She was deep asleep when the phone rang. In struggling to wake she tried to turn off the alarm. When she woke enough, she grabbed the phone on the third ring, barely beating the answering machine. “Hello?”
“Scully.” His voice sounded strange, almost relieved.
“Mulder? What time is it?”
“I’m not sure. Around two.” Now she was awake enough to catch the tone of his voice.
“What’s wrong?” She was fully awake and becoming anxious as his voice registered.
“I, uh, I’ve been arrested.”
“What?” She was sitting up now. “Where are you?”
“I’m on my way, Mulder. Don’t worry.”
“Thanks, Scully.” He hung up the phone, but had trouble releasing the receiver. She hadn’t even asked any questions, just coming to him. He hoped she’d stay when she found out why.
She was throwing on her clothes. What the hell had he done now? She was in her car in less than fifteen minutes.
When she pulled into the station she took just a second to compose herself. She had to be professional here. A final deep breath and she got out of the car. The officer at the desk snapped to when she approached him.
“You’re holding a Fox Mulder. I’m here to see him.”
The cop ran his finger down the list. “You need to speak with Detective Davis. He’s right over there.” He pointed and she headed toward the back. He leaned out to watch her walk away.
“Detective Davis?” The man looked up. “I’m here to see Fox Mulder.”
His eyes widened a little and it took him a second to speak. “You his lawyer?”
“No. I’m his partner.”
“Partner?” He was obviously in no hurry.
She pulled out her badge. “You are holding Special Agent Fox Mulder of the FBI. I am his partner, Special Agent Dana Scully. I would like to know what the charges are.”
“Okay, sure.” He leaned back in his chair the better to watch her. “Rape, assault, battery, attempted murder. Some partner you have there.”
“There’s been a mistake.”
“Yeah, and he made it. Still want to talk to him?” He kept staring at her then looking away. It was becoming very uncomfortable.
The look on her face set him back. This was one determined and angry lady. Fine, talk to him, he thought, we’ve got him. In fact now, after meeting his partner they really had him. Just wait until his pretty partner sees the evidence we have, he thought. He took his time rising and locating the keys on his desk. He took her weapon and phone.
He left her in the interrogation room and went to get Mulder. She was glad for the privacy. She was still reeling from the detective’s list of charges. What had happened? How could Mulder be accused of those things?
She was back on her feet when she heard the door opening. The detective and an officer led him in, his hands cuffed in front of him.
Davis motioned for the officer to leave. “Someone will be right outside the door if you need anything.” Scully didn’t bother to respond. Davis nodded to himself, removed the cuffs and left, closing the door behind him.
Finally Mulder looked up from the floor and into her face. “I didn’t do it, Scully.”
“I know.” He finally drew a breath. She approached him then, since he seemed reluctant to come to her. She placed a hand on his chest. At that he moved, pulling her into his arms and holding her as though he would never let go. She didn’t hesitate, her own arms encircling him, holding him safe. Neither knew how long they stood that way, drawing strength from each other.
When she finally pulled away, she put one hand on his cheek and with the other drew him to the table. They sat beside each other, neither wanting the width of the table to separate them.
Still holding his hand, she finally spoke again. “Have you called a lawyer?”
He gave her that shy half grin of his. “One phone call, Scully.”
“Okay, tell me everything that happened.”
“Nothing! Scully, I don’t know what’s going on. I was dozing on the couch and the police started banging on the door. They said I’d . . . I’d done that and hauled me down here.”
“Did the woman identify you?”
“I haven’t seen anyone. There’s been no line-up.”
“Okay, let’s start at the beginning. We left the office together.”
“Right, I walked you to your car.” She nodded.
“Okay, where did you go then?”
“Did anyone see you? The pizza delivery guy? Anyone?”
“No. I had leftover Chinese. I didn’t see or talk to anyone after I left you.”
“No communication with anyone?”
“Wait! I got an email from Frohike.”
“Did you respond?”
“Yeah, and there’ll be a time on it.”
“Okay, that’s a start. I need to get you an attorney and see the evidence. Have you given them any, uh, samples?”
“No.” He couldn’t look at her.
“Don’t. Not until you’ve been examined. When, uh . . . Mulder, when was the last time you were, were with a woman?”
“Scully . . . “ How could he answer that? How could he tell her he hadn’t been with a woman since . . .?
“It’s necessary information.” She made her voice very professional. She didn’t want this information. It was better imagining him alone than knowing he’d actually been with Diana or someone like her.
“Um, November 1994.”
“I beg your pardon?” Now she looked up at him. She had to have misunderstood.
“Puts a whole new spin on Eddie Van Blundth as loser, doesn’t it?” She couldn’t stop the blush that took her face, and looked away from him again. “Scully?”
“I need to get an attorney over here and see what they have against you. Don’t worry, Mulder; we’ll get this straightened out.”
“Scully.” She rose from her seat. “Scully, please.” She stopped and with some effort met his eyes. His lips moved, but no sound emerged.
She brushed the hair back from his forehead and placed a kiss there. “Don’t worry, Mulder. We’ll get to the bottom of this.”
His arms wanted to go around her, to crush her to him again, but he couldn’t. Not now, maybe not ever. That thought tightened his chest, making breathing difficult.
“I’m not leaving, Mulder. I just have to make some calls.” At that she tapped on the door.
He stood watching her as the guard cuffed his hands again to lead him back to the holding cell. She winced as the handcuffs clicked, but he didn’t even feel it.
She had to leave to call an attorney, he understood that. They’d taken her phone, but . . . The guard was tugging on his arm.
“Don’t worry, Mulder.” He nodded and attempted a smile. Then she was out of his sight and his mood plummeted.
He should be . . . hell, he was in her hands again, his life safe because she was willing - for whatever reason - to take on the responsibility. She would call a lawyer, probably a friend. She had lots of friends. One of her roommates was a lawyer, wasn’t she? Scully had lots of friends. She used to spend time with them before, before him. Hell, she still might, he wouldn’t know. After work, weekends, he didn’t really believe she sat home alone like . . . like him. He was probably lucky he had even caught her at home.
He sank down onto the bench, no longer aware of the other man, sleeping off a drunk. Mulder didn’t even hear him snore anymore.
He hadn’t done it, but knowing that she had even heard those charges against him was devastating. He’d seen the stunned look in her eyes at his admission. Had she really been that surprised? He sighed, why wouldn’t she be? He’d certainly not made any move toward her. He had good reasons for that . . . they just weren’t coming to mind right now.
Would they let her stay with him while they waited for the attorney? How long had he been back here? They’d taken his watch. There was a clock out in the hall, but he didn’t have the energy, or the courage, to stand up and look. What if, what if it had only been five minutes . . .?
She made her way back to Detective Davis’ desk. He wasn’t there and she wasn’t ready to explore the feelings Mulder's answer had raised in her, so she took the detective's phone and phonebook, and dialed the number she wanted.
It took three rings, but finally she heard “H-hello?”
“Nick? Nick Turner?”
“Yeah, who is this?”
“It’s Dana Scully. I’m sorry to call so early.”
“Yes, listen - “ she heard a disturbance, another voice, female.
“A woman? Calling you now?” She missed the rest of it; he’d obviously put his hand over the receiver.
“Just a minute, Dana. Let me take this in the other room.” There was a short pause, then he picked up the phone again.
“Nick, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to . . . “
“Dana, you didn’t call me at . . . at 3:30 in the morning for a social call. Don’t worry about it. What’s wrong?”
“A friend of mine needs a lawyer.”
“Must be a pretty good friend, from your voice.” She didn’t respond. “Tell me where this friend is.”
“He’s downtown, Alexandria.”
“What’s the charge?”
“Rape and attempted murder.”
“Dana?” He was wide-awake now.
“He’s innocent, Nick. You need to get him out.”
“Where are you?”
“I’m at the station.”
“Okay, I need to get dressed. I’ll be there as quick as I can. Don’t expect bail, Dana, not on those charges. Try to relax, I’m on my way.
She hung up and was immediately caught up again in their conversation. November 1994? That’s when she had been missing. What had happened? Who . . . no that was none of her business. Not since? This was not a good idea; she needed to keep busy. Where was Detective Davis? She rose to go look for him and spotted him coming toward her with a cup of coffee.
“You look like you could use this.” He handed it to her, then dug cream and sugar packets from his pocket.
“Thanks.” She took a grateful sip. “Can we talk about this case?”
“As his partner, or as an agent.”
“To try and solve this.”
He gave her a slight bow. “Go ahead.”
“Did she positively identify him?”
“The victim hasn’t regained consciousness yet.”
“Well then, how did you decide Mulder was the attacker? You picked him up at his apartment.”
“A passerby heard the commotion and investigated. Your friend ran off, but he saw the car and got the license.”
“The car could have been stolen.”
“Mulder matches the description of the man he saw running.”
“Is he still here? I’d like to talk to him myself.”
Davis pursed his lips and took a moment to stare at the ceiling. “Not without me.”
“Fine. Is he still here?” Davis nodded. “Come on.”
A very ordinary looking man was sipping his own coffee in a small room, waiting impatiently to go home. “Mr. Phillips? I’m sorry this is taking so long, but Agent Scully here would like to ask you a few questions.”
“More questions?” he sighed.
“I’m sorry, Mr. Phillips, but we need to make certain the correct man is charged with this crime. Could you describe to me what you saw?” Scully joined him at the table.
He rolled his eyes, but sat up straighter in the chair. He once again related how he had been walking toward his car when he heard a woman moaning. He had hurried into the alley and seen a man leaning over a woman. He had yelled and the man had taken off away from him. He’d seen only his back, but he was tall, good physique, on the slim side with dark hair. He’d easily outrun him, but Phillips had been able to get close to the car as it took off. He stood fast on that identification and the license number. He’d written that on his hand as it went past him.
“So the man you saw leaning over this woman raced to the car, jumped in, turned on the engine, and took off before you could get there?”
“No, he didn’t turn on the car. The other guy was driving. He just jumped in and they took off to the right, up Euclid.”
“What a minute!” Davis came awake with a vengeance. “There was another man in the car?”
“Yeah, didn’t I mention that?”
Dana looked over at Davis, who hung his head, shaking it slightly.
“What did this other man look like?” Dana probed.
“He was too far away. I had the impression he was smaller than the guy I’d chased, and less hair. That’s about all I know.”
Dana turned back to Davis. “I assume you’ve checked the car for prints?”
“It’s in the impound. We’ve taken care of it. But I haven’t heard the results.” Davis looked up as an officer interrupted them. After a few whispered words, Davis turned to Scully. “You expecting a Nick Turner?”
“Yes. He’s the attorney I called. May he join us?”
“Hell, why don’t we invite the mayor and my mother too?”
“I’d think you would want our cooperation. Your case is already in trouble. If there was someone else in the car . . . “
“I know. Yeah, hell, get him in here.” He waved the uniformed cop out and slumped down in his chair. His airtight case was leaking badly, damn it.
Scully rose to meet Nick at the door. He gave her a kiss on the cheek and took her arm to lead her back to the table. “When can I see my client?”
“You need to hear this first, Nick.”
“Again?” Phillips slammed his hand on the table. “I’m beginning to feel like a damn suspect. Remind me never to try to help anyone ever again.”
Scully looked over at him. “We do appreciate your assistance. I hope you know that.”
He sighed, “I’m going to be damned effective at work in a few hours.”
“We’ll write you a note,” Davis said dryly.
Scully glared at him, then brought Nick up to date ending with, “I’ve heard this a couple of times now. It’s looking more and more like a set up to me.” She turned to Davis. “Is the victim under guard?”
“Under guard? She’s in a hospital, unconscious. She’s being monitored, there’re doctors and nurses everywhere. And the guy that did this to her is here.”
To diffuse the glare, Nick spoke. “I assume you have pictures of her injuries.”
“Yeah.” Davis glanced over at Scully.
“May we see them?” she asked. If he thought she couldn’t look at crime photos he was in for a shock.
“I’ll be right back.” He was as good as his word, and returned almost immediately with the photos, which he handed to Nick. Nick’s eyes widened and he glanced up at Davis. Davis shrugged but said nothing.
“What?” Scully had risen to her feet. “What’s going on here?”
“Dana . . . “ She reached for the photos and after only a short hesitation Nick handed them over.
She couldn’t hide her shock, gasping and dropping several of the photos. Nick had hold of her arm and sat her back in a chair. Phillips watched the interplay fascinated. He definitely wanted a look at those pictures; it had been so dark he hadn’t gotten a good look at what the woman really looked like under all that blood.
Nick picked up the pictures she had dropped. “It’s definitely a set-up.” She’d managed to keep her voice steady.
“Or he was acting out his fantasies where he thought he wouldn’t be caught?” Davis actually retreated a step from the look she shot him.
Phillips leaned forward to catch a glimpse. Oh god! Now he understood, the woman in these photos was a dead ringer for the woman sitting in front of him. The bruises were the only difference he could see.
“Mulder hasn’t seen these has he?”
“No, he already knew what she looked like.”
“He. Didn’t. Do. This.” She spoke slowly and clearly as though to a child. “But whoever did doesn’t want her to wake up and identify him. She was supposed to die there. Mr. Phillips messed things up so they’re going to try again. You need to get some people over there. Her life is in danger. You have to believe me. Have you identified her?”
“According to her ID she’s a Carolyn Sigmon. We assume she’s a tourist, since her home address is in Tucson. We haven’t been able to reach anyone yet.”
“Did you check to see if she’d been reported missing?”
“It’s the middle of the night, Agent Scully.”
“If that means no, I can call the Bureau. We have these things called computers . . . “
“I get it.” The detective didn’t even try to bluff; he’d blown this case in his delight to find what had too obviously been the ‘right’ guy.
“Well Carolyn Sigmon is in more danger now than she was.” She glanced over at Nick.
“Look, Davis, I don’t know what’s going on here or why someone would go to this kind of trouble, but I think Agent Scully could have a point. Some protection around this woman wouldn’t hurt.”
“I have to get over there. Nick, tell Mulder where I’ve gone. Tell him I’ll see him as soon as I feel she’s safe.” She was on her feet, the sense of danger forcing her to hurry.
“Wait! Wait just a minute! I can’t let you go guard the victim. Not with your connection to the accused.”
“We’re running out of time.”
Davis glanced over at Nick, and saw an amused challenge. “Shit!” He rose from his seat. “You through with Phillips here?”
“For now. I may have more questions later.”
“Fine. Mr. Phillips, you can go with our thanks. Make sure we can get in touch with you. Come on, Agent Scully.”
“Yeah, we’ll guard my victim together until I can get some men lined up.”
“You don’t have to . . . “
“You’re not going to hang out there alone. If you’re right, they could have been after you in the first place. If you’re wrong. . . well, you’re not going to be alone with her. Coming?”
She glanced over at Nick. He nodded and she rose. “Tell Mulder.”
“I will, go on.”
Davis gathered up the pictures and at Nick’s request left him one to show Mulder. They stopped by his desk to pick up her things, then they were on their way.
Nick had one of the officers get Mulder for him. He’d been there nearly an hour and still hadn’t seen his client. But he had learned a lot. He was making notes when he heard the door open. He looked up and watched the prisoner as he entered the room, the man’s eyes automatically searched for Dana. Nick saw his shoulders sag slightly as he realized she wasn’t there.
Nick rose and extended his hand. “I’m Nick Turner, a friend of Dana’s. She asked me to come see you.” He watched Mulder absorb the information that he and Dana were friends. No, she was right, this man would never harm her; he was too much in love with her. Nick decided to put him out of his misery.
“My wife wasn’t too keen on having a woman call me at 3:30 in the morning. You better hire me, so I have a good excuse.” Mulder relaxed slightly and Nick began to smile. “Want to tell me what’s going on here?”
“I would if I could.”
“Well, I already know a lot, probably more than you do at this point. Dana and Detective Davis are headed toward the hospital to protect the woman you’re accused of attacking. Dana’s convinced it’s a set-up and the woman was supposed to die. She said you’d understand when you saw this.”
He pulled the photograph from his file and handed it to Mulder. He was instantly glad his client was seated. All color left Mulder’s face and his eyes changed color right in front of him. His breathing became shallow and his hands were trembling had he even heard what Nick had told him? Mulder shoved the photo back at him.
When he had control of his voice again, he said, “We have to find the bastard who did this. Scully’s right. This was set-up. If this woman dies you’ll never be able to prove it wasn’t me.”
“They’ll do DNA testing. I’ll insist on it.”
“If it’s the people I think it is behind this, that won’t help.”
“You a regular sperm donor?”
Mulder gave him that fake laugh and nod. “You’d be surprised.”
“I’m beginning to doubt that. The rumors I’ve heard about Dana’s job are true aren’t they?”
They spoke for a few minutes, but Mulder really had no further information so Nick excused himself to see what he could do about bail. He wasn’t encouraging.
Again Mulder was returned to the cell, but this time he was barely aware of it. That picture was permanently engraved in his mind. It could have been Scully. One eye had been swollen shut. There was a gash on one cheek where she’d been struck; the other was a mass of bruises. Her lips were swollen and cut. He raised a shaky hand to his brow.
He had to get past this. He needed to think. They had set him up. This woman had been attacked because of her resemblance to Scully. If she died . . . if she died he would be convicted. No one would believe him. He had no real alibi, they’d made sure of that. He shouldn’t be surprised, they rarely made mistakes. Scully had been their only mistake, really.
Was anyone protecting this woman? Oh shit! They thought they had him. This woman was in danger. They’d make it look like she died of her injuries, but there was no way they could let her live. He was on his feet now, yelling for the guard.
A nurse let them into the woman’s room under protest, only their badges granting them a grudging admittance. Scully took the seat near the head of the bed and Davis sat nearer the door.
It was getting light out before the woman stirred. Scully was on her feet immediately. “Can you hear me?” She took the woman’s hand. “Carolyn, wake up.”
She was only able to open one eye; the other was swollen shut. “Hurts,” she whispered.
“I know. You’re in the hospital, Carolyn. You’re safe. Do you remember what happened?”
“I don’t . . . how did I get away? Did you find me? He hurt me, oh god, he hurt me!” Tears flowed from her eyes. Davis winced; he hated these cases. He’d been thrilled to find the perp so quickly and with such clear-cut evidence against him, apparently too thrilled.
“Try to relax. You’re safe. No one’s going to bother you now.” Scully took a tissue and wiped at the tears. “Who was he, Carolyn, the man who hurt you? We want to arrest this guy, make sure he doesn’t hurt anyone else. Can you identify him?” Davis wasn’t happy, he should be questioning the witness, but after what had happened to her . . . Hell, he should have brought a female officer with him. Well, this Agent Scully wasn’t leading her. She was a professional.
“Do you know his name?”
“I don’t think it’s a name, the ones working for him called him Fox. But it always sounded like they were making fun when they . . . ” Her breathing was hiccuping now, but she was trying to focus. Scully admired the way she was handling this. Even if what she said was not what Scully wanted to hear.
“Did you know you’re in Washington, DC?” Stay calm, Dana. The detective was watching her as much or more than he was watching the victim.
“No, I was in Tucson. He brought me here?”
“If I were to show you a picture, could you identify him?” She looked over at Davis. His eyes were narrowed.
“I think so.”
Scully reached for her purse and pulled her wallet out. She withdrew a picture of Mulder that she carried. He didn’t even know she had this picture. It was casual; her mother had taken it over Thanksgiving when he wasn’t looking. She handed it to Davis.
Yeah, it was a good likeness. He nodded at her and handed the picture back as he stood. He wanted to be watching Ms. Sigmon’s face when she saw it. That would tell him more than her words.
Scully turned the picture so that the young woman could see it easily. She wasn’t able to hold it herself for the bandages and the tubes. Scully hoped her own hands weren’t shaking.
Carolyn’s face remained blank. “No, that’s not him.”
“Are you sure?” Detective Davis moved closer and then back as the woman in the bed cringed. Shit, he should have spoken more softly. He hadn’t meant to scare her.
“Carolyn, this is Detective Davis. He wants to help you. Look at the picture again. Could this have been the man that kidnapped you?”
“No, that’s not Fox. They have the same coloring I guess. I’ve never seen that man before.”
Scully closed her eyes in relief, then immediately opened them. “Detective? Do you have any questions?”
“Is there anything else you
could tell us?
Instead of answering, her eyes welled up again.
“I think that’s enough for now, isn’t it, Detective?”
“Yeah, you’ve given us good information, Ms. Sigmon. You . . . you rest now.”
Scully could see the woman begin to tremble now that she was thinking about herself again, no longer focused on helping the police. “Carolyn, could you give us the name of someone we can call for you?”
“My . . . my sister, Ellen.” The tears spilled at those words. She managed to give Scully the phone number but couldn’t speak after that.
“Agent Scully.” Davis drew her away from the bed, closer to the door. “While you’re calling the sister I’m going to see what’s taking so damn long to get us some relief here. I’ll be right outside.”
Scully nodded and when he left the room pulled out her phone.
She placed the call to Carolyn’s sister. The woman thanked Scully over and over and assured her she would be on the first plane to DC.
Davis still hadn’t returned, so Scully took his seat behind the door to give Carolyn some space in case she woke disoriented or frightened, but not be alone.
She put her head back and stretched. At least it was beginning to be daylight outside now. Where had Davis gone? If she was alone too long she’d start thinking about Mulder’s answer earlier.
She glanced over at the woman, asleep again. They’d had to go to Tucson to find someone who looked that much like her. Mulder would have gone to prison for this, or worse. If Carolyn had died . . .
November, 1994. Mulder hadn’t been with a woman since then? Should she believe that? Well, she had no reason not to, but . . . He was a healthy male, why? Why would he . . . what about Diana? She had just assumed that they had been together. And assuming that had hurt like hell. It was one of those things they didn’t talk about, because she assumed he didn’t want to.
Maybe she should try to change that.
She looked up as the door opened and started to speak. Something made her stop. Davis would have just walked in, maybe this was one of the doctors.
The man that entered was tall, dark hair, with a good physique. He did look like Mulder, from behind anyway. What had he done to Davis? Well, there wouldn’t be any backup coming. At least he hadn’t spotted her yet.
She moved slowly, she needed to get her gun out. He was probably armed, but he wouldn’t want to shoot Carolyn, not while Mulder was in police custody. He probably planned to smother her.
She had her hands on her gun when something made him turn. His eyes widened and he jumped for the door.
“Stop! You’re under arrest.” She was on her feet now, but he was already in the hall. She raced after him, yelling for security. He turned and fired a shot as he ran.
Shit! This guy obviously didn’t care about anything but getting away now. Scully ducked and the shot was high anyway, but she couldn’t let him continue firing, not here. She didn’t dare miss, but she couldn’t let him get away either. That would mean Mulder’s life. Everyone else in the hall had hit the deck. She took very careful aim.
Her shot took him in the lower back and he hit the floor. She was on him immediately, not terribly concerned about his injury. Then security joined her and the man was rushed to the ER in restraints.
She followed and stood watch as she waited for the police to arrive. They didn’t take long.
The first uniformed cop to arrive was directed to her. “I’m Officer Richards. They said you were here with Detective Davis.”
“I was, he’s missing. I’m sure this man did something to him, but security hasn’t found him yet. You need to get some more people down here and make sure there’s a guard outside Carolyn Sigmon’s room. That’s the patient this man was here to kill.”
“Uh, yes ma’am.” Richards was taken aback at her air of command, so she pulled out her badge. That lit a fire under him and he was on his radio instantly.
Once Scully was guaranteed that a uniformed officer would remain in the ER, though the trauma doctors assured her the victim wasn’t going anywhere, she joined in the search for Davis.
He was finally found unconscious, stuffed into a stall in the men’s bathroom two floors down from Carolyn’s room. He was also transported to the ER with a concussion, broken nose and several bruised ribs.
Scully approached Richards once she was sure that Davis was out of immediate danger. “Has anyone tried to see the patient?”
“No. The doctors are still in with him.”
“Okay, I want photographs of this man, prints, DNA. I want two complete sets of samples, one for your labs and one for the FBI.”
“Don’t you want me to wait until the doctors - “
“No. This man will very likely disappear from this facility before he is identified. I want this information on file now.”
“Yes ma’am.” The young officer was on his radio again. He invoked her credentials when the doctors balked at the fingerprinting, but since it was a crime, they couldn’t stop the action as long as the patient wasn’t harmed.
While that was going on, she called the Gunmen, and asked them to meet her at the hospital, then finally she reached Nick.
“Dana? What’s going on?”
“A lot. The man that assaulted Carolyn is in the ER and so is Detective Davis. Can you get Mulder out?”
“Not on just your word, talk to me.”
She gave him a slightly longer version, stopping when he whistled. “Geez, Dana, is this what you do for a living?”
“What do you mean?”
“Figure out stuff like this.”
“It’s why they pay me the big bucks, Nick. How’s Mulder?”
“The picture devastated him. He said exactly what you said he would, a set-up.”
“It was a set-up. Carolyn had been taken from Tucson, kidnapped because of her resemblance to me. If she had died . . . she didn’t and she’s seen Mulder’s photograph, with Davis as a witness. She couldn’t identify him, she said she’d never seen Mulder.”
“That’s certainly going to help.”
“Can you get him out?”
“Soon, Dana. Believe me, he’s as anxious to get out as you are to have him out. How long have you been seeing him?”
“Seeing him? Nick, he’s my partner.”
“Is that what you think?”
“Nick . . . “
“That man sure is invested in your partnership. If I wasn’t married I’d be afraid to get him out, afraid he’d come after me.”
“What did he say?”
“It was more the way he looked at me when I told him we were friends. Jealous much, Dana?”
There was a long silence.
“Dana? You knew this, didn’t you?”
Mulder hadn’t been with a woman since . . .
“Dana? You still there?”
“Uh, yes. Look, I can’t leave the hospital for probably another hour. Can I meet you downtown then?”
“It’ll be closer to two hours for me.”
“Okay. I’ll see you there.”
When she turned around, Byers was entering the ER, followed closely by Frohike and Langly.
“Agent Scully, where’s Mulder?”
“It’s a long story. We have a prisoner that will probably vanish shortly.” The three men exchanged glances. “I want to have evidence of his identity preserved and I’m confident that won’t happen through ‘official’ channels.”
Langly grinned, “You’ve been around our favorite G-man too long, Scully.”
She huffed at that, but didn’t dispute it. “Byers, come with me. You two can’t pass as agents.”
“You should have told us to come in disguise.” Frohike complained and she had to smile slightly, as though any disguise would make these two look official.
She watched Richards snap to attention as she approached and turned to roll her eyes. “Do you have the information I requested?”
“Yes ma’am.” He handed her two sets of photos, prints and sterile containers for the DNA.
“Thank you. Agent Byers?”
Byers stepped closer.
“I want you to take the FBI’s evidence. Make sure it gets to a safe place, a very safe place.”
“I’m on it, Agent Scully.” He turned and left the ER, the other two followed him quickly.
Scully managed not to smile, the information would be on the web very soon. She had no doubt the man lying unconscious a few feet from her would never see the inside of a cell, but at least she had the opportunity to make him famous.
Things were beginning to calm down. Davis was awake now, so she headed to his room. “Detective?” She opened the door quietly.
“Agent Scully.” He motioned her closer. “Can you tell me what the hell is going on?”
She smiled and pulled a chair beside his bed, then sat down to bring him up to date.
He sighed, “I nearly got her killed. I hate rape cases, hate them with a passion. With such a great eye witness and no alibi . . . is she okay?”
“I haven’t wanted to disturb her. Her sister’s on the way. She’ll need to see a picture of the man in custody.” She stopped there, no need to burst the man’s bubble about prosecuting the perp.
“Is your partner out?”
She glanced at her watch. “I’m supposed to meet Nick at the station in twenty minutes to pick him up. They’re not going to give me any grief, are they?”
“No ma’am. I’ll call ahead. Look, I know I fu . . . screwed this up royally. I’m sorry.”
“Actually, having Mulder in custody during all of this was probably a blessing.“ She tried to hide her smile.
“He’s lucky to have you for a partner.”
“I’ve been telling him that for years.”
“Well next time have him call me.”
“I might just do that, Detective Davis.”
“Jerry.” He stuck his hand out and she shook it. “You better go spring him.”
“Good idea. I’ll be in touch.” She moved toward the door and he watched her. That Mulder guy was damned lucky.
She and Nick arrived at the precinct together. “You doing okay, Dana?”
“I will be when we get him out.”
Nick looked at her and chuckled. “Yeah, a long time in stir can really make a man miss his woman.”
Her glare quailed him, but he noted the heightened color in her cheeks.
They brought him out a side door. She didn’t see him, but he spotted her instantly and relaxed slightly for the first time since she’d left him earlier. Before he could reach her, a small disturbance broke out at the desk, and he watched the lawyer, her friend Nick, take her arm and move her out of the way.
He was moving then, away from his escort, to get to her.
“Scully.” They both turned to see him. She smiled and moved smoothly away from Nick.
“Hi. You okay?”
He nodded, “We need to get to the hospital. That woman - “
“Mulder, relax. You’ve been out of the loop. It’s over. The real rapist is in the hospital. I had to shoot him. Don’t worry, all of the evidence on him is in the capable hands of Agent Byers.”
For a moment a smile lit his face, then it faded. “You didn’t even need me.”
“Oh I wouldn’t say that.” She turned to Nick. “Thanks for everything and please apologize to your wife again for me.”
It was a clear dismissal - Nick got it. “Don’t wait until he’s arrested again to call me, Dana.” He placed a quick kiss on her cheek and Mulder’s eyes narrowed as he watched him leave.
“Mulder? Hey, Mulder.” She finally got his attention. “Ready to go home?”
“What about work?”
“I left a message on Skinner’s machine. We’ll have a lot of explaining to do, but I’m planning to take the rest of the day. Maybe catch up on some sleep.”
His eyes gleamed at that, “Want some company?”
He’d been kidding, but was stunned silent when she replied, “Yeah, I think I do.”
He blinked a couple of times, “Really?”
“Not for the ‘sleeping’ part G-man, but . . . maybe just to hang out for awhile.” And if I can get up the courage, I’ll ask you about November, she thought.
“Yeah, sounds like a plan Scully.” She turned to lead him out and felt his hand on its accustomed spot. “Scully?” She looked up at him. “Thanks.”
“No problem.” They left together.
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Mulder, Scully, the Lone Gunman and Skinner all belong to Chris Carter, 10-13 and Fox. No infringement intended.