TITLE: The NCIS Scuttlebutt Rumour
PAIRING: Leroy Jethro Gibbs/Donald 'Ducky' Mallard
SUB-GENRE: Established Relationship
SUMMARY: Tony hears from the scuttlebutt an interesting rumour, but could it be true?
RATING: NC17 (Overall)
WARNINGS: There will be a few parts that have very brief homophobia. These parts will have the warnings labeled
WORD COUNT: 2367
NCIS headquarters. Time: 8:32AM. Anthony DiNozzo was sat comfortably reclined in his office chair, feet on his desk, and his mind distracted. Staring at the glaring skylight above him, he pondered over something he had just heard.
"Is something wrong, DiNozzo?"
The commanding voice of his superior, Leroy Jethro Gibbs, boomed from behind him and making him jump in his seat.
"Good, then grab your gear and let's get going. Dead navy officer to deal with. Tim, let Ducky know."
Tony made quick to collect up his things, as did his two co-workers, Tim and Ziva.
"On your six, boss." he yelled, almost tripping over his own feet to catch up to him at the elevator.
The journey to the crime scene was relatively silent, apart from honking of horns from passing motorists who didn't appreciate Ziva's driving.
Pulling up not far from where the police had already cornered off the crime scene, she was the first to speak.
"So, Tony. You're clearly distracted this morning. Would you like to share?"
"No, I don't think I do." he said, trying to be nonchalant whilst retrieving his gear from the back of the van.
"Leave him, Ziva. Obviously daydreaming about some young thing in a short skirt
Tony gave him a rather forced smile, the urge to head slap the younger agent was very much present, but he resisted.
"Well now, I'd hate to disappoint you, probie, but that's not it."
Both of them looked at him in surprise.
"Then what?" Ziva asked, "Is it to do with your father again?"
"No, no, he's fine. I'll tell you on the journey back, okay?" Tony replied, looking around to see where Gibbs currently was.
Moments later, Ducky arrived on scene, and Tony was immediately watching any interaction between him and Gibbs.
"Ah, Jethro. A rather interesting body to start off my Monday morning." Ducky said with slight amusement in his voice.
"Always the best for you, Duck."
Gibbs patted Ducky on the shoulder, a touch he'd done a thousand times before and Tony had thought nothing of it. Now however he saw it as something much more than a friendly pat.
Kneeling down and placing his bag beside him, Ducky looked at the corpse before him.
"Right, let's see what we've got here. Oh and could someone go fetch the gurney for me?"
Gibbs quickly stuffed his notepad and pen back into his shirt pocket and was already heading towards the autopsy van.
"On it, Duck."
"Thank you, Jethro."
Normally their boss would bark for one of them to assist Ducky in Jimmy's absence, yet he didn't? It was most un-gibbs-like.
"DiNozzo, quit staring and go help McGee."
Behind him, Tim was grabbing the last of the equipment from the van, and it was clearly more than he could handle.
"Will do, boss."
Taking the camera case from his co-worker, he talked in a hushed voice to him.
"You see that, Probie?"
"Gibbs actually went to get the gurney for Ducky."
"Well yeah, cause that's usually Jimmy's job, but he isn't here. What's the big deal?"
"Nothing apart from the fact that in any normal circumstance one of us would be doing that for him."
Ziva tutted at him.
"So Gibbs did him a favour so that we could do our own work, Tony. Come on, we've got to get the photos and sketches done before Gibbs shouts at us for taking too long."
Thanks to the assistance of local police, they got their work done rather swiftly, and Gibbs even assisted Ducky in getting the body into the van. Again, Tony watched with great interest.
"Tony, give me the damn camera stuff. What are you even looking at?"
His head whipped round as Tim was grabbing the camera stuff out of his hand.
"Don't shush me. You're acting weird today, Tony."
"I think 'weirder' is the more suitable word, McGee." Ziva said over her shoulder as she headed for the driver's side of the van.
"Ha ha, very funny. Look I'll tell you in a minute."
Once everything was packed up and they were all back in the van and returning to the yard, Ziva looked over often at Tony's face, seeing his conflicted expression.
"Well, it's just the three of us again, Tony. Mind telling us why you've been so distracted?"
"If I tell you two this, will you promise not to breathe a word?"
"Something to do with Gibbs?" Tim asked.
"How did you know?"
"Just a hunch, knowing that if Gibbs found out whatever you know about him, your days would be numbered."
Ziva started to get impatient.
"Come on, Tony, stop leaving us in suspense."
"Well...word from the scuttlebutt says Gibbs is seeing someone."
"That's not really all that surprising." she said.
"And so is Ducky."
"Again, not world news."
"It is when the rumours are the people they are seeing are each other."
Tim and Ziva stared at Tony before a honking of horns redrew their attention to the road.
"Geez, Ziva!" Tony yelled, his heart thudding fast.
"That's not funny, Tony." she said, sounding now even more irritated than before.
"I'm just saying what I heard."
"If Gibbs so much as catches a whiff that you're spreading such a rumour, he will probably have your tongue for a trophy. In fact I would very much like it if he did that."
Tim couldn't help but smile at that.
"I know, which is why I seriously need you two to keep quiet. It could just be a stupid rumour, but I was thinking about it and it wouldn't really surprise me if it were true."
"So, a heterosexual man who has had four wives and an elderly man who's had his own fair share of female encounters and you think they're seeing each other?" Tim said, clearly not believing it for a second.
"I very much doubt they're suddenly gay, Tony."
"Well there's bisexuality. Can go both ways. It's a whole new world today, Ziva. Men can be with men and women can be with women." he let out a wistful sigh at that last one, "And besides, they've had their moments."
Now Ziva was shaking her head. It was truly a ridiculous notion.
"They're very close, I admit, but they have been friends for a long time."
"So maybe they decided at some point to take it to the next level."
"You are so dead if Gibbs finds out what you said."
"I'm just saying. Now focus on the road, will you?"
The three of them remained in a silence that stretched on through to them sitting at their desks. Gibbs looked between them, wondering if something had happened. Still, whatever it was, he couldn't deny that the silence was rather nice for once.
Looking at his watch, he decided that now was a good time to pay Ducky a visit down in autopsy. Normally by now he would have something to tell Gibbs about their new body.
"Ah, Jethro, nice timing." Ducky said without even turning around to face him.
"What you got for me, Duck?"
"Our poor unfortunate ex-marine here appears to have had a run in with something not too tasty."
"Well going by the contents of his stomach," he reached over for the bowl containing the contents he'd scooped out, "he has been eating leaves."
Gibbs looked for a split second before motioning for him to put the bowl out of his sight again. He never did like looking at stomach contents, but he did it for Ducky's sake and sometimes it made for better understanding of his theories.
"As in just ones of the trees?"
"Most definitely, and pine needles. I know that some choose the vegan lifestyle, but really, there is more than enough fruit and vegetable produce available, I can't see why he would eat such thing. I did however know of a chap who just loved the wild, and would often make himself some pine needle tea. Apparently they are very high in vitamin c. Personally I would rather eat an orange."
"Aside from that?"
"Not much else to say, but I feel that the source of the poison that killed him may have been in that lot. I've got to send a sample up to Abby once I've stitched this poor fellow back up."
Gibbs could feel Ducky sliding closer beside him, causing an urge to pull the shorter man into his arms. However, he knew that at work they would have to remain professional. Clearing his throat, he moved away slightly.
"I should get going, Duck." his voice came out almost a whisper.
"I know. Just a quick one?"
Gibbs stood in front of the smaller man so that his body somewhat hid their interaction from the security camera located in the far corner of the room. Not that they were all that discreet when it came to physical interaction at the best of times, but much of it was stuff that was always seen as just friendly.
With a sigh, Gibbs smiled, wrapping his arm around the smaller man's waist and their lips connected. Their kiss was brief but full of meaning. Parting, he stared into the doctor's eyes and smiled.
Behind them, Abby sat staring at the sight that welcomed her on the PC screen in front of her via the webcam. She froze for a moment, speechless and feeling guilty knowing that she wasn't meant to have just witnessed their interaction.
The lift pinged and she quickly cut off communication, leaving the two men clueless that they had just been caught.
Tim entered the lab, carrying a cup of coffee in one hand and caf-pow in the other.
"Hey, Abby. Had any luck on the finger prints found at the crime scene yet?"
"No, I've not had any hits yet." she quickly said, still not over the shock.
"You okay?" his voice full of concern, "You look like you just saw a ghost."
Rubbing her hands over her eyes briefly, she tried to shake away the image that sat on the front of her mind.
"I'm fine, just been feeling a bit under the weather today."
Tim's hand clutching her drink moved away, and she reached out for it like a child craving its juice box.
"I probably just need caffeine and I'll be fine."
She took a long slurp of it, immediately feeling the effects.
"Yeah. Look, I need a favour. I've got to get those samples from Ducky. Can you just keep an eye on that and if you get a hit, let me know, okay? Or let Gibbs know first, obviously."
"I'll be glad when Jimmy comes back, saves me from having to keep going there myself or Ducky having to come up to me."
Normally she would take the stairs as she didn't mind the exercise, but then felt she would be better taking the lift in case they were still doing...that. At least the lift would give them a fair warning.
Slowly she approached the door, and when they slid open, Ducky sat alone at his desk. He turned to her and gave a rather bashful smile.
"Abigail, my dear. I'm ever so sorry I haven't brought those samples up to you yet, I completely lost track of time. You should have called me on the cam-thingy rather than coming down here personally."
"Actually...Ducky, I did try to."
"Oh?" Ducky looked momentarily confused, "Sorry, I must not have heard you. "
"No...I don't think you did."
"Are you alright, my dear?"
Abby briefly glanced at the webcam; the thing that started this. She certainly didn't want Tim to overhear their conversation if AFIS should find a match any time soon.
"Can we talk somewhere more private than here?"
He opened the door to his office and beckoned her through. She didn't quite know how to approach the subject, but knew Ducky well enough that he wouldn't have a go at her for what was genuinely an accidental intrusion of privacy. Gibbs on the other hand...
"Now, what's wrong?" he asked, sitting down in the chair opposite her.
She took a brief moment to think of how to explain without simply blurting out that she knew. Looking up, Ducky was giving her a very concerned look.
"Well, as I said, I did try to contact you through the webcam and... no, you didn't realize."
"I didn't mean to upset you by ignoring you."
"I know you didn't. It's just...the camera turned on and I saw...you and Gibbs."
It took a moment for Ducky to realize what she meant, making him blush deep red and he had to look away from her.
"I'm sorry. I didn't even think I would see such a thing." she said, "I promise I won't say a word to anyone. You know me; my lips are most definitely sealed."
Taking a deep breath, she awaited the man's response, but after a long silence, she started again.
"Ducky? I'm really sorry. Also, I really want you to know that I'm happy for you both. You have my support."
Another more brief silence followed until eventually Ducky had pulled himself together enough to speak. His mind was in full throttle with panic and a small bit of self loathing because it was he who talked Gibbs into it.
"It's alright, my dear. It was a mistake on our part to have..." he finally looked back up at her, "let our sudden emotions get in the way of our work."
Leaning forward, Ducky rested his hand on hers.
"Abby, I promise, I'm not mad at you. There was no way you would have known what you would have seen when that camera turned on."
"I am sorry. Really, really sorry. And I won't say anything to Gibbs either. I know he can be really private and...If anyone else finds out, it won't be from me."
"I appreciate it."
Abby blushed as Ducky placed a kiss on her forehead.
"Now, those samples I've been meaning to give you."
"Right. So how long?"
"Abigail." He said in coyly, making her giggle.
END OF PART 1