A/N - Well the time to finish this series has come.
You can thank the plot bunnies for this particular ending. I had decided to leave it at the last chapter, let Callen and Kensi live in peace and we could all assume that life was good for them. This is pretty different to the rest of the story but I like where the bunnies took this and I think wraps it up nicely.
Thank you to all who came back after my exceptionally long hiatus. Thank you to the new faces (pen names) who came along for the ride when I came back. To those who have consistently reviewed, I hope you know how much the feedback and encouragement meant to me. I know this is no longer a popular ship but I had to finish it and I'm very glad that I have kicked PND and taken something back fully.
It's been an interesting journey making a story behind the story, so to speak, for Callen and Kensi. It's been a wonderful challenge to write this which started (with Letting Go) as a gift to my readers who had given my Callen/OC stories such wonderful support even though they were diehard Callen/Kensi fans.
To write something I didn't necessarily see challenged a different side of me and I do believe it has helped me as a writer. The longer it went on the more I came to see the possibilities easier and, even though it's definitely nowhere near canon now, I like to think that what has been written in this series could've been, once upon a time.
I'll still be around kicking PND's *&^% with some more stories that got lost in the madness. Though my next Callen/OC story is purely from this return. I hope to see some of you over then when I start that journey.
Would love to know what you thought of the chapter and of the story as a whole. Thank you again.
So for the final time, enjoy.
LIVING - Epilogue
Exactly eight months from the day the stick turned pink little Michael Donovan Callen was born.
The most eager visitor his first day in the world was one angel big sister, thoroughly delighted to officially meet him, even though they'd already met. She would take her role as guardian angel/big sister very seriously and bring a whole new meaning to the term 'imaginary friend'. The times when baby Michael giggled when he was in a room on his own, would make his parents smile knowingly, because more often than not it was because of Lily.
Michael would accept his angel in his life, just as his parents accepted theirs. And even though he was technically an only child, he wasn't. He knew his big sister very well.
He was six months old the first time his angel had to put her protective skills to the test.
The enemy got too close, but she was right there with him; protecting him, keeping him calm and quiet while hiding him in plain sight, making sure they didn't see him even as they held his parents captive in the same room. She'd made sure he didn't see or hear anything that would haunt his dreams. That was the day her mother, his father's angel, revealed herself for the first time to Hetty, his grandmother in all ways but blood, to bring the cavalry while his mother's angel had watched over his parents as best he could.
It lasted no more than an hour but the effect on him would last a lifetime.
He knew without a doubt, from that moment on, she would always be with him. Always.
He also knew their angels were their special secret and that very few would believe him if he were to tell.
He liked that.
He would grow up to be a very good keeper of secrets and follow in his parents footsteps, knowing that there was always that extra special set of eyes watching over him and helping him do what needed to be done - what not many others could do.
His angel never left him and he had no qualms in admitting that the only reason he made it to retirement (after a long career filled with many a redacted mission report) was because of her.
He pushed boundaries, much like his father had. Not because of her protection and not because he didn't care whether he lived or died. But because of what his parents had instilled in him as he grew from infant to toddler, teenager to man and everything in between.
Family was important, always would be, but sometimes ... sometimes there were things that had to be done to keep more than just your own family safe and well. Someone had to keep the bad guys and girls in check. Not everyone had the skills to do it.
The steady hands and skills of his mother with a rifle, the ability to be anyone he needed to be from his father, plus his own set of unique abilities made him perfect for undercover and clandestine work. With parents like his, it wasn't unexpected.
His parents made it to old and grey and eventually found their way home to their angels, adding mores eyes to watch over him and his family.
Because yes, he had a family of his own too.
He'd found a beautiful, courageous and determined woman who wouldn't let him get away with anything. A woman who understood angels, because she had one of her own in the form of her twin sister.
But before he'd found Genevieve, he'd despaired of finding someone like his mother, someone who could understand and accept this world he lived in; danger, angels and all. His mother had told him to hold on. That one day that special someone would find him and she'd be worth the wait.
His mother was right.
He'd found Gen when he was thirty, or perhaps she'd found him, he wasn't quite sure.
Battle-scarred and broken, but alive thanks entirely to his angel, and determined to get back to his former self, Gen had pushed him, encouraged him to fight and, most memorably, told him off the first time he'd kissed her. Admittedly he'd taken advantage of a particular situation and stolen a kiss, and not one of the peck-on-the-cheek variety. The kiss had been hot and thorough and totally inappropriate for the situation they'd been in but he hadn't cared and it had been so worth it. His quick reactions had been the only thing that had stopped a slap across the face following it. She'd smiled, her small but strong arm still held by his larger hand. The smile had taken him by surprise. She told him that it was an improvement from yesterday, which confused the hell out of him until he realised what she meant.
You see, she was his physical therapist.
Not realising, just reacting, he'd caught her arm before her hand could connect with his face using his damaged arm. His shoulder and upper arm had been crushed on a mission and he had a long road ahead before he would return to active duty after the various surgeries to replace and reconstruct where necessary, not to mention the therapy.
Gen had then proceeded to tell him off for his behaviour before adding that when he could fire a gun and actually hit the target she would let him kiss her again but not before.
That had been more motivation than anything and six weeks later he'd taken her to the firing range, fired just one shot, pulled her into his arms and kissed her, throwing caution to the wind and making it just as hot and thorough as their first. At least that had been the plan. She'd kissed him back with more intensity and fire than she had the first time and the heat had skyrocket beyond his comprehension. When it was over he'd stared into her eyes and he swore he felt his heart swell in his chest as he realised he'd already fallen for her - hard. It was a moment that was seared into his mind in vivid technicolour detail. Thankfully she'd fallen for him too. She told him he already had her heart from the moment he'd kissed her that first time.
Gen gave him four children and his parents had given them the support that allowed him to continue fighting the good fight, even with the danger it brought to their lives. By the time their first grandchild had arrived, they were well and truly, (and safely), retired.
He could continue to fight because he'd known that in the unlikely event that his own angel couldn't keep him safe, his parents and their angels would be there for those he loved if he died.
That they would help them to let go, move on and live.