Remembering Jack Lord

Christmas 2016



A Quiet Christmas Evening

 

By Steve's Girl

 

Note: In 2013 we decided that Steve had a pet, a King Charles spaniel named Kela (Sailor). Here is how Steve and Kela spent Christmas 2013.

 

On December 25th, at 10:00 pm, Steve sat on his lanai, reviewing the past two days. It was quiet up there, the usual Christmas hustle and bustle of Waikiki being far away.  Jogging along Kuhio Beach that morning, Steve had seen a lot of people who were dressed for Christmas jogging. Despite the unusual warmth, 82 degrees, men usually had the ear phones of their portable cd players hidden under reindeer antlers, women under Santa caps trimmed with "real" fur. Everyone was wearing Merry Christmas T-shirts with snow-covered pine trees, reindeer sleighs, and Santas in long red coats and black boots.

 

Old cliches die hard, Steve mused. Who has ever heard of snow covered trees, let alone pine trees, in Hawai'i. Certainly someone could make a fortune designing a Mele Kalikimaka T-shirt with Santa clad only in red swim shorts and a red fur-trimmed cap, on a surfboard and Rudolph relaxing in the warm sand, sucking a mai tai through a straw from a big bucket?

 

Steve had had breakfast at Duke's Canoe, a restaurant on Kalakaua Avenue, where the waitresses had worn lovely arrangements of ribbons and Christmas ornaments in their hair and the waiters had been dressed in brown shorts and green shirts and had worn antlers on their heads.

                       

#

 

The annual Christmas party at the governor's home at Washington Place the night before had gone well. After everyone had left, the governor had thanked him and his men for a job well done and had wished them Mele Kalikimaka, hoping that nothing would spoil their Christmas, like three years ago.[1]

 

Steve looked affectionately at Kela, who lay sleeping at his feet. This would be the first Christmas in many a year he wouldn't spend alone. More than that, he would be in company with which he felt at ease. Granted, he often had been invited by colleagues or friends – and had gone sometimes – but he always had felt like an intruder.

 

On the small table to his left lay a letter Steve had not opened, yet, but had saved for this evening, when he would be sitting outside, enjoying the soft breeze, and looking down at Waikiki spread below like a dark carpet studded with lights.

 

The letter had been delivered to the Palace two days earlier. When he had come in from an exhausting day in court, Jenny had given it to him, informing him that it had been screened already.

She must have been suspicious, because the penmanship revealed that the writer was not accustomed to correspondence. Steve had taken the letter, spotted the Australian stamp at once, smiled, and looked at the sender:

 

Alberta Johnson

Oodnadatta, South Australia; Australia

 

"Thank you, Jenny," Steve had said, smiling, and Jenny had wondered why her boss seemed to be in such a good mood all of a sudden.

 

Steve had gone into his office, shrugged out of his jacket, loosened his tie, and reached for his letter opener, when he had spotted the words "Not to be opened before Christmas!"

 

Steve had chuckled, remembering Jenny's bewildered voice on the intercom about eight weeks ago:

 

"Steve, a Mrs. Johnson is here to see you."

 

Steve hadn't had the faintest idea who this Mrs. Johnson might be.

 

The office door had opened, and a big, strong woman had entered. Grey hair, which obviously had been red once, tied in a neat bun, framed a face that was covered with masses of freckles and dominated by a pair of bright green eyes.

 

"Good afternoon, Mrs. Johnson. Will you take a seat, please?"

 

"Good afternoon, Mr. McGarrett, thank you," Mrs. Johnson had replied in a very broad Australian accent.

 

"What can I do for you, Mrs. Johnson?"

 

"You see, Mr. McGarrett, Henrietta Thistlehurst was my cousin,"  Mrs. Johnson had plunged right in.

"During this time of the year, our family meet for a reunion in San Francisco every two years, and, usually, I stop on my way, in Honolulu, to spend a few days with Hetty, and then, we fly to San Francisco together. This year, I couldn't reach her to inform her of my time of arrival, and when I went to her home, her neighbors iinformed me that she died in a car accident a few weeks ago. So I went to the police, and there, I was told that she had simply walked into your car."

 

"Yes, I'm afraid that's true," Steve had replied in a sombre voice, "I stepped fully on the brakes, but  she seemed to appear out of nowhere."

 

"Yes, the police officer told me so. Please, don't feel guilty, Mr. McGarrett. It's really not surprising.

Hetty and her husband, Bartholomew, were birds of a feather. Their minds were always elsewhere; heads up in the clouds and feet not planted firmly on the ground. Bart died the same way. He was a history teacher in England, fascinated by James Cook's voyages, fascinated by Hawai'i. When he took a sabbatical, he came to Hawai'i, because he longed to see with his own eyes the places where Hawaiian history had been made. He fell off a cliff  — have forgotten the name — over which a warrior or a king — don't know that name either — had driven his enemies down into the sea. Hetty said he hadn't paid attention to the ‘Danger!’ signs, but simply had walked on." After a few moments of silence, Mrs. Johnson had asked, "What I'd like to know...mmhhh...do you happen to know what became of Cromwell?"

 

"I'm sorry, Mrs. Johnson. I don't know anyone named Cromwell in connection with the accident," Steve had answered.

 

"Well, yes, I guess so. Cromwell is a dog. Hetty named him ‘Cromwell,’ because he was a King Charles Spaniel. Cromwell was an important figure in British history, but though Hetty explained everything in great detail to me, I can't remember if and how and why  Cromwell and King Charles were connected."

 

Steve's face had lit up. "Now, I understand! Cromwell was her dog's name! Yes, I know what happened to him. I took him in, I simply couldn't resist those eyes. I named him ‘Kela,’ which means ‘Sailor’ in Hawaiian, and he is well and happy.”

 

"You are a good man, Mr. McGarrett. My husband owns a big sheep farm in Australia, and our dogs are simply family members."

 

"Would you like to meet Kela to be assured that he is well taken care of?"

 

"I'm afraid I can't, Mr. McGarrett. I have to hurry. My plane leaves in two hours. I'm sure that he is in good hands."

 

Steve had seen to it that Mrs. Johnson reached her plane. After they had made it to the airport in record time, with screeching tires, Mrs. Johnson's eyes had sparkled with delight.

 

"Whoa! What a bloody jolly ride, mate!" she had exclaimed. The admiration in her voice was evident.

 

#

 

Steve smiled and opened the letter finding a Christmas card and a photograph. The card read:

 

Best wishes for a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

to Steve McGarrett and Kela

from Alberta & Richard Johnson.

 

P.S.       Here are our sheep dogs, Australian Sheperds,

             Kenny, Lucky, Blacky, and Cookie.

 

Steve slid the card and the photograph back into the envelope and leaned back in his chair, contemplating:

 

Though the year isn't completely over, yet, it has been a satisfying one, so far. Five-0 has caught most of the villains, and none of us has been severely wounded.

 

But Steve still felt guilty for having run over Hetty Thistlehurst, even though he knew things like that  happened. Deep down inside, he knew that he had taken Kela in because of that guilt. But how lucky he had been in doing so! Years ago, someone who had taken in an abandoned cat had quoted to him a line by Australian poet Pam Brown:

 

One small cat changes coming home to an empty house into coming home.

           

That this was true for dogs, as well, Steve had been made aware often during the past months.

 

As Steve rose from his chair, Kela opened one eye and yawned heartily.

 

"Let's go inside, Kela, and get some sleep. Tomorrow, it's business as usual."

 

Obediently, Kela rose and followed Steve inside.


[1] RJL fan fiction story "Kidnapped!"  (2010)



Patch Me Through

By Honu59


With apologies to James Lord Pierpont, who composed "Jingle Bells" in 1857.


H-P-D, H-P-D,

Patch me through to Steve!

For there's an emergency

That you would not believe!

H-P-D, H-P-D,

Hurry, if you please!

Danny's in an awful mess

And Kono's still on leave.

~

Yesterday at noon,

When out to make a bust,

Chin Ho Kelly read the rights

While Ben applied the cuffs.

The perp, he lawyered up,

Was out today on bail.

To seek revenge on H-Five-O

On him we need a tail! Oh…

~

H-P-D, H-P-D,

Patch me through to Steve!

For there's an emergency

That you would not believe!

H-P-D, H-P-D,

Hurry, if you please!

Danny's in an awful mess

And Kono's still on leave.

~

Duke spotted a sedan

The license plate was right.

He followed it discreetly, but

The traffic, it was tight.

It turned by Diamond Head

And then it headed north

Lukela drove with nerves of steel

For all that he was worth. Oh…

~

H-P-D, H-P-D,

Patch me through to Steve!

For there's an emergency

That you would not believe!

H-P-D, H-P-D,

Hurry, if you please!

Danny's in an awful mess

And Kono's still on leave.

~

The car, it finally stopped

This had to be the place.

Duke peered inside the building

And saw a familiar face.

Dan Williams bound and gagged,

His blood was on his suit.

Three thugs were pointing guns at him;

One had a knife, to boot! Oh…

~

H-P-D, H-P-D,

Patch me through to Steve!

For there's an emergency

That you would not believe!

H-P-D, H-P-D,

Hurry, if you please!

Danny's in an awful mess

And Kono's still on leave.

~

Duke sprinted to his car

For backup he did call

"Patch me through to Five-O now,

And make that on the ball!

Then patch me to the morgue,

Directly to the Doc.

I've got to tell him Danny's hurt -

The suspect cleaned his clock." Oh…

~

H-P-D, H-P-D,

Patch me through to Steve!

For there's an emergency

That you would not believe!

H-P-D, H-P-D,

Hurry, if you please!

Danny's in an awful mess

And Kono's still on leave.

~

Soon Five-O, they arrived

Surround the place, they did

They drew their guns and waited there

While keeping nicely hid.

McGarrett led the way

His heart was filled with dread

For fearing that his closest friend

Might already be dead. Oh…

~

H-P-D, H-P-D,

Patch me through to Steve!

For there's an emergency

That you would not believe!

H-P-D, H-P-D,

Hurry, if you please!

Danny's in an awful mess

And Kono's still on leave.

~

Chin busted down the door,

Thank God they weren't too late.

The perps were taken by surprise

By McGarrett's .38!

Then all were packed away

In shiny black and whites

They'd all return to lock-up

By the closing of the night. Oh…

~

H-P-D, H-P-D,

Patch me through to Steve!

For there's an emergency

That you would not believe!

H-P-D, H-P-D,

Hurry, if you please!

Danny's in an awful mess

And Kono's still on leave.

~

The ambulance arrived

Doc Bergman on the scene,

"He'll live" was the pronouncement

To relief of the whole team.

"We're one detective short,

While Danno's on the mend.

So Jenny, please call Kono

'Cause his leave time, I'll rescind." Oh…

~

H-P-D, H-P-D,

Patch me through to Steve!

For there's an emergency

That you would not believe!

H-P-D, H-P-D,

Hurry, if you please!

Danny's in an awful mess

And Kono's still on leave.



Christmas in Waikiki


By H50 1.0 FOREVER


 

It had been a long month, between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Between seeking additional evidence to help John Manicote prosecute a case against the drug kingpin Kimo Ohana and going after the latest Red Chinese spy to try and infiltrate the Islands, Steve McGarrett was tired.


He pulled into Space 11 on the parking deck before his building and parked his car. Alighting, he took his briefcase from the back seat and made his way toward the elevator lobby. After collecting his mail from the bank of mail boxes on the wall near the elevator, he took the lift up to the seventh floor. Minutes later, he turned the key in the lock on the door to his apartment and let himself in. A motion-sensitive light came on to show him the way as he entered his study to drop off the mail and his briefcase.


Continuing on, into his bedroom, he divested himself of his suit, emptied the pockets, and placed their contents on the nightstand beside the bed. He folded the suit and placed it in the basket of items to go to the dry cleaners, then made his way in to take a shower. The warm water spraying down, upon him, helped him to relax even before he began to bathe.


After drying his hair and donning a nylon jogging suit and tennis shoes, he made his way into the kitchen, where he warmed a can of soup and poured a glass of milk. It was warm in the apartment, and so, he opened the jalousie windows that flanked the sliding glass doors. He also turned on the stereo to play easy listening music against the street noise emanating from below. Then, he sat down at the small table in the dining alcove and partook of his soup.


~


Steve had taken only half when his doorbell rang. Rising, he went out to answer it to see his sister and brother-in-law, Mary Ann and Tom Whalen.


“Surprise!” they exclaimed.


“Well, I don’t believe it!” he said as he gave his sister a hug and shook Tom’s hand.


“Neither do we!” Mary Ann replied. “Tom won this trip! The sponsors said we could go whenever and wherever we wanted, so we said, ‘Let’s go for Christmas and surprise Steve.’”


“Good! Good! Come on in!” Steve invited them. “Have you eaten? I can warm you a can of soup.”


“We’ve eaten, and no. We would not be interested in a can of soup. Surely, you eat better than that on a top cop’s salary.”


“Call next time, and I’ll run by Times Market and pick up something,” Steve retorted.


“Go on and finish your dinner, Steve,” Tom said.


“If you don’t mind. It’s been a long day,” Steve replied.


They joined him at the table.


“Not a single decoration!” Mary Ann declared as she glanced about. “Not even a tree! What am I going to do with you?”


“Call next time, and I’ll run by Times Market and pick up something,” Steve repeated.


“Hurry up and eat, and we’ll all run by Times Market and pick up something,” Mary Ann retorted.


~


Sure enough, as soon as Steve had partaken of his soup and milk, rinsed his dishes, and put them in the dishwasher, they left and drove to the grocery store. A charity group was selling Christmas trees in the parking lot. Not many remained at that point, but they managed to find a tree that would serve well – as long as they placed it in a corner to hide its bare side.


“You do have decorations, don’t you?” Mary Ann asked him.


“A few,” Steve replied.


“A few? I hope they sell decorations in the store,” she said as she started off across the parking lot.


“We may as well wait in the car,” Tom said. “She’s not interested in our input at this point.”


Steve chuckled as he watched his sister’s impatient and sassy departing figure. “Some things never change.”


“She’ll be there for awhile before she finds a turkey, all the trimmings, and anything else that catches her eye,” Tom said. “So, how have you been?”


“Busy, too busy,” Steve replied. “I’m starting to think this is a young man’s work.”


Tom chuckled. “I was thinking the same thing not more than three days ago. Does something happen to us as we approach the age of sixty?”


“I don’t know. Are you approaching the age of sixty, Tom?” Steve asked with intended vagueness.


“Hold on, now. I’m younger than you are,” Tom reminded him.


Steve merely chuckled. After a long pause, he asked, “Work going okay?”


“Well enough. And you?”


“Well enough,” Steve replied.


“Still no marriage prospects?” Tom asked.


Steve looked around at his brother-in-law and said, “I would expect that question from Mary Ann, but from you, Tom?”


“Sorry. I’m running out of topics for conversation,” Tom replied.


“Sorry, Tom. I’m half asleep. The past month at work has been rough. My plan was to have some soup, then fall into bed.”


“Then, let me run you home, and we’ll see you in the morning,” Tom said.


“Where will Mary Ann put the turkey and all the trimmings?”


“Never mind. Here she comes,” Tom replied.


“All they had were lights,” Mary Ann spat as she got into the car. “No balls, no tinsel, nothing. Really, Steve. Everyone has Christmas decorations.”


“No turkey? No trimmings?” Steve asked her.


“I suppose we’ll have to have a can of soup at your house,” she retorted.


“Or PB&J. I make a mean PB&J,” Steve told her.


She stuck her tongue out at him. “Never mind. I have a list of restaurants that will be open tomorrow. We’ll have Christmas dinner out.” Before Steve or Tom could reply, she muttered under her breath. “Mom would have a fit if she knew how we were spending this Christmas.”


~


The next day, when Mary Ann and Tom arrived at Steve’s apartment, they were surprised to find it cheerfully decorated with Christmas decorations. They recognized the tree that stood in the corner, but they had no idea how all the decorations had materialized.


“It’s all in knowing where to shop,” Steve told them. “You go to Chinatown, where most people don’t celebrate Christmas. The Oahu Market is open. They even had decorations, a nice turkey, and all the trimmings. I just put the turkey in the oven. Why don’t you see what you can do with a couple of cans of pumpkin, green beans, and cranberry sauce.”


Mary Ann stared in disbelief at her brother even as she made her way into the kitchen. “You always did like to back me in a corner.”


“You always did back easily into corners,” he replied. “Merry Christmas, Sis.”