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Stranger

by: taylorgibbs (Send Feedback)

Series: - No Series - #1
Chapters: 001 Word Count: 1077
Rating: TEEN
Character(s): Jethro Gibbs
Category(ies): Character Study, Episode Related
Pairing(s): - No Pairing -
Episode(s): 3-24 Hiatus (2)
Summary: The mysterious redhead is finally revealed! Written for the NavyNcisFF list challenge--Yankee White episode tag. First in the Julia Knows Best series.

Chapters: 1

Stranger

Gibbs slid into the passenger seat of the red convertible and kissed her cheek. She pulled away fully before glancing over her shoulder at the plane sitting on the tarmac. “Is this another one of those incidents that will make the news, Jethro?”

He gave her a slight shrug and waited until they were on the Beltway, wind whipping through their hair, to answer her. “Yeah, shots fired. I took care of it.”

“You…?” She glanced over in shock and he reached for the steering wheel.

“Drive, Julia. And yeah, I stopped what could have been a major international incident. Just my job.” He gave her a faint smile. “Have you and Rob to thank for me figuring it out.”

“How is that?” she asked, merging into traffic.

“You let Rob spend weekends with me just after Will deployed last year. That kid of yours is a movie buff. Made me watch Air Force One three times. That was the key.”

“Oh?” she asked, sending him a glance, comprehension dawning on her face. “Tell me more.”

He shrugged, suddenly uncomfortable with how long it had taken for him to put it all together. “Heard from him this week?”

“Which him? Your brother-in-law or your nephew.”

“Both,” Gibbs reached into the center console and snagged a cup of coffee, knowing it was just how he liked it. The bitter Jamaican blend coated his tongue and slid down smoothly. “How does Rob like Penn State?”

“Loves it so far. He’s talking about ROTC again, which I know you and my darling husband will talk him out of.”

“We will,” Gibbs agreed. “Julia, he’s my only nephew, your only kid. Will and I have both served in wars, your husband twice. Don’t want another one in the family in the line of fire.” What he didn’t say was that the family was small enough as it was.

She made a face as they merged into traffic banking up to cross the Wilson Bridge. “I know, Jethro. Trust me, I know. I never wanted Will in the line of fire again. I’m so scared of losing him…” She trailed off, hands clenching on the wheel. “Jethro, this family has lost enough. Kelly, Shannon…we almost lost you multiple times…”

“Not officially family any more,” he pointed out.

“Bull, Jethro. You married my baby sister. I don’t care how many wives were between then and now. You’re my brother in law and Will’s best friend and Rob’s godfather and uncle. You think any of us care how many Lindas and Dianes and Stephanies there are? There has always been you, Jethro. You and Shannon and Kelly. Our family.”

He winced, taking a long sip of coffee, and stared out into the Potomac. “I know, Julia.”

As they moved into stop and go traffic over the bridge, she squeezed his arm. “A lot about this case ticked you off, didn’t it? Want to talk about it?”

He smiled then around his coffee cup. “When do I ever want to talk, Julia? Same old same old. Terrorist nearly took our leader down. Turf wars with other agencies. Figured it out but not before someone else died. And the dirtbag got too damn close.” He blinked a couple of times, aware that she was making him talk. She was just like her sister that way.

“And someone with a hell of a career threw it away for a fling.”

“You fired DiNozzo? Jethro, don’t tell me that. You need him.”

He chuckled sadly, shaking his head. “Not DiNozzo. He did pretty well. Even got dumped out on the Beltway.”

Her head snapped up and he chuckled. “Hands on the wheel, Julia. Tell ya that story sometime. DiNozzo’s fine. Added someone to my team.” He smiled at the thought of Kate and her spunk. She’d work well on his team, would challenge him and Tony the way nobody had in a long time. Blackadder had been a nag rather than spunky, but if Special Agent Todd could get beyond her prissiness, she’d be a damned good addition.

“Oh?” She asked, and he knew she wanted to know about DiNozzo first.

“Yeah, he was impersonating a body.”

Julia gave him a small smile of her own. “You lead the most interesting life.”

Gibbs rolled his eyes. “We all can’t spend our time in offices, booking vacations and honeymoons for everyone.”

“M Street Travel is stronger than ever, Jethro.” He saw her smile fade. “It was always our shared dream, you know. Ever since we were kids. Shannon and I wanted to go to all these exotic locations…”

“And instead she married an enlisted marine and only went to Disneyland just before she was killed.” There was still a thread of bitterness in his voice for what they should have had. What he could have given his wife and daughter if some dirtbag hadn’t taken them away.

“Don’t do that,” Julia warned, her hand resting on his knee and squeezing gently. “You’re taking me out to dinner and you’ll tell me all about saving the President of the United States. You do mean him, right?” Her lips quirked upward in a smile. “Unless your director was on the flight as well. Then afterward, we’ll go back to your place and you’ll sand and I’ll do some reading and we’ll catch the eleven o’clock news together and see who takes control of this.”

She paused, angling a glance over at him. “She’s looking down on you and she is so proud. You know that, right? She always told me she got the boy and married the man. And Jethro, never doubt how happy she was with you.”

Julia spun off the beltway onto Route 1, heading toward Old Town, Alexandria and the myriad of restaurants down there and Gibbs just watched the scenery go by. “I know. You don’t have to keep reminding me, Julia.”

“Oh, but I do,” she said in a voice that trembled slightly with emotion. “It is what family does.”

His hand covered hers and they were quiet until they’d been seated at a brand new Italian restaurant, a bowl of crusty bread between them. “You’re a keeper, Jules.”

“I know, Jethro. Now tell me about the new agent. She’d better not be a redhead…”



Chapters: 1

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