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By Jaina


Tony grinned and rubbed his hands together in anticipation. The only case they were dealing with at the moment was a rash of petty theft in base housing and he, Tony DiNozzo, was about to break their case wide open - just as soon as he got the forensic report from Abby.

He strolled into Abby's lab with a bounce in his step. He had plans tonight, after all.

"What have you got for me, Abby," he called out int an annoyingly cheery voice as he approached her.

Abby turned around with a wide smile.

"Tony - I was just about to call Gibbs. I got fingerprints off of some of the stolen items that were recovered. They belong to a Petty Officer Larkin. Now Larkin-"

"Abby-" Tony cut off her rapid explanation, "Who hit you?"

"No one," Abby said, cocking her head at him in confusion.

Tony summoned his best reproachful stare. "No one does not give you a black eye, Abby." He stepped closer to get a better look. He let out a low whistle. "That is some shiner." He looked at her skeptically. "You should probably have Ducky take a look at it."

"Tony, it's fine. It's nothing. Now leave me alone and let me tell you about Petty Officer Larkin."

"Distracting me is not an option," he said quietly.

"I'm not discussing this with you, Tony," she shot back.

Tony straightened and glared at her. "Okay." He pulled out his cell phone and speed dialed a number. "Yeah...Boss, you need to come down here."

"Tony!" Abby punched him in the shoulder hard.

"This is badly bruised, my dear," Ducky said as he gently touched the bruised skin above her eyebrow and under her eye. "I'd say you were hit by a blunt object, probably round, with considerable force," he concluded quietly.

Abby kicked her feet out feeling like a small child with her feet dangling as she sat on the autopsy table. Gibbs, Tony McGee and Ziva lingered around the table. The men all looked angry as they heard Ducky's pronouncement.

"Who did this?"

Gibbs was the one who asked the question that they had all been thinking. Ziva turned away from the group and began pacing rapidly.

"I did."

Gibbs looked away from Abby immediately, and stepped directly into Ziva's path, forcing her to stop pacing abruptly.

"Explain," he growled.

Ziva gestured towards Abby. "I should never have agreed to..."

Abby pushed herself off of the autopsy table and pushed past Tony and McGee. She reached out and took Ziva's hand. "This wasn't your fault, baby. I asked you to."

Gibbs looked back and forth between the two of them. "One of you tell me what's going on now."

"I asked Ziva to teach me how to shoot a rifle, Gibbs," Abby answered, briefly glancing away from Ziva to meet his eyes. "She took me to a shooting range yesterday." Abby winced and mimed holding up a rifle. "I got to close to the scope before I fired and the scope hit me when the gun kicked back. Recoil." Abby grimaced.

Ziva looked upset.

"You said it barely hit you." She brushed her fingertips over Abby's forehead. "This is not barely."

Abby looked embarrassed. "I didn't realize it was this bad. It kinda hurts," she admitted softly.

Ziva leaned up and brushed and kissed the skin just above it very gently, whispering a few soft words in Hebrew before Gibbs cleared his throat gruffly.

"Let's get back to the case." He pinned Ziva with a look. "Don't let my forensics expert get hurt again."

Ziva squeezed the fingers that were intertwined with her own.

"I won't."

The End

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