Chapter 18: Breaking a Rule II

Rule #1 was to keep it out of work.

But Tony's fingers itched to touch Gibbs sometimes.

There was the day that the copy of Pacci's performance appraisal came back, the cogs and wheels of bureaucracy having continued to chew and swallow and digest and, ultimately, regurgitate the paperwork until it was time to be filed, despite the fact that Pacci was dead. Gibbs wasn't Pacci's direct supervisor, and it was Fortin who got the final copy, but Gibbs had written a field advisor's reference for Pacci since the agent was working toward a separate certification. Pacci had come out with Tony and Gibbs sometimes before Kate joined them and even since on several occasions. What Gibbs hadn't seen was the parts of the performance review that Pacci himself had to write, in response to the rest. More inspired in writing, though no more verbose, than in speech, Pacci's admiration for Gibbs and his appreciation for his no doubt straightforward direction for improvement was evident.

As was the guilt on Gibbs' face. To Tony at least.

Tony didn't know what the paper said, but he didn't hesitate to read it when Gibbs stalked out—for coffee presumably—and no one else was around. It wasn't even 9:30 yet. It was going to be a long day. The hard swallow, the closed-up look on Gibbs' face were still fresh in his mind twenty minutes later when Tony pressed B for Basement and the lab, to retrieve the lab results by hand, just to get out of his chair. Gibbs joined him just as the doors were closing, coffee from the stand down the street—he knew it!—in hand.

Tony, uncomfortable with the silence, ventured. "Three coffee morning, eh boss?"

Gibbs glanced down at the cup, grunted.

Tony turned toward the other man, leaning one shoulder against the wall of the elevator and boldly looking the other man over.

Gibbs' expression was neither amused nor intrigued. "You need work to do, DiNozzo? Nothing better to do than look at me?"

Tony smiled, despite the rebuff. He straightened, leaned over and hit the elevator stop button.

Gibbs, if anything, glared harder, if that were possible.

What Tony wanted to do was to touch the other man's hand, to reach out and place his hand on Gibbs' neck, feel the warmth and let Gibbs be warmed in turn. He wanted to touch the other man's face, stroke down the still smooth surface of his cheek. He wanted to step in close, so close that his own suit jacket, cotton/silk blend button-down, and tie pressed up against Gibbs' jacket and shirt so that they would be breathing in each other's air, and maybe Gibbs would let him pull him closer with one hand, so that the clothes didn't matter anymore, just their bodies. But he didn't think that Gibbs would let him.

So he went for it. Flipped the elevator switch, turned back and into Gibbs even as he caught the superglare and planted one on the guy. Pressed his lips in a sneak attack of carefully banked desire and intention and didn't let up until he felt Gibbs soften, return the kiss, even though his hands stayed in place, one at his side, one holding coffee. Tony kept it short but couldn't help trailing his lips down Gibbs jaw and neck to whisper in his ear.

"I know I just broke a rule. Want to break another one?" It was only Tuesday. He didn't want to wait til the weekend.

"You call that breaking a rule?"

Gibbs was just as quick, quicker probably, than Tony, and in an instant, the hand not holding the coffee had come up to take possession of Tony's face, and he pushed Tony hard into the wall, continuing the kiss until he damn well decided it was finished. The taste of fresh coffee and the spicy bite of something uniquely Gibbs, the rasp of slightly chapped lips, the heat of his mouth and tongue drove Tony to struggle a little in a bid to regain dominance. But just then Gibbs' fingers loosened their grip and slid gently into Tony's hair in counterpoint to the hungry grasp of his mouth. Any desire to fight drained away.

Tony had forgotten where they were, just let Gibbs take what he needed and do what he wanted and his eyes stayed shut when Gibbs finally let up, face still close, like he didn't want to move away, but breath irritatingly steady when he, Tony, was so undone.

It was Tony who found the strength to move first, though, pecking Gibbs on the mouth one last time before straightening and smoothing his clothes into place, rubbing his face and mouth so he didn't look like he'd been ravished and avoiding Gibbs eyes as he punched the button that made the elevator lurch down again.

Tony thought about saying something. But anything he could think of was too much like an apology or was too...he didn't know...something...sentimental or touchy-feely or...squishy. He figured he'd leave things as they were.

Breaking a rule with a kiss seemed like better comfort than most.

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