Here we go... the big one... the one we've all been waiting for.... Aw, just read it.
Disclaimer: Same as other chapters.
Chapter Fifty: Secrets Revealed
The flight back to Andrews Air Force Base had been relatively silent, but Gibbs could feel and see the non-verbal communication between Tony and Ziva. It was electric, in their glances, their eyes, their bodily expressions, but most of all, in the aura that they gave off as they sat so close to each other. When they did speak, Tony mainly asked after Anthony and what he, Kiara and Marcel had gotten up to in Tel Aviv.
Upon landing, the drive back to DC was just as quiet, each person just enjoying being back in each other's company. Tony had begun sharing tales of his escapades on the Seahawk, Jennifer Coates being involved in most of them, and pressured Ziva to divulge details of her time in Israel. Apart from going to the park with her family, she told him nothing, not even how she got the scar on her head, though she suspected that Abby would tell him soon enough.
Now they were standing around the bullpen waiting for everyone else to arrive, which they did in a raucous and animated fashion. Tony had just finished telling the story about the naked sailor running through the mess hall when the elevator opened, Abby running out first, followed closely by Anthony, who run through Abby's legs to get to his father first.
"DADDY!" he cried out as he collided with the older Anthony's legs. Tony laughed and smield widely as he picked son up and cuddled him in his arms, the boy's soft head of dark curls resting underneath his chin.
Abby followed moments later. "TONYYYYYYYYYYYYY!" She threw her arms around them both, engulfing the father and son in a group hug. "You're back!"
"Ohhhhh," he groaned as his weight shifted backwards. "In the flesh."
"For reals?" Abby questioned excitedly. "Like total reals? Like pinkie promise permanent reals?"
"Reassigned to DC, effective immediately," Tony replied, pinkie promising with both Abby and Anthony, who followed suit.
"Good to hear, Tony," Morgan claimed as he headed the group of BAU agents as well as Kalev and Kiara, who all came to welcome Tony back.
"I don't think I could deal with my sister moping around the house anymore," Kalev piped up, walking up to the newly reassigned NCIS agent with Kiara in his arms. "Kiara, this is your Uncle Tony, Anthony's daddy."
"Hi, Uncle Tony," Kiara said shyly and in a very soft voice. She buried her head in her father's shoulder as soon as she did so.
"Very nice to meet you, Kiara," Tony said, touching her cheek.
And so a great group conversation ensued between all of them. Morgan had brought pizza with him and it appeared that they were going to throw a party in the bullpen. Emily was telling Hotch, Gibbs, Rossi and Ducky all about her El Al trip to Tel Aviv the week before. Kalev and Tony were exchanging stories from their travels as Morgan, Reid and McGee listened intently. Ziva was doing the same with Jenny, JJ, Garcia and Abby, but at some point, Tony managed to drag Ziva over to her desk and they slipped away from the party unnoticed.
"I suppose you want to talk about what this means for us now?" Ziva questioned as soon as they were in the elevator. Tony pushed the 'Emergency Stop' button but could not bring himself to say the first few words. Ziva continued the one-sided conversation anyway. "Do we pick up where we left up?"
"Off," Tony corrected instinctively. She didn't even roll her eyes or mentally curse him at this correction. She merely waited for him to continue, which he did. "I don't want to pick up where we left off, Ziva. Not exactly."
"You think that we should stop seeing each other?!" she asked incredulously, allowing her tone to rise several decibels.
"No," Tony said quickly, trying to mentally grasp what he wanted to say before another outburst. "That's not what I meant-"
"Then what did you mean?" Ziva asked, cutting him off in a rage.
"There are aspects of our relationship that need to change, Ziva. The first time we got together..." he paused in thought, unsure of how to communicate what he wanted to say. "I don't even know how to explain it, but when we were together the second time it was exactly the same. We kept it silent. Our relationship was a secret. That's how it started and it's definitely not how I wanted things to end. And I'm going back to how we started out because that's how things continued. Secrets. Lies and secrets, Ziva. That's what became of us."
He cut her off this time, knowing what she was going to say. "No, Ziva, it is important. It's very important. I don't wanna be that guy anymore. I want to tell you everything about me and I want to know everything about you. I kept Jeanne from you, you kept your pregnancy from me for weeks. We both kept our feelings from each other, masking them with hurt and denial.
"And that's just between us. Look at the secrets that everyone else has kept. Jenny nearly got us all killed in LA and beforehand. Kalev had a three-year old daughter and a deadly obsession. Do I need to go on?"
"No," Ziva muttered, staring down at the floor.
"I love you, Ziva," Tony said forcefully, lifting her chin up to gaze deep into his eyes. "And that is the truth. And since I'm on the honest roll, I want to spend every day of my life with you and Anthony. I can't believe I survived four months without you, but now that I know what it's like, I don't ever want to have to go through that again."
"Tony..." Ziva started to say, but her voice drifted off as he continued to speak.
"I know that this could be more romantic," Tony stuttered out nervously as his hand dove into his pocket. "But do you want to know what else I want, Ziva? I want to marry you. And I want you to say yes." He pulled the sparkling diamond ring from his pocket and held it in front of her gaze.
At first, shock overtook her body, but as she recovered, she broke into a wide smile, gazing back lovingly into his eyes. "Ken," she answered softly. "I will marry you, Tony."
Okay, so I have to ask you all to excuse the really long author's note I'm about to write. Firstly, yes this is the end of Secrets Revealed, however, this Thursday on Criminal Minds is a Prentiss-centric episode, titled Demonology, so afterwards, I may write an addition to this story in the form of a chapter based on that ep. So be on the look out for it. It should fit between two chapters in this story.
On another note, yes I am taking a break from writing. Well, I'm trying to. I am nearly finished my other NCIS fic, Prison Break, and a fellow author and close friend of mine are writing a series of Jibbs Pre-Series Europe fics starting with Marseille. The first one should be up in about a month and its working title is Crash Course in Polite Coversation. Our pen name is Future Ex-Wives 5 and 6, so look out for us if you're interested.
Continuing on, I will be writing this fic into a series. I will be writing the third fic in this series during my break (I can't help it) but I won't be posting until I have a break. So around two months. But it will be worth the wait. Yes, they will be case-based fics and no, they will not be regular cases. Expect extraordinary situations, exotic and stunning locations around the world and lots of action, drama and romance.
So until I write again, good-bye my loyal readers. Thank-you to everyone who reviewed and please do review this last chapter, even if you've never ever done it before, I wanna know what you liked about the story, what you didn't and what your hopes and predictions for the next story in this series are. You've been a great reading audience and with that, I leave you.