census worker Howard Salt hops over the fence at the White House,
and a squadron of Secret Service agents ambushes him. "The aliens
are taking over the United States!" he exclaims. Suddenly a gunshot
goes off, and the agents realize Salt has accidentally shot himself.
Before succumbing to death, he hands one agent a CD-ROM with the
words "Fight the Future" written on it.
In his hospital
room, Mulder puts his hand on his face and chest scars, seeing
flashbacks of the alien torture he endured. Scully interrupts
these visions when she tells him that he is completely healthy
and miraculously healed of whatever brain disorder he may have
suffered. She takes him back to his apartment, which is still
intact. "I don't know if you'll ever understand what it was like,"
a visibly moved Scully acknowledges. Mulder, however, is still
unsettled, not knowing how he fits in his newly restored life.
Doggett are summoned to Kersh's office to be briefed about Mulder's
reinstatement to the X-files. Because of Doggett's success rate
of arrests, Kersh is prepared to deny Mulder's application. He
orders the two to tell Mulder that he is off the X-files. Doggett
resists and Kersh threatens to shut down the X-files altogether.
Skinner and Scully come to Mulder's apartment to bring him the
bad news. Mulder first learns of Agent Doggett's assignment to
the X-files and realizes that they have all become pawns in some
larger conspiracy. He gets up to get dressed, telling Scully and
Skinner, "For the first time, I feel like getting back to work."
At a Federal
Correction Facility in West Virginia, a trusty brings Absalom
a book entitled "The Coming Apocalypse." Inside is a newspaper
clipping about Howard Salt being killed when he jumped the White
House gate. Later, as the prisoners work on a roadside gang, Absalom
breaks away and escapes into the woods. That night, Doggett returns
home to find Absalom waiting for him. Absalom checks the back
of the agent's neck for traces of reptilian-looking alien vertebrae.
"You're going to spread the word," he tells Doggett before kidnapping
him. From the FBI, Scully tries unsuccessfully to reach Doggett
while Skinner briefs his task force on the hunt for Absalom. Skinner
tells the agents that the man's claims of alien invasion are to
be taken seriously. He shows them a photo of the words "Fight
the Future" scrawled on Absalom's cell wall. Scully and Skinner
find Mulder in the X-files office. He has picked out Howard Salt's
face in an Absalom cult photo and informs them that Salt was a
multiple abductee. Mulder is convinced that the man was killed
for what he knew. Mulder and Scully sneak into the FBI Evidence
Room to discover Howard Salt's laptop computer has its entire
memory filled with an encrypted program. Mulder removes the hard
With a gun
taped to the small of his back, Doggett enters the Federal Statistics
Center. Absalom's hand is on the trigger. When passing the security
guard, Doggett notices the x-ray scanner and warns Absalom that
they will be stopped. Absalom pushes Doggett on, saying that he
is looking for proof that aliens are "already here, among us."
Security guards quickly surround them, and Doggett is shocked
when they shoot Absalom, nearly missing Doggett's head. Later,
when Doggett briefs Skinner on the previous events, Mulder bursts
into the office. Doggett is about to introduce himself when Mulder
attacks him. He blames Doggett for getting Absalom killed, suspecting
that he is part of the conspiracy to hide the truth.
apartment, the Lone Gunmen tap into Salt's hard drive and unearth
file directories from the Statistics Center. Fifteen minutes after
Salt's death, computer firewalls had gone up around the facility.
Mulder is convinced that he is onto something in those files.
However, even if they were to uncover a password, the firewalls
would block them from opening the files. The pass code can only
be used in the secured facility itself. Much to the consternation
of Mulder, the Gunmen agree with Scully that they have hit a dead
end. Meanwhile, Doggett secretly meets with his informant Knowle
Rohrer (last seen in 8X08) to ask why Absalom was shot in cold
blood. Doggett suspects that he was merely used to get the man
killed. Rohrer tells him that there are three words he should
know. Doggett meets Scully outside Mulder's apartment, asking
her to give Mulder information he has recently learned. Salt was
carrying a diskette that he wanted to give to the President. The
password on it contains three words: Fight the Future. Scully
goes back into Mulder's apartment but is hesitant to tell him
what Doggett told her. She fears that he will get in over his
head. Skinner rushes to Doggett's house that night with urgent
news about Mulder having some kind of password to access names
tracked by the government. When Doggett admits to giving Scully
the password, Skinner begins to question whose side Doggett is
on. He is even more concerned because he can't contact either
Scully or Mulder. "You're gonna have to trust me on this," Doggett
tells the Assistant Director and sets out after them alone.
Scully outside the Statistics Center and orders her to leave.
"I may have set you up," he pleads. He runs inside to get Mulder
out. The Gunmen, meanwhile, have bypassed the security system
to allow Mulder access to the building undetected. They lead him
into the databank and Mulder types the words "Fight the Future"
in the computer. Doggett bangs on the glass door, but Mulder ignores
him. "Your life's in danger!" Doggett yells and blows out the
window with his gun. Doubting Doggett's intentions, Mulder says
that he believes the government is using the census to protect
aliens in hiding. Armed military troops storm the building, and
Mulder accuses Doggett of setting him up. Doggett tries to convince
him that really they have both been set up and are in danger.
The Gunmen direct Mulder and Doggett toward an air duct in the
ceiling, and they escape.
covertly meets with Rohrer and accuses the informant of manipulating
him. "You need me worse than you know," Rohrer says emphatically.
He tells Doggett that the truth lies in the X-files. An angry
Doggett walks away. When Rohrer leans over to the water fountain,
enlarged alien vertebrae pop up under the skin on his neck.
Original Air Date: 04/08/01
Written by Chris Carter & Frank Spotnitz
Directed by Tony Wharmby
DAVID DUCHOVNY as Special Agent Fox Mulder
GILLIAN ANDERSON as Special Agent Dana Scully
ROBERT PATRICK as Special Agent John Doggett
Mitch Pileggi as A.D. Walter Skinner
Adam Baldwin as Knowle Rohrer
James Pickens, Jr. as Deputy Director Kersh
Tom Braidwood as Frohike
Dean Haglund as Langly
Bruce Harwood as Byers
Judson Scott as Absalom
Nelson Mashita as Dr. Lim
Gary Bristow as Howard Salt
Joe Basile as Lead Guard
Ric Sarabia as Prison Trustee
Dwight Hicks as Prison Armed Guard
J.C. Murad as Intercom Guard