5x24 Transcript

Transcribed by:
McManda
CASTLE
EPISODE 5x24
"Watershed"
EST – NEW YORK CITY, MORNING

INT – RESIDENTIAL HOTEL

A man lies on the floor. A woman is slumped over the bed. There is drug paraphernalia on the side table. It looks like a crime scene. It’s not, though; the woman stirs and sits up in bed. It was a rough night and all she wants is a shower. She heads for the bathroom and turns on the water and starts her bath. But then the water turns red. She’s confused and disgusted.

EXT – RESIDENTAL HOTEL ROOF

A maintenance man climbs the ladder of the water tank. He opens the side door and looks in, wanting to find the source of the red water. He’s surprised to see a body floating facedown. Her blood was turning the water red.

EST – WASHINGTON D.C., DAYTIME

INT – ATTORNEY GENERAL’S OFFICE

KATE BECKETT stands by the window. She’s flown to DC to meet with the Federal Task Force about their job opening but she’s not sure what that means.

FREEDMAN
Sorry to keep you waiting, Detective Beckett.

She turns to him and shakes his hand.

KATE BECKETT
Not a problem, sir. You’re a busy man.

FREEDMAN
Tell that to the Attorney General. He just had his first grandchild and he wants to show me pictures. (he opens the door to his office) So, Agent Stack spoke very highly of you. Smart, tenacious, innovative thinker. Said you were a good candidate for the opening on the AG investigative team.

BECKETT forces a smile.

BECKETT
Well, I appreciate his confidence, sir.

FREEDMAN
You don’t agree?

BECKETT
No, sir, it’s that – (she hesitates) - well, I’m a homicide detective. (she shrugs) I don’t have any federal experience.

FREEDMAN
The Attorney General’s not looking for federal experience. He wants people that can get the job done. And from everything I’ve read, that might be you.

BECKETT
Well, that’s very kind of you, sir.

FREEDMAN
It’s not kind. It’s what you believe to be true, isn’t it? It’s why you got on the plane this morning, because given your background, your qualifications, and your track record, you know that you’re headed for bigger things. Just like you know that opportunities like this come along once, maybe twice in a lifetime. But, if that’s not what you believe, if you think you’re just a homicide cop – (he pauses) – door’s right over there.

Part of her wants to run, but she doesn’t.

BECKETT
No sir. I know why I’m here.

FREEDMAN
(nods) Well, take a seat. Let’s get started.

She sits.

INT – CASTLE’S LOFT

ALEXIS CASTLE sits in a chair across from her dad’s desk.

ALEXIS CASTLE
Dad, we need to talk.

RICHARD CASTLE
Which of these do you like better?

He holds up two different Nikki Heat covers.

ALEXIS
Dad, I’m serious.

CASTLE
I like the green one, but it kind of looks like a giant green lizard’s attacking the city. Which is cool, but it’s not what the book’s about, so I either rewrite the book to make it about a giant lizard, or –

ALEXIS
Dad?

CASTLE
Magenta. You’re right. It’s classic. It’s cool. It tells the story –

ALEXIS
(clears her throat) Dad!

He stops, concerned.

CASTLE
What?

ALEXIS
Professor Rankowski still hasn’t received the check for my Costa Rica trip.

CASTLE
(avoiding) He didn’t? That’s so weird.

ALEXIS stands.

ALEXIS
You didn’t send it, did you?

CASTLE
Why – why do you want to go study the rainforest for six weeks anyway?

ALEXIS
Dad, we talked about this.

CASTLE
I know. But you’re going to be staying in the middle of a jungle, miles away from the nearest phone, hours from the nearest hospital. You could be bitten by a poisonous spider, or a poisonous snake. I looked it up. Toucans are extremely aggressive this time of year.

ALEXIS
(softly) Is this about Paris?

CASTLE is quiet.

CASTLE
I will admit to being slightly overprotective in light of recent events.

ALEXIS
Dad, I can’t stop living my life because of what happened. And yeah, I still have nightmares. But that’s one of the reasons I want to go. I don’t want to let fear win.

CASTLE
No. No, of course. You’re right. I’ll – I’ll write the check. But it’s not going to stop me from worrying about you. Or missing you.

ALEXIS suppresses a sigh of relief and walks around his desk for a hug.

ALEXIS
I wouldn’t want you to. But it’s only six weeks. It’s not like I’m going away forever.

His phone rings.

CASTLE
No. But it sounds like someone has.

INT – RESIDENTIAL HOTEL LOBBY

CASTLE
Hey there. Nice to see you.

CASTLE strides in and takes off his sunglasses.

CASTLE
Hey ‘sito.

JAVIER ESPOSITO
Hey.

CASTLE
Where’s Beckett?

ESPOSITO
How the hell should I know? Aren’t you two practically living together now?

CASTLE
Ah, well, she left me alone for a couple of days so I could finish Deadly Heat, which, by the way, is both deadly and hot, thank you very much for asking.

ESPOSITO
I didn’t.

CASTLE
Right.

BECKETT runs into the lobby. She’s still adjusting her jacket.

BECKETT
Hey. Sorry I’m late.

CASTLE
Everything okay?

He takes in her out of breath, not quite put together, rushed demeanor.

BECKETT
Um… yeah. Fine. So, what’ve we got?

ESPOSITO
This way.

BECKETT hesitates as she follows CASTLE and ESPOSITO.

EXT – RESIDENTIAL HOTEL ROOF

KEVIN RYAN
The Cedric’s a pretty typical, no star, residential hotel. Mostly transients and foreign tourists that don’t know any better. Guests started complaining of a strange colored water and also a foul odor coming from the pipes this morning. Maintenance finally checked it out and they found her.

He points.

BECKETT
Hey Lanie.

LANIE PARISH
Hey. So we’ve got a Caucasian female, probably 20, 21 years old.

BECKETT
How’d she die?

LANIE
Not sure yet. There’s evidence of blunt force trauma to the head but I won’t know cause until I get her back to the morgue.

ESPOSITO
CSU found traces of blood and hair on that ventilation fan. They’re running it for a match.

CASTLE
So someone smashed her on the head and dumped her in the tank?

RYAN
Looks like it. They found blood on the base of that ladder and on the hand railing. And also a bloody partial print.

BECKETT
Who else had access to the roof?

ESPOSITO
Pretty much anyone. The latch on the door’s been busted for years and often the residents will sneak up here for a smoke.

BECKETT
And what do we know about her?

RYAN
Building manager identified her as a resident named Crystal Sky. Checked in ten days ago into a room on the 18th floor. Paid in cash.

ESPOSITO
Crystal Sky? That name’s so fake it sounds like something out of one of your books.

CASTLE
(chuckles) Right? (realizing) Whoa, whoa. What is that supposed to mean?

ESPOSITO
What do you mean, what is that supposed to mean? Derrick Storm? Nikki Heat? Jameson Rook? Would it kill you to name someone Gonzalez every once in a while?

RYAN
Well, with no ID found on the body, no purse, wallet or phone in the room, it’s hard to know who she is.

BECKETT
Well, she’s been here for ten days. She must have made some friends.

INT – RESIDENTIAL HOTEL HALLWAY

ZIFF FALGRAD
Yeah, I knew her. We talked sometimes in the laundry room.

BECKETT
Did she tell you anything about herself? Like where she was from?

ZIFF
Texas. Lubbock, I think. You know, things were bad at home, her dad.

CASTLE
Any idea what she was doing in the city?

WOMAN
Oh, I can tell you what she was doing. The girl was a prostitute.

ZIFF
She wasn’t a prostitute. Why you gotta say that?

WOMAN
Because it’s true! The way she dressed, the sounds coming out of her room at all hours of the night. We all knew it.

CASTLE
What kind of sounds?

MARTIN TILLAGE
Her with her johns. Walls here are pretty thin.

ZIFF
Hey, you don’t know what you’re talking about, okay?

WOMAN
Ziff, I know you liked her. But somebody killed that poor girl. These folks need to know the truth.

BECKETT
When was the last time any of you folks saw her?

WOMAN
I saw her yesterday around 11PM. She was heading toward the laundry room.

CASTLE
Was anybody with her?

WOMAN
She was alone.

BECKETT
Okay. Thank you.

ESPOSITO
Yo. CSU just finished their sweep.

BECKETT turns to him.

BECKETT
Did they find anything?

ESPOSITO
It’s what they didn’t find. There were no prints. It’s like the place has been wiped down.

CASTLE
The killer must have come back to the room to get rid of the evidence.

BECKETT
All right, set up a canvass. See if anyone else entered or exited that room. And uh, let’s pull footage from the security cam in the elevator. Maybe it’ll tell us who she was with.

ESPOSITO
Right on.

He turns to leave.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

CASTLE
It doesn’t take a best-selling mystery writer to figure this one out. Small town girl with big city dreams ends up turning tricks to survive. It’s a tragic, yet all too familiar tale.

RYAN
Except that’s not this girl’s story. We just got a fingerprint off the victim’s body. Uh, her name’s not Crystal Sky and she’s definitely not from Lubbock, Texas.

BECKETT
Well, who is she?

RYAN puts a photo on the murder board.

RYAN
Erika Albrook. She’s an honors student at Harvard.

BECKETT
Our skid row hooker’s a Harvard honors student?

CASTLE
Like I said, a tragic, yet not so familiar tale.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT INTERVIEW ROOM

MR. ALBROOK
This doesn’t make any sense. She was supposed to be in Europe backpacking with her friends. We dropped her off at the airport.

BECKETT
When?

MRS. ALBROOK
Last Monday.

CASTLE
Same day she checked into that hotel. Any idea what she’d be doing in the city?

MRS. ALBROOK
None. And why would she stay there? My sister has a place in Midtown.

BECKETT
Were there any personal issues we should know about? Did she have any problems with – (she hesitates) – drugs or money?

MR. ALBROOK
(sighs) Erika would never do drugs, and she had plenty of money in her bank account for Europe.

CASTLE
Is it possible she met someone in the city? A new boyfriend?

MRS. ALBROOK
She would have told us.

BECKETT
Are you sure about that?

MRS. ALBROOK
I don’t know anymore. The only thing I do know is our daughter would never stay in a place like that. Detective, this isn’t her.

BECKETT is left to think.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

CASTLE and BECKETT are pondering over the murder board.

CASTLE
Straight A student, no history of trouble, on a dream European vacation, turns into a hooker in a ratty hotel. There is no way I’m letting Alexis go to Costa Rica now.

BECKETT
Maybe she broke under the pressure of being perfect. Or maybe she just decided she needed a change.

CASTLE
Honors student to prostitute in less than a week? That’s quite a change.

BECKETT
Yeah, it doesn’t make any sense.

CASTLE hums in agreement.

CASTLE
Hey, where were you this morning?

BECKETT
What do you mean?

CASTLE
(shrugs) Just called you. Bunch of times.

BECKETT
Uh … my phone must have been off.

That’s not the whole story but CASTLE seems to accept it.

CASTLE
Ah.

ESPOSITO
Hey guys. Come check this out.

They head for the work room. BECKETT is outwardly uncomfortable with having to lie.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT WORK ROOM

He runs the surveillance footage.

ESPOSITO
11PM the night Erika died. She takes the elevator down to the laundry room. (it continues) Now this is 11:05. She takes the elevator back up to her room.

CASTLE
Seems perfectly normal.

ESPOSITO
Yeah, but watch. (he points at the tape) This is just after midnight. She takes the elevator up to the top floor alone. But watch what happens when she gets there.

He plays the video and they watch ERIKA hesitantly stick her head out of the elevator.

BECKETT
It looks like she’s making sure no one sees her.

ESPOSITO
Or following her. But that’s it. She doesn’t come back down. And no one goes back up there until 4AM.

CASTLE
What about earlier?

ESPOSITO
Nope. The last person to go up to the top floor was another hotel guest an hour earlier. But the guy’s 80 years old. There’s no way he’s climbing a water tower with a body.

BECKETT
Sounds like whoever killed her used the stairs.

RYAN
Hey. So, no recent activity on her phone. She left it with her parents since she was supposed to be in Europe. But um … check this out.

He hands her a paper.

BECKETT
Credit card charge?

RYAN
Yeah. From two days ago. It’s her only transaction since checking into the hotel.

CASTLE
Margo’s. It’s a restaurant in Midtown. It’s expensive.

RYAN
Yeah. And she wasn’t alone. Turns out she spilt the check with a Talia McTeague.

BECKETT
Okay. Run her down. Maybe she can give us some answers. (he moves to leave) Hey, is there anything on the canvass?

RYAN
Nothing useful. None of the occupants of the hotel admit to seeing anyone going in and out of her hotel room, but given what they heard coming from her room at night it’s pretty clear she was a prostitute.

INT - MORGUE

LANIE
If she was a prostitute, she wasn’t very good at it.

CASTLE
Seriously? You can tell that?

LANIE
Prostitution usually means sex and there’s no evidence of sexual activity. But what I did find were defensive wounds, bruising around the neck, and evidence of multiple blows to the head. I’m guessing someone held her by her throat and slammed her head into that ventilation fan. Lack of water in the lungs indicate that she was dead before she went into the tank.

CASTLE
Then why even bother putting her in there?

LANIE
Water has a great way of washing away things like trace DNA.

CASTLE nods.

BECKETT
Wait a minute, I don’t understand. If she wasn’t having sex then what were all of those sounds coming out of her room?

INT – ERIKA ALBROOK’S APARTMENT

There’s moaning and the creaking of a bed. CASTLE raises his eyebrows and BECKETT shuts off the CD player next to her bed.

CASTLE
Okay, so she wasn’t really a hooker, she just wanted everyone to think that she was. Why?

BECKETT
I don’t know, but not everyone thought she was a hooker. That guy next door? He was pretty adamant that she wasn’t.

CASTLE
So what did he know that the others didn’t?

EXT – ZIFF FALGRAD’S APARTMENT

He opens the door only as far as what the chain will allow. CASTLE and BECKETT are on the other side.

INT – ZIFF FALGRAD’S APARTMENT

He’s let them in. He sits on his bed.

ZIFF
I already told you guys what I know.

BECKETT
Not everything, Ziff. How did you know she wasn’t a prostitute?

ZIFF
Look, please, I don’t want any trouble.

BECKETT
Did you murder her?

ZIFF
What? No!

BECKETT
Then nothing you say is going to get you into trouble.

ZIFF looks down and hesitates.

ZIFF
Well, I heard those … sounds, you know.

BECKETT
C’mon, Ziff.

ZIFF
There’s a hole. In the wall. In the back of the closet.

BECKETT
You were spying on her?

ZIFF looks almost ashamed but CASTLE prods him on.

CASTLE
What did you see?

ZIFF
Well, that’s the thing. I heard all those sounds, but there was nothing going on. It was just her sitting on the bed all night, fully dressed, with her headphones on, typing on her laptop.

BECKETT
There wasn’t a laptop in the room.

ZIFF
There used to be. She’d be up all night staring at the screen.

CASTLE
Did you ever seen anyone else in there with her?

ZIFF
No. It was always just her.

INT - TWELFTH PRECINCT INTERVIEW ROOM

RYAN opens the door and guides in TALIA MCTEAGUE.

RYAN
Thanks for coming in, Miss McTeague.

TALIA MCTEAGUE
Of course. I can’t belive she’s dead.

ESPOSITO
So, how did you know Erika?

TALIA sits.

TALIA
We were friends from Harvard. We were both computer science majors.

RYAN
Do you know what she was doing in the city?

TALIA
No.

ESPOSITO
But you had lunch with her two days ago. Why?

TALIA
It was weird. That morning I was getting coffee from this place in the Village, and I saw her in this big argument with some guy. She was dressed very different, sexed up and her hair was pink. Anyway, he storms up and I go up to her to say hello and she just looks at me with this panicked look on her face and bolts. Later that day she tracked me down, called me at my office, and said we needed to meet up right away.

RYAN
So what happened at lunch?

TALIA
She begged me not to tell anyone that she was in the city. That if people found out she could be in a lot of trouble.

ESPOSITO
Did she say why?

TALIA
I kept asking her what was going on. She said she was on some sort of a mission.

ESPOSITO
A mission?

RYAN
This guy that she was arguing with. Do you know who he was or what they were arguing about?

TALIA
No. I just heard him say ‘you have no idea what you’re up against. These people don’t mess around.’

RYAN looks at ESPOSITO, intrigued.

ESPOSITO
Can you describe him?

TALIA
Yeah.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

ESPOSITO adds a sketch of the man TALIA described to the murder board.

ESPOSITO
Uniforms are canvassing the Cedric but so far nobody recognizes him.

RYAN
Here’s what I don’t get. Why go through all the trouble of creating a fake persona when you’re just going to be on your laptop all night?

CASTLE
Wait. Does the Cedric have wi-fi?

RYAN
Yeah, that’s about all it has.

CASTLE
(to BECKETT) Computer science major? Hours on her laptop?

BECKETT
She’s a hacker. Which is why she was staying at the Cedric. She could pay in cash, remain anonymous while she was using the IP address.

CASTLE
Exactly. And whatever she was hacking into was either so illegal or so dangerous she had to make sure they couldn’t trace it back to her. And even if they did trace it back to her, they’d still have to find her amongst hundreds of residents.

BECKETT
So she created a false persona. And who’s going to look twice at a runaway hooker? I mean, she’s like the girl with the dragon tattoo.

CASTLE
Only they did find her, which is why we can’t find her laptop. Whoever she went up against killed her and took it.

ESPOSITO
Uh, problem. We don’t know who she went up against and none of her friends seem to know either.

BECKETT
Okay. Contact the Cedric’s internet provider and get a list of the IP addresses accessed by residents over the past two weeks. (to CASTLE) There’s gotta be an answer somewhere in there.

They break with their new tasks.

CASTLE
How about I take a break from writing tonight? You come to my place, I open a bottle of wine.

She can’t respond before VICTORIA GATES pokes her head out of her office.

CAPTAIN VICTORIA GATES
Detective Beckett? Can I have a word?

BECKETT
Yes. (to CASTLE) I’ll catch you later?

CASTLE
She’s all yours.

INT – GATES’ OFFICE

BECKETT walks in and stops.

BECKETT
Sir?

GATES
Shut the door.

BECKETT does. She waits, but GATES doesn’t look at her. She gestures to a chair.

GATES
Have a seat.

BECKETT is hesitant, but she does.

GATES
I uh … just got a call about you? From the Deputy Director of the FBI. Apparently you had quite the interview in DC. This morning.

BECKETT looks down. Not how she wanted GATES to find out.

BECKETT
Look, sir, it was –

GATES
I just want to tell you that … I gave you my highest recommendation.

BECKETT
You did?

GATES
Kate, this is the kind of work you were meant to be doing. You’d be on the national stage utilizing all your talents. This is an incredible opportunity. I would have killed to have a shot at something like this when I was your age.

BECKETT
(sighs) Thank you, sir, but it was just an interview. It’s a long shot at best.

GATES
No, I wouldn’t be so sure about that. From what I hear, you’re on a short list. And with any luck, this could be your last case.

Oddly that doesn’t make her feel better.

EST – NEW YORK CITY, DAWN

INT – MORGUE

BECKETT paces the hallway as she waits for LANIE to come in to work. LANIE comes through the door and startles.

LANIE
Girl, you scared me. What are you doing here so early?

BECKETT
I just wanted to see if you had anything new on the victim.

LANIE
Well, I was able to place time of death between 12 midnight and 1AM.

BECKETT
Mmhmm.

LANIE
Oh, and I found traces of creosote under her fingernails, which is probably meaningless since the boiler room is right next to the laundry room and it could have gotten on her hands when she went down there.

BECKETT sits.

LANIE
But … that’s not why you’re here, is it? (off BECKETT’S silence) Okay. What’s wrong?

BECKETT
Nothing. (sighs) Yet. Lanie, if you had the opportunity to do something that you wanted to do but it would mean that … everything in your life might change. Would you take it?

LANIE
Well, it depends. How good is the opportunity?

BECKETT
Great. Really, really great. (pause) But the job’s in DC.

LANIE
But you’re worried about Castle.

BECKETT
I mean, we’re in this relationship but … we never talk about where we’re going. And that’s okay, for now. It’s just – what if I get that job?

LANIE
Then you’re going to have to.

BECKETT
Yeah.

LANIE
Maybe that’s not such a bad thing.

BECKETT
Yeah, but what if it is? (her phone rings. She gives LANIE a look and answers) Hey, Castle. (she listens) Yeah, no. I just wanted to get an early start on the day. I didn’t want to wake you up. (pause) Okay, all right. I’ll meet you there.

She hangs up and gives LANIE a lost look.

EST – NEW YORK CITY, MORNING

INT - TWELFTH PRECINCT WORK ROOM

RYAN and ESPOSITO are with the tech agent TORY ELLIS trying to figure out what ERIKA was doing with her computer.

TORY ELLIS
So I ran down all the IP addresses that were accessed through the hotel’s server to find out what our victim was up to.

ESPOSITO
Any luck?

TORY
The majority of the IPs were to porn sites.

ESPOSITO
Really? Which ones?

TORY
I took the liberty of ruling those out, as well as commercial sites: Google, Amazon, YouTube. That narrowed it down to a couple hundred sites.

RYAN
So we’re still looking for a needle in a haystack.

TORY
Not necessarily. I took those and went back and looked for multiple unique site hits that coincided with the dates your victim was checked into the hotel. That left about 20.

ESPOSITO
Ooh. Now we’re talking, girl. I can deal with 20.

TORY
You might not have to. Of those 20, I looked for IPs that were accessed late at night during the period when your witness claimed your victim was on her laptop. (she runs a search) This is your most likely candidate. The server IP was accessed multiple times a night nearly every night Erika was at the hotel.

ESPOSITO
And who’s it belong to?

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

RYAN consults his notes.

RYAN
The IP was traced to Banks and Bauer. It’s a boutique law firm in Midtown represents high level politicos and corporations.

CASTLE hands BECKETT a cup of coffee.

CASTLE
Maybe Erika was some kind of an online Erin Brockovich. You know, a crusader for good delving into the seedy underbelly of the legal system to uncover some seedy truth.

BECKETT
Or maybe she was just hired by a rival firm to steal privileged information.

CASTLE
Now why must you be so cynical?

BECKETT
It’s in my job description.

CASTLE
Which is why you need me.

BECKETT
Okay, why don’t you dig into Erika’s life? Castle and I will hit the law firm, see if there’s any connection.

They pass by RYAN on their way out. BECKETT hands him her coffee, as does CASTLE. RYAN stands there awkwardly.

RYAN
Thank you?

INT – BANKS AND BAUER LAW FIRM

JESSICA BANKS looks at a photo of ERIKA.

JESSICA BANKS
No, I’ve never seen her before in my life.

BECKETT
Banks, you’re sure?

BANKS
Oh, I’m positive. Mitch! (to BECKETT) He’s my partner, Mitch Bauer. (she hands him the photo) Do you know this girl?

MITCH BAUER
No. Should I?

BANKS
Well, police think she might have hacked our server.

BAUER
Why? What’d she access?

BECKETT
We don’t know.

BAUER
Well, is she in custody?

CASTLE
Sort of.

BAUER
What do you mean, sort of?

CASTLE
She’s dead.

BECKETT
Actually, she was murdered and we believe it might have to do with whatever she was trying to access from your system.

INT – BANKS AND BAUER TECH ROOM

TECH
Security software and firewall protection don’t indicate any incursion.

BECKETT
Yeah, but if the hacker’s good your software might not pick it up. Is there any way to track network activity on your server for the past week?

TECH
Yeah.

He types and brings up a list.

CASTLE
There. Between 11PM and 3AM all last week.

TECH
But according to the usage logs, no one was signed onto the system at that time.

BANKS
Are you telling me this girl had access to our records for the last week and a half and you have no idea what she was doing?

TECH
I’m afraid so.

BECKETT
Are there any cases or litigation that your firm’s involved in currently that might hinge on privileged information?

BANKS
Are you kidding me, Detective? We’re a law firm. All of them.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

ESPOSITO
So no one at the law firm knew what she was looking for either?

BECKETT
Either that, or they’re covering something up. But the only evidence of what she was up to is on that missing laptop.

CASTLE
So without it we’re dead in the water. Much like Erika.

CASTLE & ESPOSITO
Too soon.

CASTLE nods and BECKETT smiles.

RYAN
Hey guys. I got something. That phone call that she made to her friend to arrange lunch had me wondering where exactly that call came from. Turns out, it was a pay phone from the hotel, so I ran down the other calls made from that phone. One of them popped.

He hands over a file.

BECKETT
Ian Blaylock?

RYAN
Yeah. He was an attorney at Banks and Bauer until he was fired six months ago. She made three phone calls to him from that phone, each lasting over five minutes. This is Blaylock.

He adds a photo to the murder board. It looks just like the sketch from TALIA.

INT – NEW YORK CITY APARTMENT BUILDING

BECKETT knocks on the door.

BECKETT
Mr. Blaylock! NYPD! (there’s no answer) Mr. Blaylock! Open up!

Nothing. ESPOSITO kicks in the door and they swarm the apartment. There’s nothing until they walk into the living room. There are a pair of glasses on the table, but more alarmingly IAN BLAYLOCK’S body is hung from the ceiling. CASTLE taps RYAN.

CASTLE
(whispered) I think our plot just thickened.

INT – IAN BLAYLOCK’S APARTMENT

The apartment is now a crime scene.

LANIE
I’m pretty sure this wasn’t a suicide.

BECKETT
How can you tell?

LANIE
See that diagonal ligature mark running up his neck? (she points)

BECKETT
Yeah.

LANIE
Well, that’s what we expect to find because the weight of the body pulls the cord into a vertical line.

CASTLE
But?

LANIE
But this other faint ligature mark, see how it runs horizontally across his neck?

BECKETT
He was strangled first.

LANIE
Mmhmm. Then strung up.

CASTLE
So we have a second murder.

LANIE
Well, technically it’s the first murder. Given temperature and decomposition, I’d say he died a day before our lady in the water tank.

RYAN
Beckett.

CASTLE turns to look at RYAN. LANIE gives BECKETT a look and she stops her.

RYAN
So I was going through Blaylock’s recent activity. I found this chat exchange between him and an anonymous user.

BECKETT
(reading) ‘Changed my mind, can’t live like this anymore. Will tell you everything I know. Where can we meet?’

RYAN
The person replies, ‘There’s a place near where I’m staying. Cedric Hotel. Rooftop. At midnight.’

BECKETT
She asked him to meet her up there.

RYAN
She must have thought it was a location she could control.

CASTLE
Uh, guys? Look at what time he sent the message.

RYAN
10PM the night she was murdered.

CASTLE
Right, but according to Lanie’s time of death, Blaylock was already dead.

BECKETT
So this was sent by whoever killed him. He lured her out.

CASTLE
And killed her too.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

BECKETT hangs up her phone.

BECKETT
So the folks at the law firm claim that they have no idea why anyone would murder Blaylock or why Erika was looking for him.

CASTLE
Did they at least tell you why they let Blaylock go?

BECKETT
Only that it was a personal issue.

ESPOSITO
It must have been pretty serious. We checked with friends. Apparently he was a rising star at the firm, until about a year ago when out of the blue he became distant and withdrawn. Marriage fell apart and he started doing drugs. It’s like something happened.

That doesn’t make sense.

BECKETT
So Erika was looking into the firm. Blaylock used to work at the firm. And now they’re both dead. Why?

RYAN
Hey. Just heard back from Erika’s parents. The law firm rang a bell. Turns out that Erika’s best friend from high school interned there last summer. A Pam Bonner.

He hands her a file and photo.

BECKETT
Okay. Maybe she can give us some answers. Where do we find her?

RYAN
(sighs) Uh, Mount Hope Cemetery in Westchester. She was killed last summer in a car crash.

CASTLE
What were the circumstances?

RYAN
Well, there were no witnesses but according to the police report she was driving home from the firm’s summer party. She lost control, crashed into a tree. Autopsy indicates she was intoxicated at the time, but Erika never believed the official account.

BECKETT
Any reason why?

RYAN
Well, she believed that Pam would never drive drunk. And when they found Pam she was wearing high heels and Erika said she never drove in heels.

CASTLE
Three deaths, all leading back to the law firm of Banks and Bauer. (he thinks) Is it just me, or is this starting to smell like a John Grisham novel? A single car accident with no witnesses? Guys, this is a classic conspiracy cover up. Though only a lowly intern, Pam stumbles on to something the firm is doing, something big. Nefarious. She has to be silenced, only after the accident Blaylock can’t take the guilt. Or admit the truth. So his only bastion is to escape the sweet oblivion of drugs.

BECKETT
And then when Erika starts coming around they realize that they’re going to have to act by eliminating them both. But what are they covering up?

RYAN
Whatever it is, the only possible evidence is on Erika’s laptop, which our killer took.

CASTLE
Yeah. (he thinks) Wait, are we sure about that? Erika was meeting Blaylock on the roof, right? A guy, according to the emails, she didn’t know very well. If I’m Erika I’m hiding that laptop.

ESPOSITO
Well, we searched her room. It wasn’t in there.

BECKETT
Wait, do you guys remember the footage from the elevator?

CASTLE
Yes. She went down to the laundry room first.

BECKETT
And Lanie said she found traces of creosote under her fingernails from the boiler room next door.

CASTLE & BECKETT
The laptop’s in the basement.

CASTLE is proud of their teamwork. For BECKETT it’s just a reminder of what she’d have to give up. ESPOSITO catches her forlorn look.

EST – NEW YORK CITY, NIGHTTIME

INT – RESIDENTIAL HOTEL BOILER ROOM

RYAN pops up from the floor. It’s dark and they’re using flashlights to search the room.

RYAN
Man. This was Castle’s theory. How did we draw the short straw?

ESPOSITO
I don’t know. Let me ask you something. You notice anything weird about Beckett?

RYAN
What do you mean?

He jumps on a heater unit to get closer to the ceiling.

ESPOSITO
Well, she’s - she’s different. Something’s off.

RYAN
What are you saying? Like she’s pregnant?

ESPOSITO startles.

ESPOSITO
What are you talking about? Where did that even come from?

RYAN
Well, you said she was acting different. They’re consenting adults –

ESPOSITO
(adamantly) Beckett is not pregnant. C’mon, man.

He goes back to running his hands along the top of the ductwork.

RYAN
What’s so wrong with being pregnant?

ESPOSITO
You know, I can’t even talk to you about this right now.

RYAN
Okay. Well, um … try to get over it before Jenny tells you the news, okay?

That surprises ESPOSITO. RYAN grins.

ESPOSITO
What? (RYAN grins wider) Are you serious? Wow, congratulations, man. That’s great!

RYAN
Thanks, bro.

There’s suddenly a happiness to their work. ESPOSITO continues to feel the ductwork.

ESPOSITO
Hold up. There’s something up here.

He pulls down and bag and opens it.

ESPOSITO
What’s that?

RYAN
That’s a laptop.

INT – BECKETT’S APARTMENT

BECKETT is on the phone while she’s chopping vegetables for dinner.

BECKETT
No, that’s great. Thank you. (she hangs up; to CASTLE) So they found the laptop.

CASTLE
I knew it. So what was on it?

He continues to set the table, putting out dinnerware and moving things from her table.

BECKETT
Well, the hard drive is encrypted so techs are going through it now.

CASTLE
Well, somewhere on that computer is a conspiracy of lies so heinous, so deadly –

He picks up her jacket and a paper falls out. He picks it up and reads it.

CASTLE
What’s this?

She keeps chopping vegetables.

BECKETT
What’s what?

CASTLE
(he holds up a paper) Boarding pass.

BECKETT
(her smile falls) Castle –

BECKETT
(confused) Did you fly to DC yesterday?

She puts down the knife and walks toward him.

BECKETT
Yes. I did.

CASTLE
Why?

BECKETT takes a long time to answer.

BECKETT
I was invited down for an interview.

He’s not sure what that means.

CASTLE
What kind of interview?

BECKETT
For a position. With the Federal Task Force.

CASTLE
I’m sorry, you interviewed for another job in another city … and you didn’t tell me?

BECKETT
I didn’t tell you about it because it was just an interview and I knew you would be upset.

She’s trying to tread carefully but it’s not working.

CASTLE
(scoffs) Oh … yeah. Yeah. You’re damn right I’m upset.

BECKETT
Castle, I just wanted to see what was out there. What’s wrong with that?

CASTLE
What’s wrong with it is that you hid it from me. In fact, you lied about it. I wouldn’t do that to you.

BECKETT
Castle, this isn’t about you. (off his questioning look) This is about me. This is about my life.

CASTLE
So you’re seriously considering this?

BECKETT
Yes! This is a wonderful opportunity. It’ll be a chance to do more.

CASTLE
(nods) Without me.

She’s momentarily speechless.

BECKETT
Castle, please don’t do this. Don’t make this about us.

CASTLE
I’m sorry, tell me how this isn’t about us. You get this job, you move to DC, I’ll never see you. That’s pretty much the end of our relationship, isn’t it?

BECKETT
(shakes her head) You don’t know that. And I probably won’t even get the job.

CASTLE
That’s not the point. (he glares) The point is, you knew what this could mean. And it didn’t occur to you to include me. (he realizes) Or worse, it did occur to you. And you chose not to. Now what does that say about us? (he moves to grab his coat) Not much, you ask me.

BECKETT sighs before she turns to face him.

BECKETT
Castle.

CASTLE
I can’t be here right now.

He takes his jacket and walks past her to the door. She sighs but she doesn’t try to stop him.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

BECKETT walks from the elevator to her desk. She’s moving with purpose.

ESPOSITO
Hey.

BECKETT
Hey.

He notices her demeanor.

ESPOSITO
You okay?

She throws her stuff on her desk.

BECKETT
Yep.

ESPOSITO
Where’s Castle?

BECKETT
I don’t know.

She grabs her coffee from the day before and heads for the break room. ESPOSITO follows her. Something’s up.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BREAK ROOM

BECKETT
We had a fight, okay?

ESPOSITO
Like a regular fight, or –

She splashes the old coffee into the sink. It makes a mess. She turns to him and gives him a pointed look.

ESPOSITO
How bad?

BECKETT is silent. She just sighs and gives him another look. He nods.

RYAN
Hey guys. We got something.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT WORK ROOM

TORY
Once your victim hacked into the law firm, she started with the basics – emails, calendars, payroll. Then she moved on to client and personal files.

ESPOSITO
Do we know what she was looking for?

RYAN
Hard to say. But for the last few nights Erika became very focused on the firm’s accounting department.

ESPOSITO
The accounting department?

RYAN
It appears that she was looking into Ian Blaylock’s billable hours records.

TORY brings up a statement.

TORY
Focusing exclusively on one week last summer.

BECKETT
Wait a minute. That’s the same week as Pamela Bonner’s car accident.

RYAN
Right. Now, check it out. The highway patrol determined that Pam Bonner’s accident occurred between 1:30 and 2AM. And Ian Blaylock billed for an incoming phone call from a client at 1:45AM.

ESPOSITO
So you think one of his clients might have been involved. Maybe ran her off the road.

RYAN
According to the highway patrol it was a one car accident.

BECKETT
You guys, what if Erika was right? What if Pamela wasn’t driving drunk or in her high heels? In fact, what if Pamela wasn’t driving at all?

ESPOSITO
Someone else was driving. Someone who crashed and didn’t want to be blamed for Pam’s death, so he put her behind the wheel, fled the scene.

BECKETT
And then called their lawyer. (to TORI) Who made that phone call to Blaylock?

TORI
For security the firm replaces its clients names with codes. This one’s 47BGO.

BECKETT
Okay, the firm’s never going to give up that information. Let’s see where else that code shows up. Cross reference it. See if we can identify it from there.

TORY
You don’t have to look too far. Blaylock billed that very same client for a round of golf the day after the car crash.

ESPOSITO
Well, that would be a perfect place to discuss details. No one would overhear them.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

BECKETT
So according to the starter at the pro shop, Blaylock was playing golf with another member, a Colin Rigsdale III.

RYAN
Of the Rigsdale political family?

BECKETT
Yeah.

She pulls up some information on her computer.

RYAN
Word is Daddy’s grooming him for a state senate run.

ESPOSITO
Not if this gets out. A fatal car crash with a college chick? No, he’d be done.

BECKETT
That’s why he was covering it up.

RYAN
With Blaylock’s help – ‘til the guilt set in.

BECKETT
Then Erika started poking around and people started dying.

RYAN
It says here Rigsdale is still represented by Banks and Bauer.

BECKETT
Give them a call. Tell them I’m coming.

ESPOSITO
Right.

They leave BECKETT.

RYAN
Hey. What’s going on? Where’s Castle?

ESPOSITO
Don’t ask.

EST – NEW YORK CITY, DAYTIME

INT – BANKS AND BAUER LAW FIRM

BECKETT
Thank you for meeting with me, Mr. Rigsdale.

He shakes her hand and BECKETT sits across from him.

COLIN RIGSDALE III
Well, when Jessica told me someone hacked into their system I was of course concerned. I think we all know what my political opponents might do if they managed to access confidential information.

BANKS
So the girl who hacked into our system, did you find out what she was after?

BECKETT
Yes. And we also believe we know why she was killed. Are you familiar with a girl named Pamela Bonner?

RIGSDALE blanches.

BANKS
Detective, what is this about?

BECKETT ignores her.

BECKETT
Mr. Rigsdale?

RIGSDALE
(shakes his head) Name’s not familiar.

BECKETT
Really? I understand that she was an intern here at the firm last year, isn’t that correct? And isn’t it also correct that you attended the Banks and Bauer summer associate party last year?

BANKS
Don’t answer that. (to BECKETT) Detective, what are you doing?

BECKETT
The same thing that my victim, Erika Albrook, was doing. Trying to figure out how her best friend, Pamela Bonner, actually died.

BANKS
Her death was an accident.

BECKETT
Really? Then why do we have a record of Ian Blaylock, Mr. Rigsdale’s attorney at the time, receiving a phone call from him at 1:45 that night?

She lets BANKS see that evidence.

BANKS
Detective, this is privileged information. It’s inadmissible.

BECKETT
And we’re not in court.

BANKS
This meeting is over. You need to leave. Now.

BANKS stands. BECKETT gives RIGSDALE one last scathing look before she leaves.

INT – CASTLE’S LOFT

CASTLE
Just tell me. How am I supposed to trust her? How am I even supposed to – to be in a relationship with her if she won’t let me in?

He’s pacing the living room.

MARTHA RODGERS
Well, Richard –

CASTLE
After everything that we’ve been through together, I – I just don’t understand.

MARTHA
I hate to say it, kiddo, but I do. Look, the truth is, Katherine is a bright, ambitious woman. She should be interviewing for that job.

That’s not what he wants to hear.

CASTLE
Whose side are you on?

MARTHA
You want her to put you first when neither one of you knows where the relationship is going. Do you know how absurd that is? I mean, that is as bad as your not signing that check for Alexis’s program.

CASTLE
This isn’t about me.

MARTHA
Are you sure? I know you. You do not hold back. Except this thing with Katherine. It took you what, three years to tell her how you felt, another year to act on it, and now, at the first sign of trouble, you’re ready to run. Why? (he doesn’t answer) Now, you’re having a good time. You both are and I know you say you love her, but darling, this is who she is. So is it possible that the reason you have held back is because, somewhere deep down inside, you don’t think this is going to really work?

That’s exactly what he didn’t need to hear.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

BECKETT gets off the elevator and walks toward her desk. She doesn’t stop when RYAN and ESPOSITO walk up to her.

ESPOSITO
I take it he didn’t confess?

BECKETT
I didn’t need him to. I just needed to see his eyes. It’s him.

They follow her.

RYAN
Well, the evidence begs to differ. His fingerprints are in the system from a political protest a decade ago. I ran them against the partial. It’s not a match. And the papers put him at his family’s compound in Maine during Erika’s murder.

BECKETT
Yeah well, he’d never do this himself. And hiring someone else is too risky for a public figure. He’d - he’d get a close associate or a trusted friend to do it, so why don’t we dig into his life, find out who.

Her phone rings.

BECKETT
Beckett.

FREEDMAN
Detective. Deputy Director Anthony Freedman calling. (she stops) Do you remember? From the interview.

BECKETT
Uh, yes, sir. Yes, I do. What can I do for you?

FREEDMAN
You can say yes. Detective, you got the job.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

RYAN
Hey. Where’s Beckett?

ESPOSITO
She took off about an hour ago. Something’s going on but she wouldn’t tell me what.

RYAN
Huh. Well, I was looking into Rigsdale’s known associates. I came across this photo. (he hands ESPOSITO a photo) That is Martin Tillage, Rigsdale’s half-brother and the black sheep of the family. Look familiar?

ESPOSITO
Yeah, we interviewed this guy. He was one of the guests at the Cedric.

RYAN
He must have checked in to try to find her and hung around so his departure didn’t look suspicious. He’s gotta be our guy.

ESPOSITO nods.

ESPOSITO
I’ll have uniforms pick him up. See if you can find Beckett.

RYAN
Yeah.

INT – BECKETT’S CAR

She’s taken some time to think in her car. This is a big decision. Finally she gets out.

INT – DINER

She’s met with her dad.

JIM BECKETT
Sounds like a great offer.

BECKETT
Yeah, it is.

JIM
Your mom would be proud. Hell, I’m proud.

BECKETT smiles, but she’s not really happy.

JIM
So… what are you going to do?

BECKETT
I don’t know, Dad. (she waits) It’s like I’m standing at a crossroads and I have to choose between two possible futures.

JIM
What do you think you have to choose?

BECKETT
Because Dad, he’s right. If I take this job, then there’s not going to be time for anyone else, and then if I don’t –

JIM
It’ll be because of him and you’ll end up resenting him for it.

BECKETT
Or – (she looks down) – worse. Dad, I don’t know what we have. I don’t know if it’s real. It’s like we’ve been doing this dance for the past five years and … I mean, what happens when the music stops? That if all we were in love with was the dance?

JIM
You know, your whole life you’ve never had a relationship go this far. You know, right around here you always end them. Now why is that? Look, Katie, I know you. When you get scared you hide in your work. And I just want to be sure whatever decision you make, it’s because it’s what you want. Not because you’re afraid.

She forces a smile.

BECKETT
(whispered) This job. It’s what I want.

JIM
Then tell him.

BECKETT
(sighs) He’s gonna hate me, Dad.

JIM
That’s something you’re going to have to live with.

She’s still not sure if she can, but before she can respond, her phone beeps. It’s a text from the precinct. “suspect in custody – ready for interrogation”.

BECKETT
(softly) My last case. I better go end it.

She sighs heavily.

INT – CASTLE’S LOFT

CASTLE signs a check for ALEXIS.

CASTLE
There you are. I’m sorry it took me so long to write it. Go have fun.

ALEXIS
(smiles) Thanks, Dad.

He caps his pen and forces a smile. She stops and turns back to him.

ALEXIS
Dad, are you okay?

CASTLE
Yeah.

ALEXIS
You seem sad.

CASTLE
No. I’m fine.

He’s not but she wants to make it better.

ALEXIS
It’s only Costa Rica. I’ll be back before you know it.

CASTLE
Oh, that’s sweet. But no, it’s not about that. It’s uh – something your grandmother told me. There comes a point in our lives when we have to stop fooling ourselves into thinking life’s going to be the way we want it to be and start seeing things for how they really are.

EST – NEW YORK CITY, DAYTIME

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT INTERROGATION ROOM

MARTIN
So I was there. So what? I needed a place to stay for a couple of nights. Is that a crime?

BECKETT
No, but killing a girl is. What did you brother promise you, Martin? Respectability for the black sheep, a place at the family table –

MARTIN
I told you. I’ve never seen this girl before in my life. You’re wasting your time.

That sets her off. She looks at him for a long moment.

BECKETT
Do you have any idea how many people have sat across that table and confessed their sins to me? (he’s silent) What makes you think that you’re any different? Any smarter? (she looks around the interrogation room) You’ve only been in this room for one hour. But this room – (she shakes her head) - this room has been my life. My home. And I will not let you sit there and lie to me in my own home. (she faces him and presents him with a paper) This is a partial print found at the crime scene in the victim’s blood. It’s a match to yours, Martin. Am I still wasting my time?

She pulls out a chair and sits across from him.

BECKETT
I’ve got enough to convict you. So the question is, how many years of your own life are you going to sacrifice for someone else’s future? Or are you ready to deal?

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

BECKETT shuts the door to the interrogation room. She walks through the bullpen and takes in the room; her desk, RYAN’S desk, ESPOSITO’S desk. LT and every other uniform that she’s been able to work with. Her home.

RYAN and ESPOSITO walk up.

BECKETT
He’s prepared to give a statement implicating his brother in both murders as well as the accident. Would you guys mind taking it?

She hands ESPOSITO the file and walks past them.

ESPOSITO
Yo Kate.

She stops.

BECKETT
Yeah.

ESPOSITO
What’s up?

RYAN
Yeah, what’s going on?

BECKETT
(sighs and looks down) Look, there’s something that I have to tell you guys, but there’s someone else that I have to tell first.

She leaves them. They’re worried but trying not to show it.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT ELEVATOR

BECKETT hits the down button to call the elevator before she calls CASTLE. He answers after the first ring.

CASTLE
Castle.

BECKETT
It’s me. We need to talk.

CASTLE
Yeah, we do.

EXT – PARK
It’s the same park where they went to talk after she left him for the summer when she got shot. Where she decided to be with him. She gets out of her car and walks across the grass. CASTLE is already waiting. He doesn’t acknowledge her when she takes the swing beside him. It’s a long moment before anyone speaks.

BECKETT
I’m sorry. (she sighs) I shouldn’t have kept secrets.

CASTLE
It’s who you are. You don’t let people in. I’ve had to scratch and claw for every inch.

BECKETT
Castle -

CASTLE
Please let me finish. (she stays silent) I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about us. About our relationship, what we have, where we’re headed. (he shakes his head) I’ve decided I want more.

She nods against the obvious line and tries to protect herself.

CASTLE
We both deserve more.

It takes her a second to respond. His tone hurts more than she thought.

BECKETT
I agree.

CASTLE
So whatever happens, and whatever you decide, Katherine Houghton Beckett – (he steels himself and drops off his swing onto his knee and holds out a ring) – will you marry me?

It’s definitely not what she was expecting. Her jaw drops.

(TO BE CONTINUED)

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