The Jock and the Coed
AU Tony is a star basketball player who hires Ziva to tutor him so he can keep his eligibility.
Chapter 1 - Mid-October
Tony DiNozzo hurried past the three women who were sitting in the lobby of the gym as he rushed to meet with his coach. Coach had called his dorm room and requested his presence ASAP. He glanced in the direction of the women out of curiosity.
A busty blonde, a well-proportioned red-head, both with pretty enough faces, and a brunette with a braid dangling almost to mid-back and nicely curved hips; the trifecta of perfection possibly. He made a mental note to check the three out after his meeting with Coach.
“DiNozzo, have a seat,” Coach scowled at his star player. Tony sat on one of the folding chairs opposite Coach’s desk. He noticed the scowl and shifted uncomfortably in his seat. Now what?
“Midterm grades have been posted,” the man frowned as he looked at the computer monitor. “Have you seen your grades yet?”
“Um… no,” Tony swallowed hard. “But I’m pretty sure I’m passing everything…” he trailed off as Coach shook his head.
“You have three Fs and two Ds; how the hell do you get a D in physical training?”
“I um, I… Wait, three Fs?”
“Yep; Statistics, Spanish, and Human Sexuality… the other D…” Coach gave his star player a disbelieving look.
Tony held up his hands, “I can do better, Coach. I promise. And it’s only midterm, those grades don’t count; I can get them up to at least Cs by final grades.”
“You better,” Coach growled. “That’s why I have some potential tutors lined up for you. Come with me.” He motioned for Tony to follow him to the lobby.
“Ladies,” the coach greeted the three women Tony had rushed past. “This is Tony DiNozzo, starting center for the basketball team. He needs some academic tutoring to get his grades up to maintain his eligibility to play.”
The three women looked at Tony as Coach spoke; the blonde openly flirted with the handsome player. The red-head gave him the once over with a frown. The brunette just gazed at his face and they locked eyes. There was something about her that drew him to her.
“Tony, this is… DiNOZZO!” Coach tried to get his player’s attention; the young man’s eyes were locked on the brunette’s chocolate orbs. He raised a hand and slapped it against the back of the man’s head.
“Um, yeah, Coach?” Tony broke the gaze unwillingly.
“This is Maggie Simmons, she can tutor you in your English lit class,” he pointed to the blonde who again openly flirted with the good-looking player. “Anne Hope, who can tutor you in Spanish or statistics,” he pointed to the red-head. “And Ziva David…”
“I can help with all of your classes,” the brunette interjected. “I speak Spanish as one of seven languages in which I am fluent; I have an A+ in advanced statistical theory; I am in your Human Sexuality class.”
Tony looked over the other two just to be polite; he’d already decided to choose the brunette even before she’d listed her credentials. “I want her,” he locked gazes with the woman again as he gestured in her direction.
“Okay then; thank you Maggie and Anne,” Coach turned to the other two.
Maggie brushed against Tony as she left, “Too bad, stud; you could-a got some hands on if you get my drift.” She spoke quietly so that only Tony could have heard her, but he was so engrossed in the brunette that he was oblivious to the blonde.
Coach handed file folder with a stack of forms to Ziva, “Miss David, fill this out and return one to me each week. That is your report of hours so we can make sure you get paid properly. I’ll leave you two to work out a schedule. DiNozzo, BEHAVE!” With that he tapped the back of Tony’s head again and walked off.
Tony grinned at Ziva, “Pleased to meet you, Ziva. Are you from around here?”
She nearly melted at the grin on his face, but she steeled herself to the draw that was pulling her into his emerald green eyes. “I am from Israel; my father sent me here to get a good education. You?”
“I grew up in various places around New York City,” he replied, hoping she wouldn’t press for details. “What’s your major? Mine’s physical education… “
“International studies with a minor in linguistics. Now, about scheduling our tutoring sessions,” Ziva tried to keep the conversation strictly business despite the attraction she felt to the handsome athlete. “What is your class schedule?” She pulled a day-planner out of her backpack and a pen from one of the outside pockets.
“How about we get some lunch and make a plan over food?” he suggested as it was nearly noon. His stomach growled and reminded him that he’d not had breakfast that morning.
Ziva hesitated but when she glanced at his smile and puppy eyes, she could not say no. “Okay, but I get to choose the place.” He nodded and she responded, “We shall go to the salad bar and sandwich shop by the main bookstore.” She stuffed her planner back in her pack and put her pen in her jacket pocket.
The pair walked side by side talking about the weather, basketball, and classes in general. Both were somewhat surprised at the ease of conversation between them even though they’d just met. Tony held the door for her at the food shop.
“Toda,” she smiled at him and his insides fluttered.
“Prego,” he grinned back at her and she nearly melted into a puddle.
Tony paid for two beverages and two all-you-can-eat specials, which included unlimited trips to the salad and sandwich bars. Ziva led him to a small booth near the back of the shop, slightly away from most of the other diners.
“I like this booth because one can observe the people from here without being too obvious,” she explained.
“Works for me,” he looked around, noticing that the booth had two seats against the wall facing the rest of the eatery and one much smaller seat on the opposite side of the table. He placed her backpack on the small seat and grinned at her. “May as well get used to sitting side by side since you’ll be tutoring me.”
Ziva nodded and smiled, trying not to let him see how his smile made her insides do some sort of flippy thing. Why he had this effect on her she did not know. Not that it really bothered her, but her father had made it very clear that she was not at the university to socialize.
“You go get your food, and I’ll stay here with your bag,” Tony offered. “Then when you come back, I’ll go get my food.”
“Toda,” she headed to the salad bar to make her selections. When she brought her plate of food to the table, he stood up and allowed her to slide in towards the window. He headed to the bars to get himself some food. He returned with two plates of food, including two sandwiches.
They ate in companionable silence, exchanging glances and smiles. Tony tried not to stare into the Israeli’s chocolate brown eyes; they mesmerized him and drew him in. Ziva felt the pull of the emerald green eyes that met her gaze; she could get lost in them.
After they finished the meal, the two planned the first week of tutoring sessions. Their schedules meshed well and they were able to block out at least an hour per day between their last classes each day and Tony’s practice sessions. Tony wrote his dorm room phone number on the page of Ziva’s planner next to his name in the first scheduled session. Ziva tore a page from her assignments book and wrote her name and dorm phone number for him.
“Which dorm are you in?” he asked as he folded that paper and stuck it in his wallet.
“Barresi Hall; you?” she replied.
“Reimer Hall, right next door!” he exclaimed. “Let me walk you back?”
Ziva agreed and the two strolled back to their adjacent dorms; the dorm for the athletes and the honors students’ dorm. They lingered in the small area between the dorms, neither one wanting to break the contact. Finally Ziva turned towards her dorm.
“I will see you tomorrow after Human Sexuality; wait for me if you leave the room before I do,” she reminded him.
“Yeah; see you soon,” he watched her walk into the dorm and then entered his own building. He glanced over at the other building as he climbed the stairs to his floor; twice he saw her on the parallel stairway and waved. She grinned and waved back.
He was so engrossed in watching her that he nearly collided with the captain of the football team.
“Watch where you’re going, DiNozzo,” Ty growled. He noticed the girl in the other building when she waved. “That your new girlfriend?”
“Huh? Oh, no, she’s gonna tutor me for the rest of the term,” Tony took a step back from the larger man.
Ty smirked, “You do know about her, right?” At Tony’s confused look, Ty continued, “Her daddy is the head of security for the Israeli embassy in DC. Big shot within Mossad, or so the rumor has it. She’s off-limits or so it’s said. Daddy David sends his goons to ‘talk’ to the fool who tries to date her.”
“Oh; well then it’s good that she’s just my tutor,” Tony tried to get around Ty.
“Just be careful, DiNozzo; we don’t need no dead jocks around here.”
Over in the other dorm, Ziva continued to climb the stairs to her floor. She looked for Tony at every landing with a window. She nearly collided with the president of the campus honor society.
“Watch it David; gotta pay attention to where you’re going or you’re liable to get hurt,” Sydney looked at the Israeli. She really did not like the girl; too smart for her own good and damn good-looking. In other words, competition.
“Sorry,” Ziva lowered her face. “I did not mean to…”
“You were watching the jocks’ dorm; who’s the guy?” Sydney peered out the window and saw Tony waving. “DiNozzo? You gotta be freaking kidding!”
“You really don’t know?” Ziva shook her head so Sydney continued. “His father is rumored to be the head of the second largest crime family in New York. Daddy DiNozzo bought his son a place on the basketball team. Rumor is that junior is really slick. Wines and dines a girl and then when he finally gets her in bed, drops her like a hot potato.”
Ziva huffed, “Well then, it is a good thing that I am just his tutor.”
“Yeah, uh-huh. I saw how you looked at him; be careful David that you don’t get your heart broken.” Sydney turned and continued on her way leaving Ziva to stare at the empty stairwell in the other building.
The following day, Tony arrived at the Human Sexuality class after Ziva; he made his way to the empty seat on her left grinning at her as he sat down.
“Hi,” he greeted her. “This seat taken?”
She smiled back, “Now it is!”