kaitlia777 (kaitlia777) wrote,

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Title: Everyone is slightly abnormal 2/2

Title: Everyone is slightly abnormal 2/2
Author: kaitlia777
Author's e-mail/website: kaitlia777@yahoo.com
Fandom: Castle/Sanctuary
Summary: Something about this case just screamed ABNORMAL.
Type / Pairings: Don’t want to spoil a surprise!
Main characters: Pretty much everyone’s here!
Rating: R for language
Warnings: A bit of grossness in describing the crime scene
Spoilers: Anything that’s aired in the US is fair game
Beta: N/A
Disclaimer: Don’t own any of the recognizable character, just taking them out to play!
Author's Notes: This fic was prompted by lanna_kitty , who wanted a Sanctuary/Castle crossover.

Part 1

Rick was pretty sure he could milk at least a month of good will out of this little endeavor. Or, if not good will, he could at least be free of the looks that occasionally said ‘you’re an oddball’.

‘Cause really, nothing and no one could seem odd after working with the crew from the Sanctuary, who, while awesome, were all more than a little nuts.

Beckett had to be gnawing on the inside of her cheek as Will and Kate F. (with the two Kate’s Castle had decided to go the grade school route and tag a last initial to their names for clarification) blithely went about their business, neither appearing overly concerned for the normally applicable laws.

As Kate F. kicked in a door to the old warehouse (for which they did not have a warrant) her contact had directed them to, Will at least gave Beckett a contrite look, saying, “ I know this isn’t how you usually do things, but police procedure just doesn’t work when dealing with Abnormals…or most people who know Abnormals.”

“Will,” Kate F. said loudly from a few feet into the building. “C’mon, man, sewer time.”

With that she swung down into the sewer access and Will followed with a sigh of, “I love my job.” Soon, Rick was alone in the empty warehouse with Beckett, who was checking something on her phone.

“Castle,” Beckett began, scrolling through whatever information appeared before her, “I know you’ve known Dr. Magnus for years but…God, inquiries I make about her just keep coming up as Classified. Zimmerman’s an ex-Fed profiler who flamed out for excessive weirdness. Freelander has a record, theft, trafficking in stolen artifacts, assault…nice girl. Foss is clean, apparently even wrote some security codes for the government. Tesla…are they seriously trying to tell us he’d that Nikola Tesla?”

“Yes,” he said with a grin, then sobered and turned to face his friend, reaching out to place a hand over the phone she was still fixated on. Her eyes rose to meet his and he said, “Kate, I know this is a lot to take in at once, but can’t you embrace the…fantastic? I mean, yeah, we live in a world that’s different from their’s, but occasionally there’s an overlap and we get a chance to see something beyond normal. Can’t we just step through the veil for a moment and embrace the absurd?”

For a moment, Beckett pursed her lips, then she drew a deep breath and released it slowly with a nod. “All right,” she replied, then couldn’t help but add, “If they manage to catch this…Liath?.. Are they going to deal with it, ‘cause I don’t think Riker’s is prepared for Abnormals.”

He nodded, smiling at her slight attempt at humor. “I think so. Hey! Later, ask Helen or Mom about the real Sherlock Holmes. I met him a couple of times. Nice guy.”

Blinking, Kate just shook her head and, from down in the sewer, Will’s voice drifted up. “Hey, Rick, can you help us get this out of here?”

When they peered down into the sewer hole, they saw Will and Kate F. holding a large box between them. With some struggle, they lifted it over their heads, high enough for Rick to grasp a handhold on the top. It was heavy, but he wrestled it up onto the warehouse floor as the two Sanctuary folks scrambled up the ladder.

“What’s in here?” Rick asked, reaching for the lid, then drawing his hands away quickly. “It’s not a bomb, is it? I don’t like it when things are bombs.”

“It’s not a bomb,” Kate F. snorted, then glanced at Will in a slightly surprised and off footed way.

The profiler was quick to add his reassurances. “It’s definitely not a bomb. Probably.”

Not entirely reassured, Rick cast a glance at Beckett, who looked like she was contemplating cashing in a few more of her seldom used vacation days.

Helen’s furry, little minion (as opposed to the large, flurry minion left behind in Old City) could move quite fast when he put his mind to it. Nikola wasn’t overly fond of breaking a sweat through physical activity (that sort of habit could lead to unpleasant circumstances should one perhaps forget to bathe for a week or two), so he chose to follow at a slightly slower pace.

He entered a fairly impressive looking lab to find a small cluster of terrified scientists (he used the term loosely. Sometimes it seemed like everyone with a Bunsen Burner was calling himself a scientist nowadays) huddled in a corner, while a another (larger, quite possibly stupidly belligerent) lay in a heap by a bank of computers. A final lab coat clad man was backed into a wall, clearly trying not to evacuate his bowels as Henry (in that odd, transitional state between man and beast) roared at him.

It was an appropriate use of the word and frankly Nikola hadn’t thought the wolf-pup had it in him.

“What did you do to her?” Henry demanded, slamming a half transformed hand/paw into the wall beside the Cabal butcher’s head. It had been a hard hit, as the sound of something cracking echoed through the room.

Nikola wondered who Henry was talking about as the lab rat whimpered, “N-n-nothing! We were just told to keep her sedated until someone contacted us with a new control drug regimen that she couldn’t fight…but they never got back to us…”

A prickle of suspicion crept up Nikola’s neck and he stepped further into the room as Henry asked, “She broke free? Can you wake her up safely?”

“Yes,” the man said in a wavering voice, “But they said she was violent, trying to escape….”

The wall was clearly not plaster, as it shrieked when Henry dragged his claws along the surface and snarled, “Stop drugging her. If you do anything fishy or if anything happens to her, the HAP-ster is gonna go all feral on you. Am I clear?”

By this point it was obvious that the man had lost control of his bladder and had no will to fight as he hurried to the computer, entering commands with trembling hands.

“Dear God,” Nikola breathed, drawing up to Henry’s side and looking through a tinted glass wall that, from another angle, had appeared opaque. The next room was dimly lit and contained only a contoured, horizontal treatment bed. On it, bound by more than four point restraints, lay a young woman, naked, IV’s and tubes running out of her body, round sensor pads dotting her pale skin.

Though Nikola hadn’t really known the girl, he’d recognize Ashley Magnus anywhere. Helen, Henry and the Sasquatch all kept pictures of her in their work and private rooms. From them, he’d gotten the impression of youthful vitality, fierceness of spirit and impish humor.

The girl before them simply looked…diminished.

Taking a breath as his features shifted back to their normal, human form, Henry ordered, “Open the glass.”

Once again trying to balk, the scientist said, “I think we….”

Henry raised his weapon and glowered. “Henry Foss,” he identified himself, then nodded to Nikola. “He’s Nikola Tesla. I’m thinking we really don’t need you to figure out this equipment.”

Robbed of the impression that his services were actually needed, the lab rat complied. The glass partition lifted and Henry’s demeanor changed. He pressed the gun into Nikola’s hand and hurried forward as the two detectives (and a pair of uniformed officers, probably summoned by locals due to the gun shots) entered.

New faces were not needed at the moment.

“Perhaps they could…guard the perimeter,” Nikola suggested of the two uniforms. They did not need to know what was going on down here. “And keep watch on the Rent-A-Cops.”

Esposito, the swarthier of the two detectives, sent his underlings off to do as Nikola suggested, then peered around, asking, “What is this place?”

In the newly opened room, Henry had stripped off his vest and long sleeve shirt, draping the later over Ashley’s body when a blanket hadn’t been on hand. He kept up a steady stream of murmured, reassuring nonsense and stroked the girl’s hair as he hovered by her bed. All his attention was focused on the unconscious girl and Nikola wondered what their relationship had been…probably complicated, considering he was a HAP and she was the offspring of Helen and Druitt.

No, he wasn’t going to be answering the detective’s question.

Taking the duty upon himself, Nikola said, “This is a Cabal facility. Though they claim to not do much of the actual slicing, dicing and splicing here, they are holding a young woman against her will in a medically induced coma. Oh, and one of them, probably the waste of flesh on the floor - he reeks of Alpha male posturing, even when knocked unconscious- sent the Liath to kill Bullwinkle to keep him from reporting their existence to the Sanctuary.”

Ryan, the Irishman (far less tiresome than Adam), had been wrestling cuffs onto the unconscious man, who probably had 100lbs on him, looked up to ask, “Think he’s human? How are we going to handle the arrests if someone is an Abnormal.”

“I’m sure Helen will have the local Sanctuary step in to handle the Abnormals,” Nikola reassured him, then decided he had yet another duty to fulfill.

Honestly, hanging around with Helen and her little squad of do-gooders was turning him into an honest and upstanding citizen.

All of the scientists, save the one terrorized into helping revive Ashley, were soon cuffed and Nikola breathed a sigh of relief. Then, he pulled his phone from his pocket and hit speed dial (Wonderful invention. He had hated having to remember things like peoples phone numbers).

“Helen,” he said without preamble. “You’re going to want to get over here….”

Less than a minute later, Helen assured him that she would be there promptly and hung up. Due to the stress of the moment, her curtness was understandable. He was normally what some people might call discourteous, but Helen was normally a paragon of impeccable manners.

A pained gasp drew his attention back to where Henry stood by Ashley and he saw that she had begun to twitch slightly. The HAP had removed the shackles from the girl and her limbs were moving, shaky and weak from prolonged inactivity.

“Ash, Ashley, look at me, Ash,” Henry was saying, gently cradling her face in his hands. “It’s Henry. You’re safe. We found you.”

She shuddered and coughed, jerking a few more times and Esposito said, “I’m calling a bus….”

“No!” Nikola said sharply, holding up a hand to forestall the action. “Helen will be here soon. She has access to the best medical facilities imaginable.” Turning to the Cabal scientist, he asked, “What‘s wrong with her?”

Cowering, clearly afraid of what Nikola was known to have been, the man said, “I stopped the constant sedative drip and pushed some uppers. She’s waking up.”

“She’s metabolized the drugs so quickly,” Nikola said in an undertone, more of a musing than a statement to the room.

Eager to be seen as something other than a superfluous enemy, the lab rat nodded obsequiously. “Her metabolic rate is off the charts, as are immunologic responses and her ability to heal from injury. We’ve had to up her dosage of sedatives steadily to keep her under.”

“Hey, jagoff, that isn’t something to sound proud of,” Ryan snapped, giving the Cabal minion a look of such distaste that Nikola found a new appreciation for the detectives.

It also helped that Esposito looked like he’d enjoy nothing more than the opportunity to punch the lab rat in the head.

Contemplation of the detectives (interesting though they were, what with the simmering air of sexual tension and true affection between them) was cut short as Ashley lurched up off of the bed and Henry caught her before she fell to the ground.

“Okay, okay,” he murmured. “Let’s get you off of this thing. Can someone grab a blanket of something?”

There weren’t any comfortable chairs, so Henry found himself sitting cross-legged on the floor with Ashley cradled in his lap. Having menaced a blanket out of the Cabal staff, Esposito wrapped it around the both of them, as the room was cool and Henry was shirtless.

Once off of the bed, Ashley seemed to calm, clinging to Henry, who clutched her in return. The pair of them rocked back and forth gently, heads bent together, and occasional sniffle escaping between broken, incomprehensible questions and whispered assurances.

Nikola grimaced. He wasn’t prone to flights of emotional fancy, but seeing them curled up on the floor struck a cord in him. He assured himself that this was because the girl was Helen’s daughter and, as much as he teased Henry, the boy was not an idiot, not because he was going all soft and caring.

“Who is she?” Ryan asked quietly as he and his partner approached Nikola. The two of them seemed to gravitate into each others personal space without even being aware of the habit.

Not taking his eyes from the two people huddled in an impossibly tiny ball on the floor, Nikola let out a breath he hadn’t been aware he was holding. “Ashley Magnus. Helen’s daughter. Thought to be dead for…two years now.”

“Damn,” the detectives chorused, torn between glaring at the Cabal scientists and watching the reunion before them.

Gathering his not inconsiderable wits about himself, Nikola again pulled out his phone. Helen was sure to be in no condition to inform her protégé of the situation and she’d probably want the boy on scene eventually.

When Zimmerman answered his phone on the second ring, Nikola wasted no time. “Bet we found something more interesting than you!”

More than once during their drive toward…well, Martha wasn’t entirely sure where they were headed, just that she was glad to arrive in one piece, something she had vehemently prayed for during the trip. It took her several moments to will her fingers to unclench from around the safety handle after the most harrowing car trip she’d ever experienced.

Considering the frequency with which she made use of New York City cabs, many of whom seemed to possess operators with the ability to drive up onto walls in order to dodge traffic, this was saying a lot.

The moment she threw the car into park, Helen was out of the vehicle, elbowing her way through the crowd of uniformed officers gathered around a decrepit building. There was a sense of chaos to the scene, so Martha rallied and followed her old friend, not wanting to be left out.

Most everyone took one look at the expression on Helen’s face and made way for her, but one officer attempted to intercept them.

“I’m sorry,” the younger woman said, keeping her own face stern. “I’m going to have to ask you to step back behind the tape.”

A bloodbath was averted by dear Detective Ryan. He appeared from within a boarded up pet store and called out, “It’s okay, Coyle, let them through.”

“Yes sir,” the officer relented, lifting the yellow crime scene tape and allowing them to proceed.

Helen didn’t waste any time, asking, “Where is she?”

“In here,” Ryan said, leading the way into the shockingly well kept interior of the building. It didn’t look like any pet store Martha had ever seen.

Honestly, the whole place screamed expensive Scandinavian design, clean lines, but empty, with minimal to no decorations. Spartan to the point of sterility.

Of course, sterility might have been what they were going for, Martha mused as they entered the large room. It took her a moment to identify the space as a lab. The cluster of nervous white coated men and women and expensive microscopes were the only things she could identify, as the vast array of machinery and computers were a mystery to her.

“Helen.” Nikola Tesla called out to her softly from a small side room and Martha saw him standing a polite distance from where Henry sat on the floor, huddled in a blanket with a blonde in his lap.

Drawing a deep breath, Helen stepped forward as Henry’s head popped up. His cheeks were damp, but he smiled at Helen and said, “Ash, Ash, you’re mom’s here.”

The blonde head lifted from Henry’s shoulder and turned toward Helen. “Mom,” the girl rasped, voice hoarse from disuse, but the note of hope was clear in her tone.

“Ashley,” Helen murmured, reaching out with a reverent hand to stroke the girl’s hair. “How….?”

“It’s her, Doc,” Henry babbled happily, grin splitting his face. “I don’t know how, but it’s her.”

With that, Helen dropped to her knees and wrapped her arms around her daughter, sounds of happy tears echoing through the room. Henry seemed to try to squirm out from under the blanket, but both of the women clutched him tight.

For a moment, Martha was reminded of the one time she’d visited Helen at the Old City Sanctuary. It had been about five months after Ashley’s birth and she had wanted to visit her friend and coo over her new baby. Richard had been in that moody, teenager phase, which was far less pleasant than a happy baby.

A smiling, content but tired Helen had shown her to the nursery, a brightly lit room that smelled faintly of sage. Ashley, all pink cheeks and blonde hair, had been in her playpen and Henry, the little fellow Helen had recently adopted, had perched beside the pen, shaking a toy for the girl’s amusement.

Upon their entry, the boy had smiled at Helen, but seemed startled by Martha’s presence. He’d eyed her as though assessing the danger she might present, only relaxing when he was gathered to Helen’s side as she plucked Ashley from the pen.

The boy was clearly part of the family.

After some cooing over the baby, the two women had sat to catch up, settling the children on a blanket by Helen’s feet. Again, the boy seemed content to entertain the baby with small stuffed toys or gently tickling her. The only sounds they made were Ashley’s giggles, as Helen informed her Henry wasn’t much of a talker.

It had been an adorable scene, almost enough to make her wish she’d given Richard a little brother or sister.


Richard alone was more than a handful…and louder than both of Helen’s children combined.

Think of the devil… Richard and Detective Beckett entered with Dr. Zimmerman and Ms. Freelander on their heels. Looked like the gang was all here.

Now maybe someone would explain what the hell was going on.

Everyone’s scent is as unique as a fingerprint. Environment effected it on a daily basis, of course, as did skin care products, soaps, but some things became undeniable, seeped deep, a part of a persons essence, the underlying constant that was as much a part of someone as eye color or height.

Upon first seeing Ashley strapped to that bed, he’d wondered if the Cabal had managed to clone her. But a clone wouldn’t smell right. A clone wouldn’t have been raised wandering the halls of the Sanctuary, playing in the labs and libraries, absorbing an echo of the place into her pores.

It was as essential a part of her scent as it was of his, of Magnus’s or Biggie’s, of anyone who spent decades within those great walls.

So yeah, he was sure this was Ashley, their Ashley.

Eventually, he knew he had to do some work and extracted himself from the cocoon of blankets and Magnus women. The room was cold and Ashley was wearing his shirt, so he crossed his arms over his bare chest and strode past Tesla, who raised a brow and looked pointedly at Henry’s piercings.

Oh, the annoying ex-vamp was so going to taunt him about his body mod later.

At the moment, he couldn’t care less about that.

In the outer part of the lab, Will, Kate, the Castles and the detectives were standing around, discussing their next move.

“I’m not sure we can hold them on Bullwinkle,” Beckett, the tall, gorgeous detective was saying. “We’ve got nothing tying them directly to his murder. Unlawful detainment/kidnapping, that’ll stick if you people file a report….”

“Conspiracy to commit murder,” Will said, then raised his voice. “They’re normal humans, so if they plead to that, we’ll let you prosecute them. We’re handling whoever set up the contract with the Liath though.”

All of the Cabal butchers were quick to admit to their role in Bullwinkle’s death rather than face punishment at Helen’s hands.

A large part of Henry thought they were getting off way too easy.

Poking Will in the back, Henry said, “Dude, hoodie.”

This prompted the profiler to shuck his outer layer and hand it over. Zipping it up, Henry rolled his shoulders. It was snug but it was better than nothing. He made a mental note to ask the Big Guy to start giving Will larger portions of protein at meal times.

Seriously, dude could stand to gain a pound or fifteen.

The scientist he’d terrorized into reviving Ashley was still hovering by the computers, but one of the detectives had been kind enough to cuff the bastard’s hands. When Henry looked at him, the man flinched.

“Am I going to find any booby traps in the system if I log on from this terminal,” Henry asked, making sure to keep the growl in his voice, as fear seemed effective at keeping the man in line so far.

Blanching, the Cabal scientist shook his head and scurried a few steps back, giving Henry plenty of room by the computer.

Though he’d much rather be sitting with Helen and Ashley, Henry knew he had to access the Cabal files and find out exactly what had been done to Ash…as well as looking for info on who had ordered Bullwinkle put down and anything that could ID the Liath assassin.

“Your boss, big, belligerent and drooling on the floor, what’s his name?”

The Alpha of the group was a good place to start.

“Lars Mayweather,” the lab jockey admitted before attempting to blend into the wall so as not to be noticed.

A good plan, except for the fact that Helen never forgot and wasn’t about to start with a man who had held her daughter against her will for years.

Even thinking about that made him want to snarl. He hadn’t felt this close to losing control since he’d learned to harness his wild side. He figured that was probably because his rational side wanted revenge just as much as his other nature wanted to be let loose to exact said revenge.

Once in the system, hacking Mayweather’s files was a cake walk and Henry ran a keyword search as he downloaded the entire data cache onto a few of the large capacity zip drives he carried in his pockets.

“We found a hard drive at the address we checked out,” Kate told him, resting her elbows on the counter beside where he was working. “’S out in the car.”

He nodded. “I’ll sweep it for Trojan Horses before we plug it into the mainframe.” He’d learned not to trust the enemy to be careless.

Especially the Cabal.

Bio wasn’t Henry’s strong suit, but he had a feeling Magnus would find lots of useful…stuff in the files he was scanning. According to Mayweather’s notes, his minion hadn’t lied. Ashley was in good health, but had been kept in a chemical coma for a long, long time.

Even Henry knew that wasn’t healthy.

Another of his algorithms was searching for references to the Sanctuary and most seemed to be disgruntled rambles about the trouble they’d made for the Cabal.

Clearly, Mayweather was a poor loser.

Henry’s mood changed rapidly when he happened upon a particular entry.

“Ql’yH!” he hissed as a loud crack echoed through the room. Whatever it was, he didn’t give a damn, refusing to tear his eyes from the screen.

“Um…Hank, you just…HAP-ped the keyboard,” Kate said, sounding slightly un-nerved. “What’s up?”

Snorting several breaths through his nose, Henry gathered his reserve of cool and willed his hands to release the remains of the keyboard and shift back to human form. Through gritted teeth, he snarled, “That bastard knew!”

“Who knew what?” Kate asked, shifting to peer over his shoulder. Following the line of his jabbing finger, she too took a deep breath and agreed, “Fuck.”

“What are we swearing about?” Will planted himself at Henry’s other shoulder and, moments later, groaned, “Oh, fuck.”

“Is this the kind of cursing we need to know about?” Beckett sounded like she really didn’t want to know. That was understandable, as their particular brand of crazy could be taxing to those unused to it.

“No,” Will said shortly, then asked, “Who’s the head here now?”

Repressing his anger, Henry replied, “Noreen McKenna. Used to be one of Declan’s people.”

“I’ll call her,” Will said and quickly stepped out to do just that.

No one wanted to disturb Helen with the news that Terrence Wexford, former head of the New York Sanctuary, had known the Cabal was holding Ashley at a facility in his city.

Last Henry had heard, Wexford was still lurking around the city’s Sanctuary, trying to re-establish himself, so Noreen would be able to deposit him in a holding room until it was time to interrogate him. Knowing Helen was likely to react badly to this news, Henry…no, actually, he couldn’t find it in his heart to feel sorry for Wexford. He’d never liked the guy and this pushed his feelings over into the area of pure loathing.

The spitting creep deserved whatever he got.

In all her years with the NYPD, Kate Beckett had never seen so many suspects trip over each other to implicate themselves in crimes she’d otherwise have trouble connecting them with.

Apparently, whatever the Sanctuary people might do with them was far scarier than the threat of jail time. Significant jail time, since they all admitted to knowing that they were holding the Magnus girl against her will and conspiring to kill Bullwinkle.

Eventually, the guards and all of the scientists, save the one wearing urine soaked pants and the ringleader, were carted off to the station by an array of curious uniforms. Mr. Tinkles, as Castle was calling the scientist who’d messed himself, had a small fit when he thought he was being left for the Sanctuary to deal with, but had calmed when Will, the most reasonable of that lot (even if he did look only a dash of body glitter away from being an extra in a Twilight movie), assured him he’d be turned over to the police once Henry gave the word.

The ringleader, Mayweather, was roused by Kate Freelander, after Ryan and Esposito hauled the man into another room and secured him to a chair. When calling his name and shaking his shoulder failed to rouse Mayweather, the young woman had blithely dumped a pitcher of ice water down the front of the man’s pants.

He came to instantly, sputtering and swearing. When his eyes found the badges hanging around the necks of Kate and her colleagues, he seemed relieved, then frowned. “You can’t pour ice water in my lap! That has to be a human rights violation!”

“Yeah,” Kate agreed, crossing her arms and leaning back against the wall to nod at Freelander, “But the thing is…I don’t have jurisdiction over you. They do.”

Zimmerman and Tesla were lingering behind Freelander, who stepped forward to fulfill her role as team heavy.

“She’s right about that Lars,” Freelander said with a wide smile. “The NYPD can’t save you now.”

They did seem to be sticking with the ‘terrify the criminal’ method of interrogation. While it wasn’t entirely legal, it had worked like a charm on the rest of the Cabal lab staff.

But Mayweather just scowled. “And I should be scared of you, girlie? Or the two swizzle sticks behind you? Not likely.”

That comment made the two men scowl and Tesla flicked a hand. The chair Mayweather sat on jerked forward, skidding across the floor with a loud whine. Freelander planted her booted foot in the center of the now unnerved man’s chest, halting his progress.

“Yeah, actually,” Freelander smirked. “You really should be shitting yourself right about now.”

“If he’s not going to play nice, I suggest we call John,” Tesla said in a bored, off hand tone that was obviously contrived. “Watching this man drown in his own blood could be cathartic.”

Okay, that was unsettling because he seemed to mean that and Mayweather was looking more and more nervous.

“We’re from the Sanctuary,” Zimmerman said in a clipped tone as he and Tesla stepped up to flank Freelander. “The Old City Sanctuary. And our boss is not happy with you.”

That was something Mayweather did not want to hear and his bravado collapsed in an instant. “Oh no…” he more or less whimpered, then his eyes grew wide. “Was one of you the thing that threw me into a wall earlier?

Clearly, Freelander wasn’t about to tell Mayweather the man he feared was having a family moment in the next room, so the woman simply said, “Nah, he’s our tech support. I can call him in….”


“Erasmo Bullwinkle. We know you contracted a Liath to kill him. Details,” Zimmerman said and Mayweather promptly spilled his guts.

Bullwinkle had been researching his latest novel and had stumbled onto the knowledge that the Cabal had an existing stronghold in the city. Mayweather had contacted Wexford, whom he’d had previous dealings with, but who couldn’t help due to his demotion. He did however provide contact information for B’GgrsIlder, a Liath assassin.

Well, it was good to know the truth, even if most of it would get them laughed out of any court room in the country.

“Ashley Magnus,” Tesla said, leaning forward as Mayweather paled. “I think we need to talk about her.”

That was their thing, so Kate turned and strode out of the room, Castle, Ryan and Esposito following. Martha was seated on a lab stool, seemingly at a bit of a loss and the terrorized scientist was still cuffed to a table on the other side of the room.

“Tell me this isn’t what you generally do on one of your cases,” Martha said to Castle, who crossed over to her.

“No, Mother,” he assured her, then cocked his head to the side and smiled. “Is this what your ‘adventures’ with Helen and James were like?”

“No,” she said with a faint, fond smile, then looked up as Magnus emerged from the side room. Henry followed closely, a blanket wrapped Ashley in his arms.

“Thank you all for your help,” Magnus said, giving each of them a nod of acknowledgement. “It’s been a rather productive night. Henry and I are going to take Ashley to receive proper care, but Will and Kate can provide you with paperwork to aid you in your prosecution of the criminals in your custody. All of the staff, save Mr. Mayweather, are yours to charge.”

Kate wanted to ask the woman about a thousand questions, but decided to hold off, considering the state of her daughter. Castle had her contact info, so no rush.

“It was…interesting,” Kate said as Ryan and Esposito exchanged goodbyes with Henry.

“Likewise,” Magnus assured her. “It’s always a pleasure to make new allies in the law enforcement community.”

That was one way to put what they had done.

“Let me know how things turn out,” Martha said to her old friend, who nodded.

“Of course. Henry, shall we?”

With that, they were gone and Kate found herself pondering how…different the world now seemed. Two days ago, she’d never heard of Abnormal, the Sanctuary, the Cabal….

As insane as it all was, she wanted to know more.

Sitting back in the comfortable chair she’d hauled down from the library, Helen allowed herself to relax. A Cabal cell had been eliminated, a killer identified, Wexford awaited interrogation and Ashley was resting comfortably.

Ashley. Alive and whole, though still shaking off the effects of years of sedation. Helen had nearly accepted her loss and finding her had been a most wonderful surprise.

On her bed, Ashley was breathing evenly, curled up on her side. All of the monitors said her vitals were stable, steadily improving as she slept.

Henry, no more willing to leave than Helen, was sprawled on another treatment bed. He had been working on a tablet before he’d nodded off. As she had many times in the past, Helen plucked the device from his hand and draped a blanket over him.

Only an hour earlier, Will, Kate and Nikola had returned from assisting the detectives and delivering Mayweather to the local Sanctuary. Will briefed her on the state of the Cabal employees in the custody of the NYPD and of Noreen’s internal review, spurred on by the revelation of Wexford’s betrayal.

Once finished, he’d headed off to bed, as had Kate. Helen wondered when the two of them would find their way to each other. Abigail, while nice, was…not at all right for Will.

Though Helen could admit that her past relationships hadn’t always been what one would call healthy, she did think her advanced age gave her some perspective. She’d seen enough of people dancing around each other to know when feelings were present and real.

Take Martha’s son, Richard, and the lovely Detective Beckett. Clearly there was something there but they refrained from admitting their love for each other. She got the same impression of denied (or at least repressed) feelings from Detectives Esposito and Ryan.

Young people today seemed to find romantic entanglements as confusing as they had in her youth…and, to be honest, present.

John would be pleased to discover that Ashley lived. It would be nice if Helen knew how to contact him, but he was currently off on one of his retreats.

With a sigh, Helen scanned the Cabal medical files Henry had downloaded onto a tablet for her. Sleep would not be coming anytime soon.

Elsewhere in the house, Nikola was rattling around, probably raiding the wine cellar.

Though life was often unpredictable, some things never changed.

Smiling, she went back to her reading. Tomorrow there would be more to do, but for the moment, Helen Magnus found a small measure of peace.


Reviews or comments, please!

Ql’yH -- A Klingon curse word so vile there is no translation. You know Henry can swear in Klingon : )

Tags: castle, crossover, fic, sanctuary
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