Working Title: Ziva’s Bullet
Word Count: 1,545
Summary: The bullet Ziva fired inside a metal box did more damage than in canon. But not to Tony.
Warning: Major Character Death (not Tony)
A/N: This is set around the episode “Boxed In” when Ziva and Tony are locked in the storage container. It was written for the NCIS Bang for 2019 and I just got lost in how things were going. I was pantsing more than normal. I had a plot but it was very basic with few actual details and I just got tangled up. It has not been edited AT ALL. And I really have no motivation to continue it any time soon.
Tony looked at the DVD as he answered Ziva’s question. “Not liking it. Firing a bullet in here, it’s bound to richo-“
Tony’s words broke off as the sound of a gunshot followed by a metallic clang of a ricochet echoed through the storage container. He jerked as he felt the bullet hit his arm, and then more echoes as the bullet hit another metal wall and bounced off. Ziva grunted and fell on top of him as the ricochets stopped.
Tony glared at the woman on top of him. “As I was saying, there’s a good chance the bullet might ricochet and kill one of us.”
Ziva whispered. “Sorry.” And coughed.
Tony realized something was very wrong. Her mouth had blood in it. “Ziva?”
Ziva groaned but didn’t speak.
“Ziva can you roll over. I need to see.”
Ziva grunted but shifted her legs and then fell onto her side next to Tony as he pushed lightly. He levered himself up, wincing at the pain in his arm from the bullet wound, and grabbed his flashlight off the nearby crate. The lights shone on Ziva and the bloody wound in her neck. He yanked his coat off and prepared to press it to the wound and Ziva lifted a hand to stop him.
“Your objection was on peak. A ricochet from firing inside this box will kill one of us.” She pushed lightly at his hands, obviously already weakening from blood loss. “Keep warm. One of us should survive this coffin.”
“On point,” Tony murmured almost unconsciously.
“Even when I am dying, you correct my idioms.” Ziva smiled, the movement tight and grim.
Tony did his best to smile back, though he knew it was more like a grimace. “It’s our thing, don’t ya know. I correct your English, you tell me you could kill me with a paperclip.”
“You enjoy me being on the – back foot? That is it, yes?”
Tony nodded. “Yeah.” He respected her wishes and put his coat back on but his hands pressed to the wound on her neck. And then he felt more blood pulsing and reached a hand around to the back of her neck and found a gaping exit wound. “Back foot. I’d love to have you on your back anything.”
Ziva laughed. “Liar. You have seen through me from the moment we met. You just flirt but no follow through.”
Tony shrugged as he kept pressure on the wounds. “It’s my M.O.”
Ziva sighed. “You can not save me, Tony. Perhaps if we could have medical assistance right this moment, but we are trapped in this box. You cannot – McGee your way to stopping the bleeding. I know wounds. I will not survive more than a few more minutes. Between the bullet wound and the cold, my sense of pain is already less than it was.”
Tony huffed. “First of all, it’s MacGyver a way, not McGee a way but good attempt. Second of all, I have faith in the Boss. He’ll find us.”
Ziva nodded. “He will. But he will find my dead body and hopefully your live one.”
“I am a realist, Tony. Do not try to play a player. I know that one was right.”
Tony sighed and nodded. “I’m going to do my best to save you, but I won’t bullshit you.”
Tony walked into a conference room that was set up more like a cross between a courtroom and a Senate hearing room. He was in his best Zegna suit which was marred only by the sling his arm rested in.
At his side was his frat brother, Mark Charrington. Mark was a lawyer who specialized in federal law. Tony didn’t think it would be an issue at first but the whole debacle had really snowballed thanks to Ziva’s death and what happened after. And Mark didn’t want him to be railroaded in an attempt by anyone to cover their own asses.
As he approached the not-exactly-a-defendant’s table, Tony felt a prickle on the back of his neck and glanced behind himself. And just as he had thought, holding up a wall in the back corner of the room was Leroy Jethro Gibbs. Tony figured that between the fact that he already gave his testimony to the inquiry board and the favors he was owed by a number of powerful people, Gibbs would be allowed to stay and lurk in an otherwise closed session. Politics.
Around the room were seated a bit of a who’s who of federal agencies and Washington players bingo, as well as several more junior players in the game. In a normal inquiry into a major incident like this at NCIS, the director of said agency would be front and center at the head questioners’ table. But Director Shepard was not even close to being top dog at this dog and pony show. Her seat was actually on the far end of the table, to Tony’s left. Her seating betraying the other’s disdain for her and her decisions since taking her job.
To Director Shepard’s immediate left was the Department Head of NCIS Internal Affairs, Paul Larson. Moving down the line towards the center was the relatively new Secretary of the Navy, Philip Davenport. In the first center spot of the table was the Deputy Director of State, George Baker.
Tony supposed this was a little below the actual Secretary of State’s paygrade. Of course, it should have been below the Deputy Secretary’s pay grade, too. In a normal investigation of the death of an agent or liaison agent to an agency it would definitely not rise to such lofty governmental heights. But this had turned out to be nowhere approaching a normal investigation from the moment Tony got out of that shipping container.
On the other center chair was the Secretary of Defense, Robert Gates. Not his Assistant or Deputy but the man himself. Then again, he was Director Shepard’s boss’ boss. Whereas the State Department was not in NCIS’ chain of command.
To the SecDef’s left was the Judge Advocate General, Rear Admiral Gordon Cresswell. And after him was Tony’s former boss, Assistant Director Tom Morrow of Homeland Security. And on the far right side of the table from Tony’s perspective was the Assistant Director Leonard Jackson of the DC FBI office.
Looking up at the wall of suits and uniforms, Tony felt a bit sorry for Director Shepard, the lone female in this sea of testosterone. Even Tony and his lawyer, and of course the lurking Gibbs, were men.
The only other female in the room was the woman taking notes and recording testimony. Tony was sure she had a relatively high position and security clearance but it wasn’t exactly a high profile job. It was more of a faceless, seen-and-not-heard, don’t-speak-unless-spoken-to type of position.
But Madam Director had known what she was getting into when she accepted the job as head of an armed federal agency and who she would be surrounded by in higher positions, so to speak. She made her own bed and now, to internally mix his metaphors, her chickens were coming home to roost. Though based on her current facial expressions and body language, Tony didn’t think she was on the inside of the approaching shitstorm.
Tony and Mark sat at the smaller table set in front of the long one holding the bigwigs. The set up was similar to a Senate hearing room except the table were both level on the ground, rather than one being raised above and looking down on the other. And there were no dozens of cameras and microphones, or court benches filled with reporters and spectators. There were only three cameras recording, one facing Tony and Mark, the other two focusing on each half of the main table. And the microphones fed directly into the camera which was recording who would be talking into it. The tables were also closer together than in an actual Senate chamber. There would be no need for microphones to hear testimony or questions.
Shortly after Tony was seated and Mark had laid out a legal pad and pens for each of them, the Secretary of Defense banged a gavel lightly on the table and looked into the camera focused on his half of the table. “This is the inquiry board into the death of Mossad Officer Ziva David, acting liaison to the Naval Criminal Investigative Service. Currently under questioning is NCIS Special Agent Anthony DiNozzo. Agent DiNozzo is with representation by Mark Charrington, Esquire. Rear Admiral Cresswell will administer the truth oath and will begin questioning.”
Tony rose to his feet, placed his hand on the provided Bible, and spoke clearly. “I swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. So help me God.”
As Tony retook his seat, Admiral Cresswell nodded. “For the record, please state your full name, current occupation, and place of residence.”
Tony spoke, “Anthony Dominic DiNozzo, Jr. Currently the Senior Field Agent for NCIS’ Major Case Response Team in the Washington DC area. I am a resident of Falls Church, Virginia.”
“Thank you. Now, Agent DiNozzo, please explain what led you and Officer David to be at the docks on DATE.”