Disclaimer: I don't own any characters from the TV show, they all belong to Belisarious Productions and CBS. The original characters that appear in this story are all mine! I've created them.
A/N: Okay, so this is my first real look at Stan Burley as a main character. He is a favourite small character of mine so I thought it would be good to do this story. This story is set as a pre-series look at Gibbs' original team. I know Stan and Gibbs worked together for five years, but I thought there would be a little bit of an interesting twist if Stan were only new. John Witford of the CIA appeared originally in NCIS: Enemy Within. I never explained who he was or how Gibbs' knew him so here is at least one way of clearing that up. Enjoy, and thanks again to EmyPink for betaing this for me. I'm really appreciative of all your hard work. Especially when your doing Year12 this year! Thanks, Em!
The elevator bell dinged as it stopped on the fourth floor. The doors opened. "I'm telling you, John," a short, Polynesian looking woman said as she and John Witford stepped out of the elevator, "Gibbs is testing us to see what our reactions are to the news."
John smiled at Kayla Temuara. "I don't think so, Kay!" John pointed at the man standing in front of Gibbs' desk looking nervous as hell. "I think he was telling the truth."
For John, who had been working with Leroy Jethro Gibbs for two years now, this was an interesting move for the boss. John was forty-five and enjoyed being the only senior agent on the team. Kayla had only been with the team a year and half, and still flinched every time Gibbs looked at her. As John and Kayla walked into the bullpen, the younger looking man turned around.
John nodded to the newcomer. "Morning!" He threw his bag behind his desk, the one directly across from Gibbs. He pulled the SIG off his belt and dumped it into the draw.
"Morning!" The young man said nervously. "You're not Gibbs, are you?"
"No, he's not!" Kayla grinned at John as she sat down at her desk, the one next to Gibbs' desk. She placed her SIG into the draw. "Why? Are you scared of Johnny over there?" She grinned at the newcomer.
"Why shouldn't he be, Temuara?" Gibbs walked into the bullpen, carrying his customary cup of coffee. Gibbs looked over at John. "Morning, John!"
"Boss," John nodded as he looked up, trying not to laugh at Kayla. He turned to Gibbs. "How did your date go?"
"I don't want to talk about it, John." Gibbs shifted in his seat for a second. Gibbs looked up at the young man as he flipped through his papers. "So you're the one Director Morrow dropped in my lap."
"Yes, sir," the man nodded uncomfortably.
"Don't call me sir," Gibbs growled. John shook his head, the kid didn't know Gibbs' pet hates yet. Gibbs continued, "I work for a living." He took a sip at his coffee.
"That's your desk," John nodded at the one diagonally opposite Gibbs desk. "I'm John by the way.
"Stan." Burley held out his hand to John who shook it with a vicelike grip.
"That's Kayla," John said as he let go of Stan's hand. Kayla nodded to him as she glanced away from her computer for a few seconds.
"She'll be busy looking at her emails. It's her thing, particularly when a Navy pilot by the name of Tay Johnson is concerned," John added loudly as he teased her. Kayla gave him an exaggerated smile.
John sat down at his desk. "So what did you do before joining NCIS?"
Stand rubbed his neck, a classic embarrassment sign. "Um…well, I was a senator's aide." Kayla and John looked at each other before both stifling laughs. Stan shrugged. "I figured anything could be better than that!"
"Well, you're in for an interesting time, Probie" Kayla said, smiling across at him, glad that she was no longer the Probie of the team.
Gibbs' phone rang. "Yeah, Gibbs!" He paused as he listened at the other end. "Right, we're on our way." He rose from his desk. "Gear up. We've got a siege underway at Oceania Naval Air Station."
The van pulled up and outside the NCO club and John climbed out from behind the wheel. Stan climbed out after him, helping Kayla. Gibbs walked quickly over from the blue Chrysler that he had been driving. He wore a flak jacket and throat microphone.
"Come and get the doors open!" Gibbs growled at John. Gibbs turned to watch the Provost Marshall of the base arrive. Then, Gibbs turned and pulled a shotgun from the back of the van. He moved to the side, out of the way, as he loaded the shotgun, pumping a shell into the chamber and flicking the safety on. John had his flak jacket on and was adjusting his throat mike while Kayla was standing next to Gibbs all dressed and ready to go. Stan was having a little difficulty with the flak jacket.
"Gibbs, NCIS." Gibbs walked over to the Naval Commander. "Skipper, what have we got?"
"Patterson." He shook Gibbs' hand, and then got down to business. "Well, as far as we can tell, a drunken Leading Seaman, Collins, has taken a Petty Officer hostage," Commander Patterson shrugged. "But that's all my men could tell me. They haven't been able to get much closer then the door."
"Entry and exits?" Gibbs asked. Patterson nodded as he produced a floor plan of the building.
"Here is the main entrance." Patterson pointed at the map. "There is a side entrance here and a service entrance here." He pointed at the floor plan. "You might want to put your greenest man at the side entrance. It's not used often and to get there is like a walking through a maze, as you can see."
Gibbs nodded. "Okay." He looked at John and Kayla who were standing off to the side. "John, take the service entrance. Kayla, you're with me on the front entrance." Gibbs nodded to Stan who was now finished putting on the flak jacket. "He can have the side entrance!"
Kayla whispered to John, "He's got a name. Honestly, Gibbs could be a little more team oriented." John cocked an eyebrow at Kayla, giving her the look of 'shut up now or we're both in trouble.'
"Move," Gibbs growled at the three of them. The trio followed him, all weapons now drawn. They split into three directions. Gibbs and Kayla jogged over to the front entrance. Gibbs had a glimpse inside for a brief moment. "Door's locked," Gibbs said to Kayla. "I'll blast it when we move."
"Status?" He whispered into the throat microphone.
"Burley in position!" Stan replied quickly into Gibbs earwig receiver.
"I'm in position, Boss!" John replied seconds later into Gibbs' ear.
Gibbs looked over at Kayla. "You ready?"
"As I'll ever be Gibbs," Kayla said as she nodded.
Gibbs spoke over the throat microphone, "On three. John you move in. Kayla and I will enter the building. Steve, I want you to hold position, and make sure they don't try and escape."
Kayla rolled her eyes. Gibbs wasn't going to get Stan's name right for a long time now. Gibbs spoke again, "One, two, three, now!" Gibbs swivelled on his feet. The shotgun discharged, shattering the glass as Kayla and Gibbs rushed inside.
From his position on the wall next to the of the side entrance, Stan Burley watched and waited as he heard static gunfire from within the building. The audible comments from the rest of the team could be heard over his earwig receiver. He looked at his SIG and breathed. He was hoping that he wouldn't have to do anything today.
Gibbs' voice echoed over his earwig receiver. "Anyone got eyes on the suspect?"
"Negative," John replied over the earwig. "I've got nothing!"
"Nothing, Gibbs!" Kayla replied quickly as well, before she asked Stan, "Anything out there, Probie?"
Stan eyed the glass door and the small hallway beyond it. "Nothing!" he replied into his throat microphone. He was about to add when a figure ran with a limp up the corridor. "Wait, I have a suspect. He's moving to side entrance doors!"
"Steve," Gibbs said, calling him the wrong name again, "don't try to stop him. We'll be there in two minutes."
"That's a negative, Gibbs!" Stan replied as the figure was closing on the door. The Desert Eagle semi-auto pistol in the suspect's hand was pointing towards the entrance and Stan.
"He'll be here in seconds," Stan whispered, training hadn't really prepared him and he was feeling it now. "Let me take the shot!"
"We won't get there in time, Jethro," John said over the earwig.
Gibbs sighed over the intercom connection. "Okay, take the shot, but don't be stupid!"
"Right, boss," Stan said. He let out his breath long and slow. He pressed himself up against the wall and waited. The suspect shoved the door open and staggered outside. His eyes were adjusting to the light so Stan reacted, his SIG pointed at the suspect's head. "Freeze, NCIS! Drop the weapon or you're a dead man, scumbag."
The suspect whipped around, his drunken state making him feel invincible, the Desert Eagle pointed at Stan's chest. Both men fired at the same instant. A bullet pounded into Stan's flak jacket, causing him to be fly back into the wall from the impact. The suspect dropped to the ground, dead. The bullet had smashed through his forehead, killing him instantly. Stan slid to the ground. The pain in his chest seemed to numb. The split second decision had felt like it had lasted decade. The suspect had fired at him and he had responded the only way he could.
John appeared around the corner at a run, having heard the shots fired. He saw Stan sitting motionlessly against the wall and the suspect lying in a pool of blood. As he closed, Stan looked at him with glazed eyes.
"I had no choice," Stan gasped as the impact of the bullet in his flak jacket caused him pain and loss of breath.
John nodded, and spoke over the throat mike. "Boss, suspect is down. I repeat suspect is down. Team member is in shock. Please have Ducky stand by."
Gibbs replied, "He's on his way!"
John walked into the bar. He had received a call from Mick the bartender about an NCIS Agent who was drunk and who claimed to know John. At the end of the bar with head drooped in an absolute stupor was Stan Burley. John walked over to him. "How are you doing, Probie?"
"How do you think, John?!" Stan snapped drunkenly. "I killed someone!"
"Yes, you did," John nodded. He himself had been through this many times, the Marine Corp and then NCIS. He placed a hand on Stan's shoulder. "Welcome to the one shot, one kill club."
Stan angrily shrugged his hand off like a little kid not happy with the result of a sporting match. John sighed and sat down. He nodded to Mick for his usual drink.
"Listen to me, kid. You either accept it and become a better man like Gibbs …" He let the words settle. Gibbs had been hard on Stan earlier, but it had done the trick. Now it was John's turn. It had worked with Kayla. It would work with Stan.
"Or you can sit here, drink yourself to death and stay depressed for the rest of your life. Just remember we've all done it. I promise you things will feel awkward for a couple of weeks, but you need to accept it and move on." Stan gave him an understanding if not drunk nod.
John continued, "You'll become a better agent if you accept this rather then rejecting it. Who knows, you might be better then Gibbs and I put together." John picked up his glass of whiskey and saluted Stan. "Welcome to the club!"
Stan picked up the beer he was drinking. "To becoming a better agent!"
A/N: Okay, so this is an interesting look at how Stan becomes a permanent member of Gibbs' team. Well, until Tony arrives anyway.