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Disclaimer: I own nothing from either the X-Files or from Harry Potter. *pause* Actually, can I lay claim to David Duchovny and/or Daniel Radcliffe, by any chance? No? Rats.

There was a knock on the door of the small office in the basement of the FBI building in Washington, D.C.; and the room’s sole occupant at the moment, a redheaded woman poring over some paperwork, looked up. “Come in,” she called.

The door opened, and a tall, dark-haired man strode in. “So, what’s the news, Scully?” he asked the woman as he sat down at an adjoining desk. “Did Skinner assign us a new case yet?”

Dana Scully glanced at her paperwork again, then shifted in her seat to see her partner better. She looked tired—but then, ever since she had returned to work after being abducted by aliens, she always looked a bit peaky. “Yes, he did, Mulder,” she replied, tossing him a thin file folder. “Hot off the press from this morning. Here’s the case summary.”

Fox Mulder opened the file, read through it once, blinked, and read through it again. “Hang on—he’s assigning us a murder case? Of an American diplomat with the US Embassy in London? Top priority?” he sputtered. “But—we’re the X-Files! Paranormal events! Why isn’t this going to Homicide or something?”

“It’s the cause of murder that’s the rub,” Scully sighed, shaking her head as she stared at the folder before her. “I haven’t made heads or tails out of it for the past hour. The victim seems to have gone into cardiac arrest; but he has a spot-clean bill of health, even from the autopsy.”

“Except for the fact that he’s not breathing anymore,” Mulder quipped.

“Precisely. That’s why we need to find out what happened, and who did this to him, before we pass it on to higher up.”

“Any traces of poison? Any sign of a fight?” Mulder was already booting up his computer, preparing to search the database. “And give me the guy’s name again, while you’re at it.”

“No, no, and Lazarus Mortimer Hendrickson.” Scully riffled through the paperwork on her desk. “I got a copy of the autopsy examination, and they couldn’t find a single thing wrong with the deceased, except that he’s dead.”

“La-za-rus. Mor-ti-mer. Hen-drick-son.” Mulder typed in the words slowly before pressing ENTER. “Geez, the guy had worse parents than I did, to get a name that depressing.”

Scully refrained from comment, as the text that was rolling onto Mulder’s screen was more worthy of her attention. She leaned over the back of Mulder’s chair to get a closer look.

“Got him in one,” Mulder said proudly. “Though, with a name like that, what more could you expect?”

“‘Lazarus Mortimer Hendrickson,’” Scully read. “‘Date of birth: May 18, 1955, time unknown. Date of death: March 19, 1995, time unknown. Age at death: 39. Nationality: British born, naturalized U.S. citizen. Cause of death: Suspected cardiac arrest.’ Mulder, check out this picture.” She passed him a small photograph from her files.

Mulder studied the picture, a snapshot of the crime scene taken before the body had been moved to the morgue. “He looks like he’s just been scared to death,” he announced after a few moments. “If it weren’t for the fact that that is so blatantly impossible, I would’ve said he got killed by a jack-in-the-box.”

Scully snorted. “Yes, well, that’s what EVERYONE who’s looked at that picture has said so far, more or less,” she said dryly. “Though, your cause of death is infinitely more creative than others. Robertson from Autopsy thought someone had jumped out of Mortimer’s closet with a bedsheet over his head and yelled ‘Boo!’ at the man.”

“Right. Back to the case,” Mulder coughed.

“‘Victim found in Room 949 of the Four Seasons Hotel in London, England, U.K.,’” Scully continued, ignoring Mulder’s mock gasps of “How come X-Files can’t stay at a hotel like that!” “‘No bloodstains on clothing or on surrounding carpet or furniture. Noticeable look of shock or fear on victim’s face. Eyes open, rigor mortis unnaturally severe for time of death. No visible external or internal injuries, no toxins other than alcohol present in bloodstream at time of autopsy. Bed rumpled and obviously slept in. Half-drunk shot-glasses and empty bottle of whiskey on coffee table next to victim suggest presence of a visitor familiar with victim before or around time of death. Wood fragments scattered on carpeting near victim’s hands. Fragments found to have fingerprints of victim as well as of one other unknown male. Homicide suspected, but weapon and suspect remain unknown.’”

Mulder leaned back in his chair for many moments after Scully had finished reading, contemplating the ceiling in silence. “Did the wood fragments kill him?” he suddenly asked.

Scully sighed. “Mulder, the guy’s skin was perfectly intact. Didn’t even have a sliver on his finger,” she said resignedly as she moved back to her own desk. “He wasn’t bashed over the head, or stabbed, or strangled, or what-have-you that you could possibly do with a stick of wood. Nothing. The guy just…died.”

“He obviously didn’t JUST die. He was killed, Scully, even you can see that,” Mulder retorted. “Now. Any idea as to the identity of the drinking buddy?”

“Well, not completely sure, but I think we have a few suspects,” Scully replied as she looked though some more photographs. “Here’s some pictures of the victim’s address book, found on the bedside table. Every one of the names in here have UK addresses…except for this one, he has a place near Manassas.”

Mulder scooted closer and snatched the photo from Scully’s desk. “Philip Parkinson. Right. It’s a start,” he said thoughtfully as he went to his phone to begin making travel arrangements.

Mulder and Scully stood side-by-side in the shadow of an imposing manor, one that rested on the rolling green fields near the once-bloody battlefield of Manassas, Virginia. Their car was left at the gate as per the request of the scratchy-voiced groundskeeper who lived near the entrance; and so the two FBI agents had walked the half-mile long drive in relative (shocked) silence.

“Wow. Whatever this guy does, he sure lives in style,” Mulder opined with a low whistle. “What’d you dig up on him?”

“Surprisingly, almost nothing,” Scully murmured as she continued to move closer to the door, Mulder following her. “He owns some sort of trading business in Britain, but almost no records in the US except for the deed to this house. I’m guessing this guy’s from an old family with even older wealth.”

“You can say that again,” Mulder muttered. Before either could raise their hand to knock, a well-dressed butler opened the door for them and bowed deeply.

“Good day, sir and madam. Master Parkinson is in his study,” the butler said in a crisp, high-class British accent as he briskly led the two deeper into the well-lit house. His heels clicked merrily on the marble floor, and it wasn’t long before he ushered Mulder and Scully into a bright room that overlooked a blooming courtyard. “Please, do make yourself at home. Master Parkinson will be with you shortly.”

After the butler had bowed and left the room, Mulder turned to Scully with a quirked eyebrow. They stared at each other for several moments, glanced around at their richly-decorated surroundings, then looked at each other again. “Either Parkinson’s business does well beyond our wildest dreams, or his family dives into money Scrooge McDuck-style,” Mulder commented dryly.

“I’d like to think it’s a little bit of both, actually.”

Mulder and Scully turned around to face the new speaker, a portly man with salt-and-pepper hair who part-waddled his way into the room. He was dressed in an old-fashioned British suit and waistcoat, and he gladly oomphed himself into a chair near the door even as he gestured for the two agents to sit.

“Philip Parkinson, at your service,” he said, his voice a deep, puffing baritone, his accent no less classy than his butler’s. “FBI, you said? Well, well, glad to help in any way I can…and you are?”

“My name is Mulder, and this is my partner Scully,” Mulder said, flashing his badge as he sat down on a plump ottoman. Scully remained standing for a few moments longer; she was occupied with inspecting a gilt-framed photograph on the mantle above the fireplace in the room.

“You have family?” she observed as she too moved to sit down. Parkinson nodded, his bottlebrush mustache quivering.

“Yes, married and with one daughter.” Parkinson held up his left hand to reveal an ornate gold band on his ring finger. “They’re over in England now…my little Pansy goes to a private boarding school. Doing quite well there, I dare say.” Parkinson cleared his throat and glanced meaningfully at the two agents sitting before him. “So. How may I help you today?”

Mulder pulled out a cropped photograph of the murdered man and passed it to Parkinson. “Do you recognize this man?” Mulder asked, watching Parkinson closely.

The chubby man paled, and the photo trembled wildly in his hand. “Of—of course,” he stammered. “Lazarus Hendrickson. We were schoolmates back in the day…I’ve visited him a time or two, even, when we’re in London or the States at the same time.” Parkinson looked at first Mulder, then Scully, with fear in rounded eyes. “Is he really dead?” he whispered.

“I’m afraid so, Mr. Parkinson—and we’re afraid this might have been a murder,” Scully said softly, taking the picture back from Parkinson and tucking it into her coat pocket. “But it would help us if you could tell us anything about Mr. Hendrickson that might help us find his killer…any unhappy business associates, any failed marriages, maybe…”

But Parkinson was already shaking his head. “Lazarus never married, and I never heard anything untoward about or against him,” he said with a heavy sigh. “But I’m afraid I cannot help you any further. I spend most of my time here, in the States, while Lazarus was more often back in England. I realize it might be out of your jurisdiction...but perhaps it might be worth your while to travel to Britain. I can give you an address where Lazarus spent a lot of his free time, and maybe someone there might be better suited to help you.”

Mulder and Scully glanced at each other. “Traveling isn’t an issue when we’re trying to bring justice for one of our own,” Scully said. “We’d appreciate anything you can give us.”

“Of course. It’s just a small little pub, right on Charing Cross Road…”

At that very moment, thousands of miles away in a small tower room in a castle on the moors of Scotland, a bespectacled woman bundled up in layer upon layer of shawls and scarves was peering into a crystal ball while surrounded by a dozen young boys and girls. Her bracelets and earrings jangled eerily as she moved closer to the ball to get a better look, and the boy closest to her shied away uneasily before she could get an inch closer to him.

“I see it! Look, class, the fog is parting!” Sybill Trelawney cried eagerly, never tearing her eyes from the crystal ball. “Jensen, tell me what you see…”

The boy who had pulled back slowly leaned forward and frowned. “I still see just fog, Professor. Was I supposed to see someth—Professor?”

Jensen’s eyes had moved from the glass to his teacher’s face, which had suddenly gone rigid. Her eyes no longer focused on the glass ball, instead seeming to see right through the walls of the castle and away into the mists that covered the moor outside. “Professor Trelawney? Is—is something the matter?” Jensen asked the woman cautiously.

No one, not Jensen nor any of the other students in the room, were prepared for the words that came out of Sybill Trelawney’s mouth, the harsh and deep baritone so unlike her normal, dreamy self.

“In the time of the ram, there shall come to the hidden hearth two of the rebelléd land…”

A/N: Ah, the X-Files. I've only seen a few episodes from Sci-Fi reruns, sadly, but I've always held some affection for Mulder and Scully. So when they came out with the new movie "I Want To Believe" (which I haven't actually gone to see yet, sadly,), I was inspired to write a Potterverse crossover of X-Files. What happens when paranormal meets magic? We'll see...

Hope you've enjoyed this intro, and please leave a review behind...even if you hated it. :P

Cheers, Regina

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