Stopping behind her he peered over her shoulder and couldn't stop the grin growing on his face. Cradled in her hand, face turned up and huge yellow-green eyes staring back at hazel-green ones was a tabby kitten, no more than four or five weeks old. As soon as Castle's large form appeared over Beckett's shoulder, the pint-sized kitten turned to look up at him, flattened its ears, crouched down even further into Kate's hand and emitted a hiss much too loud for its size.
Beckett chuckled as she stroked its back "That's it little one, you tell him who's boss!"
Castle tried to keep a straight face as he said "Oh! That is sooo Beckett!"
Kate's startled face peered round at him, eyebrows raised "And just what is that supposed to mean?"
"Well it's so like you when I first got to know you, spitting at anything or anyone who came near you!"
"I did not!" she retorted, then seeing his quizzical look, shrugged, "Ok, maybe a bit …" before a smile spread across her face and she turned back to the kitten "Well little one, I've lost my ability to spit at Rick, so you're going to have to do it for the two of us!"
The kitten meanwhile, obviously feeling safe in Kate's hands and realising that Castle wasn't such a threat after all had its ears back up and was purring away as Kate scratched behind it's ears.
Castle, scrunching down next to her let his finger run along Kate's thigh before bringing it up under the kitten's chin and stroking just below its jaw. He had to grin at both the shiver that ran through his muse and the contented purr and stretching neck of the kitten.
"Magic fingers" he whispered lewdly which earned him a thump from her elbow and a stern look from the kitten on having the 'magic finger' momentarily pulled away. "Oh! I am so in trouble!"
Kate raised her hand until the kitten was level with their faces, its back legs hanging either side of her hand whilst it gripped her wrist tightly with its front paws. "Well, little one, and what are we going to do with you?" The answer was a cute meow and a pushing back of its head against the fingers she was still running from ears to back. She then cradled it against her chin and turned both their faces to stare at Castle.
One look at the two sets of eyes and Kate's pouting look and he threw his hands in the air "Ok, ok, but how are you going to get through today with him ... her ... it?"
"Oh that's no problem ..." she grinned, "... possible witness to the crime!"
"Yeah! And Gates is really going to fall for that one!"
Kate shrugged, pushed herself up with a hand on Castle's knee and tucked the kitten into her arm. Castle also stood, looking down at the tiny ball of fur that was contentedly purring in the crook of her arm, eyes tightly closed and paws kneading on the material of her coat. He shook his head and smiled at them both.
"Come on Castle! There's a crime scene to investigate!"
With a gasp and his mouth opening and closing like a guppy, Rick watched his muse stride away down the alley. It took him a couple of seconds for his brain to engage gear before letting out a grunt and hurrying to catch her up.
The alley ended at a blank, graffiti covered wall with a rubbish container pushed against it, a broken bottle and a couple of crushed cans in the corner. They stood there for a moment, looking around before retracing their steps to where Perlmutter was overseeing the bagging of the body whilst CSU carefully went through the boxes and crates for any evidence.