Title: If only I could remember you.
Rating: NC17 for some swearing and sex scenes.
Spoilers: Some mild spoilers for sub-rosa, season 1 and Dead Man Talking, also season 1.
Characters: Tim, Tony, Ziva, Gibbs, Abby and Ducky.
Pairings: Tim and Tony
Words: yeah plenty!
Warning: Contains some swearing and a mild sex scene, but nothing to graphic.
Summary: Tim has lost his memory, but can he regain it before he loses something he didn't even have in the first place?
Author's note: For Lori, I really hope you like it and have a merry Christmas! This story is set Christmas 2010, but no spoilers for this season or something.
If only I could remember you.
"I wanna be your lover baby, I wanna be your man!" Very special agent Anthony DiNozzo sung as he air guitared his way through the bullpen, coming to a halt in front of his desk. He dropped his backpack next to it and flung his jacket over the chair with an ease that would be impossible to misread as anything else than years of practice.
"Morning Ziva, Boss." he said accepting the short responses from his teammates with a nod of his head. He lifted his feet on his desk with an air of ease and skimmed through his mail. A Christmas card from some ex-girlfriend, a date he had to be in court for a statement, his fathers' company's newsletter and an invitation from a far away family member for the Christmas weekend. Reading the newsletter while his computer booted up he learned that his father's company was doing worse than ever and many employee's feared for their job.
He dropped the papers in the bin without a second glace. His mailbox was filled with requests from various departments, asking Tony to ask Gibbs something, a few mails from Abby concerning the evidence on their latest case and some spam which he quickly deleted.
That moment the elevator door opened and McGee stumbled out, wrapped in a big, warm coat, mittens on his hands and a scarf in front of his face.
"Sorry Boss" he mumbled trough the fabric while he unpacked himself "My car is wrecked, a truck slipped on the road because off all the snow and drove right into my car. I had to take public transportation."
Gibbs barely acknowledged the excuse but Tony felt for McGee, well maybe more for his car, but in his head it was almost the same thing.
"You could have given me a call McMetro." he said as he stood up, humming happily. He got a cup of coffee for himself from the cafeteria and decided to bring one for McGee as well, maybe it would help the man warm up a little and if nothing else, it was the least he could do to help him mourn for his wrecked car. Tony shuddered as he remembered the end of his last two cars, one blown up and the other crashed after it was stolen by a criminal.
Tim accepted the cup with a grateful smile and wrapped his long fingers around it. The coffee tasted like drain-water but he could warm his fingers, he tasted carefully to make sure that Tony wasn't about to trick him and sighed when the coffee had its usual horrible taste. He had thought about asking Tony for a ride that morning, but he wasn't sure if he was willing to put up with the undoubtedly many jokes Tony would make. Only he could wreck a car while not driving it. Tony's understanding smile had been surprising to say the least, but Tim wasn't about to complain.
The day was pretty uneventfully and Tony even dared to joke that it was 'too cold for crime.' It had earned him a glare and a story from Ducky about murder in Antarctic. At the end of the day he all but manhandled Tim in to his car. "I'll bring you home." He said with a little smile that Tim didn't completely trust, but he was pretty sure that it was freezing several degrees outside so he didn't bother with complaining.
Tony parked outside Tim's new apartment building and followed him inside, insisting on dinner. Tim chuckled and told him that it could be done, but they had to visit the supermarket first. It surprised him how pleasant Tony could be and they strolled through the aisles together. Tim gathered everything he needed leaving Tony to wonder what he would do with the odd combination of products.
Tony threw a flirty smile to the girl behind the counter and half an hour later they were back in Tim's kitchen. McGee quickly changed in an older pair of jeans and a shirt which he wouldn't mind staining. Tim set to work while Tony sat in a chair in the corner of his kitchen. McGee ignored Tony's odd looks when he mixed the mayo, apricot Jam, Mango chutney and Worcester sauce together and pored the mixture over the chopped chicken breasts.
He steamed some broccoli, roasted some potatoes and within half an hour they sat at the table. Tony's appreciative moans made Tim blush slightly and wondered for a second if he would also make those sounds while having sex. He blushed even more at that thought and refocused on his dinner. He wasn't ashamed of the fact that he liked girls as well as guys, but he was pretty sure Tony would give him loads of crap, and honestly, it was just easier this way.
They finished dinner and Tim broke out the wine, they talked for an hour or two before Tony started to bring plates to the kitchen. When Tim moved to help him he was surprised when he was pushed back in his chair. "You did the cooking, I'll do the cleaning." And without a complaint he had cleaned the table and even washed the dishes.
It was close to midnight when Tony left, waving goodbye and promising that he would pick Tim up in the morning, so he better had some coffee ready. McGee closed the door with a smile, already setting the timer for his coffee maker.
His doorbell sounded half an hour before he even expected Tony. He was still walking around in his boxer short while eating his dinosaur cereal. "Open up Probie! I am freezing my precious ass off here outside!" Tony's voice sounded from the speaker system next to the door. Tim reluctantly pushed the button that would give Tony access to the building and opened his front door slightly while he jumped under the shower.
Part of him hoped that Tony would be his usual self and barge in the bathroom, maybe be a little bit flustered as he noticed that Tim was naked but after a few seconds get with the program and seduce him. Of course no such thing did happen.
He was drying the last trace of wetness out of his hair when he spotted Tony in his kitchen, a cup of coffee in front of him and a bag of bagels on the table. "I brought breakfast." Tony stated with a nod towards the brown paper bag on the table. He accepted the cup of coffee Tony offered him from out of nowhere as he picked a bagel out of the bag, cream-cheese with sun-dried tomato and rocket salad, which happened to be his favorite.
He wondered for a second where Tony might have gotten bagels this early, but then again, this was Washington, the city never slept.
"Thanks" he mumbled while inhaling his coffee, it seemed that Gibbs' habits rubbed off on him after all. He noticed that Tony looked surprisingly at home at his kitchen table, feet popped up on another chair.
"Hey, McMorningface." Tony drawled, "Hurry up, Gibbs isn't known for his patience. I already got you a cup for the road." There was a travel cup, next to his keys and wallet. Smiling, Tim brushed his teeth and within 10 minutes he was ready to go.
His backpack was on the small table at the door, next to his badge and the gun Tony already got from his little vault. Tony was standing next to the door, pretending to be impatient while he actually enjoyed watching Tim getting ready.
"If I am to bring you home you better cook me dinner you know, I'm not a cheap date!" Tony joked before he opened the door, walking out and laughed as he heard Tim's hurried footsteps.
They left Tim's apartment early because the streets and traffic where a mess. People where shouting and making obscene gestures from the warm safety of their cars as traffic inched forward. "You'll think we'll be on time?" Tim asked after checking his watch for the seventh time. "Don't worry McTardy." Tony grinned, "With this weather even Gibbs isn't going to be on time."
Half an hour later they drove on to the navy yard, it was suspiciously empty, and not even Gibbs was there yet. The red neon numbers on the wall showed they that they where even a few minutes early.
8 am Sharp Gibbs came walking in, looking like he had been walking through the snow, which he probably had. Ten minutes later Tony got a call from Ziva, she was in the middle of a chain accident and Tony was surprised that she wasn't the one starting it.
The weather was awful, there were no active cases so Gibbs made them do a heap of paperwork, so that was when Tony found himself with his feet popped up on his desk, a file in his hand for cover and watching Tim.
He had seen the man before, of course he had, and Tim was his colleague and lousy partner in crime for a few years now. But recently he started to notice different things, like how long Tim's fingers were, or how green his eyes became as they sparkled in the sun. He liked listening to Tim's laugh, it was most of the time a little snort, full of suppressed laughter.
Snapping his eyes wide open he refocused on the file again. He should be focusing on his job, and not on his very manly colleague, so he was going to do just that. It was past eleven when Ziva finally came in, furious and Tony made a mental note not to say anything to her today.
Five minutes past one pm they were all called up to Vance's office and Tony had the idea that even Gibbs didn't know what it was about. They lined up in front of the man's desk and Tony felt like giving a salute, just because he could, but then again, Gibbs would kick his ass, so he just stood there, waiting for the inevitable bomb to drop.
"Gibbs" Vance started, before addressing the rest of the team. "DiNozzo, McGee, David. There is a problem with the current case our special ops team in LA is working on, because of the snowstorm they are unable to land in DC, that is why I request your help shadowing a suspect."
Suddenly Hetty popped up on the screen and after the exchange of necessary pleasantries she quickly explained the case. There was a man on the loose who was suspected to inject Marines power-bars with drugs to pump them up. In the end they all lost their minds, resulting in two suicides so far. The prime suspect was believed to be in DC at the moment and about to pick up a package. The team would have to shadow him and be careful, the man appeared to be extremely paranoid and was taking more safety measures each day.
Hetty gave them some tips on how to avoid being noticed and scowled at Gibbs' eye-roll. They had to go with a plan which was extremely tricky. Each of them would follow the suspect for a short period of time, a minute or two, before the next person would step in.
So, later that day Tony was not only freezing his nose off outside, he was also watching McGee who was watching Lt. Jefferson. It had started snowing again somewhere in the last hour, and it was looking as if the man was just doing some Christmas shopping. But then it happened. The Lt. bumped into a woman, causing them both to drop their bag. They apologized, picked up their bags and left again.
"That's it!" Gibbs suddenly said "They swapped bags" There was some background noise, probably Gibbs talking to Hetty in MTAC and suddenly he was back. "We have confirmed the woman's identity. Team one, move in on the Lt., teams two and three, go get the woman."
That moment everything happened really quickly, Ziva, Tim and himself where running towards Jefferson, carefully avoiding the slippery patches on the sidewalk. He saw Ziva tackling the man without any finesse and seconds later Tim started to slip. He slid of the sidewalk, onto the busy road and before Tony could even change his course he slammed into the side of the black sedan that was passing them.
"Tim" he yelled at the moment of impact and the younger man fell to the ground, body lifeless and his left arm at an impossible angle. He sped towards the accident and knelt down next to the limp body. "Tim!" he said, gently patting the man's cheek, ignoring the hysterical shriek of the driver and the bystanders. "Someone call 911!" he yelled as he moved to check the pulse, relieved when he found one.
"Dammit Tony!" Gibbs was yelling in his ear. "I want you to tell me what is going on right now or I will kick your ass so hard that you won't be able to sit down until the next year!"
"Boss" Tony said as he swallowed. "Tim uh, he ran and crashed into the side of a car, he is unconscious and everything, but I hope that the ambulance will be here soon, because I am afraid to move, him, but it is very cold." He rambled on. He frantically clutched Tim's hand, and draped his own coat over the younger man. Suddenly there was a whirl of activity, he was pushed aside and when they loaded Tim into the ambulance he followed him, nothing could convince him to step out again and the nurse just sighed as she stepped in beside him and soon they were moving. He should have felt guilty for leaving Ziva behind but at the moment he couldn't focus on anything other than Tim, lying there, cold, pale and lifeless. It was not a good look for him.
Gibbs was at the hospital before Tony with the ambulance arrived and for a second Tony thought that that was a small miracle but he giggled when he realized that it was Gibbs they were talking about, the man could bend the time - space continuum if he wanted to.
The stretcher with Tim on it was pushed through two doors and when Tony wanted to follow he was stopped by a nurse.
"I'm sorry sir." she said with a friendly face "But only medical personnel is allowed trough here." He stumbled back, lost for a moment until he noticed Gibbs tugging on his arm. "Come on, DiNozzo, there is nothing you can do right now." He let himself be pushed into a chair and absentmindedly accepted a cup of coffee. He stared at the coffee for what felt like hours as his breath made swirly patterns in the steaming liquid.
A young female doctor who couldn't have been older than thirty stepped out of the emergency room. "Agent DiNozzo?" She said looking at her chart. Tony moved over to her so fast that he felt dizzy for a second. The doctor just smiled at him. "Agent McGee has a concussion and a broken arm." We would like to keep him in the hospital a few more hours, but then he should be good enough to go home, that means, if anyone is going to stay with him and wake him every three hours.
"I'll do it" Tony blurted out, eager to step past the woman and see for himself that Tim was fine. Dr. Maccoy, according to her name tag, smiled and led the way, giving them a little more information about the break in Tim's arm. But no matter how hard Tony tried, he couldn't focus.
The finally stopped in front of a door and after a knock Tony threw it open. "Probie!" he said as he bounced inside. McGee scrambled on the bed, desperately trying to sit up. "Mister Agent Gibbs!" he stammered, "Agent DiNozzo Sir, I uhm- I."
He fell silent and Tony got that really bad feeling in his gut that something wasn't right. Glancing over to Gibbs he noticed that his boss felt the same way.
"McGee!" Gibbs said forceful, cutting Tim's stammering of. "Can you tell me what today's date is?" he asked, almost afraid for the answer Tim is about to give him.
"the 28th of November, we just finished that case, you remember with the gross bodies. I dated Abby two days ago and..."
Tony can see the moment things are slotting in to place in McGee's head. His face goes pale and his mouth falls open. Portraying the insecure probie he once was. "Do I have some sort of amnesia, sir?" he asks with a small voice as the doctor moves forward. "When did this case take place?" the doctor asks as he checks McGee's eyes.
"2003." Is Tony's answer and he can't believe how hard he has to struggle to keep his panic on a low level. "We met him on a case back then."
"Back then?" McGee asks, panicked "What year is it, what happened?"
He struggles against the doctor, looking for his phone probably and before Tony realizes it he is sitting next to Tim on the bed. "Easy buddy. You have some sort of a concussion, memory loss thing going on and the doctor is going to check on you for a second, after that I will answer all your questions."
He sagged back against the cushions, almost looking defeated, and Tony hopes that he isn't giving up, because he has to get his memory back. He has to. The doctor gently shoves Tony out of the way. He shines a light in McGee's eye; how on earth is that going to get his memory back Tony wonders, but he waits anyway.
Finally the doctor moves back and Tony moves over to the bed again. He ignores the doctor who is speaking with Gibbs.
"First things first." he says, unsure how to proceed. "You call me Tony now, or DiNozzo, depending on how much I irritate you. It is the year 2010, in fact, it's almost Christmas and you slipped while chasing a suspect, gave you a nasty concussion and some memory loss apparently."
McGee blinks at him with his giant probie eyes and it looks as if he is almost afraid to speak. "So, I uhm made it on Gibbs team?" he asks and he seems like he can't believe it. "Hell yeah!" Tony says with a big grin, "can't work without a nerd these days."
It is a friendly jab, yet somehow McGee's face changes quickly and Tony realizes that this McGee isn't as confident and he smacks his own head for good measure. "We are friends, we joke a lot you know. We couldn't have closed a lot of cases without your computer magic."
"Okay." McGee responds slowly and he wonders how much he has changed over the past seven years, it is clearly in his eyes.
"Am I dating some one?"
It's a perfectly normal question but it surprises Tony. He doesn't know. At least, not for certain.
"I don't think so." he responds quietly. "You surprise me a lot you know. Your last girl was really hot!"
Even Gibbs chuckles at the disbelieve in McGee's eyes. "you are quite the hotshot now, you haven't noticed yet, have you?"
McGee lifts the covers and is surprised by what he sees. "Wow" he says as he puts the covers down.
"7 years huh?" he asks before dropping his head back. "What the hell has happened to me?"
The doctors didn't find anything that could explain the memory loss and two days later he is released. Tony has to promise to help him settle back into his life, and that is why he has a suitcase packed when he picks McGee up from the hospital after lunch.
"Brace yourself elflord, I am coming to stay with you!" Ton ignores the wince and pained expression as he takes Tim's bag and ushers him in to the passengers seat.
"Not for ever or anything. Just until you are declared sane enough to go free."
The drive to the apartment is not what it used to be, not by a long shot, but there are some friendly jabs at each other but the more Tony drives the more confused McGee gets. "I moved?" he finally squeaks.
"Doh!" Tony says, doing one of his best Homer Simpsons expressions ever. "You came to work in DC, no point in staying in Norfolk now is there?" Tim blinks and thinks, 'of course', Tony can clearly see it on his face, it's written right there in those big green eyes.
"This is a nice place." McGee says thoughtfully as Tony pulls the car in to the underground garage of his apartment building.
"You made a lot of money with your book" Tony shrugs and fails to notice Tim's expression.
"I published a book?" he asks, eyebrows up in his hairline and that is the moment that Tony realizes that seven years is a really long time.
Time flies by and before they both know it the hospital shrink clears him for duty. He gets more of his memory back every day and last night he had a lot of fun teasing Tony with kissing the transsexual. Tony for his part had just laughed this off and made his way back to his room. It used to be Tim's room but more and more off Tony's belonging snuck in over the past weeks and when there was suddenly a giant tv in his living room he was fairly certain Tony had moved in.
Tim wasn't sure how to bring it up but he felt that it was time to get his life back, and his life didn't include DiNozzo, or at least that was what he was trying to tell himself. It surprised him every time how much he enjoyed it to find the other man squirling around the apartment, or walking Jethro together through the rain.
After the first few weeks he had started to get flashes of Tony and him kissing and he enjoyed the flip his stomach made by the memory of it, until he realized that it wasn't a memory but rather a fantasy. This was Tony he was talking about, and there was no way that Tony would or even could be interested in him. He went clubbing every week and every week Tim had to hear about the woman he encountered, so he figured that he was sending Tony away for his own sanity really.
So, while he was driving back from work and Tony was talking about some new movie (he really should pay more attention) he went for broke.
"The shrink has cleared me, you can move back to your own place."
The sudden silence in the car was deafening. Tony had stopped talking all of a sudden and was gaping at him.
"I... we - okay." he says.
"It is the weekend now, so you could..." Tim gestures vaguely, trying to indicate that Tony shouldn't hurry to much, but he'd preferably be gone before Monday.
"Yeah, okay." Tony quietly agreed and they didn't speak the entire way home and even inside the apartment there was a lot of tension in the air. Tim started dinner while Tony went into his room, the sounds of packing piercing the silence. The quiet sounds sounding deafening.
Dinner was awkward, painfully polite small talk and they both rushed through their meals. Tony was gone by morning. His television disappeared later that day and Tim sighed as he looked around his apartment.
It was basically the same apartment but somehow it felt different, empty even and Tim put on the television just so he didn't have to hear the silence.
If he thought that Sunday had been bad, Monday was worse. Tony came in, barely on time and looking like he had been run over by a bus.
"Busy night DiNozzo?" Gibbs asked and he threw a big file on his desk. "don't care." he responded at the grunt he produced. "I want this case closed before the week is by."
Tony dropped his head on his desk and grunted again.
Tim chuckled for a second, but soon received his own file and seconds later a thump indicated the deliverance of a file on Ziva's desk.
"Think of it as a competition." Gibbs smiled. "First one to finish this case will get a 'special' surprise." They all frowned and opened their files. It turned out to be three old, complicated cold cases, one worse than the other. Ziva had a case involving a suicide that turned out to be murder, Tony had a case of two female petty officers who had disappeared during shore leave and finally Tim, who had to figure out how a million dollars had disappeared from a ship.
It was a distraction from Gibbs' side and Tim didn't bother to wonder how the man knew about Tony moving out, but he was thankful for it, because now he could at least pretend to be working during awkward silences.
The days go on and Ziva is the first to close her case and her prize is that she has to do some interviews with people who want to go to FLETC and it is not much of a prize at all, but she seem happy to escape the squad room.
Tim starts having trouble sleeping. He always slept on the left side, always, but more and more he finds himself rolling towards the middle, seeking for a warmth that isn't there. Time flies by and a week before Christmas they get an other case. He barely sees his house, but what he does see is Tony, everywhere. He sees the ruffled hair when he wakes up behind his desk, he sees the small smile as he gets a hug from Christmas-Abby and he sees the Hanukah candles he gifts Ziva. It hurts just a little bit as Tim realizes that those things aren't directed at him.
Traditionally they close the case on Christmas eve and it is already too late for Tim to go back to his parents for Christmas so he orders some Thai and drives home. The apartment feels cold and empty and mail is cluttering his table, he can count the hours he's been home last week on one hand and he knows he has to make it up to Jethro. The dog usually stays with a neighbor family when he has an active case with long hours and even though he loves it, he goes crazy when Tim comes to get him. They spend the evening on the couch, Jethro warm and heavy against him and it feels so completely wrong.
He sighs as he turns of the television, and gets his coat and his keys. Chuckling as Jethro pries himself from the couch to go outside, it's cold and he buries himself further in his coat as Jethro runs around, pretending to be the hot buff of the deserted piece of land.
When he returns home after half an hour he finds Tony huddled on his doorstep, he looks small, cold and on the verge of breaking. He knows Tony still has a key of his apartment so he appreciates it that he didn't just barge in.
Jethro takes it upon himself to welcome him back with a lot of licks and belly scratches and Tim wishes that it was only that easy, but it never is.
Tony gets invited in with a small gesture of his hand, but he sees it anyway and five minutes later they are both drinking hot chocolate, despite the ridiculous late hour and staring at each other.
If it had been awkward before, it got even worse when they had both finished their drinks.
"I shouldn't have asked you to leave, but..." Tim starts and stops as Tony moves forward, grabs his jacket and pushes him against the wall.
"I don't want to leave. Ever." Tony says and he buries his head in the crook of Tim's neck, pushing hard against him. Ignoring Jethro's playful bark.
"You had to leave." Tim answered quietly in return, wrapping his arms around Tony, pulling him close. "It was killing me that I couldn't touch you, have you, the way I wanted and..."
His words are cut of as Tony's lips meet his. They are almost silently begging for permission and Tim is happy to give. They kiss for what feels like forever, exploring each other mouths, hands roaming and suddenly they are moving against each other. Tony tries to get closer to Tim, also as if he is trying to crawl under his skin and soon they are rutting like bunnies to get off. It's Tony who comes first with a choked cry, panting against Tim, barely able to support himself and them Tim is coming too, biting down on Tony's neck and he is sure it will leave a mark but fuck, who cares?
Tim decides that it is a plan to get clean and in bed, but Tony isn't moving. He is still shaking there against Tim and muttering curses.
"I never thought you'd go for me." Tony mutters and okay, apparently they are talking about this now Tim realizes. He starts to tug him to the bathroom and he never once stops talking.
"...I never thought you'd go for me, with me being a guy and all." he mumbles as Tim's shacking fingers open another button on his shirt. It takes some skill to undress him and steer to the bathroom while Tony really seems oblivious. "and all the hot girls that saw right through your geekiness and then you had the head thing." Tony chuckles as if he is telling a bad joke. "and then you kicked me out, just like that. " he makes a sound that sounds suspiciously like a broken sob.
Tony talks and Tim continues to undress him and not before long they are naked and sticky. Turning the shower to a nice temperature he guides Tony under the spray who still doesn't seem really aware of his surroundings and is now talking about Jeanne.
Suddenly he gets it, this thing that Tony is trying to say and while standing under the slightly to warm shower he kisses Tony to make him shut up.
"I love you." he says when Tony finally shuts up.
"For ever after." Tony says with a happy smile as he dives in for a kiss and Tim realizes that he never figured that finding true love would be this easy.