Thanks to my beta Kristen! Aly ordered me to write this and I've finally gotten around to it. Four chapters, and the quote that sparked everything off is in bold.
Harmony of Opinion
For friendship is nothing else than a harmony of opinion on all things human and divine. – Marcus Tullius Cicero, "Essay on Friendship"
Chapter 1: Harmony
"I want to kill him!" Ziva exclaimed as she stormed into the Director's office.
Jenny was hardly surprised at this mysterious appearance. Sure, it was normally Gibbs who barged in without warning, but Ziva threatening to kill someone was not a new phenomenon. She sighed, put down her pen and removed her reading glasses.
"How can I help?" she inquired, moving around her desk to the conference table. She doubted this was going to be a normal boss/subordinate discussion, and chose to make it more informal instead.
"If he continues, I will have no choice but to relieve him of his testicles," Ziva hissed, slumping into the nearest chair and glaring at the floor. Her whole body language screamed her frustration.
"Could you give me a clue as to who has been stupid enough to cross you?" Jenny asked, determined to get to the bottom of this.
"Tony," the Israeli growled.
Jenny rolled her eyes. "I should have guessed," she muttered.
Ziva giggled softly, some of the tension leaving her. "I caught him going through my desk again," she admitted. "I have warned him enough times, but he does not seem to notice."
"I agree that Tony can be a little… juvenile, but that does not mean you should resort to violence. I am the only one allowed to kill employees around here. Perhaps you should get him back."
Ziva looked at her curiously. "Are you saying that as the Director or Jenny?"
The redhead chuckled. "Definitely Jenny. You would not warn the Director about your desire to kill him."
"Tony is a pain sometimes, I know, but killing him would be a waste of energy. I would not object if you tortured him. However, I should point out that torturing him mentally can be more fun than physical torture."
Ziva took her time to think about it. "I might have a few pranks I could use," she confessed. "How much do you remember about cars?"
"If you are referring to Cairo, I could do the same thing to Tony's car," Jenny grinned.
The two of them began to giggle. Tony wasn't going to know what had hit him.
Tony DiNozzo grumbled to himself as he entered the squad room. He was late. He was more than late – morning had just turned into afternoon.
A very small part of it was his fault. He had overslept again after a fun night out, and ended up racing through his morning routine and running for his car. Naturally, the boss would blame all of his lateness on this slight mishap.
He received the expected glare from Gibbs as he slipped into his seat. "Sorry, boss," he offered.
"Finally decided to join us?" Gibbs questioned, looking as though he was a short step from asking Ducky to perform a free autopsy.
"Well… you see… it wasn't my fault," he protested.
The look Gibbs gave him would have caused a lesser man to wilt and die. But Tony reminded himself that DiNozzos were made of sterner stuff.
"Someone tampered with my car!"
In an instant, Gibbs seemed to calm down. Tony understood why; all of them had dealt with criminals who were happy to attempt to kill them for revenge. And he collected enemies like other people collected stamps. If they had to draw up one more list of people who could have framed him for murder, Tony planned to set Ziva on every last one of them.
"They slit my tires," he explained, thankful that he appeared likely to survive the day. "They did it so they went down slowly while I was driving. I was on the Beltway when my car refused to go any further."
"Sounds like someone with expertise," McGee piped up. "Most people would simply slit the tires so you couldn't drive at all."
"Someone who is good with a knife," Ziva added.
"When I find out who did it, they're dead," Tony promised, turning his computer on. All he had to do was figure out how to get home now.
Leroy Jethro Gibbs had a funny feeling he knew who had been responsible for Tony's mishap. Ziva had looked a little too pleased with herself when she had learnt the news.
Not that he could blame her. Tony had been needling Ziva a lot lately. As long as blood wasn't spilt, he planned to stay out of the way. The Israeli was capable of hiding her actions from her partner, luckily saving him from refereeing a fight.
He stepped into the darkness of MTAC, glad to be away from his team for a little while. Tony had decided to write a list of everyone who might have damaged his car, and naturally McGee and Ziva had stopped their work to join in. The list was as long as he had expected it to be, and he knew it wouldn't be finished any time soon. There was no point in him hanging around.
And there was no point in stopping it either. Tony needed to relax after his morning. The others would not work if Tony wasn't. He didn't want to be the only one working in the squad room and he suspected Jenny needed more coffee.
She was standing in front of the screen, watching the last few moments of a completed mission. He stayed out of the way until she returned to her seat. Her lips curved into a smile as she caught sight of the drink.
"Long night?" he asked, taking the seat next to her.
"I had a few hours break," she admitted. "I'm going to stay here for a little while longer, I think."
"You need to sleep," he reminded her. Caffeine would only help her for so long.
"I'll sleep later," she decided. "I have a function to attend tonight."
He nodded his head softly, his gaze returning to the screen.
"I heard Tony was late this morning," she smiled. "Did he oversleep?"
He turned back to look at her, surprised by the glimmer of amusement in her eyes. It took him a moment to work out what it was – she knew why Tony had been late. And if she knew, she and Ziva must have been in it together.
"I'll get back to you on that," he replied, standing up and leaving. If the girls could gang up on his agent, the boys could gang up for revenge.