Title: Things Undone 4: Alchemy of the Word, part 8b
Authors: Erynn & Sally
Email: inisglas@seanet.com, sallyh@flashcom.net
Archive: Ephemeral, Gossamer, LGM, FLO, all others ask first so we know where we're being kept.
Rated: R for grownup stuff
Spoilers: We assume you've seen the series
Category: Gunmen -- angst, humor, a little romance
Summary: Sometimes words are more important in our lives than we think.

Stories in the Things Undone series:

Things Undone, by Erynn; a 5-part story wherein the Gunmen deal with some unfinished business.
TU 2: Mending the Tears, by Sally; a 6-part story wherein Fro and Langly go to the ER.
TU 3: To Carry On, by Erynn; wherein the Gunmen begin to deal with the repercussions of their adventure.

Disclaimers: We don't own the boys, but we sure wish we did. They and the other characters from the series are owned instead by The Powers That Be at Fox and 1013, the boys were created by Morgan & Wong, and they're all controlled by the folks at The X Files and The Lone Gunmen series. Other characters are ours, some of whom are blatantly based on people we know, frequently at their request. Don't blame us, we're being coerced. Quotes from Rimbaud are used without permission. Deepest thanks to Mel, our Tech Consultant Queen and resident cartoonist.


Well, if this isn't weird or what. I'm supposed to go check on Byers'
current damsel in distress. Problem with his damsels in distress, they got a
way of getting him banged up real bad. Pisses me off. I think she's in 5.
Okay, Langly, be cool. I rap on the door. A lady's voice calls out real
quiet, "Yes?"

"Um, it's Langly. Like, I'm a friend of your pal Byers?" Wow, how's that for
sterling delivery?

She unlatches the door and lets me in. She's got one arm that's real swollen
but she offers the hand on the other one to me. "Hi, I'm Sari Thomas. And
you said your name was?"


"A pleasure, Mr. Langly." Not under these circumstances, but whatever. I
sure wish Deb was here right now. Shit. She'd have her patched up and she
could tell us what was up with Byers and we'd all feel a whole hell of a lot

"No misters. Makes me look around for my dad."

"Just Sari, then." She nods and goes over and sits in one of the chairs.

"You can call me Ringo if you like. Your arm, man. Looks like it's broken."
Take it from someone who's made many trips to the ER. I was no virgin when I
got clobbered a couple months back, just that that one hurt a lot more than
usual. I mostly end up with a broken bone here and there and a few stitches.
Skiing and bar fights are mostly responsible for my trips, not running into
mutant psychos like Landau.

"Yes, it is. The orthopedist just saw my X-rays and she's on her way to put
a cast on it." She looks real scared.

"It's not scary getting a cast on," I tell her, trying to make her not so

"No, it's not that. I've done this before. I'm worried about John. Have you
seen him? How is he?"

"He's gonna be okay, I think. But he's got like a torn retina, least that's
what they said upstairs. They're about to haul him off to the body shop and
fix him up. Just hope it's not something that's gonna make him go blind or
something." I wince. So does she.

"This is all my fault," she sighs big time. "If I hadn't insisted we go out
for dinner..."

"'Scuse me, but since when's it a crime to go out and eat where you like?"
If going to Burger King becomes a criminal offense, I'm gonna be the number
one fugitive in America.

"Since my ex decided he owns me." She sounds real bitter.

"He did this to you? And Byers?" Oh man, I am gonna kill that bastard. He
better not be anywhere near here, cause if he is, I am gonna wring his sorry
ass cowardly neck. Man, I hate guys that do that shit. Deb sees lots of it
where she works. Being an ER doc, she patches up lots of ladies who get beat
up by dirtbag guys, and then they go back to 'em to get beat up again. I
say, kill 'em all. Least when I go slapping people around, I save it for
guys my own size. Sometimes bigger. That doesn't work to my advantage, but
hey, it's at least kind of a fair fight.

"Unfortunately, it's not the first time." She looks real beaten down. "No
matter what I do, I seem to incur his wrath, and this time, someone else got
hurt too. This is all my fault." She's trying not to cry.

"Hey, hey, time out! What's this shit, it's your fault? Lemme get this
straight. You and Byers were gonna go have dinner. You were walking down the
street, minding your own damn business, and Mr. Ex comes out and starts
giving you the business, and this is your fault? That makes no sense!"
Jesus, doesn't she get it? I mean, she doesn't seem stupid, that's for sure.
"Man, I got this girlfriend, she's an ER doc, she sees this stuff all the
time. Makes her so damn mad when women say it's all their fault, 'cause it's

"But John's hurt because of me. He... he tried to keep Barry from getting to
me. Gods, Barry's twice his size. He got hit so hard." She looks so damn
down. I gotta cheer her up.

"Look, Byers, he's tougher than he looks, he'll be okay." Least I hope he
will be. This is so weird. Like before I started talking to her, I was all
bent out of shape at her for getting him into this, but then it's like I
talk to her and I see, she didn't do shit except try to live her life.
There's a knock on the door. "Maybe that's your doc," I say. Nope, no luck.
Just Frohike.

"How's John?" Sari asks him frantically.

"He's in surgery. They think he'll be fine. How are you?" I was thinking
Fro'd be real mad at her for getting him into this too, but he hates jerks
who do this shit, maybe he knows. He was over there working today.

"I'm... I'm okay."

Oh yeah, sure she is. "Y'know, it's a good thing I don't do guns, 'cause
lemme tell you, I'd take him out, right now," I tell her. She just looks

Frohike gives this real evil grin. "Oh, we're going to take him out, all
right. But not that way. We're going to make it much, much more painful for
him." Hmm. You know, it's fun to be around Frohike when he gets like this.
He gets a bug up his ass about getting even with someone, and man, that's
entertainment. He puts an arm around her back and she leans her head on his
chest. "You want to go ahead with this, dear? You're all right with it?" She
kinda whimpers. I don't know if it's the arm or what, but she's really in
pain. Give the girl some morphine already, I feel like screaming but there's
nobody here to yell at except Frohike, and not only does he not have any
morphine, he never listens to me anyway. Lucky for us, the orthopod shows up
to do her arm, because I'm dying to know what old Frohike's got in mind.

Real quiet, Frohike gives me the background on what we're going to do. This
sounds like fun. And it probably won't involve any field trips. I hope. I
think I'm done with field trips for a while. We hang out while Sari gets her
arm patched. It's no fun getting a cast on, but she's cool, no screaming.
They give her some Vicodins to take home. Lucky girl. Maybe she'll have some
left. I'm all out. I don't need 'em like I did when I first got hurt, but
Deb won't give me any more, and sometimes they come in handy. I love

"Do you have a place you could go tonight, maybe stay with a friend?"
Frohike asks her when she's done being put back together and we're on our
way to the waiting area. She's got a cool sling. It's got tropical fish all
over it. I never got one that cool. I'm jealous.

She shakes her head and gets this really determined look on her face, sorta
like the one Byers gets when he digs in his heels. "I'm not going anywhere
right now. Not until I'm sure John's okay."

"It's going to be a wait," Frohike warns her. "They estimated it could take
anywhere from two to three and a half hours to do the surgery on his eye."
We all grab seats.

"I don't care. Besides, if you want to know the truth, I'm really nervous
about leaving here on my own. Barry knows where my friends live, and...

"We wouldn't think of letting you do that," Frohike says, rubbing her back
again. She doesn't flinch. She obviously doesn't think he's a troll. "But
you do need a safe place to stay."

"Hey, she could stay in Byers' room," I offer. Hey, why not? We've got a
secure place, Byers has the cleanest room, and he won't be using it tonight.
Unlike Frohike and me, he changes his sheets more than once a month, and he
puts his dirty laundry in a basket. We just leave ours on the floor.

Frohike doesn't look too sure about that, but he agrees. "Yeah, maybe you're
right, Langly. Perhaps you should take her there now. She looks as if she
could use some rest."

"No. I'm not leaving until I see John and know if he's going to be all
right." Stubborn chick, that's for sure. Well, probably important if she's
gonna be around us for any length of time. Sounds like she might. So we
wait. And we talk. She's a lobbyist, environmental type. She's into a lot of
things. After a while she's kinda groggy and leans on me to rest. I let her,
and put an arm around her to make it a little easier. These waiting room
chairs suck, and if leaning makes her more comfortable, that's ok with me.
She smells a little like sandalwood or something. It's kinda nice. She asks
Fro to crack a Vicodin in half for her and takes it.

We're just hanging when a familiar face shows up. "Hey Mulder, what're you
doing here?" I ask him. He's got on his FBI windbreaker. For some reason,
that gives me an idea. Frohike was talking about trumping up some federal
charges on Sari's ex. And we're gonna do that. But maybe Mulder could find
something real to make it even more effective. Hmm, Mulder being useful.
Talk about a new concept.

He glares at us. "Next time Byers gets hurt, would you mind telling me where
so I don't have to call every damn hospital in the city? How's the boy

"You know as much as we do. In the meantime, join the party," Frohike
motions to him to sit with us. "By the way, this is Ms. Sari Thomas. Ms.
Thomas, this is Fox Mulder."

"Please, guys, just Sari. I'm really not into formal." She looks sad and
exhausted, but offers her hand to Mulder.

He takes it carefully. He can see she's hurting pretty bad. "Hi, Sari," he
says gently. "Just call me Mulder. Were you there when Byers got hurt?"

She nods and sniffs a little. "I'm the reason he got hurt," she says

Me and Fro, man, we're both all over that in a hot second. "Her ex did
this," Frohike says.

Sari describes what went down, and this is the first time we've heard the
whole story. Byers wasn't talking much when I left Frohike with him, and Mel
doesn't add anything to the story, so I guess we're going to have to get
Byers' version when he's out of surgery. It sounds pretty ugly. Mulder's
just all quiet, probably doing his profiler thing.

"So the local PD got a good description of him, and there was at least one
witness who was willing to give them a report?" Mulder's looking at her with
those green eyes of his. He usually hypnotizes the chicks and they get all
gooey on him, but Sari doesn't react with that hormonally charged sigh that
I've heard from other females in his presence. She still looks really bad,
even though she's been resting some.

"Yes. I hope that they find the bastard soon. He threatened to kill John,
and I believe he'd do it. He was only about six blocks from my apartment,
and I think he was looking for my car so that he could figure out where I
live. For all I know, he may be still waiting around there for me to come

"Now, you know we're not going to let him find you. You're staying with us
tonight," Frohike says. He reaches out and runs a hand along her shoulder.

"She's staying with you guys? She's a lot braver than anybody else I know,"
Mulder says with a smirk. "What do you know about these boys?" he asks her.

"They're here for me, they've offered me shelter for the night, and they're
very concerned about John. At the moment, that's all I really need to know,"
Sari says, shifting a little closer to me. She shivers a little, and I think
she's getting cold, even though she has her coat around her like a blanket.
But there's a tiny smile on her face that says she knows he's teasing us.
She's been really cool about all this, even though I can see how hard it's
being on her. She's like totally afraid, but she won't run, and she's really
worried about Byers, but despite all that, she's not cracking. This chick is
so cool.

I look at Frohike and Sari, then over at Mulder. "So, like, Mulder -- I've
got this idea..."

end part 8b