A made up version of how I would like Castle to find out how big of a fan Beckett really is.
Author's Note: I wanted to say thank you to everyone who read and reviewed The Red Tee-Shirt. I have always been very nervous about posting anything, but the encouragement and positivity I received made it much easier. Thank you, truly. Also, constructive criticism and I are best friends, so please don't hesitate. :)
I own nothing of Castle. Andrew Marlowe is a the genius behind it all.
The loft was quiet.
Kate Beckett shut the door softly behind her, wincing at the time on her watch. Castle had left her at the precinct filling out paperwork at 8:00. She had promised to be home at a decent time, but had gotten caught up and hadn't planned on staying until midnight. Beckett toed off her shoes, slipping her suit jacket off her shoulders as she walked through the apartment. She draped it over the chair by the office, noticing how her belongings now mingled with his, two lives truly molding into one.
Home. How sweet the word sounded now that it was home with Castle. She glanced down at the simple wedding band Castle had slid onto her finger just over a year ago. Their wedding had been quite the affair-she had honestly expected it marrying Richard Castle. He'd surprised her, though, knowing how much she craved privacy. They'd smiled and waved to the cameras both to and from the reception hall, but those were the only pictures that had surfaced on the internet from their wedding day. Rick Castle, a man true to his word, had promised their wedding would be about them. Now, when she caught sight of her wedding band while she filled out paperwork, or when she saw Castle's glinting in the sunlight as they walked to work discussing theory about their current case, Beckett couldn't stop the shiver of excitement that raced through her.
She walked through his office, grinning to herself as she saw his "You Should Be Writing" screensaver rolling across the screen of his laptop. She wondered if Castle had come home and spent some time with the fictional version of Kate Beckett. Her alter ego Nikki Heat still had a long way to go, according to Castle. She bit her bottom lip (her tell, according to Castle) as she thought about him saying that Nikki still surprised him, as did Kate. Beckett often found their conversations woven into the pages of his novels, her words and logic fusing into his brain despite Castle's insistence that her logic had no place in his world.
Beckett paused at the door, watching him sleep. Richard Castle was handsome, no doubt about it. He was partially covered by the blankets, his broad back begging for her attention. She thought about running her hands through his soft hair, her lips nipping and smoothing over his chest. Watching him, she thought about the first time they had been together at the loft, when it had been nerves and passion ruling their lovemaking. Now, as she watched him sleep, she thought about the confidence he had brought out in her. Kate Beckett let love and partnership and trust rule her relationship with Rick now.
Still, at times, Kate felt some of her old insecurities creep back up. She never understood how she could face down some of New York's toughest criminals, yet couldn't accept that Castle would want to be with someone like her. She felt unworthy.
"Whatever you're thinking, stop."
His voice brought an immediate smile to her face. Castle rolled over and propped up on his elbows, eying her across the dimly lit bedroom. Kate walked slowly to his side of the bed, dipping her head and kissing him gently.
"I'm sorry I'm so late."
"I can think of several ways you can make it up to me."
Castle quickly found her waist, hauling her into the bed and holding her close, her body draped across his. She breathed in his scent-his intoxicating shampoo and the scent that was uniquely Castle's. He pressed his lips to her ear and whispered
"I missed you. How was paperwork?"
"Not nearly as much fun as being here with you; you could stay sometime, help out."
He scoffed in her ear and Beckett rolled her eyes. One thing hadn't changed since their marriage, Castle still hated doing paperwork. She snuggled down into him, momentarily forgetting about getting changed, her thoughts focused solely on the man holding her.
She felt her engagement ring pressed between their bodies. Beckett thought back to the night before their wedding, when she had asked Castle what he thought about her wearing it. Castle had actually admitted he wanted her to wear it on the chain around her neck. He knew she worried about something happening to it while on the job, and that way she could keep it with her every day. He also liked the idea of it being next to her mother's ring near her heart. He had said that it was a symbol of how far they had come-from the ring that had built up her walls, to the ring that had finally torn them all down. Beckett finally shifted in his arms, grinning as he groaned when she moved. She pressed a quick kiss to his temple, saying softly
"Keep the bed warm. I'll be right back."
She quickly slid off the rest of her work clothes, leaving them in a heap on the floor with his. After brushing her teeth quickly, Kate Beckett scurried back across the room. She slid under the covers, automatically reaching for Rick's arm to throw over her stomach. He obliged, rolling over and snuggling up behind her. His breath whispered across her neck, his lips pressing feather light kisses to her exposed skin.
She sighed contentedly as she removed her watch and laid it next to her completely worn out copy of Heat Wave. Castle had made fun of her when she had first brought it over, but she saw the raw emotion in his eyes that showed how much he appreciated it. She read it frequently-it was her favorite of the Nikki Heat novels. Most of the time she read when Castle was out-she didn't need to inflate his ego anymore. Still, sometimes he caught her with it and teased her. Beckett would promptly say that she was making notes of everything he had gotten wrong about Nikki. The conversation would usually end when he kissed her, pulling the book of her hands and saying he could show her exactly what page 105 looked like in person.
He was adding more pressure with his mouth the back of her neck, determined to get her attention. Beckett, however, had other things on her mind. She glanced again at her copy of Heat Wave.
"Hey Castle. Remember the first time we worked with the FBI? With Will?"
Castle hummed against her skin, letting her know he was listening and following along. His hands roamed over her skin, distracting her momentarily. Kate let herself be drawn in by his fingers. She took a deep breath, trying to get her thoughts back on track. "Well. When you were about to do the backpack drop, he and I were talking. About you, because apparently everyone else knew long before we did that there was something there."
She felt his grin against her skin, but again he remained quiet. Castle knew her, better than anyone. He knew when to give Kate the time to speak, let her get all of her thoughts out. As her partner, her lover, her husband, her best friend, Rick Castle just knew her. She grabbed his hand that was spanning over her flat stomach, lacing her fingers through his. Not breaking contact, Kate rolled over. Beckett met his eyes, a soft blue that seemed to penetrate to her soul. Castle looked happy. It thrilled her to know she put that happiness in him, and hoped he could see it reflected back at him, every day in her. She pressed kisses to his cheeks, chest, shoulders-everywhere. Beckett finally breathed against his ear
"I never told you, but we'd actually met before. I came to a book signing for In a Hail of Bullets. I'd just lost my mom, and I found a copy of that book in her bookshelf as I packed up her belongings. I read that in about three days. When I saw you were doing a book signing, I knew I had to go. I stood in line for an hour, just to get it signed. That's what Will and I were talking about in the car. He wondered if I had told you."
She saw the surprise cross his face, even in the softly lit room. Castle's hand tightened on her back, pulling her flush against him. She framed his face with her hands, saying truthfully
"You saved my life long before our first case together, Rick. Your books got me through it. You helped me see the light at the end of the tunnel of grief. I know I lost myself in her case…" she trailed off, but Rick's calm voice brought her back. "Kate. I love you."
She kissed him then, words failing her. She needed Castle to see how much she loved him, how coming home to him was the best part of her day. Kate Beckett needed Richard Castle to see how much he saved her, every day. When the need for air became too great, Beckett pulled back and said softly
"We're here because of you, Rick. Our life, our job, our future…it's because of you."
As she trailed off, Rick pressed his palm to her stomach. She thought about the baby that had just begun to flutter against her, growing stronger every day within her. Beckett thought about Castle's excitement when they found out she was pregnant. He'd been supportive of her desire to keep working; he'd held her hair as the morning sickness assaulted her at irregular times. Castle had cried the first time he felt the baby move. He loved her, and their future, as much as she did. Kate kissed him again, covering his body with hers.
"Thank you. For saving me."