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Fic: kumu (part 2)

(part 1)

It was bound to happen.

Steve had been waiting for this moment since he realized that Danny could fly when the rest of the human population just had wings for decoration. He had been preparing himself, his team and Danny for this moment. Steve had known the clock was winding down ever since Danno had been infected with sarin and lost control of his wings in front of several medical and HPD personal.

Wo Fat had kidnapped Grace.

Danny was a couple stories higher than Steve on the hotel balconies overlooking the bay. They were there because of Sang Min’s intelligence and now Danny had a perfect viewpoint. He could see his daughter crying. He could hear his daughter crying.

There were a hundred people, two news crews and a quarter mile of ocean between the father and the daughter and Steve was sure that Danny could hear his Monkey crying for him.

Steve couldn’t drive over the ocean and he didn’t have a helicopter near enough to land on Wo Fat’s boat before his was out of sight. The only way to the boat would be to fly. If Danny exposed himself, he would expose Grace. Wo Fat had to suspect, which was why he had kidnapped Danno’s only offspring. If Danno lost the gamble of flying to Wo Fat’s ship, he would lose in every way possible and Wo Fat would win. The two would be prisoners their entire lifetime and their bodies would be dissected after death.

Danny was bunching his muscles, because it was a risk worth taking. He was about to surrender to try and free his daughter. The odds were horrible, but that had never stopped Steve (or Danny) before.

“Danno!” he screamed.

Danny glanced down at him. Steve yelled again before he lost his attention. “Fly me over there!”

Danny blinked.

“I’ll do the fighting. You get Grace free.”

Danny didn’t agree out loud. His ‘sparrow’ wings appeared. He dove off his balcony and banked at the perfect moment. Steve was waiting for him with his arms stretched up high. Danny caught him up and they were flying. It was both more and less secure than hanging from a helicopter tether. Danny shook off one of his hands and grabbed Steve’s belt.

“Open your wings,” Danny told him breathlessly. “You’re a hell of a lot of dead weight and your wings should help.”

Steve shucked off his shirt and let it drop to the ground. (It landed in a palm tree). He opened his wings, felt one of Danny’s hands bury deep into the down and could feel the wind rise up beneath them. He was glad that he had added Danny’s exercise regimen to his own, keeping his legs parallel to his back worked some muscles that the otherwise wouldn’t have been ready for this exertion. He could hear the gasps of the crowd below. He wasn’t flying but it was still awesome. He was very shaky at gliding, but anything to make Danny’s flight easier. Danny flew out to Wo Fat’s ship. They could hear the arms dealer order his men not to kill them but to capture them. That gave Steve a distinct advantage.

He meant to kill them all.

“Three, two,” Danny gave him that little bit of warning before dropping him on the deck of Wo Fat’s ship. “One.” Steve rolled to avoid getting hurt in the fall. He swung his leg around and disabled the nearest attacker within moments. He broke that man’s neck, grabbed his gun and began to systematically kill everyone on the ship.

He didn’t have to worry about Danny and Grace, ‘cause Grace –definitely her father’s daughter- had seen her father coming for her and had jumped off the ship sailing through shark infested waters. Her arms had been tied behind her back but since no one (but possibly Danny) knew how to restrain or had a reason to restrain wings, her wings unfurled above the edge of her sundress and she flew straight into her Daddy’s arms. Danny gathered her up and she wrapped herself around him like the monkey he called her.

Steve was on his own.

Danny would fly Grace back to the big island and Chin would enact Operation Monkey Preserve. Even if Danny wanted to fly back to give Steve back-up, Chin and Kono wouldn’t let him. He needed to stick close to Grace. Chin and Kono would keep Danny and Grace safe. Steve just had to stay alive long enough to join them.

And he had to kill as many of these bastards that he could.

The next time Steve had a non-violent thought in his head, the deck of the ship was empty. He had either killed them all (he wasn’t sure on that count, but Wo Fat was definitely dead and he had the body to prove it this time) or they were hiding from him. A helicopter was hovering above and a rope was tossed down to him.

Steve took two steps back and aimed a gun (not his, the fifth one he had acquired and it had four shots remaining in the magazine). Cath waved out the window. Steve relaxed but not totally. He used military sign to ask see orders. Cath would understand what he wanted, because Chin would have sent the papers to her, probably even before Danny and Steve had made it to Wo Fat’s ship. Cath showed him a red folder and then passed the folder to a special ops guy to her left. He was vaguely familiar to Steve, but he wasn’t sure of the guy’s name.

The ops guy shoved the folder into his rigging and then repelled to the ship’s deck. Steve kept his gun trained on the guy, but the other man was careful not to make any threatening moves. He landed twenty feet away, pulled the red folder out of its safe place and jammed it under some rigging to keep it in place. With his hands up, the guy stepped way back, so that Steve could approach. Steve carefully did. He was almost sure of what he would find in the folder, but he had to see.

Cath had written on the inside cover of the folder ‘this is real, McGarrett.’ The papers themselves, Steve and Chin had typed up nearly six months ago when Danny had started working on their wings. It detailed the agreement 5-0 would have with the American government in exchange for safety of 5-0 and Danny’s family. Chin had attached the document to a text to Cath and Cath had sent it up the chain of command. Even knowing that this would happen, Steve still blinked when he saw the President of the United States’ signature on the bottom of the last page. These papers were a fax, or a copy of a fax, but someone had had to book to get these papers signed by now. He had honestly been expecting the Secretary of the Navy to authorize it and the President to approve it at a later date.

Steve looked up at the armed messenger. The messenger was keeping a sharp eye on the deck of the ship. His hand was on his own gun and it was pointed away. He was supposed to keep Steve safe without making him nervous. The messenger met his eyes. “Please get on the bird, sir. Let us secure the ship.”

Steve nodded, secured his gun and reached for the messenger’s rope. Unfortunately, this was his lot for the foreseeable future: he would be the protected instead of the protector. He could handle it for a year. Could Danno?

“One moment, please,” the messenger said. He had unhooked his rigging and offered it to Steve. “No unnecessary chances.”

Steve wanted to roll his eyes, but understood. 5-0 and Danny’s family were going to be handled with kid gloves for a while. Steve would get tired of this quick, so would the rest of his team. He expertly strapped on the rigging and attached himself to the rope. He was pulled up as a full ops team slid down.

As soon as Steve was secure in the helicopter, the ropes were retrieved and the pilot veered off. The ops team was left to deal with Steve’s mess.

Cath handed him a headset and, with an admiring grin, a shirt. Steve put them on and cocked an eyebrow.

Cath rolled her eyes. “When you said that your partner had talents, flying was not what immediately came to mind.”

Steve shrugged. “He’s also an awesome dad.”

“Yeah,” Cath smiled with remembrance. “Saw that too.”


“Safe with Williams and the rest of your team.”

“My team?” Steve asked.

“Settling in on the Enterprise.”

“All of them?”

“All of them plus Williams’ ex-wife.”

“Not Stan?” Steve was slightly confused.

Cath shook her head slowly. “No Stan civilian was brought on-board.”

The USS Enterprise came into view and it didn’t take Steve long to spot his team on the deck. They were grouped together far away from everyone else. Danny had an arm around Rachel and was holding Grace in his other arm. Danny’s wings were hidden; Grace was using her wings to hide her face. Chin and Kono flanked him. Steve had to look twice. Both had their substantial wings out. Chin’s Hawaiian Hawk wings were as obvious as his bare chest but Kono’s pure white wings were too close to the ethereal, unsubstantial, typical Asian wings to be seen easily. She had been wearing a bikini undercover when the whole thing had blown up in their faces. Danny had been so sure that her wings would darken into a known pattern but they hadn’t. With a little bit of research, the team guessed that her wings resembled the endangered ‘Akikiki bird of the Kaua’i wetlands. Chin’s wings didn’t surprise Steve, but Kono’s did. She couldn’t do it on her own, so someone was helping her. From everything Steve had observed about Danny and his ‘wings lessons,’ Danny’s wings had to be out for him to create long term substance on others.

Steve climbed out of the helicopter and jogged their way. Then Steve tilted his head. Were Grace’s fingers buried in Kono’s wings? Yet another trait that Danny had given his daughter. No one was going to reveal that.

Danny waited until Steve was two steps away. Steve could see the anger in his face and was glad that his hands were full. Danny slugging Steve on a flight deck would have been a horrible way to start their year.

“What the hell did you sign us up for, McGarrett?” Danny hissed loudly. Steve wasn’t too worried about people overhearing because the flight deck was even louder.

“One year of safety and hopefully enough money so that we can take care of ourselves when the year is up.”

“So we’re going to be lab rats?”

“They’re not allowed to touch you unless you sign off on it and they are not allowed to touch your family at all. You’re here as a teacher.”

Danny wrinkled his eyebrows. “Teaching what?”

“How to make wings substantial.”

“I can’t do that. I’m not a teacher.”

“You did it for us.”

“That involves a lot of touching and liking people,” Danny complained. “Not to mention the time involved. That’s not teaching.”

Interesting. “You get to vet everyone who gets on the list. They have to get on the list before they are allowed on board. And the Powers That Be realize that they must take into account time and a possibility of failure involved. It was detailed on the contract.”

“Yeah, about the contract, since it was written, oh, a year ago, how come neither of you two yahoos showed it to me?”

“Closer to four months,” Steve wanted to correct Danny’s exaggeration. “You didn’t think we needed it.”

“You could have showed it to me after the fact.”

Steve debated between diverting the imminent rant and letting Danny get it out of his system. He chose diversion. “Where’s Jenna?”

Chin shook his head. “She wasn’t answering her cell and no one is picking up at 5-O.”

“That’s not good,” Danny said. He liked the plucky CIA analyst.

“I’ve got HPD looking for her. As soon as they find her, they’re putting her on a helicopter for here,” Chin promised.

Steve nodded shortly. “We’ll have the flight deck contact us as soon as there is word.”

“That’s something.” Danny brushed Grace’s hair out of her face. “Can we get out of the wind?”

“Sure. This way.” Steve checked that no jets were landing and then jogged to the nearest side port. They would need to find a ranking officer to show them to their berths.

Danny elbowed. “Don’t you relax. I can just hear you thinking in sailor terms.”

Steve sniffed. He had no idea what Danny was talking about. His ‘ohana followed him across the deck and through the door. Steve slid to a stop when faced with a commander. Steve saluted to the higher rank out of habit. “Sir.” Out of the corner of his eye, he was relieved to see that there was just enough space behind him for Danny’s family. He didn’t see Chin but was sure he was watching their six.

“Lieutenant Commander McGarrett, I was just about to join you on the topdeck.”

“Sir, the wind was a bit much for Grace.”

The commander softened enough to make Steve suspect that he had daughters of his own. “Understood. I’m Commander Chris Robins, the XO of the Enterprise. I’ll be responsible for your welfare during your tour. Unfortunately, we don’t have a billet ready for all of you yet.” Commander Robins was a barrel-chested man, about Danny’s height. He had black hair and olive skin. He was as no nonsense as one’d expect the XO of an aircraft carrier to be.

“Understandable.” After all, the Enterprise was filled to capacity with a completely different mission four hours ago.

“We’re emptying out the officer quarters for you, and your family,” the commander met Danny’s eyes. “I’m afraid that the tight quarters will take some adjustment.”

“Just so long as we’re free to move about.”

Robins nodded. “You have no restricted sites aboard. Not even against carrying weapons; if you need more ammunition, please stop by the armory. But for safety’s sake, we ask that you have an escort in some areas and obey their directions. Please keep your phones on you at all times. Lt. Rollins will tag them. We’ll be tracking you, in case of any unauthorized visitors.”

Danny shrugged. It made sense. “Visitor rules. I will need a gun safe wherever I’m sleeping.”

Grace’s head popped off Danny’s shoulder and she looked around the grey metal walls. “Oh, we’re inside a… home… visiting?” Her wings disappeared and Danny shifted her around so that he could hold her more comfortably. “Sorry Mommy,” she whispered. It must have been one of Rachel’s rules.

Rachel smiled shakily at her daughter. She adjusted the sundress up a bit, now that the wings weren’t in the way anymore. “It’s alright, darling.”

“Miss Williams, it is more than okay,” Robins told her. “In fact, we hope to see a lot more wings around her soon.” He snagged a passing sailor and told him. “Inform the captain that we’ll need a gun safe in the cabins.” The man nodded and ran off.

“There are more people like us?” Grace asked her father hopefully.

“Not yet,” Steve answered her. “We hope your dad can change that.”

“Oh.” She carefully examined her father’s face, seeing the clues of his rioting emotions. She hugged him tight.

Robins continued. “How about a tour? Bring your entire team inside?”

Steve checked with Danny first. He looked like he needed a purpose, something he had to learn for his daughter’s sake. “Thank you, sir.” Kono opened the door behind them and brought Chin inside. His wings were put away and he was wearing a shirt again.

“Detective Daniel Williams, Lieutenant Commander Steven McGarrett, Officer Chin Ho Kelly, Officer Kono Kalakaua, Mrs. Edwards and Miss Williams, allow me to be the first to welcome you aboard the USS Enterprise,” Robins said. “I hope to make this ship as comfortable a stay as possible. If you’ll follow me.”

Robins worked his way through the ship, first pointing out the mess.

“Miss Williams, what’s your favorite meal. Hamburgers? French fries? Macaroni-n-cheese?”

“That’s not good for Danno’s cholesterol,” she told him seriously.

Robins nodded back just as seriously. “Of course. So should we plan salad and tofu?”

Grace shook her head. “We like salad. Can we have s‘ghetti?”

Robins glanced at a cook in the galley who nodded and started setting aside ingredients. “S‘ghetti, it is. A chef will be transferred in by tomorrow,” he told the adults. He smirked a bit. “As one of the sailors staying aboard, I’m looking forward to it. QOL is going up. Moving on.”

Next were sick bay and the engine room. He pointed out the heads –that means bathroom, Miss Williams. They stopped by Cath’s ‘office’ and she had returned to her post already. As promised (or threatened, depending on one’s point of view), Cath inserted a computer chip in all of their phones, even Grace’s, to track their location. She smiled and winked at Grace and was rewarded with a giggle. Cath told them that if they were ever in danger, or even just thought they were, to text ‘kokua,’ Hawaiian for ‘help,’ and she would send security to their location.

With the exception of Cath, sailors stopped and stared at the civilian procession. There were a lot of double-takes as sailors realized that the XO was leading the ‘people that had flown on TV, for real.’ Steve wasn’t surprised that the entire ship could ID them, the scuttlebutt on an enclosed area was faster than the speed of sound, it sometimes seemed. The smarter ones used the excuse of saluting the XO to get an eyeful of the celebrities. Robins’ presence insured that they didn’t stare for too long. They all had work to do. If they didn’t, Robins gave them some. The first sailor to attempt to take a picture of the procession got thrown in the brig. No one else tried. Steve was impressed on how Robins quietly disciplined the petty officer without scaring Grace.

“Next, the bridge. It’s a bit adrift,” he warned Grace. “Don’t mind the noise, Miss Williams.”

The bridge was twenty men running in thirty different directions. The captain was directing the mess. “I want them all gone. Don’t forget the Binnacle List. If they can’t justify the division’s existence with our new mission, I want them gone. What’s their ETD?”

Someone on the other end of the cacophony answered.

“Not good enough. Tell them to pack up and get topside ASAP.”

Robins got in the captain’s line of sight and everyone hushed. They were as curious about Danno and his family as the enlisted personnel. The captain strode over to the 5-O team. There was a genuine smile on his face. “Welcome aboard the USS Enterprise. We look forward to being a part of history. The cabins have been emptied and are ready for your presence. The wardroom will be your mess whenever you’re hungry. We are clearing out a locker for your offices. Robins will be available to you at any time you need anything. As soon as we have safety procedures in place, there will be drills.” The captain looked a bit harassed, “but they haven’t been written yet.” Now he addressed Robins more than the 5-O team. “We shifted her bearing 5 degrees. Staying on the move. As of yet, word of your location hasn’t leaked, but that will change shortly. Hopefully, soon we’ll have a chance to share a meal.” The captain shook everyone’s hand and then the CPO appeared at his elbow.


“If you’ll excuse me. I’m leaving you in the best of hands; Robins will take care of all your needs.” The captain dived right back into the chaos.

Robins stepped forward. “Let’s get you squared away.” Steve thought that he would have preferred being in the middle of the chaos, but he’d return soon enough. “This way.” It was a short walk to the cabins. “Mrs. Edwards what is your housing preference?”

“I’ll stay with Daniel and Grace,” Rachel declared. Danny didn’t look too surprised –or horrified- at the announcement.

Robins nodded. “Then this will be your billet.”

Rachel poked her head inside at the rather Spartan room. The bed was at least big enough for two. A cot was situated in the corner for Grace, or for Danny, depending on Rachel’s mood. “Thank you,” she told Robins. Steve wondered if she realized that it was the captain’s own cabin. She looked questioningly at Danny.

He shook his head. “I want to know where everyone else will be staying first.”

There was something in his tone that Rachel understood. Probably because it related to Grace’s safety. Danny took that extremely seriously, even if he and Rachel often disagreed with his methods. She decided to trust him in this case.

Grace tried to whisper in his ear. “I need the bathroom.”

Danny looked to Rachel and she nodded. Danny set his daughter down for the first time since her kidnapping. Grace reached for her mother’s hand immediately. She looked longingly at her father, wanting both of her safety nets in view.

“I’ll be right down the hall,” he promised.

Grace breathed deep and nodded. “Okay.”

“Yell if you need me.”

“Okay. Love you, Danno.”

“Love you more.” He hugged her again.

No one made a comment about him returning in five minutes. The girl had just had her entire world turned upside down and was in shock from her kidnapping. The females disappeared through the door.

Robins called out softly, “Torre?” A woman in a tac vest and armed stood in the doorway behind them. “She’s security on this end and their bodyguard if need be. Booker is on the other end. He’s solid. No one will get into this passageway without written orders from myself or the captain.”

“Good,” Danny answered. “I want her file before making her the girls’ permanent bodyguard. And Booker’s too.”

“Of course, sir. I’ll also get you the files of their scheduled relief, several alternate personnel files and those suggested as security for the rest of the team.”


“If you follow me.” Robins skipped the XO’s cabin, that Steve bet now housed the captain, and moved lower into the ranks. “This will be Lt. Commander McGarrett’s. This will be Officer Kelly’s and this next one Officer Kalakaua’s billet. Any questions?” They were only a hundred feet away from each other.

“Not at this time,” Steve answered for the team.

“I imagine that you have much to discuss. I will leave you to it. If you need anything at all, please do not hesitate to contact me.” Robins saluted because of respect not because it was required. “I hope this year is pleasant for you all.” He turned on his heel. As soon as he was through the door and second shadow stood in the doorway. It was the other security guard, Booker, keeping the enlisted from getting too adventurous.

Kono walked into her billet and collapsed on the bed, shoes and all. “It’s been a long day, brah.”

“That it has,” Chin agreed. He imitated his cousin in his quarters.

Steve and Danny remained in the semi-privacy of the passageway. Both were intimately aware of the armed person behind them.

“What do you think of the ship?” Steve asked.

“Seeing as it’ll be completely different in the morning?” Danny asked back.

Steve huffed a laugh. “That it will. Knock on the door when you want dinner. It’s gonna be s’ghetti.”

“Don’t wanna miss that,” Danny quipped. “See you then.” He disappeared into the captain’s cabin. Steve could hear Gracie’s squeal of joy with his arrival.

Steve let himself into his temporary abode. Steve’s berth was bigger than his last billet. It would do for a year. He checked the bed. Fresh sheets, perfect corners. It was a nice touch. He checked the mattress and was pleased with its firmness.

“Lieutenant Commander?” Steve turned to look and the petty officer saluted. “The XO would like to see you in the conference room. Right away, sir.”

Steve nodded and followed. He was somewhat familiar with the Enterprise now, but he had traveled on many ships and the layout of each one was similar enough and different enough to be confusing.

Robins was waiting for him in the conference room. “This concerns the CIA analyst, Ms. Kaye.”

Steve looked at the XO’s serious expression and sat down opposite the man. Jenna was dead.

“Her body was found at 5-O HQ. A bullet to the head. Execution style.”

“Does HPD have any leads? Who’s handling the investigation?”

“NCIS is, but she left a message in the event of her death.”

A pit developed in Steve’s stomach. Jenna… had been playing two sides of a fence, but which fence? Then Steve realized that there was only one fence and Wo Fat had been on the other side.

Damn it, Jenna.

“I’ll leave you to view it in privacy.” Robins tilted his head at the monitor and handed Steve the remote. He left the room and closed the door behind him. Steve didn’t dally. He pushed play immediately.

Jenna Kaye sat in front of the video camera and Steve knew this was going to be as bad as feared. “Steve,” she started. “If you’re viewing this, then Wo Fat decided that I was a loose end. I’m sorry. I’m hoping that he had me taken out because you had won against him. I am cheering for you, but he has my fiancé. My fiancé is still alive as long as I feed him information. I am truly sorry and good luck. Anything that I’ve withheld from you while I was alive is in the same folder as this message. If you didn’t get him before I died, I hope you get him after.”

The message ended and Steve checked the timestamp. She had recorded it only a couple days after they had ‘decided to work together.’ Steve now understood that Jenna had been sent to 5-O specifically to gain access to 5-O’s inner circle. She had done her job. Steve just hoped that Jenna hadn’t been the one to tell Wo Fat about what sarin had done to Danno’s wings. He would never tell Danny his suspicions. He didn’t want to mar Jenna’s memory. There were plenty of medical personnel that had witnessed Danno’s wings during the sarin incident; any one of them could have sold the information to Wo Fat. Or gossiped to someone who sold the information to Wo Fat. Steve bet that the entire hospital was buzzing with news about Danny’s wings.

Steve tried to forget the conversation he had had with Jenna in the hospital, where she had asked if Danny had any family and Steve had told her about Gracie and Rachel. Or the one later on when Jenna had warned that several physicians were calling 5-O headquarters wanting to know more about Danny’s wings.

“She told Wo Fat.”

Steve jumped at Danny’s sad voice. He hadn’t heard his partner’s approach. He wondered how long he had been standing there. Who had told Danny where to find Steve? Most likely, the same petty officer that had told Steve. Robins had probably directed him into this conference room. The military as a whole had decided to tell Danny the truth to his every question. They didn’t want Danny to get the impression that they were withholding information; Steve had warned against that in the contract. “We don’t know that.”

“She said that her fiancé was still alive. She had managed to dance to Wo Fat’s tune for over a year. I’m betting that a year ago she wouldn’t have considered putting a child at risk just because of her principles. And it would have to be the principle of the matter since she had never met Grace. But now, a year later? How much torture had her fiancé endured? How many times had Wo Fat punished the fiancé for Jenna’s principles? How much longer could her fiancé endure?”

“She should have known that Wo Fat would never keep his side of the deal.”

“At that point, all she had was hope. Hope is strong.”

Steve couldn’t argue with that. “You aren’t mad?”

“I’m furious,” Danny countered. “But she’s dead. Her fiancé is probably dead and we’re alive. I’m in shock. Who am I supposed to yell at?”

It made a little too much sense for Danny. “Did someone slip you a valium?”

“Cute, Steven, real cute.”

“You want to find the wardroom? See if they’ve started serving the garlic bread?” asked Steve.

Danny shrugged. “Why not? I need to pick up the girls first.”


That night, Steve and the rest of the transplanted civilians sat in their private mess and caught up. Cath joined them at Danny’s invite. None of them wanted to be alone at the moment. The spaghetti dinner had been delicious and picked up by a pair of wide-eyed petty officers. Grace slept between her parents, so everyone spoke softly. The future was too uncertain. So instead of talking about that, they talked about how all of them safely arrived on the Enterprise.

Chin had texted Kamekona and the big native had picked up Rachel as planned. He had gotten Rachel to safety because no one had expected a (wealthy) VIP to be traveling via a shaved ice truck. Kamekona hadn’t been told the entire truth but as soon as Grace had been kidnapped, Rachel had known that if there was a chance to escape, Grace would use her wings and expose the secret. So when Kamekona had appeared on her doorstep saying that Chin said that Danny had found ‘the kei-kei’ and that their reunion had been televised, Rachel had been ready with several bags packed for her and her daughter. Those bags had been unpacked in their cabin before they had been shown their new room. Whatever happened to Step-Stan, Steve would have to glean from Danny later.

Danny had flown Grace to the pre-arranged location in the middle of a state preserve. Danny had planned for their safe place as soon as Grace had been kidnapped. So Kono and Chin had managed to ditch any of the reporters or tourists and meet them in Kono’s car. Chin’s motorcycle had been abandoned in front of the Hilton. Kono had driven in circles, in the direction of the naval base. They were waiting on the return text from Cath. It was then that Steve found out that with the contract text, Chin had also sent a video of him and Danno flying out to Wo Fat’s ship.

Cath had gotten the text right about the time the first news cast had interrupted regular programming. So the ship’s entire chain of command was watching as Cath demanded to speak with the captain. The captain hadn’t fully read the contract before moving it up to SECNAV who sent it to the President, and told the Enterprise to send Steve a helicopter and to transport the rest of 5-O to safety. By then, the captain (and probably Robins) had poured over the contract and knew what was expected of them. They had to keep 5-O and family safe and happy and in exchange they’d have a chance of having flying soldiers. First, they had to get 5-O somewhere secure, preferably on the Enterprise. Cath had triangulated Chin’s phone and the captain sent a helicopter directly to their current location. A sailor had asked for the keys to Kono’s car. He promised to drive it to a secure location on base. A second sailor had requested everyone else’s keys. He was in charge of securing all other personal property. Steve would have to find out where all their personal belongings were stored.

“What about the rest of your family?” Danny finally asked Kono. “You’re related to like half of the islands.”

“Most of them are cops,” Kono reminded him. “Don’t worry about it. HPD is circling around them. We’re getting tons of text messages. Everyone is proud that we are part of the impossible. Tourism has already gone up. All the hotels are booked solid. Some people say it must be something in the water that three people are showing up with real wings all at once.”

“What? What? No!” Danny was horrified. “This is not a Hawaii thing. No way is this pineapple-infested island getting credit for a Jersey thing. Nah-uh, no way.”

“You really want to attract attention to your family?” Chin Ho asked.

Danny paused for a moment, state pride warring with his need to keep his family safe. It was only a moment before his family’s safety won out. “Fine. So how are you taking care of my family in Jersey? Since you bright people thought of everything else.”

“Everyone’s bunkered down in your father’s old fire station until everything dies down. I personally called your father and told him that the secret was out while we were flying out to the meet. I like your da. He understood immediately and kept a calm head.”

“Firefighter. The only time I ever saw him flip out was when my mom had passed out. She was pregnant and hadn’t known it. He and I came home and found her on the kitchen floor, disoriented. That was the only time.”

Chin hmmmed. “I got the impression that he lost a bet.”

“Lost a bet,” Danny echoed dangerously.

“Hmm-mm, with family members. I think they had a bet on when your secret would spill.”

Danny didn’t appear to be surprised. “It could be true. Man, I hope not, but the family bets on everything. Even the kids. Everyone puts in a quarter –or in the high stakes kitty, a dollar- and places their bet. When babies are going to born, how big they’re goin’ to be, especially. What time certain family member will arrive from out of state. Stuff like that.”

“We have something like that,” Kono jumped in. “The aunties pay in a quarter and whichever one had the biggest grandchild that year gets the kitty.”

Danny laughed and the rest of the table joined in. The rest of the night was Danny vs. Kono and Chin telling the most outrageous family story. The rest of them laughed until they hurt. They kept at it past mid-night. Then Steve’s memory got a little fuzzy. He thought he might have heard Danny tell Chin that flying was exhausting as shoes and socks were removed and he was being tucked into bed.

But he might have dreamed that.

(part 3)