A/N: Hiya folks! This is this years Christmas gift fic I wrote for my wonderful friend and beta Finlaure. This fic isn't betaed cause there's just something wrong about asking her to beta a fic that is a giffie for her :P But I do want all my lovely readers to enjoy the fic too so I did try and make an effort of using spell check :D Anyways, I hope you all enjoy :) Oh and this fic is Tibbs pre-slash so heads up folks ;)
Gibbs sat in his living room and stared at the flickering flames that danced in his fireplace.
It was the 23th of December, one more night till Christmas eve and he was nursing a beer as his eyes occasionally took in the state of the room he was sitting in.
There were Christmas decorations everywhere, tinsel hanging from various places, Christmas themed figurines on the tables and shelves, small lights hanging on the window and above the fireplace and finally the small Christmas tree sitting in the corner of the room. He also fleetingly thought of the lights and figures decorating his front porch.
None of which he had gotten himself.
He wasn't even sure who was the busy little elf responsible for it all as it turned out that his best best had turned out to be wrong. He ignored the sharp twinge of disappointment that thought brought with it.
It had all started on December first. It had been like any other day of solving crimes and putting bad guys behind bars. At five Gibbs had sent the team home and after another hour had himself decided to call it quits for the day.
The ride home had been unremarkable as well, as had the stop for his usual order of take out from his favorite Greek place.
Then he actually arrived home and the normalcy ended.
He had gone inside and turned on the light when he noticed a faint glow coming from his living room.
Instantly on alert he'd reached for his gun and with it's reassuring weight in hand, he'd made his way cautiously towards the peculiar light. As he'd reached the doorway he'd seen an angel figure on his coffee table, the led light in its small halo providing the glow that softly illuminated part of the room. He'd turned on the overhead light and with practiced ease checked every part of his house before determining that there were no visible threats.
The survey complete, he'd returned to the lonely angel and that's when he saw the small note in front of the figure.
'May this angel protect you and make all your Christmas wishes come true.'
The note wasn't signed but Gibbs hadn't really expected it to be. He carefully picked the angel up and inspected every inch of it before flicking the switch to turn the halo off and placing it on the table.
He decided to not mention the angel to anyone, it wasn't like it was a dead threat and his gut wasn't giving him any danger signals. And besides if his gut feeling proved to be wrong, he always had a gun at hand and he damn well knew how to use it. So no need to alarm Abby by asking her to ran prints from the object or anything like that.
He actually managed to forget all about it until he came home the following evening to find a piece of tinsel hanging from the ceiling.
And so it had been since then, everyday when he came home there would be a new piece of decoration in his house or in front of it and now on day 23 his house had more Christmas feeling than it had seen for decades.
And he had no idea who to thank for all of it, and even if the place practically oozed holiday spirit, it was still empty and he was still too lonely to enjoy it. Maybe finding out who was behind all of it would help chase the negative feelings away.
There was always a note like on the first evening with the angel, the messages varied from 'to light up your dark evenings' like it had said when the lights appeared or 'what's a Christmas without Santa?' that note had caused Gibbs to chuckle softly as he looked at the miniature Santa now standing on the kitchen island.
But none of the notes revealed the identity of the person behind all this, though after the first one there was always a signature of "The holiday elf" at the bottom.
Strangely Gibbs didn't feel angry at whoever the elf was for invading his home and forcing Christmas on him, but on the contrary. Many evenings he'd actually looked forward to coming home and seeing what the 'elf' had left him this time. From the notes Jethro gathered that whoever it was, they obviously had to have some feelings for him to go through all the trouble of doing this and so he always hoped for a clue as to their identity.
Never was there a straight out clue, but piece by piece he thought he was starting to unravel the mystery behind his mystery decorator as many of the gifts seemed fitting to a certain person's personality and some of the notes held a sense of humor in them, like the one with the Santa figure and so he'd started to keep a closer eye on the person he suspected for doing all of this.
He'd thrived on the challenge of trying to catch the person and revealing their identity, but no amount of craftiness from his part had been enough. And now he didn't really care about the whole thing anymore because his 'holiday elf' couldn't be the one he'd suspected and the one he'd wanted it to be.
That had become painfully obvious when he'd been with the person all day and actually brought them home with him, and still during his absence there had been one more addition to his house. A fully decorated Christmas tree had been standing in the corner of the room as he hauled Tony into his guest bedroom.
The younger man had gotten injured while taking down their perp on the last case, so after he'd been cleared by the doctor's to go home, Gibbs had loaded the slightly concussed man into his car and taken him home with him.
The younger man had drank in the sight of the decorations and his eyes lit up at the sight of the tree, but he made no comment of the sudden interest his boss was showing at celebrating the holidays.
So now Gibbs was sitting in his living room with his beer, while trying to banish the images of his second in command lying motionless on the ground after being blindsided by the man he'd been chasing after.
Jethro shook his head to clear it and his eyes strayed to sadly gaze at the tree that was now fast becoming something Gibbs hated. It was a symbol of sorts of how foolish he'd been to hope that maybe Tony would have done all of this for him and had feelings for him. Not that it was the first thing he thought Tony couldn't have brought since they'd worked late together on a case, but somehow he'd been able to ignore the other times, but there was no way on earth that the younger man could have brought the tree when he had beat Gibbs to work and hadn't left his sight all day.
Draining the rest of the beer with one big gulp Gibbs stood up and with a final morose look at the tree went to check up on Tony.
Looking at the sleeping man, it took all of his willpower not to brush the unruly hair back from the younger man's forehead, but he managed it. Making sure the trashcan was within easy reach if Tony's concussion decided to make itself known during the night and bringing a glass of water to the nightstand he made his way to his own bedroom.
It took a lot of tossing and turning, but finally Gibbs fell into sleep.
It was a while later that he stirred as a faint sound drifted down the hall and into his room. Gibbs opened his eyes and after seeing that it was only 3am he listened intently and there it was again. It was like someone was trying their hardest to be quiet but not quite managing it as there was an occasional creak or the sound of shuffling feet.
Deciding to see what his agent was up to, because who else would be wandering around the house at the late hour, Jethro got out of bed and put on his slippers before quietly making his way towards the stairs as he was fairly sure it was the way Tony had gone.
Years of experience made the older man able to avoid the creaky spots on the stairs so when he arrived downstairs and saw the other man, there had been nothing to warn the younger man of his presence.
He watched with furrowed brow as Tony walked to the couch and picked up his backpack that Gibbs had thrown there earlier. He rummaged around for a minute before finding what he was looking for and as Jethro watched, he pulled out a small star that had what appeared to be small ring attached to the bottom of it.
Gibbs watched as Tony turned and swayed slightly before managing to right himself and slowly making his way towards the Christmas tree in the corner.
It took a minute for the ex-marine to realize what the other man was doing but then it registered to him, he hadn't noticed that the tree had no star on top and as realization dawned he watched in stunned silence as Tony reached to place the star on top of the tree so that the little ring held it in place.
There was a soft rustling sound that made Gibbs realize that Tony had moved back to his backpack while the older man had spaced out and had pulled out a piece of paper and a pen and had bent over the desk to write something.
Unable to help himself Gibbs tiptoed his way over so that he was peering over the other man's shoulder and could clearly read what he was writing.
He smiled as he read the words written on the paper and the way Tony was drawing little elves on the paper next to the words.
Merry Christmas my love, I hope maybe this one won't be as dark and lonely as the last ones have been for you. And I hope you've enjoyed even some of my gifts.
Your holiday elf
"Are you really?"
The words startled Tony who whirled around to find Gibbs looking at him with an odd expression. He shook his head slightly to chase away the dizziness caused by the sudden movement and plastered a huge smile on his face even as he felt his heart clench.
"Oh hi Boss, look I just came down to get a drink and noticed the lights and stopped to enjoy the sight and then I just happened to see the note on the table and couldn't help myself so I read it, it seems that you have a secret admirer boss who would have thought it. I mean not that you couldn't have a secret admirer since you're very good looking for your age, I mean-"
Deciding to stop the nervous rambling Gibbs placed a finger over the other man's mouth as a head slap was out of the question until Tony was completely concussion free.
"You didn't answer my question. Are you really mine?"
Tony's eyes widened and he contemplated his options. It was obvious Gibbs had figured out who his Christmas elf was, though Tony had tried his best to throw him off scent by hiring one of his friends to hang the porch lights and bring in and decorate the Christmas tree. Maybe it was best to fess up now and hope like hell that he didn't end up back in the ER with an even bigger concussion or maybe some broken bones, that was if Gibbs didn't send him straight to the morgue.
Taking a deep breath Tony diverted his eyes from the piercing gaze of the older man and took a deliberate step back from the man. "Look Boss I now this looks bad but if you'll let me explain-"
The word caused Tony to flinch and as he felt the other man move closer to him he hunched down as if bracing for a head slap of massive proportions, but to his surprise Gibbs leaned closer until he was speaking dangerously close to his ear.
"I'm not gonna hit you, I just want you to tell me if you meant it. Are you really mine?"
Squeezing his eyes shut tight enough that it hurt Tony answered the only way he could "Always."
As if realizing what he'd confessed, Tony's eyes popped open and he stared the other man with undisguised fear and looked at the door as if ready to bolt.
Seeing the look Gibbs did what he'd wanted to do for a long time and with one hand pulling the other man closer to him, he pressed his lips to Tony's in a dry kiss.
As they parted, Jethro watched as Tony licked his lips and turned his eyes to regard the older man. With a small smile on his lips the younger man laughed.
"I can't believe you just did that."
Gibbs smiled and pulled the younger man closer before wrapping him into a tight hug.
"I can't believe you did all this so I guess that makes us even."
Tony chuckled softly at that before giving a sigh and melting into the embrace.
"What are we going to do now? I mean I know you're not gay or anything." Tony didn't look up from where his head was resting on the other man's shoulder but he felt the minute tensing of the muscles under his cheek and hands and waited patiently for the answer, hoping against hope that he wasn't going to leave heartbroken after being given hope with that one kiss.
"No I'm not really gay, but I know I do care for you Tony, more than just a friend. So now I'd like you to spend the Christmas with me, seeing as you've gone to all this trouble to make it special for me, I would like to share it with you. We'll see where that takes us and work things out."
"Sounds like a plan Boss." Tony replied with a smile before yawning widely.
Gibbs chuckled witch made the shoulder under Tony's head to shake. "You know I think you can call me Jethro."
"We'll see..." Was the vague response which caused Gibbs to chuckle again.
"Okay come one sleepyhead before you fall asleep on me." Jethro said while turning to guide the younger man up the stairs towards the bedrooms.
"Um, Jethro." Tony spoke hesitantly as he ascended the stairs with his new partner. Gibbs just prompted him to talk with one expectantly raised eyebrow.
"I was just wondering if maybe I could sleep with you tonight. I mean I don't mean anything other than just sleeping but I'd like to wake up with you and I know-"
This time Gibbs silenced the rambling by pulling the other man to a gentle stop and placing his lips over the temping mouth and letting his tongue chase away the words the younger man had been about to say.
As he pulled back he had to smile at the daze expression on the younger man's face and he took Tony's hand in his and pulled him with him.
He didn't say anything but just guided the other man into the master bedroom and pulled the covers back in clear indication that he expected the younger man to get in the bed.
Grinning widely Tony did just that and watched as Jethro rounded the bed and got in on the other side. After a minute of hesitation the older man made a mild sound of annoyance and reached out to pull Tony closer.
Finally as they were settled so that Tony had one arm slung over Gibbs' chest and Jethro had an arm around the younger man's shoulders, both men gave a sigh of utter contentment.
Tony couldn't help but grin as he thought how this year he'd gotten everything he wanted for Christmas and he was just drifting off to sleep when the other man's voice roused him.
"How the heck do you explain the appearance of the tree?"
Tony chuckled "Good little elf never reveals his secrets." he mumbeld which caused Jethro to roll his eyes and gently swat the younger man's ass.
"Wise ass. "
After a small pause Jethro placed a kiss on the almost sleeping man's temple and whispered a quiet good night, which was echoed by the other man.
Hearing the soft snores that indicated that Tony had fallen asleep, Gibbs looked at his peaceful face and pressed another kiss to the closest temple. He had a feeling that they had both gotten what they wished for Christmas and for the first time in a long while he was feeling at peace and he had a feeling that it wouldn't take long for Tony to make him feel happy again and he was hoping that he would be able to make the other man happy as well.
But now he would have to get some sleep so he would be able to get up in a few hours and make sure they would have an unforgettable holiday. Seeing as Tony had done so much for him already, he was determined to repay all the hard work and thought that had gone into decorating the house.
He already had some ideas on how to do that.
With a smile Jethro tightened his hold on the other man and gave a silent thank you for getting to spent the Christmas and hopefully the rest of his life with this wonderful man.
"Merry Christmas Tony" He whispered before falling to sleep, dreaming of the happy Christmases past with his first family and the ones that awaited him and his new found love in the future.
And somehow the house didn't feel all that empty anymore.
HAPPY HOLIDAYS EVERYONE! :D And beware of the Christmas elves... they're crafty little buggers... ;)