Special Agent Jethro Gibbs/Anthony (Tony) DiNozzo, Xander Harris. Angel/Spike.Rating:
14 (for v.occasional language & nature of relationships)Spoilers:
Set post s7 Buffy and anytime post s2 NCIS though non-specific there are very brief spoilers for several eps up to then.Warnings:
Angst, H/C, General D/s dynamic - no nudity/smut, pre-polyslashDisclaimer:
Neither BtVS, Angel or NCIS belong to me. No offence is intended and no money has or will be made.Summary:
NCIS are investigating the murder of a Marine when they find the beaten and battered body of a young man who is at death’s door. Inexplicably, Tony feels a connection forming with the young man even before he wakes up. But something was done to their victim and even though he refuses to provide them with any information on the people responsible they’re pulled into his world anyway. A/N:
Complete & posting over a few weeks.
Xander stirred, he felt oddly detached from his body: like he was surrounded in cotton wool. His brown eyes blinked open and he looked up blearily. There was a man hovering over him: green eyes and messy dark brown hair, he had a worried look on his face but as Xan looked at him his lips turned up in an almost goofy smile.
“Hey there, good of you to join us,” the soft American accent told him; Xander couldn’t place it, perhaps it was a mixture. Had he really been in the US?
“Hey,” he replied, his voice sounding weak and scratchy, he barely recognised it.
His eyes fell tiredly shut for a moment before he forced them back open. “Where am I?” he asked, rather belatedly realising that it must be some kind of hospital, but not knowing where.
“Hospital, you’re safe now,” the gentle concerned voice told him.
Safe? Had he not been safe before? He couldn’t remember what had happened.
“Hospital where?” Xander asked quietly as his eyelids once again felt too heavy to keep open.
A little frown furrowed the handsome brow of the man that was peering down at him. “You don’t know or don’t remember? You’re in Washington DC.”
“I don’t know if I don’t remember or if I didn’t know to start with,” Xan tells him tiredly.
The man looks as if he understands just before Xan’s eyelids win again. How the hell did he get to DC, the last he remembered…actually he wasn’t sure what he last remembered.
“Who are you?” he asked, curiously. He was fairly sure he’d remember the handsome brunette if he’d known him before…fairly sure! He pushed his eyes open again.
“Special Agent Tony DiNozzo.” There was no flash of hurt as the other man told him his name so Xan concluded they hadn’t met before.
“FBI?” Xan asked, confused when he processed the whole name.
“NCIS,” Special Agent DiNozzo told him.
“Oh crap I didn’t go and join the Navy did I? That would so suck,” Xan groaned, closing his eyes, desperately trying to remember.
There was a soft amused chuckle, “No.”
“How can you be so sure?” Xan cracked a single eye to look up at him.
“We ran your prints, if you’d joined up it would have come up. We don’t know who you are. You got a name?”
The ex-scoobie rolled his eyes. “Duh, course I do.”
The amused chuckle became an all out laugh, it was rich and warming, Xander wanted to keep hearing it. Tony DiNozzo was both easy on the eyes and the ears.
“Care to share?” the Federal Agent asked with a teasing tone.
“Guess?” Xan cracked a small smile.
That laugh came again. “Gimme a clue, is it something normal or something out there?”
Xander’s eyes dropped closed and he took several shallow breaths. “My head hurts,” he told him in a pained whisper.
“You’re already maxed out on pain meds,” Tony told him sympathetically.
Was that a hand running through his hair, he couldn’t make his eyes open to look up. “Normal…fairly?”
Xander stopped fighting the tug to sleep and let the hand soothe him under, his breathing evening out.
“Damn,” Tony said softly, “Gibbs is gonna kill me.” Still, he couldn’t regret it, the boy had obviously been in a lot of pain and doped up to the eyeballs.
“Tony?” Xander asked when he came round again, he felt disorientated again but that one name and face were still in his head.
“He had to step out,” another voice said.
Xander forced his too heavy eyelids to open and looked up at the man. He was much older than Tony, had silvery hair and the most intense blue eyes. He looked as concerned as Tony had. “Why are you all so handsome?” he asked and then wondered where the question had come from.
The lips quirked up in a half smile. “Who’s all?
“Feds, well, NCIS Feds anyway, if I’d known you where all that hot before I mighta…well I dunno…stopped by to say hello or something. Is it the Navy thing, or a Marine thing? I can guess I can see it being either and oh my god what the hell am I saying?” Xander’s eyes widened comically in horror at the words that were falling from his lips.
“That’ll be all the drugs they’ve got pumping into you,” the man said knowingly, seemingly unbothered by the rambling.
Xander tried to lift a hand to pat the side of the smooth looking cheek but the hand was uncooperative…fortunately.
“What’s your name, Son?” the man asked.
“Xander,” he found the word just fell from his lips where he’d teased Tony with it. He gave a slow blink, lids too heavy to lift back up straight away.
“What happened? Am I in trouble?” he asked, not really wanting to know but figuring he should try and find out.
“You’re not in trouble,” the voice told him gently. “What do you remember?”
Xander’s brow furrowed even with his eyes still closed. A slew of memories flashed through his mind then but they were not ones he could share. Nausea welled up and he almost felt like he actually turned green. The man suddenly had him turned on his side with a bowl waiting. He retched up nothing but bile but it gripped tightly at his stomach and insides and wouldn’t stop like he was trying to throw up his liver.
A solid hand rubbed soothingly at his back and the urges started to ease. The man, whose name Xander still didn’t know, helped him lie back down and then wiped gently at his mouth.
“The others?” Xander asked, his mouth tasted foul and his voice sounded rougher than ever but he had to know.
“You were the only one we found there, the others were all gone. We think they thought you were dead.”
“Comforting,” he managed to quip, not really feeling the humour. “There were cages.”
Xander tried to shake his head but it came out like more of a jerky rocking motion. Pain, sharp and intense shot through him and he gasped, tears prickling the back of his eyes. “Who’re you?” he asked, trying to focus on something other than what had happened to him…to all of them.
“Special Agent Jethro Gibbs,” he introduced himself, he knew he should have done it sooner but there was just something about the kid that threw him off balance. Tony had said the same.
“Ok, gotta ask, what’s the difference between an agent and a special agent. And how much did your parents hate you to call you Jethro?” His eyes widened again, “Goddamn brain filter…always fails when it’s needed most.”
Jethro just gave a small teasing smile in response though. “You’re pretty fun when you’re stoned, can’t help but wonder what you’re like normally.”
“Pretty much the same but with less pain and a slightly better ability to keep my mouth shut…not much…just slightly,” he tried to smile but his lips felt dry and cracked, smiling threatened to split them open and he knew that would hurt.
Gibbs chuckled; there was something likeable about the kid. He wasn’t sure how he was going to tell him about his injuries.
“How bad is it?” Xander asked suddenly. “People only go from laughing to serious face if there’s something bad.”
He hadn’t even realised his face had changed, maybe it hadn’t and the boy was just incredibly perceptive. Not many people have Federal Agents sitting by their bedside waiting for them to wake up.
Xander closed his eyes letting the weight settle a moment before forcing them open once more. “That’s gotta be the vaguest answer ever. Tell me, please?” He wasn’t above begging, no sirree.
“Ruptured Spleen, bruised kidney, broken leg, concussion…”
He tried to feel the parts that were meant to be damaged but couldn’t get past the fog of the drugs. Jethro had trailed off and he looked up at him. He felt like he would choke on the way his throat seemed to close up at the look in those blue eyes. “What?”
“Your back was broken in two places. They’re fairly sure you’ll never walk again.”
Dully, Xander could feel the hand that was wrapped around his, he thought he might be squeezing the fingers back tightly but he couldn’t be sure. Evil had taken his eye, but a shaman had given him that back accidentally, now he’d lost his legs and there’d be no such opportunity. He’d be more of a liability than ever. He was out of the fight permanently it would seem.
“Oh,” was all he could say.
“We need to know who they are, Xander, anything you can remember about them could help us catch them,” Gibbs gently prodded.
His eyes felt hot and his face felt wet. He was crying, he knew he was but he just couldn’t bring himself to try and push the tears away.
“You can’t touch them,” Xan told him quietly. “No one can, they’re a law to themselves.”
“Xander, I assure you, we will find them. They killed one of my Marines, I have every intention of making them pay.”
The brunette shook his head. “You don’t understand.”
“Then explain it to me?” Gibbs urged.
He shook his head and closed his eyes as the tears ran down his face. There was silence for a long time and then a soft cloth gently cleaning his face.
He wasn’t sure if he wanted to call the Scoobies and let them know what had happened. They’d be worried about him, but if he called then they’d come running and he wasn’t sure he could handle that right now. Besides, would they even know he was missing?
“I was in Texas,” he said softly, “I don’t know how they got me from there to DC. These are powerful people, Special Agent Gibbs; you can’t get to them. I don’t think you should try…they can make you disappear…you and all your friends. Make it like you never existed. You should let it go…they’ll have already moved on.”
“How can you say that?” Gibbs asked him angrily, “After what they’ve done to you? Still could do?”
“They’ve already done it, they can’t do any worse. Even if they find out I’m still alive, I’m not a threat to them anymore.” That was what had got him in this mess in the first place.
“And all the other’s that they still have?”
Xander squeezed his eyes closed, tried to pretend they weren’t his responsibility, like he didn’t have to do something to try and save them. “You’ll get them killed if you try.”
Gibbs was frustrated, how could the guy just lie there and act like he didn’t care. He could actually do something to help find those animals and he was refusing. “You don’t seem to understand, you’re our best chance…” he huffed.
“And you don’t seem to understand,” Xander opened his eyes and looked up at him. “There’s nothing you can do.”
Jethro gasped, the boy’s eyes were glowing green, what the hell?
“What?” Xander asked as he took in the man in front of him who was now looking at him like he’d grown an extra head. Maybe he had?
“Your eyes, they were brown…now they’re…” Jethro used to be a Marine and had then spent 15 years with NCIS, he’d seen some scary shit in his time, but that just took the biscuit.
“Fuck,” he said succinctly as he squeezed them shut and turned his head away. “I can’t help you Special Agent Gibbs, I won’t have people’s deaths hanging over my head.”
Gibbs frowned deeply but decided that now wasn’t the time to push it. “We’ll talk about this again,” he said determinedly. “You got anyone you need contacting to let them know where you are?”
Xander thought about it, he really did. Ever since they’d closed the Hellmouth, the Scoobies had slowly drifted apart. They’d grown up in a battlezone and their friendships were forged in a war…one they didn’t need to fight alone anymore. They each had their own special projects after: Willow had Kennedy; Buffy and Faith took it on themselves to train the new slayers; Giles discovered that Dawn was a mini-me and watcher-in-training; Xander took himself off to find all the other new slayers out there; and, Spike…he was gone. They drifted, each of them committing verbally to keeping in touch, but a couple of times a month or less was the reality. They got together at Christmas, that had been the last big thing and that had been seven months ago…or there abouts. They probably didn’t even know he was missing.
He wasn’t sure how long he’d been held while they tested and pushed him. He didn’t know everything they had done, but he felt different. And Gibbs had looked at him, had said his eyes were different and Xander knew what they’d done. They’d made him into something else, something no longer entirely human. He couldn’t handle the way he’d be treated, he’d be useless to them now and pity was one thing he’d had enough of when he’d lost his eye.
When the boy turned to look at him again, the green eyes were gone and those sad chocolate brown eyes were back in their place. Gibbs wondered if he’d imagined it all.
“There’s no one,” Xander told him.
Gibbs studied him a moment before nodding. He didn’t know if he believed him or not, or if he was running from something…someone. Hell after what had happened to him, he really couldn’t blame him.
“Get some rest, if you need something shout, we’ve got someone on your door just in case,” Jethro told him, his hand resting on the warm muscular arm.
Xander resisted the urge to snort, if they wanted to get at him they could, but they really didn’t need to now. They’d already had him.
Xander swam towards wakefulness, it was like swimming through tar, and he ached from the mental effort. Finally his eyes fluttered open and without turning his head he could see that the chair beside his bed was occupied. A familiar handsome face with messy hair was down-turned reading a book. His eyes though looked like they were closed. He took a moment just to study him.
He’d been surprised that he’d fallen asleep the minute that Gibbs had shut the door, he’d been convinced that he was just going to lay there with the whole mess playing over and over in his head until he went crazy.
“It helps if you try reading with your eyes open,” Xander said with amusement.
The head looked up, eyes open, and his lips pulled up in a wide smile. “You’re awake…again?”
He was slightly taken back by the genuine pleasure in the man’s face and voice. “Nope, just thought I’d talk in my sleep…how’m I doing?”
“Pretty good,” Tony said with a grin, “I’d give you an eight.”
“Only an eight?” Xander pouted.
“Oh god, don’t do that. I’m powerless against that,” Tony’s face looked full of fake fear. “Ok… a nine, but I refuse to go higher, I’ve gotta leave room for improvement.”
He couldn’t hold the pout and smiled.
Tony laughed. “You’re bad,” he said as he wagged a finger at him.
Silence fell for a few long minutes and only the sound of the clock on the wall ticking could be heard. Xander became all too aware of it; each tick sounding like someone was banging a door in his head. His eyes captured Tony’s and he could hear something else, slightly faster than the ticking of the clock and more…thuddy. Between each thud was a rushing sound. And then the whoosh of air like a strong breeze. His own breathing sped up as he started to panic in realisation of what he was hearing: Tony’s heart beat, the blood rushing through his veins and his steady breathing.
Tony’s eyes widened as panicked eyes met his: wide in fear and now a vivid green in colour. His breathing was speeding up, hyperventilating and he was whimpering. Ordinarily, he would have run screaming but there was something about the young man’s fear that pulled him in and before he knew it he was gently stroking his hair and holding his hand firmly.
“Loud,” Xander managed to get out with a whimper. He was fighting hard to get his breathing under control. Tony’s touch grounding him.
He didn’t know how to handle this, thought his head would explode from the pain of each thump echoing in his ears. But despite the little skip and jump that Tony’s heart had done when he’d looked at him, it was even and steady. Instead of trying to block it out he focused on it, concentrating on letting it lull him, imagining that his ear was pressed against the solid chest.
His breathing started to even out and the tension in his body drained away as the panic subsided, but still everything was so loud. He could hear conversations outside as clearly as if he were taking part in them, the sound of traffic rushing by outside through triple-glazed windows, the sound of someone else’s heart monitor. He whimpered again.
Tony didn’t know what else to do except offer his strength and comfort. The grip on his hand was strong and he couldn’t help but wince slightly. The grip relaxed and the other man’s breathing calmed. He looked down at him, the younger man had tears running down his face and it just about broke his heart to see.
“Sorry,” Xander told him, not really sure why he was apologising, but it felt like he should.
“No need to be,” Tony soothed, his hand still stroking the long brown curls. “You wanna tell me what that was?” he asked.
Pained eyes opened, still green but slightly less vivid. “They did something to me,” Xan told him, unsure what else to say if he was asked to elaborate.
“No shit?” Tony snorted as he used his heel to hook around the leg of the chair and pull it closer. He sat back down without losing contact.
Xan gave a tiny smile and fell asleep.