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Hero

Page history last edited by PBworks 13 years, 9 months ago

Disclaimer: I don’t own them and no money has or will be made from this.

 

A/N: Part of the Rescue Pup universe, this fic is set outside of the current timeline (about 5 or 6 months in the future) just because it came to me and I thought it would be a lovely christmas present and glimpse at the future for the trio. That said, there’s no saying that Rescue Pup will head *this* way, so don’t think that I’m spoiling it for you. Also, due to my muse abandoning me half way through for 4 weeks, it’s taken longer than expected and so is slightly belated lol. *Throws snow and puts up a tree so you can pretend it’s still Christmas*


 

Hero’s First Christmas

 

Tony woke up, stretched and grinned, it was Christmas morning and for once it felt good. In the past he had even gone so far as to volunteer to be skeleton staff at work, just to ignore the day until it was gone. Not this year. This year, he had Abby and Gibbs, they’d been together for six months now, it had been bumpier than Gibbs’ driving, but they were still together and still going strong. He felt comfortable in his place and he felt like he really belonged there.

 

Things were still hesitant between them all, there had been kisses, caresses and even a couple of fumbled sexual experiences (that didn’t go beyond the use of hands). He felt a bit like a teenager again. Sometimes he would fall asleep with them in their bed, as they sat talking, but he’d not once made a conscious decision to climb into bed with them with the intention of sleeping there the whole night.

 

Today he had a surprise for them. He ran hands through his hair and cleared the sleep from his eyes. When he was sure he was fully awake, he reached for his kneepads and strapped them on. It was the first time he’d put himself into pupzone since he’d been with them, but it was important that he do it; Gibbs or Abs would ask too many questions and it would ruin it. He slid his shorts off and pulled his T-shirt over his head, glad that they kept the house nice and warm. He eased open a drawer in his nightstand and pulled out the collar that was tucked away in there. He smiled, remembering when Gibbs had given it to him.

 

He had been in his pupmode at the time and his squeaky squirrel had just breathed it’s last, it was the end of summer and he knew there probably wouldn’t be many more chances left for him to play in the garden. Bossman had called him in, and he’d stubbornly ignored him in favour of sniffing at the late blooming flowers. The tone had grown irritated and that had made him scared enough to do as he was told; he still wasn’t sure that there wouldn’t be a kick from a heavy boot if he made them angry.

 

When he reached his bed in the Abbygirl-scented room, the irritation fell away from the man and he had bent down to fuss him and ruffle his fur, skritching behind his ears and making his tail wag of its own volition in contentment. This seemed to amuse Bossman and he did it some more before he sat down on the sofa and patted his knee for Hero to come to him. Too happy to even think of disobeying, he padded obediently over, not noticing that his paws were muddy. Bossman had been smiling at him and that made him a little wary, especially when the man produced a box. He’d backed away slightly with a quiet whimper, but the bright eyes didn’t look cruel and he was suddenly being tempted back by a treat.

 

When the box was opened, Hero’s tail had started to wag enthusiastically when he glimpsed its contents.

 

“Yours.” Bossman said simply. Hero understood that word, and he leaned in to sniff at it, then looked back up into smiling eyes.

 

“Sit.”

 

He remembered that word too, Abby-girl had spent hours teaching him what it meant one hot day when the butterflies kept distracting him. She’d given him so many treats to gain his attention and co-operation that his tummy had started to ache and he’d just laid down to sleep it off. Leaving her slightly exasperated, but very amused.

 

He dropped his bottom to the floor and looked up expectantly. He didn’t have to wait long before it was wrapped around his neck. The little tag had glinted in the light on route.

 

“This means your ours now, Hero.” Bossman had told him.

 

Hero had tilted his head, an action that usually made the man chuckle.

 

“Mine.” Bossman clarified.

 

He gave a woof of happiness, knowing that word too, and then the other man did laugh and gather him up for pets and skritches until his tail was wagging so much he thought it might fall off. He licked Bossman’s face and that had made him laugh more.

 

Tony couldn’t keep the smile from his face as he looked at the black leather with little metal studs; his fingertip nudged the tag so he could read it. “Hero” was etched into one side, and on the other was their phone number. He raised it up and fastened it around his own neck. His eyes blinked slowly and he slid down onto the floor, to allow the shift in his mindset.

 

It came incredibly easy this time, he’d already been part way there, in a way. Hero used his paw to hook open the bedroom door from where he’d left it cracked just enough. He padded his way through the hallway over the soft carpets. He heard voices growing louder but couldn’t work out what they were saying. He picked up his pace in excitement and almost bounded into the family room.

 

They were sitting on the sofa looking at the funny looking tree that they’d put lots of stuff on. Underneath were lots of things covered in paper. Tail wagging, he padded past them and headed for the curious pile, intent on investigating. He growled at the thing that hit his head as it was hanging from the tree and snapped at it, before dipping his head to sniff and paw at the paper.

 

“Hero.” The warning tone of Bossman, made him look around, his face a picture of innocence. Bright blue eyes were smiling though, so he knew he wasn’t in trouble. He continued to sniff around from a distance, a familiar scent catching his attention his nose lifted to sniff at a particular dangly. Treat! He could smell them anywhere.

 

“Leave.” The stern tone brooked no disobedience and Hero backed away from the treat, turning to trot over to them.

 

He sat back on his haunches and lifted one of his front paws.

 

Abby-girl chuckled and leaned forward to skritch and ruffle his fur after shaking his paw. “Happy Christmas, pup.”

 

She and Gibbs had been wondering where Tony was, surprised that he wasn’t already up and begging to be allowed to open presents after the way he’d been staring at them under the tree for the last few days. Sometimes it was like he couldn’t seem to believe there were some under there for him and he would check the gift tags again and again as if they were expected to change out of some cruel joke. He’d never once tried to open them or even picked one up to shake.

 

When the pup had come wandering through the room, she’d watched him then looked at her Master in concern. It was Christmas, and Tony had opted to be Hero, more worrying still, he’d done it without talking to either of them first.

 

“Let’s get you some food, pup.” Bossman said as he stood up, knowing that Hero would follow.

 

They left Abby looking at the chocolate dangling from the tree branch. They had been a gift from Ducky, apparently it was an English thing to hang chocolate Christmas decorations on the tree and his friend sent him and his mother some every year. She had made a comment about how cool an idea it was and the next year he turned up for drinks on Christmas eve with a pack of the little foil-wrapped festively-shaped treats. It had become their tradition every year now.

 

When Gibbs returned to the room alone, she smiled up at him. “Do you think we should be worried?”

 

He didn’t answer, sitting down; he turned to look at her, one eyebrow raised in question.

 

“I really wasn’t expecting to see Hero, not today.” She elaborated.

 

“You think he’s avoiding? That there’s something wrong?”

 

“It’s Tony’s first Christmas with us, why wouldn’t he want to be with us?” She pouted.

 

“He is with us.” He reassured her, wrapping an arm around her shoulder and pulling her body against his. “I’m sure he has his reasons.” He kissed her temple.

 

“Sometimes it feels like he still doesn’t trust us.” Abby told him, sadly.

 

He nodded, kissing her neck, “He trusts us a lot more than he did in the beginning and I think we just have to focus on how much of an achievement that is.”

 

Hero came bouncing through, straight up to them. His tail was wagging happily and he was making quiet happy panting sounds as he snuffled at their knees. He shifted from front paw to the other, practically dancing in happy excitement. Without warning, he jumped up onto the sofa with them. Something he’d never done before.

 

Abby-girl looked sad and he wanted to make her happy. The sofa was tricky, so squishy under his paws, he balanced messily as he gave a small “woof” and leaned in to give her puppy kisses. His plan worked and she chuckled and skritched his ears. He could hear Bossman laughing too, so he kissed him next, his tongue licking up his cheek.

 

“Hero!” Abby-girl stated with a hint of sternness, and he tilted his head to look at her. “Down!”

 

His tail wagged again and he licked her cheek. She was still smiling in her eyes, so even though her voice sounded annoyed, he knew she wasn’t. Then, satisfied that he had done his job, he gingerly hopped off the sofa. Tail wagging furiously. He chased it intently for a few moments, revelling in the sounds of their amusement. They were happy with him and the world was good. Until he got dizzy, that was, and had to plonk himself down on his tail to recover. He panted from the exertion.

 

When the ground stopped tilting and wobbling he returned to his investigation of the pile under the tree. Sniffing from a distance so that he wouldn’t get in trouble.

 

Jethro shook his head, a grin on his face bigger than he could remember in a long time. He’d laughed the pup’s antics so much his face and sides hurt.

 

“Ah, you think there’s something under there for you, huh?” He teased as he tapped his girl’s thigh to move her, before getting up and crossing to the tree. He ruffled dark fur and looked through the gifts until he found the one he was looking for.

 

He patted his thigh and Hero remembered that signal, turning to follow the smiling Bossman back to the sofa, once more dancing from foot to foot.

 

“Sit.”

 

His excitement nearly never allowed him to do as he was told, but a stern look dropped him back onto his tail, front paws still itching and twitching. His body on alert; ready for action at any moment.

 

Bossman put the paper covered surprise on the floor.

 

“Go on.”

 

Hero tilted his head to the side “Aroo?”

 

He shook his head and pointed to the package, “Go on.” His voice urged again.

 

He lowered his head to sniff at it tentatively, keeping one eye on Bossman to make sure he wasn’t going to get in trouble. Bright blue eyes were still smiling. So he brought his paw up to it and batted at it. With a soft growl, he used his mouth and paws to rid it of the paper, finding a new squeaky inside. He pounced on it, picking it up in his mouth and chewing mercilessly. Shaking his head and growling as it squeaked and squeaked insanely.

 

The watching two-legs chuckled with amusement at the show as he ran around squeaking. He finally circled on the rug before dropping to the floor and chewing the new squeaky into submission. He would teach it who was boss.

 

“That’s it boy, you enjoy it.” Abby-girl encouraged.

 

He paid a little attention to them as they seemed to give each other some of the packages, tearing off the paper and dropping it to the floor. He growled at the brightly coloured paper and bounced about in it, growling, snapping and chewing playfully. Making them laugh more.

 

Abby-girls had one of the danglies like the Kat had, it was tinkling, brightly coloured and she was enjoying bouncing it up and down. He watched it suspiciously then looked around. He’d never once seen Abby-girl and the Kat at the same time… but he didn’t doubt that she was lurking somewhere, with her batting paws and determined tongue. She could be fun to play with but she always pinned him down and cleaned his ears and that usually made him growly.

 

He could see the attraction in the danglies, but he didn’t know how the Kat didn’t get dizzy as it bounced up & down and skittered & forth. He quickly lost interest and went back to sniffing through the pile of paper on the floor. His nose to the floor still, he sniffed his way over to the brightly draped tree again and the slightly reduced pile of paper wrapped treats. Lost in his exploration his paw went down on something squishy.

 

“HERO!” Came the sharp call from behind him.

 

He jumped back, whimpering as he cowered away. He looked at the two-legs on the couch, they didn’t look angry, but that tone…he knew that one. He kept backing up until he was peeping out from the behind the armchair.

 

Gibbs sighed heavily as he looked at the now scared pup. He hadn’t meant to do that, but he’d been standing on presents and had been completely distracted by them. He went to the tree and picked off one of the foil wrapped treats, carefully unwrapping it as he moved back to the sofa, he held it out. “I’m sorry for shouting,” He said quietly, never quite sure how much of what he said was understood when Tony was in pup-mode.

 

Hero looked at the offered treat, suspicious of the sudden change in tone, his eyes flickered up to the still kind face. For some reason, in times like that, his body seemed to take over, deciding that a treat was always worth any potential risk; no matter how much he wanted to stay and hide, his nose and stomach always carried him towards chocolate. It did the same this time, and before he knew it, he was sniffing gingerly at the hand. When the treat wasn’t pulled away, he gently picked it up with his teeth, chewed it down and then licked the melted remains from the palm. Bossman’s other hand slowly stroked his fur and he started to relax.

 

There were more of the paper wrapped things, it would seem, and lots of laughter as he removed the offending barriers in his own unique way. He had a new round thing to chase, he growled at it first though… in fact he glared at it and growled until he was certain it knew not to break anything. Then he’d nudged it with his nose and off it had gone. He chased and pounced, chased and pounced, his tail wagging and he barked at it when it came too close to the tree. He left it there, not daring to go after it because he didn’t want to get an angry voice again.

 

A big package, that he was told was his, was brought out from behind the couch; he’d not seen it before. When he started to growl and rip the paper, he determinedly revealed a large soft bed… he bounced around on it. Circling, he sat down. Then he got up, circled again and lay down. He noticed Abby-girl holding something else out to him.

 

“Come see.” Her light voice urged, and he couldn’t resist.

 

Inside there was a new bunny, clean and soft, he’d sniffed at it and realised it smelt of Abby-girl. He’d taken it gently in his teeth and carried it to the rug; curling up with it and resting his paw and chin on it.

 

Gibbs and Abby both laughed at the way he’d ignored the new bed in favour of the rug. Wasn’t that just typical, they’d hunted for hours for a bed that would fit a man of Tony’s size, and Hero opted for the rug.

 

“I think I get it.” She said, quietly.

 

“Get what?”

 

“Why we got Hero this morning and not Tony.”

 

He nodded, he’d figured it out a while ago, he’d been wondering how long it would take her to see it and realise she didn’t have to be worried. There was a quiet snoring coming from the exhausted pup.

 

“He was showing us he trusted us.” Abby’s voice was quiet and husky as she curled up under his arm.

 

“You remember his essay?” Gibbs asked.

 

She nodded with a small frown of concentration.

 

“This is the main part of who he is, I think he was showing us who he really is, inside.”

 

“Just a big excited bundle of fun?”

 

“Something like that.” He grinned. “It’s a big step for him. Sure, he’s let Hero out plenty over the last few months, but he’s always held something back, not today… today we’ve had the full force.”

 

“Puppy power.” She chuckled.

 

“Exactly.”

 

“Think we can find a way to let Tony know that he can be like that without having to be in pup-mode?”

 

“I think he probably used to be, so yeah… if we can help him realise that we like him like that and it’s ok to let himself be vulnerable.”

 

“It’s been a lot of fun.” She grinned,

 

Jethro nodded, a firm smile still stuck on his face. “I’ll let him sleep a while and then we’ll wake him up so ‘Tony’ can open the rest of his gifts.”

 

******

 

“Wakey wakey, Tony.” The soft voice urged.

 

Tony shifted, slowly drifting towards wakefulness. He stretched as a hand lightly caressed his bare shoulder. He quickly became aware he wasn’t just being woken, but also brought up out of his pup-zone at the same time. He blinked his eyes open and looked up at a smiling Gibbs. He was laid out on the rug, a new stuffed animal in his hands. There was no blanket this time; usually when he was brought back there was a blanket to cover his blushes. It seemed odd to focus on the lack of it, but he couldn’t help the niggling feeling that there was significance in that. He gave a lazy smile.

 

“Merry Christmas, Tony.” Jethro offered him a hand to help him to his feet.

 

He took it, his eyes glancing around the room; he blushed slightly at his nakedness when he saw that Abby was there.

 

“Merry Christmas.” He leaned in and kissed the older man on the cheek.

 

The hand still had a hold on his and he was drawn to the sofa. He expected to be pulled down onto it, but as Gibbs sat, he left him standing. There was a box shaped present on the arm and he watched as his boss picked it up. He turned it over in his hands and then held it out to him.

 

“I think it’s time for you to have this.” Gibbs told him.

 

Tony shifted a little nervously where he was stood, naked, in front of his boss. He didn’t know whether to sit or not, there’d been no indication. He took the offered gift and hesitated slightly before carefully removing the paper; a stark contrast with his alter ego’s technique. He looked at the wooden box that was revealed, his hand slightly shaking and his brow creased as he opened it. He looked at the inside of the box, black velvet lining and nestling in it was the most beautiful collar he’d ever seen: Black leather, about an inch in diameter, that had been delicately engraved with an emerald green pattern, the pattern swirled around to circle each of the half dozen studs that it was set with, each one was encrusted with a diamond. Did this mean what he thought it did? It was surely too beautiful for Hero, so that could only mean...

 

The emotions welled up in him, but he had to be sure before he accepted it, “Is…” he started to speak, but his voice cracked, he swallowed and tried again, “does this mean what I think it does?”

 

Gibbs smiled at him, “Depends what you think.” He paused to give the tease time to have an effect, before putting him out of his confusion, “I want you to be my boy, Tony, in all ways. I know I’m already your owner as Hero, but I want to own all of you.”

 

Tony blinked repeatedly, trying to fight back the tears that welled up, he was happy…so incredibly happy, he couldn’t find the words. He nodded.

 

“I need to hear you say it.” Jethro urged, gently.

 

“Yes, yes Sir. God, please…” Shaking hands offered the open box back to the older man and he sank to his knees.

 

There was silence in the room as Gibbs took the collar from the case, unbuckled it and reached forward. “This is a symbol of my love and affection for you, Tony. It represents my responsibility to you, to take care of you physically, spiritually and emotionally; to guide you and to always do what is best for you. I promise to never do anything that will intentionally hurt you. In return, I ask that you put faith in me, that you lean on me when you need to, that you come to me when you’re hurt or in distress or just when you need to talk. I expect you to respect yourself, our home, Abby and myself, I expect you to always be honest with me and trust that I won’t take advantage of your vulnerability. I know it won’t always be easy, my boy, but I trust you to always communicate with me if you have questions or concerns, wants or needs.”

 

Tony swallowed hard, unable to look away from the intense ice blue eyes that felt like they were piercing right into the heart of him. His eyes were misting up, he could feel tears prickling at the back of his eyes.

 

“Do you accept my guidance, our love and support, Tony?”

 

The tears started to fall then, running in silent streams down his cheeks and going unchecked as he nodded, voice full of emotion as he confirmed, “I do, Sir, yes.”

 

The collar was fastened around his neck and gentle lips pressed against his forehead as he closed his eyes to try and compose himself. He felt fingers brush at his wet cheeks and opened his eyes to find the most affectionate look on his new Master’s face he’d ever seen. He didn’t get long to take it in before he was wrapped in warm strong arms and hugged fiercely. He buried his face into Jethro’s neck and breathed deep.

 

Abby whooped and clapped her hands together, then wrapped her arms around both of them, clutching them both tight. “Love you, both of you.” She told them and placed kisses on their heads. She squeezed again, and then pulled back, “We can get him chipped now, right?”

 

Tony pulled back and looked at her, his body going very still, “Chipped.”

 

“Abs!” Jethro growled, a sound that was softened by rolling his eyes.

 

Abby chewed on her lower lip. “Oops?”

 

He looked from one to the other, “You want to get me chipped?” This wasn’t happening, it couldn’t be.

 

Gibbs was sure it was a step too far, Tony’s response didn’t seem to indicate that the idea was particularly welcome.

 

“Well, you do have a habit of getting into trouble at work…and…” A look from her Master silenced her.

 

“Only if you want to.” Gibbs told him, a gentle hand cupping his tear streaked face.

 

“You’re kidding right?” It sounded a little more suspicious than he meant to.

 

The older man shook his head, “I don’t joke about things like that.”

 

“I… wow… that’s… wow…” He was stunned, they wanted to chip him; people only ever got their pets chipped if they planned on keeping them, forever. He grinned broadly. “When?”

 

The other two frowned in confusion.

 

“Don’t agree to it just to please us, pet.”

 

He shook his head, “No… you don’t understand… I want it, more than anything.” His bright eyes confirmed he was telling them the truth. “I just… I never thought…” His eyes dropped away, self-confidence disappearing.

 

“Never thought what, my boy?” Jethro tapped under his chin to get him to look back at them.

 

“I never thought you’d want to keep me… not forever… and… chipping is permanent.”

 

“Yes, it is.” Gibbs confirmed with a nod, “And I think we already covered the fact that you’re not going anywhere unless ‘you’ decide you want to leave and I’m not sure I could let you go even then.”

 

Tony was grinning so hard his cheeks hurt, then he surprised them both. “Can we go to bed now?”

 

~Fin~

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