Crash and Burn - Chapter 26: Ho’omaha

Once all the pieces of the puzzle had fallen into place, their double homicide had really been an open and shut case. The honeymooners had been shot in the back of their heads, execution style, the ballistics matched the rounds to the Glock the scarred Yakuza had held to Rachel Edwards’ stomach.

The armed robbery had also turned out to be a diversion, forcing the HPD to concentrate all their efforts in one place, preventing anyone from calling them for backup. Only one of the robbers had been apprehended—after receiving an injury, his colleagues had left him behind—and his record had showed strong ties to the Yakuza chapter on the islands.

It had all been masterfully orchestrated by Wo Fat, and if it hadn’t been for a tiny little woman who seriously lacked in self-preservation, he would’ve succeeded.

The only downside to it all, Danny mused the next day as he compiled the report, was the fact the little spitfire hadn’t left anyone alive to possibly tell them where Wo Fat was hiding.

But he couldn’t hold that tidbit against her. She had, after all saved his daughter and his ex-wife. If she hadn’t killed those bastards, he’d more than happy do it himself. Though, he flexed his fingers at the memory, punching Stan ‘the Asshole’ last night had felt pretty good. And the idiot hadn’t even understood the reason behind the punch. He’d been had by Wo Fat and he probably still didn’t get it. What a schmuck.

When she was better, he might even attempt to persuade Sabrina to have a go at Stan. He grinned at the mental picture. He’d make sure to have plenty of popcorn handy for that show.

He sighed, fiddling with the cane he still kept around for emergencies. The report was finished and he was bored. Kono and Chin were out pumping their informants for any intel on Wo Fat, Sabrina was still in the hospital, and Steve...God only knew where Steve was. He hasn’t seen his partner ever since the previous afternoon.

Whatever had gone down in that room hadn’t been good. Steve had looked like a storm cloud with a deep under layer of pain, while Sabrina had barely held back tears. And tears of sadness in those eyes was a sight one probably saw once in a decade, so much control she had over her emotions. Well, except where Steve was concerned.

Which made the other-guy theory a load of crock, if they asked him. Not that anyone bothered, that is. And Danny also appeared to be the only one who noticed the eyeballing from either party when the other wasn’t looking. It was high-school all over again. Only with a commando wardrobe, ninja skills, and lots of firepower.

He rubbed his fingers on his chin. He had no idea how the governor was involved, but it sure wasn’t romantically. At least not with Sabrina. Not that anyone asked for his input on that one either. And he sure wouldn’t venture into theorizing territory with Steve on that issue. His friend wouldn’t listen. Stubborn, blind, besotted idiot.

When a glance at his phone showed it was past noon and there was still no sign of Steve, Danny decided to call him. One never knew with his partner. He might’ve fallen off a cliff, got shot, ended up in prison...That was Steve for you.

But it turned out to be nothing extreme. Steve was simply holed up on the rifle range in the Marine base with Joe White, shooting at the hill.

Business as usual? Sure, if it wasn’t past noon. This was more. Frustration, probably, mixed with a nice heaping of guilt, and a seasoning of other feelings that were bubbling close to Steve’s surface these days.

So with nothing better to do, Danny went out to grab a bite and make a short visit.

Hawaii Medical Center East

Sabrina’s thumb was going through a heavy exercise regime as she channel surfed, but the tiny television mounted on the wall in front of her didn’t yield anything interesting. She wasn’t a fan of talk-shows, even less of soap-operas, and that was pretty much all they ran early in the afternoon. She had hoped for some cartoons, but her hopes were quickly squashed.

Hitting the same soap-opera channel for the third time, she threw in the towel. She shut the TV off, threw the remote to the foot of her bed, huffed, picked up her little cup of water, and sucked on the straw.

Another night. She had to spend another night in here. Which meant the entire afternoon, the whole night, and the next morning, before they discharged her. People went insane for a lot less.

A huge flower arrangement in bright yellow and orange hues poking through the door caught her attention, and she grinned as it was followed by the fair, slicked-up do of Detective Danny Williams.

“Hey you,” she whispered. “Playing hooky?”

He smiled back. “No, just taking a long lunch.”

“How very Hawaiian of you.”

Danny chuckled, trying not to stare at her neck. The bruising was even more prominent this morning, having turned from purple to black. “These are for you,” he said placing the flowers beside the heart monitor. “I didn’t know which you liked, so I got you a little bit of everything. You’re not allergic, right?”

“No,” she wheezed, “and they’re lovely, thank you. You shouldn’t have.”

He smiled, sat on the chair beside the bed. “It’s a small token compared to what you’ve done for me, Reena.”

She grinned, her heart warming. It was the first time he’s used the diminutive of her name. “I was just doing my duty,” she whispered.

Danny felt a strange moistness gather in his eyes at the heart this woman had shown the previous day. It had gone beyond the call of duty and they all knew it. “Every woman deserves flowers,” he said, noticing his were the only ones in the room. “Am I the first to visit?”

She shook her head. “Kamekona was here earlier. He brought me a big cone of shaved ice, which is apparently good for my throat, Marc is coming by later with some reading material, and Rachel is bringing Grace around after school.”

“They’re not discharging you?” It was strange talking to her while she could only whisper back. He only hoped he didn’t tire her too much.

“Nope.” She settled more comfortably on the bed. “Apparently death caused by strangulation can occur up to 36 hours after the fact. They’re being thorough, they say. I claim it’s a conspiracy.”

She started coughing and he knew he’s outstayed his welcome. “I’ll leave you to it, then. Take care of your voice, Reena.”

He took her hand, kissed the back of it, and smiled in goodbye.

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