Hetty was already awake as the phone rang.
She had been expecting a call tonight after the events of the day, but she wasn't expecting the person on the other end.
"Mr. Deeks...I assume you need to talk." She said without looking at the caller id on her phone.
"It's not Deeks." Callen said.
Hetty admonished herself for assuming that it would be him, but didn't miss a beat. "Ah Mr. Callen...can't sleep?" she asked.
"When do I ever?" Hetty swore she could hear her Agent smirk down the phone.
"True, true, Mr. Callen...So tell me what is keeping both you, and by extension me, up at…." She looked at the clock, "Two a.m. in the morning."
"I've been thinking…" Callen said unsure how to tell her. "Something is wrong with Deeks… I mean he's not hurt or compromised, nothing like that." He added hastily.
"Mr. Deeks will be alright, he just needs some time to gather his...thoughts, together." Hetty advised.
"You know what is wrong with him don't you." It was not a question as Callen was certain that Hetty knew about whatever it was that was bothering Deeks.
"Tell me Mr. Callen, what makes you think there is something wrong with Mr. Deeks?" She asked.
Callen sighed and Hetty could almost see him leaning back in the chair in his barely furnished house.
"Mr. Callen?" She pushed in the same tone she had used on him as a teenager when he had first come to live with her and hadn't wanted to talk.
Callen sighed again, "I swear...we were doing it for his own good. His head wasn't in the game and we didn't want….we wanted him to…"
"Sam decided we should...test him...I mean we didn't want another Dom…" He let the implication hang in the air.
Hetty caught it and her gut clenched with worry.
"What. Did. You. Do?" She asked quietly punctuating each word.
"We followed him. He didn't notice, we could have been anyone and he went down an alley and Sam jumped him and…."
Hetty's sharp intake of breath halted his tirade.
"Is Mr. Hanna in hospital?" she asked worry dripping from her tone.
"Sam?" Callen sounded confused. "Sam's fine, Deeks is fine too, but there was a scuffle."
"Which I assume resulted in your broken nose."
Callen gingerly touched his face, "How?"
"You sound nasally Mr. Callen, and this is not the first time we have had a phone conversation and you've had a broken nose." she reminded him.
Callen smiled and winced.
"There are painkillers in your medicine cabinet." She told him.
"There are?" Callen sounded surprised.
"And there is healthy food in your refrigerator, you forgot to go shopping for food and you eat too much junk."
In spite of himself Callen smiled. He would never admit it but he loved it when she went all maternal on him. It was a nice reminder that someone cared for him. It sent his thoughts back to the blonde haired woman at the shelter.
"Do you know a Jessica Bates?"
Hetty smiled although Callen couldn't see.
"Jessica Bates is a remarkable woman, she runs the New Hope Shelter in Reseda."
"Is she Deeks' foster mother?" He asked.
"No." Hetty replied, "Mr. Deeks was only fostered out once, it didn't go very well for him."
Callen waited, hoping she would explain.
"It is not my story to tell Mr. Callen, perhaps if we could get Mr. Deeks and Ms, Bates to come to the boatshed tomorrow, Mr. Deeks might open up, although I do not think it will be an easy task. However I think for Mr. Deeks it may be a cathartic experience and a learning one for both you and Mr. Hanna." She replied.
She replaced the receiver on her phone and sighed, she would need to be in early and see if Eric could pull the footage down of the altercation in the alleyway. It was about time that Mr. Deeks asked for help. Maybe an intervention would be a good thing, not only for Deeks but for Sam as well.
She sighed as she looked over at the clock, 2.20am. There were rules in place for a reason and although her agents functioned best with a bit of leeway they needed to realize that respecting one another as agents was an important part of being a team.
It was still early as Deeks pulled up to the mission, the bags under his eyes testament to the fact he hadn't slept. Even Monty couldn't help him relax enough to sleep. The dog dutifully followed his master into the mission after fussing that morning to be able to go with him and Deeks too tired to argue with his dog, just allowed him to come along.
He was pleased that the others hadn't gotten there yet, he wasn't in the mood for the questions he knew would be coming from Sam and Callen, besides he still hadn't decided what he was going to do about their betrayal last night.
He sat at his desk for a moment and looked over at Kensi's desk, she hadn't been with them but did she know?
He thought back to the happier times he had had with the group. But a black cloud seemed to envelope his thoughts, memories of Sam, Kensi and Callen at times poking fun at him.
Sam's jibes about him being unprofessional and not wanting him to look after his kids. Kensi forgetting his birthday, and going out on a date with Jaime instead. Callen...his team leader...along with Sam making fun of the injuries he had received, just over a year ago by wearing false teeth and Sam throwing mechanical false teeth at him.
He should have taken the hint, he should have left then, but he brought into their lie that he was one of the team.
He wasn't and he knew it.
He was the comic relief.
He stood up, Monty following dutifully behind as he walked out to the gym, he knew there were a few empty offices back there and there should be a box big enough to put all his stuff in. As he walked past his eyes strayed to the box on the shelf. Kensi had given it to him, she told him it contained the one thing he always wanted. He had refused to open it as he knew it didn't contain the one thing he always wanted. That was his teammates trust and respect. You couldn't put that in a box.
He grabbed a box and headed back to the bullpen.
"So I called her, and she was expecting a call from Deeks." Callen's voice floated down the corridor.
Deeks pulled up, who was he talking about.
"Deeks calls Hetty?" Sam's voice was heard replying.
"You think she knows what is going on with him. I mean he was totally out of line yesterday." Sam ranted.
Deeks nearly dropped the box in shock, they had attacked him and he was out of line?
"Sam." Callen started and he got cut off.
"G...Deeks attacked us, we were only teaching him to be aware of his surroundings. He should have apologised as soon as he found out it was us. I mean, he should know that we are going to keep him on his toes, his LAPD self defense just isn't going to cut it."
Deeks sighed, now he knew what to do.
Walking around the corner he dropped the box on the desk, reaching into his drawer to get a biscuit for Monty he started putting things in the box.
"Deeks…" Callen started.
Deeks took two letters out of his bag, he had written them last night but when he had entered this morning he hadn't thought he would need to use them.
"Agent Callen." Deeks handed him the letter and then, without a word, he walked to Hetty's office.
Hetty was sat at her desk and watched as Deeks with a pained look on his face came around the corner handed Callen an envelope and headed in her direction.
"Bugger." She swore.
"Mr. Deeks. Do not give me that right now, I have an assignment for you. We have a witness in the boatshed that needs protection."
"I can't Hetty, I need to do this…"
Hetty stood up and stepped back not wanting to touch the letter.
Deeks turned to go back to his desk.
"Very well...Mr. Callen would you and Mr. Hanna head to the boatshed, you need to question a Jessica Bates from the New Hope Shelter…." She stopped as Deeks whirled around.
"Jess? Is she ok? What happened?"
"NCIS business Mr. Deeks. I assume you'll be heading back to the LAPD now."
Deeks snatched the letter of Hetty's desk and ripped it up, "I haven't left Hetty, I need to go and see if she's alright."
Kensi walking into the building looked worried at Deeks' agitation. "Deeks, what's wrong."
"Witness boat-shed." He replied as he grabbed his bag and the dog and headed to the car.
Callen looked over at Hetty as Deeks left with Kensi hot on his heels, he walked over in her direction.
"I don't know what you are up to but are you sure this is a good idea?" He asked.
"Mr. Callen, either this will work and your partner will realize what I see in Mr. Deeks and both of them will be helped by this. Or we are in a lot of trouble."
Callen leaned against the post that held up the inner roof to her office.
"Oh bugger." He sighed and hoped to God she knew what she was was doing.
Kensi followed Deeks' car, he hadn't even stopped to wait for her.
He ran two red lights, nearly avoiding a collision which had Eric's heart in his throat as he watched the detective's journey to the boat-shed, relaying the information to Hetty and the others who were following more sedately behind.
He jumped out, remembering to let Monty out behind him.
"MA!" He called as he ran into the boat-shed.
He screeched to a halt as Jessica looked up at him from the main table. The Agent with her moved to let Deeks have some privacy.
"What happened? Hetty said you were a witness and needed protection….Are you hurt?" he asked looking at her to see if there were any signs of injury.
Jess smiled up at him.
"I'm fine, but Hetty's right there was an incident last night that needs to be addressed, I was a witness to some of it and offered to help."
"What happened?" Deeks sat next to her and held her hand.
"Someone I care about was hurt, he was in pain and needed help, but instead of helping he was attacked and he still needs help." She let a tear fall.
Deeks held her hand a bit tighter.
"It's ok Ma, I'll find him and we'll help. If anyone can help it's Hetty and the team. Who was it...Pete? Jack? someone new at the shelter, a kid?"
Jess shook her head as the others entered the boat-shed behind him.
"It was someone much more important to me."
Deeks looked confused as he tried to figure out who had been hurt.
"Who, just tell me. I'll keep you safe and we'll help whoever it is that needs it." he promised.
"It was you." Jess said simply.
Deeks dropped her hand and stood up, "Me? I'm not hurt, I'm fine?"
Hetty stood between him and the door.
"Mr. Deeks you are not fine, you were attacked, you attacked two federal agents. This needs to be resolved." Hetty told him.
Kensi's sharp intake of breath was all Marty needed to know that she hadn't been a part of yesterday's' attack.
"I tried to resolve it, you wouldn't let me." Deeks snapped.
Hetty smiled, "That. Mr. Deeks, was running away not solving the problem."
"There is no problem, just let me go…." Deeks started to pace as his fight or flight response kicked in.
"Marty...please, sweetie, let them help you." Jess pleaded.
Sam and Callen entered the boat-shed.
Deeks froze as Sam walked in the door. He shot a panicked look at Hetty.
He couldn't do this….
His hands started to get sweaty and his heart rate kicked up a notch and he started to pace.
His eyes darted around the room as he felt trapped, he needed air….He needed the ocean, a place to calm the turbulent waters of his soul. He couldn't talk about this, they couldn't know. They already thought he was second best on the team, if they knew how this was his fault...how she had died because he had broken his promise, he had let her down. They would never trust him again.
He grinned and held his arms wide, "You really didn't need to throw me a party, I mean it's not even my birthday." he quipped as he sidled closer to the door.
Sam knew that Deeks was to stay here, but he could see Deeks was trying to leave.
He reached out and touched him on the shoulder.
"Deeks wait!" he said.