Coming to the end of Season 5 of my re-watch of NCIS: LA. Season 5 is THE BEST. The episode entitled "Three Hearts" completes the Deeks/Kensi love story arc (until the Christmas episode of Season 6).
In "Three Hearts," Kensi is back in the field, at last back with her partner Deeks, after being separated for five months. They are assigned to interrogate an agent who has probably been compromised in his latest assignment, a master manipulator, lost in his deep cover ops, telling story after story. He says at one point:
Everybody has got three hearts. The first heart, that's the one you show to strangers. The second heart, only your family gets to see that; your family and the person put on this earth to walk by your side, your soul mate. But that third heart is the thing. Never let anyone see it. There's too much truth inside; too much risk. She saw yours, didn't she. Ah damn, brother, this is not going to end well.
This case makes Deeks question what they should do about their "thing." Deeks is always the one to push their relationship but he’s also scared, very scared, to lose everything now that they just got it back, even more than before -- he knows the loss now. After the interrogation of the agent, who probed them a little too much....
....they had a conversation about consequences."....ever see the way she looks at you when you fidget with your hair? Ever see how he gets stronger just by hearing the sound of your voice?
K: Whatever happened between him and Olivia has nothing to do with us.
D: Right. He gets too close to her on the job, things turn personal when they should stay professional and he gets burned.
K: He gets burned.We didn't.
D: Not yet. You know what it is? I kept thinking that could be me some day on his side of the table one day.
K: Deeks, that's the game he was running, that's exactly how he wanted you to feel.
D: I get that. But it doesn't mean it's not true.
K: And I would never let that happen to you.
D: Right. Only problem being that you would be the reason it would happen in the first place.
At the end of the episode, Deeks makes the tough decision for the both of them -- putting their romantic relationship on hold. Lots of symbolism in the next few exchanges.
Deeks gives Kensi's knife back (long story - sometimes a knife isn't just a knife) but this was signalling stopping the romance.
Kensi’s face when he did it was heartbreaking - she was thinking it was a breakup ... until Deeks says (more symbolism) his line about racoons mating for life. He’s not giving up on them, but everything is a mess right now, and they need time. There is hope and she then decides to make a move to say that she too is still in it with him long term.
More symbolism: she uses the knife to cut open the box and walks out with a smile.
A little history on the box: it showed up in Season 4 as a late birthday present: she had "decided to get him something that he's always wanted - more than anything else in the world". Deeks never opened it in all that time because "I mean, life doesn't get any better than this moment right now because everything I've ever wanted is inside this box, right? There's no real reason to open it then, is there." And it sat unopened (through 27 more episodes, through his torture and PTSD, through their one night together, through her being sent to Afghanistan therefore being separated for five months and her being a prisoner of war and rescued -- they've had a tough year). Now he looks into the box Kensi just cut open.
Inside ... is another box. He grins. (symbolism! Second heart).
And the episode ends with Hetty and Granger observing them:
G: The beginning of the end?
H: The end of the beginning.
Ha! Love it.
This is why I can't get back to books yet.
PK the Bookeemonster