A one-shot after watching "Tribes". The story of two best friends: one a Israeli Jew, one an Israeli Muslim. The story of how their peoples collided one day and destroyed their lives. The story of Ziva David and Daoud Chabbaz.
DISCLAIMER: I don't own anybody in this story, not even Daoud, not technically, since he was mentioned namelessly in Tribes.
11-year-old Ziva David shrieked with laughter as she dodged the water being thrown at her by the young Muslim boy across the street. "Daoud!" she exclaimed. "Daoud, I'm on my way to synagogue! Don't get me wet!"
12-year-old Daoud Chabbaz grinned and readjusted his head covering. "And I'm returning from mosque, Ziva. What better time to torment a little Jewess?"
Ziva's face reflected immediate, affectionate outrage. "You – you – you –" She yelped when Daoud managed to douse her with another shot of water. "That's it! You aren't invited to my Bat Mitzvah tomorrow any more!"
"Ziva!" her mother exclaimed sternly, catching her older daughter's shoulder to steer her firmly away. "On Shabbat, no less!…"
"But Mama!" Ziva exclaimed.
"Do you ever wonder what we'll be when we're grown?" Daoud asked as he and Ziva perched on the rooftop of his family's home. "I think I'd like to be in Hamas like Father. Be a soldier for our people."
"Your people shoot at my people," Ziva said quietly. "Your job would be to kill me."
"Never," Daoud said stoutly. "I would never kill you, Ziva."
"I think I'd be in Mossad. Like Father." Ziva commented. "But that would have to be after my two years in the army."
"Mossad kills people in Hamas," Daoud said quietly. "Your job would be to kill me."
"I would never kill you, Daoud," Ziva said solemnly. "We're best friends, you and I. Best friends don't ever hurt one another."
"Not for real, any way," Daoud said with a grin as he shoved Ziva to the gravely rooftop playfully. "Play-fighting doesn't count."
Ziva kicked back at him, laughing as they got into a tussle. "Daoud! Daoud, stop it, this is improper!"
"Since when do you care about improper, Ziva David?" Daoud asked breathlessly.
"Hamas came to school today," Daoud said excitedly as he and Ziva met up in the marketplace after school had ended. "They were looking for recruits. They said I had the potential to become a great officer like Father. Like Youssef."
"You're only 12, Daoud. You're too young," Ziva said with a frown. "Even Mossad doesn't start recruiting until you're 16."
"Hamas said that even the small can be useful. I told them yes," Daoud replied with sparkling eyes. "Ziva, this is a chance of a life!" His smile faded when he saw the disappointment in her eyes. "I mean it, Ziva, I'd never hurt you."
"You'd be in Hamas, Daoud. Your entire job would be to hurt me."
"Never you. Never you or Ari or Tali. Only the ones who hurt me first." Smiling at her hopefully, he hugged her. "I could never hurt you."
"Daoud!" Ziva called as she ran up from where the Jewish school was held. "Daoud, over here!"
Daoud looked over from where his father and brother were talking to him. He shook his head. "Not today, Ziva!" he called back.
Ziva slowed down, disappointment crossing her face. Daoud never had time to be with her any more, not since he had been recruited by Hamas.
It was a sunny summer afternoon some two months later, after school had ended for the summer, the next time Ziva got to spend time with Daoud. They were in Haifa, on the beach.
"I've missed you, Daoud!" Ziva said happily, watching his thin, scared face. "Are you okay, Daoud?"
"Yeah. Yeah, I'm fine," Daoud replied distractedly. "Come on, let's go down to the markets," he suggested suddenly, seizing her hand to drag her along.
"You don't look so well, Daoud," Ziva said worriedly, tracing her fingers over the dark circles under his eyes. "Are you sure you're not ill?"
"You know I'd never hurt you purposely, Ziva, right?" Daoud asked, fear edging into his voice.
"Of course not," Ziva said. "We're best friends. Best friends don't hurt each other."
Daoud's eyes met hers for a moment, and in that moment, Ziva felt her childhood end. Then he had leaned in, tentatively kissed her and whispered, "Run, Ziva. Run as fast as you can. I don't want to kill you." He lifted the hem of his shirt slightly to reveal the bomb strapped to his chest.
"Daoud…" Ziva gasped, just as the timer began to blink rapidly and beep.
"Run!" Daoud shouted, pushing her away down a side alley.
Ziva didn't stop running until she heard a faint whistling.
"Ziva, Ziva, what are you doing here?" came the voice of her 20-year-old half-brother as he pulled her into a doorway. "Ziva, stop!" he exclaimed when she tried to break free.
"Let me go, Ari, he's going to die!" Ziva cried out, struggling against his arms. She heard the distant explosion and started to scream and sob. "No! NO! Daoud! Let me go, Ari, let me go!"
"He is dead, Ziva!" Ari said sharply, slapping her face. "He is dead because Hamas told him that it would be glorious to die for Islam! He was going to kill you!"
"No!" Ziva sobbed. "No, he wasn't! He…"
"He died for jihad, Ziva!" Ari snapped. "He died and made sure he took a lot of Jews with him!"
"Stop it!" Ziva screamed, striking him on the shoulder as he hauled her down the alleyway. "Stop it, Ari, let me go! Daoud!"
"Her little Hamas bomber just blew up the Haifa marketplace when the tactics team took him down," Ari said to one of the Mossad officers gathered just outside of the alley. "Contact Deputy Director David at his summer residence, have him pick up his daughter."
"Daoud!" Ziva cried again, fighting against the grip of her father's officers as they got her into their van.
Ziva snuck out of the house that night, running down to the smoking remains of the Haifa marketplace.
Where was the glory in this? Where was the glory in sending 12-year-old boys to blow themselves up, where was the glory in tearing their bodies apart with missiles?
When she was in Mossad, she would put an end to this, once and for all. For Daoud.