Disclaimer: I don't own NCIS

Author's Note: Sorry it took me so long to update. Hopefully this is worth the wait. Please read and review.

Ch. 6

Gabriella sits in her bedroom nervous about what her father is going to say. She feels lucky not to have been suspended from school for the fight she'd been in. She's well aware that it's a common punishment for fighting. She received two days after school detention instead. She knows that the fact that she'd been extremely provoked by Melanie into hitting her coupled with the fact that she hadn't been able to get away in spite of trying had probably saved her from that. Melanie had been suspended for six days for bullying.

Tony stands at the stove making spaghetti. He isn't sure what to do with his daughter. He knows she's been through a lot in the last week or so, but he feels he shouldn't condone violence.. He knows he should impose some sort of punishment, but he isn't sure what exactly. He hasn't really ever had to deal with such a thing before.

Finally, dinner is done. Tony puts the spaghetti in serving bowls and places the garlic bread on a plate and the salad bowl on the table.

"Gabriella, dinner is ready," Tony calls his daughter. He had absolutely no intention of sending her to bed without supper. That would be cruel. He might be upset with her, but not enough to deny her food. He wold never do that to her.

Gabriella wipes the tears she's been shedding from her eyes and heads to the kitchen. She is glad that he isn't going to make her go to bed before she ate. Her mother had done that once when Gabriella decided to refuse to eat whatever ever it was she'd fixed. She had no desire to repeat the experience.

Dinner is mostly a silent affair tonight. Gabriella is uncertain about what to say and Tony is deep in thought. He does give his daughter a reassuring look every so often though. After about fifteen minutes, Tony sends her upstairs after she has cleared her plate. Gabriella immediately obeys knowing that to refuse would just bring more trouble down on her.

A half an hour later, Tony heads upstairs. He finally figured out what he needs to do. He isn't as upset as he could be, but he is being as understanding as possible in this situation. Tony knows that she's grieving her mother's death and that had made her more emotional than usual.

Gabriella hears a knock on her bedroom door. "Come in, Daddy," she says shakily. She's been crying again. That's happened a lot lately it seems like. It was a combination of everything in her life that had happened lately that had her so upset tonight. Gabriella knows that while her Dad might be upset with her, he will always love her. That helped a lot in this situation. She knows that he won't send her away.

Tony sits on the edge of her bed with a somewhat stern look on his face. "Gabriella, I first of all want you to know that I love you and nothing is going to change that. I know that today's incident was mostly not your fault. Melanie shouldn't have been bullying you. Still, I can't condone you hitting her," Tony tells her feeling a little hypocritical under the circumstances. He knows he would have done the same thing in her shoes, probably more actually.

Gabriella nods her head. She's trying not to cry because she doesn't want her father to feel bad about having to punish her, but given that she'd been crying just a few moments before, that made it difficult. "Yes, sir," she says after a moment, feeling like she needs to say something.

"Here's what I've decided. You're grounded for two weeks. That means no friends over, no one is to come over here either, no music, no phone, and a half an hour early bedtime," Tony said. He knew Jeanne had varying degrees of grounding depending on the offense and this was pretty basic.

Gabriella looks relieved. She'd expected worse. She thought that most if not all of her privileges would be removed but this didn't seem so bad. She could handle it. It wouldn't be fun, but it wasn't supposed to be. "I understand sir," she said signifying that she understood what she wasn't allowed to do for the duration of her grounding.

"I think that maybe you should rest for the rest of the evening. I want you to finish your homework and then get ready for bed. You can read until it's actually a half an hour before you normal bedtime, but today had been a rough day. This really isn't part of your punishment. I just feel it's a good idea," Tony said.

Gabriella agrees with him wholeheartedly She does ask him to record her one television show that on tonight and he agrees to do so.

At 9:00, Tony heads upstairs to put her to bed. Surprisingly, she's already sound asleep. He tucks her in and says,"Good night, my little love. Sleep tight," Then he kisses her forehead and turns to leave the room. He shuts out the lights and closes the door.