A/N: Oh my God, these one shots are a blast to write! :D I think I shall write more . . .

Okay, well, here is my own little tag to the incredible Blye, K episodes, which I finally managed to get my family to watch with me when they were re-run. I actually got inspired to write this from a Youtube video by this amazing user named PaduaGallifrey called Who You Are - Densi - Kensi - Deeks & Kensi - NCIS: Los Angeles

So yeah, I'm basically going to revisit all of the awesomesauce that was season 3.

I really wanted to post this yesterday in celebration of the re-airing of the Blye,K episodes, but my internet was down :(


Kensi Blye has had better weeks.

She's sitting on the beach, watching the waves crash onto the shore and then recede again, taking sand with it and leaving shells behind for little children to dash and pick up. Deeks was right.

She chuckles at the thought, which is quite a feat considering how drained she is right now. But nevertheless, it's true. Deeks once said that waves were life. She knows he just meant that he loves surfing, but upon reflection, he's more right than he might ever realize. The waves are like life- they crash down on you and then take away the old, leaving new scars or treasures behind in their place. And right when you get used to the new, the wave crashes into you again, leaving you raw and bare.

She feels raw and bare right now. There's no other way to describe it.

Her father's journal is in her hands. She's past the point of vigorously devouring every word written in it, now she's aimlessly flipping through the pages, reliving memories he mentions, putting faces to names. New knowledge, confusion now obliterated.

He ends every entry saying how much he loves her. One entry brought her to tears- it was a letter never sent, written to her merely five days before his death, his murder.

"Little Kens, I love you so much. I'm so very proud of the woman I see you becoming. You're not my little baby girl anymore, you are a strong, independent, amazing lady. I haven't done anything in my life to deserve a daughter like you. I miss you, I think about you every day, and I want to show you the incredible places I've seen. I hope, if you ever find out the truth about me, what I do, you'll forgive me. Everything I haven't done and everything I have, I've done because I want the world you live in to be a better place."

Tears and streaming down her face, and suddenly, she isn't Agent Blye anymore. She's just . . .

Kensi.

It's been one day since she resolved her father's murder. Since she took down Clairmont and found answers. Since she first read her father's journal. Since she showed up on her mother's doorstep.

Agent Blye returns on instinct as she hears footsteps on the sand approaching her. The gait is relaxed, crooked. She relaxes slightly, reminding herself that now, it's all over. She can relax. Until their next case, she thinks wryly.

A surfboard hits the ground next to her without grace, and one glance at it identifies its owner.

Deeks sits on her other side, not even looking at her, his bright blue eyes fixed on the waves. She watches him for a moment, until he finally looks back at her, his expression casual.

"Wasn't expecting you here," he says.

"Neither was I," she replies honestly, looking back out at the ocean. "Should have known I'd see you here."

"You really should have," he says teasingly. Once again, he's spoken an enormous truth without knowing it.

Throughout this entire case, Deeks has had her back. He was watching her while Granger interrogated her in the boat shed, he made sure she was okay before leaving her to be interrogated in the first place. He was there for her when she didn't want him to be there, with coffee in hand and a stupid note that meant to world to her in that brief moment. He listened to her, he did what she needed him to without question. He did what was best for them, not him.

He's given her space today.

"It's been a long day without you," he says. "Kinda boring, actually. Sam doesn't seem to like my jokes as much as you do-"

"The sun will go down soon," she says quietly, "You should go surf."

"You good?" he asks. She grants him a small smile.

"Go and surf, Deeks." He doesn't reply, he just nods and stands up circling around her to pick up his board. He tousles her hair before striding down the beach to the water. She manages to keep her eyes from drifting downwards from his back by musing on the several times she's seen him do this.

He's a surfer. On the inside, on the outside. When he talks (idiosyncrasies, those adorable idiosyncrasies that she, like Hetty, can't help but be fond of), and when he stares silently and wistfully at the ocean when they're on the way to apprehend a suspect or asset.

He's riding the waves now, his entire being radiating his total focus as he gracefully navigates the water. She's watched him enough to know why he's better than most of the posers on the waves. He moves with the water, becomes one with it, instead of plowing through it.

Sort of like their partnership. Their friendship. Their rela-their um, their thing.

She has got to stop with the constant wave-life comparisons.

Several long minutes pass.

After a few larger waves run their course, she watches him paddle around, lying on his stomach, his eyes outwards, watching for more waves.

She takes a deep breath, setting her father's journal down beside her. It's odd, when she thinks of the questions that have driven her life since she was fifteen, she now has answers to pair with them. But one question remains.

Where do I go from here?

She bites her bottom lip and furrows her brows, staring out at the horizon. Not frowning because of the piercing pain in her rib, but because of the turmoil inside. For years, all she has ever wanted is to find answers to her father's death. It was the very reason she joined NCIS in the first place. So now what?

Does she even have a reason to stay at NCIS anymore?

She doesn't get a chance to answer herself because while she was musing, Deeks has managed to trudge up the beach, surfboard in hand. The sun is almost below the horizon now. He crouches down in front of her, hair messy and dripping wet, face flushed from his workout.

"You haven't gone home yet," he says, still breathing harder than usual.

"Good deducing, Sherlock," she throws back, her voice teasing. Force of habit.

"Why?"

She's caught off guard by the seemingly simple question, but when is Deeks ever simple? She could have gone home anytime while he surfed, it's not like they made plans or anything. Hell, she didn't even plan on seeing him here. But still, she remained. She watched him, thought of him, and watched him some more.

But why did she stay?

"Lost in thought, I guess," she finally replies. It's an honest answer, but still not the one he deserves to hear. But for now, it's all he's going to get.

"Understandable," he says, still crouched in front of her. His eyes bore into hers, probing. Typical Deeks, wanting to make sure she's okay. "How's the rib?"

"Looks even worse, but fine," Kensi replies. She sees his eyes flash at her use of the word 'fine'. He knows what fine really means, and she knows he knows. It's her way of giving him the truth, which he deserves after all he's done for her these past few days.

"Want me to drive you back?" Deeks offers, "I mean, I know your car-"

"I'm fine, Deeks, really," Kensi interrupts softly, giving him a small smile.

"Really?"

"Yes." He doesn't believe her. She wouldn't either.

"Can I at least escort you back?" Kensi arches an eyebrow.

"Escort?"

"Please, Kens?" He scratches his head, almost sheepish. "I'm just- I want to know you're okay." She studies him for a long moment, not knowing whether to be touched or exasperated. He stares back evenly, eyes unyielding.

"Okay," she says finally.

"Okay?"

"Yeah." She stands up, holding her hands out to help her no doubt tired partner up. He takes her hand and stands with her assistance before bending down to pick up his surfboard. She bends down to grab her father's journal and runs her fingers over the leather cover, closing her eyes for a second.

She doesn't say anything else out of fear of breaking the easy-going air between them. She simply walks over to her car and hops in. She puts her keys in the ignition but waits until she sees Deeks get into his own car that she turns them.

He makes faces at her at red lights. She sees them whenever she looks in her rearview mirror.

She manages to keep her thoughts trivial on the drive back to her place, still aware of the grinding pain in her side. Oh yeah, she's going to need some ice. Scratch that, a lot of ice.

She doesn't know why he would want to escort her home, she's probably not left him much time to relax now. His day has probably been almost as hellish as hers. She remembers how she felt briefly when she thought he was being accused of murder. If what he felt was remotely close to what she did . . . does, than she can understand his craving for closeness.

She pulls into her driveway and he pulls in after her, still making crazy faces at her. She's snickering- it's not like he can hear her after all.

She pulls her keys out of ignition and stuffs them in her pockets. She then reaches for her father's journal and tucks it under her right arm before opening the car door and swinging her legs out. She walks to her door in silence, feeling her partner's presence behind her.

Kensi turns when she reaches her door and pulls her keys out of her pocket, fumbling with them for a moment.

She might as well admit it- she's stalling.

She's tired of being alone.

"You got your change of clothes?" she asks.

"Yeah, in my bag," he replies. "Why?"

"Would you, uh," Kensi clears her throat and bites her bottom lip. "Would you like to stay for dinner?"

Did she really just do that? Ask him to stay for dinner?

Honestly, he's the only thing keeping her slightly sane right now. She's on the verge of another emotional breakdown, and he's the only thing keeping her head above water. She wants him there, with her, for as long as possible.

Stalling it is.

"Since when do you cook?" he quips, although she can detect a hint of happiness in his teasing voice.

"I can cook!" she says defensively. Too quickly too, because he just grins at her. His hair has almost dried by now- he drove with his windows open. She glances over at his car. His towel is put over his driver's seat to keep it from being completely soaked through.

"Kens, your idea of cooking is pouring some chocolate syrup on a Twinkie and putting it on a pretty plate," Deeks snorts, eyes sparkling.

"So that's a no, then?" Kensi asks, feeling her stomach deflate slightly. His teasing eyes soften.

"I'll cook," he offers, "But even if you want to cook, I'll stay." He's sobered up slightly, his tone is serious now and he looks her directly in the eye. She can't quite bring herself to smile, but her cheeks redden slightly.

"Okay," she breathes, unlocking her door and opening it up for him. He motions for her to go ahead and jogs back to his car, grabbing his bag. She waits for him and allows him to enter before her, closing the door as she enters her home.

While he changes in the bathroom, she speed-cleans her living room, tossing aside anything she might have left laying around. It's not that she's messy, her things all have a place. It's just, kind of like the pieces of her life, their places are scattered.

She places her father's journal next to a picture of him on her mantle.

Her rib is still unacceptably uncomfortable, so she makes her way over to her kitchen and digs through a cabinet until she finds some Tylenol. She grabs a glass and fills it with some tap water. She notices Deeks behind her as she finishes popping the pills, dried and dressed in a t-shirt and jeans.

"That enough for the pain?" he asks.

"No," she deadpans. "But I'll live."

He gives her that stupid knowing smile of his- the one that tells her he knows how much pain she is, he knows that she's putting on a brave face. She can't even bring herself to mind because the only other man who has given her that look is her father.

It's then that she forces herself to look away and turn around to put away her now empty glass of water. Deeks approaches her from behind, and her eyes flutter closed when she feels his breath against her neck.

"You sure you're okay?" he murmurs.

"Just cook for me, Deeks," she says softly, ducking away from him and heading to her living room, where she sleepily reclines on her couch to await her dinner.

She can hear him shuffling around her kitchen, hear the clinking of the pots and pans. He knows her kitchen well, which shouldn't surprise her considering the amount of time he has spent there after work. He always insists on cooking for her, as if he's required to do it for her. Used to annoy her, now it just amuses her. Pretty much like everything about him.

The phone rings moments later, and Kensi stretches before standing up to answer it. "Kensi," she says in greeting, peeking into the kitchen as the smell of olives wafts over to her.

"Hello, Kensi, it's Julia."

Oh. Kensi's stomach flips. She's still reeling from the fact that she has a mother again. It's odd, she's grown so used to the feeling of not having parents that she never realized how much she's craved having one. She glances back over at Deeks, wondering how he feels about it. He shot his father and as for his mother, well, she's not really sure where she is when it comes to him. He's humming, she doesn't recognize the tune but it sounds like it's from the ninety's. She smiles slightly.

"Hi, Mom," she says finally, the word sounding strange coming from her mouth.

"You busy?" Julia asks, her voice still slightly cautious, as if she's afraid something she says will drive Kensi away again.

"Not really," Kensi replies, feeling the same. "Deeks is here."

"Oh, am I interrupting . . . ?"

"No!" Kensi answers far too quickly and loudly, a blush rising to her cheeks. Deeks peeks into the living room over to her, eyebrows raised. "He-he's just making dinner."

"That's sweet!" Julia says kindly, "I won't keep you-"

"No, Mom, it's fine," Kensi interjects, "He's cooking, so I can talk."

"You talking about me?" Deeks whispers at her from his perch at the kitchen doorway, holding a spatula. She rolls her eyes and turns away from him, walking over and sitting down on her couch as he goes back to whatever delicious thing he's cooking.

"How is Detective Deeks?" Julia asks.

"He's good," Kensi replies, "He just finished surfing before we came to my place." She can't help the note of pride in her voice. Yeah, she gets a kick out of his surfing skills. So what?

"Oh, he surfs?" Julia asks, intrigued.

"Yeah," Kensi says, biting her bottom lip to hide her smile.

Julia's quiet for a moment. "He cares about you a lot, you know." Kensi's taken by surprise with her mother's sincere comment.

"I know," she says finally. "What . . . what did he say to you? When he took you into custody?" Julia chuckles.

"He told me I had every reason to be proud of you," she answers, "He said that you were an incredible woman." Kensi's heart skips a beat and she finds herself looking back at the kitchen, where Deeks is, busily mixing something in a bowl. It smells, in a word, divine.

He thinks she's an incredible woman?

This entire case, she has practically left him in the dark, going rogue, telling him what to do . . . she's basically been the opposite of an acceptable partner.

And yet he called her incredible.

"Oh," is all she manages to say, her voice slightly raspy.

"So, about Detective Deeks . . . are you two . . . ?"

"No!" Kensi says, too loudly again because Deeks peeks over at her again, curious. She waves him off and he returns to his cooking, wearing a very annoying smirk. "No, Mom, we're, uh, we're just partners. Friends."

"Are you sure? The way he talked about you . . . I thought-"

"He's like that," Kensi interjects, not wanting to hear more for the sake of her sanity.

"The way you blushed when I first mentioned him at home, Kensi. I haven't seen you make that face since you were twelve and had a crush on oh, what's his name-"

"Dylan Somers," Kensi finishes, chuckling. "And Mom, really, we're just friends."

"Okay, you're friends," Julia relents. "But do you want there to be more?" Kensi's eyes widen, and she very nearly drops the phone.

"M-more?" she whispers. "Mom, we can't-"

"Even if you can't, baby, do you want more?" Kensi's forgotten how insistent her mother can be.

"It's . . . it's complicated, Mom."

"He's a good man, honey."

"He is," Kensi agrees softly, "As good as they come."

Julia pauses for a long moment. "Do me a favor?"

"Anything." Anything to make up for those lost years, Mom.

"Come have dinner with me on Saturday?" Her voice is so hopeful, and so very refreshing that Kensi finds herself smiling.

"I'd like that," she answers.

"Oh, and Kensi?"

"Yeah?"

"Invite your, ah, partner too. He's easy on the eyes." With that, Julia hangs up, leaving Kensi standing there with her mouth open in shock.

Her mom wants to have dinner with Deeks? Oh God, that will not do Kensi's tumultuous heart any good.

Julia is the second person to ask Kensi if her . . . thing with Deeks goes beyond the normal levels of a partnership. And in many ways, it does. They're best friends. She's comfortable telling him just about anything. She trusts him completely after one year, which is quite a feat for him, considering her issues with trust. She can talk to him about a case or a game. Anything and everything.

But does she want more?

Does she want to have the freedom of being able to lean in and kiss him whenever she wants, cuddle up to him without an excuse, or just stare into his ocean blue eyes without reason?

She doesn't know if she's ready for that yet. Anything she pursues with Deeks will last for a while, of that she is certain. She needs to find out who she is as a person first. A person with less baggage. A person who can finally breathe again and know. Just . . . know.

She stares at her reflection in her television screen for several minutes.

"Kens?"

She turns to see Deeks, leaning against the doorframe and looking very pleased with himself. She can tell why. Whatever he is cooking smells heavenly.

"Yeah?"

"You good?"

"Mmhmm." He studies her for a moment.

"Okay," he says finally, giving her a quick smile before retreating back to her kitchen.

The Tylenol hasn't done much to ease the ache in her side. She'll probably end up having to see a doctor at some point, but until then she refuses to. She stands up and walks over to the mantle and just stands there, looking at her father's journal. She turns and walks over to the kitchen.

"Deeks?"

"Yup?"

"I'll be in the bathroom. Don't go looking for me."

"Kay."

She walks over to her bathroom and shuts the door, allowing herself to grimace and lean against the wall. She looks at her reflection in the mirror. Suddenly, she's hit by a wave of emotion, longing.

For a second time that evening, she feels fifteen again.

She wants her daddy.

She wonders if it would have been better if he had died while she was really young, if she wasn't allowed to get so close to him. She got enough time with him to grow attached, to have him be proud of her. He would be overly protective about any boys that showed interest, she would get a secret kick out of it. He would tease her, she would tease him. She was a daddy's girl through and through, and without him . . . she was just a girl.

She sinks to the ground, shutting her eyes tightly.

So many things unsaid. So many things he'll never see. He'll never see her badge, never see her get married (if she ever does). He never saw her graduate high school or college, missed her maturing. He missed so much. He'll never meet his grandchildren, if she ever has any.

The tears don't come. She won't let them.

She's stronger now. She's not fifteen anymore. She's Special Agent Kensi Blye, NCIS. Badass Blye.

Wonder Woman.

She stands up and opens the bathroom door, composing herself. She's surprised to see Deeks standing there, as if he was about to knock.

"I'm sorry, I was just-" he says as she stammers, "What are you-"

They both cut off, feeling very awkward. She continues.

"I told you I was going to the bathroom."

"I heard no flush."

Damn. He's got her there.

"I, uh-" He arches an eyebrow, looking her in the eye.

"And you were in there for a long time."

"You interrogating me?" she hisses, "Jeez, Deeks."

"Don't need to. You're a bad liar, Kens." He takes a step closer to her. "You sure you're okay?"

"I'm fine, Deeks!" Kensi huffs, and instantly wants to take back the words. "And by fine, I do mean fine!"

He doesn't push for once, but she knows he knows that something's up. Was up. Might still be up. Whatever.

"Dinner's ready," he says finally, cautiously. Kensi's mood brightens considerably at the thought of food.

"What did you make?" she asks, following him over to her kitchen table. She takes a seat across from where he's chosen to sit. He's set the table and everything, he even found some wine she had stored in her pantry.

"Baked chicken, some salad, and fried potato cubes," he answers, putting two large bowls with the side dishes in front of her and then a platter with two chicken breasts, seasoned with-

"What did you use to season it?" she asks, "I don't have that much-"

"You had some old Italian seasoning and Parmesan cheese in the back of your fridge," he replies, "It was practically begging to be used in a masterpiece."

Kensi bites her bottom lip and smiles, not meeting his eyes.

They eat in silence for a while, the weight of the past few days hitting them both in the moments. She for one is completely drained, physically and emotionally. She can feel his eyes on her as she eats, concerned and watchful as always. She can't bring herself to be annoyed at him for it, it feels nice to have him there. She's tired of being alone.

Just because she can be doesn't mean she has to be.

"I'm your partner. What makes you think I'm gonna let you do this by yourself?"

She finally meets his eyes. He subtly frowns at her in concern, and she shakes her head, not wanting to delve into that now.

"The chicken's amazing," she murmurs, averting her eyes.

"Thanks." He hesitates, and then asks, "How's the rib?"

"Fine." She understands what the use of the word means, and frankly, she really doesn't care.

"Wonder Woman," he quips fondly, rolling his eyes. "You know that makes me think, if I were a superhero, who would I be?" Kensi can't help it, she snorts at him.

"You can be really random sometimes, you know that?"

"I think I'd be Aquaman," he says, grinning. "Tanned, muscled-"

"Oh really? And what are you going to do about that?" Kensi quips, grinning. "And I read an article about how it would be to be him, and let me tell you, it's not worth it."

"You love my body," Deeks says with a smirk. "And don't hate on Aquaman- he's awesome."

"Let's see here, osmotic pressure, the freezing cold temperatures of the deep-"

"His suit. Don't tell me you don't find his suit hot."

"Do you?" she snorts.

"I think you would, if it were on me."

"Sure," Kensi says, rolling her eyes. He's done it again, he's puller her back from her solitary brooding and made her smile and laugh. "And if I was blindfolded."

Deeks just grins at her, his eyes still watchful for any sign of pain in her eyes. Yeah, laughing might hurt, but it's so worth it right now.

"Thank you," she says suddenly, "Not just for dinner-"

"Though it rocked your world," Deeks interrupts, grinning. Kensi smiles.

"In all seriousness, Deeks. I don't know if I could have . . . made it through all of this without you." She takes a deep breath, and then reaches over and takes his hand. "Thank you."

"S'what partners are for," he replies quietly, eyes drifting to their connected hands and then giving hers a quick squeeze. "I'd do it all over again."

She doesn't deserve him.

You're not just a partner.


She insists on doing the dishes, wanting him to relax. He tries to use her rib as an excuse to make her rest, but she can be just as stubborn as him. He goes to the living room, his eyes suddenly glittering with an idea that she has a feeling she doesn't want to know about.

She thinks of doing this for Dom over two years ago. He had been her partner, her friend, almost like a little brother. She had failed him.

He's a part of her now.

She thinks of Jack. The love of her life, her better half. The man she had been so certain she would spend the rest of her life with. She had failed him too.

He's a part of her as well.

She thinks of Sam and Callen, her team, her brothers. The men who are there for her through thick and then, the men who stayed on her side the entire time. Her friends in every way, the men who constantly compete with her and support her. And then . . .

There's Deeks. She might as well admit it, she's attracted to him. If she's being totally honest with herself, she's been attracted to him ever since meeting him in that gym. But the hard thing is admitting that her attraction goes beyond the physical aspects and the sexually charged banter. The hard thing is admitting that what she feels goes far beyond that.

What she feels about Deeks is hard to describe. Like she told her mom, it's complicated. Her feelings for him can change by the second, all depending on what comes out of his mouth. He has the uncanny ability (and nerve) to call her out on her shit (really no other way to describe it) and still make her smile within the minute. He has this ridiculous protective streak that will get him killed someday. He jokes about everything, even when he shouldn't be joking. He learns fast, and has gained her complete trust so quickly that it scares her.

He's like a damn golden retriever, following her around and making adorable faces at her to appease her when he says stupid things. And she's fallen for it, dammit. She shouldn't fall for it, shouldn't have to defend the fact that she is too his type, shouldn't even CARE whether she's his type or not.

But she does.

She decides to leave the dishes for later. The silence is giving her far too much time to think, and thinking is not something she can let herself do right now. Not in this state.

She half-expects to find that Deeks had already left. After all, she had only asked him to dinner, not to spend the night.

She can't help but smile upon seeing what Deeks has done as she walks into her living room. He's put away some more of her junk and somehow found one of her old scented candles and lit it. Two Twinkies are neatly sitting near the candle. Deeks is sitting on her couch, looking quite pleased with himself.

"This your idea of seduction?" Kensi asks, sitting next to him and poking him gently in the arm. "Not very elaborate, if you ask me."

"It's working, though," Deeks throws back with an easy grin. Kensi rolls her eyes and grabs a Twinkie.

"Keep telling yourself that," Kensi says, snickering.

"Alright," he responds, grabbing his own Twinkie. He doesn't turn the television on like he normally does, and Kensi's grateful. It's just them. Here and now, nothing else matters. "Permission to ask a serious question?"

She frowns. "Granted . . ."

"You won't hit me?"

"Depends," she answers vaguely, "What's the question?"

Deeks takes a steadying breath before saying, "You're not leaving NCIS, are you?"

Kensi is beyond shocked at his blunt and daring question, the utter seriousness radiating from his eyes. For a moment she stares at him in surprise, her mouth parted. "Why-why are you asking me that?"

"You joined NCIS to find answers, right?" She nods numbly. "Well, you have. So what's to keep you from resigning?"

"You trying to convince me to?" she snaps.

"You know that's not what I meant," Deeks snaps right back.

She shouldn't get frustrated wit him, he's perfectly justified, as her partner, to ask that question. But the thing is, he's not asking as a partner. He's asking with the tone of someone who feels something more. And if that's the case . . . he has no right to be asking her that. He should know better, and she should not be having so many damn butterflies fluttering around her stomach.

"Well if I leave, will you stay?" she snorts, meaning for the question to be rhetorical.

"No," Deeks says simply, eliciting a surprised inhale from Kensi. "I wouldn't have much of a reason to, would I? You're my partner, I stick with you. That's how it works." Kensi's far too uprooted to say anything. "So will you stay?"

"You'd really leave if I quit?" Kensi asks, mystified.

"No deflection, Kens," Deeks says. "Answer the question, please." His voice is gentle again, and she knows that saying she was leaving would hurt her if it hurt him.

"I have no intention of leaving," she says softly, "My father's case may be the reason I joined NCIS, but it's not the reason I've stayed."

"What is, then?" he asks.

You.

Yeah, it's the first thing to come to her mind, and she mentally kicks herself for such a romantic answer. And she's kicking herself really hard right now because while it's not the complete truth, it's not a total lie either. She might as well admit it, he's a major reason she comes into work with at least a small smile on her face every day. Their team, their partnership . . . it all just works. It's fun and it's efficient and she feels somewhat fulfilled going home at night.

"I-don't . . . don't ask me, Deeks," she murmurs, wringing her hands together.

"I'm not backing down, Kens."

"Of course you aren't," she mutters. "You never do."

"I want to know, Kens," he insists, "Why do you stay?"

"I like my job!"

"And?"

She sighs. "Is that not enough for you?"

"Nope." She rolls her eyes and takes an angry bite of her Twinkie. "Do I . . . I make it better for you, right? I'm not a-a burden, am I?"

Her eyes widen. "Deeks, like you said earlier, you're my partner. You've saves my ass multiple times, and you make me smile afterwards." She takes a deep breath before saying, "You're one of the main reasons I stay."

He says nothing, and for once Kensi knows that she's finally rendered her insane partner speechless.

He gets up to leave moments later, and Kensi walks him to the door. His hand wanders to the hem of her shirt, and he looks up at her for permission. She nods, meeting his eyes, and he pulls up her shirt. His hand traces the bruise so gently that it barely stings. He looks up and meets her eyes again.

"I'm sorry I wasn't there," he whispers.

"You would have been shot," she replies. "It's not your fault." Her hand moves up and cups his cheek for a short second, and she notices how his eyes close briefly under her gentle touch. "Deeks, it's not your fault."

"I should have done more . . ."

"You did everything," she whispers, "I'm grateful for everything you did." She moves her hand down, resting it on his chest.

This . . . standing here with her partner, her amazing, wonderful partner . . . this is right.

Deeks makes her who she wants to be. He brings out her strength, in and outside of work. He never hides her own issues from her, he forces her to confront them and work through them. He brings out her wit, her smile. He challenges her in every way. He makes her be Badass Blye.

He's helped her become who she is.

"You're staring," he murmurs, a hint of teasing in his voice. A loophole she doesn't bother to take.

"Thank you," she whispers again. "Thank you for fighting for me. For us."

"Always," he replies in a voice just as soft as hers. "Partner."

"No partner," she says, "Just . . . just Kensi." His eyes widen in surprise.

"Okay . . . Kensi."

Kensi.

Not Wonder Woman, Badass Blye, Fern, Kiki, Ines . . . just Kensi. Kensi who finally solved her father's murder, reconnected with her mother, and took down a man while injured. Kensi who has her entire team's back, and whose partner, while misguided sometimes, will have her back to the bitter end.

And it's Kensi who leans forward and presses a feather-light kiss to her partner's cheek, lingering there longer than she needs to. It's Kensi who gently pushes a very dazed Deeks outside and then smiles at him.

He doesn't stay. She doesn't need him to. She'll see him at nine thirty in the morning tomorrow with a bright smile and bad joke that makes her laugh.

She can finally put her father's case to rest. She can move on, be happy. And tomorrow will be a new beginning. Tomorrow she'll be Agent Kensi Blye, NCIS.

Because despite everything, it's who she is.

And she wouldn't have it any other way.


Yeah, so this story has basically made me a hermit these past two days. I hope you enjoyed! *hugs and kisses for all*

-Gab