Castle Christmas FanFic Competition: Firsts

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 (blogspot doesn`t agree with word format most of the time).

Story: "Firsts" 
Rating:  K+
Words:  1,266

At this moment, Kate Beckett should be drinking eggnog and/or hot chocolate and/or wassail, stuffing herself silly with cookies, and opening presents with her boyfriend and his family.

Instead, she was sitting at her desk at work combing through phone records. For the third time. On Christmas Eve. She sighed and ran a hand through her hair, scraping it back from her face. It didn’t make any sense; there should be something weird in here. At least three of their victim’s co-workers had mentioned that for the last few weeks she’d been taking calls that would cause her to run off and talk in private. But all of the numbers were ones that she’d received calls from for months. So now they had to run down her entire incoming call list and bring those people in for questioning. Why couldn’t this one be easy? Why couldn’t it just be the boyfriend? (Who had already alibied out.) Even better, why couldn’t people just not murder each other for one freaking day?

It was supposed to be her first Christmas Eve with Castle.

Well, technically it still was since she’d yet to convince him to leave. She tried to coax him out of the precinct to spend time with his daughter and mother. He countered that he’d spent every previous Christmas Eve with them but this was the first that he’d get to spend with her all the while surreptitiously taking her hand and fixing soft, loving eyes on her. Any retort she had been forming stuttered and died in her throat. In all honestly, she didn’t want him to leave but it didn’t seem right that they should both be stuck staring at a murder board all night.

Though she’d be lying if she said she felt bad that he stayed.

Speaking of, where was Castle anyway? He had gone to get them more coffee but should have been back by now. She needed to walk away from these phone records for a little while and finding her partner seemed as good of an excuse as any. Kate stood and was harshly reminded by the sharp stab between her shoulder blades that she’d been hunched over her desk too long. She raised her arms over her head in a stretch, turning toward the break room but didn’t find Castle behind the espresso machine. It wouldn’t have been a surprise to find him taking a nap on the couch but when she walked to the doorway, she found the room empty.
As she turned to head back to her desk, he came around the corner from the back hallway. She shot him a confused look and he only grinned in response as he crossed the distance between them.
“I thought you were getting coffee,” she said as he approached.

“I did, c’mon,” he held out a hand for her but she planted her feet and regarded him skeptically.

“What are you up to?”

“You’ve been through those phone records how many times? Three? Four? Have you even looked outside?”

She started to turn but he snagged her by the elbow and drew her attention back to him. “No, don’t ruin it!”

“Ruin what?”

He took another step into her, the hand on her elbow softening. “Come with me and I’ll show you.” His voice was low, meant only for her and laced with affection. The shiver that ran through her had nothing to do with the temperature in the building.

She slid her hand into his, not quite sure what possessed her to do so without looking around first as she usually did. (Christmas spirit maybe?) “Lead the way.”

A pleased grin broke across his face and he tugged on her hand to draw her after him down the hallway. All the blinds were drawn, doors closed; she couldn’t catch a glimpse of the outside. She smiled as she imagined him going up and down the hallway, making sure that his reveal would be safe. Castle stopped at one of the doors and turned to her, his eyes brilliant and expectant. “Ready?”

Oh, this adorable man. This man that wouldn’t let her be alone on Christmas and wanted to surprise her with something to give her a break from work. She leaned in and captured his lips in a quick, warm kiss. “Ready.”

He opened the door and indicated that she should enter with a flourish of his hand. The lights were off but she could see two coffee cups sitting on the small table, steam curling over the tops. They were lit by the gold-orange glow from the streetlight right outside the window and…

Oh. That was the surprise.

Illuminated in the lamp’s light was a riot of snowflakes; big, fat cotton balls that danced as the winter wind caught them. The display drew Kate to the window; her hand rose almost of its own accord, fingertips brushing the glass as though she could run her fingers through the snow. She felt Castle’s warmth at her back; his hands settled on her hips for a moment before he wound his arms across her stomach and drew her back against him. She relaxed into him, dropped her head on his shoulder and tucked her temple against his cheek. She laid her hands on top of his, laced their fingers together and drew his arms tighter around her.

 “Thank you,” she breathed.

“No one should miss the first snow of the year.” He said it like it was nothing, like he hadn’t gone to any trouble at all to set this up for her. She was constantly amazed at how he could make loving someone seem so effortless.

“Not just for this. For knowing what I need before I need it. For wanting me to see things like this, for reminding me that there’s life to live even as other people lose theirs.”

Castle widened his stance to bring him down a few inches, correcting the slight height distance not addressed by his partner’s footwear, and turned his head to press a kiss into her neck. “Anything for you, Kate.” His breath was hot on her skin, branding the words there.

“I know. Just wanted to let you know that I see it. And appreciate it.”

She felt him smile against her neck before he moved his head to drop his chin to her shoulder. “Thank you.”

She laughed softly, more air out of her nose than any kind of a sound. “Pretty sure I was the one thanking you.”

“Mutual thanking then.” He thought about a second before adding, “And you’re welcome.”

In reply, she raised a hand to ruffle her fingers through his hair before settling her palm against his cheek. A smile bloomed across her face as he leaned into her touch. They lapsed into silence, the dancing snowflakes providing a hypnotic distraction.

“Hey Castle?” Kate half whispered into the quiet of the room. He hummed in acknowledgement of her question. “Merry Christmas.”

He stood and turned her in his embrace, one arm securely around her waist, the other raising to tuck a stray lock of hair behind her ear and cup a hand along her jaw. “Merry Christmas, Kate.”

He kissed her then, sure and sweet, and the joy of being with her this first Christmas was evident. But there was also promise in it, the promise of many more Christmases to come.
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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