Disclaimer: I own nothing of Hawaii Five-0. Just having a little fun with Steve and Danny.
By: Vanessa Sgroi
Danny Williams sighed in satisfaction as he signed his name at the bottom of the final report with a flourish and closed the folder with a decisive snap. Adding it to the stack he'd just completed, Danny gathered up the folders and stood, heading toward Steve McGarrett's office to pass them off, gleefully adding them to the other man's workload.
He entered Steve's office just in time to hear a deafening sneeze. Approaching the desk, Danny took in the number of used tissues balled up and scattered about. He dropped the files in an uncluttered corner and backed away, making a mental note to locate hand sanitizer ASAP.
"You look like roadkill."
"Gee, thanks." Steve's voice was raspy and rough. He sniffed, snuffled, and frantically grabbed for another tissue milliseconds before another sneeze exploded.
"You should go home."
"Too much to do."
"Yeah, I'm sure all that paperwork on your desk is a matter of life and death."
Steve cleared his throat, grimaced. "Somebody's gotta do it." He pushed one overstuffed folder out of the way and grabbed another, glowering at the stack Danny had just deposited on his desk.
"C'mon. It can wait a couple of days, right?"
"Not according to the governor."
"I think even the governor would understand you're sick."
"Don't bet on it," croaked Steve. "Besides, I'm fine."
Danny snorted. "Fine?"
"Clearly your definition and my definition of that word don't match. Look at you—you're a mess. Red nose, watery eyes, hair—what there is of it—sticking up at odd angles, snot running from your nose…" the detective broke off as a used tissue bounced off his chest.
"Did you—wait—did you just throw a used tissue at me?" Danny grimaced and his lip curled. He brushed at his shirt even though the tissue had long since journeyed to the floor.
"Yes." McGarrett sat back in his chair and crossed his arms, his mouth drawn in to a defiant pout. In truth he felt like absolute crap and having his partner point out how bad he looked certainly wasn't helping.
"Damn, you know what—you really are a Neanderthal," groused Danny. "Look, let me put it another way, Mr. SuperSeal," he continued, his arms beginning their dance of emphasis, "YOU being HERE is increasing MY chances of becoming infected. And seeing as how I have Gracie this coming weekend, I'D rather NOT be sick—thank you very much!"
McGarrett watched as Danny ranted and realized the other man's flailing arms were making him feel dizzy. He fought the urge to close his eyes completely, narrowed his gaze instead and focused solely on the tip of Danny's nose. He waited for the other man to take a breath before cutting in. "You done?"
"Done? DONE? No, I'm not done. Because I don't see you standing up and vacating the building!"
"No. Your germy-ness is officially blackballed. Go home."
Steve pinched the bridge of his nose as his headache spiked behind his eyes. He knew Danny had a point, but he was loathe to walk away from his responsibility or worse burden his team with extra work. Not to mention he hated the thought that a stupid cold could possibly bring him to his knees. But another bout of miserable coughing brought him around. Steve wiped at his now-streaming eyes and stood with a congested sigh. "Fine. But you get to call the governor and explain."
"Done. Now go."
*H50 * * * H50 * * * H50*
He hated cold medicine. Really hated it. No matter what the outside of the box trumpeted when it came to relief, it never seemed to work on him, which in Steve's mind more than justified his typical avoidance of such substances. But he felt just awful enough to give it another try.
McGarrett downed two pills with a few sips of water before sinking down on the couch with a heartfelt groan. He turned on the TV with the remote, flipped around until he found an acceptable station. The former Navy Seal tilted his head back and closed his eyes, silently taking stock of each and every ache and pain as he battled, at times unsuccessfully, the congestion and postnasal drip to breathe without triggering another coughing fit. Lulled by the hushed murmur from the TV, Steve drifted off to sleep.
A short while later, the sick man woke with a start; his mouth bone dry and his nose more clogged than ever. Smacking his lips together in an attempt to coax moisture back to mouth, Steve ran a hand through his hair, leaving behind a new field of messy spikes.
Chicken Noodle Soup
Unbidden, the random thought popped into his head and his mouth suddenly filled with saliva. He remembered his mom making homemade chicken noodle soup for him when he was sick and the thought of it now—the comforting, golden broth brimming with diced chicken, curly noodles and carrots—sounded like nothing short of Heaven. Mentally compiling the list of ingredients in his head, McGarrett was pleased to discover he had most, if not all, of the items he needed in the house to fulfill his current greatest desire.
Standing, McGarrett made his way toward the kitchen, listing slightly as he felt the room undulate around him. Slowly, methodically gathering the stuff he needed, Steve lined it all up in precise order on the counter then placed a large stock pot on the stove. He began chopping vegetables by rote, his pace slower than usual given his unsteady state. Still, things were moving along rather nicely…until his body was rocked by a sudden series of explosive sneezes.
The knife slipped.
When Steve finally opened his eyes, he stared in surprise at the deep cut now marring his hand. The sharp knife had done a stupendous job.
"Well, damn," he mumbled to himself, "that's gonna leave a scar." He reached for a dishtowel to staunch the bleeding and shuffled off to find his car keys.
*H50 * * * H50 * * * H50*
McGarrett blinked blearily at his bandaged hand while reclining on the gurney. Underneath the pristine bandages lay a track of dark stitches, remedying the damage he'd so inadvertently done to himself. The hand itself was currently numb, but Steve knew it wouldn't be too long before the medication wore off and it would begin to throb.
Great—it'll be in tune with the rest of my body.
"Explain to me," exclaimed Danny as he pushed aside the curtain and barreled into the cubicle, "how is it that I send you home with a cold and you end up in the emergency room?"
Jolted from his medicated musings, Steve drowsily muttered, "Hello to you too, Danno."
"Don't hello me," grumbled Danny, "I'm serious—tell me how this works. I'm sitting there, at home, just about to eat a nice dinner when my partner calls me from the ER asking for a ride home! For a minute, I thought maybe you'd found a way to get shot while lying at home on your couch—which with you isn't out of the realm of possibility—but then I realized you wouldn't be calling me if it was something that serious."
"I told you it was nothing to worry about."
"Yes. But you DIDN'T say what 'it' was." Danny scowled. "And I always worry when my partner calls me from the emergency room. So what happened?"
"Uh huh—nothing. Which is why your hand now looks like a Q-Tip. Spill, Superman." When Steve still hesitated, Danny continued. "C'mon, tell me. How'd you manage to injure yourself when you were supposed to be at home resting?"
"I was just making chicken soup."
Danny eyebrows climbed to his hairline. "Making chicken soup. Oookay. Innocent enough, I guess. And how did it go from that," Danny's hands flailed, "to this?"
Steve huffed, resigned to the embarrassment. "I-I sneezed. And…the knife slipped."
"Wait—you sneezed?" Danny's hand flew to his mouth as he choked back a chuckle.
"Yeah, go ahead and laugh. I'm gonna cough right on you and give you my cold."
The detective quickly stifled his merriment at the threat, not completely convinced that McGarrett wouldn't follow through. Clapping his hands together, he said, "So you ready to go?"
"Yeah, as soon as they bring me my prescription."
"Prescription? I thought it was just a cold."
"Eh. Me too. But I also have a sinus infection and the beginnings of an ear infection."
Danny shook his head ruefully. "Geez, you never do anything half way, do you?"
It wasn't too much longer before the nurse came and handed Steve his prescription along with the rest of his paperwork. After she left, he slipped off the gurney and stood, gripping the narrow bed to steady himself.
McGarrett nodded. "Yeah, yeah—let's get outta here."
"Hey," Danny said as they made their way toward the exit.
Stepping through the door, Danny held it open for Steve. "The next time you get sick and want chicken soup—how about you get it out of a can like the rest of us normal guys."