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Title: One Step At A Time
Series: 1) The Ring, 2) Respite, 3) Death Match, 4) Whore, 5) Broken, 6) Vows, 7) Please, 8) Liberation, 9) Real, 10) Visitors, 11) Changes, 12) Alone, 13) SeparatedSeparated
Warnings: DARKFIC!!! rape, violence, brutality
Summary: Tony vanishes and Gibbs tracks him into the violence of a human slavery ring. Unexpected results from the airport encounter.
Jethro woke up in a comfortable bed, fuzzy on how he'd gotten there in the first place. He tensed, but heard Tony's familiar almost-snore and relaxed. Rubbing his eyes, Jethro opened them on a swanky hotel room and blinked in surprise.
Last he remembered...he chuckled as the memories returned, along with his threats to the airport lawyer about a serious lawsuit. She'd obviously paid for somewhere very expensive in the hopes of helping him reconsider. Turning over slowly, he spooned up against Tony and held him tight, burying his face against the other's throat.
Tony sighed and yawned, turning and curling up in his arms, their legs twining together as his cheek rested on Jethro's shoulder. "Morning."
"Morning," Jethro replied, kissing his throat. "Thanks for getting us here."
Tony kissed his chest and answered, "Feeling better?"
Jethro nodded, hands stroking slowly up and down Tony's back. The sensation of electricity running through him and the resulting pain and migraine had really knocked him for a loop. He still had some aches, but was mostly back to normal. "Almost human. I think a shower would put me the rest of the way there."
"Don't let me stop you. You could use a shower," Tony teased, leaning back to grin at him.
Chuckling, Jethro rolled them so Tony was on top and prompted, "Care to keep me company?"
Eyes twinkling, Tony pretended to think about it before saying, "I think I could manage that."
There was some making out first. Jethro delved into his willing mouth, sliding his tongue along Tony's as they kissed, long and easy. He didn't get offended when Tony didn't get hard or seem to want more, simply responding to the kisses with an uncomplicated happiness. Jethro broke off the kissing and nipped at his lips, suggesting, "Shower?"
Tony nodded and rolled off him, waiting until Jethro was on his feet to take his hand and head for the bathroom. They were in the shower for a good half hour, just cleaning one another, when the phone rang. Jethro grinned and said, "Let it ring."
Which it did, several more times before falling silent. They'd just stepped out of the tub when it started up again. Snorting, Jethro said, "I'll get it. Might be Malone for some reason."
Tony nodded and continued drying off as Jethro returned to the main room and picked up the phone. "Gibbs."
"Keep your fuckin' mouth shut. We can get to him any time we want."
Jethro's fingers tightened on the phone so much that his knuckles protested as the dial tone reverberated through the line. He very carefully hung up the phone and breathed deeply, knowing he only had so much time before Tony came out to see who it was. By the time Tony did come out, Jethro was calm and dressed and waiting to get on the road.
Tony sent a surprised look his way and asked, "We on a timetable?"
"No, I just want to get going," Jethro replied truthfully. He had to find a way to occupy Tony so that he could call Malone and see if there was a way to trace who called. Better yet, he could ask Abby to do it. She wouldn't care about legalities if it was to protect Tony.
Tony solved the problem by saying, "I just need to shave and brush my teeth. Be ready in a few minutes."
Nodding, Jethro told him, "I think I can wait that long."
Rolling his eyes, Tony returned to the bathroom.
Jethro immediately picked up the phone and called Abby at work.
"Abby Sciuto speaking," she replied on the third ring.
"Abby, it's me."
"Gibbs! Oh my God! You and Tony are all over the news and youtube!" Abby exclaimed. "Wow, was trying to fly the wrong thing to do with Tony still so freakable. But you were..."
Jethro interrupted, "Abby, I need you to find out who just called this line. Do it fast, but be very, very careful about not leaving a trail."
She paused and then asked, "It's them, isn't it? They just threatened you?"
"Yeah, Abs. Threatened Tony," he confirmed. "Do it and call me back on my cell."
"You got it, Gibbs."
Jethro hung up about three seconds before Tony came out, toothbrush in his hand, looking puzzled. He asked with his mouth full, "Someone talking?"
Jethro grinned and answered, "Just me to myself."
"And the boat's not even here," Tony mourned, grinning around the toothbrush.
Shooing him back into the bathroom, Jethro told him, "Five minutes, DiNozzo."
Tony waved him off, but returned to getting ready.
At least he knew how they'd found them, if they were on the news. Then he wondered, But what the hell is youtube?
They didn't have any bags, so when Tony came out, it was a matter of just leaving a tip for the maids. Jethro doubted that their bill would cover that part. His arm went around Tony's waist as they left the room, keeping him close, just in case. He didn't honestly think that they would do anything until it came close to the trial, but his body was hyper-alert without his say-so.
"Damn Boss, you're tense," Tony observed, rubbing a hand over his back as they waited for the elevator. "You sure you're okay to drive?"
Jethro nodded as the doors opened and he guided Tony into the elevator and asked, "What the hell is youtube?"
Tony snorted on a laugh, a noise that made Jethro grin, and told him, "It's an internet site where amateur videos get uploaded and watched. Why?"
Jethro sighed and explained, "We're all over it and the news. Someone must have had a camera phone at the airport."
Tony froze, stiffening and demanding, "It's on youtube?! Jethro, I can't go out there! Not now!"
The elevator doors opened just then and it took some actual tugging to get Tony into the lobby so they could sign out.
The concierge said, "I'll have your car brought around front, Mr. Gibbs."
"Thanks," Jethro answered shortly.
He didn't have a choice, after all. He had no idea what kind of car they had, he'd been so out of it the previous day. Fortunately, there were only a few stares and murmurs as they crossed the lobby, Tony clinging to him with his face a deep shade of red. The car showed up about five minutes later and he held the door for Tony before closing it and walking around to the driver's side.
The valet held up his hands when Jethro tried to tip him and said, "Thanks, man, but your money's no good here. And if you ever get down to Jake's downtown, it's no good there, either. Come on over any time, okay?"
Bemused, Jethro replied, "Thanks," and got in the driver's side, suspecting that Jake's would turn out to be a gay club of some kind.
They were on the highway in ten minutes flat and Jethro settled into the drive, which would be another three hours or so, depending on traffic. Tony took hold of his hand about two seconds after Jethro put the car in gear. He didn't relinquish it for a good half-hour when the drive lulled him into a doze.
Jethro extricated his hand when his cell phone rang, hoping it would be Abby.
"Yo Gibbs, it's me," she announced.
Smiling, Jethro teased, "I figured, Abs, since no one else has this number yet."
"Oh. Right, well. I found the location of the phone that called the hotel line, but you're not going to like it."
"I didn't think I would. Spill it, Abs."
"DC Mayor's office."
Jethro paused at that. "You're sure?"
Jethro took a breath and said, "Thanks, Abs. I'll call you when Tony's up to visitors."
"Call me when you get home," she insisted. "I want to know you're okay. And call Ducky!"
Making a face, Jethro agreed, "I will. Bye, Abby."
"Bye Gibbs. Be careful."
He hung up and put the phone on the seat, glancing over to find that Tony was thankfully still asleep. Reaching out, he took Tony's hand and laced their fingers together, needing the connection. As he drove, all Jethro could think about was who could still be out there and loose, beyond the law at this point.
And how to kill them.
***Next story in series: Home.