Disclaimer: All Hawaii Five-0 characters herein are the property of CBS. No copyright infringement is intended. All characters engaging in sexual activity are 16 years or older.
Author's Notes: Wrote this one for a fic exchange on Lj. Cross-posting from A03
"No, no, no," Danny keeps muttering, over and over, as if he can use will alone to make everything alright again. If anything will ever be alright after this, that is.
Everything has faded into silence, but Danny can still hear the echo of gunshots in his head, and he knows okay, he is fucking intuitive, and there is something very wrong here. White-hot fear twists his gut, and he has to swallow hard, and take a deep breath.
They never should have been separated; fuck, he just got Steve back, he cannot lose him again. He won't, because living in his hellhole of an island is only slightly more bearable when Steven is around to make Danny and Grace do ridiculous things with him. He's not ready to let go, or give that up just yet. Or ever.
"C'mon, c'mon," he murmurs, slipping into the house carefully, quiet. "Where are you, babe?"
He'd known when he let Steve talk him into going into service range for a call with Grace that it was a bad idea. They were treading on thin ice as it was, and Danny should have known, but Grace was sick, and asking for him, and Steven had practically shoved him out of the door.
"It'll be fine,'" Danny growls, stepping into the kitchen with his gun drawn, grip tight around it just to stop his hands shaking. "Just go, Danny, I won't get myself killed, or blow anything up while you're gone." Danny snorts, pushing the broken glass of the sliding doors the rest of the way down with his foot.
"I'm gonna shoot you when I find you, Steven," and he would deserve it, too, and clearly they need to have another discussion on self-preservation, and taking years off Danny's life by doing stupid shit.
It isn't until he gets outside, and spots the prone figure at the tree line that he feels the real panic begin to rise. "Shit," he swears, his heart pounding double time in his chest, and he abandons the slow caution he'd been using in favor of setting off at a dead run.
He knows Steve, would recognize the shape of him anywhere, and that is very definitely his wayward SEAL laying there beneath a tree, and God, Danny almost slows down, afraid of what he's going to find.
"Steve," he shouts, can't help it because he can't keep the words in no matter how much he wants to. The knowledge that there might be danger is outweighed by the fact that it's Steve. "C'mon, babe," he mutters, sliding to his knees beside his partner, a little unsure what to do with himself at first. It's Steve, and Danny's never been good at separating his head from his heart when it comes to this idiot.
His training kicks in, though, and he takes several breaths in a futile attempt to steady himself, before gently rolling Steve onto his back.
Steve groans, and his eyes flutter open, glazed over, and he's obviously just a little dazed. Danny sags with relief, huffing out a loud breath. Not dead. "I swear, Steven," he says, and fuck his feelings, he doesn't even sound any where near angry. "I leave you alone for five minutes, and you nearly get yourself killed." He's been shot; Danny can see the place it ripped into Steve's side, and the blood, and okay, he's maybe feeling vaguely nauseous right now. Still, Steve is mostly alert, and Danny reminds himself to just breathe. Panicking isn't going to help anyone right now, and he needs to keep Steve with him, keep him talking.
"Not my fault, Danno," Steve mutters, wincing like the sun hurts his eyes, and great, okay, he probably needs to add 'concussion' to the list of things in his head he has titled 'Things Wrong With Steve'. Some of the entries are more permanent than others.
"Oh no," Danny counters, mostly just to keep Steve talking, and alert, and here, "I'm pretty sure it is your fault, Steven. You are a trouble magnet, okay, you attract people who want to kill you like flies, okay; that is totally your fault." He actually has to restrain himself from poking Steve in the chest, not wanting to aggravate anything else that might be injured, and from the way he's breathing, Danny's betting something's up with his ribs.
"Give me a status report here, babe; I need to know what's going on," he orders, gently cajoling, and he's still got a white-knuckled grip on his gun, leaning over Steve protectively.
"There were only four of them; low-level thugs," Steve starts, his words a little slurred, and Danny reaches out, settles one hand lightly over Steve's heart without thinking. "One of them got a lucky shot," he adds, which doesn't explain why he's out here, instead of closer to the house. It probably makes sense somewhere in Steve's head, Danny knows.
"Why were you heading for the trees?" Danny asks, looking up, watching the house for any signs of life; anything that might suggest there's still danger there.
"Dunno," Steve answers, and Danny knows that face; he sees it directed at himself any time he pisses Steve off. He likes to call it the 'confused, and frustrated with the world' face. "Everything's fuzzy; think I got hit in the head, maybe." Danny almost wants to laugh at that; Steve sounds personally offended by the bad guys getting the drop on him. He would; what with the whole thinking he's fucking invincible thing he has goin' on, and Jesus, what would he even do without Danny around to moderate the crazy, and save his ass?
"Yeah," Danny agrees finally, drawing the word out as he looks back down at Steve, eying him critically, "pretty sure you're a little concussed, babe." Not to mention the amount of blood already soaking the ground, which doesn't say much for their chances of getting the hell out of here before someone comes looking for their missing lackeys. "I thought this wasn't supposed to go down until tomorrow," he mutters, frustrated. That's what they planned for, anyway.
"Must have got leaked early," Steve says, trying to sit up. He hisses in pain, going white, and Danny swears loudly. "We knew it might happen, Danno," he adds, half-ragged.
"Yes, we did," Danny concedes, doesn't like it, but there's nothing he can do about it now. He heaves a put-upon sigh, and pushes gently with the hand still on Steve's chest. "What do you think you're doing, huh? Be still; you are not getting up, don't even think about it," he warns, his nerves beginning to fray at the edges because it has already been a day, and it is far from over yet.
"I'm fine-" Steve tries, and just; no.
"There is a bullet hole in your side, okay? You are bleeding all over the ground, Steve, I can see it, the evidence is right there. You are concussed, that does not equal 'fine' in any way, shape, or form, my friend," he snaps, glaring down at his partner.
Steve gives him a wounded look, suddenly reminding Danny fiercely of the little black puppy he'd rescued from a dumpster back in Jersey, and what even is that? He groans, rubbing a hand across his face tiredly. "What am I even gonna do with you, huh?" It's mostly rhetorical, though Danny honestly wouldn't mind an answer if anyone decided to suddenly give him one because he sure as hell doesn't know.
"You wouldn't know what to do without me, Danno," Steve tries, but it's uncomfortably close to the truth, and Danny doesn't really think this is the time to have that conversation with himself; or with Steve. Especially with Steve. Instead, he would very much like to focus on the situation at hand, and maybe find a way around how fucked they currently are.
"Okay," he says, and his evasive deflection probably says volumes to Steve about their….Them, but Danny resolutely doesn't care. "How long until check-in?" If they've missed it they're going to have to wait until morning, and while Steve's still alert, and awake, Danny really, really doesn't feel good about leaving him laying in the dirt, exposed to God-knows-what, and it'd be just like the idiotic goof to go, and get an infection, probably on purpose just to make Danny worry. He sounds ridiculous to his own head, but it's a stressful situation, okay, he is allowed. It's better than the other thoughts clamoring for his attention, like the fact the longer they sit here, the more blood Steve's going to lose, and Danny's pretty sure the bottom of Steve's shirt isn't doing much to stop the bleeding despite how much pressure Danny's been putting on it for the past half hour.
"Uh," Steve squints up at the sky, like remembering is difficult, and shit; Danny is an idiot. Steven probably lost a lot of time, there, when he blacked out.
"Right," he cuts in, pressing the heel of his hand to his forehead, "concussion. I should-"
Steve glares. "I'm concussed; not stupid. I haven't talked to Chin today, and it's just past noon, Danny, according to the position of the sun." Which, of course, obviously Danny should have known that. Excuse him for not being the Navy's Best Boy Scout.
He willfully doesn't comment, just sighs, put-upon, and turns to stare in the direction of the house. "So, we have about three or four hours until they figure something's wrong and send in the cavalry. Great," he makes a face, ignoring the twinge in his knee, and flops all the way down into the dirt. They aren't going anywhere for a while. "How long do you think it'll take until someone checks in on them?" he asks after a minute, waving a hand towards the four bodies that litter the safe-house.
"Danny," Steve says, completely ignoring his question while he tugs at Danny's sleeve until he looks down, meets his partner's eyes. "You should go; get into cell range, and call for a pick-up," he holds a hand half-way up when Danny's mouth opens on automatic protest. "Don't; don't worry about me. I'll be fine. It's not even fatal," he even tries a weak smile, and Danny's heart absolutely does not do some weird flip in his chest. It doesn't.
It's probably a good plan, and Steve probably won't manage to get himself killed in the meantime, but Danny has this irrational fear- who is he kidding, it's Steve; of course he would manage to find trouble for himself. The man is like a magnet for things that want to kill him, and obviously Danny can't let that happen. This isn't a hiking trip that's gone bad; there's a chance the bad guys could show up again any minute, and he's the only back-up around. Which, isn't that unusual, actually, but it just reinforces his belief that he isn't going anywhere.
What would he tell Gracie, anyway, if something happened to her Uncle Steve on his watch?
"Shut up, Steven," he says finally, rolling his eyes, and there's mostly affection there. "Like I'm going anywhere with you like this. One good shove, and you're done for; and if I remember correctly, which I do, you are the one that is always telling me I am your back-up. That's exactly what I'm being, right now, so forget it," he says, a little fierce, smoothing his hand down the front of Steve's chest gently, knows he probably has a ridiculously fond look on his face, if the softness in Steve's eyes is anything to go by, but it's nothing new. Just because they haven't done anything doesn't mean they don't know, okay, they are not stupid, or blind.
Steve just huffs a little, shifting, and Danny's been there, knows how uncomfortable he must be with the pain, and the ground, and it's not like Danny can just sit there and watch, and do nothing. He's just not built that way.
"Alright," he says, scooting forward in what is probably the most undignified way possible, until he's sitting at Steve's head, staring down at him severely. "Do not think this is me giving you permission to get up, or go leap tall buildings in a single bound, or find people to inflict you're usual level of psychotic hostility on, because it is not," he says, just to be clear, and ignores the amusement on Steve's face. "This is me," he adds after a tense, painful moment where he worries briefly that Steve's going to pass out, pale as he goes when Danny pulls him up. He finally gets them settled with Steve leaning against Danny's chest in a way that has definite potential to be embarrassing for them later, but Danny doesn't care, and he doesn't think Steve does either, if the way he shifts until he's comfortable, the tension bleeding out of him, a little, "helping you get comfortable," he finishes, a little flushed, and he doesn't have a name for this look on Steve's face. He's a little glad he can't see all of it; doesn't know if he'd be able to stand that.
"Sure, Danno," Steve says, easy, like this is something they do everyday, with the cuddling, and Danny's arm draped possessively around his partner, which isn't necessary because it's not like Steve is going anywhere. Danny just really needs to feel Steve's heart beat; to feel that Steve's still here. He's a little afraid he won't be, later, which is not even a little bit acceptable because it's not just Danny, and Chin, and Kono, okay, there's Danny's little girl, too.
"You better not even think about fading out on me, Steven," he says, mostly without thinking. "I am not telling my daughter her Uncle Steve died on my watch, okay, that is just not something I'm willing to do, so there is to be no dying, do you hear me?" He doesn't really mean to tighten his arm, and Steve hisses a little, making Danny start, and almost release him completely. Steve's hand grips his forearm hard, though, holding on, and he tips his head back against Danny's shoulder.
"No dying; right. Got it. Can't do that to Gracie," Steve mumbles, and it's alarming at how quickly the last hour has sapped his strength. "Wouldn't do it to you, either, Danno," he adds, just a murmur, and Danny's stomach tightens with emotions he could name, but refuses to right now.
Danny just sighs, stares out towards the safe-house tiredly, and wishes futilely that Chin or Kono would suddenly develop some kind of sixth Steve-sense. "I know, babe," he says, turning his hand palm-up, and letting Steve tangle their fingers together. It's not some big revelation, or admission; it's just them, and everything they have, and Danny is determined to keep it. He's pretty sure Steve is too, considering how he clings stubbornly on, refuses to let go, and Danny couldn't be more relieved.
He doesn't let go either, even when Steve is half-incoherent with blood loss, and Danny's barely holding on to his own frayed nerves, and the sight of HPD rolling in with their lights flashing, and Chin and Kono right in front, looking hard, and determined, and so very relieved when they finally stop in front of Danny, and Steve.
"What took you so long, huh? I was starting to think I was gonna have to rescue us all by myself here; what is that? Get this goof off me, and to the hospital, what are you doing? What are those faces for, huh, you're starting to look like our fearless leader," he rants, because he can, and it's familiar, and safe, and it makes them relax a little, grin at him as they wave the paramedics over, and let HPD cover the crime scene.
Danny can finally breathe again, and he doesn't hesitate when they offer him a spot beside Steve in the ambulance. He doesn't plan on leaving Steve's side for a while yet; can't bring himself to even think about it.
"I've got you, babe," he says, sliding a hand into Steve's, and he exhales loudly when he feels Steve squeeze his fingers in answer.