No need to fear. I do the same thing all the time, so I'd obviously make sure fish fails gracefully when X is missing. :)
The browser finding code checks if you have the DISPLAY variable set, and if not, it only tries to use text-based browsers like lynx, links, e3m, etc.. Fish also respects the BROWSER environment variable, so you can specify any browser you want.
As to well written man pages, I think they are fine for everything that is smaller than five or ten pages. But after that, you really start missing hyperlinks...
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