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By: Stacy L.A. Stronach
Notes: I've played around with the physics of the universe and put the full moon on Christmas, so yes, I'm aware it isn't accurate. The joy of writing, you can make the universe do what you want it to and call it "creative license".
This was written for SAC 2005
And a big thank you to Titti, who provided me with the Italian translations within the story. Her help is deeply appreciated.
Summary: Holiday story with a twist.
***"Hold on to her, DiNozzo!" Gibbs barked. He was cuffing the male suspect he had subdued. The man's wife or whatever she was, had almost attacked Gibbs...Tony had managed to grab her before she brought the vase down on his head.
Holding the woman's arms by her sides, even as she struggled Tony complied. "C'mon, lady, settle down."
She glared at Tony, and then narrowed her eyes as she turned her gaze on Jethro. "Bastardo!" she screamed at him. "Da oggi, quando la luna e' piena, ti transformerai nella bestria maligna che tu sei!" she finished, before spitting in Gibbs' direction. Then she looked slyly between Tony and Gibbs, and laughed, evilly. " Solo l'abbraccio di un amore vero ti potra' salvare."
Gibbs glared back at her, wondering what on earth she'd just said. Then he felt something like an ice-cold breeze breathe through his body. He shook his head and the next moment he felt fine.
Tony gasped, and muttered under his breath, "Corna e tocca ferro!" He made the sign of the horns, extending his pinkie and index fingers on his right had, without even realising it and without letting go of her.
She laughed. "That peasant magic is no match for mine," she said, calming down.
"Whatever," said Tony, "You going to behave yourself if I let you go?" he asked as she had stopped struggling.
She nodded, and didn't do anything further to cause the NCIS agents more problems.
On the way back to the office, Gibbs was driving at his usual breakneck pace. He glanced at Tony. "Did you understand what she said, Tony, after she called me a bastard? That much I got."
Tony shifted in his seat. "Yeah, she pretty much put a curse on you, Boss. Basically, what she said was: 'From this day forward, when the moon is full, you will turn into the evil beast you really are. Only the embrace of your true love can save you!'" Tony explained.
"What the hell does that mean?"
Tony shrugged. "I have no idea. I'm not up on the latest in curse translations," he said.
Gibbs was silent for a moment. "What did you say to her?"
"It doesn't really translate into English. It's just something my Nonna says to ward off evil and bad luck. Sort of like when people say 'Bless you' after you sneeze. I just said it out of habit, I guess," Tony explained.
"Think it'll work?" Gibbs asked sarcastically.
Tony rolled his eyes and sighed. "Probably not. Now, if my Nonna had said it...it might have," he said, grinning at Gibbs.
Gibbs chuckled but he didn't mention the cold feeling he'd experienced after the woman had cursed him. It was nothing. Nothing at all.
24 December 2005
One day before the full moon
Tony hung up the phone thoughtfully. Gibbs had just called in sick for the third day in a row. For someone who never got the flu or a cold, he sure as hell sounded awful.
"What's wrong, Tony?" Ziva said, peeking over the edge of his cubicle wall.
"Ziva! I told you to stop doing that!"
She laughed and shrugged, "I guess I keep forgetting."
"That was Gibbs, he's out sick again."
"So, the man's sick. Happens to everyone once in a blue cheese," Ziva said.
"Blue moon. Once in a blue moon," Tony corrected her. "You don't understand..."
"Gibbs is _never_ sick," Tim finished for him. "What are you going to do, Tony?"
Tony didn't speak for a few moments. Then he smiled. "I'm going down to talk to Ducky."
"Don't worry, Tony. Despite what he says, Gibbs has had a few illnesses in his life, plus recovery time from various wounds. I'm sure he's fine," Ducky said, patting Tony on the shoulder trying to placate him.
Tony frowned. "I don't know, Ducky, he just didn't sound right," he paused for a moment. "Maybe I'm overreacting because it hasn't been that long since we lost Cait...."
Ducky smiled. "Don't apologise for being concerned about Jethro. I'll give him a call and if I don't like how he sounds, I'll go and visit him."
Tony snorted. "Yeah, at least you have half a chance of coming out in one piece. He'd chew me up and spit me out," Tony said. "Especially since he told me NOT to come over." He laughed. "And thanks, for agreeing to check up on him."
"Not a problem, my boy. I'll let you know after I've spoken with him."
"Thanks, Ducky," Tony said. He then left and headed back up to the office.
By the time 4:30 arrived, Tony had never been so glad to see the end of a workday. There had been no new case, which, reflecting on it, Tony realised could be considered good, although not for him. For him, it meant doing paperwork and other not-so-exciting work. Hell, he'd even had to do some of Gibbs' month end paper work. *That's what happens when you're Senior Field Agent* Tony thought.
Ziva and McGee had both left for the day around four. Tony had let them go a little early because he was in charge and because it was Christmas Eve. Shutting down his computer, Tony grabbed his kit and headed for the elevator.
Tony sighed. He really hated the holidays. Thanksgiving, Christmas, anything where one was expected to go home. He now only went home on Christmas day and stayed long enough to eat Christmas dinner. It never failed that his father would start ragging on him for his career choice and Tony would argue back. And things would go downhill from there, quickly.
He'd already decided that he wasn't going home for Christmas this year, having told his father he was on call for the day. It wasn't an out-and-out lie, Tony was always on call, except for his vacation time. Grabbing his gear and shoving the thoughts of the holiday out of his head, Tony headed to his car.
On his way down to his car, he found his thoughts turning to Gibbs again. Ducky had called Tony right before lunch, letting him know that he'd spoken to Gibbs. While Ducky said Gibbs was, indeed, ill, Ducky wasn't overly concerned. Tony had tried to put it out of his mind but something was nagging at him, even now. He just knew something wasn't right.
Stowing his stuff in the trunk of his car, Tony decided that he would go over and check on Gibbs, despite the man's warning about not wanting to be "mother-henned to death". Screw it, if Gibbs could follow his famous "gut" then Tony could follow his own instincts.
By the time he got the car on the road, it was dark, made darker by the clouds that were starting to fill the sky, partially masking the full moon that was rising on the horizon. He really hoped they wouldn't get snow for another few days...or weeks. Briefly, he considered stopping for pizza but if Gibbs were sick, he probably wouldn't want to eat.
Making his way quickly to Gibbs' place, Tony tried to quell his rising unrest. He knew something was seriously wrong, he felt it deep inside. Tony only hoped he'd be in time to help.
When he arrived, Tony was relieved to see Gibbs' car in the driveway. Quickly grabbing his gear from the trunk, Tony made his way into the unlocked house. The only light that seemed to be on was the one in the basement. Standing still, Tony listened and he could hear some sort of noise coming from the basement. Slowly, he made his way downstairs, his gun drawn, just in case.
When he got to the landing he put his gun out in front of him, but couldn't speak. He was looking at someone that sort of resembled Gibbs, but almost wasn't him. Sitting on the floor by the boat, Gibbs looked up at him and snarled. *Blue eyes and a snarl...must be Gibbs,* Tony thought frenetically. He put his gun away and stared at Gibbs as he finished walking down the stairs.
The other man was wearing only jeans and his whole body, or at least what Tony could see of it, was covered in silver hair. It looked like Gibbs had grown a body beard. His body seemed altered too: more muscular, eyes almost glowing, his nose was a little longer, and even his ears seemed different.
Gibbs stood up and when he spoke his voice was gravely, it was like he was trying not to growl. "DiNozzo, what the hell are you doing here?"
"God, Boss, what the hell? How long has this been happening?"
Knowing that Tony wouldn't back down or leave, that the younger man could be as stubborn as Gibbs when he wanted to be, Gibbs answered him. "It started 3 days ago. I have no idea what's happening to me!" He sounded angry but Tony could see fear in the blue eyes.
"We'll figure out what's wrong. I wonder if Ducky might..."
"No! I don't want anyone else to know about this. I just want it fixed!"
"Okay, okay, calm down," Tony said. He turned to walk over to the workbench. As he did, the full moon caught his eye. "Oh, my God!"
"What?" Gibbs sounded faintly alarmed.
"The full moon! Your excessive body hair, the growling. You remember that woman that cursed you? I think she turned you into a werewolf, Boss," Tony said. "Man, this feels like an episode of the X-Files or something."
"A werewolf? DiNozzo, you're fucking nuts! Werewolves don't exist," Jethro said. He stalked over and sat down on the floor in one of the corners. DiNozzo was crazy, he couldn't be...he remembered the cold chill he'd felt when that woman had 'cursed' him. No, this was real life and werewolves. Were. Not. Real.
"Have you looked at yourself?" Tony said quietly.
"Jesus," Gibbs replied. "Tony..."
Tony found a small mirror on the bench and held it up so Gibbs could see. "Look at yourself: your ears are getting pointy, your body's more muscular, you're growling. I don't think this is the sudden onset of some rare tropical disease. You're turning into a werewolf!"
Gibbs looked at Tony and there was fear in his blue eyes. "If you're right, what am I going to do?"
Tony snapped his fingers. "I know who to call!"
"Oh, no, no. Better than Ducky, especially for this sort of situation."
"Who? Ghostbusters?" Gibbs asked, sarcasm covering his fear.
"My Nonna, she's from the Old Country and knows all about curses and stuff," Tony explained. Definitely X-Files, Tony thought. Maybe even The Outer Limits. Tony pulled out his cell phone and dialled a number. He smiled briefly when his Nonna answered the phone. "Hey, Nonna, how're you?" he said.
"Antonio! I'm fine. It is good to hear from you, how are you?" she replied.
"I've been better. Look, what do you know about someone being cursed and turned into a werewolf?" he asked.
She made a surprised sound. "I thought you didn't believe in those 'superstitions', Antonio?"
"They say seeing is believing," he replied, glancing at Gibbs who was still on his haunches in the corner of the room, growling now and again.
"Tell me what happened."
Tony related the incident at the arrest they'd made earlier in the month. "What do you think, Nonna?" he asked once he'd finished telling her what had happened.
"It doesn't sound good. Does your Gibbs have a true love?"
There was silence for a moment. "Um, I don't think so. And I really don't think I can find out who it is...."
"Hmm. Does Gibbs have silver hair and blue eyes?"
Confused at the change in direction of the conversation, Tony replied, "Uh, yeah, he does, why?"
"Well, then, you do know who his true love is."
Tony ran a hand over his face, totally frustrated at the weird turn this conversation was taking. "Nonna, what in the he--, um, heck are you talking about and what does it have to do with Gibbs?"
"My dreams are never wrong, Antonio, you know that. I dreamt of you and Gibbs last week. I didn't learn his name in the dream, but you two were obviously together. You love him very much, don't you" she explained.
"Nonna, I...Gibbs...we aren't!" Tony exclaimed. He paused for a moment. "Yeah, I do, but I don't think..."
"Don't worry," she said with the authority of an older woman. "He loves you."
"I can't just...he'll freak out, I'll freak out!"
"Tsk, tsk, you know to do the right thing. And you must do so before the moon rises all the way or your Gibbs will be a werewolf forever. Now, be a good boy and take your Nonna's advice," she said, chuckling.
Tony couldn't believe he was having this particular conversation with his grandmother. "So, all I have to do is kiss him?"
"Yes, it must be a real kiss, one that you mean. You don't want him cursed forever, do you?"
Closing his eyes, Tony sighed. "No, no I don't. Thanks, Nonna, I love you," he said.
"I love you too, Antonio. Buon Natale," she said.
"Buon Natale," he replied and shut the phone off. So, to save Gibbs he had to kiss him. Not that he really minded doing so, it's just he wasn't sure how Gibbs would react. Then again, his Nonna pretty much batted a thousand when it came to her dreams. He might not believe with or agree with everything she said or believed in, but he did respect her...she'd been right too many other times with her dreams.
Slowly, Tony walked over to Gibbs, who stood up, leaning against the wall, waiting. He could see the fear in the older man's eyes.
"What did...your...grandmother say," Gibbs was finding it hard to keep his thoughts focussed. Tony's scent was driving him to distraction, on top of this whole werewolf thing.
Tony smirked brightly. "She said you had to be kissed by your true love. And that would be me," he said the last part quickly and took advantage of Gibbs' surprise. Pulling the older man close, Tony ignored the extra facial and body hair and kissed him.
Gibbs recovered quickly and instead of pushing Tony away, he returned the kiss, opening his mouth, sliding his tongue out to explore Tony. Tony moaned, wrapping his arms around Gibbs' waist, bringing their bodies together.
While their embrace continued, a bright white light was swirling around their feet and slowly grew until it was over their heads. It was the feel of the breeze created by the vortex of light that Tony and Gibbs noticed. They opened their eyes, astonishment filling both their faces.
Tony looked at Gibbs, seeing all his wolfish features slowly receding and disappearing. "It's working!"
Gibbs closed his eyes, his head tilting back as he felt a searing heat slice momentarily through his body. As suddenly as the light had appeared it vanished. "Tony," he managed to whisper before collapsing into his arms.
He caught Gibbs, lowering him to the floor, grabbing some rags to put under his head. "Gibbs...Jethro, can you hear me, are you ok?" Tony asked, tapping his hand gently on Jethro's face.
Eyes fluttering open, Jethro smiled up at Tony. "Yeah, I'm fine," he said softly, raising a hand to cup Tony's face. "True love, huh?"
Tony grinned at him. "Yeah, true love."