Lena sat in the car and looked over the rear of the seat at Sam who was in the trunk looking for the booster seat he kept in there for her.
"Uncle Sam. Is daddy mad at me?" she asked a flicker of hidden concern on her face.
"What? Why would you ask that?" It was a question which to him made no sense.
"Daddy was crying as he saw me." Lena explained, "Did I make him mad? I didn't want to leave and come down with you. But if I'm the one that is making daddy sad, can I come and stay with you and auntie Michelle." She teared up as she asked, but just like her parents Lena was showing their selfless traits and didn't want anyone to be hurt.
Sam watched as the child thought over all her options. He realised, with a start, that the enthusiasm she has shown on him entering the room upstairs had been fake. she seemed to be as good an undercover agent as her parents.
"No Lena...you didn't make your daddy upset at all." He said pulling the child into a hug. "In fact your mom and dad will be down any minute to take you back to the boatshed to see grandma." He added, relaxing as the child smiled. "Sometimes adults cry when they are happy, I know your daddy was really happy to see you, we all were."
"Because the bad man took me?" she asked.
"And because you are safe and sound." He clipped in the seat and motioned for her to climb in.
As Lena did so and helped as Sam strapped her in. She asked. "Daddy is coming home now isn't he?"
Sam nodded, "I am sure he is, he loves you peanut, don't ever forget it."
Lena let her head drift back, her eye hurt where the bad man had hit her. She hadn't seen him again after that, but with mommy and daddy there she was sure that they had made the bad man go away, after all that's what mommies and daddies did. She was hoping she could tell Eva all about what had happened to her, as Sam started the car the noise and throb of the engine helped her to close her eyes and drift off to sleep.
Callen and Kensi climbed into the car and Sam drove the emotionally exhausted trio back to the safety of the boat-shed.
Hetty looked up as the group arrived at the boat-shed, Kensi carrying Lena, still asleep, in her arms, she walked past the group and lay her down on the cot her father had been sleeping on earlier.
Callen hung back as he saw the others looking at him, his gaze was pulled to Nate. He didn't know how he could look the other man in the eye.
Nate noticed the evasion and moved to escort him to one side, "Callen, are you ok?" he asked.
Callen nodded but still didn't look at him, which sent up red flags to Nate. "Come with me." he said.
Callen shot a look of panic as he looked for Kensi but couldn't see her.
Nate put a hand on his shoulder and he flinched away but followed moving to the corner of the room as Nate closed the door.
"I take it you want your medication," Nate said with a smile, "You are nearly done, according to Hetty's friend Dr. Gopti, this should be your last dose." he filled the syringe and Callen just held out his arm.
Nate gave him the medication and waited as Callen rolled down his sleeve but didn't take his eyes off the floor.
"Do you want to talk?" Nate asked softly waiting for his friend to respond.
Callen sat there for a few minutes questions clogging up his mind, how could he ask him...tell him what he remembered.
"Do you hate me?" He mumbled.
"What?" Nate was caught off guard with the question.
"Rose...I remember...kind of...What did she have?" he asked, was he a father again? Did Nate know?
Nate smiled and pulled out a picture, "We have a son, Jamie." he showed Callen a picture of a 3 year old boy. Rose was holding him and the boy had dark brown eyes and dark hair the spitting image of his father.
Callen sighed with relief, "He looks like you." he laughed softly.
"He should, he's my son...I'm sorry, I forgot you didn't know, you never touched Rose that night, just fell asleep telling her how much you loved Kensi."
"I...I thought...maybe…" he trailed off.
Nate grinned, "Drunk or sober Callen you are to much of a gentleman to cheat on your wife, just like I wouldn't with mine." he flashed the ring on his left hand.
"You got married?" Callen asked the awe in his voice evident.
Nate nodded, "Right after Jamie was born, Rose didn't want to be pregnant in the wedding photos."
Callen smiled and then he looked away and sighed.
"What is it?" Nate prodded.
"I remember everything Nate. Kensi, Lena, you Sam, the others and Hetty...I remember the last time I was in the mission...I don't have a job do I?" he looked up, the hope that he was wrong was shining in his eyes.
"You don't?" Nate sounded surprised, "We haven't replaced you, Nell's been helping out but we've been looking for you the whole time."
Callen only half believed him, but his meds were kicking in and he didn't have the need to fight him.
"I killed my father Nate...shot him...right between the eyes and I don't feel bad about it, I'm a killer….I…"
"Stop right there." Nate said sternly and Callen jerked back at his tone.
"You did not kill your father, Deeks called me and told me what happened. Janvier was not your father." Nate made sure Callen could see his face and see the truth of his words.
"I believed him…" Callen said so softly, "How could I have believed him…?"
Nate moved to that Callen could see him, "G, Janvier was a con artist and a criminal. He knew the best way to get what he wanted out of someone and he was the kind of man who researched his target well, Deeks found some photo-shopped pictures of him with your mother. That coupled with the MKUltra drug made you more suggestible...also, your own longing for answers helped."
"So if I hadn't wanted to know so bad, if I hadn't been looking I wouldn't have made myself a target?" Callen asked the pain and guilt evident in his voice.
"No...Janvier had fixated on you years ago, he had the resources needed to find out things about you. He used them to his own end, you were not to blame for this."
Callen nodded, he believed Nate...somewhere, deep down he knew that Nate had never lied to him.
The drug coursed through his system and he lay back on the stuffed couch he was sitting on, "I need…." he sighed as he closed his eyes.
Nate smiled knowing exactly what he needed and was determined to make sure he got it. "Stay there…" Nate said and left him alone in the room.
Nate walked out to find Kensi. Sam and Hetty talking quietly to each other in the main room.
"How is he?" Kensi asked jumping to her feet.
"He's resting on the couch, Give him ten minutes, then Hetty, you need to go and talk to him." Nate said crossing his arms and looking at her, "Callen remembers everything now, some of it is jumbled because of the medication. The one thing he has remembered is that you fired him." he looked accusingly at Hetty.
"I did no such thing, Mr. Getz. Mr. Callen left I think his exact words were 'I quit', however I did not and will not accept his resignation." Hetty replied as both Kensi and Sam glared at her.
"If he comes back will you split us up again?" Kensi asked prepared to quit there and then to restore her family.
"Heaven's no! You need to be together, although Mrs. Callen, if there is any chance of this affecting your work I will step in, although knowing now what I didn't know then...you both worked together admirably so I cannot see your working relationship being affected by it." she promised and smiled as Kensi strode over and hugged the smaller woman.
"Thank you." Kensi sighed.
"I have some other news." Nate said solemnly, "Eva...she's going to be alright, she's got a month left in hospital but she should recover fully."
Kensi smiled, "Thank you for finding out Nate. I know I should have but…"
Nate patted her on the shoulder, "You were concerned for your daughter's welfare, that was your first priority. No one blames you for not thinking about Eva….Especially not Eva, I called her when Deeks told me you were all safe to let her know. She sends her love and hopes to see you all soon."
Kensi wrapped him in a hug, "Thank you so much Nate, we owe you."
Nate kissed her cheek, "Lena is family after all." he replied as if that were an explanation in itself.
Hetty slipped inside the room as Callen was lost in thought, laying on the couch feeling dopey from the medication but he hadn't allowed himself to fall asleep yet.
"You know, when I first met you I was surprised at how much like your mother you were, you were stubborn, headstrong, and very very loyal." she said quietly as she sat on the chair next to the couch.
Callen nodded, "I remember, in the hospital, after the shooting." he mumbled.
Hetty shook her head, "No...not at all, you were fifteen I believe, you had been arrested on charges of shoplifting."
Callen pushed himself up on his elbows and turned to look at her.
"You were there?" He remembered the incident clearly although didn't remember her being there.
"I had been keeping tabs on you ever since I had learned of your existence. I kept up with your grades, tried to make sure your foster homes were good ones, moved you when they weren't, helped fund your college." She waited as he took it all in.
"You still did that even after you met me?" he sat up and looked her in the eye, "Even after I was arrested. Were you responsible for getting my record wiped?"
Hetty smiled, "I helped because of what I saw and what you did, do you remember?" she asked.
Callen nodded, "I thought at that point we were all going to jail, I couldn't let that happen to the others, they were just kids…."
Hetty smiled, "You were a fifteen year old boy who took responsibility for 3 children under ten, you were all scared and you protected them from three tough police officers, one social worker and a precinct captain." she reminded him.
Callen looked away ashamed, "I had stolen...it was stupid getting caught like that."
Hetty moved closer and patted the younger man on the arm comfortingly.
"You were protecting the innocent, you had no idea, you had been lied to and betrayed, yet you fought for the well being of those in your charge." She looked him in the eye, "That Mr. Callen is when I knew you had the makings of a great man, that is not a trait I take lightly, I am not sure as to the current state of your memory, but rest assured I did not and will not accept your resignation, neither will I accept Mrs. Callen's. You are both valuable assets on my team and it would be remiss of me to, as they say, keep the oyster and throw the pearl."
Callen looked up at her and with a start realized she was smiling.
"So I can stay?" he asked.
She smiled, "As soon as you pass Nate's evaluations and re-qualify I expect to see you back at your desk."
"I am sorry." he said quickly, "For what I said….about you...I mean…"
Hetty looked at him. "Sometimes Mr. Callen, Sons will get angry at their mothers, but as mothers, we always forgive."
He pulled her into a hug, knowing with his family nearby he was finally home.
Did you enjoy my story? Please let me know what you think by leaving a review! Thanks, Gina Mae CallenWrite a Review