Disclaimer: I don't own NCIS. I really, really wish I did, but I don't.

There was nothing unusual about the birth.

It was shortly after 10 pm when the young woman was admitted to the hospital maternity ward. Barbara Hodgson had been an obstetrics nurse for over 30 years, and several single mothers had delivered babies during that time. Most had family members or friends with them, but occasionally a woman, like this one, would come in alone.

In the years that Barbara had been nursing, she had seen women in all stages of labour arriving at the hospital. Women in false labour, women in the first stage of labour, women in the second stage of labour, women arriving with only minutes to spare, even women who were a few minutes too late. Nurse Barbara had seen it all. It wasn't at all unusual that the examination revealed that this expectant mother was almost fully dilated.

When Nurse Barbara had started nursing in 1975, at age 22, she was shocked and surprised by the variety of ways that women handled childbirth. Some women cried, some screamed, some yelled, and some were completely calm. When she had her own children, several years later, she came to understand all of those responses. Except calmness, she would never understand calmness. The calmness that this woman maintained was admirable, and while it wasn't the prevalent response, it wasn't unusual.

Nurse Barbara had participated in the delivery of hundreds of babies. All mothers were exhausted after delivering, and those without a companion to buoy them up, often faded more quickly. In fact, not all mothers wanted to hold their child immediately, but in this case, the new mother dutifully held her new baby for 10 minutes and then requested that her baby be taken for the proper testing and procedures.

Over the years, breastfeeding had gone in and out of style several times. So when the new mother informed Nurse Barbara that her baby would be bottle fed, Barbara noted the information on the chart. She felt that new mothers were already exhausted, and never argued with them over the sometimes controversial topic. When the new mother requested that her child be fed in the nursery so that she could rest for a few hours, Nurse Barbara asked her if she was sure, but the mother remained adamant that she be left alone.

In fact, up until this very moment, that was the only peculiarity regarding this birth. But now Nurse Barbara was standing next to a bassinet containing a beautiful baby in an otherwise empty room, reading a not instructing her to contact NCIS.

There had been nothing unusual about this birth, but now she would never forget it.

A/N: I did some research for this, but I don't claim to be an expert, so I'm sure that there are mistakes. I also realize that the likelihood of a new mother being able to walk out of a hospital unnoticed is little, but I'm taking artistic license. Please review!