Note: Ignore fourth season. This story focuses on Abby in the final episode of season three.

Thankyou: I listened to Regina Spektor's song 'Better' whilst I wrote this. On repeat for an hour.

Authors note: A barrage of emotions and thoughts flew through my own head when Gibbs left. And the thing which struck me the most was the look on Abby's face as she realised he was leaving. This is Abby's mind speaking. R&R


Five stages

Gibbs placed his finger over her trembling lips. She felt stifled, not able to speak. not able to say all the things she wished she could. not able to tell him not to go. not able to ask why or where. Her stomach twisted in knots, threatening tears to spill, if she just released them. Staring into his eyes she knew it was no use. He kissed her gently on the cheek. And he left.

He left.

And then she was alone and the world was drowned by the silence in her heart.

Denial

He could not have left her here alone. Not saying one word. He would come back, he would not be away long. Perhaps this was all a trick. This was not like him. This was all a mistake. This was insane. Her world was upside down. The room was spinning. There was no way in a million years Gibbs would desert her, leave her without explaination.

But he had.

Anger

What the hell was he thinking?! How could he leave her here all alone when he knew that he was what got her up in the morning. He was the only reason she was working here. The only way she could stay happy was with him nearby. The selfish bastard cared about no one but himself. No one! And he said nothing! He didn't even say goodbye. Like he was doing her some kind of favour by leaving and not saying a word. That just made her feel worthless. A kiss is not an explanation. She felt the rage and tears mix until she lay in a heap on the floor, surrounded by all her fears.

Feeling she had lost it all.

Depression

Or did he know that he was what got her up in the morning, what made her life worth living, what kept her day bright. She had never told him. Only assuming that he knew how she felt. She was selfish for wanting him to stay. He might never come back. She might never see him again. How could she go on and live without him. How could she pull herself out of bed in the morning and enter the quiet lab, knowing that there was no silver haired fox sneaking in and leaving caff-pows and smiles with her. What was she left with. He was family. He was... she would not bring herself to admit it. Instead she let the empty feeling in the pit of her stomach, the cold grasp on her heart consume her every thought, her all. This was the longest stage of them all. She gave up hope. Gave up wishing praying thinking.

Let the feelings creep into every vein, let them flow through her blood. Let her eyes deaden and stare. Let her heart slow, her mind stop, her fears lay quiet. Feeding the greif that lay atop her.

Black and heavy.

Bargaining

Maybe if she went after him. Followed him into the elevator. Maybe if she wouldn't let him leave. If she grabbed a hold of his shirt and clung to her chest. Maybe if she followed him and would not leave. If she went with him. That hope was the thing that brought her mind upwards from the floor.

But she stood still. Not knowing how to react. This was not Gibbs.

Acceptance

Perhaps this act was not a selfish one. Maybe he had not done this for himself. Maybe he had a reason.

But for now there was only one thing she could accept.

She was alone.

He was gone. And she did not know if he would ever return. And she let the feeling of sadness seep over her, cover her. Until she was gone.

And the spark in her eyes dimmed.

The spring in her step disappeared.

Her humour faded and waned.

And time stopped.