The First Collar: 10. Part Ten


Gibbs hoped that Tony would choose to return, but he knew what the young sub needed right now was some time to figure out where his future lay. If he figured out that he could trust Gibbs then he’d come back. If not, then Gibbs knew he’d lose this one. It hurt, but he knew he’d done all he could. Meanwhile, there was another relationship that it *was* in his power to fix.


He jogged up the stairs to the director’s office, knocked on the door, and then poked his head around it. “Hey, Tom – are you and Jess free for dinner tonight?”


Morrow looked up. “Why? Planning another manipulation, Jethro?”


Gibbs sighed. “No. Just wanted to spend some time with good friends – and also to explain what’s been going on with DiNozzo now that the whole thing’s over.”


“Is it over?” Morrow raised an eyebrow.


Gibbs rubbed a hand over his chin and heard the soft rasp of his stubble. “Well, almost,” he admitted wryly. “What do you say? Have dinner with me – both of you. My treat.”


“You bet it is. You owe me.”


Gibbs grinned. “I know. For the coffee.”


He beat a hasty retreat before Morrow could find anything to throw at him.






Tony decided to go to Anon. He hadn’t been back there since the whole fiasco with Jake, and he was in the mood for rough sex with a stranger tonight.


It was still relatively early when he got there, and there wasn’t a hell of a lot of choice which was disappointing. Tony sat down at the bar and let his gaze drift over the available candidates; none of them exactly looked like his type.


His eye fell on a short, plump woman with spiky blonde hair. She had clear grey eyes and a commanding air, but she didn’t project an aura of great toppiness. In fact, she seemed diffident and lacking in confidence. She wasn’t his normal type – she was too safe – but beggars couldn’t be choosers, so he decided to approach her.


“Is this seat taken?” He gestured at the chair opposite hers.


She glanced up at him. “Oh fuck no,” she sighed.


“Hey – what did I do?” He raised his arms in a gesture of surprise. “I just asked if the seat was taken.”


“There are dozens of empty seats in the room.” She glanced around pointedly.


“I know. I wanted to sit with you.” He gave her his most charming smile.


She sighed again. “Yeah. That’s the problem. I’ve known too many subs like you. Good-looking, confident, teasing –and every single one a heart-breaking shit. I broke up with one just like you a few weeks ago.”


“Really?” Tony sat down anyway. “Wanna talk about it?”


“Not really.” She took a sip of her drink. “Subs are all the same. You take what you want and then move on.”


“Hmmm. See, my issue is with tops.”


“Really?” She sat back in her chair and gestured to him to elaborate.


“Yeah. You always win, no matter what. Somehow the deck is always stacked in your favour, and it’s always the subs who get crushed underfoot.”


“Not in my experience.” She snorted. “I’ve always loved my subs, always taken good care of them and treated them with respect. I give them anything they ask for…and when they’re done taking, they just walk out and move on – taking one last thing with them.”


“What’s that?”


“A piece of my heart.”


They gazed at each other, and Tony had an odd sensation of looking at his own mirror image.


“Tony.” He held out his hand.


“Stacy.” She took it and shook. “So you hate tops as much as I hate subs, huh?” She grinned at him.


“It’s not hate so much – just can’t trust you. Any of you.” Tony shrugged.


Stacy shook her head. “Don’t talk to me about trust. I have never once cheated on a sub or ignored a safe word. But I’ve been manipulated, lied to, cheated on…you name it, I’ve had it happen to me. Some subs are like emotional black holes. They suck you in with their endless dramas, and before you know it you find yourself lending them money, bailing them out of trouble, and picking them up in the middle of the night when their date dumped them even though they dumped *you* years ago.”


“Maybe you should tell them to fuck off,” Tony suggested.


“Strangely I find they ignore me when I do,” Stacy shot back pointedly. “Like the sub who sat at my table even when I made it clear I wasn’t interested.”


Tony grinned. “Ouch. Well, maybe you’re sending out mixed messages. You are in a bar called ‘Anon’ and it pretty much only exists for one purpose, Stacy.”


“I know. I was just hoping to find a plain, ordinary sub, if they exist. I’m done with the ones like you.”


“Ones like me?” Tony raised an eyebrow.


“Yeah – the pretty ones with the flashing eyes. The ones nobody can take their eyes off. The ones with charm and charisma who can have any top in the room – and they know it. That’s you, sweetheart. That’s why you strode over here, so full of yourself. I saw you. You walked in here, took a look around, and realised nobody in here was good enough for you. Then you saw me. You thought I’d be good for an hour’s fun until someone more your type showed up.”


Tony stared at her. “I guess I never saw it that way.”


“Yeah, well, too hyped up on your own damn drama I expect, to think anyone else might have a life, or, you know, feelings that can be hurt. Subs like you made my life a misery at high school, flirting with me just to make the other tops jealous and then dumping me the minute someone more high status came along. I thought all that would change as I got older, but you know what? It didn’t.”


“It’s not like all tops are victims and all subs are bastards,” Tony told her. “Never heard of abusive tops, Stacy?”


She rolled her eyes. “Plenty of times. It’s all you subs can bleat on about. And most tops are too damn proud to say that they’ve been involved with abusive subs, so that story doesn’t get told as often.” She leaned forward. “My last sub cleaned out my bank account when he left. One before that was cheating on me with three different tops, but she still expects me to drop everything and come running every time she calls. One before that stalked me for six months trying to make me collar him; used to send me creepy poems about sharing a plate.” She shuddered.


Tony gave a little laugh. “Okay, I give you that. Abusive subs definitely exist.”


He raised his glass to her, and she met it with her own. The glasses chinked as they knocked them together.


“So, it seems we have a lot in common,” Tony said.


“You think?” Stacy raised an eyebrow. “Seems to me like we have nothing at all in common.”


“Nah.” Tony grinned. “We both have trust issues. You don’t trust me, I don’t trust you. It could be the basis for a beautiful friendship.”


“Or a whole world of hurt.” She made a face at him, and they both laughed out loud. “So tell me your story then. What got you so fucked up?” she asked.


“Hmm. Where do I start? Okay, the last top I slept with ignored my safe word and called me a whore. The one before that fucked me over, made me lose my job, had someone break into my apartment, and then tried to get me put away for a crime I didn’t commit.”


Stacy whistled. “Bad stuff, Tony, but you know – dramatic.” She pulled a face. “Never met a sub yet who didn’t like the drama, even if they pretend to hate it.”


“Oh I don’t like the drama at all,” Tony assured her. “I hate the fucking drama.”


“Then why do you keep going after the kind of tops who’ll give you trouble, rather than the ones who’ll make you happy?” she asked him quietly.


“What?” He gulped down his drink.


“You heard me. You might not like the drama, but you go back for a reason, and I think I know what that reason is.”


“Really? You’ve known me less than an hour, and you know what makes me tick?”


“Yeah.” She leaned forward. “You want them all to let you down, Tony. It fits your worldview and stops you having to step outside your comfort zone. You only sleep with bastards so you can turn around later and say ‘all tops are bastards!’ But the truth is that you only go after the ones you know will hurt you. Then you can crawl back into yourself, hating tops, blaming them, not trusting them, when all the time you’re ignoring the good ones out here.”


“Ones like you?”


“Yeah, ones like me. The safe, steady, boring types. The ones who’ll come out in the middle of the night and pick you up because we can’t stop wanting to protect you, even when you don’t belong to us anymore.”


“Hmm.” Tony nodded thoughtfully. “Reminds me of a conversation I had with a friend of mine a few weeks ago; The Phantom versus the Countess Rula.” Stacy raised an eyebrow. Tony grinned. “It’d take too long to explain. But I don’t know if you’re right. I met a top recently…” he paused. Stacy smiled encouragingly. “He’s…different,” Tony said.


“Not a bastard then?”


“Oh, he’s a bastard,” Tony chuckled. “He’s definitely a bastard, but he’s also…he did some stuff for me. He kind of saved my life in a way. He saved me from going to jail or facing the bullwhip for sure. And he took a beating for me. Yet he doesn’t want anything in return. I can’t get my head around that. Why did he do it?”


“Is that why you’re thinking of running out on him?” Stacy asked.


“What?” Tony glared at her.


“That’s what you’re doing, isn’t it? Thinking of running out on him? He scares you, so you want to run as far away as possible.”


Tony gazed at her over the rim of his glass. She was right. She did know him. All too well it seemed. “Maybe,” he conceded. “I have been wondering whether to throw in my job, get out of town, and go somewhere else.”


“Like I said – run away,” Stacy snorted. “Coward.”


“Ouch. Again.” He chewed on his lip thoughtfully. “You could be right. Maybe Gibbs freaks me out so much because he’s the real deal. He’s the phantom and the Countess Rula rolled into one. He’s got all the scary sexual danger of the phantom, combined with the whole ‘I’ll keep you safe’ thing Rula had going on.” He laughed out loud. “Man, if he was here right now he’d slap me silly for saying that.”


“I like the sound of him.” Stacy smiled.


Tony smiled back at her. “And I like you. Hey – want to get a room for a few hours?”


She raised an eyebrow. “I would have thought something rough and dirty in the back room was more what you were looking for tonight. You came here to forget, didn’t you?”


“Didn’t you?” he shot back.


She laughed. “Touché. And yes. I did. A room you say?”


“Why not? I’m a sub, you’re a top – and I like you. See – there – that’s me stepping out of my comfort zone, isn’t it? Trying to bed one of the nice tops? You should give me points for at least trying to break the pattern.”


“And you think I should break out of my pattern by bedding precisely the kind of sub who always ends up hurting me?” She raised a cynical eyebrow.


“It’s just sex. I’m not gonna start stalking you for a collar – that much at least I can promise.” He laughed. “Also – I’m pretty. And I’m obedient in the bedroom. Well, kinda.” He winked.


“You like being taken down?”


“Yes. You don’t like taking a sub down?”


“I prefer something less…dramatic.” She smiled. “Something a bit more gentle. You up for that?”


“I usually like it rough when I want to be taken out of myself.”


“Maybe you need to stop looking to escape and turn and face yourself instead.”


“Does the psychoanalysis have to accompany the hot sex or could we skip it?” Tony raised an eyebrow.


She laughed. “Okay, heartbreaker, I’ll give it a try. What are you into?”


She took his wrist in her hand and squeezed gently. It felt nice – too nice. It wasn’t what he was used to. She didn’t have Jake’s leaden, brutish, sexual energy, or Dana’s exquisitely cruel sense of power. Her touch didn’t send sparks shooting up his arm or make his body spontaneously surrender, like with Gibbs. It just felt…nice.


He sensed her dynamic from her touch. She’d tie a sub up and gently caress his body. She’d do anything for her sub, wining and dining him before carefully taking him to orgasm. She’d want the best for him, and she’d lose herself somewhere in the process. She was just too nice. He couldn’t get away from the word. That was what she was, no matter how tough she tried to talk. But maybe nice was what he needed right now.


“I’m into most things,” he told her. “I won’t be tied – not even by you, however kind and responsible you seem.”


“I didn’t think for a second you would, Mr. Trust Issues.”


“You can gag me if I’m annoying you though.” He grinned. “Oh, and my safe word is lemming.”
She raised an eyebrow. He sighed. “It’s meaningless. My safe word says nothing about me. I chose it on purpose for that reason.”


“If you say so.”


“You can spank me as hard as you like – well, I prefer moderate, but I can take heavy. You can clamp me wherever you like. You can fuck me with a strap-on, or have me fuck you to order – I’m good at holding on for as long as it pleases my top, and I can get hard again quickly if you want to use me again. I also have a very agile tongue, if you’d prefer me to serve you that way.” He licked his lips suggestively, and she laughed again.


“I don’t want to do a heavy scene with you, Tony. I’d rather ask you to hold still and then ride you. How does that sound?”


“Well, kinda tame to be honest, but I’m up for it. I’ll pay for the room,” he said firmly, moving his wrist out of the gentle circle of her hand and standing up.


He remembered what had happened with Jake, and he didn’t intend to make that mistake again. He’d ended up feeling like a whore, as if he’d been bought and paid for, and he didn’t want to hurt Stacy by turning mean on her. She was too…nice.






Gibbs glanced up as Tom and Jessica Morrow walked into the restaurant. He studied them for a moment; Morrow was leashed, and he was walking in perfect step with Jessica, their bodies at ease with each other. They walked like a good top and sub should walk – like they belonged together.


They saw him and came over to the table. Morrow was relaxed enough, but Jessica gave him an icy smile.


“Jethro.” Even her greeting sounded frosty.


Gibbs winced. “Jessica. I can see Tom’s told you everything.”


“Of course. I can’t believe you put him in such an unpleasant position, Jethro.”


“The position was a hell of a lot more unpleasant for me, believe me,” he said wryly.


Her eyes flashed. “At least you chose to put yourself there.”


“I know, I know,” he sighed. “C’mon, sit down. Let me explain.”


They sat down and took a look at the menu. Morrow whistled. “Pricey place, Jethro. I must be paying you too much.”


“Well, like you said, I owe you.”


Morrow grinned. “The coffee wasn’t this expensive, Jethro.”


“No, but our friendship is worth a hell of a lot more than the price of a cup of coffee, Tom.”


Morrow nodded thoughtfully.


Jessica pursed her lips together, looking less convinced. “You’re the one that needs reminding of that, Jethro, not Tom.”


“I don’t blame you for feeling that way.” She was Morrow’s top, and Gibbs’s actions had hurt her husband, so she was wary of him right now. She just wanted to protect her sub. He felt the same way about Abby and Ducky…and Tony. He pushed that thought away; as Tony had so clearly reminded him yesterday, he was not Gibbs’s sub.


“Let me explain what happened and then see what you think,” Gibbs told her.


She gave him a curt nod, and he started at the beginning and told them both everything that had been happening with Tony DiNozzo.






Tony went over to the bar and paid for a room, taking the key the barman handed to him. He winced as he saw the room number: 19. Just his luck; it was the same room he’d shared with Jake.


Stacy bought a bottle of wine, and Tony raised an eyebrow.


“What? You have a problem with a little romance?” she asked.


“No – just as long as we’re both clear this isn’t going anywhere,” he told her firmly. “I’m just here for the sex, and you’re not going to get hurt. Yes?”


“Yes.” She took two glasses from the barman and followed him up the stairs.


He opened the door – it looked exactly the same as it had the last time he was here. His heart sank a little; it was such a nasty place.


“Seedy,” Stacy said, glancing around.


“Yeah. Sordid.” He sighed. “Only alternative is me taking you back to my place, or you taking me back to your place, and I guess neither of us trusts each other enough for that.”


“Nope.” She put the glasses down on the table and poured wine into them. “I wish there were candles,” she said, glancing around the room.


“What did I say about romance?” he chided. She handed him a glass of wine, and he sipped it. “Mmm – nice stuff. Expensive.”


“Well, you know me – only the best for a sub of mine, even if he is only a one night stand.”


She took a sip from her own glass and then replaced it on the table. He put his down beside it, and Stacy grabbed his wrist and pulled him close. He towered over her, but he liked her forthright style.


“So you say you have an agile tongue, huh?” She pulled his head down and kissed his lips. Her mouth was soft and gentle, and he returned the kiss in the same way.


She drew back. “Kneel down, submissive,” she ordered.


Tony sank to his knees obediently. She put a hand in his hair, drew his head back, and traced a finger down his exposed throat.


“You really are far too pretty,” she murmured.


She slid her fingers into his shirt, unbuttoning it, and he held position, head still forced back. He liked her – she was subtle, but she had some power there even if she wasn’t as confident about wielding it as she should be.


She undid his shirt and pulled it off his shoulders.


“Mmmm…” She gently ran her fingers over his chest and toyed with one of his nipples. He shivered. “Stand up.” He got to his feet immediately, and she undid his pants and let them fall to the floor. He was naked underneath and that made her smile. “You always go commando?”


“Yup! Like to think of myself being available for a top to use if they’re in the mood.” He grinned at her cheekily.


“You’re beautiful – like a thoroughbred racehorse. All long, lean lines…” She traced a hand over his flank. “What the hell are you doing here with me?” she asked, and her voice was suddenly tight and uncertain. “I bet you usually only bed good-looking tops, Tony. This must be a come down for you.”


“No, not at all.” He gathered her up in his arms and kissed her forehead gently. “You’re nicer than anyone I’ve ever slept with, Stacy. I like you.”


“But I’m not turning you on.” She slid her hand down and fondled his flaccid cock gently.


“Well, we’re only just getting started! And you’re not naked yet!”


She bit on her lip, and he could see the worry in her eyes. She didn’t have any confidence about her own body after seeing his. She simply didn’t think she was in his league.


“You’re right,” he said softly, stroking her spiky blonde hair. “I do always choose the bastards to stay inside my comfort zone. Now I’m choosing you. I’m choosing *you*, Stacy. Show me the difference.”


She gave him a little smile. “Okay, submissive. Let me see what you’ve got. Bend over.”


He bent elegantly from the waist, giving her a full view of his ass. She ran her hand over it and then spanked out a gentle beat. She warmed him up and then ordered him to lie on his back on the bed. He did as he’d been told, watching eagerly as she pulled her sweater over her head and undid her bra. She had sweetly plump breasts and her body was soft and curvy, the flesh pink and dimpled.


“I know I’m fat,” she said, climbing onto the bed.


“Some of the sexiest tops I’ve known were a hell of a lot fatter than you.” He grinned.


“Charmer.” She grasped his arms and pushed them above his head. “Keep them there. Don’t break position without permission.”


“Yes…uh…what do you want me to call you? Mistress?”


“Stacy,” she replied. “Let’s not pretend we’re something to each other that we’re not.”


She was nothing like Dana. She didn’t have a perfect body. She didn’t have an aura of total control. Her body was warm, earthy and pleasant. She felt…real.


She put him in the position she wanted and then began tracing her fingers over his body. She sucked on his nipples, holding him down while she teased them with her tongue. She was commanding but gentle. Her dominance was sweet but sincere.


Tony closed his eyes and remembered being in that dressing room with Gibbs pressing against him. He remembered the touch of Gibbs’s fingers on his wrist and the way his body had voluntarily surrendered – something it had never done before. What would it feel like to be lying here with Gibbs working on him, instead of this nice, gentle top? How would it feel to be the focus of all Gibbs’s powerful, dominant energy?


“Give it up for me, Tony,” Stacy whispered as she worked on him. “Give it all up. Come on…that’s it…good submissive. Surrender to me.”


He opened his eyes and watched her playing with him. She was a good top – efficient and purposeful. She was taking her time, talking to him, trying to get him in the mood. He loved her for it and wanted so much to please her…but his body, it seemed, did not.


“I can’t ride you if you won’t get hard. Get hard for me, submissive,” she ordered.


He tried, but nothing happened; his cock remained resolutely flaccid. “Maybe I’m more screwed up than I thought,” he told her, shame-faced. “I’m sorry. You’re so beautiful too. I want to be turned on.”


“Beautiful? Me?” She gave a derisory little snort.


“Yes.” He broke position and grabbed her face in his hands. “I want to…but…I don’t know what’s wrong with me. It isn’t you, trust me. I can get hard if someone brushes up against me in the wrong way, or says my name in a certain tone of voice. I know I like you, and I definitely like what you’re doing to me.”


“Hmmm.” She nestled down beside him and took him in her arms. “I don’t think you and me were meant to be, Tony,” she sighed.


He burrowed his face in her neck. “Damn it, what’s wrong with me?” he asked in despair. Sex always worked for him – he always got hard when a top ordered him.


“I think I know.”


He leaned back and gazed at her.


“Have you ever been in love, Tony?” she asked.


He shook his head. “Never.”


“Well, I think you are now,” she told him.


He shook his head, confused. “You’re nice, Stacy, and I know you’re one hell of a romantic, but we’ve only just met.”


She laughed out loud. “Not with me, idiot.” She stroked his hair gently. “With this Gibbs person you were talking about. I think you’re in love with him, Tony. And I don’t think I’m the only romantic in the room. I think that’s what you are too, deep inside.”


“Me?” He gave her an incredulous look. “A romantic?”


“Well you were the one who said how much we have in common. You don’t trust tops, and I don’t trust subs – but isn’t that only because we want to love them and don’t want our hearts to get broken? I think this Gibbs person found a way into your heart, no matter how hard you tried to protect it. And you are a romantic, Tony – when you’re in love with one person you can’t make love to another, no matter how hard you try.”


“I’m not in love with Gibbs.” Tony sat up, feeling angry.


“Why does the idea upset you so much?”


“Because I don’t do love. I never have. I’m not in love with Gibbs,” he repeated firmly.


“No, you don’t *want* to be in love with Gibbs – and that’s something else entirely.”


He ran his hands through his hair. “No. I mean I *can’t* be in love with Gibbs.”


“Why not?”


“Because he’s…he’s not available. He’s all closed off. He won’t take a sub to his bed, and I have way too much pride to beg.”


“Maybe that’s for the best?” Stacy suggested. He looked at her. “Well, you do seem to be pretty screwed up, and you told me yourself that you look to escape in sex. Maybe what you need right now is just to get to know the guy more? Without the pressure of sex? Maybe what you need right now, more than sex, more than anything else, is to just learn how to trust him?”


“I don’t trust tops,” Tony told her automatically.


“I know. I don’t trust subs either.” She smiled at him. “But I want to – and you want to as well, Tony. Why not give it a try with this guy? If you can learn to trust him, maybe the sex will come later? When he’s ready – and when you are too. Maybe you’ve always given it away too easily in the past. Maybe you need to stop doing that and try something else instead.”


“You really are a romantic.” He gave a little laugh.


“Takes one to know one.” She got up, retrieved their wine glasses and then returned to the bed and gave his glass to him. “If you do what you always do, you get what you always get, Tony.”


“That’s very profound, Stacy.” He took a sip of his wine and grinned at her over the rim of the glass.


She shook her head. “You don’t have to be on the run your entire life, Tony. You can choose to stop and listen to your heart. You can choose to trust a top for once. You can choose love.”


“And you don’t have to answer the phone in the middle of the night when she calls you to come pick her up,” he told her softly.


“No. No, I don’t. We can both change, Tony. I’m sure of it.”




“How did you know?” Stacy asked quietly. “About her. How did you know?”


“How did I know that she was the one who broke your heart? I just knew. You told me about all the others – the one who cleared out your bank account, and the one who stalked you and sent you all the really bad poetry. But you kept coming back to her – the one who calls you in the middle of the night to go pick her up. She’s the only one you really care about. You hate yourself for going, but you can’t resist because you love her, even though you know she’s just using you.”


“Yes. I know. Look, I’ll choose to stop loving her if you choose to start trusting him,” she said. “Maybe that way we can both make things change.”


“I don’t know that I can do that.”


“Me neither!” She laughed out loud, and he joined in.


They stayed there together, sipping their wine, holding each other, for a long time. Then, finally, he got up and got dressed. She lay there, on the bed, naked, watching him. When he was done he went over there and knelt down beside her.


“Thank you, Stacy,” he said softly. He kissed her gently on the mouth and then stepped back. “You really are very beautiful.”


“Idiot,” she replied, smiling.


“Yeah, that’s me.” He smiled back, and then he turned and left the room.






“Well, that’s confirmed one thing for me.” Morrow sat back in his chair as Gibbs finished telling his story. Gibbs arched an eyebrow. “DiNozzo is a trouble magnet, just like I knew he would be the minute you hired him,” Morrow said.


Gibbs sighed. “Maybe. But none of this was the kid’s fault. He was innocent in all this, and he got thoroughly screwed over.”


“I agree,” Jessica said, surprising him. “And you did the right thing, Jethro, much as it pains me to say it.” She glanced at her husband and then back at Gibbs.


Morrow nodded. “Jess is right. I don’t like the way you went about it, and next time I’d prefer it if you included me in your thought process, Jethro, but I’m glad you helped DiNozzo out.”


“So are you going to collar him?” Jessica asked.


Gibbs nearly choked on the mouthful of food he was chewing. He reached for his glass of water, coughing heartily. “What?” he growled.


“Well, you do have an unorthodox approach to collaring subs, Jethro.” She shrugged. “And although I’ve never understood what you get out of it, it does seem to work. For you and for them.”


“Tony’s a tough kid. He’s survived on his own for a long time. I don’t think he’s in any hurry to take a top’s collar,” Gibbs told her, with a firm shake of his head.


“Shame,” Morrow murmured. “Because, to be frank with you, Jethro, the only way I think you’ll get him to calm him down and stay out of trouble is if you put your collar on him, with all the conditions that come with it. At least that way he’ll have some discipline in his life.”


“And someone to call him on his crap,” Jessica added. “Because although he might disobey his boss, I suspect he’d think twice about disobeying his top.”


“Especially knowing you’ll tan his ass for him if he does.” Morrow grinned.


“He’s a handful of course,” Jessica said, taking a sip of her wine. “And as you won’t allow any subs of yours to take public discipline, you’ll have to work hard to make sure he doesn’t screw up so spectacularly that you have to step in and take a punishment for him.”


“Because next time I might not be so kind as to allow it to be private,” Morrow said. “Mind you, it’d be interesting to see if anyone turned up to see you taking public licks, Jethro. My guess is the NCIS discipline room would either be packed to the rafters or completely deserted.”


“It would depend on whether or not curiosity won out over sheer terror I suppose!” Jessica laughed.


Gibbs stared at them both. They gave him sweet smiles in response.


“You *want* me to collar DiNozzo?” he asked incredulously. “I’ve known him for less than three weeks!”


Morrow shrugged. “I don’t think it’s a question of want, Jethro. It’s more that there’s a certain kind of inevitability to it.”


“You do have a habit of collaring the people on your team, Jethro,” Jessica pointed out.


“Only if it’s what they want and if I think they need it!” Gibbs protested.


“I doubt there’s anyone in the entire world who needs it more than Tony DiNozzo.” Morrow gave a wry chuckle. “Honestly, Jethro, there’s no way you’ll be able to stand having that kid on your team and not being able to spank his ass regularly without jumping through HR hoops to do it. If you collar him then you’ll be able to spank him at your own discretion whenever you think he needs it. Don’t tell me your hands aren’t itching to buckle a collar around his neck right now.”


Gibbs glared at him but his fingers were twitching all the same. Morrow burst out laughing, and Jessica joined in.


“We know you too well, my friend,” Morrow said.






Tony pushed his way through the crowds in the bar on his way out of Anon. The place had been deserted a couple of hours ago but now it was heaving.


He gave up trying to shove his way through the throng and made for the back door that led out onto the alley instead, knowing it would be quieter.


The cool night air hit him after the stuffy atmosphere in the club, and he took a few deep breaths, relieved to be out of there. He leaned back against the outside wall of the club and closed his eyes, going over his conversation with Stacy endlessly in his mind.


In love? With Gibbs? No, that was insane. He didn’t know what love was. He had no idea what it even felt like. He remembered the warm feeling he got in his belly whenever Gibbs slapped the back of his head and how sparks flew between them whenever they touched. Was that love? Did Gibbs feel it too? He remembered the way his body had once submitted to Gibbs of its own volition, as if he wasn’t even in control of it. Was *that* love? He didn’t have a clue.


He opened his eyes, pushed away from the wall, and began walking down the alley towards the parking lot, still lost in thought.


If it was love, then what the hell did he do about it? Gibbs didn’t seem interested in taking any subs to his bed, so there didn’t seem to be much future for it. Should Tony go to him? Confess to this new emotion that he didn’t even understand? Or should he do what Stacy had advised and just learn to trust the man first, without sex getting in the way?


He heard footsteps ahead and looked up – and his heart sank. Jake was standing in front of him, hands on hips, blocking the exit to the alley.


“Well, if it isn’t Tony. I thought I saw you leaving the bar in a hurry.”


“Fuck off, Jake. I’m not in the mood for you tonight.”


“That’s a shame because I’m in the mood for taking down a smart-mouthed sub and showing him who’s boss.”


“Yeah, well, you tried that a couple of times as I recall, and whaddya know? I kicked your ass, so I guess that makes me boss,” Tony snapped.


Jake’s smile didn’t falter. Tony started to feel uneasy.


“Look, I don’t want any trouble,” Tony said quickly. “You’ve tried to fight me twice, and you lost both times. Do you really want more of the same?”


“What I want is to teach you a lesson you won’t forget in a hurry,” Jake replied. He walked towards Tony, slowly and threateningly. “You humiliated me, you bastard.”


“Well, you pissed me off,” Tony snapped.


Jake ignored him. “And now, it’s time for me to return the favour. I enjoy humiliating subs, especially mouthy ones like you who need to learn their place.”


“My place?” Tony was feeling more and more apprehensive about this. Jake was far too cocky for someone whose ass he’d kicked twice now. He glanced over his shoulder and saw the reason for Jake’s confidence; two of his friends were standing behind Tony, blocking the alley’s other exit. Oh shit.


One against three – Tony was a scrappy fighter, but he had a feeling he’d be taking a beating tonight.


He made a run for it, diving back towards the club’s door – only to find that it couldn’t be opened from the outside. Thwarted, he turned back to find Jake walking menacingly towards him, a nasty leer on his face.


“Your place, Tony. I’m going to show you exactly what your place is tonight.”


Jake nodded to his two friends, and they made a grab for him. Tony managed to swing a few good punches, but three against one weren’t good odds, and he didn’t have his badge or his gun on him.


A punch sent him crashing into the wall, winding him, and his assailants closed in. One of the men caught hold of his arms and immobilised them behind his back, while the other grabbed a fistful of his hair. Then he was pushed down onto his knees.


“That’s right.” Jake stopped in front of him. Tony’s head was pulled back, forcing him to look up at Jake. “This is your place, Tony,” Jake said triumphantly. “This where you belong, you subby sack of shit: on your knees and in the gutter.”


“Don’t do this, Jake,” Tony said quietly. “Let me go.”


Jake swung out a backhander, and Tony went flying sideways. He could taste the tang of fresh blood from his split lip as he was hauled back into position.


“I’m not going to let you go until you’ve paid me back for what you did,” Jake hissed. “I was tied up in that room for hours because of you, and I don’t appreciate being humiliated in front of my friends.”


“Oh, you didn’t need me to humiliate you,” Tony replied, unable to help himself. “You can do it all by yourself.”


“Is that so?” Jake’s eyes glinted in the dark alley. “Well tonight you’re gonna know what it feels like to be humiliated, Tony.”


He reached into his jacket pocket and pulled out the collar he’d tried to persuade Tony to wear the first time they’d met.


Tony shook his head, feeling himself start to shake. “No. Don’t do this, Jake. Please.”


“I like it when you beg, Tony. It’s a good sound.” Jake gave him a vicious smile.


“There’s a law against it, Jake,” Tony said desperately as Jake began unbuckling the collar. His stomach churned at the thought of being forced to wear it. He had never worn a top’s collar in his life. He’d never wanted to. There was only one top in the world whose collar he’d wear, and it sure as hell wasn’t Jake. “If you force a collar on an unwilling sub then you’re breaking the law, Jake. You know that.”


“Aw…I’m breaking the law.” Jake made a face. “You know what? I can live with that, Tony. Just like you’re gonna live with this.”


He nodded to his friends, and Tony felt the fist in his hair tighten, drawing his head back even more, exposing his throat.




Tony screamed out his anger and sense of violation as Jake reached out towards him. A collar was important. It was about so many things that Tony held dear to his heart, even though he professed not to believe in any of them. He thought of all the many people he’d slept with, and how he’d never, ever agreed to wear their collars. God, Stacy was right; he was a stupid fucking romantic, but it mattered. Damn it…it mattered.


He struggled with all his might as Jake strapped that hated strip of leather around his neck. It hurt. It hurt deep inside in a way he couldn’t even begin to process. He sobbed as the buckle was pulled tight – tighter than was comfortable. It felt hard, restrictive and unwanted. He was not owned by this man. He did not agree to this. He did not submit. This could not be happening to him.


“Aw – now that looks pretty.” Jake took a step back and admired the collar that was now buckled tight around Tony’s throat. “See that collar, Tony? That says you’re mine now. You’re my collared sub, and you belong to me.”


“The collar doesn’t mean shit. You put it on me by force. I’m not yours. I don’t belong to you,” Tony choked. He thought he was going to suffocate. The collar was like a fist closing around his windpipe, and it was going to strangle the life out of him.


“Collar round your neck says you do.” Jake gave a smug smile.


“Can’t,” Tony spat. “Can’t belong to you.”


“You saying I’m not good enough for you?” Jake backhanded him again, and Tony’s head snapped back and then flopped forwards. He gazed at the ground, breathing heavily, his arms still immobilised behind his back. A hard hand was pressing on his shoulder, keeping him on his knees.


“Can’t belong to you.” He looked up at Jake. “Can’t belong to you because I belong to someone else.” It was the truth he’d been trying to deny when he walked out of the club, but now, kneeling here, wearing another top’s collar, he knew it wasn’t a truth he could deny anymore.


“Then that someone else shoulda put a collar on you, so I knew you were claimed,” Jake taunted. “’Cause it seems to me that you’re just an un-collared sub looking for a top to show you who’s boss.”


“Boss.” Tony hung his head, still struggling to breathe. “Yes. Boss.” He laughed out loud and a few drops of blood from his split lip dripped onto the ground. “You’re not my boss, Jake. The collar means nothing. I repudiate your collar. I hate your fucking collar!”


“Too bad. You’re gonna wear it while I fuck that pretty mouth of yours.”


Tony looked up angrily. “You put your stinking cock in my mouth and that’s the last thing you’ll ever do with it.”


“Aw – is that any way to talk to your top?” Jake slapped him again, hard, and his head went sideways. He was hauled back into position, arms pinned behind his back, head pulled back by the hair.


“I’m not asking for a blow job,” Jake told him with a vicious grin. “No – you’re my collared sub, so I’m gonna use your mouth the way I want, and you’re gonna take it. And here’s why.”


He nodded, and Tony felt one of his captors move. Then he felt the sharp point of a knife digging into the side of his neck.


“If you try and stop me, or if you try and bite down while I fuck your mouth, then Mark here will slit your throat. Understand that, submissive? You’re collared, boy. I *own* you, and I’m gonna enjoy this.”


Jake opened his fly and eased out his hard cock, fondling it obscenely. Tony tried to decide whether it would be better to have his throat cut rather than suffer this humiliation but in the end he knew he had no choice. He was all out of options.


“Open your mouth,” Jake ordered.


Tony glared up at him mutely. The knife was jabbed into his skin, cutting him, and he felt warm blood flowing down his neck. He opened his mouth.


Jake grabbed hold of his head and thrust in so hard that he made Tony gag as his cock hit the back of his throat.


“That’s good, that’s what you’re for, you piece of subby shit. This is all you’re good for. Take it, take it, take it, you fucking whore.” Jake repeated the words over and over again as he thrust into Tony’s mouth.


Tony couldn’t blank out any of it; not the constant feeling of choking, or the restrictive tightness of the unwanted collar around his neck. Not the sharp point of the knife digging into his skin, or the prickling sensation of Jake’s pubic hair against his face as he thrust in. It was all too vivid and real. He gagged at the taste of Jake’s dick in his mouth and flinched from the hard slap of his balls against his chin.


His soul rebelled against what was being done to him. This wasn’t who he was! He was always so careful about having safe sex. He always took care of himself and did a damn good job of it too. This couldn’t be happening to him. He couldn’t be kneeling here, in this dark alley, being made to take this agonising humiliation…and yet he was.


Tony felt like he was suffocating. The collar around his throat was choking him even as Jake’s cock did the same thing, ramming into his mouth and blocking his airway.


This bastard was violating him in every way, and Tony raged inside. Nobody collared him. Nobody. He didn’t belong to Jake. There was only one person in the whole damn world he belonged to and that was Gibbs.


He knew that, deep inside. He’d known it, on some level, from the moment he first met the man. He’d just been struggling to come to terms with it. He had never submitted to anyone except Gibbs, and he knew now that he never would.


His jaw ached and his lips were sore and swollen. His arms hurt where they were twisted up behind his back and his knees ached from kneeling on the hard ground. He closed his eyes and lived through the nightmare of what was being done to him, reminding himself over and over again that he belonged to Gibbs. It was the only way he could get through it.


He felt Jake convulse and then felt his come gushing out down his throat. Jake withdrew and ejaculated again – on Tony’s face and leather jacket this time.


Then he held his spent dick in front of Tony’s face. “Lick me clean,” he ordered.


“Bite me,” Tony replied.


His hair was grabbed again and his head pushed forwards in the direction of Jake’s dick. He felt a wave of nausea, and he began to retch. Jake moved his dick away fast.


“You fucking animal! Don’t you dare throw up on me!”


The man holding Tony released him, and Tony went down on all fours and retched again, his stomach heaving. He glanced up to see Jake tucking his dick back in his pants. Jake looked down on him with a triumphant grin.


“Well, it’s been fun, Tony. You can keep the collar; it looks good on you.”


He laughed and his friends joined in, looking down on him as they high-fived, savouring their victory. They were still laughing as they ran off down the alley and disappeared from sight.


Tony reached up to pull the collar from his neck. His fingers were shaking so much that he couldn’t get purchase on the buckle, and he sobbed as he struggled with it. He finally managed to wrench it free and threw the hated thing on the ground. He was hit by another wave of nausea and crouched over the collar and threw up Jake’s ejaculate onto it.


Tasting Jake’s semen coming back up made him feel even more nauseous. His stomach cramped, and he vomited the wine he’d drunk earlier and then the meal he’d eaten several hours ago.


He heaved his guts out, kneeling in that alley on all fours. Then he stared down at his own vomit which was spewed all over the hated collar lying on the ground in front of him.


So this was rock bottom. He couldn’t go any lower. Everything else – all that had happened with his father, with his screwed up job history, with all the many mistakes he’d made in his life, and with Dana Morley – all of it had been leading to this one ultimate low point. This was definitely rock bottom.


He didn’t know what to do. Everything hurt so much, including his pride. He managed to drag himself to his feet, holding onto the wall beside him, and then he slowly staggered down the alley, still holding on.


He found his way to his car somehow, got inside, and locked the door. Then he rested his head on the steering wheel and tried to calm himself down.


Where should he go? Should he go to the police? His stomach roiled at that thought. He didn’t want to do that. Maybe he should go home, take a bath, curl up in bed and try to forget…but he didn’t want to be alone.


He wanted to go somewhere safe and be taken care of for once in his damn life, and he hated himself for feeling that way. He had always been able to take care of himself. Always. He’d had to. Nobody else ever had. He could do it now too. All he had to do was go home, crawl into bed, and pull the blanket over his head…but he couldn’t. He wanted someone…he *needed* someone to hold him. He longed to feel strong arms around his body, holding him tight and comforting him, keeping him safe. He couldn’t keep doing this alone. What was it Gibbs had said? He had to learn to accept help when it was given. Asking for it was harder though; much harder.


He could go back to Anon and seek out Stacy if she was still there – but he wouldn’t do that to her. He almost laughed out loud at the thought of giving her precisely the ‘fucking drama’ she hated so much.


There was Abby. She’d welcome him in…and he’d break her heart if he showed up on her doorstep looking like this. He didn’t have a clue where Ducky lived, and he knew he couldn’t face the genial doctor in any case.


It didn’t matter anyway, because there was only one place he wanted to go, only one person he’d allow to see him in this condition, and only one man’s arms he wanted to feel around him.


End of Part Ten


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