I like to try and think of things that have not been done before, and so here's something that you may consider to be a little bit of a weird beginning, but I'm hoping it'll just be a good fun story with lots of fun and random moments. I don't want to give too much away right now, so I'll just get straight into the story. Before I start I will say that I do not own Castle.
"Ready… set… go"
The green and orange hippo heads bounced up and down on the board while the two controlling them roared with laughter, hitting the tail in front of them trying to get their hippo to eat the most white balls. The older of the two used his free hand to try to push the balls into his hippo's mouth.
"Daaaaaad, no cheating!" the young girl said back slapping his hand away.
Once all the balls were gone, they counted them to see who had the most.
"I have 9," Richard said with a sigh, knowing that once again he lost.
"10! I win again!" replied his daughter, Alexis.
They placed all the pieces back into the centre of the game ready to play another round.
"So, how is school going?"
"It's good. We're learning about all the different planets at the moments. It's really interesting. We've got a project to do where we have to make a model of the solar system so I've been working on that a bit. It's due next week, just before our break."
"That's great pumpkin. I'm sorry I haven't been there to help you."
"Grams is helping me, she…"
"Grams is helping you? Seriously?" he interrupted, surprised.
"Yeah, she's actually been really helpful. It's not the same as doing it with you, but she still makes it fun. She wants me to paint all my planets bright colours. But I want them to look more realistic. I really don't think Jupiter is bright pink like grams says," she said with a laugh.
"No, I don't think so either." He looked down at the game. "Ready?"
Again, they bashed at their hippo pieces until all the balls had been eaten, and once again Alexis won.
"How do you do it? Every single time?" Rick asked.
"I think you let your hippo go a little bit too crazy dad! You need to have more control."
"What do you mean? It's all about speed!"
"Speed hasn't been getting you anywhere for the last 10 games," Alexis stated while shaking her head. "Trust me. This time, I'll play the way you do and you try and control it, and I bet you anything, you'll win."
"Alexis Castle, you are much too young to be gambling."
Alexis raised her eyebrows at her father. "You know what I mean."
Rick placed the white balls in the middle of the game again and they started up another game. This time he tried his best to be more calm with his playing style, while Alexis tried to show him what he did wrong. He had to admit, she did make it look a little crazy. With just one ball left in the middle the pair fought over it, neither able to get it in their hippos mouth when Rick gave up on the 'calm' approach and he hit his hippo harder than usual and the game went flying from the table and onto the floor.
Alexis slapped her head with her hand and wiped it down her face. "Daaaaaaaaaaaad!" With a huff, she started crawling around the floor picking up all the pieces while her father sat in his chair trying not to laugh.
"What? I didn't do anything," he said with a shrug, and then he got down and picked up a few pieces himself.
At another table, Kate Beckett sat with her father, his hands clasped in hers.
"Really dad, how are you?" she asked.
"I'm fine Katie. I'm doing really well. Only another couple of weeks and I should be out of here."
"Really," Jim Beckett nodded.
"That's great dad! You know you are looking much better. I'm glad you decided to come here. For a while, I thought I was going to lose you too."
"I'm sorry Katie. You shouldn't have had to deal with that. I'm not going anywhere. You're stuck with me for a while longer yet," he smiled.
"So, tell me, hows work? Any exciting arrests lately?"
"No, not really. I put in my application for detective this week. They should be getting back to me over the next few weeks about that. I know I'm still young, so I'm not sure they'll accept it right now, but it's worth a try right? It brings me one step closer to be able to find some answers, not just for me, but for both of us."
"They'd be silly to knock you back! And please, just be careful. I want answers just as much as you do, but be careful."
Kate was about to tell her dad about the latest arrest she had made when a little voice spoke beside her. "Um…. Excuse me?" said the voice.
Jim and Kate both turned their heads to the red head standing by their table.
"Are you lost?" asked Kate, placing her had on the girls elbow, a move she knew to be calming without being overbearing.
"No, one of our playing pieces rolled under your table."
Jim looked under the table and noticed the small white ball. He picked it up and handed it back to the young girl. "Here you go."
"Thank you. I'll tell my dad to behave himself and not go so overboard with the game next time."
Both Jim and Kate laughed. "What are you playing?" Kate asked.
"Hungry hungry hippos."
"Oh I remember that game," Kate responded with a huge smile, thinking back on the fun times she had with her parents playing the silly game.
"Katie used to love that game," Jim said.
"Would you like to join us? We have room for two more." Alexis said pointing over to where her father was sitting.
When Rick saw his daughter pointing over to him, he pulled a funny face at her which made the two people she was talking to laugh. He wasn't sure who they were but he couldn't help but notice how beautiful the young woman looked when she smiled.
Alexis turned back to Kate and Jim. "That's my dad, he's a little weird, but he's cool. So would you like to play a game with us?"
"Oh, no, it's okay. You should have fun with your dad."
By now Rick had made his way over to his daughter to find out what was taking so long.
"Hi," he said reaching the table. "Alexis, did you get the piece?"
"Yeah, I was just inviting um…" she paused. "I forgot to ask their names," she said quietly to her father, feeling a little embarrassed.
"I'm Kate, and this is my father Jim," Kate said giving a wink to Alexis, trying to let her know that it was okay.
Rick held out his hand to Kate and shook her hand. "Richard Ca… Rodgers" he said, not wanting to divulge his author identity while he was at the centre. "And this is my daughter, Alexis." He then turned to shake Jim's hand. "It's a pleasure to meet you. So will you be joining us in our game then?"
"Oh no, it's ok, Mr Rodgers…" Kate started.
"Rick is fine"
"Ok then, Rick. You and Alexis should enjoy your game together."
When Rick looked down at his daughter, she looked a little disappointed. It seemed like she had really wanted some others to join them.
"Oh c'mon. You don't want my little pumpkin to go home sad now would you?"
"Dad!" Alexis said with wide eyes, and suddenly the sadness was replaced again by embarrassment because he had called her pumpkin in front of these other people.
"Shhhhh… this is going to work, trust me!" he whispered in her ear.
Then he looked back at the beautiful woman sitting in front of him and gave her the cheesiest smile he could manage. "Pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeease," he said.
Kate looked from the man standing in front of her, to his daughter, who had adopted a very similar cheesy grin, and then to her own father who just shrugged. "Ok then, we'll come join you for a game or two."
"Yes!" exclaimed Rick with a fist pump. "Told you it would work," he said teasingly towards Alexis.
Rick led them over to the table they were previously sitting at where the hungry hippos game was waiting.
Alexis sat first and started fiddling with the game putting all the pieces on the game. Just before they sat Kate turned to Rick, "You know, you look a little familiar. Do I know you?"
"Uh… no. I don't think so. I mean, I don't know you, and you don't look like someone who would be easy to forget. So no, I don't think you would know me."
Kate blushed a little at the compliment and then took a seat next to her father.
Once all the pieces were arranged and everyone was ready, Alexis turned to her father. "Now, dad, behave yourself this time. I don't want to have to crawl around the floor picking up pieces again."
"Okay, okay. I'll behave," he said.
Alexis counted them in and they all started hitting their hippos. Kate couldn't remember the last time she'd had so much fun. She'd forgotten how it felt to be like a young girl again and a part of her was glad that Rick had convinced them to join in their game. She looked over at her father and even he was smiling and enjoying himself. She couldn't remember the last time she had seen him so happy.
They continued playing a few games and Rick was carefully watching each of the others at the table. To look at them you wouldn't think that they barely knew each other, and that they'd only met five minutes ago. They were all laughing and having a great time together. He loved his time with Alexis and the last 6 weeks had been difficult with restricted visit times, so he'd been very careful to keep the time to just them, but now he was thinking that he should have come out to the open area sooner.
He looked over at Kate and couldn't find the words to describe how stunning she looked. He wasn't sure why she was there, he hadn't seen her around before, so he guessed she was visiting her father. He could also see that there was something behind her smile though, something behind the laughter. She was hiding something. The way her father looked at her was only further proof that there was more to her story. Jim looked at her with a smile that made Rick believe she hadn't appeared to be that happy in a while. It was obvious that times were hard for her with her father in the facility but she was doing the best she could.
Then there was Jim. He looked like a simple man, but a strong man. He wasn't sure why he was here, how long he'd been here or how long he had to stay, but he was drawn to this man and his daughter, and he wanted to find out more about them. He decided at that moment, that it was time to make a friend in this place. He hadn't made any in the 6 weeks he'd been there, because he was afraid that somehow they'd find out his real identity, and his whereabouts would be made known to the media. That was the last thing his daughter needed right now, news and rumours about her father being in rehab.
After a few games, Rick looked over to see his mother walking through the door so he waved her over.
"Hello Richard, how are you?"
"I'm good mother," he stood up and kissed her cheek.
"I see you're finally making some friends," Martha said pointedly looking towards Jim and Kate.
"Yeah, well Alexis was making friends. This is Jim and Kate."
Martha smiled at them both and shook their hands.
"Right kiddo," she said to Alexis. "Are you ready? It's time to go home."
"Dad, why can't you come with us?"
"Pumpkin," he wrapped her in a hug. "I would love to but I need to stay a little longer. I'll be home soon, okay. We talked about this remember, We just have to make sure I'm not sick anymore."
"I know. But, I miss you."
"I miss you too. When I come home, we'll go away and we'll have tons of time together okay."
"Okay," she kissed her dad on the cheek and then turned to face Kate and Jim. "Will we see you again next week?"
Rick put his hand on his daughters shoulder. "Alexis, I think Jim and Kate might want to spend some time on their own again next week."
Kate crouched down in front of the young girl so she could see her face. "You know what Alexis, I think we can arrange something. I had fun today, I would love to join you guys for another game next week." She looked up towards Rick to make sure it was alright.
Rick smiled and nodded. It wasn't the same smile he had before, it was a smile of gratitude. He couldn't believe that this almost stranger could be so kind to his daughter that she barely knew. Right then, he knew, she was an amazing woman, and he wanted to get to spend more time with her. Kate quickly spoke to Martha to make sure she and Alexis would both be at the centre at the same time again next week, then they all said their goodbyes.
"Well, I should leave you to it. I'm sorry if we intruded on your time, but thank you for helping make my little girl happy."
"It's our pleasure," Jim said with a smile. "She's gorgeous."
"Yeah, she is," Rick said with a smile. "Well, I'll talk to you later, and Kate, I'll see you next week I guess."
Rick walked over to another empty table and sat down by himself. He looked over and watched Jim and Kate as they once again were engaged in a private conversation. Why had he kept himself shut away in his room for the past 6 weeks? If he had realised there were people this nice, this beautiful, this amazing out here, he would have come out the first week here.
So there is chapter one. Rick is in rehab. If you want to know why, you'll have to wait and see. Let me know what you think.
I've got the story planned out, have written a few chapters and I've been enjoying writing it so much that I just couldn't wait to start posting it up, so I figured I might as well just start putting it up. Hopefully I'll be able to keep writing quickly and update regularly.
Anyways, that all. And again, reviews are great! :)