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A Cry for Help

by: Patricia (Send Feedback)

Series: - No Series - #1
Chapters: 039 Word Count: 112820
Rating: TEEN
Warning(s): Disturbing Imagery or Content
Character(s): Tony DiNozzo
Category(ies): Angst/Drama
Pairing(s): - No Pairing -
Summary: Tony's world is crashing down around him, but he doesn't believe his friends can help. He turns to someone unexpected for help, but will it be enough to save him?

Chapters: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39

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10

Tony couldn’t help but laugh when Abby told him about how she had talked Palmer into getting a tattoo. He could just see the ME’s assistant walking into the tattoo parlor, trying to decide on what to get and where to put it.

“So, what did he finally decide on?” Tony wanted to know.

“A skull and crossbones,” Abby answered. “Actually, he thought about getting a black lung, since that was his code name back when you…oops.”

“Oops?” What do you mean ‘oops’?”

“You didn’t want me to talk about work or anything like that. I shouldn’t have even mentioned Palmer’s name. I’m really, really, really sorry, Tony,” the Goth apologized profusely.

“Abs, it’s all right,” he assured her. “I’m not going to fall apart on you; I’m not that far gone.”

Truthfully, Tony knew that he had a very tenuous grip on his emotions, but he had to convince Abby otherwise. He couldn’t deal with her guilt on top of his own.

He had thoroughly been enjoying Abby’s ramblings. She had successfully taken his mind off his problems, at least temporarily, and for that he was grateful. Tony had just started to relax a little, but now the tension was back as the all too familiar pain in his stomach reared its ugly head. He gasped as he shifted slightly on the couch, attempting to find a more comfortable position.

Unfortunately, Abby had not missed the hitch in his breath and began to rapidly fire questions at him. “What’s wrong?” Tony, are you all right?” You’re in pain, aren’t you? Don’t you think you should call the doctor?”

“Abby, I’m all right. I’m just a little stiff and sore and I moved wrong. I’m fine, really.”

“You’re not fine, Tony,” she argued. “You might can fool Jack and you might be able to fool that doctor, but you know you can’t fool me.”

Tony weakly smiled. “I know, Abs.”

“Then why aren’t you being honest with me? Do I have to remind you about Abby’s rule number one?”

“No, y
ou don’t have to remind me.”

“Tony, you’re my best friend and I know when you’re hurting, and I’m not just talking about the physical pain that you are obviously in.”

He closed his eyes, listening and replaying Abby’s words in his mind. Tony knew that she was right. He had always been able to open up to Abby, but this was different. How could he begin to tell Abby what was bothering him when he didn’t fully understand it himself?”

“Tony, are you still there?” Abby nervously asked.

Tony sighed, silently chastising himself for zoning out. “Yeah, I’m here Abby. I was just…”

“Thinking about what you were going to tell me?”

“Not really.”

“Tony, please,” she pleaded once again.

Blinking back the tears that threatened to fall, Tony refused to allow himself the luxury of crying. He could remember only crying two times in his life; once when he found his mother’s body and the second time was after Paula Cassidy had been killed. Showing his feelings had never been easy for Tony and now was no exception. He expertly hid beside the façade of a frat boy in order to keep people at arm’s length. However, Abby was one of the few people that had seen behind his mask and yet, she had remained by his side regardless of his attempts to push her away.

He swallowed hard, ignoring the lump that had developed in his throat. “I’m tired, Abs.”

“I know Tony, but if you would just…”

“No Abby, you don’t understand. I’m tired. I’m just so tired of everything.”

“What do you mean?”

Abby was ready to listen but Tony was at a loss of words. “I don’t know…where to start.”

“Just take your time,” she urged.

“I can’t go on like this, Abs. I can’t go on living a lie. I don’t know what’s wrong with me; I can’t seem to get my act together. Once I came back from the Seahawk, I thought things would be back to normal, but so far, it’s been anything but normal.”

“What’s been going on?”

“I can’t tell you that, at least not yet.”

“Does this have something to do with Director Vance?” Abby guessed.

Tony pinched the bridge of his nose. “Abby, why would you say that?”

“Because I know that he’s been sending you mysterious emails and that he’s desperate to find you.”

“You’ve been going through my emails?” Tony knew that his sharp tone probably caught Abby by surprise.

He shook his head in frustration, wincing as the pounding in his head intensified. Tony should have known that Gibbs would have ordered the others to search his hard drive. It wouldn’t be long before Gibbs figured out exactly what was going on.

“Oops,” Abby said again. “I guess I shouldn’t have mentioned that.”

“That’s all right, Abby. I’m sure that you were just following Gibb’s instructions.”

“He’s worried about you, Tony. We all are.”

It wasn’t his intention to cause his teammates concern; Tony certainly didn’t believe that he was worth the effort. He had just wanted to get away for a while and decide if he could continue living that life that had been forced upon him since his return from his posting as Agent Afloat.

“Abby,” he whispered. “I think I want out.”

“What?”

He could hear the slight tremble in her voice. Tony wished that he could take back what he had just said; he really didn’t know why he even said it. He had no idea what he wanted right now.

“Forget it,” he quickly said. “I’m just tired; I don’t even know why I said that.”

“Oh, no you don’t,” Abby gently admonished. “You’re not getting off that easily, Tony.”

“Let it go, Abs,” he begged.

“I can’t. You either start talking or I’m driving up to Stillwater right now,” she threatened.

Tony knew that she wasn’t bluffing. He had played poker with Abby enough to know that she very seldom bluffed. Taking a deep breath, he said, “I think…I think it’s time I left NCIS.”

“Tony, you can’t be serious,” Abby replied. “I mean you love your job. We finally got you back from the Seahawk and now you decide that you want to leave? That doesn’t make sense!”

“I’ve been with NCIS six years longer than I have any other job, Abs. It’s probably past time I moved on,” he tried to reason.

“Tony, you can’t just leave.”

Tony felt something snap inside him as his resolve began to crumble. “Abby, I’m kind of getting tired of people telling me what I can and can’t do,” he growled. “I’ve reached my limit! I can’t keep going between working for Gibbs and working for Vance. I’m being pulled in so many different directions that I feel like that there’s nothing left of Tony DiNozzo! I don’t even want to be Tony DiNozzo any more. He’s nothing but a disappointment to everyone around him!”

He cursed under his breath. Tony couldn’t believe that he had just let the proverbial cat out of the bag. He had just admitted that he was working for Vance. Hopefully, Abby wouldn’t catch his slip up, but he knew that she would eventually put two and two together.

“That’s not true!” she tearfully protested. “You’ve never been a disappointment to me or to any of the others.”

“Really?” Tony forced himself to sit up on the couch. He gritted his teeth against the pain, hating his own weakness. “Then answer a few questions for me, Abs,” he grunted. “Tell me why Gibbs still blames me for Jenny’s death. Why hasn’t he head slapped me since I’ve been back? Why does McGee look at me like I’m not worthy to be the gum on the bottom of his shoe? Why does Ziva not want to be partnered with me anymore? Why does Vance think I’m expendable?”

Tony abruptly stopped his tirade. He had said too much. His head now ached with an intensity that he had never experienced before. Tony dropped the phone and clutched his head. Sliding off the couch, he cried out in pain. He could hear Abby screaming at him through the phone, but his body was shaking so badly that he couldn’t answer her.

The last thing that he remembered was someone turning him on his side and Dr. Marshall calling out to him. What was happening to him? Why couldn’t he control his own body any longer? Was this how his life was going to end? Was he ready to die or were there too many things left unsaid? Tony would have to wait for the answers to his questions; he couldn’t hold his eyes open any longer, succumbing to the blissfulness of darkness.


XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX


Katherine Marshall sat across from the table from Jackson Gibbs, sipping on a cup of coffee. After getting off the phone with Jethro Gibbs, she had decided to check on her patient. When she got there, Jack had informed her that Tony was talking on the phone to one of his friends, so she decided not to interrupt them. Jack had insisted that she stay for a cup of coffee and a game of chess and she had readily accepted.

“I’ve had the pleasure of talking with your son,” she said as she studied the board, trying to decide her next move.

Jack grinned. “Leroy? I bet you had an interesting conversation.”

“Well, he hung up on me the first time and then called me back. Despite his lack of phone etiquette, he seemed genuinely worried about Tony.”

“That boy in there is like a son to Leroy, although I’m not sure that he’d ever admit it.”

“I’m just hoping that when your son gets here, that he can talk Tony into going to the hospital.” She moved her knight and said, “Check.”

“Leroy’s coming here?”

“You seemed surprised.”

“Well, I knew he would come. I just thought he’d give Tony a few days to himself. That boy in there is in a world of hurt.”

“I know. But until he starts feeling better physically, he can’t begin to heal emotionally. It’s your move,” she reminded him.

“Don’t rush me.”

Katherine sighed impatiently, waiting for the older man to make his move. “Any day now, Jack,” she taunted.

“I said…”

She never heard Jack’s reply. A strangled cry and a crash emitted from the room that Tony was occupying. The two of them ran in the room to find Tony writhing on the floor, his body wracked with tremors. “Get him on his side, Jack. It looks like he’s having a seizure of some kind.”

Katherine knelt beside Tony and called out to him. “Tony? Tony, can you hear me? It’s Doctor Marshall.”

His eyes were unfocused and dilated and a trickle of blood was running out of the corner of his mouth. “He must have bit his tongue,” she mumbled to herself.

Glancing over her shoulder, she heard someone yelling through the phone. “Jack, tell Tony’s friend that you’ll call her back and go get my bag,” she instructed.

She kept a hand on Tony’s shoulder and quietly encouraged him. “It’s okay, Tony. I know you’re probably scared right now, but it will be over soon.” Looking at her watch, she mentally figured that it had been close to two minutes now and Tony wasn’t showing any sign of stopping.

The doctor grabbed her bag from Jack and prepared a syringe of Valium and quickly injected it in Tony’s hip. Within a couple of minutes, the tremors had subsided to an occasional twitch and Tony had lost consciousness. As she sat there monitoring the young man, she heard Jack on the phone trying to calm Tony’s friend.

“He’s all right, Abby. I promise, sweetheart. The doctor’s here with him. He had some kind of seizure, but he’s resting now. I’ll call you back in a little bit,” he promised. “Bye.”

Katherine pulled out her own phone and requested an ambulance. “Looks like you’re going to the hospital the hard way, Tony.”

She hung up at the same time Jack did. “The ambulance is on its way. I’m going to ride in with him.”

“I’ll be there as soon as I lock up,” Jack said.

“All right,” she agreed. “You might want to call your son and tell him to come to the hospital.”

“I will.”

Within a few minutes, the ambulance had arrived and Tony was heading for the hospital. Katherine frowned as she took his blood pressure. It was too low, which could indicate that he was bleeding internally. Tony hadn’t regained consciousness yet, but she hadn’t really expected him to. Sometimes when people had seizures, they would sleep for several hours afterwards or in extreme cases, for several days.

The ambulance pulled up to the hospital. As Tony was ushered into the emergency room on the gurney, Katherine began spouting orders to the nurses. She was determined to find out what was wrong with her patient, knowing that if she didn’t have something substantial to tell Jethro Gibbs, there would be hell to pay.


XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX


Jack slammed the phone down in frustration. This had made the third time that he had called Leroy and each time he had gotten a recording. He decided to go ahead and call Abby back, hoping that she could get in touch with his son. Jack dialed the number that Abby had hastily given him and waited for her to answer. She picked up on the first ring.

“Hello? Jack?”

“It’s me, Abby,” he answered.

“How’s Tony? Please tell me he’s going to be all right.”

“He’s been taken to the hospital and I don’t know anything else,” he informed her. “Katherine thinks he had a seizure and I’m sure that now she’s got him in the hospital that she will be running some tests to find out exactly what’s going on.”

“He’s never had a seizure before,” Abby said. “Oh my gosh! What if I caused him to have one? I shouldn’t have pushed him to talk. He was fine before I started demanding...” Abby sniffled. “Poor Tony! I’m coming up.”

“There’s nothing you can do up here. Why don’t you wait until you know something more?” he suggested.

“Because if our situations were reversed, Tony would be by my side no matter what!”

“I’m not disputing that,” Jack said. “I tell you what, why don’t you find Leroy? Dr. Marshall asked me to get hold of him, but I’m not having any luck.”

“Okay,” she agreed. A few seconds later, she stated, “I found him.”

Puzzled, Jack asked, “You found him?”

“Yep,” she said. “He just walked in.”


XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX


Jethro Gibbs wheeled into the parking lot of the Leisure Lanes Bowling Alley. He had known that once he told Abby not to use any of her personal phones to call Tony, that she would have either come to the bowling alley or to the convent. Since it was Monday night, his choice was easy. Sister Rosita wouldn’t miss league night.

He walked in the front door and the manager pointed towards his office. Nodding his thanks, he walked in to hear Abby say, “I found him.”

He took the phone from her and answered it. His eyes met her worried gaze as he said, “Gibbs.”

“Leroy? I’ve been trying to get in touch with you,” his dad said. Gibbs could hear a hint of irritation in his voice.

“What’s wrong?”

“Tony’s in the hospital,” Jack began. “He was talking to Abby and he had a seizure. Katherine called an ambulance and he should be at the hospital by now.”

Gibbs felt sick. Was he too late to help Tony? “I’ll be there as soon as I can.” Gibbs hung up the phone and held his arms out. Abby fell against him and started to sob.

“It’s all right, Abs,” he soothingly whispered. “I’m sure that he’ll be all right.”

“It’s all my fault, Gibbs,” she cried. “He didn’t want to talk and I kept pushing him. Next thing I know he was shouting and then I heard him yell out like he was in pain, and…”

The team leader kissed her on her forehead. “He’ll be okay, Abs.”

Abby shook her head. “I don’t think so, Gibbs. Did you know that he’s thinking about leaving NCIS?”

“He won’t, Abs,” he promised her. “I won’t let him.”

“I don’t know, Gibbs. He was so sad and then he got mad. I can’t explain it.”

Gibbs put his arm around her and guided her out of the office and towards his car. “Why don’t you tell me everything that happened?”

“But you need to get to Stillwater.”

“You’re coming with me. We’ll go by your house and you can grab what you need.”

“Don’t need to,” she grinned, wiping away her tears. My bag’s in my car and Mac will let me park my hearse here, even though he says it’s bad for business.”

Gibbs should have known that Abby would have been ready at a moment’s notice. She and Tony were close and short of dying herself, nothing would have kept her from his side.

“Let’s go then.”

He saw Abby look around for his car. “Over here, Abs,” he called out as he opened the door for her.

“This isn’t your car,” Abby observed.

“Nope.”

“Rental?”

“Sorta.”

“I know this car. It’s Fornell’s,” she exclaimed.

“Yep.”

“Smart Gibbs, very smart. Tony would be proud of your sneakiness.”

The two of them began their journey towards Stillwater. He would never admit it, but Gibbs dreaded going to the hospital. The last time he had set foot in Stillwater General was when his mom died and he was not looking forward to facing those demons once again. But, for Tony, he would do what he had to in order to help his agent, even if forced his own memories to resurface.





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