(A NOTE: This fanfiction does contain a small mention of Temperance Brennan, from the TV Drama Show: BONES. I'm not making this a crossover since it only contains mention of her once. =D)

Rain fell steadily from the sky, drumming a rhythmical pattern on the glass windows of the New York Police Department. People rushed past, huddled deep into their jackets, wrapping scarves around their necks and rubbing their hands together to try and keep warm. The wicked wind whistled and howled with a life of its own, sweeping scraps of paper about in a whirlwind amongst the busy streets. A figure hurried down the busy road, their umbrella fighting against the wind, hardly sheltering the person at all. They pushed open the door with force, stumbling into the welcoming warmth of the foyer. Standing impatiently by the lift, they waited for it to open, removing their wet jacket and hurriedly closing the umbrella. Dinging as it arrived, the lift doors opened and the person stepped in. It made its way up, painstakingly slowly, floor by floor. It stopped, and the figure leapt out, as though they were arrived of being swallowed. Walking steadily forwards, they made their way to the main offices of the NYPD.

"Hey, Castle!" yelled Esposito as Castle walked over from the lift. "Where've you been, pal? We were starting to think you were lost," he said, trying to hide the smile that was creeping across his face.

"Castle, 'bout time you got here!" Ryan said, standing up to exaggerate.

"Whoa, sorry guys. Just got caught up in traffic. It's chaos back at my place, cars banked up the road for miles." Castle replied, hanging his wet jacket up on a coat peg, on the far side of the room. He dropped the black umbrella, and it clattered on the wooden floor, forgotten and lifeless. Beckett entered the room, three mugs of steaming hot coffee in her hands.

"Ah, hot coffee. Don't you just love Christmas?" Ryan nodded, looking at the others.

"Hm. Some weirdos think it's the perfect time to murder people," Beckett replied.

"And some writers think it's the perfect time to plan how to murder people," Castle added, hastily. Esposito and Ryan laughed, and Beckett tried to look serious.

"Oh, Castle. Did I ever mention? You're like a nine year old on a sugar rush," she said, and this was her time to laugh.

"I do believe that you mentioned something along those lines a while ago indeed," Castle grinned, slurping the coffee.

"Urgh!" he yelled, jumping up. "Why didn't you put any sugar in this?"

"I just told you why, if you'd been listening."

"Oh, come on. You're not serious?" he groaned, looking at the coffee in dismay. Ryan clapped as Lanie entered, donning her jacket and umbrella over by Castles.

"Hey everyone," she greeted, standing by Kate Beckett, "looks a snow storm is starting out their tonight. Glad we're all cosy in here," she exclaimed, rubbing her hands together as she leant forward to pick up a piece of Turkish delight from the centre of the table that they were all gathered around. Tinsel hung from the corner of each room, and there were all sorts of toys and gifts gathered on workers desks.

"Yeah. Bet you there'll be a murder or something tonight," Esposito cast his eyes around the table.

"Pfft, yeah right. Wishful thinking, Mr Lazy worker," Beckett laughed.

"In your dreams," Ryan agreed with Beckett.

"I'm with Esposito on this one!" Castle shouted, like an excited child.

"Gosh, settle down, would you Castle?" Lanie muttered, "Beckett is right, you are like a nine year old on a sugar rush."

"That's a compliment, at our age, anyhow," he replied, eyes glinting with happiness. Beckett was surprised at this comment, seeming as Castle was only one year older than herself, at 36. The fake grin plastered across her face must have been obvious, as Castle stopped smiling when she made eye contact.

"Yes, and so, the evening continues," he said, quietly. "I was working on my latest book this afternoon, then Alexis came bounding in, bright eyed and bushy tailed."

"Oh, and why's this?" Esposito said, leaning close as though Castle were letting him in on a big secret.

"Well," Castle said, leaning closer as though they were indeed discussing a secret. "She wants to write a book, a murder book. Just like me," he whispered, hoping to create the suspense, "and apparently it's because she spent all afternoon chatting to someone," Castle said, laughing as he tried to keep eye contact with Ryan.

Ryan held up his hands, "I'm innocent. Had absolutely nothing to do with this afternoon's events."

"Oh really?" Beckett said, leaning in as they sat in a close huddle around the small wooden table.

"Sounds like a great book plan to me, Castle," Lanie interrupted.

"Shh!" Ryan and Esposito turned around to signal for Lanie to be quiet.

"Yes, she wants to be a cop, a writer or a forensic investigator. All because of you," and at this point, Castle pointed at Ryan.

"Eh, I told you I was innocent!" Ryan laughed, smiling.

"Or maybe it was you," Castle said, pointing to Esposito.

"Sorry pal, I wasn't even here this afternoon," Esposito replied, smirking as Ryan started to gasp.

"Shut that mouth of yours, Ryan, a bug'll fly into it in a minute," Lanie said, slapping Ryan on the shoulder.

"Or, perhaps it was you…" Castle said, looking at Lanie.

"Oh, yeah. I forgot to mention that she did drop by at one point this arvo. Is it a criminal offence to talk to someone else's daughter?" Lanie laughed.

"No, however, convincing them to drop out of school is!" Beckett joined in laughing. Before they knew it, they were all sitting around merrily chatting about happy memories and their upcoming plans for the new year.

"10 new year resolutions," Esposito said, "being 2010 and all."

"Like that idea. Could you fit 'work' on that list somewhere?" Beckett said, as the wicked wind battered against the windows. They shook and rattled in their frames, making the evening chillier than it already was. It grew later and later into the evening, as time slipped past as though it were water in a storm water drain. The wind became more wicked, grabbing the building with its imaginary hands. Thunder started to rumble in the distance, and it paused conversation.

"That was thunder?" Ryan asked and a hint of worry flashed across his eyes.

"Yes," Beckett replied, nodding. "You know, the thing that happens during the sky in the middle of a thunderstorm?" she said, with emphasis on the thunder part of the sentence.

"Look at that time! We should get going," Castle said, as lightning flashed against the window, the light rippling like a white ribbon, flung through the sky by the dark and bony hand that resembled the sky.

"It's only, what the hell! It's quarter to one in the morning!" Ryan yelled, slamming his fist on the table.

"What?!" Beckett stopped talking to Esposito. "It seemed to be 7pm, like, only fifteen minutes ago!"

"Yep, this is what they mean when they say time flies." Castle exclaimed, picking up his jacket and forgotten umbrella.

"I'll never make sense of that, you know. Time, does not fly. It's measured by the clock on the wall, and it shall never fly," Beckett said, thinking of her close friend, Temperance Brennan, who worked at the Jeffersonian Institute in Washington DC.

"In that case, we'd better get going," Esposito said, standing up.

"Hey, who's gonna clean up this place?" Lanie questioned, pointing to the mess that had accumulated on the table where they'd been sitting.

"I'm not," said Ryan, closely followed by Beckett.

"Whatever, we'll do it in the morning when we get to work. It's not as though we're working really hard on a case or anything, there's been nothing coming through for weeks now."

"There's been no murders, no robberies, nothing. You'd have a fair chance at guessing that all the bad guys had stopped to celebrate Christmas this year," laughing, Beckett pressed the elevator button.

Famous last words, thought Castle, as they waited for the elevator to arrive. Ryan laughed, and they settled into a dreaded silence as they waited for the lift.

"Come on, this thing needs repairing," Esposito said, jamming the button impatiently.

"We called it a couple of minutes ago, where is it?" Ryan said, starting to sound a little anxious.

"Come on, no need to stress about it. It's probably just been affected by the storm or something, so we'll take the stairs instead," motioning towards the stairs, Beckett pulled Castle's arm as a motion of come on, stop standing around people.

If they had waited for the lift, they would have been waiting a terribly long time. Since it sat at the bottom of the elevator shaft, wires sparking at the point of where they'd been cut. A young girl sat in the lift, shaking as she pounded on the stiff doors.

"Somebody, anybody, help me!" she screamed, her voice echoing in the space of the lift, before she broke into even louder sobs.