Series: - No Series - #1
Chapters: 001 Word Count: 4581
Character(s): Jethro Gibbs, Caitlyn (Kate) Todd
Summary: A/U Gibbs and Kate get together.
Author Notes: Not mine....just borrow them for a little bit.
Thanks to Sarah, the owner of the 'love davenport,' my g-
ma, who calls couches davenports, and Claire, who helped
with the movie titles. Any and all mistakes are mine.
When I started at NCIS Gibbs scared the crap out of me, but I also found him attractive. There was just something about the way he carried himself. And not by any means did his closed – off – ness do anything for him, but being a profiler I could tell some event in his life had deeply wounded him. And then something happened. I’m not sure when it happened or what event set it off, but we started dating. It happened one month when: I had a near death experience; my father passed away; and Abbey and I had gone out of town, at Gibbs’ insistence to help get me back on track.
My near death experience and the death of my father coincided on the same day. My father, while I was growing up, was never sick, except for one week when I was like 10. None of the doctors could figure out what he had and he was tested for everything. After he recovered he tired more easily and was just all around different. His death was very sudden. You don’t expect to hear that your 57 year old father drops dead of a brain aneurism.
The day of his death I had this foreboding feeling and I just couldn’t shake it. We were working on a case where a lieutenant was murdered, at the time for the information that we had gathered there was no reason, in a parking lot. Gibbs had sent Tony and me to speak to the one and only witness, Marion Coteswoth-Haye. Marion had been hiding behind another car in the lot when she saw the murderer pull a gun. It seemed that some how our murder suspect had seen the witness, we’re still not sure how that happened, and went to her home to either threaten or kill her. The murderer was there when we arrived to speak with her. Due to my foreboding feeling I was not at top of my game, which is probably how he stuck up on me. Turns out the guy was hunting for Gibbs. Gibbs had put the guy’s sister, Jessie Andrews, away. She was smuggling in various goods from where ever she was stationed. She was only sentence to a couple of years and at the time her sentence was almost complete. Anyway, the guy grabbed me from behind and had he been carrying or not carrying another weapon I would have fought back, but when you have a gun barrel jammed at the base of your skull you tend not to fight back. Our guy, James Andrews, forces me in to a back room where he tied me to a chair. Shortly after he tied me up, he brought Marion back and tied her to the other chair in the room. The chairs were heavy enough and placed in such away that neither of us could help the other to untie our bindings. I don’t know what conspired after Andrews tied us up, but he ended up in the room with us; I could hear Gibbs trying to talk the guy down from his manic state. It obviously wasn’t working, so I tried talking to the guy; only to have him take shots at me. Gibbs must have just run through the door after hearing the shots. All the shots pointed at me missed, except for the last one; just before he pulled the trigger one last time Gibbs tackled him and the final bullet ended up hitting my arm. The bullet had gone straight through and amazingly enough had not hit bone. While I was at the hospital being treated Abby had brought the news of my father’s death. After consulting with my doctors and my own squeamishness, I decided to drive home. I know that the cabins of planes are pressurized, but there is something to be said about having a hole in your arm and going up thirty thousand feet.
Gibbs took it upon himself to take me. The Director must have given the whole team time to recover, because the whole way Gibbs never once grumbled about taking leave. And he actually drove like a normal person, at first it scared the crap outta me, but I got used to it. When we got to Indianapolis, it was late and he decided that he would stay in a motel about 3 miles from my parents’ home, even though he was offered a guest room in the house. He said that it was a time for family and that he didn’t want to intrude on that. He managed to keep himself busy for the first day and then in the late afternoon on the second day he showed up at my parents’ home. I was grateful. My mother and my father’s brothers were on day two of arguing where my father should be laid to rest. Not having a will or leaving written instructions on what to do, my mother thought that it would be best to bury him in the family cemetery, about two hours from where we were living. Which was not what my uncles thought should happen. They thought that he should be buried in town. When my father was 18 he moved from Leesburg to Indianapolis to go to school. My parents married young, in part due to the time period; my mother was pregnant with my oldest brother. My parents loved each other until the day my father passed. Shortly after my brother was born Uncle Curt came to live with them. He stayed about a year. And then, shortly before I was born until I was two, Uncle Mark lived with us; we’ve always lived in or just outside Indianapolis. These are the two whose argument about burying my father is that he moved out of Leesburg, he would want to be buried in Indianapolis. My mother, on the other hand along with my siblings and me, says that he should be buried with his parents and grandparents; she had already made all of the arrangements with the church. After my uncles moved out we didn’t really have the greatest of relationships with them, as you could tell by this asinine disagreement that’s been going on for two days. Gibbs asked if he could check my wound and I let him. It gave me time away from my family. After sitting in the quiet with Gibbs, even if it was only 15 minutes, and returning to the, then rather boisterous, argument I had had enough. I had simply stated that even though there were no written wishes, my parents were married for almost 40 years and that my mother would know best what my father would have wanted and if they didn’t like what I had to say then they could leave, because we were grieving the lose of my father and if they didn’t want to grieve with us then they could go. They shut up pretty quickly after that, but I think part of it was that Gibbs threatened them, under his breath, that if they agitated me enough to swing my arm around like I just had and pulled my stitches he would shoot them. After that there were no disagreements on what was to be done. We had the wake at a local funeral parlor 4 days after he passed and then traveled the two hours to the family church, where on the 5th day we buried my father. Most of the people that attended were family; very few people from the city came. Gibbs helped me pack a few things that belonged to my father that I wanted to bring back to DC. And after about 8 days with my family, whom I love dearly, Gibbs and I left before I shot them for driving my insane. My brothers tried to get me to quit. When they told me that my job was too dangerous, I calmly reminded them that I used to work for the President and that there was a good chance that I could have taken a bullet for him. Their counter argument: I wasn’t protecting that President anymore and that I was putting myself in danger for no reason. At that point I calmly walked over to my mother, kissed her cheek, gave her a hug, and told her I loved her; hugged each of my brothers, told them I loved them; and then picked up my purse and stated that I put my life on the line for each of my teammates and they put theirs on the line for me and walked out to Gibbs, who was loading my bags in the car. We didn’t really say much on the drive back. He had asked a few non-invasive questions about my uncles, which I answered to the best of my ability. I mean you can only blame so much on gene pools. Uncle Mark was found floating face down in a lake as a child; his craziness is blamed on the lack of oxygen from that incident since no one knows for sure how long he was down and Uncle Curt’s craziness does get blamed on bad genes. Thankfully it skipped my family; either that or my mother’s genes were more dominant.
I exiled myself to my apartment just to be alone. Like I said I love my family, but they can be a bit much. I didn’t answer my phone, check my e-mail, or attempt to contact anyone. Gibbs, however, stopped by everyday to check my wound. I think he was also worried when I wouldn’t answer my phone and to placate everyone at the office that was calling. On the third day Gibbs told me that Abby had made reservations for us to go to a spa and that I was to go. So two weeks after my father died I sat in a spa with Abby trying to relax and not think about going back to work on desk duty the following Monday.
The week I returned to work Tony kept looking at me like it was his fault I was shot. Gibbs got over that look while we were in Indiana. For the next few weeks while I was on deck duty, I became a top notch researcher and had little problem seeing the whole picture of the crime scene even though I wasn’t there.
Abbey wanted to celebrate my return to field work about 6 weeks after the shooting, so the whole team went out for dinner and drinks at a greasy spoon that Abby and I went to occasionally. Tony left first; he received a phone call from flavor of the moment and was gone. Ducky’s mother called so he left. Abby left sighting something about a test that she was running and the results should be done soon, she wanted to be there when it finished, and took McGee with her. Leaving me with Gibbs.
Gibbs and I sat a little longer and chatted about various topics. He asked how I was handling my father’s death and how my family was. At the time the only thing that was holding my mother together was my youngest brother. He was 19 at the time and still living at home. Gibbs brought me home and I had invited him in for coffee. I had been in the kitchen making the coffee when he started channel surfing when I heard the entr’acte to ‘To Sir, With Love’ and made him stop. He sat next to me and watched the entire movie. He left that evening stating that he had had fun at dinner and that the movie was nice, bid me good night and that he would see me tomorrow.
The following Friday, Tony had had a date and left by 6 having finished his paper work. I, on the other hand, had somehow fallen behind. It could have been that I had a physical therapy appointment earlier in the day, my last one thankfully. When Tony left it was just Gibbs and myself. After about an hour of work Gibbs asked if I would like to join him for a movie at his home and that we could get take – out if I wanted. I had agreed. Again, we sat and ate our dinner while watching Indiana Jones look for the Ark of the Covenant. At the end of the evening Gibbs told me that if I ever needed anyone to talk to, no matter the time, I could always go to him. I gave him a quick hug in thanks, said good night and left.
For a couple months we went on like this. Sometimes we would just go out to eat and other times we would sit at his or my home eating take-out and watching various movies. There were several times where one or the other enjoyed the movie more, but the other didn’t complain. Hugs were given when we bid our farewells. Eventually the hugs turned in to small pecks on the cheek, then over time to the lips.
About six months after Gibbs and I started our new dance Abby came to me and said that it had just hit her like a ton of bricks that Gibbs had been happy ‘if that’s what you could call it’ the last few months. He barked less, was more understanding when testing took longer than he thought it should, and tended not to abruptly hang up on people. Granted he wasn’t up to ‘Thank you, Good bye’ yet, but he had been using some form of ‘Good Bye’ prior to disconnecting. I hadn’t said much to Abby when she came to me with this, but gave a suggestion that maybe Gibbs was seeing someone. To which she stated that after wife #3 he said the he wasn’t going to date again. I had just shrugged and said that I had paperwork to complete. Two weeks after that conversation Abby approached me again, this time stating that I seemed to be doing well after the death of my father and that I seemed happier than she’d ever seen me. I’m not sure if she investigated why Gibbs was so happy or if she guessed, but the look she gave me told me that the cat was out of the bag and wasn’t going to be put back in. That night Gibbs called ‘just to hear your voice’, not that he didn’t hear it enough at work. I told him about Abby. He just kind of sighed in to the phone. I could tell that he too wanted to keep this to just ourselves. We had agreed to try and get Abby to back off before she spilled the beans to anyone else; so we invited her to movie night. We got pizza and rented Gladiator. Gibbs and I chatted; quietly cuddling on the ‘love davenport’ while we waited for Abby to show up. Once she arrived we ate and talked about everything, but the odd relationship that Gibbs and I were currently involved in.
Even after six months, of what the normal person would classify as ‘dating’, we didn’t sit around making out like teenagers with the heavy petting or jump into bed; we just enjoyed each other’s company. Don’t get me wrong there was a serious attraction between us; but between his previous marriages, which we discussed, and my somewhat bad luck at choosing boyfriends, which we also discussed; we decided to take it slow to see where it would take us. Neither of us was in a hurry. And it took a little bit of time to get to know who we each were outside of work, but it did happen and we still didn’t just jump into bed. Gibbs had said that he didn’t want to make the same mistakes that he had previously made and I had always rushed in to relationships and I didn’t want to make that mistake with Gibbs, which is where our joke about the ‘love davenport’ came in. Once night at Gibbs’ house we were sitting on his love seat cuddling and I had a joked it felt that we should have a chaperone present after watching some old western that he liked. He had laughed and gave me a gentle kiss. He then stated that as a teenager, when we would make – out with his girlfriends at home his mother told him that davenports weren’t made for activities of such. To which I asked about a love davenport and in response he stated that on a love davenport that it must be ok, because it had love in it and in his current years of experience it should only be done with people that you love. He then proceeded to give me a kiss that took my breath away. That was the first night he told me he loved me and I told him that I returned it. I confess we made-out some.
About half way through Gladiator Abby paused the movie and asked us what was going on and not that she didn’t love both of us, but she was concerned for each of us if it didn’t work out. To which we looked the other in the eye, for what could have been forever, then turned to Abby. Gibbs stated for the both of us, I nodded as he had said it that night to her and again when he said the same thing to Ducky and Tony, ‘We love each other. We both have our eye wide open and are aware of each other’s pasts’, to which Ducky looked surprised, ‘and because of that we are taking it slow.’ That statement seemed to nullify every argument they had. No one questioned if we knew what we were doing or stated anything about hurting the other. We continued our relationship as we had been.
There had been one particularly hard case that we got almost a year to date after I was shot. A petty officer and her daughter were killed in a car accident. Normally, our team doesn’t take cases like that, but we were to only team available that day. It turns out that the petty officer’s husband had sabotaged the car, because the petty officer was thinking about leaving him. He hadn’t planed on his child riding in the car. It was so sad and Gibbs didn’t take the news well when Tony had told him what had happened. The team had left it up to me to talk him out of ripping the husband limb from limb. During that case I found myself thinking a lot about how someone could do that to their family. I later found out that Gibbs was having similar thoughts, because the day we closed that case, which coincided with the anniversary of my being shot, he proposed. I said yes and that was the first night that we made love.
Approximately three months after we got engaged the director gave the team a week off. He said that we deserved it and that not one of us had taken leave in way too long so we were to make up for it by taking leave then. Gibbs and I had discussed what, when, and where for our wedding, but nothing seemed right. Don’t get me wrong I’ve dreamed of my wedding day since I was old enough to know what a wedding was, but sitting there with the love of my life trying to plan out what we wanted nothing seemed right. Before we all took our mandatory leave we got together for dinner that Friday. Gibbs spent the night at my place saying that he liked my mattress better; to me both his and mine felt the same, the only real difference was that mine was covered in 320 thread count sheets. Saturday morning we woke up and discussed what we should do for our vacation, neither one of us brought up planning the wedding; we could decide so we spend it unwinding. That meant both of us in Gibbs’ basement, him working on his boat and me reading a book. Monday I spent by myself cleaning my apartment and getting things done that I had put off until I had to time to do them like cleaning my carpet. Tuesday and Wednesday pretty much went the same way was Monday, except that Tuesday I helped clean Gibbs’ house. Very early Thursday morning, 4:30, my phone rang. To this day I’m not sure when he woke up and thought this or whether he even went to bed the previous night. Anyway, Gibbs tells me to get ready, because we are going to spend the day in Atlantic City and that at 7 that night Abby, Ducky, and Tony will be meeting us there for dinner. He was at my door 20 minutes after we hung up and drove us the three and a half hours to Atlantic City. We did some sight seeing and a little gambling, I didn’t do so well. About two hours before dinner he asked me if I wanted to go clothes shopping. That took me a little by surprise, because I know that he doesn’t like it and won’t go with me. I took him up on it anyway. After passing a shop that had dresses hanging in the window, Gibbs stopped and asked if I wanted to see if they also carried wedding dresses. I agreed to look, but gave him an incredulous look. Fifteen minutes after we walked in the door, he told me to find a nice dress for tonight and walked away. I found a coral colored dress that depending on how I wore my hair and what I used for accessories could be used for formal or casual functions. Not that we attend that many formal functions, but I figured I could use a dress of color since most of my other formals are black, because I was on duty for a function at the White House. Gibbs bought my dress and a new shirt and coat for himself. Still not adding 2+2, Gibbs got a call from Abby stating that she got a room to stay over and I needed to come to her hotel and give her fashion advice. Yeah, like I wouldn’t think that was weird, but I did it any way. Once there Abby made me call Gibbs, because just as we walked in to the lobby Ducky phoned him and didn’t make the trek to Abby’s room. When I called, he simply stated that ‘We are getting married tonight and I just bought you your wedding dress.’ I was flabbergasted; I didn’t know what to say. When I found my voice I asked if this was what he wanted, he then simply said that neither one of us was excited to plan a wedding and that the ceremony was more for our friends than for us. He then continued by saying that the marriage was more important to him than the actually ceremony and it had nothing to do with having done it three times already. He told me that if down the road I want some big church thing, which I wasn’t excited about anyway, we could reaffirm our vows. Abby helped me quickly get ready and then produced 2 pairs of my own shoes, one black and one white; I’m sure that Gibbs gave them to her. I chose the white ones, secured them to my feet and was pushed out into the hall only to then be dragged to the elevator by Abby.
Gibbs and I had gotten our marriage license and all that that in tales getting it a few weeks ago, because we had joked that we should just elope. I figured one weekend we would just hop a plane and go to Vegas.
When Abby and I arrive at the chapel Ducky met us in the lobby. At the time I was thinking thank you Lord for letting him choose a chapel that doesn’t have some sort of impersonator doing the ceremonies. Ducky asked if I was going to walk myself down the isle and I said yes, because I didn’t think that it was right that anyone, but my father do it and since he wasn’t here I would walk myself. The following minutes passed quickly, the celebrant said that if I was ready we could begin. I nodded. Entering the small sanctuary I immediately noticed that there were are more people there than that needed to be. Tony, Abby, and Ducky are standing on the side of the room where Gibbs was and on the other side stood my 3 brothers and my mother. I stopped where my mother was and gave her a hug. The ceremony lasted for about 15 minutes; at the end we asked my oldest brother and Ducky to sign our license as our witnesses. We posed for a few pictures and went off to dinner, another surprise Gibbs had planned.
At the dinner, I asked Gibbs how he knew I would say yes to getting married today. He said he didn’t. He was pretty sure that I was going to say no, because my family wasn’t there and if I had at the point he would have told me that my family was there too. I was glad we did it the way we did, all the important people in both of our lives were there to share it with us and there was no one there out of obligation.
We’ve been married now for 3 years and I still feel blessed to be loved by this man. I thank God everyday that Gibbs and I were open about everything at the beginning and took the pace that we did.
I was out most of the day with Abby and I was fully prepared to go back out to get dinner when I walked through the door. But there in the living room, TV softly playing in the background, sleeping on our ‘love davenport’ are my men. My husband has his head and feet propped up on both ends and our newest edition, at 6 weeks old, sleeping chest to chest with his daddy.
I gently kiss the back of my son’s head and place a soft kiss on my husband’s lips. Gibbs woke enough to return my kiss and very carefully made room for me to join them. Carefully sliding myself across his middle I lean in to my husband’s shoulder, where he wraps his arm around me and I place a hand, over lapping the hand that’s been holding him in place since the beginning of his nap, on my son’s back. I imagine that we look like one giant pretzel trying to fit two reclining adults on to a love seat without disturbing our little one. But I wouldn’t change a thing; it got us where we are today.