Author: fatorangekat (DC)
Rating: PG13 (some language)
Genre: Pre-Slash M/M
Spoilers: Obviously for ep 3.01 and 3.02 as well as mentions of events in season 2.
Disclaimer: The Hawaii Five-0 characters and situations do not belong to me. I simply love to play on their beach.
Special thanks always to my lovely beta- HCat.
Note: Ideally, I will be doing one of these per episode. I've got the first four done right now.
Word count for 1_million_words- 1082 (total to date: 2279)
Summary: What if, after asking Catherine to help him find his mother, Catherine decides to ask Steve for a favor in return?
A03 Link here
What If- La O Na Makuahine (3.01) LJ Link A03 Link
[What If- Kanalua (Ep 3.02) ]
They were all in the parking lot, having returned from the paddle out for Malia's funeral. Chin stood alone on the sea wall, staring out over the ocean while his friends dried off and started to get dressed.
A warm breeze played over the beach, rustling through the palms and around them, tugging at loose shirts and wet hair. Steve watched Danny from the corner of his eye as he toweled off. Things hadn't been the same since the argument last week in the car. Danny refused to bring up anything about Grace or the custody in Steve's presence.
If Steve brought up the subject, Danny brushed him off. The topic, for now, was off limits between them.
Steve supposed he deserved that.
It wasn't like Danny to hold a grudge, at least not where his friends and Steve were concerned. But Steve had hurt him, deeply and he knew it. In return, Danny dug in and now kept him out of things concerning his daughter.
Steve had no idea how to apologize and try to make things right.
None of this had been lost on Kono or Catherine either. Chin was understandably preoccupied with his wife's recent death, but the two women had no problem picking up the undercurrent between Steve and Danny. Especially when Danny pointedly changed the subject in front of them a few days ago. Catherine started to say something but stopped when Kono nudged her and gave her a quick headshake.
Talk about your awkward moments.
Kono got dressed next to Danny, pulling slacks and a loose tank top over her bikini. They were both behind the Camaro, the trunk open so Danny could get at the towel and clothes he'd put there. Their surf boards rested against the side of Kono's car.
Steve watched as Danny pulled slacks on over his board shorts, towel draped around his bare shoulders, his hair tousled and still wet. Steve figured he could count on one hand the number of times he'd seen Danny without a shirt— which was a damn shame considering what his friend looked like without one.
As if sensing something, Danny glanced his way and Steve shifted his attention back to Chin, but not before realizing Catherine had been watching him. She dried her hair with a towel as she looked to Chin.
"How do you recover from something like that?"
Steve glanced at her, not entirely sure she was referring to Chin. "You don't." He tossed his towel in the cab of his truck and grabbed his shirt. His gaze drifted to Danny again, his friend talking to Kono as he slipped a striped dress shirt over those broad shoulders before running one hand through his tangled hair. Kono's voice carried on the breeze, but the words were indistinct as she spoke to Danny who shook his head in reply.
Steve sighed as he forced his attention back to Catherine as she stepped into her pants. "Cath, I need a favor."
"Of course." She gave him a gentle smile.
"I need you to help me find my mother." He shrugged into his shirt.
Catherine paused with a puzzled look as she met Steve's gaze. It wasn't often he could catch her off guard.
Danny buttoned his shirt before tucking it into slacks that hung on narrow hips as Kono ran a comb through her damp hair. Steve dragged his wandering attention back to Catherine who gave him a raised eyebrow.
"But I thought you told Witness Protection you wanted her location kept a secret, even from you."
"Yeah, I did, but that was before I found out she had a chance to kill Wo Fat and she didn't do it."
"What? I don't understand, why would she do that?"
"I don't know. But the Crime Lab said she intentionally fired her weapon into the floor when Wo Fat confronted her."
Catherine glanced past Steve to Danny and Kono for a moment. "She didn't want him hurt."
"She let him escape. I want to know why." Steve grabbed up his towel and started to dry his hair. But he caught himself watching Danny again, or rather that spectacular ass as the other man dug around in the trunk of the Camaro.
Kono caught Steve, giving him a frown.
Catherine touched his arm and Steve met her gaze, concern showing bright in her eyes. "You think you're gonna like the answer?"
Again, Steve wasn't sure she was referring strictly to Doris. "I can handle the truth."
"This is your mother we're talking about, Steve."
"Catherine, it's not going to prevent me from doing my job, okay?" Steve instantly regretted the exasperation he let creep into his voice. She raised her head and he sighed. "Will you help me out?"
"You'll owe me." Her soft smile let him know he was forgiven for the sharpness.
"What's new? Add it to my tab."
The trunk slamming shut on the Camaro caused both Catherine and Steve to glance over. Kono was putting one of the surf boards on the roof rack of her car, Danny going over to help her.
Catherine bumped shoulders with Steve. "I'll help you with your mother, but you need to make me a promise."
"That being?" Steve sensed he wasn't going to like this.
"You need to stop this and come clean with him." She nodded to Danny. "At the very least, apologize to him.
"I've known for a long time, Steve. Pretty much everyone has." She reached up, pressing one finger against his lips when he started to object. "I've known and I didn't mind. We never made any promises to each other."
"I never wanted to hurt you." Steve shook his head, shame washing over him. Christ, first Danny and now Catherine.
"You haven't." She nodded toward Danny. "But Danny? You do realize you're hurting him."
"He's upset about the custody."
"Of course he is! But he's hurt because you turned him away." Catherine rested her hands on Steve's chest, shaking her hair back behind her shoulders. "Steve, he went to North Korea for you. Now he's decided to make his stand here, in Hawaii, for his daughter's custody. Why can't you see what's in front of you?"
"It's not that simple!"
"Only because you won't let it!" She hesitated, meeting his gaze. "He's never going to make the first move, Steve. The truth is, he's shown his hand to you more than once. You just refuse to see it."