Okay, so i know it's probably bad form to have two stories in the same catagory running at the same time, but it's happening. This won't leave me alone, so it's getting written.
Also, for the time frame, i'm not really sure. It's after Gibbs' return from Mexico, but we've got Vance as director. It probably shiould be Jenny, but i'm no a fan of her and she wouldn't really work in the situation i'm setting up here.
Anywho, i hope you grow to enjoy it!
Tony already knew it was going to be a long day, he'd only been in the office a couple of hours, and Gibbs had already head slapped, growled and glared at him more times than he cared to count. There was a migraine building behind his eyes, and he was so tired it made his bones ache. It had been like this since Gibbs had come back, taken his job back without a word to Tony or a care for tearing away his or McGee's new posts within the team. Not that he much cared for McGee at the moment, or Ziva, or Abby. Things has changed since Gibbs' accident, too much. Tony hated almost every second of working with them now, and that wasn't something he wanted to put himself through for much longer.
'Did you even listen to a word I just said DiNozzo?' Gibbs growled, pulling Tony from his thoughts. He thinks he hears Ducky, he'd called and asked for his headache pills ten minutes ago, shouting across the bullpen, making him wince slightly.
'Jethro, don't..' But he doesn't get to finish that sentence, because Gibbs gives him what is possibly the hardest head slap he'd ever received. It takes a second for the white burst of pain to subside, and the battle with the nausea rising in him after that meant he heard nothing Gibbs had said for at least half a minute, he didn't see the smirks of Ziva and McGee, he didn't see the way Palmer and Ducky had frozen, watching him.
'You know what, DiNozzo, if you can't be bothered to listen and do you job then you know where the door is.' Tony looks up just in time to catch the way Gibbs' jaw clenched as he nodded towards the elevator. Tony sighed, and looked up at Gibbs for a second, considering.
'Fine.' He sighed, loud enough to bring shocked looks to every agent who had stopped to watch Gibbs blow up in his agents face again. 'Fine, you want me to go? I'm going. I'm done.' Tony stood, unclipped his badge from his belt and pulled his gun from the shoulder holster, checking for chambered rounds and making sure the safety was on. Slowly, he made his way towards Gibbs' desk, he'd moved to sit while he shouted at Tony for his 'incompetence.' Tony dropped both items in from of Gibbs.
'The information on the suspects whereabouts is on my desk, completed before you even came in this morning. I hope it helps.' With that he turned and headed for the stairs leading to MTAC and the directors office without a second glance at anyone. The walk to the desk before Vance's office felt like the longest walk of his life, but he knew he had to do this now, or he'd never build up the nerve to do it again.
'Cynthia, I need to see the director. It's important.' The timid brunette nodded with a concerned look on her face, she'd heard snippets of the conversation that had taken place when people had opened and closed the door to her office. She didn't say anything though, instead picking up the phone and putting through the call to the director.
'He said you can see him now, if it's quick.' Cynthia replied quietly, finally putting the phone down. Tony gave her a tiny smile, a shadow of the one he'd come to NCIS with, and turned to enter the directors office.
'Agent DiNozzo, what can I do for you today?' Vance was perched on the side of his desk, with a newspaper in his hand and a toothpick hanging out of his mouth.
'Consider this conversation my resignation, I'll get the write up to you tomorrow, effective immediately. I've handed my gun and badge to Agent Gibbs, so if I can just sign my legal forms, I'd like to leave as soon as possible.'
Vance just blinked at him for a moment, trying to figure out whether he was telling the truth or not.
'Agent DiNozzo, are you sure? What's sparked this sudden decision to leave, are you sure you just don't need some holiday time? You have plenty to take..' Tony sighed, he'd expected some resistance, but he just gave Vance a look like he knew he wouldn't put up too much of a fight.
'I need out, director. I can't work with them anymore, I can't work with him anymore, and I know you know why.' Vance just blinked at him again.
'He still hasn't remembered?'
'Would I be leaving the others to watch his six if he had?' Tony replies curtly, bowing his head and pinching the bridge of his nose with his fingers. 'The legal forms director, so I can leave.' Vance sighed, forcing Tony to look back up at him.
'There's nothing I can do to make you stay?' Tony shook his head. 'Well then, I'll have HR send out the forms, take the days until they get back to me as paid holiday.'
'Thank you.' Tony replied with a nod, turning back towards the door.
'Oh, and DiNozzo?' Vance coughed behind him, opening up the newspaper he had been reading and not looking back up when Tony turned around with his hand on the door handle. 'If you're serious about leaving, call Fornell and ask him to set up the meeting. I know the FBI has plans for you.' Tony tried to hide the tired smirk that threatened to explode from his face. He already knew, Tobias had told him the FBI had wanted him after they got to be friends after Gibb's accident. He didn't know exactly what they wanted him for, but it was important enough for Fornell to keep pushing even when Tony had been resolute about sticking it out with NCIS.
'Thanks director.' Tony replied, not waiting for anything in return, he left the room quietly with a small nod and a smile to Cynthia. He descended the stairs and rounded into the bullpen, met by unbelieving stares from pretty much every agent in the building. The only people who weren't staring in shock were Palmer and Ducky, who were watching him from beside his desk with some kind of weird quiet pride.
Tony unfolded a box from behind his desk and began dropping things into it, the mighty mouse stapler, the mug Ziva had gotten him for Christmas her first year in America, the team picture of them all, the little photo of Kate taped to his computer screen. He moved onto his desk, emptying it of everything that belonged to him until he got to the locked box of Gibbs' medals in his bottom draw. He paused and pulled in a breath, which finally gave the others some kind of signal to start interrogating him.
'Tony, surely you are not leaving? What else will you do other than this, where would you go?' Tony didn't miss the way Ducky's eyes narrowed at Ziva as she talked, and he shook his head minutely in his direction, telling him that now was not the time.
'Dunno, Ziva. Away from here, I guess.' Ziva just gaped at him in surprise, everyone else was still watching them.
'Why would you even want to leave, you've got a good thing here Tony!' McGee sneered, drawing glares from the others in the office area.
'Yeah right, with the way you guys have been treating him..'
'That's enough, Nick.' Tony cut the agent across the room off with an apologetic smile that got a small nod in return. Gibbs still hadn't said anything, just watched as Tony bent down again and pulled out a locked box and a set of keys out of his draw. Tony made his way over to Gibbs' desk once again, and placed the box down with much more care than he had his gun and badge.
'These are yours, I guess I don't have a right to keep hold of them anymore..' He couldn't look up at Gibbs, because he knew Gibbs didn't remember this. Knew he didn't know what was in that box that could mean so much to Tony, enough to make his Senior Field Agent's voice crack, his eyes water with tears before he blinked them away. Finally, Tony turned away, slipped his suit jacket back on and picked up his box of stuff. Ducky put a hand on his arm as he went to pass them, holding him still near Ducky and Palmer.
'Will you be okay?' Ducky was asking not only about what had just happened, as upsetting as it was, but about the migraines that could have Tony reduced to tears in mere moments if he wasn't careful.
'I'll be fine, the ones I took before work should hold out until I get home.' Tony replied in a whisper before sharing a small smile with the two medical professionals. 'Dinner is still happening at mine tomorrow, if you're coming?' They both nod. 'Good, I guess I'll see you both then.' Tony doesn't spare a glance back at the team that was once his family as he moved towards the elevator with his things, instead accepting the pats on the backs and small smiles from the other agents he passed until eventually those doors closed around him and he could slump against the wall, trying not to cry.
'You have no idea what you've just lost.' Ducky turned to the others, all frozen in the bullpen. He was angry, and hurt, seeing them all react so idiotically to Anthony's departure. 'Absolutely no idea what that man has done for you all, what he has done for everyone he has ever come across. You have no idea how far you must have all pushed him to cause this.' Ducky strode into the middle of their work area and glared at them all.
'What do you mean, we have not done anything to him?' Ziva exclaimed, crossing her arms and looking indignant. At least three other agents snorted at that, earning them glares that they ignored.
'You have done nothing?' Ducky exploded. 'How can you even say that? Tony has tried to hold this team together, only to have you all throw it back in his face with mistrust, mistreatment, belittlement, jokes and those silly 'you're not Gibbs.' remarks.' He was still focused on Ziva as he continued, his voice raising with every new word. 'You believing him to be silly, idiotic, a frat boy with no goals and aspirations. You believe yourself the better fighter, the more loyal. You're wrong.' He whirled around, turning to face an increasingly pale McGee. 'And you. The same, only you choose to ignore his intelligence, his degree's, many which rival yours. His dedication and his ability to take the force of whatever mood you ever infallible boss is in without either of you getting any backlash from it.' McGee spluttered, looking suddenly as indignant as Ziva.
'What do you mean, degree's? He has a degree in phys ed!' Tim practically shouted.
'You have been in his home, haven't you?' Ducky leaned his palms down on McGee's desk, towering him. Tim just nodded. 'You have been in his apartment and yet you choose to ignore the Harvard Alumni letters he has lying around, the jerseys and sweaters and other items of big, important universities. Tony has a degree in physical education, yes. But he also has a degree in Criminology from Harvard, a degree in computer science from MIT. Just to mention a few! He took lessons in both psychology and biology during his first three years as an officer of the law and passed all of his exams. He's the youngest police officer to have been awarded a commendation for bravery, if he'd been in the military, the boy would have gotten a medal of valour by now.' Ducky concluded, his face was red, his voice as loud and as violent as he could get it, and McGee looked shell-shocked.
'But.. Why would he- I don't understand!' Ducky shook his head and stood straighter.
'No, you do not. You have to use your education to make yourself better than others, Timothy, whereas Tony would prefer to keep it quiet and less boastful. He always looked after you, and Ziva, and you Gibbs.' Ducky had finally turned to face their usually unflappable leader. 'He always..' Ducky sighed, he really shouldn't have said the things he had already said, and he really should not be getting into the issues with Gibbs without Tony's express permission. 'Never mind, I'm sure you will all never understand, and will find a way to blame Tony for this all when your team can no longer function without him.' With that, and a sad, tired look at them all, he waved Palmer to follow him and left them to their devices. There was nothing more he could do now, and he had meant it when he said they would never understand, so why waste time trying to make them. He should concentrate on Tony, and how the poor lad must be doing.
Half past seven in the evening found Tony in a bar not far from his apartment, nursing a beer and waiting for Fornell to turn up. He'd rang the FBI agent once he'd gotten the upcoming headache under control.
'Two beers, two scotches, two fries please.' Tony smirked at the order, it was the same they got in any bar they ever went in.
'Took your time, Tobias.' Tony turned towards the older man, who was smiling at him.
'You know me, 'Nozzo. I like to keep 'em waiting.' Tony chuckled. 'So, what's up with the emergency booty call?'
'You wish.' Tony smirked at him, then sighed and dropped the expression. 'I quit NCIS.' There was a multitude of emotions flowing across Fornell's face, somewhere between concerned and ecstatic.
'Okay..' Fornell began, trying to judge Tony's mood, and failing. 'So, what caused that?' Tony shrugged.
'I don't really know, under appreciation, tired of it. He still doesn't remember, and I can't stand that anymore.' Fornell just nodded. 'I can't be there anymore, can hardly trust them to have my back in the field.'
'I know.' Fornell replied. 'It was just a matter of time before they lost you, Tonio, best it happened this way. At least we have a slammin' job lined up for you.' That brought the smirk back to Tony's face.
'Actually, that's why I called you. Set the meeting up, as soon as possible.'
'You sure?' Fornell grinned at him, collecting up their beers and a basket of fries while Tony got the others and they headed to a newly free booth.
'Very sure. I'm done at NCIS.' Tony replied once they were settled in.
'Well I'll drink to that.' Fornell raised his beer, clinking it against the scotch glass Tony had picked up.
A trip to the bathroom and two drinks later, Fornell finally announced to Tony that the meeting was set up.
'But-How?!' Tony spluttered.
'I'm more technologically advanced than Gibbs.' Fornell smirked, 'I text the director. He and I are old golf buddies.'
'Ahh.' Tony replied, suddenly looking nervous.
'Hey, don't worry about it Tonio, okay? You'll do great, they're not even interviewing you, they're offering you a job, and it's big. That's all I'm telling you. Just be there at 9 tomorrow, and say yes.' Fornell replied, downing the rest of his scotch and standing. 'Go home, DiNozzo. Big week for you.' Tony nodded, standing to follow Fornell out the door and heading their respective ways. He only lived a block away, and he had some things to think about before he crashed for the day.