Abby was escorted into the radio station by Tony and was greeted warmly by her co-workers Steve and Amy.
"Stevie, thank you ever so much for covering some of my shift this evening, Ducky has worked so hard, and I needed to be there for him." Abby gave him a big smile and opened her arms to receive the hug she was waiting for and after adjusting her headphones he pulled her close before placing her hand on the microphone and walking towards the door.
"Anytime Abby. You know of course that some of your callers were a little put off by you absence, and I don't think they asked the questions they were calling to ask, but I told them you would be here by the witching hour and your thirty minutes early. Go Figure." He shakes Tony's hand before walking out the door.
The sound of a fog horn had Tony jumping and knocking over a stack of cds.
"Good evening everyone. I hope you all have been nice to Steve tonight. He was very gracious taking part of my shift while I was out celebrating Ducky's graduation. Yup, it was tonight that he got his degree and it's official. Now it's time for me to get back to work so if you have something to chat about give me a call it's time to get Gabby with Abby so while we're waiting for the next few callers to phone in. Here's a word from our sponsors." Abby flipped a switch and gave Tony a grin.
"Okay Tony it's time for you to get back to the bar and have some fun with Ziva, it's Friday, and the night is still young. So come give me a hug and get outta here." Tony followed her instructions and was just about to say….
"Tony, I know I know I'll call if I need you, but I won't tonight, Amy is giving me a ride home, but you can double check with her on your way out if it'll make you feel better." The foghorn sounded again leaving Tony reaching for his weapon.
"Well it's time to get back to business and to say goodnight to all the early birds who are up way past their bed times. I hope your listening right now Ducky, I'm so proud of you, congrats again on getting your degree. When I get home let's have a treat and go out for breakfast. Sleep well."
Amy informed Abby that the first caller of the night was ready and transferred the call to her. "Okay Cynthia get gabby with Abby and tell me in what way is your boss driving you crazy?"
The hours flew by, and she was amazed that she never realized how many people were awake during this time of night. Yes, Abby was a clubber and a night owl, but this whole other world consisted of people from all walks of life.
Amy had already switched control of the next show over to booth three; the booth with a view, it was in the very front of the building and had a huge window so that people could see in as they passed it. Wednesday night was Abby's night in the booth, it was the only night that her show was on earlier in the evening; it provided the early risers with the opportunity to call at their decent hour and air their concerns. Whenever she worked in that booth she felt like she was in a fishbowl and people were tapping at the glass to get their attention. It was a shared feeling amongst all who worked that booth.
"Abby you ready to go darlin?" Amy asked as she walked over to her. Abby nodded her head and Amy could see a flash of pain cross her features.
"Another headache Abby?"
"Yeah, it's just cause I'm tired I'll be fine once I get home." They chatted a few more minutes with Abby switching the subject off of her head as they made their way to the car.
Twenty minutes later Amy and Abby were at Ducky's front door. He decided that instead of taking Abby out to breakfast like she suggested, that he'd make her the waffles that he knew she loved, and often would beg him to make.
"I caught the last hour of the show ladies, and I must say great job with that teenager Abby. Amy, would you like to stay for breakfast I'm making waffles?" he asked as he smiled at the nice woman. Amy declined saying that she had a date with the man of her dreams in her dreams. She gave Ducky a hug and as he was walking her out she told him that Abby had another headache and was trying to hide it.
"Ducky, we were going to go out for breakfast cause this is your party weekend, but you sure know how to wrap me around your little finger. You know I can't resist your famous waffles." She grins in the direction he's in.
"Yes, Abby I heard you on the show last night you always know when I'm listening don't you. Anyway I thought you deserved a treat I know how tired you are and figured you would just fall asleep in your eggs if we went out to breakfast." Giggling at the image Abby shook her head unconsciously wincing at the pain the action had caused.
"How bad is the pain Abigail?" Ducky asked as he sat down next to her.
"Oh Dr. Mallard it's been worse, and its certainly not bad enough that we have to be all formal this morning. She was trying to change the subject when she asked "do I get fresh cream and strawberries on my waffles, I've been a good girl today?" Still with a look of concern knowing that Abby wouldn't tell him anyway he walked over to the ice box and took out the bowl of fresh cream and strawberries that she was so fond of.
"But of course my dearest Abigail."
Breakfast was spent going over some of her callers which led to Ducky profiling a few of them, and as she was giggling at Ducky's last observation the phone started ringing.
"Want me to get that?" Abby asked Ducky.
"No my dear I'm not on call this weekend let the machine earn it's keep. I'd rather finish my breakfast and chat with you before you're too tired to stay awake. I'll return the call later if it's needed." They both were quiet when the machine answered.
Ducky's voice rang through the kitchen. "You have reached the Mallard residence please leave all the pertinent information after the tone." A few seconds passed and the beep came.
"Ducky it's Gibbs I just back into town, I was hoping you were home. Congratulations on your graduation, I tried to get here for it but there was a freak storm that stranded me in Florida overnight. I was heading over to your house to surprise you-" the machine cut him off. Glancing over at Abby, Ducky didn't know what to do or say to her.
Pushing her plate away, Abby got up from the table. "Ducky, my bed is calling me I'm going to head over and get some much needed sleep. Breakfast was wonderful thank you so very much." Holding out her hand Ducky placed her key and stick in it and pulled her into his arms for a hug.
A kiss on his cheek and Abby was gone out the back door to the guest house with the walking stick helping her make the journey.
After Abby had left it had taken Ducky twenty minutes to call Jethro back. "Oh Jethro, where have you been?" Ducky mumbled to thin air while dialing the numbers that would reach him.
Abby made it into the shower before the tears started to fall down her cheeks. She slid down the wall and just sat there crying. She hadn't heard his voice in almost a year, and the last time words were spoken they had crushed her heart, and to hear his voice again talking as if everything was fine in the world just tore her heart to shreds.
It'd taken her a while to shake off some of the sadness that hearing his voice had settled within her; she realized that she really needed to get out of the shower before she turned into a prune. Just the thought of turning into a purple wrinkly permanent prune left her giggling. Abby dried off and slipped into her favorite night shorts and tank top, and headed for the coffin; she needed to feel protected and safe and that was the one place where she felt at home.
Gibbs apologized for missing Ducky's graduation, and wanted to know how everyone was, but was mostly concerned about Abby. He had stopped by her place and learned that she had moved. Her neighbors informed him that she left in the middle of the night and never said goodbye; like a thief sneaking out.
He tried her cell and found out that his call was being blocked, so he rang her at the lab and found out that it was no longer her extension, and when he called the main switch board he was informed that she no longer worked there, and hadn't for almost a year.
Ducky accepted his apology and answered most of the questions concerning the team, and hesitated slightly when he explained to him that she had taken a job and had moved out of her apartment and was staying with a friend. He continued to tell him that if she was blocking his calls she must have her reasons. He was beginning to let his anger brew when he confessed that he wasn't sure of what happened between the two of them, but whatever it was it had devastated her.
Gibbs sighed. "Ducky I don't remember exactly what I said to her that night she came over and I struck out at her so badly. I was pretty wasted and feeling sorry for myself, and truth be told resenting the world knowing that I had to live through the pain of learning my wife and daughter were no longer alive, when it felt like I had just held them and said goodbye. I was angry at the world, and I took it out on her. Duck, there is so much you don't know about her and how scared and vulnerable she was when we first met, and now with all of this happening I just need to talk to her. Please try Ducky, I want to apologize to her. I need to apologize to her."
It was Ducky's turn to sigh. "Okay Jethro the next time I talk with Abigail I will give her your message, but I will respect her wishes regardless of what she decides." Gibbs agreed, but could hear a note in Ducky's voice which left him curious.
"Okay Ducky I'll be in touch I'll probably head in to NCIS on Monday and see if Jenny has any openings. So we'll talk more then."
Ducky agreed and hung up the phone. He walked towards the mess in the kitchen and started to clean up and vowed to go and check on Abby that afternoon as he thought to himself that he was so glad that they were having the team over to have a movie night. He had to prepare the others for the Gibbs invasion.
Author's note: I know I know I'm still working on my other story but like most of you I had inspiration in the middle of the story and Amy told me to just get it down don't wait to start writing and I know she's so busy so Dani is going to help us out on this adventure. Three Cheers for Dani. Hope you like this story. I don't own the characters, I'm just borrowing them for a while.
I have changed what happened after Hiatus and I'm not going to follow the story line. I'm not saying that little things from those great episodes won't pop in at different times to help my story along but it's fanfiction and it's my story so buckle up and prepare to journey along. Hope you like it.