Title: To Oz and Beyond
Summary: Mother Nature seems to have it in for
Mulder and Scully. Will they make it out of Kansas
Category: MSR, MT
Disclaimer: Just for fun. Not for profit.
Archives: If you want it, you've got it. Just let
Acknowledgements: Thanks to Lisa who pulled this out
of the doldrums.
Feedback: Would be very much appreciated at
Author's notes: I am not an expert on medical
procedures by any means. I ask your forgiveness in
advance for any mistakes. Thanks to Gail for the
"I hate these assignments in the middle of nowhere,"
Mulder groaned as he tried to stretch his long legs
in the rental Taurus.
"I agree, especially when it turns out to be a big
waste of time," Scully answered as she maneuvered the
road ahead, seemingly miles and miles of the flattest
land Kansas had to offer.
"At least you can't blame this one on me," Mulder
reminded her as he too stared ahead.
"I think Skinner is paying us back for some of the
trouble he thinks we've caused him in the past."
"Trouble? You and me? Never. We're the poster boy
and girl for the F.B.I."
Scully snorted. "More than likely they would like to
plaster our posters on the most wanted display in the
lobby. Drat!" she exclaimed as big, fat rain drops
began to hit the dusty windshield.
"That storm has been brewing behind us for the last
half hour. I was hoping we'd reach civilization
before it broke."
Scully looked in her side-view mirror. "It's really
starting to look bad. Looks like it's going to be a
real gully washer."
A strong gust of wind shook the car as the rain
increased in intensity.
"It looks like it might be a severe storm, Scully.
I'm going to see if there's a weather update on the
Mulder tried to find a near-by station but was only
rewarded with static for his effort.
"We really are in the middle of nowhere," he sighed.
"Yes, I haven't even seen a farmhouse for the last
ten miles," Scully agreed, looking in the mirror
again. "I don't like the looks of those clouds. We
really need to find shelter."
Mulder turned around in his seat to get a better look
as hail began to crash into the windshield.
"We've got hail," Scully reported.
"Why do I feel like I'm in the middle of a movie?"
Mulder replied as he observed the black clouds
rolling. "Scully, we really need to find someplace
safe to stop. I don't think we're going to outrun
"I'm open for suggestions."
"Right now I'd settle for a nice, deep ditch," Mulder
said as he observed a dark cloud reach the ground and
begin twisting its way toward them.
Scully looked in the mirror again. "Mulder, is that
what I think it is?"
"If you're thinking tornado, it's what you think it
Scully floored the gas pedal. "What should we do?"
"We've got to find some kind of shelter, or at least
a ditch or a decent-sized depression because that
thing is heading this way fast!"
"Between the rain and the hail, I can hardly see."
"Just keep going as fast as you can and be ready to
get out and run like hell when I tell you!" Mulder
exclaimed as the dancing, whirling cloud grew ever
closer. "Any signs of a house or a building on your
"No. I just saw a sign by the road, but the wind
blew it away before I could tell what it said."
"Maybe we're getting close to a town."
Mulder continued to divide his attention between the
funnel cloud and the roadside. He spotted a ditch,
or maybe it was a dry creek bed. Whatever it was, it
looked like their only hope.
"Scully, stop the car and head for that ditch!"
Scully slowed the car. "That doesn't look like it
would provide very much protection. Wouldn't it be
wiser to keep driving?"
"I'll leave it up to you, but hurry up and decide
because that thing will be over us in another minute
Scully looked ahead and then back over her shoulder
as she brought the car to a stop. "Let's go,
They both left the car and ran for all they were
worth. The hailstones stung when they hit the
exposed areas of their bodies and the swirling rain
and dust added insult to injury. Mulder pushed
Scully into the ditch as the full fury of the storm
Scully found it difficult to breath as the air was
literally sucked from her lungs. The weight of
Mulder's body was the only thing keeping her on the
ground as the wind dragged them along the depression.
Debris rained all around them and Scully heard a yelp
of pain as something hit Mulder.
It seemed like the onslaught lasted for hours but in
reality it was over in a minute. Scully raised her
head as the wind diminished and she observed the
twister travel another half mile, then lift up and
disappear before her eyes.
"Mulder, get off," she said as she tried to get up.
Mulder moaned and rolled off of her onto his left
side. "You okay?"
"I think so. Sore and muddy, but I'm okay. How are
you?" she asked as she sat up and looked at him.
"I think everything that wasn't tied down hit my
body." He tried to get up, but thought better of it
and sank back to the ground.
"Where are you hurt?"
"Any place more than others?"
"My back and my leg."
Scully maneuvered around so she could get a better
look at his back, wiping the rain from her eyes as
she moved. They were engulfed in a torrential
downpour that was growing colder by the minute. She
shivered as she knelt by Mulder's side, her breath
catching in her throat as she surveyed the damage.
The clothes on his back were muddy and shredded. He
was bruised almost every place that she could see,
but what really grabbed her attention was the piece
of metal impaled in his lower back. She forced her
eyes to move down to his legs and found a piece of
wood embedded in his right leg.
"Oh, Mulder. You weren't kidding were you?"
"I never kid about this much pain," he gasped. "So,
what's the verdict, Doc?"
"Well, it looks like some of the debris used you for
"We need to get you some medical attention."
"There's something stuck in my back, right?" he
asked, struggling to get the words out through the
"Yes, there is," Scully sighed. "And in your leg
"Yank it out!"
"Mulder, I can't do that. You're loosing enough
blood as it is. I can't take the chance of causing
"Shit, Scully! It hurts!"
"I know. We have to get you out of here and get some
"The car?" Mulder asked.
Scully wiped the rain from her eyes once again and
prepared to search for the car. To her surprise it
was right where they had left it, covered in mud, but
"I don't believe this," she muttered under her
breath. "Mulder, I think the car is okay. I'm going
to check it out and get the first-aid kit. Don't try
to move. I'll be right back."
Scully slogged through the mud, almost losing a shoe
in the gooey mess. As she reached the car, she
breathed a sigh of relief. Other than being covered
with mud and grass the car was untouched.
Her relief was quickly replaced with anger and guilt.
"Damn it! If I had decided to stay in the car Mulder
would be all right!"
She surveyed the road ahead and once again her anger
surged. The twister had apparently stayed off of the
road. It was fairly clear as far as she could see.
She shook her head. "It's almost as if that damned
tornado followed us."
Shaking off her anger, Scully retrieved the first-aid
kit from the trunk. She spotted a blue tarp folded
up in the very back of the trunk. She practically
had to crawl in the trunk to retrieve it, but she
soon had it tucked under her left arm. Carrying the
first-aid kit with her right hand, she made her way
back through the mud to Mulder.
He was lying exactly as she had left him. For a
moment she was afraid that she had taken too long
until she saw his right arm move ever so slightly.
"Thank God," she breathed in relief.
"I'm here, Mulder," Scully announced, kneeling beside
him in the mud. She reached into the first-aid kit
for a roll of gauze and antiseptic. "I'm going to
wrap this around that piece of wood in your leg to
try to keep it from moving. First, I'm going to pour
some antiseptic over the wound."
She flipped the top on the bottle of Betadine in her
left hand. "This is going to feel pretty
uncomfortable but try not to move. I'll go as fast
as I can."
"Okay, just get it over with," he grunted as the
solution hit his skin.
She quickly stabilized the piece of wood then tried
to decide what to do with the metal in his back.
"Mulder, the only way I can wrap this is to sit you
up. Think you can make it?"
"Sure, Scully. Just give me a hand up."
Between the two of them Mulder managed to sit,
leaning heavily on his left arm.
"Okay, same as before, antiseptic, then bandage.
Mulder nodded and she began to work. Mulder bit his
bottom lip as the stinging sensation grew. He took a
deep breath and determined he wouldn't make a sound,
the rain hiding the tears of pain as they slid down
his face. By the time Scully finished he was
breathing heavily, trying to hold onto consciousness.
"Rest for a minute," Scully directed as she began to
wrap the tarp around his shoulders.
As his breathing slowed down, Mulder became more
aware of his surroundings, especially Scully. She
was rubbing a large bruise on her left ankle, and was
sporting a smaller bruise on her left cheek.
"Scully, are you sure you're all right?"
"Mulder, I'm fine," she replied with her stock
"Then, what's this?" he asked, tenderly brushing her
"I didn't say I came through unscathed, Mulder. I
have a few scrapes and bruises, but I am fine," she
emphasized. "The car is also fine. The tornado
didn't touch it. If I had decided to keep driving
we'd still be on the road and you would be unharmed."
"Don't accept the blame for this, Scully. I pushed
you into making a decision and it was the right one.
We didn't know what that thing was going to do," he
soothed as he gave her a quick hug, the best that he
could manage under the circumstances.
Scully leaned into him briefly then took charge
again. "The road was clear as far as I could see.
We just have to get you to the car and get you to a
"I don't suppose you could bring the car here?"
Scully shook her head. "Sorry. Too muddy."
Mulder sighed and shook his head to get the rain out
of his eyes. "Let's go then."
Mulder stood with Scully's help. He swayed as his
vision wavered and his ears buzzed. "Give me a
minute, Scully," he gasped, swallowing quickly in an
effort to keep his stomach contents where they
"Take all the time you need. Do you need to sit down
"No! If I do I'm afraid I won't be able to get back
up," he groaned, fighting off the dizziness. "Just
hold onto me."
After a few minutes he indicated that he was ready to
move. Scully held onto him while he hobbled a few
steps, then stopped. "I need to rest," he gasped, as
he sagged against her.
Scully eased him down. "Mulder, as much as I hate to
do this, I'm going to have to leave you here and try
to find some help."
"No, Scully! Let me rest and then we'll try again."
She could see the fear and pain in his eyes. She too
feared leaving him. "Okay, we'll rest a few minutes
then try it again." She pulled the tarp around him
more closely as he shivered against the cold rain.
Scully looked back to the car, an impossible distance
away, but something had changed. A police cruiser
with lights flashing had pulled up behind it. An
officer opened the door and got out, bracing himself
against the wind and rain. "Do you people need some
help?" he shouted.
Scully waved her arms and nodded as Mulder slumped
against her, unconscious.
At the officer's call, an ambulance arrived and in
short order Mulder was loaded and on his way to the
hospital, Scully following behind.
She marveled at what the officer had told her. The
small tornado had done little damage, mostly tearing
up the countryside and destroying a few signs and
fences. Mulder's was the only injury reported so
They were only a few miles from town and reached the
small hospital quickly. Scully parked the car and
hurried in to check on her partner, only to be
ambushed by the admitting department. After signing
the usual forms she was taken to the doctor's lounge
where she was encouraged to take a shower and put on
a set of scrubs provided for her. A cup of hot
coffee was pushed into her hands when she emerged and
she followed the nurse who was waiting to take her to
the small surgical waiting room.
She settled in for the long wait, praying that her
partner would survive this latest assault on his
body. She thought to call Skinner, but decided to
wait until she had some idea of Mulder's condition.
Restless, she took her coffee and walked to the
window. A flash of lightning greeted her as she
stared out the rain-streaked glass. The doctor found
her there an hour later.
"Are you with Mr. Mulder?"
"Oh, yes. How is he"?" Scully asked, turning around.
"He's doing remarkably well, actually."
"Let's go over here and have a seat," the doctor
suggested. "I'm Dr. Haus, by the way."
"I understand you're both F.B.I. agents?"
"Yes, we are. What can you tell me about Agent
"Well, I'm happy to report that they weren't as
severe as we originally thought. The injury to his
leg missed the nerves and the main artery that runs
through the leg. It was mainly a job of cleaning the
wound and repairing the muscle. The back injury was
a bit more complicated. The metal did leave a small
laceration on his right kidney, but we were able to
repair that and baring complications he should be
"Thank you, Doctor. When will I be able to see him?"
"We're keeping him in the I.C.U. overnight. He lost
quite a bit of blood and I want him monitored
carefully for the next 12 hours or so. Why don't you
give him an hour or so to get settled in, then you
can see him for a few minutes."
"All right, but his prognosis is good?"
"He's fit and healthy. He should be fine. Why don't
you get something to eat, make any phone calls you
might need to make and I'll let them know to expect
you in the I.C.U. in about an hour"
"If you have any questions, I'll be around all
After the doctor left, Scully decided it was time to
let Skinner know that they would be staying in Kansas
for a while longer.
Skinner was quite surprised when he learned the
circumstances of their delay, assuring Scully that
there wouldn't be a problem if she stayed with Mulder
until he was ready to travel.
After a sandwich that tasted like cardboard and a cup
of tea that wasn't much better, she decided it was
time to go to the I.C.U. to check on her partner.
She got off the elevator on the second floor and
paused to look out the window. It appeared that the
area was being assaulted by a storm once again. A
flash of lightning illuminated the parking lot as a
crash of thunder shook the building. A gust of wind
rattled the window as she noticed the busy nurses in
the intensive care unit go about their business as
She thought of the whirlwind of their own lives and
the times they had to go about their business as
usual even as their world crashed around them. She
shook it off and walked to the desk to ask for
Mulder appeared to be sleeping, lying on his left
side. She walked over to him and kissed him on his
"I don't think we're in Kansas any more, Toto," he
quipped and slowly opened his eyes.
"Sorry, Mulder, but we are still in Kansas. How are
"Like the wicked witch that the house landed on."
"You're going to be fine, Mulder. You need to rest
"Just a little sore and scraped up. You shielded me
from the worst of it."
A nurse came in and busied herself checking the
monitors and IV pump. "I've got some pain medication
and a sedative for Mr. Mulder. Dr. Haus wants him to
"Mulder, I think that's my cue to leave."
Mulder reached for her hand. "You get some rest too,
The nurse injected the medication into the IV port.
"Give him a kiss now because this stuff acts pretty
Scully looked surprised but bent over and kissed
Mulder's waiting lips. She squeezed his hand and
turned to leave, looking over her shoulder as she
reached the door. Mulder was already asleep, a smile
on his face."
Scully decided since Mulder's condition was stable
and he would be sleeping for a while, it would be a
good time to find a motel and check in. There was
only one available, an old motor court. After
checking in she took a more thorough shower and
changed into some comfortable casual clothes and
sneakers. She decided to go back to the hospital and
see if Mulder was awake yet.
A representative from the Dodge City field office was
waiting for her in the I.C.U. waiting room. "Agent
Scully, I'm Agent Mike Seldon from the Dodge City
field office. AD Skinner called us and since I was
in the area already, I was asked to take an incident
report and provide any assistance you might need."
"Thank you, Agent Seldon. I'll be happy to talk to
you later, but it's time for another visitation
period. I would really like to see Agent Mulder."
"Of course. I'll be waiting for you here. Please
give Agent Mulder my wishes for a speedy recovery."
"Thank you. I will."
Scully found Mulder still sleeping as she entered his
room. A nurse was at his side making her check of
all the monitors. "Hello Agent Scully. I'm just
checking things over. Agent Mulder has been sleeping
ever since you left. His vitals have remained stable
"I'm glad to hear that."
"I'm just getting ready to turn him onto his back."
"I can help you if you'd like," Scully volunteered.
"I'll take any help I can get," the nurse smiled.
"This might cause him some pain so I'm prepared to
give him some more pain medication. Agent Mulder
will probably be transferred up to the third floor
within the next few hours, but we don't want him to
have bad memories of his time here. I'm going to
move him now. If you could keep that pillow steady
under his leg, I believe I can do the rest."
Working together, they soon had Mulder settled in a
new position. He moaned a few times but gave no
signs of waking.
"I'll leave you two alone. You can stay ten more
"Thank you," Scully answered as the nurse left.
"Is she gone now?" Mulder asked, opening his eyes.
"Mulder, how long have you been awake?"
"Ever since you started pulling on my leg, but I
wanted to see you so I decided to play possum. She
can shoot me full of pain killers after you leave."
"Mulder, she's going to catch on to the fact that
you're awake you know. Your heart rate and blood
pressure are up."
"Until then just stay here and let me look at you.
Did you find a place to stay?"
"I checked us into the Plainsman Inn. It's an older
place. Nothing fancy, but it's clean. There is a
tornado shelter right behind our room too."
"We could have used that earlier, but it's good to
keep in mind for your future safety."
"And yours too after your discharge. We might have
to stick around for a few days until you get your
strength back." She smoothed the hair back from his
forehead. "So how are you feeling now?"
"I was having the most wonderful, drug-induced sex
fantasy that I've ever dreamed and the next thing I
know someone is tugging on my leg and someone else is
rolling me over. I'd like to finish that dream," he
"Who was in your dream?"
"The person who's always in my sex fantasies."
"And that would be?"
"You Scully. Always you."
"Good answer, Mulder. Now, I want you to concentrate
on getting well so we can re-create some of those
fantasies of yours."
"As soon as you're better," Scully promised. She
gave him a kiss to seal the promise. As she
straightened up she saw the nurse heading toward his
room. "Mulder, I think you're busted."
"Hello, Mr. Mulder. I thought you might have been
playing possum so I decided to give you a few
minutes, but I've got to give you your medication
now. Dr. Haus wants you to get all the rest you can.
You lost a lot of blood."
"Could we have just a few more minutes, please?"
"Well . . ."
"It's official business. I need to talk to my
partner and then I'll be glad to rest."
"Okay, I'll give you three minutes."
"Thank you, nurse."
"I'll be back in three," she said. "Official
business my ass. Monkey business is more like it,"
she muttered under her breath as she left the room.
"What do you need to tell me, Mulder?" Scully asked,
taking his hand.
"That I love you and I want you to go back to the
motel and get some sleep. I don't want to see you
here for a few hours."
"Mulder . . ."
"If I'm not mistaken, I'm still head of the X-Files
and technically your superior . . ."
"Mulder, you're pushing it."
"I know, but I want you to rest, okay? I'll be fine.
The only thing you could do here would be to watch me
sleep. Please for me?"
"Okay, Mulder. You win. This time. There's an agent
from the Dodge City field office that I have to talk
to. After that I'll get something to eat and rest
for a while."
"That's my Scully. Kiss?"
She leaned in to kiss him. "Don't get used to
winning so easily, Mulder." She kissed him softly
and then again with a little more passion.
"Mmm, what do I get if I loose?"
"Oh, we'll have to see. Maybe a lot more of this,"
she answered, kissing him again.
"Might be worth throwing the game just to find out,"
"Mulder, behave." She straightened up as the nurse
came in. "I'll see you in a few hours."
"Bye, Scully," he said as his meds were injected into
his IV, and he was soon asleep.
To Oz and Beyond--Part 2
Disclaimers, etc in Part 1
Before Mulder even opened his eyes he sensed several
things. First, he knew that Scully had returned.
She was wearing his favorite perfume. Next, he
realized that his surroundings had changed. He
wasn't hooked up to as many monitors so he'd been
moved from the I.C.U. Finally, he knew that he and
Scully were not alone in the room. He could hear
Scully talking to a man, and was that a child's voice
that he heard? What the hell?
Mulder opened his eyes to find that he had been
correct on all accounts. He was in a semi-private
room. Scully was sitting in a chair between the beds
talking to a man in a suit, probably F.B.I. from the
look of him, and holding the hand of the little boy
in the next bed. Huh?
"Oh, Mulder! You're awake."
"Must've been some nap. I'm definitely not in Kansas
anymore," he grinned.
"Just a different location. Mulder, this is Mike
Seldon from the Dodge City field office."
"Glad you're doing better, Agent Mulder." Mike
Seldon stepped forward and shook Mulder's hand.
"And this is Robbie," Scully introduced. "He had his
appendix removed a little after you had your surgery.
His mommy gave him a new baby sister yesterday in
another hospital and his daddy has gone home to get a
little rest. Robbie's grandmother should be here
"Hi, Robbie. I'm Mulder, nice to meet you. How old
Robbie held up four fingers then ducked his head.
"Agent Scully, Agent Mulder, I'm going to go now.
I'll check in again before you're released."
"Thanks, Mike," Scully said.
Mulder nodded as Agent Seldon turned and left.
Robbie had decided to take a nap so Scully moved her
chair closer to Mulder.
"Wow, Scully. You're picking up guys all over the
place. First Mike and now Robbie. Aren't you Miss
Popularity?" he teased.
"What can I say, Mulder? When you've got it . . ."
"Do you think I might rate a little handholding,
maybe a little kiss?"
"Although you have some pretty stiff competition in
Robbie here, I might be able to spare one little
Scully leaned over and gave him a very big kiss and
took his left hand in hers.
"That's much better," Mulder sighed contentedly.
"So, what's up with the ankle biter?"
"Mulder, this is a fairly small hospital and they
don't have a pediatric ward. They are also
experiencing a staff shortage and have closed off
some rooms, so this was their solution."
Mulder nodded at her explanation.
"Now, how are you feeling? Are you thirsty? Do you
have any pain?"
"Oh no, Scully in MD mode," Mulder grinned. "Yes,
I'm thirsty. My back isn't bothering me too much but
my leg is throbbing to beat the band. Feels like the
bandages are too tight and sticking to my skin."
Scully poured some water and held the cup as he drank
his fill. When he was finished she put the cup back
on the nightstand and pulled the covers back. She
had to lift his gown to look at the bandages.
"Like what you see?"
"Mulder, you'll have to tone it down. There is a
small child present," she reminded him as she began
to examine the bandages.
"Ow! Okay, Okay. I'll play nice. Sheesh. Ow,
Scully! Are you trying to pull my skin off?"
"Sorry. You've got some drainage from the wound and
it's sticking to your skin. I'll give the nurse a
call and she can probably fix you up."
Scully adjusted his gown and pulled the covers back
"So, when's the foley come out? Soon, I hope."
"Well, you're producing urine, and there's no blood
in it that I can see, so you might get lucky."
"I'd say maybe tonight, or sometime tomorrow."
"That's not soon enough for me."
"It will just have to be," Scully replied as she
pushed the call button.
Mulder shifted uncomfortably and groaned at the pain
the movement caused.
"Mulder, a patient administered pain device is
attached to your IV. You know the drill. Push the
control button if you're hurting."
"Don't mind if I do," he said, taking the control
from her and pushing it. "Ah, Morphine?"
"Yes, you can tell?"
"Yeah, I get a warm, fuzzy feeling when it goes in.
By the way, did the weather ever clear up?"
"Not really. More severe weather is predicted."
"As long as it stays away from us."
The nurse came in and introduced herself. "I'm
Michelle, Agent Mulder. I'll be taking care of you
until midnight. What kind of problem are you having
with your bandages?"
Scully explained while Michelle made her own
inspection. She agreed with Scully and took off the
old ones and replaced them, wrapping an elastic
bandage around Mulder's leg to finish up.
Mulder took another hit from the IV pump and dozed
off rather quickly. Several hours later he was
awakened by a gentle shake of his shoulder.
"Mulder, you need to wake up," Scully said softly,
shaking his shoulder again.
"Just give me five more minutes," he groaned.
"I'm sorry, Mr. Mulder, but the doctor ordered blood
work every eight hours," the technician apologized.
"Every eight hours?" he griped, waking up more fully
as the technician began to search for the vein she
wanted to use.
"The doctor needs to monitor your kidney function and
check for infection," Scully explained. "He's just
"Tell him to be thorough with someone else. Ow!
What are you trying to do, hit the bone?"
The technician quickly finished her task and left the
room without comment.
Mulder looked over to find that Scully had returned
to Robbie's bedside to help him hold his glass of
"Grandma hasn't made it yet?"
"Her car broke down and Robbie's dad is at the other
hospital," Scully filled him in. "She's trying to
catch a ride, but she lives in the next county over
so it might be a while."
"I want my Granny," Robbie whimpered.
"Thanks, Mulder," Scully frowned.
"Sorry, I didn't know it was such a touchy subject.
Hey, buddy, how did you happen to end up here?"
"I got a bad tummy ache, but it's better now. Were
you really in a twister?"
"Yeah, we were. It went right over us."
"Dana said you pertected her."
"Yes, Robby. Mulder did protect me," Scully smiled,
emphasizing the proper pronunciation. "That's how he
"Did you have a oprashun too?"
"Yes, I had an oprashun too," Mulder answered,
deliberately mispronouncing the word. "Do you like
"Yeah! I like Spongebob!"
"You know, I do too. I don't know if he's on right
now, but let's see if we can find some cartoons on
Mulder grabbed the control and soon Robbie was
engrossed with the cartoons on TV.
Scully pulled her chair back over by Mulder who was
watching TV too. "What is that?" she inquired,
glancing at the TV.
"I don't have a clue, but the Robster seems to enjoy
Robbie was glued to the TV, clutching a stuffed
Spongebob in his arms.
"Feeling any better?"
"About the same."
"I brought your carry-on bag, Mulder. I made sure
you had a pair of sweats and some pajama bottoms, but
judging the thickness of that bandage you might just
want to slip your running shorts on when the foley
comes out. Although your bottom is delicious,
Robbie's granny may not appreciate a free shot."
"You just want to keep me all to yourself," he
"You got that right. Seriously, I think the nurses
planned on having you sit on the side of the bed
"I'm not looking forward to that," Mulder groaned.
"Just use your control button if it gets too bad."
"Don't worry. I will."
Robbie and Mulder had identical dinners of beef
broth, strawberry jello, ginger ale and weak tea.
They were eating their dessert, a cherry Popsicle,
when Michelle came in.
"Agent Mulder, I have some good news. Dr. Haus
reviewed your blood work and latest urinalysis and
was absolutely thrilled with the results. He gave
the okay to remove your foley with the understanding
that it goes back in if your condition should worsen.
You're very lucky to have it removed so quickly."
"Sounds like a plan to me," Mulder beamed.
"Great. You guys finish your Popsicles and I'll be
back with some help because we're going to let you
sit up for a little while."
"Uh, can we wait on that?"
"Mulder, the sooner you become mobile, the sooner you
get to leave the hospital. This is the first step,"
Scully explained as she wiped Robbie's face.
"Agent Scully is right. We'll just keep you up for a
few minutes the first time. I think a big, strapping
F.B.I. agent should be able to handle that, don't
you?" the nurse grinned.
"Bring it on, then," Mulder responded to her
"All right. See you in a few minutes. Robbie, how
are you doing?"
"Okay, but I gotta potty," he answered, ducking his
"I'll take him," Scully offered. "He can show Agent
Mulder what a big boy he is. He doesn't mind getting
up even with a sore tummy."
"Thanks. Call me if you need me," Michelle directed
as she left the room.
"Thanks, Scully. Rub it in why don't you?" Mulder
"Seriously, Mulder, Robbie's being more mature about
this than you are."
"What's mature?" Robbie asked.
"Something Agent Mulder needs to work on. Ready to
"Let me hold your hand."
When Scully's back was turned Mulder stuck his tongue
out at her.
"You're just proving my case, Mulder," Scully
commented as they got to the bathroom door and shut
it behind them.
"How did she do that?" he wondered as the Popsicle
slipped off the stick and landed in his lap. "Damn
"Mulder, little ears," Scully reminded him.
"Sorry," he apologized as he scooped up the Popsicle
remains and dropped them on his tray. "Shit, shit,
shit!" he thought as he searched for something to
wipe his hand on. When he couldn't reach the
tissues, he gave up and used the front of his gown.
Scully opened the door just in time to catch him in
"For Pete's sake, Mulder! Let me get you a
washcloth," she fussed. She turned around to run
some water over a washcloth.
"Let me take it," Robbie offered.
"You sure you feel like it?" Scully asked.
Robbie slowly walked to Mulder and ducked his head
shyly as he handed him the cloth.
"Hey, little man. Thank you. You sure do move well
for a fellow who just lost his appendix."
"I gots some band-aids and a sore tummy," Robbie
explained, pulling up his gown to show Mulder.
"You must be very brave," Mulder praised.
"I am," the little boy agreed solemnly.
"Come on, Robbie. You've been up long enough,"
"Thanks for the washcloth, Robbie. You go with Dana
"Okay. Bye Mulder.'
Scully helped Robbie get situated then made her way
over to Mulder.
"Would you like a clean gown?" she asked.
"That would be nice. Sorry for acting so juvenile.
I guess I'm just a little bit out of sorts," Mulder
"You're forgiven. You can't be very comfortable
"I'm not, but I shouldn't take it out on you."
Scully gave him a big kiss as the nurse came in,
followed by an aide.
"Are you ready to get rid of that catheter, Agent
Mulder?" she asked, gathering some gloves and paper
"I believe so."
"Then let's get that taken care of," she said as she
pulled the curtain around his bed.
"Mulder, I'm going to get that clean gown and your
It only took a few seconds to remove the foley
catheter. Scully helped Mulder change his gown and
wiggle into his running shorts.
"Now, for the main event," Michelle announced. "Leah
will hold your leg while I help you sit up. Agent
Scully, if you could move that chair over here, we'll
have something to prop Agent Mulder's leg on."
Within a few minutes Mulder was sitting on the side
of the bed with his back to Robbie.
"Are you doing all right, Agent Mulder?" Michelle
"Yes, I am."
"No, a little pain but I think I can handle it," he
"Okay. We'll try it for five minutes this first
time." She opened the curtain. "We'll be back in a
Scully turned to Robbie. "Look who's sitting up."
Robbie clapped then took notice of the bandage on
Mulder's back where the gown had fallen open. "Ooh,
Mulder gots a big boo-boo. He's brave too."
"Yes, Robbie. He really is," Scully agreed. "How
are you holding up, Mulder?"
"I'm getting a little shaky. This is harder than it
"Do you want me to call the nurse?"
"Not yet," he answered, his voice a little weaker.
"Mulder, I think you've had enough. If you pass out
I won't be able to hold you."
"Okay," he gave in.
Scully reached for the call button but the nurse was
back in the room before she could make the call.
"Mulder's getting a little tired," she explained.
"Then let's get him back to bed." She pulled the
curtain again. "Let's put you on your left side for
awhile. Agent Scully, if you could hold his leg, I
think we can get this accomplished. I need to talk
to you two anyway. Robbie's granny isn't coming.
There's a pretty bad storm on the way and she doesn't
want to get caught in it."
"Poor little guy," Mulder sympathized as he settled
onto his left side while the nurse put a pillow
between his legs. "He needs his Granny."
Scully pulled the curtain back to reveal Robby curled
up with Spongebob, sleeping.
"Agent Mulder, is that comfortable enough for you?"
"Feels great. Thanks."
The nurse pushed the button to release some morphine
into his IV. "Why don't you follow Robbie's example
and get some rest?"
"Good idea, Mulder," Scully agreed as the nurse waved
The TV programming was interrupted for a weather
bulletin telling them that a super cell thunderstorm
was two counties away and headed right for them.
"Scully, I'd feel much better if you would go back to
the motel for the night. You need to beat that storm
and stay close to that shelter," Mulder reasoned.
"What if you or Robbie need me?"
"I'll keep an eye on Robbie and I can call the nurse
if either one of us needs anything. Scully, I want
you to be safe. Please?"
"All right, Mulder, but call me if you start to feel
worse, or if you just want to talk."
"I will call you later. Leave the motel's number."
Scully wrote down the number and kissed Mulder
thoroughly before she left. He hit the pain control
again and dozed off with a huge smile on his face.
Several irritating sounds were disturbing Mulder's
sleep. He could hear doors opening and closing along
with panicked directions being shouted. A piercing
whistle came from the vicinity of the TV. A roaring,
vibrating sound was getting louder by the second and
a small child was screaming in his ear.
Mulder opened his eyes to see Robbie's terrified
face, tears streaming from his eyes. "Mulder,
Mulder! Wake up! I'm scared!"
"What the hell?"
Mulder's fuzzy brain tried to process everything that
was assaulting it. The TV. That was a tornado
warning. His eyes darted to the window. Lightning
was flashing, the wind was howling and the pressure
was increasing in his ears. That roaring, vibrating,
feel it in his chest noise, he'd heard that before.
He looked at the window again to focus on a tornado
crossing the field along side the parking lot,
drawing a bead on their room.
"Shit, not again!" Mulder exclaimed as he rolled from
the bed, tearing the IV from his wrist and sending
shockwaves of pain through his injured back and leg.
He pushed Robbie under his bed, grabbed a pillow and
covered him with it. He saw a nurse approach the
door just as the room seemed to explode. Mulder
covered his head and hoped that he would survive the
black monster outside their window.
Ceiling tiles and insulation landed on the beds,
narrowly missing him. The TV was thrown from its
mount, crashing into Mulder's bed as the window
exploded sending shards of glass flying. Mulder
could feel the sting as he was struck by several of
the flying pieces.
The bathroom door began to separate from the frame
then stopped, hanging crooked as the fury gradually
died down. Mulder removed the pillow covering
Robbie. "Hey, Buddy, you okay?"
"Is it gone?" Robbie whimpered.
"All gone," Mulder assured him.
Robbie started to crawl out from under the bed.
"Careful Robbie. There's broken glass all over the
Mulder put the pillow on the floor beside him and
motioned for Robbie to crawl onto it.
"Now, stay there while I get up and see what we've
Robbie began crying again.
"What's the matter, buddy? You're safe now."
Robbie pointed to Mulder's arms where the IV had torn
loose and bits of glass had caused numerous small
Mulder glanced down. "Hey, I'm okay. It doesn't
hurt," he lied. "Now, let me try to get up."
Mulder began to push off with his good leg.
"Agent Mulder, Robbie! Are you all right?" the
familiar voice of the nurse called.
"Over here!" Mulder shouted, relieved that he didn't
have to get up.
The nurse climbed over debris to find them in between
"Thank God!" she exclaimed. "We were right outside
your door, ready to bring you into the hall when the
twister hit. Are you hurt badly? What about
"Robbie's fine. I may need a stitch or two, but I'll
"Mulder putted me under the bed and putted a pillow
on top of me," Robbie explained, patting Mulder's
injured leg gently.
"Then he's a hero isn't he?" the nurse smiled.
"He's very brave but he got hurted," Robbie intoned
"Then let's get you guys out of here so we can fix
Agent Mulder up. Do you fellas have any shoes?"
"I did have some in the closet," Mulder answered.
"Are the closets still there?"
"They appear to be intact. Robbie, I'll see if I can
find your shoes too."
She made her way to the closets and found a pair of
sneakers for each of them. The closets had remained
undisturbed. She managed to climb over Robbie's bed
to get back to them. When she finished putting on
their shoes she picked Robbie up.
"Agent Mulder, I'll be right back. I'm going to need
some help moving some of this stuff before we can get
"Take your time. I'll be okay."
After she maneuvered Robbie out of the room, Mulder
carefully positioned himself so that his left side
was leaning against the bed. He didn't want to let
Robbie know that he really wasn't okay. "Thank
goodness the nurse, what was her name? Michelle,
yeah, thank goodness Michelle got Robbie out," he
thought as he shakily reached behind to feel his
back. It felt wet.
He brought his hand back around. It was covered with
blood, confirming that he had pulled some stitches
He only intended to close his eyes for a moment.
When he opened them again he was lying on his left
side on a stretcher in a hallway. Someone was doing
something to his back and it hurt like hell!
"Hey, stop! You're hurting me!"
"Agent Mulder, calm down. You're okay. I just
finished stitching you up again, and I added a few
new ones," Dr. Haus informed him.
"Where am I?"
"You're downstairs in the ER. Only the top floor was
damaged, and it looks like your room got the worst of
"What can I say? I'm a tornado magnet."
"We're operating on back-up power and treating those
we can. We're going to be sending you to Dodge City
as soon as we can get some more evac helicopters in."
"I need to let my partner know. I'm surprised she
isn't here by now. Have you seen her?"
"No, I haven't. Where was she?"
"She went back to the motel."
"Agent Mulder, I don't know how to tell you this, but
her motel was hit pretty hard."
Mulder tried to get up, but the doctor held him down.
"Nurse, I need 75 of Demerol over here."
"No, no drugs!" Mulder protested.
"Agent Mulder, you need to stay quiet. You could
cause yourself some serious damage. Rescue crews are
at the motel right now and they are pulling out
survivors," Dr. Haus emphasized.
"But you don't understand. I have to get to her.
She may be injured."
"If she is, the rescue crew will get her out and be
sure she is treated."
The nurse arrived to administer the painkiller.
"No, I don't need that!"
Dr. Haus nodded yes and the nurse injected the
Demerol despite Mulder's protest.
"Damn it! I've got to find Scully!" he cried as he
felt the medication enter his system.
"Agent Mulder, you've got to calm down. If I see her
I'll make sure someone gets word to you."
"Got to find her," Mulder mumbled as the medication
took him under.
He fought against the medication and was soon able to
open his eyes. The doctor and nurse had moved to
another patient down the hall. Mulder spied the
newly re-installed IV and uninstalled it in one quick
motion. He pushed himself up, wincing when the pain
hit. Pushing it back, he was soon sitting up,
planning his next move.
Grateful that they had not removed his shoes, Mulder
slid to the floor and grabbed the stretcher to steady
his self when he was almost overcome by a wave of
dizziness. He waited a few seconds for it to pass.
Battling grogginess from the medication, he began to
move down the hall, grabbing on to objects to steady
himself. He looked in each room as he passed, hoping
to find Scully.
One room caught his attention. It appeared to be a
supply room and he saw crutches hanging on the wall.
He pulled one down and grabbed the top from a pair of
scrubs on his way out. He pulled the top over his
head and dropped his gown in the doorway.
The crutch was a great find. With its support he was
able to move much faster. It only took a few more
minutes to make it to the ambulance bay. Although it
was dark, a distant flash of lightning lit up the sky
enough to enable him to spot a man in an EMT uniform
throwing some supplies in the back of his pick-up
"Hey, buddy," Mulder called. "You wouldn't be
heading to the motel by any chance would you?"
"Yeah, I am. I had to check on my little boy. He
was upstairs recovering from an appendectomy when the
"Is his name Robbie?"
"Yeah, how did you know?"
"We were roommates," Mulder explained, grabbing onto
the truck as he was assaulted by another wave of
"Agent Mulder isn't it?" the man asked as he reached
out to steady the swaying figure. "You need to get
back inside. You don't look so good."
"Look, my partner was at the motel. As soon as I
find her I will be more than happy to come back
"Okay," the EMT agreed hesitantly. "I heard what you
did for Robbie. You saved his life. Let me help you
get in the truck. My name is Allen Stewart by the
"You can call me Mulder."
Allen helped him sit down and move his legs into the
truck. It was an extremely painful maneuver and
Mulder nearly lost his tenuous hold on consciousness.
By the time he stopped seeing spots Allen had gotten
in and started the truck.
"You okay, Mulder?"
"Yeah." Mulder took a deep breath and his head
cleared a little more. "Your little boy is quite a
"Yes, he is. I'm just so thankful that he wasn't
"I hope my partner is as lucky."
"So do I."
The movement of the truck and the after effects of
the Demeral combined to make Mulder's eyelids
extremely heavy. He fought to stay awake.
"How much farther?"
"A little over a mile. I hope they've got the road
cleared or we'll have to go around the debris. It
will be a pretty rough ride."
"That's okay. Do what you have to do."
The road was becoming more cluttered with debris and
it was becoming difficult to maneuver around it. Up
ahead the road was completely blocked by the roof of
"Hang on, Mulder," Allen advised as he swerved off
The bumpy ride tore at Mulder's wounds. He held on
to the dashboard and hoped that the stitches would
hold. He looked ahead and spotted what was left of
the motel, outlined by the lights that had been
hastily set up by the search and rescue teams. It
"You've been finding survivors?" Mulder asked
"Yeah, we have. By all rights anyone who wasn't in
the shelter should be dead, but so far we haven't had
any deaths, although we still had two missing when I
left, the owner and a female occupant.
Mulder's heart sank. "Any hope that they made it?"
"There's always hope."
Allen stopped the truck by the rescue vehicles.
Mulder reached to open the door.
"Wait, Mulder. Let me get your crutch and bring it
around. Then I'll help you out."
After Allen helped him out of the truck, Mulder stood
for a moment looking over the destruction. Only part
of the office and the sign above it survived. He saw
a group of people tending to a victim under a tent
that had been hastily set up to the right of the
One of the rescue workers approached them. "They
just found the woman," he reported, a huge smile on
"Is she alive?" Mulder asked, longing for an
affirmative answer. "It's a miracle, but yeah, she's
Mulder began hobbling toward the medical team, never
taking his eyes from his goal. Allen followed close
behind. Neither of them noticed the thin strip of
aluminum siding in Mulder's path. His crutch became
entangled in it and he pitched forward, slicing his
right calf open on a slab of glass stuck upright in
"Damn it!" Mulder screamed in frustration as he
struggled to get up.
Allen was immediately at his side, pushing him down.
"Listen to me, Mulder. You have just sliced the hell
out of your leg. You have got to be still."
Mulder looked toward the place where he was beginning
to feel a horrible stinging pain. "Oh, shit! I've
done it now," he groaned as he saw the blood
geysering from the six-inch gash.
"Don't panic on me," Allen warned as he placed his
hands on the wound and began applying pressure. "I'm
going to holler for some help."
Mulder acknowledged him with a nod.
"I need some help here! Get that doctor over here
now!" Allen shouted at the top of his lungs.
The blood continued to pump from Mulder's leg despite
the pressure. His vision began to fade as he
registered a buzzing sound in his ears. "Passing
out," he thought, "Maybe dying. Where's Scully? Got
to find her."
Mulder could hear voices that faded in and out as he
felt several bodies around him.
"What have we got?" one of the voices asked.
"He cut his leg when he fell. Think he got an
artery," Allen reported. "We're going to need a
tourniquet and a lot of luck."
"Doc, over here, stat!" another voice shouted as
Mulder felt something tightening around his thigh
above the previous injury.
He heard someone running, then a strangled cry.
"Something familiar about that," Mulder thought, his
awareness fading fast.
"Oh, Mulder, what have you done to yourself?"
"Scully?" he whispered as his level of consciousness
slipped away until all was black.
Ever so slowly, Mulder's brain began to register and
process outside stimuli, a sound here, movement there
and pain. The pain registered nicely, thank you very
much. At last things started to make sense.
The sounds were those blasted monitors. Must be in
the I.C.U. again. The movement belonged to the
person taking care of him. The smell was sweet and
heavenly, just like his Scully.
"Scully?" he groaned as he opened his eyes.
"Thank God!" Scully's voice exclaimed.
Mulder's eyes began to focus and a smile spread over
his face. "Scully, you're alive!"
"Of course I'm alive."
"Guess I am still in Kansas then."
"I think you've been to Oz and beyond, Mulder."
"As long as I can come back to you it doesn't
matter," Mulder announced in a shaky voice.
"Don't try to talk. You're very weak. We've got to
have a talk about this desire you seem to have to
replace your entire blood volume every few days,"
"I'm fine, and that's another thing we need to talk
about. You've got to stop jumping to conclusions."
Mulder appeared to be confused so Scully explained.
"The tornado was bearing down on the motel as I
pulled into the parking lot. I made it to the
shelter with about thirty seconds to spare. I was
fine, Mulder. I was helping with the injured and was
just about ready to hitch a ride to the hospital to
check on you."
"Guess I should have waited, huh?"
"You've got that right. You've been in critical
condition for three days. One of these days your
body will cease to function and I would hate for it
to be because you placed your life on the line for
"I understand. Thirsty."
Scully scooped some ice from the water pitcher.
"Open." She placed a few ice chips on Mulder's
tongue. "I am very proud of you though.
The entire country has heard how you saved Robbie
despite your own injuries. You're a hero."
Mulder made a face.
"Might as well get used to it. The governor is even
sending over a commendation to be presented in front
of the media on the day you leave the hospital."
"Can't wait," he groaned, the sarcasm evident in his
"Enough talking now. Get some rest." She bent down
and kissed his forehead. "I'll be right here when
you wake up."
"Good. Keeps me out of trouble," he grinned, his eye
lids at half-mast. "Love you," he whispered.
"I love you too," Scully answered as Mulder's eyes
closed in sleep.
Five days later Mulder was beaming with pride as
Scully accepted her own commendation from the
governor. After a few brief words from the governor
and a few of Dodge Cities' elected officials, the
media event was dismissed.
"I think it's definitely time to get out of Dodge,"
Mulder quipped as Agent Seldon pushed his wheelchair
down the hall.
"I couldn't agree more," Scully added.
"Home James," Mulder directed Agent Seldon.
"Yes, there's no place like home." Scully grinned as
the agents approached the F.B.I. fleet car from