|Reviews for Gray Scale|
| Guest chapter 71 . 2/5
What an engaging read! Would love to read the next chapter, see some resolution, soon!
| Mari83 chapter 71 . 7/21/2013
As usual, I admire your talent for dialogue and psychological tension. It's almost painful to see Gibbs being forced to watch powerlessly while Londono goads Gray – the both of them really do operate in a world of their own in which Gibbs' and the team's ideas of right and wrong matter little. And what a fitting chapter title, though I'm not quite sure who really is the spider and if there's only one of them.
"You cannot simply turn your back on your past and expect it to vanish. Our histories are living things. A part of us." Londono unclasped his hands, ran a palm over the arm of the couch. "And that business is . . . explosive. It lingers in the mind. Such things can only be left behind by degrees, as a new life is built, brick by brick."
Gray hesitated, for a moment. Gibbs held his breath.
And that's when Gray started to give. "That's what we're doing."
This moment – it hurts to see Gray identifying with Londono, even though there's probably truth to it.
Thanks for updating!
| stareagle chapter 71 . 7/15/2013
Thanks for the update - I am fascinated by the story - really enjoy the dilemma Tony finds himself in, and your analysis of Gibbs and Ziva. What a murky world we live in.
| Carneu chapter 71 . 7/13/2013
Always excited to see an update of your story, no matter how long in between.
| DS2010 chapter 71 . 7/12/2013
lots happening when Kort is involved.
| diana teo chapter 70 . 4/21/2013
Funny how I immediately tense up when Kort's in the room... ;)
That bit at the end sent chills down my back!
| diana teo chapter 69 . 4/21/2013
Tony's self-admission of not being able to stay, and his fear of losing himself...got me right there...
Also liked Ziva's musings about Tony.
| Mamablue chapter 70 . 4/21/2013
Kudos to you for writing one of the best NCIS stories I have read. I have spent several days reading this from beginning to most recent update ... Much to the dismay of my family! I will refrain from asking for more rushing a writer is never conducive, but just know you have a loyal and rather anxious follower here!
| Mari83 chapter 70 . 4/19/2013
(Just the other day I was thinking of of this NCIS-scene – the team in the bar, talking with Abby about spiders – and couldn't place the episode / season. Well, duh. See how your story creeped into my head?)
"Kort broke the silence. "Retired. From what, exactly?"
Gibbs discovered he could appreciate British sarcasm."
"From my businesses in Colombia. I was recently named CEO of an oil and gas company operating throughout South America," Londono said smoothly.
Perfectly fitting. Just moving from one shady and illegal business to a slightly less shady one, and I bet all his contacts are going to be so useful.
"He looked like a banker and he sounded like an executive in a corporate boardroom, one with black chairs and glass furniture and windows so high there was nothing to see out of them but sky. The contrast between Londono and Gibbs' ancient, worn out couch was unreal".
And it's a very stark image, the scene you're giving us here with the rough homeliness of Gibbs' house penetrated by Londano's threatening sleekness.
"The tone didn't say subordinate, or rival or threat. But it took control of the room, removed it neatly from Holdner and put it down between Gray and Londono. There were two CEOs at this table. The rest of them were staff.
Gibbs had expected, had hoped, for nothing less. This was not NCIS's world, not even the CIA's. This was something else. Gray's world. Gray's family, twisted as what remained of it was, and his future, dark as it might be. It was Gray's life, from beginning to end.
It all felt entirely right. Clear and inevitable in Gibbs' chest, like a burst of relief."
And without even spelling it out you give us the moral twilight they've gotten themselves into. Here we have Gibbs, who's always so fierce to protect children from evil, finding himself relying on a kid to lead them out of this situation.
"A decade before Gray was born, Gibbs sat up late on the couch he was looking at now, memorizing photos of the Calera brothers. Of Gray's grandfather. He'd set his rifle on the coffee table and cleaned it there, where he never would when it was a real family room, and he'd thought about how he would end the Caleras the same way he'd ended Hernandez.
It was a satisfying thought, a simple idea. Too simple to be real, it turned out. Because there had been no end, he could see that now. "
Wow, bleak and strong and masterfully pulled together.
"I have something for you," Londono said. There was something strange in the way he said it. His hand moved hesitantly, then swiftly to the inside pocket of his suit jacket.
Why am I expecting something in the line of photos of dead people, body parts or such? Then again, that wouldn't be subtle...
| stareagle chapter 70 . 4/17/2013
Thanks for the update - I love the twists and turns. Ton's crisis of conscience was well done. What a murky world of ethics!
| Mari83 chapter 69 . 4/15/2013
"Ziva and Ninja Sarah were buddies after the week spent in the hospital, sharing training and op stories and their assessments of the men around them."
Love all the extra characters and the bonds they form with the team.
"Holder couldn't know what this house meant to Gray. The kid had been inching toward it, Gibbs felt sure. Toward feeling safe here. Safe with Gibbs, like a wild thing lured in from the cold.
And now there was a wolf in there."
How much more personal can it get than Londano inviting himself into Gibbs' house, his sanctuary and that of the team, and now that of Gray and the kids as well. Not that Holder could really understand it, but Londano mighty well does.
"Londono sat on the couch, movement slow. "Is that what he prefers now? Gray?" His accent was soft, smooth. It made his voice sound cultured, something meant to admire wine, to talk about art. Or to broker these delicate little deals."
A cat and mouse game in Gibbs' house. Nothing good can come from this and I don't even want to think what this does to Gray and his tentative trust in Gibbs.
"Ziva nodded in understanding. But - "I do not regret it," she said baldly. "I have been here before and - Tony, I cannot lose any more. If we let them go they win." She added softly, "I cannot let them win."
He looked at Ziva's proud profile, always something remote there, untouchable. He flashed to the scars on Gray's shoulders, the look of melt on Cassie's arm, on her face, and he felt the old stab in his gut. He felt it the same as he'd felt it on that day, the horror in her eyes, the despair of that other camp. The cold in Gibbs, an inhuman will. It was beyond law. Beyond him."
Love the conversation between Tony and Ziva, the way their outlook on this situation is very different... and Ziva more sure of her identity, more settled with the moral implications than Tony and his fear of losing himself. It seems very much like him to need and look for orientation, absolute guidance while both Gibbs and Ziva know there isn't. I really like that as an exploration of why he cannot accept what the kids have done.
Thanks for the update!
| Mari83 chapter 68 . 3/25/2013
Thanks for two more excellent chapter! You have such a talent for telling so much through dialogue and little gestures.
I can just repeat what I said before: it's rare to find a story that is equally plot and character-driven – and excels at both. I can't believe how much has happened since they left for the jungle – they've really gradually slipped into this unsolvable situation where no matter what they do people are going to be hurt. Very true to the title, only scales of grey here. One thing I love about this story is that you don't shy away from showing darkness and violence, don't glorify anyone, but it never goes overboard for violence and action for its own sake. We always get to see the humaneness of your characters.
Thanks for sharing!
| DarChe chapter 68 . 3/23/2013
I didn't want to start this - it looked really good and I was going to wait until it was complete. But you hooked me completly - I can't wait for the ending - hoping it is a good one
| LAG chapter 68 . 3/23/2013
This is one of the best stories I have read, great writing, amazing plot. The emotional and moral conflicts, can't wait to see how this ends.
| nk chapter 68 . 3/21/2013
Brilliantly done as always. I have a heavy sad feeling about the ending here-but it seems to be a fitting one.