(Two months later)
Startled, Tony turned around to see that Vance had snuck up on him and was standing right behind him. Damn it. He usually wasn't so unaware of his surroundings. But he covered it by nodding calmly. "Yes, Sir. Your new MCRT is ready to get rolling as of tomorrow morning."
Vance looked around the bullpen and Tony followed his glance, still mostly in awe but also damn proud about how the preparations for his new team had come together so quickly. As suggested by Gibbs, when Vance and SecNav had approached him to offer him the free leader spot on Ida Lopez' team, he had politely refused and waited to see their reaction. Much to his surprise, instead of telling him that Ida's position was all they could offer him and if that wasn't enough, well, tant pis as the French said, SecNav asked him what it'd take to keep him with NCIS. So he'd laid out his thoughts about NCIS needing a second MCRT, without much hope. But not only had they listened, no, one long glance between SecNav and Vance and then SecNav had said "Good idea." and just like that, NCIS had gotten an additional MCRT and he a carte blanche to form his very own team.
If there hadn't been some quid pro quo included, he'd have thought this was a joke. Or a dream. One of the cons was SecDef's desire to keep him as leader of the task force against Balance. He hadn't fought much against that. Once he started something he wanted to see it through to the end and he and Balance, especially Tommyboy, still had some unfinished business to close. Namely the complete destruction of Balance and Tommyboy and his Circle of Five behind bars. Or dead. He didn't care, as long as he was the one to close the handcuffs or pull the trigger, at least with Tom.
No one hurt his people and got away with it.
His only condition for SecDef had been that he'd get to work in the field alongside heading the task force. He knew he wouldn't have much time for working regular cases, but he needed the diversion and action to save him from the effects of having mountains of paperwork and days spent in meetings, MTAC or one office or another. It was going to be hell on his hours and sleep, but he hoped he could handle it. Though the sooner his task force finished Balance the better.
The second big con though was another matter altogether. He'd refused it flat, prepared to walk away. Only Gibbs kicking his ass and more or less blackmailing him pushed him to accept the stipulation for him getting his own team and free choosing of his agents. He still thought it was too high a price and bound to lead to tensions or even downright conflict between him and the other teamleaders or him and Vance. Worse of all, it threatened to cause friction between him and Gibbs.
It was already strange enough to not be a member of Gibbs' team anymore, he really didn't want even more things to come between them. Gibbs of course hadn't been worried. As it was, his soon-to-be-former - damn, how long was it going to take to get used to that thought? - boss had been awfully at ease with all the changes happening to his team. It kind of worried him. Gibbs just wasn't the laid back type, but ever since their talk in the hospital room he'd been just that. At least with him. Fornell and Ducky didn't worry though that it was because the bullets had done more damage than anticipated. According to them, as he no longer worked for Gibbs anymore but alongside him as a fellow team leader and friend, it was perfectly normal and he'd better get used to it.
He didn't trust it, still waiting for the second b to come back around to headslap him. It was bound to happen after all, wasn't it? Once they were both back in the saddle, working cases, things had got to go back to normal, right?
He guessed he'd find out soon enough. Gibbs had been on medical leave for six of the prescribed ten weeks, having come back to desk duty two weeks ago. Ducky had cleared him to go back to fieldwork as of tomorrow.
His own team was taking up its work tomorrow as well. It was crazy to think that within eight weeks, they'd assembled a team out of nothing, a team that was going to thrive if he had any say in that and oh, look, he had! They were going to steal that closure record right out from under Gibbs' nose. Not this year, not with him having to spend so much time on the task force, but in a year or two, it was going to be his.
So here they were, in his brand new bullpen. He hadn't had to move far. Also requested by him and Gibbs and granted, his team could set up where EJ's had been - right alongside his old team. And he'd decided to mirror Gibbs' desk configuration, as a further symbolic sign that while they for sure would engage in some harsh but friendly competition, they were no competition to each other, but in fact backing up and complementing each other. It didn't matter if you got Team Gibbs or Team DiNozzo, as they'd both work with the same thorough dedication, giving the case and the victims their everything. It was probably crazy to put so much meaning in a desk arrangement, but it still felt right when he moved his stuff to his new desk, right beside Gibbs'. It gave him a great view of what came in from the front. Admittedly, it left his back open. But that was okay. Gibbs would have it, even with that new halfway wall between them. And McGee had chosen the desk right across from him, having his back as well.
McGee. The biggest surprise of it all had been when Tim had decided to join his team as SFA instead of Gibbs'. He'd been so sure Tim would pick Gibbs. Why shouldn't he? Gibbs was NCIS best agent and a legend, inspiring them all - as long as you didn't have to work for him. Once you did, it was proved whether you were just a blender or a true follower. McGee had passed the tests and ordeals with flying colors and brought the worship of the Legend Gibbs to a whole new level by writing his tales of one Agent LJ Tibbs. But he'd still chosen to join his new team, seemingly totally unsurprised by the news they had for him. Without having to even think about it either. Shortly after Gibbs had been released from the hospital and he'd gotten the green light to start assembling his team, when he and Gibbs had invited McGee for a steak and beer over to Gibbs' home, to lay it out to Tim and let him decide, McGee had only looked between them for a moment before he'd addressed Gibbs.
"Boss, it's been such an honor to be part of your team and learn so much from you. But Tony's my partner and I want to join his team."
And that had been that. He still had a hard time believing it, but he sure was happy as you couldn't get a better man as SFA than Tim. Well, at least now that he wasn't available anymore. Together, they had decided on the two agents to complete their team. After all, Tim had been out in the field with all the new probies and while he had some ideas after reading and re-reading their files and their report on their mission in New York, he wanted to hear Tim's opinion just like Gibbs had relied on his thoughts when they'd had to add new team members. To his amusement, McGee had numbered his probies and it had kind of stuck with him too. They had both immediately agreed on Probie 4, the widowed ex-marine with twin boys at home. He had wanted en ex-soldier on the team who could relate with first-hand experience of the lives their suspects and victims led, and an explosives expert was always good to have at hand, especially if Balance planned to keep planting bombs. Also, his responsibilities at home would hopefully let Tony keep in mind that there existed a world outside work and his team members had a right to have time to actually enjoy a private life, as had he.
And Tim had wanted the dry humor and calmness he brought to the team, which they would sure need to balance out the fiery and lively Probie 3. She hadn't been on his list, all the lawyer rules and the disaster with his last probie from legal making him give her no real consideration. But Tim had insisted that Natalia Lupo, daughter of a Russian ballet dancer and Cuban exile rebel was nothing like a normal lawyer, good at following orders and listening, but definitely bringing some fire and action to the team. That, combined with her language and combat skills had convinced him to give her a shot. Besides, it couldn't hurt to have someone on the team who spoke the language of lawyers, as he had noticed when Michelle had been on the team. It simplified dealing with the legal department and he'd gotten his warrants faster. And again, she had majored in international law and with her multi-national background she could be of great help in the fight against Balance.
Gibbs had decided on trying it out with Probie 2, the ex-Metro-cop and complete opposite of him. Which was why it might just work. He didn't know him well, never having worked a case with him, but he'd worked and was friends with some of his co-workers and they had assured him that while he had no sense of humor at all, Matt Feller had been a good cop, dedicated to his work. Time would tell. Ned Dorneget had finally made the last spot on Gibbs' team and Tony was sure he'd make it just fine, though Gibbs and Ziva would have their hands full to show him the ropes and toughen him up to help him become the agent they all knew he could be. It was worth it. McGee too had been a handful to train but here he was, his partner and second.
The A-Team and the Fantastic Four, ready to rock 'n roll and kick some serious ass.
Ripped out of his thoughts, Tony looked up with a blink. Right. The sneaking director - his boss now, he reminded himself - was still there. Frankly said, he still wasn't sure how to work with him, act and deal around him. The dynamics between them had never been great to start with and now, after SecDef and SecNav had practically forced Vance to promote him, he doubted working with him was going to be easy. But the higher ups expected them to work together, become partners and together lead NCIS.
Vance pushed his hands into his pockets. "SecNav wants to see us day after tomorrow for lunch. Actually, he wanted it to be tomorrow, but I convinced him that as it was your first day with your new team, it'd be for the best to let you work on building it."
"Thank you." He was thankful. Their first day, if work allowed it, he really wanted the whole team to go eat together. Unfortunately, he had a hard time believing that Vance had deferred SecNav out of the goodness of his heart.
As it was, Vance shrugged. "I figured you'll need all the opportunity you can get. As the task force leader against Balance you won't have much time to work on building your team. And let's not forget that as my new Assistant Director, you will have even less time for your team."
Slowly, Tony leaned back, meeting Vance's eyes. "Which is why I said no way when you and SecNav told me that in order to get my team, I'd have to accept the AD position. I never wanted that." He didn't. It would maybe be good for his career, but moving up the ladder had never been his main goal in life. He admitted it had its perks but all the politics it involved and boring meetings he'd have to attend made him sick. Not to mention the mountains of paperwork and uncomfortable decisions the job description entailed. Most of all though, it forced him to have to work closely with Vance who may or may not think he was out to get his job. No thank you! The worst of it though was that it made him Gibbs' boss. Kind of. And only an insane person would want to be the one to tell Gibbs what to do - or not to do.
But Gibbs had shrugged it off as if it was nothing, telling him if he didn't accept it, he'd be a foolish coward and he didn't eat steaks and drink beer with cowards. So what choice did he have? He accepted the condition.
And was pretty sure Vance was very disappointed that he hadn't turned out to be a foolish coward.
"Craig didn't cut it," Vance replied emotionlessly. "He's welcome to travel around the world, visit all our offices personally and serve as ambassador for NCIS, keeping our agents abroad happy and tightening our relations with other foreign agencies and governments. But as the events with Balance have shown very clearly, we need someone right here on the Yard who can step in if necessary and take over operations." He held Tony's gaze, though still not giving him any sign of what he thought about finding himself with Tony as his second. "Which you did, despite it not being your place or duty and more than that, you excelled at it."
"I don't want your job," Tony said quietly, wanting it to be clear. Maybe it helped them figure out a way to make this work.
To his surprise, Vance smiled. "I know. If you did, I'd have fought SecNav tooth and nail to prevent this from happening."
Tony frowned. "Then why ..."
"I'm not threatened by you, DiNozzo," Vance interrupted him, giving him a long look. "Surprised maybe, and having some concerns, which is hardly surprising given your act so far. But you're a good agent, I realized that already a while ago and as the past weeks showed, you are also an astoundingly good politician. And a leader; that much is clear now as well."
Tony's frown deepened. "Am I supposed to apologize now? I wanted nothing of all this!"
In a flash, Vance had his hands on his desk and was leaning over it, glaring harshly at him. "Exactly! And that's what concerns me. To do this job, you need to want it and that's why I'm not sure I can trust you."
What? Just because he was no career blind jerk he was untrustworthy? What kind of logic was that?
"He wants it."
Startled, they both turned back around. Gibbs was leaning over the bullpen wall behind him, his posture at ease, his eyes though glaring at Vance. "Ease up and give him time to get used to it, Leon," he warned the director coolly, before his eyes locked on Tony. "You're late, DiNozzo. Time to go."
Tony made a face, choosing to ignore what the hell Gibbs and Vance were talking about and kept his ass where it was. "Actually, I ..."
"Are going. Move it, before I move it for you," Gibbs told him, staring him down.
Back to frowning, Tony narrowed his own eyes. "You ..."
An all too familiar firm slap to the back of his head stopped him right there. "Am still your boss, at least until midnight. And I say. You. Are. Going. Now!"
Desperately, he looked to Vance for help. Ha? Fat chance there. Sure enough, Vance held up his hands. "All yours, Gibbs. Just bring him back at Midnight." With a smirk in his direction, he left.
So much for teamwork. Turning back, he saw Gibbs smirking as well. "Come on, Cinderella. Your coach awaits you."
Any other time, he would have enjoyed the joke. Movie reference even and that coming from Gibbs. But he wasn't in the mood. He did get up though. "I don't see why I need to go. This is just a waste of time and I have still a ton of stuff to do before tomorrow."
Waiting patiently until Tony had gathered his badge and gear, Gibbs came around. "No, you don't. You've read the personnel files forwards, backwards and then over and over again. You've selected the cold cases you want to work should no active case come in. You've rehearsed your kick-off speech a hundred times over. You've gone over your training schedule so many times even I know it by heart by now. You've done all the preparation you practically could. Now stop, relax and enjoy your last evening unburdened by the responsibility this job brings. And go get your award."
Taking his tuxedo jacket, he slipped it on, straightening it, before he took something black out of his pocket with another grimace. He was no big fan of bow ties, but apparently, dress code at the White House mandated it. You either showed up in your gala uniform, which he didn't have anymore, since leaving the force, and boy, did he regret that at this moment, or you wore a tuxedo. With a bow tie. Ugh.
Stepping up, Gibbs swatted his fumbling hands away, took the bow out of his hands and started to work. Letting his arms fall, Tony stood still. "Why do I have to go? You never go to your ceremonies."
Gibbs briefly looked up from tying his bow. "I don't get them awarded in the White House. By the President of the United States. And I didn't save millions of people to get it in the first place."
Looking down, Tony clenched his fingers. "I don't think Agent Matthews and Agent Perth would agree. Or Agent Blye. Or Director Trummer. Or the other five cops that died under my watch."
Pulling at the bow ends in order to straighten them, Gibbs' eyes flickered up to him. "You did what you had to do. What you could do."
His eyes still downcast, he shook his head. "Doesn't feel like it. And it feels even more wrong to go get an award when I failed to save them. Worse, I get it for sending them straight into their deaths."
Finished with the bow, that now sat perfectly, instead of stepping back, Gibbs moved his right hand up to put it on the back of his neck. "It's a war. People die in a war. You can't save everyone, Tony, you know that. And sometimes, you give an order and people die. Not because it's your fault but because that's how war is. Take what you can, DiNozzo. You did good. Very good. You do deserve this medal. But if you can't accept it for your deeds, then at least go and accept it in the name of those who can't. Because it's been their fight too and they deserve to be remembered and honored."
It still felt wrong to Tony, but Gibbs' words undeniably made sense too. Slowly lifting his eyes, he looked into those of his boss and nodded slowly. Then he shifted slightly. "Gibbs - Thanks. For being here. For going to this insane thing with me."
With one of the corners of his mouth lifting, Gibbs patted, almost stroked the back of his head and stepped back. "Wouldn't miss it for the world."
It was said matter-of-factly, as if it wasn't worth mentioning. To him it probably wasn't. But to Tony it meant everything. He was there, unlike someone else. His father hadn't shown up, which was nothing new. Though he was kind of surprised, having thought - and worried – that the chance to get into the White House and meet the President might make him come for once after all. But no, he had politely declined, claiming he had something else to attend. It was probably for the best. Most likely he wouldn't have passed the security check anyway. Still. It stung. But not as much as it used to be and that was all thanks to the man in front of him, who had been there for the past twelve years, always. Well, with one exception but he didn't hold that one against him. Losing your memory, as he knew well now, was a scary thing and he had lost only some hours, not entire years.
"I know. And as I said, thank you," Tony couldn't help but emphasize. But before it got too cheesy, he straightened, nervously stroking over the smooth silk front of his jacket. Readying himself. The people in the West Wing thought it a good symbolic sign if instead of a small, short ceremony in the Oval Office they made a big gala thing out of it. Everyone of the task force would be there, his team too. And Gibbs, who'd stand beside him in the place reserved for family when they were going to give him the stupid medal. In front of a few dozens TV cameras from around the world. It wasn't his thing, but he had little choice in the matter. He'd make the best of it, drawing strength from his people being there for him. And use it as another slap in the face for Balance. Slowly, he forced himself to relax. Met Gibbs' eyes. "Okay. Let's go."
"This is a disaster."
Twirling his knife in his hand, Tom didn't pause or answer, his eyes following the ceremony being broadcast live around the world. Or rather, following every movement of the guest of honor. He had recovered well from their fight, it seemed. Nothing like when he'd given that press conference right afterwards.
"You should have killed him when you had the chance."
Eyes still fixed on DiNozzo, Tom shrugged. He'd heard that criticism a lot in the past two months. He gave the answer he always gave. "I left him unconscious on a ticking bomb, after I beat the hell out of him and cracked his skull. He shouldn't still be alive."
"You should have shot him. Or broke his neck."
Maybe. Probably. But DiNozzo had surprised him and Tom wasn't easily surprised. Not just by apparently not dying when he was supposed to - but by the way this apparent nobody crossed every one of their plans in the US and some in the other target countries as well. Most of all though he hadn't expected him to come so close to catching him. Killing him even, with the very knife he held in his hand. Thanks to his CIPA syndrome he hadn't felt it, nor the bullet in his leg. Not until he passed out from blood loss, thankfully after he'd gotten away and to safety. But it had been close, closer than ever before in his life.
Other people usually felt threatened by such a close call. Not him. He'd been exhilarated by it. After a life spent not feeling any pain, he'd finally had at least a taste of death. Thanks to DiNozzo. Yeah, he could have killed him when he'd laid unconscious in front of him. He should have, Raina and the others were right about that. But after that fight, and not just the one he'd just barely won, DiNozzo deserved better than that.
"We'll get him." It was a promise, one he meant with every fiber of his unfeeling body. DiNozzo was going to die, in a fair, honorable way, just like he'd want to. And if he could help it - and he could - he was going to die by his hand.
"We better. The others expect us to clean up this mess. And they want us to move up phase two."
Good. They needed to show the US government that this war wasn't over by a long shot. That their arrogance had a price that was long overdue for them to pay. And on the personal side, he couldn't wait to mess himself with DiNozzo again. This time, he was going to be prepared. The last weeks he'd been recuperating from the almost mortal wounds DiNozzo had inflicted on him he'd spent collecting and studying evreything he could find on his enemy.
His eyes fell back onto the knife he was playing with, stroking over the sharp edge. Blood welled up on his finger and staring at it fascinated for a moment, he finally lifted the finger to his mouth to suck at it, his gaze still stroking almost lovingly over the shiny blade. DiNozzo had loved this knife, he could tell by the smoothness of the handle and sharpness of the blade. Not to mention the inscription on it, implying that it probably had been a gift. Most likely from someone that meant a lot to DiNozzo. His bet was on the man's boss. DiNozzo had seemed quite upset about his shooting. Now he saw the same man standing beside him like a proud father as the President pinned the Medal of Valor on his chest.
Rule 9 - Semper Fi
Oh yeah, this knife for sure had been a gift from the boss, the former marine as his file had told him. A father figure apparently. Having read a bit on DiNozzo's past and his real father that didn't surprise Tom much. He could relate to that, his own childhood had lacked considerably as well.
His finger stroked over the inscription, a cruel smile twitching up the corners of his mouth as he envisioned the way he was going to give DiNozzo his knife back. He could almost feel the warm blood spilling over his hands already. It was going to be the perfect way for DiNozzo to pay for crossing their plans and killing so many of them, some of them his friends since forever. Oh yeah, killing him with this very knife was going to be a pleasure to him but also, kind of a poetic justice.
Tony stared at the blue and gold star, stroking over the cool metal. He didn't know what to do with this damn thing. He'd thought about closing it away in his drawer with the rest of his and Gibbs' awards. But that didn't feel right. Gibbs was right. This medal may have been given to him but it really honored all the people who had fought so hard to keep Balance from winning, saving millions of people. Giving their lives to keep this country safe. They deserved better than to be discarded into a dark, forgotten drawer.
He wasn't the type to display things like this either though so he really was stumped about what to do with it.
After shaking what felt like a hundred hands and having even more small talk, he'd fled the gala as soon as possible, with Gibbs driving the escape vehicle, probably even gladder than him to get away from the stiff formalities. He had offered him the opportunity to crash at his house but he had declined, wanting to be alone to deal with the many questions this evening had raised. And to prepare for the next day, getting his act together.
Or so he'd thought. But he hadn't been home for longer than ten minutes before he'd grabbed his car keys and stormed out. For a long while he'd just driven around, letting the cool wind calm his whirling thoughts. When he'd finally pulled to the curb, it hadn't been in front of his apartment building.
He hadn't consciously driven here, but it didn't surprise him much to have ended up here after all. Truth was, part of him always knew he'd end up here, ever since having seen her in that skintight white dress. Or rather since she'd dropped the bomb and told him that his life was hers.
Until now he'd avoided her and her words, burying himself in work. It hadn't been an excuse, exactly, but it had been convenient. The first three weeks had been filled with briefings, debriefings, interrogations of the still alive Balance members and a lot of other meetings. In the small amount of time he'd had left he had to lead NCIS until Vance came back from his medical leave. The next few weeks he'd spent on the road. Balance was a global threat and he was convinced that in order to destroy them, his task force had to work globally as well. Meaning, to work closely with other counter intelligence agencies and police forces. So he went on a crash tour around the world, hitting Africa, Asia, South America and as a last stop, Europe. First to Brussels to speak to the EU parliament and Europol, then London where he talked with Scotland Yard and MI6. It had been an exhausting but very successful tour. He came back with promises to join forces and share information in the fight against Balance.
Before he flew back from London, though, he took a few days off to go see some of his relatives from his mother's side. He hadn't known why, it wasn't as if he'd been close to any of them. But somehow he had felt the need to reconnect with his mother and meeting her relatives had seemed like a good way to achieve it. He wasn't sure if he managed to do that but it had helped him calm down a bit and take a step back to think about what he'd constantly pushed away ever since she had turned his world upside down.
The simple truth was that he didn't trust her, not with his heart. With his life in a heartbeat but she'd hurt him enough that he couldn't trust her with his heart as well. Problem was, he couldn't live with not giving it a shot anyway, because if he didn't, he'd always ask himself what could have been. And trust could be learned. Earned. So yeah, he was going to give her another chance after all. And himself.
But he'd still avoided her after coming back, or at least being alone with her. The two weeks had been filled with the preparations for his new team going on rotation and his finishing what he could before leaving the old one. Also, he'd given Ziva and McGee a crash course in being SFA on a MCRT team.
Now, it was past midnight though. He was no longer part of Gibbs' team. Therefore, he was no longer Ziva's partner anymore. Time to face his possible future.
As if the universe agreed, the sound of a key turning in the lock had him closing the velvet medal case and laying it on the table beside him.
She had to be tired - or drunk - because it took her twenty-two seconds to register someone being in the room, going for her weapon. Before she could shoot him, he turned on the table light beside him. For a long moment, she stared at him before she slowly let her hands fall. "Tony. What are you doing here?"
She sounded unsure, so unusual for her. Then again, she'd done a lot of things lately that weren't typical of her. Which gave him hope that maybe, just maybe, this might actually work.
He met her eyes, full of uncertainty, fear - and hope too. He nodded. "You and I - we still have to talk."
The End - For sure this time.
Author's Note: Yes, I'm serious. I'm ending it here. No joke, no second epilogue. It had always been clear to me that I wouldn't go further than this point with TIVA in this story, if at all. And to be honest, this is the end I've always envisioned and it still feels right. I hope you enjoyed the ride and have found some more answers. Yes, I know, there are still some things open. Intentionally. I think some things need to stay open, as long as the major threads have a closure and I believe that is so with this story.
Now, a lot of you guys asked me about a sequel. After having read the epilogue, you probably realized that it's very promising for just that. Hell, it's practically a sneak-peak to what may come in a sequel. Truth is, I'd love to write a sequel. This universe is so much fun and exploring it a bit further, especially how it works with the two teams and their leaders working hand in hand together, is very tempting. Also, as said, there are some threads left open that I really want to continue and adress again. So why am I telling you all this instead of just saying, hey, don't worry, keep looking, in the near future you'll get a story alert for the sequel? Because as much as I'd love to do that - one thing is still missing and I'm afraid, it's the most important one. Yes, I know what need to be in that sequel, but unfortunately, I don't have a plot yet that will lead us to all these thing that I want to tell. And I've been thinking a lot on that. So I won't make any promises at this point - but know that last night I had an idea that just might work, but I really can't say it yet and it is also a lot vague still. But it's hope and after this ending, you deserve at least as much.
Which leads me to once again thank you all for the mind blowing and wonderful reviews you left me time and time again, getting more fantastic with each chapter. Be assured that your reviews helped in getting this story to the point it had gotten because they made me try even a little bit harder to do it - and your expectations - justice. I'll try to answer as much reviews as I can to personally thank you, but just so everyone of you knows it,me specially those who leave one without logging in, I love and appreciate every single word!
Last but not least, again a heartfelt thank you and bow to the wonderful scousemuz1k, who made it possible that you all can read through this smoothly and saved you from some phrases that are more German than English really and gave me hints when I got something wrong or at least not quite right. Thank you!
Again a long note, I know, but damn, after a year, 253 (!) pages and almost 120'000 words I deserved that. Thank you all for being on this story's journey and I hope you had as much fun reading this baby as I had writing it. I haven't told all my NCIS stories yet, actually, right now it feels as if I only just started. A short story is already in the pipeline, I have a few other longer stories I've been working on who were put on ice though in favor for finishing SI and as said, one of these days, there might even be a sequel to this baby. So while this is finished, I hope I'll meet at least some of you in another story again.
Merci and auf Wiedersehen!