Title: Always

Author: Aimee

Beta: Dev

Word Count: 314

Prompt: here

Rating: PG

Spoilers: A spoiler-free zone.

Pairing: Castle/Beckett

Summary: Beckett receives some devastating news.

Disclaimer: If you recognize them, they belong to Andrew Marlowe. Otherwise, they're mine.

Author's Note: Written for castleland.

Beckett dropped the telephone in her hand and sank to her knees as sobs consumed her. Castle watched with worry for a few moments before gently placing his hand on her shoulder. "Kate, what is it?" he asked softly as he lowered himself to her position.

Beckett just continued to sob. Castle couldn't stand to see her in so much pain so he tenderly pulled her into his arms and held her tightly. She curled herself into his arms, wanting to be as close to him as she could get, wanting the comfort of his embrace.

"What is it, baby? What happened?" he asked, kissing the top of her head as she continued crying.

When she was finally able to speak, she looked up at him tearfully. "My dad," she told him simply.

Castle got an uneasy feeling in the pit of his stomach. "What about him?"

"He--" she started before sobs overcame her once again. Castle just held her, knowing she'd tell him when she was ready.

Finally, she took a deep breath and continued. "He had a heart attack, Castle."

"Is he going to be okay?" he asked gently.

Kate shook her head. "No," she whispered. "He didn't make it."

"Oh, baby, I'm so sorry," he told her, pulling her into his arms once again.

Kate still missed her mom so much. Castle's books had helped her through the very worst of it, had helped her deal with the pain. Who was going to help her through the loss of her dad?

Castle stood and held out a hand to the woman next to him, the strongest woman he had ever met. Kate smiled sadly and took his hand as they made their way out into the bright New York City sunshine. And that's when she knew. Rick Castle would help her through this. In her heart, she knew he'd always be there.