Author: Waddles 52
Summary: Mulder was on crutches at the end of Fallen
Angel. Just a little look at how he coped with the
injury in the first few days.
Spoilers: Post-ep for Fallen Angel
Disclaimer: Just for Fun. Not for Profit. No
copyright infringement intended.
Archives: After_The_Fact, others okay, just let me
know where so I can visit.
Feedback: Why, of course. Waddles52@wmconnect.com
Dedication: For Sally B., one of my all-time
favorite authors. This foot injury is for you!
Finally, they were released by the military just in
time to make their flight back to DC. The meeting
with the OPR could not be avoided and they would have
just enough time to shower and change clothes before
heading to the office.
Mulder had been limping ever since he came out of the
warehouse and if Scully's tired eyes weren't
deceiving her, it seemed to be getting worse.
"Mulder, what's wrong? Where does it hurt, exactly?"
"Scully, my entire body is a mass of pain. Between
our friendly military goons and my wild flight when
Max was taken, I have bruises on my bruises. My
right foot hurts like blazes though. I guess I
twisted it when I landed. I'll be okay. After the
meeting with the OPR, I'm sure I'll have a few days
to rest and let it heal," Mulder answered
"I'm sure you will. Mulder, you've got to stop these
impulsive forays in search of the truth. You're only
hurting your cause. For every step forward you
manage to get knocked back two more."
"Scully, I've been lectured to death. Let's just get
to the airport and get this over with," he sighed
and started limping toward their car.
"All right, Mulder, but you really need to have your
injuries checked out," she insisted.
"I'll check them out when I take my shower."
Scully decided to let the subject drop as they got
into their rental car for the trip to the airport.
Mulder managed to sleep most of the way home. Scully
had to rouse him when she pulled in front of his
"Do you want me to pick you up later?" Scully asked
as Mulder gingerly moved from his seat.
"No. Don't worry. I'll be there on time. I'll see
you later," he promised as he shut the car door and
slowly made his way up the steps. He held on to the
rail and took one step at a time.
Scully watched him until he was inside, then pushed
the gas pedal to the floor to get back to her
apartment for a quick shower before the meeting.
Mulder closed his door and began pulling off his
clothes, letting them drop to the floor as he made
his way through his apartment. When he removed the
boot from his right foot he was greeted with varying
shades of black and blue. He could feel the swelling
begin as soon as the boot was off. He ignored the
pain and continued to strip until he was in front of
After a quick shower and shave he began to get
dressed. His foot was screaming for attention and he
finally quit ignoring it when he realized the
swelling had become so great that he couldn't get a
"This will make quite an impression with the vultures
on the committee," he thought as he limped to the
closet and began to search for the crutches he knew
were stashed there after spraining his ankle in a
pick-up basketball game. Of course, they were in the
back. By the time he dug the crutches out and
finished dressing, he knew he would have to make a
trip to the ER when the meeting adjourned.
Mulder made his way to the medicine cabinet and found
some ibuprofen. He swallowed three and hoped for
Surprise, then sympathy registered on Scully's face
as she left the conference room. Mulder rose from
his seat to greet her.
"Do you hear that sound, Scully?" he asked as he
grabbed his crutches from where they had been resting
against the wall. Hammer and nails. They're
building a gallows in the town square. Don't worry."
Scully handed him a large envelope with the
information he had gathered.
"It was only a matter of time. I'm surprised I
lasted this long."
Mulder began hobbling toward the conference room. He
gave her a crooked grin and stated, "I'll break a
Mulder continued to make his way to the conference
room as Scully sat down to wait for her partner. At
least he was still her partner at that very moment,
but she wasn't sure how much longer that would
Scully feared the worst when she heard the angry
voices all the way in the hallway. After what seemed
like an eternity the door opened and Mulder limped
into the hallway, his face drawn and pale.
Scully stood up and began to walk along with him.
"They'll let me know what they've decided by five
this evening," he sighed. "Could we sit for a few
"Of course." She watched as he carefully sat down,
then she took the seat beside him. "Mulder, you
don't look so good."
"I don't feel very well," he admitted. "My foot was
so swollen by the time I finished my shower that I
couldn't get my shoe on. I had to call a cab to get
me here and I think I'll call another one to take me
home to wait for their decision."
"Mulder, since I'm waiting too, why don't you let me
take you home? A stop by the emergency room on the
way is included," she emphasized.
"I thought you'd never ask," he groaned.
"That bad, huh?"
"Way past bad, into excruciating," he winced as he
tried to move his foot.
"Let me get my purse from the office and I'll meet
you by the elevator."
"Sounds like a plan. I may be able to make it there
by the time you're ready."
"If not, I'll wait for you," Scully extended her hand
and Mulder took it, glad for the help.
By the time Mulder had positioned himself in the
passenger seat of Scully's car, he was beginning to
feel decidedly green. The pain had become so intense
that he was beginning to feel quite nauseated. The
ibuprofen he had taken on an empty stomach was
starting to add to the problem. He rolled his window
down a bit and hoped he wouldn't embarrass himself.
Scully took notice of the situation right away.
"Mulder, I've been collecting butter tubs and ice
cream buckets for my godson's school project. Mom
just gave me a bunch the other day and I haven't
delivered them yet. They're on the floor behind you
so feel free to use one if your stomach feels any
"Thanks," he mumbled as his long arm reached behind
his seat and snagged an ice cream bucket, hoping it
wouldn't be needed.
A few blocks from the hospital Mulder began to think
that he might just make it when Scully had to
maneuver around a road crew repairing potholes. The
smell of the hot asphalt was all it took to send
his stomach into convulsions as it emptied itself of
anything he had put into it for the past year, or so
"Sorry, Scully," he tried to apologize between
"That's okay, Mulder, I'm a doctor, remember? I got
over my aversion to stomach contents my first few
days in gross anatomy. I saw quite a bit of it
emerge from my fellow students, and I'm sorry to say,
some of my own."
"Really, Scully?" Mulder hiccupped as his stomach
began to settle.
"Yes, really, Mulder. After the first few days I
became immune to the sights and smells. I don't have
a problem with it now," she answered as she pulled
into the circular drive in front of the ER.
Scully got out of the car and opened Mulder's door.
"Wait here while I get a wheelchair," she directed as
she took the bucket from his hands and handed him a
She soon had him checked in and waiting in a cubicle.
The ER wasn't busy at all on a weekday afternoon.
The nurse had removed Mulder's sock and had gone to
get an ice pack. Scully was conducting her own exam.
"What do you think, Doc?" Mulder asked, his voice
still sounding rather weak.
"I think you've done quite a number on your foot.
I'd be willing to bet that there's a fracture hiding
in there somewhere."
"Can this day get any better?" Mulder groaned.
"I also wouldn't be surprised if you didn't end up
with an IV for a while. Your BP was a little low. I
think the intense pain is making you a little
"No IV! Hate 'em!" Mulder protested.
"The good thing about an IV is that they can give you
medication without sticking you over and over. I'm
guessing you'll probably get a hefty dose of Demerol
and Phenergan, or maybe morphine."
"There is nothing good about a needle, Scully,"
Mulder complained, rubbing his stomach. "Unless
they're taking it out or putting it in someone else."
He let out his breath slowly, then motioned for one
of the emesis bowls sitting on the counter.
Scully sprang into action just in time to prevent a
catastrophe as Mulder's stomach began to empty itself
of the previous year's contents.
The doctor came in followed by the nurse who was
holding an icepack.
"Well, Mr. Mulder, I won't ask how you feel. I think
that's pretty obvious." He glanced at Mulder's foot.
"I'll bet that hurts. I'm going to order an IV with
some meds for your nausea and pain, then I'll be back
to examine you when you're feeling a little better."
The nurse placed the ice pack on Mulder's foot then
followed the doctor out the door.
Scully emptied the emesis bowl and rinsed it out,
then helped Mulder clean up. "I imagine you'll have
to change into a hospital gown."
"You've been right about everything so far. Why
not?" he moaned.
"That's pretty much standard procedure with an IV,"
"Anything to cause more pain."
"If that's what you're worried about, they could cut
your clothes off," she suggested.
"I'll suffer through it," he growled as the nurse
came back with the IV set-up and a gown.
"Mr. Mulder . . ."
"I know, I know. Put on the gown."
"You got it. I'll be right back as soon as I get
Scully shook the gown out. Would you like some help,
or can you manage on your own?"
A few minutes later Mulder was wearing the gown over
his pants and Scully was very carefully pulling his
right leg over his injured foot.
Mulder groaned and hissed a few times but eventually
his pants were removed. He lay shivering on the
gurney as Scully looked for a sheet to put over him.
As if on cue, the nurse entered with the meds and a
blanket right out of the warmer, which she spread
over Mulder's shivering form.
"I'll dance at your wedding," Mulder offered in
"I'm getting married in a month and from the looks of
that foot, I don't think you'll make it," the nurse
"Uh . . ."
"I'm teasing, Mr. Mulder," she laughed as she put the
tourniquet around his left forearm. She searched for
and found a suitable vein in his hand, then warned,
"You'll feel a bee sting." She deftly injected the
numbing medication then readied the IV catheter.
"Why do I have to get stuck twice?" he whined.
"You won't feel this one. I promise."
True to her word, the needle slid right in with only
a feeling of pressure.
In a few short seconds she had everything taped down
and hooked up. Soon the saline solution was flowing
in, making him shiver once again.
"I know. It's cold at first, but in a few seconds
you should adjust. I'm going to add the meds the
doctor ordered and you should start feeling a lot
"What are you giving him?" Scully inquired.
"Demerol and phenergan," the nurse answered, emptying
the first hypodermic into the port. "Here comes the
Demerol. You might get a little rush out of it," she
"Bring it on," Mulder said tiredly.
The nurse finished up and left to find the doctor.
"So, what's next?" Mulder asked.
"What do you mean?"
"You've predicted everything so far, so what's next?"
"Oh, I think the doctor will come in and do a hands
on examination, then order x-rays."
"That's gonna hurt," he slurred.
"I would imagine so. Be thankful your meds are
already on board."
The doctor came in and asked the usual questions and
poked and prodded Mulder's foot. The standard x-rays
were ordered and soon Mulder was dozing on the x-ray
table. After he was awakened for some rather painful
maneuvering to get his foot in the right position,
Mulder was sent back to his cubicle to wait for the
doctor to deliver the results.
Within five minutes the doctor was back, holding the
film. "Mr. Mulder, I see at least two hairline
fractures in your foot. There may be more but the
swelling is so intense it's difficult to tell. I'm
going to put you in a light cast until you can get to
a specialist. You'll need to use crutches until
you're seen by the orthopedic doctor. It's not a
walking cast," he emphasized.
"Yeah, okay," Mulder agreed, then dozed off again.
The doctor laughed and turned to Scully. "You can
fill him in when he sobers up."
Shortly before 5 o'clock, Scully helped Mulder into
his apartment. He headed for the couch while Scully
surveyed the trail of clothes that started at the
door and continued through the apartment. She came
to her senses and told Mulder that he needed to be in
"Scully, this is my bed."
"Okaaay," she answered, drawing out the word, a look
of disbelief on her face. "Do you have any extra
"Hall closet," he directed.
Scully turned to get them as her cell phone rang.
Mulder heard several yes sirs and no sirs and then he
heard his partner explaining his condition. He
raised up on his elbows and heard her close the
conversation with, "I'll tell him, sir."
"That was the OPR board. They've been trying to
reach you all afternoon."
"Yeah, I left my cell in the charger. Didn't think
I'd need it. How long do I have to clean out my
desk?" he asked, the sarcasm quite evident in his
"You don't have to. You're expected back at the
office as soon as your doctor releases you," Scully
"I must be more out of it than I thought. Did I hear
you say that I still have a job?"
"That's right, Mulder. No repercussions. Carry on
as before," she called to him as she rummaged around
in his closet. She finally located the pillows and
put them under Mulder's right leg. "You need to keep
your foot elevated. Do you have plenty of food and
"I don't remember what I have, to tell the truth," he
sighed as he tried to get comfortable.
"I'll take a look," Scully offered and went into the
He could hear her opening and closing cabinets and
drawers. After a few minutes Scully returned, a look
of disgust on her face.
"Mulder, your refrigerator should be declared a toxic
"You don't like my science projects?" he quipped.
"I think some of those growths may be older than I
am. Other than the green and gray stuff, I found a
box of crackers, a can of tuna and an opened carton
of orange juice that expired two weeks ago," she
"I'm doing better than I thought." He tried to laugh
but it ended in a groan as he accidentally wiggled
the toes on his sore foot.
"Mulder, would you like for me to go to the pharmacy
and get your prescription for painkillers filled? I
could stop and pick up a few things from the grocery
on my way back."
"Scully, I've put you out enough these past few days.
If you could just drop off the prescription at the
pharmacy, they'll deliver it. I can call the corner
market for supplies. They deliver too."
"I don't mind, Mulder."
"Thanks, Scully, but I think I can manage."
"Well, if you're sure."
"Scully, I'm sure." He pulled the prescription from
his shirt pocket and held it out for her. "I'm just
going to lie here and watch a little TV."
"All right, Mulder. I'll drop this off." She looked
around until she found his phone. She put it on the
coffee table, within easy reach. "You be sure to
call in that food order. I'll stop by before I go to
the office in the morning."
"Scully, that's not necessary."
"Mulder, I don't want to hear it. Expect me by 7:30.
"Now, just let me put your crutches along side the
couch and I'm out of here."
"Thanks for putting up with me today. I appreciate
"Not a problem, Mulder. Call me if you need me and
get some food in here."
He nodded and she left, the door closing with a sharp
Mulder laid back and started thinking of what
groceries he should order from the corner mart when a
thought occurred to him. Once the groceries were
delivered, how would he put them away? No way would
it work on crutches. He could hop but he still had
enough Demerol in his system that he would probably
fall. Screw it! He would just order a pizza and a
two liter. Scully would be pissed but he would just
have to give into her and let her get the damned
Thinking seemed to make his foot hurt even more.
Where was that pharmacy delivery? In answer to his
thought, there was a knock on the door. He grabbed
his crutches and hobbled to the door. He was so
happy to see the delivery boy that he was tempted to
hug him, but gave him a ten dollar tip instead.
He took his treasured bag from the pharmacy into the
kitchen and searched for a clean glass. He found one
and filled it with tap water. Without even reading
the directions he popped two tablets in his mouth and
washed them down with a full glass of water. The
medications he'd received at the hospital had really
made his mouth dry, so he filled the glass again and
drank that too. He filled it one last time and set
it in the refrigerator to get cold.
Mulder made his way back to the couch and propped his
foot up. He grabbed the remote and started surfing
the channels. Soon the welcomed pain medication took
effect and the remote dropped from his hand as he
began to snore.
Shortly after 2AM his bladder reminded him of all the
water he had guzzled earlier. The pain pills had
worn off and he really didn't feel like moving but
his bladder was insistent.
"Crap!" he exclaimed and began the process of moving
from the couch. "These crutches are a damned
nuisance!" They hurt his hands and arm pits too. He
hoped the doctor put him in a walking cast.
He hobbled to the bathroom and took care of business,
propping the crutches beside the toilet. They
promptly slid to the floor and he had to balance
precariously on his left foot to retrieve them,
almost giving himself a swirly in the process.
After washing his hands he decided it was time for
another dose of pain medication. He inched his way
to the kitchen, looking forward to the water he had
chilled earlier. Feeling better after downing two
more pills and the frosty glass of water, he began
his journey back to the couch.
The trail of clothes he'd left earlier was still
lying there waiting to be put in the laundry hamper.
Mulder had avoided them earlier but on this trip
through they were waiting in ambush. His right
crutch got tangled in his jacket and before he could
say son of a bitch, he was on the floor, staring at
"I've fallen and I can't get up," he giggled as the
pain medication coursed through his system. Scully
would be there in a few hours and it seemed as good a
place as any to take a nap. He closed his eyes and
was soon dreaming of Scully delivering his groceries
in a red teddy and black stiletto heels.
When Mulder next opened his eyes, he was staring at a
pair of shapely ankles encased in a pair of
reasonable pumps. The stiletto heels of his dream
disappeared quickly as his vision moved upward to
take in his partner with a very concerned look on her
"Mulder, what happened? Are you all right?" Scully
asked, kneeling down beside him.
"Guess I fell," he explained sheepishly. "Too tired
to get up."
"Here, let me help you sit up," Scully offered as he
struggled to his elbows.
Mulder held on for dear life as a wave of dizziness
washed over him. "I guess I'm feeling a little
weak," he explained as he sank back into her arms.
"Okay, just rest for a minute. We'll take this one
step at a time. Did you get any orange juice with
"I didn't call," he moaned, knowing he was soon going
to be the recipient of a lecture of major
"Mulder!" she exclaimed. "No wonder you're weak.
You haven't eaten in over 24 hours. Let's get you
back to the couch and I'll see about getting you
something to eat."
Slowly but surely Scully got Mulder up and over to
"I saw a convenience store up the street. I'm going
to get you some orange juice to get your sugar level
back up. I'll see if they have some muffins or
something then I'll be right back. Be thinking of
what you want from the grocery store while I'm gone,
then we'll get you some food in here."
"Scully, you'll be late for work," he protested.
"No, I won't. I'm not going. I'm helping a sick
friend," she smiled. "I'll be right back."
Scully made her way out to her car. She was glad
that Mulder had forgotten to lock his door, otherwise
he could have been lying there for quite a while.
She hated to miss work but he obviously needed some
assistance. His apartment was a mess. She'd
probably need to do laundry and she needed to get
Mulder to clean himself up. She made a mental list
of the things she thought needed to be done. It was
going to be a busy day. She glanced in the back
seat. Good, her workout clothes were still there.
This looked like a job that might require a t-shirt
An hour later Mulder was fed and the clothes picked
up from the floor. Just as she suspected, his
laundry hamper was overflowing. Scully had just
called in an order to the corner mart and the next
thing on her list of things to do was to get Mulder
to clean himself up.
"Mulder, why don't you get yourself cleaned up so I
can take your dirty clothes to the laundromat?"
"Scully, you don't have to do my laundry."
"It looks to me like you could stand to wash a few
things. Your laundry hamper is running over."
"That's its normal state," he quipped. "I still have
a few pieces of clean clothing around here."
"Where do you keep your towels and washcloths?" she
"Under the sink in the bathroom."
Scully left and he could hear her rummaging around
under the sink.
"Mulder, you have one clean towel, which you are
about to use."
"I could always buy some more," he offered.
"And I could also do your laundry," she said firmly.
"All right, all right. There's a laundry room
downstairs. You don't have to go out," he gave in.
"Good. Now, tell me if you have any sweats that are
"I think so. I'll get them, but how am I supposed to
shower in this cast?"
"You don't. You sit on the toilet and fill the sink
up with warm, soapy water and wash yourself that way.
No shower until you're steady on your feet, and then
you'll have to cover that cast in plastic."
"Okay, I guess," he sighed.
"Good. If you can manage it, get some clean clothes
and take them into the bathroom with you. Throw out
the dirty ones and I'll start to sort your things."
Mulder got up and made his way to his seldom-used
bedroom. Although it was difficult to move around
the clutter, he soon had his clothes and was in the
bathroom preparing to wash hisself. He sat on the
toilet and began undressing. He really appreciated
Scully's help, but things were starting to get
intimate. She was going to be sorting through his
dirty underwear! "Oh well, in for a penny in for a
pound," he thought as he threw his dirty clothes out
By mid-afternoon Mulder felt like he was the king of
the world. He actually had food and drink and Scully
had ordered some things that could be handled easily
while on crutches. She had also prepared snacks and
meals with that in mind.
His laundry was finished and folded and Scully had
even offered to drop off his dry cleaning. The
bathroom had been cleaned and mopped and Scully was
working on the kitchen.
Mulder was intently examining the varying shades of
blue and purple on his toes when Scully came in and
dropped down into his desk chair.
"I think the kitchen and bathroom would pass a white
glove test," she declared, pushing an errant strand
of hair behind her ear.
"Scully, you know how much I appreciate this, but you
know you didn't have to do it."
"I know that, Mulder," she replied.
"I'd like to pay you back somehow. How about I take
you out for a nice dinner whenever I get off these
"Mulder, you really don't have to do anything, but if
you insist . . ."
"Anything, Scully," he promised
"How about letting me choose the radio station for
the next month?"
"Aaargh!" Mulder thought as he smiled sweetly at her.
"A month of news-talk radio or classical music," he
groaned inwardly as he shook his head in agreement.
"That was too easy," Scully thought as she got to her
feet. "Mulder, I think you're all set now. Your
pain medication is on the coffee table along with the
phone and the remote. Is your cell phone handy?"
"In my pocket," Mulder answered, unzipping the back
pocket on his sweats and pulling out the phone.
"Good. Keep it with you in case you find yourself on
the floor again. You have a cooler full of ice and
drinks on the floor beside the couch. Your dinner is
in the fridge and I put some snacks on the counter.
I laid out some clean clothes and a towel and
washcloth in the bathroom. You shouldn't have to
carry too much after I leave. I'll bring breakfast
on my way to work and I'll be back in plenty of time
to take you to your 2:30 doctor appointment. Let's
see. Did I forget anything?"
"Scully, are you sure a month of radio choice is
enough?" he asked as he realized all that she had
"Probably not. I'll let you take me to dinner too,"
"Mulder, that's enough!" she exclaimed. "That's what
friends are for."
Mulder realized it had been a long time since he had
a real friend. He had quite a few acquaintances, but
very few that would count as a friend.
"Thanks friend," he said solemnly, then broke into a
grin as he saw the wide smile on Scully's face.
"I'll be waiting for you in the morning."
Scully paused and tried to think of the last time a
friend was that eager to see her again. It had been
too long. "Great. I'll be here by 7:30. Oh, and
Mulder, you know my number. Call me if you need me."
Scully made her way to the door as Mulder agreed to
As she left, Mulder felt the emptiness in the room.
He lay back on the couch and thought about the last
24 hours. The pain in his foot was excruiciating at
times, but it was worth it. He had just added a new
word to his personal dictionary-friend-and it had
Dana Scully's picture next to it.
"Nice," he thought as he closed his eyes, feeling
safe and content for the first time in a long time.
"Very nice," he smiled, and thought of his new
Note: In the original I referred to an episode that
hadn't been aired yet. It was a major error
and I was surprised that no one caught it. It hit
me in the face when I watched "Fallen Angel"
again last week, and I couldn't rest until I
corrected it. Please accept my apology for
making this mistake, even after checking the
order of the Season One eps. I think it's
time for a new pair of glasses.