The premiere made me cry at 6.00 AM England time. I can't stop thinking about it (and my iPod is on repeat on my personal Tiva-anthem) and my friends are becoming sick of my repetitive conversation - namely, I CAN'T WAIT TILL 6.00 AM NEXT WEDNESDAY MORNING. Beautiful bruised Tony, beautiful broken Ziva, beautiful intense Tiva. Whatever she says, she is not ready to die.

Anyway. I hope you enjoy. Please review if you have time :)

Disclaimer: Most people will have read my version of the season opener, so you are all probably aware that I do not own NCIS or any characters, or storylines. But I would KILL to own the premiere (and my own personal Tony, of course).

And, um, yes. Enjoy!

When the hood was lifted, and he met her tired old eyes, that's when it began again. Seeing her pale, hopeless face. The shadows and bruises and dry lips and dirty hair. A button clicked, a switch flicked, and he began to breathe again.

Four months is a long time to be dead.

May faded and ended and he could not sleep for many nights. Her name was on his tongue and he saw her broken heart whenever he closed his eyes. But, when the calls never got through, and there was no hello, no Tony, no forgiveness...something frayed and tore away inside him. And of course it did not fix. It simply floated, hidden. He tousled his hair and put the smile on his face and carried on pretending to live. Smiling, even, sometimes.

It took him a long time to realise that, instead of eating and drinking to excess, he wasn't eating and drinking at all. There was no will to continue. No will to spill over into insanity. Only this bleak wish to end.

So when he began looking for replacements, he looked for those who would get on well with McGee. Who could survive Gibbs. Who would grow to love Abby. Who would warm to Ducky. His own heart was a thousand miles away, amongst dust and broken things.

There was an odd, knowing smile on her lips as she greeted him in her own little way. No hello, no Tony, no thank you. Just her, resplendent in her utter honesty. No make-up any more, David, no green silk and tight tops. Just you, your grimy body and tired soul.

That's all he needs to love her. She has never been so beautiful.

June was balmy and bright, and the weather lifted his mood. Just a little, just a fraction, but it was enough to start eating and cleaning again. He opened his curtains in the morning and looked down at his empty bed. The lack of warm, soft bodies all through the night did not bother him. It did not even touch him. Jeanne was a thousand thoughts behind. Ziva was the word on his new lips, the thought on the tip of his tongue, Ziva was there in the motors of the cars and the sounds of the city and the unwelcome beat of his own little heart. Zi-va Zi-va Zi-va.

And Ziva was there when he missed breakfast, when he was stuck in traffic, when he grabbed his gear, when he solved a case, when he ate dinner in front of the cold light of a television. Ziva was there when he slept all alone in his cold little bed.

Yes, his own heart was a thousand miles away, screaming in the eyes of a woman who forgot.

She will not tell him she is happy to see him. Perhaps she isn't. All he knows is that her body is breathing but her eyes are resigned to it. They are flat and brown and broken, and her lips speak dry words that he can't help but hear. And he can't help but tell the truth.

"Couldn't live without you, I guess."

He speaks of life whilst she speaks of death, and that is the difference between them. He sees under her clothes, through her skin, right to her very bones. They shine, bleached and dusty, out of her eyes and they split his heart right down the middle. He does not know how he ever loved anybody else.

July was when he started to falter and question. He heard words like firecracker and tight red leather pants but, although they conjured mental pictures, he could not relate them to anything. Sex and jokes. He remembered the last time he spoke to her. The gun had left a bruise over his heart. The furious tears that refused to spill from her eyes hung, suspended, when he closed his own. Sharp and lonely and desperately unbelieving. Dead lover. Cold father. And him. The cause of so much hatred, and even more love. He did not know that her hollow little heart beat to the march of a man with a gun. His own heart was a thousand miles away, aching for her.

When she said those words – I do not deserve it ­– something within him gave way, and he saw her clearly. A little, broken thing with frightened eyes and guarded lips. The black and wicked thoughts that sung to her so sweetly every time she was alone. You do not deserve it. You do not deserve anything but all the bad you get, because you have killed mothers and fathers and brothers and sisters and children and lovers. You have ended lives that could have brought about good, and you have spared those who go on to do evil. You do not deserve love. You will not receive it.

And he knew that she believed those words more than she believed the golden necklace around her throat – long gone now, so long ago – and it made him violent and pulsing.

And then he said bad words – get over yourself – as though she was nothing to him, as though she brought it all upon her two little shoulders, and she smiled that patient, knowing little smile that was so very different from the Ziva he knew, and instead of shouting she tells him I have and, worst of all, that she is ready to die.

She is ready to die.

But her eyes will not meet his.

August is when he falls, utterly and completely. A hope, a song, and a sunken ship are all it takes for words like gone and love and home to become meaningless. Grab your gear. Do not sleep. You'll see her eyes and all there will be is hate. No forgiveness, because she could not make peace before she died.

He imagines the panic, the bubbling, seeping dread as she sank with the boat. Water, ankles, knees, thighs, waist, Tony, Tony, help me, Tony, please. Tony.

And then a gasp, a rush of air, and the terrible sight of a floating, empty woman.

And they all continue, somehow, they all manage go on, and their hearts goboom boom boom like nothing at all.

His own heart is a thousand miles away, deep beneath the sea.

Ziva. Can you fight? And the answer is no, he knows it and so does she, but he wants to cry like a child not only because she can't, but because she doesn't want to. There is no will, and he knows exactly what she feels, and his will is cracking with the heat and the sweat. He wants to fuck her, angry and hating, right where she sits, crushed against the wall, crumpled on the floor. But more than that, he wants to make love to her, gently, tenderly, like lovers do, and kiss that swollen bottom lip, run his fingertips across the shadows underneath her eyes, tangle himself in her curls.

There is no reply, and then there is a knife to her throat, and he does not move an inch.

September dawns with vengeance, and his own heart is loud and empty.

Bang, bang, glass, everywhere, knives, guns, blood. He supports her tiny frame across the floor and down the corridor, and it is with a sickening jolt that he realises just how frail and thin she now is. Ribs grate, hips stretch and he is disarmed by her weight. Nothing there. Light as a feather. Almost gone. And she did not struggle.

One day when he wakes, his own little heart will not be thousands of miles away from him, but deep within his chest, and it will be beating proud and true.


Whaddya think? I'm working on another one now - post first episode, Tiva fluffiness. Look out for it :)