This story has rattled around in my head and my hard drive since the finale. I've messed with it and messed with it and hopefully it is up to par. As always, thank you for reading!

Follows Rule 51 but doesn't really contain any spoilers….just that Tony comes back from Mexico.

Disclaimer: Obviously not mine. I'm too poor to own them.

A/N: Fluff, smut and a few bad words. Rated M.

The first knock is so soft that she thinks it is a figment of her imagination, but then the knock comes again and she knows who is on the other side of the door even before she looks through the peep hole. He's dressed in garb befitting a tourist, but hardly looks the part. His face and arms are covered in dust and a decent number of cuts of varying size and severity. She opens the door.

Grabbing his hand when he continues to stand in the hallway like an idiot, she drags him inside.

"Tony," she breathes, her voice a whisper across his wind burned skin. Delicate fingers gently soothe the aching flesh of his face before she smacks him lightly with her palm.

"Snap out of it."

And just like that, he begins to feel something. Even if that something happens to be annoyance.

"Your bedside manner leaves something to be desired, David."

She shrugs but does not release her hold on him as she leads him to the kitchen. Her hands are warm and firm as she presses them against his chest and pushes him so that he drops heavily onto one of her wooden chairs. Tapping a finger lightly against her lips she studies him as if considering something important. He stares back. Finally, he breaks the silence.

"You haven't asked me where I was."

She shrugs again.

"I was not supposed to know, otherwise you would have told me," she says. "I am glad you are back safely, however."

She moves to stand between his legs and once more places a soft hand against his cheek before she leans down and kisses him softly on the corner of his mouth.

"Take a shower, Tony," she murmurs softly, her breath mingling with his. "I will see what I have for your wounds."

She turns to grab some towels for him when his voice stops her.

"Are you going to dress up in a nurse's outfit, Ziva?"

"In your dreams, DiNozzo." But he catches her smile as she turns away to hunt down towels. He also takes a moment to appreciate the very tight tank top and not as tight but fairly short pajama bottoms that she is wearing.

He takes his shower as fast as possible because the hot spray burns the numerous cuts and scrapes marking his flesh. He does, however, spend a considerable amount of that short time sniffing her shampoo. He certainly doesn't mind smelling like jasmine tonight.

He finally feels clean again, the Mexican dust swirling down the drain to mix with jasmine suds. Whipping back the shower curtain, he yelps when he spots Ziva sitting Indian style on her counter top looking through a sizable box of what he would guess is The Official Ninja Assassin First Aid Kit.

"Jesus, Ziva! You could have knocked!"

"Oh, sorry, Tony," she smiles at him very sweetly. " May I come in?" She looks him up and down before tossing him a towel and turning her attention back to the arsenal of medicinal supplies in her lap.

Curious, Tony wraps the towel around his waist, steps out of the tub and moves to peer into the mystery box. Besides the usual collection of gauze and ointments, her first aid kit contains syringes, needles, surgical instruments and actual suture. He grabs a sterile packet and raises an eyebrow.

"Suture? Do you even know how to suture a wound?"

"Some circumstances do not allow for a hospital visit, Tony," she says softly, a flicker of something he can not quite define clouding her eyes for a brief moment. She turns her attention back to the box, finds what she is looking for and then hops off of the countertop.

"Dry off," she instructs, "and I will look at your cuts."

He appears in her living room still dressed in a towel, since he has nothing clean into which he can change. That's when he sees his empty backpack on the coffee table and takes note of the gentle swishing of the washing machine.

Ziva is washing his clothes.

Ziva is washing his clothes and tending his wounds. And she just saw him naked in the shower. Suddenly, his throat constricts because everything seems to be coming together in a way that scares the shit out of him.

Scares the shit out of him, is way too intimate…and yet, feels strangely right.

He thinks that maybe he needs a drink. And like magic, Ziva appears handing him a glass filled with enough bourbon to earn even Gibbs' respect. Taking a long swallow to cover the fear of what this might be he turns on the snark.

"Gibbs's bourbon is better," he whines.

"Is that a fact?" Ziva replies and motions for him to sit down on the couch.

Sitting down beside him, she trails her fingers lightly along his arm.

"Would you prefer Gibbs be tending your wounds or me?"

His hand covers hers, effectively stopping its trek to somewhere possibly more dangerous.

"What is this, Ziva?" he queries, his voice a low murmur.

"I am not sure, yet," she replies, her voice equally as soft and low as his.

She returns her attention to the task at hand, which is cleaning up one Special Agent Anthony DiNozzo. He holds himself absolutely still as she uses disinfectants, ointment and gauze to patch him back up. Only one of his wounds is deep enough to warrant an actual bandage, which she constructs expertly.

The last wounds to receive her attention are the bloodied knuckles on his right hand. Dabbing disinfectant along the torn skin she pauses for a moment, his hand resting heavily within her own. She strokes her thumb along his and eventually raises his hand to place a gentle kiss just below his knuckles.

And then she lets their joined appendages fall back to her lap, but she does not let go. They finish their bourbon in comfortable silence, fingers laced together as though it has always been this way. As though they always do this.

Eventually, the glasses are empty and the time to possibly make some bad decisions is upon them. They still have to go to work in the morning and the hours left for sleep are becoming fewer and fewer.

He looks at her.

She looks at him.

Expectations, questions and shared insecurities flow between them like an alternating current.

In the end, it is Ziva who attempts to keep things PG-13 instead of going full on NC-17. She pulls an extra blanket from the linen closet and a pillow from her bed and effectively tucks Tony in for the night on the couch. She kisses his forehead, as his hand snakes out to grab the back of her neck pulling her in for a proper kiss.

She shudders when he finally releases her but somehow manages to leave him and find her own bed.

She wakes long before he finds the nerve to sit down on the edge of her bed. In fact, she woke the second he stood up in her living room, her fingers brushing the cool metal of the weapon beneath her pillow before she remembers that it is only Tony in the other room.

He sits as still as possible, thinking that she is still asleep.

She takes pity on him.

"Lost, DiNozzo?" she says, her voice husky and warm from sleep.

"I don't think so," he whispers in return.

He pulls back the covers and slips into bed beside her, a towel still wrapped protectively around his waist.

He rolls to face her and she does the same. The street lights outside of her window cast a warm glow on her skin. And that is when he notices that she is naked.

"Nice pajamas, David."

She doesn't answer, but scoots closer to him until he feels her wrap one arm around him while the other hand comes up to rest against his chest. His heart is thudding against her palm contradicting the cool expression pasted on his face. He leans toward her and brushes his lips against hers and she sighs against his mouth.

"Is this a good idea, Ziva?" he can't help but make sure he has her irrefutable affirmative that this is okay.

"It is going to happen some time, Tony," she slips her tongue between his teeth only to retreat. "Might as well be tonight."

It is all the permission he needs. His arms crush her body against his own as her own hands reach between them to rip the towel off of his hips.

His hands slide along the smooth skin of her hip pausing at the indentation of her waist, only to keep moving along her ribcage. She relaxes against him and he feels himself relax as well. He smells the jasmine of her shampoo as he presses his nose into her hair. Of course, he smells like jasmine, too, and the scent he smells every day at the office causing him to imagine any number of scenarios involving his partner is suddenly turning fantasy into a stunning reality.

He rolls her pliable body beneath his own wedging one of his legs between hers eliciting a small oh from her as he rubs against her center. She is warm and soft and perfect beneath him and yet, not at all what he imagined. He had never thought that she would be soft like this. And he likes this Ziva even better than the Ziva in his fantasies.

She feels his erection pressing against her belly and she shifts anxiously beneath him, trying to adjust so that their bodies align just so and…

Her eyes snap open as his thumb presses the nerves that send a jolt shuddering through her limbs. Arching against him, she opens her legs even wider allowing her knees to fall to the side as he slips two fingers inside of her body. It's been awhile and she is hot and tight and he groans just thinking about how she is going to feel wrapped around him.

He works his fingers inside of her body and she swears the sex gods themselves have tutored him. Her back arches off of the bed and her hands grip the cool sheets twisting them until it is a distinct possibility she may have to purchase new linens.

Pressure begins to build in her belly and she almost slips over the edge when Tony closes his mouth over one of her nipples. She is not a screamer, despite her claims, but she is not silent, either. Her soft whimpers and cries cause his cock to twitch and suddenly all he can think if is sinking himself deeply inside of her.

One more brush of his thumb and a twist of his fingers and she comes beneath him and it is beautiful to watch. Clutching her tightly against him as he grazes her clit one more time, she shudders and sinks her teeth into his shoulder and bites him. Hard.

"Hey Ziva, don't go all Twilight on me," he teases, but she is lost in a haze of bliss and does not hear him anyway. Or if she does, she does not acknowledge his smart ass remark.

He looks at her and a horribly sick feeling settles in his stomach. Her eyes are closed and a soft smile is tugging at the corners of her mouth and he feels something much more intense than he anticipated. Thinking to distract himself and the pesky emotions swirling through his brain, his chest and his groin, he rolls her sated body under his and slides into her warmth easily.

Her eyes open and she looks at him and he is looking down at her and there is no way this is just fucking.

Damn it.

He moves slowly, holding her eyes with his own and she grows serious as well because this isn't exactly how she thought she would feel, either. Slipping her hands up to cup his face as he strokes within her body, she feels her eyes burn slightly and he breaks the eye contact first by leaning in and kissing her deeply and intimately and how did he ever live without doing this?

She comes once more and is more quiet, more shocked than the first time. He follows shortly thereafter, collapsing heavily and crushing her body with his weight. He can't be that heavy, though, because when he moves to roll away, she clutches him even tighter enjoying the feel of him still buried inside of her body,

Eventually, she relaxes and allows him to roll off of her but not away from her, wedging her body as tightly against his as possible. He presses a kiss against the damp curls of her temple as she drums her fingers his chest.

"Well," Tony says, breaking the silence. "Gibbs is going to head slap me with a brick."

He can feel her smile against his chest.

"I promise you, Tony, Gibbs is like Yoda. He always expected this to happen."

That is a moment he will always remember. A moment about which he will tease her in the years to come. The moment she was naked and made a Star Wars reference. Suddenly the scary sick feeling was replaced with something a little more sweet.

A lot more sweet.

And one day in the future he will realize what the feeling actually was.