All right guys! I apologize for my month-long absence. I'm not entirely sure what happened...

Anyways, here is a story I wrote per the request of SpiritWriterXXX as an alternate ending to my stories Eleanor Rigby and its sequel All the Lonely People. Basically, what would happen if Ziva and Tony found McGee in time to save him.

WARNING: Contains suicidal thoughts and actions (Geez, I feel like I'm writing one of those medication commercials: "May cause suicidal thoughts or actions in teens and young adults...") but NO character death.

DISCLAIMER: I do NOT own NCIS, or the song Eleanor Rigby, by the Beatles

Waits at the window

Wearing the face that she keeps in a jar by the door.

Night fell. The headlights on the road were dull and orange. Suddenly the car came to a slow halt in a parking lot.

"Why are we stopping this time?" Ziva asked irritated.

Tony couldn't help but to smirk at her. "Why so grumpy my little probette? Who glazes her pop-tarts in angst, who fries her bacon in the can of hatred," Tony chided.

Ziva groaned, irritably, as she closed her eyes. "I would just like to go home, DiNozzo," She snapped, tiredly.

"So why don't you drive yourself, then?" Tony asked. Then a smirk slid across his face. "Oh yeah, that's right, you can't. Not for two more weeks. Dislocated shoulders can be a pain,"

Ziva said nothing but glared at him quietly. She glanced out the window and saw, to her surprise, a very familiar building. "Why are we at McGee's?" She asked.

Tony shrugged. "He let me borrow some stuff a while ago and I thought I should return it," He said simply as he slid out of the car. The truth was, the stuff he borrowed from McGee, he borrowed over a years ago. He has put it in the back of his car to return, over a year ago, and there it had sat, forgotten, for over a year. Tony only chose to return it now, to get on Ziva's nerves. He got the bunk out of the trunk and walked back to the driver's seat, leaning in the window. "Come on," He said.

"I would like to stay in the car, thank you," Ziva responded shortly.

"Nope," Tony chirped with a grin. "You're coming with. I don't trust you in my car alone. And besides, it'll probably be the first time McGeek's ever had a girl in his apartment," He snickered.

Ziva rolled her eyes, she grunted in defiance then let out a sigh. "Fine. I will come. But only because I do not want you and McGee to kill each other, after your little fight today,"

Tony beamed triumphantly, only to have Ziva give him the stink eye. The former Mossad agent got out of the car and stepped into the cold night. She walked swiftly up the stairs, her partner following closely behind. Come up to the door she knew to be Tim's apartment, she knocked once, twice, and rang the doorbell. The pair waited outside the door for several moments of awkward silence.

"I do not believe he is home," Ziva states.

Tony grunted in slight frustration. He leaned forward and peered into the peep hole of the door. He could see the shadows shuffling along the walls and floor. "No… he's in there…" He shifted the box to one arm so he could pound on the door. "Hey! McGee! Open up!" He called.

Ziva pushed Tony out to the side and looked through the peep hole for herself. "Perhaps it is just Jethro," She commented. But she quickly abandoned her own thought, noting that the shadow was too human-like to be Jethro.

"It's not Jethro! What are you talking about? It's McGee! He's just ig-" Tony started but was quickly cut off.

"SH!" Ziva shushed him fiercely, waving her hand. She was trying to concentrate because the man to whom the shadow belonged, was acting very strangely.

Tony narrowed his eyes and set down the ox. Ziva stepped out of the way for a moment to allow Tony to take a look and note the man's peculiar behavior. Tony did note the strange behavior, but then he saw something that horrified him. That shadow looked an awfully lot like…

"Oh my go-… gun… he's got-" He stopped short when he saw the shadow point the gun… put the barrel in his mouth-

The thought happened in a fraction of a second. The moment the word "gun" tumbled from his mouth, it was a simultaneous action; Tony and Ziva breaking down the door. It happened in a flash. The scene unfolded was so quick and blurred, it was as if it had taken place in the fraction of time between two seconds. They ran, moving so fast it was as if they were flying. Rounding the corner, they forced their way into the bathroom. Time stopped.

McGee. Timothy McGee. Their brother. Their baby brother. Standing in the bathtub. Gun. The barrel in his mouth. Fingers, clamped down on the trigger. Squeezing, closing- … Black out.

- - BANG

Blood. Oh go- so much blood… Shock. Horror. Pale. His knees… they felt weak. Would they give? Was he breathing? No. Too shocked to breath. Shock. Pain. It hurt to inhale. He couldn't think. What happened? How? His head… it hurt… It didn't seem possible.

Somehow, perhaps Ziva had pushed him, but Tony lurched forward, shoving into McGee… The barrel moved… out of his mouth… The bullet skimmed the side of his head. Blood… so much blood… but it hadn't pierced his skull… He was okay!

McGee looked up at Tony with a shocked, horrified look on his face, blood running down into his eyes. He trembled. Knees wobbling, that threatened to fail.

"I-I…" McGee couldn't seem to find the words. Finally, his knees gave in. He collapsed into Tony's arms, unable to support himself anymore.

Ziva walked to the sides of her coworkers, and sat on the tub next to them. The repeated apologies that spilled forth from McGee, broke their hearts. Ziva rubbed circles on his back, and offered words of comfort.

Tim was hysterical. "I-I'm sorry…! I'm so sorry…" He wailed over and over again, his breath hitching.

Tony pushed him back just a little, hands on McGee's shoulders, and made the younger agent look into his eyes. "McGee… Tim, I want you to listen to me. It's not your fault. It never was. Tim, it's our fault. For not noticing you were hurting. For letting it come to this. Tim, you're our family. We love you. This never should've happened," Tony spoke softly. The broken look in McGee's eyes, shattered his heart. He brought the young agent into his tender embrace, holding him closely. "Oh Tim… I'm so sorry…"

"Oh, Tim…" Ziva crooned. She sat on the other side of him on the edge of the tub. She wrapped her arms around him as well. She wasn't very good a the whole "comfort" thing, but a moment like this… Her maternal instinct kicked in and she did her best.

McGee had his head rested on Tony's shoulder, his own arms hanging uselessly at his side. His shoulders were sagged, as if weighed down by the weight of the world. His face was growing increasingly pale. And Tony knew he was probably feeling very weak, from the trauma he had just inflicted on himself.

Tony shook the younger man's shoulder, very gently. "Hey, how about we take you to the hospital. We'll get that gash of your head stitched up, then you can come to my place, and stay there 'till you feel better. How about that?" Tony asked softly.

McGee looked at Tony, then gave a slight nod. It'd been a horrible, horrible day. But now he was safe. Now he was safe.

Who is it for?