A/N: I hadn't written something for NCIS for awhile and had the hankering to do so. This could be considered a continuation of my other one-shot Move or it could be a stand alone. Whichever you guys perfer. Read, review and enjoy.
Disclaimer: I own what is mine.
He didn't think he had ever felt this drunk before. An empty shot glass hovered in the curve of his hand, but he couldn't recall actually drinking whatever had been inside it. McGee blinked and shook his head as he tried to forget why he had been drinking in the first place.
"Timothy? It's your mother."
He had grinned at hearing her voice. She always did that…always told him it was her even though he already knew. Now, he wished he had never picked up the phone.
"It's about your father."
Wasn't it always? The man who had considered him a failure… who he had disappointed time and time again. McGee raised his hand and pointed for another drink.
"McGee's do not get sea sick, Timothy."
Paleness coated his cheeks as he leaned over the rail of the boat a few seconds later and emptied the contents of his stomach. A resigned sigh sounded behind him and Tim felt guilt begin to overcome him.
He took solace in the fact that a glimmer of pride had shown in his dad's eyes when he had told him he be part of NCIS. It was better than nothing, right?
It helped that the team had become like a surrogate family to him. It only took a week working under Gibbs for his reasons to be working at NCIS to change.
He no longer needed to prove anything to his dad.
Amber liquid stared up at him. His hand loosely grasped the shot glass again.
"He's in the hospital again, honey. The doctors say he may not make it this time…he's asking for you."
His mother's voice had shaken as she had spoken to him and McGee could never refuse her.
The last time he had seen his dad it had been at Christmas. That had been months ago. The tension in the room had been pliable enough to cut with a knife, but it wasn't out of dislike. He did love his dad and he knew his dad loved him. They just never understood each other.
He tossed back the shot glass and felt the world spin. There was a reason he didn't normally drink much.
"I'll be there as soon as I can, Mom."
But he wasn't. He had stalled until the last possible second to go and see his father. He didn't want to see the man that had expected so much from him reduced to a frail old man. He hadn't wanted to be in a room where he could feel the resignation that his father felt for him. He did it though.
Soulful brown eyes stared up at him in regret and McGee had felt his heartbreak just a little more.
"I'm sorry, son."
He had never expected the apology. It was so unlike his dad. McGee had been sure that it was one of the few things that his dad did have in common with Gibbs. Apologies were a sign of weakness.
He raised his hand for another drink when a voice sounded from his right. He looked over startled. Boss?
Clear blues stared at him solemnly, "Don't you think you've had enough, McGee?"
"Probably." McGee slurred as he looked away from Gibbs a little embarrassed.
Gibbs had spoken the word softly but McGee could hear the order in his tone. His eyes cut back to the older man and he knew that Gibbs knew. Gibbs always knew.
Gibbs raised an eyebrow, "Let's go, Tim."
McGee nodded and was mildly surprised when they showed up at Gibb's house. He spent the night on the older man's couch and woke up to find that a heavy blanket had been placed over him at some time during the night.
He may have lost one dad, but still had his other one.