Rating: PG-13 - Just a little suggestiveness once in a while
Pairing: Castle/Beckett (or Caskett, if you'd prefer)
Spoilers: Mentions of Little Girl Lost and A Deadly Game
Summary: A brief look at Kate Beckett's history as a Castle fangirl.
Author's Note: This was sparked by a fun little conversation I had the other day on tumblr about fangirl!Kate Beckett. I didn't expect to actually write it, but I couldn't help but give it a shot. Once again, I hope I've done the characters justice.
Disclaimer: I claim no ownership of Castle or any names recognizable from the show. I'm just having a little bit of fun.
I hope you all enjoy!
The cursor's patient blinking reminded her that she still hadn't completed her task. She'd been so sure of it when she got home, so sure that she'd be able to just log in and choose that pesky option to deactivate or delete her account. Then she'd never have to worry about him finding out she'd done more than subscribe to his website out of professional curiosity. She'd never have to worry about him finding out exactly how long she'd been a subscriber, or how familiar with his work she really was. At least Will hadn't opened his mouth and made it worse. Castle didn't need any more fuel on his fire.
Of course, knowing him, he was probably at home doing a search right now. Trying to determine her secret Richard Castle fangirl identity and find out not just what she'd been saying about him but how long she'd been saying it. He was an egomaniac like that. A sometimes brilliant, insightful egomaniac (and she'd deny that until she was blue in the face if asked), but an egomaniac nonetheless. The problem was, this time he wasn't wrong. She did spend her time on the forum, she had read his biography a few times over, and as much as it pained her to admit she had felt a delighted thrill run through her when the first gossip came in about his new book. The one he was basing on her. Her. That was assuming he ever wrote in between bouts of annoying her. There were times when she wasn't so sure.
If he ever figured out which username was hers, she would never live it down. Ever. He would make fun of her for years to come; he would stick around for years to come just to make fun of her for it. She'd already tipped her hand once, mere moments after meeting him, by referencing what was undeniably his least popular book (and yet somehow her favorite). He would tease her for the rest of her life if he knew her handle absolutely certified her for hardcore Castle groupie status. No, he couldn't ever find out her username was a tribute to the highly underrated (in her opinion) Hell Hath No Fury.
So she had to say goodbye to the username. To the account completely. It wouldn't delete her previous posts or any of her comments, but it would at least keep him from finding her now. That's what mattered. She would close out that email account too, the one she'd been hanging on to for as long as she could remember. She would miss it, and the forum, but not that much.
She saw enough of him anyway. And contrary to what her younger, more naïve self once surmised in a post she hoped was buried deep, deep down in the archives (he couldn't get Black Pawn to dig those up for him could he?), it wasn't really that impressive. No, it was time to let 'AParel-legalgirl98' go. Yes, her eighteen year old self had been so witty, making a play on words with the main character's name and her possible career. Not that she had intended to stop at paralegal; Castle had pegged her about that, too, but at eighteen and just out of high school when she'd stumbled upon Castle's books (and just a few weeks later the forum) her eye was on a paralegal job at her mother's law firm for the summer before college. Hence the name. But now it was time to put it to rest.
Besides, if she really missed the Official Richard Castle forum, all she had to do was pick up her phone. He'd be happy to talk about himself enough to satisfy any curiosities she might have.
It took over a year, but the curiosity got the better of her.
As much as it pained her to say it, it did. She needed to know.
Things had been different since the summer. Since the Hamptons debacle she tried not to think about, and his ex-wife tagging along to "stay on top" on him while he finished Naked Heat (as much as she did enjoy her fictional counterpart, she was sure the naming conventions would never fail to make her roll her eyes), and frankly he just didn't talk about it as much. His writing, anyway. He still talked. Almost constantly, in fact, but not about the writing. Not about the books.
Honestly, she wanted to know what he was keeping under wraps. She'd rapidly learned a quiet Castle could only mean something she probably wasn't going to like. So to the official forum (and a couple of the fan sites, too) she went. It never hurt to know more. Especially not about Castle. In a way, this time it really was professional research; the last thing she needed was his groupies – his actual groupies – showing up at her crime scenes. So she would just… monitor things a little bit. No big deal, right?
Yes, she felt a little silly, trying to come up with a username that met her criteria. It had to be as anonymous as possible – the entire reason she'd gotten rid of her first one was to keep him from finding her, after all – it couldn't be too ridiculous, and obviously couldn't already be taken. It was harder than she'd thought it would be, too. Anything that sounded like something she might choose was out of the question, but anything that sounded too fake might earn her scrutiny, too. No, it had to be just right.
In the end her decision was almost made for her. It wasn't her first choice by a long shot, but it stayed on theme with the majority of other posters; it wasn't focused on his older works, indicating she might be a mega fan or whatever he would call her. It was more than a little meta, he'd never think it was really her. They both knew owning up as his inspiration or his muse or whatever he might be calling her these days was something she'd only do under great duress. It was that fact that made her choice perfect. Plus, it was surprisingly free, like one of Castle's supposed signs from the universe that it was meant for her. She realized with a little thrill if she was careful, she could go back to reading and posting all she wanted, too.
Starting right now. After all, it was just her, a glass of pinot (given to her by Castle as a belated housewarming gift, no less), and her computer on her night off. Josh was out of the country, again - not that it bothered her, or maybe it did. She wasn't sure exactly how she felt about it, really. Either way, there was nobody to interrupt her evening, although she had a feeling Castle would be calling with an excuse to drag her out at any point because he'd "had a revelation" about an old case (when really he was just bored and procrastinating and they both knew it). All that meant was she needed to make her browsing time count.
Thus, as her email chimed with the account confirmation link, 'the_real_NikkiHeat' was born. He really would never guess. And the more she thought about it, the more fun she was determined to have with this. She could use her new alter ego to her advantage. Who better to mess with Castle than her?
She was his partner, after all.
This shouldn't bother her. It just shouldn't. She was a grown woman; a reasonably confident, intelligent grown woman. She'd faced down petty thieves, pimps, psychopaths, even the man who'd had her mother killed, and here she was worrying about this. Well, maybe not worrying, but it still bothered her.
Had she really gotten banned from her own husband's official website forum? How was that even possible? Of course she wasn't abusive or dangerous! She'd married the man after spending years successfully not shooting, strangling, or smothering him in his sleep even when he really, really deserved some combination of those punishments. A danger she was not. Who the hell did that forum moderator think she was anyway?
It wasn't like she'd started the fight, either. Not even close. There were close to a dozen posts already before she even jumped in. Why not ban them? Their words were far worse than hers, anyway. Why punish her for being the one to tell the bimbos they were being unfair and childish? Half the time she wasn't even sure they could actually read; especially since they spent most of their posts discussing her husband's wardrobe – and yes, his pants did look great on his ass most days, especially the dark jeans she'd picked out for that signing a couple weeks ago – instead of his books.
Why ban her, the person who was just offering a point of reason while the rest of the hoard was attacking him? So what if he'd looked tired at his last signing? They'd been on planes and sitting in airports for 18 hours, trying to get back from an impromptu getaway (one they'd both sorely needed) in time for him to make the signing at all. Being tired at the signing had nothing to do with his interest in meeting his adoring public, and it sure as hell had nothing to do with his interest in Nikki Heat.
He was still damn interested in Nikki Heat. More than 100% committed, in fact; mapping out more novels than either of them could expect he'd be allowed to publish. Of course, some of the novels were exclusively for her, mapped out with eager fingers and a quick tongue, but there were others, too. Ones they both hoped the public would see one day. He never told her much, not that she wanted too many spoilers anyway, but they were good – very good.
So maybe she could've been a little more delicate in her rebuttal. Maybe she didn't need to suggest they try reading the books they bought in their quest to get him to sign their boobs instead of using them as doorstops and coasters. Maybe she didn't need to ask if their other preferred reading material was the sex tips portion of Cosmopolitan magazine and ask if that was why their idea of a good book was so screwed up. But they were ripping the book to shreds simply because he hadn't smiled brightly enough for them and that wasn't fair to him or the story he'd told.
Fine. Maybe she wasn't the most objective about it, but it was probably her favorite book in the series so far. There was conflict, of course, but there was contentment and the mix of the two was so real and fantastic, she couldn't help but love it. Of course, it didn't hurt that she'd experienced most of it for the first time as soon as he'd finished the book in a series of personal, intimate readings, complete with her tackling him back with playful demands to keep going whenever he considered taking a break and leaving her hanging (he never left her hanging for very long). Even so, it was a great book, and that deserved respect those bimbos weren't giving him. So she'd intervened.
Look where that got her. Banned without even a warning.
It was fine; she had dinner to make. Castle would be back soon from another signing, probably starving, and it was her night to cook. She'd been bragging all week about trying something new and she had every intention of making good on that. The recipe she'd picked was just a little sweet and a lot spicy, something she knew he'd love. The wine matched perfectly, too, if she did say so herself. Let the bimbos and their boobs try to pick out the perfect wine. Hah.
She'd just dropped the final ingredient into the wok, delighting a little too much in the sizzle, when the door opened. He had good timing tonight.
"Hey, Castle. How was the signing?" She spared just a quick glance up from the stove only to find him already leaning against the bar watching her work. "What? No hello?" she teased in between flicking her wrist to add another spice to their meal.
The grin he was sporting only meant she was in for trouble, but she soldiered on, turning back to the stove. He'd spill when he wanted to.
"How were the groupies today? Up to their usual standards?"
Now that got a chuckle out of him. It was his 'I have a secret and I'm going to torment you with it' chuckle, but a chuckle nonetheless.
"My fans," he took care to draw out the word fan for her benefit. It never failed to make her eyes roll. "Were wonderful as always. I signed, I took pictures, I heard all about how exciting it was to meet me."
"You were the highlight of many days, I'm sure."
She flashed him a smile in reward for playing their usual game. He teased, she pretended she wasn't impressed, then they came together and it was good. Of course right now it looked like his teasing was just getting started. He had a particular look in his eyes.
"You got something else to say, Castle?" She lifted an eyebrow, gesturing with the wooden spoon. He had something else to say, definitely.
"I do, actually." His smile deepened as he abandoned his perch at the bar to join her. "But first, I have a wife to greet."
"Oh you do? Where is she then?"
His hands landed on her hips, fingers splaying to cover the curve of her ass. Oh he was in that kind of playful mood. She could work with that.
"Greet me quickly, before I burn our dinner," she ordered, bumping both her hips and her mouth against his. He loved when she multitasked.
The warm slide of his lips promised this time was no different and she found herself slumping into him a little more. They weren't always the most demonstrative of couples, but today had felt like they'd gone particularly long without touching. She'd slipped out early for breakfast with her dad before going into work for a couple hours, and he'd already left for his signing by the time she got home. A non-sleepy, unhurried kiss was exactly what she'd needed and his gentle nip at her mouth reminded her that a nice kiss was exactly what he needed, too. Some days their dorky texts just didn't do it for them.
"Long day?" she breathed finally, resting her forehead against his. Somehow her fingers had found his lapels, using them for leverage to get closer.
"Uh huh, there is only so much of me to go around. It's exhausting, Beckett."
She stole another quick kiss, since his lips were right there. "Yes, the hoard of adoring fans does tire you out." She stepped back before she could talk herself out of it. Burning their meal was not going to happen. "Go change. Your jacket needs to go to the dry cleaner."
He was almost subtle in sniffing himself. Almost. Dork. "More perfume?"
"A little," she admitted, grabbing her wooden spoon again. "Makeup, too. You had the snugglers again today?"
He was already shrugging out of his jacket when he nodded in affirmation. She watched out of the corner of her eye as he unbuttoned his cuffs and untucked his deep green dress shirt. She might have told him to go change, but she wouldn't turn down the show he was giving her in stripping down to his undershirt.
"I see you looking," he teased, leaning over to kiss her neck. "You're not as sneaky as you think, Kate. Not a bit."
Oh now there was the smug Castle again. What did he know?
"I'm not, hmm?" She turned the burner off, motioning for him to hand her their plates. "What makes you say that?"
He didn't crack. Not that she really expected him to; he liked to make her work for it, even when the desire to gloat was eating away at him. Instead his grin widened as her eyes narrowed.
"Paula told me something interesting earlier today." He practically crooned it as she poured their wine. It was normally his job – he was a self-proclaimed sommelier after all – but he'd taken it upon himself to handle their plates this time.
"Uh huh. What was that?" The kiss she pressed to his cheek as she passed him his wine was impulsive, but it earned her a genuine smile instead of his eager to irritate her smirk. She returned it readily, sliding onto her stool across from him. They were eating at the table tonight like normal people. It felt nice.
"Well apparently a fight broke out on my site's message board."
Her fork froze halfway to her mouth. Damn it. Of course someone had noticed and told him. He just had to be in the loop with everything, didn't he?
"Oh yeah?" She shoveled her food into her mouth quickly, before he could call her on another one of her tells. The coughing fit wasn't quite what she'd bargained for, though. Damn, she'd made their dinner spicy. A long pull on her wine fixed it. "Was there hair pulling, Castle?" she added finally, clearing her throat.
It was nowhere near nonchalant, but he humored her.
"Hair pulling, name calling, the works. Someone even got banned." He wiggled his eyebrows like it was the juiciest gossip he'd heard all day. It probably was, especially if it meant what she thought it meant.
This time she was better prepared. "Oh, very dramatic. However will the name-caller survive without Richard Castle dot net's fan forum." She took another bite of her dinner, smiling as his fingers stretched across the table and curled loosely around hers.
"You tell me, Kate. You are the_real_NikkiHeat, after all," he drawled, eyes lighting up as he finally spilled his secret. He'd been holding onto that all day, hadn't he. The delight was unmistakable. He had finally uncovered her secret fangirl identity and it was glorious for him.
"I have no idea what you're talking about, Castle. I haven't had an account for your site in years. I closed it after I met you. I couldn't think of nice things to say." The eye roll she threw in for good measure helped, she was sure. The eye roll always said she didn't have time for his silliness.
"You have plenty of nice things to say about me, Beckett, don't lie."
"It's not my account," she denied, sipping her wine quickly before diving into her food again. "Now, eat your dinner and forget about it."
His eyebrows wiggled in response. "Well then, if it's not your account, it'll be a surprise when I read you what they had to say about me. I think they like me."
He was already digging into his pocket for a print out. Of course he'd printed it out.
The throat clear as he unfolded the paper was a little much, but what would a Richard Castle reading be without added theatrics? She had to work to make her face bland as her own words were echoed back to her. Words she'd typed out with nearly frantic keystrokes in her haste to make the insulting woman shut up.
Just as she'd always predicted, Castle loved this entire thing. His eyes lifted to hers between paragraphs – yes, she'd written paragraphs – to gauge whether he had her in the bag or not. She narrowed her eyes at him quickly, hoping a sip of wine would hide the flush on her cheeks.
"What's your point, Babe? That's not me. But maybe I need to have a talk with whoever she is. She sounds possessive." Her eyebrows lifted as she took another bite.
"I thought the same thing," he conceded just slightly, before adding, "Until I got to this part. Ahem."
No, he couldn't have known it was her from any single paragraph. She hadn't used any details only they would've known; she hadn't seemed overly familiar with him – not any more so than the other people on the thread had – there was no way. No way in hell.
"Above all else, his words help people when they need it most. Don't undermine that because you decided to shove your boobs in his face and he didn't respond. And by the way, it's N-I-K-K-I, get it right even if you're not going to read the book."
Somehow her lip had found its way between her teeth. Damn, that did sound like her and he knew that. He remembered too much, knew her too well.
"… Okay, fine. It was me. It's not that big a deal, Castle. They were being obnoxious and I said something."
The triumphant grin he'd been sporting turned to something a little softer. It told her everything she really needed to know. It delighted him to know her handle, sure, but he loved her for being willing to go to bat for him for the small, incredibly stupid things.
"Plus, we both know you're not bored with Nikki Heat. So they need to shut up."
"Uh huh." The print out had been abandoned beside his nearly untouched meal in favor of him rounding their table to cup her cheeks in those big hands of his.
"I shouldn't have been banned, you know."
"I know." His thumb brushed under her eye soothingly. "This is why I took the liberty of making you a new account. And getting you moderator privileges."
He stole a slow kiss before she could protest, letting her taste the spicy tang of the combination of their dinner and their wine on his tongue. Hmm, if this was her reward for fighting on the internet, she might have to do it more often.
"Wait, what's my account name?" She pulled back enough to see the cheeky smile return. Oh god, what had he done?
"Just you wait, Kate, just you wait." He pecked her mouth once more before returning to his seat and finally going back to his dinner.
Whatever. She didn't need the forum anyway; she had the real thing right in front of her.
A/N: Information about Hell Hath No Fury taken from richardcastle dot net slash books/ non-derrick-storm-books/ hell-hath-no-fury.
Thanks to everyone for reading! I hope you enjoyed.