Chapter 4:

There were 4 bedrooms in Mallard Manor, and sorting out who was to sleep was going to be very interesting.

Ducky obviously had his own room, and didn't realy want to share. Gibbs and Abby were given a room, so that left 2 rooms for 4 people.

"I am not sleeping with DiNozzo" protested McGee.
"We'll I'm not sleeping with Ziva she snores" said Tony.
"No I do not, you are the snorer"
Jackson turned to his son "are they always like this?"
"Only on the good days" smiled Gibbs.
"I know" said Abby "let's draw straws"
"That my dear is a wonderful idea" replied Ducky.

Ducky went to the kitchen and returned with four wooden cocktail sticks. He cut two short and left two long.

"Here we go then. The two of the same length share a room, agreed"
"Agreed" McGee, DiNozzo and Ziva said
"I'll go along with that" said Jackson

Ducky held out his hand to Ziva "ladies first" he said.
Ziva drew a short straw, next Jackson drew a long straw

It was down to Tony and McGee, but who was going to sleep with who.
Tony and McGee looked at each other, chose there sticks and pulled.

"Yes" McGee shouted.
Ziva looked at DiNozzo "You are all mine my little hairy butt"

They had all had a wonderful day, and the night was proofing to be just as much fun. Now that no-one had to drive home everyone took a glass of wine and headed for the Christmas tree.

"Present time!" Abbys said enthusiastically.

She took her place near the tree while everyone sat down and waited for Abby to hand out the presents.
"Before we begin" said Ziva "I would like to make a toast. Thank you for making me feel so welcome, you have been like a family to me"
"Aww Ziva, that's really sweet" Abby said giving her friend a hug "do you want to do your gifts first?"

Ziva agreed and handed out to her friends the gifts that she had bought.
Ducky was very happy to receive a book about 'Autopsies of Famous People' while Abby gratefully received a book on self defence.

Tonys presents were next. They included a bottle of single malt scotch for Gibbs, a voucher so Abby could get another tattoo and the entire collection of 'The Man From U.N.C.L.E' on DVD for Ducky*.

McGee hoped that his presents were received with as much appreciation as the others had been. For Ducky he had chosen to have a first edition of both his books leather bound and he had signed them, and for Ziva he had chosen the brand new, limited edition,personally engraved, Letherman Multi-Tool.

Next Abby handed out her gifts. She had taken great care in not only choosing the gifts but also in wrapping them. Each gift was wrapped in a different paper. In tartan wrapping paper Ducky received a medical history book. While in red paper with gold ribbon Tony received the 'Tales of Casanova'. Somehow she had managed to find wrapping paper that was decorated with computer components. This present of course was for McGee and not only did it suit him but was actually a clue to what was inside. She had given McGee several sticks of computer memory as he was building himself a computer. In green wrapping tied with a different coloured green ribbon Ziva received a gift certificate so she could get a tattoo.

"Abby you will come with me, yes?" Ziva asked
"Of course, we can make a day of it. You have to celebrate getting your first tattoo"
"Who said it would be my first"
"O really" replied Tony "I haven't seen one"
"You have not looked hard enough then"
"Ooo is that a challenge Zeeva" Tony said over pronouncing her name
"No Tony it is not"

Abby then handed out present that said they were from Gibbs, but everyone knew that Abby had chosen and wrapped then on his behalf.

They spent the next hour or so drinking wine, laughing and examining there gifts. As the hands of Duckys Grandfather Clock drew closer to midnight everyone decided to head to bed and hope that at least some of the snow had gone by the morning.

Ducky, ever the gentleman suggested that the ladies use the bathrooms first, as he had two Ziva and Abby took one each. Ducky told them to help themselves to anything that they needed. Tonight made Ducky appreciate his mothers obsession for keeping a well stocked bathroom for those 'just in case' moments that never actually happened, well that was until tonight.

The gentlemen made there way to there assigned bedroom.
"You sure you don't want to swop McGee?"
"No thanks Tony, I'm sure Jackson and I will be just fine"
"You can not get rid of me that easily Tony" Ziva said.


Abby entered the room she was due to share with Gibbs.

"Hey" she said closing the door behind her.
Gibbs, who had his back to the door, dropped something.
"Did I just make the unflappable Leroy Jethro Gibbs jump?" she laughed
"No" he said a little quickly "I was just thinking"
"About what?" Abby asked as she moved to sit on the edge of the bed.
Gibbs looked at her and smiled "about you?"
"Nothing bad I hope"
"Depends on your definition of bad"

Gibbs bent down and picked up the small box that he had dropped when Abby had walked in the room. He turned on his knee to look at Abby. Abby looked at him but couldn't understand the look on his face.

"I never thought I'd be this again, and it's thanks to you Abbs, and if you accept me I'll try to make you as happy as you make me" Gibbs opened to box and revealed the ring to Abby.
Abby screamed and threw her arms around Gibbs neck almost knocking him over.

Their bedroom door burst opened and everyone in the house rushed in. When Abby was in trouble then everyone came running. The team entered the room to find Gibbs on the floor and Abby in his arms crying.

"What's wrong Abby?" a concerned McGee asked.
"What's happened?" DiNozzo said.
Ducky made his way through the small crowd "Abigail my dear what's wrong"

Jackson spotted the empty ring box on the floor, looked at his son, smiled and nodded.

"Nothings wrong" she sniffed "everything is perfect, Gibbs just proposed"
"Oh is that all" DiNozzo said.

Everyone turned to leave; they got as far as the door when realisation struck.
"what did you just say Abbs" McGee said, looking at Abby a little shocked

Gibbs stood up, held out his hand and helped Abby stand. Abby wrapped both her arms around his waist while Gibbs held her waist.
"I asked Abby to marry me, and she accepted"

Abby look at Ducky "I told you this was the best Christmas ever"

* AN : David McCallum played Illya Kuryakin in The Man From U.N.C.L.E (1964-1968)