Author's Note: hazel_eyes_86, if you want this, it's yours; if this doesn't strike your fancy, just say so.. not a problem.
Title: Not in Stone.
Characters: Ryan, Castle, Beckett,
movie mentions: Manequin(sp), Night at the Museum, Sleeping Beauty, Night at the Museum II.
Set: the day before the s1 finale.
Summary: Something is very very wrong with Detective Beckett. Or with what's become of her.
Not In Stone
Richard Castle came to work looking into the paper bag he'd brought with him; as he entered the room, "Okay, I know donuts are standard fare, but nobody's ever told me just what kind I should be getting, so I -" looked up, and froze. "Oh."
Ryan and Esposito were both each at their respective desks, hard at work, so accustomed to Castle's movements that they barely even glanced up to acknowledge his entry.
Beckett, on the other hand, didn't move at all. There was, in Castle's mind, something distinctly - not odd, more of off about her.
Her eyes were closed and she didn't seem to be working at all.
Sleeping? Castle wondered. "I always knew she was a princess," Castle said. Then, peering at her, "Wax?" he asked, looking at the flesh-and-blood detectives at their desks.
Ryan said, "It happens."
"But that's not possible," Castle said.
"Why not?" Ryan asked, not looking up from the reports the sarge had tasked him with looking over.
"Because Detective Beckett is -"
"When's she ever said a thing about her childhood, eh Castle?" Esposito asked.
"You - do have a point," Castle conceeded. "But its not possible."
Looking over at his partner, Ryan asked, "Lincoln or Twain?"
"You mean the whole 'whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth,' it's neither, it's Doyle."
"No, the 'life is stranger than fiction because fiction is required to make sense.'"
Castle mentally kicked himself for not having seen that one coming. So, in lieu of doing that, he took a step towards the wax Beckett.
"What're you doing?" Ryan asked, thinking, Please, God, tell me he's not about to do what it looks like he's about to do, because it looked like Castle was about to kiss the wax detective.
"I'm gonna wake her up."
"She ain't Sleepin' Beauty."
"Well I beg to differ on that. And in any rate, we'll soon see if there's any truth to this folk remedy."
Castle kissed her.
"Hm, no change," he said once he pulled away. "Guess you were right," and turned and headed for the door.
"Where you going?" Esposito asked.
"Museum," Castle called back.
"There's a tablet I need to take a gander at."
Ryan and Esposito looked at one another, then shrugged and went back to work.
Inside her hiding place, Detective Beckett - the real one - had watched all of this, and was about to come back out to her desk when -
"Don't leave now, Detective," Castle said, having arrived behind her without her hearing anything move. "This' just getting interesting. Though," as he came perilously close to resting his chin on her shoulder, "I must confess that your colleagues' disinterest was rather convincing."
"How did -?" she started to ask, then stopped herself. This is Richard Castle, she reminded herself.
"Seriously now, did you really think that, after being here this long, that I wouldn't have gotten ahold of the floor plans to this building, Detective Beckett?"
"Planning on having Nikki Heat kill someone in the emergency exits, Castle?"
"Now there's a thought...though I was planning more of Nikki having an illicit and steamy meet-up with her beau in the boiler room. Get it?" he smiled.
"Ow!" Castle shouted in a nasal voice as Becket shoved the door open behind her as she walked backwards out of the hiding place.
"It almost worked," Beckett told her partners.
"My dad used to say something about horse shoes and hand grenades," Esposito remarked, and the others nodded; well, except for Castle, whose nose was being firmly gripped between the index and middle fingers of Kate Beckett's right hand.
"Ow! Ow! Ow! Ow, just take my nose and be done with it, woman!"
Kate raised her other hand, palm and fingers flat, and was about to slap them down on the back of her first hand to pretend-steal his nose, when -
"Let him go," her boss said, having just arrived.
"Sir -" Beckett said.
"I don't doubt that he's fully earned whatever you were about to dish out to him, but not right now." Soto voice, "I'd be too good a witness."
Beckett nodded and let Castle go. "Thank you!" he said.