Settings: season three
Summary: this is how I thought the episodes could've gone; basically the episodes are done to suit McDanno
Episode: 3x18: Na Ki'i (Dolls)
Chapter Word Count: 10, 347
A/N: Ever since I saw the end of Mohai (Offering) and I Ka Wa Mamua (In a Time Past)—the episode where Cath agreed to keep Doris' secret from Steve—it's been bugging me to write something about it. I didn't. But then, watching episode 3x18, the bug came back and bit me even harder. I like Cath, have nothing against her, but she seriously messed up the moment she chose Doris—who she barely knows—over Steve. And I don't know if anyone else saw it, but Steve's face at the end of the episode when he hugged Cath, you knew, you just knew that something had changed in their relationship. But anyway, enough rambling, on with the story…enjoy!
Disclaimer: Hawaii Five-0 and all its affiliates belong to CBS Productions, 101st Street Productions and Kurtzman Orci Paper Productions and it is based off of the original series by Leonard Freeman. No trademark or copyright infringement is intended and no money is being made from this story. In other words, I DO NOT own.
"Steve?" Danny called out as he opened the door to the McGarrett house. He needed to talk to Steve. For the last few days, the SEAL had been acting strange. He knew that he and Catherine had had an argument—though he had no idea what it had been about—and at the funeral a few days ago, Steve had chosen to stand next to Danny and not Cath. To anyone else, it might've been nothing, but Danny knew Steve. The man didn't do anything without having a good reason and the fact is, at the funeral, Steve had gone out of his way to make sure he hadn't been standing right next to Cath.
Something was seriously wrong and he was determined to figure out what it was.
Getting no answer, he closed the door behind him and proceeded into the house. He called up the stairs and when he got no answer, he figured the only other place his partner was.
He went into the kitchen and grabbed two beers and then he headed straight out to the lanai.
Walking over to the chair that held the towel, he dropped down into it, placing the beers next to his foot as he watched his partner's form cut through the waves.
And as he watched Steve come out of the water, he could admit, to himself and when no one was around, that Steve was drop dead gorgeous. Even as a straight man he could see the appeal that many women, and men, found about his partner.
"Hey," Steve called out when he was close enough, drawing Danny from his inner musings.
"Hey," Danny responded in kind as he grabbed a beer and held it out to the SEAL.
"Thanks," Steve said as he took the drink and dropped into the chair next to Danny.
The two stayed quiet, both enjoying each other's presence, but after a while, Danny felt the need to break it.
"So," the blond detective said, "You want to tell me what's going on between you and Cath?"
Steve tensed slightly before he forced himself to relax, "What do you mean?"
Danny turned and raised an eyebrow, "Really Steven, really? You really want to play that game? Which is pretty stupid considering, one, I'm not blind and two, I know you and I can read your moods and I know that something is seriously bothering you and whatever it is, it has to do with Catherine, so again I ask—and please, please do not insult my intelligence by saying there's nothing wrong—what's going on?"
Steve sighed. Of course Danny wouldn't have bought that. In the three years they've known each other, Danny had come to know him better than anyone, sometimes even himself. So he should've known that the shorter man would've picked up on something and that he wouldn't stop until he found out what it was.
And deep down, Steve he knew he would've told Danny anyways. Unless it had to do with his SEAL career, where majority of the things were classified, there was nothing that Danny didn't know about him or that he wouldn't tell him.
So, he spilled everything; about what Doris had done and Catherine's part in it. When he was done, he looked at his partner.
"So did you think I overreacted?" Steve asked.
"Ok," Danny shifted in his seat to see Steve better, "I'm gonna play devil's advocate here, but you know Cath didn't mean to betray you, right?"
"I know that Danny!" Steve shouted, "But the point is, she did! She should've known better! Let me ask you this; if it had been you, would you have kept it a secret from me?"
Danny shifted his gaze to the ocean and thought on Steve's question; the truth was he could understand why Cath had done what she did. She cared about Steve and Doris was Steve's mother, so she probably thought she was doing a good thing and he probably would've done the same thing, but…
"No," Danny admitted, "I wouldn't have. Doris is your mother, and I get that, I really do. But Steve, you know I don't trust her. She was CIA and she purposely made you believe she was dead. If it had been me, if I had seen her do whatever Cath saw her do, I would've told you. I've known Joe longer than I've known Doris and while I am thankful that he had helped in getting us to Korea to get you, I never trusted the man. I still don't trust him. I tolerated him because you did."
"And that's my point Danny," Steve said. "Catherine knows me. She's known me longer than she's known my mother and she never should've kept that secret."
"So what are you going to do?" Danny asked as he sipped his beer.
"I don't know yet," Steve sighed, "I'm just so angry at Cath and at my mother."
"Well whatever you decide," Danny said, "despite my better judgement, I will support you."
Steve smiled at him, "Thanks."
Two days later, Steve was cleaning his gun when the phone rang. The ID showed it was Mary.
"Hey big brother," Mary greeted, "What are you doing?"
"Just cleaning my gun," Steve replied, "Why? What's up?"
"Nothing much," Mary answered, "I just called to check in. So, anything new with you? How are things with you and Catherine?"
Steve sighed and fell back against the couch.
"Steve?" Mary frowned at the sigh. "What is it?"
"Cath and I may be over," Steve told her.
"What? Why?" Mary asked. She was shocked. Last time she had spoken to her brother, he and Catherine seemed happy.
Steve ran a hand over his face as he told his sister what had happened.
"Oh wow," Mary breathed out. "Are you serious?"
"Yeah, I'm serious," Steve snapped, "Why would I lie about something like that?"
"Ok, ok, sorry," Mary said, "no need to snap."
"Sorry Mare," Steve sighed, "It's just been hectic."
"What does Danny think?" Mary asked.
Steve frowned, "Why do you want to know and why would you ask that?"
"Because you tell Danny everything, duh," Mary rolled her eyes. For being a SEAL and probably one of the smartest people she'd ever known, her brother was an idiot sometimes. "So what does he think?"
Steve ignored the comment and relayed Danny's reaction.
"I agree with him," Mary said, "I mean, I'm glad that mom's alive and back, you know? But come on, she could've found some way to let us know she was ok, but she didn't. She chose to let us believe she was dead. Yeah, I understand she did it to protect us, but the same way she managed to stay hidden for twenty years, she could've contacted us. If she came to me and asked me to keep something from you, I wouldn't do it. I know you; I've been around you longer. My loyalty is to you, not her. I trust you, not her."
Steve was touched and awed by Mary's words, though he knew he shouldn't be. "I don't get why Catherine didn't get that. She should've told me. And Doris, she should've known better than to ask that of Cath, but no, she used the fact that she was my mother."
"I'm sorry Steve," Mary said. "I know how much you cared about Catherine and to know she did this. Like Danny said, I could understand where she was coming from in doing this, but at the same time, she knows how you feel about betrayal and keeping secrets, especially ones where she knew you were searching for answers."
"Yeah," Steve ran a hand over his face. "And now I have to think; I trust Cath, professionally and as a friend, but as my girlfriend, I don't think I do anymore."
"Well you can't be with someone you don't trust," Mary reasoned, "relationships don't work like that. If you can't trust Cath, then don't be with her."
"I thought you liked her," Steve said, "I would've thought you'd be telling me not to be too hasty and to forgive her."
"I do like Catherine," Mary said, "but like I told you; my loyalty is to you. Cath is a great girl and all, but, if she could keep this secret for Doris from you, knowing that you're desperate to find out what Doris is up, has been up to, then what else would she keep secret?"
And that was the problem. It was the same question Steve had asked himself the moment he found out Catherine had kept Doris' secret.
"Who knows?" Mary mused, a grin on her face, "maybe now you and Danny can finally be a couple."
It wasn't the sudden change in topic that threw Steve; it was the new topic itself. "Wait…what? Me and Danny? There is no me and Danny."
Mary snorted, "Please. Steve, you and Danny have been dating since you met but neither one of you realizes it. He's the first one you call whenever something happens; you go out to eat together; he sleeps over; his daughter completely adores you; he walks into the house like he lives there; he can tell how you're feeling by just looking at you; he calls you "babe", you're the only one he allows to call him "Danno". Steve, when I first met Danny, I had seriously thought the two of you were together. And then I met Catherine and I saw how you were, but then I saw all of you together and I still thought that you and Danny were the couple. In fact, everyone on the island seems to think the two of you are together."
"I'm not gay," Steve protested, "and neither is Danny. And all of those could be explained away; we go out to eat as a team, Grace likes everyone, of cour—
"Uh huh," Mary cut him off, now completely amused by the topic, "And how often was it a group thing and how often was it just you and Danny alone, with one of you paying?"
Steve frowned, "Well—
"And as for Grace," Mary continued, "I know she likes everyone, but come on, you don't realize that she likes you best? Steve, that little girl is more comfortable and closer to you than she is to Kono and Chin and I know she loves them. Seeing you, Danny and Grace is like watching a family together."
"Steve," Mary cut him off again, "he's the first person you go to when something's wrong, you drive his car, despite having your truck, and it's just the way you two are with each other. Danny knows you Steve; he's stood by you and despite his protests, he still stands by you, no matter what. He knows your moods, he can always get you to talk, and he calms you down and is able to bring you out of one of your moods. No one else can do that; not even me and I'm your sister. He's also the only I know that doesn't take your bull and he's not afraid to call you out on it. He would let you have it if you deserve it, but he would still defend you and he would still follow you, even if what you're doing is wrong."
Mary chuckled, "You and Danny act like a married couple, even if neither one of you realizes it."
Steve remained silent as Mary's words settled in his mind.
"Hey I've got to go," Mary said, "but call me later to let me know what's going on. And think about what I said. I just want you to be happy Steve. You deserve it. I love you."
"I love you too," Steve replied and then he hung up. He leaned back against the couch as he replayed his sister's words over in his mind. He's never once thought about anything other than friendship for Danny. It's not that he doesn't know Danny's a good looking guy. He's seen the way women ogle his best friend when the blond wasn't paying attention. And if he was honest, he'd been in one or two situations where guys would ogle Danny as well. But him and Danny? Yeah right.
Shaking his head, Steve refocused his thoughts on Catherine and his mother. Both Danny and Mary had made pretty much the same point; they had said exactly what he himself was feeling; Catherine should've told him. She never should've kept Doris' secret. Not when she knew he had been searching for answers for years now.
But the question was, could he really end their relationship over this? He had been angry, he still was, and he had a right to be, but was it enough to end them as a couple for good?
But Mary was right; what is a relationship if there is no trust? And if Cath kept this from him, then what else is she keeping secret? What else is she willing to keep from him?
Steve sighed as he let his eyes slip shut; he had a lot to think about and he had no idea what he was going to do.
A couple of days later found the Five-0 team in their offices doing paperwork.
Steve was sitting at his desk, and occasionally, his gaze would drift over to Danny.
For the last few days, Steve had avoided spending time with his partner and he knew that the others had picked up on it, especially Danny. He knew that Chin and Kono knew about what had gone down between him, Catherine and Doris and he figured that they figured that that was what the avoidance was all about; his way of dealing with the information. But he knew that Danny knew it was something else, but what it was the blond didn't know.
The truth of the matter was, contrary to what Chin and Kono thought, he wasn't thinking about what Cath had done. Well, he was, but that wasn't the most pressing thing on his mind; not anymore. What was on his mind, was that conversation he had had with Mary; not the parts about Cath, no, his mind was more focused on what she had told him about him and Danny. It was all he could think about.
Not once had he ever thought about Danny like that, at least, not until Mary had said something and now, all he can do is think about it. It's why he had avoided his partner the last few days. All of a sudden he had found himself re-examining everything that had happened between the two of them; all their touches, their looks, everything.
And he had come to one conclusion; Mary was right. He and Danny did act like a couple, a married couple. And suddenly, all those 'how long have you been married' jokes don't seem so funny anymore.
'Jesus Christ, even Lori had commented on it her first day working with us,' Steve groaned to himself, 'have Danny and I been so oblivious to what was happening between us? How did we not see it?'
He wasn't gay. He knew he wasn't. Not once in his life has ever looked at another man nor has he ever wondered about it. But Danny was different. It was Danny. All he could think about was Danny and no one else.
He had even tried to look at other guys, but he had ended up comparing them to his blond partner, and then that had prompted him to think about all things Danny. And that's when it had sunk in; without him realizing it, he had fallen in love, not with Catherine, but with Danny.
Of course, that knowledge had prompted a freak out, which was why he ended up avoiding Danny, because Danny was his very male and very straight partner. Danny wasn't gay. He wasn't gay.
'Maybe I'm Danny-sexual,' Steve mused with a grin. You'd think he'd have a problem once he realized he was in love with his partner, but he didn't. After coming to his realization, he had done what he did best; he researched. He was pretty much a virgin when it came to anything homosexual, so he needed to know what it was about and what he would be getting himself into.
But ever since he had done his "research", he couldn't stop thinking about Danny; about he would look naked, how his lips would taste, he'd even went so far as to have sexual dreams about Danny—hence the avoidance.
He knew who he was and with this, well, awakening, he knew he would need control or he would've jumped Danny and that would've been a disaster. No, what he needed was to talk to Danny.
He'd had days to come to terms with it and to accept it, which he did because Mary had been right; no one knew him better than Danny did. And who better to be with than your best friend?
All he needed was to convince Danny of the same thing. It wouldn't go smoothly, but Steve was one thing if not determined and he was determined to have Danny.
'Danny's mine' Steve thought, 'whether he knows it or not, he's mine.'
Completely satisfied with himself, and his plan of attack, Steve stood up, closing the folder that he hadn't even paid attention to. Walking out the office, he let the door shut and called out.
"Let's call it a night guys," Steve said, "paperwork can be finished tomorrow."
Kono let out a pleased groaned as she slumped in her chair, before getting up and grabbing her jacket.
Chin chuckled as he shut down his computer and walked out his office.
And Danny sighed, "Normally, I'd be totally against this and think that this is some kind of trick from you to get out of doing your paperwork and somehow pass it on to me, but I'm too relieved to care right now."
"I know what you mean," Kono said, "I'm not even gonna question it. I'll you guys tomorrow."
"See ya Kono," Steve nodded to the girl.
"Not that I don't love working or being here," Chin grinned, "but I'm gonna head home, before we get a call or something. It's not every day we get an early night." He clapped Steve's shoulder, "Thanks brah. Later Danny."
"Later," Danny replied and then groaned as he stretched his body out, arms going in the air and completely oblivious to the look from Steve.
"Wanna come over?" Steve asked as he turned to go back to his office.
"Oh, so I guess the whole you avoiding me thing is over?" Danny groused even as he followed the taller man. "You actually want me around?"
"I know and I'm sorry," Steve apologized as he grabbed his stuff, "And yes I do want you around."
"Fine," Danny conceded, "but you owe me dinner and an explanation and it better be good."
Steve nodded, his eyes lighting up, "I can do that." he watched as Danny went to his office to grab his own stuff and then the two left.
Since they had both driven their own vehicles, Danny followed Steve in his Camaro. They got to Steve's house in good time, having stopped on the way to pick up some pizza.
As Danny followed Steve into the kitchen, he spoke, "Ok; you said you had an explanation, so explain. What the hell did I do to you that you avoided me the last few days? It's a good thing we had just solved a case and didn't have anything else to work on."
"I'm sorry," Steve said as he placed the pizzas on the counter and turned to his partner. "It wasn't anything you did. I've been thinking a lot about what happened with Cath and Doris."
Danny leaned against the sink, arms folded across his chest, "I figured that at first, but then I thought it had something to do with me."
"It did, but not in the way you think," Steve sighed. 'Why the hell was this so hard? Maybe because it's Danny and as well as I know him, I have no idea how he's gonna react.'
"Steve?" Danny called when he saw his partner zone out. "So you figured out what you're gonna do with Catherine and your mother and what did you mean not in the way I think? Talk to me Steve."
"After I talked to you, I talked to Mary," Steve said, "And she pretty much felt the same way you did. She said that while she understood, Catherine was wrong and mom never should've put her in that position in the first place."
"I agree," Danny nodded. He looked at his partner. He knew Steve better than anyone and knew there was something the man wasn't saying. "What else?"
"She said a lot of things that made me think actually," Steve leaned off the counter and started pacing, "and most of it was about you."
"Oh?" Danny's brows furrowed. "Steve, what is going on? What did Mary say to you?"
Steve stopped his pacing and walked over to Danny, standing in front of the shorter man, leaving just a few inches of space between them. "She said that you and I have been dating the last two years without either one of us realizing it."
Danny drew back in shock, "What?" he couldn't believe what he had just heard. He and Steve dating? That was ridiculous!
Steve stepped closer, "She threw me for a loop too. That is, until she started outlining everything. I thought about it, over and over and then I realized that she was right; we have been dating. We go out to eat together; you're almost always sleeping over here unless you know Catherine was going to be here; most times when Grace is with you, the two of you end up spending the time with me, I ask you to watch my house if I'm going out of town, the constant touches, the looks, the incessant need to always protect one another and to make sure the other is safe and the fact that you call me, and only me, "babe"."
Danny was shaking his head, "That doesn't mean we've been dating! We're best friends Steven!"
Steve smirked. He had no idea why he had been so worried. Yes, he wasn't gay and neither was Danny, but he did love the blond; more than he loved Catherine and in all honesty, he couldn't see his life without Danny in it. Danny was his and the sooner the blond accepted that, the sooner they could get to being a couple. After all, his research couldn't go to waste.
"So," Steve continued smirking, "how many of your male friends do you call "babe"? How many of them do you eat out with, just the two of you, and one of you ends up paying? How many do you snuggle up with to watch The Notebook?"
Danny, who had opened his mouth, closed it at the questions. Truth was, he couldn't answer them because the answer was none. Steve was the only one he did all those things with. But that didn't mean he was gay! And neither was Steve! He said as much.
"But you're not gay and I'm not either!" Danny growled, hands waving in the air, "I was married to Rachel for crying out loud and I have a daughter!"
"Yeah I know," Steve nodded, still not losing his smirk, "And I never said I was gay Danny."
Danny stopped moving and stared at Steve with suspicion, "What?"
"I've never looked at another guy. I've never even thought of another guy. It's just you. I don't want any other guy Danny," Steve stepped even closer, leaving barely any space, "I just want you."
Danny's mouth opened and closed without any sound coming out. He had no idea what to do with what his partner had just told him. Was Steve nuts? Was he drunk or something? Did someone get to him and slip him something?
"No one gave me anything Danno," Steve grinned, actually enjoying himself and the conversation right now.
'Huh…must've said that out loud,' Danny grumbled mentally. "Look, Steve you're not making any sense; just a few days ago, right, you were with Catherine and you were upset because of a secret she kept from you and now you're telling me that not only is your relationship with Cath over, but you're gay and you want me."
"Oh sorry, my mistake," Danny cut him off, "you're not gay; you're Danny-sexual."
"Exactly," Steve shrugged and stepped closer, finally removing all space between the two men. He leaned down, placing his mouth next to Danny's ear, "Tell me the thought hasn't crossed your mind? Tell me you're not intrigued right now, that me whispering in your ear isn't making your heart race?"
Danny could deny it, but he would be lying. Sure he had never thought about "them" before, but now that Steve mentioned it, it was all he could think about. And on top of that, Steve pressing against his body was wreaking havoc on him.
Steve was right; his heart was racing. He looked up at the man and unintentionally, his eyes fell on Steve's lips and suddenly, he couldn't help but to wonder how they'd taste.
Steve saw the way Danny was staring at his mouth and could practically see what the shorter man was thinking. He didn't smile, though he wanted to, instead, he leaned down slowly—giving Danny enough time to pull back—and kissed him.
Danny jolted at the feel of another man's lips against his own. He had known what Steve was going to do, and while he knew he should've backed away, he couldn't because a part of him was actually curious. So, he let Steve kiss him.
It was different. It wasn't the gentle or soft lips both were used to on women, but it wasn't rough either. It was just…different.
And Steve couldn't help but to moan. Kissing Catherine had been good, it was sweet and passionate when called for, but kissing Danny was electrifying. It was just like everything else with his short partner; hot, intense and wild.
Danny felt Steve's moan and moaned in reply. This kiss was nothing like any other kiss he'd receive, but then again, this was Steve and the man was completely different in everything else, so why wouldn't his kisses be different too? Unbidden, his hands moved up to wrap around Steve's neck and he pressed his body harder against Steve's.
Steve's hands fell to Danny's waist. The kiss was everything like he'd imagined, but he wanted more. He licked Danny's bottom lip, begging the shorter man to open up.
Danny opened his mouth with a whimper, which turned into a loud moan the moment he felt Steve's tongue touch his.
The two wrestled, but Steve won control; no surprise there. The kiss became heated and passionate the longer it went on.
Danny's fingers tangled into Steve's hair as he lost himself in the kiss. It wasn't until he pressed even closer, rubbing himself against Steve and feeling the answering hardness, did he remember what he was doing and he pulled away from the kiss; that and the fact that he was running out of air.
"Stop," Danny pushed Steve away, creating some much needed distance—on Danny's part—between them.
Both men panted as they stared at each other.
"What is it?" Steve asked as he moved to get closer.
"No," Danny shook his head and moved away from the counter, making sure his back was never to Steve. "We can't do this. I have a girlfriend and like I said before, neither one of us is gay."
"And like I said," Steve countered, "I know we're not gay, but I can't deny the facts Danny. And the facts are simple; I love you. I've been in love with you for a very long time, I just never noticed it. I do things with you that I don't do with anyone else; not Chin, not Cath and not Kono. I don't think about kissing or having sex with other guys…just you."
"But how are you so sure?!" Danny threw his hands into the air, "Just last week you were with Catherine and there was no doubt in your mind that you were straight and now all of a sudden you're gay?"
"Not gay," Steve corrected, looking completely amused, "Danny-sexual."
"Danny-sexual," Danny repeated, "oh for the love of god. You are unbelievable, you know that? Did you hit your head in the ocean?"
"No," Steve shook his head and then, raised an eyebrow, "Why did you kiss me?"
Danny sputtered, "Y-you kissed me first!"
"Yeah," Steve nodded, "but you kissed me back." He started forward, grinning when he saw his partner backing away, "You could've pushed me away, but you didn't. In fact, you moaned. You moaned real good and loud."
Danny flushed, "That-that is not the point."
Steve took another step forward. "That is the point. We kissed and you enjoyed it."
When he saw how flustered and panicked Danny was, and how the blond's eyes were darting around for an escape, he stopped and stepped back. "I'm not gonna force you Danny, I'll let you go."
Danny almost sighed in relief. He needed to leave; he needed to get out of there and be by himself and just think.
"But know this," Steve continued, "I'm only letting you leave so you can take time to wrap your head around us, because there will be an 'us'. I may have just realized how I felt about you, but it doesn't matter. You're mine Danny; always has been and always will be. You know me better than anyone Danny and you know that when I want something, I won't stop until I get it. And I want you."
For the first time since meeting the SEAL, Danny had nothing to say. The man was right; he did know him better than anyone and he knew how determined Steve was.
But he had to leave. It was too much.
Steve saw it and nodded, "Go."
Danny needed no further prompting and quickly left the kitchen. As he passed Steve, he held his breath, thinking the man would stop him, but he didn't and Danny couldn't tell if he was relieved or disappointed.
Shaking his head, he grabbed his keys and left.
Steve watched Danny leave, heard his car start up and then pull out and he sighed, releasing the tension he had been holding. Anyone else would've been put off by Danny's reaction, but he wasn't.
He knew his partner and he knew Danny would have reservations. He hadn't expected Danny to kiss him back. So, all in all, things had gone better than he had expected. Now he had just to wait.
He had no idea what Danny would decide, but whatever it was, he would respect it. Oh he meant what he had said when he had told Danny he was determined to have him; but if Danny convinced him that he didn't want him, then he wouldn't force him.
He would let him go. He just really hoped he wouldn't have to and that would Danny want to give them a try.
Danny walked into his house, closing the door absentmindedly. His mind wasn't on anything except what had just happened at Steve's house.
When he had gone there, that was not what he had been expecting.
Letting out a sigh, Danny headed straight for the kitchen where he grabbed a beer. As he drank, flashes of earlier came back to him.
…his hands around Steve's neck…
…Steve's lips on his…their tongues tangled together…
…the heat that rose between them…
…the feel of Steve's erection against his own…
"Stop it!" Danny hissed. "I'm not gay!"
He wasn't, but he couldn't stop thinking about the feel of Steve's body against his, or the way the man had tasted when they kissed, or how his lips had felt.
Danny groaned. "Way to not think about it."
He left the kitchen and walked back into the living room. Dropping onto the couch, he turned the TV on, but, his mind wasn't on it.
He couldn't help but to remember Steve's words;
'…how many guys do you call 'babe'?'…
'…do you snuggle up with…?'
Other things flashed across his mind; how neither of them had any concept of personal space when it came to each other, how protective they were of each other, the fact that he allowed the SEAL to call him "Danno" when he allowed no one else, not even his family—except Grace obviously—to do so, the complete trust he had in the man, how he gave up a second chance with Rachel to make sure Steve was ok.
The last one had Danny's eyes going wide. Rachel. He had fallen for her from the moment they met and even after they had gotten divorced and she had remarried, he had still loved her. The moment Rachel had given him the divorce papers, all he had wanted was a second chance with her. And when he had gotten it, he had passed it up to help Steve.
But that didn't mean he loved Steve…did it?
Danny groaned and let his head fall back against the couch. This was ridiculous. The whole thing was ridiculous; he wasn't gay, neither was Steve, and they weren't dating.
Seriously, if he was dating somebody, Danny would know. Steve was wrong and so was that kiss. It shouldn't have happened.
So then, why couldn't he stop thinking about it? The press of Steve's lips against his own, the wet heat of his mouth, the way Steve's tongue had ta—
"Damnit! This cannot be happening. I did not just get hard from thinking about Steve!" Danny growled.
He stood up and started pacing, "You know what? No, I am not gay and I have not been dating Steve and I do not love him. So the best thing to do is just push it all out of my mind and forget about it. Steve will do the same. He loves women after all; Cath is proof of that."
He nodded and grinned, "Yep. It was just a fluke. Just forget about it."
Unfortunately for Danny—fortunately for Steve—that was easier said than done.
The next few days were harrowing for Danny and it had nothing to do with their case.
Despite the fact that he had told himself to forget about what had happened with Steve, he couldn't do that. Instead, he found himself constantly thinking about the kiss and about Steve. And suddenly, everything the man did occupied his thoughts.
Before, he wouldn't notice the way Steve's clothes fit him, but now, all he could see was how tight the shirt was on Steve, how it clung to his body showing off his muscles, which would lead Danny to think about how those muscles would feel under his touch.
And that wasn't all; he even noticed the way Steve's Adam's apple bobbed whenever he drank something, and the way he'd lick his lips depending on what he was eating, and then he would remember how those lips had felt against his own and he wanted it again.
But he couldn't. Because he wasn't gay…and neither was Steve.
Still, he couldn't help but to once again remember what Steve had told him.
'…I'm not gay Danny…I just want you…'
"Danny, you ok?" Kono asked, drawing the man out of his thoughts.
"Yeah, why wouldn't I be?" Danny shook his head.
Kono looked around, mainly at Steve's office at said man, before looking back at her friend, "You've been distracted for days now. Last week it was Steve ignoring you, now this week is your turn. What happened between the two of you?"
"Nothing," Danny shifted his gaze so she wouldn't see his eyes. He hoped she would go away because Kono was worse than a bloodhound. She was a woman. And one of the best he knew and she always seemed to be able to pull things from him.
"Wanna try again brah?" Kono raised an eyebrow. "You know I didn't believe that."
Danny looked over at Steve, and something must've been in his expression because Kono grinned and nudged him.
"So you and the bossman finally figured it out?" Kono teased.
Danny spluttered and snapped around to face her. "W-what? What are you talking about?"
Unrepentant, Kono kept grinning, "That longing on your face; finally realized you have the hots for each other?"
Instead of denying it, Danny let out a breath, "You think Steve and I have feelings for each other?"
Kono snorted, "Duh! I've never seen two people act the way you two do. Why do you think everyone always did the whole 'how long have you been married?' joke? I mean, even Lori did it when she first worked with us."
Danny groaned. That is not what he wanted to hear. But still, "How do you know we're not just best friends? That that's all there is to it? Why do you think there's something more?"
"Danny," Kono said, "you freak out if anyone else calls you "Danno", you're the only one that can read Steve's moods and can get him to calm down, you follow him no matter what even if you complain about how dangerous it was, you let him drive your car, you stay at his house, he chose to go with you and not Cath to a game, you gave up the chance to meet your favourite football player to stay with him, he cuddled with you and not Cath when you guys watched The Notebook, you—
"Wait how do you know about that?" Danny cut her off with a raised eyebrow.
Kono waved the question away, "I have my ways." And Danny didn't doubt that.
"You guys go out to eat, just the two of you," Kono continued, "you call him "babe", something you don't call anyone else, you gave up the chance to be with Rachel to stay with him, and as for Steve; he trusts you more than he trusts anybody, he let you stay in his house when he's not there, he spends time with you even if Cath's not busy, he touches you more than any of us, he's ridiculously protective of you, and Gracie—though we're all protective of that little girl—but do I need to go on?"
"But he's protective of you and Chin too," Danny argued, though it wasn't as strong as a few days ago.
"Yeah," Kono nodded, "We're all protective of each other. But it's different—Steve's different—when it comes to you. Somehow, it's more. To be honest, when I first joined this team, I had thought that you and Steve were together."
Danny remained silent. Now he had Kono's words to think on as well as Steve's.
"You ok?" Kono asked.
"Yeah," Danny nodded, "just thinking."
Before either one could say anything else, Chin walked out of his office, telling them that he had a lead on their case and the conversation was pushed to the back.
By the time Friday rolled around, the case had been solved and Danny was tired.
With a sigh, he entered his house, closing the door softly behind him. Throwing his keys on the side table, he headed to the kitchen and grabbed a beer.
As he leaned against the counter, his mind went over everything that had happened since last Friday, the day Steve had dropped his bomb on him.
He couldn't help but to admit that he was curious. His thoughts had been all about the SEAL, but he was too stubborn to actually give in. He still couldn't believe that he and Steve could actually be together.
And then, he remembered what Kono had said to him before they had left work earlier;
Kono reached out a hand and stopped the blond. "Danny."
"Yeah Kono?" Danny turned to look at her.
"Look," Kono started, her eyes and voice serious, "I get that this is a big thing for you. I mean, you said it yourself you've never once thought about another man. But the thing is, you and Steve, you guys are different. When you're together, it's something else. I like Cath, I do, but Steve is different when he's with you than when he's with her. He's more himself around you…more relaxed. You guys could be so good together."
"Kono," Danny sighed.
Kono continued as if he hadn't spoken, "My mother always told me a few things about love; one, you can't help who you fall for and two, love doesn't care about gender or race or anything else. When you love someone, it's because of how they make you feel. She always said that you know you're in love when you can finally be yourself with that person, when you trust not only them, but yourself as well. All you need to ask yourself is if you feel that away around Steve. You'll find your answer in that answer." She squeezed his arm, "think about it…okay?"
Danny stared at her for a few seconds before nodding, "I will."
Closing his eyes, Danny asked himself the question. His mind replayed everything. The answer came to him and his eyes flew open.
Placing the beer on the counter, he left the kitchen, grabbed his keys and left the house. He got in his car and quickly, and carefully, made his way to Steve's.
Said guy had the Camaro pull in, so by the time Danny got out the car and to the house, the door was open and Steve was standing in the doorway.
"Danny," Steve said, concern in his voice, "Is everything ok?"
Danny said nothing. He just pushed past Steve and made his way inside. When the man turned, he made his move.
Steve closed the door with a frown and turned to stare at his partner. Before he could say anything though, he found himself pushed back against the door and Danny's lips on his. It took a few seconds for his brain to catch up to what was happening, but when it finally did, Steve responded to the kiss, letting out a moan as he dropped his hands to Danny's waist, pulling the blond to flush against him.
Danny's arms moved to wrap around Steve's neck as he deepened the kiss, moaning himself when he opened his mouth to let Steve in.
The kiss went on for a few minutes; both men becoming more aroused by the second, if the hardening erections were anything to go by.
Steve was beyond overjoyed by what was happening, but a thought kept nagging at him and it had him breaking the kiss.
"Danny wait," Steve panted out as he let his forehead fall to rest against Danny's. "We need to talk."
Danny groaned, but he knew the man was right. With a sigh, he pulled away from Steve and walked over to drop onto the couch.
Steve stayed leaning against the door until his breathing—and body—was under control and his thoughts were array. When he was sure he was sufficiently cooled down and clear-headed, he walked over to sit next to the man he loved.
"Not that I didn't enjoy that," Steve started, "but I need to know what brought it on and what it means."
"You're a SEAL," Danny rolled his eyes, "You'd think you'd be able to figure out exactly what it meant."
Steve grinned, but tried—keyword, tried—to suppress it. "I need you to say it and explain it to me. Just a few days ago you were against this. I don't want to get my hopes up."
Danny groaned and grumbled under his breath before letting out a sigh and turning to face Steve, "Look, you freaked me out when you kissed me the other day and told me all the stuff."
"I know," Steve nodded.
"You gonna let me say this or what?" Danny glared at him.
"Sorry," Steve bit his lip.
Danny huffed, but continued, "I've never been with a man before. Hell I've never even thought of guys before either. But, like with everything else in my life that you purposely disrupt—do not interrupt me Steven—you messed up that as well. I'd have to be blind not to realize how attractive you are; I've seen other people react to it. But I never thought about you like that—about us—until you said something, and now, it's all I can think about."
Abruptly, Danny stood up and started pacing. "The last few days have been a mess Steven, a mess. I thought of everything that could go wrong and all the reasons why this couldn't happen, why you had to be mistaken. But no matter how much I tried not to, I still thought about you and how it would feel to be with you. And then I talked to Kono and she told me something."
Steve couldn't believe what he was hearing. It almost sounded like Danny had changed his mind; that he wanted to give them a chance. He had to be sure. "What did Kono tell you?"
Danny told him what Kono had said, leaving nothing out.
Steve swallowed and gave a mental thank you to Kono. She had said exactly what was needed. But, he needed to hear what Danny's decision was. "And?"
"She was right," Danny blew off, "how I feel around you, now that I've thought about it and can compare it to every other person I've been with, it's not the same. It's different with you. Kono said, 'you know you're in love when you can finally be yourself; when you trust not only them, but yourself as well'."
Steve's heart pounded and he stood up, "Danny…what are you saying?"
"I'm saying," Danny stepped closer to the taller man, "I'm saying I want to do this. I want to give us a chance. I'm scared and apprehensive because I've never thought about another man, and I have no idea how it all works or even if we will work, but, I want to try."
Nothing could've stopped the smile or the joy that Steve felt, "You want to be with me?"
Shaking his head, Danny stepped closer to Steve and wound his arms around the man's neck, "Since you seem to have lost the considerable skill the Army," he ignored Steve's Navy, "gave you and what miniscule intelligence you normally possess, let me spell it out for you; I. Want. You. I want us to try this out."
Steve kissed him, "You won't regret this."
Danny groaned, "I'm already starting to." But he kissed Steve again.
The kiss went for a few minutes before Steve pulled back, "What about Gabby?"
Danny sighed and allowed his head to fall forward to rest on Steve's chest. "I guess it's over. She was a nice girl and I had fun with her."
Steve frowned above Danny's head and his grip tightened almost imperceptibly. "Danny, if you want—
"No," Danny cut him off, "Yes Gabby is a nice girl and I could've seen myself being with her in the long run, but I meant it when I said that how I feel about you, I've never felt that way about anyone else; and that includes Gabby. Plus, she's off island and I'm not even sure she's moving back. I want to be with you. I'll call her and let her know what is going on."
"Good," Steve nodded, "'cause I gotta tell you; I had no intention of letting you go so easy."
"Oh really?" Danny raised an eyebrow.
Steve scoffed, "Yes really, but you should know that about me by now. I don't share."
Danny shook his head, "God help me."
"So do we keep this to ourselves for a while?" Steve asked.
"Well Kono probably already knows," Danny said, "that girl is just freaky like that and plus she did give me advice."
"True," Steve nodded and kissed Danny again. He couldn't seem to stop.
"Would you stop doing that so we can talk?" Danny raised an eyebrow, "I swear."
"Sorry," Steve grinned, completely unrepentant, "can't help it."
Danny grumbled, but it didn't stop his cheeks from flushing slightly with pleasure. "Back to the topic; we have to tell Gracie. I'm not keeping something likes from her."
"I agree," Steve nodded, "I know how important Grace is to you, she's important to me too, and I wouldn't have asked you to keep this from her. We can tell her together. Have her over this weekend and then let her know."
Danny let out a breath, "So we're really doing this."
"Yeah," Steve nodded, but then he frowned, "Danny…if you don't want to do this, we—
"No!" Danny cut him off, "I want to, I really do. But like I said, it's scary because I've never done this before you and I don't know what to do or how to be in a relationship with a guy and I just don't want to screw this up because I don't want to screw us up."
Steve sighed and pulled Danny into a hug before pulling back, "I've never done this before either Danny and I'm just as scared as you are because you're best friend and if this doesn't work out, I don't want to ruin the friendship we had. But, I do love you and I do want to be with you. We can work things out together, as we go along."
Steve chuckled, "the truth is; nothing has to change between us. The only thing that's going to be different is that now, we can kiss and hold hands and have sex. "
Danny flushed. While he hadn't ever thought about sex between two guys, the last few days, it was one of the things he thought about a lot with Steve. He had no idea how everything would work, but he'd be lying if he said that the thought of Steve doing all those things to him hadn't turned him on. He hadn't had a wet dream since he was a teenager.
Steve's grin was predatory and he pulled Danny closer as he bent down to nibble on the shorter man's neck. "Oh Danny…" a nibble "you've thought about it, haven't you? I have. All I could think about was you. And how you'd look spread out on my bed…or bent over the couch…or on the counter…"
Danny groaned and moved his head to capture Steve's lips with his own. "You have such a one track mind."
"When it comes to you," Steve grinned unashamedly, "almost all the time these days."
Danny sighed, "You know we can't do any of those things; one, I'm not ready for that."
"I know," Steve interrupted, "I wasn't going to push until I know you're completely ready."
"Good," Danny nodded, "and two, you need to talk to Catherine."
Steve groaned and allowed his head to fall backwards. He knew he needed to do that; he and Cath needed to talk and not just about what was going on between he and Danny, but everything that had went down between the two of them.
"I know," Steve blew off, "I'll call her tonight and ask her to meet."
It was a conversation that was needed, but not one he was looking forward to.
Danny knew Steve wasn't looking forward to the talk, but it had to happen; just like he had to talk to Gabby. He had done the cheating thing once already and refused to do it again.
Besides, the sooner they both talked to the two women in their lives, the sooner they could move on with theirs together.
Catherine let out a sigh as she stood on the rocks looking out at the ocean. She hadn't heard anything from Steve since the funeral two weeks ago. Unless it had had something to do with a case they had been working on, Steve said nothing to her.
She knew what she had done was wrong, but she honestly had no choice. What could she have done? Refused to help Doris? It was his mother and Doris had been right; if Steve had known what had happened, he would've gone overboard considering everything else he was already thinking about.
She hadn't wanted to keep the secret, but she had. She had known it was wrong to keep something like that from Steve considering he was trying to find out what was going on with his mother, but if she was honest with herself, deep down, she had done because of Doris.
The woman was Steve's mother and she had wanted to make things good between them. She had wanted Doris to be like her, to be okay with her dating Steve. But it had all blown up in her face because Steve wasn't talking to her and she had no idea where they stood in their relationship or if there even was a relationship still; which was why she had been completely surprised, but hopeful, to get the call from Steve.
Footstep pulled her attention and she looked back to see Steve walking towards her. The look on his face was intense and completely serious and she was a little scared.
"Steve you have to know how sorry I am," Catherine immediately apologized, "I never meant to—
"I know Cath," Steve cut her off, "You're sorry. I get that, I do, but what you don't understand is that it changed everything! You kept something huge from me Cath, something that you knew I'd want to know about and you still kept it a secret anyways. I heard your reasons and I could admit they're good but when it comes down to it, you should've trusted me."
"I do trust you!" Catherine protested, not even bothering to wipe her tears, "She was your mother. What was I supposed to do? I wanted to tell you; I didn't want to keep a secret."
"But you did!" Steve told her, "You did keep it a secret, and it makes me wonder what else you would be willing to keep a secret from me if Doris asked you to!"
Catherine pleaded, "But she's your mother—
"I don't care if she is my mother!" Steve interrupted, "you shouldn't have trusted her because I don't trust her! The woman disappeared from my life for over twenty years. I don't care what she said about doing it to protect us; the truth of the matter is keeping her damn secrets was more important than her family."
Steve ran a hand through his hair, "You know Catherine, you know how desperate I am to find out what she's hiding, what she had to do with Wo Fat, what made her stay away from her family and you still helped her keep her secrets. When she asked you to keep that secret, it wasn't about protecting me, it was all about protecting her. The woman has been lying to me since she got here. Not once has she given me the complete truth! She doesn't care about anyone but herself! Damnit Cath! You know how I feel about betrayal. You should've known better!"
"I am so sorry," Catherine sobbed. She couldn't believe how bad she had messed things up. There had to be a way to fix this. "Steve, please, I can fix this."
Steve shook his head, "No, you can't because it's already done."
His tone was so final and it hurt. Catherine bit her lip, "And what about us?"
Steve sighed, "There is no us Cath, not anymore. I trusted you. I trusted you to choose me and you chose a woman you barely know over me. I can't be with someone who would do that. I've known Joe my whole life and I found out he's been lying to me for that long. He helped my mother cover her secret and you did too and I can't, I can't do that Cath."
"So it's over?" Catherine asked, though she already knew.
"Yeah," Steve nodded, "You want to know something? I called Mary and I asked her, I asked her if mom had asked her to keep something from me would she do it? And you know what she said? She said no; Doris might be our mother, but her loyalty was to me and not her. She said that as happy as she was to have our mom back, she didn't trust her. She trusted me. And that's what you should've done."
"I'm sorry," Catherine cried. She couldn't believe how wrong everything was going.
"I know," Steve nodded. He sighed, "Cath, I know ok, I do, but I can't do this. Because of what you did, because you chose to keep her secret, I'm always going to wonder if there is something else you're keeping from me. I'm always gonna wonder if Doris asks you, if you'll do it again."
"I won't," Catherine shook her head. She needed him to understand that she had learned her lesson.
"You say that," Steve said, "but honestly, I don't know if I believe you and I don't know if I can trust that you'd tell me the truth. And I can't be with someone I don't trust. I need to be with someone who will put their loyalty in me, who won't take someone else's words over mine. I need to know that I can trust my partner to have my back."
Catherine's breath hitched and she turned to look away. As she did so, a glint caught her eye and she looked up to see a Silver Camaro parked in the lot. She stared at it and then glanced back to Steve.
"Danny," Catherine whispered. She wasn't surprised to see the car or at the knowledge that the blond was there. The two of them had always been close.
"Yeah Danny," Steve nodded, "Danny wouldn't have done what you did. I trust him Cath; completely. He knows what happened, and he was on your side. But then when I asked him if he would've kept it a secret, he said no because he doesn't trust Doris either. He told me the only reason he had trusted Joe was because I did. Danny's loyalty has been to me from day one and that hasn't changed."
Steve turned to look at the car, "He knows me Cath, better than I know myself, and according to Mary, better than anyone else including her. The only time Danny has kept something from me was when Grace was in trouble, and even then it wasn't for weeks; it was just for a few hours. He knew I'd figure out what was going on eventually and he trusted me to be there, just like I trust him."
Catherine closed her eyes briefly and opened them, "I can't say anything to change your mind? It really is over?"
"I'm sorry Cath," Steve touched her arm, "I wish it didn't have to be this way, but it is. What you did is always going to be a bother for me and what kind of relationship can we have if I don't trust you?"
Catherine nodded as her eyes filled once more. She had no one to blame but herself. She had known, the moment she had agreed to do what Doris had asked that it was the wrong thing to do and she did it anyways.
"I am so sorry," Catherine repeated.
"I know," Steve nodded, "I am too." He bent down and kissed her.
And Catherine felt it in the kiss. When it ended, she whispered, "This really is goodbye."
Steve hugged her, "I'm sorry Cath." And then, he turned and walked away.
Catherine watched him go and when he was out of hearing range, she cried.
"She ok?" Danny asked as Steve got into the car.
Steve threw a glance to where Catherine was still standing. He could tell, even from this distance, by the shaking of her shoulders that she was crying and while it hurt to know that she was in pain, it wasn't enough for him to go back to her.
"No she's not," he answered Danny's question, "but I hope she will be. Our relationship may be over, but she was still a really good friend."
Danny nodded and waited for Steve to start the car, "Does she know about us?"
Steve glanced at him, "No…she doesn't."
"Oh," Danny looked out the window. He wasn't sure how he felt about that. He was a little torn; on one hand, he understood why Steve didn't say anything, but on the other, he couldn't help but to wonder if it was because Steve wasn't as sure about them.
"Danny," Steve sighed, knowing what his partner was thinking, and reached out to grab one of Danny's hands, "it's not because I didn't want to or because I regret this, but because Cath was already hurting over my ending the relationship. I just didn't want to throw it in her face or something; like, we're over and I'm now dating Danny. No. I thought I'd wait a few days, maybe a week, before I tell her."
"Good," Danny nodded, "because, she should know. She deserves to know."
"I know," Steve conceded, "So, dinner at my place tonight?"
"Are you cooking or buying?" Danny asked.
"Why? What does it matter?" Steve countered.
"What do you mean what does it matter?" Danny raised an eyebrow, "It matters a lot Steven."
Steve had to hide his grin at his full name and he definitely had to suppress his amusement as Danny went into rant-mode.
Life was good.
A/N 2: so what did you guys think? Review so I can know.