This is the final chapter! Thank you to everyone that reviewed this story, couldn't have finished this story without you :) and thanks to my beta GB, thanks as always. I have no big stories planned but i'm sure it won't be long before I think of another way to torture Tony.

Tony scrunched up his eyes and shifted restlessly in the bed. His feet wiggled under the covers and he pushed his head further into the mattress. The more awake he became, the more he wanted to fall back to sleep as he began to feel the pain. His eyes burst open and he gasped. Each breath he took sent fiery daggers through his lungs.

"Hey DiNozzo." He recognized the voice but was still too out of it to recognize the face that leant over him. He squirmed and his muscles contracted painfully.

"DiNozzo!" The voice called again this time louder.

"Please," Tony whispered.

"Hey!" The voice shouted, "I need some help in here!" A hand gripped his and squeezed it tightly. "Focus Tony, squeeze my hand." Tony obeyed the order without questions and squeezed the hand as hard as he could. He barely noticed the second figure that leaned over him.

"He's in pain." The first voice spoke and less than a minute later Tony felt the pain subside, warmth spread through his body. He relaxed back onto the bad and sighed in relief. "You with me DiNozzo?"

Finally the voice and face merged together. Tony angled his head and squinted his eyes to get a better look at the figure. "Boss?" He asked weakly.

"Who else?"

"What r'you doin h'r," he mumbled.

Gibbs smiled, "Why do you think?"


"You remember Delgardo taking you into the woods?" Gibbs received a slight nod. "They tied you to a tree and beat you."


"Dead….you nearly joined him too…for a moment there in the woods I thought you were…" Gibbs didn't finish his sentence, he didn't need too.

"M'like a ….cat….nine…lives."

"I think you used up those nine lives years ago DiNozzo. You're on your twentieth life at least."

Tony smiled drowsily, "Others?"

Gibbs nodded towards the door, "Outside, fast asleep probably, they've been here all night."


"No DiNozzo. They think they're here to see a different Tony DiNozzo," Gibbs replied sarcastically.

Tony sighed again. He looked down, patting his bad to search for injuries. He hissed when he pressed against stitching at his side.

"Chest tube," Gibbs supplied Tony with the answer to his unasked question. "They took it out early this morning."

"What else?"

"The bullet wounds ripped open. You have some pretty bad bruising and some broken ribs."

Tony smiled, "That all?"

"Count yourself lucky, it could have been a lot worse."

Tony settled further under the covers, "I knew you had m'back….boss."

He felt a hand pat his wrist, "Get some sleep DiNozzo."

Tony closed his eyes. "Yes boss," he mumbled as he quickly fell unconscious.

"Did not."

"Did too."

"Did not."

"Did too."

"Abby, you did not think Tony was alive."


"I'm sorry Abs, but those were real tears."

"Well you cried too."

"Did not."

"Did too."

"Did not."

"I bet Gibbs knew he was alive."

"There was no way Gibbs knew."

"Oh really?"

"Abs everyone thought he was dead."

"Except for Tony, and the Director and Doctor Todd."

"Well they don't count!"

"Why not!"

"They just don't!"

"Do too."

"Do not."

"Do too."

Tony cracked open one eye. "Do I have to separate you two?" He asked. The figures standing either side of his bed stopped and looked down at him. He'd only just woken when the pair began to bicker. He didn't know what was worse, the searing pain in his lungs when he'd woken earlier, or the chatter keeping him awake now.

"Tony!" Abby cried happily.

When she opened her arms and began to lean down for a hug, Tony stopped her."I have cracked ribs and bullet holes, probably not a good idea to squeeze me till I can't breath."

She grinned and continued to lean down, kissing his forehead and leaving a black lip mark in its place. "I'm glad you're not dead."

"Me too Abs," Tony replied, "Where's Gibbs?"

"Coffee run," McGee answered. "Ziva went too."


"Had to go back home to look in on Mrs Mallard. He promised to be back later though." Tony nodded.

"You feeling okay?" Abby asked, brushing Tony's hair back soothingly.

"Mmhmm," Tony answered, closing his eyes and sighing contentedly. "Drugs are a man's best friend."

"Enjoy it while it lasts DiNozzo," a third voice said and Tony's eyes snapped open.

"Boss," Tony greeted with a lazy smile. A second later a couple more familiar faces entered the room. "Zee-va! Ducky!"

The medical examiner made his way to Tony's bedside. He took Tony's wrist in one hand and looked at his watch. "How are you doing Anthony?"

"You tell me."

"You've looked better," Ziva smirked.

Tony looked past Ducky and glared at Ziva, "I was talking to Ducky."

"Well my boy, looks to me like you'll make a full recovery," Ducky answered the question. "As long as you take it easy and don't try to come back to work before you're completely better," he added, raising an eyebrow at Tony.

"Hey McGee and…" he paused, "McGee wouldn't be alive if I hadn't returned to work early." McGee and Kate he had nearly said and he knew everyone was thinking the same thing.

"Rest DiNozzo," Gibbs broke the silence, "That's an order."

"Boss!" Tony whined.

"Just because you have a concussion doesn't mean I won't save the head slaps for another time," Gibbs warned and Tony's eyes widened.

"Is no-one glad to see me alive?"

"Aww baby," Abby gave him another kiss, "I'm glad you're alive." Suddenly her eyes widened "Oh no!"

"What's wrong?" Tony asked.

"My necklace, the necklace you brought back for me from Germany, I put it on your coffin!"

"You mean this necklace?" Tony pulled something from under the covers and dangled it in front of Abby.

He tilted her head to one side and frowned in confusion, she took the item off Tony. "My necklace...but how?"

He glanced at Gibbs and then back at Abby. "What? Gibb's is the only allowed to have secrets?" Tony grinned, "Does that earn me another kiss?" Abby braced Tony's faced with both hands and planted a large kiss on Tony's lips. Tony's grin widened as Abby pulled away. "Nice."

"Whoa," another voice exclaimed and Tony looked round to see a young woman in a white coat, a stethoscope hung around her neck. The woman's eyes were wide. "Never seen so many people packed into such a small room, looks like you're a loved man Tony DiNozzo."

"No Doc, just one who rose from the dead," he corrected. She frowned and he shook his head. "Doesn't matter," he told her.

"Okay, well, as nice as this is? Tony really needs his rest, and you all look like you need some too," she addressed the group. She fiddled with Tony's IV before leaving the room.

"We'll be back tomorrow," McGee promised.

"I know you will Probie."

"Get some rest dear boy."

Tony rolled his eyes, "Yes Ducky."

"Try to leave the nurses alone," Ziva told him.

"I am making no promises."

"I'll bring you candy tomorrow," Abby whispered into Tony's ear so the doctor couldn't hear.

"Looking forward to it," Tony whispered back. The group left the room, leaving Gibbs and Tony alone.

Tony frowned, "What happened to my replacement?"

"Back at the office taking care of all the paper work," Gibbs answered.

"What happens to him now?"

"Well," Gibbs began, taking a step towards the bed, "He'll stay until you're ready to go back and then he'll be transferred somewhere."

"Lucky him," Tony grinned. "Guess you're still stuck with me?"

"Guess so," Gibbs turned towards the door. "You'll be here when I return?" He asked.

"I'll be fast asleep," Tony yawned. "But I'll be here," he reassured.