Game Face

I posted this on AO3, too, but I wanted to share it here for anyone who may be interested. I had a couple scenes stuck in my head after the Super Bowl win, and I had to write one about Danny’s fan boy reactions to Peyton Manning. I wanted to write it from Danny’s POV, since I usually identify with him, but I couldn’t seem to make it work. So I wrote from Steve’s POV for the first time. Please be gentle. ;)

And thanks as always to my amazing beta, SheppardMcKay!

Steve couldn’t wait until the Super Bowl was over.

Usually, he would be all excited and analyzing the quarterback performances. But ever since Danny’s greatest quarterback of all time, Peyton Manning, was in the big game, that’s all he hears Danny talk about. When Denver upset Steve’s Patriots, he had to endure Danny running around the couch with that stupid Peyton Manning autographed football. Thinking back, it was a very cool gift Cath scored for Danny from the Pro Bowl they missed a few years ago. Seeing it now laying innocently in Danny’s section of the couch set his teeth grinding.

It was just about kick off time. Danny insisted they watch all the pre-game coverage so, as a good partner, he acquiesced. Despite his annoyance at Danny’s Peyton Manning hero-worship-gone-wild, he was happy that Danny was so giddy about something. After all the shit with Matt, then Melissa’s ex, and now Charlie’s illness, Danny deserved whatever respite he could get. With Cath’s departure and Aunt Deb’s recent funeral, they both deserved some fun and happiness.

“Is Peyton being interviewed yet?” Danny called from the kitchen.

Holding back a deep sigh, Steve replied loudly, “Nope.”

Balancing two Longboards and a bowl of freshly microwaved popcorn in his hands, Danny sat on the couch next to Steve.

“Oh! They’re starting the national anthem! Lady Gaga is singing it.”

Steve’s eyebrows arched up. “Lady who?”

Shushing him quickly, Danny leaned forward with his hands clasped loosely over his knees and watched the screen intently.

Steve frowned at him for a second then paid attention to the TV, seeing a blonde woman dressed in a red pantsuit with red eye shadow belt out the national anthem rather admirably.

At the end of the song Danny clapped while Steve surreptitiously wiped the unexpected wetness in the corner of his eye.

Danny excitedly said, “Lady Gaga killed it!”

“When did you become a Lady Gaga fan? Doesn’t seem to fit the man who knows the Bon Jovi catalogue,” Steve pointed out.

“I, my friend, have a plethora of musical interests. Grace is a bit of a little monster too,” Danny explained.

Steve felt like he wasn’t following the conversation. “Plethora? Little monster?”

“Yes, Steven. Plethora is an exc…”

“I know what plethora means, Danny. Why would you call Grace a little monster?”

Chuckling, Danny said, “A little monster is what Lady Gaga calls her fans. Besides, she’s classically trained, talented and a New Yorker. Gotta give it up for my Jersey neighbor.”

Steve huffed with amusement then nodded. They turned back to watch the game.

During the game, Steve became aware of Danny holding his Peyton Manning football like he was going to throw it. When he didn’t, he would turn it in his hands then flex his fingers on it.

Shifting a little, he breathed in deeply to calm the little flare of jealousy. Yes, he was jealous. Of a football.. And Peyton Manning. Dammit.

“Dammit, Peyton!” Danny yelled at the TV just then. Steve saw on the replay that Manning just threw an interception. Steve chewed on his lips to poorly hide the self-satisfied smirk.

Without looking at him, Danny growled, “Don’t say it, Steve…”

Holding his hands up, Steve looked completely innocent. “Didn’t say anything, Danno.”

“Yeah, well, I could hear your smirk over here,” Danny flicked his eyes briefly at Steve.

Steve snickered a bit then coughed when Danny started to look his way again. “Got a popcorn stuck in my throat,” Steve cleared his throat as he halfheartedly pounded his fist on his chest.

They continued watching the game and the ridiculous amounts of commercials. Most of the commercials so far were pretty forgettable. What the hell is a baby monkey puppy or whatever that was? Steve shook his head at how the advertisers came up with the most random crap to sell people more crap.

Steve had to admit the Denver Broncos were doing a great job on defense, even if Peyton really wasn’t doing anything spectacular. He could tell because Danny kept swearing every time a missed pass or a miscue involving Peyton happened.

Feeling a bit petty, he couldn’t stop himself from cheering for the Carolina Panthers in his head. Despite Cam Newton’s personality, he is a talented athlete. Plus, if he beat Peyton Manning, then Steve would root for him he thought meanly.

With the Broncos leading at halftime, Steve hit the head. He could over hear Danny getting pumped about the half time show, running to the upstairs bathroom and yelling at Steve to hurry up so he doesn’t miss any of it. All Steve could do was smirk and shake his head while in the bathroom.

Back on the couch, after their bathroom break, they settled in for the Half Time Show.

“Coldplay’s up first, babe!” Danny informed Steve as the Half Time Show began.

Steve thought they were doing well. Then he snuck a look over at Danny. Danny was so engrossed watching the performance that Steve couldn’t help but look. He saw how Danny’s white short sleeved button down was barely keeping closed with all the bouncing around Danny was doing while he sang along with the songs. His biceps were flexing along with his fist pumps. And Danny’s eyes crinkled whenever he smiled as he sang along.

“Steve, you’re staring,” Danny said unexpectedly, which broke Steve out of his reverie.

“Can’t help enjoying how much you’re enjoying this Half Time Show,” Steve winked.

Shaking his head and smiling, Danny just replied, “Goof,” then went back to watching.

Bruno Mars joined the show, and Steve knew him instantly. The guy’s Hawaii born, so they hear “Uptown Funk” on lots of the radio stations here. Steve paid better attention to this part, then when Beyonce started her part, he heard Danny whoop. Steve arched his eyebrow at Danny again, and Danny replied, “Remember, plethora of musical tastes, plus Grace has some of her music.”

Steve chuckled at Danny then finished watching the show. The big finale with the rainbow colored “Believe in Love” sign formed by half of the stadium was a sweet ending to an overall entertaining Half Time show. Steve couldn’t help but think that’s why he was sitting next to Danny.

Thankfully, the long game was finally getting to the latter part of the fourth quarter. Danny was hugging his Peyton autographed football like he was going to start running himself. He seemed a bit stressed, since the game was not quite in hand yet. Steve started to feel for Danny a bit and lose a little bit of his irrational Peyton Manning hate since it seemed like Danny really was invested in whether Peyton wins or not. So, he did start cheering for Peyton in his head. Just a little.

Then finally, Denver scored their offensive touchdown. Leaping off the couch, Danny screamed holding his ball up triumphantly over his head. When the Broncos went for the two point conversion, Danny was holding the ball tightly against his chest while he kneeled close to the television. Seeing Peyton successfully throw the two point conversion switched Danny into over drive. Jumping off the floor, he yelled, “That’s my man, Peyton!”

Steve kept his mouth shut, but was a good sport about it. He clapped saying, “Congrats, Danno. Peyton pulled it off.”

“You’re damn right he did,” Danny answered. Then he started just dancing around the couch with his football. Closing his eyes and sighing, Steve leaned his head back on the couch while the Broncos celebratory post-game festivities were on TV. He could hear Danny running with his Peyton Manning football around the kitchen. He was so intent on tuning out Danny’s overzealous Peyton cheering, that when Steve lifted his head back up, Danny was kneeling in front of him with his hands on Steve’s thighs.

“Hey, babe. I’m sorry that I’ve been kinda Peyton crazy lately.”

Steve snorted, “Kinda?”

Smirking, Danny’s face lit up.

“But you know what…” Danny slowly moved his hands up from Steve’s thighs to his chest. Moving his nose slowly along Steve’s, Danny stopped just inches from Steve’s lips.

“What?” Steve whispered as he felt his breath barely leave his mouth before Danny was practically breathing the same exhale.

Licking his lips, Danny gave him a goofy smile saying, “You’re always gonna be my MVP.” Then his lips pressed against Steve’s.

Steve was just about to deepen the kiss when Danny leaned back to look at him with eyes full of mirth. “Come on, star quarterback, show me how you handle a game,” Danny joked as he pulled Steve from the couch.

Standing in front of Danny, Steve wrapped his arms possessively around Danny’s hips. Then he deepened the kiss, pulling back with a little nip to Danny’s lips before soothing it with his tongue. “Depends if you’re going to play my wide receiver or tight end,” Steve said, with a twinkle in his eye.

Danny couldn’t help but laugh at the horrible innuendo. “Steve, that was really bad.”

Steve waggled his eye brows before hitting Danny straight in the libido with his All American smile. “Worked, though, right?”

“Yes, you animal, it always does,” Danny replied then gave Steve a quick peck on the lips. “Let’s hit the showers, Mr. MVP,” he tossed over his shoulder as he walked toward the stairs.

“That’s Lieutenant Commander, MVP, babe!” Steve called to a retreating Danny. Then before he jogged up the stairs, he hid Danny’s football behind the couch. “Bye, bye, Peyton,” Steve smugly said and then headed upstairs for the real game.


in fun fic news, here are the things on the go (and I may trade snippets if people ask politely):

  • Poe is a guardian angel and Finn’s his charge
  • Poe is a siren and Finn’s been hearing a song in his head since he could remember
  • ready for my close-up, mr. dameron ficlet, in which Poe is worried that Finn may not want to move in
  • A third story set in the Baby, I’m Howling For You H50 McDanno ‘verse where I introduce witches and Adam Noshimuri
  • Stormpilot based on The Time Traveller’s Wife
  • Stripper Poe Dameron (who needs a summary)

“Figured you guys need some grub … hospital food is the worst. And the portions? Very small.”


For them, life as they knew it was simple. Waking up everyday, with a desire to catch a wave better than the day before. The adrenaline that you feel paddling out, knowing that at any time you could get the ride of your life. And then… there’s the rush of walking on water. Only gods can do that. Everything they did was to preserve that life. To surf is to get up everyday with the desire to battle something greater than yourself.