melissas_corner: (Steve/Danny)
[personal profile] melissas_corner
The next morning I wake up with Danny curled against my chest with his arms wrapped around my waist, his legs tangled with mine and his head tucked under my chin. The warm weight of him pressed against me and his smell has my dick stirring.

Deciding to wake him gently, I begin pressing kisses into his hair before scooting down enough to brush my lips across his forehead, over his closed eyes and down his cheeks to his lips. They touch, cling, break part and then go back for more.

He begins returning my kisses before he's even half-way awake. With a small moan, he shifts closer, throwing one leg over my hip and rocking his hips against mine.

"That's one way to wake up," he mutters when I turn my attention to the skin under his chin.

"Mm," I hum in response. I've been thinking of this moment for over two years.

"How are you today?" His question gives me pause. It is definitely unexpected at this moment in time. I mean, I'm trying to seduce him and he wants to know how I'm feeling?

I pull back and frown at him. "Why do you ask?"

"Because you're not emotionally recovered enough for this."

I pull even further back, almost out of his arms. "When did you get a degree?"

Danny sighs. "Steve, I don't need a degree to see you're hurting; emotionally and physically. We don't have to go there at this time. We can take our time. Like I had planned eleven months ago."

"I'm tired of waiting, Danny. I love you. I'm ready to show you that."

"Oh, Babe, you do show me. Not having sex doesn't make it any less true. We'll get there. Please have some patience."

"I'm trying, D. I've wanted this for so fucking long." I scoot closer and rest my forehead against his.

"I know, Babe. I know. But I want to make sure you're completely ready for this. How about you ask your therapist what she thinks and we just follow her advice about this."

"Yeah, okay. But in the meantime…" I wiggle my eyebrows pulling a laugh from him.

"Yeah, we can go back to what we were doing back before D-Day."

Cupping his cheek in the palm of my hand, I lean forward until I can press my lips to his. Our kisses start chaste and slowly increase in intensity and passion. He wraps his hand around my wrist, rubbing his thumb across the back of my hand.

I start to roll over to my back, pulling him on top of me when Grace says, "Ew. That's just gross."

We pull apart and look over at the door. "You're supposed to knock, Monkey."

With her face completely blank, she reaches up and raps her knuckles against the doorframe. "Next time maybe you should shut the door, hm?"

Danny points at her. "You, young lady, are much too young to be so darn snarky."

She shrugs. "At least I come by it honestly." I bite my lip to keep from laughing. "Right, Papa?" She turns to me and raises her eyebrows

I hold my hands up. "Leave me out of this, Baby Girl."

"Big meanie." She climbs up on the bed and settles down between us. "What are we doing today?"

"I have a doctor's appointment at 9."

"Then you should probably start getting ready. It's after 7." While she has a point, it'll be slightly difficult seeing as how she's using me as a mattress.

"For me to do that, you're gonna have to move." I tug on a lock of her hair.

She stacks her hands on my chest, props her chin on top and pouts at me. "Do I hafta?"

"Yeah, Baby Girl. This is one appointment I can't miss."

"Will you be gone long?" Danny asks while lifting Grace off me.

"No idea. Most sessions last an hour, right? So I'd say an hour and a half to two hours."

"Want to meet downtown for lunch?"

I roll from the bed and grab some clothes on my way to the bathroom. "Sure. You pick the place and let me know. 'Kay?"

"Okay." Danny ushers Grace from the room, leaving me alone to get dressed.

About five minutes later and I'm dressed and downstairs eating breakfast with Danny and Grace before heading out to Tripler and my first appointment with a psychologist. I have difficulty talking about important things and so don't hold much stock in someone who makes their living forcing people to talk about their innermost feelings and thoughts.

"Just remember this is for your own good." Danny presses a kiss to the corner of my mouth before sending me on my way with a swat to my ass.

"Doesn't mean I have to like it."

"Just so long as you do it."

"Love you, Papa!" Grace throws her arms around my waist and squeezes tight.

"Love you too, Baby Girl." I bend down and press a kiss to the top of her head.

This is really not something I want to do but since it's something that needs to be done I'm going to do it. The drive to Tripler is one of the longest of my life and I feel like I'm heading to my execution.

I've never been to a therapist office and so am a bit surprised to find the waiting room empty and no receptionist to greet me. A sign next to the door in the opposite wall tells me to press a button to announce my arrival and then have a seat. I press the button and take a seat, picking up a copy of Newsweek that's several months old. Flipping through the glossy pages, I try and ignore the building impatience.

After about ten minutes, the door opens and an unassuming thirty-something woman, her black hair pulled back in a severe bun with a pair of drug store readers perched on her nose and dressed in a tailored suit, the pencil skirt just barely skimming her knees, smiles at me. Holding out one hand she asks, "Commander McGarrett?"

Standing I take her hand in mine. "Steve, please. Dr. Anderson?"

"Please call me Julie." She steps back and waves me into her office. "Please have a seat."

"Anywhere in particular?" Her office is tastefully decorated in blues and greens with soothing lighting coming from the large windows and strategically placed lamps.

"Anywhere's fine. Except for the desk area." I turn and frown at her. "I find it more relaxing to sit in the sitting area next to the windows." She extends one arm in that direction. I make my way over to the grouping of chairs and one couch. Skirting around the couch, I sit in the chair closest to the window and startle a little when I sink into the plush cushion. "Good choice. That happens to be the comfiest chair in here."

"It is comfy." I do my best to relax. This woman only wants to help me get better. She is most definitely not the enemy.

She takes a seat in the chair opposite, crosses one leg over the other and holds her pen poised over a legal pad. "So, why don't you start by telling me why you're here?"

"Uh, well…" I run my hand along the back of my neck, hesitant to speak for fear of breaking confidentiality.

She smiles as if she knows what I'm thinking and her next words prove she does. "Don't worry about confidentiality, Steve. I've been read in on all your missions. Wouldn't be able to truly help otherwise."

I nod. What she said makes sense. "Well, ten months ago I was recalled to active duty to assist with a mission. Only reason I was recalled is because I had tracked this particular target before. Then four months ago my men and I were lead into an ambush. I was the only survivor and I suffered a TBI. While recovering in Germany the doctors began to suspect I might also have PTSD."

"A very common thing these days. And not just in returning soldiers. Plenty of civilians also suffer from it."

"Yeah, so they said."

"A soldier with your extensive kill list is bound to suffer from it. At least a little."

"They think I've had it since my mom died when I was sixteen."

She's been scribbling on her pad since I began talking but now she pauses and looks up at me. Guess that's not in my file. "Were you with her when she died?"

"No. I'm the one who answered the door when the cops made the notification."

"I'm sorry about that, Steve."

I shrug. "Dad was finishing dinner. Mom was late. Sometimes when she ran late she'd knock on the door like a guest."

"Were you close with her?"

"All four of us were sort of close."

"Four?"

"I have a younger sister, Mary Ann. She lives in LA, now."

"Do you see her often?"

"Not as often as I should. But I do talk to her at least a couple times a week."

"Good." She makes more notes, pausing to tuck a loose strand of hair back behind her ear and push her glasses up her nose. "When's the last time you saw her?"

"Last year. She was here for Thanksgiving and Christmas."

"That's good." She looks up and smiles. "I want to talk about your mom's death."

Tears are threatening again and I clench my jaw to keep from showing that weakness. "I don't want to."

She blinks, almost like she didn't expect me to refuse. "I'll let it go. For now. But to fully heal you are going to have to talk about it. You do want to get better, right?"

I nod. "I have to get better."

She tilts her head, her brow crinkled in confusion. "Why's that?"

"For Danny. And Grace."

"And who are they?"

"My partner and his daughter."

"Let's see…" She flips open a file folder. "That would be detective Daniel Williams, your partner and second in command of the task force you lead, correct?"

"Yeah."

"Tell me about them."

I find myself wanting to refuse again but ignore the urge. Julie's on my side. She's not the enemy, Danny's voice whispers in my head. "Danny's a loud mouthed haole from New Jersey. Only reason he's here is Grace. She's the center of her father's world. He dotes on her and she loves him just as much."

"And you?"

"What about me?"

"Do you dote on her?"

I duck my head, feeling a blush coming. "I try not to."

"Why? If she's special enough for you to want to get better for, then surely she's special enough for you to dote on."

"She's not my kid. Although I couldn't love her anymore if she was." I pause to look out the window to my right and try to get my emotions back under control. "See, I had decided I'd never have any kids of my own so I had little use for them. But then I met Grace and well, she has a way of worming into your heart and taking up residence. So, yeah. I probably dote on her more than I should."

"Again I have to ask why. If you're dating her father then surely it's not a bad thing?"

Panic flares in my breast causing my heart to start pounding. "I never said Danny and I are dating."

"You didn't have to, Steve. Your face and eyes soften when you talk about the two of them. Please remember that this is a safe space. Everything said here is confidential. And even if it wasn't, Don't Ask, Don't Tell was repealed over a year ago."

"I know. It's just…" My voice trails off and I take a deep breath. "We'd just started when I received my orders."

"Sorry to hear that."

"Yeah. And after a lifetime of repressing and denying…" I shrug and shake my head. "I've only told a few people. It feels too fresh, too new, too… fragile to just admit outright."

"Have you encountered any negative responses?"

"No. So far everyone I've told has seemed truly happy for us. Some have expressed surprise that I like men as well as women but so far no one has said anything negative."

"Good." She makes some more notes and checks her watch. "When did you realize that you're attracted to men and women?"

This is almost as difficult for me to talk about as anything to do with my mom. I get up and pace to the window, staring blindly out at the Hawaiian landscape. "I've played football all my life. By the time I was old enough to play full tackle I was better than the other kids my age, and bigger too, so I was put on a team with older boys. Most of them were further along in puberty than me.

"When I was twelve I discovered that girls were no longer as yucky as they once were. That fall I was dismayed when I had the same reaction to the boys in the locker room after practice.

"My dad was a straight laced by-the-book cop. I'd overheard him several times talking trash about homosexuals." I spin to face her. "I know I'm not gay, didn't know then of course, but there's no way he would have accepted me being bi-sexual.

"I quickly learned how to not have a physical reaction when in the same room with a bunch of naked guys." I walk back to my chair and flop down in it. "And then Mom died and Dad sent Mary and me away. She went to stay with Mom's family and I was sent to Dad's friend, Joe, who put me in military school." Shaking my head I lean back in the chair. "By then DADT was in full force. Repress and deny became my motto. From high school I went straight into Annapolis, then the SEALs. When President Obama repealed DADT last year, well, I knew I should say something to Danny but decided that New Year's would be better."

"That's actually quite romantic."

"That's what Cath said."

"Who's Cath?"

"Lieutenant Catherine Rollins, Naval intelligence. You could say if I hadn't ever met Danny she'd be the person I'd spend the rest of my life with."

"You had a romantic relationship with her?"

I laugh softly. "Romantic? No. Physical? Hell yes. Whenever we could get leave together we'd hole up in a hotel somewhere. We finally ended it for good after I met Danny."

"And she's okay with that?"

I shrug. "She wants me to be happy. Being with Danny makes me happy."

She nods. "She sounds like a good friend."

"She is. She's also been my support on more than one mission."

"Is that how you met?"

"No. We met in a bar in Bangkok."

"Tell me more about Grace. I'm guessing her mother's here."

"Yeah. After Rachel divorced Danny she married a man who builds hotels. His company transferred him here. Danny moved as soon as he could so he could be involved in his daughter's life."

"What do Grace and Rachel think of you relationship with Danny?"

"Grace loves it. She's been calling me Uncle Steve for over a year and now that Danny and I are filing for domestic partnership status, she calls me Papa."

Julie smiles at me. "And Rachel?"

"Well, Rachel does things she thinks are in Grace's best interest without thinking of how they affect Danny."

"Stop deflecting, Steve. How does Rachel feel about your relationship with her ex husband?"

I squirm a bit in my seat. The truth is that despite what she says, I'm pretty sure Rachel wouldn't hesitate to use me against Danny is she felt she needed to. "She says she's fine with it. She's known that Danny's bi-sexual since before they married."

Julie gives me a shrewd look, almost as if she knows I'm not saying everything I'm thinking. "As much as I'd love to call you on that, our time's up." She flips the folder in her lap closed and stands. "I've enjoyed speaking with you today. I look forward to finding out more tomorrow."

I stand and take her hand to shake it. "How long do I have to come every day?"

"A while." She turns to escort me to the door.

"Not an answer, Doc." The door she leads me out of is not the door I entered through.

"But it is the one you're getting right now. Have patience, Steve. These things take time."

I take a deep breath and release it slowly. "I know. It's just…" I chew my lip, trying to find the words. "I had a flashback in front of Grace yesterday. I know it scared her. I don't want to do that ever again."

Julie nods and places one hand on my arm. "I totally understand. But one doesn't recover from PTSD. And it takes time to learn how to control the triggers and reactions. Please have faith and patience, okay?"

Nodding my head I step out into the hall. "Yeah, okay. Oh, quick question. Danny moved into my house when they thought I was dead and Grace is with him right now. Should I stay somewhere else?"

"Are either of them a trigger for you?"

"No. They seem to keep me grounded. I just don't want Grace seeing me having a flashback."

"I see no reason for you to move out. Have you told them about the PTSD?" I nod. "Then just remind them, Grace in particular, to move slowly around you and to not sneak up on you."

"Okay." I turn to walk away.

"Oh, and Steve?" I pause and turn back. "No sex for right now."

I swallow a groan. Leave it to me to find a shrink who doesn't think sex is helpful. "Really?"

"Yes. You're emotionally fragile right now and sex is so emotionally complex that I feel it'll hinder more than help. If you keep talking to me like you did today, you should be able to resume normal activities soon."

Sighing deeply, I let me shoulders slump. "Okay. No sex. It's been so long I've probably forgotten how anyways."

She chuckles. "See you tomorrow. Aloha."

"Yeah, Aloha," I mutter, giving a sarcastic wave over my shoulder as I walk away down the hall toward the elevator.

A text from Danny, left during my session, lets me know that Grace is in the mood for Kamekona's shrimp so I point the truck in that direction. There are so many emotions swirling just beneath the surface that I'm glad she wants to eat outside. I'm starting to find the cab of my truck a tad claustrophobic and I know I'd find a restaurant full of people doubly so.

Pulling into a spot at the beach, I don't step down from the cab so much as fall out. My vision's starting to blur a bit at the edges and I'm afraid I'm having a flashback. Or about to have one. Except it doesn't feel like the ones I've had before.

Danny takes one look at my face when I join him and Grace in line at Kamekona's truck and sends Grace off to finds us a table. "You okay, Babe?"

I shake my head. "Not really."

"You need to go home?"

I shake my head hard, doing my best to keep the flashback, or whatever it is, at bay. "Need the open space."

Danny opens his mouth to respond but we're next in line and Kamekona asks, "What can I get for you fine gentlemens today?"

"We'll take one Gracie Special and two Ninja SEAL Specials," Danny answers, pulling out his wallet.

"I'll bring that out to yous when it's done." With a nod, we turn to join Grace at the table she's picked but Kamekona calls me back. "McGarrett. Glad you're not dead."

"Thanks, Kamekona."

When we get to the table, Danny goes to sit next to Grace but she pushes him away. "No, Danno! I want Papa to sit here." Danny looks at me with an expression that tells me he wants to refuse and tell her why but I shake my head and sit on the bench next to her.

And instantly regret it.

She wraps one hand around my forearm near my elbow and leans her head against my shoulder. My internal alarms are already screaming at me to run, fight, kill and the instant she touches me they intensify. Luckily the side of me that is all about her protection is louder, stronger, more dominant. It tells me to just get away before I hurt her; that harming her is not an option. But another side of me is insisting that I need to be near her; not just to make sure she comes to no harm, but to also keep me in the here and now. Her touch, her smell, even the sound of her voice calls to me and has me fighting to come back from wherever it is I've gone.

My entire body stiffens and I close my eyes, clenching and unclenching my fists.

Danny, bless him, senses my distress. "Grace, Monkey, remember what Papa told you yesterday?" I feel her nod against my arm. "Well, this is one of those times he needs you to slowly move away, okay?"

She begins to uncurl her fingers in preparation of moving away but before I can even think of it, my right hand clamps down over hers where it's resting on my forearm. "Need…her…" I manage to grit out through clenched teeth.

"Steve?" Danny sounds concerned. Is that concern for me or Grace?

"Grounded."

"She's keeping you grounded?"

I manage to nod. "Please…" God! I hate how weak and pathetic I sound.

"It's okay, Babe, we got you." Danny's solid presence at my right side calms me some but not enough.

My heart feels like it's about to beat right out of my chest and I can't seem to catch my breath. Grace presses closer against my arm and I hear her sniff. Great, now I'm scaring her again and that is what I didn't want to do.

"We'll take those orders to go!" Danny calls to Kamekona before wrapping one hand around my right bicep. "We're here, Steve. Just try and breathe, okay?"

I take another hitching breath and feel two tears slide down my cheeks. A loop of a bomb exploding, sending bodies flying in all directions is playing behind my closed lids. The faces are a mixture of my men, Danny, Grace, Chin and Kono. They all die because of me.

"Hey, Brah. He okay?" Kamekona's deep voice startles me.

"He'll be fine." Danny lets go of my arm and in my mind's eye I see him standing and taking the bag with our food from Kamekona.

"You take care of him, okay?"

"We will." Danny's hand lands gently on my shoulder but I still flinch at the unexpected touch. "Sorry, Babe. Think you can walk to the car?" I nod. "Good. Up ya go." He helps me stand.

I manage to pry my eyes open and look down into Grace's upturned face. While there is fear in her eyes, there's also love and concern. I try to give her a reassuring smile but don't think I'm even the least bit successful.

Danny begins leading me toward where he parked and I can hear him on his phone asking Chin and Kono to come get my truck. A flicker of worry about how they're going to drive it home when I have the keys flares briefly before images of all the innocent deaths I'm responsible for kills it.

I have no memory of Danny getting us all in the car or of us leaving the beach. I rise above the flashback, or whatever it is, long enough to realize we're headed home. Danny's touch and his whispered "You are not to blame" keep me there until the house is in view.

Danny pulls into the drive and turns the car off. "Grace, Monkey, go inside and up to your room, please." He gets out and lets her out of the backseat before coming around to open my door.

"Can you walk?" My vision clears enough for me to see Danny crouched in the open door. I give a jerky nod, not entirely sure it's the truth. "Good. I doubt I can carry your gigantic self inside."

"Not…inside…please…" My breathing speeds up at the thought of being surrounded by four walls and my heart kicks into a higher gear.

"Okay. The beach?" When I nod, Danny stands and wraps one hand around my upper arm to help me climb out of the car.

He guides me around the side of the house, never once letting go of my arm. When our feet sink into the sand of the beach, I kick off my shoes and somehow manage to pull off my socks before stumbling from his grasp and down to the water's edge.

With a wounded sound, I fall to my knees, fisting the sand in my hands, doing my best to convince myself that this is not the sand of the Afghan desert.

After a minute, I feel Danny's arms wrap around me on my left. Then a second of two later Grace embraces me from the right. I try and force her to leave but she refuses to budge and the…whatever this is, is too powerful for me to ignore the pull of any longer.

I have no idea how long the three of us have been kneeling on the beach when a particularly violent shiver from Grace breaks through the fog clouding my brain. It is noticeably colder now than when I first collapsed to my knees and the sun is sitting low in the sky making it clear that hours have passed.

Turning a bit to my right, I pull Grace into my arms, doing my best to share my body heat with her. "All better, Papa?" Her teeth are chattering, she's so cold.

"Getting there." I bury my nose in her hair.

"Think we can go somewhere a tad more comfortable?" Danny asks and guilt flares at the thought that he's been kneeling here for hours on his bum knee.

"Yeah, sure." I stand easily with Grace still in my arms. "Need help, Danno?"

"Just let me pull myself up on your arm." I hold one hand out and brace myself to counter his shifting to his feet. Once fully upright, he proceeds to dust the sand from all our clothes. "Grace, go pick out something for dinner, 'kay?" He takes her from me and shoos her toward the house.

"You should have made her eat something."

"I did. She ate her lunch, And yours." My lips twist into what I can only hope is a smile.

Danny runs the fingers of one hand along my hairline at my temple. "You know you can always talk to me, right?"

"That's what my shrink's for." As the world comes back into focus, I find myself reacting to his nearness and decide to not fight it. Surely Julie's just being overly cautious by telling me to not engage in sexual activities at this time. I want him, have wanted him for over two years, and I'll be damned if I'm going to wait any longer. I start nuzzling under his chin and nipping a bit at that spot at the corner of his jaw that makes him release a breathy little moan.

"Steve…" He pushes me away half-heartedly. "I mean, if you ever need to talk and can't get to her."

I just shake my head. "Thanks for the offer, D but I'm gonna have to respectfully decline. Too close, emotionally."

"Okay." He swats at my hands where they're playing with the buttons on his jeans. "Steve."

"Danny."

He rolls his eyes. "What'd she say about sex?"

"Didn't ask her." At least that's the truth.

"You need to." Giving up on slapping my hands away, he steps out of my reach. "We are not doing this until she says we can."

Anger flares white hot deep in my belly and I lash out. "You just don't want me and are using this as your excuse."

He gapes at me. "Have you lost your mind? Me, not want you?" He shakes his head. "You have no idea how much I want you, Steve." He steps closer and takes my face in his hands. "I regret so very fucking much not giving in eleven months ago. But the past is the past. And if we're going to have an emotionally stable relationship you have to get better, first. Do as the doctor says and it'll happen. Okay?"

"No! Not okay." I pull roughly from his grip and have to clench my hands into fists to resist the urge to punch him in the face. "You don't get it, Danny. I need you!"

His face softens. "I do get it, Steve. And I need you, too. But the fact remains that I think having actual intercourse will do more harm than good."

"How can making love cause me harm?"

"Because I do not have a healing cock, Steve, much as I wish that were the case." He tilts his head and makes imploring motions with his hands. "Please trust me when I tell you that I'd love nothing more than to take you upstairs and introduce you to the joys of gay sex. But it's not gonna happen. Not now at any rate. Okay?"

Shaking my head, convinced he's just throwing words at me to keep me distracted for whatever reason, I march into the house, through the kitchen, totally ignoring Grace and up to my room where I angrily pace back and forth the length of the room.

"Steve." Danny enters the room and closes the door behind him. "What's wrong?"

"You!" I fling one arm out in his direction. "And your refusal to fuck me!" My chest heaves as I try and get air into my lungs. Suddenly I feel as if there's not enough oxygen in the room. And of course it's all Danny's fault. "Either fuck me or get out!" I scream, spittle flying from my lips.

Danny appears shocked by my outburst but he recovers quickly. "Oh, hell to the fuck no!" He stomps to where I'm standing near the bathroom and gets right in my face, his finger almost touching my nose. "Whatever you're going through is my problem, too. We're in this together but I'll be damned if I'll let you give me an ultimatum. You're not well, Steve. Let me help."

"You want to know how you can help?" My hand whips out and clamps on his upper arm. "You can start by not being a fucking tease and fuck me!" His eyes go wide and I can see fear creeping in but I don't let that stop me. I'm on a roll here. "You say you want me and yet we've never gone past mutual blowjobs. So stop dicking around with me and fuck me!"

"My God, Steven. You have a one track mind there." When he goes to step back, I tighten my hold on his arm. "Steve, you're hurting me." He tries to pry my fingers off but that just makes me clench them even tighter. "You're fucking hurting me, Steve!"

Something in his tone or face finally breaks through my rage and I look down at where I'm grasping his arm, startled at the white knuckled grip. I instantly let go and stumble back until I hit the wall and then I slowly slide down until I'm sitting with my knees pulled up to my chest.

Danny rubs his arm, rotating his shoulder while trying, and failing, to hide a wince. I can see the instant he realizes that something is seriously wrong with me.

"Steve!" Danny falls to his knees in front of me, his hands hovering over my knees like he's afraid of what I'll do if he touches me.

Tears stream down my face; I can't catch my breath, my heart is beating like I've just run a marathon, the only thing I can see is my fist clenched white knuckle tight around his arm, my fingers leaving bruises. "You have to leave, Danny." I manage to get the words past the lump in my throat. "Take Grace and go!"

"If you think I'm leaving you alone like this, you're certifiable."

I give a huff of humorless laughter. "So you've said before."

He rolls his eyes. "Must not be that bad if you can make jokes." I raise my eyes to his and whatever he sees in them has him biting back a curse. "Do you need your therapist?"

"Don't know."

He nods. "I'm gonna say yes. You have her card?" I just blink at him and he sighs before digging through my pockets. "At least you're wearing jeans today." He comes up with a business card from my right front pocket. "Be right back," he says, standing up. He doesn't go far, though. Just paces the room while talking on his cell. "Is this Dr. Julie Anderson? My name's Danny Williams. I believe you have a Steve McGarrett as a patient? Yes, yes, I know you can't say because of confidentiality, however, I just took your card from his pocket. He's in a bad way. Not sure. Do you make house calls? Perfect. Yes, the address in his file. Thank you."

He takes a deep breath after disconnecting the call then pushes a speed dial number. "Kono? Danny. Ha, ha. Not the time for jokes. I need you to come get Grace for a while. Not sure. I'll explain when you get here. Just hurry, okay? I'll tell Grace you asked to keep her for a bit so Steve and I can have some time to reconnect. Absolutely not. No surfing allowed. Thanks."

Dropping the phone on the bed, he once again appears in front of me. "Babe? I need to get Grace ready for her extended stay at Casa Kalakaua. Will you be okay for a few minutes?" I give a jerky nod and he sighs. "Just a few minutes more and you'll have me all to yourself, okay?" I nod again and he stands up, one hand hovering over my knees again before it closes in a fist and with a sound of frustration he leaves me alone.

My brain's screaming at me to leave; to run; get away before I hurt Gracie like I hurt Danny but my body refuses to obey and so I sit there huddled in on myself, picturing what could have - would have - happened had he not been able to get through to me. I was going to either punch him in the face or rape him. Or both. And neither is good. Most especially with Grace in the house.

After a few minutes I hear Grace's high pitched voice raised in anger, followed by Danny's deeply accented one answering in kind. They must be arguing about her going to stay with Kono. It's almost enough to have me get up and tell him to not bother; that she obviously needs him more. But again, I find my body refusing to move.

Their voices get louder, telling me that the argument has carried them up the stairs on their way to Grace's room to pack for Kono's. "I thought you liked spending time with Kono." Danny sounds at his wit's end.

"Not when Papa's just got home. He was gone almost a year, Danno."

He sighs. "I know exactly how long he was gone, Monkey, which is why we want to spend some time alone to reconnect. Besides, you'll have much more fun with Kono."

"But Papa needs me!"
Grace has her father's stubborn streak.

"He has me!"

"I still don't want to go!"

"I'll let Kono take you surfing."


Grace laughs. "Bribes, Danno?" There's a pause, then Grace asks, "Does he want me to go away?" in a small voice. It breaks my heart that she thinks that.

"Oh, no, Monkey. It's nothing like that. Kono called and wants to spend some time with you. Thought you might be missing female attention and that Steve and I might want some alone adult time."

"Oh. What if I don't want to spend the night?"

"Then you don't have to. But I'd rather you make that decision later. Okay?"

"Fine."
Grace says the word the same way Mary does when talked into doing something she really doesn't want to.

"It'll be fine, you'll see."

"I'm holding you to the surfing thing."


Danny sighs. "Of course you are."

I hear Grace's door close and sit there on the floor trying to remember how to breathe. And trying to forget the look on Danny's face as I gripped his arm so tight I know I had to have left bruises. After a few minutes I hear Danny and Grace chattering, good natured arguing about surfing, as they make their way back downstairs just as someone, Kono most likely, knocks on the door.

Danny gives Kono some last minute instructions, a feeble attempt to take back the surfing bribe and general safety concerns. Kono's musical laughter floats up the stairs when Grace calls Danny on his backpedaling about letting Kono take her surfing. He really should just give it up. Grace is Hawaiian now. Surfing's not in her blood like it is a native's but she's adapted well.

Grace shouts "Bye!" and I hear the door close, then Danny jogging up the stairs. His presence in the room is reassuring and calming. I can feel my breathing slowing, my heartbeat returning to normal. "Steve?" I open my eyes to see him crouched once more in front of me. "The doc should be here soon. What do you need from me?"

"Just… you…" God, I hate how weak I sound; how helpless I feel.

"Can I touch you?" I nod and he instantly enfolds me in his arms. With a grunt, he settles on his butt with me all but curled in his lap. "I'll have to go let the doctor in when she gets here, ya know."

I nod and curl tighter, taking up as little space as possible. How can he comfort me after what I did? Why isn't he pissed?

By the time a knock sounds on the door, I'm feeling a bit more in control, although not enough to tell Danny to send the doctor away. "I have to let her in," he whispers against my hair. I shift enough for him to get up and immediately regret letting him go.

The feeling of being trapped increases, I can't catch my breath again, my heart begins pounding so hard it hurts but I still can't make my body obey my command to run away so I wedge myself into the corner near the bathroom and wrap my arms around my raised knees; hiding my face in them.

Danny enters the room, his presence once again something I can almost touch. "Steve?" he calls, not able to see me in my corner because of the dresser. "God, Babe!" he exclaims when he gets into the room enough to see around the huge piece of furniture.

"Detective, if you please?" I raise my head enough to see Julie shooing Danny away. My anger returns. If she's going to keep him from helping me, then I'll just have to find another doctor. She settles on her knees in front of me. "Steve? Can you focus on me?" I look over at her but my gaze darts right back to Danny. "Detective?" She extends one arm behind her toward Danny without looking at him.

"It's Danny." He steps up and sits down cross-legged next to her. "You okay, Babe?"

"I know you're trying to help, Danny, but for now, could you please not talk to him? I need to get him to follow me out of these attacks and if he gets used to you being around, I won't be able to do it when we're alone."

"Okay. Sorry."

She turns to smile at him. "No worries. Now, how long has he been like this?"

"Like this? Since just before I called you."

She frowns. "What brought it on?"

"You're asking me? You're the doctor." She tilts her head and Danny sighs. "I have no idea what you two talked about in his session but it must have triggered something because by the time he joined my daughter and I for lunch he was looking a bit wild eyed. He said he needed the openness of the beach, Grace loves Kamekona's shrimp. When he sat down next to her she did what she always does: she cuddled up next to him. He…freaked, for want of a better word. I managed to get us home and he insisted on going to the strip of beach behind the house. Grace and I held him until he seemed to come out of it.

"When I sent Grace inside he started coming on to me and when I refused he accused me of not wanting him. He blew up and came up here. I followed. We had words and he grabbed my arm."

"How tight did he grab you?"

Danny sighs and looks at me. I give a tiny nod and he lifts the left sleeve of his shirt, turning to show Julie and I the finger shaped bruises on his upper arm. "I know he didn't mean it."

"You are not helping, Detective." Julie's tone is that of a mother scolding her mischievous child. Danny glares at the back of her head. Somewhere deep inside, I find it hilarious. "Now, Steve,-" Julie seems intent on ignoring Danny's presence. "-why did you grab Danny's arm hard enough to leave bruises?"

I shake my head. "Don't know."

"Did you want to hurt him?"

I close my eyes trying to stop the tears from falling. "Yes." Pulling my knees tighter against my chest, I wait for the explosion. Surely Danny will want to repay like for like.

"Why? Did Danny hurt you?" To give Danny his due, he doesn't so much as sputter in outrage at the suggestion he might have hurt me first.

Panic flare that his silence means he's left so I open one eye to look. Relief floods me when I see him sitting there, biting his lip so hard I'm afraid he'll make it bleed. "Yes." His face falls and two tears run down his cheeks at my answer. I know I'm still hurting him but I have to be honest with Julie or I won't get better. And I have to get better. For Grace. And for Danny, too.

Julie shoots a look at Danny but he's not looking at her. He's looking at me. "How did he hurt you, Steve?"

"He rejected me."

"You or your advancements?"

"My advancements." Might as well have been me.

She nods. "I see. How did that make you feel?"

My first response was that he rejected me so how do you think that made me feel? "Pissed. Abandoned. Unwanted. Unlovable. Unloved." The rage is building again, but I refuse to let it off its leash. "I wanted to punch his face but knew that wouldn't be a good thing so I walked away. He followed. I lashed out."

"Thank you for being honest." Julie scoots around until she can look at us both without turning her head too much. "Danny? How did hearing that make you feel?"

"Sad. Like a jerk." He pauses and runs his fingers through his hair. "I'm not usually at a loss for words but I am right now." He gives a deep sigh. "I've never loved someone the way I love Steve. We both kept our distance because of him being in the military at first. Then I just didn't think he felt the same. I really wish I had slept with him back before he was deployed."

"The root of this has nothing to do with that." Julie looks at me. "May I tell him what we talked about this morning? I nod. "Steve has abandonment issues, which I'm sure you already knew." She pauses and looks thoughtful for a few seconds. What do you know about his injury?"

"Just that he was hit on the head hard enough to knock him unconscious. The next thing he remembers is waking up in the hospital in Germany."

"It's my belief that, even though they all died, he feels abandoned by his team. He was left for dead by the men who attacked them. Doesn't matter that it was the enemy. Just the fact that he was left behind."

"Are you saying I should have taken him to bed? In his current emotional state?"

"No, I'm not saying that at all. I told Steve that sex was off limits for now. Apparently he chose to ignore my advice." She throws a glare my way but I refuse to feel guilty.

"What happens now?" I can sense Danny's frustration at not being able to help me more than he is.

"Now, I sedate him. He needs sleep and in his current state he's going to fight it." She leans over and grabs her bag. "Is your daughter here right now?"

"No, I had a friend come get her for a few days."

Julie nods. "Steve? This is only to help you relax enough to sleep. I'd like to put you on a seventy-two hour eval to see if you need meds for anxiety. Okay?"

"Yeah, okay." I obediently hold out my arm so she can give me the shot and almost instantly I begin to feel the effects. My panic decreases significantly and my eyelids get heavy.

"Who's his emergency contact?"

"That would be me. I'm also his next of kin. Or rather I will be in a few days."

"Oh?" Julie stands and throws the strap of her bag over her shoulder.

"Yeah." Danny also stands. "I filed domestic partnership papers this morning. Should be legal by week's end."

"Ho'omaika'i 'ana." She puts one hand on Danny's arm."If you would pack him a bag and drive him to Tripler. I'm going to go ahead and make sure they have a bed.

Danny nods and they both exit the room, leaving me alone again to once more fight the rising tide of panic. I'm getting sick and tired of being afraid, of panicking for no discernible reason, of crying at the drop of a hat, of being fucking angry at Danny for trying to help me get better.

Turning my head to the side I lay my cheek on my folded arms and let my lids close. I know I doze off because I'm totally unaware of Danny returning until he touches my shoulder. Lifting my head didn't used to be so difficult. And then I remember. "She gave me something, Danny."

He smiles at me. "I know. Think you can stand up and get down the stairs to the car?" I nod, frowning in concentration when my body doesn't instantly obey my command. "C'mon." Danny plants his feet and tugs on my arm. Working together we manage to get me to my feet and into the car. Danny presses a kiss to my forehead after buckling my seatbelt.

I blindly reach out and wrap my fingers around his wrist when he goes to step back. "I'm sorry." My voice so small even to my own ears.

"For what, Babe?"

"For hurting you."

"I'm fine." I hear his feet shuffle on the gravel of the drive.

"I wanted to hurt you!" Sobs that I can't control wrack me frame as I think about what I almost did.

"Oh, Babe." His warm breath washes over my face. "It's just a few bruises."

"But I wanted to do so much more." Tears are running unchecked down my face and I hate that he's seeing how weak I truly am.

"Oh, Steve." He gently takes my face in his hands and wipes my tears with his thumbs. "You're sick. But you're going to get better."

"But-"

"No, buts, Steve. I love you. I know you love me. We'll discuss this in counseling, okay?"

I nod, the fight draining from me. "Okay."

I lean my head against the door after he closes it and give up, allowing the sedative to do its job and pull me down into the dark depths of sleep.

Part four

(no subject)

Date: 2012-12-08 06:11 pm (UTC)
rungirl60: (Default)
From: [personal profile] rungirl60
Oh, this was so sad! Danny is trying so hard and is being so patient. And poor Steve unable to control his emotions. I hope the doctor will be able to help him!

(no subject)

Date: 2012-12-08 06:17 pm (UTC)
simplyn2deep: (Default)
From: [personal profile] simplyn2deep
god this was a heartbreaking chapter. Steve is in need of so much help, thankfully Danny will be there to help, as well as the doctor.

looking forward to more.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-12-09 01:52 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Wow, loving this story. I just want Steve to get better!

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