There are two more parts that I'll hopefully be posting before the weekend! I hope you like this one. As always, I do not own these characters and this is just for entertainment.
(And in case you missed it, this is my McRoll fic of Catherine and Steve and what was going on with them in last season's finale.)
If you've missed the other parts, you can find them here:
Just Say It
Steve was up early to make some phone calls about Sameer. It was like the guy had just disappeared with a nuke and every lead turned into a dead end. Steve ran his hands through his hair, his frustration level rising. He needed a run to get some of this energy out and clear his head. He grabbed his running clothes and shoes and changed before he slipped quietly out of the house, not wanting to wake Catherine. He pounded the sand, the monotonous rhythm soothing as he thought through his options. Sameer had to have reached out to someone to buy that nuke. That was the only logical explanation. And he was going to find this guy if it was the last thing he did. And that meant he needed to call Anders. He was his last resort guy, the person he’d never call unless he was out of options. And that’s where he was at.
With that settled, his mind turned to Catherine and the options he had there. Having her home was a great start. He just needed to figure out a way to talk to her. Maybe he’d just ask her what her plans were, get it out there. Today. His feet slowed and he walked the last bit home, watching the sun on the water. It was one of the most beautiful, clear days they'd had in a while and maybe that was a good omen. No matter what happened, though, his mood was considerably better than what it was when he started his run.
He unlocked the door and went inside, reminded of how many times Catherine had done that run with him. She loved the water almost as much as he did and the way running in the sand felt. The last time they’d run that route, though, they’d ended up in the surf, laughing and kissing, the water running over them like a cool blanket as he held her.
Pushing that memory aside, he walked to the kitchen, the house as quiet as it always was. The jet lag had really knocked Catherine out. He went to the fridge to get a bottle of water and noticed her suitcase stashed in the corner between the kitchen and living room, the same place it had been when he’d seen it yesterday. Had she set it down and watched for him to come in from his swim from the kitchen window? And if she was staying, why hadn’t she taken it upstairs? So many questions and no answers.
He finished off his water and grabbed the suitcase. For now, she was staying and she would need her stuff when she woke up. He carried it up the stairs and carefully opened his bedroom door. Setting the luggage down where she would see it, he turned to watch her for a minute. She was curled around his pillow and in that instant, he wished it was him she was holding and not just his pillow. He rubbed his hand over his neck, his thoughts drifting back to the last morning they’d spent together. He’d woken up before her and watched her sleep, just like he was doing now. She had this smile on her face, just a small one that let you know she was thinking of something happy. Does she dream about me as much as I dream about her? With a sigh, he went into the bathroom and turned on the water. A cold shower was just what he needed. Maybe he’d even splurge and make it an extra long one today.
Once he was done, he dried off and grabbed his tux pants and shirt. He needed to get dressed for Kono’s wedding, but he planned to put off wearing the tie and jacket until he absolutely had to. He’d call Anders, make something to eat, and then finish dressing for the wedding. Kono wanted to make sure everyone was on time and he didn’t want to disappoint her. With one last look at a sleeping Catherine, he went downstairs.
Pulling out his phone, he took a deep breath. The last time he’d talked to Anders, the guy had been a CIA gopher with zero clout. Now he was a department head with access to a lot of resources Steve needed pointed at finding Sameer. Dialing the number, Anders picked up on the second ring. “Anders, it’s McGarrett.” He glanced at his watch, forgetting about the time difference between them. Getting the guy up early probably wouldn’t help his cause, but it was too late now. “I’m assuming you know about Sameer and the nuke. Do you have any chatter or information we can use to find him?”
Anders didn’t seem to mind the lack of pleasantries and followed Steve’s lead, getting right down to business. “Nothing. It’s like they disappeared and no one’s talking. We got the same results every other agency did. The last ping on Sameer was off your shoreline, and that’s it.”
He sounded cranky, like he hadn’t had his morning coffee, but Steve pressed on. “And there weren’t any ships he could have hidden on?”
“McGarrett, we’ve checked them all. The Coast Guard has been busy all night, I swear.”
“Didn’t the CIA have a guy working on the inside?” Steve pulled out the frying pan, cramming the phone between his shoulder and his ear.
“You know I can’t answer that.” His tone was flat and Steve could imagine his face. Anders was a by the book kind of guy and didn’t like it when anyone strayed beyond those rules. It wasn’t an effective strategy all the time, but Steve respected him for it.
“Okay, can we speak hypothetically? Do you have any way of getting inside information?” Steve leaned against the counter, knowing what he wanted Anders’ answer to be.
Steve took a deep breath. Did that mean "no" Anders wouldn’t speak hypothetically or "no" there’s no way of getting information? “So you’ve got nothing?”
“Well, we know where Sameer isn’t. That’s something.”
Steve could hear papers rustling in the background and knew their conversation and Anders' patience was coming to an end. “Thanks anyway, Anders. Let me know if anything comes up.”
“Don’t act like you’re going to wait for my call, McGarrett. I know I’ll be hearing from you in an hour.” He hung up.
Steve put his phone back in his pocket with a smile. Even though Anders acted all gruff and tough, he would help Steve out. He knew it. He got the scrambled eggs ready, making an extra big helping for Catherine. She needed food. And protein.
He went through his email while he was waiting for the food to finish, checking for any other new leads when his phone rang. After a glance at the caller ID, he quickly answered it, hoping for good news. “Danny, what’s going on?”
“I’m on my way over. You ready?”
“Yeah.” He glanced at the ceiling, hearing Catherine walking around. Within a few moments, the shower started.
“Steve? Earth to Steve. Is Catherine still there?”
“Yeah.” He took another bite of his late breakfast, trying to decide if he should wait down here for Catherine or give her some space.
Danny drew out the word. There was so much meaning behind it. Steve could hear Danny asking a million silent questions, but Steve wouldn’t go there. Not yet. “See you in a few.”
He finished making up the toast and left it on the table for her, buttered with jam, just how she liked it. It would probably feel like too much if he were sitting there waiting for her. And he needed another few minutes to decide how to ask her what was going on. I’m not running. I’m planning, he told himself. But he hated feeling unsure, especially about them. His relationship with her had once been the only thing he could count on. Leaving the plate, he walked outside. Maybe they both just needed a little space.
Heading to his favorite spot, he put on his jacket and tie and looked out over the ocean, different scenarios running through his mind. Hey, Cath, what are your plans? Or, I know you came back for the wedding, are you leaving when it’s over? But it wasn’t like he could ambush her with it the moment she came outside. He had to figure out a way to ease into it.
Danny got to the house in record time, interrupting his thoughts. Thankfully he guessed that Steve was thinking about Sameer and Steve let him. Catherine wasn’t something he could discuss. Not until he’d talked to her. He quickly brought up Charlie, offering to help pick up Gracie, anything to distract Danny from asking about Catherine. But when she walked out and interrupted Danny’s train of thought, everything Steve had contemplated saying to her went out of his mind. “Wow.”
“So you approve?” She pointed toward her dress and his mouth went dry.
He did more than approve. No matter what, she was always beautiful to him, whether she was in fatigues or fancy gowns. But this time she was seriously stunning. “Wow.” He very nearly reached out for her, but pulled his hands back at the last second.
“I’m going to let you two talk and maybe you’ll come up with more than one syllable. I’ll see you both at the wedding.” Danny waved goodbye and Steve hoped he could think of more than one syllable. It wasn’t looking good.
Catherine came close to him, touching his jacket lapels, before she looked up into his face. For just a moment the spark that had always been between them flared to life and it was as if they had never spent any time apart. “You look very, very, handsome,” she said, her voice low.
His hands ached to hold her, to touch her, but he kept them at his side. “Thank you. You, uh, you look beautiful.”
He looked down at her and knew the moment of truth had come. He looked back toward the house, then met her eyes. Just say it. “So, after the wedding, how long are you planning on staying?” He watched her face, hoping he could see a hint of her answer before she said it, to somehow prepare himself.
She didn’t meet his eyes at first and his ribcage tightened as he held his breath. Was this it? Were they over? Was she leaving again? “I don’t know.” She searched his face. “How long do you want me to stay?”
So many answers ran through his head in the space of a heartbeat. This was uncharted territory. He’d always gone with his gut, but right now his gut was warring with his head. He felt raw, exposed, and maybe even needing to protect himself. Yet, he’d never been afraid to put himself out there before. This was Catherine. She knew him better than almost anyone. But in this moment, he needed her to meet him halfway. He opened his mouth to tell her that, but he couldn’t get any words out before his phone rang.
“Saved by the bell.”
Steve groaned inwardly. He needed to tell her. Talk to her. Hear her answers. Hold her. Figure things out. But once again, he had to brush it all aside and answer his phone. More like the “bell” was slowly killing him. “McGarrett.”