Disclaimer:I own no part of NCIS or its characters. No profit is derived from this story. It is intended for entertainment purposes only; mostly my own.
A/N This was originally written for Thing-a-thon 2009 on LJ at NCIS_Shared. Prompt:Coffee
Semper Fi at the Coffee Shop
Gibbs dropped his 32 cents in change into the tip jar. After picking up his plain black coffee, he took a sip of the hot, bitter liquid, letting it slide down his gullet and feed his eternal addiction to the caffeinated substance. Just like everyday, his morning coffee was just the tip of the coffee consumption iceberg for the day as it fueled his ability to stay late into the evening at headquarters and return home to his basement where he would work for a few hours more on his boat before finally catching a couple hours of fitful sleep.
While Gibbs couldn't imagine a day without his coffee fix, he could care less about the snobby coffee-shop culture that had become indelibly linked to his favorite brew. Most of the other patrons in the shop waxed philosophical and talked amongst themselves about politics or the latest news as they sipped their mochachinos, double-shot espressos and non-fat, decaf, tall lattes with extra foam while all Gibbs wanted to do was get his plain, black coffee and go to work. No frills, no fuss. No bongo-drums or poetry. Just give him his drink the way it should be:hot and strong. Then he would be on his way.
For the most part, Gibbs usually ignored the talk that normally floated about the shop. The pointless drivel being spouted by some of the supposedly intellectual or beatnik types annoyed him at best and flat out made him angry on most occasions, so he always made it a point to head directly to the door after getting his drink before it began to effect his mood.
But as he walked to the exit on this particular morning, he noticed a young Marine Sergeant with a distinctive high and tight and class B's sitting in a corner, attempting to drink his coffee and read a newspaper while a group of three young men, most likely high-school teens, wearing ridiculous outfits complete with chains hanging from their baggy pants, shaggy hair and skateboards at their feet, laughed as they chewed little pieces of their napkins and launched them through drink straws towards the ever-increasingly angered Marine. As they joked, it was plainly evident that the Sergeant was approaching that point where he might lose his temper with the teens.
"Do you mind?" The irked Marine asked the teens, imploring them to stop before he had to raise his voice.
"Nope." Laughed one of the boys in response, most likely their ringleader, causing the other two to high-five him and guffaw noisily.
"If you don't stop, I'm going to get the manager." The Sergeant threatened, his eyes narrowing on the kids, especially the leader of their little group.
"Oooh, like we're so scared. Oh no, guys we might get kicked out of Starbucks, whatever shall we do?" The same boy sarcastically delivered then fist bumped his two buddies.
"Like, man....Like, my Dad says that, like marines kill babies and rape civilians and stuff wherever they get sent. They're totally like, killing machines and junk." One of the other teens mumbled nearly incoherently, making Gibbs wonder what he had to be smoking or maybe that was just how kids talked these days? He wasn't sure which was worse or which was more troubling, but either way, it grated on his nerves, to hear the word 'like' used so many times in one sentence, especially as the boys laughed and snorted at the Marine's current state of agitation.
"All right, that's it-" The Sergeant got to his feet, his fists clenching tightly. Gibbs could see that the Marine was drawing on his last reserves of patience as he headed for the counter where the manager could be found.
"Watch out! He's marching guys, we better run!" The lead boy called to his friends as the other two laughed and carried on.
"Hey look at me, like, I'm a Marine." The possibly stoned boy sung out as he got out of his chair and began marching at mock-attention around their table "Hut 2-3-4! Hut 2-3-4! Hoo-rah, semper-fi, I'm gonna go, like, kill something now!"
The other two boys roared with laughter as the Marine halted and performed an about face. The look on the uniformed man's face told of how there was going to be a reckoning very soon and it was not going to be pretty.
Finally, Gibbs could stand no more of the display and felt the need to step in before the Sergeant turned the three boys into whimpering masses of beaten flesh.
Sighing a bit at having to take a stand when he would rather be drinking his coffee and be on his way to work, Gibbs made his move and calmly walked over to the table where the boys sat and put his coffee down on its hard surface with a bang that reverberated through the metal table. Glaring harshly into the ringleader's eyes, he addressed the wayward youth.
"I think that's quite enough." Gibbs started coolly and he knelt down, invading the boys' personal space and penetrating him with a deadly look.
"What's it to you, dude?" The boy snorted glancing at his friends. "Why don't you just mind your own business, old man."
"Love to." He replied. "But you're making this my business when you insulted that marine over there. Now, why don't you just do the smart thing and take a hike....Dude." This was usually the point where the people who knew the former Marine sniper would gulp and back away very slowly as to not anger him any further. But, without the benefit of this experience, the kid merely sneered.
"Yeah, right." The boy shot back. "I'd like to see you try and make us, but we wouldn't want you to break a hip now would we?.....Grandpa."
Gibbs smiled. They were toast.
Straightening his back, Gibbs came up quickly and with one hand batted at the coffee that sat in the middle of the table, sending it toppling over, its lid flying off and spilling its still fiery, hot liquid across the table and into the lap of the head kid. Jumping up with a yelp, the boy patted the front of his now hot, wet and soggy pants.
"Oops." Gibbs shrugged. "Guess that's what happens when you get old, your hands just do things that you can't control. Too bad, looks like you're going to have to leave and change those pants before everyone thinks you couldn't make it to the restroom in time. Hopefully, you can find something that fits better than those."
Gibbs was behind the boy before the kid even knew it and had a firm grip on the back of his neck in a manuever Tony often called the 'Vulcan nerve pinch', though he never understood which movie or TV show to which he was alluding. Hauling the kid up, he pulled him to the door with his friends in tow.
"Ah!!!You can't do that, man. I'm going to call the cops! This is assault!" The boy protested loudly until they were outside. "They're going to put you in jail, you geezer. I'm just a kid."
"Oh, Really?" Gibbs asked as he pulled the boy in close to his face by the shirt collar and glowered at him. Speaking low and through clenched teeth, Gibbs pulled out his badge and shoved it into the kid's field of vision.
"Who do you think they'll believe: you or a federal agent?" The other two boys were already taking off down the street without looking back as the leader of the small pack of boys began to make little whining noises from the back of his throat and tears threatened to escape his eyes.
"Go!" Gibbs ordered the now shaking boy. "and don't ever think of coming back here again." The boy nodded quickly and profusely as Gibbs released his shirt, watching the teen run off after his so-called friends.
Sighing, Gibbs realized that he was without his coffee again, having sacrificed it to the kid's pants. He shook his head and moved to go back into the coffee shop to buy another one, but before he could enter, the Marine from earlier walked outside carrying two fresh, steaming cups of plain, black coffee.
"Thank-You, sir. I think you just saved me from a court-martial. I was about to tear those kids' heads off."
"No problem, Sgt. But no need to call me 'sir', I work for a living and was a Gunnery Sergeant myself once. Just looking out for a fellow Marine."
"I appreciate it, Gunny." The Sergeant handed a cup of coffee to Gibbs who took it and nodded thankfully.
"Semper Fi, " Gibbs told him, saluting him with his coffee cup.
"Hoo-Rah." The Marine returned.
Giving the Sergeant a small half-smile, Gibbs began walking off, sipping his coffee as he strolled down the street to work, ready to face a new day.
Hope you enjoyed this, let me know if it was any good or not. I love hearing from y'all. :D