Hi. My very first NCIS fic. I thought it would be longer, but realized it's too simple to mess up with sex, lol. I've been watching Cloak/Dagger a lot recently, and that's where this came from. Rated K, Abby S. & Leroy Jethro Gibbs.

Gibbs Duty

He wondered which of his team it would be tonight.

Gibbs ran a hand over the wood he had just sanded, feeling the warm wood and frowning a bit at its still rough texture. He moved the sand paper over once more, with the grain, his mind returning to the question he'd just pondered. Who would pull Gibbs Duty tonight?

He'd actually come to cherish his team's effort to protect him after certain events, though he'd never let on. He'd fuss and refuse and play his part, but in the end he'd acquiesce and whoever it was would stay, keeping Gibbs company after particularly traumatic days. And shooting Lee had been traumatic, Gibbs allowed. But not as traumatic as speaking to her sister…daughter?...at the end of it all.

Gibbs stilled the paper, licking a thumb before running it across the wood of the boat, happy with the progress now. He resumed his work, rhythmically running the length of the boat bracket up and down up and down…

Ducky would bring food and wine and quiet acceptance. Ducky was with him in the days after Kate, feeding him when he forgot to eat, scolding him for drinking too much, telling him tall tales of Eton and Scotland. In the end he'd work a story around to let Gibbs know he shouldn't feel guilty and that he'd had no choice about shooting Lee. Gibbs already knew that, but it didn't really help. Not yet. So he hoped it wasn't Ducky.

DiNozzo would bring food and beer and a movie and make him watch it, all the time chattering like a magpie about the movie and the team and bringing a goofy natured distraction to his house. DiNozzo had pulled Gibbs Duty after Cassidy was killed. He shook his head. That was actually a mutual DiNozzo/Gibbs night, where they both needed the distraction of mindless movies and chatter. But Gibbs wasn't really in the mood to be distracted like that tonight, so he hoped it wasn't DiNozzo.

McGee would bring food and his computer, setting up both in the basement and just being with Gibbs. The young agent had only pulled Gibbs Duty once, after Pacchi's death and the subsequent suicide-by-cop of Lt. She/Male. McGee had been a good companion that night, but this time he didn't want McGee's quiet and stable company, so he hoped it wouldn't be McGee.

Ziva would bring food and absolution. The Israeli would assure Gibbs that what he did was not only right, but justified. Ziva saw the world in black and white, right and wrong, good and bad. But then again, she had to, living most of her life in a place where one wrong move could get you killed. Gibbs had lived too long to not know there was gray now and then, that not every action could be justified. He glanced at the stairway, seeing the past, smelling the cordite and watching once again as Ziva fired. He hoped it wasn't Ziva. She still had trouble down here, studiously avoiding stepping on the slight stain left on the floor from Ari's blood. He cared too much for Ziva to make her face her own demons while trying to deal with his.

One he was sure it wouldn't be was Palmer. Not that Palmer was close enough to Gibbs to be considered for Gibbs Duty. But Gibbs had seen the medical examiner assistant's eyes tear up as they brought Lee back to NCIS, how careful he was as he shifted the body-laden gurney out of the vehicle to the loading dock for the short trip to Autopsy. He'd watched as Palmer spoke to Ducky, and though he was too far away to hear Ducky's soft reply, he knew what the question had been and what the doctor had said. Gibbs watched silently as the horror then the hate spread into Palmer's face as the younger man glared across the garage. No, it wouldn't be Palmer.

Or Vance. The NCIS director had actually congratulated on a "job well done," extolling Gibbs' actions as "one more success for the good guys." Gibbs had walked away with no comment, his hands clenched to keep him from round housing Vance and stepping on his neck.

Gibbs frowned as he tested the sand paper, finding the grain all but worn down. He shifted away from the boat to grab a new sheet off the work bench when a distinctive sound filtered down through the basement windows. He anchored the sand paper to the wedge as the car engine sputtered to a halt, a few pops echoing in the quiet neighborhood after the ignition was switched off. Gibbs made a mental note to check out that engine before too long lest its owner get in trouble due to that blowback in the future. He returned to the boat, ears cocked for the familiar sound of the front door slamming and the thrump-thrump-thrump-thrump of those ridiculous shoes across his floor. He smiled as he resumed his sanding, a feeling of satisfaction running through him, relaxing his shoulders just a bit.

He was really glad it was Abby.