5x11 Transcript

Transcribed by:
McManda
CASTLE
EPISODE 5x11
"Under The Influence"


INT – REGINA CANE’S HOUSE

REGINA CANE walks down the stairs of her house. She’s throwing a party and there’s tons of press everywhere holding microphones and cameras.

REPORTER
Regina, your new album Fatal Impact drops next week. What can you tell us about it?

REGINA CANE
It’s about love, heartbreak, and revenge. It’s my best album yet.

REPORTER
Oh my God, it’s Josie Lang!

Everyone rushes past REGINA. JOSIE LANG is much more exciting for them. REGINA glares and walks over to her publicist.

REGINA
What the hell is Josie Lang doing at my release party?

PUBLICIST
Her album’s out next week, too. Having both of you here gets us more press.

REGINA
More press for who? Me or her?

JOSIE
Regina! Thank you for the invite. You know, you’re the reason I’m a pop star. I’ve been a fan ever since I was in grade school.

REGINA has to swallow her anger and hide it under her outwardly pleasant exterior. She grabs her PUBLICIST and they leave JOSIE, walking into the next room where DJ BEAT is spinning. DJ BEAT watches a hooded figure walk out of the room, then bends down to grab an USB drive preloaded with a playlist to cover for her when she grabs her bag and leaves after him.

EXT – NEW YORK CITY STREET

KATE BECKETT
That is ridiculous. I do not lose a turn.

RICHARD CASTLE
Are you kidding? No, that’s the rules. You absolutely lose your turn. Ask him. Esposito!

KATE BECKETT and RICHARD CASTLE have come to the crime scene together.

JAVIER ESPOSITO
Ask me what?

CASTLE
In a relationship, if you choose a movie and you choose very, very poorly, do you lose your turn?

ESPOSITO
How poorly?

BECKETT
Valentine’s Day.

ESPOSITO
You should lose two turns.

He fist bumps CASTLE.

BECKETT
What?

ESPOSITO
Yeah, I’m just saying.

She hits him gently on the shoulder in annoyance.

CASTLE
Those are the rules.

ESPOSITO
Those are the rules.

BECKETT
That’s ridiculous.

EXT – NEW YORK CITY STREET

ESPOSITO
So, the body was found in this dumpster over here by a homeless dude that was looking for cans. It was wrapped up in this tarp.

CASTLE and BECKETT look at the body.

BECKETT
Cause?

LANIE PARISH
GSWs. Near as I can tell, she was shot at close range. Minimal blood seepage and lack of spatter in the area suggest she was killed elsewhere then dumped here.

CASTLE
So someone was hoping she’d catch a ride with the morning haul. Disappear into some landfill.

BECKETT
Any idea who she is?

KEVIN RYAN
Well, according to her ID her name is Holly Rhodes. But her business card has her listed as DJ Beat. Called the number and her booking agent said she was DJ’ing an album launch party in SoHo last night for pop star Regina Cane.

ESPOSITO
What? Oh, dude … you remember that music video where she was dressed up as a sexy little Girl Scout? I don’t care what those cookies cost, I would sell my left –

He stops suddenly at LANIE’S glare.

RYAN
Anyway, she was booked at the party until 1AM.

LANIE
1AM?

RYAN
Yeah, why?

LANIE
I’m placing the time of death between 11 and midnight.

CASTLE
So whatever happened, happened at that party.

BECKETT sees some numbers written on her hand.

BECKETT
This ink looks fresh.

ESPOSITO
It’s an unlisted number. I got a call in to the phone company.

BECKETT
All right, you guys set up a canvass for anyone who saw the body dump. Castle and I’ll head down to SoHo, see what happened last night.

INT – REGINA CANE’S HOUSE

A man groans and rolls over in front of the door. He’s still feeling the effects of his hangover. CASTLE and BECKETT push past him and walk into the house.

BECKETT
Oh-kay. Good morning.

CASTLE laughs.

CASTLE
Killer party.

BECKETT
Well, it looks like Regina went all out to promote her new album.

CASTLE
I remember when Alexis used to play her big hit "Call Me Crazy" over and over again. Drove me crazy. Of course, it was no Valentine’s Day.

Another man walks drowsily into the hall.

BECKETT
(flashes her badge) Excuse me, NYPD. Where’s the host?

CASTLE
Forget the host, where’s your pants? (he chuckles) Am I right? (seriously) No, I’ve been there. Check by the pool.

INT – REGINA CANE’S BEDROOM

REGINA KING
Wait, you’re NY what now?

She lifts her sleep mask to look at them.

BECKETT
PD. As in … a detective. We’re here about Holly Rhodes.

REGINA
(sighs) Who’s Holly Rhodes?

CASTLE
DJ Beat? She was your DJ for your party.

REGINA sits up, more alert. She accepts some painkillers from an assistant.

REGINA
Oh. That skank. That b*itch almost ruined my entire party. When I left to get ready for my performance she was supposed to stay and get the crowd pumped. Instead, the music stopped and she was gone.

BECKETT watches skeptically as REGINA’S ASSISTANT pours a glass of champagne.

REGINA
She didn’t even come back to get her equipment.

REGINA takes the champagne and uses it to wash down the painkillers.

BECKETT
So you’re saying that she left early?

REGINA
Yeah. Around 11 after jacking in a playlist. I didn’t pay for a playlist. If you see her, tell her I want my money back.

CASTLE
That might be a little tough, seeing as she’s dead. She was killed just after leaving your party.

REGINA
Great. Now I feel bad for complaining.

REGINA certainly doesn’t look like she feels bad.

BECKETT
Did you notice any unusual behavior? Was she having problems with any of your other guests?

REGINA
No. But then again, I was busy making my rounds.

BECKETT
Right. Well, I’ll need a guest list along with the names of everyone that was working … last … night.

She trails off when REGINA replaces her sleep mask and leans back in her bed.

REGINA
No problem. I’ll have my publicist send it right over.

CASTLE and BECKETT exchange a look.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

RYAN
So I spoke with several of the other party guests and they confirm Regina’s story. Apparently Holly just suddenly left.

CASTLE
In the middle of her set? Why?

BECKETT
Well, we answer that, we’ll find out why she was killed. Anyone see where she went?

RYAN
No, and there’s no security cameras. I’m seeing if I can pull tape from the businesses across the street.

BECKETT
Did you get ahold of next of kin?

RYAN
No, she doesn’t have any. (he consults his folder) Holly was an only child. Bounced around foster care until she was 18.

CASTLE
That can’t have been an easy childhood.

RYAN
Probably why her hobbies as a teenager include burglary and shoplifting. Then she graduated to grand-theft.

BECKETT
Anything more recent?

RYAN
Not in the last 7 years. She must have cleaned up her act when she got serious about being a DJ. Oh, and get this. The uniforms canvassing Holly’s apartment building found a neighbor who saw a man pounding on Holly’s door a few days ago.

BECKETT
What was it about?

RYAN
Neighbor said he screamed ‘you won’t get away with this’. Either Holly wasn’t home or she wouldn’t answer the door and eventually the guy took off. Neighbor’s with a sketch artist as we speak.

BECKETT
Okay.

ESPOSITO
Yo. I got a hit on that phone number written on Holly’s hand. It belongs to a Tyrese Wilton. Apparently he’s some big time record producer.

BECKETT’S phone chimes and she checks it.

CASTLE
(checks a file) He’s on the guest list. He was at the party.

BECKETT
You guys see what he knows. Castle, Lanie knows where our victim was killed.

She stands from her desk and CASTLE follows.

INT – MORGUE

LANIE
I noticed it when I was cutting her out of her clothes. Stains on her outfit. The lab identified it as peanut oil with high concentrations of MSG.

CASTLE
Meaning … what? She was eating Chinese food and spilled some on herself?

LANIE
Except (she sends him a look) I checked the contents of her stomach. No Chinese. And they weren’t serving any at the party, either. So I checked with CSU. They said there was no trace of it in the dumpster, but it’s all over the tarp, meaning …

BECKETT
She may have been killed at or near a Chinese restaurant.

LANIE nods.

CASTLE
Narrowing it down to every single block in Manhattan.

LANIE turns to glare at him.

BECKETT
Uh … what about the gun?

LANIE
The slug is from a .380 but there were no ballistic hits in the system. Oh, and when CSU processed the tarp and the clothes they also found these. (she holds up an almost clear slide) Synthetic fibers. They didn’t come from the dumpster either, but the lab is still running tests. I’ll keep you posted.

EXT – NEW YORK ALLEYWAY

RYAN and ESPOSITO have parked their car and are headed to TYRESE WILTON’S studio on foot.

RYAN
If Tyrese is such big time, why is the entrance to his studio in an alley?

ESPOSITO
Because. Celebrities don’t want paparazzi taking their picture all the time. (he looks over to see RYAN run a hand through his hair and he stops short) Yo. Did you just do the hair thing?

RYAN
What hair thing?

ESPOSITO
Every time you’re about to meet a celebrity or a pretty girl you run your hand through your hair.

RYAN
(he ignores that) TMZ said that Tyrese was at that party with Josie Lang. He’s producing her new album.

ESPOSITO
Yeah well, she’s no Regina.

RYAN
I understand the image of her as a girl scout is seared into your memory, but Josie is a real vocalist.

ESPOSITO
Whose fan base consists of 12 year old girls … and you.

He presses the buzzer.

INT – TYRESE WILTON’S STUDIO

TYRESE WILTON
Stand by.

JOSIE LANG is in the recording box.

JOSIE LANG
Hey Ty, you want me to take that from the second bar?

TYRESE
Sorry Jo, we’ve got to take 15.

She smiles and takes off her headset.

RYAN
Hey, since Josie was at the party I should probably take her statement, right? You got this, right bro? Thanks.

RYAN rambles, then races off to talk to JOSIE. He manages to run his hand through his hair once more. ESPOSITO isn’t amused.

TYRESE
Sorry, this is such a crazy thing. I can’t believe she’s dead.

ESPOSITO
How well did you know Holly, Tyrese?

TYRESE
I met her for the first time at the party. I was there with Josie because we had been working on her album and I used to produce Regina back in the day.

ESPOSITO watches through the glass as RYAN is extra attentive to JOSIE.

ESPOSITO
Can you tell me why we found your phone number written on the victim’s hand?

TYRESE
What, that?

ESPOSITO
Mmhmm.

TYRESE
I gave her my digits so we could set up a meeting.

ESPOSITO
About what?

In the other room JOSIE leaves. RYAN gestures wildly, with a smile, to ESPOSITO.

TYRESE
If there’s one thing I’m good at, it’s spotting talent. Her mashups and beat match were better than most of the guys droppin’ albums today. I was blown away. I told her I wanted to take her to the next level.

ESPOSITO
So how did she react to that?

TYRESE
She was thrilled. Said a break like this is what she’d been working for. She was supposed to call me today.

ESPOSITO
You have any idea why she rushed out of that party early?

TYRESE
No. Could’ve had something to do with that fight, though.

ESPOSITO
What fight?

TYRESE
You heard of MC Thug?

ESPOSITO
MC Thug? Yeah, the rapper. He’s been shot, like, 7 times, right?

TYRESE
That’s the one. Now on Holly’s first break, he walked up to her booth, starts talking to her real low and angry. I could see she was getting upset, trying to push him away. But he grabbed her wrist and said ‘next time, it’s gonna end different’. Then he saw me coming and bounced. I was going to talk to her about it, but you know, I got caught up with some folks. (he shrugs) Next thing I knew, she was gone.

ESPOSITO
This MC Thug. You see him at the party anymore after Holly left?

TYRESE
No. In fact, I didn’t see him the rest of the night.

INT – TYRESE WILTON’S STUDIO

RYAN is sitting with JOSIE, but he’s done questioning her.

RYAN
So if you could just make it out to Jenny and Kev. (he’s rambling) It’s short for Kevin.

ESPOSITO
Hey. Fanboy. Let’s go.

RYAN takes back his notepad from JOSIE.

RYAN
Thank you, so much. She’s going to die when she sees this. Thank you! Nice to meet you!

He scrambles after ESPOSITO.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

ESPOSITO
MC Thug. (he holds up a photo) AKA Darius Carson. His rap sheet includes assault with a deadly weapon and attempted murder. And that was just at this year’s hip hop music awards.

BECKETT
How did Holly wind up in the sights of a guy like that?

RYAN
Well, whatever was going on between them started way before that party. The guy that was pounding on Holly’s door, threatening her? The sketch came in from the neighbor. Look familiar?

He holds the sketch up next to the photo on the murder board. It looks a lot like CARSON. BECKETT and ESPOSITO share a knowing look.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT INTERROGATION ROOM

BECKETT
Darius Carson.

DARIUS CARSON
No one calls me Darius unless you my momma. And by the looks of that body, you ain’t.

BECKETT
Yeah well, I’m sure your momma’s so proud.

CARSON
Yeah.

BECKETT
So, Darius. According to Regina Cane’s party planner you weren’t on the original guest list until you made a last minute phone call to get in the party.

CARSON
I’m a fan of her music. That a crime?

CASTLE
No, but murder is.

CARSON
I know you ain’t a cop with that fancy shirt and poufy hair.

BECKETT
He might not be, but I am. Are you sure you went to the party to see Regina?

CASTLE sighs and shrugs it off, but he turns to look at himself in the mirror.

CARSON
Yeah, I’m real sure. Why?

BECKETT shows him a photo.

BECKETT
We know you visited DJ Beat’s apartment before the party. We know that you fought with her that night, and then she turned up dead.

CARSON
I had nothing to do with that mess.

BECKETT
Yeah, but you had something to do with her.

CARSON
Damn straight. I wanted my girl’s bracelet back.

CASTLE
Who had your girl’s bracelet?

CARSON
I threw a party at my crib last week. I hired DJ Beat to spin. The next day, my girl Dakota realized her diamond bracelet is missing. Now that b*itch and the little b*itch of an assistant are the only ones there that I couldn’t vouch for.

CASTLE
The b*tch had an assistant b*tch?

CARSON
Yeah, the little punk that works for her.

BECKETT
So you tracked her down to the party and when she ran you followed her and you killed her.

CARSON
No, I told her she had a day to cough it up. Or else.

CASTLE
Or else what?

CARSON
(glares) Or else is usually enough.

BECKETT
Where were you between 11 and midnight?

CARSON
Upstairs. (he barks a laugh) With my girl.

CASTLE
Dakota.

CARSON
Different girl. Kaya.

BECKETT rolls her eyes.

BECKETT
All right, I’m going to have to hold you while we look in to that.

CARSON
Good. That helps my street cred. You guys are going to do a mug shot, right? ‘cause I brought my lighting guy with me.

He points out the window to the guy standing by. The guy waves. CASTLE waves back, a bit shocked, by BECKETT’S not amused.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

ESPOSITO
Thanks. (he hangs up the phone and looks up to CASTLE and BECKETT) Hey guys. So Kaya confirms she was “hanging out” with MC Thug in one of the bedrooms ‘til 12:30.

RYAN
And he did file a police report about the missing bracelet, so I requested a list of all the parties that Holly worked in the past year. Of the more than 50 events, turns out that thefts were reported in 7 of them. The MO was the same every time. Mostly high-end jewelry. In total, almost half a million bucks. (CASTLE startles) All from parties at upscale residences. And I also confirmed with Holly’s booking agent that she always worked with an assistant. Paul Travers.

BECKETT
Mmkay, so the of them were a crew using her DJ skills to access high-end homes and then cleaning them out along the way.

RYAN nods.

ESPOSITO
She does have a history of theft, so maybe she went back to her old ways.

CASTLE
But if the assistant were at the party with her, where is he and why hasn’t he come forward?

BECKETT
There’s only one reason. He was involved.

ESPOSITO agrees.

INT – TWEFLTH PRECINCT INTERROGATION ROOM

PAUL TRAVERS
Involved in what? My friend is dead and now you’re saying, what, that we were like Bonnie and Clyde?

BECKETT
Paul, thefts were reported at seven of the parties that you both worked.

PAUL
Oh, and because of her history it’s gotta be her? Music saved her. She was done with that life.

CASTLE
And what about you? According to Holly’s agency, you were responsible for setting up and breaking down the equipment.

PAUL
(shrugs) So?

BECKETT
So you never broke it down last night. You left the party and never came back, same as Holly, only you’re still alive and she’s dead.

PAUL
Last night?

BECKETT
Mmhmm.

PAUL
I wasn’t even there last night.

BECKETT
Paul, don’t lie. She’s got you listed on her invoice.

She tosses a paper at him, which he studies.

PAUL
Yeah, I – I know. A few times this past year she’d call me up last minute to say she was using another guy. It was like her cousin or something and he needed the work. I know she felt back about it because she still offered to pay me anyway.

CASTLE looks at BECKETT questioningly.

PAUL
I was at a birthday dinner yesterday night. I have witnesses.

CASTLE hands him another piece of paper.

CASTLE
Which of these parties did the other guy work?

PAUL scans the paper, then points.

PAUL
This one, this one, here - (he flips the paper) – this one, this one, this one, and … that one.

BECKETT looks at CASTLE in admiration.

CASTLE
The same ones that reported robberies.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

RYAN
So far only one witness, a caterer, remembers seeing a guy setting up Holly’s equipment last night. And she only saw him from behind and he was wearing a hoodie, so we reached out to other party guests, see if we can get a better description.

BECKETT
So was anything stolen from the party last night?

RYAN
No. We asked everyone and so far no one’s reported anything missing.

ESPOSITO
Yo. So unis searched Holly’s apartment again. There’s no sign of the stolen goods. And there’s no influx of cash into her account, so if she was making money off this thing, there’s no evidence of it.

CASTLE studies the murder board.

CASTLE
What if this mystery assistant is the one behind it all? I mean, think about it. He forces Holly to get him into these parties. While she’s busy spinning, he’s free to walk around these fancy apartments. And since he’s hired help, nobody pays him extra attention. It’s candy from a baby.

ESPOSITO
But when MC Thug confronted Holly, she got scared. So she threatened to blow the whistle on the assistant.

BECKETT
Well, that would certainly give him motive for murder.

RYAN
But with Paul’s name on the invoice, there’s no record of him. How’re are we going to find him?

CASTLE
He helped set up that equipment last night, right? His fingerprints would be on it.

It’s an interesting idea. ESPOSITO nods.

BECKETT
Get CSU on it.

EST – NEW YORK CITY, MORNING

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

BECKETT is going through paperwork to try to find the mystery assistant.

CASTLE
Ooh, grunt work. I’ll come back later.

BECKETT
So long as you leave the coffee.

She sets down her cup and reaches for the cup he’s brought her.

CASTLE
What did you find?

BECKETT
Holly’s phone records. She received calls from a payphone in Washington Heights the same days she was booked for the parties where the thefts happened.

CASTLE
Well, maybe it’s her mystery assistant calling for details.

BECKETT
Holly grew up in the Heights so it might be someone from the old neighborhood, but it doesn’t bring us any closer to finding him.

ESPOSITO
Doesn’t need to. (he holds up a folder) CSU matched a print on that equipment to one Joey Malone, street name Monster. He’s got a list of priors a mile long. Unis took him down in Washington Heights. He’s in the box. Go take a look.

CASTLE and BECKETT follow ESPOSITO.

CASTLE
Monster. Now that sounds like the kind of ganged up thug that would shoot you dead and leave you in a dumpster someplace. Probably half man, half mountain, full of prison tats. Or is he quietly dangerous? Like Javier Bardem in any movie where he’s got weird hair.

ESPOSITO
Just … take a look for yourself.

They walk into the observation room. In the interrogation room is a bored looking kid.

ESPOSITO
Behold. Monster.

BECKETT is confused.

CASTLE
More like Cookie Monster.

ESPOSITO nods.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT OBSERVATION ROOM

BECKETT
So what do we know about this kid?

ESPOSITO
Well, he’s not related to Holly, for one. His father died of a drug overdose when he was seven. His mom committed suicide a couple of years ago. His uncle, Martin Decker, is the one who took over guardianship.

BECKETT
Where’s his uncle now?

ESPOSITO
He’s not at home. I notified social services thinking they might know how to reach him.

BECKETT
You said he had priors?

ESPOSITO
Yeah, he was busted for breaking and entering, burglary, resisting arrest.

BECKETT
Now he’s moved up to the big leagues.

She pages through his file.

ESPOSITO
So, uh, what’s the plan here?

BECKETT
I’m gonna go in alone, so he doesn’t feel outnumbered. See what he’s made of.

She looks like she feels for the kid as she leaves the room, but she has a job to do.

CASTLE
He’s 14. It’s hard to believe he’s capable of something like this.

ESPOSITO
Not in his world it isn’t.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT INTERROGATION ROOM

BECKETT
Hi Joey, I’m Detective Kate Beckett.

JOEY MALONE
A major hottie is what you are.

BECKETT
(nods uncomfortably) Okay, now that we got that cleared up, I need to ask you a few questions .

She sits across from him.

JOEY
You need permission from my guardian. The last time I checked, I’m a minor.

BECKETT
Well, we’re making our best effort to get ahold of your uncle. In the meantime, NYPD policy allows me to talk to you.

JOEY
So talk.

BECKETT
We’re looking into the murder of Holly Rhodes.

JOEY
(shifts) Heard about that. Real sad.

BECKETT
I understand that two nights ago you worked for her. Did you see her having problems with anyone?

JOEY
No.

BECKETT
Do you know why she left the party early?

JOEY
Nope.

BECKETT
Do you know where she went?

JOEY
No clue.

BECKETT
Okay, let me ask you this. Why do you think Holly hired a 14 year old kid with a record to be her tech assistant?

JOEY
‘cause I’m the best.

BECKETT
The best at what? Stealing? (JOEY smirks) Every time you’ve worked for Holly, high-end jewelry has gone missing. Every single time.

JOEY
I don’t know nothing about that.

BECKETT
Did Holly know about the stealing or did she find out that night? Is that why you killed her?

JOEY grows serious.

JOEY
What – what, kill her? No. No. I didn’t do that.

BECKETT
We have witnesses that saw you leave the party right after she did and you never came back for the equipment. So where were you between 11 and midnight?

JOEY
I was at – I was at TV King.

BECKETT
You left the party and equipment to go to TV King in the middle of the night? You’re going to have to do better than that, Joey.

JOEY
(sits forward) You may be allowed to talk to me, but I don’t have to talk back.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

BECKETT adds JOEY’S photo to the murder board.

CASTLE
Robbery and murder? Maybe Monster wasn’t such a bad nickname after all.

BECKETT
You know what? I’m not so sure about that. He expected the conversation about the stealing, but when I accused him of murdering Holly that threw him.

RYAN
And I think I know why. Joey’s alibi checks out.

BECKETT
Seriously? He was at TV King?

RYAN
The assistant manager sometimes lets him play video games up on the big screen. And that’s where Joey was during Holly’s time of death.

CASTLE
Well then, if he didn’t kill Holly then who did?

ESPOSITO
The brains behind this operation, that’s who. A kid like Joey goes from smash and grab to stealing a half a mil in jewelry? I don’t think so. Someone put him up to this.

RYAN
No, it makes sense. Some savvy criminals use minors to do their dirty work.

CASTLE
Of course. A Fagin to Joey’s Oliver Twist.

RYAN
And if Holly’s involved, that makes her the Artful Dodger. Or the Artful DJ.

CASTLE
Ooh, nicely played.

BECKETT
And that would explain why we never found the stolen loot in Holly or Joey’s apartments. Fagin has it.

RYAN
That gives him motive to get rid of Holly if she ever gave him any trouble.

ESPOSITO
Well, if we’re right, Joey knows who our killer is. (he turns to look at JOEY through the window) I get this kid. Let me get a crack at him.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT INTERVIEW ROOM

JOEY is paging through a magazine when ESPOSITO walks in. ESPOSITO sits a soda on the table in front of JOEY.

JOEY
Hey, where’s the super hot detective?

ESPOSITO
Oh, you’re lookin’ at him. (JOEY makes a face) Don’t laugh. I was featured in the NYPD calendar.

JOEY
Bet that was a big seller. (ESPOSITO almost looks offended) So uh, you must be the good cop.

ESPOSITO
Well, I don’t know about that. But I could be your ticket out of this.

JOEY
Yeah? How’s that work?

ESPOSITO
We know you didn’t kill Holly. All you did was lift a bunch of jewelry.

JOEY
Man, I didn’t –

ESPOSITO
Just save it. We don’t care about the jewelry. We can take those charges off the table. All we want is the guy who put you up to it.

JOEY
(shrugs) I don’t even know who you’re talking about.

ESPOSITO
Joey, c’mon. I just gave you the winning lottery ticket. Now the right move here is to cash that in, not tear it up.

JOEY
I bet this is the part where you tell me I don’t know the seriousness of my situation. How unless I tell you everything that I know you can’t help me. And then you’ll lean in close like you care about me, like you’re my friend. And you’ll make promises you’ll never keep.

ESPOSITO
I keep all my promises, bro.

JOEY
That’s what everybody says.

ESPOSITO
This is a limited time offer, Joey.

JOEY
(shrugs) Not interested.

ESPOSITO
Okay. (he clears his throat and pulls a photo of HOLLY’S body from his folder) I want you to take a look at this. This is how Holly ended up. Shot. Tossed in the garbage. Do you think she deserved that? Hum? (off JOEY’S stunned expression) Oh, what? No smartass comeback now? You work with this woman. You knew her. The same guy that has you stealing jewelry did this to Holly. He uses kids like you. And then he just gets to walk away while you have to sit in here and answer all my questions. You know what you are to him right now? You’re a loose end. (he points to HOLLY’S body) So take a hard look. Because this is your future. This is you.

JOEY
You’re wrong. He won’t hurt me.

ESPOSITO
He won’t. Not once we stop him. All I need is his name, Joey.

JOEY hesitates then sits back.

JOEY
I still don’t know who you’re talking about.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT WORK ROOM

ESPOSITO and BECKETT are meeting with JOEY’S social worker.

MS. COOPER
I’ve been Joey’s case worker since his parents died. Needless to say, it hasn’t been smooth sailing, but I can’t imagine he’d do anything like this.

BECKETT
Well, we think that the thefts were someone else’s idea.

ESPOSITO
Do you know of anyone in his life that might have drawn him into this?

MS. COOPER
No, but it wouldn’t surprise me if there was someone. His uncle’s not exactly a strong role model.

BECKETT
What about his uncle? Where is he now?

MS. COOPER
We’re trying to track him down. He may be in AC. He’s a card player.

ESPOSITO
Guy sounds like a real prize.

MS. COOPER
You want the best option for these kids, and sometimes all you have is the least bad option. Which brings me to the issue of what to do with Joey. Are you charging him with theft?

BECKETT
We were hoping not it.

MS. COOPER
(nods) So. I’ll put him in temporary foster care.

ESPOSITO
Whoa, whoa, whoa. He’s not safe out there in the world right now. The guy that we’re after killed a woman. He could do the same thing to Joey.

MS. COOPER
Then you can put him in protective custody in juvenile hall.

ESPOSITO
I - I can’t just throw him in juvie. I’m trying to gain his trust here.

BECKETT
Ms. Cooper, this boy is the key to us solving a murder.

MS. COOPER
Well, I’m sorry, but those are the choices.

ESPOSITO hesitates. He catches sight of JOEY outside the room.

ESPOSITO
What if I take him?

BECKETT turns to look at ESPOSITO, surprised.

ESPOSITO
That way he’s not locked up and I can keep him safe. (to BECKETT) And I can continue to work on him.

BECKETT turns back to MS. COOPER. It’s an idea.

BECKETT
What about that?

MS. COOPER
(sighs, shakes her head) I – I suppose I could delay his paperwork. But this would be for one night. And it means that Joey Malone is your responsibility.

ESPOSITO
That’s cool. I got this. The kid doesn’t have a father. He probably just needs someone to connect with.

INT – ESPOSITO’S APARTMENT

ESPOSITO walks in and stops to pick up the mail. JOEY follows him.

JOEY
I’d rather have a pajama party with the lady cop.

ESPOSITO
Yeah well, it looks like I drew the short straw. Literally.

ESPOSITO hits the lights and JOEY looks around.

JOEY
Man, no wonder you’re single! No woman would spend time here unless it was against her will.

JOEY starts hitting a sparring bag.

ESPOSITO
Yeah? What about you, Martha Stewart? What’s you place supposed to be? Shabby chic? Emphasis on shabby?

JOEY
It’s a dive. But it’s not my fault. My uncle would rather blow all of his money at the tables.

ESPOSITO
Must be why he’s too busy to call us back.

JOEY
Don’t wait by the phone. He only cares about claiming me as a dependent.

JOEY makes himself comfortable on ESPOSITO’S couch, putting his feet up on the coffee table.

ESPOSITO
My parents split up when I was 5. (he slaps JOEY’S leg) Man, get your feet off my table. (they share a glare) Dad moved to Florida with his new wife. Most I ever got after that was a phone call and a post card.

JOEY
Post card?

ESPOSITO
(nods) Yeah.

JOEY
How old are you, anyway?

ESPOSITO
Ancient. But I’m young enough to remember what it was like. (he quiet for a second) Must miss your folks.

JOEY is quiet himself.

JOEY
After my dad died, my mom kept going. You know, she tried to pretend that we were still a normal family. She did her best to take care of me until … she couldn’t do it anymore.

ESPOSITO
Now you take care of yourself.

JOEY
Yeah. (his attitude changes) Look, man. I know you didn’t have to do this. Take me in, I mean. So uh, thanks.

ESPOSITO nods.

ESPOSITO
Im’ma go grab you a blanket. Pillow.

JOEY
Hey, at least you didn’t skimp out on the audio visual budget.

ESPOSITO
You know that’s right. Oh, and I’ve got Assassin’s Creed 3. So go ahead and knock yourself out. Oh, and uh … put it on dual player mode so I can come back and school you.

He’s in the closet pulling linens for JOEY.

JOEY
$20 bucks says you won’t make it past level 1.

ESPOSITO
(scoffs) You’re crazy.

ESPOSITO comes back into the living room but stops short. It’s empty. Joey’s gone, but the window is open. ESPOSITO sighs heavily.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

ESPOSITO walks in with JOEY handcuffed to his wrist. RYAN gives the setup an odd look.

ESPOSITO
Sit down.

JOEY does, and ESPOSITO transfers the cuff from his wrist to the desk.

RYAN
Okay. Care to explain?

ESPOSITO
What? The handcuffs?

RYAN
No, no. The stylish shoes that you’re wearing. Yes, the handcuffs.

ESPOSITO
Well, junior here tried to pull a Houdini on me last night.

JOEY
Who the hell is Houdini?

ESPOSITO
(harshly) Shut up.

RYAN
Out the window?

ESPOSITO
Yeah.

ESPOSITO sits.

RYAN
Down the fire escape?

ESPOSITO
Yeah. And then on to a moving garbage truck. Then on a skateboard for five blocks that took him all the way to the L-train.

JOEY picks up a signed baseball from ESPOSITO’S desk.

RYAN
(smiles) How’d you keep up?

JOEY
He didn’t.

ESPOSITO
Shut up. What the – (he grabs the baseball) Give me that. (he puts the ball back) Commandeered this dude’s bicycle. Then he lost me in the subway. (Joey laughs) But then I caught him. At the next stop. Kid’s wily. But I’m wilier.

RYAN is enjoying the story.

RYAN
Wow. Just like The French Connection. In the meantime, CSU was able to ID those fibers found on the tarp that holly’s body was wrapped in.

ESPOSITO
Where’re they from?

RYAN
Germany. Based on the chemical composition and color, they’re fibers from carpeting used by a high-end European car manufacturer to line their vehicle’s trunks.

ESPOSITO
Mmm. Now we know how Holly’s body ended up at the construction site.

RYAN
CSU narrowed it down to a model 2010 to 2012 X-5. I’ll canvass around the construction site, see if anyone saw a car like that hanging around the dumpster.

CASTLE and BECKETT walk in.

BECKETT
So we pulled Joey’s juvie files from the central clerk’s office.

CASTLE
Theory being, whoever he’s involved with might be in there somewhere. (he taps the folder)

BECKETT
Unless he gave you a name.

ESPOSITO
Uh … no. Not exactly.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT WORK ROOM

BECKETT
Look, we find out who Joey got mixed up with, we find our killer. There’s gotta be something in these files that points to him.

ESPOSITO
Looks like he got his first taste with a B and E when he was 11 years old.

BECKETT
He graduated to burglary when he was 12 when he broke into a mom and pop corner store along with an unidentified adult male.

CASTLE
Maybe he’s the one we’re looking for.

ESPOSITO
No, we’re not looking for someone he was busted with. This guy’s smart enough to stay above it all.

They go back to work.

ESPOSITO
Check this out. Two months ago someone named Shane Winters bailed him out after he was picked up on a shoplifting charge.

BECKETT
Shane Winters? I remember that name. (she rummages through some other papers) When Holly Rhodes, our victim was 17, she was busted on a grand theft charge and check out who posted bail.

She slides CASTLE the folder.

CASTLE
Shane Winters. (BECKETT smiles) That’s our guy.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

ESPOSITO
Shane Winters. (he holds up a photo) Trafficking, grand theft, assault with a deadly weapon, extortion. This dude’s dabbled in everything.

BECKETT
So when Holly was a troubled teen she must have worked with Shane just like Joey is.

CASTLE
But then she cleaned herself up, got out of the life.

ESPOSITO
When he figured out what kind of access she had at the parties, he pulled her back in.

BECKETT
Well, that explains why Holly had to hire Joey as an assistant.

RYAN
Just ran Shane Winters. Guess was he drives. 2010 X-5.

ESPOSITO
That would have the carpet fibers we found on the tarp.

CASTLE
Yeah, and a roomy trunk for all your body moving needs.

BECKETT
We gotta bring him in.

RYAN
We tried to. Unis busted in on his last known address. He’s not there.

ESPOSITO thinks for a second, then walks off without any explanation.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT INTERVIEW ROOM

JOEY
So what are you? Officer Babysitter?

JOEY lounges on the couch while OFFICER LT watches him.

JOEY
You get paid extra for doing that?

LT doesn’t respond.

ESPOSITO
Where’s Shane Winters?

JOEY
Where’s my soda?

ESPOSITO
LT. (LT nods and leaves them with a smile. When he’s gone, ESPOSITO grabs JOEY and hauls him up) You figure you’re special to him, don’t you? Well, you’re not.

JOEY
Man, you don’t get it. I’m not giving him up.

ESPOSITO
You know how much time keeping your mouth shut will buy you with Shane? Huh? As long as it takes him to pull his gun and shoot you with it. And then he’s just going to move on to the next lost kid. Don’t let it end that way, Joey. Just tell me where I can find him.

JOEY’S quiet, but he levels ESPOSITO with a look.

JOEY
I’m not a rat.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BREAK ROOM

BECKETT
Any luck?

ESPOSITO
Eh, I just want to wring this little bastard’s neck right now.

CASTLE
I call that a no.

ESPOSITO sits and BECKETT does too.

BECKETT
So we’ve got a BOLO out on Shane and his car.

ESPOSITO
Freakin’ kids, man. (to CASTLE) I don’t know how you do it, bro.

CASTLE
Ooh. No, no. I lucked out with Alexis. At a certain point you realize you’re just dealing with someone who hasn’t been around as long as we have. They have to find their way.

ESPOSITO
The problem is, he’s already found his way. He just doesn’t see where it’s going to put him.

RYAN
Hey. No luck on the BOLO, but I talked to Garcia in robbery. We got a tip on Shane’s location. Wanna roll?

ESPOSITO
You know what? Let me get this one.

RYAN shrugs and throws ESPOSITO the car keys.

INT - BAR

ESPOSITO walks in and walks toward the bar.

BARTENDER
Hey sugar. What’s your poison?

He doesn’t respond. He just looks around the bar until he finds the guy he’s looking for. SHANE WINTERS realizes ESPOSITO is looking for him and gestures to his bodyguard to take care of it. ESPOSITO isn’t intimidated.

BARTENDER
Hello? What’re you drinking?

BODYGUARD
Mr. Winters is not taking any meetings today.

ESPOSITO turns to the bar.

ESPOSITO
Can I just get a bag of ice, please?

BARTENDER
What the hell do you want with a bag of ice?

ESPOSITO takes a step closer and knees the bodyguard in the groin. He groans and falls to the floor.

ESPOSITO
It’s for him. (he steps over the man) Excuse me.

WINTERS doesn’t move from his bench.

SHANE WINTERS
You must be Detective Esposito. Joey told me you two had been hanging out. Said sooner or later you’d find your way down here.

ESPOSITO
So he warned you?

WINTERS
No, he’s a good kid. Dependable.

ESPOSITO takes his handcuffs and throws them on the table in front of WINTERS.

ESPOSITO
Put ‘em on. (WINTERS doesn’t move) Or better yet, resist arrest. Please.

WINTERS
(laughs) Some other time maybe.

He picks up the handcuffs and doesn’t break ESPOSITO’S gaze as he cuffs himself.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT INTERROGATION ROOM

RYAN
Do you know a woman named Holly Rhodes, Shane?

WINTERS
Name sounds familiar.

ESPOSITO
Well, it should. You ran with her back in the day.

WINTERS
Oh, she ran. But not with me.

ESPOSITO
Why did you bail her out when she was a teenager?

WINTERS
Oh, I got a soft spot for kids, man.

RYAN
Yeah, yeah. You’re just like a regular Mr. Rogers. (WINTERS laughs) When was the last time you saw her, Shane?

WINTERS
Ah … last time I saw Holly. (he thinks) Don’t recall.

ESPOSITO
Well, let me help you out with that. It’s three nights ago. When you killed her.

WINTERS
(laughs) You’re wrong about that.

RYAN
Mmm, I don’t think so. See, when this whole DJ’ing gig of Holly’s took off, wealthy clients, penthouses, you saw a golden, diamond encrusted opportunity.

ESPOSITO
And that’s when you pressured Holly into bringing in Joey Malone as an assistant. He’d go into these fancy parties and he’d walk right out the front door with half a million in high-end jewelry. And your hands would stay clean.

WINTERS
You are right about that part, at least. (he raises a hand) My hands are clean.

ESPOSITO
But then something went wrong at the last party. (RYAN hums in agreement) I mean, maybe Holly pushed back. Or maybe she wanted you out of her life once and for all.

RYAN
But she knew too much, so she had to go.

WINTERS
Look, all I hear you guys saying is a whole lotta stuff that you can’t prove.

ESPOSITO
Well, we can prove that her body was in your trunk.

He pushes a paper toward WINTERS.

RYAN
Fibers that stuck to the tarp that Holly was wrapped in match your X-5.

ESPOSITO
We’re impounding it right now.

WINTERS
Well then, I guess you guys didn’t hear about it. About the little problem I had with my vehicle this morning. You see, I got a little careless. I was uh, lighting a cigarette and the next thing I know the whole car catches on fire. Inside, outside, the carpet. Whole thing burned to a crisp. I hate to tell you, but there’s probably not a fiber left to match. (he laughs) Crazy how things happen sometimes, huh? So again, whole lotta noise that you can’t prove. That being said, I’d like my lawyer.

RYAN and ESPOSITO know that WINTERS seems to have won this round.

ESPOSITO
(to RYAN) I need a minute alone.

RYAN glares at WINTERS, but he leaves. ESPOSITO watches him go, then closes the blinds to the interrogation room.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BREAK ROOM

JOEY plays with a piece of paper and doesn’t look surprised when ESPOSITO walks in.

ESPOSITO
You tipped off Shane. (he sits) After you bolted last night. You called him. Warned him that he was a suspect. Which gave him a change to torch his car. Cover up his role in Holly’s death. Congratulations, Joey. You helped him get away with murder. (JOEY looks ashamed) Now I’d beat your skinny little ass for being stupid if it’d change anything. But it won’t because, well, you’re so loyal. Now, let’s see how Shane returns the favor.

ESPOSITO pulls up a video of SHANE in interrogation and turns the laptop to JOEY. They watch.

WINTERS
I can see that you’re a little slow, but I just said I want my lawyer.

ESPOSITO
This is about the thefts. Somebody’s going to go down for them, and we know it’s going to be Joey Malone. The DA wants to try him as an adult. That means hard time. All you gotta do is man up. Man up about the thefts. Then maybe I can talk to the DA, get Joey a deal.

WINTERS
Look, man. The kid did the crime, he’s gotta do the time.

ESPOSITO pauses the video when JOEY cringes.

ESPOSITO
Have you seen enough? You still want to protect him?

JOEY thinks a minute, then sighs.

JOEY
Look, it was like you said. I go in with Holly, lift pricey jewelry. The more the better. But this time it was different.

ESPOSITO
Why?

JOEY
Shane told me that my mark was this music producer. Tyrese –

ESPOSITO
Tyrese Wilton.

JOEY
Yeah, yeah. It was weird. I was supposed to boost his cell phone.

ESPOSITO
(surprised) Why his cell phone?

JOEY
I don’t know. But I took it.

ESPOSITO
Yeah? And then what?

JOEY
Somehow Holly found out. And she flipped. She got in my face and told me to give the phone back. And I got scared because I knew she carried heat, but I had already handed the phone off to Shane. So I – I got out of there and … that was the last time I saw her. I didn’t know she would end up dead. I didn’t know Shane would kill her.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

BECKETT
So no doubt a guy like Shane would kill her, but it’s starting to look like he didn’t. He’s got an alibi.

ESPOSITO
I don’t believe it.

RYAN
Affidavits from six bar patrons all stating that Shane was there between 11 and midnight.

ESPOSITO
Well, he practically runs the place, so the patrons will say what he tells them.

BECKETT
So CSU just confirmed that his car was too burned for them to match the fibers or pull forensics, so we can’t even prove that he transported the vic’s body.

RYAN
We also can’t tie the murder weapon to him, either. According to her assistant Paul, Holly used to carry around a .380 pistol for protection. She might have been killed with her own gun.

CASTLE
Here’s something that doesn’t add up. Tyrese Wilton’s phone. Why would Shane tell Joey to steal a phone worth a couple hundred bucks? Especially when there had to be so much bling at that party.

ESPOSITO
Dude, nobody says bling anymore. Try shine.

CASTLE takes note.

RYAN
Here’s something else that doesn’t add up. All the guests were contacted and asked if they were missing any personal items. They all said no. So –

BECKETT
Why didn’t Tyrese Wilton mention that his phone was gone?

EXT – TYRESE WILTON’S STUDIO

RYAN presses on the buzzer. A door opens behind them and a man walks out with bags of trash. ESPOSITO walks over to look at the sign.

ESPOSITO
Yo. Check this out. It’s Yang Dynasty.

RYAN
That could explain the peanut oil on Holly’s clothes.

They follow the man to the dumpster. RYAN uses a handkerchief to open it and look in, but there’s nothing useful. But ESPOSITO spots something behind it.

ESPOSITO
There’s blood spatter on the wall.

He shoves the dumpster aside to get a better look.

RYAN
Looks like we found our crime scene.

ESPOSITO
Yep. And it’s right at Tyrese’s doorstep.

INT – TYRESE WILTON’S STUDIO

TYRESE
Are you saying that Holly was killed right outside my studio?

ESPOSITO
That’s right. So why don’t you tell us what she was doing here.

TYRESE
How the hell should I know?

RYAN
Hum. Then maybe you can tell us what you were doing between 11 and midnight the night of the party.

TYRESE
I was at the party. I stayed there until just after 1. You can check.

ESPOSITO
You were also asked if any of your stuff went missing the night of the party. You didn’t mention your phone.

TYRESE
Because my phone wasn’t missing.

ESPOSITO
You don’t have to lie to me, Tyrese. I talked to the kid who stole it.

TYRESE
I mean, it was missing for an hour or two, but then it turned up. (he grabs his phone) See? I found it in the bathroom at the end of the night.

RYAN
If Joey stole the phone how did it end up back at the party?

ESPOSITO
Whoever brought that back didn’t want it missed. Based on Shane’s MO, he was after something valuable, something he could sell. Yo Tyrese, what’s on that phone? Financial info, pictures, valuable data?

TYRESE
(shakes his head) Only one thing that really matters. I use this phone as an e-key.

ESPOSITO
An e-key?

TYRESE
An electronic key. It opens up this studio.

RYAN
Well, did Holly know that?

TYRESE
Yeah, I mentioned it to her when I discovered it was gone. I went to text her my number, but I had to write it on her hand instead.

RYAN
That’s why Holly was here. She realized that Shane stole the phone because he was going to rip the studio off.

ESPOSITO
She couldn’t let that happen, not with Tyrese here about to give her her big break.

RYAN
Right, so she races over here to confront Shane to stop him before he ripped you off.

TYRESE
Looks like she did, because nothing’s missing.

ESPOSITO
You sure?

TYRESE
Positive. I’ve got over two mil in equipment here and nothing – (he stops abruptly) Oh, God.

He turns to his computer and starts typing.

RYAN
What?

TYRESE
The recordings. If someone got their hands on an unreleased album …

ESPOSITO
It’d be worth a fortune.

TYRESE scans his library.

TYRESE
Not to mention tanking our record sales if it leaked online.

He clicks around, then checks JOSIE LANG’S new album.

TYRESE
Oh no. Josie Lang’s album was accessed at 11:45 the night of the party. Someone downloaded the masters.

ESPOSITO
Shane.

RYAN
Yeah.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

BECKETT
Look, I’m telling you. Shane’s alibi is rock solid.

ESPOSITO
How is that even possible?

BECKETT
We interviewed everyone in the bar. We even talked to the cabbies outside. And everyone said that he left around midnight.

ESPOSITO
Why would he torch his car if he didn’t dump her body?

BECKETT
He might have dumped her body, but our timeline says that he did not kill her.

ESPOSITO sighs.

ESPOSITO
Man.

He’s frustrated and he walks away.

RYAN
Wait a minute. We gotta be missing something here. So let’s just go over it again. We know that Joey handed Shane that phone around 11. And we know that Josie’s album was downloaded at 11:45. Holly was murdered sometime between 11 and midnight.

CASTLE
Wait a minute. The key to this whole thing is that phone. We’re assuming that Shane was the one that used it to break into the studio.

ESPOSITO
Because he’s the one that Joey gave the phone to.

CASTLE
Right. But witnesses place him at the bar at 11:30 to midnight. The album was downloaded at the studio at 11:45. It had to be someone else.

RYAN
Like who?

CASTLE
(hesitates) We’ll, it’d have to be someone from the party.

BECKETT
So then whoever broke into the studio must have returned the phone to the party so that Tyrese wouldn’t realize that it was even taken.

CASTLE
All we have to do is figure out which one of the guests had something to gain from stealing Josie’s album.

INT – REGINA CANE’S HOUSE

REGINA is in the middle of a dance lesson for her new album. She and her dance instructor are in front of a mirror.

DANCE INSTRUCTOR
Five, sex, seven, eight. Rock one, two, three, four. Step. Nice. Good. Point again.

They stop when they see CASTLE and BECKETT in the mirror.

REGINA
Hi. Did you guys not get the guest list that we sent over?

BECKETT
Yeah. (she holds up a paper) We – we did. We just need to ask you a few questions about your schedule the night of the party.

REGINA looks at her DANCE INSTRUCTOR and he leaves.

REGINA
Yeah, sure.

BECKETT
So according to your party planner you excused yourself at 11 to do a costume change for a performance of a track from your new album, is that correct?

REGINA
That sounds about right. But I just go where they tell me to. You know how it is.

CASTLE
Only your planner told us that you insisted on having a full hour.

REGINA
Have you ever tried changing into skin-tight leather pants? It’s time consuming.

Judging by their expressions, both CASTLE and BECKETT are intimately acquainted with skin-tight leather pants.

REGINA
Why? What’s the point?

BECKETT
Well, that hour gave you enough time to get to Tyrese Wilton’s studio, download Josie’s new album, and get back to the party to perform your song.

REGINA
Are you insane? Why would I do anything like that?

CASTLE
Because your album sales have been sagging for years.

REGINA is offended.

BECKETT
If your album didn’t perform, your record label was going to drop you.

REGINA
I’ve been with Harmony 360 for ten years. They love me.

BECKETT
It’s no secret that Josie Lang’s eclipsed you.

REGINA
Oh please. She’s been around for 2 seconds. Give it a year. You won’t even remember her name.

CASTLE
It doesn’t matter. Both your albums come out next week and she’s going to crush you.

Again REGINA is offended.

BECKETT
Unless someone mysteriously leaks Josie’s new album online.

CASTLE
Your plan was simple. Hire Shane to steal the phone, that way you can get into the studio.

BECKETT
The one thing that you didn’t plan on was Holly. She showed up and caught you just as you were leaving the studio.

CASTLE
And you couldn’t risk her exposing you. You fought, she pulled out her gun to protect herself, but you managed to use it on her instead.

BECKETT
So you called Shane and you got him to get rid of the body.

REGINA
Are you kidding me? That’s all speculation.

BECKETT
The one thing that’s not speculation is that you hired DJ Beat. (REGINA shrugs) How did you find out about her?

REGINA
Word of mouth.

BECKETT
More like your bodyguard grew up with Shane Winters. Shane had you hired DJ Beat so that Joey could get in and steal that phone.

CASTLE
You know what else isn’t speculation? The warrant she served on your ISP.

BECKETT
That warrant revealed the email account that you created to communicate with the hacker that was going to leak Josie’s album online. Is that enough fact for you?

CASTLE smiles.

REGINA
(laughs) My record sales may be down, but I can still afford a damn good lawyer.

CASTLE and BECKETT look at each other. It’s good enough for him.

INT – BAR

ESPOSITO is back looking for SHANE. He finds him and WINTERS nods at his bodyguard to leave them. The BODYGUARD does, positioning his hands in front of his groin in protection as he leaves.

WINTERS
(laughs) You keep showing up here like this, the boys are going to think you’re sweet on me.

ESPOSITO
(smiles) Not anymore they won’t. Huh. You are walking on grand larceny and accessory after the fact. Wow. Now, that kind of luck does not last long.

WINTERS
Well, I guess I’ve gotta go play the Powerball then tonight.

ESPOSITO nods. They size each other up for a minute before ESPOSITO leans forward and places two guns on the table.

ESPOSITO
This is my gun. (he points) And this one will be yours. You ever go near Joey, or any other kid, ever again, the story’s going to go like this. You pulled that piece on me. (he acts surprised) And I had to defend myself. So I killed you. You understand me? (he pushes the extra gun forward) Or should we play out that story right here, right now?

WINTERS
Um … I hear you.

ESPOSITO
Good.

INT – ESPOSITO’S CAR

He pulls up alongside a building and parks.

ESPOSITO
Yo. Reach back there and grab that file.

JOEY
What am I? Your secretary?

ESPOSITO
Just grab the file.

JOEY does.

JOEY
Haven’t I done enough to solve this case for you?

ESPOSITO
Read it.

JOEY flips the file open.

JOEY
Juvenile record for Javier … Esposito.

JOEY looks at him questioningly.

ESPOSITO
Yep. The good old days.

JOEY
So assault, resisting arrest, unlawful possession –

ESPOSITO
(grimaces) Yeah.

JOEY
You were a mess.

ESPOSITO
Yeah. But it’s all I knew. My dad was gone, my mom was working two jobs. In my neighborhood, you had to do what you had to do to survive. Not everybody made it.

JOEY
Is this where you tell me to man up and get my act together like you did?

ESPOSITO
No. It doesn’t work like that. You need help. For me it was one of my teachers. Saw a future in me that I didn’t even see in myself. But it was up to me to make a choice. To pick which road to go down. I talked to your school counselor –

JOEY
What?

ESPOSITO
She’s going to call me if you keep ditching.

JOEY
C’mon, man.

ESPOSITO
And I’m going to call you once a week. Check in.

JOEY smiles, then nods.

JOEY
All right. I’ll go. If you agree to get new furniture.

ESPOSITO scoffs.

JOEY
You can’t get laid on the regular with that junk you have. I’m just looking out for you.

ESPOSITO hands him his business card.

ESPOSITO
Here. If you need anything, day or night, call me at that number.

JOEY
Okay. (he unbuckles) You’re all right. For a cop.

ESPOSITO
I know. Now get out of my car.

JOEY almost smiles as he does. He shuts the door and heads inside, and ESPOSITO smiles as he watches him go.


THE END

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