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by: Mardahin (Send Feedback)
Series: - No Series - #1
Chapters: 001 Word Count: 2149
Character(s): Jethro Gibbs, Tony DiNozzo
Category(ies): Crossover, Established Relationship
Crossover Shows: Stargate: Atlantis
Summary: A crossover with Stargate Atlantis, set in late 2006. "Tony hated desk duty..."
Author Notes: Written for Alexi's birthday, and set in a slightly AU version of the SGA universe (Bridges), where Atlantis broke with Earth after "The Return" (3x10) and most of the expedition members got left behind in the shuffle. While reading the rest of that series is helpful, it's not essential. I'm new to the NCIS field, so con-crit is always welcome.
"I need to speak to a Lieutenant Laura Cadman."* * *
Tony hated desk duty. Hated it with a passion. Hated being stuck in, even though he knew he was freeing up the rest of the team for legwork. Hated the injury that had him tied to the desk for the next week. Hated the fact that this was his sixth phone call, and he still hadn't been able to track down Staff Sergeant Atkins' former CO. The marine had died in a training accident, ten weeks after transferring to the Warfighting Laboratory at Quantico, and Gibbs wanted background. What Gibbs wanted, Gibbs got.
Tony sat up straighter, and clicked open his pen as the person on the other end of the line returned; something in the tone was different, promising. "Oh really? Cheyenne Mountain? Do you have a number?" He jotted down the digits, then read them back. "Thank you. Thank you very much." He dialed the new number, and repeated his query. "This is Agent DiNozzo, NCIS. I need to speak to Lieutenant Laura Cadman."
"One moment." Tony settled back into his chair again, absently doodling on the pad sitting on his desk.
There was a clicking sound on the phone, and a new voice came on. "Agent DiNozzo?"
"I understand you're trying to contact Lieutenant Laura Cadman, is that correct?"
"Yeah, that's right. I called McMurdo, and they gave me your number. Who am I talking to?"
"Chief Master Sergeant Walter Harriman. McMurdo, ah, of course. Well, I'm sorry to have to tell you this, sir, but Lieutenant Cadman is currently MIA."
Tony blinked; that wasn't at all what he'd been expecting, although it certainly explained the run-around. "I'm sorry, did you say MIA? As in, Missing In Action?"
"But she was stationed to Antarctica."
"What happened, she fall into a crevasse?"
"I'm not at liberty to say."
"Not at liberty to-You know what? I don't want to know. What about her CO last year?"
There was a pause, and Tony could hear typing in the background. "That would be Major Evan Lorne."
Tony clicked on the relevant link in Cadman's online personnel brief. "Major Evan Lorne. Right. Where's he currently stationed?"
"Unfortunately, the major is also listed as being Missing In Action."
"You don't say. What's his excuse, bludgeoned to death by penguins?"
"I'm really not at liberty to say, sir."
Tony sighed, and scanned the major's short-file on his computer. "OK, Antarctica's a small base. What about Lorne's CO? I have a Lieutenant Colonel John Sheppard?" He squinted at the screen, but no, the writing didn't change. Air Force, both of them. That was, well, odd.
"I, uh..." There was a muffled choking sound, and Tony could hear shouting in the background. Something about a General O'Neill. Before Tony could ask, however, the chief was back on the line. "Colonel Sheppard? I'm, I'm not sure that would be such a good idea, sir."
"Let me guess, he's MIA, too."
"No, no. Colonel Sheppard's just AWOL, sir."
Tony blinked. "AWOL. As in, ran off into the snow in an attempt to seek vengeance for the death of his 2IC at the hands of rabid penguins?"
"No, that was Leftenant Carmichael and Doctor Karkarova. Colonel Sheppard, well... It's a long story." Tony heard a siren go off in the background, followed by more shouting. "I'm very sorry, sir. Please feel free to call if you have any other questions." There was a click, and Tony was left staring at the phone. Great. He punched in another number from memory.
"Atkins' COs? MIA. Every last one. Well, unless you count the one that's AWOL. Got bounced all over the place, before some guy at Cheyenne Mountain was even able to tell me that much."
Tony could hear the frown through the phone. "I thought his last posting was in Antarctica?"
"It was. You get anything from the interviews?"
"According to his current CO, there's something 'not quite right about those damn Antarctic boys', but he didn't elaborate. The best friend's giving off more mixed signals than the Andrews Control Tower, but I can't figure out what they mean. I've got Ziva and McGee out looking over the incident site again. You follow up on that unidentified number out in California?"
"Well, what are you waiting for? Call me when you do. And check with Abby, see if she's got the results of the tox-screen back."
"On it, Boss." Tony set the phone down, and began hunting around for the list of phone numbers again. God, he missed schlepping around a swamp in the middle of a thunderstorm. Well, that might be stretching it, but it was close. It seemed to be getting closer every time he picked up the phone.
"So I checked out the number, turns out its his shrink. A Dr. Katherine Heightmeyer, specializes in Combat Fatigue and stress management disorders. She's not taking new patients, I asked."
"Very funny, DiNozzo."
"Well, I thought so. Oh, you were right about something being off about Atkins; the guy's got a bunch of scars that don't match his medical record, and I'm talking nasty stuff - electrical burns, a couple of stab wounds, and a GSW. Nothing since the new posting, but also nothing over two years old. Ducky's having a field day, said he'll call you direct once he's finished cataloging it all."
"Abby found a foreign chemical in his system. Some kind of neurotransmitter. I didn't catch the details, but it's not matching anything in the database. It's driving her nuts."
"I'll bet it is. Right now, I need to you track down a Staff Sergeant Eugene Bates for me. The best friend mentioned him as a CO, but he's not on either of their records - I want to know who he is, and where they worked together. And I want you to pull the paperwork on Atkins' benefits, see if the wife is getting anything we didn't already know about."
"Why? It was a training accident, right?"
"Just do it. There's something else going on here, and the sooner we get it sorted out, the better."
"On it, Boss." There was a distinctive click, and Tony hung up. Twenty minutes later, he had the details of Atkins' death benefits, and not much else. As he leaned down to pull something out of one of his drawers, he heard someone clear their throat.
Tony looked up warily, and found himself facing an Air Force officer. No, make than an Air Force General
. Two stars. One more point to Gibbs' gut, there was definitely
something strange going on. "Yes..."
"I'm Major General Jack O'Neill. I need all of your files on the death of Staff Sergeant Atkins, and I need them now."
Tony blinked, and pushed away from his desk, standing up. "Now wait just a minute-"
"Did I give you the impression that I was asking?" Tony's phone rang, and he looked down to see the lab extension flashing on the caller ID. The general must have sent somebody down to collect the data from Abby. Tony could see where this was going, and he didn't like it.
"And did I give you the impression I took orders from the Air Force?" Tony carefully slid his cell phone out of his pocket, flipped it open and sent Gibbs a 911 text message; he could only hope that his boss would get the point. There was only so far you could push some of this political bullshit, and he knew he was already treading on thin ice, but something about this felt wrong
. "It's called NCIS for a reason, you know. Naval
Criminal Investigative Service."
"You do now, at least in this case. Air Force and Navy are both DOD, and the Joint Chiefs have given me discretionary jurisdiction over the incident."
Tony blinked. "You're kidding, right? Since when does the Air Force care about a Marine Corps staff sergeant."
"I'll bet." Tony was saved from doing something really
stupid by the ringing of his cell phone. The caller ID read Gibbs, and Tony breathed a sigh of relief. So totally not his problem
anymore. Thank God. Shooting the general a carefully apologetic look, and promptly turning his back, Tony flipped open the phone. "DiNozzo."
"What's going on? Abby called, said something about someone taking her evidence, and my reception cut out. Then I got your message."
"Well, Boss, I've got an Air Force General here who seems to think that he's taking over our case."
There was a pause, and Tony began a silent countdown. "Put him on the line."
Tony turned back to the general, and held out the cell phone. "My boss. You want anything from me, you convince him, first. That's how we work here."
The general gave him a long look, then took the phone. "This is Major General Jack O'Neill." He turned, walking to the end of the aisle. "I'm sorry, that's classified. No, that's not going to happen. I report directly to the Joint Chiefs. Yes, that's right." There was a pause, and Tony didn't even bother to pretend he wasn't paying attention; it wasn't his
fault the general thought he was out of earshot. "I appreciate that. I, yes. I think I can swing that. No. Look, this is personal for me. No, I can't elaborate. I don't have to explain myself to you, but I give you my word - it'll be taken care of. Right." The general walked back to Tony's desk, and held out the phone. "Talk."
"Give him what he wants, DiNozzo."
Tony resisted the urge to pout. Barely. It was never as effective on the phone, not that it actually worked on Gibbs. "Yes, Boss." He hung up, and put on his most saccharine smile. "So, General O'Neill, what can I do for you?"
"Well, the first thing you can do is call down to the lab and tell your analyst to un-lose her samples."
"Ah, yeah, about that..."
* * *
As had become habit, Tony stopped by the kitchen for a beer on his way to the basement. He considered it telling that Gibbs had started stocking his favorite brand, but like everything else about their relationship, he was careful not to read too much into the action. Bottle in hand, he descended into the workroom. Gibbs was kneeling, running his hands over one of the supports and doing, well, something. Tony wasn't always sure what it was Gibbs was looking at/for when working on the boat, but he knew if he asked, Gibbs would tell him. It was enough to know that the offer stood.
"Spit it out."
Tony startled, and took the last few steps down to sit on the lower landing. "Did anything about today's case seem strange to you?"
Gibbs shifted, and turned to look at Tony. "Strange is relative."
Tony took a long sip of his beer. "Oh, I don't know. The fact that the Military Appropriations Committee's pet general showed up out of the blue and confiscated all of our case notes? Or maybe the fact that the Joint Chiefs backed him up
Gibbs stood, and picked up a glass of amber liquid on his way over to the stairs. "Tony. Let it go."
"Leave it." Gibbs' tone was sharp, and Tony looked away, concentrating instead on peeling away the label on his beer. After a moment, Gibbs sighed and took a long sip of his drink. Bourbon, by the smell. "Let me ask you something. You've been at NCIS a while now. Under what circumstances would survivor's benefits be denied to a widow?"
Tony paused in his destruction of the label, thinking through the options. "Wait, he was a suicide?"
Gibbs shrugged, and drained the rest of his glass. "Sometimes, it's better not to look too hard at things."
"That was why you asked about the wife. You knew, didn't you?"
Gibbs stood, ignoring the question. "Let's get some sleep. It's been a long day."
Tony frowned, but followed as Gibbs led the way up the stairs, killing the power when they reached the door. It wasn't until they'd reached the kitchen that he spoke again, folding his arms gently around the older man's waist. "He agreed to rule it accidental if you turned it over, didn't he."
Gibbs stilled, then set his glass down on the counter. "Atkins married her because of the child, and then couldn't see a way out. I don't approve of the choice, but no child should have to grow up knowing they caused their father's death. O'Neill agreed."
Tony opened his mouth to ask, but thought better of it. Gibbs was right, there were some things it was better not to know. And sometimes, you just had to let them go.
~ Finis ~
MTAC - NCIS Fic