Series: - No Series - #1
Chapters: 001 Word Count: 683
Warning(s): Character Death, Disturbing Imagery or Content, Violence
Category(ies): Angst/Drama, Episode Related
Pairing(s): - No Pairing -
Episode(s): 2-23 Twilight, 3-01 Kill Ari (1), 3-02 Kill Ari (2)
Summary: Five ways the events surrounding Ari's return didn't unfurl. Not a nice ficlet.
Kate doesn't die.
This is how it happens instead.
Kate takes a deep breath and staggers, lightheaded from the pain of a broken rib. The bullet whistles past her ear, and the three of them drop to the ground, sighting for the sniper. No more bullets chase them, and they never spot the culprit.
When they climb down from the roof to continue the chase, they find McGee with a bullet through his brain.
Abby's a wreck, even moreso when she has a close call with a bullet. A short while later, Gibbs spots Ducky heading out of the building.
They take Ari out before Ducky even gets out of the car. A successful team effort--team, that is, minus one.
Kate raises her hand to take a swing at Tony, and the bullet takes most of her bicep and shatters the humerus. It's a close thing, so much bleeding, but Tony ties a tourniquet while Gibbs sweeps the area around them. The ambulance arrives within minutes, speeds her to the hospital, but while she'll live, Kate's never going to work protection detail again.
A few days later, a cocky Mossaud agent, David, arrives at the office, full of protestations of Ari's innocence. The evidence stacks against him, however, and when Gibbs' finally convinces her of the truth, they lay a trap.
Gibbs is glad he decided to keep the Sig. He steps over Ari's body to close Ziva's eyes, thinking about the nature of family.
Kate takes a bullet to the vest, but before they can stand around joshing with relief, McGee is calling for help. They race down the fire escape and get him out of the line of fire.
That night, with Gibbs in a fever to track down Ari, they're all working overtime. Tony brings some shells down to Abby's lab, taking a moment to flirt and banter like they always do.
He's so in shock from her blood splashing across his face, her pale, perfect forehead marred by a tiny hole, that he doesn't even feel the second bullet drive the air from his lungs.
Gibbs disappears for three days. He comes back to make sure his resignation letter has been accepted and to collect his stuff. He's on the way to visit Tony when McGee chokes out the question they've been afraid to ask.
Gibbs assures him they'll never have to worry about Ari again.
Kate takes a bullet to the vest, and they stand around joking in relief. McGee calls up that things are clear, and they go about working the scene.
After the fourth unanswered call to Ducky's cell to see what the hell is taking so long, Gibbs tosses his phone at the wall and goes to find out.
The cops are already on the scene when he gets there.
The van is on its side, but it's obvious Ducky and Jimmy were dead before it went out of control.
Ari shows up outside NCIS itself later that night,
wholly entranced in his scope as he wavers between Abby and Tony.
Even Ducky wouldn't have been able to tell which bullet was the killing shot--Kate's or Gibbs'.
Kate doesn't die.
Not right away. A wind kicks up and she tosses her head back, flipping the hair out of her face. The bullet rips through her throat, nicking her jugular and tearing her trachea. Her eyes are wide and frightened as Tony and Gibbs try to save her, but there's nothing anyone can do.
Later, that night, as Tony comforts Abby in the lab, they're taken out by a single shot.
Gibbs takes off, cold and silent, leaving McGee and Ducky to sort their shock and grief by themselves. When the call from Gerald comes in, Ducky doesn't hesitate to do what he has to do.
Unfortunately, Ari isn't feeling generous. He leaves their bodies as a present for Gibbs, no bows but with ribbons of drying red.
There's a bomb. Gibbs smiles as he goes out, because Ari goes with him.
Years later, McGee's memoir is a critical success.
He'd rather be an unpublished hack.