The White House - thirteen days later
The Navy SEALs, Marines and NCIS agents did him proud on that day almost two weeks earlier. President Scott walked out to greet his latest heroes. They lined up in their suits and dress uniforms to receive their medal of valour for their country. There were no press present, the identities of these men and women who’d served their country at the risk of their own lives to keep their fellow citizens safe, would remain hidden. He knew that there had been more of them, some injured and some killed in their quest to protect this country.
“My dear fellow citizens of the United States of America. Today I have asked for you to be here to receive recognition from myself on behalf of your countrymen. You have done this nation proud, risking your lives in taking risks in secret operations to take down our enemies. I know from first hand the commitment that it takes to place your own life at risk for your country, but unlike the troops who are greeted home with parades, you will remain faceless and nameless heroes to our people because your job is not yet finished. But that doesn’t mean that your hard work and sacrifices do not go unnoticed.”
President Scott stepped forward and stood in front of Callen. In a low voice Jackson began. “Agent Callen. On behalf of the United States of America, I would like to apologise for the tough conditions that you endured throughout your childhood in the Foster Care system. No child or human being should be treated in such a way. I have put forward a bill to congress with regards to the information that has been passed onto me, to change the system and make all Foster families safe for all children.”
Callen swallowed the hard lump in his throat, slightly nodding his head unable to speak. To have the President publicly apologise to him, although it had been embarrassing, it had made the abuse that he’d suffered a little more bearable. And if it meant that no child will suffer like he had in the future, then his story being made known to the President was well worth it. He was thankful that the President had kept his voice low and was discreet when dealing with him. He was relieved that he had Sam and Alyssa on either side of him.
President Scott stepped back and addressed the men and women who were to be honoured.
“I know that there are more of you than who stand here before me today. The fallen, the injured and those who have been called for duty off shore. They will be remembered in like manner. I have a plaque for you, Agent Callen, in memory of the fallen.”
President Scott handed Agent Callen a plaque with the names of the fallen. There on top was his mother’s name, Clara Callen. Callen fought back the tears as he accepted the plaque, one that would be placed up in OSP in honour of those who’d fallen due to the Russians.
He handed the plaque to Alyssa, who also had lost someone dear to her. Steve Crawford’s name sat underneath Clara’s, along with the four CIA agents who’d died inside Arkady’s mansion. A monument was being erected on the grounds of the White House to honour them as well. But for those who had survived, for now they would remain nameless. Their identities could not be told today, but they would be honoured for their sacrifice when it came to the end of their life.
US Marines folded the American flag in it’s tradition and it was handed to Callen for his mother’s service to her country. Steve Crawford’s sons, Brent and Zac, received one for their father as well as the families of the four CIA agents who had been on Clara’s team and died at the hand of the Russian’s.
President Scott then began the medal ceremony. He started up at one end and made his way through the Federal Agents and their support staff, Navy SEALs and Marines. Finally he made it to Callen. It was weird for Callen to receive such a medal seeing he had no military background. As he watched Gibbs and Sam accept theirs, they did it in their stride. He was also aware that Gibbs kept his medals hidden and when he found the right moment, he gave his medals to someone he saw fit for the award. Callen bent his head forward and accepted the medal, the shiny silver medal felt heavier than he’d expected.
Deeks held Kensi’s hand, a big grin on his face as he accepted his medal of honour. He was now an NCIS agent and he was starting his new job on the following Monday in Los Angeles. News had spread on how NCIS and former CIA agents had taken down the largest plot of Russian infiltration inside their country and they had many marines and naval officers wanting to move into the NCIS agency. The list of new recruits from their young people had also increased from the news. Everyone wanted to do something worth while to help their country. It was times like this that brought its people together. Time at the new training centre was going to be busy for Deeks and his new team of trainers and analysts. But he was looking forward to the new chapter in his life. He also couldn’t wait for baby Deeks to arrive, to hold their child in his hands and kiss their forehead. Someone who belonged to the two of them. They also had a wedding to plan, deciding to have it as soon as possible, before their child arrived.
Nell and Eric stood awkwardly beside the others feeling less than deserving. Their medals as the President stood in front of them, were placed over their heads.
“I have been told that the two of you helped behind the scenes and if it wasn’t for what you achieved in a short period of time, we wouldn’t have been able to find all of these Russian sleeper agents and their associates. Your work is invaluable and like your fellow team members, you have made this country safe once again. Your country thanks you and you have been given a Medal of Service to the United States of America.
“Thank you, Mr President.” Nell and Eric looked at their medals feeling very much part of their team.
Amy Callen, now known as Judge Angela Frost stood at the end of the line, wondering why she was there. When President Scott arrived to where she was standing, she had a look of confusion on her face.
“Judge Frost. I would like to thank you for your integrity in your involvement of this operation. Our nation needs people like yourself to strive to keep our judicial system honest.” He handed her an award of scales representing the justice system.
Amy looked at the award and tears fell when she saw what was written on it.
This award of Honesty and Integrity has been presented to Judge Angela Frost of Kansas City, for her continual desire to help others and to keep our judicial system honest.
“Judge Frost, I would like to invite you to join the Supreme Court of the United States. I understand that although you grew up here in Washington D.C., your family now resides in Kansas City. I understand that you would need to speak with your husband before you make a decision.”
Amy looked at the President, shocked. “Thank you, Mr President. It would be an honour, Sir. But I haven’t done anything to deserve such a position.” She looked over at her adopted father, the confusion over such an invitation was written all over her face.
Jackson Scott smiled warmly to the Federal Court Judge. “That’s not what your colleagues have been telling me.” Jackson nodded his head and looked over to where Nikita Reznikov, the Russian KGB Major who had risked everything to do the right thing. He turned his attention back to Amy. “I can see where you and your brother have inherited your integrity and honesty from, Amy.” The use of her real name caught her off guard. Jackson’s smile widened. “I do my own background checks on the Justices of whom I wish to work with me in the Supreme Court. Mark Burton has gone beyond what many would for their partner’s child. I only wish your brother had the same opportunity as yourself. However, I must say, between what I have learned about you and your brother, I am more than impressed. You’re mother would have been very proud of the both of you.”
Amy shook President Scott’s hand. “Thank you, Mr President.”
They were all invited to a celebratory dinner at the White House where the team gathered and reminisced their tales of what they’d been through in order to protect Nikita Reznikov. It had been well worth the sacrifices, seeing Callen reunited with his family, but especially the information that Nikita had given them had saved their country from destruction.
Jackson Scott sat with Leon and raised his glass. “To you and your people, Leon. They are great men and women. President Feliks Kovalsky has agreed to our terms of extradition of his people who orchestrated this act against our nation. I have arranged for some of my men in the Secret Service to bring them to Washington for their trials.”
“That is good news, Mr President.” Leon looked over and saw his people happy. It was a good sight to see after all that they had gone through.
“What about the Russians, Nikita and Maxim Reznikov?”
Scott looked over at the two brothers, the younger was quieter, but from what he’d been told he was lucky to be alive.
“I’ve granted them full immunity and full citizenship right here in the U.S. I have also asked them to choose their new identities. Nikita seems rather attached to the one he’s been using and his brother appears to be happy to become Daniel’s brother, Matthew.”
Leon smiled in return. “That is very good news indeed.”
Callen stood amongst his family and team. He raised his glass. “To my family. Whether you’ve been my family through blood or fire, you are all my family. I wouldn’t be alive today without your support and protection. Thank you.”
“To family.” They all raised their glasses and took a sip. Kensi placed her’s down and moved in closer to Deeks. A small bump had formed and she was being careful not to do anything to harm her unborn child.
Callen slid his arm around Alyssa’s waist, he was happy to have her back safe with him and he couldn’t wait to return home and be with their daughter. He led her out onto the balcony, after all they’d suffered due to the Russians trying to get to his father, they’d had little time to be a normal married couple.
“How does a week away in the Chilcotin Mountains, just the two of us for a proper honeymoon sound? We can stay at the Tyax Mountain Resort on shores of Tyaughton Lake. Go canoeing, hiking, horse riding, soak in a spa, fly in one of those sea planes and look for black bears.”
“Gale, it sounds too good to be true. Can we afford it?”
A smile edge on Callen’s lips. “For you, anything.” He captured her lips with his and the world around them dissolved as the stars sparkled in the night sky.