Silently, Tony took it back from her and they looked at it together. "Yes, it does." Tony answered. He looked at Ziva. "According to this, Tony DiNozzo and Ziva David were married on December 28, 2012."
Ziva's eyes were as big as saucers. "Ziva, you and I are legally married."
Holy Cow! And now we can head into our next spoiler, which is one listed earlier on: "Alas, it may not be all fun ahead for the gorg' NCIS agent" Says Glasberg, "There will be a big sort of turn — an unexpected reveal — for Ziva about halfway through the season."
Sidebar: I skipped the above follow up to this to write about the spoiler that Tony finds "a childhood camera containing old film; Abby helps him develop the photos, which feature images of young Tony with his mom, who died when he was a kid." - Written as "Vignette Four"; and now, back to our Feature Presentation…
Vignette Five- Part One
Ziva continued to look at Tony, confused. Slowly, she walked over to the sofa and sat down, staring down at her hands. Tony followed her and sat down. "Ziva? Hey, don't worry. It will be ok. We'll figure this out."
Suddenly, Ziva started to cry, not a hard, sobbing cry, just softly in her hands that were now covering her face. Tony was taken aback by this reaction. "I didn't think the idea of us actually being married would upset you this much." Tony said stiffly, trying to keep the hurt out of his voice.
Ziva immediately looked up. "Tony, it is not that. It is not that at all." She gave him one of her tender smiles that always melted him. "It is just…this was not 'my' wedding. It was a made up one and I purposely chose everything so it would not be the same should it…"
"Should it be our real wedding?" Tony stroked her hair. Ziva looked deeply into Tony's eyes and leaned into his arms, which he obligingly wrapped around her.
"Well, I had no say about the wedding at all, but I can tell you this: when I said 'I will,' I meant it with all my heart; fake wedding or not."
Ziva kissed Tony lightly on the lips. "As did I. But we cannot be married after only just now deciding to move in together. It is…"
"Upside down, I know. Or ass-backward. Take your pick. The thing is Ziva, we are married, legally. We need to decide what to do. But not right now. Let's put this aside for a few days, then come back to it, when the shock has worn off."
Ziva nodded, reluctantly. Tony squeezed her shoulders. "Come on, let's get something to eat and talk about stupid things."
However, the day did come when they needed to talk about it. Two days later, Tony brought it up again. They were sitting in the living room, Tony channel surfing and Ziva reading a gun magazine. Reluctantly, Tony turned off the TV. Ziva looked up at him.
"Ziva, as much as I don't want to, I think we have to talk about our marriage. We have to decide what we need or better, want to do about this."
Ziva straightened up. "What do you mean?" Tony looked uncomfortable. "Well, we could get it annulled or get a divorce."
Ziva looked shocked at both suggestions. "You are not serious!"
Tony held her face between his hands. "I didn't say I wanted to do either of those things. I was brought up to believe that a marriage could only be annulled if it hadn't been consummated. I don't know if that is true or not, but we clearly consummated this marriage."
"As for divorce, between my Dad and Gibbs, I've had enough divorce to last me a lifetime. I don't ever want to get a divorce." Tony sighed. "But I guess that's what everyone thinks when they first get married."
Ziva listened closely. "In the past, a Hebrew man could just decide he didn't want to be married anymore and could divorce his wife. Things are not so simple any more, but...it is not something I would choose."
"So we are back to square one. What do we do?" Suddenly, Ziva started to chuckle. Tony looked at her like she had lost her mind.
"Can you imagine the look on Gibbs' face when we show up at work, thank everyone for their help and then say 'oh, by the way, we really are married?"
Tony had to admit it did sound pretty ludicrous. But then he thought about Gibbs. "Gibbs will kill us." He whispered, fear evident in his voice. Tony took a deep breath. "Ok, here is what I think we should do."
Ziva looked at him and waited. "You can say it, Tony. I am still sitting here."
Tony looked like he had just gone into another time zone and was jerked back. "Right. I think we should do nothing."
"Yeah, let things go on as usual. We just don't mention the legally married thing, until we have really had enough time to let this sink in and make an intelligent decision about how to handle this."
"You mean lie about this."
"Ziva, we've been lying for months about our relationship. Until Gibbs gave us the go-ahead, we'd still be lying. So don't go all high and mighty on me."
Ziva looked down. "You are right. I am sorry. 'Lie' was too strong a word and I did not mean to hurt you by saying that." She was quiet for a few minutes. "I agree. We should just go on as if everything was normal."
"Everyone knows we are together and living together. We just cannot wear the wedding bands, which we have already given back anyway."
Tony felt a slight pang of regret, knowing how much he loved seeing those rings on Ziva's finger. The one thing that brightened his thoughts was that he already had a more beautiful ring ready and waiting.
January 29, 2013
Since they were legally married, Tony shared with Ziva what his father had given him of his mother's estate, keeping the jewelry hidden for later purposes. Much to his surprise, he discovered he owned an apartment in Manhattan, a beach house in Martha's Vineyard and a cottage on an Estate just outside of London. There were additional bank accounts, insurance policies and other legal documents that they both finally got too tired to go through.
Ziva was stunned by the wealth left to Tony by his mother. "Tony, this is overwhelming but is does not change how I feel about you. I don't want you to think that now that you have shared this with me, I will think differently of you."
"You are my Tony. I do not care about any of this, although it would be nice to spend some nights in New York or on the beach." She smiled.
Somehow, they had managed to make it through the most of January without letting it slip about the marriage snafu. Living together was proving to be an experiment, but they quickly fell into a routine so they weren't always bumping into each other.
They were careful to make sure they each had their own time and space, yet most of the time they together and so far loved it. They had even started talking of buying a house, being "responsible about his inheritance" as Tony's father put it.
Even Tim had to congratulate them on how well they seemed to have adjusted to living together. "To be honest, I gave you two weeks. Abby checked the "forever" box, to no one's surprise."
Tony cocked his head. "Checked the 'forever box?' Are you saying that there is an actual pool going around about how long Ziva and I will stick together. And you gave us two weeks?"
Tim shrugged. "Anderson in HR gave you two hours."
"What!" Tony stood up. He looked at Ziva, who was laughing. "Did you know about this?"
"Of'course not, Tony. But do you not think if it was not some other couple you would have started your own betting pool?"
Tony had to grin at that. Just then, Vance called from the balcony. "Gibbs, David, my office please."
Tony looked at Ziva with alarm. Ziva just shrugged and patted his arm as she and Gibbs walked by to head upstairs.
Once they reached Vance's office, he waved them to the table, indicating they should sit down. He looked at Ziva. "This is somewhat delicate, so I hope you will bear with me." Ziva looked at Gibbs confused, who looked at her with that expression that he knew they were going to be asked to come to the office.
"Get on with it, Leon." Gibbs said, wanting to get the niceties out of the way. Vance turned to Ziva.
"Agent David, when was the last time you spoke with your father?"
Ziva was totally taken aback by the question. Whatever she thought Vance was going to say; and privately she was worried he somehow found out the "fake" marriage was "real"; her father never entered her thoughts.
She thought about it for a while and shrugged. 'I do not remember exactly. It was several months after the bombing, but certainly not recently. Why are you asking me this?"
Vance took a deep breath. "I have spoken to your father several times, in the past few months, Ziva. And I have to say to you that I am concerned."
The fact that Vance called her "Ziva" alarmed her more than anything. "What is your concern?"
He sighed and looked at Gibbs. "Ziver, Vance thinks your father may be ill. Nothing has been said, but…"
"He doesn't sound like himself, David. He sounds…weak, like he has to stop and take breaths before he continues. Of'course, it is hard to really tell over a secured international phone line."
Ziva turned to Gibbs. "You knew about this? And didn't tell me?"
Gibbs shook his head. "Director Vance briefed me this morning shortly before he called us up here." Just then they were interrupted by his administrative assistant. "They are ready for you in MTAC, Director."
Vance stood. "That's for us." Ziva and Gibbs stood up and followed Vance out. Gibbs put his hand on Ziva's arm. "I don't know what this is about, Ziva. But I am here right beside you."
Ziva felt shaken. As much as she loved Gibbs, she would much rather have Tony with her right now. She guessed "boyfriend" didn't carry as much weight as "boss."
Once they were settled in front of the screen, Vance nodded at the technician. Suddenly the screen came alive. "Malachi!" Ziva gasped.
"Shalom, Ziva. I am making this call without the knowledge of the Director, so it will be quick. Ziva, your father is very ill and you need to come home, now!"
Ziva swallowed hard and looked pale. "What is wrong with him? Why do I need to come? WHY AM I ONLY HEARING ABOUT THIS NOW?"
Malachi's expression had not changed during Ziva's tirade. He waited for her to be through before answering. "Your father is dying, Ziva. Only a bone marrow transplant will save him. It is imperative that you come home now."
This pissed off Gibbs. "Are you telling Ziva that the only reason her father wants her to come home is to get her bone marrow so he can live? He is a bigger son of a bitch than I thought."
Malachi shook his head. "Director David does not want Ziva to come at all. He does not want her bone marrow. We are asking her to come, to save our Director, who happens to be her father and therefore a better probability of a successful match. The decision is Ziva's. But if she does not come, Director David will die; soon."
Ziva finally found her voice. "First of all Malachi, Israel is not my home anymore, I was only born there. Second, why doesn't my father want me to come?"
"I do not know his reasons for not wanting you to come. Maybe he does not want you to endure whatever it takes to get bone marrow from someone. I do not have these answers for you." He looked to the left. "I must go. Please tell me you will come."
Ziva looked conflicted, then defeated. "I will come, if only to piss him off by showing up anyway!" The screen went blank.
Ziva turned to Director Vance. "That is if I have your permission to go to Israel."
"Of'course. I will arrange the transportation. We will get you there as soon as possible."
Ziva nodded. "Thank you, Director. I would like Tony to accompany me."
Both Vance and Gibbs looked at each other. "This isn't a pleasure trip, David."
"No, it is a family matter and I want and need Tony to be there."
Gibbs guided her out of the office. "Come on, Ziva."
Once Tony saw Gibbs and Ziva come out of Vance's office, he bolted up the stairs to join them. He immediately went to her side, sensing her rising stress levels. "What's wrong?"
"It would appear that my father in dying and Malachi wants me to go to Israel to give him my bone marrow." Ziva answered.
"Malachi, huh? What about your father?" Gibbs shook his head.
"Ok, are you going to do this?" Tony looked at Ziva. Ziva's shoulders sagged. "I believe it is my duty to do this." Tony hugged her. "Ok, when do we leave?"
Gibbs held up his hand. "Wait a second." He turned to Ziva, genuine regret in his eyes. "I know you want Tony to go with you, but I can't let both of you go right now in the middle of this case we are working on."
He let those words sink in. "Boss, come on! O'Brien can fill in for me." As soon as he said it, he knew it wasn't true. He turned to Ziva. "How long will this take? I mean, how long could you possibly be gone?"
Ziva looked surprised. "I do not know."
Tony looked at Gibbs. "Are we sure that this is the real story and not some lame attempt to get Ziva back?"
Gibbs rubbed his chin. "Frankly, I considered the same thought. But Leon has been talking to Eli, and he has been concerned that he has been quite ill. That's why he called us up. I think this is legitimate, Tony."
Tony turned to Ziva, very concerned. "When do you leave?" Ziva looked into his eyes, tears forming knowing he would not be able to be with her. "Director Vance he would arrange transport ASAP."
Tony turned to Gibbs. "Can you spare me long enough to take Ziva home and get her packed and…"
"Go, but don't be all day about it. I will call you to get your asses back here if you aren't back when Vance gives the go-ahead."
Tony and Ziva nodded and practically ran down the stairs to grab their stuff.
Tim looked up. "Uh, Tony, Ziva? Is everything ok?" He stood up. "Boss?"
Gibbs looked grimly at Tim. "Ziva has to return to Israel. Her father is dying. I want you to get a tracer on her so we can keep track of her every move."
"On it, Boss! Thinking there's more to this than they are letting on?"
"Just making sure there isn't, McGee. I want Ziva back."
"Is Tony going with her?" McGee asked as if it was a given and was surprised when Gibbs shook his head no.
"Oh." Tim sat down at his desk. "Ok, well, I'll keep my eye on Tony."
Gibbs had to smile at that: Tim feeling he needed to take care of Tony.
Tony and Ziva's Apartment
Ziva was running around, grabbing clothes and stuffing them in a suitcase. She seemed to be going in circles, not sure where to go next. Tony finally couldn't stand it anymore and held her arm. "Ziva, please. Stop."
She looked at him, her eyes wild. Slowly, her façade collapsed and she found herself enveloped in Tony's arms. "I do not like this, Tony. I want you there with me. I no longer feel safe there."
"Do you think this is a ruse to get you away from us?
"I do not know, but there are many in Mossad I do not trust."
Tony hugged her tighter. "I can't just disappear. Gibbs will know what I am doing and I really like my job, though I love you more." They held each other quietly for several moments.
"I am sure Gibbs will make sure I am monitored. He probably has McGee making up some locating device as we speak. I am not as worried about being there as I am about being able to come back home, here."
Tony held her face and kissed her deeply. "If it should come to that, I will come and get you; to hell with Vance and Gibbs. You are the love of my life. I will not lose you again."
Ziva smiled. "How much time do we have?"
Tony smiled. "How much time do we need?"
Ziva pulled him toward their bedroom. "Just enough. You can welcome me back properly when I get back home."
Getting back into the groove. This one is another multi-parter: too much for one chapter. Hope you enjoy it. Part two is the eye-opener for Ziva.