Maddie sighed, as the plane took off. She had been in Afghanistan again for the last year and a half, bringing soldiers to and from the front.
Now though, she was heading back to her base in Hawaii. Her home.
She knew Steve was in Hawaii, running a special taskforce, for the Governor.
She had been in touch with her fathers old friend Chin Ho Kelly, who had told her where they worked. Maddie was planning a surprise drop in for Steve, when she landed.
She hadn't seen him for almost two years again; once he had been cleared for duty again, they had sent him on several mission with the SEAL's, and when he had finally come back to Hawaii himself for his fathers funeral, she had been away in 'Stan.
Maddie hated herself for missing Jack's funeral, but she hadn't been able to get any leave. She had called Steve, and told him she was sorry for not being able to be there. But it wasn't the same thing.
True to their promise made almost 8 years ago, they hadn't lost each other over the years; they had written when they could, called each other whenever they were able. Maddie's new team were the one's who had taken Steve's SEAL team to South Korea, when he was tracking Victor and Anton Hesse.
Maddie shuddered whenever she thought of those brothers.
Hate didn't even begin to cover what she felt for them, so she couldn't even imagine what Steve must feel.
Chin had told her about the bromance between Steve and his new partner Dectective Danny Williams; if he was anything like Chin had described, Maddie couldn't wait to meet him.
Steve needed friends, no matter what he said. She knew being in the SEAL's had taught him to keep his emotions hidden, and not to let anyone in, but he had never been that way with her.
So if he was letting the team in, she was happy.
But for now she had a 12 hour flight ahead of her, so she put her seat as far back as she could, and closed her eyes.
Steve pulled himself faster, cutting through the water until his arms grew tired. Once he was far enough out, that his house was significantly smaller, he stopped, treading water.
Taking a few deep breaths, he kicked his legs harder, enjoying the burn in his muscles.
A couple more deep breaths, and he started back to the shore.
Once he reached the beach, he grabbed his towel off of his chair, and dried his hair, before wrapping it around his waist.
He made his way inside, and went upstairs for a shower.
7 minutes later he was standing in his room getting dressed. After pulling his polo shirt over his head, he took his dog-tags of of the bedside cabinet and put them on.
Reading the message again, like he did every morning, Steve smiled.
He knew Maddie was in Afghanistan, and was waiting for the phone call he knew would be coming soon. She usually called every few weeks, or as regularly as she could.
Steve always hated those phone calls, because it reminded him that she was in constant danger.
God if he got that call...
Shaking his head clear of those dreadful thoughts, he made his way back downstairs to grab his keys and head into HQ.
Steve was the first one in, as usual, and sat at his desk trying to find a way out of doing the paperwork that was sat in front of him.
He looked up when he heard the cousins voices.
''...and it's today?'' Kono asked, excitedly.
''Yeah, I got the call last night.'' Chin answered, smiling at her excitement.
Steve came out of his office, and walked over to the main console.
''What's going on?'' He asked.
Kono shot a look at Chin, ''An old friends coming to visit, the plane lands soon.'' Chin said, calmly.
Steve nodded, ''Are you picking them up?''
He needed to know if Chin needed to take off for a while, in case something came up.
Chin said he didn't need to, she already had something arranged.
Steve didn't miss the mysterious glances the cousins shared, throughout the day. They weren't working a case at the moment, so they were just doing paperwork in the office, giving Steve the chance to watch Chin watch the clock.
Steve had always thought of Chin as the calm zen-like one, but that afternoon he was almost as fidgety as Kono.
His surveillance was cut short when Danny entered his office, and sat down in one of the chairs.
''You need something?'' Steve asked, amused.
''Have you noticed anything strange with them today?'' Danny said, ignoring Steves question.
Figuring Danny was talking about Chin and Kono, he nodded.
''Chin said an old friend was visiting or something...''
Danny rolled his eyes, ''For someone with Army training, you can be so obtuse Steven...''
Steve frowned at him, ''Okay first, it's the Navy, Danny. Second, I am not obtuse.''
''Yes you are. You think an old friend visiting, could make Chin act that way?'' He gestured over his shoulder.
Steve looked over Danny's shoulder; Chin was sat at the console, doing something with the computer, and tapping his foot on the floor.
Steve raised his eyebrows at that. Chin didn't tap.
''Okay Einstein, what do you think it is?'' Steve asked.
''A woman.'' Danny answered, simply.
Shaking his head, Steve decided to point out the flaw in that observation.
''Let's say you're right, why is Kono just as bad?''
Danny's smirk fell a little bit at Steve's question.
Steve smiled triumphantly.
Glowering Danny stood and went over to the door, ''You just wait, Rambo, you'll see. This is all because of a woman...''
After Danny left, Steve couldn't concentrate on the words in front of him.
There was only one woman who could make him that nervous.
And she was on the other side of the world.
When Maddie and her team finally arrived back at base, she went down to the special parking lot, that all the off shore soldiers used, to collect her truck. From there she went to her house, dropped her things off in the doorway, and left again.
This time though, she punched the co-ordinates that Chin had given her into the GPS.
Maddie heart was thumping widly in her chest, as she pulled into the parking lot at the Five-0 headquarters.
She took a minute to compose herself, then climbed from her truck and walked up to the front doors.
Chin had told her the offices were on the third floor, so she took the stairs two at a time. Maddie didn't really like using elevators, she preferred the stairs.
Finally she was standing outside the big glass doors, Chin had mentioned.
As she put her hand on the handle to go in, she spotted Kono through the glass. If she looked up, she would see Maddie.
Feeling only a little stupid, Maddie waved her hand in the air to get her attention.
Kono glanced up, and her face broke out into a huge grin.
She casually came towards the door, and slipped out.
As soon as the door closed behind her, she was hugging Maddie.
''It's nice to see you too, Kono!'' Maddie said, laughing.
''How are you?'' Kono asked, still smiling.
Maddie nodded, and decided to tweak the truth a little.
''I'm good. What about you?''
Kono shrugged, ''I'm great. Happy there is another girl around now.''
Maddie hugged her again.
''Glad to be here.'' She said, happily.
''Is Steve here?'' Maddie asked, pulling away.
Kono nodded, ''He's in his office, doing everything he can to avoid doing his paperwork.''
Maddie grinned, ''Well let's go relieve him of that torture...''
Kono smirked as Maddie told her the plan.
Steve shot out of his chair as he heard Kono scream.
He pulled his office door open, and ran out looking around for any kind of threat. Danny was stood by Chin at the console, clutching his side with laughter. Kono was leaning casually against the door frame of her own office.
Nothing out of the ordinary.
''You okay there, Super SEAL?'' A voice said from behind him.
Steve slowly turned around, a smile curving his lips upwards.
And there she was. The woman who was supposed to be on the other side of the world.
''Never better.'' He answered, smiling.
Maddie nodded, thoughtfully.
''Oh...cause I heard something about paperwork, and we both know what your handwriting is like...''
Her words were cut off, as Steve hugged her quickly.
She held him tightly, but he pulled away when somone cleared their throat.
''Shut it, Danno.'' Steve grumbled.
''Danno?'' Maddie asked, looking at the only person here that she didn't know.
''Dectective Danny Williams, nice to meet you.'' He said, a little wearily.
''As I was saying,'' Steve said, throwing Danny a look. ''Danny, this is Maddison-''
Maddie punched him on the arm.
''32 years of friendship and you still make the mistake of calling me Maddison?'' Maddie said, incredulously.
Danny, Kono and Chin all laughed as Steve rubbed his arm.
She turned to Danny, ''Maddie Sinclair, nice to meet you, Dectective Danny Williams.''
Steve seemed to recover, ''Are you staying at your father's old house?''
Maddie nodded, ''Yeah, I came from there.''
Steve told her to come into his office so they could talk.
''How are you?'' He said, seriously, once they were seated on his couch.
Maddie shrugged, ''I could be worse.''
Steve stared at her for a moment, ''Come to mine for dinner tonight. We can get pizza and have a beer.'' Steve knew Maddie didn't drink wine, she preferred a good bottle of beer.
Maddie smiled, ''That sounds ridiculously good...''
After spending over a year in a war-zone, and two years away from Steve, pizza sounded like heaven.
*Lokahi = Unity
Usual Disclaimer: I still don't own anything but my OC's and the plot line!
As Maddie walked up to Steve's front door, later that evening, she recalled the last time she had been there.
It had been the day before she left for 'Stan, and she had visited Jack for the last time.
They had talked about Steve mostly, but also about the job her team was going to be doing. Maddie couldn't say a lot about it, because there were things that could compromise the teams safety. Which is something she would not allow.
But now she reminded herself that it was a different McGarrett waiting for her behind that door.
The thought brought a smile to her face.
Just before she reached the door, Steve opened it and smiled.
''Hey...'' He said, moving out of the way for her to come in.
''Hey, yourself.'' She grinned.
Steve shut the door behind her, and told her to take a seat while he finished getting things ready.
Maddie frowned a little at that; what happened to the simple pizza and beer idea?
Steve went out on to the lanai, took a look around, assuring himself that everything was where it was meant to be, and called for Maddie to come out.
He watched her eyes widen as she took in the back yard.
''Wow...'' Maddie breathed.
When they were both seven, they had gone through a phase of wanting to be outside all the time. So Jack and Maddie's father Kevin, had put up a tent in the McGarrett's back yard, and let them stay in it for seven whole nights.
Steve and Maddie had made it a annual thing that they did every summer. One year Mary had decided to join them for one night, but she changed her mind, when a shadow passed over the tent and freaked her out.
Now, Steve had done pretty much the same thing, but with more cushions and covers on the ground. There was a table to the side of the tent, with a couple of pizza boxes on and two six-packs of beer.
''What are you thinking?'' Steve asked, curiously.
Maddie laughed, ''I'm thinking, that if we drink all of that beer we won't be able to get back up again.''
Steve chuckled, and took her hand to pull her towards the table.
They sat down, and Steve pushed a pizza box towards her, along with a longboard.
After they ate, they took their drinks further down the yard, to the beach.
''This is one of the things I missed most in 'Stan...'' Maddie said, wistfully, as they sat down on the sand.
Steve remained quiet, waiting for her to elaborate.
''People say that the sunset is the same everywhere, but I can honestly say, that I have never seen one like this before anywhere else.'' She added, waving a hand at the distant sky.
Steve nodded; when he had lived on the mainland, he would go to the clearing he showed to Maddie, and watch the sunset. But it was never the same as it was at home.
''I remember when we were kids, and we stayed out here for a whole week...I really believed that when the sun actually set, it went into the ocean. I wouldn't listen to my mother she told me, that I was wrong...'' Maddie said, smiling.
Maddie was always thinking about her mother, but she rarely spoke of her. Maddie had only been 8 when they had diagnosed her with the brain tumor. The doctors had been able to remove it, but a couple of years later it had come back again. Only this time, it was inoperable. Her mother, Helen, had fought for 3 more years, before her body just couldn't take it anymore. Maddie had stayed in the bedroom with her father, while her mother slipped away.
Earlier, after leaving Steve's office, Maddie had gone home to un-pack and get settled, but even after all this time, she still couldn't go into that room.
If it hadn't been for Steve, Maddie wasn't sure what she would have done...
''You were terrifed that first night in the tent.'' Steve mused.
Maddie gasped, indignantly, ''I was not! It was you and your childish tricks.''
Steve grinned, ''Well I was seven...''
Maddie huffed, but let that one go.
''Have you been to the clearing lately?'' Maddie asked softly, a moment later.
Steve shook his head; it would've felt weird knowing Maddie wouldn't be there too.
''No, but it's my day off tomorrow. We could go, if you want...?'' Steve answered.
Maddie laid back on the sand, and smiled up at the stars that were just starting to come out.
''I'd like that...''
''You see it?'' Maddie asked, as she pointed at the constellation.
Steve frowned, ''No...''
Maddie sighed, ''You always were obtuse...''
Steve laughed, making Maddie sit up and look at him.
Steve shook his head, ''That's the second time today that I have been called obtuse. First Danny, now you. I am not obtuse.''
Maddie patted his arm, ''Sorry Super SEAL, but Danny is a dectective, therefore he must be right.''
Steve laughed again; he felt more relaxed now than he had in a long time. The laughter came easier somehow. Then again, it always had with Maddie.
''Tell me more about Danny.'' Maddie said.
Rolling his eyes, Steve complied.
''He has a daughter, and an ex-wife that he is re-marrying. Who is also pregnant with their second child...''
Maddie rasied her eyebrows; she thought her relationship with Steve was complicated.
''Erm...how old is their daughter?'' Maddie finally asked.
Steve glanced over at her, ''About eight...''
''Sammy's age...'' She muttered, to herself.
''Who's Sammy?'' Steve asked, confused.
Maddie remembered then that she hadn't told him about her Godson.
''Oh, he's Logan's son. You remember Logan?,'' Steve nodded. ''Well Logan and Charlotte asked me to be Sammy's Godmother when her was born.'' She said.
Steve sat-up, ''You never told me you had a Godson.''
She shrugged, ''Never came up...'' It was a lame excuse and she knew it.
But Steve let it go anyway, for now.
''Her name's Grace. Danny's hoping for a boy next.'' He said, going back to their original topic.
''How long until the birth?'' Maddie asked, smiling.
''Four months.'' Steve said. Danny mentioned it at least twice a day, but Steve couldn't blame him. If he was going to be a father, he'd be pretty excited too.
Steve frowned as that last thought entered his head. Him...a father?
He looked down at the bottle in his hand, and set it aside. He had obviously had too much beer.
Maddie noticed the strange look on his face, but dismissed it when he out his beer down.
''How long do you have off?'' Steve asked, breaking the silence.
''My team gets a week, then we go back to simple jobs.'' She replied.
A week didn't sound like a long time, but when they had been living on adrenaline for almost 18 months, it was like an eternity.
She couldn't wait to sleep.
''Like scaling down cliff faces, and jumping hundreds of feet into the ocean from an helicopter?'' Steve said, sarcastically.
Maddie chuckled, ''Something like that.''
Her eyes were starting to grow heavy, the jet-lag kicking in. The yawn got past her defences, before she could stop it.
Steve saw and nudged her gently, ''You're welcome to the guest room.''
Maddie smiled gratefully, she didn't think she could make the drive home. Plus she'd been drinking.
''You're the best...'' She said.
Steve laughed again, ''I know...now go inside before I have to carry you.''
She stood up, swaying just a little, and took a few steps towards the house.
''You coming?'' She asked, turning back to look at Steve.
He was still sat on the sand, staring at the dark waves.
''Yeah, I'll be there in a minute.'' He replied.
''Okay...can I borrow a shirt?'' She said, smiling. If she was staying, she needed something to sleep in.
Steve looked over his shoulder at her, ''Sure, first room at the top of the stairs. Top drawer, next to the closet.''
Maddie could hear the smile in his voice.
She grinned to herself, as she made her way back to the house and inside. Taking the stairs slowly, so she didn't miss a step, in her current slightly drunk state, she went into the Steve's room and took a shirt out of the drawer.
As she shut the it, the moonlight from the widow caught something sitting on top of the bedside cabinet.
Maddie's curiousity took over, and she picked it up.
It was Steve's dog-tags. The one's she had given him when they were seventeen.
Tears prickled at the back of her eyes.
''You okay?'' Steve asked, from the doorway.
''You kept them.'' She said, turning to face him with the present still in her hands.
Steve glanced down, and he raised a hand to his neck absently.
''I said I would. I must have forgotten to put them back on after my shower...'' Maddie made her way towards him, and stood in front of him.
Slowly she reached into the neck of her own shirt and pulled the locket out.
''You kept it.'' Steve echoed, staring at her.
''A promise is a promise.'' Maddie returned.
They stood like that for a few moments, before Maddie spoke again.
''I should get to bed, before I fall over...''
''Are you really that drunk?'' He said, amused.
Shaking her head, she scooted past him, ''I'm that tired...''
''Goodnight Super SEAL...'' She said, walking down the hall.
''Night, Maddie.'' He replied, shutting his bedroom door.
Leaning against it, he closed his eyes, against the urge to go into the guest bedroom and kiss her just like in the past.
Remembering their plans to go hiking to the clearing tomorrow, his eyes opened and he smiled.
Tomorrow would be interesting...
Disclaimer: I really really REALLY wish that I owned Steve, but alas, I do not,on the upside, I do own Maddie. ^_^
Maddie woke up the next morning to the smell of fresh coffee.
Bringing a hand up to swipe at her eyes, she peeked through her eyelids.
''Super SEAL?'' She murmured, groggily.
Steve was stood by the doorway, fully dressed with a steaming cup of coffee in his hand.
''Morning, sunshine.'' She grinned. ''After all the alcohol you drank last night, I figured you would need this.'' He said, lifting the cup.
Maddie hummed appreciatively, and pushed herself up onto her elbows. Her head pounded, like a jack-hammer.
''What time is it?'' She asked, as he passed her the drink.
''Just after seven...'' He chuckled.
''Damn SEAL...'' She groaned.
''Get dressed, I'll be downstairs. Then we can leave...'' Steve said, moving towards the door.
Maddie nodded, ''I'll be right there...''
As Steve reached the bottom of the stairs, there was a light knock on the front door.
Opening it he found Danny and Grace standing there. Steve figured Grace was the one who knocked; Danny never knocked, he just walked in like he owned the place.
''Hey Gracie. Danno.'' Steve smiled.
''Gracie was concerned about you spending the day alone. You know with your psychotic tendencies, anything could happen, so I figured I should indulge her instincts...'' Danny said, coming into the living room and sitting down on the couch.
Steve looked towards the stairs; Danny would have a field day if he saw Maddie come downstairs.
''Well it's nice to know you care, Danny.'' Steve quipped.
''Uncle Steve?'' Grace said. ''Who do these belong too?''
Steve glanced down to her hands; Maddie shoes.
''Steve, have you seen my-'' Maddie called from upstairs.
Danny's eyebrows shot up. Grace was frowning, and looking at the ceiling.
Well the cover was already blown...
''Yeah, they're down here!'' He called back, guessing she was talking about her shoes.
She came down the stairs, and stopped when she spotted Grace.
''Oh...'' She said.
Grace was staring at her, with her head slightly tilted to the side.
Maddie seemed to recover from the initial shock.
''Hey, you must be Grace. I'm Maddie...'' She smiled, at the little girl in front of her.
''Hello. Are you Uncle Steve's girlfriend?'' Grace asked, innocently.
Steve ran a hand down his face, in concealed embarrassment.
Maddie grinned, ''Nah, just his friend.''
Steve couldn't help but feel a little disappointed at her reponse.
Grace nodded, and went to play with her dolls at the coffee table.
Maddie came down the rest of the stairs, and stood next to Steve.
''You know we could always go another time...'' She started.
''Where are you going?'' Danny asked, from the couch.
''We were going to go hiking, Danny.'' Steve answered.
Grace's eyes lit-up, she jumped up from the floor, and went over to her father.
''Danno, can we go?'' She pleaded.
Steve shot a helpless look at Maddie. Maddie just rolled her eyes, and nodded at him.
''Please Danno?'' Her eyes were as wide as they could go, and were swimming with tears.
Danny caved like a pack of cards, ''Sure thing Monkey...''
As Steve packed previsions, Maddie went back upstairs to get ready.
She found a spare toothbrush, in the same place Steve's mother used to keep anything that was going spare. And went about her usual routine of washing her face, and removing any make-up from last night.
Maddie didn't wear make-up most of the time; the unpredictability of her job, didn't allow her too. Jumping out of a helicopter into an very wet ocean, wasn't very accommodating to any kind of make-up.
Maddie only wore it on special occasions; Birthdays, Christmas, things like that.
Her team were on constant alert; sure they had this week off. But if the command center got a call, they would be called back to base straight away.
There was just no point in spending ages putting the stuff on.
When she arrived back downstairs, Grace and Danny were having a talk about how not to run away while they were out. She avoided them and went into the kitchen looking for Steve.
''Hey, Super SEAL.'' She said, joining him at the counter.
He smiled at her, ''You okay with this?'' Steve jerked his head towards the living room.
Maddie nodded, ''I don't mind at all. Besides, the place needs a little new blood,'' She shuddered, when she heard her words back. ''Hypothetically, of course.''
They left soon after that, the four of them taking Maddie's truck to the outskirts of Honolulu. Grace was almost bouncing in her seat in excitement. Danny looked like he was seriously regretting agreeing to come along. But Steve and Maddie were in their element.
''You remember what I said back at Steve's, right Monkey?'' Danny asked, as he lifted her out of the truck.
Grace nodded seriously, ''Stay close to you, Uncle Steve or Maddie, no matter what.''
Maddie was a little surprised that Danny had told her to stay close to her if she needed too, but then again she was trained to protect people in that kind of terrain. So really it wasn't all that shocking.
Still, she smiled at him as she passed by.
Steve led the way, with Danny and Grace walking side by side in the middle and Maddie bringing up the rear.
They would all walk together once they reached the even ground which led to the clearing, but for now it was safer like that.
Grace kept telling Danny about the all the birds she was seeing, and how someone called Tommy had told her that they would eat all her brains if she got too close.
Danny just called him a goof.
Steve was chuckling at the entire conversation, making Maddie focus more on that, than what the father and daughter were saying.
It was almost lunch time when they finally reached the clearing. Grace was getting tired of walking and Danny was ranting about how they were in the shade of the trees, so one would think that it would be a heck of a lot cooler.
Steve kept nodding along, like he had already heard it all before; though according to Chin, Danny was always ranting about something. So maybe Steve had heard it before.
They all sat down on the ground and Steve pulled the food and water from his back-pack. Grace, true to her word, didn't leave Danny's side once while she waited for him to finish his food.
Steve and Maddie went to the tree a little down the path, from where they had stopped. When Maddie's mother had died, Steve had found her here in the clearing, and they had stayed there all day, just talking about nothing.
That was the day they had carved their initials into the wood. They were faded now, but if you looked hard enough, you could just about make them out.
''I remember that like it was yesterday...'' Maddie said, quietly.
And she did; the way Steve had waited for her to say something first, when he found her. It had taken a while before she could form anything close to coherent words, but he had just held her hand and been there for her.
In the way that she hadn't for him. Maddie still woke up everyday feeling guilty for not being there.
But she couldn't change the past. All she could do, was be there for him now.
And she sure as hell wasn't going to betray him again.
Steve glanced at her, ''Me too.''
Maddie gave him a small smile, and rested her head against his shoulder, before turning around and heading back to Danny and Grace.
Taking one last look at the tree, he followed her.
''I'm telling you, normal people do not do that for fun! The last time you attempted something like that, you fell off a cliff!'' Danny ranted from the passenger seat.
Steve shook his head, in mute disagreement.
Maddie and Grace were in the back seat, watching the exchange like a tennis match.
Maddie could see that the day was starting to catch up to the little girl, and guessed she would soon fall asleep. They were still a few miles outside of Honolulu, but with Steve's driving it wouldn't take too long.
Steve had taken Maddie's truck over, for the day, but she didn't mind. It was nice to be able to look out of the window for a change.
He drove back to his house, because Danny had left his car there.
He pulled into the driveway and parked the truck, before pulling the seat forward so the girls could get out.
Maddie helped Grace out this time; while Danny and Steve had been talking, the little girl had told Maddie all about her doll, Dolphin Trainer Annie, and Maddie had to admit, she thought it was pretty cool.
So when Grace had finally given into the exhaustion, she had leaned against Maddie, and fallen asleep.
Maddie didn't mind; Grace seemed like a nice kid, and after spending time with Sammy, Maddie had grown to feel semi-comfortable around children.
''Steve?'' A female voice said, from the doorstep.
They all turned towards the voice; Steve looked at Maddie in what almost looked like alarm. Danny was standing there, staring at the woman, and Maddie just stood there waiting to be clued in.
''Catherine...'' Steve said.
Catherine came forward and threw herself at Steve, wrapping her arms around his neck and started sobbing.
Maddie blinked, and looked away.
Her good mood from today, was starting to slowly slip away the longer Steve held the crying woman.
Finally, Steve managed to pry her arms away from his neck, and get her into the house.
Once she was sat down on the couch, and Steve had brought her suitcase in, Maddie and Danny came in. Grace was asleep again, only this time she was in her fathers arms.
Steve crouched down in front of Catherine, ''What's wrong? What's happened?''
Her eyes met Steve's, and Maddie couldn't help but notice the complete lack of tears, contrary to all the sobbing.
Disclaimer: Really? I still don't own Hawaii! I do own Maddie, but I swear that's all... ^_^
WARNING: Mention of abortion. Blink and you'll miss it, but it is there.
''Pregnant.'' Steve repeated, emotionlessly.
Catherine nodded, still crying tearless sobs. Steve's mind was in overdrive; everything was turning over in his head, but nothing made any sense.
''I think we should leave you guys alone...'' Danny said, heading towards the door with Grace still in his arms.
Maddie stayed where she was.
Steve couldn't even look at her yet. He hadn't told her about Catherine, now she had found out in the worst possible way; with no warning.
But for now Steve had to focus on the matter at hand; the fact that a woman who didn't have a maternal bone in her body, was currently pregnant with his child.
''It is mine, right?'' Steve asked.
Catherine let out a wail, ''Four months.''
Four months. She hadn't told him for four months?
He was going to be father, and the mother hadn't even had the decency to tell him.
''I should go.'' Maddie said, a few minutes later.
Steve looked up as she moved to the door.
He stood and went outside with her.
''You should get back inside.'' Maddie said unlocking her truck.
Steve grabbed her arm gently, ''Maddie...''
''Your girlfriend is in there, pretending to cry. You should at least go and get her an imaginary tissue.'' She snapped, less harshly than she wanted.
Her best friend was going to have a baby.
And it wasn't hers.
Steve was in shock. It was as simple as that. Of course, he didn't let it show; he put on the mask being in the SEAL's had helped him to create.
He wasn't sure if he was happy about the approaching fatherhood, or angry that Catherine didn't tell him at the start.
''Steve?'' She whispered, from the couch.
He looked at her, noticing the flinch when she met his eyes.
She didn't say anything else, so he looked away again.
How could she have not told him?
Everything had been fine this morning, now it all seemed so long ago.
He and Maddie had been laughing in the clearing, and on the trail. Now Steve was more or less sure she hated him.
He wouldn't be surprised if she did; he hadn't told her about the small fact that had been sleeping with someone else while she was away in Afghanistan.
It wasn't like they were dating or anything, but he knew he didn't feel anything for Catherine, not like he did for Maddie.
Now he had a baby to support.
Steve scrubbed a hand down his face, ''Why didn't you tell me?''
''Because I was going to fix it, so I figured-''
Steve slowly raised his head again.
''What?'' He growled.
Catherine stared at him in confusion.
''You were going to fix it?''
She nodded, ''I made the appointment and everything, but I figured I should let you know before I went through with it.'' Her tone was flippant; as if it all made perfect sense to her.
''You were going to abort my child?'' Steve said, darkly.
She looked completely bewildered now, ''Well surely you don't want it. I mean our careers-''
Steve stood up and walked out on to the lanai, before she could finish the sentence that he knew would send him over the edge.
He wanted to hit something, so hard that the pain made him forget the words ringing in his head.
'I was going to fix it...'
Two words seemingly so harmless, but they manged to send a chill up the SEAL's spine.
Steve had never really considered having kids; when he was a teenager, he had pictured himself with his own family like any other normal teenage boy. But then he joined the Navy, and he accepted that he would probably never have that. He had thought that he was okay with that fact, but now knowing that Catherine was pregnant with his child...that small teenage part of Steve needed to protect that baby with everything in him.
From now on, that was his mission. Nothing else mattered.
He would not allow her to get rid of his child.
With that decided, he marched back into the house and stood in front of the couch where she still sat.
''You stay here.'' He said, firmly.
Catherine frowned at him, ''I couldn't imp-''
Steve waved a hand, in an uncanny Danny-like gesture, ''You're carring my child. This isn't up for negotiation.''
Catherine nodded slowly, as if seeing his point.
As Steve turned around to face the stairs, he was 90% sure that he saw her smile slightly.
Maddie slammed her front door behind her, and marched up the stairs to her room.
First on her list of priorities was taking a shower. She grabbed at her clothes and tore them off, the button on her jeans actually popped off.
Muttering unintelligibly under her breath, she stormed into the bathroom, intent on washing every speck of mud and dirt from the hike off of her skin.
When she finally stepped out from under the hot water, her skin was red from the scrubbing.
As Maddie entered her room again, she heard the faint ringing of her phone from downstairs.
Securing the towel around herself, she hurried down.
''Sinclair.'' She answered.
''Maddie, are you okay? Danny told Rachel who called me, that Catherine is pregnant...oh honey.'' Kono said, in a rush.
Maddie sighed, ''I'm fine Kono. Really. Steve can date whomever he wants, it's got nothing to do with me...''
''Well hey, it's only eight, how about I come over and we watch a really stupid movie like we used too...?''
Maddie laughed, ''That sounds good, Kono. I'll see you soon.'' She hung up, and went to get dressed.
Before Maddie had left for Afghanistan, Kono had broken up with Ben, and had needed a girls night. So Maddie had suggested that she come over and laugh at all the poor pathetic people in the movies...and from then on it had become a weekly thing.
Problem was; Maddie and Steve hadn't broken up. So why did it feel like that?
Steve walked into HQ the next day, looking around for his team mates.
He was late this morning, because Catherine had asked him to take her to the nearest store.
He spotted Danny in his office, and opened the door.
''Hey, we got anything?'' Steve asked.
Danny glanced up, ''Nothing new so far.''
Nodding, Steve noticed the absense of the cousins, ''Where are Chin and Kono?''
''Chin's bike broke down, he's on his way. Kono called and said she would be in as soon as possible.''
Steve was getting tired of the short answers, ''Just say it.''
Danny finally cracked a smile, ''I told you, this was all because of a woman...''
Shaking his head, Steve left to go to his own office.
About fifteen minutes later Kono walked into the main room, and went straight to her office.
Normally Steve would have left her alone, but Kono was never late and Steve noticed that she looked pretty pissed off.
Heading out of the door, across the room, to her office, he knocked and let himself in.
''I'm busy.'' Kono cut him off.
Steve's mouth almost fell open in shock.
''Okay, well I was just wondering if-''
''I'm fine.'' She said.
Nodding Steve backed out of the office.
''You know that was a really lousy thing to do.'' Kono said, forcing Steve to stop in the doorway.
Steve knew immediately what Kono was talking about; Maddie.
He knew they were friends, so it stood to reason that Maddie had called her last night.
Kono had stayed at Maddie's last night, and crashed in the guest room. They had watched their movie and finished off a huge chocolate bar, something neither of them usually did.
All the while, Maddie had denied been hurt or upset over Steve and Catherine.
Of course Kono had seen right through it, and was royally pissed off with Steve's lack of repsonse today.
''Look Kono, I didn't even know about the pregnancy. If I had, Maddie would have been the first person I would've told.'' Steve said, tiredly.
''Yeah well, try telling that to Maddie.'' Kono answered shortly.
Steve hung his head slightly; she was right and Steve knew it.
''Hey Rambo we got something...'' Danny called, already heading towards the door.
Steve and Kono shared a glance, and then followed their respective partners out the door.
Steve took the corners at an even worse speed than usual in pure frustration.
Danny filled him in on the way; a boat carrying 50kilos of cocaine, had somehow gotten past Dock Security and left that morning. Now the drug runners, were holding a family hostage on the boat.
Maddie was just getting back from her morning run, when she heard her cell ringing.
''Sinclair, get to base now. We have a hostage situation 3 miles off the coast.'' Kingston Barked.
''Yes, Sir.'' She ended the call, and raced upstairs to get her things.
After gathering all the items she needed, she ran to her truck and yanked open the door.
Thanking God there was little traffic on the roads, Maddie pressed harder on the gas and headed for the base.
Fifteen minutes later she pulled up in her car space at the base.
Rushing upstairs to her teams offices, she switched into AIRR mode.
''Tommy, what do we have?'' She asked, striding up to her second in command.
Even now eight years later, she still felt a pang that it wasn't Logan in front of her.
Porter had informed her that due to insufficient evidence, they had closed the case after only 6 months of looking. Maddie had all but lost hope of ever finding the bastards who had murdered her old team, but she knew that if they ever did find out who did it, she would kill them. It was as simple as that.
''Three hostages; father, mother and daughter. From what we can see, the drug runners are long gone, but the family are tied to the railings. We have been called to get them out. There is the possibility of injuries, but as of now we are unsure.'' Tommy answered, quickly.
Maddie nodded; they had dealt with worse. She was actually a little confused as to why they had been called to do a job like this so close to shore. Usually the Coast Guards would have handled something like this.
As if reading her mind Tommy said, ''There is also the possibilty of a bomb strapped to the keel. ''
Now that made sense.
Maddie nodded again, and called for her team to leave.
By the time they arrived at the docks, Five-0 was already there. She spotted Steve scaring some poor unfortunate, and Danny waving his arms about telling Steve to try and stay calm.
Chin and Kono were stood a little away from them, so Maddie headed for them after telling her team to stay in the chopper and get ready leave.
''Kono, Chin!'' She called.
They glanced up at the sound of their names, and came towards her.
''Maddie, what are you doing here?'' Kono asked, surprised.
''My team were called in because of the bomb threat.'' Maddie answered.
''Bomb threat?'' Steve repeated joining them.
Maddie looked at him, ''Yes. What you weren't told?''
He shook his head, ''HPD's been giving us the run-around.''
Danny checked his watch, and sighed.
''Danny they'll be other scans...'' Steve said, frustrated.
Maddie stared at him, ''You won't be saying that when you're watching your child on the screen for the first time.''
Steve dropped his eyes at that, ''Back to the case...''
Maddie glared at him, ''My team are ready to leave.''
''We're going with you-''
Maddie shot him down, ''Firstly, even you Steven 'Super SEAL' McGarrett are not trained to do this. Secondly, your part in the case is to find those drug runners. And thirdly, you would most likely get my team killed, because you don't know what you're doing. Which I will not allow. So no, Steve you are not coming, you're staying right here until we get back, then maybe, just maybe you can get statements from the victims.'' She said all of that over her shoulder as she walked away towards the chopper.
They didn't have the time to waste standing around having a pissing contest.
''Besides, you have a child to think of now...''
With that, she gestured for Oliver to take them up and out.
It didn't take them long to get to the boat; Maddie, Tom and Frank, would be getting the hostages out. So once they were clear of the deck, they dropped the ropes.
The parents were out-cold but the teenage daughter, was awake and watching them with a scared expression on her face.
''It's okay, we're here to help,'' Maddie said, assuringly. The girl nodded, cautiously. ''Have your parents being like this for long?''
The girl shook her head, ''One of the men gave them something...''
Maddie nodded, and told Tom, who was working on the parents.
He checked for any broken bones, and then lifted the rope and secured it safely around each of them.
Maddie and Tom shared a look, ''Get them into the chopper now.''
He nodded, and radioed Oliver to pulled them up. Frank grabbed the mother, and Tom took the father.
''Okay, are you hurt in any way?'' Maddie asked the girl.
''No I'm okay, where are you taking my parents?''
Maddie attempted a calming smile, ''My team are taking them to hospital, they're safe...''
Maddie helped the girl to stand, and get tied with the rope.
Once the girl was safely away on the chopper, Maddie went back to grab the medical kit.
Her eye caught sight of the bomb, and her stomach twisted.
The countdown had just less than a minute left.
She took out her radio, ''Oliver, turn her around, head to shore, don't stop. That's an order.''
''Go.'' Her tone was urgent, but commanding.
She watched as the chopper lifted slightly higher, and turned to head to shore.
Glancing back to the bomb, she did the only thing she could think of.
She ran to the starboard side and dived into the ocean below.
Steve watched through the Naval binoculars he had been given, as the chopper headed back to shore.
He breathed a mental sigh of relief. They were heading back and the bomb hadn't even gone off yet.
But no sooner had Steve thought that last thougt, the boat exploded.
Everybody around him gasped.
If the chopper hadn't have left when it did, it would have been knocked out of the air by the blast alone.
They had to wait another several minutes before the team got back.
Five-0 watched as the team went about getting the family off of the machine, and into the awaiting ambulances.
He saw Tommy, Frank and Oliver, who he had met when Maddie's team had taken his SEAL team to South Korea, but he didn't see Maddie.
His feet started forward, before his mind fully processed what was happening.
''Where is she?'' He demanded, harshly.
He felt Danny grab his arm, in another vain attempt to keep him calm.
Tommy hung his head, ''Maddie gave us the order.''
Something every soldier dreads.
Steve himself had given it when he was shot in the leg and shoulder, when Maddie had swooped in and saved his teams asses.
''She was on the boat.'' He stated.
Tommy nodded, slowly in regret.
Steve could distantly hear Kono crying, and Chin telling her everything was going to be alright.
But how could everything be alright?
Maddie was gone.
He let Danny guide him to his truck to sit down. Steve's legs felt like jelly.
He supposed he was going into shock, but he didn't care.
Some part of him felt like saying to Danny, 'Hey look, even SEAL's can feel. I am human after all.'
But he couldn't.
Because Maddie was gone, dead, never coming back, just like his parents.
Anger welled up inside him; he would find those junked-up drug runners, and tear them apart.
Danny was saying something to him, when suddenly his voice stopped. Something in and of itself, was a miracle.
Steve lifted his head to look at Danny, and followed his line of sight to the edge of the dock.
Standing there, dripping wet was Maddie.
Steve forced his legs to carry him forward to her.
Maddie watched him, then slowly started to match his pace.
Finally they met in the middle, and she held on to him for dear life.
Her arms and legs were burning; it had been awhile since she had had to swim 3 miles in one go. She had done it during her training, and in her yearly evaluations, but never for recreation.
Not that swimming away from a bomb, was recreation for anybody.
''I thought you dead.'' Steve whispered, into her ear.
Maddie screwed her eyes shut, and buried her head in Steve's shoulder, ''For a minute there, so did I...''
No one inturrupted their 'moment' but soon Maddie pulled away, and Steve noticed for the first time, the scratches all over her face and neck.
He went with her to the chopper, where her team were all wearing looks of pure shock and relief. Tommy sat her down, and went about cleaning the scratches.
They weren't deep, so she didn't need to go to the hospital, but her Commanding Officer, did give her the rest of the day off to rest.
Maddie argued that she was fine, but he wouldn't listen.
Then another call came in for her team, and they left, going to get her emergency replacement.
Steve let Danny drive this time, so he could keep an eye on Maddie.
She was sat in the back of the Camaro; having arrived in the chopper, her own truck was still at the base.
She said she didn't want to go home, so they ended up at HQ, and Steve led Maddie into his office.
While his team worked on finding any leads on where the drug runners could be, Steve gave Maddie some chocolate and water.
He could see just from looking at her, that she was on the verge of going into shock herself.
''Why?'' He asked, quietly.
Maddie glanced at him, before resting her head back against the couch.
''Just because I didn't have time to get into the chopper, didn't mean my team and the family had to die too. The AIRR's motto is 'So Other's May Live'. I can't afford to think about myself out there. It has to be about the job.'' Maddie replied, sounding completely worn-out.
Steve watched her for a couple of minutes, before closing his eyes against the images of the boat exploding, and the feeling of devastation that Maddie, his Maddie was gone.
His eyes snapped open at that; his Maddie? She would kill him if she knew what he was thinking.
''Steve?'' She sighed, from the couch.
''Yeah?'' He answered, gruffly.
''Congratulations...'' She said, opening her eyes, to look at him.
He looked at the floor; what could he say to that?
'Thanks, but I wish you were the mother.'
Somehow he doubted she would re-act very well.
Besides, they weren't even dating...
It was saturday, which meant surfing with Kono and Grace. Maddie had started going along, as long as she wasn't working, and handing out tips, or helping Grace learn a couple of small moves. Kono had suggested it; she said Maddie needed a distraction from Steve.
Not that Maddie agreed, because really she was fine. So what if Steve was going to be a father?
She knew he would make a fantastic father. Maddie was happy for him.
But even after two months, it still hurt knowing that they were never going to be anything more than friends.
Maddie had figured that if either of them had kids (which had been increasingly unlikely) it would be together.
They had been sleeping together since they were seventeen for heaven's sake!
Maddie shook her head, trying to clear the depressing thoughts.
Kono had also decided that Maddie needed new friends as well; so she had introduced Maddie to Danny's ex-soon to be again-wife Rachel. Maddie and Rachel had hit it off, weirdly enough, and in doing so, Maddie had gotten know Grace as well.
That was how the whole surfing thing had happened; the three women had arranged to have lunch a few weeks ago, and Rachel had brought Grace, who being the curious little girl that she was, had bombarded Maddie with questions about her job. Because apperently, her job was almost as cool as Dophin Trainer Annie's.
Maddie had grinned and nodded in agreement.
From then on, Maddie had gone to the beach with Grace and Kono every saturday.
Maddie had watched as Kono showed Grace the basics, and been impressed that she caught on so quickly. In only the few weeks that Maddie had been going, she had seen the vast improvement.
As Maddie parked her truck in one of spaces nearby, she spotted Grace running towards her.
''Maddie!'' She said, as she reached the truck.
Maddie bent down and gave Grace a quick hug, before standing back up and taking her hand to go to where Kono was waiting.
''Maddie?'' Grace asked.
Maddie glanced down, ''Yeah?''
''Will you help me write my invitations?''
It was Gracie's birthday in a week, and Rachel and Danny had decided that since it was the first birthday they would spending together as a family again, they would throw a special party.
Maddie smiled, ''Sure Gracie.''
Grace skipped off toward Kono as Maddie walked slowly, enjoying the feeling of the sand beneath her toes.
They went on with the lesson as usual; Grace mastered a few small tricks, and they laughed and joked like normal.
Then when they finished, Grace asked if Maddie could take her home, so that they could write the invitations.
Maddie agreed; silently thanking God, that it was her day off, so she didn't have to disappoint the excited child in front of her.
An hour later, they were sat at the kitchen table with all the paper around them, and Gracie's colouring pencils.
Maddie had been assigned the task of writing, because according to Grace her hand writing was like a princesses...
Whatever that meant.
Maddie was happy to see the kid smile, so she obediently wrote out all the invitations to Gracie's school-friends first.
But when it came to writing her Uncle Steve's, Grace pulled on Maddie's arm, and looked up at her with worried eyes.
''What's wrong, Gracie?'' Maddie asked, quickly.
The little girl bit her lip, ''Do you think Uncle Steve would be angry with me, if I didn't invite Catherine?''
Maddie raised her eyebrows, ''Why don't you want to invite Catherine?'' She asked, hoping the answer in her head wasn't the right one.
''Because last week when Danno and I, went over to see Uncle Steve, she shouted at me for playing in the back garden. She said I was making too much noise, and she was trying to sleep. She scared me, and I don't like her...'' Grace trailed off, her eyes filling with tears.
Maddie immediatly put the felt tip pen she was holding down, and pulled Grace in for a hug.
''Gracie, it's your birthday. Which means it's your special day, that means that if you don't want someone there, they aren't invited. Uncle Steve won't be mad or upset with you at all, I promise...'' Maddie soothed her.
Grace nodded and wiped her eyes, ''Okay...''
''Okay.'' Maddie repeated, and picked the pen up to address the card to Steve.
And Steve only.
Steve stood in his bedroom, getting dressed for the party, when he heard Catherine calling him.
He walked out of his own room, and down the hall to hers; she hadn't been very happy about the sleeping arrangements, but Steve had told her that she would be more comfortable in the guest room.
He knocked on the door before pushing it open.
''What do you think?'' Catherine asked, turning around.
Steve stared at her; she was wearing a strapless dress, that showed off her baby bump, and pumps. Her face was covered in make-up and her hair was piled on top of her head.
''You look nice...'' Steve said, not catching on.
Catherine rolled her eyes, ''But it is too much for a kids party?''
Steve frowned in confusion.
She had seen the invitation Danny had handed him a few nights ago after they watched a game and drank a few beers.
Catherine's name had not been on it.
Steve had been glad in a way, becuase it meant that he could talk to Maddie without Catherine glaring holes through the pair of them.
Now it looked like Catherine was choosing to ignore that small fact, and was going anyway.
''No, you look very,'' Steve struggled to find a word that would end this conversation, but came up with nothing so went with the old back-up. ''nice.''
Catherine smiled at him, and walked towards him, putting her arms arond his neck and kissing him passsionately.
Steve kissed her back, not feeling much of anything.
He cared about Catherine; wouldn't have spent so much time with her if her didn't, but he didn't love her.
Once the kiss was over, she shooed him out and shut the door.
Blinking, Steve shook his head and went downstairs to wait.
The party started at 1pm, and Steve pulled his truck in at quarter past.
Catherine had decided to change her make-up at the last minute, so now they were late.
Steve saw Maddie's truck parked not far away, but it was empty. She was already inside.
Catherine waited until Steve came around and opened he door for her, like he usually did.
''Thank you, Steve.'' She said, happily.
He gave her a half smile in response.
The front door was open, and the living room had been decorated with different coloured balloons, and streamers. Steve went in first, looking around for one of his team, or the birthday girl herself.
Instead, he met Maddie's eyes, as she came out of the kitchen.
She smiled at him, then he saw her eyes widen then narrow as she saw Catherine.
They made their way into the house, Steve purposefully standing near Maddie.
Grace came running in looking very happy with herself as she showed Maddie a seashell in her hands.
Maddie crouched down to see it better, and smiled, telling her how pretty it was.
Steve glanced at Catherine, wondering if she would be anything like that when their child came.
She had always said, that she didn't want children, but now after 6 months of getting used to the idea, Catherine was starting to like the prospect.
But still Steve worried, that maybe she would change her mind.
Catherine nudged him none too gently in the arm, ''What's wrong with her?''
Steve looked back to Maddie and Grace; the latter was looking very troubled, but Maddie said something in her ear, making her smile and nod, before racing off to join her friends.
Maddie came closer, ''Hey Steve, Catherine.'' There was barely pause between the names, but Steve noticed.
''Hey, how have you been?'' Steve asked. They hadn't seen much of each other for the last two weeks, both of them busy with work mostly.
Steve was currently in the middle of re-decorating his old bedroom. So that had been taking up a lot of his time.
Maddie nodded, ''I'm good. What about you two?''
Catherine smiled sweetly at her, ''We're fine, very excited...''
Maddie smiled back, as if she didn't notice the malice in her words.
She walked off then, towards Tommy who was standing talking to Chin.
Frowning, Steve wondered why Tommy was here.
''They're dating, how cute.'' Catherine said.
Steve's gut dropped as he realized that she was probably right.
Catherine said she was thirsty, so he went into the kitchen to get some drinks.
Danny was standing in front of the counter, but looked up when Steve entered.
''Nice of you to show up Rambo! We were getting worried.'' Danny joked.
Steve grinned, and reached for a beer.
''Well as long as I don't have to sing Happy Birthday, I'm happy to be here.''
Danny laughed, ''I would pay to see that.''
Steve was about to reply, when Maddie came in holding her top away from herself.
''Maddie, what happened to you?'' Danny asked, amused.
Maddie grinned at him, ''Kids. There's so many of them...''
Steve chuckled, ''We're not going to go out there, and find a kid dangling from a chanderlier, are we?''
''There isn't a chanderlier out there.'' Maddie replied, seriously.
They grinned at each other, ''I'll leave you two alone...'' Danny muttered, walking out.
Maddie and Steve stared at one another for a few seconds before Maddie broke the silence, ''How's everything with the baby?''
Steve watched her face, but he couldn't find anything but honest curiousity.
''The baby is doing fine, we had a scan the other week...'' Steve said, trailing off.
Maddie didn't want to know about that...
''Do you know the sex?'' She asked, smiling slightly.
Steve shook his head, ''We didn't want to know.''
Maddie nodded and came over to stand next to him by the counter.
''And how are you in all of this?'' She asked, gently.
Steve sighed and shrugged, ''Honestly? I don't know. I mean, I haven't really had that much time to think everything through yet, you know?''
Maddie chuckled, humourlessly, ''Not really, no.''
Regret flooded through him, ''Maddie, I'm sorry, I didn't mean-''
''I know. But hey, I get to be one kick-ass auntie.'' She said.
Steve smirked, ''Poor kid...''
Maddie hit him in the arm, ''Shut up.''
The door opened then, Catherine came in and stopped when she saw Maddie.
''I thought you got lost.'' She said to Steve.
Maddie stood up straight, from leaning against the counter.
''I'll see you around, Super SEAL...'' She brushed past Catherine, and disappeared out into the party.
Steve picked up his beer and a plastic cup of orange juice.
''Got the drinks.'' He said, holding them up.
Catherine smiled at him, ''I'll forgive you for taking so long...''
Steve smiled at her, and passed her drink over.
They went back out into the main room, and stood with Chin and Kono while Steve kept an eye on Maddie across the room.
He was beginning to really dislike Tommy.
Just after Danny helped Grace to cut her cake, Maddie and Tommy got a call from their Commander calling them to base.
Maddie went over to tell Rachel and Grace, her face fell, but Maddie promised she would see her later, and she could show Maddie all of her presents.
Grace gave her another hug and smile, then went to finish smacking the crap out of a pinata.
As Maddie and Tommy approached the front door she heard Catherine say to Steve, ''Why does she get to leave, when we have to stay?''
She felt her calm composure snap, and suddenly she whipped back around to face Catherine.
Keeping her voice qitched low, so that she didn't distrupt the party, Maddie glared at Catherine.
''I helped Grace to write those invitations, therefore I know that your name wasn't on one. No one wants you here Catherine, so feel free to leave.'' Her voice sounded completely unlike her own.
But Maddie was too angry to care; this was a little girls birthday party, and this...bitch...was making it about her.
Maddie had tried to stay neutral from Steve's sake, and for his unborn child, but now her feelings just bubbled up inside if her, making her want to hit that smug face into next week, but Maddie would never hit a pregnant woman.
Tommy put a hand on Maddie's arm, restraining her.
''We have to go, Maddie.'' He said, gently.
Catherine hadn't said anything, she just stood there staring at Maddie as if she couldn't quite believe she had spoken in the way that she had.
Steve hadn't said anything either, but he was watching Maddie carefully.
With a disgusted sigh, Maddie shrugged off Tommy's hand, and walked out of the house, down the path to her truck.
Tommy went with her, joining her silently.
As Steve walked into HQ the next morning, he planned what he would say to Maddie in his head.
He had called her last night, after Catherine was asleep and asked her to meet him at his office at lunch time. She had agreed, but now Steve wasn't sure what he had called her for.
The morning passed in relative ease; they only executed one raid on a murderers' house. No one on the team had been hurt, it all had gone smoothly.
For once, as Danny had pointed out.
By the time lunch time arrived, Steve still wasn't sure what to say.
But when he spotted Maddie enter the main office, he knew he was out of time.
He stood up and went to the door to greet her.
''What's in the bag?'' He asked, as she sat down on the couch.
Maddie looked down, ''Lunch, I brought Chinese...''
Steve smiled gratefully, and took the food box she was offering him.
They ate, Maddie doing most of the talking.
She told him about how she had started going surfing with Kono and Grace, and lunch with Rachel.
It wasn't until they finished eating that Maddie broached the subject.
''Look, I'm sorry for yesterday...I shouldn't have snapped at her like I did. I just...it was Gracie's birthday.''
Steve nodded, ''I know. I'm sorry too, I should have said something. But with all the hormones, if I say one wrong thing Catherine starts crying like she's trying to drown us all.''
Maddie couldn't help it; she laughed.
After a few more minutes, she spoke again, ''I am happy for you Steve, you know that right?''
Steve looked at her, her eyes were shining with sincerity, but also a tinge of unease.
''I know...'' He said, nodding.
''I just don't want to see you get hurt,'' She chuckled again. ''Which I know won't happen, because you're Super SEAL. But still...if you need anything, you know where I am.''
Steve touched her arm, and waited until she looked him in the eyes.
Maddie sighed, and slumped against his side, hugging him tight.
Danny knocked urgently on the office door, then breaking them apart.
Steve stood up and went to open it, ''Danny, what the hell man?''
His eyes fell on Catherine who was standing next to the door, holding a bag out to him.
''I brought you dinner...'' Her smiled faltered though, when she saw Maddie approach the door.
''Hey Catherine, look about yesterday-''
''Don't worry about it, you're under pressure from work, I'm sure.'' Catherine said, nicely.
Maddie nodded, but didn't tell her that pressure was part and parcel of the job. She had been doing it since she was 22, and she had never lost her temper like that with anybody else.
She just didn't like Catherine.
But she had promised herself that she would try.
Just then, Kono came up to them, ''Boss, we have something...''
The team left pretty quickly after that, leaving Maddie and Catherine alone in the office.
As Maddie turned to leave, Catherine called her name.
''I know what you're doing.'' She said.
Maddie frowned in confusion, ''Excuse me?''
''You're trying to steal Steve away from me.''
Maddie laughed, ''Are you crazy? Of course I'm not.''
Catherine's eyes narrowed to slits, ''I'm warning you to stay away from him.''
Maddie laughter died, ''You're not kidding...''
''You're not wrong. If you come anywhere near my house-''
''Okay lady, first off, it's not your house. Second, I have known Steve my entire life, so nothing you say is going to keep me away. Thirdly,'' Maddie raised a finger, and pointed it dangerous close to Catherine's face, ''If you ever threaten me again, I won't be so nice.''
With that, she turned on her heel, and left the offices, feeling angry and empty all at once.
'Of all the women in the world, why the hell did Steve have to get that one pregnant?' She thought, bitterly.
Catherine didn't deserve a baby.
And she sure as hell didn't deserve Steve.
Steve and Danny were driving to Steve's when the call came in.
As Steve answered his phone, Danny watched as his partner got paler and paler, and his grip on the steering wheel came dangerously loose.
Suddenly, he punched the gas pedal harder and made a hairpin turn, driving in the opposite direction to his house.
''Steve, what's wrong?'' Danny asked at once.
They had been laughing before the call come in, now Steve looked like his usual bad-ass ninja SEAL self, except 100 times worse.
Steve ignored him, staring straight ahead, although Danny expected that he wasn't actually watching for other cars, or even people.
''McGarrett, what the hell is wro-''
''It was the hospital,'' Danny stilled. ''Catherine's in labour...''
They arrived at the hospital in record time; but even Danny didn't mention the several traffic laws that was broken on the way.
Steve hadn't said another word after telling Danny what was happening; Danny was pretty sure Steve had lost the ability to speak for the moment.
Parking the car in the first spot he saw, Steve launched himself out of the car, and ran for the hospital doors. Danny followed close behind, muttering under his breath about 'having stupidly long legs...'
Steve again ignored him, approached the front desk and asked where maternity was. The receptionist pointed them in the right direction, and Steve barely gave her time to finish before hurrying off.
Once they were in the elevator, Steve hit the button with a hell of a lot more force than was strictly necessary.
Finally the doors slid open, and Steve demanded to know where Catherine was.
''Lieutenant Rollins is in room 306, the doctor is in there with her now...are you the father?'' The nurse asked.
Steve nodded tersly, and followed the nurse to the room down the corridor.
Turning around once he called to Danny, ''Call Maddie...''
''Put the gun down, or she is dead.'' Warned the gun-man who was currently holding a gun to Maddie's head.
Frank hesitated slightly, then placed his weapon on the ground.
Maddie caught his eye and winked quickly; letting him know to stick with the plan.
Her team was wearing the usual protective gear, but Maddie had been hit with a couple of bullets, and Tom had taken her kevlar vest off to check for any broken ribs.
Then the psychopath with the gun had jumped out at them, and grabbed Maddie.
Frank didn't show any sign of aknowledgement, but Maddie knew he understood.
Tom and Oliver were stood slightly behind Frank, and were lowering their weapons too.
Normally it would have been easy to get out of this kind of situation, with there being three of them, against one, but Maddie wasn't wearing any protection. If she was hit, she was dead.
But the gun-man was thick; because she wasn't wearing exactly what the rest of her team was, he thought that she was a civillian.
How wrong he was...
Waiting for the right moment, Maddie wriggled slightly in his hold, Frank saw, and tensed. They all carried spare weapons, so putting one gun down wasn't that bad.
The gun-mans grip on Maddie's throat relaxed slightly, allowing Maddie the leverage to pull her arm up, and elbow him in the face.
He staggered back with a howl of pain, but Maddie kicked him in the back of the knee, taking him down.
He brought the gun up again, and pointed it directly at Maddie.
Before she had the chance to knocked it out of his hand, he fired, hitting Maddie in the side.
She fell back, and heard the tell tale sound of Frank taking the shot.
The gun-man finally lay motionless on the ground a few feet from where Maddie lay, holding her wound.
''Maddie!'' Tom said, crouching next to her, and pulling out his medical kit.
''I'm fine, just bounced off a rib...'' Maddie said, painfully.
Tommy didn't look convinced but didn't argue, just called for Oliver to get the chopper ready.
Frank helped Tom get her back to the chopper and strapped in, before calling for back-up for the body.
They took off, and headed for the base.
A couple of minute later Maddie's phone started ringing; she pulled it out of her pocket, groaning when it upset the guaze Tom had placed on her side.
''Sinclair.'' She answered, tightly.
''Maddie? It's Danny. Are you okay?'' He sounded worried, but distracted.
''I'm fine, just a little bullet. What's wrong on your end?'' Maddie replied with a sinking feeling.
Danny wouldn't have called if everything was fine.
''Steve asked me to call you...Catherine's in labour. He wanted you to know.''
Maddie closed her eyes, and banged her head back against the side of the chopper.
''I'll be there as soon as I can.'' She hung up, and put her phone away, avoiding Tom's eyes.
''You need a hospital.'' He said.
Maddie finally looked up and met his eyes, ''Good. Because that's exactly where I'm going.''
Steve stood next to the bed, as Catherine clutched at his hand, and almost broke his fingers.
The doctor was trying to keep her calm but it wasn't working, she just kept telling him to shut up, and to get it out of her.
Steve didn't like the way she kept calling his baby 'it'. But he couldn't exactly say anything right now...
The nurse who was wiping Catherine's forehead asked, ''Have you chosen any names yet?''
Catherine ignored her, so Steve answered instead.
''Not yet. We said we would wait and see whether we had a boy or a girl...''
The nurse nodded and smiled at him, before wiping Catherine's face again.
Catherine cried out again, as the doctor told her to push.
Steve actually felt his bones grate together as Catherine squeezed his hand.
He knew he should probably try to comfort her in some way, but he wasn't sure how. Besides the nurse was trying to do that, and Catherine just ignored her.
Watching the doctor, Steve felt his excitement rise; it was really happening, he was going to be a father.
He was excited and happy, but also more terrified than he had been in his entire life.
Not that he would ever say that out loud.
Danny would take the piss something shocking if he found out.
Although, Danny would understand, he was a father.
''What are you thinking?'' Catherine asked, panting.
Steve glanced at her, ''Wondering whether it's a boy or girl...''
Catherine glared at him, ''Well does it matter? It can't be anything else.''
Grinding his teeth together, he tried to stay calm, ''I know that...''
Another wail escaped her lips, as Noelani told her to push again, only this time, at the end of it, their was another cry that filled the room.
Steve's heart shot into his mouth; the baby was here.
Noelani held her arms up and showed them the new born child quickly, before hurrying over to the table to do the necessary things.
From what Steve had seen in the too brief second, he had seen perfection.
Catherine was laying still now, with her head back against the pillows. Her hand dropped Steve's, and moved to her face.
But Steve didn't really care, his focus was on the huddle of people surrounding his child.
He bit his tongue against the impending questions, letting them do their jobs, but inside he was panicking.
What was taking so long?
Finally after what felt like a lifetime, Noelani turned around, with a pink bundle in her arms and approached the bed.
Catherine didn't look up, so Noelani went to Steve.
''Congratulations Commander, you have a baby girl...''
She showed him how to postion his arms just right, and gently handing her over.
His gaze latched on to her face; her tiny nose, and pink cheeks. The tuft of dark hair on her head.
She was completely and utterly perfect.
Steve had never seen anything so beautiful in his life.
''Aloha, Hiwahiwa Kaikamahine...'' Steve breathed, in awe.
''Steve?'' Catherine said, sitting up.
He turned and walked nearer again.
He was reluctant to let her go, but Catherine was her mother, so he gently laid her in Catherine arms and said he was going to tell Danny. She nodded and gazed at the baby in her arms.
Steve headed for the door, and looked back over his shoulder.
Catherine was holding the baby away from her slightly, and was frowning a little. Steve put it down to exhaustion and left.
He spotted Danny sat in the chair nearest to him, then Maddie stood up, followed by the Chin and Kono.
Maddie walked towards him, with a smile on her face.
Steve know he was smiling too, his face was actually starting to hurt, but he couldn't stop. Didn't want to stop.
He was a daddy.
Oliver took them straight to Queens. The hospital had a helipad for exactly this reason, so Maddie allowed Tom to lead her to the nearest doctor to be stitched up.
The bullet had infact hit a rib; it hadn't broken, but it had a nasty crack now. So she didn't need surgery to remove the bullet, they just patched her up and put on a clean bandage.
Maddie stayed around long enough to please Tom and save an arguement, then hurried up to maternity, and found the rest of Five-0 sat in the chairs.
''Danny,'' He stood up, and they hugged. Maddie tried not to wince when her stitches pulled. ''Where is he?''
''Down the hall, with Catherine. The baby is okay for now, but they said something about maybe having to do an emergency C-Section...'' He replied, sitting down.
Maddie sat next to him and sighed, ''How long have you been here?''
It had been nearly two hours since the phone call on the chopper, but Maddie wasn't sure how long the labour had been going on.
''We arrived just before I called you. Steve got a call from the hospital, telling him to come quickly, and as he went with the doctor he asked me to call you. Then I called Chin and Kono.''
Maddie nodded; she knew labour could go on for days sometimes, so the emergency C-Section made sense, especially with the baby being premature.
Maddie filled them in on what had happened to her; Danny said that she was the female version of Steve. Chin gave her the sympathy, and Kono demanded to know whether or not they had caught the guy who had shot her. When Maddie assured her that he was very much dead, she nodded and let it go.
It was another hour and a half before Steve came out of the room, and headed towards them.
His eyes landed on Maddie, and he smiled.
She pushed herself up, ignoring the now burning pain in her side, and walked towards him.
''Well?'' Danny asked impatiently from behind her.
Steve's smile widened to an impossible size, ''I have a daughter...''
Maddie squealed slightly, and threw her arms around his neck.
''Congratulations, Super SEAL!'' She whispered into his ear.
He laughed, ''I still can't believe it...''
Maddie let him go, and watched as the partners exchanged a 'Manly' hug, complete with back pounding slaps.
Shaking her head, she grinned. Kono and Chin were watching them too, but they didn't say anything.
Once Danny stepped away, Chin and Steve shook hands, and Kono hugged him like there was no tomorrow.
Maddie had to bite her lip to keep from crying; she was proud of Steve, but it knowing that his child was in the room just a few doors away, suddenly made this all real.
She and Steve would never be together.
Steve went back to into the room after talking to his team and Maddie, to find Doctor Noelani telling Catherine that 'Baby McGarrett' had to go to the antenatal unit, just to be safe. She was three weeks premature, but a lot could go wrong if they didn't keep an eye on her.
Steve listened and nodded along with what the doctor was saying.
Catherine kept shooting him dirty looks, but he didn't look at her.
''You can both visit her anytime you like, but for now Catherine I would insist you stay in bed until you heal. I will get your daughter settled and then come back and check on you.''
Steve glanced at Catherine then, ''I'll be back.'' He said, before following the doctor out of the door.
''How is she?'' He immediatly asked.
Noelani glanced at the door, making sure it was shut.
''She's very weak at the moment. But so far she appears to be healthy, we will run some tests, and we will know more soon. You can come to the antenatal unit if you like...?''
Steve nodded, and went to tell his team and Maddie.
After they arrived at the unit, Noelani took the baby and got her settled into a hospital crib, before letting Steve come in.
She left them alone for a minute and went to get everything set up with the nurses.
''Hey there,'' Steve whispered to his baby girl. Her little leg kicked out randomly, making Steve chuckle. ''Danny's going to have a field day with you if he sees that...he'll probably call you 'Mini Ninja' or something...''
He wanted nothing more than to hold her again, but he was scared of breaking her. She was so small.
Smaller than he thought she would be. Steve wasn't altogether sure, how something so small could make him feel all warm inside just by looking at her.
He was a SEAL, trained to keep all emotions hidden, but this tiny little human being in front of him, made him want to shout at the top of his lungs, that she was his.
He was her father.
Because Baby McGarrett couldn't leave the antenatal unit, and wasn't really allowed to be picked up until the test results came back, Catherine couldn't breast feed her. So the nurses went to ask her to express the milk, so they could feed her that way.
The birth had been just under four hours ago so the doctor was only just able to check the baby over completely. After declaring her healthy, she said she needed to eat, so the nurse went to see Catherine.
After about twenty minutes, the nurse came back in looking worried.
''Doctor, may I speak with you outside?'' She asked.
They went out into the corridor, and Steve started to get a very bad feeling.
Finally Noelani came back in, ''Commander, we have a problem. Lieutenant Rollins isn't in her room. The Midwife on duty tonight gave her the routine check-up and left her for the night, but the security camaras show her leaving the ward.''
Steve stared at her for a moment then stood and walked out, already pulled his phone out.
He dialled Catherine's phone, but it went straight to voicemail.
''I'll go look for her.'' He told the doctor.
He went back into say goodbye to the baby, then left again and headed outside to his truck.
He would try home first, then if she wasn't there, he would call HPD and get them to track her phone.
The roads were quite; it was after 1am. The only reason he had been allowed to stay on the ward so long, was because they all knew who he was.
Maddie and his team had left after they moved to the antenatal ward, promising to come back tomorrow.
When he got home, he jumped out of the cab of his truck and unlocked his front door.
Making his way upstairs, he saw that Catherine's room was mostly empty. Her clothes were gone, the vanity in the corner was clear, all traces of her were gone. Even the bed was stripped.
He hurried to the nursary, but everything was un-touched in there. He lowered himself into the rocking chair slowly.
She had left. She was gone. Catherine had walked out on her own daughter. On him. Someone she proclaimed to love.
Wiping a hand down his face, Steve took a deep breath and tried to plan his next move.
Nothing came to him though; even he wasn't trained for this.
How was he going to be able to do this alone? He couldn't raise a child on his own.
He resisted the urge to break something, and instead pulled out his phone again.
Dialling the number quickly, he waited for it to go through.
''Sinclair...'' A sleepy voice answered.
Steve's throat felt tight in relief; if she hadn't have answered...
''Maddie,'' He took another calming breath, and swallowed the lump in his throat. ''Help...''
*Aloha, Hiwahiwa Kaikamahine = Hello, Beloved Daughter
Steve was still sat in the rocking chair when he heard the front door open, and Maddie's voice calling his name.
''Up here...!'' He called to her.
Maddie came into the nursery a few moments later, with a weird look on her face; it looked like part concern, part anger, with a bit of relief mixed in.
Steve didn't even try to figure it all out right then, there were more important things to worry about.
''Steve...?'' She said uncertainly, coming closer.
Steve hadn't had chance to explain what had happened; after hearing his voice on the phone, Maddie had immediately jumped out of bed and out the front door, she barely had time to grab a jacket to throw over her bed clothes.
''She's gone,'' Maddie froze, a few steps away from him. ''Catherine, she left the hospital. I don't know where she is...''
She was quiet for a heartbeat, then, ''What about the baby?''
Steve braced his elbows on his knees and looked up at Maddie.
''She's okay, she's at the hospital. But...''
Maddie frowned, ''But?''
He glared at the wall, ''What the hell do I do now?''
Maddie sighed and crouched down beside the chair, ''I don't know Steve...but we will figure it out.'' She vowed.
He glanced at her, ''We?''
Maddie smiled at him, ''Just because I didn't like Catherine, doesn't mean I don't care about your daughter Steve. She's a part of you...how could I not?''
He stared at her for a few moments, silently thinking about what it would be like right now if Maddie was his childs mother.
He knew it would be easier, but then again, parenthood wasn't meant to be easy.
Suddenly, Maddie snorted, ''You know what I can't believe? I can't believe she threw all of this away like it means nothing.''
She stood up and started pacing the room.
''How could she leave you?! Who the hell leaves a newborn baby, and just disappears?!''
Standing up, Steve closed the space between them, and hugged her close.
Her words soon dried up, and she hugged him back, leaning her head against his shoulder.
''Thank you.'' Steve muttered, softly.
Maddie chuckled humourlessly, ''Anytime, Super SEAL...''
Maddie went into the kitchen to get drinks, as Steve called the hospital to check on the baby, and to update them on the whole Catherine situation.
Maddie had never been so angry in her life; Catherine had done nothing for almost 5 months, but tell everybody how much she was looking forward to being a mother, and being with Steve.
Now she had left them both. Left Steve to raise their child alone.
From the things Catherine had said to Maddie over the months; especially the threat about leaving Steve alone. Maddie knew that Catherine wanted rid of Maddie, and Steve for herself. Or at least she had.
But now that plan had backfired, because Maddie would never just abandon Steve. Which by default meant helping out with the baby.
Not that Maddie minded that small fact; she had always wanted children, but had long since accepted that she would probably never get the chance. Now at least she could be there for Steve's.
Carrying the beers out to the lanai, she saw that Steve was sat by the water, watching the moon reflect in the ocean.
She sat in the chair next to him, and handed him one of the bottles.
''Have the doctors said when you can bring her home yet?'' Maddie asked, a few minutes later.
Steve sipped from the bottle before answering, ''Noelani said that if she maintains the level of health she has at the moment, she could be home by next week...''
Maddie nodded, ''Well then you should go and try to get some sleep,...you're going to need it.''
Before Steve went into his room, he told Maddie that she was welcome to stay over, instead of driving home at such a late/early hour.
Maddie agreed and waited until he was shut away in his room, before going back downstairs to make up a bed on the couch.
She just couldn't bring herself to sleep in that bed, knowing what that bitch had done to Steve.
Maddie hoped, selfishly, that Catherine never came back. But also in a way wanted her to come back so she could punch her in the face.
But laying there, staring at the ceiling, Maddie couldn't help but wonder what life would be like right now if she was the mother of the little girl.
Turning onto her side, trying to block out the painful thoughts, Maddie sighed.
She would give anything to be a mother, and that idiot had thrown her chance away.
Later that day, Steve was back at the hospital, and was waiting on a phone call from Danny about tracking Catherine.
So far, they hadn't been able to find anything, but Steve wouldn't give up. He had his team working on tracking her phone signal, and talking to her Naval Commander, but everything just led to a dead end.
Even the APB, HPD had set up was a bust.
That morning over breakfast, Maddie had suggested that maybe Catherine would turn up in a couple of days, after taking some time to think things through.
Steve wasn't so sure; only he and the nurses had seen what Catherine had been like when she had held the baby for the first time.
Maddie on the other hand, had been perfect with her so far.
''The nurses said to put your arms like this...'' Steve said, showing Maddie.
She copied his movements, and rolled her eyes.
''I have held a baby before you know...'' She said, lightly.
Steve watched Maddie's face as he handed his daughter over.
Her eyes widened as she got her first good look at her small face. Maddie smiled as she stuck her tongue out at her.
''You really need to come up with a name...'' Maddie said, softly still staring at the baby in her arms.
''I was thinking last night about it...'' Steve replied, smiling.
''And?'' Maddie pressed.
''What do you think of Kaia?'' He asked.
Maddie looked back to the baby, and smiled.
''It means The Sea...'' He added.
''It's perfect.'' Maddie assured him, softly.
''Kaia it is then.''
''Kaia McGarrett. It suits her...''
'Lucky kid...' Maddie silently added.
It took Steve until the afternoon to notice Maddie wincing every time she moved.
''Maddie?'' He asked, as he saw her grimace.
''Yeah?'' She mumbled innocently.
''Don't 'yeah' me, what's going on?'' Steve said, frowning at her.
Maddie sighed, ''I was shot the other day. No big deal.''
Steve didn't know whether to laugh at her choice of words, or shout at her for not telling him.
He went with the latter.
''What the hell?!''
Maddie ssh'ed him, and pulled him outside into the corridor.
''I'm fine, it bounced off a rib. Few stitches...tiny scar.'' She shrugged, nonchalantly.
Steve glared at her, ''Why didn't you tell me? You don't think I've had enough of being kept in the dark?!'' Frustration was clear in his voice.
Maddie looked at the white floor tiles, ''Well you've had a lot going on lately...and Kaia was being born...it didn't seem that important compared to that.''
Steve's glare softened, ''Maddie...''
She glanced up at him, ''What?''
Shaking his head, he leant down and brushed his lips against hers.
''What am I going to do with you...?'' He muttered, smiling.
Maddie grinned mischeviously, ''Well I have a few ideas....''
The next morning as Steve walked into the ward, Doctor Noelani pulled him aside.
''I have some good news, Commander,'' She said smiling at him.
Steve raised his eyebrows, and gestured for her to continue.
''Kaia is perfectly healthy considering she was premature. I see no reason to keep her here any longer. You can take her home as soon as your ready, but bring her back if anything changes.'' She finished sternly.
Steve nodded, a smile creeping on to his face. As the Doctor walked away, Steve pulled out his phone.
Maddie answered on the second ring.
''Is Kaia okay?'' She said immediately.
Shaking his head, Steve filled her in on what the doctor had told him.
An hour later and Maddie was standing on the diaper aisle at the local store.
''And why didn't you do this before she was born?'' She said into the phone.
After their first called ended, Maddie had gotten ready and headed straight over to Steve's to decided what they needed.
From there she had come to the store, and had been standing staring at the diapers for the last ten minutes trying to figure out which ones were right.
''I was going to do it this weekend, but Kaia decided she wanted to meet us...'' Steve answered, sarcastically.
Maddie rolled her eyes, ''Never mind, I'll just ask someone with a brain. I'll meet you back at the house...'' She hung up and pocketed her phone.
Sighing, Maddie asked the nearest store worker which was best.
''Okay I have diapers, wipes, powder and bottles! If we need anything else, you're going!'' Maddie called as she entered the front door.
Steve's laugh came through from the kitchen, ''I can't think of anything.''
Maddie went through, and dropped the bags on the counter.
''When are you picking her up?'' She asked, stretching her back out.
''Five.'' Steve said, grinning.
Maddie nodded, ''Is there anything else that needs doing?''
Steve nodded and his face grew serious, ''There is one thing.''
Frowning, Maddie stepped nearer to him, ''What is it?''
Steve leaned down and kissed her again, sweet and slow.
''What was that for?'' Maddie asked afterwards.
Steve smiled mischeviously, ''The diapers...''
''We're home!'' Steve stage-whispered, as he came into the nursery.
Maddie jumped up from her place by the half-built stroller.
''Kaia!'' She gushed, rushing over.
Kaia was asleep in the carry cot, with a light purple fleece cover over her body.
Maddie's chest felt all warm and tingly, and the look on Steve's face let her know that Steve knew it.
Steve gently picked Kaia up and put her into her crib.
''I can't believe she's here.'' He whispered to himself.
Leaning her head against his shoulder, Maddie smiled.
''Don't worry, you have eighteen years to get used to it...''
(Now I've just read through the chapters, to get back into the story, and I realized that Rachel was four mouths pregnant, about six mouths ago...so she has had the baby, and HE is doing well. I have written a one-shot about the birth, sorry for the mix up!
The first night, Steve and Maddie got about an hour of sleep, before Kaia's cries woke them up.
They both jumped out of bed, and ran down the hall, almost tripping over each other in their haste.
The nursery door was open, so they could hear her clearly. So with that and the baby monitor by the bed, her cries had nearly blasted their heads off.
Steve reached her first, and started checking her over for signs of any of the problems the doctor had pointed out.
Maddie hovered by the doorway, watching Steve handle Daddy Duty.
She had to admit, he was a natural at it. She had never seen him be so gentle with anybody other than Kaia.
He soon got her settled again, but they were both on edge for the rest of the night, waiting for her to make the slightest noise.
As they sat on Steve's bed, listening, they talked more about what Steve would do now.
''You know I'm here for both of you.'' Maddie said, seriously. She knew it was a big commitment, to make a promise like that, but she didn't care.
Steve nodded warily, ''You shouldn't have to be though. She should be here.''
Maddie felt a jab in her chest at his words. Pushing it down, she shook her head.
''Have you thought what you're going to do about work?'' She asked, hesitantly.
''Hand the team over to Danny? I have no idea. I can't leave her, so working is out of the question.''
Maddie nodded distractedly; all Steve knew was work. The team was his Ohana.
''What if she comes back?'' She asked, a little while later. She wasn't all together sure whether she wanted to know the answer, but the words flowed from her mouth before she could stop them.
Steve twisted the sheet in his fist, and tried to stop the anger pounding through his veins.
''Even if she comes back, she is never stepping foot in this house again.''
Maddie nodded again, and muttered under her breath, ''She wouldn't even get near the house if I had anything to do with it...''
Steve felt a smile grace his lips, as he leaned over to kiss the woman next to him.
Of course, it was only right that the baby down the hall would start crying, just before their lips touched.
Maddie pushed Steve away, giggling. ''I'll wait here...''
As Maddie entered the base, later that morning, she sat on one of the benches in the locker room, and put her head in her hands.
It didn't take long before Tommy came looking for her.
He saw her sitting there, and took a seat beside her.
''What is it?'' He asked, softly.
Maddie sighed, ''He's a dad.''
Tommy nodded; he knew who she was taking about. He had met him at the little girls party, with Maddie. He also knew that they were close, but he had to admit, he didn't see why she was upset.
''Isn't that a good thing?'' He asked, cautiously.
She uncovered her face, and looked at him. ''Yes, it's a good thing. It's a great thing! I'm happy for him, really I am...''
''But?'' Tommy pressed.
He was surprised to see a tear make it's way down her cheek; Maddie rarely cried.
Maddie felt the words stick in her throat, she knew she wouldn't be able to get past this until she said them, but she still felt like she was letting the new born down.
''But she's not mine...'' She whispered, tearfully.
Maddie and Tommy had been close friends, for a long time, but he knew there were things he didn't know about her, simply because she didn't talk about them.
Having children was one of those things.
Tommy out an arm around her shoulders, and squeezed lightly.
''How do you feel when you hold her?'' He asked, a few minutes later.
Maddie glowered at him, through her tears, ''Like I would kill anyone who tried to hurt her.''
Tommy laughed, ''Then that's all she needs.''
She knew Steve needed help, and she knew that no matter happened she would be there for Kaia.
Maddie hugged Tommy, ''Any ideas on what to do about a certain SEAL...?''
It was late when Maddie and the team arrived back at the base, after being called away on a mission in the mountains, and the first thing she did was call Steve.
''McGarrett.'' He answered, distractedly. She heard him curse as he dropped something.
''Is Kaia okay?'' She asked, immediately.
He grunted slightly, ''Yeah, she's asleep. What about you?''
Relief flooded through Maddie like a drug, ''I'm good,'' She knew she should ask about the arrangments for the night, but suddenly she felt awkward. ''Um...''
''Are you heading back, yet?'' Steve asked, a slight panicked sound in his voice.
Maddie smiled, as she climbed into her truck. ''Yeah, I'm coming.''
When she walked through the front door, she noticed that the living room was in disarray, something Steve hated.
She hurried up the steps to the nursery and found him fast asleep in the rocking chair by the crib.
Smiling, she looked over at Kaia, who was sleeping peacefully, with her arms moving every so often.
Maddie couldn't deny it anymore; she had fallen in love with the idea of being a mother type figure to Kaia, and it would kill her if the bitch came back, and claimed the child.
Steve had been deathly serious, she knew, when he said he wouldn't allow her in the house. But Catherine was Kaia's biological mother, and had certain rights. Unfortunately.
But still. Maddie was in it for the long haul, and nothing or no-one was going to change her mind.
She turned around, and shook Steve gently.
He was instantly alert, but Maddie could see the exhaustion in his face.
''Kaia?'' He muttered, attempting to stand up. Maddie pushed him back down, and raised a finger to her lips.
''She's fine. Come on...'' She whispered, taking his hand and pulling him to the door.
Steve took one more look at Kaia, then let Maddie guide him into his bedroom.
''It's a training day for the troops tomorrow, so I don't have to be in until the afternoon. I'll take the night shift tonight, you get some sleep.'' Maddie told him, as he laid on the bed.
Steve nodded, already half asleep, and grabbed her around the waist, as she tried to head to the door.
He pulled her into his side, and held her tightly. Maddie smiled against his shoulder; another thing she couldn't deny any longer?
She was without an inch of a doubt, in love with Steven J McGarrett.
Maddie true to her word, made several trips to the nursery, to feed and change Kaia, while Steve slept heavily.
Being in the SEAL's meant that he could get up and go at a moments notice, but he had no idea how draining being a parent was. He hadn't slept that heavily since he was a teenager.
When he finally awoke the next morning, he cleaned himself up and took a shower, before heading to the nusery.
The door was open, and through it he saw Maddie holding Kaia, and rocking her slightly.
''...and when you grow up, your daddy will take you to all the special places he went to when he was young. 'Cause he's old now...'' She laughed, gently. ''But you two are going to have so much fun.''
Steve smiled as Kaia grasped Maddie's finger tightly, making Maddie laugh again.
But he couldn't understand why Maddie only said, 'you two', where was she going?
Kaia sneezed, and Steve leapt forward, worried.
Maddie glanced at him, and grinned at the baby in her arms. ''Daddy's here.'' She passed her over, gently.
Steve took Kaia, and copied Maddie's rocking motion. Kaia took hold of his finger, just like she did with Maddie.
He was quite surprised by her grip.
A flash of pride went through him; she was a true McGarrett.
Maddie was at the store picking up groceries, when her forgotton cell phone started ringing loudly.
Steve who had been trying to relax a little, jumped up and searched frantically for it. Kaia had only just got off, if she woke up now, he didn't what he would do.
Finally he found it, sticking out from under his bed.
''Hello?'' He answered, without thinking.
''Steve?'' Tommy said.
He frowned, and tightened his grip on the phone. ''Maddie isn't here right now.'' He growled.
A sigh then, ''Okay, never mind.'' Then he hung up. Just like that.
Steve threw the cell phone onto the bed and sat down on the edge.
He couldn't understand why he was so angry. Well, no, that was a lie. He did know, but he knew it was pointless.
When Maddie finally made it home, Steve was in the kitchen getting one of the last beers out of the fridge.
She walked into the kitchen, and placed the bags on the counter.
''Hey,'' She said, unloading them.
Steve made an uncommital noise, at the back of his throat, making Maddie look at him strangely.
''Everything okay?'' She asked.
''Fine.'' He replied, shortly.
Maddie frowned; what the hell was his problem?
''Okay...what have I done? Have I forgotten something? Said something?'' She asked, dropping the bread on the counter.
He looked at her hard, ''You left your cell upstairs.''
Maddie instictively patted the pockets of her jeans; no phone.
''Wow,'' She said, lightly. ''The first time in...I don't even know how long.''
If she expected Steve to laugh, she was wrong.
''Did anyone call?'' She tried.
''Tommy.'' He said, almost growling. That was weird; she and Tommy usually said everything they needed to at work, so they rarely called each other, unless there was some kind of emergency. But she also knew that Steve would have told her that immediately, so it wasn't that either.
''What are you jealous?'' She said with a laugh.
Her laughter faded though, as she caught the What if I am? look on his face.
Her eyebrows rose in surprise, ''You are?''
Steve pinched the bridge of his nose, with his spare hand.
''What do you see in him?'' He asked, almost involuntarily.
Maddie shook her head, ''Who, Tommy?''
''Yes, Tommy!'' Steve nearly yelled, before remembering the sleeping infant upstairs.
Maddie stared at him, in confusion.
When had she given him the impression that she was interested in Tommy?
Hadn't she slept in the same bed as him for the last two nights?
Did he really think she would do that, if she was with another guy?
Did he really think so little of her?
She felt her anger level rising. How dare he?
''You think me and Tommy are-''
Steve shook his head, ''It doesn't matter what I think!''
She honestly couldn't believe what she was hearing!
''Forget it.'' He said, and left the kitchen.
Maddie followed him, ''Steven McGarrett you get your butt back here! Don't you dare walk away from me!''
''What like you did when we were kids?!'' He shot back, before looking slightly guilty.
Maddie's jaw hung loose, as her mouth dropped open.
''You bastard!'' She breathed. From the expression on his face, Maddie knew he regretted saying what he did, but still, his words stung. She shook her head. ''You know what? If that's the way feel, I'll just go.''
She made her way towards the front door, before turning back once to say the words that were burning a hole in her tongue.
''And just so you know...Tommy wouldn't be interested in me if I was the last woman on planet Earth!''
With that, she open the front door, stepped out, and shut it behind her with a resounding click.
Steve stood dumbstruck, staring at the wooden door, as Maddie's words rang in his head.
'He wouldn't be interested in me if I was the last woman on planet Earth...'
Did that mean...?
'Of course it does!' Steve's mind yelled at him.
He was launching himself at the door, before his thoughts even caught up with him.
Maddie was just pulling out of the driveway, and even from the front door, Steve could see she was crying.
Guilt gnawed at him; he had done that.
He wanted to run to the truck after her, but that would put him out of hearing range of Kaia.
She looked up once, and as her eyes met his, his shoulders slumped. The look in her eyes was one of a stranger.
There was nothing he could do right now, but tomorrow he would put it right.
Steve didn't sleep a wink that night, so when Kaia did wake up, he was there in seconds.
All he could think about was Maddie, and the fact that he could have ruined everything with just a few words.
He hadn't meant to hurt her, he had been angry, and had said the wrong thing, but hell if he knew the difference it made.
The only reason he hadn't told her how he felt about her, was because he thought she was with Tommy. Only now he knew better, so...if she would give him five minutes to talk, he would tell her.
If he could get the words out.
Hell, he'd been trying to find the words since Maddie's mother had died, and their friendship became something else.
Although, at first he hadn't been aware of what he was feeling because, he hadn't known the difference between love and lust.
But now...now he knew.
It wasn't until Maddie arrived home, that she realized that she had left a shopping bag in her truck.
She would drop it off, on her way into work, in the morning.
It wasn't Kaia's fault her father was an idiot.
Maybe this was for the best; she and Steve obviously were never going to go anywhere, so this could be like a clean break.
She might actually get over him this time.
Maddie tried to keep her face expressionless, as she walked up Steve's garden path.
Instead of just walking in like she usually would, she knocked and waited.
Less a minute later, a tired looking McGarrett answered the door.
His eyes widened slightly, ''Maddie-''
''I forgot to bring this in yesterday,'' She inturrupted, holding the bag out.
Steve took it, and tried again, ''About yesterday-''
Maddie sighed, ''I can't do this now. I have to get to the base...''
Nodding Steve tried for a smile, ''Later?''
Part of Maddie; the Still-Mad-At-McGarrett part, was screaming at her to refuse. But the other; Still-In-Love-With-McGarrett part, was screaming at her to accept.
''Yeah, I'll stop by after work.'' She said, after a long pause.
Steve looked relieved, ''Good.''
''Good.'' Maddie repeated, before turning away and heading to her truck.
As soon as Maddie laid eyes on Tommy that morning, she nodded her head towards the locker room.
''I'm sorry Maddie...'' He said.
Maddie frowned, ''It wasn't your fault. I shouldn't have left my phone...''
Tommy grimaced, ''So it was bad then?''
''It could have been worse, I suppose...it's not like we were dating.'' Maddie sighed. ''We're talking after work...'' She added.
''Well make sure you tell him it straight.'' Tommy smiled.
Maddie bit her lip, ''Tommy?''
He looked at her, and nodded.
''I thought so. Don't worry about it. You trust him, which means so do I.'' He said, softly.
''I am really sorry. It just kinda slipped out.'' Maddie replied, shaking her head.
''Don't worry about it, really.'' They traded small smiles.
''The Boss, wants us all in the main room.'' Frank said, walking into the locker room.
''A job?'' Maddie inquired, her training kicking in.
Frank shrugged, ''He wouldn't say.''
Maddie and Tommy followed Frank into the main room, both silently wondering what it could all be about.
Commander Livingston stood behind his desk, with one of the most serious expressions on his face, that Maddie immediately stepped forward.
''Sir? You wanted to see my team?'' She said.
''Sinclair, I don't have time to be plesant, so I will get straight to the point,'' He replied, gravely.
''A very important Government Official's daughter was reported missing two days ago. Her father has issued a statement that whoever finds her, will be given a reward of a very substantial amount of money. Now we have reason to believe that she is somwhere on the North side of the mountains. We need to find her, before someone...less qualified does.'' He said, briskly.
''Understand?'' He added.
''Yes Sir. My team can be ready to leave in less than three minutes.'' She replied, quickly.
Kingston nodded, ''Excellent. Get it done, Sinclair.''
Maddie saluted, followed by her team.
Once outside of hearing range of The Boss, Frank turned to Maddie, ''How's the wound?''
Maddie subconsciously put her hand, to her side.
''The infirmary cleared me for duty yesterday morning. Healing nicely.''
Frank nodded, ''Let me know if anything changes.''
Danny ended the phone call with the Governor and went to tell Chin and Kono the details.
''Okay, looks like a missing person case. The Governor said that a rescue team has been dispatched to the mountains. We are to track any and all suspects, without arousing any suspision.'' He said, repeating the Governer's words.
Chin nodded and got to work at tracing the victims last know whereabouts.
Kono brought up phone records, and filtered through them looking for anything out of place.
Chin looked up, ''Danny, you said a rescue team is on route?''
Danny nodded, ''Yeah, why?''
''Maddie's team?'' Chin asked.
Sighing Danny said, ''I'll call Steve.''
''Yeah, thanks for letting me know Danny,'' Steve said, running a hand down his face, tiredly. ''Keep me updated.''
He threw his phone down, in frustration.
Steve knew Maddie was good at her job, but that didn't stop him from worrying about her.
Suddenly his phone beeped again, he picked it up, saw it was from Maddie and opened the text message;
Don't think this gets you out of our 'talk', McGarrett.
I'll see you tonight. Have a bottle (of beer) waiting!
He chuckled, and typed back a short but sweet;
Wouldn't dream of it, Sinclair.
See you tonight, watch yourself.
He sent that, and went to check on Kaia. His mind still running through a list of what could go wrong on a mission like that.
It was times like these he really missed being a SEAL.
Maddie and Frank went down first, with Tommy waiting on stand by.
They had spotted movement from the air, about a half-mile from their current position, now they had to get the victim away safely. Without falling off the one of the cliffs in the process.
''No civillain is going to be able to make this trail.'' Frank commented.
Maddie nodded, sighing, ''I know. But we're here to help, so that's exactly what we're going to do.''
She just wished she felt as confident as she sounded.
An hour later they were watching the cave that, at least two guys and the missing girl were in.
From what little of the girl, Maddie had seen, she didn't seem to be hurt. But that didn't mean she wouldn't be soon, if they didn't get her out now.
''What's the plan?'' Frank whispered.
Maddie paused for a moment thinking. ''We have about 90 minutes until the sun sets. We go in, you get her out, I'll cover you.''
Frank looked as if he was about to protest, so Maddie held up a hand.
''The clock is ticking, we do it now,''
She took the safety off her gun, ''Go!'' She ordered, quietly.
Frank followed at her side, clicking the safety off his gun also.
Maddie took point, shouting at the two kidnappers to drop their weapons. Of course they didn't.
Risking a quick glance over to Frank, Maddie saw that he was almost to the mouth of the cave with the girl, who was limping.
That would slow them both down.
As a hail of bullets came towards Maddie, she dived behind one of the ridges and fired back. She hit the tallest guy in the shoulder, forcing him to drop the gun.
He cried out in pain, and tried to lunge for her, but two quick shots to the chest put him down.
The other guy kept firing at her, until the clip clicked empty. He ducked behind a massive boulder to reload, and Maddie seized the oppotunity.
She hurried over to where the guy was crouching, and pointed the gun at his head.
''Drop it, now.''
He did as she said, and raised his hands slowly. But Maddie caught sight of a silver blade in his hand, and jumped back quickly as he slashed at her.
''You people think you're so much better than we are! Well you're not! Kill me, it won't save her!'' He screamed at Maddie.
Now that she was so close to him, Maddie saw that he couldn't have been any older than 21 years old.
'Such a waste...' Maddie thought.
''My team has the girl now. She's safe.'' Maddie replied, coolly.
The guy laughed, ''You think she's important?,'' He shook his head. ''She was just a distraction.''
''McGarrett has one weakness,'' He smirked, and slashed at her again. ''Family.''
Maddie's eyes widened, and she lunged at him, going for his throat.
''No-one is getting anyway near that little girl! I will rip anyone who tried apart with my bare hands! Never mind what McGarrett would do!''
Maddie knew she shouldn't rise to his words, but he was threatening Kaia.
No-one would hurt her or Steve. Maddie really would kill anyone who tried.
She wanted nothing more than smack that stupid grin off the bastards face, then shoot him. But just then Frank stepped back into the cave and said her name.
''Tommy met us half-way. Need a hand?'' He asked, glancing at her hands, which were wrapped around the guys throat.
With great difficultly, Maddie dropped her hands, and shoved him away.
Frank pulled her a few feet away, and spoke in a low voice, ''I didn't see anything. You know that. Tommy said to send you ahead, I'll take care of the kid.''
Maddie nodded, jerkily. She really couldn't afford to kill the sonofabitch right now, not if she wanted to know the plans for Kaia.
She walked out of the small space, and took a deep breath.
She really hoped Steve had taken her text seriously, about the drink.
Once they took the girl to the hospital to get checked over, and handed the remaining perp over to HPD, it was almost 10pm.
Maddie drove her truck to Steve's, knowing she would end up crashing in the guest room, the way she felt right now.
Unlike that morning, Maddie just walked in. She didn't want to wake up the baby by knocking. At least that's what she told herself.
''Hey.'' Steve said, coming out of the kitchen.
'He spends a lot of time in there...' She thought, randomly.
She sighed, and walked over to him.
Frowning, she looked up at him. He smiled slightly at her, unsure of what to do next.
She returned the smile, and guided him to the couch.
''We have a lot to talk about,'' She started.
Steve cut her off, ''Before we do, I just wanted to say,'' He took a deep breath. ''I am sorry about last night. We're both overly tired, and I took it out on you-''
''Because you were jealous.'' Maddie threw in.
''Yeah exactly,'' Steve shrugged. ''Then I realized that I have no right to be jealous.''
Maddie stared at him intently, ''Don't you?''
He kept quiet.
Maddie sighed again, and turned to face him. ''Steve, this is ridiculous. We are getting nowhere...''
Steve ran a hand through his hair, ''I know.''
Maddie shook her head, and decided that being blunt was probably the best way for the both of them. That way they didn't have talk about feelings, something neither of them were good at.
''Why were you jealous?'' She asked.
Steve chuckled, ''Isn't that obvious?''
Maddie raised her eyebrows, ''Because you thought I was dating Tommy.''
He nodded. ''But why did that bother you? We're not dating...'' She added.
Steve looked up at her, ''I know.''
''Why aren't we?'' Maddie said, softly.
''Because we're both to stubborn to admit how we feel?'' He suggested.
She laughed, ''Sounds about right.''
They were silent for a few moments, both trying to figure out what to say next.
''Today, while I was in that cave...one of the guys said something. I have never been so scared in my life. And it made me realized that I can't do this anymore. The whole not telling you thing.'' Maddie said.
She took Steve's hand, and traced patterns into his skin, ''The thought of losing you. You or Kaia.'' She frowned. ''Is there something here. Or am I imagining it?''
Steve squeezed her hand, ''You're not imagining it.''
''Good,'' Maddie smiled at him. ''Wow that was awkward...''
He pulled her into a tight hug and whispered, ''I love you.''
Maddie closed her eyes, and hugged him back, ''I love you too...''
'Finally!' Their minds said as one.
Maddie pulled her shirt over her head, when she heard Kaia start to cry. Steve was still asleep, as she hurried into the nursery.
Kaia had kicked off her blanket, and was sobbing as Maddie picked her up and wrapped her up snugly.
''You have ninja moves, just like daddy...'' Maddie sat down in the rocking chair. ''Uncle Danny is going to have an aneurysm himself when you start walking...''
Maddie wasn't sure how long she sat there, but at long last, Kaia finally drifted to sleep.
Taking it slowly, Maddie stood band put her back into her crib gently.
''Sleep tight, ku`uipo...'' She whispered, with a small smile.
As she stood there by the crib, Steve came into the room and wrapped his arms around her waist.
''Aloha kakahiaka,'' He said quietly, in her ear.
Maddie turned her head slightly, ''Aloha kakahiaka...''
He kissed her cheek lightly, ''You're great with her...''
Maddie closed her eyes, ''It's kind of hard not to love her,''
His arms tightened around her, ''I know the feeling....''
Later that morning, Danny, Rachel, Grace and Scott turned up at the house.
''Hey, Steve's just feeding Kaia, he'll be down in a minute.'' Maddie said, bringing drinks.
''How's Scott doing?'' She asked, smiling at the child in Rachels' arms.
''He's doing okay. I can't believe how much he's grown in the last mouth!'' Rachel said.
Maddie felt a tug on her shirt and looked down, ''Can I see Kaia?'' Gracie asked.
Maddie smiled, ''Sure Gracie. Steve's bringing her down soon.''
Soon was about 10 minutes later, Steve came down and greeted Danny with the usual quip about walking in like he owned the place.
Of course the good natured argument followed. Maddie and Rachel just rolled their eyes.
''They both look like they need this,'' Maddie commented.
They both laughed, making the men look at them funny.
''Uncle Steve, can I see Kaia?'' Gracie asked again, excitedly.
Steve nodded, and told her sit down on the couch.
When she was sat safely, Steve placed Kaia in Gracie's arms.
Maddie thought he showed great personal restraint, in doing that; she knew Grace was mature enough to be able to handle Kaia, but Steve was very protective of his daughter.
Maddie walked over to him, and took his hand behind his back.
Steve smiled at her, and said, ''So Danno...looks like we have something to tell you...''
''We've come a long way since that first day in the garage...'' Danny chuckled, as he and Steve stood on the lanai.
''I don't know...I still want to shoot you sometimes Danno,'' Steve replied, grinning.
Danny tipped his bottle towards Steve, ''Back at you, Rambo!''
They were quiet for a few minutes, then, ''So how are things with you and Maddie?''
Steve smiled, ''Good. For the first time in years we're both on the same page, you know?''
Danny nodded, ''I'm happy for you man,''
Steve couldn't help but agree; he was happy for himself too.
A few weeks passed, without any sign of Catherine, and Steve was slowly starting to un-wind.
His and Maddie's relationship hadn't really changed that much; they knew what had changed between them, but to the outside world they acted exactly the same.
He watched the way Maddie was with Kaia, and realized that it didn't matter that she wasn't the biological mother; Maddie was her mother in every other way that mattered.
Steve had been back into work a couple of times, during specific raids, and Maddie stayed at home with Kaia.
Maddie had pretty much moved in; she spent her days off with him and Kaia, she came to the house after work and stayed the night most nights.
He had almost forgotten what a full nights sleep felt like, since Kaia was born, but he didn't care. For the first time in a long time, Steve was truly happy.
Steve and Maddie had been asleep for only a couple of hours, when heard a loud smashing sound from downstairs.
Barely sparing each other a glance, they moved with an odd synchronicity, both easing open the draws next the bed, and taking out their guns.
Noiselessly, Steve opened the door wider, and slipped out. Maddie followed, but instead of heading to the stairs, she made her way to the nursery.
Kaia was still sleeping, peacefully.
Maddie pointed her gun at the doorway, and took up a protective stance by the crib, ready to kill anyone who made it past Steve.
Steve crept down the stairs, straining his ears for the slightest movement.
He had noticed Maddie heading to check on Kaia, and was immensely grateful, that he didn't have to worry about that.
He couldn't see anyone in the living room, but there was broken glass in the study.
Steve couldn't help but think back to when the Yakuza had sent a couple of henchmen to steal his fathers toolbox; he had been over-powered then, but it wouldn't happen again.
He had never been so glad, that he hadn't had chance to fix the creaky floorboard by the desk, because as he heard it, he ducked, and stuck out his leg.
The guy was around Steve's height, and went down hard.
He tried to kick out Steve's knees' but Steve deflected the kick, and he heard the crack of the guys leg breaking. He shouted out in agony.
Steve flinched, then froze when he heard Kaia cry.
From the corner of his eye, Steve saw a shape sprint for the stairs.
He fired his gun in that direction, but missed when the guy on floor finally landed a kick to Steve's knee.
He dropped to the floor, and tried to scramble up, but the guy had pulled out a blade and was trying to get closer to him.
Steve could hear someone shouting from upstairs, but he couldn't tell what they were saying. Panic threatened to take him over, but he pushed it down.
He had to get upstairs. Now.
Throwing all his strength into it, he punched the guy in the face, knocking him unconscious.
Maddie tried to ignore the sounds of fighting, and concentrate of whether any footsteps were getting closer.
But when Kaia started crying, her stomach dropped to her toes.
She hated herself for not being able to comfort the baby, but if she moved and someone came through that door, they were both dead.
Then she heard the gunshot.
'Oh God, please let have been Steve...' She thought, frantically.
Suddenly a guy was standing in the doorway, and was shouting at her to move away from the baby and drop her weapon.
Maddie stepped to her right, effectively covering Kaia from view. ''Go to Hell.'' She growled.
''Move, and I won't kill you!'' He shouted.
Maddie frowned; he sounded terrified. Why would he offer to let her go?
''By all means, kill me...but I'm taking you with me!'' She said, fiercely.
Maddie barely had time to react before he fired the gun, at her.
Her finger tightened around the trigger of her gun, but before she could fire back, Steve was there, hitting the guy over the head with the butt of his own gun.
He rushed in, and grabbed Madbdie around the waist, pulling her over to the crib.
''Are you okay? Kaia?'' He asked, urgently.
Maddie turned his face towards her, ''Hey, breathe...we're both fine. Shaken up, but okay,''
He checked the baby again, then nodded slowly.
''What about you?'' Maddie asked, looking for any blood.
''M'fine,'' He held her tighter. ''We're okay.''
Maddie put the call into HPD, while Steve called Danny. HPD came and took the heavily bruised burgulars away, Danny arrived not long after.
''Are you guys okay?'' He asked, noticing the ice-pack on Steve's knee.
No-one answered him, but Maddie looked nervous.
''They were after my daughter, Danny.'' Steve said, dangerously.
Danny nodded, ''Yeah I know...we'll get to the bottom of this Steve. No-one is going touch a hair on her head. I swear.''
Maddie had Kaia in her arms, and was watching her sleep.
'Neither of us are going to let her out of our sight, after this...' She thought.
Later, after Danny left, Maddie walked out on to the lanai with Kaia, and stood next to Steve. He was stood ram-rod straight, glaring at the waves, like they themselves had personally offended him.
Maddie laid a hand on his arm, ''Hey, we'll get through this. We'll keep her safe.''
Steve sighed, ''Yeah, I know,''
''There's something else.'' Maddie stated.
He glanced at her, ''You could have been killed tonight.''
Maddie nodded, ''I know, but it's worth it, if she's safe.'' She said, as if it was obvious.
Finally he turned to face her, ''You shouldn't have to-''
Knowing where this was going, Maddie cut him off sharply.
''Look McGarrett, I don't care who says what, I love this little girl like my own, and I will do anything to protect her. Some idiot with a gun is not going to scare me away. I love both of you, and I'm here to stay whether you like or not!''
As if hearing something he had been waiting for, Steve relaxed slightly.
''I definitely like it...'' He said.
''Good.'' She huffed, as he drew them both in for a hug.
''Thank you,'' He muttered, against her hair.
She smiled, ''Don't mention it, Super SEAL,''
Maddie stayed at home that day, while Steve went into HQ to start tracking the sonsofbitches down.
She kept Kaia in the living room, while she cleaned the mess up left from last night. Whenever Maddie thought about someone wanting to hurt such a small innocent child, a rush of fury came over her.
She actually broke a plate, when she was washing up.
She had never seen Steve so angry; not even when he was an active SEAL.
Maddie had meant it when she told him she loved Kaia like her own. And she really would die to protect her.
But she would also die in Steve's place, just so he could continue to protect her himself. Of course Steve would probably shoot her, if he knew she was having those kinds of thoughts.
Finally, after everything was back in it's right place, and rubbish had been thrown away, Maddie sat down and tried to picture the Hawaii she knew from her childhood; the security she felt, the safety her father had always provided to the people. Maddie had never worried about such things as last nights break in, happening when she was a child, because to her the Island was the safest place on Eartbh.
If only that were still true...
Steve led the third raid that day on a run down house, in the middle of one of the worst areas on O'ahu.
''Five-0! Put your hands up!'' Danny shouted, at a group of bald, tattooed gang members sat around a poker table.
They jumped up, raising their hands above their heads, and tried to look innocent.
Steve stormed into the back room, with Chin covering his back, shouting the same directions as Danny.
Unfortunately, his group didn't seem to want to listen to reason, and started to draw their weapons.
Chin saw one on his right, and knocked him out cold.
He turned and yelled out a warning to Steve, but the oldest of the group had already fired, and hit Steve in the arm. Chin took aim and fired, the man dropped to the ground and lay still.
''Steve, you okay, Brah?'' Chin asked, calmly.
Steve was already getting his feet back beneath him, and was holding a hand to his wounded arm.
''Yeah, I'm okay. You?''
Chin nodded, ''I'm good.''
They went back into the main room, and saw that Danny and Kono were busy cuffing the men around the table. HPD arrived and took them away to be questioned.
But the guy Chin had knocked out, suddenly came running out of the back room, and straight into Steve.
Steve twisted, so the perp took the fall, and hit his once in the jaw. Enjoying the feel of it breaking under his fist.
He stood up, and looked at Danny, ''Book 'em, Danno.''
Steve crossed his arms over his chest, and glared at the suspect, sat cowering in the interview room chair.
''I am going to ask you once, nicely,'' He stepped forward. ''If you don't tell me the truth, then...well we all know how that one goes. Right?''
Kawika nodded, hastily.
Steve nodded to Danny who was leaning against the far wall. He dropped a small file of photos on the floor by Kawikas' feet. Photos he and Maddie had taken of Kaia.
''Why does your gang leader want her dead?'' Steve growled.
Kawika flinched, ''I don't know...he said something about,'' He gulped. ''If we were the ones to get your kid, then no-one would ever mess with us again. And he would pay us big money.''
Danny's eyebrows rose at those words; he had heard something along those lines, back home in New Jersey.
Steve stared at Kawika, hard for a few moments then asked, ''How many are after her?''
''Just the ones that were in the house. I swear!'' Kawika said, hoarsely.
''Danny?'' Steve muttered.
''Yeah, I got it.'' Danny replied, walking towards Kawika.
Steve nodded to him, then turned and left the interrogation room.
Chin and Kono were in the bull-pen, waiting for them to return.
''Hey Boss,'' Kono said, quietly. ''You get anything?''
Steve shrugged warily, ''Apparently, we cleaned them out.''
''Do we believe that?'' Chin asked.
''Not for a second.'' Steve responded, darkly.
''Steve! We got something!'' Danny called, entering his office.
Steve stood and hurried into the main room.
''What is it?'' He asked.
''Kawika cracked,'' Danny smirked. ''Told me a couple hideouts, and a few names.''
''How did you swing that?''
Danny gestured to himself, ''I'm a good detective...I told you, it's all about psychology.''
Steve rolled his eyes, ''Okay so what do we have?''
''An address in Kapahulu, and Waikiki. And names, Henele Quinn, Keli Vance, Konolu Tachino.''
Steve nodded, ''Chin?''
''On it.'' The older man replied.
Steve and Danny entered the dingy bar, and looked around. Apart from an elderly native man sitting in the corner, the place was deserted.
The guy wiping glasses behind the bar, watched them as they approached.
''Can I help you?'' He asked, frowning.
Danny smiled at him, ''We're looking for a friend of ours, Keli Vance?''
The bar man nodded, then suddenly made a break for the back door.
Kono and Chin both stood there waiting for him.
They grinned at him, forcing him back inside.
Steve cocked his head to the side, ''Now, Vance?''
Keli Vance was an idiot.
He answered his door, and didn't even recognise Steve as the father of the child he had been told to kill.
Danny shook his head in disbelief, ''Wow...''
''Vance, right?'' Steve said, rhetorically. ''I'm McGarrett.'' He pointed to himself.
Vance stopped smiling, ''Look man it isn't personal-''
Steve laughed humorlessly, ''Ohh...okay,''
Danny cuffed him and stuffed him into the HPD car as it pulled up.
''Is it me or are criminals getting even more dense?'' Danny commented.
Steve slapped him on the back, ''It's okay Danno, it's not like it's personal...''
Henele Quinn and Konolu Tachino were at the same address, which had an up-side and down-side.
The up-side was, they didn't have to trail around O'ahu looking for them both. The down-side was, they both made a run for it.
Steve took off after Quinn, while Danny ran after Tachino.
Quinn didn't get far before Steve took him out with one of his favourite 'Batman tackles', as Danny liked to call them, and tried to ignore the burning pain in his shoulder.
Quinn ended up with a broken nose, and busted cheek bone.
In Steve's opinion, he got off lightly.
Tachino thought he had lost Danny, when he glanced over his shoulder and didn't see the detective.
''Looking for me?'' Danny asked, knocking him to the ground with a trash can lid.
He groaned and glared at Danny.
Steve interrogated Quinn, Danny took Tachino, Chin got Vance and Kono went to see if she could get anymore out of Kawika.
An hour later they all met back in the main room.
''Look's like we got the entire gang.'' Chin said.
''One less on the streets to worry about,'' Kono agreed.
''At least Kaia's in the clear...'' Danny said.
''For now,'' Steve muttered.
When Steve arrived home later that evening, he found Maddie pulling funny faces at Kaia.
''Are you trying to scare her?'' He asked, laughing.
She grinned at him, ''I was bored.''
Her grin faded as she took in the look in his eyes, ''How did it go?''
''We got them, all of them.'' He replied.
Maddie smiled, ''Well that's brilliant! Why do you look like you still want to punch someone in the face?''
He sighed, ''Because there's probably other gangs out there with the same idea,''
Maddie came over and put her arms around his neck, ''Yes, you're probably right,''
He frowned at her, ''Aren't you supposed to argue?''
''You didn't let me finish.'' She said, seriously. ''Even if there is, no-one will hurt her. She has Five-0 protecing her. She has you...''
Steve rested their foreheads together, ''And you.''
Maddie smiled, ''And me.''
Steve brought Kaia's crib into their room that night, just so they could both relax a little.
''Give it a few days to settle down, and we can move it back.'' Steve said.
Maddie sat on the side of the bed and watched as Steve put the baby down for the night.
She knew his shoulder must be hurting, but he didn't let that stop him from holding her close before placing her in the crib.
A few minutes later, Steve turned away and walked to his side of the bed, trying to pull his shirt over his head.
Maddie chuckled, ''Let me help you with that,'' She eased his injured arm through, and pulled the material away.
''Have you taken your pain meds?'' Maddie asked, already knowing the answer would be a no.
Steve shook his head, ''I don't need them,''
''Hey, I've been shot before, okay? I know it hurts.'' She knelt up on the bed in front of him. ''I also happen to know, the real reason why you won't take them...''
She nodded slowly, ''Because you're worried something will happen in the night, and you won't be able to do anything about it.''
Steve frowned at her, ''You know me too well.''
''Take them,'' She said. ''Nothing will happen.''
''How about a compromise; I'll take them if the pain gets too bad and not before.'' He countered.
Maddie pursed her lips, ''Fine. But you have to promise to take them,''
He sighed, ''I pro-''
Maddie kissed him, softly.
''Don't tell me you've forgotten how to make a promise...?'' She whispered, against his lips.
He smiled, and kissed her back.
They pulled away when the need for air became too much.
''We should compromise more often,'' Maddie giggled, slightly.
Steve grinned at her, and moved until they were laying side by side on the bed.
They were silent for a while, both listening to the waves crashing in the distance.
Steve rolled on to his side, and lifted a hand to stroke the side of Maddie's face.
''Marry me,'' He whispered, seriously.
She looked at him in surprise, ''What?''
''Marry me...'' He repeated.
She propped herself up on one elbow, ''Are you serious?''
Steve nodded, ''Never been more serious about anything in my life.''
''So...what do you say?'' He asked, nervously.
Maddie smiled and threw her arms around his neck, ''Yes!"
He hugged her back tightly, ''I love you,'' He breathed, intimately.
Maddie pulled back and looked deep into his eyes, ''I love you too, Super SEAL...
Chapter 12: Epilogue: Mau Loa
November 18th 2011 (The Hilton Hotel)
Maddie stared at her reflection in the full length mirror, and sighed.
Kono, Rachel and Grace were all waiting outside, for another glimpse of the dress.
But Maddie was having a hard time calming her breathing and struggling not to cry.
Mom should be here... Her mind kept whispering.
When she was little, she and her mother would talk about having the perfect princess styled wedding. But now Maddie just couldn't find the enthusiasm for the little details.
She couldn't wait to marry Steve. He had always been the 'prince' she and her mother spoke about, but Maddie knew it would never be the same without their parents there.
Maddie was happy with her decision to ask Chin to give her away, but still...
May 29th 2011 Chin Ho Kelly's House
Maddie walked up the garden path, and knocked on the door, waiting patiently for Chin to answer.
A few moments later the door opened, and Chin appeared.
''Maddie? Is everything okay?'' He asked, worriedly.
Maddie nodded hastily, ''Yeah everythings' fine. I was just wondering if I could talk to you...?''
Chin moved to the side, to let her come in, ''Of course...''
Once she was sat on the couch, Chin came back with drinks, and sat down next to her.
''So, what is it you wanted to talk about?'' He asked, curiously.
Maddie bit her lip; she had everything she wanted to say all planned out, but now sitting here with Chin right in front of her...the words seemed stupid.
''Chin I...I was wondering,'' She looked down into her cup of coffee.
Breathe... She told herself.
''I was wondering,'' Maddie finally raised her eyes, and looked at Chin. ''If you would give me away?''
Chins eyes widened slightly; he seemed surprised that she would ask him to do something so important.
''Are you sure?'' He asked, softly.
Maddie smiled, feeling less awkward now the words were out there, ''I'm sure,''
She felt the need to add more, taking his hand she squeezed it firmly.
''When my father spoke of you, it was as if he were speaking about his own son. He trusted and respected you. So do I. You're Ohana, Chin. And I would really love it if you would be in the wedding.'' She said.
Chin hugged her, ''I would be honoured,'' He said, quietly.
Taking a deep breath, Maddie opened the bedroom door and stepped out in the living area.
Kono was her Maid of Honour, Rachel and Mary-Ann were Bridesmaids and Grace was the Flower girl. Grace was so excited, she almost couldn't stay still.
The four of them all turned and stared at her when she cleared her throat.
''So, what do you think?'' Maddie asked, spinning a little. And feeling completely stupid.
''You look like a princess, Maddie!'' Grace said, happily.
Maddie grinned at the little girl, ''Thank you Gracie.''
''Maddie, you look...beautiful.'' Rachel said, softly.
''McGarrett is one lucky guy,'' Kono added.
Mary-Ann just looked at her, knowing that Maddie would pick up on everthing in that one look. Maddie understood, loud and clear.
Maddie was pretty sure she was blushing by now, but she thanked them both with a hug anyway.
After returning to her night clothes, she hung the dress up in the wardbrobe and laid down on the bed.
She was marrying Steve in, she checked her watch, just under 16 hours.
Mrs Maddison McGarrett, definitely has a nice ring to it... Maddie smiled to herself. With that thought, she fell asleep.
Steve paced in his room, stopping every so often to make sure he hadn't woken up any of his guests or Kaia.
He was getting married tomorrow. Married.
Growing up, he had pictured himself with a family of his own, but then he had joined the Navy, and figured that he wouldn't get the chance.
Now he had a 6 month old daughter, and he was marrying the woman he had loved pretty much his entire life.
But things did tend to go wrong, when they least expected them too.
It was after midnight by the time Steve laid down on his bed.
Mrs Maddison McGarrett, definitely has a nice ring to it... Steve smiled to himself. With that thought, he fell asleep.
Grace woke Maddie up the following morning, jumping on her bed and calling her name.
Maddie groaned, and rolled over. Then she realized why Gracie was so excited, and sat bolt upright.
Grace almost toppled off the bed, but Maddie grabbed her arm and pulled her back on.
''Good morning, my pretty little flower girl,'' Maddie grinned.
''Morning Princess Maddie!'' Grace giggled, playing along.
''Sorry, I couldn't keep up with her.'' Rachel smiled, from the doorway.
''Don't worry about it,'' Maddie yawned. ''Where's Kono?''
''On the phone to Chin, going over the final plans.''
Maddie shook her head, ''They're treating this whole thing like a high profile case!''
''Mommy, can I call Danno?'' Grace asked.
Rachel nodded, and Grace left to find her mothers cell phone.
''Rachel, can I call Steve?'' Maddie asked, hopefully.
The tall brunette glared at her, ''No, you and Steve decided on a traditional Hawaiian wedding, but this is a must. Trust me, Steve won't believe his eyes when he see's you walking towards him later.''
Maddie nodded, glumly, ''Fine, I won't call him.''
''Good now come on, shower, hair and make-up then it's time to put on the dress. Go!''
Maddie threw back the covers, and stood at attention, ''Yes Ma'am!''
Steve was up before his usual time the next morning. He sat on the edge of the bed for awhile watching Kaia sleep, thinking about everything that would be happening in just a few hours.
After a while, he went downstairs and out onto the Lanai.
From there he could see the place where the ceremony would take place.
The same place they had both grown up; in his minds eye he could see the pair of them running around the garden when they were kids, playing a two person game of tag. Sometimes Maddie's father would join them, and make it a little harder for them.
Steve smiled; he couldn't wait for sunset when he would finally see her.
''Rambo, you out there?'' Danny called, before stepping out of the door.
''Yeah I'm here,'' Steve replied. He didn't even mind Danny calling him Rambo anymore, something which he once thought would've been impossible.
''Chin's making breakfast, you coming in?'' He said.
Steve nodded, ''I'll be there in a minute.''
Danny left and went back inside, leaving Steve to wonder what today would've been like if his parents had been here to celebrate with them.
The day passed quickly for Maddie, she spent most of it sat in a very comfortable chair having her hair and make-up done.
Rachel was checking in with Danny about the babies and Steve. Something Maddie found hilarious to no end.
Soon enough she was standing, once again, in front of the full length mirror.
Her eyebrows rose; she look...nice.
The make-up was only light, and her hair was in soft curls, framing her face. The flowers wouldn't be put on her head until they reached the house. But she had seen them, and they tied in pretty well with the bridemaid dresses.
Even the dress wasn't over the top; just a simple white beach wedding dress. Not a frill or bow in sight. Lastly, she fastened the locket Steve had given her around her neck.
''I bet you $10 Steve stutters when he see's you,'' Kono said, playfully. Maddie rolled her eyes.
''Steve is a highly trained Naval Officer. Nothing fazes him. He will not stutter just because I'm in a dress for the first time since,'' She frowned. ''Well for the first time ever.''
Kono held her hands up in mock surrender, ''Whatever you say, you're the one marrying him.''
''Damn straight, I am.'' She ran her hands down the soft material. ''And I can't wait.''
Steve helped set up some tables and chairs while Danny went to get his suit on and talk to Rachel on the phone, and Chin went to pick up Maddie. Danny had told him to stay upstairs or with Kaia, not to do anything stupid or Rambo-ish, but Steve had started to feel cooped up in the bedroom. A feeling he had always hated. So he had gone downstairs, and offered to help out.
He just hoped Danny didn't find out.
So Steve let himself be ordered around for an hour before retreating back to his bedroom.
Tonight Kaia would go to Danny and Rachel's, so he and Maddie could have some time alone. He wasn't sure how he would get on knowing she wasn't down the hall; she had been for almost seven months.
Although something told Steve, he wouldn't really be doing that much thinking...
''You look amazing,'' Chin smiled, as Maddie stood in front of him.
''Thanks, Brah...'' She replied, returning his smile.
The girls all got into the back of the hired limo; which Maddie hadn't had any idea about, and left for Steve and Maddie's house.
''How's Steve?'' Maddie asked Chin as he drove. She couldn't understand why Chin was driving, but it didn't seem all that important, so she didn't ask.
Chin glanced at her in the mirror, ''Uncomfortable with all of the attention he's getting, but other than that...he's good.''
Maddie grinned to herself, he had always hated being the center of attention.
''I wonder if he's thrown up yet,'' Mary said, lightly. Maddie elbowed her, but the amusement in her eyes ruined the reproach.
The trip was only short, so they were soon pulling up in front of the house. Maddie's stomach was in knots, with nerves, but the excited won out and she grew impatient waiting for the others to sort themselves out, and get the flowers in her hair.
On the other the house, her soon-to-be-husband was waiting for her.
Danny found him in the bedroom, standing near the window in his Naval uniform, holding the old set of dog-tags.
''What are those, from your Navy days?'' Danny asked.
Steve frowned; hadn't had told Danny about them before? He guessed not.
''Maddie gave them to me when we were kids,'' Steve smiled. ''She came to visit the mainland one Christmas, and we...'' He trailed off.
Danny caught on, ''Bet that was one Merry Christmas...'' He joked, getting a laugh out of Steve.
''Are you wearing them for the wedding?'' He added.
''Yeah, Maddie would probably kill me if I chose today of all days to take them off.'' Steve replied, placing them over his head.
''Well buddy, it's time. Maddie will be arriving in just under 15 minutes...let's go.'' Danny clapped him on the back.
The Minister was on the beach outside the house, with the few guest they had invited.
They had both agreed on a small ceremony, with just family and close friends. So far, Maddie's team, Kamekona and their Ohana were there, now they were just waiting on the bride herself.
Steve had gotten a text from Mary-Ann telling him they were leaving the hotel, not so long ago, so he knew she wouldn't be much longer.
The nerves were starting up again in full force, but Steve didn't care, Maddie was here.
He watched as she stepped out of the house, and walked down the garden towards the small patch of beach.
He had never seen her look so beautiful. He knew Kono, Rachel, Mary and Grace all were there looking pretty too, but he only had eyes for Maddie.
When their eyes met, she smiled at him, and the nerves he had been feeling evaporated.
Why had he been so worried? He couldn't remember.
Chin was at her side, and as they finally reached the flower circle on the sand, he placed Maddie's hand in Steve's.
''You look beautiful,'' He whispered, softly.
She smiled again, then turned sllightly and winked at Kono.
Steve made a mental note to ask her about that later.
The Minister cleared his throat, and raised his arms towards them.
''Aloha, Maddison and Steven,'' Steve felt Maddie shudder as he used her full name.
''The Hawaiian word, aloha, literally means to give and share the sacred breath of life. Yes, it is a greeting, and it does mean “love”, but it means so much more than that, for to greet someone with aloha is to greet them with the essence of life - our breath,'' Maddie looked at Steve from the corner of her eye, and saw him smiling slightly.
''I know of no other language that has such a personal, intimate, spiritual greeting. “HA “is the breath. These islands are named for that as well. Let us share the aloha now by taking a moment to breathe deeply together.'' Everyone took a deep breath, then Kamekona coughed loudly, and a ripple of laughter flowed through the crowd.
''Besides sharing the aloha with each other it is relaxing, cleansing and calming. Be aware of the tropical breezes, for the Hawaiians believe that carried on the winds at a wedding are the spirits of absent loved ones.'' Both Maddie and Steve glanced at each other, at those words.
''This includes your ancestors, and those who have passed on to another plane of existence, as well as your friends and family all over the world.. Feel their blessing caress your faces as we share an aloha breath. At any time during the ceremony, should you become strongly aware of the breeze, consider it to be the blessing presence of a loved one here in spirit. The blowing of the conch shell, or Pu, did invoke their presence as well. Love transcends all time and space.''
The Minister took a look around the guests, smiling at everyone, and carried on.
''Please chant, E Ho Mai,'' Steve was almost sure he heard Danny groan, quietly.
''This chant calls upon Mana or divine power to bring wisdom and understanding to this place. Please close your eyes and seek that place deep inside from which you draw your strength and inspiration. Whatever you believe God, Mana, or a higher power to be, call upon that divine spirit to be with you now and always.''
''The Prayer is; E Ko makou Makua iloko o ka lani. E hoano ia ko Inoa,'' His voice rose slightly.
''Almighty God, Divine Power of the Universe, we call upon your presence to Maddison and Steven as they join their lives in Holy Matrimony. Smile on them today and always. Be with them in their times of joy and of need. Give them patience and understanding to deal with the challenges of life. Fill their hearts with compassion for each other and for others. Bless their home and all who enter it. May they walk in the light of your love from this day forward. No ka mea, Nou ke aupuni, a me ka mana, a me ka ho onani ia a mau loa aku, Amene. Amene.''
He gestured for Steve and Maddie to face each other.
Maddie couldn't wipe the grin off her face, although it looked to her like Steve was having the same problem, so she didn't worry about it too much.
''Congratulations, Maddison and Steven, on your marriage. You are in one of the most beautiful places in the world. But we are celebrating a different kind of beauty today; your love. So joyous and deep that you have called us together to witness and celebrate your marriage.''
Danny stepped forward as the Bestman, Kono as the Maid of Honour, and stood to the side with the lei's at the ready.
''A Hawaiian wedding often begins as it does today with the exchange of leis. We do this for several reasons. One is that the lei is an unbroken circle, like the rings that soon will be blessed and exchanged, representing the eternal commitment of your hearts together. Also, as each flower is brought into the circle, it loses none of its individual beauty, reminding us that in the unity of your love, you have lost none of your unique individuality. In fact, the loving care and nurturing security of your relationship helps you grow even more fully into that special person with whom your partner fell in love.''
Steve's smiled widened as he caught Maddie's eye again.
Danny handed the lei to Steve, and stepped back.
''Steven, please place this Lei around the neck of your beautiful bride, and as you do so please give her a kiss,''
Steve did as he was told, and placed a soft, loving kiss on Maddie's lips.
Kono came forward and handed Steve's lei to Maddie, before backing into her original position.
''And likewise, Maddison, place this Lei around the neck of your beloved with a kiss.''
''The Hawaiians have always had a sensitivity to the sacredness of special times and places. This is true of you as well. When you think of all the places you could have chosen, I believe you were guided to be right here today and this becomes a sacred place because of your love and the vows that you will soon share. I selected a lava rock from this place to perform a short blessing at the end of this ceremony.''
Maddie wondered why they would have that particular tradition; they were staying on the Island. Usually only visitors did that.
''There is an additional significance as well. We see only the surface of the land. Below, unseen, is the power and depth of A’ina. So too, many others will see the outer expression of your love for each other, but only the two of you know the true and unseen depth of you inner union, that profound place in the heart where you have been strengthened and enriched by love.''
Steve almost nodded along with the Ministers word, but managed to stop himself in time to save looking like an idiot.
He would never hear the end of it, if he did something stupid now, in front of Danny and his team.
''This can also be compared to the beauty of the Pacific Ocean surrounding us here on the Island, which you have chosen as the backdrop to your ceremony. We see constant changes on the surface of the sea, but below, unseen, is an almost infinite depth, abundant, teaming life. Life requires constant attention to the surface details of career, family and daily life. For all of this you are drawing from an inner depth, what the Hawaiians call Mana, guidance and direction for the decisions of life. I am confident that the best Mana you have ever followed is demonstrated today in your choice of life partners.''
Maddie was getting restless; she really hated wearing dresses. She would slip away as soon as she could and put on a pair of leggings. She felt naked, like she wouldn't be able to defend herself if anything happened.
Why she was thinking of things like that while getting married, she had no idea...but stilll, she would feel better.
She tuned back in, and listened to the Minister carry on with his speech.
''I want to speak of one final element to conclude this portion of the ceremony. If we mention A’ina and Sea, let’s include as well a reference to the beautiful mountains that surround us; the Koolau mountain range to the east of us. The Waianae mountain range to the west of us. Telescopes are looking outward and upward, making new discoveries every day,'' The Minister smiled at Maddie as he saw her shift.
She was positive she blushed.
''I have been talking about your inner love. These mountains suggests the importance of looking outward to the circle of family and friends that surround you. The Hawaiians call this your Ohana, and one tradition says that at a wedding the stirring of the wind represents those absent loved ones who join you now in this joyous celebration. We are the ones blessed to be present, but we give thanks and express appreciation for those others who have been such an important part of bringing you to this loving moment.''
The couple nodded to few people, who had helped get them to the spot where they now stood.
''Continue to celebrate your love. Occasionally step aside from the busy-ness of your lives to enhance the intimacy of your relationship.'' Maddie squeezed Steve's hand, without looking at him. He got the message.
''May these Leis remind you of the dynamics of a healthy relationship, a giving and receiving of a gift from the heart. Sometimes the simple gift of a flower says how much you mean to each other, that you want your relationship to continue to blossom, to be fragrant, to grow,''
The Minister gestured to Steve and Maddie, ''It is now time to exchange your Vows,''
Steve stood at attention, automatically. It had been drilled into him for so long, he wasn't even completely aware he was doing it.
''Steven, do you take Maddison to be your wife, to have and to hold from this day forth, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, treasuring her in your heart as the special gift that she is to you, striving to do all that you can to make her to feel happy and secure, treating her with understanding, kindness and respect for all the days before you?''
''I do.'' Steve said, loud enough for everyone to hear, and slipped the ring on her wedding finger.
While he put the ring on her hand, the Minister chanted, "Eia iha no ka maluhia o na lani me kakou a pau,"
He held Maddie's eyes, while the Minister repeated the question to her.
''Maddison, do you take Steven to be your husband, to have and to hold from this day forth, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, treasuring him in your heart as the special gift that he is to you, striving to do all that you can to make him to feel happy and secure, treating him with understanding, kindness and respect for all the days before you?''
''I do.'' Maddie said, with a sheen of tears in her eyes. She pushed Steve's wedding band onto his finger gently, and ran her own finger over it.
There were a few cheers, before everyone went silent, listening to the Minister again.
''As I mentioned at the beginning of the service, I now take this lava rock and Ti leaf to perform the final blessing. The rock represents this moment and place of your marriage - made sacred by your love. Wrapped in the leaf it is a traditional Hawaiian offering, prayer and blessing. You are to place it anywhere you choose on the island, someplace important to the pair of you. It remains there. Your rings are with you everywhere you go, a reminder of your marriage and love. The rock marks your entrance into a promised land, that of marriage, full of rich promise and unlimited potential. May the joy of your many years together far exceed even your greatest expectation.''
They've changed a few things, to make it work for us... Maddie thought, gratefully.
''We have had a very special honor here today to witness your love and aloha expressed through your exchange of lei's, vows, and rings. And now by the authority that has been entrusted to me by the State of Hawaii, I pronounce that you are Husband and Wife. Would you like to seal your vows with a kiss?''
Steve didn't need to be asked twice; he wrapped his arms around Maddie, and pulled her in for a passionate kiss, that sent shivers down her spine.
The Minister said the last blessing chant;
"Kumu Tis'a Kalili, Kahula o ka Moana Pakipika,
A - Aloha Mai - May you always be surrounded with love
E - Ea Ea - Every breath you take is sweet and good
I - Ike Pono - See, Know, Recognize Goodness in You - Others - Everything
O - Ola Mau Loa - May your lives Be Long
U - Uwehe E Be - free from harm
Ha'awi Loko Mai ka'i - Wishes Given from Goodness Within
Loa'a Mai Loko Maika'i - Received from Goodness Within,''
He placed his hand over Maddie and Steve joined ones, “I Ho’okahi kahi ke aloha ua mau; Be united as one, in love forever.''
He then turned to the guests, and held his arms high in the air, ''It is now an honor for me to present to you, Steven and Maddison McGarrett, Husband and Wife!''
The crowd clapped, and another cheer went up. Grace actually jumped up and down, with a huge smile on her face.
The first thing Maddie did after stepping out of the flower circle, was take Kaia from Mary-Ann and hold her close.
''Hey sweetheart, I missed you,'' Maddie whispered, kissing the her cheek. Kaia picked at a strand of Maddie's hair, and did her usual baby laugh. Something that Maddie never got tired of hearing.
Steve came over and wrapped his arms around Maddie's waist, resting his chin on her shoulder.
''Hello, Mrs McGarrett...'' He murmured, in her ear.
Maddie leanded back into him, ''Hmm, that sounds nice.''
''Good, you better get used to it,'' He chuckled.
They split up for a few minutes, both going to thank their 'entourage'.
''Thank you guys for everything. Rachel you are a genius! The flowers are perfect,'' Maddie said, hugging them all.
She crouched down, ignoring Rachel's muffled protests about the dress.
''Gracie, you were amazing! Thank you so much,'' She hugged her tightly.
''You're welcome Maddie!''
They spoke for a while more, while Maddie kept an eye on Steve.
''Danny, Brah, thanks for today,'' Steve said, shaking his hand.
''Well, it was the least I could do. You definitely made our wedding un-forgettable.'' Danny replied, refering to his and Rachels' second marriage. Steve had been the best man for him, and although the wedding had gone smoothly, Danny had to use his cane whenever he wanted to move.
They shared grins, and a manly hug, then Danny went to get 'a well deserved beer'.
The crowd all moved up towards the house, and the tables and chairs that were in the garden. Food covered tables were just in front of the lanai, and of course Kamekona was the first there.
Steve and Maddie made rounds to each of the guests, talking to each of them, and thanking them for coming. It didn't too long, and soon they were at Maddie's team members.
''Maddie, it was perfect. Everyone was almost in tears,'' Tommy said, happily.
Maddie shrugged, ''We aim to please,''
''Never seen you in a dress Maddie...why is that?'' Frank asked. She supposed it was his way of saying she looked nice.
''Because they are very impractical, and I can honestly say you will never see me in another dress ever again,'' She replied, smiling.
Tommy chuckled, ''At least until Kaia's wedding,''
Maddie bit her lip to keep from laughing, at the look on Steve's face.
''Which, of course, won't happen for years...'' She threw in. Steve nodded, firmly.
Suddenly Grace came running over, ''Uncle Steve! Mommy told me to tell you, that Auntie Kono told her that it's time for the first dance.''
He looked confused, so Maddie pointed over to the small patch of garden that wasn't taken up with furniture. She raised her eyebrows, as he got a look of determination in his eyes.
''You okay there, Super SEAL?'' She asked, amused.
''Never better, Mrs Super SEAL,'' He shot back.
Her mouth dropped open in realization, ''Oh...yeah.''
He took her hand, and led her into the slowly forming circle.
''Now, try not to break our legs, 'kay...'' Maddie laughed, as he placed his hands on her hips.
His face grew serious, ''I can't make that promise.''
She smacked his arm, ''Shut up and dance.''
''We've been married for an hour and already you're bossing me around,'' He said, in mock outrage.
She narrowed her eyes at him, ''Dance.''
He smiled, and nodded at the 'D.J', who was standing just off the side of the 'dancefloor'.
The wedding music changed into a slow melodic chime, then the song began.
'Oh, my love, my darling
I've hungered for your touch
A long, lonely time...'
Maddie felt the tears in her eyes, and blinked them away, ''You remembered?''
Steve nodded, ''Of course, I remembered. It's not everyday your best friend tells you what music she wants to hear at her wedding...''
Maddie rested her head against his chest, as they revolved in a small, slow circle.
'And time goes by so slowly
And time can do so much,
Are you still mine?
I need your love
I need your love
God, speed your love to me!'
Other couples started to join them, but kept their distance, leaving them to their few moments of peace. Steve's hands made their way to her back, enclosing her completely.
'Lonely rivers flow
To the sea, to the sea
To the open arms of the sea
Lonely rivers sigh,
''Wait for me, wait for me''
I'll be coming home, wait for me!'
Maddie had always loved this song; her parents had danced to it at their wedding, and when she had heard it for the first time, she had fallen in love with the lyrics.
She had had no idea how real they would become to her over the course of her life. They seemed to compliment her and Steve's relationship perfectly.
She smiled against his shoulder, and tightened her hold on him.
'Oh, my love, my darling
I've hungered, hungered for your touch
A long, lonely time
And time goes by so slowly,
And time can do so much
Are you still mine?
''Aloha No Au Ia 'Oe...'' Steve breathed, into her hair.
She looked up at him, ''I love you too, Steve,'' He leant down slightly, and kissed her tenderly.
'I need your love
I need your love
God, speed your love to me!'
''Mau Loa,'' Maddie whispered, as the kiss and song drifted to an end.
*Mau Loa - Forever
*Aloha No Au la 'Oe - I truly love you