Family Secrets Part 20
Xander walked down the stairs towards his father's desk. It had been a very busy week as he had searched for the right house for IWC to buy. It had to be big enough to hold everyone that would be working in the D.C. area which meant at least seven bedrooms or something he could convert into bedrooms fairly easy. On top of that the location had to be close enough to the hot spots where they could get there in a hurry but not so close as to bring work home with them. He'd finally found one that very morning. It had originally been set up as a private school for foreign diplomat's children but the place had turned out to be too small after the school got going and they had been forced to move. It had worked out for him and the bonus had been it wasn't too far from his father's house. He'd been searching for the house during the day then in the evening he'd had to go through the files to figure out which slayers would be best for the house and who could be moved from where. By the end of the day he'd been really glad he hadn't had to do that for the witch space or the watcher spaces. Willow was going to move here at least for now. She'd said she needed the change but he was certain it had more to do with a certain techno geek/mystery writer named McGee. He'd been teasing her ever since she had told him and the way she blushed told him he was right. Spike was taking the assistant watcher position and he was the head watcher for the house. He just hoped that he didn't let anyone down. It was a big responsibility. He worried that perhaps he wasn't right for the position but he knew that Giles and his friends supported and approved him doing it which gave him some confidence.
Gibbs looked up and gave Xander a smile as he watched him walk over. "How did that prospect go?" He'd talked with Xander every night and had learned from him how frustrating it was to find just the right place. He was just happy that his son was staying in town for the foreseeable future.
"Perfect. We sent in a bid which I think the owners will jump on since they've been stuck with the place for a while now," Xander told him. "And the nice thing is I don't have to modify it much. I just have to update a few things to get it to code. If all goes well we should be able to move in by the first of the month. Of course then the real work begins," he said with a shrug of his shoulders.
"Oh. You mean actually going out and finding the problems," Gibbs stated. He checked his coffee only to find it cold and almost empty. He threw the cup out and motioned for Xander to walk with him. "Going for coffee," He told his team even as he led the way up the stairs and towards the elevators.
"Yeah but first I have the scheduling of who goes on what patrol and where," Xander told him. "Not to mention figuring out who cooks which night, when to hold training, not to mention schooling for the girls since all of them except Faith are still in high school. If it was just finding the problems and dealing with it, that I could handle but it's all the administrative stuff as well along with research and..." He broke off with a shake of his head. "There are times when I think about all that I'm responsible for and I wonder if I've bitten off more then I can chew."
They'd gotten into the elevator by this point and Gibbs reached over to flip the emergency stop. He looked at his son and smiled. "Xander if you weren't capable of all this I seriously doubt Giles would give you the job of running the house. When I first took over for my buddy Franks as leader of the team I had so many doubts. Would I be able to lead others, how could I ever hope to fill his shoes, what if someone gets hurt because of me....and so on. I wondered what the Director was thinking in putting me as the lead on the team. I seriously questioned his judgment on the matter especially as we worked our first case. Then I got a call on the second day of the case, just when I was ready to walk into the director's office and tell him he needed to assign someone else as lead; I just had no idea what to do. The phone call was from Franks and he'd stated he just wanted to check to see how I was doing. I remember his exact words to me were 'Probie I know you feel like your in over your head...' I had no clue what else he was going to say because my pride and stubbornness stepped in. I wasn't about to let him know I couldn't handle it. I told him I was just fine and could handle the situation. Found out later he couldn't have been prouder; that he'd remember how he'd felt and had planned on trying to encourage me and instead it wasn't needed. I know it seems overwhelming but you can do this Xander. You just need to relax, handle one thing at a time, and don't let on that you are figuring it out as you go."
"Never let them see me sweat," Xander said with a grin. He remembered how Giles had been when he'd first met him. How confident he'd seemed and how they'd all looked to him to have the answers. Most times the man hadn't and had said they would have to research but Xander remembered Giles always remained calm, cool and collected in the beginning. Then he thought about Wesley when he first arrived in Sunnydale and how the man had been just the opposite; unsure, confused and weak. None of them had respected the man and they kept turning to Giles for the answers even when Giles hadn't had them but always seemed confident that they could find them. He nodded and flipped the switch to get the elevator back moving. "Thanks dad. I needed that advice." It was also nice to know that there was a time when his father hadn't had all the answers.
"You're welcome. Of course if you mention this to my team I will deny it," Gibbs told him with a grin. "Can't let them know that there are times when I might not know everything."
"Naturally," Xander said with a matching grin. They left the elevator and headed for the small shop where Gibbs got his coffee and Abby's cafe-pow. "So I heard your date with Faith got interrupted the other night but that you have something planned for this weekend."
"Yeah some demon decided to make a grab for her as we were walking to the restaurant. Fight ensued and she got covered in demon blood or as she put it she was slimed," Gibbs stated. "I ended up taking her back to the hotel and we had dinner there with the others. Not really what I was hoping for. We were going to try again last night but we had a case that we didn't finish up until an hour ago so I had to cancel but we are scheduled to have the weekend off. I'm hoping the two of us can get to know one another better. With the group the other night I got the distinct impression that Faith didn't feel comfortable telling me things."
"Yeah Faith has a history," Xander stated. "And it is one she's going to have to tell you herself about. Maybe you should set up dinner at your place. I can make sure Spike and I are gone for the night. That way you have the place to yourself."
Gibbs thought about that as he got his coffee and then nodded. "You know that's not a bad idea. Give us some privacy so she doesn't have to worry about anyone over hearing. You sure the two of you can be gone? Don't really want to chase you away. I did tell you that you two could stay as long as you wanted."
"Yeah I know but I think this is a good cause and I can figure out something for Spike and I to do. Don't worry," Xander stated as they headed back out. "I just want to make sure you guys get the chance to know one another. I think you'd be good for each other but you both need to talk about your pasts and accept one another. I know it might not be easy but I really think it will be worth it."
"I think it will be too," Gibbs stated as they walked back. "We plan to take things slow and get to know each other. We both know we have pasts to deal with and we'll do that. I am going to suggest you don't push Xander. I can see the matchmaker in you. Let us work it out on our own ok? Give us a chance and then if I mess up you can make some suggestions."
"Fair enough," Xander said chuckling. "And here I thought I was being subtle. Oh well I'll practice my skills with Willow and McGee. Those two are going to need the help. Willow hasn't really dated the last few years and she can be a little," he paused as he thought of the right word. "I suppose insecure is the word when it comes to dating. She doesn't think of herself as date material. She's gotten better over the years but with not dating for awhile I'm sure she's going to need some reassurances and pushes in the right direction."
"Well I will admit I don't know a great deal about Tim's dating habits but I have noticed he's not as active as Tony who is quite the ladies man," Gibbs stated. He walked over to the elevator and pushed the button for it. "He seems to have come out of his shell the last few years. Perhaps between the two of us we can work on helping them get together."
"Sounds like a plan to me," Xander said while getting into the elevator. "I know they have something planned this weekend but I don't know what. Willow didn't want to tell me which makes me think it's something I would razz her about."
"Mmm," Gibbs said. He led the way off the elevator on the floor beneath his and over to the stairs. "I'll see what I can find out."
"Ok. Why are we taking the stairs?" Xander asked while following up to the next floor.
"I'll show you," Gibbs said and then motioned for him to be quiet. He led the way over to the one spot where he could hear his team without being seen.
"So Probie where are you taking Willow this weekend? I heard you on the phone with her. I know you have plans; so spill," Tony said as he leaned back in his chair.
Tim looked over at Tony, "Why do you care what we're doing? We're going to spend the day together and that is all you need to know. Actually you don't even need to know that but since you do you don't need to know any more."
"Evasive...mmm must be something you know I wouldn't approve of. Now I'm really curious. Somehow I doubt you'll be going to a rave or a Goth club and I can't picture you at some fancy French restaurant," Tony said. "You aren't going to a Monster Truck Rally are you? Nah even you wouldn't do that. Come on Probie you know you want to tell me."
"I don't think so Tony," Tim stated. "You know Gibbs is probably going to be back any second. You might want to get your report done." He turned back to his computer hoping Tony would drop it for now.
"Tony, Tim is right. It is not your business," Ziva stated as she looked from one to the other. "You know curiosity killed the dog."
"Cat, Ziva. Killed the cat," Tony corrected her.
"Cat, dog...either way it is a dead animal," Ziva stated as she threw her hands up in the air. "You do not want to end up as a dead animal Tony and you will be if you don't finish your report before Gibbs get back."
Gibbs took that as his cue and came in. "Reports," he barked out while moving towards his desk noting that Tony was now sitting straight up.
Xander was trying not to laugh. That was one way to stay a step ahead of the team. He followed his father to his desk and kept his back towards the team knowing if he looked at them he would burst out laughing. "Well I will let you get back to terrorizing your team. Now that I have the house found and the staff figured out I can have a relaxing evening. Join Spike and I for dinner?"
"I should be home by then. Want me to stop and pick up anything on the way home?" Gibbs asked. He stood at his desk and watched as Tony set his report in Gibbs' in box. He nodded to his senior field agent even as he listened to Xander.
"Nah Spike and I will get it all," Xander told him. "See you in a few hours." Before he could move away Gibbs reached over to give him a hug. A smile spread over his face as he hugged his father back. "Take care," he said once he was let go. He waved to the rest of the team while turning to leave. Overall the last couple of weeks had been unexpected but he wouldn't trade them for anything. Gibbs was a good man and he was turning out to be a great father. He was marked by Spike and they were planning a bonding ceremony. He had a real family; one that he was proud of and loved. Right then he thought life couldn't get any better then this.Author's Note: I just want to thank everyone who has read, reviewed, and/or recommended this story. It means a great deal to me. I do plan to continue this story in sequels and making it a series but for now I need to take a small break from it.