Word Count: 480
Notes: Coda to 1x18, Loa Aloha. Also, just making in under the wire for the Hawaii Five-0 Blowout today. :D
Steve’s expecting Danny to show up. It’s why he doesn’t lock the door, doesn’t set the alarm. He just goes into the kitchen and grabs a beer and waits.
It’s less than two hours before Danny throws the door open and walks past where Steve’s sitting on the couch. Steve listens as Danny opens the refrigerator, cracks a beer, slams the door shut, and walks back in to slump into the couch.
“He was at the airport.”
“Yeah,” Steve answers.
“I let him go.”
Danny’s angry, suddenly, the defeat a thing of the past as he surges up and leans over the couch, right in Steve’s space. “You know, of course you know, because you fucking know everything, you know. You know my brother and you know he left, and you know I let him get on that goddamned plane, and-”
“Hey,” Steve says gently, grabbing Danny’s beer and setting it beside his own empty bottle on the coffee table. “Hey, c’mere, hey.”
Danny stiffens further as Steve wraps his arms around the smaller man, but he only holds out for a few seconds before he slumps into Steve’s chest, the fight leaving him just as quickly as it had come. His hands clutch at the back of Steve’s shirt. “I let him go,” he repeats, but now he sounds destroyed, like watching Matt get onto the plane had broken him. Steve’s not sure that it didn’t.
“He’s your brother,” Steve says simply. It’s not that easy and they both know it, but it’s easier to take since they both know it’s a lie.
“Rachel knows,” Danny says by way of reply. “All of it.”
“Okay,” Steve murmurs into Danny’s hair. “Is she okay? Grace?”
“They’re fine.” Now Danny just sounds exhausted. “I let him go. Compromised myself.”
“I’d have done the same thing,” Steve tells him, and it’s the God’s-honest truth. “In a heartbeat.”
“I don’t think Mary’s ever fucked something up as massively as Matty did,” Danny replies, and if it’s meant to be funny, well, neither of them comments.
Steve shakes his head, though, because that’s not what he meant. “For Matty, Danno. I would have let him go.”
Neither of them says anything for a few long minutes. They just sit together, Danny curled into Steve’s body, Steve’s thumb stroking across the base of Danny’s spine. “Why?” Danny asks finally, voice half-broken, half-curious. It’s an agonizing combination.
“He’s your brother,” Steve replies. “I’d let him go because it’s important to you.”
The silence that follows is different than that of a moment before; it’s easy, almost peaceful, and there’s no weight of expected questions in it. Steve keeps his arms settled around Danny’s body, keeps moving his thumb, and feels for the first time since Danny slammed his way in that Danny’s not going to shatter apart right in front of him, not today.