There’s one new message on Five-0’s phone when Jenna gets in. Thinking nothing of it, she plays it, her blood running cold the minute she hears the voice on the other end of the line. “You can’t keep out of this?” the Irish accent is strong and unmistakable. Jenna’s been working on Wo Fat and his known associates long enough to know Victor Hesse when she hears him. “Then I’m getting your team involved. I hope you said goodbye.”
The line goes dead after that, leaving Jenna scrambling to make phone calls to people she’s only just met, not knowing which of them are in danger (if not all of them).
She calls Danny first with the belief he’ll know how to handle this. “Danny? Danny, are you there, are you okay?” she rapidly asks. “Hesse called the office, he says he has one of the team, are you there, are you safe?”
“Jenna, I’m okay. Trust me, Hesse isn’t stupid enough to go for an immortal,” he promises. “Steve’s here. He’s okay. We’re on our way in. Call the others, we’ll be there as soon as Steve attempts to behead me in an insane car accident.”
“Danno,” Steve growls in the background angrily, but then Danny hangs up and Jenna is left with two more phone calls to make, her heart in her throat.
She’s an analyst, for god’s sake, she’s supposed to be behind a desk compiling data and looking for trends. She isn’t supposed to be getting in the middle of a supernatural grudge match. She should’ve stayed home, she should’ve left well enough alone, but she’d been so determined to find out if Josh’s spirit could possibly be out there...
It’s too late to focus on that.
She calls Kono and can’t help the immediate sense of dread that floods her when she picks up within two rings. Now, Jenna knows who’s in danger. She almost misses the confusion of being in the dark, because at least then she’d have hope. “Kono, I think Chin’s been taken,” she says, pulling up the board and looking for any trace of GPS. “His phone’s been turned off, maybe destroyed, I can’t...I can’t find him!” Jenna says through a thick lump of frustration in her throat, pulling up other archives and databases. “His GPS says he’s still at home.”
“He’s not, I was just there to pick him up,” Kono replies, sounding just as panicked as Jenna feels. “Jenna, pull up the file on the desktop that says ‘Stalking Is Illegal, McGarrett, You Army-Happy Idiot’.” Jenna stares at it in confusion. It’s an .exe program; she’s wondered at the name more than once, but she can’t see how it’s going to help. One double-click of the program later and suddenly Jenna is a little breathless and fearful, at once.
“Oh...” Jenna gets out. “Wow.”
There’s a map of Oahu on the board and four little red dots, blinking away happily. There’s a blue dot in the picture as well, safely ensconced at the elementary school. It doesn’t take very long for Jenna to realize what this is.
“Where are they?”
“Subcutaneous, in the hand,” Kono replies tersely. Jenna doesn’t blame her. They can discuss tech later when everyone is safe. She’s already isolating the points, eliminating Kono, then Danny and Steve, then the blue dot she assumes to be Grace. “We need to find Chin. I just got a message that Sang Min wasn’t in his cell when they did their early morning rounds. Tell me what you see,” she demands.
On the screen, Jenna looks at the last remaining point. Kono and Steve’s small red dots had been flashing. Danny’s point holds still.
So does Chin’s.
Jenna’s not sure she likes the implication.
“He’s near the docks, I think he’s on a boat,” Jenna says, typing as fast as she can to bring up the manifest. “It’s called the Osprey. I’m sending you the coordinates and I’ll get Danny and Steve to meet you here. You three can leave together.”
“I’m only taking Danny with me,” Kono insists. “Wo Fat is after Steve, and if they’ve gone as far as taking Chin...” Her voice, which has been holding up until now, shakes at her cousin’s name. “I’m not letting him get his hands on anyone else. We’re keeping Steve at the office at all costs.” She hangs up, leaving Jenna to wonder how the heck she’s supposed to restrain a werewolf.
They don’t exactly cover that in analyst training.
She doesn’t have long to figure it out, either. Within five minutes, the office doors are pushed open, slamming into the wall. Danny heads straight for the weapons chest while Steve keeps striding towards her in the center of the room. “Kono says you know the location. Give me the coordinates.”
Jenna swallows, hard. It’s time to stand her ground. “No,” she says, setting her shoulders back with determination.
“Excuse me?” Steve growls.
“I said...” And here, she takes a deep breath to bolster herself. “No. Kono says I can send Danny, but that you’re not allowed to go.” She’s in the middle of wondering what her next move is because Steve is starting to get that look on his face that makes her worried for her jugular.
Luckily, Kono arrives before any blood can be shed. She doesn’t waste any time as she enters the office and catches Danny’s eye. They both nod, like they’ve silently exchanged some kind of secret code.
Immediately, their focus turns to Steve as they approach him from opposing angles.
“Easy way or the hard way, babe,” Danny offers, adjusting the new belt he has on that allows for the use of two swords. “You’re not going out there. Wo Fat wants you. He’s using Chin as bait, you really think that walking right into the trap is the smart thing to do?”
“How is you going any smarter?” Steve growls. “He knows I’ve mated with you.”
“And the only way to kill me is to chop off my head. Kono will be there to watch out for me, but it’s something you have to be pretty close to do!” Danny shouts back at him. “Even a bomb isn’t guaranteed to take my head off. Steve, silver will kill you, and there are too many ways for Wo Fat to do that. You’re staying here, so pick the hard way or the easy way before I choose for you.”
“Danny, there’s no way that I’m staying here while you go out there...”
Jenna’s pretty sure Steve meant to go on, but while he’s been glaring at Danny and starting in on his impassioned speech, Kono has positioned herself behind him, raising up a silver bound book in her hands, clocking Steve with it. He crumples in a graceless heap, not looking so good from where Jenna’s standing.
“Is he going to be okay?” she asks warily as Danny and Kono start hauling Steve across the floor, coordinating how many sets of handcuffs they’ll need (Kono insists one ankle and one wrist, but Danny wants to be safe and cuff every limb in case he tries to shift). “He went down pretty hard.”
“What, with that head?” Danny scoffs. His light tone is doing nothing to erase the worry from his expression and Jenna’s just glad that she’s not the only one who’s not totally on board with the whole ‘violence in the workplace as a preventative measure’ thing. “It’s going to take more than one little book...huh, Police Procedure Circa the Early 1900’s,” he reads the side of the book with a sickly bemused smirk before he refocuses. “You know what I mean. Stubborn, thick head. Relatively little book. He’ll be fine when he wakes up. He’ll be incredibly pissed off and I wouldn’t want to be the first person he sees, but fine.”
Kono’s goes back to gearing up. Jenna had been impressed with the Five-O locker when she’d first arrived – it’s well-stocked with a variety of weapons, from silver-tipped stakes to guns with wooden bullets. Kono’s taking enough to start a war.
“Jenna, are you in or out?” she says, tossing several small sheathed knives in Danny’s direction.
He catches them easily, tucking them into his belt. The whole time, his focus is on Jenna. They’re waiting for her, she realizes. They’re waiting for her to decide whether she wants to take revenge into her own hands. It doesn’t take her very long to remember why she’s out here in the first place. The data on spirits is still being run through every database she has, and she’s been sitting on her hands while Wo Fat threatens the lives of the people who have been nothing but kind to her.
Now, they’re offering her a chance to get into the game.
“I don’t want to slow you down,” she says, aware that she might be stammering slightly. She’s never been this nervous before, apart from leading the strike on Wo Fat, and even then, she had been cocksure and over-confident. She hurries after Kono and Danny when she realizes what the alternative is.
She can go with them and help take down a monster -- or she can stay put and wait for a different kind of monster to wake up and realize he’s been betrayed.
She somehow thinks it might be safer to stick with the devil she knows. “I’ll come,” she says.
“Good,” Kono says, her gaze and her tone equally steely. “I’ll drive.”
Danny takes the front seat and Jenna grips the handle in the back as tight as she can. She might have whiplash from the corners, but Kono gets them to the harbor in record time. Jenna’s been following this team for weeks, but she’s still taken by surprise when she remembers how efficient they are – and how deadly they can be. She lags five steps behind Kono – who has Chin’s shotgun at the ready – and eight behind Danny, who’s wielding two swords expertly.
They’re on a determined path towards the Osprey when Danny stops in his tracks.
“Danny?” Kono demands, worriedly. “Danny, what is it?”
“Get back, both of you,” Danny says, sweeping his arm out in front of them and stepping forward towards the boat. The light is low, but when Jenna squints, she can make out the faint hint of a shadow. “I heard you busted out. Was that thanks to Hesse?”
The man steps into direct sunlight and Jenna recognizes him immediately – Sang Min.
“You’re always thinking small, haole. Hesse was busy with your boy, I got out on my own,” Sang Min says.
“I don’t buy it.”
“You don’t have to. It’s time,” Sang Min says, never once taking his eyes off of Danny.
Jenna can feel Kono’s fingers tugging at her shirt. Eventually, she manages to pry her eyes away from the two men circling each other. “Chin is still inside,” Kono says, staring at the point on her tablet. “Come on, we have to help him.”
“What about Danny?”
“We can’t interfere,” Kono says, throwing a helpless look over to Danny. “Not now.” Jenna affords one last look at the sound of swords clashing together and she immediately thinks with regret that they never should have tied Steve up like they did. What if Danny dies today, what if he dies and Steve doesn’t get to say goodbye?
She’ll never forgive herself, especially not if she lets that happen to anyone else the way it happened to her.
“Jenna!” Kono snaps, hauling her inside the houseboat. “We can’t interfere. It’s against the rules. Danny’s on his own.”
“He’s over four hundred years old and he’s pissed,” Kono says, her voice low as she digs out her gun and begins to clear rooms. “He’ll be fine. If he’s not, Steve is gonna kill me,” she admits, despair in her tone (gone as quickly as it’s come). “But he’ll be fine. He will be.” Though they’re entering the shadows, Jenna can see the look of doubt on Kono’s face. “He should be,” she says, like she’s just not completely sure. “He will be.”
“I hope you’re right.”
Jenna’s heart leaps with hope. Outside, she can hear Danny cursing away and the sound of blades meeting, but the very fact that Chin is inside and speaking to them (she hopes, because if this is a shifter, she’s going to be pissed at Wo Fat and then herself, in that exact order). Jenna hurries down the hall, but she’s beat by Kono’s desperate push forward.
It takes some navigating, but they find Chin on his knees and bound with silver around his wrists and neck. Jenna staggers to a stop when she sees him – eyes a chilling amber, teeth sharp and glinting in the dull light and clearly pointed. “Oh my god,” she exhales, panic striking her. “Oh my god.”
Kono doesn’t say anything. She hurries to her knees beside Chin, searching his face. “Cuz, what happened?”
“Hesse,” is all Chin says. He doesn’t have to say anything more. He tips his neck to one side and though the light is dim, it’s clear enough to show two fresh puncture wounds and the pale, waxy tint to his skin. Jenna’s studied the subject as much as she’d been able to and she knows the look of the newly-turned when she sees it.
She thinks she might throw up.
Outside, she can hear Danny cursing vividly and loudly. It means the fight might not be going in his favor, but at least it means that he’s still alive. She hovers out of Chin’s reach. As much as she hates herself for it, she’s still in possession of a healthy amount of fear when it comes to vampires – especially those who are new and yet to learn how to control their cravings.
Kono isn’t shying back at all. She’s fearless, and Jenna wishes that she had half of that determined strength. Or maybe what she’s missing is family connection and the deep love that breaks even the most paralyzing of fears.
“Come on, we need to get you out of here. We need to feed you,” she says, visibly steeling herself. Jenna doesn’t need to be able to read minds to know what comes next. Next, Kono will probably offer herself.
Chin shakes his head. “Alamea, I can’t do that. Not to you. You think Auntie would ever forgive me?”
Kono grits her teeth in a visible attempt to stop herself from crying. She looks away, but Jenna can’t. She’s drawn to watching, like a car crash, and her heart is racing. It’s distracting to her, but more so to Chin, whose attention snaps in her direction. “I’m sorry,” Jenna gets out. “I’m sorry, I’ll...” she trails off, inhaling deep breaths to try and steady her pulse to keep it from being too tempting.
Kono wraps her arm around Chin, hauling him to his feet. “I don’t care what they say,” she says, slinging her other arm around Chin’s waist and holding on desperately tight. “I should never have let this happen to you. I need to do something.”
Jenna’s been so focused on Chin that she realizes she’s stopped listening to the sounds of the fight outside. When she pays attention, she hears nothing but silence. There’s no sound of blades, no constant company of Danny’s colourful swears.
She can only assume the worst.
She feels sick, half on her way to a panic attack as she thinks about how she’s supposed to tell Steve about all of this. Chin’s been turned and Danny killed, all because of trouble that Jenna’s brought to their door. She knows it’s not like that, she knows Wo Fat would’ve struck anyway, but taking the blame seems natural.
Kono’s so busy tending to Chin that she’s not paying attention to anything else.
“Oh god,” Jenna gets out, feeling sicker than before. “What are we going to tell Steve, do you think he knows? Do you think he felt it?”
“Felt what?” Kono replies distantly.
“What about me?”
Jenna almost lets out a sound of joyous relief when she hears Danny’s voice in the doorway. She turns to look at him, forgetting that she barely knows him and charges forward to embrace him tightly, so grateful that the worst case scenario has been averted. “You’re okay,” she says, fingers wrapped up in heavy fistfuls of his shirt.
“Hey, yeah, I’m good,” Danny says, soothing her and hugging her back just as tightly. “Sang Min thought he had me, but overconfidence is the easiest way to get killed in this game.” He’s smiling, but there’s no happiness in it. He turns his attention towards Chin, grief rife on his face.
“Guess you and Steve aren’t gonna be the only ones to make it to next century,” Chin jokes weakly. He’s still half-slumped over and he’s not going to gain back any strength until he’s fed. Jenna keeps her mouth shut and Kono takes the silence as an opportunity to try again.
“Chin, take a pint, it’ll be just like I’m donating...”
“No, cuz. And that’s final,” Chin says. “I’ll use the blood service that every other vamp uses.”
“No offense, Chin,” Danny says, in the process of unbuttoning his cuff and rolling up his sleeve. “You look like shit and the services take a while to match up a vampire to the blood that best serves their nutritional needs. You need blood, now,” he says, coaxing him towards him with a crook of his fingers. “Come on,” he says, extending his bared arm to Chin, veins tipped in a way to make them look appetizing.
“Danny,” Kono says angrily. “He’s my family. It should be me...”
“Kono, I’ll heal by dinner. You’ll need days and iron pills to recover. There’s no argument here. I know he’s your family, but he’s mine, too.” Danny’s begun to sound impatient, like he’s aware that the longer they wait, the more torture Chin will experience as he suffers through the hunger and the weakness.
Jenna stands back, letting Danny and Kono have their staring contest. She doesn’t know who folds or what changes things, but eventually Kono gives in. “Fine,” she says quietly. “Do it.”
“Wait!” Jenna says suddenly, when Chin has his fangs extended and is about to puncture Danny’s skin.
Everyone’s looking at her, and she doesn’t want to do this, but if Chin drinks too much and falls to sleep to recover, she won’t get the chance to ask.
“I’m sorry,” she says, making sure her words are emphatic and genuine. “I have to ask. Chin, was Wo Fat here? Was it just Hesse?”
A dark look comes over Chin’s face. “No. He was here,” he says, one hand gripping Danny’s wrist tightly. It looks painful and like it might bruise, but Danny doesn’t make a sound. He endures it like it’s the least he can do. “Hesse strapped a bomb on me to make sure I wasn’t going to move. Wo Fat gave him instructions – turn me, hope that I was pissed at McGarrett enough to feed, remove the bomb, and then head back to the safe house. I think the plan is to take another run at Steve soon.”
“He’s probably already come back around,” Danny says when Kono looks at him worriedly. “Wo Fat’s gonna see this one through.” He turns to Chin, his arm still extended out in offering. “Are you feeling like taking a run at Steve? Because, god knows, I feel like it all the time, but usually I leave my most murderous intentions at home.”
“I’d never,” Chin says, baring his fangs in anger. “I don’t care what Hesse or Wo Fat think they know about me. They might think I’m a traitor, the kind of cop who takes dirty money for himself, but I didn’t take it. That’s not me, and I’d never hurt Steve.”
“Good,” Danny says, trying to keep the mood light. “Because I’ve got dibs.” He flashes a tense smile in Chin’s direction, foisting his arm out a little further. “Come on, let’s do this. Take two, three pints. Kono, I hope you still have those protein bars in your trunk, because I’m gonna need them.”
“And we should get back to the office as soon as possible so we can uncuff Steve,” Jenna says, drawn to watching the way Chin’s fangs puncture Danny’s skin and the blissful look that comes over him as he starts to drink.
She should look away, but she can’t. She watches everything, from the way Chin swallows the blood reverently to the way he hitches Danny closer, and though she feels mortified, she still doesn’t look away when Chin’s jeans tent outwards, in heady pleasure from the feed. At the rate of consumption, Chin should take three pints in the course of four minutes and when that time elapses, she clears her throat as politely as she can.
“Guys?” she reminds them. Kono’s just returned, holding out two power bars for Danny to take. Chin is licking the last remnants of Danny’s blood from off his fangs, but he already looks better – healthier. Danny’s pale, but he’d been pale to begin with. He devours the food, claps Kono on the back in thanks, and is already determinedly heading for the door.
“Jenna’s right, the big lug’s probably murderous, by now,” he admits. “Chin, take Kono’s car, stay in the back. Sunlight shouldn’t harm you too much, but you’re not gonna love it right now. Not while you’re adjusting. I’ll meet you at the office,” Danny says.
Jenna follows alongside Danny, hurrying up to him as she does. “Can I ride back with you? I don’t want to...” She doesn’t know what, but she has a feeling she means to say ‘intrude’. What’s happened is monstrous, and whatever private, family moment that Kono and Chin want to have together shouldn’t come equipped with an outsider.
Danny nods his response and she gives him a relieved ‘thank you’ before climbing in the passenger seat.
The ride back is tense. She’s not surprised, given the events of the morning and the lack of knowledge as to what they’re walking into. Danny, especially, seems well-aware of the fact that Steve is already bound to be pissed. If you add to that what they found at the harbour, it’s going to border on near-impossible to stop him from seeking revenge.
“I’m sorry we didn’t get him,” Danny finally says, as they take the final turns. “Wo Fat. I know you wanted to see him go down.”
Jenna shakes her head, feeling like an apology for what’s happened isn’t enough. Instead, she remains silent, quietly grateful for his sympathy at the same time as she’s angry that men like Wo Fat even exist in this world. Danny parks as close as he can to the door, taking a deep breath. He looks worried. He looks really concerned.
“Are you okay?” Jenna finally asks when she can’t take it anymore.
Danny musters a smile, shrugging as he does. “Steve’s going to smell vampire on me when I walk through those doors,” he says, cuffing his sleeve shut so that the marks are hidden. “I can tell you from experience that he doesn’t react well to that scent in my general vicinity.”
“But it’s Chin,” Jenna says, like that makes a difference.
“Yeah. I hope he’s aware enough to remember that.”
Danny takes a bolstering deep breath for courage as he pushes his way into the building, heading straight for Five-0’s offices. Jenna can see Steve free of his binds and waiting in the middle of the conference room. They’re ten feet away when she watches Steve catch a new scent in the air, tipping his nose upwards and drawing in a deep breath. He crosses his arms tensely over his chest, sights set on Danny.
He doesn’t move. He stands there, as if waiting for something that Jenna can’t even begin to guess at.
“Hey,” Danny greets Steve as they enter the office. “Babe, sorry. I’m sorry that we knocked you out and chained you up, but there was no way you could have gone with us...” He trails off when he realizes that Steve isn’t paying attention to him. His attention is singularly on Chin and Kono as they approach.
Jenna realizes, then, that she’s never seen Steve when he’s really angry until this exact moment.
“Shit,” Danny mutters, ditching his swords and grabbing at Steve’s wrists to try and hold him back.
Jenna’s confused. “What? What is it? What’s happening?”
Chin and Kono enter the room and within seconds, chaos dominates the room. Danny shouts a warning to ‘get Chin out of here, now,’ Steve is growling, lunging forward, pinning Chin to the nearest wall with a hand wrapped around his throat, holding him securely and strangling him all at once. Kono has a gun aimed at Steve and Danny’s trying to pry Steve back by the shoulders.
“Guys!” Jenna tries to shout over the din, but her voice falls on deaf ears.
“He’s mine,” Steve growls gutturally, shoving another wave of weight against Chin and choking him harder. “Mine,” he repeats.
Chin struggles, tipping his chin defiantly upwards. No words come out, but Chin’s fangs slide out. It makes Jenna falter backwards – she’s not used to seeing that feral look in Chin’s eyes and the hungry look on his face. It doesn’t even cause Steve to hesitate. He presses his forearm tighter against Chin’s windpipe and Jenna watches helplessly as both Kono and Danny try to pry him off of Chin.
Jenna didn’t sign up for this.
She’s here to look for the existence of spirits and to see if she can find some kind of peace when it comes to the personal turmoil she’s been experiencing. With that in mind (and to the cacophony of chaos around her), she leaves the room, locks herself in the women’s bathroom, and counts – all the way up to a hundred.
Maybe by the time she’s finished, things will be calmer.
There’s a small part of her that fears that, for Five-O, nothing will be normal or calm ever again.
The tension in the main office is thick the day after the disaster. Chin is hovering in the shadows with his arms crossed and his eyes tracking Danny around the room, much to Steve’s irritation. Kono keeps staring worriedly at Chin, and Jenna’s foot is tapping away nervously. Danny, for his part, is still twitchy after his fight with Sang Min and the way Steve keeps checking him for scratches every two minutes makes him want to check Steve’s head for any residual sense.
They’ve been sitting in the office for twenty minutes and no one’s said a word.
“He doesn’t feed from Danny.” Steve says, breaking the silent detente.
“Excuse me, what?” Danny reacts instantly, glowering at Steve. “I’m sorry, Steven, but did you stop to think, for one minute with that pea-sized brain of yours, that whether or not Chin feeds from me is my decision? My blood doesn’t have any residual wolf traces in it. It’s full human, and...”
“And it’s your neck, Danny! I know a thing or two about immortals!” Steve interrupts, the volume of his voice already set to eleven. “Rachel’s told me about injuries to that area! Those don’t go away easily or at all...” He weakens when Danny shoves out his wrist, where the two puncture marks are. “And...”
“And you don’t like it,” Danny interprets, yanking his sleeve down to cover his wrist again. “Steven, I’m aware of the fact that neck wounds tend to linger. It’s why I’m not stupid enough to offer it to a vampire! My point stands. I’m immortal, losing a pint or two of blood doesn’t really do much except make me look as pale as a lily. Seeing as I’m already in the running for haole of the year, what’s the harm?”
Steve glares in reply. “I don’t...”
“...like it,” Danny finishes, along with Steve. “Yeah, cue up the orchestra and play a shocking refrain. I got that part.”
They glare at each other, ignoring everyone else in the room. They probably would’ve continued to do so if it weren’t for Kono. Danny loves her and hates her at the same time for getting in the middle of all this, mostly because he’s not done being pissed at McGarrett.
“Can you two please have this fight later?” she snaps. “There are bigger issues here. My cousin has just been turned, and you two can’t stop for a second and focus on someone other than yourselves? This isn’t about you. It might’ve started with you, Steve, but Chin’s been dragged into this mess, which means that we all have.” She sounds like she’s barely holding it together, but the way she’s defensively crossing her arms over her chest and the fraught and angry look on her face clearly telegraphs that she doesn’t want any sympathy. “The logistics about how we feed Chin or what window treatments he needs to have put into his apartment will come later. Can we please figure out how to take this son of a bitch down, so he can’t hurt anyone else that we care about?”
“We know that Wo Fat is still on the island,” Jenna speaks up tentatively. She’s managed to tone down the nervous fidgeting, but still sounds apprehensive. “Look, I know that I’m not part of your team. I’m just someone who wants something, but...but I feel like this is partially my fault,” she says, glancing at Chin briefly. She looks away almost immediately, like she can’t bear to look at his ashen-like pallor.
Danny rubs a hand over his forehead, trying to put his emotions aside. Considering he practically runs on emotion, it’s no small task. Past all this, he has to worry about his relationship with Steve. After the altercation in the office, he’d stayed at his own apartment the night before and Steve is none too pleased with that fact.
Add in that Danny’s worried that Wo Fat might attack any minute and he’s acting like he’s had a heavy dose of speed.
“I have an idea,” Jenna says. She’s been talking about logistics and plans, but Danny’s tuned her out. At least, he had until suddenly she’s looking at Danny warily, like she’s about to say something that he really won’t like. “He wants Steve. We give him Steve.”
“Okay, I see something wrong with that,” Danny says, raising his hand like he’s objecting to the goddamn sauce on the sandwich and not them dangling his mate in front of the psychopathic murderer who wants him dead. “We’re not handing him Steve on a platter!” He can see Steve opening his mouth and Danny knows Steve well enough to know that he’s ready to throw himself into the fray. “No. No! Steve, no, you’re pissed that he did this to Chin, fine, but if ever you listened to me about procedure and backup, now is the time. We’re not using you as bait. Use...use me!”
“No,” Steve growls. “Case closed.”
“What, so I don’t get a say?” Danny scoffs. “You get to veto my involvement, but you? You just get to do this?”
“He wants me, Danny. He stops going through my family to get through me. He’s already tried to kill you. Why else would he break out Sang Min?” Steve says heatedly, growing angrier by the second. “He tried to take you out. I’m not giving him a second chance. We’re going to use what we have. He thinks you’re dead, Danny. He thinks Chin is against me.” Steve searches the room and though there’s a faint hint of annoyance on both the mentioned men’s faces, they don’t look like they’re about to kill Steve at the drop of a hat.
Danny has a bad feeling he’s not going to like seeing this plan in action.
“Chin, I want you to run with that,” Steve says. “Get out there and run your mouth about wanting to finish me off. Spread the word that you’ll know where I’m going to be.”
“I’ll run surveillance, see what I can get,” Jenna offers, an apprehensive smile on her face.
Danny wants to know what she’s so guilty for, but he has a feeling he doesn’t want to go near that potential can of worms. He keeps an eye on her as she leaves, followed by Chin and Kono.
Since yesterday, Kono hasn’t drifted more than two feet from Chin’s side. Danny’s not sure how safe that is when Chin is still getting his cravings under control, but he has to admire the way that they really take ohana to heart out here. When they’re gone, Danny turns to face Steve and address the issue they’ve been tucking under the carpet for about thirty-six hours.
Steve, predictably, has already wandered off to get ready to storm the metaphorical castle.
Danny follows him to the weapons room and leans his weight against the frame of the door, gnawing on his lower lip as he debates exactly what he can possibly say to smooth the situation over. ‘Sorry your co-worker got turned into a vampire and I nearly got taken out in an attempt to drive you mad with grief?’ ‘That crazy maniac might not have succeeded this time, but he’s still out there?’
Danny’s coming up short (and thank god no one’s around to make a pun on that one).
“Steve,” Danny says under his breath. “Is this our future? Every time I do something that pisses you off, you spend a week not talking to me and delicately fondling grenades?”
He gets a grunt in reply.
“Look, I get that you go flying into a spiral of possessive rage whenever you so much as smell anyone else on me,” Danny says, pushing himself away from the door and wandering inside until he’s standing in Steve’s shadow where he reaches out and absently fixes Steve’s shirt where it’s slightly wrinkled. “I’m immortal, Steve, and you’re not dying anytime soon if I have something to say about it. So, and I say this as nicely as possible, get the fuck used to it,” he snaps.
That gets Steve’s attention.
Danny scrapes his teeth over his lower lip as he bares it and readies himself for an argument. What he’s not prepared for is Steve to drop the jousting pole and the very sharp sword to the ground and stride forward in one fell swoop.
“Whoa, hey! Weapons! Weapons of mild destruction!” Danny protests, ready to argue some more up until the moment that Steve grabs him by the hips and pins him to the door. He’s effectively silenced with a possessive kiss that tells Danny that Steve is still planning on being the kind of guy who claims first and asks later.
Danny grabs at Steve’s hair, tugging on it to try and earn some leverage.
“Hey,” Danny gets out hoarsely, hooking one leg around Steve’s calf to pin him in against Danny’s body. “What the hell, what are you doing?”
“Exactly what you said, Danny,” Steve says. He sounds so calm that it’s pissing Danny off. “Getting the fuck used to it.”
Danny feels as if somehow they’ve skipped a step in the middle of this. He’s supposed to keep talking until his voice is hoarse and Steve is supposed to make a couple dozen faces that are actually pretty damn amusing. Steve isn’t supposed to be fondling Danny’s ass like he is – a move which is definitely against script, though Danny can’t find it in him to complain.
Steve’s got a good handle of the situation if his hold on Danny is any indication. The way he slides his thumb slowly up the curve of Danny’s ass before allowing it to descend straight down the middle in the direction of no-man’s-land is just one more sign that Steve needs to learn about inappropriate workplace activities. Danny bows his head forward and leans it against Steve’s shoulder with his cheek rubbing against the comforting fabric of his shirt.
“Steve,” Danny gets out, repeating a mantra of sensible facts in his mind. They have to focus on the task at hand. “Steven!” he chokes out when Steve grabs him and hauls him closer, sliding a hand in between their bodies to grope at Danny’s dick. “Do you want to follow this plan or not?”
“I’m not so good at following,” Steve mumbles against the shell of Danny’s earlobe, biting at the spot of his neck just below.
Danny rolls his eyes. “Yeah, Steve, me and the free world know that.”
“So?” Steve asks, gripping at Danny’s hips -- the intent to mark clear from the press of his fingertips against Danny’s skin -- pushing aside fabric in order to sneak those wayward fingers in and get much closer.
Danny wants to smack his head against the wall. Actually, no, he doesn’t. He wants to demand that Steve take him home and fuck him until they’re both screaming, but if they want Jenna’s plan to work, they can’t. They can’t because there are steps they’re going to have to take. Steve nudges his stance forward and suddenly it’s very clear how hard Steve is.
Danny really wishes he hadn’t known that. It’s going to make turning him away even harder (what is it with him and the bad puns, today?) and Danny’s not about to be distracted, either.
“Steve,” he says past the immense desire he has to say ‘fuck it’ and just screw here in front of the open weapons cabinet. “I need to make like a groundhog and disappear. If you want Wo Fat to think I’m dead, I need to go underground.”
“Where?” Steve asks, nearly growling.
“Rachel’s is probably safest. She likes to keep off the radar because, well,” Danny says with a rueful smile, “Rachel’s made more than her share of enemies in her time as I’m sure you can guess from her winning personality.”
“I’m not the one who slept with her for three centuries.”
“Two,” Danny corrects, pinching Steve’s ass. “And I’m sleeping with you, now, so it looks like my taste is still pretty shitty.”
That earns a derisive scoff that’s huffed against his neck.
“You think that’s funny, do you, big guy?” Danny teases, using the lapse in high tensions to untangle his legs from Steve’s waist and set both his feet on solid ground. “Because I’m not even sure I’m joking, just yet.” He pushes Steve away with a flattened palm and surveys the room to debate how armed he wants to be when he goes to Rachel’s. “Look, I’ll get Rach to buy a burner phone and she’ll contact you with the information. While Chin is out there spreading a pretty story about hating your guts, I’m gonna pretend to be dead.”
“Well,” Steve says, cocking his brow upwards. “More dead.”
“Yes, thank you, Captain Pedant.”
Steve presses his lips together as he idly lets the backs of his knuckles trail over the exposed skin of Danny’s arm, causing shivers up Danny’s spine. “I don’t like this,” he says, for what has to be the seventh time since that morning.
“I know,” Danny sighs. “And I like it even less. I swear to god, Steve, if you get yourself killed because I don’t have your back, I’m going to make sure the afterlife is definitively unpleasant for you.”
The space between them is too wide, but Danny knows if he closes it, he won’t want to leave and if he doesn’t leave, then someone is inevitably going to find out that he’s not dead. If they’re going to use Steve as bait, then Danny’s not willing to be the one to ruin the plans. He presses a palm to Steve’s chest to keep space between them, even if Steve keeps trying to be a thorn in his side and press closer.
“Steven,” he lectures sternly.
“I’ll come with you.”
“No, you’ll act like you’re supposed to. You’ll act like you’re inconsolable with the grief of losing me in a highly secure location so Wo Fat doesn’t strike while you’re pretend-sobbing into a bowl of Cherry Garcia,” Danny says, pushing back with his fingertips every time Steve surges forward. It’s a sway of an ebb and flow – enough to make Danny grin like an idiot. “Steve. Do not make me tie you up.”
Steve grins that goofy smile that makes Danny’s heart beat three times too fast. “I might like that.”
Danny shakes his head and starts to pack up all the weapons he might need if he has to defend himself at Rachel’s (even though he’s got no doubts that Rachel can defend herself and Grace better than he ever could). “Don’t be an idiot. Of course you’ll like it; when you and I can be in the same space together again, it’ll be the first thing we do.” He’s rambling idly as he packs, now, barely paying attention to Steve. “I’ll tie all fours so that even if you shift, you won’t be able to get loose and...”
He’s interrupted from putting his broadsword in his duffel bag by Steve bending over and kissing him, pushing upwards until he’s backed Danny to the wall. His hands on Danny’s hips, he grips on tight and if this is a goodbye kiss, then it’s definitely the best in Danny’s books.
When Steve decides the kiss is over – and Steve is definitely the one who decides because Danny’s got no goddamn say in it, seeing as he’s too busy trying to stay vertical – they stand there silently with only the sound of their heavy breathing between them.
“We’ll end this, Danno,” Steve says confidently, even though this is the most unsure he’s ever looked in his life. “I’ll bring you home to me.”
“Make Chin’s sacrifice worth it,” Danny says, the sharpness of his words betraying the need to blame someone. He’s not brave enough to shoulder it all himself and not cruel enough to lie it all on Steve’s back, but he needs them both to accept that it’s their faults. “Steve, I trust you,” he says, offering an encouraging smile as he tips Steve’s chin upwards with two fingers. “We’ll be okay.”
“Yeah?” Steve replies warily.
“If we’re not, I’m taking out this whole island in retaliation,” he says, cupping Steve’s cheek firmly and memorizing his features -- just in case.
When he realizes his memory will never do justice to the real thing, he eases back and picks up the duffel bag in hand, clenching it tightly to avoid doing something cowardly like deciding to stay put and risk everyone’s lives as a result. He’ll never forgive himself if he gets any of them killed in the permanent way.
He manages to make it out of the building without turning back and doesn’t even call Steve when he gets to Rachel’s. That lasts all of two hours and Danny has never loved Rachel more than he does the moment she hands a prepaid cell to him with a sympathetic look.
“Call him and stop moping,” she instructs. “Grace is beginning to worry.”
“It’s been two hours, I’ll look desperate,” he protests.
Rachel leans down in front of him, clasps him by the cheek, and presses a chaste kiss to his forehead. “Daniel. You are desperate,” she reminds him.
Well, if he’s going to be desperate, there’s no reason he can’t be desperate and talk to Steve, so he calls him and has one of the world’s most cryptic conversations that lasts all of ten too-short minutes. They can’t talk too much longer in case Steve’s calls are being traced, and during the time they never discuss anything too personal or exchange names.
Danny hates it. He hates it and he wants it to be over immediately.
The first day passes like molasses and the second isn’t much better. Three plods to four, but Danny still hasn’t heard anything. By day five, Danny is genuinely considering going on a one-man mission to bring down Wo Fat. The only consolation he has is that Steve calls in daily to check in and give Danny proof that he’s still alive.
Day six is the worst of them all and Rachel actually ties him down to the bed. It wouldn’t be so humiliating if Grace hadn’t wandered in and started to color at his bedside like nothing was the matter – he genuinely worries for the world if she does turn out to be immortal, given that her upbringing has been untraditional, to say the least.
And then, on day seven, Danny gets the best phone call in the world.
“It’s time,” Steve says. “Meet me at Malaekahana. And Danny...”
“Bring everything you’ve got.”
Danny’s ready in record time, but before he can get out the door, he makes a stop in the doorway of Grace’s bedroom and takes a moment to memorize this -- just in case. “Danno,” Grace says, looking up from her homework. She’s wielding a pink pencil like a weapon and Danny has never been prouder of her than this moment. “You look worried.”
“Yeah, well, Danno has to go and make sure that Uncle Steve doesn’t die,” he says, leaving the duffel in the hallway as he closes the distance between them. He smoothes back her hair and presses a kiss to her forehead. “Monkey, I need you to do me a favor.”
“Anything, Danno,” she swears, turning in her seat to look at him.
“If anything happens to me, I want you to look after Rachel, okay?”
Grace purses her lips together and gives Danny a hilarious look, like she’s concerned about what’s going on in his brain. “But Rachel’s way braver than me,” she says matter-of-factly. “You, too. She’s even stronger than a fae.”
“I don’t know about that,” Rachel says from the doorway. “But I will take the compliment.”
She looks at him in that disarming way that she has. After four hundred years and change, Danny doesn’t doubt that she can read him with a single look and he stands there with his soul bared to her and he knows that she understands what’s about to happen. To her credit, she doesn’t appear to be that troubled over it.
“I always liked you best, Daniel,” Rachel confesses with a fond smile. “Even if I have had to save your arse more times than I can count.”
“But it’s such a nice ass.”
“Danno,” Grace whines from her chair.
“Yeah, yeah, I know, not in front of the children,” Danny replies with a wistful smile on his face. He turns his attention back to Rachel, heart in his throat, and knows that he needs to do this. “If he dies and I live? It’s not going to be a pretty sight. I have to do this.”
“I know,” Rachel agrees simply. “My only advice is this: do it well,” she says, a grave look on her face. “You’ve watched whole civilizations crumble. You’ve seen revolutions. You’ve absorbed enough power to be great and watched the world change. If anyone can do this for him, Daniel, it’s you.”
“I’m not as strong as you, though,” Danny points out.
“You don’t have to be,” Rachel replies. “You just have to be strong enough to survive today. This isn’t a goodbye. I’m not letting you say goodbye to me.”
“Rachel,” Danny says as he grits his teeth together and tries to fight past the frustration she’s so talented at evoking in him.
She shakes her head stubbornly before lifting her chin with heavy-handed superiority, a move she mastered long before she ever met him. “No,” is all she has to say. “I refuse to send you off to your doom with you thinking that all is well and we have closure. You go out there and you fight, Danny Williams,” she says, a determined and terrifying glint in her eye. “And you win.”
He opens his mouth to subvert her demands and say goodbye, but she clamps her palm over it and marches him straight for the door. “Rachel,” he protests when he finally gets a chance to. “Please,” he exhales. Danny’s aware that getting Rachel to change her mind is next to impossible when she’s decided. Now is going to be no exception.
She stands by the front door with her arms crossed and an arch look on her face. “Yes, Daniel?”
“Nothing, dear,” he sighs. “I’ll see you later,” he says dutifully, even going so far as performing a mock salute – even if that pisses her off, maybe he does it especially because he knows how much it makes her livid.
He turns and marches to the Camaro and doesn’t look back once he’s sure that his sword is securely fastened to his belt. Danny had considered going in with as many weapons as possible, but in the end, he has to trust in the weapon he has. Steve’s going to be there and he knows there’ll be back-up waiting in the wings.
The drive to Malaekahana is the longest Danny’s ever endured, even if he’s only travelling five miles, all told. His legs are trembling, he’s cracking his knuckles in such an annoying way that he’s lucky that Steve isn’t here to forcibly stop him. He keeps dreaming up worst case scenarios and somehow amending them until they’re truly death-defyingly scary.
At this rate, Danny almost wishes someone would kill him before he comes up with a fourteenth variation of how this can all go wrong.
He parks beside Steve’s truck and quickly exits the car to join Steve – who is in the process of hauling every weapon imaginable from the trunk.
“Hey,” says Danny.
It’s like they’ve been seeing each other every day. It’s like no time at all has passed. In actuality, Danny wants to plaster Steve to the side of the car and fuck his mouth until he’s choking on Danny. Realistically, they just don’t have time for that. He settles for a quick grope of Steve’s ass when he leans in for a kiss.
“Danny,” Steve says coolly.
“Oh, for...what, so now I’m not allowed to touch you?” Danny says, indignation running strong. “Since when are you Mr. Restrained when I practically have to peel you off me and re-explain the concept of a personal bubble on a daily basis?”
Danny sighs and mutters a quick prayer under his breath. “Okay, well, can I least give you a goodb...”
While Danny might not be seeing his fantasy through, the tables turn alarmingly quick as Steve presses him firmly against the exterior of the car, digging his forearm into Danny’s windpipe. Danny’s patience is already at an all-time low and this little move makes it so that he’s bordering on a kind of irritated rage that Williams men are excellent at.
“Are you fucking kidding me?” Danny rasps out.
Steve has a wild look to him. Danny wonders if this is what he looked like in those first years, when the wolf was still young in him and the balance between animal and man had yet to be found. If Danny looks past the wildness, he can easily spot the fear and panic. Suddenly, Danny understands why he can’t say goodbye.
He can’t end something that’s just starting -- even if it’s only with words.
If he condemns this to failure, then they walk into the fight with that looming over their heads. Danny takes in a deep breath and pushes down every last selfish desire to find some kind of closure before it all goes down.
“Steve,” Danny says, forcibly pushing his arm off. “If I can’t say...” He gestures to indicate what he might have said, “Then I need to say something else.”
“Make it quick, Danny,” Steve says curtly. “Jenna says that Wo Fat is on his way now that Chin’s established my location.”
Danny wonders if every SEAL team that served with Steve was just as lucky to have such a talkative and warm leader. He pushes past the desire to make a sarcastic quip or to surround himself in the safety of a joke. There isn’t time for that and if Steve won’t let him say goodbye, then he’ll go one better.
Steve’s already in motion as he slams the trunk shut and begins to storm out to the dusty plains before them. They’ve tracked several murder investigations through these parts and they unsettle Danny due to the number of bluffs and sniper points available.
Right now, they’re standing in the dangerous open plains of the valley.
“Steve,” Danny exhales, chasing after him and trying to think of the best way to say what he wants to. He wants to ask whether Kono is in place, he needs to ask if Chin is okay, but most of all, he needs to tell Steve that if all goes wrong, then the one constant lies in that Danny loves him.
He refuses to let the day pass without Steve knowing that.
It’s all he gets out before Steve goes down -- hard. One minute, he’s standing at attention with his flak-vest covering the important parts of him, the next he’s hitting the ground with his knees and blood beginning to pour out from both his shoulder and a graze to his neck.
“Danny,” Steve says, eyes wide in shock.
The panic is front and dead center, easy to see (and quick to break Danny’s heart). He’s sure that it’s mirrored on his own face.
He scrambles to slide into his jacket – a modified version that protects his neck with a brace-like appendage – kicking up dust in the sprint to Steve’s side. He only manages to fasten one side of the Velcro as he slides in, like he’s back to playing baseball in downtown Newark. The cloud of dust should obscure any sniper shots while they get a handle on the situation. “Steve!” Danny shouts desperately, searching over his body to appraise the damage.
The bullet hasn’t gone through. The bullet is still inside Steve.
“Oh, god. Oh, shit,” Danny swears freely. “Steve, babe, tell me it’s not, tell me it isn’t...”
Steve grimaces heavily. Danny can visibly see each wave of pain coursing through him. Every minute that passes, Danny feels weaker and weaker, sick to his stomach in something like sympathetic pains.
“It’s very interesting, isn’t it?”
“You asshole,” Danny swears as he looks up from where he’s trying to stop the bleeding from Steve’s shoulder. The wound is festering and is tinged with necrotic tissue, tainting it black and seemingly poisonous. “Silver?” In the haze of the dust, there’s a shadow of a man. Danny’s never met Wo Fat, but he’s seen enough pictures to know him on sight.
“What else?” Wo Fat replies with a smile that might’ve had a chance at being charming on anyone else. “When I realized the close connection you and McGarrett have, I began to look into some of the history of such rare bondings. Do you know what I found?”
Danny’s having trouble seeing straight. The world is swimming around him and though he’s struggling to keep Steve upright, he’s beginning to worry that he’s gripping onto Steve like a lifeline. He’s sweating heavily, the nausea growing worse, and he can begin to feel a dull physical pain assaulting his shoulder.
It can’t be a coincidence.
“The more I hurt him,” Wo Fat says, drawing his gun on Steve, “The more I hurt you. Would you like to see?”
Danny opens his mouth to scream hoarsely, but it’s too late. Wo Fat fires at Steve’s thigh, sending him to the ground – left to do nothing more than writhe and let out the basest of whimpering sounds. Steve, the SEAL that Danny knows, would never let pain show like this. The silver must be making Steve suffer to such a degree that the wolf has assumed control.
“Stop,” Danny begs. “Stop, before we kill you.”
“Your woman is being held captive,” Wo Fat informs him. “Miss Kalakaua, I believe. Three of my men are currently guarding her. Chin Ho Kelly is still in Honolulu, given that he’s come into contact with an alarming amount of silver. Chains, I believe, as Hesse has promised me. As for your other associates...well, Mr. Williams, what help are they to you, now?”
Danny draws his sword in a futile effort to fight back. He staggers to his feet, standing in front of Steve’s body protectively. Though he’s swaying shakily, he manages to center his focus and, with trembling fingers, he turns the point of his sword on Wo Fat. It gets his attention, fangs popping out, and Danny reminds himself that he’s fought harder battles.
“You’ll feel that bullet soon, Detective Williams,” Wo Fat warns. “I’d make a move while you still have a chance.”
Danny begins to list to the side, but he takes a run at Wo Fat, blade straight and true. Wo Fat fires one, two, three shots at Danny’s legs, but the unsteady nature of his steps mean that the first two miss. The third, though, lands. It lands right in his knee. While it won’t kill him, it’s going to hurt like a bitch.
He lets out a sharp shout of pain as he lands hard.
“It goes both ways, of course,” Wo Fat explains as he digs out a new clip. “The pain you feel, McGarrett will experience, as well. Hasn’t he got enough to worry about?”
“You son of a bitch,” Danny coughs out hoarsely. He tries to drag himself back to his feet, but all that he manages to do is scrape at the ground until there’s clay and dust under his fingernails. “You’re going to pay for this. You won’t survive.”
“Detective Williams,” Wo Fat says, yanking off the portion of the flak-vest covering Danny’s neck and pressing a thin blade to his skin. “I think that you’re very optimistic. It’s a valuable trait, of course, but flawed in this situation.”
Danny closes his eyes.
“Steve,” he calls over to the man behind him – curled up in a heap and no doubt trying to think of a way to save the day, even if he can barely function due to the pain. “Steve, listen to me...”
“No, Detective Williams, I think that everyone needs to listen to me right now.”
Danny’s feeling pretty goddamn out of it, so he thinks he can be excused for thinking that they had an angel intervening on their matters. It’s not a messenger from heaven, but it’s definitely a vision from hell. Danny blinks and tries to determine whether he’s actually seeing Governor Jameson standing on the bluff or whether he’s slid into a cozy hallucination.
If he is dreaming it up, then he’s doing a bang-up job when it comes to the impossible.
The Governor’s feet are a ways above the ground. She’s floating and surrounded by an effervescent glow that seems both radiant and rageful, at once. Danny uses the opportunity to scramble back to Steve’s side, leaving a bloody trail as he goes. He manages to get Steve’s head in his lap.
“Babe,” he exhales worriedly. “I keep trying to tell you I love you.”
“Danno, did you think I didn’t know?” Steve gets out. He sounds so small and weak that Danny closes his eyes to avoid looking at him and confirming that Steve is quickly on his way to giving up.
“What are you doing here?” Wo Fat turns to the Governor, confirming Danny’s worst fears. They’ve been in this together since the goddamn start. “This isn’t how we decided it would happen.”
“No, it isn’t,” the Governor agrees. “But let me tell you something. If you thought that you recruited an idiot as an ally, you were wrong. You were growing brazen. How many reports of your criminal doings did you think you could flaunt in my face before I would do something about it?”
Fae powers are a great and terrible secret, but Danny is beginning to see that the world is right to be wary of the species. Within seconds, the Governor does nothing more than set her feet on the ground and press both palms in Wo Fat’s direction, but she sends him tumbling backwards and his weapons scattering. Danny has to wonder if pride is really all this boils down to, but considering the intervention is saving his ass, he’s not sure he’s going to complain.
“Every morning, there they were on my desk – proof of your ill-doings. I went into this with you because you promised to keep yourself under the radar and benefit my intentions. You’ve done no such thing. In fact, it’s become clear that you want the power in your own hands. I should have seen that coming the minute you went after the McGarrett family, but I allowed you that one error. I’m not so generous that I’ll give you a second,” Governor Jameson informs Wo Fat, her tone icy and dangerous.
Instantly, the power has shifted.
“I let you put your hands all over my island’s infrastructure because you weren’t making waves, but I never agreed to this,” Governor Jameson warns. There’s an edge to her voice that sends chills down Danny’s spine. He’s grateful they never crossed her, because he’s not sure they would’ve made it out alive. “I never agreed to the execution of my task force. These men and women have been doing my work just as long as you’ve been doing what you like because I turned a blind eye, but those days are over.” With each word, her voice grows deeper, more imposing. “Especially not when it means that the little respect you had for me seems to have vanished.”
With every step she takes towards him, Danny almost feels a touch of sympathy for Wo Fat’s fate.
“No,” Wo Fat says, on the cusp of begging and Danny has never been more eager to hear a criminal plead for his life. “No, you can’t do this.”
“As ranking fae on this island and Governor of its people, I think you’ll find that yes, I can,” she says. The Governor’s palms look practically nuclear as they glow red and angry. She turns them away from her body, towards Wo Fat with a hard push, blasting a wave of steady light and sound and force with it.
The whole area turns apocalyptic in a flash – too bright to look at by half. Danny closes his eyes for mere seconds, but when he opens them, there isn’t a trace of Wo Fat where he’d once stood and the angry red glow of the surrounding area has faded to a calm normality.
“What the hell...?” he mutters, gripping hold of his knee.
There isn’t a man, but there is a pile of char and ash and rubble where he once stood. Danny stares up at the Governor fearfully as she approaches, grabbing hold of Steve’s biceps to haul him in tighter – as if he could protect him, even if he’s on the verge of passing out.
“Ma’am?” Danny manages weakly.
She presses a palm to his forehead and Danny thinks -- that’s it, I’m done, goodbye Hawaii, goodbye Grace, goodbye Steve -- but the only thing that happens is the pain in his knee abates. The sick feeling remains until the moment that the Governor does the very same to Steve. She actually goes so far as to pry the bullet out of his shoulder with her bare hands.
“Governor, I need to help...”
“Kono Kalakaua and Chin Ho Kelly? Their situations are being dealt with by my aide,” she promises distractedly, dismissing the silver bullet over her shoulder as she leans down to Steve’s eye-level. “Steve, I want to apologize. I should have intervened before your father was killed, but I didn’t. I thought that things could still be salvaged. I can promise you that the days of Wo Fat running my island are over.”
Steve stares warily at Danny, as if asking silent permission to take the Governor to task for ever being in bed with Wo Fat in the first place.
Danny shakes his head slightly to discourage that notion, testing out his knee tentatively. “Ma’am, at the risk of sounding ungrateful...what did you just do?”
“I cleaned up,” she says. It’s not what Danny meant and he’s fairly sure that she knows that, but he doesn’t make a move to ask again and she gives no sign that she’s going to clarify. “Boys, my office on Monday. I’d like to discuss an increased role in the policing of supernatural matters, going forward. Nine AM, sharp. Don’t be late. You wouldn’t like me when I’m angry,” she warns with a beguiling smile on her face.
“We’ll be there,” Steve promises hoarsely. He’s managed to work himself into a sitting position and is practically standing at attention, even with his ass on the ground and blood staining every part of his body. “Ma’am.”
“Lieutenant Commander,” she says.
And then, in the blink of an eye, she’s gone and the only sign she was ever there is a faint swirling of dust in the stead of her body.
Danny doesn’t even know if he can begin to process what’s just happened, but he’s aware of this: they’re alive and he doesn’t feel like he’s about to puke at any given moment. As far as he’s concerned, that’s a win.
“Hey, Danno,” Steve says as he picks himself up and winces as he begins to brush off whole segments of his body covered in blood and dust. Danny’s too busy with a thorough onceover of his body – paying special attention to his neck to make sure that he’s not dead and having a really pleasant afterlife dream.
He manages to give Steve his full attention after the third ‘Daniel Williams!’ shouted at him in Steve’s best Navy-drill sergeant voice.
“What?” Danny snaps.
“Right back at you,” is all Steve has to say. “But I think you know, already.” He limps his way back to the Camaro and waits expectantly at the driver’s side with his hand out for the keys.
Danny can put up with it. Danny can put up with a lot of things right now, seeing as Steve’s heart is still beating and the man that’s wanted them dead is nothing more than a bad memory and a mess of a burden in one of Oahu’s natural parks.
“Steve, about Monday...” he says as they get into the car.
“Trust me, Danno, we’ll be there an hour early.”
“Okay, good. I didn’t think there was a woman out there scarier than Rachel. I have – I have never been happier to be wrong,” Danny says with a strangled laugh. From the look Steve gives him from the driver’s seat, it looks like he agrees wholeheartedly.
It’s about as far as goodbye as he can get, and it feels fucking perfect.
When they get back to Steve’s place, Danny gets out of the car and shrugs his shoulders back, adjusts his shirt, and fiddles with his tie. Then, he waits for Steve to come around the car. He waits for the perfect moment to haul back his arm and punch him right in the face. Danny shakes out his hand and breathes deeply while he calms down.
Steve rubs his cheek, glowering at Danny. “What the hell was that for? I thought everything was good! I thought we were good!”
“You almost died, I’m mad about that,” Danny replies instantly. “Let me explain this simply so even your Neanderthal brain cells will get this. When I get mad and you’re directly involved in the reasons why, my desire to punch you increases. Hence—”
“I’m sorry, did you just say ‘hence’?”
“—I will punch you in the face as much as I goddamn want when you nearly get killed and give me an immortal-style heart attack!” Danny finishes, his voice jumping two octaves over one sentence. “Look at you! Look at your wounds, Steven, those were silver bullets and the Governor’s little light show didn’t heal that graze. You’re probably in pain right now!”
Steve’s answering wince is proof enough.
“Get inside,” Danny sighs. “Get inside and I’ll patch you up.”
Steve obediently makes his way in, seemingly cowed into following orders, given Danny’s mood. Danny makes sure that none of the ordinance in his car is going to go up in flames, checks his own wounds in the mirror, and then follows Steve inside in time to see the man stripping off his shirt.
The movements are delicate and by the time Steve gets down to his boxers, Danny can see that though the wounds are healed, the entry holes are still gaping open wide and probably feel just as bad as they look.
“Danny,” Steve says wearily, looking across the short space between them, giving him a half-desperate look. “Come here?”
Against Danny’s better judgment (he knows if he gets too close, Steve will get him distracted from patching them both up), he goes. He manages to prod Steve upstairs so that they’re not giving the neighbors a real show. Steve shuffles along with his boxers halfway down his thighs and Danny spares a thought towards being pleased that Steve does have moments where he isn’t Mr. Perfect.
This, right here, with his dick hanging out and an exhausted set to his body, is one of them.
Danny will be damned if it doesn’t make him fall just a little bit more in love with the idiot. He shakes his head and curses himself for being so soft after four hundred years. He directs Steve to the bed with a wordless gesture of his fingers and parts ways to head for the bathroom, stockpiling enough gauze and band-aids to build a fort.
“Steve, grunt if you’re about to pass out,” Danny calls lightly, trying to keep the mood up. He needs to not think about how many of Steve’s wounds have lingering silver in them – he’s not sure he believes the Governor put them back to full health, seeing as Danny’s knee is still echoing with painful twinges.
Mostly, he needs to not think about how close he came to losing Steve. If he can keep his mind away from that dark place, Danny’ll be in good shape.
Steve manages to stay conscious for a whole seven minutes, which is actually fairly impressive given that a lesser man would’ve fainted from the pain hours earlier. Danny smiles fondly at Steve because the idiot in front of him – the idiot who bonded with him – would never take the easy road out.
Danny takes advantage of the time and gets out as much silver as he can, trusting Steve’s body to do the lion’s share of the healing over time. It won’t be instantaneous and it won’t be without a good deal of pain, but Steve will be alive. Danny sets aside the cloth and bowl of tepid (and filthy) water when he’s done, making room in the bed for his exhausted body.
He tries not to focus on the fact that they were dead men. If not for the Governor, they wouldn’t have survived, and he’s still not sure what to make of the situation going forward. He doesn’t know if this is just a temporary detente or whether the Governor is lining up her eggs in new baskets.
“Danny,” Steve says in a hoarse croak. “You’re thinking too much.”
“Who are you to pass judgment, huh?” Danny replies, leaning down to pry off his socks. Every single muscle in his body is screaming in soreness and the easy task before him seems gargantuan. “I’m pretty sure you never stop thinking. It’s plan-this and mission-that and you’re probably sizing up a threat and figuring out how to take it down as I speak, aren’t you?”
Steve looks at Danny in a way that says he’s right.
It also says that Danny is said threat.
“I don’t like that look,” Danny says warily, flinging his socks across the room. He’ll clean it up later when he doesn’t want to sleep like the dead that he is. He briefly debates trying to get his blood-crusted pants off, but that seems like too much work for one day. “Steve, what are you doing?”
“Thinking,” he grunts.
“Great, so we’ve established that both of us can think. Wonderful. Amazing. Can we move on?” Danny coaxes as he gives himself permission to collapse in bed and let exhaustion start to creep up on him. Steve is still looking at him like a task in waiting and Danny lets out a loud groan, picking up a pillow to shove it over his face and muffle the sound. “Steve!”
“Danny,” Steve says. “Tomorrow, I’m going to make a phone call. Then, Rachel will head over to your apartment and send the rest of your stuff. That way, you can officially move in.”
That gets Danny’s attention. Instantly, he shoves the pillow away from his face and stares at Steve with all the horror a statement like that deserves.
“Whoa. No. Steve, excuse me?” he scoffs. “You do remember that you don’t get to just say things and expect them to happen. Wishing is not a way of getting things done around here, and I swear to god, Steve, do not bring up the time we earned a favor from a djinn,” Danny cuts Steve off before he can even open his mouth.
“It’s not a wish, Danny. It’s common sense,” Steve explains.
Danny closes his eyes tightly and tries to work out why not, but the truth is that he can’t manage to find a good enough argument against. He lets out a sigh and pins Steve to the bed with a splayed palm to his bare chest. When he rests his cheek to the warm skin below, he takes great pleasure in the steady beat of his heart.
“You’re not arguing,” Steve points out lazily. His words are slurred, like he’s back on a path to sleep. “Why aren’t you arguing?” he asks suspiciously.
“Because every once in a blue moon, you have a good idea,” Danny confesses. He hides his delighted smile against Steve’s chest as he tries to ignore the pleasure he gets from mundane fantasies of a day-to-day life with Steve. “You know, seeing as you and I are bonded...”
“Oh, because of that. Only because of that?”
“Only,” Danny confirms swiftly with a smug smirk on his face. He makes sure to turn his face in Steve’s direction so he sees it, but all it earns him is a swift and tired kiss. “Hey,” he exhales. “We need to have the team over. We need to check up on them and make sure everyone is still...” He trails off before he can say ‘alive’.
The guilt might just eat him whole if he says that.
Danny runs a palm over his face as he adjusts and lies alongside Steve. He picks a point on the ceiling and stares it down, as though he can wear it to pieces with a glare alone. “How the hell are we supposed to apologize to Chin for this?” he asks, voice raw. He feels like rage and despair are waiting in the wings to tear him to pieces.
“I think,” Steve says in a calm and rational manner that doesn’t usually befit a McGarrett, “that I have to treat this like I did my father.”
“You mean, shoot a lot of people and nearly kill me?” Danny asks warily. “Can I veto this? My knee kind of hurts like a bitch, babe, I’m not ready for more Dukes of Hazzard mimicry.” He props himself up on one elbow to be able to look down on Steve while they talk – experiencing an immature moment of power from it.
Steve rolls his eyes so hard that it looks like it hurts.
“No, Danny,” he says, practically huffy as he gets defensive. “But we can’t let his sacrifice be in vain. We need to fight harder than ever before and show him that he’s always going to be a part of the team. Our ohana. And I want them here as soon as possible, Danny,” he says, sliding into command mode.
In this tone of voice, Danny knows that Steve is not to be messed with.
“As soon as we can, Danny, as soon as you’re ready for us to have guests in our home.”
Danny’s pretty sure that Steve’s gunned the relationship from zero to sixty without telling him. They’ve gone from accepting the bond to dating tentatively to planning to live together to ‘this is your home, too, Daniel Williams’.
“Okay, first off,” Danny says as he fidgets with the gauze at Steve’s neck to check on the dressing. “I still haven’t moved in. We may be bonded forever and ever like the idiots we are, but this is still your place and while I have the intention to move in, I thought we could take this slower. Secondly? There will never be any question about whether I’m okay having the team over. This extends to Kame, Max, and sometimes Fong. They are all okay. They aren’t okay until about ten in the morning, because I intend on waking you up with the dirtiest methods I can think of, but after ten, open doors.”
Steve is grinning like an idiot, so Danny guesses he’s saying the right things.
“We’ll bring ‘em over and we’ll apologize to Chin,” Danny says resolutely. “And, also, I think, I think that we have to tell Jenna that her research trip is a bust.” He exhales a long breath. For all that they’ve been looking into this with all the resources they’ve got, nothing’s panning out.
In all the years that Danny’s been alive, there’s been no evidence to confirm the existence of spirits. He’s really goddamn disappointed that the supernatural world isn’t about to make an exception in this case.
“Steve?” Danny asks, when Steve doesn’t reply. “Steven, are you even...” -- listening. He’s not, though, because he’s passed out. His fingers are curled and the crooked knuckles brush against Danny’s stomach in soft revolutions.
Danny wastes little time in adjusting the pillows and curling up with Steve as closely and as comfortably as he can get.
They get about five hours of sleep, combined, which is too much (considering the adrenaline pulsing through their systems) and not enough (because neither of them have been able to sleep well). It has to be enough, because the team has already arrived for a small barbeque and they’ve only just started to prepare the meal.
Rachel’s been dropping boxes by all day, Grace is helping with the condiments, and Kamekona is trying to fit individualized shaved ice into the freezer.
“Big guy,” Danny says, hands in the air sharply as he tries to gesture to the freezer and to the general laws of measuring that surround them. “They are not gonna fit. Please, please, I beg of you, if you make it so I have to stay up even later tonight to cook everything that thawed, I am not gonna be very warm and welcoming to your new franchise ideas.”
“Jersey, from what I hear, that’s not what you’re gonna be up late doing,” Kamekona says with an overdramatic wink.
Danny places both hands over Grace’s ears and gives Kame a pleading look. “Really?” he deadpans. “Seriously? In front of the children?”
“Danno’s delicate,” Steve pipes up from the lanai.
“You’re a celibate man, McGarrett!” Danny shouts in warning.
“Not in front of the children, huh?” Kono says with a bemused smile, taking a sip of her beer. They’ve mostly assembled in the kitchen, but Chin is out by the barbeque with Steve. For the most part, they seem locked in serious conversation and while Danny wants to go out and offer his apologies, he doesn’t want to ruin whatever delicate balance they’ve got going. “Hey, Danny, look...I’m sorry about...”
“I refuse to accept any apologies,” Danny insists, finally taking his hands off of Grace’s ears as he goes about splitting cheese for the burgers. “You said what you said, and let’s be honest. Maybe Steve and I can be a little self-centered. We needed to hear it.” He brings her into a tight one-armed hug, pressing a kiss to her temple. “We’re good,” he promises. “We’re always good.”
He turns back to staring worriedly at Chin and Steve, right up until Kono nudges him in the side with her elbow. “Go,” she whispers. “I can handle getting the cheese ready for the grill.”
It’s completely against his instincts – which are telling him to stay very far away – but he intrudes on the conversation just as Steve is saying something.
“...those first few years, they were the worst, but it...”
Steve trails off, which Danny takes as a signal to step in and help.
“Eventually, it sort of balances out,” Danny says. His fingers rest on the hilt of his sword as if in constant reminder that though he looks and walks and talks like any other person, he’s not normal. Neither is Steve and now Chin isn’t, either. “Look, Chin, it’s gonna be hard. I don’t want to sugar-coat it and I doubt Steve will, either. But you? You’re Chin Ho Kelly. And you’ll always have us.”
“Always,” Steve agrees stubbornly. “How are you? With the ...” He gestures to his neck.
Chin looks vaguely amused by Steve and Danny’s discomfort – like any other given day. “The cravings? I went to one of the Centers for Healthy Vampiric Feeding and enrolled to their registrar. I’ve been matched to the right blood type for my body and I signed up to receive three shipments a day.”
“And hey, anytime you want junk food...” Danny trails off as he offers out his wrist in jest. He takes no small pleasure in the way that it elicits a possessive growl from Steve. “Or not. I don’t think malasadas are good for you, even once they hit the bloodstream.” He drifts closer to Steve to wrap an arm around his waist.
Inside, Kono has pulled Jenna aside and the two of them look as though they’re deep in serious conversation.
“Is that...?” Chin asks uncertainly.
“Yeah, I think Kono is telling her,” Danny agrees, fingers pressing just that much tighter against Steve’s hip. “She can take it,” he says, though he’s pretty sure that he’s convincing himself more than anyone else, at this point. “You think she’ll stay on? I know we all agreed we’d ask, but you really think someone would stick around after working for the CIA for so long?”
“What’s not to like?” Steve asks, with a cock of his right eyebrow upwards. “We’re offering werewolves, vampires, immortals, and a dodgy alliance with a fae who might kill us any day.”
“Why am I still here?” Danny scoffs.
“Because you love me,” Steve murmurs, right into his ear. “Possibly, maybe a little.”
The responding shiver is all the confirmation Steve needs to know it’s true.
They watch silently as Jenna listens to what Kono is saying. There’s no mistaking the very instant that all hope leaves. Jenna’s shoulders slump forward, but soon enough there’s a hopeful look on her face – as if she’s determined to get through the pain on the spirit of good hope alone.
“Shit,” Danny exhales. “Four hundred years and life’s still not fair.”
They move inside as the burgers and hot dogs finish grilling. Whatever solemn pall might have been cast over the room earlier is gone by now, and it’s noisy when they re-enter. Rachel, Grace, and Kono are discussing surfing (Danny is going to have a heart attack for real this time, immortal or not), while Jenna and Kamekona are deep in a debate about conspiracy theories.
Chin brings the food inside and offers a controlled and fangless smile.
Danny lingers by the door with Steve as he takes in one breath, two breaths, and then a calming third as he tells himself that he deserves this. Steve presses a reassuring hand to the small of Danny’s back before he joins the fray and the noise level increases tenfold. By the time Danny gets there, it’s practically a parade of chaos.
It stays that way through the night.
The mood is buoyant and joyous. Despite the fear of the unknown path ahead, the team doesn’t seem inclined to think about it. They eat more than they should and tell stories until the early hours of the morning. It’s only Grace’s gigantic yawns that break up the party.
Rachel offers an apologetic look. “I’m sorry, it seems that even potentials can grow very tired once the midnight hour passes,” she says as she hurries Grace into her coat, pressing a kiss to Danny’s cheek as she readies them to leave. “I’ll bring the remainder of your things from my place in the morning, Daniel.”
“Much obliged, dear,” he replies with a respectful bow of his head.
He catches Steve watching him with a funny look on his face, but doesn’t get to ask him about it until they’ve said goodbye to the rest of the team. It’s two in the morning and Steve is taking his time forcibly stripping Danny of his clothes.
“Yes?” Steve replies dutifully, sneaking a hand down Danny’s pants and wrapping his hand around Danny’s dick.
“Wow, okay,” he gets out breathlessly, trying to get a hold on the English language before it fully escapes him in the face of what Steve is about to do to him. “You. You in the front hall. What was with that look?”
“Danny, my hand is on your dick. Do you really care?”
“Steven!” he barks.
“Maybe I like it when you go all Old World,” he confesses and by the twist of Steve’s hand, he definitely likes it enough to show Danny how much it pleases him. “A lot,” he growls, sliding his hand over Danny’s hip and out of his pants long enough to give him a two-handed shove onto the bed.
Danny gets exactly five seconds before Steve is on top of him.
He stays there the whole of the night and part of the next morning, too. By noon the next day, Danny can barely move and though he’s always been a quick healer, he marvels at the fact that somehow Steve McGarrett has found a way to subvert that. He’d shout at the man, but sometime around nine, Steve abandoned human form for the wolf and there’s a heavy heap of a wolf slumbering on Danny’s feet – curled around his cold toes to provide a kind of warmth.
It’s disgustingly endearing.
Danny makes a note to yell at Steve another day because – and he takes great pleasure in this knowledge – there are plenty more to come.
Danny comes in next Wednesday morning with his collar buttoned up tighter than usual, fingers passing over the starched cotton carefully. He’s trying to hide the fact that underneath the fabric is a definitive mark of Steve’s wolf-teeth carved into his skin, marking him as one of the pack. Steve’s scent is all over him and he’s caught Chin looking at him warily all morning.
It takes until noon for someone to say something.
“It’s kind of disgusting,” Kono says, throwing an arm over Danny’s shoulder and giving him a one-armed hug. “At the same time, I’m glad you figured out how to cope with Steve being...well, you know better than anyone.” She pries away the collar and peeks at the wound, which Danny’s left after treating it with some salve. “I can practically feel the ‘stay away’ vibes,” she adds, relinquishing his collar when she gives the mark one last look. “He did a good job.”
Rachel had been crystal clear on this rule. Danny knows that any wound to the neck will take nearly half a lifetime to heal. He’s happy to bear this one for as long as it will last.
“C’mon, we have work to do. The last thing we need to do is sit around discussing the shape and cut of Steve’s teeth,” he says, warily sure that he’s just resigned himself to that very fate by mentioning it aloud. He tries to conceal his stupid grin when the team starts talking about where else Danny might be marked, but he doesn’t hide it very well.
Honestly, he can’t bring himself to care.
Eight Months Later
“Just another Monday, huh,” Kono says with a wary look to her side.
Danny’s got his sword drawn, wincing heavily as he readjusts his hold on the hilt of it, the blinding heat of their surroundings making the metal hot to the touch. Steve’s shifted back to his wolf form, his clothes perilously close to being swallowed up by flames, and is standing protectively in front of Danny as if he can shield him.
Chin cocks his shotgun and stares forward unflinchingly.
Kono would love to know how the hell he does that, but maybe that’s just part of the newfound blind courage that comes of being undead.
Jenna’s lurking several paces behind, meekly stepping forward with her hand raised in the air. “Um, guys? I have a suggestion. I mean, I’m just spitballing here, but can we maybe talk to the dragon before we start stabbing things? I think, maybe, that it would be a good idea so we can stay alive.” She casts a glance to her side, where Steve’s wolf ears are pointed, Chin’s fangs are drawn, and Danny’s grip on his sword is practically fused. “Well,” she amends, “some of us.”
Steve’s growl turns angrier.
“I don’t speak wolf!” Jenna says, her eyes wide.
“He’s saying that if the thing even so much as touches me, he’s gonna rip its throat out, which is hilarious considering Steven thinks he can destroy a dragon, which aren’t even supposed to exist!” Danny shouts up at the dragon, which has turned its head in their direction, rearing back and lunging forward to let loose another stream of fire.
“Get out of the way! Go!” Chin orders.
Chin’s the last one out of the path of fire, but they’ve narrowly escaped it in time. The area they were just standing in is now licked with flames and Kono is beginning to think they’re incredibly outmatched. “I thought dragons didn’t exist! We’ve had four hundred years to figure out what’s lurking, no one’s ever said anything about dragons!” she shouts above the dragon’s angry roar.
“Nothing surprises me anymore,” Danny admits, adjusting his grip on the sword. Kono’s seen Danny walk through flames before, but he’d bitched about the pain for four hours afterward. She has a bad feeling he’s only thinking about the crazy part and not the consequences right now. “Okay, I’m taking a run at it.”
He’s studying the layout of the land, figuring out his way in, but is stopped by a very defensive wolf in his path.
“I’ll heal!” Danny snaps.
“Not without a hundred complaints first,” Chin mutters under his breath, to which Kono gives a snort of agreement. “Steve!” Chin shouts, when Kono elbows him in the side. Of all the people who stand a chance of getting through to him besides Danny, Chin’s typically the best bet. “He’s right. He’ll heal and I can’t go near the flames if I want to get out of here alive.”
Kono’s not even going to ask why sunlight isn’t a problem for Chin, but fire is. It’s one of those things that she’s sure has reason to it, but she’s not sure she cares that much. Sun good, fire bad does the trick in covering it.
Danny seems to be getting ready to take the offensive when the dragon rears back, showing his underbelly and what appears to be a less-armored portion than the rest of the scaly hide. When the dragon sinks back – digging its claws into the soil – it looks like it’s ready to let another plume of fire loose.
Kono really doesn’t want to keep taking chances. Law of large numbers (and their injury count) says that someone’s going to get hurt the more times the dragon goes on the offense.
As if aware that things need to change, Steve shifts from his wolf form into a very naked human -- directly in front of her.
“Steve,” Chin protests weakly.
“Um,” says Jenna.
Danny’s cursing away, watching the dragon and looking to Steve in turns as he takes long strides back to their weapons bag, digs out a set of clothes, and foists them on Steve, forcibly pushing them into his abdomen and sending him stumbling back two steps. “What part of mine do you not get?” Danny snaps. “Get dressed or learn to shift into clothes.”
Steve’s keeping a wary eye on the dragon (who’s huffing out smoke, as if charging up the reserves) as he dresses in a hurry.
There’s a stupidly excited look on his face.
It might be Danny’s influence, but Kono has come to dread that look because it means that nothing good is coming. “I got a thing,” Steve says with glee, rushing out to where the Camaro is parked some hundred feet away. “I’ll be back.”
“Oh god,” Danny says. If it weren’t for the fact that he has to lunge for the dragon’s forearm when it takes a swipe at them, he looks like he might have pressed his face into his palm. “Kono, if I die, tell Gracie that I love her.”
“You? I’m mortal,” Kono replies incredulously. “If I die, I will create a limbo universe of spirits just to haunt you, Williams.”
Steve comes trotting back on just two legs, but he looks happy as a puppy and he’s carrying...
“Whoa,” Kono says in awe. “Can I hold it?”
“Where?” Danny sputters. “Where was that? Where were you keeping a grenade launcher in our car? Why were you keeping it there?”
“It was under a false board in the trunk,” Steve says as he checks the specs and loads it up. “And because we might need it,” he continues calmly and logically. “Like right now.”
“We’re fighting a dragon!”
“And aren’t you glad I had a grenade launcher in the trunk?”
“I swear to god, Steven, when we get home...”
Danny doesn’t get the opportunity to finish his thought. Steve’s loaded up the grenade and with a heavy clunk, it’s ready for delivery. Danny steps forward and uses the sword to pierce at the dragon where he can, aiming to get him to rear up on his hind legs once more. It takes a good parry and thrust, a strong jab into the dragon’s shoulder area (because Kono’s not sure they have actual shoulders), but eventually it rises up, scaly neck extending and head pointed upwards.
“Take cover,” Steve warns and then he lets the grenade loose.
Kono sprints for cover behind a large rock nearby, grabbing hold of Jenna by the forearm to take her down with her as they slide in the volcanic rock and dirt, shielded from any of the shrapnel. Through the smoke, she can see Chin taking cover behind a wall. Danny’s covering Steve’s body with his own as best as he can, despite the height difference, with no other protection.
When the explosion dies down, Kono chances a peek out from behind the rock.
“A grenade launcher? Are you serious? Are you kidding me? When we get home, you’re giving me an itemized inventory of the weapons you have so I know where to find a catapult if I need one!”
“Well, you’d know how to use it, at least,” Steve replies with a smirk.
“That is no one’s business as to why!” he snaps, finger pointed in Steve’s face.
In tandem, they approach the clearing dust to see if a grenade can really take down a dragon. Kono waves a hand to clear the smoke, coughing when some of it manages to filter down into her lungs. The dragon’s not breathing anymore – although, they’re pretty magical creatures and she’s not sure that lack of a pulse means it’s down for the count, but it looks dead.
“Do we know for sure it’s dead?” Kono asks warily.
Steve and Danny exchange a look. Moments later, Danny’s sighing and pulling out his cell phone, muttering something about how he hates Steve.
“How do you do that?” Kono demands. “I need to know. Mostly so I can find the big red ‘off’ button that has to be there. It has to exist,” she says, watching as Danny paces back and forth, gesticulating wildly with his hands.
“...yes. No, Rachel, I’m aware...yes, I’m sure I’m not drunk, I’m staring at it right now. I don’t care if you killed the last one during summer festivities at Versailles, we found one and psycho-Steve...”
“Trust me,” Steve assures, constantly tracking each of Danny’s movements. “There’s no ‘off’ button.”
“...what are you talking about, Grace is exhibiting...No, Rachel. No, I am not taking her out to teach her the basics of sword-fighting when she’s eight. Even with Mattie, we waited until he was thirteen. Look, can you come down here and give us a time of death on a dragon or not?”
Kono’s pretty amused by the show. With a quick glance to her side, she sees she’s not the only one. The one-man-Danny show goes on for a little while longer until he hangs up and lets out a heavy sigh, as if he’s been suffering right up until this moment. Steve is the only one who dares to take a step forward and holds out his palm expectantly.
In another show of their kind-of-creepy telepathy, Danny wordlessly hands over the cell phone.
“Well?” Steve prompts.
“She’s on her way. She says that if she has to save my life again, I owe her a fancy dinner,” Danny grumbles. “Also, she says don’t go anywhere near the mouth. Even dead, dragons are apparently capable of some post-mortem fire-breathing.” He smiles tightly. “I love the supernatural world, I love it, I love it so much,” he says, as if constant repetition will convince him of the fact.
In the middle of his ranting, Steve has leaned in until they’re practically sharing the same breathing room. Kono should look away, but it’s like a train wreck – she just can’t.
“...I love it every time something unknown pops out of the shadows to eat me alive and...”
Danny’s rant is interrupted when Steve leans in and nips at Danny’s lower lip, sliding an arm around his midsection to haul him closer. It’s not the first possessive public display she’s seen from Steve and she doubts it will be the last.
Chin groans and Jenna is hiding her gaze (only peeking through a slit in her fingers). It looks like Kono’s the only one who’s actually sort of into this.
“Boss,” she reminds him with amusement. “Do we all have to stay? I mean, obviously one of us will stay to make sure you don’t throw Danny over a maybe-not-dead dragon for victory sex, but do we all have to be here for that?”
Kono spares a moment to give Danny a sympathetic look, but if the glazed look on his face is any indication, Danny doesn’t need a single thread of empathy from anyone and seems plenty happy to let Steve ravage him over some dragon-scales.
“Rachel will be here soon,” Steve says, standing at full attention while somehow still managing to keep a lazy arm slung around Danny. “You guys can go. Take the rest of the day. It’s not every day you slay a dragon and I definitely think that deserves some kind of reward. Don’t you agree, Danno?”
Danny’s response isn’t pretty. He manages to babble out a couple consonants, but that’s where it ends and he ends up gaping speechlessly at Steve in a strange mixture of desire and horror.
Lately, that’s become Danny’s usual expression.
“Danny,” Kono says, hooking her arm in Chin’s, ready to get the hell out of there before Steve changes his mind. “Stay strong, bro,” she instructs. “Don’t let him take your honor in front of something from the old ways.”
As she goes, she can hear Danny muttering ‘I love my team, I love my team’, but it doesn’t last for very long. Steve’s too busy shutting him up, after all. Kono makes it back to the parking lot before she shares a fond smile with Jenna and Chin.
“So, see you guys tomorrow? What are you thinking?” Kono asks as she leans her forearms on the roof of her car. “Unicorns?”
“Definitely,” Chin agrees.
“Oh, definitely,” is Jenna’s serious assertion. “I’ll pencil in unicorns for Tuesday.”
From behind them, Kono can hear Danny ranting about the sanctity of a dragon’s burial site and she thinks she catches something about ‘bond-divorce’.
It’s just a typical Monday with Five-0, and she wouldn’t change that for the world.