A chill ran down Lily's back for what seemed like the 100th time that day. This time Abby caught it. "Are you okay?" she questioned, concern on her features. She had been watching her friend for the past couple days as she had been acting odd. She noticed that Lily seemed a bit sluggish, and would shiver at the most random of times. Not to mention she had been looking rather flush.
Lily glanced to her boss, "yeah, why do you ask?" She would would admit that she hadn't been feeling one hundred percent, but it wasn't something that would stop her from working. She was probably just coming down with a cold. Nothing a good night's sleep and some Tylenol couldn't fix.
"You shivered again. And your face is pink-ish. Also, you look tired. Are you sick?"
"No. If I am it's just a cold. I shivered because it is a bit chilly in here, Abby."
Just to be sure, Abby went to check the thermostat. "It hasn't been touched. It's the same temperature it's always been. Why don't you go see Ducky?" Abby suggested. It wouldn't hurt, even if it was just a cold.
Lily rolled her eyes. "No thank you. I'm fine, Abby. Really."
"Please? Just for piece of mind?"
The woman sighed. It was no use to argue over such a petty thing. Besides, she hadn't the energy to argue. "Alright. I'll go. I want double wages for this," she teased, which caused Abby to roll her eyes, but grin smugly as she knew she had won. Abby watched as the woman left, and went back to work.
Down in Autopsy, Ducky was talking with a deceased Marine as he cut him open. "You were much too young, my boy. It seems everyone keeps getting younger and younger as they come in here." he murmured, "but don't worry, you haven't died in vain. The best agents are looking for your killer, they'll get him and he'll get what he's due."
"Good Morning Ducky. Have I interrupted?" Lily called from the other side of the large room.
Startled, Ducky looked up. "Oh. Not really, nothing that can't be put off a few minutes. What can I do for you my dear?" he questioned, setting down the scalpel and removing the used gloves.
Lily looked to the body on Autopsy. With all of her close calls, it could have been her on that table. Clearing her head, she looked to the older man. "Abby thinks I'm sick and therefore thinks I need to see you. I admit I'm feeling off, but it's nothing serious. Maybe just the beginning of a cold."
"Abigail does like looking out for her friends. Hop up on the table." He said, walking over to his desk to get his stethoscope. "The flu is going around the building. Mr. Palmer went him sick yesterday. It would not surprise me if you had it as well. What symptoms are you showing?" Ducky questioned, placing the diaphragm over her heart. "Deep breath."
She inhaled deeply and exhaled before answering. "Abby says I'm looking pink, but I've been shivering despite that the temperature in the lab is normal. I am feeling a little tired."
Ducky nodded and went to get a thermometer. "She's right. You do look flush. Open your mouth," he said and once she complied, he stuck the thermometer in. "It's amusing how many live patients I get down here as I do deceased. If I was to start charging, I do believe I could retire after only a couple years," he chuckled, removing the thermometer as it beeped. "Mm. You do have a slight fever."
"Are you ever going to retire, Dr. Mallard?" Lily questioned, frowning when he mentioned a fever. She waited for a response while he felt the lymph nodes in her neck.
"Not any time soon, I don't think. I enjoy what I do. I like helping a family to have closure, and knowing the cause of death, along with perhaps who killed them, helps a family to heal. Lift up the back of your shirt, please." Ducky said. "Tell me, how are you and Agent McGee?"
Lily's eyes widened. It had only been a month since they realized who the other was. "I... we... what?" she asked, lifting the back of her shirt.
Ducky chuckled. "Perhaps that did come out rather wrong. I meant if you two were still seeing each other." Ducky said, examining her back.
"Why? You don't think we're..." she said, trailing off.
"After that, do I really have to ask?" he teased her, "I know you two are adults. And I know what happens between adults. I'm only asking because it would be best for him now to be around you right now unless he has been vaccinated."
"What's going on Ducky?" she asked. "I've had all my vaccines. I'm military."
"Well, according to what your body says, you have the chickenpox my dear. And as you are most contagious during the early stages, it would be best not to be around anyone. You're going to be out of work for the next two weeks at least."
"How did I get them? I haven't been around anyone who has it."
"A child at the grocery store could have had it and you caught it. It's hard to say. But you have them. If you haven't started scratching by now, you will shortly. But do no scratch, it spreads the disease. Calamine lotion will help. Now I'll call Abigail and you go home to rest. You'll need it."
Once again, Lily didn't feel like arguing, so she listened to the doctor. She had hoped Tim was immune already.
Ducky wasn't joking when he said she'd need rest, but how could she? She could barely sleep, she itched all the time, and her fever kept coming and going. She was miserable and she currently wasn't happy with Tim who sat nearby, amused, as Ducky examined her. "Your pox marks are healing rather well and it may only be just a few more days before they start disappearing. Keep on not scratching them, you're doing yourself a world of good."
She just glared at the doctor. "Why am I the only one at the job who has them? Surely there must be someone else who wasn't vaccinated or exposed to them."
Ducky just chuckled. "Perhaps there is, but since it is a federal agency, most have received an immunization. Why yours didn't work I don't know. But be lucky as this could have been much worse. Usually in cases with adults, 55% don't make it due to complications while you should be back to normal in another week."
"Lucky me," she murmured, watching the doctor get up.
"Timothy is doing an excellent job at administering medicine and liquids, so I trust he'll continue on," he said towards McGee, who nodded. The doctor then gathered his materials and saw himself out, leaving Tim and Lily alone.
"Why are you and Ducky the only ones who have visited me?" she asked Tim.
"They don't want to risk getting sick," he said, sitting next to her on the bed, putting an arm around her shoulders while she laid her head on his shoulder.
"It's not nice. Why are you risking it?"
"Because thanks to my wonderful little sister, I had a horrible case of it when I was 12. It could be worse... you could be at work looking like the elephant man with a case of poison ivy being treated like a leper."
"Instead, I'm being treated like I don't exist. Out of sight, out of mind."
"But they still care about you," he said to her, "they all send greetings and their love."
She just shrugged and dozed off on his shoulder. At least someone cared enough to spend the hours not working with her until she got better. She knew there was a reason she liked him.
It was another week before Lily got Ducky's and another doctor's seal of approval to go back to work. She hated to have missed two weeks of work, but she admitted she did need the time off, even when she was better a few days ago, the extra days helped her fully recuperate. Although both doctor's said she would feel sluggish for some time.
Abby was excited to see her assistant once more, and promptly gave her a hug without any hesitation. However, she really felt the love when she saw a little.. thing... on her desk. She couldn't quite explain what it was, but upon reading the tag she discovered it was a "Giant Microbe" of the chickenpox virus (giantmicrobes-dot-com-forwardslash-us-forwardslash-products-forwardslash-chickenpox-dot-html). She turned to Abby, an immediate suspect, but Abby shook her head and pointed to the other woman's computer monitor where three mini-microbes were attached. Lily laughed when she realized that they were white blood cells.
"Tony?" she asked. He could have been just as guilty. Again, Abby shook her head and pointed to the shelf above her monitor where a "GIGANTIC microbe" of Mononucleosis, or "the kissing disease", which had McGee's picture pinned to it. That received an eye roll. "And Ziva." Abby added on.
Finally, Lily gave in. She knew Tim could easily be a suspect but that was too easy.
"Gibbs." Abby said simply, smiling. Lily was floored. Who knew the man had such a sense of humor? Apparently Ducky had purchased a small vase with an artificial flower with a small "welcome back" balloon in it as well. With a smile on her face, she finally got to work, feeling quite loved. Even though she had been sick, the time spent with Tim was wonderful, and she was kind of glad they weren't interrupted. She had re-learned things about him and vice versa. Perhaps getting sick wasn't so bad.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: Don't expect another update like this. I was surprised myself, but I like how this one came out too. Some of you may notice that this is awfully un-team-like to not visit someone who's ill, but you don't mess around with chickenpox. While only 5% of the total number of chickenpox cases are adults there are some serious complications. I know Tim visited her, but well, can you not picture him visiting someone he cares deeply for? He was just being sweet and risking spreading the virus. It's cool.
Again, this is unbeta'd work. So I take full responsibility of all errors. Go check out the site I mentioned. I love Giant Microbes. I currently have the Flu microbe and Mono (my brother thought it would be funny after I ended up having Mono. I'm pretty sure I'll end up receiving the little Egg box set since I'm undergoing treatment for my ovaries.). I thought they were pretty unique. It's funny how kind of cute they really are.
Thanks for reading!