Betrayed and tortured Steve had been through hell. How was he really feeling at the end of Ki'ilua? This is a tag for the episode with added Steve whump and angst for Danny, as this tag is taken from the two men's POV.
Warnings: Mention of the torture and some bad language.
Disclaimer: I do not own the show, but I am available for towel girl duties (please!)
Many, many thanks to my wonderful beta and friend Sherry 57. You did an outstanding job as always!
And to another friend angstydaydreams - this is for you! I hope you like your tag hon!
Steve smiled because it was expected.
He owed them this life but couldn't find the words. Pain was coursing through his body and his head was pounding, but he was numb inside. Hollow, just like Jenna's words when she'd said 'I'm sorry.'
The eyes of his friend had held more determination than remorse. The gun in her hand steady as it pointed at his head. She'd known what she was doing. Had planned this day for a long time and the pain of betrayal, was as fierce and hot as the sharpest blade. It was almost as bad as the torture that had followed.
He'd always believed love to be a pure emotion, without guile and pretense. He'd been a fool. Jenna's love had turned into an obsession. It led the sweet girl with the angel face to do the unforgivable – trade one human life for another – his.
Despite everything they'd been through, everything she'd learned about him, Jenna had lied to his face, turned her back on their friendship and lured him into a trap. He'd only sought to protect her, but yet again he'd been duped by a woman. Worse than the betrayal she'd colluded with Wo Fat, the man she was all too aware had killed his parents. What was it with him? Was he naïve or just plain dumb?
She'd chosen to believe the word of a murderer and had paid with her life, just like Jameson before her. How the hell did the guy do it? Was it fear, or was he the best actor in the planet? Either way Wo Fat did what he hadn't been able to. Get them to trust him.
In the end she'd tried to make amends. An act of courage and remorse which she knew would lead to her death. When the shots rang out, his heart had stopped.
He'd heard himself screaming, shouting with rage, but time seemed to stand still as her body jerked, then fell to the ground. It was as if he'd been in a void, a fucking nightmare with no end in sight. Her bloody body and wide lifeless eyes still haunted him, but Steve wondered what would have happened if Josh had been alive. Would they have walked into the sunset leaving him to die in hell?
His friends were talking. Their voices were wavering in and out as his mind started to slip away. Deep down he knew it was over but all he could hear, all he could see were memories. The sound of his heart racing, and the malice in the dark eyes, as Wo Fat slipped the noose around his neck.
He'd tried to keep the anguish out his face. Tried not to show his fear as the thick, heavy rope was wound again and again, the restraint getting tighter with every loop. For a terrifying moment Steve had wondered if this was it, but in the end it was simply overkill. A ploy designed to make him afraid, a demonstration to give him a taste of the horror which lay ahead. It had worked.
They'd taken his boots leaving him barefoot, making his progress slow and painful as he shambled along the hard, sharp undergrowth of the forest floor.
How long he stumbled nearly choking as he was pulled, and beaten by unseen hands, Steve didn't know. As a SEAL he'd been trained in Torture 101. How to endure the worst if captured by the enemy - except nothing really prepared you for the real thing.
To keep his focus, maintain some small amount of control, he'd bombarded Wo Fat with questions, but the bastard barely acknowledged his presence. It was inside the bunker the real persecution begun.
The assault that followed was systematic and brutal. Knuckles like iron tore into his face, chest and gut. His skin tore. The audible whisper loud to his ears, as tears of pain and frustration mingled with the blood falling down his face.
When his ribs cracked, the sound seemed to fill the whole room. It was then barely able to breathe he'd been unable to resist as chains were snapped around his wrists, and he was hauled off his feet. He'd groaned under the fierce attack, but when his abused body was suspended off the ground, he'd screamed.
As the chains bit into his tender flesh, white hot pain shot through his arms and shoulders. The strain of supporting his own weight agonizing, as muscles stretched to the limits started to shudder, then convulse. His nightmare deepened when, not content to let gravity do it work, the abuse continued. They'd continued to hit him, again and again, with fists, their feet, punching and kicking. He'd jerked on the chain like a twisted marionette, his abused muscles screaming in protest, until the torture got too much and with a final yell, he'd passed out.
Hot searing pain jolted him to awareness, and to the fact Wo Fat had entered the room.
The evil bastard had just stared at him, expressionless, as he'd thrust the cattle prod into his chest. Every part of his body screamed as the current ripped through him. His teeth rattling, his body juddering as the taste of metal pooled in his mouth and ran down his chin. He could taste it still…
Danny saw his friend slump, and Joe grabbed Steve's shoulders.
Chin's worried look went from Steve to Danny. "He's out, brah."
The chopper was cramped with no room to maneuver, so Danny helped keep Steve partly upright, while Joe felt for a pulse.
White looked up and nodded. "He's alive. After what he's been through, it's hardly surprising he's checked out for a while."
Joe's news brought sighs of relief from the assorted crew, but a sideways look at the lined face showed Danny what he didn't want to see - concern.
The sweltering heat in the confined space was oppressive, but Joe nodded to Wade who stony faced turned, raked around and produced an emergency blanket. He reached over and carefully put it around Steve, covering as much of his body as he could.
Steve's head drooped to the side, and Danny drew in his knees to try and keep it steady.
His hair was matted with sweat, blood and dirt – but mainly blood. Danny wondered how anyone could sustain that many blows and still live. His face was swollen and bruised, deep livid cuts still seeping blood onto the chopper floor. His feet were filthy, caked in mud and hell knew what else. Danny couldn't take his eyes off them.
From the moment they'd met Steve was always in motion. He could be filled with rage at injustice. His face wreathed in smiles at one of his own bad jokes. He could even be the biggest pain in the ass Danny had ever met. But the dead eyes that looked back when he'd found him in the truck, could have almost belonged to a stranger.
His relief, his elation at finding his friend alive was starting to fade. Jenna was dead; Steve had been tortured - why? His spidey senses had been tingling when Steve told him where and what he was going to do, but none of this made sense.
Danny had suspected, but never really knew until the last couple of days what kind of life Steve had led before he'd joined Five 0. He was filled with respect, and not a little awe at the men who'd masterminded this mission. Even now they were using their medical training to tend to one of their own.
Danny didn't like sitting on the sidelines, but he wasn't alone. Chin, Kono and Lori could only watch powerless, as Joe and the other SEALs took over. Now he realized Joe hadn't chosen the cover of a medical transport by accident. He'd known all along what he would find. Danny was just glad the older man had come into their lives because without him, Steve McGarrett would be a dead man.
"How is he?" Danny's voice cracked slightly as he watched Joe change the IV. It was the third. He'd been counting.
Joe sat back on his heels and scrambled to his feet. "He's badly concussed, at least three cracked ribs but…" the older man turned back to look at his patient. "It's the rigidity in his abdomen that's worrying me."
Danny frowned. "Internal bleeding?"
"Looks like it," Joe confirmed, as he rubbed a hand over his head, "but that's out my league. I'm pumping him full of fluids to try and keep the bleeder under control until we get him home."
In response Danny just nodded, what else was there to say? The following hours the worst of his life as the journey home seemed to take forever. Steve's swollen face turned almost white, a stark contract against the livid bruises. Sometimes his unfocused eyes would flutter open, but just stare into space until they closed within seconds.
No one spoke. Everyone watching the wounded man as the scene played out in front of them. His head was bursting with questions. Questions only Steve could answer, and the more he thought about what had happened, the more Danny was sure he wasn't going to like the answers. Except right now only one thing mattered. Steve was alive, and he prayed to God, his friend was going to stay that way.
Malia settled her patient into the ICU, checked his vitals for a final time, then pulled off her gloves and threw them into the trash.
Chin and the rest of McGarrett's team had been waiting for quite a while. The surgery had taken longer than she'd expected. All she really wanted to do was get her man, take him home and start to celebrate their engagement in earnest, but it was time to put them out their misery.
When she pushed open the door, everyone stood to attention. They looked tired and anxious, but it was Chin she spoke to. "He's going to be fine."
The sigh of relief was audible, so she waited for a minute to let the good news sink in before she continued. "There was a tear in his spleen but I was able to repair it. There was some tearing in his shoulders too. His ribs are going to be painful for quite a while, but despite how the head injury looks we got lucky. The concussion isn't too serious."
Chin hugged her and she wanted to stay in his embrace forever, but she moved away with reluctance and accepted the thanks of the others.
"By the way, how did you say he got hurt again?" Malia's quizzical gaze took in the assembled group. "Because I've never seen a climbing accident victim with abraded wrists or burns on his chest." Malia stared at Chin, and the color rose in his face. Everyone else shuffled their feet and looked uncomfortable.
It was the older man, Joe, who spoke. "Yes, ma'am." He smiled, but there was a hint of steel in his voice. "I can see how some of his injuries might look a little strange, but he just slipped and fell. That's what's going into the report to the Governor. His tone changed in an instant, as the smile got wider. "Oh…I hear congratulations are in order – Chin's one lucky guy."
Malia glanced over at her new fiancé and raised an eyebrow. She would play the game and go along with the story, but she was no fool. Malia had treated victims of abuse before - usually women. It was clear Steve McGarrett had been tortured but by whom and where she didn't know, however she would get the answers from Chin later. They had no secrets from each other – not any more.
He hurt all over but it wasn't the gut wrenching pain of before. The lingering ache was still there but the fuzzy feeling and the parched, sore throat told Steve why – morphine.
There was a weight in his chest but when with sluggish, uncoordinated fingers he went to touch it, his eyes flew open "Gah...Nnnnghh…"
"Easy, man…Try not to move too much, you've had surgery."
It was Danny's voice and as the red mist cleared, Steve saw the anxious face of his friend watching him. He looked like shit. Tired as hell, with the dark bags under his eyes making him look pasty under his tan. Steve wondered how long he'd been sitting there.
"Thanks…" Steve croaked. It was a small word, but with his parched throat it all he could say to the man who'd raised the alarm and saved his life. It seemed to be enough, as Danno smiled.
Danny poured out a glass of water and put a straw to his lips. It tasted damn good.
"That's enough for now." Danny pulled it away, and replaced in on the cabinet. "Tell you what. In a couple of days if you've been a good boy, I'll smuggle in a beer." He smiled, but Steve saw his hand was trembling slightly.
There was silence for a moment as the two men looked at each other. Danny's eyes were bright with tears. "I found Jenna…"
Sleep had been pulling him under but at the mention of her name, Steve's heart skipped a beat.
His friend was looking at him searching his face for answers, but what was he going to tell Danny about the angel who'd saved his life? The same woman who'd nearly cost him his own.
Steve took a stuttering breath. "I'm glad you're sitting down, partner. I've got something to tell you.…"
It was a great episode - fabulous in fact. I just hope this tag did it justice - so please review.