER

(groaning)

Got bit.

SCULLY

By what?

MULDER

Big Blue.

SCULLY

(surprised)

Wait... Do you mean Anderson's dog Blue?

MULDER

(equally surprised)

Yeah, how did you know?

He sees the Gatorade bottle in her hand. Mulder tries to sit up again, groans in pain, and slowly edges himself back down.

MULDER

You drank enough of those, right? You need to stay hydrated.

SCULLY

I'm fine, Mulder.

MULDER

(angrily)

I know that you're fine, and I know that I know that you're fine, but one of these days I'd like you to stop telling me what you think I want to believe.

There's an awkward pause. Scully looks hurt and Mulder rubs his eyes.

MULDER

Shit... Sorry. I'm not feeling too well.

Mulder's clearly in pain and Scully brings a hand to his forehead. She takes it away after second and lets it rest on his chest.

SCULLY

(gently)

No fever. Blue must have taken a good chunk out of you. What did you do, call his mother a bitch?

MULDER

Har har. The Sheriff and I rescued him from near starvation, actually. Anderson had him chained up in the shed near his house... Trailer... Thing. Eigenmann was surprised to see Blue like that; he said Anderson loved that dog.

SCULLY

That's consistent with Rosie's description of Conner.

MULDER

Rosie?

SCULLY

The girl from the diner. Rosie's new to this town, came in a few months ago. Apparently Anderson became her friend.

MULDER

Sheriff Eigenmann said that Rosie was trouble, maybe a junkie. Referred to her as trash. I think we've just gotten caught up a town feud.

SCULLY

What makes you say that?

MULDER

We didn't find anything odd at Anderson's place besides Cujo. Blue had that same pus that DeGorde had this morning. Anderson wasn't living very well, he was without running water. He had to buy bottled water just to survive.

SCULLY

I wonder why Anderson didn't ask any of his neighbors for help.

MULDER

I don't - the Sheriff took out Blue with a pitchfork. Skewered the poor dog right against the wall, then just left him there.

(beat)

This town is terrible, Scully. It's making everyone sick.

Scully stands up to pace the room and think.

SCULLY

You know, Mulder, that's what Rosie said today, that LaMer was poisoning everybody. What if we're dealing with some thing more human? I did Conner Anderson's autopsy, I looked at his records; Anderson was half Ojibwe. Rosie is Hispanic. These people don't have much contact with the outside world, and most likely have their exposure to people of color via the media.

MULDER

I think you're on to something there, actually. Sheriff Eigenmann did say something about "her kind". It's sad that this is the situation here, but it's no X-File.

Scully nods, but doesn't sit back down.

SCULLY

Still, I want to talk to Rosie again in the morning and visit her home.

SCULLY

She still won't explain the sources of her injuries and Anderson came over to her house often, I bet we'll find something there. There's also no explanation for the pus that we're finding on these people.

Mulder just stares at her.

SCULLY

Mulder, don't tell me you don't like weird pus anymore.

MULDER

Scully, this case isn't even a case anymore. You said it yourself, we're dealing with human factors here. There's no X-File, so why do you want to stay?

Scully sits down finally.

SCULLY

I don't want to go see Charlie.

MULDER

(impatiently)

Scully--

SCULLY

When Mom and Charlie fought, I wasn't there.

Scully takes a moment to collect herself, working through whatever's bothering her.

SCULLY

You said you're afraid of coming home to a fire, like things could get so bad that we'd burn up inside before the other one could hear it?

Mulder nods.

SCULLY

Being home after Charlie left was like that. I didn't even ask Mom what they had fought about, and I had seen the kindling for years.

SCULLY

I didn't call Charlie to ask if he was alright, I didn't try to get them back together, I just left because I was the FBI agent with the quest and I had a shovel in the desert.

MULDER

(gently)

Maybe a backhoe.

Scully smiles weakly.

SCULLY

I don't want him to know that I dug for the truth everywhere by my own home.

MULDER

Scully, what could you have done?

SCULLY

I could have put out the fire.

MULDER

And if we stay here, finish this case, you'll feel like you've atoned for whatever you didn't do with Charlie?

SCULLY

(sighing)

No, but I won't have to face him just yet.

FADE TO BLACK.

END OF ACT TWO

ACT THREE

FADE IN:

SCENE 9

EXT. 1945 CEDAR AVE - DAY

Mulder, Scully, and Sheriff Sven arrive at Rosie's house, Scully with her Gatorade - it's the house from the opening.

There isn't a car around and the front door is halfway open.

It looks around the same, with a few more tire tracks around.

MULDER

No car. Must not be here.

SHERIFF

Sanchez doesn't own a vehicle, least not one that has plates. She might still be around.

SCULLY

It doesn't look like anyone has been here for awhile. Are you sure this is the place?

SHERIFF

(grumpily)

I'm sure.

Mulder, Scully, and Sheriff Sven enter Rosie's home. They walk into an open space, one half being a living room and the other being an open kitchen with an large island in the middle. There are beer and alcohol bottles everywhere, as well as anti-psychotic medication. There's limited furniture, and what is there looks like it could be a matching piece from Anderson's set. There's a half eaten cheese sandwich on the counter.

MULDER

So where's our friend?

SHERIFF

Sanchez isn't our friend. Why are we even out here anyway?

SCULLY

(placating)

Sheriff, if you'd prefer to leave, I'm sure my partner and I can handle this.

Sheriff Sven doesn't take this well and narrows his eyes.

Scully looks like she's about to gear up into an argument, but Mulder interjects.

MULDER

Looks like there was an argument here, somewhat recently as well. That table has been moved around and there's a scuff mark on the floor.

SHERIFF

Sanchez cleaning up after Anderson?

MULDER

Maybe.

SCULLY

Rosie said Anderson was her friend and that he wouldn't hurt her. Why clean up after a fight once Anderson was dead?

Mulder gestures to the medication and the alcohol.

MULDER

She's been mixing business and pleasure.

SCULLY

A combination of medication and alcohol wouldn't explain her behavior at the morgue yesterday, nor would it explain why she would destroy her home then put it back together.

MULDER

That's assuming it was Sanchez that made this mess.

SHERIFF

(O.S)

Agents, you better come take a look at this.

Sheriff Sven is squatting in the middle of the kitchen behind the island, where there is a large amount of blood on the floor and on the counter. Scully sets her Gatorade down on the island counter top.

SHERIFF

Damn it. Now I have to go after her again.

SCULLY

Again?

Busted. Sheriff Sven looks guilty.

SHERIFF

(defensively)

Well, I'm not going to just wait around for someone like her to introduce drugs and shit into my town! You know she came here with a record. Narcotics and theft, back in Philly. Saw the damn rap sheet myself. I had to shake her down a bit, just as a warning.

SCULLY

(angrily)

Rosie's past is none of your business, Sheriff, and it is by no means a reason to assert your insecurities.

SCULLY

You have yet to produce any evidence that Rosie has been committing crimes here in LaMer. Your own individual prejudices are overriding your judgement, and frankly, your insufferable ego and personality are grounds enough for a serious review to determine if you're fit for duty.

Sheriff Sven colors a deep purple.

SHERIFF

(viciously)

You little--

Mulder steps between them.

MULDER

Alright, let's just take it easy, Scully.

Scully looks affronted, Mulder is taking Sheriff Sven's side.

SCULLY

(affronted)

Take it easy?

MULDER

(to EIGENMANN)

Calm down, both of you.

SHERIFF

(yelling)

Calm down, my ass! Your girl here--

SCULLY

I am a Special Agent, Sheriff Eigenmann, not a scared young woman for you to threaten.

Sheriff Sven jumps at Scully and Mulder holds him back.

Scully takes a step back and puts a hand on her stomach, protecting her baby. Sheriff Sven and Mulder scuffle for a bit before Mulder throws him off. Sheriff Sven throws a stink eye at Mulder and Scully and dusts himself off.

SHERIFF

You people weren't called in, and you have no authority to be here. I'm bringing Sanchez in for possession and assault.

He eyes Mulder.

SHERIFF

I'll see you at the station.

He leaves the house, leaving Mulder and Scully in the house alone.

SCULLY

Eigenmann has gone insane, Mulder. We have to stop him. There's no scientific evidence of any of his claims--

MULDER

(angrily)

What the hell are you thinking?

SCULLY

(taken aback)

Excuse me?

MULDER

You're picking fights and now you want to rope me into your behavior?

SCULLY

Picking fights? Mulder, he will kill her if he gets the chance. There's something wrong in this town, something that poisons everyone here.

MULDER

(exhausted)

Scully, I'm tired of arguing with you on this.

SCULLY

What argument are you talking about? Look at the facts, Mulder. Eigenmann wants to bring Rosie in on possession and murder. It's clear that she has a problem with substance abuse but assault is totally unjustified.

MULDER

Unjustified? Are you suggesting that stain in the kitchen is just ketchup?

SCULLY

Rosie had injuries all over her body, there's no evidence that it's not her own blood.

SCULLY

Besides, who would the victim be? Anderson? Eigenmann? DeGorde?

MULDER

(frustrated)

It doesn't matter who the victim is--

Mulder kicks a bottle in anger.

MULDER

Damn it, Scully, you're wrong!

Mulder sighs and rubs his eyes.

MULDER

(exasperated)

I understand that seeing Charlie is going to be difficult.

SCULLY

(coldly)

This isn't about Charlie, not right now. This is about a young woman whose life might be in danger because a crazed, prejudiced man came after her and we didn't do anything to stop it.

Mulder snaps and stares at her.

MULDER

You're accusing me of leaving her to die? After everything, you're calling me a coward?

SCULLY

No Mulder, I'm not. I'm just saying that--

MULDER

(venomously)

You only got us stuck in this town to satisfy your own Catholic guilt. You're gonna say I'm too afraid but here you are, making sure your dead father isn't ashamed of you. Newsflash, Agent Scully, my father died a long time ago and I don't fear his shadow anymore.

As he talks, Mulder walks towards Scully. She starts to step back, not quite afraid yet. Every word Mulder speaks is laden with poison.

SCULLY

(calmly)

Mulder, I need you to look at the facts here. Rosie might have a record but she isn't dangerous.

MULDER

(sardonically)

Oh really? After all these years, you decide to play believer even when the proof you're wrong is biting you in the ass. Where were you then, back in the old days?

MULDER

Too scared that your reputation would be ruined if you stuck that skinny neck out for once? Worried you're end up like your partner?

Scully looks sick to her stomach as Mulder keeps approaching her, increasingly violent and angry.

MULDER

Or did it just take another "special" agent to turn things around for you? Couldn't let me be the right one for once, but Doggett shows up and you're more than willing to bend over backwards for him.

As Mulder gets more and more crazy, he starts rubbing at his eyes.

SCULLY

(worriedly)

Mulder, you're tired and exhausted. You need to calm down.

Mulder stops rubbing his eyes, and Scully sees the same yellow pus running from them.

SCULLY

Mulder, I need you to come with me. You're sick the same thing that drove those people to murder.

MULDER

(sarcastically)

I'm fine, Dana. Really. You just love to play doctor with me though. Couldn't get any more from my old man, so you thought you'd examine the younger model, huh?

Scully looks like she might cry or shoot Mulder, whichever comes first. Mulder is manic.

MULDER

What's the problem? I know you like your men a little rough. Padgett and Jerse are more your speed, how about you use me and lose me, then get a matching tattoo to mark the occasion?

That does it. Scully backs all the way back to the wall and draws her gun. She is in a panic.

MULDER

Pointing a gun at me? Never seen this before. Though, I'm taking bets on whether you'll pull the trigger this time or not.

Mulder continues to approach Scully.

SCULLY

Mulder, snap out of it! Your mother's name is Teena. Your sister's name is Samantha. Your badge number is...

(beat)

Shit.

Mulder approaches her, eyes and nose streaming with the pus.

CRACK. Mulder freezes, then falls forward. Rosie stands behind him, holding the gun that she used to hit Mulder over the head with.

ROSIE

Hey, Doc.

FADE OUT.

END OF ACT THREE

ACT 4

FADE IN:

SCENE 10

INT. ROSIE'S HOUSE - EVENING

Rosie and Scully are tying Mulder to a chair in the kitchen.

SCULLY

Make sure not to tie it too tight, you'll cut off his circulation.

ROSIE

This guy comes at you, and you want to make sure he's still breathing?

SCULLY

I do.

Scully and Rosie finish tying up Mulder and stand up. There's a brief moment when the women acknowledge each other as comrades, then slip back into their roles as FBI agent and outsider.

SCULLY

I'm assuming that's your blood in the kitchen?

Rosie nods and swallows.

ROSIE

Eigenmann came to my house. He kept saying that I wasn't anything, that I shouldn't be here. He grabbed me and I was afraid.

(beat)

I guess it got physical.

SCULLY

How did you escape?

ROSIE

I ran outside, hid in the well. It's run dry so I knew I'd have a space to hide.

SCULLY

(surprised)

You climbed down a well?

ROSIE

Yeah. Wasn't too bad. Between getting shot by a cop and a little exercise, I'd take the workout.

She wipes her face with her sleeve.

ROSIE

I suppose it's a good thing there's no water. I could have gotten an infection or something.

Scully has a revelation.

SCULLY

Infection. You said there's no water in your well, and you've been here a few months. You can't have been drinking mostly alcohol in that time though.

ROSIE

Well sure, but this house is old and needs repairs. I haven't been here long enough to get the water working properly. I've been getting bottled water regularly.

Scully looks at Mulder, who's still out cold.

SCULLY

(quietly, to Mulder)

It makes sense, Mulder. You've been drinking the local stuff since you've got here.

SCULLY

(to Rosie)

There's something in the water that's making everyone sick. Neither you nor Anderson had enough regular contact with the local water supply; that's why you haven't become infected yet.

ROSIE

What about that stuff?

Rosie gestures to her eyes and ears.

ROSIE

It's not always there, you know? Your friend here didn't have any when he walked in.

SCULLY

Mulder hadn't been exposed for long, perhaps the infection hadn't taken hold yet.

ROSIE

Or maybe he was just holding back on all that shit he wanted to say. You slept with his dad? That's cold.

Scully takes a step back, offended.

SCULLY

My personal life is none of your business, Sanchez.

ROSIE

Really? 'Cuz your personal life is tied to a chair in my kitchen.

Scully looks back at Mulder, who stirs lightly.

SCULLY

He won't be tied for long. We need to get out of here, we can go to the police station.

Rosie is visibly bothered.

SCULLY

(urgently)

Rosie, we need to move now. I can protect you from Eigenmann.

ROSIE

(quietly)

It's not him I'm worried about.

Rosie eyes Scully once and down; her moment of vulnerability over, Rosie returns to suspecting Scully.

ROSIE

Why aren't you sick?

Scully looks at the Gatorade on the counter. As she stares at it, she hears a car approach. Sheriff Sven returns.

SCULLY

We have to get out of here.

ROSIE

What about him?

Scully grabs a pen and paper from her coat, writes "DRINK ME" on the paper, and leaves it and her Gatorade bottle in Mulder's lap. Standing up, she quickly kisses him on the forehead.

SCULLY

He'll be okay.

Scully and Rosie leave the house to find that Sheriff Sven is pulling up. Rosie hides her gun behind her back.

SHERIFF

I knew it! I knew you had that bitch with you!

Sheriff Sven jumps out of his car and approaches the house angrily. Walking down off the porch, Scully approaches Sheriff Sven with her hands outstretched, like she's trying to calm an angry bull. Rosie stays back on the porch, hands behind her back.

SCULLY

(calmly)

Sheriff, you have been poisoned. You're not well, we need to get you to a hospital.

SHERIFF

Bullshit.

SCULLY

I can arrest you and drag you to jail or we can talk about this like adults.

SHERIFF

What the hell makes you think I've been poisoned in the first place?

SCULLY

The water supply has been poisoned. It has been affecting the local population, causing some sort of infection as well as an extremely reaction to stressful stimuli.

SHERIFF

Stressful stimuli like what?

SCULLY

A new person moving into your town, an old friend leaving you.

SCULLY

DeGorde had been living off the land and had gotten sick from the water in the lake. Blue must have gotten sick from a natural water source, which is why Anderson had to lock him up. You saw their reactions to stress, you saw their infections.

Sheriff Sven listens to her words and looks concerned. She's making a valid case.

SCULLY

How long have you been sick, Sheriff?

SHERIFF

Are you off your nut, FBI?

ROSIE

(from the porch)

No more than you are, puta.

SHERIFF

You watch your mouth.

ROSIE

Make me.

Sheriff Sven draws his weapon.

SCULLY

(yelling)

Both of you, just stop!

Scully steps between Rosie and Sheriff Sven.

SCULLY

Sheriff, I need you to calm down. You've been exposed to something that infects their host during times of extreme duress.

SHERIFF

Do I look infected?

SCULLY

If you've been exposed to any of the water in this town, then you've been infected.

Sheriff Sven pales.

SCULLY

How many people in this town use the local water supply?

SHERIFF

Nearly all.

SCULLY

Worse case scenario, you've got the majority of your population infected with an unknown entity. Best case scenario, I'm wrong and wasting your time.

She slowly walks towards Sheriff Sven.

SCULLY

You don't have to believe me, you don't even have to like me, but you should listen to me. You love this town, Eigenmann. Do the right thing.

Sheriff Sven swallows, clearly thinking. He sees Rosie on the porch and his face sours.

SHERIFF

What about her?

ROSIE

What about me?

SHERIFF

You're still a junkie and you still don't belong in my town.

Rosie takes a step down off the porch and down into the front yard, in direct line with Sheriff Sven.

ROSIE

You just want me to leave so that you don't have to face the fact that you get your rocks off by beating women.

Sheriff Sven's face grows red.

SHERIFF

Shut up.

Rosie takes another step towards him.

ROSIE

You can't take a swing at me while she's here, can you?

SHERIFF

I wouldn't touch you with a ten foot pole, you filthy animal.

Rosie slaps Sheriff Sven hard across the face.

SCULLY

That's enough!

Scully pulls Rosie back. Sheriff Sven touches his face gingerly; there's pus on his fingers as he pulls them away from his nose. He looks down, terrified that his body is betraying him. He looks back at Rosie and his fear turns to rage.

SHERIFF

(viciously)

You cancerous little bitch.

Sheriff Sven lunges toward Rosie. Scully steps in front of him and he throws her down. Sheriff Sven has his hands around Rosie's throat.

SHERIFF

You did this, you whore!

Sheriff Sven has succumbed to his illness. There's pus streaming from his eyes and ears.

There's a brief struggle, then BANG. Sheriff Sven slumps back, Rosie's gun is smoking. She throws the gun down, startled. Her eyes are on fire with adrenaline and fear.

Rosie stares at Scully, who is catching her breath on the ground. Rosie sees Scully hurt on the ground and loses her fire.

ROSIE

(tearfully)

See ya, Doc.

Rosie turns and runs into the woods.

CUT TO:

SCENE 11

EXT. OUTSIDE MICKEY'S - DAY

It is the next day. The CDC is swarming over the town in biomedical suits, running in and out from triage tents.As we walk through the town, we see the WAITRESS wrapped up in a blanket, drinking from bottled water. She is crying and clearly distressed. Scully walks up to Mulder, who is wrapped in a blanket, propped up on a cot. As Scully reaches him, Mulder entangles her fingers with his.

SCULLY

How are you doing?

MULDER

I feel like I just sneezed out my soul.

SCULLY

Ah, so you're feeling normal.

MULDER

Pretty much. What's the game plan here?

SCULLY

The CDC is taking over and starting a decontamination routine for the citizens. It'll be awhile before the changes take permanent hold, but they seem confident that whatever's been poisoning these people can be reversed.

MULDER

Did they determine a cause of the infection?

SCULLY

When the body becomes angry, heart rate and testosterone increases, and cortisol decreases.

MULDER

The stress hormone?

SCULLY

Exactly. It's entirely possible that some sort of infection, when exposed to that concoction of chemicals,could cause the body to produce what would look like a sinus infection, like how the body reacts to the cold virus.

MULDER

(nodding)

What about Rosie?

SCULLY

They won't find her, especially when she doesn't want to be found. Rosie Sanchez was arrested with another suspect for possession last year.

MULDER

So that's why she came here, to avoid the law?

SCULLY

The other suspect was shot in police custody in front of her. It's all in the records Eigenmann dug up.

(beat)

She said something to me about smoke burns your lungs. She wasn't running from the police, Mulder. She was just trying to find a new place to breathe.

There's a slight pause that isn't awkward, but not comfortable. Scully starts looking at Mulder's chart. A NURSE rushes into the tent carrying a bag of medical equipment and looking incredibly flustered.

NURSE

Agent Scully, you should be restin--

The NURSE stops talking as Scully whips around to face the NURSE and Mulder snaps to attention. No one wants to make the first move. The NURSE is faced with the awkwardness in the triage tent, Scully does not want the conversation to start, and Mulder does not understnd what is going on. The NURSE's eyes flutter between the two of them, deciding that the tension is too unbearable, and seeing the look of "Don't say anything or I'll have you fed to the Flukeman" look in Scully's eyes, walks out of the tent.

MULDER

(curiously)

What's that about?

Scully bites her lip a bit, avoiding Mulder's eyes.

Realization hits him.

MULDER

(urgently)

Scully, you didn't get hurt, did you?

SCULLY

I'm fi--

Scully begins her usual response, but stops herself.

SCULLY

(deliberately)

Eigenmann pushed me down.

Mulder sits up straight, panicked. Scully rushes to calm him down.

SCULLY

(gentlely)

I had a nurse look me over, I'm not injured. Really.

Scully puts a hand on her belly and smiles slightly.

SCULLY

My "roommate" is doing just fine, too.

Mulder lets out a gasp of relief and lets his head hit the pillow behind him.

MULDER

So everything is fine.

Scully's face falls slightly. Mulder looks at her for a minute, trying to remember why she would be hurt. He remembers and reaches out to take her hand.

MULDER

(intently)

Scully, about what I said. You know that wasn't me, right?

Scully lets him grab her hand, but doesn't entirely reciprocate the hand holding just yet, clearly trying to settle something in her mind.

MULDER

(pleading)

Talk to me, please.

(beat)

SCULLY

Do you remember that time at my Mom's?

Mulder looks confused.

SCULLY

(clarifying)

I nearly shot you?

Mulder hangs his head.

MULDER

Of course I do.

SCULLY

Mulder, I was drenched that day in my own fear. Not from things that were real, but things that I couldn't even admit to myself...

(beat)

I thought if I spoke them, they'd become real.

Scully moves to sit on the side of Mulder's bed.

SCULLY

I've been dealing with that moment for so long, worried about how to move forward. The things that I said, how I was going to move beyond them. How I could look at my reflection the next day and not see the scared woman drowning in paranoia.

(beat)

My cancer, Diana, your disappearance, William. Mulder, all those times I was terrified, and as I closed my eyes at night I would hear the sound of the embers crackling. If I opened myself up to the possibilities of talking about them, I would be engulfed and lost. I buried those fears so deep in my well of emotions that even when these things had passed, I still could see that light from the coals.

MULDER

And so you left them there.

SCULLY

And so I did.

Scully finally meets Mulder's eyes.

SCULLY

End of the day, fears spoken aren't fires that burn us to the ground-- they're just smoke. They'll blow away, and we'll be able to breath clear again.

She leans forward and puts her head on Mulder's chest.

SCULLY

I'd rather be in the ash that's left than not with you at all.

FADE TO BLACK

END OF ACT FOUR

THE END

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