Disclaimer: Disclaimer available by written request only. Send a self-addressed stamped envelope to P. Sherman, 42 Wallaby Way, Sydney.
Spoilers: Minor for Nine Lives. And when I say minor, I mean, like, infant.
Summary: Pre-ep for Nine Lives. People are so used to hearing Ziva misspeak that they miss it when she's giving secret messages. Crack, brought to you by Guinness. Brilliant!
Fornell nervously stepped into the locker room at the gym he'd joined a little over a month ago when he'd become too embarrassed to risk being seen at the FBI's gym. He rapidly changed out of his sweatpants and t-shirt underneath the safety of his thin terrycloth robe. The worst part of his workout was about to begin. He performed a quick check of the showers to ensure that he was alone. Satisfied, he fetched his shampoo, soap and washcloth from his locker and, pulling his robe tightly against him, he did another sweep of the shower room. He made his way to the furthest stall. Even if someone came in, they wouldn't see him before he was able to take appropriate precautions.
The water heated up quickly when he turned it on, but he took his time adjusting the temperature. This was the moment that terrified him most – the moment before he took off his robe. He knew that the longer he waited, the more risk that someone would walk in, yet he hated seeing what he had become. He took a last furtive look around before slipping his robe off his shoulders and stepping under the warm stream with his eyes shut tightly.
He was just rinsing the shampoo from his hair, listening with rapt attention for anything out of the ordinary, when the worst-case scenario became a reality. A voice spoke from what could only be the stall immediately beside him, "Agent Fornell! I did not know you use this gym."
His eyes shot open in panic confirming that it was indeed the last person he would have expected. "I…I…you…what?"
"It is not my normal gym, but a friend I sometimes train with asked if I would be interested in teaching occasional classes on the basics of Krav Maga, and since I rarely say no to the opportunity to hit people…"
Fornell finally found his voice, saying the only thing that made sense, "Officer David, this is the men's locker room!"
"So?" She ducked her head under the showerhead and her nakedness reminded him that he had to cover his own. His robe caught on something and tore when he tried to yank it off the hook. His fright caused him to tear it more in his desperate attempt to fix it. He was trying to find an effective way to use the shreds to cover himself when she leaned her arms against the divider between the stalls. "I do not mean to pry, but is there something different about you?"
He pressed the cloth tighter to his chest. "Well, I have been working out more lately."
"No, it is not that." Her eyes moved up and down his body. "Although you do look very fit. I was referring to…" She frowned. "Did you have them done professionally?"
Fornell allowed the fabric he was using to cover his shame to drop, revealing his perky B-cups. "These were a mistake!"
"Well, I am sure your surgeon can…"
"There was no surgeon involved! I took a pill and these grew! I don't want them! I don't even know what I've found so great about them all the years I didn't have my own!"
David rolled her eyes and backed up, lathering conditioner into her hair. "Now you know how women feel."
"This is not funny! If word about this gets out…no criminal in the world is going to take an arresting officer with breasts seriously!" His windpipe suddenly contracted. He gasped a correction, "I mean a male arresting officer with breasts!"
She withdrew her hand and continued her shower, still unimpressed with his predicament. "They were not noticeable under your suit when I saw you at the grocery store last week."
"That doesn't mean…" He swallowed hard. She worked for Gibbs, who could keep a secret forever, or until jurisdictions crossed. She also worked with DiNot-zo, who couldn't keep his mouth shut to save his life and would probably call everyone in the FBI directory with a piece of news like this. Drastic steps would have to be taken, and he doubted he could beat her in a fight. Fornell made his decision. "Whatever you want, you can have it. Money, US citizenship, my help covering up any crime you might like to commit…"
Her soapy sponge ceased making circles over her skin. "Why are you trying to bribe me?"
"So you won't tell anyone about…these!" he finished in a shout, cupping the offending mounds for emphasis.
She shrugged. "You have breasts. I have noticed it is not uncommon for men of a certain age in this country."
"But not me!"
"I will not tell anyone…"
"If…" she met his eye, "you tell me why you took a pill to grow them in the first place."
"I told you, they were a mistake. Just a side effect of a pill that was supposed to do something else entirely!"
"And what was that pill for?"
"It was…" He flashed back to a month before, an email promising results beyond his wildest dreams. He should have known better, but the before and after pictures had looked so real! And the price was reasonable. Maybe the Scotch had convinced him to place the order, but he'd been sober when he took the damned pills.
"Male enhancement! They were supposed to be for male enhancement, alright?"
"So instead of a larger penis, you got breasts?" It sounded so much more depressing when a beautiful naked woman said it; as if the fact that he was more concerned with his own breasts than hers didn't already indicate his level of depression. "Have you taken action against the company?"
"A lawsuit? Have I been unclear about how much I would like to keep this private, Officer David?"
She turned off her shower and toweled off. "Yes, you have." Her wet towel hit him in the face as she tossed it over the partition to him and sauntered out of the shower room in only her flip-flops.
She was almost dressed by the time he'd covered himself sufficiently and waited for two masculine voices to move from the locker room to the sauna. "I really appreciate your discretion, Officer David. This issue is supposed to resolve on its own in a month or two."
"Provided you have stopped taking the pills."
He hung his head. "I should have known it was too good to be true. Before you go, will you answer one question for me?"
She paused with her backpack slung over her shoulder. "Possibly."
"Why are you in the men's room?"
"Why are you? You are the one with the larger breasts. Not that I will tell anyone."
He pulled his shirt and thick sweater on before she had disappeared around the row of lockers.