Castle Christmas FanFic Competition: Presents Under The tree"

Another story for our 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: "Presents Under The Tree"
Rating:  K+
Words: 2,100

Kate, Ryan and Esposito stepped out of the lift into the bull pen, all three feeling fed up and cold. They had just been on a wild goose chase across the city, in the snow, looking for their victim’s next of kin, who, as it turned out was away for Christmas which explained why they hadn’t been able to get hold of him on his phone.

All three dropped gracelessly into theirs chairs before stripping off their coats and rubbing their hands together in an attempt to get the circulation back.

“Where’s Castle?” Ryan questioned.

Kate shrugged, “Don’t know. He’s probably at home in front of the fire nice and warm.” She wasn’t happy, he had disappeared before she had even woken up this morning and he wasn’t picking up or replying to any texts.

“Or not,” Esposito said quietly.

Kate followed his eye line and saw that Rick was coming towards them from the darkened break room with a tray of steaming mugs. As he got closer he gave Kate a wounded look before saying, “I’m hurt detective, that you could think so little of me.”

Kate laughed at him and he smiled back as he handed a mug to Ryan and then another to Esposito. They both the mugs and cupped them between their finally thawing hands. “Thanks,” Ryan said as Rick continued on towards Kate and handed her the third mug before taking the forth for himself and leaning the tray against the leg of his as he took a seat.

Kate looked at the mug in her hands and smiled at her boyfriend before taking a sip and moaning lightly as she felt the warm liquid slide down her throat. Rick smirked at her as he put his hand into his jacket pocket and pulled out a bag of marshmallows. “Anyone want marshmallows with their hot chocolate?”

Esposito and Ryan both moved their chairs closer and reached for the bag. Once they were done Rick offered the bag to Kate she put a few in her drink before eating another couple. Rick smiled and started adding them to his own mug. He stopped however when Gates came storming over and asked angrily, “What have you done to my break room Mr Castle?”

Rick put the bag on Kate’s desk before saying, “I put up a Christmas tree?” His answer sounded more like a question than anything else.

Ryan, Esposito and Kate all looked over at the now lit break room and couldn’t help but let their mouths fall open in shock. Rick had turned the break room into a winter wonderland, complete with fake snow and a fully trimmed tree which, instead of an angel or star at the top, had a little toy uniformed cop.

“Yes you did,” Gates continued, “Did you even ask for my consent before turning my break room into a joke?”

By now the whole bull pen had fallen into silence as everyone watched Gates and Rick. “No,” Rick answered, “I didn’t and I didn’t turn it into a joke either sir. We’re on the homicide floor of a police station and people come here on the worst days of their lives and they need to be reminded that there is still the possibility for joy.” He looked at Kate as he said the last part and she smiled warmly at him. “Plus,” Rick then added, “I needed a tree to put the presents under.”

The three detectives bit their lips in an attempt not to laugh at the look of shock that had appeared on Gates’ face, along with many of the other people present. Rick stood and walked towards the break room. As he got to the door he turned around and gestured for everyone to come with him. After casting a side long glance at Gates, Kate was the first to stand, quickly followed by Esposito and Ryan and, after another prompt from Rick, everyone else present. “You too Captain,” Rick called across to her.

“What are you doing Castle?” Kate hissed as she reached him.

He just shook his head and moved into the break room.

Everyone filled in after him, letting Gates through so she was close to the front. Once the room was full everyone else stood by the two doors so they could see what was going on.

Once everyone had mostly stopped moving Rick pulled on a Santa hat before moving closer to the tree, gesturing for Kate to come with him. He handed her an elf hat and asked, “Fancy being Santa’s little helper Beckett?” Everyone laughed as Kate glared at Rick for a moment before she sighed and pulled on the hat.

“How cute,” Esposito teased.

Kate glared at him but Rick smirked and pulled out two more elf hats and handed one to Ryan and the other to Esposito. “You’re helping too,” was all he said before he turned back to the tree. Kate laughed as Ryan happily put on the hat while Esposito did the same while muttering something in Spanish that Kate guessed wasn’t particularly flattering.

Rick gave Kate a smile before reaching under the tree and handing Ryan a bunch of envelopes. “There should be one for each of the uniforms.”

Ryan nodded and handed the stack of envelopes to the nearest uniform saying, “Dish those out and if anyone isn’t here can you make sure they get them?”

The uniform nodded and made his way out of the room but not before saying over his shoulder, “On behalf of all the uniforms thank you Castle, and Merry Christmas.”

Rick just waved him away and handed some parcels to Kate, Ryan and Esposito, “Names are on the top.”

The three nodded and passed the parcels to the right people. As they got rid of the ones in their hands Rick would hand them some more. Soon every detective had a present. Some got hats and gloves while others just a scarf or in some people’s cases a gift certificate for some restaurant or shop, Kate noticed that the people who had gotten gift certificates tended to be those with a family at home. Each present also contained a candy cane as well. Kate moved to stand beside Rick and said, “You didn’t have to do this Rick.”

He shrugged, “I know but I wanted to.”

After a chorus of thank yous from the other detectives they all headed back to their desks, most opening their candy canes as they went. Once the room had cleared leaving only Rick, Kate, Esposito, Ryan and Gates, Rick reached under the tree once again and pulled out two wrapped boxes. He walked over to stand in front of Gates, who had been stood in silence ever since she had entered the room. He handed her the boxes one at a time before he walked back to stand beside, and slightly behind, Kate. Gates followed him with a wary gaze before she looked down at the two boxes in her hands.

She put one on the counter behind her before slowly peeling away the paper on the one still in her hand. She pulled the paper away to reveal a box containing one of the ugly china dolls that he had smashed in her office. She looked at the box for a few moments before looking up and looking straight at Rick, “Thank you Mr Castle.”

Rick shook his head, “I broke them so I felt it was only fair that I replace them.”

Gates carefully placed the open package on the counter and picked up the still wrapped one. Once both were unwrapped and she was holding both boxes she asked, “How did you find them?”

Rick smiled, “Let’s just say finding them is not the strangest thing I have ever asked my agent to do.”

Gates nodded, gazing at the two dolls like they were now born babies. “Thank you Mr Castle,” she said again before walking to the door. As she reached it she turned and said, “Detective Beckett, you keep a tight hold on him, there aren’t many men like him.” She caught the look of shock on Kate’s face at her words and smiled, “Detective, I’ve known about the two of you since you came back, I just didn’t say anything because you kept it professional in my precinct.” She smiled again before turning and leaving, throwing a Merry Christmas over her shoulder as she went.

She left behind a silent room where the four occupants were all staring at each other in complete shock.

“Well I was not expecting that,” Ryan said, breaking the silence.

“Congrats guys,” Esposito said, “It’s official, Gates knows and hasn’t kicked Castle out.”

Rick and Kate looked at each other before Rick smiled and said in a teasing voice, “And you said she’d kick me out. A lot of worry over nothing.”

Kate punched him in the arm but before she could withdraw her fist fully he grabbed it and pulled her into a hug. She returned it happily for a few moments before Ryan cleared her throat and gestured upwards. Kate drew back slightly and the two turned their gazes heavenwards in complete sync. Esposito was holding a sprig of mistletoe over their heads, a smug smirk on his face.

Rick looked back at Kate and said, “Well it is tradition.”

She nodded before quickly capturing his lips with her own. They kept it soft and sweet and when they pulled apart they became aware of the cheers and whistles coming from the bull pen. Kate blushed but took a hold of Rick’s hand and held it.

As Ryan and Esposito fed the birds Rick reached under the tree one last time and pulled out the remaining presents. He handed on to Esposito, another to Ryan and the third one he passed to the beaming woman stood beside him, holding his hand.

They watched as Ryan and Esposito opened their parcels. Ryan opened his and an envelope fell onto the floor. He picked it up and looked questioningly at Rick. “It’s for you and Jenny, reservations at the restaurant she was talking about the last time we were all at the Old Haunt.”

“Thanks Castle, she’ll love it,” Ryan said with a smile before looking back at the box, his smile growing bigger.

Beside him Esposito had the same look on his face as he pulled away the paper. “Bro, I love you,” he said as he looked at the game in his hand. “How did you get this Castle? It hasn’t come out yet?”

Rick laughed, “I know a guy who knows a guy.”

Esposito and Ryan both held up their hands and both feed the birds with Rick, although it was one at a time since he didn’t want to let go of Kate just yet. All three men all turned their attention to Kate and the present that was still wrapped in her hand.

As she let go of Rick’s hand he said, “It’s only something small and it’s from Alexis and my mother as well. They wanted you to have something to open when you come over on Christmas day and I wanted you to have something open today.”

Kate shook her head, “You didn’t have to Castle.”

“I know but I wanted to,” he said again, giving her a huge smile.

She laughed and turned the small package in her hand over and picked at the tape. Once the wrapping was off and folded neatly on the side, Kate slowly opened the rectangular jewellery box. Inside there were two keys. One looked like a plain old apartment key and Kate guessed that it was for his loft but the other she wasn’t sure about, it was more ornate. She looked up at Rick who smiled and said, “I wanted you to have a key to my apartment so that you didn’t have to knock every time.”

She smiled at him before kissing him lightly on the lips. As she pulled back she asked, “So what’s the other one?”

He looked deep into her eyes, “It’s the key to my heart Kate. It’s yours and no one else has as much a claim to it as you, my mother and Alexis.”

Kate reached up and placed her hand on his cheek, stroking it softly with her thumb, before she captured his lips with hers.

Behind them Esposito retched while Ryan elbowed him in the ribs.

“Thank you Castle,” Kate whispered as she pulled away.

“Always,” Rick whispered back, “You’re stuck with me for good now detective.”

Agent Angie 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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