"While you were sleeping-"
"I wasn't sleeping," Tasmin cut her partner off. "I was running an errand. I had some trouble getting back here."
"I was going for a film reference. It seemed appropriate. I don't know any films with titles such as 'While You Tried Not To Think Of Where You Were Going'. Although, Labyrinth could fit. Perhaps a pun on Pan's Labyrinth."
Tasmin smacked her partner in the back of the head. "Why would movie references be appropriate?"
"We were assigned a mission in NCIS."
"I repeat my question..." Then it dawned on her, and Tasmin smacked her partner in the back of the head again.
"What you do that for?"
"It's also fandom appropriate."
Allison glared at her. "Anyway. The fic is called The New Agent, which is exactly what it says on the tin. Except that it is same old, same old. The new agent is Gibbs' daughter and Tony fancies her. We've seen that before."
"Does she also have a history with McGee?"
"It doesn't say. Shall we go in and find out?" Allison pressed some buttons on the console and opened a portal.
Tasmin shrugged, grabbed her duffel bag, threw in the little parcel she had been holding and followed her partner through the portal.
In the bullpen McGee, Tony and Ziva were sitting behind their desks, sharing some banter.
Gibbs came walking down with his usual coffee in his hand.
"How stale would that coffee be?" Allison asked. The PPC agents had positioned themselves on the other side of partition.
Tasmin threw her a weary look. "You're going to make this mission even longer than it already is, aren't you?"
"I aim to please."
"It would please me even more if you would shut up."
A young woman stepped from the lift and walked over to the bullpen. All four NCIS agents watched her walk up to them.
The PPC agents watched too, but they tried to be less conspicuous about it.
She went over to Gibbs and took his coffee out of his hand, said, "Thanks," and walked to the stairs to go to Director Shepard.
"So young, so beautiful, so dead," Allison said.
"If it was only that easy," Tasmin replied.
Gibbs introduced the woman as his daughter. Then he just stood there.
"He's not going to move until the Sue gets back, is he?" Allison noted.
"Nope. He's not even going to get himself a fresh coffee."
The Sue had gone into the director's office for a meeting. Since there was no way the agents could be present at that conversation without being spotted, they followed the scene through the Words.
Shepard was reading the Sue's accomplishments out to her. Her grade point average in school and college, teachers comments, and the courses she had taken.
"Shouldn't this conversation have taken place before she was hired?" Allison asked. "I mean, it's customary to meet with job applicants before hiring them, isn't it?"
"The classes you took also involved crime scene study and criminal psychology," Director Sheppard continued. "You obviously seemed to know exactly the classes you needed to take for this job."
"Well, no," Tasmin said. "NCIS has a website that details job requirements, but other than a bachelor degree, they don't specify in what area or speciality that degree should be. Basically, every speciality has the potential of being useful. After hiring you get the courses on how to investigate a crime and write a report. Not sure whether it is an advantage if you've already taken these courses, because that means there are other useful courses you have not taken."
"Did she just create a mini?"
"She did. I guess it's upstairs with them. We'll have to look for it later."
"Just so you know, even though you are Agent Gibbs's daughter, you will not get special treatment here," Director Sheppard warned.
"She should. She should be treated specially, and be assigned to a team in a different location," Tasmin said.
"And just to stop confusion between me and my dad, just call me Agent G. Or something to distinguish us from each other."
"We'll just call you Sue," Allison said.
The two women left Shepard's office. The moment they arrived in the bullpen, Gibbs and the others unfroze. Of sorts. They now all stared in a different direction.
The mini left the office with the two women and tried to climb down the stairs. Which was no easy feat. Minis are only 18 inches tall and oddly proportioned: they have relatively large heads and bodies and short legs. The stairs were easily as high as the mini's legs, but Director Sheppard, as the mini was called, was resilient if anything. It jumped down the first few steps, but changed its mind when it nearly lost its balance. Then it would lie down on its stomach and swing its little legs over the edge. It lowered itself further once it had found some solid footing.
Tasmin poked her partner. "Go help that mini."
Allison got up, straightened her shoulders and as casually as possible strolled over to the stairs.
The Sue paid her no notice. She was "bonding" with her new team.
"So you're the new Probie," Tony said.
Kitty turned to him. "Call me that again; I'll beat you into a pulp with a bat."
"That's nice," Tasmin said. "Threatening severe bodily harm to a colleague for getting called a teasing name. Doesn't she know Franks still calls her dad 'Probie'?"
Allison returned, the struggling mini tucked under her arm. "They never make minis of the quiet ones." She put the mini down on the desk. "Sit down. Pretend to work." She pushed a keyboard towards the mini. That seemed to work; the mini started typing furiously.
Ziva stepped forward. "So why'd you want to join NCIS?"
Kitty shrugged. "I dunno.
"Such dedication to join NCIS. Why was this question not asked at her job interview?"
"I think this Sue never had a job interview," Tasmin replied.
"Tony, you may want to close your mouth before that droll reaches the floor," Ziva said, eyeing Tony's gaze.
"Yes, Tony," Allison said. "Don't drop the funny."
Abby arrived in the bullpen and engaged in conversation with the Sue. Tony was annoyed Abby already seemed to know Gibbs had a daughter. McGee reassured him he hadn't known either.
"Thanks, Probie," Tony said.
"Hey! I'm not the new guy anymore! I'm not Probie anymore!" McGee said.
Tasmin rolled her eyes. "They are all so touchy. And he is still Probie. Probie is short for probationary agent. Probation doesn't end with the hiring of a new agent. It ends with a good service record."
Abby suggested going to see Ducky. She grabbed the Sue by the arm.
"Oh, and if he starts rambling on about something, just nod your head and agree."
"Abby would never talk like that about Ducky. She loves his ramblings. Write her up."
"Good. Let's take a portal." Tasmin pulled the remote activator from her bag and opened a portal.
Allison stuffed the notepad in a pocket and picked up the mini. Director Sheppard was not at all happy about this. Allison took it in a choke hold and stepped through the portal.
The portal brought the agents to the bullpen. Tony sat behind his desk throwing pencils at the skylight. Kate and McGee were sat behind their respective desks.
"This is not right." Tasmin looked around.
"What seems to be the problem?"
"It seems like we stepped into a different story all together." She pointed at the Words. "Even the writing is different."
The lift doors swooshed open and Gibbs and a young woman exited.
The PPC agents quickly hid behind the partition.
"Guys, I'd like you to meet the new addition to our team. My daughter," he looked to her with a proud smile and stepped aside.
"The theme of the story isn't different," Allison noted. "What happened? How can we be in two different stories at once?"
"That both of them have Gibbs' daughter joining the team may have something to do with it. I suggest you start keeping two different charge lists."
"She's fresh out of the Marines and is going to be working with us. Does anyone have a problem with this?"
"I do," Tasmin said. "And NCIS has, too. I don't think they encourage nepotism."
Allison pulled her notepad from her pocket. She flicked a few empty pages from the list she had started not too long ago, and started a new list with so far exactly the same charges.
Gibbs further introduced his daughter. Her name was Candice and she had finished top of her class.
"To not get confused with even more agent Gibbses, we should call her Sue-C," Allison suggested.
Tasmin took a deep breath. "You're still gonna do that, right? Even if I say no."
Allison smiled. "She's handing it to me on a silver platter."
Tony and McGee were both very much in awe with Sue-C. The Sue was not impressed with them. She sat down behind Gibbs' desk and started throwing pencils at the skylight.
"Just a random thought, but why do these people keep so many pencils on their desks? Isn't everything computerised around here?" Allison asked.
"They do occasionally have to take a note on a piece of paper," Tasmin replied. "Although, in this case, I think the pencils were left here specially for throwing at the skylight."
Gibbs announced there was a crime scene waiting for them. Everyone got up and they all rushed to the lift to get to the car.
"Let's take another portal, and lets see where it takes us this time." Tasmin pressed a button on the remote activator.
"It seems we are back in the first fic," Tasmin said, after studying her surroundings for a moment.
"Is that another Sue?" Allison pointed at a man walking through the park. "Or Stu if that the case may be." She put the mini down on the ground. "Stay."
Yesterday he'd gotten a letter saying that he was going to go into a training camp for the Marines. Then he'd be deported to Iraq to fight in the war.
"Deployed," Tasmin said. "Soldiers are deployed, not deported."
"I don't know," Allison said. "For some people, being sent to Iraq is a form of punishment. I'm sure they would call it getting deported."
Tasmin glared at her partner, but it was too dark to be seen.
The man got the feeling someone was following him and he quickly left the park.
The agents followed him all the way to his apartment, which was a good twenty minutes hike.
"Why would anyone go for a walk this far from his home?" Allison asked. "Not that I mind the occasional hike, but if it's just for leisure, what's wrong with just a stroll around the block?" She put the mini on the ground. "And if we're going to hike some more, I want one of those baby satchels to carry this little one."
"I'll put it on my list of things to pack."
The man opened the communal front door and went up the stairs to his own flat.
Downstairs, he heard footsteps thundering up the stairs. Jacob didn't know who it was, but he was afraid of them.
"Not a good quality for a man about to join the Marines," Tasmin said. "Strange noises should not make a Marine afraid; it should make him cautious."
Jacob had every reason to be afraid. His pursuer caught up with him and stabbed him in the neck. Jacob bled to death slowly. All he could think of in his dying moments was the Sue and that the same fate awaited her.
"If Gibbs didn't kill her for stealing his coffee, I don't think a random guy with a knife is going to be any more successful."
Tasmin rolled her eyes. She opened another portal.
The portal brought the PPC agents to the morgue. There was quite a crowd there. Not only had Abby taken the Sue to meet Ducky, the rest of team Gibbs had decided to join. There was also an unidentified eighth person in the room. The agents tried to stay out of the line of sight of the Sue.
Ducky was rambling about DNA and that children are "meant" to look like their parents.
"Yeah, but when the gene for a big nose and the gene for a small nose meet, chances are the kid's nose is going to be middle sized and the kid ends up looking like neither parent."
"But then studies say how children will also have personalities like their parents because they're exposed to it," Ducky continued.
"I don't know what textbook he's been reading, but I want to hit him over the head with it," Tasmin said through gritted teeth.
Allison looked at her partner in surprise.
"Let me rephrase that. I want to take one of the textbooks Ducky has actually read and smack the Sue over the head with it."
"That sounds more like you."
"Even babies have personalities, and they have had very little exposure to their parents yet. Kids develop individual personalities. They may take over certain traits from their parents, but they certainly aren't carbon copies."
"He's probably been reading fanfic," Allison replied. "In fanfic kids always take after their parents in looks, personalities and profession."
"I doubt we can charge the Sue with making Ducky read fanfic."
Allison grinned mischievously. "We can try."
"We can charge her with making Ducky spout psycho babble."
Shepard walked in and disturbed the get-together at the morgue. She announced a new case.
While team Gibbs made their way back to the bullpen for a briefing on the case, an author's note boomed through the empty morgue:
Oh, and if anyone got confused, Jacob's murder happened the night before. Right now in briefing, it's about eight in the morning
"Why would we be getting confused?" Allison asked, cautiously lifting her hands off her ears. She patted the mini on the back. It had tried to make itself as small as possible and was making squeaking noises.
Tasmin studied the Words. "Because in the chronology of the scenes, Jacob's murder happened while everyone was going down to the morgue."
"That makes sense; this Sue's job interview took place after she was hired."
"It doesn't make sense. At least not to the author. She's resorting to author's notes to explain the order of her fic, and that's just bad writing. If readers aren't supposed to be confused, the confusion should be avoided in text, not in author's notes."
"Should we attend that briefing?"
"Why are they even having a briefing? Usually they just grab their gear and go to the crime scene."
Allison made a note of the charge while Tasmin studied the Words of the scene.
Shepard introduced the murder victim and the Sue reported that she knew him. They had been lab partners in school and had prepared together for their NCIS applications.
"It won't cloud your judgment in this case, will it?"
"Yes, it will." Tasmin scowled. "She should be taken off the case immediately. McGee was taken off the case that involved his sister."
"But she was a suspect."
"Doesn't really matter whether the friend is a victim or a suspect. He seemed to have been a close friend, so she can't be considered to be objective."
The Sue claimed she hadn't know him that well. They hadn't talked outside of class. Which was good enough for Gibbs as he decided that it was time to go.
"Shot gun," Kitty said.
"This Sue's got a death wish," Tasmin said, "and I forgot to bring my rifle." She pulled the remote activator from her bag. "This fic makes me sick. I want to go back to that other fic."
In the other fic, team Gibbs managed to get to the crime scene without going through a briefing first. Though, in their case a briefing might have been useful.
The investigators met Ducky, the medical examiner, at the scene. There was a young woman, about thirty, naked in a dumpster behind a local club. She had bruises on her arms, legs and face. Her ankles and wrists were slit and there were strap markings on her throat and knees. Burn marks covered her chest and stomach.
"What makes this an NCIS case?" Tasmin asked. The two agents were looking at the scene from the fire exit of the club. The mini had calmed down a bit and was standing between Tasmin's legs. "She's not found on naval terrain. She hasn't been identified yet as Navy personnel, what with being naked and not wearing a uniform. And it most certainly isn't known that her killer is Navy. In short, this murder is none of NCIS' business."
This was of no concern to Sue-C, who asked for a boost to get into the rubbish skip.
She crawled over to the body and began searching for any forms of ID.
"On a naked body?" Allison asked.
"Guess she thinks the identification might have been dumped along with the body."
Sue-C and Ducky lifted the body out of the skip. Ducky took it to the morgue. Gibbs ordered Tony to get into the skip. He protested, because he was wearing a very expensive suit, but Gibbs was not impressed.
"Why don't they take out all the trash and sort through it at NCIS?"
"Because this is funnier," Tasmin replied.
"I'm not laughing."
Gibbs announced he was taking the others back to the office and told Sue-C and Tony to call if they found anything. Shortly after they had left, Sue-C found a wallet and a gun. Whether or not they were related to their case, or even to each other, she decided to bag them as evidence.
"If you think like that, all the trash should have been bagged as evidence," Allison said.
Tony thought that was enough. He called Gibbs and asked for a lift back to the office. Gibbs said he would send McGee. Sue-C was not happy with the news that McGee would come to pick them up; she'd rather walk back. McGee arrived before she could get very far. She got into the passenger seat, but did not say a word to McGee.
"What's her beef with him?" Allison asked as the PPC agents watched the NCIS agents drive away.
"Don't know yet. The fic's not telling, and the Sue's given McGee lock jaw, so he's not telling either."
"Maybe he's waiting for the right time to confront her. Kind of like we are doing. Wouldn't it be something if McGee stepped up to Sue-C and said: 'and these are the reasons that you've ruined my life' and starts firing off charges?"
"Yeah, that would be something." Tasmin opened another portal. "Let's go back to the office and see whether the cat has returned his tongue."
At the office, Allison and Tasmin took their usual place. Allison put Director Sheppard behind another keyboard, which seemed to please the little one.
When the NCIS agents got back to the building. Sue-C ran straight to her father to report her findings. McGee took the wallet and said he would try to find the family of the man on the driver's license. Gibbs took the gun to the lab. Tony sat back in his chair, but Kate urged him to go take a shower. Sue-C overheard.
"A shower sounds pretty nice," she said as she passed Tony. Those grey-blue eyes landed on him and he swallowed. She leaned in close with a sly smile and ran her long, sleek fingers over his tie. "Wanna join?" He stared at her. Over her shoulder, he saw Kate's jaw hit the floor. It wasn't long before Candice burst out laughing.
"She does nothing to eradicate 'It was only a joke' as a defence in sexual harassment cases," Tasmin growled. "If men are not supposed to make sexual suggestions in the work place as jokes, then women shouldn't either."
Tony went down to the locker room, but found he did not have a clean set of clothes there. He did find an old credit card. In the next row of lockers, an already showered Sue-C, did find some clean clothes in her locker. She changed and went back to the bullpen. Tony noticed the name on her locker said "Speedle", but he had not seen a wedding ring on her hand. He decided to go back upstairs and report to Gibbs that he had no clean clothes.
Gibbs sent him home. In the car park Tony saw Sue-C. She couldn't get into her car because she had lost her keys. Tony offered her a lift. She wanted to be dropped off at an elementary school.
Tony went home to shower. When he returned to the office he reported to his colleagues that he thought Sue-C had a kid. Having nothing better to do - what with the murder victim never receiving a name and thus no background to be checked out - Tony gathered up the pencils on his desk. Until he remembered there was one piece of evidence they could work with.
"No lead on that wallet from the dumpster?" Tony asked as he began to throw pencils into the ceiling. McGee shook his head.
"I can't get a hold of the family and his profile isn't in any databases. He isn't a criminal or Naval officer."
"You have his driver's license. You can find the man's address through the DMV. Why are you trying to find the man's family rather than the man himself?" Tasmin was staring daggers at McGee. "He's even dumber without the Sue around."
Tony complemented McGee on not getting any results. McGee rebutted that Tony wasn't working very hard either. Tony said he had done his bit by ruining a good suit. He pointed out that McGee was very moody. He asked if he had disappointed Abby. McGee threw some office supplies at Tony and stormed out.
"Everybody is so touchy," Allison commented. "In both these fics. Warn me when we crossover into the other one, because I don't think I can tell them apart."
Kate sent Tony to go after McGee. Grumpily he did.
Tasmin decided the agents should go after him.
Tony found McGee near the lab where he was taking with Gibbs in a corner. Tony stepped back so he wouldn't be seen, but could still hear.
Gibbs took in a deep breath and placed a hand on his shoulder. "It's time to get over it McGee. That was years ago. Move on. OK? She has."
"Well, that explains McGee's tightness of jaw," Tasmin said. "He and the Sue have a history."
"You find that an acceptable explanation for his out-of-character behaviour?"
"Of course not. McGee is not afraid to talk to a woman, and a ghost from his past isn't going to leave him flabbergasted either."
When Gibbs left, Tony tried to apologise to McGee, but the younger agent pushed right past him. Tony decided to talk to Abby instead.
Abby had found a lot of blood on the gun and found the gun's owner: the man on the driver's license. He had reported the gun missing. Tony asked about the blood at which point Sue-C waltzed in.
Tony rolled his eyes and banged his head against the wall.
"Watch it DiNozzo, you might lose a few more brain cells," Candice smirked. Tony shot her an annoyed glare. Abbey chuckled.
"I didn't know he had any left."
"Write up the Sue for making Abby make mean comments, and catch that mini," Tasmin instructed.
"One thing at time, if you please."
Catching Abbey was not hard. The mini was probably just as surprised as the agents that she made an appearance in a fic. When Allison beckoned her, the mini quickly ran up to her and hugged her tightly. Writing up a charge with a mini clinging to her right arm proved to be a lot harder. Luckily, Director Sheppard stepped in. She persuaded Abbey to let go of her death grip on the agent's arm.
By the time Allison could direct her attention again to the scene at hand, Tony and Sue-C were leaving. He assigned her to talk to McGee, because only having been here half a day, he could not possibly have a gripe with her already. He himself went to talk to Ducky.
"What did I miss?" Allison asked.
"Blood on the gun belongs to the murder victim. And somewhere along the way they've managed to ID her. She still hasn't got a name, but at least she has a rank now. She was a petty officer."
"Where to now?"
"Let's first follow Tony. He's nearer."
The agents and minis went to the morgue.
Tony told Ducky that the blood found on the gun belonged to the murder victim. This puzzled Ducky.
"Odd, she has no bullet wounds," he pointed out.
Tasmin rolled her eyes. "You'd have to shoot someone from pretty close range to get blood splatters on a gun. Hitting them over the head with it is a more likely way to get blood on a gun." She pulled the remote activator from her bag. "I'm afraid the only way we are going to get any intelligent conversation in this fic is if we stay near the Sue." She opened a portal.
Allison took each mini by the hand and ushered them through the portal.
The portal returned the agents to the first fic. They found themselves at the crime scene along with the NCIS agents. Tasmin quickly pulled Allison and the minis down one flight of stairs and into the apartment underneath that of the murder victim.
Ziva and the Sue made pictures of the crime scene, while Tony wondered out loud who would want to kill the guy.
"He knows that's his job to find out, right?" Allison asked. "He knows he's not going to find the answers by just asking the questions?"
The Sue found some keys underneath the body. After taking some pictures, she established that one of the keys belonged to the apartment: it had the same number on it.
Tasmin rolled her eyes. "Locker keys have numbers on them. Hotel room keys have numbers on them. That's because the people using them, usually only use them temporarily and are therefore at risk to forget their room or locker number. For that reason, apartment door keys do not have the number of the apartment on them. People rarely forget what number their apartment is."
"Perhaps this rookie Marine is suffering early onset Alzheimer's."
Tasmin glared at her partner. "This guy is becoming less and less suitable as a Marine."
"Isn't he ultimately unsuitable because he is dead?"
Tasmin hit her partner in the back of the head.
The Sue also came up with another conclusion in regard to the keys.
She thought for a second. "Well, this wasn't a robbery, was it?" Tony, Ziva, and McGee looked at her. "I mean, the keys are out here. And they were placed only the way a body could fall."
Her colleagues thought this sounded reasonable.
Tasmin disagreed. "Whether or not someone is lying on his keys doesn't determine whether something was a robbery, or attempted robbery. Whether or not he still has his wallet is more important in that respect. Besides, an apartment building's hall way is about the worst place for a robbery. First you'd have the trouble of getting in and then you'd have the trouble of people opening their own apartment door and see what is going on."
"So, no reason to assume robbery." Allison tapped her pen on her notepad. "And therefore no reason to dismiss robbery and look clever."
Team Gibbs split in two. Tony and the Sue went outside to look for clues, much to her chagrin.
Tasmin and Allison poked their heads out of the apartment window and watched as the Sue and Tony came out of the building.
The Sue explained why she didn't think there would be anything of interest in Jacob's apartment:
"Because there's not going to be anything in that room. We established that it was most likely not robbery."
"There still could be clues in his apartment," Tasmin said. "Particularly, if it was a targeted murder. Makes it likely the vic knew the murderer and perhaps wrote about him in his diary."
Tony made a similar suggestion as Tasmin.
"That's about the smartest thing he has said all day," Allison said.
The Sue and Tony split up to look for clues, but neither found anything. Gibbs called Tony on his phone to tell him to stop thinking out loud. The Sue made a circle around the building and then continued her search towards the street.
In the grass was a set of footprints.
"Usually, grass bounces back pretty quickly after you've set your foot on it."
The Sue took pictures of the footprints.
Tasmin rolled her eyes and inhaled a furious breath. "I'm done pointing out the stupid in this fic."
"Just as well. The Sue might spot us hanging out the window like this."
"Doubt it. She's an idiot and we're just curious neighbours."
The Sue and Tony walked back to the building.
She was walking away from him. And he couldn't help but stare a little.
"DiNozzo, stop staring at my butt!" Kitty yelled
Tony snapped his eyes back up to her face.
Tasmin pulled her partner away from the window and closed it. "The butt and face are not on the same side of the body," she yelled.
"I thought you were done pointing out the stupid?" Allison eyed the two minis who were clutching each other and shivering.
"I know. It's stronger than me."
"Why don't you sit over there and eat some nice relaxing chocolate?"
Tasmin did as she was told. Allison opened the window again.
Tony had just found a wet footprint on the sidewalk that hadn't been there before. He called Gibbs on the phone to tell him. Gibbs was pissed off by the news.
"Damn police didn't secure the place," Gibbs said.
"Damn Gibbs didn't check whether the place was secured. He just walked in here and didn't even notice there was no yellow tape," Tasmin said. She chuckled and took a bite of chocolate.
Allison turned to her. "I think you should also stop reading the Words. It's not going to help you relax."
Tasmin chuckled in reply.
The Sue decided to move her investigation to a section of trees near the building. There someone attacked her. The attacker managed to slash her arm and hold a knife to her throat. Then, seemingly unprovoked, he let go of her and ran away. The Sue cried out for help. Tony came. He called Gibbs to explain the situation.
"I think the guy who killed our vic was trying to kill Kitty also."
"Why?" said Allison. "Why would you think such a thing? The vic was killed between seven and ten hours ago. Ducky said so. What clues have you got that he stuck around all that time?"
Tasmin chuckled again. "It is painful that this Sue is rather dumb, but makes the canons even dumber." She held out her bar of chocolate. "Want some?"
Allison decided that was a rather good idea.
Gibbs decided that it was a good idea to leave the unsecured crime scene until local police had secured it properly.
"I think we should go and charge these Sues," Allison said. "Things are only going to get worse from this point onwards. And I doubt you have brought enough chocolate to keep you sane."
Tasmin opened her bag and showed the contents to her partner. "I stocked up before we left."
"You want to stay here longer? I think you have lost your sanity already."
"Well, we could go somewhere else." Tasmin got up and patted the crumbs of chocolate off her clothes. She took the remote activator and opened a portal.
The portal took them to the observation room. In the interrogation room a tall man in a black trench coat sat behind the table staring at the mirror.
"What did we miss?"
Allison made a quick scan of the Words. "Kate's gone missing. McGee said sorry to Sue-C, but she's having none of it. Tony and Sue-C went to New York to check out owner of driver's license' apartment. He wasn't in, but a friend was. He let them in and the agents went home with a bloody rag. Sue-C told Tony she was widowed after a three month romance and an even shorter marriage. Oh, and apparently, they have a suspect and his DNA, but I can't find when they decided they had a suspect."
"I'm surprised they have a suspect," Tasmin said. "When we were in this fic last, they hadn't investigated the case of the murdered woman for a minute. And from what you told me, they continued not investigating that case. Who's he?"
"I'm sure you can read yourself."
"You told me not to read the Words any more."
Allison growled. The things she said always came back to bite her in the arse. "Owner of finger print found on the driver's license found in the skip. Gibbs and McGee brought him in. They left the interrogation to Sue-C and Tony. Guy also owns a warehouse that stores suspicious chemicals. Abby found traces of the chemicals on the gun. Gibbs and McGee went to check out the warehouse."
Sue-C and Tony entered the interrogation room. The man made a lewd remark and the Sue slapped him for it. She demanded that he would tell her about the owner of the driver's license. The man replied he had no idea who that was. Tony asked him about the warehouse. The man announced that it would blow up in about ten minutes. With Kate Todd in it.
"How did he get hold of her?" Tasmin asked.
"Fic doesn't say. So my guess that she got up from her desk and walked straight into his arms, is as good as any of your guesses."
Sue-C realised that her dad was also at that warehouse. She raced out of the room and ran to Tony's car.
"All of a sudden phones don't work any more?" Tasmin asked.
"Worse," Allison said. "For every little trifle they're on the phone to each other, but now that there is a bomb- You know, there is this dessert called a bombe. It's round."
Sue-C and Tony arrived at the warehouse too late: there were two explosions before they could warn Gibbs. Gibbs, however, had luck of the Irish and came out of the warehouse unscathed. Well, there was a little blood and his clothes were ripped. All went back to NCIS, where Gibbs said he would continue the interrogation of the man in the trench coat. Tony entered the observation room to watch.
The man taunted Gibbs and Gibbs lost his temper. He threw the man on the floor and spat on him. When the man tried to get up Gibbs slammed him down a few times.
"So you're willing to take the blame and the consecutive life sentences and possible execution for the murder of a federal agent. Two in fact."
"No," Tasmin said. "He's willing to take the bruises on his back and getting off on a technicality, because he was beaten up during questioning."
The man was still not talking and when he got up, Gibbs threw him against a wall and started to throttle him.
Tony cringed as he watched the man's face turn purple. This was police brutality and Gibbs could lose his job, but there wasn't anything Tony himself could do. Nothing but watch.
"What? Why?" Allison looked at the Special Agent. "Did Gibbs lock you in here? Did he nail your feet to floor?"
"Write him up as an accessory to police brutality, and for not considering the repercussions Gibbs' behaviour has for the case."
The man finally talked. He said the man from the driver's license could be found with Michael Wimble. He didn't know where Wimble was, though.
Gibbs sent Tony and Sue-C to find Wimble. After talking to some junkies they got information that Wimble had gone to Florida. Gibbs sent them to Florida. Tony and Sue-C went by car.
"It's 1,055 miles from Washington to Miami, approximately," Tasmin said. "That's going to be a long drive."
"Why don't they fly? Or call an NCIS office in Florida? Or put out a BOLO?"
"Did you have not being sensible as a charge yet?"
"I always have that charge. Can we please be sensible and take a portal?"
The PPC agents and minis stepped into a bustling office. It was an easy location for them to blend into the background. Tasmin sat down behind a desk and motioned Allison to do the same.
Sue-C and Tony entered the same office. They talked to a receptionist, who was very happy to see Sue-C again. Then they went to a lift to go to a higher floor. A woman exited who was also happy to see Sue-C.
"No! No," she laughed. "This is Special agent Dinozzo," she introduced. The woman shook his hand.
"Calleigh Duqense," she said.
"What's that?" Allison pointed at large pair of sunglasses. The mini Dinozzo was checking his hair in the reflection of the dark shades.
"I guess that is a mini. Of sorts. We must have ended up in a crossover. I don't know of what."
Allison went over to the minis and picked both of them up. Dinozzo tried to cop a feel. Allison dropped him on his head when she put him down. Abbey and Director Sheppard first giggled, but then they went over to Dinozzo to take care of him.
A moment later, two men came in, dragging between them Michael Wimble.
"Whatever the fandom, it is one that is no stranger to plot contrivances."
"Sues are no stranger to plot contrivances."
The two men greeted Sue-C. She introduced them to Tony as Horatio Caine and Eric Delko. They had picked up Wimble on a drugs bust. Sue-C said she wanted to observe the interrogation. Horatio agreed.
While Horatio interviewed Wimble, Sue-C and Tony watched from the adjacent room. Eric came in and Sue-C greeted him happily. He asked her how her son was.
"How's he reacting to his biological father?" Eric asked.
When the Sue indicated she hadn't told him, Eric got a little angry and said he had a right to know.
"Is this really the sort of private conversation you want to hold in front of a friend's new colleague?" Allison asked. "Or has Tony's reputation of easy incapacitation sped to Miami ahead of him?"
"Tim was his dad," she argued. "If I introduce them, it will just confuse him."
"Did she just say McGee is the father of her kid?" Allison said. "That's the first time she's admitted it."
"I think she means Tim Speedle. He's a character from CSI: Miami. Or rather was. He was killed."
"I thought you said you didn't know this fandom?"
"I didn't. But this computer has web access. I looked it up on the Internet."
Allison gave her partner a tired look. "I hate you so much right now."
Sue-C left the observation room. Tony tried to catch up with her, but Sue-C shook him off.
Then the action froze.
Allison looked around at the crowd of people. Nimble typing fingers hanging aimlessly above keyboards. Open mouths from which no sound came. "What?"
"Unfinished fic. You've seen this before."
"Yeah, but that time you opened up a portal for us."
"And now I'm curious where we are going to end up when the story restarts."
"You can't be serious."
"Sure I can be. It's the thing I do best."
Allison gave her partner an imploring look. When that didn't seem to work she braced herself for impact. The people and the furniture around her started to fade away. Other people and furniture started to fade in. Allison looked around. They were back at NCIS. "Did you know this?"
Tasmin nodded. "Well, actually, I had expected we would be returned to the other fic, but being returned to the beginning of this fic works, too."
Allison turned to look at the NCIS agents sat at their desks. Kate and McGee were doing some actual work; Tony was throwing pencils up. The Sue could be arriving any minute. She turned to her partner. "Do you suppose that's what the animosity between Sue-C and McGee is about, that he is the father of her kid?"
"Probably. But McGee once said he didn't think any of his old girlfriend would have a baby without telling him. I don't think he knows about this kid. He would have taken responsibility if she had told him. Even if he'd been only 18 or 19."
"So what's the charge here: that the Sue made him a bad judge of the character of his old girlfriends? He missassessed that she wouldn't tell him."
"She must have not told her father either. Gibbs knew the Sue and McGee were once involved. If he had known his grandson was McGee's kid, he would not have never said anything. If he had even suspected the kid was McGee's he would have brought them together a lot sooner to sort things out. And not by making his daughter a coworker." Tasmin pointed at Sue-C who just exited the lift with Gibbs. "But I don't think it can be a charge. We're just speculating. This fic was never finished so we are just guessing about what was supposed to have happened."
"There's still plenty of other charges," Allison said after studying the charge list for a moment. "When do we charge? I don't want to sit through this whole fic again."
"Pick a point where she's alone and we'll go there." Tasmin pulled the remote activator from her duffel bag.
"Where she's in the locker room about to take a shower. She's alone then."
Tasmin opened a portal and Allison gathered up the minis.
"This is not the locker room," Allison said. It was in fact the crime scene in the other fic.
"I can see that," Tasmin replied. She shook the remote activator. "Alternating between two fics must mess with its wiring. It's not as reliable any more as it used to be."
"We have as many charges against this Sue as against the other one. We'll just charge her first. This fic will cease to exits and we will default to that other fic - I hope - where we'll charge the other one."
Tasmin nodded in agreement. She returned the remote activator to her bag. "We'll have to wait in the fic for an opportune time for charging. I don't think portal travel is very reliable at the moment."
Allison frowned at the understatement.
The Sue and Ziva were inside Jacob's apartment. Gibbs and Tony were doing a search of the perimeter.
Tasmin and Allison cautiously looked around the door.
Ziva was in the bedroom. The bed was a mess and Ziva scanned the bed with UV light. She found semen.
"Looks like our victim was dealing with his stress of the Marines with a few nights with some girl," Ziva said.
"Or he consoled himself," Allison said.
"Which ever, he didn't use a condom."
"Or clean the bedsheets very often if Ziva found evidence of multiple nights of stress relief."
The Sue then remembered Jacob's girlfriend. Ziva called McGee to get an address on the girlfriend.
Ziva and the Sue took the sheets off the bed and put them in evidence bags. The Sue went to check out the bathroom, in the mean time, Gibbs and Tony returned to the apartment.
She was about to walk out of the bathroom when she noticed a small trash can. There were bloody tissues in it. "Uhh… scratch that." She picked one up and looked at it. "I think he's been cutting himself."
Tasmin slapped her hands over her eyes. "Jumping to conclusions, again. Why assume he's cutting himself? Why not assume he had a nose bleed?"
"Because of the way the tissues were folded?" Allison hazarded a guess.
Tasmin glared at her. "Why even assume it is his blood? No, the Sue says this guy was going to be a Marine, and all she's shown of him is that he's a good candidate for early dismissal."
In the living room Tony found a box of condoms on a shelf. The Sue turned off the lights and Ziva made another scan.
Enough evidence showed up that Jacob had been having sex other than in his bed.
"And that the condoms were just for show," Tasmin said.
McGee called: he had an address on the girlfriend. The NCIS agents left Jacob's apartment.
Tasmin and Allison, dragging the minis with them, quickly ran up the stairs to stay out of sight of the Sue.
All four NCIS agents went to the girlfriend to deliver her the bad news. The vic's girlfriend oggled Tony, until he told her why they had come to see her.
"I'm sorry to say this, but Jacob was killed almost a week ago," Tony said.
"What?" Tasmin had attempted to read the Words again, but this statement nearly made her jump from her skin. "It took them almost a week to secure the crime scene! They let the trail run cold! They didn't even bother to inform loved ones and relatives any sooner?"
Allison smacked her partner in the back of the head. "That's for using more than one exclamation mark."
Tasmin shook her head and glared at her partner. "Thanks. I think I deserved that. And that Sue deserves my full wrath for making me lose my cool." She pulled the remote activator from her bag. "I'm sorry, but I see no other way than to use this." She opened a portal.
The PPC agents and minis stepped into a kitchen. Allison gave Tasmin a questioning look. Tasmin shrugged her shoulders in reply.
"What are you doing here? Who are you?" the Sue said, when she walked into the kitchen. She took a step back. "Tony!"
"Shut up." Allison jumped the Sue, and with the help of the minis had her bound and gagged in no time.
Tony peered round the kitchen door, looking rather groggy, saw nothing of interest and went back to his bed.
Tasmin pointed her M1911 at the Sue. "Why are you at Tony's apartment?"
The Sue mumbled something incomprehensible. Allison removed her gag. The Sue shouted for Tony again, but stopped when Allison smacked her.
"It's no use. He can't hear you. You are under our influence now." She grinned. "Now, answer my partner's question."
The Sue pressed her lips together.
Allison turned to the Words that were still lighting up in the distance. "Says that because someone attacked her, Gibbs thought it best she alternated between staying at Tony's and Ziva's apartments. For protection."
Tasmin's face got an even grimmer expression. "Give me one good reason why I shouldn't kill you right now."
"Because we have to charge first and kill later," Allison said.
"Charge quickly, so I can kill sooner."
Tasmin hit the Sue with the butt of her gun. "And I really need you to stop opening your mouth. Allison?"
Allison put the gag back in place. The Sue stared daggers at the both of them.
"Katherine May Gibbs, Kitty for intimacy," Allison started. "We are Protectors of the Plot Continuum and we are here to charge you with crimes against fanfiction in general and NCIS fiction in particular. We charge you with being Gibbs' uncanonical daughter. We charge you with joining the NCIS and being put on your father's team. We charge you with having your job interview after being hired. We charge you with making Abby talk badly of Ducky."
At this charge Abbey, a miniature version of Abby looked shocked and shook her head vigorously.
"We charge you with making the NCIS agents dumb, making them not investigate a crime scene properly until a week later, and making them jump to completely unfounded conclusions. We charge you with making Ducky utter scientific nonsense. We charge you with making the characters incapable of doing anything unless you are in the room with them. In short, we charge you with being a Mary Sue.
"Your punishment for these crimes is death. You may not appeal. You're lucky to get a word in edgeways bef-" Allison stopped to wipe the splatter of blood from her face.
Tasmin had shot the Sue.
"You might have waited until I was done talking."
"You were starting to get wordy. My finger slipped."
Allison grumbled. She watched as the room around them started to expand. The kitchen cabinets turned into lockers and the overhead lights became brighter and less personal.
Wet footsteps came from the shower towards them. Tasmin raised her gun once again. Wrapped in a black towel, Sue-C stood before them. Her wet hair was dripping on her shoulders.
"Who are you?"
"We are Protectors of the Plot Continuum," Allison said. "Candice Speedle, we are here to charge you with crimes against fanfiction in general and NCIS fanfiction in particular."
"Excuse you. We charge you with bad paragraphing. Whoever told you to start a new paragraph when someone new starts talking was only telling a half truth. You should start a new paragraph when a new person's actions are mentioned, including when they start talking."
Sue-C an incredulous look. "You came to tell me that at gun point?"
"No, there's a few more things we'd like to tell you. At gun point. So be quiet and listen," Allison said. "We charge you with being Gibbs' uncanonical daughter. We charge you with working on his team. We charge you with taking a case that doesn't seem to have anything to do with the Navy. We charge you with not investigating that case properly. Rather than find out who the murder victim is and why she was murdered, you have DiNozzo sit behind his desk doing nothing, and you have everyone else running around trying to trace the owner of a driver's license found on the crime scene.
"We charge you dumbing everyone down to the point where they can't even do good detective work any more. We charge you with being the only intelligent person in the story. Yet, when Gibbs' life is in danger, you run to your car rather than take your phone from your pocket. We charge you with not being sensible and driving to Florida. There are quicker ways to get there. We charge you with not knowing the bullpen has a skylight for a ceiling, not a dropped ceiling as seen in offices the world over. We charge you with putting large quantities of pencils on Gibbs' and Tony's desks. We charge you with sexually harassing Tony."
"Sexual harassment is sexual harassment. The facts are not different because you are a woman and he is a man. We charge you with hitting a suspect because he harassed you. This is not okay behaviour for an NCIS agent, ever. But it very clearly showed your double standards in regards to sexual harassment. We charge you with making the canon characters constantly drop their jaw and incapable of giving rebuttals. We charge you with making Abby mean. We charge you with making Gibbs beat up a suspect. We think it is out-of-character for him to jeopardize a case like that. In short, we charge you with being a Mary Sue.
"Also," Allison gestured over to the minis, "we charge you with bad spelling. You have been charged. Tasmin is very much in bad mood today and she will shoot you now."
"What? N-" Sue-C stopped talking abruptly when the bullet entered her brain. She fell down with a dull thud.
"I wonder, should I also have charged her with using a black towel?" Allison asked. "It looks awfully bad ass."
"Meh," Tasmin said. "Let's go back to HQ. Take these two Sues to the incinerator and find these minis some responsible agents to take care of them."
Allison raised her eye brows.
"Or, you know, agents."