A/N: This is the last of my "get inside Tony's head" review of the series. It takes place during the final episode, "My Master, the Chili King", but reviews everything from "Jeannie, the Matchmaker" on. Hope you enjoyed the series!
"You're leaving early, today, aren't you Tony?" one of the security guards asked when Major Anthony Nelson stopped to sign out of NASA Cocoa Beach.
"Yeah, well, Jerry," Tony began as he bent over to sign himself out, "I wanna surprise my wife."
"You lucky dog," Jerry said jealously. "You're wife's quite a woman."
"Yeah!" Tony exclaimed, half laughing to himself. "Well, I'm quite a man," he said under his breath. "I'll see you tomorrow, Jerry."
With that, Tony wasted no time. He walked out of the building and to his car and started his journey home.
He liked doing these things to surprise Jeannie. It was worth leaving early to see her eyes light up when he walked into the doorway. Jeannie's delight was always tenfold when he came home early in the middle of the week. Tonight, Tony was looking forward to channeling that delight into excitement. He had a well-developed plan that was sure to succeed: he would seduce her with wine and music and spend the remainder of the evening in her arms.
Tony grinned thinking about how wonderful the evening would be.
Of course, he didn't have to seduce his wife in order to spend time in her arms. Ever since he had opened her bottle on that beach in the Pacific, Jeannie had been very affectionate.
His smile grew melancholy as he recalled the beginnings of their relationship. At first, Jeannie had perhaps been overly affectionate. She was still very affectionate, but she was learning ways that were more acceptable to display it. She listened to him when he told her that he preferred a handmade gift for their sixth month wedding anniversary. He was glad she accepted his suggestions and was so eager to please. She was, in general, more cautious about showing Tony she loved him.
Except, of course, when Jeannie had been overzealous and blinked herself into his isolation lab after returning from the moon. It had been a mistake made out of her sheer joy at being able to see him, but it had caused the problems nonetheless.
If he was being honest with himself, Tony was actually very glad that he had Jeannie there with him during those three weeks. Life without her would have been especially boring, and even the trouble she brought was secretly welcomed.
Jeannie's excessive affection had also caused a bit of trouble when she blinked him home during his lunar training. Dr. Bellow's sleeping pill had forced him asleep, so until Jeannie told him that they had won a trip to Hawaii, he had been completely unaware of any trouble.
Tony supposed that the biggest change since the beginnings of their relationship was how willing he was to accept her affection. He was much more willing now. And as he looked back, he wondered why he had ever been reluctant do to so.
But after all, he had been engaged when he first met Jeannie. But the longer he stayed with Jeannie, the longer his engagement to Melissa seemed like an entrapment. Luckily, Jeannie had saved him from that mistake, though perhaps with selfish motives.
It hadn't been until after they had gotten engaged that Jeannie admitted to the role she played in breaking up his engagement to Melissa. However, years had passed and any affection he had felt for Melissa was long gone. Tony knew Jeannie had always been jealous, but he had never expected her to still be jealous when he received a letter from his high school sweetheart.
He and Bonnie Crenshaw had been one of the hottest items in Fowler's Corner High. They went steady for around two years and for a long time, a lot of people assumed they were going to get married. But Tony had never seen his relationship with Bonnie as anything that serious, and when he went away to college it was the perfect opportunity to break things off.
He had certainly never expected her to look him up all these years later, and he never expected her to later become a source of jealously.
Of course, it had all been a misunderstanding when the real Bonnie showed up just as Jeannie was trying to impersonate her, but it had worried Tony when he thought that Jeannie didn't believe him when he told her not to worry. "I want you to understand that you're my wife and I love you and there's never been anyone else," he had said to Bonnie, when he thought she was Jeannie. And Bonnie, naturally, had been scared, which had scared him as well.
Tony had brought Bonnie home, sat her down on the couch next to him, and thrown his arm around her. He did his best to communicate to who he thought was his wife that there was no one else in the world for him. That other women didn't interest him anymore. That she was all that mattered to him. He understood that everyone needed to be reassured every now and then, but he was scared that Jeannie seriously doubted his love.
But, again, it had all just been a misunderstanding. Jeannie knew, deep down, that Tony's heart was all hers. Bonnie and Biff had left his house in a hurry and finally he was able to personally reassure his wife.
"I never wanna see a Bonnie Crenshaw again, you understand that?" he asked as Biff and Bonnie walked out of their home.
"Oh, yes, darling. I understand. Never, never again," Jeannie replied, peppering his face with kisses.
"And that goes for you as Bonnie Crenshaw, and the real Bonnie Crenshaw, and you blinked up to look like Bonnie Crenshaw," he asserted.
"Yes, yes, darling! I love you, too!" Jeannie answered adamantly and kissed him again.
Tony chuckled at her and wrapped his arms tightly around her waist, pulling her into him. He kissed her back then, and pressed his mouth firmly against her own. He held there for a while, moving his lips over hers and when he pulled away he looked softly at her.
"Jeannie, I love you. There has never been anyone else, and there will never be anyone else." He saw her nod her head gently and swallow nervously. "Do you understand?"
"Yes, master," she said.
"Good," he said with a short nod.
"I love you, too."
Tony grinned at her and then lowered his lips to hers once more.
On the whole, however, Tony knew that the immature jealousy with which they conducted their early relationship had long since gone.
They had both since matured, and Tony was glad that they had. If they had still acted as they had four years ago, Tony never would have asked Jeannie to marry him, and they would still be living a lie.
Instead, Tony's eyes were opened. And since they had gotten married, Tony couldn't imagine how his life could be any better.
He spent more time with Jeannie, which had been expected and even welcomed. Now, whenever the Bellows invited him over for dinner, he was able to take Jeannie with him. The amount of time he spent with Jeannie displaced the amount of time he spent with Roger, which caused some tension at first. But after a bit of adjustment, the three of them were back to life as normal with one fundamental difference: Jeannie was now part of his public life as well as his private life.
That adjustment had been a little harder, but to Tony's delight, it had been much smoother than he would have ever imagined. She learned how to act, at least around others, as a mortal wife would. She learned what conversations were forbidden in public, learned what other women regarded as daily activities, and learned, even too well, how to live on his salary.
He had never expected her to be so zealous about saving money once he explained charge accounts to her. The results at first were embarrassing. But he found it incredibly endearing that Jeannie would go to such lengths to make him proud, to do as he wanted. In the end, Major Gregorian only found their lack of electricity and running water and their overflow of hippie friends to be festive.
Tony didn't have the heart to try and convince Jeannie that she was going overboard. He learned that he would see her happy than save himself from any imagined embarrassment that her underdeveloped modern social skills might cause him. As a result, he had found himself being more passive than ever in the action of his life. He did his work, did his best to make Jeannie happy, and continued to try and keep their secret. However, he almost felt as if their secret would inevitably be discovered, and therefore, knew it was only a matter of time before they had to move on and start all over again. So instead of wasting his energy on preventing every possible thing that came his way, Tony spent his time worrying about his wife.
One thing that he had neglected since his wedding, despite his best efforts, was his honeymoon. Their sudden engagement and their haste to get married had ultimately meant that there had been no time to arrange for one. He tried, time and time again, to get a few days off so that they could take a short trip. But despite his best efforts, they had yet to be able to steal away.
The one time he had been able to get some leave had turned out to be a disaster. Tony, Jeannie, Roger, and the Bellows had all gone off on a vacation, but due to a mix-up with the hotel reservations, Jeannie had felt forced to blink up a thirteenth floor for their lodgings. As a result, rather than being able to spend the week leisurely together, Tony and Jeannie had to recruit Roger's help to keep the Bellows in their rooms.
The only other time Tony had even had the opportunity to ask for time off, General Schaffer's decision had been influenced by his anger at Tony.
It had been an accident, sure, but Tony had startled General Schaffer while he was taking the final shot of a rather important pool game. Then, after also accidentally breaking General Schaffer's hand, Tony failed to win the rematch. With his loss, any chance of getting some time off was shot.
A few months before, Tony had been convinced that a honeymoon would no longer be needed.
When Roger had returned to the meeting that day and dropped a few less-than-subtle hints that he had discovered that Jeannie was pregnant, Tony had been shocked beyond belief.
He had heard, of course, of newly wed couples getting pregnant right away, but he had never expected that it would happen to them. After all, he hadn't even been sure when they got engaged if they could even have children. He hadn't been sure of any of it, actually. He assumed that female genies were built exactly the same as women, but he didn't really have any confirmation until once especially awkward conversation that he had with Jeannie a few months after becoming engaged.
Jeannie's answers, however, weren't exactly a medical opinion. She hadn't been any more certain of their biological compatibility than he was, and so a general feeling of apathy prevailed over the possibility of children. They had both been willing to wait for a while, and at the moment, adjusting to a more private life had taken their attention away from having kids.
So Tony was completely shocked when Roger told him that Jeannie was pregnant, and consequently ran out of the meeting, picked up some chocolates and flowers, and drove home as fast as he dared.
In the end, it had been a false alarm. It had only been Mrs. Djinn-Djinn that was pregnant, and the prospect of children had once more been postponed. The event, however, had brought the idea back into their minds. They had laid there in bed that night and talked about the future and whether or not it held children. The same conclusion was reached, that it wasn't a priority to worry about at the moment, but they affirmed to one another once more that they wanted to have kids together.
The boys at the base had almost felt cheated after going through all the trouble of arranging a baby shower for Tony and Jeannie, and they paid for it dearly. Three days after the news came out that Jeannie wasn't pregnant, the Bellows dropped off their nephew Melvin to spend the day with them.
Somehow Tony knew it was a test. The Bellows had wanted them to see what it was like to have a child, and it didn't help that they were eager to get rid of the boy. And with good reason.
Melvin turned out to be more trouble than he was worth. He made Tony especially nervous, which lead to Tony having a short temper with Jeannie. Before he even had a chance to apologize, however, Melvin had run off with Jeannie locked safely inside her bottle.
Tony got her back eventually, but that day with Melvin had convinced him: for the moment, the two of them weren't yet ready for children. Sure, they wanted them eventually, but not for a long while.
More than anything, Tony wanted to live a normal life with Jeannie. He was going to spend the rest of his life with her, with or without children, no matter what. He wasn't going to let anything stop them.
He had been reminded of the harsh reality of their situation just a few weeks ago when he had the wildest dream. Tony had dreamt that Dr. Bellows had learned that Jeannie was a genie, and that the two of them finally had to start their life over again.
When he woke up, Tony had been relived to say the least. It had only been a dream, but it had reminded him how precariously they had to balance their lives, which was why he was doing his best to enjoy what time he had with her while he could.
And that time was right now.
Tony pulled into his driveway, parked his car, and walked into his house with a spring in his step. He threw his hat and briefcase aside and strode over to the fireplace where he quickly built a fire. He then selected a bottle of wine from the bar, and sat back down to stoke the fire. It was there that Tony sat, looking over the bottle of wine, when Jeannie walked in to greet him.
"Oh, hello, darling," she said as she approached him.
"Hi," he replied with a chuckle as she leaned over to give him a quick kiss. "Well, I've lit the fire," Tony began when they pulled apart and continued with, "got a nice bottle of wine, and if you'll turn on the music I think –"
"Oh, darling," Jeannie said, interrupting him, "Uh… no. I'm afraid not. We have a guest," she informed him.
Tony's heart instantly deflated. "A guest? Who?" he asked, then from behind him he heard: "Cousin Tony!"
He knew then that their evening had been ruined. Rolling his eyes he muttered, "Lock up the silver," and prepared to face yet another evening of adventure with his genie out of the many they would continue to face as man and wife.