AUTHOR'S NOTE: Wow this has been a roller coaster of a year. I've been away from fanfiction for what feels like forever (I can't actually remember how to upload any new stories, so I hope this works lol!) I've had a complete dry spell, writing wise! And then this little idea started to nestle - actually at the beginning of the year (yes it's taken nine months to get even the first part uploaded...!) it turns out trying to get any kind of headspace to clarify half-baked ideas or write coherently was simply not possible through "lockdown". So now here we are heading almost into another new year, and it was mid-2019 I last put pen to paper (literally - I still find the ideas flow better with a pencil than a keyboard :/ )

It's a bit scary coming back after so long... I've only recently had time to start dipping in to even reading again, never mind writing. It looks like on the whole fanfiction has been quiet :( which at least gives me breathing space as this one feels like it might be quite slow. Fellow writers will understand what I mean when I say I feel over-faced by an empty page... Anyway, here we go. Just a short prologue to start. My stories tend to grow in a haphazard fashion at first! I have *so* many bubbling ideas for this one, little bits that have written themselves, and ideas that won't go away but need help to slot in somehow... they're all only just starting to lay themselves down into a 'beginning, middle and end'. I hope there are still some readers around who will join me for the ride.

Like all my stories, this is Callen-centric, though I'm pulling in a lot more characters than I have ever attempted before. It's incredibly daunting! Oh - this is kinda important - this is my first attempt at going 'off-piste' - my previous readers will know I like to work my stories into the existing fabric of the show, and stay true to our much-loved characters. This story is set in the future (yikes) somewhere around end of season 12/season 13. This does mean if I don't finish it before the actual season 12 starts there will be some assumed facts based on what we already know from season 11, and that could of course all change... In fact it already has changed - when I started writing this, Anna was still a fugitive, and not in touch with Callen. I'm not quite sure how the change in her storyline will play out in mine just yet!


THE GAME IS NOT OVER

PROLOGUE

Sam heaved himself wetly up the ladder to his boat, shaking the water from himself like a dog as he reached the deck. He realised the ringing in his ears wasn't just the usual pressure change after a dive – inside the boat, his phone was ringing. And ringing incessantly. Crossing the deck quickly, Sam unlocked the door and entered the cabin.

The phone was showing a blocked number and Sam eyed it suspiciously, leaving it to ring off, but within seconds, it was ringing again. He made the reluctant decision to answer.

There was no noise as he held the phone to his ear, and with irritation Sam said "Hello? Hello, who is this?" He was just about to give in and hang up, thinking it was a prank call, though how on earth the caller had got hold of his private number he couldn't imagine. As he moved the phone away from his ear, he heard the faintest whisper.

"Sam?"

And then the line went dead.


(I know it's very short. I'll post Chapter One as soon as possible!)