A/N Final chapter. I hope you liked this. Please review.
After the sad task of removing both bodies had been accomplished, the team headed back to DC. Tim gave Gibbs only the time to drive out of the warehouse complex before he couldn't stand it any longer.
"Boss... The knife?"
"How'd you know it would kill him?"
Gibbs shrugged. "The spell fried his witch abilities, you had him in a trap, and from what he was saying, he was a relatively young one, so he wouldn't have been immune to the blade."
Tim's mouth hung open. "But..."
"What, McGee?" He snapped. He glanced out the side window so Tim wouldn't see the half-smile he couldn't contain.
"How do you know so much about demons?"
"One thing I never could stand about Stillwater; the annual demon migration."
Tim continued to stare but remained speechless for the rest of the drive.
"I just don't understand why McGee wouldn't tell me," Tony ruminated. They were back at headquarters doing their paperwork, and DiNozzo was talking, as usual.
"Probably for the same reason Sam was hesitant to tell his brother, Tony. You aren't the kind of guys who would understand," Tim said, coming in and sitting down at his desk.
"You could've gotten fired for this, probie. Secrets don't go over well when we have security clearances at the level we have," Tony admonished.
Tim looked to the side, then back to his computer screen. "Gibbs knew," he admitted softly.
"You told Gibbs?! You didn't tell me but you told-"
"I did not tell Gibbs. He knew. He knows everything."
Tony considered. "True." He looked hard at McGee. "I still don't understand-"
"Drop it, DiNozzo," Gibbs ordered. He walked across the squad room to his desk. "McGee, go home."
"Take the rest of the day off. See you Monday," Gibbs said, sitting down and already rifling through a file.
Tim stared for a moment, then understanding flooded him. He could go be with Sam. After what had just happened, it was everything he wanted in the world. He obeyed.
"Thanks, boss," he said fervently.
Tim quietly let himself into his apartment.
"-no, no, no! Die, you fucker!"
Tim heard the strange voice but immediately registered that it was Dean, probably playing a video game. He hung his jacket and came into the living space. Dean sat at his computer, headset on, playing a first person shooter. Tim went looking for Sam.
"He's in the shower," Dean informed him. Tim turned back.
"Hey, Dean. Didn't want to disturb your game there," he said. He felt as if a cord was tugging him toward his bedroom to get to Sam, and he stepped sideways in that direction.
"This game is awesome, dude! You go...be with Sammy, just don't...not while I'm here, okay?"
"Yeah," Tim rolled his eyes. "Play your game. Dude." He went into the bedroom and closed the door. He stripped down, knowing his clothes had the stink of adrenalin and fear as well as dirt from the warehouse floor on them, and joined Sam in the shower. When the curtain moved, Sam immediately pulled him in and hugged him close. "Gibbs sent me home," Tim offered softly.
"I'm glad," Sam said. His chest grew tight and his eyes filled. "Oh baby, I was so worried..." He choked. Tim tightened his arms around Sam.
"You were? All I knew was a homicidal demon had you," Tim buried his face in the crook of Sam's neck. "Or is that redundant?" His last words were muffled.
Sam coughed a laugh. "Sometimes." He turned his head and captured Tim's lips, kissing him hard. His tongue parted them insistently, reaction setting in and transforming into need. Tim held tight to him for a moment, his body responding in kind, but then pulled away slightly.
"Dean-said not to-while he's here..." Tim gasped.
"Fuck him," Sam pulled on Tim's ass, forcing their erections together between them. He kissed down Tim's neck.
"I'd rather fuck you," Tim replied with a half-smile, and threw caution to the wind. He needed the reassurance of the physical connection to his partner just as much as Sam did.
They kissed desperately, clinging to each other. Finally, Sam gasped. "I need to feel you, now," he demanded. Tim nodded and Sam turned around. Thinking furiously, Tim didn't want to try to use any of the hair products or body washes he had in the shower. The lube was in his night stand in the bedroom... Tim improvised, hoping it would work out. He spit on his hand and used the saliva on Sam, then pushed close before the hot water could wash it away. He hesitated, but Sam wasn't ready to wait and leaned back; in one sharp motion Tim was inside him. Tim went with it. They were both highly stimulated and it wasn't more than twenty strokes before Tim felt his orgasm building. He reached around to jack Sam and was rewarded with his lover's hoarse warning that he was almost there. Tim closed his eyes and gave himself totally over to the sensation of being one with Sam. Sam, safe, in his arms, whole and his.
Sam basked in Tim's loving attention. He was so relieved Tim was here, with him, inside him. He felt himself start to come just as the delicious feeling of Tim doing the same started. He orgasmed, his body tensing and shaking.
The tightening of Sam on his dick while they climaxed simultaneously overwhelmed Tim and he cried out, holding Sam tight against him but bracing against the wall with one outstretched arm to keep them from falling.
They shakily finished showering and dried off.
"I could sleep a week," Sam groaned. Tim offered one of his MIT t-shirts to Sam with a pair of sweatpants.
"You need to leave some clothes here," Tim observed. His uncertainty about Sam's commitment to him had been buried deep with their closeness, and when Sam beamed at the suggestion, he felt more hopeful still. The way the t-shirt stretched across Sam's broad shoulders was fantastic, and with a light-hearted giddiness, part of Tim considered buying his lover shirts a size too small in the future.
When they came out into the living room, they received an awful look from Dean. He pointed at Tim.
"What did I say?" Dean demanded accusatorially.
Tim shrugged and headed for the kitchen. He didn't feel very bad about having made a bit of noise with Sam in the shower. Dean could've kept the headphones on. Sam glowered. "Don't blame Tim," he protested. Dean turned on him.
"Dude, I never want to have to listen to you have sex. Ever. Not with him or a woman or anyone," Dean growled.
"How many times have I had to-"
"Naaa!" Dean interrupted. Tim laughed from the kitchen and the brothers turned.
"Guys, I don't know about you, but I'm hungry. You want pizza?" Tim smoothly steered the conversation away from sex. "Dean, I've got a six pack in here. It's an import, but it is beer."
"Yeah, I'll take one," Dean replied. Tim cracked it and handed him the bottle, Dean nodding thanks. Tim called in a delivery order for a large double meat pizza and two salads, trying to placate Dean a little with the heavy meal and take care of Sam with the healthy side. Only a tiny part of him snickered when he told the restaurant 'double meat'.
In the living room, Tim and Sam sat close on the sofa and Dean rolled the video game chair over. Sam lounged and put his arm on the back of the couch behind Tim, and, as the three men talked, occasionally touched Tim's shoulder or back. Each time, Tim unconsciously leaned closer to Sam.
The pizza arrived and they ate. Dean worked his way through Tim's entire six pack and finally began to notice how touchy feely the other two were getting.
"That's my cue. I'm going to the motel. We can head back home in the morning," Dean said, standing up and stretching. He stared as he received matching frowns from Tim and Sam.
"I'm gonna stay for a while, Dean. I'll get back on my own," Sam said tightly.
"Jeez, Sammy, you were just together like two weeks ago!"
"Dean-" Sam started, his voice sharp. Tim put his hand on Sam's leg to stop him.
"Sam's staying where I can see him for a bit. I almost lost him and I'm not letting him go anywhere for a while," Tim spoke firmly. Dean narrowed his eyes and then rolled them and shrugged.
"Whatever. I may have to start looking for a replacement hunter, dude. You're a part timer these days," Dean complained.
Sam sat ramrod straight on the edge of the couch. "Yeah, maybe you should," he said tightly. Tim's hand on his thigh was the only thing keeping him from jumping up to get in Dean's face.
"Thank you for understanding about the next few days, Dean," Tim said reasonably.
A few more tense minutes passed and Dean departed. The tension drained from Sam, who wrapped Tim up in a tight hug the moment Tim locked the door. Tim buried his face in Sam's neck and just clung to him.
By mutual unspoken consent they went right to bed, sliding naked between the sheets and resuming the close embrace. Intimate skin contact soon led to feverish kisses and additional reassurances each was safe and alive. Tender caresses, sweet words of love, and when Tim rolled on top of Sam and slid into him, an almost painful intensity to their lovemaking brought both to tears. They lay holding each other as their bodies and minds began to calm.
"I don't think I'd survive if anything happened to you," Sam whispered as he pulled Tim close to go to sleep. Tim's eyes grew wide.
"Oh, Sam," he sighed. "I don't know what the future will be, I just know that I will love you every day for the rest of my life, and beyond, if possible."
Sam crushed him to his chest, blinking rapidly. "Always, Tim. I'll always love you."
They lay together for a long time, and Tim's mind ran and re-ran the day, unable or unwilling to settle mentally for fear of the dreams which might come.
"Ziva thinks you're hot," Tim murmured. Sam was taken aback by the sudden comment but knew well how Tim's mind worked constantly and so he just went with it.
"Mm? She's gorgeous, man, isn't Dean more her style?"
"Big, muscular guys get her going, so you, my burly lover, caught her eye."
Tim lay with his head on Sam's shoulder, playing his fingers through the dark patch of chest hair between Sam's pecs.
"Is there anything you miss about being with women? I've gotten so used to you I barely even think about it anymore," Tim pondered aloud.
"Boobs, maybe?" Sam replied, voice indicating it wasn't any kind of big deal. Tim nodded in understanding then looked up at him with the mischievous look in his eyes Sam loved so well.
"I could get fat. I sort of had man boobs," he offered. Sam laughed and pulled him closer.
"No thanks baby, I'd rather have you healthy. I hope for a long, long lifetime together."
Tim swallowed hard at that, his insecurity flaring. "Yeah? Together?"
"I don't want to live beyond your time, Tim...I never did," Sam's voice had dropped to a whisper.
"But... That Night..." Tim's body tensed. Concern-confusion-fear sent adrenalin back into his system and his heart started pounding.
"I was wishing I could die," Sam explained quietly. "I thought I'd snapped and gone crazy and was hallucinating you. I told you, I can't seem to leave living, no matter how many times I die. But I didn't want to live, Tim. Not without you. What I wanted, thinking I had driven you off, was to just lay there and die."
Tim felt all the pain and fear he'd carried since That Night; feelings of inadequacy, worries Sam didn't care as much as he did, didn't need him the way he needed Sam, needing him just to survive, they sheared off like a rockslide and, scraping him raw as they went, vanished into whatever abyss the insecurities that plagued him went when they were disproved. He felt exposed, tender to the point of pain, and the only way to heal was to get rid of it, vomit it out in an excess of tears, and words; he began crying, and he had to have more reassurances from Sam, so he choked out phrases between the sobs which suddenly wracked him.
"I thought - You. You were gonna live - I thought... You freaked - you'd leave- tried...figure a way to survive - Was waiting... You were gonna - Sam, don't ever leave me!"
Sam crushed Tim against himself, wrapping him up in arms and legs and putting his face hard against Tim's. "No! God, oh god, Tim I'm never gonna let you go again. I love you! I love you so much, and the only place I ever feel I belong is with you. Please, oh god, you thought... All this time? I'm sorry, baby. I'm so sorry. I knew I'd hurt you but I never imagined... All this time you were waiting for me to freak out again?! No. No-no-no, not ever, Tim, I'm yours. I'm yours til the end of everything. I wanna live with you and breathe with you and hold you forever. I'm sorry I hurt you, baby, I'm so, so sorry!" Sam cried with him, and this time the tears were healing instead of desperate, a balm instead of an ineffectual band-aid.
Sam's words, the honesty of them, the need to be clear and to be understood, flowed into Tim, soothing the weeks of hurt, reassuring him that no more would come; he was safe. Sam was with him, and he wasn't going anywhere.
They didn't need to go anywhere, since they were both already home.
A/N Thanks everyone for the views and favorites and follows, especially my reviewers leobultler and DS2010. I posted a short flashback story depicting the summer the guys met at Stanford, titled A Long Way to Home, then a second one: Tim's Long Way to Home. I hope ya'll are enjoying this crazy Sam and Tim ride with me! I've put my Sam and Tim playlist on my profile if you're interested in music which inspired these stories. A Candle to Lead You Home has finally been posted, along with the deleted scenes from the writing of the Home series titles Lost along the Way Hom. I hope you'll like them!