For never being maddening or frustrating,
but for always challenging my mind with Castle theories and your remarkable talent for editing my stories.
Never forget how extraordinary you are.
Behind Closed Doors
Beckett frowned as she heard a knock at the door. She wasn't expecting anybody but quickly hurried over to the door hoping it was Castle. Things just hadn't been right with them recently and she hoped he was coming over to explain why. He always had the knack for turning up right when she needed him. Whether she wanted him there, or not. Beckett pulled open the door without checking who it was and the smile that was on her face dropped slightly when she saw who stood before her.
"Nice to see you to," Lanie snarled at her. "Here."
Lanie shoved a bottle of red wine towards her. Beckett looked at the very tempting bottle but didn't take it.
"What are you doing here Lanie?"
"I want to know what's going on with you girl?"
"Nothing," Beckett sighed.
"Don't give me that."
Lanie pushed past her and made her way over to the kitchen bench.
Beckett rolled her eyes but shut the door and followed the path Lanie had taken. She pulled out a corkscrew as Lanie settle in on one of the stools placing her phone and the wine on the bench. Beckett grabbed the bottle and opened it.
Lanie raised an eyebrow at her. "So spill girl. What's going on with you?"
Beckett took a sip of her wine before answering. "It's not me. It's Castle."
"Something happened. Something changed. It's been weird between us lately."
"Lately?" Lanie questioned. "Kate, it's been weird for four years."
"No, this is different. He's different." Beckett insisted. "It's like he is pulling away."
"Well can you blame him? He's probably tired of waiting." Lanie took a sip from her glass.
Beckett was briefly stunned. "Waiting for what?"
"What do you think? The guy is crazy about you. And despite your little act, you're crazy about him."
Beckett looked up at her friend and frowned while shaking her head. Lanie wasn't buying it though.
"Oh what? Was that supposed to be some big secret?" Lanie asked unimpressed with Beckett's lack of acceptance of the truth.
Beckett threw her hand out in frustration. "Yes"
At Lanie's slightly annoyed look Beckett changed her answer.
"No." Beckett sat down in her chair. "Do you think he knows?"
"You remember how he used to be. Girl on either arm. You really don't see too much of that guy anymore. Why do you think that is?"
Beckett stared at her friend analysing what she said about Castle.
"He's waiting. For you." Lanie pointed at her in case there was any misconception on who 'you' was.
"Yeah but Lanie."
"I know you're dealing with stuff. But you cannot ask him to wait forever. Unless you are ok with him pulling away?"
Beckett sighed deeply. No she wasn't. She wasn't ok with Castle pulling away.
"He is already starting to pull away. How can I stop that?"
"Well you could always show him a little appreciation."
Beckett rolled her eyes. "Oh like how Laine. Walk up to him in the middle of the precinct and say. 'Oh Castle you make me so hot when you help me solve things'."
Lanie laughed. "Well it's a start."
Beckett stood up and put down her glass of wine.
"I just don't know what to do Lanie."
"What do you want to do Kate?"
Beckett stared at her friend. Lanie was here to help and always had her best interests at heart.
"I want to..."
Lanie nodded at her. "Yes."
"I want to fuck his brains out."
Lanie spewed her wine out all over the table and started coughing.
"Lanie are you ok?"
Beckett watched as Lanie took in a few deep breaths. Lanie nodded and took another sip of her wine trying to clear her throat. Beckett looked up surprised when she heard a frantic knock at her door. What was with people turning up at her place unannounced? Beckett went and opened the door and was beyond shocked when she saw a flustered Castle standing before her.
"What are you doing here?" she asked surprised.
"I think we need to talk about what you want to do with my brains."
"Whaaaa. How did you...?"
Castle held up his phone and waved it around.
"Lanie!" Beckett gritted her teeth and turned to look at her so called friend.
"And that is my cue to leave." Lanie gathered her things and quickly headed out the door. "Oh and by the way I accept gifts in the form of Prada and Tiffanies."
"Oh you will be receiving a gift from me Lanie" Beckett yelled out into the corridor. "But it won't come in little blue box with white ribbon. It will be black. And glossy. And six feet under!"
Beckett took a brief look at Castle who was still standing in her doorway, before she turned around and headed back to her kitchen.
"I am not doing this without more wine," she told him as she picked up the bottle and filled her glass to the brim. She never understood why they made those glasses so big if you were only meant to half fill them. "You want some?"
"No I'd rather keep a clear head."
Beckett shrugged. "Your loss." Taking a deep long gulp of her wine Beckett finally mustered up the guts to turn and face Castle. "So how much of that did you hear?"
"I heard everything."
Beckett frowned at that statement. Everything meant a lot of things but it wasn't very specific.
"Meaning what, exactly?"
"I was on the phone with Laine when she walked in."
Beckett nodded. She had seen Lanie place her phone on the table, but didn't think much of it.
"I also heard you that day in interrogation," Castle continued.
"What day?" Beckett asked confused.
"When you were speaking to the bombing suspect. You said you were shot in the chest and you remembered every single second of it. I told you I loved you, and you lied about it."
He knew. Castle knew she knew.
Beckett remembered the day he was talking about. When she was interrogating the suspect she had felt as if there were eyes on her, but had brushed it off. There was always someone watching behind the glass. She just hadn't realised it was Castle. When she had finished with the suspect she had come out to find a coffee on her desk. She had asked Esposito if Castle had been there and he acknowledge that he had, but left. Beckett had thought it was unusual for Castle to turn up and leave without saying hello, or at least leaving her some message. Now she knew why?
"Why didn't you say anything? Is that why you have been acting different?"
Castle threw his phone down on Beckett's counter in frustration.
"What was I supposed to do? What was I supposed to say? My best friend lied to me about something so important. Here I am, thinking I have finally found someone I can be myself around, someone I can trust and..." Castle couldn't finish his sentence. He couldn't even look at her. He turned around and stalked off. "I could handle rejection but did you have to slap me in the face too? Did it give you some perverse pleasure to..."
"No," she interrupted following him.
"Then why did you do it. Why did you lie?"
"It gave me something to hide behind," she spat out before she even realised it.
Castle turned to look at her. He shook his head in confusion. "Why were you hiding?"
Beckett took a step closer to him so they were only inches apart. "People hide for two reasons Castle. One, they are playing hide and seek or two, they are scared."
Castles eyes narrowed at her.
"The last time I checked Castle, you weren't counting to 100!"
"I don't understand. What were you scared off?"
"Of losing you," Beckett sighed and took a step back. "Because of me. Of who I am, of what I am. I am scared that I am not enough for you Castle, or that I am too much. My life is so messed up. I didn't want to drag you into that. I wanted to give us a fighting chance and I couldn't do that while my life was in turmoil. I wanted to wait until I could be someone you deserved."
Castle took a step towards her and hesitantly ran a hand down her arm.
"What I deserve is someone to love me for me, faults and all. And I need for them to be themselves while doing it. Because that's the person I fell in love with."
"You say that now," she challenged stepping away from his touch
"I say it because it's the truth. Don't you think I haven't had the same insecurities about myself, that I am not good enough for you?"
Beckett threw her hands up in frustration. "Oh come on your Richard Frikken Castle. Your ego has an ego."
As soon as the words were out of her mouth she regretted them. She saw the pain immediately in Castles eyes.
He shook his head at her. "And you call yourself a detective. All that ego, all that bravado, it's just an act to sell some stupid books. I thought you knew that, I thought you saw the real me."
Beckett sighed. The real me! In today's world it was hard to see what was real and what was an act. For awhile there she had thought she was seeing The Real Richard Castle. Playboy, media lover, egocentric. Slowly the real Castle shone through. The Castle that brought her coffee everyday and forced her to eat even when she wasn't hungry. The Castle that challenged her, in cases and in life. She saw through his act just like he had seen through hers, so many times.
Beckett shrugged at him. "I thought I did see the real you. Now you're telling me that the real you, is insecure and not good enough for me. I am sorry Castle but I am finding that hard to believe."
"Of course I am insecure" he told her. "Look at the last three men you have dated. Doctor. Cop. FBI. All powerful people who save lives. I am a writer who saves pages and pages of whimsical nonsense. You say your life's a mess, take a step back and look at everyone else around you. Lanie hates her mother. His cousin is the first person we have ever met or heard of from Esposito's family. Ryan had to have Jenny's half brother as his best man so not to cause conflict with his new family. Then there's me. Ex wives. Ex whatever's. An almost adult daughter and don't even get me started on my mother. We all have baggage Beckett. It may not be as heavy as yours but we all have something. It shouldn't define who we are though. We are more than that."
Beckett had to take a few moments to take in everything Castle had just flooded her with. His mind had a tendency to jump from topic to topic. When Castile started to move she panicked thinking he was leaving. Instead he walked past her and picked up her abandoned glass of wine. He mimicked her large gulp before putting the glass down. He looked up at the ceiling as if asking God for answers.
"This is me Beckett." He turned around to face her and held his arms out wide putting his whole body on display. "This is who I am." He lowered his arms and shook his head. "You know they say people can't change and I guess that's true. What people can do is stop pretending to be something they not. I am not a movie star or a celebrity, I never wanted fame. All I wanted was people to acknowledge that I exist. To see me. To like me. But most importantly, to love me. I shouldn't have to pretend to be something I am not to achieve that. I don't have a badge or a medical degree, all I have is me."
Beckett could hear the doubt in his voice. While she had spent months trying to be a better person for him, he had been going through the same torment. She had been going to therapy hoping it would help her, and it had. What could Castle do? He was right! He couldn't change himself and she didn't want him to.
"Yes I have dated cops and doctors and people who are strong both physically and mentally. It's only because they seemed to be the only people who can handle me. Until you. A badge or a degree mean nothing to me Castle. It's something they had to earn. It's something they had to learn."
Beckett took a step towards and couldn't help but stroke the lapel of his jacket. "What you have is worth so much more. You can learn about sentence structure and grammar but you can't be taught imagination and creativity. Power is all about perception. Those men had power because of a title they were given. Doctor. Agent. Detective. But Writer is powerful to. You have the power to transport every person who reads your work to another place full of wonderment and joy. Those other men may have saved lives Castle but you make lives worth living with your words. You help us get through the day to day. That's what makes you special."
A smile began to grow on his lips.
"So where do we go from here." he asked nervously.
"You shut up and start kissing," a tiny voice told them.
Beckett frowned and looked around.
Castle eyes widened. "I thought I hung up" he said reaching for his phone and unlocking it. " I must have just turned it off loud speaker." He tapped at the screen again putting it back on loud speaker.
Beckett leaned in closer to the phone. "Lanie, did you hear all of that?"
"Unfortunately," the other woman mumbled. "I'm not good enough for you," she said in a high pitched voice. "No I'm not good enough for you" she said switching to a low deep voice.
Beckett bit her lip and looked up and Castle who was looking a little guilty.
"Now would you to just get your freak on already. But this time hang up. I want to hear about you two hooking up but I don't want to actually hear the hook up."
Beckett rolled her eyes. "Bye Lanie."
Beckett tapped Castles phone and double checked that Lanie was gone.
"I am sorry," Castle told her. "I thought I turned it off."
Beckett shook her head. "It's fine. Saves me from telling her everything. And she will want to know everything."
Castle nodded as he fiddled with his phone making sure to turn it off. "Just so we are clear. The reason you lied is because you care about me but weren't ready to start a relationship."
Beckett shook her head. "No Castle, I don't care about you."
Castle looked up at her, eyes imploring.
"I Love you," she told him
Castle dropped his phone. He stared at Beckett then looked down at his abandoned phone, then back at Beckett.
"I.. I.. You.. You.." Castle gulped and then licked his lips and tried to string a proper sentence together. "You don't have to say that Beckett."
Beckett nodded. "I do Castle. I was too afraid to admit that before and I nearly lost you because of it. That scares me more."
Castle reached out and grabbed her hand. "Well you don't have to be scared anymore."
Beckett looked down at their joined hands and then laughed. "Can you imagine what Lanie would say about us holding hands?"
Castle followed her gaze and looked at their hands before unlinking them. "Umm. Yeah." He said suddenly embarrassed. "Pretty juvenile, huh? More wine?" Castle grabbed the glass they both had been drinking from and the bottle of wine and headed over to Beckett's couch.
Beckett rolled her eyes but smiled. Insecure Castle. She was going to have to rectify this. Sitting on the couch next to him, she waited for him to top up their wine glass before grasping his hand.
"This may not be what Lanie expected of us but it's nice." Beckett stroked her thumb over his hand.
A smile twitched to Castles lips. "Not that I am opposed to what Lanie suggested. I just want to take things slow."
Beckett squeezed his hand. "Me too. I want to get this right."
Castle nodded. "I am just not sure what to do now. I mean we know each other and everything but.."
"I have tomorrow night off," Beckett offered.
Castle nodded at her before taking a sip of wine. He offered her the glass and she took it.
"I usually eat at night," Beckett hinted again.
Castle nodded again before his eyes widened. "Oh, yeah of course." He turned to face her. "Beckett." He shook his head. "Kate. Would you have dinner with me tomorrow night?"
Beckett raised a brow at him. "Dinner?"
Castle smiled at her toying. "Yes dinner. I'll pick you up at 7. Wear something nice but not too fancy. I'll take you to this quaint little Italian restaurant. No paparazzi or fan fare. Just great food and real people."
Beckett smiled. He had planned the perfect date at a moment's notice. They were taking it slow and she wasn't up for cameras flashing in her face just yet.
"That sounds great Rick." she placed the wine glass on the ground and lifted their joined hands. "Can we speed this up just a little?" She shuffled closer to him and wrapped his arm around her.
"Beckett" Castle gasped. "You hussy."
Beckett laughed as she elbowed him lightly in the ribs. Castle squeezed her tight and she revelled in the sensation of being in his arms.
"So how did you convince Lanie to let you listen in on our conversation?" Beckett wondered trying to remember which Prada bag Lanie had been ogling at just last week.
"Me, convince Lanie. Ha. She practically had to bribe me. I didn't want to listen in on another conversation but she was pretty persuasive."
Beckett frowned. "How?"
"She promised me I could touch things."
Beckett smiled. "So does that mean I can get you to do whatever I want if I let you touch things?"
Castle laughed. "You know if you ever want me to do anything all you have to do is ask. I don't need to be bribed. Lanie offered to let me help out with an autopsy."
Beckett sat up from Castle's grasp. "Does that mean your now going to be writing a series about a sassy M.E who blackmails her friends for their own good?"
Castle pulled Beckett back down against his chest. "No. This was more out of my own gruesome curiosity rather than research."
"Well for once I am glad you're weird."
Castle laughed "Me too."
"You know she will never let us live this down right."
Castle sighed. "Yeah. I am thinking Prada, Tiffanies and maybe a spa weekend."
"Bribing her into silence?" Beckett asked.
"No. To say thank you. It's worth listening to her brag. She helped me get you."
Beckett smiled. He did have a point. If it wasn't for Lanie's meddling it could have taken forever for them to get their act together.
"Yeah I guess."
Castle tilted his head and placed a light kiss to Beckett's forehead.
"We owe Lanie big time," Castle told her.
Beckett nodded. "Just don't tell her that."
"I heard that," a muffled voice yelled through the door.
Castle and Beckett stared at each other in shock, before turning to look over the couch at the closed door.
Hope you liked it Lizzie and picked up on 3 special lines in this story that you probably weren't expecting
Behind Closed Doors