A/N: Ok, here it is- the final chapter of Choices. I want to thank you all for continuing to read this despite massive gaps in posting. And thank you to everyone who has taken the time to review; I loved getting every one of them.
I've had two betas along the way; thanks goes to both of you, especially to Trina109 who stuck with me and encouraged me right to the very end. Trina took time out of a sometimes incredibly busy schedule to read through chapters for me. Don't think I could've finished this without you Trina!
After all the excitement of Adams' trial, things felt like they'd changed at NCIS headquarters. It was if a massive weight had lifted off the Agency. Business still continued as usual, but there was a sense of closure.
Except for McGee.
Two weeks had passed since Adams was found guilty, and the results of McGee's psychological evaluation still hadn't been released.
He'd taken to haunting Abby's lab again. Every field call just brought it home that he was so close and yet so far. He honestly thought it was worse now than it was in the beginning. Finally even she rounded on him.
"McGee. If you ask me one more time if I think there's a problem with your psych evaluation, I am going to go crazy!"
The irony of what she'd said caught her, and she giggled. She could see by the hurt expression on McGee's face that he hadn't gotten the joke. "Sorry McGee. But seriously, they will release it when they're ready. Now, can you give me a hand with this code? There's something hinky going on."
McGee sighed as he checked his emails. He didn't actually know how he'd be notified of his reinstatement- or rejection, as the case may be. But that didn't stop him checking his emails and anticipating the intra agency mail cart every day.
Yet again, there was nothing. How long was this going to take?
He caught the sympathetic glance Ziva gave him. She really did understand; it had taken weeks after Somalia to pass her in as fit, even excluding the extra time it had taken to get her US citizenship. He slung his pack under his desk and got out the cold case file he'd been working on yesterday.
Gibbs entering the bullpen brought everyone's heads up, as usual.
"Ziva, get Ducky. Tony, gas the truck." Gibbs tossed Tony the keys as he spoke.
The team scrambled. McGee watched sadly. He'd really hoped that his psych evaluation would've come back by now; and that it was positive. To get so far and then be knocked back at the last would be too cruel for words.
"Where're we going, Boss?"
"Shenandoah; got a report of a missing Navy officer."
"Is it just us, Boss? I mean, Shenandoah is huge..."
"He won't have gone far, Tony. They've already found his leg."
"That's disturbing, Boss."
"Yeah, it is Tony. McGee!"
"Yeah Boss?" McGee looked up to see Gibbs standing over his desk.
"Congratulations, McGee. You've earned this twice."
He couldn't believe it. Gibbs was handing him something bright, shiny gold- his badge. He felt like crying. Tony and Ziva were watching him, smiling. He ran his thumb over the raised surface, grinning. He'd made it.
"Hey McGee! Are you waiting on an invitation? We need you in the field."
He looked up again to see Gibbs holding the elevator. Still grinning, he slung his pack over his shoulder and grabbed his weapon.
"On it, Boss!"