TITLE:  Needing a Friend
AUTHOR:  Tracy Aiken
E-MAIL:  teanc@mindspring.com
SPOILERS:  Through Season 6 to be safe.
ARCHIVE:  Already sent to Gossamer, anywhere
else, just let me know.
SUMMARY: Scully needs a friend and finds three
unexpected ones.
DISCLAIMER:  These characters belong to Fox, and
1013 Productions.  No money is being made on
this.  Please don't sue.  No infringement
AUTHOR'S NOTES: A big thank you to my friend and
beta reader and encourager, Dominiqua.  This
story wouldn't have been possible without her
encouragement - thank you - you're the best!

On his way to the Gunman's office Mulder began
wondering what was going on with Scully and why she
was at the Lone Gunman's office.  The next thing he
knew he was standing at the door of the Long Gunman,

When the door opened, Frohicke was standing there
staring at him.

"What's going on," Mulder demanded.

"Keep your voice down and come in here," he said and
walked into the office.  "Sit," he said motioning to
the couch.

Frohicke was pacing back and forth in front of Mulder.

"What's wrong?"

"Maybe it's you, maybe not, but you have the power to
fix the problem.  She feels alone, and she thinks that
she doesn't have any friends.  Now we both know what
this crusade has cost her," Frohicke said.

Mulder flinched at his last statement.  "You, of all
people, don't have to tell me what she's lost."

"Why not me, maybe I'm the only one with the balls to
tell you how things are?"

"What makes you, Frohicke, think you know how things
are," Mulder said, jumping up, leaning down into
Frohicke's face, with his hands on his hips.

"I listen to her."

"I listen," Mulder said defensively.

"You may hear her, but you don't actually listen to
what she's saying.  Why else would she be here and not
at your apartment?"

He could see Mulder recoil.  "Mulder, I'm not trying
to be an asshole, I want you to realize that you don't
really know that woman in there, you may know the
Special Agent, but deep down, you don't know her, what
makes her sad, or happy.  She wants to give you that
opportunity, but you don't seem to want to take
advantage of her offer, and I don't know why."

Scully was standing in the doorway and said, in
response to Mulder's outburst, "I'm not sure you do


"Frohicke, can you excuse us, please."

Mulder now was the one pacing.  Scully came into the
room and sat on the couch.  "Mulder, come here," she
said patting the cushion next to her.  When he didn't
move, she added, "please."

Finally, he came to sit next to her.

"I'm not saying anything to hurt you, Mulder.  It's
just sometimes I get the feeling that I'm the last
person you want to see or talk to.  That makes me feel
like you don't want me around.  That's why I didn't
come to see you tonight.  I didn't know if you'd want
to see me."

"Scully, we really do need to go to a communication
seminar," he said with a smirk.

"Don't joke about this, Mulder.  God, why can't you
just be serious for once and stop playing around," she
said and then got up and went to stand in front of a
window, staring out.

Mulder was dumbfounded.  "Scully, I'm sorry."

She didn't respond to him, which made him worry even
more.  When he heard her sniffle he immediately was at
her side.  He tried to take her into his arms, but she
pulled away.  "Come on, Scully, I said I was sorry."

"Sometimes that's not enough."

"Will you give me another chance, please?"

"I'll always give you another chance, Mulder.  That's
the difference between you and me."

"I don't understand, Scully, what does that mean?"

"Forget it, Mulder.  I'm going home," she said and
started walking back toward the living area.

"No," he said and grabbed her arm to stop her, "tell

"I've said this before, Mulder, not everything is
about you."

"Scully, please, I want to talk to you."

"Not right now, Mulder.  We'll talk tomorrow."

"No.  We're going to talk now.  I don't care if it's
here, your place or mine, but we're going to talk,
really talk."

"I'm going home, if you want to come by, that's your
choice," she said and walked into the kitchen area.

Byers, Langley and Frohicke were all waiting in the
kitchen.  "Guys, thank you for sharing your dinner
with me and for allowing me to hang out with you."

"You're welcome, Scully.  Please remember you are
always welcome here," Byers said.

"Anything you need, Scully, you know where we are,"
Frohicke said.

"Anything," Langley added.

Mulder was standing in the doorway watching their
interaction with Scully.  She hugged each of them,
grabbed her coat and walked out.  Mulder was left
standing in the doorway, being stared at by all three
of them.

"What," he exclaimed?

"Just how much of an asshole are you, Mulder" Byers

"She's just upset, it's nothing to worry about."

"That's the problem," Frohicke said.  "You should be
worried about her, or at least concerned.  You're
acting like you see her cry everyday.  Do you even
know what it takes for her to cry  and this time
you're the cause of her tears?"

"I will fix this, you'll see," Mulder said.

"You don't understand," Langley said.

"Tell me what I don't understand."

"Mulder, you are her best friend, but she doesn't feel
secure enough in your personal relationship to even
talk to you.  You, and we, most of the time, only get
to see the professional side of her, but there's
another side to her, and from what little we've seen,
it's even more incredible than her professional side,"
Langley said.

"Do you know her favorite video game," Byers' asked,
"or do you even know that she likes video games?"

"Scully, likes video games?"

"That's the point, Mulder, we knew that, we've even
played some with her, she's really good."

"But you know, well, maybe you don't, but we know
she'd much rather be with you.  You've just got to get
your act together.  If you don't want to lose her,
personally, you'll get your shit together, Mulder,"
Frohicke said.

Mulder didn't know how to react to what they were
saying.  Were they correct?  Did he really not know
his partner of seven years?  Sure, he knew she was
ranked as an expert on the shooting range, and that
she carried at least three replacement blades for her
scalpel, but did he know her favorite color?  Or what
her favorite ice cream flavor was? Or what her
favorite music group was?  He had a lot to learn about
her, and the only obstacle was Scully herself.  Would
she let him get to know her, really know her?  The
only way to find out was to try.

"Thank you for being here for her tonight," Mulder
said getting up and walked out their door.

On his way to the car, he pulled out his cell phone
and hit speed dial 2, Scully's home number.  He let it
ring several times, but she didn't pick up, only the
answering machine answered after five rings.  He,
next, tried her cell phone; speed dial 1, there was no
answer there, either.  She was avoiding him.

He knew if he let this go until tomorrow, her walls
would be back in place.  He needed to talk to her now,
really talk to her.  No jokes, no kidding around, just
the two of them talking, like friends, best friends. 

Finally, he decided to go to her apartment.

Scully, in the meantime, had indeed gone home, changed
into her favorite sweats and an oversized tee shirt. 
After changing, she went into her kitchen and found a
pint of New York Super Fudge Chocolate Brownie.  She
grabbed a spoon and went into the living room, where
she grabbed the remote and turned on the Cartoon
Network.  She needed something to make her smile and
maybe, just maybe a Scooby Doo marathon would work.

About an hour later she heard a very soft knock on her
door.  She knew it was Mulder.  Actually, he surprised
her by waiting an hour before knocking on her door.

She sat her ice cream down next to the medical journal
she had been flipping through and walked to the door. 
Very slowly she opened the door to see Mulder standing
there, looking as if he really had lost his best