Blood on the snow (By Waddles52 and Truthwebothknow)

Blood on the snow

Title:  Blood On The Snow
                                    Author:  Waddles52 and Truthwebothknow1
                                    Summary:  Mulder and Scully must spend Christmas at 
                                    the office when all vacations are cancelled.
                                    Rating:  PG13
                                    Category:  MT, MSR
                                    Disclaimer:  These characters belong to Chris Carter 
                                    and 1013 productions.
                                    Archives:  Written for the MR December Fic Challenge.
                                    Please ask afterward.
                                    Scully watched, exhausted, as they took her partner 
                                    away.  Swirling dust made a whirlpool in the half-
                                    light as he was lifted free.  Later, she would recall 
                                    the rescue, the climb over debris and the pain she 
                                    felt herself, both physically and emotionally.  The 
                                    feel of a hand at her back and an arm around her 
                                    shoulders guided her along the ground into the frigid 
                                    December night, feet crunching on snow now instead of 
                                    glass and splintered wood.  Not Mulder's hand, her 
                                    brain screamed.  Ahead of her she saw his arm slide 
                                    limply from under the blanket they'd placed over him, 
                                    watching as if outside her own body as blood dripped 
                                    from the bandages, dotting the snow, leaving a trail 
                                    to the waiting ambulance.
                                    Hoover Building 9AM, several days earlier.
                                    The meeting was dismissed and the F.B.I. agents made 
                                    their way out of the conference room noiselessly.  AD 
                                    Skinner felt like he was probably the most hated 
                                    person in the building at that particular moment.  He 
                                    was Ebenezer Scrooge and The Grinch Who Stole 
                                    Christmas all rolled into one miserable excuse for a 
                                    human being.  Although he was only following orders, 
                                    he had just announced to the agents under his 
                                    supervision that all Christmas leave was cancelled, 
                                    including Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.
                                    In the hallway the saddened agents were still in 
                                    shock.  Not a word was said as they made their way 
                                    back to their offices.
                                    Although Special Agent Fox Mulder really couldn't 
                                    care less whether he had to work during the holidays, 
                                    he was extremely upset for his partner.  Christmas 
                                    was a big deal to Special Agent Dana Scully and her 
                                    family, and she had already made plans to spend it 
                                    with her mother, brothers and all of the sister-in-
                                    laws and nieces and nephews.  Now, it looked like 
                                    she'd be lucky to find the time to call them on 
                                    Christmas Day.
                                    Mulder wisely refrained from saying anything to her.  
                                    In this situation it would be best to let her speak 
                                    first.  They rode the elevator to their basement 
                                    office in silence.  Mulder unlocked the door and 
                                    Scully plopped into her chair and sighed loudly.  
                                    "I guess I should cancel my flight," she stated, 
                                    reaching for her organizer to look up the number.  
                                    "Maybe I can still get a partial refund."
                                    "I'm sorry, Scully.  I know how much you look forward 
                                    to Christmas with your family."
                                    "Thanks, Mulder.  It's too bad that terrorists have 
                                    no respect for our holidays."  She found the number 
                                    of the airline and punched in the numbers angrily.
                                    Mulder took his seat behind his desk and tried to 
                                    appear busy while she cancelled her plans.  He 
                                    wondered what he could do to take some of the sting 
                                    out of the situation; however, he was nervous about 
                                    broaching the subject.  He goes he thought, the worst 
                                    she can do is say no.
                                    "Scully, I know this is a pretty poor substitute, but 
                                    I'd like to take you out for a nice meal on Christmas 
                                    "Oh, Mulder.  I think it's a wonderful idea.  What 
                                    did you have in mind?"
                                    "Well, I happen to know that several of the nicer 
                                    hotels have an all-day Christmas buffet with turkey, 
                                    ham and all the trimmings.  If you like, I can make 
                                    reservations for that evening after we get off from 
                                    "Yes, please do.  I'd love to spend Christmas evening 
                                    with you," she managed to smile.
                                    "Great!  I'll take care of that now."  
                                    Mulder couldn't believe his incredible luck as he 
                                    searched for the number of the fanciest hotel in the 
                                    city.  He usually sat in front of the TV with a 
                                    Hungry Man turkey dinner and a beer, but this year 
                                    would be special.  He would be spending it with his 
                                    best friend who also happened to be the love of his 
                                    life.  Maybe he would even get up the nerve to tell 
                                    her how he really felt.
                                    The next few days seemed to drag by.  The mood in the 
                                    Hoover Building was definitely not filled with 
                                    Christmas cheer.  Even though the agents brought in 
                                    treats, and drank hot chocolate and eggnog, the 
                                    overall feeling was one of gloom.  Even the promise 
                                    of snow on Christmas Eve didn't cause the normal 
                                    Although Mulder griped and complained around the 
                                    other agents, he was actually walking on air.  He had 
                                    found the perfect present for Scully a few months 
                                    back.  It was a book of poetry about the sea and he 
                                    planned to give it to her at dinner on Christmas Day.
                                    At the same time he found the book of poetry in a 
                                    small antique shop, he also spotted a small painting 
                                    of a seascape.  He couldn't decide whether to give it 
                                    to her for Christmas or hold it until her birthday.  
                                    Well, he had two days left to decide.
                                    At last, Christmas Day arrived and the agents were 
                                    still grumbling.  Despite being on alert and chasing 
                                    down hundreds of tips and false leads, not one 
                                    terrorist plan had been stopped, or even found for 
                                    that matter.  Christmas was ruined for nothing.
                                    Skinner had arranged for his division to be fed that 
                                    day.  Even though it wasn't the traditional Christmas 
                                    meal, there were trays heaped with cold cuts and 
                                    cheese.  Several types of salads were provided along 
                                    with Christmas cookies and pumpkin and pecan pie.  
                                    The same agents who had griped and complained about 
                                    their supervisor all week didn't seem to have a 
                                    problem chowing down on the meal he provided.  As a 
                                    special treat, he had even managed to round up 
                                    several large containers of eggnog ice cream, hand 
                                    made at an upscale dairy bar in the suburbs.
                                    Although they were tempted, Mulder and Scully just 
                                    nibbled on a few of the goodies.  They were both 
                                    looking forward to the sumptuous buffet with all the 
                                    trimmings.  Their reservations were for 7PM and they 
                                    intended to leave plenty of room for the more 
                                    traditional Christmas fare.
                                    Shortly after 4PM, Mulder had just finished another 
                                    game of solitaire on his computer.  Scully had been 
                                    cleaning out some of the file cabinets and shredding 
                                    some of the papers they no longer needed.  When the 
                                    machine stopped, Mulder heard footsteps on the 
                                    stairs.  That was rather unusual, as they were rarely 
                                    used.  He listened carefully and heard the sound of 
                                    someone running up the stairs.  Someone was 
                                    definitely out there.
                                    "Scully, stay here.  I'm going to check that out."  
                                    Mulder got up from his desk and unsnapped his holster 
                                    to provide easy access to his gun.
                                    "Mulder," Scully chuckled.  "It's probably some of 
                                    the guys from the bullpen horsing around.  They're 
                                    just as bored as we are."
                                    "Maybe, but I'm going to check it out anyway."
                                    "Suit yourself."  She shrugged and reached for 
                                    another stack of papers to run through the shredder.
                                    The machine whirred to life once again.  It was so 
                                    loud that she didn't hear the sound of Mulder's 
                                    hurried footsteps as he burst through the door.  He 
                                    pushed her under the desk and she thought she heard 
                                    him shout, "Bomb!" before the building came crashing 
                                    down on top of them.
                                    The explosion was deafening and Scully was amazed 
                                    that she was still alive by the time all of the 
                                    debris stopped falling.  She expected to find her 
                                    partner squeezed in beside her under the desk, but 
                                    she soon realized that he hadn't made it to the 
                                    safety it had afforded her.
                                    She experienced a moment of panic as her brain 
                                    processed everything.  Mulder!  She had to find him.  
                                    Dazed and shocked, she began to scan what was left of 
                                    their office.
                                    As the dust began to clear she found him lying a foot 
                                    away from her, almost completely buried by debris.  
                                    Only his left leg was visible.  The smell of blood 
                                    permeated the dust still swirling through the dim 
                                    light.  Since she wasn't hurt badly herself, that 
                                    only meant one thing.  Scully crawled out from under 
                                    the desk wincing as the cuts and bruises on her hands 
                                    and knees began to make their presence known.  Truth 
                                    be told, she hurt all over, but there wasn't time to 
                                    dwell on her minor injuries.  She needed to get to 
                                    her partner and begin removing the debris that 
                                    covered him. Choking back dust and tears she started 
                                    pulling off rubble, one piece at a time.
                                    After what seemed like hours, but was probably only a 
                                    few minutes, she had cleared enough of the wreckage 
                                    that was once their office away from his head and 
                                    upper body that she was able to shakily reach out her 
                                    hand to his neck to feel for a pulse.  The female 
                                    agent almost collapsed with relief when she felt it, 
                                    a little fast but strong.
                                    There were small cuts and bruises all over his face 
                                    and the back of his head.  He was lying face down so 
                                    it was difficult to see all of his injuries at first.
                                    She continued to remove the debris piece by piece 
                                    until she had all of the debris off of him.
                                    Mulder was lying with his right arm tucked underneath 
                                    him, his white dress shirt red in places where the 
                                    debris had dug into him and broken the skin on his 
                                    back.  Blood running down his face mixed in with the 
                                    dust and debris from the ceiling.  Scully continued 
                                    to evaluate the injuries she could see, taking note 
                                    of his right ankle, which appeared to be dislocated.  
                                    Her eyes traveled up his body once again and she was 
                                    horrified to discover a growing pool of blood coming 
                                    from what appeared to be his right arm.  She was 
                                    preparing to roll him over when he coughed, then 
                                    moaned loudly.
                                    "Mulder, don't try to move.  You've been injured."
                                    "Mmm, yeah.  You okay?"  He coughed again, attempting 
                                    to remove more of the dust from his lungs.  "Damn, 
                                    that hurts."
                                    "Can you tell me where you hurt?"
                                    "My head, my entire right side.  Something big hit 
                                    "I pulled your office chair and your computer monitor 
                                    off of you."
                                    "That would explain it.  You didn't answer me.  You 
                                    okay?" he demanded, breathing heavily.  
                                    "Just some bumps and bruises.  Thank you for shoving 
                                    me under the desk."
                                    "Wish I'd had time to join you."
                                    "I need to roll you over.  You're bleeding and I need 
                                    to see where it's coming from."
                                    "My right arm really hurts.  Must've broke it when I 
                                    "We'll see when I get you turned over.  Let me do all 
                                    of the work.  Don't try to help.  Do you understand?"
                                    "On three, okay?  One, two, three."  She log rolled 
                                    him onto his back, trying to keep his head and neck 
                                    steady, aware that she was still shaking herself, all 
                                    the time knowing he must be in terrible pain if his 
                                    cries of agony were anything to go by.
                                    Blood was pouring from a large gash on the right side 
                                    of his forehead.  Scully's eyes moved down and took 
                                    in his blood soaked shirt.  Right below the rolled up 
                                    sleeve on his right arm was a sight that made her 
                                    gasp.  Mulder's arm was severely broken, one of the 
                                    bones protruding from his skin in a compound 
                                    "Oh, shit," he moaned when he saw it, his face 
                                    turning a sickly shade of pale.
                                    "Hang in there, partner.  I'm going to look around 
                                    for something to use as a splint and get you patched 
                                    up.  Just lie very still"
                                    Scully turned 360 degrees in her search for material 
                                    suitable for making a splint.  She finally spied a 
                                    couple of old magazines under a pile of near-by 
                                    debris.  She quickly pulled them out and folded them 
                                    in half so that the back page advertisement was 
                                    showing.  Mulder might get a little upset at the 
                                    sacrifice of two of his 'Celebrity Skin' monthlies 
                                    and she certainly didn't want to stare at a scantily 
                                    clad beauty until they were rescued.
                                    She took off her jacket and began unbuttoning her 
                                    blouse.  Mulder watched her wide-eyed, puzzled as to 
                                    why she was removing her clothing.  With her blouse 
                                    off, she put her jacket back on, buttoning it 
                                    quickly.  She removed a clean handkerchief from her 
                                    right pocket and pressed it against the gash on his 
                                    The doctor, turned F.B.I. agent began tearing her 
                                    blouse into strips.  "Mulder, I'm going to make an 
                                    effort to pull that bone back into place, then splint 
                                    it.  I don't think I have to tell you that it will 
                                    hurt like the devil."
                                    "Go ahead," he nodded then closed his eyes, taking a 
                                    shaky breath.  He knew it was going to hurt like a 
                                    son-of-a-bitch and he just hoped that he wouldn't 
                                    embarrass himself by screaming too loudly.
                                    Taking a deep breath, she pulled on his arm and 
                                    maneuvered the bone back into place.  Mulder cried 
                                    out in anguish, then thankfully lost consciousness.  
                                    His partner worked quickly to get the arm splinted 
                                    before he came to.
                                    With that task accomplished, she pulled up his shirt 
                                    to examine his chest and abdomen, noting the livid 
                                    bruise across his entire right side.  At least one 
                                    rib was fractured, maybe more.
                                    While he was still out, she turned her attention to 
                                    his right ankle.  It slipped back into place easily 
                                    due to his relaxed state.  Using one of the remaining 
                                    strips of cloth from her blouse, the doctor tied it 
                                    around her partner's head to hold the handkerchief in 
                                    When she finished, she allowed herself a moment to 
                                    rest and look around their totaled office.  Outside, 
                                    sirens were screaming.  She prayed that their rescue 
                                    would be a swift one.  Water poured down the side of 
                                    the wall, mingling with the dust, and she found 
                                    herself wondering how safe the rest of the building 
                                    was.  Would the rescue workers be able to reach them?
                                    Mulder coughed again and groaned loudly from the pain 
                                    it caused.  He opened his eyes, immediately searching 
                                    for Scully.  She took hold of his hand and stroked 
                                    the part of his head that seemed to be uninjured.
                                    "I'm here, Mulder.  You've been unconscious for a few 
                                    minutes.  I splinted your arm and put your ankle back 
                                    into place.  You have at least one broken rib so 
                                    don't try to move.  Just stay still and calm.  You're 
                                    going to be okay.  I can hear the rescue workers 
                                    trying to make their way through" Her fingers stroked 
                                    through his hair, stiff and almost white from the 
                                    He nodded that he understood, the pain keeping him 
                                    from speaking for the time being.  He heard the 
                                    sirens outside and hoped that they would soon be 
                                    getting out.
                                    Clearing his throat, he finally managed to make his 
                                    voice work.  "What time is it?"
                                    "A few minutes after five."
                                    "If they hurry we may still make dinner."
                                    Scully looked at her partner as if he'd just grown 
                                    another head.  "Mulder, the only place you're going 
                                    is to the ER.  That arm will require surgery and 
                                    you're acting as if it's nothing more than a paper 
                                    "Wanted tonight to be special."  Tears of pain and 
                                    disappointment began to form in the corner of his 
                                    eyes.  Scully felt like crying herself at the sight 
                                    of him.  Another trip to the ER at the worst time of 
                                    the year, with Mulder in agony, life sucked 
                                    "I know you did, partner."  She gently wiped his 
                                    tears away.  "How about this?  I'll fix us a 
                                    Christmas dinner with all of the trimmings as soon as 
                                    you've recovered enough to enjoy it.  We can have our 
                                    own private Christmas celebration."
                                    "Sounds nice.  Thank you."  He listened to the sirens 
                                    and the sounds coming from outside the building.  
                                    "Rescue team should be here soon."
                                    "Mulder, it might take them a while to get to us."
                                    "Don't think it was much of a bomb.  The stairs and 
                                    the hallway probably took most of the blast."
                                    "It did quite a number on this office too.  The 
                                    doorway is blocked.  Did you see who was on the 
                                    stairs?"  Scully checked the splint on his arm, 
                                    concerned that the wound was still bleeding heavily.
                                    "Looked like Joe Melton."
                                    "From accounting?" she asked, her surprise quite 
                                    "Yeah, don't think he made it though.  He ran back to 
                                    check the timer, then tripped on the stairs.  I 
                                    didn't stick around to offer my help."
                                    "Why would he want to bomb the Hoover Building?"
                                    "No idea."  Mulder coughed again, grimacing with the 
                                    pain.  His grip tightened on Scully's hand.
                                    They were both startled by the sound of breaking 
                                    glass.  "Agent Mulder!  Agent Scully!  Can you hear 
                                    me?"  Skinner's concerned voice boomed through the 
                                    small window in their office.
                                    "Yes, we're here!" Scully shouted.  "Please hurry!  
                                    Agent Mulder is badly injured and needs medical 
                                    attention now!"
                                    "Agent Scully, listen to me.  The stairway is blocked 
                                    and we can't use the elevator until it's been checked 
                                    out.  We'll have to get you out through this window.  
                                    It might take a while to get the debris out of the 
                                    way.  Can Agent Mulder walk?"
                                    "No, he can't.  He's losing a lot of blood from a 
                                    compound fracture.  Please hurry!"
                                    Both agents waited in silence for a few minutes, 
                                    wondering when the rescue effort would begin.
                                    Skinner's voice broke the quiet.  "The rescue team is 
                                    going to send in a paramedic.  Hang on, okay?  He'll 
                                    have to climb over a lot of debris to get to you."
                                    Scully sighed and turned her attention back to her 
                                    partner.  "Mulder, how're you doing?"
                                    "I'm okay."  Scully raised an eyebrow.  
                                    "The truth, Mulder."
                                    "I'm freezing my ass off since they broke the window.  
                                    I've got the mother of all headaches.  My arm hurts 
                                    like a son-of-a-bitch and I can't take a deep breath 
                                    without expecting a rib to puncture a lung.  Other 
                                    than that, I'm fine."
                                    Scully chuckled at his list of complaints.  "I'm glad 
                                    you're not in bad shape then."
                                    "Agent Scully!" a voice called.
                                    "Over here!"
                                    "I just needed to get a fix on your location.  I'm on 
                                    my way with blankets and medical supplies," the 
                                    paramedic called.
                                    For the next few minutes he moved objects aside and 
                                    scrambled over others.  Mulder held onto Scully's 
                                    hand tightly, the pain from his injuries reaching an 
                                    excruciating level.
                                    Suddenly, two blankets landed beside Scully along 
                                    with a backpack.  She looked up and a uniformed man 
                                    climbed down from a pile of debris.  "Agent Scully?  
                                    I'm John Winston.  Agent Mulder?  How are you doing?"
                                    "I'm okay," he grunted through the pain.
                                    "Well, since I'm here anyway, why don't you let me 
                                    take a look at you?"
                                    "Whatever.  Just get us out of here.  We've got 
                                    somewhere to go and we're running out of time."
                                    The paramedic looked to Scully for some 
                                    "Mulder, settle down.  We're not going anywhere until 
                                    you get checked out, so why don't you let Mr. Winston 
                                    do that?"
                                    All at once Mulder's defense against the pain 
                                    shattered.  "Okay, my arm does hurt a little."
                                    "I'll bet it does.  Let's take this from head to toe.  
                                    Agent Scully, AD Skinner informed me of your medical 
                                    background.  Why don't you fill me in?"
                                    Scully gave him the rundown on Mulder's injuries as 
                                    the paramedic took his pulse and blood pressure.  
                                    "Well Agent Mulder, it looks like your partner did a 
                                    kick-ass job of first-aid with little to work with."
                                    He opened his backpack and began pulling out 
                                    bandages, IV solution, splints and other medical 
                                    supplies that might be of use.
                                    "Did you bring any pain medications?"  Scully was 
                                    very concerned with the amount of pain her partner 
                                    was dealing with.  When he admitted his arm hurt it 
                                    signaled that he had just about reached his limit.
                                    "Yes, I did and the hospital gave special permission 
                                    for you to okay their use.  That's slightly illegal, 
                                    but due to the fact that it might take a while to get 
                                    you two out of here, we're going to take a chance.  
                                    Now, he has a head wound.  Has he shown any signs of 
                                    concussion or skull fracture?"
                                    "No.  Although he was initially stunned, he never 
                                    fully lost consciousness and he's been oriented and 
                                    responsive since."
                                    "All right, then.  It's your call.  I have morphine, 
                                    Demerol or Toradol."
                                    "Start an IV, wide-open and we'll go with morphine."
                                    "No drugs, Scully."  Mulder had begun to shiver in 
                                    earnest from shock and the cold seeping in through 
                                    the broken window.  Snow was blowing in onto the 
                                    rescue workers who were trying to clear a path.
                                    "Mulder, I know you're hurting and I won't allow you 
                                    to suffer unnecessarily."
                                    "Agent Mulder, I'm going to clean your wounds and put 
                                    on new bandages.  There's no way around it.  It's 
                                    going to hurt like hell."
                                    Mulder thought it over for a few seconds.  As much as 
                                    he hated drugs, he realized that this would be one 
                                    time to make an exception.  "Okay, just don't knock 
                                    me out."
                                    "You'll be pretty woozy, but you should be able to 
                                    talk to us.  Hang on, now.  I'm going to start that 
                                    A loud crash sounded across the room.  "Scully, the 
                                    files, are they okay?"  Mulder's panicked voice ate 
                                    right to the core of her.
                                    Scully stood up on her tiptoes to get a look at that 
                                    area of their office.  One of the cabinets is on its 
                                    side, but the others are upright.  I think 
                                    everything's intact."
                                    "Can't handle losing them again," he shivered, his 
                                    teeth chattering with shock.
                                    His partner grabbed one of the blankets and spread it 
                                    over him.  "Hang in there, Mulder.  He's got the IV 
                                    running and he's preparing the morphine."
                                    "Scully, you need to check the files.  Have to be 
                                    sure everything's okay.  Can't let them get wet.  
                                    Make sure they don't get thrown away.  Move them to a 
                                    safe area."  His voice disintegrated into a cough.
                                    "Mulder, take it easy.  Those files are important to 
                                    me too.  I'll make sure they're stored in a safe 
                                    place.  Just rest and let us help you."
                                    They were startled by the sound of another loud crash 
                                    followed by the tinkle of breaking glass.
                                    Mulder jumped and tried to sit up.  "Gotta save the 
                                    files!  Ahh . . .shit!"  He cried out in pain as 
                                    Scully helped him ease back down, doing her best to 
                                    reassure him.
                                    "Mulder, those sounds you hear are the rescue team.  
                                    They're trying to clear a path through the debris to 
                                    get us out.  The files are safe."
                                    Scully lovingly caressed her partner's face and 
                                    thought back to a time several years back.  He had 
                                    been devastated when a fire destroyed their office.  
                                    Working an untold number of hours, he was eventually 
                                    able to restore some of the files which were now 
                                    stored in fireproof cabinets.  She would do anything 
                                    in her power to insure that his life's work remained 
                                    safe.  She was afraid that Mulder couldn't survive 
                                    that much emotional trauma again.
                                    "Morphine's on board," Winston announced.
                                    "Relax Mulder, everything's under control.  I want 
                                    you to think of that Christmas dinner I'm going to 
                                    prepare.  I have a present to give you and I think 
                                    you'll really enjoy it."
                                    "I've got something for you too, something very 
                                    "Oh, really?  Do I get any hints?" Scully teased.
                                    "No, no hints, but I may save one of your gifts for 
                                    Valentine's Day instead."  He grinned goofily as the 
                                    morphine began to take hold.
                                    "That sounds intriguing."
                                    "I meant for it to."
                                    John Winston began arranging the items he would need.  
                                    He really didn't want to listen in on what was 
                                    obviously a very private conversation.  "Agent 
                                    Mulder, is the morphine helping?"
                                    "Not much.  My arm still hurts like a mother."
                                    "I'm sorry.  Agent Scully, do you want me to give him 
                                    a little more?"
                                    "Yes, I think that might be wise."
                                    "Okay, here goes."  He injected it into the IV port 
                                    then carefully began removing the bandages from 
                                    Mulder's head.  As he began to clean the wound, 
                                    Mulder roughly grabbed for Scully's hand, worrying 
                                    her fingers as he held on tight.
                                    "I know this is really uncomfortable, but if you can 
                                    just hang on I should be finished pretty soon."
                                    "I'm trying, but it really hurts."  He was gasping 
                                    for breath.  Scully squeezed his fingers, the contact 
                                    with her the only thing holding him together.
                                    "The morphine isn't helping?"
                                    "Don't know.  Just hurry," he groaned.  Scully 
                                    thought her hand would break from the pressure he was 
                                    When he was finished, he took Mulder's blood pressure 
                                    again and was surprised at the reading.  "It's a 
                                    little lower than before," he whispered to Scully.  
                                    We need to do something to slow down that bleeding 
                                    from his arm."
                                    "I agree.  It's going to be very painful for him 
                                    though.  Why don't you start another IV, wide open?"
                                    The paramedic started the additional IV in Mulder's 
                                    left arm, barely getting a response as the needle 
                                    went in. Winston looked at Mulder who appeared to be 
                                    sleeping.  "Agent Mulder, can you hear me?"
                                    "Mmm," was the only answer he received.
                                    "Looks like that's the best we're going to get as far 
                                    as pain relief."
                                    "He has a very high tolerance for pain meds." Scully 
                                    explained.  "He's not out of it as much as you 
                                    "Then let's take advantage of what we have.  I'm 
                                    going to remove your excellent splint and clean the 
                                    wound.  I'll bandage it with a pressure dressing and 
                                    put on another splint.  I don't think that morphine 
                                    will hold him so you need to keep him as calm as 
                                    possible.  Okay?"
                                    "Yes, we're old hands at this.  Ready when you are."  
                                    Scully took a deep breath to steady herself.  
                                    Mulder's pain was her pain.  Even though she wouldn't 
                                    feel it physically, his suffering would shake her to 
                                    her very core.  The realization that she and Mulder 
                                    were one hit her full force.  Her eyes blurred for a 
                                    second at that revelation.
                                    There had been something between them from the very 
                                    moment they met, and it had grown stronger as the 
                                    years passed.  Today, in the rubble of their life's 
                                    work, she realized that she was in love with Mulder.  
                                    "What a time for an epiphany," she thought sadly.  
                                    Staring into each other's eyes over Christmas dinner 
                                    would have been so much nicer, but as she had found 
                                    on their very first case together, they couldn't 
                                    count on anything or anyone but each other.
                                    Mulder stirred uncomfortably as the paramedic began 
                                    to untie the strips of Scully's blouse.  By the time 
                                    the wound was exposed the agent was writhing in pain.  
                                    Scully held his hand and softly stroked his jaw with 
                                    the other hand over and over, speaking soothing words 
                                    of comfort.
                                    By the time the wound had been cleaned, bandaged and 
                                    splinted again, Mulder was practically out of his 
                                    mind with excruciating pain.
                                    "Let's take a break before we start to work on his 
                                    ankle," Scully suggested.
                                    "Good idea.  I think we all need to rest for a few 
                                    minutes," Winston agreed.  Despite the cold, snowy 
                                    air blowing in through the broken window, all three 
                                    of them were perspiring heavily.
                                    "You finished?" Mulder gasped
                                    "Almost," the man answered.  He wiped his brow on his 
                                    sleeve and began to arrange the medical supplies in 
                                    the order they would be needed.  "How're you holding 
                                    Mulder rolled his eyes in response.
                                    "Agent Mulder, you're doing just fine.  Splinting 
                                    that ankle should be a piece of cake.  Your partner 
                                    already did all the hard work."
                                    "She's good."  He turned his tortured eyes to Scully.  
                                    Through the pain, his love and admiration shone 
                                    through.  "Couldn't make it without her."
                                    "Then we have something in common."  Scully's eyes 
                                    showed the same love and admiration.  "Because I 
                                    couldn't make it without you either."  His fingers 
                                    tightened their grip.
                                    Though neither agent spoke the word 'love', each knew 
                                    what the other was thinking.  Tears welled up in both 
                                    their eyes.  Mulder's left hand squeezed Scully's, 
                                    hand gently.  She returned the gesture.  Each 
                                    understood it was the equivalent of a first kiss.
                                    Mulder's breathing and heart rate slowed considerably 
                                    as Scully continued to comfort him.  The rescue team 
                                    seemed to be making progress, inching ever closer.
                                    Feeling much more secure, knowing that Scully 
                                    returned his love, and the fact that the rescue crew 
                                    was getting closer, he allowed himself to relax.  He 
                                    was dozing within seconds.
                                    The paramedic hadn't missed any of their unspoken 
                                    communication.  "Agent Scully, I'm glad you're here 
                                    for him.  You really helped him handle the pain."
                                    "Mulder has a high pain threshold.  I think he would 
                                    have done just as well if I wasn't here."
                                    "Having you with him didn't hurt though.  Damn it!"  
                                    He checked the bandage on Mulder's arm and found that 
                                    the blood had already soaked through despite the 
                                    pressure wrap.  "The bone must have nicked a blood 
                                    Scully nodded in agreement, worry creasing her brow.
                                    He stood up and peered over a mound of debris.  "How 
                                    much longer until we can get him out of here?
                                    "Don't know, Win.  We're having to hand a lot of this 
                                    junk out through the window to make a path"
                                    "Be safe, but hurry it up.  This guy needs to get to 
                                    the hospital like yesterday."
                                    "Okay, I think there's enough room now to bring 
                                    someone else down to help.  We'll get there as fast 
                                    as we can.  Hey, Win, the captain wants to know if 
                                    you need any more supplies."
                                    "Nah, I think we're okay for the time being but we'll 
                                    need a backboard and neck brace when we're ready to 
                                    move him."
                                    "All right.  I'll pass that along."
                                    Win turned back to the two F.B.I. agents.  "I'm ready 
                                    to splint that ankle now.  Just keep on with what 
                                    you've been doing, Agent Scully.  You seem to be good 
                                    medicine for him,"
                                    Mulder's ankle was splinted in record time with only 
                                    a few moans and groans.  Scully decided to take his 
                                    pulse just to satisfy her curiosity and became quite 
                                    concerned when she found it weaker.  "Can't you get 
                                    them to hurry it up?"
                                    "They've put another man on the detail, but remember, 
                                    they have to look out for their own safety and ours," 
                                    the paramedic explained patiently.  "Now, how about 
                                    helping me clean up all of those little scrapes and 
                                    "Yes, of course."
                                    After cutting his shirt off, they cleaned and 
                                    disinfected every visible break in Mulder's skin, 
                                    periodically stopping to take his pulse and blood 
                                    pressure.  Neither was improving.  Scully gently 
                                    spread the blanket back over him and covered him with 
                                    "Mmm, Scully?"
                                    "Right here partner."
                                    "Cold," he shivered.
                                    "It's snowing like crazy and very cold outside," 
                                    Scully explained.
                                    "You always wanted a window that you could open."  
                                    Mulder's teeth chattered as he spoke."
                                    "Well, they say to be careful what you wish for.  I 
                                    guess I learned my lesson.  Would you like another 
                                    "No, you need it."
                                    "I'm really not that cold."  Scully spread the other 
                                    blanket over him.  "Better?"
                                    "Yeah, thanks.  What time is it?"
                                    "Almost 7:30."
                                    "Guess we missed our dinner.  Ahhh, my arm hurts."
                                    "I know it must really be painful, and there will be 
                                    other dinners you know."  Scully pasted a smile on 
                                    her face, determined not to let him see her worry.  
                                    It was taking too damned long to get them out and his 
                                    condition was dangerous to say the least.
                                    There was some movement behind the paramedic and a 
                                    new face appeared.  "Hey, Win.  You ready to get out 
                                    of here?
                                    Scully turned to her partner, ready to share the good 
                                    news with him.  "Mulder, did you hear?  We're getting 
                                    out of here!"
                                    His eyes were closed and he gave no indication of 
                                    hearing here.  "Mulder?"
                                    Her hand went to his throat and found his pulse 
                                    barely there.  "Win!  I need some help here!"
                                    "One one thousand, two one thousand," chanted Scully, 
                                    tears running down her cheeks as she pushed hard on 
                                    Mulder's lifeless chest.
                                    The second she'd turned her head to call for help 
                                    she'd lost his heartbeat and immediately started CPR, 
                                    fighting her growing panic while Win breathed his own 
                                    strong breath into Mulder.
                                    One giant fit of coughing later confirmed that 
                                    miraculously, they had him back.  Scully sent up a 
                                    silent prayer for her Christmas miracle.  Tears 
                                    rolled down her dirt-smudged face as she worked on 
                                    autopilot beside Win while they stabilized him.
                                    "It's okay, Mulder.  It's okay now," she whispered, 
                                    holding on tight to his wrist, feeling the thrill of 
                                    life affirming pulse beneath her fingers.  She became 
                                    aware of the paramedic putting a comforting hand on 
                                    her arm and she blew out the breath she hadn't 
                                    realized she'd been holding.
                                    "You did great, Agent Scully.  Now, let's get him out 
                                    of here."
                                    Getting them all out, Mulder especially, had been 
                                    precarious at best.  It took five other paramedics 
                                    and rescue workers to get him through safely.  They 
                                    had strapped him up as best they could and then 
                                    hastily transferred him to a backboard once they were 
                                    clear of the debris field.  It was freezing outside 
                                    and Scully shivered from the cold and shock.
                                    Mulder remained unconscious for the most part except 
                                    for a lucid moment when an artic blast peeled back 
                                    the blanket from his body a little.  His eyes opened 
                                    and immediately sought out Scully who was by his 
                                    side, tucking the blanket back over him.  He gave her 
                                    a tight smile, his eyes full of love.
                                    "My one in five billion."  He trembled as they lifted 
                                    him up and headed hastily toward the waiting 
                                    ambulance.  They moved away from the Hoover Building 
                                    as if in slow motion, or at least it felt that way to 
                                    Scully.  The doctor in her began to shout that she 
                                    must be in shock herself.  If asked about that later, 
                                    all she would remember was the blood, Mulder's blood, 
                                    red on white and glistening in the glare of the 
                                    police and ambulance lights.
                                    The next minutes were spent in a blur.  The trip 
                                    through driving snow to the hospital, the cold feel 
                                    of Mulder's limp hand as she held onto it like it was 
                                    the only thing grounding her to the planet, the soft 
                                    instructions of the paramedic crew as they fought yet 
                                    another Mulder crisis made time seem as if it was 
                                    standing still.  Scully's mind chanted, "Hurry up, 
                                    hurry up, hurry up," until the ambulance pulled into 
                                    the hospital.
                                    Countless cups of bad hospital coffee and the 
                                    comforting presence of Walter Skinner got her through 
                                    the next hours.  He never left her side during the 
                                    six plus hours of emergency vascular and orthopedic 
                                    surgery that Mulder underwent.
                                    Exhaustion finally claimed her.  She was sound asleep 
                                    and covered by a blanket around her shoulders when 
                                    the doctor came to tell her that Mulder was out of 
                                    danger and in recovery.  She wept in Skinner's arms, 
                                    not caring who saw her tears, finally giving way to 
                                    the untold stress she had held inside while her boss 
                                    whispered quiet reassurances to her.  He had cheated 
                                    death yet again.  She could scarcely believe it.
                                    Mulder's investigative mind got the distinct 
                                    impression that Scully was being secretive as she 
                                    pushed his wheelchair up to her apartment door.  He 
                                    hadn't wanted to travel home in a wheelchair, but he 
                                    acquiesced once she gave him a look that brooked no 
                                    challenge.  With a struggle, she had managed to get 
                                    the contraption in the elevator.
                                    Scully was making a big deal of looking for her keys.  
                                    Mulder was just about to reach into his pocket and 
                                    hand over his own when the door was opened by an 
                                    overjoyed Frohike, wearing an apron, no less.
                                    "Hey, Mulder man, good to see ya, and the lovely 
                                    Agent Scully."  Mulder grinned as his height 
                                    challenged friend came outside to assist wheeling him 
                                    in to what Mulder could only describe as the most 
                                    romantic setting he had ever laid eyes on.  When he 
                                    looked up at Scully, she was only able to nod, her 
                                    eyes full of tears at what Frohike had managed to 
                                    achieve in only a few hours.  It was utterly 
                                    beautiful.  The tree, the table set for two and the 
                                    candles looked perfect.  Their friends were miracle 
                                    workers and certainly lived up to their promise.
                                    "Scully, it's fantastic!  You did this for us, Fro?"
                                    "Yeah, yeah, sure.  You are one lucky son-of-a-bitch, 
                                    you know?  You have a wonderful lady there.  She told 
                                    me your interrupted plans for a romantic soiree, so 
                                    the guys and I decided to bring the mountain to 
                                    Mohammad.  Didn't think you'd want to go cruising 
                                    with all that bruising, man.  How ya doin'?"
                                    "Im . . .I'm good.  My bruises kind of blend in with 
                                    the tree decorations, and as much as I love the 
                                    holiday food in the hospital, I'm . . .what are those 
                                    amazing smells coming from the kitchen . . .geez, you 
                                    cooked too.  Scully chuckled behind him, wiping her 
                                    "Yup, the food is all ready and just needs to be put 
                                    on the table, and I even took the liberty of fetching 
                                    the Christmas stocking with Scully's gifts like you 
                                    asked me.
                                    Mulder looked sheepish as he turned to Scully's 
                                    questioning smile.
                                    "You're not the only one who can make clandestine 
                                    phone calls, Scully.  Merry Christmas, a little late.  
                                    I love you."  Scully squealed with delight as Frohike 
                                    handed Mulder the gifts to give her.  Then he blushed 
                                    as she flung herself into Mulder's embrace.
                                    "Uh, this night belongs to the two of you.  I may be 
                                    a jackass but I can cook.  Enjoy and have a 
                                    wonderful, romantic evening.  You lucky dog," he 
                                    whispered as an afterthought in Mulder's ear as the 
                                    little man made his exit, yelling ho, ho, ho loudly 
                                    down the hall.
                                    "Night Fro and thanks."  They both laughed, hugging 
                                    each other.
                                    "Scully, I love you so much." Mulder took her hands 
                                    and pulled her to him.
                                    "I love you too, more than you could ever imagine.  
                                    Together we will rebuild the X-Files.  We are 
                                    together in every sense of the word now."  She hugged 
                                    him again as he blinked back tears.  Somehow the 
                                    wrecked office seemed less important tonight.  He had 
                                    all he wanted right here.
                                    "I know, but for tonight we have this and there are a 
                                    few things I've been longing to tell you.  My heart 
                                    can't hold them in anymore."
                                    "That's wonderful, Mulder, because I want to hear 
                                    them.  I want our truth."
                                    "The truth is in here."  His hand closed over hers 
                                    and brought it to rest over his heart.
                                    Together they celebrated their Christmas miracle over 
                                    a wonderful, magical meal, watching the love they had 
                                    for each other reflect in each other's eyes, 
                                    listening to the snow fall softly against the window.
                                    The End

artwork soon.