Disclaimer: I don't own NCIS or its characters…
Author's Note: I guess the verdict was that you wanted more…So here's some more. But I can't guarantee that it will keep coming. It may very well do so though, because I like writing random, humorous stories. Anyway, Enjoy!
Kate shifted position on the leather couch, causing an audible squeak to cut through the uncomfortable silence of the room. She moved to brush the hair back behind her ear and remembering why she hadn't pulled it back that particular day, she hesitated and let her hand fall to rest in her lap.
"So," the elderly lady began from her spot in a chair directly across from the couch. "Ducky tells me that you've been having problems at work because of your personal relationship. Would you care to elaborate on what has brought you here today?"
"Well, Doc," Tony spoke up eager to share about his pain. Whether he enjoyed it because it got him attention or because it caused her embarrassment, Kate wasn't sure. What she did know for sure was that he did enjoy it. "Kate went all Hannibal Lector on me."
The therapist nodded her head and made a note. This was obviously not the response Tony had hoped for, because he felt the need to reiterate. "She almost bit my finger off!" he said, displaying his still bandaged finger.
"Quit whining about it!" Kate snapped. She was sick of hearing it, especially after what he had done to her, which was far more embarrassing. She informed him so. "What you did to me was far worse!"
"What did he do to you?" the reserved spectator asked. She was feeling legitimately curious, even though she tried not to let it show. These two were one of the more colorful couples she had ever come in contact with, and she had seen a lot of crazy people.
The question had startled Kate. When she was scolding Tony, she had forgotten where they were for a moment. Now the look the therapist gave her made her feel inclined to share, despite the embarrassment. She brushed her hair back to display the cause of her anger. "He gave me the largest hickey I Have Ever Seen, without my even realizing it!"
The elder woman had to stifle laughter, her years of training about to fail her, as Kate started hitting Tony on the arm. He grabbed her arm as she moved to hit him again, and their eyes locked in a battle of wills.
"Now, folks, let's not let this situation degenerate into violence," the therapist finally interrupted sternly, having regained her composure. They both turned and looked at the woman as if they had forgotten she was there. Kate composed herself and moved to sit several inches away from Tony on the couch. Again the leather squeaked markedly.
"Now that we've calmed down," the therapist began. "I'd like to ask you a question, and I'd like for you both to answer it as truthfully as possible. Okay?"
The couple nodded their heads, albeit a little reluctantly. They didn't especially want to be there, but they were both sick of the constant bickering. If this was going to help, it was worth the attempt.
"How do you usually resolve problems in your relationship?" She asked in her gentle, even voice.
"Sex," Tony offered after what seemed like little thought to Kate. She was about to object and hit him, but she realized it was true. All of their fights seemed to end with them having sex. Maybe they did have major problems with this relationship.
"What do you think, Kate?" she asked her, knowing that it was important they agree upon the issue.
"He may be right," she conceded. As much as she didn't want to admit it, she was just as much at fault as Tony was for the lack of healthy communication in their relationship.
"I'd like to get a better idea of how you deal with the issues that arise," the therapist tried to lead them into the next step. She wanted a clear picture of the relationship before she dispensed any advice. "Could you tell me about the last fight you had?"
They both tried to think of what exactly was the last fight they had. She probably wasn't referring to petty bickering like they had already displayed in her office.
"I guess that was last night," Kate offered.
"And what instigated the fight?" the therapist asked giving her a gentle, coaxing look.
"This!" Kate said, again indicating the large discoloration of skin on her neck, whilst giving Tony another dirty glare. The therapist gave her a care-to-explain? look, so Kate reluctantly continued. Maybe getting it off her chest would make her feel better, anyway. "He was being all sweet and attentive, and then I go to get ready for bed and when I look in the mirror…"
"P-lease, Kate," Tony interrupted. "Like you didn't know what I was doing."
"Now Tony, why don't we let Kate tell the story. Then you'll have your turn," the therapist cut them both off before Kate could become actively frustrated again. Tony sat back, a perturbed look on his face at being silenced. The therapist urged Kate to continue. "What happened next?"
"I confronted him about it," Kate continued. "He changed the subject back to his finger. I told him that I thought we had already resolved that whole incident. Apparently, we hadn't. The next thing I know we're yelling at each other and I just wanted him to back off so I…I pushed him."
Kate paused, waiting for the disapproving look she thought she'd receive from the therapist. It never came. Instead she just continued to sit there with a reserved yet sympathetic look upon her aging face. It encouraged Kate to finish the tale she had begun. "I think he grabbed my wrists or something, but the next thing I know I had wrestled him to the floor."
"Then we had sex," She admitted. Kate couldn't stop the revelations now. "I think the violence turns me on. It felt good to physically overpower him."
Tony gave her a ravenous look of approval. "Looks like I was right. You are kinky after all, Kate."
"Is that important to you, Tony?" the therapist asked, distracting him from his gloating over the younger woman.
"What?" he asked confused by the question, while simultaneously starting to feel defensive. He didn't think this woman should be attacking him. That wasn't her job. It was Kate's. Her job was to try to help them stop attacking each other.
"Is it important for you to be right when Kate's concerned?" She reiterated. This threw him off. Was there a way he could answer truthfully without looking bad? Probably not. But if Kate could honestly admit to getting hot over rough-housing with him, then he could at least give an honest answer now.
"Yes it is," Tony admitted. He tried to explain why it was, but could only come up with excuses for the behavioral defect. "But Kate always rubs my face in it when she's right!"
"It's okay Tony," the therapist consoled. "I'm not accusing you of any fault. I'm just trying to understand the dynamics of your relationship."
Placated, he nodded his head and sat back farther on the couch. Kate placed her hand on his arm, impressed that he could own up to such a perceived failing. He was trying to participate and that pleased her. She hadn't known where their relationship was headed when it began. She wasn't even sure that it was a real relationship. It had seemed like it was just petty bickering and sex, neither of which she found entirely objectionable. But when Ducky had suggested a visit to the therapist, she had to question what she wanted from this relationship. The conclusion that she had come to was "more."
"I think I'm getting the picture here," the therapist began, interrupting Kate from her introspective thoughts. Tony's thoughts weren't interrupted at all, for he hadn't any beyond how good Kate smelled today and how hungry he was at the moment. "If I may propose…
"You both are very strong-willed people. And it makes sense for your particular career choice. From what Ducky has told me, you hold equal positions at work, but are constantly vying for the attention of your boss and bickering with one another. You both want to be the dominant person in your working relationship. Isn't that the case?" she paused to make sure that they were following her diagnosis. Kate nodded her head, and then proceeded to elbow Tony in the ribs as he stared off into space.
"Since your working relationship was your primary relationship, and your personal relationship stemmed from there…that would explain why this competition for dominance has carried over as well." She completed her interpretation of the situation.
It made sense to Kate. She had never even considered that her relationship with Tony could consist of anything else. That was just the way it was. He harassed her over things…she pointed how stupid he acted, and so on. She wasn't sure why it was that way; it just was.
Tony had tried to pay attention after Kate had jabbed him in the ribs with her elbow, and what the doctor had said kind of made sense. He had always known Kate was the strong domineering type of woman. That's why he was so attracted to her; she was a challenge. He wasn't sure that he wanted the arguing to stop. She wouldn't be half as attractive if she stopped fighting with him. Then again, if their relationship ended, he would never be able to try to crack her again. Not to mention, there would be no more sex or those delicious cookies she made him.
"I would like to make a suggestion," the therapist proceeded to dispense advice. Kate hoped it would be helpful. Tony hoped that it wouldn't be something completely stupid and pointless. "We cannot assume that you can change your behavior towards one another immediately. But I would like for you to try, just try, to be conscious of this conflict within your relationship. When arguments happen, think about not how important it is for you to be the dominant partner, but how important it is for you to try and work through these problems. Getting your partner to concede or submit is not always the best for you. It certainly isn't the best for your relationship."
"Okay?" the therapist asked the couple seated uncomfortably in front of her. They both nodded their heads, Tony without prompting this time. "Well that's it for this session. I would like to see you again in two weeks, all right?"
"Thanks, Doc," Tony said jumping up, relieved to get out of there. Kate rolled her eyes at his eagerness to depart, and got up to follow him. "We'll see you then," she said to the therapist, giving her a smile.
She could hear the couple as they left her office and walked down the hall:
"Tony, I hope you'll actually listen to what she said and follow her advice."
"Yeah. She said that when you try to start a fight with me, I should be the Bigger Man and back down."
"That's not what she meant! If anything that's exactly the problem she was discussing!"
"Right, Kate. Whatever you say…"
"Don't you dare do this, Tony!"
"Do what, Kate?"
"Act like you're being the Bigger Man. Because you know you're not, right? You know you're just being childish."
"Childish? Look who's resorted to name-calling?"
"Name-calling? Who's the one who behaved like a high school age boy and gave me a huge hickey?"
"Yeah? Well, didn't your mother ever teach you not to bite?"
"Bite? I'll show you-Wait, you're not worth it!"
"Trying to be the Bigger Man, Kate?"
Then the voices faded to an inaudible level, drowned out by the laughter that the therapist finally let spill over. She had a feeling that these two would prove to be quite a challenge, as well as a source of great entertainment. She shook her head and tried to compose herself in preparation for her next appointment.