Disclaimer: NCIS and its characters belong to Don Bellisario and CBS, I'm just borrowing them for the moment. I own nothing except a laptop, some DVDs, books and CDs.

*Walks in, looks around* Hello there, long time no see. I haven't been very motivated to do much writing recently but hopefully this will get me back into the swing of things. Oh, this is part of my whole Tony and Jimmy friendship series, think of it as a prequel to the other two stories.

Spoilers: very slight ones to 1x16 'BĂȘte Noire' and 1x21 'Split Decision'


"Hey Ducky, Gibbs wanted to know if you have anything more to say about Staff Sergeant Grimm," Tony said as he entered autopsy without looking up from the file he was reading.

"Um, Doctor Mallard isn't here at the moment," a tentative voice answered making Tony look up from his file to find a somewhat nervous young man standing next to the morgue drawers.

"You're not Fred," Tony said.

"No, I'm not. I'm Jimmy Palmer, I just started today," the young bespectacled man said reaching out his hand, which, thankfully, was not covered with unidentifiable fluids, to Tony.

"Special Agent Anthony DiNozzo, but everyone calls me Tony," Tony replied taking the offered hand. "Do you know where Ducky is or when he'll be back?"

"I'm not sure; he went to talk to an Agent Balboa about some findings for his case."

"When he comes back can you tell him that Agent Gibbs wants to talk to him?"

"Sure thing."

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"So have you met Ducky's newest assistant yet?" asked Abby over her shoulder.

"Yes, I have."

"So, what do you think?" she asked swiveling her chair around so that she was facing Tony and not her microscope.

He shrugged but did not make any move to move away from his perch against one of her worktables. "Seems nice enough."

"Oh come on!" she protested. "You have to give me more than that, Tony!"

"Not much more to say, Abby, only talked with him for about two minutes. Have you met him?"

"I have."

"And what do you think?"

"Wouldn't you like to know," she replied with a flirtatious little smirk.

"And you say I'm the one holding out."

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"That will be all for today, Mr. Palmer, thank you. You have class tomorrow, correct?" asked Ducky looking away from the x-rays he had currently been looking at.

"Yes."

"Here you go," he said handing Jimmy a small package from his desk drawer.

"Doctor?" questioned Jimmy as he stared curiously at the package.

"To help, my dear boy, with your studies in organic chemistry, it's a subject that, next to anatomy and physiology, has proven to be quite a stumbling block for many aspiring medical students."

"Thank you, Doctor."

Just then, the pressurized doors to autopsy opened and Jimmy nearly bumped into Tony.

"Sorry about that, Agent DiNozzo," he said apologizing.

"Next time remember to look before you walk, Autopsy Gremlin," Tony replied before the doors closed on one surprised Jimmy Palmer.

"Really, Anthony?" asked Ducky from his desk.

"What? Gerald got used to it."

"Yes, but Gerald also has two older brothers so was used to that kind of treatment."

"True, the new guy is almost as green as McGee. Speaking of Gerald, when's he coming back anyway?"

"Not for awhile I'm afraid, he's still in therapy at the moment. So please, try not to scare this one away."

"I didn't scare Fred away," he protested. "Gibbs did."

"That may be true but you, my boy, certainly did not help matters."

Tony was tempted to roll his eyes but he had to concede that Ducky did have a point. "Good night Ducky, I won't be too hard on the new guy...all the time."

"Good night, Tony."

Once Tony had left, Ducky could not help but sigh, Mr. Palmer was an intelligent young man with promise, he just hoped that he could handle not just Agent Gibbs but also Tony on a regular basis.