Word Count: 708
Disclaimer: I own nothing in the following work of fiction.
A/N: We take a break from your regularly scheduled multi-chap to bring you this piece of Mother's Day… fluff I guess. I don't know that it's particularly fluffy, but it works. Set about three years after Days Like These. I will be writing a complete set of stories to cover the time period in between these, but for now all that's relevant is Joe is Beckett and Castle's new baby. He's about 4 months old in this piece.
Beckett waved tiredly to Esposito as he dropped her off in front of her building. Her feet felt leaden as she trudged into the elevator. In all her days, Beckett didn't think she had ever been this tired. The elevator ride seemed to take forever as it ascended to her floor.
Work had been tough. The case was complicated, the hours had been long and she was ready for her promised days off. Montgomery, seeing her exhaustion, had sent her home on call for the next 48 hours.
Fumbling with her keys, Beckett whimpered in frustration as she fought to get the key in the lock. It was late and the loft was dark when she finally got the door open. A sigh of relief passed her lips as she kicked off her shoes.
In the dim light from the kitchen, she caught sight of a vase and card on the kitchen counter. A tired smile lit up her face as she read the yellow envelope. 'Mommy' was penned across the front in her husband's neat handwriting. Pulling out the card she looked at the generic front with a picture of three puppies on the front and Happy Mother's Day across the top. Inside the message was simple, but made happy tears spring to her eyes.
'To Mom from all of us. Happy Mother's day.'
It was the three names written that made her tears fall. 'Love Alexis, Anna, and Joe xoxoxo'
She looked at the three pink roses in the simple glass vase the card had been leaning against. Suddenly not quite so tired, she walked to the office and put her gun and badge in the safe under Castle's desk. Her files went in the paper tray where she left her unfinished paperwork. Then she went upstairs, finding it as quiet as the downstairs. Not surprising given the late hour. Her first stop was Alexis's room.
She was home from school for the summer and currently fast asleep in her old bed. Beckett stepped forward, tucking in a stray foot and rearranging the covers.
"Night Lex. Love you too," she whispered, pressing a kiss to the girl's forehead.
Next stop was the room at the end of the hall.
The nursery was bathed in a dim glow from the nightlight beside the change table. Looking over the side of the crib, Beckett rearranged Joe's blanket and ran a hand over the downy soft mohawk of hair that stuck up in all directions. The baby smacked his lips slightly and turned towards her hand, but stayed blissfully asleep. Teething was not being kind to any of them.
Lowing the crib railing, Beckett pressed a kiss to her son's forehead. A content smile fell over her face when she inhaled his clean baby smell. It was something that still managed to amaze her.
"Night Joe. Mommy loves you," she sighed happily, putting the crib railing back up.
Finally she walked into her bedroom. Rolling her eyes, she tucked Castle's feet back under the covers and picked up the dirty socks and shirts that never seemed to make it to the hamper. After bedroom had been straightened, Beckett pulled out a pair of sleep shorts and a t-shirt. She went into the bathroom to change and emerged a few moments later fresh faced and ready for bed. Before she went to join her husband in bed, she stopped in front of her dresser.
A gentle index finger traced the features of her mother's face on her jewelry box.
"Happy Mother's Day Mom," Beckett whispered.
Earlier she had found a few moments to put fresh flowers at her grave. Holidays were always a trying time for her. It only served to remind Beckett of what she had lost. It was a slow process, but she was learning to recognize what she had gained as well.
Lastly she picked up the soft grey bunny and held it tightly to her chest. Her tears fell anew and soaked Bunny's fur. As always the toy was the silent comfort she needed and it wasn't long before her tears came to an end. Stroking Bunny's fur one last time, she pressed a kiss to his button nose.
"Sweet dreams Anna Rose. Mommy loves you."