Disclaimer: Love that dirty water.

Spoilers: Through the end of S8, Pyramid. I was so disappointed by the lack of Khufu in that episode.

Summary: I took a study break and this happened. Also, I couldn't sleep. No more information! What I think will be multipart fic, so more to come. Ray pops in and out of Ziva's life post-season 8 finale. Also, oblique Penguins.

Ziva had been awake for at least thirty seconds when her bedroom door opened with a creak. If the soft beeping of the alarm system accepting the correct code hadn't woken her, the intentionally un-oiled hinge would have. She relaxed her grip on the SIG under her pillow. "You could have called to tell me you would be in town."

A tired sigh emanated through the darkness from somewhere near the door. "I should have known I wouldn't be able to surprise you."

She pulled the sheet up over her chest in a show of faux modesty as she pushed herself up in a sitting position against the pillows. "Of the five people who have the code to my alarm system, two would buzz in at the front door, one would knock before coming in and one would have checked the refrigerator for beer before knocking on the bedroom door."

"So I'm lucky number five?"

"You have the least respect for boundaries, if that is what you mean."

"But you haven't drawn on me either."

She had to blink as the bedside lamp he switched on momentarily blinded her. Ray was smiling as she shook the spots from her eyes. "Just because I have not shot you yet…" She realized that, given the position of her SIG, she was in an awkward position to carry out her threat, though she did have a knife close at hand. "If you tell me this is just another stopover, I…" she trailed off. If they did have limited time, she didn't want to waste it. His stubble was rough against her palm.

He hesitated as he sat beside her on the edge of the bed. "What does two weeks count as?"

The sheet no longer seemed terribly important. "An apology for last month's three-hour booty call."

"I thought I did pretty well for three hours." He leaned over and stopped just short of the kiss she was expecting. "And, as I recall, I was physically dragged to the bedroom and handcuffed to the headboard on that occasion."

"Do not worry. I have learned my lesson." She closed the distance between them for a moment to peck his lips. "Next time I will use wire-reinforced rope."

He traced the length of her neck with his fingertips. "I might be able to push it to three weeks…"

"Throw in a few dinners, perhaps a trip to the National Symphony, and I will be satisfied." She seized his tie and pulled him down.

She gotten as far as unbuttoning his shirt several minutes later when he caught her hands. "Ziva, I…I'm sorry for last time."

She pushed his shirt over his shoulders. God, he smelled so good. She buried her face in his neck. His weight pressed her into the mattress. It was like a particularly intense dream. She even liked that he hadn't shaved in spite of the scratchiness against her lips. "As long as two weeks is not an exaggeration…"

"At least two weeks," he corrected, brushing his lips against her forehead. The encounter was suddenly over. He was very deliberate as he crawled over her toward the other side of her bed. "I've got some reports to catch up on at Langley and the Company has people taking care of my assignments overseas while I recover."

"Recover?" Her next question froze on her lips as she saw the white bandages wrapping his torso when he carefully slipped his undershirt off.

"Don't worry, it's just a little shrapnel. All superficial stuff. Just have to be careful I don't pull my stitches in the next few days. And before you get all aggravated with me for being here because I got hurt, remember that I can see that bruise on your arm where it looks like someone hit you with a baseball bat."

She tried not to flinch when he touched the mark on her upper arm, the result of a not-so-smooth arrest early in the evening. Mostly she was annoyed that he had correctly identified the weapon. "What makes you think you deserve details?"

"Just so we're clear that we both have vague injuries. You got x-rays, right? Nothing broken?"

"Ducky checked me over and I am just bruised."

"Good. I'm not technically allowed to carry out any domestic ops, including vengeance on people who hurt you." He groaned slightly as he turned on his side and reached for her. He had yet to demonstrate physically how much he had missed her, so she undid his belt and tugged at his fly as they kissed. To her surprise, he stopped her once again. "I'm sorry, Ziva, I just…I can't right now. I've been flying for seventeen hours and I don't remember the last time I slept in a real bed…"

"I do not miss those days." She rubbed a spot on her ribs that she was just noticing was sore; hopefully that wouldn't draw Ray's attention later. His weight shifted the mattress as he lifted his hips to push his pants off. She gave his shoulder a gentle shove. "I am tired, too. I just got in an hour ago."

"Case?" He yawned.

"It was not late night at the bar. Well, I suppose it was, but…you did not fly seventeen hours to hear about drunken petty officers and their poor choices."

"If you want to talk about it…"

"Perhaps in the morning." She remained on her side, facing him. "If you are up to it."

"No question." He slipped an arm around her shoulders as she moved to snuggle against him. "I missed you."

"Missed you, too." She stroked the part of his chest not covered by gauze. "You will really be here for two weeks?"

"At least. I promise."

She sighed. Promises. She rolled away from him. That damn box was sitting right on her nightstand. Why did she keep the stupid thing? And in plain sight… She closed her eyes and felt for the light switch, not opening them until the room was dark again.

Ray had followed her back to her side of the bed, wrapping his arm around her waist. "Hey, did I…?"

She cut him off, "No. I just need to sleep as well." She reached behind and gave him a brief squeeze. "Be ready for the alarm to go off at five."

"I'll be up." He was warm against her back as he spooned her. She could already tell that two weeks wouldn't be nearly long enough.