She stood there in front of the light box, gazing toward the x-rays that were displayed there. She didn’t see them any more.
Somewhere in her mind she had known there was a problem. The nosebleeds, the headaches, she could have ignored them for awhile. The symptoms weren't that bad, more annoying, but . . . “You have something I need.” Those words had chilled her. Cancer. That hadn’t been what she had imagined. She wasn’t a pessimist, so that dire a diagnosis hadn’t been her first thought.
Her doctor had been kind, but honest with her. She didn’t envy him his profession. Her specialty was difficult, but when she got the patient it was over. She only had to find the how or the why. Dr. Zuckerman had to face the patient and give them the news that their illness was serious and that the treatment could be worse than the disease.
How was she supposed to face this? Damn it, she was young, up until just a little while ago, healthy.
How did she tell her family? She had already disappointed them so much. Her father had tried, just before he died, to get close to her again, but he hadn’t known what to say to her. Her mother was confused by her choices. Now she would be devastated. She would lose another daughter, her last daughter. No grandchildren from either of her girls.
Bill was furious with her and had no trouble telling her he thought she was an idiot.
Missy. She missed Melissa right now more than she had in weeks. She would have been able to come up with a positive spin, or some alternative medicine that they could debate.
She realized her hands were shaking as she touched the light spot on the film once again.
She wasn’t ready for this. There was so much she hadn’t done. She had concentrated on her career, thinking that she had plenty of time for the personal later.
Personal. What did that mean to her? No family of her own, no husband, no children, no house with a little garden, no Muld . . . no man. Now that was an impossibility. There would never be the personal for her.
“Dr. Scully?” Dr. Zuckerman was back. “Is there anyone you’d like to call? Family? I’d be happy to talk to someone with you.”
She just blinked as she looked at him. Call? Without thought her cell phone was in her hand. She managed to nod at the doctor, then turned from him. He took the hint and left her alone again.
She pressed the number 1.
“Mulder, I need you.”
He was already moving toward his car. “Mulder, I need you.” Those were words he’d always wanted to hear from her, but not like this. Why hadn’t he known she was feeling ill?
She’d said she had a doctor’s appointment so she was leaving early this afternoon. She hadn’t given him any further explanation, so he had assumed it was something female. That’s not the kind of thing he’d pursue.
After she’d left, he’d hung around and pretended to get something done. But without her there, he’d been lonely. Yeah, lonely. No one that knew him would believe that, but it was true. He needed her now, in ways he had never imagined he would ever need anyone.
Okay, he hadn’t told her that. She’d laugh in his face if he acted like some moonstruck kid around her. That or she’d cut and run to get away from him.
In any case he’d given up and left early himself. He’d headed home and actually done some housework and a load of laundry. She was a good influence on him.
And why didn’t this jerk get out of his way? He needed to get to her. She’d called him. She’d asked him to come, to meet her at the hospital . . . in oncology. Why oncology?
He shuddered violently. Oncology. Cancer. No, not Scully.
Why had she gone to the doctor? What symptoms had she been hiding from him? Why had she hidden them? He was here for her, surely she understood that. Yes, she had called him.
The car in front of him slowed down and he gripped the steering wheel harder. His knuckles were already white. He wanted to break something. Why was this asshole slowing him down?
But what was he going to find when he got there? His foot lightened on the gas pedal. Could he face this?
He had no choice, “Mulder, I need you.” She needed him, and God knows he needed her.
He could see the hospital ahead of him now. He had to be with her, be strong for her. He pulled into the parking lot and found a space. He found he couldn’t let go of the steering wheel to open the door.
She hadn’t said she had cancer, she’d said she needed him. Why was he freaking like this? He forced his fingers to uncurl from the curved plastic and opened the car door.
He entered through the main door and detoured through the gift shop. He picked up a bouquet of flowers. She’d probably laugh at him, but he needed something in his hands. He made a few turns, lost when he didn’t enter through the ER and finally retraced his steps and came in that way. He found his steps speeding up now, his need to see her surpassing his dread.
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Mulder, Scully, the Lone Gunman and Skinner all belong to Chris Carter, 10-13 and Fox. No infringement intended.