The NCIS team is escorting a VIP through a hotel. McGee is around the rear of the hotel. Gibbs wants to know if it's clear, when McGee sees some people arguing. Suddenly, Gibbs hears some gunshots. The VIP is put in his car and Gibbs runs out to the rear of the hotel. McGee is bending over a dead guy. McGee has just killed someone for the first time ever.
Tony is taking pictures of the and praising McGee. McGee shares no such optimism. He says that he declared himself, he was shot at and he shot back three times. The car that held the dude who was arguing with the dead guy drove away. McGee shows where he was standing and Tony reassures him that they will find the slug.
Abby is happily in autopsy, watching Ducky and Palmer cut up the dead guy. Abby wants to help, and Ducky agrees. He shows three slugs. Two were non lethal. The third was the kill shot. Palmer suddenly looks uncomfortable. Ducky and Abby turn around. McGee is standing in autopsy. Abby comforts him and Ducky tells him that no one is ready for killing.
In the office, Ziva and Tony give the disturbing truth: they can't find the bullet near where McGee was. Gibbs turns to Ziva and gives her the Gibbs stare (Ziva said something that I can't remember). He tells her that McGee is not her dad. He doesn't know how to lie.
Then Abby comes in and delivers more bad news. The blood from the dead guy got a hit. John Benedict. He's an undercover.
McGee killed a cop.
Benedict's partner and boss come by and want to take the investigation and interrogate McGee. Gibbs refuses. Benedict's boss says Benedict didn't carry a gun during a undercover op. Director Shepard says that they WILL take the investigation. When they leave, the Director turns to Gibbs.
Shepard: Before you yell at me, think about how you would feel if he shot McGee and McGee didn't have a gun.
In the office, Gibbs is in a very bad mood. He tells Tony and Ziva to search for the slug again. Tony says they already looked. Gibbs gives him the look. Tony and Ziva go back to the crime scene.
Gibbs: What is going on here!?First Abby's lab buddy frames Tony and then McGee kills a cop! Did someone break a mirror!?
In Abby's lab, Abby handcuffs McGee to a chair in a 'stress free' room. When he gets out, at night, McGee is doing his 'free writing.' Trying to write his novel. Then someone knocks something bizarre on his door. It's Tony of course. He wants to try and cheer McGee up. After yelling at him, McGee explains that he just doesn't want cheering up.
McGee: Tony, I'm not like you guys. You were trained as a cop and Gibbs was trained as a marine sniper. He protected the president of the United States. Who knows what Ziva did in Mossad.
Tony tries to cheer him up by saying that it will soon be a bad memory and that when he first shot someone, he had something like what McGee was going through (minus the cop problems). McGee flashes on the night. He was already imagining that the guy didn't shoot. Now, Benedict has his hands up.
Morning time and McGee is in interrogation. The interrogator asks if McGee was really shot at. McGee flashes again and this time, Benedict has no gun.
Gibbs storms into Director Shepard's office. He is furious that McGee was made to go to Metro (the place he was interrogated I think) without him. Shepard says that McGee was just a rookie who panicked. Gibbs firmly disagrees. He is about to storm out to go to Metro when Shepard says that McGee is coming back.
When McGee does come back, Abby comes to the office with some news: one of McGee's shots missed the cop.
Abby recreates the scene. McGee declares himself. The guy in the car shot Benedict causing Benedict to go into spasm, making it look like he was going to shoot. The flash and bang of the first gun made it look like Benedict shot at McGee. McGee shot back three times and one of the bullets missed the cop.
Who shot Benedict first? None other than his partner, who was a dirty cop. When Gibbs and McGee go to arrest him, the guy almost gets away, complete with shooting McGee. McGee was supposed to be backup, but hesitates. Gibbs get the dirty cop first. He is extremely angry and McGee. McGee shows that Gibbs has made it clear that he would be fired if he does that again.
In Abby's lab, Abby is plenty happy. But when McGee comes in to find out which bullet was the real kill shot, Abby has to reveal that the bullets were to damaged. She says that it doesn't matter.
McGee: It matters to me.