Title: Fighting Their Fights
Characters: Ziva David, Abby Sciuto, Jenny Sheppard
Prompt: #94 Independence
Word Count: 1,333
Summary: Ziva struggles to become more of a part of the team, but will she lose Jenny because of it? Sequel to Living Their Lives.
Author's Note: Many thanks to abbyforever for beta'ing this for me. She's the best.
Disclaimer: These characters belong to DPB, CBS, Paramount, et al. No copyright infringement is intended.
Jenny sat back in her chair, clenching her hands around the armrests before abruptly letting go and then folding her arms over her chest. She took her time with her movements before crossing her legs and only then, finally looking up at Ziva.
"No," Jenny asked with a raised eyebrow. "Why not?"
"Because you brought me here to be a part of Gibbs' team and to truly be a part of Gibbs' team, I must gain his trust. To gain his trust, I cannot share information about his on-going cases with you."
"Ziva," She sounded irritated. "Gibbs does not always consider the consequences of his actions. He focuses on the results. I need to make sure that he does not get himself, his agents, or this agency in too deep with the consequences of his actions."
"Then you need to find another way to get the information that you need. I will not provide you with anymore information about Gibbs' actions." Ziva leaned across Jenny's desk, palms flat against the top of it.
A look of anger and hurt flashed across Jenny's face. "You can go." Her voice was stiff and formal.
Ziva turned on her heel and stalked towards the door. It was a solid, heavy door, but she nonetheless managed to slam it behind her on the way out. She was almost jogging down the stairs from Jenny's office. She held up a hand as Tony started to ask her a question and brushed past him, heading towards the elevator.
She took the elevator down to Abby's lab. Loud music was blaring as she stepped off of the elevator. She took a deep breath and walked towards Abby where she was running some tests.
Abby gave her a quick smile over her shoulder as she heard her come in. "Whatcha got for me?" She asked cheerfully.
"Nothing," Ziva said with a curt shake of her head. She focused on the search that Abby was running. "Are those prints for Gibbs?"
"Yep," Abby said with a triumphant grin. "Thought they were all destroyed, but I managed to pull enough of a partial off of the gun that we should be able to find a match, if there's a match to be found."
Ziva nodded slowly. "I do not think that this is the first time our suspect has committed a violent crime. You will find a match."
"Mmm-hmm," Abby bobbed her head in agreement. She paused and looked over at Ziva.
"Something bothering you? You seem all -" She gestured vaguely with her hands. "-Not you-ish."
Ziva hesitated for one moment. "I'm fine."
"You know," Abby said conversationally as she walked around to pull a set of test results off of the printer tray, "I'm going to assume that you want to talk to me, because I gotta think that Mossad would have trained you to be a better liar than that."
Ziva sucked in a breath; it hissed through her teeth as she drew herself up in anger.
"I do not know what you're talking about."
"You," Abby said simply, as she opened an evidence bag, "Are not fine."
"No," Ziva was surprised to find herself admitting the truth. "No, but there is nothing I can do to change it. I made my decision and I will stick by it."
"Oh," Abby said with sympathy, "One of those kinds of decisions."
Ziva nodded curtly.
"Wanna give me a hand?"
Ziva glanced down at her hands and then Abby's. "Your hands seem to be fine."
Abby rolled her eyes. "It means, would you mind helping me."
"Oh," Ziva said slowly. "Okay."
Abby pointed to a large box sitting on the floor in front of one of the tables. "Can you help me set this up there? It weighs like a ton. I was going to get McGee to help me, but Gibbs hasn't let him down here all day and I really need to have this cracked open before Gibbs comes down here for a report, and..."
"Yes." Ziva said quickly, cutting off her rambling comments. She glanced towards the trash can and smiled when she saw two empty Caf-Pow's sitting in it.
She stepped around to the other side of the box, and together they lifted. It was heavier than it looked, Ziva had to admit, but they managed to get it up on the table.
"Ah," Abby groaned, as she let it go, putting one hand on her back.
"Are you all right?" Ziva asked quickly, moving to Abby's side. She reached out without thinking to brace Abby with a hand against her back.
"Yeah..." Abby didn't sound convinced. "I think I pulled something in my back though." She grimaced.
Ziva frowned. "You should always lift with your legs."
Abby rolled her eyes. "Thanks for telling me that now."
"Abby," A sharp voice cut into the conversation as the Director breezed around the corner and into the lab, "I need the report on Agent Gibbs' latest case." Her steps faltered for a moment as she saw Ziva with Abby.
"Agent David," Her tone was icy. "I didn't realize you were assisting Ms. Sciuto today."
"Actually she was just helping me lift this box," Abby stepped in. "It was pretty heavy and I needed some help getting it up on the table so that I could examine it properly."
"I see." Jenny's gaze flicked from Ziva to Abby. "Do you have that report ready yet, Abby?"
Abby glanced towards the printer. "Yeah," She said triumphantly, "It just came through." She handed the report to Ziva. "Gibbs wanted it right away."
Only Abby could see Ziva's barely perceptible flinch as she took the report from Abby. "I'll make sure Gibbs gets it immediately."
She headed for the elevator without meeting Jenny's eyes. The click of heels on tiled floor told her that Jenny was following her. They rode up in icy silence.
Ziva was conscious of her presence a half step behind her as she made her way back to Gibbs' desk. "I've got Abby's report," She said, dropping it on Gibbs' desk as she swept passed to her own. She opened the desk drawer, pulled out her pistol and clipped it to her belt. "She got a positive match placing our suspect at the scene."
She saw Gibbs calmly staring up at Jenny from behind his desk.
"Something I can do for you today, Director?"
"I wanted to know what the status of your case was, Jethro."
Ziva saw him glance in her directions. She thought she saw a hint of a smile in her direction before he looked back to Jenny.
"About to be closed - just as soon as DiNozzo and David bring him in."
Tony grinned. "On it, Boss."
Ziva was a step ahead of him as they left.
The last person that Ziva expected to see at her door when she opened it that night was Jenny. She stepped back and let her in without a word, but once it was shut behind her and the chain was back on the door, she refused to move further into the apartment.
Ziva leaned silently against the door and stared at Jenny. She would have to be the one to make the first move.
"I'm sorry." Jenny said softly. "I shouldn't have asked you to do that. It wasn't fair to make you choose."
"I owe Gibbs, Jenny. I owe him a debt I can never repay," Ziva said, her voice strained.
"I understand that," Jenny said in a low voice. "This job, Ziva. I hate feeling like I'm not in control and with Jethro..." Her voice trailed off. "I didn't think," She repeated. She looked up at Ziva. She couldn't say the words, but her eyes spoke for her.
Ziva held a hand out to her. "You could make it up to me."
Jenny took her hand, a predatory glint suddenly in her eyes. "I could?"
"Mmm," Ziva said, just before Jenny's lips crushed hers. "You could."