For The Love of Kate Chapter 1 Re edited

So sorry about all the confusion on this. This was brought to my attention by lifeisamystery and I am so thankful for her help and advice. The first chapter justdidn't fit the story, a couple of chapters were the same. So I decided to pull those chapters down and correct those mistakes. Will re post each chapter and I hope you all still be with me.

A/N : Completely A/U. This chapter is set pre -Season 4: 01 "Rise.' Entry for 2015 Castle Summer Hiatus Ficathon. Time is a couple of weeks before Kate's return to work. For this chapter Jim and Kate are at their cabin while Kate recuperates .

Summary : Entry for 2015 Castle Summer Hiatus Ficathon . Kate is having strong feelings for Rick , but will she admit it ? Can she deny them? Although, missing him, will she confront him with these feelings? After three months of radio silence from her, will he still be waiting for her? What has Rick been up to?

Shout Out to GeekMom, who beta ed this for me. Chris, thank you for all of your support. Without your friendship, support and nurturing me along, I never would have gotten this far. You are invaluable.

Disclaimer: The only thing I own is Seasons 1-6 on DVDs and a great love for the story and characters that Andrew Marlowe created and the people who portray these wonderful characters.

The brilliance of the full moon lured Kate to the Adirondack chairs on the deck overlooking the lake. She had come out seeking solace, peace after having wakened from the same nightmare that she'd had every night for the last three months. Nightmares that woke her screaming, gasping for air, with trembling hands and copious amounts of sweating.

Taking deep breaths and exhaling slowly was making her chest and lungs burn, trying to get her breathing under control before she passed out from hyperventilating.

Squeezing her eyes shut, she tried to drown out the noises around her, the white noises that usually she found comforting and gave her a sense of peace. The sounds of the fish splashing in the lake as they leaped for bugs that landed on the water's surface, the distant hum of a boat across the lake, and the crickets chirping their usual cadence usually brought her a sense of peace.

But tonight, those sounds seemed so discordant, shattering the tranquility, becoming magnified and grating on her last nerve. She wanted to go home and wondered what Castle was doing right now. Was he thinking of her, perhaps looking at the moon? Was he missing her as much as she was missing him?

She startled at the feeling of gentle fingers on her arm. She turned and saw her dad standing there, offering her a cup of Chamomile tea and the throw blanket from the couch.

" I thought you might need these. " he said , wrapping the warm blanket around her shoulders .

" Thanks, dad. I'm sorry if I woke you." She hated that he felt like he had to be here. She was worried about him. He was getting older, still in good health, but still...

" You didn't. I was awake reading. You're trembling, it must have been another bad one. "

" Yeah, it was ." she said, cradling the mug in both hands, letting the warmth seep through her cold fingers.

" Wanna talk about it ?" he asked, concern and worry deeply etched in his eyes and in the lines on his face

Finally, managing to get the mug of hot tea to her lips, she took a sip, relishing in the warmth it provided.

Shrugging with downcast eyes, she replied, " It's the same. Always the same. Mom and Roy... I just wish they would stop. I wish I could solve mom's case and we could finally have some closure and get justice for her. And I will, someday. "

" Katie, don't you think that it's time to let that go? Look, what that has done to you. You were shot in the chest and I almost lost you because of it. Do you honestly think she'd want that? No! I can tell you that she wouldn't. What do you think she'd say to you if she were here right now? Do you think this is what I want for you? I love you, Katie , and I'm so very proud of you, the woman you've become and wherever your mother is, I'm sure she is, too, but I don't want to see you throw your life away chasing after this! You have nothing to prove. Not t your mom, not to me or anyone else. I want justice too, but. not at such high personal cost. " Jim retorted, vehemently.

She was a bit taken aback by the tone in his voice. This was a side of her dad that she hadn't seen since she was twelve and to say that she was a bit surprised was an understatement .

"Dad, I don't know what you want me to do here. What do you want me to say? Why are you so angry with me all of a sudden? You know why I do this."

" I'm not angry at you honey, I'm just so worried and I didn't mean for that to come across like that. You're my only child and I love you. We've already lost your mother, please don;t let me lose you, too. You're all I have left and it would kill me to lose you, too."

" You're not going to lose me, dad ." she said, taking his hand.

" You don't know that, honey. And they damn near killed you. Walk away, while you still can."

" You sound just like Castle now ." she said, shivering just at the memory of a shared kiss seven months ago. A distant memory that she held onto and would never forget. A memory she desperately wanted to live again. If there was any chance at all...

" Rick asked you to do that? "

" Yeah. The night before Captain Montgomery was killed. He came to my apartment to fill me in on some of the clues he and the boys had figured out on Raglan's murder case. He said whomever was responsible was going to kill me. He said that we couldn't win this and asked me to walk away."

" And he was right. They did try to kill you. He's a smart man. I like Rick and now I respect him even more and I couldn't agree with him more."

Kate nodded sadly. "We had a huge fight and in the heat of the moment, said things that hurt each other and I threw him out of my apartment and my life. He accused me of hiding from this in nowhere relationships with men I don't love. It both hurt and made me angry. In retrospect, now I can see where he was right about that part. I never loved Josh. At least, not in that way."

"I never liked that guy." Jim said.

"Why? What did you have against Josh?"

"I never really had anything against him, sweetheart. You just didn't look happy with him and as a parent, that's all I want for you. I just want to see you happy."

Taking a sip of tea, her face twisting into a grimace at the now cool and sweet herbal taste. Placing the cup and saucer on the small table beside them, and wrapping the blanket more securely around her shoulders, she picked up the story where she left off.

"Seven months ago, when Hal Lockwood kidnapped Ryan and Esposito, Castle and I went undercover and played drunken lovers to save them. Lockwood had an armed guard at the entrance to the abandoned warehouse where they were being held and we needed to get past him. There was no time to waste and if we called in the troops, they'd be as good as dead. So Castle and I decided to play drunken lovers to lure Lockwood's goon away from the door until he got close enough to be taken down. The goon was approaching us and I thought we were in danger, so I went for my gun, but Castle grabbed my hand, spun me around and kissed me. Out of the boyfriends I've ever had, I've never been kissed like that. That kiss awakened something deep inside me. I never thought I was capable of feeling that."

Now why the hell had she just confessed that to her dad? Other than just bring her boyfriends around to introduce them she had never talked about things like this. Matters of this nature usually was something you discussed with your mom, or best friend, another woman.

Jim chuckled, " Katie, you're in love with Rick. You're a young, vibrant woman. Why wouldn't you experience that?"

Kate sat up, ram rod straight and gave him a dubious look.

" Oh, don't give me that look. What? Am I supposed to be so old and blind that I can't see what's right in front of me?" he asked.

" N- -N- No, but I … I..." she stammered .

" It's written all over you, honey. Has been for quite a while now. It's in your voice when you talk about him, I see it in your face and I saw the way you two looked at each other at Roy's funeral so don't try and deny it."

There was a heavy silence that hung between them and he didn't have to look to know that she was blushing furiously. The same way and the same look Johanna had when she was embarrassed.

Kate let out a sigh of frustration. " I didn't realize that I'm so transparent."

" I'm sorry, sweetheart. I didn't mean to embarrass you, it's just that I know you. Perhaps better than you know yourself."

" Okay. Fine! Yes, I am in love with him. I think I've always loved him. As silly as it sounds, as much as I sound like a love struck teenager right now, I miss him so damned much it hurts. A nightmare drove me out here, but when I saw that moon, I wish he were here with me and we could experience this together, not wondering if he's gazing at the same moon thinking of me. I know I sound like a sap…"

" Not a sap honey. A woman in love and there's nothing sappy about that. When was the last time you spoke to him?"

Sighing heavily, she replied, " Two days after my shooting."

Incredulous, Jim asked, " Why? He must be worried sick! "

" Things are complicated, dad. "

" Only as complicated as you make them. How complicated can it be? Does he know how you feel? Does he feel the same way you do? "

Lowering her gaze and picking at her nails, she nodded. " When I got shot and he knocked me to the ground, he told me that he loved me."

" You were still with Josh." it was a statement, not a question.

" Yeah . Things had not been going well between us and hadn't been for months. His long stretches of absences while he was doing his Doctors Without Borders missions was taking it's toll. I admired him for that, but it wasn't enough. I was more alone in that relationship than I was before. In retrospect, I think I got into that relationship to get Castle's attention. I liked and admired Josh, but never loved him. Each time Josh went out of the country, Castle and I just seemed to get closer. I should have broken it off with Josh after our kisses in the alley, but when Josh decided not to go to Haiti, I thought our relationship deserved another chance. "

" But you couldn't let Castle go. "

" No. I felt so bad. I knew it was wrong and I tried to deny the feelings I was having for Castle and tried to pour all those feelings into Josh and our relationship. I hated myself for it, but I found myself comparing Rick's kiss to Josh's, the way I felt in Rick's arms to what I felt in Josh's. There was no comparison. If I get the chance at Castle again, I'll never deny what we have ever again."

" Did Josh ever suspect? "

The corners of her mouth turned down and she shrugged. "I don't know for sure. I think he might have suspected something, but he had no reason to. Other than that one kiss, we never did anything and Josh never knew about that, but after his near trip to Haiti, we began to argue more, often escalating into full blown fights at the drop of a hat... I've never gotten over that kiss and I guess I never will.'

With a shake of his head, he replied, " No, you won't. I remember the first time I kissed your mother. It was our fifth date outside La Lanterna di Vittorio in the Village. I was just starting my law career and couldn't afford the higher priced restaurants. It was her birthday and I wanted it to be so special. It was jazz night so after dinner we went downstairs and listened to the music. There wasn't enough room to dance so we just held hands and listened to the band. We didn't leave until 2:30 the next morning. It was so cold when we left and I pulled her close to shelter her from the wind. Still drunk on the ambiance and the music, I cradled her face in my hands and kissed her. In that moment of time, I felt as though I had been struck by lightning. Time seemed to stand still and rush forward at the same time and I knew that she was the one and my life would never be the same again. Life's too short, Katie. If Rick is the one you want, grab onto to him and hold on for all it's worth. There is nothing any more satisfying than that.."

" I miss her so much, dad. "

"I know you do. So do I and I wish that I could tell you that it gets easier, but we both know that it doesn't. That's a pain that never goes away. It's a part of us, Katie, but it doesn't mean that we have to stop living, just figure out how to move on. So what is it about Rick? Are you afraid that he will wait for you or that he won't? "

" I don't know, dad ... I'm afraid that he'll be so hurt and angry that he won't give me a chance. I just want what you and mom had, you know?"

" Katie, what your mom and I had was real and lasting, but it wasn't perfect. Nobody's is. We had our differences, we had fights like married people do, but we don't belong on a pedestal. If Rick Castle is the one for you, if he's the one that you can't live without, if he's the one who makes you happy, I'll be happy. But you're not going to know until you really put yourself out there."

" So, you think I should call him?"

"Your physical and mental health is the number one priority at this time. As to your own personal happiness, that's your decision and if that's Rick, so be it. But you owe it to yourself to find out, but you're not going to find out if you don't risk it."

" I want to, dad, but I'm so scared. " .

" Scared of what?"

" What if it doesn't work out? What if he's moved on without me? What if he does wait for me? He's been married twice and neither one worked out."

" No one ever promised that we'd be infallible, Katie. We're human and make mistakes and bad choices. That doesn't mean that he's incapable of having a lasting relationship, it just means he hasn't found it, yet. At least, he risked it. And he got a beautiful daughter out of one of them. "

Smiling, Kate said, " Yeah, he did and he's a great dad. He's done an amazing job raising her all by himself and I love him for that. He loves her so much. "

"That speaks volumes to me, Katie. I remember the first time they placed you in my arms when you were just minutes old. You blinked those beautiful green eyes up at me and it was like I had been struck by lightning all over again and you had me wrapped around your finger from that point on. "

"Mmm. Looks like Alexis and I have more in common than I thought."

"Oh? How's that, sweetheart?

"We're both daddy's girls." she replied, smiling at him and tossing a wink his way.

"Well, thank God for daddy's girls and I'm so glad you're mine."

" I love you, dad. " she said, leaning in to kiss his cheek.

" I love you too, sweetheart. Don't hold his past against him. As to if he'll wait or not, well , I think it's your choice in how to handle that. I'd hate to think that you missed an opportunity to find real, unconditional love and happiness and lifetime joy because you were afraid to risk it... I think you owe it to him and yourself to find out."

" Wow, dad. You sound like you're really pulling for Rick... "

" No. I'm pulling for you. But I think he's a better choice than your ninth grade crush, the punk rocker. What was his name? "

Kate's stitches pulled but she couldn't stop the laughter that bubbled forth. " Bobby, and you don't have anything to worry about that happening. I hear that he's happily married with six kids living in Minnesota now. But you really sound as though you really like Rick. "

" I don't know him very well, but he does impress me. He's a good man, Katie, an honorable man and he loves you and you love him. My advice is to call him and talk to him. Don't leave him shut out. I'm sure he's worried sick about you. If you don't want to tell him where we're at, at least tell him how you're doing and that may give you some idea of how he's feeling. Don't leave him hanging .out there. He deserves to know something."

" I promise to think about it, okay ? "

" Okay . I'd say that the ball is in your court now, Katie Just don't wait to long to make your pitch. . Well , that's it for me. Think I'll go to bed now. " Jim said, rising.

" Good night, dad and thank you ."

Leaning down, he kissed the crown of her head. "That's what fathers are for. Just try and get some rest tonight, okay ? "

" I will. I love you, dad. "

" Love you, too."

Well, that had been awkward. At least, at first.

She had never discussed her feelings about her boyfriends before. She'd just brought them around and introduced them expecting her dad to just accept it. But then again, Rick was not just one of them. He was different. Her feelings for him were different.

She and her dad hadn't talked like this in a long time. As awkward as it seemed, she thought it had also been therapeutic for both of them.

Sighing, she picked up her tea cup and headed into the kitchen. Maybe, if she returned to reading sleep would come.

Emptying the remainder of the tea into the sink she rinsed the cup and set it aside to be washed in the morning.

On the way to her room as she was passing the living room her gaze fell to the coffee table.

Since they had come out here for her recuperation she had been re reading Rick's Nikki Heat books.

That was odd. " Naked Heat " was there on the corner of the table. She could have sworn that she had left it in her room when she finished it night before last . She lovingly ran her fingers down the front of the book, tracing the letters with her fingers. She loved Rick's books and felt comforted when she read them. Reading them made her feel closer to him. It kind of took the sting out of missing him so much. Kind of, anyway. But what was Rick's book doing in here when she clearly remembered putting it on the book shelf in her room?

Well, maybe she had been mistaken and accidentally left it there. Clutching the book to her chest, she continued to her room, placing the book back in it's proper place on the shelf and moved to straighten the rumpled covers on the bed before settling back in.

Plumping the pillows behind her back she reached for her copy of " Heat Wave. " Spying her cell phone on the table next to it, she hesitated and picked it up instead. She opened her contact list and found his number, which was completely unnecessary since she knew the number by heart now. The temptation to just do it was overpowering and she was just about to push the number 4, which would automatically dial his number. Her thumb hovered over the number, but she just couldn't do it. Not yet.

Frustrated, she got up and put the device back on the dresser. Her dad's advice made things seem so simple. She needed to get bck to the city and try and talk to him if he'd even see her.

Returning to bed, she picked up " Heat Wave " and began reading where she left off earlier that afternoon - page 100. As she read the written words on the page, she could almost hear his voice, as if he were here reading the pages to her. If she called him now after all this time would he even talk to her? She berated herself over and over again for not keeping him in the loop. If she called now, would he come? What if he's already moved on?

At page 105, the tears flowed freely and unchecked down her cheeks. She marked her place and closed the book when she reached the middle of page 106, a very descriptive part of the scene where Nikki and Rook were making love. Oh, to feel as free to love Rick the same way Nikki loved Rook. She hoped that one day she would. And when that day came, she'd show him in reality just what that would be like. And she couldn't wait to reenact that same scene with the real them instead of the fictional them.

Turning off the light, she slid beneath the covers and positioned herself on her good side to watch the numbers on the digital clock on the nightstand click over, one agonizing minute at a time.

The last time she looked at the clock it read 4:00 a.m. At 6:00, she gave up all hope for sleep. Her normal morning routine began at this time with a mile long walk on the beach and return to have a light breakfast with her dad, he would then take the boat out to fish for a while, giving Kate some space to meditate or do light yoga. He would return about noon when they would have lunch and then retire to take naps and read or watch what little tv they were able to pick up.

Standing in front of her closet she pulled a pair of capris and a tee-shirt out. Gone were the frumpy, gauzy sun dresses she had to wear because of their looseness, but had almost been a necessity when they first arrived. Eager to get outside and get on with her daily routine, she dressed as quickly and as quietly as she could not wanting to disturb her dad if he were still sleeping.

As much as she loved spending time with her dad, she really enjoyed this time alone to gather her thoughts and clear her head. Her thoughts turned to the conversation she'd had with her dad last night about Rick. Rick was always in her thoughts and those thoughts had been instrumental in her healing process.

In the beginning, when they'd just arrived, she'd barely been able to make it to the bathroom and back, each step was so full of pain and she'd been on so many different medications that she stayed under the influence and drugged up that she would sleep much of the time only to wake to horrifying nightmares, nightmares that still haunted and impeded her sleep.

Little by little she had been weaned off most of the pain medications and had begun physical therapy. With each agonizing, pain filled step, thoughts of Rick had kept her moving forward when she had felt like giving up and she was not a quitter. In Rick's eyes, she was extraordinary, only she wasn't, but he thought so. She remembered what he'd said to her during the Dr. Leeds murder investigation and Jimmy Moran, the mob boss under the witness protection program and her ex-boyfriend, Federal Agent Will Sorrenson had been shot and she had blamed herself for it. "Most people come up against a wall, they give up. Not you. You don't let go. You don't back down. That's what makes you extraordinary. It was was things like that that he'd said to her over the years that had inspired her and encouraged her to keep moving forward so that she could return. Get on with her life, return to the 12th, return to him.

Now as she walked down the beach, she realized that she had been so lost in thought that she'd lost track of how far she'd come. She should probably turn back now. By now her dad would be up, probably nursing a cup of coffee and preparing breakfast. With that thought in mind, she turned and headed back.

As she turned to head back, a dozen memories of Castle bringing her coffee every morning, the thrill she felt every time his fingers accidentally? brushed against hers in the transfer, the closeness they'd been so close to exploring, an unexpected, passionate kiss shared in an alley that left her weak in the knees and wanting so much more, his plea begging her to stay with him and his "I love you, Kate" as he held her while she was bleeding out all came rushing back to her.

She returned to the cabin an hour later to find her dad in the kitchen slicing fruit for their breakfast.

" Good . " she said, moving into the kitchen to join him. " Sleep well? "

" Fine, I guess, but it looks like you didn't. Make any decisions about what we talked about last night? "

Reaching for the carafe to the coffee maker, she rinsed it out and began filling it with water. Dr. Kovak's had removed the dietary restrictions last week and she was now allowed caffeine in moderation.

"Gee, thanks, dad." she said, teasing him about the remark about the way she looked. "I miss him, dad. More than I ever thought I would. I almost called him last night after our talk."

"Oh? Why didn't you?"

"Fear. Fear of not knowing if he's moved on or not. Fear of what it'll do to me if he rejects me. Dad, I don't think I can handle it if either of those things happens. You were right last night when you said that I'm in love with him. I've been in love with him for a long time now, it's just been that it's always been so complicated between us."

"Like I said last night. It's only as complicated as the two of you make it. So, uncomplicate it."

"Yeah. That's why I've decided to go back to the city tomorrow. I'm going to take the risks."

Setting the knife down on the counter, he turned to look at her. " Are you sure, honey? You're still under a doctor's care."

" All the more reason to go back, dad." she said, spooning the coffee grounds into the basket. " We both know that it's only a matter of time before he releases me. The extra trips into the city for doctor's appointments and therapy sessions have been hard on both of us. I just think it would be a lot easier to manage them from there where we'll be closer in. And besides, you have a law practice to get back to. This has been financially draining. " she said.

" I'm doing okay and nothing matters more to me than your health."

"I'm doing fine, dad. And you'll only be a phone call away."

" Okay. If you're sure that's what you want. " Jim said, carrying their plates to the table.

" It is, dad and everything will be fine, you'll see." she said, carrying their coffees to the table and joining him.

" You know, if this is going to be our last day here, I think I'll take the boat out for some fishing. Maybe, I'll get lucky and catch our dinner."

" Yeah! That would be great, dad. Really great. " She liked fresh caught fish, but it was hard to get excited about when she had so much of it. At least three times a week for the last two months! Now, she could get excited about a cheeseburger, an order of fries, and a strawberry shake from Remey's.

When they had finished breakfast, Jim took his plate and cup to the sink and went to get his "lucky " fishing hat and Kate poured herself another cup of coffee. She had just sat back down when her dad came back into the room.

" Hey, honey. Have you seen that book I was reading? "

" No, I haven't, but if you'll tell me what it is then maybe I can help you find it." she replied, taking a sip of coffee.

" Naked Heat. " It was sitting right here on the coffee table when I went to bed last night."

Wait. Wait. What? What did he just say?

Kate choked on her coffee, causing her to spew coffee all over the table and herself, as she gasped for air.

" You okay, honey ?"

No, no, she wasn't! She was quite sure that she'd never be okay again. Her dad was reading Rick's book based on her and laced with steamy sex scenes. It had been one thing to just talk about her feelings for Castle, but to know that he was reading Castle's books based on her was quite another. What the hell ? Her dad never read anything but literature and law books. Never, ever fiction!

" Katie? Honey, are you okay?"

It took several deep breaths before she could utter a word, much less answer his question.

" Y-you're reading " Naked Heat?" But … I thought you only read Literature ."

" Normally, I do, but you left it laying on the coffee table when you went to lay down for a nap. I was curious to see what this book was about."

" When did you start and how far have you gotten? " she asked, her voice still trembling a bit.

" Two nights ago, I guess. I think I stopped at chapter 8. "

Oh, lovely! If he had read that far it meant he had already read the steamy sex scene that took place on Nikki's rooftop. Could this possibly get any worse?

" You do know that it's all made up, right? Rick and I have never …"

Jim guffawed. " Not yet, anyway? Yes, sweetheart. I can distinguish the difference between the real and fictional worlds. Even if there were some truth to it, you're both grown, consenting adults and what you do or don't do is not anyone else's business. But, I gotta say that when you two get together, I hope you don't wait too long. I'd like to iive long enough to see grandchildren." he said, smiling mischievously at her with a wink.

"Dad! Well, since you've read this far, you may as well read the rest of the story. I'll go get it for you. "

Turning to go retrieve " Naked Heat " from the bookshelf in her room, she asked over her shoulder. " So, is this the first of Rick's books that you've read?"

" Actually, no. When you were about fifteen we were planning on coming up here for the summer. Your mom had heard about this amazing new author at work. It was Rick. The day before we were leaving, she'd heard that he was going to be doing a book signing at Strand's Books. We couldn't leave the city before she had an autographed copy of " In A Hail of Bullets. " We stood in line for over two hours before she got her copy. When we got up here, we sat on the deck and read that book together."

" That's weird. I don't remember that. "

Jim chuckled. " That's because you and your friend, Maddie were too busy chasing guys down at the beach."

Giggling, she returned from her room carrying " Naked Heat."

" Touche' dad! You're probably right about that one."

" I know I'm right. "

Taking his hands, she placed the book in them. " You know what, dad? I want to give you this book as a gift."

" What? No, Katie. I can't take this. He wrote this book for you. It's even autographed to you."

" Dad, it's not like I can't get another one. I want you to have this one. "

" I'm touched and I love you, Katie. Thank you!"

" You're welcome and I love you, too. Now get in that boat and go catch us a couple of good ones for dinner." she said, playfully pushing him toward the door.

" I won't be long."

" Take as much time as you like, dad. I'm fine."

After he left, Kate put her plan into action and it felt so good to redirect her focus. Earlier, she had dreaded another fish dinner, but now a fish dinner sounded as good as steak.

As creepy as it had been to learn that her dad was reading Rick's " Heat Wave " books with her as his inspiration, she kind of understood her dad's interests in them, but at the same time it still creeped her out.

Having finished her morning round of yoga and pushing herself more than she normally did and having had little sleep the night before, she popped " Forbidden Planet " into the DVD player and curled up on the couch.

That had been the most fun impromptu date she could ever recall having. After discovering that he had never seen the movie, learning later that he was just messing with her when he said he'd never seen it, she offered to take him, not accepting " no " for an answer.

The evening had been her treat complete with candy and popcorn and soft drinks. When he had asked about going to Remey's afterward, she had shut him down by telling him that now he was pushing it. It wasn't until about the middle of the movie when she reached for the popcorn that he'd been hogging that she noticed that he was mouthing the words of the movie word for word. Oh, he was so busted!

When the movie let out, she called him out on it. He admitted that he'd just wanted to go with her to see the movie, asked for her forgiveness and as penance, he'd buy her dinner at Remey's plus dessert, plus the beers. She had been so tired that she said no, but Castle turned the tables on her and wasn't going to accept no for a

While she had been reluctant to go at first, she was glad she went. It had been fun with no talk of Joe McUsic or any of the other cases they had solved recently and no mention of significant others. Just talk and it had been nice. Now whenever she binge watched the show, which was a lot, it reminded her of that night.

Just a few weeks prior to that was when they'd kissed in the alley. That kiss haunted her dreams and the memory of that kiss had been her saving grace during this time, propelling her to move forward in her recuperation, encouraged her. She remembered that night in vivid detail. The electric shocks that coursed through her body when he'd wrapped his arm around her waist and pulled her to him, causing her heart to seemingly beat out of her chest causing knees to go weak, the way her body felt pressed against his,, heat consuming her, setting her on fire as his tongue slicked past her parted lips, seeking, exploring. She vaguely remembered moaning his name and going back for more when that kiss broke.

The hum of the electric knife and the pungent odors of fish and lemon juice awakened Kate. Glancing at the clock on the DVD player she was surprised to see that it was 4:30 in the afternoon. Almost time to start dinner.

Yawning, Kate rose and stretched feeling a bit disoriented.

She found her dad in the kitchen, filleting the fish he had caught and was preparing to put them on the grill.

" Nice catch, dad." she said, leaning in to kiss his cheek.

" Sorry I woke you, sweetheart."

" Mmm, I'm not. If I slept any longer there would be no hope for sleep tonight." she said, taking a bottle of water from the fridge. Uncapping the water bottle, she took several healthy swigs. " You have a few minutes, dad? "

" Sure honey. Is everything okay? "

" Everything is fine . I just want to talk for a few minutes, but I need to go get something first. Have a seat. I'll be right back. " she said as she was leaving the room.

" This sounds serious. " Jim said, wiping his hands on a dish towel as he went to sit at the kitchen table .

" You'll see. " she called over her shoulder.

She returned a few moments later carrying a gift wrapped in aluminum foil. "I couldn't find any wrapping paper so this will have to do,"

" What's this? It's not my birthday or Father's Day." Jim said , as she handed him her offering.

" No. Just open it, dad. I think you'll understand then. "

Smiling, she watched for his reaction as he fumbled opening it.

His jaw fell slack and his eyes widened in wonder. Jim's vision blurred as tears pricked his eyes.

There was a moment stunned silence. " Katie? I haven't seen this in years! " He ran trembling fingers over the worn jacket of ' In a Hail of Bullets. '

' Yeah. I know. That's because when we were going through her things I took it. I had no idea that you were reading it together or I never would have taken it without asking first. I'm sorry I did that. I took it and read it over and over again as you can probably tell. Reading it made me feel closer to her somehow. That book saw me through some very dark days after her death."

" I am sorry, honey. I shouldn't have left you alone to get through that by yourself. I should have been there for you instead of drowning my sorrows in the bottom of a bottle."

"No, dad! No recriminations here. Not now and not ever." she said, laying a comforting hand on his shoulder. "I hope this book brings you as much comfort as it has me." Kate lowered her gaze and picked at her nail before she continued. " Last night, you were almost encouraging me to go after Rick... "

" Still am. Why are you asking? I thought you loved Rick."

"Oh, I do."

"Are you having second thoughts now, Katie? I'm afraid I don't understand. I thought we talked about this last night.""

" Dad. I'd love to run full force at him, but I can't. When mom died something inside of me changed. I don't know if I'm capable of having the type of relationship I want until I solve mom's murder. I'm too broken. He's too good for that and he deserves so much more than a fragmented, broken shard of me. I don't want to go for him until I can give him my entire being. "

Jim took her hand in his. "Do you trust him, Katie?"

"Of course, I do. I just want what's best for him, for us."

"You are what's best for him and he's what's best for you. You love him, he loves you. Don't let your mom's death stand in the way of your happiness, honey. Your mom's death changed both of us, but that doesn't mean that we have to stop living. Your happiness is all she and I want. You said that it's complicated between the two of you, only it isn't. You both love and trust each other, everything else will work itself out. If you love Rick, then go for it. Now, we better get these fish on if we want to have them for dinner."

They worked in tandem preparing dinner and the clean up afterward. At 8:00 p.m. she kissed her dad goodnight and retired to her room and pack for the trip home in the morning. As much as she loved the cabin and spending time with her dad, it would be so good to be home. Home sounded like Heaven on Earth. The only way to find out if he still loved her was to talk to him face to face and she would do that once she got home.


A/N I cannot apologize enough for the mix up on the order of the chapters and I'm working on straightening that up. I'll begin to re edit Chapter 3 either later today or tomorrow and will re post as soon as I'm done. I have began Chapter 5 and I'm really excited about writing it. Thank you all so much for your patience while I do this. So sorry. I tried to write over the italics and it just didn't work. Not sure what happened with this, either.