NCIS s16e17 Episode Script

Silent Service

1 BARKLEY: Seven minutes.
Is this right? SAILOR: Aye, sir.
Seven minutes.
- Unacceptable.
This is a military ship, not a homecoming dance.
Captain.
Report.
The staff is locked and we're holding steady.
When do the SEALs get back from their dive? They still have another 15 minutes, Captain.
This is Weapons Officer Hardy.
Go.
BARKLEY: As soon as they return, I want to run another missile drill test.
It shouldn't take seven minutes to HARDY: Captain.
Got a problem at the escape trunk.
XO, you have the Conn.
Come on, Mike, stay with me.
What the hell happened out there? I don't know.
Doctor's on his way.
Sit-rep.
It was a routine dive, sir.
Doesn't look routine.
I went out first.
Got about 20 yards and looked back.
White was just floating there.
By the time I got back to him, he was Sir He's gone.
NCIS 16x17 Silent Service MAN (over radio): USS Memphis, this is Seahawk One.
We are coming on your position.
(grunts) Ah, they really need to make these doorways bigger.
Hey, uh, where's Gibbs? Talking to the CO.
Now it's time for you to talk to me.
Who do we have here? Well, Petty Officer Robert White.
And I hope he's a fast talker.
Yeah, me, too.
I have a whole list full of events planned for Dr.
Mallard's last day.
If you want to see him before he leaves, let's make this quick, okay? Hey.
You doing okay? Yeah.
Just not a big fan of being underwater these days, you know, so Oh, that's right.
And now you're basically trapped on a big, giant underwater coffin.
Not helping.
Look, we are gonna be fine, all right? This baby is indestructible.
And if anything were to go wrong with the boat, Bishop, good news, we'd be dead before you know it.
Okay.
So it's times like these I'm really gonna miss Ducky.
Yeah, tell me about it.
(sighs) Rather you tell me about our petty officer.
Oh.
Uh, okay.
Finished BUDS six months ago.
His SEAL team was hitching a ride for a training exercise and this was his first trip out on a Virginia-class.
Sadly, his last.
Cause of death? The frothing around the nose and the cyanosis suggest drowning.
Along with the ocean he was dragged out of.
But I'll have to take him back for an autopsy just to confirm.
GIBBS: Okay, Palmer, get the body back to NCIS.
Bishop Go with him? Interviews.
(groans) Okay.
How does a U.
S.
Navy SEAL drown during a routine dive? That's a good question.
All right, Jimmy's on his way back with the body.
Gibbs and Bishop are staying on the sub.
Man, Bishop ain't gonna like that.
Yeah.
Nor do I.
It means I won't be able to say good-bye to them.
McGee, gingerbread latte, extra whipped cream.
Enjoy.
Thank ya.
Does Gibbs suspect foul play? Does he ever not? Ah, good point.
TORRES: Well, at least you'll be able to spend a few more hours with Jimmy before you leave.
Ah, we're really gonna miss you around here, Duck.
I still can't believe it's your last day.
I prefer to think of it as the first day of the rest of my life.
What happens on the second day? Stay tuned.
(chuckles) Well, I know exactly what I'm gonna do when I retire.
Buy a beach bar.
Surf all day, and margaritas till sun-up.
Oh, man, I can definitely get behind that.
You surf, Nick? I was talking about the margaritas.
Ah.
But, honestly, I, uh, I've never really thought about retirement.
Well, that definitely sounds like a surfer's mentality.
Nick, you gotta get on that.
I mean, I've been saving for my retirement since I was 14 years old.
Oh, yeah, but you also have issues.
SLOANE: And that's my cue to leave.
I was never a big fan of The Odd Couple.
Hey, you do know that you need money to live on once you stop working, right? Look, man, I-I've been saving, okay? But I-I'm saving like a normal person.
Like, a little bit here and there, you know? I haven't been saving since I was potty-trained.
But just out of curiosity, what-what do you guys think? How how much you think is, uh, is enough? Well, it depends on your plans.
I mean, maybe you want to travel, or, uh, do a vacation home.
Either way, you're gonna need a lot of money.
Do you think Do you think this is enough? Oh, dear.
That bad? How have you saved that much cash? Or perhaps that good? Wha-- I don't have anywhere near that amount.
Well, uh, while I wait for Dr.
Palmer's return, I think I'll go see Kasie.
(chuckles) Okay.
Y-You got to tell me.
Where'd you get all that dough? Man, I was undercover for a bunch of years.
I never had to spend my own money.
So I just kept stacking it up, baby.
Oh.
So you're saying I'm good? Yeah, you're good.
Oh, yeah.
The question is, am I? It was a by-the-book dive.
This shouldn't have happened.
How well did you know Petty Officer White? He'd only been on board a few days.
But I could already tell he was a bit cocky.
You know how SEALs are.
Cocky enough to make someone want to kill him? You NCIS guys always go straight to that.
Well, it's kind of our job.
You just said it shouldn't have happened.
Except it did, and we're not ready to rule anything out.
All I meant was, White was a highly trained diver, so something must've gone wrong.
Like maybe with the equipment.
Okay.
Aside from White, who had access to his dive gear? His dive partner.
And me.
So, you and White get along? You guys are barking up the wrong tree, okay? I don't have any beef with (loud alarm blares) What's that? It's the dive alarm.
MAN (over intercom): Dive! Dive! Uh, what? They're not supposed to dive with us on board.
Not unless it's an emergency, no.
Oh.
Mm.
Okay.
That's just great.
MAN (over intercom): Alert! Alert! Opening all vents.
Well, whatever it is, we're going down fast.
Gibbs - Bishop - Huh? - It's fine.
- Mm-Kay.
Everything's gonna be fine.
Chief of the Watch on the 1MC, alert bays three and six to stand by for further orders.
Aye, sir.
Captain.
I thought NCIS left with the body.
No.
We're still here.
Well, you two are gonna have to sit tight, then.
What's going on? We've been given emergency dive orders, told to wait for further instruction.
We need to get word to NCIS.
(chuckles) That's a hard no.
Orders include radio silence.
Uh, but Until we hear otherwise, nothing is going out.
BARKLEY: Well, don't worry.
We'll get you two off the Memphis and back in your cubicles as soon as we can.
We're not getting off.
We have an investigation to finish.
The reason you haven't finished it already? Captain, you have an unexplained death on your boat.
I'd like to think you'd be a little more curious about what happened.
You got a lot of stones to stand on my bridge and insinuate I don't care about what happens to my crew.
BISHOP: All due respect, a Navy SEAL died on a routine training exercise and no one can explain why.
We'll have full access to your crew, and we'll start with Petty Officer White's diving buddy.
Agent Gibbs, I understand that you have a job to do.
We do.
And the full authority to do it.
But let me make myself perfectly clear.
If either of you interfere with the operations of this boat, I will fire you out of that torpedo tube myself.
(chuckles softly) I wish you luck with that.
Sorry I'm so busy, Dr.
Mallard.
The timing on this couldn't have been worse.
Dr.
Palmer I know, I know I said I'd stop apologizing.
Well, then, stop.
I-It's just that I had a-a speech planned, and there was a-a slide show in Kasie's lab-- oh, and cookies.
Yeah, well, this three-page letter and all these parting gifts, it's more than sufficient.
And I'm leaving NCIS, not the planet.
Freaking out here, okay? Tim, you're gonna be fine, man.
Yeah, not compared to you.
You got no kids and a small fortune.
I've got two kids and a wife.
I'm gonna be working for the rest of my life.
Well, the good news is, you love your job, right? I've always loved mine.
Well, no offense, Ducky, but if I'm still working (laughs): when I'm your age Uh McGEE: I'm not gonna finish that sentence.
Ducky, you look fantastic.
Good move.
All right, well, since the rest of us haven't retired yet, can we get back to the dead guy? Now, that's your cue, Dr.
Palmer.
I hear the, uh Cyber Division barbershop quartet is bidding me a farewell with a rendition of "Ev'ry Time We Say Goodbye.
" Damn, he loves Cole Porter, and I just saw a box set on sale.
Focus.
Dead guy.
Cause of death.
Right.
O-Our petty officer drowned.
No doubt about it.
Aside from the water in the lungs, there's also signs of subcutaneous emphysema.
That's what happens when the air gets trapped in the tissue here.
Any idea how that happened? That is the million-dollar question.
I have a buck 50 answer.
You two.
Answer your phones much? Oh, I must have missed it.
Sorry about that.
Gibbs always answers.
If that technology hater can manage to What's up? One ring.
Just saying.
I was examining the counterlung on Petty Officer White's scuba gear.
That's the oxygen tank, for the aqua layperson.
It was clearly tampered with.
Any chance that the petty officer might done it himself? Like, uh, accidentally? Not a chance.
The diaphragm on the gas-check valve-- a buck 50 part, by the way-- was deliberately pulled out.
Well, that makes this a (English accent): Murder, my dear Palmer.
GIBBS: You looking for something, Petty Officer Harper? White's drowning had me spooked, so I decided to take a second look at the entire SEAL team's equipment.
Hmm.
What did you find? Everyone's equipment was in perfect working order.
BISHOP: No.
Not everyone's.
I just tried our sat phone to see if I could get a signal.
No, no.
We're too deep.
Yeah.
But Kasie sent a message, uh, just before we lost contact.
White's overpressure valve was tampered with.
- His death wasn't an accident.
HARPER: Tampered with? By who? You tell us.
BISHOP: Besides White, you and Master Diver Ross were the only one who had access to the equipment locker.
HARPER: Not true.
Privacy's out the window once we deploy.
Almost anyone could have gotten to our gear.
Well, not everyone was cited for disorderly conduct.
GIBBS: You had a fight with White about a week ago? Yeah.
And the week before that, and the week before that.
- You're not helping your case here.
- He's got a mouth.
I'm a hothead.
We fight and then make up and move on.
You've got brothers? It's like that.
So, what was the fight about? MAN (over intercom): All hands, report to stations for missile readiness test.
(alert chiming) I got to go.
Yeah.
We'll walk with you.
BISHOP: Petty Officer Harper.
You can tell us now, here, or in the brig.
White thought that Tobey Maguire's Spider-Man could beat up Andrew Garfield's Spider-Man.
And I didn't.
(scoffs) Wow.
Important stuff.
It passes the time.
You know, White actually told me yesterday he wanted to show me something.
I didn't think nothing much of it, but now Yeah? What? No clue.
But he wanted to meet in his quarters, so I'm guessing it's got to still be there.
MAN (over intercom): All hands report to stations for missile readiness test.
I really got to go.
They're both wrong.
Tom Holland's Spider-Man wins, hands down.
"And no amount of gratitude could ever repay" No.
"convey our appreciation "to Dr.
Mallard "for his decades of service.
" So instead, we are going to give him the lamest speech ever written.
Well, that beats a gold watch.
Agent Torres, Agent McGee.
- How can I help you? McGEE: Well, Director, we're not sure if you heard about Petty Officer White.
I did.
I presume you told Gibbs he's got a murder on his hands.
McGEE: Well, that's why we're here.
We tried calling him, but no one's answering the sat phone.
And you need my authorization to contact the submarine directly.
Sir, already tried that.
Also not answering.
We think they may have already dove.
No, that can't be.
NCIS is required to be updated on all dive orders while our agents are on board.
I ASSISTANT (over intercom): Director? - Yeah? The Pentagon is on at MTAC.
They say it's urgent.
Undersecretary Leo.
How can I help you? I understand some of your agents were investigating a death on the USS Memphis.
Which has since been upgraded to murder, but yes.
Have you heard from those agents recently? I'm told we just lost contact, actually.
What's going on? A total disaster, that's what.
, Jennifer, where are my agents? I wish I could tell you that, Leon.
Five hours ago, the USS Memphis dove to stealth depths and has been radio silent ever since.
Under whose orders? Not ours.
I want to be clear here.
Are you telling me the United States government lost contact with a nuclear submarine with two of my agents on board? Director, that is exactly what I'm telling you.
The USS Memphis was last seen right here.
The Navy's conducting a search of the area, but that sub could be almost anywhere by now.
We have no idea who's feeding them orders or what those orders are.
SLOANE: So, what can we do? McGEE: Complete the investigation into Petty Officer White's death.
VANCE: Right.
It's not lost on anyone at DoD that White's murder coincided with the disappearance !of the Memphis.
You think both are connected? Well, you need to operate on that assumption.
Solving Petty Officer White's murder could help determine what's going on with the Memphis.
- Right.
TORRES: I thought motor pool was gonna take you out on a karaoke night.
Until Jethro and Eleanor are safe, Gloria Gaynor can wait.
- I will survive.
VANCE: Okay, then.
Agent McGee, I believe you are the senior field agent.
Please.
Okay.
Sloane, Ducky, I need you to run profiles on the entire crew of the Memphis.
- On it.
- On it.
- Torres, Petty Officer White.
Bank statements, cell records, credit cards.
Got it.
Bring it, McGee.
I'm here to help.
Director, you think you could twist some arms at the Pentagon and get Kasie the telemetry on the Memphis before it went missing? Twisting arms is my specialty.
I'm on it.
BISHOP: Books, magazine, toothbrush.
I mean, if White was hiding something here, it's gone.
Keep looking.
Whoa.
Uh, Gibbs? What was that? Just an underwater current.
I'm sure everything is fine.
No, Gibbs, everything is not fine.
We-we are stuck below the water for who knows how long on a ship that refuses to let us speak to the surface.
Bishop, I'm sure it's just a routine mission, okay? Oh, my gosh.
You do not believe that for a second.
Come on.
The death, the dive order, and now a murder? Don't tell me you don't think something is up.
You just don't want me to panic.
How am I doing? Well, I'm starting to panic.
What? That book.
Cover's all worn, but the pages look brand-new.
That's not Moby-Dick.
It's an electrical manual for the galley.
What was White doing with that? BOTH: Not the question.
Why was he hiding it? Well, still no word from Gibbs or Bishop.
Torres say you've got something, and I hope it's more than a tweaked neck.
Yeah, Nick tells no lies.
Courtesy of some arm-twisting by Director Vance, the Pentagon was kind enough to give me all the telemetry info they had on the Memphis since it left port.
You found something? Maybe.
But it's kind of technical.
See this? That's part of an E.
L.
F.
transmission, sent just after Gibbs and Bishop boarded the sub.
E.
L.
F.
stands for Extremely Low Frequency.
Right.
Right.
And to limit transmission errors, it uses something called Reed-Solomon error correction.
Which uses Linear block-code to maximize that correction.
Oh, I like briefing just you.
Yeah, but it looks like that block is repeating itself too many times.
See, if you weren't paying attention, you'd think it was just noise in the sequence.
But I think it's some kind of coded message.
What's it say? No idea.
Who's it to? Not exactly sure of that either, but I think this section is a targeted IP address.
And if I'm not just seeing what I want to see, it belongs to a very non-military storage facility in rural West Virginia.
A military sub would not be sending messages to a non-military site.
Oh.
So maybe I'm barking up the wrong tree You got an address? Thank you.
Tell Willie-Dee I said "What's up!?" I'm sorry, Agent Gibbs, I can't allow you to break radio silence.
- We need to talk to our people.
- And you will.
Just give any message you have to Weapons Officer Hardy.
He'll make sure it gets sent the moment I give the stand-down order.
Moment's now.
You had a murder on your boat.
Which means you now have a killer on your boat, too.
And we've ordered COB Shaw to be at your disposal.
That's not good enough.
I don't have time for this! This is a ship of war, and we have our orders.
New orders, in fact, that just came in.
And I need to go carry them out.
Don't take it personally.
He does understand that everyone on board is now a suspect, right? Of course he understands.
He's not acting like it.
He's just on edge with the new orders.
We all are.
What are the new orders? That's classified.
Navy regulations grant us access in these circumstances, so Well, actually, that was a matter of some debate on the bridge.
What are the orders? Unless you want to add obstruction of justice charges to this investigation.
The Pentagon told us to prep all of our defenses.
That's all I'm willing to say.
Now if you'll excuse me Prep all of our defenses? What does that mean? It means this submarine is preparing for war.
With who? (alert chimes) MAN (over intercom): Attention.
Alert one, alert one! Man battle stations for weapons systems readiness test.
War? What in the hell is going on up there that would involve a nuclear submarine? - Hey.
Hey, hey, hey.
You know what? I-I'm not really a politico kind of guy.
(sighs) It could be anything.
Yeah, or it could be nothing.
Never stopped anybody before.
Gibbs, uh, something about this just Feels wrong.
All wrong.
In a Rule 39 kind of way.
"No such thing as coincidence.
" (sighs) Yeah, it should probably be higher up the list.
This all started after White's murder.
The radio silence, the new order.
And was it me or did the Captain seem just like No.
a little too unconcerned about a murder on his boat? No.
No, it's not you.
Maybe he didn't believe us? Why didn't you tell him about the book White was hiding? Maybe he would've taken us a little bit more seriously.
It's like you said, everybody's a suspect.
What's our next move? Same as before.
Petty Officer White.
Okay.
If the murder was related to the new order, then we need to connect the dots.
Where do we start? Are you hungry? TORRES: Kasie, wait, slow down.
Okay Okay.
Got it.
I'll let him know.
She find something? Still no word from the sub.
But she said she was able to decode a little more of its, um E.
L.
F.
telemetry transmission? Yeah.
That.
And then she said she was able to pull the sub-note part? Uh The subnet port? See, that's why you should have taken the call.
Just skip to the end.
TORRES: Okay, the transmission was sent to a router in Unit 356 at the storage place.
See? Was that so hard? You know, when you look this good, yes, yes, it is.
And McGee, I'm a little distracted right now.
I just hope they're okay.
Bishop didn't really want to go down to the sub in the first place.
She's with Gibbs.
She'll be fine.
Come on.
You don't know that.
Well, we can't think about it.
We got to got to focus on the case, you know? But, hey, think about that giant nest egg you got waiting for you.
(laughing): Come on, man.
I was just messing with you.
Sorry about that.
It's fine.
Look, I chose a family.
They're expensive.
But you, on the other hand, have the freedom to do whatever you want with your money.
Actually, not really, man.
Maybe I want to spend it on a family one day.
Yo, heads up.
What is that address we're looking for again? Uh, it's the one with the fire trucks in front of it? And a fire chief who looks a little too much like Mr.
Rogers.
Am I right? Sorry, boys.
Gonna have to ask you to turn around.
Got a fire in one of those storage units.
NCIS, Special Agents McGee and Torres.
We actually need to get into one of those storage units.
Oh.
Well, I hope it's not Unit 356.
Looks like the fire was deliberate.
Of course it was.
BISHOP: You recognize that book? MAN: Yeah, I know what this is.
It's the manual for the electrical subsystems in our galley.
We found this in Petty Officer White's bunk.
Any idea how it got there? Let's try this again.
Is having this manual part of White's duties? - No.
- Where is it normally kept? - Here.
- In your galley? You see where we're going with this? Look, I don't know anything, okay? And I got a lot of mouths to feed.
You do know that we're investigating a murder, right? Which means we're looking for a murderer.
Well, wait a minute.
Not even a second.
(sighs) Okay, look, White came to me and asked if he could have the manual for the electrical subsystems.
So I gave it to him, okay? - He's a diver, not an electrician.
- You didn't think the request was strange? It was strange as hell! I have no idea why he wanted it.
But I'm just the cook.
Wasn't my place to ask questions.
So, why couldn't you just have told us that before? I was ordered not to.
By who? After White took the manual, I reported it to the COB.
She told me not to tell anyone.
When was this? Day before White was killed.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I got to get back to work.
Well, I think it's time we talk to the chief of the boat.
Jack.
Mm.
How are the, uh, crew profiles coming along? Mm, almost done.
But Ducky and I weren't able to find anything amiss.
The Navy doesn't let just anyone serve on a nuclear sub.
They have the most stringent vetting process on the entire planet.
And we're grateful for that.
- Mm.
- I got something else here for you.
Walter Miller.
Who is he? He's the owner of the storage unit that burnt to the ground.
He was a genius computer science professor.
Two years ago, he cancelled his credit cards, sold his home, and he went full hermit.
Used to go to work in a suit, and now he's living off the grid and receiving coded messages from a nuclear sub.
Mm-hmm, and I heard you recovered a hard drive, too, right? What's left of it.
Kasie's working on it.
Wait.
What is this? It's from Miller's blog.
Homeland just sent it over.
Wow.
Yikes.
Yowzer.
Listen to this.
"The United States has been far too lenient "since the end of the Cold War.
"We need to launch a preemptive war against our enemies before it's too late"? So, yeah, I-I'd say Yowzer.
This guy should not be talking to anyone on a nuclear sub.
We need to find him, like, now.
Agent Gibbs.
Excuse me.
I'm expected on the bridge.
It can wait.
Not a good time.
No.
No, it's not.
This way.
MAN (over intercom): Alert one.
Alert one.
Rig for silent running.
Hey.
Out.
(alert chiming) Where'd you find that? In a dead man's chest.
Next question.
Why'd you order your cook to keep quiet about it? It's a personal matter.
Your CO said we would have your full cooperation.
Why was White asking about this book? I'm the one who told him to get it, okay? - Why? MAN (over intercom): Alert one.
Alert one.
Man battle stations.
Ready torpedoes.
- This really isn't a good time.
Then stop wasting it.
Two days ago, I walked in on Weapons Officer Hardy in the kitchen, fiddling with an electrical sub-panel.
He said he was doing a routine check.
Torpedo guys don't fiddle with electrical sub-panels.
Not normally, no.
So I wanted to know what was behind that panel.
But I didn't want to draw too much attention to it, so So you asked White to get the book for you.
A day later, he's dead.
You didn't think that we should know about all this? Quite frankly, no.
I've known you for 15 minutes.
I've known Justin Hardy for 15 years.
He's got nothing to do with Petty Officer White's death.
- That's not your call.
- We need to speak to your captain.
No, you don't! I don't know what happened to White, but whatever it was, Hardy's not involved.
I've gone to war with him.
I was there when his entire family was killed in a car crash.
We have been to hell and back, and I've never once questioned his dedication to the uniform.
Now, if you'll excuse me, this boat is about to go into battle, I'm needed on the bridge, and we simply cannot afford your distractions! Orlando? These two are to be confined until further notice.
LEO: Have you made any headway finding this Walter Miller? We have teams out looking for him as we speak.
I've been reading an old blog post where he talks extensively about the hills of northern Virginia.
My hunch is he's there.
I don't need to tell you that time is of the essence.
Have there been any new developments? About 20 minutes ago, the USS Memphis pinged one of our deep sea microphones.
Fantastic.
It's a nightmare.
The Memphis was headed in the direction of the Russian fleet in the North Sea.
That's great.
And she's still ignoring orders to surface.
We think we know why.
She's not getting them! VANCE: Undersecretary Leo, this is Kasie Hines, our forensic scientist.
Can you explain that? Uh, I was able to partially reconstruct a burned hard drive that belonged to Walter Miller.
We found the blueprints for a device we believe was designed to block the Navy's transmissions.
And allow Miller to feed the Memphis his own orders.
And he was somehow able to install this device on our sub? Yes, that's our working theory.
That's almost impossible.
He doesn't have that kind of access.
Unless he had help.
Can you bypass this device? No.
Our only chance is to find Miller's transmitter and shut it down.
Director Vance, my people will continue to do everything we can to make contact with the USS Memphis, but you need to find Walter Miller before that boat gets within firing range of the Russian fleet.
They have done nothing to provoke us and won't take kindly to a provocation on our side.
We'll find him.
LEO: And may God help you.
Because if you don't, we will have no choice but to sink the USS Memphis.
(banging on door) Let us out! - He's not gonna open it.
- Ugh! - He's got his orders.
- (groans) It's locked up pretty tight.
Hey, any way to open this from the inside? Yeah.
Blowtorch.
Yeah, well, I should've brought mine from home.
What are you looking for? A blowtorch.
(scoffs) So, Gibbs, the COB said that we were getting ready to go to battle? Yeah.
Yeah, I heard that.
Yeah.
Okay, so with who? Well, Bishop, you're the analyst.
You tell me.
It's got to be the Russians, right? I mean, they're the ones who have been trying to destabilize us for years, but for it to spill into open hostilities? I-I I don't believe it could get this bad this quickly.
Maybe it hasn't.
You think the attack orders are fake? I think the guy who fires the torpedoes is now a murder suspect.
So, we need the captain to verify his orders.
What's this for? You are right.
We are locked up tight.
But the air isn't.
McGEE: Okay, we need to cover all of Northern Virginia fast.
Go in teams of two, spiral search pattern.
Gas stations, supply stores.
Someone must have seen this guy.
State police are setting up checkpoints.
I got BOLOs out across the entire state.
I hope we're not wrong.
What if Miller isn't in Virginia at all? Oh, he is.
How do you know? It's what I do.
We got to start somewhere.
We can't search the entire country.
We might not have to.
Tell them what you told me.
Yes, we were going over an old cold case where the culprit is a hermit, not unlike Walter Miller.
(stammers) Even though the defining trait of a hermit is a, a desire for solitude They usually stay in contact with at least one person.
Sorry, Ducky.
So we dug deeper into Miller's background and found out that he has an aunt that he used to live with as a kid! SLOANE: Oh, right.
Aunt Jessie.
Who lives in a retirement home at a V.
A.
in Maryland.
KASIE: And take a look at Aunt Jessie's phone records.
See there? The first of every month, she gets a call.
From a camping supply store pay phone.
(chuckles) Who uses a pay phone anymore? A hermit without a cell phone in the hills of northern Virginia.
Nice.
MAN (over intercom): Alert one.
Alert one.
Final systems check.
Prepare for incoming.
(alert chiming) (groaning) Yeah.
I'm kind of sorry about that.
(coughing) The bridge is that way.
Let's go.
McGEE: All right, the store owner was able to identify Miller.
He drew us a map to the cabin.
Just go to the end of the road here.
All right, let Vance know we're close.
That's got to be Miller's cabin.
You know, something about this place feels familiar.
Hey, you think that Gibbs would ever end up like a-- like a crazy hermit? No.
Gibbs wouldn't have all these radio towers.
I don't know, man.
I think he would.
REPORTER: Pentagon officials are refusing to comment on the rumors that a nuclear submarine has gone missing, though our sources are telling us otherwise.
(clatters) In truth, the geopolitical (radio switches off) Don't even think about it.
NCIS.
Hands in the air.
Turn around.
Turn around! Looks like he's bouncing his signal off one of our satellites.
(grunts) You're too late.
And you're a weird, creepy hermit.
In my hand are a set of orders to fire upon the Russian fleet, who are, at this moment, preparing to launch a preemptive strike against multiple targets in the U.
S.
We'll be within range in the next four minutes.
XO, please confirm.
I confirm.
May God help us all.
Chief of the Watch, flood tubes one and two.
Aye, sir.
Weapons Conn fire on my order.
Aye, sir.
Captain, we need to talk.
What the hell are you doing here? We are in the middle of a torpedo launch.
And we have reason to believe those launch orders may be invalid.
They've been authenticated.
Now get off my bridge.
- - We're not going anywhere.
Then I'll have you thrown off.
Try.
TORRES: McGee, what are you waiting for? Send the stand-down order.
I'm-I'm not sure how.
Uh, the orders have to be properly formatted or the system won't take 'em, okay? I-I don't remember whether the hash goes before the bang or even how many splats to use.
- Tim, you have to figure this out.
- (sighs) I've never done anything like this before, okay? It's not like I can just call in a lifeline.
I said off my bridge.
Are you gonna tell him? Or am I? Tell me what? Straussy, hey, it's Tim.
Listen, are you still working on that hyperrealistic sub simulation game? BISHOP: Your weapons officer needs to be relieved from duty.
Excuse me? And your orders reauthenticated by somebody else.
He's a suspect in our murder investigation.
This is ridiculous.
Chief of the Boat, escort these two off the bridge.
XO, belay that order.
Conn-sonar, 90 seconds from target.
Agent Gibbs, do you have proof my weapons officer was involved in White's murder? You need to verify your orders.
And give away our position? Millions of lives are at stake.
I know what's at stake.
Do you have proof? Is there anything you'd like to add? - No, sir.
- Then get these two the hell off my bridge and lock them in the brig.
Federal agents.
Drop the weapon! Drop it! You're under arrest.
SHAW: Agent Gibbs Step away from the station, now.
Drop your weapon! LEO: The USS Memphis is about to cross the red line, Leon.
We can't wait.
Ma'am, our people have found Miller.
The chairman of the joint chiefs just gave the strike order.
I wanted you to hear it from me before it happened.
Look-- ma'am, we need more time.
You have less than a minute.
HARDY: We are at war! Our orders have been authenticated.
Agent Gibbs, drop your weapon! Step away from your station.
The Russians are fueling their weapons now.
Shaw, shoot him! You will spend the rest of your life in federal prison You did something to this boat, you killed White.
if you do not drop that weapon! - What did you do? - Alert one, alert one.
Incoming message.
PULLMAN: Captain, we have a properly formatted incoming message.
COB Shaw, lower your sidearm.
What? No! We need to launch.
Get your hands up! We've been ordered to stand down and surface at once.
15 degrees up bubble.
Prepare to surface.
We need to launch! If we do not launch, we are going to die! Maybe not today, but soon enough! We have to launch! Agent Gibbs, will you kindly escort Petty Officer Hardy off the bridge? Kindly.
Bishop.
Got it.
The order go through? Went through.
Surfacing now.
TORRES: All right.
I guess World War III is gonna have to wait.
Listen to me.
We have to launch.
We have to launch.
TORRES: Blah, blah, blah, creepy hermit.
Straussy, hey.
Thanks for the info, man.
Yep, writing a book about a sub.
How'd you guess? TORRES: So what was that weapons guy doing in the kitchen? Well, he was installing a device in an electrical conduit that fed into the antenna room next door.
And that's what blocked the Navy's signals? Yep, and only allowed Miller's transmissions to go through.
What about Petty Officer White? Once he asked for that kitchen manual, there was only a matter of time before the device was discovered, so Bye-bye, Petty Officer White.
Mm.
Agent Bishop.
I'm glad to have you back.
Not as glad as I am to be back.
You know, for a second, we thought we almost lost you guys.
Okay, so, uh, we're (clears throat) we're gonna be late.
Oh, that's right.
What? Late? Late for what? What? Hello? You guys It's fascinating.
The psychology of these two men could not be more different.
SLOANE: Yet they landed in the same place.
DUCKY: World peace through world war.
Well, they're certainly not the only ones to follow the rabbit down the hole.
My guess is, after Hardy's family was killed, he came unglued looking for meaning in his life and started talking to the wrong people.
He met Miller in a chat room two years ago.
You know, the Internet will be the death of us all.
I can't imagine you're going to struggle for the meaning of life post-retirement.
Hardly.
I have so many projects planned, I don't know where to start.
Well, I think you're doing just fine so far.
- Director.
- In fact, the chairman of the joint chiefs wanted me to thank you personally for saving our butts.
Well, it was a team effort.
But we couldn't have done it without you.
And you're an invaluable member of that team.
Why do I get the feeling I'm being set up? I have no idea what you're talking about, Doctor.
But we should keep walking.
This way.
DUCKY: If this is a surprise party, you know I would rather shave my eyeballs.
Dr.
Mallard, you're a living, breathing encyclopedia of the entire history of NCIS.
GIBBS: This place is what it is because of you, Duck.
And this case showed us just how valuable your wealth of knowledge can be.
I-I appreciate the compliments, gentlemen, but I need a change.
Yeah, you do.
Yeah, and so do we.
Excuse me.
This way, please.
Dr.
Mallard, I, um, assume that you are aware that FBI and CIA have agency historians, whose purpose is to insure that the collective knowledge of those institutions live on for future generations.
Yeah, of course.
(chuckles): But, uh, what has that to do with me? "Donald Mallard, MD, NCIS Historian"? Now, if you need some time to think Can I come and go as I please? Why, yes.
Does it come with a badge and gun? No.
No.
(chuckles) So it's, uh, paid, part-time work.
Well, now, I suppose this is not the time to discuss contractual details.
Mm, is that a yes? It sounded like a yes.
Well if you insist.
- That was a yes.
JIMMY: That's a yes.
(laughter, applause) All right.
VANCE: Um your office still needs work.
(chuckles) Yes, it does.
(soft laughter) (chuckles)