Set before and after Good Cop, Bad Cop.
How did the virus get onto McGee's computer?
A McGee and DiNozzo-centric gen story.
Written: November 2009. Word count: 1,000.
Tony hurried into the squad room. It was horrendously early, but he needed to ensure he arrived before McGee. He pulled a CD and a piece of paper from his bag, looked around, crossed to McGee's desk and turned on his computer.
"Come on, come on," he muttered. Finally, after what seemed like hours, the four-legged Jethro appeared. Tony looked around him again, before opening the CD drive and putting the CD in. He looked at the paper and read the detailed instructions that began with: 'Turn on computer. Open CD drive. Put CD into drive. Close CD drive. Wait for white box to appear.'
"I've done that," he muttered, wondering why nothing had happened. He re-read the instructions and realized he hadn't actually closed the drive. Hastily he did, and the CD began to whir. "Come on, come on," he repeated, again glancing around him.
Finally, the white box appeared. Sparing time for one final glance around, he methodically began to follow the instructions that would put a virus onto McGee's computer.
It wouldn't be a destructive virus; he'd insisted on that. Nor would it spread to any other computer in the building. Tony enjoyed playing pranks, and this one in particular was going to be one of his best, but he wasn't stupid. He wasn't going to risk the possibility of instant dismissal, just to get one over on McGee.
For ten minutes he carefully and laboriously followed each instruction, until he reached the end of the page where it said: 'Open CD drive. Take CD out. Close CD drive. Turn off computer.' Then: 'DO NOT LEAVE CD OR INSTRUCTIONS ON DESK!!!!!' He frowned. "I'm not that stupid." He took the CD out and turned the computer off.
He moved the keyboard slightly, pushed McGee's chair under the desk, grabbed the CD and headed for his own desk. Ten seconds later he raced back across the office and grabbed the piece of paper.
He sank into his chair and leaned back. He was exhausted; he just hoped the prank was going to be worth it. Hearing the sound of the elevator doors opening, he turned his attention to his screen.
"Morning, Tony," McGee called.
"Hey, McGee." Tony looked up and watched McGee as he went to his desk, pulled his chair out and sat down. For a second Tony held his breath as he saw McGee frown at his keyboard, but then he just shrugged and turned his computer on. Tony began to breathe again.
Forcing himself not to stare at McGee, Tony turned his attention to his own screen and waited.
Suddenly he heard McGee exclaim, followed by the sound of several keys being struck at high speed. "Damn it!"
"Something the matter, McGee?"
McGee looked at him. "There's a virus on my computer," he said, his voice heavy with incredulity.
"That's not good, is it?"
McGee shook his head. "No. Nor should it be possible."
"Ah, come on, McGeek, even you can catch viruses."
McGee shot him a withering look. "But my computer shouldn't," he said. "It's protected."
"Has it done any damage?" Tony asked, mentally crossing his fingers. He didn't like the way McGee was frowning at the screen, nor the way his fingers were flying over the keyboard, nor the way he was muttering under his breath. McGee didn't answer; he just went on typing and muttering to himself.
Fleetingly wondering if he should resign before he was fired, Tony called across the room. "Hey, Probie. I asked you a question."
McGee paused and looked at him. "What?"
"I asked if it had done any damage."
McGee shook his head. "No. It's not that kind of virus. Not all viruses wipe your hard drive or corrupt your data. Some, like this, are just annoying."
Tony breathed a sigh of relief. "That's okay then," he said cheerfully.
McGee cast him another withering look. "No, Tony, it's not. One, I can't use the computer with it popping up a stupid message every time I type more than three letters and two, I can't find a way to get rid of it."
"Want me to have a look?"
"You? You 'I'm a Phys Ed jock'? You think you can remove a virus when I can't?"
McGee just looked at him for a moment, before shrugging and standing up. "Be my guest," he waved his hand at his computer.
Yes! Tony beamed. "How about a bet?"
"Yeah. If I get the virus off, you do all the paperwork for the week. If you get it off, I do."
McGee looked at him; then shrugged. "Why not? I could do with a week without paperwork."
"Hah! What makes you think you'll get it off"?
"What makes you think you will?"
EVENING: TWO DAYS LATER
Tony's doorbell rang. "McGee?"
McGee stared at him. "You fool."
"Here." McGee pushed a wad of bills into Tony's hand.
"What you paid Barry Harper to create the virus, tell you how to put it on my computer, and then get him to take it off again."
McGee nodded. "Sure. He left a message telling me to 'pretend' I couldn't remove it. He told me he'd split what you'd have to pay him to get it off with me."
"I -" Tony shut his mouth as McGee just stared at him. Then he shrugged. "Beer?"
"Yeah, thanks. But get your coat; we're going out. And you're buying."
Tony stared; then stuffed the money into his pocket, before grabbing his coat. "Why?"
"Because I don't mind a prank And I don't mind that you got payback. But I do mind extortion. Next time you want to do something like this, Tony, find someone who hasn't got a grudge against you. Angela," he added, as Tony stared at him. "The girl Barry planned to propose to until you . . ." He trailed off. "Now come on, you can buy me dinner as well. Okay?"
Tony stared, then smiled. "Yeah, Tim. It's okay."
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