Chapter 6

Gibbs returned to the hospital at 2100 that night to relieve DiNozzo on guard duty. Gibbs preferred the night hours on guard. He figured that during the day there were so many people in and out of a patient's room, doctors, nurses, housekeeping staff, visitors and family, that anyone trying anything would be at high risk of being seen or actually caught. During the night hours, visitors and most family members were home resting, doctors visits were fewer, and nurses monitored but respected the patient's need for rest. Even security seemed more at ease at night, concentrating mostly on the emergency room area of the hospital and trusting to locked doors to reduce traffic flow and "keep out the riffraff". His gut was telling him that if anything was going to be tried against his agent, it was going to be done during the night shift and he was going to be there.

Sitting in the same chair he had occupied many hours earlier, he again studied his youngest agent. It was apparent that most of the swelling had gone down on the right side of his head. The large wrapped dressing that had been on him turban-style had been replaced by a medium-sized gauze dressing taped over the wound itself. Again he remembered the doctor's words when he had come out to speak to them after treating McGee in the ER. The bullet had come close enough that it had actually gouged a channel in the bone of Tim's skull, causing shock and trauma to the brain itself. The resulting injury was much the same as a skull fracture, and had been treated thusly. The swelling of the brain had necessitated them drilling a hole in Tim's skull to relieve pressure, hoping to decrease the chances of permanent damage to the young man.

Thankfully, the doctor had reported to Gibbs that from the testing done while Tim was awake it looked like there had been no permanent damage done. It was just going to take some time and rest for the young man's return.

Settling himself more comfortably in his chair, Gibbs took a drink of his coffee as he prepared himself for a long night. Ziva would be on hand to relieve him at 0600.

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The next morning, Tony hummed to himself as he exited the elevator and walked toward the bullpen. Rounding the corner to his desk, he stopped in surprise at a strangely familiar site. Seated at McGee's desk, young Murray was sleeping, head on his crossed arms, hair sticking up at odd angles from running his hands through it while working. Remembering years ago, when it was another young Tech genius he would find in that position, he smiled an old familiar smile. He walked quietly over and picked up the large dictionary from his bookcase. Sneaking quietly over to the other desk, he raised the dictionary to drop suddenly and loudly on the desk, but before he could let the large book go, he suddenly froze, saying quickly . . . "Good morning, Boss!"

"Morning, DiNozzo. Having trouble with your vocabulary this morning?" Gibbs replied from behind Tony. He took a sip of his coffee and smirked as DiNozzo turned to look at him.

"No, Boss, not at all. Just doing some morning stretches." He answered, quickly raising and lowering the book several times, as if lifting weights. Turning back to his own desk, he switched arms on the way to his chair.

The voices had been enough to rouse Sean, who blinked in bemusement for a minute, obviously trying to figure out where he was and what he was doing there. "Agent G-G-Gibbs!" He exclaimed. "What? Oh!"

"Apparently you never made it home last night, Murray. You alright this morning?"

"Oh! Yes, Sir . . . Agent Gibbs. I'm fine, but I have been waiting for you to come in because I have some information for you!" He looked around at the busy bullpen, "Can we talk somewhere more private, Sir?" He asked.

"Let's go upstairs to the Director's office. That is about as private as we can get around here, and I have a feeling that this is something that the Director needs to hear also." Turning, Gibbs lead the way up the stairs.

Vance just looked at Gibbs as they entered his office without even knocking. "Yes, do come in Gibbs. After all, my day is not complete without you barging in and interrupting something!" came the dry, sarcastic greeting.

"Director, Murray has something he needs to tell us, and we need to make sure he has a secure place to speak." Said Gibbs.

"Secure as in Priority One?" came Vance's response as he straightened his spine as if to prepare himself for bad news.

"Yes, sir." The reply came from Agent Murray with a look on his face like he had just tasted something that disagreed with him.

Vance reached beneath his desk and flipped a switch, and the three in the room heard the "snick" sound of the door locking, a panel slid down over the window, and the low-muted sounds of the building ceased. "The room is secure. Don't worry about listening devices, this room is swept for bugs twice a day at random times." Looking at his Senior Agent of the MCRT and the young TAD, Vance then asked, "What is this information you have and why the need for such security?"

Gibbs then turned to Murray and said, "Everything is secure, Kid. What'ta'ya got?"

Looking at Agent Gibbs, Murray replied, "I was following the trail of Agent McGee through his search. As you know, Sir, I found evidence that someone had been ghosting his search and was trying to trace the trail of his shadow. Well, as I was searching, I suddenly thought that if they were ghosting him, then they might be ghosting me so I did some checking. And they were, Sir. They must have had a bot set up to alert them if someone tried the trace again, and without realizing it, I must have tripped it. However, I was successful in tracing the trail back to someone inside NCIS itself without letting them know I did that. Now. . . I know I'm not the most experienced agent here, but it had to be someone extremely familiar with computers and most of the programs I have been using. The only problem is, that would almost have to be someone within my own unit, Sir. Only Agent McGee, himself, or someone from the CiberCrimes Unit would have access to these programs or be able to enact them with such subtlety. What is worse is that I have alerted them that they are being traced, so they are now forewarned that someone is looking for them." He bowed his head as if in shame, as he felt that they should now consider him unworthy of the faith that they had place in him. He felt as if he had let them, and his mentor, down.

"So the mole must be someone within our own agency, instead of in the FBI!" was Vance's almost sad response. "Someone within our own agency warned Masters and must have told him that McGee was the one responsible for us locating him. That doesn't tell us how Masters knew which one of the agents responding was McGee, though . . ."

Gibb's gut nudged at him with Murray's words. "Leon, I have a suspicion that I may know who our mole is, but I have no proof at this time. However, it is someone that may actually have a grudge against McGee as well as the technical know-how to trail McGee. And it is someone that has had prior access to McGee's computer."

Vance looked thoughtful for a moment. "You mean . . . " and he trailed off.

Gibbs answered swiftly, "You know as well as I do that he was extremely unhappy to be removed from my team when McGee was transferred back up from the CCU. From what Agent Murray has told me, he must have thought his assignment to my team was permanent, because he "broke the Geek code" by making changes to McGee's computer settings. I know that there has been resentment on McGee's part, apparently because of said changes."

At Gibbs words, Murray looked up at him in surprise, but just for a moment. His thoughts turned inward, and Gibbs could see him considering what Gibbs suspected. "I think you might be right, sir," he stated, "From things I have heard downstairs, and observations I have made since I started, I know that Agent Keating heartedly dislikes Agent McGee. He disparages him every chance he gets, and if anyone in the Unit says anything complementary to or about McGee, it aggravates him."

Vance looked at Gibbs after hearing Murray's statement. "Have you got any ideas, Agent Gibbs, how we can entrap him or gather any proof against him?"

"Yes, I just might have, Leon." Gibbs replied heavily. "I don't much like it, but it might be the only chance we have . . . "

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