Disclaimer: NCIS and its characters do not belong to me. This was written for my own amusement and that of anyone else who happens onto this. If you do, I hope you enjoy.

"So is it the black wire or the yellow one that's supposed to hook into the speakers? Because I swear before you came over to fix it the first time it was a red wire that-"

"It's the blue one, Tony." McGee rolled his eyes and willed a speedy end to the seemingly endless elevator ride. Checking his watch, he was dismayed to find that there were still ten more minutes before his work day would even officially begin. He sighed. "You only think it's the red wire because that's the one you broke the first time you made me come fix it."

"Oh, yeah…" Tony squinted toward the buzzing overhead lights in slow recognition. "Yeah, now that you mention it, that does seem right."

"Next time, you could just do what the rest of the world does and hire a tech guy."

"That's why I have you."

McGee shook his head as the lighted numbers ticked slowly upward toward their destination. Unfortunately, his partner wasn't done quite yet.

"But wasn't there a yellow wire that hooked to the -"

Cut off by the ding of the opening doors and the Probie's hasty retreat into the bullpen, Tony adjusted his bag over his shoulder and hustled along behind him with a few quick steps. Rounding the familiar cubicle wall, he came to an abrupt halt behind McGee's frozen form. "Kinda blocking traffic, there, McJam. What's the hold-"

His voice trailed off as he sidestepped the obstacle before him. Shoulder to shoulder with McGee, he followed his partner's gaze and observed for the first time the cause of his sudden, somewhat stunned stop.

Balanced on top of her desk in what Tony could only imagine was some sort of krav maga martial arts pose, phone crooked between ear and neck, stapler in one hand and service weapon in the other, was Ziva. A very tense, very angry, very potentially lethal Ziva. At the sight of her weapon, Tony's hand reached automatically for his own gun, but it stilled at his side when he realized the assassin's deadly aim was directed at...the floor.

Shooting a nervous glance toward McGee, Tony decided to use the most direct approach. "Ah, Ziva?" Tony eyed the Mossad agent as she perched ninja-like atop her desk. "I already know about the thing with the paperclips, but what exactly are you trying to kill with that stapler?"

"Shhh!" Tony and McGee each took a hurried step backward at her sudden wordless rebuke. Ziva briefly fixed both of them with the same death glare she'd been training on the carpet under Gibbs's desk, and for a moment Tony reconsidered the need for his own weapon. "You will scare it away!"

"Scare what away?" ventured a confused McGee.

"The mouse!" she hissed.

"Mouse?" McGee's eyebrow lifted in mild amusement as he and Tony shared an apprehensive look. Ziva continued to aim her office supplies with supreme focus and deadly precision. The Probie swallowed. "There's a mouse...under Gibbs's desk? Are you sure?"

Ziva dared a glance to roll her eyes in exasperation and attempted to adjust the phone without using her stapler-and-firearm-occupied hands. "I am sitting on top of my desk. Of course I am sure there is a mouse! It ran right under there!" She gestured with the stapler to the general area around Gibbs's chair.

"Brave mouse," muttered McGee. Off Tony's questioning look, he explained. "I'm just saying. Remember that one time when you crawled under the boss's desk to try to find out what he did with all those empty coffee cups? And he came back with another coffee in one hand and sat in his chair and -"

"We agreed we don't talk about that, McGee," Tony growled. He dropped his work bag at the side of his own desk and cautiously edged his way closer to the last known location of the wayward rodent.

McGee smirked. "I didn't have to do paperwork for the next month."

"I remember that," agreed Ziva, stretching one long leg behind her in an attempt to peer farther into the cubicle. A booted foot grazed his face as McGee leaned backward a bit to avoid the repercussions of her improvised contortionist act.

"Moving on..." Tony insisted, ducking under her leg and daring to creep a little closer. "What did it look like?" He half-crouched in the space between Ziva and his boss's desk, craning his neck downward for a better view.

Ziva huffed and attempted to readjust the phone still clenched between ear and shoulder without using her hands. "Little, gray brown, squirmy, thing!" she spit. "It was chewing on something and then it ran toward me."

"So, you climbed on your desk," clarified McGee, a soothing note creeping into his tone. "To get away from the mouse."

Tony grinned. "You gonna beat it with your purse next?"

"Do not patronize me! I do not carry a purse! I carry a bag, and it was a big mouse!"

"You just said it was little," pointed out McGee.

"Big for a mouse!" Adjusting her grip on the stapler, Ziva huffed again. "I do not like mice. Is that a problem for either of you?" She narrowed her eyes at the men before her.

Under her glare, they each retreated quickly.

"Nope," McGee shook his head as he edged past his crawling partner and office supply wielding coworker. He headed over to his own desk across the aisle. It was probably for the best if he just stayed out of the way on this one. "Not a problem at all." As he reached down to flick on his computer he offered one final thought on the situation at hand. "But you might want to pick up your...bag off the floor so your new friend doesn't go home with you at the end of the day."

Ziva's eyes widened, flickering to the bag that was most definitely not a purse resting on the floor behind her chair. She juggled phone, gun, and stapler unsuccessfully for a moment before hissing at Tony, who had disappeared fully underneath Gibbs's desk. "Hand me that bag!"

At the sound of her voice, the back side of Tony's head met the underside of his boss's desk with a surprisingly loud crack. "Ow!" He rubbed at the forming bump before glaring at the offending metal. "Taking after the person that sits in you," he muttered. Crawling out from under the desk, he squinted over at Ziva's bag. "Why me? You could come down, you know. I've seen you take out a whole bar of pissed off Navy Seals with your ninja skills. Pretty sure Mossad teaches some sort of super secret mouse neutralization techniques, too."

"My hands are full!"

"Well, put the gun down! What are you gonna do, shoot it?"

With a frustrated huff, Ziva holstered her weapon and shifted the stapler into her right hand.

"Better." Tony straightened from his crouch. "And who are you on the phone with, anyway?"


"Security?" Tony chuckled a disbelieving laugh. "You called security for a mouse?"

Across the aisle, McGee looked up from his computer. "I'm not sure mice are really their thing..."

"Well they keep putting me on hold anyway." She slammed the phone back into its cradle with more than the usual amount of force. Left with only the stapler, she surveyed her desk while considering the feasibility of using scissors for rodent related defense.

Tony eyed her with amusement. "Unless you're planning to staple it to death, you can probably put that down, too. I'm sure whatever you saw is long gone by now."

"You did not see the size of that...thing! And it ran right at me! I thought mice were supposed to be…mousy!" Tony remained unimpressed while she stared at him in frustration. "Just hand me my bag."

"Sure thing." Tony looped one finger under the strap and did as requested. Just as the bottom of the bag cleared the floor, he spotted movement.

Furry movement.

Aggressive movement.

Surprisingly large (for a mouse) movement.

Charging straight for him.

With a surprised yelp, Tony flung Ziva's bag high into the air and scrambled backwards. Frantically, he reached for the nearest available weapon, which happened to be a pile of neatly stacked, completely ignored files awaiting signatures on the corner of his boss's desk.

Snatching up a pair of scissors, Ziva resumed her ninja pose on top of her own desk, stapler aimed in perfect field-rated formation.

Brandishing his paperwork, Tony attempted a hasty retreat before his legs, unfortunately, tangled with a trash can. Sprawling helplessly into the aisle of the bullpen, Tony fell. Thirty-seven file folders of paperwork in triplicate and one bag that was decidedly not a purse fluttered to the ground around him.

And that was about the time that Gibbs walked in.