Title: Shared Secrets
Characters/Pairings: Castle/Beckett, Dee/Ryo.
Setting: After the manga for FAKE and during Season 5 for Castle.
Summary: Castle and Beckett team up with two New York detectives from another precinct to solve a case.
Word Count: 1863
Written For: Challenge 135: Amnesty at fan_flashworks, using Challenge #23: Secrets
Disclaimer: I don’t own FAKE, Castle, or any of the characters. FAKE belongs to the wonderful Sanami Matoh. Castle belongs to its creators.
“So who are they?” Castle eyed the two men Beckett had been talking to suspiciously.
“Detectives Laytner and Maclean, out of the 27th Precinct,” Beckett replied. “Seems we’re working different ends of the same case, so we’re gonna pool our resources and intel. Maybe between us we’ll finally get a lead that goes somewhere.”
Castle grunted. “Huh. That’ll be fun.” He’d seen the way the good looking black haired guy had been flirting with Beckett and he didn’t like it.
“Lighten up, Castle, we could use the help. We’re not exactly making any progress by ourselves.”
”That guy was hitting on you,” Castle hissed, throwing the pair another venomous glance. Keeping their relationship a secret from the people they worked with was proving harder, not to mention a lot less fun, than he’d expected.
“So what? It’s not like he was getting anywhere.” Beckett kept her voice low to avoid being overheard by any of the other police personnel milling around the crime scene. “Besides, he’s not my type, and even if he was, I’m already spoken for.”
“So you’re saying you’re not even a little interested? I mean he’s a very attractive guy. Even I can see that.”
Beckett shook her head. “Looks aren’t everything. He knows he’s good looking, and he’s too full of himself; that’s a real turn-off.”
“Good to know. Okay, guess I‘d better go introduce myself. Don’t worry, I’ll be polite,” he added quickly, seeing the look on Beckett’s face. “But it doesn’t mean I have to like them.”
“Fine. Just don’t piss them off. I mean it, Castle, we need what they know. It’ll save us time and legwork, not to mention giving us a better chance of catching this scumbag before he kills someone else.”
“I know. Relax, you know how charming I can be.”
“Maybe that’s what worries me,” Beckett muttered to herself as her partner/boyfriend walked away.
It was a tough case; the four detectives were after a serial killer who’d already struck four times that they knew of in different parts of the city over the course of a week. They weren’t short of leads, but chasing them down took time, and most didn’t add anything to what they’d already pieced together.
Despite initial impressions, Castle found that both detectives from the 27th were good at their jobs and handled everything professionally, even if Detective Laytner was a bit of a hothead. Detective Maclean was more level-headed and could be counted on to curb his partner’s excesses, more than once by means of a quick swat over the head with anything that happened to be handy, much to Castle’s amusement. The aggrieved expression on Laytner’s face was a picture, but he took the chastisement better than Castle would have expected, muttering under his breath and glaring at his partner, but not retaliating. He even apologised a couple of times.
Even more surprising was how well the four of them worked together, whether brainstorming ideas, interviewing possible witnesses, or following leads. When they finally caught the killer a few days later, Castle was actually a little disappointed that it was over so quickly. Working with the other two detectives had been both fun and inspiring, giving him some good ideas for his next book.
“One more scumbag off the streets,” Dee Laytner said in a satisfied tone. “The people of New York can sleep a little easier, at least until the next one comes along. We did good.”
“We did,” Castle agreed, “and we couldn’t have done it without you guys. Thanks for your help, we owe you one.”
“We were just doing our jobs,” Maclean said simply, his natural modesty coming to the fore.
“Nevertheless, Castle’s right. Without your help we might still be running in circles and that bastard might still be out there, so thank you,” Beckett smiled.
“Any time, always happy to be of assistance,” Laytner replied, winking at Beckett.
“So, I guess that’s it.” Castle shoved his hands in his pockets, hunching his shoulders a little against the chill in the air.
“Looks that way. Well, don’t know about anyone else, but I’m starving. Hey, we’re all off duty now, so why don’t the four of us go get a bite to eat? There’s this great little restaurant down by the river. Whaddaya say? My treat.” Laytner looked around at the others enquiringly.
“I could eat.” Castle turned to his partner. “Beckett?”
“Sounds good, count me in. C’mon, Castle; we’ll take my car and follow you guys.”
Dinner was excellent, except that with the case solved, Laytner was hitting on Beckett again. Even knowing that Beckett wasn’t interested didn’t quite put Castle’s mind at ease; the guy was persistent. As they walked back to their respective cars after a very enjoyable meal, Laytner striding ahead and monopolising Beckett, Randy Maclean fell in beside Castle, who was staring moodily at the backs of the two people ahead of him.
“Dee flirts a lot, but that’s all. You don’t have anything to worry about.”
Castle glanced at the other man. “I’m not worried. Why would I be worried?”
Maclean looked at him, smiling slightly. “I’m a detective; despite what Dee thinks, I do notice some things. Besides, I know what it’s like having to keep your relationship with your partner secret from the people you work with. It’s no fun watching other people hit on them and knowing you can’t say or do anything about it without giving yourself away.”
“You’ve dated a co-worker? How did that work out?”
Maclean laughed. “Let’s just say, if Beckett was flirting with me, there’d be steam coming out of Dee’s ears. He gets really jealous.”
Castle stopped dead. “Wait a minute, back up. You’re saying you two are… a couple?”
“I am, but Dee’s bi. Does that bother you?”
“What? No! Of course not! I just… I’d never have guessed. If you don’t mind me asking, how long have you two been together?”
“We’ve worked together for five years, been lovers for almost three.”
“Huh.” Castle let that sink in for a moment. Three years was a long time to keep something like that a secret. Would he and Beckett have to hide their relationship for that long? Would they even be able to? “And no one you work with knows? You’ve managed to keep anyone from finding out?”
“So far. I think the Chief suspects, but Dee and I work well together, we make a good team, so I guess he turns a blind eye because he doesn’t want to split us up. Doesn’t mean that we don’t still worry all the time that someone will find out.”
“Well, I promise I won’t breathe a word of this conversation to anyone; my lips are sealed. And I hope I can count on your discretion too.”
“You have my word. I’m good at keeping things to myself; I’ve had a lot of practice.” Maclean smiled wryly.
Before either of them could say anything else, they were interrupted by Laytner and Beckett, who’d backtracked to find their missing partners.
“Yo, Ryo! Were we walkin’ too fast for ya? Or were ya givin’ me some space while I worked my charms on the lovely Kate?” Dee was smirking.
Ryo shook his head. “Neither. Enough with the flirting, Dee, you may as well give it up; Castle knows.”
Dee frowned. “What? How’d he find out?”
“I told him.” Ryo shrugged casually.
“Why’d you go and do that, dumbass?”
“Because he was about ready to take a swing at you over Detective Beckett.”
“I can take care of myself in a fight.”
“I know. It wasn’t you I was worried about; you fight dirty, and I don’t think Kate would be too impressed if you damaged her boyfriend.”
“Wait a minute; how did you know about us? Did someone tell you?” Beckett was instantly on guard.
“As far as I know, no one else knows, but it wasn’t hard to figure out. Ever since we met, Castle’s been watching Dee hitting on you, giving him the same kind of death glares Dee gives anyone he catches hitting on me. Our partners are a lot alike in some respects. I think they both have a pretty big jealous streak.”
“Oh, and you don’t?” Dee laughed. “I’ve seen you when JJ’s been jumpin’ all over me. Man, if looks could kill, he’d be toast.”
Beckett looked at Dee, confused. The brash detective’s entire demeanour had changed. Gone was the too wide smirk, the cocky attitude and the posturing. Somehow he looked younger, his smile softer and more genuine.
“I seem to be missing something… Anyone care to fill me in?”
“Apparently out friends here are in the same situation we’re in,” Castle explained, without really explaining anything.
“We have more in common than just our jobs; we all like our partners a whole lot more than is allowed under police department regulations,” Ryo added.
Dee moved over beside his partner, draping an arm around Ryo’s shoulders. “I’m not sure how I feel about Ryo giving our secret away, but I’m glad I can drop the charade. It was a lot easier to keep up the act of being nothing more than partners while we were working. All evening I’ve felt like we were on a double date and I was stuck with the wrong person; it’s been sheer hell. No offence, Kate, you’re a seriously hot babe and I do have a reputation to maintain, but I’ve already got everything I’ll ever want right here.”
“Dee!” Ryo blushed slightly.
“What? It’s true; I’m yours, body and soul, and if you haven’t got that by now then you’re even more of an airhead than I thought!”
Beckett blinked at the pair. “You two are gay?” If anything, she sounded even more surprised than Castle had earlier.
“I’m bi, dammit!” Dee complained. “Why doesn’t anyone ever get that right?”
Ryo snickered, earning a mock glare from his lover.
“What’s so funny?”
Dee pouted, making Ryo laugh harder. “No one takes me seriously.”
“He’s like Jekyll and Hyde. If Hyde was being played by Casanova,” Castle whispered to Beckett, making her giggle.
“Humpf.” Dee glared mutinously at the others. “So glad you’re all having such a good time at my expense. Have you already forgotten who paid for dinner?”
“I did,” Ryo said, “because you left your wallet in your desk again.”
“Hey! I said I’d pay you back!”
“I’ve had a great time tonight, we should do this again,” Castle butted in before an argument could start. “How about next week? My place, I’ll cook.”
“Castle’s a good cook,” Beckett assured them. “I’ve had dinner at his place a few times.”
“Ryo’s a great cook too, maybe the two of you could take turns.”
Ryo nodded. “I’d like that.”
Busily making future dinner plans, the two couples set off towards the parking lot once more. Castle smiled to himself. Maybe he could talk Dee and Ryo into letting him do a ride along with them sometime. All in the name of research of course. He had a feeling he could get some very interesting stories from them.