Sapphires & Emeralds
Caution: This Romantic Sex Story contains strong sexual content, including Ma/Fa, Consensual, Fan Fiction,
Desc: Romantic Sex Story: Chapter 22 - NCIS fanfiction.An undercover assignment leads to an entanglement for NCIS. Will Abby get trapped in a web of lies? Who IS that blue-eyed stranger who sets her on fire with his touch? Gibbs and Abby pairing. Alt. Universe. Co-written with Zabby.
Bounding out of the elevator, Abby could hardly contain herself, her excitement rising at seeing him again. With a rough and ragged beat, her heart tried to pound its way out of her chest, and she knew she had to tone down her excitement for Jet's state of mind. Walking into her lab quietly, she looked around, wondering if he had gotten bored and was wandering around, or if he was still in her relaxation area. The latter could create an interesting distraction, though she had a task to perform.
Gibbs had returned to her little nest and was sitting, aching head resting on knees, trying to decompress, when he heard a noise and looked up. His chest clenched a little when he saw her, a small smile appearing. She already felt like home.
Seeing his face, his smile, even just hearing his voice, caused all, well most, of her stress to fall away. Her shoulders relaxed, and a soft smile spread across her face. How could she have missed him so much when she hadn't been gone that long ... and really, they'd only just met?
Sitting cross-legged on the bed in front of him, she echoed his greeting. "Hey." Seeing the dark circles under his eyes, a reflection of the aching and tension from the pain of his injuries, she started to brush her fingers through his hair, trying to ease his pain.
"Mmm, that feels really nice." It did, her hand was very soothing. He leaned into her touch. "What are you doing back here so quickly?" Not that he minded in the least.
When he seemed to relax into her hand, Abby decided to move around behind him. She started to rub lightly across his scalp, neck and shoulders. "Well, after my interview with the directors, they decided I should help work with your Agent Fornell in establishing my new identity and past. Seems like I'm going to be an artist, creating works kind of like what you've seen in the lab; digital creations based on autopsy photos, evidence, that kind of stuff. Anyhow, he and Ducky—or wait, it could have just been Ducky— anyhow, they thought it would be a good idea to have you involved in the creation of my cover since our pasts have to link up now. But only if you're ready for it. If not, it can wait a few minutes for you to keep meditating and getting your mind back together."
"Marines don't meditate," he teased then winced, realizing he revealed something that she likely didn't know yet. "I'm a Marine, served fifteen years..." He trailed off then tilted his head to look at her, twisting around, his back cracking loudly.
"You okay with how different we are? Marine and ... not."
"Well, I call it meditating," she teased. "A Marine, huh? Love a man in uniform." For a few minutes she was quiet, her hands moving over his stiff shoulders trying to work out his tension. Reaching up, she brushed her hand through his silver hair before moving back in front of him.
Considering how to answer his question, she smiled into his eyes, the confidence in response shining from her eyes. "I love how different we are. Gives me a lot to explore, new things to figure out. I'm a scientist after all, Jet. You present a fathomless new discovery, something new to learn about. And if my initial estimation is correct, there are many levels to you, Fox. And I can't wait to explore."
He lifted a shoulder and nodded. "Not as much as I want to be, any more. Can't be a reservist with this stuff happening, all these undercover assignments." He gave her a small smirk. "A lot older than you. I bet I'm old enough to be your much older brother, if not your father. And I think we probably have very different outlooks, Inky."
"From every Marine I have ever met or worked with, you're a grunt until you die. And even then, God makes considerations." Pulling her hand back, she rested her head into her hands, her elbows on her knees. "Are you okay with how different we are?" She was fine with it, more than excited at their differences. But he seemed to be the one who was pushing their differences like it was something to be concerned over.
"You associate with many of us?" he asked with a gentle smile. He shrugged, one shoulder hitching up yet again. "I like a challenge. Our differences are challenges for me. Just wondering about you and you being happy with me.
"Only when they come down here as part of an investigation. Besides, I work on the Naval Yard. I tend to see a few men in uniform." Watching him, she was starting to realize just how much she adored his crooked smile when he was shy, the shoulder hitch when he wasn't sure. "You wondering what about me? That I won't be happy with you? I will be. Just as long as you keep looking at me like you were before, like you were going to gobble me up, or like right now, like you could just sit and talk with me for hours."
"Not wondering anything specific," he said. He was trying to clear his mind, even though those thoughts were there just beyond reach all the time. When she talked about the way he'd looked at her before, he stood "Jet Brooks" persona returning in a split second, his breathing a little more measured, posture a little more haughty.
"How was I looking at you?" he asked, pronouncing each word deliberately in the slightly more cultured accent that he'd adopted as his own. He stared at her hungrily, with an intensity he barely kept leashed.
As he stood up, she was amazed at the transformation. Gone was the gentle man who had been talking with her, concerned with her well-being at the forefront of his mind. Instead, the arrogant man from earlier, the one used to getting what he wanted, stared at her from those piercing blue eyes.
Holding up her hands so that he could pull her up to standing with him, she murmured, "Like that."
"Like I want to devour you," he said in a low voice, confidence in his every move. He gave her a challenging look and small smirk, pulling her to her feet and against him. "I do. I want to consume you. I will consume you."
A small gasp burst out of her lungs as her body slammed into his. "Yeah, just like that." Shaking her head of the lust-filled cobwebs that threatened to distract and overtake her life, she bit out, "But not yet. We've gotta get upstairs. Gotta create my identity..." She trailed off as her gaze locked on his lips.
"How the hell are we going to be estranged spouses when all I want to do is wrap you in my arms?" he asked, frustrated. "We'll have to stay in, a lot. Hope we don't have a security detail or they might see a lot more than they expected."
Moving her hands, which were still linked with his, behind her back, she shifted closer to him, smiling. "I think we'll manage just fine. After all, we're supposed to be ex-estranged spouses who have rekindled our marriage. It would only fit that you'd want to wrap your arms around me," she teased.
He pulled her hard against him. "We have to go upstairs, huh," he said, looking into her eyes, holding her tightly. "How can I concentrate when I want to take you hard?"
"Yeah, upstairs," she murmured, her body now on fire as her eyes locked on his. "How can you ... um ... I don't know, Jet." Abby winced, realizing how dumb she sounded. Shaking her head in a vain attempt to clear her mind of its lust filled haze, she tried again. "How about, the sooner we get my identity linked solidly with yours, the sooner you can take me, as hard as you'd like."
"Gonna look forward to that, Abby," he told her, signing words rapidly. Need. Desire. Want. Fate. He stopped his hands and then signed every letter of "fate" and then "meant to be", while staring into her eyes. He wanted to say more but he didn't dare, not yet. The depth of his emotion shocked him and he wasn't that kind of guy. He didn't just fall in love easily. Or like, lust, attraction, whatever the hell this was.
Abby grabbed hold of his hands, bringing them up to her lips. Kissing along the roughed skin, she murmured those words in repetition. "Need. Desire. Want. Fate." But as she closed her eyes, she whispered her own last word. "Destiny." Of the two of them, Abby knew she was the one most open to the idea of fate and destiny. She'd never experienced something like what she and Jet shared, but she'd always believed that the possibility existed. Now if they could only get through these next few months alive.
"Destiny?" he asked, not at all convinced. "I don't know what the hell you're doing to me. For me. With me." He leaned in, nuzzling her. "But we have to get our minds back on the job."
"Destiny. Fate. You and me. Doesn't make sense logically. But I feel complete with you, and when you're gone ... it almost hurts." Her eyes closed slowly as his lips moved over her. "Minds. Job. Right."
He agreed but he didn't know how to verbalize that, so he could only nod. "Sooner we see them, sooner we're alone together," he reminded.
"Than let's get up there, Jet. Because I have a feeling it will be awhile until were alone," she responded.
He gave her another tight hug. "And until then, know what I need is you."
She buried her head into his neck, wondering how she had managed to get through life without him in it. "Until soon," she corrected, not knowing how long she could last without holding or touching him.
"Until soon," he repeated, kissing the top of her head.
Tony took a deep breath as they exited the conference room and the directors and glanced over at McGee and Ziva. "Ziva, will you be okay with working under Fornell while Tim and I are undercover?" It hit Tony suddenly that he'd be without his movies for a long time and he stifled a sigh.
"Tim, can you set up a dummy Netflix account under my alias? I can watch their stuff on demand." Tony needed his movies to focus as much as McGee needed his writing.
"Yeah, Tony. As soon as we have our identities starting to solidify, I'll add the Netflix as part of your credit history." The wheels were already turning in his head, setting up the necessary avenues. He needed to make sure that everything was covered, for Abby, for Tony, for him, even for Jet, because he was the key to Abby's protection.
Ziva stopped and turned to the two men with her. Putting a hand on each of their shoulders, she alternated looking at both of them. "I will work with whomever I need to, to make sure you are all safe. Do not worry, gentlemen. I will make sure that everything is prepared, everything is without defect."
"Thanks, Tim. And a laptop too," Tony reminded. He rubbed a hand over Ziva's arm. "Thanks, Ziva." Tony hadn't expected to be undercover, but he had faith in the team.
"A laptop for all three of us, I believe. I don't know how Jet is set up." Tim began, "but we'll all need to have them in one capacity or another."
Tony nodded to McGee and then regarded Ziva with a small smile. "McGee, start getting things organized. Ziva ... want to talk with you for a couple of minutes."
Tim nodded and gave Ziva a quick hug before heading off to the squad room to find Fornell. Ziva turned to Tony and waited, knowing he would have to begin at his own pace, to find his own stride again as the team leader.
Tony leaned back against the wall, adopting a comfortably casual pose, even though he kept his gaze on Ziva. "Working with Fornell is going to be a challenge, Ziva? He can be difficult and I need you to play nice, especially with Tim and me in the field. You're gonna be outnumbered though. Two Feebs..."
"When have I ever not played nice, Tony?" Seeing the unconvinced look on Tony's face, Ziva changed her tone. "Okay, maybe once or twice. But I would never put your lives in jeopardy. I will hardly be outnumbered, Tony. I am perfectly capable at handling myself with all the feds."
Ziva hadn't met the guy with Sacks yet. Tony wondered if she knew him. "There's Fornell and Sacks and some guy named Sebastian Blumenthal from Interpol. Sound like anyone you ever ran into?"
Moving over to the wall, she leaned against it, mimicking Tony's pose. "Blumenthal? I worked a few ops with a Blumenthal before, from Scotland Yard. I wonder if it's the same man." Ziva had participated in a few risky situations alongside a man who set her on edge. There had never been an opportune time for her to discover if the edge was a good or bad thing between them.
"British guy. Kinda looks like Hugh Jackman?" Realizing Ziva was kind of clueless about pop culture, Tony knew that wouldn't work. "Wavy brown hair, about my height and build, green eyes, okay looking..." Actually, the guy was damned good looking, but Tony wasn't about to admit that. Not to Ziva, anyway. "He's working with the Feebs and us now. Can you work that angle if you know him?"
Tony's description aptly fit the man she knew, but until she knew for sure, she wasn't about to divulge the details from her past. "If it is him, I will, Tony. I cannot guarantee the connection, as my work with Interpol was extensive. But if it is the man I knew, I am sure that his cooperation will only enhance our coverage."
"He and Slacks disappeared," Tony said quietly. "Last I saw them was outside Interrogation. Maybe they're still lurking around." And if they were, they'd been unescorted for a while now. Tony flushed darkly. "Have a look around, see if they're here anywhere. We got wrapped up in who Brooks was and didn't keep an eye on them."
"And if they are not? Should I search them out farther than the building?" Looking over at Tony, she nodded. "I will find them."
"Don't trust Fornell. Call in favors, Ziva." It was Abby and for Abby they'd do everything they could.
Ziva nodded in understanding, both at his spoken words and the meaning beneath. "I will, Tony. I will update you as soon as I know anything."
"Thanks, Ziva," Tony said quietly, warmly.
Martin looked over at Tom and nodded briefly, considering the options of him staying versus him leaving "I can stay or go, but by leaving, it'll give you some time with that young assistant of yours, who has no doubt returned by now."
Shaking his head, Morrow started laughing under his breath. "If you can stand to leave the op in our hands, leave by all means. But do try to not put too many ideas in my head."
"Tobias will keep me informed," Martin said, motioning to his ever present cell phone. "Take a moment, Tom. You brighten up when she walks in the room."
"I'll think about it, Marty. When this op gets on its feet, I'll make sure we schedule regular conferences if it indeed goes as long as we think it might." Morrow stood up in order to escort his friend out, ignoring the suggestive comment.
"Get some rest," Martin said quietly. "I can find my way out, old friend." He knew very well that Tom would probably be up setting the operation into motion for much of the night. "I need to check in with Tobias and then I'll have him and you brief me later. They'll do fine, Tom. I trust my people and you trust yours."
"Rest will come when our people are home again." Tom held out his hand for his friend to shake.
Instead, Martin squeezed Tom's shoulder. "Life is too short for regrets, remember that, my friend."
Tom nodded as Martin left the conference room.
Ducky looked over as Tim reentered the area just as Abby and Brooks came off the elevator. The other operative's face was a blooming constellation of bruises and broken capillaries, but he seemed alert and very aware as he approached.
Ducky nodded to him, turning his attention to Abby and McGee. "Ah, the computer geniuses are here." He had no idea what Special Agent Fornell was doing, but he was eagerly typing away at one of the computer systems, tweaking this or that and muttering something under his breath every so often.
Ducky knew that building a multi-layered identity took time, time that they might not have. Seeing that everything appeared to be under control, he slipped out, sending a silent good luck to Abigail. Before leaving the Yard, he'd leave Abby a note in her lab.
Gibbs drifted over to Toby, nudging him with an arm. "We okay to proceed?" What he was really asking was how Toby's gut was saying things were going, if Gibbs had to worry about more than the task at hand.
"Everything seems to be clear. Since the agents took you out the way they did, your cover appears to be holding." Fornell paused as he saw Abby going over to the desk he was working on, presumably to find out what was going on with the op. It was her life being altered after all.
"They were subtle, Toby. Nobody saw us. Trust me, I was looking." He was getting ready to say more, to warn Toby that she needed to be protected at all costs, when someone tentatively called his name. He turned, noting the young man, the baby faced agent. This should be interesting.
"Special Agent Gibbs?" Tim asked, hesitantly, as he approached the two agents from behind.
Gibbs arched an eyebrow and nodded. "Yeah, I am. You're ... Tim?" He knew he needed to be nice, even if he wasn't feeling like it at the moment.
"Yeah, I am," he began, unconsciously mimicking the other man's words. "I just wanted to ... apologize for earlier, for my behavior." Stammering, he tried to right himself, but the embarrassment over his acts was almost overwhelming. "I've ... never behaved that way, and I have no excuses. But I wanted to say I was sorry ... at least."
Gibbs gestured the man over a few paces away from Tobias and watched the younger man for a few long minutes, letting him really absorb what had happened and stew in his own juices. Then again, he'd pushed the kid long and hard, baiting him much more than he should have. With a brief nod, he extended a hand, waiting to see if the younger man was going to take it.
Reaching out his hand, Tim shook the other agent's with a firm grasp. "Th ... thank you, Agent Gibbs."
Gibbs nodded. "It's okay. I baited you too." It wasn't quite an apology, but it would have to do for now.
Shrugging, Tim looked down. "Yeah, but I should have known better, reacted better than that. My training should have kicked in, but it didn't."
"Your training did kick in," he insisted quietly, wanting to work with this young agent. "You were thinking of protecting Abby, and I appreciate that, and I know she does as well. You're going to be an asset on this operation." Jet reached over, squeezing his shoulder gently.
Tim just shrugged his shoulder, not entirely convinced. But since he didn't want to seem anymore like a whiny child, he looked up at the FBI agent. "Thanks ... Gibbs? I appreciate that. Now let's make sure there's nothing and no one who can crack through Abby's new identity. Any suggestions since it's your op she's being absorbed into?"
"What sort of suggestions?" he asked, watching as the other NCIS agent entered the room and went over to Toby and Abby.
"I don't know. Any areas you'd think would need Abby's background entered into. I only have a vague idea of what's going on with your side of the op, so I'm not sure exactly where I'd need to establish a history for her. Places. Hobbies. Locations. Stuff like that."
Gibbs ran a hand over his jaw, thinking. "You have a wedding date? Wedding announcement. You figure out her college and throw a mention in an alumni newsletter and print it out. Subscriptions to magazines." So many people looked at the big picture and didn't focus on the small details when creating an identity.
"We got married out of the country; it'll make it easier, Mexico, somewhere in the Caribbean maybe. Vacations, Caribbean, maybe Colorado. Hobbies..." Gibbs looked over at Abby. "What does she like? You'd know better than us. Locations. Big cities. Brooks has homes in London and DC, a rental in Manhattan, a place in Newport Beach, California, a penthouse in Chicago, and a small cottage on the beach in Miami. Fornell can give you rental records. She could be from any one of those locations. I'm leaving those details up to you guys. Just ... be thorough. I don't want her compromised in any way, put in any danger."
Gibbs knew he was saying too much and trailed off.
"Wedding, right..." Tim's brain started working overtime, absorbing the information Gibbs gave to him and laying out the details he'd need to work out. So, he didn't notice he stopped the conversation, his side of the discussion dying out.
"Fornell," Tony greeted with a nod and small smile. "Ziva is going to be your NCIS person; McGee and I are going undercover." Tony turned his attention to Abby, nodding. "Two more IDs and backgrounds to set up, Abbs."
"Yes, I'm aware of your assignments. The directors had me start on yours as well. You will be Brooks' bodyguard, and the other one," Fornell stated, gesturing to Tim, "will be Abby's assistant. She, other than being Brooks' estranged, recently reconciled, wife, will be an artist, digital art. She'll be gaining some notice in the art world. I can't make her a complete success yet. It would look too suspicious to have her suddenly pop up, with no backing."
"The other one is Special Agent Timothy McGee, Fornell. Not 'the other one'. Digital art..." Tony nodded. It fit Abby. "Will her tattoos be a problem? She has the ones on her fingers and the ones on her back as well." Tony rested a hand on Abby's back, up high by her shoulder blades. "You okay?"
"A little overwhelmed, I have to be honest. But I'm okay. Nothing that a few more Caf-Pows won't fix. You? You get in trouble?" Despite the talks Abby had with different people involved, she still felt a hard twinge of guilt at the fact she put them into the path of trouble. Yes, it had been their responsibility to handle their own reactions, but that didn't stop her own feelings of responsibility.
"No, we're good, Abbs. Going undercover alongside you. Tim and I are fine. Anyway, we made our own beds there, so don't feel guilty." He smoothed a hand over her back. "Talked to your ... friend a little."
Nerves were starting to get the better of her, though she had no doubt she'd be safe. After all, having Jet, Tony, and Tim surrounding her, protecting her, how could she feel otherwise? No, it was the responsibility of not blowing the op, of not putting the men's lives in danger, of pulling her weight that she was getting nervous about. Maybe I should talk to Ziva about it later ... she thought. "You talked with Jet? What'd you talk about?"
"Yeah, I talked a little bit with him." Tony gave her his most winning smile. "Had to let him know that you're my girl and he'd better behave." Tony gave her a wink, knowing they were going to talk later, when things were calmer. At least with the op and going undercover, he and McGee would have a chance to get some alone time to chat with Abbs.
Turning, Abby pinched him on the arm. "You better not have threatened him, Anthony DiNozzo. I don't want him running away scared 'cause the men in my life have possessive issues." Laughing, she knew he wouldn't, that he was only making sure she was safe. But she couldn't help teasing him a bit on his earlier reactions.
"I let him know how much I care," Tony insisted, lowering his voice and guiding her a few more steps away from Brooks. "And if the old man is scared off by that, he isn't good enough for you, Abby."
"He's not old, Tony. He's mature. And I'm kinda liking that." Holding out her hands, she hugged him tightly, understanding the protectiveness, the brotherly nature behind his words. "And thanks, Tony. I love you, too."
Tony shook his head, chuckling. "Be careful, Abbs. You only have one heart and if he breaks it, I have to kill him."
"I'll be careful. But you don't need to worry. I'm going to be fine. I'll be perfectly safe. I have my guard dogs with me. You and Tim won't let me do anything too stupid. I'll be as safe as I can be, heart and body."
Gibbs moved closer to Tobias, seeing that Tim was in his thoughts right now. He arched a brow to Toby. "What do we have here?"
Fornell rolled his eyes at his agent. "Just an almost old and irritated agent, working at adding an estranged wife, a bodyguard and an assistant to Jet Brooks life. You?"
He couldn't match that so he just gave Toby a shrug and goofy grin. "Just be thorough. Keep her safe, Tobias."
"That's the idea, Jethro. I'm going to get this as detailed and thorough as I possibly can, as anyone could. Gonna get their computer genius, McGee, and your girl, Abby, as well, to help out with attacking the deeper aspects of the backgrounds, make sure their histories are impenetrable. And your expertise and experience will help out, of course, if you could take a look."
"You've got me, Toby." He wasn't a computer guy, limiting himself to the skills he absolutely needed in the field. It wasn't something he enjoyed but in this day and age, he needed to work a smart phone, as well having at least a moderate level of computer knowledge.
"I know, Jethro. I just need you to make sure that every detail you'd think of is covered for her, too. Besides, I'm having a little bit of fun setting up the backgrounds of those boys who threatened you. I can't get to Franks. But I can get a some payback by making his minions a little more uncomfortable."
"Have someone else do it as well. I'm exhausted and I don't want to miss anything." He hated admitting that, but knew it had to be obvious, and he didn't want any weakness to compromise Abby. "What devious plan do you have, Toby?"
"Gonna have Special Agents McGee and DiNozzo running it, as well as our guys back at the FBI trying to penetrate their identities. In addition, the directors will be going over the histories as well. All of us are checking. It's gonna be double checked. Triple checked." He understood how much it cost Gibbs to admit the weakness, but he wouldn't be as good an agent if he didn't recognize chinks in his own armor.
"Good. Good work, Toby." Gibbs squeezed his friend's shoulder. "Sorry I dragged you in here." It didn't matter that he technically hadn't. The fact was that Toby was working long, late hours on his op and that was a failure on Gibbs' part.
"Don't apologize. Besides, you didn't drag me anywhere. I'm going to have fun with this. Can't wait to see the guys' reactions." Chuckling, he leaned back in his chair, pleased with himself.
Looking devious, Tobias explained the men's new backgrounds. "Just planning on linking DiNozzo and McGee in a way that will make it really interesting to see how they handle themselves in the op. But it's nothing that will cause exposure or otherwise put you, Abby, or even those two, in any danger." Tobias knew to add that last part, halting any qualms Gibbs would have for his fun. His friend was showing signs of being overprotective of his new female friend, and Tobias didn't want to get the brunt of his agent's anger.
He turned the computer screen to give Gibbs a better view. "Meet AJ Dial and Timothy McCall. Dial is a bodyguard, long list of experience. McCall is Mrs. Brooks' assistant. Brooks hired on Dial when McCall took up the position with Abby. They're a package deal as it were. Long time ... partners."
Gibbs arched a brow when Toby said they were partners and looked closely at the screen. "Companion life partners?" He chuckled low. "You know the baby faced one ... Tim ... he has it bad for Abby. That was what motivated him getting pissed at me."
"And what about the other one? Think the feeling's shared? Must be some kinda girl to get all the males in the agency, and I imagine the females," he added, thinking of Ziva, "to rise up and protect her. Like a bunch of dogs." Snorting, Fornell looked up at his agent.
"Hell if I know. They look close," Gibbs said, motioning over to them. He gave Tobias an ironic smile, surprised that he was being quoted back. "You're probably violating a hell of a lot of rules and laws, Toby, but it is damned twisted." It was just like his friend to put the screws to NCIS like he was.
"They're gonna be angry. When're you gonna spill the beans?" Gibbs couldn't wait to see their expressions.
"Angry? Probably. Hopefully. But they were the ones who pounded in, bull in a china shop, into our active op. If I have to add them into this, I'm at least going to have some fun watching them squirm. And who cares if they're angry? They'll just have to grin and bare it, Jethro."
Furrowing his eyebrows, Fornell considered his options for the reveal. "Well, as long as these identities stand up to our hackers, then as soon as we're ready. I'm about done here."
"Baby Face ... Tim is merging our histories, Toby. Let's not rush him. We can leave the dossiers with the directors and actually get the physical papers tomorrow with everything else that is being delivered. What do you have planned, paperwork wise? Passports, driver licenses, what else?"
Gibbs sat on the edge of the desk, trying to relax a little. It might take the younger man an hour or more to integrate a history. "You give McGee access to our files yet?"
"Baby Face," Tobias snorted before answering. "Yeah, I gave him access. Before you all joined us. The directors mentioned it'd be a good collaboration, so I sent him a message with instructions. And according to the email I got back, he's been accessing it."
Going back to the keyboard, Fornell started working again. "Gym memberships, book clubs, online chat rooms, rental agreements, the usual. Even managed to create a history of chat in an online art discussion group."
"Great." Gibbs knew that Toby knew this had to be airtight. "How about emails back and forth from us. Why'd we divorce anyway? Don't tell me either of us cheated." Like a character actor, he needed to get deeply into his role, that required the details lain out so that he could become Jet Brooks seamlessly again. Gibbs would be left in this squad room until the op was complete.
"Her career. She wanted to start to focus on it; her name was starting to be tossed around. Your job wouldn't allow for enough time together. So, she pulled away. Thinking you chose your career over her, so she was going to do the same. Irreconcilable differences," Fornell explained it short and brief.
Gibbs nodded, glad there wasn't any betrayal. "So why now? Why're we trying again right now?" He looked across the room at her. "How'd we meet, Toby? She's not Jet Brooks' usual type."
He swallowed hard, feeling a little uncomfortable. "This can work, Toby, right? We can sell this, can't we?"
"Of course we can, Jet. Don't get cold feet now." Considering his questions, he was slow to answer. "How'd you meet? How about at an art show? It'd be conceivable for Jet Brooks to attend an event like that. Especially if there are powerful people involved. And ... you saw each other again at another art show. In fact, one where she was being featured. Eyes met across the room. Chemistry. Sound good?"
"Yeah, sounds damn good." He zoned out, imagining how they might have met, the chemistry between them. He knew he was smiling faintly, deep in thought as Toby worked the past history.
Tony drifted over toward the group after an hour or so. Abby and McGee were working on one terminal Fornell and Gibbs on another. Ziva hadn't come back and Tony knew she was working her contacts to find out anything they might have missed. He'd been reading Gibbs' file and making sure he knew everything he could about the agent and the man.
"How're things going, Agent Fornell? Are we almost done?"
Looking up from the computer, Fornell narrowed his eyes at the man heading up the NCIS team, Jet's new bodyguard. "Almost, just waiting for my guys back at the FBI to see if they can discover any holes in your new identities. After that, we should be all set."
"Okay. You looked over the work McGee and Abby have done? That all mesh with what you have here?" Tony leaned in close, knowing he had to make the peace. "Thanks for your help and cooperation here, Fornell."
Glancing at the other man in surprise, Fornell replied hesitantly, "Yeah, no problem. Just doing my job. But don't worry. Your forensics scientist will be as safe as anyone can possibly make her undercover. The rest will be up to you and Agent McGee, as well as Gibbs." Hearing a beep come from the computer, a smile lit up his face. "Looks like we're in the clear."
Standing up, he handed DiNozzo, McGee and Abby the folders of their new identities. "Abigail Brooks, aka Abby, wife of Jet Brooks, artist, specializing in the creative expression of the digital medium. Timothy McCall, assistant to Mrs. Brooks, life partner to AJ Dial, bodyguard to Mr. Brooks." Crossing his arms over his chest, he waited for the fireworks to light.
"Life..." Tony's eyes widened and he looked at Fornell for a long moment, taking in the smirk and the folded arms. He was getting screwed and he made a mental note for Ziva to make Fornell's life a living hell. He wanted to yell and scream at the other man but doing so would probably screw up his career, mark him as a homophobe when he was anything but.
He opened his folder, looking at it. Education at Penn State, took the civil service exam and worked for a couple of years in border patrol, security officer with large and small firms, finally working with Mr. Brooks. And he and Timothy had been a couple for a good long time.
"Was that necessary?" he growled instead. "And how're you gonna explain me never being with Brooks before?"
McGee couldn't say a word as reality crashed over him. How could he have not guessed what Fornell was up to when he was running the background? And how was he supposed to be Tony's — AJ's — boyfriend? Who was supposed to be the man in the relationship? Groaning silently, he knew exactly who was who between the two of them; Tony would make sure of that.
Letting out a good, hearty laugh, Fornell took in the furious look on Tony's face and the pale look of dread on McGee's. Oh, this was going to be fun, he thought. "Necessary? Probably not. Enjoyable? Most definitely. As for how you came to be in Mr. Brooks employment ... When McCall took up a job as Mrs. Brooks assistant, he recommended his partner's services as a bodyguard for her husband. And how could the Brooks' turn down such a wealth of experience?"
"And I wasn't with him tonight or any other place recently?" Tony said. "What'd I do, leave when the wife did?" He gestured to Abby. "To be with my partner?" Tim was even more shaken up than Tony was and he started running through movie scenarios to share with him. I Now Pronounce you Chuck & Larry would be a good starting point, even though they were only a couple and together for insurance benefits.
Jet watched, wincing inwardly. "Tobias," he warned quietly, playing good cop for the moment. "You did it, don't be a sore winner."
"Oh, I'm not, trust me, Jet. I could have handed out the dossiers in a more crowded environment." Fornell eyed Jet, curious. He seemed to be identifying more and more with the ragged lot of NCIS agents. And he wasn't sure if he liked his agent doing that. "As for where you've been, you were only recently hired on as Brooks' bodyguard. Tonight in fact. Abby didn't pick up her assistant until after she left Jet, after her art started gaining some recognition."
He looked apologetically to Abby who had made a little distressed sound at the mention of her leaving Jet. "I'm sorry, Abby, but it was the only way I could come up with to logically explain your divorce without using infidelity. From the little I've seen, that would have been worse for you." Despite his hard exterior, Fornell did try to be sensitive, especially around people like Abby Sciuto. He had no beef with her, though he might have a little one with her friends.
Abby walked up to Fornell and gave him a quick hug. "Thanks," she whispered before stepping back.
Gibbs angled his head, nodding, not liking this divide he could feel emerging between him and Toby. Regardless of how he felt about the situation, he was going undercover with three from NCIS. Tobias would be in his gilded cage and Gibbs would be the one getting down and dirty, his life on the line. He had to trust these people with his life and if they went into it with a perceived beef against the FBI, nothing good could come of it. They had to understand that he was different, he was a maverick and people like Toby and the director understood that. He wasn't a suit, never had been.
Then Toby completely redeemed himself by paying special attention to Abby. Gibbs knew he had to take control of things. "Everyone read through your histories. Familiarize yourself with them. When we leave this building, we become our identities. And you men need to come to terms with that, however you need to."
The cop was hardened, he was pissed but he'd fall in line, but Baby Face—Tim he mentally corrected—was looking green around the gills. "Can you each do this?"
Tony didn't like Gibbs taking control of the conversation, but he knew he had to calm down and approach this rationally, so he echoed Gibbs' motions, looking into the eyes of Abby and then McGee and finally the deep blue gaze of the man who had taken leadership. He nodded slowly, asserting that he could handle this.
Tim nodded slowly, taking his cue from Tony. For Abby and the success of the op, for proving that NCIS was a viable agency in her own right, he'd do his job, even feigning a relationship with Tony. It wouldn't be too bad, he thought. He could be involved with someone far less desirable.
Timothy McGee! He screamed to himself in his head. What are you thinking? Tim knew his thoughts were on a dangerous path, so he concentrated on memorizing the details of his new history, finding it surprisingly parallel to his own life.
Gibbs walked closer to the younger man, looking him in the eye. "Tim, I need your word." He seemed the most shaken up by all of this. "Can you sell it? Can you believe it in your gut?"
Tony glanced over at Abby, trying to see how she was doing with all of this. This was the moment of truth. If Tim or Abby couldn't handle this, the op would be dead before it even started.
"Of course I can sell it. I'm not a green probie anymore," he growled, narrowing his eyes at the other man. Realizing that Gibbs only meant to keep everyone safe, Tim relaxed, standing straighter. "You have my word, Gibbs. You all do."
"Who said you're a probie?" Gibbs asked, mouth almost getting hung up on the word. He didn't know the status of NCIS agents or how long they'd worked with the agency, and he was a little concerned over the kid being touchy.
"Tim, my neck is on the line here so you can be damned sure I'm gonna check and make sure you're comfortable with this. I have to for the sake of my op."
"Sorry, that's Tony's word for me. He's called me that since I started working on Franks' team. You have my word, Gibbs. I will sell it. When I leave here, I leave McGee behind." He gulped at that, the realization of what was about to happen slamming onto him. He could do it; it was just a bit to take in so quickly.