Later that night, after everyone had gone home, Tony was pretending to work late on a case, waiting for the director to leave. By the time he finally left, the other man didn't seem to suspect a thing, just wished Tony a good night, and good luck on the information he'd lied about looking for before he slipped out of the building. Tony only waited long enough to make sure the director wouldn't suspect that he was being followed before he shut his computer down and left as well.
It didn't look suspicious at first, the man just getting into his car and pulling out of his parking space, heading for the highway. Still, Tony followed, because he'd promised Abby, and he stayed far enough behind that he wouldn't look suspicious. When the car stopped outside a cafe and the director went inside, it looked as though he would just be having dinner alone, but nearly fifteen minutes later, three more men joined him, two of them he recognized from when Ziva had been warning him about her past.
He had the proof he needed, and he took a few snapshots of his own, making sure it had the time and date stamps in case they needed them for some reason. "Gotcha," he said to himself, flipping through the photos he had to make sure the men were visible.
DiNozzo was so absorbed in the photos that he didn't notice anyone approaching until they were on his and everything had gone black, three new men standing over him, one with a tire iron in his hand, the others being motioned over as someone barked through the radio in his hand.
Eight hours later had Abby worried, but this was Tony and Tony could take care of himself, that's what she kept telling herself as she walked around her lab, hugging her stuffed hippo, giving him a squeeze and finding herself oddly relaxed from the flatulent sound coming out of her stuffed friends rear end. "Oh Tony, why did you go?!" she huffed as she passed, she couldn't go to McGee or Ziva-Ziva would blame herself and McGee would probably tell someone, the only person she could trust with this was Tony-or Gibbs.
After chewing at her fingernail and staring at the phone for a moment, she finally shoved the stuffed hippo onto the table and grabbed the phone, dialing Gibbs' number and waiting for him to pick up. She almost hung up, but if nothing else, Gibbs could assure her that Tony was fine-he had always been good at calming her nerves.
"Gibbs," Abby repeated with a frown, the worry clear in her voice.
"Abby! I haven't heard from you in weeks."
"I think something's wrong with Tony." 'There was no time for small talk right now!' Abby thought to herself and just jumped right in.
"What's wrong with Tony?"
Abby took a deep breath, preparing herself for the small speech that she needed to give to explain what had been going on. "We had to get a new director and he's a real creep, Gibbs. And Ziva wasn't very sure about him either, and now he's been hanging around friends of her father's and her family is dangerous, Gibbs, they're really dangerous! Worse than Ari! So I did what I had to do, right? I told Tony about it because you left and you made him the director of the team, so I told him. He needed to know, Gibbs, and I thought he would be fine, he was just going to check it out. But he said he was going to look into it last night, and now it's morning, Gibbs, and he's not at work and he hasn't called, and I just don't know what to do!" she rattled out, only stopping to take in one breath in the midst of all her talking , and by the end she was panting into the phone, sounding even more worried than she had been before she'd made the call.
"Why the hell did he go out there alone?! Why didn't he have back-up, Abby?!"
Abby pursed her lips and flailed her free hand a little, looking frustrated and almost ready to cry. "I didn't think about it, Gibbs. He was only supposed to be having a look," she said after a few moments of trying to come up with a good reason.
"And what am I supposed to do about it? I'm not exactly a short drive away."
"I don't know, Gibbs," Abby admitted after a second, still frowning. "I just... I just need you here. We all do, Gibbs."
Putting the phone down without answering her, Gibbs rubbed at his sun darkened face, feeling the facial hair rough under his hand before he was turning around and looking at everything he had here. He hadn't wanted to go back at all, but he supposed they needed him-DiNozzo needed him to save his ass again, why wasn't that surprising? He remembered the first day he'd met him, how unkempt he'd been, late to the interview after having resigned from his last job as a Baltimore cop after finding out his partner was a dirty cop.
He'd been there working a laundering case which had overlapped the young man's and he-Gibbs had helped Tony find out the truth before he invited the cop to join NCIS. From the moment he'd met him he'd felt protective over him and he'd known in his gut then that Tony was a good man and that he was more than just trouble.
Gibbs had a bad feeling in his gut right now.
The older NCIS agent headed into the bedroom, dialing the number for the airport to book a flight back to Washington, D.C.
It was time to find Tony.