I posted my Christmas story in October does that mean I'm allowed to post my pseudo-New Years story before Christmas?

I say yes.

He's not entirely sure how he convinced her to come with him.

It started out as a joke. An "oh, I just got my invitation to the mayor's annual New Year's Eve party at the Plaza (because, you know, me and Bob? We're like this) and do you want to be my date" har har har, because really if they were supposed to be keeping it a secret from the world they were together than the last thing they should be doing is going to a party together. And he was fine with it, really. He was perfectly content to spend the night at home with Kate, ringing in the New Year while his mother and daughter went out to celebrate the end of the year with their own respective crowds. He hoped to spend the evening with a bottle of good wine, the finest champagne known to man in a bucket of ice on the counter, kissing his extraordinary detective at midnight, before midnight, and hopefully long after midnight sans any sort of respectable clothing.

He was looking forward to it, actually.

He never expected her to say yes.

But she had.

He'd brought it up in the precinct and expected her to roll her eyes, shrug it off and tell him that he should take Ryan as his date before getting up to get coffee.

But she hadn't.

Instead, her eyes widened when he asked her. She looked away quickly, her brow furrowing as she stared blankly at her computer screen. He was about to apologize, to tell her that he was just joking when she turned back to him, her eyes wide when she quietly asked if he thought it was time.

They'd been together for almost eight months.

They couldn't hide it forever.

He'd chosen his words carefully, told her that they didn't have to confirm anything. The party would be big enough, full of enough of New York's elite that he didn't think they would be in the spotlight, and even if they were it wouldn't be for long.

So it was decided. They'd go, and act like themselves. If people thought they were there as friends, so be it. If they thought they were there as partners, so be it. If they thought they were together, so be it. They would just go and enjoy themselves.


In public.

He hadn't realized how badly he wanted that.

She went home to get ready, and he was at her door at 8:30 to take her to the party, his black tie uncomfortably snug around his neck as he held a single rose for her because this was a date dammit and he'd be damned if he didn't get her flowers. He took a deep breath as she opened the door, his breath catching in his throat as he took her in.

He'd offered to buy her a dress when she asked him the dress code, and he'd narrowly avoided being maimed when she told him that she was perfectly capable of dressing herself. And the black cocktail dress that she wore as she opened up the front door, barely long enough to brush against her fingertips, covered with an emerald green bead design from the very bottom up until the modest neckline around her collarbones, her legs covered with opaque black tights that ended with a pair of solid black stilettos on her feet made sure that he would never doubt her again.

He stared at her, his throat bobbing as he tried to think of something to say to her, but she just plucked the flower from his hand and put it on the table beside her door, grabbed her phone and her house key in exchange for the rose and stepped over the threshold of her apartment, turning off the light as she shut the door behind her. She locked up before sliding her phone and key into the pocket of his slacks, smirking as she brushed a long, free, curly lock of hair behind her ear and grabbed the lapels of his suit jacket, pulling him towards her for a kiss.

It wasn't until they made it into the elevator that he managed to say hello.

When he found her again, she was talking to the man standing behind the open bar. He had been talking to the Mayor for a moment about their next poker match and she had excused herself to go to the restroom. Apparently she had found made her way to the bar after that.

The bartender was older, older than him, probably around her father's age and he was laughing, a smile around the corner of his lips as he nudged a glass of champagne towards her. Castle smiled, excusing himself from Bob before making his way over to her, watching as she smiled at the gentleman behind the bar, taking a small sip from her flute.

He'd watched as she talked easily to Bob as if they had known each other for years, flashed easy, confident smiles at the Police Commissioner and the Chief of Detectives, talked with some young socialites about shoes and fashion, never once looking uncomfortable. He was floored by how easily she slipped into this world, so proud of how it looked to have her on his arm because there was not a single man in the room that hadn't done a double take when she walked into their space.

And now she was talking to the bartender like they had known each other their entire lives, watching the man, who had been working this same party for years, smile genuinely for the first time he could remember.

Before he could reach her, she sensed him near her and looked up at him with sparkling eyes, her smile growing more than he ever thought possible.

"Hey," she whispered as he sidled up next to her, his hand coming up to brush against her back.

"Hey," he murmured back, "You having fun?"

Kate bit her lip, nodding once before gesturing towards the bartender who was looking

"Seamus was just telling me about some of the things he's seen over the years," she said, trying to contain her smile.

Seamus scoffed.

"She's lying," the bartender said, his European accent thick, his smile still firmly in place, "I was trying to get the lovely lady to tell me which of these lucky fellows here was her date, but I guess I don't have to wonder anymore."

Castle smiled at the bartender, bumping his shoulder against Kate's.

"I am very lucky," he answered, moving his gaze to Kate.

"Now…" he continued, taking a step away from her and holding out a hand, "… am I lucky enough to get a dance with my date?"

The song was slow and he had one of his hands settled on the swell of her hip, the other clutching her hand between them as the jazz band's harmonies drifted between the two of them. Her eyes are closed, her cheek settled against his shoulder and he closed his eyes, too, tried to breathe her in because in that moment, there was no one else but her. There was still an hour until midnight and the dance floor was essentially empty, the majority of the room mingling and drinking copious amounts of champagne on the sidelines.

He felt her sigh, a soft, hot breath against the skin of his neck and he shifted to look at her, his eyes opening as he found her gaze.

"You tired?"

She blinked up at him.


He pressed on, sensing something else running through her mind.

"Do you want to stop dancing?"

He saw her eyes dart over to the side of the dance floor before she shifted away from him slightly, her teeth worrying her bottom lip.

Despite what he thought, there had been eyes on them all night. Bob had them pegged from the first moment he saw them together, was polite and cordial to their faces but as soon as Kate was pulled away to say hello to the Chief of Detectives and his wife, he had congratulated Rick for finally getting the girl, and promised that he would keep their secret for them.

He looked around the room, watching as the people surreptitiously looked away as he looked at them, shaking his head slightly as they tried to hide their knowing smiles behind their champagne flutes.

"Do you mind if we leave?" he heard her whisper.

He looked down at her, the two of them merely swaying on the dance floor and he wanted so badly to kiss her.

"If we leave now it will be more suspicious," he warned, still fighting the urge to lean down and capture her lips with his own.

Kate sighed, looking down for a moment before gazing at him from underneath her lashes.


He looked at her for a moment, her eyes sparkling up at him like the gems on her dress, and he couldn't say no.

"Just let me say goodbye to some people."

Her heels were already off by the time he steps out of the elevator, her free hand busy pulling her phone out of his pocket. When he unlocked the door to the loft, she'd been tapping away, her eyes concentrating on the screen even as he lead her into loft, taking her shoes from her hand and putting them beside the door. He loosened his tie from around his neck, rolling up the sleeves of his dress shirt after he tossed his jacket on the back of a chair. He rubbed a hand across his face, looking at his watch and seeing that there was just under an half an hour left until the New Year, and while he hadn't spent the night in with Kate like he had originally planned, he knew she would appreciate a glass of the wine he had bought for the occasion.

He took a step towards the kitchen and immediately stopped and the feeling of her fingers around his wrist. He turned back towards her, and she tucked her phone into the pocket of his dress shirt, moving around and wrapping an arm around his neck, the other moving from his wrist to wind their fingers together.

"I told you I didn't want to stop dancing."

He smiled at her, finally hearing the soft music coming from his pocket that she must have pulled up on her phone, and he started to dance, leading her around the living room.

He's not entirely sure how long they danced, one song smoothly switching to another before he finally spoke up.

"We were doing this at the party," he whispers in her ear, the only other sound the soft music coming from her phone in his pocket.

He could have sworn he could feel the blush on her cheek against her neck as she pressed herself closer against him.

"I just wanted to dance with you," she murmured, tilting her head to press a kiss to his throat before she settled back against him, "just you."

He nodded slightly, leaning down the small distance and pressing a kiss against her hair.

He understood what she meant completely.

"Well," he said, shifting his hold on her slightly, "in that case…"

He quickly spun her out, smiling as she gasped, her stocking covered toes slipping on his hardwood floors but his grip on her hand kept her from falling. He brought her back towards him, spinning her in his arms and she laughed before he dipped her low, her curls spilling towards the ground as her leg instinctually came up off the ground. She smiled at him, her chest rising and falling with suppressed giggles (yes, he knows she does that now) and he couldn't help but lean down and kiss her, his arms tightening around her as she deepened the kiss, opening her mouth to him like she had been waiting all night to do so.

Perhaps she had.

He stood her upright when he could feel his arms start to give out but she refused to move away, unwinding their arms so she could wrap them around his neck, kissing him all the while.

Her hips bumped against his and he couldn't stop the groan that pulled itself from his lips and her hips picked up an imaginary song, grinding out a slow rhythm against him.

He pulled away from her with a growl, his hands moving to her sensuous hips, trying to stop her.

"You're going to kill me," he said closing his eyes and shaking his head as if that would help him get his control back..

Her eyes flashed, a smirk finding its way onto her lips as she leaned in, breathing out against his lips.

"I still want to dance," she said on a heavy exhale.

His grip on her hips tightened at her tone, but she pushed against him, grinding against him, one of her hands moving to run through the hair at the nape of his neck, the other pulling his tie completely off of his neck.

"Why Detective Beckett," he said, sending up a prayer of thanks that his voice sounded normal, "I'm beginning to think this was all some nefarious plot to get me home and seduce me."

Kate hummed, looking up at him with hooded eyes, her hips still moving against his as she tugged him towards her, walking them backwards to his bedroom.

"I wasn't aware that I needed a plot," she said, her eyes never leaving his, "I figured you would come willingly."

"You know me all too well."

She barked out a laugh and he felt the back of his knees hit the edge of his bed. He sank down slowly, pulling her down with him until she was lying flush against his body, her knees falling on both sides of his hips.

Her hands went to work, slowly undoing the buttons off his shirt as she leaned up, his hands sliding to the hem of her dress, fingertips feeling the lacey edge of her thigh-high stockings. She pressed her lips to his ear as she braced her palms flat on his torso, and whispered in his ear.

"I'll lead."

(that awkward moment when this was totally inspired by the first verse/bridge of a Justin Bieber song)


(and you wouldn't have even known if I didn't tell you)

(Happy Holidays everyone.)

(Oh, and for anyone curious, to see Kate's dress, go to promgirl dot com / shop / dresses / viewitem - PD902318, in the black/emerald )