The next two weeks were long, but pleasantly uneventful. It was something that was very much welcomed after the past six months.
Tim spent those two weeks recovering. He wasn't fully healed. His ribs were still wrapped, his leg still had a cast, and his wrists were still bandaged. But, he not longer had any stitches on his face and his bruises were healing up quite nicely, although they were still visible.
"Abby, I'm fine," Tim said as she helped him to his bed. He had just been released from the hospital and she and Gibbs had brought him home.
"You're not fine, Tim."
"I have crutches to help me walk, my ribs don't hurt too bad, and my wrists feel fine. I can make it to my bed."
"I don't care if you can make it or not, I'm helping you there."
He knew there was no point to argue, he never won arguments between him and Abby anyway.
His face scrunched up in pain as he sat back on his bed. He didn't want to admit it, not after what he just said, but Abby holding onto his arms did help, a lot.
"Now, just lay back and I'll get you whatever you want."
"I don't have anything to eat or drink here besides water, Abbs," He reminded her, "And energy drinks."
"Not anymore," Gibbs said as he entered the room carrying a glass of Gatorade.
Tim's eyebrows furrowed, "Where'd that come from."
Abby smiled, "Gibbs bought you groceries!" She said happily.
Tim's eyes widened as he looked at Gibbs, "You? You bought me stuff?"
"He did really good too," Abby added, "He got almost everything that you really like. I didn't know he knew you so well. I didn't even have to tell him about your love for dinosaur cereals!"
Tim's face reddened, "It's a childhood thing."
Again, Gibbs replied with an, "Mhm."
The next day, Tim walked out of the elevator and into the bullpen, Abby following closely behind. She had spent the night with him, and then spent the next morning trying to convince him not to go to work… Apparently there was an argument she couldn't win with him.
"I tried to stop him, Gibbs!" She exclaimed before he even saw Tim.
Gibbs looked up. When he saw Tim standing there he got out of his seat, "McGee, what are you doing here?"
"I'm here to work."
"You just got out of the hospital."
"Yeah, and now I'm ready to work."
Tony walked around his desk, "McGee, you're not even completely healed yet. You still look pretty bad."
"The work can't wait, Tony," Tim replied, "We have to find John. I can help. Both Abby and I can. We both spent time with him. If we tell you guys what he said and did then we can build a profile of him… figure out where he might have gone-"
Gibbs sighed, "McGee-"
"He... He had a thick country accent. He didn't care to punch and kick me, but I saw hesitation when he was with Abby. He didn't want to rape her. I think that was all Ferrell."
"Ferrell?" Ziva questioned.
Tim nodded, "Jack's real name. You guys didn't know that yet?.. I thought I mentioned it. Ferrell Landry. Anyway, John wasn't smart like Ferrell was a-"
"Tim!" Gibbs exclaimed, trying to get him to stop.
"We got a call yesterday morning. A man had been found in a hotel, about fifty miles from the cabins you and Abby were at. He had overdosed on pills. He wrote a suicide note… We think it's John."
Tim stared at Gibbs, "What did the note say?"
They had received a photo copy of the note, which Tony had printed out so they could read.
"It doesn't matter."
"What does it say!" Tim exclaimed, needing to see the note.
Gibbs took a deep breath, "Give it to him, DiNozzo."
Tony nodded, walked to his desk and picked up the paper, then handed it to Tim.
Tim read it to himself, knowing everyone else probably already knew what it said.
'Whoever gets this. I can't do it anymor. Ferrell was the only good thing in my life. He was my best friend. He tought me to read and write, but I still miss up sumtimes. We were diffrent on some things. I don't like to hurt women, but if he told me to I knew I had to do it. When we took Sarah, I didn't tuch her. I promise. I killed Tim's father. Ferrell didn't shoot him. I did. Ferrell just told me to. Tim's father tried to fight. He tried to pertect his family, but he was gonna hurt Ferrell, so I killed him. The blood poured out of his head and he kept makin funny sounds, then we left. Ferrell and me both killed the cops pertecting the house. Ferrell wants to be famous. Thats all he wanted. Please make him famous. Thank you. Goodbye.'
"Is he okay?"
"Maybe he should go to the hospital."
"I believe he is in shock, Anthony."
"McGee, give me the letter. Let go of it. Come on, McGee."
"He is not letting go. He should not have read it."
"He would have found a way to get to it eventually, Ziva. If he didn't read it here, he would have read it by himself somewhere."
"Timothy. Timothy, can you hear me, lad?"
Tim blinked a few times, coming out of his trance. He looked up. Ducky, Tony, Gibbs, Ziva and Abby were all standing over him. Sometime, he guessed while he was reading the letter, someone had pulled a chair into the middle of the bullpen for him to sit down.
"We were worried about you," Ducky said, a small smile appearing on his face, "Good to have you back with us."
"You almost passed out," Tony answered, "Had to get you sittin' down really quick."
Gibbs held out his hand, "Give me the letter, Tim."
Tim looked down and noticed the letter in his hand. He had forgotten it was there. His knuckles were white he was holding it so tight.
He slowly released the grip he had on it and handed it to Gibbs, "I'm sorry."
"Don't be sorry."
It was silent for a moment. No one knowing what to say.
"I want to see him," Tim said, breaking the silence.
"Who?" Ducky asked.
"John. I want to see his body. Someone has to make sure it's him, right? I can do that."
"Tim, that's not a good idea," Tony said.
"Please, I need to see him."
"Let's go," Gibbs replied, "He's down in autopsy."
Neither Tim or Abby expected that. Abby had heard about them finding John, and about the letter, but she didn't know where the body was.
"Gibbs, are you sure about this?" Ziva asked.
"He won't get closure until he sees for himself that this is over," Gibbs whispered back to her.
"He's down in our autopsy?" Tim questioned.
Gibbs nodded, "Yup," He replied, then turned and headed for the elevator.
They all went down to autopsy together. Tim told them that they didn't all need to go along, but they all refused to stay behind. They were a team. This would no doubt be hard on Tim, and they weren't going to leave him.
On the last table laid a fully covered body. Ducky went over to it first, the rest of the team following behind.
"Are you sure about this, Timothy? Abigail can confirm it for us if you-"
"I want to do this, Ducky," Tim replied calmly.
Ducky nodded and pulled back the sheet.
Tim let in a deep breath. He leaned heavily onto his crutches. It's almost as though he could feel the beating happening all over again.
Suddenly he felt an hand on his arm, then another on this other arm. He looked both ways. Tony was standing on one side of him, and Abby on the other. The rest of the team also very close by.
Tim looked back at the body, "That's him."
Ducky nodded and covered John back up.
Tim looked at Ducky, "Where's Ferrell?" He asked.
Ducky glanced at Gibbs, who gave him a slight nod, "He's in drawer twelve."
Tim began walking over to the drawer.
Tony and Ziva both gave Gibbs a "Isn't this a horrible idea?" look, but he just shook his head. He knew this is what Tim needed to do.
Tim unlocked the drawer and slowly pulled it open.
He only opened it halfway. Enough to see Ferrell's face and torso.
Tim stared at Ferrell's neck. He knew he had made those marks, but it all seemed a big blur.
It was over. It was truly over. The past six months of complete hell had come to an end.
Tim had held in is emotions with seeing John, but now seeing Ferrell, the main one to cause all the pain, he couldn't hold it in any longer.
Tears started falling down his face as he began to cry.
Abby went over to him and once again touched his arm to let him know she was there. He turned to her and wrapped his arms around her, "It's over, Abby," He whispered through short breaths.
"Let it out, Timmy," She whispered back, knowing he needed that release.
"I can't… believe… it's over."
Tim sat down on a bench outside of NCIS. It had been a few hours since his breakdown in front of everyone. He expected Tony to make a little joke afterwards, but none was ever made… Gibbs probably would have killed anyone who even thought of making a joke about it.
He hadn't really worked all day. He mainly sat at his desk doing random, and probably unnecessary, paperwork.
Now, he needed a break. Just some time to think.
He sat by himself for about five minutes before someone sat down beside him.
He looked over to see who it was, "Hey, Boss."
"Did you need me back inside?"
Gibbs shook his head, "No. Just takin' a break myself."
They sat in silence for over a minute, then Tim spoke up, "He was in a car accident… That's how my dad lost his leg."
Gibbs had forgotten he had asked about that so long ago. "Drunk driver?"
"Yeah… my dad."
Tim and Gibbs looked over at each other at the same time. Tim could tell Gibbs didn't understand, so he explained, "My dad had a lot of problems after coming back from war. Nightmares all the time. He'd go through spells of not speaking to any of us. He'd go off to himself, get drunk, and pass out somewhere. One day, while I was at MIT, I got a call from my mom. She was going crazy. Telling me that Dad had been in a wreck and he was drunk… somewhere in there she inserted the fact that he flew through the windshield, then the car rolled and landed on his leg, crushing it. It had to be amputated. The next year was really tough… But that crash saved my parents marriage, my relationship with my dad, and Sarah's too. The person in the other car was unharmed and didn't press charges. He figured that my dad had learned his lesson the hard way anyways… My dad always said that losing his leg was the best thing that happened to him. It brought him back to the real world."
"He seemed like a very good man, Tim."
"Have you talked to Carol and Sarah lately?" Gibbs asked.
Tim nodded, "Yeah, I'm going to see them tonight… Then we leave in a couple of days to go to Oregon to… to have my dad's funeral."
"…And after that?" Gibbs asked. He never forgot Tim saying that once the case was over, he was leaving.
Tim shook his head, "I don't know. I've probably lost my job here, after all I did with hiding evidence and everything else, so-"
"Hey. You've always got a job here, McGee. If you still want to work here, then you work here."
Tim gave Gibbs a little smile, "Thanks, Boss."
Gibbs nodded once.
"Did you see the news? I caught a little bit of it at lunch."
"They were talking about the case... You want to know what they called Ferrell?"
"The 'Unknown Male'," Tim laughed, "All he wanted was to be famous... He'll never get that now."
Gibbs smiled... He didn't see the need to tell Tim that he was the one who threatened anyone who dared used that man's name.
They both stared out, watching the people pass by on the sidewalk, laughing, talking, arguing.
After a couple of minutes, Tim looked back over at Gibbs, "Boss?"
"Do you think… Do you think I'll ever be the same person I was, before all of this happened."
Gibbs took a deep breath. He reached over and laid a hand on Tim's shoulder, squeezing it lightly, "No… No, I don't."
Tim sighed and nodded, "Yeah… I don't either."
THE END! Woot! Sorry about the lack of warning, but I didn't know it was the last chapter until I finished writing it haha
Thank you guys so much for reading and reviewing! It means the world to me! Also, thanks for sticking it out through 37 chapters :) You guys rock!
Me, being the sick, helpless person I am, have already started writing my next story. I'm posting Triangle already, but the other one I'm writing is far more angsty. Of course, it deals with Tim. What else is new, right? I already have the name picked out for it and hopefully I can start posting soon. It'll be called Accused, so keep a lookout for it if you aren't subscribed to me.
Thanks again! God bless!