By Peg Keeley
Darkness had deepened along the outside corridor of the tourist section
where the Mickey Kwann's casino was doing a brisk business. The van
was a tasteful brilliant blue and yellow with the words "Yank's
Plumbing: Let us flush away your problems blazed across the side."
It was grimy with a hub cap missing. A hula doll on a little spring
bobbled on the dashboard. It had been parked near the alley for about
thirty minutes. The young blonde haired workman got out, tool pouch
over his shoulder and walked unhurriedly towards the back of the building.
Once out of sight, he veered off into the side alley and hurried to
meet the black Lincoln that had just arrived.
"It's been a long time since we spent a humid night stuck in the
car," Williams remarked to McGarrett.
"Let's hope we don't spend the night now," the latter replied
from the driver's seat.
Richard, clad in the plumber's coverall, tapped nervously at the window,
leaving sweaty marks behind. As Steve lowered the glass, Richard announced.
"Caputo's here. Been here almost half an hour."
"What's he doing?"
"He's back in Kwann's office, shootin' the bull about mob politics."
"Really? I'm sure I will enjoy the tapes later," Steve said
dryly, hoping there might be something to hang Junior on there.
Richard licked his lips. "Team is ready. Didn't see any look outs."
Steve shook his head. "Oh, they are there, Richard. They've probably
already told Kwann you are over here talking to me."
Richard looked startled.
"Don't sweat it, Richard," Steve got out of the vehicle. "Tell
Louie it's a go."
Richard ran back into the alley speaking into his walkie-talkie as he
Steve and Danny walked leisurely down the front walk towards the club.
He grinned. "Lock and load."
There was a load crash as the lead police vice squad burst through the
front doors of Kwann's followed by DEA. The Five-0 team came last and
by the time they had cleared the entryway, there were the sounds and
angry and frightened patrons as the guests were herded away from tables
and against the far wall. Steve instantly recognized several prominent
citizens amongst the group. "Check everyone," he ordered Kono.
"But-" Richard, hearing it turned. He had also spotted the
congressman in the crowd.
"Everyone," Steve repeated coldly.
Kwann was standing in his office doorway, hands on his hips, shouting
at Gary. "Say! What is this! I run a clean place! I know my rights!
You can't do this!"
Garry slapped the warrant into Mickey's chest. "Read it and weep,
Kwann looked up to see McGarrett passing amongst the scattered chairs
and guests, headed right towards him. "As I live and breathe,"
"Kwann," Steve pushed past him and into the office stopping
in front of the desk where Junior reclined, feet on the desk smoking
his ever-present thin cigar. Steve cast a glanced back towards Kwann.
"I thought you said this was a clean place. I just found a pile
of real garbage."
Junior place the butt into the ash tray nonchalantly and rose. "Steve
McGarrett. It's a pleasure to meet you, too." He extended his hand
which Steve ignored. "Well," he smoothly retracted it, "you
are a true legend."
"Let's cut the crap, Caputo," McGarrett said coldly. "What
are you doing here? Planning your casino advisory board?"
He chuckled. "Why not?"
"Looks like the fox in charge of the hen house to me." Steve
rapped the desk with his knuckles. "This is going to be your only
warning, Junior. I will be keeping my eye on you. If you thought Max
Conner was making it hot, I am going to make you positively sizzle,
you got that?"
Junior grinned with false bravado. "Do whatever you like, McGarrett,
I got nothing to hide. I'm an honest man. Conner didn't find anything
and you won't either. This little - display - is just for looks. I know
"You are not wanted here," McGarrett declared. "And you
won't know just how much Conner or I have on you until it is too late.
We will nail you and this time I will see to it that there is no extradition
to Illinois where your crime family runs Juliette. I aim to keep you
right here on Oahu for life so I can stop by your cell and grin at you
from time to time."
Richard entered the room with two small packets of cocaine in his hand.
"All we found," he announced.
Steve wince internally at Richard's bluntness and obvious poor timing.
Junior laughed again, picked up the cigar and puffed it, exhaling a
gray cloud into the air. "Bad luck, huh boys?"
McGarrett churned within while outwardly remaining cool. "Who had
it?" he demanded of Richard.
"Girl at the roulette wheel," he replied meekly.
"Arrest her. And him." He pointed at Kwann.
Kwann started to protest and shout as Gary and Richard led him away.
Junior smiled and waved. "Thanks for the evening, Mickey!"
He straightened his suit. "Well, if you will excuse me, I'll be
on my way since my host as been - called out. Oh, that is unless you
would like me to wait for Loui Akauna so he can continue my surveillance."
With a sudden surge of violent rage that surprised everyone in the room,
Danny fairly leapt over the desk, grabbed Junior by the shirt collar
and slammed him backward into the wall. A framed pictured shattered
to the floor as the wood paneling shook. "You listen, you conceited
little punk. Your days are numbered. Showing up Daddy, huh? Maybe we
can help you really show him up. He managed to die an old man in prison
of a heart attack. Maybe we can arrange for you to burn instead. How
would that be?"
Junior tried to look calm and unaffected. "He speak for you, McGarrett?"
he managed to utter.
"Most definitely," Steve replied quietly, although he'd also
been surprised at the outburst.
Junior tugged his shirt free from Danny's grasp and gazed into Williams'
blazing eyes. "Well, Mr. Williams, you are making a gross miscalculation
that I will do something wrong. I never make mistakes. Never. Which
is, by the way, more than I can say for you. You'd best mind your own
little details or I shall press charges of assault and harassment."
He slid away from the wall and turned his back on Danny.
"Is that what Conner did to you? Did he turn is back?" Danny
Junior hesitated just a moment, but when he turned back there was a
confident smile on his face. "Conner? Oh, Max Conner. Is that what
this is about?" He looked at Steve. "You think I had something
to do with Conner? Please, why would I do something like that? I sincerely
wish him my best and a speedy recovery. But you should not be hasty
in your assumption that I might be the villain and be sure to follow
other leads as well."
"What other leads might those be?" Steve asked.
Junior managed a grin. "Well, I wouldn't know that now, McGarrett.
But if I overhear something I will most certainly call you."
Steve motioned Danny and the remaining officers towards the door. "Junior,"
he said in parting, "until we meet again. And we will meet again."
Junior gave a friendly wave and after they'd left noticed his cigar
had gone out. He attempted to light it, but his hands were shaking too
The white convertible rocketed
down the highway, the four boys hooting with reckless abandon.
"Can't wait to see the look on those 'Iwi o'po 'Ele'e'e," Mu
laughed. "We were in their auntie's house! We did 'em! Wela Ula has
the power! We are the power."
Ikaika spun the wheel and the car swerved off the highway onto the side
road headed back towards the beach. "Hey, Mu, we need to get the
drinks." He screeched to a halt in front of a convenience store.
Mu jumped over the door. "Be right back. Keep the engine running."
Ikaika turned on the radio and it boomed out a loud beat while they waited.
Lonnie was elated. No one will ever hurt me in school now. We have showed
those 'Iwi o'po 'Ele'e'e once and for all. No more trouble. Any memory
of responsibility for Audrey, homework, or anything else was long gone.
He was part of a group, he belonged to something special.
In just a few moments, Mu came dashing back to the car, again jumping
over the door, a six pack of beer in one hand, Coke in the other. "Make
tracks, Ikaika," he instructed, panting. He tossed the cold cans
into the back seat with BJ and Lonnie.
"Everything okay?" Ikaika murmured to Mu as they hot-rodded
back towards the beach.
"Old fool wouldn't give 'em to me," he remarked. "He called
me a punk." He rubbed his hands together.
BJ lifted his hand from the six pack of soda. "Yuck, what's on this?
"Here," Ikaika threw a rag over the seat. "Probably grease."
Lonnie gave a more critical look a the cans. "BJ, that's not grease
- it's blood."
Ikaika glanced at Mu. "What did you do, Bruddah?" he murmured
hotly. "I just did the gig of my life back there. You not gonna blow
it on me are you?"
Mu glared out of the windshiled flexing his jaw muscle, uncomfortable
that they were in the company of two of the youngest members, one very
new. This boy's allegiance is unknown. "I'll keep it under control,
Iakaika. No big thing." He turned to the rear occupants. "Koko,
the guy in the store was stupid; he'd cut himself before I got there.
He was just bleeding a little. No big deal."
Lonnie did not reply. His ecstasy just moments before, was crumbling into
a stomach wrenching fear. He glanced at BJ. "Did Mu steal this?"
BJ did not answer him.
The car turned off onto the crushed shell road the led past the cottage
and turned towards the beach.
For an instant, Lonnie was gripped with fear wondering if his father had
returned home, but sighed with relief when he saw the car was not in sight.
I need to get home before Dad does. What time is it anyway?
Ikaika brought the vehicle to a theatrical halt, sending plumes of sand
into the air was it slid onto the beach. The gang members who'd seen it
arrive cheered and ran to greet their partners.
Ikaika noticed that Lonnie's spirits seemed to have sobered. The other
boys grabbed canned drinks and ran off. Ikaika took Lonnie's elbow and
directed him towards the small camp fire that was now dimming due to lack
of attention in their absence. Ikaika bent down, picked up a small stick
and stirred up the embers. Sparks sailed skyward and mixed with the stars.
"Pretty, huh?" Ikaika said with a smile.
Lonnie nodded, a little surprised that this hulk of a gang member would
stop to notice nature.
"Koko, you wondering about those drinks," Ikaika commented.
He scowled. "Did Mu hurt the guy in the store?" He sounded as
if he was begging for it not to be so.
Mu, who had followed them over, crouched down. "Koko, this is life
- real life. Good and bad. You live in your pretty little house with your
haole papa and little cousin. And life is no problems, huh?"
Lonnie said nothing, wondering why he felt ashamed to have a good life.
"That man in the store, he was makin' trouble for me. I just wanted
to get some drinks for my guys, you know? He saw me and he didn't see
no brother, he saw a punk. He got scared. He wanted me outta his store.
I couldn't come back to the bruddahs with no drinks. Make me look bad,
Lonnie stood listening trying to make sense of what Mu was telling him.
"I didn't have no chance, Koko. He say I was a punk kid, he called
me a punk. I just tried to pay him and he pushed me. He pushed me like
this." He shoved Lonnie in the chest and the smaller boy stumbled
back a step. "That don't feel good, you know? I feeling mad now.
I pushed back. Just once, but that old crazy man hit his head. Bang, just
like that." He smacked his hand to the side of his head. "He
felt down. I didn't steal nothing. I left the money on the counter and
"Was he okay?" Lonnie mumbled through tight lips.
Mu nodded. "I think so. I didn't hang around for him to jump up and
yell for cops."
Lonnie shook his head. "Well, the police would understand, Mu. You
should not have run."
Ikaika made a wry expression. "What you been smokin', boy? Your haole
dad tell you that one, too? We Hawaiian, Koko. Cops not gonna believe
us over that white man. They'd put Mu back in jail just as sure as spit
Mu glanced at Ikaika.
Lonnie bit the inside of his lip. Back in jail? Mu's been in jail before?
He felt so filled with dread he could barely breathe.
"You see that, don't you, Koko?" Ikaika was asking, watching
"I guess so," he answered, but it was clear he did not.
Ikiaka frowned.This kid is gonna snitch. He'll go running right home to
daddy and spill it all. I planned that house job for a month. I can't
have some little kid messin' it up. I've just gotta keep him quiet till
I figure out how to get the goods outta here. "Koko, you are a brother
now. You are part of us - one of us. You in now and you remember that.
What happens to one happens to all."
Lonnie did not miss the subtle change in the tone from providing an explanation
for convincing to a warning of retribution.
Ikaika picked up an orange that lay amongst the food by the campfire.
He slowly began to squeeze it in his large fist until the skin burst ,the
pulp squished out between his fingers and the juice ran down his arms.
"If you're thinking about singing for daddy - you remember this orange."
He shoved it at Lonnie. "We are brothers, Koko, blood brothers to
the death. There is no getting out for you now. We live or die together.
You want to be safe? You want your haole teacher papa and your little
kaukini haole safe? Then you remember this orange. Bad things happen to
Mu, we gonna come for you."
It was late. Danny had wanted to get home
early enough to spend some time with Lonnie and Audrey, but nothing had
gone smoothly. Steve's angry words still echoed in his head.
"What did you think you were doing in there?"
Danny had hung his head. "Sorry, Steve. I just could not stand to
see him so smug - so sure of himself."
"We can't afford the emotion, Danno. I'm going to pull you out."
"Steve, you can't!"
"I have to! I can hear the Governor now. I can't even give a good
explanation for why you were there. Tell me - what's to stop Junior from
bringing charges against you for threatening him?"
"He can - and he might. Please, Danno, this is the way it has to
"Kono and Gary will both be out tomorrow for Grandma Tutu's arrangements.
Loui is babysitting Caputo. Who's going to go to Maui?" Danny asked.
"It won't be you."
"You'd send Richard?"
Steve had paused. "He's not so bad."
"I know what he's capable of, Steve. And he is not good at interviewing
people like Gordon Mack."
Steve sighed and issued a small smile. "If I send you to Maui at
least you won't be beating up Junior Caputo."
He left Steve and returned to the KOAH news
studio, hoping to catch Carrie before the late news. What he caught was
the footage the producer was inserting from the clients of Mickey Kwann's
club who were complaining bitterly about police brutality and scare tactics.
"Good stuff, Danny," Carrie commented to him as she turned off
"You aren't really gonna run that crap," he grumbled.
"I don't decide; my producer decides - but I think it's news, too."
"It is garbage - pure hype engineered by Caputo to make Five-0 look
bad," he argued.
"Really?" She remarked. "Looks like you did a fair job
of that yourself."
He stared at her, anger swelling within him. I don't need this. "I
just stopped by to see how you were. Good night, Carrie." He turned
on his heel and left.
"Danny!" She chased after him across the studio catching him
near the blue screen backdrop that the weather man used. "I'm sorry.
I really didn't mean that."
He turned. "Yes, you did. And you know what? You were right."
"It's just - Danny I thought you weren't with Five-0 anymore. What
were you doing there?"
He turned to face her. "Carrie, I can't begin to explain it. Look,
things are all upset. Steve needs help from people he can trust right
now and it doesn't look like there are very many of them."
She was standing close to him. "Sounds like he doesn't trust some
other people around him. Why is that?"
He sighed. "Are you Carrie-the-Newswoman right now?"
It was her turn to stop. "Yeah, I guess I am," she whispered
sheepishly. "I guess I'm sorry, too. Look, I want to thank you for
- you know - everything today."
"I was glad to," he replied. They were even closer now, faces
only inches apart.
"Can we get together again?" she whispered.
"I'd like to," he replied and leaned slightly forward to brush
a kiss across her lips. He looked into her eyes, looking for response.
Her lips again met his with determination and they stood embraced for
There was a whistle. "Hey, guys! I've gotta set the lights for the
late news and you're steaming up my lenses!" the stage manager called
from the wings.
They jumped apart like high school kids, both blushing and grinning.
I've gotta go," Danny apologized.
"Later," Carrie replied and turned away towards makeup.
Thirty minutes later, Danny slowed the car
for the turnoff from the highway and as he did, a white convertible shot
out from road down to the cottage and turned onto the highway. Not many
cars came up that road. The only things down there were the cottage and
the beach. Danny smiled to himself. Some kid and his girl found my quiet
beach tonight. Vi va le amour.
Danny made a tired trip up the short steps to the cottage and opened the
door. It was nearly eleven, but Lonnie sat at the kitchen table before
his art research paper. Danny handed him Steve's art history book.
"Thanks, Dad," Lonnie mumbled, not looking up.
Danny sensed something was wrong, but could not put a finger on what.
"Everything all right, Lonnie?"
"Uh-huh," he responded putting down the pen. If I look at Dad
he will read right through me. He'll know something is going on. What
do I do? "How is Max?" He hoped changing the subject would work.
"Doing a little better. He can't talk or anything, but he'd been
awake today." Danny got a Coke from the fridge. "Want a soda?"
"No thanks," he murmured, and closed his notebook. "I'd
better get to bed." He escaped back to his room.
"Good night, Lonnie." Danny sat down on the couch to drink his
soda. Lonnie sure is quiet. I guess all this must be having an impact
on him, too. He knows Max pretty well. I need to take a few minutes with
him and let him talk. Yesterday he was angry, I never really knew what
that was about. And today he did not seem very happy about Carrie being
here. What does he think? I guess I don't know what he thinks. I'll make
a point to talk with him tomorrow.
Steve did not think he'd slept much. The couch in the Five-0 office was
no softer than it had ever been, but still served it's purpose as a place
to sleep lightly while his mind worked on the facts and intuition about
what had happened. He had little doubt that Junior had had some role in
Max's shooting, but Max's notebook never included anything about a late
night meeting with anyone. Why not? Was Max afraid of anyone knowing?
What were they to talk about? What did they talk about? Is Max hiding
something or can he really not remember? Steve worried that somehow things
might be twisted to implicate Max in something illegal. Would it matter
now? He is no longer a threat. There is a police guard stationed in the
hospital, but I don't think his attacker will be back. The job has beeen
accomplished. Max will not head Five-0 again. What happens next?
.."They told me you'd be here, but I wasn't sure," came
a painfully cheerful young female voice.
Steve rolled off the couch blinking awake. "Ling Fong?"
"Good morning, Steve," she said happily. Ling Fong had the same
dedication to forensics as her father before her. She now stood at 6:30
in the morning with a small box in her hands. "I have some good news
for you, Steve."
"Thank you, Ling, I could use some good news," he admitted and
headed to start the coffee.
"It's about Mrs. Kalakauna's death."
Coffee forgotten, he focused solely on Ling. "Go ahead."
She pulled out a latex glove. "Officers found this near her home.
On the outside are particles of wood that match the stick you brought
us. On the inside are prints that match Bruno Luccio." She showed
him a photo.
Steve glared at the mug shot of Bruno. "Not an Islander."
She shook her head. "I contacted the mainland for you, there should
be something faxed to you pretty soon."
In less than an hour, Steve had confirmed
that Bruno had connections to the Caputos.
"Want me to get an APB out?" Richard asked excitedly.
"Let's find him and keep him watched," Steve replied. "Bruno
is the small fish. I want his boss. We can take Bruno down for Mama Tutu,
but I want the whole thing here. Show his picture to the car rental people,
let's see what that shows up."
The door opened and Danny entered. "Morning, Steve."
Richard looked a little surprised, but made no comment. He accepted the
photo and left.
"I'm off to Maui," Danny told Steve.
Steve handed him the portfolio with information on Gordon Mack. "Happy
An HPD detective came to the door. "Excuse me, Mr. McGarrett."
"Yes?" Steve replied.
"I'm sorry. I mean, I know you have a lot on your mind, but - well,
Mr. Conner had wanted us to report gang crime to him for followup."
He offered a video tapes. "Last night out near Kapienoi Point. Kamaka
"I know the place," Danny offered.
"Well, the place was robbed last night. The owner, a little old guy
named Tooly Goomaka was running it. They beat him up; he died this morning."
Steve scowled as he accepted the video from the store's camera.
"Camera got the whole thing," the officer added. "Kid was
wearing gang colors of the Wela Ulna."
"Pretty brash - or crazy right in front of a camera," Danny
"Well, the kid probably didn't know the camera was there. Old Tooly
just installed it a couple of weeks ago. He wanted it to keep away the
crime - just it didn't help much."
"Well," Steve sighed. "At least it will catch his killer.
What was the take?"
"Two six packs."
"What?" Steve replied in indignation. "He killed a man
over two six packs?" He took the video to the tape machine. "What
kind of a world are we running here?"
Danny came close to view the tape. "I wasn't aware we were in charge."
They watched the black and white film run, showing a young man enter the
store, argue with the man working the counter, then start hitting the
man. The old man fell. It seemed less real somehow on this tape, but no
less tragic. As the young man turned to leave the store, he turned and
full face view. Steve froze the spot. "There's our man. Get down
to Department of Transportation, Danno. See if they can match him to a
"I thought I was going to Maui," he commented.
He hesitated, wondering if he should remind Steve he had no legal authority
to ask for anything from DOT or anyone else.
McGarrett glanced back at him. "Consider yourself deputized, now
As Danny left, the FAA official entered the office. "You boys get
started early," the man commented.
McGarrett gave a slight smile. "We try."
"My report on the chopper accident." He handed it to Steve.
"You could have mailed that."
"I could have, but I wanted to talk to you."
"Have a seat."
The man accepted the chair and a cup of coffee. "This chopper scene
is a toughie, but with a death involved, we need to ascertain if we are
looking at an accident or a murder. I can't find anything to clearly indicate
foul play, let alone clues to the killer, but
" he hesitated
with a slight shrug. "
it just feels wrong."
Steve waited for the officer to continue.
"I know this wasn't accident or pilot error. He could not have maneuvered
that craft so well in order to get his passenger into the dumpster if
it was pilot error. Accident - well maybe, but that fire was so hot -
yet the fuel tanks intact. Incendiaries have a burn signature, so it wasn't
a bomb. Whoever did this was clever and smart enough to know things like
bomb chemicals could be traced."
"Then you are convinced it was murder?" Steve asked.
He nodded. "Someone wanted that craft down, but I don't have a motive
or a cause."
Steve's gaze drifted to the devil stick. Just the same. No tangible evidence
of foul play against Mama Tutu, just an ordinary stick. "Thank you
for your help."
He sighed. "I'm afraid I haven't been much help. We'll keep looking
at the wreckage, but I'm not sure what we will get."
Richard stuck his head inside the door, blinked upon seeing Steve had
company. "Call from HPD. Grand theft case out in Wamiuah. You need
to see this."
The FAA officer rose. "Sounds like you have your hands full. I'll
be going." He and Steve shook hands.
Richard waited for the officer to leave. "Got a call about six o'clock.
Mrs. Dorothy Witherton reported a break-in last night. They skipped the
stereo, TV, even her wallet and went right for her kruggerands."
"Kruggerands?" Steve scowled.
"She has a stash of gold kruggerands in a small box on her dresser.
Almost a quarter of a million dollaers worth."
Steve could not believe his ears. "She kept a quarter of a millions
dollars on her dresser in a box?"
He shrugged. "Sounds crazy to me, too. Somebody knew she had them.
Funny thing, they were able to deactivate her alarm system - from inside
"She said the system has been faulty, a key would have tripped it.
We found a large plastic pipe that had been installed for her guests at
the pool to drop their wet towels directly to the basement. It's about
fourteen inches across but a small kid could get through it. And one did.
There are foot prints in the basement dust." He showed a photo of
a bare foot print. "Kid slides down the tube, cancels the alarm,
then steals the gold coins. Neat and tidy."
Steve folded his arms. "A child that small isn't going to go after
Kruggerands. Someone else master-minded this and used a child to do the
dirty work. Does Mrs. Witherton have a list of people who know she has
"Working on that," Richard commented.
When the bell rang to signal the end of classes,
Lonnie collected his books, looking cautiously around as the rest of his
classmates thronged towards the exits. Just yesterday I thought all my problems
were over. Everything was going to be better -- now it is worse than ever.
All I have to do is stay quiet and it will be okay. Mu said he paid for
the sodas, so he didn't really steal them. Do I believe that? He had to
admit to himself he did not. And what about that blood? Did the guy fall
and hurt himself or did Mu hurt him? I can't even tell Dad this one. What
Lonnie spent the whole day at school looking over his shoulder the whole
time, not certain of whom he was afraid. The Skulls were not of concern
any longer. He had hoped there would be talk about how the Wela Ula had
stolen something from the 'Iwi o'po 'Ele'e'e , but there was nothing.
He met BJ at lunch.
"You okay?" Lonnie asked BJ as he placed his lunch tray on the
BJ shrugged. "Sure, why shouldn't I be?"
"I thought maybe-" he stopped talking. "Did you hear anything
about what we took from that 'Iwi o'po kid's house?"
"Sssh," BJ whispered urgently. "You want someone to hear?"
Lonnie was confused. "I thought Mu wanted the 'Iwi o'po to know
BJ made face. "Not now."
Lonnie leaned closer. "BJ, did you hear any more about that guy at
"You know. The guy who got mean with Mu-"
"I don't know anything about that," BJ said sharply. "And
neither do you. You remember Hank and that chain?" He poked Lonnie's
still bruised ribs. "You make noise and you aren't gonna be bruised,
you'll be broken into little pieces. Brothers know when to protect their
own - and when to shut up. You better learn quick." He picked up
an orange from his lunch tray and handed it to Lonnie with a determined
look. "I think you need this more than me."
He pushed through the exit, and hurried up the sidewalk towards the bus
parking area, looking for Audrey as he went. Maybe if I just don't do anything
this will go away. The Skulls won't mess with me and if I keep quiet, the
Wela Ula will see me as a loyal brother. I'll just not do anything anymore.
But what if they come again and ask me to do something?
Audrey spotted Lonnie from across the yard. She burst into a smile and ran
to him. "Don't forget to hide your silly red cloth before we get home,"
she teased. "Maybe I'll tell Danny tonight."
Just what I need! Blackmail from a eight year old! "Audrey!" he
She giggled and darted away from him, towards the parked buses.
He sprinted after her.
Just as Audrey reached the sidewalk near the lot, a passing car slowed.
There was a flash of sun reflecting off metal in the rear window, then a
Audrey went limp in mid-stride, her momentum carrying her forward so that
when she hit the ground, she rolled several times.
The car accelerated, burning rubber as it fled.
Students were screaming, running, some throwing themselves on the ground,
adults were shouting, snatching up other children. Utter panic broke out.
Lonnie, in stunned horror, grabbed Audrey, screaming for help as blood began
to stain the front of her flowered T-shirt.
A teacher attempted to take Audrey, but Lonnie was hysterical, and it took
three adults to wrestle her away from him.
There were approaching sirens, the Principal was shouting orders to teachers
and staff as children were herded towards the building. The PE coach continued
to restrain Lonnie as two other teachers tried to control Audrey's bleeding.
Lonnie kept wailing, eyes shut, seeing only the moment that the gun metal
had reflected sunlight and the flash from the car window--and the glimpse
of red cloth.
Steve stood with Danny watching Mu pace the interrogation room of HPD through
the one-way glass. "Found him right away," Danny announced, showing
Steve Mu's driver's license that bore the name John Packer. "Picked
him up at home sleeping."
"Did he say anything?" Steve asked.
"That he wanted a lawyer, that we had the wrong guy, that he'd get
"Get even with who?" Steve ask casually.
"Koko, whatever that is. Some kid in his gang."
Steve entered the room and stood solid and imposing before the young Hawiian.
Mu turned, angry and sullen. "That my haole name."
"That is also your legal name," Steve added quietly. "Did
the officers tell you why you were brought here?"
He shook his head no.
"Why do you think?"
"Cops don't need no reason." Mu flexed his muscles slowly. "You
got my lawyer yet?"
"He's coming. You know you don't have to talk to us, John, but if you
do if may go easier for you," Steve advised.
"Easier than what?"
"Were you at the Kalama convenience store last night?"
"Did you see Tooly Goomaka?"
Tooly is dead, Packer. I have evidence that you killed him. Open and shut.
"I swear I'll get that Koko kid. My brothers know about this, McGarrett.
They already know. The blood will flow."
"Who's Koko?" Steve asked.
Mu snorted and looked away.
There was a light rap at the door and Danny opened it.
Richard stuck his head inside. "Danny, can I speak to you out here?"
He looked unusually frantic.
Danny walked into the hall, pulling the door shut. "What's up?"
Richard stammered. "Cook Elementary...a drive-by shooting..."
"Oh my God," Danny gasped, going pale. Stark panic washed over
him and he tried to maintain his composure.
Richard got some more out. "Audrey--she must have been in the way --
they're taking her to Children's."
Danny and Steve ran through the electric door into the receiving area of
Children's Hospital. No adults ever came through those doors looking anything
but panicked and the two men were no exception. The staff always knew when
a parent was on the way and were waiting to meet them.
Before Danny could even get the question out, a nurse was offering what
limited answers she had. "Audrey is already in surgery," the women
explained calmly. "She was shot once in the chest. The doctors were
able to stabilize her quickly. It is very hopeful. I need some insurance
information from you, but let me first take to you the waiting area and
let you catch your breath."
Danny managed a nod, but nothing more. How could this happen? Why did this
happen? She's just a little girl. I brought her here to Hawaii to keep her
safe, to help her grow up. How could this happen?
The nurse led them to an elevator and up to the third floor where a colorful
clown painted on the wall grinned a greeting at them as they stepped out.
The waiting room was decorated in soft tones, quiet music playing and a
silent TV staring at them from the corner. Stuffed teddies and bunnies were
scattered around. Sitting, huddled on the couch, knees to his chin and arms
wrapped around his legs, was Lonnie, looking exhausted and numb.
"Lonnie," Danny said, surprised that he had thought nothing about
his son since the news of Audrey's shooting.
Lonnie looked up at them without emotion. There was blood on the front of
his shirt and under his fingernails. "Audrey was shot," he whispered,
tears brimming his eyes.
Danny sat down next to him. "It will be all right, you'll see."
He put an arm around Lonnie's shoulders. "What happened? Did you see
He stared at the floor. "She just ran to the bus."
"Did you see anything?" he repeated. "Did you hear anything?
See a car? A person? Anything?"
Lonnie just stared at him. How do I tell him what I saw? It's my fault.
How do I tell my Dad that?
"Danno," Steve touched Danny's arm. "Let it be for now."
Danny tried to be silent. I have got to do something. I can't just sit here.
What is happening? I need to get some answers here. "Lonnie,"
he said again, trying to sound gentle, "we can get whoever did this
if you can just tell me what you remember."
Lonnie looked past Danny, overwhelmed by fear and guilt. He squeezed the
red bandana in his pocket. He did not understand why himself.
Steve motioned Danny outside into the hallway. "Danno, he needs your
support right now, not questions. It can wait for now."
"How can you say that?" Danny demanded. "Every minute counts!
Whoever shot her is running free---" He stopped. "Of course,"
he whispered. "It has to be."
"Be what?" Steve asked him.
"Junior. Last night he told me to watch my 'little details.' This is
his doing!" Danny was lost in fury and revenge. "We've got to
take this bastard down!"
Steve grabbed him by both arms. "Danno." He tried to remain calm
in hopes to calm Danny. He may be right. What if he is right? Grandma Tutu,
the helicopter, now this. He had a hard time seeing Caputo as foolish enough
to risk a school shooting. No profit. Nevertheless.... "We need to
be calm here, Danno. We need the evidence. We need to be able to prove this."
Danny tried to nod. "Steve, if she dies.....I'll kill him. I swear
I'll kill him." This is just like Lani all over again. Caputo attacked
the one most defenseless. I will kill him.
Richard stared at the files on his desk,
feeling very helpless. The whole office is somewhere else, all being distracted
away by very real personal tragedies. Kono and Gary are preparing Tutu,
mother and grandmother, for her burial. Williams and McGarrett are pacing
the floor of Children's waiting the outcome of Audrey. Louie is with the
surveillance team on Caputo. He gazed out into the larger office where
Ginny sat at her desk completing paperwork. I'm the only one here. What
if something goes down? What will I do? I know McGarrett doesn't like
me. I guess right now that doesn't matter very much. I just don't want
to screw things up. I've always felt like I did not belong on a team like
Five-0. I know they don't think I belong here.
There was the sound of the outer door opening and Ginny looked up with
a smile. "I can't believe it!" she announced cheerfully, "It
is so good to see you."
"I thought it might be a good idea to stop by."
Richard was already on his feet and headed out of his cubicle having recognized
the voice. "Duke Lukela?"
The former officer stood in casual aloha shirt, a grin on his face, supported
by the cane in his left hand that had been a constant companion since
his shooting eight years earlier. "Good afternoon, Richard. I heard
about Tutu and Audrey. Thought you might want -- an extra hand."
Richard was already pulling out a chair. "Don't be so shy, Lukela.
I can use all the help I can get."
"How's Danny doing?"
"McGarrett is with him."
"And where are you on the investigation?" Luke lowered himself
into the chair.
Richard began to explain the missing casing, the car, the tire track as
the phone rang and Ginny answered it. "Richard," she interrupted
him. "It's about a rented caddy."
Minutes later, Duke accompanied Richard as the small Mercury sped out
towards the airport. The manager of the Avis rental was waiting for them.
"I recognized the man's face."
"Which man?" Richard asked.
He pointed to Bruno Luccio's photo. Brought the car back early yesterday
morning. Was supposed to have kept it for a week. Said it was dirty. He
wanted another car."
"Did you rent him another?"
He shook his head. "He wasn't satisfied with any of them."
"And the car?" Duke asked.
"Well, you all are in a little luck there. My cleaning team was short
two people. It's out on the back lot just as he returned it." The
manager pointed to the car.
Richard ran to the car and snatched up his radio. "Dispatch, I want
Fong and her team out to Avis at the airport right away." He and
Luke walked over to the vehicle, careful to touch nothing. "Frustrating
to just stand here," Richard grumbled.
"Patience is a large part of it," Duke counseled him.
Minutes later, Ling Fong and her group were going through the car, lifting
prints, checking for obvious things before arranging for it to be sent
to the lab where it would be disassembled. She turned, her pretty asian
face aglow. "Here's something for you boys." She held a 9mm
casing in her tweezers.
Richard's face lit up. "Let's go get the little bastard."
"Easy does it," Luke reminded him. "You don't want Bruno
Luccio, you want Junior Caputo."
"But Bruno shot Max!" Richard nearly shouted.
Luke shook his head. "Did he? He rented the car. The car was at the
scene; that doesn't put him in the car. We need the gun. A witness would
be even better."
"Witness?" Richard asked.
Duke gave a knowing smile as he turned towards their car. "Yes, a
Richard shrugged. "Where do I find a witness at two o'clock in the
"Who is on the streets at that hour?" Duke finished getting
into the car and pulled the door shut.
"Pimps and drug addicts," Richard muttered. "Not very reliable."
"Then we had better start questioning pimps and drug addicts,"
The sun had set and the moon risen by the time the surgeon slowly made
his way up the hallway. He was still dressed in his scrubs, the paper
mask dangling from his neck, the paper shoe covers causing him to shuffle
his feet on the slick tile flooring. When he reached out to shake Danny's
hand there was still powder from the sterile gloves on his hands. "Courageous
little girl there, Mr. Williams."
"How is she?" Danny asked, cutting to the issue at hand.
"It was a serious injury, but we were able to stop the bleeding,
do repairs. The bullet took a little nick out of her liver, pierced her
stomach. Fortunately, it was not close to her heart. Now we wait."
"Wait for what?" Danny asked.
The doctor sighed. He hated it when families made him spell it all out.
"She is in deep shock. Everything is doing what it should, but her
reflexes are slow. It is probably just anesthesia, but I am keeping her
in ICU until we have her alert. I am sure you understand."
Danny managed a nod. Do I understand? No, I don't understand any of this.
He struggled to contain his emotions.
The doctor gestured him towards the hallway. "You can see her for
a few minutes if you would like."
Danny allowed himself to be led towards the small cubicle, not even aware
McGarrett was with him. He uttered a small gasp upon seeing the small
girl, her golden curls spread out across the pillow, skin pale, nearly
translucent, her eyes gently closed as if in sleep. She looks so peaceful
, like a fairy tale princess. So innocent, so helpless, defenseless. How
could this happen? How could I let this happen? He nearly lost his composure
as rage and sorrow wrestled for his mind. Fighting back the fury in his
mind and the tears in his eyes, he slipped a hand around her small one.
There was no response.
Steve knew Danny was overwhelmed by the moment and could also feel the
helplessness and empathize with the emotion. Steve had been here before
and felt the fear, the pain, anger, and sorrow. He touched Danny's shoulder.
"I'll see if Lonnie wants to come in." Steve walked back out
to the waiting room where Lonnie sat straight-backed on the couch, staring
out of the window at the moon.
Lonnie remembered the full moon of last night, the feelings of joy and
comradeship; the euphoria of belonging and being wanted. Now it all seemed
to shallow. What have I done? Somehow this is my fault. What if she dies?
It wasn't supposed to be this way. They were nice to her. She wanted to
make shell necklaces with Hannah. Why did this happen? Every time he closed
his eyes he could still see the car window, the flash of metal, and something
red flapping. Was it the Wela Ula? Why? They were supposed to be my friends.
They were supposed to protect us. Maybe it was the Skulls pretending to
be Scarves. Is that possible? What will I tell Dad? How can I ever live
"Lonnie," Steve said gently, sitting down next to him. "How
are you doing?"
Lonnie dragged his attention back to where he was and shrugged, still
staring out of the window. "Why is this happening?" he asked.
Steve raised an eyebrow and put an arm around the boy's shoulders. "I
don't have any answers for you."
"Is she going to be okay?"
"I think so. It will still take some time." Steve allowed silence
to fill the gap for several minutes, waiting for Lonnie to say more. At
last he added. "Would you like to visit Audrey?"
His eyes widened. "I can't go in there. You won't make me, will you?"
"There's nothing to be afraid of, Lonnie. She just looks like she's
That's what they said about BJ's Dad when he died last year! Maybe she
is going to die! "I don't want to," Lonnie murmured, feeling
ashamed as he said it.
"That's all right," Steve agreed. "Would you like to go
home and get out of those clothes? Get some sleep?"
Lonnie fingered his blood-spattered shirt and shrugged.
"Come on, I'll get you a burger, too."
They rose and walked to the elevator. "I feel so awful," Lonnie
"It isn't your fault," Steve said firmly. "You were there.
It was a very scary experience and we can talk about it when you want
to. But you did not make this happen."
The elevator doors shut them away into the little car. "You ever
feel this way?" Lonnie asked.
Steve nodded. "Yes, I have. And I couldn't stop the feelings either."
First the first time in several years he was reliving the dreadful afternoon
in the Royal Surf parking lot. He remembered the discussion after Danny's
trip to New York. The pivotal event had taken on a newer, less painful
meaning -- but it would always remain. "Did your Dad ever tell you
about the day he got shot in the back so long ago."
Lonnie stared at the floor of the elevator. "His on-off scar. Yeah,
he's told me."
"Did he ever tell you why it happened?"
Lonnie looked up to meet Steve's eyes shaking his head no. Will Uncle
Steve have the reason why for Audrey's shooting?
"It was a bullet aimed at me. It took me a long time to stop feeling
guilt about it, but it was not my fault. We were both in the wrong place
at the wrong time. Like you and Audrey today. You were in the wrong place
at the wrong time." God, I hope this is true! If Caputo is responsible
for this, I will never forgive myself for not insisting Danny get police
protection for the children.
The doors opened to the lobby. Lonnie's mind was turning over what Steve
had said. What if the guy who shot Audrey meant to shoot me? Why? Do they
think I'd snitch on Mu? I gave my word! They were trying to shoot me and
missed. This really is my fault. "What did you do?" Lonnie asked.
Steve squeezed the boy's shoulder. "We got through. We will this
End Part 6
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