Camping with Gibbs
"Okay, so – joint operation?" Vance couldn't quite keep the grin off his face. Gibbs was grinning from ear to ear, Fornell not quite so much.
"A week, stuck at a campground, with DiNozzo and McGee? I figured the two of us could handle it; leave them here."
If it were possible, Gibbs' grin got wider as he climbed to his feet. "Come on, Tobias, let's show the boys what real camping is all about."
Still complaining under his breath, Fornell followed Gibbs out the door, allowing Vance to finally give in to his laughter. With a smuggling suspect that used camping areas to possibly conduct his business, it was the perfect cover, but part of him wanted pictures as he imagined the geek and the city boy camping with Gibbs and Fornell.
Downstairs, Fornell settled in to watch the show as Gibbs broke the news.
"All right, you two. We're all going undercover. Closest we'll ever get to a real paid vacation on the job."
"Boss?" Tony DiNozzo looked at his team leader and the FBI agent behind him.
Across from Tony's desk, McGee also had a worried expression. The last time he'd seen such glee on the older men's faces, he'd ended up sleeping with their joint ex-wife. "This isn't about Diane again, is it?"
Gibbs caught Fornell's arm as he tried to move closer. "Nope. Got a suspect in the Barton case who likes to set up in public campgrounds. We're going to go babysit him for a week."
"The four of us?"
"Yep." Gibbs looked like he was having way too much fun. "So grab your sleeping bags and toothbrushes plus any other camping gear you might have, otherwise, you'll be camping Marine style. We leave in the morning. Oh, and McGee? Google yourself a picture of poison ivy before we leave."
Tony waited until the two older men left before spinning around to stare at Tim. "McGee, we're going to die."
"No, we're not." He paused, waiting for DiNozzo to remember one fact about him. Eventually, Tony's eyes widened and a hopeful look crossed his face.
"Okay, McScoutmaster, tell me you have a plan."
"Of course I have a plan, Tony."
DiNozzo gave a sigh of relief as he dropped his head. "Thank God."
Tony had to admit he was nervous, standing on the curb and waiting for McGee to pick him up. He had his go-bag packed and he'd even gone out and bought a sleeping bag, an item he'd never owned before, but other than that, McGee was providing everything else for the two of them.
A honk pulled him out of his thoughts as a pick-up truck pulled up in front of him. McGee leaned out the window. "Throw your bag in the back and let's go."
"Where'd you get the truck?" Tony looked around as McGee merged into the traffic heading into DC. It was a lot newer than Gibbs' old truck, but a long way from being the latest model.
"Borrowed it from the Head Scoutmaster. I should probably just buy it from him, I think I use it more than he does." Tim checked the mirrors and changed lanes while Tony craned his neck to better see what all was packed in the bed of the truck, but it was mostly covered up and tied down. "Don't worry, Tony. We've got everything we need."
"Gibbs said he was taking care of food."
"Yeah, well, do you want to just eat his idea of camp food for a whole week?"
"Good point." Tony thought about the op for a moment. "So, what do you think? We're brothers, Gibbs is our dad and Fornell is our uncle?"
Tim knew exactly where Tony's mind was going. "You just want to annoy Fornell all week by calling him Uncle Toby." Tony didn't say anything, but the grin on his face was answer enough.
"So, has DiNozzo ever been camping before?" Fornell considered himself past the age of enjoying the idea of sleeping on the ground, but the idea of watching the two younger men suffer through the week made it worthwhile.
Gibbs knew exactly what his old friend was thinking. "Just look at it this way – it'll beat anything you'd be missing on the boob tube." Laughing, they pulled into the Yard only to find another truck already waiting for them.
Tony jumped out as soon as they parked in back of them. "Dad, Uncle Toby, is this going to be a great week or what?"
Fornell thumped his head against the side window as DiNozzo danced outside. "Just shoot me now."
"Hey, this op was your idea."
"Shut up, Gibbs."