Well, finally FFnet works again. I don't know if it was the same for you, but I didn't get any alert for about two days, nor I was allowed to do any uploading.
Thank you so much for all you reviews. I'm happy you liked the parting scene!
Two Years Later
Ziva looked at the serious blue eyes staring back at her and laughed softly, "I was right," she said to her companion, "she is taking after you."
Gibbs leaned forward and observed their six-month-old daughter's face, "And I stand by my opinion: she has taken after you, blue eyes aside. She is too pretty to look like me."
"I wasn't talking of her looks. I was referring to her expression. She was glaring at me exactly as you do when you stare some suspect—or arguing co-worker – into submission. I am sure she will be the leader of her class when she is old enough to attend kindergarten." Ziva kissed her girl's little nose, and then turned to Gibbs, "And just to make this clear, there is nothing wrong with your looks."
He tilted his head and just smiled, his eyes and hair shining in the early afternoon sun.
It was the first day of their two-week vacation, and they had taken a trip to a nearby ice cream parlour what was open on Shabbat. The weather was warm but not hot and a slight breeze blew from the sea. It was the perfect day for their little family to take a walk.
Ziva couldn't believe how good their life had turned out to be since Gibbs had moved to Israel. The last two years had been filled with happiness and satisfaction, both in their professional and personal lives. Of course, just as she had predicted, there had been rough and difficult moments, because they both had strong personalities that sometimes could not help but clash, but their relationship had been strengthened by the clashes.
Gibbs had adapted remarkably well to his new life and job. While he technically was Ziva's subordinate, in reality they worked and acted as equals, and their squad was now used to taking orders from both of them.
Their job was challenging and important enough for Israel and its allies' safety that Gibbs didn't regret not being a field investigator anymore. Officially he was still a NCIS agent, but it was understood that he would keep working for Mossad even if his position as liaison officer should be terminated for whatever reason. After all, he was now an Israeli citizen by marriage, and should Vance ever recall him back to America, it would be only for the brief time necessary to resign from NCIS and settle whatever business that needed to be settled. His home was now in Haifa, with his wife and their daughter.
Tali Caitlyn Jennifer Gibbs snuggled closer to her mother's chest as the little family continued their walk, discreetly followed by their security detail men.
Their progress was slow because Gibbs couldn't move faster with his crutches, but there was no hurry. After all, their guests weren't scheduled to arrive until the next day.
As it often happened, Ziva smiled at the sight of her husband walking by her side. As the doctors had predicted, Jethro had regained almost complete use of his right leg, and it allowed him to walk or stand with the help of the crutches. His left leg instead, was damaged beyond hope, but he had accepted it and was no longer bothered by it. He still used the wheelchair at the office or when he needed to move quickly or have his hands free; otherwise he preferred to walk, and he had learned to negotiate even the sand of their beach with the crutches.
"Hey," Gibbs suddenly said, looking straight ahead, "it looks like our guests arrived early."
Ziva, who had been busy observing Tali, raised her head upon hearing her husband's comment and saw the small group of persons standing by the gates of their house.
Four men and a woman, all of them so taken in by their argument they didn't notice their hosts walking in their direction. The conformation and acoustic of the road carried their voices to the approaching trio, so it was easy to understand what they were arguing about.
"…I told you, Tony, we should have called to alert them so they could have anticipated our arrival," McGee was saying, with the tone of someone who had repeated that line more than once.
"Shut up, McGeek, it wouldn't have been a surprise visit if we called ahead…" answered Tony.
"Well, technically it's not a surprise visit even now; they knew we were coming…" Abby's voice interjected as she twisted her black parasol, "Maybe they're out of town. It's such a beautiful day, they might have taken the little Gibblet somewhere…you know, to show her something…"
"She is only six-months-old, Abby, what can they show to her at such young age? The Mossad headquarters? A shooting range?" Tony argued, "Hey Palmer, are you sure this is the right place?"
"Why are you asking me?" Jimmy replied, "I wasn't driving!"
Ziva and Gibbs could no longer contain their laughter and it caught Ducky's attention.
The old M.E.'s face brightened as he raised his hands and voice and exclaimed, "No need to be so worried, children! Mom and Dad are here…"
There was a moment of silence, as all heads turned in Ziva and Gibbs' direction. Then the silence of the early afternoon was broken by a squeal of delight as Abby started running, her arms widened, toward the approaching couple, followed more sedately by the other members of what was still known as Team Gibbs.
Ziva and Gibbs exchanged an amused glance and a smile and went to meet their friends.
Well, that's all. I hope you liked reading this story as much as I enjoying writing it!