AUTHOR: Ashleigh Anpilova
PAIRING: Leroy Jethro Gibbs/Donald 'Ducky' Mallard
SUB-GENRE: Established Relationship
SUMMARY: Ducky notices that Jimmy Palmer has made a startling realisation. This is a companion piece to my own It Was In His Voice and Periwinkle's (periwinkle27) Discovery. It was spawned by a line: I won’t tell Ducky; he doesn’t need to know. My thanks to her for letting me continue the story.
DISCLAIMER: I don't own these characters, nor am I making any money from them. I merely borrow them from time to time.
Oh, dear, I do believe that Mr. Palmer has worked out what my real relationship with Jethro is.
I had pondered for some months whether he would or not, after all sometimes Jethro is not as subtle as he might be when he visits me in Autopsy. I have often wondered whether I should mention something to him, but I have to confess that I do rather enjoy his special attention and the liberties he grants me. Besides it isn’t as if he kisses me or says anything inappropriate, although sometimes the devil in me wishes . . . But that is inappropriate.
However, Jethro does treat me differently from how he treats the rest of the team. I suppose that is only natural, we are close friends, extremely close friends, and have been for more years than I sometimes care to remember.
Jethro’s whole being is slightly different when he is around me. His eyes and countenance, both of which are often harsh, soften slightly, and his voice takes on a somewhat intimate timbre, even when he is snapping ‘Duck’ at me, and telling me that we do not have time for stories. He indulges me with my storytelling, I am certain that it must irritate him from time to time, especially as he knows them all so well. However, I also know that they can, despite his snapping at me, relax him, or give him time to gather his thoughts more clearly. I know my Jethro; I can read him as clearly as I can read an x-ray - more clearly in fact. Sometimes x-rays hide things, my Jethro never does.
I knew that the children hadn’t worked out that we are more than just the good friends we appear to be. Why should they? To them I am merely an elderly Medical Examiner who tells long, rambling stories, stories that they assume have no relevance, I am not a nubile, beautiful, female redhead; nor am I a trained investigator. Therefore they do not pay me the same attention or notice me as much as they do other people. I know that they are fond of me, all of them are; although I sincerely doubt that Officer David would admit to such a feeling, but I am not ‘one of them’.
I have often wondered about Abigail, especially as she is so close to both Jethro and myself. But unless she is a far better actress than I have always imagined, I do believe that, despite her working with us the longest and how close to us she is, she has noticed. If she had done so, she would bounce. Maybe it is a good thing that she hasn’t worked it out. I do sometimes think that as much as Jethro loves his surrogate daughter, he occasionally finds her bouncing a little too much for him.
Jimmy is fond of me too; I know that. He shows it in so many ways. For example how he tries to ‘protect’ me from Jethro’s ‘irritation’, by deflecting the attention to himself. And of course all that does is to make my Jethro more irriated, but with Jimmy not me. You see Jethro too tries to protect me, and he perceives Jimmy’s interruptions as being a slight on me, just as he does when any of the children behave in such a manner. That is why poor Anthony received such a severe slap around the head recently. He dared to snap at me, dared to tell me that they didn’t have time for stories. I suspect the poor boy had a headache that lasted for quite some time - I do know that Jethro’s hand stung after he had delivered the blow.
It was when I glanced up to gently admonish Jethro, that I saw Jimmy looking at my beloved. The look on his face told me everything. He knew. But it also told me something else too, that we had no need to worry; that he was neither disgusted nor upset, nor would he go running to the children or Abigail. He would keep our secret.
I won’t tell Jethro; he doesn’t need to know.