Chapter 3

He was so glad to be home again once the Daedalus had beamed them down, and Carter was smiling from her spot in the gate room. “Welcome home.”

“Thanks Carter,” he nodded and looked at Ziva who stood nailed to the floor, eyes wide, mouth open. “Close that mouth unless you want to catch flies.” John grinned.

Ziva looked at him. “You have flies here too?” she asked, dumbfounded.

“Well not here, but on the planets, sure.” he mused.

Speechless, she looked around at the room they were in. While everyone else immediately set about their routine business, she was frozen in place. Ziva could not help but grin at John as his base was simply a beautiful piece of heaven.

“I’d like to welcome you to Atlantis Miss David,” Carter said after she made her way down the steps.

“Dah-veed,” she immediately replied, a force of habit to correcting the pronunciation of her surname.

“Ziva, meet Colonel Samantha Carter.”

She reached out to shake the woman’s hand but her eyes were still looking everywhere else, unable to settle on one spot for too long. The fighter in her was mentally calculating defensive measures but not knowing the layout, she felt so vulnerable to everyone.

“John, why won’t you show Miss Dah-veed her quarters so she can start settling in?” Sam suggested with a smile. “Then report to me.”

“Yes ma’am,” John nodded and took the paper with Ziva’s quarters written on them from Carter. It was near the armory and oh crapnear his. “Easy peasy.”

Ziva hoisted her bag over her shoulder and nodded to John to lead the way. “I don’t know how you could even return to Earth at all after living here,” she said. “I believe I would fight tooth and nail if Vance tried bringing me back.”

“Told you so,” John responded and showed her into a transporter where he started to explain how it worked. “This dot, is near you. You press it and it takes you there.”

Reaching out to press the area he pointed, she jumped when the doors slid closed and was flooded with light. Next thing she knew, the doors opened again and she peered out. “We are not in the same location?”

“Nope,” he said and walked out, taking her hand while doing so. “This level is mostly used for personnel quarters, and the armory.”

Ziva nodded. “Good to know. It’s been awhile – aside from that Wraith – that I’ve been in a good fight.”

“We try not to get into any fights out there, Ziva,” he chuckled. “But trouble always finds us for some reason.” He waved his hand over the control panel of her quarters and pointed into her quarters. “As you can see, the Daedalus has been so kind as to teleport your stuff into your quarters.”

She was impressed. “Wow, I think this is bigger than the bedroom I had before my apartment blew up,” she said walking in. “I was surprised that the SGC okay’d all the things that I wanted to bring. Especially my knife collection. I had thought that would have been denied.”

“Yeah well…” he smirked. “Gibbs told me about your ability to handle knives, I would have felt bad if you weren’t able to play with those anymore and we had to go out looking for some here in the galaxy.” he continued. “Try that without getting into trouble.”

“Maybe one day I will have to demonstrate my talents for you,” she grinned as she went into the room further and pushed aside the curtains to look outside. “Oh my god! I have a balcony!” she cried out as she tried to figure out how to open the door when it opened on its own. “Did you do that?”

“Nope,” he shook his head. “The city is quite intelligent. When we first came here, the lights went on by itself. However, the way that door opened? I think you might have the gene.”

Nodding, she went to look outside and was just astounded by how big everything was. “Do you think these Ancients and Dr. Freud had any relation?”

“Who knows,” he shrugged. “Freud could have been an ancient for all we know.”

“Hm,” was all Ziva said in response. “Well I should unpack if you want to go find your Colonel Carter. She mentioned wanting to meet with you before. Um…How do I get you if I have any questions, like how to find this Doctor Beckett for that test you mentioned?”

“Oh don’t worry, you’ll just focus on settling yourself in, he’ll find you.” John nodded, not wanting to complicate things for Ziva just yet as the whole experience of just being on Atlantis for the first time was quite the shock to begin with. “Also, as you’ve never been into my apartment simply because I don’t have one, if you leave your quarters and go two doors down to your left, it’s my quarters. You can go ahead and check that out too if you want.”

She nodded and grinned. “I suppose you don’t lock your door then. That should be interesting for us if I were to ever stay the night,” she teased.

He chuckled. “Nah, I’m going to unlock it for you and only you to enter before I go and see Carter.”

Ziva went up to him and laid a gentle kiss on John’s lips. “Thank you for letting me into this wonderful secret of yours,” she said.

“Don’t thank me, thank your Director.” he smiled and kissed her back. “I’ll see you in a bit.”

“Sounds good. If you’re not busy later, I really would like to see what your people have for a gym. I need a good workout after two weeks on that bucket,” she said turning to open her first box that contained her off duty clothes…casual shirts, pants, and matching panty sets right on top.

John stopped by his quarters to check and see if he needed to clean anything up before Ziva would come in, but it looked neat enough. He then set the door to open for everyone and made his way to Carter. “You,” he said. “Are a meanie.”

“How so, John?” Carter smiled. “For giving you extra time with that gorgeous girl of yours? She really is a looker.”

“Yeah well, I was ready to come back you know.”

Sam shook her head. “But if you did come back when you were supposed to, you might not have this opportunity to work with and pursue your relationship further. Everyone just wants you to be happy and I know I can see that there is something between you.”

He sighed. “I was fine without her you know,” he pointed out. “Not everyone is wired for a relationship and I certainly didn’t expect the IOA and Homeworld to contact SecNav for an NCIS agent afloat on Atlantis, I mean, what is she going to do here?”

“Are you saying that you are not happy around her? And she is a skilled investigator and fighter. We could certainly use her on off world missions. I’ve read her dossier, the one that included her Mossad background. Think of her as an Earth combination of Teyla and Ronon. The SGC would be fools to pass that up!”

“I’m not saying I’m not happy around her or that she’s here… and yes, I already figured that she’s a combination of those two but yeah… whatever.” he shrugged. “You probably want to know about the Wraith on Earth.”

Carter sat down at her desk. “How did the NCIS agents handle the situation?” she asked curiously and pulled out a bag of lolly pops from her desk. A guilty pleasure of hers and tossed John one knowing he had a thing for sweets.

“Ah, I think better than expected,” he said, unwrapping the lolly pop and put it in his mouth with a thankful nod. “I think that Agent Gibbs thought we were escapees out of a mental institute at first, ready to put us back.”

“Yea, General O’Neill had to deal with him a few times on the phone. He’s not an easy character to get around but orders are orders,” she sighed. Sam looked at John for a moment debating on how to break the next bit of news to him.

“Well, I don’t really understand why Ziva told me that that Gibbs was quite a character, but I didn’t have any problem with him whatsoever. Ask Rodney, and he’ll say he tried to kill him with his driving,” John nodded. “What team will Ziva be on?”

“Umm, I don’t have a set one yet for her. I was planning on having her join your team for the first few times off world as you might be the best candidate to show her the ropes around here. Make her feel more comfortable and all…Just don’t let me find out about you two doing – things – outside of your quarters or on duty…please,” she begged with an entertained smile.

“Sheez Carter, what do you take me for? A hormonal teen who desperately wants to do things whenever it wants to?”

Sam threw up her hands defensively. “I just have to go on record and say it officially. IOA orders. Blaim Woolsey.”

“Even Woolsey wouldn’t think that I’d do such a thing, I can’t help it that some of the members of the Destiny couldn’t keep it in their pants while evacuating.” He nodded, the story of the Destiny and its crew had of course reached Atlantis, much to everyone’s entertainment as McKay couldn’t keep his mouth shut. “Dawson’s Creek in Space” he called the situation.

“Neither could the crew of the Daedalus not more than five hours ago,” she pointed out.

“Nothing happened on the Daedalus.”

Carter just smiled, teasingly and dismissed him to go and help out Ziva again. He picked up some bottles of water on his way back and found Ziva standing in the middle of his quarters, knowing that she couldn’t possibly have been done yet with her unpacking but that curiosity got the best of her.

“Johnny Cash, above your bed, really?” She said, pointing at the poster. “It has to go!”

“No one touches the Cash.”

“Oh I will!” Ziva hopped on the bed and started to take the poster down.

“Hey!” John exclaimed as he ran after her to tackle her down to the bed.

She laughed as she had no intention of really removing it but the fact that she won by stirring up such as response out of him pleased her greatly. Yes, things were going to be quite exciting around Atlantis.

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