Ashleigh Anpilova


There are many things in which Ducky believes.

An established relationship story.

Written: November 2009. Word count: 1,000.



I believe you don't know what you've got until you say goodbye.


I had always believed I knew how fortunate I was to have Jethro as friend and lover. However, on the day he walked away from NCIS, the children, and me, and went to Mexico, I knew I had been wrong.

He left a huge gap in my life; one that for quite some time I did not know how to begin to fill. Too much of my waking life hitherto had revolved around Jethro, and with him gone, my world was completely unbalanced.


Oh, I kept going. I cared for Mother, I did my job, I played bridge and golf, I read, I listened to music, I talked to the children, but it wasn't me doing those things. It was as if I'd been replaced by something that could not truly feel or be touched by others.


It was only when Jethro was no longer around I truly realized how important he was to me. That understanding, that realization scared me. Surely it couldn't be right to love another person quite that much?


And to this day, I know that is the real reason I was so cold, so distant, so cutting, so . . . much of an ass when Jethro first returned. I didn't want to be the person who couldn't function without his lover around. I didn't want to be the person who needed someone else so much, he felt unreal, incomplete without the other person.


But then I realized life was too short for such fears. Jethro had returned; he was back. I had to believe he was back to stay, and that he would once again be mine.


The evening after we made up in the middle of the squad room, I'll remember for the rest of my life. Never has Jethro showered so much love, affection and attention on me as he did once we'd returned to my home. The next day, my skin still tingled from where his hands and mouth had been.


I believe the sun should never set upon an argument.


This is something my grandmamma always told me. As a young boy I was somewhat dismissive of her words. Often I had heard Mother and Father argue, and it would inevitably end with Father sleeping in the spare room. Breakfast the following morning, would not be a comfortable meal, but when Father returned from work in the evening, things were once again fine.


However, when I was seven, I understood the words. A young friend and I had argued over a toy car and we had parted without speaking to one another, without making up. That night his family home caught fire and . . . I never saw him again. I never got to speak to him again. I never got to make things right. Grandmamma comforted me; told me it wasn't my fault; dried my tears, kissed me and just held me.


From that day I have never let the sun set upon an argument. Thus, when my beloved and I had one of our rare quarrels and he slammed out of my home, despite the brutality of the weather, despite having to change a tire due to a puncture, I set out for his home to make things right.


It was only when I heard the squeal of tires and glanced in my rear-view window to see a car that had passed me at high speed going in the opposite direction turning around in the road, that I realized the car that had passed me, had been my Jethro.


The rain poured down, the wind cut through us, but we stood, getting soaked, getting chilled, by the side of the road just holding one another, as he muttered, over and over again, the word he so rarely speaks. Finally, we returned to Reston House and continued to make things right again.


I believe we place our happiness in other people's hands.


It may make me sound like a character in a trashy romance novel, but my happiness is very much in the hands of one person: Leroy Jethro Gibbs; the man who is my closest, dearest, most intimate friend, and my lover.


When we are together, when I know I am his only lover, I am happy. In fact I am not just happy, I am content. He only has to smile at me, to look at me, to say my name in his own particular way and I am completely happy. Foolish and sickening as it may sound, he can brighten my entire day merely by saying 'hello' to me.


Six months ago, he made me happier than I ever believed I would be. He did it by leaving his home and moving in with me. With that simple gesture he gave himself entirely to me and me alone, and took my wellbeing firmly into his hands.


I sometimes think I do not deserve to be this happy, but I am. And it's all down to Jethro; the man I love.


I believe in love surviving death into eternity.


I know the day will come when death will part Jethro and me - at least physically. However, it will not, it cannot, part our love.


When Jethro and I took our wedding vows, we both promised to love one other beyond death, into eternity.


Death will not part us; death will rejoin us. Whichever of us goes first and I pray that it is I, I cannot be without Jethro again, I know he will wait for the other to join him, and we will, once again, be together.


The kind of love Jethro and I have for one another is not merely for the time on this earth. Because the kind of love we have for one another does not come to everyone.


I shall take a liberty and misquote Keats: 'I love Jethro, Jethro loves me - that is all I know on earth, and all I need to know.'



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