Title: Ten Years In The Making.
Author: Me! (Nightingale29)
Characters/Pairings: Gibbs/DiNozzo, mentions of Gibbs/Hollis Mann, Tony/EJ Barrett...in fact everyone makes a brief appearance.
Genre: Slash, Humor, a little angst, a little schmoop...a little of everything.
Spoilers: All seasons from 1 to 9 are covered especially S9E8 'Engaged pt 1' Tony's bucket list strikes again!
Warnings: Mentions of all previous het relationships.
Word Count: 2089
Disclaimer: Don't own them but if Santa's listening I've been a really good girl this year...
Summery: Ten years of ups and downs, of breaking up and making up. Isn't it about time they got that happy ending?
AN: First fic (if you don't include that little poetic offering last week) Written to go with a piece of artwork a few people suggested I do after I did #15 on Tony's bucket list - a DiNozzo's coat of arms. This started out as a few words to accompany the art and kinda took on a life of it's own! Many many thanks to the wonderful sinfulslasher for the beta any remaining mistakes are mine for not paying attention.
Artwork: The artwork is my second offering for the calender and can be found all wraped up at the end of the fic, just click on Tony's pressie to open it *g*. The link will take you to my scrapbook for the moment because I'm super sneaky and didn't want it to be seen before you've read the fic (trust me it does matter which way round you do this). I might post it to my LJ proper after Xmas... although I kinda like it where it is :)
Spoilers: Above spoilers for S9E8 'Engaged pt 1' apply to the art too.
Ten Years In The Making
Once upon a time (because that's how all happily ever after stories start, don't they?) there were two Very Special Agents. From the first moment they met (flying tackle in an alley in Baltimore...hands down the best meeting ever!) they were destined to be together. And they pretty much knew where destiny was leading them when Gibbs first slapped Tony upside the head and Tony had an unexpected reaction in a very interesting place.
The first time they kissed the younger of the two, Anthony 'Tony' DiNozzo (handsome, movie loving hottie with a killer smile and a lot smarter than some people gave him credit for), had been forced out of his apartment when his boiler blew, leaving him homeless. The older, Leroy Jethro Gibbs (boat-building, silver-haired fox, former Marine with a fierce coffee addiction and piercing blue eyes), had taken pity on his agent and allowed him to stay at his house until the boiler could be fixed (reluctantly, because last time Tony had stayed with him he'd broken the coffee maker...and a decaffeinated Gibbs is Not A Good Thing!).
The kiss, they both agreed, had been a mistake. It had been a long week and they were both still a little punchy (almost being blown up by a crazy bomb maker out for revenge will do that to you), so it would be better all round if they never thought or spoke of it again...and then they spent the best part of the next few months completely ignoring the habit they had of finishing each other's sentences and gazing into each others eyes at every opportunity.
Then Tony went missing, chained to a convict during an undercover assignment and cut off from his team. Gibbs spent a few frantic days searching for the other man all the while pretending to their other team member Caitlin Todd (ex-secret service agent they'd met on Air Force One with a wicked elbow jab she usually aimed at Tony) that he wasn't in the least bit worried...
Didn't fool me. How about you?
When they finally found him, Gibbs covered up his worry with sarcasm and jokes but after all the reports were filed and Ducky (story-telling medical examiner and unofficial doctor-on-call to the team) had checked him over, Gibbs took him home, pulled him into the bathroom, stripped him of his clothes and pushed him into the shower. It was quite a shock to Tony when five minutes later the shower curtain was pulled back and a very naked Gibbs stepped in, pushed him up against the tiled wall and kissed him senseless...But you can't fight the inevitable, can you?
After that they were most definitely together. They didn't tell the team, although Abby (caffeine-fuelled, gothly-attired forensic specialist extraordinaire) suspected, but one Gibbs Glare of Doom™ later and she knew discretion was the way to go. Tony always thought Tim McGee (computer geek, part-time author and elf lord) knew something but they both knew Abby would keep him in line.
Being together wasn't always easy. Life can throw curve balls at everyone, after all, and these two had their fair share of them. Terrorists, plague-filled letters, the death of a team mate, a new Director, Jenny Shepard (feisty red-head who turned out to be Gibbs ex-partner... in more ways than one), a new team mate Ziva David (bad ass Mossad agent who drives worse than Gibbs... and we all know that's saying something!) and Tony was suspected of murder...but through it all they were by each other's side.
And then came the explosion...After that things kinda went a little pear-shaped.
Gibbs left for Mexico...retired with nothing more than 'You’ll do' to Tony. He barely remembered his team and definitely didn't remember their relationship and Tony was left to pick up the pieces...it was then, when Tony was at his most vulnerable, that Madame Director pulled him into her little vendetta. An undercover operation that he got completely lost in and that would eventually nearly cost him his life.
Gibbs was dragged back into the fold by Ziva (with longer hair that suited him and a strange piece of hair on his upper lip that most certainly did not!), but it was clear his memory hadn't completely returned so Tony turned down a team lead in Spain and let himself fall in love with his undercover girlfriend and Gibbs got himself involved with a pushy Army Colonel who really wasn't for him.
After Gibbs watched Tony’s beloved car and, so they thought at the time, Tony blown all to hell in MTAC (big screen, surround sound...not the best place to see something like that), he was sufficiently shaken to tell Tony he remembered their relationship...Not the best timing, and the fact he was still involved with the pushy Army Colonel didn’t help matters much. Tony, naturally, wasn't really in the mood to hear that and told him so...loudly...with lots of swearing...and then told him to take a hike. (Well, wouldn't you?) Which was probably for the best as Gibbs wasn't sure what he wanted anyway. I guess you could say by this time they had pretty much gone their separate ways.
The guys still worked together and cases came and went. Sometimes it looked like they were getting back some of what they had way back in Baltimore when they'd grinned at each other across a desk in Tony's old squad room...perfectly in tune. And sometimes they were as far apart as two people could possibly be. Gibbs almost getting himself and his late daughter's best friend killed (and Tony having to dive into the freezing water to save them) didn't help at all because as relieved as Tony was that he'd been in time, he was also furious at Gibbs for going rogue in the first place.
And Tony was suspected of murder...again....
Then Jenny Shepard was killed while doing what she'd always accused Gibbs of doing (going rogue and trying to take care of things on her own). A new Director, Leon Vance, was appointed (boxing-loving family man with an agenda all of his own) and promptly split the team up, sending McGee to the basement, Ziva home to Israel and marooning Tony on a ship in the middle of the ocean as Agent Afloat. Gibbs was given a shiny new team (one of whom was a traitor) and told to suck it up and get on with it.
After Gibbs finally got Tony back to DC (and managed to pry him away from Abby), he took him home, sat him down and told him he'd missed him and was there any chance they could try again? Tony, who had missed his home and his team and Gibbs more than he could have thought possible, said yes.
They took it slower this time...They didn't jump into bed that night or the next. Gibbs gave Tony a chance to get used to being on dry land again and Tony needed to be sure Gibbs really wanted him in his life, and for the most part things were good.
Time marched on. They had their ups and downs and old niggling doubts began to surface which caused them to do stupid things, which in turn caused stupid rows and...well...eventually it wasn't so much a big thing but a bunch of silly little things that split them up again. (not quite so explosively this time and they refused to let their friendship suffer)
But still there was the odd night here and there. After a hard case, when one of them needed to forget and they needed someone to hold on to, or on nights when Tony stayed over after cowboy style steak and one too many beers...he was a Federal Agent, after all, and he would never drink and drive (although he could have said no to that last beer)... and simply just because....
You see, even though they were hopeless at being together...they were equally hopeless at being apart.
Then Tony found himself fascinated by Special Agent EJ Barrett.......
Mainly he was caught up in what might have been. She represented where he would have been if he'd taken the job Jenny Shepard had offered him in Spain. Gibbs got insanely jealous (so much fun to watch) and a serial killer needed to be caught. Then Gibbs' old boss Mike Franks (chain-smoking ex-NCIS agent who'd once knocked Tony out) was killed and Tony was pulled into another secret operation. But Tony had learned his lesson well and the first thing he did was go to Gibbs and tell him about his meeting with the new Sec Nav.
And then Tony asked Gibbs to wait for him, because when he was done with this mission he and Gibbs were going to talk. He was tired of this on-again-off-again thing and they were both getting too damn old for one-night stands, so could they please just stop messing around and try and make a life together?
So here we are now. Ten years after they first met and these two stubborn idiots finally are together. Tony has pretty much moved into Gibbs' house, the team knows about them, Christmas is here and it’s time they got that happily ever after we all want for them...After all these years and everything they've been through, they deserve it.
Except...(Oh come on! You knew there had to be one more thing, didn't you?)
Gibbs has never really been able to make a relationship truly work because he's a stubborn bastard who won't let himself be completely happy. He’s never quite been able to let go of his first wife (who he tried to replace by marrying three more redheads) and in some ways this is what messed up his relationship with Tony in the past. But now, after all this time, he's almost there...he just needs one more push...And who better to give him that push than Shannon herself?
You see, a few weeks ago Gibbs started having dreams...dreams of Shannon...And she told him what she's been trying to tell him for years but until now he hasn’t been able (or willing) to hear...
She told him to let her go...Told him that he would never get what he truly needed until he did.
And Gibbs finally gets it. Because what Gibbs truly needs is Tony...He has done now for ten years but Tony doesn't really know that, does he? And Gibbs realizes that it’s not about Tony being willing to settle down with him (which, of course, he is)...but that Tony is willing to settle for however much of himself Gibbs is able to give. (And that’s not really fair, is it?)
So when, a few weeks after that first dream, Tony gleefully shows him the coat of arms he had commissioned online and makes a show of ticking another item off that damn bucket list, Gibbs gets an idea for a Christmas present. He spends the next few weeks working in the basement making something that will show Tony he's with him...right here, right now and for the rest of their lives.
Christmas morning finds them sitting on the floor in front of the fire. Tony has almost finished going through his pile of gifts and Gibbs is on his second coffee (because we all know an decaffeinated Gibbs, even on Christmas morning, is Not A Good Thing!) and Tony is trying very hard not to be disappointed by the lack of gift(s) from Gibbs.
That is, of course, until Gibbs pulls out from the side of the sofa (where he’d hidden it after Tony had gone to sleep last night...sneaky little Gibbs) a square red box with a silver ribbon (Abby's doing) and hands it to a now grinning Tony.
When Tony gets a look at what’s inside he's actually speechless (not something we see every day but they do say there’s a first time for everything) but, you see, that’s exactly what Gibbs wanted. He wanted something to show Tony without a doubt that he means every word he’s about to say...
But when Gibbs pulls from his pocket Tony’s second Christmas present, another square box, this one much smaller than the first, and hands it to the other man, he knows he doesn't need a long speech or fancy words. In fact, there are only two words he really needs.
Remember that happily ever after we wanted for them?...It’s finally here.
And it was only ten years in the making.
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