Kensi looked up at the building as the team pulled up to the abandoned hospital.
“Any sighting of him Eric?” She asked as she climbed out of her car to join Callen and Sam on the sidewalk.
“No, nothing.” Eric replied.
Kensi looked at the others, “You ready?” She asked, pulling on her tactical vest and pulling her sidearm.
Callen looked at the building, “Eric, you got a thermal on the building?” He asked. “How many are we dealing with?”
Unseen in Ops; Eric nodded as he typed on his keyboard. “I have, the building is empty, except for one heat source on the third floor.” He informed them. “He’s not moving, but he’s not dead.”
Kensi took her vest off; she figured if he was on his own, she would not need it.
“Well, let’s go find him.” Callen ordered. “Eric get the paramedics on standby in case he’s injured.”
“Will do… and be careful.” Eric warned.
“Careful, the building is empty isn’t it?” Callen replied.
“Yeah, but Callen, it’s Halloween.” Eric breathed.
Callen turned, looking at a few early houses on the block with decorations outside.
“No kidding?” Callen replied, the irony prevalent in his voice, “Never held with it myself, but we are here for Deeks and I don’t think he wants us dressed up, or that there will be any candy involved.”
He turned and caught up with the others at the door.
Sam smirked, “Should we knock and yell trick or treat?” He asked.
Callen rolled his eyes and sighed, opening the main door and making sure the corridor was clear.
“Let’s go get Deeks.” He ordered and walked down the hallway, Sam and Kensi following up behind grinned at each other for a second.
“What?” Callen asked as he looked at his partner.
Sam’s grin widened, “You don’t get the irony?” He joked. “A creepy building on Halloween. I’d have loved to do this as a kid, wouldn’t you?”
Callen shook his head, pushing a dark thought away.
“Come on G,” Sam smirked. “I could see you, dressed as a Mummy, wrapped in bandages… trick or treat?”
“Come on.” Callen growled, moving closer to where Deeks was.
“You’d have been cute; you have to have gone at least once?”
“Nope.” Callen checked the open doors as they walked down the hallway.
Deeks’ scream echoed down the hallway, followed by a deep laugh.
The team closed ranks.
“Eric, I thought you said we were alone!” Callen said as they quickened their pace. “Eric?”
All three of them jumped as a loud burst of static blasted through the earwig.
"LEAVE….” A voice hissed over the com.
“Eric?” Callen stopped and took the communication unit out of his ear. He wanted to stomp on it, but knowing that Hetty would rip him a new one and make him pay for it in more ways than one, he switched it off and put it in his pocket.
“Com’s are down.” He said to the others.
“So we’re blind?” Kensi asked as they moved towards the direction Deeks’ scream had emanated from.
"You will be….” A disembodied voice replied.
Sam stopped dead and raised his weapon, “What the hell?” He snarled as he looked around.
“What was that?” Kensi asked.
Callen shrugged, “Just the wind, come on, we need to find Deeks.”
“That wasn’t the wind G.” Sam argued as he looked around for the source of the voice.
“Come on Sam!” Callen exclaimed, “Don’t do this, ghosts aren’t real, but Deeks is, now let’s go find him.”
He set his shoulders and walked down the hallway.
"DEEKS!" he called hoping for a reply, but there was nothing.
A piece of plaster fell from the ceiling as Kensi was about to step under it, Sam’s arm pulled her out of harm’s way.
“Careful Kens.” He checked to see if she had been hurt. “This place is falling apart.”
A door slammed down the hallway and they moved faster towards the sound.
Then there were two smaller bangs in opposite directions.
“Split up,” Callen hissed. “We’ll meet further down.”
The others nodded and split up.
Kensi went to the left, “Deeks…!” she called, hoping she would find him.
“Deeks is dead… come, join us.” A voice whispered in her ear.
“What the hell!” she jumped and whirled around, her gun at the ready.
Quickly she scanned the room; there was no one there.
“Sam?” she called trying to hide the shake in her voice.
“Not Sam… not Sam… not Sam…” The voice repeated, getting louder and louder until she had to cover her ears. She dropped the gun and placed her hands over her ears crouching trying to block out the noise.
“ENOUGH!” A louder, more familiar voice cut above the others.
In shock, Kensi let her hands fall from her ears, as she opened her eyes and stared at a pair of familiar looking boots.
“Daddy?” she whispered.
She looked up at a pair of kind brown eyes and a comforting smile.
“Hey baby girl.” He smiled at her.
She moved back, “No… you’re dead!”
The spirit of Donald Blye looked at Kensi. “I am, but I’m not here to hurt you.”
Tentatively, Kensi reached out her hand, but the apparition stepped back, “We cannot touch, but I am here to protect you from The Others.”
“The Others?” she asked, picking up her service weapon and holstering it in the back of her pants.
“This is a vortex, a place of spiritual energy.” The apparition told her. “Much of it bad, some good. Your man needs help. He needs you to save him, as will another of your group.”
“My…” Kensi blushed.
“He’s a good man.” Donald said as he headed to the doorway, “Don’t judge him by his lack of words; his heart belongs to you.”
Kensi nodded as she followed him, feeling braver and safer than she had a while ago.
Callen took the hallway straight ahead as Sam took the right.
There was an open alcove, the door long since rotted away and a set of stairs leading down and to the right, the hallway was dark. Callen chuckled to himself darkly, “Down to Hell.” He murmured.
“You can do it G-Force.” The voice sounded close by, but Callen shook it off. It was not a ghost, it was a memory.
Halfway down the stairs, he felt a hand on his back and a shove, grasping the rail he managed to stop himself from falling.
The stairwell grew darker as Callen hit a landing, and turned to see who had pushed him.
There was a loud bang, as the door he had just walked through slammed shut.
It took a second for him to realize that there had never been a door there.
“What?” he looked up, and a large black shadow figure loomed down over him.
“Federal Agent!” he yelled, raising his gun and mentally cursing Eric for making a mistake.
“You boy, are not a federal agent.” The shadow said. “You are a foster brat. You don’t have the brains to be anything other than trash boy.”
The figure coalesced into a face Callen had not seen in years, and despite his assertions that ghosts did not exist, he knew this man was dead and he found himself stepping back away and cowering.
“Dead?” The man gave a nasty leer. “Yeah, and soon you will be, you got away from me once boy; this time there’s no one to save you.”
Callen raised his gun and fired, surprised that the sound seemed muted as the walls felt like they were closing in on him.
The figure moved closer, “I have been waiting to get my hands on you, boy.”
“No… Ma... Malone?” Callen could not believe what he was seeing; Craig Malone had been dead for fifteen years. He had died in jail after the murder of Jason Dawson, a foster child in his care, the boy who had died saving the life of an eight-year-old G. Callen.”
Malone grinned, “You’re on my turf now boy.”
Callen stood as the man walked up to him, “You’re just a figment of my imagination.”
Malone leered at him, “Yeah…” his fist clenched and punched Callen in the face.
Callen fell back in shock, “No…” He fought back, swinging every blow missing, going through the specter facing him.
“Still, as feeble as ever boy.” Malone snarled. “You heard that friend of yours scream?
This place takes you and keeps you; you’re never getting out of here.”
Callen screamed as a large scratch appeared across his chest.
“SAM!” He called, not caring how he sounded.
"SAAAAMMMMMY!" Malone mimicked mockingly. “Save me Sammy! Save me Jason…”
He hit Callen repeatedly, until he was curled in the corner of the stairwell.
“Let Sam come,” Malone scoffed. “I’ll deal with him the same as I did Jason.”
Callen shook his head, “No… no… not again!” he tried defending himself, again his blows missing his target. “It’s not real, you’re not real!” He screamed, shaking his head.
Maybe the air was drugged, there were no such things as ghosts.
“No one cares about you, boy. No one has ever cared, no one will save you. You are mine now for eternity… welcome to your hell.” Malone laughed as Callen whimpered.