Title: A View Of The Elevator
Tv show: NCIS
Main characters: Tony/Ziva
Also: Gibbs, McGee
Summary: Tony is late for work and runs into Ziva. They haven't seen each other since the events in Tel Aviv.
Spoilerwarning for "Semper Fidelis" and "Aliyah"!!
A View Of The Elevator
Tony ran around the corner to be in time to catch the elevator. He knew that cup of tea with the lonely neighbour would come back to haunt him. "Hold it, please." He threw his backpack between the sliding doors and stopped it. "Well, thanks for that." He didn't bother to turn around. Someone who wouldn't even hold the elevator for two seconds longer didn't deserve a 'good morning'.
"Good morning, Tony."
With a shock, Tony realised he knew that voice. He slowly turned around and faced a stern looking Ziva. Her voice had not sounded friendly, and he immediately knew things were not back as to what they once were. She had sounded cool; as if she knew it was inevitable Tony would find out they were in an elevator together. Revealing herself now instead of Tony finding out later was the lesser of two evils.
Tony returned her look with the same: "Well, well, officer David. I hadn't expected you back in Washington." He didn't smile.
"Me neither." She avoided his eyes for a few seconds as she said that.
"What are you doing here?" He didn't want to sound unfriendly, but couldn't help it.
"I need to talk to director Vance and special agent Gibbs." Tony noticed how she spoke their boss' name with his full NCIS title, as to distance herself from the agency.
"Ah." Tony wasn't sure yet what that meant.
It struck him that she wasn't wearing her Star of David-necklace. Had she fallen off of her faith? He looked at her with questioning, but unrevealing eyes, and suddenly became aware the elevator wasn't moving. Neither had pressed a floor button.
"You don't even remember what floor we're on?" He showed no emotion.
"No. I was only rethinking my reasons for being here." She moved uncomfortably.
"Which are?" Tony wanted to know. He needed to know.
"I can't discuss that with you." She avoided his look, again.
"Huh," Tony mumbled. He wasn't impressed, but as Ziva looked to the right, he noticed a slight cut against her right temple. She noticed his stare, and turned her head back. He tried to check her face further, but bad lighting in the elevator prevented that.
The doors slid open and a middle-aged man stepped in. He pressed the button for the fifth floor, and the elevator moved. They were all silent. Tony wondered if the man had noticed that he was the only one who had pressed a button.
As it reached the fifth floor, the elevator doors slid open and the man walked out.
As the doors slid shut again, Tony jumped over to the side and the elevator went dead. The lights went out too, which Tony regretted. There was no way he could see her face properly now.
"What happened?" Tony looked at her intently, neither too friendly, nor too strictly. He hoped she knew he still cared a lot for her.
"Nothing," Ziva answered a bit too quickly. As she saw Tony raise his eyebrows, she added: "Nothing you need to know."
"Yet. You were my teammate for four years. If you even remember that." Tony sounded bitter, but he was determined to found out eventually. The fact she was responding this way told him it was something serious, or she would have told him the truth.
"Of course I remember." Ziva's voice sounded unsure, but not mad or annoyed, which, Tony thought, was already something. They hadn't seen each other since Gibbs, Vance and Tony left Tel Aviv without her. He didn't know if she was mad at him. If she still thought he had killed Rivkin without mercy.
"How are you?" Ziva asked.
Tony thought it was forced, and he laughed a little, almost sarcastically. He thought to himself that she pretended like he had turned off the elevator to exchange their holiday plans.
"Cut the crap, Ziva. Why are you here? I have the right to know." He knew he overstepped a line, but it was how he felt. At first he had still felt guilty, but after the weeks went by it turned into anger. Why didn't Ziva trust him? He, who she had been through so much with.
It was indeed the trigger.
"Excuse me?!" Her voice turned high-pitch. "You have the right to know? Since when? Gibbs chose you! Not me! You! He kicked me out of NCIS." She turned red. "You killed Michael and now you have the right to know why I'm here?" She pointed towards each other as she spoke, and paced up and down the small elevator.
"I'm your team member, Ziva. Your friend." Tony's voice was soft and sincere. He felt his emotions going from right to left and back within seconds.
"You were my teammate, and my friend. But you killed my friend, and I cannot forgive you for that. I made a deliberate choice to not work with you anymore, and I am not coming back to it." She seemed determined and sad at the same time.
"So you are planning to come back to NCIS, but you just don't want to be in the same team as me?" Tony raised his voice.
He had waited for her to call him. She had never. It should have been a sign there was permanently something damaged between them, but he hadn't seen it, or was just afraid to acknowledge it.
"Yes. Although, I am not sure if I want to come back. Whether they want me back at all." The hardness that had been in her eyes disappeared to be replaced by uncertainty.
"Right. But never in a team with me? Even if that means to be in a team without Gibbs or McGee?" Tony was now the one who had the stern look in his eyes.
"Yes," Ziva said softly.
"Or was it your daddy Mossad-director who wanted you to go back to jolly America, but you had rather staid away?" Tony was angered by that affirmation. He often said the wrong things when angry.
Ziva didn't answer, but looked offended, and still sad.
"So you still believe Rivkin should have staid alive instead of me?"
Ziva didn't answer straight away and that slightly lifted Tony's anger and hopes at the same time.
"I don't know anymore, okay!" She yelled at him. "He was a well-trained Mossad agent, and you know as well as I do that he should have easily killed you."
"Don't, Tony! This is not the time!" Ziva was serious and looked heated.
"As I have already told you, I hadn't killed him if my life hadn't been in danger, and you damn well know it, David!" Tony was sick and tired of Ziva not being honest with herself. "And yours!" He added. He couldn't help it.
Ziva looked at him in fury now: "And mine what?"
"Your life was in danger too. That is why I went after Rivkin in the first place. Call it that famous gut." He slammed his fist against the door. "You keep ignoring the fact that I went after this guy for you!" His hand hurt like hell, and felt like he had said this a dozen times, but kept hoping this was the one that stuck.
"You were after him for yourself, Tony! Not for me, for yourself!" She pointed at his chest again. "You said multiple times that it wasn't out of jealousy. How can you say that it was because of me now?"
"Don't you get it? Of course I don't want to loose you! I knew something was wrong. I got more intel and went to your apartment. He attacked me, Ziva!" He waited a few seconds before he continued. "There was a fight. We were both injured, and then he came at me with a glass pick, alright? I was on the floor, couldn't get up, and had no other choice!" He was breathing heavily, and his voice echoed around the elevator. "At least Gibbs believes me! I know that that should mean a lot to you too."
Ziva didn't respond, but her chest went up and down from shallow breathing. She looked at him intensely, but Tony wasn't sure with what emotion. She slammed the elevator panel, and it came back to life.
Tony still faced her and watched her closely. Now the lights had come on, he noticed another scar under her left cheekbone. He became concerned. There really had happened something serious.
Ziva noticed the change in Tony's attitude, and she looked at him with sadness. Tony knew she still struggled.
Then the sound of opening elevator doors filled the cramped space.
"Wow. That was a long ride from downstairs." It was Gibbs smiling at them. Tony knew he was trying to lighten the mood, as their faces must have shown all sorts of emotions. Though, Tony couldn't care less at the moment what Ziva felt about the situation. She was still wrongly accusing him, and whatever happened to her, she was never planning on telling him personally anyway.
Gibbs kissed Ziva on the cheek, as Tony paced passed them towards his desk, and didn't give either of them another look. He had said what he had wanted, and he didn't think there was anything else he could say that would make her change her mind, or make her see the truth. Maybe time, but he wasn't sure.
From the corner of his eye, he saw her and Gibbs walk passed him up the stairs, Ziva saying a short greeting towards McGee. He was secretly hoping Vance would grant her mercy and that Gibbs would take her back on the team. After all, he had not selected a new team member yet, and it had been three months.
Suddenly two hands grabbed Tony's shoulders. "Hey Tony, look what's on your desk." Gibbs patted him on the shoulders from behind. In front of Tony stood a large coffee cup. Tony smiled. "Thanks boss." He grabbed the cup and took a sip, soon followed by a splatter all over his keyboard. It was Gibbs' coffee.
"You didn't expect Gibbs would remember your taste in coffee, did you?" McGee was gloating next to him. "I think he saw you and Ziva get on the elevator together. He was eyeing the doors for a while, and I was wondering why. Then suddenly he stood up, grabbed his own cup and put it on your desk." McGee looked to the spot where the cup has stood on Gibbs' desk, as if he had seen a real miracle. "Then I saw you two come out of the elevator together. And all made sense."
"Ah boss. Our boss." Tony was still smiling, and took another sip from the cup, even though he didn't like it. "My boss."