Title: A Particularly Elegant Chaos
Author: golden orange
Medium: Doctor Who / Castle
Characters: Kate Beckett, the Doctor (various).
Disclaimer: Yeah, none of them are mine.
Warnings: some mild language.
Word count: Around 2118.
Author's Notes: I've recently gotten into Castle. I've been into Doctor Who for a while. This is the result. And don't think I'm finished. I have move. Tremble in fear or awe. Or both. And enjoy!
Summary: The Doctor has a habit of running into Kate Beckett's life and making a huge mess of things. And he doesn't even have the decency to do it in chronological order. (Crossover with Castle and Doctor Who)
This is a story. And like any story, it's hard to know where the beginning should be. So we're just gonna start it here.
It's a story about a detective.
She's a good detective, in every way that a detective can be good. And she likes everything to be nice and neat and in order. It's why she solves mysteries, after all. She's had a lot of chaos in her life - chaos of the worst kind, the nothing-is-the-same-after-this kind. The rip-your-heart-out-and-stamp-on-it-kind. The break-your-soul-in-pieces kind.
Yeah, she doesn't like chaos much.
And so she meets this guy. He's not at all about nice and neat and in order. He thrives on chaos. He creates mysteries. It drives her crazy, in more ways than one.
They have adventures. Solve crimes. Get to know each other.
And much to her surprise, she falls in love with him. Less to his surprise (did I mention she's a good-looking detective?), he falls in love with her. The best kind of love. The happy-ever-after kind of love (or as close as you can get when you're a homicide detective).
Hell of a story.
This isn't that story. Sorry to get your hopes up.
This is a story about another guy the detective meets. Another guy who thrives on chaos, who creates mysteries, who apparently exists just to completely disrupt order. Another guy who, like the first guy, seems determined to make her life as chaotic as possible whenever he enters it.
Unlike the first guy, however, he doesn't even have the decency to do so in chronological order.
Hence why here's as good a place to start as anywhere.
Detective Kate Beckett is just to start the first full weekend she's had off in about three months by climbing in the bath with a good book and a glass of red wine when her phone rings. Despite the glare she sends in it's general direction, it doesn't stop ringing. A few moments of cursing and fumbling later, she's in her kitchen in her bathrobe desperately trying to will it not to be...
RYAN, KEVIN (WORK), the display on her phone reads.
She sighs and hits 'answer'. "Beckett."
"Hey Beckett, sorry to bother you. We... kinda got a situation here. It's about Anderton."
"Anderton? Accountant you found in the park, right?" Found in pieces, more like. Apparently it took four hours for them to find enough of him to scrape together a positive ID. It's not even one of her files. "What's it got to do with me? That's Esposito's case, right?"
"Yeah, but... your name's kind of come up."
"Long story... there's this guy... look, we're at what we're pretty is the crime scene. But there's this guy we caught sniffing around."
Beckett counts to ten in her head. "So book him. You've been a homicide cop how long, Ryan?"
"It's not that simple. Plus, he says he knows you. Says you're tight. Old friends from way back or something. Figured he might be an informant of yours or something, except..." he tails off.
"Well, who is he?"
"That's it; he's not giving us a name. Just says he's a doctor or something. Anyway, he insists you can vouch for him and... look, there's something not right about him. Can you come down here?"
Beckett pauses. Cop banter aside, this is not the usual Kevin Ryan. He sounds... unnerved. This does not sound good.
But still... bubble bath. Scented candles. The latest Richard Castle. She's been looking forward to this all day, no way she's giving up without at least a token shot at resistance.
"You want me to drop everything I'm doing? Now? What if I have a date right now?"
There's a chuckle over the phone. "Yeah, right, good one Beckett."
Beckett clenches her jaw. Sighs, and shoots a regretful look towards her bathroom. She can smell the scented candles from here.
"Give me the address," she says.
It takes Beckett five minutes to throw some clothes on, her hair still pulled up for the bath, her clothes mismatched and chosen at random, and forty-five minutes to get to the crime scene. An old townhouse in an area that's seen better days; as she walks up the street, curtains twitch as neighbors try to gawk while simultaneously making it clear that they know absolutely nothing. Squirrelly types looking for the nearest crack-den eye-fuck her with the second sight that crackheads somehow get when they're dealing with the law.
Her badge gets her into the crime scene. Uniforms and CSI swarm around, dusting for prints; more activity than you'd usually find in a place like this even if there were a body found in it. Detectives Javier Esposito and Kevin Ryan are hanging in the kitchen, waiting for her. Esposito raises an eyebrow at the sight of her, and Ryan smirks.
"Nice get-up, Beckett," Esposito chuckles. "Ryan said you said you had a hot date tonight. Been laughin' ever since."
Ryan snorts back a laugh. Oh yes. Her vengeance on them will be slow, excruciating (for them) and highly entertaining (for her). "You want, I can give you my fashion advisor, Esposito. I hear you two need me to hold your hands for you."
Esposito and Ryan exchange looks. Despite the bonhomie, there's something slightly... off about them. Spooked, almost. Esposito nods, motioning her to follow.
"So what's an accountant doing here, anyway?" Beckett asks as they lead her towards the stairs. She can probably guess the answer, but they're obviously not just going to come out and say what she's doing here.
Ryan shrugs. "Hell if we know. There's a crack den five doors up, and normally we'd suspect the usual tastes, but everyone swears he's a boy scout and his autopsy showed he was clean. Not even an aspirin. We find this address in his work computer and it sticks out, so we get a couple of uniforms to watch the place while we get the warrant."
"Johensen and Drake," Esposito nods towards a uniform trying to make himself look busy by the staircase and unaware of the presence of the detectives heading up it. Esposito raises his voice slightly as they start to walk up it. "And Johensen there apparently doesn't realize I ain't no English chick."
Johensen flushes and scurries away as quick as he can. Beckett looks at him, puzzled.
"There's two people already here when we get here," Ryan explains. "Male and female, both caucasian, mid-thirties. Both British. Apparently he showed a false NYPD ID to get in. Said they were Detectives Ryan and Esposito, not to be disturbed."
"He used 'Ryan'," Ryan pipes up. "Which is actually kinda flattering, really, in a way..."
"Anyway," Esposito shares a glance with Kate, "We sweep the place, and find them on the top floor. And in the basement, we find..."
Esposito and Ryan share another look. Beckett gets it. The weird attitude is suddenly a lot more understandable.
"Well. Anyway, we're holding them upstairs in the bedroom."
"We got an ID on them?" Beckett asks.
"Nada. Just the fake on him, nothing on her. We've sent out a description, checking Customs and Immigration now. That's not the weird thing." Esposito stops on the staircase, just outside an open door with a uniform guarding it. Kate is guessing it's the bedroom. When Esposito speaks again, he's quieter. "We go in there to question them, the guy takes one look at me and says "Javier!" Like he knows me. Same with Ryan. Beckett, I never seen this guy in my life."
Beckett frowns, looks at Ryan, who slowly shakes his head. "And he insists he knows you too," he finishes off for Esposito. "Hence why we called you down instead of waiting."
"So, he impersonates you," Beckett thinks out loud, pointing at Ryan, "then tries to pretend he knows you? I don't get it. What's his act?"
Esposito looks like he's about to respond when a voice suddenly yells in excitement from the open door ahead of them, having apparently heard them. A man's voice, with a strong English accent. "Is that Kate? Kate Beckett? That's you, isn't it!"
Beckett shares a puzzled look with Ryan and Esposito before she walks in. Inside is what remains of a bedroom. Peeling, stained and faded wallpaper covers the walls, a faint blue floral pattern just discernible under the grime. Empty except for a huge wrought-iron bed attached to the floor, with no mattress or sheets, just rusting springs. And two people handcuffed awkwardly to the bedposts, a man and a woman, both approximately mid-thirties. The woman, a redhead, is wearing a leather jacket and jeans, and looks... well, a combination of pissed-off and nervous. The man is wearing a bad brown pinstripe suit with mismatched sneakers, a long brown overcoat, and an expression that's far more happy and excited than a man handcuffed to a bed and held by police on suspicion of murder among other things should by all rights be.
"It is!" He squeals - yes, his voice actually goes all squeaky when he sees her. He jumps about a bit, although his glee is constrained by his hands being cuffed to a bed and behind his back, meaning his leaps for joy translate to a few awkward spasms which only shake the bed a bit. The motion of the bed jostles his companion, who shoots him an ugly look. "It's Kate! Hello, Kate!" He raises one of his hands as far as he can and waves happily as best he can, grinning like a lunatic all the while.
"Um," Beckett begins.
She doesn't get to finish. "Oh, look at you, though!" the man gushes. "Kate Beckett. Sight for sore eyes and no mistake. Brilliant! With your jacket, and your badge, and your... hair..." he drifts off, staring at Beckett's hair, puzzled.
There's an awkward pause.
"Yeah well," the man continues brightly. "I mean, you can't always have good hair, can you? Still, there's not many women who'd say "Yeah, I don't care what my hair looks like! I'll go out with terrible hair if I want!" Well done you!"
Beckett's eyes narrow. The woman he's with closes her eyes, groans, and leans her head back against the bedpost as if she's contemplating beating her own head in. Even Esposito and Ryan shake their heads at this particular bit of tactlessness.
"Still, though," the man rattles on, oblivious to any kind of offense caused. He jangles the hand of his cuffed to the bedpost. "Sorry to bother you. How's Rick? No, never mind. No time. Got a bit of a misunderstanding going on with Javi and Kev here."
"Sure," Esposito agrees, sharing another look with Ryan, "if you call 'conspiracy to commit murder', 'impersonating a police officer', 'disturbing the scene of a crime' and 'obstruction of justice' a misunderstanding."
"We were not impersonating!" the man snaps back defensively, apparently not noticing the other pressing matters in the hypothetical charge-sheet he was facing. "There was no impersonation. They merely assumed!"
"This is the fake," Esposito explains, handing Beckett a black leather wallet. She opens it, expecting to see an NYPD ID card and badge. Instead, there's just a blank piece of paper.
She looks again. Still blank. "Guys, there's nothing on here," she remarks, puzzled.
Esposito suddenly snatches it back and he and Ryan examine it, puzzled. As one, they look at the man cuffed to the bed, whose grin has suddenly intensified at this apparently mundane observation. "Aw, you see that?" he says, proudly, as if he's watching his daughter take her first bike ride. "Amazing. Did I not say she was amazing, Donna? 'Cos you are. Absolutely brilliant. They'll write books about you one day, Kate."
"For what it's worth," Ryan comments dryly, still glancing back down at the ID-that-is-apparently-not-an-ID, "he's been singing your praises all night."
"So yeah," the man rambles on, as if Ryan hadn't spoke, "bit of a situation. Donna and me - this is Donna, by the way," Donna nods with resigned politeness and wiggles her fingers as best she can in greeting, "we're just looking into something - not much yet, I don't think, but potentially a bit, well, apocalyptic, let's not mince words, and there's something very nasty going on in this street and I think it somehow involves that poor bloke they're talking about who got killed - and I know you love mysteries, don't want to spoil the ending for you, but if you're looking for suspects, well, I'd take anyone human off that list personally - "
"Oh, for God's sake, Doctor!" the woman - Donna - suddenly explodes. English as well. "We're under arrest, it's hot, I'm cramped, my wrists hurt and there's a metal thing from this bloody bed sticking into my arse. I don't want to go to jail or get tetanus, you say she can get us out of this, so shut up, tell her to what you need to tell her, let her do it and let's just get on with it."
The 'Doctor' looks puzzled. "Shut up and tell her - "
"Just do it, Doctor!"
"All right!" he protests. "Anyway. Long-story-short, as you know, we're not murderers or anything like that, can you explain that to them, please?" The man nods at Esposito and Ryan and leans back confidently.
There's a pause. Everyone looks at Kate expectantly. Kate blinks and opens and closes her mouth a few times.
"Yeah," Kate says eventually, "who are you?"
Esposito and Ryan turn to the Doctor and Donna, eyebrows raised. Donna spins to face her friend, eyes wide and horrified. The Doctor blinks a couple of times, and his face falls.
"And who's Rick, by the way?" Beckett continues, in the too-pleasant voice that Ryan and Esposito recognize from many, many previous dressing-downs as the 'I was looking forward to a relaxing night tonight and now you've ruined it and pissed me off so you have ten seconds to make me happy or I'm going to kick your ass' voice.
"You don't recognize me?" The Doctor asks, genuinely confused.
"I've never seen you before in my life."
There's a long pause.
"No," the man says eventually, "No, but you should... I mean, I'm... you've met this... and you've surely met Rick by now..." a thoughtful expression suddenly passes his face, and he stares into space as if no one else is there. "Although I suppose it could be... and I do look a bit... and they didn't... and you do look... and it does feel a bit..."
There's another pause.
"Sorry," the Doctor frowns, "what year is this?"
Donna looks like she wants to cry. Kate knows the feeling. There's a stress headache building behind her eyes.
It's going to be a long night.
You'd think that'd be the first time and last time Kate Beckett met the Doctor for the first time.
You'd be wrong.