I don't own anything inn NCIS

Ok this story is a Tony centric whumper but I've also tried to add some Tabby in there. Nothing major though mind. This is my second NCIS story so I hope you enjoy… and try not to judge too hard please.

I'd like to thank fantastic Super Em for being a fantastic Beta

Tackle

After a hell of a case, it was the most satisfying feeling to confront the culprit. There were three things in this world that created a little bloom of warmth in the pit of Tony's stomach. The first was pizza and a movie, the second was hot women jogging without bras and the third was watching a murderer squirm when they finally realized the jig was up and that they'd be spending a long time in jail.

Unfortunately the little bloom of warmth from finishing today's case never quite blossomed. Instead of saying "you got me" like Tony liked, today's culprit had to be a runner.

This meant it was up to Tony to frantically chase the enormously built and surprisingly nimble man for what seemed hundreds of blocks, all the while knowing Gibbs would head him off around the next corner after having driven the car there.

As well as being large and nimble, it seemed this murderer also had a brain larger than the common ape. Watching the man run into an alley and knowing full well Gibbs would be at the end, Tony sprinted across the street, narrowly missing several collisions with cars and pedestrians.

He was panting heavily at this point, but the end to this long….LONG run was at the end of the alley and Tony couldn't be happier. Approaching the entrance to the alley, he knew the scum bag couldn't be too far ahead… perhaps though Gibbs already had him.

Tony was just glad this case would be over. It had been long, tedious…. and devastating. Due to a lack of evidence the slippery bastard had killed two more victims before they caught him.

Rounding the corner into the alleyway, Tony's mind was already in party mode for the after-hell-case celebration he and Abby had planned, when a tonne of bricks hit him in the side.

This scum bag was smart. He hadn't run up the alley like a mouse to a cheese trap or a fly into a Venus flytrap; he had rounded the corner and waited for Tony only to tackle him to the ground.

The bastard was large and as the pair flew into the awaiting pavement, Tony could feel every ounce. Pain exploded in his side and he distinctly heard a CRACK as 250 pounds of pure muscle pounded Tony's trim form into the unforgiving street. The man recovered quickly, raising a fist in anticipation of Tony's face, when the fist in question was suddenly captured.

Turning to face the new controller of his wrist, the murderer came face-to-face with one Leroy Jethro Gibbs. The sudden blanching of the man's face was almost comical, not that Tony noticed. All his efforts at the moment were going into breathing through the agonizing pain in his side.

Tony didn't even notice when the man was lead away, or when Ziva and Gibbs came to surround him.

The first thing Tony was truly aware of through his shallow breaths was Gibbs.

"DiNozzo… what the hell? You were supposed to chase him to us!"

When Tony tried and failed to answer through his troubled breathing and burning side, Gibbs almost looked concerned.

"DiNozzo, you alright?"

"Y-yeah boss…. Sorry boss!" Holding out his hand for a help-up, Tony was left hanging. Having confirmed that his senior field agent was in fact alright, Gibbs went back to the case.

Turning to Ziva for the hand up, Tony swayed on his feet for a minute before wrapping his arm around his chest with a slight groan.

"Are you really okay, Tony? That was quite the tackle."

"I'm g-good" Tony grunted before remembering, "But where were you David, superstar catcher and chaser that you are?"

Ziva shrugged, "I thought you could handle it."

Tony was truly touched that Ziva thought he was just as capable of catching the bad guy as she was…. until she added, "Plus you need the exercise."

Tony's face transformed into indignation as he followed her into the truck.

XXXXXX

Back at NCIS headquarters, the only activity Tony felt up to was sitting and groaning loudly. The ride back had been a new form of torture for him. Because of the tackle, Ziva had insisted on driving the truck which probably wasn't the best course of action. Every high speed bump and swerved turn sent pain shooting through his side. Tony didn't think he'd ever been so grateful to reach headquarters.

Luckily Gibbs wasn't in the squad room at the moment as he was in MTAC. If he had been, he would have surely ordered Tony to go see Ducky and to stop being so noisy.

As it was, Ziva had already told him to go see Duck, but since he didn't have to listen to her, he had just blown her off. With each groan came an annoyed glare in his direction from Ziva because of Tony's stubbornness.

Tony never saw the concerned expression crossing her face after each glare.

Gibbs walked into the room holding what Tony estimated was his sixth cup of coffee since 9 a.m. The coffee intake of the man had ceased to amaze Tony after a month working at NCIS, but how the cup magically arrived in his boss's hand when he had supposedly been in MTAC for two hours still got him.

Striding into the workspace and overseeing Ziva and her paperwork, Gibbs suddenly stopped in front of Tony.

Looking down at the man slouching in his chair, Gibbs raised an eyebrow, "DiNozzo, shouldn't you be doing something?"

Straightening in his chair in front of the boss wasn't the smartest move, as pain spread rapidly across his chest. Unfortunately, Tony couldn't suppress a grunt as he frantically clutched his side in an attempt to contain the fire that was his body.

Looking at Gibbs face he knew the man was five seconds away from ordering him to visit Ducky. There was no way he was going to spend the rest of his day being poked and prodded by the physician as he was bombarded with millions of boring facts.

Just before Gibbs opened his mouth, Tony used all his energy to stand up and quickly move to leave the room.

"Sure boss. You want me to go see how Abs is doing assembling the evidence. I'm on my way." Tony threw a wave over his back as he entered the elevator, leaving behind a room of worried faces.

In the elevator Tony slumped against the back wall, all pretenses of being painless left two floors up. With his arm securely wrapped around his burning ribs, Tony concentrated on taking small shallow breaths as he tried to get control over the pain.

When the elevator inevitably reached Abby's lab, Tony groaned realizing that the pretenses would have to come back on for the Goth's sake. Besides, Abby was a gazillion times the worrier either Gibbs or Ziva were.

Pushing off from the back wall, Tony stood motionless for a moment as the entire elevator spun around him.

"Get it together DiNozzo."

Finally, when the world was still… well still enough, Tony walked into Abby's lab, a forced smile plastered on his face. The blaring music was kicking the headache up a notch but there was no way he would tell Abby that.

The screaming match disguised as music had Abby twirling her pigtails in time with the beat. She hadn't noticed Tony yet, which was lucky as at that moment the room took another major tilt to the left. Grabbing the wall for support, Tony tried to wait it out. Unfortunately Abby had somehow heard the commotion through the music and was turning around.

Quickly leaning against the wall in what he hoped was a casual sprawl, Tony asked, "Is it the song which started the pigtails twirling or the pigtails twirling which started the song?"

"TONY!" Upon seeing him, Abby sprang off her chair to run full pelt towards him. Realizing what the caffeinated girl was going to do, Tony was left to grin and bear it.

'Boy this is going to hurt,' He thought just before Abby threw her arms around him and squeezed the living daylight out of him.

As hard as Tony tried, he just couldn't suppress a grunt of pain. It probably would have been a scream if he had any air left to scream with. Perhaps it was then fortunate Abby had squeezed all the air from him in her "hug".

Pulling back Abby began gushing, "Tony are you alright? I heard what happened."

Breathing shallowly Tony was still surprised enough to ask through pain, " W-what? Ho-ow?"

"I told her. It was some tackle." Looking up, Tony watched as McGee came out of the side.

"Probie, when did you get here?"

"What do you mean I've been hear the whole time" McGee looked confusedly in Tony's direction.

Damn, he must be really out of it to not even notice the man on the other side of a glass door. "Riiight, must have missed you." Chuckling, Tony couldn't suppress a second grunt. Grabbing his ribs Tony wished fervently that the Elephant now situated on them would get OFF.

"Tony…. you are NOT all right. Come here right now and sit down." Taking him by the arm Abby led Tony over to the computer chair. Pathetically, this didn't take much effort, neither did getting him to sit. Tony practically fell into the chair, not telling Abby that his legs had given out at the same time as she pushed him into the seat.

"Gee, Tony you really don't look so good." McGee came over to stand besides Abby as the pair scrutinized Tony's appearance. Being forensic geniuses they could do this very well. Luckily Tony was an undercover genius and had no trouble hiding the pain he was in. Okay, well maybe a little trouble.

"I'm fine Probie… and besides, Abby and I have plans. Don't you have anywhere to be?" Tony looked expectantly at McGee, ordering him to drop it. "Wait what am I saying – it's you, of course you don't."

"Fine… fine I'm leaving. See-ya Abs." With that McGee walked out of the room throwing one final glance in Tony's direction before exiting.

"So - we going to start this 'Bad Case Bash' or what?"

Looking up Tony realized Abby was still staring at him. Actually it looked like Abby hadn't moved a muscle or even blinked since he sat down.

Beginning to feel like bug under microscope, Tony nervously asked, "What?"

Breaking the spell, Abby pointed a finger in Tony's face accusingly.

"You're hurt… we are not having any "Bad Case Bash" tonight. I'm calling Ducky."

As she reached for the phone Tony grabbed her wrist looking into her face with his best puppy dog expression and begged, "Please Abs, don't. I'm fine really… all I need is a bit of pizza and a good movie. I swear the only thing we'll be doing is sitting back and slacking off."

Just for good measure Tony added, "Please Abby, don't let me be tormented further today with Ducky's prodding and rambling."

Abby gave Tony one last suspicious glare before her hardened expression melted away, "You better not be lying to me Anthony Donatello Dinozzo."

Tony flashed her a grin before adding, "Would I do that?"

Of course Abby who could never not answer a question even when it was reciprocal went on, "Would Gibbs drink a cup of coffee 5 minutes after finishing his last? Would Ziva stab a guy who looked at her funny? Would McGee…"

"Yes, yes, you have a point, but I swear all I want to do is sit back and let the movies and pizza come."

Abby smiled, giving Tony one more hug before bringing out two bean bags, a stack of pizzas and three Caff-Pows (all Abby's). When everything was in place, she came over looking expectantly for Tony to move to the designated movie watching area.

In truth, Tony didn't even know if he could get to the designated movie watching area by himself, and when Abby leant down to lend a hand he was supremely grateful. To keep up appearances Tony complained the whole way to the bean bags. Abby just ignored every complaint and kissed him on the top of the head before explaining, "Tony, tonight I'm taking care of you, but I'll let you pick the first movie."

Tony looked into Abby's concerned face and grinned, "Really?"

"Sure, I wouldn't want you to get bored."

"I could never get bored with you Abby."

Tony picked "The Faculty", being in the mood for an alien invasion at a high school, and soon the two were laid back on the floor in Abby's lab watching Elijah Wood have his legs slammed around a pole on the big screen on the wall.

When Abby offered Tony a piece of pizza with everything on it, it took all his will-power just to look at it. Plastering on a smile and accepting the piece, Tony took a small bite, all the while fighting the rising nausea.

Tony's paleness did not escape Abby's notice and as the movie wound on she became increasingly worried. Tony was hardly even aware what was happening on the screen in front of him constantly having to fight back grimaces of pain. He hurt and Tony was damned if he'd let Abby suffer along with him.

Excusing himself to go to the head, Tony began to extricate himself from the bean bag only to fall back into the mess of cushioning.

XXXXXX

Abby was immediately on her feet, movie running in the background as she crouched down in front of the stricken agent. Tony was covered in cold sweat and when Abby placed a hand on his shoulder she could feel the fine tremors course through his body.

"Tony, what's wrong?….TONY!"

Enough was enough, Tony was obviously in pain and the time for Ducky had arrived no matter how much Tony complained.

What really got Abby worrying though was when he looked up at her with a pained expression and said quietly as if even speaking took too much effort,

"Abby, I think I need to see Ducky now."

Abby reeled, becoming panicked. Tony never wanted to see Ducky, at least not in his doctor-capacity; it must be really bad. Abby quickly connected to Ducky in autopsy, where the doctor was presently up to his elbows in a man's innards.

"Ducky…DUCKY you have to get here right now." Abby was in full hysterics now, the three caffpows probably not helping.

"My dear child, whatever is the problem?" Even though Ducky spoke with a calm voice, he was moving quickly to get partially cleaned up, the panic and urgency in Abby's voice spurring him to move faster.

"It's Tony…. He's hurt and-and I think it's bad."

"Dear me, Jethro told me young Anthony had been tackled. Unfortunately I had already started this autopsy. I was going to see him as soon as I finished." Ducky sighed, looking dejected, "I should have trusted Jethro's instincts and gone right away… too late now. I'll be there in no time at all Abigail."

Abby cut the connection when she was sure Ducky was on his way and immediately called for an ambulance. Even though Ducky was coming from the looks of Tony there was no time to waste.

XXXXXX

The room had begun to spin around him and Tony was finding it harder and harder to take a breath. Trying for shallow small breaths didn't provide nearly enough oxygen, but anything more hurt too much.

Raising his hand to rub the black spots from his eyes, Tony noticed that his hand was now shaking quite extensively… and damn it was cold in here!

The next thing Tony knew between the pain in his chest and the lack of oxygen was Abby's tear stained face, helping him into a more comfortable position.

"Tony… why did… you let me believe you?" She asked between wet sobs.

Tony grimaced both in pain and at the worry in Abby's eyes.

"I'm s-sorry Abs" Tony spoke so quietly Abby hardly heard him. Tony felt his breath catch and he began to cough. Fire speared through his body with each agonizing hack. Tony didn't notice when Ducky arrived, placing a hand on his back and helping him upright or when Gibbs arrived, having had a gut feeling that his senior field agent was in trouble.

Tony only knew the pain that had become his chest. Thankfully blessed darkness arrived and his body went limp, his hand falling away from his mouth.

Abby gasped and began a renewed bout of tears into Gibbs' shoulder at the sight of the bright red blood covering the unconscious man's hand.

TBC

AN: He he he.. don't you just love a good cliffy.