AUTHOR: Ashleigh Anpilova
PAIRING: Leroy Jethro Gibbs/Donald 'Ducky' Mallard
SUB-GENRE: Angst. Episode Related. Mini Series
SUMMARY: A sequel to: Not Too Old To Dream and If Wishes Were Horses and a companion piece to Ducky's Dilemma. Set during UnSEALed. For once Gibbs decides he cannot trust his gut. Written for Challenge #27 'Titles'
WORD COUNT: 749
DISCLAIMER: I don't own these characters, nor am I making any money from them. I merely borrow them from time to time.
You are everything I never knew I always wanted.
Jethro strode away from Autopsy, shaking his head, feeling like a thousand fools.
What had he been thinking of?
What had possessed him to do what he'd done?
His gut really had let him down – for the first time ever. Well, almost the first time.
For months now he'd felt sure, had been told by his gut, that Ducky had realized how he felt about him. And not only realized it, but returned the feelings.
That Ducky had wanted him in the way he wanted Ducky.
That Ducky loved him in the way he loved Ducky.
That Ducky had realized he was everything Jethro, until recently, had never known he'd wanted. How pathetic was that? That was the kind of thing eighteen year olds who read romantic fiction thought. It wasn't the way a hardened, tough, sarcastic, cynical ex-Marine of fifty thought.
Anyway, it wasn't true. It couldn't be true.
His gut was lying to him. Was playing him false.
The last few months with the greater intimacy, the more touches, the looks, the way they were around one another, had just been another step in friendship. That was all. No more and no less.
If not, surely by now Ducky would have said something, done something. Wouldn't he?
He'd been so blatant recently, how could anyone failed to have notice. Take him following Ducky into the head and watching him, surely Ducky had noticed that? And just now, stroking, caressing, cupping, patting his cheek. Oh, that was just the kind of thing one man did to another, wasn't it? Just the kind of touches friends shared.
He touched the hand that had caressed Ducky's warm, soft cheek with his other hand and he shivered as he recalled the touch. And finally he allowed the fission of excitement, which he had hitherto suppressed, to race through his body, making him tingle, making him feel truly alive. God, it had felt good to touch Ducky like that.
Hell, what did he have to do? Seduce Ducky on one of the Autopsy tables? Grab him and kiss him?
If he thought it'd work, he might even do it. He wanted, he loved, Ducky that much. He dreamed about him. He jerked off to thoughts of Ducky touching him, kissing him, holding him, stroking him. To thoughts of Ducky – Instantly, he stopped his mind from going there. Those thoughts were okay in his own home, in his own bed, but not in the corridors of the office.
What more did he have to do to show Ducky?
Ducky was gay; he'd had men interested in him before. He knew the signs, surely he did. He must have recognized what Jethro was doing, trying to say. He must have done.
He must have done and it really was as Jethro had thought: Ducky wasn't interested in him like that.
Why the hell would he be? He wasn't Ducky's type. He could understand that, really he could. Ducky had two degrees, on top of his medical degree, Jethro had managed his High School diploma. Ducky liked fine wines, the opera, art, dinners at good restaurants; in short he liked romance. Romance to Jethro was a foreign word. Ducky dressed formally, even at home. Jethro's wore a suit only when he absolutely had to. And those were only things on the surface; their differences went beyond that.
No, he could understand. He really could. He really could understand why Ducky wouldn't want him as a lover. Hell, if he thought about it, he was surprised Ducky wanted him as a friend.
But thankfully he did. And Jethro knew he mustn't mess the friendship up. It meant more to him than anything else ever had done.
It was time for him to stop his foolish thoughts.
It was time for him to ignore his gut. It wasn't really telling him what he thought, what he wanted it to be telling him, it was just wishful thinking.
It was time for him to stop seeing the way Ducky looked at him, touched him, seemed so happy to see him, as anything beyond their close, intimate friendship.
By now if Ducky had been interested in him, he'd have done something. Said something. He'd have made a move.
But he hadn't.
That was that.
Giving the hand that had touched Ducky's cheek, one final touch, Jethro turned his mind away from Ducky and began to think about the case.
He still had his wishes. They'd have to be enough.