Whipping the car around the traffic circle, Ziva headed to US-1 South and continued driving. She could not believe this was happening. And worst of all she had pulled Tony into it too. No, she could not tell him what was going on. Ziva didn't want Tony in trouble because of her.
Pushing harder on the gas pedal, Ziva swerved lanes, jutting in between traffic. "Tony, I should not have called you. I panicked and needed you, but I should have done this alone. I am a Mossad agent, I am trained for this."
"Zi, you have been an NCIS agent for three years. Maybe your gut told you that you couldn't do it by yourself," Tony studied his partner. Her knuckles were white as she gripped the wheel. Her eyes were dark with worry.
She banged the wheel in frustration, "I should be able to survive on my own."
Tony raised his voice to contradict her, "No Ziva, you shouldn't. That is why we have each other, to help each other survive what life puts us through on the job and off. So stop second guessing your gut and tell me what is going on."
Ziva glanced at Tony out of the corner of her eye and smirked, "Thank you Tony. That was a good perp talk."
"It's pep talk, Zi. We catch perps," Tony rolled his eyes and smiled.
Taking a deep breath, Ziva started talking, "Last night I thought someone was following me so I tried to lose them and drove all around the city until I was satisfied that they were gone. Nothing was out of place at home so I went about my night as usual. At nearly two in the morning something woke me up, so I got my Sig and started creeping around my apartment.
"Something in the kitchen was off so studied it until I realized a small knife was missing from my set. Glancing around, I then noticed that my window was cracked open but as I was looking I saw the reflection of a man dressed in black coming at me with the knife so I spun aiming a kick at his hand. We fought and I managed to win. Then I decided I needed to go so I was going to make my way to a hotel so I got my 'go' bag I still keep ready. When I came out of my bedroom, another man tried to attack me. After I escaped from him, I knew that the men were part of a team and they were trying to take me alive. I left my apartment unseen by the others and got a good look at a few of the other men," Ziva sped through the traffic nervously checking her rear view mirrors for tails.
Tony whistled lightly, "How many in all did you see? Do you have any idea why they are after you?"
"I saw six including the two from my apartment," Ziva paused and checked her mirrors. She looked almost ashamed as she peeked over at Tony.
"Come on, Zi. What is it? Why are they after you?" Tony placed a hand gently on her shoulder for encouragement pushing aside the warmth that spread through him from the contact.
Ziva ignored Tony's hand warming her shoulder and answered, "It could be because I did not exactly finish my mission for them and then I told them I did."
Tony opened his mouth, but for once wasn't quite sure how to respond.
Ziva elaborated so he didn't have to ask, "My dad has not always been the director of Mossad so he had some questionable relationships with outside sources. Occasionally, he would allow these sources to utilize Mossad agents to take care of some of their...problems."
"Okay, so are they bad guys?" Tony frowned.
"Sometimes, I never knew too much about them. I worked with them twice and the first time the group was positive, but the second one seemed to be acting good. Their purpose was more sinister, they wanted to eliminate someone in Lebanon. It was obvious, I was really working for the Hizbollah, but I was not allowed to refuse the mission or ask questions since I was a relatively young operative," Ziva stopped lost in thoughts of the past. She let a sigh of relief escape as she merged onto the I-95 South and weaved through the traffic.
Tony broke the silence dying to know what she hadn't told him yet, "So what happened?"
Ziva smiled a crooked slightly sad smile, "I did not kill the targets." She took a deep breath and blinked slowly, "I could not kill them. It was the President's son and wife. The son was only fifteen and both were good religious people that only wanted to better the country. The son was bound to run for presidency and fix the country. Before the mission, I did some snoopy around and found out the President was a part of Hizbollah and wanted to get rid of his family to ensure the country would remain corrupt. He was a power hungry man and had sent orders to kill his own family. I could not do that."
A low whistle escaped Tony's lips, "That is messed up. You 'did some' snooping around, Snoopy is a cartoon dog. So how did they just now find out, you didn't kill them?"
"I went on the mission and went to the president's house, but instead of taking them and killing them. I took them and then warned them providing safe houses for them to live at until the son was ready to become president. So I am guessing the son has just come forward as a candidate this year and now they know I did not kill them as I said I did and they intend to punish me for that," Ziva tried to release the stress from her shoulders.
"You did the right thing, Zi. That boy could really help the country now and all we have to do is No. 1 keep you alive and No. 2 get all the terrorists related to this out of the way. Piece of cake!," Tony smiled.
Ziva clenched her jaw, "Tony, I am so sorry, I drug you into this."
Tony squeezed her shoulder, "Don't apologize, it's a sign of weakness. I would have been mad at you if you hadn't called me. So what's the plan partner?"
"We are going to North Carolina and will hole up there for a while where we will decide how to go about this," Ziva exhaled loudly.
"Stop stressing, my crazy Ninja chick. We can do this," Tony pulled out his laptop and powered it up, "Okay, let's talk strategy."
Ziva smiled fully, "Tony, you are crazy, but do you have any ideas on how to wipe out part of a terrorist organization?"
"I have a few ideas, but first things first. Code names and Mission name!" Tony laughed at Ziva's confused expression, "Ziva, everyone in action movies have code names at some point and we have to name this mission so when it is over we can refer to it without confusion with another mission."
A laugh escaped Ziva and her grip on the wheel relaxed slightly, "Okay, what is your code name?"
"Bond, James Bond! And you can be Evelyn Salt!" Tony smiled widely, "I love a good action movie."
"You do realize, this is real, yes?" Ziva's eyebrows lowered slightly.
Tony whipped around in his seat to look at her, "Of course, but it'll be better if we don't let the reality of the situation evolve into fear cause then what good will we do for Lebanon. So you get to name the mission,"
"Oh, Tony. I have no idea," Ziva squinted her eyes trying to think of something, "Justice Call because we are righting a wrong in the world and I called you to help me."
Tony smiled his full watt smile at her, "Great mission name, Salt!"
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