The Office of the Lone Gunmen

They moved their office again, immediately after Skinner took 'Sally
and Martin Harrod' to the bus.

They'd gotten it down to a science. For all the mess, the "lived in"
look of every office they occupied, they could pack the whole thing and
move it, mess and all, in under 12 hours.

This move was a bit different. For the past 9 years, they had centered
their operations in the D.C. area, had stayed close to the 'action' of
Fox Mulder's work. Their forays across the border had been limited,
one or two of them taking a 'vacation', venturing to the rainy island
in the Puget Sound only to install equipment, spend a few days in the
'Fortress' as they dubbed their last refuge.

On the surface, it looked just like any other move they had done.

Same boxes, same equipment, same anonymous rented truck. Same curses
untangling the vast network of wiring that formed the spine of the

It even moved to a similar building in a nearby town.

But this time, they did not have any expectation that they would ever
actually work in the office they were setting up.

Although the sign on the door would give no indication, "The Magic
Bullet" {{Dawson... do we know they have another publication besides
"the Lone Gunman"?... }} would be under new management.

Assistant Director Walter Skinner was out of sorts. If his whole
demeanor had not been so imposing, his secretary would have said he
was "cranky".

Filing the paperwork had been the easy part of sending Special Agents
Mulder and Scully on vacation. The hard part was that he had a sneaking
suspicion they might not be coming back.

<At least my office doesn't reek of smoke.> With both Blevins and the
Cancer Man gone, things had been relatively quiet for months. No
veiled threats, no black ops lurking in the background.

Mulder and Scully had been gone for a mere matter of days, and already
he was bored.

He pulled a torn corner of a napkin out of his pocket, and turned it
over in his fingers.

After staring at it for a few minutes, he put it back in his pocket,
put on his trenchcoat, and strode out of his office.

The phone booth wasn't quite deep enough to keep the March drizzle
off his shoulders.

{{Skinner calls the Lone Gunmen}}