NCIS

Monsters And Heroes

Chapter # 19

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Later, Chris walked into Abby's lab. The scientist was sitting at her computer, typing.

"Hey Chris." She smiled, and then gave her a sympathetic look. "You okay?"

"Yeah, just sore. Gibbs has a very strong hand. Look, I'm sorry about getting you in hot water. And I want to thank you for looking out for me, for trying to keep me out of trouble."

"Not a problem." Abby smiled.

"So, I'm guessing you got lectured."

"A short one, and my mouth washed out with soap."

"Huh?" Chris asked in confusion. "He washed your mouth out with soap?"

"Yeah, Gibbs hates to be lied too."

"But you're an adult."

"Gibbs takes on a hands on approach to discipline." Abby explained. "It's not always pleasant, but it beats going through official channels."

"How hands on?"

"Same as with you."

Now Chris was really confused. "Gibbs spanks you?"

"Yeah. Tony, Tim, and Ziva too. Tony would have been kicked out of NCIS a long time ago if Gibbs wrote him up for every infraction."

Then a thought struck the young teen. "So when I'm old like you guys, he'll still roast my rump when I mess up?"

"Yeah he w….Hey!" Abby exclaimed the last word as Chris's words registered. "I am not old."

Before Chris could respond, Tony and Tim walked into the lab. Tony was carrying two large evidence boxes, he glared at Chris as he sat the boxes on the table.

"What's that look for?" Chris asked.

"Your arm wrestling wager." Tim smiled. "Tony was the probie today."

"Serves you right." Chris said.

"For what?" Tony demanded to know.

"For being you." Chris smiled sweetly.

"Upstairs." Tony said, still glaring at her. And trying not to smile. "Abby has work to do."

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Later that evening, Gibbs and the girls went home. Gibbs and Chris were currently cooking dinner, Mandy was sitting at the kitchen table coloring in her Scooby Doo coloring book.

"Can I call you Daddy?" The four-year-old's question caught both Gibbs and Chris by surprise. Gibbs quickly recovered and knelt beside the little girl's chair.

"I would love you to call me Daddy." He smiled at her.

Mandy returned the smiled and said, "I've never had a Daddy before."

"Well, you've got one now." He wrapped his arms around her and Mandy returned the hug.

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A few hours later, Gibbs was working on his boat. He heard a noise at the top of the stairs and looked up to see Chris standing there.

"Come on, Chris." He smiled. "Can't sleep?"

"No."

She walked over to him and he handed her a palm sander. "Wanna talk about it?"

Chris started sanding, trying to get the words in her head to come out. She loved Gibbs, and really wanted him to be her Dad. But she wasn't sure if she could call him Dad, not yet. But she didn't want to hurt his feelings.

Gibbs worked along side the young teen, glancing over at her, but not saying anything. He didn't want to crowd her; he wanted her to open up on her own.

Finally she stopped sanding and looked at him. "I'm not ready to call you Dad." Then she hung her head and whispered, "I'm sorry."

Gibbs laid his sander down and lifted the teen's chin with his finger, until they were looking each other in the eyes. His voice was gentle as he said, "Never apologize for your feelings. I would love for you to call me Dad, but not before you are ready. I want you to be sure you feel comfortable about it, and I am willing to wait just as long as you need to."

"You're not upset?"

"No."

Chris smiled and said, "I'm glad you adopted us."

"So am I, Honey. So am I."

"So, what do I call you?"

"Well, Gibbs is way too formal for a Father and Daughter. How about Jethro?"

"Sounds good, Jethro."

Gibbs leaned forward and kissed her forehead. "Now go get some sleep."

"Yes Sir."

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The next morning, Gibbs and the girls walked into the NCIS daycare which was located on the first floor. They were greeted by a young woman.

"Agent Gibbs." She smiled. "Director Shepard said to expect you." Then she smiled at the four-year-old. "Hello Mandy."

"Hello."

"Hello Chris."

"Hello, Ma'am."

They were given a tour of the place and Gibbs felt good about leaving his youngest daughter there. When Gibbs and Chris left, Mandy was playing dolls with another little girl.

"Now we need to find you a place to hang out while I'm at work." Gibbs said, as they entered the elevator.

"I like the arrangement we have now." The teen said. "I love hanging out at NCIS."

"I know, but it's no place for a teenager. It's a place of work, and some of that work is not suitable for someone your age."

"But."

"Christina." Gibbs said, his voice getting a sterner tone to it.

"Yes Sir." She sighed. Then she brightened a little. "I can hang out at home."

"Not alone."

"Why not?"

"Because I said so."

"That's not an answer."

"You will be home alone some, but not all day. End of discussion."

Chris sighed, but didn't say anything else. She knew it wouldn't do any good.

They entered the bullpen and saw that Ziva, Tony, and Tim were already there.

"Chris." Gibbs said. "Go and stay with Abby for a little while."

"Yes Sir." She said, doing as she was told.

"Anyone know who killed my Petty Officer?" Gibbs asked, sitting at his desk.

"My bet is on his wife." Tony said. "Petty Officer Mills has been dead for six days, but Mrs. Mills never filed a missing persons report."

"Petty Officer Mills was planning on divorcing Mrs. Mills." Tim added. "He spoke with a lawyer the day before Ducky said he was killed."

"According to some of the other wives on base." Ziva said. "Sandra Mills was having an affair."

"Wait are you waiting for DiNozzo?" Gibbs said. "Bring her in, take David with you."

"On it Boss." Tony and Ziva grabbed their gear, then left.

"McGee." Gibbs said.

"Yes, Boss?"

""I need your opinion on something."

"Sure." Tim said, feeling proud that Gibbs wanted his opinion on anything. "What about?"

"A school for Chris. I know she needs one that will challenge her intellectually , but she also needs one where she's with kids her own age. I know she's smarter then most kids her age, and she'll probably be in a grade with older kids."

"There's Westmore." McGee said. "That's where my Sister Sarah went to school. It's designed to keep kids with their own age groups, but let's them learn at their own pace. Sarah loved it. She was always real good in Literature and English, but had trouble with science and math. The school challenged her in the areas she was good at, and offered one on one help with the subjects she was struggling with."

"I also want her to be a kid." Gibbs said, liking the sounds of this school. It was one of the ones that Dr. Goodman gave him a file on, but he hadn't read about it yet.

"Westmore has a lot of fun activities and sports." McGee assured him. "All of the sports and clubs that regular schools have. Each student is assigned a career counselor who makes sure that the student's academic workload is manageable."

"How easy is it to get in? And how expensive is it?"

"Very hard and very expensive." McGee said. "But Chris is smart enough to pass the entrance exams and get a full scholarship. That's how Sarah was able to attend, there's no way our parents could have afforded the tuition."

"Sounds like a place to look into."

"There is one problem though; it has a very strict dress code with uniforms."

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Tony and Ziva brought in the widow of Petty Officer Mills and took her to an integration room. The woman was very nervous, and it only took Gibbs fifteen minutes before she confessed to the murder. Gibbs walked into the hallway and saw Tony handing Ziva some money.

Gibbs walked by them, reaching out and slapping Tony in the back of the head.

"Oww! What was that for, Boss?" Tony whined.

"For betting against me." He said.

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A few minutes later, Gibbs was sitting at his desk when he heard Tony groan loudly. He looked at the younger man.

"The Director just sent out E-Mails." He said. "Our team is ordered to attend a dinner for inter agency cooperation this weekend. Black ties and evening gowns."

"You would look cute in an evening gown." Ziva remarked, earning her a glare from Tony.

Gibbs quickly checked his E-Mail, then stood and headed up the stairs to the Director's office.

"I bet ten bucks he gets us out of this dinner." Tony said. "Any takers?"

"No." Tim and Ziva both said.

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More soon. What do you think?