Because Life’s Too Short

by Juli

July 2005


Inspiration Quote: “Life’s like an hourglass glued to the table.” (Anna Nalick)

Contrary to popular belief, even Gibbs was occasionally appalled by something that came out of his mouth. His flippant response to Tony’s confession that he’d liked Jeffery White was a perfect example.

Jethro never liked sending an agent undercover, preferring to take that risk on himself whenever possible. He liked even less sending Tony, a man who disliked himself so much that it was far too easy for him to lose himself in a persona. When they’d lost contact with DiNozzo, Gibbs had immediately gone into high gear, hell bent on getting his agent back. When they’d realized that mild-mannered Jeffery was in fact a serial killer, Gibbs had almost come out of his skin. He would have liked to think that he would have reacted that way to any of his agents being in trouble. That wasn’t entirely true, however. It was Tony in danger and that made the situation all that more unpalatable.

Those few moments it had taken Gibbs to cross the parking lot had been among the longest he’d ever known, filled with scenes that flashed across his mind even as he crept across the pavement. As he’d cautiously approached the car, Jethro had noticed the blood-spattered windows. His relief at realizing it was White’s blood and not DiNozzo’s had been profound. So much so, in fact, that when Tony had lifted shell-shocked eyes to his and made the surprising comment about liking Jeffery, Gibbs had uttered the first thing that came to mind.

It had been the wrong thing to say.

Jethro watched as Tony’s expression shifted to a professional facade, hiding his vulnerability from view. He kicked himself. Tony usually wore a mask, often the immature ex-jock one that drove Kate insane or the more charming one that put witnesses and suspects alike at ease. It was rare that Gibbs got to see the real Tony and, after that dumb-ass comment of his, he’d be lucky to ever get a chance again.

That wasn’t acceptable.

Gibbs stepped back and let Kate fuss over Tony. Not that it looked like fussing to the untrained eye. If someone wasn’t familiar with the relationship that the two had, they would mistake what Kate was doing as berating the other agent and Tony’s reaction as giving it right back at her. In fact, Kate was showing Tony how relieved she was that he was okay and he was letting her know that he appreciated it.

“But a shiatsu, Tony?” Kate asked in exasperation. “A small, yippy dog?”

“Don’t forget irritating,” DiNozzo reminded her.

“Well, you’re just lucky it wasn’t me describing you as a dog,” the female agent countered. “I would have told that guy to look for the biggest hound dog he could imagine.”

Gibbs was jealous of Kate, wishing that he could express his feelings for Tony so clearly.

Leroy Jethro Gibbs wasn’t a man normally prone to introspection, but during the long ride back to the office, he found himself thinking hard. Those scenes that had flashed across his mind as he’d approached the bloody car had been of Tony. Of the younger agent’s brilliant smile. The way Tony believed in Gibbs, always and utterly. Those few glimpses he’d caught of a man who was both deeper and more insecure than he wanted anyone realizing.

The introspection left off and the imagining began. It was all too easy to visualize what would have happened if Tony’s reflexes hadn’t been so good. The thought of DiNozzo dying because of a slit throat was unbearable, as was the thought of going on without him. Gibbs might swat Tony on the back of the head or grumble at him for not staying on task, but the fact of the matter was, DiNozzo brought much-needed light to Jethro’s life.

It was time for him to admit it.

Gibbs had been keeping Tony at arms length. His reasons had always seemed good enough before, but now Jethro wasn’t so certain. True, relationships between agents could be problematic, but Tony was nearly as stubborn as he was. Surely, if he and DiNozzo put their heads together, they could figure out a way to make it work. That Tony wanted it to work was obvious, it wasn’t just circumstance that made him drop his mask and let Jethro see how bad he was hurting. And how had Gibbs reacted? With a superficial comment that had completely dismissed the import of what Tony was trying to tell him.

Jethro knew what was holding him back, fear. That was a hard thing for a Marine to swallow. Before, he’d been successful in convincing himself that it was Rule #12, his self-imposed decree about not getting involved with another agent, that was holding him back. His knee-jerk reaction to seeing that vulnerability in Tony’s eyes tore that illusion to shreds. The truth was that he cared for Tony and that scared the crap out of him, so much so that he’d reacted with flippancy to disguise his dismay.

The Jeffery White case had done more than force Jethro to face the truth, though. It also served as a warning. That parking lot and not knowing if the blood on the car windows was Tony’s or not had served as a wake-up call. Tony’s life had flashed through Jethro’s eyes and it had disturbed Gibbs to realize that he himself was only a part of it through observation. That wasn’t enough anymore. Rule #12 wasn’t enough of an excuse anymore, nor was his own cowardice.

Life was too short and Gibbs had already lived too much of it without Tony. That had to stop. If, years down the road, Jethro was going to regret anything about his life as it came to a close, it wasn’t going to be that he’d let Tony DiNozzo slip through his fingers. There simply wasn’t time to play it safe anymore. Gibbs had had a glimpse of what a future without Tony was like and he’d be damned if he’d let it happen.

By the time they’d reached NCIS headquarters, Gibbs was through with thinking and ready to act. He’d wasted enough time already.

“Kate, you type up the preliminary reports,” Gibbs ordered as they entered the building. “And see if McGee had a heart attack or anything. If he’s not hyperventilating, he’s to call that damn busybody Deputy Secretary of State with an update.”

“Will do,” she nodded, giving Tony one last concerned look. Kate had tried to engage the other agent in conversation on the way back to the office, but Tony had been unusually quiet.

“Where do you think you’re going?” Gibbs barked as DiNozzo made to follow her.

Tony looked exhausted as he turned to face the older man. “I thought you’d want my report right away, Boss.”

“Think again,” Jethro responded. He grabbed Tony by the arm and manhandled him to the elevators. “First, you see Ducky.”

DiNozzo had gotten a quick exam by the paramedics, but had declined to go to the hospital. At the time, Gibbs had allowed him that choice, but had since learned more about what had gone on with Tony during the time he’d been in Jeffery’s company. In particular, Jethro was eager to find out what was in that concoction White’s partner had all but forced Tony to drink.

Tony was silent on the elevators. He leaned back against the wall and closed his eyes. The position stretched his neck out and made the small nick in his skin start to bleed again. Gibbs stared at a droplet of blood as it snaked its way down Tony’s neck and disappeared into the stained fabric of his shirt. Gibbs swallowed when he thought of how lucky Tony had been. There could have been more blood than that, if Tony hadn’t acted so quickly. A lot more.

“You did good on this one,” Jethro stated quietly. He didn’t say that often enough, particularly where Tony was concerned.

DiNozzo, even as tired as he was, popped his eyes open in surprise. “I did?”

“You kept yourself alive, managed to leave clues that enabled us to follow you, and allowed us to retrieve valuable artifacts. Not to mention, your work helped your country avoid the nasty political controversy that would have happened if those antiquities had not been recovered.” Gibbs allowed himself a small smile. “You did damn good.”

The doors opened and Jethro gently propelled Tony out. The younger man still looked halfway in shock, but whether that was because of White’s death or Jethro’s statement that he’d done well was uncertain. In either case, Tony didn’t complain too much as Ducky started puttering around him. DiNozzo was poked and prodded, as well as blood being drawn, all while Ducky told a rather mixed-up tale of an undercover operation he’d heard of that involved a tap dancer, an ostrich farm, and an unfortunate encounter with a beehive.

Gibbs shook himself when he realized he’d actually been listening. Maybe Tony wasn’t the only exhausted one. “What’s the verdict, Duck? Will he live?”

“Oh, yes, there’s no question of that,” the medical examiner responded. He patted Tony’s knee fondly. “Anthony’s dehydrated, exhausted and could use a hot meal, but other than being a little battered, he’s essentially fine.” Ducky held up a vial of blood. “I shall have Mr. Palmer take this down to Abby and ask her to check for drugs and the like, but I’m not terribly concerned.”

“But he probably should go home, get some rest,” Gibbs suggested. “Have someone with him, just in case.”

“Well, no, actually, I don’t think that’s necess – ow.” Ducky glared at Gibbs and stepped back, getting his toes out of Jethro’s reach.

Tony frowned. “Ducky, you okay?”

“I’m fine, my boy,” Ducky reassured him. “But I don’t know what I was thinking. It would be a splendid idea for you to have someone with you, just until we get your blood work back.” He slid a sly glance at Gibbs. “Jethro, do you have anyone available to stay with young Anthony?”

Gibbs felt his lips twitch. “I think I might be able to find somebody.”

“Good, good,” Ducky responded. “I shall call when Abigail is able to run those tests of hers. In the meantime, Tony, I recommend you seek your bed and try not to do anything too strenuous for the next day or so.”

This last comment was made with a pointed glance in Gibbs’ direction. Jethro chose to ignore it.

“Come on, DiNozzo, I’ll drive you home. Make sure you’re okay.”

“All right.”

Tony was perfectly docile as Gibbs led him out to the car. Jethro didn’t find the younger agent’s cooperation overly comforting. Tony was rarely so quiet and, when he was, it was never a good sign. Jethro kept sneaking glances at him as he drove. Tony was sitting with his eyes closed, head resting against the window. The sight relaxed Gibbs somewhat; after what had happened with Jeffrey in a car just a few short hours ago, it was a good sign that DiNozzo was able to let his guard down so quickly.

Gibbs pulled up in front of Tony’s apartment complex. “We’re here, DiNozzo.”

The older agent undid his seat belt and made to open his car door, but a hand on his other arm stopped him. He looked over to find Tony wide awake and giving him an assessing look. “What?”

“You stepped on Ducky’s foot,” DiNozzo stated. “He was going to say that I didn’t need anybody with me and you made him change his mind.”

Jethro looked away from that uncharacteristically penetrating gaze. “I didn’t agree with his medical assessment.”

One of Tony’s eyebrows went up in obvious skepticism. “You? Not trusting Ducky’s opinion as a doctor? Try again, Jethro.”

To the best of his knowledge, that was the first time Tony had used Gibbs’ first name to his face. It was a not-so-subtle indication that something fundamental had changed between them and, for the first time, Jethro began to wonder if he was the only one who had recently had an epiphany.

That thought gave him the courage to reach out and cup Tony’s face with one hand. “I almost lost you today and it made me realize that I hadn’t even had you, not in any way that counts. Life’s too short and unlike those damn movies of yours, there’s no rewind button.”

A slow, lazy grin blossomed over Tony’s face, wiping away the pinch of exhaustion that had been there before. “Well, technically, Boss, there’s no rewind button on a DVD. You see, there’s no actual tape to rewind. It’s more of a replay function than a- umph.”

Gibbs had stopped the flow of words the way he’d always wanted to, with a kiss. It was meant to be a quick kiss, more of a way to get Tony’s attention than anything else, sort of an alternative to a slap in the back of the head. Jethro hadn’t counted on the lick of heat that radiated up from his groin the moment his lips met Tony’s; nor had he anticipated the small whimper that came out of DiNozzo’s throat. He managed to twist in his seat without breaking the seal of their lips, deepening the kiss as he wrapped his other hand around the back of Tony’s head. DiNozzo wasn’t going anywhere, not if Gibbs had anything to say about it.

By the time they broke apart, Jethro could have drawn a map of Tony’s mouth. He was also half sprawled on top of the taller man and the car’s windows were thoroughly fogged up.

Worried that he’d gone too fast, Gibbs looked down at Tony. The other man was looking up at him with luminous eyes and Jethro couldn’t help but kiss him again. This time, it was more gentle, with tongues dancing against one another instead of frantically penetrating. Jethro could have stayed there, kissing, for the whole night, but he knew that Tony’d had a bad time of the undercover assignment. He wanted to get the younger agent inside where he could take care of him properly.

“There’s probably a more comfortable place to do this,” Gibbs said after he finally released Tony’s mouth.

DiNozzo looked around, as though noticing his surroundings for the first time. “What’s the matter, never made out in a car before?”

Gibbs smirked. “Not since I could afford something nicer.” He shifted until he was completely off his partner. “Come on, let’s go inside.”

Tony sighed, but capitulated without any more fuss. He limped, though, as they made their way to the elevator and Gibbs looked at him in concern.

“You okay?”

DiNozzo shrugged. “Twisted my ankle when we were running from the bus. It’s no big deal.”

Jethro wrapped an arm around Tony’s waist and the other man immediately leaned in to him, nuzzling his face into Gibbs’ neck. Twisted ankle, his ass. Knowing he’d been had, Gibbs nonetheless didn’t call Tony on it; he just helped support the other man’s weight as they rode the elevator up to DiNozzo’s floor and made their way to his apartment.

Gibbs half-expected to be pounced once they got inside, but his mercurial companion once again surprised him. Tony slipped out of Jethro’s arms as Gibbs was removing the key from the door. The younger man drifted around the apartment, touching things with a bemused look on his face.

The sudden shift in mood didn’t concern Jethro. Tony hadn’t been undercover for long, but he’d been in deep and, for much of it, out of touch with his backup. It wasn’t surprising that he would need some adjustment time. That was one reason why Gibbs had brought him back to his apartment instead of Jethro’s house. Being surrounded by familiar things was a great way to remind Tony of who he was.

While DiNozzo was busy reminding himself that he was Anthony DiNozzo, special agent, and not some prison-breaking scumbag, Jethro went into the kitchen. He hadn’t forgotten Ducky’s comment that Tony needed to eat. He rummaged in the cupboards and, amongst the cereal and PopTarts, found some of that soup that was packaged to be heated up in the microwave. Even Gibbs didn’t have any trouble following the directions and, by the time Tony was done with his journey of self re-discovery, Jethro was able to hand him a cup of hot tomato soup.

“Mmmm,” Tony sighed after he’d taken a sip. “Comfort food.”

“You looked like you could use a little,” Gibbs commented. “Comfort, that is.”

Tony took another sip, eyes never leaving Gibbs’ as he stared at the older man over the mug’s rim. After he swallowed, DiNozzo licked his lips; Jethro didn’t even realize he’d been staring until Tony chuckled.

“I take it comfort’s not all you’re offering?” The younger man asked in a husky voice.

Gibbs met his gaze steadily. “Anything you need, Tony.”

DiNozzo smiled then, a sweet smile and not his normal Cheshire cat grin. “I think I just might be taking you up on that.” His smile faded and Tony picked at his shirt with the fingers of the hand not holding his soup. “After I take a shower, that is.” He bent his head and took a sniff. “Whew. I’m surprised you let me in the car smelling like this.”

Jethro shrugged. “I hadn’t noticed. I was too busy watching you breathe.”

Tony blushed and ducked his head. “I’ll go get the water running.”

“Do you, ah,” Gibbs asked, also shy at the intimate moment. “Need any help with that?”

DiNozzo slowly shook his head. “No. Don’t take this the wrong way, but I need to find my own skin.”

“I understand.” Jethro responded simply. He’d been undercover enough to know exactly what Tony was talking about.


Tony gave Gibbs another one of those sweet smiles before coming over to Jethro and kissing him softly. Jethro wrapped an arm around his waist, careful not to spill the soup that DiNozzo still held, and kissed him back, deeper than the first. He let go reluctantly, knowing that Tony would feel better when he was clean.

“Go,” he instructed. “Take your shower. I’ll be still here when you get back.”

“Thanks, Boss,” Tony said again. “It won’t take me long.”

“Take your soup with you,” Gibbs nagged. “You can drink it while you get the shower ready.”

“Gee, Gibbs, didn’t know you were such a mother hen,” Tony quipped as he moved out of the kitchen. He was, however, taking his soup with him.

“Mother hen’s got nothing to do with it, DiNozzo,” Jethro warned him. “It’s just that you’re gonna need all the liquids in you that you can get.” He grinned. “You might be losing fluids later.”

DiNozzo looked at him and blinked. Then he lifted his mug and took a deep drink before raising it in a cocky salute to Gibbs. Before Jethro could respond, Tony had disappeared into the bedroom.

Gibbs took the opportunity to look more closely around the apartment. He’d been there before, but it’d been a mess then. That was different now, the living room was neat as a pin. Not too surprising, there was a large television set and an entertainment center that practically groaned under the weight of all the DVDs and video tapes it held. The impressive collection it held was matched by the bookshelves. They were massive built-ins and were full to bursting. Jethro wandered over to look at the titles and found that they were mostly related to the military. Magazines were sprinkled in among the books and there were familiar titles, like Leatherneck and Naval Affairs. Tony obviously took his job very seriously.

A large leather recliner was positioned close to the bookshelves and looked awfully inviting. Gibbs’ last couple of days hadn’t been as bad as Tony’s, but they’d been hectic and full of worry. He lowered himself into the leather chair and sighed in contentment. It was every bit as comfortable as it looked. His arm brushed against a side table and, with a thump muffled by the carpeting, something was knocked off. Jethro bent to pick the wayward object up and discovered it was a remote. However, to his confusion, it was connected to the chair.

“Ah, I see you found the recliner,” Tony commented, coming out of the bedroom. “I was going to tell you about it.”

“You have a remote for your chair?” Gibbs asked in disbelief, not even distracted by the fact that Tony had already taken his shirt off.

“Not all technology is your enemy, Gibbs,” Tony stated fondly. “Lean back and I’ll show you.”

Gibbs warily did as he was told. Tony watched and waited until he was settled. Once Jethro nodded, DiNozzo pressed something on the remote and suddenly Gibbs felt the sensation of hands kneading his back. He jumped a little at first, but then the massage did its magic and he relaxed back down into the seat.

“It’s a massage chair,” Tony explained. “Pretty cool, huh?”

All Jethro could do was nod and DiNozzo chuckled.

“I came out to ask you if you want to save my clothes as evidence, but I can see you’re a little occupied at the moment. I’ll just kick them off to the corner and you can tell me what you want me to do with them in the morning.” Tony frowned at Gibbs’ obvious bliss at the massage the chair was providing. “Don’t fall asleep on me, Gibbs.”

“I won’t,” Jethro promised.

He lied. Gibbs had drifted off before Tony’s water had even gotten hot. The next he knew, there was a delicious sensation growing in his groin area that far outstripped the pleasure he was enjoying from the mechanical massage of the chair. He opened his eyes to find Tony kneeling in front of him. Somehow, the younger man had managed to get Gibbs unzipped and his cock in his mouth without Jethro waking.

Gibbs opened his mouth, meaning to protest. Instead, all that came out was a loud groan. Tony smiled and slipped Jethro from between his lips.

“I warned you not to fall asleep,” he reminded the older man. He continued to work Gibbs with his hands.

Jethro reached for his lover. “Come up here.”

Tony stood and Gibbs could see he was wearing only a towel. It was wrapped dangerously low across DiNozzo’s hips, showcasing his well-developed torso. Water glistened on Tony’s skin, revealing that the other man hadn’t been out of the shower long.

The chair was big and Tony obviously intended on snuggling on it with Gibbs. Jethro had other ideas. His hands guided DiNozzo down until Tony was straddling his lap and facing him. The towel gaped as DiNozzo spread his legs to position himself across Gibbs’ knees, giving Jethro a tantalizing peek at his lover’s equipment.

“I’m not too heavy for you, am I?” Tony squirmed, obviously uncomfortable at being on someone’s lap.

“Never,” Gibbs assured him. “Besides, this way, we can do this.”

He pulled Tony so close that DiNozzo was practically draped across his chest, then he tucked one hand under Tony’s chin and kissed him deeply. Leaning forward as he was, Tony’s groin pressed against Jethro’s exposed cock. Both men groaned at the contact.

Gibbs, however, didn’t intend for it to end there. His hands wandered across Tony’s back, stroking the bare flesh greedily. Tony couldn’t seem to hold still and constantly wriggled. The towel, never firmly fastened, came loose and eventually fell to the floor. Jethro took advantage of its loss to wrap his hands around Tony’s ass and draw his lover closer. That action, of course, caused their groins to grind together and Tony broke off the kiss to moan.

“You keep that up,” he panted, “and we’re never going to get to the main event.”

Jethro looked up from nibbling on Tony’s neck, being careful to keep away from the side with the bandaged cut. “Ducky said nothing strenuous. The main event’s gonna have to wait for another night.”

Tony rubbed himself across Gibbs’ lap, laughing softly at the way the older man had to close his eyes to control himself. “Ducky said nothing too strenuous, Boss,” he reminded Gibbs.

Jethro had recovered enough to give his lover a lofty look. “I don’t know any other way to do it.”

DiNozzo reached for the remote. “That’s what the chair’s for, Gibbs.”

He pushed a couple of buttons and the gentle kneading that Jethro had so enjoyed changed to a more aggressive motion; it felt almost like a series of small punches. Small, but with enough strength that not only rocked Jethro’s body, but also Tony’s. As he realized the implications, Gibbs smiled.

Taking that smile as a yes, Tony attacked Jethro’s shirt. There were far too many buttons, but Gibbs had to admit that part of the problem with getting it off had to do with Tony; he kept insisting on kissing every inch of Jethro’s chest as it was revealed, slowing the process down a lot.

The next hurdle was Gibbs’ pants. Tony wanted his partner to just leave them on, but Jethro would hear nothing of it.

“Our first time will not take place with my pants around my knees, like a teenager in heat,” he stated firmly. “Just lift your butt up so I can slide them off.”

Tony pouted a bit, a reaction that Gibbs put away for another time. He had no objection to making love with his clothes on, but the first time together was special. Normally, he would have insisted on a bed, at least, but the vibrating aspect of the chair was too big of an asset to discard. Not when Tony was so tired.

Working together, the two men managed to free Gibbs from his remaining garments. Settling back on top of the older man, Tony gasped to feel bare skin along the length of his body. He stroked his hands across Jethro’s chest in wonder; as though the older man’s body was a fine piece of sculpture he was admiring. DiNozzo squirmed again and, in self defense, Gibbs grabbed him by the hips.

“Tony, as much as I’d like to prolong this,” Jethro admitted, “if we wait much longer, I won’t be able to prolong it.”

DiNozzo thrust his pelvis forward, grinning when the movement caused Gibbs to moan. “So what are you waiting for?”

Gibbs ceased all motion. “We’re not doing this without preparation, Tony. No lube or no condoms means no ‘main event.’”

“I’m already ahead of you, Boss.”

Tony took one of Jethro’s hands, kissed his fingertips, and then guided it to his back passage. Gibbs squeezed one of the firm cheeks before slipping his hands in-between. Tony was already slick and ready.

“That must have been one hell of a shower,” Jethro murmured.

“I’ve waited three years already,” Tony stated. “No way in hell I was gonna wait one second longer than necessary.”

There was an unopened box of condoms on the side table. Tony slid off Jethro’s lap long enough for the older man to gracelessly open the package and roll one over his cock. While he was doing that, DiNozzo fussed with the remote again. The pounding motion of the chair migrated, until it was concentrated on the lower part of Gibbs’ body. The ex-Marine groaned and pulled Tony down.

The lovers kissed greedily for a moment and then, with one last nip to the side of Gibbs’ jaw, Tony levered himself up a bit. Jethro held his cock steady as DiNozzo began lowering himself on it. Tony needed to shift his hips side to side a bit in order to coax the large tip in, but it finally popped through the ring of muscle that guarded the opening to DiNozzo’s body.

Both men groaned.

Gibbs was temped to close his eyes in order to concentrate on the sensation of heat enveloping his cock, but Tony locked his gaze onto Jethro’s. There was no way that Gibbs would break that hold, not when their bodies were working together to join. Bracing himself with his hands on the arms of the chair, Tony slowly lowered himself down. Jethro kept a grip on his lover’s hips, steadying him. By the time DiNozzo was fully seated, both men were covered in sweat.

And the chair kept on vibrating.

“Oh, God,” Tony moaned, throwing his head back.

The chair pulsated beneath Gibbs, sending waves of vibration through the older man’s body and into Tony. Each wave caused the cock buried inside Tony to shift in a throbbing motion. It wasn’t quite a thrust, but it was a hell of a lot more than a wiggle.

“Come here,” Jethro ground out past the groans that wanted to escape his throat. Since Tony was impaled on his cock, there was only one place for him to go; he leaned forward and the two men kissed.

It wasn’t necessary for the lovers to move; the chair was doing that for them. They continued to kiss as it sent vibrations that caused their two bodies to slide against one another. Tony’s erect cock was caught between them and the friction caused waves of pleasure to course through them.

They coupled like that for minutes, but as incredible as the sensations were, they weren’t quite enough to put either man over the top.

Tony pulled away from Jethro’s mouth. “I need more,” he panted.

DiNozzo attempted to hump on Gibbs’ lap, but Jethro wouldn’t let him. An iron grip on Tony’s hips kept him still. Or, as still as the chair would allow.

“Ducky said nothing too strenuous,” Gibbs reminded him, breathing heavy.

“Please, Boss,” Tony pleaded. The long length of the other man inside him felt incredible, put the pressure was building with no release in sight. “I need… God, I gotta come.”

“I’ve got you,” Jethro reassured him. He was going to come inside the tight furnace of his lover’s body, there was no doubt about that. “Trust me.”

Keeping his hold on Tony’s hips, Jethro started undulating underneath DiNozzo, thrusting up sharply at the apex of every twist. Tony cried out as his lover penetrated even deeper, bracing himself against Gibbs’ sturdy shoulders. Jethro released his possession of Tony’s hips just long enough to reach up and grab DiNozzo’s arm, all but dragging it down to DiNozzo’s erection.

“Come for me,” Gibbs encouraged him. “Make me come inside you.”

Tony fisted his engorged organ. As desperate as he was, it still took nearly a dozen strokes before he reached orgasm. Crying out in release and relief, he came, spurting his come across both of their stomachs. Instinctively, Tony’s body clamped down on its most welcome invader, milking Gibbs’ release.

Tony’s eyes glazed over and, as the warmth of his semen coated Gibbs’ skin and his lover’s ass constricted around his embedded cock, Jethro came too. His cries were a sound of triumph. Tony was his and he was Tony’s; no matter what the future held, they were no longer alone.

The next that Gibbs knew, he was coming back to himself; still in the chair and with Tony draped across his chest. He ran a finger through his lover’s damp hair, but didn’t know whether it was wet from his shower or from his exertions. The chair was no longer moving and Jethro wondered that DiNozzo had had the clarity of mind to turn it off. He turned his head lazily to the side and found that wasn’t the case. The chair was actually unplugged. Their lovemaking had rocked it so much that they’d yanked the plug right out of the wall.

“Mmmm…” Tony murmured indistinctly against Gibbs’ skin.

Jethro ran a hand soothingly across his back. “What was that? I didn’t hear you.”

Tony lifted his head, smiling slightly. “I said, did you get the license plate of that cock that split me open.”

“Are you okay?” Gibbs asked. Their coming together had been wild and glorious, but if it had hurt Tony, it would never be repeated. At least, not with such abandon.

The smile became a full blown grin. “Never better.”

“That so,” Gibbs said nonchalantly. He brought his hands down to Tony’s ass and squeezed. DiNozzo flinched.

“Okay, so I’m a little bit sore,” he admitted. The slightest of shadows crossed Tony’s face. “It’s good; it reminds me that I’m not Jeffery.”

Jethro’s face darkened. “You’re nothing like Jeffery White.”

Tony snorted. “We’re both people who keep our real faces hidden in the hopes that someone will be fooled into caring about us.”

Gibbs’ grip tightened. “I know you, Tony. The real you and not some mask. And I love you. Not because I’ve been fooled into caring about who I think you are, but because I love who you really are.”

Tony smiled. “I know and that’s why it’s good that my ass throbs a little. It’s a nice reminder.”

Gibbs shook his head. He knew this man, but didn’t know if he’d ever understand him. It would be fun, though, trying to figure him out. “Come on, let’s go to bed. Ducky said you’d need rest.”

DiNozzo obediently got off Jethro and gave the older man a hand up. “Somehow, I doubt this is what Ducky had in mind when he said I needed someone to take care of me.”

“Oh, I don’t know,” Gibbs picked up his discarded shirt, using it to quickly wipe down first Tony, then himself, and, finally, the chair. “Ducky knows more than you think he does and I’m not talking about those cockamamie stories of his either.”

Tony blinked and shook his head. “I don’t even want to think about Ducky knowing anything about our sex life.” He yawned. “You know, maybe bed isn’t such a bad idea.”

Gibbs refrained from making any I-told-you-so comments. He did fondly pat the chair on his way by it. Tony was right, there were times when technology was his friend. Then again, call him old-fashioned, but he was looking forward to making love to Tony without mechanical assistance.

They made their way to Tony’s room and under the covers of his king-sized bed in a comfortable silence. DiNozzo immediately wormed his way across the mattress and snuggled against Gibbs’ body. Jethro’s arms came up automatically to hold him tight. It was so natural that it felt like they’d been sleeping together for years.

Tony fell asleep quickly, but Jethro lay awake for a few minutes longer. He couldn’t help but remember that hopeless feeling he’d had earlier in the day when he didn’t know if Tony was dead or not. He couldn’t stop sending the other man into danger; it was part of the job. No doubt, there would be other instances in the future where Tony’s life was in peril. At least, now, if flashes of DiNozzo’s life passed in front of Jethro’s eyes, he had the comfort of knowing that he would be an active part of the picture.

Gibbs settled down to sleep, content. The future would just have to take care of itself for a while. Tony was in his arms now and that was all that mattered.

~ the end ~


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