Disclaimer: I don't own anything except my OC's

Detective Kate Beckett was a mess.

Rick Caste had been missing for 12 years and the case had been cold just as long. Kate dropped her head to the desk in exhaustion; she didn't think she had had a decent night's sleep since he disappeared.

"Go home, Beckett." Ryan said from his desk.

"I've still got paperwork," She said, picking up her head to glare at both of them.

"Well, you won't be getting it done tonight. Go on, Beckett," Esposito said, coming into the conversation.

She sighed in defeat, not having the energy to argue back and began packing up her things. "You will call me if you get any leads?" She asked. They didn't have a current case, but even if they did she knew they knew what she meant.

"Do you have that little faith in us?" Ryan asked. Kate just shook her head and headed out of the precinct. Her phone buzzed; it was a text from Alexis.

I'm coming to the loft. You have to see this!

She shot a text back to her:

I'm leaving the precinct now.

She got to the loft and let herself in to find Alexis. "Hey. Where is Rikki?"

Alexis looked up, confused. "She isn't here and I didn't see any note when I came in, but I have only been here a couple of minutes."

Kate went upstairs to check the bedrooms while Alexis checked downstairs. She went back down, unsuccessful in her search.

"She isn't here, Kate."

She pulled out her phone and called Rikki now that she knew she wasn't at the house. Her stomach dropped when it went straight to voice mail.

She dialed another number. "Ryan, I need your help."

"Sure, what's up Beckett?"

"Rikki is missing. Will you trace her cell for me?"

"Kate, are you sure you just aren't overreacting?" Ryan said hesitantly.

Kate took a deep breath. "Something is wrong. I can feel it. Please."

She could tell that she had broken his resolve, "Fine." It was quiet for a moment except for the tapping of the keyboard on Kevin's end. "Uh oh."

Kate felt a chill run down her spine. "What's wrong, Kevin?"

"I can't get a trace. It's been deactivated."

Kate was attempting to get her breathing under control when Alexis pressed a cup of hot chocolate into her hand, fear evident on her face.

"Hold on Kate. Esposito and I will be right over. We'll figure this out."

Yeah, she thought, Just like last time.

13 years ago

Kate took a deep breath as she prepared to knock on Castle's door. Before she could chicken out, she knocked and froze, surprised with herself for actually doing it. Alexis answered.

"Detective Beckett. Hi."

"Hello Alexis. Is your dad home?"

"Yeah, come on in," Kate followed Alexis to the kitchen where Castle was cooking supper. "Beckett is here, Dad," she said before leaving the room.

"Hello Detective Beckett. Missed my charming persona already?"

"Castle, I need to talk to you. But if you're busy, it can wait until another time."

Castle studied her as she fidgeted. Something was wrong and he didn't want to make her wait.

"No worries, everything just has to cook. We can go into the living room?" He suggested.

"Sure." She said and followed him in there.

"What's wrong Kate?" he asked her once they were settled on the couch. She wouldn't meet his eyes; in fact, she was doing everything not to meet his eyes.

Kate took a deep breath and decided not to beat around the bush. She wanted to say what she needed to so that she could get all of it out of her system and out there before it ate her alive.

"I've been lying to you about something." She said quietly. She could tell that Castle had tensed next to her, even though she still wouldn't look at him.

"I told you… I told everyone- that I don't remember my shooting. That's not true."

She waited as he took in exactly what that meant. "Everything?" he asked in a whisper.

She closed her eyes, trying not to break down before turning and looking him in the eyes. "Everything."

"You heard what I said? And you are just now telling me?" Castle was fighting to keep his temper in check. There had to be a reason she was telling him this now. He got up and started to pace.

Kate thought he was leaving, "Castle, wait." She said. He stopped and looked at her. "Let me explain."

"So explain."

Kate looked at a loss for words for a moment before starting. "You have to understand. After the shooting, I was so scared. I push people away, Castle. I didn't even know if you had actually said it or if it was just my imagination since that was what I wanted to hear or if you were just saying it in the heat of the moment. And then you never brought it back up. It was easier to pretend that I didn't remember anything. That way, nobody would ask me about it and I could get my bearings again."

Castle softened with each statement and declaration from her. "So why tell me now."

"I realized something today…I realized that you don't always have as much time as you would like, especially with my line of work. You need to know…" She let out a sharp breath. "You need to know that I love you too, even if you don't feel the same way anymore."

Kate turned away, afraid to see the rejection that was probably all over his face.

"Kate," He said softly, touching her shoulders and turning her towards him. "I still love you." He tilted her head up.

She stood up on her toes and wrapped her arms around him before kissing him. It took him a second, but he quickly caught up. She pulled back only for him to capture her lips once more. When they were out of breath, they laid their foreheads against each other.

"So does this mean that you're my girlfriend now?"

Kate let out a breathy laugh. "Yes Castle."

12 years earlier

Richard Caste stared across the table at his captors. "What do you want with me? I can give you money."

"We don't wish harm to you Mr. Castle. We wish to help you."

"Help me?"

"You know that your partner's mother's killer is out there and is now after your 'muse.' We feel that the best way to protect you would be to get you out of the situation."

"What about Kate, Alexis and my mother? They need protection too."

"We have information that they are currently targeting you. The rest of your family will depend on how far they are willing to go."

"So what do you want me to do? Did you just bring my here to warn me?"

"Actually Mr. Castle, you will be going into the Witness Protection Program."

AN: So what do you think? I would love some feedback. Is the order of the story too hectic? If nobody tells me their opinion on the format, I will just stick with it.