A/N: Well, this is it, guys. Final chapter. I really wanted to take the time to thank everyone who has read this story. Really, I've never written a story that was so accepted and embraced by the fandom. I'm incredibly happy that you all have seemed to enjoy it as much as I have. Because of this story, I met a lot of great people and it made me improve so much as a writer.
Thank you, thank you, thank you. It has been one hell of a ride. Thanks for sticking with me until the end.
Disclaimer: Castle is still not mine, sadly.
After she leaves Josh at the restaurant, Kate returns to the precinct to finish her shift. The hours seem to drag by, and every time she looks at the clock, thinking it's time to go home, ten minutes have barely passed. She can't wait to go to him and, to be honest, she feels so giddy and excited that she might as well be a teenager again. The butterflies are making a riot in her stomach and she hasn't even seen him yet. If she is feeling like this while they are apart, she absolutely can't wait to see what is going to happen when they are finally together.
She feels bad for hurting Josh's feelings, but all things considered, she doesn't think she did a bad job at letting him go. Thank God she was able to go through with it today because she thinks she would not be able to handle another day without being with Castle. One more day and she would spontaneously combust, she is absolutely sure.
She texted him when she left the restaurant and he texted her back saying he would see her tonight, but they haven't talked since. She is hoping and praying that no bodies drop until at least tomorrow morning. Nothing and no one is going to get in their way tonight.
When 6 o'clock finally rolls around, it's all she can do to not run out of the precinct. She gathers her coat and purse and walks calmly to her car. The drive to her apartment seems to be excruciatingly long during the rush hour and forty minutes have passed when she finally enters her apartment. Dropping her keys and purse on the coffee table, she makes her way to the bathroom to take a quick shower. When she is standing in front of her wardrobe, with a towel wrapped around her body, trying to decide what to wear, she can't help but laugh at herself. If someone had told her two weeks ago that tonight she would be fretting about what to wear on a date with Richard Castle, she would have laughed in their face.
But here she is. She can't decide what to wear and she's nervous as hell. This is ridiculous, she thinks, grabbing a pair of jeans and a dark green shirt. After she has put them on, she looks around the room, trying to find her favorite pair of boots. When she locates them, she sits on her bed to put them on, but her phone rings, interrupting her.
Please, God, not a body.
"Beckett." She answers, while putting the boots on.
"Why, hello, detective." She can hear the teasing smile in his voice.
"Hello, Mr. Castle." She grins to herself. "What can I do for you?"
"Just wondering what you wanted for dinner tonight." He says while she works on her make up.
"Would it be really cliché if I said I want you?" she teases him and her skin breaks out in goose bumps when she hears his low chuckle.
"Not at all, Kate. Not at all." He tells her and she laughs. "Too bad we're going to have company tonight."
"Oh." She can't hide her disappointment. So much for skipping dinner and going straight for the dessert then, she thinks, with a sigh.
"Just for dinner. Alexis is going out with Ashley and Mother apparently has a date. We'll have the loft to ourselves. At least for a little while."
"Thank God." She lets out a breath, relieved and he laughs.
"Can't wait to get me naked, can you, detective?" he teases her she rolls her eyes.
"Shut up, Castle." She laughs, blushing a little. "Should I bring anything? Maybe dessert?"
"You're going to be the dessert, Kate." He all but growls into the phone and she bites her lip to prevent a moan at his words. God, he is driving her crazy!
"Stop teasing me, Rick. I won't be held responsible for my actions if you keep doing that, you know?" she tells him and he chuckles. Now that they are both free to be together, they seem to have gotten even bolder with their flirting.
"You know, I really like this new side of you." he quips and she rolls her eyes, smiling.
"Dessert, Castle? The kind your family can also enjoy? Do you need me to bring any?" she reminds him.
"Whatever you want to bring is fine, Kate. We're not picky. As long as you're here."
"Okay, I'm almost ready to go. I'll see you soon."
"See you soon, love." He tells her and hangs up.
She stares at her reflection in the mirror for a moment, his words still running through her mind.
It's not the first time he has called her that, but it still gives her that sense of excitement while terrifying her at the same time. They haven't talked about this yet and she is sure they won't for a while. It's still so new, so fresh, that she feels that if they bring that into the relationship right now, things will start going wrong. It's ridiculous and doesn't make any sense, but that's how she feels.
She knows she loves him. She knows she's in so deep that she might never find her way out again. But she doesn't care. The fact that she has acknowledged and accepted that she is in love with Richard Castle is already a huge step for her. For now, she can show him how she feels with her actions. She has never been very good with words, anyway.
Rick, on the other hand, has his subtle ways of telling her how he feels. Calling her love is only one of them. Baby steps, she thinks, that's how they are going to make this work.
Checking the mirror one last time, she deems herself acceptable to have dinner with her… whatever Castle is to her. They really have to talk about this. How is she supposed to introduce him to people in non-professional circumstances?
With that in mind, she grabs her coat, purse and keys and heads out.
She fidgets with her clothes and runs a hand through her hair, trying to fix the mess that the New York City wind left behind. Now that she is standing at his door, that nervousness is back and she thinks her hands are shaking slightly. This is it. This is where everything changes, right now. God, if this doesn't work between them, she can kiss this partnership goodbye because there is no way they can go back to how things were before.
Steeling herself with a deep breath, she reaches out and rings the doorbell. Well, here goes nothing, she thinks as the door swings open. And just like that, her insecurities fly out the window because he is standing there with such a big smile, that it's impossible for her not to smile back.
He takes the ice cream container and brownie from her hands and welcomes her inside. She takes off her coat and hangs in the closet where he pointed her to. When she turns back to him, he is busy putting the dessert on the fridge. She walks over to him and stops right behind him, waiting for him to turn to her.
"I know you're checking me out, detective. No need to play coy now." He teases her and turns around.
"Don't flatter yourself, Castle."
She grins at him as he pulls her close. Brushing a stray strand of hair behind her ear, he leans in and captures her bottom lip with his. She immediately deepens the kiss, giving him access to explore her mouth with his tongue. She can't get enough of this. It was all she could think about all day.
"Hi." He whispers, resting his forehead against hers. She smiles at him and reaches for his hand, lacing her fingers through his.
"Hi." She whispers back and leans in for one more kiss. "Never thought I'd say this one day, but I've missed you." She grins and he shakes his head with a laugh.
"We should've gotten this on camera! No one is going to believe me when I tell them." He says excitedly, but she shuts him up with a kiss.
"Don't let it go to your head, Castle." She tells him with a teasing smile. He smiles back and pulls her back in for another kiss.
"Well, isn't this wonderful?" an excited voice exclaims behind them. They break apart reluctantly, only to find an overjoyed Martha smiling at them. "I say it's about time, kids."
Kate feels the heat creeping up her neck and she is sure she is blushing violently.
"Mother, a little privacy, please?" Rick says, narrowing his eyes at his mom.
"Nonsense, dear." She waves at him, dismissively. "Kate, sweetheart, there is no need to be embarrassed. I'm so happy for you two, really."
"Thank you, Martha." She says quietly, still blushing.
"Where is Alexis?" Rick asks, trying to change the subject and Kate is ever so grateful for it.
"Finishing her homework, I suppose. That or talking to Ashley on the phone. I swear I don't know how those two don't get sick of each other, the amount of time they spend together." Martha shakes her head. "Ah, there she is now. Alexis, darling, you'll never believe what I found in the kitchen!" she says and walks over to the stairs to meet her granddaughter. Kate thinks her face is about to burst into flames.
"Don't let it get to you. You know how my mother has a flair for dramatic." Rick whispers in her ear and she nods, willing her blush to subside. "Want to help me finish dinner here?"
"Sure, what can I do?" she squeezes his hand, grateful for the distraction.
She had completely forgotten that his family didn't know about them. Well, at least that part is over with, she thinks, working on a salad.
Dinner goes relatively well, if you count Alexis gushing about Kate and her dad being together and how she totally knew something had happened between them. Between that and Martha's knowing looks whenever she looked at them, Kate lost count of how many times she blushed at the table.
Around 8:30, Alexis announces she's late for her date with Ashley, which cues Martha's exit as well. When they are finally alone, Kate offers to take the dishes to the kitchen. Rick follows her and opens a bottle of wine, serving two glasses. She accepts hers and takes a sip, savoring the taste of good wine and the fact that they are finally alone for the first time that day.
"So how did it go with Josh?" he asks, trying to sound casual.
She hops onto the counter and smiles at him. "Better than I expected, actually."
"Yeah?" he walks over to her, stopping between her legs. Setting his glass on the counter, he gently caresses her thighs.
She closes her eyes for a moment, his touch sending a shiver through her.
"Yes, he took it surprisingly well." She breathes as he starts placing light kisses on her neck.
"Good, now I can have you all to myself." He grins against her neck and she tilts her head to the side, giving him more access.
She enjoys the feeling for a couple of minutes, and then wraps her arms around his neck, blindingly searching his lips with hers. They crash together in a tangle of lips, tongues and teeth and she feels him pulling her closer to him, to the point that their bodies are pressed tightly against one another. Rick slowly slips his hand underneath her shirt, gently touching her warm skin. She shivers under his touch and breaks their kiss to attack his neck, grinning when she hears him let out a low moan at her ministrations.
His hands explore her body further, as he reaches her breasts and gently runs his thumb over her nipples, her shirt rising up higher and higher, to the point that Rick breaks their contact only to take her shirt off. Dropping it on the counter, he resumes his activity, now kissing and sucking her nipples through the fabric of her bra. Kate throws her head back as a wave of pleasure runs through her and she can't prevent the moan that escapes her lips.
"Rick." She gasps.
"What?" he mumbles, now sucking on her neck.
"We can't stay here. What if someone walks in on us?" She says breathlessly. He has just unbuttoned her jeans and his hand is slowly slipping inside her panties. "Baby, come on." She says touching his arm. Rick stops and looks at her, his pupils dilated with raw desire. She kisses his lips gently and gets down from the counter.
"I so wanted to have you here. Right here on the counter." He growls into her ear, hugging her from behind. She feels his hardness against her thigh and her need for him triples. She laughs quietly and reaches for her shirt.
"We can make it happen. Just not tonight." She says turning around to kiss him.
She just can't stay away from him. It is like a magnetic force is pulling her to him constantly. He kisses her deeply, exploring her mouth with his tongue and she feels like her body is on fire. She moans into the kiss and can't help but tug at his shirt and quickly take it off, breaking the kiss for just a second. She throws it down on the floor and kisses him again.
He breaks the kiss after a moment and looks at her, only to find that her eyes mirror his lust. He needs her and he needs her now.
"Come on." He picks her up, her legs encircling his waist and resumes their kiss. He makes his way up the stairs and to his room blindly as she attacks his neck, sucking on it mercilessly. She is driving him crazy and she knows it.
He opens the door to his room and carries her inside, locking the door behind them. Laying her down on his bed, he takes his time just running his hands down her body, watching her reaction to it. When he has her trembling with need, he unzips her jeans and slowly pulls it off along with her boots, gently touching her skin along the way, and smiles when she breaks out in goose bumps.
"Rick." She moans. He throws her jeans on the floor and turns his attention to her black lace panties. Pressing his hand against her hot center, he grins again when she squirms impatiently under him, bucking her hips into his hand.
He leans down and kisses her stomach and slowly but surely makes his way down until he reaches her panties. Taking it off with his teeth, he enjoys how impatient she is getting. He throws them down on the floor and gently kisses the inside of her thighs. She moans again and he decides to stop teasing her, by slipping two fingers inside of her and kissing her sensitive nub. She gasps and arches her hips, her hands pulling on his hair.
"Rick, please." She moans again, his fingers working in and out of her. He looks at her and she is thrashing her head around, her hands now pulling on the sheets. "I need you." She breathes. "Right now. Inside. Please." He starts looking for the condom in his pocket when she stops him. "Don't worry, I'm on the pill."
He obliges her wish and quickly takes off his pants, joining her on the bed. Sucking on her nipples again, he enjoys the groan of pleasure she lets out and quickly unhooks her bra, throwing it somewhere behind him. He kisses her again, softly, his erection pressed against her skin. She reaches out and grabs his hard shaft, squeezing it gently, making him groan in pleasure. She runs her fingers lightly along the length of it, enjoying him moaning against her neck. As much as she wants him, she wants to torture him a bit first.
"Kate, please." He moans when she squeezes him again. "I need to be inside you now, love, please." He begs, kissing her lips again. She lets him go and he pushes inside of her hard, making her cry out in a mix of pleasure and pain.
She arches her hips and meets his thrusts, building a rhythm that has both on edge soon. He changes their positions so she is suddenly on top. She opens her eyes and locks her gaze with his, his hands on her hips, bouncing her up and down. He feels her walls tightening around him and watches as her climax hits her, when she throws her head back and cries out, triggering his own release.
Breathless, she collapses on top of him, her strength gone. He showers her face with kisses as their heart rate slowly gets back to normal. Tucking a strand of hair behind her ear, he kisses her nose softly.
"Wow." She says, still breathless.
"I hope that's a good wow." He says with a chuckle and she kisses his chest.
"Hell, yes! Why did we wait so long to do that?" she asks him, her chin resting on his chest.
"I've been telling you since day one how awesome we would be together. Took you long enough to finally realize it." He teases her and she slaps his arm playfully.
"Shut up, Castle." She says and leans in to place a quick peck on his lips. He holds her in place and deepens the kiss, one of his hands trailing down her back to press her hips against his. She feels him stirring against her and grins into the kiss. "Already?" she smiles at him teasingly.
"What can I say, that's the effect you have on me, detective." He tells her with a grin. "Now that I got you, I won't let you out of this bed." He says against her lips, making her grin back.
"Should I be scared?" she teases, sucking on his bottom lip. He grabs her hips, lifting her up just enough for him to enter her swiftly.
She lets out a moan and he silences her with a kiss.
"Only if you think you can't handle this." He growls into her ear as she rocks her hips against him. She is already seeing colored spots in front of her eyes, pleasure running like a storm through her body.
"Bring it on, Castle." She challenges him and he flips them over, thrusting into her with renewed energy. She can vaguely hear herself moaning and would be slightly embarrassed if it didn't feel so damn good.
Later, she is almost falling asleep when she feels him slipping out of bed. She reaches out to him and touches his arm.
"Where are you going?" she asks sleepily.
"I heard the door downstairs; I'm just going to check if it's Alexis." He leans down and kisses her lips softly. "Go to sleep. I'll be right back, I promise."
"Okay." She says and feels him pulling the comforter over her, before leaning down to kiss her forehead.
She closes her eyes and snuggles further into his bed, enjoying his scent all around her. With a sigh, she marvels at the fact that only a few days ago they didn't even think a relationship was possible between them, and now look how far they have come.
Amazing, she thinks. Nothing short of amazing that one touch was all it took for all of this to happen. She sighs contently as she feels him slipping back into bed a few minutes later. He wraps an arm around her waist and pulls her closer to him, her back against his chest, and kisses her neck gently.
"Still awake?" he asks, nuzzling against her hair.
"Barely." She mumbles, turning around to hide her face in the crook of his neck. "Night, Rick." She says, drifting off.
"Night, love." She feels his lips brush against the top of her head and his arms hold her tighter against him.
As she allows sleep to take her under, the last thing she can think of is how glad she is they can finally be together with nothing to feel guilty about.
She sighs and kisses his neck softly.
Nothing can stop them now.
Again, thank you so much. You guys are the best.