Disclaimer: I don't own NCIS or anything else that'smade any money. Does anyone else notice a trend with these...

Notes: I'm gonna be slapped for this one... Sorry it's just an idea that was bouncing around my head. Don't expect anything fantastic... Just pointless slash in an unlikely setting.

And Who The Hell Are You?


Bete Noir

It's okay honey there's absolutely nothing to be afraid of... Except that fog that turns people inside out.


Abbey dropped the box down in front of Tony as he looked up from his desk, phone pressed firmly to his ear. He said his goodbyes a moment later and hung up looking at her expectantly.

"Ducky's acting funny and he wants these samples down in the morgue and I can't go down because I've developed this fear of autopsies. Can you please just take them." She said in a rush.

"Autopsies?" Tony said sceptically, she shoved the box towards him.

"Take now, tease later." She said.

"Wouldn't dream of it. Actually I'm not too crazy about vampires myself." He shared with a lopsided grin, vainly attempting to calm her.

"Thanks Tony. Vampires?"

"Hey what's a trip to he lab between friends." He laughed, changing the subject.

"Actually Ducky's in kind of a funny mood." Abbey said her brow creasing.

"Funny as in slightly off..." Tony asked suspiciously.

"Or funny I should drop the box in and run."

"Drop the box and run."

"You owe me a coffee... a big one." Tony grumbled as he headed off towards the elevator.

Tony stepped confidently out of elevator, the chilled morgue air not slowing him in the slightest. He felt a pang of sympathy for Abbey's discomfort but couldn't truly understand it since he'd never even on his first trip to a morgue felt creped out by it. It was cold storage for dead body's, lifeless shells, live people were what caused Tony worry. They were liable to turn around and smack you in the face, dead body's... not so much. Tony paused at the glass doors and pushed, puzzled when they didn't open.

"Ducky?" He called through the doors.

"Hi McGee, I didn't expect you. I thought for sure Abbey would drop that off to Tony or Kate." Ducky said through the doors, voice muffled. Tony's first impulse was to correct him and then laugh. But as Abbey said something was really off, Ducky didn't just call him McGee for nothing.

"Well Kate was busy and ya know Tony dump all the remedial work on the rookie." Tony said lamely not sure how to act like McGee. Can I be that awkward and dorky.

"Yes well hazing as ridiculous as it is happens to be is one of Tony favourite activities. Fortunately I don't think he's liable to dowse you in shaving cream, stupid arse that he can be." Ducky grumbled and Tony paused before answering. Ouch, does he really see me that way?

"Are ya sure or is that something I should be watching out for?" Tony said still unsure whether or not to be offended.

"Don't worry..." Ducky said with a laugh.

"I'm sure the fact that Gibbs would kill him if he did will keep him in line."

"Thanks Ducky... so what's up with the quarantine, should I worry." Tony asked, eyes inspecting the dark space closely.

"No, no just some spots I found on our body here, it's probably nothing... but better safe than an outbreak of the Ebola virus." Ducky joked.

"So I should just leave this at the door then." Tony asked uncertainly.

"Yes, yes, I think we've taken quite enough of each others time." Duck said waving him away.

"Right, I'll kick Tony in the arse for you when I get back upstairs." Tony said, causing Ducky to chuckle.

"Much appreciated Timmy, thanks for the delivery." Tony nodded placing the box at the door, he turned and tried to keep his steps even as he ventured towards the elevator. He didn't move fast enough.

Chapter One

Actions And Reactions

All life's a stage and the men and women merely players…

William Shakespeare

Tony rested facedown on one of Ducky's spare autopsy tables, the metal cold under his sweaty skin. His body straining under his every tensed muscle, as the terrorist palming the 9mm patted him down. His gun had long since been removed and his ID fished out from his back pocket.

"Are you any good with this?" The man standing over him questioned.

"Would I carry it if I wasn't." He answered, inhaling and gritting his teeth as the sound of his gun being ripped apart and reassembled met his ears.

"Nice, well taken care of too. I've always said you can tell a lot about an agent by the way he treats weapons and women." He paused.

"We've similar tastes in both I think. 9mm Berretta with an 18 mag clip rather than your standard 15. I hope you know agent DiNozzo that that clip is barely legal even for an NCIS. Seems slightly overboard, are you sure you're apt with this." The warm drawl floated to his ears and pissed Tony off.

"Give back my gun and I'll demonstrate." Tony bit, throwing caution to the wind. Tony could hear the bastard smirk.

"Perhaps another time. You may turn now agent DiNozzo." Tony slowly turned over staying on the table looking around what he could now see of the darkened room.

"Agent An-tiony DiNozzo, not Timothy McGee." It was a statement.

"You lied to me agent DiNozzo. Dr Mallard please explain to him what the penalty for lying is." He said stepping into Tony's line of sight. He had close-cropped brown hair, dark brown eyes and Sharp features.

"If we at any point try to lie to him, trick him, inform others of his presence or don't answer his questions he will shoot Gerald in his subclavian artery. So please Tony no heroics." Ducky said.

"A little late for that Dr Mallard." He said.

"Tony didn't know the consequences of lying to you." Ducky stated.

"But you did." He answered simply. There was a space of about five seconds after the terrorist shot Gerald where it didn't register for Tony. Then without much conscious thought Tony's body was moving as he jumped off the table to help Ducky.

The only thing Tony knew about medicine was that it took 4-7 years to learn it. What he did know for sure was that he'd seen a fellow agent shot once before, the guy had been hit three times and all those wounds together hadn't produced this much blood. After about 20 minutes of mindlessly following Ducky's commands of put that here and hold that there and hand me that. The bullet was finally dug out and the gushing stopped.

Tony's attention had only slipped once. He was pressing a gauze to Gerald's shoulder while Ducky hunted for the bullet. His eyes drifted over to the corner where the terrorist was digging through the box that Tony had brought down. Most of the possessions were studied briefly and then tossed aside, something though was slipped into his pocket. Tony watched as the hand came back out empty, his eyes then drifted and he realised that he was being watched while he watched. He did nothing bar match Tony's blank expression.

Then Ducky had scolded him, breaking him out of his reprieve and pissing contest. Though Tony wasn't quite sure that that's what it was.

"Tony I know it's hard but try'en concentrate for more than five seconds. This is rather serious you know." Ducky snapped, upset with his own foolish shortsightedness.

"What's wrong Duck. Looks like your doing fine to me." Tony said eyes now pinned on Gerald.

"Not really I've stopped the bleeding, but in order to do that I've had to clamp the nerve. If this isn't repaired soon Gerald could lose his arm." Ducky groaned.

"Can't you do it." Tony said.

"That would take a staff of three and an equipped operating room. I don't know if you've noticed lately Tony but this is the morgue its designed for tearing bodies apart not putting them back together."

Chapter Two


If you ever do anything… Make sure its stupid and halfarsed…

The phone stated trilling in the background, breaking the tangible silence that had filled the morgue.

"Don't be rude agent DiNozzo... answer the phone." He drawled

"And what am I to say?" Tony asked. The arse raised an eyebrow.

"I just don't want anyone else to get up close and personal with a 9mm bullet."

"You are to speak to agent Gibbs, tell him that there's someone here looking for the rest of the possessions from your latest case. Inform him of Gerald's condition and that if he wants the rest of the team back unharmed he will deliver personally the rest of the evidence to the lab in twenty minutes. Anything specific about me or what I may and may not want and I put a bullet in your knee." Tony picked up the phone

"Hi boss."

"Tony what's..."

"Two minutes agent DiNozzo. I suggest you don't mess it up." Tony inhaled glaring.

"Boss shut up and listen. I have someone down here wanting the evidence from the case we're working. You have to deliver it to the lab in twenty minutes or he'll shoot Ducky and I. Gerald's already got his own brand spanking new bullet wound and he really needs a doctor like right now." There was silence on the other end.

"How's Gerald?"

"Ducky stopped the bleeding but..." A dark hand pressed the phones receiver. Tony glared at him biting his bottom lip. Tony held up the handset surrendering it.

"He's coming, happy." He spat.

"You should be, because now I won't have to put a bullet in your head." He smiled at Tony.

"Thought it was my knee." Another smile.

"Very good agent DiNozzo and to think you had me worried for a second there." He said warmly with a condescending edge, which made Tony sneer. The terrorist turned his back stepping off, Tony looked down at the tray beside Gerald's table a scalpel glinted back at him. He looked up and found Ducky watching him, the doctor shook his head.

"Don't." He whispered.

"Sorry what was that Dr Mallard." He said, turning back towards them.

"Ducky was just telling me not to cut your head off since you'd just use that as excuse to shoot Gerald again. That is why you let it be left out right." Tony said picking up the blade.

"Is that what you think agent DiNozzo?" He asked.

"No that's Ducky's theory. I think that without a head... you won't be shooting anyone else." Tony stated and lunged, genuinely aiming for the bastards throat... The bastard was quicker. Tony's hand was knocked and he blade skimmed across several inches of shoulder before finally embedding and leaving Tony's hand. Both of his arms were seized and twisted painfully behind his back. One arm being wrenched on until Tony yelped involuntarily. Tony was forced to bend his knees slightly to keep his arms from being dislocated and the terrorist who naturally had about three inches on Tony was now towering over him. The blade still sticking from his shoulder.

"Nice shot." He said nonchalantly.

"I was aiming for your neck." Tony growled.

"Sorry I made you miss taking my head off." He laughed.

"Pity." Tony bit.

"It could only be an improvement." At that he chuckled.

"I respect people willing to do what it takes An-tiony." He whispered leaning close to Tony's ear while his eyes remain fixed on doctor Mallard over Tony's shoulder.

He shoved Tony away sending him stumbling back into Gerald's table. He pulled out the scalpel and pulled off his cut shirt. Showing a dark singlet and a toned body. Blood ran from his shoulder.

"Foolish to risk your friend on a flesh wound." He said inspecting the damage.

"If you had been more cooperative and stood still then it wouldn't be a flesh wound. Beside you didn't say anything about trying to kill you." Tony said smugly.

"Fair enough." He said.

"But since this isn't deep and won't require stitches you can clean and dress it agent DiNozzo." He said.

"Now..." He ordered coldly when Tony didn't move.

"Or else I will introduce Gerald to another bullet."

Chapter Three

What the ...!

And now it's time for 'What the…'

Rove, Rove Live

After Ducky had been unceremoniously shoved into one of the morgue lockers. Tony was made to clean and dress the wound. The son-of-a-bitch was right it wasn't that deep at all, except for the last half inch that almost scraped bone. Tony bit his lip trying to clean and dress the wound as quickly as possible and by no means even trying to be gentle. The terrorist was perched on one of Ducky's lower counters making him only slightly shorter then DiNozzo. Tony dabbed at the wound not wanting to cause anymore damage, which would mean more work and him staying close to this arsehole for even longer.

"Your quite talented agent DiNozzo." He murmured.

"Not really." Tony bit shortly and then swallowed.

"It's fairly self-explanatory like putting a bandaid on a scraped knee. Nothing to be proud of." Tony rambled.

"I wasn't talking about your medical skills agent DiNozzo. Though those are... interesting. I was referring to your career." He said looking straight at Tony, who avoided his gaze like the plague instead focusing on what he was doing.

"What would you know of my career?" Tony asked sceptical.

"I know you were rather brilliant the five years you spent in narcotics. But I'm curious why did leave, your file doesn't say exactly. I do have my suspicions but please tell me." He asked silkily. Tony bit his lip and glared at him angrily, his stomach churning madly. Get a grip. He scolded, but the feeling remained.

"What is this punishment." Tony growled, licking his lips.

"Patching up my shoulder?" He said with amusement.

"Sort of." He said lazily.

"Sort of?" Tony said.

"Its more of a lesson." He said.

"What?" Confusion replacing annoyance.

"Well had you cut me deeper my shoulder would have needed stitches. I wouldn't have made you do those. This is punishment for doing a half-arsed job. Do something right, or not at all." His said quietly, voice lathered with sarcasm.

"It would have been right if you hadn't moved." Tony bit, a kiss-my-arse smile playing across his lips.

"Maybe next time." He drawled. Tony shook his head biting his tongue bitterly. He applied the gauze sticking it to the cleaned flesh, the wound still weeping droplets of blood. He looked down at his own handy work and finally noticed the contradictory line of blood which for some reason defied logic and ran across the shoulder and down his back. It forked of into two lines just beneath his shoulder blades and then ended shortly after, leaving the rest of his back unmarred.

Tony started to move around to the back of the table. Fingers closed around his arm and pulled him back.

"I have to clean your back." Tony said a little stiffly at the contact.


"It's easier to clean from around there." Tony bit, jaw clenching.

"But I don't trust you behind me agent DiNozzo... Even without the scalpel." He said teasingly. Tony glared.

He struggled with cleaning the arses back from where he'd originally been standing, it was harder now with an arm wrapped around his waist, making sure he didn't go anywhere. The contact made his skin prickle and his stomach knot, the lab was unnaturally quiet, oppressively so, it was amplified by the man sitting before him. He had shot Gerald in cold blood only moments before, what the hell was stopping him from doing the same thing to the man who'd stabbed him.

Tony wiped the last smear of blood up and stepped back.

"I'm finished." He ground out glaring. He turned and a hand wrapped around his wrist again, pulling him back. Tony froze his body going rigid, he swallowed and looked down into searching eyes... What were you expecting him to ask you nicely! A voice chided. Tony's other wrist was taken and he was held in front of the bastard.

"What?" Tony demanded, the sound of the elevator starting suddenly blared in the background.

Chapter Four

We've Got Problems

I tried so hard and got so far,

But in the end it doesn't even matter

Linkin Park, In The End

It's stopped amusing Tony long ago how quickly things can change. It seems like only minutes have passed since he wads shoved into the draw beside Ducky's and yet it can't be... Since in those few minutes Gibbs has been shot, Gerald's been rushed to hospital and the terrorist has left very much the same way he came in.

There's several hours of arduous questioning by people who have badges and weapons and the authority to debrief him but no actual department that Tony can remember being mentioned.

Eventually though Tony is allowed to go. Selfishly he heads straight home and after scrubbing himself raw fell into bed. Sleep came entirely too easily and Tony paid for it with nightmares. Tony awoke at about four o'clock in a cold sweat. His stomach was knotted worse than ever and didn't feel any better after he'd brought up everything eaten for lunch. He scrubbed the vomit taste from his mouth and then sighing got into his car and drove. Forty-five minutes of wondering found him at Abbey's door, fifteen minutes of obsessing had him knocking. The door opened immediately and then Abbey stood before him in full Goth regalia.

"Tony? I thought only us vampires were awake at this time of morning." Abbey joked.

"Do you sleep in that?" Tony questioned groggily.

"Sleep?" Abbey said laughter touching her voice. Then she really looked at Tony and realised how worn and sick and haunted he looked. Usually Tony was happy-go-lucky, even at five in the morning.

Abbey pulled Tony inside and after sitting him down on her couch made him some special Irish herbal tea. Which was more vodka than tea.

"Tony what's wrong?" Abbey asked though she already had an idea, you'd have to be an idiot not to. Tony spilled an entire different story to the one Abbey had imagined.

"Hey whoa Tony, I don't know where this is coming from but you have nothing to feel guilty about. You did everything you could to help Ducky and Gerald. None of this is your fault." She said. Tony had told her almost everything, whether it was the late hour or just the wrought-ness of his nerves Tony let out more than he usually would have. He spilled out questions about his own guilt and responsibility in the situation. There was also a whole heap of questions he didn't spill and Abbey wasn't sure how to broach what she thought they were...

Mostly though there was guilt... a whole truckload of it, Abbey tried to reassured him that it wasn't his fault. Tried to quell his fears. As for the unasked questions, he obviously wasn't comfortable talking with her about it. Or probably just talking about it at all. She let those go for the night, she decided that at six o'clock in the morning Tony probably just needed sleep. She tucked him in on the couch and hours later when it was late enough she called in sick for him and then headed off to work herself. Half of the department was out anyway Gibbs had been forced to take at least a day to rest his shoulder and Ducky was still with Gerald. Kate still made her way in seemingly unoffended by the whole event. McGee filled in along with several other who Abbey didn't even meet because, the lab was still a little too shuffled to handle real cases. So mostly they spent the day on left over paper work. Tony would have hated it anyway.

It wasn't until after the whole Voss fiasco that they talked again. Everyone else had headed home and Abbey was packing up the lab when Tony came back.

Abbey was surprise to see him. The day he spent at her house was the last time they'd made eye contact. She'd come home and he was gone. He'd came in the next day and was back to his old self. Well sort of. He was less happy and more obsessed with having Gibbs's approval. Abbey had tried several times to talk to him, he dodges them all. He also replaced his flippant evening dates with going to see Gerald religiously. Abbey felt that it was his self-delegated penance.

So she was shocked when he came to her after Voss, with tears just pricking at the corners of his eyes.

"Abbey am I gay?" He asked bluntly. Abbey sighed and sat down, it was going to be a really long night.

Chapter Five

Who Am I?

I am one, who am I?

Nigel Crane, CSI

"Tony I can't answer that." She said.

"Human sexuality is really complex. Most psychologists don't even try to categorise it for that reason." She sighed.

"I suppose it's all what you really consider gay and straight." She tried.

"And if I consider tonguing a guy gay?" Tony asked flatly.

"Okay let's just look at the facts here for a second..." Abbey said sipping now warm coke.

"You kissed a guy who was essentially a woman." Tony glared at her.

"No seriously hear me out. You met her as a woman Tony, you didn't know that she use to be a guy and still had the hots for her." Abbey shrugged.

"You took her for who she was a smart, funny, big-chested-"

"Guy." Tony said winning him a dirty look from Abbey.

"Tony now that you know she's Voss do ya still wanna jump in the sack?"

"No." Tony said.

"Well, then what's the problem?" Abbey said throwing up her hands.

"Nothing I guess it's just Kate..."

"Forget Kate she's so sexually repressed its unbelievable." Abbey laughed.

"There's also the other thing Abbey." Tony said quietly.

"What?" Abbey questioned.

"The morgue..." It clicked then for Abbey, they'd moved onto another problem that'd been eating at Tony for a long time.

"I just keep screwing up Abbey... and I can't stop!" He said.

"You think Gerald's your fault don't you?" Abbey questioned bluntly, this could be the only chance she had to take to Tony. He flinched and something flashed behind his eyes. He didn't have to say anything, Abbey knew full well when she'd touched a nerve. So that's it.

"Tony situations like that make you crazy. Whatever happened in that damned room doesn't say a thing about you. Nobody reacts well to something like that." Abbey tried to get her point across but somehow she just couldn't think of a way to make him better. Couldn't think of anything to say that would fix all of his doubts. Abbey sighed after a moment and eventually gave up. She pulled Tony into her arms, he cuddled into her shoulder breathing against her neck. She patted his back reassuringly. Abbey didn't believe for a second that she'd helped him at all.

Chapter Six


I wanna run away…

Never say goodbye.

Linkin Park, Runaway

"He's conflicted." Kate said speaking sagely about things she had no fucking clue on. Her whiney voice followed Tony down the hallway. Damn right he was conflicted. Abbey said that he was a good person, a good agent and yet McGee seemed to do his job even better and everybody loved the dorky little bastard. What Abbey had said to him in the lab was nice but in the long run it didn't really seem true.

The terrorist had dredged up a lot of baggage for Tony and it wasn't going away. Worst of all was the relationship he and Gibbs now had. The older man seemed to be keeping him at arms distance now more than ever and for some insane reason that seemed to make him even more desperate for the mans approval. He wanted Gibbs to say that he needed him. Only he knew he had as much chance of that happening as he did of Kate seeing him as more than just a bubble-headed body.

The feelings of doubt were punctuated by the nightmares he now had on an almost daily basis. He would be back in the lab with the son-of-a-bitch. Most started the same way, with him slicing open the bastard's shoulder and then his arm would be grabbed. The bastard would remove the knife from his shoulder and hold it up in front of Tony, blood trickling down the blade. 'Nice shot' He repeated before plunging the knife into Tony stomach... You weren't suppose to feel pain in dreams but Tony swears he can feel the blade going in and being pulled down... gutting him with ridiculous ease. Unbelievably those were the better of his dreams.

The more disturbing ones would have him shooting Gerald or Ducky for Tony's mistake. He couldn't actually look Gibbs in the eyes after dreaming that, not for the rest of the day at least. Fearing that the man would simply look at him and know. Gibbs would just know that he couldn't do anything right, that he was a liability to the team... that he always had been. He didn't think he could stand seeing disappointment in those azure eyes, the more innate fear though was that Gibbs would realise and fire him on the spot. Tony knew that it probably wouldn't happen but...

So yeah he was conflicted.

Chapter Seven

Where Do I Fit

And where is it that you think you fit, in their New World.

Blade, Blade Trinity

It was as Tony moped off home almost a week after Kate had said that he was conflicted that Gibbs finally decided to call him on it. Everyone else had already headed home for the night and Gibbs cornered him in the break room. Tony turned and upon seeing Gibbs silhouetted in the door of the darkened break room gasped and jumped. Gibbs flicked on the light.

"God boss you try'en to give me a heart attack." Tony cried.

"It'd be a reaction." He said.

"What?" Tony asked.

"Ever since the terrorist Tony you've been acting like a more neurotic version of me." Gibbs said. Tony smiled obligatorily. There was none of his usual goofy warmness to it. That made Gibbs's heart pang. He brushed a lock of stray hair from Tony's eyes. His hands then slipping down to the younger agent's shoulders For the first time in ages Tony actually looked at his face. Not quite his eyes but an improvement none the less.

"What's wrong Tony." He asked.

"I'm thinking of leaving." Tony whispered, the words spilling out like vomit.

"The building?" Gibbs said jokingly. Trying vainly to make him smile


Gibbs's face was blank, if there was a joke he didn't get it.

"What?" he asked gently

"I think I've gotten as much as I can from NCIS." Tony whispered defeatedly, no longer even looking in Gibbs's general direction. Gibbs, who opened his mouth, then closed it.

"I don't think I'm needed here." Tony said.

"Your always needed here Tony. But if you really feel unsatisfied here I can always talk to the directors about a transfer." Gibbs said slowly.

"Boss..." Tony said guilt welling in his stomach.

"Its okay DiNozzo, McGee was looking for a permanent position anyway so... bye Tony." Gibbs said disjointedly like he was unsure of where he was. Tony tried to speak but Gibbs was already out of the room. A retreating figure in the blackness. They really don't need me. He thought dejectedly.

Gibbs hopped into his car stunned. He was numb from shock. Like someone had just dowsed him with ice water on a forty-degree day. But the iciness was starting to recede. White-hot anger melting it. Pretty soon Gibbs was seething. How dare he... How can he just walk out on the department, on us, on me. Gibbs fumed. Little bastard I'll choke him.

Gibbs screeched around the streets, obeying speed limits becoming the last thing on his mind. He felt irrational anger rolling through his entire body, soaking every fibre. He was choking on the bitter taste. Gibbs hadn't felt this pissed since his first wife had given him the devoice papers and even then that anger hadn't been underlaid by feelings of hurt and betrayal because he'd seen it coming. Tony quitting had hit a nerve that Gibbs would never admit to having.

Miles dripped passed like water, it seemed the angrier Gibbs got the more he ranted to himself and the more he ranted the more pissed he became with Tony. It was a vicious unending cycle... Well actually it ended rather abruptly when Gibbs stopped his car and stepped up to Tony's door. I'm gonna kill the little bastard and bury his body next to my spare boat parts. Was then his single thought.

Chapter Eight

With You

I'm standing on a bridge

I'm waiting in the dark

I thought that you'd be here by now…

Advril Lavigne, I'm With You

Tony sat alone in the dark, looking at his shadows thrown across his cream walls. It wasn't as if he'd wanted Gibbs to fall to his knees and beg him not to go... but god a simple 'I want you to stay', was that too much to ask.

Tony shifted, stomach squirming with uncertainty. Maybe it was for the best, everything Tony had said earlier was true. He couldn't really go anywhere else in NCIS. That would be his job for however long he stayed. Unless of cause Gibbs died... The thought made his stomach lurch. Gibbs was driving him crazy lately but he certainty didn't want the man dead. Beside it wasn't anything Gibbs was doing, it was himself making him crazy. He was obsessed with having the man's approval. Obsessed with it, coveting it and it was making him nutty. He didn't know why but he needed to hear that he was needed and he needed to hear it from Gibbs.

Someone knocked on his door, interrupting his self-depredating thoughts. Actually it was more like someone trying to bust it down.

Gibbs was never a patient person and he also never could control his temper with Tony. Which is why it doesn't surprise him when he slams on Tony's door even though there was no conscious thought behind it. He considered trying knocking, before banging on the door a second time.

"Tony open this fucking door." Gibbs said realising only after how insane he sounded. He still didn't care. Surprisingly the door opened a few minutes later.

"Boss?" Tony asked feigning the after-effects of sleep.

"Don't play with me DiNozzo." He growled, knowing the younger agent had been doing no such thing. He pushed past Tony and into the living room.

"Where precisely the fuck do you get off trying to pull this I'm moving to another department shit." He yelled.

"It was just a thought." Tony mumbled, dazed. He'd never see this type of anger from his boss before. Gibbs always seemed to keep some kind of leash on his temper, except for now.

"What directly the fuck do you think you doing?" Gibbs gritted in a voice that sent shivers down Tony's spine.

"Boss I.. I..." He stuttered. Gibbs shoved him against the wall, pinning him there. Gibbs's body crushed against his, his breath buffeting hotly against Tony's face and Tony inhaled it as he gasped at the force being exerted on his shoulders. The pressure on his arms only increased.

"What Tony? You. Were. What?" Gibbs snarled in his face. Tears settled into the corners of his eyes. Gibbs must have thought him a real chid then. He was crying for Christ's fucking sake.

"I thought you didn't... you said McGee was and I didn't think I was needed..." Tony said brokenly.

"Jesus fucking Christ Tony." Gibbs mumbled, resting his forehead against Tony's.

"You stupid fucking bastard." He sighed pulling back from Tony, his hand cupped Tony's cheek.

"Tony I like McGee as much as the next person and he'd be a nice addition to the team, but he's not you. I want you sitting at the desk across from me." He said.

"Sorry boss." Tony swallowed.

"Don't be sorry and don't come in tomorrow." Tony's heart skipped a beat.

"Take a long weekend, get drunk, get laid, whatever you have to do to get your shit sorted out Tony. 'Cos I want you in on Monday." Gibbs said releasing him and walking to the door. He opened it and then turned back to the stunned agent.

"Oh and Tony if your even a minute late I'm finding you and cuffing you to my wrist." He said with a smile. Tony didn't think he was joking though.

"Is that suppose to be a deterrent boss." Tony sniped.

"Try it and see." Gibbs said as he stepped out the door.

Chapter Nine

Happy Now?

Oh, a sticky dessert… Why that as foolish as an intelligent women…

My Chauffer

"Oh ho. So feel better now?" Abbey asked Tony over the phone, using a ridiculous somewhat Chinese accent. Sunday Midafternoon sunlight streamed waningly through Tony's kitchen windows as he stood making himself a smoothie.

"A lot. There's still some things but... Yeah I feel better."

Tony took the weekend the way Gibbs had suggested, well ordered and whereas he didn't get drunk or get laid... He did work out a few of this issues.

Truth be told he was ready to go back to work on Sunday morning, funnily enough though he accidentally overslept on Monday and was late in.

Scarily Tony found Gibbs waiting for him when he arrived.

"Your five minutes late DiNozzo." It wasn't as though Gibbs was standing over his desk with cuffs in hand but rather he was sitting at his desk finishing up case files. That was scary enough though considering Gibbs never finished up files at that time of day, it just didn't happen.

"Sorry Boss alarm clock broke." Tony said sitting down.

"Your lucky we have actual cases today DiNozzo I might need the cuffs for someone else." Gibbs said as he walked passed DiNozzo and into the conference room.

"Cuffs?" Kate asked as she sat down. Cripes, he really was waiting for me!

"Cuffs? What Cuffs?" Kate asked irritatingly.

"Nothing. How's Dwayne?" Tony said, setting up for the day.

"Wouldn't know, turns out he's too much like you." Kate said authoritatively.

"Turns out he was too much like you." Tony whined quietly.

"What was that?" Kate snapped.

"I said so who's the new guy." Tony mumbled, looking over his paperwork.

"Why would there be a new guy." Kate asked.

"'Cos there usually is." Tony said.

"Ya know Tony not everyone's like you." Tony simply looked at her.

"His names Myer and he's Sweetish." Kate said with a giggle.

"Good for you Kate." Tony said, opening a file.

"Tony are you alright." Kate asked, unsure of this 'new' Tony.

"Right as rain, Kate." He said. She watched him long after they'd finished talking. Whoever this was he wasn't Tony, not exactly anyway.

It seemed to Kate to be a permeant change too judging by how he handled the next case. It was an arduous one. Involving the death of a guy on special ops, so they'd been working in a timeframe. The trooper in question had turned out to be gay and in the closet, his wife had found out and he committed suicide.

Tony managed to handle himself during the case, all and all he seemed better than he had since... Kate searched her memory and couldn't come up with a time for when Tony had stopped being himself. She'd just noticed the strain on him one day and it just didn't seem to leave.

He seemed fine now though, only now that he did, Gibbs really didn't.

Chapter Ten

D Day

Who would have thought all this bad shit could happen on such a beautiful day.

Blue Streak

The day was warm with a cool breeze permeating it. Huge globulus white clouds hid the sun for a majority of the morning and the air was dry rather than sticky.

It was fabulous weather and Kate groaned over having to be stuck inside with Gibbs. Especially considering the mood he was in.

She confronted Tony about it and he brushed it off the way they always did.

"Kate Gibbs is like a dog. He'll gnaw at an old bone until you throw him a steak. When he's done with the steak he'll go back to the old bone. The terrorist is Gibbs's old bone." Tony had said dismissively.

"Yeah well lets hope he doesn't choke on it." Kate had bitten.

"Who chokes on what?" Gibbs asked as he walked passed.

"Oh, nothing." Kate said.

"DiNozzo I wanna see you for a minute." He said and kept on walking, straight into the break room. Tony stared after him for a moment in shock then got up and followed.

"Boss?" He questioned as he entered the room. Gibbs stepped passed him, shut and locked the door.

"Okay boss ya startin' ta scare me." Tony said smiling nervously. His apprehension only increased when Gibbs handed him a coffee. Tony sipped it tentatively, Gibbs watching all the while. Tony was sure it was poisoned, he'd done something to the man and now Gibbs had decided to off him. But he wasn't game enough to not drink it. It was sweet and strong and when he didn't keel over Tony took that as a good sign.

"Little strong." He said trying to break up the silence.

"Strong is better." Gibbs said shortly then stopped staring and turned away from him going to lean against the counter.

"So what's up boss?" Tony asked sitting down across from him.

"I want you to profile a terrorist for me." He said.

"Oh, god Gibbs the way you were acting I though you were about to kill me for something. But yeah, sure, of course. Which one?" Tony rambled. Gibbs raised a brow and gave a lazy grin.

"The one you stabbed." Tony's mouth fell open.

"What'd wanna know?" Tony said shifting uncomfortably.

"Everything." Tony drew in a breath, not knowing what to say but too scared not to comply.

"Well there's the obvious he's intelligent, educated, organised and very controlled. He thinks all his moves right through from start to finish in a matter of seconds. Defiantly extensive military training, tactics, weapons..." Tony paused and stood, sipping his coffee. He decided just to let it all out, Gibbs had said he wanted everything.

"He's not impulsive though it may seem that way, everything is considered. He didn't seem like most terrorists."

"What's he in it for?" Gibbs asked.

"I don't know he doesn't seem the martyr type and as for the whole forty virgins thing, well I don't think he'd have any trouble getting girls on his own. He's good-looking, charming, salon haircut, fresh manicure, expensive cologne..."

"You interested DiNozzo?" Gibbs asked as he watched a frantically pacing Tony. The man was deep in thought, new territory for Tony and for a second Gibbs didn't think he'd heard him.

"Don't go there..." Tony said putting up a finger and then continuing.

"Everything about him breathed of an expensive lifestyle, he carried this air of arrogance and yet we've no idea who he is. He's intelligent and yet he breaks into our lab to retrieve a blood sample that probably wouldn't have be linked to anyone anyway." Tony ground.

"What makes you say he's tactically smart?" Gibbs asked.

"He was smart enough not to make idle threats and yet not stupid enough to kill a government agent. He was smart enough not to kill you. Wound an agent and every other department sends their condolences, kill one and you've got a truckload of pissed off cops on your hands." Tony said licking his lips.

"Everything about him is a contraction boss. I mean he obviously has a cause and yet he doesn't go around spouting sanctimonious bullshit like the others do. He's not a martyr and yet death isn't a problem for him. He doesn't find any pleasure in killing and yet its not a problem for him either..."

"Lot of insight." Gibbs said quietly. Tony stopped pacing and stared at him, heart beating a little faster than it usually did.

"Sorry guess I've been thinking about this a lot." Tony mumbled looking down at his now empty cup.

"I'll give you the rest but the last part seems like your reaching a little. Anything to actually base that on." Gibbs said. Tony shrugged.

"He shot Gerald without a second thought. It's not exactly killing but it follows along the same lines and he, in order to escape he had to face you. He was wearing a vest but you could easily have shot him in the head," Another shrug.

"It was an acceptable risk." Gibbs shook his head.

"He could have killed me, they would have dropped gas bombs and he could have escaped that way."

"Killing a cop's sticky." Tony offered.

"No it's more than that." Gibbs said.

"What then?" Tony asked.

"Maybe the only way for him to feel alive is to face death." Gibbs mumbled.

"Adrenaline junkie." Tony said, Gibbs looked at him.

"Come on." Tony said grabbing his jacket as he bolted out of the break room and passed his desk. Kate was still seated at hers.

"Were are we going?" She asked.

"I'm taking Ducky to lunch, your welcome to tag along." He said.

"Alright, can't pass it up if your paying." She said.

"What's wrong." She asked went he didn't respond.

"Gibbs just brought me coffee." He said with an air of tension and she got the distinct impression that it was more than just that.

"Yes I distinctly remember Gibbs being like this during, his last divorce." Ducky said.

"We can't divorce him Ducky." Kate laughed.

"Well you wouldn't want to my dear." He said.

"What happened." Kate asked.

"Gibbs was tracking a man who'd raped and murdered a ten year old girl. Angelic little thing she was. He eventually caught him but not before he'd done it again." Ducky said sagely.

"See now that's just... there isn't words." Kate said pushing her salad aside.

"Yes well Gibbs became a little hard to live with after that." Ducky said sipping his drink.

"Hi Katie." A man said stepping up beside Ducky. He turned to look up at him.

"Oh, hi! Everyone this is Myer." Kate said blushing.

"Well I'm too late to have lunch with you but how about coffee." He said.

"Well actually we're still..."

"No Kate go." Tony said.

"Are you sure you don't mind." She said.

"Have fun my dear." Ducky murmured.

"I'm late anyway, so go have fun and I'll keep Gibbs busy. Ducky prefers his own company anyway." Tony said throwing down a few bills.

"What do you need to do?" Kate asked.

"I've gotta conference with Gitmo." He said standing.

"Oh well bye." She said.

"See ya Ducky." Tony said as he walked away. The man waved having a mouthful of food.

Tony headed down the street, traffic loud around him. He stopped at a crossing and was rewarded with having to watch an idiot show off to the girls across from him. Only the girls were gushing and blushing and the guy was watching him. Tony shifted uncomfortably. Then the guy lifted his visor and everything made sense, his brain also shut down for about five seconds before he palmed his gun and ran into on coming traffic.

Chapter Eleven

Do It On Someone Else's Time!

Abstainer n. A weak person who yields to the temptation of denying himself a pleasure

Ambrose Bierce, The Devil's Dictionary, 1911

"McGee..." Gibbs snapped stalking across the room.

"Boss." McGee said standing up.

"Sit down."

"Sorry..." He said dropping back down.

"Is the program fished yet."

"No boss sorry." Gibbs pulled away from the desk with a growl.

"Where are Kate and DiNozzo?" Gibbs hissed.

"I t-t-think they may have went to lunch with Ducky." He stuttered.

"You think or you don't know."

"I'm not sure. Sorry boss."

"How long ago and stop apologising it's a sign of weakness."

"Sorry I mean about an hour... or so ago." Gibbs had started to walk away, but stopped at 'or so' and started back.

"I want 'or so' in minutes."

"Umm about fifty." Gibbs stormed down to autopsy.

"Ducky where the hell are Kate and DiNozzo." Gibbs growled.

"Last time I saw them both Kate was off with her boyfriend and Tony was off to a conference with Gitmo." Gibbs hissed and stormed out.

The conference room was empty of only Tony it seemed, most of the rest of the building was crowded in there for some reason or another. Though Tony hadn't showed for the meeting at all and this only served to irritate Gibbs further. As did his conversation with Hamous. He bumped into Kate on his way out and she was unfortunate party who copped it.

"What the hell do you think your doing." He snarled.

"Gibbs I'm a little late..." She defended.

"Ten minutes is a little late an hour is ridiculous. I expect this shit from Tony not you. You wanna make out with your new boyfriend Kate do it on your own time and until I fire you which may be anytime now... you're on my time, so you can cancel any future dates that you may have." He shouted.

"Gibbs you really need to take a reality check and read Moby Dick. The obsession you have with this Hamous guy is..." Kate bit back.

"The Hamous guy, the bastard, the arse. We call him everything but his name Kate because we don't know it. I want his name and I want it today and unless you wanna turn in your badge you don't leave again until I get it... and I've read Moby Dick." Gibbs growled and stalked off.

"MCGEE." He almost jumped from his seat.

"When Tony gets in put him under house arrest."

"Maybe he just got held up." McGee offered and then withered under the others glare.

"McGee Tony is knee-deep up shit creek and guess what?" He snarled.


"He doesn't have a damn paddle. So being held up... is the least of his problems."

Chapter Twelve

Knee Deep

Life don't have to be… No bed of roses…

Tony sat stiffly in he front seat of a tiny navy car. His hands were cuffed behind his back and every time the car jostled it felt as though they were about to be ripped out.

His phone started ringing steadily and was snatched up by one of the guys in back.

"Who's Gibbs?" He asked, Tony gritted his teeth and refused to answer. the guy driving backhanded him, splitting his lip.

"Who is it?"

"It's my boyfriend he calls me whenever he leaves the office." Tony said and got another slap. He was curious as to whether the slap was because they didn't believe him or they did.

Soon after they pulled into a barn, nothing but empty countryside greeting them. That and the one face Tony never wanted to see again.

"Agent DiNozzo so nice to see you again." His face darkened at Tony's lip. He shouted at one of the men across the room and then looked back to Tony.

"I apologise for Kasam striking you." he said as he pulled Tony from the car.

"Well at least he didn't shot my shoulder out with a nine millimetre." Tony bit.

"And how is Gerald?" He questioned.

"Still in rehab. Asks everyday if you're dead yet." Tony spat. The cuffs were removed and Tony turned punching the little bastard who'd slapped him twice. He wasn't happy about it. He picked himself up of the floor and the bigger bastard stepped between them. Putting a hand in the middle of his chest, the bane of Tony existence pushed Kasam back a couple of steps and shouted at him until he left in frustration.

"Satisfied?" He questioned turning back to Tony.

"No... He smacked me twice." Tony spat.

"Well to Kasam being hit by an undisciplined American brat is twice the insult." He laughed.

"How does he feel about being shot by one." That drew a smile.

"Still so fiery." He drawled, placing a finger beneath Tony's chin, he slapped it away.

"Why did Kasam strike him?"

"He wouldn't tell who was calling him." One of the guys said tossing across Tony's phone.

"Argh Gibbs called you."

"I should probably call him back." Tony said.

"Your right, of course... But after we get some ice for your lip." He said smiling as he led Tony from the barn and into the house. Tony couldn't help but glance at the lethal looking missiles as they left, there were about half dozen and the very sight of them made his skin crawl.

His lip was tended to quickly by the arse, in a touch so gentle that it only served to put Tony more on edge. No one who could shoot someone in cold blood should have a touch like that.

"You said I could call Gibbs." Tony said pressing ice to his stinging lip.

"Of course under one condition." He said smoothly.

"Naturally," Tony laughed sarcastically.

"And what am I to tell him." He watched Tony closely for several minutes.

"You became quite ill after lunch. You went to emergency where it was diagnosed as food poisoning. They pumped your stomach, gave you an IV and sent you home. You'll be fine tomorrow you just need sleep." He said calmly.

"And if I don't say that?" He said. The bastard stared at him for a moment.

"Myer tell agent DiNozzo what you will do to agent Todd tonight after dinner." He said looking past Tony, he shifted to watch the creep also.

"I will put a bullet in the back of her head as I run my fingers through her hair." I knew there was a reason for my skin creeping around him. Tony thought as he picked up the phone.

McGee's hands shook on the key broad slightly as he entered in the new info that Gibbs had just gotten off of Ducky. Being within three square feet of Gibbs these days made McGee jittery. Today especially, he just seemed to radiate anger and pent up frustration. Kate didn't seem any better after their fight either. Thankfully Gibbs seemed to grow bored with looking over his shoulder and was now standing several feet behind him. A small respite, but a respite none the less.

Gibbs's cell phone trilled in the background and McGee's hands jumped slightly on the key broad at the sharp sound his nerves frayed. Gibbs mumbled a few quick words, clicked his phone closed and was back to breathing down McGee's neck in record time.

"What was that about." McGee stuttered, trying to take Gibbs's focus off himself.

"Tony ate some bad oysters." Gibbs growled stalking off. McGee breathed a sigh of relief.