TITLE: Median Dreams
DATE COMPLETED: November 16, 1999
SUMMARY: Only between two extremes can the truth be found.
SPOILERS: Immediate continuation of Amor Fati. And I mean
immediate, my friends--a direct continuation of the scene
on the beach.
CLASSIFICATION: Vignette, MSR.
DISTRIBUTION: OK to forward to ATXC newsgroup, to Gossamer
and to Xemplary. Please ask permission before archiving
anywhere else. If you already have one of my stories,
permission is granted, but still let me know you are
grabbing this one as well.
DISCLAIMER: FOX and CC and 1013 and not mine, yadda yadda.
AUTHOR'S NOTES: Complete notes at the end.
FEEDBACK: Mail comments to email@example.com.
The sand poured through his fingers, each grain dropping gently
onto those which had fallen before. It was amazing how the
simple motion mesmerized him, reaching out to capture his
thoughts and hold them at bay. He knew if the world were to
collapse around him right now, he would barely even perceive it.
Right now, only the sand mattered. So many textures, so much
power within such simplicity. Too dry, it became a coarse
irritant, insinuating itself everywhere as it refused to be swept
away. Too wet, it became a relentless abrasive, grinding away
every surface with a calm nonchalance.
But somewhere in the middle, somewhere between the
windswept grains and the liquid slurry, it became something
powerful. Beneath skilled hands, it became more than its
elements, more than bits of rock and water.
It became the solid representation of liquid thought. As the mind
flowed from one image to another, one vision to the next, the
hands molded those images into reality. A castle envisioned
became a castle built, its sand fortresses rising to the sky
A movement at his side interrupted his thoughts. The boy had
moved closer to him, sitting cross-legged and staring out over the
Mulder watched the boy as the boy watched the ocean. Unlike
other boys of six or seven, he didn't fidget--he didn't twitch at his
clothing or glance nervously around him. His gaze remained
steady, his hands resting on his knees as the light wind whispered
through his hair.
"What do you see out there?" Mulder said after a minute. The
boy seemed almost in a trance, and yet he answered nearly
immediately, without hesitation.
"What is it that *you* see?" the boy asked in reply. Such a calm
voice for one so young, Mulder thought. Yet the signs of youth
were clearly there. A slight lisp, a slight slurring of the
consonants to the vowels, the tone lilting in a register higher than
would be found in years to come.
"I see the ocean," Mulder answered as he glanced over the
surface of the water. "A few seagulls, some rocks, a lot of water."
He felt he was supposed to give a different answer, but it eluded
"I see life itself," the boy said simply. "The past, the present, the
future--it is all right there. From here, you can see anything that
you wish to see." The boy turned his head to face Mulder. As he
locked his gaze with the boy's, he felt a slight shock run through
His own eyes stared back at him. Younger and more innocent,
certainly, but still his own. What the hell is happening to me, he
"Wh- what... what do you mean? I don't understand. Help me
understand," Mulder managed, his voice barely audible.
"You must learn to look with more than your eyes. Close them
and look again."
"I can't do that, how will I-?"
"Your mind has already seen the world before it. It does not need
your eyes... it needs only your vision."
"Close your eyes and look again."
Mulder slowly closed his eyes, unsure if the motion were truly
being made of his own volition or by the power of the boy in
front of him. At first he saw nothing but blackness. Soon, though,
an image began to form--as if from a fog, the ocean view
coalesced in his mind.
He watched as the water lapped slowly at the beach, beating a
gentle rhythm across the beach for as far as his eye could see.
Each wave rolled quietly onto the shore, tendrils of water sliding
over the sand as though alive. As he searched further out, though,
the ocean became more uncertain. Details easily distinguished at
the water's edge became more jumbled, finally fading to a
uniform gray at the horizon.
"The water's edge is the past," he heard the boy say. Mulder was
unclear whether the voice originated from outside or from within
in his own mind. "It has already been written. You can look on it
any time you choose, in perfect detail. But why would you wish
to? It is, in essence, a dead thing, unchangeable and frozen.
"The horizon is the future, forever waiting to be created. But the
future is always ahead of us, elusive and intangible. Why seek a
thing which cannot be found?
"It is between the extremes, where the waves begin to meld into
one--it is there that life can exist. Only there, where the influence
of the past meets the freedom of the future, can a person meet his
"Only in the middle can love be found."
Mulder snapped open his eyes. But this time, instead of a young
boy and the ocean before him, he found only the monotone paint
of the hallway outside his apartment. As he struggled to get his
bearings, he heard the signature click of Scully's heels as she
retreated from his door.
He felt his breath catch in his throat as he realized that only a
few heartbeats had passed. Life exists only in the middle, he
remembered--the past is written and the future is beyond our
reach. Only the present is worth living.
And moments ago in this very doorway, he knew the memory of
the past had met the promise of the future and become something
so much more.
"Hey Scully?" he called out, his voice breaking as he stepped out
into the hall.
"Yeah, Mulder," she said quietly. As she turned to face him, he
saw that she was crying freely. The tears flowed steadily across
her cheeks as her eyes locked with his... and saw the same.
Moments passed, each unable to look away from the other,
mesmerized by the intensity and promise of the moment. At
some point, each began moving towards the other...
They met somewhere in the middle.
AUTHOR'S NOTES: This was my first ever attempt at a direct
post-ep fanfic. Usually, I find that I don't have the
time, the desire, or the idea to write post-eps, so I've
never ventured into this arena. With Amor Fati, I found
that I had all three. Or rather, I had the desire and the
idea, and therefore *made* the time, LOL.
I hope I got it right...