TITLE: SAVING THE SHARK
SPOILERS: "Jump the Shark"
SUMMARY: Post "Jump the Shark". That couldn't be the end. I'm a sucker for happy endings.
DISCLAIMER: To quote fellow gunfen, they are now ours. ..but I suppose legally they still are CC, Fox and 1013's.
Jimmy and Yves walked solemnly over to the black car, with Fletcher behind. Anderea sat in the back. Her eyes were red and puffy, mirroring Jimmy's. She was shaky and warn, explaining her absence from the grave site. She wasn't just mourning newly named national heroes, or close friends. Not that they weren't either, they were. She was mourning her whole family. Seeing the three folded flags tucked under Jimmy's arm, the last representations of the fallen comrades, caused another wailing spell.
Yves moved in to comfort her. Feeling responsible because of her father's motives. It is true that the sins of the father are placed on the child, no matter how much you work to correct them. She still felt the guilt.
"My you certainly are taking this badly," Fletcher commented from outside the car door.
Anderea glared up at him in disgust, "Why are you here?"
"No one told you...any of you?" he looked from one to the other.
"Told us what?" Yves asked.
Fletcher gave his fake shrug.
"If you are conning us again, god help you..." Jimmy's sorrow held a tinge of anger.
"He's not," Scully approached the car now, "Although it was agreed to keep it secret," she glared at Fletcher, getting his shrug in reply.
"What is it?" Anderea felt sick. She couldn't take more now. Hadn't this all been enough?
"They're not buried here," Scully was in her agent mode. Cold, calm, almost un-human. Purely for show. She was crashing underneath. She had lost her father, her sister and had Mulder leave, but never had to deal with it all in one blow. She felt for the young girl.
"They're not dead?" Anderea choked on her breath. She grasped at any straw of hope that she could, just to make all this go away.
"But the virus?" Yves was also grasping. She was attached to the three. They were very good at what they did, even if she never told them. And very brave. Which is what they proved by pulling the alarm, trapping them selves.
Scully put her hand up to prevent anyone else from speaking, "They're at a medical centre."
"Take me to them," Anderea's request was more of a demand, "Let me see them."
"That's not possible," Fletcher stepped in, "That area is highly restricted. They're there for medical research. Not just anyone can walk in."
Jimmy glared at the other man, "Why are you involved?"
"Someone had to convince THEM that there was a need for a cure. A defense if it fell into foreign hands," He glared quickly at Yves, "I got THEM to agree to help."
"Than you can take me to them," Anderea had climbed out of the car and stood in front of the older man, "Take me to them, please." She plead now, "Please."
* * * *
The building was cold and sterile, and eerily familiar to Anderea. Armed guards stood at all entrances and exits, men in white lab coats scurried behind the glass walls.
Fletcher flashed an access badge to a guard who nodded. He buzzed the three through. Jimmy had come along to make sure Fletcher wasn't lying to them again. Not a word had been spoken since they arrived. They walked through the glass doors and down a corridor.
"This isn't gonna be pretty," Fletcher warned in his usual callus, but with a slight sympathy.
Anderea shivered in the beyond cold halls, working to hold herself together. Jimmy also did his best.
They pressed through a pair of hospital doors to the first cubical.
"Byers is doing the best," Fletcher pulled back the curtain from the glass bubble enclosing Byers and his equipment.
He was still on the hospital style bed, only the sharp rise and fall of his chest. The I.V. line dripped a tinted liquid instead of the usual clear. The outline of his eyes, nostrils and mouth were an odd blue. Jimmy said it was close to the colour that oozed from the human time-bomb.
She silently wept watching the rise and fall of his chest.
"Langly is over here," Fletcher walked to the second curtained area.
Langly was in much the same condition as Byers, only was connected to more equipment.
"Ree," Anderea's weeping shook her. Watching the regulated motion of his breathing. "I love you baby. Come on, wake up," she spoke to him as if she was next to him. Like the inch of air tight glass could melt under her hand and she could touch him, "Look at me baby." She went silent for a moment only her sobbing was heard.
Jimmy patted her back until she quieted.
"Where's his glasses? He can't see without them," her voice was cracked, "He needs his glasses. He won't be able to see me when he wakes up without his glasses," she was shaking frantically and tears streamed again.
Jimmy held her now and she calmed until a machine in the third area began beeping wildly, and technicians came running.
"Is that Frohike?" Jimmy's face became even paler than it had been all day.
Fletcher nodded as they watched the white coats move back up the hall.
"Stable again," One reported.
Fletcher nodded again, "He's down the hall." He walked the two there. The curtain was already pulled away. Frohike was laid out like the other two, only the rest of his room was filled with machines: monitors, respirator, and a crash machine were standard.
Jimmy fell apart at this sight too. Frohike, the strongest, most stubborn one made helpless and fragile. He turned before that image became implanted in his mind. He wouldn't remember his mentor that way.
"Oh god," Anderea choked, but couldn't look away. It was worse than the obsession people have with car crashes. She was afraid to look away, to have him slip, "You can't leave me. We haven't been a family long enough. I can't let THEM take you away too." She sobbed openly again, than turned to Fletcher, angry, "You can't let them die! I won't let you!" She was screaming and hysterical. Jimmy had held her back, trying to calm her.
"YOU SAVE THEM!!" She screamed at Fletcher as guards swarmed them, dragging them out, "YOU SAVE THEM OR YOU'LL HAVE MORE THAN THREE LIVES ON YOUR HANDS!" She broke again into violent cries.
* * * *
They went to Scully's apartment. Neither of them could go back to the empty warehouse now, not after this day. And Anderea needed something to calm her down and Scully was a doctor. She had given her room to Anderea after giving her a sedative. While her and Jimmy had coffee.
"Can't they do something now? Like counter act it with another virus they have a cure for?" Jimmy commented in innocent conversation, "Like that black alien oil thing."
Scully thought for a moment, her mind drifting back to a case seven or eight years ago. Two parasites killing each other for the dominance over the host. "Anyone tell you, you have brilliant ideas?" She rose from her seat to the phone, leaving Jimmy confused.
* * * *
Anderea had stayed at Scully's. She couldn't go home, not without them being there. She tried to see the proverbial light in William's small face. But some days it just seemed too dark. She was alone one afternoon, just puttering around, attempting to keep her mind busy. When her fragile spirit was rocked by a knock on the door. She apprehensively approached the door, unsure of what could be on the other side. All her common sense from living in the warehouse told her to check the eyehole, but she didn't. She didn't fear much now at all, no real point to. She slowly undid the locks, not even hesitating before pulling the door open. It couldn't be any worse than what she had been through.
"Didn't I teach you better than that? Opening the door without checking the safety first?" Frohike scolded in a worn out voice. He was still fragile looking leaning on a cane and breathing a bit haggardly.
"My god," Anderea covered her mouth with her hand as tears water-fell down her face. Her hand shook as she reached to touch him, to know it was truly her uncle. She cried now in happiness, something she had only seen in movies and cheesy television dramas. She hugged him, probably too tightly.
"Are the rest of us invisible here?" Both Byers and Langly appeared from around the doorframe. Both looking haggard, but amazing from what she had seen last.
She shook and wept, finding it difficult to breath or speak.
"Can we at least go in to sit? I got tired just walking up the hall," Frohike smiled nudging her out of the way. Coming back from the dead does take a lot out of a guy. He had no clue how Mulder did it so often. He looked at Anderea's eyes, the blissful glow behind the tears as she watched the three re-enter her life, this life, and seeing that, he knew exactly why Mulder always came back.
(NEVER) THE END