Frank Spotniz, John Shiban, and Vince Gilligan
Michele Wilkes, an Emergency Medical Technician
, races an ambulance through the
streets of Philadelphia
as her highly-regarded partner, Leonard Betts, attends to a dying
man. As the ambulance speeds through an intersection
, it is broadsided by a truck.
Wilkes survives, but she is horrified
to discover Betts' decapitated body nearby.
are brought into the case when Betts' headless corpse disappears
from a hospital morgue
. Scully theorizes that someone attempted to steal the body and
sell it to an unscrupulous medical supplier
. But when security camera footage shows an
unidentified person with a strange distortion
around the head area leaving the hospital.
Mulder suspects something strange is going on.
With Mulder's reluctant
help, Scully fishes through the hospital's bio-disposal unit for the
. The agents recover the missing head, but the whereabouts of the body
remains a mystery
. As Scully prepares to perform an autopsy
on the head, its eyes and
mouth suddenly snap open.
A tissue sample taken from Betts' head is analyzed
by a pathologist
who determines that
Betts was riddled with cancer
, so much that a normal human could have never lived
that way. Mulder hypothesizes
that Betts had somehow incorporated
cancer into his
body, and possessed unimaginable regenerative powers
--perhaps the next step in Man's
evolution. A fingerprint
search reveals that Betts' real name is Albert Tanner. The agents
interview his mother
, Elaine, who claims that Albert died in an automobile
As Wilkes is transporting another patient, she recognizes Betts' voice transmitting
the ambulance radio
. She locates Betts working as an EMT at another hospital. As the
two embrace, Betts pulls out a syringe
and injects Michele with a lethal substance
A security guard witnesses
the murder and handcuffs Betts to his car. Betts slips out of
the cuffs by tearing off his own thumb
. When the thumb is found, Mulder guesses he tore
it off because he knew he could grow another.
When the agents search the trunk of Betts' car, they discover plastic bags
. Mulder postulates that Betts is ingesting the cancerous tissue
in order to
survive. They learn that the car is registered to Albert Tanner's mother.
Weak and needing sustenance
, Betts attacks and kills a heavy-smoking
after he leaves a bar. Strengthened, Betts is then able to "gives birth" to a duplicate of
The agents discover a storage locker
key at Mrs. Tanner's home. When they open the
door to the locker, they find the smoking man's body, its left lung
from within the locker, a car roars to life, and Betts attempts to run down Mulder and
Scully. The agents dive for cover
and open fire. The car bursts into flames
Though Mulder is convinced that something else is going on, Scully reminds her partner
that Betts is quite dead
and his not coming back to life, and the case is over.
Nonetheless, Mulder exhumes the body of the man Mrs. Tanner claimed was killed in
the automobile accident. Inside the casket is a corpse
identical to Betts. Mulder
concludes that the fiery crash
was a ruse-and the real Leonard Betts is still alive.
The agents stakeout Mrs. Tanner's home waiting for Betts to return. When an ambulance
arrives at the scene, Mulder and Scully race inside. They find Mrs. Tanner, still clinging
to life, with a fresh surgical incision
on her chest. Mulder searches the neighborhood
while Scully accompanies Tanner to the hospital, but when the ambulance pulls into the
hospital parking lot, she realizes Betts hitched a ride by hiding on the vehicle's roof
Betts jumps inside the ambulance and slams the rear doors behind him. Wielding a
, he tells Scully she possesses "something I need." A scuffle ensues, and Scully
kills Betts using defibrillation
pads. Later that night, as Scully lies in bed, she wakes up
coughing and finds a few drops of blood
on her pillow
. As her nose continues to bleed,
she recalls Betts' haunting words.
Scully -- "What are we doing here
Mulder -- "Did I mention that Mr. Betts had no head?"
Scully -- "Yes, so? I mean, you're not suggesting that a headless body
kicked his way out of a locked morgue
freezer, are you?"
Mulder -- "I wanna see how he lives."
Scully -- "Lived
Mulder -- "Lived."
Mulder -- "Chuck, would you believe that this man's head had been decapitated
Chuck -- "Aw, man! No way!
Mulder -- "Way!
Mulder -- "Will the real Leonard Betts please stand up
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