A couple of years later, Chuck and Casey are back in California. General Beckman has asked Casey to train up a young field agent, and Casey finds he is unable to say no, especially as the General tells him he can bring 'Pete' along too.

He meets the agent at her workplace; she has kept up her pre-NSA job as for some reason it appears to be an excellent cover.

Before he can say more than hello, someone barrels into him, and quick as blinking, he has them in an armlock.

'Ow! Ow, ow, ow! You can let go now, Casey,' Morgan wheezes, and with a hint of a smile Casey does so.

'Grimes. You still here?'

'Yeah, man. I quit for six months, but I had to come back to my Anna, you know? She needs me.' The look Morgan gives his wife is full of pride.

'Ms Wu,' Casey nods in respect, one professional to another.

'Always a pleasure,' Anna purrs. 'I'll be in the home theatre room in five minutes.'

Morgan watches her sashay through the DVD section causing at least one customer to drop their selections on the floor.

'That's my girl,' he says happily, then turns back to Casey. 'So what are you doing back here? Come to take up your old position as the scariest guy in Burbank? Did Big Mike call you in? Because I gotta tell you, I have Jeff and Lester under control. That thing with the sprinkler system? Never happening again.'

Casey shakes his head. 'Nah, I was in the neighbourhood. You want to get a beer after work, you and Anna? I was going to invite Ellie and Captain Awesome, but they appear to have moved.'

Morgan shakes his head sadly. 'Yeah, they got a house a little further out. They have a daughter now, Caroline, just six months old, can you believe it? I have the number if you want it.'

Casey already has the number, has driven by the house and seen Ellie through the window, feeding her baby, but he nods and says, 'Thanks, I'd appreciate it.'

Morgan dictates it from memory, then spies Big Mike bearing down. 'Gotta go sell stuff. Anna and I get off at six. Tell you what, how about we see you at seven?' He names a bar not too far away, and as Casey grunts, Morgan hurries off to go pester a customer.

Casey shakes Big Mike's hand, agrees when the man tells him he's looking well, and still manages to meet Anna in the home entertainment room to arrange training session times with her. General Beckman looks down from the plasma screen tv on the wall.

'Nice to see you again, Major,' she says, before cutting the connection.

'I always knew there was something more to you, Johnny,' Anna says. 'You'll have to tell me why you were stationed here some time.'

Casey looks at her, his face deadpan, and says, 'I could tell you, but I'd have to kill you.' He waits a beat before adding, 'And Grimes would be a real pain in my ass.'

Anna grins.

Later, in the bar, Casey buys a round. Ellie and Devon have come along too, at Casey's insistence, bringing a sleeping baby with them in a car seat. They have a booth, tucked around a corner in the back. It's as quiet and private as Casey can make it.

'John, how have you been?' Ellie asks, bending to kiss him on the cheek before sliding into the booth beside Anna.

'Good, actually.'

He shakes hands with Devon. It looks as though parenthood is suiting the couple, and he's glad.

'So where did you get to? Morgan said you went travelling, and we never heard from you,' Ellie says.

Casey smiles. 'Actually, I didn't get that far.'

Devon beams. 'You met someone? Awesome!'

'That's going to be Carrie's first word,' Morgan mutters to Anna, who nudges him in the ribs. 'Ow! I was just saying!'

They all laugh at Morgan, then Ellie puts her hand over Casey's. 'So, tell me all about her. What's her name? How did you meet? Is she here?'

Casey leans back. 'About that...' he says, and a slim figure slides into the booth beside him, face partially hidden by a baseball cap.

Chuck takes off the cap and looks around at his family, his friends. He swallows hard. 'Hi,' he whispers, and a long moment passes while they stare at him, amazed.

Ellie cries and punches him in the shoulder, then hugs him so tightly Chuck fears for his ribs. Devon sits back and waits until it becomes clear that Chuck needs a little rescuing, then he puts a hand on Ellie's arm and says, 'Hey, babe, how about you let him tell us what happened.'

Morgan is silent and Anna casts him a worried glance.

At last Chuck can breathe again, but it's a minute before he has his voice under control enough to speak. He leans into Casey for support, and the hand the older man puts on his arm tells everyone that this is the relationship Casey found.

'I can't tell you most of it,' Chuck says, and pauses to sip at a glass of water. 'It has to do with computers and government secrets and it's so highly classified that there actually aren't many people in the country allowed to know about it.'

'Is this because of your job at the Buy More?' Ellie asks, incredulous.

Chuck shakes his head. 'Not really. But I actually did get to save the world, just like Superman.'

Casey looks at him with pride, and that gives him the strength to continue.

'It also put me and all of you in danger, and when that got too much, Casey got me out. Kind of like the witness protection program, only it was for your protection too.'

'But I did CPR and I couldn't save you!' Ellie begins, then stops suddenly, and tears run down her cheeks again. Caroline, sensing her mother's distress, wakes and begins to cry. Devon lifts her out of the car seat to comfort her, and Chuck looks longingly at her.

'Can I - could I hold her, do you think?'

Devon hands her over, and Chuck finds himself gazing into the perfect little face of his neice. She stops crying and stares up at him with eyes as dark as his own.

'She's beautiful,' he breathes, and looks up, flashing a smile that stops Casey's heart for just a second.

'She is,' Devon agrees, and murmurs of assent come from around the table.

Casey takes over. 'I'm sorry, Ellie. I couldn't let you know then, and we can't tell you any more about it now. It would have gotten Chuck and me killed, maybe you and Devon too.'

'And now? What happens now?'

Chuck looks at Casey, who says, 'Meet Pete Kaminsky. My fiance.'

Later, when they're all getting ready to leave the bar, Chuck stops Morgan. 'I'm so, so sorry, buddy. You have no idea how much I wanted to be able to tell you.'

Morgan nods. 'You were James Bond, I get it.'

Chuck laughs. 'Less Bond than the guy Bond has to rescue.' He puts a hand on Morgan's shoulder. 'Are you okay?'

Morgan forces a smile, which turns into a real one. 'Yeah, yeah I am. My best friend just came back from the dead. How could I not be okay with that?' He wraps his arms around Chuck, hugging away the pain of the last two years.

Looking up, he asks, 'So are you happy? Really? With John Casey, who is apparently far scarier than we all thought?'

Chuck nods. 'Yeah, I am.'

Ellie kisses John on the cheek again as she leaves. 'Thank you,' she whispers. 'Thank you for saving my little brother. Take good care of him, John.'

Casey nods, understanding that she may never forgive him for the pain he's caused, but she can live with it because now her brother is here, alive and well and happy. He hugs her and whispers back, 'I'll always be here to catch him when he falls.'