Title: Where There's Smoke
Disclaimer: Not mine.
A/N: A short little missing scene for ep 1.08. This scene was inspired a little by a talk with geminigrl11 and a lot by a conversation with the awesome moogsthewriter, who is far too prone to encouraging my plot bunnies. Beta is thanks to moogsthewriter, who took the time to look this over for me :)
Summary: Steve was still staring at the door, waiting for the other shoe to fall. Missing scene to 1.08.
Steve was pretty used to Danny's antics. He had come to expect the rants whenever Steve did something mildly questionable. He was used to the tirades whenever something inherently tied to Hawaii became an issue. He was used to Danny's ties and his shoes and his hair and his strange peculiarities.
So at this point, Steve sort of figured he knew what to expect from Danny. Ranting, raving, wild hand gestures: all par for the course.
Walking out, just like that?
Steve was still staring at the door, waiting for the other shoe to fall.
"Do you think he's okay?" Kono asked, and she sounded younger than she was.
Steve swallowed, tilting his head. He waited a moment, but when it became clear that Danny wasn't coming back, his brow furrowed. "I honestly don't know."
"Of course he's not," Chin said.
Steve turned back to look at the remaining members of his team. Kono had her arms crossed nervously across her chest, chewing on a fingernail anxiously. Chin was turning off the screen.
"You think?" Steve asked, and he was sincere, because he knew this case wasn't easy for Danny, but he'd never known Danny as one to quit.
Chin looked up at him, eyebrows raised. "Some cases are personal," he said. Then he inclined his head. "You know that."
Steve did know that. It was why he'd agreed to the governor's task force to begin with. Truthfully, he was used to being the one on a mission with Danny at his side playing devil's advocate. He'd always thought it was harder being the one with something to prove, but taking his turn as the supportive player was harder than he might have anticipated.
Especially because he wasn't sure if Danny was pissed because Steve was willing to entertain the accusation or because Steve was right.
But what he did know was that Danny had always been there for him. With vocal objections and ample complaints, but Danny had always been there.
Steve had to be there now.
He nodded. "I should go after him," he said.
Chin shook his head, walking around the table. "I don't think so, brah," he said.
Steve frowned, looking at his father's former protege. "Why not?"
Chin tilted his head. "Do you believe him?"
"I believe that he wants Mekka to be innocent," Steve said.
Chin shook his head again, a bemused smile on his face. "And that's why you shouldn't go after him," he said.
Steve stopped. "I don't follow."
Chin's expression was earnest. "Danny knows you want to believe him," he said. "But he needs someone who actually will believe him."
Steve sighed, rubbing a hand over his mouth and looking at the ceiling. When he looked back at Chin, the other man was watching him intently. "And you believe him?" he asked. "You don't think Mekka might be guilty?"
Chin smiled again. "Those are two different things," he said. "Very different things."
Steve worked his jaw, glancing from Chin to Kono, who was still watching them with an uncertain distance. He pursed his lips, looking at Chin again. "Someone should go after him."
Chin nodded. "I've got it."
"I know how Danny can get-"
Chin shook his head, interrupting him. "I got it."
Steve wanted to protest, but there was something in Chin's face that kept him from it. He thought of the look on Danny's face, the sound of the door closing behind him when he walked out and didn't come back.
Steve nodded. "Okay," he said. "Call me later so I know you found him, and we'll regroup tomorrow."
Chin nodded. "Will do," he said, heading toward the door.
When Chin was gone, Steve drew a breath, then looked at Kono again. He smiled. "You might as well go home," he said. "Looks like we've had enough for tonight."
She nodded, but her face still look taut. She wet her lips, hesitating. "We'll figure it out," she said, and she sounded a little hopeful. "Right?"
Steve nodded, trying to believe it. "Of course," he said. He forced a smile. "You know Danny."
Kono tried to smile, too, but it didn't reach her eyes. "Yeah," she said, nodding a little. "I know Danny."
Steve jerked his head to the door. "Go get some rest," he said. "Crazy day."
Kono nodded again. "Yeah," she said. "Crazy day."
With that, she ducked her head, moving silently toward the door.
Alone, Steve looked over the room. Looked at the file on the desk, Danny's work left still open around them.
All the evidence said Mekka was probably guilty.
All the evidence except Danny's dogged belief.
Steve sighed, shaking his head. There was just so much smoke, and sometimes it seemed like Danny was getting lost in it.
Danny was his partner, and Steve had dedicated himself to supporting him no matter what. He took this case for Danny and he'd let him drive a suspect around on the hood of a car. Because that was what partners did.
And he was trying to help Danny close this case. Trying to make sure that if there was a fire, he wasn't about to get burned by it.
He had to think Danny would see that. If not tonight, then tomorrow, or the next day. Eventually Danny would see that.
Rolling his head on his neck, Steve tried to work out the kinks. With another sigh, he collected the files to take home. Another look couldn't hurt, and if he couldn't be there for Danny in the way he wanted, he would settle for this.
Those are two different things.
Chin's voice echoed in his head. Wanting to believe and supporting someone wholeheartedly. Danny had questioned him every step of the way, but had never left him when it counted. Steve had never considered that sometimes Danny might really disagree with him, that sometimes he was following along because that was what partners did.
Steve had picked Danny for a partner without knowing what it meant. In the Navy, he'd worked with lots of men and women, but his ultimate allegiance had always been to the greater good. Now, with Five-0, it was different. They were family, and no matter what one of them did, the rest were always there, without question, without fail.
Where there was smoke, there might be fire, and to them, it didn't matter. If one of them was going in, they all were.
Steve tucked the files under his arm and glanced at his watch. There was no telling how long it would take Chin to find Danny, and it was late as it was, but Steve didn't intend on getting any sleep until he made sure they were all okay. They'd get a fresh start in the morning.
With one last look around, Steve moved to the door. He lingered in the doorway before flicking off the light and heading home.