A final thanks to everyone who has favourited/followed/reviewed/read this fic, all of you are amazing. I hope you enjoy this final chapter!
Disclaimer: I don't own Castle or the characters.
Jim wasn't surprised to see his daughter enter the kitchen with Rick the next morning but he was surprised by the fact that they were holding hands.
"Good morning," Jim greeted, smiling at them both, deciding not to mention the hand holding thing.
"Good morning," both Beckett and Castle said in return as they both took a seat at the table, releasing hands as they did so.
"I made breakfast," Jim said then, turning to open the oven from which he produced two plates of food, having put them in there so they wouldn't be cold. Usually his daughter would've been up several hours ago and he's trying not to think about the fact that the reason she's probably up so late this morning is due to Castle.
"Thanks, Dad," Beckett said, smiling at her father and Jim really can't help but notice how much better, happier, she looks now and he knows that's all because of Castle and he makes a mental note to thank him later for how much of a difference he's made to Kate's life.
After placing their food in front of them, Jim made them both a cup of coffee as well placed them on the table too before he took the seat opposite them with his own cup.
Beckett found the silence while they ate slightly awkward and hoped her father and Castle didn't feel it too. She didn't know what to say and felt awkward with the knowledge that her father knew that Castle had spent the night in her bed.
Luckily, breakfast went fairly quickly and then Castle was excusing himself to take a shower, leaving her and her father alone. At the realisation that her father may want to talk to her now though, she suddenly wished Castle had taken her with him. Which turned out that that was an entirely bad thought to have because now she was thinking about being in the shower with Castle and she hoped the blush that most likely covered her cheeks went unnoticed by her father.
"So..." Jim began, trailing off, expecting Beckett to continue and now she really did wish that Castle had taken her with him.
"So?" Beckett questioned, nervous about what her dad might say now.
"You and Rick?" he asked, causing Beckett to blush again and bury her head in her hands as she groaned.
"Forget I said anything," Jim chuckled, enjoying this side of his daughter, one he'd feared he may have lost with her shooting.
"We're something," Beckett finally said, looking up at her father as she spoke.
Jim was slightly surprised by this, not that there was something going on between them, that was obvious to anyone who saw them together and he would've guessed that even if they hadn't walked in holding hands this morning. No, he was more surprised by the fact that she was admitting it.
"You're surprised?" Beckett asked, surprising him again.
"Yes and no," Jim answered, "I've seen how happy he makes you, so that part doesn't surprise me, but the fact that you're telling me about it does."
Beckett was smiling by the time her father had stopped talking, thinking about how happy Castle really does make her.
"See, he makes you happy," Jim said, pointing to his smiling daughter and smiling himself.
"He does," and again Jim was surprised by how open she was being about it. "And there's no point in trying to hide it from you, especially when we're all alone here together."
"Actually, I wanted to talk to you about that." Beckett looked confused so Jim continued, "I was thinking that if Castle's going to be here, then you won't need me. "
"I'll always need you, Dad," Beckett said, so thankful she'd had her father with her since her shooting. They'd gotten a lot closer over the summer and that's the one good thing that's come from all of this (except Castle now of course, but that was inevitable, shooting or not).
"And besides, I don't even know how long Castle is planning to stay," Beckett said, suddenly worried at the thought that Castle may want to leave.
"Well, why don't I let you two talk about that, and I'll be back later," Jim said, standing to kiss Kate's forehead and then walking out of the kitchen, past Castle who was just entering it.
"Is everything okay?" Castle asked as he took his seat next to Beckett again, looking confusedly after her father.
"Everything's fine," Beckett said as she heard the front door shut, wondering where her father was going before she stood and took Castle's hand to lead him into the living room.
Beckett sat down on the couch first then patted the seat next to her for Castle to sit, wanting to have this conversation now about whether he planned to stay or not. She wanted to tell him that she wanted him to stay and wanted to know what he thought about that. She knew he wouldn't be able to stay for long, not with a daughter at home, but she was hoping for at least a few more days with him before he had to leave.
"Are you sure everything's okay?" Castle asked again, getting slightly worried and wondering what her and her father may have talked about in his absence.
"Yes, Castle," she smiled, but she knew he was worried so she wasted no time in saying what she wanted to, "I was just wondering how long you were planning on staying?"
"How long do you want me to stay?" Castle asked nervously, suddenly worried that she'd changed her mind in wanting him here with her.
"Of course I want you here," Beckett answered quickly, done now with lying to him or hiding what she really wanted, and she reached out her hand to rest on his as she continued, "but my father was talking about leaving if you were going to be staying for a bit longer."
"And you'd be okay with that?"
"Your father leaving but me staying?"
She smiled, "I would." She knew her father wouldn't stay away for long and the idea of being here alone with Castle was something she was trying not to think about too much right now because she knew exactly what could happen if they were left alone together.
"You do realise you'd have to let me do things for you, right? Like cook you food and actually take care of you?" Castle asked, wondering if she was really ready to let him in that far, to let him into her life completely.
"Yes, Castle," she laughed, which caused him to smile, maybe she truly was ready to let him that close to her.
"And you'd let me, no arguments?"
She gave him a look.
"Okay, with almost no argument it is then," he laughed.
Beckett surprised Castle then by leaning forward and kissing him. Their lips moved together as they both lifted their hands, Beckett's hands moving to run through his hair while Castle's cupped her cheeks, pulling her closer. Beckett groaned as Castle's tongue slipped into her mouth but when they heard the front door slam shut, they both pulled back reluctantly.
"I better go talk to Alexis, tell her I'll be away for a few more days," Castle said quickly, trying to fix his hair as he stood and left, hoping Jim couldn't tell he'd just been making out with his daughter as he passed him on his way out.
"Is he staying?" her father asked as soon as Castle was out of earshot.
"He is," Beckett smiled, hoping that her father couldn't tell what he'd almost just walked in on. Luckily Jim was more focussed on how happy she looked now that Castle was back in her life and was thankful yet again that his daughter had found someone who made her so happy.
"I better go pack my things then," Jim said, leaving the room quickly before any arguments could be made by his daughter that he didn't have to leave right away. He didn't exactly want to leave her when she was still healing but he trusted Castle to look after her and wanted to give them some time alone together.
Beckett watched her father leave and wondered how things had changed so quickly in the last week, how a week and one phone call could change everything.
Beckett had picked up a book that was lying on the coffee table to read while she waited for either Castle or her father to return and it wasn't long later when she heard talking coming from one of the other rooms but she couldn't make out what was being said.
"What were you two talking about?" Beckett asked as soon as Castle entered the room again.
"I spoke to Alexis and she told me to stay out here as long as you needed me but I don't want to be away from her for too long so Jim and I have come to an arrangement, one we both hope you'll agree to," Castle said nervously, hoping Beckett would be okay with the plan they'd just come up with.
"An arrangement?" Beckett asked, having no idea what he could be talking about now.
"I'll stay here during the week and then on the weekend I'll head back home to see Alexis while your dad comes back out here to stay with you."
"I don't need to be babysat," said Beckett, annoyance creeping into her voice as she realised what they were planning. Although she was probably more upset over the fact that that would interrupt both of their lives as they tried to care for her instead of the fact that she needed someone to care for her in the first place.
"We know, but at least for now, we'd both feel better if you had someone here with you."
Castle was worried that he'd overstepped when she sat there for a minute, not saying anything, but then a smile was spreading across her face.
"Okay," she smiled, reaching out to grab his hand again like she had before.
"Okay," he smiled, squeezing her hand in return.
It was not long later and Jim was all packed and ready to go. He was going to head back to the city for the week but they'd agreed that he'd come back out here on Friday evening so Castle could go see Alexis and his mother. He'd spend the weekend with them before returning to the cabin on Sunday when Jim would leave again.
Beckett had argued again that she didn't need someone with her all the time but they'd convinced her, at least for now, to let them both take turns in staying with her.
"Are you sure it's okay that I go?" Jim asked one last time as he put his suitcase in the car and came to stand by the front door.
"I'm sure Dad, we'll be fine here," Beckett said, smiling as she kissed her father's cheek as they stood by his car.
"You'll look after her?" Jim asked, turning to Castle as he spoke.
"Always," Castle assured her father.
"I'll see you two on Friday, then," Jim said, before giving his daughter one last hug, shaking Castle's hand and then he was climbing into his car and with a wave, he was gone.
"What now?" Beckett asked as they walked back into the cabin, not entirely certain what to do now that they were properly alone for the first time since everything had changed.
"Now, I make you lunch and we spend the rest of the day cuddling on the couch while watching movies."
Later that evening, as they lay snuggled together in Beckett's bed, Castle did something that he'd been wanting to do since he'd arrived, but had lacked the courage to do until now.
"I love you," he whispered just behind her ear as she lay in his arms, her back pressed up against his front while his arms were her around her, holding her close.
He held still after he'd spoken, not sure if Beckett had even heard to words but then she was moving, picking up his arm from where it rested on her stomach. She moved the hand up to her lips, hoping he could feel her smile as she placed a soft kiss on his hand.
"I love you too," she whispered.
Castle wanted nothing more than to spin her around then so they were face to face and then he'd show her just how much he loved her using his lips and his body and his hands instead of his words. But he didn't. They'd talked and agreed to take things slow so instead, he placed a single kiss on the back of her neck as he pulled her even closer to him.
"Goodnight," he whispered.
"Goodnight," she whispered in return, both so very glad that Castle had made that phone call and they were now where they were always meant to be, together.
The end! I hope you had fun reading this fic, I certainly enjoyed writing it. Let me know what you thought :)