His Angel in Heaven
Disclaimer: As I’ve said before, not mine. Quote on headstone by Adeline Cullen Ray.
A/N Dedicated to all brothers and sisters around the world, tell them you love them.
Rating: T for some adult themes
Summary: He says he’s an only child and he is . . . but he wasn’t always.
“A sister is one who reaches for your hand and touches your heart.” ~ Author Unknown
When Anthony DiNozzo was four, his parents told him that he was getting a special present. Little Tony’s face lit up, thinking that he was getting the new toy he wanted. Unfortunately for Tony, this was a different kind of present.
“Anthony, dear,” his mother, Therese, began, “in eight months time you’re going to get a new little brother or sister.”
Tony looked at his parents curiously. “Why? Why am I getting a brother or sister?”
“So you’ll have someone to play with,” his father, Anthony Snr, replied. “Someone to share your toys with.”
“I don’t wanna share,” Tony whined. “I don’t need a lil’ brother or sister, I have you and mummy and Nita.”
“And now you’ll have a little sister or brother to play with as well.” Therese looked at her husband for support. “It’ll be fun.”
“I already have fun,” Tony answered. “I slided down the banister today and climbed my tree. That was fun.”
“Slid, I slid,” Anthony Snr corrected absentmindedly, “and how many times have I told you not to do that. It’s dangerous and it wrecks the banister.”
Tony ignored his father, now seeking answers. “Mummy, where do babies come from?”
Therese choked on her gin and tonic. “Err . . .” She was unable to answer. Anthony Snr wasn’t much help either.
“Well, you see, Anthony,” he began, going slightly red, “um . . .”
“They come from a special kind of cuddle that only mummies and daddies know how to do.” All three DiNozzos turned their heads at the voice of Tony’s nanny, Juanita.
Tony looked at his parents, waiting for conformation. His mother provided it. “Yes, dear. Juanita is right.”
“Did you and daddy do the cuddle when you had me?” Tony asked innocently.
“Yes, son,” his father answered. “Yes, we did.”
“I’m gonna do the cuddle lots and lots,” Tony declared, earning a laugh from Juanita, a horrified look from Therese and a ‘that’s by boy’ look from Anthony Snr.
Eight months later, Tony sat in the hospital waiting room next to Juanita. He had been unceremoniously woken up at two in the morning by an excited Juanita, saying that the baby was on the way.
“On its way to where?” Tony had asked, receiving a laugh from Juanita
Now he was in the waiting room with Juanita. He had been there five hours and was getting bored.
“When’s the baby coming?” Tony whined, wriggling in his seat. “I’m bored. I don’t wanna sit here any more. I wanna go home.”
“Pequeño muchacho, hush.” Juanita lent over and pulled the little boy on to her lap. “The bebé is coming, be patient.”
“It’s been two gazillion hours,” Tony complained, fingering Juanita necklace. “I want to go home. It’s so –”
Tony was cut of by his father entering the room. “It’s a girl. A little girl.”
“Did you hear that, querido?” Juanita exclaimed excitedly. “You have a little bebé hermana.”
“A little sister,” Tony whispered to himself. “I have a little baby sister.”
From that moment on, Tony loved his sister more than anything in the world.
“Hiya, baby,” Tony whispered, peering into the crib of his six month old sister. His parents were out; Juanita was downstairs on the phone, so Tony had decided to visit his sister.
“You look funny.” Tony flicked the mobile above the crib and was startled when the mobile made a noise. The peaceful baby started to cry. Little Tony looked horrified.
“Shhh, quiet, Holly,” Tony pleaded, watching the door. “Don’t cry. I’m sorry. I’m real sorry.” Tony reached out and touched Holly’s small head, making Holly cry louder.
“Please don’t cry,” Tony begged, starting to cry himself. “I don’t wanna get in trouble. I didn’t mean to. I’m sorry.”
Tony reached into the crib, trying to reach her pacifier which had fallen out of her mouth. Before he could get the pacifier, Holly grabbed onto one of Tony’s fingers and stopped crying. Holly brought Tony’s finger up her mouth and started to use it as a makeshift pacifier.
Instead of pulling away, Tony just watched. He watched his sister fall asleep, knowing that he would always be there for her when she needed him.
“Teddy,” Holly cried as she spied her older brother, seven year old Tony, walk through the front door. “Nita, down.”
Unable to pronounce Tony, Holly had taken to calling her older brother Teddy, much to the amusement of the adults.
“All right, my chica.” Juanita put three year old Holly down on the ground and she immediately toddled over to her brother.
“Teddy’s home,” Holly announced, grabbing Tony’s hand and pulling him towards Juanita. “Nita, Teddy’s home.”
“I can see that mi pequeña muñeca,” Juanita smiled, taking the backpack off Tony’s back. “How does some galletas sound? Holly and I have been busy.”
“We make cookies,” Holly said proudly. “Chockie chip, your favourite. We make them ‘specially for you. I helped good.” Holly grabbed Tony’s hand once again and pulled him towards their play room. Juanita followed, secretly smiling at the young brother and sister, hand in hand.
“Holly, be careful,” Ten year old Tony called to his sister. “Please don’t do anything stupid. Mum and dad will go off at me.”
It was the summer holidays so Tony and Holly were playing in the backyard. Holly, being a very adventurous six year old, was climbing the fir tree. This was a special activity shared only by them.
“Don’t be such a worry wart,” Holly yelled back, halfway up the tree. “I’m fine, Teddy. I learnt from the best.” Even though Holly could now pronounce Tony, she still called her beloved older brother Teddy.
Tony rolled his eyes and sighed. “You are gonna be the death of me, Hol.”
“Come up, Teddy,” Holly called, climbing up further. “You can see into Mrs Millson’s backyard and . . . eww . . . she’s in a bikini beside her pool.”
Tony’s eyes widened at the thought of sixty year old Mrs Millson in a bikini. “You serious?”
“Uh-huh,” Holly replied. “It’s totally icky. You can see all her old lady skin.”
“This I’ve gotta see.” Tony reached for a branch, hoisted himself up and continued climbing until he was on the branch next to Holly.
“See,” Holly indicated, pointing to the old lady. “Isn’t that gross?”
His eyes followed Holly’s finger. “Oh . . . eww, Hol. Bad picture.”
Holly laughed and opened her mouth to say something else when Mrs Millson noticed the two children in the tree.
“Oi, you young whippersnappers,” she yelled, jumping to her feet. “What do you think you are doing? Spying on a poor lady like myself. Anthony you should be ashamed, corrupting your little sister like this. Your parents are going to hear about this.”
“But . . .” Tony opened his mouth to explain that it was actually Holly’s idea, but was cut of by Holly pulling on his arm.
“Let’s go,” she giggled and started the descent down the tree, “before old Mrs Millson decides to fry us alive.”
Tony took one last look at Mrs Millson, before following his sister.
“Mrs Millson is so wrong,” Tony muttered to himself. “I’m not the one corrupting her, she’s corrupting me.”
“Watch your Hermana carefully,” Juanita told twelve year old Tony. “You know what she’s like, always funcionamiento off.”
“Sí,” Tony replied, taking the hand of his eight year old sister. “Behave, Hol.”
“Don’t I always?” Holly gave Tony and Juanita her ‘I’m totally innocent’ look.
“Just be cuidadoso,” Juanita said, kissing Tony and Holly on the cheeks. “Have fun my poco unos. Make sure you’re back by las dos.
“Por supuesto,” Tony assured Juanita. “Come on, Holly. Time for the park.”
Tony led Holly out the door, down the road and into the small park near their house.
“Stay where I can see you,” Tony ordered, before sitting on a bench in front the playground. “Don’t run off.”
“Okay, Teddy,” Holly answered, skipping off to the jungle gym.
Tony watched her climb onto the top before doing a back flip off the bar. “She’s gonna break her neck one of these days.”
“Then you’d be in trouble.” Tony spun his head around at the sound of a familiar voice.
“Hey, Pete,” Tony greeted his friend. “Whatcha doing here?”
“My ‘rents are fighting,” Peter Kilpatrick sighed, sitting next to Tony, “again. They never seem to stop. I was getting sick of it so I left.”
“Things are still bad, huh?” Tony questioned, looking sympathetically at Peter.
“Like you can’t imagine,” Peter replied. “I just wish they would get a divorce already. At least then I won’t have to listen to their bickering. The twins are totally taking this hard. Annabelle thinks it’s her fault and Rose has just shut down.”
“I’m sorry,” Tony said softly. “I can’t imagine what it’s like. I mean my parents aren’t around a lot, but at least they don’t fight. They just barely speak at all.”
“Hey, where’s your sister?” Peter asked. Tony’s eyes snapped to the playground which was empty.
“I’m sure she’s just hiding,” Tony said calmly. “Hol likes to joke like that.”
“I’m sure. I bet I know where she is.” Tony got up and walked over to the plastic tunnel, Holly’s favourite hiding place.
“You really need a new . . .” Tony trailed off when he saw the tunnel was empty. “Holly?”
Tony started to panic a little. “Holly. Come out, come out wherever you are.”
When Holly didn’t appear, Tony rushed back to Peter.
“She’s not here,” Tony said hurriedly. “She’s not on the playground.”
“I’m sure she’s around here somewhere,” Peter said. “You take that side, I’ll take this side. Kay?”
Tony nodded. “Holly Elle DiNozzo, if you don’t come out now I’m gonna tell mum and dad and Juanita and you’ll be in big trouble.” There was no reply.
Fifteen minutes later, Anthony DiNozzo ran hysterically into his million dollar house. “Nita, Nita. I can’t find Holly. She’s gone.”
The police came first, four cars with their lights flashing. People looked out their windows, wondering what was going on. Therese and Anthony Snr arrived two minutes later.
“Juanita,” Anthony Snr yelled as he raced through the front door. “What is going on? What’s happening?”
“Where’s my baby?” Therese cried, only seeing one of her children. “Where’s Holly?”
Juanita was crying. “Apesadumbrado, Mr and Mrs DiNozzo. She is el faltar . . . missing.”
“What do you mean missing?” Anthony Snr exploded. “Where the hell were you?”
“Anthony and Holly went to the parque,” Juanita replied, wiping away her tears. “Then Anthony comes back hysterical saying Holly is el faltar.”
“You lost my daughter, boy?” Tony’s father turned and faced his son, a deadly look on his face.
“I . . . didn’t . . . it . . . was.” Tony tried hard not to cry. “She . . . just . . . went.”
“Went. WENT?” Anthony Snr yelled at Tony. “Went where? For all we know she could be in the clutches of a paedophile. You lost her, if she doesn’t come home . . .”
“I’m sorry,” Tony sobbed, losing control of his emotions. “I’m really sorry, daddy. Please don’t hate me. I’m sorry. I’m so sorry. Daddy, please.”
“Don’t talk to me,” Anthony Snr said coldly. “Your sister is missing and it’s your fault.”
“Darling.” Therese put a hand on Anthony Senior’s shoulder. He shrugged it off.
“Don’t you say anything either,” he growled, walking to his study, most likely to drink himself stupid. “He’s your son.”
“He’s yours too,” Therese replied softly, tears in her eyes.
“That remains to be seen.” Anthony Snr slammed the door shut, leaving his heartbroken family behind.
Two weeks later, the police received a call from a pair of joggers who had seen the body of a young child in the bushes. It was a little girl, with a mop of brown curly hair. Therese and Anthony Snr were asked to identify the body. Anthony Snr refused to go, so Therese went with Juanita.
It was Holly.
Therese passed out. Juanita burst into tears and fell into the arms of the nearest police officer. The officers offered their condolences, knowing that nothing they said would make it okay.
The moment his mother and Juanita walked through the door, he knew she was dead. He took off. He ran past his father who was obviously drunk. He ran past his broken mother and his weeping nanny. He ran out the front door and down the road. He didn’t stop until; he didn’t really know where he ended up.
A broken-hearted Tony dropped to his knees, panting and sobbing at the same time. He curled himself into the foetal position and buried his face in his arms.
“I’m sorry, Holly,” he cried, his shoulders shaking. “I’m really, really sorry. It’s all my fault. I shouldn’t have . . . I’m sorry. Forgive me, Holly. I love you, please, I love you.”
The years passed and the DiNozzo family fell apart.
Anthony DiNozzo Snr disowned his twelve year old son, believing it was his fault that his precious daughter was gone. He continued to drink himself silly, taking his anger out on his remaining child.
Therese DiNozzo became addicted to sleeping pills and depression medication. One year after Holly’s death, she committed suicide. Anthony Snr once again blamed his remaining child.
Tony DiNozzo watched as his father married serval women after his mother died. All younger and prettier than the previous and always looking scarily like his little sister. Tony hated himself. He, like his father, blamed himself. It was his fault that Holly was dead.
That was why he joined the police force. He wanted to catch people like Robert Manning, Holly’s killer, and make sure they never hurt anyone ever again.
Tony’s family was broken, hell; he didn’t even have a family. His mother and sister were dead, his father did not acknowledge him. Juanita was still around, his father had fired her, but he hadn’t heard from her in many years.
He finally re-discovered family when he met Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs. Suddenly he had a father and a mother and a whole host of brothers and sisters.
He finally felt loved again.
As he traces the outline of the familiar words with his fingers,
Holly Elle DiNozzo
b. 24th December 1979 d. 8th July 1988
Cherished daughter and sister
‘Angels have no philosophy but love’
His mind wanders back and forth between memories of Holly . . . his angel in heaven.
“Angels are all around us, all the time, in the very air we breathe.” ~ Quoted in The Angels' Little Instruction Book by Eileen Elias Freeman, 1994
Translations: Spanish to English
(sorry if they’re not correct, I used an internet website)
Pequeño muchacho – little boy
Bebé – baby
Hermana - sister
Chica – girl
Mi pequeña muñeca – my little doll
Galletas – cookies
Funcionamiento - running
Sí – yes
Cuidadoso – careful
Poco unos – little ones
Las dos – two o’clock
Por supuesto – of course
Apesadumbrado - sorry
El faltar – missing
Parque – park