Becky (elisabec) wrote,

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Fic: Laud and Tarnish 6/?

A new part in my ts/ncis writing exercise, partially written while on vacation and typed up and edited once I got back.  I must admit that I'd forgotten that I'd even written this for several days.  Oops!


previous parts:
{prologue} {one} {two} {three} {four} {five}

Disclaimers: TS belongs to Paramount/Pet Fly.  NCIS belongs to Paramount/Belisarius.

Laud and Tarnish -- TS/NCIS crossover


Sometimes Blair felt that the years of his life ‘pre-Jim’ belonged to someone else entirely.

During those rare moments when he wasn’t trying to keep up with the pace of being a cop’s (and sentinel’s) partner -- moments which were usually spent camping or sitting in a hospital waiting room -- he’d wondered what his life would’ve been like had he not had a friend at the hospital to send him that fax, had he not been at Rainier the day Jim stopped by, or if he hadn’t followed the angry cop out in time to save the frisbee-zoned sentinel from being flattened by a truck.  Years of teaching fresh young minds and global travel and archeological digs and research stretched out before his mind’s eye, following the path of someone who’d never boldly (and badly, he admitted) impersonated a doctor to meet a surly detective and hand out one of his few business cards....

Someone who’d never lived this life or known Jim.

Blair blinked at the shotgun a few inches from his head, sensing a stillness behind him as Jim tensed in response to the danger.  He watched Abby freeze, eyes widening in terror as she stared cross-eyed into the shotgun barrel.  The phone continued to sing at them from inside her bag, accompanied by the muffled gasps of other patrons near them as they realized what was happening.  From somewhere behind him, Blair could hear the scared  “Daddy?” spoken in a scratchy whisper by one of the girls on the other side of the counter.

I wouldn’t change a thing.

He spoke up quietly.  “Um...let’s just...”  He slowly raised his hands and placed one on Abby’s arm, the one she had half-buried in her bag.  “She wasn’t thinking.  She’s not going to answer it, okay?”

Abby didn’t move other than to swallow.  Gun remaining steady, the thug shifted his eyes over to nail Blair with his glare.  Knowing Jim, he was currently calculating the chances of revealing his hidden gun and then taking out the thug before he shot Abby.  Bad, bad odds.

“Abby?” he prompted, squeezing her arm gently.

She jerked.  “What..?  Oh,, it’s just he--”  The phone cut off, the call diverting to voicemail.

The thug stared at her another moment, then moved the gun away from her face as he said loud enough to be heard throughout the lobby, “No calls.  Or--”

Abby’s phone cut through his words, the same tune overriding his voice.  She gave a nervous laugh.  “He’s gonna keep calling until I answer.”

The thug frowned and thrust out a hand.  “Give it to me.”

Blair released her arm as Abby pulled her hand from her bag and held up the imperiously ringing phone, jerking her hand back as the man yanked it from her clutching fingers.  As the thug worked on the mechanics of flipping open the phone and not dropping the shotgun, Blair’s eyes were caught by the changing images on the silent tv screens.  He bit down on his surprise at seeing the outside of the bank, the front end of a police car, and a reporter motioning toward the bank entrance while the words of “gunshots reported” and “unknown number of armed gunmen” scrolled across the bottom of the screen.  The camera panned across the bank and surrounding area -- the truck (*of course*) they’d rented sat snugly in the parking lot

One day in DC and we’re on the news.  Won’t Simon be thrilled.  We’re not even on a case.  The passing thought jolted him out of his headspace, harshly reminding him just why he was on the opposite coast.  He closed his eyes as grief crashed over him, pulling a gasp from his closed throat.  A hand -- Jim’s -- touched his back.  Trust him to hear that over Abby’s ringtone.

The phone cut off again and then started ringing again two seconds later.

“Who’s Gibbs?”

Gibbs?  Blair’s eyes popped open.  Gibbs, her boss, Gibbs?

Abby’s answer came out in a rush of scrambled words.  “My...boyfriend.  Gibbs is my boyfriend  Gibbs is actually his last name.  He hates his real name so everyone calls him Gibbs.  I call him Gibbs.  Mostly.  Kinda.  I only use his name when he--”

The thug shoved the phone at her, growling.  “Answer it on speaker.  Tell him you’re fine.”  He waggled the shotgun at her as an unneeded reminder.

Abby’s hands shook as she took the phone, fumbling for the ‘talk’ button.  Concerned she wouldn’t have the calmness she needed to convince the gunman not to shoot her, Blair leaned into her shoulder, hoping to ground her.  She locked shaky eyes on him as she spoke.  “You’ve got Abby.”

A tense, angry voice rang through the speaker even before she finished her name.  “Abby, where are you?  Why didn’t you answer the phone?  I need you to-”

Blair could hear other voices behind his in the background and realized this Gibbs had her on speaker phone as well, something Abby recognized as well as she interrupted his tirade, babbling over his voice.  “Leroy, I’m fine.  Errands are taking longer than I thought.”  She chewed at her lower lip.  “You really need to stop worrying about me all the time.”

The ensuing silence strung out for a few interminably long seconds.  Blair glanced down at the phone in Abby’s hand, noting that the muffled background voices had ceased. 

Gibbs’ voice came back across the line, slower, sounding reluctant and grudging.  “All right, Abby.  I’ll hold lunch a half-hour, then I’m eating.  And don’t call me Leroy”

A tiny smile quirked up one side of Abby’s mouth as she nervously pulled at one of her pigtails with her other hand.  “Half an hour.  Okay.  Love you too, Leroy.”

A half-heard grunt, then a click as the call was disconnected at the other end.  Abby’s hand clenched whitely around the phone for several seconds before the thug snatched it and turned it off.  Blair heard the strangled sob in her voice in the “no” of protest she gave as the man stormed away with her lifeline to Gibbs.  Her empty hand continued to hang in the air until Blair reached up and tugged it down, clasping it warmly in his as she turned her head into his shoulder.

Blair grimaced.  Whoever this Gibbs is, I really hope he got her message.



go to part seven

Tags: fic: laud and tarnish, ncis, ts
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