Author's Notes: Written for tibbs_yuletide Day 20
Warnings: Slash; Sex
Spoilers: Set in Season 8; However, no overt spoilers for the season.
Characters / Pairings: Gibbs/DiNozzo; past Gibbs/Shannon
Genre / Category: Slash; Angst; Romance
Word Count: 1,301 (part 2) / TBA (total)
Disclaimer: I'm not Bellesario or CBS, so I don't claim to own them.
Summary: Gibbs spends a night with three visitors to find the Christmas spirit buried deep within him.
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Part 01 | Part 02 | Part 03 | Epilogue
"Are you walking away, Gibbs?"
The voice coming from the darkness of the basement caused him to stumble as he walked up the stairs. Suddenly wishing he had one of his guns at hand, he turned around to confront the new intruder.
"Who the hell's down there now?!" he all but shouted as he found the cord for the single light in the room.
"I'm hurt, Gibbs. I know it's been a few years, but I didn't think you would forget me."
"Kate," he managed to get out with a crack in his voice.
"In the flesh… so to speak," she said as she turned a circle in front of Gibbs. "And I have to say, I thought that DiNozzo was always kidding when he said you had a boat in the basement. I guess he does get things right once in a while."
Gibbs just nodded, not trusting his voice. First Shannon and now Kate had appeared in his basement. He hoped that this was just one crazy bourbon induced dream and not a sign of him losing his mental facilities.
"I'm not a dream Gibbs. And you haven't gone crazy, yet. Although I'm still not a hundred percent sure that you need to be crazy in order to want Tony, but that's not what I'm supposed to be talking to you about."
"And what are you here about?" Gibbs asked, finally able to find his voice.
"Same as Shannon was before me," she answered with a smirk.
"And that doesn't tell me a damn thing," Gibbs muttered as he felt the all-to-familiar tug of the world shifting around him.
"Abby's apartment?" he questioned once he could focus on what was in front of him.
"Yeah. The only place to be if you want a good time at Christmas. Of course you've never been, have you Gibbs?"
"She invites me every year, but she knows I won't come. Don't know why she even bothers anymore."
"She bothers because she's Abby, Gibbs. And she'll keep trying because she knows one year you might actually come. How about we go in and check it out?"
Gibbs couldn't say no to Kate, not after how she died, so he just followed mutely through the door.
Inside, Gibbs winced at the festive colors that were strewn over the place. For being Goth, her decorating didn't reflect it. And the partygoers were just as decked out as the apartment itself. Gibbs even caught a glimpse of Jimmy Palmer in an elf suit.
"Now you see why I don't come to these things," he told Kate as he pointed toward Jimmy. "I'd end up wanting to head slap every one of them."
"You're missing the point, Gibbs. You need to let loose every once in a while."
"Don't recall you doing that when you were alive," he snapped back.
"That's because you never came to Abby's parties. Look here," she pointed at a framed picture on a bookcase.
The picture was of Tony and Kate. Tony had a red Santa coat on and Kate was sitting in his lap with elf outfit that left little to the imagination. Though the sight of Kate was a shock, it was Tony that captured his attention more. The Tony in the picture was nothing like the Tony he had today. That Tony was carefree and so young looking, while his had more worry lines than Gibbs had really noticed. It was a shocking difference.
"The last few years have been rough on him," Kate said quietly. "I wish I could have been around to keep it from happening to him. But I couldn't be here," she said, leaving the implied but you were unsaid.
Gibbs shifted uneasily on his feet. "So if all they do is drink and get rowdy, what's so great about these parties?" he asked to change the subject.
"Keep watching," Kate said as she nodded toward Abby who was giving a shrill wolf whistle.
"Thanks for coming," Abby's cheerful voice rang out. "Another year's about gone and of course there will be New Year's Eve to celebrate that," and few cat calls were given in the crowd before quiet descended again. "So for Christmas I'd like to do what we do every year and say something about those who were unable to be here today."
And Gibbs watched in fascination as the guests began to speak in turn of missing loved ones. Some just gave a name while others told stories of those not present. The name that shocked him the most was hearing Tony's name mentioned by McGee.
"Tony DiNozzo," McGee said with a hint of sadness. "He always makes it, but said he wasn't feeling up to it this year. He didn't even do a showing of It's a Wonderful Life," he added dejectedly before the next person in line took over.
Gibbs was still trying to determine why Tony wouldn't be there when it made it back to Abby.
"Gibbs," she said with a sigh. "Every year I try to get him here and another year I failed. So here's hoping for next year and here's to everyone who couldn't be with the ones that love them this Christmas," and glasses were clinked all around.
"Why isn't Tony here?" he turned to ask Kate only to find himself standing in DiNozzo's apartment.
He turned around expecting to see a decked out apartment similar to Abby's, but it was void of any Christmas decorations.
"Figured he'd at least have a tree," he mused to himself.
"He usually does," Kate responded, startling him. "The one time I watched It's a Wonderful Life with him here, he did."
"So why doesn't he now? And why wasn't he at Abby's?"
"Why don't you find out for yourself," Kate said, indicating the open bedroom door.
He walked through with a bit of trepidation. The only time he'd been in Tony's bedroom was the first time they had sex. After that, he'd always made sure they were at his place and that Tony left as soon as they were done. Now, he didn't feel he had the right to enter the other man's room.
Inside, he found the room lit by the glow of a laptop screen and Tony's head ducked in concentration with what he was working on. As Gibbs was debating whether to walk around to try to get a look at the screen, Tony started talking to himself.
"Damn it, DiNozzo," he muttered. "It's not like you haven't done this before. It's just been almost ten years. It's like riding a bike."
"What you talking about, DiNozzo?" Gibbs demanded gruffly, even though he knew Tony couldn't hear him.
"Dear Special Agent Gibbs, please consider this notice of my resignation effective immediately as I will use accrued leave time to carry out my two weeks notice. There, that's not too bad," Tony said with a flourish. "Better than the last one of, 'I'm not letting you fuck me over any more, so fuck off.'"
Gibbs didn't feel himself crashing to floor as he knees gave out. "He's leaving?" he asked brokenly.
"Yeah, Gibbs. I'm surprised he stayed this long with the way you treat him. But then I think he's a bit of a masochist. He's thought about it before, but this time he's serious."
"But he can't leave. I won't let him," Gibbs ground out. He got back to his feet and stalked toward the bed only to find it gone and replaced with his boat.
"Kate! Damn it! Take me back there. I need to knock some sense into him."
"Sorry Gibbs," Kate said with a sad smile. "My time's up. But yours isn't."
And Gibbs saw himself staring at his mostly empty basement and felt as if his heart were ripping in two.