ARE YOU DANCING?
Tim and Jimmy meet in a club, but other than names they decide not to share any other information.
A first time story.
Written: March 2013. Word count: 2,420.
Tim smoothed his hair down for the third time, straightened his jacket for the fourth time, checked his wallet for the five time and then looked down at himself, moistened his lips, swallowed hard and pushed open the door and went into the rather elegant looking foyer.
A man about ten years older than Tim sat behind a desk; he looked up when Tim got nearer to the desk and smiled, showing a set of perfectly white, perfectly even teeth. "Good evening, sir," he said, his tone like his look was welcoming. "Welcome to Enrico's. Is this your first visit?"
Tim nodded. "Yes."
The man also nodded. "I thought so; I make a point of remembering regular patrons."
Tim felt more at ease than he had done before he'd pushed the door open; the man was good, in fact he was very good. Tim didn't for a moment get a feeling the man was hitting on him, nor did he feel the pleasantries were all an act, just designed to put people at their ease. He actually got the feeling the man enjoyed his job and was quite genuine. "Well," he said, pulling out his wallet, "I hope you'll be seeing me again."
"So I do I, sir. You'll find Enrico's a very nice place, if that isn't too insipid a word. A friendly place, without being pushy, if you understand my meaning."
Tim nodded. "Yes, I do."
The man smiled again. "Good. And the management assures not only the safely of its patrons but also that details of all members remain strictly confidential - you share with other gentlemen only as much as you wish to share."
Tim smiled. The man had confirmed everything he had heard about the club; it was the main reason he had chosen to go there. Of course you paid for that kind of guarantee, just as you paid for the friendly, professional, sincere welcome and the obvious cleanliness - but that didnít really matter to Tim. He didn't have expensive tastes, outside of books and computers; he could quite easily afford the membership fee.
"Do forgive my manners, sir, I should have introduced myself. My name is John Horton," he held out his hand.
Tim took it and shook it. "Timothy McGee," he said, suddenly placing the accent or rather indentifying the almost non-accent; the man was British. It was hardly identifiable, but it was there.
"Well, Mr. McGee, or may I call you Timothy?"
"Thank you. Well, Timothy, do you wish to join immediately or just visit us for the evening?"
Tim swallowed. "I'd like to join now, if that's all right." He knew if he didn't he would find an excuse, any excuse not to do so.
John smiled and nodded as he opened a drawer and pulled out some papers. "That's perfectly all right, Timothy," he said. "Now if you'd like to take a seat over there, these shouldn't take too long to fill out - rest assured they do not require you to reveal too much information."
"Thank you." Tim took the forms and went over to the table John had indicated, sat down, read through the forms swiftly and then filled them out. Once he'd completed and signed them he went back to John and handed the forms over, along with his credit card. He had considered paying cash, but he really hadn't wanted to walk around with quite that much cash in his wallet and after all he wasn't ashamed of joining the club.
The process went very quickly and within a matter of minutes Tim had a membership card, a small book about the club and a voucher for two complimentary drinks valid for that evening and another for a meal for two valid for two months.
Tim glanced through the book about the club, noting the rules page and then pushed it, his membership card and the vouchers into his pocket. He smiled at John, swallowed hard again and pushed open the door and went into the main room of the club.
He stood just inside the doorway and looked around him; immediately he felt at home, he felt at ease. It was not only a nice place, it was a very nice place; it was well furnished and fairly expensively furnished but not in an obvious way, it was classy and very up-market, but again not to the extent where you felt out of place if you weren't dressed in a formal suit and dress shirt. There was a dress code, but it was a fairly relaxed one.
There was a bar, booths, tables, a dance floor and on the opposite side of the room Tim could see another door which he guessed led to the formal dining room. Yes, he liked it; he liked it a lot. Now all it needed was for him to meet a nice young man.
He glanced around the room letting his eyes come to rest on the various men standing alone and his gaze lingered on one young man in particular. He was about the same height as Tim, but rather gangly and slimmer, he wore glasses, appeared to be a year or so younger than Tim and was gripping a glass so tightly Tim could see how white his hand was, added to that he was clearly trying to fade into the background.
There was something about him which immediately attracted Tim, so after going to the bar and asking for a glass of white wine he circled around the room and finally came to stand by the young man. "Hello," he said as he smiled and held out his hand. "I'm Timothy, Tim."
The man gulped, glanced around him, flushed slightly, he then changed the glass from his left hand to his right before changing it back again and holding out his hand. "Jimmy," he said. "I haven't seen you before, have I?"
Tim shook his head. "No, it's my first time."
"It's my second - I very nearly didn't come back."
Tim frowned. "Why not? Did something happen? I thought this was a nice, respectable place."
Jimmy quickly shook his head. "No, nothing happened and it is, it's just well I . . . I've never -"
"Done this before?"
Jimmy nodded and flushed a little more. "Yes. You must think I'm . . ."
Tim shook his head. "I don't think anything, Jimmy, other than you look like the kind of man I'd like to have a drink with."
"You would?" Jimmy sounded more than a little surprised.
Tim smiled. "Yes, I would. What can I get you?"
"Um, vodka and tonic, please."
Tim nodded. "Why don't you go and sit down and I'll bring our drinks over."
Jimmy nodded, moved, somehow tripped over his feet, regained his balance and, cheeks now a bright red, made his way to a table. Tim watched him go and felt even more at ease and very glad he had spotted Jimmy. Maybe you shouldn't judge people on one look, on one exchange, but he'd learned how to read people quite well in the time he'd been working for Gibbs, and he got a good feeling about Jimmy.
"Here you are," he said, putting Jimmy's drink down onto the table and sitting down next to him.
"Thank you, Tim."
Tim held his glass up. "Your good health."
Jimmy touched his glass against Tim's and smiled. "Your good health."
They fell into easy conversation, talking about books and music and films and even the weather. But mutual silent agreement they didn't ask one another about their jobs or even their surnames or anything too personal. Tim was glad; he was very glad. For that one evening he wanted to be judged as himself, not by the job he did and once you mentioned that you worked for a Federal agency (always assuming the other person had heard of or knew that NCIS stood for) things seemed to change, if only subtly.
And he didn't want to confess yet to being a writer, a published writer; he didnít want to admit to being Thom E. Gemcity, because he wanted to get to know Jimmy first. He knew he really did want to get to know Jimmy, to get to know him well, very well even, before he told him about his writing, because again once someone knew you were an author it changed things and not always for the better. Not that he thought Jimmy was the kind of young man to take advantage of such information or to try to get something out of Tim, but it seemed to Tim as he never had a moment these days to just be 'Tim' and tonight he was going to do that thing.
Suddenly the small band started to play one of Tim's favorite songs; he put his wine glass down and looked at Jimmy. "Would you like to dance, Jimmy?"
Jimmy stared at him and his cheeks flushed a little. "I'm not a very good . . . That is I'm a pretty bad dancer," he said.
Tim shrugged. "That doesn't matter; I'm not that great myself." He stood up and held out his hand and after a moment Jimmy took it and Tim led him onto the dance floor. He put his hands on Jimmy's shoulders and after a second or two Jimmy put his on Tim's waist and after a few false starts they began to move in synchrony to the music.
Now they were even closer Tim could pick up the subtle scent of Jimmy's cologne and he liked the scent very much; it was understated and gentle - just like Jimmy himself. They danced together for three more dances before the tempo changed and Tim took Jimmy's hand and led him back to the table where they sat down, both of them moving their chairs just a little closer to the one another's.
After a few more minutes of just talking Jimmy stood up and went to fetch some more drinks, Tim watched him walk to the bar and liked what he saw, Jimmy had taken his jacket off when they'd sat back down and his trousers fitted him well; it wasn't exaggerated, they weren't ultra tight, they were just slightly snug and accentuated Jimmy's thighs and buttocks. If Tim was a different type of man he would suggest they forgot the drinks and instead go back to his apartment - but he wasn't like that and he was certain Jimmy wasn't like that either.
He saw Jimmy as being in his life for quite some time, maybe even for life, and he wasn't in any hurry to rush things. He knew that most people thought that all gay men only had one agenda: to get another man into bed and fuck him, but that wasn't true - it didn't come close to being true. Of course some gay men were like that, but then so were some straight men and women - there was as much variety in the gay world as there was in the straight; it was just that straight men and women didn't believe that; they thought they knew better.
Jimmy came back with the drinks and once more sat down, turning his chair slightly so he was facing Tim a little more and they began to talk again about - well about everything apart from their jobs and it really felt so very right and natural.
"I'd like to see you again, Jimmy," Tim said a few minutes before he was thinking of calling it a night
Jimmy beamed. "I'd like that too, Tim," he said.
"How about dinner - later this week or next week?"
Jimmy nodded. "Dinner would be lovely. This week?" Then he flushed and added, "Or does that make me seem too eager?"
Tim laughed lightly. "Not at all - I was really hoping you'd say this week."
"Were you?" Jimmy looked and sounded delighted and a little surprised.
Tim nodded. "Yes, I was. Look, if it doesn't sound cheap, I have a -"
"Voucher for a meal for two here?"
Tim laughed. "You too?"
Jimmy nodded. "I only joined last week."
"Well, here it is then. We can use mine, as I asked you, this week and then maybe yours next - if you want to that is, if you don't think I'm being too -"
To Tim's surprise the light touch of Jimmy's lips on his for no more than a second or two silenced him. When Jimmy moved back a little he was once more flushed. "I hope you don't mind, Tim. I hope you don't think I'm . . . Because I'm not. I don't - Well, I don't. I know everyone thinks gay men only want one thing, but I'm not like that."
Tim took Jimmy's hand and lifted it to his lips. "Nor am I, Jimmy," he said. "But in answer to your question, no I didn't mind you kissing me, I didn't mind at all. In fact -" And this time Tim put his lips on Jimmy's for a second or two. Yes, it really did feel natural; it really did feel right.
They left together and parted outside after making arrangements to meet two evenings later at seven o'clock for dinner. They parted with a far more intimate handshake than Tim had ever experienced and yet it had been just that - a handshake. But he realized as he put his hands in his pockets and walked home that nothing with Jimmy would be 'just' no matter how ordinary.
THE NEXT DAY
"Sure, Duck, on our way." Gibbs put the phone down and stood up; Tim, Tony and Ziva got to their feet as well and followed Gibbs out of the squad room and into the elevator which took them down to Autopsy.
The doors parted for them and Gibbs led the way inside. "Hey, Duck, we're here."
Ducky beamed at Gibbs. "Thank you, Jethro. Well, I'd like to introduce you all to my new assistant. Mr. Palmer, may I introduce you to Special Agents Jethro Gibbs, Anthony DiNozzo and Timothy McGee and Mossad Liaison Officer Ziva David. Ziva, gentleman, this is Mr. Jimmy Palmer."
"Hello," Jimmy said and then his mouth fell open slightly and his eyes grew wide as he just stared at Tim who after a split second smiled back in what he hoped, in what he really hoped, was a reassuring way.
What To Do is the sequel to this story.
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