A/N: Hiya guys! I'm back with a Castle one-shot. This is incredibly fluffy, so if you like that stuff, I'm your gal!

Up in Queensland for a holiday, but I wanted to get this out, seeing as the premier for the next season is out in just a few hours and this little story was written during season 4.

I like the idea of Castle actually knowing she lied, but hey, Marlowe needs the added drama to make their eventual get together more spectacular. I'm not complaining, and I don't think anyone else is about that scene in Always. it was HOT!

Can't wait for season 5!

All italics are a dream, this is called nightmare so obviously it starts with one :)

I think I have another story that needs to come out before the new season, and seeing as its 8am here, I may not be able to get it out, but I'll try.

Happy reading. If there's any mistakes, let me know.


Kate Beckett stood at the podium in her dress blues, giving a painful eulogy for her mentor.

She loved this man like a father. He pushed her, praised her, encouraged her, brought her back from the brink when her own father wasn't there, and most of all saved her with his last breath, giving up his family and his life to do the right thing by her and her mother; trying to make up for a stupid mistake he made as a rookie.

Kate will always remember Roy Montgomery for that; for all the good things he had done for everyone he knew.

Looking to her partner, the man who would do anything for her; she tried to convey the apology for yelling at him, and thanks for coming to her after all those awful things she had said and pulling her away, saving her. It was only a second that she glanced at him, but all they ever really needed was a look; they could always read each other. Her concentration was pulled back to the reason why they were all here and continued her eulogy to the great man that was no longer with them.

She looked up and saw Castle starting towards her. Shock covered her face and then she heard the shot ring out across the quiet cemetery.

Her breath was knocked out of her as Castle's body tackled her to the ground behind the podium, away from the eyes of most people celebrating this great man. They hit the ground – hard - together with a grunt. She didn't know what had happened. Her ears rang for a few seconds more, until they settled and she heard the screams around them.

'Castle, get off me,' she said pushing at him slightly. He didn't move, he just moaned. Then she felt it as her hand brushed down his back. Bringing her palm into sight she saw the red liquid on her hands.

'No! No, Castle!' she said pushing him off her with increased strength. He groaned in pain as she rolled him over.

'Kate,' he rasped, as she kneeled over him, stroking his face.

She looked up at his family. Alexis and Martha's faces were covered in agony, shock and heart wrenching pain.

'No, Castle! You stay with me! You're family needs you.' She told him, feeling the tears run down her face. 'I need you, Castle.' Kate breathed. 'You can't leave me, Rick.'

A weak smile spread across his face as she said it. 'I knew it.'

Kate laughed once as tears poured down her cheeks. 'You're not allowed to leave me, Rick. I'm not done with you yet.' Kate could see the blood oozing into the grass and his eyes start to flutter closed.

'No, Rick. Please, stay with me!' she begged.

'I love you, Kate. I love you.' Rick whispered as his eyes fell closed and head went slack.

Pushing his chest down, his blood soaked through his shirt and her white gloves; she prayed for the paramedics to get there, now. She couldn't lose him. she couldn't imagine her life without him now.

'Kate!' Lanie yelled as she rushed to her side and started working on her partner. Lanie's hand shook as she hovered over Castle's body, doing everything she could to save the man. As the paramedics came, Lanie was straddled across his body, trying to keep his heart pumping. Kate didn't wait for an invitation when the ambulance doors opened, and got in after everyone. As the doors closed, she saw Alexis and Martha on the ground, hugging each other as they cried. Guilt washed over Kate's body. I did this. It's all my fault.

The ride to the hospital was – she couldn't explain it. Horrible and agonising just didn't seem to cut it. She watched as tears poured down Lanie's cheeks as she attacked Castle's chest, desperately trying to keep him alive.

The waiting room was just as bad. Ryan and Esposito had brought Alexis and Martha to the hospital. Everytime her eyes fell over them, heart wrenching guilt and pain washed over her. Alexis wouldn't look at her and Martha looked like her world had ended. Kate had destroyed their lives.

When the doctor came out, she saw it was Josh.

'Family for Richard Castle?' he called. Martha and Alexis both jumped up.

'I'm sorry.' Josh told them, not nearly as much sympathy as they needed. 'There was nothing we could do.'

The women slumped against each other again, not quite finding the comfort they wanted from each other. The comfort they needed had died on that table. Kate broke, but she didn't break down, she was angry.

'No!' she yelled at her boyfriend, pushing him back towards the OR doors. 'You go in there and you save him!'

'Kate, he's gone!' he told her angrily. Kate pushed passed him and into the OR. His body was lying on the table, white and lifeless. Walking over, her hand shook as she pushed his hair out of his face. His eyes were staring up at the ceiling. It shook her, deeply. They no longer held the playfulness and spark they once had. Kate watched the trembling hand reach out and close his eyelids. No longer able to hide the emotions surging through her, tears barrelled down her face with increasing speed. Bending down, she kissed his lifeless lips.

'I love you,' she whispered as she sobbed over him, knowing she was too late.

Kate woke with tears streaming down her face, breathing heavily. Her head hurt as she had sat up with speed that almost gave her whiplash. Her knees came up and she rested her elbows on them as she continued to cry and raked her fingernails through her hair.

This wasn't the first time this dream had plagued her. She didn't usually get that far into it though. Normally Castle would tackle her, he'd pass out and she'd wake up. She had never seen his body lifeless like that and it scared her.

She wanted to kick her subconscious firmly in the butt, though. He still managed to say 'I love you', even when he's the one that was dying. But what was worse, it was the first time she had said it back and she was still too late; he was already dead. She wanted to tell him before it was too late, but she still couldn't muster up enough courage to tell him she loved him, or that she heard him. it would break his heart to know she had been lying to him for this long.

Kate flopped back on the pillow and sighed again. Everything was so complicated. Her breath was finally getting back to a normal pace as she rubbed her face. It was 2am, and she was cold. Her central heating was up at the normal temperature, but she was still shaking. Getting out of bed she dressed, rugging up to brave the cold outside.

It wasn't rational what she was doing, but she needed to see him. To feel his heart beat, and see his chest rise and fall telling her he was breathing. She needed to see the colour in his face telling her she still had blood pumping in his veins.

Knowing she couldn't drive, she walked to his apartment, giving her some time to get her head and thoughts together so she wouldn't completely lose it when she saw him. It must have been close to 3am by the time she got to his door, his doorman not even blinking in surprise that she was here at this hour.

She knocked before she had a chance to regret her decision of coming over here. She waited a few minutes and was about to leave when the door opened. Sighing with relief when Castle opened the door, he looked at her confused.

'Beckett?'

She jumped on him, throwing her arms around his neck, holding him close to her body. After a moment of shock, Castle's arms encircled her body, gently stroking up and down her back as she gripped him tightly.

Kate breathed him in, touched him as much as she could and felt his heart beating against her chest. She started to retreat when she felt it pick up its pace.

'Sorry, Castle.' she sighed, a small smile gracing her face with relief as she let him go. 'I just... Never mind.' She said shaking her head. 'Sorry, Castle.' Kate turned to leave when she felt his hand catch her arm.

'Hey.' He said, his hand sliding down her arm to her hand. 'Kate, what's wrong? Have you been crying?' he asked with concern.

Kate didn't check her face before she had left. She must have had tear stains on her cheeks still. Kate let him pull her into his apartment to the couch. He took off her coat before she sat down. She wasn't fighting him, and by the look in his eyes she could tell he knew something was wrong; she always fought him slightly, eventually giving in.

'Kate,' he began. It was breathy, full of concern and the need to make everything better. He stroked her cheek gently, keeping close enough that she could feel the warmth of his body.

She couldn't deny him this, it didn't help that he wasn't playing fair; Kate had a feeling he knew it; he always knew when it came to her. Kate folded and told him; some of it anyway. 'I had a nightmare.' She told him quietly. Kate rung her hands together, still shaking and trying to keep it together.

'So you came all the way over here for me to make you some warm milk?' he joked. She laughed a little. He always knew what she needed, this time was no exception. He also knew there was more to it that just a nightmare.

'It was a nightmare about you.' She clarified after a few moments of silence. 'I just, I needed to see you.'

He pulled her into his arms and hugged her tightly. 'It's ok,' he soothed, stroking her hair. As soon as he did this, Kate stopped shaking as his warmth seeped through her.

Rick stayed there, holding her in his arms until she pulled away looking him in the eyes. He wanted her to continue but he also didn't want to push her, Kate could see it in his eyes.

'We were... at the cemetery, when I got shot.' Kate felt him suck in a breath and still slightly. They hadn't talked about this too much, just when Rick asked her if she remembered anything, more importantly what he said.

'You tackled me, and got shot instead of me,' Kate continued. She really didn't want to break down again, but she didn't realise telling him would make her crack again. The look on his face was what did it to her; filled with sadness and pain. 'You jumped in front of the bullet, Rick. And as much as I begged, you didn't stay with me.' She confessed quietly.

'Oh, Kate.' He took her hand and squeezed it tightly. He wiped her tears away with his other hand and cupped her cheek. 'I'm right here, and I'm alive. I'm not going anywhere.'

'I know,' she sighed. And then she spoke. She said what she didn't want to tell him yet, but she couldn't stop herself. She didn't want to waste anymore time. 'Rick, I need to tell you something, and you are going to hate me for it.'

'I doubt that, Kate.' He told her confidently. 'I highly doubt it.' He kissed the crown of her head.

Kate bit her lip. Her heart was beating out of her chest with every second as she looked into his eyes. She could see what everyone else saw, she just denied that she saw it too. Rick loved her, and she could see it in his clear blue eyes. She didn't want to make them angry or sad ad what she was about to say was going to hurt him.

'Rick, the day at the cemetery; I remember... everything.'

He looked away and sucked in a breath. 'I know.' He said looking back at her.

She frowned and did a double take. 'What?'

'I know you remember. I know you're tells, Beckett.' She flinched at the use of her last name, but he didn't move his hands away from her. When Rick looked back at her, she saw a smile on his face: he was teasing her. But Kate also saw happiness in his eyes now.

Kate was dumbfounded. She had been expecting a fight worse than last year, after she told him to leave her apartment. But, here he was, sitting with her, his face showing nothing but happiness and love. She didn't know if it was her lack of sleep playing with her mind, or what, but it just didn't compute that he wasn't bursting with anger.

'Why aren't you angry?' Kate asked hesitantly. She wanted to know why, that was in her nature, but she wasn't sure if she could handle the answer.

'I was just waiting for you to tell me when you were ready.' Rick said simply.

'You couldn't have known that I would have, Rick. You of all people know I'm stubborn.'

'You're right,' he huffed. 'You are stubborn.' Kate laughed a little as he continued; now cupping her cheek. 'But I'm your partner, your friend. I knew you would break eventually, the weight being too much without your conscience wanting to rectify it.'

'That's some thin ice there, Castle. It seems slightly circumstantial.'

'You want proof? Ok, you tell me everything eventually, though it may take a while.' He started counting them on his fingers. 'You wanted me back in your life, after years of complaining about how you wanted to get rid of me. And – most importantly – you broke up with Josh.'

She sat there in wonder at the man before her. Kate loved that he knew her so well, but also hated it at the same time.

'You couldn't have been sure, Rick.'

'I would have waited, as long as it took. Besides, I had a backup plan.'

'Oh?'

'Yup, I was going to write it on your morning coffee.'

She laughed loudly. It felt like a weight had been lifted off her shoulders now that he knew that she knew. She was giddy and light and with him.

'What?' he asked her.

Kate calmed down, watching the little smile play at his lips. Putting a hand around the back of his neck, she pulled him towards her. Their lips gently brushed each other, before becoming a whirlwind of lips, tongues, teeth, pulling and pushing. Finally breaking away for air, they leaned against one another's foreheads.

'I love you, Rick.' Her hot breath whispered against his skin. Again she hadn't meant to say it, but she meant those words, with all the pieces of her shattered heart. Realising now, she didn't need to be mended to be with him, he would help her do that – no, Kate just needed him.

He moaned a little, laced with need, as she said those words he had been longing to hear. He pulled back to look her in the eyes properly, and she could see the contagious smile that had been plastered on his face, making her lips curl too.

'I love you, Kate. So much.' He wiped a tear away that had escaped off her cheek, before kissing her again. The kiss was far less frenzied this time, and more about Rick trying to convey the love he had for her. It was making her heart ache with how much emotion there was seeping through their joined lips.

As their kiss became heated with built up lust and need, he pulled away, trailing hot kisses down her neck, making her shiver. 'Sorry,' he murmured against her skin. 'I didn't mean to push.'

'You were the one who pulled away, Rick. Not-' he bit into her shoulder lightly making her gasp. 'Not me.' She continued slightly breathily.

He moved from her shoulder to look her in the eyes. She missed his lips on her skin and frowned. 'I want to do this right, Kate. I want to date you, take you out to nice restaurants, to the movies, to the theatre, and walk you to your apartment to only kiss you good night, while secretly wanting to stay.'

Kate smiled. He wanted to wine and dine her. It was sweet, and romantic, and so him. But she had made up her mind. She wasn't going home tonight.

'The only thing you haven't done in that list is the theatre. We've been out to dinner before, I took you to Forbidden Planet – which by the way, you are still not off the hook for – and I'm pretty sure every time you leave my apartment, you not-so-secretly want to stay. Truth be told, I wanted you to stay.'

'None of them were real dates, Kate and you know it. I want to give you what you deserve. A lifetime of romance.'

'Rick, I don't need any of that stuff. I just need you. But if you want dinner dates; there's a nice little cafe down the road from my apa-' his lips captured hers again in a heated kiss.

'Kate Beckett needs me.' He smiled.

'After four years of partnership and you've only just figured this out? You are really slow on the uptake, Rick.'

'Kate Beckett wants to date me.'

'Always did, even before I met you.' She admitted shyly. She was waiting for an egotistical comment about "how he always knew that" or "you really are a fangirl", but he didn't say anything, just smiled a little wider.

'Kate Beckett loves me.' Ricks voice now turning to a whisper.

'With all my heart.' She replied.

He took her hand a pulled her after him. They reached his bedroom and she hesitated. Didn't he say date first?

'No sex, Kate. I just want to wake up next to you.' Rick said as he pulled her towards the bed. He stepped in front of her and started to remove her clothes. Pulling her jumper over her head, unbuttoning the shirt she had on underneath that slowly pulling it off her shoulders, until he got to her tank top. When he started at her jeans, she had to smack his hands away.

'Not going to be able to restrain myself you take them off.' She confessed. Rick chuckled before kissing her again and moving to his dresser. He pulled out a pair of boxers for her.

'You'll be more comfortable in these.' He said giving them to her and turning around. Quickly shucking the jeans and sliding his boxers on, she moved behind him, wrapping her arms around his belly.

'Ready for bed, Mr Castle?' she purred in his ear.

Without saying a word, he took one of her hands and led her to the bed, pulling back the covers. He laid her down gently pulling up the blankets and went to the other side, repeating the process for himself. Turning off the bedside lamp, she felt him move behind her, an arm gently wrapping around her waist pulling them closer together, until their bodies were flush. He kissed her neck once and chastely.

'I have today off.' She said looking at the clock that now read 4am.

'I know.'

'Your wining and dining can start at breakfast.' She smiled. 'I think I'm gunna want pancakes.'

'Whatever you want.' He chuckled and hummed in agreement before speaking again. 'I love you, Kate.'

'I love you, Rick. Always.'

His arm tightened at her last word, and he kissed her neck one last time before they both succumbed to sleep. Not once did her nightmare return.


A/N: Let me know what you think.

Reviews give me a happy :)