Castle Halloween FanFic Competition: Macabre Mastication

Another story for out fanfic competition. Here you can find all the stories for the 12th Precinct Castle Halloween FanFic Competition. And here you can find the rules.
You can also find the stories at for a possible easier read.

Story: Macabre Mastication
Rating: T
Word count: 1499

They spoke quietly, in almost hushed whispers, their heads bent towards each other. Being discreet imperative as they steadfastly worked the case. 
Time was of the essence. 
“The scratches, whilst unusual,” Lanie stated, rounding the table, “are not my immediate concern.” Her eyes flicked up, surveying the room, not wanting to be overheard. 
“Scratches?” Ryan cocked his head squinting at the victim, trying to make out the almost indistinguishable marks as Lanie carried on talking. 
“Four fingernail scratches,” She said waggling her fingers in mid air between the two Detectives, “that run from the base of the skull,” She indicated a spot behind her ear, “Through the hairline to the Adams apple.” 
“There were scratches on the back too remember.” Ryan nodded towards Esposito, waiting for him to agree. 
“Yeah,” Esposito’s eyes left the floor, shifting uncomfortably on his feet, “but eight not four, all the way down his back.” 
“A two handed assault.” Lanie drew in a shallow breath as she considered the evidence in front of her. “Quite forceful by the look of it.” 
“But not drawing blood?” Ryan shuddered, his head swimming with images of claws and sharp rusty knives, implements or torture wielded by psychos, getting into the spirit of Halloween a bit too much. 
At least there were no dolls involved this time. 
“No. I would say more frantic than vicious.” 
“Like an animal.” Ryan whispered, almost to himself but not quite. When he glanced up and saw the look on his partners face, half pity half shame, he cleared his throat. “So what do the bite marks tell you Dr. Parish?” Ryan asked leaning against the table and folding his arms, trying to keep still when another shudder threatened. 
“Well initially they were hard to make out.” She grinned, ever confident in her own abilities, “But, if you look at the collar of the shirt,” She fingered an area just under her own chin, “you can see the distinct trace of concealer.” 
“Meaning the marks were covered?” Espo shifted again, unable to stay still, it’s distracting and annoying, and drawing attention that they do not need. 
Lanie gave a short sharp nod and rushed on, “Badly hidden, they also tell me that our victim didn’t put up much of a fight.” The M.E sighed and set down her cup, “ Subdued or... I don't even know what, but the bites themselves worry me just a bit.” 
The two men looked up in unison, eyes bright and full of concern. 
“The circular pattern over the jaw would seem to indicate he was -” 
“Attacked?” Esposito asked stepping in closer. 
“Savaged?” Ryan suggested. 
“More like ravaged.” Lanie drew out the word, added a snap of her teeth to the end, biting at the last retreating syllable like the assailant bit at the victim. 
Hard. Hungry. Feral! 
Ryan shuddered again and they both ignored him, turning instead to stare even more intently at their victim. “There is a bruise to the left of the carotid artery, another at the jugular, teeth marks in both areas and more bruises that would lead me to believe.” She glanced up at both men, swallowed thickly and took a deep breath. 
“Just say it Lanie.” Ryan begged, pulling his cape more firmly around him. Flimsy protection. 
“I would say he was scratched, bitten and then sucked.” 
“Sucked?” Esposito barked, hoisting his fishnets higher and shuffling from foot to foot. 
“Like by a…a vampire?” 
“Well it is Halloween.” Lanie rolled her eyes, adjusted the leather gloves. She stood straighter and ignored the flash of fire through Javi’s eyes when her movement made the latex bodice squeak. 
“Sounds more like a beast to me.” He said darkly, his eyes on Lanie. 
“A wild demon.” Ryan said in a hushed tone, as if afraid the creature could hear him. 
“Hey now.” Lanie said waving a hand, “You watch your mouth and Javier will you stop leaning on me.” 
“It’s the shoes,” He wiggled, and groaned, “I don't know how Beckett runs in these, I can barely stand.” 
“She has magical powers.” Castle grinned, suddenly appearing holding out a tray of drinks. The sharp black bat ears of his mask sticking up comically either side of his head. 
“Yeah, that or years of practice, what were you guys doing?” Kate said twisting majestically into Castle’s side in a brown leather skirt and beaded bodice, something that looked like a dragon tucked under her arm. She turned, smiled and stole a drink, eyes lingering over the writer, catching the inhale of breath as he finally got a proper look at her costume. 
“Beckett, I’m impressed.” He nodded his approval, licking his lips, the world forgotten, “You actually took my advice.” He poked at the creature under her arm, grinning far too widely. 
“And, typically, you ignored mine completely.” She reached up and flicked hard at one of the ears above his own. The sharp snap of black leather under her fingertips making them both jump and Kate swallowed, stepping back. 
The other three glanced at each other. Lanie averted her eyes and adjusted the red latex mask that covered her face, seriously? 
They thought they were covert? Please. 
“So,” Kate turned back to the group, swigging her drink, “You three?” 
“Just working a case.” Ryan mumbled quickly, pulling his cape tighter, swirling it loosely. 
“Narrowing down our suspects.” Esposito agreed, his eyes scrunched shut, tugging on his restrictive corset. 
“I didn't know you caught a case.” Kate said, leaning into Castle’s side unintentionally, not touching, but close enough. 
Oh they caught a case alright. 
Three sets of eyes met, decision made in a split second. Now or never 
“Old case, we thought it had gone cold.” Espo looked Kate over, eyes wide and he tried not to grin, “But new evidence has come to light.” 
“Oh?” Castle bent forwards, bowing over the tray with exaggeration, “Anything we might have heard of?” 
“You're probably familiar with it.” Ryan reached for the tray, squinting into the blood red cocktail, before he lifted it gingerly to his lips. He caught the look that passed between writer and muse, the silent conversation 
Do you know? 
No idea. 
All spoken with nothing more than the scrunch of their eyes, the pout of their lips and followed by Kate’s gentle shrug, the lift of her chin. 
“What case?” 
“What new evidence?” 
They spoke together, heads turning appraising each other once again, soft smiles and lingering looks. Castle’s fingers drift to the mark she had made on his neck in the breakroom and Kate dipped her head, letting her hair fall to cover her cheeks and the rising blush, because she had gotten carried away - 
And loud. 
And now here they stood, partnering each other in sentence completion. She grinned, he grinned back. 
And Lanie rolled her eyes, enough was enough and seriously, who the hell did they think they were fooling? 
Months of we know but they don't know we know, they suspect we know but we pretend we don't and oh look Castle’s shirt is inside out and Kate has another hickie. 
It was ridiculous. 
And enough was way more than enough. 
“We were wondering about the marks on Castle’s body.” Lanie stated bluntly watching as Kate choked on her drink and Castle just managed to maintain his grip on the tray in his hand. The glasses clinked and wobbled and he let them thud down on the table. 
“The,” Kate swallowed, “Marks?” 
“The scratches.” Ryan added, hands falling to his hips as his cape rippled around him. 
“The bruises,” Espo held out his arms, finally finding his balance in the heels before he looked up at Castle, “Bro you let her suck on your neck? Ew.” 
Kate’s dragon fell from her fingers, her hand curled around Castle’s forearm. Was the room spinning? It felt like it was spinning. 
“I don't know what...” 
Lanie held up her hand, “No excuses.” 
“No details.” Ryan blurted, superhero persona falling away replaced by repulsed detective. 
“No more going at it in the break room.” 
Kate gasped. 
“Or in the gym.” 
Lanie growled ferociously, “Or my morgue.” 
“And there are cameras in the elevator...just F.Y.I,” Esposito smirked. 
Castle jumped, “I...we...” 
Lanie rolled her eyes again, cutting him off, “Shut up Castle, we know. So...” She waved her hand between the two of them, mirror images of fear and worry but relief, maybe, just a bit. “Enough with the charade. It’s fooling no one. We’re your friends and we understand the need for secrecy.” 
“Plus we don't wanna know.” Espo piped up. 
“Or hear or see...again.” Ryan shuddered. 
Stunned silence filtered between the five of them until it was broken by a happy sigh. 
“But one piece of advice, if you’re gonna bite him, either do it where it doesn't show or buy him some decent concealer.” Lanie smirked over her shoulder at the gaping pair, before she walked off, having finally put to rest. “The Case of the Hungry Detective.” 
Captain Founder, Administrator, Editor and Writer

The moment that I met you, my life became extraordinary. You taught me to be my best self, to look forward to tomorrow's adventures. And when I was vulnerable, you were strong. I love you, Richard Castle. And I want to live my life in the warmth of your smile and the strength of your embrace. I promise you I will love you. I will be your friend and your partner in crime and in life, always. - Kate Beckett The moment we met, my life became extraordinary. You taught me more about myself than I knew there was to learn. You are the joy in my heart. You're the last person I want to see every night when I close my eyes. I love you, Katherine Beckett. And the mystery of you is the one I want to spend the rest of my life exploring. I promise to love you, to be your friend, and your partner in crime and life, 'till death do us part, and for the time of our lives. - Richard Castle

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