But I have promises to keep, and miles to go before I sleep, and miles to go before I sleep. (Robert Frost)
The cargo flight home from Israel was miserable. They’d hit turbulence about two hours into a twelve-hour flight and it felt like hours before they emerged. Tony normally didn’t mind the less than luxurious accommodations of a C-130, but in this case it was just adding insult to injury. Literally, his injury. All the bouncing and jolting had his arm throbbing.
All the same, he’d insisted on going into the office as soon as they hit the ground. He wanted to get his report done and then fall over somewhere. Preferably somewhere with a lot of medication and an ice pack.
Typing with one hand was a bitch. He scribbled on a sticky-note to have McGee get him some speech-recognition software sooner rather than later.
Several hours later, after Gibbs had come in, dealt with Abby and McGee and Palmer and all their questions and issues about Ziva’s absence; after he’d erased more misspelled words than his final report would contain, Gibbs accepted his report without mentioning the mistakes Tony hadn’t been able to weed out.
He tossed it on his desk without reading it. “You ready to go home now?”
Tony nodded. “More than.”
They were silent the whole way. Gibbs stopped to pick up the pizza Tony hadn’t noticed him calling in for, but even then, they didn’t talk.
Once in the door, they sat at the kitchen table, sipping beers and finishing off the pizza. It was almost one in the morning local time, but with all the time-zone hopping they’d done, neither one of them had any idea how many hours they’d been awake. Gibbs had napped a bit on the plane, but he was reasonably sure Tony hadn’t. He was also pretty sure Tony wasn’t taking his pain meds.
Gibbs put the last two pieces of pizza on Tony’s plate before getting up and leaving the room. He came back in with the Vicodin the E.R. doctor had prescribed and a muscle-relaxer from his own medicine cabinet. He took Tony’s hand in his, turned it palm up and deposited the pills. He folded Tony’s fingers around them. “Take them. Now.” He leaned over and grabbed a bottle of water from the fridge and set it in front of Tony.
Tony scowled at him, but popped the pills in his mouth and chased them down with a slug of water from the bottle Gibbs had kindly opened for him.
Gibbs came around behind Tony, very gently kneading his shoulders through his rumpled suit jacket. “You hit your head when she knocked you down?”
Tony twisted around to glare at Gibbs. “How do you even know about that?”
Gibbs just gave him A Look. A Look that said Tony should really be over asking that sort of question after eight years of working together. Tony sighed, resigned to the fact that he’d never find out if he couldn’t figure it out on his own. “No, I didn’t,” he finally answered Gibbs’ question.
“Bang your arm up again?” Gibbs asked.
“I’m fine. Really.” Tony dropped his head as Gibbs began rubbing the knots out of his neck.
Gibbs decided that arguing with Tony at this point wasn’t worth it. He was pretty sure that Tony had long ago passed the point where he could tell what he was actually feeling. “You’ve been in that suit for like, four days. Why don’t I help you out of it and into the shower?”
Tony twisted around again, ready to make a comment about how long Gibbs had been in his clothes when he realized that somewhere along the line, Gibbs had changed from the gray shirt he’d been in when he’d come to Tony at the hospital into the navy blue shirt he was wearing now. “I went down the gym to shower and change while you did your report,” Gibbs told him.
“Ah,” was all Tony could think to say.
“Come on,” Gibbs said, offering Tony a hand and helping him to stand. “You need to clean up and get some sleep.”
Tony let Gibbs pull him up and turned so that he’d be right in Gibbs’ space. He put his good arm around Gibbs’ neck, his hand in Gibbs’ hair. “Please, boss…”
Gibbs kissed Tony’s forehead. “Do you really think you’re up for it tonight, Tony?”
Tony pulled back to look Gibbs in the eye. “I need this. I need you. I don’t even give a damn if I can get it – I just.. Gibbs, I just need…”
Gibbs pulled him in and kissed him gently to stem the stumbling words. “Go get cleaned up. Then we’ll see what you’re up to.” Gibbs led him by the hand into the bathroom where he sat him down on the commode and carefully removed his sling. Tony winced as he tried to straighten his elbow for the first time in days. Gibbs set the sling on the edge of the sink and dug his thumbs into Tony’s biceps, helping him stretch the sore arm.
Gibbs thoughts turned over and over as he helped Tony undress. Tony didn’t usually ask for much when it came to sex. He usually let Gibbs set the pace and decide what they’d get up to on a particular evening. He seemed to be fine with whatever Gibbs chose as long they both got off in the end.
“This can come off?” Gibbs asked, tapping on the black Velcro and elastic contraption Tony wore in lieu of a cast. Tony nodded and Gibbs carefully undid all the fasteners, loosening it up as much as he could before gently slipping it over Tony’s wrist. The bruising was extensive and Tony’s hand and fingers were still swollen. Gibbs sighed. He wanted to say something, but knew there was nothing to say. They both got hurt in the line of duty. It was a part of who they were. Nothing he said would change that for either of them.
He helped Tony stand and quickly but carefully pulled off Tony’s gray jacket before unbuttoning his shirt and pulling that off as well. Tony kicked off his shoes and Gibbs helped him step out of his pants and socks.
“Guess it’s a good thing I don’t wear underwear,” Tony said with forced levity. “Don’t know when I would have had time to change them.”
Gibbs shook his head. He had to admit, from a lover’s perspective, Tony’s habit of going commando was attractive, but from an agent’s point of view, he couldn’t understand how the hell Tony could be comfortable like that.
Once Tony was naked, Gibbs reached over and turned on the shower to let the water warm up. Once the water was running, Gibbs gathered Tony up in his arms. Neither of them had had a particularly good week, but he knew Tony was not only the one with the physical aches and pains, he was also the one holding himself responsible for Ziva’s ultimatum; which made him responsible for Gibbs’ decision which made him responsible for the fact that McGee and Abby were pissed that Ziva hadn’t come home. Gibbs hugged Tony tight to his body. One hand rubbed up and down Tony’s spine, the other drifted lower, lazily caressing Tony’s ass. “Get in the shower. Get cleaned up and holler if you need help with anything. Then we’ll see about what you brought up in the kitchen.”
Tony brought his good arm up and pulled Gibbs in for a long, hard kiss. “Please,” he whispered again.
Gibbs patted Tony’s butt. “Go,” he said, nodding to the shower.
Once Tony was behind the shower curtain, Gibbs leaned on the sink and hung his head. He was tired. He knew Tony was in far worse shape, but he was really starting to look forward to eight or ten hours of sleep.
Tony wanting to have sex despite how wrung out they both were surprised Gibbs less than he figured it should. Tony liked sex. That much had become evident from the first time they’d done it. What had taken him time to notice was that Tony used sex as a form of communication. A form of connection. So it wasn’t that surprising that he wanted to connect like that tonight.
No, the real surprise was Tony all but saying that he wanted Gibbs to fuck him, even if he couldn’t get it up, wouldn’t get off.
Gibbs shoved away from the sink. “I’m going in the bedroom for a minute. Holler if you-“
“If I need anything. You said that, boss. I’m just taking a shower. Not wrestling a Siberian tiger,” Tony answered.
“Right,” Gibbs said curtly, leaving the bathroom, but leaving the door ajar.
Gibbs stripped out of his clothes and put on sweats and a t-shirt, following Tony’s lead since they were at home, and forgoing the shorts. He flopped down on the bed, feet on the floor, head on the quilt.
Outside of some quick and usually drunken, fumbling, mutual jerk-offs with a couple of other Marines, Gibbs hadn’t had a lot of experience having sex with guys. Tony’d had less than Gibbs had thought he would, but what he lacked in experience, he made up for in enthusiasm. Gibbs knew he was a product of both his generation and his occupation, but he’d never been completely comfortable with the idea of Tony fucking him. They’d done it a couple of times, because Gibbs figured he couldn’t always expect Tony to bottom for him, but after a less-than-stellar time was had by all, Tony had told him that he was completely okay with Gibbs being on top most if not all the time.
Gibbs didn’t quite get it. When Tony had been in him, it hadn’t been awful and Tony had been very careful not to make it painful, but Gibbs clearly didn’t get from the experience what Tony did. But Gibbs had always just chalked it up to Tony being less repressed than he was and more willing to go with the flow. He hadn’t thought Tony would actually enjoy it so much as to want that kind of connection on a night when Gibbs would have thought even Tony would be too tired to contemplate anything more than sleep. It left him wondering what he hadn’t done right those few times that he hadn’t gotten as enamored with being on the bottom as Tony clearly had.
When he heard the shower stop, Gibbs decided it was time to give Tony what he wanted, what they both needed, so they could both get some sleep. He rolled to his feet and went back into the bathroom.
The shower curtain had been pushed aside and Tony was still standing in the tub. Dripping and staring at the wall.
Gibbs grabbed a towel and put his hand under Tony’s elbow to help him balance. “Come on.”
Tony nodded and stepped out onto the bathmat. He still had his injured arm cradled against him like it was still in the sling. Gibbs quickly toweled off Tony’s hair and body, saving his left arm for last. He carefully patted down the bruises before wrapping the towel around Tony’s hips and tucking in the end. “Sit,” he said, pushing Tony back down onto the closed toilet.
Gibbs grabbed his shaving cream and shook the can. “Look up; close your eyes.”
Tony couldn’t help but smile a little as he heard the ‘shhhh’ of the shaving cream followed by the scent of the lemon-lime cream and Gibbs moving into his space. He held still as Gibbs spread the cream over his face. “Alright, hold real still,” Gibbs told him as one hand came to the back of Tony’s head to hold him.
Tony had never let anyone do this for him before. Well, one girlfriend in college had tried. He’d had so many little nicks and cuts on his left cheek that he’d refused to let her finish and had done the other side himself. But he trusted Gibbs with his life. Literally. So he leaned back into the hand supporting his head and relaxed as Gibbs gently ran the razor over his cheek, his chin, his neck, the other cheek. He kept his eyes closed as he heard the sink go on and off and felt a warm cloth wiping away the last few traces of foam.
When Gibbs ruffled his hair, Tony moaned and reached up blindly, groping until he found Gibbs’ neck and he could pull him down into a slow, lazy kiss. He didn’t open his eyes until they broke apart.
Gibbs waved Tony’s brace in front of his eyes. “You need to wear this to bed?”
Tony looked at his arm, weighed the freedom of having the thing off for a few hours with the possible consequence if he bumped his arm into something in his sleep. “Yeah.”
Gibbs carefully maneuvered the brace back on, fiddling with all the Velcro tabs and loops and buckles, watching Tony to make sure he wasn’t tightening it too much or doing any other damage. When he seemed to have it settled, he wrapped his arms around Tony’s waist. “You still want what you said you wanted in the kitchen?” When Tony shifted to pull Gibbs' thigh against him, Gibbs could feel the start of Tony’s erection press back through the towel. “Guess so.”
Gibbs took Tony’s good hand and led him to the bedroom. A few steps from the bed, Tony pulled back sharply and his eyes got wide.
“I’m okay,” he said sharply before closing his eyes as his head looped. “Oh, those drugs you gave me are kicking in. You better put me to bed, boss.” The last was said with as much of a leer as Tony could manage while only half-conscious.
Gibbs shook his head. “If you just want to go to sleep – “
Tony jerked his head up, very serious and very coherent. “Please. I know what I’m asking. I know what I want. I’m… a little sleepy, but you’re the one who’s gonna end up doing all the work. Please, Gibbs.”
Gibbs brought him in and kissed the end of his nose. “Okay. Crawl in bed while I turn off the light.”
Tony pulled the blankets back. Showing just a little foresight, he took the towel off his hips and laid it across his side of the sheet. He carefully lay down on his stomach, one leg bent, his pillow tucked under both his head and chest.
Gibbs turned off the light leaving only the moon, stars and ambient city light shining in. He pulled both a condom and bottle of lube out of the bedstand drawer and tossed them next to Tony’s hip. He shucked his clothes and moved to Tony’s side of the bed. Tony was so still and quiet, Gibbs hadn’t quite given up on the idea that Tony wasn’t up for this no matter how many times he insisted he was. Gibbs took Tony’s broken arm and pulled it up above Tony’s head, laying it next to his pillow. “Don’t want to bump that arm.”
Tony smiled into the pillow. Gibbs could be such a softy when no one else was looking. He’d seen Gibbs be sweet to kids and scared women before they were together. Now that they were, Tony had been the recipient of that quiet gentleness a few times. It was equally reassuring and arousing. He purred as he stretched into the hand Gibbs was running down his spine.
Gibbs popped open the lube and poured some into the cleft of Tony’s ass. Using one finger he slicked all the way down to Tony’s opening. “This what you want, Tony?” Gibbs whispered.
“Gettin’ there,” Tony mumbled as he wiggled, trying to bring himself into stronger contact with Gibbs’ fingers.
Gibbs pressed one finger deep into Tony’s body, Tony’s body opening to him automatically. He slid his finger in and out lazily, noticing that his own body was getting with the program. He used his other hand to squeeze the base of his cock when Tony clenched around his finger as he withdrew it. “Oh, Tony…” Gibbs realized that it had been since before he’d gone to L.A. that they’d had time alone together. No wonder Tony wanted this so bad. No wonder his own body was reacting so strongly, so quickly.
He pulled his finger out, added more lube and went back to stretching Tony with two fingers. He cricked his fingers as he pulled back, feeling Tony tense as he scraped gently across his prostate. He put his other hand on Tony’s back when Tony squirmed against the towel beneath him and he pulled his bent leg up so that it was under his chest. “Easy…” Gibbs whispered, “I know it’s been a while.”
“Too long,” Tony answered breathily. He wasn’t sure why but the relative lack of foreplay had him more anxious than he’d been in recent memory. The idea that he’d asked Gibbs to fuck him, so Gibbs was preparing to do exactly that was heady.
“You ready?” Gibbs whispered into Tony’s ear.
“Oh yeah,” Tony moaned and then wiggled just enough to get comfortable while Gibbs moved behind him.
Tony’s eyelashes fluttered on the pillowcase he heard Gibbs unwrap the condom and put it on. The next thing he was aware of, Gibbs was sliding the tip of his cock up and down the crack of Tony’s ass, teasing.
“Please,” Tony whispered again.
Gibbs took pity on him, on them both really, and pressed the tip of his cock against Tony’s entrance. Gibbs waited, listening for, feeling for the rhythm of Tony’s breathing. When he felt Tony exhale, he pressed in. Slowly sliding in all the way, in one long, agonizing stroke.
“Yesss….” Tony hissed, his eyes now closed, his good hand gripping the pillow.
Gibbs noticed that Tony was unusually lax beneath him. He wondered if it were just that Tony was finally relaxing or that the muscle-relaxer was making him mellower than usual. He shifted his angle to be sure he was hitting Tony’s sweet spot and began a slow rhythm, making Tony writhe.
After a few minutes of silent building, Gibbs managed to snake one hand around to Tony’s cock. Despite his earlier admission that he might not have been able to get it up, Tony was hard and pulsing in his hand.
Gibbs faltered as he felt Tony’s cock jump in his hand. His quick fumbles with other Marines had been about doing whatever was needed to get the other guy off as quickly as possible. Gibbs honestly didn’t think he’d ever enjoyed touching any of them, but there was occasional wisdom in the ‘any port in a storm’ mentality and it had beat beating off, yet again. But now, with Tony it was so different. He buried himself in Tony’s heat and stopped for a moment, just cataloging the way the soft skin covered such hardness in his hand. If he were the sort given to poetic thoughts, he might have realized that there were so many parts of Tony’s whole being that could be described that way. Core of strength and solidity under a loose, soft cover.
“Move,” Tony whispered harshly. “Come on, please.”
Gibbs gave up the introspection and began moving with a purpose. Tony was right; they needed this. Needed the connection. But they also needed sleep sometime soon. He gripped Tony’s hips and began moving in a rhythm that had become their tried-and-true.
After a few more thrusts, Tony started pushing back. Not with his usual force or enthusiasm, but enough to let Gibbs know that he was ready to come and collapse. Gibbs leaned over Tony’s shoulder and drew his teeth across Tony’s earlobe. “Come for me, Tony.”
Tony leaned his head back into Gibbs, turning at an extremely awkward angle to kiss Gibbs. “Almost there.”
Gibbs moved his hips just a bit faster, squeezed Tony’s cock just a bit harder.
“Oh yeah. Like that, just like – Oh!” Tony’s eyes screwed shut and Gibbs could feel Tony’s cock twitch and pulse. As Tony’s body spasmed around him, Gibbs felt his own release wash over him.
Any other night he’d have fallen across Tony’s back, laying on him until Tony inevitably complained that Gibbs was too heavy. Tonight, he rolled carefully next to him, panting and fighting the incipient need for sleep. With a great sigh, he sat up and removed the condom, tying it off and tossing it in the trash. “Come on, Tony,” he whispered as he heled Tony roll just far enough onto his side that Gibbs could pull the towel out from under him. Tony rolled back onto his stomach with an ‘oof’ and Gibbs lobbed the towel in the general direction of the hamper. He pulled the quilt back over the two of them as he lay back down. Knowing that moving Tony would not only risk bumping his arm, but probably be more hassle than Gibbs was up to. So instead, he just curled around Tony’s sleeping form and kissed the back of his neck. “Sleep well,” he whispered, reasonably sure that Tony was already there.