Half a Moment by DD Agent

I do not own NCIS or any of its characters, or its settings - all belongs to the lovely folks at CBS.

I wrote this initially before the 200th episode but didn't have time to post it. I've since updated it to match what was in the episode. Here's hoping this is the first of many new fics - my muse has come back. So yay!

I hope you enjoy this ficlet.

He was sleeping off a gunshot wound. Only he could sleep off being shot in the shoulder. But there he was, the occasional nurse fussing round him as he slept, filling his requirement to actually visit a hospital after taking a bullet to a body part. The heart monitor beeped around them, proof of how strong his heart was. But that was just a muscle. His soul was broken. She could see that in his face.

"We need to go, come on. Come on!"

"One more minute," she hissed back, determined not to let her companion ruin this moment.

She stroked his face, running her fingers over the weathered lines and soft lips. She had dreamt of that face. She had thought of this moment for nearly four years and now, like life, it was not how she had imagined.

Red curls brushed over tears as she leant forward and pressed her soft lips against his: the goodbye kiss they had never got to share.

"I love you."

Then they were gone, like dust in a breeze.


His shoulder hurt, but he wouldn't let anyone know that. He didn't want to spend any more time in this hospital bed than he had to. But his shoulder didn't matter, his mind felt clear. It felt almost like he had been righted after twenty years on the wrong path. He felt good, felt like things were finally slotting into place. He had a place; he had a life to live. He had friends who loved him, family who always would. He wasn't done yet.

"I love you."

Shannon. Their love was a powerful but tragic one. It seemed that no matter what choice they had made, one of them would have been left without the other. But he was alive; he needed to start realising that. Needed to start enjoying things now he felt at peace for the first time in…it wasn't twenty years; there was a number before that. A few years where he had felt at peace.

The nurse came in to check on him, and he answered some routine questions. He thought about his last dream, he and Shannon had been kissing. He placed his fingers up to his mouth, thinking about her lips. When they moved away from his face, he saw that there was lipstick there. Real, honest to God lipstick on his mouth.

"We need to go, come on. Come on!"

Time. The number. What was that number?

"One more minute."

Thirteen years ago.

"I love you."