Title: Rude Awakening
Archive:Anywhere, but it has to have my name and e-mail address on it
Interesting doctors and nurses, a couple of unusual trauma cases, an intriguing case, a little bit of voodoo magic, and you got yourself an X-File.
Author's Note - Hey all!!! First of all, let's take care of some business. This fan-fic revolves around a storyline with ER, but please don't worry. For all the X- Philes who never watched ER and are reading this and vice versa (THANK YOU!!!!!!!), it will be explained in the story.
Cook County Community Cemetery
He killed my brother. And he's still alive. Yeah, life is fair. He hid behind his lawyers and tried to led a normal life. I knew the guilt was eating him alive. It's the perfect time for revenge. He will pay, just like the others. This is almost too perfect...
Chris Law stopped his task and wiped his brow. His body ached, but he knew he had to finish tonight. He looked around. Pitch black. What would you expect during midnight? He picked up his shovel and started digging again.
The shovel finally reached it. Chris sighed with relief and threw the shovel next to the enormous pile of dirt, located outside the hole he was in. He reached into his black pant's pocket and pulled out a small bag with white powder. With excitement and nervousness pumping through his blood, he climbed out the deep hole and opened the bag. He began pouring the contents inside the hole. He moved his hand, forming a picture with the powder.
"It's time, brother," Chris muttered. He started speaking in Hindi. A prayer. When he was done reciting, the coffin inside the hole, began to shake. Chris Law smiled. It's working!! The decaying wood breaks off and the hinges creaked with old age. The lid opened. Chris begins to laugh.
The flashlight on the ground, next to Chris, was shining towards a smooth slab of rock. A tombstone. It reads:
Cook County General ER
Nurse Carol Hathaway entered the not-so-busy ER. It was not a big surprise. The weather outside wasn't tempting to go out to. It was cold, windy and pouring rain. *I wish I could stay home.* She looked around and finds a few patients in the waiting room. A tired mom, holding a screaming baby. A guy in a business suit, holding his bleeding arm with a blood-stained cloth. An impatient teenager, banging his fist against the soda machine. Normal day? You can say that. Carol walked to the admit desk right in front of her, where she found Dr. Doug Ross (her *secret* boyfriend), the outrageously dressed desk attending, Randi and a fellow nurse with a heavy Spanish accent, Chuny.
"Hey, Carol," Doug said, casually, not looking up from his chart. Carol yawned.
"Girl, are you okay?" Chuny said, "You look awful."
"Thank you for noticing, Chuny. I'm exhausted from last night," Carol explained.
"From what, exactly?" Randi teased, looking at Dr. Ross. Carol gave her a look, then she turned around and headed for the lounge. Doug followed her.
"Coffee, I need coffee." Carol reached for her mug and pours steaming, black coffee and took a huge sip. Doug chuckled at this site.
"If I wasn't there last night and you're tired--Carol, are you cheating on me?"
"Can you blame me?" she smiled. "That El was driving me nuts. And one of my neighbors got a new dog, so... put it all together." Doug chuckled. "I'm so glad you find that amusing," Carol retorted.
"I didn't say anything," Doug defended himself.
All of a sudden, the lounge door flew open. A miserable Dr. Mark Greene entered and walked to his locker.
"Morning, Mark," Carol greeted, but Mark doesn't answer.
"Hey, buddy," Doug attempted, but he still doesn't answer. He just put his coat and stuff in his locker, got his lab coat and stethoscope and slams his locker shut. He turned around and left. "Nice talking to you, Mark," Doug said, half- jokingly.
Carol said with concern, "I hope he cheers up soon. He's going to snap if he doesn't."
"He already did, three times. He needs time. We just got to leave him alone."
"But we already did that, Doug. I can't just stand back and watch anymore."
"Me, neither," Ross said under his breath.
"Bon Dieu, I come to you in a time of need," Chris prayed. He looked up the dark warehouse, lit only by eight candles in front of him. He turned around to see his brother, Kenny. His tone changed. Instead of the "prayer" tone, he had his normal tone. "You sure?"
"Yeah!! How many times you gonna ask that??" Kenny was obviously getting impatient. He could tell his brother was hesitant, but he knew, deep down, Chris wanted to do this. Why else would you bring a brother back from the dead? However, he, not only sensed doubts, felt them too, growing inside him. But when Kenny thought about the people who held him back, the people who didn't believe, the anger was killing the doubts.
Chris and Kenny looked down and started praying in Hindi. They both could not believe what they had the power of doing, but there was no turning back. Their grandfather taught them well...
"I call my brother, Kenny, Ioa. Give him the power of revenge!!!" Chris exclaimed. As this was said, two of the eight candles were blown from an unnatural gust of wind. Chris and his brother knew what was going to happen.
And all they did was laugh....
The ambulance doors crashed open, as two paramedics wheeled in a teenage boy into the Cook County ER. Quick as a wink, Mark, Carol, newcomer Dr. Anna Del Amico and a newly-evolved Dr. John Carter rushed to aid the boy on the gurney.
"What is it?" Anna began.
One of the paramedics motioned his head back. "There's another one on the way."
"Randi, page Doug and Kerry," Mark ordered. Randi nodded and picked up the phone behind the admit desk. The four turned their attentions to the paramedics, as they wheel the kid to trauma 1.
"Joey Hewllet, age 16. Basketball player for Southside High School. GSW to the chest. He's in shock," the paramedic explained, as they lined up the gurney to the table in trauma 1. "Pressure's 50/30 and resp is 36."
"On my count," Greene said, calmly, "1, 2, 3." The four lift Joey to the table, while the paramedics leave.
Meanwhile, in trauma 2, Doug, Jeanie Boulet, Kerry Weaver and Nurse Haleh were with the second victim found with Joey Hewllet. He also had a gunshot wound to the chest.
"Pulse is 140," Jeanie announced. All of a sudden, a long, monotone beep escapes one of the machine.
"He's in fib!!" Dr. Ross exclaimed.
In trauma 1, Mark Greene gave up with the paddles and put them back on the crash cart. "Time of death," he looked at the clock on the wall, "11:05." Will it ever get easier for any of them?
Then something caught Mark's eye. On Joey's chest, an infinity sign appears out of nowhere. After a second it disappeared. What was that? Tattoo? Mark had a shocked face.
"What the hell was that?" Carol saw it, too.
Back in trauma 2, Doug also had no success with his patient.
"Time of death, 11:05," Doug said, solemnly. Then the he saw the same symbol on this boy's chest, like the one next door. And then, it disappeared. Doug looked up, with confusion and Carol, who's in trauma 1, looks at him, horrified.
"Seeds?" A packet of sunflower seeds were tossed right in front of her. Agent Dana Scully looked up, startled.
"Pass." She shook her head. Fox Mulder (Yes, 'Fox'. Odd name, huh?) dug inside the packet and grabs another seed and tossed it in his mouth. Then he closed the bag and tossed that to the back seat. As she suspected, the bag wasn't closed and seeds spills out. She looked at her partner and sighed.
"Mulder, remember? It's a rent-a-car." All he did was look at her and smile. Yes, they were here again. Another paranormal case that intrigued Spooky. And, again, he dragged his partner into it. It's strange. He's one of the greatest criminal analyst of the violent crime section and anyone would love to have this man as their partner, but all Scully could think about when she's around Mulder is the Twilight Zone. He is extremely intelligent and pretty handsome too, but he's a nut! Scully isn't complaining though; she loves getting into these debates with him and she knows they make a great team. Wonder what case we're off to...
"Hey, Scully. What do you know about voodoo?"
Voodoo? This was our case? She sighed. "Well, it's a religion of Haiti and has the elements of Roman Catholic. They worship the high God, Bon Dieu, and tries contacting their ancestors called Ioa. It's practiced in Cuba, Trinidad, Brazil and the Southern US."
"You've been doing homework, Scully," Mulder stated impressively, "but did you know it's now being practiced in Cook County?" He took his right hand off the steering wheel and reached to the back seat. He was clearly having trouble doing this, so Scully took control of the wheel. (See? A great team.) Mulder dusted all the seeds on top of the case file and made a bigger mess. He handed the file to Scully, as he grabbed hold of the steering wheel. "Here, read it."
"Save me the trouble."
"There has been a mysterious finding with two victims in the local ER. Two victims, Joey Hewlett and Andrew Hawkins, were brought into the County Emergency Room with the same gun shot wounds to the chest, during a high school basketball game. Both had the same wound and both died on the table at the same time, 11:05."
"I'm afraid to ask. Where's the voodoo? Where's the paranormal, Mulder?"
"On both their chest, the doctors and nurses saw something strange: an infinity sign. Then after a second of two, it disappeared."
"Has there been other x-files like this?" By the tone of Scully's voice, she knew the answer to this question and didn't want to be right. He nodded. "I still don't understand. There's nothing out of the ordinary here. Doctors and nurses in the ER treat GSWs all the time. And this 'infinity sign' have been an allergic reaction to any medication they gave to the victims."
Mulder added, nonchalantly, "Oh, did I mention that there were over 300 people at that game and none of them heard or saw anyone get shot? Or the autopsy showed no entry or exit wounds on the body?"
Scully suddenly looks interested. "No, Mulder. You didn't."
"Oops. Sorry. Must've slipped my mind." Mulder smiled.
Cook County ER
Agent Fox Mulder pushed the ambulance door open and guided Scully in by the small of her back. They looked around, familiarizing the place. It was pretty crowded with injured people. Doctors and nurses were running around, shouting orders and getting help.
"We need a stool culture in one!!" A nurse with a Spanish accent shouted.
"Chuny, can you speak up any louder?" asked another nurse sarcastically. This nurse had dark brown, curly hair, carrying a chart, her dark brown eyes were filled with exhaustion. Mulder noted her porcelain doll-like complexion, just like his partner. The nurse took notice of the two agents standing by. She walked up to them. "Can I help you two?"
"I'm Agent Scully and this is Agent Mulder," Scully said, flashing her badge. "We're here investigating the deaths of two basketball players that came in two days ago."
"I'm Carol Hathaway," Carol said, extending her hand and shaking the two agents' hands. "The FBI? It's not that serious, is it?"
"Well, the nature of the case was odd, so we decided to check it out," Mulder spoke up.
The nurse nodded. "I was there and yeah, everyone thought it was kind of weird. We were all interested how it happened." They walk to the admit desk.
"May I ask you a few questions about the trauma?"
"Sure, but can you hold on for a minute? I need to put this chart away." She walked around the admit desk, while Mulder and Scully talked about the case. They were blocking the window to the admit desk, while Mark walked up, gruffly. He tried to hand the chart to Jerry, but the FBI agents were in his way.
"Excuse me, "Dr. Greene huffed. "You're in my way."
"I'm sorry," Scully looked up.
"Listen, I don't know why you are here, but they waiting room is there." He pointed hard at the waiting area. Scully was taken back and Carol enters, just in time to hear Mark's greeting.
"Mark," Carol says, warningly. "Don't start."
"Carol, listen. I have important things to do and I'm sure they do, too. It would probably be best if we both weren't in their ways. Now, if you will excuse me, I have some patients to treat." He leaves, without saying anymore. They watch him leave. The agents have shocked expressions, while the nurse has a helpless expression.
"I'm really sorry about Dr. Greene. He's been in a lot of stress lately. Can we talk in the lounge?" Scully nods. Carol turns around and leads them to a room. The three enter the lounge, where a good-looking doctor in blue scrubs was pouring coffee.
"Uh, Agents Mulder and Scully from the FBI, this is Dr. Ross," Carol introduced. "They're here investigating the Hawkins and Hewlett case."
"Oh, the Imaginary-Bullet Case," Ross said, in realization.
"Do you name all your cases?" Scully asked.
"Just the weird ones. Don't you FBI people do the same thing?"
"Well, Dr. Ross, all we get are weird cases," Mulder explained. "You kinda lose track of all the names."
Scully spoke up. "Which trauma case were you in?"
"Oh, I was with Hawkins and Carol was helping Dr. Greene with Hewlett. Hawkins went into fib--"
"So did Hewlett," Carol interrupted.
"When we tried defibrillating him, Doug continued, "we had no luck--"
"Same here," the nurse interrupted again. "Then they both died the same time, by the same cause--"
"The sign just appeared out of nowhere," Doug interrupted her. "Then it disappeared."
During these answers, Mulder and Scully looked back and forth.
"What medications did you administer to the patients?" Scully asked.
"We didn't." Dr. Ross said it so simply, but it left more questions to be answered. "Before we could give any medication, they both went into cardiac fib."
"In your medical opinion, Dr. Ross," Mulder finally spoke up, "what do you think caused that unusual mark on his chest?"
"Working in an ER, I've seen many things, but this is the first. I have no idea what I saw."
"Do you believe that it was voodoo?" Oh, boy, thought Scully. Here he goes again.
"You're joking, right?" Doug says, almost laughing.
"We had recent cases like this, where it showed vague proof of voodoo. Even though it's vague, the evidence was there-"
"Did you receive the autopsy report yet?" Scully asked, trying to change the subject.
"As much as we're interested, we're not allowed to review those charts," Carol answered, still wondering what the tall, lanky agent just told them. "But you can get them. The pathology lab is in the basement floor."
"Besides the symbol on the chest," Mulder started, "do you remember anything else that struck you about this case?"
"Actually, yes," Nurse Hathaway said, surprised. "When we told the families, they both said the same thing. They said it was more sad that they both died of gunshot wounds, because that was their--"
"Greatest fear?" Mulder interrupted. The nurse, doctor and his partner looked at him with more shock.
"How did you know that, Agent Mulder?" Carol asked.
"In voodoo, followers usually use someone's greatest fear as the weapon."
"Weapon for what?" Doug asked incredulously.
Bbbrrrring!! Mulder picks up his cell phone, while Scully, Ross and Hathaway are talking about a case.
"Mulder... Where?... Who?..." Scully looks up at Mulder. "Kenny Law?..." Then Carol and Doug look at Mulder, when they hear the name. "Okay, we'll be there are soon as possible." Mulder hangs up and Doug starts asking the questions.
"Excuse me, Agent Mulder? I didn't mean to eavesdrop, but what about Kenny Law?"
"You know him?" Mulder became interested.
"Yeah, he was a patient here a couple of months ago, with gunshot wounds and died on the surgical table."
"You can say he was talk of a controversy," Carol spoke up.
"How's that?" Scully questioned.
"Kenny Law and another patient came in, from a drive-by shooting and because he appeared to look like a gang member, some doctors assumed that the other patient should receive more treatment, or so everyone would appear. Dr. Greene, the head of the ER and both the traumas, found out later on that Kenny Law was the innocent bystander and the other was the drug dealer. Kenny Law's brother, Chris was outraged and he even threatened Dr. Greene--" All of a sudden, the lounge door flies open. Randi stuck her head in.
"EMTs have a CHF with a ETA of 5," she announced and left again.
Scully looked over to Mulder, who was utterly confused what the attendant just said.
"We can finish up later," Doug said. Dr. Ross and Nurse Hathaway excused themselves and left in a hurry. Mulder turned to Scully and opened his mouth to ask what just happened, but she beat him to the punch.
"Paramedics have a congestive heart failure patient coming in about 5 minutes." Scully smiled. "Well, what do you think, Mulder?"
"Revenge," mumbled Mulder.
"I will agree with you there, but I don't see how the voodoo fits in."
"People who practice this art usually kill people by means of revenge. That's probably the main reason they practice it."
"You're saying that someone killed these boys for revenge? But how? And why?"
"Ooh. I just got you intrigued on this case, haven't I?"
"Intrigued, but still skeptical. Who was that on your phone?"
"Detective Carson. There's been a grave robbing."
"Can't the local police handle it?"
"But the corpse is now my main suspect."
Cook County Community Cemetery
Scully is a forensic scientist. She knew that, but she hates it when people disturb the dead. Her career clashes with this feeling, but she does what she does for a reason: to help them and their loved ones to peace and closure. For any other reason, Scully feels disgusted.
Dana Scully looked at the disturbed grave site and shook her head. Mulder, who was talking to Detective Carson, came up to Scully to investigate the scene.
"How could anyone just steal a dead body with no remorse?" Mulder knew Scully's feelings about grave robbing.
"I don't know."
"Oh, Mulder. Sorry." Scully turned around to face her partner. "I didn't know you were there. I was just thinking out loud." Her tone suddenly turned professional. "What did Detective Carson say?"
"Well," Mulder started, "you can see that someone dug up the grave and poured this white powder around it." As Mulder talked, they walked around the grave.
"It looks like someone performed a ritual," Scully noted.
"Yeah, and see the powder? It forms a picture or symbol, see?" He traces the trail of the powder with his finger. "What does it look like to you, Scully?"
Scully tilted her head, looking at the powder. "It looks the number eight."
"Or an infinity sign," corrected Mulder.
"So you think this and the deaths are connected?"
"You heard Nurse Hathaway and Doctor Ross. The conflict with Kenny Law between the hospital. And I bet my cell phone that Kenny Law had a disagreement with those two basketball players."
"So you think someone is using voodoo to retaliate the clashes in Kenny Law's life?" Mulder nodded. "And you think his brother, Chris Law stole the body for the rituals to do so?"
"No, that would be the easy way out. The casket was opened from the inside." Mulder smiled. Scully genuinely looked surprised, even though Mulder was expected to drop a bomb on her.
"Agents Mulder! Scully!" Detective Carson ran to them, a cell phone in hand. He looked like the average law enforcer. His work suit consists with a striped tie and dress shirt, black pants, and trench coat. Detective Carson has light brown eyes, that matched his short, light brown hair. "I called Cook County Hospital and did a medical check on Mr. Kenny Law here."
"And?" Mulder awaited for the information.
"He was seeing a shrink on a monthly basis. A Dr. Rose Webster."
"I'm Special Agent Dana Scully and this is my partner, Fox Mulder," she flashed her badge. "Dr. Webster? Can we talk to you for a minute?"
"Please, come on in," Rose Webster said, gesturing the two agents in her office. She was a small, middle-aged woman, with brown hair and hints of gray starting to show. "Detective Carson called me and told me what information you need for me." She sat down at her desk, while Mulder and Scully sat on the chairs in front of her desk. Rose picked up a file on her desk and handed it to Scully. "I'm still a little lost why you need Kenny Law's chart."
"We have reason to believe he has some kind of connection with the deaths--" Mulder started.
"The Imaginary-Bullet case. I know. This whole hospital is very curious about that."
"It says in his chart that he started seeing you after his grandfather died," Scully said.
Dr. Webster nodded. "At first it was for counseling, but then he made the choice of coming back just to talk."
"Did he talk about his grandfather a lot?" Mulder asked.
"Well, of course," Rose answered. "That was the main reason he was here. But, there has been times months after his grandfather's death, where all he did was talk about him. Sometimes, even repeats his stories."
"Don't you find that a little unusual?"
"Kenny just misses him. He's a really good kid, but he was brought up in this part of Chicago."
"What kind of things did he talk about his grandfather?" Mulder asked.
"That would be violating the patient-doctor confidentiality," Rose stated.
"But it might help us with this case," Mulder argued.
"Okay, was there something about voodoo in the conversations?" Dr. Webster looked up at Mulder with shock. Scully thought that he was surprising everyone at this hospital. She would also be stunned, too, but she's used to it by now.
"Thank you. That answers my question."
Scully was looking over the chart when she spotted something. "Kenny Law was treated for depression?"
"Yes," she replied. "He, at first, didn't feel like he fitted in. He clashed with most of the people in his life, except his family. Along with that and the death of his grandfather, it led to stages of depression."
"Your average anti-depressants."
"Did he ever clash with you, Dr. Webster?" That was, of course, Mulder talking.
She looked appalled. "Why--" Rose Webster was interrupted with gasps for air.
"Dr. Webster?" Scully ran by her side. Rose grabbed her throat, gasping for air. She fell to the ground, while Scully tired to figure out what was intruding her throat. Mulder went to the phone on her desk and called for someone in the ER.
"Oh, my God," Scully stated, completely stunned. Rose's throat was being crushed by something, but Scully couldn't see what. Mulder ran to her side and saw it, too.
"Dr. Webster, you have to hang on!" Mulder was trying to keep her awake, but she didn't react. Scully put her fingers on her neck to check for a pulse. All of a sudden, a couple of hospital personnel with a gurney entered the room. They all lifted Dr. Webster on the gurney, while Scully stated everything that happened.
"She has a ruptured spleen," Dr. Doug Ross told Dr. Peter Benton, as they rolled a MVA patient to the elevators.
"Her pulse is 180 and pressure's 80/50," Nurse Hathaway said.
"Okay, people! Let's move," Peter ordered. Dr. Benton and a couple of nurses went into an open elevator and headed to surgery. Carol and Doug turned around and started to head towards the admit desk, when all of a sudden, the other elevator opened.
"We need some help!!!!!" Carol and Doug turned around and saw those two FBI agents and a couple of hospital workers pushing a gurney. On the gurney was Rose Webster. The hair-headed agent was performing CPR. Hathaway and Ross rushed to their side.
"What happened?" Carol asked, as they rushed in the hallway.
"Clear trauma 1, Jerry," Doug ordered.
"What happened?" Carol repeated, looking at one of the hospital workers for an answer. But instead, the female FBI agent took over.
"Possible strangulation. Unconscious. Faint pulse and decreased heart rate. Edematous and cyanotic." Doug and Carol looked at the male agent with surprise. Mulder shrugged his shoulders. He was amazed and speechless in what Scully was doing. She was always on solid ground in stressful situations, but this got to him. They entered trauma 1 and put the patient on the table.
"1...2...3!" Doug commanded.
"Let's hook her up to a EKG," Scully said.
"You a doctor?" Carol asked. Scully nodded.
"Lungs are harsh and grating," Ross announced. "Limbs...," he checked, "are flaccid."
"Trachea is at the midline and are intact," Carol observed. "She's tachy."
"Let's get an IV. We still have a pulse," Doug said.
"We need to intubate," Scully ordered. Chuny handed Doug the tube and the laryngoscope. Then, Mulder spoke up.
"Look." Mulder pointed on the right shoulder on Dr. Webster. The infinity sign again. A long beep escape one of the machines.
"We lost a pulse!!!" Carol exclaimed. She started performing CPR.
"Bag her!" Doug ordered. One of the nurses hooked the tube with an ambu-bag. He turned to Chuny. "Get me the crash cart!" Chuny got the red cart on the wall and Doug grabbed the paddles. "Let's start on 100!"
Kenny and Chris Law stopped praying and looked at each other. Kenny and Chris smiled, but Chris was less enthused by this whole thing.
All of a sudden, the unnatural wind came back and blew out the third candle of the eight.
Back in the ER
"360!!! Clear!!!!!!" Doug shocked Rose, but she still didn't respond.
Mulder stood by, while Scully, Nurse Hathaway, Dr. Ross and a couple more nurses tried to resuscitate the patient on the table. They were shouting these medical terms, that were like a foreign language to Mulder. Amp of epi, defibrillate, tachycardia. What the heck? What these people do amazed him. Their reflexes had to be intact, stomach had to be strong and they all had to be emotionally stable. Just like being an FBI agent. But what ER doctors and nurses do is more challenging than chasing down little green, I'm sorry, gray, men. They have to save lives on the spot and they can't wait for others to die to figure out what the problem is. They also have to deal with more emotions than what he and Scully do. Doctors have bad news to tell, literally everyday, while Mulder and Scully usually get laughed at by witnesses, colleagues, suspects and even their boss.
But why is he bringing Scully into this? She knows the challenges these doctors and nurses have to face; she IS a doctor. She experienced everything she did in medical school and as an FBI agent. She always amazed Mulder and he was lucky to have Scully with him, in this quest of his. Scratch that. THEIR quest.
"How long has she been down?" Doug asked, as he prepared to shock Rose again.
"25 minutes." Carol looked at the clock. Carol, Doug and Scully looked at each other. They knew. And by the way Scully glanced at Mulder, he knew. He solemnly nodded his head.
"Time of death: 14:24," Doug announced. Then something caught his eye again. The infinity sign, which was still there, suddenly faded away. "That's the same thing that happened with the two basketball players." He looked up to Mulder and Scully who saw the same thing.
"Chuny, let's get a death kit," Carol said softly. She's a nurse and she's been a nurse for more than five years. She sees things at her line of work that is pretty unimaginable, but no matter what, death is the most horrific. People are in here, trying to be saved, but if you can't grant that wish, you can't try and reverse it. It's a big responsibility and when someone literally puts their life in your hands, you know this is bigger than anything else.
It's kind of funny, though. When Carol was a little girl, she would hear stories that death always appeared as black hooded skeleton, holding a sickle. But now, it can sometimes be a scrub wearing doctor or nurse, with a stethoscope around their neck.
Her thoughts were interrupted, when Mulder spoke up.
"Can we speak outside? It's about the case." Mulder didn't want to talk about it in there, because of what just happened. Scully was relieved that= Mulder became sensitive on the matter. Dr. Ross, Nurse Hathaway, Mulder and Scully exited the trauma room.
"You told us before that Kenny Law's brother threatened Dr. Greene," Mulder started. "What happened then?"
"Well, the whole thing made some people think it had something to do with race." Doug started. "Then months later, Mark-- I mean, Dr. Greene was brutally attacked in the men's restroom here in the hospital. He was a victim of a random act of violence, but Dr. Greene refused to believe that. For months he felt Chris Law attacked him, as a way of getting even."
"This traumatic event made him a little paranoid. That's why he's been bitter for months. He was never like this," Carol added. "He's afraid of this happening again and losing control." Then, a doctor came up to Dr. Ross and gave him some charts to sign.
Mulder turned to Scully. "Rose Webster was another person that angered Kenny when he was alive," he whispered. "And I bet you one of Dr. Webster's fears is being choked to death." Carol heard it though.
"So, let me get this straight," Scully started, also whispering. "Someone, you suspect Chris Law, performed a ritual to bring a body back to life. Then the party is using voodoo to kill people for revenge and using fear as their weapon? Mulder, that's crazy."
"I'm glad we're on the same page," smirked Mulder. Scully raised an eyebrow.
"I'm sorry," Carol laughed. The agents looked up. "You two seem to disagree with everything. How do you work so well together?"
"High tolerance of being second guessed," Mulder responded, smiling.
"We should do an autopsy on Dr. Webster," Scully interrupted.
"Sure," Doug said. "We can get a doctor in soon."
"If you don't mind, can I perform it?" Scully asked. "I'm a forensic doctor."
"Tomorrow?" Carol asked.
"Tomorrow," Scully confirmed.
Cook County Forensics Department
"The date is February 10, time is 8:54 in the morning." Scully spoke professionally into the recorder she had in her hand. Her voice echoed, through the small, but spacious autopsy room. She was all alone, because, again, Mulder didn't tell her where he went. Yes, that's right. He ditched her once again. He made a smart remark, when Scully asked in the hotel room, "Where are you going?"
Scully, dressed in a pair of blue scrubs and a white lab coat, pulled the blanket down from the cadaver's face and revealed a pale Rose Webster. Scully clicked on the recorder again and pushed some of her golden red hair behind her ear.
"Case number #082098, field agent: Fox Mulder. Patient's name was Rose Webster. Caucasian female, age 32. 66 inches with extremities and 130 pounds. Cause of death: possible strangulation. I will start with the external examination. No indications of bruising around the neck, with would contradict with the strangulation theory. Note: on the right shoulder, there seems to be a slight breakout of nodules, which forms an image." Scully reached out her gloved hand and felt Rose's shoulder. "It appears to be the number 'eight,' but to this case, it is believed to be an infinity sign. This symbol also appeared in the trauma room, prior to the minutes of her death, but then it disappeared." She sighed. Scully put the recorder down and reached out for the tray, with all the metallic medical instruments, sterilized and polished. She grabbed the scalpel. "Now I will start with the internal exam."
Hours later, after exploring the inside of Rose's body, Scully didn't find anything too unusual. She weighed and measured the organs, but then she remembered something on the external exam. Scully took the scalpel and cut around the shoulder.
"Oh, my God."
The red-headed forensics doctor extracted the foreign object that was embedded on Rose's shoulder with the medical instrument that looks like a pair of tongs. Mulder is not going to believe this, Scully thought. Actually, he might.
Later, as Scully was stitching up the body, her cell phone shrilled from the pocket of her lab coat. She put down the tools on the tray and snapped off her gloves. After the third ring, she hit the ON button.
"Scully," she answered, pulling the goggles up to her head.
"There's been another murder," said the voice in the other line. "Cook County movie theater."
"I'll be there when I'm done closing up."
"Find anything?" Mulder asked.
"Yeah," she sighed. "But I want to tell you in person. I still can't believe it. Where were you?"
"The police station," he answered.
"Find anything?" Scully asked.
"I want to tell you in person."
Cook County Movie Theater
Scully pulled up her rent-a-car in the parking lot and stepped out, dressed in her usual FBI apparel. She walked in the small, quaint movie theater, carrying her badge and a couple of files. The movie theater were swarming with police officers, taking forensics pictures, dusting, asking witnesses. Scully flashed her badge to the officer in the entrance. He let her in and she walked to the screening room/murder scene. She lifted the police tape, ducked and entered, where spotted her partner, taking a look at one of the bodies.
Without turning around, Mulder sensed Scully's presence.
"Check it out, Scully." She bent over, next to Mulder and saw the body, lying on the aisle. She grabbed a pair of gloves from her pocket and put them on. It was a black male. But from the look of it, Scully couldn't determine cause of death. Scully looked next to the body and saw another in a body bag. She unzipped the bag and it was a female. It was the same: couldn't determine cause of death. Scully instinctively looked at the right shoulder and saw the same nodules on Rose. She looked at Mulder, who looked at the shoulder of the male and saw the same thing. She nodded and got up. Mulder did the same.
"The male is Steve Johnson and the girl is Grace Law," Mulder said. He handed Scully the police report file. "Both age 13."
"Law? Any relation?"
"Yes, actually. She was their first cousin."
"Anyone determine cause of death?"
"They were scared to death. They had heart failure."
"How?" Scully looked up.
"I don't know how."
"Well, what movie were they watching?" She looked down again at the file.
"'Spice World,'" he said, smiling. Scully looked up again.
"Seriously?" Scully asked.
"Hey, you know how scary that movie is," Mulder said.
"I wouldn't know. I've never seen it before," Scully teased. "You?"
Mulder simply shrugged his shoulders. "I was probably drinking," Mulder defended himself.
"You never drink," Scully pointed out. Mulder had a look of uh-oh-I'm-caught- now-she-knows on his face. For a moment there, she actually thought he was joking, but now she wasn't sure... "What movie?"
"They were watching 'The Exorcist.'" Mulder answered.
"That makes sense," Scully said.
"But according to the police report," Mulder started, "they died around the time of the previews."
"Then what scared them?"
"Witnesses heard them scream out the name 'Frank' and when I asked Grace's mom, she said this Frank was Grace's abusive stepfather. But Frank Jordan has been in jail for 5 years now. And no one saw anyone in the theater talking to the kids."
"So, what you're saying is that Chris and Kenny Law used their voodoo 'magic' to create an imagine of Frank Jordan to frighten Grace Law and Steve Johnson, which frightened them to death."
"Bingo," Mulder smiled.
"And what kind of conflict did Grace have with Kenny?"
"'They simply didn't get along,' quoted Grace's mother," Mulder said.
"I still don't believe in this voodoo theory of yours, Mulder, but I do believe Chris is involved," Scully said.
"Understandable," Mulder nodded.
"Have you located Chris Law anywhere?"
"Chicago is a big city, Scully, and we don't even know if they ARE still in Chicago." Scully nodded. "Oh, what did you find out on Rose Webster?" Now it was time for Scully to explain her part of the case.
"Even though her body didn't show physical evidence of strangulation, the amount of adrenaline in her brain said she did so. Afterwards, I found the most unusual piece of evidence inside her right shoulder."
"More unusual than that fluke worm?"
"Weirder than that. Embedded in her trapezius muscle was this," she held out an evidence bag that was in her pocket. It was a tiny cloth bag, tied with a tiny piece of yarn.
"What's the trapezius muscle?" Mulder took the bag and examined it.
"It's a deep muscle located on your shoulder," Scully explained.
"What's in it?"
"A variety of plants and herbs and most of it don't even originate in the US, but in the Brazilian rain forest."
"And I can top you off with the more shocking discoveries--" Scully started.
"But I always like being on top, Scully," he said. She raised an eyebrow and sighed.
"Anyway, I looked over on the other victims files and they had the same thing embedded in their shoulders. And one of the plants, which is a rare type of legume, found in that sack could've caused the outbreak of the skin."
"Which formed the infinity sign." Mulder finished.
"We need to find Chris Law," Scully agreed. "And soon."
"Why Grace, man?! Dammit, she was only 13," Chris exclaimed.
"Hey, you know what she did. And she deserved it," Kenny answered. "You slowin' us down."
It was understandable that Chris Law was having second thoughts about this whole thing. He was the cautious one, because he the oldest brother. But he had a feeling that he made a huge mistake. He looked at the candles on the wall. Five candles were out and three were still burning. He looked at his brother again. He really looked tired.
"You heard what grandpa said," Kenny said. "I can't go back, until they all hurt. You asked for it, not me."
"I was wrong, okay?"
"What?? You're changing your mind *now*?? You can't do that! We both can't look back."
"Then, I won't be a part of this anymore," Chris said. "I know this is all my fault--"
"You think you can run away from it?" his brother asked, with disgust. "Think again, man. This was all you." He was right. This was all Chris' fault. It won't be over, until this is all over.
Bed Bugs Motel
"Would you like to talk about your grandfather again, Kenny?"
"Yeah. Taught me and Chris a lot about his beliefs. Powerful stuff, man."
Mulder popped another sunflower seed in his mouth. He was listening to some of the therapy session tapes with his walkman. He sat there, on the couch, leaning forward, looking at case files on the coffee table. Mulder was listening to the walkman, because he didn't want to wake Scully up. He sneaked in her room an hour ago to look at this case. (Don't get any ideas: the case files were in her room.)
He looked at an autopsy picture Scully took of Rose Webster. It was a glossy black and white photo of her right shoulder. Infinity sign.
"It looks like the number eight."
Scully's earlier quote echoed through Mulder's mind. He suddenly looked at the victim list. 2... 3... 5. Five victims... three more to go. He started digging through more evidence papers and resources buried underneath.
The shuffling of papers was enough to wake Dana Scully up. She was sleeping on her right side and started opening her eyes. At first, the room was really blurry. She opened her eyes again for adjustment and saw Mulder on the couch, looking through papers on her coffee table (which, by the way, took her hours the night before to organize). Although, she was shocked, Scully was too tired to react. She sat up on her bed, trying to wake up more. Mulder looked up.
"Morning, Sunshine," Mulder smiled. He stopped his walkman and took off the headphones.
Scully, squinting her eyes, looked at her watch on the nightstand. "Mulder, it's almost 6 in the morning," her voice was weak, but Mulder could sense she was a little peeved.
"Hey, Scully. I found out some interesting facts about voodoo," Mulder ignored her complaint. She rubbed her eyes and got out of bed. Scully grabbed her robe, covered her PJ's (which were NORMAL PJ's), and staggered to the couch. She sat down next to Mulder. He was reading from a book he brought along with him. The Lone Gunmen lent it to him. "It says here, believers place a sack of plants and herbs after they cast spells..."
"Mulder," she said warningly.
"Then how would you explain those sacks in the bodies?"
"No scars or marks showed that evidence."
"That's because of the small outbreak of the skin could've easily secluded the evidence."
"I looked at their medical records, Scully. They have not received any surgeries on their shoulders."
"But these people have had surgeries before, Mulder. There could've been some mishap during the operation and someone could've accidentally dropped those sacks inside the openings."
"So, what you're saying is that a hippie doc might've accidentally dropped his Mary Jane during a splicing and dicing." He smiled.
"Well, it's a lot more plausible than a magic spell." Scully sighed. "Look, Mulder. I don't see why we are arguing. We found enough evidence to point Chris Law as the suspect. And he may have an accomplice--"
"Kenny Law," Mulder pretended to sneeze.
"He's dead, Mulder."
"Not according to a voodoo ritual. You have no idea what's in Frohike's library," Mulder admired the book. Man, without the Lone Gunmen, he would be lost.
"Oh, I have an idea what's exactly in his library," Scully said under her breath. "You too seem to have the same taste in... literature."
"I heard that." He smiled. "Anyway, according to a ritual, they bring a person back from the dead to avenge some pain they were caused during the person's life. They usually have a list: eight people. And the person won't rest until he is avenged." He looked up from the book. "That means, Kenny won't die until it's all over."
"There's been five victims, Mulder. We can't let three more people die, magic or no magic," Scully said.
"There is a way of breaking the spell..." Mulder started, then he read the book to himself.
All of a sudden, they heard a faint sound. It was the shrill of a cell phone. Scully looked around the room. She leaned closer to Mulder coat, which was laying on one of the arms of the couch. "Mulder, it's you."
Mulder picked up his cell phone, while Scully got up and went to the bathroom. "Mulder." He listened intently to his phone. "Okay, we'll be there, soon." He pressed END and tucked the phone back in his coat. "We have to get back to the hospital." He only waited two minutes for Scully. He looked up and saw Scully come out of the bathroom, dressed and freshened up. *How does she do that?* Mulder thought.
"Let's go," he said, picking up his coat and giving Scully her coat. They both rushed out of the door.
"50 milligrams of Demerol and let's get a push on the results of the lavage," Doug said to the nurses and doctors, coming out of the trauma room. The patient was screaming like crazy in there. "Remember! Demerol!" He chuckled. Carol was waiting for him outside the room.
"Sounds like the patient made it," she commented.
"What about yours?"
"No," she said solemnly. "They both died. And they had the same mark as the other patients."
"Damn," Doug whispered. "Did you call those FBI people?"
"Yeah, Agent Mulder gave me his card. He probably has more information on this case." With this comment, Doug laughed. "What's so funny?"
"You believe that guy?"
"Kinda interesting what he says all the time," Carol shrugged.
"He's a nut, Carol," Doug stated. "I bet you he believes in aliens, ghosts and the fact that Elvis is still alive. I don't know how that partner of his puts up with him."
"It's called commitment, Doug," Carol argued, with a smile on her face.
"Commit- what?" He feigned and Carol laughed a little. They both walked to the admit desk, waiting for the agents to arrive. Just in time, the short, red- headed woman and the tall, hazel-eyed man entered through the ambulance doors.
"Okay, I got one for you, Mulder," the woman challenged. "How did Chris and Kenny learn an ancient religion in a modern city?"
"The grandfather," Agent Mulder said simply. "The therapy tapes prove it, too." She sighed. "You can never beat me, Scully."
"Don't look smug, Mulder. It's unprofessional." Scully said, after a while. She knew she couldn't win this battle. She looked around and saw Nurse Hathaway and Dr. Ross waiting for them. They looked pretty amused by these agents' contradictory rapport. Doug Ross and Carol Hathaway were exactly like that, too. Except, instead of the beliefs of the paranormal, it's the beliefs of commitment. However, both remained unexplainable.
"Agent Mulder, Agent Scully," Carol greeted. Then her countenance turned solemn, because of the news she had. "There were two more deaths. The marks and everything."
"Damn," Scully whispered.
"That's seven already. There's one more," Mulder said.
"We gotta find them, Mulder." She sighed. She turned to the ER nurse and doctor. "What happened?"
"A car accident," Carol said. "The girl looked familiar, so I checked her chart. She was here 7 months ago for a broken leg and guess who brought her?"
"Kenny," Mulder knew.
"Exactly. They were a couple and they seemed to be a serious couple, but the other victim who came today was, I guess a new boyfriend. He died as well," Carol explained. Doug looked at her, surprised. 'How did you know that?' Doug thought. 'I'm a woman. I notice these things,' Carol smiled at Doug. She had that look.
"Any witnesses?" Scully asked.
"Yeah, one. She had a front row view," Doug spoke up. "Or should I say, back seat."
"She was in the same car?" Mulder asked. Doug nodded.
"Follow me," Dr. Ross led the agents and Carol to exam room 3. They all entered to see a young, teenage girl, lying in bed, wearing a hospital gown, with a bandage on her forehead and cast on her left leg.
"Hey, there, Terry," Doug greeted her. She smiled at the site of Dr. Ross and when she saw the tall, good-looking man in the suit, she smiled even more.
"Dr. Ross," she said, smiling shyly.
"How are you feeling?"
"Thanks for the Demerol, I feel a lot better." Then, Terry looked around again. Why were so many people here? "What's going on?"
"These people want to ask you a couple of questions about the accident, Terry," Carol said, softly. Terry smiled, again. Even though she knew Dr. Ross and the nurse were together, she liked her.
"Deal, but I want to talk to that guy over there," pointing at Mulder. All their heads turned to him. Scully look very amused, while Mulder, usually with his permanent poker face, started to blush. Ha! You would never see this from Spooky, Scully thought.
"Okay," Carol said. They, except Mulder and Terry, started to leave.
"Don't do anything I wouldn't, Agent Mulder," Doug whispered. He chuckled when they all left. Scully stood by the door outside, while Carol and Doug continued with their jobs.
"Hi, Terry. My name is Mulder," he sat down next to her.
"'Mulder'?! That's an... odd name, sir," Terry didn't want to say anything offending. 'Oh, yeah. You don't know my first name, kid,' Mulder thought.
"Well, can you tell me anything unusual about the car ride?"
"Well, Sherri and Rob were dropping me home from work, which was kinda weird. She drove, even though she swore that she would never go behind the wheel, ever again. Sherri was in a terrible car accident 5 years ago with her parents. Both of them died, while Sherri waited for the paramedics. I was expecting Rob to be driving, but I thought Sherri wanted to try it out. And the other thing is, during the car ride, they didn't talk and I thought there was a little trouble in paradise, if you catch my drift."
"They were involved?" She nodded. "Very serious?"
"Of course. They should be," Terry commented.
"Why do you say that?"
"Well, Rob and Sherri became a couple, before she broke up with her old boyfriend."
"Was his name Kenny Law?"
"How did you know that?" Terry looked up.
Meanwhile, Scully awaited outside the exam room, while Mulder talked to Terry. She peeked in again and Terry glanced at her and back to Mulder and continued their conversation, with that 'I-got-this-guy-and-you-don't' look on her face. Scully chuckled to herself.
She looked around the action of the ER. When she was in med-school, she fell in love with her ER rotation. Scully fell in love with the adrenaline and the quick pace of it all. But it was a decision between this and forensics. So, why forensics? Well, her parents wanted her to become a safe doctor and she gave them what they wanted, then changed her mind completely and became an FBI agent. Were the Scully parents ever disappointed. The look on their face when Dana told them was going to haunt her for life. At least, they all have an understanding now. She learned that rebellion from her sister, Melissa. She smiled, admirably.
Missy? Scully looked through the long, main corridor of the ER and she saw her sister, looking at her. Wait a minute, she's been dead for two years now. That can't be her! Even though Scully was thinking rationally, she ran to Missy, calling out her name. Melissa walked out to the ambulance doors and Scully soon followed. When she came out, no one was there. What's wrong with you, Dana? She's dead. Scully sighed and started heading for the ER, when all of a sudden, a extremely dull pain came down to her head and before she could any anything, everything went black.
"Thanks for your time, Terry," Mulder got up and left the exam room. When he got out, he couldn't find Scully. He looked around and he had this weird feeling in his stomach. 'Something's wrong...,' Mulder thought.
Mulder ran to the admit desk, where he found Nurse Hathaway, chatting with Jerry, one of the admit desk attending.
"Excuse me, Nurse Hathaway, have you seen Agent Scully?"
"She's not in front of the exam room?"
"No," Mulder said, impatiently. "Where is she?"
"Actually, I saw her rush out of here," Jerry spoke up. "She was calling out a name, too."
"Missy, I think. And afterwards, I didn't notice her go inside again." Mulder knew the name and he had a look of panic on his face. He ran to the ambulance bay and Nurse Hathaway followed. They saw no one. Mulder looked around and something caught his eye. On the ground, there was a small, red puddle.
Oh, my God. Scully. The feeling on his stomach worsened and he became dazed. His partner. Then something else caught his eye. Lying next to the blood was one of the herbs Scully found on the autopsy. He picked it up and felt the dried leaf in his hand.
"Agent Mulder? Are you okay?" Carol knew by the look of this man's face his partner meant a lot to him. And, when she saw the blood, she knew that this man was thinking the worst. Luckily for Carol, she was trained for these types of situations. "Agent Mulder, let's go back in the hospital," she said gently.
"No! I gotta find her," he said frantically.
"We can call the police. You won't find her this way. Chicago's a big city." Fox Mulder reluctantly walked back with Carol to the ER and headed for the phones.
After the call, Mulder turned to the nurse. "I have to head back to the police station."
"Don't worry, Mr. Mulder, you'll find her," Carol said.
All of a sudden, Mark Greene walked to the admit desk. Mulder looked as he turned in a chart and took another from the chart tray. Mulder, with the help of his photographic memory, suddenly remembered some facts about the case. Mark Greene was the doctor in charge when Kenny Law died. Seven victims, one more to go. Damn.
"Dr. Greene," Mulder called out. Mark turned around to the agent who had been hanging around the ER, trying to solve this case. "I have reason to believe your life might be in danger. I would feel a lot comfortable if you took a break and went with me to the police station."
"How would my life be in danger?"
"Chris Law is our suspect."
Mark Greene, for a moment, had fear in his eyes. Then, a thought entered his mind. "How do you know about Chris Law?"
"I told him, Mark," Carol spoke up.
"What?!" Anger filled his brown eyes. "Carol, how could you??" He turned to Mulder. "As far as I'm concerned, you have done nothing. People who were involved in this investigation has died, thanks to you. It seems like you've been wrong. If you were right, those people would still be alive. Why should I believe a damn word you say??"
Carol put her hand on his shoulder. "It might save your life." Mark looked at her and Mulder. Then he shrugged off Carol's hand and turned his back and left. Mulder tried to pursue him, but Carol stopped.
"It's no use. He's too stubborn. I'll keep an eye on him."
"If anything happens--"
"He's my friend, Agent Mulder," Carol interrupted. "Just, please. Stop this, before Mark or Agent Scully gets hurt." Mulder smiled, sadly and quickly left the ER.
Cook County Police Station
Mulder learned from the years with the FBI, if your partner was hurt, missing or dead, a part of you also goes with them. And when they die, a part of you dies. He was worried sick that his partner was in pain, but he knew that his partner wasn't dead. Mulder knew, but he didn't know what was going on.
Over the five years Mulder and Scully were working together in the FBI, they formed a strong bond between each other and no one could ever break it. With a stare, touch, sigh or movement, they knew what the other was thinking. Mulder sometimes believes this connection of theirs is a weird psychic ability, but if he ever told Scully, he knew she would raise that eyebrow of hers and start lecturing him on how psychic abilities are nothing more than science fiction. So the most reasonable explanation for their bond is their trust, understanding and respectful relationship.
Now, it all hangs in the balance. Where are you, Scully?? I know you hate to be saved, but right now is a really good time to put aside your pride and to let me help you.
Fox Mulder sat at Detective Carson's desk, looking at more forensics pictures, papers and other evidence trying to find the location of Chris and Kenny Law. This search was for his partner and for Mark Greene. He dropped a black and white photo on the desk and sighed. How frustrating is this?! His quick mind can solve anything, but now it's hard. They left no evidence whatsoever of their location. Time's ticking, my friend.
He reached in his pocket and pulled out the little herb found in front of the ER. The corners of the leaves had dry blood. Scully's blood. That thought scared the living daylights out of him. It's getting hot in here and he had his jacket off, his sleeves were rolled up and his tie loosened.
All of a sudden, Detective Carson charged in, carrying a small evidence bag.
"I found this in the evidence room, filed under Kenny Law's death. The hospital gave us his personal belongings and I thought you might have wanted to look at this." He waved the bag around and tossed it in front of Mulder. He picked it up and examined the bag. Inside was a small key.
"This is a warehouse key," Mulder looked up.
"All right, now we're getting somewhere." Carson stopped and turned to Mulder. "Wait a minute, there are more than 2 dozen warehouses in Chicago. It'll take hours searching each and everyone." Mulder slammed his head down, in defeat. Detective Carson looked curiously at the little herb next to Mulder.
"Digitalis purpurea," he said, picking up the plant.
"What?" Mulder looked up again.
"I majored in botany."
"What kind of plant is this?"
"Digitalis purpurea, commonly known as foxglove. Where did you find this?"
"Where's your phone book?" Detective Carson pointed at the bookshelf next to the small desk. Mulder fingered the bookshelf and pulled out the County General phone book. He flipped through the yellow pages and found what he was looking for. He pointed on the center of a page.
"'Foxglove Storage,'" Mulder read. He grabbed his jacket off the chair and headed for the door. "Let's go,"
Carol sighed. Mark. They are good friends. She helped him when he first came to County General. He was still third year and she just became an RN. When she saw this tall, almost balding man, Carol thought, 'great, another man doctor, with a huge ego.' But he was confused about this new place and wasn't afraid to show it. Next to Doug Ross and Susan Lewis, she was probably one of his closest friends.
She helped him in the beginning, and now he won't ask for her help. This made her frustrated and angry. Frustrated of the wall Mark built around himself that no one seemed to break down. Angry at the fact that Carol didn't help him sooner. Sure, it would've made him hate Carol, but it could've helped him.
Nurse Hathaway's thoughts were interrupted by the slamming of the ambulance entrance. A pair of paramedics rushed in, rolling a gurney.
"Jerry, we need some help here!"
Carol Hathaway has been in this type of situation billions and billions of times, but she still gets scared. Whenever you enter trauma rooms with bloody, bruised or punctured patients, you never know what the outcome will be. She learned never be too confident, because she's always playing the card that might change someone's life for good. She also learned that it will ever get easier, no matter how much experience one person has.
However, Carol can't think too gravely on a person's life. She has to have hope, trust and responsibility. When she believes that, it shows. Sure, she's 'only' a nurse, but she's no different than a doctor. She cares. 'Never be careless, but, also never be too careful.' When Carol was in nursing school, her teacher said those words and Carol never forgot it.
"Pressure's 40 palp," Carol said.
"Get her crits spun," Doug ordered.
"Blood type and cross and some units of O-neg. Damn kid. Why did she have to be in the way?" Mark shook his head. He, Carol, Doug, Lily and Malik were in trauma one, trying to save a little girl's life who was in a drive-by shooting. When Carol and Doug heard this comment, they looked at each other. Doug chose to ignore it, now.
"Get radiology and Benton in here!"
"I'll do it. Don't get Benton," Mark said, referring to the surgical procedure that had to be performed. "There's no time."
"But Mark--" Doug started.
"I got it! Let's get a chest tube," Mark interrupted. Carol reluctantly gave Mark the chest tube kit. Mark, don't do this.
One of the machines started beeping and Carol looked. "She's taching! Pressure's crashing."
"Thoracotomy tray. I'll crack her." Doug announced.
"No, I'll do it."
"You sure, Mark?"
"Don't question my judgment, Dr. Ross," he said, firmly.
"Get some more o-neg down here!" Doug said, trying to go along with his friend.
Dr. Mark Greene started making the incision, but Doug, who was watching him, knew something was wrong.
"That cut doesn't look deep enough. Mark, you need any help?"
"Dr. Ross! I'm in charge here!" He looked at the incision. It was poorly done. "Dammit! I can't see in here!!"
"It's okay, Mark. I'll take over from here," Doug started, reaching for the scalpel, but Mark did something that he's never done before in the ER. He shoved Doug Ross. Luckily he didn't lose his balance.
"I know what I'm doing, Doug!"
"Dammit! That's it!" Carol had enough. She rushed out the trauma room and saw Kerry, looking at an x-ray. "Kerry, we need another doctor. Mark blew up again." They rushed into the trauma room and Kerry saw Doug getting up from the ground.
"What the hell is going on here??!" She sounded like the principal breaking up a school yard fight. Actually, Kerry Weaver was the boss, so it fit her perfectly.
"This patient needs help, Kerry and I don't think Mark is capable," Carol said, helping Doug off the ground. "I suggest you removing Mark from the trauma room."
"Okay, Carol, take Mark out of here." Kerry turned to Mark. "Go, Mark. Go. I got it from here." As Mark was about to protest, Carol looked at him. They both exited the trauma room.
"You and I need to talk," Carol walked him to the lounge.
"What the hell's wrong with you?! You had no right--"
"Oh, I had every right! That was the most immature thing I have ever seen from you, Mark! You risked a patient's life," Carol exclaimed. She looked at him straight in the eyes. She took at deep breath to calm herself down. "What happened, Mark?"
"You embarrassed me in front of everyone, Carol," Mark scorned.
"I think you embarrassed yourself when you pushed your best friend on the ground." Mark walked to the door to exit, but Carol stood in the way. "We're not going anywhere until you get your act together."
"Okay, fine. I'm listening." He sat down on the couch, while Carol paced around the room.
"What happened, Mark?" She repeated the question.
"My eyes have finally opened, Carol. Life sucks. It sucks and I can't do anything about it," Mark explained. "I can't protect myself from the outside world in these walls. Whatever happens, happens."
"You have closed out to everyone around you. We all care about you, especially your three best friends."
"Three?" Mark knew she was talking about Carol and Doug. But a third?
"You told her??"
"I thought you did, Mark. And, besides, she's willing to help. It seems you didn't have any contact with her after she left for Phoenix."
"I don't believe this! Carol, this is my life. I don't need anyone."
"I can't believe that. Look, I can't say I'm sorry that I told Susan. I would do it again and again if I had the chance. In the beginning, you helped me with my demons, even though I didn't want it. Now, it's my turn. You might not want this, but I know you need it. You burying this with your cynicism isn't going to make it all go away." She held out a piece of paper to Mark. "It's Susan's number. Doug and I tried to talk to you, but it didn't help. Maybe talking to her might. She was closer to you than anyone one of us. Susan understood you and she still does."
Mark looked at the piece of paper. For a long time. Taking this piece of paper might change his life. He was afraid of running, but that's all he did. Run. He ran away from his feelings to make everyone around him happy. Then something clicked in his mind. Mark looked at Carol, then the piece of paper. He pushed it away and stood up.
"Just stay out of my life," he whispered, as he headed for the door. Carol sighed in defeat and put her head down. Her head snapped right up when she heard Mark gasp. He was struggling and Carol came up to him.
"Mark?? Mark? Talk to me!" Carol called out. She looked in his eyes and it showed fear, but he was looking at something else. He started having visions. Fists flying. There was kicking and the pain Mark experienced in the men's bathroom was coming back. It was stronger than a vivid flashback. It felt real and it scared him. He couldn't see Carol. He only saw the masked faces that scarred him for life.
Carol looked at Mark, frantically. What the hell is going? Then, she remembered what Agent Mulder said. She automatically checked out his right shoulder under his scrubs. There is was. The sign.
"No!" She placed Mark carefully on the ground and left the lounge to get Doug. They entered again, seeing Mark twitch from the pain. They both ran to his side and Doug also saw the sign.
"Mark, listen to me, you gotta fight back!" Doug exclaimed.
"He can't hear you. What do we do?"
"We can't just stand here. We gotta help him. Let's get a gurney."
"Now, this is more like it!" Chris Law laughed. He always hated the skinny doctor with the little glasses. He killed his brother. This is the moment he has been waiting for. After this, Kenny will die with dignity. All the people who caused him pain will rot, while Kenny can sit back and enjoy eternity.
The spell was nearly complete and this death is sweeter than any revenge.
Chris and Kenny Law looked at the far corner, where a woman had been bound and gagged. Part of her red hair glimmered red-gold from the sparse light that entered the cold, dark, spacious room.
"Look who finally woke up," Kenny said, walking to her. Chris followed, with a flashlight. He shined the light on the woman's face and she squinted. Her forehead had some dry blood on it from the injury.
"You and your partner has been tryin' to stop us. But it's okay now, we're almost done." They laughed and walked back in front of their alter.
Dana Scully hates being the damsel in distress. It's the one role that she always avoided in her elementary school plays. Thank goodness her teachers always type-cast the damsels as blondes and usually a little bit taller. Scully always enjoyed the role as one of the knights, or one of the king's men. Once she played a rock and it made her the happiest person in the kindergarten class. She hates being the center of attention, so a rock or a tree is a perfect disguise.
Scully, using her FBI training, began working on the rope that tied her hands behind her back. She felt the knot, then frowned. *This was harder than I thought,* Scully thought.
This was harder than I thought, Mulder thought. He and Detective Carson entered the Foxglove Storage and it was enormous, plus there were a billion storing compartments. Rows and rows. And they only have one little key. But instead of standing there, hopeless, he decided to take action.
Flashlight in the right hand and a walkie talkie in the other, Mulder started walking the rows and trying to feel which one was right. He and Detective Carson split up, while Mulder had the key. His footsteps echoed and from a distance, he heard Carson's gait, getting fainter and fainter.
Mulder shone his flashlight ahead of him and something gold gleamed in the distance. As the object glimmered, so did Mulder's hope. He ran to the object and picked it up. Scully's crucifix. The tiny cross dangled from the long, thin chain. He saw the clasp was unfastened and he knew. Scully did this. She left that clue, so he can find her. He smiled to himself. Even at her worst moments, she thought clearly about everything.
He looked up and saw the metal door, which was chained and locked. He grabbed the small key in his pocket and pressed the communicate button on the walkie talkie. He whispered in the mouthpiece.
"Detective Carson, it's storage case number #15 and I'm going in, over."
"I copy that. I'll call for backup," Detective Carson's voice was mixed in with a little static, but Mulder heard it clearly. But then the static overcame the Detective's voice when he said, "Be careful."
Mark, don't do this. Please don't do this.
Come on, buddy. Hang on.
Hopefully, these silent prayers from his co-workers and friends were heard. Because that's all they could do: pray, anticipate and hope. Modern medicine, the thing these people relied on, didn't grant the wish or provide the answers. Little did the scrub-wearing adults knew, it was helping and Mark Greene heard them. After all, it's been known that words were stronger than action
"FBI! Hands up!" Fox Mulder rushed into the room, gun in hand. He searched the dark room and saw no sign of Chris or Kenny Law. But there was an alter next to the doorway. There were eight candles and only one of them were lit. Herbs were scattered and an ancient book was in the middle. It was open to a page.
Then he heard a sound in the far corner. Mulder moved in cautiously, gun in hand. Enough light revealed who it was.
"Scully," Mulder said, with such relief. He ran up to her and started untying her arms. Scully, who was still gagged, tried making noises to get his attention.
"What? What's wrong?" He pulled down the gag.
"It's a trap!" Scully exclaimed.
All of a sudden, a burst of cold wind pulled Mulder to the opposite corner. His gun flew out of his hand and trapped him there. Chris and Kenny Law lured out of the dark, so Mulder could see them.
"Let's finish it," Chris said. Kenny nodded and headed toward the alter. Chris stayed with Mulder and started saying a prayer.
"What are you doing?" Scully's voice was filled with concern. Kenny spoke up, his back still turned.
"I'm gonna finish up the ritual, while Chris, here, will kill your partner."
Mulder looked up and saw Scully, then his eyes were fixed on Chris. An explosion came between them. Mulder was surrounded by fire! The blistering heat was making him perspire and breathing became difficulty. The bright flames were engulfing him, while he heard his partner's voice was faintly calling out his name. Maybe it's the last time he would ever hear her voice...
"Mulder! It's a hallucination! Fight it!" Scully knew Mulder feared fire, but it seemed too real for him. She looked around, trying to figure out a way to stop this. She saw Mulder's gun on the floor and that was it. She wriggled with the ropes that covered her wrists. It finally loosened! She quickly untied her ropes and silently picked up Mulder's gun. Then, she took out her gun in her holster.
Kenny started praying again, finishing up the job. After this, everyone who cause me pain will be dead. Dr. Mark Greene will be dead. His candle and his time is almost up. It's almost too perfect.
Little did Kenny Law know, not everything works out perfectly...
A bullet burned through his back.
The long beep was torture. No one at this hospital could do anything about it. The tone taunted them, causing them all pain. However, Doug Ross, Carol Hathaway and so many others decided not to give up their friend, mentor and boss.
Mark Greene was in trauma one, on the table. Nurse Hathaway was doing compression and Dr. Ross was using the defibrillator. John Carter, Anna Del Amico, Lydia Wright and Conni Oligario were also there, trying to save his life. All of them had tears in their eyes. Carol had only a couple of tears rolling down as she compressed his chest and Doug tried hiding his tears in-between shocks. A part of them had given up.
"I don't think he's coming back," Carter said sadly. Carol looked at Carter and she stopped her compression. She looked at Doug, who held on to the paddles so tightly, and finally shook her head. Their friend was gone. Carol wiped her cheeks and eyes, only making more tears to come pouring out. Carter came up to Dr. Ross and gently took the paddles out of his hands. He rubbed his eyes again, trying to pull back the tears. But seeing Carol cry threatened his eyes to spill. None of them decided to turn off machines or announce the time of death. Carol, Doug, and Carter stayed behind, while the others left.
The three could not face the body. They let him down.
"Why don't you try one more time: I'm sure it'll work," said a familiar voice. The three whirled around and saw Mark, with his eyes opened.
"Mark! You're all right!!" Carol said, in amazement and relief. They all ran to his sides. Carol and Doug were too busy hugging his friend, while Carter checked the machines. His face was full of astonishment.
"Vitals are normal. Dr. Greene's back," Carter stated. "It's a miracle."
Agent Scully held the gun, as she shot Kenny Law. Little did she know, she just saved Mark Greene's life and stopped the spell. Chris Law whirled around and saw that Scully shot his brother. As he was about to attack, Scully, with her quick reflexes, shot down Chris on the shoulder. He went down and the wall of flames subsided, revealing Fox Mulder, on the ground. When he saw the blaze was gone, his fear disappeared. When he saw Scully, relief covered his eyes. Scully came to Mulder.
"Are you okay?" Both of them said at the same time. They both smiled, relieved it's all over. Mulder picked up his cell phone and called the ER and asked for a familiar nurse. Nurse Hathaway sounded like she was crying, but happiness was in her voice.
"Agent Mulder, Dr. Greene is all right now. Thank you," Carol said. "Is Agent Scully all right?"
"Yeah, we're both fine. It's all over now." As Mulder hung up, the police entered and took care of the injured Chris and Kenny Law. Mulder saw Scully at the alter and he walked behind her.
"I still don't get one thing, Mulder: you said that the ritual won't die, until it's over. How come I managed to stop it?"
"According to the voodoo references, one way to stop the ritual is for someone who doesn't believe to suspend the ceremony."
"So, you're saying that my skepticism saved you?" Scully looked amused.
"I know how much you hate being the damsel. So, I let you have the chance in being the knight," Mulder smiled.
"Agent Mulder!" Detective Carson called out, behind them. Mulder and Scully went to him, kneeling down next to Kenny Law's body. His body was quickly decaying. As a matter of fact, it already decayed and some bone began to show. The smell was absolutely horrible. Mulder held his nose and choked, while Scully, who was used to this, gasped and wrinkled her nose.
"Oh, God. Mulder, his body... it looked like he died months ago."
"Well, according to you, he did," Mulder replied.
Fox Mulder and Dana Scully went back to County to get some statements from the ER workers, but got a lot more than they bargained for. After taking statements, they headed for the doors to go home.
"Agents Mulder, Scully!" They both turned around and saw Mark Greene running after them. His face was much more brighter than when they first met a couple of days ago.
"I would like to apologize about my behavior during your investigation. I had no right to take it out on you like that. I acted like a pain in the butt--" His words were interrupted by one person clapping in the background.
"I agree!" It was Doug Ross. The workers in the admit desk started laughing and Mulder smiled.
"Anyway, thanks for everything you've done," Mark smiled.
"We're just glad you're okay, Dr. Greene," Scully said.
The agents left and Mark Greene walked back to the admit desk. Everything felt all right now. A huge burden had been lifted off. He sighed in relief.
The ER was literally empty, because of the rain outside. Mark felt like this weather didn't match his mood today. He was happy and this was the first time in a long time. But one thing has to be settled. One thing.
"Hey, Carol," Mark walked to the smaller work station of the ER. Carol was there, writing a couple of reports. She looked up and when she saw her friend, she smiled.
"Thank you... for being honest with me," he said, slowly.
"No problem," she said, looking down to continue her work.
"Can I... um," Mark started and Carol looked up again, "can I have that piece of paper?"
"You already have it," she smiled. "Check your pocket." Mark reached for his pocket and it was in there. She put it in there. She knew he was going to be all right.
"Hey, buddy! Catch!" A foam football came spiraling towards Mark and he caught it. Doug threw the ball at him. "Come on, let's play. You and me against Carter and Malik."
"All right, loser buys lunch at the cafeteria," Mark said, as he passed the ball to Carter.
"Who would want to?" Doug joked.
He nervously played with the small piece of paper in his hand, as the number he dialed rang and rang.
This is it. They didn't communicate ever since she left. He, at first, couldn't understand why she left when he begged her to stay. In the movies, that never happened. They always stayed. He thought it was going to be like the movies. After she left, he felt confused and stupid. Why did he just do that?? Now, he knows that she should know how he felt about her, before it's too late.
"Hello," said the voice in the other line. That voice. He missed it so much.
"Hello, Susan? It's Mark."
"Dear Lord, today we gather to before you to pass another soul to heaven..." Father Brown started the funeral.
Family and friends got together again for the reburial of Kenny Law. Little did they know that he was alive. The police lied to them, saying he didn't die at the hospital, but he vanished from his family and friends and lived his own life. One night, as he was walking by a warehouse, he was involved in a drive-by shooting. That was the story and they believed it. Except one.
Chris Law knew what happened. And it was no use telling the truth. No one would believe him.
"Hey, Scully. Can you pass the orange chicken?" Scully, who was sporting a Band-Aid on her forehead, gave him a take-out carton from the table. They arrived at DC just two hours ago and Assistant Director Skinner made them finish the report. What's worse, both of them have to write a separate report.
"Since we learned a little about voodoo, you wanna try it out on Skinner?" This comment made her smile. She also hates Skinner when he does this.
"Don't tempt me, Mulder," she said.
They ordered take-out, because they knew this might take a while. Stuck in the small basement office can make you a little insane. Scully had her laptop and Mulder had his computer and since Scully didn't have her own desk, she used a small corner of Mulder's big desk. They both started typing away, because they wanted to get it done as soon as possible. Even though they have nothing at their apartments to look forward to (except Mulder's adult video collection), after this case, they both rather be there than here.
"Hey, Scully. I need a pencil." She searched her bag, but found nothing, then she looked up on the ceiling. He followed her stare. All his pencils were sharpened and he threw them to stick on the ceiling. Mulder waited a pencil to drop. It's gonna be a long night...
Dana Scully's Field Report:
Fox Mulder's Field Report:
End Notes:Ta-da!!! Please tell me what you think. H2OLilies8@aol.com
I would like to thank all my friends out there! Regina, Crystal, Kimmy, Nicole, Vickie, Sara and my family. You guys are the ones who introduced me to XF... and DD
To Chris Carter or Michael Crichton: If you have a writer's chair open, my e- mail address is on the top!
"We can't fix everything." --Dr. Mark Greene
"Why did they assign me to you in the first place, Mulder? To debunk your work, to rein you in, to shut you down..." --Agent Dana Scully
"Give a man a fish, you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish, you feed him for life." --My mom (I know she didn't make up the quote, but she's the first person I heard it from.)
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