I'm not sure it's in character, at all. And I'm not sure it goes well with the atmosphere at the glimpses from the promo. I don't even know what this is. But, it is, whatever "it" may be, so there you go :P

*Don't own nothing.

"Sympathy is the last thing I want right now."

The usually full of light face was now almost lifeless. Shut down. Eyelids cast downwards, exhausted. Hair is… wrong. All wrong. Everything is just so, very wrong.

"What do you need?"

"Revenge," she says, in such a way… she knows just how grave that statement is. How violent and bloody and cruel. Ugly. Human.

And one that is hard for him to stand, coming from her. She was always, always capable of compassion. Not this time.

"Are you sure?"

She narrows her eyes at him, confused. Her mouth opens, then closes back again. And then, "what do you mean?"

Does he really have to explain? Is she really that far away, deep inside of her own body, below all those layers of pain? No. He won't. He has to draw her back, even just the slightest bit. It must be so cold down there. And dark. And suffocating. So he stares, hard, willing his eyes to penetrate all the way down to where she is. Finally, he sees understanding crossing her features.

"You sought vengeance when you thought I was dead."

He gulps. "Yes. I did." He pauses. She's trying to justify herself. Maybe there's still a chance. "That doesn't mean it was the right thing to do."

She seems to be pondering that. But then-

"I do not care."

More staring. He hates to see her like this. He wishes he could take it all away with a simple waive of his hand. But, he can't. Doesn't feel like there's anything he can do, really. But standing aside doesn't seem right, either.

"Are you… looking for redemption? For not… being there? For Vance's wife."

Her eyes widen the tiniest bit, and he knows he must have hit something right. But when she answers, she's nonchalant and cold. He knows it's forced.

"Perhaps I am." She looks so tired. "What difference does it make?"

"Because, Ziva," he raises his voice. He can't take it much longer. "You're running."

She huffs. "I don't need this."

She starts walking to get past him and leave, but he grabs her arm tightly and blocks her way. He manages to keep his voice lower this time.

"Hey, no. You're not dealing with it."

"I DON'T WANT TO DEAL WITH IT!" She pulls her hand from him, breathing hard.


"No!" She shakes her head, and then looks him straight in the eye. "My father is dead, and I want them to pay."

"They will."

"I need to make sure of that."

"We. Will."

"I need to do it."

He isn't sure when, but his hands are suddenly on her shoulders, soft, offering comfort. He feels the pain and sorrow flowing through every cell in her body, and wills his own to absorb some of it, to make it a little easier on her.

He sighs. "You're not alone in this, Ziva. We're here." He hesitates for a second. "I'm here."

Exhaling a hint of a held, frustrated sob, she averts her eyes. He sees her struggling, but finally her lower lip starts to tremble. Releasing another saddened sigh, she covers her face with her hands, and tries to control her breathing. She fails. The tears come pouring from between her fingers, and her body starts to shake.

His heart breaks.

He reaches closer, enveloping his arms around her. Her hands still on her face, she doesn't really move, but allows him to hold her, leaning onto his shoulder.

And the tears keep falling.

Not very happy, I know. Sorry. Shabbat Shalom did that to me. Blame NCIS writers.

(I'd love it if you reviewed, by the way. Please?)


Just to be clear – when Tony questions his quest for Saleem's life, he means to question his motives. I mean to say that the wish for revenge isn't necessarily a good enough reason to take a life, any life. I am NOT saying Saleem didn't deserve to die, nor am I saying he did. I don't have the privilege, for lack of a better word, to be the judge on that, far from it. I'm only referring to the fact that he let his need for payback dictate his actions, because I think that debate is viable.