Episode Summary

Teamed with a new partner while Scully's on maternity leave, Doggett investigates the mysterious disappearance of two men. After he disappears as well, Mulder defies orders and searches for him.

Episode Details


Guest Cast


Arlen Sacks: Did you do what I asked?

Gary Sacks: Yes.

Arlen Sacks: It's important, Gary. Promise me you did it.

Gary Sacks: You're sick, Dad. You should be in a hospital, not stuck out here in the middle of nowhere. You don't owe this guy, Stites, anything.

Arlen Sacks: It's not about owing.

Gary Sacks: I freeze my butt off, checking and rechecking the locks every night — for what?

Arlen Sacks: You don't need to know.

Gary Sacks: Yeah, that's for sure. I'm going to fix some dinner. [He leaves the room]

[Arlen Sacks' heart monitor quickens as spots an open window]

Arlen Sacks: Oh lord! Gary, you didn't!

[Scully is cleaning her things out of her desk — the fused coins from Dreamland, Queequeg's dog tag — when Doggett enters the office]

Doggett: Agent Scully. Can I take your coat?

Scully: I'm not staying, Agent Doggett. My doctor told me to take my maternity leave, in fact, she insisted on it.

Doggett: That's not bad, Agent Scully, you could use some time for yourself. [Scully is playing with a medallion and smiling fondly] What is it?

Scully: It's a medallion commemorating the Apollo 11 space flight. I'd like to give this to you, Agent Doggett.

Doggett: Thanks. Because?

Scully: Agent Mulder gave it to me a few years back. It symbolises teamwork, partnership... it means no one gets there alone. And after this past year and... everything that we've been through, I just... I wouldn't be here without you. [She hugs Doggett]

Doggett: Agent Scully, this pregnancy leave, it is just a leave right? I mean, you are coming back eventually? [She smiles and leaves the office. Doggett looks around the office shaking his head, he smiles as he hears the sound of woman's shoes in the hallway] You're not gone five minutes, Agent Scully and I already I'm starting to feel like a stranger in my own off — [It isn't Scully standing in the doorway]

Agent Harrison: I'm sorry?

Doggett: Can I help you?

Agent Harrison: I'm here to help you, actually. I'm Leyla Harrison. I've been looking forward to meeting you.

Doggett: Uh huh.

Agent Harrison: I've got a case here, an X-File, I think. At least the local PD can't explain it. A murder last night in upstate New York. I booked us on a flight to Buffalo Niagara. Here's the crime report.

Doggett: I'm sorry, Miss Harrison, who are you?

Agent Harrison: Oh gosh, they didn't tell you? This is so embarrassing — I'm... I'm your new partner.

Agent Harrison: They asked that the body be sent to DC. It was found in the woods, about 50 yards beyond the house. Maybe we should begin there.

Doggett: Let's begin inside the house.

Agent Harrison: Okay then. [She follows Doggett inside] The deceased is Arlen Sacks, aged 72, caretaker for the estate on which this house is situated. There were no signs of physical trauma, but local PD suspect homicide due to the dumping of the body. Mr Sacks was confided to a wheelchair the last few months, cared for since then by his son Gary, who's their chief suspect.

Doggett: Why? [Examining goo that is on the floor where Arlen Sacks was sitting in his wheelchair when he was attacked]

Agent Harrison: Um... oh, because he's missing too.

Doggett: He killed this man without leaving a mark. That would suggest premeditation and an attempt to disguise the murder, but that doesn't fit with dumping the body in the woods or fleeing the scene, both of which indicate panic, haste.

Agent Harrison: That was great. What was that last part again, about the premeditation? What is that? Slime?

Doggett: There's a small streak of it on the floor over there too.

Agent Harrison: So it's not someone, it's something. God, this really is an X-File, isn't it?

Doggett: Congratulations.

Agent Harrison: I gave the slime to the Buffalo PD. I told them we wanted to see the results right away.

Doggett: How much field experience do you have, Agent Harrison?

Agent Harrison: Um, actually this is my first time in the field.

Doggett: Let me guess, Deputy Director Kersh handed you this job, filling in for Agent Scully.

Agent Harrison: Yes. Yes he did.

Doggett: I don't know how to tell you this, Agent Harrison, but you're being used. Deputy Director Kersh is no friend to the X-Files.

Agent Harrison: I don't think you understand something, Agent Doggett. I begged for this assignment.

Doggett: You begged for it?

Agent Harrison: I was in accounting. I processed Agents Mulder and Scully's travel expenses.

Doggett: Then you are qualified.

Agent Harrison: Maybe I'm not. But I know the X-Files, Agent Doggett, inside and out. Other people don't even want to admit these questions exist, but you face them every day. I am just so excited to be a part of this. Aren't you? [Doggett walks away and examines the crime scene] Mr Sacks' body was found here, but they found no foot prints leading to it. [Doggett holds up more slime] Oh my god. There's more of it.

Doggett: Looks like it.

Agent Harrison: You know what that could be? It could be bile.

Doggett: Bile?

Agent Harrison: From a liver-eating mutant. Mulder and Scully chased one into an escalator once. It died, but there was —

Doggett: This is not a liver-eating mutant, Agent Harrison.

Agent Harrison: It could be an alien who send its skin. According to Agent Mulder's case reports they leave behind a mucous-like residue when they — [Doggett looks at her] You don't think it's that either. I'll take a sample of this, have it sent to the lab for comparison.

Doggett: That's good thinking, Agent Harrison.

Mulder: Hey. Ready to roll?

Scully: Yeah, let me just just get my keys.

Mulder: Hey, don't forget this. [He grabs a pillow and stuffs it under his shirt] Relax the back, breathe in, breathe out.

Scully: How do you know all these things, Mulder?

Mulder: I'm unemployed. I've got a lot of time on my hands. Oprah, I watch a lot of Oprah.

Scully: Thank you for doing this with me.

Mulder: What's the matter?

Scully: I don't know, I... Maybe it's hormones or... I just, I'm feeling so strange about all of this.

Mulder: This, having a baby, this?

Scully: No. No. Leaving work, I guess. I mean I... I walked out of that office today feeling like a deserter.

Mulder: You've paid your dues there, Scully, more than paid them. You're concerned about Agent Doggett.

Scully: You know, the entire time that I was down there, I had someone to watch my back.

Mulder: I'm betting that Agent Doggett can take care of himself, he's a big boy. You've go to worry about the little boy... or little girl. Boy? Or Girl? [Scully smiles]

[All of the furniture in the main house has been covered in plastic. Doggett lifts aside some of the plastic from a desk and picks up a book, entitled; The Sixth Extinction by Robert Leakey. Inside is written; For Herman Stites, may you find what you seek. Doggett slowly unholsters his gun an turns around, checking the hallway]

Agent Harrison: Oh.

Doggett: Agent Harrison. What are you doing here?

Agent Harrison: I followed the — [Doggett places a finger against his lips]

Doggett: It's here.

Agent Harrison: It? What it?

Doggett: You're armed, right?

Agent Harrison: What do you want me to do?

Doggett: I want you to go outside and I want you to stand by the front door. Whatever it is, I'm going to try and flush it out. Agent Harrison, take the safety off. [Doggett is walking around the house when he hears shots from outside] Harrison. Agent Harrison. [He sees drag marks in the lawn and follows them — dropping through a trapdoor that springs under his feet]

Skinner: [answering mobile] Skinner.

Scully: Is it true?

Skinner: Agent Scully.

Scully: I can't reach Agent Doggett and someone told me he's gone missing.

Skinner: He was investigating a murder and he hasn't reported back.

Scully: Why wasn't I told?

Skinner: Agent Scully, don't worry.

Scully: I'm heading into the Bureau right now.

Skinner: No you're not.

Scully: Sir, are you ordering me not to go looking for Agent Doggett?

Skinner: I've got every available law enforcement officer out here. You're on maternity leave now, just... trust that we're doing everything that we know how to do.

Scully: I know you are, but what if it's not enough?

Mulder: Seems like old times. You in scrubs, slicing and dicing.

Scully: What are you doing here, Mulder?

Mulder: Actually, I wandered away from my tour. [He shows her his visitor pass] A better question is; what are you doing here?

Scully: I found something that may prove helpful in locating Agent Doggett. This is Arlen Sacks, the murder victim Doggett was investigating. This old man was not murdered, Mulder. He died of heart failure, evidently after he was blinded by a chemical substance of some kind. The orbits have residual traces of a slimy substance, known as hydrolytic enzymes.

Mulder: Venom. Produced by reptiles.

Scully: How'd you know that?

Mulder: Before Agent Doggett and his partner went missing, they send in samples to be analysed — hydrolytic enzymes. Skinner told me.

Scully: I also found some bacteria in the venom, which I'm going to do a culture on.

Mulder: Let someone else do it. There are other concerns right now.

Scully: I know. But this is an X-File, Mulder and you are out of the Bureau. And now If I go home, where is Skinner going to find someone qualified to look into this?

Mulder: I know where he could find somebody.

Agent Harrison: Agent Doggett?

Doggett: I'm right here. Are you all right?

Agent Harrison: It sprayed by eyes with something. My vision's all blurry.

Doggett: That makes two of us.

Agent Harrison: Three, actually. [She leads him to another room] I think it's Gary Sacks, the son of the murder victim.

Doggett: How'd you get down here?

Agent Harrison: I think it dragged me down here. I'm not sure. So what do we do now?

Doggett: I don't know.

Agent Harrison: Mulder and Scully investigated a case once in Florida, that involved subterranean men who took people underground.

Doggett: I told you that this is not a man. I fell through some kind of trap. I'm guessing that somebody put that there to provide live meals for this thing.

Agent Harrison: You're not saying that includes us?

Doggett: I don't intend to wait around and find out. These tunnels were built by bootleggers back in Prohibition, there's got to be one that leads back to the house.

Agent Harrison: There's something up there, I think. Some kind of light.

Doggett: I can't tell how high up that is.

Skinner: Mulder, you're not supposed to be out here.

Mulder: I'm not out here. What happened to the search?

Skinner: Police in West Seneca found Doggett's car parked at a convenience store about a half hour from here.

Mulder: How'd it get there?

Skinner: I don't know. But we're redirecting our search. Where are you going?

Mulder: Think I'll take a walk through the woods.

Skinner: We've already had 40 people looking around out there, Mulder.

Mulder: Well what the hell, I'm out of a job already, right.

Herman Stites: Thought all you people left.

Mulder: You are?

Herman Stites: Herman Stites. I own this property.

Mulder: You're just the man I wanted to speak to, Mr Stites. Have you seen anything unusual around here?

Herman Stites: Unusual? How?

Mulder: Dangerous animals, reptiles.

Herman Stites: I'm confused. I thought the police were looking for a man. Arles's son, Gary.

Mulder: That is what they're looking for. I don't think Gary Sacks committed this murder, Mr Stites, but I think he may be a victim himself.

Herman Stites: I didn't catch your name, Agent.

Mulder: Kersh. Alvin Kersh.

Herman Stites: I'm a scientist, Mr Kersh.

Mulder: What kind of scientist are you?

Herman Stites: A biologist, so I know something about animals. They don't generally carry men off into the woods, like poor Mr Sacks.

Mulder: I don't think this was an animal. I think it was a man, using some kind of reptile venom to blind them first.

Herman Stites: That would be quite a trick.

Mulder: Yeah, you'd really have to know what you were doing. You'd have to be, say a scientist.

Herman Stites: Are you accusing be of something, Mr Kersh?

Mulder: No. I'm just thinking out loud, Mr Stites.

[Doggett finally makes it to the top of the shaft and, pushing the grid aside struggles to get out. A blurry shape walks over to the shaft]

Doggett: I need a hand.

[Herman Stites steps on Doggett's fingers, Doggett loses his grip and drops back down]

Agent Harrison: Agent Doggett. What happened?

Doggett: I lost my grip. With a little help from the man upstairs. [They hear the grating sound of Herman Stites replacing the grid. Doggett yells up the shaft] Hey! Hey! Hey! I'm a federal agent!

Agent Harrison: I don't understand. Why would he want to keep us down here?

Doggett: You wanted to face the unknown, Agent Harrison. Well, you're facing it now.

Agent Harrison: But who is he?

Doggett: Some kind of scientist, I think. I saw some books, papers on biology in his library.

Agent Harrison: It could be some kind of symbiotic relationship between this man and this creature. Mulder and Scully —

Doggett: Mulder and Scully aren't here, Agent Harrison, we are. And wild speculation isn't going to help us find a way out

Agent Harrison: You think I'm pretty foolish, don't you?

Doggett: I appreciate your enthusiasm, but you want to take leaps that aren't supported by the facts. Now what I want you to do is, stay with that guy right there, while I look for another way out. And if this thing comes near you, I want you to shoot.

Agent Harrison: Agent Doggett. He's gone.

Doggett: What do you mean, he's gone?

Agent Harrison: I don't know, but it must have taken him.

Mulder: [answering mobile] Mulder.

Scully: Mulder, what are you doing?

Mulder: I'm spitting sunflowers shells on Herman States driveway. What are you doing, Scully?

Scully: I just got off the phone with Skinner, who is furious. This man, Stites, just called him, saying that you've been impersonating Deputy Director Kersh and making baseless accusations.

Mulder: Well, what's he mad about? Me impersonating Kersh or me harassing Stites?

Scully: Mulder, the victim had reptile venom in his eyes. Are you now saying that it was a man who did this?

Mulder: What are you saying it is, Scully?

Scully: I know this may be hard to believe, coming from me, but some kind of reptile attack is the only explanation consistent with the scientific evidence.

Mulder: I don't think it's a monster that we're dealing with here, I think it is a man.

Scully: And why do you say that?

Mulder: You regifted.

Scully: I'm sorry?

Mulder: My Apollo medallion.

Scully: You found it?

Mulder: Yeah, I found it on the grass on Stites' estate. Doggett must be around here somewhere.

Scully: What am I looking at?

Pathology Assistant: As you asked, we cultured the bacteria from the hydrolytic enzymes that were spread into the old man's eyes.

Scully: Looks like they're breaking down the tissue.

Pathology Assistant: That's exactly what they're doing. The venom blinds its victim, then bacteria excretes proteates and collegenates throughout the victim's body.

Scully: Digestive enzymes.

Pathology Assistant: Muscle, bone, all of it is slowly liquefied for easy digestion, while the victim's skin is made hard and brittle, forming a sack or shell from which the reptile can drink.

Scully: So the reptile sprays its victim, then all it has to do is wait.

Pathology Assistant: There are precedents for this sort of thing in nature.

Scully: Yeah, but there are no species that could do all of this. At least, not yet.

Pathology Assistant: What do you mean?

Doggett: Talk about the blind leading the blind.

Agent Harrison: I owe you an apology, Agent Doggett.

Doggett: You're doing fine, Agent Harrison, hang tough.

Agent Harrison: You were right, I'm not qualified.

Doggett: We're going to find a way out of here, Agent Harrison.

Agent Harrison: I don't think I am.

Doggett: Why? What is it?

Agent Harrison: Whatever happened to Sacks, I think it's happening to me. I'm completely blind now.

[They hear a noise, Doggett fires and misses. He follows and hits a closed and locked door]

Agent Harrison: Oh god. Agent Doggett. I think it's Gary Sacks.

Mulder: [answering mobile] Mulder.

Scully: You were right about Herman Stites, Mulder.

Mulder: What did you find?

Scully: Well, Stites is a cryptobiologist, specialising in reptile genetics. Listen to this; it says here that published a monograph last year, claiming to be on the verge of creating a new species of reptile.

Mulder: You don't think he succeeded, do you?

Scully: I don't know. He dropped out of sight and never published a follow-up. But Mulder, the bacteria inside this venom, is Stites is genetically altering reptile breeds, it may explain the peculiar properties. Mulder, are you listening to me? Mulder? Mulder?

Mulder: I think Mr Stites might have a lot more than that to explain. [Something is moving in the woods, Mulder hangs up and gives chase]

Scully: Mulder? Mulder?

[Mulder spots the creature climbing up the house and onto the roof, he pounds on the front door]

Mulder: Mr Stites. Mr Stites, open up. Mr Stites, open the door. Mr Stites. Mr Stites.

Mulder: Mr Stites. [He walks away and starts to make a call, when Herman Stites finally answers the door]

Herman Stites: What do you want?

Mulder: Where is it, Mr Stites. This thing you're protecting, this creature of yours. I don't think you meant for it to, but it got out last night and attacked the caretaker and his son, and then it attacked my colleagues. Now I could have 50 men in here to comb this place within the hour. Where are they, Mr Stites?

Doggett: It's all right, it's just me. It doesn't make any damn sense, there's no exit except that door.

Agent Harrison: Maybe it does. [There is pounding from the door]

Mulder: Agent Doggett?

Doggett: Right here.

Mulder: It's all right, Agent Doggett, we're going to get you out of here.

Doggett: Who's that with you?

Mulder: It's the man who lives here.

Doggett: He's been protecting this thing. He's kept us down here.

Mulder: Agent Doggett, I know —

Agent Harrison: It's him. He's not protecting it, he is it.

[Doggett and Mulder look from Agent Harrison to Herman Stites, but the man has gone at the door is locked again]

Doggett: Agent Mulder.

Mulder: Agent Doggett, I don't have a weapon, I'm coming to get yours. No, I'm not.

Doggett: Mulder, I can't see. Mulder, what is it?

Mulder: It's right above you. It's coming this way.

Doggett: Where Mulder? I can't see.

Mulder: Aim down. Aim at the sound of my voice.

Doggett: No. I'll shoot you!

Mulder: You're not going to shoot me.

Doggett: I can't see.

Mulder: Just aim at the sound of my voice.

Doggett: Where is it?

Mulder: Aim at me.

Doggett: No.

Mulder: Fire when I tell you to fire.

Doggett: No.

Mulder: Fire. [Doggett fires as the creature leaps for Mulder]

Doggett: Agent Mulder? Agent Mulder?

Mulder: I'm right here. I'm right here, Agent Doggett.

[The dead creature turns back into Herman Stites]

Scully: Agent Doggett.

Doggett: Is this it? [He thinks Scully has gone into labour]

Scully: No.

Mulder: No. We just came by to visit Agent Harrison.

Scully: How is she?

Doggett: She's on the same anti-venom treatment I got. Her eyesight's pretty much back, doctor says she'll be fine physically.

Scully: Skinner said she won't be returning to the X-Files.

Doggett: That was her choice. It's just to be me for a while.

Mulder: I want to return something to you, that I think you deserve to keep.

Doggett: I appreciate the gesture, but if it's all the same to you, there's someone else who should have it.

Agent Harrison: No way. [She's holding the Apollo medallion] This means... I can't tell you what this means to me. Can I ask you something?

Mulder: Sure.

Agent Harrison: When you went to Antarctica, to save Agent Scully from being taken by that spaceship, and you ran out of gas in your snowcat, how did you get back?

Scully: Um, well first of all it was never... actually proven that it was a spaceship.

Mulder: It wasn't?

Scully: Well, no, what...

Mulder: Proven?

Scully: What happened was that we fell off of something that...

Mulder: Something?

Scully: ...rose out of the ice.

Mulder: Well, what do you think that was?

Scully: Well, I don't know what it was, but we never, we didn't actually see...

Mulder: Was it a spaceship?

Scully: ...a spaceship.

Mulder: I can't believe you're saying it's not a spaceship, when you saw it.

Scully: Ah, I mean, it could have been a spaceship. Mulder, but you don't...

Mulder: Of course it was a spaceship.

Scully: Look, we don't know that it was, but you don't have a picture of it or anything.

Mulder: You know it was a spaceship, you saw it!

Scully: No, I did, no no no no no. Remember, I was unconscious. And when I woke up there was no spaceship.

Mulder: You saw the spaceship.

Scully: No no no. [Doggett is watching them bicker from the door] ...and you were frozen and I remember I hugged you until you were not frozen any more... [Doggett leaves]