AN - Some direct quotes from the show were borrowed for this story. These quotes remain the property of CBS.
Sitting alone in his darkened office, the dark haired detective stared at the illuminated numbers on the electric clock on his desk, watching it counting the minutes; counting the regrets that made his heart ache. How did it ever get to this point? How did he mess things up so badly? When did he put justice before his family? How could he have hurt his only sister, who - he had promised his mother he would protect, so much? A harsh, heartbroken sob escaped from his throat and he brushed away the tears that began to fall again, blurring the bright numbers as they slowly clicked over.
Mary-Anne … his baby sister… the only blood family that he had. She had loved him, trusted him, and shared her excitement with him when she had fallen pregnant with Tommy. He had been the first person Mary-Anne and Tom had called at three in the morning when Tommy had been born. He swallowed hard as the memories of excited phone calls from her telling him about the first time Tommy had smiled, the first time Tommy had rolled and the first time Tommy had sat on his own were all interrupted and cut short with more urgent matters he had to attend with the latest case he was working on. Promises of returning her calls and visits to finally see his only nephew were often forgotten in the pursuit of justice. He always assumed she would understand and she always seemed to accept his dedication to his work with a smile.
He had been the first person Mary-Anne and Tom had called when the devastating diagnosis of Tommy's terminal cancer had been diagnosed. He could still hear the fear and heartbreak in her voice when she had told him, begging him to come. She needed her big brother by her side, then more than ever. And even then it had taken him two weeks to get there, two weeks she had to wait while he put his job ahead of her, sorting out the cases, making sure the office could run without him, two full weeks.
Oh God, why hadn't he gone sooner? Why hadn't he, for once, put Mary-Anne and Tommy first? It had taken just two short weeks for 'Dr. Fremont' to take advantage of the situation. Just two weeks for the quack doctor to give his baby sister false hope. And just what did he do? He had torn that hope away. All in the name of justice- all because he was a cop! He had broken his sister's heart.
Mary-Anne said… she said she had returned to Dr. Freemont. That there was still time. The 'good' lady doctor promised her … promised her … that she would save Tommy if he would stop persecuting her, if he promised he would not go to the trial against her the next week, would not testify. Mary-Anne had begged him not to do it, begged him to allow the 'doctor' to treat Tommy for just ten more days. "Just ten more days," she had cried, "was all that was needed for Dr. Fremont to save the baby's life." Mary-Anne had begged … his own sister had begged him to leave it alone…
But he couldn't, he wouldn't. His sense of justice was just too strong. He had the evidence to put Dr. Fremont away and to stop her from preying on more innocent victims, to stop her from preying on Mary-Anne.
When the phone call came, it had torn him apart. Mary-Anne had cried so hard, she had choked on her own tears; the telephone had turned to salt in his hand. Tommy was dead and she blamed him.
"Just this once," Danny had asked before the baby's death, "Can't you leave this alone?"
In the darkness of the office, his Second-In-Command's words and his sister's sobbing pleas echoed in his head.
The tears fell harder as McGarrett watched the illuminated numbers on the clock tick over, counting the minutes, counting his regrets. "I can't," he whispered to the now dark and empty room, "I can't just sit back and ignore the injustice being done. Not even if it means losing my sister's love, losing the only living family member that I have …"