I Don't Want You Here!
"I don't want you here!"
He stood for a second in shock as his team leader; the man on the team who he had admired said those words.
"I don't want you here!" Callen said again looking him straight in the face.
He had said something after that, but admittedly Deeks hadn't been listening after that point.
Sam he had expected it from…Sam didn't trust him, he knew. Ok, so he didn't really trust Sam that much; Sam was built like a brick outhouse and he knew what that kind of raw power could do to a person if it was unleashed wrongly.
He had made it his mantra to stay out of arm's reach whenever Sam got mad.
He would laugh and joke around him hoping to diffuse any residual anger Sam was carrying where he could.
But Callen…Callen had a similar past to his, Callen should have known how much those words would hurt and yet he had said them anyway and by the look in his eyes he had meant them.
Deeks nodded once not letting any of the turmoil he was feeling show and walked to his desk. He finished up his day and went home.
Over the next few weeks he did his job, he realized he had problems he was moody and irritable, but as his father had always said, only a baby whines when he hurts. So he sucked it up and quietly got on with his job.
He interacted with Callen and Sam with the same comedic timing they expected of him and smiled inwardly at himself, they had no idea.
Then he was hit by a curveball…Kensi.
Kensi loved him, she admitted it, and he let some of his walls down with her. They talked and he had kissed her and finally…finally, she was going to let him date her properly, he wrapped up the case and was on his way to meet her at the mission. Finally they were going to take it to the next step…
He sent her a text telling her he was on his way and hoped against hope that she hadn't changed her mind. He got out of the car and walked into the darkened mission.
"Kenz?" he called.
The light was off over her desk and it was tidy. He sighed and gave a small laugh. She'd obviously got tired of waiting for him and had left. He turned to go and was confronted by Hetty who said the three small words that destroyed his world.
"She's been re-assigned."
He stood dumbstruck as Hetty told him that, he fought the anguish inside him and the disbelief, Hetty had pushed them to get together and when he was this close...so close he could touch it, it had been ripped away from him. The words 'story of my life' ran round his head.
He turned to leave and then Hetty added her final words.
"Button up Mr. Deeks, it's cold out there."
He looked stunned at her, was she firing him? She couldn't fire him, but taking away his partner probably meant he wasn't wanted at NCIS anymore and he knew exactly what to do when he wasn't wanted somewhere.
Silently he nodded and left.
Hetty watched him go, she knew he was hurting but something was still off with him.
She had hoped that with Kensi away, Deeks would be able to fix whatever was wrong between the rest of the team and him. She had seen the way he had pulled away from the rest of the team, she had seen and talked to Nate Getz after the Sidarov incident. All Nate had told her was that; No, Deeks did not have PTSD from the Sidarov incident, he had come through that well and was fit to return to work.
But something was off with him, something that may not have been caused by the Sidarov incident but nonetheless was eating at the young detective.
Deeks walked out to his car…No, not his car his NCIS issued vehicle.
He took the keys and left them on the seat. Then he walked around to the motor pool and over to where his motorbike which Hetty had confiscated stood in the corner. He swung his leg over the bike and reached down and hotwired the bike.
Revving it up he gave a small smile as he rode away from the mission and away from the pain.
An hour later he was in Bates' office.
"Really? I thought you were happy there?" Bates looked at him confused.
Deeks shrugged, "When have I ever fitted in anywhere?" He asked, "If you can't help me its fine, I'll just transfer somewhere else."
Bates looked at his detective, "Is this why you didn't sign those papers?" he asked, he had known about Hetty's offer for him to leave LAPD and join NCIS.
"Yeah, I was just waiting for it to happen, it's not their fault they are good people…it's just me, I'm not good enough for a team like that." Deeks turned his back to Bates and stared out of the window so he didn't see the anger on his boss' face.
Bates took a deep breath, "I don't have anything for you Deeks, why don't you take a few days off. Go home; really home, for a while. I will find something for you." He said.
"Yeah." He said flatly. He turned to go putting his hand on the door knob.
"Deeks." Bates said and he turned around.
"You are good enough for them and a damn fine cop." He said honestly.
"Right." Deeks said disbelievingly as he walked through the door and closed it behind him.
Walking into his apartment he realized that Bates was right about one thing. He needed a break, he needed to go home. He laughed, you could hardly call it a normal home, but it was the place he felt at home and wanted.
He put Monty into kennels and packed a bag with basics left his key with a neighbor and left.
Callen and Sam turned up for work the next day and started on their paperwork as Hetty walked into the bullpen, she had an older, heavyset, gray haired man with her.
"Gentlemen," She said standing with a new man beside her, "This is Detective Dan Jensen; he is our new LAPD Liaison."
Both men stood up, "Hetty…why, did you reassign Deeks?" Callen asked looking at the older man with worry as to what he was capable of and Sam stood next to him giving him a glare.
Jensen gave a snort, he had been warned by Bates that he wouldn't get a warm reception, but as he had told his boss, if it meant young Marty keeping this assignment then it would be worth it.
"No Mr. Callen, I did not reassign Mr. Deeks, Lieutenant Bates did, at Mr. Deeks' request."
"What? NO!" Both men argued,
"Hetty you need to get him back!" Sam exclaimed.
Hetty nodded, "I understand but Mr. Deeks is on a leave of absence right now and I cannot find him."
Jensen looked over at the empty desk, "This my desk?" he asked ignoring the two men and looking straight at Hetty who nodded.
"No, it's Deeks' desk." Sam snapped.
Jensen put his bag down, "I'll get on with my paperwork Ms. Lange," he said and picked up a file.
Callen and Sam stared at him.
Jensen knew what he was in for when Bates had called him last night to tell him his boy was going off the rails again.
Jensen had sighed down the phone, "PTSD again, he hasn't had a bad attack in years, he was doing so well." he said to Bates.
Bates told him about the conversation he had just had with the detective and with Hetty Lange. "Damn NCIS don't know how talented he is, I need this position filled and I can't put anyone there who'll want it permanently." he told Jensen.
Jensen smiled, "Bates, for Marty I'll always be there, told him that when he was a kid and I arrested his father, I told him that when he passed basic and graduated from the police academy and I'm telling you now, I will always have his back he is a good kid and a great cop."
Bates had chuckled at that, "And that's why I asked you to fill in for him, besides it should keep you safe till you retire."
"Forget it," Jensen said turning to the two Agents who were trying to intimidate him. "Deeks was my friend, I know already where I stand on this team, I will do my job and only my job."
"Deeks was your friend?" Callen asked.
"Doubt if we'll see him again, knowing him, he's gone home." Jensen pushed.
Callen grabbed his keys, "Where are you going?" Sam asked.
"Deeks' place. He says he's gone home so that's where I'm going I need to talk to him." Callen said
Jensen snorted again, "That's not his home, that's the apartment Bates made him take."
Callen slammed his hands on the desk in front of Jensen. "You know him so well, where is his home?" He demanded.
"Where he's always lived and felt welcome, Union Station Homeless shelter in Pasadena," he wrote the address down on a card and handed it to them, "Not sure you'll get a warm welcome there though." He called after them as they strode out of the building.
The pulled up outside the nondescript building with a small plaque on the side of the main door.
They tried the door and it was shut. Sam rang the bell and there was a squeal from some children inside.
"Can you get that?" a mans voice was heard inside.
It was quiet for a moment and the sounds of at least four locks being unlocked came from within.
A small blonde woman opened the door, she looked like she was in her early sixties. Her face was lined and well worn, a large faded red scar wrapped her throat and went up behind her right ear, her grey,blonde hair was tied in a ponytail and wrapped in a headscarf.
"Yes?" she asked, eyeing the two men warily one hand on the panic button just inside the door.
Sam showed her his badge, "Agents Hanna and Callen, NCIS, we are looking for Marty Deeks."
"There is no Marty Deeks here." The woman said sharply snapping at them her eyes darting at both of them with a barely disguised fear.
"Mom…Let them in," Deeks' tired voice came from behind her.
She opened the door and they walked in, she shot them a look and walked down the hallway to her son.
Deeks was holding a sleepy five month old girl in his arms, gently rocking the child. His mother walked towards him and reached out a hand and stroked his face lovingly, "I'll take her back honey," she said.
Deeks nodded, "Oh mom, She needs her methadone before you put her back down." He said, as he handed the little girl back he took a pacifier out of his pocket and handed it to his mom and kissed the little girl on the head.
"Methadone?" Callen asked a trace of annoyance on his face, while Sam looked at him in shock at the way he handled the child.
"Her mother was addicted to Heroin," Deeks said, he walked into a huge kitchen, and picked a few bowls off the large table and placed them in a bowl of water in the sink.
A five year old blond boy walked in and stood staring at Callen and Sam with frightened eyes.
"Danny?" Deeks said as he turned around and saw the child standing there.
The little boy looked tearful, "I…I'm sorry uncle Marty, I…" he moved away from Sam, "I missed breakfast."
Deeks smiled and patted the boy's head, he opened a cupboard and picked out a granola bar and a bag of chips and an apple, "Off you go, the teacher's coming today."
Danny's face brightened, "Can you come?!"
Deeks smiled, "I need to talk to my friends first, but I'll be there,"
"Yay!" the kid squealed. "UNCLE MARTY'S COMING TO TEACH!" he yelled running down the corridor a chorus of children yelled happily in the background as Deeks ushered Callen and Sam into an office.
Closing the door on the happy squeals, Deeks sat behind the desk and showed them two chairs, a plaque on the wall which said; "Martin A Brandel, Attorney at Law."
The desk was worn, as was the chair, there was a laptop and a huge shelf full of law books.
Pictures of Deeks with the woman who answered the door and a various other people, children and teenagers adorned the walls.
"Deeks, did you quit?" Callen asked him.
"No." Deeks said taking a drink out of the mug on his desk.
"No? Then why is Jensen sitting at your desk doing your job." Sam asked,
Deeks sighed, "Jensen got it did he? He's a good guy; he won't mess up on you." He picked up a file and looked at it. "I had thought the old coot would be retired by now." he said as if talking to himself.
"You just said you didn't quit," Callen prodded,
"I didn't, I'm still with LAPD, Jensen's just been moved to the assignment. Don't worry the apartment comes with the job so you'll know where to find him. I just asked to be reassigned." he still hadn't looked either man in the eye.
"What? WHY?" Callen asked,
"I wasn't good enough for the job, you need…you deserve better." Deeks turned his back on them putting a file in a cabinet. "With me gone you should get Kensi back and you need her."
"So you're going back to being a lawyer again?" Sam asked.
"Always done this job." Deeks said, "This has been my first job, LAPD was my second."
"And this is?" Sam asked waving his hand around trying to figure out what this place was to Deeks.
"This is my home, this is where I was raised, these people are my family, and these people want me." Deeks snapped.
"We want you." Sam said, "We need you."
Deeks gave a small laugh,"No, you don't." He pulled another file out of the cabinet and dropped it on his desk.
"What makes you say that man, what happened?" Sam asked.
"I don't trust you with my kids…" Deeks repeated to him the words he had said months ago, "You are not serious about the job Deeks, I don't trust you," then he turned to Callen.
"And you…I don't want you here?" Deeks said.
"What?" Callen looked shocked,
"You made my decision for me; Sam I understood, he just saw the persona I put on to deflect the fact that he himself still made me flinch. That's my fault, they are my demons…not his. But you…you knew, you've been through things like this, you said you didn't want me. I expected it from LAPD, I could take abuse from them I did expect it, but you…it's not your fault really Callen," Deeks said softening, "I was stupid enough to think you all actually cared about me. I let my guard down and trusted you guys."
Deeks stood up taking a file and walked over to the door leaving Callen and Sam looking at each other. "Give Hetty a message for me, Tell her she's right, it is cold out here, but it's where I belong."
He left the room and shut the door on the two stunned agents.
Callen opened his phone and called Hetty telling her all he had learned as Sam followed him down the corridor.
"Deeks?" Sam said. He looked around at the different rooms in the building, "Why is this home?"
Deeks shook his head, "It doesn't matter. This isn't your world Sam; you go back to your happy family." he turned away from Sam.
Sam put his hand on Deeks' shoulder and he flinched. "I…Marty?"
"You know I shot my father when I was eleven, but none of you asked what happened to me afterwards." Deeks said as Callen walked up behind him.
Callen closed the door to the visiting room and Deeks sank onto a sofa and picked up a child's soft toy turning it around in his fingers as he remembered his past, he didn't want to share it but he had worked with them for years and he felt at the very least he needed to tell them so they'd leave him alone.
"Mom was ill for a long time, dad beat her to a pulp…You saw the scars?" he asked his voice barely above a whisper.
They had noticed the scar down the side of the neck of the woman who had opened the door to them, so they nodded.
"He tried to slit her throat, there was blood everywhere then he came for...then he came for me. I grabbed the box from under my bed, he was pounding on my back it hurt so bad, he was mad, I wouldn't stay and watch...I ran away, so he'd come after me not..., we grappled for the gun, but I turned over and I shot him as the police came up the stairs."
Deeks stared off into space his eyes glistening with the memories, "I was so scared I thought momma was dead,there was so much blood and I hoped he was, but he moved and tried to stab me." He pulled his trouser leg up.
"You asked me once why if I surf I, don't wear shorts like Eric," he showed them a nine inch scar on his leg; "This is why, a lasting reminder of the fact I had a father." He pulled his trouser leg down quickly as a door opened.
"Oh sorry Marty I didn't realize you were using this room?"
A smiling Hispanic woman came into the room, she looked at the men warily, they moved to show their badges and she shot Deeks a look of concern.
He smiled to let her know it was ok and then he answered her, "It's ok Shelia, did you need it? We can move," he said to the older woman.
"I was just looking for some paints, Elise is due for art therapy." She smiled at the men.
Deeks gave a small laugh, "Just don't let her try and talk you into paint-balling as an art therapy, I couldn't sit down for a week after last time, she shot me in the butt!"
"She is fourteen years old Deeks and I'm a therapist not a commando!" Sheila laughed relaxing.
Deeks grinned as he got up and walked across the large bright room to a box on the shelf.
"Over here." He said as he pulled the box out, "Sorry I couldn't sleep last night so I rearranged the room again."
Sheila looked at him worried, "Not sleeping again honey? Do you want to schedule a session with me again later?"
Deeks shook his head, "I'm ok, honest." he lied and she saw through the lie.
"If you won't talk to me, talk to him, he's still here, he's upstairs with the babies and your mother," He voice dropped as she leaned in closer, "Marty, you were the worst case of abuse I have ever seen, if you ever need to see me, you know I'm available." She hugged him and he nodded.
"Thanks Sheila." He said quietly.
He turned as she left to find Callen and Sam staring at him.
"We didn't know." Sam said.
"I'm not a hard luck case, this is my home!" He snapped and sat back in the large overstuffed chair, "I have lived here since I was eleven, I was thrown out at 16, put myself through college, lived on the streets, passed the bar exam, worked pro bono and on the books and brought this place. No one leaves here until they are ready now. I am not a screw up, I am not the fall guy and I am not alone…here. Here I have family."
He waited as the emotions of what he had just said worked through him.
"I don't need NCIS," He snapped, as if he had just come to a decision, getting up and walking to one of the two windows that brought light into the room he could feel his grasp on his mental health shaking again he didn't need to lose it, not now not with them in here.
"But Mr. Deeks, NCIS needs you." Hetty said walking into the room with his mother behind her. "I have been talking to Ms Deeks, she agrees with me."
"Mom?" Deeks snapped as he mother walked in behind her.
"Marty, these people, they worry about you, they made mistakes…people do that sometimes, just remember your promise…you promised your sister."
Deeks walked away from the group and looked out over the closed yard where a group of teenagers were playing basketball. his jaw clenched as he fought to keep his emotions inside.
"You have a sister?" Sam asked.
Deeks shook his head.
"Martin!" His mother exclaimed. "We won't ever forget her, we won't let him win, we won't." she said wrapping her arms around him and repeating the mantra she had told him many times before.
Deeks looked at his mother, silent tears streaming down his face, as he felt his hold slip.
"I failed her…I was brave for Sam, I didn't tell, I saved his wife, but I couldn't save her…I couldn't…." He buried his head in her shoulder as waves of memories from the Sidarov mission coursed over him.
"You were eleven, it wasn't your fault, you stopped him eventually, you saved me, and you saved yourself."
Shelia walked back into the room and sat beside the pair of them on the floor, "Fern?" she asked May Deeks softly.
She held him too nodding to the others to come closer, "What set him off?" she asked knowing he was too zoned to hear her.
"He was involved in an undercover operation a few months ago where he was tortured," Sam said.
Deeks laughed derisively, "That wasn't torture that was a Sunday."
"What?" Callen said,
"It was just like a childhood Sunday, Sidarov's men should have met my dad, they need lessons." Another Sob tore from his throat as his emotions swung back and forth from anger to normality and then despair, "Mom…!" he held her again, "I should have been able to save her."
Hetty looked at the two women and her broken agent, "Would you like me to call Mr. Getz?" she asked.
"Nate? Sure, he's upstairs." Shelia said "fourth floor, door 112. He's been helping here since Deeks started with NCIS."
Sam got up and headed upstairs.
"Marty," Hetty said moving as they helped him to the couch, "Who is Fern? She isn't in your file."
Deeks shook his head. "I…I can't…" he held tight to his mom's hand as she rubbed his back trying to get him back to normal, sometimes it took five minutes sometimes hours, she was hoping it was the earlier of the two times.
Nate opened the door, ignoring Hetty and Callen he sat next to Deeks, "Fern?" he asked Shelia.
Shelia nodded and someone called "Sidarov?" she said. Nate nodded in understanding.
"Marty, we have talked about this before, what happened to Fern was not your fault, your father was sick, he was responsible, not you."
Deeks looked up at Nate, "I s…saved Sam's wife…but I couldn't save her, he….He…raped her Nate…He strangled her…he made…made me…watch…told me I needed to learn…a woman's place..." Deeks lost it again.
Sam looked over at Nate, "Sidarov didn't rape Michelle." He told Nate confused.
Nate moved to let the two women comfort him again as he left he saw Deeks' head turn as he finally looked at his mother, he gave a small smile this was not going to be a long episode.
Nate ushered the others out of the room. "This…does not go on any file at NCIS." He ordered. "Deeks is still suffering PTSD from this."
"Sidarov?" Sam asked, "I thought you cleared him for duty? you told us he was well and had come through it."
Nate sighed, "For Deeks, Sidarov was nothing, and he coped with that because he'd already been through his. He was eleven when he watched his father rape and murder his sister, then he turned on his mother and then went after him, Deeks did the only thing he could do, he defended himself."
"We never knew," Hetty said. It was true, the files she had on Deeks, like the ones she had on the rest of the team were extensive but this wasn't in any of them.
Nate whirled on them, "You told him you didn't want him on your team." Nate said to Callen, and then he turned to Hetty.
"You sent the one person Deeks let past his personal barriers away from him and then told him it was cold outside. He thought you didn't want him, he didn't feel a part of the whole anymore, so he came home, where he knew people wouldn't judge him and he was wanted."
"Nate," Sam said, "I told him I didn't trust him with my kids or in the field."
Nate gave a sad smile, "Sam, Deeks expected it from you, he knew that you didn't trust him, he wanted to make you proud but understood that he wasn't worthy of your trust. You hurt him the least, you played right into his idea of you." Nate looked at the shocked man, "In a small way you were the one who never broke his trust, you never had it. It's not your fault, for him it's more the way you carry yourself and the way you act, you remind him of his father, he was too scared to trust you."
Sam looked hurt, but said nothing for a second.
"How can we fix this?" he asked.
Nate smiled, "You need to get to know the real Deeks. I did, I will admit I was surprised. He's smart, he's funny, he's strong…don't let that in there fool you. He still has his demons but he helps run this place, he still practices law for the shelter and the women here. He runs the daycare here on his days off, takes the teenagers out one on one, and spends time with them working on their self esteem. Teaches motorcycle mechanics and is an instructor in advanced motorcycle riding. Hetty you need to give him his key back by the way, he's the safest driver out of all of you." Nate looked at their shocked faces.
"Like you all Deeks thrives when he knows he is cared about. Here they love him." He finished.
Hetty turned and walked back into the room the others followed.
"Mr. Deeks." She said.
All four men in the room stopped dead and Deeks' head whipped around to her. He glanced at her and then his eyes hit the ground, his eyes were red but he had managed to find his center and was now calm and collected.
"I already know Hetty, I'm fired…kinda, Jensen's a good man, he'll be good for the team."
"Maybe, but not my team, I already had a liaison officer in mind." Hetty said.
Deeks sighed, "I'm sorry, I didn't have time to think I thought Jensen would be a good fit which is why I asked Bates to call him."
"You are right he would have been a good fit, but you were and still are perfect for my team." Hetty said.
"When I said what I said Deeks, I meant I didn't want you back until you were well and ready, I didn't want you to push yourself, you have been through a lot and need to heal, but I DO want you on my team." Callen said honestly.
"You do?" Deeks asked surprised.
"Yeah." Callen looked at him so he knew he was telling the truth.
"Mr. Jensen will be sent back to LAPD forthwith and you Mr. Deeks, are on a month long leave of absence to heal," Hetty told him.
Deeks smiled, "Really?"
"I do have one proviso," Hetty said, "You are to make sure that when you come back you still continue your fine work here."
Deeks looked confused, "Work? I don't work here?"
"Deeks, Nate told us all you do here. Working with the kids?" Sam said.
"Its not work, they are my family, my little brothers and sisters and my nephews and nieces." He said. A door opened and a 17 year old heavily pregnant girl walked in, "Marty, I'm having a boy, isn't it great…you still want me to call him Sam?" she asked.
Deeks jumped off the couch and ran over to her and hugged her, "Yeah of course Liza, Sam is a fine strong name for a boy, you want a hand with your bag?" he asked, Liza rolled her eyes as Deeks looked pointedly at Sam.
Sam smiled and got a small grin from Deeks who warmed at the idea that he had just in some way pleased him.
"Momma Deeks; Get Marty to stop babying me!" she said.
"Marty, let your sister do it herself." May said with a smile.
Deeks poked his tongue out at Liza and she laughed, "You're still coming to the store room and helping me with the baby stuff later?" she asked looking at the other people there.
"Wouldn't miss it for my new nephew." He grinned.
Liza smiled and left.
"Deeks how many brothers and sisters do you have?" Callen asked.
"Right now?" Deeks asked and he counted, "Er, 32 I think and three nieces, five nephews and a soon to be nephew." He grinned.
Callen turned to Deeks, "Can…Can I help?" he asked.
"Help?" Deeks asked.
"Here at the shelter, I'm not as smart as you are with all the law stuff, but I can fix things and I'd like to help." He offered, Sam nodded in agreement.
"We want to be a part of your family too Deeks." Sam said. "If you'll allow us?"
"You do?" Deeks asked surprised
Callen wrapped an arm around his shoulder, "Yeah we do…now you wanna show us around your home?" he asked.
Deeks' face lit up and he, Callen and Sam walked out.
Hetty talked to Nate, "Do you think they will be ok?"
Nate nodded, "Deeks wasn't going to be ok until he let them in, and I had hoped it would have been easier on him, but when you sent Kensi away he was devastated."
"It needed to be her on this assignment Nate; she needs to do this, for them both to have a future." I had hoped that he understood that I cared, I didn't realize about this part of his life.
"I only knew because I volunteered at another shelter and was sent here to fill in for someone. Deeks keeps his private life close to his chest. But you picked well, he is an asset to the team."
"He is an asset to all of us." Hetty said watching her boys walk down the corridor and Deeks laughing. "We are all greater for knowing him."
"And soon he'll be back on the team and they will all be together again." Nate said in understanding. "And God help the bad guys." He smiled.