Disclaimer: I'm not Bellesario or CBS, so I don't claim to own them.
Word Count: 1,000
Setting: Tag to 06x02 Agent Afloat
Note: Title of M*A*S*H episode 06x21 inspired this fic...
Series: Letters to Home
Crossposted: ncisfanfic; ncis_fic; ncis_slash; gibbs_dinozzo
Summary: The time for letter writing was over when Tony finally came home.
I'm ready to come home any time you can get me out of here. Abby said in her last email that something big went down. She also said you got both McGee and Ziva back. Is Vance going to-
Tony cut off his letter as he heard the page to get to the flight deck, so he hauled ass out of his bunk, pushing his way through the ship. The discovery of the clothes and military id started a whirlwind of activity that led to the arrival of Gibbs. He barely noticed Ziva's presence as he worked with Gibbs to solve the case.
Working beside Gibbs after four months apart was both exhilarating and nerve wracking. He was afraid that Gibbs would find fault in his work now, or that the other man didn't feel the way he had said in the one short letter he had received.
When Gibbs had told him he was going home with them, he had been fully prepared to kiss the man without a care about who might be watching. Instead, he ran for small collections of possessions and tossed them in a duffle.
Once back in DC, there was the usual shuffle of paperwork to be completed for the case and Tony found himself sitting at his old desk and touching various parts. When Vance called him to his office, the nerves settled in the pit of his stomach. Technically, Tony should still be on the ship, but Gibbs didn't do technicalities. The meeting with Vance was a quiet and intense affair, but, in the end, the other man had said he was reassigned to DC and Gibbs' team.
The rest of the evening at the office was a blur for Tony as the others listened to his tales of the ship and he even listened to a few of McGee's days as boss in the basement. Then, Abby gave him one final hug and he was left alone with Gibbs in the darkened bullpen.
"You ready to get out of here?" Gibbs' quiet voice brought everything into focus and Tony felt his heart speed up.
"Yeah, Boss," he responded, hoping and fearing that the time was now.
They rode silently in Gibbs' car to the older man's house. Tony didn't even question why he wasn't going to his own place after so long away. He just followed Gibbs quietly down the steps to the basement and watched with a small smile as Gibbs tipped some sawdust out of a battered tin cup.
The bourbon was poured and both men tipped the cups back silently. Neither wanted to talk even though they had quite a bit to say to each other. They sipped their drinks as they collected their thoughts. As usual, Tony broke first.
"Hard to believe that I'm back. I was beginning to think I would either be stuck there for the duration or would have to quit to get back on dry land. Neither option was very appealing."
"Got you back before it became an issue. Vance give you any trouble in his office?"
Tony took another sip and sighed. "Not sure what I did to that man. Maybe Abby can find out if I wronged him in a past life or something. He didn't like it, but said I was reassigned here. What really happened the other week? Langer was bad?"
Tony watched as Gibbs' grip tightened on the cup before the man spoke. "Vance had intel he didn't share. He knew one of the ones he gave me was a mole, but not who. He figured my 'gut' would figure it out for him."
"You don't think Langer was bad, do you?" Tony asked around his last sip.
"I think it deserves more looking into than just the fact Lee shot him. But…" Gibbs trailed off and Tony picked up without missing a beat.
"But you can't actively look because you don't want to rock the boat with Vance watching us all so closely. I miss Morrow at times like this."
"It's not over, but it'll have to wait for now," Gibbs finished his own drink and poured them both some more before breaching the subject they really needed to talk about. "About that letter-"
"I'm ready, Boss," Tony said quickly and quietly. "I've been thinking about it even more and- well- I'm definitely ready," he said with a smile and quick glance down.
Gibbs followed his line of sight and smiled too. "I'm still a bastard and not planning on changing. And this," Gibbs said with a gesture between them, "isn't going to be easy. Can't give Vance any more reasons to split us up."
"I'm up for a challenge," Tony said teasingly as he took a closer step towards Gibbs. "So, I don't know what shape my place is in. Probably going to need a place to crash for a few days while I get things squared away."
"Might be able to think of something," Gibbs answered back as they made their way up the basement stairs.
When they reach Gibbs' bedroom, Gibbs reach out and placed his hand on Tony's shoulder. "Keeping this hidden from the others isn't the only thing that's going to be hard. I'm not- I'm not good at this. Haven't been for a long time."
Tony reached up and ran a finger over Gibbs' cheek before moving his hand behind Gibbs' neck to give it a light squeeze. "I'm not so hot at this either. Well," Tony amended, "I'm hot at this, just not the emotional crap."
Then Tony demonstrated "this" by leaning forward and placing his lips over Gibbs'. It wasn't their first kiss, but it was far better than that disastrous moment six years before when Tony had ran from the basement. It wasn't long before Gibbs had his hands worked under Tony's shirt and Tony was tugging at the waist of Gibbs' pants.
Only the sounds of their pleasure filled the room as Gibbs welcomed Tony home.