The alley was not the place he would have chosen to wait if he had had the choice. It was dirty and smelly and as the night wore on, it got cold, too. However, Detective Dan Williams didn't have a choice in the matter. The information they had received from one of his snitches earlier in the evening had promised them that the Johnston brothers, mainlanders that had recently come over to the island, would be at the hotel that night concluding a drug deal that would make them rich beyond the dreams of avarice. The snitch had been right often before and the Johnstons were a thorn in Five-O's side and Danny was now sitting in wait for them. Chin Ho Kelly and Kono Kalakua were waiting at other exits and Steve McGarrett was covering inside the building. HPD back-up was nearby.
Time passed amazingly slowly. Danny had scared off or fended off a couple of homeless guys who claimed that he had stolen their favourite sleeping spot. His badge was no protection in this part of town, but his gun spoke volumes.
There was no knowing when this was going to go down. The Johnstons had a lot of pull and although the hotel bar had closed a couple of hours ago, they were probably still inside celebrating. That was a mixed blessing to the cops. A drunk man might be more easily arrested; or he might be drunk enough to cause a whole lot of mayhem and there was no guarantee that everyone would come out of the action unscathed.
Moving slightly to ease his cramped position behind a dumpster that was smelling worse with every passing minute, Danny almost missed the shout through the radio. "They're moving! Back door!"
Back door – that was him. Danny scrambled to his feet as the door burst open and banged loudly off the wall. Several men erupted through the opening, pushing and shoving for position and Danny stepped into the small pool of light cast by a street lamp and raised his weapon. "Five-O! Stop right there!"
His words had no visible effect. The men kept moving, running at him at full speed and Danny realised that his gun was going to be more of a hindrance than a help in this situation and he tried to holster it as he was knocked off his feet by a man several inches taller and many pounds heavier than him.
Despite the hard landing, Danny grabbed for the man's ankle as he ran over the prone detective and succeeded in bringing him down. Forcing himself to his feet, still gasping for the air that had been knocked from his lungs, Danny threw himself down on the legs of the man he had toppled, hoping that help was just moments away, because he could see he had no chance of keeping the big guy down himself.
His captive was not going to stay down. He thrashed his legs violently, almost shaking Danny off onto the damp pavement. Gritting his teeth, Danny fumbled for his cuffs and managed to snag one meaty arm and snap the bracelet closed around the wrist. The arm was immediately yanked from his grasp and Danny sensed rather than saw the blow that was coming towards him, made all the more dangerous by the swinging handcuff. He ducked, while still trying to hang on to his prisoner. His gun had vanished somewhere in the melee and he just hoped that it had not been picked up by one of the fugitives.
The empty, swinging cuff caught him a glancing blow along his cheek and he felt a sharp pain as the skin spilt, but that was the least of his worries. The man was trying to throw him off and from the corner of his eye Danny spied his gun lying just beyond the reach of the big man. He knew that if the man managed to grab it he, Danny, was history. He lunged for the empty handcuff.
The big man batted Danny aside as though he were a fly. Danny rolled across the alley and collided heavily with the dumpster and sensed the man grabbing for the gun once more. Despite the ringing in his ears, Danny struggled to his feet and threw himself at the man again. His feet slipped on a piece of garbage and he fell slightly short.
It didn't matter. Help had arrived as a swarm of uniformed officers flooded the alley. "Police! Stop!" There was a positive volley of clicks as safeties were taken off as the big man tightened his grip on Danny's gun. For a second, it looked as though he would be foolish, but then common sense told him there was always a chance that he could beat this if he was alive. He carefully laid the gun down and put his hands up.
Catching his breath, Danny pulled the man's hands behind his back and finished handcuffing him. He sat down on the stinking ground and let his head fall between his knees. He felt absolutely pulped and exhausted. Various parts of his body started to lay claim to aches and pains and his cheek began to throb violently. He touched it gingerly and his fingers came away bloody.
"Danno!" Pounding footsteps indicated Steve McGarrett's arrival and he dropped to his knees beside his friend, worry etched on his face. "Are you all right?"
"I'm fine," Danny assured him, glancing up. "Honestly, it's just scratches."
"It may be many things, but just a scratch is not one of them," Steve replied acerbically. He visually assessed his officer and realised that Danny wasn't seriously hurt, but he was still going to the hospital whether he liked it or not. "You don't clash with Jimmy Johnston and walk away unscathed, aikane."
"That was Jimmy Johnston?" Danny asked, staring after the big man who was being unceremoniously stuffed into the back of a squad car. He had never seen his opponent's face during the scuffle.
"The very same," Steve agreed as he helped Danny to his feet. Drawing his protégé down to the better lighting at the front of the hotel, he noticed a few more scrapes and some tears in Danny's clothing. "His brother Mickey got away, but we got a few of their men." He made a face. "We'll get Mickey before too long," he added. "Come on, Danny, I'll run you to the hospital."
"I don't need to go to the hospital," Danny protested automatically, although his face was very sore.
"You're still going," Steve insisted, not relinquishing his grip on Danny's upper arm. He didn't really think his second in command would do a runner, but he was pretty sure that Danny was feeling a tad unsteady on his feet, regardless of his protestations of perfect health. "Chin! Kono! Can you finish up here?"
"Sure thing, Boss," Chin agreed. "Danny, are you okay, bruddah?"
"I'm fine," Danny grumbled. He wished everyone would leave him alone so he could sit down quietly for a moment. "What about my gun? Johnston had it."
"You'll get it back tomorrow," Steve assured him. "It's evidence at the moment." He glanced at his other men. "I'll get Danny's statement once he's been checked out at the hospital. Once you're finished here, head on home."
"Got it, Boss," Kono acknowledged. He gave Danny a friendly pat that almost knocked him over. "Feel better, bruddah."
"Yeah," Danny agreed dazedly as Steve towed him towards the car. One day, he mused distractedly, Kono was going to do him a real injury.