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01 February 2010 @ 08:29 pm
Saying Goodbye  
Title: Saying Goodbye
Author: hazel_eyes_86
Beta: digitaldesigner
Pairing: Castle/Beckett
Rating: PG-13
Summary: How did things get so broken? Prequel to Leaving a Part of Yourself Behind. AU for When the Bough Breaks
Disclaimer: If it looks or sounds like something from Castle, I don't own it.
Spoilers: When the Bough Breaks
A/N: I never really intended to write this part of the story, even though I had almost all of these scenes in mind when I was writing Leaving a Part... However, while working on the sequel to said fic, my word processor opened a blank document and told me to write this. It really is quite bossy sometimes.


Beckett and Castle walked down the stairs from the Talbot residence in silence, both knowing that this was it. One of them was going to have to say something. Beckett took a deep breath. He had just helped her; she couldn't let them part on the same note that they had at the party.

"Thank you, Castle. I uh... I never would have been able to solve this case without your help." She didn't know whether to be pleased or sad that she'd caused him to look that shocked. "Well, good luck... on your new book." She forced a smile onto her face. "I know that you'll do it proud."

"Thanks," Castle said softly.

They both just stood there, more awkward than teens on their first date. Why was it so hard to know what to say to him?

Finally he held out a hand for her to shake. She stared at it, trying not to feel disappointed, before clasping their hands together. "You take care of yourself." She met his gaze and watched him struggle for words. "And... if you ever need..."

She nodded. She knew she should walk away now. There was a voice in the back of her head screaming at her to let go of Castle's hand, say goodbye, and walk out of here with her dignity intact. But she couldn't quite make her body do just that as she continued to stare into his eyes, and felt him unconsciously begin to stroke the back of her hand with his thumb.

She couldn't be sure which one of them moved first. All she knew was that she found her arms wrapped around his neck, while his went instinctively to her waist. The kiss started out desperate, simultaneously filled with desire and denial. But then they pulled apart. Beckett slowly allowed her eyes to reopen and found him staring intently at her. What she saw there made her knees tremble more than the kiss had. Since when did her knees tremble? She barely had time to ponder that before his head dipped down towards hers again. This kiss had all of the same elements as the first one, but they were buried under something else that Beckett couldn't seem to process.

There wasn't much time to investigate what it was though because her phone started ringing incessantly. If she were anyone else, with any other job, she probably would have ignored it. Instead she backed away from Castle as gracefully as she could manage and pulled out the phone.

"Beckett."

"We've got a body," Esposito's voice told her.

She listened as he gave her the address of the site and told him she'd be right there. Fortifying herself, she turned back to Castle, who was looking at her expectantly. "That was Esposito. There's been a murder."

"Beckett..." Castle started but she couldn't let him finish.

"Goodbye, Castle."

And she walked out with as much of her dignity intact as possible.

***

Alexis had watched her dad sulk the entire night and she was done with it. "Dad, can I ask you a question?"

He didn't look at her from his position on the couch. "Sure, sweetie."

"You haven't signed the contract yet to write the James Bond books."

"That's not a question."

She resisted the urge to roll her eyes. He was in pain after all. "So, why don't you just tell them no? You obviously are going to miss... Nikki Heat."

The hesitation, the stiffening of his muscles, was very subtle, but Alexis saw it. "I'm done with Nikki Heat."

There was something defeated in his voice when he said it that led Alexis to believe that that wasn't entirely his choice. She walked over to him and, not knowing what to say, placed a kiss on his forehead. "I think we have ice cream."

***

She should have left it at them being mad at each other, Beckett decided, as she got her third refill of coffee in the last couple hours. The case Esposito had called her in for was over pretty much as soon as it began, which had left her with more time than she was comfortable with to consider this afternoon's events.

What was wrong with her? She'd been trying to get rid of Castle since he'd first volunteered to help on the copycat killings. And now she was... what? Disappointed, angry... lonely?

Slamming down her cup with more force than she meant to, she walked out of the precinct.

***

"We're going to need some more whipped cream," Alexis decided as she sprayed the last of it onto their sundaes. She'd just placed his in front of him when the doorbell rang.

"You think your grandmother forgot her key again?" Shrugging, Alexis dug into her ice cream, not paying much attention until she heard her dad's surprised, "Beckett?"

Not even bothering to come up with an excuse for why she had the sudden need to go to her room, she merely winked at her dad, waved to Beckett, and ran up the stairs.

***

Castle stepped aside to let Beckett walk in. He had gone from stunned to confused in very little time. "What are you doing here?"

She held up an object, which he immediately recognized, as if it were a backstage pass. "You forgot your sunglasses."

He couldn't help the laugh burst out of him and soon she had joined him, chuckling and shaking her head.

Taking them from her hand, he made sure his fingers brushed hers. Their eyes locked. "That is the lamest excuse I have ever..."

"Yeah, yeah, yeah." She grabbed the lapel of his jacket and pulled him to her.

Neither of them spoke again for awhile.

***

A phone was ringing. Beckett's hand stretched out towards the sound, without lifting her head from her pillow.

"I think that's mine," Castle's sleepy voice rumbled from her left. Still not opening her eyes, she passed the offending object over to him. She felt more than heard his chuckle before he sprinkled light kisses across her shoulder. "I'll be right back. You want breakfast?"

"Mmmm."

"Hey, Paula."

"Rick, why the hell haven't you called me back?" Paula's voice boomed out of Castle's cell, which either meant Castle was going deaf and need the volume up absurdly high or that Paula was using a bullhorn for this conversation. Both seemed unlikely, but the second didn't sound like a bad way to make sure he was listening to you. "Is this still about your real-life Nikki Heat?" Okay, so she was awake now.

"Paula..."

"No. I'm serious, Rick. You can't afford to have your head turned around like this. Sleep with her so you've gotten her out of your system."

"I did; a couple times actually," he joked and it took everything in her not to pull her gun on him.

"Then what the..."

She couldn't hear anymore of their conversation, and she realized that he must have finally made it far enough down the hall.

God, she needed to get out of here.

***

Castle rummaged through his refrigerator, only half listening to Paula. They had to have more than eggs and toast for a breakfast selection. Maybe he would just take Beckett out... though he wasn't sure he was ready to let her step outside of his apartment yet.

"No, I do understand that they need an answer soon, but like I said before this is a huge decision." He turned around when he heard the sound of shoes on the stairs. He was slightly alarmed to see Beckett completely dressed and pulling on her coat. "I have to call you back." He hung up before she could respond. "Do you have to go in?"

The look in her eyes did very little to calm him, even with her carefully even tone. "No, but I do have to go."

"You can't possibly be that afraid of my cooking."

She shook her head, but he didn't get the smile he was hoping for. "Honestly, Castle, you're not obligated to feed me."

"Obli--?"

"Last night was fun."

"Of course it was," he scoffed; like it would have been anything else.

She continued as if he hadn't said anything. "And it was a nice way to say goodbye."

Castle thought back over the night and early morning and tried to pinpoint exactly which part of it had been a goodbye. He couldn't think of anything.

"But I should really go now."

Well this certainly wasn't the right scene. Who did he talk to about a rewrite? They were supposed to be joking around while he fixed breakfast and they stole sappy looks at each other. Not standing on opposite sides of the room, her inching closer and closer to the door, and him scrambling trying to think what on earth had changed in the last few minutes.

"Okay, I'm confused," he finally admitted. He'd had plenty of awkward 'morning after' departures, but he usually knew why they were tense.

She'd managed to make her way to the door, and he thought he could almost see her hand twitch on the doorknob. "Let's not make this weird..."

"Oh, I think that ship has sailed."

"I have to go."

It was the matter of fact way that she said it that had him nodding before he could really think it through.

And for the second time in as many days he watched Kate Beckett walk away.


A/N 2: Okay, you guys can't be mad at me for where this ends! You knew how they started out in Leaving a Part... Put the rotten fruits and vegetables down!

A/N 3: If you want a sneak peek at the third installment in this universe, go here
 
 
Current Mood: productiveproductive
 
 
 
Aimee: Castle & Beckett - Smiledigitaldesigner on February 2nd, 2010 02:16 pm (UTC)
Put the rotten fruits and vegetables down!

What about rotten eggs? :P

Seriously, though, great job. :D
Devin: Castle/Beckett hughazel_eyes_86 on February 2nd, 2010 08:16 pm (UTC)
What about rotten eggs? :P

You know, sometimes I doubt our friendship... :P

Seriously, though, great job. :D

Thanks! :D
Aimee: Cordy - Whateverdigitaldesigner on February 2nd, 2010 08:17 pm (UTC)
You know, sometimes I doubt our friendship... :P

You do not. :P
Devin: Beckett Tongue-Tiedhazel_eyes_86 on February 2nd, 2010 08:19 pm (UTC)
Well no, but things like that should really give me pause
Aimee: Cordy - I Love Youdigitaldesigner on February 2nd, 2010 08:41 pm (UTC)
Uh huh. You know, that would sound much more convincing if I didn't share your brain. ;)
Devin: Castle/Beckett Nose Pinchhazel_eyes_86 on February 2nd, 2010 08:43 pm (UTC)
I knew I should have thought twice about letting you co-sign the lease...
Aimee: Gunn - Please Makes It Happendigitaldesigner on February 2nd, 2010 08:44 pm (UTC)
I don't recall it actually being an option. :P
Devin: Winkhazel_eyes_86 on February 2nd, 2010 08:47 pm (UTC)
oh yeah...
Melissa: Castle & Beckettmelissa_pbfan on February 2nd, 2010 04:06 pm (UTC)
I love it! ♥
Devin: Castle/Becketthazel_eyes_86 on February 2nd, 2010 08:16 pm (UTC)
Thank you! :D