AN: Written super quick - a result of being home from school sick.

'Was it somewhere embarrassing?'

That smile. He knew it all too well - he'd seen it far too often. That little sad smile that said yes but there's a story. A sad story. And he hated when she used that smile, because it meant that she was hurting but she wasn't going to tell him; her walls were built too strong.

5 YEARS EARLIER

It was meant to be a quick in and out. It was only her second time undercover - she wouldn't be there if there was a big risk. Just get close to the guy, get him to lead her to where he had the naval lieutenant and Callen, Sam and Renko would swoop in and arrest him and his cronies. Only when she went out the back door of the club, there wasn't the Mercedes that she knew Ramierez owned, just a black van and pain as she was struck in the back of the head with the end of a pistol. By the time the guys had made it to the alley, she and Ramierez were gone, along with any trace of them.

Back at ops, Eric was attempting to find the van with kaleidoscope and after relentless efforts found it turning down a dead end street in an industrial area, and it still hadn't come back out. Kensi's phone had been switched off so that was no way to track her so they had to find her the hard way: checking every building in that street. When they came to the forth one, and circled around the back, they found the van.

Entering hot and heavy, a firefight broke out. Apparently Ramierez had quite a few more henchmen than they had suspected. Once the three agents and the rest of the SWAT team had taken out what they thought was all of the men, they heard more gunshots from the other side of the building.

She had been struggling with Ramierez and a gun and as the inexperienced agent in training; she was fighting a losing battle. She was exhausted and still woozy from the head wound but she soldiered on… until she felt the gun pressed up against her ribcage with the flinch of his trigger finger. She'd wrestled the gun, so it was no longer pointing towards her heart, rather up towards her left breast. The gun fired.

When Callen, Sam and Renko burst, guns blazing into the small room, 6 rounds made their way into Ramirez as they saw their fallen agent on the floor bleeding out. As they rushed to Kensi, they realized the horror of her injury. The bullet had gone into her left breast from the bottom, passed through and exited at the top, and move on to graze the side of her head. She had already lost consciousness. When Sam felt for a pulse, he found one… just.

They had made it to the hospital in record timing, with Renko driving and Kensi draped over Callen and Sam in the back seat, who were working to staunch the bleeding. Sam's hands held his shirt over her head wound, and Callen's cupped her breast - in any other situation he'd be turned on, but right now he was scared shitless for his agents well being. On arrival at the hospital, she was whisked away from the trio, surrounded by the flurry of doctors and nurses who had been pre-warned by Macy of their entrance and of Kensi's wounds.

Hours of surgery later they finally had news. She had made it, but there were complications. Because of the location of the wound they had consulted a plastic surgeon. They had managed to repair the tissue damage of the exit wound, but the entry wound was a different story: because of the close range and type of gun, there had been traces of gunpowder residue left in the wound, and a substantial amount of tissue had been blown off by the blast of the gun. The plastic surgeon had refused to put in an implant as the gunpowder was still having an effect on the soft tissue, an implant would seal the wound and lead to infection from the inside out. Long story short, she was missing a large chunk from the bottom of her left breast.

Kensi had been devastated when she had woken up, which had broken each of her team members' hearts. So once the risk of infection was gone, she had gone to the plastic surgeon to get an implant. Within a week of this, it was removed; her body had rejected it. Two more attempts at this surgery with the same results had broken Kensi's spirit. She was condemned to have a gaping hole in her breast for the rest of her life.

She had invested in some "chicken fillets" to wear day to day, but when she went out and went home with a guy, they would all be disinterested when they found out about this lack of allure when she was nude. If they weren't completely turned off before sex, and gave her a normal, they would never see a second date, because she was too timid to let someone know what happened or get too close. Ergo, her second date rule.

PRESENT DAY

With a sad look down to her chest she replied: 'No Deeks, I've never been shot.'