OK guys, although in the UK season 5 has only just ended, as a massive NCIS geek I've been keeping up to date with everything that's happening in the current series – well, 'series six' now, I guess, and I heard about what happened to Ziva at the end. I might have got some facts wrong but hopefully that won't be too important or relevant, just needed to vent my spleen and also wanted an opportunity for some major Tiva. Won't be too gushy or romantic, promise :)

The room was small. The chair was hard. The light was bright in her eyes.

If only she'd never left.

The knife was cold against her untouched skin and then sliced with a brilliant ease. Blood dripped. It was warm on her lips.

If only Tony was here.

The laugh was cold and cruel and harder than the blade. Enjoyment. A blunt and numbing punch to her side. She heard a rib break. It simply added to her pain.

If only she hadn't been so stupid.

His rough and callused hand cradled her face like a lover should. She did not hear his words, knowing what they were, what they threatened. She gazed flatly into his eyes and did not unnerve him.

If only Tony hadn't killed Michael. If only she'd been able to stop him. If only she heard Gibbs' dry monotone outside right now. If only she could hear gunshots and shouting.

Instead, an absolute calm. It chilled her bones and left her aching and empty. She closed her eyes and imagined them all. How disappointed they would be in her. How they would never think to search for her. How she had abandoned them and it would always appear that way.

She would never speak to Abby on the telephone again. Never send a postcard to Ducky. Never have lunch with McGee. Never kiss Tony like she'd always wanted to. Never wake up beside him in the quiet half-light of a shared dawn. A shared night. A shared bed. Shared heat.

Gibbs? How could she have lost two fathers without ever really having one to begin with? Another blow to the head and she knows there's not long left. Oh, she'll never give it up. She'll never say a word.

In her minds eye there is only Tony. He smiles, casually shoots her tormentor in the head and kicks the corpse aside. True love. He picks her up, tender and slow, and carries her away. Takes her home.

If only, if only, if only...

When he arrives, her finds her half dead. Her breathing is shallow and erratic, her eyes bruised and closed. Her lip bleeding. Her face cut and bloodied. Her can feel the broken bones underneath the torn silk of her skin. He lifts her from the floor, from the cell, into the bright white light of the day. She does not stir. And he takes her home.