The X-Files Origins: Sneak Peek

The X-Files Origins: Sneak Peek

by Kami Garcia, Jonathan Maberry

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Overview

The X-Files Origins: Sneak Peek by Kami Garcia, Jonathan Maberry

Read an excerpt from both X-FILES ORIGINS books for free!

How did Fox Mulder become a believer? How did Dana Scully become a skeptic? The X-Files Origins has the answers.

The X-Files Origins: Agent of Chaos explores the teen years of Fox Mulder, the beloved character depicted in the cult-favorite TV show The X-Files. His story is set in the spring of 1979, when serial murder, the occult, and government conspiracy were highlighted in the news.

The book will follow Mulder as he experiences life-changing events that set him on the path to becoming an FBI agent.

The X-Files Origins: Devil's Advocate will explore the teen years of Dana Scully, the beloved character depicted in the cult-favorite TV show The X-Files. Her story is set in the spring of 1979, when serial murder, the occult, and government conspiracy were highlighted in the news.

The book will follow Scully as she experiences life-changing events that set her on the path to becoming an FBI agent.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781250145628
Publisher: Imprint
Publication date: 11/29/2016
Sold by: Macmillan
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 32
Sales rank: 402,211
File size: 2 MB
Age Range: 15 - 18 Years

About the Author

Kami Garcia is a #1 New York Times bestselling and Bram Stoker–nominated author and the coauthor of the Beautiful Creatures and Dangerous Creatures novels. Her solo series, the Legion, includes the instant New York Times bestseller Unbreakable and its sequel, Unmarked. Her first contemporary romance The Lovely Reckless publishes in October 2016.
Kami was a teacher for seventeen years and coauthored her first novel on a dare from seven of her students. If she isn’t busy watching Supernatural, Kami can teach you how to escape from a pair of handcuffs or bake a Coca-Cola cake. Kami lives in Maryland with her family and their dogs, Spike and Oz.

Jonathan Maberry is a New York Times bestselling author, multiple Bram Stoker Award winner, and Marvel Comics writer. He's the author of many novels for adults and young adults, including Assassin's Code, Dead of Night, Patient Zero, and Rot&Ruin. His nonfiction books cover topics ranging from martial arts to zombie pop culture. He lives in Del Mar, California, with his wife, Sara, and their son, Sam.


Kami Garcia is a #1 New York Times, USA Today, and international bestselling author, and the coauthor of the Beautiful Creatures and Dangerous Creatures novels. Her solo works include the Bram Stoker–nominated novels Unbreakable and Unmarked (The Legion series), and The Lovely Reckless, a standalone contemporary romance.

Kami was a teacher for seventeen years and coauthored her first novel on a dare from seven of her students. If she isn’t busy watching Supernatural, Kami can teach you how to escape from a pair of handcuffs or bake a Coca-Cola cake. Kami lives in Maryland with her family and their dogs, Spike and Oz.


Jonathan Maberry is a New York Times bestselling author and 5-time Bram Stoker Award-winner. He writes in multiple genres including suspense, thriller, horror, science fiction, fantasy, action, and steampunk, for adults, teens and middle grade. His works include the Joe Ledger thrillers, Rot&Ruin, Mars One, and Captain America, which is in development for a feature film. He writes comics for Marvel, Dark Horse and IDW and is the editor of such high-profile anthologies as The X-Files, V-Wars, Out of Tune, Baker Street Irregular, Nights of the Living Dead, and Scary Out There. He lives in Del Mar, California.

Read an Excerpt

The X-Files Origins

Agent of Chaos


By Kami Garcia, Jonathan Maberry

Macmillan Children's Publishing Group

Copyright © 2017 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-250-14562-8



CHAPTER 1

Classified until 01/03/2017


Washington, DC March 30, 1979, 3:32 PM


Packs of teenagers rushed past the black sedan parked across from the high school, unaware they were being watched from behind the car's tinted windows. Pumped for the official start of spring break, jocks wearing Wilson High jerseys carried girls on their shoulders, while other guys horsed around in the street, showing off for girls who pretended not to notice them. Most of the teens didn't even notice the car. Black vehicles with tinted windows were as common as pigeons in Washington, DC — home base of the Secret Service, the CIA, and the FBI.

The man in the passenger seat scanned the face of every boy jaywalking across the road, looking for one in particular. "No sign of him yet," he said, directing his comment at the older man behind the wheel.

"A powerful observation, Reginald," his boss deadpanned. He sounded like someone's grandfather, and next to Reggie, he looked like one.

Even if the boss ditched the three-piece suit and conservative side part, he couldn't hide the deep lines carved into his pale skin like scars or the worn look behind his cold blue eyes. Reggie's dark-brown skin was as smooth as a baby's butt. His bushy black mustache kept him from looking like a college kid, and his short Afro tucked under a tweed newsboy cap complemented the fitted white shirt, red blazer, and flared black slacks he wore to mark him as a man with style.

"Look how oblivious those kids are." Reggie watched the teens with a pang of envy. "It's like they think nothing can touch them. Remember how that felt?"

"No. I was never an idiot." The boss tapped his thumb against the steering wheel without disturbing the funnel of ash on the end of the cigarette in his hand. "People see what they want to see, which is generally nothing important."

Reggie continued to search the horde of kids. "There's no way we could've missed him."

"Your powers of deduction never disappoint me." His boss took a drag from the Morley, then exhaled slowly. Reggie ignored the cloud of smoke making his eyes water and focused on the funnel of ash, waiting for it to break off.

"The prodigal son appears." The boss pointed his cigarette across the street at two boys walking down the sidewalk with backpacks slung over their shoulders.

Fox Mulder was a good-looking kid — lean like a swimmer, with a look that was the perfect balance between clean-cut and I-don't-give-a-crap. His dark brown hair hit just past the collar of his striped shirt, and the front was long enough to cover his eyes a little. Girls ate up that kind of thing. He stared into space as he shuffled along, holding a crumpled piece of paper.

The other boy was a different story. His straight blond hair hung in his face, as if he was growing out a bad bowl haircut. The kid's dirt-brown T-shirt featured a faded image of a scene from Star Wars, and his jeans were so long that the frayed bottoms dragged on the sidewalk.

The kid was talking nonstop, gesturing wildly and buzzing around his friend like a housefly. From the look of it, he could use a strip of duct tape to cover his mouth.

Reggie wasn't a fan of talkers; they were a liability. "Who's the short kid with Bill Mulder's son?"

"Are you familiar with the concept of research?" The boss finally tapped the cigarette against the edge of the ashtray, and the long funnel of ash broke off in one piece, as if on command. He crushed the butt and aimed his watery-blue eyes directly into Reggie's dark-brown ones. "Let me enlighten you. It's a practice professionals use to obtain information so we don't have to rely on assumptions."

Reggie was tempted to fire back a condescending remark of his own, but the boss would make him regret it later. The organization they worked for was built on the backs of men and women with ice running through their veins — individuals willing to do whatever needed to be done, regardless of the cost — and the smoking man next to him was one of them.

"What's my assignment?" Reggie wanted to get down to business. "Do you want me to collect Bill's son?"

Collect sounded more civilized than abduct.

"Taking Samantha Mulder was partly insurance to keep her father from talking." The Boss opened a new pack of cigarettes and flicked his wrist, freeing one from the box. "And we all had to make sacrifices. But it would break Bill if we took his son, too, and right now we need him. The Project is at a critical stage that requires people with specific skills, and Bill Mulder is one of them."

The boss lit another Morley and continued talking, with the cigarette tucked in the corner of his mouth. "So we need to keep an eye on both Bill and his son. Follow the kid around and let me know if you see anything interesting. We're also assessing Fox for potential recruitment."

Tailing a high school kid during spring break was a crap job, but Reggie wasn't high enough in the food chain yet to complain about it. So instead he asked, "Who the hell names their kid Fox? His parents must hate him."

"Bill and Teena are too busy hating each other. They were barely speaking when Bill moved out of the house in the fall." The boss stared out the window, tracking Fox Mulder's progress down the street. "The timing was perfect, actually. We stepped in and relocated Bill from Martha's Vineyard to DC so he could work on the Project full-time. Fox came with him."

"I'm surprised the kid's mom let him go," Reggie said. "My aunt and uncle divorced when I was young, and they butted heads about everything."

"If I gave you the impression that I want to swap childhood memories, let me clarify. I don't." He took a long drag from his cigarette, and a new funnel of ash began to form. "Interestingly enough, sending Fox to live with his dad was Teena's idea."

"Doesn't that seem strange?"

"It does." He exhaled and a ribbon of smoke curled its way toward Reggie, who finally coughed and reached for the window handle. The boss snapped his fingers and pointed at the glass. "It stays up."

Reggie ignored the burning sensation in his throat. He refused to appear weak in front of a man who had referred to weakness as a disease during a debriefing. "Do you think the kid's mom knows something?"

"The jury is still out. But when the verdict comes in, I'll deal with Teena Mulder personally." Another trail of smoke snaked from the Boss's chapped lips. "You focus on Fox. Update me directly — and only me."

"So no reports?"

"Keep them to a minimum. We don't want to leave any breadcrumbs. So from this point on, you no longer have a name. Sign your reports as 'X.'"


Woodrow Wilson High School 3:47 PM

Fox Mulder stared at the C written at the top of his history test as he walked down the sidewalk with Gimble. His friend hadn't stopped talking since the bell rang at the end of sixth period, officially signaling the beginning of spring break. That was the thing about Gimble — nothing fazed the guy. He would never waste his time fixating on one lousy grade, while Mulder couldn't let it go.

After three tests that had all followed the same format — thirty multiple-choice questions taken directly from the textbook and twenty short-answer questions — their history teacher threw the class a curveball and switched to essay questions.

"I don't get it." Gimble glanced at Mulder's paper. "Didn't you read the chapters?"

"Yeah."

"Then what gives?" Gimble asked. "With that superpower of yours, you should've aced it."

Mulder usually didn't tell people about his photographic memory, but he couldn't hide it from Gimble once they became friends. Quoting entire scenes from Star Trek episodes verbatim gave him away.

"American history textbooks are biased," Mulder said. "Lots of information in them is inaccurate."

Gimble clapped a palm against his forehead. "Dude? Tell me you didn't write that on the test?"

"Why was John Hancock's signature the biggest one on the Declaration of Independence?" Mulder asked him without missing a beat.

"Wait. I know this one." Gimble snapped his fingers as he tried to remember. "It was something about Hancock wanting the British — or the king — to see his name first."

"Nicely done," Mulder said. "And your answer would be incorrect. John Hancock was practicing calligraphy and wrote his signature on a piece of parchment. A few weeks later, Thomas Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence around Hancock's signature to save paper."

"No way." Gimble shook his head and his straight blond hair swung back and forth over his eyes like windshield wipers.

"It's true. Look it up."

Gimble scratched his head, considering it. "Whatever. You couldn't just write down the junk from the book?"

Mulder shrugged. "Not the stuff that's wrong."

"Who cares?"

I do.

Mulder was sick of people feeding him lies. He had to choke them down at home, but he refused to do it at school, too.

"Will your dad be pissed about your grade?"

Mulder snorted. "He doesn't even know I had a test."

"You're lucky. The Major is always asking me questions. I wouldn't be surprised if he had a copy of the class syllabus."

Mulder had never met Gimble's dad, but from what his friend had told him, the man sounded intense. Not many fathers made their sons call them "the Major."

"Your dad can't be that bad," Mulder said. "Not many people have a wide-field reflecting telescope at home."

Gimble grinned. "Okay ... the telescope is pretty rad. A friend of the Major's from the Air Force got ahold of it for him. It's nothing like the amateur-grade models they sell in stores."

"Seriously? I had no idea." Mulder laid on the sarcasm. "I'm completely unfamiliar with Newtonian infinite-axis telescopes."

"Show-off."

Mulder laughed. "Are you sure your dad won't mind if I try it out?"

"I told you he said it was cool."

"Did he actually use the word cool?" Mulder asked with a straight face. "Because if he didn't, I might need some clarification."

"Has anyone ever told you that you have a weird sense of humor?" Gimble cracked a smile. The guy had no poker face.

"All the time." That part was true.

Gimble flicked his head to the side just enough to get the long hair out of his eyes — something he did at least fifty times a day. "Let's go see a guy about a telescope."

Mulder picked up his pace. As a kid, he wanted to be an astronaut when he grew up. He was ten years old when his dad told him that it would never happen. Astronauts had to pass a vision test that included an assessment for color blindness, and Mulder couldn't distinguish between red and green. It didn't stop him from wanting to go into space.

"There's a bunch of other stuff I want to show you, too." Gimble scrambled ahead and turned around to walk backward, facing Mulder. "I've got forty-eight Star Trek cards, not including doubles. No one counts doubles, you know? And I have the Dr. Bones McCoy card that came out three years ago, in mint condition."

"That's cool." Mulder was used to epic levels of Star Trek devotion. Phoebe, his best friend back home in Martha's Vineyard, collected the trading cards, too, along with everything else related to the TV show or the movie.

"I've got something even cooler." Gimble stumbled on a crack in the pavement, but managed to catch himself. "Well, maybe not cooler, but almost as cool. Or equally as cool," he said, as if the Star Trek gods had tripped him for making the comment.

"Like what?"

Gimble turned onto a residential street lined with brownstones. Instead of answering the question, he stopped in front of the second house. "This is it."

"I hope you have good junk food." Mulder followed his friend up the steps. "All we have at home is sunflower seeds."

Gimble hesitated at the door. "My dad is kind of strange. I told you that, right?"

"At least a hundred times," Mulder said. "Including thirty seconds ago. Whose dad isn't?"

"Kind of is probably an understatement. And all the news reports about that missing kid are making him worse."

Billy Christian — that was the little boy's name.

For a moment, Mulder couldn't catch his breath. It felt like someone was squeezing all the air out of his lungs, and then the feeling passed like it always did. Mulder realized Gimble was still talking.

"The military really screwed him up, you know?"

"I get it." Mulder's mom was never the same after his younger sister, Samantha, disappeared almost five and half years ago. Every night she would put on her apron and prepare one of her specialties — meatloaf or a casserole — in an attempt to make it feel as if their family wasn't falling apart. She would sit at the kitchen table and read a magazine or clip coupons while she waited for the oven timer to go off. After the third time he found his mom sitting at the table, staring into space, while the timer buzzed and a casserole burned to a crisp in the oven ten feet away from her, Mulder learned to listen for the buzzer. But one night, he made the mistake of taking a shower before it went off. By the time he made it to the kitchen, the smoke alarm was blaring and a veil of black smoke had filled the kitchen. His mom sat in the midst of it all, her cheeks smudged with smoke.

Mulder swallowed hard and pushed away the memory. "Are we going inside or what?"

"I guess." Gimble took out his keys and started unlocking the five deadbolts on the door.

Mulder followed him inside, but he stopped cold just past the front hallway. It opened up into what Mulder assumed was a supposed to be the living room, but he wasn't sure because every square inch of the space — except for a sofa, a recliner, and a small patch of shag carpet in the center — was covered with junk.

No wonder Gimble hadn't invited him over before. Most people would've taken off the moment they walked in, but Mulder found it oddly fascinating.

"The Major saves everything." Gimble walked over to the television set and picked up a two-way radio sitting on top. He pressed the button on the side and spoke into it. "It's me. I'm home."

Static crackled through the speaker, followed by a man's gravely voice. "This is a secure line. Code words?"

Gimble rolled his eyes. "Eternal champion."

"Meet me at the extraction point at 1600."

"He means four o'clock," Gimble explained to Mulder before returning the two-way radio to its original location on top of the TV set. "Sorry about all that. If I don't 'report in' when I get home, the Major gets extreme."

Mulder wanted to know more, like what the eternal champion stuff was about, but Gimble sounded embarrassed. No big deal. Mulder wanted to check out everything in the crazy living room, anyway. A row of bookshelves held dozens of small cardboard boxes with masking tape labels, numbered VHS tapes, two shortwave radios, some kind of handheld transceiver or CB, a sextant, bowls of rocks, and dozens of boxes of cream-filled snack cakes. Mulder picked up a gray rock the size of his fist, examined it, and tossed it in his hand like a baseball. Nothing notable about it, as far as he could tell.

He moved on to the books, scanning the titles in some of the stacks: The Encyclopedia of Unexplained Phenomenon, Breaking the Crop Circle Code, Evolution and the Human Brain, The Truth About Abraham Lincoln's Assassination, Secrets of the Solar System, and Applied Astrophysics. There were a few titles Fox recognized — like A Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy,1984, and The Martian Chronicles — and at least half a dozen paperback copies of a book Mulder had never heard of called Stormbringer. Based on the long-haired albino warrior on the cover, it was probably a fantasy novel.

The room was packed, but Mulder realized the stuff was actually organized. Towers of newspapers and magazines were stacked against the walls according to publication and year, and a quick glance at other book stacks revealed that the texts were sorted by category, like physics, space exploration, natural disasters, American presidents, and ... aliens?

But what interested Mulder more than anything else in the room were the walls. Every inch of wallpaper was covered with newspaper clippings; maps marked with colored pushpins, connected by pieces of yellow string; and photos of what resembled crop circles and UFOs.

"What is all this?" Mulder stared at the wall, transfixed.

"The Major is always tracking something — natural disasters, meteors, unusual weather patterns, short wave radio transmissions. You name it." Gimble's cheeks turned red and he looked away. "Let's head to my room before the Major comes up from the basement. That's where he keeps his files."

"What kind of files?" Mulder genuinely wanted to know, but Gimble ignored the question and led him through the kitchen to a back staircase. Mulder pretended he didn't notice the bicycle lock wrapped around the refrigerator doors.

Gimble's bedroom was at the top of the steps.

"This is it," his friend said proudly as he opened the door.


(Continues...)

Excerpted from The X-Files Origins by Kami Garcia, Jonathan Maberry. Copyright © 2017 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation. Excerpted by permission of Macmillan Children's Publishing Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents

Contents

Title Page,
Copyright Notice,
The X-Files Origins: Agent of Chaos Sampler,
The X-Files Origins: Devil's Advocate Sampler,
About the Authors,
Copyright,

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