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All The Kings Horses
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Title:  All The King's Horses
                           Author:  Waddles52
                           Rating:  PG 13
                           Category: MT
                           Summary:  Mulder has a really rotten day with a 
                           series of minor but embarrassing injuries.  
                           Disclaimer:  Not mine.  Used without permission for 
                           my enjoyment and yours too, I hope.
                           Note:  Written for the November Fic Challenge at 
                           Mulder's Refuge.  Thanks to Super Beta Lisa for her 
                           usual quick and thorough work.
                           
                           
                           
                           
                           After quieting the third assault on his eardrums in 
                           the past half hour, a tired hand threw the covers 
                           back even though its owner desperately craved more 
                           sleep.  However, the alarm clock didn't lie.  It was 
                           time to get up and dress for work.
                           
                           Fox Mulder glanced at the offending timepiece with 
                           blurry eyes.  At the same time he wished he were a 
                           drinker.  At least then he'd have an excuse for the 
                           vise-like pain enveloping his head.
                           
                           Most people would just call in sick, but the higher-
                           ups in the FBI tended to frown on that, especially on 
                           the day of the quarterly review.  While Skinner most 
                           definitely would not crack a smile, his partner Dana 
                           Scully would most likely maim him for life.
                           
                           After spending hours over the past few days 
                           accounting for every mile flown or driven, every 
                           penny spent for food, lodging or fuel, and every 
                           criminal incarcerated as a result of their 
                           investigations, Special Agent Fox Mulder's attendance 
                           was not only expected, it was mandatory.
                           
                           The coffee pot in the kitchen clicked on and started 
                           its repertoire of slurps and groans, sending even 
                           sharper pain signals to his sore head.  Mulder 
                           flipped the light switch in the bathroom and opened 
                           the medicine cabinet hoping to find relief in a 
                           little green bottle.  Bingo!  The Excedrin Migraine 
                           was right where he'd left it the last time his head 
                           threatened to explode.  Trembling fingers struggled 
                           with the childproof cap as tired eyes watched the 
                           only two tablets in the bottle roll down the drain 
                           after the cover finally yielded.
                           
                           His mouth spouting expletives far too early in the 
                           morning, Mulder made his way to the toolbox he kept 
                           in the closet.  By hook or by crook those headache 
                           tablets would soon find their way to his stomach to 
                           ease his pain.
                           
                           A few minutes later the trap had been taken apart and 
                           the treasure rested in the palm of his right hand.  
                           As he rose up to exit the dark underworld beneath the 
                           sink, his head once again exploded in pain 
                           accompanied by a brilliant fireworks display when his 
                           cranium connected with the sink.
                           
                           If he could have seen past the sparkling lights in 
                           his field of vision, Mulder would have noticed the 
                           air turning blue as he let loose another string of 
                           offensive words.  What did he care?  The instruments 
                           of his relief were gripped tightly in his right hand.
                           
                           Just as he swallowed the precious tablets, the agent 
                           heard a plink and the bathroom was thrown into 
                           darkness.
                           
                           "Of all times for a light bulb to go out," he groaned 
                           as he made his way back to the closet to get a new 
                           one.
                           
                           Flipping the lid down on the toilet, Mulder climbed 
                           up to change the light bulb.  He noticed that the 
                           seat was loose and made a mental note to fix it over 
                           the weekend.  Just as he gave the bulb a final turn, 
                           the seat wobbled sending the unsteady agent flying 
                           into the wall.  He heard a sharp crack as soft-tissue 
                           met unyielding plaster.
                           
                           "At least I landed on my feet," he thought as he 
                           rubbed the ugly looking bruise that was forming.  The 
                           shoulder pain did serve the purpose of taking his 
                           mind off the now full-blown migraine.
                           
                           Downing a cup of coffee as he showered, shaved and 
                           dressed, Mulder began to feel more like he could face 
                           the day.  With one last check to make sure he had his 
                           keys and wallet, he took the steps to the ground 
                           floor.  With the way his morning had already unfolded 
                           there was no sense in taking the unpredictable 
                           elevator.
                           
                           After settling himself behind the wheel of his car he 
                           turned the key and was greeted with the sound of 
                           silence.  He muttered poisonously under his breath 
                           and popped the hood latch.  He wanted to determine if 
                           the battery cables were clean and in place and they 
                           would have been if someone hadn't taken the battery.  
                           The special agent slammed the hood down and kicked 
                           the right front tire out of frustration over the fact 
                           that he forgot to lock his car.  Limping heavily, he 
                           went back to his apartment to call a cab.  Was it too 
                           early in the day to have a nervous breakdown?
                           
                           Fortunately, the cab arrived quickly and rush hour 
                           traffic was fairly light.  Mulder paid the driver as 
                           a heavy rain began to fall.
                           
                           Considering himself lucky to have missed most of the 
                           flooding rain, he made his way into the building.  
                           Despite all of his earlier mishaps, he had managed to 
                           arrive with time to spare.
                           
                           His long legs carried him the length of the lobby.  
                           The elevators were just in sight when he felt his 
                           feet begin to slide on the wet floor.  Before he 
                           could regain his balance, he found himself falling 
                           hard onto his ass.  For a second or two he felt 
                           nothing and then the pain hit along with the peculiar 
                           feeling of an electrical shock down his spine and 
                           legs.
                           
                           To make matters worse people who ordinarily wouldn't 
                           give him the time of day appeared, offering to help 
                           him up.  He grabbed the nearest hand and Agent Smith 
                           from white-collar crime helped him to his feet.  
                           After assuring everyone that he was fine he limped to 
                           the stairs.  The last thing he wanted was to put up 
                           with questions about his wellbeing while he waited 
                           for the lift.  This day just kept getting better.
                           
                           Mulder took the steps very slowly, giving in to the 
                           pain in his lower back.  At the same time his 
                           migraine decided to make an encore appearance.  
                           "Crap!"  The last word was forced from his mouth 
                           quite loudly as he missed the last step and landed on 
                           his tailbone once again.
                           
                           The pain took over for a few seconds and he was 
                           unaware of anything but the excruciating misery in 
                           his lower spine.  When it finally eased up enough for 
                           his other senses to return, he noted a familiar 
                           figure standing over him.
                           
                           "What the hell happened to you?"
                           
                           Ah, the voice of his partner.  Usually her vibes were 
                           akin to heavenly music to his ears.  Today her tone 
                           fit right in with the hellish morning he'd already 
                           experienced.  He gave her a pain-filled grimace.
                           
                           "What do you think happened to me?" he snapped.  His 
                           voice was anything but friendly.  "Do you think you 
                           could give me a hand here?"
                           
                           "I don't know.  Are you going to bite it off?"  
                           Scully sighed and helped him up, keeping her arm 
                           around his waist all the way to their office.  Once 
                           there she helped him remove his overcoat and cringed 
                           as he tried to sit in his chair.  
                           
                           When he had finally settled into the most comfortable 
                           position available to him at the moment she dared to 
                           speak.  "Having a rough day?"
                           
                           Mulder nodded yes making his head hurt a little more.
                           
                           "Care to fill me in?"
                           
                           Her partner managed to hit the highlights while 
                           trying to maneuver around the most embarrassing parts 
                           as Scully started the ritual that brought the 
                           coffeemaker to life.  All the while Scully listened 
                           intently, noting how miserable her partner looked.
                           
                           Scully felt duty-bound to examine his injuries and 
                           Mulder ignored her for the most part, supplying a 
                           groan here and there as she touched a particularly 
                           sore spot.  His attention was drawn back to her very 
                           quickly when he heard the words "tailbone" and "drop 
                           your pants."
                           
                           "My tailbone is fine.  No need to examine me," he 
                           countered, his face turning a lovely shade of red.  
                           Any other time that set of demands would have sent 
                           his imagination into overdrive and produced a leer 
                           but this morning he just gaped at her stupidly.
                           
                           "If it is so fine then why did I practically have to 
                           carry you in here?"
                           
                           "It was just a culmination of everything that 
                           happened this morning.  I'm a little sore but I'll 
                           live."
                           
                           His words didn't sound that assuring to Dana Scully.  
                           Before her sat a man who could whine all day over a 
                           mere paper cut and be back to work less than twenty-
                           four hours after a bullet wound.  She was sure he was 
                           hiding a fairly painful injury or two.
                           
                           "If you're so fine, you can find these files.  We may 
                           need them for the meeting and you've changed your 
                           filing system again."  Scully handed him a post-it 
                           with the names of several files.
                           
                           "Sure, no problem."  With a smug look on his face he 
                           attempted to rise from his chair.  He was halfway up 
                           when the pain hammered into his lower back and 
                           tailbone.  All of the air rushed from his lungs with 
                           the sudden explosion of pain.  Despite his best 
                           effort he couldn't move.
                           
                           Scully observed him with a knowing look.
                           
                           "Um, I think I'm stuck," he managed to gasp.
                           
                           "Well, I won't say I told you so."  Scully stepped 
                           back in to help him.  "Maybe you'll let me examine 
                           you now."
                           
                           With Herculean effort, Mulder managed to pull himself 
                           up and carefully walk to the file cabinet.  "And 
                           maybe I won't."
                           
                           The look of triumph on his face lasted until he had 
                           to squat to reach the last file in the bottom drawer.
                           
                           She hated to see him in pain, could almost feel it on 
                           his behalf, but Scully decided it would be best not 
                           to interfere.  Sometimes Mulder had to discover 
                           things the hard way.
                           
                           Beads of perspiration appeared on his forehead as 
                           Mulder tried to complete his task.  He finally gave 
                           up and laid his arms on top of the file cabinet, 
                           resting his head on them.  "Scully, if they gave out 
                           awards for the shittiest morning, I would win hands 
                           down."  He took a deep breath and filled her in on 
                           everything that had transpired since he got out of 
                           bed.  She helped him move gingerly toward his desk as 
                           he recounted every embarrassing detail.
                           
                           He flinched in pain as Scully found the evidence of 
                           his collision with the sink top.  She checked his 
                           pupils for signs of concussion.  "That's quite a 
                           goose egg you've got.  You probably need to put some 
                           ice on it."
                           
                           Mulder groaned in response.
                           
                           "You need to have that tailbone examined."  She held 
                           up her hand to block her partner's response.  "You 
                           need to get an x-ray to make sure there's no bone 
                           displacement."
                           
                           "This is embarrassing, Scully," he sighed, leaning 
                           heavily against his desk.  "Besides, we have that 
                           meeting with Skinner."
                           
                           "I'm sure he can juggle his schedule and see us 
                           later.  I don't think you could sit through a meeting 
                           right now."
                           
                           Scully picked up the phone and explained the 
                           situation to Skinner's secretary.  After a few more 
                           words she replaced the receiver.  "It's not a 
                           problem, Mulder.  Skinner is re-scheduling all of his 
                           appointments.  He woke up with a migraine and called 
                           in sick."
                           
                           While he was generally sympathetic to the plight of 
                           others, at that moment Mulder felt like calling 
                           Skinner at home and demanding his presence.  By 
                           golly, he'd made it in and anyone in the same 
                           condition should do likewise.  Since he usually 
                           enjoyed his job he opted to mutter, "I can't believe 
                           this."  Then he turned and vomited into the 
                           wastebasket.
                           
                           xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
                           
                           A few hours later Mulder was declared the owner of a 
                           non-displaced fracture of the coccyx.  Nothing could 
                           be done but go home to lie on his stomach or side and 
                           take the strong painkillers that the doctor had 
                           prescribed.  After downing two of them as soon as 
                           Scully pulled out of the drugstore parking lot, the 
                           battered agent began to get over his embarrassment.
                           
                           After all, it was just another bone in a long string 
                           of fractures and he had earned it honestly, if not 
                           heroically.  He would remind himself of those facts 
                           every time he considered sitting down on the light 
                           blue, inflatable plastic do-nut that would be his 
                           constant companion for the next few weeks.
                           
                           Scully had managed with great difficulty and a lot of 
                           swearing from him to get him up to his apartment and 
                           on the bed.  She suppressed a chuckle as she blew 
                           into the blue ring in order to inflate it.
                           
                           Ah, Scully.  If he didn't already love her with every 
                           ounce of his being, this whole episode would have led 
                           him to that conclusion.  While she could have teased 
                           and embarrassed him, she took his pain seriously.  He 
                           could forgive the slight giggle while blowing up that 
                           stupid cushion.  It did look funny.
                           
                           Once he was situated on his stomach and as 
                           comfortable as possible, she brought him an ice pack 
                           and placed it gently on his sore bottom.  Her offer 
                           to stay and look after him for the next few days was 
                           quickly accepted.
                           
                           The pain pills did their job and made him so sleepy 
                           that he began to forget the torture of his injuries.  
                           As his eyes closed he began to recite something so 
                           softly that Scully just caught the tail end of it.  
                           "All the kings' horses and all the king's men 
                           couldn't put Humpty together again."
                           
                           He drifted off to sleep knowing that if his partner 
                           had taken care of Humpty Dumpty he would have been 
                           back together again in no time.
                           
                           The End