THINGS HE DIDN’T KNOW
AN: I wanted to write this as a missing episode sort of thing. And, I was going to include it in my story ‘In Strolls The Bossman.’ But, it is turning out to be way, way too long for that. So, I just posted it as a separate story.
NOTE: Tony didn’t do his secret op in this story. It made for some entertaining television. But, it was just a bad time for Tony.
“You never asked me, Boss. “ Tony said. “That’s what I’m saying.”
“I can’t decide what is best for my own team?” Gibbs asked. He was irritated by this second’s questions, and he wanted Tony to know that.
Tony knew Gibbs well enough to know this might not go well for him. But he had a right to know why Gibbs had acted the way he had.
“You never let anybody else pick your team members. “ Tony replied. “Then you let her come back….”
“You lead the Somalia mission.” Gibbs told Tony.
“Yeah…to save our soldiers and to stop the terrorists. I thought that Ziva was dead. We all did. Of course, after we found her, we had to bring her back with us.” Tony paused. “That doesn’t mean I wanted her back on the team.”
Gibbs just looked at Tony.
“After what she….” Tony stopped. He was not going to tell Gibbs about what Ziva had done to him. It would only serve to anger Gibbs. And Gibbs might even call him a liar. “You never questioned why Jenny wanted Ziva on the team.” Tony explained. “The old Gibbs would have questioned, no, he would have demanded answers. The old Gibbs would have kicked Ziva to the curb after he found out the reason she had killed Ari, the real reason. “
Gibbs opened his mouth to speak.
Tony shook his head. “You never told me that. You never told me….”
“I didn’t know Eli’s part then.” The team leader admitted.
DiNozzo shook his head. “It doesn’t matter. Because once you did knew, you still did nothing, said nothing. You let her stay and you ….”
“It’s my team, Tony. I am Team Leader, and nowhere in the manual is there anything that says that I have to explain myself to you…or anybody else.” Gibbs stated.
Tony nodded. “I know, that’s the problem.”
“I need to be brought in on the big decisions.” The SFA replied.
“I am not a doddering old fool.”
“No, you’re not.”
Gibbs kind of smiled at that. But, then Tony continued.
“You’re a man who never got over the loss of his daughter, years ago. “ Tony countered. “A man who is thinking he has a replacement, so he’s willing to…overlook certain things.”
“You…don’t you talk about Kelly! You didn’t know her! You don’t have the right…!” Gibbs fumed.
“Ziva is not a replacement for your daughter, Gibbs!” Tony told him. “She just…she isn’t.”
What sounded like something close to a growl erupted from Gibbs as he practically charged Tony. Tony sidestepped his boss and Gibbs stopped himself before he crashed into Tony file cabinet. He went for Tony again as Tony slipped around his desk and out of the bull pen enclosure.
“Agent Gibbs!” Vance yelled down as he come bounding down the stairs. He had no idea what was going on with his MCRT. But, it had to be major for Gibbs to be acting so out of character.
Gibbs stopped when he heard the voice somewhere above his head. He stopped and looked at the area around him, an area that was now filled with agents from other teams. They all had bets on this happening. They had bets on someone in the Lion’s Den going ‘postal.’ But they never thought it would be The Lion. The bet had always been someone under his command.
“Stand down, Agent Gibbs!” The director commanded, hurrying downstairs. He needed to get to the bullpen before someone got hurt.
“This is between me and my agent, Director.” Gibbs hissed turning his hard stare back to Tony.
Tony, on the other hand, was somewhat calm. He knew Gibbs. He knew what buttons to push, and he also knew how and when to leave things alone.
“No, actually he’s my agent. You are all my agents.” The director stated.
Gibbs growled again, finally looking at Director Vance.
“Agent DiNozzo, upstairs to my office.” Vance ordered. “Gibbs, stay here and calm down. I will be calling you up in a moment.”
Leon went back up to his office, after he had Gibbs’ promise that he would not leave the building. He then headed back up to his office. Tony was sitting in the waiting area outside.
“Come in, DiNozzo.” Leon said as he opened his door and went it.
Tony followed and sat down where Leon indicated.
“What…what was that?” The director asked as soon as he took sat down behind his desk.
“I was expressing my opinion, Director. Gibbs disagreed.” Tony said, simply.
“Pretty strong disagreement.”
“And...?” Vance paused, waiting for an answer. “What did you say to him, Agent DiNozzo.”
Tony didn’t want to answer. He had no idea what the director thought of Ziva, except for the fact that he allowed her to stay at NCIS. Tony didn’t like the prospect of losing his job or leaving NCIS, but he had to tell the director. Maybe Vance knew something he didn’t. Maybe…. Tony didn’t know. But, at any rate, it was time to tell somebody what he knew.
“I…enlightened Gibbs on some things that I knew about Ziva.” Tony finally admitted. He waited for the other shoe to drop. But, to his surprise, Vance didn’t seem, at all, shocked at what he had said.
“You may not be aware of this. But, I have known Eli David for a good many years.” Vance stated. “It seems as though that Eli manipulated my predecessor, through Ziva, to let Ziva join NCIS. And Gibbs’ accident couldn’t have come at a better time, him losing his memory like that, and Ziva coming in just before that time. It couldn’t have been any better choreographed And, since Gibbs trusted Sheperd, from the history that they had together, he didn’t question things.”
“Director David had something to do with that ship….?” Tony asked. He agreed with the last part. In his opinion, also, Gibbs had trusted Sheperd a little too much.
The director shook his head. He had found no evidence to that effect. And he had looked. “Eli just took advantage of the situation. He wanted to gain Gibbs’ trust.”
Tony felt himself getting angry. “What? Why is she still here? Why did you let her stay?”
“I found out only recently, Agent DiNozzo.” Leon studied Tony’s face. “What do you know?”
“I know…I didn’t lead that mission as a rescue mission, Director Vance. I thought Ziva was dead. We all did. We just…we found her. We had to bring her back. But, I didn’t want her back on the team. Not after….”
“After what?” Vance asked. He had a sinking feeling that Tony was hiding something big.
Tony shook his head again.
“Director, I…it happened awhile ago….”
“After what?” Director Vance asked, forcefully.
Tony sighed and told Director Leon Vance the story of how Ziva had knocked him down and held a gun on him. “Gibbs doesn’t know either, Director. I know how he feels about Ziva. And when she didn’t come back with us from Israel, I just….I wasn’t sure it would be an issue.”
Vance was angry. The agent knew Vance didn’t like him too much. So, he was not sure if the anger was directed at him or not. He waited for the director to speak.
“We have not seen eye to eye on many things, Agent DiNozzo. I am not a fan of your unorthodox methods. But, I cannot abide an agent putting another agent in danger, especially when the agent is already at a disadvantage.”
“So…that is what you and Gibbs were arguing about?” Vance asked.
“No,” Tony said. “Gibbs had neglected to tell me the real reason Ziva was sent to the U.S.”
“What did he tell you?” The director asked giving Tony the impression that there many theories going around about it.
“He said Ziva killed Ari to save him. But the truth is Ziva killed her half-brother because dear old dad ordered it.” Tony said his piece and then looked at Leon. “How long have you known?”
“Eli David got drunk and let it slip one night.” Vance stated. “Bragging on how much he ‘got over’ on Gibbs.”
“Why…?” Tony started to ask, very puzzled.
Vance nodded. “Why is she still here? Because it is not criminal to con somebody, because Sheperd’s job offer had strings and because Gibbs’ pride won’t let him admit to anything.”
Tony chuckled. “When did you know he knew?”
It was the director’s turn to laugh that time. “I was the one who told him. He didn’t believe it, at first. He told me that I had it all wrong, that I had no clue WHAT I was talking about. That is…until I told him the source of my information.”
Tony was shocked. He didn’t know what to say.
“You’re a brave man, Special Agent Anthony DiNozzo.”
Tony looked at Vance confused.
“You poked the bear.” Vance stated.
Tony had to chuckle at that one.
“I’ll tell Gibbs what happened between you and Ziva. He’s had a little time to calm down now.” Director Vance said. “I want you to go home. Just wait until Gibbs comes up and then get your things. I don’t want another scene.”
Tony nodded. “What’s gonna….what are you going to do?”
“I will fire her.” The director stated.
“And she’ll take it out on me.” Tony replied.
“Not gonna happen, DiNozzo.” Vance promised him. “What happened to you in Israel will never happen again.”
“She’s Mossad, Director.”
“I will make sure that she is sent back to Israel.” Vance told him.
Tony was shocked. Vance wasn’t doing this, totally for him. But the young agent was very grateful. Tony would not be hypervigilant for the rest of his life. He could not be on constant guard. He was not going to live his life that way.
“Thank you, Director.”
Vance nodded. “Nobody treats one of my agents like that, DiNozzo, especially another of my agents. Had I known what she did the day we came back, she would have never had the opportunity to ask Gibbs to choose. She would have been fired.”