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The words stick in her mind like thorns, though she's had
the last 36 hours--preparation time for this OPR proceeding--to make them
seem familiar, reasonable: she's resigning.
Not giving up, but repositioning. Adjustments are required to any course, as every captain's daughter knows. For five years they sailed; finally they reached the edge of the world.
She counters the drone of the blank-faced panel with an inner litany of her own: redirection, purpose, contribution. Mulder will be fine. He got by before she came along.
Standing, she nods, turns smoothly, revealing nothing.
Skinner and Mulder huddle in conference in the hall. When Skinner leaves, she recites the rehearsed words, her reasonable reasons.
Mulder's mouth opens, soft, uncomprehending. But it's realism, needed clarity. She's only hindered him with her disbelief.
Finally he turns away, heading for the conference room door.
Looking down, she spies his jacket on the bench. She bites her lip, hesitates.
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