Tony laughed nervously, "Tim, you're not Phoenix."
"You're working on the '80's description?" Tim asked getting madder by the second the alcohol fuelling his bravado. "Long brown/blonde hair – I cut it, scrawny – I grew up Tony. Scar on my face – still there." He said pointing.
"Blue eyes Tim. You have green. Stop covering for your friend." Tony snapped.
Tim reached up, took out his contact lenses, and looked at them.
His eyes were a brilliant blue.
Gibbs looked stunned, he could see that Tim had his eyes and was surprised no one else could see it.
"Contact lenses Tony, can't see without them," He said and stepped back. Lost his footing and fell on his butt.
He just sat there and giggled.
"How much have you had to drink?" Gibbs asked.
"Just two bottles, boss." Tim said
"Of beer?" Ziva asked him.
"Bourbon." Tim slurred and leant back against Gibbs' desk.
"Come on." Gibbs said and lifted Tim up. "We need to sober you up."
"Boss, what about Tim being Phoenix," Tony said.
Gibbs glared at him, "No one questions him, until Ducky has checked him out and he is sober. Understood!" he growled.
Both Ziva and Tony nodded and watched as Gibbs guided Tim to the elevator. "Come on Tim, we're going to see Ducky."
"Am I dead?" Tim asked.
Gibbs smiled and put a steadying arm around Tim's shoulders. "Not yet, you may feel like it tomorrow though."
Ducky looked up from his paperwork as Gibbs and Tim entered autopsy.
Tim climbed onto one of the empty tables and lay down.
"Hey Ducky, I think I'm dead." Tim said.
Ducky looked at Gibbs, "Jethro?" He asked,
"Two bottles of Bourbon and a huge confession, apparently Tim is the guy we are after."
"Oh?" Ducky said shocked, "Let's have a look at you Timothy." He said and helped Tim to sit.
"Oh my Jethro?" He said as he looked into Tim's eyes without the contacts.
"Yeah I see it Duck," Gibbs said, "Can you give him something to help with the hangover."
"I have some painkillers he will be able to take in the morning; I assume you plan to have someone question him over this Phoenix thing." Ducky said
"In the morning," Gibbs said vaguely, "I'll take him back to mine tonight and then bring him back after he's sobered up."
The doors to Autopsy opened and Abby ran in, "Oh my God, Gibbs is it true, you're going to arrest my Timmy, he's not Phoenix, Gibbs. He can't be!"
"Hey Abby, you're pretty!" Tim smiled. She stopped and looked at him.
"Bourbon! Tim! You know you can't hold your liquor, why were you drinking?" she said turning on him.
"Mom died Abby; my dad's not my dad and hates me. An' I'm a wanted Hacker, my life sucks Abbs." Tim slurred.
Abby went to hug Tim but he pushed her away, "No Abby, I don't deserve it." He tried to get up and stumbled.
"Take him home Jethro and bring him back to me in the morning." Ducky said.
Gibbs picked Tim up, "Abbs can you tell the others to go home. We'll pick this up again in the morning." He told her.
Once they had made it back to Gibbs' house and he had got Tim settled into the guest room, Gibbs made himself a coffee and found himself leaning against the doorframe watching his son sleep.
His hand slid into his pants pocket, touching the letter that was inside.
He sighed, "I'm sorry son." He said quietly.
Tim stirred moaning in his sleep.
Gibbs walked across the room and stroked his forehead. "It's ok, just sleep."
Tim turned over and slept.
Gibbs went downstairs and sat on the couch. He pulled the letter out and reread it.
"Evie, why didn't you tell me?" He said looking towards the heavens.
He lay back and closed his eyes, tomorrow was going to be a tough day.
Tim woke early his head pounding.
He reached over and grabbed the glass of water and the painkillers that were sitting on the side.
He groaned and sat up.
He looked around the unfamiliar room and realized he had no idea where he was. He had vague memories of going to work and Gibbs coming to his house. Then he remembered trying to wipe all traces of Phoenix.
He quickly sat up. "Oh God!" He groaned as he remembered going into work with Gibbs and admitting to being Phoenix. He realized he had no way out and he had to run.
Carefully putting his shoes on he headed down the stairs, he still had no idea where he was but he figured he could slip away before anyone found him.
He would miss his job but he would not go to prison for something he did not do and he did not kill that lieutenant.
He slowly crept towards the door, "Where you going Tim?" Gibbs said walking in with two cups of coffee. "Here."
"Boss…..I…." Tim stammered.
"Not gonna talk about it here. Just one thing I need to know, did you kill the lieutenant or have anything to do with the people who did?"
"No Boss, I haven't been Phoenix since MIT, I've only hacked for you since I joined NCIS." He said.
"Then we have to get you out of this mess." Gibbs said, "We have to do this for the record. But I promise we will get through this Tim."
Tim looked at Gibbs confused. He had expected his Boss to shun him, or at worst arrest him and fire him, but help him. That was totally out of character.
He took the coffee and sipped it gratefully.
Vance and Clayton Jarvis greeted Gibbs and Tim as they walked into the bullpen.
"Agent Gibbs, Agent McGee." Vance said.
"Director." Gibbs replied, warily.
"Why is Agent McGee walking around unescorted?" Jarvis asked.
"I don't think he is the guy you're looking for." Gibbs said, looking over as he saw Abby and Ducky coming out of the elevator.
"Its ok Boss, I'll take what's coming to me," Tim said not wanting to cause anyone any more trouble.
"NO! Tim you will not go to jail for this." Gibbs snapped. "I'll interview him, Tony and Ziva will find evidence to prove him innocent."
"You can't interview him, Jethro; it's a breech of protocol." Ducky said
Tim looked at the two friends standing toe to toe the air bristling between them.
Vance turned to Gibbs, "Why would it be a breech of protocol?"
"It wouldn't," Gibbs growled.
"He's my Boss Ducky, he just wants what's best for the team," Tim said
"You need to arrest him," Jarvis said annoyed that he was this close to Phoenix but he could not get him.
"Agent McGee you're coming with me," Jarvis said and grabbed onto his arm.
Tim winced as Jarvis grabbed him and tried to pull away. "Let go!" Tim yelled.
Gibbs stepped in front of Clayton and pushed him, "GET YOUR HANDS OFF MY SON!" He yelled and the bullpen became silent.
Tim backed off and looked at Gibbs in horror.
"No! Not you!" He shook his head as the others looked in shock.
"You want to explain Gibbs?" Vance asked.
"Not here. Leon can I have a few minutes?" Gibbs pleaded looking at Tim who was sat in Tony's chair staring at Gibbs in shock.
"Tim, please can we talk?" Gibbs asked.