Word Count: 1,149
Characters/Pairings: Rick Castle, Kate Beckett, Castle/Beckett
Spoilers: Up to Countdown.
Disclaimer: I don't own Castle and never will. No copyright infringement intended.
Summary: After their near death experience, Castle doesn't want to waste anymore time. He decides to tell Kate how he feels.
After his near death experience with the bomb (and the freezer. Can never forget the freezer.), Richard Castle couldn’t fall asleep. No matter what he did, the author couldn’t stop going over the events of the past few days. Rick was thrilled that New York and its citizens had been saved.
His thoughts kept returning to his partner. Rick was completely in love with Kate Beckett. He wanted to tell her, but Josh was back. Beckett was happy with him. He had no right to interfere in her relationship.
But, they both had nearly died – multiple times – just this week. Rick didn’t want to be without her anymore. Kate was the love of his life. He had to tell her now. He jumped out of bed and hurriedly got dressed. Then, he rushed to his car.
While driving to her apartment, Rick tried to come up with ways to woo Kate. He could do this without panicking. Maybe. If he was lucky, maybe she’d even feel the same way about him that he felt about her.
When he knocked on the door, Rick had a sudden moment of panic. What if he screwed up their friendship? He didn’t want to do that. It was too late, though, since Kate opened the door.
“Castle, what are you doing here?” Kate had been unable to sleep herself, and had no idea why her partner would be here at 2:00 in the morning.
Castle tried to say something. He opened his mouth, but no words came out. “Uh…”
“Is something wrong? Are you okay? Is it Alexis? Your mother? Tell me so I can fix it,” Kate pleaded.
“It’s okay. We’re all okay. There’s nothing wrong. I know you’re with Josh, but we both nearly died. And I need to tell you something, Kate. Something really important.”
Kate had a feeling about where this was going, and she couldn’t help but smile. “Castle, I broke up with Josh tonight. I realized that I didn’t want to be with him. So tell me whatever it is you want to tell me.”
“You broke up with Josh?” Castle didn’t know why that news had thrown him like this. Beckett had seemed really happy with her boyfriend. Well, ex-boyfriend now.
“Yes, I did. Now, what were you going to tell me?”
Castle took a deep breath and tried to prepare himself for the leap he was about to take. “I’m in love with you, Kate. Always have been, always will. And I don’t want to lose you. Do you realize how many times we nearly died in the past few weeks? I’m not about to let life pass me by without telling you how I feel. Life’s too short for regrets, and I don’t want you to be a regret.”
Kate grinned at him. “You love me?”
“I love you,” Castle confirmed. He grinned back, waiting for an answer.
“I love you, too, Rick.” She couldn’t believe she had finally said the words. She had nearly told him when they almost froze to death in the freezer, but the detective had passed out before she could.
“Really?” Castle was in shock a little bit. He had hoped she would feel the same way, but he hadn’t expected her to.
“Really. So are you just going to stand there or are you going to come over here and kiss me?”
“I’m going to kiss you.” Rick bolted over to Kate’s side and began kissing her. The two stayed that way for a few minutes.
“That was better than the time we made out to fool those criminals a few weeks ago.”
“I’m happy about that. So, what are we supposed to do next?” Castle really wasn’t sure. He hadn’t expected to make it this far into the conversation, and thus, he hadn’t planned ahead.
Kate laughed. “Well, no sex yet. Sorry. I want to wait. Take this relationship slow.” She didn’t want to ruin their friendship or relationship.
Castle groaned. “Fine,” he agreed. He leaned over and kissed her again.
“I can definitely get used to this.” She couldn’t believe Castle felt the same way about her. She was secretly glad for their near death experiences this week.
“Me too. You want to watch a movie or something?” Castle didn’t feel like going all the way home now. Watching a movie seemed like a great plan.
“Sure. But I got to do something. Be right back.” Kate rushed into her bedroom and changed out of her pajamas. Even though she and Castle weren’t going to have sex, she still wanted to look good.
By the time Kate returned, Castle had a movie in the DVD player on pause. “What’d you put in?”
“You’ll see.” Castle beamed at her. He wanted to surprise Beckett with his movie choice. It seemed like it might be fun.
“Tell me what it is!” Kate sat down on the couch and pushed her boyfriend (Boyfriend? Oh God, that was a terrifying thought. She was dating her best friend and someone who happened to be her favorite author!) over so she could have a little bit of room.
“Hey!” Castle didn’t mind being pushed over, though. He was with the woman he loved now. Nothing else really mattered right now.
“You’ll get used to it.” Kate leaned her head against Castle’s shoulder as he started the movie. The new couple settled in to watch it.
“I love you,” Castle whispered to her a few minutes later, as Kate’s eyes started to close.
“Love you, too.” And that was the last thing Kate remembered before she fell asleep.
When she woke up in the morning, the DVD player’s screensaver was on and Castle was asleep himself. Kate beamed at him and then got up to get something to eat. “Castle, wake up. I have to go to work.”
Castle startled awake. “Why? Can’t we both just stay home and have fun? We did just save New York, after all.”
“Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way. Come on. We may even have a case by the end of the day.” Kate tried to hold back a smile. She hadn’t been this happy in a long time. Rick Castle helped her feel this way.
“Alright. I’m up now.” Castle stood up and stretched a little bit. He leaned over and kissed her again.
“I’m never going to get tired of that.”
“Me neither. Love you. I’ll see you later.” Castle kissed her again before turning to go.
“I love you, too.” Kate felt a little thrill every time she said those words to him. It was nice to finally have her feelings out in the open.
Because a terrorist had nearly destroyed New York City, Kate Beckett and Richard Castle had finally admitted their feelings for each other.
They would forever be grateful for the wake-up call that led to their relationship becoming a reality.