Arriving at the restaurant, Ellie checked her phone to see that Nick would be late so she made her way to the bar to wait on him. Gibbs decided to make him finish the remaining paperwork for the day and, because their relationship was still a secret, Nick couldn’t use their date night as a reason to leave early. Thanking the bartender for the glass of wine that was placed in front of her she took a sip and sighed. They had started dating a month ago and both agreed that they wanted to keep it between them for now, wanting to prove to Gibbs and Vance that they could be together and still be partners. Unfortunately that also meant that sometimes one or the other was stuck late at the office, forcing them to cancel or postpone dates. Lost in thought, she missed the movement of someone sitting on the stool next to hers.
“Hey, can I buy you a drink?” Glancing at her newest bar companion, Ellie mentally rolled her eyes and picked up her wine.
“I’m good, thanks.” The guy leaned over, his shoulder brushing hers and she felt a shiver run down her spine as his eyes roamed over her.
“Ah, come on babe. I’ll make it worth your while.” His hand landed on her knee then and she scooted back on her stool. He clearly wasn’t taking the hint.
“Uh, not interested, thank you .” Turning back toward the bar she waved the bartender down for her tab. As soon as the bartender walked away she went to pull out her ringing phone when a hand was suddenly gripping her thigh tight.
“Listen here blondie. You’re gonna let me buy you a drink and then take you home and have a good time.” Shocked, Ellie went to push him away and stand up.
“I said no! Now leave me alone!” One second the man’s hand was wrapped around her arm as she tried to step away and the next a body was between them, pushing the man away. Leaning against the stool, she watched as Nick had the guy pinned against the bar, his hands behind his back. She could only imagine what Nick whispered to the guy when she saw his shocked expression before being let up and scurrying away. Trying to catch her breath, Ellie looked at Nick. She was speechless as he turned to her, his eyes going from heated and full of anger to warm and loving in a second and she marveled at the wonderful man in front of her. Still stunned at tonight’s events, she missed his first words but was brought back to the present when his hands landed on her shoulders.
“You okay babe?”
“Y-yeah. All good.” Her breath was still coming out shakily and she was ready to collapse into the stool behind her when Nick pulled her into his arms, cupping the back of her head as he held her tight. She immediately wrapped her arms around him and buried her face in his neck, breathing in his comforting scent.
Ellie’s breath was coming out shakily and he pulled her into his arms, cupping the back of her head as he held her.
“I’m sorry I was late. If I wasn’t that wouldn’t have happened and-” She put a hand on his chest, wanting to comfort him like he had her.
“Hey, it’s okay. This wasn’t your fault Nick.” She pulled back, looking into his eyes to reassure him. It took a second for her words to sink in but she could tell the moment they did.
“How about we get our food to go hmm? Eat at your place and watch a movie?” Pretending to think about it, she tilted her head and brought a finger to her lips. “We can get some ice cream…” A smile crossed her face and she pressed a kiss to his cheek when she heard talk of dessert.
“Sounds amazing.” Smiling at him again, she snuggled into his side as he wrapped his arm around her waist. Nick grabbed her purse, carrying it for her leaving her other hand free to lace with his as he led them out of the restaurant.
Too focused on each other, both missed the shocked looks on the faces of the four customers across the restaurant.