Everyone stayed the night at the hospital. Margo was dehydrated and malnourished. Carlos, thankfully, didn't need any surgery for his nose, but they kept him for observation on his concussion. Danae stayed mostly because her apartment was unlivable at this point and she had nowhere else to go. Trent would only leave Carlos' side to check on Margo, or Margo's side to see to Carlos.

"Kim, you're a genius!" Carlos declared as she arrived. "Ryan was just here, and he told me what you did."

"I'm just glad it worked!" she replied shyly.

"You and me both," he said. "You know you have a real knack for manipulating people."

"Thanks?"

"It's a good thing in this business, I swear," he said. He laughed. "Heck, it's good for other things, too."

"Such as?" Kim ventured, though she wasn't sure she wanted to know.

"Women. Hey, baby!" he said brightly as Dr. Chase came into the room. "I was just thinking about you!"

"You look awful," she replied evenly.

"I could use a little TLC," Carlos admitted. "Kiss the boo-boo?" he pointed to a butterfly bandage just above his left eyebrow. Kim rolled her eyes and took her leave. She could see where this was going and she didn't want to see it.


The next couple of days seemed to drag in comparison to the frenzied week that preceded it. Margo and Trent holed up in Margo's apartment, not to be seen except when they occasionally surfaced to find food. They had a lot of catching up to do. Kim and Carlos were busy with paperwork, both for the Dallas PD and for their own records. Danae had disappeared almost as soon as she was discharged from the hospital. Feeling like her welcome had been worn out, she enlisted Butch's help to find a new apartment and some guys to help her move what was left of her possessions on such a short notice.

"What you don't realize," Carlos said, surprising her, "is that Butch tells me everything." She had been pacing outside of Uppercuts, unsure whether to go up to Thunder Investigations and see Carlos. Butch had seen her and called Carlos, who had demanded to be notified at once if Danae showed up again. He was upset to have not been able to help her find a place to live.

"I was just…"

"We've been worried," Carlos interrupted her. "How's the new apartment?"

Danae ducked her head. "It's good," she said without much conviction.

"So, are we going to be friends?" Carlos asked. "Or are you just going to disappear forever?"

"I thought about moving again," she said, meeting his eyes for the first time. "But, I don't know. It kinda feels like running away or something. Besides, I like it here. The people are friendly." Carlos snorted. "I just…I don't know how this works. I mean, you and I almost ended up dead. How do you get past that?"

"Oh please. This isn't almost dead!" Carlos indicated his face. "Being shot in the chest and falling three stories out of a building only to be taken to a homeless shelter instead of a hospital, that's almost dead!"

Danae smiled shyly. "So can I buy y'all lunch or something?" she asked.

"Like Butch will let you pay," he scoffed. "But yes. Actually, Kim and I were wondering if you'd be willing to donate your skills to Thunder Investigations. A new case has come up: a woman claims her house is haunted!" He put his arm around Danae and led her up the steps to Thunder Investigations, filling in the details.

Kim was mildly surprised to see Danae come into the office with Carlos. She figured Danae would skip town after everything that had happened. But instead, it seemed like Danae was becoming an informal part of the group. Everything had changed in the past week, Kim decided. It was too early to decide if it was for the better. Or for the worse?