Confusion and Disillusion
The minute he heard Steve say his name he wanted to cry, he wanted to give Steve the biggest hug he had ever given anyone, he wanted to tell him how much he loved him, but he knew all that could wait, right now he needed to make sure Steve was okay.
"Hey babe..." Danny smiled as Steve tried to focus his eyes.
The first thing that registered in Steve's mind was how bright the room was, the second thing that registered was that he had no idea where said room was.
"D-anny..." His partner's named seemed to be the only thing he could say at the moment.
"I'll be right back babe, I'm going to go grab your doctor," with that Danny ran out of the room.
Steve started to look around the room and realized that he was in a hospital but he had no idea how he had gotten there. A few seconds later Steve saw a doctor entering his room with a smile on his face.
"Commander McGarrett, it's really good to see you awake, how do you feel?"
Steve took a second to register the question.
Danny sped around the doctor and grabbed the glass of water that was on Steve's tray table and held the straw to Steve's mouth. Steve took a big sip.
"Head hurts, body feels like it was h-it by a tru-ck, and my back feels like it's all cut up," Steve croaked starring at the doctor.
Danny took a deep breath. Because it is. Danny shuddered slightly as he thought back to the moment when they found Steve and how Steve's torn up back was the first thing they saw.
"Well that's perfectly normal considering the ordeal you went through," he smiled as he looked at Steve and then at Danny, and then back to Steve.
"Do you remember what happened, how you ended up in the hospital?" The doctor watched Steve closely.
Steve stared into the distance as he tried to remember what had happened.
"Uh, I remember your brother calling me Danny and me coming to pick you up and us driving to the warehouse...but that's it...were we in an accident?"
Danny looked at the floor.
"No babe, we weren't in an accident..." He was really hoping that he wouldn't have to tell Steve what happened.
"Oh..." Steve looked away angry at himself for not being able to remember. He looked back at the doctor. "That's all I remember, everything after that is a blank."
Danny looked at the doctor worriedly and the doctor just smiled at Steve.
"It's completely normal that you would have a bit of memory loss after everything that you went through..."
There it was again, what the hell had happened to him?
The doctor walked up to Steve, checked his eyes and checked his heart beat with the stethoscope.
"We'll run some tests, but I'm almost certain that your memory will come back soon enough when you're ready."
When you're ready...what was so bad that he couldn't remember now, why did he have to be ready?
"You should rest Commander, I'll be back to check on you in a little bit," he smiled as he gave Steve's shoulder an ever so gentle squeeze.
Danny watched as the doctor turned and left the room.
"I'll be right back okay," Danny smiled at Steve and ran after the doctor.
"Doctor Connor," the doctor turned around as he heard Danny behind him. "Why can't he remember anything?"
Doctor Connor looked at Danny with empathetic eyes.
"It could be a multitude of things Danny, it really is common for patients who had suffered major physical and mental trauma such as Commander McGarrett to not remember everything right away, either because of the physical trauma or because they are mentally suppressing it as a form of PTSD. I can know for sure, after we run some tests, which of the two it most likely it."
Danny just nodded and looked into Steve's room. The doctor smiled and placed a hand on Danny's shoulder.
"I wouldn't worry too much about it Danny, Commander McGarrett is through the worst of it, I'm certain within the next few hours to next few days he'll start to regain his memory,"
"That's what I'm worried about," Danny mumbled under his breath, quiet enough for the doctor to not hear.
Danny had hoped that when Steve had woken up that he would have remember everything, instead of having no recollection and then remembering it later on, which almost felt like re-living it over again.
Danny sighed, thanked the doctor and walked back into Steve's room.
As Danny got closer to Steve's bed he could see that Steve was asleep again, the machine's all working together in a rhythmic pattern, it was almost soothing.
Danny sat down in the chair next to Steve's bed and contemplated what he was going to do, what he was going to say, if Steve woke up again and started asking questions about what had happened. He couldn't lie to Steve but he was worried that Steve wouldn't be able to handle the truth in his fragile state.
Danny looked at his best friend and shook his head, the doctor's words relaying in his mind, Commander McGarrett is through the worst of it, Danny sighed, he may be through the worst of it physically but he was about to be put through the ringer again emotionally; it just wasn't fair.
As Danny sat back in the chair he realized that he hadn't called Chin and Kono yet to let them know that Steve had woken up. He stepped outside and made the phone call.
Chin and Kono arrived 10 minutes after Danny had hung up the phone with them. Danny hadn't eaten in a few hours so Kono had brought some food for all of them. Once the pair arrived the three of them walked over to the cafeteria to eat. Danny hated leaving Steve's side but he knew Steve would probably be asleep for a bit and the three of them couldn't be in his room talking; the cafeteria was also not far from his room.
"How is he?" Kono looked at Danny with worry etched on her face.
"Uh, considering what he went through, he's okay I guess...he doesn't remember what happened though..." Danny looked up at the cousins.
"He doesn't remember anything?" Chin all of a sudden lost his appetite.
"He remembers Matt calling him, he remembers picking me up to go to the warehouse, and that's it, he asked if we had gotten in an accident," Danny shook his head as he looked at his food, he really wasn't hungry either.
"What did the doctor say about his memory loss?" Kono asked playing with her food.
"He said it was normal, that Steve was through the worst of it and that his memory would eventually come back sooner or later. They're running some tests later and he said he'll know for sure then if the memory loss is a physical thing or a mental thing, but he said he's betting on it being mental."
"That's good though right, it's better than his brain being physically damaged..." Chin was trying to find the bright side to this situation.
"I guess..." Danny looked at the ground. "Depends on how bad his mental and emotional damage is, who knows what Wo Fat said and did to him while he was high on those drugs, Steve was saying some messed up things when we found him."
You left, not real
You came back...
Not just partner?
The things Steve had said in that cellar had scared Danny more than he would have liked to admit. He needed Steve to get better, he needed Steve to remember so that he could talk to him, make sure that Steve knew how important he was, and that Danny would never leave him. After recalling everything that Steve had said to him in that cellar, his worst fear right now was that Steve would wake up, remember everything, and feel like Danny hadn't been there for him, feel like Danny had somehow abandoned him or not cared.
Chin and Kono could see that Danny was having a difficult time and they felt for him. Danny had been through the ringer the past few days, and as brutal as Steve's mental and physical pain was, Danny's was easily comparable, after all, when you hurt one you hurt the other.
Steve had woken up to an empty room, except for the pretty nurse who was standing to his right checking on his monitors. Steve looked around the room for Danny but couldn't seem him anywhere, he didn't know why but he had expected Danny to be there when he woke up again.
The nurse must have noticed Steve's wandering eye because she looked over and smiled at him.
"Your partner is just grabbing some food with your other officers, he left about 10 minutes ago, he'll be back soon, trust me, he's never gone for long," she smiled at Steve.
Steve wanted to smile back, he wanted to believe that what she was saying was true, but something was nagging away at him telling him that something was wrong, that things weren't as they seemed.
As Steve sat there starring at the wall he started to remember bits and pieces from the night he had received the call from Matt.
"Danny! Hey! We need to go in together, slowly, even if he thinks he's alone he may not be!"
"Matty, what the hell's going on man, are you okay?"
"Danny...what are you doing here,"
"He's not the one who's in trouble,"
"Commander, it's so good to see you again"
"There really is no need to protect your brother Detective, he's not the one we're after, in fact, he's the one who helped us lure Commander McGarrett here,"
"How could you, why would you do this Matt?"
"I'll give you 5 million reasons why,"
The flood gates had opened and the memories started to bombard Steve's mind, every single last one of them.
"Danny...I need this money, I owe this money to someone who's going to kill me if I don't pay up, I didn't have a cho..." Danny stopped Matt before he could finish that sentence.
"DON'T...Don't tell me that you didn't have a choice, don't tell me that your only choice was to hand my partner over to a ruthless killer.
"Danny, please man, just go"
"I said no Steven!"
"It's up to you Detective, leave now and your brother gets to come with you, unharmed...stay and he dies."
"I'll see you soon Danno,"
All of a sudden the memories stopped. Matt had set him up, walked him into a trap, just like Jenna had done. Steve knew there was more; he knew he was still missing a huge chunk of what had happened to him, namely, the part where he was Wo Fat's prisoner...again.
Steve closed his eyes as the next set of memories started to wash over him.
"I don't know."
Steve remembered being electrocuted with the cattle prod, being beaten senseless with a bat and brass knuckles, and being used as a human punching bag.
"Commander...are you ready to talk yet?" Wo Fat came and stood in front of Steve.
"No matter how many times you ask me it's not going to change my answer, I don't know where Doris is, and even if I did, I wouldn't tell you,"
"I know what she did, I know what happened to your mother."
Steve remembered seeing the pain in Wo Fat's eyes and then he remembered Wo Fat walking in with a whip. That explains my back...
The next set of memories started to surface, and Steve had no idea what he was in for.
"I just injected you with a veryvery high dose of Mescaline, not enough to kill you but enough to make you go a little crazy...enjoy Commander,"
Steve cringed inwardly knowing full well how brutal that drug could be. He closed his eyes and tried to will the next set of memories to surface, not knowing that it was about to shake him to his core and shake the very foundation he relied on for his recovery.
He remembered seeing Danny there, he remembered Danny coming in after the drug had been administered, he remembered thinking that Danny had found him and that he was safe.
"D-anny...you found me,"
"How? How d-id you k-now to look here?"
"Wo Fat told me..."
Steve's eyes shot open but he couldn't stop the memories from invading his mind.
"You don't think Matt set you up on his own do you?"
"Y-you set me up..."
"Matt could never pull something like this off on his own, he needed my help"
"I needed to help him Steve, he's my baby brother, I couldn't let those goons kill him, he needed the money that Wo Fat was going to give him for turning you over."
No...this was not happening. He remembered exactly how he had felt in that moment, how crushed and devastated he had felt, the worst part wasn't that he was set up by Matt, or even that he was tortured by Wo Fat again, the worst part in this entire horror story was what he was reliving right now...his partner, his brother, betraying him.
"I didn't want to do it Steve, I didn't want to turn you over, but I didn't have a choice, it was either you or Matt."
"You understand right Steve, you know how important family is...not that you really have one seeing as your dad's dead, your mom is god knows where, and your sister lives in another state."
"Steve I'm really sorry, but I had to, just like Jenna had to, even though her fiancé ended up being dead. But regardless, it was for the same reason, to save someone we love. At the end of the day, Matt is my family, you're just my partner."
"Yea Steve, you're just my partner, I can get a new partner but I can't get a new brother, I really am sorry."
"Dan-danny, please...don't leave me here"
Steve couldn't believe what he had just seen but he also knew that everything he was seeing had happened, he had seen it with his own eyes. Although every fiber in his being was telling him that there was more to this, that the drugs had caused him to hallucinate, the images of Danny standing in front of him in that cellar were as clear as day, as was the pain he was feeling.
Steve's heart started to race and he was suddenly having a hard time breathing. He could hear his monitors going off as he didn't even try to fight the darkness that was starting to consume him.
Danny, Chin, and Kono could hear the commotion from the cafeteria and immediately ran over towards Steve's room.
Danny's heart dropped to his stomach as he realized the machine sounds were coming from Steve's room as doctors and nurses were rushing in.
The trio ran and stood in front of Steve's door, praying that Steve was going to be okay. Danny took a deep breath, he didn't think he could handle Steve flat-lining again, he just couldn't.
A few gut wrenching minutes later the machines had a steady rhythm again and Dr. Connor walked out and looked at the trio, knowing that they were going to want to know what had happened.
"Commander McGarrett's heart rate suddenly spiked, which is why you heard the monitors go off. We gave him something to get his heart rate down, he's unconscious but he should wake up soon."
"What happened?" Chin seemed to be the only one who could find his voice.
"We're not sure to be honest, the nurse had said that he had been awake for the last little bit...it's highly possibly that he remembered some of the things he went through the last few days, which triggered an anxiety attack."
Danny looked at the ground, cursing himself for not being there when Steve woke up. He then started wondering how much Steve had remembered, if what the doctor was saying was true. Danny started to breathe heavy as he took a seat in one of the chairs outside Steve's room.
"Hey brah, it's going to be okay," Chin sat down beside Danny placing a comforting hand on his shoulder.
Danny shook his head.
"What if he remembered Chin? What if he remembered everything that had happened, everything that that sick bastard had done to him, said to him...and I wasn't there...I wasn't there to tell him that none of it was true..." Danny knew he was talking a mile a minute but he couldn't help it.
"None of what was true Danny?"
"The things that Steve had said to me when we found him, how I had left before but I came back and how he asked me if we weren't just partners, Wo Fat messed with his head while he was on the mescaline, he lied, made Steve think that I didn't care...and I wasn't there to tell Steve that none of it was true," Danny was starting to have his own anxiety attack.
"Danny, I'm sure he knows that anything Wo Fat said wasn't true," Kono was trying to calm Danny down.
"That's the thing though! I don't think he thought it was Wo Fat saying those things to him, I think he thought it was me!"
Steve wasn't sure how long he had been asleep for, he remembered what had happened, he remembered having all the memories of the last few days flood back, right down to "Danny" being down there in that cellar with him and not helping him.
Steve opened his eyes and swallowed the lump in his throat as he saw Danny in the chair right beside his bed, sitting upright as he saw Steve's eyes meet his.
"Hey..." Danny's voice was so soft, barely above a whisper.
"Hey..." Steve looked at Danny and his heart broke. The images of Danny in that cellar saying all those horrible things to him were playing in his mind like a broken record.
"How are you feeling," Steve could tell that Danny was shaken up too.
"Uh, I'm okay,"
"Good...that's good..." Danny had his hands intertwined and placed on his knees, slightly hunched over.
Steve knew where this was going and he didn't want to do this right now, after everything that he had seen, looking at Danny right now didn't feel good, it hurt.
"I'm pretty tired Danny, I think you should – "
"I know Steve, I know you're tired and I promise I'll leave, I just need to ask you something," Danny's heart was shattering.
"Did you remember what happened? Is that why..."
Danny didn't need to finish his question. Is that why your heart rate spiked, is that why you had an anxiety attack and lost consciousness.
"Yeah..." Steve was finding it hard to speak.
Danny nodded his head and looked at the ground.
"Do you remember the rescue? Do you remember us finding you; do you remember us talking before you were taken to the hospital?" Danny was looking up at Steve like a lost child.
As Steve looked at Danny, new flashes of memories started to invade his mind.
"No babe, you're not dreaming, I'm right here Steve," Danny was trying to get into Steve's line of vision.
"No...l-eft...yo-u l-eft...n-ot r-eal"
"Steve I'm right here, babe I'm right here, I'm real I promise you I'm real,"
"D-d-anny...y-ou...y-ou came back..."
"I got you Steve, just breathe, we've got you babe, we've got you, you're safe."
"Of course I'm here babe, where else would I be, you're my best friend!"
"N-not ju-st par-partners?"
"When have we ever been just partners? You're my other half Steven, so I need you to stay with me okay, I need you to stay awake and keep talking to me till the paramedics get here."
When Steve snapped out of it he looked over at Danny who was watching him intently. He didn't know what to believe. There were two different Danny's, the one who betrayed him and the one who saved him, he knew which one he wanted to believe, but he couldn't tell which one was real and which one was not. He knew he had been injected with mescaline and he knew what that did, the hallucinations it caused. Although Steve was certain that the Danny that betrayed him was a hallucination, it was all too much to take in at the moment.
Steve could see the anguish in Danny's eyes. Danny's need for Steve to acknowledge that everything was okay between them, that they were still partners, still best friends, was written all over his face. But as much as Steve wanted to, he just couldn't talk to Danny right now, everything in his head was a mess, he was confused, disoriented...heart-broken...he just wanted to be alone.
"I'm really tired Danny, you should probably go home, I'll see you in the morning or something" Steve looked away not being able to handle the pain he knew he was causing Danny with those words.
Danny felt like he had been punched in the gut.
You should probably go home.
He had almost forgotten what home even looked like because he had been living at the hospital for the last few days. He hadn't left Steve's side, except to eat and go to the bathroom, but aside from that he had been glued to his partner. He had sworn that if the doctors or nurses made a fuss about him staying he would raise hell until they let him stay. But they hadn't questioned it; they even insisted that he stay.
It broke his heart that when he was finally asked to leave it wasn't by a nurse or a doctor, it was by the one person he never thought he would hear it from, the same person who was inadvertently responsible for his emotional breakdowns and panic attacks for the last few days. It physically hurt him to even think about leaving Steve's side. All he had wanted for the last few days was for Steve to wake up, to hear his voice, to tell him how much he meant to him and how much he had scared him. And now Steve was asking him to leave, asking him to walk away because although he didn't actually come out and say it, Danny knew that Steve couldn't stand looking at him, couldn't stand being in the same room as him; it was written all over Steve's face and it made Danny sick to his stomach
Given any other circumstance Danny would've fought like hell to fix things between him and Steve right then and there, he would've stayed in that room and talked Steve's ear off until he made him see that all the horrible things he thought Danny had said or done didn't actually happen, that they were just devastating side effects from the drug.
But he knew that pushing Steve to talk, or listen, right now, when he clearly didn't want to, wasn't going to help matters.
Steve's heart rate had already spiked a little awhile ago and the last thing Danny wanted was to cause any more stress or any more pain for Steve. So he took a deep breath, tried to control his shaking hands, and got off the chair.
Steve didn't miss the quiver in Danny's voice or his shaky hands, and for a brief second a part of him wanted to tell Danny to stay, wanted to ease some of his partner's pain and tell him that everything was going to be okay...but he didn't...he couldn't, because Steve himself didn't know if things would ever be okay again. So he just kept his mouth shut and allowed Danny to walk away.
Each step towards the door was physically painful. He had thought that when they had found Steve that everything would be okay, that there would be emotional and physical scars but that Steve would've leaned on him to help him get through it; that their friendship would be the glue that would put Steve back together piece by piece, put Danny back together piece by piece.
He had thought that when they found Steve they would be happy, that they would be whole again; never in a million years did he think that finding Steve would lead to both their hearts being shattered into a million pieces.
He walked to the door and looked back at Steve who had angled his body so that he was no longer facing Danny.
Danny's eyes filled with tears as he shook his head, turned around, and continued the excruciating walk away from the one person he needed more than anything right now.