Monday, 24 June 2013

Undercover Lovers #23: Normal

This is the last in the Undercover Lovers series *gasp*

I know you're all deeply disappointed to see it go but I'll find something to fill the void. Eventually. I actually don't know what to do. I have two more fan fics that I'm planning to write in the month of July so I might post those here but I'd prefer to start focusing this blog.

Originally the themes of this blog were sex and death and how they play into writing fiction. We haven't really done that. Now that doesn't mean I'm going to stop doing reviews, guests posts and blog tours for books that are outside of the genre but I'm definitely going to try and get more focus. Do more stuff like Forensic Fridays and post more of my writing and not just fan fiction.

On top of that I have a giant pile of books that I was supposed to read and I just haven't gotten around to so I'm hoping to do more reviews in the coming months. Lots of fantasy and new adult.

I'm still learning what things work for me as a writer and as a person - I always will be - and I'm so glad that I have you guys to support me. So thanks.

Here's to a never-ending flow of words.

This is totally how I plot stories. 'cept I'm not as hot as Stana Katic...or have a window with cool shutters like that...just me. And my wall.

Beckett leaned against the bar, holding her champagne flute in one hand, her eyes skimming the crowded ballroom looking for her boyfriend. She'd been casually – not so casually – looking for him for the last twenty minutes while she chatted with Mayor Weldon about the recent budget proposal for the NYPD asking her opinion on it. It's not that she didn't like the Mayor or enjoy his company – or needed to stay on his good side – but she hated these Charity Balls and the only reason she was here was because her currently MIA boyfriend had brought her along to keep the gaggles of fans away. It hadn't worked so far.

And speaking of gaggles, Beckett finally caught sight of her illustrious boyfriend on the other side of the ballroom leaning against a side table while a waitress stood in front of him, grinning and not-so-subtly showing off her cleavage.

Ever so calmly the detective placed her flute on the table behind her, straightened her dress and stormed straight across the floor. She barely took notice of the sea of dancers and chattering well-to-dos that parted for the red-faced woman in the shimmering navy dress, glaring at the man across the room. The only person who didn't notice was Castle who suddenly turned to her in shock when she stopped a few feet from him. "Richard Castle what the hell are you doing?" He opened his mouth to respond but before he could even squeak she took a step forward so all he could see was her and the fiery light in her eyes "I cannot believe you dragged me to this function, ditched me and now you're chatting up some blonde bimbo; no offense."

"Some taken." The waitress placed her hand on her hips but had wisely stepped out of Beckett's direct line of fire.

"Good." She didn't stop to even take a breath. "I came here for you but if you'd rather be with someone else then you can find your own goddamn way home." And just like that she was turning on her much-too-expensive heels and storming past the waves of people and out the main doors of the ballroom leaving Rick completely horrified and confused.

Before anyone could dare approach him to ask what the hell had just happened, he decided to investigate for himself and followed his girlfriend out the elegant double doors and into the dimly lit hallway. He moved to rush out the doors and into the chilled evening air when a hand grabbed him roughly from the side and he saw his life flash before his eyes…well, maybe just the evening.

It had taken all of his charm – and begging – to get Kate Beckett to agree to attend the charity ball with him. It was for a good cause, he knew that, but he still hated having to get dressed up and shake hands and kiss babies. The ego boost had lost its magic once he started working with the NYPD. Now it seemed more like a nuisance. But if Kate was there he would at least have someone to distract him from the boredom of talking to the stuffed shirts of upper Manhattan.

So after promising to treat her to an in-house spa day – like that was punishment to him – he finally agreed to pick her up at seven o'clock in a town car so they could arrive in style; so the perks of spending a night out on the town sometimes outweighed the bad. Sometimes.

At 6:53 Kate opened the door to find a dapper looking Rick in a suit and tie, looking just delectable.

Rick, for his part, found himself feeling very underdressed and completely turned on. He unabashedly looked his girlfriend up and down with an awestruck, hungry look in his eyes. There was no way he couldn't admire her beauty. "Wow," he breathed "you look…wow."

She rolled her eyes but the dark colour of her cheeks betrayed her. "Writer's mind at work there, Castle?"

He reached out to run his hand down her side, his fingertips brushing her hips and pulling her flush against him. "It's what you do to me."

She smirked, her hands falling to his biceps "it's not hard to make you speechless is it?"

"Not with you."

She let out a little sniff of laughter before patting his arm and slipping past him, smiling "come on, we've got to go." She pulled the door closed and stepped out of his embrace.

He grabbed her hand to stop her with a sweet, sincere look that melted her heart "You really do look beautiful, Kate."

She smiled slowly, squeezing his fingers and swinging them. "I know. We match." She tugged him along behind her until they reached the elevator and then they were shoulder to shoulder, sharing a secret smile because they were already imagining what they could do to each other after the party was over.

Outside, she hugged herself against the chill of the evening air while Rick rushed forward to pull her door open and usher her inside. He settled in beside her so their thighs were brushing and she rolled her eyes at his less than subtle move. So he was going to try and feel her up on the drive to a professional dinner? Well two could play at that game.

As the car drove off, Kate took a deep breath, ensuring her chest heaved in an exaggerated manner so Rick could see just how tight the bodice of her dress was. She felt his eyes on her in an instant but kept the smile off her face. Barely a block into the drive she decided to up the ante and heaved a loud sigh, letting her fingers fall from her thigh and onto his. He was staring directly at her but still, she kept the smile from creeping onto her face. Playfully, she squeezed his knee and slid her hand up higher on his leg, repeating the motion five times before he finally grabbed her hand and held it where it ways, dangerously high up on his thigh. This time she bit her lip and the corners turned up. As punishment, he removed her hand from his leg and placed it squarely – and forcefully – in her lap, making her gasp in surprise. She turned to glare at him but he had a matching smirk to the one she had worn just moments ago. So the game was on.

By the time the town car pulled up to the swanky hotel Beckett couldn’t remember, her dress was around her hips and his pants were practically on backwards. The driver, whom they now realized had seen the entire show, graciously gave them a moment to compose themselves before opening the door for the couple with a kind, if not awkward nod. Rick couldn't even look him in the eyes.

Inside, the ballroom was breathtakingly beautiful but Kate and Rick were still back in that car so they couldn't really enjoy the wonder of it. And apparently they both had the same idea because not moments after entering the ballroom, the couple were turning around and heading back out the door.

"Well there you two are." They froze in the same position, half way out the ballroom doors, panicked, desperate looks to match.

"Paula," Rick plastered a smile on his face in hopes of fooling his book agent into believing he wanted to be here "we were just looking for you."

The gorgeous brunette placed her perfectly manicured hands on her hips and raised a perfectly shaped eyebrow. "Really, because it looked like you two were trying to sneak off without doing your job."

"Paula," he tried to laugh, looping his arm through Kate's and squeezing tight; she was not getting out of this without him. "My job is to write. This is really the stuff that you and Gina and Sloan like to do."

She simply stared at him in disbelief before taking a step into his personal bubble, pointing her dangerously sharp fingernails at his face. "Don't you ever say stuff like that to me again okay?" He gulped and Kate physically jumped back. Not many people could intimidate her but when she was caught off guard like this, Paula scared the crap out of her. "Your job tonight is to shake hands and kiss babies and maybe I'll excuse the fact that 'Frozen Heat' was three weeks late okay?" She patted his cheek but turned to glare at the detective like she knew exactly why his last manuscript was so late. She wasn't wrong – which was probably why she blushed even harder when she looked away. "And you are going to stay longer than half an hour alright? Tonight is the first night in months that you've made a public appearance; please make it a lasting one?" She waved them goodbye as though they were the best of friends and she hadn't just – in her own way – threatened them severely, clicking down the marble steps that led into the grand ballroom.

Inside were people buzzing around, chattering and clinking champagne glasses while a small orchestra played in the corner unappreciated. Near them, an older married couple were slow dancing to their music which made up for the rest of the room in the band's mind. Now in a somewhat less horny state of mind, Kate took a moment to breathe in her surroundings and the utter pretentiousness in the air was enough to make her gag. "Is the room filled with enough perfume and cologne?" She whispered behind her partner's ear. He snickered in return and pulled her closer to his side as they ventured down the steps into hell.

As Rick reached out for two flutes, Kate subtly slid her hand over to grab his ass, making him jump and nearly spill the drinks. Okay so maybe she was still pretty horny. And the less time they were here, the more time they had alone – win-win for everyone. The moment the waiter had walked away with a concerned and uncomfortable expression, Rick returned the favor by cupping his girlfriend's butt as he pulled her flush against his side. She wanted to claim him? He could claim her right back – which was good because there was some shifty guy in the corner that he just knew was ogling Kate. "You know just because everyone knows we're together now doesn't mean you get to grope me in public." He was practically nibbling on her earlobe. "Unless you want to get yourself arrested for public indecency." She caught herself just before she let out the giggle that had bubbled in her chest and she managed to push him away without anyone seeing.

"Rick," she warned, masking it behind a sip of what would not be her last drink of the night.

"But I hate these events." He whined and she rolled her eyes at his childishness, refusing to agree with him.

"Just think," she smirked "as soon as we're done here we can go home."

She almost laughed out loud at the way his face visibly brightened and then darkened to a leer "and what will happen when we get home?"

Oh he was going to play that card? Well, she'd hate to leave him hanging. She leaned over breathed in his ear the very slow, dirty things she was planning to do to certain parts of his anatomy while we was wearing just that navy tie. When she pulled back, the flush had spread to her chest where she felt that familiar tighten of arousal and Rick was glad he hadn't taken a sip; with the way he was breathing and coughing it could have been dangerous.

He took a moment before he leaned over in her ear, his breath heavy and hot against her skin, sending deliciously cold shivers down her spine "how long did we have to stay here?"

She did laugh at that, glad their minds were in the same place. "She said more than thirty minutes." Suddenly Rick stiffened and released his hold of her waist, leaving the entire side of her body cool and missing his enveloping heat even more. "Where are you going?"

He downed the last of his champagne and passed it to a waiter who happened to be nearby. "I'm going to find the most boring person in the room to see if they can talk my ear off for thirty-one minutes.” She would have scoffed or scolded him if she suddenly wasn't filled with the image of nibbling on his ear and moving lower down while she slowly stripped him so she could get a real grip on those biceps of his. And suddenly it didn't matter that they were in a public place and whatever happened tonight would be documented by the tabloids, she just needed to have wild, passionate sex with her boyfriend because god damn it he looked absolutely delectable in his suit.

"I'll go with you." The words had just left her lips when she heard her name from behind and she spun to come face to face with Mayor Weldon. Just great. She briefly wondered if it would be rude to tell the Mayor to excuse her so she could jump her boyfriend's bones but when she looked back at the boy in question he was already headed across the ballroom. Even better. The coward.

Twenty minutes of just budget talks and she was done with the Mayor no matter what he said. Of course that was followed by eleven minutes of just searching for her boyfriend who seemed to be nowhere in the ballroom. She had spent the last twenty minutes entertaining herself by taking everything the mayor said as a sexual innuendo and it only served to make her horny as hell and make the poor mayor think there was something wrong with her. Finally, finally she spotted him and instantly she found a way out.

After she stormed out of the room, leaving an entire ballroom shell-shocked, she really hoped it was Rick who followed her out to do damage control. They didn't need it of course – she trusted him – but it would give them an excuse to get away. She couldn't wait for them to get home anymore and if he ran out those front steps, he'd probably head home looking for her so she swiftly grabbed him – choosing not to comment on the unmanly squeak he'd elicited – and pulled him into the nearest unlocked door: an empty conference room at the end of the hallway with a sign that read 'reserved for tomorrow' – or something equally as inviting.

The instant she released him, shoving him against a white-clothed table, his eyes widened in panic. "Kate, it wasn't what it looked like I swear. We were just talking. I had just finished talking to that old couple near the orchestra and at first I thought they were boring but they turned out to be sort of interesting with the their time stories and I was starting to like them so I ditched them and I had just stepped over to talk to her when… you…" his voice trailed off as he watched Kate pull the zipper off her dress and let the silk material slip down her arms leaving her bare except for a thin piece of lace keeping her decent...well, decent was a loosely used term.

She pulled her tongue between her teeth as she blushed at his indecent look making her flush even more. "That’s always effective in shutting you up. Now," she stalked towards him until he was completely against the back of the table, all pleasure and no business. "I believe I have a promise to fulfill."

Kate tilted her head to just the right angle when he pulled her back to standing. "What happened to the 'when we get home' part?"

The pointed look she gave him was enough to shut him up. "Do you really want to wait?"

Paula came stalking down the hallway as the couple exited the conference room, smoothing dresses and dress shirts looking satisfied and frazzled. “Where the hell have you two been? I’ve got a waitress complaining to me about being insulted by a guest and several reporters asking if you two are going to get a divorce.” She threw her hands up. “I didn’t even know you two were married.”

“We’re not.” They answered in unison.

The agent just fell into her hip. “Sure. So are you two going to join the party and clear this up? Please?”

Rick’s arm came around his girlfriend’s waist. “Yes Paula, we’ll stay for a little longer.”

The raven-haired diva shook her head. “Of all the writers I’ve ever worked with, Ricky, you are by far the biggest handful I’ve ever handled.” Both the detective and her writer coughed in shock but the agent had already turned back to the party.

Alone again, Rick bumped Kate’s hip playfully. “What do you say; a few dances and then we’ll go home?”

She smirked before bumping him back. “Sure. A few dances. Assure the masses that we’re not breaking up.” Arm in arm, they stepped back into the ballroom where a handful of eyes watched them walk down the stairs with casual, reassuring smiles. From the corner near the tired orchestra, the elderly couple winked at the pair, making Rick blush harder than Kate. “I suppose we should also let everyone know that we’re not getting a divorce.” She smiled as she kissed his cheek, convincing the last pair of eyes that there was nothing else to be seen.

They stopped at the edge of the dance floor, observing the crowds, carefully avoiding maintaining eye contact with anyone lest they attempt to strike up polite conversation. "Dance with me." He startled when she offered her hand to him but he just stared at it. "Please? We did say we would stay to dance." He took it then with a soft smile, letting her lead him out to the open dance floor and pulling her close. The passion that had bubbled over all evening was left simmering; soft touches and sweet whispers replacing thrusts and growls.

It felt like a different time, a different place – especially when a familiar tune began to serenade them and Rick began to sing along softly. "I can't give you anything but love, baby." They fell into step instantly, their muscles doing the work of pulling each other close and breathing each other in while their minds raced a mile a minute in opposite directions. Rick was writing out the scene between two young lovers content in the stillness of this one moment amongst the chaos of the world. Kate was running down the road of “could be”s and “one day”s leaving this moment in the dust.

"Rick?" He looked down at her expectantly only to find apprehension in her eyes like this whole situation was making her completely uncomfortable. The urge to wrap her tighter in his arms surged through him but he resisted, waiting for this nervous Kate Beckett, this soft Kate Beckett, to make her move – even if she looked positively lost and unsure in that adorable puppy way. "Do you ever wander what it’d be like if we were normal?”

“What do you mean?”

“I mean,” she wasn’t looking at him; she was searching the air around him for the right words. Definitely adorable but he tried not to smile. “what it be like if we could get married and” she dipped her head “do dirty things to each other” he smiled “and just dance like this and not worry that this is going to end up on Page Six. Or that there’s some psycho killer watching us right now.”

So that’s what this was about. He pulled her closer so their words were just for them. “Sometimes I think it would be easier. But then I think, what you do is incredible. Extraordinary, even,” her eye roll turned to a sweet smile. “and I am very blessed. I get to do something I love and be with the people I love.” It was so easy to kiss her cheek and forget the world. “And if that means I have to watch what I do and say in public then I’ll take it. So long as we both get to keep doing what we do.”

He turned her out and she followed his lead effortlessly, her mind still racing with ifs and buts. “But what if we didn’t have to?” She cupped his shoulder blade, hugging him tightly. “What if we both worked nine to five and we didn’t have to attend charity balls or late night body drops. What if”

“What if,” he dipped her, bringing her back in for a kiss on the nose “what if we were normal? We’re just two people out for a night on the town, and we’re dancing. Right now.”

She closed her eyes as they swayed to the slow rhythm of the band behind them. “Okay.” A tired smile graced her lips as she opened her hazel eyes, watching his loving expression. “My parents used to do this. Dance. Every anniversary. They never went out, they just stayed home in their pyjamas as soon as they got home from work. They would make dinner together – though mom did most of the cooking part – and then they would turn on some old records and just dance. When I was little I used to stay up late and sit on the stairs and watch them.” She smiled when she looked away, the intent of his eyes a little too much for her memories. “When I got older I always made sure I was out that night so they would have the whole place to themselves. They were so in love.” Her voice dropped so low he barely heard her. “So normal.”

“Hey,” she looked up automatically. “If you are imagining a scenario where we turn out like our parents then I can assure you – with great hope – that neither of us will be exactly like our predecessors. Can you imagine if I had turned out like my mother?”

“Well you’re both kind of drama queens.” She bit her lip to keep from smiling too hard.

“Hey now I’m trying to be comforting.”

“Sorry.” She laughed and he swore he heard bells. When had he turned into such a sap? “Continue.”

“We can still be in love and pretend to be normal and dance in the living room and make dinner – and you know I can cook – and that’s great. But I would never trade what we have for what we could have. We never would have met if I weren’t a writer and you weren’t a cop.”

“You say that like it’s a bad thing.” He gaped when she winked at him, the smile finally gracing her lips that he’d been waiting for all evening.

“You’re snippy tonight.”

“Yeah well I didn’t get to finish what I started earlier.”

One, two, three, dip, he pulled her tighter when she came back to him. “See, normal people don’t get to do stuff like that in the conference rooms of swanky hotels.”

“They don’t?” She looked so disappointed that he was so tempted to kiss away the twinkle in her eyes. “Well then I guess being normal isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.”

“Here’s to being… abnormal.” They stopped dancing even though the song had ended long before.

Her melodious laughter filled the room. “Here, here.” She brought her lips to his in a sweet – public-friendly – kiss. “Now, I think I need to go and apologize to the waitress.” She pulled out of his arms but he tugged her hand and followed her.

“You were really rude to her.”

She squeezed his hand too hard and he jumped but kept pace. “You’re going to apologize, too.”

“What for?”

“For leaving the invigorating conversation that you so rudely left earlier.”

He caught up to her ear and growled low, rumbling through her chest. “Oh you are so getting it when we get home.”

“I’d better."

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