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Help, I Need Somebody

by: BuffyAngel68 (Send Feedback)

Series: - No Series - #1
Chapters: 041 Word Count: 76064
Rating: MATURE
Warning(s): Disturbing Imagery or Content, Other (See Author's Note)
Character(s): Jethro Gibbs, Tony DiNozzo, Abby Sciuto, Timothy McGee, Ensemble
Category(ies): Alternate Universe, Angst/Drama, Episode Related, Friendship, Hurt/Comfort, Romance
Pairing(s): Gibbs/DiNozzo, Abby/McGee
Episode(s): 3-12 Boxed In
Summary: My version of where Tony might have ended up after the crappy treatment he received in Boxed In. This is a bit dark, but I have to go with the muse and this is what she provided. The thought woke me up crying, as a matter of fact. Triple Kleenex warning...

Chapters: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41

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Help, I Need Somebody 37/?


"Jethro, I say again you look positively dreadful. Go home." Ducky

Gibbs sipped cautiously at a glass of tomato juice and Tabasco sauce, grimaced and rubbed his temple.

"I'll be fine once I get this down. Go on... eat your breakfast."

"If you insist. Just be glad I was amenable to your choice of venue this morning instead of dragging you to my preferable eatery."

"Which would've been..."

"Traditional Scottish fare. I'm sure you couldn't have dealt with those who order haggis for their morning repast."

Gibbs looked away and struggled against the indignity of covering his mouth.

"Ducky, for God's sake..."

"Mmm. Apologies for the lack of tact, but you can't deny that you deserve *some* sort of penalty for drinking into the wee hours instead of coming to us and making use of the basement."

I didn't feel like breaking things. It wasn't that bad...."

"No? You're considering backing away from whatever promises you made to Anthony yesterday. That's very bad."

Gibbs looked at his friend sharply.

"You're wrong."

"Please, Jethro." Ducky responded, exasperation written clearly on his face. "You act as if we've just met! I was there when you first began to grieve for Shannon and Kelly and I've watched you cut and run from every serious commitment you've made since. I know, better than anyone else in your life, how much it cost you to say whatever you said to Tony... and how much those words are now haunting you and frightening you."

Gibbs dropped his eyes to the tablecloth and took another brief pull on the anti-hangover concoction in front of him.

"I want it... want something with him. It's just... I look at him and then I look in a mirror... and I can't see what I have to offer him. He's so damn young..."

"Chronologically, perhaps. This last year, however, has stripped a great deal from Tony. His illness, Katelyn's death... he's had to grow up quite a lot in a very short time."

"I know. He made me so proud with how he handled it all."

"Ah. So that's it."


"You feel that not seeing how close he was to falling down makes you unworthy of him."

"No. You're way off."

"Of course. Well, as Mr. Palmer stated so succinctly, none of us recognized what was going on with Tony. So, according to your theory, we are all undeserving and should all now abandon the poor boy in order that he might find a better family... perhaps a psychic one who can read and instantly respond to his every emotional fluctuation."

Gibbs managed a severe glare, but only for a few moments.

"Sarcasm is really, *really* bad for a hangover, Duck."

"True, but a small increase in your headache is well worth it if my point was driven home."


"When the need arises, absolutely. Now get the rest of that evil brew inside you and be quiet for a few minutes. If you're looking for something to ease your pain, that should do the job."

Gibbs grunted, his face dark and brow furrowed, but he followed Ducky's advice. Thirty minutes later, the older man was finished, the bill paid and both men rose to leave. As they approached their respective cars, another drew up to the curb. To Gibbs' surprise, Abby spilled out of one side with her typical boundless energy and Tim emerged more sedately from the other side. Ducky greeted them both with a bright smile.

"Right on time, you two. It's so good to see you happy again, Abigail. I must admit I was terribly worried about yesterday..."

"Me too, Ducky." She confessed as she embraced him gently. "You ready to go?"

"I am, indeed."

"What's going on, Duck?" Gibbs asked.

"Oh, Timothy called just after you did this morning. He invited me to join them for a long relaxing drive in the country and then a bit of horseback riding. It sounded like just the thing."

"Yeah... yeah, it does."

Abby grinned and laid an easy hand on Jethro's arm.

"We'll do another trip later... just you me and Timmy. Some fishing, hiking maybe. You've got way higher priorities today. You've gotta go get Tony."

"I'll take care of him, Abs. I promise."

"I know you will." She whispered, hugging Gibbs far more fiercely than she had dared to with Ducky and whispering in her ersatz father's ear. "Bring him home, Papa. Bring him home..."

Jethro felt his heart twist, but he held the reaction deep inside, knowing she wouldn't understand. As she and Tim headed back to the car, Ducky, able to see subtleties of emotion in Gibbs that others would never guess at, spoke quietly.

"What did she say?"

"She... she called me Papa. I haven't heard that in so long. And she sounded just like..."

"Ah. I really don't think Kelly would mind, you know. In fact... I think she'd heartily approve." The ME responded, pulling a CD jewel case from his pocket. "Here. Listen to this in the car."

"What is it?"

"A song of encouragement for you. I anticipated your fear and your past trying to overwhelm you. Just trust me, my friend... this will help." He said cryptically then strolled away and slid into his own vehicle, preparing to follow the young couple over to Tim's apartment building, where he would safely park his car and join them in Abby's for the day.

Gibbs silently watched the cars pull away, his gaze moving between the diminishing forms and the case in his hand. Finally, he got into the driver's seat, turned the key to the accessory setting and pushed the disk into the slot. As the first verse began to flow from the speakers, he flushed and caught himself reaching out to stop the song from playing. Instead, he curled the hand into a fist and forced himself to listen to the rest.

* ... You can run but you cannot hide
This is widely known.
And what you plan to do with your foolish pride
When you're all by yourself alone?
Once you tell somebody the way that you feel
You can feel it beginning to ease
I think it's true what they say about the squeaky wheel
Always getting the grease.

Better to shower the people you love with love
Show them the way that you feel
Things are gonna be just fine if you only will
Shower the people you love with love
Show them the way that you feel
Things are gonna be much better if you only will... *



Leaning back on his bed, once again dressed in the sweatshirt, jeans and sneakers in which he'd arrived at the hospital, Tony sighed and laid a hand across his stomach.


"Yeah. I'm surprised I recognize the condition. It's not a normal state for me."

"It looks good on you. You look satisfied... and happy."

"Of course I do. I'm not thinking about what's about to happen."

"Big day."

Tony nodded, rising and moving to the door, which for once had been left open. Laying a shaking hand on the frame, he responded softly.


Lewiston joined him, staying back a foot or two to give Tony space.

"You've done all the work you needed to do for now, Tony. I swear, you're ready to go home.

Tony produced a dour chuckle and looked back at his doctor.

"God, you always sound so damn sure of how strong and capable I am. All that certainty gets a little irritating, you know?"

"I'll work on it." Lewiston told him, laughing. "I'm not the only one who believes in you. You heard that yesterday."

Tony now turned around completely to face the other man, his expression curious and guardedly hopeful.

"You believed them? You think they were really being honest and not just... I don't know, saying what they thought you expected to hear?"

"They were completely truthful."

"Family that might actually give a damn... it's just such an alien concept to try and get my head around."

"I know. We'll keep talking through that and everything else in our weekly sessions. For now, we better wrap up. Your ride will be here soon. Anything else you want to ask?"

"Will you answer me?"

"If I possibly can."

"What would your song have been?"

"Wow... I didn't see that coming. Let me think a minute..."

The silence spooled out for a long stretch of seconds before the right choice suddenly struck Lewiston. "Okay. I think, if I had to choose... it'd be Mariah Carey's ' Hero'. After what I've seen in you these last two weeks... the courage, the strength, the willingness to try and to slog through some really tough issues... that song pretty much says it all. I truly believe you're a hero, Tony. Like the song says, you just have to look inside and not be afraid to see the truth."

"Hmmph. You're pretty cool yourself, doc. I'm, uh... I consider myself damn lucky you were the one on call when I stumbled in here that night."

Lewiston, his throat too tight to enable an immediate response, simply swallowed and ducked his head to hide the flush rising in his cheeks. He was immensely grateful a few minutes later when Gibbs entry at the far end of the corridor provided a convenient distraction and a new topic of conversation.

"Jethro's here."

Abruptly, Tony tensed and backed away a few steps. "Tony?"

"I'm okay... I will be. Gimme a minute."

"No problem. Breathe slowly... try to relax. We talked about this, remember? You feel safe here, so it's normal to get a little scared about facing the world again..."

"Not scared, terrified. Everything that shoved me to the edge of a cliff is out there."

"So are the people who will keep you from ever facing a moment like that again. You just have to let them in... let them be there for you."

Eyes squeezed shut, Tony chuckled brokenly and blindly reached out a hand. Which was firmly grasped.

"No trying to fight the war all by myself."

"That's right. You're not alone anymore, Tony. I swear, eventually I'll help you see that leaning on other people isn't shameful. Even falling on your ass isn't so bad knowing that when you look up there'll be five pairs of hands waiting to pull you back up on your feet."

"I'm trying... I am. Faith just doesn't appear because I want it to."

"I know." A new voice agreed from the doorway. Tony's eyes popped open abruptly and when he realized the speaker was Jethro, the younger man took another step back. "Looks like I'm a little early."

"No, Jethro. You're fine." Lewiston reassured him. "We're just dealing with some going home jitters."

"How... how much did you hear?" Tony asked tightly, fighting to calm his nerves.

"The part about letting us be there. And you not trying to fight all alone anymore. Kind of ironic... that goes with the present I bought you."

Tony's expression lightened and his gaze swiftly searched Gibbs body.

"Present? Where?"

"In the car. They wouldn't let me bring it in, so you'll have to go to it."

"Yeah. I, uh... I have a problem getting out of the room. It's..."

"... not easy. I get that."

"You do. I can see it... in your eyes."

"I'll tell you the story someday. For now... yeah, I think maybe I can help. Can I..." he asked, gesturing into the room.

"Of course." Lewiston readily acceded, eager to see what Jethro had in mind. Gibbs strode up to Tony, gently claimed the hand the doctor had been holding then enfolded the other as well.

"Okay. Close your eyes again, Tony... and think back to a couple Christmases ago when you and Abby talked me into that Claymation DVD marathon."

"Between her collection and mine I think we have every one that exists." Tony commented, grinning

"I wouldn't bet against it. I'm thinking about the one with Mickey Rooney and Keenan Wynn... the one about the origin of Kris Kringle?"

"Man, that's my second favorite."

"Behind Rudolph, I know."

Lewiston produced a deep, comprehending hum as something clicked into place for him.

"That makes so much sense..."

Gibbs' eyebrow shot up, but he respected the confidentiality issue and didn't ask, turning back to Tony.

"That song that Kringle sings to help the wizard learn to walk again..."

"You've gotta be kidding, Gibbs."

"If it doesn't work we try something else."

"God... okay. Do I *have* to sing?"

"Not unless you want the doc to know how good you are."

"What? How the hell do you..."

"Later. You don't even have to say the words. Just think about the song. When you're ready, you let me know and we'll do it just like they did."

After a few tense moments, Tony nodded. Gibbs tugged gently and Tony took a single step forward, echoed by Jethro moving back the same distance. To his surprise, Tony was actually murmuring the words to the song under his breath.

" 'Put one foot in front of the other... and soon you'll be walking out the door..."

Slowly, one halting step at a time, the two men engaged in a strange, but somehow captivating dance that gradually took Tony over the threshold and out into the corridor.

"Open your eyes, Tony. You did it."

"I did? Hey... I did. Thanks." He responded softly, staring at Gibbs as if something significant had suddenly changed about the older man.

"Abby needs you home."

"Abby. Right."

Lewiston joined the pair just then, holding out Bert.

"Don't forget your buddy. Little sis would never forgive you."

"Yeah, I'd get smacked for sure." Tony replied, reaching out to take the toy. "You'll call so we can set up an appointment schedule?"

"I will."

"I should say something... but you know, right?"

"I know. Go get your present."

"Yeah. C'mon, Gibbs."

The pair walked away slowly. Lewiston grinned as he watched them go, wondering if Tony was aware he was still tightly clutching one of Jethro's hands.



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