|THE POOH FILES
by Christina Simmons & Amanda Wilde
a loving tribute to two of our favourite silly old bears:
Pooh and Mulder
In Which Special Agents Mulder and Scully make a new friend, learn a game, hunt for heffalumps and woozles, and consider going on an Expotition.
In Which We Meet Special Agents Fox Mulder and Dana Scully, a Mighty Morphin' Alien Bounty Hunter, and a Bear of Very Little Brain, But No Bees
Here is Special Agent Fox Mulder, coming down stairs now, bump, bump, bump, on the back of his head, right behind the Mighty Morphin' Alien Bounty Hunter. It is, as far as he knows, the only way of coming downstairs, just as dropping your cell phone is the only way of really using that. Sometimes he feels there really is another way, if only he could stop bumping for a moment and think of it. But, what with the Thorazine and Haladol which seem to always be coursing through his system, he feels that perhaps there isn't. Anyhow, here he is at the bottom, bloody, battered, bruised, and ready for the paramedics.
The Mighty Morphin' Alien Bounty Hunter, after an admonitory glance at Mulder, decides that dragging an agent of the federal government about all day is really Not Worth the Effort, drops him in a vaguely Mulder-shaped heap, and vanishes. Mulder is left all alone, conveniently just outside the door of an office in the depths of the Hoover Building basement, where he lives under the name of "The FBI's Most Unwanted."
This does not mean, of course, that the sign is taped above his door, and he lives under it. Mulder's partner took it down long ago. And, with no Mighty Morphin' Alien Bounty Hunter to be seen, this is the cue Mulder's partner has been waiting for - and here is Special Agent Dana Scully, coming around the corner now, with her gun and badge exactly where they ought to be, unlike her hapless partner, who has lost his some time ago (along with his dropped cell phone).
Scully, of course, never loses her gun or badge, or drops her cell phone, but she often loses her partner, and has grown quite accustomed to recovering him bloody, battered, bruised, and ready for the paramedics. Sometimes she feels that there really must be another way of going about it, but Mulder is Mulder, after all, so perhaps there isn't after all. So here we are, Mulder and Scully, together again - ready to embark on another Adventure.
"It was aliens, Scully..." Mulder is saying, as Scully collects Mulder's cell phone, badge, and gun, picks him up, dusts him off, and gives him one of Those Looks, which of course makes Mulder all the more determined. "It was! The Truth Is Out There..."
"Mulder, I think you hit your head a bit too hard..."
"After four years of working together, how can you say that? I should have known... Trust No One... Deny Everything... It was aliens, I tell you..."
"I'm not saying anything about the aliens, Mulder."
"You're talking in capitals. That's a bit strange, even for you."
"I do it quite regularly..." said a growly voice. "It really is Quite Convenient for Conversing, if you Understand What I Mean..."
Scully glances down, and for the first time notices a small tan bear watching her with an air of quiet puzzlement. "Mulder... what's with the teddy bear?"
"That's not a teddy bear, Scully." says Mulder, with great dignity. "That's Winnie-ther-Pooh."
"An Oxford-educated psychologist says 'ther?' Mulder, sit down for a minute. How many fingers am I holding up?"
"Two, plus a thumb. Scully, don't you know what 'ther' means?"
"Ah... yes, of course I do." says Scully, and we hope you do, too, because that is all the explanation you are likely to get. It is, after all, the X Files. And, at any rate, here we are, at the end of the Introduction. And this is where we leave our agents, and their new ursine friend... for now.
In Which Mulder and Scully Divine Creative Means of Surveillance With Help From a Balloon... All The While Being Themselves Surveilled By A Certain Cigarette Smoking Man and Company
Eeyore, the old grey donkey, watched the man with the nondescript grey suit light up a Morley cigarette and switch on a very subtle wiretapping device.
"Pathetic..." said Eeyore. "That's what it is. Pathetic. Not that I'm complaining, but There It Is."
The man in the suit raised his eyebrows, but said nothing... only listened. Somewhere at the other end of the wiretap, a door clicked shut.
"Scully, um... could you just take that umbrella there, come with me, and walk back and forth outside for a bit, saying something along the lines of 'Tut tut, it looks like rain?'"
"Mulder, you're tracking mud all over the place."
"It's not mud. I'm a little black raincloud. I'm undercover, Scully."
"I'm almost afraid to ask..."
"I'm just going to hang onto this weather balloon here and drift over a little old maximum security fence into a secret government compound... then we'll have all the evidence we need. What do you say?" There were sounds of shuffling. "There. What do I look like?"
"And the answer, 'a complete lunatic' would be the wrong response?"
"Work with me here, Scully."
A sigh, as of One Rapidly Tiring of This Charade, and Scully spoke up again. "You look," she said. "Like a grown man who's rolled in a mud wallow and then gone to the carnival."
"Not -" said Mulder anxiously. "- like a small black cloud in a blue sky? The bear said it would work. Maybe from up there it'll look different. You Never Can Tell."
"Mulder, trust me - it's not going to work."
"You heard me - it's not going to work. The compound in question is swarming with men with guns, and you never can tell with NSA agents... and I am NOT picking prickles out of your nose again. You fell into a gorse bush the last time."
"I don't remember that part. I *do* remember that you shot me."
"Mulder... you told me to shoot you."
"I told you to shoot the balloon. I wanted to come down."
"So I missed."
"Well, you didn't exactly miss... but you missed the BALLOON."
"You're talking in capitals again. And, if you recall, I got it the second time. And *you* fell into a gorse bush. Prickles everywhere. It took me the better part of a week to get them all out."
The Cigarette-Smoking Man took another long drag, then exhaled, very much amused. Eeyore, the old grey donkey, sat and watched.
"Pathetic." he said again.
"I'd have to agree..." said the CSM. He stubbed out the cigarette and stumped out the door. Eeyore sighed, and stared down at the still-smoking ashtray. Somehow, he had the distinct feeling that the man had misinterpreted him entirely, Not That It Mattered Anyhow. This surveillance business. Wiretaps and what-not. Silly stuff. Nothing in it.
In Which Mulder Decides to Discover the North Pole (again) But Avoid the Submarines and Alien Bounty Hunters
"Scully, how would you feel about an expotition?" said Mulder, bustling into the office and starting to pull on his galoshes.
"What?" Scully glanced up from the computer, not really startled, and followed her partner with her eyes as he tugged and strained.
"An expotition." said Mulder. "Would you mind leaning against me? I keep pulling so hard that I fall over..."
Scully regarded her partner patiently, then walked around behind him so that he might brace his back against her as he tugged. "You mean expedition?"
"No." said Mulder, leaning into the pull, as Scully dug her heels in. "Expotition. It's got an "x" in it. Just like the X Files."
Scully, who was by now Getting Used To This, sighed and Nodded Knowingly. "Ah. . ."
Mulder pulled and pulled, and finally stood up, looking quite pleased with himself. At least his galoshes were on now.
"There. All ready for Adventure and Excitement. Come on, Scully... live a little. We'll gather up all of our Friends and Relations and..." Scully cut him off.
"Mulder, I really wish you'd stop doing that."
"Doing what, Scully?"
"Talking in capitals. It's... unsettling."
"I can't help it, Scully. It's just One Of Those Things. Oops. Anyhow, I want to discover the North Pole." Mulder said, stumping about, rummaging for maps and mittens. Scully sighed again, looking at the stacks of paperwork piling up on her partner's desk.
"It's been done, Mulder."
"Not by me..."
"Mulder, after that little adventure with the bounty hunter and the retrovirus and the submarine and..." But Mulder (as per usual) was not quite listening, for he had composed a Fine Hum all his own while he was putting on his boots, and felt it Quite Suitable To The Occasion.
"Sing Ho! for the life of a Special agent! Sing Ho! for the life of a me!"
Scully sighed, and rested her head in her hands. "Where are the transfer request forms, Mulder?"
In Which Mulder and the Lone Gunmen Teach Scully a New Game,
and Frohike Tests the Currents
Nobody, of course, is Quite Certain whether it was Pooh who taught the game to Mulder, or Mulder who taught the game to Pooh. It was, however, Mulder who taught the game to the Lone Gunmen, and tried, without much success, to teach it to Scully. They had come to a bridge over one of the many tributaries feeding into the Potomac on a rather chilly winter day, and Scully was looking Decidedly Unimpressed as her partner and his cronies took turns dropping sticks into the current below.
"It's Muldersticks, Scully. Come on. Try it. It's fun."
"You really know how to show a girl a good time. Maybe on the next sub-zero day, pre- windchill. It's snowing." Scully huddled into her coat, at watched as Byers, Langly, and Mulder dangled sticks over the edge of the bridge. When Mulder said "GO!" they dropped their sticks into the river below, and then hurried across to the other side of the bridge to see whose stick would come out first. Scully watched them, thinking, and counted once... one, two, three. Then she counted again. She counted one more time, just to be sure, but by then she was certain that something was Definitely Amiss.
"Mulder... where's Frohike?"
"Frohike? He was here a minute ago."
"I think my stick is stuck." said Byers, hanging over the edge of the railing. "Mulder, is your stick stuck? I think my stick's stuck."
"Mulder..." said Scully again, but Mulder's attention was focused on Something More Important.
"Look!" squeaked Langly, hopping up and down in Great Excitement. "My stick isn't stuck! My stick is winning! My stick is winning! Come on, stick! There it is - my stick, my big gray stick.... ! Oh. No, it's not."
Scully peered over the edge of the bridge. It was, of course, exactly as she'd feared. "Frohike, what are you doing down there?"
"Ah, the ubiquitous Agent Scully. I am, as it were, testing the water currents. Slowly rotating midstream."
"I can see that. Frohike, you're going to go into hypothermic shock... that water is freezing..."
"How'd you get in there, Frohike?" called Langly, still looking for his stick.
"I was PUSHED!"
"Was it a single pusher, or was there more than one person involved?"
"We can say it was one, even if it wasn't, and use that Krycek guy as a patsy..." suggested Byers. "We don't even need a smoking gun."
"Been there, done that." said Krycek, who happened to be crossing the bridge at that moment. "I didn't push him. I just happened to be behind him, and I coughed. Das vidanya."
"Mulder, we have to get him out of there before he freezes..." Scully said, as Frohike continued to drift.
"He's going ROUND and ROUND!" said Langly, very much impressed.
"Well, I suppose we could all drop rocks in the water and HOOSH him to shore..." said Mulder dubiously.
Scully looked at her partner. "Hoosh?"
"That's what I said, Scully..."
"Hoosh. Mulder, please explain the scientific nature of 'hooshing.' Mulder..." But Mulder, having Made Up His Mind, was already implementing his plan. "Mulder, put down the rock... Mulder, that's really not..."
There was a loud SPLASH, and Frohike disappeared from sight.
Mulder winced. "Sorry, Frohike..."
Scully sighed, picked up Mulder's bear from the side of the bridge, tucked it under one arm, and started for the car without a backwards glance.
In Which Mulder and Scully Encounter Creatures of Possibly Hostile Intent
Skinner looked at the latest case file, then looked at the ceiling, then looked at the file again, and made considering noises, and thinking noises, and what-have-we-got-here noises, and then said decidedly,
"Assistant Directors DON'T like X Files!"
"Oh." said Mulder, sitting up straight in his chair and trying to sound Sad and Regretful.
"I thought they liked everything." said Pooh, beside him. "Oh bother. That's Tiggers, and hunny."
Scully made a Small Noise of Great Discomfort, such as one makes when trying to Refrain From Hitting One's Partner, particularly in front of Assistant Directors of Possibly Hostile Intent, and looked directly ahead.
"They like everything but X Files." said Skinner.
In Which Mulder Specifically Encounters an Alien of Hostile Intent
"Mulder, what are you staring at?" Scully came into her dining room, where her partner, who almost never turned up at her apartment without a reason, was watching her table with a most peculiar expression on his face.
"There's something climbing up your table, Scully. Don't move." And with one tremendous leap, Mulder jumped at the end of the tablecloth, pulled it to the ground, wrapped himself up in it three times, rolled to the other end of the room, dropped his gun and badge, and, after a terrible struggle, got his head into the daylight again and said cheerfully: "Got it! Good news, Scully... it's not an alien."
"It's my tablecloth," said Scully, as she began to unwind Mulder. "It's linen. It's expensive. It WAS ironed. About ten seconds ago."
"In our line of work, Scully, you Never Can Tell... not with dry goods and shapeshifters and such..."
"Mulder, you're certifiable. It's a tablecloth. It's inanimate. There are NO X Files pertaining to table coverings."
"That's because nobody bothered to document them." said Mulder, dusting himself off. "You've got to open your mind to the possibilities, Scully... if it was just a table cloth, why did it try to jump me?"
"Everyone tries to jump you, Mulder."
"You're leaving yourself wide open for that one, Scully..."
"I don't think it DID try to jump you, Mulder." said Scully, ignoring the comment as only one with Much Practice in Selective Deafness can, folding up the tablecloth, and sighing.
"It tried," said Mulder doggedly. "but I was too quick for it."
Scully looked at her partner, then at the small bear, who was watching the proceedings with the sort of puzzled look on his face that could mean that he was either trying to determine why two grown people were attempting to determine the sentience of household dry goods, or trying to spell "Tuesday." At the moment, Scully doubted she could do either. She looked at Mulder again.
"All right, Mulder..." she said. "Sure. Fine. Whatever. Oh, lovely... Look What You've Gone and Done."
"What?" Mulder looked genuinely puzzled.
"You've got me doing it now. Talking In Capitals. Dammit, Mulder... I think I'm going to need to Cause You Great Physical Discomfort in the Very Near Future."
"Ah. Right. Scully?"
"What now, Mulder?"
"Would this be the wrong time to tell you that I'm suddenly Very Turned On?"
Scully closed her eyes. It was stretching out to be a very, very long day.
In Which We Say Goodbye
Mulder and Scully sat at the edge of the Potomac, watching the nighttime lights of the capitol district. Scully always enjoyed these times, with no particular case in sight, at least for now, when it was peaceful and quiet, and they had time to think... though she really did wish Mulder had left that bear of his at home. Still, that bear, like her partner, was growing on her.
Mulder glanced across at Scully. "Scully?"
"Promise me you won't ever forget me... not even when you're a hundred."
Despite the fact that the request was essentially a non-sequitur, Scully was touched.
"Mulder, that's very sweet, but scientifically speaking..."
Mulder interrupted her. "Don't go all scientific on me, Scully. This is the Sweet and Sentimental Ending Part of the Story. It keeps the 'shippers happy. Promise."
Scully smiled. She was, after all, very fond of her partner. Even when he talked in capitals. "Silly old Mulder. I was going to say, scientifically speaking, I think you've left a mark on my subconscious. It would be impossible."
"Not even when you're a hundred?"
"Not even when I'm a hundred. And after that." They were quiet for a long while. "Even though, if you take these things seriously, that odd little insurance salesman did say I'd never die, so we may need to re-evaluate after a few centuries."
Mulder grinned. "I knew I liked you for a reason, Scully. In fact, I'd have to say that I think you're okay... really."
"Everyone is, really." said a growly voice. "Besides... it's so much friendlier with two."
Scully smiled, then sidled closer, grasped Mulder's hand, and squeezed. Mulder looked at his partner, a bit surprised.
"What was that for?"
"Nothing..." said Scully. "I just wanted to be sure of you."
They sat that way for a long moment, silent, watching the river.
"Can I hug your bear for a second?"
"Are you coming on to me, Scully?"
"Mulder, you really ARE an Agent of Very Little Brain."
|"If anybody wants to
clap," said Eeyore when he had read this, "now
is the time to do it." They all clapped. "Thank
you," said Eeyore. "Unexpected and gratifying,
if a little lacking in Smack."
- A.A. Milne, "The House at Pooh Corner