A/N: Another insert scene for 7x01 "Driven". This is after Castle and Beckett tell Espo and Ryan about the fake Jenkins and the hacking of the DMV.
After leaving the precinct, Kate and Rick had gone directly to her apartment. Kate had gone over all the pieces of evidence with Rick. He had read the reports, the newspaper articles and Kate's notes. Kate had sat next to him, sipping a glass of wine and feeling the heat radiate from his thigh that touched hers. He looked at her at intervals with a wounded expression, and she would run her hand over his leg or along his forearm. When he finished, she saw the tears threaten to fall from his eyes. She drew his hand to her lips and kissed his fingers. "I'm so sorry I didn't find you. I followed every lead we had. After the video of the money drop, the FBI dropped the investigation. I never stopped looking for you. Castle, I never stopped."
The reunited couple rose from the sofa and stood shoulder to shoulder in front of the murder board in Kate's apartment. "So, I was run off the road by a stolen SUV. I remember that at least. I was dragged from the car," Rick pointed to the photo of the footprints and drag marks. "The Mercedes was torched. We'll have to pick out a new car together," Rick smiled at Kate for just a moment. She smiled back, and he turned back to the murder board. "You found the SUV as it was being crushed. Vinnie set up the destruction of the SUV and told you about the money drop. He even gave back the cash. There is video of me making that money drop, and no one else was seen on the video. Were there cameras showing how I got to the alley?" Kate shook her head, and Rick asked, "Do I get my money back, since the FBI was able to prove it was my cash?"
Kate smiled widely as she replied, "I'm sure you can get the court to give you your money back."
"They took two months of my life, Kate. Getting the money back is a small victory."
Rick paused, took a deep breath and continued his summary of the evidence, "After the video, the FBI decided to drop their investigation. I don't understand why one piece of video convinced so many people to think I was behind this. Kate, all the kidnappers had to do was threaten you or Alexis, and I would have given them all the money I had. I would have dropped it off in Hell to keep you both safe." Kate slid her arm around his waist, but was too overcome with emotion to speak. "Was any money withdrawn from any of my accounts or was there any credit card use?"
"We flagged your accounts and your cards. There was no activity other than what your accountant did to pay your monthly bills, and what Martha and Alexis needed each month. One of the FBI agents suggested you had an offshore account, and I wanted to deck him," Kate answered.
Rick smiled at Kate's admission about the FBI agent. "Two months after I disappeared, the Coast Guard found me unconscious in a blue dinghy 80 miles from shore. The captain told you he thinks I was in the boat for 4 or 5 days. I was dehydrated and sunburned. Do you think the red skin brings out the blue in my eyes?" Rick's joke surprised Kate, and she laughed derisively with an accompanying eye roll. "Too soon? Okay, back to the investigation. There were 3 bullet holes in the boat. Lanie found dengue fever antibodies in my blood and a healing gunshot graze on my side. There was a key labeled 38 sewn into my pants. Do you have any idea what kind of key that is?"
"CSU thought maybe a mailbox, but we have nothing to go on with that."
"I should look at it and see if it seems familiar. Next, the dinghy led you to Henry Jenkins and a tent on the shore, which he said I was living in. The tent was filled with my belongings and what looked like the detritus of my living there. If I hadn't insisted we go to the campsite, if I hadn't wanted to meet Henry Jenkins, would we be here? Would you have gotten past your doubts?" Rick looked at Kate.
Kate felt her face start to flush, and she looked at her feet. After taking a deep breath to regain her composure, "Castle, I would have needed to know the whole story. I know I would have investigated more, but yes, the doubts might have remained. I never stopped loving you, even when the doubts took over my mind. My heart is yours, always."
Rick kissed Kate's temple, "I'm certain that if I had staged my own death, I would have written a scenario that didn't involve my near death." Kate glared at him. Rick defended himself, "I would never leave you, Kate. I lost two months of my life, and our wedding was ruined. You, Mother and Alexis were put thru agony. I don't know what happened to me. Why can't I remember?" Rick's voice was heavy with anguish. "Javi still thinks I had something to do with it, doesn't he?"
"I don't think he does. Finding out about Henry Jenkins being a fake gave him a clue that he could hang onto," Kate answered. "Ryan didn't accept that you might be involved, until we found the tent. That's when I lost my focus, too. I am so sorry. I should have known. I should have known."
"Do you think we'll ever find out who did this?" Rick asked.
Kate rested her hands on Rick's waist and looked at his sad, blue eyes, "We will find them Rick. It may take time, but we will find them together. Let's go home, babe."
Rick smiled at her, closed the shutters that held the evidence and echoed her sentiment, "Let's go home." He picked up one of Kate's packed bags, and she picked up the other. They left Kate's apartment together.
A/N: This is complete now. I just needed to fill in the holes with something that made sense to me. I am still perturbed that the writers of Castle had some of the characters lose their faith in Rick over that video, despite the other evidence.