EVEN AFTER ALL THESE YEARS
DiNozzo is curious about an envelope that was delivered to Gibbs and goes digging.
An established relationship story.
Written: May 2009. Word count: 1,000.
THE SQUAD ROOM
"Tony, what are you doing?" Tim looked at Tony who was squinting in the direction of Gibbs's desk.
"Nothing," Tony said quickly. Tim just looked at him. "Okay. When you were with Abby, Gibbs had something delivered to him by special courier."
"And?" Tim knew exactly what was on Tony's mind.
"And nothing, Elf Lord."
"And you want to know what it is?" Tim looked at Tony, daring him to argue.
"It could be important."
"It probably is."
"Then as Gibbs's senior agent, I need to know what it is." Tony stood up and moved towards Gibbs's desk.
"I wouldn't if I were you."
"Well, you're not me. If you were you'd be suave, have a better dress sense and -"
"Buying ties that cost over a hundred dollars. Tony, it's one thing to go through Ziva's stuff or mine, but to touch something belonging to Gibbs . . ."
Tony, about to reach for whatever the courier had delivered, froze. He looked at Tim. "Come on, Probie, you can't tell me you're not curious, can you?"
Tim glanced away. Damn Tony, of course he was. "Well -"
"Hah! Thought so. Okay, you keep watch and I'll have a quick look. It'll only take a moment. Just keep watch for me, McGee."
"This won't end well," McGee muttered. Nonetheless he kept looking between the elevators and the stairs, sparing a half glance towards Tony who had picked up an envelope.
Suddenly Tony's phone rang. Tony jumped and grabbed the phone; he must have hit speaker phone because Tim heard Gibbs's voice quite clearly.
"Put that back where you found it."
Tim watched Tony drop the envelope. "Boss?"
"Yeah, DiNozzo. That'd be me."
"I was just . . ." But Tony was talking to silence.
"I don't want to say 'I told you so, Tony', but . . ."
"But how? Where . . ." Tony trailed off and stared upwards. Tim stood up and looked in the direction Tony was looking.
There, leaning on the rail outside of MTAC, an amused looking Ducky by his side, staring down into the squad room was Gibbs. After a moment or two of just staring, Gibbs turned his head, said something to Ducky, and together they walked towards the elevator.
"I am so screwed," Tony muttered.
"Yes." Tim beamed.
"And so are you."
"Me? Why me? What have I done? I'm not the one who -"
"You kept watch."
"But that doesn't - Gibbs'll . . . He won't, will he?"
Tony beamed. "Oh, no."
Tim sighed. That's what happened for helping Tony. One day he'd learn. Then he remembered; given he was going to pay for it, he might as well know. "So what was it?" he asked, leaning forward and looking at Tony. "What the courier delivered," he added, seeing that Tony was distractedly looking in every direction.
His question clearly hit home, as Tony stopped scrutinizing the room, hurried over to Tim's desk and perched on the edge of it. "I didn't get a chance to look inside. But it was from a travel agency."
"Carefree Cruises. Their selling point is 'Cruises for the discerning traveler'."
"Gibbs is going on a cruise? I mean I know he likes boats but," Tim looked around him and leaned ever nearer to Tony. "I thought he liked the type he could build in his basement."
Tony shook his head. "That isn't the important question, McSailor."
"No. The important question is: who is Gibbs going on a cruise with."
"Right." Tim began to think.
"Not to mention the small fact that this is Gibbs. Gibbs the man who never takes vacations."
"She must be someone very special."
"Got part of that right, McGee." Gibbs strode into the office and went to his desk.
Tony and Tim glanced at one another before Tony fled back to his own desk and Tim busied himself with his computer. He noticed, out of the corner of his eye, Tony rubbing the back of his head, yet Gibbs hadn't touched him.
SEVERAL HOURS LATER
Tim wondered if Tony had spent the rest of the day as he had: wondering just when Gibbs was going to make them pay.
When six o'clock came and Gibbs stood up, grabbed his things and headed for the elevators, Tim sighed and sagged; he was exhausted from the waiting for something that hadn't come. He realized, not for the first time, just how good Gibbs was.
"Hey, Duck," Jethro called, shutting and locking the front door.
"Jethro, my dear." Ducky hurried into the hall.
"Don't sound so surprised. Told you I was coming straight here." Jethro tugged Ducky into his arms, pulling him close. "Mmm, that's better," he said, as Ducky completed the embrace.
"Yes, I know. I just wasn't expecting you quite so soon," Ducky said, his head now resting against Jethro's shoulder.
Jethro pushed him away from him a little. "Caught you, have I? You got someone else here, Duck?" He teased his lover.
Ducky rolled his eyes and sighed extravagantly before pulling Jethro's head down and kissing him. "Now," he said, after several pleasant moments had gone by, "I believe you were saying something?"
Ducky chuckled. "Did you make Anthony and poor Timothy pay?"
"Why 'poor Timothy'?"
"Because no doubt he was coerced by Anthony."
"Guess he was. But he should have learned by now. Nah, I didn't do anything to them."
Ducky smiled and his eyes twinkled. "Sometimes Leroy Jethro Gibbs, you are quite evil. Now, are you going to tell me just what it was Anthony was trying to look at?"
"Yep. Sure am." Jethro let go of Ducky for a moment, went to his briefcase and pulled out the envelope. "Here." He handed it to Ducky.
"Just open it, Duck."
Ducky did. "Jethro?" he whispered. "But. A cruise. It's -"
"Promised you a special honeymoon, Duck," Jethro said, and kissed his lover.
SEVERAL HOURS LATER
As he put together a very late supper Ducky mused that even after all these years his beloved could still surprise him. A thought that made him very pleased indeed.
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