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In the second to last episode of NCIS before the season finale, Special Agent DiNozzo is on his own when he has to protect an Admiral’s daughter. When the episode begins, we see Tony’s mug shot on television, where he is apparently wanted for murder. He is inside a food cart, tying up a man who apparently spotted him. Tony walks out to see a young woman, who asks him what they do, and he replies, “Run.”
Thirty-six hours earlier in Washington, Tony rushes into Vance’s office, at first thinking he is in trouble over totaling a surveillance van. However, Vance introduces him to Admiral Kendall, who has taken over for the Joint Chiefs. Tony is being asked to run a seminar in Marseilles on Internet security. However, he is really going there to pick up the Admiral’s daughter, Amanda, who was photographed partying with relatives of both an arms dealer and Iranian, respectively. One of the individuals is named is Amir. The Admiral is worried she is vulnerable so Tony will go to pick her up. Gibbs has already been informed.
Tim is giving Tony a hard time about going to an Internet seminar, but Tony counters that his questionable website surfing makes him a perfect candidate. Soon, Ducky comes up, asking Tim to help make his new phone brighter. Jimmy has gotten him addicted to a game called Symbolese, a game where people decipher phrases from pictures. Gibbs comes in and asks Tony if he should be on a plane by now and Tony says he has his go bag, which Ellie is surprised to find out is normal for them. Gibbs gets a call about a dead body in Norfolk.
In France, Tony is enjoying a meal when he sees the check. He calls Tim, who tells Tony the body they found is inside a septic tank, and he used Tony’s trick coin to send Ellie in to get the body. However, Gibbs gives him Hazmat gear and sends him in as well. Tony gleefully hangs up to go inside the NCIS office. However, when he sees the security camera, he realizes it has been cut. Getting out his gun, he goes inside, searching the room where he sees dead bodies. Suddenly, French police officers inside the building hold him at gunpoint.
Abby is looking at the septic tank and she tells Gibbs she was unable to pull prints off the body because it was too waterlogged. Gibbs gets a call from Tony’s phone, but instead of Tony, it is one of the police officers. An inspector tells the officer to uncuff Tony and gives Tony the phone to talk to Gibbs. Tony informs Gibbs all five NCIS employees are dead, but there is no sign of Amanda.
The female inspector, Isabel Cheblis, and Tony exchange flirty banter, when the inspector hands Tony photographs of Amanda. Tony claims not to know her as the inspector claims that she is a suspect, as she was seen climbing out a back window in the office where the agents were killed. The inspector tells Tony they need to “probe” his gun to make sure it has not been fired, to eliminate him.
Vance and Gibbs talk in MTAC. The Secretary is working on a joint investigation with the French into the murder of the five individuals, two of who were NCIS agents. They don’t think Amanda is a suspect, but agree Tony needs to get her home. Vance is glad the media hasn’t gotten wind, so he can call the Admiral.
At a club, Tony is looking around for Amanda. A woman directs him to her, where she is doing shots. She asks the people around her where Amir is, but no one knows. Tony makes his presence known and through their interaction, it becomes clear she doesn’t know the NCIS agents are dead. When the NCIS agent picked her up, she escaped through a back window, without having seen the killer. Tony convinces her she’s only safe with him and Amanda agrees to go. She tells a friend to have Amir call her before they leave. Unfortunately as soon as they step out, Inspector Cheblis. She claims to have Tony’s gun ready and they can go talk at the station, but Tony suggests the U.S. Consulate. Suddenly, the inspector holds the gun to them and fires at her police officer. Tony takes Amanda’s hand, causing her to drop her phone, and they run away.
Jimmy and Ducky are looking over Ducky’s phone, which has been overrun with apps. Jimmy notes that Ducky beat his high score in Symbolese. Gibbs comes down and tells them they should be getting the bodies from Marseilles soon. Their dead body from the tank is a man named Zach Martin. He apparently was tortured, which is surprising for them given that he apparently only worked at an employment office. They discuss Tony, who apparently should be on a plane home.
However, we find Tony and Amanda still in France. They sit down on a bench after running all night and Tony asks what Inspector Cheblis could have wanted with her. Amanda has no idea. Tony is about to use his phone to call NCIS when he realizes there’s a possibility Cheblis has his contacts and his phone could be tracked. Amanda grabs his phone and smashes it with the heel of her shoe, before Tony can tell her he took the battery out already. He decides they should rent a car to drive to the NCIS office in Rota, Spain. They go to a food cart to get some food, but then Tony sees himself on the news. He has been framed for the murder of the police officer from the night before. We then see the same scene from the beginning of the episode. Amanda gets an idea to go with “progressive trance.”
Her friends from before pick them up on a road in a big van, where they are partying and listening to music. Tony is worried they may have seen the news, but Amanda assures him they didn’t. Amanda still doesn’t want to go to Rota and she keeps asking about Amir. He is apparently with their friend, Lila. Tony finds a cell phone, where the game Symbolese is on the screen.
Tim and Ellie go to Martin’s office, where Ellie is accusing Tim of using a trick coin to get her to do the dirty work. They enter the waiting area, and see the receptionist playing a game on her phone. She apparently thinks her boss is in his office, and Tim is surprised since he is dead. They find out there is something fishy going on with Martin’s work, as he supposedly is a headhunter and doesn’t have any clients, only conducting business by phone.
Abby and Gibbs are in her lab, where she found that Zach Martin did not use any of the items found in his office. She proceeds to tell Gibbs Zach Martin is not the man’s real name, and his real name is Zakaria Hassan. When Abby pulls up yearbook photos of him, Gibbs notices Amanda Kendall is also in a photo with him. They had known each other at Georgetown.
Tim is going on about knowing Tony was never at a seminar while Ellie is unable to reach him by phone. They realize he wasn’t on his plane as scheduled, and think there may be something going on. Gibbs comes in and pulls up the news footage of the murder in France. Tim thinks they should go, but Ellie thinks they should wait for Tony to contact them. Gibbs tells them solving the case will help DiNozzo. It is then that Jimmy comes up, as he has a message from Tony through Symbolese. He got through to Jimmy by using two cards as symbols of his nickname ‘Autopsy Gremlin.’ The next cards were a bus and a road, which Gibbs figured out meant Rota, Spain. Tim knows the NCIS office is there as well. Tony had also sent a map of Spain. They realize they will be able to send messages back to Tony.
Nighttime in France finds the bus still on the road. Tony is not amused by the antics of Amanda’s friends. Her friend, Khan, gives Tony his phone as he has a message. The symbols are a badge and a square, meaning agents will meet them at the border. Just as Tony gets new messages, he smells something funny. Apparently, the party bus is on fire. Outside, Khan goes to call his father and Tony realizes they have to keep moving, even though Amanda wants to go back to Marseilles. Tony hears sirens, and knowing cops will be there soon, they immediately rush off.
Back at NCIS, Vance is on the phone when Gibbs and Ellie walk in. The French police aren’t much help and they can’t get a hold of Tony. His last message was about a dirty cop. Vance wonders why Ellie is there, as he has to call Admiral Kendall to make sure he is calm. Ellie has information pertaining to Amanda based on the contents of Zakaria’s laptop. There were classified intelligence documents on his laptop and he got an e-mail from a classified Department of Defense log in, which apparently came from Admiral Kendall.
In the interrogation room, Gibbs and Vance talk to the Admiral. He is adamant he has no idea who Zakaria Hassan is and he didn’t send the e-mail that they show him. Someone who sent the e-mail is involved with espionage, and they don’t know who is involved.
Meanwhile, at a restaurant, Tony walks inside with Amanda. They feel it is safe since there are no televisions or cameras. Amanda is still adamant about going back to Marseilles, but Tony tells her they are going to Spain. Tony gets up to pretend to go to the bathroom and Amanda tries to leave. However, Tony stops her and sits her down to find out why she wants to go back to Marseilles.
A waitress comes by and Tony orders in French before she leaves. He empties the contents of Amanda’s purse, confirming she started the fire on the bus. He confirms NCIS sent a message about her knowing Zakaria, and even though they should be leaving, she is more worried about Amir, the son of an Iranian cabinet minister. Tony gives her his theory on why she wants to stay in France, that she is a spy for the Iranian government. However, Amanda surprises Tony by telling him Amir works for her and she works for the same agency as Tony.
Amanda is a member of the Defense Clandestine Service and her cover was a party girl. Zakaria Hassan recruited her. She met Amir 18 months ago, and he had been giving her Intel about his country. However, he was worried that he would be caught copying information about their weapons of mass destruction documents. Tony deduces the Iranians found out and killed Hassan, and are now gunning for Amanda. She doesn’t want to leave France because it would mean leaving Amir.
Tony calls Gibbs and tells him to find Amir Askari, but he can’t tell him why. He wants Admiral Kendall to organize an Alpha Team to get Amir. Tim and Abby were monitoring the call, but discover so was someone else: Inspector Cheblis. Gibbs hands Tim and Abby their respective drinks just as they see Cheblis is on the move. Gibbs tells them to track her and Tim will let Tony know through Symbolese. Gibbs has a call to make.
Tony and Amanda are staking out the building Cheblis went to, where Amanda thinks Amir may be. When Cheblis leaves the building, they decide to go in. There they find Amir and Lila, who tells them they’ve been held there since the day before. Amir is pretty beat up. Cheblis shows up ready to shoot, but Amanda pushes her and Tony takes the gun. Then, Lila turns on Amanda by pointing a gun at her. She was hired by the Iranians kill everyone. She tells him to drop the gun, but Tony tells her there are 12 marksmen with eyes on her. Lila doesn’t believe him, until red dots appear on her body where the guns are trained. She pushes Amanda away to shoot Tony, but he shoots her before she can. Cheblis is immediately arrested.
Amanda and her dad are reunited in the squad room. Tony talks to Gibbs about the State being mad he sent in Interpol, but Gibbs says, “You got to do what you got to do.” Jimmy walks by looking at his phone and Tony is complimenting him on a nice job, but he’s not listening. He’s distracted by a Symbolese message from his wife, Breena, which he can’t understand. He shows Tony, who immediately figures it out. The photos are of a bun and an oven. Breena is pregnant! A little baby autopsy gremlin is coming!
image: Robert Voets/CBS ©2014 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved