AUTHOR: Ashleigh Anpilova
CHARACTER: Ziva David
SUMMARY: Set during Judgment Day before the scene in Vance's office. Ziva makes a decision.
WORD COUNT: 500
DISCLAIMER: I don't own these characters, nor am I making any money from them. I merely borrow them from time to time.
She sits on the floor in her apartment. Her knees drawn up to her chest, her head bent over, her long hair shrouding her face, her arms around her knees, holding them tightly, so tightly it hurts. She welcomes the physical pain. Alone in her apartment, in the dark, alone as she has always been, as she always will be, she finally allows the tears to fall down her cheeks.
Jenny is dead. Jenny died because of something she did not do. Jenny died because Tony wanted an afternoon off. Jenny died because she listened to Tony and not her instinct. Jenny died because of her. It would be easy to blame Tony, but he is not to blame; he followed Jenny's orders; he was simply . . . Tony. She should not have let him persuade her.
Jenny is dead. Another person she loved is dead.
Ari: dead by her own hand.
And now Jenny.
That is it. She will never again love anyone. She cannot face the pain of losing someone else whom she loves.
She will never again get close to anyone.
It is time; time she went home. Home to her father - the one person she has left. The one person she still, in spite of everything he has done, loves. One day she will lose him and it will hurt. Maybe going home and becoming reconciled with him will hurt more than if she stays in America, but she will go home. She longer wishes to be in America. There is no point her staying; not now Jenny is dead.
She has no one at NCIS; no one likes her. Abby dislikes her; Tony flirts with her, but he flirts with all women; McGee is polite to her; despite saving Gibbs's life, she knows he will never trust her and if Gibbs cannot trust, he cannot like; Palmer, she rarely spoke to. The only person who has shown her any kind of genuine affection is Ducky and he does not count. He is simply an old man who should have retired years ago. She has never understood Ducky. He always treated her in a gentlemanly way; he never understood her.
No one will miss her. Quite possibly no one will even notice she has gone.
She raises her head and looks around her apartment. There is little of her here; there is nothing, personal except for a photograph and a few books.
She reaches for the phone and dials a number. When he answers she pauses for a second about to address him in the Hebrew way a daughter addresses her father. But then she knows this will be her last second of independence. "Papa? I wish to come home."
THE NEXT DAY
The team, including Abby, Palmer and Ducky, stand in Ziva's apartment just staring around.
"She's gone, boss."
"Yeah, noticed that, DiNozzo."
For a moment there is silence. Then Ducky says softly, "It is as if she has never been here; as if she never existed."