AUTHOR: Ashleigh Anpilova
PAIRING: Leroy Jethro Gibbs/Donald 'Ducky' Mallard
SUB-GENRE: Established Relationship. Episode related.
SUMMARY: Set immediately after Brothers In Arms. Gibbs and Ducky try to decide what to do about Jenny and her obsession with La Grenouille.
SPOILERS: Brothers In Arms
PROMPT: lover100 88 - Warning
WORD COUNT: 1,066
DISCLAIMER: I don't own these characters, nor am I making any money from them. I merely borrow them from time to time.
"Duck, what are we going to do about Jenn?" Jethro was slumped next to Ducky on the sofa. It was almost midnight and the day been a long, tiring and stressful one; thus both men were enjoying some quiet time to themselves, in the sanctity of Ducky's home.
Ducky just looked at his lover.
"Really, Dr. Mallard, I'm surprised at you," Jethro said, and laughed.
Ducky looked a little rueful and sighed softly. "I am sorry, my dear. It is just that I am still a little put out by Jennifer's insinuation, indeed her blunt comment, that I was allowing my personal feelings to interfere with my professional judgment. And as it in the second occasion in a relatively short space of time that someone has questioned my professional abilities, it makes me wonder if maybe -"
"Duck." Quietly Jethro cut into Ducky's words, and took his lover's hand. "You're not still bothered about Abby disagreeing with you, are you?"
Ducky shrugged. "A little, Jethro. Yes, I am. However, at least with Abigail I know that there was no malice behind her belief. Oh, let's forget about Abby, my dear. That at least is over and done with."
Jethro leaned across and kissed Ducky on the cheek. "What exactly did Jenn say to offend you?"
"She said that just because I found La Grenouille, 'charming', that I was therefore incapable of seeing him for what he really was. That I allowed the fact that the man is fond of good opera and enjoys excellent cognac, is intelligent and other similar things, to cloud my judgment of him. Thus my opinion, based on my initial study of his psychological profile, that he would not resort to violence to solve his problems, could not be accurate."
"Well, you proved you were right with Webster."
"That is not the point, Jethro,” Ducky said, a little tersely.
"I know, Duck." Jethro put his arm around Ducky's shoulder and pulled him against him. "I also know that you wouldn't let personal feelings affect your professional judgment."
"Thank you, my dear, I appreciate hearing that. Although, I must confess there would be one exception to that. However, other than that well, let us say that I have always taken pride in my professional judgment." Ducky's tone had softened, and he looked at Jethro.
Jethro swallowed and squeezed Ducky's shoulder. He didn't really know what to say, but then so often words weren't necessary between them. Thus instead he lightened the moment by asking, "Do I need to be jealous, Duck?"
"Of The Frog. You finding him 'charming', and sharing the same interests and stuff. I just wondered if -"
Ducky borrowed Jethro's favorite way of silencing Ducky himself when they weren't at the office. "You will never have any need to worry, dearest," Ducky said quietly, after the kiss had ended.
"Know that, Duck."
For a moment or two they just sat and looked at one another.
Then Jethro sighed and said, "So what are we going to do about her? She's out of control. She's dangerous. In fact," he sipped his drink, and said quietly, "At the moment I'd say she was as dangerous as . . ." He trailed off, unable to think of a suitable comparison; or at least one he wished to voice.
"La Grenouille himself?" Ducky too spoke quietly.
"I wouldn't go quite that far, but, yeah. Pretty much."
"She is obsessed, Jethro. And that is what makes her so dangerous. So very dangerous. And what makes it worse in many ways, is that we have no idea as to why she is so fixated on him, why she is so determined to destroy him. To make him pay for his 'crimes'."
"Sorry to say this, Duck, but I don't really care anymore." Jethro spoke very quietly, but frankly.
"Oh, Jethro." Ducky's tone contained a hint of sadness, but there was no rebuke in it, just quiet, albeit regretful, understanding.
Jethro shrugged. "She put my team at risk earlier. She kept telling us to hold our fire when we went after Jones. She'd rather one of us had been injured, or killed, just to keep him alive."
"Are you certain, my dear?"
Jethro considered the question. "Maybe not quite, but . . . She did put us at risk, Duck. She really did. Plus, she snapped at Abby and McGee, and blamed them for Webster's cell exploding; she called your professional judgment into question; undermined my authority publicly, and generally messed everyone around. She doesn't have the luxury of doing that. She's the Director of NCIS."
"I know. She is also, as I am sure you are aware, using your past relationship, and her knowledge of your loyalty, to her own ends."
"Yeah, I do know that. And I'm not going to stand by any longer. I warned her."
"Yeah. Told her that she wouldn't be Director of NCIS for much longer. And it wasn't an idle threat, Duck. It can't be. I can't stand by and watch her risk my team and her own life on a personal vendetta. I can't. And I won't."
"I know, my dear.” Ducky put one hand on Jethro’s thigh; it felt warm and comforting. “Would you like me, in my capacity as a doctor to take matters forward? That way you can -"
"Have a clear conscience?" Jethro snapped at Ducky.
"Not exactly, no."
"Sorry, Duck. It's just . . ." He trailed off.
"I know," Ducky said quietly.
And Jethro knew he did. "Yeah, guess you do." He began to play with the ends of Ducky's hair.
For a moment or two Jethro shut his eyes and allowed himself to unwind even more, and to enjoy his lover's company. Ducky always seemed able to calm him and reassurance him, to understand him, no matter what.
"Come along beloved," Ducky said quietly, moving to the edge of the sofa, standing up and urging Jethro to join him. "Whatever we are going to do can wait until the morning. For now why do you not come to bed and make love to me?"
Jethro smiled down at his lover; yes, Ducky certainly did have the cures to all of Jethro's ills. "That's the best offer I've had all day, Duck," he said, briefly kissing Ducky's lips, before putting his arm around him and walking towards the door.