Author: Traci PM
On the way to a case, things take a tragic twist when Doggett and Reyes find themselves in the midst of a mass car pile-up on the beltway.Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Drama - J. Doggett & M. Reyes - Words: 2,695 - Reviews: 8 - Favs: 2 - Published: 03-08-05 - id: 2296983
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Disclaimer: Uh, yeah, not mine as usual. Belong to 1013 productions, Chris Carter, etc.
Spoilers: All seasons but mainly season 9.
Author: Traci DRR
Summary: On the way to a case, things take a tragic turn for Doggett and Reyes when changing weather conditions leave them in the midst of a mass car pile-up on the Beltway. John's concern for Monica's injuries quickly turns to utter anguish for Monica.
"It's snowing, John."
"It's winter, Monica."
"It was sixty-two yesterday."
"You said that already."
"Just stating the obvious."
Monica Reyes sighed as they drove along the Beltway. Rolling her head to the side, she glanced at her partner, Special Agent John Jay Doggett. "You see nothing bizarre about this at all, do you?"
His nearly-transparent blue eyes quickly found hers for a brief moment and he smirked. "Not everything is an X-file, Mon."
She smiled and returned her attention to the world outside the passenger window. "I never said it was. I was merely commenting on the bizarre weather."
"Which exit are we supposed to take again?" John asked, clearly becoming frustrated by the fact that, despite the snow not sticking to the roadway, people still seemed to feel an overwhelming need to suddenly drive twenty miles per hour.
"Ummm…." Flipping through the folder, Monica stopped and looked up. "Um, you're not going to like this."
"We passed the exit."
"What!" His knuckles whitened as he tightened his hold on the steering wheel. "You're telling me we have to turn around somehow and go back through this mess?"
"I'm sorry, John. Do you want me to drive?"
"No. No, it's fine." He gritted his teeth and maneuvered to the far right lane and exited off only to get stuck in another traffic jam at the bottom of the off-ramp. "Why are we doing this again?"
"Because Leyla Harrison looks up to you and you are a big softy sometimes," Monica teased.
With narrowed eyes, he glanced over at her once more, this time letting the gaze continue a little longer before having to return his attention to the road.
"Come on, it's not that bad. It's a day out of the office," she offered.
"In rain, then snow and now moronic drivers. Yes, this is much better than sitting behind a dry desk with no stress." The traffic light turned red and he sighed. "Again, I ask, why are we doing this? As I recall, last time she dragged us out on a wild-goose chase it was also snowy."
Placing the folder on the seat between them, Monica stretched. "It wasn't a wild-goose chase after all – it just wasn't what she had initially thought," she reminded him.
"And you almost died as I recall. And I almost got killed the first time."
Monica's brown eyes widened. "You?"
The light turned green and he proceeded to make a left turn and get back on the Beltway. "Yeah, it was when I was partnered with Scully… you were still in New Orleans."
"What happened?" Though he was sitting beside her quite alive, concern was still evident in her voice.
"Nothing like what happened to you, that's for sure. It was nothing really. Leyla and I got stuck in some underground tunnel with a killer."
"And you consider that nothing?"
"After working on the X-Files, yeah, I consider that nothing." Merging back on the Beltway, he settled into the speed of the traffic. "Now, which exit again?"
"Forty-nine. You want Route 66 West."
Within moments the exit ramp was in sight. "How did we miss this?"
Grinning, Monica said, "Because neither one of us thought to check on the new exit numbers since they changed them. The directions here say Exit 9."
Doggett merged off at what was now Exit 49. "Why do they have to change things just when we get used to them?" he muttered. "Do we follow this all the way to Front Royal then?"
"Yeah." Monica suddenly gripped the side of the door as John slammed on the brakes on the now snow-covered highway.
He managed to stop just short of hitting the car in front of them but the car behind them was not so fortunate and slammed into the rear of their car, sending their car into the car in front of them who had already been involved in the end of a fifteen car pile-up.
Turning off the car, John immediately reached over to Monica. "Are you alright?" he asked, touching her arm.
"I… Yeah. You?"
"Yeah." When she turned to face him, he gasped. "You're not alright." Leaning over her, he took some napkins out of the glove compartment and pressed them to her forehead just above her right eye. "Stay here. I'll check on the car behind us." He had just reached for the door handle when there was another hard jolt that sent a number of cars, including theirs, skidding a few more yards forward and sending John into the steering wheel without his seat belt securing him.
"John!" Monica let the napkins fall as she reached over to her unconscious partner. "John, are you alright?" she cried while checking for a pulse. A knock on the passenger's window startled her but when she turned around she saw a police officer looking in. Immediately she opened the door.
"How bad is he?" he asked.
"He's unconscious. He was fine after the initial hit but that second one… he wasn't wearing his seatbelt at that point."
The officer saw the streaks of blood sliding down her face. "What about you?"
"I'm fine. Just a cut."
He nodded not really having the time to push further in the midst of what had become a fifty-three car accident. "Emergency services are on the way. There's a doctor a few cars back helping someone out. I'll send him down here."
"Thank you." Monica quickly turned her attention back to John, who was still slumped over the steering wheel. Afraid to move him in case of worsening his condition, she settled for talking to him. "You're not going to do this to me, John," she whispered, stroking his hair. "We've been through far too much for me to lose you in a car accident. Besides, car accidents were my thing, not yours."
Cold air rushed into the car when the doctor opened the driver's side. "How long has he been like this?"
"About…" She glanced at her watch. "Ten minutes."
Carefully, the doctor felt around John's neck and spine then slid his hand between John and the steering wheel to feel for injuries. "I'm going to move him off the steering wheel," he softly told Monica. "I don't think his neck or back are broken." Gently, the doctor eased Doggett back against the seat.
Monica's eyes filled with tears. His face was covered in blood. A large lump had risen on his forehead.
Taking a small pen-light, the doctor opened John's left eye and checked dilation before repeating the same step with the right eye at which point a strained moan emerged from John. The doctor looked at Monica. "I don't see any signs of massive internal injuries but he has a severe concussion and most likely a broken nose." He paused. "There's not much more I can do until the ambulance arrives."
"But he's going to be okay?"
John's eyelids fluttered but did not open.
"He should be but it may take a few weeks. I'm sorry, but there are more injuries I need to tend to. Just keep an eye on him and if he wakes don't let him go back to sleep."
She nodded and never noticed him leave as she grasped John's hand in hers. "John? Can you hear me?"
"I'm here. You're going to be alright. Just hang in there." When she got no response, she squeezed his hand. "John, stay with me."
Another pained groan at least indicated he was still conscious.
Tears mixed with blood coated her cheeks. "There were easier ways to get out of this, you know." In the distance, she could hear the sirens of a number of ambulances approaching the scene. "Help's almost here. John? John!"
"Here," he responded with a slur. "You?"
Monica softly laughed. "I can't believe you. Here you are injured far worse than me and you are asking about me?" Still running her fingers through his hair, she said, "I'm fine, John. Don't worry about me."
She let her hands leave him only when the Emergency Medical team arrived.
She looked up from her seat and saw Dana Scully standing in the doorway.
"Is there any word?" the red-head asked her friend as she sat next to her.
Monica shook her head.
"How are you doing?" Scully asked, noticing the bandage.
She smiled. "They told me to take it easy for the next few days but it's nothing."
"What happened? I heard that there were fifty-three cars involved."
"Yeah, and we were right in the middle. The roads got bad all of a sudden. Apparently the first half of that accident happened as we approached and John avoided it but then the SUV behind us hit us. He was fine…" Tears pooled in her chestnut eyes. "He undid his seatbelt to take care of me and was about to get out of the car when we got slammed into again." The tears began to fall. "It all happened so fast after that…"
Scully gently rubbed Monica's back. "There was nothing you could have done, Monica." She sighed. "Wow, this is weird."
Monica glanced at her.
"It wasn't that long ago that I was sitting in the waiting room with John after you were nearly… after that drunk driver hit you."
"Did you and Mulder spend as much time in the hospital as we seem to?"
Scully chuckled. "I think with one more stay, they were going to name a whole wing after us." At least she managed to get a small smile out of Monica.
"Ms. Reyes?" A man still in surgical wear appeared in the doorway.
Immediately Monica and Scully stood up and walked over to him.
"How is he?" Monica asked.
The surgeon smiled. "He's going to be fine. It was only minor internal bleeding that we were able to stop. I am keeping him here for at least three days, though because of the concussion and the broken ribs but he'll be just fine."
"Can we see him," Scully asked.
He looked back and for the between the two women and nodded. "Yeah, but he's still pretty heavily sedated so don't expect too much."
"Thank you," Monica said, nodding at her friend before taking John's hand in her own.
Scully stopped in the doorway and smiled. Something about them reminded her so much of herself and Mulder. She only hoped they would find their way to each other a lot faster than she and Mulder had. Quietly she closed the door behind her.
Taking a deep breath, Monica let her tears flow as she watched her partner sleep. The not-knowing was always the hardest part. It was something she had not fully realized until she had spent two long weeks searching for him in Mexico. Only after she had found them and was assured he was okay did she allow herself to deal with all the emotions. The fear. The worry. The relief.
A smile grew on her lips and she leaned in closer to him. "I'm here, John."
Slowly his eyes opened met her tear-filled ones. He forced a pained smile. "You're okay."
She nodded. "Just a bump on the head."
"For what? John, there was no way you could have prevented this." She gently touched his cheek. "You scared me. I thought I had really lost you this time."
"Not so easy to get rid of," he managed to mutter.
Monica laughed. "No. No you aren't but you don't hear me complaining."
John squeezed the hand that was holding his. His thoughts were becoming a little clearer as the medication started to wear off a bit. "This mean we're off the hook with Leyla?"
"Yeah, I'd say so."
"Mon, you look tired. Get some sleep."
"I mean it."
"I do too," she grinned.
He yawned then groaned in pain.
"Need me to get the doctor?" she asked.
"No." He closed his eyes.
"John, I…" She swallowed hard.
Opening his eyes once again, he searched hers. "What?"
"I… Too many times things have almost happened to one or both of us. I just…" She took a deep breath and held his gaze. "I want you to know that even though I know you don't feel the same way… John, I love you."
He wordlessly stared at her sure that it was the drugs that were making him hear things.
"I don't want this to change anything between us," she rambled on. "If you want to forget I ever said it that's fine too but I needed to tell you just in case I never get the chance again."
Too stunned to even open his mouth, he slid his hand from hers.
Monica's chest ached at his action. She had just changed everything. He would request a transfer. She lost her… A warmth on her cheek stopped her thoughts and she searched his piercing blue eyes.
"I love you, too," he whispered. With what little energy he had, he used it to slide his hand behind her neck and pull her gently down to him. Their lips joined in the softest of kisses and as quickly as it began, it ended. Monica lifted her head enough to look into his eyes and smiled.
"We'll continue that when we're both more up to it," he promised with a warm smile.
"We'd better." Feeling her own medication taking over, she reluctantly sat up straight. "You need to rest. The sooner you get out of here the sooner we can pick up where we just left off."
John nodded and closed his eyes once more.
After a few moments of watching him, Monica stood up, leaned over and touched her lips to his once more. "Love you," she whispered.
"Love you," he wearily replied before drifting off.
Monica was surprised to run into Scully when she stepped out of John's room.
Scully grinned widely.
"What?" Monica asked.
"It's about time," was her only reply. "I wasn't spying. I came back to see if you wanted a ride home and um, well, walked in on you."
"Oh." Monica blushed.
"Monica, I couldn't be happier for the two of you. I have never seen two people who absolutely adore and respect each other as much as you and John do." Sliding her coat on, she continued, "Come on. You're in no condition to drive. I'll bring you back first thing in the morning."
Passing one more glance at the door to John's room, Monica followed Scully. Maybe time spent in hospitals wasn't so bad after all.