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by: silverfoxfiles (Send Feedback)
Series: - No Series - #1
Chapters: 002 Word Count: 7067
Warning(s): Character Death
Category(ies): Alternate Universe, Angst/Drama, General, New Character, Suspense
Pairing(s): - No Pairing -
Summary: When Jeanne Benoit enacts revenge on NCIS, some hidden treasures emerge that will change everything and everyone. Ensemble fic, pairs TBA.
Author Notes: Spoilers:Speculation for NCIS Judgment Day.
Disclaimer: Not ours. Wish they were! We only own the characters ya never met before.
Since my co-author can't write anything with adult themes at work, this fic was born! It'll be run side by side with out others and does contain speculation about the NCIS season finale. I don't know where we're going with the pairings yet, so for now this will go to the slash lists as well. When pairings are defined, we'll revise. We'll have at least ONE slash pairing but we haven't worked out who yet ;)
Chapters: 1 | 2
Hidden Treasures Ch 1
Jen Shepard stared at her own mortality as the woman came closer, waving her gun. “You don’t want to do this, Jeanne. You don’t need to be like him.” Jen’s own weapon was trained on Jeanne, but she would not pull the trigger unless necessary.
“Shut up. I know what I’m doing.”
“No you don’t. There’s a boy you could get to know. I know someone related to you. You don’t need to go down this road, Jeanne. You’re too young to die. You have more family out there. I can introduce you, make it happen.”
“You killed my father!” Jen caught her breath as the woman suddenly took aim. Jenny fired her entire clip, emptying the bullets into the woman, but it was too late. A stab at mercy had caused her own death.
As the first bullet ripped into hr flesh, Jenny said a quick prayer. As her blood flowed from multiple mortal wounds, she said silent apologies to those she loved. As she took her last breath, her thoughts were with the two most important people in her life—her children.
Jax Shepard had a very bad feeling about this. When kids got pulled out of class, it was usually because they’d gotten into some sort of trouble, but he was a by the books guy. He had to be, both for his mother’s sanity and his own. When he saw Sasha coming from the elementary school section, Jax quickened his pace. He didn’t want his little sister to deal with this, whatever it was, before he did.
He supposed his sister could have gotten into trouble, but she was as by the books as he was. Maybe she was sick? God, he hoped that was all it was. But the sinking feeling in his stomach and the panic rising inside him told another story.
“Stay right here, Sash. Let me figure this out.” He squeezed his sister’s hand, kissed the top of her head, and walked into the headmaster’s office after getting a nod from the secretary.
“Oh fuck.” He didn’t mean to say the words, his mom would have swatted him, but…
Jax took in the room. Eliza, sobbing up a storm, the two guys and the woman who had to be from NCIS, his headmaster’s sympathetic sad look. He finally locked eyes on the oldest guy, a tall one with green eyes. “What happened? What hospital? Can we see her or should Sasha stay here?”
But the guy winced and Jax knew. “No! Please…no. Eliza? Eliza? Please…tell me… No… God…not Mom.” It was every cliché in the book, but he just wanted to tell her he loved her, to hug her, to tell her what a great mom she was. Is!
Eliza stood and moved to him, but he put his hands up, shaking his head. He wasn’t ready to be touched, especially not from someone who was a second mom to him. He swiped at the tears running down his face. He didn’t have time for them. Not when he was the adult for now. Not when he had to break this to Sasha. God, Sasha. She was just a little girl!
“Okay…I know protocol. I need to see Gibbs or Fornell. None of you are them, right? We don’t go anywhere until I see credentials that say one of those three names, okay? And someone better tell me what the heck happened to her. And what I’m supposed to tell my sister.”
“Jax, I’m Special Agent Tony DiNozzo. I’m really sorry that we have to do this here.” Tony felt awful for the kid, he was trying to be strong, but he was still just a boy. Never should have come to this point. Jenny was a good woman, and didn’t deserve what happened to her. But she’d done a good job of making sure her kids weren’t targets. Not even Gibbs had known about them. “Special Agent Gibbs is on his way, we’re just here to make sure that you and your sister are safe. We expected Sasha to be with you, she should be on her way, and we’ll get you two and Eliza out of here. We have a safe house waiting for you three.”
“Sasha’s…she’s right outside.” Jax watched as the woman went to the door, looked out, and nodded and he turned to look at the guy. “Mr. DiNozzo, I understand that you were the one with Jeanne, right? I was flled in on some of the details…from my mom” He extended his hand. “Jasper Shepard, Jax, for short. You have to tell me…did she…” He looked up at the ceiling. “What happened? Was it an accident? Did she have a heart attack or something? Please…God, tell me it wasn’t related to NCIS.”
He realized he was still grasping the other man’s hand almost in a death grip and dropped it, looking into the guy’s eyes for answers he wasn’t sure he wanted to know.
“Look, I’m sixteen and I have a sister out there. Don’t sugarcoat and don’t protect me, please. I have to know what we’re dealing with.” Was a safe house standard procedure? Course it wasn’t. He could reason that out.
“She was killed, huh? Targeted? Because of her position or was it personal? Is Sash in danger? Is this related to the Benoit thing?”
“What do you know about the Benoit thing?” Tony latched right onto the name of the family that had caused so much heartache. “If you know something, you need to tell us. I’ll be straight up with you but you need to return the favor. Your mom was shot, it was well planned, and we tried like hell to save her. When we get you to a safe spot, we’ll tell you more. I’m so sorry Jax, to have to be the one to tell you all of this. But you and Sasha, you’re going to be taken care of. You’re part of our family, and we take care of each other. Your mom knew that, and in the end, it made things easier for her. She didn’t want to leave you two.”
“I know she didn’t,” Jax said softly. “I should probably wait for Gibbs but I guess time is of the essence. I know as much about the Benoit thing as anyone should, more even. I’m invested. About seventeen and a half years ago, my mom was seduced by Rene Benoit. Or raped, depending on how honest she was at any given moment. I came around nine months later. Don’t give me that look please, Mr. DiNozzo. I’m not his son. There is no way I’m his son. I may have his blood but he was nothing to me and I’m glad he’s gone. I’m a Shepard through and through. I don’t acknowledge or claim that terrorist as anything.”
There was so much in the other guy’s eyes, sadness, compassion, pain. Jax was breathing hard, trying not to cry again. “Someone murdered my mom in cold blood. That’s what you’re telling me. Someone targeted my mom. Who was just trying to save and change the world. Was it personal? Or was it because of her position? Family or not…Sash and I only have one another now. Much as you guys want to help, it’s not the same. They’re going to pull my sister away, put her somewhere. Alone. I can’t let that happen, sir.”
“You are the director’s son, doesn’t matter to me who your father was. I’m a firm believer that your parentage isn’t the end all in what kind of person you are. I knew your mom and I don’t believe she would have raised you to be like Rene Benoit. She was a better woman then that.” Tony hadn’t even considered that they’d try to break the kids up. Not with them being under NCIS protection for the near future.
“Sasha is going with us, no one will take her away from you. We have strict orders to take the two of you and your nanny into protective custody. No one is going to argue with my badge, and they can’t split you up without my say so, which isn’t going to happen. You’ve got to trust me, we want you two together and will make it happen.”
“She is. Don’t do that. Don’t talk about her in the past. God….please don’t do that. Don’t make it real. Not yet. Let me…deal.” Jax swallowed another sob back. “And don’t tip Sash off. She’s too smart…”
“With all respect for my language, sir, you’re damn right I’m her son through and through. I do not and will not even claim that psychopath. My family—my real family—is what matters.”
Jax knew how things went. He was only sixteen. They had different fathers. Hers as good as his was evil. Black and white. Good and bad. There was no way anyone would let him raise his sister and there was no way her father would take on the responsibility of him.
Jethro couldn’t really remember when he had a day worse then this one. It started out by identifying Jenny’s body and went even further downhill from then. How had none of them know Jen had two kids, a teenager and a young girl? Her sealed “death” file had spilled that secret. No pictures, which was good. It was bad enough he’d lost a boss, a good friend, a former lover. He couldn’t handle humanizing her any more. Not when he’d just identified her broken body. At least she’d tried to take Jeanne Benoit out as well.
He’d sent McGee, Ziva, and Tony to the school to get the kids. They were targets, but moreover they were Jenny’s kids and NCIS cared for their own. They’d get news to the father but until then, they were under his team’s custody. Abby and Ducky would be on board as well, nobody was going to stop any of them from watching over these kids. Jenny had made her choices but the kids were a different story.
Jethro walked to the headmaster’s office, clipping the visitor’s badge to his jacket. A little girl sat in the outer office and he wondered if they were breaking the news to the boy first.
The girl looked up at him hopefully and Jethro sucked in a shocked breath. She looked so damn much like Jenny. “Hi, you must be Sasha. I’m a friend of your mom’s. Is this seat taken?”
“Nope. Jax went inside to talk to the headmaster. Said I should stay here and wait for him.” Sasha moved over, giving the adult more space to sit. “Where’s Mommy? She always comes to get us if there’s trouble. Jax, he said he’d figure it out, but he hasn’t come back yet. Are you here to take us to see our mom? She said that we could only leave with Agent Fornell or Agent Gibbs. Are you one of them?”
“Yep, I’m Agent Gibbs.” He pulled out his ID and handed it to her. “Your mom wanted to be here, honey, but she couldn’t, so we’re here to take you, your brother, and your nanny someplace. Your mom has an ID just like mine, doesn’t she?”
Jethro looked up as Ziva poked her head out of the room, her expression grim. “Ziva? I’d like you to meet Sasha. Sasha, I’m going to introduce myself to your brother, okay? Can you sit here with Ziva for just a minute? I’ll even let you hang on to my ID.”
Sasha flipped the ID case in her hand, looking at the badge and then the picture. “I told Jax I’d stay here until he came to get me. He knows where to find me. Tell him it’s okay. Mommy said you’d come get us if something bad happened to her, and that you’d take us home with you. I know who you are, and I’m pretty sure when I’m done being sad I’ll really like you.”
The sadness in her eyes shook him. “Your brother will be out to talk with you soon, honey.” He looked at Ziva, imploring her to be gentle. “Sasha? I already like you.”
"I'm sorry. I didn't mean anything by it. You deal how you can, we're all trying to do the same. Your mom meant… I should say means a lot to all of us." Informing family was never easy, but it being Jen's family made it that much tougher on Tony. "You tell me when you're ready, we can move at your pace. And we haven't told Sasha anything. We'd want you there when we did, to offer her the support she'll need."
“I know. I’m sorry. I’m….I should have been prepared. I should have had a game plan. But you never expect. I mean…they just identified him. All time best, two dead parents in a span of three weeks. One I never wanted and the other who means everything.”
Jax looked longingly at a bottle of something on the headmaster’s desk. He hardly ever drank more than wine with dinner when he was being continental with his mother but right now he wanted a jolt of something to calm his emotions down.
“You can’t tell Sasha. It’s my job, or her father’s, and the poor sap doesn’t even know he has a daughter. So my responsibility, my job. I get to break her heart. Being the big brother sucks, sir. Cause there’s no one to catch me when I fall and I’m catching her.”
"Call me Tony, I'm not really the sir type of guy. And you should be the one to tell your sister. She's going to need you more than ever now. If you want, we can try to get in contact with her father. He may not know, but he could help you both out. We'll talk to Gibbs, see what he thinks. It might be a couple days before we're ready to move on anything."
Jacx paced, Three steps one way, pivot, three steps the other. “Okay, Tony. I’ll tell her father. He has to know and she needs him and he’s safe. I don’t know him but he’s pretty much the opposite of mine. Gibbs will be here soon. I’ve heard about you, but we can only leave with Gibbs or Fornell from the FBI. Mom’s orders.” He sighed.
“God, I just can’t believe that my mom is gone…”
He thought he knew why she’d been killed. “Was it revenge for him being killed? He was pretty high profile. I know you have procedure and I know you have to get us to safety but I have to know…”
Eliza tried to hug him again and Jax shook his head. “I can’t, Eliza. Not right now.” He returned his gaze to the agent. “I need to see her. I know you guys probably IDed her but I have to…say goodbye. If it is rough….I can handle it. I have to. She’s my mom and I couldn’t protect her. Please understand.”
“Can you wait a few minutes? I’ve already told you more then I should have. Gibbs is on his way, he’ll explain everything to you. I promise.”
“I want answers, sir, not explanations,” Jax said softly. “I need to know why. I need to know if that psychopathic family was involved.” The man couldn’t understand. Nobody could. All his life, he’d reminded his mother of the man who had wrecked their lives and took the most important person to her away. And now that he was gone, Jax had hoped that there was some way they could all relax. But…no. And in his gut he knew that someone associated with his father had taken away his mother.
“Why are they so bent on destroying everything we love? Wasn’t destroying my grandfather’s reputation enough? Who did it, Tony? Who specifically did it?”
"Jeanne Benoit was directly responsible, but your mother tried to make sure that she won't be able to do anything to you or Sasha. No one from that family will ever be able to bother you again. We're reopening up your grandfather's case as well. If we can clear his name, we'll do that. For you and your mom."
His half sister had killed his mom, he had known it, even before hearing it. He hated knowing it, but it made sense. “Did Mom kill her? Or did Mom die and she gets to live. Why? Why? I mean, from what I heard, she loved you. She had to have a heart. Not like him. Not…like…him. You know her. Please tell me why. Please, sir. I have to make sense out of this, to give Sasha something. She’s only eleven, for God’s sakes.”
He shook his head, clenching and unclenching his fists. “None of this makes sense. I don’t even know who to trust right now, who’ll do right by Mom. Beside you guys. And NCIS wasn’t so great to Mom when they found him. What if they withdraw support? Where does that leave my little sister? I’m old enough to do the runaway network and disappear but Sasha’s only a little girl.”
"I don't know why she did it, Jax, I loved her but this isn't the woman I knew. Your mom shot her, put five bullets into her. She was taken to surgery, but I don't know any more than that. We'll get word once we know what's going on. But even if she survives, she won't be living anymore. She'll spend the rest of her natural life in jail, if they don't put her up for the death penalty."
“You loved her, really, sincerely?” Tony nodded, very somber. “Then I hope, for you, that she lives. I’m glad…I’m glad Mom went down fighting. For so long, Tony, I held on to hope that Jeanne was okay, and that if I could just make contact it’d be…okay. It would make sense, being his kid. I’m so damn glad I never met her now.” How would there be hope for him if everyone on that side of the family was insane?
He clenched his eyes shut. “Tony, its like I’m a ticking time bomb…”
Ziva sat down next to the little girl as Gibbs stepped away. “Hello, Sasha. I’m Ziva. I was a friend of your mommy’s.”
“Hi, are you supposed to take care of me now? You were in with Jax, is he ok? I want my mommy, but she’s dead isn’t she? I know Gibbs didn’t say so, but that’s the only reason he’d come here and not just Eliza. She’s my nanny, and I love her lots.” Sasha continued to flip the badge case that Agent Gibbs had given her, watching it intently. “He’s my daddy, he doesn’t know it yet but my mommy told me. She said that if something happened to her, he would come and get Jax and I. Now he’s here, so I know something’s wrong.”
The child was Gibbs’ daughter? And the boy was Rene Benoit’s? Ziva was stunned. “Your brother and your Eliza are inside there with some of my friends. Your brother is worried about you, of course, but he will be just fine. As will you, Sasha.” Ziva was no good at this, even though her heart was cracking in her chest.
“Your brother and Gibbs will tell you all about your mommy.”
"Jaxy, he worries too much. He says it's because he's oldest and that's what oldest kids are supposed to do. I know it's because Mommy's been in trouble. He always worries more about her than anything else." Sasha moved closer to the woman, remembering stories about mommy and Ziva in Europe. "You're nice, Mommy always said that you two had fun together. She said that you were like Wonder Woman, cause you could do everything that the boys could do."
“Your mommy hasn’t been in trouble, Sasha. Your brother is mistaken.” Ziva put an arm around the little girl. “Who is Wonderful Woman? And why did I never know that your mommy had such a pretty little girl?”
"Wonder Woman, she's a superhero. She can do anything that the stupid boys can do, and even better. She's in the cartoons, you can watch with me. I have movies back at the house that we can see. She's great, looks like you too." From the time she was old enough to understand, Sasha knew that she and her brother had to hide. It was so that bad guys didn't get them. "She was keeping us safe. Bad people could have hurt us if they knew we were alive. So Mommy hid us when we were in school. She'd come visit and we'd go away with her. Sometimes we even were able to stay at her townhouse, but we have a house of our own that we live at with Eliza. She takes care of us when Mommy can't."
“I would like that, Sasha. I don’t know what their plans are, but if I am allowed I would like to watch this Wonderful woman with you. And you look very much like your mother. You are just as pretty as she is. That pretty red hair and those eyes. You have very pretty blue eyes.” And her mother had green. The child had Gibbs’ eyes.
“Thank you, Miss Ziva. I thought my mommy was the prettiest woman in the world. She always said I had my daddy’s eyes. You think so? I looked, but I couldn’t tell.” Sasha knew that her mom’s friend would take good care of her. And her daddy would come back and it would be okay. He was strong and would keep all the scary people away. “Is he nice? I think he seemed nice, but I don’t know for sure.”
“Your mommy is and you’re ever bit as pretty. You do have your father’s eyes. He has very nice eyes.” How to explain Gibbs? “He is very good with children but he doesn’t talk as easily with adults. Sometimes he seems very stern and not too patient, but that is because he wants to help as many people as possible.”
“He just needs to learn not to be so stern. Mommy was like that sometimes, if something scary was happening. If we had to go on vacation without her, that’s when she was the worst, but it was because she loved us so much. I bet he’s growly like a teddy bear, and maybe cuddly too.” Sasha only knew good things about her dad, but it was nice to hear from someone who knew him better. And he liked kids. “I hope he likes me, ‘cause I’m a child, and you said he likes kids. Jax too, he has to like the both of us, cause no one else will be able to take care of us.”
“Yes, he does have to learn to be not quite so stern and you are just the one to teach him, Sasha Shepard.” Ziva put an arm around the little girl’s shoulders. “He will be the best daddy ever, and you will see.”
Jethro ran a hand over his face, composing himself before walking inside the headmaster’s office. The headmaster looked at a complete loss for words, while Tony was standing with a teenager, and McGee was hovering over a middle aged woman.
“Gibbs, I know. She…” He smiled slightly, a sad, gentle expression that reminded Jethro so much of Jenny for a moment. “She’d be furious at me for telling you this, but… Sir, she loved you. You have to believe and understand that.”
“Jax, there will be time to discuss all of that later. We have to get you to safety first.” The boy had guts to just come out with that.
The boy looked at Tony before speaking. “Something you need to know, sir. Rene Benoit was my father. Genetically speaking. Never met him, don’t think he knew about me, but someone associated with him k-k-killed her…”
Jethro wrapped an arm around Jax’s shoulders, holding the stiff boy close. “Jax, I promise you, nobody associated with him will lay a hand on you and your sister. Ever. We’ll talk later but we have got to go. Can you hold it together for your sister, just for a few minutes? She knows something is wrong and she needs you now.”
Jax nodded his head, wiping his eyes and pulling away. “Yes, sir.” He turned to the headmaster. “Thank you for everything, Headmaster Suggs. We’ve both enjoyed our time here a lot.”
Jethro could only watch as the boy shook the man’s hand. He had Jen’s poise and way of putting people at ease.
“I don’t care who his father is, that boy is one hundred percent Jenny’s, DiNozzo. What have you told him?”
“Bare minimum. He pretty much knew something was wrong when he walked in. He’s sharp, won’t be able to keep most of this from him. He’s very much his mother’s son. Ziva confirmed that Sasha was outside waiting, and we were just waiting on you.”
“I saw her. She looks so much like Jenny, Tony.” Jethro was at a complete loss here. “I want the little girl protected from the truth. We’ll fill him in on a need to know.” He closed his eyes.
“Jeanne made it out of surgery with flying colors. She was wearing armor, so only two of Jenny’s shots impacted. We have her under FBI, CIA, NCIS guard, Fornell and Vance are there personally. She’s going to pay, DiNozzo. That bitch is going to pay. Slowly and painfully.”
Chapters: 1 | 2
MTAC - NCIS Fic