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Instinct and Comfort
by: taylorgibbs (Send Feedback)
Series: - No Series - #1
Chapters: 001 Word Count: 986
Character(s): Jethro Gibbs, Tony DiNozzo
Category(ies): Angst/Drama, Episode Related, Hurt/Comfort
Summary: Gibbs grapples with what he suspects and the fallout of Lee's deception.
Author Notes: Spoilers for 6X07. Special thanks to Anna for the beta. fanfic 100 prompt "Storm".
Instinct and Comfort
Gibbs sat in the car for fifteen minutes before he screwed up the courage to lock up the car and enter the building. He’d never done this before, visiting DiNozzo when he needed comfort. Sure he’d been here to check up on his senior agent quite a few times, but never when he was the one who needed a shoulder. He probably could have gone to Ducky but that wouldn’t have been right. He wanted to be here. Whatever came of it.
He started to knock on the door but then just used his key and let himself in. What would he say to gain entry anyway? The apartment was dark and only then did he realize that it had passed midnight. As he sat at the bar, beating himself up over his gut and what he’d allowed to happen, hours had passed.
Jethro Gibbs hated being off balance. Jethro Gibbs hated being vulnerable. But most of all Jethro Gibbs hated knowing his failures had caused an agent to die. And Jethro Gibbs knew himself well enough to know that being alone tonight would cause him to be very self destructive.
He knew the apartment well, could measure the steps down the hallway and into the bedroom. The TV flickered but the gentle snores and snuffles told him its occupant was asleep. He settled slowly onto the edge of the bed, and restrained the arm that came up with gun in hand.
“Easy, DiNozzo. Just me. Gibbs.”
“Boss?” Tony sounded confused, sleepy.
Gibbs winced. He hadn’t meant to think of Tony like that. “Yeah. Just…” He sighed. He hated this vulnerability. “Figured something out today and don’t really want to be alone. Abbs is probably out clubbing and Duck lives too far away.”
“What is it?” Tony sat up, bare shoulders painted silvery in the moonlight. He did like to sleep nude, Gibbs remembered. How could he forget Tony versus the iguana in Gitmo.
Gibbs sighed heavily. “What have ya got to drink? This requires some lubrication.”
“You gonna be okay to drive home, Boss?” Tony’s look of concern warmed his heart.
“Not planning on going home.” Tony’s eyes widened and Gibbs wondered if he imagined the glimmer of hope in them. “You have a couch.” He was disappointed when that glimmer faded.
“C’mon, Tony, Lemme tell you a story about the time you were on the Reagan and then the Seahawk and how I screwed up.” Gibbs walked into the living room, allowing Tony some privacy. The other man came out of the bedroom dressed in boxers, his hair sticking up in all directions, and grabbed a bottle, placing it on the coffee table.
Telling the story wasn’t easy but Gibbs finally got it out around mouthfuls of some surprisingly good scotch. He confessed everything, his certainty that it was Lee involved, his unreasonable hope that Langer was somehow still alive. His guilt for blaming Langer. His fury that Lee had played them all. Vance not telling him when the team had been broken up in the first place. The fact that he’d read his gut so damn wrong.
All the while Tony sat there, clad only in boxers, nodding, even squeezing his forearm. Gibbs wasn’t used to being the one comforted, but he accepted this.
“So what happens now?” Tony asked after Gibbs lapsed into silence. He’d drunk more than his fair share of scotch and after drinking the bourbon earlier he was in a comfortable haze.
“Take her down, Tony. We find our opening and we cut her off at the knees. She isn’t gonna get away with this; Langer’s death isn’t in vain. Gonna make sure his name gets cleared. Least I can do.”
Tony shifted now, giving Gibbs an awkward but heartfelt hug. “You’re human, Boss. Even you make a mistake sometimes.”
“My mistake caused someone to die, DiNozzo. Member of my team.”
“And your instincts have caused all of us to be here now, Gibbs. Don’t blame yourself for this. You didn’t know.”
“Pacci, Cassidy, Kate, Langer, Jenny,” Gibbs counted each one off on his hand. “All dead because of my mistakes. Add in Bill Decker too, Tony. He died because I didn’t clean up a mess a long time ago. More than one hand. Maybe it’s time I hung it up before I lose anyone else.”
“No, Gibbs. We need you.” Tony knelt in front of him. “I need you.”
Gibbs stroked a hand through Tony’s hair, both aroused and strangely touched by his words. “Not like I need you, DiNozzo.”
“Oh?” Tony challenged softly. “How is that?” Gibbs knew Tony knew, though, his eyes flicking to Gibbs’ hard-on, clearly visible even through the loose fabric of his pants.
“Too buzzed for this conversation, DiNozzo. Get me to bed. Maybe we’ll talk later.” His eyes fluttered closed as Tony led him to the master bedroom and tugged back the covers on the opposite side of the bed to where Tony slept.
“Don’t know what you’re starting,” Gibbs mumbled. “Should sleep on the couch.”
“ You share the bed and maybe I do,” Tony replied, easing Gibbs back on the bed. He could have sworn Tony squeezed his cock lightly as he yanked his pants and shoes off. “But you’re right, we’ll talk later. When you’re sober. Get some sleep, Gibbs. I’ll be right here beside you, on your six. Whatever you need.”
He was nearly asleep when a gentle kiss was brushed over his head and a whispered, “I love you, you bastard.” reached his ears. A warm hand gently held his and though Gibbs knew he should pull away, he let sleep claim him in that position.
They had started something, but Gibbs and Tony would finish it. Together.
MTAC - NCIS Fic