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Borchardt C-93 selfloading pistol

Designed by Hugo Borchardt c.1893 and manufactured until 1902 in small numbers by Ludwig Loewe & Co in Berlin, Germany.
7,65x25mm Borchardt 8-round removable box magazine, toggle-lock short-recoil semi-automatic, detachable stock/holster.

The predecessor to the Luger Parabellum pistol, first selfloading pistol to be mass produced and one of the few toggle lock firearm out there. Arguably the sexiest.

Are We Just Friends?

The two of us, we assume that we’re just friends. Just friends. But whenever I look into your eyes, you tell me that we’re more than just mere acquaintances. Our eyes love to acknowledge each other, always wanting to lock eyes. When we make eye contact, you can’t just tell me you look at all your friends the same way as you look at me. Though neither of us utters a single word to each other, I could tell what you were telling me with every glance you made towards me. And I thought I was shy, too bashful to reach out to you, however, you were also as shy, only communicating to me with your eyes. Though you were never the guy that anybody would ever label as unconfident, always loud and talkative with your close friends. But only with me, you were enveloped in your introverted circle. Why does love have to be so complicated? We know our feelings for each other, yet both are too scared to do anything. Nether less, you wouldn’t consider us just friends right? We share too much enigma to just classify us only as just friends. Let’s just label us as lovers with unspoken words. Because we don’t need words when the heart is purely true since love can be heard even in the deadliest silence. 

Ninteenth Christmas

the series is as follows so far:

FirstSecond ThirdFourthFifthFifth Christmas, Part 2SixthSeventhEighthNinthTenthEleventhTwelfth

NOTE: I might not be able to answer or comment for the next few weeks … going on vacation in Italy but I’m gonna try this scheduling thing to see if these will continue to post while I’m gone :) …

———————–

She’d shown up on Maggie’s porch a few days after Thanksgiving with a carefully packed suitcase and pain so evident on her face that her mother cried while Scully stood quietly in her arms.

It wasn’t until two days later that Maggie, nearly asleep, felt the mattress dip and her youngest daughter crawl under the covers with her, seeking refuge in the familiar embrace of the one person in the world she had left to trust.

Twenty minutes later, Maggie continued rubbing her daughter’s back while Scully took a deep breath, whispering out, “I had to leave, Mama.”

“Did he stop taking the medication?”

Shaking her head against her mother’s arm, “He’s been throwing out the pills or throwing them back up. He says he doesn’t like how they make him feel, like he’s dead inside but when he doesn’t take them, he stops doing anything.” Sniffing, then clawing for a Kleenex behind her from the nightstand, “this time it’s been nearly two weeks since he showered and he hasn’t written anything for months and when he does get up, he locks himself in the basement on his computer looking for what he missed.”

“What he missed?”

“Why it didn’t happen? What clue or evidence did he not pay close enough attention to? When did the date change? Will it happen tomorrow or today or in a month? When will it happen now?”

The abrupt way her daughter stopped made Maggie believe there was more. Pulling Scully closer, she kissed the crown of her head, asking in a whispered voice, “but what happened to make you suddenly appear on my front porch?”

Slipping from her mother’s arms, she stood, wiping her nose before her face crumpled again, fresh tears racing down her cheeks, “he, um … he decided that the new date would be last Friday and when I got home from Thanksgiving dinner here, I found the house shut up and locked which, while not unusual now, I also found him sitting on the stairs just inside with a shotgun, waiting for me or whoever else may show up before I did, unannounced because the invasion had begun.”

Maggie, sitting up by now, covered her mouth, “did he fire it at you? Dana …”

Holding up her hand, “no, he didn’t but he dragged me downstairs and kept me down there for two days while he waited for the end and,” embarrassment was driving her tears now, “I argued and I yelled and he wouldn’t let me leave and I just … I can’t do it anymore.” Pacing now, “I can’t have him pulling me out of bed because of a new theory. I can’t take not knowing what I’m going to find when I come in the front door. He won’t listen to reason anymore and … … and I told him, once he let me back upstairs, that I was leaving … for good … and when I did, he didn’t even come to the steps.”

This last part twisted the knife in Maggie’s heart.

She loved her Fox but Dana came first and letting her anger explode in one expletive puff of rage, “that God-damned asshole needs to grow up and realize he is useless, worthless and hopeless without you!”

Scully’s laugh burst out, a wet, hitching, heart-breaking, wry sound that segued immediately into sobbing, propelling her back into bed, this time her head on Maggie’s lap, “I don’t know what to do anymore.”

&&&&&&&&&&&&

He was better off without her there to distract him. He had things to do. He’d been trolling chatrooms, archives, hacking as best he could, learning his way through systems, tracing would-be clues, listening to police bands and military chatter, talking to a man who reminded him so much of Frohike that he began to believe that maybe the Gunmen weren’t dead after all but just hiding deep, deep underground, waiting for their moment to materialize back into the real world.

Two days since he’d heard her call downstairs that she was leaving.

Or maybe three.

Did he eat today? There was a dirty dish in the sink but it may have been hers … or his … from before.

Four days.

He needed more paper for the printer.

Six days.

What was that smell?

Eight.

Shouldn’t she be home from work by now? Maybe she was. Maybe he’d just missed her.

She must be here. There’s a pile of dirty dishes now, in the sink and on the counter. Why hadn’t she done the dishes? It was her week to do them.

He thought it was anyway.

December 1st.

Was it possible that the invasion had been just a year off? Maybe the ships had been delayed? Oh, God, what if they were coming this year?

Scully, where the hell was Scully?

Fumbling for the phone, he heard a clicking now and immediately hung up. Land lines were bad. Land lines could be bugged.

He had a firewall and scramblers and could talk over his computer if he needed to.

She wasn’t at the hospital. She didn’t work that day. Why did the staff sound suspicious of him? Did they know he knew something they didn’t? Where was Scully?!

Maggie. Maggie might know. She should know. Maggie. Maggie. Maggie. Call Maggie.

“Fox, she’s not here right now. She’s out doing some grocery shopping.”

Breathing easier, “good,” then hung up.

She would be back in an hour and they’d sit down and talk about the new date.

December 3rd.

What is that smell? Was that him?

Had she come home yet?

Looking through the cupboards, he saw them emptier than before, no vegetables in the drawer, no milk in the carton. Why hadn’t she said ‘hello’ to him when she got back after shopping?

He needed to lie down, the headache encompassing him driving him to the couch, the world spinning, the world closing on him, the world melting into fiery chaos then dripping in darkness, terrifying, unwieldly.

Why wasn’t she home yet?

December 8th.

“Scully, where are you? You didn’t come home yesterday from grocery shopping.”

Nearly dropping her phone in the doctor’s lounge where she was forcing down a salad and sandwich, “Mulder?”

“Yes, it’s me. Who the hell else would it be? Where are you?”

“I’m at work, Mulder. What’s wrong?”

“You need to come home right now. We need to prep the basement some more. The new date is going to be the 21st. I think we just got the year wrong. You need to come home and help get ready.”

Shutting her eyes, she fought to keep the tears from dropping, “Mulder. I’m at work right now and then I go back to Mom’s. I told you last time you called that I was staying there now, remember?”

He sure as hell did not remember! He’d have remembered that conversation and telling her that in no uncertain terms, he heard her say good-bye, then hang up.

The couch.

He needed to lay down.

December 12th.

Washing a dish when he needed it, he ate something.

December 16th.

He hadn’t slept in two days but he had boarded up the back windows. The back door. Barricaded so nothing could get through without a lot of assistance and a battering ram and even then, it would take awhile. Moved out Maggie’s chair. Took up too much room. He needed the room. He needed the space for the camping gear, the propane tanks, the extra sleeping bags, the sandbags for shoring up walls.

December 19th.

He grew weary of calling Scully. He did it every hour on the hour or … was it once a day? Twice a day? Time didn’t pass right in the basement. Climbing up the stairs, he took a shower, wondering where her shampoo had gone.

Why didn’t she just say ‘hi’ to him when she got home?

The bed was made so she must have done that before she went to work.

“Scully, you need to come home right now! I don’t want you on the roads when it begins.”

“Mulder.”

“Why are you crying? We’ll make it through. We always do. We’ll come out of this and we’ll beat them all and we’ll have a planet all to ourselves.”

“I have to go to work, Mulder.”

Ten minutes later, against her better judgement, she answered the phone while in the car, knowing it was him but still not able to ignore him, “what is it, Mulder?”

“Will! We have to go get Will! There’s no one to protect him! He doesn’t know what’s going to happen!! We need to go get him, bring him home! We only have a day left, Scully! We need to go get him!”

Nearly running into the car stopped ahead of her, she slammed on the brakes, pulled onto the shoulder and hung up the phone, turned it off, smashed it on the steering wheel, slammed it on the dashboard for good measure, then pitched it out the window, watching until at least three cars had sped over it, scattering a minimum of 38 pieces of cellular nonsense across four lanes of traffic.

&&&&&&&&&

She finished her shift in peace, the only things keeping her together and distracted were her patients, who needed all the brain processing power she had left. Driving back to Maggie’s, she kissed her mother on the cheek, then curled up in her old bed, staring at the wall until far into the night when, exhaustion winning, she drifted off, restless and scared.

The next morning, the hospital called politely asking her if everything was okay and to tell her that someone had been bothering them all night with calls asking for her. Apologizing profusely, she emailed Mulder a simple, “I am not at work. Do not call me there. I will get fired. See you on the other side of the apocalypse.”

After removing the last line, she sent it to him, then popped Maggie’s phone off the hook and went back to bed.

&&&&&&&&&&

He was overwrought that she wasn’t with him. She would die out in the open and he would be alone in the world. There would be no point to anything after that. All this had been for her. To keep her safe. To keep her alive. To keep her with him forever.

December 21st.

What that a plane overhead?

That low thump outside?

Was she home?

Did she come home because she believed?

Could he take the risk of unlocking the doors to let her in?

What if it was them?

What if they had silently taken over the world? Were coming for him?

What if they had Scully already?

One. Two. Three. Four.

That’s how many walls there were.

One. Two. Three. Four.

That’s how many socks he had on,

One. Two. Three. Four.

He collapsed on the couch against the wall, the rows and rows of canned goods swimming, weaving as he passed out from lack of food and terror at what might be happening above.

&&&&&&&&&&&&

Scully slept through December 21st.

She stretched herself awake on the 22nd and made breakfast for her and Maggie.

She stared out the window at the cold, clear blue sky, bare trees whipping in the frigid wind, sun bright but far away, summer yellow having faded to pale tones, near white, warmth meager but making a valiant effort to thaw her just a few moments at a time.

They set up her mother’s Christmas tree that day, decorated the house, prepped for Christmas Day dinner, 15 people strong, not counting Mulder, which she had done accidently twice now, her heart skipping a beat whenever she realized he wouldn’t be there beside her.

Bill, Tara and the boys arrived on the 24th but didn’t ask about Mulder, having been appropriately warned by Maggie to, in politer terms, shut up about him.

She tried her best to be social, to be present and accounted for but when the first wave of her panic attack hit, she quietly disappeared up to her temporary living quarters on her mother’s floor, having been de-roomed by her nephews. Shutting the door, she took ten minutes to get herself back under control, her breathing less erratic, her heart still thumping hard but the light-headed feeling lessening.

Changing her sweat-soaked shirt, she washed her face, took a deep breath and reciting the periodic table, symbol, atomic weight and at least two characteristics for each element, she returned to her family, waving off her mother’s questioning look and Bill’s angry one.

Christmas Day was no better. In theory, more people meant more distraction but reality screamed at her that he wasn’t there, that he might be dead somewhere in their house, that he hadn’t tried to call Maggie’s house once since she’d emailed him.

Presents were unbearable, the happy faces of kids and adults twisted like hot knives through her soul, each laugh, each giggle, each thank you and exclamation another icepick stabbed to her brain, the pressure headache building behind her eyes to the point where she excused herself to vomit from the pain.

Drugs didn’t touch it and finally, she was forced to admit defeat, retreating yet again upstairs, puking a second time before folding herself in the corner of the room, knocking her head lightly against the wall, an old trick she hadn’t resorted to for years in attempts to distract one major pain with a steady stream of minor ones.

She fell asleep there eventually, only to have Maggie wake her by shaking her shoulders, “Dana? Honey? Are you okay? Why are you on the floor?”

Having slipped to the ground sometime after drifting off, she sat up, her headache down to a quietly manageable roar, “I was knocking the wall to help with my headache.”

Knowing this was one of her daughter’s coping techniques for pain, she didn’t inquire about it further, “we’re eating dinner. Would you like to come down or would you like me to bring you a plate?”

She wasn’t hungry in the least but she had a clarity about her next actions, “I’m okay. I’m not hungry but if you could save me a plate, I’ll eat when I get back.”

With a sad smile, she combed her fingers lightly through Scully’s hair, “are you going to go check on him?”

It felt like defeat, like retreating, like giving in when she should be steadfast and strong, “I have to make sure he’s okay. I won’t stay but I can’t abandon him. Not right now. Not ever probably.” Sighing deeply, she only met her mother’s eyes when Maggie tilted her head in her direction, “but I don’t know that we’ll ever be your Fox’n’Dana again.”

Maggie pulled her into a hug, “I’ll love him anyways and always. Make sure he knows that.”

“I will.”

&&&&&&&&&&&

It was fairly late by the time she pulled up to the house. It was dark and silent once again, but this time, the windows were boards and the motion sensor didn’t turn the porch light on. Cautiously, she used her key, opening the door slowly and calling his name, fearful she’d find him with his shotgun on the stairs again.

Instead, everything was normal.

Except for the smell of rotting trash and sawdust.

Not worrying about that, she made for the basement steps but noticed his feet hanging over the end of the couch in the living room. Beelining there instead, she saw his matted hair, three week old beard, dirty white shirt and holey socks. Not sure she could, should or would wake him up, she watched until she was sure he was breathing, then gently set her gift on the coffee table in front of him.

Noticing he hadn’t decorated, she was almost grateful, not wanting to think about past Christmas’s and definitely not wanting to see their ornament collection judging her for abandoning both it and him.

Sneaking back out, she locked the door behind.

&&&&&&&&&&

The following afternoon, once Mulder had woken up from his liquored stupor, he noticed the holiday gift bag sitting in front of him.

He couldn’t bring himself to look but he didn’t throw it away either.

He instead tucked in a drawer in the rolltop desk and returned to his half-bottle of Jack Daniels.

Merry Christmas indeed.