"Let Agent DiNozzo go," Gibbs said, more calmly than he felt. He gun was pointed steadily at the man standing in front of him.

"I can't. He's vile. I know he's your friend Gibbs, but people like him, they shouldn't be working for NCIS,"

"Just - just let him go. You don't want to do this," Gibbs coaxed soothingly.

He could see Tony's strangled breaths around the arm that was around his throat. The wound on his temple from where the bastard had hit him was bleeding into his eyes and Gibbs didn't even want to think about what else had been done to Tony before he'd gotten there.

"No," The man hissed, his arm tightening around Tony's neck. "Gibbs, you need to leave. I don't want you to see this,"

"I'm not leaving without DiNozzo," Gibbs vowed and swallowed, keeping his eyes, and gun, on them.

"Don't you understand? He's a screw-up and he's going to get someone killed. Do you really want that on your conscience? That you had a hand in getting one of your friends killed by this scum?"

"He is one of my friends," Gibbs insisted, fingers tightening on his gun. If could only get a clear shot.

"That's why I'm asking you to leave Gibbs,"

The arm around Tony's throat tightened, cutting off his air with a weak gasp. Tony flinched when the safety being clicked off echoed in his ears. This wasn't how he wanted to go, especially in front of Gibbs.

"I am not leaving," Gibbs echoed, his voice firm. He kept one eye on Tony's paling face and the other on the man behind him.

Tony started to sag in the man's grasp, his lips turning blue as his air was cut off. Gibbs swallowed and adverted his attention back to the other agent.

"Let him go!" Gibbs ordered.

"No," The guy smirked.

The gunshot echoed through the room.

Both men fell to the ground, unmoving as more people poured into the room.

Gibbs was the first to kneel next to them. "DiNozzo! Damn it Tony, don't do this!" He shouted, shaking the other man, who wasn't breathing.

Gibbs took a shaky breath as he watched McGee kneel next to the fallen agent, realising that he didn't even know the other man's name. Pulling himself together, Gibbs looked back at Tony and wiped the blood from Tony's face before starting rescue breathing and praying that Tony would start breathing.

He had so much he still needed to tell the other man.

"Breathe damn it!" Gibbs order angrily before leaning down, and forcing air in to Tony's lungs. "C'mon DiNozzo!" It seemed like forever, even if he knew it was only a few second before Tony coughed, sucking in a lungful of air on his own.

"Boss?" Tony croaked, his voice raspy and harsh.

"You asshole," Gibbs tried to glare past the smile on his face. "You scared the shit outta me,"

"Tony?" A voice asked from behind them. Gibbs turned and saw Ziva standing in the doorway.

"I'm fine," Tony called out weakly as he turned enough to push himself up. He didn't utter a sound as his vision promptly grayed out at the change in altitude. He could feel Gibbs's arms underneath him, catching him before he could crack his head against the floor, he just couldn't find the energy to keep his eyes open any longer.

"DiNozzo!" Gibbs shouted but he was rewarded with the slight wave of Tony's hand. "McGee, where are the damn paramedics?"

"Gibbs, we need you outta here. You were involved in this," Vance said as he put a hand on Gibbs's shoulder. Gibbs started to protest but was cut off as Vance continued. "After the paramedics stabilise him, okay?"


Gibbs reluctantly let Ziva lead him from the room, knowing that McGee would keep an eye on Tony and everything that was going on.

He found Abby in the hall, nervously chewing on her bottom lip as they waited for news. "Ducky went to meet the paramedics," She said quietly.

Gibbs ignored her, punching the nearest wall instead as his anger, frustration and fear overwhelmed him.

"Gibbs?" she asked quietly as he pulled his hand away and wiped his bloody knuckles on his pants leg.

"Not now Abbs," He hissed and started pacing the hallway. He had almost lost Tony. His best friend and, if Gibbs was completely honest with himself, the man who was like a son to him. All because some stop rookie got it into his head that Tony was a disgrace to NCIS.

He stopped as Ducky and a team of paramedics came into his line of sight and disappeared into the room. Tony would be okay now; Ducky would make sure of it.

Ziva came back out a few minutes later, having followed Ducky back in. "He's alert and answering questions," She smiled. "But they're taking him in for x-rays,"

Gibbs breathed a deep sigh of relief, closing his eyes and letting his head drop. Some of the tension in his shoulders eased at the words. When he opened his eyes, the paramedics wheeled Tony past him on a gurney; the fallen officer following behind in a body bag.

"Gibbs," Vance said as he stepped back into the hallway. "We need you to go downstairs with us and give us your statement,"

"Fine just make it quick," Gibbs replied, slightly angry.

He could feel Abby and Ziva's gazes on him as he walked past them, following after Vance. The next half hour passed in a blur as he gave his statement and answered their questions, trying to clarify everything.

"It looks good here," Vance said. "We have to keep your gun, but it was a good shoot Gibbs,"

"Okay," He said automatically. He figured he shouldn't say, good shoot or not, he'd do the same all over again to save Tony.

Gibbs stood and walked through the building, in search of Ziva. He hadn't heard any additional information on Tony and was starting to get worried.

"He's fine," Ziva stated from behind him.

Gibbs nodded and started towards his desk.


He arrived outside the exam room he'd been pointed to in time to hear Tony's irritated, hoarse growl that he didn't need to be admitted.

"I'm fine. Just let me go home and sleep it off,"

"You're not fine Agent DiNozzo," The doctor said calmly.

"I'm fine," Tony repeated his voice raspy. "I just want to go home and get some sleep,"

"I can't let you go, especially since you live alone," The doctor turned and saw Gibbs standing there, shifting uncomfortably.

"I'm Agent Gibbs," Gibbs stated and looked over the doctor's shoulder and offered Tony a soft smile.

"He'll stay with me," Tony told the doctor. "I won't be alone and you can release me,"

"You have a concussion, bruised ribs, were nearly - "

"I'll stay with him," Gibbs interrupted. "You can give me directions an' anything you want for his care,"

The doctor sighed. "Fine. I'll go get the paperwork,"

"Thanks," Tony said, giving his boss a small smile when they were alone, before his gaze dropped. "Look, I didn't mean to drag you into this. I'll be fine; I just need someone to get me out of here. I'm sure you have better things to do than babysit me," He said in a rush.

"DiNozzo, I...look, I..." Gibbs swallowed. "I want to stay with you. I'm on leave right now cause of the shooting and I've got nothing to do but sit at home and stare at the walls," Gibbs grinned. "It's not like we can go and play ball until that thick head of yours gets better,"

Tony laughed hoarsely. "Okay. But you might wanna bring a book. I plan on sleeping as soon as I can get my head on a pillow,"

"Only for an hour at a time," The doctor said, stepping back into the room and handing Gibbs a stack of papers. "Standard concussion rules apply. If your headache gets worse or there's any double-vision or blurriness, I want you back here,"

"Sure," Tony agreed. Gibbs snorted, not believing him for a second.

"Thank you. Someone will be here shortly with a wheelchair for you," With that, the doctor turned and left.

"I just wanted to go home," Tony pouted as a nurse came into the room with a wheelchair.

"Let's go, Agent DiNozzo," She turned to them with a fake smile and waited.

"How much of a pain in the ass were you?"Gibbs asked him.

The nurse frowned at him as she helped Tony into the chair. "Language," She rebuked.

"Right," He said.

"Is there a car waiting outside?"

"I'm parked just a few rows down,"

"Pull the car up, he's not walking that far,"

"I can do it," Tony said, his pout disappearing into a scowl.

"I'll go get the car," Gibbs grinned and walked out of the room.

He drove up to the front door several minutes later. Jumping out of the car, he helped Tony into the passenger seat before driving away from the hospital.

Thanks for reading guys. Anyway please review :)