Feedback:You want to do it, I know you do.Come
on it is so easy!
Summary:Scully suffers a breakdown when Mulder ditches her.Frohike proves himself as Scully’s protector and confidant.
I would be honored, just let me know.
Disclaimer:The recognized characters are used Without Prejudice and are the property of C. Carter,
Fox and the wonderful actors who breathed life into written words, most notably G. Anderson and D. Duchovny who were able
to make us believe in the improbable.No Infringements of these copyrights are
intended, and are used here without permission.The story and before unknown
characters belongs to me.
To Kim Knight, you are the best, thank you.To my Dennis, enough said.To CC and Company, who created the X-Files.Lastly, but my no means least, to the readers, you make this hobby of mine have meaning.
had just gone from the office when it started.Scully didn’t know what
was happening to her but she couldn’t control the shaking.It started in
her hands and moved up her arms then to the rest of her body.She was cold, freezing
actually, but it was 85 degrees in the office.Her mind was a jumble; she couldn’t
concentrate on anything and her breathing became erratic. If she didn’t know better she’d have thought she was
in shock but that didn’t make any sense.She was in their office catching
up on paperwork not in the field tracking monsters.
Katherine Scully was in the grip of a class A panic attack.She tried to make
her mind focus so she could try and figure out what caused it.
been fine, thought a slight bit grumpy because Mulder hadn’t done any of his portion of the paperwork for the last three
weeks and now they were being hassled by Skinner and accounting to have it done by the end of the day.That was frustrating but not out of the ordinary.
the phone rang and Mulder answered it.After his usual greeting of ‘Mulder’,
his voice got low and he turned away from her like he always did when one of his shaky informants called.This particular tone alerted her that it was that blonde, Marita.When he hung up, he grabbed his coat and was out the door without a word before she even had time to realize what was
going on.Two heartbeats later she started to shake.
Cook entered the office, saw Dana and knew something was wrong; seriously wrong.Kim
asked Scully what was wrong but she was shaking so bad the answer was unintelligible and she only made out ‘gone’
and ‘won’t be back.’Kim took Dana’s hands in an effort
to calm the agent and realized they were extremely cold.Kim removed her jacket
and draped it over the woman then called AD Skinner.
arrived and couldn’t believe the scene before him.“Kim, have you
tried to locate Agent Mulder?”
heard Scully whisper, “Mulder gone.”They waited but nothing more
sir, we were supposed to have lunch, but when she didn’t show I came looking for her.When I got here she was like this.I didn’t want to leave her for
too long.I called you then I tried to get her to drink some water but I had
to hold the cup for her.Sir, we have to do something, call security or 911?”
I think I should take her to the hospital. I don’t think Agent Scully would want anyone to know about this.Help me get her out of here without anyone seeing?”
got Scully to the AD’s car and strapped in.Kim was going to see about
took Scully to Georgetown where she was given a battery
of tests that ruled out any neurological or physical cause for her condition.They
had a psychologist look at her and he arranged for her to be transferred to a small but highly regarded facility twenty minutes
outside the DC limits.Dr. Phelps confided to Skinner that it was the place where
the politico’s and their families went on those occasions they DIDN’T want to be seen.
is how three days after her initial attack Dana Scully was in a private hospital, sitting in a rocking chair in her room looking
vacantly out passed the rolling lawn toward the ocean.
the drive to Georgetown Scully, had only spoken once; to beg him not to call her mom.Through her broken speech Skinner was able to make out that Mrs. Scully had recently left for a long trip in Ireland and Scully didn’t
want to ruin it for her.She also asked that the Gunmen make sure her plants
were watered and Mulder’s fish be fed.Skinner would have laughed at her
priorities if the situation hadn’t been what it was.
had only spoken once more and that wasn’t to him but to her two doctors, Phelps and Grant.Skinner wasn’t sure what they may have gotten from the interview but he hoped it was something that
pointed them toward Scully’s condition.They did tell him that she was
extremely concerned for her partner.
had been able to piece together the occurrences leading up to Scully’s breakdown.He’d had an early meeting with the two agents and there didn’t appear to be any issue at that time.Kim told him she’d phoned Scully around eleven and arranged to go to lunch at
.Scully had not shown by , so she tried calling.There had been no answer so she went to find her.A data dump of the phone
records showed that the X-Files extension received an outside call at that lasted three minutes.They assumed that the call
was a catalyst for Mulder’s disappearance and, subsequently, Scully’s current condition.
still had not been able to locate Mulder.Skinner had placed traps on the office,
Mulder’s and Scully’s phones and had agents keeping tabs on their apartments.They had been able to trace the location where that outside call originated.It was a prestigious address in New York but it turned out to be a dead end.The owners were
and had been for two weeks.
manifests listed a Marshall F. Luder on the three-thirty shuttle to New
showed that ‘Luder’ was on the flight but there was nothing after that.No car rental, no hotel or any other purchases could be traced to either Mulder or Luder.Skinner even got Mulder’s three strange friends involved and they came up empty.Skinner resigned himself to waiting until Mulder returned on his own or they were called to come save his
was functioning on a very basic level.She could eat, but she didn’t eat
much.She took care of her own personal hygiene needs without help.She needed sleep aids for her to get any sleep.
Frohike appointed himself Scully’s personal nurse.Sitting with her, reading
to her and forcing her to take walks around the facility.Sometimes, while they
were sitting together, he just talked to her.He’d tell her the latest
news or relate some anecdote.He asked her questions that she never answered
but he continued on as if she had.Skinner noticed that even though she never
spoke, her eyes softened when she looked at the little man and occasionally rewarded him with a small smile.
other two, Byers and Langly, did ‘their thing’ and there was finally a break.Byers just reported to Skinner that Marshall F. Luder would be on the shuttle that evening and that he would pick him up
and bring him to the facility.
was surprised to find Byers waiting for him as he disembarked and he was even
more surprised when his quiet and reserved friend stopped him in he tracks with, “where the hell have you been?”
drove and he called Skinner as they neared the facility telling him to meet them in the lobby.Mulder jumped from the van and ran into the lobby.He tried to push past
Skinner but two orderlies stopped him.
need to see her!”No one budged.
stood in front of him with his arms crossed.“She needed to know where
you were but you couldn’t be bothered.Now you and I are going to meet
with her doctors.Only they will determine if you see her or not.Right now they are not inclined to be very accommodating.”
and Skinner sat and waited for Doctors Amelia Grant and Dennis Phelps, neither saying anything.The two doctors entered
and seated themselves across from the agents.Dr. Grant related some of Scully’s
condition to Mulder.“Agent Mulder, from what Dana was able to tell us
you received a phone call then took off without telling her what it was about, where you were going or how long you would
be gone.She indicated that this seems to be a pattern with you, is that right?”
wanted to defend himself but the doctor stopped him, “please understand, Agent, we are not accusing you of anything.We are only interested because this seems relevant to Dana’s condition.”
had to admit that he was known to take off without keeping her informed.He also
had to admit that quite often he was in danger during these trips and many times he got hurt.Yes, Scully quite often had to find him; sometimes to bail him out or patch him up.Mulder was quite concerned when both doctors kept nodding and saying things like ‘I see’ or ‘yes,
that explains a lot.’
Grant began the session asking about Deep Throat, Mr. X and Marita and Mulder told her about them being informants.
these ‘informants’ would give you evidence and you would pursue an investigation?” Grant asked.
always, sometimes they just gave me clues or pointed me toward something.”Mulder
well, what about this latest incident?Dana said you got a call and ran out.Would you elaborate a little?”
looked to Skinner hoping his superior then at the doctors.“I really don’t
see the reasoning--”
Mulder, Dana Scully is down the hall and this is a psychiatric facility what more reasoning do you need?Answer the damned question.”
was shaken by Skinner’s outburst.“I got a call from Marita, I won’t
reveal her last name.She told me about a possible lead on a case.I investigated and it turned out to be nothing.”
didn’t inform Dana about what this Marita told you?”Mulder’s
head hung and he shook it indicating no.“This is a pattern when these
informants gives you a lead, am I correct?”Mulder only nodded, he’d
never thought of it as a pattern.“They never need to provide proof to
you, you just take their word?”Again Mulder nodded.“But Dana always needs to provide proof for you to believe her.”It wasn’t really a question but Mulder nodded again and Skinner glared at him.
Phelps took over the questions and asked, “Agent Mulder could you tell us who,” he referenced his notes and continued,
“Bambi. . . That can’t be right is that right.Is that right, Amelia?”
was one of the names she said.”She was reading down the list of names.“Yes, right here.Bambi Berenbauman entomologist.”She
pointed to the name in her notes.
man chuckled.“Parents, sometimes
you just wonder where their heads- -,” Dr. Grant pointed at something on the paperwork and Dr. Phelps stopped talking
and looked at Mulder.“Oh, well uh, back to this list.Bambi, Angela, Phoebe, Marty, Diana, Karin, Lucy, Marita . . . oh, we already spoke about her, where was
I?Oh, yes, Melissa, Ephesian not Scully, Dana was very adamant about that, and
Samantha are and how they relate to you and Dana?”
related who each of the women were and how he knew them.
for each of these women you have either physically or emotionally abandoned Dana, or at least that was her perception of the
situation.That’s interesting, very interesting.Okay, Agent Mulder, what can you tell us about something called a Seraphim and Nephilin?”
told them about the four young handicapped girls and what happened to them.
see; what about a boy called Kevin Kryder?”
Mulder explained the case.Skinner listened to the doctor’s questions and
was quite impressed how much they’d been able to piece together from Scully’s disjointed ramblings.
well, Dana told us that in these cases, she believed in the paranormal explanations for them but you dismissed her, is that
thought she was too involved and had lost her perspective.”
doctors both just nodded but Skinner couldn’t contain himself. “You,
of all people, telling someone they are losing perspective?Mulder, how many
times have you gotten so personally involved you couldn’t see what was right in front of you?”
we are not here to lay blame but to understand what Dana is going through.I
think we’ve got a pretty good idea what caused this problem.It seems to
have been building for quite a while.Dana is a reserved person and hides her
emotions.We think it was something she developed as a coping mechanism for all
the moves her family made while she was growing up.
and she are extremely close yet she doesn’t feel secure in your relationship.She seems to have serious trust issues and thinks you don’t really trust her.That somehow all these women are your attempts at replacing her.”
began to protest but Dr. Grant stopped him, “Agent Mulder, we didn’t say it was true and if we asked Dana she’d
deny it but this is what she really perceives.Every time you leave her behind
her subconscious interprets that as your way of abandoning her, of getting rid of her.She is also terrified that if something were to happen to you she couldn’t get to you.And every time she believes in something outside the realm of her science and you dismiss it, she sees
that as another form of rejection.These issues have been building and with this
last one her mind couldn’t take it anymore and she shut down.”
doctors exchanged glances and Dr. Phelps said, “I think we have everything we need for now.Thank you for coming and being so candid.”
saw what their questions revealed.There were clear patterns in his relationship
with Scully and they were eating her alive.
asked when he could see her.The two doctors looked at each other and Phelps
nodded to his colleague.“We will take you to see her now but we want to
observe her reaction to you.We have to warn you it may be slightly jarring for
let me in there and promise that no matter what she does, no one will separate us.”
got to Scully’s room and Mulder looked in through the observation window.Scully
was seated in a rocking chair by the window with her legs pulled up to the chair seat, her arms hugging them and her head
was resting on her knees.Frohike was reading to her.Scully looked so small in her robe, Mulder just wanted to run and hold her.
got Frohike to come out.Mulder watched from the observation window.If Scully noticed Skinner or Frohike’s departure, she gave no indication.
Frohike saw Mulder he said sadly, “you caused this,” and walked away.Mulder
watched his friend’s retreating back and his level of guilt and sadness trebled.
Mulder, are you ready?” Asked Dr. Grant and Mulder walked toward the door.
he called gently.He saw her body stiffen for a moment then relief took over
and all her limbs relaxed.Scully turned toward him and he heard a deep sigh.Her head fell and the tears started to fall as he heard her quietly say, “he’s
home, thank you God, he’s home.”
slowly walked to her.He hesitated for a moment then knelt down and took her
in his arms.“Oh, Scully.I’m
so sorry; I never knew it did this to you.”
you did but it didn’t matter,” Scully said in very quiet but not accusatory way; just a simple statement of the
facts as she knew them.
pulled her tighter and although she didn't fight him, she didn't hold him either.Mulder admitted to himself that she was right, he rarely
thought about her when he got information.When he did think about her it was
more about her skills than Scully herself, he admitted in his mind.
he never dreamt it would tear at her like this.No, that was a lie.He knew she agonized over his disappearances.Somehow she
always seemed to find him, except this time.He was ashamed to admit,he’d been a little angry when he finally turned on his phone and found that she hadn’t called
him, nor were there any messages on his machine at home when he checked them.He
knew it was irrational, he was the one who took off and turned off his phone so she wouldn’t interrupt; but still he
had been mad.
held her and stroked her hair until she fell asleep then he carried her to the bed and watched her until Dr. Grant came in
and asked him to come out.Frohike returned to his self appointed duty of watching
watched her sleep from the observation window.Scully was lying on her back but
her sleep was fitful.Her right hand was in a fist and she kept raising the arm
and slamming it on the bed.He’d learned from the doctors that this was
the first time she’d slept without medication since she’d been admitted.
watched as Frohike tried to calm her, gently taking her right hand in an attempt to still her.
walked up and watched with Mulder but said nothing; the unspoken accusation hung between them.Finally Mulder spoke.“I never thought Scully would break.She is the strongest person I’ve ever met.She’s always been so in control, Doc Ice, the Ice Queen.”
cracks under pressure, Mulder.It can break apart into thousands of shards.Did you know she’d been seeing Karen in EAP?”
turned from the window and looked at Skinner.“No, she never said anything.”
just found out yesterday.Karen heard what happened and called me.It seems Scully knew something was not quite right and she scheduled some sessions.She did this periodically.When things became overwhelming
Scully would go in.Karen said she asked Scully to bring you into some of the
sessions but she refused.She didn’t think you would do it and she was
afraid of your reaction.Karen said that Scully’s exact words were, ‘I
can’t afford to give him another reason to doubt me.’”Skinner
looked at Mulder’s reflection in the glass then walked away.
week went by and Scully made minimal improvement.She talked, but only rarely
and mostly only to Frohike.She never spoke with Mulder.
joined everyone at the conference table taking a seat between Mulder and Byers.“I’m
so glad you could make it Mr. Skinner,” commented Dr. Phelps.“Let’s
get started shall we?”Not waiting for an answer he plodded on.“We need to discuss options for Dana.She has made progress
but she is a long way from a complete recovery.I think everyone would agree
with that.She needs time and rest more than anything else.She could stay at this facility but she doesn’t require drugs or medical treatment.She does need therapy, but until she rests and becomes more communicative, any attempt at therapy would
be a complete waste.Also, there is no telling how long she will need to regain
her strength and abilities.”Phelps consulted his notes for a moment then
continued.“Mr., excuse me, Agent Mulder has made a generous offer to take
time off and take Dana to a house he owns in Massachusetts and he assures us that this would not cause any burden on him financially.He also has the legal right to do this because he holds Dana’s legal and medical POAs . . .“
Frohike said forcefully.He pulled himself in check.“I don’t think so, Mulder.”Mulder turned
and gave him a questioning look.“Mulder, your actions, whether you understood
or not, are at least part of why she’s here.We all know how much Scully
means to you but all it would take is one phone call with the promise of a lead about Samantha and what would you do?Don’t just automatically say you’d ignore it and stay with Scully, ‘cause
I gotta tell you, history is against you.”
shoulders sagged and Frohike started talking again, “I’m not saying no completely, just not that plan; I suggest
we go with you.”His hands waved to Byers and Langly.“That way if something comes in we can check it out and if you need to go, I will stay with her.”
Grant nodded at the new idea.“Also,
right now Dana seems to relate to Mr. Frohike more than anyone else.I think
it would set her back to remove the one person who she feels comfortable with.”
two vehicles drove up to the large house; Mulder and Scully in Mulder’s car and the Gunmen following in their VW van.Skinner had arranged for them each to have a leave of absence with an open return
date.He also asked if he could visit a time or two just to see for himself how
she was doing.Scully slept most of the trip and when she was awake she didn’t
say anything.She just watched Mulder almost as if she feared he would be gone
if she looked away.She had improved since he first saw her, but she still had
a long way to go.
guys settled in and they wouldn’t let Scully help, so she walked around the house exploring.Mulder found her in his father’s study examining the books.He watched her as she ran her fingers along the bindings reading the titles, stopping occasionally and pulling out
a book that interested her then she’d put it back.“I know you are
there, Mulder.Please don’t treat me like cracked glass.”
smiled.He should have known she would feel him. “Not cracked glass Scully,
so now I’m a toilet.”Mulder began to protest but she turned to him
and smiled. “Gotcha!”It was the most normal she’d been since
just came to get you to show you to your room so you can unpack before Frohike.He’s
been dying to get into your unmentionables.”
guided her into the master suite.“Mulder, this should be your room, let’s
Scully, I want you to have this room.Come over here.”She followed him to the window at the far side of the suite.The
window overlooked the back lawn and to the ocean.The view was so beautiful it
took her breath away.“Impressive isn’t it?Besides you won’t have to share a bathroom with any of us.” Scully’s face registered
her revulsion at the thought and Mulder pulled her into a tight hug.She pulled
back and walked to the center of the room and refused to look at him.
was standing just inside the doorway with Scully’s bags and witnessed the exchange.He motioned for Mulder to come.“Agent Scully, I have your cases.Come on, Mulder, let’s finish unloading the car and leave Scully to unpack.”
followed reluctantly and Byers stopped as they got to the steps.“Mulder,
she doesn’t know where she stands with you, give her time.She doesn’t
understand.I mean she’s wondering if you are hugging her like that because
of her condition.”He put his hand on Mulder’s arm.“I know you are reacting on a personal level, as her friend, but I think you need to try and put
that aside and start seeing things as a psychologist would.Or, at least, some
amalgamation of the two.
got everything unpacked and Byers and Frohike went to the store for groceries.They
returned two hours later and the four men started arguing about dinner.They
were all quite tired and didn’t feel like cooking so they decided to order in but couldn’t decide between Italian,
Chinese, Mickey’s Clam Shack or something from the deli in town.
of them noticed Scully slip into the kitchen and start pulling out various food items.She had the glazed chicken in the oven, the rice started and half the salad items chopped before they realized she
was there.She noticed the conversation ceased and just said, “I vote for
Scully cooking and since I’ve started I say I win.”Frohike walked
to her, placing his hand on her shoulder and she covered it with hers.“I
need to do this. Do you understand?”She spoke in slightly broken tones.
I do.Anything I can help with?”
them out of my way and make them stop watching me.”The corners of her
mouth turned up and she looked at him out of the corner of her eye. “It
really bugs the crap out of me.”
next several days found the group getting accustomed to their shared space.Langly
found a hammock at a store in town and he and Byers started to put it together on the rear porch.Scully, Mulder and Frohike watched the progress, if it could be called that, with merriment as the two
men fought with the framework.Phrases like, ‘pipe A into pipe B,’
and ‘no, that isn’t how it looks in the picture’ were heard as they argued over the directions.
Langly fell and almost hurt himself.Scully stood and made her way to the pile
of green pipe and Langly.He waved her away, saying he was okay but she shook
her head and tossed the directions away.She then proceeded to build the frame.Within minutes she had the entire thing together and was attaching the hammock. Once
she’d made sure it was secured with a couple not very gentle tugs, she plopped her rear in it and snuggled in.
said it for all of them, “damn, she’s good.”
was making progress; she joined in conversations and expressed interest in exploring the area surrounding the house.She tried to read but always gave up after a few minutes because she just couldn’t
concentrate.Scully was never one to watch television, she tried though, but
had less success than reading.The banality of the shows made it a torture.
guys had brought some videos along but nothing that interested her.Car chases
and explosions were not her style.They offered to rent something for her but
she declined. How could she explain her affection for The Women, Torch Song Trilogy, Pygmalion, Philadelphia Story or any
of the other eclectic titles she loved?
day Byers took a chance and rented Gone With the Wind.He’d been
so excited about getting something he was sure she’d enjoy; Scully just couldn’t tell him she hated that movie.She never understood how many women she knew that gushed over the scene where Rhett
Butler carries Scarlet up the stairs.They always said it was so romantic while
she saw it as rape.And Scarlet was as disgrace to women of any time frame.She didn’t say anything to Byers because it would hurt him so she vowed to endure
moved to take a seat in the overstuffed chair when Mulder redirected her.“I
called dibs on the loveseat for us, Scully.”They sat and Mulder put his
arm around the back just lightly touching her.She involuntarily tensed and she
knew he felt it but Mulder didn’t move his arm.
little commune had been at the Mulder home for almost two weeks and Mulder’s cell phone rang.It wasn’t the first call he’d received but it was the first one that he turned from the others
to take.A few minutes later he left the room.Mulder was the only one who didn’t see Scully’s reaction.She
closed in on herself.“He’s
going to leave.”
Dana, we have an agreement.If a lead comes in, he let’s us check it out
first.”Frohike tried to calm her.
smiled at him and took his hand.“Did you hear his voice?That is how he talks to her, Marita.She has a siren call
for him.He’ll come back and sometime later he’ll make an excuse
to go to town for something.Maybe a run?Mulder will be gone before the hour is up.”
promise he won’t,” Frohike said with a slight desperation in his voice.
smiled slightly, “Frohike, we’ll play it by your rules but if he leaves and is gone longer than an hour you will
take me someplace else.Is that agreed?”She sounded so sure of herself, Frohike was almost sure she was right.But
Mulder had promised, so he nodded.“And don’t any of you prompt him.”
rose and headed toward the stairs and Byers asked where she was going.Scully
looked down before answering. “To pack.”
came back in the room but was too occupied with his own thoughts to notice the looks he was getting or that Scully was missing.Fifteen minutes later he announced he needed to go to town to see about something.
men watched him leave and Langly said it for all of them, “not even thirty minutes.Scully was right.”
men got up and started toward the stairs.No one said anything but they were
all going to pack their things.Langly had said it, Scully was right.An hour and fifteen minutes later, with their bags all stowed, the ancient VW van awaited its passengers.
couldn’t believe himself.How could he have just left like that?He raced back.He pulled in behind the van and jumped out,
looked into the van and bolted up the stairs.Frohike, Byers and Langly were
standing in the doorway when Mulder got to it.
faces broke into large grins and Frohike pounded Mulder on the shoulder.“Your
back, you actually came back.”Mulder’s face spoke the question for
him and Frohike continued.“After that phone call, Scully was sure that
you had gone after some lead.But she was wrong.”
pulled away.“No, she wasn’t wrong. I
did go.I was halfway to where I was supposed to meet Marita and I realized what
I’d done.I turned around.”Mulder’s head hung so low it almost touched his chest.“I
quiet voice came from the bottom of the stairs, “but this time you came back.”Scully moved to Mulder and took his face in her gentle hands.“This
time you came back,” she repeated.“You came back for me.That makes all the difference.”
looked in her eyes and saw, for the first time in a long time, they were missing the sadness and distrust.A tear pooled in the corner and it was like the ice had melted.Mulder’s
hands made their way to the sides of her face, mirroring hers.
herded the others out to the van to unload and to give Mulder and Scully some privacy.
back, you came back.”They heard her say.
few minutes later the guys came back in with the bags and the hallway was empty.Frohike
saw them through the French doors on the back porch just holding each other.
Author’s Notes:This story came to me when I read someone’s
comment on Scully’s strength and all the troubles she’s been put through by CC and Co.
Depression is an insidious disease.It sneaks in so quietly and slowly
that not only does the sufferer not realize what’s happening those around them don’t notice either.It isn’t until something drastic occurs that everyone looks at it and sees the small changes.Sadly loved ones begin to blame themselves for not noticing or not commenting on something
they did notice.
Recovery is just as illusive as the onset and I don’t think you ever really recover completely, but that might
not be all bad because it keeps you alert.Slowly you begin to function and you
gain confidence again.Sleep returns and you can actually read a book and follow