She wasn't the bed when he awoke, and the bassinet was empty. The 'conversation' from last night came back to his mind. He got up and headed toward the living room. The baby was asleep in his carrier on the kitchen table while Katy ate her own breakfast.
Scully looked up and grinned, "A little informal this morning, aren't we?"
He looked down and realized he was just wearing his boxers. "Sorry, couldn't wait to see my girls this morning."
Katy giggled and came running over to him, giving him an eggy kiss on the cheek. "Did you have good dreams darling?"
She nodded and Scully motioned for her to return to her seat. She did and checked to see if the baby was still asleep before resuming her meal.
"Scully, did you sleep okay?"
She looked up startled, then looked over at Katy. "Why don't you take your shower while I get Katy settled, then I'll fix your breakfast."
He nodded, she wanted privacy to talk. He hurried through his shower and returned to find Katy playing near the fireplace, her t-shirt off and her doll at her breast. He glanced over at Scully. She shook her head and shrugged. "I wasn't sure how to explain."
Mulder chuckled, this woman used to race down alleys, gun drawn, she had performed autopsies on the most horrible of victims, but this little two-year old had her stymied. Scully's eyes narrowed. He put his hands in the air as surrender, and moved into the kitchen.
"I can finish this, go sit down." He brought his meal to the table, along with a cup of tea for her. He glanced over at Katy again, but she was completely absorbed. "Want to talk about last night?"
"I'm sorry I woke you."
"That wasn't the problem. Do you remember?"
"Fish, yes, I remember." She looked at the baby. "Mulder, I hate knowing these things."
He took her hand, "What things, Sweetheart?"
"It, it's going to be a bad winter. The worse we've had since we've been here." This time she looked over at Katy. "We're going to be hungry."
Mulder stiffened. "That's what you meant about the fish."
"Yes. I know Will and Sam love fishing, but they usually throw everything back. We need to start keeping them, freezing them, preserving them somehow. And the chickens, we need to cut back on using the eggs and raise more chickens."
She nodded and returned the squeeze of his hand.
"I'll talk to Walter, get Charlie involved. Don't worry. Please, Scully, don't worry."
She managed to smile.
"What about the other?"
"Other?" She looked genuinely puzzled.
daughter? You were talking about her, a
little early you said but fine."
"I don't . . . I don't remember that. Mulder, I can guarantee I'm not pregnant now." She glanced over at her days old son.
"At least not by me." But he smiled as he said it, not in the least worried.
She rolled her eyes and rose from the table. "Go, you've got a lot to do."
"Only if you promise to take it easy. Let me handle this, you've warned us and I have no doubt you'll be cleaning your fair share of fish, but today - don't overdo."
She smiled, but he saw the tears in her eyes. He rose and took her into his arms, kissing her thoroughly. "I'm not going to let anything happen to you, or Katy, or Walt. Scully, you believe me, don't you?"
She nodded, "It's the other's I'm worried about."
"Well, stop now. This community is strong and smart. We'll get started on things today." He held her close for another moment, then moved toward the door.
The news seemed to be expected by Charlie, but then he had been through it before. He hadn't spoken often of the life his family had led in Ohio, but admitted now that they had lost people to hunger both winters.
Mulder and Walter exchanged glances. That wasn't going to happen to their people. "Charlie, do you think the boys would mind taking the lead on this fishing thing?"
Charlie actually chuckled at that. "No, I don't think so. Do you want me to go get them now?"
"In a little while. Look, you have the most experience with what we're facing. What else should we do?"
"Start cutting back now. Scrape up every piece of canning equipment you can find. And build an icehouse. If it is going to be a bad winter, we could lose power. Hell, they could cut us off; we haven't exactly been making regular payments you know. Once we have food frozen solid and build up a store of ice, it's easy to maintain."
"You've built one of these before?" Walter asked.
"I helped, in Ohio. We just didn't start early enough and after the first winter, we never caught up. We didn't have the supply of fish right out the back door either."
Mulder nodded, "We're not going to wait. What about the chickens? Scully said we should cut back on eggs and increase our flock."
"Good idea. That's the only protein we can grow with any speed. You know we're going to have to have food for the animals too." Charlie was watching the two men in front of him and saw the wheels turning. For the first time since Mulder had started talking, he felt a sense of relief. If anyone could get them through this it would be these two.
"Let's get started. Charlie, anything else you think of, bring it up. Ask for suggestions from everyone else. You're our expert on this. Don't hesitate to let us know what you need. The teams will be restructured for you."
looked at him for a minute and then nodded slowly. "You
want me to handle this?"
"Who would be better?"
"It's not the kind of thing I'm trained for. I was a professor, I taught English literature."
"And you'll be teaching it again, when the kids get a little older, but for now . . . Charlie, you're dug in here. I know you can handle this. You did survive in Ohio and kept your family safe. I want you to do the same for my family."
At that Charlie sighed. "Okay. They are my family too. I'll do the best I can."
"I never doubted it." Mulder smiled.
The boys were more than thrilled to be 'in charge' of such a project and seemed to understand the importance of what they were doing. They remembered Ohio as well. They began immediately, which put others to work cleaning the fish and preparing them for freezing.
Todd and a couple of the men that had arrived with Kelly began making day trips to surrounding areas to see what could be salvaged. Most of the people that had lived in the area had gone to Providence for health care. The ones that had survived for the most part hadn't returned. Either they went to live with other family or just didn't want to return.
Nothing was too unimportant to try to save. The problem was transporting it back. Brittany, with Kevin's help, outfitted one of her gardening wagons to be pulled by bicycle, which helped quite a bit. No one was left out of the planning and no idea was dismissed.
The boxed foods weren't a problem, but Scully made sure that all canned foods were tested. The shelf life was within reasonable limits, but it was her job to keep her family safe.
The linens, blankets and clothing were cleaned and distributed to each home. At Scully's suggestion, each house had five days worth of food set aside for emergencies, but the community began eating together in the great room of the house they used as the clinic. It was one of the larger houses - Mulder had offered it to her as a home shortly after they had realized they would be living here, but she preferred the smaller, more intimate house he had known as a child.
She had chosen this house to work in because of the large kitchen. Byers and Langly had used it as a lab and the rest of the house had worked well as their hospital. Now it was rearranged once again as the gathering place. Tables and chairs were brought in and the kitchen became one of the places they used to preserve food.
The books they had gathered became a library and Scully could envision a schoolroom someday for the children growing up here. Kevin made sure the children's books were easily accessible on the lower shelves.
The leftovers from the day's canning were served each night to anyone who showed up for dinner. Most people did, it was a chance to visit with Mulder, and exchange ideas and suggestions.
The community became even closer as they shared more personal information. Being around the children seemed to make everyone a family, though Katy's obvious choice was always Kevin.
Scully was grateful that Kelly usually attended as well. She worried about her living alone, though she seemed physically well. Now that Anne's pregnancy was confirmed as well, they had grown closer and often chose to work together in Kelly's home as an additional kitchen. Scully didn't know what they talked about, but both seemed to be better for the closeness.
Anne was supporting Kelly when they got to the clinic. "Dana!"
Scully and Beth both hurried to the front room from different parts of the house. "Anne, are you - “ Scully stopped when she saw Kelly. "Come on, let's get her in bed."
Beth settled her in and Scully took Anne back out to the front room. "What happened?"
"We were canning over at the house, and it was warm in the kitchen. She passed out. I thought when she came to she was okay, but then she seemed disoriented and I saw how swollen her feet and ankles were."
"Good catch. We'll keep her here, see what we can do."
"Is the baby . . . Is Kelly far enough along . . .?"
"Let's not worry about that, not yet." Scully said. They both turned when Beth joined them.
At Scully's look, Beth bit her lip. "Her blood pressure is . . . I don't know that we have anything to give her."
Scully mentally scanned everything in their store of medicines quickly. "We need to elevate her feet, see if we can get her to relax and bring it down naturally."
Neither of them missed the look of skepticism on Beth's face. There wasn't anything else to say.
After being reassured once more, Anne reluctantly returned to her work, promising to check back in a little while.
A couple of hours later, Scully and Beth stepped out of Kelly’s room to talk in private. "Dana, it's toxemia. You know there's only one - "
"I know. The baby should be okay. It's only a few weeks early." She nodded mostly to herself, "Okay, I'll talk to her and then we'll break her water and hope that starts the contractions. If not - "
"Don't look for more trouble, Dana."
Scully rolled her eyes and nodded.
"Want me to get Maggie?"
"Maybe you better. We might need reinforcements."
"Okay, I'll go while you talk to her. It's going to be okay."
Scully nodded and took a deep breath, then turned back into Kelly's room.
Kelly was barely coherent, slipping in and out of consciousness and Scully knew that she'd made the right decision. She quickly tried to tell Kelly what she was planning to do, but couldn't be completely sure she was understood.
She gently arranged Kelly and quickly broke her water. Then she settled back to see if her contractions started on their own. She heard the door open and her mother's voice, then was surprised to hear Mulder as well.
Scully moved to the door as he appeared there. "Hi. What are you doing here?"
"Beth said you had a situation. I thought I . . . “ He shrugged. "Can I help?"
"You already have." She leaned against him for a moment. She felt more than heard Beth move past her.
"Dana, I believe it's started." Beth had her hands on Kelly's stomach.
"Good." Scully sighed, "We just need to make sure it doesn't last too long."
Kelly kept drifting in and out of consciousness and Scully's fears rose. Her blood pressure was down minimally but she wasn't out of the danger zone.
"Dana, she's almost fully dilated, but she's not going to be very effective pushing."
"Then we'll have to help her." She looked over at Mulder. "Could you support her, when we have to push for her?"
"Whatever you need, Scully."
She nodded and pulled on her gloves that had been soaking in the alcohol. For just an instant she thought back to that last day in the hospital with Mulder, before they had escaped. He'd come out of the ER carrying a bag. She'd thought he had a set of scrubs, instead he had crammed the bag full of everything he could get his hands on - rubber gloves, penicillin, syringes. He had already understood more than she had and done his best, as usual, to protect her.
Their meager horde of supplies had lasted a long time and she had never been more careful with such things. What Todd and his crew were bringing in now helped, but Mulder's forethought . . .
Now she looked up at Beth and her mother and nodded. Maggie kept talking to Kelly, letting her know what was happening, even though she didn't seem to hear.
Maggie tried to talk to Kelly, help her understand, but it was obvious she couldn't be much help to them. She couldn't even do the breathing, so each contraction sliced through her with increasing intensity and duration.
Her cries were getting to Mulder. He kept visualizing what Scully had gone through alone when Walt had been born and once again there was nothing he could do. He watched Scully's face and realized that the distress he was seeing there was only for Kelly and this child. It was as though none of this brought back personal pain in any way.
"Dana, they're lasting almost two minutes. We need to check her dilation."
Scully nodded and after a quick exam, looked at Beth. Beth placed her forearm on Kelly's upper abdomen and began to slowly apply pressure toward her pelvis.
Kelly's body caught on and began the internal pushing that was necessary as well.
According to Scully they were making progress, but you couldn't prove it by Mulder.
Then suddenly things were happening, he could sense the tension level increase dramatically. He didn't want to speak, distract anyone, but . . .
Mulder felt Kelly collapse against him but it was different this time. She . . . it was different. "I've got the baby." Scully lay the newborn girl on the table and began massaging her. She moved and began squalling, and Scully leaned heavily against the table.
"Scully?" Mulder drew her attention, "I, uh, I think Kelly . . . "
Scully looked up quickly and shoved the baby into her mother's arms. She and Beth were both at Kelly's side and Mulder laid her gently down.
"There's no pulse. Beth, get the board."
"Scully, I don't think - "
"I have to!"
"Look at her eye, Scully." Mulder spoke low. Scully looked up into his eyes for an instant and then down where he indicated. Kelly's right pupil was completely dilated. She'd had a stroke. Scully's hands fisted in the sheets.
"Damn! Damn! Damn!"
Mulder looked over at Beth, then took Scully into his arms, as tears began coursing down her cheeks. "I should have gotten her pressure down."
"Scully, you did everything you could."
"She died. Mulder, she died! I couldn't -"
"But the baby didn't. Scully, you were able to save the baby." Mulder motioned for Maggie to bring the infant over. "Look, a healthy baby girl."
Scully reached out for her and took the infant from Maggie's arms. She held the baby close to her chest. "I need to nurse her."
"Scully, wait a minute - "
"Mulder, there isn't anyone else. Mary and Beth don't have the milk for a newborn anymore. It has to be me." Her eyes grew large, "Oh my god. This is the other daughter I talked about. Remember, a little early, but okay? Mulder, say something." Her tears had slowed as she remembered her conversation.
He was watching her, stunned. "She's Krycek's daughter." As soon as the words were out he regretted them. He glanced over at Beth and Maggie.
"Mom, could you take her and clean her up. Beth and I need to take care of Kelly."
"Of course." Maggie took the baby back and left with her.
"What do you need me to do, Scully?" Mulder put his arm around her.
"You were wonderful Mulder. Why don't you go tell the others that . . . that we need to have a grave . . . “ Her voice faltered. "Where are we going to bury her?"
"We'll find a nice place." He looked over at Beth, "Keep an eye on her?"
"Mulder, what about Anne?" She touched his arm.
"I'll . . . I'll find Todd, we'll talk to her. Scully, will you be okay?"
She nodded and after another moment Mulder turned and left to take care of his part of what had to happen next.
When Mulder returned, he found Scully in the room she used as her office. The tiny girl was at her breast. Mulder took that in, but said nothing.
"Mulder? You okay?"
He sighed and pulled the extra chair up beside her. "So, what are we going to name her?"
She gave him a tentative smile then. "You're okay with it? With us raising her?"
He took her hand, "She's not responsible for anything that happened ten years ago. The only thing I'm worried about is you. You're already nursing a two month old - "
"I can do this. Look at Beth, she nursed both MJ and Missy."
"True, but I'm not in love with her."
Scully chuckled at that. "I can do this. You asked about the name, I thought Kelly Alexis."
He sighed, "Yeah, I guess that would be perfect."
“Mulder, Byers says her immunity is almost to the level of Katy and Walt’s.”
“You think Krycek had the vaccine?”
“I don’t know, but he was infected with the black oil.”
Mulder shrugged, “What we don’t know about the process would fill a book.” He sighed and she looked back down at their new daughter.
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Mulder, Scully, the Lone Gunman and Skinner all belong to Chris Carter, 10-13 and Fox. No infringement intended.