Disclaimer:  I do not own Torchwood or The X-Files, or any character of either franchise.  I am only borrowing them for
entertainment purposes and I will return them in moderately good condition.

Notes:  This is nothing.  Random bit of fun.  An idea spawned by boredom and hours upon hours of watching the X-Files with
my co-conspirator, Tenshi-Chan.  I may write more, and I do have some ideas, but it won't happen until other fiction gets
finished first.

Further Notes:  This story is set pre-series for both shows.  Jack is still a freelance agent with Torchwood and at the moment
Mulder is working alone on the X-Files.




Vocational Pursuits




It had been a long day and all Fox Mulder wanted was to collapse onto his couch and allow his mind to melt away by watching
hours of late-night television until he could finally, hopefully, get some sleep.  He fumbled in his pocket for his keys, then paused
as his eyes caught sight of his door.  It was open, just a crack, but open nonetheless and there was light spilling from
underneath the door.

Someone had been, or was, in his apartment.

Being as quiet as possible, he drew his gun.  Taking a breath, he tried to ready himself for a potentially violent encounter.  If
there was someone in his apartment, it wasn't likely that they were just there to chat.  Of course, there may not be anyone in
there at all.  Could be burglars.  Not that there was much to steal in Mulder's home.

He kicked the door open and scanned around the dining room with gun and eyes.  He stepped inside cautiously, always looking
where his weapon was aimed, keeping his ears attuned to every sound.

There was no sign of anyone in the dining room.  He moved across to the main room and trained his gun on the figure he found
there.  He was a rather attractive man in his early to mid thirties, wearing what looked like World War II era clothing.  The
stranger had dark hair and bright blue eyes that seemed to be assessing Mulder.  Despite being an intruder and Mulder aiming a
loaded weapon at him, the stranger seemed to be fully at home with his feet up on Mulder's coffee table sipping at a glass of
water.

Mulder was far from impressed.  "Who are you and what are you doing in my apartment?" he demanded.

The stranger put his glass down.  He leaned back again and flashed a dazzling smile.  "Special Agent Fox Mulder.  Although you
prefer to go by your last name, as you find your first distasteful."  He quirked a flirty smile at him, and ran his eyes up and down
Mulder in a less than innocent way.  "Pity, too, since your name suits you so well."

Mulder scoffed.  "Okay.  I'll ask again.  Who are you and what are you doing in my apartment?"

The stranger continued as if Mulder had never spoken.  "You are an Oxford graduate with a Bachelor of Arts Degree.  Attended
the FBI Academy in Quantico and graduated with honors.  Quite a career, you had too.  The best analyst in the violent crimes
section from what I heard.  Until, of course, you got to working on the X-Files.  Now you're either ignored in a drafty little
basement office, or ridiculed behind your back.  Probably both, actually.  I bet they even have a nickname for you.  There's
always a nickname."

'Spooky,' Mulder's mind supplied, but didn't voice it.  Instead he warned, "I'm not going to ask again."

Giving him yet another flirtatious smile, the man stood with what could only be described as a dramatic flourish.  Mulder took a
step back, keeping his eyes and weapon on the man.  Hands raised passively, the man merely smiled at him.  "My name isn't
important.  Your work is, though.  You've gained the attention of the people I work for."

"And who is that?"

"Why don't you put the gun away and we can discuss it?  You can frisk me if you want."  This was said with a waggle of dark
eyebrows.

"Keep your hands up and turn around," Mulder ordered.

When the man complied, Mulder checked him for weapons.  He didn't come up empty-handed.  He pulled an old revolver from
the holster at the stranger's side.  However, he didn't find any means of identification, not even a wallet.

Mulder took a few steps back, keeping a safe distance between himself and his burglar.  "Sit on your hands and start talking."  
While the stranger did so, Mulder dumped the bullets out of the revolver and tossed the empty weapon on the coffee table.

The man gave him a look.  "Wouldn't you rather be working someplace where your word will hold weight, Agent Mulder?  
Someplace where people will take you seriously and not mock you behind your back?"  He leaned back into the couch cushions,
smiling charmingly.  "I represent a company that could give you that."

"Who?"  Mulder asked.  He remained standing, keeping a watchful eye over his intruder, but did slip his gun into his holster.

"Oh, no one you've ever heard of.  They're physically based overseas, but have far-reaching influences.  Working for them,
you'd have the authority to find out anything you want.  Police, Government agencies, nothing can stand in your way.  That
elusive 'Truth' you've been seeking for so long is in your grasp.  All you have to do is reach out and take it."

Mulder wasn't fool enough to so readily believe a complete and utter stranger.  This could easily be a trick to get him to stop
working on the X-Files.  Get him to quit the FBI and stop investigating, to keep him from finding the truth about his sister, about
everything.

"You're lying."

To Mulder's consternation, the man only smiled at him.  "What will it take to convince you?"  He didn't pause for an answer.  
"Just think about it.  You'd have more resources available to you than you could ever hope to gain working for the FBI.  You'd
have a nice office with a view instead of being hidden away in the basement like you were some dirty little secret.  Or, hey, you
could work freelance, like me.  Keep your own hours, do jobs only when you want to."

Mulder wasn't so easily swayed.  "Sounds to me like you're just trying to keep me from arresting you and locking you away for
breaking and entering, trespassing and burglary."

The man seemed amused by Mulder's words.  "I'd never see a jail cell, my friend.  I'd be gone long before they opened the ink
to get my fingerprints."  He stood up smoothly, seemingly not threatened as Mulder hastily drew his weapon to cover him.  "I'll
just be going, now."  He held his hand out expectantly.  "It's old, but I've become rather fond of my gun.  I'd like it back before
I leave, please.  You can keep the bullets if you want."

Mulder hesitated.

"Listen, I came here to offer you a place, not threaten you in any way.  And that's all I've done." He happily accepted the
unloaded revolver when it was returned to him.  "It isn't my fault you work such ungodly hours.  I've been here all afternoon."

Mulder raised an eyebrow.  "Oh?  So, as a result, you decided to pick my lock and waltz into my home and make yourself
comfortable?"  He kept his gun in his hand, just to be on the safe side.

The man shrugged.  "If I wanted to do that, there would have been far less clothing involved."  With a smirk, he ran his eyes up
and down Mulder, in an appraising manner.  "Let me give you my card.  If you change your mind, you can give me a call."  He
gave Mulder a wink.  "Hey, you can call me if you just wanna talk.  You've got one hell of a sexy voice."

Mulder glanced at the card for a split second.  There was only a number typed onto the plain white surface.  No name, no
decoration, only a phone number.  He looked up, but the stranger wasn't there.  Spinning, he found the man heading for the door.

"Hey, I didn't get a name!"  Mulder shouted.

The stranger stood framed in the open doorway, smiling widely.  "Call me Jack," he said, then was gone.

Mulder didn't know what to think of this.  The entire encounter was baffling.  Who was that man?  And what company had he
been representing?  With a roll of his eyes, Mulder opened a drawer in his desk and tossed the card in, deciding to put the matter
out of mind.  Only the niggling thought in the back of his mind kept him from tossing it out altogether.

Within a week, the entire incident was forgotten and Mulder was meeting with a new partner, some red-headed woman by the
name of Dana Scully.




To Be Continued ...