For the First Time in Forever
AUTHOR'S NOTE: Song by Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez. From Frozen.
She hadn't been like this before - before him. Richard Castle. The best-selling author, her favourite crime/mystery novelist. All changed when he started working with - shadowing - her. He annoyed her all the time. Sometimes it's all good, sometimes she just wanted to shoot him. Or strangle him.
He never felt like this in a very long time, not since Kyra. He thought then that she'd be the one. But things didn't work out. He met Meredith, got married, and had Alexis. It didn't work out either because she was more focused on her acting. He met Gina sometime after, got married, but they didn't get along well, especially she was also his publisher. He then flirted with other women using his status as best-selling author and was deemed a playboy. Until he met Kate Beckett.
She told him about her mother's murder, a few weeks into their partnership, of why she wears her wedding ring, and why she wears her father's watch: "For the life she lost and the life she saved." She knew he could use it for the books he is basing on her but for once she felt like she didn't care. She knew he overstepped when he investigated Johanna's murder behind her back but soon she wanted him there, wanted him to solve her mother's murder with him.
He thought he was done for when he finally told her the truth about about Johanna Beckett's case, about what he found our. But she accepted him back. After the Dick Coonan incident in which she shot her mother's killer, she told him she wanted him there, wanted him to be there when she solved the case. He knew it was difficult for her because Coonan could have told her who hired him to kill Johanna. But she made a choice.
She knew that they haven't known each other for long and that whatever information she told him he could use in his Nikki Heat series. But Kate realised that he's the only one she wanted to tell everything to. She didn't want to conceal anymore.
He felt that he has told her more than he told either Meredith or Gina. She is a detective after all and she has a way to coax something out of him. But he willingly told her. He also let Alexis in her life; he didn't hide his daughter from her. Rick didn't want to feel, what is a good word for it, burdened anymore.
After four years, during that fateful rainy night, when every of their puzzle pieces fitted together, for the first time in forever, they let go.
"What, Castle?" Beckett asked her partner, who she felt was staring at her.
"Nothing," was the response.
Beckett turned around and found him typing on his laptop. They were in his office and Kate was looking for a book to read.
"So you're not staring at my ass a minute ago?" she asked again.
"Well," Castle stammered. "I was just…just…"
"Looking for inspiration so I am looking at my muse," he reasoned.
Beckett nodded, amused, and returned to searching for a book. She was in the process of getting a title a few minutes later that she hadn't realised that Castle had stood up. She gasped when she felt his arms wrap around her waist.
"Hey," he whispered in her ear.
"Hi," she whispered back. "What's the matter?"
"Nothing. I just wanted to hug my girl."
Beckett smiled and snuggled closer to Rick.
"I also want to thank you," he continued.
"For being my muse," he replied. "My muse, my inspiration, my life."
Beckett turned around and looked at him.
"Thank you, too," she said. "For being there. For..."
She paused, searching for a word that would fit.
"For?" Castle prodded, raising an eyebrow.
"For saving me," Kate answered. "Because I kinda needed it. If it weren't for you, I probably wouldn't be here right now."
Castle smiled at her and hugged her tight, which she returned.
"Rick," she whispered. "Do you remember that song from Frozen?"
"Which one?" he asked. "The one Adele Dazeem sang? Idina Menzel." He said after she gave him a look.
"The one Anna sang, in the beginning," she said.
"For the First Time in Forever," they exclaimed in total synchronicity. They smiled at each other. They just do that every time, say something at the same time.
"Yes," Rick said. "What about it?"
"I felt like Anna when I met you. I just felt…," she paused. "Free. Even when you opened my mother's case. I just felt free."
Castle kissed her forehead and whispered, "Me too."
They heard a cry in their bedroom.
"And little Thomas needs his mummy," Rick sighed.
Kate chuckled and gave her husband a kiss on the lips.
"My boys." She winked at him as she sauntered off to the next room.
Castle's cup runneth over.