Time Heals All Wounds
“I can’t believe I have to sneak around to see my own daughter,” Steve spat as he watched Sophie play on the sand with her toys. “Even worse, I have to bring you in the middle of all this.”
“I tried talking to her but she’s too stubborn,” Savannah said as she looked at Steve. “All I got her to agree to was that she would think about talking to you.”
Steve shook his head as he glanced briefly at Savi before returning his gaze to his daughter. “She’s going to have to talk to me whether she wants to or not. It’s been a week, Savi, a whole damn week and I haven’t heard from her. The only way I’m seeing my daughter is because you make-up some lie to take her out. Tell me, what excuse did you use this time?”
Savi shrugged. “I told her I wanted to take Kelly shopping and asked if I could bring Sophie along.”
Savi was worried about Mia and Steve could see something was troubling her. “What’s going on, Savi? I can see there’s something else.”
Savi sighed and ran a hand over her face as she debated whether to tell Steve her worries regarding Mia. Savi knew she would be betraying her best friend’s trust but she also knew the only one who could make Mia see reason was Steve. She prayed Mia would understand why Savi was doing what she was about to do. “Mia is probably on her way to the governor’s office as we speak, if she isn’t already there.”
“Why?” Steve asked confused but it suddenly dawned on him. “Don’t tell me she’s…”
Savi finished Steve’s throught with a nod. “Mia is quitting, Steve. She’s turning in her badge.”
Steve mumbled a few expletives as he ran a hand through his hair in frustration. “Why? I mean, she’s giving up her whole career, everything she worked so hard to get, for no reason?”
“She’s scared, Steve, so she’s not thinking clearly. Everything is catching up to her and Sophie’s kidnapping was the last straw, not to mention killing her mother.”
“I was scared too, Savi, and do you see me giving up everything? I know she blames me for everything but if she’s trying to guilt trip me, she better think again. I am not going to feel guilty for everything I have done to keep my family safe, and that includes her and Sophie. I’m tired, Savi, I’m tired of everything,” Steve finally said. “If Mia wants her freedom back then I am not going to be in the way of that.”
Savi whirled her head around to look at Steve. “Please tell me you’re not giving up on Mia.” When Steve wouldn’t answer, Savi became increasingly worried. “Steve, please answer me.”
“What do you want me to say, Savi?” Steve asked softly, a sign that he was indeed tired. “Ever since I found Mia in that hospital, there’s been nothing but fights and I’m tired of everything. Maybe the best thing was to have let her go from the beginning when I saw her in the governor’s office. I admit I was selfish because I loved her and I wanted us to be together. I wanted a second chance at what we once had but I don’t know if I want to continue like this.”
Mia got home to an empty house, except for the hired help. She was exhausted. Her luck in finding an apartment was not on her side today. She was about to head upstairs when the doorbell rang. Mia knew the housekeeper would answer it but Mia was closer to the door so she went ahead and opened it. The moment she opened the door, Mia knew she should have let the housekeeper open it.
“Mia,” he said in a faint whisper when he saw who opened the door. “It’s true.”
Mia froze with her hand on the door handle as she stared at the man standing in front of her. “Peter,” she said in an uneven tone. Mia was torn between running into his arms or slamming the door on his face. After all, she still hated him for walking out on her and lying for many years. Her internal debate was cut short when Peter pulled her into his arms and hugged her tightly.
“When I heard, I just couldn’t believe it,” he murmured pressing his lips on top of her head. “It’s really you.” He put her at arms length, studying her from top to bottom, making sure he wasn’t hallucinating.
“In the flesh,” Mia responded in a choked tone. Despite everything, Mia was glad to see Peter. After all, he had been her best friend and support for all those years she spent away from the island. Her eyes had tears threatening to spill over but she cleared her throat and tried speaking again. “Who told you I was here?”
Peter simply stared at Mia trying to sink in the fact that his daughter was alive when he realized she was talking to him. He cleared his throat and gave her a genuine smile. “Your friend, Savanna. She called me.”
Mia rolled her eyes. “Figures,” she muttered. “Since you’re already here why don’t you come in.”
Peter followed Mia into the house, closing the door behind him, and into the living room. “You’re going to have to excuse me if I’m staring, but it’s just so, everything is unbelievable.” Peter sat on the opposite side of the couch where Mia sat with her feet tucked under her body and her arms wrapped across her stomach.
“What are you doing here Peter? Why did Savanna call you?” Mia asked wanting to know what was going on behind Peter’s presence.
Peter sighed as he scratched his left eyebrow with his left hand. “Savanna is worried about you,” he began. “She thinks you’re making a huge mistake leaving Steve and trying to take Sophie away from him.”
Mia’s jaw tightened in annoyance and looked away. “I can’t believe she is doing this. What are you going to do? Tell me how I’m making the biggest mistake of my life and that I shouldn’t make a drastic decision?” By now Mia was looking straight into Peter’s eyes. “Because I’ve heard it all already.”
Peter raised a hand to signal Mia to stop. “I’m not here to tell you what to do. I’m the least indicated person to do that, but-”
“Exactly, so what are you doing here?” Mia demanded as she bolted from the couch and walked to the opposite side of the room turning to face Peter. “It seems that after all we are more alike than we thought, right dad. Except I didn’t walk away from my responsibilities. I am trying to protect my daughter.”
Peter stood up to be at eye level with Mia. “You’re right, you have every right to be angry at me but we are not here to discuss what I did wrong because there is nothing I can do to change that. On the other hand, you still have the chance to keep your family together, Mia. You have a man who loves you, who has been there through the toughest moments of your life, and a daughter you both love. Don’t be so foolish to let that go. Are you really giving up a career and the man you love to live in fear for the rest of your life? Because let me tell you something, that is not the Mia I know, the Mia I trained to withstand every obstacle that came her way. Where else can Sophie be safer than with the two people who love her the most.” Peter paused for a second to gauge Mia’s reaction to everything he was saying. He could see the doubts in her eyes but before she had a chance to rebuke anything he said, he continued. “Go on, Mia, go on and give up your career. Take Sophie with you and live every day of your life looking over your shoulder, wondering when the next attack will come. Just don’t say we didn’t warn you when Sophie grows up and resents you for ripping her away from her father.”
By now Mia had let a few tears escape from her eyes. “Even if I stay with Steve, I’ll always be fearing the next attack. Tell me how is that any different. Sophie will understand when I tell her it was for her own safety.”
Peter shook his head in resignation. “You’re not giving yourself or Steve enough credit, Mia.”
“I killed my mother, my own mother. I’m afraid I’ll end up hating him for what I did, for what Sophie went through. I’m afraid I’m already hating him and I don’t want to hate him. I love him too much to allow that. I don’t want what happened to overshadow all the good times. That’s why it’s best if I walk away now.”
“You’re not even giving yourself or Steve a chance to talk things out. I can’t believe I’m saying this but here it is. Steve is a great man. I may have not seen it before but ever since you two got back together he has proven over and over again how much he loves you. Hell, I’ve already forgiven him for not calling me as soon as he found you because I understand what his priority was. You.”
“What can Steve and I agree on? I can’t ask him to leave everything behind and run to a place where WoFat can’t find us because this is where he grew up. This island is his home and his family, his ohana, is here.”
“Is that what you want, Mia? You want to leave the island?” Peter asked.
Mia paced the length of the room. “Yes. No. I don’t know,” she said, stopping in the middle of the room. “I don’t know,” she said in a strangled sob. “I don’t know anymore.”
Peter felt like his heart was breaking at the sight of his troubled daughter. He wished he could do something, anything, to take all the pain away but only she had that power. The only thing he could do right now was hold her and comfort her. He did just that. “Shh, everything will be alright, I promise,” he whispered as he rocked her back and forth.
“I don’t want to be scared anymore. I’m tired, so tired.” Mia’s voice came out muffled from burying her head in Peter’s chest but he understood every word. “I killed mom.”
“You did what you had to do to protect your daughter.” Peter grabbed Mia’s face and gently pushed it back so he could look into her eyes. “She was going to kill Sophie, Mia. You saved your daughter and that is all that matters.”
“Then why can’t anyone understand what I want to do,” she whispered.
“Because deep inside, that is not what you want. You know it and so does everyone else. All you have to do is allow yourself to see past the fear.”
Savi arrived home later that day with the two girls sleeping soundly in their car seats. She honked the horn to have someone help her with the girls and soon the housekeeper emerged from the front door.
“Good evening, Mrs. Hendricks,” she greeted with warm eyes.
“Hello, Lucy,” Savi greeted warmly, smiling at her housekeeper of five years. “Is Mia resting?”
“Mrs. McGarrett is not home,” Lucy informed Savi as she carried a sleeping Sophie inside.
“She still hasn’t come home?” Savi asked in a worried tone as she followed Lucy up the stairs.
“Yes, she was here not so long ago but left shortly after a visit from a man.”
“A man?” a very surprised Savi asked. “Do you know who he was?”
“Mrs. McGarrett answered the door but I did get a good look at him. Older man, but very handsome,” Lucy whispered as she tucked Sophie in on a crib that had been placed in Kelly’s room. “And he seemed quite shocked to see Mrs. McGarrett.”
“Peter,” Savi whispered as she closed the door behind her. She looked up into Lucy’s eyes and asked, “Did she leave with him?”
“No, like I mentioned before, she left after her visitor left,” she replied.
“Right, sorry,” Savi apologized distractedly. “Thank you.” Savi thanked Lucy before heading to her bedroom.
Savannah walked into her room and sat on the edge of the bed closing her eyes and rubbing her tense shoulders.
“Do you need help with that?”
Savi shrieked and jumped in surprise as she quickly turned to see her husband standing just outside the door that led to their connecting bathroom. “Oh my god, you scared me!” she exclaimed as she quickly walked into her husband’s arms. “I thought you weren’t coming home until next week. Lucy didn’t even mention you being here.”
“That’s because I asked her not to say anything,” he said.
“So what are you doing here? Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy you’re home. It’s just you didn’t call me.”
“I managed to finish things early so I could come back and give you a hand with things around here,” he explained. “I found this on your nightstand.” Jack grabbed the piece of paper from the top of the dresser and handed it over to Savi.
“What’s this,” she said as she began reading it. It was a note from Mia. “It doesn’t say where she’s going, just that she had something to take care of.”
Jack nodded as he walked to the dresser to retrieve a pair of pants. “Yeah, so how are things we with her and Steve? Have they talked?”
Savi sighed. “No and I’m afraid Mia might lose Steve forever this time.”
Jack raised an eyebrow in question.
“I talked to him today,” she said. “Jack, Steve is tired of everything going on. He said he was done fighting on his own for his marriage. I think he’s giving up on Mia.”
“I can see where he’s coming from. This whole time Mia has done nothing but hurt him. Look at what she did to his friendship with Danny. That was a shady thing to do,” Jack said.
“Hey, it’s not fair for you to judge Mia when she was going through a tough time.”
“And Steve wasn’t?” he countered back.
“He wasn’t the one with his memories wiped out.”
“But he was trying to help Mia. He was doing everything he could to help her remember something, anything,” he said matter of fact. “And what did she do? She went behind his back and screwed around with her husband’s best friend.”
“Mia did not sleep with Danny! Damn it Jack, why are you talking like that about Mia. She’s our friend.”
“Steve is our friend too.” Jack sighed when he realized what he was doing. He ran a hand through his damp hair and looked at Savi. “I’m sorry. I’m just tired of everyone making Mia the victim when Steve is hurting too. He’s my friend, Savi, and I want him to be happy. He deserves to be happy and if that means walking away from his marriage then I’ll have his back 100 percent. I don’t want this to come between us. Let them deal with their problems however they think is best.”
Mia walked into the almost darkened house. The sun was slowly setting and she could see it through the glass doors leading to the backyard. It had been a few days since she last stepped into this house, the day Sophie was kidnapped, but Mia could still feel the warmth stepping into this house brought.
Am I making the right decision? I love Steve, but is love enough to keep this marriage together? These thoughts were running through Mia’s mind as she walked up the stairs and into the master bedroom. She walked around the room taking everything in, the same questions running through her mind. Mia was about to walk out of the room, the memories becoming too much, when she tripped on something that was poking out from under the bed.
She bend down and discovered it was the box she had filled with pictures throughout the years. Tears instantly filled her eyes as she opened the box with trembling fingers. The first picture she laid eyes on was of her and Steve after a football game. It wasn’t just any game. It was the first game Steve had returned to after an injury that put him on the bench for a while. It was also the first night she had slept with him.
The memories this picture brought were too much for Mia. She quickly wiped away the tears that had fallen and closed the box before pushing it back under the bed. She stood up ready to walk out of the room and the house but immediately froze on her spot.
Leaning against the doorframe with his arms crossed as if he had been there for a while was Steve. Mia didn’t know how long he had been standing there. She had not heard him arrive but the piercing look he was giving her kept her glued on her spot.