Author'sNote: If you know and love the Frank Capra classic It'saWonderfulLife, then I apologise in advance because I am going to do terrible things to a fabulous story...
High, high above the earth, almost beyond the stars…almost, light pulsated as the heavens heard the cry of a soul in anguish.
"You sent for me Gabriel?"
"I did indeed; there is a human being in the depths of despair, he is about to surrender his life."
"How could he? Why don't humans understand that they are in possession of the greatest gift; life itself? If they only knew how precious life is…."
"Your own life was ended before the allotted three score and ten years."
"But it brought me here to you; I can't regret such an outcome."
"Well said; you have worked your way to your current status in a remarkably short time Caitlyn. One more step and you will gain your wings."
"So soon? I had been told the process could take many human lifetimes."
"That is true, but you have demonstrated remarkable aptitude for the role, a true calling."
"It is an incredible opportunity…to help others, being a guardian angel has been truly awe inspiring."
"You have guided many humans; and their prayers of thanks have assisted you in your ascent through the ranks of angels…however, this new assignment…"
"A human being ready to give up on life? Do you think I am capable of bringing him back from the brink?"
"We do; you are in a particularly advantageous position with regard to this human."
Another light shone brighter, and Caitlyn saw him, lying motionless on the cold ground, the snow falling heavily from a leaden sky. It took her a moment to recognise him; he had changed so much since that fateful day in Norfolk…
"Tim…is that Tim McGee?"
"But…you can't make mistakes I know, but Tim…he's the last person I would have expected…"
"The troubles of the human heart are not always visible to human eyes, or even to those of a fledgling angel. You have been chosen for this mission because of your past knowledge of this human. Can you help him Caitlyn, as you have helped so many others?"
She looked at the pale figure of her former team mate, and remembered his eagerness to learn, his courage in the face of new and terrifying experiences, not least of which was working with Gibbs, his tolerance of DiNozzo's hazing, and her own teasing…most of all she remembered his quiet fortitude as he went alone to autopsy to wish her a final farewell…"I can, I have to; his is too good a life to lose so soon, but Gabriel, tell me please, how did he come to this?"