Author => Vicki

Callen and Arkady: Take Two


Back in December 2013, we posted our first discussion about the relationship about Callen and Arkady. With the former KGBs reoccurrence again in Beacon, we thought it was appropriate to reflect on the interesting relationship that these two have had from the start and what may be coming up in Beacon.


Beacon (S6E21) Press Release

Callen and Sam are shocked when an old acquaintance they thought had been murdered shows up and asks for their help. Their investigation uncovers a possible breach of America’s economic sanctions against Russia.


The press release for Beacon had us curious to know who the old acquaintance was, until we watched the promo and realized that its Arkady Kolcheck. Based on the sneak peek, we witness someones attempt on Arkadys life (think back to the Third Choir), making the team think that it was Arkady who was killed. But while the team are concerned over how this news affects Callen, he refuses to accept his old friends death.


(Callen knees down beside the charred body) 

This doesnt feel right. Theres no way knowing who this is.” (Stands up) Dental records are going to take forever.” (Shrugs) Maybe Arkadys not dead.

Sam: Fascinating.

Callen: What!

Sam: Youre not sure how you feel about your friend, Arkady being dead.

Callen: Lets get one thing clear, we werent friends. I was ready to pull the trigger on him myself, a few times.

Sam: Dont let me get on your bad side. (Beacon, S6E21)


Notice Callens refusal to call Arkady a friend. In previous conversations they have had an easy banter, Arkady was concerned about Callen enough to let federal agents arrest him, and Callen trusted him to watch his back; these are all things friends would do. Add to that Callens unwillingness to accept that Arkady is dead and it seems he doth protest too much. Sam knows Callen is stonewalling him and hes letting him, also knowing its hard for Callen to deal with how he feels about the former KGB officer.




Later, the formerly-known-as-dead Arkady comes to them for help. We dont yet know how that has happened, but maybe we can piece together the story that brought him to this point. Lets take a look back at that conversation earlier in Season 6, The Third Choir (S6E04), which may be whats led to this attempt on Arkadys life.



(Sam and Callen enter gym)

Callen: Not answering your phone?

Arkady: Ive been busy. How did you find me?

Sam: Your ex-wife’s sister.

Arkady: Which one?

Callen: Svetlana.

Arkady: Aah, she always talked too much. Must be genetic.

Callen: Arkady, what are you doing here?

Arkady: My doctor told me to join gym.

Sam: Yeah? Probably expected you to work out.

Arkady: Im between sets.

Arkady: In case you haven’t noticed, Cold War is back, only it’s not so cold lately. And for someone like your Hetty who has a head full of secrets they’d love to get their hands on, this is just the beginning.

Sam: What does that mean?

Arkady: I mean, it will get worse before it gets better, and your Hetty won’t be the only target.

Sam: Who else will they go after?

Arkady: Use your imagination.

Callen: We’re not playing around, Arkady. Who else will they go after?

Arkady: I don’t know! And to be honest, I don’t care. I’ve got my own problems.

Callen: We will be your problem if you don’t start to level with us.

Arkady: You don’t scare me – but they do, because I am one of the people they will come after.

(Callen and Sam turn to leave)

Sam: Don’t strain yourself.

The Third Choir (S6E04)


In the past, its been Callen who has turned to Arkady for help to solve a case, except for in Tin Soldiers. Here the tables have turned, its Callen and the teams turn to help Arkady. However, he might not be the only one in trouble. Arkady might be the canary in the mine of buried secrets; his attempted murder is signalling that its not safe for those who carry old knowledge of a past war that may not be over.


How do you think this new information ties into previous storylines like Hettys attempted kidnapping and the mole? With the team heading to Russia before the season ends, do you think Arkady will appear again? Do you want him to? Share your ideas in the comments.




Lets take a look back at each episode so far with Arkady Kolcheck


Season 1 Pushback (S1E07)

Callen suspects that Arkady was the one behind his shooting (NCIS Legends episodes), only to find that he had sent his foster sister, Alina Rostoff to warn him.


Season 2 Tin Soldiers (S2E15)

Arkady sends Niko to see if Callen is living in the old Rostoff home and wants him to look into something for him. At the end of the episode, we see Callen and Arkady caught up in a battle and having each others back.


Season 3 Neighborhood Watch (S3E22)

The team needed information with regards to a Russian sleeper agent. He reacts to one of the women in the photos, but distracts Callen and Sam. This is the first time Arkady helps Callen with a case and not just personal matters.


Arkady: She resembles my ex.

Callen: Which one?

Arkady: The one who recently passed, God rest her soul.

Callen: Aren’t they all dead?

Arkady: I do not have best luck with women.

Sam: Think how they feel.

Arkady (to Callen about Sam): I do not like him.


Season 4 Rude Awakenings (S4E06)

Sam and Callen meet with Arkady down a lane way to inquire about who might have stolen the nukes and killed the Russian sleeper agents.


(Referring to Sidorov) Arkady: It’s a delicate subject matter.

Arkady: Don’t judge. Morally corrupt people are my business!

Arkady: Oh, don’t be naive. We both spent decades pointing nuclear weapons at each other’s children.


Season 4 Wanted (S4E17)

But Arkady is needed again when a Russian is found dead with his index finger cut off.


Arkady: You two still together. That’s nice. You’ve lasted longer than any of my marriages. What is secret?

Arkady: Why would I know? Because I’m Russian? We all look the same to you? You think I know everything every Russian is doing in this state?

Callen: Only the criminals.

Arkady: That hurts.


Season 5 Reznikov, N (S5E04)

When the Comescus kidnap a man whom they believe to be Callens father, he turns to Arkady for help.


(At Arkadys home, hes enters the house, on his mobile)

Arkady: Fine, fine. You do that. And when you come back to me to complain about them, remember what I told you -I know, I know. It’s just business. But when you come back to me, price is double. Yes, it’s just business.

(He opens the fridge – grabs a gun and wheels around)

Arkady: I should tell you, I’m having bad day. Come out slowly.

(Callen makes himself seen)

Arkady: You trying to get yourself killed?

Callen: Not with that gun.

(Callen shows the shells from Arkadys weapon)

Arkady: Now you leave me defenceless against my enemies.

Callen: Who leaves a gun in the fridge?

Arkady: We all do. How did you get in?

Callen: Parked the car in the back alley, jumped the fence. You’ve got a security camera blind spot by your pool.

Arkady: Thanks for finding it.

(Callen hands a photo of a younger Arkady with Reinhardt)

Callen: That bring back some memories?

Arkady: Im more handsome now. Richer.

Arkady: Ask the real question. The one you came to ask me.

Callen: Is this my father?

Arkady: No one has ever introduced themselves to me as your father. So maybe he is, maybe he isnt.

Arkady: Do I owe you favor?

Callen: No. But when this is done – Im gonna owe you one.

Arkady: Then it is business.

(Arkady loads his gu and its it into the small of his back)

Arkady: Ay-yi! Gun is still cold.

Arkady: My brother-in-law’s car.

Callen: It may get a little rough.

Arkady: Is okay. I don’t like him anyway.

(Boat Shed)

Kensi: Sit down.

Arkady: No, after you.

(Kensi glares at Arkady)

Arkady: Okeydokey, dokey, dokey. No niceties today.

Kensi: Where’s Callen?

Arkady: I don’t know.

Kensi: :Okay, we found you beside a car with two men who’d been shot to death. We swabbed you for gun residue. And when that’s processed, what do you think we’re gonna find?

Arkady: :That I fired weapon. Self-defense. Agent Callen will tell you same thing.

Deeks: Well, then you better hope we find him alive, pal,’cause he’s the only friend that’s gonna vouch for you.

Arkady: I don’t know where he is. I know what he went to do, and I can truthfully say I don’t know where he went to do it.

Deeks: Why’d you wait with the bodies? You could have been long gone by the time we got there.

Arkady: Because I wanted you to know what happened, what Callen was going to do.

Kensi: Why?

Arkady: Because Callen is a friend of mine and I don’t want him to die today.


These two have had an interesting history. At first, they appear to not care for the other and Callen in particular has trust issues with Arkady. But when it comes down to it, when it really matters, it appears that these two men really do care for each other. Share your take on their relationship in the comments.


Thanks to Hypnoweb for the quotes and Bee for her help in putting this post together.

Callen’s Corner: Callen and Kensi – Undercover

Since the pilot episode back in 2009, we’ve come to love the characters on NCIS Los Angeles. They’re brave, silent heroes who will do what it takes to keep Los Angeles safe. They belong to a secret team where their true identities are kept hidden, so they can infiltrate gangs, terrorist groups and organisations with ease. Well they sure do make it look easy. But at what cost?

With Deeks and Kensi taking the bold step in becoming more than partners, we’ve seen some shuffling of the team in recent episodes. It’s been a long time since we’ve seen Callen and Kensi go out into the field or deep undercover, so this week’s episode of Rage (S6, E20) was interesting and brought back memories of the series’ first season.

The promo had everyone talking about Kensi going in as a tattooed bikie and Callen’s alias, Steven Wolinski’s girlfriend, Sage. (Is this a deliberate choice due to Deeks’ pet name for Kensi of Fern, I wonder?). Callen and Kensi heated it up for the White Supremacist group that Callen had returned to jail to infiltrate. They’re watching him closely after his 6 months stint in an isolation cell. Did anyone else have their eyes widen at that kiss?

We thought that it would be fun to take a look back at previous occasions on when Callen and Kensi went undercover together.

In Season 1, we saw Callen and Kensi go undercover a few times. Let’s start back in Keepin’ It Real (E06). Kensi lured their suspect into a bar to introduce him to Callen, aka, Canadian, Gordon Taymis. Gordon wass supposedly having an affair with Kensi’s alias, and they held hands in the bar to make their point. Gordon needed more money, seeing he had a wife and kids back home to support as well. They got the job, only to have Callen burned when the dead Marine’s commander turned up.

Callen had an opportunity to find out who was behind his shooting, in Pushback (E07). Callen and Kensi went into a gas company as environmental inspectors, only to find that the person running the place was an old colleague of Callen’s who was supposed to be dead.

In Random on Purpose (E09), they entered a law firm acting as if they were both filing for divorce. The tension was high between them and they performed this act brilliantly, in order to rescue Abby Scuito from a psycho killer.

Kensi and Callen went undercover again in Missing (E13), when Kensi pretended to be the Columbians’ sister, Claudia Tauro. She entered an abandoned hospital with Callen, to help rescue Dom.

Callen, Sam and Kensi were trying to stop a Turkish ship from leaving port with a terrorist onboard, in Hunted (E22). They pretended to be drunk, to knock the guard out, so they can enter the ship and find their target. Kensi kissed Callen on the cheek and undid a button, revealing more flesh for the performance.

We met Deeks for the first time in Hand to Hand (E19), when Callen helped Kensi get out from Deeks’ questioning when he found her inside the victim’s home. Not knowing who he was at the time, Callen knocked on the door, dressed as a taxi driver to take her somewhere.

Deeks arranged with his contact to help the team get inside an elite club, in Fame (E20). They were looking for a missing socialite, who was the last to see a dead Naval Officer, whose body was found in her vehicle. Callen entered dressed as some rich guy named Ivan, with Kensi as his date. They found the girl and those who killed the Naval Officer.

In Season 2, we saw Callen and Kensi dressed up for a function onboard a cruise ship in Anonymous (E07), while Sam helped their only witness to help them find the men who had new faces, before they kill everyone on board.

With Deeks on the team as Kensi’s partner, it took a while before we saw these two work together again, in Season 3. In Backstopped (E03), we saw Callen and Kensi paired up by Hunter and Callen pulled himself out of the SUV, car sick from her driving. But we’ve not seen them undercover since Anonymous (S2,E07), until this week’s episode, Rage (S6, E20). Is Hetty testing the waters to see if Kensi can still perform her undercover work and be Callen’s girlfriend, although she is in a relationship with Deeks? No one knows the thinking behind Hetty, but we are glad that Kensi was able to get the information out of Dallas’ girlfriend to find Callen in time to save him.

Love to know your thoughts on this decision to bring these two back together again. Will we see more of these two undercover together in the future?

Callen’s Corner: Adjusting to Deeks



There has been much discussion during Season 5 over Callen’s attitude towards Detective Marty Deeks, after he told him “I don’t want you here.” But if we look into the history and the circumstances around the two, that is not what Callen is really saying. From the beginning, Callen has been pretty much on the sidelines with the issues Sam has held for Deeks. Tension was between these two, not Callen and Deek; although, Callen has joined in the banter to tease the detective over the years. Callen was being Team Leader, ensuring that Deeks was truly ready to return to the team, before anyone’s lives were put at risk. From the beginning, we’ve seen Callen stick up for Deeks to Sam:

Callen: “Maybe he grows on you.”
Sam: “Like ringworm.” (Borderline 2×02)

An interesting moment happened early on in Fame (1×20), that most probably became vital for Callen to trust Deeks on their team. Hetty chose him:

Callen to Hetty about Deeks: “You don’t want him as a liaison, you want him as an agent.”

Callen: You do your homework, don’t you?… In choosing agents. Deeks didn’t end up in this building because we need some LAPD liaison. You’ve been watching him for a while.”
Hetty: “There is a value in being patient.”

These two men appear to have some similarities in their background, which have made them great at undercover work. Yet, Deeks is known with his gift of the gab, whereas Callen only talks if he needs to. They are like the LA version to their DC counterparts: DiNozzo and Gibbs. Over the years we’ve seen Gibbs head slap DizNozzo, only to discover he loves him as a son. The relationship between Callen and Deeks is more of an older brother relationship, where both men have encountered similarities in their background of having it tough and growing up in foster care. This was reflected recently in Between the Lines (5×17):

Deeks: “You know what? I’ve always wondered what it would be like having two older brothers that I hated.” [Spreads hands out] “Now I know.”


Callen has played the big brother role with Deeks over the years and this was evident in his advice to Deeks in Between the Lines. “Thanks Dad.”

On the outside, Deeks appeared in the early days on the team to be struggle for acceptance. But the truth was he knew they trusted him. Although tension simmered underneath between Sam and Deeks, Callen trusted him. He proved his worth when he saved Callen in Fame (1×20):

Deeks: “Oh, come on. What? You got some sort of Superman double back flip where you can dodge bullets? I mean you can’t tell me I shouldn’t have taken that shot.”
Callen: “No. I’m glad you did.”

From the look on Callen’s face, he was thankful for Deeks saving him.

Callen went in unarmed to help rescue Deeks from Lazik in Human Traffic (2×01), pretending to be a drug dealer, trusting Sam and Kensi to have their backs. Callen, Sam and Kensi ignored Deeks punching his boss for his words over Jess Trainer and getting her killed to save his own self from bring caught.

Callen trusted Deeks to have Kensi’s back, and we all remember back in Identity (1×01), that Kensi was Callen’s favourite agent. And we cannot forget that Deeks proved his loyalty to Callen when he followed him to Prague and Romania to rescue Hetty.

From the beginning, it was Callen, Sam and Kensi against Deeks, but over time, as Kensi and Deeks grew together as partners, Callen and Sam have learnt to respect him, even through their differences. There have been some funny moments when Deeks has put his mouth in it, such as when he refered to Callen and Sam as being old. Callen and Sam found it hard to refuse giving him a ribbing over it. Not to mention Callen teaching Deeks a lesson early on with the team in Fame (1×20). When Callen realised that Hetty had put a $5,000 limit on a $50,000 credit card, he ordered more champagne.

Hetty: “$50,000 limit. However, *if* more than $5000 is charged to this card, I will come for you with my letter opener. Is that clear Mr. Deeks?”
Deeks: “Got it. Wait, what? You want me to sign this? Cause it’s Cal – it’s Callen’s card.”
Hetty: “You’re the guarantor.”

Later in the club:

Callen: “I’m supposed to look like I can spend 50 and she’s got you on the hook after 5?”
Deeks: “She threatened me with a letter opener!”
Callen: “I guess some people gotta learn the hard way.”
Deeks: “Why? What are you-?”
Callen: [Loudly to a waitress] “We’ll take 2 more bottles.”

They’ve come a long way, and we have seen glimpses of moments where Callen and Deeks appear to be on the same page at odds with Sam, which highlights their similarities to their lives:
Fallout (5×08):
Sam is talking about his “DIY” efforts, whereas Callen and Deeks agree that they would prefer sipping a mojito while watching the guy they paid to do the work. The scene ends with both of them saying, “That’s what I’m talking about.” And again when they are talking about Christmas cards this season; it’s Deeks and Callen who are on the same page, not Callen and Sam. In Fish out of Water (5×16), we saw them bantering like we normally would see from Callen and Sam.

Harm’s Way:

I believe that Callen and Deeks have much more in common that is visible on first sight. They both had a difficult childhood, at LAPD Deeks was some kind of a loner, too – at least he did not have much friends. And both men are afraid of needles (especially when Hetty is administering them – now who wouldn’t. She scares the hell out of me too). It would be interesting to see the two work together a little more, as we’ve seen very few moments of these two bachelors working side by side. Would you like to see more of Callen and Deeks being partnered up during an operation? Let us know by filling in our poll.

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Thank you to Bee, ChrisDaisy, Keviana and Richtsje for their help in the research for this post.

Callen’s Corner: Treasure Box


Have you ever wondered why Callen’s most precious items of his past and links to his family, such as the photo of his mother and him with Alina Rostoff are in a tea box on the fireplace mantel? One would think seeing Callen doesn’t have any family in his life nor much of anything of value to him, that the items in Callen’s treasure box would be hidden somewhere safe, such as under a loose floor board. So when intruders enter, they don’t see what’s hidden in there? Such as when the Romani Gypsy Arkady sent to find him and was caught prowling around in G’s house with a flashlight. He went straight to the mantel and opened the box. Messing with G’s treasure box might be what got him beat up, bound, and locked in the trunk of Callen’s car.

Therefore, I decided to do some research into why he has it on display on the mantel. I was intrigued to discover an article of Feng Shui, which states where to place what in a room. On the centre left:

“Family and health. Harness this area for better relationships, since this also extends to coworkers. You can put pictures of your family or souvenirs from family vacations here, or anything special relating to your family.” (Feng Shui)

This is exactly what Callen has done. So have we discovered something new about the enigmatic seasoned Federal Agent? That he has studied the art of Feng Shui? With all that time awake during the night from his insomnia, he needs to keep himself occupied somehow right? Well let’s briefly look at another guideline to this living room in Callen’s house for more evidence.

Lower left: Knowledge. Knowledge is the sector of your room involving wisdom. Naturally, one should place objects pertaining to wisdom; for example, books. (Feng Shui)

And that is precisely where Callen has placed his books and chessboard; in the lower left side of the room.

Now that we’ve covered why Callen has placed his treasure chest on the mantel, let’s take a look at how he came to having this box and what is in it.

It all began back in season 1 when Callen discovered the truth about the girl he saw just before he was shot. She had been his foster sister Alina, who Arkady Kolcheck sent to warn him. She died in trying to seek revenge over his death (as she had seen him shot, not realising that he had actually survived the shooting). Such a sad beginning to the story behind G Callen, but from that, we learnt a little behind the man Arkady, who we have seen appear now and then when Callen needs him. He provided Callen through back channels to Hetty with an envelope and inside was a photo of a much younger G Callen lifting a four year old Alina into the air. Happy times for the man who had little to be joyful over in his life. He had nothing to keep this photo safe in, so he removed the tea bags out of the tea box in front of him and placed the photo inside, claiming it as his treasure box. Was it just a convenience that he chose that tea box? Or did it remind him of the many special moments he’d had with Hetty whom had become the closest that he’d had to a mother?

Once he obtained ownership of the Rostoff home, the first thing Callen did, was place the tea box on the mantel, which is where it has stayed ever since. Since then, we have seen Callen add small items to it over the years. From the small card that he found on his sister’s grave in ‘Callen, G’ (1-24), the toy soldier left on his sister’s grave in ‘Tin Soldiers’ (2-15), photo of his mother Clara Callen, given to him by Hetty in ‘Deadline’ (3-04) and more recently the photos and film strip found in Michael Rhinehart’s closet, in ‘Reznikov N’ (5-04)

They are the only links Callen has to the happiest times of his life: his past and family. It contains his most treasured items that proves that he was loved, and hopefully one day will provide him with his unanswered questions: who is he and whom is his family. Although he has some pieces to the puzzle over his past, he is left with more questions: What does the G stand for? Who and where is his father? Each scene that involves the few items that are contained in the box bring about the most emotional scenes we’ve seen from Callen, who usually has walls built around his heart.

The cave you fear to enter
holds the treasure you seek

[Joseph Campbell]

The box was first used in ‘Pushback’ (1-07) when Callen received a picture from Arkady Kolcheck of Alina ‘my little sister’.


In ‘Deadline’ (3-04) Hetty finally revealed to Callen that she knew his mother. She gave him an envelope containing a few bits and pieces about his past. The episode ends with G sitting cross-legged on the floor of his house. The tea box is beside him. The lid is open and its contents are arranged on the floor next to him. He studies the documents found in the envelope Hetty has given him, comparing information in one of the pages to the small book containing the handwritten list of his foster homes. The last item he discovers is a picture of his beautiful mother.

“I’ve got a small box of memories,
that I’ll never let go.
It’s all, it’s all just a jigsaw.
Even as I get older, there’s still so much that I don’t know.

Wish there was more than this empty feeling,
that comes at a cost.
Maybe once you loved me.
Now your love is long lost.”

Long Lost – Zac Brennan

Click here to listen to Zac Brennan’s song: Long Lost

It’s interesting to note how three of the things in his box brought some sort of comfort (the photos and the film.) But the other 2 just brought more questions. We know now about the tin solder. But do we know who left the card on the grave? Was it the Michael Rhinehart (5-04 ‘Reznikov, N’) who was watching out for them? If so, why does he say, “My daughter?” Or was it his father? And if so, why hasn’t he made contact with Callen as yet?

I believe Callen keeps all his most treasured possessions in the tea box (besides keeping them together safely protected inside) for easy removal if he needs to run. We know about Callen’s past with the constant moves. He doesn’t settle or feel safe in any one place for long. This is the longest he’s stayed anywhere, thanks to Hetty.

We would love to hear your thoughts on Callen’s treasure box.

Many thanks to ChrisDaisy, Richtsje, Mary and sindee for their input into this post; and to Zac Brennan, for his song, Long Lost.

Callen’s Corner: Winners of Challenge #4


Over the past six weeks we have been thoroughly entertained by nine stories that have led us around the world to Russia, Mexico, Morocco, the Middle East, Libya and around Los Angeles. But one thing was found in common; Sam having to rescue his partner, the infamous G Callen. We have been left on the edge of our seats, cried, gasped, cringed, squirmed and sighed with relief when Sam came to the rescue and brought Callen home safe, and comforted him as he healed from his injuries. The closeness of their brotherhood, which extends past their partnership is evident on the show and in all of these great stories. The variety and originality in many of these stories have been outstanding. Well done to a great success for this challenge.

It was great to see some new entrants, braving to post their first story on FanFiction or for their first time entering Callen’s Corner challenge. For those who have participated before, we saw them grow as writers and it has been a joy to read your hard work as well as the many reviews all of you readers left for the writers. The standard for this challenge was high. I would like to congratulate Keviana, CALLEN37, I Feel Possessed, Motsie of Atlantis, ilse23, knirbenrots, mckenna4, Keesha and Shaz1 for participating in the fourth challenge and for all of your hard work. Without it, this challenge would not have been the success it has been. Thank you all very much. Unfortunately, there can only be one winner, although we had many favourites.

CONGRATULATIONS to I Feel Possessed for your story ’Always in my Thoughts.’ Your story was very well written with great portrayal of the characters on the show, leaving us riveted on the edge of our seats as we waited for the drama to unfold. You brought in Callen’s lone wolf tendencies and the story became really intense with Callen being in serious trouble. Chapter five was brilliant with bringing his foster years into the mix, with a great ending and saving of Callen by Sam and Deeks in the final chapter. As many reviewers have commented, we would all really love a sequel to this story please. I will be contacting you soon regarding your prize.

Congratulations to skippy1967 for their most heartfelt reviews. Could skippy1967 please send me your email address so a prize can be sent to you. You can reach me by sending a PM to: BH72 on FanFiction.

Now for an extract of the winning entry:

Always In My Thoughts Chapter 1

“Turn away from us
days are darker and the winters come
can’t remove yourself from what you have done
on the rack where your reputation lies”

Recluse, Neil Finn [Dizzy Heights] 2014

“Do you two have a problem communicating?” Sam asked Callen as they strolled in to the bullpen shortly before 9.30am.

“What? You mean me and the little dummer boy over there?” Callen glanced at Deeks who was already seated at his desk, practicing drum rolls with two pencils.

“You talking about me?” Deeks asked, his face a picture of pure concentration as he attempted to drum faster and faster.

“I am,” Callen replied. “But I have no idea who or what Sam’s talking about. Personally, I think he’s the one with the communication problems.”

“No G,” Sam rolled his eyes in frustration. “You just choose to play ignorant or dumb or whatever the hell it is you do.”

“Ah, sounds like we’re all going to have a great morning,” Deeks commented as he abruptly stopped drumming and started using a single pencil to baton twirl through his fingers.

“I agree,” Callen nodded his head, placing his bag on his desk and easing into his chair. “Did you get out of the wrong side of the bed again, big guy?”

Sam froze half way to seating himself and stared at Callen. For the tenth time that morning he wondered what he had done that was so bad he deserved a partner like Callen.

“Are you actually going to sit down or are you demonstrating how strong your thigh muscles are?” Callen opened the lid of his laptop and suppressed the smile that threatened to break through. Sometimes Sam just asked for it, figuratively speaking of course.

Sam sat down, slamming his palm on the desk, causing Deeks’ pencil to spin to the floor. He stared at Callen before asking. “You do know I can kill someone using my legs? I can demonstrate on you now or later. It’s your choice G.”

Callen leaned back in his chair and folded his arms. “Strangely enough Sam, I have no desire to go anywhere near your legs – or any other part of your anatomy.”

Deeks grabbed a rubber band and started pulling it through his fingers. “Y’know I’m so pleased to see that your ‘bromance’ hasn’t died.”

Sam turned to face Deeks. “I could always demonstrate on you as well…”

“Oooh no no no! I didn’t mean that, what I meant was that I miss not having a partner to banter with.” Deeks backtracked quickly, snapping the elastic band sharply on to his trigger finger.

Sam held his gaze on Deeks before slowly exhaling. He reached in to his jeans pocket and pulled out his cell. He unlocked the phone, tapped the message icon and turned the screen towards Callen.

“Joelle,” he said expectantly.

“Hmm,” Callen responded without looking up from his laptop. Recently this is all Sam wanted to talk about and while it was fun to wind Sam up, Callen really wanted his private life to stay that way.

“Why is she texting me and not you?” Sam pressed.

“I don’t know,” Callen said, his focus remaining on the laptop screen. “Maybe she wants to talk to you about me. Isn’t that what you two normally do?”

“See what I mean Deeks?” Sam called for some moral support. “They have a problem communicating. It’s been what, a month? I’m surprised you don’t still need me to book your restaurants for you and then invite Joelle on your behalf.”

“Ok,” Callen gave up and closed his laptop. “You have my undivided attention.”

“That’ll be a first,” Sam muttered just loudly enough for Callen to hear. “Joelle wants to know if you’re a fan of Alexandre Dumas.”

“Ha,” Deeks laughed suddenly. “Do you think she’s into role play? We know Kensi loves a little bit of dressing up… Maybe she wants you to wear an iron mask.”

Sam broke into a smile as he considered Deeks’ words for a moment. “He could be right you know. But maybe you want her to wear the iron mask. It wasn’t that long ago G, you admitted you would pay a dominatrix to hurt you.”

Callen shot Sam a look that could have killed.

“What? No!” Deeks looked to Sam then back to Callen. “Where was I when this gem of information was leaked?”

“Thankfully, you weren’t around,” Callen answered. “Why would she want to know if I’m a fan of Alexandre Dumas?”

“Well it seems an anonymous package arrived at her door this morning, marked for her attention but with no return address.”


“And nothing. Did you order her a book?”

“Why would I do that?” Callen was genuinely puzzled.

“How about as a gift?” Sam shook his head slightly. He had seen Callen go undercover and turn on so much charm and charisma he practically had women eating out of his hands. But when it came to real life; his own life…

“What was the book?” Callen’s attention was now fully on Sam and he smiled. He was sure there was some significance to Sam’s frustration and about the author that he was failing to grasp. However the journey to his enlightenment was so far quite amusing.

“A dog-eared paperback version of The Count of Monte Cristo,” Sam replied. “No expense spared, which sounds just like you.”

The smug grin which had been present on Callen’s face disappeared as he stared at Sam. “The Count of Monte Cristo? That was Joelle’s parcel?”

“Yeah…” Sam noticed the immediate change in Callen and could feel the tension emanating from him. “Why? What does that mean?”

Callen stood abruptly, pulled out his cell and walked to the outside door for privacy as he dialled Joelle’s number.

“G?” Sam called after him.

“What was that about?” Deeks asked Sam.

“I have no idea but he’d better fill me in the second he comes back…”

Several minutes later Callen returned to the bullpen. He hesitated slightly and Sam took advantage of Callen’s apparent unease and indecision.

“So what’s going on G?”

“Nothing’s going on Sam. But I need to duck out for thirty minutes, so I’ll catch up with you guys shortly.” Callen glanced at Deeks and Sam, quickly noting their confusion as he turned away.

Before Callen had walked more than three paces Sam caught him by the arm, halting his hasty retreat.

“Where are you going?” Sam demanded. Deeks had also risen from his chair and stood at Sam’s shoulder, presenting a united front against their team leader who was clearly on the verge of ditching them.

“I won’t be long,” Callen reasoned. “I’ll be back before Hetty even knows I’m gone.”

“Hetty knows everything, she’s like the Eye of Providence,” Deeks said. “The all-seeing eye of God.”

“Why does this involve Joelle? And what’s so special about the Count of Monte Cristo?” Sam persisted in his interrogation of Callen. He was not letting him out of his sight before finding out what was really going on.

“Indeed Mr Callen,” the authoritative voice of Henrietta Lange broke through Sam’s thoughts and he instinctively let go of Callen’s arm. “What is so special about The Count of Monte Cristo that means you have to return before I realise you ever disappeared?”

“Nothing Hetty, I just need to run an errand.”

“For your erm, lady-friend?” Hetty peered up at him through her thick-rimmed glasses.

Callen looked at Sam who just shook his head.

“You really think I’m gonna come to your rescue? Have you done something to put Joelle in danger?” Sam raised his voice as he jumped to his own conclusions. “If anything happens to her-”

To continue reading this story, please go to:

Many thanks to Keviana, CALLEN37, I Feel Possessed, Motsie of Atlantis, ilse23, knirbenrots, mckenna4, Keesha and Shaz1 for all of their hard work.

Thanks to ChrisDaisy (my partner in crime on here) for her help in the judging process.