A/N: don't get me wrong, I loved the finale. Most of the cliffhangers and loose ends were done wonderfully… but I'm not patient enough to wait for September. And I was dissatisfied by the general lack of team Whump. I mean, come on people, let the bullets fly! Plus, I'm freaked out by the whole "Five-0 getting in trouble and going to jail" thing. So I fixed the problem… with a few changes.
So this begins as the finale closes, and everything up to that point is the same. Kono is brought in for investigation, Chin is contemplating rejoining Five-0, Danny and Rachel are talking about moving back to Newark, and Steve is confronting the governor.
Big difference: Wo Fat doesn't have a taser. Remember that. It's important.
Disclaimer: All recognizable characters, plotlines, and snappy catchphrases belong to CBS studios. No profit is being made in the publication of this story.
Kono knew the old lady who had questioned her the day of the robbery was on the other side of the glass. She knew that old lady was scrutinizing her face. And she knew she had no chance of not being singled out as the culprit.
But she did have a chance at convincing a fellow native woman that she was not in the wrong. That was the beautiful thing about being a woman- intuition. The elderly woman might just find pity for the downtrodden and helpless.
So Kono did something she had not done in a very long time; she hunched her shoulder so that she didn't stand too much taller than the others in the room. She looked to the left side of the mirrored window (the witness always stood on the left) and she let her eyes fill with unshed tears. Not enough to alert a man, but enough for any woman to see in an instant.
And then she waited. And hoped. And kept her teary eyes boring into the mirror, praying that she'd remembered the old lady's height well enough to capture her eyes.
Ten seconds passed. And then twenty.
A full minute later, the intercom buzzed to life and a very annoyed voice sounded overhead, iterating that all suspects were free to go.
Kono let out a breath she didn't know she was holding. Her legs like jelly and her hand shaking violently, she followed number two out of the room and back into the main offices and booking area of HPD. The officer who had taken her in and the IA official stood waiting for her, both scowling.
The Internal Affairs officer spoke as soon as she stepped toward them.
"I don't like it, but you're free to go, Kalakaua. Remember, we'll be watching you. Closely." He narrowed his eyes at her. But Kono could not make herself care about the threat. All she could think was I'm free to go. I'm free.
She couldn't help but smile a little.
Turning from the angry officers, Kono marched down the hall toward the door. She didn't make it ten steps when a soft and wrinkled hand grasped at her wrist. Stopping suddenly and turning on her heel, she looked down to find the old woman who she had met the day she and Steve stole from HPD. The woman's eyes were filled with the same tears that Kono had in her own moments ago. But she managed a watery smile.
"You're a good kid, officer Kalakaua," she said, wiping her eyes with a battered handkerchief.
"Thank you," Kono whispered back, her words laced with the double meaning she was sure the elderly lady had caught.
"A very nice deputy told me the story. About stealing money from the police. About stealing it for your Ohana."
Kono could only nod, her nerves shot.
"It was a very brave thing to do, Officer Kalakaua."
"Call me Kono."
"…Kono. I am Auntie Mekia."
Kono held out a hand, and Auntie Mekia took it daintily. "It's a pleasure."
"The pleasure is mine, Kono," she said, and then dropped her voice to a whisper, "and your secret is safe with me. Family is more important than any law they throw at you."
Kono felt her eyes prickle with tears, and this time she wasn't faking them.
She bent down and grasped Mekia in a soft hug.
"Thank you, Auntie Mekia, so much."
Auntie Mekia winked and then shooed her away as only an old woman could.
Giving one last nod, Kono smiled gently and continued out of the precinct.
Chin could only stare. It was only metal. Metal and leather. It didn't mean anything.
But it did.
It meant redemption for a crime he didn't commit. It meant respect from the men he trained. It meant having his old life back again as though the last year had not happened at all.
It meant forgiving the men who betrayed him, left him in the rain. It meant giving up Five-0.
But was there even a Five-0 anymore? Steve was MIA, Danny was acting strangely distant, and Kono… Kono was being investigated by IA just like he was. His cousin could very well lose her badge.
Chin shook his head, trying to dispel the contradicting thoughts.
So which would it be, HPD and the easy way back to the top? Or Five-0 and the struggle tooth and nail for salvation?
It wasn't much of a choice.
With a great sigh, Chin picked up the HPD badge and studied it closely for a moment, remembering the familiar grooves and bumps that marked him as a member of the Honolulu Police Department. He remembered being a rookie under Jack McGarrett and meeting a much younger and wilder Steve McGarrett. He remembered Kono's childish face beaming with excitement at his graduation. He remembered his aunt and uncle and how hard he fought for the both of them.
And then he remembered how he got where he was. He remembered Steve picking him up and brushing him off. And Danny giving him a reason to smile again. And Kono talking him back from the ledge when he felt like his life wouldn't go on after being let go.
Giving the gleaming golden trinket one last look, he set it back on the desk and returned the Five-0 badge to his belt.
Satisfied with the decision he'd made, he wasted no more time reminiscing about the past; he moved quickly from his chair and out of his office, weaving in and out of HPD officers and IA bastards turning the place apart. He was, for the most part, ignored. Stopping briefly to tell his would- be police chief that he was sorry, but uninterested in the position at HPD, he walked out of the office.
He caught Jenna Kaye in the lobby. She looked scared. Very scared.
"Kaye?" He questioned, putting an arm out to stop her.
"Chin?" She looked up, relieved. And then panic reentered her eyes. "Chin! Thank god! The alarm just went off at the governor's house."
It didn't take a genius to figure it out.
"I'm afraid to think that it's true, but it must be. Chin, HPD doesn't know yet. Technically, Five-0 still exists. You need to find Danny and go now, before HPD finds out. You got a few minutes tops."
Chin nodded once, squeezed her arm reassuringly, and moved past her out the front door and to his car. His phone was out of his pocket the next second, ringing away incessantly.
"Danny. It's Chin. We have a problem…"
Danny didn't want to leave Hawaii. He couldn't believe he was even saying it- even just in his head0 but he didn't want to leave. He'd built a life here. He had a new family here. One that he couldn't just up and walk away from. Not after the year they'd spent together.
But Rachel didn't want to stay, and he loved her too much to ever say differently.
"Are you okay, Danny?" She asked, snapping him out of his reverie.
"Yeah," he replied, thoroughly unconvinced by his own words. He knew he should be out looking for Steve, and helping Kono, and talking Chin out of rejoining HPD, but he couldn't help but stop at Rachel's. If even just to see her and Grace. Just for a moment.
"Yes, I am."
"Danny," she sighed, running her hands up his arms just the way he liked, "this is a mistake."
"W-what?" Danny choked, frozen in fear. Mistake? What was a mistake? Their relationship?
"Not like that." She guessed where he was going. "We can't heave Oahu."
"What?" He questioned, feeling slow. "But- but you said this was Stan's home. Not yours."
"I was wrong," she answered, smiling lightly at him. "I see how you are. This is your home, too, now. And Grace's. I can't let the two of you leave the place you love just because it's the same place Stan calls home. I won't do that to you."
"Are you serious?" Danny questioned, his heart filling inexplicably with an odd giddiness at the prospect. Could he really have the best of both worlds? Grace and Rachel and work? Both families?
"Yes," she replied.
He couldn't help it. He laughed out loud, picked up his ex and soon to be ex-ex-wife and spun her around until she laughed and demanded to be put down.
"I love you," he said, kissing her full on the lips.
"Love you too, Danny."
And they stood there for exactly a moment and let the happiness sink in.
And then Danny's phone rang.
Pulling himself out of the bubble and back to reality, he answered.
"Danny. It's Chin. We have a problem."
"What?" Danny questioned, taking Rachel's hand out of comfort.
"Steve. He's gone after the governor."
"Shit! Okay, meet me at the mansion in five."
Hanging up, he turned back to Rachel and gave her another long, slow kiss, almost losing himself in her sweet scent.
"You have to go." It wasn't a question. He nodded. So did she.
"I love you," Danny said again.
"I love you more," she replied. "Bring him back."
Danny didn't question how she knew what he was going to do.
The governor gave Steve a long, scrutinizing look and made no attempt to answer his question.
Is that why you had Laura Hills Killed? Because she was disloyal?"
One breath passed. And then two. Silence.
"Yes," she whispered, looking aged and worn. Steve mentally sighed in relief. There it was. The confession he'd been waiting for.
"And my father? Was he disloyal, governor?"
"Steve, I have done nothing but-"
"Answer the question!" She flinched.
"And my mother?"
"Did Wo Fat put you up to this?" Steve asked, his hands and voice shaking and his eyes reddening with tears he would not shed.
"Yes." It was nothing more than a whisper.
Steve moved forward, gun still trailed on the governor, and snatched his phone from her desk, pocketing it and with it her full confession. His eyes didn't leave Jameson's. He suspected her eyes were red for the same reason his were, but it didn't invoke pity in him, only a sense of vindictive justice.
He was focused. Too focused. Not aware of his surroundings. Not aware until the last possible second.
And he was sure the only thing that saved the bullet from hitting him square in the head was eleven years of combat and a wacked out sense of self preservation that, according to Danny, didn't even exist at all.
He turned and purposefully tripped over himself just as the bullet propelled out of Wo Fat's gun. It missed his forehead. But it didn't miss him.
Steve was wearing a vest. But Wo Fat wasn't aiming for his chest.
The slammed into the one, small, exposed pocket of skin just between his collarbone and neck, tearing into the soft flesh, leaving him breathless. Steve continued to fall, even as the second bullet propelled into his shoulder, fire spreading down the limb. His gun clattered uselessly away from him.
Finally, with one last shot straight to his vested heart, Steve hit the ground with a dull thud, struggling to breathe and blinking the blackness away from the corners of his eyes.
Wo Fat swam into view above him, a cold smile on his face and a gun in his outstretched hand. Steve blinked and his vision turned black. Another blink and Wo Fat returned, framing the gun barrel that was the focus of his gaze. Struggling to breathe, hands clawing at the floor, desperately gasping for air even as the blood filled his throat, he did the only thing he could.
HPD took longer than anticipated to get the call about the governor's house. Jenna considered them unbelievably lucky, considering all the talk inside Five-0 HQ about the goddamn traitorous bastard Steve McGarrett.
In any case, Jenna found herself with seven minutes she did not know what to do with, and so she did the only thing she could. She holed herself up in Steve's office and poured over all the evidence in Laura Hills' murder, hoping and praying to find something that would prove Steve was innocent.
What she didn't anticipate was that she would actually be able to do that in seven minutes.
But she did.
Jenna went back to the fingerprints of Steve's they found at Laura's house, looking closely. She wanted to find something, anything, that told her in no uncertain terms that McGarrett was innocent of the crime he'd been charged with.
She blew up each print to huge proportions on the computer screen, and looked from one to the next, trying to find a pattern. Or a key. Or a computer code. Or God. Something.
Ah… there it was.
Jenna actually shrieked out loud, alerting the HPD and IA officers to her presence in Steve's office. But she didn't care. Running out into the main room, she shouted until all eyes were on her and all talking had ceased.
"Good," she said nodding to herself
"HPD guys, IA guys, you're case is wrapped up."
"What the hell are you talking about, Ha'ole?" One officer questioned, scowling. She offered a grin in return.
"I'm talking about the case against Steve McGarrett." Without waiting for the uproar in the room to die down, she put her fingers to the computer desk and typed away furiously until a picture of Steve McGarrett in Naval dress and a smattering of his prints appeared.
"HEY!" She yelled, effectively silencing the room. All eyes returned to her.
"Look at the prints you found of McGarrett's at Laura Hills' house," Jenna said, indicating at the screen. "And look at Steve's thumbprint." Again, she indicated toward his naval records.
"Son of a…" one man breathed, catching on. Jenna smirked.
"Exactly. All the prints are thumbprints. Beyond that, each one has a small sliver missing from top left corner, consistent with being copied. Over and over."
There was silence. No one spoke for at least thirty seconds.
Finally, a deputy in the back of the room stood up. "I knew McGarrett couldn't do it!" He cried. "He may be an insufferable bastard, but he'd never betray his team."
There was a murmur of agreement in the room. Jenna grinned hugely.
And then the grin slipped off her face. She remembered where Steve was. And where Danny and Chin were going.
And then the news of the governor's alarm going off filtered into the office after bypassing all the convoluted traps and communications smog Jenna had created, and all hell broke loose.
Danny arrived at the Governor's mansion in four minutes, beating Chin by no more than ten seconds. Together, they moved through the now open gate and into the eerily quiet house, passing unconscious guards along the way. The entire thing screamed Steve McGarrett: Navy extraordinaire.
Chin pushed open the front door, as Danny noted the abandoned lock- picking tools on the ground, and they crossed the threshold into the huge house.
"This is bad," Chin muttered, more to himself than Danny.
"It's very… Steve," Danny replied.
A gunshot rang out through the silent house. And then another. And another.
Without so much as a look, Danny and Chin followed the sound of the noise up the stairs and toward the study.
A forth and fifth shot permeated the quiet as they ran.
Danny rounded the corner into Jameson's study, Chin hot on his heels, guns raised and ready to fire.
But he had to pause.
There, in the center of the room, stood Wo Fat. Flesh and blood and seemingly unconcerned by the presence of two detectives- it looked as though he did not even notice they were there- Wo Fat held a gun loosely in his hand, eyes trained on the Governor's desk. Danny followed his gaze.
The woman was slumped in her chair, clearly dead, with two blotches of red staining her chest.
Sirens could be hear outside the house. HPD had arrived. Footsteps could be heard faintly downstairs. Still, Wo Fat did not move.
A choking sound made Danny looked down. And he wished very quickly that he hadn't.
Steve lay on the floor, convulsing slightly. His neck and shoulder were covered with blood, and he was rasping for air.
Danny didn't think twice about stepping into the room to help his fallen partner. Unfortunately, his step echoed enough for Wo Fat to be alerted by his presence. Fortunately, Chin Ho Kelly was a ninja.
Just as Wo Fat whipped around, gun raised and bullets ready to fly, Chin stepped out behind Danny and aimed. Each man got off one shot. Wo Fat's slammed into the wall above Danny's head. Chin's slammed into Wo Fat.
In a completely atypical and anticlimactic villain fashion, Wo Fat did nothing but gape for a second, and then fall to the ground, blood oozing from a neat hole in the center of his forehead.
Danny wanted to sigh with relief. He wanted to- not awkwardly- kiss Chin and dance around. He wanted to jump for joy.
Instead, he fell to the ground beside his partner, Chin right behind him.
Steve's eyes were closed, but they opened immediately and he gasped and choked for air when Danny lay a hand gently on his chest. Danny's eyes widened at the sight of the oozing blood and ragged hold in between Steve's neck and collarbone. Another would in his shoulder bled equally.
"Danny," Chin said urgently, "Look at his chest. We have to get his vest off. Now."
Danny caught sight of the slug that sat right where Steve's heart lay underneath the Kevlar, and nodded. Yanking the Velcro loose, he and Chin gently tugged the vest off, leaving Steve in nothing but a bloody black t-shirt.
Steve's breathing eased slightly, but the choking continued. Danny put both hands on the wound in his partner's neck, while Chin took the opposite shoulder.
Danny watched as Steve's eyes wandered in and out of focus, sometimes there and sometimes not. Fear coursed through him when they closed.
"Hey!" He cried desperately, pushing harder against the flowing blood underneath his hands. "Hey! You stay awake! Stay awake, McGarrett."
HPD burst into the room at that second, and Danny was sure they weren't prepared for what they saw. A standoff, maybe. But a dead Governor, a dead crime lord, and a man they'd come to begrudgingly respect lying on the floor, barely clinging to life? No way.
"Get a medic up here!" Chin cried, and his voice broke.
Danny could feel Steve's pulse under his fingers, and he could feel it race as the seconds wore on. Funny, pulses were supposed to slow this close to death. Not race.
But McGarrett's heart was going a mile a minute, trying to feed oxygen to his depraved lungs and brain. Blood oozed out between Danny's fingers. Steve's eyes opened one last time, meeting his partner's with a second of amazing clarity, and then closed.
Chin stood back, hating every second of it, as he and Danny watched the paramedics frantically try and save a man that, only a few moments ago, was supposed to be wanted for murder. By the way HPD looked on with morose guilt, Chin could guess that that was not longer the case.
"Charging three hundred!... Clear!" Steve's back arched from the shock, but collapsed back down a second later, his heart still stubbornly refusing to beat.
Chin's vision blurred as liquid brimmed the edge of his eyes. C'mon, McGarrett, he willed silently, you can't give up. Not now.
Danny was shaking. Chin placed a hand on the smaller man's shoulder comfortingly, even though it did neither of them very much good.
"Charging 360!... Clear!" Steve's chest once again rose as the paddles sent electricity through him, and crashed back down on the floor.
"Nothing." The voices were less hopeful. Less determined.
The medic holding the paddles glanced at Danny, and Chin could see the man's lined face crease with pity. Danny looked so broken; his hands shook, spraying small droplets of his partner's blood onto the once immaculate white floor.
"Again." The medic declared, and placed the paddles to Steve's chest once more.
"Charging 400!... Clear!" Steve convulsed under the electrical pressure and, for the third time, fell to the floor. Only this time, there was the telltale beeping of a machine that depicted a working heart.
Chin sighed. Danny sighed. Everybody sighed.
But they weren't out of the woods yet. The paramedics continued to stem the blood flow from Steve's increasingly pale body, all the while jabbing him with needles and hurriedly placing him on a stretcher. As they did, his phone fell from his pocket and Chin spotted the device laying on the floor as the medical team raced out of the room, McGarrett laying on a stretcher in the middle.
Danny made to follow, but Chin held him back.
"He's with the people who can help him most," the older man said, placing a hand on Danny's arm.
Danny looked upset for a second, but nodded. Chin walked toward Steve's fallen cell phone, Danny right behind him. The phone looked as it always did, except that it had no code required to open it as it usually did. Chin frowned; the only reason it wouldn't be secure would be if Steve wanted them to find it. Because he was prepared for the worst. Prepared to die. The thought was not uplifting.
The recording application was up and running, and the play button innocently blinked up at them. Despite the situation, Chin smirked. So did Danny.
Leaving the room with the two dead supervillians, both men found an empty hallway devoid of Crime Scene Units or HPD officers and sat down.
Wordlessly, Chin pressed the play button on the device.
They hadn't slept for days. Three, to be exact. Not since Steve was so close to death. Not even when they were told he would live.
There was just too much to do. They had to cooperate with HPD to posthumously convict Wo Fat and Governor Jameson with murder, clear Steve's name, reinstate Five-0 under the interim Governor (who, consequently, was in full support of the team and what they did, and even promised not to betray any of them to a crime lord of any kind ) and tie up all loose ends with the case.
"I'm exhausted," Kono said, sinking into the couch in Steve's hospital room, closing her eyes. Chin nodded, doing something similar in the uncomfortable looking chair beside the bed. Danny nudged Kono over a bit and sat next to her, actually sighing as he sunk into the sofa.
"Lucky McGarrett… guy gets to sleep through all the clean up."
"I doubt he'd agree with your statement," Chin replied, sounding like he could really care less at this point.
"He looks like shit, let him sleep," Kono said, patting Danny on the knee without opening her eyes.
And Danny couldn't help but agree with her. Steve was a mess; his lower neck and upper chest were bandaged, along with his shoulder. He still required a ventilator to breathe for him, and he was exceedingly pale from the blood loss.
Still, he was alive. And Danny's chest constricted with pride at the though; Steve, charged with a murder he didn't commit, had his team and livelihood ripped from his in less than a day and still proceeded to, in his unorthodox and manic way, actively pursue the case and find answers. It had almost killed him, but it had also ended the reign of a corrupt official and a Yakuza crime lord.
All in a day's work. Most impressive.
Kono and Chin fell asleep quickly, leaving Danny with his racing thoughts.
That was, at least, until Steve's heart monitor began to quicken.
Danny jumped up and hurried to his partner's side at the first sound.
The monitor continued to change, and Steve began to shift. And then he opened his eyes.
At first he looked about wildly and seemed unable to focus. But after a moment his eyes found Danny's, and he relaxed slightly. Danny couldn't help but smile at the sight of Steve's gaze. His very alive gaze. He said the first thing that came to his mind.
"Welcome back, you crazy son of a bitch."
A/N: Yes? No? Maybe so? I only wrote it because I hate waiting. And I love hurting Steve. What can I say, I'm a sociopath. So love it hate it, or apathetic about it, let me know. Or don't. whatever.