Becky (elisabec) wrote,
Becky
elisabec

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Fic: Laud and Tarnish 15/?

I know, I write so very slowly... I knew what I wanted to do for this part; it just took awhile to find the right words.  Plus, you know, quilting is so distracting....  

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previous parts:
{prologue} {one} {two} {three} {four} {five} {six} {seven} {eight} {nine} {ten} {eleven} {twelve} {thirteen} {fourteen}

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

Laud and Tarnish - TS/NCIS crossover

{fifteen}

Leaning against his desk as he nursed his second cup of coffee for the morning, Simon stared at the boxes, file folders, evidence bags, and too-thick packets of crime scene photos stacked on his conference table.  Though the most recent Major Crime case had ended a day and a half earlier, paperwork and closing reports still remained as well as archiving everything currently in front of him.  For several moments, he regretted the absence of his lead detective and his partner, but shook that regret away.

Making Ellison and Sandburg take time off was the right thing to do.  Not that getting word of a friend’s sudden death and then flying to DC with barely time to pack was what I had in mind.  He rubbed his forehead.  Damnit.  From the moment the case had been given to Major Crime, the Ellison-Sandburg team had dug in and not stopped until the day it ended, working on little sleep and half-eaten meals.

The Acker case. 

In a three-week period, it had gone from being a simple case of a missing child - Danielle Acker, six years old, lost in the park on a Sunday morning - to homicide.  Then it became two.  The case was bumped up to Major Crime at the beginning of week four when a third child disappeared.

*~*~*~*

“I want this case.”

Expecting that very response, Simon only nodded and gestured Jim to his office.  “Case files, reports, profile attempts, witness reports, photographs, all inside, waiting for you.”  The sentinel swept by him without a word, immediately yanking files from boxes.  Simon suspected that Jim had already been trying to find the killer in his off-duty time, frustrated that by lack of direct access to the case itself.

Two hours later, as he and Jim were scouring the files and photographs and reports, looking for any kind of pattern or hint that would reveal where the children were being held, Blair entered the office, straight from the University.

“Jim.  Simon.”

Simon looked up, blinking several times to refocus.  “Sandburg.”

Across from him, Jim’s hand stilled where he was writing some notes.  His head came up and he met Simon’s eyes for a long moment.  It was the first time in a long time that he’d seen hesitation in Jim’s face, the need to protect Blair from the particular gruesomeness of this case.  Then Jim closed his eyes and with a soft intake of breath, stood and turned to face his partner in the doorway.

By now Simon was used to the silent conversations between them, although he was never quite sure if it stemmed from the sentinel thing, the partners things, or the friends thing.  *Or all of the above.*  He’d heard it described as both creepy and cool by his son and others.

It’s only creepy if I understand what they’re saying.  Like now.  Three seconds to say ‘I wish you didn’t’ and ‘I know but you’ll need me’.

Outloud all Jim said was “It’s bad” as he stepped aside for Blair to join them at the table, one hand touching his back.  Horror whitened Blair’s face as he got his first glance of the photos of the victims.  He lifted one hand to hover above the face of the child in the topmost photo, fingers not quite shaking.  His mouth moved silently.

“Chief?”  Simon could hear the double questions of ‘are you okay?’ and ‘are you sure you can do this?’ in Jim’s soft voice.

In reply, Blair pulled out a notebook and pen from his ever-present backpack.  “Catch me up.”

Five weeks and three children later, Jim and Blair identified and tracked down Luke Anderson, and with two SWAT teams, stopped the child killer just as he going to murder his sixth victim.  In rage at being discovered, Anderson attacked the armored police and was killed himself in a barrage of bullets.

*~*~*~*

Simon sighed and took another swallow of coffee, grimacing as he realized it had gone cold.  He stepped around his desk to the coffee maker to refresh the mug when his office door opened and Rhonda stepped inside.  One look at her wide eyes and Simon braced himself for bad news.  “What is it?”

“The FBI office in DC just called to confirm Detective Ellison’s identity and the serial number for his gun.”

“What?!”

Just then his private office phone line rang.  Glancing down at the familiar number, Simon snatched up the receiver and snapped, “Sandburg!  Why is the FBI calling about Jim?”

There was a pause, then a quiet reply.  *“Simon.  The FBI called?  Already?”*

He heard the sound of a woman’s muffled voice, rising in a querying tone.

*“I wasn’t... Um... There was...”*

A realization struck Simon with cold clarity.  The FBI calling meant Jim had fired his weapon but if Blair was doing the calling, then something had gone wrong.  And Blair was sounding uncharacteristically tongue-tied, even considering current circumstances.  He deliberately gentled his voice, trying to infuse patience into it.  “Blair, take a breath, tell me what happened.”

He heard Blair breathe in deeply, then speak in quick, short words.  *“Short version.  We went to a bank to meet with the lawyer.  We got bank robbers instead.  Jim had his gun.  Four to one.  Jim won.  Sort of.”*

Simon groaned, knowing before he asked.  “Shot?”

*“Yeah.  Shoulder and leg.  He’s in emergency right now.”*

“Where?”  He grabbed a pen and a piece of scratch paper.

*“Bethesda.”*  A pause, then Blair spoke quieter, frantic worry creeping into his voice.  *“The doctors here, they don’t...they’re not...  I explained what I could.”*  A minute pause, then his voice dropped again.  *“The injuries didn’t seem that bad, Simon, but he passed out at the scene.  Jim doesn’t--”*

Hearing the unspoken comment that this was quite probably sentinel-related, Simon rubbed his forehead as his worry doubled.  “I’ll call his physician and let him know of the situation.”   He asked, “Sandburg, are you okay?”

*“Yeah, not a scratch.  Just really, really ... tired.”*

“Then find somewhere to sit down.  There's nothing you can do right now.  You won’t help Jim by passing out on the floor.”  A soft half-laugh from Blair.  “And keep me posted.”

*“Yes, sir.”*

tbc....

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go to part sixteen


Tags: fic: laud and tarnish, ncis, ts
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