Off The Beaten Path

Fandom: NCIS, The Sentinel (TV), Stargate SG-1, JAG (TV 1995), Criminal Minds (US TV), Numb3rs (TV)

Pairing: Jim Ellison/Blair Sandburg, Blair Sandburg & Anthony DiNozzo, Jim Ellison & Anthony DiNozzo, other relationships to be added

Rated: Fiction M

Warnings: Alternate Universe – Sentinels and Guides Are Known, discussion of dying, Smart Anthony DiNozzo, Other Additional Tags to Be Added, Vance gets his head out of his ass where DiNozzo is concerned

Genres: Romance, Slash

Word Count: 5145

Summary: Tony is more than meets the eye. What else does he do other than work as a Federal Agent? Why are the North America Prime’s so interested in him?

Leon Vance looked down into the bullpen of NCIS Headquarters and smiled slightly. He loved being able to see teams hard at work. His eyes landed on the area that belonged to the Major Crimes Response Team (MCRT) and the smile slipped off his face. He knew that he had made a lot of mistakes with Anthony “Tony” DiNozzo and he wasn’t going to deny that even to himself, but he had fixed most of them. He had thought that he finally knew everything about the Senior Field Agent (SFA), but that was blown out of the water not even fifteen minutes ago. He was still reeling from the news he got told. “DiNozzo, I need you in my office, please. Shut down your computer because we have a meeting at the Pentagon with the President’s Chief of Staff in two hours.”

Tony quickly saved what he was working on and shut everything down. He knew what the meeting was about, but he was surprised that it was so soon. He ignored the looks from his teammates and headed up to the Director’s office. Once inside the office, he sat down and looked at Leon. “Sir?”

Leon took in a deep breath and let it out. “The book that you wrote has hit the Best Sellers Number one slot already, and the movie that was made of the book has already made several hundred million for the three foundations you wanted the profit to go to. I knew about the book even though I haven’t read it yet because the DoJ and DoD told me that nothing classified was in it. I’m guessing that there was a gag order on the movie until recently because earlier today was the first time I heard that you had anything to do with it. The funny thing is my wife and kids talked me into going to see the movie which we’ll be doing this coming weekend. Why didn’t you tell me about the movie?”

Tony sighed and ran a hand through his hair. “I got tired of the FBI taking all the credit for the cases several of our teams worked on with them. That doesn’t mean that I want to be in the spotlight myself, but our Agency and the men and women who work for it deserve some kind of recognition. The book and movie aren’t just by me but by two of my best friends as well.”

He chuckled. “One of my best friends is a Mathematician who is a Professor at CalSci and helps his brother who is an FBI Agent solve cases. My other best friend is a Profiler and works on the premiere BAU team. I floated my idea to the two of them and the next thing I know I’m NOT only publishing a Non-fiction book about NCIS and some other teams, but I’m helping to direct a movie to go along with the book. That book and movie are three years of hard work, Sir. Do you know how many meetings I had with the Secretary of Defense and even the President of the United States? This was my way of honoring Agent Kate Todd and other fallen Agents. I didn’t want their deaths to be in vain.”

Leon nodded thoughtfully. “You should know that Ziva’s time here is being looked into. I didn’t know until recently just how she came to be on the MCRT. Eli David is no longer the head of Mossad and is being questioned about his son and a lot of other things. Your book and movie have put NCIS in the spotlight on a positive note, and that is a good thing. I just hope that you aren’t planning on letting another agency seduce you away from NCIS.

He smiled and shook his head ruefully at his Agent. “I have made a lot of mistakes and missteps with you, Agent DiNozzo, but I’m working on correcting them. The reason we’re going to the Pentagon is that the gag order on all the news stations ends in about three hours and their lead story is your book and movie. SecDef and the President have both ordered that for the next several weeks you are to have bodyguards. We will find a way to make it work when you have to be out in the field and if we can’t you can teach at Quantico like you’ve asked on undercover and working as a team.”

Tony groaned. “Spencer and Charlie are going to lose it when they hear that I have bodyguards, and I know that they’ll hear about it. Those two worry too damn much about me.”

Leon laughed. “That’s what friends and family do, DiNozzo. I would also like you to think about taking a promotion. I need someone to tour our other offices and make sure that they’re running right because I’ve seen some things that worry me. If you agree to the promotion, you can still work with Gibbs and go out in the field, but you’d also have time away from the team and travel.”

Tony’s eyes widened in shock. “I will think about it, Director. Jenny offered me Rota, but I turned it down because I didn’t think Gibbs was well enough to come back when he did. I was afraid he didn’t have all his memories, and that turned out to be the truth. If I do take the promotion, Sir, I think you should look into bringing someone else onto the team that could act as SFA when I’m not here. As much as McGee thinks he should be SFA, he’s just not ready for it.”

Leon’s eyes grew hard. “My wife told me I needed to go back over thing from where you were team lead when Gibbs was in Mexico after she heard some things from a couple of agents. That is what I have been doing these last several weeks, and not just for the MCRT. I noticed that the writing style on the SFA reports didn’t change except for the equipment report and invoice the entire time you were team lead. I also found a file full of reprimands and other things for McGee & David and not just from you.

He took in a deep breath and let it out as he fought to get his anger under control. “The solve rate didn’t drop the entire time that Gibbs was gone, DiNozzo. I know that it didn’t drop because of you and ONLY you. Your hours during Gibbs hiatus skyrocketed while McGee’s and David’s dropped. Doctor Palmer told me how you did most of the work at crime scenes because McGee and David were late to the scenes or they refused to do what you ordered.

He shook his head in exasperation. “I don’t know what Shepard was thinking when she didn’t file the reprimands as she should have, but I’ve rectified that now. Both of them have reprimands in their files and McGee isn’t eligible for promotion for three years while David has had two years added to her probation time. They will be informed of this later this week.”

Tony’s mouth dropped open in surprise at Leon’s words. “I knew that Jenny never filed any of the reprimands that I wrote for McGee & David, but I didn’t know that anyone else had filed reprimands for them as well. I wasn’t expecting you to reprimand them, Sir. I would have settled for you just being in my corner and telling them that they have to listen to me. I also wasn’t expecting you to punish them in the way that you have. I know that I probably should have brought this up sooner, but I just finally made myself finish reading the book that McGee wrote. McGee used the members of the MCRT, Abby, Ducky, and Jimmy in his book even if he changed our names. He used the worse traits of us but the best traits of himself. He has implied in his book Deep Six that Jimmy defiles corpses. All it would take is a defense attorney figuring out that McGee wrote the book and based the characters off of us to use it as evidence in throwing doubt onto us and the criminal ends up going free.”

Leon swore. “I haven’t read McGee’s book yet because, in all honesty, I haven’t had the time. I will bring the book up while we’re at the Pentagon and see what SECNav and SecDef want to be done. I have no clue why Shepard gave the okay for the book, to begin with. She should have known that it would have to go through the DoD to make sure that nothing in the book could compromise your team or any cases that you guys have worked. Even after two years, I am still fixing the mess Shepard has made of things.

He shook his head and then smirked at Tony. “I do know about your second book and movie that will be out in a month from now. Just how have you been able to keep the fact that you’re a Sentinel Prime with Shaman level guide gifts from your team and almost everyone else, but those who need to know? Blair Sandburg is the complete opposite of you and is a Shaman Guide Prime with Sentinel Prime gifts. You are an established book author and a Federal Agent, DiNozzo, and once it is known about you being a Sentinel Prime with Shaman level Guide gifts, you are going to be even more swamped than you already are.”

Tony chuckled. “We think it is because we’ve both died and came back to life. Besides Blair’s books, there aren’t any other Sentinel and Guide books written by a Sentinel or Guide. I was asked to do a few from my perspective since as you said, I’m the opposite of Blair. I haven’t made up my mind yet, but I’ve also been asked to give some lectures on S & G’s at a series of seminars/conferences and a few interviews. As for the team not knowing that is because out in the field I can act as my own Guide or if I need one, then Jimmy Palmer helps to ground me without the others knowing. I never talk about the books I have published or plan to write because I don’t want to hear McGee tell me that I’m only doing it because I am jealous of the fact that he has written a couple of books.”

Leon nodded. “Things are going to change and some people are about to get a wake-up call that is long overdue. Where McGee failed to get approval for time off work for book signings and a book tour to promote his book, your time off will be approved with pay since the book is about NCIS. I hope that you have a tux because in two weeks there will be an event at the White House held in your honor, DiNozzo. For now, we need to leave and Balboa’s team will act as security for you until we get back here.”

Tony snorted. “Have you ever had Balboa or any of his team as your security detail, Director?”

Leon shook his head. “I have not. Is there something I should know, DiNozzo?”

Tony smirked as he stood up. “Nobody has ever asked me how I know Rick so well. Rick was assigned to a case I worked on in Philadelphia, and the killer turned his sight on me. Which meant I had a protective detail put on me because I refused to quit working the case. The perp not only killed two Navy Officers, but he killed three civilians and two police officers. Rick decided only his team was good enough to be my protective detail.

He chuckled as he remembered that specific time of his life. “Rick and his team are a bunch of mother hens, Sir. Not only did they make sure I was safe in the field, but they made sure I ate regularly and healthy. Hell, Rick even limited the amount of coffee I could have in a day!”

Leon laughed hard as he led the way out of his office and down to the bullpen. He ignored the looks he could feel he was getting and focused on Rick Balboa’s team. “Agent Balboa, you and your team are on security detail for myself and Agent DiNozzo. I will fill you in once we’re in the car and heading to the Pentagon.” He turned his head and looked at Gibbs and then Keith Jacobs. “Gibbs, your team is on cold cases for the next few days. There is no way I’m letting you out in the field without a qualified SFA to help run any case you may get. Jacobs, your team is taking over for the MCRT for the next couple of days.”

Gibbs frowned but nodded. He knew that something was up, even if he didn’t know what it was. “Yes, Director.”

Leon nodded sharply. “We will be having a long talk here soon, Gibbs. There are things you need to know and a list of things that are going to change with or without your approval.” He looked back at Tony. “Grab your stuff and bring it with you, DiNozzo. Depending on how long we’re at the Pentagon, we’ll go home from there. I know that Jackie wants me to bring you home for dinner this evening.”

Tony laughed. “Well, that explains the text message I got today from a number I didn’t recognize. I was wondering just shoe husband was taking me home for a home-cooked meal. I haven’t had the time to look into who the number belonged to yet since I was having to correct other people’s reports and send them back to said people for the third time.”

Vance scowled at that and glared at Ziva and McGee. “Fix your reports as you have been told to. If they are NOT fixed, I’ll write you up myself. DiNozzo has enough work to do without having to do yours on top of his own. You should know by now how case reports should be done. If you don’t know, then maybe you need a refresher course on it and everything else that a person is supposed to know how to do before they become a Federal Agent.

He shook his head in disgust and looked back at Gibbs with narrowed eyes. “I do think that you need to remind your agents of who is in charge, Gibbs, and I don’t mean just you. Agent DiNozzo is the Senior Field Agent of this team and for him to have to tell the Junior and Probationary Agents to do their reports more than once is ridiculous. If I find out he has to keep fixing their reports, they will be busted back to FLETC and there is no guarantee once they make it through that they will be placed back on the MCRT. Be at my house at seven for dinner, Gibbs. It looks like we will be having that talk we need to have sooner rather than later.”

Gibbs nodded because he knew that he couldn’t argue with what Vance had just said to him. He looked at Tony and knew that he was going to break one of his own rules. “I’m sorry, Tony. I should have stepped in a long time ago, but I let you continue handling it even as they kept on not listening to you. I WILL deal with it and with them. I hope that we will be able to talk tonight after I talk with Leon.”

Tony smiled slightly because he knew that Gibbs meant everything he had just told him. “I would like that, Gibbs. Before you head to the Director’s house, would you please swing by my place and grab me a change of clothes? I don’t want to be in a suit when we all sit down to eat one of Jackie’s home-cooked meals. Besides, I think I’d like to play some ball with Jared before dinner and I can’t do that in a suit.”

Gibbs smirked. “I still have a couple of changes of clothes for you at my house, so I’ll bring a set for you to change into along with a pair of tennis shoes you left at my place.” He shot a look at Balboa and once the other man nodded at him, he looked back at Tony with serious eyes. “Make sure that you listen to Balboa since he is yours and the Director’s security detail today. Got me?”

Tony blushed lightly but nodded. “I will make sure to listen to Rick and his team, Gibbs. I will also make sure that the Director listens to him as well.”

Leon bit his lip to keep from laughing because he knew that Gibbs and Tony weren’t trying to be funny. Yet the way they were with one another made him see things that he had missed up until just now. “I promise you, Gibbs, that your boy and I will do as we are told by Balboa. We will see you at my house for dinner. Since DiNozzo is planning on playing ball with my son, maybe you should show up about six instead of seven like I originally told you.

He nodded once more at Gibbs and then led DiNozzo, Balboa, and Balboa’s team out of the bullpen and into the elevator. He took in several deep breaths and let them out in an effort to cool his temper down. He wasn’t surprised that Balboa and one of his Junior Agents got into one SUV while Balboa’s SFA and other Junior Agent got into the second SUV. He got into the backseat of the SUV that Balboa was driving with Tony getting in beside him. He waited until they were on the road before he sighed in relief. “Rick, patch in your other two agents so you can all hear this at the same time.” While he waited on Balboa to do that, he turned his head and looked at Tony with a raised eyebrow. “Do you often have to correct and return reports back to McGee and David, DiNozzo? Just how often are you having to fix their work on top of doing your own work and even some of Gibbs’ work?”

Tony shrugged his shoulders. “I normally have to return their reports to them at least two times, but more often than not anywhere from three to five times, Sir. I was going to inform them today that from now on I would return their reports to them without the corrections that they need to make and if they send it back to me with nothing fixed that I would be writing them up. I am tired of holding their damn hands. I have too much work that I have to do and not just for our team, but for consultations that I do on top of my regular work.”

Balboa snorted. “Start sending their reports to me, Tony, as soon as you get them. Tyler and I will take turns reading over them and then send them back to you for you to forward them back to McGee and David. You need time to relax because you’ve been doing a lot more consults lately. Director, I have Tyler and Amanda patched in.”

Leon smiled slightly. “I want a copy of McGee’s and David’s reports the next case the MCRT has before any corrections are made to them.” He shook his head to clear it and then focus on what he needed Balboa and his team to know. “Your team will be providing security for the next couple of days to Agent DiNozzo, Balboa. The President and SecDef have ordered that DiNozzo has a security detail for the next couple of weeks at the very least if not the next couple of months.

His eyes connected with Balboa’s in the rearview mirror. “Balboa, your team will only be providing security until we can come up with a better way to provide a security detail. We may have to rotate teams on and off to have a security detail work since I don’t want to have to bench DiNozzo from the field.”

Balboa sucked in a breath. “Why does Tony need a security detail? Has there been another death threat made to him?”

Leon laughed. “No death threats that I am aware of, Balboa. However, a gag order that has been placed will be lifted shortly and the media will be after DiNozzo for interviews and stalking him more than likely. Even if he is at HQ, he is to have security. I honestly can’t say that he won’t have more security than just your team, Balboa.”

Balboa smirked. “Sentinel Prime Ellison and Guide Prime Sandburg will send at least one if not more Sentinel and Guide pairs to provide security, Sir. While it may not be advertised inside NCIS, those of us who are Sentinels or Guides know that Tony’s a Sentinel Prime even with not being bonded to a Guide. We chose to keep his secret because he has more enemies than a lot of us combined and we didn’t want it leaked.”

Leon nodded and shot a look at Tony. “You will be making a list of people who are a threat to you, DiNozzo. Regardless if you like it or not, you have just become the face of NCIS. It doesn’t help that in the next couple of months you’re about to also be the new face for all Sentinels and Guides, at least for a short while. So, you had better get used to having security at least for the next several weeks if not months.”

Tony groaned. “I did not think about that. I am glad that I moved into a bigger place recently, even if at the time I thought I was being foolish buying such a large house. Although, I do still need to register my new address with Human Resources. I am hoping that they will agree to not put my new address in the computer system. I would prefer McGee, David, and even Scuito not to have my new address. They are part of the reason I moved, to begin with.

He ran a hand down his face in frustration. “I got tired of them showing up at my condo and letting themselves in when I ignored the fact that they were at my door. I’m tired of them thinking that they have a right to know everything about my personal life and then when I don’t tell them what they want to know they decide to hack my bank info or anything else they can just to get the answers they feel that they deserve. I am not allowed to ask them about their personal lives but God forbid me for having one of my own and not sharing it with them.”

Leon stiffened in outrage. “Are you admitting, Agent DiNozzo, that Agents McGee and David along with Technician Scuito have been breaking into your condo? Why have you not reported them for breaking and entering? Just because you work with them does NOT give them the right to break into your place of residence, Agent DiNozzo! Balboa, I want an investigation into McGee, David, and Scuito and their actions towards and regarding Agent DiNozzo. They are NOT to get away with breaking into his house or hacking his bank info. DiNozzo, you will give Balboa any information that he requests of you in regards to the number of times they have broken into your home, hacked your banking information, or hacked any information that they shouldn’t have in regards to you. Am I understood?”

Tony looked at Leon in surprise but nodded nonetheless. “I understand, Sir. I will get copies of the recordings I have of them breaking into my condo. I will also give Rick authorization to talk to the bank manager of the bank I use so that he can get proof of McGee’s and Abby’s hacking. I am sick of them thinking that there aren’t consequences to their actions. If they want to be able to stay on the MCRT, they’re going to have to shape up, Director, and actually do the damn jobs they were hired to do. I am tired of acting like them doing shit like that isn’t wrong. I know that I need to register my new address, but honestly, I really don’t want to because I don’t trust that Abby or McGee won’t hack the server to get it once they figure out that I have moved.”

Leon took in a deep breath and let it out as he tried to calm down. He was more pissed than he had been in a long while. He shook his head and looked at Tony with narrowed eyes. “Don’t worry about giving your new address to HR, DiNozzo. Once we either go back to HQ today or tomorrow, I will put your new address in your Director’s Eyes Only file in my office. Nobody has the right to your address if you don’t want them to have it. I won’t tolerate my employees hacking into other employees’ electronic files. I don’t care what excuse those three come up with, they will be punished for accessing your file, especially since your clearance level is way above what their clearance level is. As it is, all three of them will be attending classes once I finalize my decision on which ones.”

Balboa snorted. “Have them attend a couple of the classes that DiNozzo teaches when he has the time, Sir. I know he’s scheduled next week to lecture at a profiling class with Dr. Spencer Reid and David Rossi. I am already registered to attend that lecture. If I remember correctly, he is also scheduled to do a lecture about Federal Agents and Local Law Enforcement cooperation and how to make it work to get the best outcome. I love attending his lectures and it doesn’t matter to me what he is lecturing on because he is that damn good.”

Tony blushed at the praise he got from Balboa. “It is all mostly common sense. If people would stop and use their brains, then a lot of stuff would be easier. I just make sure to use real-life scenarios in my lectures because people can relate to them more.”

Leon hummed as he thought about what both Balboa and Tony said. He had to admit that both of the younger men were right. “DiNozzo, get me a schedule of your lectures. I am going to make sure that you have those days off and I’m going to sign McGee, David, Scuito, Gibbs, Palmer, and Ducky up to attend them. If I just sign McGee, David, and Scuito up for the classes, they’ll get suspicious. I will also put your name down just to throw them off. One way or another, those three are going to shape up or ship out. I am finished letting them think they are better than everyone else. I will talk to the Secretary of Defense about a few ideas I have.”

Tony nodded. “I have a copy of the classes that I’m scheduled to lecture at for the next three months in my bag, Sir. I will give it to you once we get to your house this evening. I am scheduled over the weekend to talk at a Forensic profiling class at Georgetown. I am looking forward to that one because I find it interesting what kind of clues can be picked up on from evidence.”

Rick laughed. “I have talked to DiNozzo several times about evidence just to see what help he could provide to me in finding the suspect quicker. He was spot on each time, Director.”

Tony shrugged his shoulders. “It was easy enough to do, Balboa. Director, any clue what I should expect at this meeting?”

Leon shook his head. “Not really, DiNozzo. I know that the Secretary of Defense Jack O’Neill will be there and so will the President’s Chief of Staff, but I’m not sure who else will attend the meeting.”

Tony ran a hand through his hair. “More than likely, Jim and Blair will be at the meeting. I am only figuring that because Blair sent a text message to me this morning telling me, he would see me today. I also wouldn’t be surprised to see Fornell or some other FBI Agents there because if anything does happen, the FBI would be the one to work the case. David Rossi may be there because he has some experience in dealing with fans because of all the books he has written.”

Rick chuckled. “Actually, Tony, I wouldn’t be surprised if the whole premiere team for the BAU is at the meeting. They will be able to profile just how much danger you are likely to be in. Aaron Hotchner has the best profiling team of all the teams that work for the BAU. There isn’t a chance of him passing the assignment to one of the other BAU teams. I will warn you that when it comes to security, he is worse than I am. He won’t allow you to take chances, Tony. He’ll come up with a security detail plan and won’t allow for any deviance from the plan unless it is a for a damn good reason.”

Tony closed his eyes because he should have thought about that. “Which means I will more than likely be seeing Spencer sooner rather than later, as I planned. He is going to be glued to my side like there is no tomorrow. I wouldn’t be surprised if Charlie was here in the next day or two. It would depend on if he is working on an active case currently or not. Director, I would make sure that yard security knows to expect Latent Sentinel Agent Ian Edgerton sooner rather than later. If Charlie can’t get here, he will send Ian over to keep an eye on me. It will NOT matter to Charlie that I am an online Sentinel.”

Tyler laughed over the phone connection. “Professor Charlie Eppes can be like a dog with a bone. When it comes to the safety of those he cares about, he will leave no stone unturned. I heard that he knocked out a would-be kidnapper that was targeting his father. He also made sure that his brother stayed put after he was concussed during the takedown of a suspect. I don’t think that I would want to get on his bad side if even half the stories that I have heard about Charlie Eppes are true.”


Angel N Darkness

I started writing as a teenager and just never really quit. I love to read and write. I read and write for several different fandoms and that will show as I put more and more onto my website.

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