SUMMARY: Mulder performs; Scully confesses all.

DISCLAIMER: The X-Files and its characters are the property of Fox Television and 1013 Productions and are used without permission. "(I Want To Be) Seduced," lyrics and music by Gary Tigerman, 1978, used without permission.

THANK YOU to MaybeAmanda for beta reading, among other things. This story is for her.

NOTE: Visit this wonderful site

 http://www.geocities.com/BourbonStreet/Delta/5253/midis.html

and scroll down to "Ragtime Flavored Songs." Songs are listed alphabetically, so find "Seduced" and sing along with Mulder! But be warned---it's a catchy song, and if you sing it around the house (or office) too often, you might just find yourself ... seduced.

 

"Good working with you again, Mulder," John Shields, the acting director of VICAP said loudly, trying to make himself heard over the sound of the piano and three guys who were singing along drunkenly to "My Blue Heaven." Shields extended his hand to Mulder. "You and your partner were a big help on the case. He nodded toward Skinner who was standing nearby talking to another agent. "I've told A.D. Skinner how much I appreciate him lending you out on this one. " He looked at Mulder. "I'm going to be taking off now. Just wanted to congratulate you on your work. And enjoy your birthday, Mulder."

Mulder nodded and shook Shields' hand. "Thank you, sir. I will."

His birthday was usually a solitary affair with only Scully remembering the day, but this birthday was different: they had just finished working on a high- profile case with VICAP, and to celebrate its successful conclusion, he and Scully and the eight agents they'd worked with had all gone out for a drink. And Scully had called the Gunmen, and they had dropped whatever they'd been doing--not much, probably, Mulder thought--and Byers, Langly, and Frohike had come down to the bar to help celebrate Mulder's birthday, combining the two occasions.

Where was Scully, anyway?

Mulder glanced around the room and saw her sitting at the bar, seemingly engrossed in a conversation with Special Agent Dennis Shane. Mulder watched them for a couple of minutes, then took a drink of beer and slowly made his way over to the bar, managing to catch the end of their conversation.

"--at least let me buy you dinner, Agent Scully," he heard Shane say.

Scully stood up. "That's not necessary," she smiled at Agent Shane. "I'd be happy to take a look at those autopsy photos for you. Just messenger them over." She turned and looked up at Mulder. "Jesus, Mulder, don't look like that. I'm just going to the ladies' room. I'll be back in plenty of time to buy you a birthday drink."

Mulder and Shane watched Scully head off toward the bathroom, and Mulder sat down on the barstool Scully had just vacated.

Agent Shane looked at Mulder out of the corner of his eye. "Well, I'll say this for your partner, when she shoots you down, she does it in a nice way."

Mulder took a drink of beer. "Shoots you down?" he asked carefully.

"Yeah. Didn't you hear?" Shane took another drink and set the bottle down on the bar. "I asked her out, but...." he shrugged. "No interest there, I guess."

"*That* was asking Scully out?" Mulder gave a short laugh. "Asking her to look at autopsy photos?"

Shane smiled. "I didn't have any autopsy photos, really. That was my ... segue ... into asking her out. Pretty lame, huh?'

"Scully's a scientist, Shane," Mulder replied. "She doesn't pick up on hints."

"So you think I should try the direct approach?"

Mulder turned in his chair until he was facing Shane. Mulder didn't know him well; Shane had been assigned to VICAP only a few months before Mulder had left to start work on the X-Files. Tall and blond, Shane had been the Bureau's new fair-haired boy, and he had advanced quickly, having a reputation for being on the fast track to the top.

Mulder said nothing for a moment, then raised his eyes to Shane. "No, I don't think you should." He fixed the other agent with a cool stare. "I don't think you should try any approach with Scully."

"Oh." Shane looked away. He kept his eyes averted from Mulder and took a drink, then set his beer down on the bar. "Sorry, Mulder. I didn't realize I was stepping on anybody's toes." He looked at Mulder covertly. "I didn't know there was anything going on between you and Scully."

Mulder turned back to his beer, then shrugged.

The two men were silent. Agent Shane caught the bartender's eye and nodded in Mulder's direction. The bartender set another beer in front of Mulder.

"Figured I'd better buy you a birthday drink before I hit the men's room," Shane said as he stood up, laying a twenty down on the bar. "Good seeing you. Hope we can work together again some time."

Mulder nodded.

He started to walk away, then turned back to Mulder. "Mulder?"

Mulder turned in his chair and looked at the other man. "Yeah?"

Agent Shane smiled briefly. "Try the direct approach."

*******************

 It was nearly midnight and the bar had emptied out a little when Mulder stood up and cleared his throat nervously.

"Okay, I've only got a few minutes left of my birthday, and I'd like to do something now that I've never done before," he said, facing the small audience of FBI agents and his friends.

"Something you've never done before?" asked Frohike. "Quiet, everybody! I really want to hear what this could be!"

Everyone laughed, and Mulder stood there smiling, waiting for things to quiet down. "It's a new year for me," he said, "and I've decided I'm going to take some chances in my life, go out on a limb, so to speak." He cleared his throat again. "I've always wanted to do this, but I've never had the guts. So tonight's the night."

All eyes followed Mulder as he walked over to the table where Scully was sitting with Byers and Frohike.

Mulder gazed down at his partner and Scully stared up at him. The room had gone completely quiet; even the other people in the bar were watching, and everyone held their collective breaths as they waited for Mulder to speak.

"I'm gonna sing," he said softly.

There were numerous groans and boos, and Mulder dodged a couple of wadded-up cocktail napkins.

"Christ, Mulder, if there's one thing in this world you can't do, that's sing," Langly said.

"Yeah, Mulder," complained Byers. "Why should we all have to suffer just because it's your birthday?"

Mulder held up his hands in mock surrender. "Just a short song," he said. "Short and sweet. And just one." He looked back at Scully. "Humor me, huh?"

Mulder looked over at the piano player and nodded, and the man began a short introduction, and Mulder, looking back at Scully, took a deep breath and began to sing:

"I want to be se-duced
I want a woman to take me out for din-ner for two; 
Want to see her eyes gettin' mood-y 
Flirtin' with the thought of what flirtin' ought to do. 
Like to be real cool
Let her think a-bout get-tin' little me in bed
As I chat a-bout Mag-na Carta, Puerto Vallarta, 
Somethin' Gandhi said.
 I might de-mur politely, falter slightly, if she tried to fondle my knee
 But I'm rel-a-tively certain I'd compromise if I know me...."

"I want to be se-duced,
 I want a woman to talk to me suggestive-ly
 I want to hear her say she'll be with me tomorrow morn-ing
 Drink-ing hot jasmine tea--"

"--or whatever she drinks, right, Mulder?" Frohike called out.

"I want her to make me laugh, make a point of touch- ing me when she talks Leav-in' all the jealous men in the joint to mum- ble in their beer and gawk--"

"Now who does that sound like, Frohike?" teased Langly.

"--it on-ly hap-pens, when I'm nap-ping, nod-ding in a rev-er-ie 
That I find myself a woman who wouldn't mind se- ducing me...."

People had begun to clap, and Mulder did a passable imitation of a soft-shoe routine, laughing as he moved quickly away from a plump fifty-ish blonde who tried to put a five-dollar bill in his belt. The song was nearly over, and Mulder went for the big finish:

"I know it on-ly ha-ppens, when I'm nap-ping, nod- din' in a rev-er-ie 
That I find myself a wo-man who would'n't mind se- ducin' 
Startin' from the mo-ment that we'd been in-tro- duced
That I ever find a wo-man who wouldn't mind se- ducing me."

Mulder slid to his knees in front of Scully, nearly falling over. "Whoa!" he cried out, and Byers and Frohike jumped up to steady him before he fell over.

Now everyone was laughing and clapping, even Scully, who stood up and helped her partner to his feet.

"Consider yourself seduced, Mulder," Scully smiled as she leaned forward and hugged him, kissing his cheek lightly before she stepping back.

*************************

"That was fun tonight, at the bar, wasn't it?" Mulder said as he finished parking the car in front of Scully's building.

"Yeah, it was," she replied. "You want to come up for some coffee?"

"I wouldn't mind coming up for a drink--it is my birthday, after all," he smiled, forestalling her comment about him already having had enough to drink at the bar.

Scully raised her eyebrows. "The offer was for coffee, Mulder. Take it or leave it."

He sighed. "Okay, I guess I'll take it. Coffee it is."

"I just had the carpets cleaned," she said as she unlocked the door to her apartment and flipped on the light. "So you'll have to take your shoes off."

"Sure," Mulder said, "no problem," as he toed off his shoes by the door.

"Your socks, too, Mulder."

"My socks?"

"Yeah, you'll get lint all over the carpet."

"Okay," he said, rolling his eyes. He took off his socks and put them in his shoes. Scully was such a neat freak sometimes.

Scully looked at him and frowned.

"What is it?" asked Mulder. "I took off my socks. No lint, Scully."

"Your shirt," Scully said. "It looks like I got lipstick on it." She reached up and began unbuttoning it. "I'd better soak this in some hot water before the stain sets."

"Uh ... Scully ... that's okay," he said, catching her hands in his.

Scully raised her eyebrows and looked at him questioningly.

"I mean ...." he trailed off. How could she not know? How could she not know that in his fantasies about Scully undressing him it wasn't because his shirt had a lipstick stain. He loved her. He wanted to make love to her. How direct an approach did he have to take?

"It's okay," he sighed, looking at her. "I'll take care of it when I get home."

Scully stared up at him, and then she shook her head slightly and smiled. "Mulder," she said softly, "you're not going home tonight."

Mulder swallowed. "I'm not?" he said hoarsely.

"No," she said. "Pay attention, Mulder. Because I'm going to ... to...." she hesitated.

"Consider me seduced," he said, and leaned down to kiss her.

***********************************

"God, that was fantastic," Mulder said, his eyes closed, caressing Scully as she lay in his arms.

"Mmm-hmm," she murmured contentedly. "It was." She kissed his chest lightly, then rolled away from him and started to get out of bed.

"No," he protested sleepily, reaching for her. "Stay here."

"I'm just going to the bathroom, Mulder," she said, pushing her hair off her face as she sat on the edge of the bed. "I have to take off my makeup."

He blinked at her. "Will it be scary afterward?"

She smiled. "We'll see, won't we?"

Mulder watched appreciatively as Scully walked naked to the bathroom. She had left the door ajar so he could hear her running water and opening and closing drawers in the sink vanity. He put his arms under his head and closed his eyes, smiling to himself.

"Hey, Scully," he called to her. "Why'd we wait so long to do this?"

"Hmm?" she said, her voice muffled.

"I was just thinking of how amazing things would have been if we had made love earlier in our relationship. Of course, I wouldn't have gotten much work done..."

She opened the door of the bathroom and looked at him as she patted her face dry. "Don't blame me, Mulder. I tried to seduce you, but you never picked up on my hint."

He snorted. "When did you ever try to seduce me, Scully?" He shifted in the bed. "Now *that* I would have remembered."

"Right from the beginning, Mulder. Our first case." She closed the bathroom door slightly and he could hear water running in the sink again.

"Give me a break," he laughed as he put his arms over his head and stretched.

"Oh, yeah, I did," Scully replied. "On our very first case. In Oregon."

He reached out and grabbed Scully's pillow, placing it on top of his own, and then inched up and propped himself against the headboard of her bed. "When was that? During that nine minutes of missing time?" he teased.

"At the motel," she called out. "That first night."

"Right."

She opened the bathroom door a little wider. "Don't you remember, Mulder? I came to your room that night, wearing my bathrobe and lingerie and absolutely nothing else. I stood there in the candlelight and took off my robe ... you knelt down ... I threw my arms around you and pressed myself against your chest ... any of this coming back to you?"

"Jesus, Scully," Mulder said, "even I, smitten as I was, would have been pushing it to think that you were coming on to me when you simply asked me to check out your mosquito bites."

"Oh, Mulder," she laughed. "You're not the brightest star in the galaxy, are you?"

"What? What is it? What do you mean?" he smiled, frowning slightly, not understanding the joke.

She opened the bathroom door to look at him. She was holding her toothbrush in one hand, getting ready to brush her teeth. Scully smiled seductively over her toothbrush. God, even her toothbrush was sexy, thought Mulder. "There's an interesting thing about mosquito bites, Mulder."

"What's that?" he asked, sitting up in bed.

Scully paused, looking extremely amused, then raised her eyebrows at him. "They itch."

"They itch?"

"Yeah, Mulder, they itch." She started to laugh again, then turned away from him, shutting the bathroom door completely.

They itch? Mulder's mouth fell open and he sank back on the pillows again.

"Scully ... you mean to tell me ... you mean to tell me...." he spluttered. He got out of bed quickly and went to the bathroom door. "Scully? You mean to tell me that you knew that you knew all along that those bumps were mosquito bites because they itched--that you knew all along that they weren't marks from some alien experiment? Scully?" He knocked on the door. "No way. You did not know that those bumps were just mosquito bites. You didn't. Did you, Scully?"

She opened the door slowly and looked up at him. "You'll never know, will you, Mulder?" she teased.

He grabbed her and pulled her against him. "I've wanted you for six long years--long, long years--and now you're pretending that I could have had you on night number one? You're just trying to get back at me for all the years that I wouldn't let you drive, aren't you?"

Scully put her hands around his neck and pulled him down to her, kissing him passionately until Mulder felt breathless, and then she released him.

"Mulder," she said, "I've *always* been in the driver's seat." She looked into his eyes and kissed him again. "And I always will be." She headed back for the bathroom. "Now get back in that bed. Because as soon as I finish brushing my teeth I'm going to seduce you again."

Mulder blinked.

"It only happens, when I'm nap-ping, nod-ding in a rev-er-ie 
That I find myself a wo-man who would-n't mind se- ducing 
Starting from the moment that we'd been intro- duced
 That I find myself a wo-man who would-n't mind se- ducing me...."

 


Thank you for reading.

pjtdjt@stellarnet.com


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