Ex Lover Encounter

Summary: Kate/Rick implied. A year after Kate broke up with Tom Demming, Castle runs into him on the street. Can Kate's ex-lover help the writer to see what is right in front of him? Oneshot.

I have no idea where this fanfic came from. It just wrote itself in the last half an hour or so! I have a bit of a weakness for Demming as a character, even though I feel it is my duty as a Caskett shipper to hate all of Kate's boyfriends, but perhaps it's because he's portrayed by Michael Trucco. Anyway, since he hadn't been mentioned on the show since the season 2 finale, I felt like his character needed some closure, especially if I could turn him into a Caskett shipper! Originally Demming was going to appear in a later chapter of my WIP 'The Start of Us' but in the end, it worked better with having this as an unrelated oneshot.

Hope you like this, and reviews are loved! xxx

For weeks after their break up, Tom Demming had been unable to think of anything but Katherine Beckett and how he was pretty certain she had broken his heart. They hadn't known each other for all that long but the time they had spent together had been wonderful. At least he thought it had been until the day Kate had approached him at the precinct and told him that this wasn't what she wanted; what she was looking for and that they were over. Those first few weeks of summer had been hard for Tom, especially as he would occasionally see Kate in the corridors at work, or at the same crime scene if their cases overlapped. But in August, Tom was offered a promotion which he hungrily accepted. The position was good but the main selling point for Tom was that it meant he would moving to another office and leaving the twelfth precinct behind. Although he would miss the friends he had made in the robbery division, he was glad to be leaving, knowing that he wouldn't have to worry about running into Kate in the hallways anymore.

Three weeks into his new job across the city and Tom met an FBI agent who was working on a case with them. He usually resisted FBI help on an investigation, believing them to be more of a hindrance but there was something about the redheaded female Agent that sucked him in. Once the investigation was closed, Tom finally made his move on the Agent and they had been dating since then. Although he wasn't sure he would ever truly stop thinking about what it would have been like if Kate had been willing to give them a proper shot at a relationship, Tom was happy and pretty sure he was in love. It was a relief to have moved on.

Almost a year had passed since Kate had ended their relationship and Tom was ready to take the next step in his relationship. He was walking back to the precinct, a square velvet jewellery box in his pocket when he saw a familiar face walking towards him. Apart from cardboard cut outs in the windows of bookstores, Tom had never expected to see this man again. Even though he had assured Tom that nothing was going on between himself and Kate, Tom had always known there was more going on there than either of them would admit to. He had wondered often if Richard Castle was the reason why Kate had broken up with him.

"Demming!" The writer boomed, slashing Tom's hope that Castle wouldn't recognise him.

"Hi, Castle." He replied warily. "What are you doing in this part of town?"

"Best pizza in town a few blocks away." He grinned. "I could ask you the same question though, you're a long way from the Twelfth."

Tom shook his head. "I haven't worked there in nine months, I was offered a promotion and I accepted it."

"That's great." Castle replied, realising that he had never been fair on the other man. He had been far too busy being jealous of Tom and Kate's relationship than he hadn't ever bothered to get to know Demming as a person. He felt a little guilty for the 'Schlemming' jibes in 'Naked Heat' now. He hoped Demming was one of those cops who refused to read crime fiction.

"Yeah, things actually took a turn for the better after Kate dumped me." Tom was able to smile about it now, especially as he was sure that Emma would say yes when he presented her with the engagement ring that night. "I've actually just bought an engagement ring for my girlfriend."

"Congratulations, I'm happy for you." Castle smiled, and he meant it.

"Thanks, man." He bit his lip before replying, knowing the next words wouldn't be so easy to say. "So, how about you and Kate? Are you ready to take the trip up the aisle?"

Castle was so stunned that he didn't know how to reply. "What? Kate and I? No, definitely not. We're not even a couple. She's dating some superhero heart surgeon who rides a motorbike." He pulled a face and Tom laughed. Who would have thought that a year on, the two of them would be having this conversation?

"I thought...I assumed..." Tom began. "Sorry, I always thought that Kate had broken up with me so that she could be with you."

"No, no..." Castle stopped, if Tom was right it could explain the way Kate had treated him when they had been reunited the previous Fall. Had she really left Tom for him, and he had gone to the Hamptons with Gina anyway? What a mess.

"I can't believe you're not together." Tom admitted.

Castle sighed. "For someone who writes about the thoughts and feelings of others for a living in my books, I really am quite blind when it comes to my own life."

"Go and ask her why she broke up with me." Tom told him. He knew he couldn't be with her, didn't want to be now that he had Emma, but he could see that Kate belonged with Castle.

"I can't, she's with Josh." Castle chewed on his lip, feeling a little dazed and lightheaded as if he was dreaming.

"If she left me to be with you, maybe she'll do the same with this Doctor Motorcycle Boy."

It was a lot to think about, and suddenly Castle was quite so desperate for his pizza anymore, in fact his appetite had left him almost entirely. What he really wanted was to get back home and see Kate.

"Thanks Tom," He said. "And I'm sorry for being such an ass to you before."

Tom grinned. "Forget about it. Good luck with Kate."

"Good luck with your proposal." He returned.

They said goodbye, going off in their own directions. Castle certainly had a lot to think about on his way home.