This story takes place sometime around episode 2x9, but before 2x10, with implied references to 2x7 (the Halloween ep). Danny is still between motels/houses and living at Steve's. Clearly there's been a severe lack of Danny whump this season—this must be rectified!
As always, mahalo to JoaniexJony for being my lovely beta! Thank you so much for all you do!
This story is pretty much done—just finishing up the last chapter and completing the edits. As I think every writer over here will tell you, reviews tend to motivate us to write and edit faster, so leave a review—I always love hearing what you think!
Thanks for reading—hope you enjoy it!
Bad Luck and Trouble
Danny Williams was beginning to believe he was really and truly, honest to god, cursed. The evidence was piling high and it was undeniable. Why else would he find himself racing through a forest reserve on Molokai, on his weekend off, running after his partner, who was chasing after an escaped convict?
It was supposed to have been a simple hike through the woods to one of Steve's favorite super secret camping spots. It was so off the beaten path that not many locals knew of its existence let alone tourists. A relaxing cruise across the channel followed by an easy two mile trek in, Steve said, and then paradise. Admittedly it hadn't been the promise of paradise that had drawn Danny in. It was the appeal of beer and freshly caught fish slow roasted over an open pit that had sealed the deal.
Even more than the lure of good food and a few beers, a weekend camping trip with his partner had also been a way for him to forget about the weekend he should have spent with Gracie.
A weekend his little girl had opted out of because she desperately wanted to go to a classmate's slumber party. Yup, his barely nine year old daughter would rather spend the weekend giggling with her girlfriends than with him. His baby was growing up, and he didn't like it. He didn't like it one bit. How long before his little Monkey balked at his term of endearment, demanding he stop using their special nickname? How long before she demanded to be dropped off a block up the street from school, refusing hugs and kisses or any displays of affection? How long before the worship that shone in his little girl's eyes when she looked at him faded away? How much more of her life would he miss when the most he ever got was every other weekend?
Danny cursed as a stray vine slapped him in the face. He swiped angrily at the tears that sprang to his eyes. He could hear Steve crashing through the undergrowth ahead of him. Danny snorted - paradise his ass.
He should have known better. Oh sure, everything started off simple enough. The boat didn't sink in the channel between Oahu and Molokai. No bears attacked them on the hike to the lake. Danny had even made it through his first night in a tent without even a crick in his back, thanks to the portable air mattress he'd stashed in his pack. And then, inevitably, it had all gone to hell.
They'd been about to embark on a three mile hike up to a waterfall when a man had sauntered out of the trees about twenty feet from their campsite. Danny wasn't sure who was more surprised. The man, at finding two strangers on the lakeshore, or them when they realized this was no fellow nature enthusiast, but Buck Ellsworth, an escaped convict who'd been off the grid for the past six months. The man realized he'd been made about two seconds later, pulling a gun from the back of his pants and firing wildly even as Steve and Danny both dove for their packs, coming up with guns in hand and returning fire. Ellsworth fled into the woods, Steve and Danny hot on his trail.
A flash of orange to his right caught his attention. Ahead of Steve, Ellsworth had radically changed direction, and Danny swerved, legs churning, arms pumping as he attempted to get ahead of Ellsworth, effectively trapping the escaped felon between him and Steve.
Danny's boots pounded on a thin stretch of dirt he was sure even a deer wouldn't call a trail. In fact, it had more in common with an obstacle course, what with the stray logs and small bushes that were strewn across it.
He jumped over the debris, barely even breaking his stride. He'd just cleared the trunk of another small tree when he felt his foot land on something hard on the other side. He fell, crashing heavily to the ground even as pain, hot and fierce, shot through his ankle and shin. Danny screamed.
He writhed in pain, his eyes clamped shut, his breath coming in quick pants as his scream gave way to a long keening moan. Sweat popped out on his forehead. With shaking hands he attempted to cradle his injured leg. His fingers met metal, and a sick feeling welled up in the pit of his stomach. He forced his eyes open, got his arms under him and shoved himself up.
"Fuck," he groaned in agony. Tears streamed from his eyes and it was all he could do to remain partially upright. He'd stepped in a trap, and its sharp steel jaws had torn into his lower leg.
Blood was already seeping through his jeans, and his entire leg felt like it was on fire. He took a deep breath and tried to pry the trap apart. His movements jostled the metal teeth clamped into his leg and he bit back another scream.
"I am so fucking cursed," he whimpered, panting as he collapsed back to the ground, squinching his eyes shut and curling into a fetal position.
He heard the sound of twigs breaking as footsteps approached his position. Danny grit his teeth, forcing his eyes open. He'd dropped his gun when he'd gone down. He saw it glinting in the sun five feet away.
A throaty laugh had him squinting upwards.
"Well well well, what do we have here?" Buck Ellsworth peered down at him, tapping his chin with his gun in amusement. "Never expected to catch myself a 5-0."
"Drop the gun and put your hands behind your back – you're under arrest," Danny gasped, blinking away the sweat dripping into his eyes even as he continued to clutch at his leg in pain.
Buck dropped to his haunches, letting out a raucous laugh. "Well aren't you a funny little thing. So much bravado – I can't decide if I should just shoot you, or keep you around for the comic relief."
"Screw you, Buck," Danny panted, his lips curling into a smile. "I'm sorry," he chuckled, even as his blue eyes glared fiercely up at the convict. "Hard to take a man named Buck seriously. You really should make your momma pay for that one."
"Shut up," Buck's eyes blazed with fury.
"Oh wait," Danny winced, his eyes hardening. "You already did. And your ex-wife and five other innocent people you blew away in that salon. Tell me, because I really don't understand, Buck," Danny weakly waved a hand towards the escaped prisoner. "Most men have the decency to put a bullet in their own brain after such a display of murderous aggression. You a coward, Buck? Too weak to finish the job?" Danny coughed, closing his eyes briefly as another wave of pain washed over him.
"Fuck you, 5-0," Buck said, his voice like steel as he raised the gun towards Danny's head, his finger moving towards the trigger. The mass murderer stood up, cocking his head at the trapped detective. He smiled and then coldly raised his boot, smashing it down on top of the steel trap embedded in Danny's calf.
Danny screamed, nearly choking as the pain rocketed through every synapse and receptor. His vision greyed out and the last thing he heard before the world winked out into darkness was his partner screaming his name and the sound of gunshots.
"G' 'way, Stephen," Danny mumbled, "Screw the Navy – not getting up at 5 a.m. for a run."
"Open your eyes, Danny. Come on, open your eyes!" Steve's fingers patted insistently at Danny's face.
"Jesus. Leave me alone," Danny said indignantly, swatting at Steve's hand. He forced his eyes open. His vision swam. Green smudges swayed overhead. His stomach roiled and he clamped his eyes shut again.
"Oh no you don't," Steve lightly slapped Danny's face. "You've been out long enough. Time to wake up now."
"Shit," Danny ground out as waves of pain radiated out from his leg.
"Always have to go and aggravate people, don't you?" Steve commented lightly as he helped his partner to sit up.
"Had to do something to keep Buck occupied until you finally got your ass over here," Danny grunted, squeezing his eyes shut as the world began to spin around him once more. He sagged against Steve's chest, his jaws locking in a desperate attempt to keep his nausea under control.
As if sensing his partner's distress, Steve soothed, "Just breathe, Danny. Just breathe."
As the nausea subsided, Danny carefully opened his eyes. He spotted Buck's body about five feet away. "Nice timing, buddy."
"Come on," Steve urgently patted Danny's arm. "We've got to get you up and get someplace safe where I can check out that leg."
It was then that Danny noticed the trap was no longer attached to his calf. It lay several feet away, its springs in pieces. He pointed a finger towards it. "When did that happen?"
"You were out for a while," Steve gently pushed Danny forward, gathering his own legs under him in preparation for standing the both of them on their feet. "I had to go back to the boat to get tools to pry open the trap. Ellsworth busted it when he stomped on it."
"Please tell me a medi-vac of some sort, loaded with good drugs, is on its way to pick us up as we speak," Danny pleaded, white hot fire spreading from his leg as Steve bumped it in his attempt to prop Danny up.
"Someone busted the radio," Steve said tightly.
"What?" Danny craned his neck at his partner, staring at him in disbelief.
"They shot out the motor too," Steve kept one arm around Danny's waist as he reached down to the ground to heave a large black bag over his other shoulder.
"Who busted the radio and shot out the motor?" Danny gasped as Steve took a step forward and Danny's bad leg accidentally touched the ground.
"I don't know," Steve said tersely. "But I don't think we're alone here. Come on, we gotta move."
"Where exactly are we going, Stephen?" Danny tightened his grip around Steve's shoulders as he attempted to hobble forward, trying to keep his injured leg from hitting the ground.
"I know a place," Steve grinned, adjusting his grip to absorb as much of Danny's weight as he could.
"You know a place," Danny griped, glowering at his partner. "If you take me to a lovely cabin in the woods after forcing me to spend last night in a tent, we are done, Stephen. That's it, we are finished. Done. Kaput. Finito. Sayanara baby. I'm partnering with Chin from now on."
"Oh, it's better than a cabin," Steve wiggled his eyebrows mysteriously even as he began to pick up the pace. "Just wait."
"The only thing better than four walls and a floor is a five star hotel…" Danny limped forward, barely containing a loud groan. "..or a hospital."
"You're gonna be okay, Danny," Steve glanced around the forest. All was quiet. "Our team will come looking for us soon enough."
"Let's just hope they find us before whoever busted your boat does," Danny grunted darkly, a cold sweat beginning to stream down his forehead.
As the pain settled into a steady rhythm of throbbing fire, Danny stumbled along next to his partner. Oh yeah, he was cursed all right. He just hoped it didn't take his death to appease the angry spirits.