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[NCIS] [Gen] [T] Sliding Doors

Written for the ncis_ficathon, Round Three.

Title: Sliding Doors
Written for: infiniteviking
Prompt: Five times the elevator saved Gibbs's life.
Archive: upon request
Pairings: None. Totally Gen.
Rating: T
Disclaimer: I own nothing, nothing owns me.
Word Count: 2475
Author’s Notes: Thanks to pixie_on_acid and goodisrelative for speedy beta-reading. Although I’d like to note that I’m not late – as a pinch-hitter, I’m actually early. :-)

Summary: These are five separate stories based on the prompt, each in different time frames, different styles, and sometimes different tenses (which drove both my betas crazy).



1.
The radio crackled and Tony’s voice came through. “First floor cleared, Boss.”

Gibbs stopped at a corner, pressed against the wall, and replied in a low voice. “Get back outside. Make sure Metro has sealed the perimeter. Then help Ziva and McGee clear the warehouse.”

Gun at the ready, Gibbs turned the corner and moved quickly but quietly down the hall. Ahead on the right was an elevator; on the left was a wall of glass looking into the company’s office suite. He hugged the right wall for as long it gave him a vantage point through the glass without being seen, then quickly moved to the left.

Sliding along the wall to the edge of the glass, Gibbs paused, knowing he’d have no cover from that point forward. He listened carefully and heard no sound. But something was off – a faint cast of light came from inside the darkened, windowless reception area.

He darted out quickly, threw open the door and rushed into the room, sweeping quickly from left to right with his gun. Advancing on the reception desk, he saw the source of the light – a timer, and it was counting down. Less than 20 seconds to go.

In a split second, Gibbs assessed his chances of making it back to the stairwell and the likelihood of the blast trapping him in rubble. Making his decision, he made a run for the elevator. He jammed the call button with his thumb, and was relieved not to hear the elevator lurch into motion from below.

Relief quickly turned to frustration as the doors slowly began to slide apart. As soon as the opening was wide enough to slip past, Gibbs dove through it and began pressing the button for the first floor – repeatedly and forcefully. The doors creaked closed just as slowly as they had opened. Finally, the elevator pitched downward, then pitched again as the explosion rocked the building.

Trapped between floors but still in one piece, Gibbs breathed a sigh of relief.

“Gibbs! Gibbs!” Tony’s voice was frantic over the radio.

“I’m fine,” he replied. “I’m in the elevator. Get the fire department and get me the hell out of here.”




2.
The phone buzzed and Cynthia’s voice came through the intercom. “Director Shepard, I have Director Mueller of the FBI on line two.”

Jenny sighed. “Alright, put him through.” After waiting three rings, she picked up the phone. “Director Mueller, I’m surprised to be hearing from you. I thought the case against Agent McGee was fully resolved.”

“It is, Director Shepard, but the case against Agent Gibbs is not.”

“Gibbs?” Jenny tried to sound surprised, but really, it wasn’t the first time she’d had the director of another agency on the line threatening to press charges. “What case?”

“Let’s start with Obstruction. During the investigation of Agent McGee, we had agents surveilling Ms. Scuito’s residence. Gibbs phoned local PD and tipped them that members of a human trafficking ring posing as FBI agents were about to abduct her.”

“How do you know it was Gibbs?”

Mueller sounded as though he was gritting his teeth when he replied, “He gave them his name.”

Soundlessly, Jenny slapped her palm to her forehead. “Director Mueller –”

“They called out SWAT,” he growled.

Fifteen minutes later, after finally convincing Director Mueller not to press charges, Jenny stormed past her startled assistant. “Cynthia, hold my calls. I’ll be busy murdering Agent Gibbs.”

≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈


Tony walked to Gibbs’ desk and held out his report. “So, Boss, do you think that we…” He trailed off, confused, as Gibbs suddenly stood, grabbed his cell phone and keys from the drawer, and walked past him. “Where are you going, Boss?”

Without turning around, Gibbs called back, “Anywhere but here!”

Tony turned towards McGee with a look of askance; McGee just shrugged. But behind him, Tony noticed Director Shepard marching down the stairs and she did not look happy. He glanced at Gibbs, who was pressing the button on the elevator as she hit the landing.

Spotting Tony standing by Gibbs’ vacant desk, she growled, “Where is he?”

Tony stalled for time. “Where is who?”

“You know damn well ‘who’ – where is Gibbs?”

Tony heard the elevator doors slide open and figured it was safe to say. He pointed to his right. “He’s just leaving, Director.”

He watched the Director’s angry stare shift to the elevator, and turned just in time to see the doors slide shut in front of Gibbs’ smirking face.




3.
Well-heeled museum patrons are fleeing through the double doors as the team arrives, as fast as they can in their designer gowns. Gibbs fights his way through the terrified crowds to the lone security guard trying to keep order.

“Where?” Gibbs demands.

“Second floor gallery,” the guard practically sighs, relieved to see help arrive. “Up those stairs and to the left.”

“Any other access?” Gibbs asks over the noise of the frightened patrons.

“The elevator. There’s a second stairwell, but it’s on the other end of the gallery.” The guard looks over his shoulder at the main staircase. “My partner was getting everyone out. She’s still up there with the Admiral and his daughter.”

Gibbs claps the guard on the shoulder. “Can you get my people access to the security cameras?” At the guard’s nod, he orders, “Tony, you and McGee go with him and let us know what we’re up against. Ziva and I will get into position at the top of the stairs.”

≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈


Gibbs and Ziva make their way to the stairs, stepping over shattered champagne glasses and hors d’oeuvres dropped in the panic as the fundraiser attendees ran from the sounds of gunfire. From the top of the stairs, they can hear the sounds of a woman crying and the Admiral pleading for the gunman to let her go.

Tony’s voice comes through their earpieces. “Gibbs, they’re in a room about 10 feet to your left, open onto the north side of the corridor. The elevator is on the south wall. Ramirez has the Admiral’s daughter at gunpoint. The Admiral and the security guard are just inside the room. No apparent casualties.”

Gibbs gestures to Ziva and they cross the landing to the north wall, silently making their way toward the scene. As they draw closer, the voices in the room become clearer.

“Please, just tell me what you want,” the Admiral pleads quietly.

“What I want,” Ramirez yells, “is my commission back, my wife back, and my family back. Can you do that, Admiral? Can you?”

“I’ll do anything I can for you, son.”

Ramirez laughs maniacally. “You can’t and you know it. And what I want to know is why you should get to have a family when I don’t?”

Reaching the end of the hall, Gibbs has to make a decision about how to handle this. He and Ziva can storm in, guns aimed, or he can try to talk to the former officer. Gibbs’ gut is telling him that Ramirez doesn’t care about his own life at the moment, so threatening it won’t be effective. He holsters his gun, gestures to Ziva to stay hidden, and walks around the corner with his palms open.

Ramirez starts, his arm tightening around the Admiral’s daughter’s shoulders. Gibbs quickly reassures him. “I’m unarmed, Commander. I’m Special Agent Gibbs, NCIS. I’m here to help you end this situation peacefully.”

“Peace?” Ramirez cries wildly. “There is no peace, Agent Gibbs. Not while this man is sending good people off to die.”

“Think about what you’re doing, Commander,” Gibbs says quietly, slowly advancing on Ramirez. “By all accounts, your wife was a good officer and a kind woman. Is this what Amelia would’ve wanted?

Ramirez grows more agitated at that. “Don’t you say her name! Don’t you say it!” He screams angrily, but tears roll down his cheeks.

≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈


“Damn it!” Tony paces the small security office. “Things are going downhill fast in there.”

Ziva looks into the nearest security camera and raises her gun with a questioning look. On the radio, Tony replies, “Negative. The hostages are between you and Ramirez.” She nods her understanding.

“Gibbs has gotten close to him,” McGee notes. “If we could create some kind of distraction… The elevator, maybe?”

“It’s a glass elevator, McGee. When the doors opened, there would be no cover. Anyone in there would be a sitting duck.”

McGee looks over his shoulder at Tony. “Who says there has to be anyone in there?”

≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈


“I just want him to suffer!” Ramirez yells, waving the gun in the direction of the Admiral.

“That’s not going to bring your wife back, Commander,” Gibbs replies softly, taking another step forward. “Trust me, I know.”

Ramirez turns the gun on Gibbs. “Stop it! Stay back!”

At that moment, the elevator bell rings and the doors begin to open. Ramirez swings the gun toward the sound and Gibbs moves in, grabbing the gun. He quickly subdues the gunman, who sobs loudly as Gibbs cuffs him. Ziva comes in and directs the hostages out of the room.

“Whose idea was the elevator?” Gibbs asks. Ziva shrugs in reply. “Well, remind me to thank ‘em.”




4.
His gun was pointed at the bastard’s head, and he was itching to shoot. This man didn’t deserve to live after what he’d done to those girls, and the chances were good that he was going to get away with it, hiding behind diplomatic immunity.

“Gibbs!” Tony snapped, but Gibbs refused to hear him. He stared the murdering son-of-a-bitch down, wanting him to know fear until the last second of his life. Gibbs knew he wouldn’t get away with shooting him in front of all these witnesses – not that he probably would’ve tried anyway. Some things were legal, and some things were right; Gibbs knew they weren’t always the same thing. He was willing to pay the consequences for doing the right thing.

“Damn it, Gibbs,” Tony muttered, stepping behind the diplomat’s son and into the line of fire. Gibbs didn’t flinch, his gun still trained right between the man’s eyes. Tony reached out and hit the elevator button, then cuffed the suspect. The doors slid open and Tony shoved him inside. He looked back at Gibbs as the door slid shut. “I’m sorry. I’m not letting you throw your life away.”




5.
“Jethro? Jethro, can you hear me?” Ducky’s worried tones penetrated the dense fog for a moment. “That’s it. Stay with me, old friend.”

Jimmy’s voice drifted in from somewhere in the distance. “The ambulance will be here in three minutes, Doctor Mallard.”

As the fog began to roll in again, Abby took his hand. “Don’t you die on me, Gibbs. Don’t you dare die.”

≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈


Tony stormed into the bullpen, barking out orders. “McGee, get me the security footage from the garage level, the camera closest to the elevators. Ziva, get down there and secure the scene.”

“I’ve got it on-screen.” McGee picked up the remote and the video footage began to play. Gibbs stepped out of the elevator, brisk and business-like as usual, and another man followed. They stepped out of camera range, but McGee let the video roll. Twenty seconds later, Gibbs stumbled back into the frame. He reached for the elevator button and when he pulled his hand back, the panel was covered in blood.

Tony shook his head. “Gibbs’ gut told him from the beginning something was off with Messina. CIA agents are never that cooperative with other agencies.”

“But why attack Gibbs?” McGee asked.

“You know Gibbs,” Tony replied. “The Director ordered him to work with Messina on Petty Officer Davies’ murder investigation, but he didn’t say anything about not looking into Messina’s background.”

McGee nodded in understanding. “Gibbs must’ve had something. Or at least have gotten close.”

Tony went to his desk and started gathering his things. “Messina has to know we’re on to him, and he’ll be making a run. Get a BOLO out, and alert the CIA. Then get down to the garage and help Ziva. We need to run this by the book.”

“Where are you going?”

Tony looked at him and McGee answered his own question with a nod. “To the hospital.”

≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈


“Any word, Abs?”

“Tony!” Abby jumped up from the waiting room chair and threw herself into Tony’s arms. “No,” she sniffled, “not yet.”

“He’s going to be okay,” Tony reassured her, stroking her pigtails. “He’s too ornery to die.”

“I know. It was just horrible, seeing him like that.”

Tony took her hand and led her back to the chairs. “I hate to do this, Abby, but I need to ask you what happened down in autopsy.”

Abby took a deep breath and steadied herself. “I was down collecting evidence samples from Ducky. I heard the bell on the elevator, but no one came in. I didn’t think anything about it until…”

“It’s okay,” Tony murmured, taking Abby’s hand. She fought back tears and continued.

“I picked up the samples and went to the elevator to go back to my lab. The doors had closed, but the elevator was still there. When I pressed the button and the doors opened, Gibbs was slumped in the corner. There was… there was a lot of blood.”

A new voice continued the story, and Tony looked up to find Ducky had arrived. “Abigail screamed, and we ran to see what the matter was. Mr. Palmer called for an ambulance while I administered what aid I could.”

“Was Gibbs conscious at all? Did he say anything to you?”

“I’m afraid not,” Ducky replied. “He was in and out of consciousness, but he didn’t have the strength to speak.”

“Miss Scuito?”

Abby bolted to her feet when the doctor arrived. “Yes?”

“Mr. Gibbs is out of surgery, and we’re confident he’ll make a full recovery.”

“Thank God!” Abby cried, exuberantly hugging Tony, Ducky, and the very surprised surgeon. “Can we see him?”

“He’s in recovery right now. One at a time, for a few minutes only.”

Tony smiled at Abby. “You go first.”

Ducky and Tony sat down in the waiting room as Abby followed the doctor down the hall. “Ziva tells me that Gibbs’ attack took place in the garage,” Ducky noted. “What I don’t understand is how he wound up in my elevator.”

Tony leaned back in the chair and sighed, able to release just a little of the tension he’d been carrying now that he knew Gibbs would survive. “An underground concrete garage, Ducky. No cell reception. He couldn’t call for help, so he went to where the help was.”

“A good thing, too,” Ducky said. “Had he lost any more blood, I doubt he would’ve survived the trip to the hospital.”

“Thanks for saving his life, Duck.”

Ducky smiled. “I thought we just agreed the elevator did that.”

The End

Comments

( 3 comments — Leave feedback )
sharp2799
Aug. 22nd, 2008 03:45 pm (UTC)
Yay! A gen Gibbs fic! Love the use of the elevator.
squeelated
Aug. 22nd, 2008 04:05 pm (UTC)
Thank you! I'm really glad you liked it!
lizbet0
Jan. 8th, 2009 03:07 am (UTC)
I don't actually watch the show, but I've read enough fanfic to have a rough understanding of the characters. This is a really fun & lovely series of fics! Thank you for writing them!
( 3 comments — Leave feedback )