Tony DiNozzo sat at his desk in the squad room of NCIS. Team Gibbs had just finished a murder investigation and they are working on the paperwork. It had been a really long week all the way through. They had finally caught the bad guy, a 24 year-old Marine. He had killed three people before being caught.
Tony is late picking up Gabriella for dinner. He now had visiation with her every other weekend and then dinner on Wednesday night on the off week. At least he'd remembered to call Jeanne to tell her that he would be a bit lat. Tony was almost finished with his report, so it wouldn't be long before he would see his daughter. It had been two years since he had first met her and he couldn't imagine his life without her now. Jeanne had told him that she had a date scheduled that night and asked him to keep her overnight and take her to school the next morning. Tony had cleared that with Gibbs since he would have to come in a bit late because of it.
Jethro watches his agent work furiously to finish his work. He would have allowed him to finish it the next day if Tony had asked, but his Senior Field Agent hadn't said a word about it. Jethro shakes his head.
Fifteen minutes later, Tony finally finished his work. He picks up his backpack and gets ready to leave. He places his report on Jethro's desk. "Can I go now? I'm already late picking up Gabriella." Tony says respectfully. He figures it would probably be okay, but doesn't want to have to worry about being yelled at for leaving without permission.
Jethro simply nods his head smiling. He had become Uncle Gibbs to the little girl soon after meeting her. He'd been the one to carry her out of the warehouse where she had been held by a Mexican thug after being kidnapped. He loved having children around again including Abby and Tim's two little girls. He still misses Kelly all the time but these three girls make it a little easier to bear.
Tony heads out and drives the twelve blocks to Jeanne's apartment quickly. He is certainly glad that he remembered to call her andwarn her about being late. He speeds along not wanting Jeanne to get any more upset that she would already be. Being nearly an hour late, Tony knows Jeanne won't be happy with him anyway, but who know how she would feel if he hadn't called. Tony goes up to the door and rang the doorbell.
Jeanne sighs with relief when she hears the doorbell ring. She'd been worried that she would have to cancel her date tonight, because she'd half expected him not to make it at all. He had not been able to pick Gabriella up twice before under similar circumstances. He'd always called though. She appreciates that. She understands Tony is occasionally unable to leave work at a normal time. Being a cop is a difficult job and sometimes required long hours.
"Good evening, Jeanne. I am sorry that I am late," Tony said as she opens the door for him. Gabriella is standing next to her. She's wearing jeans, and a pink sweater. She had her uniform on a hangar and a small bag containing her other necessities. She also had her bookbag. Gabriella is pretty much all set for her evening with her father. She had finished her homework earlier so she could just enjoy her evening with her Dad.
Tony and Gabriella are out the door a few minutes later. Jeanne calls her date to tell him that she is ready.
Tony drives them to Market Street Pizza, a favorite restaurant. Gabriella loves being with her dad and loves eating out with him. He is easy to talk to. Tony is constantly making her laugh. After getting in trouble at school today, Gabriella feels lucky to have been allowed to go with her dad at all. Jeanne had considered grounding her, but in the end let her off with a warning. She had passed a note in Spanish class. Fortunately, this was a first such offence, so her Mum had been more understanding. Gabriella quickly finds herself confiding in her Dad about this as well. While she didn't want him to be mad at her, Gabriella also didn't want to hide things from him.
Tony finds it difficult to keep a straight face. He had pulled so many stunts in school when he was her age, that this was mild in comparison. He knows Jeanne probably expects him to say something, but since she hadn't said anything, she probably didn't expect him to really do anything. It would be irresponsible for him to laugh at this point he knows.
"Let me ask you this, Gabriella. Do you plan to do this ever again?" Tony asks his daughter sternly, hoping that she will answer correctly.
"No, sir. I won't," Gabriella said looking down at her pizza.
"Good, because if it does, I won't be any happy and I'm sure your mom won't either," Tony said. He knows that she is being earnest with him.
Gabriella nods her head hoping he won't be upset with her the whole night. That would be horrible.
"All right then, we won't have another word on the subject unless it happens again," Tony softened his tone now. He feels he had done his duty as a father by speaking with her about it. Since it was relatively minor, he didn't think he needed to make a huge deal about it, especially since Jeann hadn't either.
Gabriella finally looks up relieved. She had been a little worried about what he would say about it. She knew it had been foolish to do it, but her friend, Olivia had sent her one just minutes before and had not been cuaght. She'd wanted to answer and had gotten caught. Gabriella was now determined that she should tell her frends that she didn't want to be passed notes.
The rest of dinner was nice and quiet. Tony really enjoys the time he gets to spend with his daughter. He's glad that she had finished her homework already since he had been late picking her up. She would need to be in bed at 9:00 according to Jeanne's school night rules. Tony felt that was fair for a twelve year old. He didn't mind the fact that Jeanne expected him to keep that on the rare occasion that Gabriella spent the night on a school night. She was much more flexible on the weekends Tony had her though. They often stayed up until 11:00 or later. Gabriella is always in bed by midnight though.
Tony and Gabriella arrive back at Tony's apartment. Gabriella heads to the shower to take a quick one. She usually takes hers at night since her school, Willow Brook Academy, starts a bit earlier than a lot of school, 7:45. They also got out at 2:30 though. Gabriella is a morning person so she doesn't mind it so much. She loves to sleep in whenever possible though. She does that a lot on weelkends
Gabriella settles in her room with a book, Little House on the Prairie. She enjoys the Little House books very much. She has about an hour before bedtime and she likes to relax in bed with a good book before bed.
Tony shakes his head, knowing the Gabriella didn't get her love of books from him. "Must be from Jeanne," he thought. He goes into the family room and turns on the television. He watches the time carefully knowing that his daughter would need to be tucked in and the lights turned off on time.
After Gabriella is finally asleep, Tony goes to his room and pops in a DVD, The Hunt For Red October. At about 11:00, there's a knock on the door. Tony heads toward it hoping it won't wake up Gabriella.