Title: Semantics

Summary: Danny and Steve have a discussion about the proper definition of the term 'gunshot wound'. Among other things.

Disclaimer: I do not own Hawaii Five-0 or its characters.

A/N: Quick oneshot that kind of spiraled out of control a little.

"You missed the turn."

Here we go. Danny doesn't bother to look over to Steve, who is sitting on his right for once – in the passenger seat. He just stares blankly ahead, pretends to pay more attention to the traffic than he actually does, because mentally, he's already preparing himself for debate they're undoubtedly about to have.

"Hm?" he acknowledges the comment, feigning innocence.

"You missed the turn. We had to take a right back there," Steve says, and out of the corner of his eye, Danny can see him turn in his seat, watching that street he thinks they should have taken grow smaller and smaller as they just keep driving straight ahead.

"No, we didn't."

"Yes, we did."

"No. We didn't."

"Danny, I'm pretty sure the Palace is that way."

"I'm pretty sure you're right about that."

There's a pause and Steve is clearly confused now. "Okay, so since you seem to be aware that we are currently driving in the wrong direction . . . why didn't you take the turn?" He's staring at Danny now, his expression a little pissed off and a lot confused. Danny can tell without even looking at him. It's the first stage of aneurysm face.

"I didn't take the turn because I very much intend to be driving in this exact direction right now. But thank you." Danny keeps the tone of his voice perfectly polite and he knows it will only serve to piss off Steve more, but he could care less.

"Danny," Steve says, as if it's a complete sentence or a valid argument. Danny understands the unspoken question just fine, though, but he thinks that, at some point, Steve just has to learn how to verbalize his thoughts properly. Like a normal human being does.


"Where are we going?"

"The ER."


"Steven?" Danny asks again, just because otherwise Steve will, in fact, never learn that SOP does not just stand for standard operating procedure. Subject, object, predicate. The basics. Baby steps. For almost two years now, but maybe Steve's just a slow learner.

"I told you I was fine."

"Yes, you did." But by McGarrett standards, 'fine' was really just a euphemism for 'I have still the capability to talk and tell you that I'm fine'.

"Then why are we not driving back to headquarters?"

"Because you are not a medical professional." Because the SEAL badge for battlefield medical training or whatever did not make him a doctor by any sane person's standards.

"Danny." Still not a full sentence and it's slowly starting to get really annoying.

"Yes, Steven?" Danny grits his teeth and keeps his eyes firmly on the road.

"I'm fine."

"You said that." Repeatedly. Like he always does. But that still doesn't make it true. Even though maybe he really was kind of fine. The fact that he was sitting up and talking was a big clue, but Danny was a 'better safe than sorry' kind of guy and yes, maybe he was trying to teach him just another lesson here. Because if you got someone shot, you don't just apologize. You also make sure they don't die from internal bleeding or something.

"I don't need a hospital."

"You said that, too."

"Danny." He'll never learn proper brain to mouth coordination and maybe, one day, Danny will give up on him. Today is not that day, though.


"I don't need a hospital."

"Yes, you do."

"I'm fine."

Yeah, he's not even dignifying that with a response this time.

"Danny." Never ever going to learn it.


"Why are we going to the hospital?"

"Because you are still not a medical professional. And because you got shot not too long ago and because you refused to let that very friendly paramedic check you over."

"I didn't get shot."

"Yes, you did." And how does he even have the nerve to say otherwise?

"Do you see a gunshot wound anywhere?"

"No, but only because you – very uncharacteristically, if I might add – refuse to take off your shirt." And that may have come out wrong, but who cares.

"Even if I did take off my shirt, Danny, you still wouldn't be able to see a gunshot wound."

"I guess that would depend on your definition of that term." And why exactly is he arguing over semantics with a guy who has less words in his vocabulary than pockets on his cargo pants anyway?

"It's not a gunshot wound."

"Okay, so tell me, please, according to Steve McGarrett, what constitutes a gunshot wound?"

Steve quite possibly rolls his eyes at that and huffs. "Okay, well, a gunshot wound is a hole in a person's body made by any projectile fired from any . . . projectile-firing weapon." An artist with the English language if Danny's ever heard one.

"So what if it's just a graze. Would you say that a graze would not constitute a gunshot wound then?"

"Of course a graze is also a gunshot wound."

"But it's not technically a hole in a person's body, so according to your definition, a graze would, in fact, not constitute a gunshot wound. And that does not make any sense."

"I guess it depends on your definition of the term 'hole'."

"A hole is a hole." Yeah, okay, so Danny has his less eloquent moments, too.

"Okay, Danny, then what would you say would be an accurate definition of the term 'gunshot wound'?"

"A gunshot wound is any injury to a person's body made by any kind of object fired from any kind of weapon capable of firing said object, usually, but not exclusively, operated by an idiot."

"Not exclusively?"

"I've fired weapons before, and so have Kono and Chin and a few other respectable police officers I have had the pleasure to work with."

"What about me?"

"No comment." Because there was really nothing pleasurable about Steve McGarrett and guns.

"Okay, Danny, but even according to your very open definition of a gunshot wound, there is still none underneath my shirt."

"I bet that, by now, there's a huge, gigantic bruise over your right collar bone, which undoubtedly would constitute an injury caused by the bullet you took to the vest, thus making it a gunshot wound requiring medical attention. Professional medical attention, I might add."

"I'm fine."

"That bullet packed enough of a punch to knock you flat on your ass." And to stop my heart in the freaking process, too, thank you very much.

"It was a pretty big caliber." And Steve almost shrugs, but it's more like a twitch, because shrugging is a painful thing to do when you took a fucking missile to the vest a little over an hour ago.

"Are you arguing for or against a trip to the ER right now?"

"I'm just saying that taking a bullet like that, at close proximity would throw anyone off balance."

"Oh, so this is about your pride now? Unbelievable." Danny shakes his head, because, really?

"It's not about my pride."

"Don't worry, Super SEAL. No one's gonna think any less of you just because your behind came up close and personal with mother earth back there."

"It's not about my pride."

"Okay." But what he's really saying is 'yeah, right' and they both know it.

"It's not."

"Ooookay." Yeah. Right.

"I'm fine. Really."

"Then why are you only barely moving your right arm?"

"I can move my arm just fine." And he probably can. Only that it would hurt like a bitch, which is probably the reason why he's not waving his arm around right now to prove his point.

"Then why are you not currently driving this car like you usually do?"

"Because you stole the keys from me, Danny."

"This is my car, which means that the keys to it also rightfully belong to me. And I can't steal what's already mine. It's impossible."

"You took the keys from me then."

"Which I only did because you can't lift up your right arm high enough to even reach the steering wheel – probably because that huge bullet managed to fracture your clavicle – thus rendering you incapable of safely operating this vehicle."

"I'd know if that bullet had fractured my clavicle."

"I believe that." Because if he had, Steve would be riding in that ambulance to the ER right now and not in the Camaro. The guy does use the term 'fine' way to liberally, but he's not a complete idiot either. Most of the time anyway.

"Then why, Danny, are we driving to the hospital? It's not fractured."

"It might be cracked."

"It's not cracked."

"How do you know that?" Because, really, how would he know that?

"I just know. Danny, it's just a bruise." Steve probably even believes what he's saying, but that's beside the point right now, because-



"So you admit that that very big bullet did, in fact, manage to leave a bruise?"

"It's just a bruise."

"Gunshot wound."

"It's not a gunshot wound!"

"We've been over this. It is, technically, a gunshot wound."

Steve throws back his head and probably has to bite back a wince. He does grunt a little, but somehow manages to make it sound annoyed instead of pained. "It's nothing worth fussing over."

"So this is about your pride." And no, Danny was not fussing. This was appropriate concern. Especially since his idiot partner was incapable of properly taking care of himself. Danny Williams does not fuss. Only, maybe, when Grace is involved. But other than that, he just exercises common sense.

"It's not about my pride."

"What, are you afraid the people in the ER will think you're being overly dramatic?"

"I would be overly dramatic because it's just. A bruise." And that really does sound like two separate sentences and Danny is somewhat relieved by that. Because it means that Steve is getting really annoyed now and that it won't be long until he'll just give up and admit defeat and do what any normal human being would, like, get an x-ray and maybe some painkillers.

"I don't know why we're even still arguing about this. I am not going to stop this car until we are right in front of that ER. You are welcome to jump out at any time, but I would advise against it, since it would clearly be counterproductive to your whole idiotic plan of not going to the hospital."

Steve sighs and slouches down in his seat a little. "It's just a bruise."

"Tell you what, babe. If it really turns out to be just a bruise, you can tell me 'I told you so'. How about that?"

"That's . . . not nearly as rewarding as you might think it is."

"What is that supposed to mean."

"I'm just saying-"

"What? You're just saying . . . what?"

"You're not right as often as you like to think you are."

"Excuse me?"

"Just because you won't shut up until the other person is too tired to keep arguing with you doesn't mean you're right."

"I would beg to differ."

"Of course you would."

"The only reason the other person shuts up is usually because I have managed to convince them of my opinion by using well-structured and logic argumentation. Now I can understand that you would have difficulties following the general concept of convincing people of anything by the use of words instead of high-grade explosives, but trust me, it has been known to be quite effective."

"You just yap people into submission."

"First of all, I do not yap. Ever."

"You are yapping right now."


"I'm sorry, was that supposed to be an example of your well-structured and logic argumentation?"

"I'm merely trying to express myself in a manner that your semantically challenged brain is capable to comprehend."

"Semantically challenged? Really? Are you trying to prove appoint here, Danno." And Danny knows that Steve emphasizes the nickname just to piss him off more.

Well, it's working.

"What other reason could there possibly be why you never listen to what I say?"

"See, that's where you're wrong. I listen to what you say. You just don't usually say what you actually mean."

"I don't think you want me to start saying what I actually mean."

"I don't think you even know what you actually mean."

"And I don't think that you know anything about what I'm actually thinking."

"Right. So who's the semantically challenged one of us now, huh?"


"You basically just said that you don't actually say what you think."

"I say what I think more than most people do."

"Yes, unfortunately."

"What is that supposed to mean? Are you saying that I talk too much? Is that what you're saying, Steve?"

"That's not what I said."

"But it's what you implied."

"It's not like it would be an exaggeration or anything."


"That's very eloquent."

"Shut up, we're here. Now are you going to go willingly or do I have to drag your sorry ass in there?"

Danny looks over to Steve, and he's just staring at him with that goofy smile on his face. There must be something he missed because there's absolutely no reason for his idiot partner to be smiling right now.


"Thanks for caring so much, Danno," Steve just says and gets out of the car.

Still sitting in the car, Danny just stares at him walk away for a moment, and okay, maybe Steve isn't the only one who is semantically challenged when it comes to expressing certain feelings of concern.