Title: Work With Me Here (3/3)
Note: Continuation of 'The Date'
Distribution: Wherever, whenever, it's fine.
Disclaimer: C.C., 1013 Productions, FOX
know what they own; Lislita comes from me.
Work With Me Here
Dulles Airport Expressway
From the van's lumpy bench seat, in back,
Scully reiterates for the third redundant
time, "Look, Langly, just stop, okay?"
In the rearview mirror she detects his
look of naked surprise. "Quit beating
yourself up about it." Through another
yawn, she casts dubious eyes at him and
says, "The anti-theft device was
disabled, Mulder explained because, and I
quote, 'the force of interference that
UFO bombarded us with rendered the
computer-guided systems inoperative."
She decides to ignore his comment about
where their latest so-called alien
encounter was this time, noticing her
cousin giving them both strange looks.
Her eyes take on an expression of whimsy
for her cousin's sake. "The Saturn's
tagged. It'll be located, no matter how
long it takes to. The FBI always recovers
its vehicles. The track record's amazing.
So, to coin a phrase, be cool."
"Cold," Langly says after a moment or so
of deliberation. "Only, the Bureau
shouldn't get its hopes up about seeing
it again in one piece. Even as we speak,
it may already be chopped up, or stripped
clean down to the chassis for parts. I
should know. This old warhorse has come
pretty close to that fate, lots of times."
Lislita turns around in the passenger
seat. Dana's sitting pretty, smack dab
in the center of the springy seat. The
cousin flashes her a tropical smile. Dana
hasn't changed very much, all these years,
her relative considers. Lislita is a lot
more relieved now, than she was when she
and Langly had trooped back to Scully's
in the uncharted wee hours of the morning.
Scully hadn't been as ticked off as he'd
feared about their slinking in with only
two hours separating them from the crack
of dawn. Talk about a race against time.
Langly chances a quick look back. "You
should've heard this star last night,
beltin' 'em out at Ryan's, Scully. She
"That's one of the irresistables about
'Richillo,' Dana," Lislita plugs, a fluid
smile flowing out to him. "He's so vocal
with his praise." Her eyes are pari passu
orbs of recommendation.
"Call me prejudiced. I know what I like."
(Have you told her *all* the things that
you like, on your uncanny list?) Scully
studies the tow-colored back of his tufted
head. His hair, never looking well cared-
for, is the last word in severely-knotted,
this morning. (From the little I know. . .
Mallomars slathered in peanut butter and
marshmallow 'Fluff,' washed down with Tang
he adds root-beer, or whatever soda's
handy, to.) Scully's facial revulsion
reflects itself plainly in the rearview
"Prejudiced," Lislita bats his way,
teasing. "You said to call you--" Scully
is relieved that she isn't being called
"Well, I wasn't the only one." He dares
another quick look around from the lightly-
traveled direct route to the airport to get
a full view of Scully; not just her eyes
and the top portion of her nose in the
rearview mirror. The sun is putting in a
measured appearance from the east, its
dappling rays fingering the Agent's some-
what haggard face. "Ida's in love."
(Behind me, that is.) "There's a job
waiting for her here, if she wants it.
It was so cool. Patrons were crawling
outta the woodwork, tellin' her how good
she was, and, man, she was. How many
times has that happened, huh?"
"'Chulito,' I was okay. Your friend was
desperate for entertainment. If I'd have
sung, 'Twinkle, Twinkle,' she would've
been just as bowled over." Lislita checks
her black thin-strapped wristwatch, and
then peeks up at the brightening sky.
Flying wasn't too bad when there weren't
any dark clouds threatening, and today
there aren't. "'Dios mio,' my voice
shook more times than I like it to."
"Ain't she something'?" Langly's eyes
snap away from Scully to her, and he can't
believe she's being this modest, although
he was treated to a lot of it throughout
last night. "Coulda fooled me. I never
heard a hitch, and I was all ears."
Lislita makes it difficult for Scully to
hear when she says, barely moving her
lips, "Not all. Many times I liked what
you did with. . ." She purses them,
draining them of color, and softly laughs.
"No translation required," Langly remarks,
chuckling softly like a goof, and
imitating her quiet register, "yours
melted in my mouth. Better than M & M's
Scully clears her throat, not liking their
delve into being conspiritorial, nor the
scratchy, gravelly quality her voice has.
There was nothing sexy about the sound of
scouring sandpaper hard at work, despite
Mulder's contrary claims otherwise.
Langly's grip tightens on the steering
wheel, and before he has a meltdown in
front of Scully he quizzes, "Wanna know
how many buses it takes to get back from
the pub to your place, Scully?" Narrowly,
he misses the bumper of an Avis Rental
shuttle bus, roughly less than two yards
ahead of them.
Lislita looks askance at him, smiling,
as she pats the seatbelt that jerked
her back into place. Langly balloons
his cheeks, then noisily deflates them.
"Sorry 'bout that," he assures his
roughed-up passengers. "Jerks pullin'
out like that shouldn't be drivin'."
Scully checks her wristwatch, thinking
about many of the nailbiting stunts
Mulder has pulled while behind the
wheel. "Why didn't you catch a cab?"
Langly shakes his head adamantly, so
sure of himself. "It wasn't happenin'.
Nobody wanted to stop. Who knows why?"
Scully considers why, grimacing at the
back of his head, which he snags in the
rearview mirror for a third time, and he
smirks, feeding off her customary look
of being put-upon. "Anyway, we were
lucky to make the right connections.
I'm just glad we got back when we did."
"I love adventures," Lislita insists, no
hint of reservation, and smacks him with
the widest of grins.
Langly sighs heavily, wishing oh, so very
hard that she wasn't leaving today.
The middle of February was a long, iffy
way off. Too much time for him to miss
feeling everything wonderful about her.
Who knew if he'd even be able to get away,
if Y2K made everything go bust? Seeing
her again might not be possible for ages.
(Something is definitely in the air.)
Scully eyes them cagily, noting their
furtive nuances. (It's more than just
her finding him interesting. . .and I've
never seen nor heard him be more civil.)
She mandates that she won't label it
love. . .but, what if it is? But *this*
fast? What the heck could she do if
that's how they felt about each other?
(The heart wants what it wants.) How true
that is, she meditates.
Never more civil, and almost. . .Scully is
reluctant to admit it but, she concedes.
(Mannered.) He'd arrived with the van,
timed to the split second that they were
leaving from her building, to her complete
surprise, but Lislita had known what his
intentions were, as she told Scully that
he wanted to drive her to the airport.
How he'd managed to procure the vehicle,
this time around, and without the other
Gunmen hitching along for the ride, he
"Trying real hard not to sound like a
spoilsport here," Langly says. Then,
adding serious leverage, he gives Lislita
a visual tweak. "We could've done without
the car disappearing." Playfully, she
winks back at him and he returns it.
"Maybe it was abducted. . ."
"*Not* funny, Langly," Scully admonishes,
trying hard not to sound as if she's
sparing with Mulder, the way she had the
other day outside of Skinner's office in
full earshot of Kimberly who'd made
believe she'd had her mind fully on her
transcription. Scully couldn't help
thinking sometimes that Mulder liked
having a willing audience when they really
got a good disagreement going.
"That's the second mention of things
alien-related." Lislita piles her
weighty hair atop her head, opens her
hand acting as a crimp and lets her long
locks tumble free. "Why's it such a hot
topic?" Silence saturates the vagabondic
VW micro-bus. Vastly intrigued, she
shoots her eyes loaded with inquiry from
the one tight-lipped soul to the other.
"Uh--hey, here's your terminal," Langly
loudly announces, seeing the bemused
expression of relief swamp Scully's face
in the rearview mirror, and he swings
into an ample space at curbside. A skycap
who looks to be on his break, comes alive,
stepping up to the van's passenger side.
"Look, I'll plant my good-byes here, Lisa.
'Bye." He reaches over, and makes a long-
range grab for Lislita who isn't happy
"But--" she gushes, "I thought--"
Langly frowns, shaking his head, rearing
back from her a little, and inadvertantly
blows the horn, startling the skycap and
a group of six kids who are engaged in a
pushing and shoving match by the van's
right bumper. "Problem?"
"I want you to come with me to the gate."
Her uneasy driver shakes his blond mane
animatedly. "Can't go all the way there.
I'm not ticketed--and besides, by the
time I go park, and hustle to catch up
with you, there you go, on your way."
His left hand pantomines her jet taking
"Maybe Dana can stay with the van. . ."
Lislita swivels around and pleads her
cause. "Would you, Day?"
Langly ticks the countdown to the Agent's
turning that down in his mind. He keeps
his eyes locked on the beautiful girl he
hopes he won't be seeing for the last
time. "Next time, huh?"
(Next time? He's got it all planned.)
Scully comes forward on the seat.
"No, now. . ." Lislita pouts every bit
as masterfully as Scully does who is
renowned Bureau-wide for her versatile
facial gymnastics. "I don't want to
leave you like this."
"Check. I know the feeling." Langly
shrugs, and pragmatically replies, "I hear
that, but, Scully's the one who should be
there with you. Not me. She's *family*."
"I know that," Lislita says, still pouting.
"So, c'mon you've got a lotta hustling to
do. You still haveta check-in, and bolt
to the gate in say, fifteen minutes or so.
Don't wanna miss your flight now, do ya?"
"No, I don't," she answers sullenly, but
doesn't move a muscle. "But I want you
"Unreal!" Langly's blank stare never
wavers as his jaw locks. (Man, these
Scully babes. They're tough. A
mule cemented in quicksand would be
snappier.) And as another two minutes
are lost to history, he has no idea
what's supposed to 'go down' next.
Whatever does, he's sure it'll make him
appear sorrier, the way he feels.
"Hey, I've got an idea," Scully inter-
venes between the soon to be separated
couple, with this sudden thorn between
them. For the first time this morning,
she smiles. (No--I *don't* need to be
reminded. Ubergeek and my cousin? Byers
and Lita, well, maybe, but. . .Langly?
God, forgive me, but *that's* beyond the
bounds of probability. I'll give it more
thought later, in my bubble bath.)
"Guys, how about this? I'll stay with
the VW." Langly switches around in his
seat in a flash, preparing to re-open his
mouth in protest. "It's okay, Langly.
You go with Lita. Get her all squared
away, then get her on her way. *I'll*
say my good-byes here."
"But, Scully. . ."
"But nothing, Langly. Just do it."
"Thanks, Dana, big-time." Lislita knees
her way out of the front seat, and flings
herself at her cousin, hugging Scully for
all she's worth. Through the shower of
kisses, the traveler effuses, "I love you
*so* much, 'primita.'"
"That goes double for me, Cuz."
"Are you sure, Scully?" Langly fires at
the tangle of familial affection.
"Yeah, I'm sure. Now--*move*!"
A gleam ignites Langly's lens-fronted
eyes. "If you're carryin' your badge,
you could flash it so they won't hassle
ya about leaving the van unattended.
Then we could all go."
Scully sneers at the very notion of his
pat suggestion. "Can't do that. Not
playing by the rules. What if all FBI
Agents flashed their badges around for
unofficial reasons? It's not right, just
because I have one to flash. Who'd take
Agents seriously when there's a *real*
emergency, if we all did that?"
"Okay, okay, I get the point," Langly
backpedals, "but, like. . .who'd know
it's not? It's like Mulder says--"
"Please! Spare me," Scully scoffs, and
Langly shrinks in the seat. "I know what
Mulder says. He tells me often enough,
when he thinks I'm being little Miss Rule
Book. But now's not the time, nor place
to get into Mulder's private fantasy
world of procedural make-believe. Get
her bag, Blondie, and hop to. I'll make
it an unofficial order if that's what
"Like, I'm so gone," he says with an
obedience she wishes Mulder would try
on for size sometimes, and peels himself
away from the micro-bus to race around
to the passenger side.
The cousins exchange another fierce
hug. "I'll call tonight, Lita, to make
sure you got home safe."
"Think about taking a cruise real soon,
Dana. Discuss it with Langly. We've
already made some tentative plans."
On the strength of that revelation, both
her eyebrows raise. (So, that's it. . .)
With her door open, Langly nods, but his
face contorts a little. "Kinda," he says,
unable to look Scully in the eye.
Scully watches her winsome cousin link
arms with the lanky beanpole, who
dutifully has the rollie in tow now,
while the skycap asks if there are more
bags. Lislita tells him there aren't.
As Scully continues to survey the rushed
proceedings, suddenly, a fleet-footed
airport traffic manager is vying for her
attention, at the driver's side. Carrying
a fire-red stop sign, he pre-emptorily
tells her to move along.
Her eyes fall on the ignition, and she
sees that Langly thought to leave the key
where it is.
"Sure thing, sir. Not a problem."
Security Gate Checkpoint
"You're really gonna haveta book if you're
gonna make it, ya know. They're gonna
leave without ya!"
"No they won't--promise you won't forget
about me. I'll call you as soon as I'm
"*Me* forget about *you*? Ain't no way
I'd let that happen. Now get goin', or
I'll carry you on board myself."
"I think I'd like that."
"Well, hold that thought, and keep movin'."
"Ma'am, I'll need to see your ticket,
Absent-mindedly, Lislita hands it over to
the discriminating security personnel.
As Langly looks on, he says, "Man, I'm
gonna miss you. It's gonna be hard."
"I'll write. You write back."
"I can do that. You've got e-mail?"
Now how was that possible? Everyone had
e-mail. "A computer?"
(Now we're getting somewhere.) "Same
thing. I'll call ya tonight, and tell
ya how to get with a free e-mail service
provider. How's that?"
"Thank, you, miss. Your gate's straight
down at the head of the concourse.
Personal effects on the conveyor, and
step through this way," the automatous-
sounding employee directs.
Suddenly, Lislita's eyes are brimming
with plentiful tears, as she turns
from the x-ray machine to Langly. In
frustration, she swipes at her face.
"I. . ."
"Yeah, I know. Me too. I'll call ya
tonight." It's an awkward surprise
that a glimmer of similar wet
'weirdness' is going on behind his
glasses, too, but he has better control.
"I'm takin' that cruise. Hey, I'll be
in Miami three months from now, before
you really start missing me. Swear."
"Please, keep it moving, miss. . ."
"I love you. . ."
(NO SHE DIDN'T. Oh, God--she hauled off
and said the 'L' word. How can she know
She looks back to him again, freezes in
her steps, and runs the wrong way out of
the metal detector, oblivious to the
other perspective passengers jockeying to
finish with the security check so they
can get to their gates.
She molds herself to him one last time,
and it's all very clear, once again, why
he hates saying 'good-bye,' as they're
the hub of causing a curious scene.
Close to her shimmery hair, he whispers,
"We'll talk tonight. . ."
Too overcome by emotion, she can't speak,
nodding flush against his moist cheek.
"You're makin' this real hard, y'know,"
he says gently, massaging the back of
her neck. (I missed that. . .)
((FINAL BOARDING FOR FLIGHT 354 NON-STOP
(Thought so. That's her.) Langly braces
her absorbed face between his hands, and
he marvels at the gift she's so willing
to bestow. "Go--git!"
"I love you," she manages to choke out,
again, and it's all he can do not to
wring the life out of her as he wreathes
her tight for the last time.
In slow stages they separate. And he
hears himself croak while brushing his
thumb to and fro over the polka dot beauty
mark hugging the right corner of her chin,
"You sure 'bout that?"
"Yes," she loudly sussurates.
"To-tonight, then. . . Like I said, we'll
In transfixion, he watches her make her
bid for the departure gate. She's got
about three minutes to get herself on
board. She never does an about-face, but
walking backwards, she waves at him like
her hand'll fall off; her shoulder bag
banging her every which way as she steps
up her maddened gesticulations of farewell.
It isn't until she reaches the gate proper,
that she puts an end to all the waving, and
stands before the female gate attendant
with her back towards her. Lislita ignores
the requests ligtly-battered with impatience
for the surrender of her ticket and her
boarding pass being inspected. She keeps
her eyes riveted on Langly's long-range
(What's with her?) He shoos her on with
both hands to get her going in the right
direction, but it's as though she's stuck
in neutral. "Haul that sweet little ass
of yours on that jet-propulsioned bird,"
Langly mutters through a deep, deceptive
"Miss, please," the gate attendant says
for the third time, "what's it going to
be? Going, or staying?"
What could be determined as painfully by
a casual observer, Lislita drags her eyes
away from the distant hacker, and rests
them upon the attendant whose professional
smile has lost some of its luster. She
surrenders her paperwork, then casts a
final look in Langly's lengthy direction.
And then. . .she walks through the gate's
embarkation threshold, no longer looking
back, and disappears from his strained
Sighing heavily, Langly turns away with
a mind too engaged in jumbled thought to
think straight. (*How* can she know she
loves me? She just came out of the
freakin' blue with it like that. That's
too unreal, even for me. Tryin' to figure
women out all these years. . .and then I
go an' meet one who smithereens the mold.)
Absent-mindedly, he pulls on his right ear
lobe, too caught up in his daze to realize
he's been talking to himself, aloud, with
many folks giving him leery looks. (Nah,
man, she just got all caught up in the
heavy good-bye scene. Good-byes, yeah. . .
no one can tell me how much they don't
suck, and how emotionally-charged they
Mumbling incoherently, he removes his
glasses to dry off the moistened lenses.
He mutters a curse, and tries not to think
about their never seeing each other again.
After he sets his specs back in place, he
srubs his sandpapery cheeks with an open
hand, still staring at the last place she
was, already missing her by leaps and
bounds. He takes a few unthinking steps
backward, getting a sense of her being
very long gone, although it's only been
less than two minutes thus far.
Her phone number, which she'd given him
last night, loops within his memory like
a previously-recorded message. Nothing
short of his suffering severe trauma to
the head would make him forget.
He's about to turn away, but decides to
look back one last time.
(What the hell?)
He's seeing things; that's got to be it.
(No she didn't!!)
She's coming back. No, she's racing back.
(What did she forget?)
Before he can think that it's his mind
playing a mean trick, she slams into
him and proclaims, "I can't, 'mi amor.'
Not like this. Not right now. Now, I
need to be with you." She's hugging
him tight, her head resting atop his
shoulder, as her rollie tips over,
against his leg.
"But. . ." As though they have a will
of their own, his arms crush her against
him, but dutifully he reminds, "Girl, you
can't just flake-out on your commitment."
She fills his heart, not just his arms,
and it's hard to talk now. "Wo-won't you
be in deep shi--doo-doo for not showing
up? Your contract."
Lislita eases out of his arms, and her
eyes scour his bemused face; her eyes
are steeped in smoldering mischief,
fueling her passion. "Will I *be* in
trouble?" Her smiling lips unite with
his, all agape, as though they too are
also empowered with the cabal of free
will. The torrid kiss is broken off,
and she soughs against his lower lip,
"I'm *in* deep. . .way over my head,
Langly nods in full accord, having a
great deal of difficulty focusing clearly,
and moves over to make ample room for her
on cloud nine. Nuzzling her nose with
his, he says, "Yeah, me too, only this is
the kind of trouble I've been dreamin'
'bout for a long, long time."
"I can't stay till Y2K, but I think I can
twizzle a few more days from my festive
employer." She laughs sunnily. "Dana
will think I'm crazy."
Langly's laugh is as bright, in-between
the little kisses he's planting on her
forehead. "Well, she already knows *I*
am. C'mon, let's show her how crazed we
can be *together*. . ."
END PART 3