Disclaimer: I don't own NCIS or its characters…
Author's note: Apologies for taking forever! I was gone, then busy, then lazy…mostly lazy. So there is an awful lot of unintentional build up of suspense and your expectations are probably insanely high for this final chapter. So I must therefore also apologize in advance for its deficiencies and overall not impressiveness. However, I am finally done and I hope this gives any of you waiting for this last installment some closure. If I have failed to do so, you could try to hunt me down and kill me, but you don't know who I am or where I live so you will just have to stew in your own hatred. That being said…enjoy.
"Congratulations, Miss Todd," the doctor said as he gently placed the bundle into Kate's eager outstretched arms. "You have a very healthy son."
She held the newborn child close to her breast, cradling him gently. She ran her finger tenderly over the petite features of his face. Then unswaddling him slightly, she performed the examination that so many other new mothers had performed before her. She checked to make sure that he had all his fingers and toes, and that all the right parts were in all the right places. Assured of the status of her child, she reveled in the miracle she had performed.
It was an overwhelming concept to wrap her mind around. This living breathing human being, a completely new and unique individual had come from her. She had been responsible for his creation, his existence. He had grown inside of her from nothing, well not nothing, but practically nothing. It was awe-inspiring to consider the knowledge that he grew from just two little cells, and it had taken two. She hadn't been wholly responsible for his existence. Without Tony, she would never have had this child, this miracle that she held in her arms.
Kate looked up at the father of her baby. She had never seen such a wide and genuine grin upon the man's face before. She returned it almost tenfold as she gestured for him to move closer. She gently handed the child off into his arms, her child, his child, their child.
Tony looked upon the child in his arms, his child, his and Kate's. He was officially a father now. Hehad beenwondering when he'd feel different, if he'd feel different. There seemed to be so much hype about it, most of it he had never believed. But now that he held his child, his flesh and blood in his arms, he felt what others had failed to describe to him; the pride, the instant and undeniable bond to the child, the sense of responsibility, and most of all, the pure indestructible love.
Another glance at Kate told him that she was eager to have her child in her arms again. He returned the child to his mother. She deserved to revel in what she had accomplished; she had done most of the work anyhow.
"Have you picked out a name yet?" the doctor asked, interrupting the couple's fawning over the newborn.
Kate looked up, glanced at the doctor, and locked eyes with Tony.
"Yes," she responded.
"Oh, no," Tony said. From their last discussion he didn't like the direction this might be heading. "It was a nice thought, naming him after Gibbs-and god knows I'd love to see the look on his face when we told him-but think of the poor kid. Leroy? Jethro? We can't do that to him!"
There seemed to be no response on Kate's face. It held the same expression of determination throughout his tirade. Tony prayed that the child wouldn't blame him when he got beat up everyday in school. But he surmised that that must bewhy Gibbs was as tough as he was…a boy could only take so many wedgies before he fought back. He watched as Kate turned to the doctor, ready to seal his son's fate, full of taunting and swirlies.
"His name is Anthony Todd Dinozzo," she said firmly, before returning her attention to the baby's father in order to catch his reaction.
"What? Really!" Tony asked, surprised and ecstatic. Kate nodded her head, a bright amused smile upon her face. It was the best gift she had ever given him, besides the child himself. "I love it! Tony Jr.!"
"No!" Kate said emphatically.
"Too Sopranos?" he asked.
"You think?" she responded with sarcasm, but failed to achieve her usually sardonic edge as she continued to smile and exude a sense of blissfulness.
"I think Andy will do fine," she added softly as she once again returned her attention to the child she cradled close to her exhausted body.
They were both tired from the ordeal, the burden of the responsibility, and the knowledge of what was to come. However they both new that they had never been so happy norin love in their entire lives as they were at that moment, and they probably never would be again, so they savored it with every ounce of their being.
Author's final note: I know that "unswaddling" isn't a word. I just like it and wanted to use it.
Author's FINAL final note: HOORAY! I'm DONE!