A/N: Some might remember me saying that I was NOT going to be writing any fluffy Tate stories anytime soon.
I guess I lied.
I blame it all on receiving season 1 NCIS DVD and reading a certain novel that will be alluded to. What that novel is, well, that is for you to figure out :). Anyways, pure fluff folks. AU, as it is written completely ignoring Twilight (evil, evil episode!) and the events following that.
I hope you enjoy! Please, leave a comment.
Disclaimer: If anyone actually believes that I own any of this, they should NOT be walking around without men in white coats accompanying them everywhere.
The first time they had worked together, he had realized that Tony could potentially fall in love with the young woman. She was pretty and strong, willing to (god forbid) stand up to Gibbs himself. Unlike many women that he had worked with, Agent Todd was not one to fawn over Tony DiNozzo, or swoon at his smiles.
And unlike most times, Tony had not attempted to make a move on the female agent.
Gibbs had thought little of it at the time, for he was to busy trying to solve a murder than to pay any attention to a possible romantic relationship between a woman he did not even know and an agent known for his womanizing ways. Looking back, Gibbs wondered if Tony somehow knew, deep down, that Kate Todd was a woman that he would grow to care about, and that she was someone who he could possibly fall in love with. Later on, Gibbs would wonder if that was why Tony did not attempt to lure the pretty woman into his bed.
Gibbs realized that he must have acknowledged this fact somewhere in his mind, for it wasn't merely his short-lived attraction to Kate (make that very short lived) that made him a bit reluctant to hire her. It was the idea of possibly dealing with two of his agents dating.
He had quickly overcome his own brief attraction to Kate, finding her to be more of a daughter to him than anything else. Yet he had observed her carefully. He had seen the way she would work so easily with Tony, how she would know exactly what buttons to push to elicit a reaction from him. Not that Tony didn't deserve it, of course. In fact, it was rather pleasing to see a woman knock the haughty man off of his pedestal. He often had to keep from laughing whenever he caught the shocked look on Tony's face when Tony realized that a woman had just gotten the better of him.
Nevertheless, despite all of the teasing that went on between the two, Gibbs never thought that they had the potential to be anything but colleagues. Well, perhaps in the back of his mind the idea was still there, but it would be some time before that thought would take center stage in his mind.
They fell into a comfortable pattern, one that Gibbs liked. Tony would come in bragging about something or other, and Kate would throw something at him, be it words or some inanimate object. Or Kate would come in uncharacteristically happy and Tony would throw out crude insinuations about just what she had been up to that had made her so happy.
Their banter had started off rude, or that was how Gibbs thought of it. For quite a while, it felt as thought they were a big family, Tony, Kate, Ducky, Abby, and he. Tony and Kate were like the bickering siblings, always fighting and loving every minute of it. Later, McGee would join their small 'family', but by then, the dynamics had started changing.
He couldn't pinpoint when exactly their banter went from purely 'sibling' rivalry to something more, but it had. It was in Tony that Gibbs first started suspecting feelings. Tony had started working a bit more; as a result, he no longer had quite so many dates. And when he did look at a woman, it was usually a brunette. Next, Kate had started acting oddly around Tony, especially after she had been in quarantine with him. Actually, it was there that Gibbs finally put the pieces together. Seeing the two agents so worried about each other had convinced him that his initial fears had come true. The impossible had occurred.
Kate and Tony had fallen in love with each other.
Later, Kate would refer to the following events as a 'Marius and Cossette' actions.
Gibbs didn't bother asking what that meant, figuring she was referring to the rather large novel that she was toting around with her (later, Tony told Gibbs that he had made the stupid mistake of asking, and as a result, he had had to listen to Kate talk for hours about 'the best book ever').
It had started painfully slow, their budding romance. Gibbs was in no way a romantic man, nor did he care much about the romantic tendencies of his agents. Yet it was like attempting to ignore the white elephant in the room: the bottom line was Tony and Kate were falling hard for one another, and neither seemed to feel the need to do a damn thing about it. Tony had all but stopped dating, and had started spending his spare time staring at Kate. Kate did the same thing. Neither agent seemed to realize this.
And then one day, all of the tension between them was gone. All of the sexual buildup, the tension felt when two people, so in love, yet so oblivious of this fact are in the same room. It just vanished. Tony and Kate were laughing again, their familiar banter returning. This time, however, there was a note of affection in the banter. It wasn't the somewhat childish and cruel dynamic of before.
This worried Gibbs at first. He did NOT need two dating agents. Interoffice dating tended to complicate things, made agents make bad decisions.
Abby had been the one to bring it to his attention that Tony and Kate had not worked as efficiently when they were spending their time mooning over one another without making a move. Gibbs had then asked if they were really seeing each other, or in love with each other.
Abby said she was sure they were, but she didn't know for certain.
Gibbs decided there was one way to find out for sure.
So he sent Tony and McGee to a strip club to 'interrogate' some 'witnesses'. Of course, McGee had strict instructions to report all of Tony's actions to him.
Tony hadn't done a thing. He hadn't looked at any women; he hadn't asked for any phone numbers, he hadn't hit on anyone.
In short, he hadn't acted like, well, Tony. Upon Tony's return, Gibbs had carefully watched Kate as well, looking to see how she reacted to her (lovers?) assignment.
She had given Gibbs a quick death glare, and then had turned her attentions to Tony.
"Remember what's going on DiNozzo." She told him. Tony nodded. Gibbs got the feeling that she was not just talking about the case that they were working on.
Gibbs was suspicious of what was going on between the two, but drew no concrete conclusion. A few glances and the dissipation of the tension did not constitute evidence, and Gibbs would not be happy until he actually saw something that would prove to him that the two were more than friends. Oh, he knew without a doubt that Tony was in love with Kate at this point. That much was evident, especially when Tony stopped hitting on other females. He was quite certain that Kate felt the same way, for it seemed to him that lately, whenever a woman flirted with Tony, she would become more agitated than usual. Of course, Kate was somewhat better at hiding her emotions then Tony, so it wasn't until later that Gibbs would figure out how she felt about Tony.
He found out that piece of information at the same moment that he finally obtained the proof he needed of their relationship. It was in Abby's lab room that it happened: he had walked in and found Kate and Abby talking. They apparently didn't notice him, for they kept up their conversation. Gibbs was about to interrupt when Kate said something that stopped him.
"…You don't understand Abby! I have fallen in love with the worst person possible!"
"Anyone would be better that him. He is rude and obnoxious and…"
"Good looking and sweet?"
"No…yes…I don't know. I can't figure him out. One minute we are fighting, the next minute we are kissing. One moment he is chucking paper airplanes at my head, the next sending me flowers."
"Kate, you should give him a chance. McGee told me at the club he didn't check out any women, and you said so yourself: he hasn't hit on anyone in a long time."
"What if he is just playing me? What if he is just trying to trick me?"
"Playing you? Are we back in high school now? Really Kate, lets be real: do you really think that Tony would go through all of this trouble if all he wanted was to sleep with you?"
"I know. I'm just so scared. I want so badly to open my heart to him, but what if he breaks it?"
Gibbs finally decided to make his presence known.
"He isn't going to break it." Dear god, he couldn't believe he was playing matchmaker to his two agents. What had he come to? Nevertheless, he continued, "He loves you Kate. Any one can see that." Kate and Abby both stared at him in shock.
"Who are you and what have you done with our Gibbs?" Abby said slowly.
"I'm just tired of DiNozzo doing crummy work while he stares after Kate like a lost puppy. So for all of our sakes Kate, put him out of his misery."
Gibbs didn't know what happened next. It must have been good though, for six months later, he watched agent DiNozzo marry agent Todd.
And a year later, he looked over their newborn child.
"Uncle Gibbs?" Gibbs looked down as a little girl of four looked up at him with bright green eyes.
"Up!" He smiled as he hoisted the child up onto his lap.
"Uncle Gibbs, did mommy and daddy fall in love at first sight like Cinderella?" the child asked, her head tilted in innocence. Gibbs smiled as he looked at the little girl, who was so much like her mother and father.
"Well, I knew the moment I met your mother that your father was going to fall in love with her…"
A/N: I told you it was pure fluff. As I said, I alluded to a novel. Care to take a guess as to which one (or even argue with me over if what I said was accurate)?
There might be two companion pieces to this piece, through Tony and Kate's point of views, though I wouldn't stake my life on that. It all depends on what time I can make.
Please, leave a comment as always!