Monday, 27 May 2013

Undercover Lovers #19: I Don't Love You

This one is actually the longest Undercover Lover I've written to date so that's definitely something to be proud of. Hairspray closed last night and so I'll be back to my "regular life" within the next few days. I just need a little time to recover. I have lots of responsible adult things to do in the coming months and I'm not looking forward to any of them. Life is just beating me lately. Really hard. Like

So anyways, later this week you'll be getting the next JuNoWriMo lesson but for now...enjoy!

Her heart was broken. Or breaking. Or something equivalent to reaching a hand into her chest and ripping out her heart because the way he was looking at her now made her want to run away. Maybe if she ran she wouldn’t have to stand here in the middle of the street just outside the hospital where he’d just been released. She wouldn’t have to look him in the eyes knowing her hands were shaking too hard to comfort him like she so desperately wanted to. If she ran, he wouldn’t see the tears boiling up behind her eyelids, begging to be freed into the cruel world.

“Rick, I can’t do this anymore. I’m sorry.”

“You’re saying it’s over?” He rolled his shoulder, hyperaware that everyone was watching him; the man with his heart on his sleeve getting it thrown back at him. “Because of a sprained wrist? Kate, accidents happen, this wasn’t your fault.”

Somewhere in the inner monologue she was running over and over she knew he was right. “That’s not the point. The point is, you’re stupid and reckless and…” she swallowed down the voice screaming ‘liar’. “and I can’t have someone like that on my team.”

He stared at her, those baby blues that saw through her every defense – her every secret – and tore down all those damn walls. The eyes that looked at her like she’d shaken his world to its core and punched him in the gut. No, she’d seen him get punched in the gut. This was worse. “I thought we were passed this, Kate. I thought that I had proved to you that I’m more… that I’m more. I’m more because of you and why the hell is this coming up now?” And in an instant, his eyes grew dark and his back straightened and he fought back. “Why have you decided after all these years that you don’t want me around?”

“I told you, you’re”

“I’ve always been stupid and reckless but I’m stupid and reckless for you, so what’s changed, Kate? What made you wake up today and decide that today’s the day you don’t want me as your partner anymore?”

He wasn’t going to make this easy was he? If he had been complacent like she’d rehearsed they could just go their separate ways. But he had to bite and scratch and kick until he made his point. Stubborn, hopeless man. “I never wanted you as my partner, that’s the point.” They were toe to toe; close enough to kiss but her crisp words murdered any hope of redemption. “You just waltzed into my life one day and decided that you wanted to play cop and I had to go along with it. And you stayed and you stayed and you pried into my private life and kept picking at my scars until I gave up and decided that pretending to love you as much as you loved playing cop was easier than trying to constantly push you away. Well no more.” They were breathing the same air, holding the same breath, breaking the same heart. “The mayor is gone, the captain wants you out. And now so do I.”

“Ka-kate what’s going on?”

She closed her eyes, she wouldn’t have to see him and he wouldn’t see her quivering chin against her clenched jaw or her white knuckles. “We’re breaking uh.” She chocked on her words, spitting them out in a haste for closure. “up. We’re breaking up.”

He grabbed her shoulders, hissing at the pain in his wrist and jolting her eyes open. The fear in his eyes was almost her undoing. “No, I mean this isn’t you. Is someone making you do this, Kate?”

In her mind, her eyes are so full of tears she couldn’t see him but unfortunately, she maintained composure, looking through him with clear eyes, clouded over with the injustice of doing this out in the open. She had hoped he would take it better if they were in a public place but he wasn’t – of course he wasn’t. “I’m sorry, Rick. I’m so sorry.”

“No, this-this isn’t you. This isn’t us. Something is going on if you tell me we can”

“I don’t love you.”

And the world stopped. For just a minute, the world around them stopped turning while he tried to let her words seep into his skin.

“I never loved you. And I’m sorry I hurt you but”

“Why are you doing this?”

The intensity of his eyes was too much to bear and so she looked away and made eye contact the other man. The one she had actually come to see; the one in scrubs exiting the hospital on his break. Perfect timing, almost like it was fated or planned. “Josh.”

He couldn’t keep his eyes off of her, afraid she’d run or hide or disappear like she’d never existed, like she’d never stepped into his life and changed him forever; like she wasn’t trying to walk away now. “Josh? Your exboyfriend Josh?”

She swallowed, returning to the remains of the man before her. “I still love him.”


“I never stopped. We had something good going and you and your stupid emotions got in the way of everything.”

He scoffed, or tried to with a closed throat and tears in his eyes. “Now I know something’s wrong.”

“The only thing that’s wrong is that you still don’t get it. We’re over. We never should have started in the first place.”

“No Kate” he reached for again but she sidestepped him so their positions were reversed.

“Go home, Rick. Heal your wrist.” She almost replaced it with broken heart until she realized just how close that statement was. “I don’t expect I’ll see you ever again.” She stalked away, her head held high, tears shaking her body with the weight of them. His cries after her barely registered except to shoot an arrow through her heart with each syllable. She didn’t stop until she reached her car and she slid into the driver’s seat, locked her door and collapsed against the steering wheel.

It seemed so unfair for the sun to be shining while his world came crashing down around him but the world moved on and the people passed him and he somehow knew that Josh Davidson was still watching him from the hospital door. He turned around and he was alone.

Kate blindly reached into her pocket out of habit when it vibrated indicating a new text message. It was from him.

Are you okay?


A fresh wave of tears wracked her body until she was too exhausted to move. She cried until the emotions of the last lifetime were expelled from her body and she had to figure out her next move. She texted back through bleary eyes.

Can you come over later?

The crowd parted for Kate Beckett as she stormed through the precinct and straight to her desk without a second glance at the terrified officers around her. All she could see was Rick’s face. So sweet, so open, so hurt at the words that had come tumbling out her mouth in her need to be anywhere but outside that hospital. She slammed drawers harder than necessary and nearly tore a seam in her overpriced coat but she barely noticed over the echoes of Rick calling after her as she ran to her car.

Kate? Kate! Beckett!

“Beckett?” God, Ryan sounded scared of her. What was wrong with her?

She closed her eyes to dispel the memories, forcing herself to focus on the present. “What Ryan?”

“I take it you talked to Castle?”

She flinched. Oh yeah, she talked to Castle. And yelled and bit and clawed. “Yeah. It’s done.”

He tried to reach a hand out to her but years of comradery and even longer in Catholic school taught him not to touch. “I’m sorry”

She slammed her chair against her desk, not finding the strength to sit down. “I don’t want you to be sorry I want this to be over.” She couldn’t be here, not out in the open like the gaping wound she felt like; stinging and raw, bared for the world to see. She grabbed her empty coffee cup left stained on her desk from yesterday. Yesterday, when everything didn’t feel horrible and she didn’t have the sudden urge to run home. Josh will be here soon. She tripped as she rounded her desk on the way to the break room, staring at Castle’s chair longer than necessary. The damn thing was mocking her.

Ryan followed her into the break room, Esposito slipping in behind and closing the door. The stares would subside soon enough. “Beckett it had to be done.”

She tossed the mug in the sink, careful that it didn’t shatter for fear of metaphorical overload. “I know that. I just wish I could have told him what was going on.”

“You know there wasn’t enough time. He was still in the hospital when the call came in and you were a last minute decision.” Javier Esposito: master of comfort.

She wanted to glare at him but she knew he was trying to keep her level headed. Breaking up with a man when she meant to break up with him was hard enough, but having to push him away when all she wanted was to fall into his arms? It took a lot out of her. “Why can’t I tell him now?” Oh god, she was whining wasn’t she? Castle had really rubbed off on her. Her chest collapsed from the weight of her heavy heart.

“Because Josh is going to be in your life for the next while. We can’t risk him finding out that he’s under investigation. You just have to tough it out.”

“Well maybe one of you guys can tell him?”

“Not if you want him to stay out of your way during the investigation.” Esposito offered her a weak smile.

“Look, Beckett we’re sorry. This isn’t a good situation for any of us.” Ryan was trying his best to be sweet. “You know this is the only scenario that guarantees success. It won’t be for very long and once it’s over you and Castle can probably take a vacation or something and work it all out.”

Her shoes suddenly became the most interesting thing to her. Leaning back against the counter, she worked hard to maintain her composure. “You didn’t see his face; I don’t know if he’ll ever forgive me.”

“Are you kidding me?” Esposito laughed. “The man always comes back. He loves you and he’ll understand.”

“Guys, I said some things – horrible things. I don’t think”

“Beckett.” LT stuck his head through the door with an almost dark expression. “There’s someone downstairs who wants to see you.”

It was her greatest dream and her biggest nightmare, thinking that Castle was downstairs waiting for her. Thinking he’d come back for her. “Wh-who?”

“Josh Davidson.”

“It was all a lie? You bitch.” She wasn’t expecting him to throw a punch at her but really, she should have. All the things she said and done over the last three months would make any man believe she had fallen back in love. Of course she should have expected this new Josh to hit her squarely in the jaw, knocking her into the concrete wall of the parking garage where three officers tackled him before he could take another breath. More than a little disoriented, Kate allowed her boys to handle the rest as she wobbled her way across the cement underground to where her motorcycle was parked. While Ryan read the former doctor his rights, Esposito followed Beckett.

“Hey, are you alright?”

They took places beside each other against the side of the bike, not needing to look at each other. She wiggled her jaw. “Yeah I should be alright, just took me by surprise.”

“That’s not what I meant.”

She risked a glance and saw him patiently watching her, something he rarely did. He just waited until she smiled and turned away, shaking her head. “I messed things up big time.”

He bumped her shoulder, offering her a comforting smile. “Nothing you can’t fix. Now come on, let me drive you back to the precinct, you’re in no condition to drive that death trap.” She gaped at her partner and followed him.

His head slowly came up as the elevator chimed and flew open and pushed him out onto the humming floor of the twelfth precinct’s homicide division. Crowds of officers and detectives passed him by, a few pausing to nod at him with familiarity and a twinge of sympathy. It seemed everyone knew the current situation – or maybe they just noticed he hadn’t been around the precinct for the last few months. It was like all those summers ago except worse, much, much worse. He barely took notice of them as she came into view.

She was walking back to her desk with an ice pack to the side of her head. His heart stopped but his feet ran straight to her. “Kate?”

“Castle?” She turned and her heart stopped with his. The crowd parted for him as he rushed to her side, instantly inspecting her face and neck and wrists and arms for any other injuries.  She passed the icepack off to Ryan. She would need both hands for this.

“Are you hurt?”


The intensity of the baby blues that she hadn’t been able to look at in months was overwhelming; made her want to cry out in relief.  “Are you hurt?”


“Where?” He wasn’t expecting the punch to his shoulder with her left arm. It stung; more than usual. “Ow.”

“My heart hurts.” She confessed in such a soft tone that she thought no one else could hear it. But he did; he always did.

He rubbed his arm. “Why does your heart hurt?”

“I just punched it.” She blinked up at him, hoping her desire to melt into him shone through her eyes.

Ryan scoffed, waving his hands in disbelief. “Oh come on that was so”

His partner elbowed him lightly, shooting a warning look. “Shh”

Beckett heard nothing because Castle was here, the man whose heart she’d ripped out, and he saw only here. Like they’d never been apart. “You’re never this sappy,” he scolded.

“It’s the concussion.” All the colour left his face but she brought up a hand to sooth the confusion in his eyes. “Later,” she promised him with tender eyes. “I am so sorry.”

He searched her eyes for a reason but then looked down at her left hand and he felt the world crumble beneath his feet. “Is that?” He swallowed his heartache “Did Josh give you a ring?”

She wanted to laugh and cry and call him such an idiot. “No, this is”

“Then why are you sorry?”

“For hurting you.” She hung her head ashamed. “For making you think I didn’t love you.”

“I never doubted you.”

Her head shot up and all the words, all the horrible, horrible words came flooding back and she couldn’t think straight. “Huh?”

“I know you Kate, even if all those terrible things you said to me were true, you’d never hurt me like that.” He held her hands up, running his fingers over the soft skin for the first time in so long. How he had missed those strong, wonderful hands. “I don’t know what’s going on – I still don’t, and we’re going to talk about that later – but, I never doubted you.”

“I love you.” The words were out before she could control them. She’d confessed her love for him before but these syllables slipped off her tongue, heavy and clinging to the air. It was so hard and yet so easy to throw them out there knowing he’d catch them.

He smiled at her with that crinkly smile that turned her heart over and made her want to do cartwheels. That smile that told her they would be okay. “So then is that”
She held up her hand a little higher, admiring the ring that had been sitting on her finger all afternoon. She wondered why she’d never put it on in the first place. “It’s your ring Rick, the ring you gave me before all this happened.”

And then the sudden urge to kiss her made him recognize his surroundings and remember that they were, in fact standing in a crowded room of police officers, most of whom were watching them get closer and closer. “Maybe we should take this somewhere more private.”

He tugged her hand but she pulled him back to her. “No, I’m not hiding this. I want everyone to know.” She raised her voice. “I love you Rick Castle.” She held up her left hand to show it off to the world but her eyes never left his – would never leave his again. “And this ring means I’m going to marry you and we’re going to be together forever.”

He was jumping around in his mind, his heart soaring around the room, his eyes so light and full of love. He brought his arm around her waist and pulled her close, the playfulness finally returned.
“Forever is a long time, what if I want out?”
“Too bad, because I have a gun and you don’t really have a choice.”

He could kiss her right now. “Oh okay then.” And he did. And it was splendid and wonderful, and fireworks shot through the sky as he pulled her close and refused to let her go until the room erupted in cheers and whistles and one Kate Beckett hummed in happiness. He finally, finally released her but only long enough to glance over at Captain Gates who was leaning against the doorframe with her hands crossed over her chest.


“Yes, Mr. Castle?”

“Permission for Beckett to have the rest of the day off?”

She glared but the years had removed much of the darkness, leaving only amusement. “As long as she reports back to work first thing in the morning.”

He had already grabbed his fiancĂ©e’s hand and begun dragging her towards the elevator when he called over his shoulder “thank you, Sir.”

The elevator, made perfect time, opening for the new couple in record Hollywood time. “And Mr. Castle?” He looked up even as Kate kept her hand clasped in his and just couldn’t stop staring at him. “Congratulations.” He nodded in thanks as the doors closed and Kate and Rick lived happily ever after.

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