Spoilers: 02x22 - SWAK
Disclaimer: These characters belong to DPB, CBS, Paramount, et al.
Gibbs finished emptying the dishwasher, then took a good look around. A t-shirt was draped over the couch. A pair of running shoes with sweat socks tucked into them sat in the middle of the hall. The bathroom wasn't too bad, just overcrowded with more skin and hair care products than he'd ever seen outside a drug store.
Gibbs had his own set of vices but they didn't include sloth.
DiNozzo was a different story. Tony DiNozzo was all seven deadly sins wrapped up in a come-get-me package.
And now, Gibbs knew that he wanted him. Gibbs wanted to bury himself - lose himself in those eyes, take possession of that mouth - he wanted to take everything Tony could give him. He found himself tripping up sometimes, not paying attention, letting things slide in favour of watching Tony and thinking about what he'd do, if he had the chance. It was wrong. It was seven kinds of wrong and Gibbs wanted to drop kick himself straight to hell for feeling like this. He hated himself for hating the way Tony flirted with every woman who crossed his path. Tony could charm them, just like Gibbs himself used to do. Gibbs had been a lot like Tony back when. It hadn't taken much for Gibbs to get what he wanted. But that was then. This was now. And he didn't care what it cost. Gibbs wanted him.
Better stop this, Gibbs warned himself. You know it can't lead anywhere good. Especially now. He'd worked his way back into the kitchen. Maybe a cold drink would settle him down. The weeks-old takeout boxes and the wizened fruit were gone from the refrigerator, leaving a lonely jar of horseradish mustard to stand guard over beer, milk and orange juice. "Hey, DiNozzo," he called. "You thirsty?"
Gibbs waited for a moment, but there was no answer. It figured. Tony had put on a tape of some vintage Ohio State game, so he was probably lost to the world for the next two hours. He got himself a beer and sat down at Tony's breakfast bar.
Tony's eyes snapped open at the sound of Gibbs's voice. Am I awake? He'd heard that voice often enough in dreams. Shifting a little, Tony tried to re-focus on the game. It was the '92 playoffs. In about 20 minutes, Brad Pitt would break his leg. That had been Tony's fault. He'd miscalculated. Made a mistake. Just like blowing into that envelope.
Gibbs, on the other hand, was perfect.
He was always right. Sure, there were occasions when he bent the rules, but they weren't Gibbs's rules. His motives were pure as the driven snow and Tony could see how he kept himself rigidly controlled. The angry outbursts were mostly for effect. Where it counted, Gibbs would give you everything he had and more if he could get it. He was always on. There wasn't a time Tony could remember when Gibbs wasn't on top of every situation, always within earshot, never taken by surprise. And for all Gibbs's seeming industry, he had a patience that Tony would never command. Gibbs was the protector, the guardian, the guy who wouldn't accept any recognition for his deeds. Gibbs was perfect. And Tony wanted to be him when he grew up. If he ever grew up.
The Corps had taught Gibbs how to make quick work of a load of laundry. He set the basket on Tony's coffee table and shook out a T-shirt. The label wasn't one he recognized, like BVD's or Fruit of the Loom. Probably some designer thing, he figured; the cotton felt smooth and light under his hands. Special order, just like those sunglasses. If it were anyone else, he'd say all this was a waste of time, money, and effort, but on DiNozzo, the rich-boy act worked. His looks and his attitude got him into places Gibbs could only fight his way into with a warrant.
And if the package wasn't enough to tempt Gibbs, there was what came inside it. Behind the designer sunglasses and the smart mouth was a guy who worked harder than any three other agents Gibbs had ever known and who wouldn't rest till things were done, and done right. They'd gotten into some pretty deep water but Tony always followed him without a second thought, and pulled them both out a few times, too. He'd heard plenty of chatter from Tony over the years, but not one word of complaint. Not ever. Gibbs knew DiNozzo had his back, no matter what. So he wanted DiNozzo, and he didn't care what it cost? Who was he kidding? He knew exactly what it would cost - Tony's respect. And he did care.
DiNozzo heard ice cubes clinking down the hall. He paused the tape and looked up. Gibbs was there, balancing a stack of T-shirts and socks on one hand and holding a glass of orange juice in the other.
"Boss, you don't have to--"
A look from Gibbs was enough to silence Tony. The juice was good and cold. It made his throat feel less like it was studded with razor wire. He watched as Gibbs put the t-shirts into a drawer. He probably starched them. Probably starched the underwear, too.
Yeah, Gibbs was perfect. Seeing Gibbs holding himself so straight, always the clean Marine, always got to Tony after a while. Got him hot under the collar and a few other places, too. He might want to be Gibbs when he grew up, but he wanted to do him right now. Wanted to take him by surprise for once in his life and give him everything he'd ever dreamed of having. Tony knew he could do it. He was that good and Gibbs was that hot. He could take him to bed and make him forget every woman he'd ever had or even thought about. He hadn't cared enough to do it before, but pneumonic plague and Gibbs were pushing him over the edge. He had to go for it. And he would...just as soon as he could get out of bed.
Gibbs moved a stack of DVDs from the low armchair and sat down. Tony's breathing hitched a little, then became slow and regular. Gibbs picked up the latest report from the Joint Terrorism Task Force from the folder on the floor and flipped through the first few pages. He looked up when Tony mumbled something that sounded like "Gotcha!"
If this was all he could get, Gibbs would take it. He'd kept Tony alive through sheer force of will. He'd keep himself on the straight and narrow the same way.