Title: Pain, Hope, Death, and Fear
Summary: Mulder fights for a way to deal with a deadly virus Scully has been infected with, and struggles to deal with a death in his life. (Not Scully's)
Author's Note: Set sometime after Three of A Kind, you decide when.
Byers looked outside the window of the cheap van Langly was driving him in. The trees were flying past them, the small white lines on the highway looking like little specks of white against a great expanse of black.
The stars were bright in the sky, making patterns, that one could only define simply if they wanted to. Right now, through the stars, he could see Suzanne's face. Suzanne Modeski's, the woman he loves.
It had been only that morning he had received a phonecall from Suzanne telling him she wanted to see him, desperately. She'd admitted to need him, and professed her love before hanging up, telling him to hurry to her hotel room.
Byers didn't know how safe that actually was, but he couldn't deny her.
Love conquers all, isn't that what that line in some story said?
He glanced at his watch and urged Langly to drive faster towards the hotel she said she would be staying at.
Langly had agreed to drive him, while Frohike claimed to have other places to be. Mulder seemed to be lost in his thoughts these days, while Scully seemed unapproachable at all, closing off completely from everyone around her. That's probably why Mulder seems to be so lost these days, why he had begun to lose weight.
He thought about Suzanne again. It had shocked him when he found out she had a fiancé, and surprised him even more when he realized she trusted him. He could still feel the soft caress of her hand when she handed him the ring, smiling at him sadly... She knew it would be awhile before they'd see each other again.
He was damn glad he would see her tonight.
Thoughtfully, he wondered if she had changed. If she had dyed her hair, changed her make-up style, changed her hair style. If her personality had changed, if she'd grown weary of life.
Not that she'd ever been jubiliant.
She'd always had a goal though, to expose the men, it was a cause she fought for with profound determination... he didn't think a dozen armed men could stop her from accomplishing her goals in life.
For now though, he would be satisfied by simply seeing her alive and well.
Mulder woke up with a start, and warily glanced at the clock beside his bed. Only 4:27 a.m. He closed his eyes, trying to fall asleep again, but he couldn't. He didn't know why, but it happened often, more often lately then before.
He was having a bout with insomnia.
He got up, ignoring the chill that went through his body as he headed to his dresser, clad only in his black boxers. He rummaged through a drawer until he came up with a bottle filled with sleeping pills. He left it on his desk, and headed to the kitchen pouring himself a glass of water.
He looked at the water in his glass dubiously. Everything had been at a standstill in his life lately. Looking for Samantha, no new cases, hell the only thing that was changing was his relationship with Scully and that was for the worse.
He didn't think it was because of Diana. Hell she had managed to open up to him, a little while after the incident. Now though, he didn't know what he had done wrong. She just seemed.. distant. It wasn't as if she didn't speak to him, nothing like that. Her eyes spoke for her though, looked as if they didn't want to be there, as if it were just a job. She didn't argue as scientifically as she used to, only would say it's impossible, end of case. The second the case was over she would head home.
He could tell her she could leave if she wanted to, but he wouldn't. He needed her too much.
If he could have only one wish it would be that she would open up to him again, as much as before, and maybe even more.
It was strange, but not unexpected. He knew it would happen one day or the other, now he just had to wait until she felt she could open up to him again.
It would only be a matter of time.
Every wish has it's consequence though.
Margaret Scully glanced at the man in front of her, Walter Skinner. He had been asking her for a few nights now if she wanted to get dinner with him, and she had finally agreed. She'd never really talked to the man before, and now that she did, she realized he wasn't the mean stern, strict boss her daughter wrote him out as.
She wondered what her daughter would think if she knew she was on a date with this man. She had only agreed because she knew her deceased husband would want her to move on, as difficult as it was.
Deep down inside, she knew Dana would be horrified. Surprised also, shocked, hurt too. But she knew she had to move on, to find new love. All of her kids had left home, and she couldn't stand being alone anymore.
He looks at her and smiles. He always wanted a woman like Scully in his life, a woman to stand by him through all his woes, like Scully did for Mulder. That realization though, told him that Scully was Mulder's and he had to keep searching. Which led him to Mrs. Scully, who seemed to be one of the most enchanting woman he had ever met in his life.
God he sounded like a poet.
Maybe he was one. Maybe he could woo Margaret Scully into falling in love with him. Let's see, he thought. Let me count the ways in which I love you. One, two, ten, a thousand, a million...
No, that wouldn't work. It was dishonest, and when did something as corny as that work on Scully by Mulder? Never.
It was nearing the end of the night and he knew he had to say goodbye. He wanted to see the woman again, that was for sure.
"Margaret?" he asked uncertainly.
"Yes Walter?," she asked while standing up pushing the chair in under the table.
"I want to see you again," he admitted.
"I don't know what Dana's going to think about this," Mrs. Scully explained, trying to keep her distance, though she knew she didn't exactly want to keep him at arms length.
"I'm asking if you want to see me again," Skinner snapped.
"Alright," Margaret Scully agreed.
Skinner looked up at the woman in surprise. He hadn't expected her to say yes as easily as she had, and he realized he'd been comparing her too much with Scully. Scully was her own person, Scully learned to be strong maybe by her father and mother together, maybe by Mulder, but who's to say it was only one of them. It was probably the influence of all of them together. Skinner smiled and walked outside, Margaret Scully following him.
Alex Krycek stared at Marita. He had helped her escape from the testing area, easier then it might have been since most of the syndicate had been burned alive, and the smoking man frankly didn't care about one lone test subject.
He cared though.
He had gotten a cure from the Russians, and Marita had started to feel better, look better, and sound better after he had injected her with it.
Though she still wasn't 100% it was enough for Krycek to be satisfied with.
He loves her.
At least he thinks he does. He looks at her face, her pale face, and leans forward towards her taking her hand and squeezing it.
"It's going to be okay... okay," he promised.
It was probably the tenth time he'd said it that day alone. He didn't care though, nothing mattered except for him and Marita surviving colonization without becoming drones, living together, fighting the evil, and being happy.
It was a distant dream in his mind.
As evil as he knew he had become, this was what love he had left in his heart.
His love for Marita.
"Mom?" Scully asked curiously, hearing her mother's anxious voice on the other end of the phone line.
"Hi Dana. I need to tell you something," Mrs. Scully said, sounding like an over excited teenager.
"About what mom?" Scully asked, wondering what might have made her mother sound so.. happy.
"About your boss. Assistant Director Walter Skinner," Mrs. Scully divulged.
Scully frowned against the phone in confusion. What would her mother have to say about Skinner to her.
"We're involved Dana," Maggie Scully announced.
Involved? Skinner? Mom? No. That's impossible, she reasoned.
A knock resonated through the apartment, and Scully looked up at the door. She knew her mother would think her hanging up would be an excuse to run away from dealing with the emotions she was feeling, but the fact was it wasn't.
"Dana," Maggie demanded, waiting for an answer.
"Listen mom, there's someone at my door. I'll call you back okay?"
"Dana, don't hide from this..." Mrs. Scully said warningly.
"I'm not mom. I really have to go," Scully responded.
"Call me soon Dana. Bye honey," Maggie replied quickly.
Scully hung up and walked to her door. She decided it would have to be Mulder with what little social life she had and she swung the door open.
It wasn't Mulder.
Byers knocked on the hotel room door Suzanne had said she'd be staying in. She opened it almost immediately, and opened her arms waiting for an embrace. Byers held her for a few moments in his arms before letting go.
"What's going on?" he asked.
He looked around the hotel room. Computers were hooked up, chemicals in bottles lying on tables, and pills were scattered around over her suitcase and on desktops.
"I've been busy," she replied.
"What is it Suzanne?" he asked.
"I found out something John," she admitted, her eyes looking frightened.
"What? What did you find out?" Byers asked.
"They've been out in Africa," Suzanne sputtered, her hands shaking.
"Who?" Byers asked, now genuinely confused.
"The Cigarette Smoking man. Diana Fowley, I don't know if you know her?" Suzanne asked.
"I know her, Mulder's old flame," Byers said carefully. Suzanne looked up surprised.
"I thought Scul-" Byers cut her off.
"Partner's that's it," Byers said quickly.
"Alright," Suzanne said staring at Byers.
"What's going on in Africa?"
"Have you heard of the Marburg virus and Ebola virus?," she questioned.
"Yeah. Haemorrhagic fevers. As I understand it recently the Marburg virus was tied to almost 60 deaths in Africa"
"Then you know that there's no cure and that the fever is transmitted to people following contact with infected animals or contact with infected patients and body fluids," Suzanne asked shakily.
"Yes. Why're you telling me all this Suzanne? Africa is far away, what does this have to do with you, with me?" Byers remarked.
"Let me continue John. You know that both of them are filoviruses. That the Ebola virus is deadlier then the Marburg. Diana and the Smoking man seemed to have gotten a sample of one of the two viruses," Suzanne revealed.
"What?" Byers asked now shocked.
"They've gotten a sample John," Suzanne said softly.
"How, when, what..." Byers demanded trailing off.
"They were talking about infecting someone... the destroying the bottle containing the disease, so that only that person would be infected. But John, if one person is infected, then there's a good chance there will be an epidemic. If it's the Ebola virus, it's worse. Marburg is harder to spread."
"Who are they going to infect... Mulder?" Byers questioned.
"No it's a woman. I heard them using the words she."
"You were in Africa? You were there?" Byers asked
"Yes," she said.
"I had, I followed them."
"That was dangerous Suzanne" Byers chastised angrily.
"I had to know what they were doing. So I could expose them."
"I could have lost you," Byers exclaimed suddenly overcome with emotion, wrapping her in his arms again.
"I know," she said simply.
They stayed locked in that embrace for a long time.
Mulder heard the phone ring and reached lazily for it. He picked it up and didn't say anything for a second.
"Hello?" he asked.
"Is this Agent Mulder?" someone asked.
"Yes," he replied.
There was a pause on the other side, and Mulder suddenly realized something was wrong. It was one of those damn voices, from hospitals, from the coroner's office, an uncaring voice.
God please let Scully be okay, he prayed silently.
"Your mother is dead," the man reported.
Mulder looked at the phone in shock. No. No his mother couldn't be dead. Who would do that.. God his mother...
He didn't care his mother had held things away from him, he still loved her, she was his mother. She was his mother Dammit, and now she was dead.
He had no family left. None.
Except for Scully.
Who refused to open up to him.
"I'm on my way," Mulder said somberly.
Frohike dialed her number. He was bored, and since he hadn't been able to reach Mulder, he figured Mulder would be with Scully. She picked it up after a few rings.
"Scully," a trembling, not Scullylike voice replied.
He noticed something right away. Something about her voice. Was it trembling? No, no Scully's voice doesn't tremble.
"Are you okay Agent Scully?" he asked. He couldn't help it. She hesitated. He felt her hesitation as she spoke.
"I-I think so."
"Is Mulder there, Frohike?"
"No I uhh actually I thought he was with you," Frohike explained. "That's why I called"
"Then he's missing," she whispered.
What the hell is going on, Frohike thought. Scully sounded scared. That doesn't happen. At least not in front of him.
"He's probably out watching porn or something," Frohike said keeping his voice light and soothing. Mulder probably just went out to see a movie or something, he was pretty sure of that.
"I don't think so Frohike."
"Think you can come down to my apartment Frohike?"
"What is it Scully?" Scully does not invite me to her apartment, she never has before. What the hell is going on, where the hell is Mulder?
"I don't know," she said slowly.
"I'm on my way," Frohike indicated.
Marita looked at Krycek fearfully.
"Alex, if they've somehow managed to contain the virus.."
Krycek looked at her stubbornly, unwilling to believe they had done what she spoke of. "Marita, maybe Suzanne Modeski is mistaken. Maybe it's something else."
"Who would they infect?" Marita asked. "Who out of everyone in this world would they want to infect that's a women?"
"If Cassandra Spender was alive I would say her. Since she isn't though I think it might be Mulder's partner, Scully."
"Agent Scully? Why?"
"I don't know."
"We have to help her."
"What?" Krycek asked. He was surprised, he'd admit it. Why would Marita want to help Scully.
"Because Alex. Because I don't want to see anyone else suffer by the hands of the Consortium."
"Yes Marita, but what are we going to do?"
"We need to get there Alex. Leave Mexico, and get to Washington D.C as fast as possible, before there's an epidemic. We'll find a way to contain it, we have to," Marita said desperately.
"If that's what you want?" Krycek asked dubiously.
"That's what I want," Marita said firmly.
"Let's get the show on the road," Krycek said grimly.
"Frohike" Scully said in greeting as the door opened. She hadn't closed the door after the 'incident'. Frohkie had a feeling that something wasn't just wrong. Something was very very wrong. "Keep your distance from me Frohike. I don't know what happened."
"What are you talking about?" Frohike asked bewildered.
"They injected me with something," she said. She remembered the man tackling her vividly in her mind, before shaking the vision out of her mind.
Scully remained silent. How was she supposed to tell Frohike that a man had tackled her down, and all she remembered was seeing the smoking man's face at the door, and Diana kneeling down and injecting her with something. Not when Frohike would tell Mulder.
"I don't know," she lied.
Not when Frohike would tell Mulder, because Mulder trusts Diana and not Scully. It's as simple as that, and if Scully tells him it was Diana he wouldn't believe her writing it off as jealousy.
At least that's what she thought.
"It's probably nothing Scully," Frohike replied.
Nothing. Nothing?!?! She remembered the last time someone had said basically the same thing, when she'd talked to those women, those abductees and Mulder had said it was nothing, that she was worrying about nothing.
Only awhile later she found out she had cancer.
Scully had been thinking though. Diana wouldn't let herself be seen if she were doing something wrong, which meant that there was something they obviously knew that she didn't.
She couldn't help but think that they knew she wouldn't be able to live and wouldn't be able to tell Mulder, which was why they showed their faces to her.
Little did she know how close she was to the truth.
"If it's nothing why would they inject me with it?" Scully asked. Before Frohike could answer his cell phone had gone off. Scully backed off and leaned against the wall as he answered it.
Let that be Mulder, she thought to herself with what little hope she had left.
"Hello?" Frohike asked.
"Frohike it's Byers. Where are you?"
"I'm at Scully's apartment," Frohike said.
"Why are you there?" Byers asked suspiciously.
Frohike looked at Scully for permission before speaking to Byers.
"She was hurt, injected with something and I can't get through to Mulder."
Silence on the other end. Frohike started to wonder if Byers had even heard him.
"When did this happen?" a female voice asked. It wasn't Byers anymore it was Suzanne.
"A few hours ago," Frohike responded.
He heard them discussing something too soft for him to distinguish. What he knew for sure was that they had said was Ebola, which didn't make sense under the circumstances.
"Don't go near her, don't touch her. We're on our way," Byers said and hung up before Frohike answered.
Frohike glanced at Scully. She wasn't paying attention to him though, she was looking out her window with a look of pure disdain on her face.
"What is it Scully?" Frohike asked.
"Either I've lost my mind or that," she said pointing outside the window towards a car, "is Alex Krycek and Marita Covurrubias."
Mulder wasn't allowed to see his mother's body. He decided he would stay in her home for the night, ane ended up weeping while he went around the house. God his mother... They never had good relations but that didn't matter. Deep down inside he loved his mother, and he knew his mother loved him.
He went in the shower, letting the water fall over his head. He basically stopped thinking, thinking only of the hot water that was falling over his body. He shampooed his hair, and waited for the water to go cold, before getting out.
Everything hit him again.
His mother was dead.
He was alone.
Except for Scully.
He decided he needed to call her, to see how she was doing. To tell her what had happened. He needed her comfort. He dialed her home number, and was greeted not with her voice but with Frohike's.
"Hello?" Frohike asked.
Mulder paused. Maybe he dialed the wrong number, pushed the wrong speed dial.
"Frohike? Hey, I thought I dialed Scully's number."
"Where are you Mulder?" Frohike asked.
"I'm at my mother's... Where's Scully?" He didn't want to elaborate, at least not until Scully knew what was going on.
"She's not here," Frohike said.
"What do you mean she's not there? What are you doing there then?"
"She just left." Mulder heard Frohike take a deep breath. "She left with Krycek and Marita Covurrubias."
Mulder looked at the phone and hit it roughly with the palm of his hand.
"I think my phone's screwed up," Mulder said laughing nervously. "I heard Scully left with Krycek and Marita, what were you saying?"
"That's exactly what I said."
It'd taken what felt like hours before Mulder was taking the exit that led to her apartment. Frohike had refused to talk anymore on the phone, worried that the phone's might be tapped, that someone might be listening.
He wondered who was there with Frohike. Was Langly and Byers there also? Why would Scully call Frohike for help and not him?
He had basically not eaten the whole day, since his mother's death. It had stolen every last bit of energy from him, and he was sure he was running only because of adrenaline.
Why the hell would Scully go with Marita and Krycek. It didn't make sense, nothing was making sense. His head felt clouded, he couldn't pinpoint anything in his mind, and if anyone were to ask him when his birthday was he was sure he wouldn't be able to answer.
Everything was just so sudden.
He stopped when he reached her apartment, and jogged into it, continuing to jog up the stairs. When he stood in front of her apartment door he paused.
Whatever was waiting for him wasn't good.
Whatever he was going to hear wasn't good.
He thought of his mother. It was a gunshot wound that had killed her, had struck some part of her CNS, and it was over right away. He supposed he should be happy that she didn't die in pain.
In a way, it would have shocked him more if she died naturally, if she died in her sleep.
He took a deep breath, and exhaled before knocking. He heard footsteps, and the latch opening, and knew that those footsteps didn't belong there. He knew Scully's footsteps, he knew the sound of her opening the door, and it scared the crap out of him that it in fact wasn't Scully opening the door.
The door swung open, and there was Frohike, with a tense expression on his face. Mulder felt the tightness around him, the tense air, and could swear it was choking him.
His mother dead, and now Scully was gone.
He was alone.
Completely, utterly, sadly, alone.
He needed Scully, needed her more than any stupid alien, needed her more than the truth, hell he didn't even want the truth if she wasn't there beside him when he found it.
Scully was his best friend, in fact more than his best friend. Words couldn't describe the relationship they had forged over the years. Sure it was strained sometimes, like it had been lately, but the better part of their relationship was still lurking deep in their hearts, threatening to come out anyday, anytime.. anywhere.
He glanced quickly at Frohike again, before scanning the room behind him. It was only then he noticed Byers, and Suzanne. No Langly though.
"Why did she go with them?" Mulder couldn't help but blurt out, without thinking.
"Because she had no choice, because of everyone around her, because of you" Frohike granted, his eyes betraying no emotion.
Because of me, Mulder thought. Because of me?!? Why would she go with Krycek and Marita because of me? Dammit Frohike, don't leave me in the dark, Mulder thought to himself.
"She was infected with something" Byers said interrupting his thoughts.
"By who?" Mulder asked, narrowing his eyes. He looked at the part of the carpet where there was a minute way he could tell that was where Scully had been pushed down, where the small specks of the carpet were waved back in a way different then the rest of the carpet. It was almost indistinguishable to him, but he realized something very wrong had happened here. Someone had pushed her down, and probably injected her then.
He knew that was where she was infected with whatever they injected her with.
But what would they inject her with and why? They had been at a standstill, they weren't going forward with anything. There was no reason for them to hurt Scully, to hurt me, he thought.
Who would do this to her? How would Scully let someone in if she didn't know who it was? If it was Marita and Krycek, how could she let them in? When did it happen, yesterday? Today?
"By who?" Mulder repeated.
"She didn't say who infected her. She said she didn't remember"
"Bullshit" Mulder said. Somehow, someway, he knew Scully knew who had done it. Could feel Scully knowing who had done it. He'd always had a deep connection with her, a spiritual connection.
Which is how, even though she wasn't there, he knew she was hiding something. Hiding who did this to her. And for what reason?
Too many questions, too little answers.
It couldn't have been Marita and Krycek, Frohike would have said it was, if it in fact was them.
Then why had they been here, and why would she go with them?
Byers seemed to read his mind.
"We think we know what she might have been infected with. Which is why she left with Krycek and Marita." Byers continued.
"With what? What was she infected with?" Mulder asked his eyes now focusing solely on Byers.
"What sort of virus? The flu? A deadly virus?" Mulder asked feeling as if he were talking with his mother. Mother could I have chocolate; not until after lunch. Why Mother; Because it's not good for you. But I really, really want chocolate; After lunch Honey.
That of course, was before Samantha had been abducted.
Mulder narrowed his eyes when he realized they hadn't responded. He looked from Byers to Frohike to Suzanne, before looking at Byers again.
"We're not sure if our assumptions are correct.," he said uncertainty plaguing his voice for the first time.
"Cut the crap and tell me what you think" Mulder snapped.
"Ebola, or another disease that is basically just as deadly, Marburg" Suzanne said.
Ebola, Mulder thought trying to place the name of the virus, and then it hit him. The virus that killed 244 people. The virus, the deadliest virus and deadliest disease in the world.
Deadlier than the Aids virus
The Ebola virus has no cure.
Mulder blinked, trying to control his emotions. Outwardly he looked as normal as ever, inwardly he was a man raging a war.
First her cancer, then Antarctica, now this. Still one answer remained unanswered, as to why she would leave with Marita and Krycek.
Why would Marita be with Krycek in the first place.
"Why did she go with Marita and Krycek?" he asked.
"They have a medical facility they could take her too. It was the Consortium's, but when they were all burned, it was forgotten about. If she has any chance against this thing, she had to go with them"
"How was she when you saw her?" Mulder asked.
"She was... scared" Frohike said. Mulder nodded feeling stupid.
"Does she have her cell phone?" he asked.
"Yeah" Frohike said. "I think she's waiting for your call"
"She's going to have to wait a little longer" Mulder said and left the room. He went to his car, and went to the only place he thought he could go to, to find answers.
Scully got out of the car uncomfortably. She still didn't trust Marita and Krycek, and she felt fine. Perfectly fine. Not even a headache.
She only agreed to go though, because she knew the incubation period was between 2-21 days. It could happen anytime, strike her without warning, if in fact it was the Ebola virus.
She was doubtful it was though.
How would the Smoking Man and Diana Fowley be able to smuggle a lethal force like that into the country, contain it properly, and manage to infect me with it without infecting themselves, she wonderd.
Actually probably very easily, with the connections they had, she realized.
But she had to agree to go with Marita and Krycek... She wouldn't want to be the cause of an epidemic.
Watching thousands die.
Watching Mulder die too, because he would probably be near her the whole time, comforting her, waiting for herself to die.
She knew him well enough to know he would do that.
Even if it was a trap, if it was just a plan to kill her themselves, at least she wouldn't live knowing she might have caused an epidemic.
She followed Marita and Krycek into the building. It was huge. She was surprised nobody, homeless people or whoever, had taken residence there. Everything seemed to be in good condition too.
The first thing that hit her, was the musky smell of a building not being used. She scrunched her nose for a second, before glancing at her cell phone.
Mulder still hadn't called.
Marita and Krycek led her to the isolation ward, and stopped in front of one of the doors. Scully waited as they opened it, and went inside wordlessly when they had, watching them lock it.
She looked around the room. There was bathroom off to the left of the surprisingly large bed, which was covered in plastic. There was a small fridge to the right of the bed, and a television in front of the bed. There was a window directly on top of the bed, which had a simple screen.
Household bleach lay diagonally to her right on a table, and a small diary next to it. She looked at it and shook her head. She wouldn't open it, at least not yet.
She looked at her cell phone again. Mulder should've called by then, unless something had happened to him. Or if he was looking for answers himself.
She looked up at the door, with a small window, to see Marita and Krycek watching her. Marita had a hand on Krycek's shoulder, and Krycek had raised one of his own hands and was caressing it gently.
This was going to be uncomfortable, she realized.
This was going to be very uncomfortable.
Langly looked at the hotel room Byers had gone into. Byers should have called him by now, but hadn't. He wondered what was going on, and hesitated to go inside. He knocked on the door, but there was no answer. He turned the knob and was surprised to see it opened.
Wherever they'd gone, he knew they had been in a hurry.
Did he run away with her, Langly couldn't help but wonder.
That didn't make sense though, not at all.
Why would Byers run away with her, he would've told them at least. It wasn't as if he or Frohike would have stopped him.
He touched one of the vials on a table, and lifted it up, when a ringing sound came out of nowhere. He literally jumped, the vial crashing on the floor, before he realized it was only his cell phone.
"Langly" he said loudly on the phone.
"Langly its Byers. Where are you?"
Byers, Langly thought relief flooding his senses.
"I'm in Suzanne's hotel room, where the hell are you two? You left the door unlocked" Langly chastised.
"Oops" Byers said, and Langly couldn't remember a time in his life when Byers had said oops. "We're at Scully's apartment"
"Scully's apartment" Langly said slowly. "What are you guys doing there?"
"There's a situation" Byers said. "Listen just go to our home, Suzanne and I will be there soon, and Frohike is already there, I think. He left about a half hour ago"
"Alright" Langly agreed and hung up the phone. He looked at the crashed vial on the floor and decided he'd clean that up before leaving the place.
"What are you doing here?" Skinner demanded when he swung open the door. Mulder glanced at him assertively.
"I need some help. I need an appointment with the Smoking Man," he said.
Don't you dare deny me now you bastard, don't you dare. I need it this time, only this time, at least this time, just so she lives, Dammit don't you understand, he has the cure. He has to.
"Why?" Skinner asked, adjusting his glasses, and deepening his frown.
"It's life depen-" Skinner cut him off.
"Cut the crap, why do you need to make a deal with him? Is it Scully?"
"Yeah" Mulder said, refusing to elaborate. Skinner sensed the stubborness in his voice, and knew Mulder wouldn't say anything more, but he also knew he couldn't put Mulder in the devil's hands.
Mulder and Skinner locked eyes, both of them refusing to continue. A confused voice behind them broke their silence.
"Fox? Fox what are you doing here?" Mrs. Scully asked holding a brown package that probably contained breakfast.
What the hell is going on here, Mulder thought. Why is Mrs. Scully with Skinner?
"Margaret? What are you doing here?" Skinner asked looking at her tenderly.
"I wanted to see you. I thought you might want breakfast" Mrs. Scully said.
"Oh" Skinner said smiling now, before turning back to Mulder and frowning. "Well Mulder? What is it that happened?"
"It's..nothing" Mulder said. "Nothing" he insisted, glancing from Mrs. Scully to Skinner. Sure as hell, something was going on between them, and that meant Skinner would tell Mrs. Scully that Scully was in trouble... And he didn't want Mrs. Scully to know. At least, unless Scully wanted her to know, which he doubted.
He'd noticed she didn't visit her mother as much since Emily, even spent the last Christmas with him, rather then her mother.
Mulder's eyes darted from Skinner to Mrs. Scully.
"Listen, I've got to go. I'll be in touch" he assured, and walked out of the room.
"Fox?" Mrs. Scully called from Skinner's apartment. Mulder turned around looking at her, waiting for her to speak. "Fox, where's Dana?," she questioned, a look of pure fear in her eyes.
"I don't know," Mulder lied, and he turned away from her again. Mrs. Scully took action, and grabbed Mulder roughly by the shoulder.
"I know something's wrong Fox. Where is she?"
Mulder glanced at Scully's mother, who appeared to be angry, angrier then he'd ever seen her.
"I don't know.. I'll find out though"
Mrs. Scully relinquished her hold on him and let him go. Mulder left, feeling somewhat.. weak.
Mrs. Scully had almost gotten the truth out of him. A woman he could have easily lied to if his mind was set to it.
The truth was, his mind wasn't set to it.
Frankly at the moment, he didn't give a rat's ass if she knew her daughter was sick, because she was *his* Scully, not hers, not anybody else's. Scully knows that, he knows that, Mrs. Scully probably knows that too.
And she should know that he would do anything in his power to make sure Scully was okay.
He had to find the Smoking man, whatever it took to find him.
He had to find a cure, even if it killed him. Even if he had to make it himself.
She had to live.
She had to.
Byers snuck a look at Suzanne. They had decided to go out for breakfast before meeting up with the rest of the gunmen. He could see the worry on her face. The tension, the need to save Scully. He had that same need.
But he couldn't help but feel happy that Suzanne was with him again.
He felt like a man again.
He glanced at Suzanne again. She was deep in thought even as she munched on the bagel she had wanted.
"Suzanne?" Byers prodded gently.
"It just isn't fair John. I came all this way to be with you, and now I can't. I mean I am, but we can't enjoy ourselves because of them. Because of what they did to Mulder's partner."
"We'll have our chance to be together Suzanne.. I mean, not that I don't want Scully to be well again, but if it does in fact kill her, I'll be free to be with you. Mulder will stop working, or at least won't be working to anybody's satisfaction, Langly and Frohike won't be able to work well, or maybe even at all, without Mulder's help, and that'll be the end of it all. We could leave, live a normal life, out in Texas, or England, or Australia, wherever you want to. It's only a matter of time."
"Time," she echoed.
"Someday" Byers promised, fingering the wedding ring that he had kept on his finger.
"One day," she echoed. She looked up at him and smiled encouragingly, before they continued to eat.
Mulder sat defeated in his car. He wasn't able to find the Smoking Man. Who was to say, where he was anyways. He had looked in his old apartment, at the FBI Headquarters, had even stood outside a military base waiting to see if he would come out.
He hadn't though.
It tore at his heart, to realize he was so helpless at his time of need.
He needed to hear her voice, her encouragement.
He pushed the speed dial on his phone and waited impatiently for her to pick up.
"Mulder?" her anxious voice questioned before he had said a word.
"Where are you?" Mulder asked.
"It's not far Mulder. It's in Richmond"
She was in Virginia, Mulder thought feeling an overwhelming amount of relief. At least they hadn't taken her to Mexico, or Canada, or Alaska, she was still near him.
"What's the address?" Mulder asked. She gave it to him quietly.
"I don't want you to come here Mulder," she said even more softly.
"Why Scully?" he asked mildly surprised, but more confused.
"If, if in fact it is the Ebola virus Mulder, chances are it will be pver within twenty one days. Even, if you do come to see me Mulder, what good would that do? You're going to have to wear one of those level 4 biocontainment suits, and if there's so much as a hole the size a sewing needle would make, you might become infected. It's not a chance I think either of us are willing to take."
Mulder remained silent. He imagined Scully withering away for her last 21 days, or at least the hardest 21 days of her life, all alone, with two people near her she didn't even trust.
"I'll be there soon Scully. I, I need to see if I could get something, a cure..."
"Mulder there is no cure" Scully said, and he imagined her giving him one of those disapproving glares she had mastered. He knew she had that look on her face.
"But..." he argued knowing she was right.
"Mulder I might die, I might live. It's all chance. I still don't think you should come here, not to say I don't want you here, I do, but I don't think you should risk it. I could take care of myself"
He felt as if he were slapped on the face. He didn't speak, if he did he would probably end up saying something he regretted. There was a long pause, before he spoke
"I'm on my way" Mulder said, deciding he had to see her before continuing to search for a cure. He hung up before she could object. knowing she could call back and tell him not to come, but she didn't.
It told him more than any words could say. She needed him there. She didn't have to say it. He felt it.
Marita and Krycek watched her through the small glass window on the door. After a few moment's silence, Marita spoke.
"It's starting," she whispered. Krycek glanced at Scully, then at Marita.
"How do you know?" he asked.
"Look how she's clutching at her stomach. There's supposed to be diffuse abdominal pain when it starts. Look at the sweat breaking out on her forehead, there's also supposed to be profuse sweating, a fever up to 39 degrees celsius, shes' going to start vomiting soon also. It is the Ebola, Alex. I could bet she has a headache right now also. I'm going to go inside there, help her. Help me with the suit Alex" Marita finished.
Krycek glanced at Scully one last time before aiding Marita to put on the suit.
Marita and Krycek watched her through the small glass window on the door. After a few moment's silence, Marita spoke.
"It's starting," she whispered. Krycek glanced at Scully, then at Marita.
"How do you know?" he asked.
"Look how she's clutching at her stomach. There's supposed to be diffuse abdominal pain when it starts. Look at the sweat breaking out on her forehead, there's also supposed to be profuse sweating, a fever up to 39 degrees celsius, shes' going to start vomiting soon also. It is the Ebola, Alex. I could bet she has a headache right now also. I'm going to go inside there, help her. Help me with the suit Alex" Marita finished.
Krycek glanced at Scully one last time before aiding Marita to put on the suit.
Scully felt Marita drive something into her mouth. She didn't argue, she had no choice in the matter. She closed her eyes, unable to look around anymore. Her head throbbed, hurt more when her eyes were open, which was why she came to the conclusion that she should keep them closed.
She could hear Marita say something about the fever being high, before she felt nausea creep up on her. She struggled to get up and went to the bathroom to the corner, letting the wall guide her. She could feel Marita following her, and when she started to throw up, Marita put a steadying hand on her shoulder.
Scully didn't know how much she'd thrown up, until she was sure it was more than the food she'd eaten for the past few days.
Marita glanced at Scully, before looking at the door. She saw Mulder standing there, but he was unable to see inside. She noticed Krycek was trying to hold him back from going inside, without a suit on, Marita moved away from Scully, and ignored the sounds of Scully vomiting. She took one package of bleach and dumped it over her head, before washing herself with disinfectant from a pipe that was connected from outside. When she was sure she didn't have a trace of the virus on her, she motioned for Krycek and Mulder to move back, and she headed outside.
She pulled off the heavy mask and looked at Mulder.
"You're going to have to wear a suit if you want to see her"
"Where are they? The suits?" Mulder questioned, glancing at Scully's face convulsed in pain.
Krycek and Marita left to find him a suit, and it took all he had not to enter the room without it. It wasn't as if the virus was airborne, but if any tiny part of the liquid inside of her contacted him, he would be infected.
He couldn't take that chance, only because if he was infected he wouldn't be able to take care of her.
Marita and Krycek came back with a suit, and he put it on quickly. They made sure there weren't any holes in it, and he entered the room.
"Scully?" he asked hesitantly as he entered the bathroom. She didn't look up, but brushed her hand against his. Mulder wrapped his arms around her waist, unable to really feel her with the bulky suit covering him.
When she was done, she collapsed. He had been holding her, and he pulled her against him, turning her around so she rested against his chest, her head under the heavy mask he wore.
"Mu-Mulder? What are you doing here?" Scully questioned weakly.
"I wanted to be with you Scully. I told you I was coming," he said frowning.
"I, I do-don't remember Mulder," she replied, now clutching at him firmly, trying to make sure it was actually him.
"You want to lie down?" Mulder questioned gently. She whispered a yes, and he led her into the main room. Krycek and Marita weren't at the window anymore, which made him feel more secure.
He helped her lie down, and sat down on the floor next to the small bed. He let his covered hand take hers, and he could almost feel her relax.
"Who did this to you?" Mulder questioned, trying to keep his tone light.
"I don't know, I didn't see" Scully lied, staring out the window.
Mulder glanced at her, knew she was lying the second her mouth opened. He didn't know why though, couldn't figure out why she wouldn't tell him who did it.
He didn't want to pressure her though, in the state she was in, he couldn't.
"Ok" he said, squeezing her hand lightly.
He followed her gaze out the window to the sun setting. Pink mixed with purple and blue, strips of gray, it was beautiful. One of the nicest sunsets he'd ever seen.
He couldn't help but feel it was one of the last she'd see.
Diana sat at the edge of the motel bed, while the Smoking man sat on the chair across from her.
"It's only a matter of time" Diana said to him. "Mulder will be ruined when she's gone, I've seen the way he looked at her"
"She might survive. It's all about luck."
"She might die, a far greater chance that she will die in fact." Diana quickly responded.
"What if Mulder finds out?" The Smoking man asked.
"Mulder won't find out. He trusts me anyways, more than her, I think. I'll deny it, if he suspects"
"If he finds proof?" he queried, lighting another Morley's.
"How?" Diana asked. "It's only you and me now, if you tell him I'll know."
"We're going to have to wait then. See what happens."
The Smoking Man's phone suddenly rang. It wasn't a voice he heard in a long time. It was Strughold.
"Colonization is going to begin soon" Strughold said.
"Where did you hear that?" he asked.
"I overheard them talking about it. You only have three weeks, four at most. Then it's beginning" Strughold continued.
The Cigarette Smoking Man hung up the phone. He glanced at Diana, and spoke.
"That was Strughold."
"What did he want?" Diana asked.
"He didn't want anything. He called me to warn me."
"About what?" Diana asked.
"Colonization will begin within a month."
Skinner waited patiently for Margaret Scully to answer the phone. When she finally answered the phone her voice was shaking and scared.
"Margaret? Maggie what's wrong?" Skinner asked.
"I can't find Dana. I can't find Fox either anymore. I tried their cell phones, and they are off. I tried their home telephones and their answering machines are picking up. Where's my daugter?," she asked her voice trembling.
"Don't worry Maggie. Mulder said he would find her" Skinner reassured.
"What if he can't?," she asked, her voice lowering.
"He will. Where are you Maggie?" Skinner asked.
"I'm at home," she said.
"Don't go anywhere. I'm coming over. We'll find them"
"Hurry," she urged, and hung up. She stared out the window.
There wasn't even a star in the night sky.
Langly and Frohike had reached their home and were researching everything they could on the Ebola Virus. Byers and Suzanne, had said they would go somewhere else to continue the research, to find a cure.
Everyone knew if Scully died, Mulder would be soon to follow.
They searched for hours, finding information that was useless. When the outbreaks had occured, where.. They couldn't even find information on what the virus actually was, and what it caused.
Until they found a website, detailing what would happen day by day.
She had 21 days to live at most, unless she was lucky, and if she was lucky she would be fine by Day 12. The fever would lessen, the vomiting would decrease.
If though, she wasn't better by day 12, she would probably die by day 16.
They couldn't let that happen.
They looked up the scientist that reaserched the disease. They found a name. Dr. D. Heymann. His number was listed also, (41 22) 791 2660. They dialed it. After about three rings a disgruntled voice answered.
"Dr Heymann?" Langly questioned.
"This is going to sound stupid, I wanted to know if you are close to a cure for the Ebola Virus? Or if you have anything you're testing?"
"Why?" Dr Heymann asked.
"It's crucial. I'm calling from the United States, I work for the Department Of Defense, we haven't been getting any reports from you lately."
"That's because I haven't been getting anywhere lately, Sir. You did receive the sample I sent you?"
"Yes, I believe so. So you haven't learned anything else?" Langly asked.
"Alright. Keep on looking" Langly said, not realizing how dumb that sounded and hung up. He looked at Frohike.
"We need to reach Mulder"
"What'd he say?" Frohike asked.
"They have a sample, that might actually work as a cure, with the military"
That's when they heard the unmistakable sound of a doorknob being turned. They turned around in surprise, and watched as the door swung open, unable to move or speak.
Bill Scully looked at his son Matthew. Colonization would begin soon, he knew as much from the Smoking Man, and he would make sure everyone in his family would survive.
His son, his wife, his mother, his brother, his sister, his brother's children, his brother's wife.
He only had one other motive.
That Fox Mulder would die.
That he wouldn't survive. Which is why he decided he wouldn't tell anyone in his family about the truth. About colonization beginning. There was only about three weeks. He would take his whole family on vacation. Save them. Live through everything.
He would claim it was a family reunion. It would work, it'd been years since Dana had seen Charlie.
Everything would go as planned.
His family would survive.
Mulder would die.
All was well in the world.
He looked at his wife who was playing with Matthew, trying to get him to walk to her. He sat down next to his wife, and started to play as well.
Marita Covurrubias stared at Alex Krycek. They had left. Left Mulder and Scully to be alone. Only because they had received the news about colonization.
They couldn't risk their own lives for a woman that had no chance, or a chance as small as a mouse eating a cat.
They would leave, go far away, somewhere where they might have a chance to survive. Mulder was with Scully now, which made it easier to convince Marita to leave.
Krycek continued to drive and took her hand in his.
They would survive. Even if colonization was a month away, they would be ready earlier then everyone else. They would be prepared, and they would survive. Everything would be okay, at least for them.
Mulder looked at Scully and his hand clasping hers. She had, thankfully, managed to fall asleep, He moved onto the bed, and lay down next to her, studying her face.
Even as she slept, her face was locked in a grimace, her hand squeezing his tightly, her other in a ball as if she were in a conscious fight.
When she would argue with him, the more forceful ones, her hands would be like that. He looked at her pale face, and couldn't help but feel guilty about it.
His mother had died too.
It was strange, staring at Scully, knowing he hadn't told her. She was the one that kept him strong during times like these, and know she wasn't there.
She was there, but somewhere else.
Fighting a disease that had no cure, fighting knowing 244 people had died in one outbreak alone.
The tiny chance she had of survival was so small, so distant, that he couldn't hold hope. He couldn't lose hope though.
He had hope. Hope that she'd be alright, hope that it was just a nightmare.
She couldn't die then. Who would he have to keep him sane? No family left, except for her.
Her eyes opened, and Mulder let his hand go to her stomach. She stared at him. He was staring back at her.
She wondered what was going through his mind, why he was looking at her like that. Her stomach ached, painfully. His hand on top of it, did little, but it was better with it there. It was as if he knew she needed it there, that she wanted it there. Somehow he knew, she'd woken up with the sharp pain in her stomach. Which is why he put his hand there.
At least that's what she thought.
She saw his other hand reach for a glass of water. She opened her mouth greedily. She felt as if she were in a desert, walking miles without water.
He helped her sit up, and carefully let her sip from the water. She drank slowly, savoring the taste and when she was done she wanted more. He sensed that and went to get some more.
He came back with more water, and she drank half of that glass before shaking her head, no more. Leaving the glass on the small table beside her bed, he turned on the television. He knew she liked the medical shows that came on, and he left it on ER, leaving the television mute.
She seemed to be thankful, and leaned against his shoulder. Mulder spoke.
"How are you doing?" he asked.
"I'm fine," she said forcefully.
"Honestly Scully. How are you doing?" Mulder reinforced.
"It's not that bad Mulder. I mean it is bad, but, not as bad as it's going to get. My stomach is hurting like hell, my head too, but, I'm okay, really," she replied.
Mulder remembered awhile back, when Scully had been abducted the second time, taken to Antarctica, what the Well Manicured Man had said. 'Aids, the Ebola Virus, they are newborns, the virus that Scully has been infected with walked the planet long before the dinosaurs', or something like that was what he said.
Maybe the Ebola Virus was a newborn. It didn't make a difference now though, she was still on her deathbed.
"Mulder?," she asked softly. He acknowledged her only by pulling her closer to him. The damn biocontainment suit he was wearing made every touch so restrictive for him.
For a moment he thought about telling her about what happened to his mother. Pulling back and looking at her pale face made him think twice. She may act like she was strong, but inside she was waging a war.
Mulder felt her pull away quickly on wobbly legs, and run to the bathroom, collapsing in front of the toilet. Sitting on her knees, her mouth poised over the toilet she started to belch again.
Mulder stood up, and followed her. He looked out the door. Marita and Krycek still hadn't returned.
He kneeled down beside Scully and felt tears threaten. He rarely cried in front of her. This was one of the rare times. The truth was though, she couldn't see him cry. She was too busy throwing up for all she was worth.
The tears spilled, and he couldn't help but feel guilty. He was so weak, Scully was in her time of need and he had to cry. His mother had died and now she was going to die. There was nothing he could do about it, nothing to prevent it. He could only be there for the last few moments of her life. He felt her tense under him, and turn around.
Busted, he thought.
"Mulder, what's wrong. What happened?" Scully asked, knowing something deeper was going on in his mind. Her stomach had settled at least for the moment and she let her hand cup his cheek.
Mulder felt the words come out of his mouth, unable to stop them. He felt as if someone else was saying them, a part of him that he tried to lock deep down inside of him.
"My mother. She died," Mulder whispered.
Day 4 - It will only get worse
Byers looked at the fearful faces of Langly and Frohike. He had opened the door
"What's wrong with you two?" he asked.
"It's yo-you?" Frohike asked, his voice still trembling.
"Who did you think it was?" Byers said exasperated.
"I, I don't know" Frohike admitted. He glanced at Suzanne who was standing beside Byers.
"We came to help you" Suzanne said.
"What have you got so far?" Byers questioned.
"We uhh, we think the military might have something. Maybe even a cure" Langly said.
"Have you contacted Muld-" Byers started before being cut off by Langly.
"We were going to, before you came in"
"Well what are you waiting for?" Suzanne demanded. Frohike picked up the phone and dialed Mulder's cell number. Nobody picked up. Frohike then proceeded in dialing Scully's cell number, and still nobody picked up.
"What the hell is going on here?" Frohike questioned aloud, not expecting an answer.
"I think we need to continue this ourselves. Mulder, I don't think Mulder would want to leave Scully alone with Marita and Krycek" Byers said slowly.
"Continue ourselves? But how? One of us goes to the military?" Suzanne asked.
"Exactly," Byers said grimly.
"Scully, here, drink this" Mulder insisted, putting the glass to her mouth. He knew she was having difficulty swallowing, he could tell by the way she would speak. She had a sore throat, which only meant it would soon get worse.
Scully didn't speak this time, using all of her energy to swallow. When she drank half of the water that was in the glass, she shook her head, no more. Mulder was frustrated, but put the glass down anyways.
"I realize you are going through a lot of pain right now. I know that it's hard for you to swallow, but I doubt you want to die by being dehydrated Scully, when I've been right here the whole time"
Scully lay down slowly, moving to one side, so that Mulder could come next to her. Telling her his mother had died had been a shock to her. She didn't know how he was going on, how he was able to deal with it. She only knew if her mother had died, she wouldn't be as calm as he was right now. She guessed it was because of the condition she was in, and that he was running on adrenaline. She felt Mulder lie down carefully next to her, propped on one side his eyes on her.
She didn't want to talk, her voice was scratchy, blood was coming slowly out of her nose, and it hurt when she moved too. She felt Mulder's gloved hand touch her forehead. She watched hypnotized as his hand moved from her temple to her cheek, before back up again. It was the most soothing thing anyone had ever done for her. He continued to move his hand, sometimes only his fingers over her face. He stopped only to draw circles around.
She knew her eyes had bags under them. She could feel his eyes looking at them right now, wondering how to get rid of them, how to make everything better. The truth was, nothing could make everything better right now.
They had to wait.
Wait it through.
Even if it killed her in the end.
Mulder's cell phone rang abruptly. His hand moved away quickly as if he were a small kid caught doing something wrong. He looked at his cell phone, but Scully grabbed his arm roughly.
"Don't stop Mulder. Please," she thought it was the first time she had ever said please to him. It had the desired effect though, she felt his body relax then continue the minstrations it had started on her face.
As he continued she felt herself go to a state of peace. Sure, the pain was in the way, but she felt herself getting drowsy, and for the first time since the onset of the disease she thought she might be able to get some sleep.
And she did.
"Maggie, I'm sure they are fine." Skinner emphasized for the fiftieth time. He didn't really mind that Maggie Scully was asking him for his help, but when it came to Mulder and Scully... there was nothing they could do. If Mulder and Scully weren't answering their cell phones, there wasn't a damn thing he could do.
Or a damn thing she could do.
"But where would they go? I remember Fox's face, he was afraid Walter. I knew something had happened to Dana then"
"You might have misread his face Maggie. His mother died only the night before he came to see us. He didn't tell me that but, I found out"
"His mother... died?" Maggie asked in a small voice.
"Yes" Skinner said.
"Then, then maybe.. Maybe Dana's with him comforting him" Maggie said slowly.
"Maybe she is" Skinner agreed.
"And there might not be anything wrong with her"
"Nothing wrong with her" Skinner echoed. He knew something was wrong with her though, Mulder had come seeking his help to find Cancer Man. He'd admitted that Scully was in trouble, but then Maggie had appeared and he had remained quiet.
"Fox.. he must be so lonely," Maggie continued softly.
"He has Dana," Skinner assured.
Maggie looked up at him and smiled shyly before speaking.
"And I have you."
"We need to get out of here as soon as possible"
"How will we know if she has died then?" Diana asked.
"We won't. We could only assume she will be."
"Where will we go?"
"Mexico" The Smoking Man said.
"Won't colonization effect Mexico too?" Diana questioned.
"Obviously" Cancer Man snapped. "But we have a better chance of survival there, then in the US"
"We just do"
"What if Scully survives?" Diana asked hesitantly.
"She can't. She won't" Cancer Man remarked. "It'll be over for her before colonization even begins. She's lucky"
Langly crawled slowly through the heating duct he had gotten into. He had been the one that the Gunmen and Suzanne had chosen, and he had agreed to do it. He was regretting it now.
He had been in the duct for hours. He couldn't even find a room with any samples or bottles. Now he felt as if he was going in circles.
He would leave but he didn't remember what direction the exit was. He saw a light up ahead, and prayed it was the exit, or the room where the 'cure' might be.
When he got closer to the light, he could see a room. Bathed in white light, with bodies sprawled around. Well not exactly, not dead bodies, because they were still alive, but people, lying on gurneys.
Tubes were inside of their mouths, needles piercing their upper arms. Men, women, children, black, brown, white, different ages, nothing special about any of them. In fact, they were all distinct, different whether it be in color or race. There were more white people then black, more children then men...but there wasn't a specific pattern he could make out of it. He took out a small camera from his pocket, and took a picture.
He slowly got out of the duct and into the room. The room smelled like death, that smell you get when you find a dead body, or are at a funeral.
He touched one of the men, and realized the man was cold. Ice cold. His skin felt as if he was touching snow. Blotchy, but cold. He moved to a woman next to the man. He touched her, and he pulled his hand back immediately. She was hot. Searing hot.
Puzzled, but intrigued, he moved to a child. He touched the child and realized the child was neither hot, nor cold. It was a mixture. He had his hand on the child for about five seconds and it was icy cold. Then suddenly without warning, the child had turned hot, burning hot.
Langly heard footsteps in the opposite room. He knew he didn't have enough time to climb back into the duct. He climbed under one of the gurney's and waited.
He could swear his heartbeat was beating too loud, enough for someone to hear. He waited for a second, and held his breath.
The door opened, and he watched a man enter. The man scanned the room before his eyes stopped on Langly. They widened, and he let out a shout.
~~Mulder walked slowly towards the light. He saw Scully lying in the darkness, her pale complexion, highlighted only by the light. He moved back to her slowly and kissed her cheek. He was leaving. Forever. To start a new life, away from everything. He started to walk away when he heard an angry voice start speaking to him. "You left her to die" Bill Scully said angrily. "You're mine now" Diana claimed. "She's gone, her funeral's tommorow" Mrs. Scully said her voice tearing at his heart. "It's over. It's all your fault!" an angry voice shouted. He felt blood smear his face. He didn't know where he was now, he was enveloped in darkness, with blood falling over his face. ~~
He woke up in a cold sweat. He threw a hand back gently, looking for Scully next to him, but she wasn't there. He sat up quickly, and scanned the room. She wasn't anywhere. He looked down at the bed, and realized she was in fact, still in bed, but at the end of it, near his feet, curled in a tiny ball. Leaning forward, he pulled her towards him. He let her breathing calm him. Breathe in, Breathe out, he thought. He encouraged her silently. Her breathing was quick even while she slept. labored. He couldn't feel her forehead to check if she had a fever, which he knew she did, only because of the biocontainment suit he still wore. He knew he was exhausted, and hungry, and that he needed to get out of the room to eat, but he couldn't stand leaving her alone.
He was relieved Frohike was coming. Frohike would at least be able to take care of her, he knew Frohike cared for Scully, deeply. Maybe not as deep as he did, but deep enough to know that Scully would be in good hands. He knew he would only leave long enough to eat, and drink something, and then he would return. He couldn't stay away from Scully, he needed to be with her.
He remembered her cancer, and how he had spent the whole time away from her. He couldn't let that happen again. He needed to be with her, maybe not only for himself, but for her too.
He knew even as Scully had laid in her hospital bed during that time, she was worried about him. He didn't want that this time. He couldn't let that happen.
He felt her stir a little in his arms. One of her eyes opened and she looked up at him.
"Mulder?," she asked weakly, her voice scratchy.
"Hold on I'm going to get you some more water," Mulder replied.
Scully nodded, and watched him head methodically to the sink and bring back a glass of water. She sensed he was trying to stay closer to her this morning, then the previous days that had elapsed. She didn't even know how many had anymore. Was it two? four? ten? It didn't really matter though did it. He sat down on the bed, resting against the headboard. She pushed herself towards him until her head was resting against his chest, her hand clutching one of his. He was her support, her backbone, and she knew she needed that if she had any chance of survival. He helped her drink the glass of water, and asked her if she needed anything else. She refused.
"Frohike's coming," Mulder said breaking the silence
"Good. You need to eat, Mulder," Scully said somehow knowing why he had called Frohike.
"I won't be long though. I'm just going to eat and I'm coming back."
"You aren't going to rest?" Scully asked softly, knowing the answer before she even asked the question.
"I won't be able to rest away from you. I think you should know that by now," Mulder said softly.
Scully didn't reply. If she did, it wouldn't be something she would regret, but something she didn't want to say yet. Something that needed time, more time, especially with a man like Mulder. She didn't want to scare him off.
Scully, still leaning against his chest, started feeling self conscious of what she was doing. She moved back, and smiled warily at him.
Mulder looked at Scully. Blood was still coming out of her nose, though slowly. It reminded him of the time she had cancer, except when she did have cancer, the blood wouldn't come continuously, it would come suddenly and stop suddenly.
Mulder stood up bringing back a box of kleenex. He wiped the blood away from her nose gently, wetting another tissue with water to get the dried blood out.
It was only then he looked up and saw Frohike with a suit on. Nodding at Frohike, Mulder took Scully's hand and squeezed it.
"I'll be back soon," he murmured.
"Don't be too long," Scully whispered, watching Mulder leave. He had to disinfect himself first though, and she watched as he used the bleach to kill any trace of the virus that might have made its way on him, before finally giving a tiny wave and leaving.
Scully watched Mulder walk out the door, exchange a few words with Frohike, then watched as Frohike entered. She smiled at him, to reassure him, to tell him she was fine, at least for now.
Maggie Scully watched Skinner struggle to start a fire in the fireplace in Scully's apartment. They had gone there, hoping that when Mulder and Scully would return they would go to Scully's apartment.
So far, it didn't matter that they weren't there. Maggie believed they were alright, and had just taken vacation time, because of the death of Fox's mother.
She remembered Fox's frantic face that day. Yes, he must've been seeking answers as to who killed his mother, which is why he went to see Walter.
She glanced at the man. Well built, handsome, balding.. but still handsome in her eyes. Without the glasses, she knew he'd look better.
Without thinking, she got off of the couch. She knelt in front of him and took off his glasses.
He smiled at her.
She kneeled forward and gave him a small kiss on the cheek. He grabbed her and pulled her to him almost violently before releasing her.
Finally they went to the couch to relax. Maggie moved forward and traced the outline of his face. They were so relaxed, she was sure one of them would kiss the other, it was only a matter of seconds.
She stared at him, his eyes to his lips. He did the same, and she let her face move closer to his. Closer. Closer.
The sound of the doorknob turning made her back away, to the other side of the couch.
Skinner looked up to see who it was. It was Mulder. With a dazed look in his face.
"Mulder?" Skinner questioned.
Mulder didn't bother to ask why Skinner was even there. He didn't even take a second glance at Maggie Scully. He took a chair, and climbed to a place on top of the television where there was a tiny hole.
He pulled out the camera, carefully, praying that the tape had caught whoever did this to Scully. He took the tape out of the camera, put the camera back in, and bolted out of the room. He heard Skinner and Mrs. Scully calling to him but frankly he didn't care. He had to go back home and see what was on this tape, and punish whoever did this to Scully.
Langly looked at the men surrounding him in the room. They had taken him away for questioning, at once, after finding him in that room. He didn't know what he was supposed to say to them, how he was supposed to answer, without revealing anything.
He was cuffed to a chair, with an authoritative man questioning him.
"Why did you come here son?" the man questioned.
"I-I don't know.. I was curious."
The man scratched at his beard before asking Langly the next question. "Curious about what?"
"Well there's always been these rumors about the Military stealing all of our money? I just wanted to see if it was true," Langly lied.
"Steal your money?" The man's voice rumbled with laughter. Pretty soon everyone in the room was laughing. After calming down the man continued. "I suggest you get your sorry ass out of here, we're letting you go with a warning this time. We see you again even near the building, and we'll have you arrested. We are not, I repeat, not stealing your money. That's the dumbest thing I've ever heard in my life. I think we should put you on 'America's Dumbest Criminals' for that. That's how off target you are. Now get out, and don't come back, don't breathe a word of what you've seen to anyone, we're watching you. Remember that."
Langly nodded, and was secretly happy he was just getting out of the damn place without having to spend a night in jail. The man led him to the door, and Langly ran for all he was worth, and took a taxi to get out of the place.
The Cigarette Smoking Man and Diana Fowley drove quickly on the highway, a chauffeur was hired to drive them. Driving at a normal pace, at about 50 miles an hour, as to not arouse suspicion, they continued in silence.
Diana stared out the window, wondering if Scully was dead yet. Wondering if Mulder would ever find out, wondering if Mulder would want her when Scully's dead.
The Cigarette Smoking man thought about colonization, about how many lives would be taken... he thought about Mrs. Mulder. He had had an affair with the woman once, and he had an attachment with her, and to see her dead... he was only happy it had happened before colonization, because to watch her die after colonization would be too much.
He knew if she was still alive, he would go for her before colonization. It was somewhat like the bond he had with Cassandra, though it wasn't love with either, it was just a responsibility to treat them right after he took what he took from them.
He was the father of Cassandra's child, as he had stolen Samantha away from Teena Mulder.
A sudden screech of the tires forced the both of them to look up. A black sedan, a taurus had cut them off, and had stopped in front of them. They couldn't see inside the car, the windows were tinted. Glancing at Diana, then at the chauffeur, he lit a Morley's.
"What's this," he said aloud to nobody in particular. Diana reached to open the car door, but he shook his head, no. Whoever it was, they would have to come out themselves.
A man came out, wearing a ski mask. They watched as he approached, and took it off. Suddenly they were very aware of who they were dealing with.
It was Mulder.
Scully lay quietly in the bed. She was tired. Dead tired, but the intense pain she was feeling wouldn't let her sleep. Mulder had charisma or something that had helped lull her to sleep when he'd been there, but now it was hopeless. Her head throbbed. Her nose was continuously bleeding. Her stomach ached. She felt nausea coming up and down, up and down, up and down, refusing to leave her alone.
She missed Mulder. Don't get her wrong, Frohike was doing the best he could, giving her motherly care.. but he wasn't Mulder. That made all the difference in the world.
She knew there was a rash spreading across her body. Frohike had brought information about the Ebola virus, and sure enough, it said that she would develop a rash and she had. On her face, her arms, her legs, everywhere. It was itchy, but she didn't dare scratch it, for fear it would get worse.
Her stomach made a rumbling noise, and without thinking she ran to the bathroom. Blood fell from her mouth, a lot of blood. Frohike rushed inside the bathroom to see how she was doing, and forced her to drink some water. In a way the water was comforting, but she was having difficulty breathing now.
She leaned against the wall in front of the toilet and closed her eyes. Mulder had said he wouldn't be long.. at least a day or two had passed since he was here. She knew he was looking for answers, knowing him that was what he would do. She needed him though, and she looked up at Frohike, ready to ask him if he knew where Mulder was.
She swallowed quickly, trying to make sure her voice didn't sound too scratchy, and spoke.
"He, I don't know Agent Scully. He said he would be back in a short time, but he hasn't returned. My guess would be he's searching for whoever did this to you," Frohike replied honestly.
Scully nodded. That was what he was no-doubtedly doing, and she couldn't help but feel mildly angry at him. She didn't think he'd find them, especially since it was Diana who did it... He would never suspect her. She was sure of it.
She felt Frohike touch her shoulder, urging her to get up, and she complyed and let Frohike lead her back to the bed, where she knew he wanted her to rest. She was tired, dead tired, but couldn't rest. Especially knowing Mulder had to be in imminent danger.
She curled herself in a ball on the bed, and looked out the window.
Mulder looked at the car in silence. Diana had done this to his Scully. Diana and the Smoking Bastard. He wasn't going to let them live. Not this time.
He had watched the tape. Watched Diana inject Scully with the virus. Watched the shock on Scully's face, then the knowing look when she saw Diana. Watched the Smoking man smoke while watching this happen. Watched Diana and the man exchange glances before leaving.
The glances that meant it should work and she's going to die. He could still read Diana's face after all these years. Why they wanted to kill Scully though, was a mystery to him.
He had gotten the Gunmen to install one of their cameras in her apartment after Duane Barry. He never had to watch it until now. Only to see what had happened to her, it was only for her own safety. When he was bored, and was curious about what she did at home, he was tempted to watch the tape but he never gave into that temptation.
He knew it was morally wrong to install that video camera in her apartment, but he couldn't stand to watch anything happen to her again. Seeing Diana injecting Scully had shocked him, and he realized why Scully had been hesitant.
He had implied to her that he trusted Diana more than her. He had said that he knew Diana, that Diana can be trusted blindly. He had never told Scully he gave her the same trust, maybe even more. But he never expected it to go this far, that she wouldn't tell him that it was Diana who had injected her with the fatal virus.
He shouldn't have told her he didn't believe her, he should have trusted her, Scully only speaks with evidence, and he mocked the evidence. He stared at the car, that he knew had Diana and CGB inside. It'd be over soon enough for them.
He pulled the door open and looked at them. They had a calm, but frazzled look all in one on their faces.
"Get out of the car," Mulder ordered. They didn't argue and did what he told them to. Diana looked at Mulder and prepared to lie.
"Fox what's going on?" Diana demanded.
Mulder didn't answer her, his attention for the moment was focused on the Smoking Man.
"Why her?" Mulder demanded his voice cracking slightly. The Smoking Man stared at him for a long time before answering.
"Is she dead?" The Smoking Man questioned calmly.
"Why? I'm going to kill you anyways just tell me why!" Mulder screamed. "We were going nowhere! I had no new information on Samantha, our jobs were at a standstill, why? Does it give you some sick pleasure to watch me stand here screaming because the life has drained out of my partner?!?"
"Every act has it's reason," The Smoking Man said smoothly. Mulder cocked his gun at the man.
"It's over this time. This time you've gone too far," Mulder whispered.
"Fox, stop this madness," Diana shouted, moving in front of the Smoking Man so that the gun was pointed to him. "It had to be done, we had no choice."
"No choice? No choice??? Who told you to do this?!" Mulder queried. They didn't reply. He started to laugh as if he'd gone mad.
"Fox, please," Diana murmured.
"You think I'm not going to shoot you Diana? You think because you've moved in front of Cancer Man, that the both of you won't die? That in some sick way I'd forgive you? Forgive you after you've decided you wanted to kill my partner? After you infected her with a virus?" Mulder watched the emotions fly through Diana's face, watched her narrow her eyes as if to say, that bitch told him. "No Diana, she didn't tell me, I found out myself," Mulder said loudly, shaking his head, his voice at the brink of insanity.
"Fox, you know that's not true," Diana said trying to keep her voice soft, trying to convince him she didn't do anything.
"You know what? I've changed my mind, I'm not going to kill you just yet," Mulder answered, his tone continuing to sound maniacally. "I'm going to watch you two suffer. I'm going to make your life a living hell and make you wish I killed you right here and now."
Without further warning, Mulder raised his shotgun. He narrowed his eyes and gazed at Diana. "This is for killing the woman I love," Mulder whispered, emotions evident in his voice. Diana's eyes widened in surprise at the revelation, but before she could say anything, Mulder fired. It hit her, in the desired area, on her shoulder, away from anything vital, so she wouldn't die, but she would suffer, which was what he wanted.
He looked at Cancer Man who was know clear in his view. Diana had toppled to the floor, and was moaning in pain, and Mulder stopped to think for a second.
If he shot Cancer Man, chances were they wouldn't survive. They wouldn't be able to get help. But if he let Cancer Man live, then they would live. Which meant Mulder would make them suffer.
Taking his gun, putting it back in it's holster, he walked back to his car, and got in, eying them suspiciously before driving away.
He knew they both thought Scully was dead now. Which was for the better in his mind. They wouldn't be able to hurt Scully anymore, or to attempt to kill Scully anymore if they thought she was dead.
The only thing was, he wasn't sure if she'd live or not.
Marita Covurrubias looked at the ocean across the Bahamas. They had gone there, sure that colonization wouldn't effect the place, and if it did, it would only be minor.
Alex Krycek was with her, though he was less enthusiastic of coming to the Bahamas. He was convinced that colonization would be strong, wherever it would effect, and had wanted to hide inside a bomb shelter. Marita had refused telling Krycek that she would rather die then spend years of her life living in a bomb shelter, without seeing the sun, being isolated from each other.
Which brought them to where they were. They were sitting inside of their hotel room, staring at the waves splashing against the rocks, stealing the calmness of nature, to calm themselves.
Krycek tapped on her shoulder and she turned around. He murmured softly, in close proximity to her face.
"Everything's going to be fine."
Fine. Right. Fine. Everything was going to be fine.
Maggie Scully was in a frenzy. She didn't know what to do, why Fox had come and taken the camera, and she didn't even know if Dana was with him.
She was dialing both of their numbers frantically trying to get a response. None though. Dana's home phone rang, and she lunged for it.
Skinner was trying to calm her, but it was futile. She was worried about her daughter. He would be doing the same if Scully was his daughter.
"Hello?" Maggie Scully almost shouted on the phone.
"Mom? Mom what are you doing at Dana's? I've been trying to reach you and Dana," Bill said.
"Bill? Bill, I can't find Dana," Maggie reported.
"Don't worry about it mom, she'll probably be home soon enough. Listen, I'm going to have a family reunion, You, Dana, me, Charlie, everyone, we'll go on vacation or something alright?"
"That's fine honey..." Maggie said trailing off. Her son didn't understand that Scully was missing.
Skinner reached out and took her hand, seeing the strained expression on her face, and eventually Maggie hung up. She looked at Skinner and leaned into him, closing her eyes.
"I'm tired Walter," Maggie moaned.
"Go to sleep then."
"You'll wake me if Dana comes home?"
"Of course," Skinner promised.
"Thank you," Mrs. Scully replied.
She let Skinner lead her to Dana's bedroom, let him tuck her in, and watched him leave, before pulling a pillow to her face, and falling asleep.
Langly had headed home, and had opened the door, only to be greeted by Byers and Suzanne.
"Did you get it?" Byers questioned Langly.
"I was caught," Langly admitted.
"Caught?" Suzanne asked.
"They caught me. Then they let me go," Langly replied.
"Why would they do that?"
"I don't know."
"We need to get the cure," Suzanne said frantically. "Scully is dying."
"We need to find another way," Langly said fiercely. "They told me they're watching me."
They all looked at each other, and Langly took a deep breath.
"Where's Frohike?" he asked.
"Gone to take care of Scully."
"We don't know. In fact Frohike should be back by now"
"Let's go get him," Suzanne suggested. They all nodded in agreement and started to head towards the medical facility where Scully was being kept at.
Mulder looked inside the room. Scully was lying on the bed, her face in a grimace, and she hadn't noticed him yet. Frohike was sitting at the edge off the bed and finally looked up.
His face lit up, and Mulder put on a suit hastily. When Frohike had cleaned himself off, Mulder entered without a word. Frohike said something about staying awhile, and Mulder nodded.
Frohike stood outside now, while Mulder moved quickly towards Scully. Armed with the book, Moby Dick, and flowers, he sat down near her.
She finally looked up, and smiled weakly. She struggled to sit up, but Mulder forced her to stay lying down. He put the flowers in a vase, on top of the television, and lay down next to Scully, facing her.
She took the book from him and fingered it.
"What took you so long?" Her eyes searched his, trying to find an answer.
"Why didn't you tell me," Mulder asked softly. He knew she knew what he was talking about, her eyes spoke volumes.
"You wouldn't have believed me," she replied, her voice worse than before. He touched her cheek.
"How could you even think that?" Mulder questioned. "How could you even think that?" he repeated.
She didn't answer. She took Mulder's hand that was touching her cheek and put it on her waist, and curled up into him.
"Mulder I'm tired."
"I know Scully. I know."
"I'm so tired Mulder," she whispered, sudden unexpected tears falling from her eyes. He was startled to say the least, and sat up.
"Hey," he chastised. "I brought you Moby Dick, I'll read it to you, that is if you want me to," Mulder said softly.
A hint of a smile played on Scully's face. She could tell Mulder was studying the rash that had spread across her body.
"You want some good news Scully?" Mulder murmured.
"Yeah, I think I'm in need of it," Scully replied.
"It's Day 12 of the illness. Most people die, at this stage. You haven't. I think you're going to live," Mulder replied, tears stinging his eyes, as he watched her smile.
Two Days later, Scully had made a miraculous recovery. Mulder had explained to her about shooting Diana, keeping it vague, not telling her exactly what he had said to Diana.
They left the room, and had taken residence in a single hotel room. Frohike, Byers, Suzanne, and Langly, were all in the same hotel, staying in their rooms.
Although there was still a chance of infection, of the disease spreading, it was very little, and he wasn't going to confine Scully in that room any longer.
He had gotten a suite, two beds, a small kitchenette, a couch, a table, almost like living together. Like a small family. All for him and Scully.
She was still having some reactions when she ate, a few nosebleeds here and there, vomiting a few times a day, but other then that she was fine.
The rash had disappeared, her face was pale, but a miracle had saved her. He was thankful.
She was lounging in the living room, right now, reading the book he had brought for her, Moby Dick.
He had read a few chapters to her during her illness, but he didn't think she could really pay attention to what he was saying.
"Hey Scully," Mulder called.
"Yeah?" Scully asked, her sore throat making her sound like a three-year-old, but it was better then before.
That was all that matters.
"Dinner with the Gunmen and Suzanne, in half an hour," Mulder declared.
"That's fine," Scully replied. Mulder walked into the room she was in, the main room, the living room, and contented himself in watching her read the book, with an ice cream shake in her hand, sipping from it with a pink straw.
It was so normal... The type of life he wished he had with Scully.
She looked up at him and met his gaze. She held it for a few seconds before looking at her book again, but she wasn't reading, she was closing the book.
"Come here," Scully commanded. Mulder listened, and sat down on the floor in front of her on the couch. She ruffled his hair lovingly, planted a kiss on his head, and let her hands rest on his shoulders. "Thank you Mulder. I know you've been through so much these past few days, your mother's death... and you were there the whole time taking care of me. It means a lot to me Mulder."
Mulder didn't feel like turning around, though he wanted to see her eyes, so he finally did.
"I... I..." Mulder couldn't say what he had to. He was trying to tell her he loved her, but it wouldn't come out. "They think you're dead," Mulder said slowly. "I told them you were already dead."
"Maybe that's a good thing Mulder." He looked at her and knew what was coming.
It was goodbye.
"I think you know I'm going to have to leave you."
Mulder didn't reply. He knew she had to leave, if he wanted her to be alright, but the loneliness would kill him. Why couldn't they live normally.
He knew they couldn't, at least not for now. Someday though. Someday he'd be living with Scully in a little cottage in the middle of nowhere, and they'd be happy.
For the sake of her being okay, for nobody ever hurting her, he had to let her go. It was a sacrifice he had to make, though he didn't exactly want to.
"Scully?" Mulder questioned, and suddenly he felt the words at the tip of his tongue, ready to come out any second. They did before she could reply.
"I love you Scully," Mulder said quickly. He wasn't sure if he'd even said it. The look on her face told him he had though, she was not exactly smiling, but had a trace of a smile on her face.
"You're going to visit me Mulder. A lot. I'm going to Toronto, in Canada, and you're going to come visit me every chance you get."
"You're going to be seeing me every night then Scully," Mulder said leering at her.
"I'd kiss you but I'm afraid I might still have a trace of the virus in me," Scully blurted out in response.
"So when are you going?" Mulder questioned.
"I think it'd be best if I left right away Mulder."
Mulder called the Gunmen, asking them to prepare an alias for Scully, a new identity. He called a taxi to take her to the airport and they walked outside together.
"I-I'm going to miss you Mulder," Scully said softly. Mulder embraced her roughly. He watched the Gunmen come out then pulled away Embarrassedly.
"Here you go Agent Scully, your new name, Janet Smith, your new bank account card, where we've put some of our own money and Mulder's money, so you can afford to live for now. Don't worry about paying us back, since the city will assume you're dead, they'll give the money to Mulder." Langly said.
The taxi approached, and Mulder felt a lump form in his throat. He grasped Scully's hand, and pulled her to him, kissing her forehead, while she looked shyly up at him. She started to head towards the taxi before looking at the Gunmen and Suzanne.
"Thank you for helping me," she remarked. They said their goodbyes, and Scully was at the taxi door when she turned to Mulder. She winked at him and mouthed the words, I love you, making sure he 7understood, and he did, because a grin broke out on his face.
She went into the taxi and headed towards her new life, not really wanting too.
They'd been calm saying their goodbyes, but Scully knew it was only a matter of time before she'd start to miss him like hell, and head into the abyss.
On her way to her new life, sane, at least for now.
The Smoking Man didn't take Diana to the hospital. They arrived in Mexico, and he had a personal friend of his who was a doctor, take care of her and tend to her wounds.
In only seven days, colonization would begin. It would be the end of thousands of lives, the beginning of a new life for everyone that survived.
He just had to play the waiting game.
Until it came.
End Notes: There you have it. Done. Finished. Took me from