Kate is standing at the smart board trying to get a handle on the case she is working when she feels the vibration of her phone alerting her to an incoming text. Pulling the phone out of her pocket she swipes across the screen to see the message is from Castle. Her chest constricts a little at the thought. Just knowing that he is thinking of her this early in the morning causes a warm sensation to unfurl in her chest, from her fingers all the way down to the tips of her toes. Working in DC has definitely been a challenge to their relationship and that is putting it lightly. Oh, how she misses him. It's been six long weeks since she saw him last. Her team leader has told them they would be able to have a few days off when they wrap this case up. It's the only thing that forces her out of bed each morning, the promise of soon...of home. Sighing, she taps on the screen and sees a picture of a cup of coffee and a bear claw with the caption "Morning… coffee?" Smiling, she snaps a picture of her half empty coffee mug sitting on her desk with a caption "not even close to as good as yours" and texts it back to him.
No sooner has she sent her text another arrives. "Coffee isn't the only thing I'm good at you know." With a roll of her eyes and a blush of her cheeks, she recalls all the things he's good at and the last time she experienced his special skills. She fires off another text before turning back to the smart board. "You'll have to refresh my memory whe next. ILY"
Before she can even put her phone back in her pocket she receives another text. "ILY 2, talk later?"
Seeing McCord walk in, Kate quickly sends her reply. "Yes, later. Gotta go now."
As the day drags on, and fatigue begins to set in from another long morning chasing down several promising leads, Kate finally has a chance to sit down at her desk to eat her very unappealing lunch. Just as she is about to take her first bite a text arrives from Castle. As she taps on the message to open it, a picture of a milkshake, fries and hamburger from Remy's appears before her eyes accompanied by two words..."My lunch."
Her lunch, looking all the more unappealing makes her snap a picture of the sandwich and chips on her desk. Kate sends him the photo along with these words. "My lunch...I hate u a little right now!"
As usual, the response is immediate. "Jealous?"
Crunching on a stale chip she replies, "so jealous, especially if that shake is strawberry & u r sharing it with someone else."
Another reply arrives before she can take another bite. "I would never...only u!"
Pushing her sandwich away, she sends another message. The food from Remy's and the familiar banter make her miss him more. "Promise?"
His one word response warms her heart and causes tears to well up in her eyes. "Always."
She looks up to the ceiling above her as she tries to regain her composure, willing the tears to subside. With a brush of her hand to swipe at the one escaped tear, she takes a picture of an empty chair next to her desk and sends it to him with the words "Miss u... gotta go. Talk later."
Grabbing her uneaten sandwich and chips to throw away she reads his reply before going to join Rachel. "Miss u 2, Skype later...want to c u when we talk."
Feeling eyes on her, Kate shoots a quick text in reply. "Me 2, can't wait..."
Hours pass before she realizes she has another text. She opens the text to reveal a picture of him sitting alone at their swings. He must have had someone take the photo for him. She thinks as she reads the caption he included with the picture. "Happiest day of my life!"
A smile graces her face as she texts him back, "Mine too."
A few minutes later he sends back a question. "When r u gonna b home? Need 2 c u."
"Hope this weekend." She replies thinking she already told him about the promise of a few days off.
"I meant tonight." He sends.
"Not home without u." She replies feeling even more depressed about their long separation.
"Is being a Fed making u sappy? Or just being blissfully in love doing it 2 u?" He teases.
"Just missing u...been 2 long."
"Kate what time 2nite?" He asks again trying to snap her out of her funk.
"9?" She types, hoping her day will end long before that.
"Really? Is that when u get home? Or just date time?" He questions.
"home, cross fingers?" She cringes, knowing her response will be met by concern.
And there it is in his reply, "U r working 2 much."
"Can't help it, lots to learn." She shakes her head in response, appreciating his concern but doubting her own ability to absorb all she is learning. "Breaks over, luv u." What she wouldn't give to hear something reassuring from him.
"U got this Kate. U r gonna b g8! ILY2." He hurriedly answers sensing her self doubt, who knew they could still be so in sync even so many miles apart.
Six o'clock comes and goes, but Kate remains at the office pouring over files. Longing for a bath, a glass of wine and a good book to take her mind off of the day she's having. I need to get out of here and go back to the apartment. Ugh! I can't even call that place home. It is so empty and cold. I've been here two months and still haven't unpacked my stuff. God I miss the loft...I miss home. I'm not going to miss that Skype session tonight. We've had to cancel too many times over the last six weeks. I'm not going to be the one to cancel this time. I need to get out of here and get some fresh air...clear my head. I'll start fresh again tomorrow.
When she takes notice of the now mostly empty room that her colleagues vacated some time ago and the clock nearing seven, she packs up her bag and decides to leave before something forces her to stay or causes her to miss her date with a certain ruggedly handsome man who is waiting to see her. It isn't the same as going home to him but it's all they have at the moment. Thank God for Skype, at least they can see each other this way.
Instead of catching the subway at her normal stop, she decides the time outside will do her some good. She walks a few blocks so she can run past the corner grocery to grab some dinner and a bottle of wine to enjoy in that bath she has been thinking about all day. As she makes her way down the sidewalk something draws her attention. Turning her head to see what drew her interest, she notices a book store off to her right. Like a magnet she is drawn to the store window where a life size cut out of a smirking Richard Castle beams back at her. Feeling a little giddy at the sight of her fiance she gets an idea. She rushes into the store, hands her the iPhone to the sales clerk and asks if she would snap a picture of her kissing the cheek of the cardboard cutout. The woman looks at her like she has lost her mind but humors her by snapping off a couple shots for her kissing the cardboard representation of her fiance. After retrieving her phone, she pulls up the photos and chooses the best one to send to Rick in a text. "I can almost feel u breathing down my neck!"
"Beckett, if I was that close to u, I would b doing far more than breathing down your neck!" He counters her tease.
Before she can respond she gets another message. "Kinda hard 2 breath down your neck with your shirt buttoned up like that. Maybe u should pop a few buttons?"
Deciding to tease just a bit more, Kate takes the elastic band from her ponytail, shakes her hair out and opens a few buttons on her blouse revealing a hint of the lace underneath much like she did a couple years ago in front of the Old Haunt. Noticing a few people staring at her antics, Kate decides that she needs a little assistance and hands her phone back to the laughing clerk and explains that she needs just one more photo of herself standing next to the cutout to play a joke on a friend.
Grinning to herself as she pulls up the photo and enters the following caption before pressing send, "u mean like this?"
She isn't disappointed when Castle's text arrives. "Katherine Beckett r Feds allowed 2 look that hot?"
"Not Agent Beckett right now, just Kate." She answers.
"You are gorgeous. Done 4 the day?" He inquires hoping she is almost ready to video chat.
"Yeps grocery then all yours." She promises.
"Thought u might want a sexy photo 2!" She reads as she takes in the picture of a man's leg? He thinks he's so funny. "Thought u might wanna c a little leg Beckett."
Rolling her eyes, she laughs as she sends her reaction to his sexy photo. "I'm more of an ass girl Castle"
"That can be arranged. Do u prefer bare or clad in tight denim?"
"Either as long as it's yours, babe." She blushes as she continues their verbal sparring.
"My ass is all yours honey!"
"u r an ass!"
"That I am, but u love me!"
"I do." She texts back thinking about someday in their future when those two words will be so much more than they are at this moment.
As she sees his next message arrive she hesitates a moment before she checks it, thinking it will have something to do with the two word reply she sent moments ago. She is surprised when she reads this instead. "Run your errands so we can Skype. Can't take the teasing anymore...gotta go take a cold shower now!"
"Can't take the heat, Rick?"
"Not from 200 miles away when I can't do anything about it."
"Soon...I'll make it up 2 u. 6 weeks worth!"
"I'll hold u 2 it."
"God I hope so, give me an hour to get to apt." She sends as she enters the store.
"k" is the only thing he sends.
With her hands full, Kate leans back and kicks her door closed with her heel. Dropping her grocery bag on the floor, she leans against the door and massages her temples willing her pounding headache to go away. She crosses to the kitchen and sets the bag on the counter and reaches into a cabinet to grab a wine glass. She opens her bag and pulls out her favorite bottle of red wine that she picked up at the store on the way home. It's the same brand that Castle got her hooked on. The only drawback is that he isn't here to share it with her. But it really does help her relax, maybe too much, because when she drinks this wine she feels a bit frisky too. Ugh. Not helping Kate, she scolds herself and her racy thoughts. She uncorks the bottle to let it breathe as she heads toward the bathroom to start the water for a bath. She just needs to submerge herself. Maybe if she stays under the water long enough she will forget all about her major faux-pas she made earlier in the day where she was shot in the chest during her training exercise. That really took the wind out of her. Lying on the concrete and seeing that blood on her shirt brought all the memories of her shooting into stark clarity. Not seeing Castle was a bit of a relief and disappointment both. Relief that he wasn't there to see the blood, fake or not, on her shirt and disappointment because he was the one that made her feel like everything was going to be okay that day in the cemetery. If he would have been there with her today, he would have made her feel okay about her mistake. She is being stupid, she knows. She pours a thick glob of bubble bath under the running water and watches as bubbles appear across the water. She lights the scented candles by the corner of the tub and steps out of her clothes. Slipping into her robe, she goes back out to the kitchen in search of her wine. Her phone starts ringing as she begins to pour. It's Rick.
"Hey there, did I catch you at a bad time?" he asks.
"No, I wouldn't say that exactly," she replies softly.
"You sure? You sound a bit preoccupied." He questions.
"No, just glad to hear your voice. I was actually getting ready to slip into the tub," she answers.
"Oh, bubbles huh, that bad of a day?" He asks with a hint of concern.
"You could say that," she trails off.
"Anything I can do to help?" He offers.
"Maybe," she replies, as she grabs her wine glass, heads to her bedroom and snags her I-pad off her bed on her way to the bathroom. "You promised we could Skype tonight, are you still in the mood?"
"Me?" He huffs.
"Yes you, silly, I was sorta hoping you could read to me tonight. I haven't had much of a chance to read 'Deadly Heat'. Besides the live version is so much better." She all but purrs into the phone.
Rick audibly swallows. God she is going to kill me tonight with her bedroom voice, he thinks to himself. "Sure Kate, anything you need..."
"Oh I need, Rick." She interrupts him. "Really, really, neeed."
"K-A-T-E" he groans. He can deal with a lot of things, but naked Kate is his kryptonite. He hears splashing in the tub and yep, totally turned on now. Deep breaths, Rick, in through your nose and out through your mouth he chants to himself.
"Still there Castle?"
"Yep" he breathes.
"Just fine," he lies, as he adjusts himself. He picks up his copy of 'Deadly Heat' and opens his laptop to open the Skype program. More splashing accosts his ears. He actually thinks he heard her giggle.
"You sure?" she asks again. She knows he's lying, she can hear his heavy breathing through the phone. She smiles to herself, she knows she is teasing him mercilessly but she can't help it. Kate loves this man and the way he makes her feel. With just the sound of his voice through the phone, the tension in her shoulders is already beginning to ease. Yeah, he does that to her. "Babe, still there?"
"Yeah, still here," he grunts. "Just starting up the Skype program. You should be able to see me now."
Her heart flutters in anticipation as she clicks the icon to open the app on her tablet. And there he is, her beautiful man smiling back at her.
"God it's good to see you, Kate."
"Yeah, you too" she says as she leans back against the tub and adjusts the pillow behind her head.
"You ready for me to read to you?" He kicks off his shoes and reclines back in his chair getting comfy like her, or at least trying to. He loves this part of the day when he gets to see her and not just hear her voice. Modern technology at its finest.
She leans forward to reach for her wine when she hears him clear his throat. She looks up at the screen and he is cocking his eyebrow at her. "Oh sorry, here let me blow some of these bubbles out of the way for you." She literally blows them away enough to reveal the tops of her breasts to him. "Better?" He lets out a breath he was holding and she laughs. "I'm sorry, not enough you say?" Leaning forward, she waves away more bubbles, now fully exposing her chest to him.
"Yeah, Kate, waaaay better, thank you." As he squirms around a bit in his chair, which of course she sees him do causing her to smirk at him. "Oh you think you're funny don't you?"
He gets up out of his chair, grabs his laptop, heads into his bedroom shutting and locking the door. The last thing he needs right now is an interruption from Martha or Alexis. He shucks off his shirt and pants, leaving his boxers on offering her a full body view including the tented boxers he is now sporting thanks to her. She snorts a laugh at him. "Yeah, laugh all you want, I'll remember that when I see you next. And I don't mean on the computer, I mean face-to-face…"
"Rick Castle, are you threatening me?" She asks.
"Whatever it takes, Kate, your killing me here," he smirks back at her.
God, she misses him. But she is glad she teased him because now she has an unobstructed view of his bare chest. It makes her feel even closer to him somehow. "Okay, I think I'm all ready. Will you read to me now?" she asks.
"Of course. Anything for you Kate." He says as he starts reading.
She smiles at that, and leans her head back against the pillow and closes her eyes to the sound of him reading to her. She couldn't have asked for a better way to end her day. The soothing tones of his voice is just what she needed.