Disclaimer: I'm not Bellesario or CBS, so I don't claim to own them.
Genre: Crack!Fic; Pre-Slash
Word Count: 2,866
Dedicated To: xanthe's muse... May she find her way home.
Author's Note: This was spawned from comments in spoonyriffic's journal found in this thread. Be warned. And thanks to Spoony for the title and the icon!
Crossposted: ncisfanfic; ncis_fic; gibbs_dinozzo; ncis_slash
Summary: When a muse disappears, Gibbs is called on to rescue her while giving Tony a crash course in the ways of teleportation.
"DiNozzo! Get your ass over here!"
The incessant beeping signaled the end of Gibbs' middle of the night call and left Tony scrambling to find the remains of his outfit from the previous day.
"Not. Even. A. Hi," he muttered as he attempted to zip his jeans without catching sensitive bits in the wrong place. "And where the fuck is here?"
He paused momentarily at that thought. If it had been a case, Gibbs would have taken two more seconds to throw out the address. They never met at the office in the middle of the night, unless he was already there working. That left one place. Gibbs' house.
"This better be worth it," he mumbled as he exited the apartment wishing for some form of steaming beverage with a copious amount of caffeine.
"'Bout damn time, DiNozzo," was the greeting as he finally made into Gibbs' sanctuary.
"Next time just teleport yourself over there and grab me if you're in that much of a hurry, Boss." It was a testament to how awake Tony was that he was both sniping at Gibbs and that he missed the quirked eyebrow at the mention of teleportation.
"So what's so damn important anyway? And is that coffee?"
Gibbs thrust a mug in his direction and Tony savored the smell more than the taste as he finally started to feel awake.
"Got a mission. Came from higher up the chain of command."
"Not the director?" Tony shuddered, ten seconds thinking of what could go wrong if another director screwed him over.
"Not the director," Gibbs confirmed. "Normally I'd do this alone like I did in '91, but... I've been informed in no uncertain terms that I'm to trust you. And train you."
"Train me?" Tony questioned as his mind pulled up his mental notes on Gibbs' life in 1991.
"It's time you learned to do this," and there was a faint pop in the air and then Tony felt the unmistakeable connection of Gibbs' hand to the back of his head, "DiNozzo."
It took a full ten seconds before Tony's mind fully registered that Gibbs had disappeared and then reappeared behind him. When it did register, Tony spun around and jabbed a finger directly into Gibbs' chest.
"You CAN teleport! I always... I knew I knew, but you know? That's why... This explains a lot Gibbs. And why the hell are you just telling me now? Almost ten years we've worked together. Don't you think that, 'Hey, I can teleport,' is something your partner needs to know in those life and death situations? It's why you weren't blown to smithereens in that explosion, isn't it? And Somalia? You got to the compound too damn fast. And... Teach me?"
"Teach you. We're needed in Africa."
Without time to even think, Tony felt the strong grasp of Gibbs' hand around his bicep and then the air crackled around him.
A blast of heat greeted him as he finished his question, "-t are you do..."
Another headslap brought Tony to his senses. "Get a move on, DiNozzo. We're here to rescue a muse.
Tony hurried to catch up, realizing he wasn't dressed properly for sand. "Guess I'm not in Kansas anymore..."
"So what's a muse?" Tony asked sometime later. "And did you bring water? Deserts make a person a bit thirsty, Boss."
There was a telltale popping sound and Tony found an ice cold bottle of water thrust into his hands. "If you can do that, why do you always get us to make coffee runs for you?" At Gibbs' incredulous look, Tony added, "Forget I asked that. Muse?"
"Muses are a detailed source of knowledge, DiNozzo. Highly valued by the government and well protected. More than the President."
"Then how the hell did it go missing and need to be rescued?"
"They sometimes slip their leashes and while they are very intelligent in some areas, staying out of trouble isn't one of them. I keep telling the higher ups that a good headslap works wonders. Did for you."
Tony tried to look indignant, but failed. "So where is he being held?" he opted to ask instead.
"She. And last intel placed her in Africa. But there's been chatter that she's been captured by a group of insurgents."
"And they expect you with just me as backup to rescue some chick that slipped her government leash? Even you can't take a group of insurgents on by yourself, Boss. Teleportation or not."
"Who says we have to fight them, DiNozzo? One of us serves as a decoy while the other pops in, grabs the girl and gets out. What I would have done with Ziva if more people had been in the know."
"Instead, I played decoy tied to a chair pumped full of truth juice. But you still teleported after sniping the bad guy?" Tony formed it as a question and hoped that this newly talkative Gibbs would provide an answer. To his shock, one was delivered.
"There was enough confusion that I could teleport without threat of discovery. You didn't know it until now and neither did anyone else."
Tony pondered that for a moment before his mind latched onto a random thread. "Ari could teleport, couldn't he?"
The smile he received from Gibbs was more praise than he had received in the last year from the man. "Ari was a rogue agent. He wasn't just playing the FBI, Mossad and Hammas."
"So you work for someone other than NCIS?"
"Was recruited and trained in the Corp. They usually start us out young," Gibbs added with a sidelong glance at Tony.
"Then why was I picked by these people?"
Gibbs snorted. "Same reason you've worked with me for almost a decade. Anytime they tried to give me a partner it didn't take. Figured you'd do."
Tony flashed one of his famous smiles. "So when do I get to teleport? Gotta tell you, Boss, the possibilities are endless!"
Gibbs stopped in his tracks and gave Tony a stony glare. "And if you even think of abusing it, DiNozzo, you'll learn that I have means other than headslaps to keep people in line."
Tony's mind filtered through all of the possibilities of that statement as he continued to trudge along behind Gibbs.
Thirty minutes later, he stopped in his tracks and didn't move until Gibbs stopped and turned back to look at him.
"What is it, DiNozzo?"
"If you can teleport, why the hell have we been walking through a desert for the last half hour? And how do you know where this muse is at if all they have is chatter? And if you are going to teach me, shouldn't you be teaching?" Tony wanted to add a foot stomp, but sand and foot stomps didn't exactly mesh well.
"Wondering if you were ever going to catch up," Gibbs said with the smirk that Tony was starting to hate. "Since you want to learn, then you need to get us there."
"Me?" and Tony was sure that there wasn't a squeak in his voice. If Gibbs said otherwise, he would deny it.
"You," Gibbs confirmed. "Rule One," and Tony groaned, "Any person you are touching teleports with you when you go."
Tony looked down where Gibbs was grasping his forearm. "How many of these rules are there, Boss? And do animals count?"
"About fifty and animals don't count unless you know a shapeshifter."
"Shapeshifter? You're just yanking my chain. Right? Boss?"
"Teleporting," Gibbs said in response.
"Right. Teleporting. So, um, how do I do it? Click my heels together three times? I don't think the ruby slippers will fit my feet, Boss."
"Never took you for a cross-dresser, DiNozzo, but if the shoe fits…"
"Hardy-har-har, Gibbs. Now what do I do?"
"First time's a bit tricky. Close your eyes and think of someplace."
"They told me the best place was the place you felt the safest. It'll be your anchor point for everything else."
Tony snorted. "Easier said than done, Boss. So… Think safe thoughts, think safe thoughts," he began to chant, only to close his mouth when Gibbs gave him a light slap.
When Gibbs' hand connected with his head, something triggered inside Tony. He felt this deep tugging sensation from the soul of his body and with it a deep longing to be someplace else.
His vision started to tilt and he tried to call out to Gibbs. "I think something is-"
"-happening," and Tony found himself collapsing on a concrete floor.
All too soon, his senses were assaulted with the smell of sawdust and bourbon as he looked up into the blue eyes of his boss.
"Good work, Tony," Gibbs said around one his rare smiles. "You found it."
"It's your basement!"
"Better here than the elevator at headquarters."
"Me. Changed after I started working there. Used to be the woodshed behind my dad's store."
"But it's your basement, Boss. Don't read anything into this."
"What's there to read, Tony," Gibbs said innocently, but Tony could see a devious twinkle in the older man's eyes.
Tony sat with a huff on the bottom steps to the basement. "Well, we've determined I'm very proficient at teleporting around this damn basement. So how do I go anywhere else?"
"Concentration," Gibbs said shortly.
"I've tried concentrating, Boss. I've pictured every place I could think of and they all lead back here. Guess I'm a one location teleporting man."
"Stand up!" Gibbs' sharp voice had Tony responding before he realized what he was doing. "Get your ass over here."
"Gonna teach me to roll over next, Gibbs," Tony quipped as he ran a nervous hand through his hair.
"Nope. Gonna give you incentive."
"Incentive?" But before Tony could question it further, he felt a sharp slap to his ass. "Ouch! Boss?!"
"Each time you don't take us to your chosen destination, you'll get a slap added to the count. Now take us to your apartment."
Tony was still rubbing the spot on his ass as he muttered, "On it, Boss."
It took an hour and twenty swats before Tony was effectively teleporting to his chosen locations. He'd also learned Rule Five, 'Make sure a room hasn't changed it's layout prior to teleportation,' when Gibbs almost landed inside a couch. That one had earned him an extra swat even though he tried to argue that didn't know the rule prior to teleporting there.
But finally, Gibbs looked Tony over and said, "We're ready."
"We are? Uh, yeah, sure. Go in and distract an insurgent group while rescuing the girl."
Tony watched as Gibbs pulled out a map and pointed. "This is where they have her, DiNozzo. Now take us there."
Tony studied the position for a few moments before scrunching his face and clicking his heels together. "There's no place like Africa," he muttered as he felt the tug begin and another slap to his tender behind.
"So that's it," Tony whispered, even though there was no chance of the insurgents hearing him.
Gibbs just nodded as he continued to look through the scope of his rifle that Tony had completely missed at his side. Some detective you are, Junior, he could hear his dad's voice saying in his head.
"What do we have, Boss?" Tony was anxious to get this mission over with so he could explore his newfound skill in more detail, preferably without Gibbs' presence.
"I've counted twenty of 'em. They got the muse trussed up in the center of the camp in front of some projection screen." Then Gibbs offered Tony his rifle.
With a reverent caution, Tony positioned the scope and peered at the camp. His breath caught when he saw the images flicking across the screen.
"Boss!" he hissed. "They've got video running of Ziva and me on that damn flight from France. How the hell?"
Gibbs snatched his rifle back and focused on the screen. "Damn," Gibbs muttered.
Then Tony bit back a yelp when he felt two sharp stings to his ass. "What the hell did I do now?"
"You left your witness unattended on the plane. And you both wonder how the hell someone compromised her. You know better than that, DiNozzo."
"I was with Ziva. Alone. For days, Boss. You know what that does me."
Gibbs sighed. "Looks like they're torturing the muse. Can't waste anymore time. I will do the decoy, you keep watch and do the extraction when I have a clear area around her."
Tony nodded as he accepted the rifle back. Then he watched as Gibbs disappeared with a pop.
It was hard keeping track of Gibbs as he popped in and out around the camp. One by one, the insurgents were dwindling in number. Tony wasn't sure what Gibbs was doing with them, but figured it was probably better he didn't know. He was also studying the video clips the muse was being forced to watch. Gibbs had called it torture, and Tony could understand why. It was like someone had a hidden camera capturing every bad moment that he and Gibbs were a part of. Tony found himself growling lightly when he saw that lawyer woman sitting on Gibbs' couch with beer and a slice of pizza.
"Gonna have a few words with him about that," Tony said darkly.
Then he realized it was time to move. He positioned the rifle in a useful place and ensured there was a round loaded. Next he crouched in a defensive position so he was prepared upon arrival within the camp.
"There's no place like the muse," he muttered and within an eye blink, he found himself staring into the glazed eyes of a beautiful yet formidable looking woman.
"I'm Tony DiNozzo, and I'm here to rescue you," he said and then winced at his choice of a movie quote. However, there was no response from the seated woman.
"Hey, snap out of it," he said softly as he moved closer to her position. Seeing some ropes around her arms and legs, Tony pulled out his ZT knife and went to work.
It wasn't until the last of the bonds were cut that a voice finally emerged from the woman.
"Make it stop," and the voice was full of more pain than Tony could ever remember hearing.
He glanced at her face, and saw that her glazed eyes were still focused on the screen. Knowing that Gibbs was still taking out the insurgents and that he could blink them away if needed, Tony pulled the rifle into position and aimed for the projector that was feeding the images to the screen. A single shot rang out and the pictures blinked out.
"Finally!" and that voice sounded more in command and fitting to the woman in front of him.
"Tony?" She had finally focused her eyes on him for the first time and Tony gave a brief nod, wondering how she knew him. "Where's Gibbs? Never thought I would see you out like this."
"Gibbs is running interference. I need to get you out of here," then Tony hesitated. Teleporting her would be the safest and quickest way to exit the camp, however, Tony wasn't sure if she was in the know.
The muse let out an exasperated sigh. "If you're here, then that must mean they gave Gibbs the go-ahead to teach you. Just teleport us out of here already. I would, but my reserves are depleted. They knew the best form of torture for me."
Tony barely resisted his typical, 'On it, Boss, response to her commanding tone and instead slung an arm around her in support and… inhaled the scent of sawdust as they appeared in the basement.
"Your safe place?" the muse snorted. "Should have known. Bet Gibbs is going to have fun with that one."
As if saying his name called him, Gibbs suddenly appeared in the basement looking no worse for wear.
"Good work, Tony," he said gruffly and Tony smiled blindly when he felt Gibbs' hand pet the back of head like he had done only once before.
"So what now? And do you know me?" Tony questioned the muse who was walking around Gibbs' basement tracing her hands over everything in sight.
"All the muses connected to NCIS know you, Tony. Just some of us know you better than others. And you, Leroy Jethro Gibbs, haven't been telling your new trainee everything he needs to know."
Tony swore he saw Gibbs blush at the words from the muse.
"How long have I been gone?"
"Long enough," Gibbs huffed out.
"Guess I better head back to my mistress then. And don't think I won't have a word or two with her once we've caught up. You can't leave the boy hanging like that all the time, Jethro. He needs reassurance."
"Who you calling a boy?" Tony snapped out without censor. Then his mind registered the rest of her statements. "Mistress? What the hell did you get me into, Boss?" his panicked voice turned toward Gibbs.
"Don't have too much fun with him, Gibbs," the muse said around a laugh and then she blinked out of sight, heading home where she belonged.
Note: And as a bonus for making it this far, here's a little angsty outtake from the Teleportation Verse...
Gibbs sighed as he reached the bottom of the stairs and flicked the single light on to illuminate the man slumped in the shadows of his latest woodworking project.
Eyes full of some deep emotion turned toward him and Gibbs sucked in a breath.
"I panicked, Boss. Probably need to fire me or something. I just- They were pointing the gun at- And then I- Then I was here and wasn't sure what to do. Didn't even know if you..."
"I'm alive DiNozzo. But... We need to get this under control. You can't teleport at the sign of danger every damn time."
"It's not every damn time, Gibbs," and Gibbs was glad to hear some anger in the younger man's voice. "It's only- It's only when you're in trouble," Tony's voice was so soft that Gibbs had to strain to hear it.