Monday, August 19, 2013

Shards To A Whole: Chapter 181

McGee-centric character study/romance. Want to start at the beginning? Click here.

Chapter 181: It's A...

Once again, they're sitting next to the ultrasound machine, waiting for the tech to show up and start taking pictures.

It's the third time, so it's starting to get a little routine, but there's also the buzz of excitement that comes with finding out if Kelly really is a girl.

"You know, we're gonna feel silly if Kelly's a boy," Tim says, holding Abby's hand, looking at the currently blanks screen.

"You might. I won't."

"Okay. What are we calling him if he's not a girl?" They've been so certain that Kelly's a girl they haven't even talked about boys names.

She thinks about that as they wait for the ultrasound tech. "Not Tony."

Yeah, he can get behind that. Maybe as a middle name, but not a first name. Tony McGee, no matter how much he loves DiNozzo just sounds bad. "Definitely not Tony."

"Sean?" Abby asks.

He thinks about that. "Sean McGee is really Irish."

"Is that bad?" Abby's noticed that Tim doesn't identify as Irish. He's just American. But she's never dug deep enough to know if it's part of him not being his Dad, or if, like the Sciutos weren't Italian in any meaningful sense, the McGees weren't Irish.

"No. Just pointing it out. I kind of like it. Sean James…" He lets that roll around in his mind for a second, the image of a little boy with sandy blonde hair and green eyes clicking with that name.

"Sean James McGee sounds really good," Abby says, and he's thinking she's probably got a pretty similar image in her mind.


Then the tech came in, and discussion of what Kelly might be called if there was indeed a penis stopped.

And once again they watched as different features revealed themselves. Heart first, thrumming away, strong and steady; veins and arteries doing the jobs they were built for. Liver, kidneys, lungs and brain all looked good. Arms, legs, hands, feet, fingers and toes were all accounted for.

And two minutes later, possible boys names became an entirely moot point as the tech says, "No testicles, that's a little girl."

Gibbs was staring at the ultrasound picture. They'd headed over to his place after work, wanting to show it to him first, and ask him a serious question. Sure, they'd been calling her Kelly when they were alone together, but now was the time to find out if they could keep that name.

For a few minutes, he just looked at the picture. Sure he's seen ultrasounds of babies and they all look pretty much the same, but this is his little girl, so that adds to it. Doesn't matter that he couldn't pick her out from a collection of other ultrasounds unless he could see the McGee on the upper left corner, it's his girl, and that's what matters.

Abby was sitting next to him on the sofa, leaning her head into his shoulder, (he has his arm around her) looking at the picture with him. Then she started the question. "She's a girl, and we were wondering... Well, Tim was wondering... I was going to just go ahead and do it... But he wanted to make sure it was okay..." Tim notices her eyes are tearing up, and she's putting more and more phrases between now and the actual question, so he squeezes her hand and takes over.

"We'd like to call her Kelly, but we also wanted to make sure it'd be okay with you."

Gibbs smiles, eyes warm, looking at the black and white image in front of him, fingers lightly stroking the tiny white hand on the picture. "Yeah, it's okay."

Abby took Gibbs' hand in hers. "We'd also like you to think about what you want her to call you. Gibbs or Jethro is fine if you like it, but Grandpa or Pop, which was what Tim called his grandfather, or if there's something you really liked, something you imagined your grandkids calling you, that would be even better."

The smile on Gibbs' face grew even wider. He kissed the top of Abby's head before looking at Tim and saying, "I like Pop."

They were on the way home, having grabbed a quick dinner and Abby's maid of honor dress, when Abby said, "Kelly what McGee."

"Huh?" Tim wasn't really paying attention, he was merging into traffic, and an idiot in a blue Suburban kept trying to stay exactly in his blind spot.

Abby can see he's focused on the road, so she waits for him to get into the lane he's aiming for before saying, "Middle name. You whipped James out to go along with Sean in like three seconds flat. What goes with Kelly?"

"Uh…" Tim's drawing a blank. Kelly Ziva doesn't sound right to him. Kelly Sarah.. not bad, but he's already got four Sarahs in his family. "Does something have to go with it? I don't have a middle name."

"Nope. But most people have them, usually honoring family or something like that. Like, you know, whipping James out nine seconds after Sean."

"About half of that is honoring Jimmy. A quarter is that James sounds really good with Sean. The other quarter is that Jethro's names are pretty awful so I'm not saddling any boys we have with them."

"Gibbs' names are fine!" Abby looks appalled that Tim would insult Leroy or Jethro.

"Says the woman who only refers to him by last name." And yeah, he loves Gibbs, but well, there are family names and family names, and if someone you love has a god-awful name, you find another way to honor them, like naming your kid after their kid.

Abby sticks her tongue out at him.

"Okay, fine, his names are great," lots of dry sarcasm on that, "for the 1950s. When have you met a Leroy or Jethro that was under fifty?"


"And you know everyone on the eastern seaboard. So, what do you like for a middle name?"

"I don't know. Elizabeth?"

"Kelly Elizabeth McGee… Not bad. Not in love with it, but it's not bad. Anne?"

"That's Breena and Jimmy's number two girl name."

Tim tapped his fingers on the steering wheel. "So you're thinking we shouldn't snag it and leave them looking for a new one?"

"Yeah. With any luck they'll be having a conversation pretty similar to this real soon. Something fiction-y? What girl characters do you love?"

"You mean, besides the ones I've written?"

"Yeah, I do not want Amy, Lisa, or Gail to show up on the list."

"Okay… Willow, Fred, Zoe, Kaylee…"

"Whedon-verse, good first pick. No on Fred or Kaylee."

"I know, I'm just going through the list. And really Kelly Willow doesn't work, either." He glances to the left, the lane is clear, shifts over, and speeds up a little.

"Yeah, not good. Kelly Zoe is too many ee sounds."

"How about you, what girls characters do you love?"

Abby sighs and pets her belly. "Do we need to have that argument about the lack of awesome female characters in the kinds of things I like to read or watch again?"

"No." They'd gotten into a pretty heated argument about whether there were or were not any good strong female characters in recent fiction, with Abby claiming they were horribly rare and Tim saying they were all over the place if you just looked. It wasn't pretty. And probably wouldn't have been nearly as passionate had she not been hopped up on pregnancy hormones or he a writer. The makeup sex was fun, though. "Just, kind of annoying to be told there are no strong female characters out there when every single thing I write has them."

"I know. How about that series you gave me a while back… Autumn. I like her."

"Autumn was a psychopath, and the villain."

"Yeah, but she had a lot of style."

"Because she was a Fairy. Style is sort of a racial trait, what with the whole glamour thing. How about Claire? She was cool."

"Claire was cold. And Kelly Claire McGee… nope. I liked Sarah, too. She certainly fit the kick-ass, take-names strong female mold."

"I was thinking about that. Naming her after my sister is fine, but I've already got four Sarahs in my family. Probably don't need a fifth."

"Good point."


"Yeah, I'm good with an out there name, but maybe not that far out."

"Leia? Queen of the kick-ass female heroes?"

"Kelly Leia McGee… Eh. Kelly's a really normal name… something too far out on the middle name isn't going to work."

"Probably right. We've got time. Don't need one tonight," he says as he pulls into their driveway. "Really, we don't need one at all. I like Kelly McGee."

"Unless we can find something we both love, we'll skip the middle name." She thinks about that for a moment as they walk in. Timothy McGee… Something was missing there. "Tim, why don't you have a confirmation name? Everyone else I know who got confirmed has one."

He slouches a little, tilting his head to the side and sighing. "I have one. It's just… kind of silly and embarrassing."

"Worse than Teresa?" Abby asks as she sits on the bottom step to take her boots off.

"Teresa is cool. Lots of good Teresas. Which one were you thinking of?"

"The mystic."

He laughs at that, approving. "And I am less than shocked. She ran a convent, and went into ecstatic trances, and was a major player theologically, right?"

"And wrote music and poetry too."

"That's not dumb at all." He unzips his coat and hangs it up. Then holds out his hand for Abby's coat.

"So what was yours?"


She stops in the middle of taking her coat off and looks at him. "Why would you think that's silly or embarrassing?"

"Probably because these days all anyone knows is the Mutant Ninja Turtle."

Abby smiles at that, handing him her coat. "So, which one was he?"

"The sulky one with the sais."

She adds a little roll of her eyes to go with the smile. "Which angel? I know he's one of the big ones, but I besides Michael being the warrior, I don't remember which ones do what."

"The healer. I still thought I was going to be a surgeon then."

"Then it's a great name."

He thinks about that for a bit while kicking his shoes into the closet. "My dad didn't like it. He never went full out on me for it, maybe because I was seven. Maybe because he was sure I'd actually tell the priest who ran the confirmation class why I'd suddenly decided to change it. So he was just disdainful of it, and really talked up Nicholas and Brendan."

"Why those two?"

"Patron saints of sailors. But Penny and my mom really liked Raphael. And I really liked MASH, thought being a trauma surgeon would be the best thing ever. And since Father Sam kindly told me that no, there was no Saint Hawkeye or BJ, I went with Raphael."

Abby's nodding. "It's a good name."


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