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TITLE: Eternity
AUTHOR: Gabi Fisher
SPOILER WARNING: I don't think there are any.
CLASSIFICATION: VA
SUMMARY: Mulder painfully remembers Scully's death.
DISCLAIMER: No, silly. I don't own them. I'm just borrowing them. I'll consider returning them to CC when I'm done.
AUTHOR'S NOTES: Thank you for all your help, Annmaree.

*         *        *

It seems so long ago. Four months can seem like nothing at times, but it can also feel like an eternity. An eternity in heaven or an eternity in hell. Only what we are getting away from, day by day, can decide where we are headed. For me, it's definitely hell. Each new day is one more I have to push myself through, see through until evening when I can go home once more to dream of what I used to have and will never have again.

The gaping hole that's taking over where my heart once was grows larger every day that passes. Maybe one of these days it will engulf me and I will no longer have to deal with this pain. So many times before I've had to deal with loss, but never to this extent. When I lost my sister I was able to convince myself that one day I would see her again, so my pain was lessened. By convincing myself that she wasn't really dead, I did not let myself mourn for her, so I never opened my heart to pain. For many years I had been emotionally cut off from my father, so his death had little impact on me. The death of some of my friends and past partners hit me, but I never let myself grow too attached to anyone before. Scully was the first one. I had opened my heart to her, and inevitably I had been hurt.

I don't think I ever really believed it when people said that you only really appreciate something until it's gone until that day. I had taken Scully's always being there for me for granted. I had expected that she always would be there. I only wish she still was… Oh god, I miss her so much.

Her death had been a pointless, meaningless accident. A drunk driver hit her while she was jogging one Sunday morning. Right in front of a church. I had not seen her at the scene of the accident, so I can only imagine how her frail, broken body must have looked, carelessly thrown against the pavement. I can vividly imagine her lifeblood flowing out of her body, pooling around her on the ground. The driver had been no more than fined and reprimanded while Scully, my Scully, was left to fight death. Once she had arrived at the hospital, I had been called and I raced to be at her side. Skinner had arrived soon after me, quickly followed by Mrs. Scully. We anxiously waited to hear how surgery had gone. We had been told that Scully was out of surgery, but still in ICU. Her chances of survival were not good, the doctor told us. I wanted to scream at her for not being able to save Scully, but I knew that would do no good. She had done everything she could…

Only one person was allowed in the small ICU cubical at a time, so Mrs. Scully went in first. Skinner and I sat in the waiting room, both of us pretending to be reading one of the old magazines that fill the small tables accompanying the hard, plastic chairs. Through some silent agreement, I was to see Scully next, and then he could go in and see her. For that I am grateful.

After what seemed like an eternity, Mrs. Scully came out, somberly, and sat down next to me. "You can go see her now, Fox," she said. She had a wadded up Kleenex ball in her hand, but did not seem to notice the tears that stained her cheeks. I gave her hand what I hoped was a reassuring squeeze, and stood up.

I was completely unprepared for what I saw when I entered the room. I remembered the last time I had seen Scully in the hospital. She had been dying then, too. Of cancer. Only then, she had not been bloody and bruised. She was unconscious, but I could see her pain on her pale face. At first I was afraid to hurt her by touching her, but I gave in when I felt I could live no longer without touching her. I carefully reached out and held her hand. It was limp, but warm. I pressed it against my cheek, and a few lone tears fell.

"Scully…" I started. I had so much to tell her, to apologize for, to acknowledge. I was unsure where to begin. I decided to just jump in. "Scully, I'm not sure if you can hear me, but I hope you can. I wanted you to know that I am sorry for everything I have done wrong in the past. No one has ever meant more to me than you, and I need you to know that. I don't think I've told you that enough. And, I love you. With all my heart. I always have."

I bent over and kissed Scully's cheek. I hadn't done that enough either, I realized. Then all of a sudden heart monitors monotonous beeps turned into one steady sound. I knew what was happening, but I didn't want to believe it. For several seconds, nothing happened. There was a moment of utter peace between myself and Scully. It was so easy to pretend that nothing was wrong. Several doctors and nurses rushed into the room, but even then I couldn't believe that Scully was dead. She couldn't be. That was just something that couldn't happen. Not to my Scully. Not like that. Not an ungraceful accident. That was not the way it was supposed to happen…

At least if it had been cancer I would have had time to prepare myself for her impending death. I would have had a chance to say everything I had meant to. If it had been murder, I would have been able to throw myself into revenge. I would have done everything possible to apprehend and punish her killer. If she had been kidnapped or abducted, I would have been able to hope for her return. As with Samantha, I would have been able to tell myself that one day she would come back, and things would be the same way they had before. But it was none of those. It was a god damned fucking accident. A reckless driver. In front of a church no less. And I was not there for her. In her time of need, as with so many times before, I was not there. For that, I blame myself.

When she died, a part of me died with her. The part that cared. The part that gave a damn. The better part of me… I was not joking when I told her that she made me whole. I had experienced my life without her, when she had been abducted, and it was empty. I had been a cold, empty, unfeeling shell of a man. When she returned, she had brought back the rest of me with her. When she died, I could feel that same part of me she had taken with her last time ebb slowly out of my body, day by day, until nothing was left.

Without her here by my side, I'm not really sure why I'm still here and working. I work on cases while on autopilot. I barely stop to think about what I'm doing. Miraculously, however, cases still get solved, and I haven't been fired. Yet. I don't know how much longer Skinner will let me continue working like this. He has to know that my heart is no longer in my work. Not the way it used to be. Since Scully's death, I have even given up most hopes of ever seeing Samantha again. I think I realized that if Scully could die, that there were no such things as miracles. If Scully was gone forever, Sam had to be. No one returned after more than twenty years. At least, not as the same person that left.

In the past four months, I learned that hell is a state of waiting. A state of limbo, unsure of which way to go, what to do. Waiting, yet knowing nothing good is left in life, is worse than hell. It's where I am.

I thought I would be able to get myself out of that place by drowning myself in alcohol. For a while anyway, it helped. My thoughts were surrounded by a thick haze, and what little emotion I could still feel was numbed. Maybe that's why I got in the car to drive home. I'm still not sure.

The events of the past few hours seem surprisingly clear, considering the amount I drank. I remember how the raindrops spattered against the windshield. It reminded me of the tears I had rarely seen you shed. I remembered the slick roads. I almost fishtailed twice, but prevented it. I remember the tight curve, and the tree. It grew very big, very fast. The one thing I don't remember is the moment of impact. I suppose the few moments of blinding pain blocked that out. The pain was short lived, and my body was soon numb. I remember initially comparing it to my emotional state. I remember that I had not opened my eyes, because I did not want to see my mangled body. I couldn't move, so I knew something had to be wrong. People say that when about to die that their life flashes before their eyes. It's true. I saw happy times with Samantha when we were children, then her abduction and the depressing times following. Nothing memorable happened until you showed up in my basement office six years ago, when everything wrong with my life seemed to take a turn for the better. Each and every experience we shared fluttered across my quickly dimming mind. My last thoughts were of you. I hoped I'd see you again, when the pain finally went away. I tried to whisper, "I love you," but I'm not sure if my voice worked or not. It doesn't really matter. With that said aloud finally, I took my last breath. I was at last at rest for eternity.

*****

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