8x01 Transcript

Transcribed by:
McManda
CASTLE
EPISODE 8x01
"XY"


INT – CLUB

A WOMAN grabs her drink from the bar. She heads for a seat in the recessed seating across the room, smiling when a MAN sits across from her.

MAN
Haven’t we met somewhere before?

WOMAN
Really? That’s your line?

MAN
It’s not a line. I saw you this morning at The Coffee Bean, and then this afternoon at the gym, and now here. Why are you following me?

She sets her glass down on a low table.

WOMAN
So I could do this.

She stands and crosses to where he’s sitting. She straddles his lap and leans in for a kiss. But then he jerks upward and gasps. She’s stabbed him in the stomach.

WOMAN
Shh. Shh, shh, shh. It’s okay. Your aorta’s been severed so this will all be over very soon. Don’t fight it. Just look into these pretty brown eyes and drift away.

She watches him die. She presses a kiss to his forehead before she leaves.

EST – NEW YORK CITY, MORNING

INT – CASTLE’S LOFT

KATE BECKETT checks her outfit in the mirror. She’s nervous. But she doesn’t dwell on it for long because RICHARD CASTLE walks into the room...with a wisp of smoke rising behind his head.

KATE BECKETT
Babe? Did you set your hair on fire again?

RICHARD CASTLE
That was one time. And no. No, no. I’m just, uh - so good looking I’m literally smoking hot.

She tries to look around him.

BECKETT
Okay, what do you have?

He holds out a hand to stop her.

CASTLE
Ah.

She tries the other way.

BECKETT
Let’s just see.

CASTLE
Just a –

BECKETT
Just a little –

CASTLE
Wait a second.

BECKETT
Okay. Okay.

He pulls a cupcake with a lit sparkler from behind his back. It says “Congratulations Captain Beckett” on it.

BECKETT
Oh. (she laughs, pleased) Oh my God.

CASTLE
First day. How’re you feeling?

BECKETT
Um … exhilarated and frightened and everything in between. I wish you were coming with.

CASTLE
Oh, sweetie, we talked about this. What am I going to do? Sit outside your office and fetch you coffee?

BECKETT
Yeah, you’re great at fetching. I trained you well.

He tries to sidestep her joke.

CASTLE
This is a good change for us.

BECKETT
(unconvinced) Is it?

CASTLE
Yes. Absolutely. And besides, with all the money I spent on the remodeling of my PI office I’ve gotta take some cases so I can write that place off. (she laughs) Now, come on. Dig in.

BECKETT
No. I’m so nervous I couldn’t eat.

CASTLE
Who said anything about eating? I said, dig in.

She gives him a questioning look but she takes the banner and the sparkler off the top.

BECKETT
Okay … (she prepares) Like, dig dig in, right?

CASTLE
Yeah, yeah, yeah.

BECKETT
All right. Okay. Um …

CASTLE
Full on.

She digs her fingers into the cupcake.

CASTLE
Keep going.

She pulls out a jeweler’s box.

CASTLE
Like that.

BECKETT
Wow.

She opens it and gasps. There’s a diamond bracelet inside.

CASTLE
What? That was supposed to be a decoder ring.

BECKETT
Oh my God, this is so beautiful.

She studies the bracelet. It’s inscribed with “Always”. Her phone rings.

BECKETT
Um, would you mind getting that?

CASTLE
Yeah, yeah. Here. (he hands her a napkin) Captain Beckett’s phone.

She laughs at the new title.

MAN
(on the phone) Uh… Captain Beckett, please.

CASTLE
Of course. Please wait one moment.

BECKETT
Trade you.

She holds out the napkin.

CASTLE
Here you go.

BECKETT
Thank you. (she turns away) Yeah, this is Beckett.

CASTLE tries to shoot the napkin into a trash by his desk like a basketball. He misses. He glances at BECKETT but she hasn’t noticed. He scrambles to throw it away before she notices.

BECKETT
Uh huh. (she listens) Okay. Understood. Yeah, you know what? I’m not interested, so why don’t you take me off the list? (pause) Thanks. (she hangs up) Telemarketers. I swear, there should be tougher laws against them.

CASTLE
Well, if you hadn’t turned down the chance to run for state senate you could have passed some.

He fastens the bracelet around her wrist. She admires it.

BECKETT
Wow. I love this. I’m going to cherish this. Thank you.

She leans in for a kiss.

BECKETT
Okay, I have got a meeting at 1PP.

She dips her finger into the frosting of the cupcake.

CASTLE
Knock ‘em dead.

She comes back for another kiss.

BECKETT
Thanks.

She slips out the door. CASTLE watches proudly.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

JAVIER ESPOSITO carries a box of his stuff. KEVIN RYAN rushes forward. He’s trying to beat ESPOSITO to BECKETT’S old desk. He slides his stuff across the desk before ESPOSITO can put his box down.

JAVIER ESPOSITO
Bro, what are you doing? You know I’ve got dibs on Beckett’s desk.

KEVIN RYAN
I will play you Knife, Gun, Kevlar for it.

ESPOSITO
Let’s do this.

They prepare and shoot.

ESPOSITO
(simultaneously, with RYAN) Gun.

RYAN
(simultaneously, with ESPOSITO) Knife.

ESPOSITO
You fool. You brought a knife to a gunfight. (he shoots) Blam.

RYAN
Two out of three.

ESPOSITO
No way. Kick rocks.

ESPOSITO pushes his box across the desk. RYAN begrudgingly takes his box back to his desk.

RYAN
Javi, we’re pathetic.

ESPOSITO
No, you’re pathetic. You’re the one who got the crappy desk.

RYAN
No, look, I mean, here we are, moving desks. Everyone else is moving up. Gates, she’s the new deputy chief. Beckett, she’s the new Captain.

ESPOSITO
So?

RYAN
So when’s it going to be our turn? Get promoted? Make more money?

ESPOSITO
Bro, where’s this coming from?

RYAN steps closer.

RYAN
Jenny’s pregnant again. We found out last night.

ESPOSITO
Oh, wow. That’s great. Congratulations!

RYAN doesn’t share his enthusiasm.

ESPOSITO
That is great, right?

RYAN
Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah. It’s wonderful. But … it’s also another mouth to feed, another body to clothe. And don’t get me started on college tuition.

ESPOSITO
(sighs) Kevin, can’t you just for one second celebrate before you start stressing about money again? Sometimes it’s good to just breathe –

RYAN reads the text message he gets.

RYAN
Yes! (he stands) Caught ourselves a homicide. Fingers crossed for overtime pay.

RYAN rushes away. ESPOSITO sighs. He’s slow to follow.

ESPOSITO
Bro, there’s something wrong with you.

EST – NEW YORK CITY, DAYTIME

INT – RICHARD CASTLE INVESTIGATIONS

CASTLE goes to unlock the door but it’s already unlocked. He enters cautiously and is met with a large man.

CASTLE
Can I help you?

FRANCO MANCINI
Sure as hell can, buddy. (he brightens) I’m Franco Mancini! Nice to finally meet you. Bring it on in. Come here.

He steps forward and hugs CASTLE. CASTLE is confused.

MANCINI
Great news, huh Ricky? My wife’s sleeping with my brother, not my personal chef. What a relief.

He heads for the door happily.

CASTLE
Uh, I’m sorry, you – your wife is having an affair with your brother and you’re happy about it?

MANCINI
Hell, I’ve got four other brothers. But my chef is one in a million. His specialty clams are to die for. Thanks again for solving my case, Ricky. (he pats CASTLE’S cheek) You and your associate.

MANCINI leaves.

CASTLE
Associate?

INT – RICHARD CASTLE INVESTIGATIONS

CASTLE heads further into his office.

ALEXIS CASTLE
Can you wait out in reception? I’ll be with you in a sec.

She doesn’t look up from her spot behind CASTLE’S desk.

CASTLE
Uh … Alexis, I don’t want to say you have some explaining to do, but I think you have some explaining to do.

ALEXIS
Wait, did I forget to tell you I’ve been working PI cases for you?

CASTLE
Must have slipped your mind.

She gestures around her.

ALEXIS
Hey, didn’t the guys do a fantastic job remodeling the place?

He swoons excitedly.

CASTLE
I know, right? (he realizes what he’s doing) But you’re changing the subject.

ALEXIS
I know, but check it out. (she heads for the bookcase) Pull on the complete works of Edgar Allen Poe and …

She does. The wall moves aside to reveal a hidden panic room.

CASTLE
Oh my God, this turned out so much cooler than I thought it would! (he takes a quick lap of the sleek room before he heads back out) Wait, did they do the thing on the desk with the –

ALEXIS
(nods) Mmhmm.

He sits at his desk. He slaps his hand on the top and waits. A gun flies out but he misses the catch. ALEXIS tries not to smirk.

CASTLE
Obviously the spring has a trajectory … I’ll make some … okay, back to you. Why – why are you working my cases?

ALEXIS
Truth is, it’s all your fault.

CASTLE
You set up shop in my office, behind my back, and it’s my fault?

ALEXIS
Exactly. A month ago when you sent me here to open the place for your foreman a potential client came by. I was intrigued, so I sort of said I was your associate and then I kind of solved the case. Since then I’ve closed three others.

CASTLE
Alexis, you can’t just – (he realizes what she’s said) – you’ve closed four cases? That’s more than I have.

ALEXIS
I know. Step your game up.

She heads for the door.

CASTLE
What about your college courses?

ALEXIS
Oh please, I’ve got that handled. Plus I forged your signature to make sure I got school credit for being an intern.

He phone beeps.

CASTLE
Okay, that’s Esposito. I have to take this. But we are not done talking.

ALEXIS
Good. We need to discuss my profit participation in the company.

ESPOSITO
Castle –

CASTLE
(flustered) Uh … Esposito! How’re you doing, buddy? How’s the new boss lady treating you?

ESPOSITO
She’s ignoring me.

RYAN
Just like every other woman in his life.

ESPOSITO
(to RYAN) Shut up. (to CASTLE) So your wife is not answering her cell and we need her authorization to put more officers down here. Is she with you?

CASTLE
Uh, sorry. She’s at a meeting at 1PP. What’s going on?

RYAN
We’re working on a case, you interested?

CASTLE
I’d love to! But I’m a little busy with my thriving PI business.

ALEXIS
Not really. I closed all the cases.

CASTLE
(quickly) But since you’re desperate I’ll rearrange my hectic schedule and uh … lend you my expertise. (he hangs up then, to ALEXIS) Come on.

She smirks and heads for the door.

EST – NEW YORK CITY, DAYTIME

INT – RENOVATED THEATER

CASTLE
Whoa. Looks like a Tarantino film came to life in here.

He steps around the sea of numbers and bodies.

RYAN
Yeah. Now meet our stars. (he points out the bodies) This is Greg Minoso. Over here we’ve got Jake Fitz. And finally we come to Dustin Chambers.

ESPOSITO
Check this out. They were each packing identical .40 cals.

CASTLE
I take it they weren’t part of the construction crew?

RYAN
No, renovations aren't scheduled to begin until next week.

CASTLE
Okay, so … what happened?

ESPOSITO
Truth is, we don’t know yet.

RYAN
What we do know is that gunfire was heard around 9:07AM and continued for a minute or two.

CASTLE
So they shot each other?

LANIE PARISH
Nope. Their wounds are from a downward angle, maybe 45 degrees, which means they probably all were shot from up there.

She points to the balcony.

INT – RENOVATED THEATER, BALCONY

RYAN picks through some bullet casings.

LANIE
Yep, the shooter was definitely up here.

RYAN
9 millimeter.

ESPOSITO
All right. Must have capped them from up here: boom, boom, boom, and then boogied out that exit.

CASTLE starts to explore. He stops short when he steps on something that squishes.

CASTLE
Ooh, guys.

LANIE pulls back the sheet.

CASTLE
Ooh.

RYAN
Looks like our shooter took a bullet from one of the dead guys down there, falls back, grabs the drop cloth, and it comes with him.

CASTLE stops paying attention. He examines the pool of blood closer. Something hard catches his attention. He uses a pen to lift it from the ground. It’s BECKETT’S new bracelet and it’s covered in blood.

ESPOSITO
All right, let’s contact hospitals.

CASTLE
This is Beckett’s.

RYAN, LANIE, and ESPOSITO stop short.

LANIE
Wait, what did you just say?

He can’t stop looking at the bracelet.

CASTLE
I gave it to her this morning. She was here.

He turns to examine the massacre scene. Something is very, very wrong.

INT – BECKETT’S OFFICE

CASTLE is alone in BECKETT’S new office. He turns when ESPOSITO comes in. ESPOSITO is serious.

CASTLE
Tell me.

ESPOSITO
Lanie said that blood was a match to Beckett’s.

It’s what he doesn’t want to hear.

CASTLE
But there was so much blood. Okay … okay. Look, this is Beckett we’re talking about.

ESPOSITO
Yeah, she’s a tough as they come.

CASTLE
Exactly. So she must have shot those three guys and since she hasn’t contacted us we can assume that their partners abducted her. But why? We need to dig into the backgrounds of those dead shooters. We need to figure out who they’re working with –

ESPOSITO
That’s the thing. We can’t. Their IDs are all fake. And their prints aren’t in the system. Castle, do you have any idea what Beckett was doing at that theater?

CASTLE
She was supposed to be at 1PP.

ESPOSITO
I talked to Gates. Beckett didn’t have anything on the books.

CASTLE
So she lied to me?

RYAN
Guys? I got a hit on one of the dead shooters’ credit cards. He rented a short term apartment through an online site.

CASTLE rushes out the door.

INT – NEW YORK CITY APARTMENT

ESPOSITO leads the rush down the hallway. He wastes no time knocking down the door.

RYAN
NYPD!

They sweep the apartment.

ESPOSITO
Ryan! I’ve got dead space.

RYAN runs forward to take ESPOSITO’S place.

RYAN
Castle, stay put.

ESPOSITO
NYPD!

CASTLE looks around. The apartment is trashed. He steps forward to open the curtains and let some light in and promptly gets punched in the face. HAYLEY SHIPTON runs for the door.

CASTLE
Wait!

He grabs her arm and pushes her up against the door.

CASTLE
Where’s Beckett?

She knees him in the groin and pushes him away.

ESPOSITO
NYPD! Don’t move!

RYAN
Get on the floor right now!

ESPOSITO
On the ground!

RYAN
On the floor, right now!

She moves her hands slowly to her head.

HAYLEY SHIPTON
(laughs) Have you seen the floor? If it’s all the same to you boys, let’s do this standing.

CASTLE struggles for breath.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT OBSERVATION ROOM

CASTLE walks in. HAYLEY leans against the mirror, waiting for RYAN and ESPOSITO. He studies her. She turns to look at the glass like she can see through it, like she can see CASTLE on the other side, and winks. He doesn’t get a chance to study her more because RYAN and ESPOSITO walk in.

ESPOSITO
Have a seat, Miss Shipton.

HAYLEY
Oh no, please. Call me Hayley. I insist anyone that’s frisked me use my given name.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT INTERROGATION ROOM

ESPOSITO
Okay. Hayley. My partner and I really enjoyed reading your file.

HAYLEY
Oh, sweetie. I’m so much more than words on paper.

RYAN
Born and raised in East London, over in the borough of Hackney.

ESPOSITO
Rough area. Don’t they have an area nicknamed “The Murder Mile”?

HAYLEY
Well, yes. But it’s not without its charms.

RYAN
Just like you. Love your accent, by the way. Very posh. Where’d you learn to speak like that?

HAYLEY smirks. She knows the game they’re playing.

ESPOSITO
Not from the slums she grew up in. And definitely not from your mom, who’s at the tail end of a twenty year prison bid.

RYAN
Ah, not wanting to follow in mom’s footsteps you join the Metropolitan Police Service.

ESPOSITO
And that was an epic fail.

RYAN
Yeah, they booted you out for your tendency to cut legal corners.

HAYLEY
Allegedly.

RYAN
You hung a dealer out of a window in order to get a confession.

HAYLEY
Did I hang him out the window? Or did I save him from falling out said window? It’s hard to tell. It’s even harder to prove.

RYAN
Well, lucky for us we don’t have to prove that you were hiding in that apartment.

HAYLEY
Hiding? No. Lost. I was looking for a Starbucks, actually. Usually they’re so easy to find.

ESPOSITO
How do you know the guy who rented that apartment?

HAYLEY
Unlike the imbeciles who usually sit in this chair, I know my rights. So I would like to leave now.

She stands. ESPOSITO pushes her back down.

ESPOSITO
No. I don’t think so.

RYAN
We’ve got a missing NYPD captain, as well as three dead bodies, so you should start talking right now.

She stands again.

HAYLEY
Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. I don’t know anything about –

ESPOSITO
Oh, come on, Hayley. You can do better than that.

HAYLEY
Look. I am just a freelance security specialist. I was hired by an insurance company to catch a hacker who’s been stealing social security numbers from their system.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT OBSERVATION ROOM

CASTLE listens to HAYLEY.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT INTERROGATION ROOM

RYAN
Why were you in that apartment?

HAYLEY
I have been following fake IDs made from the stolen social security numbers. And last night I got an alert that five of them are being used together in New York City. Caught my attention so I flew in to investigate.

ESPOSITO
Five IDs? Are you sure it was five?

HAYLEY
Four men and a woman. Greg Minoso, Jake Fitz, Ty Dade, Dustin Chambers, and Susan Emery.

She knows things she shouldn't and it makes them question her.

ESPOSITO
Where were you at 9AM this morning?

HAYLEY
On final approach into JFK and my flight didn’t land until 9:30. And that is all I know. Now, go and check my alibi so I can get the hell out of here.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT OBSERVATION ROOM

Something doesn’t sit well with CASTLE.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

CASTLE watches as HAYLEY is escorted to the elevator by OFFICER VELASQUEZ. She presses the call button before she leaves.

HAYLEY
Thanks.

HAYLEY stares in CASTLE’S direction.

CASTLE
(low, to RYAN) She’s hiding something.

RYAN
I know.

CASTLE
We can’t just let her leave.

RYAN
Her alibi is solid. We have to.

ESPOSITO
Ryan!

RYAN
Yeah?

RYAN leaves CASTLE.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

CASTLE approaches HAYLEY.

HAYLEY
(sighs) I put you down once. I won’t hesitate to do it again.

CASTLE
My name is Richard Castle. That missing captain is my wife.

HAYLEY
I didn’t know. I’m sorry.

CASTLE
Keep your sorry. Just give me your help. There’s more to this story than you’re telling us. Now she’s been injured and abducted.

HAYLEY
I don’t know anything about that.

CASTLE
Name your price. Anything you say I’ll pay it. I just want my wife back.

The elevator dings.

HAYLEY
I hope you find her.

She backs into the elevator and leaves.

ESPOSITO
Yo! Unis found a stolen van with blood in it by a dry cleaners on 23rd Street.

CASTLE
Any sign of Beckett?

RYAN
Officers found the owner locked in the back. They said a woman matching Beckett’s description was there.

INT – DRY CLEANER'S

UNIFORMS are already there and searching for clues.

RYAN
Hi. I’m Detective Ryan. This is Detective Esposito. This is Mr. Castle.

ESPOSITO
Can you tell us what happened here?

DRYCLEANER
Uh, a lady and man burst in. She said she was cop. Bleeding everywhere. Big mess. (she points behind her) Those are her clothes.

They definitely look like the clothes BECKETT was wearing that morning.

DRYCLEANER
She told man to lock me in bathroom. He did. And that was it.

CASTLE
Wait, she told him? You’re saying she was here of her own volition, not as a hostage?

He pulls out his phone and pulls up a photo of BECKETT.

DRYCLEANER
I was hostage. She was in charge. (she nods at the photo of BECKETT that CASTLE shows her) Yeah, that’s here.

ESPOSITO
Okay, this man that she was with, can you describe him?

DRYCLEANER
Uh, late 20s, East Indian, had beard.

ESPOSITO
Did you catch his name?

DRYCLEANER
No. But he was in kind of bad shape, too. Headaches, dizzy, said he needed to eat. She told him he probably should have gotten breakfast instead of calling her –

CASTLE realizes.

CASTLE
Beckett got a call from someone this morning.

RYAN
Do you know who she was talking to?

CASTLE
She said it was a telemarketer. (he pushes past them to look at BECKETT’S clothes) What is she doing? What the hell is going on?

INT – DRYCLEANER’S

CASTLE holds up a bloody piece of thread and a bloody needle.

CASTLE
All right, let’s think. Beckett gets a call from a mystery man. Can we trace the phone?

ESPOSITO
(shrugs) Already checked. Call came from a burner phone.

CASTLE
(sighs) Damnit. All right. She must have met this guy at the theater. Clearly they were ambushed. Beckett gets shot, but she manages to take three of them out and then she and the man escape.

ESPOSITO
But she didn’t call for backup?

RYAN
Yeah. Why wouldn’t she reach out to us?

CASTLE
Guys, the woman just sewed herself up with a needle and thread. Clearly something’s going on. She’s afraid to contact anyone.

RYAN
But what? And – and what could it be that would cause her to react like this?

CASTLE
Whatever it is it has to do with this man. We find the man, we find Beckett.

ESPOSITO nods.

RYAN
All right. I’ll have CSU dust this place for prints. Maybe we’ll get an ID on this guy.

CASTLE
Right.

ESPOSITO
I’ll get the drycleaner to sit with a sketch artist.

CASTLE’S phone rings. He answers.

CASTLE
Hey, Alexis, listen, something –

ALEXIS
Dad, come back to the office now.

CASTLE
What’s going on?

ALEXIS
Just hurry. And come alone.

CASTLE
Right. (he hangs up, then to RYAN and ESPOSITO) I’ll meet you back at the station.

ESPOSITO
All right.

EST – NEW YORK CITY, DAYTIME

INT – RICHARD CASTLE INVESTIGATIONS

CASTLE
Alexis?

ALEXIS
Dad? We’re in here.

He pauses.

CASTLE
We? Beckett?

He rushes into his office. But it’s not BECKETT that makes up the “we”. It’s HAYLEY.

HAYLEY
That’s it, that’s it.

ALEXIS
Yeah?

HAYLEY
Yes.

CASTLE’S face hardens.

CASTLE
What the hell’s going on here?

HAYLEY
Oh, I hope you don’t mind. I’m just giving her some PI lessons.

ALEXIS
Hayley was teaching me the art of manipulating men. It’s all about confidence and eye contact.

HAYLEY
Yeah, if you can entice a man with your gaze you can lie, steal, cheat, what have you.

CASTLE
My wife is out there fighting for her life. Why are you wasting my time?

ALEXIS
Wait, what? (to HAYLEY) Why didn’t you tell me?

HAYLEY
Sorry. I figured it wasn’t my place. (to CASTLE) Now, look, Rick. You asked for my help. You want it or not?

CASTLE
What’s the catch? Because I’m thinking with you there’s always a catch.

HAYLEY
There’s only one. No cops.

CASTLE
Why not?

HAYLEY
Differing agendas. The cops serve and protect the city. I serve and protect me.

She holds out her hand. He hesitates, but he shakes it anyway.

CASTLE
Fine. No cops.

HAYLEY smiles.

ALEXIS
Dad, what happened to Beckett?

CASTLE
She’s hurt and she’s on the run.

ALEXIS
From whom?

CASTLE
I don’t know. It has something to do with the man she’s with.

HAYLEY
What man? (off CASTLE’S hard glare) Look, I’m here, aren’t I? You’ve got to give to get. Who’s this mystery man?

CASTLE
He’s East Indian, in his late 20s. He might be sick. He’s dizzy, had a headache, said he needed something to eat. I don’t know. What about you, Hayley? I know you’re holding back on something.

ALEXIS heads for the desk.

HAYLEY
I have a lead on the last two shooters.

CASTLE
How?

HAYLEY
Well, I haven’t just been chasing random identities. The hacker stole a hundred thousand social security numbers but then bundled them into smaller groupings.

CASTLE
And who is he selling the bundles to?

HAYLEY
Mafia, drug cartels, terrorists, take your pick. However, from the bundle of those five shooters I’ve just uncovered that a new identity is being used.

CASTLE
Can you track it?

HAYLEY
I already have. It was used to lease a storage locker. A few days ago.

CASTLE
And how does this help me find Beckett?

HAYLEY
It doesn’t. But, there are still two killers hunting her. If we can track them down I get one step closer to my hacker and you get your wife out of harm’s way. This way we both get what we want.

CASTLE considers the offer.

CASTLE
All right, let’s go.

They head for the door, but CASTLE stops when ALEXIS speaks.

ALEXIS
Dad, did you notice any candy wrappers or fruit juice, anything with sugar, at the dry cleaner’s?

CASTLE
Uh, an empty soda can. Why?

ALEXIS
I think Beckett’s mystery man might have been having a diabetic incident but based on his symptoms sugar is not enough. He would need insulin to regulate it –

CASTLE
I – I need to go. Let’s talk about this later though, okay?

CASTLE leaves a discouraged ALEXIS. HAYLEY is right behind him, but she stops and turns back to ALEXIS.

HAYLEY
Red, don’t wait for the old man. If you’ve something, follow up on it. Look, Beckett’s on the run. She can’t go to a doctor, can’t go to a hospital, so how does she get her hands on insulin?

ALEXIS
She would have to get creative.

HAYLEY
There you go.

HAYLEY leaves quickly. It’s enough to spur ALEXIS again.

EXT – NEW YORK CITY ALLEY

HAYLEY stops her car and pops the trunk. She pulls out a pair of bolt cutters.

CASTLE
Why did we park back here? (she doesn’t respond) Hayley, we can just walk straight through the front door. There’s no bolt cutters required.

HAYLEY
Oh, you’ve been playing at being a cop too long, Rick. As a PI you don’t have a badge, don’t have search warrants. You’ve got to be creative. Lie. Cheat.

CASTLE
And the occasional B and E, apparently.

HAYLEY
Yeah. If that’s what it takes. (he considers her) So what’s it going to be?

CASTLE nods.

HAYLEY
Yeah.

HAYLEY steps forward and cuts the lock to the back door.

EXT – NEW YORK CITY STREET

ALEXIS checks her phone. Someone called in a fake 911 call two hours prior. She matches the number of the ambulance to the number on the fake 911 call. The paramedic team is taking a lunch break, but this is her shot. She approaches the driver.

ALEXIS
Hi, my name’s Alex- Striker. Clara Striker. I’m an auditor with Emergency Services.

She flashes a card but he’s not paying much attention to her lack of credentials.

PARAMEDIC RAUCH
Um .. what can I do for you, Ms. Strike?

ALEXIS
I’m looking into a bogus 911 call made near a dry cleaner’s on 2nd and 23rd Street.

RAUCH
(nods) Yeah, uh … right. We reported that as a prank.

ALEXIS
Then I’m sure you performed a complete inventory afterward.

He’s silent.

ALEXIS
I take it you didn’t know you needed to. Don’t worry, we can do it now.

RAUCH
Look, Ms. Striker, I’m just a probationary EMT. My supervisor is going to be back any minute now. Can’t this wait?

She smiles and shrugs.

INT – AMBULANCE

RAUCH puts back a box of gauze pads.

RAUCH
Well, looks like everything’s in its place.

ALEXIS
Where do you keep the insulin?

RAUCH
Uh … (he opens a cabinet and pulls out a container) … we’re missing two vials.

ALEXIS nods and points to the camera in the corner.

ALEXIS
Do you have a monitor for the camera.

RAUCH
Yeah.

He points over his head.

ALEXIS
Play back the time of the call.

INT – AMBULANCE

ALEXIS and RAUCH watch the video footage from the time of the 911 call. They watch as BECKETT jimmies open the back door and climbs inside.

RAUCH
What the hell?

On video, BECKETT opens the cabinet door and pulls out vials of insulin. She shoves them in her pocket and climbs back out of the ambulance. She passes off the medications to a man trying to hail a cab. He nods and then she limps to the door of the stopped cab and sliding inside.

ALEXIS
Pause it.

RAUCH pauses the video. ALEXIS takes a photo of the medallion number.

RAUCH
Ms. Striker? Am I going to get in trouble for this?

ALEXIS
We’ll keep it our little secret.

She winks at him before she leaves.

INT – STORAGE LOCKER

CASTLE opens the door to a locker. It’s full of guns and ammunition.

CASTLE
Who the hell are these people?

HAYLEY
Just look for anything we can use to track these guys.

They wander inside. CASTLE picks up a handgun and examines it. He takes a photo for later.

CASTLE
These are the same .40 calibers the shooters at the theater had.

CASTLE’S phone chimes. HAYLEY turns around.

HAYLEY
Who did you just text? (off CASTLE’S look) The cops? We had a deal. You shook on it.

CASTLE
If you wanted a binding agreement we should have pinky swore.

HAYLEY
What are you, four?

CASTLE shrugs. They’re interrupted by a clang and HAYLEY grabs the gun from her waistband. She’s careful when she peeks out the door. Gunfire immediately starts and they duck back. But the shooter k doesn’t stick around. She takes off and HAYLEY is right behind her.

HAYLEY is careful. She moves slowly, waiting for her best shot. She manages to get the gun from the shooter and their gunfight turns into a fistfight. They’re pretty evenly matched, going blow for blow. But the shooter isn’t interested in finishing things. She manages to crash HAYLEY into the floor, grab her gun, and flee.

HAYLEY takes a second to recoup. Her arm has been cut and she’s bleeding, but she’s generally okay. There are heavy footsteps and CASTLE appears, two machine guns in hand. HAYLEY startles.

CASTLE
Hayley. What happened?

HAYLEY
I got my ass kicked.

CASTLE
Oh.

HAYLEY
Yeah.

CASTLE’S phone rings.

CASTLE
Hey. What’s up?

ALEXIS
Dad, I was able to track Beckett and that mystery man to a taxi.

CASTLE
You are the best! Okay, um … now all we have to do is call the cab company, find out where they went.

ALEXIS
Already did. They went to a prison upstate.

CASTLE
Really? Is she still there?

ALEXIS
No. But she visited an inmate. William Bracken.

CASTLE stops short.

HAYLEY
Bracken? Okay, why is your wife visiting a disgraced former senator?

CASTLE
They have history.

HAYLEY
What kind of history?

CASTLE
He had Beckett’s mother killed.

ALEXIS
It’s why she became a cop. She dedicated her life to hunting him.

HAYLEY
Okay, so what’s with the reunion? And why today of all days?

CASTLE thinks.

CASTLE
Because Bracken’s behind this.

HAYLEY
I know he was a powerful man, but that sort of influence dries up when you’re serving life in prison.

CASTLE
You don’t know the kind of people Bracken was aligned with. Mercenaries, dealers, the worst of the worst. He made a lot of people rich. (he looks around the storage locker full of guns) A lot of whom may still owe him favors.

HAYLEY
You’re saying that William Bracken ordered a hit on your wife?

CASTLE
Beckett ruined his so-called legacy. His life. He’s out for payback.

EST – WINTERKILL CORRECTIONAL FACILITY

HAYLEY and CASTLE drive up and park.

HAYLEY
You really think Bracken’s behind this?

CASTLE
The story tracks. Bracken is a megalomaniac who blames Beckett for ruining his life, even though it was justice for what he did to her mother.

HAYLEY nods.

CASTLE
You going to be here when I come out?

HAYLEY
No.

CASTLE
Because I texted Ryan and Esposito.

HAYLEY
I said no cops.

CASTLE
You’d rather there be a storage locker full of guns out there?

HAYLEY
It’s not my problem.

CASTLE
(disbelieving) Oh.

HAYLEY
Look, Rick, if you want to be a real PI and not just play dress up you’re going to have to make some changes in how you operate.

CASTLE
Changes like lying to my friends?

HAYLEY
Yeah, sometimes. And sometimes you’re even going to have to screw them over.

CASTLE
Yeah, no thanks.

He unbuckles his seatbelt and reaches for the door.

HAYLEY
Look, nice guys just don’t finish last in this business, Castle. They end up dead.

CASTLE
I’ll see you around.

He opens the door.

HAYLEY
You really love her, don’t you?

CASTLE
Like a house on fire.

HAYLEY
Must be nice.

CASTLE leaves.

HAYLEY
Speed dial five.

Her phone rings. CASTLE walks toward the entrance to the prison.

WOMAN
Go.

HAYLEY
It’s me.

WOMAN
What do you need?

HAYLEY
Tell the lab I’m coming in with something for them to test. (she examines the gash on her arm) Going to need it ID’ed right away.

She puts the car in reverse and backs out.

INT – WINTERKILL CORRECTIONAL FACILITY

CASTLE waits. On the other side of the glass there’s a buzz and WILLIAM BRACKEN enters the room. He stops the second he sees CASTLE.

WILLIAM BRACKEN
Oh, no, no, no, no.. Forget it. I’ve got nothing to say to you.

CASTLE stands.

CASTLE
Well, tough. I know Beckett was here and I know why. So you’re going to call off your dogs right now.

BRACKEN
Or what? You’re going to write something mean about me?

CASTLE
Or I’m going to start a scholarship in your name and offer it to the children of the first inmate who shanks you in the prison laundry.

BRACKEN
You’ll be wasting your money.

CASTLE
Oh, forgive me if I don’t take your word for it.

BRACKEN laughs and walks closer.

CASTLE
What’s so funny?

BRACKEN
You. (he picks up the phone and they sit) You come in here, all on fire about your wife. You don’t even know who she is. Sixteen years Kate Beckett’s been obsessed with solving her mother’s murder. You really think she can turn off that kind of obsession?

CASTLE
Are you saying this is her fault?

BRACKEN
I’m saying, she’s never going to be happy just being Mrs. Castle. She needs to tilt at windmills. It’s in her DNA. Like a moth to the flame. And we all know what happens to the moth at the end.

BRACKEN is done. He taps once on the glass with the phone before he hangs up and walks away.

BRACKEN
Get me out of here.

INT – STORAGE LOCKER

RYAN
Hey. Storage unit was rented with a stolen ID. Who do we know has been chasing those?

ESPOSITO
Hayley Shipton.

RYAN
(nods) She must have a list of all stolen IDs in that bundle, used it to track our shooters here.

ESPOSITO
And to convince Castle to run with her instead of us.

RYAN
What the hell’s he thinking?

ESPOSITO
He’s not. He’s reacting. Trying whatever he can to find Beckett.

RYAN
He’s gonna get them killed.

ESPOSITO nods slightly.

RYAN
Look at all this stuff. It’s all next-gen weaponry, piston driven, tricked out with thermal scopes and sound suppressors.

ESPOSITO
Probably some kind of professional hit squad or something.

RYAN
Yeah, but who’s paying them? And how do they connect to Beckett?

ESPOSITO
I don’t know.

RYAN’S phone chimes.

RYAN
ID sketch from the dry cleaner’s came back and the guy running with Beckett? (he turns his phone so ESPOSITO can see the sketch)

ESPOSITO
Let’s priority one this through the system and hope that an ID on this guy gets us some clarity.

They head back to the precinct.

EXT – WINTERKILL CORRECTIONAL FACILITY

CASTLE leaves the building. He’s a little shell-shocked. BRACKEN has rattled him. AJ grabs his arm and pulls him in her direction. She presses a gun to his side.

AJ
Keep walking. Head for the blue van.

CASTLE
Just the person I was looking for.

AJ
You know, most people react differently to a gun in their side.

CASTLE
Yeah well, this sort of thing happens to me a lot. (she’s silent) So I was just in there visiting with your boss. I don’t know how much he’s paying you, but it can’t be worth your life.

AJ
You really have no idea what’s going on, do you?

CASTLE
So enlighten me.

AJ
Not my job. (she pushes him toward the back of the van) Open it.

He does. While he’s following orders she injects a syringe into the back of his neck. He collapses into the van with a groan. Things start to get fuzzy, but he can tells she’s taken and smashed his phone before she shuts the door.

AJ
Sleep well.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

ALEXIS runs in, frantic.

ALEXIS
Dad’s missing! We have to find him!

ESPOSITO
Whoa, whoa, whoa. Slow down. What are you – what are you talking about?

ALEXIS
I’ve been tracking his cell phone on the sly. That way if he ever disappeared again I’d know. And an hour ago his phone suddenly went dead.

RYAN
Okay, maybe the battery just died.

ALEXIS
No, not with where he went.

RYAN
And where is that?

ALEXIS
Winterkill Correctional. I tracked Beckett there earlier.

ESPOSITO
Winterkill? That’s where Bracken is.

ESPOSITO marches across the bullpen. ALEXIS struggles to keep up with him.

ALEXIS
He’s connected to this somehow. That’s why Dad when to see him.

RYAN
Without telling us.

ESPOSITO
I bet Hayley went along, huh?

ALEXIS
Yeah, but when I called her she said she left him at the prison, hasn’t heard from her since.

RYAN
All right. I’ll reach out to the prison, get their external surveillance feed.

ESPOSITO
Right.

ESPOSITO walks away.

ALEXIS
Where’re you going?

ESPOSITO
To get Hayley.

INT – WAREHOUSE

CASTLE stumbles through a maze of railroad ties. His hands are bound, and AJ follows behind him with her gun drawn.

AJ
You can quit faking. The dose I gave you wore off by now.

CASTLE
Well, you can’t blame a guy for trying.

AJ
You might want to try something a little more original than the trick Derrick Storm pulled in Storm Fall.

CASTLE pauses.

CASTLE
You read my books?

AJ
A lot of down time in my line of work. (she nudges him forward) Your earlier stuff was better. You got soft once you met the skirt.

CASTLE
Everyone’s a critic.

AJ
Sit.

She gestures to a chair but she doesn’t take her gun off him. CASTLE sits. AJ binds his zip-tied hands to the chair with a pair of handcuffs.

CASTLE
Can’t help but think you’ve done this before.

CASTLE doesn’t have time to try to understand what’s going on. BROOKS comes from around the corner.

CASTLE
Hey. Richard Castle. I’d shake hands, but – (he shrugs)

BROOKS
You think this is funny?

CASTLE
No. No, no. I just felt like you’d be serious enough for the both of us.

BROOKS grabs a gun from his waistband.

BROOKS
Well, how’s this for serious? You either tell me where your wife is or I’m going to kill you.

CASTLE swallows.

INT – WAREHOUSE

BROOKS
This is a simple question. Where’s Kate Beckett?

CASTLE
I don’t know. And even if I did know, I wouldn’t tell you.

BROOKS
(chuckles) You know, it’s amazing. They all say that.

AJ
And yet, they all end up talking in the end.

CASTLE
You know, since we’re asking questions, maybe you guys could fill in a few blanks for me. For example, if Bracken isn’t your boss, then who is?

AJ
You know what? I don’t think he’s taking this seriously. (she grabs a switchblade and approaches CASTLE) Maybe a little pain will help him focus.

CASTLE
Pass. But you know what? I would kill for a nice cappuccino right now. Extra froth.

He’s trying to stall for time. They can’t see, but he’s trying to break the bindings around his wrists.

BROOKS
You expect us to believe that your wife is keeping you in the dark?

CASTLE doesn’t respond.

AJ
Look, this isn’t working. How do you want to do this? Start by cutting off his fingers until he talks or jump straight to the wedding vegetables?

CASTLE’S eyes widen.

BROOKS
You know, actually, I was thinking something a little more … uh … psychological.

CASTLE watches as he reaches for a box.

CASTLE
I’m going to be honest with you. That doesn’t look that scary.

BROOKS
Well, why don’t you look again?

BROOKS opens the box. It’s full of big, black spiders. CASTLE recoils. He tries to not react when a spider is placed on his face, but it’s no use.

AJ
Okay. I might puke.

CASTLE tries to stay still, but he’s freaking out. He whimpers and tried harder to break the zip ties.

BROOKS
Where is she, Castle?

CASTLE
I don’t know.

He’s struggling to keep calm.

BROOKS
Where is she?

CASTLE
I don’t know!

BROOKS adds another spider.

BROOKS
Where is she?

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT INTERROGATION ROOM

HAYLEY
I don’t know anything. The last time I saw Castle was outside the prison.

ESPOSITO
(to RYAN) You think an ex-cop would understand obstruction of justice.

RYAN
Yeah, especially since arresting her for it will torpedo her investigator’s license.

HAYLEY
You’re not scaring me, guys.

ESPOSITO
You think we’re playing? Castle’s one of us, which means you better come clean right now or every cop in this city is going to make it their mission to jam you up.

HAYLEY
I understand the passion, but I have a reputation to uphold. My clients think I roll over every time a cop says boo, I’m looking for a new line of work.

ALEXIS bursts into the room.

ALEXIS
Damnit, my dad’s in trouble! If you know anything about where he is you have to tell us.

HAYLEY stands.

HAYLEY
Alexis, it’s not that simple –

ALEXIS
Yes, it is! (she collects herself) Please.

HAYLEY
Okay. There is something that I kept to myself. But it’s not going to help you. It’s a dead end.

RYAN
Spill.

HAYLEY
There was a woman at the storage locker. We mixed it up a little. When she kicked me something transferred from her boot. (she holds up her arm) I had a lab test it. It’s creosote. It’s a form of coal tar primarily used to treat railway ties. There are tens of thousands of those ties used in the subway.

ESPOSITO
You get a copy of the lab report?

HAYLEY
Yeah.

She thumbs through her phone and then hands it over. RYAN and ESPOSITO scan it.

RYAN
The tie’s not from the subway.

HAYLEY
What?

ALEXIS
How do you know?

RYAN
No traces of any steel dust or any other kind of pollutants. My guess is that the railway tie’s new.

ESPOSITO
(nods) I’ll call MTA, see where they store those things.

RYAN leaves with ESPOSITO. ALEXIS looks at HAYLEY tearfully.

ALEXIS
Thank you.

HAYLEY forces a smile.

INT – WAREHOUSE

BROOKS
Where is she?

CASTLE doesn’t respond. He’s trying to not think about the spiders on his face. His hands are starting to bleed from trying to get out of the zip ties.

BROOKS
Where’s your wife, Castle?

CASTLE
I don’t know, I swear!

AJ
That is the wrong answer.

BROOKS pulls out a plastic bag and dumps the spiders into it before he steps forward and pulls the bag over CASTLE’S head. CASTLE struggles as BROOKS pulls the opening of the bag tight around his neck.

BROOKS
Tell me where your wife is.

CASTLE struggles more.

BROOKS
Tell me where she is.

CASTLE screams. Even AJ looks disgusted at the torture.

BROOKS
Where is she?

CASTLE
I don’t know!

BROOKS
Come on, Castle. No woman is worth dying for. Come on! (screams) Where is she?

CASTLE screams and then stops struggling. BROOKS holds the bag tight a few seconds longer before tearing it open. CASTLE is alive and he tries to shake the spiders off his face.

BROOKS
I believe that you’re telling the truth, I do. I believe that you’re telling me the truth, but unfortunately that means it’s time for you to die. Sorry about that.

BROOKS pulls a knife from his waistband. CASTLE takes the opportunity and breaks out of his zip ties, lunging forward and barreling into BROOKS. He throws the chair he was sitting in at AJ and makes a run for it.

INT – WAREHOUSE

There’s nowhere for CASTLE to run, but he tries. Gunfire explodes behind him as he ducks behind a stack of railroad ties. He can hear footsteps and he looks around, looking for a way out. He catches sight of the glass windows behind him and he takes his chance, jumping on top of the railroad ties to get to a window that opens. He’s almost got it open when he’s distracted.

AJ
Hey.

She kicks him and he falls, tumbling off the stack of railroad ties and onto the ground. He’s disoriented now, the hit harder than he expected. His vision is blurry and all he can do is hold up a hand when she pulls out her gun.

AJ
Lights out.

There are gunshots, but it’s not CASTLE that is hit. AJ takes a shot to the shoulder and falls backward. BROOKS fires back, but takes off when his attacker presses forward. CASTLE is still disoriented, but he’s coherent enough to realize that his savior is BECKETT. He watches her fire off two more rounds before she notices him.

She comes to him, making sure to toss away AJ’s gun before she kneels in front of him.

BECKETT
Castle? Are you okay?

She grabs his face, running her hands down his chest to make sure for herself.

CASTLE
Where have you been? Why haven’t you called?

BECKETT
I couldn’t.

CASTLE
Kate, what’s going on?

BECKETT
I - (she struggles. She’s running out of time. There are sirens in the background) I’ve gotta go.

He catches her wrist.

CASTLE
No, no. No. Kate – Kate, why are you shutting me out?

BECKETT
Castle, I love you.

She kisses him before she stands and leaves him. He reaches for her, but she’s too quick.

CASTLE
Kate? Kate!

She runs away. He struggles to get up, to follow her, but he can’t manage it.

CASTLE
Kate. (he struggles) Kate.

He’s trying to get to his feet when ESPOSITO, RYAN, and the ESU team round the corner.

ESPOSITO
Castle! Hey man, you okay?

CASTLE pushes him off.

CASTLE
Beckett, she was here. She was here.

ESPOSITO
What? Where?

CASTLE points. RYAN and ESPOSITO run off, looking for BECKETT when CASTLE can’t.

ALEXIS
Dad!

She runs to him and jumps into a hug.

CASTLE
Hey. Hey, hey, hey. I’m okay. I’m okay. It’s okay.

ALEXIS just holds on. She manages to pull away when RYAN comes back. His face betrays the bad news.

RYAN
ESU says the building’s secure. But there’s no sign of Beckett.

CASTLE looks around. That can’t be right. She was there.

EST – NEW YORK CITY, NIGHTFALL

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT OBSERVATION ROOM

AJ waits in the interrogation room, her arm in a sling. ALEXIS and CASTLE are on the other side of the glass.

CASTLE
Why doesn’t Beckett trust me?

ALEXIS
She does.

CASTLE
Then why is she keeping me in the dark? I don’t need protecting.

ALEXIS
Yes, you do. You’re a writer, Dad. And you and Beckett are magic together, but you don’t have her training or her skill set.

It’s not what CASTLE wants to hear.

ALEXIS
When you disappeared last year … (he’s stunned she mentioned it) … I thought you were dead. For two months. And then you went missing today and I was so scared.

CASTLE
Honey, I –

ALEXIS
Beckett has a reason for keeping quiet. If you love her, you have to trust her.

RYAN and ESPOSITO walk into the room.

CASTLE
Finally. What are we waiting for? Let’s go give her hell.

RYAN
Castle, wait.

ESPOSITO
We got a positive ID on the guy running with Beckett.

CASTLE
Great. Who is he?

RYAN hands over a folder.

RYAN
His name is Vikram Singh. He’s a low-level analyst for the Attorney General’s Investigative office.

ALEXIS
In DC? That’s where Beckett worked.

CASTLE
Yeah, but that was two years ago and she never mentioned anyone named Vikram.

ESPOSITO
Yeah, as far as we can tell their paths never crossed. He’s only been on the job a few months.

CASTLE
Then how would Beckett know him? We need to call Rachel McCord. She was Beckett’s partner.

RYAN
McCord’s dead, Castle. Killed yesterday in an automobile accident, along with three other members of her team.

CASTLE realizes.

CASTLE
That … can’t be a coincidence.

ESPOSITO
It’s not. The last member of her team was stabbed to death at a club that same night. Witnesses saw him flirting with a hot brunette.

He nods toward AJ.

CASTLE
This doesn’t make any sense. What does any of this have to do with Bracken?

RYAN
Well, let’s go ask her.

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT INTERROGATION ROOM

CASTLE
For someone who says they’ve got a lot of downtime, you sure have been a busy girl: staging car accidents, stabbings in DC, kidnapping me at gunpoint in New York. Tell me, do assassins get frequent flyer miles?

RYAN
Ah, but you didn’t fly commercial, did you? We ran your photo against every flight from DC, so you either road-tripped it or you took a private jet. And given your arsenal, you people clearly have the resources.

AJ
I’m not really sure what you’re expecting, here. A tearful confession? Not going to happen.

RYAN
Well, we are expecting that you’re smart enough to know that it’s CYA time.

AJ
Look, unless you’ve got a bag of spiders we’re done here.

CASTLE
You know, you told me I had no idea what was going on and you were right. But now I’ve got the edge of it and I’m going to keep on peeling it back until I know everything, with or without your help.

RYAN
I recommend the with. It comes with less prison time.

AJ
(scoffs) Prison’s a picnic compared to what happens to me if I talk. (to CASTLE) You need to make peace with the fact that your wife isn’t long for this world.

CASTLE
Don’t be so sure. Your team started out with five. Three of you are dead and you’re sitting right here. That leaves one: your boss. And Beckett against one guy? I like those odds.

AJ
What makes you think there’s only one team in play?

EXT – NEW YORK CITY STREET

BROOKS leans against his car. He’s doesn’t flinch when two other black SUVs drive up and people start to spill out of them, all with large automatic guns.

BROOKS
All right.

EST – NEW YORK CITY, NIGHTTIME

INT – TWELFTH PRECINCT BULLPEN

ESPOSITO
Hey. I just got off the phone with an Assistant AG in DC, an Allison Hyde. She’s leading the investigation into the deaths of her people. She’s up on the first plane in the morning to take our hitter into federal custody.

CASTLE
Does she have any idea this Vikram guy’s connection to Beckett?

ESPOSITO
No, but she’s pulling his records.

CASTLE
So we’re nowhere.

ESPOSITO doesn’t say it, but the answer is yes. ALEXIS steps forward and CASTLE pulls her into a hug. There’s a noise behind them and they watch AJ being led out of the interrogation room by OFFICER LT and OFFICER JENKINS. She doesn’t waste any time, turning around as soon as she clears the door and punches JENKINS in the face. She kicks LT when he tries to subdue her and grabs JENKINS’ gun, shooting LT.

RYAN
Gun!

CASTLE pushes ALEXIS to the floor. Everyone in the precinct ducks.

RYAN
Everybody get down!

AJ grabs LT’s gun and starts to shoot at anyone and anything in the room. RYAN and ESPOSITO duck for cover behind a desk. AJ doesn’t let up. RYAN and ESPOSITO get a few of their own shots off, but she’s relentless.

ESPOSITO
I’m going to do something.

RYAN
Don’t be stupid.

ESPOSITO
Where’s the fun in that?

ESPOSITO takes his chance and stands, firing at AJ. RYAN covers him while he runs, sliding across the floor to get a better angle of attack. He fires five, six, more shots, and AJ goes down.

ESPOSITO
Shooter’s down!

CASTLE
(to ALEXIS) Are you okay?

ALEXIS nods.

UNIFORM
I need a medic over here!

CASTLE
Come on.

He pulls ALEXIS up.

ESPOSITO
LT.

RYAN
Stay down.

Both JENKINS and LT are pushed to stay down but neither man is dead.

OFFICER
I’ve got two officers down. Hurry up!

CASTLE and ALEXIS pass by the hallway. The guns are being kicked away from AJ’s body.

CASTLE
Oh, sweetie, don’t look.

ALEXIS doesn’t listen.

ALEXIS
Why’d she do it? There’s no way she thought she could escape.

CASTLE
It wasn’t about escape. She knew her fate was sealed as soon as she got caught. This way she went out on her own terms.

ALEXIS
And made sure we stayed in the dark.

ALEXIS walks away.

CASTLE
(low) Damn it, Kate, where are you?

EST – UNKNOWN, NIGHTTIME

EXT – APARTMENT

BECKETT is safe, staring out the window of the dingiest apartment ever. But she’s alive and VIKRAM is alive and that’s all she’s got right now.

What she doesn’t seem to be aware of is the black SUVs full of heavily-armed people that have pulled up. They exit their SUV and one shoulders in the door to the apartment building.

[TO BE CONTINUED]

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