|Nowhere To Turn
Author: Traw PM
Sometimes our best intentions are the worse things we can offer. Steve McGarrett discovers this after the youngest member of his team is brutally attacked in his own apartment. Steve tries to help Danny deal with the attack but will his best intentions drive the traumatized young man away? Please be aware- This story deals with male rape.Rated: Fiction T - English - Angst/Hurt/Comfort - Danny W. & Steve M. - Words: 35,377 - Reviews: 3 - Favs: 2 - Follows: 1 - Published: 10-20-12 - Status: Complete - id: 8628040
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Please be aware- This story deals with male rape.
If you find this topic disturbing PLEASE DO NOT READ ANY FURTHER! While the actual rape scene is not graphic, some readers may find it highly disturbing. Rape is NEVER okay but unfortunately it does happen. This story deals with the aftermath of such a traumatic event and the effect it had on one of our favorite detectives.
Entering the bedroom he crossed soundlessly to the side of the bed before silently placing the handcuffs that he was carrying on the bedside table. He then quietly set down a small brown briefcase beside the keys carefully adjusting it several times until he seemed satisfied with its positioning. He turned back towards the bed and stood looking at the sleeping man as he licked his lips in excitement, feeling himself harden in anticipation.
He had seen the young detective numerous times in the newspapers and on the television but in real life the sleeping man looked more innocent and younger, too young to be the Second In Command of McGarrett's elite police unit - Hawaii Five O. Grinning he imagined what McGarrett's reaction would be to what he was about to do to his golden boy.
Savoring the moment, he watched Williams' deep regular breathing, staring in the moonlight at the full lips he would soon be tasting. He froze when Williams murmured in his sleep and rolled over onto his stomach, the light sheet that covered him slipping off exposing the young man's naked body to his hungry stare.
He tried to slow his breathing as he quickly stripped out of his clothes and picked up the handcuffs that he had placed on the bedside table when he had first entered the bedroom. Leaning over the sleeping man he lightly brushed his hand across the sandy curls before grabbing Williams' right arm that was lying beside his head, snapping the handcuff tightly around the wrist before yanking the arm violently down behind his victim's back as he grabbed the other wrist and swiftly cuffed it tightly.
The snapping of the handcuffs around his wrist snapped Danny into an instant state of consciousness. Crying out in surprise and pain as his arm was jerked behind his back, he began to struggle wildly as he felt his other arm grabbed and violently pulled behind him before it was snapped by the too tight metal of the handcuffs.
Fighting to free himself, Danny felt his lower back explode in a sea of agony as a fist slammed into his kidney, robbing him of his breath as his world momentarily blackened around him. He was vaguely aware of being turned over onto his back, trapping his arms painfully behind him as he felt hands run roughly over his body, touching him, rubbing him. He swallowed back the nausea that rose in his throat at the intimate contact and he tried to pull away as he stared up at the dark silhouette of the man that loomed above him. "Take your hands off me! Don't touch me!"
Dan's demands were answered by a hard punch into the stomach and he curled up in pain as he felt his attacker grab his hair and jerk his head up. "You're mine, Williams! You can relax and have fun or you can fight me but either way you are mine!" A voice breathed hotly into his ear and he was rolled back onto his back. He continued to struggle as the man leaning above him climbed onto the bed and forced himself between his legs, the man's weight pinning him to the bed as his screams of agony were muffled by the rough mouth that claimed his and he tried to slip into the protective darkness that offered him his only escape as his attacker used his body but even that small mercy was denied to him as each thrust sent a new wave of agony through his body and soul.
Pulling free of his young victim's body, he rose from the bed and turned the trembling man over, releasing Danny from the handcuffs before rolling him back onto his back. He stood a moment, staring down at his handy work before he leaned closer and gently caressed Williams' expressionless face as he whispered, "Tell McGarrett that this is his fault, that the next time he tries to fool with me will be the last time he sees you alive!"
He reached down and pulled up the sheet dropping it over the young detective before he turned and collected his clothes and the small briefcase that he had set on the bedside table and disappeared from the room.
Danny closed his eyes and rolled onto his side, whimpering in pain as he drew his arms tightly to his chest and curled up into a tight ball. He felt cold and numb, barely aware of the violent tremors that rocked his body as he tried to escape into the blessed darkness that had eluded him earlier.
Leaving the silent apartment, the attacker glanced around, reassuring himself that nobody had seen him as he slipped into the stairwell and made his way back to the street. He hesitated at the garage entrance as he noticed the dark haired man dressed in shorts and a sweatshirt glancing impatiently at his watch. Smiling, he watched McGarrett shake his head in obvious annoyance at his Second In Command's failure to appear before continuing his jog alone.
Shouldering into his jacket, Steve McGarrett held the phone close to his ear listening to the unanswered rings. "Come on Danno, pick up, Aikane. I know you are there. Pick up!" He murmured. The uneasy feeling that something was seriously wrong with his young detective and closest friend that had plagued him during his jog now rose to a new level as he listened to the tinny rings at the other end of the line. Slamming down the phone, the dark haired detective snatched up his keys and hurried out of his apartment, the urge to ensure all was well with Danno was almost overwhelming.
Shaking his head as his knocks went unanswered, Steve pulled his keys from his jacket and quickly located the key he wanted. Sliding it into the lock he turned it and opened the door to his best friend's apartment. He called out Danny's name as he entered the apartment but again his behest went unanswered as he began to slowly move through the silent apartment, his hand resting on the handle of his weapon as he called again, "Danno!"
The sound of someone quietly moaning caught his attention and he moved swiftly towards the partially open door to Danny's bedroom and gently pushed it open. Danny lay curled up on his side facing the door, his thick curls were the only thing visible above the thin sheet that covered him. "Danno?"
Another soft moan was his only answer and he hurried across to the edge of the bed, his heart beating wildly within his chest as he carefully grabbed the sheet and pulled it back. "Danno?"
Danny cried out in fear and rolled away from the touch, moving to the far side of the bed. As the sheet moved with his friend's body, McGarrett stared at what was left in its place. No! It couldn't be... but as a cop he'd seen the awful stain too many times. Had even got to the point where he could smell it as he entered the room. Blood! He stared at where the sheet was stained and then glanced heart brokenly at his friend. "Oh God Danno, tell me I'm wrong."
There was no answer from the obviously scared man who was still huddled on the other side of the bed. Steve wanted to reach for him, to lay a hand on his arm and draw him back close to his own body but if his suspicions were correct, human contact would be the last thing his friend would want. "Who was in here Danno? Who did this to you?" he whispered softly, staring at the trembling man as his own emotions threatened to choke him but he fought them down, fought for control and won.
Forcing himself to act as a cop and not as a friend, Steve quietly walked around to the other side of the bed and knelt down, resisting the urge to place his hand on Danny's shaking shoulder. Danny's eyes were open but he stared sightlessly ahead. "Danno, it's Steve! Can you hear me, Danno?" He gently placed his hand on Danny's shoulder in an attempt to get the younger man to respond.
Danny jumped at the contact and pulled away. "Don't touch me!" he whispered through chattering teeth as he pulled back from the comforting touch.
"Easy Danno, easy. It's me Aikane, Steve! I'm going to get you to the hospital. Get Doc to have a look at you." Steve said quietly as he lifted up the sheet and gently covered Danny fully, trying not to physically react to the dark bruising that marred Danny's body.
"NO! No hospital!" Danny pleaded desperately, "Just leave me alone. I'll be okay!"
"Danno, you know that I can't do that, Aikane. You need to be checked out and any injuries treated." Steve admonished firmly, "You know that it is standard procedure in cases like this!"
"Please Steve," Danno whispered his voice teary as he shivered under the light covering, "I don't want to go to the hospital! Please don't make me go!"
Steve's chest ached as he felt his own heart break a little more at Danny's terrified pleas. He knew it would be difficult to stop the media from getting the details of Danny's hospital admission and as he studied the trembling man on the bed he knew that Danny would be unable to cope with the resulting media frenzy. Drawing a deep breath, he whispered, "Okay Danno, no hospital for the moment but I will get Doc to look at you."
Danny gave a small reluctant nod and closed his eyes as he swallowed down a sob. He didn't really want anyone knowing, not even Doc but he knew Steve would not back down any further.
He could smell the blood and sickly odor of sweat and semen, his skin felt sticky and he felt dirty inside and out, he could even still feel his attacker, the rough hands pawing and touching. The smell was suddenly overpowering and he knew he was going to be sick.
He swallowed hard, trying to force the bile from rising into the back of his throat and bit back a moan as he tried to ignore the pain that seemed to spear through all parts of his body as he moved and attempted to sit up. God, he needed a shower, he needed desperately to get clean. He couldn't understand how Steve was managing to keep from vomiting when his own stomach was threatening to repel. With a sudden urgency, he struggled up and tried to get off the bed but Steve's hands held him down and he struggled to get free.
The wild and terrified look that suddenly haunted Danny's face and eyes caused Steve to react instinctively and he tried to calm the younger man down, "Easy Danno, easy."
"No...sick." Danny gasped as he fought against McGarrett's restraining hands.
McGarrett swiftly but carefully pulled Danny to his feet and supported the young man to the bathroom, reassuring him and holding his head as Danny dry retched into the toilet and violent spasms caused Danny to moan in pain. He continued to kneel next to Danny until he was certain the nausea had passed and gently lifted him to his feet. "Come on Danno, how about we get you dressed and then I will take you back to my apartment and get Doc to come and check you over." he said quietly.
Danny shook his head. "No, I need a shower, I have to get clean!" He murmured, pulling out of Steve's firm hold and unsteadily stepping towards the shower.
"I'm sorry Danno, but you can't have a shower until after Doc examines you. We need to collect evidence from your body." Steve reminded him softly, hating the words as they came out of his mouth, as he reached for Dan to guide him back into the bedroom. "I promise you Aikane that as soon as Doc says so you can have a long hot shower."
"Please, you don't understand, I need to get rid of this filth. I can't stand it any longer! I feel...God...I feel...How can you stand to touch me?" Danny shouted, pulling free of his touch. His voice dropped to a whisper as the tears slid down his face, "Please Steve, I just want to take a shower and then go back to sleep. You really don't have to stay."
"Danno, I promise you that when we get back to my apartment and Doc checks you over you can have a long hot shower and sleep as long as you want to." Steve stated firmly as he wrapped the sheet back around Dan's shoulders, covering the young man as he led him into the living room and helped him settle onto the sofa, worried by Danny's sudden compliance.
He quickly returned to the bedroom and deliberately avoided looking at the bloodied bed as he opened the closet and removed a pair of sweatpants and a light shirt before returning to the now silent man who sat staring sightlessly at the wall. "I'll help you dress, Danno." He said quietly as he reached for Danny's arm.
"Leave me alone. I can do it!" Danny snapped, snatching the clothes from Steve's hands before edging away from him on the sofa.
Biting his lip, Steve forced himself not to react from his friend's angry withdrawal from his touch, reminding himself that Danny was displaying all the normal reactions of a rape victim. He forced his expression and body language to remain neutral as he heard the soft moans of pain as Danny struggled into his clothes.
The world spun wildly around him as he stood and Danny was not certain if he was going to be able to stop the sudden nausea that rose in his throat. Every movement caused his body to scream out in agony and he wished that he could just lie down and escape into the darkness that flittered at the edges of his consciousness.
Steve watched as Danny's face paled several shades whiter as he rose unsteadily to his feet. He was uncertain of what was keeping his friend going but he knew Dan was on the verge of collapse. He was reconsidering ignoring Danny's plea of no hospital and calling an ambulance when Danny headed towards the apartment door. "Well if I can't shower here, I guess I have no choice but to go to your apartment" Danny whispered angrily as he opened the door.
"I don't want to be examined!" Danny's terrified plea surprised Steve as the young man backed away from both Doc and himself as the tears began to fall. "Please! I'm okay. I don't need to be checked out."
"Danno, you're not okay, Aikane." Steve began quietly as he stepped towards the distraught young man unsure of what had caused the sudden refusal to be examined by the Coroner/ Official Physician to the Five O team.
"Steve, please…don't make me do this…" Danny continued to beg as he continued to move away. "Doc, I'm fine. Please, there's no need…."
Danny's sudden terror and reluctance to be examined told Bergman more than McGarrett's urgent call about Danny being assaulted had and suddenly the doctor understood why Steve wanted him to examine Danny here and not in Queens Hospital. The haunted look on the young detective's pale face, the way he moved and the fear he was showing about the examination warned Doc about the type of assault that he was dealing with. Placing a hand on McGarrett's shoulder to stop the lead detective from stepping closer, Doc spoke softly, "I know you don't want to be examined Danny but you could have some serious injuries" Stepping around the lead detective, Doc walked slowly to where Danny watched him warily and gently took hold of Dan's arm, ignoring Danny's flinch at the contact as he began to lead the traumatized young man towards the bedroom, "Lets get the examination done and then you can have a shower." He murmured softly as he maneuvered Danny into the bedroom and closed the door firmly behind them.
McGarrett stood staring at the closed bedroom door for several seconds as unshed tears threatened to fall. Wiping a shaky hand over his face, he drew deep breath in an effort to keep control over his chaotic emotions as he turned and walked over to the phone He picked up the receiver and with a quick glance towards the door to ensure that it still closed, began to dial the familiar number to the office. He only had to wait until the second ring before. He jumped in surprise as the phone was answered almost immediately and he heard Chin answer, "Hawaii Five O, Detective Kelly."
Quickly he explained what had happened, reassuring his detective that Dan was safe and currently being examined by Doc before he softly ordered, Chin, I want you and Che to get over to Danno's apartment, search it with a fine tooth comb and then interview the neighbors, find out if any of them saw or heard anything this morning. Get Kono to check Danny's files, both Five O and HPD, see if he has received any threats or if there is someone wanting revenge."
"We make a lot of enemies in this job Boss both as a HPD cop and Five O." He heard Chin answered sadly, "We'll get on it straight away."
"Mahalo Chin, " Steve answered as he heard movement from the bedroom, "And Chin, make sure that this stays strictly with Five O for the moment, no leaks to HPD or anyone about what's happened. I don't want this leaking accidentally to the press until I have talked to Danny."
"Okay Steve, "Chin agreed before asking quietly, "What about the D.A.?"
"I'll talk to Walter later after I have taken Danno's statement but until then…" Steve hesitated, glancing again towards the bedroom before he lowered his voice, "Until then I will be here if you find something. I don't want Danny to be left on his own. Find something for me Chin, anything that will nail the scum that did this!" McGarrett growled softly, his hand tightening painfully around the phone as he heard the Chinese detective acknowledge the order.
Hanging up the phone, Steve turned around as the bedroom door opened and he watched silently as Doc emerged from the room. He waited until the doctor joined him accepting the bundle of clothing that Danny had worn for the drive from his apartment, "Well" he asked anxiously, "how is he?"
Struggling to maintain his professional facade, Doc cleared his throat and stared at the wall for a moment before he looked back at McGarrett. "He was raped." Doc began, his voice faltering slightly as his control slipped. He shook his head and swallowed hard before he began again, "He initially didn't want to be examined but I managed to get him to agree to be checked thoroughly out. The examination showed that he had been raped. I ran a rape test and will drop the swaps of to Che. Danny was able to tell me that it was only one attacker who handcuffed him and beat him as well." Seeing the look of devastation in McGarrett's eyes Doc again looked over the Five O lead detective's shoulder as he continued his report. "He's sustained some anal tears that should heal without surgical intervention, I will give you a script for antibiotics to try and prevent any infections. He also sustained a hit to the left kidney that I am concerned may have caused severe bruising but he is refusing to go to the hospital to be x-rayed so all we can do is watch him carefully for any complications from the injury."
"What type of complications?" Steve asked anxiously,
"It's possible that the blow may have caused the kidney to bleed. We will need to be aware of the possibility if the pain becomes severe." Doc answered softly, "But I will monitor him closely for the next couple of days. His wrists are rubbed raw from the handcuffs. He's taking a shower at the moment so I will dress and bandage them both when he gets out. I gave him some of your clothes to get dressed into after he finishes. I knew that you would want the clothes he was wearing to check for evidence." Doc paused again as he looked McGarrett in the eyes as he continued slowly, "Danny is extremely traumatized Steve, he is going to need a lot of help and support to recover from what has happened."
"He'll get it Doc," Steve answered instantly, "I intend to help him through this."
Doc shook his head before he took a deep breath and continued, "He's going to need professional help Steve, he is going to need some counseling sessions with some one like Dr. Bishop."
McGarrett fell silent as the words sunk in and he turned towards the open bedroom door, hearing the sounds of running shower from the ensuite. Any objections that came into his mind were forgotten as he heard another sound- the heartbreaking sounds of Danny softly sobbing. He swallowed hard as he nodded his reluctant agreement as he placed the bundle of clothes down on the sofa and headed towards the bathroom, "Can you make the arrangements?" he asked quietly over his shoulder.
"I can't quite believe that this has happened." Che shook his head as he glanced up from carefully bagging the bloodied sheets from the bed. "I'm not sure how I would deal with it if it happened to me. I mean…" His voice trailed off as he finished placing the stained evidence in the bag.
"I know what you mean Bruddah," Chin answered softly as he continued to study the room looking for more signs of a disturbance.
"Did Steve say how Danny is?" Che asked quietly as he placed the plastic evidence bag onto the ground next to his open forensic case and reached for the fingerprinting powder.
"All he said was that he has taken Danny back to his place and Doc was examining him now." Chin shook his head sadly, "Danny's going to need all our support and understanding to recover from this. I can't even start to imagine what he must be going through."
Che hesitated, the fingerprinting brush poised above the small bedside table as he looked up at the Five O detective, "Do you think Danny is going to press charges? I mean…well with all the publicity that a case like this is going to cause… umm…if it was me…" The small oriental forensic expert blushed and looked away, embarrassed at his unspoken admission.
"I'm not sure if Steve will give him the option. The Boss really wants to get who ever did this, not that I can blame him, I would love to get five minutes alone in a room with this scum myself …but I hope Steve doesn't try to pressurize Danny into making that choice. It has to be Danny's decision not Steve's." Chin answered as he scribbled a couple of observations he had made of the room into his notebook, "To be truthful Bruddah, I'm not sure if it happened to me that I would want the world knowing."
"Me either!" Che admitted as he returned his attention back to collecting the fingerprint, unconsciously touching the wooden table superstitiously in an attempt to ward off something like this ever happening to him.
Closing another file, Kono stared sightlessly at the wall, chewing on his pencil. His thoughts were with the young man in McGarrett's apartment and what he had been forced to endure. Slapping down the pencil onto his desk, the large Hawaiian detective growled in a combination of horror and rage. No one deserved what had happened to his kaikaina! NO ONE! The growl escaped his throat again and echoed around the small cubicle- if he ever got his hands on the sicko responsible…
Grabbing another file, he savagely flicked it open and began to scan through the contents looking for any threat that would make the criminal a suspect. So far the pile of files that held potential suspects was growing at an almost alarming rate. The suspects they arrested and brought to justice never thanked HPD or Five O detectives politely, instead the arresting officers were usually subjected to yelled threats of revenge. He shook his head as he closed the file and added it to the growing pile, all of the threats Danny had received were the usual threats of violence and none of the suspects showed the deviant sexual sadistic behavior of Danny's attacker but Kono knew that didn't mean much. Prison had a way of changing men and not always for the better.
Sitting on the chair opposite the sofa where Danny was now seated, Steve watched as Danno tried to hold the half filled mug of hot coffee still. The way Danny's shaking hands were tightly wrapped around the mug would have normally have suggested that the young detective was cold and was trying to warm his hands with the heat the mug but McGarrett knew the tremors were not caused by any cool temperature that was in the room but rather the evil iciness that had permeated his soul.
It had taken both Doc and himself several minutes to calm the devastated young man in the shower and to help him dress. Danno had finally calmed down enough to have his damaged wrists bandaged and be interviewed about what had happened. It was not an interview that Steve wanted to do but one he knew was an evil necessity to move the case further and to catch the animal responsible.
He waited until Danny took another small sip of coffee before he began, "I know this is hard Aikane but I need you to tell me everything that happened this morning."
Danny paled and nodded, aware that he had little choice. As much as he just wanted to forget he knew his Boss and closest friend wasn't going to just let this drop and pretend it didn't happen. He swallowed hard and looked past McGarrett and out of the open lanai doors at the brilliant blue sky beyond. He didn't dare to look his mentor in the eye as he recounted what happened, he didn't want to see the looks of disappointment and disgust when he would have to admit that he had not fought hard enough to stop the attack
"I…I was asleep," he began almost in a soft whisper, "When I was woken by someone grabbing my arm and handcuffing my wrist." He faltered and blinked hard as the memory threatened to overwhelm him as he forced himself to continue. "I tried to fight…but I guess I didn't try hard enough…" he admitted, not daring to even look at the other two men in the room.
"You fought hard Danny, the injuries to your wrists from the handcuffs are more than enough evidence to confirm that." Doc quietly interrupted.
The young detective shrugged in disbelief as he continued. "He managed to handcuff both my hands and then punched me in the back, I guess to stop me struggling long enough so he could turn me over." Danny closed his eyes as the tears began to fall and he struggled to speak through his tightening throat, "It was dark and all I could see was a dark shape but I felt his hands touching me, I …I told him to get his hands off me, tried to get away but he …he didn't… he…he climbed on the bed…climbed on top of me…and he…" Danny's voice trailed away as the tears began to fall harder. Drawing a deep breath he forced himself to continue with the report, "After…after he had… finished… he left. "
His young friend's account of the attack was hard to listen to and Steve silently curled his hands into fist held tightly at his sides in an attempt to remain in control as he softly asked, "Can you describe him at all Danno?"
The young detective shook his head, not wanting to remember, "It...It was dark… I just…I just saw the shape." He hedged hoping Steve wouldn't push him to remember any more details.
McGarrett frowned at his friend's apparent lack of memory of what his attacker looked like and with a quick glance at Doc, pushed a little harder. "Think Danno, even if it was dark you must have an idea to how large he was? Did he speak maybe?"
"He was big, maybe six foot, solidly built maybe one hundred and eighty pounds," Danny shrugged, 'Tell McGarrett that this is his fault.' Refusing to look his closest friend in the eyes, he mumbled, "He didn't say a word."
Danny shifted uncomfortably on the sofa as Steve's living room began to fill with people. Even though it was just Kono, Chin and Che who had joined himself, Steve and Doc, the large group made Danny feel unusually claustrophobic. He shifted uncomfortably again; acutely aware that they all knew his shame and he feared to look any of them in the face, afraid to see the disgust and pity he knew would be written there. He swallowed hard as he stared down at his hands as he listened to his friends discuss what little evidence they had recovered from his attack…. from HIM…
"The blood on the sheets was A Positive, Danny's blood type," Che began, glancing sympathetically at the uncomfortable young detective sitting with them as he continued, "But the blood group of the semen collected from the sheets and from Danny's rape kit," Che's heart broke a little as he saw Danny flinch and he glanced uncomfortably towards Chin and Kono as he continued a little softer, "was O Negative. Doc also removed several hairs both pubic and head from Danny's body during his examination. They are consistent with someone of Hawaiian descent. There was also several smudged palm and fingerprints in Danny's bedroom but unfortunately none that I could use. No obvious signs of a break in either." Che's voice trailed off as he noticed Danny's rising discomfort.
"So he possibly had a key?" Steve asked. At Che's silent nod, McGarrett turned his attention towards his two standing detectives, "What about the neighbors? Did anyone see or hear anything?"
"Too early in the morning Boss," Chin began hesitantly as he watched Danny's distress at the discussion rise, "Most people were asleep and heard and saw nothing, although I have one witness who lives one floor below Danny who noticed a stranger lurking in the parking garage at about 6.30 this morning. The description isn't great, Hawaiian, about 6 ft. maybe180 pounds. The witness said he noticed the guy seemed to be watching something out in the street but he doesn't know what. He just thought it was some drunken kanaka hiding from someone and took no more notice."
McGarrett shook his head in disgust as he turned back to his youngest detective and the victim. "Does that description sound familiar, Danno? Could the guy standing in the garage be the man who attacked you?"
Danny jumped at the question and glanced up in humiliation and embarrassment. "I…I don't know," He murmured, looking away from the faces that were watching him closely, "I…I told you Steve…it was dark…"
"I know it was dark and that you were woken out of a deep sleep Aikane," Steve sighed, unable to curb his desperation for Danny to remember more, "But we need you to remember! If we are going to catch this animal, we need to investigate…"
"Stop it! I don't want you to investigate it!" Danny yelled as he suddenly rose and backed towards the door, "Don't you get it Steve? You are the one who wants justice, not me! I just want to forget it ever happened! I just want you to leave me alone!"
"But Danno, we can't let him get away with this."
Danny could feel his insides turning to dust, his anger turning to pleas. "Don't you understand, Steve? If I have to testify EVERYONE will know...everyone. Would you do that to me just to get your revenge on this guy?"
"Danno, that's not…"
"That's what not? That's not true? It is! God Steve, please just do what I ask and just leave it alone. Please just leave me alone!"
Steve watched shocked as Danny turned and fled out of the door. The four other men watched helplessly as the door slammed closed behind the upset young man. The shock was quickly replaced with guilt at Danny's words and Steve stepped forward to follow and try to explain but before he could take two steps towards the door, Doc grabbed his arm and stopped his egress, "Leave him Steve, let him go! He needs just to have some time to himself!"
McGarrett nodded and he turned back towards the other men in the room, even more determined to get his kaikaina some justice, "Okay Gentlemen, what else do we have to put this scum away forever?"
Danny shoved through the door to the stairwell and leaned against the wall as the door closed behind him. He closed his eyes as the tears burned his cheeks and tried to concentrate on the coolness of the wall as it soaked into his shirt. "Please, Steve. Please just leave it alone."
He stood in the shadows watching as the young detective rushed out of the apartment building and almost ran down the street. He shook his head at the predictability of McGarrett and the way the detective protectively ushered the younger man to his apartment after he had discovered the rape. He chuckled softly, wishing he had seen McGarrett's face when he had discovered his protégé naked and abused.
He stepped out to follow the fleeing man but quickly stepped back into the protection of the doorway when he saw a van pull up beside Williams. He growled as Williams spoke to the occupants for a few minutes before climbing inside and the van drove away.
"It's okay, he'll be back. There's no way McGarrett is going to let him stay anywhere else but under his wing." He grinned and nodded in self-satisfaction as he settled back into the shadows to wait and watch.
Frowning as he listened to the other man's report, Walter Stuart shook his head at the distinct lack of evidence collected so far. He had felt physically ill and horrified when he had first been contacted about Williams' rape earlier in the day and wasn't surprised at the extremely obvious reluctance of Williams to have the case investigated. He knew that without either solid evidence or Williams' co-operation they could not even hope to make a case and by the sound of McGarrett's report Danny was not willing to even press charges. No Victim- No crime- No matter for him as the DA to prosecute unless he subpoenaed Williams to testify - if they ever managed to get this case as far as court.
He waited for the lead detective of Hawaii Five O to finish before he leaned back in his chair and crossed his arms. "I'm sorry about what happened to young Williams Steve, we might not always see eye to eye but he didn't deserve what happened to him this morning, " He began, "But unless Williams is willing to allow an investigation and press charges, to be honest, there is not a lot that I can do."
"Walter, he's upset at the moment and in shock but I promise that after he calms down and I talk to him, he'll agree that this scum should be punished for what he did." Steve argued.
Stuart sighed, "Face it Steve, do you really think that Williams is going to be willing to get up in court and admit to being raped? Just imagine the media frenzy that the case would generate. His life would never be the same again and it could very mean the end of his career as well. Maybe Williams is right when he said he just wants to put this behind him and move on."
"Damn it Walter! Don't you care that one of your own men was sexually assaulted in his own apartment this morning?" McGarrett shouted, incensed that Stuart did not seem to even be interested in getting Danno some justice. "Or is the problem that it WAS Danno that was assaulted? I am very aware of just how you treat him."
"Now just hang on Steve!" Stuart exploded, rising to his feet, as his face reddened with anger, "This has nothing to do with how I feel or don't feel about Danny, this has everything to do with what Danny wants as the victim! And from the few details that you have already told me, Danny DOESN'T want to proceed with the matter any further! It's his choice as the victim here and unless he makes that choice with his own free will than I will not proceed with this case any further."
Rising to his own feet, McGarrett glared at the District Attorney, "He will Walter, that I can promise you, once I talk to him and help him see that this scum needs to be held accountable."
"You have to find him first Steve," Stuart growled angrily, "Doesn't that tell you something? Well if it doesn't tell you anything, it does tell me a lot. It tells me that Danny isn't ready or doesn't want to deal with this yet! And unlike you, I can understand and sympathize with how he is feeling."
"I do understand what Danno is feeling and I also know once the shock of what happened wears off, he is going to agree with me and want to carry this through!" McGarrett hissed through clenched teeth, his hands held in tight fists rigidly at his side. "At the moment he is hurting, confused and doesn't realize what he is saying! I know that once he calms down he'll want justice that he will want to catch this scum just as much as I do and I intend to everything I can to ensure that happens!"
Taking a deep breath to calm his own volatile temper, Stuart lowered his voice and asked, "Steve is it really Danny you are doing this for or yourself? Think about it before you try and push Danny into doing something he may not want!"
"Just be ready to prosecute this animal, Walter!" McGarrett growled, "Because I know Danny will want him charged and I intend to make sure the charges stick!"
Stuart sighed as he watched McGarrett turn and storm out of his office. "I hope you're right Steve but I also hope that it's Danny's choice and not yours!" he muttered barely jumping as McGarrett slammed his office door.
Standing beside the car, McGarrett watched the lone figure sitting on the edge of the cliff staring out towards the darkening horizon. It hadn't taken the lead detective long to find his missing friend; he knew that Danny would be drawn to the ocean he loved when he needed to think. It had then just been a matter of driving around the island and checking out the secluded inlets and deserted beaches and ocean lookouts to find where his upset friend had gone.
Uncertain if his presence would be welcomed or even tolerated by the young man who had become so alienated from him in the last few hours, Steve quietly approached, "Danno?"
Danny remained motionless and silent, never reacting to or acknowledging the soft voice behind him. He seemed lost in his own world, withdrawn from the world that surrounded him physically.
Steve hesitated a moment, uncertain if he should intrude but needing to make sure that Danny was all right. The need became too great and sitting down beside him, Steve carefully placed his arm around the shaking shoulder and drew Danny into a light hug. With a trembling hand he reached across and gently grabbed Danny's chin and gently turned his face towards him. His breath caught in his chest as he found himself looking into the tear filled blue eyes of his kaikaina that stared back at him in such pain.
Danny's initial reaction was to pull away, not wishing to show any more weakness than he already had, but that was overridden by the part of him that desperately needed comfort, and the gentle touch of the person he trusted most in this world reached clear through to his agonized and bleeding soul
"Please Danno, I'm sorry if you think I am pushing you. I only want what is best for you. Please Aikane, just talk to me," Steve pleaded, "Please don't shut me out."
The tears that filled the younger man's eyes spilled over as he drew a shuddering breath and whispered, "I keep wondering if I did something that may have… maybe I said something…" Dan's voice trailed off as he turned back and began to stare out at the horizon again, "Maybe I even asked for it!" He whispered tearfully.
The whisper was silenced as Steve gently placed his hand back onto his chin and firmly forced him to face him again. "Danno you did nothing that encouraged this animal last night. I don't want you to ever think that you did!" Encouraged when Danny didn't pull away, Steve continued, " I promise we are going to catch this scum, Aikane and put him away so he can never hurt you again.
Suddenly Danny pulled away from McGarrett's comforting hug, staring wide-eyed at his friend as he slowly and unsteadily rose to his feet, stumbling as he began to back away." Steve…I…I'm sorry…I can't…"
Jumping to his own feet, Steve reached for Dan; fearful of how close to the cliff edge that he was backing unknowingly towards. Grabbing Danny's arms to halt his fearful retreat, Steve whispered, "It's going to be okay Danno, everything is going to be okay."
Danny continued to stumble backwards, his fear and terror evident in his blue eyes as he broke free of Steve's light hold, " No, it won't be…everyone will know…"
Dan's foot hit the loss stones at the cliff's edge and he lost his balance. Steve lunged instinctively and caught his arm, pulling Danny towards him. He braced himself as Danny's body slammed into his, staggering back a few steps as he struggled to maintain their balance as his arms wrapped protectively around the younger man tightly. He could feel Danny shiver in his arms as he pulled Danny even closer and tried to stop his own fear filled tremors.
Pressing Danny's head closer to his chest, he rested his head upon the top of the sandy curls as he began to whisper soft words of reassurances. "Are you alright?" he finally whispered to the silent man in his arms as he rubbed Dan's back soothingly, in an effort to calm the tremors that still coursed through his body. Receiving no response, he drew slightly away and softly ordered, "Dan, look at me!" Dan's pale face slowly looked up at him and Steve's breath caught in his throat. The need to protect this man from any more pain was almost overwhelming and he swallowed hard. "Everything IS going to be okay Danno, I promise."
Danny nodded numbly and pulled out of Steve's grasp, turning back towards the sea and the dark storm clouds that now were rolling quickly towards the land.
Errant drops of rain began to fall as lightening briefly lit the sky. Steve tried to catch a momentarily glance of Danny as the dark sky was lit but could read little into the expression on Danno's face. Uncertain whether to ask again if Dan was all right, he looked around for Dan's car, realizing that he had not noticed it when he had arrived. Unable to see it parked nearby he quietly asked Dan how he got to the isolated spot.
"I caught a lift up with some surfers." Danny looked around as if searching for them in the dark and the rain before adding softly, "But I guess they left."
Steve smiled uncertainly, not liking his friend's reactions; "It's starting to rain Danno, why don't you come back to Honolulu with me. We can go back to my place, get dry and warm, Chin grabbed you some clothes from your apartment, and then afterwards we can order something to eat and have it delivered."
Biting his lip in indecision, Dan sighed and reluctantly agreed. He knew he needed a lift back to Honolulu and he wasn't totally certain that at the moment he really wanted to be alone. He glanced at his boss as the words of his attacker echoed again through his mind 'Tell McGarrett that this is his fault,' .He wasn't certain that he wanted to be with Steve either but was unable to come up with an excuse not to accept the ride or the dinner invitation. The last thing he wanted to do was hurt Steve's feelings by declining without a good reason to do so. Slowly he followed Steve to the car and climbed into the passenger side.
The ride back to Honolulu was silent and Steve stole several quick glances across at his passenger. The younger man again seemed lost in a world of his own as he stared out of the window and Steve silently vowed to catch the sicko that had taken the life spark that was Danno away.
"Get your hands off me! Don't touch me!" Danny's tormented cries echoed through the silent apartment, startling McGarrett out of a deep sleep. "Just leave me alone!" The softer plea tore at his heart as he threw back the covers of his bed and jumped out of bed, hurrying to the guest room where his young friend was sleeping. Pushing open the partially closed door, Steve crossed to the bed and reached for the restless man as Danny struggled against the sheets that entangled him; again crying out, "Don't touch me!"
"Easy, Danno, easy! You're safe Aikane," Steve whispered as he gently grabbed Dan's shoulders to stop his frantic struggling.
The sensation of being touched woke Danny instantly and he cried out in fright as he tried to pull away "Easy, Aikane, easy. It's just me, Steve. You're safe!"
Danny blinked in confusion as he opened his eyes and focused on the worried face above him as the memory of his dream returned. Embarrassed that he must have woken Steve with his nightmare, he tried to slow his racing heart as he tried to untangle himself from the sheet that was wrapped tightly around him "Sorry!" he muttered unable to look his friend in the face as he sat up in the bed and rubbed a hand across his face to hide the red flush that rose in his cheeks. "I didn't mean to wake you."
"Ain't no big thing, Bruddah," Steve smiled reassuringly as he lightly squeezed the younger man's shoulder, "It was time for me to get up and get ready for work anyway." Studying the exhausted face of his friend, he asked quietly, "You ok?"
"Yeah, I'm fine, just a bad dream." Danny smiled weakly as he tossed the sheet aside and started to climb out of bed, stifling a groan as his sore body protested at the movement.
"Whoa, where are you going?' McGarrett asked as he tried to gently push Danny back onto the bed.
"I gotta get ready to go to the office." The younger man frowned as he brushed McGarrett's restraining hands away; "Chin and I were supposed to double check the witnesses' statements from the Brinson stabbing yesterday."
"Chin and Kono can deal with that, I want you to stay here and rest. " Steve ordered, "I know that you didn't sleep well last night." Danny blushed and dropped his head at the correct observation as McGarrett softly continued. "Anyway Doc has set up an appointment for you to talk to Dr. Bishop about what happened. She's expecting to see you in her office at 10 am."
Danny's head snapped up at the news about the appointment with psychiatrist. "I don't need to talk to a shrink!" he protested angrily, pushing himself up and out of bed. "I'm fine! All I need is to get back to work and put all this behind me!"
"Danno, you're not fine!" Steve objected hotly grabbing the younger man's arm and spinning him around to face him. Softening his voice, he gently squeezed the younger man's arms as he continued, "You can't just pretend this didn't happen. You need to talk to someone about it and Dr. Bishop is the one who is best equipped to help you deal with it."
"Why can't you just listen to me for just a change Steve," Danny yelled pulling out of McGarrett's hold, "I told you yesterday that I just want to put this behind me! I don't want to DEAL with it nor do I want it investigated! As for talking about it with a shrink - there's NO way…"
"You have no choice about talking to Bishop, Danno." Steve interrupted, his heart breaking at the ultimatum he was about to give. "Doc and I have already agreed you are not to return to duty until AFTER you have spoken to Bishop and she clears you."
Danny's eyes opened wide in disbelief and he stared at McGarrett for a minute before he managed to whisper, "So you're putting me on the beach?"
"I'm only trying to do what's best for you, Aikane," McGarrett answered softly reaching again for the younger man, "You need to talk about what has happened. Just listen to your self Danno, you are wanting to pretend that animal didn't…" his voice faltered and he looked away, swallowing hard to regain his own swirling emotions before he returned his attention back to his upset young friend and continued, "You aren't even willing to bring this scum to face justice for what he did. It's not like you Aikane to just give up. You need to talk to someone that can help you deal with everything that happened yesterday. Please…"
"You seem to think you know what's best for me! That I'm incapable of looking after myself!" Danny hissed before he shook his head slowly, hurt and disappointment replacing the white hot anger that flared only moments ago, "You don't trust me to deal with this my own way, do you?"
"Danno, I just want to help you and this is the only way I can. It's not that I don't trust you but I do think you need someone to talk to. Please Aikane, all I ask is you have a chat with Dr. Bishop "
Danny nodded reluctantly aware that if he wanted to back to work he had no other choice. "Ok Steve, you win. I'll talk to the shrink but this doesn't mean that I'm gunna let you talk me into filing a complaint. I just wanna get back to work and forget about this ever happening. Please lets just leave it at this."
"Talk to Dr. Bishop first Danno before you decide about whether or not to let this drop." Steve answered quietly. "We can talk about that decision afterwards my friend."
Aware that Steve was not about to let this drop, Danny sighed unhappily and nodded as he watched Steve turn and head back to his bedroom to dress for work.
Disappointed at the lack of progress on Danny's 'unofficial' rape case, Steve sighed as he closed the file on Che's forensic report of the evidence that had been collected from Danny and his apartment after the attack yesterday. He had been desperately hoping that maybe they had missed something but Che's report had been thorough. Everything had been checked and double-checked and still there was little evidence that they could use.
Reaching again for the statements that Chin had collected from neighbors and potential witnesses, McGarrett growled, incensed at how someone could be attacked in their own home, in a large apartment complex, surrounded by neighbors and friends and yet no one seemed to have noticed anything. The only witness who could offer any help was only able to give a vague description of a large Hawaiian standing in the parking garage about the same time as the attack. Even the victim was unwilling to co – operate. Danny claimed it was too dark to make out what his attacker looked like.
McGarrett paused and frowned as he remembered Danno's own words- "I…I told you Steve…it was dark…" It wasn't dark when the witness saw the stranger in the parking garage; it was a little after dawn. The witness description of the stranger matched with the vague description Danno had managed to give him earlier.
Rising from his chair, McGarrett began to pace. 'Had dawn broke as Danno had been assaulted? Was it possible that Danno had seen his attacker's face?'
His thoughts were interrupted by a short sharp knock at his door before May entered carrying a business size envelope in her hand. "This just arrived for you - special delivery, Steve." The brunette secretary announced as she handed him the envelope.
The golden-penned address on the envelope was beautifully hand written, each letter printed elegantly on the paper, it reminded him of the calligraphy that his mother had practiced for hours when he was younger. McGarrett studied it carefully; the postmark was dated this morning from the Honolulu post office. Turning the envelope over in his hand, Steve McGarrett frowned as he stared at the lack of a return address and the lipstick kiss that sealed it. Reaching for the letter opener, he quickly and deftly sliced the paper apart and shook the contents onto his desk.
Staring at the graphic photos that fell across his desk, McGarrett was unable to hold back the shocked gasp that slipped from his lips. The photos were all color Polaroid's showing in graphic detail Danno's sexual assault. Hot bile rose in the back of his throat and he had to swallow hard to force it back down as he reached for the intercom button and angrily pushed it demanding Kono and Chin to come into his office, the tone of his voice warned both men that something had happened.
Both men entered the office a few moments later and hurried across to where McGarrett was pushing scattered photos that were upon his desk around with his pencil.
"Awue!" Kono murmured as he stared at the photos.
"My God!" Chin whispered as he also saw what the photos contained. McGarrett silently nodded, not yet trusting his voice as he forced himself to study each photo with the professionalism of a cop and not the emotions of a friend. Each photo was a still snapshot of the rape, graphically capturing Danno's humiliation, fear and pain. In each shot the rapist face had been carefully blackened out, making it impossible to identify him. Shaking out of his own shock at the sight of the photos, Steve pulled out his handkerchief and picked up the envelope, shaking it carefully over his desk. An ivory piece of paper tumbled out and floated down to land face up on top of one of the photos.
The three detectives leaned closer to read the elegantly handwritten note.
I just wanted to give you a little sneak peak of how much fun your boy and I had together. I'm not sure that he enjoyed it as much but that's OK because I certainly did!
I hope the boy passed on my message - I told him to make sure he did!
This was your fault, McGarrett! He was punished for your sins! You try and screw with me again and the next time I won't let him live!
McGarrett's blood ran cold as he re read the note again. This was his fault? Oh God had Danny been raped as punishment for something he had done? Was this some sicko's idea of revenge against him? A glance towards the two ashen faces of his detectives watching him told him that they were wondering the same things.
Anger replaced his shock and fear and McGarrett quickly and carefully gathered up the photos and note with his handkerchief, placing them back into the envelope before picking it up with the cloth and handing it across to Kono. "Get this to Che. Tell him we need everything he can give us from these and we need the results yesterday! Remind him that this is top priority and that NO ONE but he is to see the photos!"
Kono nodded as he silently acknowledged the order, carefully taking the envelope before he hurried from the room.
Turning to Chin, Steve reached into his pocket and pulled out his keys. Quickly he sorted through them until he located the one he needed and slipping it from the key ring he passed it across to the Chinese detective as he ordered. "Danno's at my apartment. Make sure he doesn't leave your sight! I don't want him left unguarded even for a second; this animal still has his sights on him! If Danno objects to the protection, tell him to contact me! "
"Will do, Boss." Chin answered as he turned and raced out of the office.
Reaching for the phone, McGarrett dialed the number for the consulting psychiatrist, only to be told that she was in a private meeting with Bergman in his office. Thanking the young receptionist, McGarrett hung up the phone and quickly dialed the familiar number for the Coroner's office. 'Why didn't Danno tell me everything!' he wondered as he listened to the tinny tone of the phone on the other end of the line ring. 'No wonder he doesn't want it investigated- he doesn't want me to know' came the guilty answer to his question and he jumped as his thoughts were interrupted as Doc's voice answered the phone.
Taking a sip of her coffee, Brenda Bishop looked over her mug at her companion sitting opposite as she softly said. "Danny came and saw me this morning for his first session."
"How did it go?" Bergman asked cautiously.
"About as well as I expected the first session to go. He claims that he is fine and couldn't understand why both you and McGarrett insisted that he undergo a counseling session with me."
"Typical Five O detective," Doc grumbled affectionately, "Danny has learnt fast! They think that they know better than the doctors about their health."
The petite psychiatrist shrugged, "He is extremely reluctant to talk about what happened but that is not surprising. When I did manage to get him to start talking about the rape, he denies remembering many details of what happened."
"And you don't believe he doesn't remember?" Doc asked frowning.
Placing the mug back down onto the table, Dr Bishop answered softly, "I think he remembers every second of the attack but something tells me that he isn't telling anyone the full details of what occurred."
"He was physically assaulted during the attack. I put the details of the injuries he sustained in the report I sent you." Doc reminded her. "The bruised kidney and the blow to the stomach, "
Brenda nodded remembering the notes she had read, "No, that's not quite what I meant. He's trying hard to hide something… what it is, I'm not sure yet."
"Danny has a way of turning the blame onto himself, maybe he believes that he is somehow responsible." Bergman suggested.
"Hmmm," The Psychiatrist hummed noncommittally as she lifted the mug back up to her lips and took a small sip before lowering it down again and holding it firmly between her hands as she eyed the coroner closely, "I'm sure with a little time and understanding, he should open up and tell me everything that happened. I understand that Steve is insisting that Danny stay with him and not return to his apartment."
"He's concerned about Danny's safety. He still doesn't know if this is a random sexual assault or something more." Doc explained, "He gets a little protective when it comes to his youngest detective."
"That's understandable. How do you think Steve would feel about Danny possibly returning back to work tomorrow?" She asked.
"Do you think he is ready to?" Doc blinked in surprise, the image of the extremely distraught young man who had rushed out of McGarrett's apartment only yesterday flickered through his mind. Danny still seemed subdued when he had visited McGarrett's apartment this morning to check on the young detective's physical condition.
"I think he needs to return to his normal routine quickly. I'm not talking about full police duties just yet just light office duties or do you think that his physical injuries are not healed enough?"
The Coroner shook his head, "Physically he's fine for light duties, it was more how he is coping emotionally and mentally that I am concerned about. So do you really think that allowing him to return to work so soon after the attack is the best option?" Doc asked concerned.
"I think Danny needs to get back into his normal routine as soon as possible; sitting around McGarrett's apartment dwelling on what happened is not going to be healthy for him " The psychiatrist explained, "Danny wants to be back at work, he wants to get back the control in his life that he feels he has lost.
I know that Steve is pressuring him to allow Five O to investigate the rape. He doesn't want that to happen, he is extremely scared that the rape will become public knowledge; he just wants to move past it and move on with his life. I'm worried about how much Steve's own unconscious sense of justice and over protectiveness is going to interfere with that. We both know that Steve can be a little…" Brenda paused, searching for a diplomatic way to say her next words.
"Stubborn, hard headed, pushy…" Bergman supplied with a grin
"I was going to say 'determined' when it comes to the pursuit of justice but your descriptions are just as good." Dr. Bishop smiled before she grew more serious, "We both know that Steve holds a lot of influence over Dan but I am worried if Steve tries to force Dan into doing something he doesn't want to do, how Dan is going to react."
"Pushed into a corner, that boy tends to come out swinging." Doc began before he hesitated a moment and looked across at his colleague, "I'm not sure if that's a good or a bad thing. It's got him hurt a couple of times."
"Maybe I can suggest to McGarrett that we set up a private meeting between us and the Five O staff to discuss the best ways of helping Dan to recover. " Doc suggested.
Brenda smiled, "That might work. I would like Danny back at work as soon as tomorrow if that's possible. If we are all on the same page and in agreement with how this whole thing is handled the easier it will be to path the way for his complete recovery."
"I'll arrange it with Steve," Bergman agreed as they rose from their seats and began to walk towards his office door. "What time do you want us together?"
"Thanks Peter," Brenda smiled but the shrill ring of the phone interrupted her answer.
Bergman sighed and held up his hand as he stepped across to his desk and snatched up the phone, "Coroner's Office, Bergman speaking." Bergman listened to the caller for a couple of seconds before his next words caught Brenda's attention. "Yes Steve, she's here. We were just talking about Danny."
She watched as Bergman's face creased with worry as he listened to the detective before he tersely answered, "No, I'll tell her. We will be right over." Hanging up he turned to back to the Psychiatrist waiting expectantly beside him. "Steve wants us in his office now. He just received explicit photos of Danny's rape and a threatening note in the mail."
"Oh dear." Brenda gasped, "It sounds like we are dealing with some type of psychopath."
"Steve wants to catch this guy and bring him to justice! Oh God, don't you understand! If he does that than the whole world is going to know! How can I move past that?"
"Only you can decide how you want to handle this, Danny. You are the only one who can make that decision, not Steve."
"How can I stop him? He won't listen! He's decided what is best for me!"
"Only you can decide what best for you, not Steve. You can let it tear you apart by not dealing with it or you can deal with it and move beyond what happened. I know that you say that you can't remember everything that happened but I think you do. You need to talk about it as hard and frightening as that might seem. I promise you that whatever you say stays in this room, Steve won't be told anything we discuss unless you give me permission."
The session with Dr. Bishop replayed over and over in his head as he paid the driver and exited the cab. Stepping out onto the sidewalk, he stared up at his apartment building as he built up the courage to enter inside.
The ride in the elevator to his floor seemed to take forever and he could feel his heart rise up in his throat as he reluctantly approached the front door of his apartment and pulled the keys to his apartment out of his pants pocket. It took him several attempts before he was able to calm his shaking hand enough to place his key into the lock and he held his breath in fear as he pushed the door slowly open.
He entered cautiously, leaving the door open behind him as he scanned the room. When no one jumped out at him; he chided himself for being so stupid as he hurried across to his bedroom to grab a few changes of clothes.
The mattress was bare as all the sheets and bedding had been removed, even the pillows. It was just as well. He'd never use those things again; in fact, he might go out and buy a new bed. He shuddered as the memory yesterday flooded though his consciousness. No, he'd never be able to sleep there again.
The bed had to go. Turning to his closest, he quickly pulled the door open and began to grab whatever clothes that were closest to him as the room seem to shrink and the air seemed to disappear threatening to suffocate him. Maybe he needed more than a new bed. Maybe he needed a new apartment. Looking anxiously around, he wondered if he would ever feel comfortable, or safe, here again.
Stuffing his clothes into a small travel bag he nearly ran for the door. Reaching the safety of the corridor outside, he slammed the door closed before he stumbled towards the lift. 'If we are going to catch this animal, we need to investigate…Danno, we can't let him get away with this' Steve's voice screamed in his head.
"No, Steve," he whispered to himself as he repeatedly pushed the button, "You don't understand." He moaned as the elevator doors opened and he stumbled inside, his tears spilling down his face as the doors slowly closed, "If you do than everyone will know."
He could barely see through his tears as the doors slid open a few minutes later as he stumbled out and headed to his car. Unlocking the car door, he slid behind the wheel and revved the engine before reversing out of his parking slot. He never noticed the couple that turned and stared as he accelerated forward and his wheel squealed on the slick cement. All he wanted to do was escape!
Hesitating outside his boss's apartment door, Chin tried to think of a way he could break the news to Danny that after all he had endured he was still in danger. Steve had been quite specific in his orders "Danno's at my apartment. Make sure he doesn't leave your sight! I don't want him left unguarded even for a second; this animal still has his sights on him! If Danno objects to the protection tell him to contact me!"
He prepared for the hot objection he knew was about to come as he first knocked on the door. Receiving no answer, he frowned, wondering if Danny was asleep as he slipped the key into the lock and opened the door, calling out Danny's name as he entered.
The apartment remained silent and he quickly moved through the rooms searching for his colleague. It only took a minute to see that the apartment was empty and Chin wondered where the younger man might be.
His chest tightened with fear as he realized the possible answer and he turned and hurried out of the apartment. He wouldn't have, would he? Chin shook his head and answered his own question. This was Danny he was wondering about, of course he had!
Chin had no doubts that he had broken the speed limit as he drove across town to the younger man's apartment and swinging the large dark sedan into the parking garage he released a groan as he saw the Mustang was gone. Steve was not going to like this!
McGarrett waited until the two doctors and the forensic scientist had settled in the chairs in front of his desk before he nodded at his Hawaiian detective to shut the door and join them. Opening the closed file that sat on the desk in front of him, he picked up the small stack of photos and passed them silently to the psychiatrist, watching her reactions closely as she studied each one before passing them onto the coroner sitting next to her.
The photos were explicit and deliberately edited to elicit maximum shock and disgust from whoever viewed them. Dr Bishop shook her head as she studied the last one; there was no doubt in her mind of the type of mind they were dealing with. As she passed the last photo to Doc, she looked up at the dark haired man who was watching her closely. "I think the rape was just the start." She began slowly, "He wants to punish Danny for what ever deed he believes Danny is responsible for."
"Not Danno," Steve interrupted, picking up an ivory piece of paper from the file and handing it across to her, "he's punishing me and he is using Danno to do so!"
Scanning the note quickly, Dr Bishop tried to stifle a gasp as she looked back across at McGarrett.
"Has Danny seen this?" McGarrett shook his head, "No and I don't think he should, he's having enough of a rough time dealing with what happened."
Casting a quick glance at Bergman, Bishop returned her attention to the lead detective. "I had a session with Danny today," she began quietly, "I felt he was hiding something. I think I now know what that was. I doubt your rapist would have missed the opportunity not to tell Danny who was to blame for what happened."
"Awue!" Kono muttered from somewhere behind them.
"Danny needs to be told about the existence of these photos. "Bishop continued, "And I recommend that he not be left alone. Whoever this rapist is - he is a psychopath and I have no doubts that he intends to carry out his threats. Danny needs to be protected…"
"I have already taken steps to do that Doctor!' Steve interrupted but he was cut off as Dr Bishop continued.
"But he also needs to be told why. He feels that he has lost control of his life and that you are making all the decisions for him Steve, whether he agrees with those decisions made or not. He needs to be aware of what is happening and allowed some say in how he is protected. If this doesn't happen Steve, he is going to baulk and place himself in danger just to spite you!" Bishop warned.
"Danno needs some guidance, Doctor!" McGarrett hissed, "He's been through a great deal and isn't thinking straight! I know when the shock wears off he's going to want to bring this scum to justice. And as for him seeing these photos…"
"He's scared about everyone finding out, Steve!" Bergman harshly interrupted. "He's tried to tell you several times but you aren't listening…'
Bergman's angry tirade was halted as McGarrett's phone rung and he fell silent as the angry detective snatched up the receiver and growled, "McGarrett."
The look of anger that dominated McGarrett's face quickly morphed into fear and worry as he listened to the caller. When the caller had stopped speaking he softly ordered, "Drive around and see if you can find him, Chin. I'll start searching his favorite beaches and will get Kono to ring around his friends, maybe he has headed to one of their places."
Slamming down the phone, he rose and grabbed his jacket before turning back to the small group sitting in his office. "That was Chin," he quickly explained, "Danno wasn't at my apartment and his Mustang has gone from his. Kono ring around his friends, maybe one of them have seen him. Doctor Bishop please have a look through this folder, I need a profile of our suspect and what you think his next move may be." Turning towards Che, he ordered. "I know you got a partial palm print from Danno's apartment and some partial prints from the photos, please try and see if you can get a match and I need to know where those photos were printed! I'm going to see if I can find Danno before this madman does!"
He did not wait for anyone to acknowledge his requests or orders before he ran out of the door.
"Steve, I just talked to a surfer buddy who hits da waves on da Pipe. He says dat Danny is up there now, hitting da big surf." Kono's voice sounded neutral across the police airwaves but McGarrett could hear the tension in other man's tone. He knew from the chatter over the police radio that the waves on the North Shore were extremely high, rough and dangerous today. There had been several calls for ambulances and a near drowning at the famous Banzia Pipeline already and HPD had considered closing the world famous surfing beach because of the treacherous conditions.
McGarrett's hand tightened around the mic and he forced his voice to remain calm and neutral as he pressed the button and answered, "Thanks Kono." Replacing the mic, he pressed his foot a little harder on the accelerator anxious to reach his wayward friend.
Pulling into the parking area close to the famous beach, he jumped out of the car before it rocked to a complete stop and hurried down to the beach. The HPD reports of the treacherous conditions had not been exaggerated the waves were wild and at least 30 feet high. Out in the middle of the maelstrom of water, he could see the familiar figure of his friend.
The young detective's sandy hair and red surfboard were easily recognized amongst the small group of surfers who pitted their skills against the angry sea. Standing on the beach Steve watched terrified as Danny caught wave after wave of the dangerously high surf, riding the waves with a deceptive ease, racing down the larger waves like a skier down a snowy slope before flicking the board and darting back up to the top. He seemed to be deliberately catching the larger waves and remaining too long in the barrels until they began to collapse around him almost as if daring the wave to crush him.
Watching the young man's reckless and wild antics in the surf scared McGarrett much more than he would ever admit to anyone and he held his breath as he watched his friend disappear into another monstrous wave, releasing it only when Danno reappeared.
Danny enjoyed the power of the wave beneath him as he used his hand to play with the powerful wall of water that he was riding. Here he felt whole, safe and in control of his fate, all his deepest fears and worries seemed to disappear. Topping the crest of the next wave, he glanced towards the shoreline as he began to maneuver his board into the next wave. He growled in anger as he recognized the dark haired figure that seemed to be watching him from the beach, near where he had left his towel. Steve! Why couldn't he just stay away? Why couldn't he just leave him alone?
Distracted by the sight of his boss, Danny felt the wave catch him and had no time to compensate before he was violently and unmercifully thrown into the water, his body slamming hard into the hard coral below as he was tumbled beneath the water, his head struck something sharp and he fought to remain alert as the watery shapes around him turned gray.
Steve froze as he watched as Danny suddenly lost his balance and tumbled beneath the crushing water, his board catapulting high into the sky before falling back into the water. "Danno!" The shocked whispered slipped from his lips as McGarrett ran down to the water's edge, ignoring the desperate shouts of 'Wipeout' that echoed around him as he scanned the waves for some sign of the downed surfer.
Out on the waves, other surfers appeared to de doing the same, as spectators from the shore raced into the surf and began to swim out to help in the frantic search. Pacing into the water, Steve continued to desperately scan the waves, watching as surfer's paddled in increasing circle around the area where his young friend had disappeared, his heart sinking as faint yells of "Any sign of him?" "Not yet!" drifted back over the roar of the waves. "Come on Danno, don't do this to us. Don't you dare give up!" he whispered to the waves.
"There he is!"
The excited shout caught the dark haired detective's attention and he moved even deeper into the water, ignoring the waves as they splashed over his hips as he tried anxiously to see over the wave peaks as the surfer dove into the water.
Tony swam to where Dan floated face down in the water. Reaching his friend, he quickly rolled the young surfer over and grimaced at the bloody scrape on the side of Danny's head as Danny gasped and began to cough violently. "Dammit Danny, don't you ever scare me like this again Bruddah!" he murmured to his friend as Danny's eyes flickered open. After reassuring the disorientated young surfer that he was safe, he wrapped his arm around Danny's chest and began to tow him towards the shore, body surfing the waves as they propelled them swiftly through the water.
As the two surfers neared the shore, Steve was relieved to see Danny trying to stand up as surfers and spectators ran to assist him from the water. The large Hawaiian who had rescued Dan carefully wrapped Danny's arm around his neck and holding the young injured surfer around the waist, helped him to walk up the small incline of the beach to where their towels were.
Steve tried to move in to help but was roughly brushed aside by several surfers as they crowded around the injured young surfer.
"I'm OK." Danny muttered between harsh coughs as his friend half walked; half carried him.
"Yeah, sure Bruddah, you're ok! You just wiped out on the biggest wave of the day and had to be rescued." Tony retorted sarcastically as he lowered Danny carefully down onto his towel and began to check him for injuries, "And you try and tell me that you're ok!"
"I'm fine!" Danny insisted, irritably slapping Tony's hands away as his friend gently examined the many cuts and abrasions that now marred the young man's body and face.
"I think you should get Doc to check you out, Danno!" Steve advised as he dropped to his knees beside his young friend. "Some of these cuts look nasty, especially the one on your leg, it might need a few stitches."
Danny looked up with an angry glare, "I'm fine!" he insisted, "What are you doing here anyway?"
"I wanted to talk to you and explain some things," Steve answered softly, placing his hand lightly on Dan's shoulder as his other hand gently touched the fast swelling abrasions on the side of Danny's face before brushing the wet curls away as he tried to see the bloodied lump hidden beneath them. "But that's not important now, what is important is to make sure you are ok, Aikane."
Danny hissed in pain as Steve's fingers brushed against a sore spot and he shrugged his boss's hand angrily from his shoulder. "Well, I don't particularly feel like talking to you!' he snapped and pulled away, closing his eyes as a wave of dizziness and nausea washed over him in protest to the sudden movement.
"I really think that Doc should have a look at you." Steve insisted quietly reaching for Danny's arm to help him up.
"I'm fine! It's just a scratch!" Danny growled softly, "I can take care of it myself! I don't need you telling me what I should do! You don't listen to anything I say anyway so why should I listen to you!" Pushing Steve away, Danny rose unsteadily to his feet, swaying for a few moments as he tried to ignore the dizziness before he began to walk away, surrounded by several surfers.
"Danno!" McGarrett rose from his position in the sand and stepped towards the retreating back of his closest friend but the large Hawaiian surfer who had rescued Danny suddenly blocked his pathway.
Tony stared at the dark haired detective, sensing something more was just going on then a simple argument at the office as Danny had claimed earlier.
Tony had known Dan since childhood and had often surfed the big waves together but in the last year or so since Danny had joined the elite police unit he had almost lost all contact with his friend. He had been a little surprised when he had spotted an upset and agitated Danny hurrying down the street just two days ago.
Danny had seemed upset and pre occupied when they had picked him up and taken him to the beach with them. The young detective had drifted away from the group and Tony had watched him discreetly during the afternoon concerned with the young man's solitary brooding. Before he had been able to sneak away from the others unnoticed to talk to the younger man and try and discover what was wrong, McGarrett had arrived and Danny had left with him.
He had known today when Danny had joined him and insisted on going surfing in the wild conditions that something was seriously amiss with the young man. He had tried to get Dan to open up several times about what the problem was but Dan had refused to discuss it.
Now staring at McGarrett, Tony had no doubt that this man was somehow responsible for Dan's agitation. He knew that Danny had developed a serious case of hero worship for this man after he had joined Five O but he also suspected that McGarrett sometimes used it to his advantage, although to suggest that to the young surfing detective would bring an instant and hot denial. It was because of this man that Dan had stopped competing in the big surf meets and he suspected it was because of something this man had done today that had caused Danny to decided to surf in such dangerous conditions.
"Danno!" McGarrett called again, waiting expectantly for the young man to stop in his tracks and return.
Tony's own anger flared at that this man was somehow responsible for the obvious emotional pain his young friend was in and he stepped closer until he stood only inches away from the other man as he hissed. "He doesn't want to talk to you! I don't know yet what you did to upset him but I'm warning you cop, I don't care if you are the BIG BOSSMAN of law enforcement on these islands but if you don't leave him alone or try and force him to do something he obviously doesn't want to do, then you will have to deal with me! And that's not a threat, McGarrett, that's a promise!" He gave a last disgusted glare at the detective before he turned his back on the speechless man and walked towards where Danny was being assisted into the back of a van.
Standing in the shadows of a palm tree near the edge of the edge of the sand, he watched the exchange between the two detectives on the beach in front of everyone. He smiled as the injured Williams and his entourage walked directly past him, close enough that he could have caressed the damp sandy curls if he wanted. He felt himself harden at the thought and rubbed his groin as he closed his eyes and remembered the last time that the young detective had been so close.
He turned to follow his victim but the sound of a raised and angry voice from the beach behind him caught his attention and he quickly turned back again. The large Hawaiian surfer who had dragged Williams from the surf was standing toe to toe with SUPERCOP McGarrett and threatening him if he caused his boy any more pain. Unable to stifle the laugh of joy as he watched McGarrett's stunned expression, he waited until the angry Hawaiian had brushed past him and joined Williams before he turned and followed.
Danny flinched as the light shone in one eye and then the other. "That hurt, hey?" Tony asked as he gently palpated the swollen knot on the side of Danny's head.
The younger man winced and gave a small tight smile, "Yeah."
"Headache? Nausea?' At Dan's small nod, Tony grunted. "I should send you for some x-rays but I know you would just refuse. You have a concussion." Unable to stop the small chuckle that escaped his lips as Danny grimaced at the diagnosis, he continued his examination, gently placing Danny's injured leg up onto the coffee table as he began to examine the deep jagged cut that ran along the thigh.
Cleaning the cut, he looked up. "Looks like McGarrett was right about your leg." At Dan's confused, questioning look, Tony smiled as he picked up a small ampoule he had sitting on the table. He broke off the top before he inserted the needle and drew up the liquid inside. "You do need stitches! I'll even be extra nice and numb it before I clean it out and stitch it."
He grinned as Danny groaned and swiftly injected the Lidocaine around the jagged cut. Talking as he worked, he informed Dan, "You will probably need to have who ever officially looks after you guys to check you over and clear you for work, especially with the concussion. Tell me who it is and I can contact him and give him all the details of your injuries. I will also need to let him know that I am writing you a script for antibiotics and painkillers. So who do I contact?"
"Umm, Doc Bergman." Danny answered as he closed his eyes, shutting out the nauseating sight of Tony suturing his leg.
Tony hesitated and looked up at the young detective in disbelief. "You're having me on, aren't you Danny? Berg, the Coroner?"
Swallowing hard against his losing battle against the nausea and dizziness, Danny nodded slowly and carefully, "He's the only one McGarrett trusts."
"Good choice, I've never heard any of his patients complain about his bedside manner. " Tony grinned as he finished suturing and bandaging the limp. "Well Bruddah, it looks like you are going to be my houseguest for the next couple of days." He announced as he stood up.
"I'm ok, Tony, I can manage at home." Danny argued nervously as he began to rise out of the chair. Pain flared through his back and he cried out, clutching his lower back in agony.
The young doctor/ surfer jumped up and grabbed his shoulders to steady him as he lowered him back onto the chair. "You didn't tell me that you hurt your back." He scolded the young detective as he eased Danny forward and examined him. He stifled the shocked gasp at the sight of the dark bruise that covered the lower left side of Danny's back and disappeared beneath his swimming trunks. "God, Danny, what have you done to your back?" he asked as he leaned the young detective back,
"This injury didn't happen today!" Danny shrugged and looked away, unable to look his friend in the eyes and he answered, "I was punched the other day and it bruised my kidney. Ain't no big thing, Doc has already checked it out. He said that it wasn't too bad that he just needed to keep a bit of an eye on it."
"But he didn't say you were well enough to take on the Pipeline on a big day, did he?" Tony growled in frustration at the risk Danny had taken. Lowering his voice, he observed, "You were upset when you rang me up to go surfing and you didn't seem too happy to see McGarrett when he showed up at the beach this afternoon. Want to talk about it?"
Danny shrugged tiredly, not even bothering to open his eyes that had slid closed, "Not much to talk about." He muttered quietly, "I just didn't feel like talking to him!"
"Ah," Tony murmured as he cleared away the bandages and equipment he had used and sat down on the sofa beside Danny. "So do you feel like talking to me? Sometimes it does help, you know?"
May jumped in surprise and looked up from her typing as the anteroom office door slammed open and McGarrett entered. The look on the boss's face warned the secretary that now was not the time to ask if he had found Danny. It was obvious that he had and the meeting between the two of had not gone well.
Steve did not say a word as he stormed through the outer office and entered his office, slamming the door closed behind him. She glanced at the two detectives who quietly emerged from their cubicles and were now silently staring at their boss's closed door.
"I gather Danny didn't want to talk." Chin said softly
"Either that or da kaikaina refused da boss's offer of protection, Bruddah. " Kono breathed.
The secretary shook her head, "They're both as stubborn as each other."
Chin shook his head, "I'm not sure I can really blame Danny," he admitted, glancing towards McGarrett's door,
"Danny's hurting and scared and all Steve does is keeps on pushing. No wonder Danny is running. I want this bastard as much as the boss does but not at Danny's expense. If I was Dan I doubt I would want the possibility of what happened leaking out."
Kono nodded in agreement, "The Boss might think its bad now, but if the press gets wind of this it'll be a whole lot worse, and Danny will be the one who suffers."
"Steve's hurting too," May gently interrupted, "He's blaming himself for not being able to protect Danny."
Both men dropped their heads in embarrassment and nodded.
"Steve would take on Pele if he thought it would save Danny from getting hurt." Chin quietly admitted.
"Must be rough on da Boss after reading the note." Kono added before explaining at May's questioning look, "It said he was the reason why Danny was raped."
"Oh my God!" May gasped, "No wonder why he wants this animal so bad!"
"We're trying to check all of Steve's past arrests for anyone who fits the profile, " Chin informed her, "But the list is so long, its gunna take us ages just to narrow it down, even with the vague descriptions. We're hoping Che might come up with something from the partials."
"I wonder what da Boss is gunna do if Danny has refused protection. " Kono pondered, "Steve is already skating on thin lava rock investigating the case without Danny's permission."
"I'm surprised Steve even gave Danny the choice," Chin frowned, "What I don't understand is where Danny is now and who is watching him."
Glancing back at the closed office door May and Kono both shrugged. Neither of them could imagine Steve leaving Danny unprotected.
Pulling off his coat he threw it on the chair and then, turning, slammed his hand on the desk. Why did Danno have to be so stubborn?
"I can take care of it myself! I don't need you telling me what I should do! You don't listen to anything I say anyway so why should I listen to you!"
"He's scared about everyone finding out, Steve! He's tried to tell you several times but you aren't listening…'
Steve McGarrett sighed as he unconsciously fingered the open file lying on the desk in front of him as the words played over and over in his mind. "I DO listen to you Danno, but you of all people should understand the importance of bringing this animal to justice."
Steve closed the file and walked out on the lanai, taking a deep breath of the warm, fragrant air, his thoughts still focused on his second-in command. "Danno, you know I only want what's best for you. I would never do anything to hurt you. Why won't you trust me on this?"
Danny walked slowly along the deserted beach, the rays of the setting sun adding warm colors to the cooling sand. Kicking the occasional shell as the warm waves lapped over his bare feet, he hoped the pain that throbbed in his body could erase the pain that throbbed in his soul. Why wouldn't Steve listen to him? Why couldn't he just leave things alone? Steve said he was his friend, but what kind of friend would fail to see the humiliation that awaited him if this ever became known to the public? No, he thought as the sun sank lower over the distant horizon, Steve doesn't want justice, he wants revenge. Danny watched the glimmering red streaks of reflected sunlight on the top tips of the waves as anger, fear and hope warred within him. Could Steve be right? Shaking his head as he nudged a seashell with his toe he knew the answer...no the price was just too high to pay.
He had never felt so alone, so adrift with nowhere or no one to turn to, Steve had been his anchor for so long, but now?
He knew that Tony was more than willing to listen and maybe would even understand but the mere thought of admitting to anyone what had happened or even worse, to admit the person ultimately responsible for the attack was more that he was willing or even able to do. The pain, both physical and emotional was becoming almost too much to bear, but the thought of sharing it, even with Tony, was something he didn't think he could do. Saying it out loud to anyone made the humiliation a living thing that had to be faced, keeping it to himself at least kept it in the shadows, hidden but feared just the same. He sighed and kicked at the sand despondently, uncertain of just what to do.
A soft sound close behind him alerted him he was no longer alone but before he was able to turn, an arm encircled his neck as a second arm wrapped itself tightly around his chest. A cold, livid fear swallowed him as he began fight desperately to break free. The arm tightened painfully around his throat as he heard a chillingly familiar voice whisper, "I told you, you were mine Williams and I've come back to play!"
"No!" he managed to whisper as the pressure increased and his vision grayed as his desperate struggles weaken and his consciousness began to fade. Danny tried to elbow his attacker in the ribs, but being held at an angle tilted slightly backward, he couldn't get the strength behind it he needed, so all he succeeded in doing was increasing the faceless man's anger.
He no longer had the strength or even the energy to cry out when he felt the hard solid fist connect with his sore back. The pain was excruciating and he felt his legs give out beneath him as he allowed himself to slip into the safety of unconsciousness.
"I told you, you were mine, Williams," Whispered the soft, threatening voice as the unconscious form slumped into the sand before Danny was slowly dragged towards the sand dunes.
Placing the three bottles of medication on the table, Tony frowned as he noticed the glass sliding door that led out to the beach open. When he had left to fill the prescriptions for Danny's medication, the young surfer had been asleep on the sofa. Tony had not expected Danny to wake during the short time he had left the house and quickly hurried outside to try and locate the missing young man.
Looking up the beach he spotted his wayward friend standing forlornly on the sand, staring out towards the setting sun. He sighed, silently wishing Danny would drop his defenses and talk to him about what ever it was that was troubling him. The young detective had become extremely agitated when he had tried to push him to talk earlier, insisting the problem was work related- that McGarrett and he had merely disagreed on the handling of a sensitive case.
Tony shook his head as he started to walk towards where Danny now stood. Whatever was troubling Dan was far more serious than just a disagreement over a case, it was eating him alive. Danny needed to talk about what ever it was and this time Tony decided there would be no excuses or refusals to do so.
He felt his heart momentarily stop as he saw a large Hawaiian emerge from the sand dunes and grab Danny from behind without warning. "Hey what's going on?" he yelled desperately as he ran towards where the two men were struggling, "What are you doing? Let him go!" But his shouts were either unheard or totally ignored as the stranger roughly punched Danny in the back and then dragged the young man back into the sand dunes. "Hey man, leave him alone!" He yelled again as he tried to follow them into the darkening dunes.
Danny felt himself being dropped to the ground but before he could make any sense of his current situation, he felt someone's hands tug at his t-shirt pulling the material roughly over his head and off his arms. "No, don't!" he protested weakly, attempting to push away the hands as he forced his eyes open and tried to focus on the large figure that hovered above him.
His weak protests were answered by a haunting laugh as a voice whispered in his ear, "You're mine Williams, all mine and McGarrett is the reason!"
Danny gasped as he recognized the voice from his nightmares and he began to struggle as the large Hawaiian settled on top of him, pinning him to the ground. "OH God, get off of me!' he yelled.
"Not until we have some more fun!" The voice whispered in his ear as the man's hands traveled down to his shorts and began to push down the material.
"No, don't!" Danny gasped again as he struggled to push the man away but the man's weight was too much and his struggles only buried him deeper into the soft sand. "Leave me alone!" he yelled as he managed to free one arm and reached out, searching the sand for anything he could use to defend himself as the man continued to tug to lower his shorts. His hand found something hard and round, about the size of his fist and his fingers curled around it, holding it tight as he used all his strength and brought it down on the side of his attacker's head.
He heard the man cry out as the rock found its mark and his attacker collapsed limp on top of him. The sensation of being trapped under the man's body panicked him and he desperately used the last of his remaining strength to roll free. Struggling to his feet, he backed away from the body on the ground before he turned and ran, not sure just where he was going or what he was going to do but the only thing he did know for certain was he wasn't safe here.
Reaching the top of the sand dune, Tony stared in horror as he saw in the fading light the Hawaiian on top of his young friend. Danny was struggling, desperately reaching for something in the sand. "Oh God, get the hell off him!" he screamed as he ran forward, stumbling and falling in the loose sand. Pushing himself back up onto his feet he saw Danny strike the Hawaiian in the head.
"Danny!" he yelled as the young surfer roll free of his attacker and come unsteadily to his feet staring at the downed man. "Danny!" Even in the fading light, he could see the fear in his friend's posture and watched helplessly as Danny turned and fled.
Reaching the Hawaiian, Tony hesitated from following as he heard a soft groan. He turned and stared at the injured man on the ground, momentarily deciding whether or not to ignore him and follow Dan but he knew that no matter what this animal had just done it was his duty to help him. Looking back in the direction where Danny had fled, Tony sighed when all he saw was darkness and no sign of his friend. He turned back and knelt down beside the injured man but quickly realized that any medical assistance he could offer was now useless…the man had just died from his injury.
Seeing there was nothing he could do, he jumped up and ran across the dark cooling sand in the direction he last saw his friend, "Danny! Danny where are you?" But the only sound was the surf lapping softly onto the beach.
Stepping onto the crest of the dune, McGarrett stood silently for a few moments watching the organized but frenzied activity just below. The area had been well lit with portable floodlights turning the dark night into day. In the middle of the taped off crime scene was a still form covered by a sheet. Even from where he stood, McGarrett could see clear impressions in the sand that indicated some sort of a struggle. Unfortunately it was hard to cordon off the whole crime scene. The unstable sand shifted constantly, easily covering any evidence.
He sighed as he stepped closer. Initial reports had been sketchy and care had been taken by both Kono and Chin to report what little facts they had to him over the telephone rather than broadcast it over the radio where the eavesdropping ears of the media might over hear. So far all he knew was the victim, so far unidentified had been seen struggling with Danno on the beach before dragging the young detective back into the protection of the dunes. The witness had reported that he had tried to follow but had not reached them in time to stop the attempt of a sexual assault. McGarrett swallowed hard and tried to calm his emotions- another sexual assault. He drew a deep breath as he forced himself back into cop mode trying to distance himself from his emotions, concentrating on the facts. The witness had told them, Danny had struck his attacker in the head with a rock that he had grabbed from the sand in an attempt to escape and after rolling free had fled into the darkness.
Steve looked past the brilliant lights to the cold, black sand beyond knowing that that was where his most important clue laid...the direction Danno had gone, but even now the tractors were already out cleaning and smoothing the sand, so any evidence outside of the brilliant lights was already gone. "Oh God Danno, where have you gone, aikane?"
The zipper sound caught his attention as the body bag was closed and carried up to the waiting gurney for transport to the morgue. Placing a hand on the attendant to stop his egress, he reached for the zipper and pulled it carefully down, exposing the face of Danno's attacker. His gasp of shock and surprise startled the men standing around him and all turned to stare at the suddenly pale face of the lead detective.
Concerned at the Boss's reaction, Chin stepped to Steve's side. "Steve, what's wrong?"
McGarrett swallowed audibly before he was able to answer, his eyes never leaving the bloodied face of the victim as he answered shakily, "This is Benny Kolola." He dropped the material of the bag back down with numb fingers as Chin grabbed his arm to steady him.
"Who's' Kolola, Steve, and what has he got to do with Danny?"
"Kolola was a sailor in the Navy and also the husband and father of two homicide victims when I was a criminal investigator in the Navy. His wife and young daughter were kidnapped tortured and raped before being strangled. The suspect was initially a young sailor who had befriended the family. Kolola was convinced that he was guilty. He had the time, opportunity and little in the way of an alibi but there was simply no motive. At first we initially agreed with Kolola's assumption but the evidence just didn't support it – fingerprints and hair found at the scene just did not belong to the sailor.
The sailor was never charged and Kolola believed that I was covering it up. He decided to take justice into his own hands and in front of several witnesses shot and killed the young man. He was convicted of manslaughter and given 29 years in Leavenworth. He always blamed me for his conviction. He claimed that it was my fault he had to carry out his own form of vigilante justice. He swore that one day he would make me suffer the way that he had."
Chin frowned, "But I still don't understand what that has to do with Danny and why Kolola attacked him."
"I heard that he was raped several times after he was imprisoned," Steve answered quietly, staring as the body was carried away towards the waiting ambulance parked beyond the sand. "I was also told that the attacks sent Kolola over the edge, he had to be transferred to a secure mental institution for his and the other prisoners' safety. The last I heard he was being held in strict isolation- too violent and too ill to be allowed into the hospital's general population."
"So do you think he escaped?" Chin asked.
McGarrett nodded, "And found out that I was here in the islands." Turning his attention back to the crime scene McGarrett demanded, "I want you to get back to the office and find out all you can about Kolola. I want the book on everything that has happened to him since his conviction. Find out when he left the hospital and when the Hell he got to the islands. I want to know where he lived while he was here and any acquaintances he has."
"Will do Boss," Chin answered as he turned and hurried away.
McGarrett turned towards the area where Kono was talking to a large Hawaiian in the shadow. As he moved closer to the duo he recognized the young surfer who had rescued Danny from the surf and warned him against causing Danno any more pain.
Kono glanced up as his boss approached and quickly made the introductions, "Steve, this is Tony Hapu, Tony this is Steve McGarrett."
Both men eyed each other coolly as Tony answered," We have already met."
Kono nodded uncertain of what the cause of the sudden hostility could be but chose to ignore it as he continued; "Danny was staying with Tony in the shack just up the beach, Steve. It was Tony who saw Danny getting attacked and then witnessed the death of the victim."
McGarrett nodded as he turned his attention to the large surfer. "I want you to start at the beginning and tell me what happened?"
Rubbing his hand nervously over his dark hair, Tony swallowed and nodded, "After I had cleaned up and treated Danny for his injuries that he got during the wipeout, I left him sleeping in the shack while I went down to the drug store to fill a prescription I wrote for antibiotics and painkillers for him."
McGarrett frowned and held up his hand, interrupting the young man's story, "What do you mean you treated him and then you wrote him some prescriptions?"
"Easy McGarrett," the young surfer held his hands up in surrender," I'm a qualified, bona fide doctor and am currently employed at Queens Hospital in the Emergency Rooms. Danny was injured in that wipeout. He suffered a concussion and needed several stitches in his leg. " Tony frowned, "He also has quite a nasty bruise to his back but he told me Berg knows about that." McGarrett nodded as Tony continued to talk. "Anyway he was really upset about something. I tried to get him to open up but he wouldn't. I waited until he fell asleep before I left him alone.
I was only gone for a few minutes, half an hour tops but when I returned the back door was open and Danny was missing. I know that when Danny's upset he likes to walk on the beach so I came out here to check on him. I saw him standing near the water but before I was able to call to him that's when I saw the guy. "
"You mean the victim?"
Tony nodded, "Yeah, he musta been hiding in the dunes, watching, cause he wasn't on the beach. One minute Danny was alone and the next- this guy snuck up behind him and grabbed him around the throat and chest. I yelled and started to run towards them as Danny started to struggle but the guy just ignored me, instead he punched Danny hard in the back and then dragged him back into the sand dunes. I heard Danny cry out and managed to find where they were" Tony paused and grew pale, "But I guess I froze when I saw what was happening." The young surfer swallowed hard and cleared his tight throat as he struggled to continue, "The guy was on top of Dan, trying to get his pants down. He…he was trying to…to…rape him."
McGarrett's heart ached for his young friend and for the man who now stood in front of him recounting the horror that he had just witnessed. He lightly touched the young doctor's arm and softly encouraged him "Go on."
Tony nodded and glanced uncomfortably towards Kono before looking back at the tall dark haired detective, "I yelled at him again, I think I told him to 'get off' or something. Danny was fighting, trying to get free but the guy was just too big… I saw Danny's hand in the sand, like he was trying to find something. He musta have managed to find a rock cause he hit the guy with it. The guy collapsed on top of him and Danny managed to roll free. It was self-defense McGarrett! Danny never meant to kill the guy." McGarrett nodded as Tony continued, "After Danny managed to get to his feet, he looked scared, terrified, I guess he panicked and ran. I tried to call out to him, to stop him but he just ran. I tried to follow but…" Tony sighed, "But the guy was still alive. I had to stay." Tony laughed humorlessly and closed his eyes as he shook his head, "I checked on him but there was nothing I could do, he died just as Danny disappeared into the dunes. You have to find Danny, McGarrett! It wasn't his fault. He's hurt and scared!"
Placing a hand on the young surfer's shoulder, McGarrett gave it a light squeeze, "We will, I promise."
The cool sand felt good against his heated skin as the young detective collapsed into a sand dune. He closed his eyes, gasping for breath as he tried to regain control over his pounding heart. The throbbing pain in his back and leg almost more than he could stand. Peering cautiously over the sand dune, fear clutched at him again as he saw the brilliant lights glowing in the distance.
Sliding down to where he could rest his throbbing back against the cool sand, he tried to pull together what had happened. It was like trying to remember a nightmare - vague, disjointed and terrifying. A dark form coming out of nowhere, intense pain, then something hard in his hand. Suddenly he was free, and had to get away, as far away as possible before the unseen apparition attacked him again.
Steve was already mad at him. What would he think of him now? Danny shivered as he sank deeper into the cool sand, closing his eyes against the pain that seemed to fill his whole body. He had to get away; away from the bright lights that stabbed the darkness, away from Steve, away from everyone who knew. He needed some time to think.
"Do you want me to put out an APB on Danny, Boss?" Chin asked softly as McGarrett stepped away from the young surfer who was still speaking with Kono, "Or maybe get some of the guys to help search for him?"
"No, not yet. He's frightened enough." McGarrett whispered, to ensure that they were not overheard. Calling more attention to Danno was not what he really wanted to do. "Let's give him some time "
Tony looked up, overhearing the whispered conversation and stepped closer."I don't think that's a good idea,"
Steve was in no mood for the surfer to be giving him advice. "And why is that?" He growled turning to glare at the young man.
Sensing the lead detective's irritation, Tony also was in no mood to be argued with, "Look McGarrett, I know you just think of me as a surfer, but I'm also a doctor. Danny is not well. He has fresh stitches in his leg and some degree of injury to his kidney. He shouldn't be out running around and he needs to be on antibiotics. The sooner he's found the better."
"He's right Boss, " Chin quietly agreed, "Danny's not thinking straight. He's scared and confused. He needs us to be looking out for him."
Not usually one to be indecisive, McGarrett found himself hesitating again as he looked from one anxious face to the other. "Yeah, Chin," he slowly agreed, "You're right. Get an APB out on Danno."
Chin nodded, aware of how hard a decision ordering the APB on his young friend had been for McGarrett. "Done Steve," he said softly as he stepped in front of the lead detective heading towards the cars.
McGarrett grabbed his arm and stopped him momentarily, "And after everything is wrapped up here, I want you and Kono to walk down the beach in the direction Danno went. Maybe he is still around..."
The Chinese detective nodded silently aware that the boss was concerned not only about the physical condition of their young friend.
"I'll ring around some of friends and surfers that Danny knows," Tony interrupted, "Maybe he has headed to one of their places." His gaze traveled down the dark stretch of sand, "but before I do, I'll take a look down the beach."
"Mahalo," Steve said softly, "And if you find him..."
Tony nodded, "I know, if I find him, I'll contact you immediately.
McGarrett nodded and watched as the young surfer/doctor carefully stepped over the tape that cordoned off the crime scene and disappeared into the darkness beyond. His attention was pulled back to the scene with a shout from Che, beckoning him to look at something. Reluctantly he turned and hurried across to where the small oriental forensic scientist was crouched. "What have you got?" He asked as he joined the smaller man.
Che looked up at the tall, dark haired detective standing beside him before returning his attention to the sand and pointing out a dark stain in the deep depression. "Blood and not from our vic."
"I think so Steve but I'll be able to tell you more after I get it back to the lab."
McGarrett frowned, "How can you be sure it's not the victim's?"
Che nodded at the impression and the blood that had soaked in near the top. "The vic was hit on the head but this blood stain is lower, by the depression I would say someone's upper leg and see how the bloodstain is spread. It looks like someone was bleeding heavily and rolled in the sand. I checked before they removed the body. The only bleeding injury the victim had was his head injury." Che answered as he carefully scoped up the red stained damp sand and placed it in a jar.
McGarrett swallowed hard and turned towards the darkness where his young friend had fled, his own chest tightening in fear at the thought of Danno out there somewhere alone frightened and hurt with no one to turn to. "Get it back to the lab Che. Let me know as soon as you can whose blood it is!"
"Will do, Steve," Che answered as he snapped off his gloves and placed the jar into his small bag, snapping it closed before he rose and hurried away.
McGarrett stood staring out at the darkness, "Why did you run, Aikane? It was self-defense. Why don't you trust me?"
"Danny! Danny! Where are you, man?" Walking down the deserted beach, Tony continued to call for his friend. The tractors had smoothed away any tracks and the crescent moon that reflected modestly off the white crests of the waves, did virtually nothing to illuminate the dark sand. His calls were met with nothing but the sound of the surf. Stopping, he looked around, but everything was engulfed in impenetrable shadows. Hating to give up, but fearing that he was wasting valuable time, he turned back toward the burning lights. Little did he how that only yards away his terrified friend huddled against the cooling dune, fear deafening him to all but the pounding of his heart. Worried, he turned back and headed towards his shack. Maybe Danny had decided to hide with a friend, at least it was a far more comforting thought than the one of Danny hiding out here in the dunes, hurt confused and frightened.
Everyone had left, save for the HPD officer who would spend the night outside the yellow-taped off area. The crime scene would be preserved until they could go over it one more time in the daylight. Walking slowly down the beach, McGarrett's eyes searched the shadows. 'Where are you, Danno?' He shivered and shrugged deeper into his suit coat against the damp chill. He felt so alone. He could only imagine how Danno must be feeling. Sighing, he turned away from the empty beach and headed back toward the parking lot.
Shivering against the cold sand, Danny Williams blinked in confusion as the first golden light of morning met his tired eyes. "Where…?" It took a moment before the swirling impressions of the previous night…the harsh lights illuminating the darkness… trying to escape from the terrifying phantom that had grabbed him from the shadows…solidified and slammed into his brain. Frantically pulling himself to a sitting position, he gasped at the pain that seemed to explode from everywhere….his head, his back, his leg.
Collapsing back against the cold sand, he closed his eyes, taking a deep breath to fight the nausea. Gaining a little more control, he looked down at the swollen and inflamed wound on his thigh. Fresh blood dribbled over dried blood and sand had embedded itself where the stitches had been pulled out. He sucked in a sharp breath as he tried to brush the sand from the wound, but some of the gritty irritant had already worked its way into the re-opened gash and was stuck fast to the already dried blood.
Knowing there was nothing he could do, he once again leaned back against the dune. Closing his eyes, he concentrated on the sound of the pounding surf that mirrored the pain that throbbed throughout his body as his tired mind drifted, like the waves, toward a peaceful nothingness.
When the young officer next opened his eyes the sun was high in the sky, the sand was beginning to warm and the sea birds circled overhead. Thirst over-rode pain as he staggered to his feet, trying to steady himself on the crumbing dune. As he had no money, he was grateful for the drinking fountain that stood invitingly outside the small, gray, concrete facility that the city had graciously provided for public use.
Leaning against the sink, he cupped his hand under the running water then poured it over his leg as he tried unsuccessfully once again to remove the painful grit from the open wound. Splashing some of the cool water on his flushed face, Danny limped slowly back to "his" sand dune, grateful that this part of the beach was relatively deserted as he settled tiredly against the now-warm sand.
The head of Five-O paced his office as the first rays of light tinted the sky. Despite the efforts of HPD, the surfer-doctor and his two other detectives, the search for their missing team member had turned up nothing.
A soft knock at his office door heralded the entry of Chin, Kono, Che and Bergman. All four men appeared as exhausted as he felt. There had been no time for sleep last night, not when Danno was out there somewhere, hurt, frightened and missing. Impatient and anxious, the lead detective did not even wait until the four men were settled before he snapped, "Ok gentlemen, what have you got for me?'
Unperturbed by the detective's gruffness, Bergman settled onto one of the high back white chairs in front of his desk and passing him a slim brown folder began. "The victim was killed with a single blow to the head, consistent with being hit with the rock that Che showed me. Cause of death was acute cerebral hemorrhage. The rock struck him in the temporal region and fractured his skull, a sliver of bone was dislodged and severed the temporal artery, Death was almost instantaneous. From the information I have about the positions of both the victim and Danny, I would say that the blow was consistent with someone defending themselves."
McGarrett nodded, "We have a witness who confirms that Doc. So what else have we got?"
"The blood that I showed you last night was A positive Steve, Danny's blood type." Che began, "And from the amount I collected, I would say that Danny was bleeding quite heavily."
"The surfer- doctor Danny was staying with…" McGarrett paused and looked expectantly towards his Hawaiian detective.
"Tony Hupa." Kono supplied.
"Tony Hupa said that he had stitched a deep cut on Danno's thigh that he sustained while surfing." Steve told the four men.
"Danny went surfing with a bruised kidney!" Bergman growled.
McGarrett nodded a confirmation as he continued, "If the stitches were torn during the struggle, could that explain the large amount of bleeding?"
"If the stitches were completely torn out and the wound re-opened." Doc answered worriedly, "If that's what has happened Steve then Danny is not only at risk for blood loss but also at high risk of an infection. His immune system is already weakened with the first attack. If he doesn't take his antibiotics then he is running the risk of becoming an extremely sick young man!"
"So that means we need to find him much sooner than later!" McGarrett growled as he turned to Kono, "Did Tony have any luck with Danno's friends?"
The Hawaiian detective shook his head. "No, Boss. No luck. An' between him an' me we've contacted every surfer on the island. Nothin', but they all promised to contact either Tony or me immediately if Danny shows up. We just told them Danny was injured and is confused and disorientated because of his head injury."
The lead detective slammed his hand on the desk. "Well he has to be SOMEWHERE! He's scared and he's hiding."
"And he's in no condition to get very far." Doc added.
McGarrett nodded at the far too accurate observation as he turned his attention towards his silent Chinese detective. "What did you find out about Kolola?"
Chin shifted uncomfortably in his chair as he opened up his notebook and looked up at the lead detective.
He did not need to refer to his notes; he knew the details almost intimately as he checked and double-checked their accuracy. "Kolola was released form the hospital about six months ago, Steve, the doctors claimed that he was totally cured and no longer a risk to himself or to the public. With his model behavior after the drugs they were giving him controlled his psychosis and with his 'good' behavior he was paroled almost immediately upon his return to the prison."
"Why wasn't I notified?" McGarrett demanded.
Chin glanced at the other three men in the room in discomfort before he turned back to his boss, "The doctors no longer considered him a serious risk to you and believed it would be in Kolola's best interest that he be allowed to start a brand-new life with no baggage from his past to hold him back."
McGarrett almost choked on his surprise, "What the Hell do they mean no baggage from his past! My God the man lost a family, killed an innocent man and then was raped several times in prison! How did they expect him just to forget that and start anew! What the Hell were they thinking? Damn psychiatrists!"
Chin shrugged, unable to answer the rhetorical question as he continued, "Kolola headed here days after his release. He rented a room on Hotel Street. I managed to contact the manager earlier this morning. He's given us permission to search the room. He claims that Kolola was quiet and kept to himself, had no friends or acquaintances that he knows of. He also mentioned that Kolola seemed fascinated with the palace. That he went almost daily on tourist excursions here."
"I bet he was!" McGarrett muttered,
Chin nodded in agreement to his boss's unspoken belief in what truly fascinated the insane man as he continued, "He also apparently loved the sea. The manager said that he was forever showing him photos of surfers that he had taken but there was one surfer that he seemed to photograph more than the rest."
"Let me guess, the surfer had blue eyes and curly sandy colored hair?" McGarrett asked sarcastically.
Chin nodded. "The manager has told me that the photos are all over the walls in Kolola's room. I thought I would take Che after the meeting is over and check it out."
"Ring Dr. Bishop and update her with what's happened and ask her to tag along. Also tell her I would like to get her opinion on Kolola's state of mind when he attacked Danno yesterday. And her advice on how we should handle Danny once we find him."
The Chinese detective nodded his head," Will do, Boss."
"Ok Chin, get going and Kono, I want you to try all of Danno's friends again, tell them we need to find Danny urgently!"
"On it, Boss."
Once the two detectives had left, Steve directed his attention back to Doc. "Do you have any other thoughts or suggestions?"
"Only that we need to find him fast, Steve. An open wound is going to get infected, and his kidney was pretty badly bruised. There's no way of knowing if he has done more damage." Doc answered.
"I'm trying Doc, I'm trying." Steve answered quietly "This rock isn't that big, but I just don't know where else to look. Danno has lived here all his life. He's a surfer. He knows all the nooks and crannies. If he doesn't want to be found, he's not going to be."
Doc's look was grim as his eyes met Steve's, "If Danny's in as bad of shape as I'm afraid he is, he's not going to stay hidden much longer."
"I know Doc," Steve answered quietly as he turned and stared out the lanai doors," It just a matter of finding where he is hiding!"
"I know, Steve. Just make it soon."
"I will Doc, I promise."
The ringing of his private line broke the silence, "McGarrett."
"Steve, I'm over here at Kolola's place. You might want to come over and take a look at this."
"Thanks Chin, I'm on my way." Hanging up the phone he turned to Doc. "Chin's over at Koloa's, he wants me to join him." He explained as he grabbed his coat and rushed from the room.
The calling of the sea birds invaded his troubled sleep and pulled him back to his reality. Opening his eyes, he blinked, the brightness of the sun lit sand that surrounded him hurt his eyes. He shifted in discomfort and cried out as the small movement caused his body to erupt in agony as he struggled to stay conscious.
The tropical sun was beating down on him when awareness returned a few minutes later, making his reddened sun burnt skin sizzle with its intensity but the heat on his body did not seem to be as intense as the heat that he felt burning on the inside. His thigh and back now throbbed relentlessly. His head ached and he was dizzy and nauseous. As much as he hated going back to where the lights had blazed through the darkness such a long…short?… time ago, he needed help. He would go back to the shack and see if Tony was there.
Stepping into the small crowded room, McGarrett was almost overpowered by the stale odor of sweat, cigarette smoke and spilled alcohol that permeated the air. Taking as small breaths as possible to minimize the smell, he stepped across to where Chin, Che and Dr. Bishop stood studying the photos and newspaper clippings that lined the wall.
Neither his detective, the forensic expert nor the Psychiatrist had seemed to notice his arrival; their attention appeared to be riveted to one particular photo. His breath rushed out of his lungs in one audible gasp as he joined them and found himself staring at the photo that held their attention. The 10' x10' color photo showed Danny either unconscious or asleep in his bed and leaning above him, grinning at the camera while holding a large knife to his throat was Kolola. More disturbing was Danny's sheet had been pulled back; reveling Danny had been naked. A shiver traversed Steve's spine as he found himself staring at where Kolola's other hand was resting on his friend's naked body.
"It's dated a month ago!" Chin murmured, unable to draw his eyes away from the horrifying image to look at his boss who had just joined them.
"My God, he had access to Danny's apartment for more than a month" McGarrett growled, "and none of us noticed!" "We didn't know that there was even a threat, boss." Chin answered softly, "Danny didn't even know or at least he never mentioned anything had happened."
Leaning closer to examine the photo, Dr Bishop interrupted, "Maybe Danny didn't know. By the looks of the photo it's possible Danny was drugged beforehand."
Scenes from the past month suddenly stole across Steve's consciousness...mornings here and there where Danno came to the office looking tired and pale, but when asked, Danny just shrugged it off saying he'd stayed up too late. Swallowing hard, Steve turned towards the psychiatrist, "He was being drugged right under our noses and we didn't even notice. We all just assumed that he was a little run down. Damn I should have been more aware!" McGarrett continued to stare at the photo, "But how? How could he have drugged Danno?"
"Boss," Chin quietly reminded," all of us worked with Danny and we all thought the same thing...all the long hours had just caught up with him. There was no way we would have even thought something was going on."
"It doesn't matter now how he was drugging Danny." Bishop interrupted softly, "what we need to concentrate on is how much contact Kolola had with him and how to help Danny deal with it." Dr. Bishop scanned the photos that covered the walls," I don't think it would be wise to allow him to see these." The two detectives nodded their agreement, each feeling guilty that they had missed the important signs that their young colleague was in danger as Doctor Bishop glanced at the other photos and clippings that lined the walls. "It looks like Kolola has kept a photographed timeline."
McGarrett looked at her quizzically, "A timeline for what?"
"His revenge." Bishop answered succinctly as she walked along the wall, her fingers tracing the dates stamped on the right hand bottom of each photograph and clipping until she stopped about halfway along the wall. "The revenge timeline begins here with a picture of a happy person, innocently surfing, eating, enjoying life. They proceed to an unseen threat...Danny innocently sleeping, with a knife at his throat… then the ultimate in power, control and the destruction of that innocence...Danny being raped. And all the time the people around him going about their business, working and playing while the threat closed in and destroyed all of them."
Chin frowned, slightly confused at the psychiatrist's words but as he began to study the photos in front of him, even he could see the descent into Kolola's madness. The first photos showed a happy family man, surrounded by a young wife and child but as he stepped along the wall, the photo story changed to newspaper clippings of heartbreak and murder and the feeling of betrayal by the legal system, ending up in the murder of an innocent man. Several hand scribbled notes clearly proclaimed the insane man's belief of who had betrayed him. He blamed Stephen McGarrett, lead investigator in the navy case that investigated the death of his wife and child and had reached the conclusion that the young sailor accused was in fact innocent. Another hand written note was taped to the bottom of a picture of his family, swearing that their deaths would be avenged, and the man who let their murderer walk away would be made to pay.
Posted next to these were doctors' reports that explained his severe mental 'breakdown' and the reasons behind it. Each psychiatrist had declared that the violent death of his family and the rapes he had endured after his conviction for the manslaughter of the man he believed had been the murderer had led to a total psychotic breakdown causing him to be violent to himself and others but with the intervention of appropriate counseling and drugs the breakdown had been reversed and Kolola was now declared a useful and harmless member of society. The letters also recommended clemency be considered during the next parole hearing and recommended that Kolola be allowed to have a new start.
As McGarrett read the last letter he shook his head in disbelief, completely at a loss for words.
A parole release form held pride of place next and was quickly followed by a map of Hawaii- Honolulu encircled with red with the hand written words scribbled across the map declaring 'The traitor is found!' More photos and clippings containing every member of the Five O team and focusing for several photos on McGarrett followed this.
"He was watching you," Bishop explained as she fingered the photos, "He was looking for something to bring you to your knees, to hurt you as much as he had been hurt!"
"Well if he knew so much about me why he didn't he just come after me? Why did he go after Danno?"
Bishop's eyes were now filled with compassion, "Because when his family was murdered, they suffered physically. Kolola suffered emotionally. When he was in jail, he suffered the pain and humiliation of being raped. His revenge was making you suffer the same pain and humiliation he felt by taking it out on someone you care about." She paused and added softly, "Sometimes it hurts more that way."
"And he discovered that Danny was the perfect target, Boss, " Chin announced quietly as he pointed to a photo further along the wall.
Stepping closer to the photo that Chin pointed out, McGarrett could feel the hot bile rise in his throat. The photo was of both him and Danno taken at a crime scene, his hand resting lightly on his young detective's back. Danny was encircled in red ink that had torn the paper and the words Achilles heel was scratched in blood red across Danny's chest.
McGarrett could taste the hot bile as it rose in his throat and he turned away from the sickening sight of the photographs.
"I'll photograph the scene Steve and take fingerprints just to confirm that Kolola was working alone." Che announced quietly as he watched the lead detective's reactions. "Why don't you leave the handling of the scene to Chin and I and go find Danny, he needs you more than we do at the moment. I'll give you a full report as soon as we are done."
"Yeah, Che, Maybe you're right. I need to find Danno," The dark- haired detective pulled the door closed tightly behind him. At this moment he didn't care to see any more.
With a brief nod of farewell towards Che and Chin, Dr. Bishop followed McGarrett from the room, grabbing his arm just out in the hallway, stopping him before he could flee. "I think I'll accompany you back to the office Steve, "She stated firmly, "We need to discuss what we just witnessed in there."
McGarrett withdrew his arm roughly, "I'm fine Doctor, there is nothing to discuss."
"Steve if you really want to help Danny when we find him, you need to be dealing with your own guilt and rage over what has happened and we need to have a united plan on Danny's treatment and what he is to be told!" The psychiatrist replied softly, "If you don't want to do this for your own good than at least do it for Danny's sake. After all he is the real victim in this!"
McGarrett began walking slowly out of the building and toward his car, knowing that what Dr. Bishop said was right. Danno was going to need help dealing with what had happened. "What do you suggest, Doctor?"
Dr. Bishop kept pace with him as he walked. "First of all he needs to understand, as you do also, that this is not his fault...and it's not your fault. He did nothing wrong. You did nothing wrong. This is the tragic result of a sick mind."
McGarrett nodded but did not comment as he opened the door of the car for the petite doctor, closing it after she slipped into the passenger side. This was his fault he thought grimly as he walked around to the other side of the car, opening the door and sliding behind the steering wheel.
"We also need to discuss the best way of reassuring Danny that his reactions to everything that has happened is normal and try and get him to open up " The doctor continued, ignoring McGarrett's guilty silence as the detective revved the engine and pulled the large car away from the curb, spinning the wheels as he pulled into the traffic. "For Danny to recover from this we need to be totally honest, not only about the case but also about our own reactions and emotions and why things have been handled the way they have been."
"The truth, Doctor," Steve growled as he strangled the steering wheel, "is that Danno was made to pay the price for a crime he didn't commit. You can rationalize and twist it around any way you want, but that's the hard truth. And as for emotions," he paused and took a deep breath, "Somehow 'I'm sorry' just doesn't seem to do much." Any more conversation was silenced as McGarrett turned and concentrated on the road.
"Got to get to back to Tony's. Got to get help," The words echoed through Danny's mind over and over as he struggled to sit up. He cried out in agony as a sharp, tearing pain tore through his lower back and radiated through his entire body. He fell back against the warm sand, struggling to catch his breath as the darkness slowly claimed him into its protective hold.
When the young officer next opened his eyes the sun was higher in the sky, the sand was hot and the sea birds circled overhead. Thirst over-rode pain as he staggered to his feet, trying to steady himself on the crumbing dune. After several painful and dizzying tries, Danny finally got to his feet after burrowing his hands far enough into the dune to get a grip on the sand that continually crumbled and shifted beneath him. Leaning against the mound, he closed his eyes and took deep breaths until he felt steady enough to walk; his first stop, the low gray building with the welcoming drinking fountain waiting out front.
Making his way down to where the water lapped the shore, he limped painfully along the wet sand where it was easier to walk. Oblivious to the bright blue sky and green foaming waves, his sole focus in life at this moment was to keep putting one foot in front of the other. He didn't realize he'd come so far that terrifying night that now seemed so long ago. He was beginning to feel that he couldn't take another step when Tony's shack seemed to materialize out of nowhere. Heedless of the tears of relief that now ran down his exhausted face, he entered through the same back door from where he had innocently walked out just twenty-four hours ago and into his own private hell.
"Tony?" The silent stillness told him that he was the only one there. Shivering, he pulled an old blanket off the back of the couch, wrapped it around himself and gratefully curled up on the soft, worn cushions.
Stepping through the door, it took Tony's eyes a moment to adjust from the sunny glare to the dimness of the room when he saw a blanket-wrapped form on the couch. "What the...Danny?" He crossed the room in just a couple of steps and reached the sleeping figure.
Danny was shivering and completely covered with the blanket. Sitting on the edge of the couch, Tony could feel the heat as it radiated through the thin covering. The movement pulled the ill detective from his restless slumber and he opened his eyes to see his very concerned friend. "Hey Tony," he whispered, hoping to keep some of the pain at bay by not moving.
"Danny, man, where have you been? We've been lookin' everywhere for you!"
"I...I was just...just on the beach." He gasped as the slight movement sent pain shooting through him.
Danny's flushed face shone with perspiration as he shivered and pulled the blanket more tightly around him, crying out as the small movement re awoke the agony in his back and his leg.
"We need to get you to the hospital, man. Get you checked out by Berg and myself."
"NO! No, please Tony, I can't! I don't want Steve to know."
Over the course of the last hours Tony had come to see Steve McGarrett in a slightly different light. This man cared deeply about their mutual friend and was doing everything possible to find him. "Danny, I don't know what the problem was with you two but let me tell ya, the guy's been goin' crazy. He's been lookin' EVERYWHERE for you, man. You gotta let him know you're ok."
Danny closed his eyes and shuddered, pulling the thin blanket tighter against him as Tony suddenly rose and hurried out of the shack. He knew Steve was worried, probably turning the whole island upside down, but to let Steve know where he was...what would he do? Moving slightly caused the pain to once again tear through his body, causing him to cry out.
Tony had grabbed his medical bag from the car and just re entered the room, "Danny!" He hurried to his friend's side. "I'm gonna check you out, man," He warned gently as he put a thermometer in Danny's mouth and wrapped the blood pressure cuff around his arm. Releasing the pressure, he frowned at the result as he removed the thermometer from his friend's mouth, again not happy with what he saw.
"I'm gonna turn you just a little bit so I can check your back. Ready?"
Danny closed his eyes and nodded slowly, gasping as Tony began the slight movement. The surfer-doctor sucked in a sharp breath at the sight of the deep, massive bruising that covered Dan's lower back, then gently laid his friend back in his previous position before he quickly checked the bleeding gash in Danny's leg. The stitches were torn and the area red, swollen and inflamed, sand and grit was deeply embedded- with the obvious infection raging there, it was no surprise Danny was running such a high fever. Straightening up, Tony sighed and announced softly. "We need to get you to the hospital Danny, your leg's infected and I think you are bleeding internally. You need more medical help than I can give you here."
"NO! No hospital. Just...just let me rest for a while. I'll...I'll be okay."
Tony knew he had to get his friend to the hospital, but didn't want to force him. Bergman had filled him in on what had happened to the young detective less then a week ago – the rape, McGarrett's refusal to stop investigating the case even though Danny had explicitly told him he did not want to pursue it. Tony shook his head as he stared at the injured man lying on his sofa. No wonder Danny was hiding, he felt he had no control in his life, and Tony knew how important it was for his friend to regain that control.
"Okay Danny, but at least let me call McGarrett. Please, man, the guys goin' crazy."
Closing his eyes, Danny slowly nodded, knew that he owed it to Steve to at least let him know where he was.
Getting Danny's permission was all he needed as he grabbed the phone.
The pacing was interrupted by Jenny's voice on the intercom, "Steve. Tony Hapu is on line one."
Steve snatched up the phone, "McGarrett."
Danny's here at my place. He wanted you to know." Hupa's voice said softly.
"I'm on my way..."
"Wait! Danny didn't say you could come over. Let me check with him first."
"What do you mean...?"
"Trust me McGarrett. Just hang on."
Putting his hand over the receiver Tony spoke softly, "Danny, McGarrett wants to come and see you. Is that okay?"
Danny thought for a moment, wincing again as the pain lanced through him as he whispered, "Yeah. It's okay."
Returning his attention back to the phone, Tony smiled reassuringly at the ill man on the sofa as he announced, "Danny says it's okay."
Steve couldn't believe what he was hearing. He didn't need permission..."I'm on my way."
Slamming the phone down, he rushed from the office pausing only long enough to inform Jenny. "Danno is at Tony Hapu's place. Let Chin and Kono know." As he pulled the door open he added, "And tell Doc."
"Right, Boss." Grabbing the phone to call HPD dispatch she breathed a sigh of relief. 'Thank God Danny was safe.'
Skidding to the curb, Steve bailed out of the car and nearly ran to Tony's place, bursting through the door without even bothering to knock. He stopped at the sight that met his eyes. Tony was sitting on a stool taking the pulse of someone wrapped in a blanket. Approaching more slowly, he saw the flushed face and sandy curls of his Second-in-command. "Danno?"
Danny turned his head at the sound of the voice, gasping at the slight movement as he whispered, "Steve."
Rising from the stool, Tony motioned Steve to the side as he whispered, "Danny's bleeding internally from that kidney. We need to get him to the hospital but he won't go. Maybe you can convince him."
Steve glared angrily at the young man, "Well if he needs to be in the hospital why the hell didn't you call an ambulance," he hissed as he grabbed for the phone. Tony grabbed his arm. "Don't you get it McGarrett? Danny is tired of people running all over him, telling him what's best for him. HE needs to make the choices. Danny's not stupid. Give him a chance and let HIM decide."
Taking a deep breath, Steve nodded, "Okay."
Approaching the sofa he sat on the rickety wooden stool that Tony had just abandoned. He could see immediately how ill his friend was, and it was all he could do not to call an ambulance, but decided it was in his aikane's best interest to just go along with the program...for now.
He placed his hand on Danny's trembling arm, alarmed at the heat that radiated from his young friend's body, "Hi Danno."
Danny opened his eyes and Steve could see the pain and fear that existed there.
"I was worried about you, Aikane."
Danny gasped in pain as he moved slightly, "I'm...I'm okay,"
Steve swallowed and glanced at Tony who nodded encouragingly. "Thanks for letting me know you were here and…and letting me come see you. Danno, you're sick and you really need to go to the hospital..."
"NO!" Danny gasped, "No hospital."
"Danno," Steve squeezed his arm gently, "The investigation has been dropped. The threat is gone. No one will do anything you don't want. I promise."
Danny looked uncertainly at Steve then trained his gaze on Tony who smiled and nodded. "You promise?" He whispered, searching Steve's face for reassurance that he was telling the truth
"Yes, Aikane, I promise.' Steve answered softly, his heart breaking at the lack of faith that he was being honest. He felt his own chest tighten in anguish at how much damage he had done by ignoring Danno's request to just let the case drop but he knew he had been acting in Danno's best interests. Squeezing Danny's arm again, he blinked away the tears that threatened to fall as he pleaded, "Now will you please let us take you to the hospital? Please?"
The young detective thought about it for a minute then nodded, "But no ambulance."
This time it was Steve's turn to look at Tony, who nodded. "Whatever you say, Aikane. No ambulance."
Steve turned to ask the young surfer /doctor to contact Doc and tell him they were on their way but Tony was already on the phone to Berman advising him they were coming in and what he should expect before slamming the phone down and returning to Danny's side, checking his pulse and his temp with the back of his hand against the young man's forehead. The look on the young doctor's face warned McGarrett that time was of the essence. "We'll take my car." Steve instructed as he pulled the blanket tighter around the shivering form and slid his arms underneath him, "You ready?" At Danny's nod, Steve lifted him as carefully as possible from the sagging couch, but despite his efforts a cry of agony escaped from his friend as the pain tore through his body. "Sorry Danno."
The two men slid the ill detective onto the back seat of Steve's car. Tony climbed in the back seat beside him as McGarrett ran around to the driver's side and slid behind the wheel. Grabbing Danny tightly, Tony steadied the young man while Steve burned rubber and hit the siren. The trip to Queen's was made in record time.
The Emergency was a flurry of activity as nurses fussed around with drips, oxygen and the various machines now connected to the patient. McGarrett stood back against the door where he had been quickly sequestered after their arrival watching the soft conversation that was taking place between Bergman and Tony. Although he could not overhear the whispered conversation, he knew by the grim looks on both physicians' faces that the examination had not gone well. His attention was drawn back to the semi-conscious man on the gurney and he resisted the urge to ignore Bergman's orders and cross the room to be a little closer.
Danny moaned in pain as he rolled his head from side to side, mumbling incoherently as the young nurse grabbed his hand and held it as she adjusted the oxygen mask that now covered his lower face and whispered reassuringly.
The two doctors nodded in what McGarrett could only assume was some type of agreement before both turned and glanced at the patient. "I'll contact the OR and tell them that you are on your way up, "Tony told Doc as he reached for the phone, "Kellerman is standing by to assist with the surgery."
Bergman nodded his thanks as he stepped towards the anxious man standing silently at the door.
"Doc?" Steve asked as the coroner reached him, "What's going on? How is he?"
"He's not good," Doc answered truthfully glancing again at the restless young man on the gurney before returning his attention back to the worried lead detective. His kidney has been torn and he is bleeding internally. We need to get him up to the OR to try and stop the bleeding. I'm hopeful that we may be able to repair the tear."
"And if you can't?" Steve asked softly his stomach churning at the thought of the answer.
"We will remove it." Doc answered succinctly. "We also need to clean out the wound in his leg and restitch it. I'm not going to lie to you Steve; Danny is a very sick young man. On top of his injuries his body is being overwhelmed with the infection in his leg and with dehydration. We need to commence him on some heavy-duty antibiotics and get him rehydrated but first and most importantly we need to get his bleeding under control."
Leaning against the doorway, Steve took a deep breath to try to calm his frayed nerves. "Can I see him before you take him to surgery?"
Bergman nodded, "I'm not sure just how coherent he is." he warned as he stepped aside allowing McGarrett to move towards the patient.
Stepping to the side of the gurney, Steve put a hand gently on his friend's arm, alarmed at the feel of the hot, dry skin. "Danno? Danno, I'm here, Aikane. "
Danny opened his eyes and squinted up at the blurry figure that hovered above him, drawing back in fright as he cried out in agony as his back erupted in pain. "No! Leave me alone!" he whispered.
"Excuse me." One of the nurses stepped in to check the patient, causing Steve to unwillingly release his hold and step back. "We're going to be taking him to the OR now."
McGarrett swallowed hard and blinked back the tears as he nodded and stepped back, watching as Danny was wheeled out of the room. He never noticed the young surfer /doctor watching him or the sympathy in the other man's eyes.
This was the one thing that McGarrett hated above everything. He hated the waiting; the not knowing precisely what was happening or how his best friend was doing. He hated the helplessness and the total inability to do anything. He rose from the hard plastic chair and began to pace again. It had been four hours since Danny had been wheeled into the Operating Room - four hours of not knowing anything.
Chin and Kono had both arrived to wait for word but both men had left several minutes ago with the excuse they wanted to search for fresh coffee. Waiting was hard enough but their boss's incessant pacing was starting to wear on their nerves and they needed to give him some space. Tony was the only one who had remained in the waiting room with their boss, shaking his head at Kono's offer for him to join them in their temporary escape.
The departure of the two detectives left the other two men alone, the tense silence suddenly needing to be filled.
Steve continued to pace the small room almost as if he was trying to ignore the other man's presence until the younger man noisily cleared his throat and broke the almost unbearable silence. "I've known Danny a long time. He's a good guy."
"The best," Steve agreed quietly.
Tony nodded, "And you really do care about him, don't you?" McGarrett eyed the younger man suspiciously as Tony shifted in his seat and softly continued as he looked steadily at the head of the State Police. "You know Danny wouldn't say what was wrong, but he was obviously upset. Berg told me what happened. Now I understand why Danny was so scared. He didn't want anyone to know. And who could blame him?"
Steve could feel the anger rising, "The animal that attacked Danno could not be allowed to get away with what he did..."
"But Danny didn't want to pursue it!" Tony interrupted firmly, restraining his own anger, "And you did anyway, against his wishes."
"I was only doing what was best for him!" Steve returned hotly.
"Danny knows what's best for him!" Tony paused and continued more softly, "Look Mr. McGarrett, I want what's best for Danny, too, but I also respect him, and that means I respect his wishes as well, regardless of whether or not I agree."
Steve sat there silently, feeling the anger melt into uncertainty. He cared about Danno as though he were his own flesh and blood. He had a responsibility as the big brother. He was only doing what was best for him...wasn't he?
Tony rose from his chair and headed towards the door, deciding that the lead detective needed some time alone to think, "I know you care about Danny, but you need to respect him, too. Think about it Mr. McGarrett." He said softly as he left the room in search of Kono, Chin and some fresh coffee as McGarrett stared after him.
McGarrett continued to stare at the empty doorway. Just who was this guy anyway, telling HIM what was best for Danno! Danno was his kaikaina and he had a responsibility to look out for him, even when he didn't want it. ... I also respect him, and that means I respect his wishes as well, regardless of whether or not I agree. Tony's words echoed disturbingly in his mind. He DID respect Danno, but if what Danno wanted was not what was best for him, then it was up to the big brother to step in and take over...wasn't it? Besides he didn't force Danno, he guided him. Didn't he?
Before he could ponder the question any further, his thoughts were interrupted as Doc stepped into the doorway. The crusty physician looked exhausted as he tugged the blue surgical cap from his head. "We managed to stop the bleeding without removing the kidney," he began before McGarrett could ask any questions. "But that young man really gave us a run for our money!"
"So he's going to be alright?" Steve asked as Bergman brushed past him and headed towards the hot jug half full of black coffee that sat on the small table.
Bergman hesitated and placed the mug he had just picked up back down onto the table before he slowly turned around. "He's a very lucky young man that you and Tony managed to convince him to come to the hospital when you did Steve. Another hour or two and we would be having this conversation around my autopsy table."
McGarrett blanched at the information, suddenly feeling as though he needed to sit down. "It was that close?"
Bergman nodded and turned to pour two mugs of coffee before he picked up both mugs and joined McGarrett on the hard plastic chairs. "It was that close, Steve," he confirmed softly. "And he is still not out of the woods yet!"
Steve stared at the dark contents of the mug he had just accepted but made no effort to drink it. "How bad?"
"The kidney was severely torn, we managed to repair it but that doesn't mean that we have saved it. Only time will tell if it's going to fully recover." Doc began quietly, shaking his head before taking a sip of the black brew, "Then we have the complications of the blood loss, dehydration, the infected leg and the sunburn and exposure. He's in real trouble Steve, I'm just not sure if he is strong enough for his body to cope with the trauma."
The dark haired detective stared at the Coroner in fear, "You mean?"
"There is a possibility that Danny might not survive, especially if the infection isn't brought under control."
"How long before you'll know?" McGarret managed to whisper.
"The next twenty four hours are critical. If Danny responds to the treatment and the antibiotics he has a chance to make a full recovery." Doc answered quietly, "As for whether we have saved the kidney- well that's just a waiting game for now."
The lead detective nodded, unable to find any words as fear closed in on him. "When can I see him?"
Glancing down at his watch, Bergman answered, "Give them another few minutes to get him settled in the Surgical ICU, Steve and then I'll take you up. "
McGarrett set the untouched cup of coffee on the table. "Thanks Doc." He hesitated, and then added. "How long will it take to know if his kidney is going to be all right?"
"We will need to monitor it closely for the next week or so...as for long term damage such as scarring won't be evident for a few weeks."
Steve hated the vagaries of the medical profession. "What do you mean long term damage? Is Danno going to have health problems from this?"
"The long term effects could be minimal or he could have no long term complications at all." Doc answered hedging but at McGarrett's expectant look for an honest answer, continued, "But there is also the risk of high blood pressure or even future kidney failure- these complications although rare do happen Steve but what we need to watch for now is the kidney does heal and that the shock doesn't send him into kidney failure."
"I appreciate your honesty, Doc."
Doc nodded as he reached for McGarrett's untouched mug of coffee and rose, placing both mugs back on the table, "Well they should have him settled by now. Shall we go and see him?"
"Yeah, Doc," Steve said, but made no move until Doc took him gently by the arm and led him toward the door. "I'll leave word with the nurses to tell the boys where we are." Doc continued as he guided McGarrett out of the door.
Steve hesitated at the door of the ICU room, finding himself suddenly unnerved by the sight of his youngest detective. Danny was lying on his left side, propped into position by strategically placed pillows that prevented him from rolling onto his back or front, a myriad of tubes and wires seem to be connected to his body, some disappearing out of sight over the edge of the bed while others containing blood or clear fluids rose to the three drips suspended above. A heart monitor beeped on the small bedside table, reassuring visitors with its soft regular beeps as the small green bleep danced across its screen.
Steve reluctantly approached the bed. As much as he wanted the reassuring physical contact, he was afraid to touch his young officer, not wanting to cause him any more pain. Lifting his hand to lightly place it on his friend's shoulder, Steve hesitated as he stared at the sun burnt and blistered skin. He hadn't noticed the reddened and damaged skin during the desperate race to the hospital and even though Doc had mentioned it, he had not really expected the sunburn to be as serious as this.
Leaning slightly against the bedrails, Steve studied the flushed and sunburned face, finally reaching nervously forward and tentatively touching the curly hair." I'm sorry aikane that you felt you had to run. I only did what I thought was the best for you…maybe I was wrong." McGarrett shook his head as he blinked away the tears, hearing Tony's words echoing in his ears. I also respect him, and that means I respect his wishes as well, regardless of whether or not I agree. "Please don't give up on me. Not now Danno I have so much I need to explain!"
Chin, Kono and Tony stood watching through the window of the small ICU room. They watched in silence as McGarrett placed a hand on the patient's curly hair and whisper something to the critically ill man before turning and pulling a chair closer to the bed. Sitting down, the lead detective placed his hand lightly on Danny's hand and continued to talk softly to the unconscious man.
"Kolola couldn't have planned his revenge any better." Chin murmured as he stared at the two men in the room, "He realized that Danny was Steve's Achilles' heel. He wins either way- if Danny dies Steve will never forgive himself and if Danny lives..."
"Danny may not be able to forgive Steve." Kono finished the sentence.
"I don't know," Tony murmured keeping his eyes on the scene in the ICU, "Danny isn't the type to hold a grudge, but maybe McGarrett will learn something from this."
Kono glanced at Tony, "Maybe. It ain't easy for the Boss to admit he's wrong."
"It's not always easy to admit you made a mistake but if he wants to set things right between himself and Dan than that's what he needs to do." Tony answered quietly, "Danny needs his support and understanding now more than ever but Danny also needs to be given back the control that he has lost and to do that Steve needs to let him make some of the decisions instead of doing what he thinks is best for him!"
"That's not gonna be easy." Chin said quietly, "Steve can be pretty protective of Danny."
The young doctor smiled sadly as he turned towards the two detectives. "I know Bruddah, I have already had a run in with Danny's 'big brother'."
"Awue!" Kono murmured, "That wouldn't have been fun! Da Boss takes that role seriously!"
"Tell me about it!" Tony laughed.
The other men chuckled in agreement, "Yeah, that's Steve all right."
Their soft laughter was interrupted by a loud alarm from within the room and they all turned in unison to see McGarrett jump from his chair and lean over the patient in the bed, fear evident in his face as the alarm continued its shriek. Turning away from the two detectives Tony ran into the room followed closely by two young nurses and a second doctor.
"Danno! " Steve gasped in terror as the beeps of the heart monitor began to increase alarmingly before the shrill alarm began. "Danno, it's okay. You're safe, Aikane!" Steve tried to reassure the frightened young man as he rose and reached for Danny's shoulder as Danny's eyes opened wide in abject fear and scanned the room. "You're safe!"
Steve was abruptly pushed aside as Tony and the other medical staff rushed into the room. "Steve what happened?" Tony asked as he reached the bed and started to examine the terrified patient.
"I...I'm not sure." McGarrett shook his head as he watched as Danny cried out and tried to push Tony's hands away. "One moment he was asleep and the next he was..."
"Its okay, Steve," Tony quickly reassured the anxious man as the nurse silenced the alarm. "He's having a panic attack. He's been badly traumatized. This is going to happen." He turned back to the agitated patient and held him to prevent him from moving as he whispered soft words of reassurance over Danny's desperate cries to be left alone.
The second doctor drew up a syringe and injected something into Danny's IV line as he murmured to Tony, "I just gave him 5 mgs of Valium. That should help settle him."
Tony nodded as Danny's terrified struggle to get free slowly subsided and stopped and his eyes slowly closed. Waiting a moment to ensure Danny was fully sedated Tony finally released Danny and turned back to Steve. "He's going to experience flashbacks of the attacks and panic attacks, especially with the fever Steve." Tony explained as the other medical staff quietly left the room. "All we can do for now is to try and keep him calm with medication and reassurance. Once he is a little bit stronger, he is going to need counseling." Turning fully towards the lead detective, Tony continued, "I'm sure Berg has already spoken to you about it. Maybe even suggested someone?"
Steve shifted uncomfortably. He didn't like psychiatrists regardless of how necessary they might be, but knew that regardless of his personal feelings, he had to do what was best for Danno, "Yeah, he suggested Dr. Bishop. Danno has already had a session with her."
"Do you know how it went?"
McGarrett shifted uncomfortably as he ran a hand down his face before he turned and walked to the window. "She tried to tell me that Danno felt like he had lost all control that he was at risk of baulking if I didn't allow him to make his own decisions."
The young doctor nodded but didn't comment as McGarrett shook his head, falling silent for a moment lost in his own private thoughts as he turned and stared at the sleeping man in the bed, "Doc is right, Danno does need someone more professional than me to talk to. Someone who knows how to help him deal with what happened."
"He needs someone like that but he also needs a friend- a 'big brother' to help him, to guide him through the next few weeks, Steve, an anchor he knows he can depend on."
Steve could feel the tears burning the backs of his eyes at this gentle recognition of their relationship and what Danno meant to him, "Mahalo Tony but I'm not sure he will want that anchor to be me. Not after everything that happened."
Tony frowned at the cryptic words but any questions he had were silenced as Chin and Kono stood anxiously at the door, waiting to be reassured that their colleague was out of any danger. He turned towards the two anxious detectives and smiled, "Danny just had a bad dream, guys, it's to be expected. You can have five minutes with him no longer but Steve I'm sure Berg already has made it clear but I'll make sure the nurses know that the visiting restrictions don't extend to you."
"Thank you," McGarrett said softly as he watched his two detectives standing by the bedside of their young colleague.
"Danny was admitted to the ICU early this morning after undergoing emergency surgery for a torn kidney and infected leg." Doc told the psychiatrist quietly handing her the medical chart, "His condition is still very much touch and go with the infection and shock but I am also concerned with his mental well being as well at the moment. I received a call from the resident in ICU, that's why I called you here to the ward for this consult. They had to sedate Danny after he suffered a panic attack."
Dr. Bishop glanced through the chart, "Is anyone staying with him? He really shouldn't be alone."
Bergman gave her a small smile, "Who do you think is with him? You know it would take a herd of elephants to pry Steve from Danny's side."
Bishop nodded, "But you don't think that Steve is enough?"
"Danny is restless and suffering from nightmares. He's not getting any of the rest he needs to help his recovery. The problem we are facing is the level of sedation that we can use. Danny is weak enough from his injuries, I don't want to compromise things by continually sedating him. I know that you usually wait until the patient is strong enough to talk about what happened but I was wondering if maybe..."
"If maybe I can help ease Danny's nightmares and flashbacks?' Bishop asked frowning.
"He's been through so much in the last week and he has so much more to face." Doc began. "And Steve is struggling as well."
Bishop absently tapped her pencil on her desk as she considered Bergman's suggestion.
"He's going to need to be alert enough for me to speak with." she mused softly. "And I would need to do a session with Steve before I would even consider speaking to Danny. We need to lay down some ground rules of how Danny's recovery is to proceed and make some serious decisions on what Danny should be told and what is best left unknown for now."
"I understand this is somewhat irregular," Bergman conceded, "But Danny needs help as soon as possible. So when are you available?"
The petite psychiatrist smiled, "Now if you want. All I will need is a private room and Steve McGarrett."
Bergman gave a satisfied smile, "That's all I needed to hear."
Pulling out the chair, McGarrett waited for the psychiatrist to sit before he settled himself in the chair opposite. He had at first been reluctant to leave his Second-In-Command's side but Bergman had convinced him that the psychiatrist's early intervention was extremely necessary in the young detective's physical as well as mental recovery. "All right, Doctor Bishop," he said uneasily, "Where do we start?"
"Why don't we start with you Steve and what you are feeling?" The psychiatrist answered quietly.
The lead detective bristled as he glanced at Doc who was standing near the door silently before returning his attention back to the woman who sat opposite him, he growled, "This is about how we can help Danno, not me!"
"I understand that, but I need to know where you stand so I'll know how you can best help him." She paused and met the steel blue eyes, "You have to be able to deal with what happened before you can help him. To help Danny recover, you need to understand that you are not responsible for Danny's rape." Bishop explained gently, "Or your guilt is going to become a barrier between you and him.
Danny has enough to deal with without the added burden of feeling responsible for your guilt. You have to remember Steve; he has already tried to protect you by not telling us everything that happened during the rape. He didn't want you to feel responsible for what happened even at his own expense. So if he thinks you are feeling guilty now, he is not going to respond to therapy."
McGarrett swallowed as his heart ached at the pain he had inadvertently caused his closest friend, and he could not help the wave of guilt that washed over him. "But this is my fault!' he began, "Kolola was trying to get even with me! That's why he raped Danny!" So disgusted with his role to play in this drama, Steve was unable to look the psychiatrist in the eye as he continued, "Then I just made things worse by trying to get some justice for him. Instead of helping, I just pushed him away. I couldn't even get him to open up to me because I didn't want to listen to what he had to say. I didn't even listen to your own warnings. I tried to push him into bringing that bastard to justice, my actions made him run straight back into Kolola's waiting arms. My god, it's my fault that Kolola managed to attack him again!" Suddenly rising to his feet, he began to pace the room, too upset to stop his confession, "if he hadn't managed to stop Kolola with that rock, we might be discussing his murder and not his recovery."
"But we're not, are we?" Bishop pointed out firmly.
"How the Hell can I apologize to him after making him feel as if he had no one or nowhere to turn to for help on that beach the other night? He was so scared and so alone that he almost died rather than have to face me!" McGarrett continued.
"You can't change what happened in the past but you can change how you will handle the situation in the future. Danny's mental health and physical recovery are at stake here. He needs your help. Don't let misplaced guilt stand in your way." Bishop answered sternly rising to halt the upset detective's pacing.
McGarrett stopped and glared at the psychiatrist, "So what do you want me to do? You know I'd do anything to help Danno, but I can't just turn off the way I feel."
"No one is asking you to turn off what you are feeling, Steve, but what you need to understand is you have no need to feel guilty. You were not responsible for Danny's rape- Kolola is the only one responsible for that. He was sick and should have never been released back into society. It was his decision to rape Dan and he used you as the reason for all his pain. As for your own actions about pursuing the case against Danny's wishes, you wanted to protect him, wanted to make what was wrong right, you just wanted to make sure justice was done for Danny. It's your way of protecting him!" Bishop smiled gently as she placed a hand on McGarrett's arm, "But Steve, learn from this. You made Danny part of your team because you had faith in his abilities and trusted his judgment. Trust him now. Danny knows what you did; you only had his best interests in mind. Your intentions were honest and true. You just wanted to do the best you could for him. You have nothing to feel guilty for."
"You're right," McGarrett said slowly, wishing his words reflected the feeling in his heart. Taking a deep breath, he murmured. "If I want Danno to trust me, I guess I need to trust you on this. So okay, I'm not to feel guilty, so what else do we need to do to help Danno get through this?"
Smiling as she glanced towards Bergman, the psychiatrist was visibly relieved the first hurdle to the young detective's recovery had been passed as she suggested they sit down to talk. "Listen to him. Encourage him. Don't contradict him and don't tell him what he needs to do. Make sure he knows you're there to support him. Let him open up on his own." She began, "and remember to make sure he knows that you don't believe for a moment that he is responsible for anything that happened. He is going to think that he did something to encourage the rape and he is going to be extremely sensitive to how you react when he does open up and talk about it. If you are feeling guilty Steve, it will show on your face and he is going to feel responsible for your emotions. That is something he doesn't need on top of everything else he is dealing with."
Steve knew that Danno often felt guilty for things that weren't his fault. Add that to the fact that Danno could read him like a book made it clear that he'd better purge any personal guilt no matter how hard that might be. His first responsibility was to Danno...his recovery and health. Nodding his agreement, he asked, "What about if he asks about Kolola?"
"Just tell him Kolola is no longer a threat. That you will discuss Kolola when he is a little stronger, leave it at that, if he still insists then let me know and together we will deal with it. As for the photos and Kolola's stalking, let's leave that until later. Danny doesn't need to be aware of that until he is stronger and more coherent to understand all of it. At the moment, we need to deal with the rape and the second assault and how Danny is dealing with those; the rest of the facts of the case can wait until Danny is strong enough to deal with them."
"I understand," McGarrett sighed, wondering silently if he really did. It reminded him of trying to traverse a minefield...one wrong step and everything could blow up in your face.
Rising from her seat Dr Bishop looked at the two men and asked, "Any questions?" At the two men's negative shakes of their head, she turned towards the door, "Lets go and see just how coherent our young friend is and if he is awake enough, I think we need to have a talk with him."
"Danno, open your eyes," Steve commanded softly, shaking the sleeping man's shoulder, "Come on Danno, open your eyes and look at me." His request was met by a soft moan as Danny shifted slightly against the pillows braced against his back. "That's it Danno, " McGarrett encouraged quietly, "Open your eyes and look at me." He smiled and lightly squeezed the warm shoulder under his hand as Danny's eyelids fluttered and slowly opened,
The blue eyes were glassy and unfocused as they turned in the direction of the voice and Steve could feel the rising tension as Danny tried to focus on the three figures surrounding him. Putting his hand gently on the side of the fevered face he turned Danny's head slightly to keep the focus on himself as Danny mumbled a frightened protest. "Shhh…look at me, Danno. Everything's okay." He waited a heartbeat as the fear slowly faded from Danny's face and his young friend managed to focus on him before he explained quietly, "We need to talk Aikane. I have to explain some things."
The patient swallowed and nodded in confusion, grimacing as the small movement re-ignited the pain in his back and leg.
"Just relax and try not to move around," Steve admonished gently as he glanced at the others in the room before returning his attention to his friend in the bed. McGarrett shifted uneasily, uncertain of where to start, aware of the tired blue eyes watching him nervously. He cleared his throat and whispered, "First of all, my friend, I want to apologize for not listening to you. I wanted to do what I thought was best for you, but I was wrong. The investigation was your decision to make, not mine." Bergman handed Steve a cool, moist washcloth and he gently wiped Danny's face, trying to cool him off a little. "Do you understand?"
Danny nodded but didn't speak as he watched McGarrett warily.
Steve felt his chest tighten at the uncertainty and slight distrust he saw in his best friend's eyes aware that he had placed it there with his own actions. Holding the cool cloth against the heated skin, Steve leaned closer, his eyes never leaving those of his ill and frightened friend as he whispered, "I'm sorry, Danno." He saw Danno swallow hard and gently wiped away the tears that began to trickle down the young man's face before he continued. "I'm also sorry that you felt that you had to protect me about what happened during the rape."
The blue eyes closed and Danny turned his head towards the pillow, "I don't know what you are talking about." He mumbled into the soft material.
"I think you do," Steve answered softly as he again reached for Danny's face and gently turned it back towards him. "I know that you told Dr. Bishop that you don't remember much of what happened but we both know that's a lie, isn't it my friend? I think you remember every moment of it!"
The blue eyes filled and overflowed, and Steve once again took the washcloth to wipe away the tears that now streamed down the flushed face. "We need to talk about what happened, Danno before it eats us both up alive.' Steve blinked back his own tears as he confessed, "I know what Kolola said to you while he was raping you. He told you that he was raping you to punish me, that the rape was my fault!" Steve could feel Danny beginning to tremble and squeezed his hand tightly as he softly whispered, "That's why you didn't want the investigation, isn't it? It wasn't just because you were scared that everyone would find out, which was just part of the reason, it was also because you didn't want me to know what Kolola said."
The hand Steve held now squeezed his tightly, admitting to a truth that was too painful to admit out loud. McGarrett squeezed the hand back in a silent signal of total understanding and the smallest of smiles crossed his lips as he whispered, "Everything is going to be okay, I promise."
A small nod of trust from the young man in the bed caused McGarrett's heart to soar as he again wiped the tears from his young friend's face as he spoke again. "I know it's going to be hard Danno but we need to talk about everything that's happened in order for us both to stop the nightmares and Dr Bishop believes that we need to do it now rather than later. Do you think you can do that?"
Danny nodded slightly, once again squeezing the hand that held his.
McGarrett smiled through his own falling tears and turned and looked at the two doctors standing just behind him, bolstered by encouraging nods before he turned back to the patient.
"Okay Danno, we need you to tell us what happened the other night and this time Aikane, I want you to tell us everything you can remember." Steve squeezed Danny's hand encouragingly, "No matter how difficult you think it might be for me to hear, understand?"
Danny nodded slightly, his eyes moving nervously to the figures standing in the background. Steve moved so he was directly in front of Danny's face, as he spoke softly "You're just talking to me."
"Ow, " Danny gasped as he tried to adjust his position.
Steve helped him settle more against the supporting pillows, "Easy,"
Seeming to be a bit more comfortable, Danny's pained and haunted eyes met Steve's. He swallowed hard and squeezed his hand tighter needing the comforting reassurance of his best friend's contact as he began haltingly. "I...I was asleep... I ... didn't even hear him...enter my apartment. He...he woke me up when he grabbed my arm and handcuffed it." Steve now held the trembling hand tightly in both of his as he waited for his young friend to continue. "I...I tried to fight him but he punched me…." Danny looked away unable to look McGarrett in the face as he softly murmured, "I...I...musta have blacked out for a minute...cause ...cause the next thing I...I can remember..." He stopped and swallowed the bile that rose in the back of his throat as he whispered brokenly, "he...he was on ...on top of me...Oh God Steve... he was...was raping me...And I couldn't stop him!"
"Easy Danno easy." Steve whispered as he wiped the teary face again, "You did everything you could to fight him. It wasn't your fault. He was the one responsible."
"Maybe I could have fought harder," Danno whispered tearfully.
McGarrett squeezed the trembling hand held tightly in his own as he quietly reassured the heartbroken young man, "You fought as hard as you could."
Biting his bottom lip, Danny struggled to continue. "Then...then when he was finished... he got up and ...and touched me on the face...that's ...that's when he told me..."
"Told you what Danno?" Steve pushed aware that Danny had hesitated; still worried about the effects Kolola's words would have on him.
Pulling his hand from Steve's Danny cried out as he attempted to roll onto his back, breaking eye contact with his closest friend as he struggled not to vomit. ""He said it was your fault, that next time I wouldn't live! I...I didn't want you to know, Steve." Tears once again poured from the tired eyes as the devastation became almost too much to bare, "I'm sorry."
Danny's hair was damp with fever and the strain of the discussion as Steve gently rolled him back onto his side and smoothed back the curls, "You have nothing to be sorry for. None of this was your fault. Kolola used you in an attempt to punish me. He blamed me for not convicting an innocent man after his wife and child were murdered when I was still an investigator in the Navy. Instead he decided to take the law into his own hands and played judge and jury and murdered an innocent man. Life wasn't easy for him after he was convicted and he blamed me for the treatment he received after he was sent to jail. He was a sick man Danno who never should have been released back into society after his incarceration." Steve explained. "We never made the connection until after I made you run." McGarrett shook his head as his own guilt rose to the surface, "I should have respected your wishes Danno and listened to what you were trying to tell me or rather I should have taken the time to find out what had really happened. Instead my pursuit for justice placed you in more danger. Kolola was watching every move you made and we never had a clue. It wasn't until he attacked you on the beach that we even knew he was a threat but by then it was too late."
"It's my fault," Danny interrupted, once again grabbing Steve's hand, needing the reassurance, "I should have told you everything at the beginning..." The young man suddenly stopped talking as his face grew white and he opened his eyes wide as the memory of what happened on the beach replayed in his mind.
"Danno?" Steve said anxiously, seeing the change in the young man as Doc stepped closer to the bed.
He looked up at McGarrett terrified, "Ohh God," he whispered shocked, "That's why you stopped investigating it, isn't it? I killed him! I killed him with that rock."
Doc shook his head warningly at Steve, instantly concerned at his patient's agitation.
"That's why... isn't it Steve?" Danny asked again, as he pulled away from McGarrett's touch, crying out in agony as pain tore through his body.
Steve grabbed the young man's shoulders, preventing him from moving anymore as he spoke firmly, "Danno, it was self-defense. You had no choice."
Danny was now openly sobbing, "I just wanted to get away. I couldn't... he was going to...I just...I didn't know...so I ran...but I could see the lights...I was so...scared..."
"I know Danno, I know." Steve soothed. "Tony saw everything that happened. You did what you had to get away. We both know Kolola had no intention of letting you live after he was going to rape you. It was self-defense… I'm so sorry that you felt you had to run."
"It's...it's not your...your fault. I...I should have..." He cried out as a bolt of pain shot through his body and he arched his back in pain.
"Easy Danno easy, just relax." Steve whispered as he grabbed Danny's hand again, watching as Doc grabbed a needle from his coat pocket and injected the contents into the IV line in the back of Danny's hand. "What happened was not your fault nor was it mine,' He whispered as he brushed away the tears that continued to trickle down the younger man's face with the back of his hand."I promise you that we are going to work through this together."
Danny nodded slightly as his eyes slid closed, his hand beginning to relax in the one that still held his tightly. "Together." He breathed as the darkness pulled him back under.
Steve continued to hold tightly to the now limp hand as he wiped away a last errant tear from the exhausted face of his young friend. McGarrett felt a small hand grab his shoulder and give it a light squeeze as Dr. Bishop whispered softly in his ear. "That's what he needed to hear Steve." She told the teary detective, "Now he can start healing with the knowledge he has the support that he needs."
"I intend to be here at his side for as long as it takes." McGarrett promised, "It's the least I can do after not listening to him."
"Steve," Dr. Bishop said firmly, her hand still on his shoulder, "No more self-blame. Danny can't move forward until you do. He's depending on you, so let go of the past and look to the future. That's the only way both of you can heal."
"Ok Doc, what ever you say!" Steve agreed. He frowned as he studied the sleeping face of his closest friend, "But I will need your guidance on just how to help him."
Bishop smiled as she studied the sleeping man herself. "Just be honest with your feelings and let him be honest with his. And most importantly, listen to what he has to say. As for what you tell him about the case itself. Answer his questions as much as you can but for now just go slowly. He is not yet strong enough to deal with the full details of the case."
"I understand," Steve murmured as the photos flashed through his mind.
"And," the doctor added, "Don't tell him what he could have done or should have done. Guide him if you need to, but as you work through this, let him lead the way."
McGarrett nodded, silently vowing that he would do the one thing that did NOT come naturally to him...stand back and let someone else take control.
Gathering up the witness's statements and the written reports on the case, Stuart slipped them into his briefcase before he picked up the plastic bag containing the photos and stared at them in disgust. It had been hard enough to read the bare details Steve and the guys had collected during the case but to see the rape of McGarrett's youngest detective so graphically displayed in full color made him feel physically sick. He placed the photos in the briefcase before he added the tape recorder. All the reports and statements indicated in the case against Danny Williams concerning the death of Kolola was quite clearly a case of self-defense. He sighed as he picked up the briefcase and headed towards the door. He did not want to leave such sensitive material anywhere where it could accidentally be read. No, he would keep the file close until he got the word from McGarrett that the young detective was well enough to be interviewed. To wrap up the case he just needed to hear the story from Williams's own lips to the events that happened so he could put the case to bed.
Standing by the small window, McGarrett stared out at the clouds that changed from orange to pink to a fiery red as the sun slowly dipped behind the horizon, his thoughts far removed from the natural beauty that he was witnessing. Rubbing a hand unconsciously down his face, he wondered just how good a friend he really was. How could he place his own sense of justice above his closest friend's well being? He had known that Danno was scared, confused and hurting, unable to deal with the rape but instead of being Dan's closest friend he had acted as a cop. He sighed guiltily as he remembered the way he had ignored Danno's pleas to leave the case alone. He should have known then there was something more than just the attack that was troubling his friend.
McGarrett sighed as he continued to stare out at the increasing darkness, as the questions swirled relentlessly around in his head. Why had he been so blind to what Danno was feeling? Why did he hide behind the badge rather than offer Danno comfort? Was it his fault that Danno had been punished by a madman for something he had done? Was it because he believed that the rape had made Danno less of a man? - He shook his head, instantly rejecting the very idea; Danno was the strongest man he had ever known. The young detective would recover from this, of that he had no doubt and he would be there every step of the way to ensure that Danno did.
He swallowed a sob as he forced himself to look truthfully within himself for the answers. The answer was simple he had been scared. Scared that to offer his closest friend the emotional comfort he so desperately needed would mean lowering the barriers that he had erected so long ago to allow Danno to see a side of him that he had kept hidden from the world. It was hard for him to show any signs of weaknesses even to his closest friend, he had always had to be the strong one ever since the death of his father. When confronted with the horror of the attack and seeing Danno's reactions, he had fallen back on the one thing that had always worked in the past- Catch the monster who had inflicted such pain and get justice for the victim- DON'T LET YOURSELF BLEED.
The weak panicked whisper from the direction of the bed broke through his guilty musings and he turned and hurried to the side of the bed, smiling as he gently grabbed the cool hand that reached desperately for his. "Easy Danno, easy, I'm here."
"I…I thought that…that you had gone." Danny whispered his fear evident in his voice.
Blinking back the tears of guilt, McGarrett squeezed the young man's hand as he cleared his throat attempting to get rid of the lump that had suddenly formed there," I promised you Aikane, that we will get through this together.' He whispered, swallowing hard again as his voice cracked, "I'm sorry that I wasn't by your side when you really needed me, but if you can forgive me, I promise that I won't leave you until you are ready for me to. I told you before aikane, we are going to deal with this together. You're not alone."
"There's nothing for me… to forgive, Steve," Danny breathed as he squeezed the hand that held his tightly, tears spilling from the haunted blue eyes, "I'm the one…who should… be apologizing…to you. I should…have told you…everything that…happened."
Using the back of his fingers to wipe away Danny's tears, Steve leaned closer as he whispered softly into Danny's ear, "We both made mistakes, Danno, mistakes I wish that we could both go back and undo but we can't my friend, the best we can do is move on together. I know that we can get through this." McGarrett could see that just talking was exhausting his friend and he gave Danny's hand a light squeeze as he softly commanded, "Now how about you get some more sleep, I promise that when you wake up, I will still be here and we can talk some more."
Danny nodded slowly as his eyes slowly drifted closed and the darkness began to tug him back into its comforting hold as he heard Steve whisper in his ear. "Now sleep Danno, I promise that you are not alone Kaikaina. I'm here whenever you need me."
Steve continued to hold his young friend's hand until he was certain that Danny was finally asleep before he reluctantly released it and pulled up the thin sheet, settling the material over the sleeping man's shoulders.
He turned to pull a chair closer but before he could sit, the ICU room door opened as Walter Stuart nervously entered the room.
Stuart hesitated by the door, his eyes scanning the sleeping man in the bed. He had been told of Williams's injuries but seeing the young detective lying in the hospital bed took his breath away. Danny looked as if he was closer to death than life. He had never seen so many tubes or medical machines attached to anyone before in his life. He reluctantly approached as if fearful that his footsteps would wake Danny up, now regretting wanting to wrap this case up so fast. Maybe now was not the best time to take the final statement from the young man.
"What do you want, Walter?" McGarrett asked as he suddenly rose from his chair and stood in front of the District Attorney, reminding Stuart of a mother bear protecting her cub.
"I…I heard that Danny was conscious," Stuart began, his eyes darting between the sleeping man in the bed and his watchdog. He swallowed hard as he straightened his shoulders and tried to stand at full height as he spoke again, "I was going to get his final statement, so we can wrap up the case."
Grabbing the older man's arm McGarrett hissed as he led the District attorney away from the side of the bed, "He's not in any condition to give you a statement yet!"
Stuart nodded as they stopped near the door. "I'm sorry Steve, I didn't realize just how seriously injured he was. The statement can wait."
"I'll let you know when he is up to talking about what happened, Walter," Steve said more softly, "But don't expect it to be anytime soon, he has a lot to deal with."
"I can wait, "Stuart answered, fiddling with his case as he glanced back at the man in the bed, "How's he doing anyway?"
McGarrett swallowed hard as he turned back towards the bed, "He's in for a rough recovery, both physically and emotionally but he will make a full recovery. He's a fighter, he's not going to let this beat him."
"I'm sure he will fine, especially when he has you by his side." Stuart answered truthfully as he nervously juggled his briefcase. "I'll wait until you say he is ready before I take his statement."
"Mahalo, Walter," McGarrett murmured as he opened the door, silently dismissing the D.A.
Taking the hint, Stuart stepped out into the corridor, glancing back at the man in the bed before returning his attention back to the protective lead detective. "Umm. Steve, I just want to inform you about the loss some of our evidence." he began softly as he juggled the briefcase from hand to hand. He waited until he had McGarrett's full attention before he continued, "I'm afraid that there was some sort of mix up in my office while I was sorting out the case. It seems that I accidentally destroyed some of the evidence."
"What evidence?" Steve asked cautiously.
"I'm afraid that the photos were accidentally shredded Steve," Stuart shrugged as he glanced back at the man in the bed, "I'm sorry." He murmured as he suddenly spun on his heels and started to walk away, leaving McGarrett staring after him. He only took a few steps before he heard a soft but grateful, "Mahalo Walter." He smiled and turned back to the detective standing in the ICU room doorway and raised his hand in acknowledgement as he said softly, "Williams and I might not always get along, Steve, but he's one of my guys too. Now go back in there. He needs you!" He turned and walked away, aware that if he needed McGarrett in the next few days, he knew precisely where he would find him, right next to Williams's side where he needed to be. Stuart smiled as he felt the contents of his briefcase shift, aware that he had his own place to be- and that was somewhere with a good paper shredder.