Title: Saving Grace

Author: Proclaim Thy Warrior Soul

Rating: K+

Summary: It should have been a simple task, taking Grace to the mall to choose Danno's birthday present, right? Wrong. Nothing is ever simple in the life of Steve McGarrett. He just hopes Danny can one day forgive him for this oneā€¦because he's not sure he can ever forgive himself.

Author's Note: *pokes head out from under a rock* Um... hi :) Long time no see, right? *gulp* Enjoy the chapter - hopefully there will be a few sighs of relief (if anyone's still reading!)

Chapter 10:

Accepting Doctor Kekoa's words for what they were, Chin Ho wasted little time in deciding their next move.

"Kono, find Security. Get them to check the CCTV outside and around Steve's room; let's see if we can find when exactly he left and where he might be headed. I'll check his room. We need to make sure there are no signs of coercion." Whilst McGarrett disappearing wasn't completely out of the blue, they needed to at least ascertain that he'd left of his own accord.

"Sure thing, brah." Kono turned to leave when Kala interrupted, confusion clear on her face.

"Wait. Commander McGarrett has a habit of disappearing from medical care, I take it? Neither of you seem particularly surprised."

Kono barely held back on her amused snort. "Oh, we just count ourselves lucky that he stayed as long as he did." With Grace in trouble and Steve holding himself accountable they should have anticipated this reaction from the very start.

Chin offered a polite shrug in answer to the doctor's incredulous stare.

"When you find the Commander, be sure to tell him I expect him back here within twenty-four hours. He's not fit to be out playing Navy SEAL right now," came the stern response.

"Believe me, he doesn't play Navy SEAL... But we'll pass the message along. Thank you for your time, Doctor Kekoa." Chin shook Kala's hand before following Kono down the hallway, leaving the doctor to resume her rounds.

"Do you think watching the CCTV from the mall helped Steve remember something?" Kono mused after a moment's silence, eyes scanning the walls and taking note of the locations of each of the security cameras.

"I don't know. With Steve anything is possible," Chin admitted, stopping outside the door to McGarrett's room. "Maybe it simply gave him enough information that he felt he could do some good out there, trying to find Grace, instead of stuck in a hospital bed. We both know how much he-"

A shrill scream from nearby drowned out the rest of his sentence.

Chin's hand automatically went for the gun at his hip, Kono an instant behind him as the sound echoed through the corridor, more voices joining the fray. Without the need for vocal confirmation the pair set off down the hallway, Chin taking point.

The screaming was soon replaced by distressed sobbing and raised voices, the ruckus growing louder the closer they moved towards the rear of the hospital. As they went, Kono motioned the scared and confused civilians out of the way, nodding her head in acknowledgement as two security guards tagged on behind them at the flash of Chin's badge, the men more than happy for Five-O to lead the way.

As Kelly rounded a corner, the hushed whispers from the gathering crowd warned him of what to expect. "Everyone, I need you to take a step back," he ordered, lowering his gun so it was pointing at the floor. Kono joined him, raising a surprised eyebrow at the dead body sprawled in a heap, half in and half out of the hospital doors. A single bullet wound to the head pointed to an obvious cause of death.

"Keep the crowd back," Chin called over his shoulder to the security guards, allowing Kono to take point as she stepped carefully over the body and headed out into the yard. "Call HPD and get them to send over a team. We'll need to start taking witness statements before they arrive; collect information while it's still fresh in their minds."

"Yes, sir."

Chin turned to follow Kono outside when he caught the sound of her distressed cry. Launching himself over the body and through the doors, the Detective found his cousin kneeling on the ground beside an injured and unconscious Danny.

"Chin, he's been shot!" The fear in her voice made his heart skip a beat.

Dropping to his knees, Chin quickly and efficiently checked for a pulse; the relief at finding it strong and steady more than enough to warrant a huge sigh. "He'll be okay, Kono. Go find a doctor. I'll try to stop the bleeding."

"I'm on it." The lithe officer was up and moving in an instant, leaving Chin alone to work on the prone detective.

A quick once over revealed no other obvious signs of injury so, after checking Danny's airway, he gently shifted him into the recovery position, turning his attention to his friend's shoulder.

There didn't appear to be an exit point for the bullet, which Chin knew could be a bad thing. When a gun shot wasn't a through-and-through there was a much greater risk of it bouncing around and causing damage to other organs... Chin prayed to all known deities that that wasn't the case here.

Deciding it was ruined already, Chin tore the bottom half of Danny's shirt into strips and used them to apply pressure to the steadily bleeding wound, his gentle ministrations enough to cause his patient to stir. Danny grunted as if being disturbed from a peaceful nap, his eyelids fluttering as he started to regain consciousness. Chin ducked his head closer and studied the man's pale face. "Hey, brah, can you hear me?"

His response was a loud groan as Danny finally opened his eyes, blinking owlishly up at him from his position on the hard ground. "Wha-? Wh't hap..n'd?"

"I was hoping you could tell me, Detective," Chin responded with a wry grin. He added a new strip of Danny's shirt to the already soaked wad under his palm and increased the pressure to the wound, earning a strangled yelp of pain.

"Ow!"

"Sorry, brah. Try not to move too much, okay? The doc will be here any moment but I need to stop the bleeding. Do you remember where you are?"

Danny screwed his eyes shut as he gave the question some serious thought, Chin's concern spiking as he watched the remaining colour drain from his friend's face.

"Oh, God, Chin...Steve!" The blond attempted to sit up despite Chin's best efforts to keep him still. "They took him. The van! There was a - where's my phone? We need to - oh, shit..."

Kono reappeared with Doctor Kekoa at her side as Danny collapsed back to the floor, his breathing erratic as a wave of dizziness struck him hard. Kala took over, gently moving Chin out of the way as a male nurse joined her to offer assistance.

"My name is Kala, Detective Williams. Other than the wound to your shoulder, can you tell me if you're hurt anywhere else?"

Danny swallowed hard, working to get his breathing under control. "No, no, I'm fine. Just my pride." Ignoring the unconvinced frown the Jersey native shifted slightly so he could see Chin and Kono, his voice tight with barely restrained panic. "There was a white van. I didn't see the plates, but there were three men in masks."

"Are they the reason for the dead maintenance man, or was that you?" Kono queried, biting her lip in sympathy as Doctor Kekoa removed the dressing from Danny's shoulder to take a closer look.

"That wasn't me, although it very nearly was. The guy was following Steve out of the hospital and he had a gun-"

"Wait, Steve was here?" Chin interrupted quickly.

"That's what I've been trying to say. The men in the van... They took out the phony maintenance guy and then they shot me for the Hell of it before grabbing Steve and taking off."

TBC

Author's Note: Only a short chapter, but I thought some of you might like to know that I'm alive and back writing (and I figured that if anyone out there is still reading this, then a small chapter is better than none, right?) I haven't abandoned this, despite appearances. I'm just lacking in any time to write lately (and when I do, there's a certain archer hijacking my brain!) but fear not. I am back and I *will* finish this. Now all I need is a few friendly faces letting me know that they want a conclusion to this darn thing... So, anyone still out there? PTWS