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MIA : Dead Man Talking
by: Jibbs123 (Send Feedback)
Series: MIA #4
Chapters: 001 Word Count: 1245
Warning(s): Other (See Author's Note)
Character(s): Jethro Gibbs, Tony DiNozzo, Abby Sciuto, Timothy McGee, Caitlyn (Kate) Todd
Category(ies): Episode Related, Friendship, Hurt/Comfort
Pairing(s): Abby/McGee, Tony/Kate, Gibbs/Jen
Episode(s): 1-19 Dead Man Talking
Summary: The team is shattered after Chris Pacci's death, can one little fireplace and a lot of talking help them heal?
Author Notes: This isn't REALLY a character death story, but I have to put that because it covers Chris Pacci's death. So yeah, enjoyage!
Every cloud has a Silver Lining
MIA : Dead Man Talking
MIA : Dead Man Talking
The rain lashed at the small car that sped along. Inside was a woman fighting for control of her feelings.
The unbidden image of Chris’s mutilated body floated into her mind. Angrily, she wiped away a tear that slid down her cheek.
`No! I didn’t cry at Mom’s funeral, I won’t cry for a man I barely knew!`
Kate mentally shook herself and decided that even though she barely knew him, she should say goodbye.
The car skidded on the wet road and Kate pulled over before NCIS lost another agent. Taking a deep breath, she succumbed to the emotional turmoil that brewed inside her. Slowly, the tears began to fall.
She cried for Chris Pacci, she cried for his family, she cried for guilt that ate at Gibbs and the pointless loss of life.
She simply cried. She let all of the hurt, shock, anger and fear that she had experienced in her time at NCIS out.
Eventually, the tears dried up and Kate felt numb.
Gibbs looked about him. DiNozzo stared uninterestedly at the report in front of him. Abby sat with her knees pulled up to her chest. She rocked back and forth, staring into space.
The air of failure hung over the bullpen like a suffocating blanket. Gibbs switched off his workstation, murmured `goodnight` to all present and left.
He drove in silence. Desperately, he tried to push the images of Pacci out of his mind. He recognised Kate’s car, pulled over at the side of the road.
`No!` He thought desperately `No, if that bastard Haswari has got her, I’ll kill him. I swear I will!`
Gibbs pulled up behind Kate’s car. He got out and ran up to the front window and wiped away the rain.
Not being able to see past the condensation, he pulled the door open. Kate looked up in surprise and another tear slid down her cheek.
When Gibbs took this in she flung herself at him and he caught her as a fresh stream of tears were shed.
The rain beat down making the world appear as bleak as it felt at that moment, for two people in an unfortunate chain of events.
x – Kate’s Apartment - x
Kate towelled her hair in a vain attempt to dry it. Gibbs ran a hand across his hair that was plastered to his head.
“Are you alright?”
Kate looked up
She said warily
“You, wanna talk?”
“You should get outta those wet clothes first.”
They sat in silence for a while. Kate spoke up.
“When I first came to NCIS, Chris asked me out to dinner. Just to welcome me. I suppose I wasn’t really, well, open with him. He was. He told me all about how NCIS saved him and how he admired you. He warned me about Tony and–”
“So that’s why you didn’t fall for me then!”
Gibbs and Kate turned around suddenly to see Tony leant up against the wall, dripping wet.
“Sorry! You didn’t answer the door, I heard voices and it was unlocked! So I came in!”
Kate sighed and flung a towel at him
“Dry yourself off.”
Kate turned away and banked up the fire then returned to her seat by the hearth, next to Gibbs.
They sat in silence for a while, then Tony began to speak.
“When I first joined NCIS, Chris invited me around for a beer. We talked about girls and cars and stuff. Then for some reason, I told him about the girl who I had been dating. She was very special to me. Someone who I put away, got out and wanted revenge. He killed her. I killed him shortly after, then I joined NCIS. Chris talked to me about it and it helped me move on.”
When Tony finished, Kate was at a loss for words. Tony had never really opened up to her like that. If Gibbs was speechless he did a good job of hiding it.
Tony sat on the other side of Gibbs and they looked at him as Gibbs began to speak
“When my last marriage ended, Chris took the time to check up on me and tell me that it would be OK. That I would get through it because I was a Marine and that was what I did. I told him of the time when I was a sniper and I gave away my position. The child I had to kill looked me in the eyes. Her eyes still haunt me today.”
Gibbs stared unseeing into the fire feeling the heat scorch his face and dry his hair. Kate felt the comfort that firelight offered and Tony watched the flames dance and felt his heart lift suddenly as his thoughts mingled with the flames.
The door bell rang and snapped all three out of their reverie. Kate stood and walked to the door she opened it as Abby, with tears pouring down her face, dropped McGee’s hand and hugged Kate tightly.
“Come on Tim, Abby. Gibbs and Tony are here.”
Abby looked up awkwardly
“Should we leave?”
“No, no! They’re not here like that! We were talking about Chris…”
Her voice trailed off as a tear slid down her cheek.
Abby sniffled as Tim cleared his throat. They went into the lounge and sat down next to Tony. Kate joined them and they sat in silence again.
“It was Chris who convinced me to talk to Abby.”
McGee spoke quietly as Abby rested her head on his shoulder
“Chris convinced me to talk to Timmy.”
McGee put his arm around Abby’s shoulders and hugged her close. Gibbs stood up suddenly and Kate looked at him startled.
“Where are you going?”
“Get a drink.”
Kate shuffled up towards Tony when Gibbs returned. Tony subtly reached out and took her hand. She squeezed it gently.
Kate began to cry softly. Tony pulled her into a tight hug as she sobbed into his shoulder.
“I have an idea. My Mum and I used to do this on the anniversary of when my Grandpa died. We lit a candle.”
Abby reached into her purse and pulled out an intricately painted candle. She lit a piece of firewood and held it. Everyone got a grip on the piece of wood as they lowered it towards the candle on the fireplace.
Gibbs spoke in a low voice, choked with emotion.
“Chris Pacci, you were a friend, a valued associate and a brilliant agent…”
He trailed off and Kate continued for him
“You helped me to feel wanted, like I had finally found my place…”
Tony cut in
“You helped me to move on from a death that I otherwise would still be under the shadow of…”
McGee spoke when Tony faltered
“You helped me to realise just how much I love Abby and I hope you see how happy I am, and I hope you get just as much happiness from it as I do…”
Abby finished for him
“And so, we light this candle to honour your memory and thank you for all of your help and as the flame takes a hold, you take a hold of your new life, as god’s right hand angel.”
And slowly, as the flame ate at the wick, five bruised hearts and torn souls began to mend.
MTAC - NCIS Fic