Scene immediately following the second-to-last scene at the end of the Season 6, Episode 2, 'Agent Afloat'.
Gibbs watched as Ziva holstered the man who had anthrax in his possession into the seat, his hands handcuffed, "You speak, and I will shoot you." She growled, as if warning him, a certain glint flashing in her eyes that promptly made him shut up. Gibbs chuckled and looked down at the ground as he strapped himself into the seat. Ziva took the seat opposite from Gibbs, strapping herself in as well before Tony made his appearance onto the plane, smiling like an idiot. Ziva and Gibbs both had to admit that they had both missed that smile.
"Let's boogie on out of here!" Tony smiled, sitting down next to Ziva, Gibbs noted. He had missed their usual interaction together in the workplace, and he was rather thrilled to have them both back. Tony buckled his seatbelt as Gibbs noticed that they were sitting unusually close to each other, their thighs touching. He almost raised his eyebrow about this, but didn't want to raise discussion. He knew that they had missed each other. They had been slightly less than obvious; Ziva bringing up how she missed Tony every time she talked to him, one way or the other, and Tony just by the way he looked at him when he said her name. They both missed each other, and right now, they just needed to catch up with each other.
Gibbs understood this. He, however, hoped that their relationship would not escalate.
"It's a long ride home, sweetcheeks." Tony said, but Gibbs could barely hear him over the motor, for he was talking a little too soft for his liking, "You might wanna get some rest."
"What? So that you can take pictures of me again?" She asked, crossing her arms and rolling her eyes, "Idiot."
Gibbs remembered the pictures. Well he had seen the pictures. Not like he was actually going to say anything about it, that was, until it really got out of hand, which, at this rate, he had a feeling that was it was about to.
"Hey, it's not my fault you looked hot in those." Tony grinned, and it was time for Gibbs to intervene.
"Hey!" Gibbs demanded, shaking his head at Tony, who snapped his attention from his partner to his boss.
"Sorry, boss. Shutting up now, boss." Gibbs nodded. That's better. He thought as he watched Ziva relax.
She had changed. Since her time in Israel, she had changed. She had slightly reverted back to the 'all business, all the time' Mossad officer that she was instead of the NCIS agent he had turned her into. Correction. The NCIS investigator he had turned her into. The first day that they had been there, waiting until the morning to find Tony, he swore that she couldn't sleep. No, she didn't sleep. It was almost as if she was nervous that he was going to see her after four months of being separated from each other. Gibbs clearly remembered sleeping a total of three, maybe four hours that night, for Ziva kept walking around, trying to 'clear her head' she insisted. She also spent the longest time he had ever seen a woman spend in the bathroom that morning. Gibbs timed it; 1 hour 56 minutes, and 31 seconds. When she appeared, he noticed that she looked the most stunning that she ever did, even in her simple burgundy shirt and her tan cargo pants. Her hair was beautifully done, not flying all over the place like it normally was, and she had actually bothered to put on the make-up she definitely did not need. He knew that she had a 'thing', some sort of weird attraction to his Senior Field Agent, but, if at all possible, the separation made her care for him even more. (If that was possible, because Gibbs swore it wasn't.) Gibbs had a certain attraction to DiNozzo, but it was more of a father/son relationship than the romantic, flirty one that his two agents carried. He knew about the little looks they sent each other when they thought no one was looking, he knew the little grabs that they did when they swore no one was looking, and he knew about the complete and utter fascination Tony had with staring at Ziva's ass…when he swore that Gibbs was definitely not looking his way. He saw everything, he saw right through Ziva's 'thick skin Mossad trick', and he knew that it was only a matter of time before she broke that skin, and they hooked up. Gibbs had to make sure that that would never, ever, happen.
He had changed as well. Ziva was right, he had gotten older. More mature. He could see it in his eyes. Especially with the way he looked at his partner. Before he was sent out to sea, he would look at her like he wanted to jump her right then and there. He looked at her as solely a sex object to him. Jethro knew what was running through Tony's mind every time he sent Ziva one of 'those looks'. On the ship, he noticed that he looked at her differently. There was more of a kind of sincerity, a kinder side in his brown eyes; something he'd never seen Tony give before. It was almost a look that said that he was the luckiest guy in the world, and that he was grateful that he was there next to her. In fact, he was giving her that look right now.
"If you want to sleep, Zi, you can lean up against me, I don't care." He said, giving her that look again. A different look. A look of security, a look of hope and care. She nodded and then carefully rested her head on his shoulder, nuzzling up against his neck. She quickly fell asleep.
"How come I have the feeling that you two have done this before?" Gibbs suddenly found himself asking, and Tony looked up from his sleeping partner and towards his boss.
"Oh, you're still here! Sorry, boss. I didn't even remember…"
Of course he didn't. Gibbs understood. He was too enthralled with his partner to think about him. He should have known better than to bring Ziva along, but then again, he knew that it was for the better. If he hadn't brought the Israeli, he probably never would have heard the end of the string of 'How's Ziva? Where is she? Is she okay?' Questions that were running through Tony's mind.
"I understand." Gibbs nodded as the plane hit a patch of turbulence.
"Boss?" Tony asked, looking up at his boss again.
"Am I still in trouble? For Jenny's death, I mean." Gibbs sighed. He'd rather not talk about her death, if at all possible.
"You were never in trouble to begin with, DiNozzo." Gibbs said, "What made you think that?"
"Uh…it's just that…I'm the last to be brought back. Why?"
Gibbs shrugged, "Don't ask me. Ask the Director." Gibbs watched as Ziva turned in Tony's arms, and she continued to do it, as if she was having a bad dream, "She okay?" Gibbs asked, concern evident in his eyes.
"Yeah. She does this all the time. All you gotta do is rub her back…" Tony said, wrapping his arm around her shoulders and rubbing the small of her back, lightly. She immediately stopped thrashing, "Like that."
"Where'd you learn that?"
"Oh. Well Ziva and I had movie nights." Tony laughed, "You'd be amazed at how many movies she hasn't watched… like Spiderman! Every man in the universe has seen Spiderman!" Tony grinned, "You know what, boss? You should come over! It's a DiNozzo/David tradition." He grinned, "Beer, pizza, and a movie. Sometimes Ziva brings out wine but then-" Tony stopped as he realized the look that he was being given by his boss, "Right. Shutting up now."
"No. Continue. I just didn't realize how much time you two really did spend with each other."
"We're partners, Gibbs. And she's my best friend. Did you know that she never wears matching socks? They always have to mismatch? And did you know that her favorite beer is Corona? And that her favorite movie is The Sound of Music? And that she loves those little Italian chocolates, Ferrero Rocher? Did you know that in Hebrew her name means light, splendor, and brightness? And that when she was a kid, she used to sleep with stuffed animals? She still has one. It's a small bear that she named 'Deror' which means 'freedom' in Hebrew. And did you know that her favorite Italian dish is Tiella, which is a rice dish? And did you know that…" Tony rambled off, listening Ziva's favorite things, from favorite TV show, to favorite shampoo. He smiled. He never knew just how much his senior field agent knew about her. He almost wondered if they had a secret relationship they'd never told him about.
"Tony…Tony…" Gibbs said, but Tony just kept talking. Finally, Gibbs gave up, and he just listened to him talk about her. The hour passed, and Ziva's head still rested against his shoulder, "DiNozzo!" he finally barked, annoyed as he just finished recapping the entire three hours that was 'It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World' and Ziva sat up straight, as if suddenly awoken.
"Morning sunshine," He grinned, pinching her cheeks, "How's my Sleeping Beauty?"
"Fine," She said, swatting him away. She turned to Gibbs, "Are we almost there?"
"We should be landing soon, Ziva." Gibbs nodded, and she nodded as well. Suddenly, Ziva started to scream out, fanning her nose with her hand as she turned with death glares to DiNozzo.
"You do that again, and I swear that I will shoot you!" She threatened.
"It was an accident!" He defended himself, putting his hands up in defense as they all felt the plane jolt as the ground collided with the wheels.
"Well we're here." Tony announced, "You got the guy, boss?" He asked as Ziva undid her seatbelt. Gibbs noticed that Tony quickly followed after his partner, but Gibbs caught his arm. He stared after Ziva, longingly, Gibbs noted, "Yeah, boss?"
"You better make sure she doesn't find those bikini photos." Gibbs said, under his breath, and Tony smiled as Gibbs let go of him, who nodded and then chased after Ziva, "Hey! Zi! Wait up!"
Gibbs gave a half smile. They sure did have a weird relationship.