Spoilers (naturally) behind the cut.
So in his latest piece of information (which we all know might or might not be true) Ausiello has said:
Actually, word around NCIS is that the buzzed-about death won't be the biggest surprise of the season. Consider this line from Director Vance to Gibbs from the two-hour season finale: "If you think you can protect them forever, Jethro, you are mistaken. There's already been one casualty. There will be more." What does mean?! Beats me!
As plutos_revenge said, is 'Director Vance' just a slip? Or is it telling us it really is going to be Jenny? I'm for the former - or we're going to get two people leaving. One by death, the other (Jenny) under arrest.
We both thought the choice of the word 'casualty' was an interesting one, not necessarily the word you often use. Also who is 'them'? Are we referring to the team? And from what is Jethro protecting them?
Also, don't forget we also know that 'long term fans will be shocked by something'. And '"We've had flashbacks to a relationship that Jenny and Gibbs had in Paris while they were working undercover," says executive producer Shane Brennan. "Now the secret past will come back to haunt them, leading to an emotionally devastating two-hour season finale".'
Actually, I must admit that once Shane did his comment about 'the past coming back to haunt Gibbs and Jenny re: their affair in Paris' and we'll something that will shock long time fans, for me the death did slip down in 'shockingness'.
And then I had my light-bulb moment.
It is possible to use the term 'them' to refer to a single person, not a group of people. In fact recognised writers have used it - after all a lot of the time people use 'they' if they want to avoid the whole 'his/her' gender thing, or don't know it.
Generic he was a preference in usage, not a binding grammatical "rule", as Thackeray's use of both forms demonstrates. "The alternative to the masculine generic with the longest and most distinguished history in English is the third-person plural pronoun. Recognized writers have used they, them, themselves, and their to refer to singular nouns such as one, a person, an individual, and each since the 1300s.
Also, it could be deliberate mis-use of the term to make us think Vance means plural 'them' i.e. the team.
So - my theory is:
Now this would certainly shock long term fans that Gibbs would do this - and I don't like the idea that he would, but OTOH we know how damn loyal he is to him team and without proof positive (which he hasn't got) he's not going to throw her to the wolves.
And . . . And . . . This scenario would rule out a child.
It also ties in with another little snippet plutos_revenge's shared with me today from Spoiler Fix. Mike Franks is doing research on behalf of Gibbs. Gibbs is in Jenny's house, while the team and Vance are back at NCIS Headquarters.
I am also now seriously thinking we are going to lose two people - one to death (DiNozzo or Ziva) and one to arrest (Jenn). To me the whole 'Jenny is the one to be leaving is sooo obvious, that I just have this sinking feeling it isn't going to be her who dies. I do sincerely hope I am wrong.