Pairing: Leroy Jethro Gibbs/Donald 'Ducky' Mallard
Author on LJ: causticquery
Author Website: Gibbs/Ducky Archive
Why this must be read:
Anguis In Herba is a missing scene story from 'Red Cell'. It's premise is simple: after his fight with the somewhat younger Gunnery Sergeant, Gibbs goes to Ducky to be healed, both physically and emotionally.
As with the vast majority of Caz's stories this contains angst, but this time only a smidgeon. The scene was clear to see and hear, and Caz shows us how sometimes it's the healer who hurts more than the person he is healing. The story is tender, moving, intense, in character and contains the kind of dialogue that only two such old friends and lovers can have.
Gibbs winced as gentle fingers probed at increasingly tender flesh beneath his eye. Ducky offered a distracted but heartfelt ‘sorry’ as he continued examining the damage inflicted by fists. Finally content that there was little more to the wounds than what could be seen, the older man pulled back slightly. He gestured towards his cheek and jaw.
“You’ll need ice on those,”
Gibbs resisted the urge to roll his eyes having made that diagnosis for himself.
“I assume you had back-up. Where were Kate and DiNozzo while you were getting half-beaten to death?”
His tone had taken on a sharp edge, one that Gibbs had thankfully only had aimed at him twice over the years, although he’d deserved to hear it more often than that. Ducky had skipped angry and was heading for homicidal.
Although the room had eyes, it had yet to develop permanent ears and as such there was a definite freedom of speech for them in autopsy. But the habit, the routine they’d established while working together often prevented them from saying what they really wanted to even alone in the bowels of the Navy Yard. If the words themselves were mundane though, the sentiments that underpinned their relationship were allowed free rein in a way that for a long time had only ever been achieved behind safely locked doors in their respective homes. As always his tone said everything his words didn’t. I love you, I want you, I need you. I worry about you.
Anguis In Herba