Summary: Gibbs has said no to Tony five times. Too bad he never meant it until the sixth.
The first time Gibbs said no (when he really didn‘t mean it) was when he got knocked flat on his back in Baltimore by an extremely attractive Baltimore detective. He’d taken off running, knowing that the detective would chase him…. What he hadn’t expected was a running diatribe about tube socks in the process. He couldn’t help but give the detective a quick once-over after being tackled and knocked flat onto his back, and had smiled to himself the entire way back to the police station.
Hearing the detective ask what to should call him had brought a twinge to his gut. It’d been years since someone had decided to call him Gibbs so quickly, and he couldn’t help but smile - a smile that grew even bigger when the detective figured out his game plan so easily. It’d been ages since Gibbs had someone willing to challenge him so easily, and even though the detective is obviously trying to set roots down here, Gibbs is determined to have him (for his team at NCIS, he tries to convince himself).
He’s still raw from Stephanie, and before that Jen; the tan line has yet to fade from his wedding band from yet another failed marriage. He likes how DiNozzo doesn’t ask him about it, and he can’t help but feel guilty at how part of him is glad when he overhears the phone conversations between Tony and his fiancée - he knows from experience the sounds of a relationship falling apart. When Tony asks him if he’s being an idiot letting Wendy go rather than quitting his new job, he tells him no (too bad he‘s not sure if he means it or not). The new agent seems satisfied with his answer, and slowly but surely, eases into his new job. Gibbs can’t help but think he’d been selfish with his advice, but Tony was a talented investigator, he told himself, and an asset to the agency. Letting his fiancée go rather than quitting was probably the best option, he thought to himself - besides, a man like Tony wouldn’t have much trouble finding a replacement in DC (too bad it couldn’t be him).
The second time Gibbs said no (when he really didn‘t mean it) was the first time DiNozzo (Tony, he mentally corrects himself) needed a place to stay. The former Baltimore detective had been working under Gibbs for 6 months, and had moved into the first dive apartment he’d found - he and his fiancée were supposed to look for something nicer, but 3 months into Tony’s new job, she’d left him. As a result, DiNozzo was stuck living in a building where the pipes froze the second that winter had hit. Gibbs had caught the other man asleep at his desk at 0700, and Tony had sheepishly told him the story of what happened; shortly thereafter, he’d asked to ‘borrow’ Gibbs’ guest room. Immediately thinking of what was in said guestroom (besides a past that he definitely had no interest in sharing), Gibbs had said no.
By 0900, he’d changed his mind, and his gut told him that he was going to regret it. His gut had been wrong before, though, hadn’t it? He just couldn’t handle DiNozzo looking like a kicked puppy all damn day, and it wasn’t like he didn’t have a couch the other man could use.
Although, after dropping off directions on the other mans’ desk and telling him to pick up dinner on the way over, he couldn’t help but smile back at the other man’s happy grin. His gut twinged again, but he ignored it.
He’d dealt with temptation before, he told himself. He could manage to have his coworker stay with him without being tempted to jump his bones. No problem.
The third time Gibbs said no (when he really didn‘t mean it) was the second time DiNozzo needed a place to stay. In his defense, he had initially meant it. It was probably a bad thing to even bring up what had happened the last time, but he hadn’t been fully caffeinated yet and the yes had just slipped out. Not that what had happened had been his fault, anyways. How was he supposed to know that Wendy would show up and instigate a screaming fight when she accused Tony of sleeping with him, of all people? (Not that he would have minded it, but he wasn’t exactly the home wrecker type - especially after Diane had cheated on him).
This time around, things had been fine at first. DiNozzo had shown up with his suit bag and duffel. A third bag had contained Chinese, a 12 pack of beer, and a bottle of Jack Daniels as a thank you gift. Dinners were eaten in companionable silence, and then Tony would sit on the basement stairs, watching whatever game was on while Gibbs puttered around, not asking too many questions (at least, not after he‘d just gotten grunts in reply to any questions that were asked). Gibbs certainly wasn’t going to comment on how the younger man spent more time watching him than he did the game - after all, Tony had done that since they’d met; why would things change?
Things had changed, however. Specifically speaking, things had changed after Tony had walked in on him in the bathroom, shaving naked after a shower. Tony had all but slammed the door behind him in his haste to get out. Of course, this was after his eyes grew wide as saucers and his mouth fell wide open for a split second as he let his eyes hungrily devour Gibbs’ nude body. Gibbs had merely raised an eyebrow at him, and Tony had skittered out the door, stammering apologies along the way. Things had changed even more after he’d vacated the bathroom and Tony had taken it over. Realizing he’d left his watch in the bathroom, Gibbs had gone to retrieve it, only to realize he’d walked in on Tony jerking off, moaning his name as he brought himself to what sounded like a truly impressive orgasm.
That had resulted in a 10 cup of coffee day due to the fact that anytime Gibbs would look over at the other man, his pants became uncomfortably tight. The silence hadn’t been quite so companionable that evening, and it’d taken quite a bit of Jack for Gibbs to be able to fall asleep - not that he actually slept, of course. Between the mornings’ events and the nights’ whiskey, he found himself kept awake by thoughts of the other man on his knees, bent over his work bench, naked in his bed… When sleep finally came, he’d dreamt of fucking Tony passionately, victoriously shouting out his release as he came. The victory was short-lived, however - he’d woken up to a sticky mess in his shorts and a boxer clad, Sig wielding DiNozzo who’d been drawn upstairs by his shout. He’d thrown his blankets off without thinking, and had immediately glanced down when Tony asked if everything was ok. Unfortunately, Tony’s eyes had followed his, and Gibbs realized too late that not only had he just had a wet dream about his subordinate, but said subordinate was currently nearly naked and getting hard as he stared at Gibbs’ dick, which of course had decided to poke out through his boxers and say hello. Gibbs had yelled at him to get out, later that day Tony decided that maybe he should just get a hotel room instead of dealing with the uncomfortable silence at Gibbs’ place.
That was why Gibbs had meant it when he said no after Tony asked a third time. However, after watching his team nearly be blown up by a jilted Suzanne McNeil, he couldn’t help but remind Tony that his door was always open - that was as close an invitation as the other man was going to get. If Gibbs felt the need to have him close at the moment, well, that had nothing to do with it.
Gibbs would just have to make sure he locked the bathroom door behind him this time. Maybe then, he wouldn’t end up dreaming of a naked Tony in his bed (or in his shower) for two weeks after the other man had left. (Not that he’d mind either way, but the massive amounts of laundry that had resulted had been a complete pain in the ass).
The fourth time Gibbs said no (when he really didn‘t mean it) was when Tony had drunk dialed him and asked him to come over. The whole Jeanne mess had come to an ugly head, this time resulting in Tony being accused of murder again. Having to lie to the woman he’d loved had basically shattered Tony’s heart again, and even though Gibbs longed to help him pick up the pieces, he’d tried to convince himself that the best thing he could do for now was let Tony be. Of course, this line of thinking had lasted about 5 minutes before he found himself in the car, deciding to make a quick stop by the liquor store to pick up bottles of vodka and bourbon for them both. Tony didn’t seem surprised when Gibbs had shown up on his doorstep; rather, he thanked him for the vodka, splashed some in a glass, and raised said glass in a toast to Gibbs. Thinking of the old adage about the road to hell being paved with good intentions, Gibbs sipped his own bourbon slowly, listening to Tony rant and rave about how it seemed like he could never be happy and was destined to die alone. Resisting the urge to tell Tony that it didn’t have to happen that way, Gibbs had helped the younger man into bed, gladly climbing in next to him after Tony asked him to stay. Ignoring the stench of vodka seeping out of Tony’s pores, Gibbs had held him close, telling him he did deserve to be happy (and then biting his tongue until it nearly bled when Tony asked him who’d ever want him). This seemed to placate Tony, and it was only after the younger man had fallen asleep that Gibbs allowed himself to drop a kiss onto his head, wishing that this could be a nightly occurrence (minus the vodka and tears, of course).
The fifth time Gibbs said no (when he really didn’t mean it) was after Tony had asked if Gibbs would help him look for a new apartment upon coming home from being afloat. When he’d told Tony that all of his stuff was currently stored in his garage (seeing as how the other man hadn’t had enough time to pack his place up, and Gibbs had volunteered), the younger man looked horrified, and insisted that he’d get it out of there as soon as he could. Gibbs just shook his head, and told Tony to grab his gear - there was no way he was going to let him stay in a hotel that night. Considering how much he’d missed Tony, he hoped to keep him as close as possible, for as long as possible; however, the other man hadn’t shown a hint of interest in him since the fiasco with Jeanne. As much as Gibbs would rather Tony just stay with him permanently, he knew better than to push the issue; clearly the other man was gun shy when it came to commitment, and there was no way he’d want to stay with Gibbs when he could have his own place, free to entertain whomever he pleased.
Too bad it couldn’t be him.
The sixth time Gibbs said no (and the first time he really did mean it) was when he came home and found his house decorated for Christmas. Taken aback, he’d stood at the door, staring at the tree in shock. When Tony walked out of the kitchen and asked him what he thought, if he hated it, Gibbs didn’t know what to say. Looking at the younger man’s crestfallen face, Gibbs glanced above to the sprig of greenery hanging from the doorway, and finally saw the opening he‘d been waiting years for. Not bothering to take his overcoat off, he strode towards Tony, internally wincing as he saw how the other man braced himself as Gibbs approached him. Knowing a head slap was expected, Gibbs obliged before pulling Tony into a hug, giving in to the urge to breathe in the other man’s scent and relax. When Tony tried to step back from beneath the mistletoe, Gibbs held him closer; turning his head to the side and upwards a bit, he gave in to the urge he’d had for years and finally kissed Tony. When Tony started kissing back, Gibbs let his unrequited lust take over, turning them both slightly so he could press Tony up against the doorframe and get even closer. When they finally parted for air, Tony asked Gibbs if he was joking, and for the first time since they’d met, Gibbs said no - and this time, he meant it.