Title: Why the Caged Bird Sings
Author: XScout
Classification: VA
Rating: G
Spoilers: End Game, Paper Hearts, Closure
Keywords: None
Summary: Is false hope better than no hope at all?

Disclaimer: Fox Mulder belongs to Dana Scully as she belongs to him and Samatha Mulder belongs to Heaven. I suppose Chris Carter also gets a percentage as well as 1013 and Fox. They're not mine but I'll do with them what I please, as long as I don't profit from it. Profiting from other people's misery (mainly Mulder's) would be unethical.

Author's Notes: Well, I have to break this writer's block sometime and now is as good a time as any. Stuck in the middle of several different stories, one with a deadline, mixed in with work and relationships, and you get one big brick wall. Hopefully this story will be the sledgehammer. Feedback is appreciated and always responded to. XScout@hotmail.com


Why the Caged Bird Sings


Twenty-seven years is a long time to think about something. To obsess about something every single day for 9855 days has a lasting effect on a person. You always have it in the back of your mind, no matter where you are or what you're doing. It's in your dreams, your nightmares, and your delusions. It becomes a part of you. Eventually it becomes so intertwined with your own being that to be without it would be the same as losing one of your senses.

I thought that the end of my search for my sister would bring me happiness, that finally knowing the answer to the greatest mystery of my life would bring me some peace. I know now that I was wrong.

My quest for the truth behind my sister's abduction has been a driving force in my life for so long that the idea of living without it hovering over me is daunting. I had something to work towards, something to drive me. Now it is gone and I have lost all direction in my life. No, that is not true. I still have Scully, and she remains my compass as always. But my map is gone, and with it my hope.

Twenty-seven years of built up hopes; when those come crashing down, it is a shattering revelation. Despite all the doubts along the way, put there by counselors, parents, fellow agents, and even murderers, I have still maintained the hope that Samantha was still alive. I held onto that hope, feeding it with all the tidbits of information I had gathered over the years until it had grown into a safety blanket that I could wrap around myself in times of despair. The night can chill you to the bone without a blanket and that is what the truth does.

The truth is out there. My motto. My downfall. I remember, during the Roche case, Addie Sparks' father saying that not knowing was better. I didn't agree with him then, but I do now. To discover that you have been searching for ghost for more than half your life is not a comforting realization. My sister is dead, having been taken to the stars over twenty years ago by a force I cannot comprehend in order to save her from a fate worse than death. Surrounded by confusion and disbelief, it is almost impossible for me to come to terms with this. Why would the Bounty Hunter tell me that my sister is alive? Did the Consortium really believe that she was alive, that They considered her lost somewhere? I have so many questions and only one answer - Samantha is dead.

I told Scully that I was free. What I didn't realize was the price that came with freedom. I was free from the obligation and guilt that had been plaguing me for so long, but was the truth better than absolution? No. Because as long as I had the hope that my sister was alive, I had purpose. I had the faith that all that my quest had cost Scully, our families, and me was worth it. But now it was all for naught. I can comfort myself with the knowledge that the existence of extra-terrestrials has been a worthy discovery and that the defeat of the Consortium was also an important pursuit. However, they were all reached because of the simple wish to find my sister.

I've heard the question asked, "Why does the caged bird sing?" I answer that it is precisely because the bird is in the cage. Within its confines, the bird does not know what is outside, the dangers and hardships that await it in freedom. It sings because it has hope. I am that bird and the cage was my quest. I am free now and I can no longer sing.

I know why the caged bird sings. It is because the truth is too painful and ignorance can be a savior.