Sent: Wednesday, November 29, 2000 7:17 PM


SPOILER: After Closure but before anything else

SUMMARY: How much in life is decision and how much

DISCLAIMER: any characters you recognize belong to
Mr. Carter & Co; others belong to me but I share.
I will return them in pristine condition.
(Well almost!)

THANKS to Leslie, without whose help as a beta reader,
this would only be half of what it is.
Thanks for your time and effort Leslie!

ARCHIVES: Let me know where it's gone please!

Feedback please, I NEED to know what you think!

See my stories at


He arched in agony as his arm was palpitated.
The pain helped him to focus on his surroundings;
bring him back from the ether in which he had been
floating. Besides his arm, which hurt like hell,
he had the mother of all headaches, and he ached
all over.

Now that he was more focused he realised that he
was in ER. The doctor was saying something to

"Sir, Can you tell me your name?"

He was just about to answer...What *was* his name?
He couldn't remember, but he didn't feel too bothered
about this fact.

Drowsily he replied "Dunno, can't 'member."

He heard the doctor say to someone "Great, we just
needed another John Doe in tonight!"

The pain was mind-blowing; he felt his grasp on
reality loosen, felt himself falling into darkness.

The next voice he heard was feminine.
"Hello, are you okay?"

He tried to turn his head, he groaned, and his eyes
fluttered open.

"It's all right," she said, shining the light
into his eyes. He squinted against the bright light
and raised the arm that hurt less protectively over
his eyes.

"Damn, that's bright," he grumbled. "Can't you aim
it somewhere else?"

She shifted the light away from his face. "Sorry,"
she said. "How are you feeling?"

He felt like saying "Fine", but he knew he wasn't.

"Not sure," he muttered, trying to roll and sit up.
Not a good idea, he thought.

"Hold it, Cowboy, not so fast," she warned, as he
shut his eyes again and sank back down, trying to
control the wave of nausea that threatened.
"Your head has had a nasty brush with a bullet;
fortunately it won't spoil your looks. You've
managed to break your arm as well. What happened to

He glanced away. "I don't remember," he mumbled
after a moment. "Who are you?" He looked at the
dark-haired, dark-eyed woman beside him. Somehow
this was not right. He was expecting someone else,

"I'm Josephine Quentin," she volunteered.
"I'm your nurse for this shift. You can call me Jo."

He winced as he tried to flex the fingers of his
now plastered, broken arm. "God that hurts!"

With a groan he tried to sit up again, only to feel
Jo's restraining hand on his shoulder. "My head
aches like hell."

"How did you get here?" Jo asked. "Were you in a

He shook his head and then swore under his breath.
God the pain! His brain felt as if it'd been used
as a punch bag. The movement made him nauseous.

"I don't know. Where am I?"

He peered into the gloom that surrounded them.
He seemed to know from the layout that he was in
a hospital room. He had a feeling that he'd spent
a lot of time either here or somewhere similar.

She told him the name of the hospital, but he was
none the wiser.

He could feel himself getting more and more
anxious. He didn't think he liked hospitals. He
felt his breathing accelerate and the feeling of
panic threaten to overcome him. He heard the voice
deep in his head.

"Come on, it's okay. Deep slow breaths."
He found this familiar voice very reassuring.

He looked around the room. He had the impression
that something or someone very important to him,
should be there, but wasn't. He felt too woozy from
the anesthetic he must have been given to work out
what it was that was missing.

He slumped back against the pillows.

"They found you wandering about, outside the
hospital," Jo told him. "When they brought you in,
you had no ID on you. Nothing to even give us a clue
as to where you could be

She added. "As soon as you're up to it, local cops
will want to interview you to ascertain if a crime
has been committed."
He shut his eyes; right now he couldn't care less.

Fear bubbled up inside him. What if he were in some
serious kind of trouble? He might still be in
danger and he'd never know it. He had a feeling
that he *was* in danger; but from what?
Still the feeling that something was missing! Some
integral part of him wasn't there. He analyzed this
for a moment; it wasn't his memory, it was something
far more important.
He felt as though he'd been abandoned.
Suddenly it came to him. It wasn't something, but
*someone*. Someone who should be here with him, caring
for him. Someone without whom he felt totally lost.

Nervously he looked around. Then another thought
chilled him. What if he'd hurt someone? What if he
were a fugitive on the run? NO. He rejected the idea
as quickly as it took shape. He knew that wasn't him.

He tried to penetrate the darkness that surrounded
him like a thick blanket of fog, but it expanded
around him, threatening to suck him in. Pain lanced
through him. It was no good. He couldn't remember.

His stomach heaved, sending bile into his throat
and making his head spin.

"You okay?" Jo asked. "You feel sick? Try to hold on
a moment I'll get you a bowl."

His stomach rolled more alarmingly than before, and
he had to swallow hard to keep from disgracing
himself. Hell, why did he always have to react to
anesthetics like that? He knew that much about
Gradually he felt his stomach settle a little.

Jo said. "I'll just get you something to ease the
nausea and help you relax a bit.

His head pounded as he tried to delve into his
memory. He felt dizzy every time he tried to move
his head.
Again, the feelings of helplessness and frustration
washed over him. His hands shook. He clenched them
to his side, only to immediately regret it as pain
shot through his right arm.
His head throbbed abominably. He sensed that on the
other side of the black void lay something that he
didn't want to face, but he was damned if he could
get any sort of fix on it. He shut his eyes in
concentration. He heard Jo coming back with the
He was glad that it didn't take long to kick in.
He still hurt, but now he didn't seem to care.

He must have drifted off to sleep for some time,
because when he woke up Jo wasn't there, in her place
was a young fair-haired girl.

She looked as if she should be in high school, he
thought to himself. "Must be getting old!"

"Pardon, did you say something? Can I get you

" Um yes, I need to use the phone. I've gotta
It had gone. He knew it was important, just out of
reach, but he couldn't get hold of the memory.
He felt his eyes fill with tears as the memory evaded
him. He saw the concern on her face.

She gently touched his cheek. "It's okay ," she said.
"It *will* come back you know."
It was all he could do not to wrench his face away
from her hand. He knew she had meant to be kind, but
he couldn't bear anyone touching him like that.
No one but... the feeling of great loss overwhelmed

He hadn't bothered with the phone. Instead he lay
in bed trying to come to terms with the fact he
could remember nothing about himself.
Was he married? He looked down at his left hand; no
wedding band, no pale mark where a ring might have
been. That didn't mean anything. Maybe he'd never
worn one.

Could he have been a priest, a minister? No,
somehow that didn't sit right. A believer of sorts
yes, but not a man of the cloth. He did feel he had
a vocation, some sort of driving force, but what?
There was someone special in his life, someone he
had expected to be here with him. Who?

All this speculation was making his headache worse.
He tried to think about his parents.
This train of though only served to make
him feel very agitated. He tried to picture his
mother's face, her voice, but nothing came through
except a feeling of dread. What sort of a son was
he, who couldn't remember his own mother?
He was beginning to feel drowsy again as the
Tylenol #3 the young nurse had given him kicked in.

She was there, the light was dim, the room around
them in shadows, he could hardly make out her face or
her dark hair. He could smell her perfume, something
flowery and familiar from his childhood. There was
music in the background. He didn't recognize it but
somehow knew it was her favorite.

"You've got to promise me", she said in a voice of
steel. "Promise me you'll do that."
He didn't answer, nearly choking on the sorrow
that clogged his throat. She squeezed his shoulder

"Promise me," she repeated.

He heard his little boy voice reply, "I promise
Mom, I promise I'll find her for you."

Suddenly the room was full of light. He blinked
against the brightness and saw Jo standing in the

"Are you okay? You were having a bad dream. I could
hear you shouting down the hallway."

He raked his good hand through his hair, struggling
to get his bearings and to remember the snatches of
dream, which were already fading. He felt moisture
on his face and felt embarrassed as he realised it
was tears.
"I'm okay," he said. "Thanks."

She backed out of the door. "I'll bring you a drink,"
she said. "I'll give you a few minutes."

"I'll be all right," he told her as she shut the door
behind her. He tried to hold on to the bits of the
strange dream that floated in his head like
brightly coloured scraps of paper before a wind,
but all he could remember was a woman's voice.

"Promise me," she kept repeating.

When Jo returned with the drink he sucked it
down as if it were plasma and he a vampire. That's
a strange metaphor, he thought. Yet somehow it felt
really 'him'.

He could kill for some sunflower seeds!
Was his memory returning?
He asked Jo if she could get him some, and she
promised she'd try, even though it was an odd
She told him an officer would be along presently to
interview him. The sooner they could work out what
had happened and who he was, the sooner they could
discharge him. His eyes lit up.

"Hold your horses," she said. "It'll be a while
before you to go anywhere. We can't just let you loose
on the street in the condition you're in."

The cop that came to interview him looked like a

"I can't find anything to indicate who you might be.
No one matching your description has been reported
missing or is wanted for anything that I can see."
The law enforcement officer continued, "The only
other thing I can do is to take your fingerprints and
see if they're on file anywhere, but that might
take a while."

"You mean find out if I have a criminal record?" He
had gut feelings about certain things, and not
trusting the police department was one of them.
When did I get to be so paranoid? He felt so
vulnerable, lying in this hospital bed.
He knew that he couldn't trust anyone. No, there was
one person he trusted with his life! But who was
it? Was she looking for him? Were his family
worried about him? Instinctively he knew that was
not the case. Yet he must have someone to care about
him; he must.
Suddenly he stopped. Why had he though *she*?

"There are a lot of different reasons," the cop was
saying. He realised that he'd not been listening.
"They would tell us if you've been in the military,
or held some kind of government job. It would be a

He tried to focus on the what the cop was saying.

"Is it voluntary?" he'd asked the uniformed man.

"At this point," he replied.

An intense feeling of claustrophobia washed over
Him. He realised that he wasn't ready to deal with
this yet.
In the end he had agreed very reluctantly. He felt he
was putting himself in danger and had nobody to
watch out for him.

The interview had lasted over an hour, and afterwards
he felt as though he'd been put through a wringer, and
all for nothing. He could remember nothing. The harder
he tried the worst it became.
The only thing was that now he was certain of *her* in
his life. Someone so very important; so very special
to him and he knew nothing about her at all.

Another day passed and with it came a slight
improvement in his condition. His vision did not
blur as often, and with the help of a male
nurse he had managed to get to the bathroom. It had
been hard going. His head hurt so much he nearly
upchucked his last meal, but all in all he'd
managed both to use the facilities without parting
company with his dinner.

He was a day nearer going home-wherever home was? He
couldn't discharge himself 'Against medical advice'.
He had nowhere to go, no one to go to.
Presently a doctor came to see him. He explained about
the condition.

"With amnesia," he said; "Your memory could come
back all at once, with no warning, or little by
little in a series of flashbacks." He made some
notes on his pad.
"Have you had any of those", he'd asked.

"It's been more like vague impressions, feelings;
I don't feel as though I have a family, yet..." He
suddenly remembered his dream. The woman had been
his mother! He found the doctor studying him
without comment.

"Rest now and we'll talk more tomorrow."

Sleep; maybe tomorrow would bring some answers, he
told himself

Sleep only brought nightmares!
Another woman was there, a tall woman with longish
dark hair and dark eyes. Fragments of arguments
floated through his head. But he couldn't make out who
was the instigator. There was anger but sadness, too.
He tried to work out what his connection was to this
woman. He felt he knew her well. Images faded in
and out. Scenes of the two of them talking,
walking. Waking up next to her. It all felt so
distant. There had been some kind of break between
them, he was sure of that. He couldn't remember. He
did not trust her; she'd betrayed him! She'd hurt

There was another woman. He could not see her face,
but it didn't matter. He felt her comforting presence.
She would protect him, guard his back, die for him if

He woke up in a cold sweat, screaming.

Jo came running in to him. He was shaking.

"Are you okay?" she asked.
"You've had a nightmare. You were screaming for
'Diana.' Is she your wife? Is she family?"

He shivered and suddenly hoped to God that she

The nurse finally managed to calm him down. He
lay in the bed with the soft light she'd left on
for him.

He was so afraid. And then the sense of nagging
dread returned. And with it the pleading voice
from the earlier dream. What had he promised?
And why did he not want to remember?

He just needed the other woman in his dreams, the one
that had shielded him from the dark-haired one.
It was all too much for him. He needed her so very
much. Tears wet his cheeks and dampened his pillow.
Finally he slept.

He spent the following day wallowing in self-pity.
He couldn't watch TV as the flickering screen gave
him a terrible headache. He tried to get out of bed
and walk around a bit, but he still suffered from
vertigo a lot of the time.
Shit! He was in a hell of a mess. How was he ever
going to get out of here?

The answer to that question came very early the
next morning, in the form of a diminutive fireball
who had blue eyes to die for. She blazed a trail
into his room with a tall, bald headed, be-speckled
man in her wake.

He couldn't take his eyes off her. Someone so small
couldn't possibly be emitting so much energy; she
looked royally pissed-off with him!
What had he done this time? he asked himself. Then
he wandered why he'd asked himself that in the
first place.
The authoritative man next to her didn't look
pleased either.

But he could trust her implicitly. Where had that
knowledge come from?

"If you ever do that to me again, Mulder," she all but
screamed at him; "I will personally kick your ass
from here into the middle of next week. DO YOU

"Yes", he said feebly; automatically. But he didn't.
Not at all. What had he done?
Yet somehow he knew she had every right to be so upset
with him. He didn't understand who these people were.
One thing was for certain. He was not on their top
flavor of the month list.
He had a premonition that he was however, top of a
lot of people's shit list.

Mulder! Was that his name? Sounded a bit strange to
him.He looked at the tall be-speckled man for
confirmation. This man seemed to know him too.

The commotion had brought the doctor and a nurse
into his room. These two demanded to know who the
newcomers were. Names were exchanged, badges
Agent Dana Scully FBI, now that was a nice name;
unfamiliar but sort of comforting.
It was more than could be said for Assistant
Director Walter Skinner, now there was a man to
haul your ass for you. He could see he was in deep
shit, just by looking at the man!

The FBI. What had he done to warrant their
involvement. He didn't understand any of it. He felt
so glad when he seen her coming through the door of
his room, almost at peace somehow. Now he was so
A kaleidoscope of thoughts, sounds and colors
assaultedhis already fragile brain.
How did they know who he was? How had they found him?
Why were they so angry with him, what had he done?
He had a feeling that her wrath was fully justified.
God, what was he involved in?
His headache returned as did the nausea; he
disgraced himself before he had a chance to do
anything to stop it.

Agent Dana Scully reached his side before the
nurse could react. He saw such compassion in her
eyes, that it took his breath away.

"Mulder! Look at me"

"I'm fine."

"No, you're not."

"I'll be all right, just give me a few minutes"

She gently ran her fingers through his hair, taking
care not to touch the injured side.
He was lost.
He didn't know her from Eve, yet he was surer than
he was of life itself that he loved this woman!
How can you just fall in love with someone you've
just met?

How was he going to sort this one out?

AD Skinner came to his rescue temporarily.

"Agent Scully," he said. "If we want to haul this
Agent's ass back to DC ASAP, you'd better speak to
the doctor in charge, while I see to the paper
So, I'm an agent too, He thought. He still couldn't
think of himself as Mulder; it seemed such a strange

Agent Scully had brought him a bag with some clothes.
He wasn't about to ask how she'd got them. She
looked as if she had a great deal to say to him,
but was saving it for later. He had a feeling that
most of it would not be good.
The events so far this morning were beginning to take
their toll. All he wanted to do was to curl somewhere.
His brain was being bombarded by facts from all sides.
It was more than he could take in, more than he wanted
to take in.
She seemed to notice how bad he was beginning to feel.

"You rest a while Mulder. We'll see what can be done
to get you out of here."

"Thanks, Dana." This earned him a very frosty look
from both her and her boss. What had he done now?
What was he to her and AD Skinner?

He was too tired to puzzle out what he should call
her. 'Agent Scully' doesn't seem right either, was
his last waking thought.

When he awoke some time later, he saw she was
sitting by his bedside.

"Thought I'd run out on you?" he quipped.

"Mulder," she said with exasperation "That's
*exactly* why we're in this position now."

"Oh," he said rather sheepishly.

While he lay resting, she took the opportunity to
fill him.
They had found him quite by accident.
The fingerprints the cop had taken had matched up
when run against the Government employees' database.
This had been passed on to the FBI and then Skinner.

She explained he was an FBI agent, that they had
been partners for a number of years. AD Skinner was
their direct superior. They worked on cases
deemed unsolvable by the other departments of the
FBI. X-Files.
He believed what she told him; nevertheless it
felt very spooky. He remembered none of this.
He had a gut feeling that a great deal hadn't been
said. He felt that no matter how bad, he could cope
with truth. It was all this uncertainty that was
killing him.

He didn't know how he was going to cope with all this.
How would he earn his living if his memory did not
He felt very apprehensive.
The facts he'd been given were for some reason more
unsettling than the total ignorance that he'd been in
There was something not quite right here. Something
was missing. Something vital to his existence. It was
these missing parts that frightened him most.
He still could not remember how he had gotten here in
the first place. One thing he was certain about,
though, no matter what, he could trust Dana Scully.

"Dana," he tried.

"Scully, it's just Scully," she'd replied.

He did not know what to make of this. What had been
their relationship? Had they been friends, just
He couldn't figure it out, and she wasn't telling.
Yet he knew the moment he saw her, that he loved her.
Was this feeling new or something that had always been
There? By the way she was reacting to him he didn't
think these feelings of his were reciprocated.
What did she feel about him?
He wanted so much for her to care about him too.
The signals he was receiving were confused . Nothing
seemed to make sense. There was more to all this,
a lot more.
Why wasn't he being told? What were they keeping from
him and why?
Something awful was about to happen; something that
was beyond his control and that control terrified him.
Panic clutched his throat making breathing difficult.
The harder he tried to do this the more dizzy he felt.
Then the shaking began.

In a flash she was at his side, holding him in her
arms. It felt so good to be there; so safe. But he
couldn't stop what was happening to him.

"Mulder, you're hyperventilating! Breathe. Slowly,
take it in deep, slowly, slowly. That's it. In, hold
it. Out smoothly, and again, that's it. That's it.
You're okay, Mulder, I'll take care of you. Don't
worry, it'll be fine."

Gradually as she stroked his hair and talked to him,
the tremors subsided.

"I'll look after you until you're better," she told

After a while she moved away from him.

In any event it took until noon before they
could spring him.
She helped him get dressed. He wanted to do it on
his own, but the cast on his right arm made it very

"If we're done here, we'd better get moving. We
have the 2 pm flight to Washington to catch, and
it's half an hour from here to the airport. Skinner's
seen to all the paperwork. Just say goodbye to
the guys here and we're out of here."

Skinner helped him into the wheelchair and pushed him
out to the elevator and the exit. He could hear the
clicking of Scully's heals on the linoleum as she
followed on behind.
He was going into the unknown.

He dozed for much of the journey. They put in the back
of their rental car on the way to the airport.
Once on board the plane He was glad to see that Scully
had finagled him enough room for him to stretch out
and rest.
On waking up as they were landing, he was embarrassed
to find that he'd spent most of the flight with his
head resting in Scully's lap and her hand on his
It had felt good. He hoped she hadn't minded.

Once at National Airport, they had split up.
Skinner collected his car to drive himself back
to Crystal City, while Mulder tagged along with

"I'm going to take you past the Hoover building
to see if that jogs your memory a bit," she said.
She told him that National Airport was in Arlington
County, just on the other side of the Potomac. As
they left the airport and started their drive up
George Washington parkway, he admired the beauty
of the tree-lined parkway.
They drove over 14th Street Bridge and along 14th
Street. Scully told him that they were traveling on
Route 50 to Constitution Avenue. This, she said, was
only a block away from the FBI headquarters.

Mulder looked around as she drove, but nothing
seemed familiar. They drove around for a while, but
Scully sensed that he was tiring "It's not far from
here to my place," she said. "We should be there in
about a quarter of an hour, if the traffic holds."

He looked at Scully, uncertain what to make of
this. He felt uncomfortable.

"Are you coming on to me?"

She chuckled softly.
"Now, *that* sounds more like the Mulder we all know
and love! It's just easier to look after you at my
place, that's all."

"Oh." He didn't know what else to say. More confusion
and innuendo.

"Look, Mulder, tomorrow, after you've had a chance
to rest, we'll drive past your place and you can
pick up whatever else you need. Okay?"

The lady had obviously thought all this out, so
there was little use in him arguing. It sounded like a
plan. Anyway he was beginning to feel very
Once they were through the door of her apartment she
set about putting him to bed in her own bed. He
protested that he'd be okay on the couch.

"Humor me, okay ," she said.
He did feel a little weak and woozy, probably from
that pain pill Scully had made him have. He never
should have taken it, Mulder thought as he watched her
turn down her bed for him.
He wanted to get her into bed and now here she was,
about to tuck him in while he could scarcely keep his
eyes open.
Where did that thought come from?
Too far gone to argue, he slipped out of his shoes and
allowed her to help him out of his pants and shirt.
She helped him into bed and he lay down wearing only
gray knit boxers.

"Thanks," he whispered, his eyes already closing. It
was comforting lying there in the light feminine room,
the smell of her all around him. Turning on his side,
he was asleep in moments.

Through a veil of formless shadows he was stepping
back. The air was full of pain, throbbing and
singing about him. He felt the rushing wind, as he
crouched terrified and trembling, his arm over his

"Samantha!" he screamed. "Where are you?"

In that moment he felt as if he were balanced
between life and death. The darkness and the
light...He wanted no part of the darkness, he turned
away from it. He felt as if he were suspended in
the heaving, pulsating space. There was the
brilliant light. He wanted to follow that light,
yet he could not. He was frozen.

His voice echoed and re-echoed through the dim
darkness. The light throbbed and then faded. The
wind stilled, the humming ceased. He was still, the
throbbing pain in his head returning in full force.

"Mulder?" a voice called to him, as if carried to
him on the very air he breathed. Slowly he opened
his eyes. In the dim light he could barely see her
hands as they reached out to touch his face.

"Mulder?" Firm, warm vibrant with life, Scully
opened her arms to him, the soft silky fabric of
her pajamas brushing his skin.

Her fingers brushed his lips.

"Hush, it's only a dream," she whispered, so
softly it might have been the moaning of the wind.
He felt the terrible sadness trying to escape from
inside him.
She gathered him to her, rocking him. It felt as
though she had done this a thousand times before.
He needed her so much.
A lifetime of training had made him strong, but now
that strength gave way. The body gave way to the

His body was still, his breathing quiet. He could
feel the warmth of her breath touching his skin.
She kissed the side of his head. He allowed the
warmth of her to wash over him. He could feel his
tears falling. She held him close, soothing away his
He remained that way only for a few moments, then
he pulled away from her, a rush of chill air
wafting between them. There was a strange, almost
defiant quality to the movement, almost as if he
blamed her for allowing him this shameful act of
The spell was broken, the dream was shattered, but
still she stayed close, would not abandon him. She
cuddled against him, continuing to stroke his
shoulder gently.
Mulder lay on his back, one arm flung across his
face, grateful for the darkness. Scully's cheek was
a gentle weight on his shoulder, as she lay against
him, carefully avoiding his injured arm. He
breathed in, filling his lungs, aware of the faint
musky rose scent of her body, that delicious
womanly scent that was intrinsically Scully. He
felt it shroud him, protect him.

Something that had been frozen a long time began to
thaw inside. The sensation was almost painful. The
rush of emotions centered in his heart, a longing, a
yearning, a promise of what could be if he could
make this leap of faith and free himself from the
feelings of guilt.
Guilt? Or self-deception? Or a shield to guard his

With his good arm her gathered her closer to
himself as sleep finally overcame him.

The morning dawned clear and bright. The sky
through Scully's window was tinted the ice blue of
frozen pond water.
Mulder turned his head gingerly. Her vibrant,
cinnamon-coloured hair spilled across the white
pillowcase. She looked so beautiful, so peaceful.
She was his life. He knew this without having to
wait for his memory to return.

Gently he pulled her in closer to him so her head
rested on his shoulder. He was content just to lay
there breathing in the unique scent of her hair.
He reached over to smooth the hair from her forehead.
She didn't move.
His eyes settled on Scully's generous mouth, her face
in sleep was relaxed, yet there was an aura of
about her that he'd noticed from the beginning. Those
compelling azure eyes were closed now, her dark lashes
longer and thicker than they had a right to be,
resting on her flushed cheeks. She looked wonderful.
There was so much he didn't know about this woman, so
much he felt he hid from himself.
No matter, for here he was, in her bed watching her
sleep, enabling him to study her at will. Four in the
morning was a time of truth, of setting evasion aside,
he knew. There was no denying that he wanted her right
were he had her, in her bed, only awake.

Was it because she was special or because he was so
very needy, something he denied even to himself?
Probably both, he decided, if honesty was to count

Just holding her hand warmed him, her touch on his
cheek excited him, her innocent kisses on his forehead
aroused him in a way he'd either forgotten or had
never known before. He remembered those kisses from
before. That much he could grasp back from the fog.

Yet if truth was the goal, he had to admit that she
was probably the wrong woman to want. Already he knew
he loved her, meaning that she could so easily hurt
him. But then he also knew that this was something she
would never willingly do to him.
Why was Scully so different?
Suddenly, like a beam if light through a chink in the
curtains he thought he understood. She was different
in that she wasn't looking for a man to spend her
future with, either. She had plans, independent goals
that she wanted to achieve on her own, beholden to no
one. For years now, she'd held firm in her need to
succeed, not to stray from the path she'd set for
herself. Did he figure anywhere in those plans?

He touched her face.
Scully let out a ragged sigh.
His thoughts wondered back. He remembered fractured
fragments. Not so much things or events but feelings,
emotions. He felt that in the years he'd been alone,
no woman had interested him enough to matter.
But this one mattered. Probably too much.

He was aware that he had a horrible habit of
overanalyzing everything. Why couldn't he be the
kind of man who'd hop into a woman's bed with no
Because his heart was involved. Because making love
was not a causal thing to him.
Making love.
Was that what he was seriously considering here?
His gaze fell on her hand resting on the sheet at
his side. Gently he traced the small fingers,
feeling their strength.

When he was holding her like this tomorrow didn't
matter. What he knew or remembered paled into
insignificance compared with the feeling that *this*
was what was really important to him. This woman,
who he had just met yet had known since the beginning
of time. This other half of him, his very soul.
He lay for a longtime with her in his arm, finally
at peace with himself. What ever had gone before was
no longer important. He had this moment and today
ahead of him. What more could he possibly need?
Tenderly laying his hand in hers, he closed his eyes
and fell asleep.

Later, He was to wonder what woke him. A sound, a
movement a vague dream? His eyes opened slowly and
his vision cleared, finally focusing in the light. He
was gazing into azure-blue eyes staring into his as if
she'd been studying him for some time.

He felt the heat move to his face. Her fingers were
still twined with his, only she'd turned their clasped
hands over, trapping his. His heart picked up its
rhythm as the minutes ticked by and still his eyes
stayed locked on hers.

He was the first to speak, in an effort to defuse the
situation. "If I'd known all it took to get you into
bed was a broken arm, I'd have arranged it sooner."

Scully let the comment go. "Are you in pain?"

"No," he lied, for the pain had awakened him. But he'd
forgotten it quickly enough when he realized that
Scully was asleep beside him. For a moment he'd
thought he was dreaming.

He reached over with his good hand and stroked the
backs of his fingers along the satin of her cheek.

"You're so beautiful." Silently, she watched him,
her eyes softening, her lips parting slightly.
"I suppose you hear that all the time."

"Constantly. Day and night." Her voice was low and

Suddenly from beneath the sheets came a loud growling
rumble. Mulder felt his face turn crimson. Pulling
back, Scully smiled down at him.

"I suppose you want feeding, G-man?"

Padding into the kitchen barefoot, she shoved back her
disheveled hair with both hands and put on some

He was sitting up examining the cast on his arm. He
glanced up and saw the coffee moments before he smelt
the welcome aroma.

"Ah, you read my mind." He took the mug she held out
to him and sipped. "Mmm, and she makes good coffee,

Scully sat down cross-legged on the bed, looking at
him over the rim of her mug. He found this quite

"I was wondering how I'm going to take a shower with
this," he said indicating the cast.

"I can put plastic wrap around it, but you'll still
have to keep it out of the water. My mother used to do
that after she had surgery on her foot."

"Good idea." He drained his mug." I guess I'd better
get on with it."

"Come and eat first, then I'll help you."

Easing back, he put on a mischievous smile, needing to
lighten up. "Have you ever shared a shower?"

"No, but I've helped you take one on a number of

Mulder wasn't quite sure how to answer that. Instead
he scooted off the bed, and walked towards the table.

"Let's eat then, I'm starving."

When he'd finished his second bowl of Corn Pops,
Scully went into the kitchen to get the plastic wrap.

In a matter of minutes, she had his arm thoroughly
wrapped. Mulder tested the water temperature, then
stepped in. He had his back turned to her as she
lathered up her big white bath sponge. He stood there
obediently with his plastic-covered arm held out to
one side and waited.
Scully began with his shoulders and moved down his
Quickly, she ran the sponge over his arms and legs,
avoiding other aspects of his body.

"Here, you finish," she said, handing him the sponge.
"I'll be back in a minute to do your hair."

Mulder shook his wet hair from his eyes. He was glad
she'd left him, he felt oddly shy now. By the time she
returned, he was sitting crouched up in shower base.
It didn't take Scully long the wash his short hair for
him, taking care not to knock the scab that had formed
on his temple.

"Thank you," he said, his voice oddly thick with

"You know you're welcome."

He was glad she left him alone to finish.
He felt very confused. On the one hand, he was very
tempted to take what he felt for her further.
Sometimes she seemed to be giving him the 'come on',
before shying away from him.

He could feel that before this accident they'd had
some sort of a relationship. What wasn't clear to him,
and she wasn't helping the matter, was exactly what
that relationship was.

They seemed very natural with each other in unnatural
situations, and very ill at ease in that he thought of
as everyday ones.
He really didn't know what to do for the best.
They had obvious been very close, but there seemed to
be a wariness about both of them. He suspected that
they had shared a bed on occasions before, but surly
if they had made love he'd somehow know. It didn't
feel as though they had.

There was great depth of feeling between them; a link.
This he knew instinctively. He decided to play it cool
until he could remember something more. What irritated
him was that she knew what their relationship was, but
she wasn't telling, wasn't even dropping any hints.
He knew what he felt about Scully now, but he didn't
know the woman at all.

He put on the boxers and sweat pants she'd left out
for him. Realizing he'd need help with his top he left
the bathroom to go in search of her.

Scully was in the bedroom, clearing up. As she helped
him finish dressing, she outlined what she'd planned
for the day.

"If you feel up to it, we could drive up to your
apartment this afternoon. Your fish are probably
starving, you need clothes, but most of all, being in
a familiar environment might jog your memory."

"Yeah, sure," he said. He hoped he could rest soon.
The exertions of the morning were beginning to made
him feel quite light headed.

"Mulder, are you okay? Come and sit down. You look
very pale."
He was grateful of the support as she helped him on to
the couch.

"You rest up a while. We'll see what we're doing
later. Okay?"

He felt his eyes closing even as he felt the afghan
spread over him.

He awoke to the smell of cooking, not the type that
sometimes turns your stomach. If anything, the smell
made him realize just how hungry he was. Scully seemed
to be quite a good cook, certainly , he enjoyed
everything she put in front of him. She seemed quite
amused at one point when he asked for some more

"X-files really *do* exist!"
He looked blank.

"Oh Mulder, it's just that you'd rather eat green
jello than let a vegetable pass your lips, and here
you are asking for more."
She laughed. It was a lovely sound.

He learnt two things from that afternoon's excursion.
One was that he thought his apartment was a dump, and
the other, that if he didn't think about it, he knew
exactly were everything was kept there.
Scully seemed surprised by both.

The day had taken it's toll on him. After the light
supper he needed to sleep.

He felt so cold. It was around him, inside him, he
could almost smell it. He recognized anxiety, dread
and fear. Layer upon layer of icy, silver gauze,
billowing in the wind, brushing, snagging, binding.
Entangling him. White and gray, chilling,
overwhelming. Wave after wave lapping softly against
him; gradually drowning him in despair. He could see a
soft gray light to the side of him. Through the
swirling gauze he could see her. Stepping forward, he
was in a room white and gray, so many shades so many
She lay covered in the white. Her cinnamon-coloured
hair dull. Stark contrast to the glacial white. Her
face so pale. He would sell his soul just to see her
open those azure-blue eyes just once more. He knew
this was not to be.
He could not reach her. She was deciding, going. She
was leaving him. Keening and sobbing swirled around
dancing with the icy silver gauze.

"Scully! Scully, don't leave me." He shouted.

He felt her warmth cut through the chill, her arms
holding him safe. Her gentle breath stirring his hair.
The very smell of her was even now chasing the demons
away. He grasped her to himself as though he would
never let go, sobs racking him all the while, for all
he had lost.

"Shh, baby, you know I'd never leave you, I'd never
hurt you, shh. It's only a dream. Look I'm here now."

She rocked him in her arms as the sobs tore at him. He
felt her warm lips on his face as she tried to kiss
away his tears, tried to comfort him, but he couldn't
stop. The fear of losing her was still too great in
his mind. The knowledge that without her, he was dead.
She held him in her arms. He lay entangled with her
absorbing her warmth, her love; like a dry sponge a
pool of water. Gradually the sobbing eased and slowly
he relaxed in her safety and slept.

He awoke in the early morning, savoring the feeling of
her arms cradling him. He remembered the dream and
felt a little foolish. Carefully, so a not to waken
her, he slid out of her arms. She moaned and muttered
something, but went back to sleep.
He looked down at her, in the soft light he could see
her swollen eyes, the traces of tears still on her

"What have I done to you?" he whispered.

She stirred.
He did not want to interrupt her rest. Slowly he
got out of bed. He would go to her kitchen and make
himself a coffee.

He sorted the coffee-maker out and switched it on.
As he waited for it to come up with the goods, he
speculated on his memory loss.
A lot of his memories seemed to be there, but just
out of reach of his conscious mind. He could access
some of that when he was on 'automatic pilot'. The
moment he consciously tried to access, it all just
How long would he have to be in this no-man's-land?

He worried about doing the wrong thing as far as
Scully was concerned.
He didn't understand why she wasn't more specific
about their relationship. By her actions, she
obviously cared for him a lot, but they didn't seem to
have sexual relationship.
Exactly what was he to her? He knew that now he loved
her, trusted her with his life.
Had it been the same before his memory loss?
What had he been doing before the accident? If they
were partners, why wasn't she with him?
He felt no nearer to the answers.

The coffee was ready. He looked at the clock. It was
early , but not too early. He would pour her a cup out
as well. He filled the mugs, and knocked a spoon down
onto the floor in the process.
He reached for the spoon, stood up and saw stars as
his head made contact with the open door of one of the
top cupboards.

His head ached like hell.

"Mulder, Mulder? Are you okay. God, the man's a
walking disaster area!"

His eyes fluttered open and he realised that his head
was nestled on her lap as she knelt on the floor
beside him.

"Mulder, can't I turn my back on you for a minute
without you getting yourself into trouble?"

She leaned over him with a look of concern on her

"Mulder, can you hear me?"

He lay silent for a moment , trying to work out what
was different.
Suddenly he realised that he knew; he remembered
everything! Whatever choices life offered him, he
would always love this woman who was so angry with him
yet so very concerned.
He remembered what he'd been doing previous to being
Another intriguing snippet had come his way and he'd
ditched her again. God would he never learn?
She'd kick his butt, but good for this, and he would
be well deserving of it.

"Mulder, speak to me."

"I love you Scully, you know that don't you?"

He looked up into her worried, blue eyes, and lifted a
hand to touch her cheek to wipe away the solitary

"I'm sorry Scully, forgive me. I just don't seem to
be able to learn that lesson. I've done it to you
again, haven't I?"

"You've got your memory back."

"Yeah, everything. It's time for you to kick ass, I
deserve it."

She didn't say anything, only smiled and bent her head
to kiss
him gently on his forehead.


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