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How the Story Ends - 1/1 - Castle Fanfic

Title: How the Story Ends
Author: shirleyann66
Fandom:  Castle
Summary: Castle never reads the ending of a book first.  He doesn’t like skipping over everything that comes before because he knows the journey is just as, or more, important than the ending.  But sometimes he isn’t skipping anything; it’s just that sometimes, he knows how the story ends.
Relationship(s)/Characters: Castle/Beckett
Word Count: 663
Rating: PG-13
Warnings: Angst.  Like whoa.
Spoilers:  Set after The Squab and the Quail.  Slight references to events and characters throughout the series but nothing too major...I hope.  :)
Disclaimers: I've only just discovered Castle, so - yeah.  I obviously don't own the show, the characters, the books, the actors or anything else related to the show, although I am cursing Nathan Fillion's way too charming persona because I need another obsession fandom like a fish needs a bicycle.  :P  *cough* This fic is for entertainment and non-profit use only.

~~~~~~

Castle never reads the ending of a book first.  He doesn’t like skipping over everything that comes before because he knows the journey is just as, or more, important than the ending.  But sometimes he isn’t skipping anything; it’s just that sometimes, he knows how the story ends.

He stares out at the rain; watches the water stream down the glass, and listens to the patter of drops against the pane.  It’s a soothing sound, a gentle counterpoint to Beckett’s soft, sleeping breaths behind him.  It suits his mood, and his writer’s soul appreciates the symbolism even as he admits it’s a little cliché.

He breathes deeply and thinks of the events of the last few days.  He thinks of Eric Vaughn and Beckett’s discontent, and despite his best efforts, his almost desperate desire to hold on to and cherish the moment, he can’t help but think of how this story ends.

He wishes he could rewrite it.  Beckett’s different and he knows it.  He knows her in ways he’s never known anyone before.  He’s bound to her through so many experiences he has never - will never - share with anyone else:  holding hands while facing a dirty bomb; drowning in a car; freezing to death in each other’s arms.  Everything he experiences with her, everything he learns about her, just makes him love her more.  And that worries him because he’s been here before, and he knows how the story ends.

He wishes he could rewrite it so she’s his and he’s hers and they spend the rest of their lives together.  He closes his eyes, and he can see her:  old, beautiful, happy and content with her life, her family and her choices.  But no matter how hard he tries, he can’t see himself beside her.  Not because he doesn’t want it - God, he wants it so badly - but because sooner or later, she’s going to realize he’s not enough:  not good enough, not strong enough, not smart enough, not...enough.  She’s different, but he isn’t, and there’s just no story he can imagine with him in it that changes that one central fact:  he’s simply not enough.

He watches the rain slide down the glass, and listens as Beckett shifts and sighs in her sleep.

His mother sent him away.  His father never came back.  With Alexis, he worries he came up short against the shadow cast by Meredith’s absence.  Alexis is a great kid, and she says it didn’t matter, but he can’t completely quiet his lingering doubts.  She is who she is in spite of him, he suspects, not because of him.  She’ll leave him behind, eventually, for a life and a family of her own, but that, at least, is only as it should be.

Everyone leaves him.  Eventually.  Kyra; Meredith; Gina.  Sophia hadn’t wanted him once she had him, and now he honestly doesn’t know if she’d ever truly wanted him at all, or if she’d only used him (like Ellie Monroe, Damian Westlake, Natalie Rhodes, others) for obscure purposes of her own.

He turns and looks at Beckett’s sleeping form.  His heart squeezes, and he knows that when she leaves, he’ll never get over her.

But that pain is in some hopefully distant future.  For now, for this moment, she’s here, in his life, in his bed, and he’ll love her to the best of his ability, as openly, completely and honestly as he can, like he always does.  He’ll try to be what she wants, he’ll try to make her happy, and he’ll try to convince her to stay.  And when the time comes, when she finally leaves, he’ll let her go and pick up his pieces (again).

He slips into bed and stares up at the dark.  He catches his breath as Beckett rolls over and snuggles against him with another soft sigh.  He hugs her closer and shuts his eyes, and tries not to think about how the story ends.

Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
xdawnfirex
May. 1st, 2013 04:51 pm (UTC)
Oh, ouch. That hurt me in my heart place. Well done.
shirleyann66
May. 3rd, 2013 06:51 pm (UTC)
Aw - thank you! (sorry about hurting you in the heart place, though!)
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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"All right," said Susan. "I'm not stupid. You're saying humans need...fantasies to make life bearable."

REALLY? AS IF IT WAS SOME KIND OF PINK PILL? NO. HUMANS NEED FANTASY TO BE HUMAN. TO BE THE PLACE WHERE THE FALLING ANGEL MEETS THE RISING APE.

"Tooth fairies? Hogfathers? Little --"

YES. AS PRACTICE. YOU HAVE TO START OUT LEARNING TO BELIEVE THE LITTLE LIES.

"So we can believe the big ones?"

YES. JUSTICE. MERCY. DUTY. THAT SORT OF THING.

-- Susan and Death in Hogfather by Terry Pratchett

---------------------

"And no practical definition of freedom would be complete without the freedom to take the consequences. Indeed, it is the freedom upon which all the others are based."

-- Lord Vetinari in Going Postal by Terry Pratchett

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They thought the Library was a dangerous place because of all the magical books, which was true enough, but what made it really one of the most dangerous places there could ever be was the simple fact that it was a library.

-- Guards! Guards! by Terry Pratchett

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As a wizard, it was something that Ponder had only before encountered in acorns: a tiny soundless voice which said, yes, I am but a small, green, simple object - but I dream about forests.

-- Interesting Times by Terry Pratchett

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In the 24th century, there will be no hunger. There will be no greed. And every child will know how to read.

-- Gene Roddenberry, as repeated by Jonathan Frakes in the documentary How William Shatner Changed the World

---------------------

We've got two lives, one we're given and the other one we make
And the world won't stop, and actions speak louder
Listen to your heart, and what your heart might say
Everything we got, we got the hard way.

-- Mary Chapin Carpenter, The Hard Way from the album Come On, Come On

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Cause when they own the information, oh
They can bend it all they want.

-- John Mayer, Waiting on the World to Change from the album Continuum

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Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says, "I'll try again tomorrow."

-- Mary Anne Radmacher, as seen in Uncle John's Bathroom Reader Tales to Inspire

---------------------

I never loved the soldier
Until there was a war.
Or thought about tomorrow
'til my baby hit the floor.
I only talk to God
When somebody's about to die.
I never cherished freedom
Freedom never cries.

-- Five for Fighting, Freedom Never Cries from the album Two Lights

---------------------

It may sound absurd: but don't be naive
Even heroes have the right to bleed
I may be disturbed: but won't you concede
Even heroes have the right to dream

-- Five for Fighting, Superman (It's Not Easy) from the album American Town

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Had a dream last night took a time travellin' ride
Back to my childhood where those monsters reside
They snack on innocence and dine on self-esteem
But I like to be in touch with what makes me scream
Vampires, mummies and the Holy Ghost
These are the things that terrify me the most.
No alien, psychopath or MTV host
Scares me like vampires,mummies and the Holy Ghost.

-- Jimmy Buffett, Vampires, Mummies and the Holy Ghost from the album Fruitcakes

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"I want to believe that... the dead are not lost to us. That they speak to us... as part of something greater than us - greater than any alien force. And if you and I are powerless now, I want to believe that if we listen, to what's speaking, it can give us the power to save ourselves."

-- Fox Mulder, The X-Files from the episode The Truth, pt. 2

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