Series: - No Series - #1
Chapters: 001 Word Count: 2294
Character(s): Jethro Gibbs, Tony DiNozzo, Other Female Character
Category(ies): Character Study, Episode Related, Pre-Slash
Episode(s): 1-10 Left for Dead
Summary: Before things can continue, they have to start.
Author Notes: The first three are pre-series.
1. First Job Offer Without Applying.
Tony had told Kate he got his job because he smiled, but there had been a bit more to it than that. A little matter of a dead Marine, a jealous lover and a wrecked car. So, while it was the first time he'd ever gotten a job offer before he'd applied, he knew better than to think it was just because he smiled.
Judging from Gibbs' reaction, the smile probably hadn't hurt.
2. First Headslap.
Tony knew it was petty, but he couldn't help it. Blackadder was difficult to work with. She was wound so tightly he half expected her to explode just sitting at her desk. Tony having been hired right after the departure of St. Stan didn't help, either. So far, Tony had done his best to sit back, keep his mouth shut and scope out the personalities and relationships at his new job. So, maybe his best wasn't particularly good in that respect, but he did try. Gibbs was the only person he'd ever met from NCIS before he got there, so he'd expected to feel like he was joining the Marines rather than a law enforcement agency. Even after learning how unique the man was, the impression remained. He'd even contemplated treating it as an undercover assignment, but as much as he liked undercover (and knew he was damned good at it), he didn't feel right doing that to his coworkers. He might not ever show them all of the real Tony DiNozzo, but he could at least show them his usual work face, or at least something approaching it.
But two weeks into his new job and Blackadder was driving him crazy. She didn't flirt, she didn't like movies, she didn't like sports. In fact, she didn't seem to like anything except chasing terrorists. Chasing terrorists and reminding Tony that she used to work for the FBI while he was a three-time copshop retread. The worst, though, was that, so far, Gibbs always sided with her ideas over Tony's… even though Tony's often turned out to be right in the end.
It was starting to piss him off.
Gibbs had gone out of his way to steal Tony from Baltimore only to… ignore him. Tony didn't like being ignored. He liked, no he needed attention, especially when he was right. So when he stumbled on information that led him to believe Petty Officer Morrison was diverting Navy funds to an offshore account, his report to Gibbs was almost gleeful, but he restrained himself as much as possible. Tony knew he was right, but didn't think his no-nonsense boss would appreciate end zone show boating. (In his mind he spiked the ball, kissed all the cheerleaders and threw his helmet into the air.) He'd shine, but do it quietly. For once.
Blackadder didn't agree with Tony's interpretation of the evidence.
Gibbs looked at Tony as if waiting for something and the light went on for Tony. While it had been nice to, essentially, have been headhunted for his position at NCIS, he hadn't realized how much he'd always benefited from going through the usual hiring process in the past. He usually knew more going in to a job than just that the boss was a bastard.
"Boss! We can spend weeks trying to track down accounts in this country that don't exist or we can accept that Morrison's stashed the cash in Barbados and grab him before he decides to join it." Tony wanted to remove the smirk from Blackadder's face, but not nearly as much as he wanted approval from Gibbs. He was starting to think leaving Baltimore had been a very bad idea.
"Oh, come on, Tony. What could you possibly know about offshore banking?" Blackadder sounded almost bored.
"Well, Viv," she'd warned him off that particular nickname the day they met, "you'd be surprised at what you can pick up outside of the hallowed halls of the FBI."
"I didn't realize ESPN carried tax shelter news as well."
Tony knew it was at least partly his own fault. He was used to downplaying his intelligence and rather esoteric body of knowledge. Police departments tended to be hives of good old boys who appreciated a guy who read Sports Illustrated more than one who read The Economist (he never claimed to understand all of it, but it was the one Christmas present from his father that he appreciated enough to actually use).
"Enough! One more word from either of you that's not directly related to this case and you're fired." Gibbs looked more pissed off than Tony had ever seen him. "DiNozzo, what makes you think Morrison's moved the money?"
Tony just stared for a moment. This was the first time Gibbs had ever addressed his ideas before Blackadder's.
Tony went through his report by rote. It was actually fairly simple, if you knew what to look for. He hadn't spent all those years snooping in his father's office without learning something. There was a very good reason why his parents cut him off from the family money.
Tony concentrated on Gibbs, but spared the occasional glance at his other teammate. He forced himself to contain his utter joy at the look on her face at his flawless explanation of what their petty office was up to. There were still a few holes, but they were minor and easily checked.
When he finished he waited, grinning, hoping that this was the time when Gibbs would run with his theory first.
"Blackadder, get your gear. Let's go get our petty officer." Gibbs pulled his weapon and badge out of his desk as he spoke. "DiNozzo, fill in those missing pieces. I want them when we get back." Gibbs rounded his desk and slapped the back of DiNozzo's head as he passed him, making Tony yelp. "I didn't hire you because you're a nice guy. I hired you because you're not afraid to speak your mind and you know what you're doing. Stop letting her walk all over you, DiNozzo. You're better than that."
Tony watched his team get on the elevator without him. He rubbed the back of his head and slowly started to grin again. It wasn't quite the "good job" he'd hoped for, but Tony decided he could live with it. Besides, he'd've put up with more than a head slap to finally put one over on Blackadder. The advice and praise from Gibbs was just a nice bonus.
Now, if he could just get Abby to stop glowering at him.
3. First time Tony bet his life on Gibbs' actions.
The moment Tony ran into the alley behind Corporal Reyes, he knew he was in trouble. Gibbs was going to kill him, if Reyes and the three gang bangers waiting there didn't do it first. Tony identified himself and raised his Sig only to be met by a .45, three MAC 10s and four deadly smirks.
Smart move, Anthony. Not going to talk your way out of this one.
"Well, gentlemen, nice weapons, by the way, you seem to be at a slight disadvantage." Tony wondered how many "Hail Marys" his last priest would have given him for that lie. Reyes and his buddies at least thought it was funny. Tony laughed with them. "Yeah, you see, I kinda broke protocol by running in here ahead of my partner. She's right behind me, by the way, but that's not the problem." Let them underestimate Vivan when she showed up. That alone would get at least two of them shot. "No, see, our boss is right behind you," Tony wasn't certain where Gibbs was, but he knew what he'd do in Gibbs' place. Tony bet Gibbs would show up before Tony became a target practice dummy, "and he's so pissed off at me right now, he'll happily go through you just so he can give me hell." Tony figured he'd be lucky to only wind up on Ducky's table before the end of the day.
The dirtbags laughed at him, and Tony laughed back. They had no idea.
"I'd listen to him." Gibbs' voice rang through the alley and Tony's grin just got wider at the expressions on the suspects' faces. Vivan pounded into the alley behind Tony at that moment and Reyes dropped his weapon and raised his hands.
"Told you so." It only took a few minutes to collect the weapons and get the suspects secured.
"DiNozzo, do you have a death wish I don't know about?"
Oh, yeah, he was toast, but it was no more than he expected from Gibbs.
Tony wouldn't have it any other way.
4. The First Time Gibbs Offered Tony a Place to Stay
This was a disaster waiting to happen. Tony knew it. He figured Gibbs knew it, too. But it really was the best solution. Until Tony's landlord took care of the sewage problem, the city refused to let any of the residents stay in the building. He could move, but they were in the middle of a hot case, so it just made sense to stay with Gibbs for the duration.
It wasn't that Tony didn't want to stay with Gibbs.
It was that he wanted it just a little too much.
Rule 12 aside, Tony had his own set of rules and they said, in large black letters, DO NOT FALL FOR YOUR MALE BOSS. Really, it never ends well.
Rhode Island Military Academy (not his boss, but his advisor, which came to about the same thing and resulted in the rule in question).
Ohio State. (RAs think they're the boss. Damn, he was gorgeous, too.)
Peoria. (Okay, not his boss, but it wasn't pretty, even if the sex was great.)
Philadelphia. (The less said about that, the better.)
Baltimore. (Officially, he didn't fall for anyone from Baltimore, but that's where he met Gibbs and that had to count for something.)
Two weeks. Tony spent two weeks doing whatever he could to deflect Gibbs' attention from the fact that Tony wanted nothing more than to crawl into bed with him and go "Woof". The worst of it was that he started to get the idea that Gibbs knew.
It would be little things like offering to go running with Tony, when Tony was going running to get away from temptation. Or "suggesting" Tony join him in the basement to work on that godforsaken boat.
Who knew sawdust could be an aphrodisiac?
And would it have killed the man to take the damned power sander off Tony's hands?
There were also those almost-smiles just as Gibbs turned away to do something that would show off his biceps.
The more Gibbs subtly displayed and preened, the more nervous and clumsy Tony got. He broke five glasses, three coffee cups and smashed his thumb trying to fix the basement step he broke when he nearly fell down the stairs.
The Great Dinner Disaster need never be spoken of again.
Maybe it wasn't so subtle, but honestly. Gibbs? Thrice divorced lover of curvaceous redheads Gibbs? Maybe this is how he always behaved at home. Tony knew how to read his boss. He knew how to read his very sexy boss and only react to the boss part. He had no clue how to behave with off-the-clock-in-his-own-space Gibbs who seemed determined to kill Tony by drowning him in testosterone while taunting him with that hard sweaty body.
For the first time in a long time, Tony was seriously confused. He felt like he'd found a home at NCIS. Maybe he just finally felt completely secure in his skills and experience. Maybe it was the people he worked with and how well they complimented (and happily insulted) each other. Maybe it was working for the man who was casually stripping on his way out of the basement and to the shower. Whatever the reason, the last thing Tony wanted to do was risk losing what he finally had; a place where he felt he belonged.
No matter how badly he wanted to taste the sweat running down Gibbs' neck.
He just hoped he never regretted it, but he feared he already did.
5. The First Time Gibbs Broke Rule 12 for Tony.
Walking away from Kate, Gibbs asked him, "Have you ever made a mistake, Tony?"
At first, Tony thought they were talking about Kate, but given that Tony was once again looking for a place to camp out until the boiler in his building was back, Tony wondered.
"According to you or me?" Tony responded. The king of deflection strikes again.
"You." Shot down by the Marines.
"Yeah." Deflection was one thing, but he wouldn't lie to this man.
"Could anyone make you feel better?" Talk about a loaded question. No matter how many cheerleaders, yoga instructors or flight attendants he'd dated in the past six months, he couldn't get the sound of sandpaper on wood or the smell of sawdust out of his sexual fantasies.
"No." What's the use? Tony was tired of playing the game and he needed to know where he stood now.
"My door’s unlocked." Gibbs kept walking away from him, but he threw that life line. The only question was if Tony would choose to grab it.
"I know." Hell yes! Tony may not be as tech savvy as McGee or have quite the high moral standards Kate had, but he wasn't stupid. Gibbs didn't give many second chances and one thing Tony had in abundance was curiosity.
He wondered how hard it would be to get Gibbs to decide to work on the boat when he got there. Tony just hoped there was a lot of sanding left to do.