A/N: This is my entry for the NFA Teammate Hurt Challenge. It takes place...guess where...on a farm. I grew up on a farm and I have fond memories of working there. However, I'm aware that many people have not had that wonderful experience and the harrows (when they appear) may not have any significance to anyone's mind. What I suggest is that you do a nice little Google search for old drag harrows (not disc harrows). Otherwise, just sit back an enjoy.
Disclaimer: I do not own NCIS. I'm poor. Enough said.
How You Gonna Keep 'em Down on the Farm?
by Enthusiastic Fish
Chapter 1: This Is the Barn
The morning had started quietly enough. It was a lazy summer day, that brief lull between frantic spring planting and equally frantic cutting. The only happening on this farm was that the crops were growing. Except for the telephone wires and the occasional car on the road, the farm (barn and all) was indistinguishable from its 19th-century counterparts.
Then...the stillness was broken by a truck speeding up the dirt road. It pulled into the yard and three men jumped out. They looked back over their shoulders and saw another car bouncing and clattering its way over the washboard to the isolated location. No time to run to the trees. They'd have to make their stand here...but under cover. The barn was a welcome choice. The three men ran and pulled the barn doors closed after them. Then, by mutual agreement they hid themselves in separate locations within the barn. They wouldn't go down without a fight.
The sedan pulled up a few minutes later, again disturbing the usual quiet calm of the farm. Four people jumped out, drawing their guns and approaching the barn...the only possible location...with extreme caution. As they reached it, the man in the lead gestured for the others to take up different locations. They scattered silently.
"Everyone in position?" Gibbs whispered.
"Ready, Boss," Tony said.
"Ready," Ziva reported.
"McGee?" Gibbs whispered.
There was no response.
Tim's voice came over the radio, breathless. "Sorry, Boss. I had to get around some...stuff. I'm ready."
"On my count. David, DiNozzo, take the side doors. McGee, watch the loft."
Tim looked around at their location. He'd never been on a farm before. Running through the fields didn't seem so special when it was capped by a takedown of a few murderers. He had managed to hide his surprise that there were farms so close to DC, but he just didn't think about it.
"What do you think will be in the barn?" Tony said. "It could be like on Twister..."
"Shut up, DiNozzo!"
Tim swallowed hard. These confrontations still made him a little nervous, although he'd never admit it.
Tim drew his gun and focused on the door in front of him.
Simultaneously, the four doors opened.
"Federal agents! Drop your weapons!" Gibbs yelled. His command was echoed by Tony, Ziva and Tim.
Tim took a moment to look around at the interior of the barn. It wasn't as though he'd never seen one before, but not for years and certainly not in this context. It was quintessentially a barn. There was a hayloft...full of hay. Big surprise. Work benches covered with tools...and bird droppings. A couple of stalls, perhaps once used for horses, now vacant. And beneath the loft, old worn-out farm machinery, all as incomprehensible to Tim as computers were to Gibbs. Then, the bullets started to fly and Tim had no more time to spend taking in their location. His attention was all for finding the three men they'd been chasing.
"One above you, McGee!" Tony shouted and then dove behind the work bench to avoid the bullets being fired at him.
"Got him!" Tim shouted back and clambered up the ladder. The hayloft didn't have as much hay as he had thought, although it certainly covered the floor. The rest of the space was given over to...junk: rusty rolls of barbed wire, buckets of...stuff. There was one man there, looking down at the scene below, effectively pinning Tony and Ziva both with his gunfire.
"Drop your gun! Drop it!" Tim ordered as he reached the top. He took the man by surprise and he turned toward Tim, his hands in the air.
"Okay, okay!" The man began to lower his gun.
"Over here," Tim said. There was enough hay up here that he was sure that the gun would disappear if the guy just dropped it.
"Right." The man looked as though he was going to docilely follow Tim's instructions, but then, at the last possible moment, he suddenly changed from a gentle toss to an overarm throw, right at Tim's face. Tim ducked, his gun still in his hand. He felt it buck as he reflexively pulled the trigger. Before he could do more than that, something else was flying at him. He had time to register the huge roll of barbed wire before it hit him in the chest, knocking the wind out of him...and knocking him back and through the chute in the corner (which he had not noticed before), out of the loft... and down onto the harrows below. It seemed to happen in slow motion, and Tim couldn't even shout because he was having trouble breathing. Thankfully, he hit his head first and blacked out before the rest of him made contact with the old farm equipment. No one would see him unless they knew he was there. Which they didn't.
Tony was still ducked behind the work bench. The bullets from above had stopped, but he couldn't get a clear shot at the guys on the ground.
"Ziva! Little help?"
There was no reply, but suddenly all the bullets stopped. He stood up slowly, checking to make sure that...yep, he's not going anywhere. Ziva had him on the ground. Gibbs had the other one in cuffs. Tony started to look around for Tim and saw someone jumping out of the loft window. "We've got a runner!" He gave chase, noting with interest that the man didn't appear to be armed. How did he get away from McGee, then? Then, he didn't have time to wonder because the runner suddenly tripped and fell on his face. When Tony reached him, he laughed.
"Taken down by a hole in the ground," he said as he came up on the man. Quickly, he cuffed him, relieved that there had been so little danger this time around. He dragged the man to his feet and pulled him, protesting, back to the barn.
"Boss, I don't think we're going to have enough room for all these guys," Tony commented as he reached the front of the barn. Then, he did a quick head count. "Hey...where's McGee?"
"He is not with you?" Ziva asked in surprise, looking around as if she expected him to materialize out of thin air. "This man was from the loft, yes?"
"Yeah. I didn't see him, but then, I was chasing our clumsy friend here," Tony said, giving a shake to the suspect who had become strangely mute.
Gibbs, holding the third suspect, shouted back into the barn. "McGee!"
The lack of response was slightly worrying, and Gibbs shoved his prisoner toward Tony and Ziva.
"Got him, Boss," Tony said and looked at the men. "Don't even think about running. I'm not above shooting to kill."
Gibbs looked around the barn. "McGee!" More worried, he headed to the loft and climbed up the ladder. At the top, he saw no one, but he saw Tim's gun on the ground, nearly lost in the hay, the rusty roll of barbed wire lying in the middle of the loft and the stirred up hay over in the corner. Slowly, he approached the back of the loft and was surprised to find the open chute. He looked down.
"Man, it feels good to get you guys. This ought to be worth an early day, don't you think, Ziva?"
Ziva grinned in response, but before she could answer, they heard a concerned shout from the barn.
"Call an ambulance!"