Prompt: Vislor Turlough walks into a bar and meets... Abby Sciuto
Fandoms: Doctor Who/NCIS
Word count: 1863
Rating/Warnings: PG for a murder investigation, no warnings apply.
Turlough was not having a good day. He didn't like being locked up in interrogation cells. He'd had enough of that during his travels with the Doctor - and even before that, during the war.
The problem with speaking English was that people were always pointing out that he spoke English and then expecting him to go to Earth and speak English. To be honest, it wasn't that he objected to speaking English, he just disliked Earth. And this particular trip had been worse than usual.
It had started when the tiny Trion embassy tucked up on the third floor of a row house with no lift in a less than desirable part of Washington D.C. didn't have his paperwork ready. He still hadn't sorted out the legalities of extraterrestrial embassies - this was a Class 5 planet, after all- but there were at least a dozen tiny ones on this street. The United States government seemed to recognise them in some fashion, even if they didn't openly acknowledge dealings with other planets and he knew of similar set-ups in other countries, so it should have been a common task and relatively easy for them to arrange. And yet, the embassy hadn't been able to come up with appropriate documentation and when he'd asked for an advance on his expense money, they'd managed $20, in notes and coins clearly scrounged from around the Embassy (and possibly from the pockets of employees). At that point, he'd thrown up his hands and asked for a phone.
Sarah Jane was more than happy to help. It took Turlough less than ten minutes to arrange for her to get papers, money and a mobile phone to him, and confirm once again his less than stellar opinion of WorldGov. At least when his own country asked his assistance on assignments like this, he could trust that everything would be in order.
He left the embassy with directions to the bar where Sarah Jane had said he'd meet his contact and $10 in his pocket, having left the other $10 behind to pay for the phone call. This was all going in his report, but he wasn't about to penalise the embassy because WorldGov couldn't be bothered to fund them properly. Just because it was a tiny embassy on a backwater planet didn't mean that they shouldn't have enough money to do their jobs.
"Vislor Turlough." The man closed the door with a bang, startling Turlough out of his reverie, and dropped the envelope Turlough had been carrying when he'd been taken into custody on the table. Turlough had heard the other agents call him Gibbs, and he was clearly the one in charge. If the United States had been a dictatorship, he might have worried about the lack of uniforms. He had yet to figure out what NCIS stood for, but he was almost certain it wasn't the secret police. Especially since they'd shown up in the bar in windbreakers with NCIS in bold letters blazoned across the back.
"Yes?" he tilted his head and looked at the other man inquisitively. He'd been in this sort of situation too often to be intimidated, and after the first few instances, he'd learnt to control his natural bent towards sarcasm until he'd sized up the situation.
The other man idly leafed through the contents of the manila envelope. "British passport which matches the ID in your wallet and $500 in cash. Odd way to carry your cash."
The man was fishing, but Turlough couldn't argue with that. "I went there to meet a friend of a friend. I'd run short of cash, so I asked her to wire me some money. Sarah arranged for her friend to give me a loan so I wouldn't have to wait around for the transfer to go through. She brought the cash over in the envelope, so it wouldn't raise eyebrows. I showed her my passport to verify my identity and when your people burst in, I must have stuck it in the envelope in my distraction." He'd taken the time to put the ID and debit card in his wallet and the mobile in his pocket, why hadn't he thought to put the passport away too?
"Reasonable," Gibbs replied, in a way that implied that it wasn't.
"Then I can go?" Turlough did not expect the answer to be yes, but it was always worth asking.
"You're currently a suspect in a murder investigation." Gibbs gave him a look that Turlough suspected would have unsettled another man.
Turlough hid his relief; he'd expected to be accused of dealing drugs. "Who am I supposed to have murdered?" It seemed like the most reasonable question. "And if I were going to murder someone, why would I have stayed in a bar where I couldn't blend into the woodwork if I tried?" He absently straightened his tie as he said that to emphasise just how out of place he'd been in a bar where almost everyone else was dressed in leather and black lace.
"His name was Jase McKenzie. He's a US Naval Officer and his body was found in the back alley shortly before 2pm." This was accompanied with another all-too-knowing look that made Turlough glad he wasn't responsible for the other man's death. "Perhaps you should tell me exactly what happened."
"I walked into the bar at about 12:45pm, judging by the clock on the back of the bar. When I walked in, there was a nasty argument going on at the bar. One of the guys was wearing black jeans and a black t-shirt and the other one looked just as out of place as I did in blue jeans and a stained blue button down shirt. The man in the blue shirt left almost immediately, pushing past me and nearly knocking me into the waitress. The bartender might not remember me, but she'd remember that. I was supposed to meet my friend's friend at 1pm, so I took a seat at one of the tables and ordered chips. I hadn't had lunch and I only had about $10 at the time. Sarah said said that her friend would find me, and she did, maybe ten minutes later."
Turlough paused, trying to think of how to describe the woman. "The woman I met was about my height, but she might have been wearing heels, I couldn't see. Puffy black skirt, white Oxford shirt with black lace trim, black on black tie - I couldn't tell what the design was in the dim light, black pigtails, black makeup. The only name I got was Abby."
To his astonishment, Gibbs stopped him there. "And you were with her the entire time?"
"It was her lunch hour, so she bought me lunch." The food had been surprisingly good, given the atmosphere. "She left in a rush, saying she had to get back to work."
"Thank you." Gibbs left the room without another word.
Turlough stared at the door, feeling a bit bewildered. He hoped he hadn't got Abby in any trouble. She didn't seem like the sort of person who'd murder anyone.
"Why aren't you behaving?" Abby gave the computer a love tap. "You should have an ID by now." Bad enough that she'd left the bar only to run into a Naval officer who'd died in her arms while she was attempting first aid, but now she wasn't even getting a match on the DNA Ducky had found under the dead man's fingernails. She turned her attention to trying to identify the shoe print that McGee had photographed. It wasn't often that murderers managed to attack their victims right near freshly poured concrete and while most of the marks were useless, this might yet yield some useful information.
"What have you got for me, Abby?"
If she hadn't been used to Gibbs coming up behind her like that, she would have hit him. Accepting the Caf-Pow he offered, she replied, "It's a man's work boot, size 8 ½. Common brand, but these are well worn and judging by the traces of salt and seaweed, he's got a job on a dock somewhere." She would have gone on, but Gibbs had that look on his face. "What? Never mind don't tell me. I haven't got the DNA yet, but I will-."
"I'm not worried about the DNA, Abby."
That wasn't right. He should be worried about the DNA. "I'm missing something else then. Some tiny clue that will lead us to the killer."
"You had lunch at the bar."
"They have the best wraps, Gibbs. I should take you there one day." Never mind that Gibbs would be horribly out of place there. "Or maybe you'd prefer a burger. The jalapeño poppers are to die for."
"I just need to know who you ate with, Abby, not the menu," he said reassuringly.
Oh! She should have thought of that. Of course, everyone in the bar would be a suspect. "Tall red-head. Male, so not your type," she added a little sadly. "Dressed in a suit that stuck out like a sore thumb. I met up with him as a favor to a friend, we had lunch, and then I left the bar and ran right into Lieutenant McKenzie and tried to give him first aid. I spotted his dogtags and called you." She hoped Turlough's ID would pass muster.
"And McKenzie was dressed in black? Because it sounds like your friend saw the fight that precipitated the murder."
"That's good then, Gibbs." She reached up and kissed him on the cheek. "He can give us a description and then we can put this guy away." She might have been taking this case a little too personally, but having a Navy Officer die in her arms did that to her.
Turlough had been wondering if he could ask for a book when one of the agents walked in and asked him to come to the morgue to identify the body. Not the way he'd planned to spend the day, but he supposed it was inevitable. Lieutenant McKenzie turned out to be the man who'd stayed in the bar after the fight. Apparently his sparring partner had hovered outside the bar until he'd left and then attacked him. After that, it was simple. He provided Abby with a sketch of the other man and was told not to leave town for a few days. Not that he'd been planning to.
It didn't even take that long. Abby called his mobile that very night to tell him they'd caught the murderer. Turlough took the opportunity to apologise to her in case he'd got her into trouble with her boss, but she said not to worry about it. They chatted for a few minutes, and then he returned to his report on his trip thus far. He'd omit the murder investigation; it was hardly relevant to his mission here and now that it was safely concluded, he could put it out of his mind and hope the rest of his trip would go more smoothly.
And people wondered why he hated coming back to Earth.