1. Tony's experience of being up a tree and his mother calling the fire department is the only memory he has of his mother. He was six, and though he thinks he should remember her from before that, he doesn't. This is what he remembers: her looking up at him, shading her eyes from the sun with her hand, smile playing around her mouth even though her forehead was furrowed with worry. The thrill of climbing down a real ladder on a real fire truck. Being handed a plate with three chocolate chip cookies on it, after, and mixing chocolate syrup into his cold milk. Kicking the legs of the chair.
He remembers the firemen better than he remembers her, and he hates that, more than just a little bit.
2. Tony became a movie fan because in five of the six houses he grew up in (he tells the truth when he says his father just moved them for every break up or divorce) the t.v. was the only thing loud enough to distract him from the arguing, and by the time he was eleven the cartoons and sitcoms had become boring.
3. He went to Ohio State on an academic scholarship, even though he didn't need the money. He was a chemistry major.
4. The worst case Tony ever worked was with the Baltimore PD, not with NCIS. His father had just died, not that that had anything to do with it, seeing how his father hated his job, and how Tony had chosen it at least partly to piss the old man off. He was starting to wonder if the job was worth it -- the cruddy pay and even crappier hours, the violence and the sheer stupidity of humanity, the casual hurt people inflicted on each other ever day -- just to enact revenge on a man who was now dead, even if that man was his father. Then the call came in while Tony was on the night shift. Eight year old girl, back alley, throat cut. Over the next two weeks there were four more, all under the age of ten. They caught the guy, Tony was sure: slum lord with a nasty beard and even nastier set of knives. When they couldn't match blood to the knives, they had to let him go. Tony punched a hole in the break room cabinet when they let him go.
He threw up on the carpet when they found the guy actually standing over Jane Doe #6.
While he was brushing his teeth, Tony figured it was worth it. Someone had to clean up the mess: something his father never understood.
He still hates the taste of mint toothpaste over vomit, though.
5. He was jealous of Rivkin. He was. He was right, too, but that's a small comfort. It still flashes through Tony's mind: the way Rivkin could lean into Ziva when he was talking to her; the way Rivkin could look at her, smile sideways in a way she would catch and then crinkle her eyes at unconsciously; the way Rivkin could casually brush his fingertips across her forearm, kiss her on the cheek, kiss her . . . other places. Everywhere.
He thinks that Ziva would laugh at him if he told her any of it. Or never speak to him again. He really doesn't savor either option. He thinks about it, sometimes. Thinks about what life would be like with her. Thinks about telling her he thinks about it. When he was on that plane, clunking his way to Israel, half-asleep, half-high on painkillers and in pain all of the time anyway in spite of the sling and the meds, he was afraid something had slipped out like heat during a fever dream, that he had whispered something he shouldn't have as he slid in and out of consciousness. But the look in Ziva's eyes when they land tell him differently.
The look tells him he hasn't said anything at all.
1. He told Rivkin: "Don't do it. Don't do it. Don't do it."