Standard disclaimers apply.


"What's your name?"

"Special Agent Tony Dinozzo."

"Are you Jethro's son?"

Tony stopped moving. His left hand rested on the metal chair across the table from Abraham in Interrogation Room Two. He didn't know why they weren't using Interrogation Room One. The sound system was older, but Abraham probably couldn't tell them anything, anyway.

Tony sat down, and said, "I need to ask you a couple of questions, Abraham. I want you to answer me as honestly and accurately as possible."

"Of course," he said, his eyes earnest as he spread his fingers out on the table top. "Lying is wrong. Thou shalt not bear false witness. It's one of the Ten Commandments."

Tony smiled, but it didn't reach his eyes.

"Your dad is nice," said Abraham.

Tony laughed, even though Abraham wasn't being sarcastic. He was talking about Tony's boss, not his dad. Tony stopped laughing suddenly, and pressed against his closed eyelids with his fingers tips. He was developing a headache. Honor thy mother and thy father. There wasn't a commandment about honoring thy children.

"You don't think he's nice?" Abraham asked.

"He's nice," Tony agreed. "When he's had his coffee in the morning."

"Is Tony short for Anthony?" asked Abraham. Tony prayed Gibbs wasn't watching him through the mirrored window. He didn't want his boss to see him being interrogated by the witness.

"You belong to a sect of Islam, don't you?" he asked.

Abraham nodded.

"I don't know if there are Muslim saints," said Tony, "But in Catholicism, Saint Anthony is the patron saint of lost things, and missing persons. Your friend is missing, and we need to find him. Can you to tell me about him?"

"Sharif wasn't nice," said Abraham. "Jethro is nice. You're nice too."

"Thank you, Abraham." Tony closed his eyes.

"He said he was going to meet me at 3:00 p.m."

Tony blinked. "Did he say anything else?"

"He said he was going to buy me dinner."

"Anything else?" he pressed.

"He lied. Thou shalt not bear false witness. He didn't buy me dinner. I'm hungry, Tony."

Tony didn't say anything, but he pulled a vending machine chocolate bar out of his expensive Italian pocket, and handed it to Abraham.

"Thank you, Tony," Abraham smiled.

He pulled the foil wrapper apart with careful fingers, and took a bite. Tony waited until he had finished the chocolate before he said, "Where did you meet Sharif?"

Abraham folded the wrapper and put it in his pocket. "Sharif left me alone."

"I'm sorry," lied Tony. If his friends wired him with C4, he would want them to leave him alone.

Abraham tapped his fingertips against the table, beating out a staccato rhythm. "Have you ever been left alone?"

Tony thought about the Catholic boarding school he had been exiled to as a child. He thought about a hand on his shoulder. "You'll do," but Tony didn't know what to do. He thought about Jethro, who walked with the Israelites when God parted the Red Sea, and he thought about Leroy Jethro Gibbs standing by the Caribbean Sea. He thought about his mother, and he thought about Kate, who died insulting him.

"Yes," he said.

Abraham, with his backpack, and his C4 and his wide eyes nodded, and Tony knew he understood.

"You need to say a prayer to Saint Anthony," said Abraham.

"I'm not good at praying, Abraham."

He considered Tony's words. "Jethro can say a prayer for you."

Tony smiled, but it didn't reach his eyes. "I don't think so."

"Your dad isn't good at praying?" asked Abraham.

"My dad isn't good at talking," said Tony, leaning back in his chair. He didn't know who he was talking about, but it didn't matter. He'd always been a hands on project. Hands down. Handed off.

"Honor thy mother and thy father," said Abraham."It's one of the Ten Commandments."

"Commandments are important, aren't they?"

"Everyone needs rules."

"Never go anywhere without a knife," said Tony, his voice solemn.

"What?" asked Abraham.

The rule had helped Tony on the promenade, when Ziva needed his army knife to diffuse the C4. Gibbs had ordered them to leave the blast zone, but they stayed. McGee had crouched down next to the bench, even though he was about to wet his pants. "Thirty seconds," he had said.

"Do you want another chocolate bar?" asked Tony. Abraham nodded, and Tony stood up, pushing his metal chair out of the way. "I'll be back in a minute." He stepped into the hall and turned towards the vending machines, his eyes on the synthetic carpet underneath his expensive Italian shoes, until he saw a door open in front of him.

Gibbs stepped out of the the surveillance area for Interrogation Room Two, and shut the door behind him. Tony leaned against the wall, not looking at his boss. "I don't think he can tell us anything."

"You'd be surprised," said Gibbs, echoing Tony's words from the promenade.

"Do you want to talk to him?" asked Tony.

"No. He can leave."

Tony frowned.

"Do you agree with Abraham?" asked Gibbs, amusement in his voice.

"About what?"

"Lying."

"Boss, you lie all the time." Tony laughed. "You told Abraham I was your son."

Gibbs raised his hand suddenly and hit the back of Tony's head, his palm brushing his senior field agent's hair. It didn't hurt, but Tony had a headache. He reached up and touched the back of his head.

"What was that for?" he asked.

"Honor thy mother and thy father," Gibbs said. He tapped Tony's jaw with calloused fingers.

Tony smiled, and it reached his eyes.