Gibbs could not get this case out of his mind. Too many things were not making sense and he didn’t like the way things were shaping up. He walked into the bullpen to see his team huddled around the plasma, they were engaged in a conversation that suddenly stopped as he approached.
“What have you got?”
“Well, Boss, I did some work on Lieutenant Commander Harris’ background,” McGee said with a nervous tone.
“Ok, what did you find McGee?”
“Well, I looked into her background to see if she has any enemies or anyone in her past that might come after her and we are just thinking it has to do with the Hill case.”
“Right, ok, so what did you find?”
“Well she grew up in foster homes…her mother died when she was 4 and her birth certificate didn’t have a father’s name on it so she went into the system. She was passed around from family to family, had a pretty rough childhood. When she was 16 she went through some boxes her mother left her and found her father’s name and tried to contact him,” McGee’s voice trailed off.
Ziva, Tony and McGee all looked at Gibbs as if to gauge his response to the where this conversation was leading.
“Ok…go on McGee.”
“Right,” they all turned back around and stared at the plasma, “She graduated top of her class. She has no other family to speak of; she has never been married and has no children. She isn’t dating, and has one of the most successful win ratios at JAG.”
“So Boss, McGeek is really just telling us that all of the bad guys she has put away have a reason to not like her, but that is about it. “
“I think this is related to the Hill case.”
“Gee Ziva, ya think?” Gibbs asked as he turned and walked back to his desk.
“DiNozzo, I want you to interview Hill. I understand he is being jailed here locally for now. Find out from him what he knows about this whole deal.”
“Ziva, I want you to talk to Lieutenant Commander Regan, I think there is more to his relationship with Harris then he is letting us in on.”
“McGee, had any luck with the files on her computer?”
“Not really, Abby is still running the decoder on the system to see if she can piece together an algorithm to let us in.”
“McGee, a simple ‘no’ would have worked. Stay on that with Abby, I want to know what she has in the files for this case.” Gibbs turned and walked toward the elevator.
~ * ~
Gibbs strolled into the office of Admiral Hurst. He didn’t knock; he just walked in, unannounced.
“You know Admiral a few things stuck me as odd when you recounted your story about how you found Lieutenant Commander Harris.”
“Special Agent Gibbs, I wasn’t expecting you. I am sorry, what do you find odd?”
“Why would Ms. Harris be calling you at midnight? You would think she might call 911 or the guard house, but she was calling you. Doesn’t that strike you as odd? And how is it that you seem to have a key to her home? “
“Jillian is like a daughter to me…she has not had an easy life…she is alone in this world. Her mother is dead; her father is not involved in her life… She has no one. She eats dinner with me and my wife on a regular basis – I don’t have kids Special Agent Gibbs, she is like my daughter.”
“If you are so protective of her, why didn’t you let the authorities know about the letters and the threats?”
“She wouldn’t let me. She was afraid that if NCIS knew about the threats and did something about it that it would ruin the case. She was afraid they would take over the case and all of her work would be for nothing. She might be able to prosecute if something came out of a formal investigation, but she wanted to be more involved. She really doesn’t like you guys for some reason”
“Do you know how much danger she is in?”
“I have an idea, she hasn’t told anyone about how bad the phone calls are to her house. I took her home one night after dinner, just as we got in the door the phone rang. She picked it up and I swear all of the blood drained from her face. She was terrified. I tried to get her to go back home with me, but she wouldn’t have it. She brushed it off and told me to go home.”
“The call came after she walked in? Someone was watching her…they knew her movements.” Gibbs got up from his chair and started to walk out of the Admiral’s office. He turned back around and said, “She never gave you details of what was said?”
“No, she just told me I should go home and that she would be fine.”
“Thank you Admiral.” Gibbs dialed his cell phone as he made his way to his car. “DiNozzo? Have you met with Hill yet?”
“I just got to the prison Boss, checking in now.”
“Don’t…how far are you from Bethesda?”
“About 10 minutes, why?”
“Get to the hospital; I think Harris might be in more danger than we thought. We need to get her in protective custody.”
“On my way Boss.”
~ * ~
Jillian was feeling better; the constant pounding in her head had stopped. She was sure it had to do with the medication. She was sore though, the bruises all over her body made her ache every time she attempted to move. She could vaguely remember her reaction to NCIS coming into her room the day before. She knows she should not have reacted that way, but she couldn’t help it. She had spent so much time trying to avoid working with them, especially on this case and now they were taking over.
As she collected her thoughts, the door to her room slid open and a man came into her room, he was speaking on a cell phone, “I’m here; she is by herself. Ok, on it.”
“What is going on??”
“Sorry to just barge in on you Lieutenant Commander. I’m Special Agent Anthony DiNozzo with NCIS, I was here yesterday talking to you about what happened on the night of your attack.”
“Oh! You are one of the agents I got a little emotional on, right? I am sorry about that.”
“Well, you were coming out of a stressful situation ma’am. We understood.”
“Not sure I have any other information that might help you. I think I gave you everything I could remember yesterday.”
“Well, um, we found some evidence that led us to believe you were being watched even more closely than first imagined. We wanted to make sure you were not by yourself, didn’t want anything to happen to you while we are trying to figure out…what exactly happened to you.” Tony said and flashed one his famous smiles.
“Well, thanks Special Agent DiNozzo.”
“Tony, you can call me Tony.”
“Ok,” Jillian said with a smile. It has been awhile since she had done that. “Tony, I appreciate you worrying about me. This entire case has me so tied up in knots. I don’t know who I can trust anymore.”
As Jillian smiled and talked to Tony, Gibbs approached her room. He could see through the glass wall that she was sitting up and the swelling in her face was beginning to go down. She looked exactly like her mother, the resemblance was unreal. He didn’t want to walk into the room and face her, but he had no choice. He had a job to do and right now that job was to protect her and find out who was coming after her.
Gibbs took a deep breath and slowly slid the door open. Jillian stopped speaking and turned toward the door, the smile on her face slowly faded, this was not the way she wanted to start her day.