Kate Beckett adored their daughter. Lily Johanna Beckett Castle was their little miracle, born after that horrible time when she and Rick were chasing down LokSat and almost died. From the moment she had entered their lives, they had been so happy.
But now she was a four year old unhappy little girl. Kate knew she loved her little brothers – Jake and Reece had just turned one – but she was feeling sad that so much of her mom and dad's time was spent taking care of them. Rick and Kate had always made sure that at least one of them spent some one on one time with her every day, but the logistics of taking care of two little babies and a little girl sometimes meant the little girl felt left out. Kate wondered if it was the fact that she had had her parents to herself for a while, or was it the fact that while Kate was on bedrest with the twins, she and Lily had fallen into a pattern of cuddling together and reading or watching television or napping.
Whatever it was, Kate had decided to fix the problem. She was going to take Lily somewhere, just the two of them. She'd call Martha or her dad to come hang out with Rick and the boys, and she and her little girl would do something fun together. She thought about what the perfect activity could be – mani/pedis? A trip to the park? A lunch at a nice little restaurant? And then she hit on the perfect outing for her and her girl. When she shared the plans with Rick, his face lit up and he said, "Wow, Kate, she'll love that! It's perfect." He kissed her quickly on the lips because Jake decided that was the moment to let them know he needed something.
Kate was able to put her plans in motion very quickly. That was one of the great things about her job; she had decided to stop being a Captain and she had moved on to teaching at the Police Academy. The hours were regular, she could be home with her family in time for dinner, and she wasn't in danger every time she left the house. She checked, and found out that Saturday would be perfect – Martha was available and would come be with Rick while she took Lily out.
Saturday soon arrived, and she went upstairs to wake Lily up and tell her about the plans. As she walked into her daughter's room, she smiled. Every night before she went to bed, she would spend at least five minutes deciding which doll or stuffed animal got to sleep in the bed with her. It was a ritual her mom had had with her, and she and Rick decided to follow. Last night, it was Monkey Bunkey's turn. It always made Kate's heart warm when she watched her daughter play with her big sister's favorite stuffed animal. She had worried that Alexis would feel left out when she and Rick had kids, but that hadn't been the case – Alexis had been the first one to squeal with excitement when they made the announcement. The girls may have had a huge age difference, but it didn't matter to them.
Kate watched her daughter sleep for a few more minutes, then sat down on the bed near her hip. She leaned over to kiss her forehead, and said, "Time to wake, Lily-bug. We've got something special to do today!" Lily's eyes popped open in excitement, which made Kate laugh.
"What, Mama, what? What are we doing today?" Lily jumped up and threw her arms around Kate's neck.
"Well, my beautiful girl, what would you think of a Mama-Lily day at a Mets game?" Yes, Lily Castle had inherited her mom's love of baseball and the New York Mets, so Kate's plan was for them to go to a game together.
Oh, Mama, yes! Just us?"
"Yes, just us. Daddy will stay home with Jake and Reece, and you and I are going to eat hot dogs and ice cream, and root for the Mets", Kate told her with a grin. Lily bounced up and down in Kate's lap.
Soon, she and Lily were dressed in matching Mets jerseys – throwback 1986 Gary Carters. Carter had been Kate's favorite player when she was a girl, and when Lily was born, her grandpa Jim had given her a Mets onesie with Carter's number on it. And then for each birthday, she'd get a new, bigger shirt. Grandpa Jim had showed her videos of the Hall of Fame catcher, and Lily loved him too. Of course, she had her favorite player on the current team, but she often chose to wear her Carter jersey "just like mommy".
When they were ready to go, Rick, Jake and Reece waved good-bye. Kate had decided she and Lily would take the subway to the game. It added another level to the fun to travel to the game with lots of other fans. A little boy noticed Lily was wearing a Carter shirt and pointed out that his dad was wearing a Keith Hernandez shirt – Carter and Hernandez had been teammates on the 1986 World Champion team – and he and Lily hoped that someday they'd get to root for a World Series winning team. Some of the fans on the train thought that this was their year, while others thought the Mets needed another good pitcher or others thought they needed another bat. Because she spent so much time with her Grandpa Jim, Lily knew what the other fans were talking about, and she threw in her ideas. Kate grinned at her daughter – even at four years old, she knew enough about baseball to join in the conversation, and she wasn't too shy to do so. In that respect, she was all Castle/Rodgers; she was comfortable talking to anyone.
When they arrived at the stadium, the new friends separated. Kate knew that Lily loved any kind of responsibility so she let her hold their tickets. The ticket guy grinned as he thanked her for holding them bar code up. "You must be a big fan, young lady. You know exactly what to do!" Lily's chest puffed up with pride. Kate smiled her thanks at the man and they went off to go to their seats.
The two Mets fans had a lovely day together. They ate their hot dogs, drank some lemonade, and cheered when the Mets did well. Lily asked her mother about going to games with her dad and mom, and Kate told her lots of stories. They talked about what was happening during this game, too. At some point, Lily ended up sitting in her mother's lap, and they talked about how much Grandpa Jim would love today's game, if Kate thought that daddy would be a Mets fan someday, and then Lily wondered if Jake and Reece would love the Mets someday too. When the Mets ended up winning in the bottom of the ninth after their favorite player drove in the winning run, it was the perfect end to the perfect day. And when they returned to the loft and Lily was able to tell her dad and her grandma all about it, Kate smiled as she watched. A day at a baseball game might be a slightly unusual mother-daughter day, but it worked for her and Lily. And that's all that mattered to Kate.
A/N: My first story with the canon Castle kids! Yes, I wrote a similar story with my made-up Castle family, but I had to do it featuring Lily and Kate.