And here we have the long overdue conclusion to the unexpected ‘Goddamn Hero’ series, based on the angst prompt ‘Shh, c’mere…” 

(~ part 1 & 2 can be found here and here respectively)

‘Who are you?’ Three simple words that caused Ty’s heart to break in half and fall into his stomach. This couldn’t be happening, not after the last few days, not after everything before that. They’d come so far, too far, he was not going to lose Zane to a head injury.

“What?” he asked, dreading the confirmation he knew was coming

Zane looked at him for a moment, dark eyes squinting a bit before blinking slowly “Who are you?”

Ty closed his own eyes, hoping he was blinking away the tears he could feel building up “You…you don’t recognise me?” stupid question but he needed to be sure

“Should I?” Zane narrowed his eyes looking exhausted and confused. All Ty wanted to do was reach out and hug him but instead he backed away slowly

“I’ll…I’ll go get a nurse” he informed his husband, trying not to cause a scene, it was the last thing either of them needed.

As he opened the door he suddenly realised that this was the first time he’d left the private hospital room voluntarily since he’d arrived days ago. Nick turned to face him from the seat by the door, obviously surprised to see Ty on the outside

“Everything alright?” Nick asked cautiously, standing so he was more level with Ty

Ty just shook his head unable to voice anything. Nick went to walk past him towards the room but Ty put a hand on his chest to stop him

“He’s awake” Ty muttered quietly

“…and that’s not good?”

“He….he doesn’t know who I am”


Ty didn’t resist as Nick pulled him into a tight hug, one hand clamped round the back of Ty’s neck. Releasing Ty enough to bring their foreheads together. It was a position they’d been in many times throughout the years, Ty was sure that if he breathed deep enough he’d be able to smell hot sand

“It’ll sort itself out Grady” Nick started in a soft voice “He’s probably still groggy from the meds. We’ve all been there, you know how it is”

“Yeah…maybe” Ty let the full weight of his head press against Nick “But what if it’s more than that Nick? What if he never remembers? What…What do I do then?…” he trailed off quietly

If Nick noticed Ty’s voice breaking he didn’t comment on it “If that happens then you will do what ya gotta. You’ll be there for him, support him, do what you can for both him and you and I have no doubt that he’ll fall back in love with you” Nick’s fingers tightened on the back of his neck “He’d be a fool not to”

Ty pulled away enough to look at Nick

“You really are a romantic piece of shit aren’t you?”

“Shut up asshole” Nick grinned, letting go of Ty’s neck to hit him in the arm

Ty sighed as he took a step away bringing both hands up to rest on the back of his neck

“This isn’t the end Ty” Nick stated sliding his hands into this pockets “It’s just a blip in the road”

“Blip? There’s been a blip? Annie’s worried voice cut straight through Ty’s chest, clenching tight around his heart. She approached them slowly “Something’s wrong”

“No…” Nick started when it became evident that Ty wasn’t able to speak “Garrett’s…umm awake bu-”

“He doesn’t remember me” Ty cut in

“Oh Ty” Annie reached out to put a hand on his arm but Ty shrugged away, he didn’t want her pity, he just wanted his husband back. Looking over Annie’s shoulder Ty made eye contact with Mark, who was giving both Ty and Nick a wary look.

Ty still felt uncomfortable being around the other marine but right now he had more pressing concerns and one curiosity

“Where’s Sadie?”

“In the canteen with my parents” Annie started looking towards the doorway to Zane’s room “One of your friends is explaining what happened. We thought it might be best for her to understand how poorly uncle Z is before we let her see him”

“Doc” Ty heard Nick mutter under his breath. Nick’s voice had always had a grounding effect on him and he was glad of it now. As awash with emotion as he was, he wasn’t the only person here who was important to Zane

“You can go in-”

“Mr Grady?” a new voice interrupted. Ty turned to face one of the nurses, it took a moment to realise why she was giving him a confused look, until he remembered that this was the first time he’d left the room, left his husband’s side

“He’s awake…”

The nurse nodded and entered the room, motioning for a couple of her colleagues to follow her. Ty gestured for Annie to follow them. It wasn’t until Nick placed a hand on his shoulder did Ty move towards the room and even then he couldn’t force himself to walk further than three paces into the room.

He watched silently as the nurses gave Zane a brief check over making notes of his vitals and drip settings. They re-positioned Zane so he was leaning back at a comfortable angle as they ask him simple questions. Zane seemed to be calm as he answered what he could in a hoarse voice, despite only being able to provide a handful of answers. It was also obvious to Ty that Zane was feeling at least some degree of pain

After a few minutes they declared that the doctor would be paged for a more thorough assessment but everything was looking positive and until the doctor arrived and told them otherwise they couldn’t foresee a problem with allowing Zane visitors in the form of his worried family and friends while he rested. Promising more painkillers once the doctor had looked him over the nurses left, one of them giving Ty a small smile as she passed.

Ty took a couple of steps closer to the bed, Nick’s hand moving from his shoulder to his back. Ty was glad of the support especially when he heard Zane say Annie’s name, she did have to introduce Mark though so at least that was something. Ty didn’t know what he’d have done if his husband recognised everyone but him.

“I’m sorry…”

“Don’t be Z” Annie squeezed Zane’s hand tightly “You’ve had a big knock to the head, things’ll be fuzzy for a while”

Zane replied with a sigh before turning his attention towards Ty and Nick. Catching Ty’s eyes he smiled slightly “You’ve come back”

Ty felt his breath catch in his throat as Annie questioned “Do you know who they are?”

“No, sorry” Zane replied sounding genuinely sorry “You were here before?”

“When you woke up, yeah” Ty answered, mildly surprised that he managed that much

“This is Nick and Tyler, you call him Ty” Annie informed him slowly watching Zane closely. She wasn’t the only one. When Ty’s name provided no reaction he felt Nick’s hand move back up to his shoulder, giving him a supportive squeeze.

“Garrett” Nick greeted as Ty fought to find his voice, the best he could come up with was a slight nod  

“M’tired Annie” Zane informed her

“We should let you rest” she told him, leaning over to place a kiss on his forehead “We’re all so glad you’re awake Z. We’ll be outside if you need anything”

As she let go of his hand Zane caught hold of her sleeve “Where’s Becky?”

Ty had been convinced he couldn’t feel any more heartbroken than he had the moment Zane had looked him directly in the eye and asked who he was. He’d been wrong, so very wrong – this was a whole new level of feeling distraught

“Oh Zane…”

Ty could only watch helplessly as Annie explained to his husband that Becky, his wife of ten years was no longer with them. Ty knew for a fact Nick was the only reason he was still standing, there were sure to be finger marks on his upper arm as his friend supported him. Ty had seen some horrific things in his life. Stuff that stayed with him, haunting his dreams and occasionally his waking thoughts and he knew for a fact that this, this moment right now, watching his husband reliving the death of his first spouse would be added to the list.

Zane did not react well.

Ty’s training kicked in as Zane became increasingly agitated. He noticed that Nick and Mark’s training wasn’t far behind his. As Zane shouted and thrashed around trying to get up and away from the bed, Mark pulled his wife away from the situation before returning to grab hold of Zane’s ankles. Nick had hold of Zane’s wrists, leaning over the bed at an awkward angle. While Ty grabbed this sides of Zane’s head, leaning down to whisper in his ear.

One of Zane’s arms got free and he managed to hit Ty in the side of the face as he tried to roll to one side. He stopped suddenly with an howl of pain, giving Nick the chance to recapture his arm. Zane had more than likely just discovered his broken pelvis. Ty closed his eyes and concentrated on talking to Zane. He knew his voice wasn’t as soothing as Zane’s could be but he hoped it helped as he amped up his West Virginian accent.

He would never be able to recall what he actually said to Zane but he would hazard a guess that it was full of soothing tones, nicknames and occasional threats mixed in with some begging, pleading and love yous. Something must have reached the larger man as he suddenly stopped struggling. Ty wasn’t sure if it was his words, the pain or the fact that Zane had worn himself out, whatever the reason he was just thankful that Zane was no longer trying to leave the bed.

Opening his eyes Ty could make out new faces and another familiar figure, though it took him a moment to clear his eyes of tears to focus on them properly         

“Johns take him!” Nick ordered and Ty felt someone grab his arm in a firm grip, he tried to shake them off but they just gripped tighter “Grady, Coffee!”

“I don’t drink coffee” he protested weakly

“Don’t care just go with Johns”


“Tyler look at me, please”

Ty forced himself to take a couple of deep breaths and look at his friend. Nick didn’t look too great. A quick look around the room revealed the others in pretty much the same state. Mark had Annie wrapped up in his arms, trying to comfort her as she sobbed quietly into his chest. Owen was panting slightly as he held onto Ty’s arm while two nurses and a couple of orderlies surrounded Zane.

Zane was laid back, half conscious and mumbling to himself, fresh tears rolling down his cheeks.    


“What?” Ty snapped turning back to face Nick

“Go with Owen, talk this out” Nick’s tone was pleading “He’s the best person to help you now”


“Ty please, I’ll stay and make sure Zane’s okay” Nick assured him “He calmed without needing to be sedated. I don’t know what you said to him but it worked” stepping forward Nick pulled him into a tight hug “You helped him, now go, let Johns help you so you can come back here stronger. He’s going to need you, you hear me? Now go get your head on straight, that’s an order”

Ty stepped back nodding. Orders he liked, orders he could follow, orders didn’t require him to make sense of what he was feeling. He followed Owen out of the room and was amazed when he managed it without looking back towards the bed. He knew if he’d seen Zane laying there in such a helpless state he’d never have made it to the canteen

It was almost two hours later when Ty approached Zane’s room again. It had taken a while but with Owen’s help he now felt able to take the next few steps, whatever they may be.

“He wanted some space” Nick answered without being asked

Ty just looked at him before he remembered that Nick had promised to stay with Zane.

“Thanks Irish” Ty patted him on the shoulder as he passed “Guessing he’s alone in there then?”


“Did they have to give him anything?”

“Only some pain killers” Nick explained “The doctor came to see him. They asked me to leave since I wasn’t family but his sister said that they’re pleased with his progress. It might have taken awhile for him to wake up but he’s more coherent than most. The memory loss looks to be temporary, though we all know they can never say that for sure…” Ty nodded, there were still moments from the concussion he suffered on the first case he ever worked with Zane that he couldn’t recall and that injury was nowhere near as bad as this one “They did another x-ray on his hips and are happy that he hasn’t damaged himself further with what I must admit was an incredible effort to get out of bed, especially for someone fresh out of a coma. I’ve only ever seen Sanchez move with that much determination that time Digger somehow set his sheets on fire”

Ty couldn’t help but chuckle at that particular memory “Has he said anything?”

“I tried to give him some space, nobody wants witnesses to their breakdowns, especially witnesses they don’t particularly like” Nick shrugged “He was talking to his sister and he seemed a lot calmer when we left. She’s gone to update their folks. He seemed to be resting whenever I looked in on him”

“I’m gunna go in there, see if he needs anything”

Nick nodded “And I’ll be sitting here if you need anything”

Ty nodded a thanks before heading into the room, closing the door quietly behind him. The lights had been turned down low and Zane looked to be resting peacefully, propped up in the bed. All that was missing was an open book and one of the kittens and Ty could have tricked himself that all was well.

Deliberately making noise, Ty approached the bed slowly. Zane cracked an eye open when he was about five feet away.

“Hey” he smiled sleepily

“Zane…” Ty lifted a hand then let it drop, suppressing the urge to touch his husband “I, okay, I wasn’t going to do this, I wanted to wait until…well I don’t know when but I need to tell you who I am” Ty paused, running a hand through his hair as he looked into Zane’s dark eyes. God this was difficult, he needed to get the information out but didn’t want to upset or hinder Zane “Well you know who I am, I need to explain who you are to me and I-”


Ty stopped talking as soon as he heard his name, spoken in a soft accented voice. His name had never sounded better and he realised for the first time how worried he’d been that he’d never hear the other man say it again.

“Zane, please let me finish, I need you to know…” Ty trailed off as Zane held his left hand out palm up and made the universal ‘come over here’ gesture  

“Shh, c’mere…” Ty watched Zane’s fingers as they curled “Doll”

“Doll?” Ty questioned slowly, as he closed the remaining distance and took Zane’s hand “You, you remember me?”

“Not exactly” Zane started sadly “Annie filled me in but it’s patchy” Zane squeezed Ty’s fingers and held up his hand “This, this I remember”


“You’re not talking me into another one”

“You’ve lost me”

“Tattoo Ty, one of the most physically painful experiences of my life” Zane clarified, bringing Ty’s hand up to his mouth so he could kiss Ty’s wedding ring tattoo “Worth it though”

“You remember the wedding?”

Zane shook his head and Ty had to look somewhere other than Zane’s eyes otherwise the unshed tears he saw there would set him off. Instead he focused on running the fingers of his free hand through Zane’s dark curls. The motion sometimes soothed Zane, he hoped that was the case now.

“Not really I’m afraid” Zane started, he was still speaking quietly. Ty wasn’t sure if that was due to the emotion, the sore throat Zane no doubt had after breathing through a tube for three days or sheer exhaustion, the signs of which were obvious to Ty “When Annie was telling me stuff I was looking at my finger and got like a pain memory and when I looked up I could see you sitting there holding my other hand and grinning like a loon. When I looked back down I could see the tattoo gun and all I remember focusing on was your hand and your new shiny, clingfilm wrapped tattoo resting on my thigh”

Ty leaned over quickly to place a gently kiss on Zane’s closed lips. There was no way he was letting that story pass without attempting to show Zane how he felt

“We’ll get through this Lone Star, I promise you we’ll get you better” Ty reassured him “How’s the rest of your memories?”

“Very patchy. I kind of get flashes and random bits” Zane confessed, seeming to settle back into the pillows further “I know Becky’s gone. I can remember bits and it hurts, I’m sorry” Zane finished looking up at Ty

“Don’t you ever feel like you need to apoligise for that” Ty told him “I know I’m not a replacement for her, I never could be and don’t want to be. She was a massive part of your life and helped turn you into the man I love”

“Thank you” Zane smiled at him, reaching up with the hand that wasn’t still entangled with Ty’s to cup Ty’s face “I know I have you now. I remember a mountain, scuba diving, a great big fuck-off cat and a very small but oh so painful tattoo”

Zane tugged Ty down into another kiss

“They told me that the memory vagueness is normal and that it’ll take time but I should recover most things. I may need your help though”

“Your wish is my command” Ty gave him a lopsided grin “Once you’re back up and fit for purpose I’m sure we can reenact anything you’re missing…how long till your hips are good to go again?”

Zane managed to swat him round the back of the head before Ty could duck away “Losing your touch Meowmix”

“Dick” Ty smirked fondly, rubbing at his head “Seriously though, you have no idea how relieved I am” Ty quickly grabbed the visitor chair and position it at the head of the bed. Getting comfy he took ahold of Zane’s hand and began playing with his fingers “Wish I could climb in there with you”

“What’s stopping you?”

“Your broken pelvis”

“…fair point” Zane yawned and pushed further back into his pillows “You going to tell me what happened?”

“Naaa it’s not my story to tell”


“It’s not” Ty assured him “There’s a little girl waiting to thank you, speaking off…” Ty stood to retrieve the stuffed bunny from its new perch atop the drip stand. He idly wondered who’d put it there as he handed it to Zane, who gave the bunny a confused look “I think she should be the one to tell you, after all you’re her goddamn hero” leaning down Ty gave Zane another quick kiss, running a thumb over Zane’s stubbly cheek as he pulled away “Mine too, but I’m sure she’ll tell it better”  

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