AUTHOR: Ashleigh Anpilova
PAIRING: Leroy Jethro Gibbs/Donald 'Ducky' Mallard
SUB-GENRE: Established Relationship
SUMMARY: Set after Spider And The Fly. Gibbs is thinking about his relationship with Ducky and makes some decisions.
WORD COUNT: 1,700
SPOILERS: Spider And The Fly
AUTHOR'S NOTE: Written for sexycazzy: N - 'New Start'
DISCLAIMER: I don't own these characters, nor am I making any money from them. I merely borrow them from time to time.
It was one a.m. and Gibbs was still awake. He lay in his old bed, in his old room thinking back over the events of the last few months.
His dad's store would re-open the next day and he'd be going home. It had taken them several days to get it back in order. It probably would have taken some people less time, but one of the many things he had in common with hid dad was not cutting corners.
He put his hands behind his head, stared up at the ceiling and smiled to himself. It'd taken years, decades even, but finally he could admit he and his dad were alike. Many of his characteristics, his habits, his likes came from his dad. Who'd have thought it?
Thinking back over the last four months he realized how easy sharing his home with his dad had become. It had started out of necessity; when his dad had called to let him know about his 'visitors', Gibbs had told him he was going to fetch him and take him back to DC. His dad had tried to argue, saying he didn't need protection and had no intention of leaving Stillwater. But Gibbs had been firm. He'd driven to Stillwater that very day and had taken his dad home with him.
At the time he hadn't really thought what having his dad there day and night would be like; what sharing his home with someone again would mean. All he could think about was getting his dad to somewhere he'd be safe.
Before driving to Stillwater he'd stopped at Ducky's house to tell him the news. He'd left with strict instructions he had to provide his dad with a proper bed and not make him sleep on couch.
Gibbs had listened and not only listened, but obeyed; the one person who could get him to do anything was Ducky. Thus, when he'd brought his dad back, he'd moved into the main bedroom and let his dad have his. His dad never commented, never said a word other than 'thank you, son'.
The first few days had been fairly tough, on both men. Neither of them were used to sharing their home with someone else, especially not when every move they made was under scrutiny by the agents Vance had placed outside Gibbs's home. But then both had settled down, both had adjusted and Gibbs realized neither of them was trying too hard. It was easy, it was relaxed, it was comfortable.
And that's how it'd continued. Even through the stain of always looking over their shoulders and his dad never being allowed outside the house without the agents by his side or never knowing when the bullet might come or Paloma might reappear, it was easy. He and his dad had started again; their relationship was better than it had ever been, better than Gibbs had ever thought it would be.
Throughout the years of estrangement he'd never once stopped loving his dad; he hadn't liked him; he hadn't wanted to see him; he hadn't even respected him; but he'd never, not even for one second, stopped loving him. Now he knew when he went back to DC in the morning, he'd actually miss having his dad around.
He shifted slightly, making himself more comfortable and allowed his mind to move away from his dad to another of the three most important people in his life: Ducky. Ducky, his Ducky, the man he loved even more than he loved his dad; the man who'd received a Day of the Dead Doll. It still troubled him to know that somehow Paloma and Rivera had known who the three most important people in his life were. His dad was a given; even Abby, given the damned report, was fairly obvious. But how had they known about Ducky?
He'd barely seen Ducky outside of the office since his dad'd been staying with him. Well, it wasn't easy. He couldn't leave his dad alone overnight and the idea of making love to Ducky and then leaving him for the night didn't appeal, and he could hardly invite Ducky to his house to stay overnight.
Ducky did visit him and his dad several times for dinner and they went to Ducky's. But it wasn't the same. Ducky and his dad got on really well, conversation flowed at the dinners with Gibbs having to say very little other than 'yeah, Duck', 'yeah, Dad'. More than once he'd thought about the possibility of saying something to his dad; telling him the truth and him and Ducky, but he never knew how to.
Four months without making love to Ducky seemed like at least double that. The odd stolen kiss didn't make up for the lack of being able to hold Ducky in his arms, kiss him, stroke him, bury his nose in Ducky's heavy, silky hair. Run his -
He stopped those thoughts immediately, telling himself he'd be able to see Ducky the next night; he didn't need any kind of substitution.
He turned over, closed his eyes and tried to go to sleep. But sleep didn't come, instead his mind started on another train of thought. Something he'd given consideration to over the years, but had always pushed aside, telling himself it wouldn't work, it couldn't work. All that would happen was he'd drive Ducky away. No, it wasn't worth thinking about. But his mind had other ideas.
THE NEXT MORNING
"Good morning, son."
"Hey, Dad." Gibbs poured himself a mug of coffee and sat at the table.
"Breakfast won't be long. Bacon, eggs, mushrooms and toast. You need a good breakfast before you drive home."
Gibbs smiled and took a long swallow of the dark, black bitter liquid. "Sounds great." He took another swallow and took pleasure in the taste as it slid down his throat. "Need a hand?" he asked.
"No, you sit there."
Breakfast was good, but then it always was. That was something else Gibbs had gotten used to over the four months his dad had lived with him, actually eating proper meals. It was something he could have all the time if he wanted to. All it would take was one question.
He pushed his empty plate away and drained his mug. "Dad," he said. "Got something to tell you."
His dad looked at him. "Would it have anything to do with Ducky?"
Gibbs stared at his dad and closed his mouth he realized had fallen open. "Dad?"
"Ah, son. I'm not blind or deaf. And don't forget, I've seen how you are when you," he paused and sipped his tea. Gibbs wondered if he was gong to stay silent. Then his dad looked directly at him and said quietly, "Really love someone."
"Dad, I . . . Don't you . . . Doesn't it . . ." Gibbs came to a stuttering halt, angry with himself for feeling like he was thirteen again when his dad had caught him with his hand on Mary-Beth's ass.
"No, Jethro, it doesn't bother me at all. All I want is for you to be happy. Ducky makes you happy and I like Ducky."
"He likes you too, Dad."
"There you are then."
Gibbs reached for the coffee pot and poured himself other mug. "I'm thinking of suggesting we move in together."
His dad beamed. "That's good. It'll give me someone to talk to when I come and visit or you come here."
Gibbs rolled his eyes. "Gee, thanks, Dad." Then he looked at his dad. "Come here?"
"Of course. I think Ducky would like it here. I could show him the town and tell him all about what you got up to as a young boy."
Gibbs laughed. "That'll give you a lot of stories to tell. Dad?"
"How was it, living with me for those four months?"
"It was fine, son. You're pretty easy to live with."
Gibbs laughed again. "Not sure my ex-wives would agree."
His dad was silent for a moment or two. Then he said quietly, "But they didn't really matter, did they, son? You didn't really love them, did you?" Gibbs was speechless. His dad reached across the table and put his hand over Gibbs's and squeezed it. "Go home, Jethro. Go home to Ducky."
Gibbs sat there for a moment, feeling the pressure of his dad's hand, memories, good and bad, racing through his mind. Then he just nodded, pushed back the chair and stood up. "Thanks, Dad," he said. "I'll call you later."
Twenty-four hours after he'd lain awake in his old bed, Gibbs stood outside Ducky's Reston home - he was so glad Ducky had seen sense and not sold it and moved after all.
The journey home had taken longer than expected, due to a burst tire and two diversions. He'd called Ducky at about ten, to tell him he wasn't going to back before midnight and probably nearer one. And to say he'd go home and see Ducky later. But Ducky had been insistent; Gibbs was to go to his house no matter what time he got back.
Which was why at 1:00 a.m. Gibbs was standing outside Ducky's home trying to peer through the heavy curtains to see if any lights still shone.
Moments later the front door opened and Ducky stood lit by lights from the hall. "Well, are you planning on standing outside all night, Jethro? Or are you going to actually come in?"
Gibbs grinned and hurried up the porch steps and into Ducky's home. "Missed you, Duck," he said, pulling Ducky into his arms and holding him without looking over his shoulder for the first time in four months. "Got something tell you, ask you," he said, after he'd spent several minutes kissing Ducky.
"Have you now?" Ducky asked, tilting his head back a little.
"Yeah." Gibbs swallowed hard. "Duck, will you come and live with me?"
Ducky's eyes misted over and he smiled. "Yes, my dear," he said simply. "I will."
Gibbs felt extremely happy. "Or," he said. "I could move in here with you."
Ducky's smile deepened. Then he said, "Or we could find somewhere new, together."
But those were mere details; all that mattered was that Ducky had said yes.