AN: I had to write a fanfic emerging from "Recoil" because it was my favourite NCIS episode yet! The quotes taken from the episode may not be exact… but they're very similar to the ones spoken in the actual show!! Enjoy! And please review!!
She'd made her decision the second she walked in the door. She'd suffered enough, and the thought of not acting now only made the emotional wounds sting more.
She picked up the phone, dialled the all too familiar number. One ring. Two rings. Three rings.
Hang up, you should hang up.. Just hang up.
"Hello?" his voice murmured drowsily… after six rings.
She inhaled quickly, slightly scared of what she was about to say. She said it anyways,
"I want you to come over right now."
They were the only words that he needed.
She regretted doing it the second she had. She was just still so shaken up, he should have known to leave her alone. When he reached out to touch her hair, she saw it as a threatening gesture, not a friendly one. She slammed his hand down on the table, just in time to see his concerned smile turn into a frown.
"I just wanted to tousle your hair, it usually makes you smile."
Despite the anger, confusion, and anxiety that still plagued her.. She felt her heart skip a beat.
Why does he do this to me?
She apologized quickly and turned away.
He watched as she talked to him in a shady corner of the bar. They looked like two lovers, deep in meaningful conversation. He resisted the urge to go over there and intervene, make her look at him again, focus on him, instead of looking so fondly at the man that she was questioning.
Focus on your work Dinozzo, focus on your work..
He watched as Locke reached out and gently grazed the bruise on Ziva's head with his fingers, and saw her smile serenely.
He doesn't get his hand slammed down on the table. I see how it is David.
He clenched the counter, a stony glare fixed on Locke. A big part of himself was telling him to look away… but he couldn't.
She grinned and chuckled when he said it, mentioned how his ex was constantly quoting movies. She leaned in closer as he continued to describe her.. How caring she was, how much fun.
"She sounds great," she told him about is ex girlfriend- but in her mind, it was Tony, and this man that she was interested in was listing off the assets that she had smiled over, laughed over…and cried over in the dark of so many restless nights.
He waited outside the bar in his car. He shouldn't have followed her, but he was worried. Even more so because she had so coldly refused his offer to go to the bar with her.. And then decided to go alone anyways. At first, when he saw where she parked her car, he assumed that she just wanted to be alone with her thoughts… but now, noting that she'd been in there for over an hour, he thought otherwise.
When he saw them exit the building together and head back to her car, he almost jumped out and yelled to her, but he didn't. Instead, he stayed glued to his seat, inwardly cursing his inaction.
Preppy jerk… It should be me.
The thought was impulsive, and he shook it off as soon as it came to him. He watched Ziva pull away in her car, Locke sitting beside her, smiling cockily…. It felt like he was rubbing an unspoken conquest in Tony's face. The symbolic nature of her driving away from him with Locke perched happily beside her struck him soundlessly. He grimaced.
She said it confidently…not knowing whether it was an accusation, an observation or a question. She said it, and through her statement, broke what she had always assumed to be an unspoken rule between them: never blatantly mention, discuss or refer to it ("it" being that unbearable attraction which she believed to exist between them).
"You are jealous."
"Concerned," he replied quickly.
They continued their conversation, as if she'd never said it.
He threw himself headlong into the case…. finding all of the necessary proof to identify Locke as Hoffman's accomplice. He told himself that he was so determined only because he wanted to identify the other killer, and because so many signs seemed to already point to Locke. He repeated this like a mantra in his head.
You're only doing your job Tony, you're only doing you're job.
However, when he saw Ziva glaring pointedly at him, when she accused him of not having enough evidence, instead of being ruffled, he couldn't help but smile with satisfaction. He knew deep down that he wanted to see all of the evidence point to Locke, wanted it with a fierce and unmatchable passion… because this undeserving stranger had been given the privilege to touch Ziva, and kiss her, and hear her scream his name in a way that Tony had only ever imagined.
She watched from behind the glass pane of the bar door as he called his ex girlfriend.
You did the right thing Ziva.
She felt a pang of heartache, and jealousy, as she watched yet another potential relationship disintegrate before her very eyes. She was sick of it, sick of never getting what she wanted, of getting screwed over again and again in love. She was sick of the emotional wounds that were constantly inflicted on her… wounds which never seemed to heal, which caused her to exist in constant denial of romantic feelings, because they caused too much pain, because they made her weak.
Locke was talking to his ex now, talking to this woman who would do anything for anyone, who quoted movies incessantly. He was repairing things, making her realize that what they shared was special and that they had to mutually acknowledge that.
She realized with an overwhelming clarity what she had to do… what this situation begged for, unlike any situation had begged for it before.
And suddenly, she was just a girl, just a lost, lonely girl… no longer a Mossad fighter, no longer an NCIS agent, no longer a co-worker, a partner, a confused friend.
She drove home quickly, battling her rational self the whole ride.
He arrived at her door ten minutes after she called him, and knocked on it loudly… he was worried. Ziva never called him this late at night, unless something was really wrong.
She opened the door slowly, and looked at him with a slight smile.
"You're alright?" he asked, stepping into her apartment.
"I am fine Tony," she replied softly, cocking her head slightly to the side as she watched him look around suspiciously. He turned to her after noting for himself that nothing was awry in her apartment.
"Then, if you don't mind me asking Zee-vah, what am I doing here? Shouldn't you be out on a date with your new boyfriend right about now?"
It came out much more bitterly then he had intended it to… her smile expanded.
"That is exactly what you are doing here," she stated with a quiet irony. Her eyes were fixed on his, reading them silently.
His heart was racing. "I'm not sure that I quite understand what you mean…" he replied slowly.
"Maybe I should explain myself then, yes?"
"That might help… why did you call me over here Ziva? " He asked her more urgently, hoping but not daring to assume that he already knew the answer.
She stepped toward him, her eyes still locked on his. She moved until she was standing just two inches away from him. She tenderly placed her hand on his cheek, and stood silently, looking at him. She was so close that she had to look up in order to register the complete shock in his eyes. With a sly grin on her face, she reached out and playfully ran the same hand over his hair.
"I just wanted to tousle your hair. It usually makes you smile," she said breathily, surprised by her own boldness.
He grinned, and, acting completely on the impulse of the moment, pulled her face towards his and kissed her with the fierce passion of a man that finally understands.
She kissed him back, pouring three years worth of heartache into one intimate gesture.
That night, when he reached for his glasses across her naked body, she turned around to him and smiled, and watched as he smiled back. The wounds would heal.