(the Title links to the original post, where you can also read lots of other Highlander fics and Highlander crossover fics that - like Three Views - were written for the ficathon)
Written for: Strangevisitor7
…who requested: Gen, Crossover, Richie, Duncan, Methos, Amanda,Fitz, Joe… & prefers Humor, action/adventure.
Characters/Pairings: Michelle Lee, Ziva David, Tony DiNozzo, Leon Vance, Joe Dawson. Mention of Kit O’Brady.
Thanks to my beta, Dorothy1901, for all your assistance.
…any remaining errors are entirely my own, made after the beta-reading.
Warnings: Mention of a character’s death, but it takes place in the first paragraph.
Author's Notes: For those unfamiliar with the recent episodes in the newest season of NCIS, I’ve learned that the episode is at:
Joe’s retirement is mentioned and explained in this official post-show episode starring Joe, Amanda, and Methos: Reunion.
Summary: Three observations, from three people, on the death and reviving of NCIS Special Agent Michelle Lee.
. * . * . * .
Michelle Lee, Immortal, NCIS Special Agent
Special Agent Michelle Lee lay dying on the bus floor, breath and pulse getting weaker as blood – she was bleeding to death. My daughter is safe, that’s all that matters. Before she dies, she thinks she smiles, thinks she mouths “Thank you” to Gibbs when he’s leaning over her. She’s safe, and held that as a comfort against the familiar pain of dying.
When she can think again, when she can breathe again, Michelle finds herself in a darkness too complete to be natural. This is part of why I told Jimmy that I was curious about everything – how it all worked, from the transport van to the body bags; the other reason was for the look on his face as he got to pass on his hard-earned knowledge. She unzips the bag from the inside, slides out of the bag and then sneaks out of the bus, grabbing an abandoned jacket to cover her dried bloodstains, her expression telling people that she belongs here, projecting an air of confidence, of ‘I know where I’m going, so don’t get in my way.’
And it worked. Just like every other time she’d done it. People only look at you with suspicion if you don’t think you belong there.
Until Lee was halfway through the crowd that’d gathered at the edge of the police tape, almost out the other side of the crowd, free and clear. And she felt the buzz, that distinct sensation rippling through mind and body. It had only one cause: another Immortal.
Her teacher’s words echoed in her thoughts: ‘Always find out who it is who’s out there. Decide what to do after that.’ Good ol’ Kit O’Brady; Michelle hoped he was still around. And while normally she would have said ‘Hello? My name is Lee’ - Keep it short, keep it simple – without a sword, she avoided the alley and headed for shelter.
. * . * . * .
Ziva David, Mossad
McGee and Jimmy looked sympathetic when they left – McGee with Gibbs, Jimmy with Ducky. When Tony stopped in to say bye for the night, he sounded sympathetic, but he never looked at me – just at Michelle all tucked away in her body bag. “So long,” he said before leaving too.
I leave my spot to handle a disturbance by the front of the bus, and there are officers handling the rowdy ones by the time I reach the driver’s seat. I turn around to head back, and it looks like – no, it cannot be; impossible. I rush back to prove myself wrong. A body bag does not become empty for no reason.
But it is – empty, inexplicably empty. I search between the seats, under them, and find nothing, not a clue or a hint as to how anyone stole her body. Did Gibbs have Ducky take the body with him, leaving me with a bag that I only now realize was empty? Why would he do that? Are there more people we’re trying to snag? Pretty sure the word is snag.
I look out the windows in the hope of seeing someone or several someones laboring with the weight of a dead body.
And what I see is – contradictory? Impossible and happening? Fable-izing? For once I wouldn’t mind Tony being here to correct my English.
Because I see Agent Lee! Just for a second, I see her in the crowd on the other side of the police Do Not Cross tape. Just for a second, because then the crowd swallows her up again.
I call it in, because even if it’s all in my head and Michelle’s still dead and in the body bag, I can’t just sit here and do nothing! “DiNozzo,” he says on answering.
When I was little, my aunt used to tell me stories about the dybbuk and the ibbur, which were souls able to take command of the bodies of the living. But that’s not what we’re dealing with here. And I don’t tell Tony about the ibbur or about the dybbuk, but that’s all I omit.
“I’ll swing on by,” he tells me, and I can hear cars honking at him.
“Right now,” I suggest, even after the horns’ve died down.
“Well yeah. Kinda thought that was part of the whole ‘in silent agreement’ thing.”
“Sorry,” I snap at him.
. * . * . *.
Joe Dawson, Watcher [Retired]
How is it that Immortals can always talk me into things? I’m retired, yet Methos convinced me I need to take a vacation out on the East Coast.
Well, no sooner do I get here and settle in to a bite at a nice spot, than a gunfight breaks out – and at the heart of it all is Nurse Park, my favorite nurse back in Vietnam even before I knew what an Immortal was. They say you never forget your first Immortal, and that’s true; but you also don’t forget your second – and in my case, my second was the Immortal Michelle Lee who was found and trained by Kit O’Brady.
And now I’ve been called in to NCIS HQ itself, on account of my being seniormost agent in the area, retired or not. “Need anything?” Director Vance asks me.
“Nah, I’m fine,” I tell him.
“Officer David is here to see you,” Vance’s secretary says over the phone.
“Send her in,” he says.
The secretary brings the young lady in, and shuts the door. Ziva David steps forward.
“This is Joe Dawson,” Vance says.
“Hey,” I say to Ziva, offering my hand.
“Hello, sir,” she says, and I can see the wheels turning in that pretty little head of hers: ‘Is that really his name?’ and ‘Why is he here?’
“Take a seat, Officer David,” Vance tells her. “Relax.”
“Relax, sir?” she asks.
“That’s right, relax. You did what you were supposed to do. You kept your head in a confusing situation.”
“Sorry about that, by the way,” I tell her. Before she came in, Vance had told me what happened. “It’s my job to work under peoples’ noses,” which is true of all Watchers, not just me, “and there was an opening at the time.”
“We’d expected him to arrive for Agent Lee’s body in the morning.”
“So…” Ziva asks, looking at me, her eyes desperate for confirmation of something, and I think I know what of. “It was you? You took her body when I – I was only gone for a few seconds.”
I shrug. “Like I said, I work unnoticed – it’s better that way.”
“So you took her body?” I nod. “She didn’t…”
“Didn’t what, Officer David?” Vance asks.
“Nothing,” sitting up perfectly straight and looking forwards. As one of my Watcher instructors would say, she’s all present and correct.
But I know what’s going on behind those eyes of hers. She saw Agent Lee from the bus, and she knows it’s not possible, but she’s been trained to trust her senses, and that includes what she sees. I’ve been there, in her shoes…back in Vietnam.
Also before Ziva walked in, Vance asked me what I had been doing before being called in this morning. And I told him ‘what I was supposed to be doing.’
I had been sitting there, Watching. Watching Lee, and at the same time, she was watching her adopted daughter… and Michelle started to cry. If she’d been more like Kronos or one of the other Immortals that MacLeod’s fought, I’d not doubt that Michelle would show up at her daughter’s house to resume being a mother to the girl.
I’ll admit I was tempted to play the kindly stranger and give her some tissues, see where it went from there.
But I didn’t. Just like she didn’t try and talk to a little girl who thinks her mom died.
And I don’t go into detail, to either of them, Ziva or Vance.
Ziva’s mother is a Watcher. Ziva’s half-brother’s mother was a Watcher. I think ours is the only organization Ziva’s father doesn’t know about. And I think Vance – her father’s friend – is going to say her father is the reason we shouldn’t induct Ziva into the Watchers.
His call, this time. Next time? I don’t know. Next time, it might not be as dismissable or explainable.
. * . * . * .