Dis: Not mine. Sooo wish etc…

Summary: Continuing my S9 Nature of the Beast Obsession. This intersects right between my prequel 'How they all found out' and my epilogue 'Lucky'. This is the CASE bit of the episode that was missing. Featuring the team! (SPOLIERS for season 9)

"Boss, thought you were at the hospital?" McGee spoke before he could think better of it.

He left the witness he'd been interviewing and fell into step with his boss when Gibbs ducked under the crime scene tape.

"I was."

McGee caught the evidence bag Gibbs thrust at him, clasping it in both hands against his chest.

"Bullet from Tony's vest?"

"How's Tony?" Ziva pounced the minute she saw Gibbs.

McGee listened in as he wrote chain of evidence on the baggy and slipped it into his pocket.

"Unconscious." He heard Gibbs reply. "Ducky's with him."

McGee looked up sharply at the weary tone. It didn't take a very special agent to hear what wasn't being said. Gibbs was worried. If Gibbs was worried things were far worse with Tony than any of them could imagine.

"Anything we can do boss?" McGee wanted to fill the cold stony silence that lasted far longer than was comfortable.

For his trouble McGee got a glare in return and gave himself a mental head slap. His job was the best thing he could do right now. Find out the answers to the many questions that had been unanswered over the last couple of months. Tony's assignment. That was what had led them here, to investigate the shooting of one of their own.

Gibbs turned away from him and stared at the spot, outlined in chalk by the LEO's of the position Tony had been found. McGee was just glad they weren't looking at his body, but somehow he thought Gibbs was imagining just that.

"Tony was found lying face down. Gun drawn. One bullet to the chest. We've recovered the shell casing." McGee recited the information as calmly as he could.

Gibbs said nothing and moved on to the look at the rest of the scene. McGee shared a concerned look with Ziva before following. McGee saw Gibbs' gaze settle on a patch of blood on the ground that had already been marked.

"There a body?"

"Not yet." McGee swallowed. "But by the amount…" He fell silent.

It made very little sense. If Tony had got a shot in before he was hit then the body should still be here.

"We found two more shell casings." Ziva broke into his thinking, pointing at the other two marks in the alleyway.

McGee studied Gibbs as he stood and looked around at the dark, secluded alley. Fear, loss, concern. He saw all these emotions cross his bosses face and in that instance felt an irrational annoyance build up within him. McGee didn't often get angry, not in the 'I want to punch someone' sense, but it seemed this was a special occasion. Only the one he wanted to punch was Tony. Gibbs looked broken and it was all Tony's fault.

"He was following orders Tim." Gibbs spoke the words without breaking from his contemplation of the scene. "I'm heading back to the hospital." He walked away before McGee could ask how in hell he'd known what he was thinking.

"I'll call as soon as we have anything boss." McGee threw out to his retreating back.

When he turned around, anger at Tony forgotten and shocked expression still in place Ziva was smiling at him.

"As Tony would say" she shrugged, "he's Gibbs."