A/N: this fic is inspired by Evanescence's song: my immortal, this isn't a song fic though. I don't know if this needs a tissue warning, but this is a sad fic.
Gibbs stood stoically by the open grave in front of him. His team was standing behind him comforting each other. Gibbs didn't want their comfort, the hand Ducky had earlier placed on his shoulder had been shaken off quickly and no one had attempted to touch him since.
He could feel the air vibrate with the presence that haunted his every waking moment and turned his once pleasant dreams into nightmares. He turned from the grave, unable to look at the coffin that was visible at the bottom of the seemingly endless pit, he knew he had to turn away, if for no other reason than to suppress the urge to throw himself down to join his love.
Gibbs remembered the first time he'd been woken in the middle of the night by the sound of his mate sobbing silently in the living room, his heart had broken at the sight of the younger man sitting on his couch, sobbing his eyes out and at the same time trying to be quiet as not to wake his sleeping lover. Jethro had just sat beside the other man and pulled him into his arms and held him, wiping away the tears.
It had been the first time Gibbs had gotten a glimpse at his lover's mind that was plagued by nightmares and fears. He'd never know before how fragile the other man was.
After that, the nightmares seemed to come regularly and all Gibbs could do was help him fight the fears and demons and afterwards hold him and wipe away the salty tears. He'd thought they'd get through it together, that as time would pass, the ghosts would fade.
Gibbs never expected the nightmares to win. The younger man had never told him what they were about, but he could make a few educated guesses, though it didn't matter anymore. The fact was that the young man had wounds that never healed and they ate him alive.
One day Gibbs had come home from work, expecting to see his beautiful lover waiting in the living room for him, but what he found, was something that would forever haunt him. He'd gone to find him when the man hadn't been in the living room and once he reached the bed room, his world shattered. There on the bed was his beautiful lover, lying so peacefully with his eyes closed and hands crossed over his chest, a note saying 'I'm sorry' lying next to him along with two empty pill bottles.
Jethro remembered how he'd taken in the pale skin and blue lips and surged to gather the man in his arms. He held the cold body as he cried and pleaded for the man to come back, to take a breath and to live. But it was already too late, the demons had won and the spirit of the man was long gone.
Gibbs took one final look at the grave that was now being filled and turned to walk out of the cemetery, blocking out the sound of Tim comforting Abby, who was sobbing. The sound of Ducky whispering comforting words to Kate and Palmer. He just kept walking until he reached his car and then he just drove home on autopilot.
He walked in and took off the suit he'd donned for the funeral and went into the basement where he took out the bottle of bourbon and took a healthy swallow, relishing the burn of the liquid and the fact that it made his feel something else than the numbing pain in his heart.
He looked up at the boat and remembered the first time he'd tasted the skin of his lover. They had been fighting their attraction for a long time until the younger man cornered Gibbs in the basement and had ended up with his back against the ribs of the boat having his mouth ravished.
Gibbs felt anger built inside of him, he took a sledge hammer and started to hit the helpless boat with it, trying to block out the image of the two men working together on the boat and the smile the other man had always sported when he watched Gibbs over the frame of the boat. He continued with a steady pace, destroying the boat until there was nothing left but a pile of splintered wood.
And suddenly the anger drained from him and he collapsed in the middle of the destruction, the tears he had been trying to keep at bay all day finally sliding down his cheeks as images of his love smiling and throwing his head back with laughter filled his mind, followed by the strangely serene image of him lying on the bed, finally in peace, finally somewhere where the nightmares couldn't reach him.
His vision blurry, he picked up the gun he hadn't even realized he'd been carrying and looked up to see his lover standing by the stairs smiling warmly at him. He smiled his first smile since he'd discovered his lover's body and raised the gun and whispered "I love you Tony" Before he pulled the trigger.