Chapter 2


The two co-workers sat close together within the darkened apartment. The storm continued to rage on from outside- and all had fallen quiet now ever since their planned movie had long been forgotten.

Neither of the two really cared for anything else at the moment though; except to be close to the other.

Ziva twitches slightly from where she sits curled into a ball on the couch. She practically had her head on Tony's chest now and this was the moment she had decided that she would tell him of her extreme dislike for thunder. She didn't exactly know how she'd put this- seeming, she hadn't shared this with anyone else before.

She sighs slowly. She did not want to disappoint her best friend and back out of this now. She needed to tell him. It was now or never...

If anyone would understand... It is Tony. She thinks to herself reassuringly.

She feels Tony's grip on her tighten as another loud roil of thunder comes raging from outside. She tenses before going to nestle towards him more.

She didn't like feeling this way- much less acting this way. But, she couldn't quite help herself when it came to thunder. This was different and she had her reasons for it.

Beside her, Tony shifts a bit so that he can turn to reach for some popcorn that he had made earlier. She watches intently as the man goes to sloppily throw some popcorn pieces into his mouth. He manages a few but misses two pieces- which roll down his chest and into his lap. This causes for Ziva to smile.

"Oops." He mutters, before going to reach for the bowl again.

She knew he was still waiting for her explanation as to why she didn't like the sounds of thunder.

She would not keep him waiting for much longer.

She finally sits up with another exhale before going to run a stressful hand through her curly hair. She needed to tell him.

"Tony..." She begins firmly, and the perky green eyes of DiNozzo comes to meet hers as he shoves some more popcorn into his mouth next.

"I'm listening, Zi. I am." Tony mumbles around his mouthful- and this causes for Ziva to give another smile at him. He was too funny sometimes...

"I... I am going to tell you why I do not like... thunder." She affirms to herself with a nod. Tony simply swallows his popcorn and smiles back at her comfortingly. "Alrighty then. Let's hear it." He states- in no efforts to rush her.

The Israeli casts her gaze to her hands as another rumble of thunder bursts from outside again. She feels herself jerk towards Tony within a matter of seconds, and instantly Tony's hands goes to wrap around her.

He didn't mind seeing her act this way; and he also didn't let this distaste for thunder lower his respect for the woman in any way.

He pulls her into his chest and instinctively without thinking, Ziva practically climbs into his lap- her eyes searching for nothing but his own.

Tony's mind almost reels and his smile quickly melts into a smirk at her newest position and he speedily starts to gain the urge to touch her again- but of course he doesn't.

The attractive Israeli woman was practically straddling him now- and it drove him crazy.

"S-So uh... you gonna tell me, or what?" He wheezes out his words as he feels himself harden from beneath her. Gosh, he couldn't help himself. Ziva only grins at him next- liking the effect she had on him. "Patience, my little furry bear." She leans into him enticingly before remembering the situation she was in and so she reverts to seriousness again. She pats his chest before speaking. "The reason... as to why I do not like thunder..." She pauses, and Tony now holds a ponderous expression.

There comes a long silence...

"It is because of my sister... Tali." Ziva finally finds her words at last- the explanation cutting into the quiet atmosphere around them like a knife would upon touching warm flesh. She automatically cringes out of pain for the name and she lowers her head mournfully; instantly she gains an intense feeling of coldness rush over her entire body. But... at least she had managed to say it.

Tony simply stares at her- nothing but the sounds of their breaths and the torrential rain sounding within the quiet and bleak world at the moment.

He blinks as his mind goes onto her sister, Tali.

Ziva had lost Tali to a Hamas suicide bombing when she was much younger. But he had come to understand just how close she had been with Tali.

It... already began to make sense and he hardly needed any further explanation for her resentment towards storms.

Nonetheless, Ziva went on- slowly. "When she was... well..." She picks her head up now and tries to not let her voice shake, but Tony knew it was hard for her as it were.

"The bombing. Thunder reminds me of... the sounds. The day I lost her. I..." She's finally had enough of words and so she casually trails off. She knew she had said enough and she knew that Tony would not press her for more. He understood. She could tell from the emotions swimming in his thoughtful eyes.

She leans for Tony again and desperately tries not to think about the situation. She wanted to escape the world as well as her own thoughts. She didn't like dwelling on matters such as this. She did not like remembering the day when her sister was taken from this world.

But yes... the thunder had a resembling rumbling noise to the bombing attack that had ruthlessly killed so many that day. Every time a horrible storm comes raging through D.C. now, Ziva would inevitably correspond thunder with the bombing from that very day.

It was awful.

Tony on the other hand, could completely understand what Ziva was going through now. He blinks at her and feels nothing but sympathy and compassion flood his emotions. He reaches for her next, and embraces his distressed partner. He holds her close- so close, that there is no longer any space between them.

He didn't like seeing his girl this way. She was always so tough and strong; both mentally and physically. It was extremely rare to see her like this.

He wanted to make her feel better. He wanted to make her feel like everything would be okay.

Within his arms, he feels Ziva start to twitch vigorously; her mind still woefully on her sister.

He clenches her tighter- his arms acting as a shield to the outside world for her. He'd make sure that nothing would ever happen to her.

Don't worry Ziva... I'm here... You won't ever be alone... You've got me... Ziva... His mind whirls with so many words he wanted to tell her. He didn't know which to pick

He needed to pick something though. He needed to do something, if anything instead of just sitting here for her!

He finally shifts as he feels her cringe some more from within his arms- her head practically lying right under the crook of his neck. She needed him, and he couldn't stand to see her this way.

He advances.

Without even thinking it through, Tony simply leans forward and plants a soft kiss atop Ziva's head- her beautiful and intoxicating scent filling his nostrils as his lips caresses her smooth skin- longing to stay attached to her in some way. When he finally pulls back however, this immediately causes for the Mossad assassin to slowly sit up. Her eyes snap onto his and she blinks at him with a yearning fondness- her quivering no longer distinguishable.

"Tony..." She breathes in quaint disbelief.

The two stare at each other for a few minutes before finally Ziva breaks a smile at her partner. She knew she had made the right decision in telling him of this... She didn't completely like being alone with her feelings and personal troubles. Sometimes it felt better to express herself to someone.

Tony brings a hand up and places it tenderly on her face next. He flashes his famous DiNozzo smile at her and brings their foreheads together again. "I understand Zi. It's alright."

Within the next second, lightning once again lights up the room- and suddenly this causes for Ziva's attention to be directed back onto the television screen. She gapes for a moment before turning her head. "Tony, your movie!" The memory comes flooding back. "I-I am sorry, we did not ever start it again..." She begins to lower her head out of blame for herself but Tony only raises his eyebrows and lifts her chin with his thumb.

"Hey. It's okay. Top Gun ain't going nowhere..." He chuckles as he begins picturing Tom Cruise flying off into the skies. Heck, at this rate, he'd probably just have to come back over tomorrow night to finish out the epic movie with his companion- which of course, he didn't mind one bit.

Ziva only smiles back thankfully before looking towards the windows yet again. She furrows her brows. "Well... It is getting late. Perhaps you should um... head home?" It pained her to even suggest such a thing- for she really felt like asking the man to stay. They hadn't even gotten to spend their night together like they had planned. No, instead, Ziva felt like she had made a fool of herself for interrupting their time together over a simple storm. They had completely gotten side-tracked and had forgotten to watch the movie...

Tony however, had other things in mind. He frowns incredulously at her.

"What? And leave you here all alone, during a storm? Not happening." He mutters. Ziva only frowns at this though. "I can take care of myself Tony. I am not afraid of a storm." She growls defensively. This is exactly what she did not want for him to think. She was most certainly not afraid of anything.

But still, Tony wouldn't budge.

"No way. I'm staying with you tonight. Besides, we might even be able to continue with our movie night? I mean, why not?" He flashes his teeth hopefully at her and she chuckles slightly. There was no way she'd continue arguing with him. Heck, she wanted him to stay anyhow...

"Alright, perhaps. Let me get back into my 'actual' seat then." Ziva playfully jokes as she finally slides out of Tony's lap and back into her spot on the couch. She grabs the blanket again and pulls it around her while casting her magnificent chocolate eyes at her staring partner.

Tony immediately feels the loss of her weight atop of him. He already wanted to scoop her back into his lap again... but he didn't persist. Having her at his side was enough... sort of.

He averts his gaze back to the television screen. "You sure you wanna continue movie night with me? Because, it's seriously okay if you don't." He needed to be sure that she was ready to move on from talking about something so personal and dear to her.

Ziva only nods vigorously though. "Yes, Tony. I am fine. And actually, this movie does not sound as bad as some of the other one's you have picked previously." She chuckles on the last bit of her sentence and Tony only glares at her- playfully of course though.

"Hey, every movie I pick is fantastic! They're all classics! The top hits! The-" He begins rambling about his good-taste in movies again but Ziva cuts him off. "Just start the movie DiNozzo!"

At the use of his last name, Tony cracks a smirk and gives a laugh. "One epic movie, comin' up!" He grabs the remote next and presses play before throwing another arm casually around his sweet-smelling partner.

She inches close to him as the movie finally begins- the opening credits starting with a thrill-seeker's theme song.

...

As the movie gets a few minutes in however, Tony soon starts to become distracted by his partner again.

He inhales deeply while trying to keep his eyes focused on the television screen. He loved watching Top Gun- he really did.

It was no use though. His eyes would always end up on her again- her gaze intrigued by the large fighter planes that were portrayed on screen now.

Tony shifts a bit from his position on the couch. He still couldn't wrap his brain around the fact that she had really opened up to him just now. Ziva was normally very reserved and private when it came to more personal things such as her family members. So, why would she feel the need to open up with someone like Tony DiNozzo?

Hmm... I guess thunder just isn't her thing. He sets a ponderous expression.

It made perfect sense to him though. He was now well-aware why his ninja despised the sounds of a raging thunderstorm. He didn't blame her.

Of course though, he also knew that she wasn't actually afraid of storms. She just didn't prefer them.

"Something wrong, My Dov?" It is then that Ziva's voice brings Tony back to reality and out of his thoughts. He blinks as he realizes he must have been caught staring at her.

"I-I... Uh, no." He looks at her and notices how her eyes are still casually glued to the T.V. screen. She was obviously using her ninja-skills to detect when she was being watched...

"Hm.. Okay." She shrugs as a slow grin crawls onto her lips next. "Then, why are you not enjoying the movie?" Her question hits Tony like a slap in the face and he tenses a bit.

"What?" His mind reels. "Me? Not enjoying Top Gun!?" He scoffs harshly before tightening his arm around his appealing colleague, and in turn this finally drags her attention from the movie. She looks at him with a mere glare.

"Tony, do not get too carried away yet. The movie has only just begun." She gestures towards his hand that was now dangerously close to her inner thigh before giving him a playful wink. She then returns her gaze back onto the screen nonchalantly again; leaving poor Tony merely baffled at her sudden mood change. She was now acting... beguiling.

This stirs Tony's senses inevitably and he bites his tongue in order to stop himself from touching her any farther. He knew it wasn't right. He knew she was literally taunting him to do it- seeing if he'd fall for it. And he knew that he would get into major trouble for even 'thinking' about wanting to touch her... But he couldn't help himself.

The glow from the television screen danced upon her warm olive skin, making her look all the more inviting. And the wordings on her sweatpants were still visible within the darkened atmosphere- 'Touch Me And Die' they read mockingly.

He frowns helplessly.

Nothing wasn't helping make this situation any easier.

One minute she acts all solemn and vulnerable with her dislike of thunder- and the next minute she's back to being compellingly playful again.

Man, is Ziva David an interesting woman.

Nonetheless, Tony enjoyed this attribute of her. He enjoyed their connection and greatly relished the fact that she considered him to be her trustworthy best friend. She wasn't just a mere partner of his. She was more. Far more.

Tony smirks to himself now as he slyly tries to inch closer towards her. She had already hooked him. She had sucked him into her little game; and he was ready and willing to play it with her...

As the movie continues with flashes of Tom Cruise up on the screen, Tony slowly attempts to place his large hands along Ziva's enticing hips- his mind desperately trying to stop himself all the while, but his male nature only drives him forward. He licks his lips and flexes the muscles in his hands.

Just as he is about to make contact with her though, there suddenly comes a blinding flash of lighting from outside- followed by an exceedingly loud burst of thunder.

Tony jerks back from what he is doing- as if literally caught red-handed within his dangerously daring attempt.

Ziva's eyes snap onto his; and all of time seemed to slow from there on.

The thunder roils and shakes the darkened apartment with a jerking rattle, and next there comes a loud ear-splitting boom which suddenly causes for the T.V. and dimmed lights to shut off abruptly- leaving both Tony and Ziva in total blackness.

Darkness overtakes all hints of light within mere seconds.

The two colleagues both falter with astonishment and surprise.

The power had gone out...

A/N: Hope you all enjoyed! I know, it's another cliff-hanger... Ah well. Do stick around if you want more fun Tony&Ziva! (And in the dark too) Haha

In case you don't know: Dov means bear in Hebrew.

*Any and all reviews are appreciated greatly! Encourages me to write more Tiva. Stay tuned for another chapter ahead!