Disclaimer: I do not own NCIS, but I know my head injuries. Hope I didn't brain my damage.

Spoilers: Recoil.

Summary: Ziva apparently went to the hospital, but, given that the team was busy with the dead body party…what happened while she was there? Abby was surprisingly unconcerned (or not so surprisingly…but let's not talk about that now) throughout the ep, but maybe she had a reason. Some Abby/Ziva friendship, and Ziva head injury yammering.

Abby flashed her NCIS ID at the hospital security guard who ran up when she parked her car. "Outta my way, bub. Federal business."

"I'm sorry, ma'am, but these spots are reserved for doctors."

She didn't pause, walking toward the white cement building. "Was I not clear about the whole federal law enforcement thing? Bill the Navy if you're gonna give me a ticket, but let me tell you," she paused, pursed her lips and twirled to face her pursuer, "that you will have to answer to Leroy Jethro Gibbs himself. Do you really want that?"


"Yeah, I didn't think you would." She turned resolutely and headed into the hospital.

From somewhere behind her, the guard shouted, "So I'll just put a temporary pass on your car then?"

Abby smiled to herself as she continued into the building. Ten minutes and three sets of directions later, she walked into the ER waiting room. Ziva was sitting by herself in a corner, arms crossed, pouting and staring out the window on her left.

"Ziva! Oh my God, are you okay? McGee called me and told me you were here and…" she stopped as she skidded to a halt in front of Ziva and saw her haunted eyes. And the wound on her temple. Abby leaned down and wrapped her in a hug. "Anyway, I'm gonna hang out with you and give you a ride home once you're finished here."

Abby began to worry that things we much worse than McGee had implied when Ziva didn't try to push her way, even after extended hugging time. She eventually let go and sank into the seat beside Ziva. "So…how does your head feel?"

Ziva looked at her blankly for a few seconds before saying, "Abby."

"Yes." She spread her hand and placed her palm over her heart. "Me Abby. Friend."

"Are you all right, Abby?"

"Of course I am! No one punched me in the head!"



"I was grazed by a bullet."

Abby decided to keep hugging while the hugging was good and seized Ziva in another embrace. "Oh my God! You got shot in the head and they're just letting you wait out here? I am gonna go tell those…"

"Abby!" Ziva finally did what Abby had been expecting and shoved her away. "I am fine and I will wait my turn. I am sure there are other people who need…"

"Oh, yeah," Abby scoffed, interrupting. "Everyone with the sniffles in here takes precedence over the federal agent who was shot in the head!"

"Ducky was not concerned." Ziva turned her attention out the window again as an ambulance pulled into the driveway. "He and Jimmy gave me a ride here as a formality before they went to the second scene. The same reason you are here," she added, suddenly looking away and rubbing her eyes.

"I didn't come because someone told me to. I volunteered."

"I'm sorry. I…"

"Miss David?" a woman in cranberry red scrubs called from the check-in desk.

Abby waited for Ziva to correct the pronunciation, but she didn't. "Hopefully this will not take long. You do not have to wait, Abby."

"I don't mind. I can just hang out here and wait for the freak chainsaw accident victims to arrive!"

Ziva didn't reply, but followed the cranberry woman through a set of doors. Abby turned to an elderly man sitting in the row of chairs across from her. "So. What are you in for?"

"You'll have to take off your necklace."

Ziva blinked and considered the nurse. "No."

"You can have it back as soon as we're done. Here, would you like me to…"

"No!" Ziva pulled away from the arms that had moved to encircle her neck. Her own fingers quickly found the clasp on the necklace she couldn't remember putting on. Had she…no, she hadn't been wearing it when she'd been Gina. Tony had picked the name, citing some song about Tommy and Gina…Tommy? Did that mean something? No, it was probably just some stupid thing she didn't want to hear about and wouldn't care about when…

"Miss David?"

"Hm? Oh." She carefully removed her necklace and reclasped it before handing it to the nurse.

"Thank you. I'll need the watch and wedding band, too."

"It is not mine."

"Well, it's still a very nice watch."

"I meant…" Ziva suddenly felt very tired. She handed over her earrings, ring and watch without further complaint and changed into the gown the nurse handed her. "Is this necessary?"

"Don't worry, you can have your, um…" The nurse held up the navy blue jumpsuit Gibbs had given her for Christmas…no, at the crime scene. She barely celebrated Chanukah, much less Christmas. She laid down on the table the nurse indicated, after apparently making further comments about her jumpsuit.

"My clothes had blood on them. Not my blood."

"Of course they did. Now lie still. This shouldn't take more than twenty minutes if you don't move around. Just press this button if you start to feel claustrophobic."

"Fine." Ziva closed her eyes. What was for lunch? Was it her turn to choose? She wasn't all that hungry, but maybe something light. McGee would be okay with that, but Tony…Tony could go and listen to songs he'd probably made up about people named Tommy and Gina.

She wasn't sure how much time had passed when she became aware of herself again, wearing her blue jumpsuit and Star of David and sitting on the edge of a gurney. A woman in a white lab coat was peering at a series of images on a light box. "Yes. Hmm. Some swelling. All right."

She didn't bother to ask any questions. Questions would mean explanations and explanations would mean time. More time. And she needed to get back to work or Gibbs would kill her. Funny, he'd been the one to help her the last time she'd been this late for work. But she wasn't late. She was… "Miss David?"


"Are you experiencing any pain?"

"Some," she half-truthed. It sounded better than, It feels like someone ran over my skull with a tank. "Nothing I cannot handle. May I go?"

"I'd actually like to get you admitted for observation. While I can't see any bleeding, you do have some swelling, and given that the blow occurred close to the pterion, that could lead to a rupture in the anterior branch of the middle menigeal…"

Ziva tuned out the rest of the medical mumbo jungle – was that the phrase? – and tried to look at the scans the doctor was indicating. My brain is ugly. She suddenly decided she'd had enough. "I would really like to get back to work now."

"You can't go to work! You need to rest for a few days, at the very least."

She stood, taking a moment to get used to the new height of her head. "I will sign whatever you need me to."

"Miss David, I strongly suggest you remain here."

"Can you force me to do so?"

"No, but…"

"Then I will leave." She swept back the curtain surrounding the gurney and headed for the doors with the gleaming red exit sign that was a little too bright.

The doctor followed her. "At least let me give you a prescription for the pain."

"Can I take aspirin?"

"Yes, but…"

"I will take aspirin. Thank you, doctor." She paused when she got to the doors. "One last…will you tell anyone you opinions about my injury?"

"Doctor/patient confidentiality means that I…"

"Thank you."

Abby clapped her hands together as she exited the hospital for the second time and saw her car. "I knew I'd find it! I can't believe you said no to the wheelchair, though! I think it'd be fun to cruise around on wheels all day…although not in a wheelchair, because that would mean you weren't in it for fun or convenience, but…"

"Abby, can we just…." Ziva waved her hand at the car.

"Oh, right." She unlocked the passenger side door and was surprised when Ziva accepted her assistance getting in. "And you're sure you're okay?"

"Yes, Abby. Are you going to give me a ride back to NCIS or not?"

"I am all over it." She closed the door, feeling better about the situation as she walked around the back bumper of the car and waved to the security guard. If the ER doctors said Ziva was okay to go back to work, there was no reason to doubt it. She probably just needed a cup of coffee – which would be an excellent excuse to pick up a Caf-Pow too. Abby dropped into the driver's seat and smiled. "I think this wheel idea may have some real possibilities…"