The Sweetest Boyfriend
Disclaimer: No one is mine.
A/N: Written so Healer: Sanina will give me the Tony fic she's writing. Note that I'm a Gibbs/Abby shipper, and therefore Abby/McGee killed my brain.
Summary: Abby agonizes over flowers and why she is not a normal girlfriend.
It's late. Not late in the traditional sense of the word (it's actually ridiculously early). You're sitting at your kitchen table with a phonebook, scrolling through what seems to be endless lists of names, addresses and phone numbers, looking for one particular set of identification. If you were to stop and think about what you're doing, you'd probably realize what a stupid idea this entire thing is and quit while you're ahead. Or at least not as far behind as you were yesterday. Of course, that would imply the possession of some sort of social skills, which you are sorely lacking at the moment. Or at least, in the normal world of the mundane human race.
It's too late to call, anyway. Or too early. And it really is a stupid idea. He's not going to have any less of a good day if you don't do this. And it's not like you two are even on speaking terms at the moment. You pick up the phone, dialing a number that you haven't had to look up for five years.
"Talismaniac," an overly-cheerful voice greets you from the other end.
"That's scary. No human should be quite that excited to talk to a customer."
He laughs. "Yes, but my customers pay me massive amounts of money for weird shit. I'm always excited to get more money."
"Tell me I don't want to buy flowers for McGee." You've always been straight and to the point unless you're explaining your latest finding to Gibbs, and you figure why stop now?
He doesn't say anything for a long moment, and you hear him typing on the other end of the phone.
"If you're IMing with him I swear I'm gonna—"
He cuts you off before you can show off your talent for making evil, violent and completely workable threats that usually result in the receiver of said threat being very much dead. "I'm not. I'm tracing your call to make sure this is actually you."
She glares at the phonebook because he can't see it. "Hardy har har."
"I think it's sweet."
"If you say cute…"
"Yeah. That too. It shows your caring for him."
"You gave Tony flowers."
"I almost got him twenty-to-life! And they were black."
"What, did you spray paint them?"
"They came painted. They'd better of not used spray paint for the amount they cost me."
He laughs. "Ooo, DiNozzo cutting into your bank account?"
You close the phonebook with a satisfying thump. If it just so happened that a sheet of paper got caught in it, clearly marking the page on which all the local flower shops are listed, well, that's entirely not your fault. Stupid piece of paper should learn to move.
"I'm not gonna do it."
"Sure you're not. The fact that you have a sweet, wonderful, caring boyfriend whom really would love it if you sent him flowers will not have any affect on you." You can hear is smirk through the phone.
"I will hang up on you," you threaten, prepared to do just that if he doesn't shut up.
"If you hang up on me I will be forced to believe that you did so only so that you could call the flower shop."
You glance at the clock. "They're not open at 04:00 in the morning."
"You could always order online."
"I'm not doing it! It was a stupid idea!"
"He'd really, really like it."
"We're not speaking. I don't care what he'd really, really like."
"Which is why you were planning on sending him flowers. Because you totally don't care what he thinks or would like or if he loves you."
You seriously consider hanging up on him at this point, but if you do you'll only sit there in front of the stupid phone book until it's time to get ready for work, which will do absolutely nothing for your fragile mental state at the moment and will probably screw over your work day, as well as your currently amicable relations with all the agents that ebb and flow in and out of your lab. Instead you push the phonebook off the table and find great enjoyment of the loud thump it makes hitting the floor.
"You love him," Gabriel says in a teasing singsong from the other end of the phone line.
"I hate you, you know that? And I don't love him."
"Sure you don't. I'm not even going to bother bringing up the flowers again."
You clench your teeth, glaring at the tabletop because the phonebook's on the floor and Gabriel's in New York. "Enough about the flowers!"
"I'll shut up if you admit you get depressed every time you two break up."
"I do not! It's the whole not getting laid that makes me pissy."
You pick up the phone book from the floor because you're going to have to do so eventually, anyway, and open to the page that lists the names of the flower shops because you want to see what the piece of paper that's stuck between the pages is.
"How long have you two been not talking this time?"
You feel like killing something. Or throwing up. "Gabe—"
He cuts you off again. "Different subject?"
"Yes!" you respond vehemently, crumpling the paper which turned out to be an invitation to the NCIS annual charity ball. The only way you'd ever go was if Gibbs ordered you too, and if you know Gibbs he's intending to spend the evening of the event in his basement with his boat, and therefore can not order you to go without an astounding display of hypocrisy.
"How's your non-relationship with Gibbs going?"
You do hang up on him this time, because the last thing you need is to be thinking about Gibbs. Especially at four in the morning when everything up to and including jumping out your apartment window seems like a brilliant idea. You run your finger down the list of names. What the hell.
You get into work early, planning to lock yourself in the lab all day and barricade the doors. Ziva comes in ten minutes before the work day starts and you make idle chitchat and are even nice to her for the soul reason that she brought you expensive coffee with whipped cream. You don't see another human worth more than a passing thought until McGee comes down, all smiles and happy cheer. You're pretty sure that if he had a tale it would be wagging about now.
"Hey, Abby." He gets points for not throwing himself all over you as soon as he entered the lab. At least the boy understands that just because you sent him flowers everything may not be cool between you.
"Hey, McGee." It's a versatile salutation, open for interpretation. You didn't call him Tim, but you didn't refuse to acknowledge his existence. He can take it however he wants.
"I got your flowers." And there's that little smile he reserves just for you when he's playing the sweet, normal boyfriend. Not the smile for when you and he go clubbing and you're hitting on every hot person to walk past. Not when the two of you are geeking out in front of you're computer with Chinese food and a good rock CD. Not when there's a case, and he is strictly Agent McGee.
"I'm glad you liked them," you tell him before he's actually said if he liked them.
"So…everything's good between us?" he asks tentatively, taking a few awkward steps nearer to your chair.
"Sure." You know that if you keep letting him get away with making mistakes the relationship will be no better than the psychologically abusive relationships you've witnessed a million times before. However it's partially his fault, too, you rationalize. He can't let you keep getting away with the emotional rollercoaster you lead him on. You know that your up down pattern of emotional mood swings when combined with your obsessive nature when something interests you and your 'ooo, shiny!' attitude when it doesn't, makes it impossible for you to participate healthily in a long-term relationship. McGee, however, seems determined to try and make it work. Even if he has to shove together your shattered pieces into a form that doesn't fit and is misshapen and deformed.
"You wanna do lunch?" he asks, and you really aren't hungry but it's the normal girlfriend/boyfriend thing to do, so you nod and pretend to be enthused about the idea. "You're paying."
He smiles like you've just given him a million dollars instead of a strained lunch date, and steps forward to help you with your jacket. Once you've buttoned it up and are locking your computers, he steps in front of you and catches you in a sweet, gentle kiss.
You return it because that's the proper girlfriend thing to do.
A/N2: Yes, Gabriel has been popping up in quite a few of my NCIS stories. I just need him as a geek pal for Abby who isn't McGee. And I'm too lazy to make up an original character. You'll get over it. Also, how'd my first published story in second person go?