Am I the only person who thinks that the characters of Special Agent Anthony DiNozzo from NCIS and Captain James T. Kirk from Star Trek 2009 are eerily similar? Here's a quick little crossover; not so much a linear story as it is a bunch of oneshots that together spell it out.
It wasn't a sight he ever thought he would get to see firsthand. After all, the United States capital had been destroyed by a tsunami a few dozen years before he had been born. Holovids were the only record of what the capital had looked like in the early twenty first century.
So standing on the roof of the building they'd been called to, he couldn't help but stop and stare at the distant sight of the Washington Memorial, the white spire gleaming beautifully in the morning sun.
Such was his concentration on memorizing the view that he barely heard the voice dragging him to awareness.
"DiNozzo, you planning on starting your sketch in this lifetime?" a gruff voice asked beside him.
Unusually somber, the man currently known as Anthony DiNozzo kept his eyes trained on the landmark.
"You ever realize how lucky the world is right now, boss? To exist in this time period, to deal with such simple things as international politics and domestic terrorism," he breathed, his mind ghosting over the interstellar wars that would sweep up the planet in the future, the complexities of cross-species cultural relationships that would make peace in the Middle East seem a cakewalk.
The grey haired agent beside him seemed to calm and still at his mood, concern and curiosity overriding his anger. Instead, he turned his own gaze out towards the capital, the dead Naval officer behind him momentarily forgotten.
"It's hard to imagine politics and terrorism as simple," Leroy Jethro Gibbs responded, his words lacking heat. "But I guess there will always come a time when the problems of today pale with what the future faces."
Tony nodded, his eyes sweeping over the rotten sectors of the city around them, concrete and wood crumbling to time and neglect.
"You ever wonder what you would be missing, boss? To die now and not know what the future beyond your years holds?" the younger man asked, wincing internally.
That sounds like something Spock would say, he mentally scolded himself, realizing that his introspection was coming close to shaking his mask.
Gibbs turned an unreadable look towards him, one eyebrow arched. Tony couldn't help but make the comparison to his Vulcan friend and laughed aloud.
"Never mind, boss. Didn't get a lot of sleep last night. So, sketching, right?" he diverted, turning away from the panoramic view.
"Yeah, sketching," Gibbs affirmed, his eyes darkening slightly with curiosity at his second's antics. "Get to it."
It was the first time Tony made Gibbs suspect something was different about him, but it wouldn't be the last.
"What do you mean you can't trace it?" Gibbs snapped at his Gothic lab technician.
Beside him, Abby Scuito typed quickly at her keyboard, her own frustration at her failure obvious.
"I just can't trace it! I can't tell where it's coming from or where it's going to. I wouldn't have even known about it except for SETI's alert. There's some sort of interference on here that I've never run across before. It doesn't seem like a cellular call or even a satellite call. I don't know. The interference seems almost like it's astral, like from solar winds or a coronal ejection," she explained as she stared hard at the screen.
On Abby's left, Timothy McGee was typing at another computer, his brows knitted together in confusion.
"Boss, I can't trace it, but I can hack the signal. Piping audio through now," he said as he turned up the volume on the speakers.
The trio stilled as the voices came through, slightly scratchy and hazy, static bursting every few seconds.
"You still haven't found it?" a male voice asked, exasperation coloring his Oriental-accented words.
Another male voice said, "Keptin, perhaps the location is not where history records it?"
A voice that seemed almost familiar, except for the dark edge and the poor quality of the sound, answered, "Mr. Chekov, you have a valid point, but I don't see any other options than to continue the search. Bones, how are the vitals on the return vector?"
A snappy voice immediately filtered through, "For God's sake, Jim, I'm a doctor, not an astrophysicist! Ask the bloody green-blooded hobgoblin!"
There was a split second of silence before a smoothly calm voice echoed through the tap.
"I estimate the return vector has 87% remaining power, and that number is dropping steadily at approximately one percentage per minute, Captain. I advise you return before that rate drops below 20% to ensure the safety of your travel."
Again came that unnervingly familiar voice.
"Understood, Mr. Spock. How's the old girl doing, Mr. Scotty?"
A voice tinted with a decidedly Scottish brogue answered, "Dilithium chamber is stable and the engines are functioning normally, Captain. Hull integrity is stable. I cannae promise the core will last much longer on our end, though. Mr. Spock and Mr. Sulu have already estimated sixty minutes before we reach minimum power for safe return, sir."
There was a sudden burst of klaxons on one side of the transmission.
"Captain, our signal is being tapped. Location has not been compromised. Sensors indicate signal is being hacked on your side," a female voice spoke quickly.
The man referred to as Captain immediately said, "Radio silence for one minute, your time. Lieutenant Uhura, please determine if there's anything I can do to my signal to scramble it. Otherwise, this party's going to get real interesting. Kirk out."
Gibbs stared at the screen, nodding his head towards McGee. Getting a received nod back, the older agent knew the conversation had been recorded. Glancing at Abby, he asked his first and only question.
"Who did you say alerted you about this signal?"
The despondent Goth turned suddenly, her eyes wide as the realization hit her.
"SETI. The Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence."
Gibbs rolled his eyes.
The three waited the designated minute, then longer, five minutes stretching into ten, all waiting with bated breath if communication was reestablished. A sudden noise at the back of the room startled all of them, though Gibbs would never admit it.
"Sorry I'm late, boss. It took a little longer than I expected to get the evidence logged in downstairs."
Gibbs turned to see his senior field agent looking at him with an apologetic smile. He seemed harried, but Gibbs put it down to his obvious desire to avoid the former Marine's legendary temper.
"Call me next time you're late, DiNozzo."
The other man nodded, running a hand through his hair.
"Sure thing, Boss."
And if Gibbs thought there was any similarity between Tony's voice and the voice on the transmission, he didn't say anything.
"What the hell do you think you're doing, DiNozzo?" Gibbs fairly screamed.
But the younger man didn't answer as he continued to follow the wires of the bomb strapped to McGee's unconscious form. Tony grimaced slightly as memories tugged at his mind, his subconscious calling up a similar situation on Tarsus IV. Only then, he hadn't known what he was doing.
This time, he did.
So it was a simple thing for the genius to figure out which wire to cut. Finished with his task, he sat back on the balls on his feet, crouching beside his friend.
Without raising his gaze, his tone was rough as he said, "Bomb's disarmed, boss."
Gibbs stared at his partner, shock and anger clearly written on his face. He knew that tone, but couldn't place it.
"What the hell is wrong with you? Since when did you get the idea that you're expendable like that? You think you can just throw your life away like that? Your ass belongs to me!" Gibbs snapped.
Tony's head jerked up, his eyes staring straight at and straight through Gibbs. The older agent froze, his ire draining as he saw unconcealed terror on Tony's face.
But Tony was back there on that beautiful, haunted world. He was watching his aunt, his uncle, his cousins, and every friend he'd made suffocate inside the gas chambers. He was watching them pound at the unbreakable glass that separated them from life, their fingernails scrabbling over the walls.
And he was fighting tooth and nail against the guards that held him, trying desperately to either rescue his family or join them.
Then that voice came, that one that still haunted his dreams and always would, from here until the far side of eternity.
"You think I'm going to let you throw away your life like that?" The malevolent voice chuckled humorlessly. "I don't think so. Your ass is mine."
The way Kodos had make good on his promise that evening consumed his nightmares.
"Tony? You okay?"
The voice was so soft that Tony didn't register it at first, but he ruthlessly squashed his emotions under years of practice. He immediately dropped his eyes and searched for an excuse.
"Yeah," he muttered, hating the burning in his eyes. "Just thinking about what would've happened if the bomb had gone off is all."
For all the secrecy of his current mission, he'd forced himself to be as honest as possible with Gibbs. He had no problem with lying to Bones about an injury, or spinning a wild, tall tale in an attempt to get Spock to reveal some kind of emotion. He had no problem with misdirection and avoidance.
But for some reason, he found that lying to Gibbs, even about something as restricted as the Tarsus IV incident, made every bone inside him ache.
And for the first time, Tony started to think about how hard it was going to be to leave his team when the time came.
Ziva David had been missing for thirty two hours.
Gibbs' temper was short, McGee's eyes were red, and Tony was simply glaring at the wall in front of him as he listened to Abby detail the reasons she couldn't trace Ziva's implanted tracking device.
"Wherever she is, there's some sort of metal messing with the signal. The kidnappers might also be using some kind of scrambler, because when she was taken her tracker started bouncing all over the world. And unless someone knows how to get from Australia to Central America in two seconds, they're using a scrambler."
Tony rolled his eyes and bit his lip.
"I'm also worried about the signal strength. Either it's wherever they have her, or there's something wrong with subdermal chip, because even though I can't trace the signal, I can measure it. And it's getting weaker, Gibbs," Abby whispered, angry tears of frustration marking her cheeks.
Gibbs silently pulled her into a one-armed hug, though his own anger and helplessness were clearly marked on his usually stoic features. Sitting at his desk, McGee risked a painful glance at his watch.
"We have three hours, Gibbs. If we don't find her by then, she's dead," he murmured past a lump in his throat.
Hearing the kidnappers' voices echoing in his head, their gloating tones as they described the sting that didn't happen, Tony made a split decision.
He dropped into his chair and began hammering at his keyboard, eyes darting to take in the information he'd called up on multiple windows. Hearing his fingers tapping away, the entire team turned to look at him.
"Tony, what are you doing?" Abby asked, her technological enthrallment leading her to stand behind Tony's chair.
The agent didn't answer but instead began combing the data he'd pulled from Abby's lab, finding the signal parameters she'd generated, and a map with the bouncing trace appeared as a new window on his screen. The signal snapped from Milan to Paris, to Morocco to The Grand Caymans, to Anchorage and to Sydney.
"I tried everything, Tony. The signal's untraceable," Abby stated, her voice confident; beside her, McGee nodded his affirmation, having worked on the trace himself.
Tony shook his head and murmured as he typed, "I don't know which one's gonna kick my ass more. But Bones'll sure kill me."
Gibbs frowned and stepped forward, his gaze sharp.
"What did you just say, DiNozzo?" he asked in a deadly still voice, the name ringing a bell somewhere in his mind.
Catching himself, Tony schooled his expression before glancing up and covering smoothly.
"I said she'll break my bones and kill me, boss, if I don't find her. You know how our resident Mossad assassin feels about death and all," Tony quipped as his fingers flew over the keyboard.
Abby watched him work and her mouth fell open.
"How did you do that? Gibbs, he managed to isolate the scrambler's frequency and decrypt it. Her tracker's accurate now!"
Tony let his finger's rest on the keys for a moment as McGee snatched the location of the tracker and spoke quickly into his desk phone. Risking a glance up, Tony found Gibbs staring at him with something in his gaze that the younger man didn't quite like.
"I'll tell you sometime," he promised quietly, knowing what was on the other man's mind.
Gibbs said nothing for a moment, dragging a long gulp off his ever-present cup of coffee, before he nodded.
"I'll hold you to that promise, DiNozzo."
Gibbs stared silently at the large plasma in Abby's lab, hating the intermittent bursts of static. It had been two years since SETI's first alert, and as soon as they had received another one, they'd immediately begun hacking.
"Anything yet, Abby?" Gibbs asked as he watched his two resident technical geniuses typing furiously at their respective keyboards.
"It's taking more time, Gibbs, than the last signal SETI picked up. There were no special frequencies or anything last time. This time…I don't know. There's something blocking us."
Gibbs nodded at Abby's words, then suddenly asked, "Where's DiNozzo?"
McGee glanced up for a moment and responded, "You told him to drive Mrs. Decker home after she made the positive ID on her son. He left about twenty minutes ago. She lives in Baltimore, Maryland. It's about an hour there and an hour back."
The older agent nodded and took another sip of his coffee, though a small nagging in his gut made it almost impossible to taste the brew for a moment.
"Ah-ha! Got it! I'll skip the techno-speak, Gibbs. Here's the audio," Abby exclaimed triumphantly as she flipped a switch.
There were a few more seconds of silence before the scratchy static gave way hazy words.
"Mr. Spock, can you search the records and confirm my suspicions?"
It was the same voice from two years ago, though it was whispered and much harder to distinguish.
"Certainly, Captain. Accessing the database. Please wait momentarily while the data is retrieved." There was a slight pause, and then the stoic voice returned, "Pardon the query, Captain Kirk, but are you all right?"
This time there was definite pain in the Captain's voice.
"I'm just fine, Mr. Spock."
There wasn't even a split second pause before another voice growled, "Your vitals are pretty weak, Jim. Now tell me what happened or I'll shove a hypospray into your neck so hard it'll be permanently bruised."
There was a choked laugh, and the man identified as Captain Jim Kirk responded, "Resorting the threats over an unsecure line, are we, Bones? Not nice to kick a man while he's down."
The older-sounding man seized on that slip.
"Down? You're down, Jim? Dammit, I'm a doctor, not a timeshifter! I told you to be safe while you're there!"
There was a weak cough, then, "No worries, Bones. I'll be fine. Got a top notch team here. As soon as I get that information from Mr. Spock, I'll get some help."
There was a computer sound in the background, almost covered by a burst of static, and that unperturbed voice echoed through the hack.
"Your suspicion was correct, Captain. The item is where you suspected it to be."
There was a halfhearted laugh and the Captain replied, "What did I tell you, Mr. Chekov? Your idea was certainly with merit."
A second of static passed before what sounded to be a young man gathered the courage to speak.
"Yes, Keptin. Perhaps we should pull you from ze past – "
"Mr. Chekov!" the Captain fiercely interrupted. "I don't believe I need to remind you that this is an unsecure transmission that is more than likely being hacked."
"I'm sorry, Keptin. I will remember, sir," the young man said, obviously chagrined.
"Good. Status of the ship and crew, Mr. Scott?"
Gibbs felt his gut tremble.
"Same as when you asked a minute ago, Cap'n. Of course, one minute for us, two years for you…" the man trailed off.
"Don't need to remind me, Mr. Scott. Just thank Uhura for creating these speech filters. Steady as she goes, then. Radio silence for thirty seconds, your time." This time there was a decidedly pained gasp from the Captain. "Need to get some medical attention…"
"Captain?" asked the smooth voice, though Gibbs swore he could detect concern in the man's seemingly solid façade as the Captain's voice trailed off and he didn't respond.
"Jim? Bloody hell! His vitals are all over the place. When the hell is he going to learn?" demanded a pissed man.
"Mr. Spock, there appears to be a signal hack on the Captain's side, same source as the prior hack. Shall I disconnect?"
"Indeed, Mr. Sulu."
Then the voices gave way to the static again.
Before Gibbs could say anything, McGee's cell phone rang loudly. The MIT graduate jumped before rolling his eyes and grabbing the phone from the desk.
"Agent McGee. Uh, yes ma'am. What? No, that would be Special Agent Gibbs. Yes, just a moment."
The agent handed the phone to Gibbs with a worried look, and the white haired agent knew what had been nagging his gut in an instant.
"Special Agent Gibbs? I'm Doctor Stevens, calling from Bethesda. I have an Agent Anthony DiNozzo here, being prepped for surgery. He was involved in a pileup on the interstate."
"My my, dear boy! Where did that scar come from?"
Tony looked up, the tee shirt in his hands abruptly forgotten, and he followed the elderly Medical Examiner's gaze to a heavily healed scar in his abdomen. Fingering it for a moment, Tony shrugged and pulled his shirt over his head.
"You think that's bad? You should see the other guy."
He turned towards his desk as he continued to wake up from the all-nighter he had pulled while looking for a lead on their current case. Next time, he thought, he'd remember that Dr. Donald Mallard, Ducky to the team, got to the office ridiculously early sometimes.
"Was it from your father?" Ducky asked softly, hesitant and afraid of the answer.
Tony frowned internally. His father? His father had died the day he was born. He was about to voice then when reality smacked him over the head.
Oh yeah…THAT father, he thought stupidly.
His near miss reminded him of something Bones had told him one: "You know, Jim, for a genius and Starfleet prodigy, you sure can be a friggin' idiot sometimes."
Too bad Bones wasn't there at the moment; Tony was sure he wouldn't have let him forget his brain freeze.
Keeping his emotions loose and his muscles relaxed, Tony thought about his answer while mentally reviewing what he and his command crew had decided. His scars from Tarsus, random bar fights, and an embarrassment of complicated missions since gaining Captaincy of the Enterprise couldn't be put down to sheer accident around his team. They were too smart for that. So they'd developed his persona with that in mind and had instead given him an alcoholic and abusive father with a penchant for desertion.
A dark thought crossed Tony's mind then, and he couldn't help but nearly voice it.
Don't think they realize how close they came to hitting the nail on the head with the way I was actually raised.
But Tony knew his cover story well, and he decided it might be time to pretend to open up about it. All the better to sell his cover story with.
"Uh, I guess so, Duck, if you want to get technical. I mean, I doubt he meant it; he was so drunk I don't think he could see straight. And it wasn't like it was a total accident when I knocked over his favorite bottle of whiskey, either. Throw together a drunk man and a stupid kid, toss a broken bottle in there…" He gestured towards his side as he fixed Ducky with a sideways glance. "I guess that's what you end up with."
He would've felt a flash of guilt for misleading the other man, had he really mislead him. Change his father to a stepfather and add in the fact that he hadn't even been to the hospital for that particular wound (Could be why it healed up so messily, Tony realized), and you pretty much had the right story.
Ducky's face paled considerably and he shook his head, obviously grateful for the fact that the bullpen was silent and that he and Tony were the only ones in it.
"I'm so sorry, my dear boy," he murmured softly, and Tony shrugged noncommittally.
"Don't be. I've had worse."
And that wasn't a lie, either.
When he'd finally gotten his hands on what he'd been looking for, the shit hit the fan in a way he hadn't realized could happen.
But apparently Lady Luck didn't much care for him that day.
The team had gone to investigate a storage facility in the middle of dumb-fuck-Egypt, somewhere in the middle of God's Nowhere, West Virginia. The fact that they had no cell service anywhere in the state (Tony cursed mentally at the cell provider they used) should have alerted the team to the fact that this was going to go very, very badly.
So they'd reached the storage facility, and that sixth sense that always had Tony leaping without looking told him that's he'd finally found what he'd been looking for.
Of course, there were bad guys there too. Wherever there was a goal within sight, there were bad guys. It was one of those unspoken rules that not even Spock and his damned logic could ignore.
It was only when Gibbs was approaching one of the suspects with a shouted order of ceasing and desisting did Tony figure out that not only did Lady Luck not care for him at the moment, but she decided it was a good day to wipe him from the face of the planet.
Seeing the tattooed faces of Starfleet's bitter enemies brought back the rage Tony had felt when Nero had destroyed Vulcan. But above that rage, there was knowledge. Namely, the knowledge that Romulans were about three times stronger than humans.
Knowledge he had, that the rest of his team didn't.
So he shouted for Gibbs to get down, for the rest of the team to do likewise, and praised whatever deity was listening for the fact that they had simply dropped when he told them to.
The three Romulans turned at the sound, and the one in charge immediately spat at him, recognition obvious in his dark eyes.
"Can I ask what you're doing here, boys? This isn't exactly anywhere near your home planet, you know," Tony commented calmly, using that same edged tone of voice that had echoed over the hacked transmissions that SETI had picked up.
Gibbs, Ziva, and McGee stared at him, all of them realizing the same thing right as Tony confirmed their suspicions.
"My name is Captain James T. Kirk, USS Enterprise. Under current Starfleet treaty, Romulans have been barred from setting foot on Earth, no matter the situation or the…the time," he said, risking a glance at his soon-to-be-ex-boss.
The man's face was a study in shock.
Jim turned his attention back to the Romulans and noted with only a hint of exasperation that all three seemed to be getting ready to fight.
"You placed a device on this planet four years ago, a device specifically engineered to kill the person responsible for theorizing the use of dilithium in spacefaring ships. You kept moving the device around – that wasn't nice, you know," Jim added almost as an afterthought.
One of the Romulans muttered something in foreign dialect and Jim winced in true thespian style.
"Hey, hey, hey. There's no need to bring anyone's mother into this. You have two options here. You can remove the device, destroy it, and return to your own time to live in peace," he started, and he wasn't too surprised that he didn't get to option number two before the three men rushed him.
Sighing internally, Jim quickly double tapped all three men through the head, knowing that heart shots might mean they would get up again. As the last of the echoes of his gunshots died away, Jim allowed his fatigue to show on his face and he scrubbed a hand over his features. His team stood and he held up a hand to stop their questions.
"Look, I know what you want to ask. This isn't the place for it. I've got to – "
His words were cut off as a sudden lancing pain washed over his senses, causing him to gasp and stumble forward with the intensity. He felt foggy suddenly, and sounds and sights seemed to slow. Turning as he crumpled to the ground, Jim saw a Romulan behind him, a ceremonial sword brandished in his hand, Jim's own blood staining the tip.
Then the man was down, green blood oozing through three bullet wounds in his face. Jim felt rather detached from the whole episode, as well as his body, and he didn't move for a moment.
Then his team was there, milling around him, putting pressure on the stab would that tore through his left side. Giddy as the pain brought him back to awareness, Jim realized that Lady Luck did still have some feelings for him. Otherwise the Romulan would've been smart enough to decapitate him rather than stab him.
"He's laughing…Gibbs, he's going into shock," McGee's hurried tone echoed through the metal storage area.
Jim waved a hand at them and rolled over, forcing himself to his feet against their shouted advice.
"Have to turn off the device. Kill the thing somehow. Gotta get back to Bones. He's…" Jim staggered, one hand clasping his wound tightly, then panted, "Gibbs, shoot it. Shoot it."
There were a few seconds of frenzied silence, the noises playing out like whispers in his head, and he turned bright eyes to the man he'd called "Boss" for four years. The team was standing there, six hands coated with his bright red blood, all their expressions showing confusion and concern.
But Gibbs pulled his piece and for a moment, Jim thought he might be the recipient of Gibbs' notorious marksmanship.
Instead, the older man quietly said, "You promised you'd tell me. Will you?"
Jim nodded, sliding down to sit at the base of the container he'd fallen against.
"I keep my promises. Always do. Maybe later rather than sooner, but I always do," Jim gasped, halfheartedly wondering why it was so hard to breathe.
Gibbs said nothing else before he stalked forward and put his remaining nine bullets in the DNA assassin that was perched at the edge of the pickup truck the Romulans had been driving. The thing exploded in a thousand starbursts that burned into Jim's eyes.
Grinning stupidly, Jim nodded his thanks and reached for what he'd always told people was his lucky charm. Touching the wave-shaped communicator, Jim wondered how his crew would take to the passengers.
"Mr. Spock, mission accomplished. Tell Bones to have that hypospray ready," he whispered. Glancing at the man he'd come to love like a father, and the agents he'd come to adore as siblings, he said, "I promise to return and explain everything. I promise."
They looked uncertain for a moment, but Gibbs nodded and replied, "I'll be waiting, Tony."
Jim smiled a little, knowing what the endearment meant to the older man now that he knew his senior agent's real name.
"Beam me up, Scotty."
He kept his eyes open as white lights began swirling around him, preparing to take him back to the ship he loved so much.
Still, he would miss them.
It was ten years later when Gibbs got the answers he'd been waiting for.
In the basement of his house, sanding relentlessly at his seventh boat project, his back turned towards the stairs, Gibbs didn't see his guest until he turned after hearing him.
"Told you I'd be back."
And so Gibbs turned and took in the sight of his former senior field agent, clad in a pair of black pants and a gold long sleeve shirt instead of the suit he'd always seen Tony in.
Gibbs said nothing for a moment, simply drinking in the sight of the man whom he'd come to love like a son.
"Took your sweet time, didn't you?" Gibbs asked gruffly as he put down his sandpaper.
Jim laughed lightly and settled on the bottom stair, his green eyes suspiciously bright.
"Yeah, took us a little while to find another wormhole and get it stable enough to travel. Sorry about that."
And he actually was sorry.
At Gibbs' raised eyebrow, Jim waved a hand and added, "Don't ask questions. I can't tell you that much."
The agent nodded and at Jim's silent request came to sit on the stair beside him. They sat in companionable silence for a moment before Jim started speaking.
"My name is James Tiberius Kirk, and I'm the Captain of the USS Enterprise. That's a spaceship, by the way, not a seafaring vessel. I had to travel back in time to prevent an attack on one of the founders of Terran space travel. I needed a cover while searching for the bad guys. Your team was my cover." Jim hesitated, then continued, "Time operates differently depending on the wormhole parameters. A few years here were a few minutes there, and that explains the conversations you guys listened in on."
The Captain paused again, hating his insecurity.
"I didn't want to leave the way I did. I wanted to explain everything before I disappeared. But the exit vector was unstable, and the Romulan that jabbed a sword through me kind of put a damper on those plans, but I mean it, boss" – the term slipped off his tongue effortlessly – "I never wanted to lie to you."
Gibbs nodded slightly, taking in what he was told. He thought back over the four years the man beside him was one of his agents.
"What did you lie about?"
Jim couldn't help but smile a bit even as he ground his teeth. Of course, Gibbs would ask that question. He wouldn't be Gibbs otherwise.
"My scars are from my stepfather Frank, and from surviving a massacre, a genocide on another planet, when I was 13. Add in there some bar fights and how missions I go on always seem to take a wrong turn, and you've got my little patchwork of skin."
Somehow, he managed to say all that without puking.
He was sure Gibbs appreciated the gesture.
"I believe you."
Jim smiled, a real smile.
They sat in another companionable silence that stretched for a few minutes before Jim brought up his question.
"I see you got married again, with two kids."
At Gibbs' proud nod, Jim quietly broached the subject he'd bee thinking about for the few days it'd taken them to find the new wormhole.
"You mind if I look up any of your descendants when I get back?"
Gibbs threw him a surprised look, Jim's stance telling him that he'd already done just that, and his words proving that Gibbs was going to have progeny that far outlasted any of his expectations.
"Yeah, I'd like that. Think you could keep them in line for me?" Gibbs asked softly.
Jim just answered, "If they act up, I can always headslap them."
Gibbs chuckled softly and said, "Yeah, I bet you could DiNozzo."
Jim said nothing about the name, and they sat again in silence. A few minutes later, Jim's communicator beeped, and the Captain had to resist an aggravated snarl at the thing.
"Time to go, huh?" Gibbs asked, staring at the little device pinned to Jim's shirt.
The other man just sighed and stood carefully, favoring his side that was still stitching a bit at any fast moves. Gibbs rose to his feet as well, his knees popping, and he stood in front of the other man.
Jim glanced at his hands for a moment before holding one out.
"Goodbye, Jethro. Be good to those kids of yours for me, will ya?" Jim asked lightly, uncaring as his eyes welled with tears.
Gibbs stared at the hand he was offered for a moment before giving in and pulling the man into a tight hug.
His words were hoarse with choked emotion as he gruffly said, "Take care, DiNozzo, or I'll headslap you from the grave so hard you'll be seeing ghosts."
Jim leaned back and laughed, though his cheeks were slightly damp.
"You've got it, boss."
Gibbs rested his hand on the back of Jim's neck and said, "I mean it. You're not expendable."
Jim nodded warmed and tortured by the other man's emotions, and he gripped Gibb's forearm with one of his hands.
"You take care, son."
This time Jim couldn't hide the tears that fell from his eyes, watching as matching ones fell down his surrogate father's face.
"You too, dad."
Then he squeezed Gibbs' arm once and stepped back.
"Tell the others I said hello, that I love them and miss them, and I'll keep an eye on their kids' kids, all right?" Jim asked, trying to keep his voice light.
Gibbs nodded silently and Jim took a deep breath as he tapped his communicator.
"Mr. Scott, one to beam up."
As the familiar lights began to circle him, Jim offered a watery smile to the other man.
Then he faded, the light disappeared, and Gibbs found himself alone in his basement again. He glanced around, huffed quickly as he tried to get rid of his overwrought emotions, before turning back to his boat.
He had been planning on naming the boat after his two kids, Samantha and Jonathon. Then, he realized, he had a better idea.
Headed up the stairs where he could hear his twin toddlers laugh with their mother, Gibbs called, "How does 'The TonyJim' sound for a boat name?"
Fifteen days after his last wormhole excursion and exactly two weeks after destroying the forbidden technology that enabled the paradox-creating time travel, Captain James T. Kirk eyed the recruits that had just boarded his ship. They were talking excitedly amongst themselves, all of them about eighteen years of age, and, leaning against the entryway of the briefing room, Jim listened to their conversation with rapt attention.
"Why would I lie about something like that? My dad seriously has a twenty first century sailboat in his garage! This thing is so cool! One of my great, great grandparents made it by hand. In his basement even. And no, I don't know how he got it out. But I will say one thing – it has the weirdest name! He called it 'The TonyJim'. What kind of a name is that? Anyways, we always take it out for a regatta in the summer. Yeah, my great, great grandfather was a strange duck. Always used to headslap people for some reason."
Smiling softly, Jim reached up and headslapped himself. Those fresh memories welled up inside him, and he let them stay as he marched into the briefing room.
"At ease, Cadets," He responded to their salutes immediately. He sat at the head of the table, watching as the group of four grew immediately quiet and respectful around their new Captain.
"All right, names please?" Jim asked, as though he didn't already know.
"I'm Cadet Thom McGee," one boy said as he pushed his (now) archaic glasses further up his nose.
"My name is Cadet Aerin Scuito," a black headed girl announced, her bubbly personality infectious.
The other girl stared straight ahead and answered, "My name is Cadet Ziva Levy."
Jim turned his attention to the last Cadet remaining, silently amused to see familiar eyes peering back at him.
"I'm Cadet Ryan Gibbs."
Jim Kirk looked at the four staring at him with such anticipation he could feel in his skin. This wasn't the family he'd created back on Earth, not by a long shot. But he'd told himself that he would always watch over his family's children as long as he could.
And so he would.
"Welcome to the USS Enterprise. I'm Captain James T. Kirk. Now, we have a few rules for new cadets. Rule number one: Never wear a red shirt when going off planet."
Well, that's it folks! Just whipped this up today after having this bang around in my head too much. Hope it was all right. Please review if you want. Flames, tar and feathers, whatever floats your boat. I'm easy. :D