The Empty glass of truth

Chapter 7

Clara looked at her bag; she had packed the last of her things away and was waiting for her boys to take her home.

She smiled every time she thought of Grisha and Martin, together under one roof.

"Mama?" Callen knocked on the door and stuck his head through, "Are you ready to go?"

"I am waiting on my papers, then we can leave, where is…?"

"Right here Mom." Deeks said bringing a wheelchair and a set of papers into the room.

Clara signed her papers and Callen helped her into the chair. "Really Grisha, I can walk." Clara said.

"Hospital policy mom." Deeks told her.

She nodded and sat back as Callen wheeled her to her car, "Mrs. Deeks. So you're leaving us." Callie the nurse said as she took the signed discharged papers. "Are these your sons?" she asked.

Clara smiled, "Yes, my eldest son Grisha and my youngest Martin."

Callie smiled, "Your mother has talked about you both a lot. She is proud of you both."

Both boys smiled, "We are proud of her too." Marty said.

"Well you take good care of her." Callie smiled as they left pushing her out of the hospital. As the doors to the elevator closed, Callie picked up the phone.

"It's me, she's gone. Discharged, Callen and Deeks picked her up, she is going to stay with her son, but I don't know which one." She closed the phone dropped the discharge papers onto the desk, and walked out of the hospital.


Callen pulled up outside the house.

"This is a lovely home you have Grisha," Clara said looking at it appreciatively she wondered if her son had someone special in his life that made him pick this family home.

"Thank you." Callen opened the front door.

Clara noticed the house was almost entirely furnished with furnishings from her home, all except for a chair, a small plant and a box on the mantelpiece. "You really didn't have any furniture did you?" she asked.

"Didn't need any, just for me." Callen replied as they walked inside. "If there's anything you need that we haven't brought just let us know, either I or Marty will go and get it."

Clara sat on her sofa and closed her eyes.

"Why buy a family home if you were not going to have things in it to start a family?" Clara asked as she rested.

"This was my family home." Callen said absently. "I mean...kinda…for a while, the Rostoffs, they were a nice family and took me in."

"Were you with them for long?" Clara asked he heart hurting hearing about another family raising her son.

"Three months." Callen said proudly, "My longest placement." He smiled.

"That year?" she asked.

"Ever." Callen said turning to grab the box off the mantel piece and took it to his room. "Mama…?" He turned and called back to her, "Would you like to see your room?" He asked nervously.

Clara nodded, "I would." She replied, picking up her bag she followed him down the hall, "That's Marty's room, he likes pink." Callen joked, Clara recognizing the nervousness smiled too.

He pointed to the smallest room at the back, "That's my room, and this is yours." He opened the door to the master bedroom; she looked at the delicate sage green colored walls and the en-suite bathroom. "But Grisha, this is the main bedroom, this should be yours?" she protested.

Callen shook his head, "That's always been my room; I just didn't want to change it." He admitted. It had reminded him of the closest thing to stability he had ever experienced in his young life and he liked sleeping in there.

Callen closed his door to his room and lay on his bed roll on the floor. His room was now the only one with hardly any furniture, just a small table and a chair, for Callen to use his laptop, but nothing else.

He listened to the sounds of his mother and brother settling in, and sat up, opening his bag he took out the laptop that Nell had found at his mother's home. He held the box, his first instinct was to pick the lock, however if he did that, what if he lost his mother trust and she left him. He didn't think he could lose her a second time.

He lay back and dozed off while trying to make sense of all that had happened.

He felt like hours had gone by as he looked at the box, looking at his watch he was surprised that in reality he'd only lost two hours. He could smell something delicious coming from his kitchen and rubbing his eyes he walked out of the bedroom.

For a second he stopped his mind flashing back to his childhood, him waking up sleepy stepping over Alina's toys and looking up to see his foster mother cooking breakfast. Half asleep he sat at the kitchen table.

"Dobroye Utro." He said. His hands closed around the mug that Deeks gave him.

"Actually moy syn, It is still the afternoon, you haven't slept for that long, I am making dinner, I checked with Martin, and today I am making your favorite meals from when you were a boy."

Callen looked up surprised, "My favorite meals?" he asked.

Clara nodded.

Callen looked at Deeks for a hint, Deeks smiled at his brother and shrugged, "I dunno what it is, but as usual it smells great. I have to take Monty for a walk, I'll be back in time for dinner mom."

Callen followed Deeks to the door, "You don't have to go." He said although he was looking forward to having some time with her, he did feel uncomfortable without Deeks there as a buffer between them.

"Are you kidding, did you see the surf report this morning, Eric and I are heading out to Venice, the swells are huge, we're not working so I'm gonna get some surf time in." He said quietly so Clara wouldn't over hear.

"Thanks." Callen deadpanned and smiled as he closed the door hearing his brothers happy whistling as he walked with Monty to the car to head to Eric's to pick up is surfboard.


Callen walked back into the kitchen, sitting at the table and picking up his coffee he listened to his mother humming as she cooked, a flash of memory hit him.

He was small and he was in the kitchen as his mother stood at the sink in their small apartment, she was looking out of the window and he was drinking from a small plastic cup.

"Mama, gde papa i Emi ?" He asked.

Clara dried her hands and picked him up and hugged him and sat him back on the table, "Oni vne, papa vstrechayetsya s dyadey Arkadiya."

Callen spat out his coffee. "Arkady?!"

Clara looked at her son. "Sorry?"

"You know Arkady Kolcheck."

This wasn't a question and Clara knew it, "Of course, he is your father's brother." She said matter of factly.

"So he…he knew my name?" Callen asked.

"Of course he knew your name; it was after all his middle name." Clara looked confused, "Arkady was to watch over you for me when we got to America, I thought something had happened to him…I have never heard from him since I got here. I think he died."

"Died, my a…." Callen bit back the word he was going to use. "Mama, sit down." He said he looked over at her, "Arkady is alive and he has been living here all the time."

Clara looked shocked, "Really? But I would have thought he would have found me." She said.

Callen stood up "Wait there."

Walking into his room he came out with the locked box of his mother's and her laptop and his own box.

Putting her things in front of her he sat and waited. "We found these in your house." He said.

Clara looked at them, a dark look crossing her face.

She took a key from around her neck and opened the lock box.

She took a small Sig Sauer P232 from the box and placed it on the table, "This is mine, I do have a current permit," she added then a manila envelope was placed on the table. "You, me, your father, Arkady and your sister." She said.

Carefully she opened the envelope and started showing him pictures.

He sat as she got up and went back to her meal, He carefully looked through each picture, memories that were buried were slowly coming to the surface, pictures of himself as a baby, Amy as a small child, his father…Arkady, holding him as a child. A small black and white puppy, "Mishka." Callen said without thinking.

Clara walked over and looked at the picture, "Yes that was Mishka he was your puppy." Callen closed his eyes and the memory of him holding his dog tightly while sobbing for his father assailed him."

"He was with me after papa left." Callen remembered.

Clara nodded, "I am so sorry you were left alone, had I known I would have made sure you and Amelia came with me." She said sitting back down next to him.

"And the laptop." Callen said not wanting to dwell on that right now.

"It is mine, I have my information on it, old CIA contacts with up to date information. Also I was using it to search for your father." She admitted.

She opened the laptop and frowned as it started up, hitting the power button and crashing the laptop she slammed the lid closed.

"Someone has hacked into my laptop…I need to have someone look at this," Clara looked concerned.

Callen smiled, "I know just the team."


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