Disclaimer: All television shows, movies, books, and other copyrighted material referred to in this work, and the characters, settings, and events thereof, are the properties of their respective owners. As this work is an interpretation of the original material and not for-profit, it constitutes fair use. Reference to real persons, places, or events are made in a fictional context, and are not intended to be libelous, defamatory, or in any way factual.

A/N:Written for the vacationthon comm on livejournal. Prompt was "navigation difficulties lead to adventure". I think this fits if sex is your definition of adventure...

Texas is a state of mind.

~John Steinbeck

The thin wooden door shakes violently on its hinges as she slams through it, tossing her sunglasses and purse down on the rickety table. He follows along after her, their suitcases clutched tightly in his hands. The room is stagnant; the walls a murky yellow, the result of years of post-coital cigarettes, the faded flower patterned comforter almost as threadbare and rough as the grey industrial carpet. Kate whirls around, the loose fitting peasant top he'd loved so much that morning because it made her look soft and comfortable billowing angrily around her upper body.

"Uh-uh. Absolutely not. I'll sleep in the car." She starts back toward the door, swiping at her sunglasses, and he kicks it shut, blocking her exit with the bulk of his body. "Get out of the way, Castle," she seethes, her voice dangerously low.

"You can't sleep in a convertible in Texas in July. The mosquitoes will exsanguinate you before midnight."

"Don't be cute," she points a finger at him and he takes a step back, eyes flicking from her face to the hand she'd holding out in his direction like she wishes it were a gun. This is so not how this trip was supposed to go. "I am not sleeping in this." She waves an arm wildly around her head, her hair fluttering in the breeze she creates. "I don't even want to think about the number of diseases in here."

"It's just for one night. Come on, Beckett," he drops the suitcases, ignores her exaggerated cringe and takes a step closer to her, hooks his thumbs through her belt loops. "Maybe something freaky will happen and we can investigate. Show the local yokels how it's done."

"What the hell are you talking about?"

"That's what always happened for Mulder and Scully."

"I'm going to kill you."

"I know. But can you wait until we're in a state without the death penalty? I'd hate to think of you spending the rest of your life on death row."

"I'm pretty sure I could convince a jury it was justifiable." She sighs and lists toward him, her anger melting in the thick summer heat. "For the record, this," she rotates a finger around the moldering room, nose crinkled in adorable disgust, "is why I don't let you drive. I fell asleep in civilization and woke up in the middle of nowhere."

"To be fair, a lot of Texas is the middle of nowhere." She purses her lips at him. "This just isn't the particular swath of nowhere we were aiming for."

"Remind me again why I agreed to this?"

"Because road trips are fun." He pulls her closer, his fingers pushing under the hem of her shirt to brush across the warm skin at her waist. "And because driving across the country puts a considerable dent in our goal of having sex in each of the fifty states."

Her laughter is warm against his cheek, the lingering scent of coffee and red licorice wafting past his nose. "Our goal? I had nothing to do with the formulation of that plan. Nor did I agree to it. And," she pushes on his chest and steps back, arms crossing loosely over her chest, "after this little detour, I wouldn't be so certain about marking Texas off your list."

"Oh, come on. How can you say no to sex in Texas? The heat pressing down on your naked skin, making everything slow and slippery." He steps closer and she backs away, the corners of her lips curling up softly and belying her mask of stern disapproval. "The perfume of sage in bloom, the prairie sky, wide and high, the stars big and bright overh-"

"Are you seriously trying to seduce me with the lyrics to "Deep in the Heart of Texas"?" She cuts him off, laughing.

"Is it working?"

"Not even a little."


Kate huffs at him and moves toward the window, reaching down to turn on the wall mounted air conditioning unit. The machine rumbles pathetically to life, an anemic stream of tepid air trickling from the rusty vents. "You've got to be kidding me." She kicks the front panel and it rattles, the overtaxed compressor sputtering and wheezing.

Fearing once again for the safety of his person, Castle pulls the car keys out of his pocket and heads for the door. "I saw one of those big box stores a few miles back so I'm just gonna run out and get a few things. You stay here and make yourself comfortable." The force of her glare pushes him out of the room and back into the sweltering heat of the late July afternoon.

The room is empty when he returns an hour later, arms laden with crinkling plastic shopping bags. For a brief moment he fears that she left but the sound of running water echoing through the closed bathroom door eradicates that idea before it has a chance to take root. The ancient air conditioner still chugs along, stirring the soupy air rather than cooling it.

The table tilts precariously as he sets his purchases down, the loose top wobbling with each new addition. He spreads the weight out as evenly as possible before diving into the bags, pulling out various items that he hopes will make this night a little more enjoyable because the idea of spending the next nine hours trapped in a tiny rented box with a pissed off Beckett is not overly appealing.

He's just finishing remaking the bed when the bathroom door creaks noisily open and Kate emerges, naked body wrapped up tightly in a tiny towel, the thin terrycloth stiff with industrial bleach. Her wet hair curls around her shoulders, dripping beads of water over her tanned skin. He tracks a particularly fat droplet as it winds down over the ridge of her collarbone, slips down between the valley of her breasts.

"What are you doing?"

"I bought some sheets and a blanket so we don't have to sleep on those," he points to the lump of discarded bedding piled in the corner. "How was your shower?"

"Nice," she answers, clutching the towel closed with her bicep as she rummages through her suitcase. "This place has surprisingly decent water pressure."

"They should put that in the brochure."

She rolls her eyes at him and pulls on a pair of underwear and a t-shirt. Sitting on the edge of the bed, she pulls a leg up under her body and runs a comb through her hair, watching as he continues to rifle through the bags.

"What else did you get?"


Castle pulls out his purchases, lining them up on the table. It's an odd assortment of brick-a-brack, everything branded with an outline of the state or a giant single star. Shot glasses, bumper stickers, coasters, a tri fold wallet covered in faux cowhide, t-shirts emblazoned with a slogan about the perils of messing with Texas, key chains, coffee mugs, playing cards, a bottle opener and a giant brass belt buckle. Kate watches him arrange his haul, fingers twisting her wet hair into a braided rope that she pulls over her left shoulder.

"They saw you coming, didn't they?"

He ignores her, bending over to pick up the last bag from under the table. "And for the pièce de résistance -" He pulls out a straw cowboy hat and plops it on his head, pulling the brim down low over his eyes. "Do I make this look good or what?" He turns to examine himself in the mirror hanging over the dresser, twisting his neck from side to side. "I shoulda been a cowboy."

"You look ridiculous."

Grinning, he pulls a smaller hat out of the bag and sticks it on top her head. "And you look incredibly sexy. Wanna go for a ride?" He asks, wiggling his eyebrows lasciviously.

Kate pulls the hat off and tosses it onto the table. "So not happening."

"We'll see about that, little lady." Kate's eyes narrow dangerously and he holds up his hands in surrender. "Sorry, sorry. Must be the hat." He tugs it off and puts it on the dresser, toeing off his shoes. Glancing at his watch, he turns back to look at her. "It's after eight. Are you hungry?"

"It's too hot for food."

"I was hoping you'd say that." Castle ducks down and yanks open the door of the mini fridge, using his body to block her view of the interior. He catches Kate staring at his ass when he stands back up and gives his hips a little shake. She laughs, scooting back to rest against the new pillows he'd lined up along the headboard. He holds up his hands as he turns back around, announcing proudly, "Dinner is served."

"Dinner is beer and ice cream?"

"Beer and ice cream? Beckett, I'm appalled. This," he lifts the hand holding the two amber bottles, "is Shiner Bock and Blue Bell," he raises the two pints of ice cream, sweat beading on the gold rimmed lids. "Beer and ice cream," he mutters, grabbing the bottle opener off the table. "Sometimes I wonder about you."

Kate takes the open bottle and ice cream from his outstretched hand, eyes rolling. She pops the lid off and takes a bite, moaning softly around the plastic spoon.

"Good?" He asks, stripping off his sweat wilted t-shirt and moving to sit on the other side of the bed. She mumbles an affirmative as he digs a spoon into his own container, the ice cream quickly going soft in the smothering heat. They eat quietly for a few moments, Kate making low noises of appreciation as she puts a sizable dent in her sugary dinner.

"If we're not crossing Texas off the list tonight, you seriously have to stop making those sounds. You're killing me over here."

She laughs and takes a draw off her beer, angling her body to face him, legs crossed lazily. "Speaking of. Answer me this, Castle." Kate tucks the bottle into the bend of her knee and picks up her ice cream, spoon hovering over the top as she looks at him, head cocked to the side. "How exactly is it that we wound up in a fleabag motel in Nowhere, Texas when we had reservations at a really nice hotel in Dallas?"

"I was listening to that Texas playlist I made -"

"I knew that was a bad idea."

"And "Luckenbach, Texas" came on. It sounded so nice and simple and relaxing and I wanted to see it. Get back to the basics of love." She scoffs, spoon scraping against the cardboard walls of the tub. "So I checked the map -"

"Wait. You checked the map?"


"You checked the map and yet we still somehow ended up over 400 miles from where we are supposed to be?"

"It was only this much," he raises a hand, index finger and thumb held a few inches apart. "It didn't seem like that far."

"You didn't put it into your phone to check?"

"No signal."

"That," she points her spoon at him, exasperation etched across her face, "is why I didn't want to rent a car without GPS."

"Hey, that car turned you on more than I ever have. Don't even try to deny it."

Kate gives him a sultry grin and slides her spoon into her mouth, tongue swirling suggestively around the rounded edges. Her throat works as she sucks at the mound of melting ice cream, lips curling wickedly around the plastic cutlery. He watches a stream of mint chocolate chip flow slowly over the her right index finger, stalling out in the dam of her knuckle. Eyes glittering, Kate pulls the spoon from her mouth and replaces it with her finger, cheeks hollowing out as she sucks the melted ice cream from her skin with exaggerated force.

"You're evil," he croaks, shifting his hips across the stiff sheets, his shorts suddenly too small.

She gives him a cheshire cat grin and stabs the spoon back into the carton, slides it onto the dilapidated nightstand, pushing the beer along behind it. "What can I say?" Pushing up onto her knees, she slides closer to him on the bed, her bare legs glowing in the orange light of the setting sun. "All that horsepower really gets my motor running."

"Oh," he groans, his left hand wrapping around her thigh, "that was corny."

"You loved it and you know it."

Her fingers are cold and damp on his neck as she balances herself, swinging a leg over to straddle his thighs. Sitting back against his legs, she grins and plucks the ice cream from his hand, pulling out a spoonful of melting dutch chocolate. "Hey, you have your own," he whines, leaning forward to chase the spoon she's waving in front of his face.

"But yours looks so much better," she laughs, tilting the spoon toward her mouth. He watches her tongue dart out to lap at the ice cream, transfixed by the bright pink tip. Her hand changes direction suddenly and he yelps when the blob of chocolate lands in the middle of his chest, slipping quickly down between his pecs. Catching his eye, she leans forward slowly and sucks the ice cream from the crest of his abdomen, tongue dragging roughly over his skin as she moves up to clean the sticky residue off his chest. "Mmm," she hums, lips curling, "definitely better."

His hands clamp down on her thighs as she dips back into the container, eyes sweeping hotly over his body. The back of the spoon is cold when she drags it down the side of his neck, her tongue running in its wake. Castle slips his hands under the hem of her shirt and pushes, forcing her to lean back as he tugs the limp cotton up her torso. She rests the carton of ice cream against his stomach and raises her arms, lets him pull the shirt over her head. The pint tips over as she rocks back into him, spilling a lake of deep brown liquid onto his stomach. Kate scoops up the carton as he gasps, depositing it on the nightstand.

"Guess we'd better get you cleaned up," she grins, scooting back on his legs and leaning forward. His hands fist in the new sheet when her tongue swirls through his navel. She works from side to side, chasing the running rivulets of ice cream as they drip down over his obliques, her fingers curling at his waist. The swipe of her tongue travels lower, rasping over the thin line of hair decorating his lower abdomen. She pops the button on his shorts and presses an open mouth kiss, hot and wet, to the crest of his hip, her eyes darting up to meet his.

She cups him through the thin cotton of his boxers and slides back up his body until her lips rest alongside his left ear. "Did I get all of it?" She nips at his jaw and his hands wrap around her ribs, his forearms flexing as she resists his efforts to pull her into his chest. The hand between his legs rolls and twists and his hips jerk off the bed, the violent movement making her swaying breasts brush over his slick chest.

"I think you might have missed a spot or two," he answers at length, his voice low and jumping. Her tongue glances against his throat, tracing of the protrusion of his Adam's apple, and she slips back down his body, lips and tongue and teeth skimming randomly over his skin. Her hand never leaves him, fingers rolling over his erection through his boxers as she teases him with slow licks and sharp bites.

Her tongue dips under the elastic band of his boxers and he groans, his fingers trailing up and down her biceps. Kate grins up at him and reaches out for the ice cream, a wicked gleam in her eye. He watches in frozen fascination as she scoops a spoonful of the mostly liquid desert into her mouth, her throat convulsing as she rolls the sweetness around on her tongue. His head thumps against the wall when her lips close around him, the velvet heat of her tongue radiating through the wet chill of the ice cream, and he feels himself melting right along with their dinner.

Castle opens his eyes when she moans around him, his vision blurry with pleasure. Her eyes are open and fixed on his face as she bobs over him, her hips rolling in time with her tongue. He can feel the wet heat of her brushing over his calf with every undulation of her body, wants to feel her over him, on him, clamped down around him. Her left hand circles his base, twisting and fluttering over him, nails scraping across his pubic bone. Her eyes slip shut and he feels the back of her right hand scrape down his thigh. She shifts, pushing up onto her elbow, and he watches her fingers slip under the edge of her panties. The suction of her lips increases as she dips into herself, her wrist twisting against her inner thigh.

"Fuck, Beckett," he hisses, running the tips of his fingers over her shoulders and breasts. "Do you have any idea how hot that is?"

The heat of the room is nothing compared to the inferno blazing in her eyes as she looks up at him. She lets him slip from her mouth with a pop and pushes up to her knees, hand still rolling between her legs. Castle leans forward to touch her and she bats his hands away, her body lowering as she lets her knees spread wide on the bed.

"You get to watch," she rasps, "not touch."

Groaning, he flops back against the headboard and watches as she touches herself, the simple blue cotton underwear obscuring the movements of her fingers. Her body pitches forward and she catches herself with a palm pressed flat into the mattress between his legs, a keening moan washing hotly over his knees. Her braid sways with her breasts as she fucks herself, her back curving and twisting. He watches for as long as he can manage before swinging his leg over her head and pushing off the bed.

Kicking off his pants and boxers, Castle circles around to the end of the bed and wraps his fingers around her waist, tugging her soaking underwear down around her thighs. Without preamble, he kneels and drags his mouth over her hand, moaning as the musky scent of her arousal fills his nose. He dives into her, slipping his tongue between her thrusting fingers, his hands running up her thighs and ass, kneading the soft flesh as they both worth to break her apart. Her fingers slip down to circle her clit and he continues to lap at her, his tongue swirling and dipping as she pushes her hips back into his face. She comes on a muffled scream, her mouth wrapped around her own forearm, teeth digging into her skin.

He sits back on his haunches and stares at her for a moment, the perfect round curve of her ass calling to him. Kate groans when he leans in and nips at her, his hands skimming lightly over her thighs.

"Shit, Castle," she pants, rolling to her back and then sitting up to face him. She holds a hand out to him and he takes it, climbing up to sit sideways on the bed, his feet poking off the far edge. "That was - "

"Texas getting marked off the list," he grins, waggling his eyebrows at her.

"Not quite yet."

She pushes on his chest and he falls back easily. Kate swings a leg over his thighs, her back to him, and he looks down his body, watching as she takes him in hand and sinks down over him. She slips down at an agonizingly slow pace, teasing him with the tight heat of her body. Control slipping, Castle wraps his hands around her waist and bends his knees, heels digging into the edge of the bed as he slams up into her. Kate cries out and leans back, her hands braced wide on his stomach. He sets a frantic pace, one hand molded to her hip as the other runs over her body, caressing her thigh and ribs, skimming up to cup her breast as it bounces with the thrust of his hips.

"God, you're so hot," he grunts, thighs jerking erratically as she rolls over him. "You feel so fucking amazing, Kate."

One of her hands flees his stomach and he can feel the tips of her fingers grazing over him as she works her clit, dragging them both up the peak. Her braid falls across her back and swings, the frayed end sweeping through the arch of her spine with each pitch and roll. She starts to flutter around him, pulling him deeper and higher, and he grips her hip tightly, fingers pressing roughly into the sensitive flesh. With his last clear thought, Castle stretches an arm out behind him and snags the edge of the hat she'd discarded earlier, pushing it down onto her head just before she shudders and cries out his name, her body pitching forward with the rush of her orgasm. He pumps his hips one two three more times and then black spots float across his vision and he follows, her name a strangled growl in his chest.

The hat smacks him square in the chest and he rolls over, finds her flat on her back, chest heaving as she glares at him. "Not funny," she says eventually, sweat glistening on every inch of her body.

"How could I resist, Beckett?" He looks at her beseechingly, a faux pout hiding his grin. "You were," he waves a hand around his crotch, "and it was there. I had to. We both know you would have lost respect for me if I hadn't."

Kate rolls away from him and grabs her beer from the nightstand, finishing the lukewarm ale in three large swallows. With a glare, she stumbles out of the bed and grabs another bottle out of the fridge, using the edge of the door to pop the top. Castle props himself up on his elbows and watches her saunter toward the bathroom, the cold bottle dangling loosely from two fingers. The water squeaks on and he drops back down to his back, the humidity in the room pressing down uncomfortably on his skin. The spray of the shower almost drowns out the soft lilt of her voice.

"You coming, cowboy?"

Grinning, he pops off the bed and hits the door to the bathroom in two long strides, crossing the threshold just in time to see Kate's bare leg disappear behind the shower curtain. He yanks aside the thin plastic barrier and climbs in behind her, murmuring under his breath, "God bless Texas."