AN: Merry 'early' Christmas to all my devoted readers! It is with great pleasure that I bring you these special tags. At the end of the episode; my father came into my room and gave me a hug and kiss. He was crying; as was I. And spoke these words… "If I had one wish for Christmas it would be to hug my daughter…" And he did. Not everyone has that chance; and one day he'll be gone and I will never forget that moment. So before I start to cry again…here is the first very special tag…
Gibbs: If I had one wish for Christmas it would be to hug my daughter. That can never be. You have that chance.
Gibbs slipped into MTAC just in time to hear the bell ring and share the final scene with his 'family.' The moment he sat down Abby raced over and took a seat beside him, expressing her happiness with a smile. As the film ended, no one moved a muscle and Ziva swore she heard a sniffle come from Tony's direction. But before she could point it out he'd gotten up and removed the DVD.
"Well folks, that concludes the showing of the greatest Christmas movie of all time…"
"Shared with the sweetest people of all time…" Abby added; a big smile still plastered on her face.
The team slowly but surely filed out to their cars and off to their respective homes. Each of them knowing that this was a night they would cherish forever. But one in particular was more certain than the others; and that one person was Leroy Jethro Gibbs. He arrived at his quiet home; no Christmas lights donning his porch or tree shining from a window, just a simple wreath that Kelly had made in elementary school hanging from his unlocked door. He slipped inside and tossed down his keys before retreating to the one place he never felt alone.
He flipped the switch and raced down the steps to his work bench. He retrieved the frame of Shannon & Kelly and set it out in plain view before taking out the sketch he'd gotten hours before. He pulled out an old frame; dusted it off with one quick blow and placed the sketch inside. He stared at it fondly for what seemed like hours but was only minutes; his eyes darting between the two frames equally. His thoughts were a whirl wind of memories until a voice brought him back to the present.
Gibbs looked up see a bundled Abby standing at the top of the steps. He managed a small smile before nodding that she could come down.
"You left before I could give you your present."
"Abs, I don't need…"
"Nothing, yeah I know." She interrupted before pulling a gift box out from behind her back. "It's nothing really…"
He met her eyes and couldn't help but notice her gaze catching the frames to his left.
"Quinn gave you that huh?" She watched him nod. "It's beautiful. Both of them."
Gibbs hid a smile as he held the gift awkwardly in his hands. Every year she gave him a gift card to his coffee shop; but he somehow knew this would be different. "You could've waited till tomorrow."
She shook her head as she pulled her eyes from the frames. "Um, no. Cuz tomorrow won't be Christmas. Today is Christmas." She glanced at her watch. "And Thank God I made it in time; I only had like 4 minutes left…so you better hurry up and open it."
He pulled up a stool for her to sit down. "Are you cold? I can make us some coffee?."
"Just open the gift Gibbs."
He sighed before slowly pulling the ribbon apart. His mind flashing to the first gift Kelly had wrapped just for him, it was a mess, yet perfect. But was once again driven back to the present by Abby's voice.
"Merry Christmas." She watched with delight as he opened the box to find nothing inside.
He turned the box upside down just in case he was missing something. "McGee didn't eat it did he?"
She shook her head before placing both hands on his shoulders. "What do you get for the man who has nothing and wants nothing?" She watched him shrug and continued. "Everything."
He couldn't help but smile at her logic. "Everything?"
She put her hands down and gestured towards the frames. "Everything." She stated simply before embracing him gently. She expected to hug him for the usual three seconds she always did but this time he didn't seem to want to let go. So she obliged him until he was ready; his gaze fixating on Kelly's smile through the frame. As he eased away he quickly dried an unexpected tear.
She smiled and watched his eyes fall to the floor before lifting his chin up. "Don't mention it; it's Christmas."
He glanced at the clock on the wall. "Not any more…"
She huffed then felt a gentle hand lead her towards the stairs. As he closed the light; a soft moonlight caught the reflection of the frames…
Maybe some wishes do come true, after all.