Need and Novelty

by Nix
(crimsonquills AT gmail DOT com)

Author's Notes: This series is set in the same universe as the Horses of Different Colors series by James Walkswithwind and Wolfling, which you can find at -- I have, however, written it with the intention that it will still make complete sense to people who haven't read that series.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS: Thanks to James Walkswithwind and Wolfling, who let me play in their world. Thanks also to Moonbeam for betaing for me. And I have to thank all the readers for their patience again. Last time I had a five month gap I said "never again!" and yet here we are. But at least the series isn't dead. :-)

Tony shifted impatiently in the passenger seat of the car. Gibbs had been at his most close-mouthed this evening, refusing to give Tony a single hint about where they were going, aside from his brisk instructions to dress "nice but casual" and to wear comfortable shoes. Tony could think of several activities that would require those two things, but none of them seemed Gibbs-compatible.

"Gibbs--" Tony tried once more.

"We're almost there," Gibbs said, cutting him off. He shot Tony a sidelong glance and smiled, a tiny quirk of the lips, but a smile nonetheless. "I promise, the anticipation will be worth it."

Tony glared at him. "You're just saying that to build me up more."

Gibbs just chuckled.

Half an hour later Gibbs pulled into the parking lot of a perfectly ordinary restaurant. Tony climbed out of the car and looked the place over skeptically. "We drove three hours out of our way on a Saturday evening to go to dinner? This place had better be spectacular, Gibbs."

Gibbs strode over to the entrance, leaving Tony to follow, and held the door open for him. "Never been here before," he said calmly.

Tony turned to stare at Gibbs as he stepped into the restaurant. "Never? Gibbs--"

"Tony." Gibbs stopped Tony a few steps into the restaurant and, putting his hands on the sides of Tony's head, physically turned him back towards the restaurant's interior.

After a moment, Tony actually registered what he was looking at and his mouth rounded into a silent "O" of surprise.

Nestled amongst the dining tables was a small dance floor, and on the dance floor most of the handful of couples were same sex. A relatively slow song was playing and nearly all of the pairs were pressed close together, arms wrapped around each other, though a few of them were executing actual dance moves.

Well, this explains why we drove three hours out of our way, Tony thought, stunned.

"Sirs?" Tony blinked and turned to find the host watching them.

Gibbs stepped from behind Tony to stand next to him and placed a hand on the small of Tony's back. "We have a reservation under 'Black'." Tony blinked, but managed to suppress any other hint of surprise. Of course Gibbs wouldn't have used his real name.

The host consulted a list and nodded. "Of course. Please follow me." He gathered up two menus and turned to lead them through the tables.

Tony was silent, drinking in the ambience of the place, until they reached their table. It was right next to the dance floor and Tony knew, somehow, that Gibbs had asked for that specifically. Which meant he planned on dancing. Tony turned that thought over in his head, trying to get used to it.

"Tony?" Gibbs asked, frowning, as he slid into his seat. "You okay?"

"Yeah," Tony said quickly as he sat. "I'm good. Just surprised. I, ah," Tony glanced around and shrugged. "I didn't think this would be your kind of thing."

"'This' what?" Gibbs asked. "Dinner and dancing doesn't seem my style?"

"We've never done anything like this before," Tony said. He dropped his eyes to his menu.

Warm fingers brushed over Tony's jaw and cupped his cheek, prompting him to raise his eyes to meet Gibbs's. "We've never done this before because we need to be discreet," Gibbs said firmly. "Not because I haven't wanted to, or because you aren't worth it, or whatever damn thing is going through your mind right now." He let his hand drop. "Got it?"

Tony grinned. "Got it, boss," he said happily. He paused, suddenly confused. "So, uh, given our need to be discreet, why now?" Especially given that they'd been together for more than a year. This was the sort of thing you generally did for an anniversary or something. Theirs had been more than two months before.

Gibbs was studying his menu. "It seemed like you needed it," he said calmly.

Tony ducked his head and focused his attention on his own menu as he tried, mostly unsuccessfully, to suppress the little boy grin that drew from him. Gibbs takes care of his own. "So," Tony said casually, eyes still on his menu, "I'm thinking if we want to be light on our feet, we better plan on dancing before dinner. But if I don't eat something, I'm going to fall over."

"That's what appetizers are for, Tony," Gibbs said dryly.

Tony looked up and met Gibbs's amused gaze. The grin broke free. "Yeah, okay, but that raises the eternal question: soup or salad?"

Gibbs had the soup. Tony had the salad. Caesar, which gave him a mild panic attack after he ordered when he realized he'd have garlic breath while they were dancing. The proprietors of the restaurant had apparently thought of that, though, because when the salad arrived there were a few sprigs of mint arranged discreetly and aesthetically on the edge of the salad plate. Tony mentally upgraded his evaluation of the place a couple of notches.

As he chewed on the mint, Tony wondered how this was going to work. Hell, he didn't even know if Gibbs knew how to dance, although it seemed a pretty safe bet that he did if he'd brought them to this place. Still, how would they get things started? This situation was a little different from what Tony was used to.

Gibbs pushed his chair back, stood, and came around to Tony's side of the table. He held out his hand and tilted his head towards the dance floor.

Well, that answers that question, Tony thought, a little bemused. He stood and took Gibbs's hand and they moved into a clear space on the dance floor just as the current song wound down. Gibbs pulled Tony into a loose embrace, their right hands clasped and extended a little, his other hand on the small of Tony's back.

"I thought the taller man was supposed to lead," Tony teased as Gibbs started them moving around the dance floor to the new song. "I've got two inches on you."

Gibbs leaned a little closer, his lips brushing against Tony's ear. "Only in this shape," he murmured.

Tony shivered a little and delayed his own steps in the dance a little so that Gibbs pressed more firmly against him, forcing him to move. "But you can't dance in your other shape."

"There are a lot of things I can do in this shape that I can't do in the other," Gibbs said, his body moving briefly, suggestively, against Tony's. All a part of the dance, of course. "But it's always a part of me."

The look in Gibbs's eyes made Tony's mouth go dry. Possessive, protective, heated... Tony swallowed, despite the dryness. "You're enjoying holding on to me in public, aren't you?"

Gibbs's eyes glittered. "You have no idea."

Tony laughed, a little shakily. "You had to pick a place three hours from home?"

Gibbs's smile was wicked. "It's Saturday, Tony. I have a reservation at the Hilton three blocks from here."

"Oh," Tony said weakly. He licked his lips to moisten them. "Can we--"

"We're going to dance," Gibbs said firmly. "Then we're going to have dinner. Then we'll go to the hotel." Gibbs smirked at him. "Learn to enjoy the anticipation, Tony."

Tony thought of the hours between now and that hotel room with dismay. Hours in a place where you don't have to hide how you feel, Tony reminded himself. Enjoy the anticipation, huh, Gibbs? Two can play that game. Tony grinned and let his hand, resting on Gibbs's back, slide down until the tips of his fingers brushed across Gibbs's ass.

"Tony," Gibbs said warningly.

"Hey, I'm learning to enjoy the anticipation here," Tony said, the innocent expression spoiled by his grin.

"Shameless," Gibbs growled, but his eyes were twinkling.

"Completely," Tony replied. He settled himself firmly against Gibbs as the centaur moved them around the dance floor, his attention focused on the warm pressure of Gibbs's body against his and the eyes that held his own rather than on the actual dancing. His body followed Gibbs's cues automatically and it was Gibbs's job to lead, to choose the steps they would take. Tony would take care of...other things.

With those other things in mind, Tony turned the hand clasped in Gibbs's hand and slowly caressed Gibbs's hand and fingers. Gibbs's eyes darkened, but he made no move to stop the small, light touches.

"You know why I like dancing?" Tony asked.

"The excuse to grind against your partner?" Gibbs replied dryly.

Tony grinned briefly. "Well, yeah. But not all songs are bumping and grinding songs."

Gibbs smirked a little. "Which is something I may have considered when choosing this place," he said. The song they were dancing to was upbeat, but certainly not club material. If he was honest, Tony preferred this to the bump and grind. Club dancing was great foreplay if you were looking for a one night stand, but it wasn't much fun in and of itself. "So why you do you like dancing?" Gibbs asked, interrupting his thoughts.

"Because you can learn so much about your partner from it," Tony said, warm but serious. "Do they trust you enough to relax and follow your lead? Do they like dancing close, or are they more comfortable with a little distance? Do they like to get fancy, or would they rather keep it simple?"

Gibbs's eyes glittered mischievously, but Tony was ready when Gibbs threw him into a tight spin, pulled him close afterward so abruptly that Tony actually bounced off Gibbs...right into a set of tight, fast steps and turns. All completely out of time with the music, but Tony didn't care. He was grinning when they settled back into the slower pace of the music. "Trying to catch me off guard?"

"No," Gibbs said his lips curving just a little. "Just figured you like to get fancy."

Tony laughed, chest tight with giddiness. "You call that fancy?" he challenged, waggling his eyebrows.

"We've never danced before. I had to see if you could keep up," Gibbs shot back.

As if on cue, the music segued into a new song, this one with a much faster, more complex beat. Tony tilted his head to indicate the music. "I can keep up with you if you can keep up with that."

Gibbs broke into a grin. "I think you better hang on a little tighter," he said, and threw them into the music.

By the time they collapsed into their chairs, dress clothes spotted with sweat and both a little out of breath, they'd accidentally run into three other couples, prompting the rest of the patrons to clear the dance floor for their last high-speed, not-quite-on-the-time, dance. Tony tripped over his own feet twice, once so badly that he would have completely fallen over if Gibbs hadn't caught him.

But the missteps and the awkward, improvised dance steps--they'd pretty much just run around holding hands for a while there while Gibbs tried to think of something new--didn't matter. Tony knew he was glowing as he sank back into his chair and gulped down water. Lowering his glass, he caught Gibbs frozen with his own water halfway to his mouth. Gibbs's eyes were dark and hot.

If I look anything like he does, it's no wonder, Tony thought, his blood heating as he took Gibbs in. Skin flushed from activity, hair a little disheveled, clothes slightly awry, he looked like they'd just spent the last half hour making out rather than dancing. Tony swallowed heavily. "You sure you don't want to go to the hotel now?" he asked, drawing a single finger down through the condensation on the side of his water glass.

"Dinner first," Gibbs said firmly, though his voice was a bit lower than usual. "You're going to need the energy."

Tony ordered steak.

"So where'd you learn to dance, anyway?" Tony asked as they cut into their food. "Most men aren't interested in learning to dance with real steps. At least, that's what the women I've danced with always say when they find out I know how."

"I didn't take classes, if that's what you mean," Gibbs said. He paused to chew and swallow a bite of food. "I probably learned pretty much the same way you did; I spent a lot of time with women who like to dance."

Tony chuckled and shook his head. "If you didn't take lessons, you definitely didn't learn the way I did," he disagreed. "My mother made me learn when I turned sixteen. She said boys my age didn't have any class and that I was going to learn some if it killed her." Tony put on a contemplative expression. "Girls do go for the dancing, but the class didn't take." He flashed Gibbs a quick grin.

"Obviously not," Gibbs said dryly, "or we wouldn't be here."

"What, you don't like class?" Tony asked, though he already knew the answer. Maybe, just maybe, Gibbs would say more than just 'no' tonight.

"No," Gibbs said. Tony almost sighed in disappointment, but Gibbs went on. "My second wife was classy," he said. "Wore designer clothes and nothing but, played golf, had perfect table manners, the whole bit." Gibbs snorted. "I don't know what I was thinking, marrying her, except that she was as different as possible from my first wife and independent as hell, so maybe she wouldn't mind me being away from home so much."

"Let me guess," Tony said, grimacing. "She 'didn't mind' a little too much."

Gibbs nodded. "Caught her in bed with a high priced defense attorney she met through one of my cases." Gibbs smiled tightly. "And here I thought the fact that she was willing to marry me meant that she wasn't just slumming."

Tony winced. "That's harsh."

Gibbs shrugged. "It would have self-destructed one way or another," he said.

"I'd say I'm sorry," Tony said, "but I'm really, really not."

Gibbs shot him an amused look. "Only ever thinking of yourself," he chided dryly.

"Oh yeah," Tony said, breaking into a grin. "Completely selfish. Like right now?" Tony shook off one of his shoes and slid his foot forward until he found Gibbs's ankle with his toes. "Right now, all I'm thinking of is showing everyone in this restaurant how crazy you get for me." Slowly, he dragged his foot up the inside of Gibbs's calf. "I could get us thrown out of this place." Tony shook his head mournfully. "No consideration at all for the time and expense you put into setting all this up."

Suddenly, Tony felt a firm, warm touch against his own calf. "You sure I'm the one who's going to go crazy?" Gibbs asked quietly.

Tony met Gibbs's dark gaze and licked his lips quickly. "I don't know," he said. "Depends on when we get thrown out, I bet."

They didn't get thrown out, although Tony suspected the only reason why not was because the other patrons seemed to be enjoying the show. Gibbs played an unexpectedly intense game of footsie. Tony wasn't sure why that surprised him so much, unless it was because on the rare past occasions that Tony had ventured a nudge, Gibbs had never responded.

Apparently he'd only been restrained by previous venues, because here, where no one was going to have a real issue with it, he'd gone so far as to slide his foot all the way into Tony's lap. Tony shifted uncomfortably in the passenger seat of Gibbs's car just thinking about it. Gibbs had rubbed a solid, indelicate stroke over Tony's trapped cock with the arch of his foot while he held Tony's gaze captive, a challenging smirk on his lips.

Tony couldn't top that. He'd just bit back a whimper, eyelids drooping halfway shut, and pushed into the touch a fraction.

The check was paid and the two of them were out the door less than five minutes later.

As they pulled into the parking lot, Tony gave silent thanks that Gibbs had chosen a hotel so close to the restaurant. If they'd wanted to, they could have walked the distance.

They were a little too impatient for that.

Tony forced himself to be calm while Gibbs checked them into their room. This wasn't some No-Tell Motel, where the clerk expected his guests to rush to their rooms. This was the Hilton. Tony did appreciate the thought--or at least, he would later--but right now he just wanted privacy and a mattress.

Finally they were done checking in, the clerk had shown Gibbs the path to their room on a tiny map, and they could get moving again. Tony ached to rush ahead, but he didn't know which way to go, so he just stuck close by Gibbs's side, watching the floor numbers impatiently in the elevator and glancing at Gibbs hopefully every time they slowed in the hallway, hoping they'd reached their room.

At last Gibbs stopped and slid the card key into a door. The green light came on and then Gibbs was jerking him into the room and slamming him up against the door, knocking it closed with a loud thump and startling the breath from Tony's lungs. He didn't even manage to suck in any air before Gibbs's mouth was on his, his body pressing Tony hard against the door, hands tight on Tony's wrists. Tony didn't even have the breath to moan; he could only drown in the kiss and wonder if he was going to pass out because he couldn't scrape up the willpower to break for air.

Gibbs pulled back from his mouth an instant before panic would have set in, letting Tony drag in a desperate breath. Pulling Tony further into the room, Gibbs pushed him towards the bed. He pinned Tony with a dark look before dropping the bag slung over his shoulder to the floor and lowering himself into a crouch to open it.

Tony lay still on the bed, not even trying to undress himself, just watching Gibbs, hoping. From within the bag Gibbs withdrew the leather cuffs and Tony moaned softly in anticipation. Gibbs looked up at the sound, pausing for a moment with cuffs and ties in his hands before rising to his full height and stalking towards the bed.

Tony drank in the waves of power that seemed to radiate off of Gibbs as he approached. It had been tantalizingly close to the surface all night, Gibbs's controls loosened by the tolerant nature of the night's setting. Now Gibbs unleashed that strength as much as he could without transforming. Tony could feel it almost like a physical touch.

Gibbs paused at the end of the bed, eyes fixed on Tony, and stripped out of his clothes with deliberate, efficient motions. Tony licked his lips as he watched, his own clothes grown uncomfortable with his growing excitement. Naked, Gibbs climbed onto the bed and crawled forward to kneel aside Tony, divesting him of shirt and pants and all the rest just as intently.

The utter lack of any teasing, the sheer focusing on getting down to skin, made Tony shiver all by itself. He found himself looking up at Gibbs, waiting. Rather than leaning down, Gibbs pulled Tony up, taking his mouth with a slow kiss, the intensity of it growing until Tony felt himself trembling, eyes closed, his whole body focused on the taste of Gibbs.

Eventually Gibbs pulled back, drawing Tony into a sitting position. Setting one of the cuffs and the ties aside, Gibbs took one of Tony's wrists in his hands and wrapped the cuff around it, his eyes holding Tony's as he buckled it firmly by touch alone.

Licking his lips, Tony struggled to breathe normally. The cuff seemed unnaturally heavy on his wrist and when Gibbs released his hand he simply let it drop to his side. By the time Gibbs finished securing the second cuff Tony had lost the battle to breathe normally and instead found himself panting a little, his heart racing in his chest.

Gibbs let go of his wrist and tilted Tony's face up with a single finger under his chin, just looking at him for a long moment. "Mine," he said simply.

It was a statement, a simple truth, not a demand or a question, but Tony answered it anyway. "Yes."

Gibbs kissed him briefly before pushing Tony down to lie flat on the bed and using the ties to bind his hands to the headboard. "Just relax and let go," he murmured as he checked the last knot.

Tony couldn't think of what to say, nor did he really want to speak, so he just nodded and pulled firmly on his bindings, shivering in pleasure, eyes closing, as he felt how securely he was held. The warm, firm weight of Gibbs's hand on his chest prompted Tony to open his eyes. He was just in time to see Gibbs bend his head to kiss one of Tony's nipples, a light, feathery touch that made Tony catch his breath.

They almost always started slow when they used the cuffs, Gibbs taking the time to explore in a way that Tony wasn't often patient enough to allow, but it also usually quickly grew hard and intense. Tonight Gibbs seemed determined to hold to the deliberate pace. He trailed wet kisses down Tony's body, his hands sliding down Tony's flanks as he worked.

Tony felt almost as though he were floating on the caresses. Each touch lifted him up, fueling a quiet, pervasive warmth, rather than an intense, focused heat. Even the hot, wet touch of his mouth to Tony's cock, slow and sweet, didn't concentrate his arousal. It seemed instead to spread through him like liquid, as if the earlier caresses had paved the way.


Slowly, Tony opened his eyes and looked down his body at Gibbs kneeling over him. Their gazes met and held. "Gibbs," Tony breathed at length.

Gibbs lifted Tony's legs to his shoulders and tilted his hips up, his gaze never wavering from Tony's. It didn't even occur to Tony until Gibbs was buried within him that Gibbs hadn't bothered to stretch him. He'd been so relaxed, so suffused with pleasure, that the ache of his body opening and the hot, slick slide of Gibbs within, had been easy.

Tony wanted to close his eyes, to lose himself in the thrust of Gibbs's body into his, but Gibbs was still holding his gaze, hands curled around Tony's legs just above the knees. Tony couldn't look away, Gibbs's gaze as much a command as the words he wasn't speaking.

Bound as he was, Tony had no leverage to push back against Gibbs. All he could do was relax and accept and try to communicate to Gibbs, through their locked eyes, the heat and the ache steadily building beneath his skin.

Gibbs's lips were parted slightly, his breath loud in the silence that enveloped the two of them. His hands squeezed Tony's thighs every time he pushed deep into Tony's body, the touch growing damp with exertion. Gibbs's sweat pumped up his scent until Tony could almost imagine he had the same sense of Gibbs as Gibbs had of him.

Breathing deeply, Tony found himself licking his lips, watching for the darkening of Gibbs's eyes, the moment when everything would kick up a notch. But Gibbs never did pick up the pace or push to break Tony's control. He just kept moving, relentless even when Tony began to twist and squirm helplessly beneath him, almost painfully close to the edge.

The tension within him coiled tighter and tighter building far past the point Tony was used to. He could hear himself whimpering, soft, gasping cries occasionally breaking free as he strained towards completion, pushing for that break, that release.

It took far, far longer than Tony had ever experienced. When he finally reached his peak, it was more like his control crumbled away than like it had snapped. Waves of completion coursed through him over and over again, dragging out the moment and leaving Tony wrecked in their wake. He was only dimly aware of Gibbs's grip tightening on his thighs, his hoarse shout.

Tony was still pulling himself together when gentle tugs at his wrists told him Gibbs was untying him from the headboard. He eased Tony's arms down from over his head, but left the cuffs in place. Prying his eyes open, Tony smiled lazily up at Gibbs, who stretched out next to Tony, propped up on one elbow so that he could look down at him.

"You keep surprising me," Tony said languidly.

"Got to keep you interested somehow," Gibbs said, but Tony could tell by the curve of his lips and the tone of his voice that he was teasing, not seriously concerned.

Tony was too relaxed to tease back. "C'mere," he said instead, reaching out to tug one of Gibbs's arms.

Gibbs raised an eyebrow, but let himself be pulled down and arranged like a body pillow, Tony's head resting contentedly on his chest. After a moment Gibbs started stroking the long line of Tony's back, but Tony was asleep almost before he could enjoy it.