Becoming Superman

A/N: *Please be warned, while I have not read all the spoilers for Into The Belly Of The Beast, I have read some, so if you are spoiler free you will probably want to stay away from this until Tuesday. Also this is pretty dark and I flew beta-free so read at your own risk*

Reviews are payment to Fanfic writers so feel free to tip as you feel appropriate. Gratuity of 18% is automatically added to reading parties of 8 or more. ;)

Disclaimers: I do not own Castle or its characters, I just like to take them out to play and torture them every once in a while. Nor are the lyrics mine. The song: "Titanium" by David Guetta featuring Sia.


I'm bulletproof, nothing to lose

Fire away, fire away

There was no sense of time, no seconds, minutes or hours. The room floated, in and out, twisting and turning in a haze around her. Black, red, yellow, green. Lights flashed. Colors coming out of nothing and disappearing into the ether just as quickly. Consciousness came in spurts as she stared blankly at the wall. One eye blurred. Maybe she was unconscious now. She could barely tell anymore. The pounding in her temples, pulsing starbursts of red had since turned into a steady throb threatening the frayed threads of sanity tethering her to reality.

A burst of manic laughter flew from her throat, echoing in the room, filling it with a brief choir of insanity, her lips twisting into a trembling smile as tendrils of cold crept up from the concrete floor seeping through her layers of soaking clothes, past the thin barrier of her skin and deep into her boned. Festering, leaching her strength.

Another tether snapped.

It wasn't supposed to be like this. A routine undercover op. Easy, in and out. She should have known. Nothing ever goes as planned. It had been far from routine. She should have gotten out the minute she realized Elaina Markov was a contract killer not a low level drug dealer. But she could handle it, right? She could do anything...

After being shot she had likened herself to a superhero. Being able to take a bullet directly to the heart and living meant she could survive anything, right? But that pain, it had been nothing compared to the torture she had been going through for the last… hour? Two? Day? Week?

A tear painted a trail of pink down her temple, tangling in the wisps of hair matted against her ear before dripping to the floor. Her eyelids fluttered shut as she imagined that pain, the burn of the bullet ripping through her chest, cracking her sternum, carving a perfectly round hole in her heart. She could handle that; she had survived that.

Beckett… Kate… Look at me Kate. I love you, Kate. Don't leave me. Please. I love you…

But this was a different kind of pain, the kind that never stopped.

"Castle…"

Ricochet, you take your aim

Fire away, fire away

"Where are you going?"

A slow smile spread across Kate's face. Happy creases formed around her mouth, crinkling under her eyes, as a strong arm snaked out from under the blanket accompanying the sleep-thickened question, snagging her around the middle.

"It's late, I need to go for my run."

She had been slacking lately, trading her normal daily three miles for few more blissful moments snuggling in the honeymoon haze of engagement.

"You don't need to run. You're Superman. Except in heels. Leap tall buildings in a single bound…"

A giggle slipped out; a sound that was saved for these times. These moments when the rest of the world melted away, leaving only the two of them here, bathed in the orange glow of morning light, swaddled in a pool of cotton and satin, the scent of him surrounding her.

"Superman, really?" She teased, her tongue pressed against the back of her teeth, as he scooted up behind her, fitting the front of his body to the back of hers, melding them into one, his arm never loosening from around her middle. Snug, tight, comforting.

"Yes Superman." He mumbled, his lips vibrating against the ticklish spot behind her ear. "And you never see Clark Kent workout, do you?"

Beckett's nose scrunched. She really couldn't argue with the man's logic, or the warmth spreading from his palm directly to her belly. "No… I guess not…"

"Mmhmm, exactly. So just stay here, sleep a little longer. We can work out together later."

"Work out, huh?"

"That's what I said."

The smile didn't leave her lips, even as her eyelids drifted shut again, the cloud of sleep encompassing her.

"Love you…"

Shoot me down but I won't fall

"Love you too."

Her eyes snapped open, the single fluorescent bulb swinging from the ceiling, forcing a pained groan as it temporarily blinded her, leaving a swirl of metallic splotches dancing in front of her eyes.

"Ca… ca…. buh… buh…"

Random sounds spluttered from her lips as a spasm of shivers wracked her body. She was so cold. Blocks of ice encompassed her legs, making movement impossible. She couldn't run; there was no place to hide. She had heard about it before, even seen videos. Water boarding, baths of ice water, but nothing she had imagined even came close to the level of pain she had experienced during those hours, days, minutes, seconds of torture. The pain that remained, etched into her bones.

She attempted to flex her fingers, a futile attempt at mobility. Her hand fell limply to the ground beside her face. Another spasm seized her body as the phantom snap echoed in her ears. At least they were numb now; she could no longer feel the pain in the two fingers they had broken in another futile attempt to get her to talk.

Stone-hard, machine gun

Firing at the ones who run

There was a good chance her cheekbone was broken, fractured at the very least. That she could still feel as she inched her body closer to the door. A foot, a centimeter? It was probably closer to the latter.

A bubble of red spit spluttered from her lips. She had seen the tray of pliers and clamps as they dragged her half-conscious body across the floor to the cell. She knew what was in store when they came back for her, but still she had remained silent. Not even her name or badge number uttered.

They wouldn't break her.

They couldn't.

Stone-hard as bulletproof glass

"So…"

"Hmm."

She flipped when she awoke for the second time that morning… that, oh wow, afternoon, she noted as she eyed the clock over her fiancé's shoulder.

"If I'm Superman does that make you Lois Lane?"

"Smart, gorgeous writer? I guess it does."

"Well, I do rescue you constantly. So, if by 'smart and gorgeous' you mean annoying and always getting into trouble then yes, I believe you fit the bill perfectly."

She was still smiling, the twinkle spreading to her eyes, flushing her skin. She never wanted to get over this feeling, this euphoria. The "love haze" she had explained to Alexis a couple of weeks before. It was, he was, intoxicating.

"Well then I guess I am Superman too, because I have still managed to rescue you more times than you've rescued me."

"Have not."

"Have too."

Her nose crinkled as she leaned in to kiss the self-satisfied smirk off of his face, her body once again melting into his, becoming one. Maybe he was right maybe they were both Superman. Not that she would ever tell him that.

You shoot me down but I won't fall

"Listen to me!"

She groaned as the steel-toed boot connected with her middle, the same spot where Castle's hand had held her so tightly hours, days, weeks before. Warmth and love replaced by cold pain.

"I asked, are you ready to talk?"

Beckett blinked her eyes open at the man towering over her, forcing her mind to process the words through his thick Russian accent, her eyes to focus through the haze of dancing lights.

"I…" her voice was hoarse, the mixture of spit and blood thick in her throat, coating her cracked, chapped lips. "I have a question."

He sighed in exasperation, arms crossing over his chest. "What?"

"Who rescues Superman?"

His brow creased in question as her eyes crossed; fear licking her chest as three of him momentarily stood over her. "Excuse me?"

"Superman always rescues Lois Lane but who rescues him when he is in trouble?"

He let out a grunt, stepping farther into her space, stooping down to haul her up by her armpits. "Let's go."

"It's a trick question." She continued to mumble, head lulling, as the blocks of ice that were her feet began to thaw, the picks of millions of pins and needles crippled her legs causing her knees to buckle. "Superman always manages to rescue himself."

I am titanium