Chapter one – Don't waste good
The terrorist group, the Calling, was now a thing of the past. Gibbs was back in his chair … but on administrative duties.
SECNAV had ordered the team off case work for some time. Taking down the Calling had left many scars and the suits decided it was best to give the team some time to regroup. Help was offered, but to no one's surprise, not a single member of Gibbs's team sought help. Director Vance was faced with the order that if the horses didn't come to the water then he had to bring the water to the horses. Easier said than done with that group. Vance had to come up with a way to "impose" the needed help without it looking like a punishment.
With Gibbs, he was observing the team from the top of the stairs.
Vince spoke, "Gibbs, thanks for agreeing to my plan. You will need to brace yourself for a reaction of some sort. I practically fainted when I saw the man and you had your gun in his face the second he entered. Don't you think we should brief them beforehand?"
Glancing at the Director, Gibbs replied, "Leon, no more your call. You gave me part of your chair, they are now 100% mine to lead."
"You're right; your call. That's another news you're keeping from them. Gibbs, you accepting an assistant director's position must come out at some point. Also, it would be good for Tony to know he's now officially team leader."
"Leon, what was one of the conditions for me accepting the job?"
"A new rule # 52 : Leave the lead to the appointed leaders. It's the only way they'll learn."
Gibbs pasted a sly smile on his face, nodded and joined his team, but not before adding,
"Hard rule to follow, but it's a must!"
"I know Gibbs, times are changing! We need to make place for the 'new'. Just hope our added help won't mess this team up."
"Well, that will be one of your 'lead,' to deal with!"
Shaking his head, Leon returned to his office.
Gibbs stood at Ziva's desk and asked, "Where Ziva?"
Tony rolled his eyes and pencil as he said, "As usual, in the gym, beating herself up. You might want to have a word with her."
Taking a sip of coffee, Gibbs answered, "What can I say that she does not already know?"
Annoyed, Tony returned his attention to the computer screen.
Tim asked, "Boss, you have any idea when we are going to be cleared for field duty?"
"When you seek the offered help."
Tony added, "Help … you think we need some?"
Gibbs chuckles, "DiNozzo, you're asking me?!"
All eyes were on Gibbs as his phone rang.
"DiNozzo get Ziva."
As Tony was hurrying out, Gibbs slumped his shoulder and added,
"Grab your gear and pick up Ziva's. Gees … and you're the one saying you don't need help!"
Turning towards Tim, "Get Abby and join us at FBI's Training Academy in Quantico."
Startled by the request, Tim, by Gibbs's look, decided not to ask for an explanation. Tony, at hearing those words, slowed down and whispered,
The team was greeted by an NCIS instructor they all knew, Alexandra "Alex" Quinn.
"Ah, they finally succeeded in corralling you guys! Welcome to terrorist training 101. This five-day course consist of properly securing location when on enemy territories and how to work as a team in dangerous situations."
Tony spoke, "Did you say FIVE days?"
Quinn answered, "Yes, special agent DiNozzo, is there a problem?"
Vance, who had just arrived, startled all by his answer,
"No, Alex, there won't be any problems. People, I suggest you take 15 minutes to cancel plans and/or advise whom you must of your absences. Then hand over your cellulars to special agent Quin. No exceptions!"
Abby slowly lifted her hand and Vance nodded, "Director, I'm not a Special Officer. What ... well…"
"Abby, you often assist our Officers in the field. Better you get a first-row seat of what they could be facing. Do not worry, we will not demand of you to point and shoot…"
Alex interrupted and asked to speak, Gibbs signaled her to take over,
"Abby, let's say Ziva calls and has discovered a Scud missile with a mustard gas warhead? How could you help Ziva?"
Abby answered with a sly smile, "Hot water alone is sufficient to temporally neutralize mustard gas. The resulting waste would need to be treated by supercritical water oxidation that's extremely hot, pressurized water added to hydrolysate to decompose the liquid waste into its basic components of water, carbon dioxide, heavy metals, and salts, rendering the gas nontoxic."
A red head appeared next to Agent Quinn and replied, "A+, Mrs. Sciuto. Now what would be your answer if it was a mustard gas lewisite mixture?"
Abby looked at the newcomer in a slow up and down exam before answering,
"That's a nasty toxin with no known antidote! It is both a blister agent (vesicant) and an alkylating agent (causes damage to the DNA of rapidly dividing cells). The protocol demands a NIOSH-certified Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear (CBRN) Self Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA) with a Level A protective suit."
The newcomer smiled, "See you know your protocol manual, but your agent is in the field. She doesn't have a whatyoucalledit suit! For these five days, you'll want to keep in mind that chemical weapons can be destroyed easily or safely, but not both. Care to try again?"
At that point, Gibbs stepped in, "People, this is MI-6 forensic specialist, Sharon Welby. She'll be with us for the duration of the training and will be joining us for some time as a liaison officer. Her role will be to properly train you on how best to react when in the presence of a toxin emergencies. Her field of expertise is FSB and Russian's terrorists. In return, MI-6 wants us to teach her the 'investigating' part of our work and firearms training."
Abby asked, as the others seemed to be searching for answers on what just was happening.
"Gibbs, like we did with Ziva?"
Chuckling, "Not quite, Officer Welby has no weapon training whatsoever. She, like you, is in a lab, but contrary to yours, her lab is in the field. The lady is also an air force pilot. Her duties at MI-6 are to extract field officers from very dangerous situations by putting her forensic knowledge to good use. Abs, don't panic, you will not be asked to extract our special agents! We would like you two to learn for each other not adopt your agencies' MO."
Gibbs looked at his team then said, "Officer Lavin, could you join us?"
As the man appeared, Tony and Tim drew their weapons. Gibbs called them off. Ziva let her head fall and said in Hebrew,
Alo haver! (Hi friend!) Mah Sheshano'a Aleikha Al Ta'aseh Lehaberkha (don't do to another what is hated by you).
Eyal Lavin answered, "Lehakoth Babarzel Be'odo Ham (hit the iron while it's hot)."
He switched to English, "I'm kidding Ziva! Mossad didn't send me over for some wrong doing on your part. I can see the paranoid part of you is still alive and kicking (Gibbs and Tony nodded!) The threats against both our countries are escalating and your team just witness what's it's like to be caught between Evil and Evil. Welcome l… you stepped in the real world's field mine. You Americans live in ... well... Merov etzim lo ro'im eth ha'ya'ar (Can't see the forest for the trees).
The man stopped, he seemed to be fighting with some inner demon.
Gibbs, as he had done with the first newcomer explained, "This is our second specialist. As you all guessed, he's Mossad. His name is Eyal Lavin. You must have noticed that the man is a carbon copy of Ilan Bodnar. Ziva care to take over?"
"Eyal is Ilan's twin brother. Their parents were both Mossad and divorced soon after the boys were born. Eyal was adopted by his mother's sister (he is nothing like Ilan) and Eli, my father, arranged for Ilan to be 'trained' as a spy by a friend of his. Ilan was to be my father's replacement since I wasn't worthy enough!"
Eyal outed, "Al tistakel baqanqan, ela bemah shebetokho!"
Sharon added, "Don't look at the jar, but at what's inside it. It means: Don't be fooled by external appearances–find the real value."
All, including Eyal and Ziva, looked at Sharon, "Yes, I speak fluent Hebrew!"
Vance calmed the troops, "People, I know all too well you'll get the nitty-gritty details from the nearest scuttlebutt as soon as you have a couple of minutes to spare. Just want you to know that Eyal Lavin is one of Mossad's best. He's a reference for interacting and going undercover in terrorist organizations. Since he is also 'pulled out' of field work, Director Elbaz lend him to me for some time. For now, you need to listen. Gibbs…?"
Gibbs heavily breathed in then out.
"As you know, our last mission had dire consequences for our team. I admit you (and I) were not prepared to face such adversaries. I take full responsibilities for the results of the mission. Tony and Ziva had to mop up my mistakes. With the help of Abby and Tim, they cornered and put an end to the Calling. I'm proud of the result, but the 'how' put you all at risk and for that I am at fault. My first action, when I came out of my coma, was to give my resignation to Director Vance. He refused, but admitted that my reasoning was right. He came back with a counter proposition which I accepted. As of today, Tony is team leader and I'm assistant Director. My task is to get you ready to face the 21st century. I have liberty to do some field work… meaning I'll be watching you! To help, Director Vance called in a couple of IOUs and added two new members to our team."
It goes without saying that all were surprised. Tony whispered, "Do I have a choice?"
Gibbs heard and replied, "Yes, Tony. This is not boot camp. You can refuse, but you'd be wasting good!"
"Boss, it's just that … well… Mossad officers and I don't…"
A smiling Eyal said, "I'm not an ex-lover or jealous partner of Ziva's. I don't abuse alcohol or drugs. My career goal is not to become head of Mossad. I've risked my butt many times to get our little Ms. Ziva David out of perilous situations and was punished by Director David for doing so. Tony, we should get along just fine."
Abby shyly lifted her hand, Eyal looked at her, "You want to ask me something?"
Looking at Gibbs, she asked, "Can I?"
Gibbs chuckled and said, "Abby, ask away!"
"I prefer Eyal."
"Eyal, think you need someone to look at your wound, it's bleeding…"
Abby pointed at the ground where a couple of blood drops stained the ground.
Eyal was quick to put his hand on his side, but Sharon was faster. Sitting him down, she signaled to Abby to come forward while asking Officer Quinn for a medical bag.
Sharon asked, "What happened to you, Eyal?"
"One of the reasons I was sent here. I'm off field duty for some time and I don't do well at being assigned to a desk. The offer came and I gladly accepted. Was shot point-blank a couple of weeks ago…"
"Correction, I couple of days ago. Mr. Lavin, I can read a wound and field officers. Get your facts straight when taking to me."
Vance ordered, "Play nice, people!" Lavin, do you need medical help?"
Sharon answered, "It would be best to call a medic!"
Eyal put his hand on her shoulder, "Think I can speak for myself."
At that, Sharon put pressure on the wound and was about to bring her second hand on his leg when Eyal tried to 'handled her'. Ziva stopped him.
She whispered in his ear, "Eyal, like Director Vance said; play nice ... please. She only wants to help."
Turning towards Sharon, she added, "If I were you, next time, I'd ask before jumping into a pool of blood. Yours might be added to it. Eyal is one of Mossad's best … with all the amenities that come with such a title. You get my drift?"
Sharon, fighting with Eyal to continue putting pressure on the wound, added in a very low-key voice,
"I'm usually not a blood hound, but noticed, as he pulled his sport jacket off, that the blood pooling out had bubbles. As of now, the pressure I'm putting on his femoral artery is keeping him alive. HE NEEDS A DAMN DOCTOR!"
That sent Agent Quinn scrambling and help arrived in seconds. They stopped the bleeding. Eyal didn't want to leave but Director Vance ordered him to follow the medics. Gibbs and Vance told the team to mingle while they accompanied Eyal.
Ziva handed towels to Sharon and said, "Sorry, I should have observed before jumping at you! My skills are not … well, not where I want them to be at this time."
Sharon responded, "No harm done. That's what I do; extreme extractions, with experience it brings for extreme observations. As for your skills, girl, you can't do it all. I went down that route … it didn't end well for me. Got back in my forensic world and stayed there. We all have our niche."
Tony approached, "Could you tell me what you know of us? We seem to be at a disadvantage here!"
Sharon smiled, "I studied you all. At MI-6, it's standard protocol to receive a file when assigned to a mission. How does NCIS go about a mission if you don't receive some sort of protocol"
Tim took over, "Sharon, we are investigators not field officers. We are not usually assigned 'missions'. We work crime scenes. From time to time, we can be assigned a special undercover 'mission' to corner culprits but we are not spies."
Sharon concluded, "I get it, you are the equivalent of our marine SIB (Special Investigation branch)."
Abby asked, "You're MI-6 but don't have an English accent?"
"Because I'm Canadian. Lived in Québec City most of my life. Was adopted at 16 by my Uncle, Robert Jackson…"
Ziva stepped back, "You're Chief Jackson's daughter?"
"No, that would be Robin Jackson. She the black one, I'm the red one… but I'm definitely the black sheep; the always in trouble, odd and adopted one!"
Tony lifted his eyes to the sky and said, "Great, another 'special' one!"
Tim looked at Tony who whispered to him,
"Another odd director's daughter with a twist, she's a red head. Add to that a Mossad Officer extraordinaire and we have one hell of a time bomb and guess what… I'm in charge! Poseidon adventure at its best!"
Tim was blinking but Tony didn't notice. As he straightened, he signed, "He's in my back?"
Tim nodded as Gibbs gently head slapped Tony. Sharon and Eyal, who had rejoined them, took a step back.
Tony felt it best to explain, "Don't worry, it's a sign that the Boss is feeling his old self again. And for us that's good news! Welcome back Boss, we missed you!"
"Tony, you're the Boss now … remember!"
"Nightmare on Elm Street ... oh yes, I remember. How could I forget!
Gibbs smiled and said, "Now would be the time to hand over your cellulars to Special Officer Quinn."
Tim added, "Boss, mine isn't your standard issued…"
"Tim, that was not a request. Officer Lavin, that also goes for your back-up. The one behind your belt."
Ziva smiled and said, "Oh, that brings back memories… Eyal, it's for you to know that he knows… Take my word; don't fool with Gibbs."
Gibbs gave Ziva a signed kudos!
Vance took Gibbs aside, "Leroy, I'm needed at SECNAV. What do you think of our two 'specialist'?"
"At first glance, good people. Not worried about Sharon, she's a typical red head. Her, I can handle … no; I will help TONY handle (Vance smiled) but Officer Lavin … he's a special case. More to him than meets the eye."
"As you Gibbs, as you. For Sharon, our part of the deal is to give her some firearm and investigating trainings … and if possible but not mandatory, help her control a sometimes fast shooting mouth! Her father, not the Chief, added that one! For Lavin … well, it's what you just said… Mossad's want him to learn to play better with others. From a lone wolf to another, I trust you'll be able to train him well. Gibbs, he a good and very capable officer. Mossad's director, Orli Elbaz, assured me he just needs a bit of 'people' training. He's went through a lot. She said that if he didn't play nice that she'd take him back and properly deal with him. See, as usual, you didn't read the files I sent you."
"Leon, it would have taken the S out of surprise. I'll read them, promise!"
"That you read them or not is no more my problem. I've done my job by giving you the means of doing yours. You don't use those tools, it's your bad! But, remember, I will be the one scoring the final exam. See you at that time, assistant director."
Gibbs put on a sly smile, but Leon knew his words had sunk deeper than Gibbs let on.
Approaching his team, Gibbs had to smile; Abby was protecting Eyal like a wounded bird, Ziva was chatting with Sharon as old friends and Tim/ ony were at each other's throats. And as usual all came to attention as he joined them.
"OK, do you have questions on these five days. Ask them now or forever hold your peace!"
Tony couldn't help adding, "Ya, that would stick after four weddings!"
Gibbs shot him the worst of looks.
Sharon and Eyal both said, "Four!"
Tony nervously replied, "Sorry Boss!"
Rolling his eyes at him, Gibbs, again asked, "Questions? None, OK, see you in five days!"
Tim and Abby replied, "You're not staying?"
"No, I'm needed … at my desk! Have files to read. Tony is team leader. Ducky and Palmer will be joining you for half days.
As Gibbs was leaving, Eyal approached Sharon, "Hey, nice catch and I'm sorry for jumping at you. We could maybe have a drink sometimes/somewheres, don't quite know what these next five days are going to be like."
"You're welcome and I accept your invitation. We could easily sneak out of here for a night cap!"
They both jumped at hearing their four teammates saying,
"No, you can't. Rule 12: Never date a co-worker and Rule 14: "Bend the line, don't break it." Sneaking out would be breaking it!"
To be continued! Please review if you like where this story is going or have suggestions!