Julie Fortune's "The Ghost of You" is a casefic that is also an X-File, and a very creepy one, too. At only a little over 10,000 words, it's less daunting than some of the other fics sitting in the nomination post. In structure, it reminds me very much of the much earlier fic by Jane Mortimer, "The Sin Eater." Mortimer's fic might even have influenced it, who knows?
In any case, the prose is high caliber because the writer is a pro, who has published novels under several pseuds. She even published a tie-in for Stargate SG-1 under her fandom penname, "Sacrifice Moon." It's very good.
Here's a short excerpt from near the beginning of the fic. Mulder and Scully are at the crime scene in Restonville, West Virginia.
Strobe flashes from a wandering photographer lit up the interior. It was nothing more than more grass and mud, and in the middle –
Mulder blinked. "What the hell – "
Scully stepped forward, went to one knee next to the nude body. It was dug into the ground to a depth of nearly three feet, mud squashed up around it. It had been embedded in the mud, face down.
"Mulder." Scully gloved up and reached out to take hold of the woman’s hand, lifting it by the thumb.
Hands did not move that way. Not like – empty sacks, the fingers bending like rubber, no stiffness to it at all.
Boneless. Scully lifted higher. The arm followed the hand, a piece of dead spaghetti.
"Christ," one of the deputies said softly. Detective Harmon didn’t say anything at all, but his face paled. Scully carefully, almost reverently, let the woman’s hand fall back in place.
"Can we turn her over?" she asked.
"Yeah," Harmon said faintly. "We got all the pictures. Better you than me."
She looked at Mulder. Drafted. Nobody wanted to help – twelve deputies and forensic specialists crowded in the room, and every shoulder was pressed firmly against canvas. Mulder tried for a cool expression and took hold of the dead woman’s shoulder.
It felt like a cut of meat at the supermarket. Boneless. He swallowed hard as the body folded down the middle, like a paper doll. Scully helped him get her all the way over and in something like a normal position.
She had no face. Whatever bone structure had been present was obliterated, the face a mass of soft tissue, ruptured like something pulled up from the ocean too fast. No eyes. No teeth, either; the mouth, or what had been the mouth, shifted like jelly, and there were audible gulps from the others in the room.
"Scully?" Mulder cleared his throat. "I take it she’s real."
Scully has a theory, Mulder has a different one. There's thunder and lightening, reports of lights in the sky. They'll identify the body and...I don't want to give it away. It's a ghost story, but with a couple of twists.
You can the read the fic two different places. I like the link at the internet archive that's from her old website because I can copy, paste and print it for reading. I hate reading on computer screens.
At Fanfic for the Fearless via the Wayback Machine: "The Ghost of You" by Julie Fortune
. You can find her other fic there, too, if you're interested.
And at the Enigmatic Doctor's site in one long narrow column: The Ghost of You
She's deleted her non-fandom livejournal, and let her fandom website go down, but juliefortune
is still there, and she left her gmail address on her last post.
The nomination post is always open for your suggestions. Thanks to everyone who helps keep this site running and (relatively) active, with your comments here, and your links on other social media sites.