Oh, The Places You'll Go

Not Just Telling Stories

Notes: And the final question to be answered (in fic-lite form, anyway). For subway_silence and etcetera_cat: who said, "I always wonder how the coming-out to the parents/family went, both Tim's and Tony's. I know it's a bit of a vague question, but if you can do something with it..." and "When does Tim take Tony to meet his family?"

Tim’s sister Sarah, has been in on the relationship from way before it was even anything. Tim's also been out with his family as a bisexual man since he was a teenager because a) he'd always found it impossible to keep things from his mom and b) his dad was starting to really pressure him to go into the Navy. Actually, when Tim did come out, his father accused him of lying about it just to get out of going into the services. Tim, for once, stood his ground and was all, what? You think I want out of the Navy so bad the only excuse I can think of is that I like dick as well as boobs? If you want, I can bring my boyfriend home and we can put on a show for you. And then he ran.

When his mom found him (she always knew where to look) and dragged him home, he sat through the apparently endless lecture on respect (both of your parents and of yourself, Timothy) and resigned himself to being grounded for the next month.

Two days later his dad knocked on his bedroom door and asked if it was okay to come in. This was unusual enough that Tim didn't have time to put up his normal barriers and said, "Sure. Sit Down."

And then the world turned upside-down because Tim's dad apologized. He apologized to Tim. He said he'd overreacted and that Tim's life was his own and if he really didn't want to go into the Navy that was just fine, Tim was smart enough to do whatever he put his mind to. He said that he was thrown by the whole bisexual thing, but he trusted Tim to know what he wanted and anyway, it was his problem, not Tim's. He said that he'd had the honour to serve with some very fine men who had been dishonorably discharged because of their, ah, their, um, their proclivities and he didn't agree with it. He said that who you sleep with has no bearing on whether you're a man or not. He said you know your mother loves you, right? And Tim was mostly sure that he meant he did, too. He said and by the way, you're still grounded until the weekend for your smart mouth. And then he got to his feet, patted Tim awkwardly on the shoulder and left. Half an hour later, when Tim still hadn't moved from his state of dazed shock and disbelief, because wow, talk about unprecedented, his mom came in with a glass of milk and a plate of snickerdoodles. "Fair warning," she said, "Sarah made these." And then she threw her arms around Tim and squeezed tight. "Anyone would be lucky to have you," she said. "Anyone."

And that was that.

So when it's clear that the whole him and Tony thing is going somewhere, Tim has no problem asking his mom if he can bring someone for Christmas (Well, he has no problem after it's forcibly pointed out to him by Tony that Tim can't go making decisions about stuff all on his own any more, that's not how relationships work, McAsshole, and why is it Tony has to be the grown up?). It's not the first time, but it hasn't ever been a guy so Tim's a little apprehensive that maybe they'd thought he had been mistaken with the whole bisexual thing, but either his mom's an awesome actress or he's misjudged them.

"Tony," she says. "Don't you work with a Tony?"

"Yes, mom." And I sleep with him, too, Tim doesn't add. "Same guy. No lectures, please."

"I had no intention," she says. "But it will be nice to finally thank him for all he did for Sarah when she had all that trouble."

Trust his mom to be able to turn the mess that had been Sarah into 'all that trouble' and be done with it. Still, the sentiment does something squishy and warm to his insides.

"And I'm sure your father will be delighted to meet him, too. Does he like football?"

"Oh, yes," says Tim.

"Well then, they'll have plenty to discuss, won't they? It's a good thing we replaced the single in the guest room with that double pullout. Now, is there anything he won't eat? And what shall we get him for a gift? And is he allergic to chinchillas? Oh! Are you allergic to chinchillas? Only they were going to be sent to a facility, you know, when Colonel Elverston and his wife died in that terrible wreck and your father couldn't bear the thought so we put in a run and...'

Tim lets his mom ramble on, half an ear on the tale of chinchilla derring-do. He tries to pinpoint if there's a hint of uneasiness in her chatter but if there is it's buried under layers of genuine fascination with all that chinchillas have to offer. That's a worry in itself, thinks Tim, but he's suddenly looking forward to Christmas and showing Tony off to his folks.

Still, his stomach can't help but twist in knots when they arrive. But in five minutes Tony's charmed Tim's mom and is well on his way to ingratiating himself with Tim's dad. This process is consolidated after Tony eagerly agrees to be part of a Christmas morning pick up football game and debates tactics for the best part of an hour. Tim refrains from kissing him in public, he doesn't want to push his luck. Later, he overhears Tony in the kitchen washing dishes with his mom saying, "No, I'm the lucky one, Mrs. McGee, believe me," and his mom's response, "I do believe you, Tony. I think we'll keep you," and he can't stop the grin spreading over his face.

It goes differently with Tony's dad. Senior is actually, for once, as good as his word and Tony's kind of flummoxed that he's getting regular phone calls from him. They're building a relationship slowly, and, okay, it may be based on lies and deceit from Senior's side, but Tony's not exactly being honest, either. He's certainly not getting into it about Tim on the phone.

Occasionally, Senior makes the trip down to DC and acts like he's doing Tony a favour by staying at his place rather than a swanky hotel. Tony really enjoys the whole running around and clearing any signs of his and Tim's life together away. That never goes badly, oh no. Tim never takes issue with being relegated with the dog to his (mostly unused) apartment at all. The first couple of times Senior insists on Abby and Ziva joining them for dinner and doesn't seem to care one way or the other that Tim comes, too. One time, Abby and Ziva already have plans.

"Just you and me then, son," says Senior.

"And McGee," prompts Tony.

"Now why would he want to do that?" asks Senior. "I always thought he came along to keep an eye on Abby."

"Why would you think that?" asks Tony, trying not to grit his teeth.

"They seem very close," says Senior. "And who can blame him. Such b-"


"Beautiful eyes, son. I was going to say beautiful eyes. No wonder McGee's gaga for her."

"They're not sleeping together."

"Are you sure? Because there are ways men and women act around each other only after they've, ah, sealed the deal."

"Are you even real? Sealed the deal? Are we in high school? And, okay, so yes, they dated, but it was over years ago."

"It's never really over, though, is it? No, they're sleeping together."

"They are not!" Tony practically yells. "He's sleeping with me!" And he's so mad he can't even take the time to be horrified at what he's just said.

"Ah," says Senior, rubbing an eyebrow. "Thank you. I wondered how long that was going to take."

Tony does a double-take. "Wait. What? You knew?"

Senior inspects his fingernails. "I do speak to your Uncle Vincenzo, you know. And your cousin Lucy's wife is a delightful and talkative companion."

"Oh," says Tony, chin going up. "Oh. Yeah. Okay. I'm in love with a guy, with Tim. Hit me with your best shot."

Senior studies Tony for a long moment. Tony's fists clench and unclench, but he doesn't look away, doesn't back down. Senior sighs.

"I can't tell you what to do with your life, Anthony," he says. "Look at me. Married so many times I've lost count and still alone at the end of the day. I'm not an authority on happiness."

Tony frowns. "You're okay with it?"

"No," says Senior, "But you are, and you're my only child. That has to count for something. Now either you get me another scotch or we head out to dinner. You should call your- you should call McGee and let him know we're running late."

"Yes, sir," says Tony, and pulls out his phone.

Contact Cat

Or comment at my LJ