"Would you please just look at the map?"
Gibbs' voice was a low growl, but Abby refused to budge. She shook her head, pigtails flying. "No, Gibbs. I can get this to work and it'll tell us where we are and where we need to go."
Gibbs sighed in frustration. "Where we need to go is where the dead petty officer is, Abs." He looked out of the car window at the dwindling sunlight. "Where we are is LOST!" His voice rose on the last word.
"We're not lost," Abby argued. "We're…misplaced!" She touched the screen of the GPS unit a few more times, sure that her last maneuver with the system would do the trick. "See?" She held out the screen for Gibbs to read.
"Great," he said. "Now all we have to do is look out for the Eifel Tower and turn left." He grabbed the GPS unit and turned it toward Abby, showing her that it indicated the car they were driving was on the Champs Elysees and not where they presently were, somewhere in West Virginia.
Abby snatched the unit back, glaring at Gibbs and proceeded to punch in more information into the system. Gibbs sighed again, running a hand through his hair. The more they delayed their arrival at the crime scene, the more evidence would be lost.
They'd received the call about the dead petty office two hours ago. Abby was subbing for Jimmy Palmer, due to the ME's assistant being away to study for his final exams. She should have been driving Ducky, as Palmer did, but Gibbs discovered she'd never driven the van before and therefore wasn't qualified, leaving McGee to drive the mobile forensic unit. Tony and Ziva were in one of their bickering cycles so Gibbs had banished them to the back of the van, forcing Abby to be navigator. He'd had no idea she would be using an electronic GPS unit once they'd left the main highway and lost site of the other NCIS team. GPS units had their place, usually when they were used to locate a suspect or track, but Gibbs had never felt comfortable leaving his fate up to this kind of technology. He was old school, and trusted maps. Real maps you could fold and write on and tuck in your back pack or pocket. Not maps that flicked off and on and off again, or put you in the middle of the desert when you were actually at the Navy Yard.
But Abby believed in technology. She believed in small boxes of electronics that told her what things were and how things worked and apparently, where to go and how to get there.
"Abby," Gibbs said. "Just grab the road atlas from the back and let's see where we are."
"It worked fine before," she grumbled, flicking off her seat belt before kneeling up on the seat. "It's you, Gibbs." She leaned over the seat, her jumpsuit covered behind high in the air. "You have some kind of mojo that freaks out these things."
"Abby, we're in the mountains," Gibbs argued. "I don't even think we'll have cell phone reception, much less satellite reception."
Abby whirled on him. "It's not that far into the mountains, Gibbs," she argued. "And the guy who sold me the GPS unit said it would work anywhere." She tossed the road atlas to Gibbs. "Anywhere!"
"You're taking it back when we return," he murmured, thumbing through the atlas. The turned the well worn pages to the back. Virginia…Washington…Wisconsin…Wyo… "Shit." Gibbs held up the atlas, shaking it a bit to see if the missing pages were just randomly tucked back into the binder. Nothing. "Son of a bitch."
This time Gibbs was the one unbuckling his seat belt, opening his door and exiting the car, only to open the back and pull out the box sitting on the seat.
"What's wrong?" Abby asked, working on the GPS screen once more.
"No West Virginia," Gibbs explained, rifling through the other maps located in the box. DC…DC…Norfolk…Richmond…some park maps…Aruba… That had to be DiNozzo's, Gibbs thought. But no West Virginia. Gibbs threw the unusable maps back into the box and sat down, pulling out his phone. Sure enough, no cell reception. "We'll drive back the way we came and see if we remembered where that damn thing made us turn wrong."
"No scoffing, Gibbs," Abby proclaimed triumphantly. "I have programmed it right this time, I just know it." She bit at her lower lip and made on more input. "A-HA!" Abby turned the unit to face Gibbs.
"Yep, you did it, Abby," he agreed, taking the small device and showing her once more. "But I don't think we're in Kansas anymore."
A dejected Abby took the unit from his hand, refusing to look at their location in downtown Wichita.