black_sluggard: (dark crack)
Title: You Bet Your Life
Series: Life
Fandoms: Castle
Rating: PG-13
Genre: Friendship, Fluff, Angst.
Warnings: AU, genre!crack, zombies, unbetad.
Characters/Pairings: Javier Esposito, Richard Castle, Kevin Ryan.
Wordcount: 610
Summary: On writer-wrangling and rites of passage.
Details: Takes place in the same universe as "Quality of Life" where Javier is a zombie, and Montgomery is still alive. Most other fics in that 'verse are slash, but it doesn't really enter into this one.


"Jesus, Castle, sit still. You're going to be fine."

Not for the first time, Javier asked himself why the hell it wasn't Beckett sitting here. The hand-holding and writer-wrangling was her job. He wasn't cut out to be anyone's babysitter...

Case in point, the way said writer seemed determined to flat-out ignore just about every damned thing he said. For perhaps the third time, Castle took the mouthpiece away from his lips, capturing him in a petulantly narrowed gaze.

"You know," Castle said, "You're probably the worst person to reassure me about this."

"Leave it in please, Mr. Castle," the nurse reminded, irritation creeping into her voice. She was probably long past being as sick of the reminders as Javier was.

Proving once again the greater ease with which it was possible for a female to get him to do just about anything, Castle stuck the tube of the nebulizer back in his mouth with a frustrated huff.

Yeah. This was
so not his job.

"Extenuating circumstances," Javier defended, irritated by the distinction. If it were anyone
but Castle, he might have taken actual offense. "The treatments work. Trust me, I did this plenty of times before."

Javier
didn't bother mentioning the fact that facial and neck wounds—like the shallow, bruising bite beneath the bandage on Castle's throat—were the most likely to net failures of treatment. Like rabies, onset of IHN seemed to arrive faster the shorter the route was to the brain. Still, the odds remained firmly in the writer's favor. Calming him down and keeping his mouth shut long enough to finish the inhaled treatments was the issue.

"But—"

"An acquired toxic reaction to silver is
very rare," the nurse reassured him, and yeah, Javier thought she looked familiar. She might have been on the ward when he had his...incident. "And you can't develop a reaction to the treatments if you've never taken them. So this first time at least, I'd say you're safe."

"C'mon, Castle," Kevin said lightly, "Think of it as a rite of passage. Most cops go through this at some point. Even
Beckett's done it at least once."

That at least seemed to finally calm him down a bit. Typically, however, giving him that much information only made him curious...

"How many times
have you guys done this?" Castle asked, once more letting the mouthpiece leave his lips.

"Five," Javier told him simply, just wanting the conversation to be over.

Then, looking over, he noticed Kevin was counting on his fingers. He filled both hands before sheepishly raising one more. Even Javier was surprised.

"
Eleven? Seriously?"

"Dude, I worked Narcotics, remember?"

And Javier was forced to admit that made sense. Intravenous drug use was directly or indirectly responsible for a large proportion of exposures. More cases of IHN began with dirty needles than bites, these days, and even many of the latter could be traced back to unlucky addicts who let themselves slip out of control rather than report their exposure and seek treatment. It could take days for the initial anemia to become noticeable, and the fever could last longer than a week—plenty of time to spread the disease, even before the worst symptoms made themselves felt.


Unfortunately, this revelation nearly spelled doom for the task at hand.

Once the nurse stepped in—loudly asking Castle if she needed to tape a mask over his nose—Kevin shot him a look, and the effort it clearly took to keep his face straight looked almost painful. Speaking under the nurse's arguments, his partner said:

"Ten bucks says he's going to need a followup because he can't shut up long enough."


Javier shook his head grimly.

"No bet."


Author's Note: I've had this one in my head ever since I made the video, since I used that scene from Vampire Weekend where that guy bit Castle. I couldn't not go there after that...
I decided to finally finish this one up because I feel like I owe you all. Think of it as a palate cleanser after Incubus...

Date: Wednesday, 4 January 2012 12:09 am (UTC)From: [identity profile] hyuuganeji11.livejournal.com
Gosh. Once again, I love how set in reality this is, that IHN isn't just "the scary zombie disease don't get bitten." It's a legit virus that can be transferred through needles. It's little things like that that make your fics awesome.

And also Kevin, so much win. Now I kinda want porn where Javi explores all the scars Kevin got from his narc days...

Date: Wednesday, 4 January 2012 12:25 am (UTC)From: [identity profile] dizzydrea.livejournal.com
ext_955120: (Default)
Then, looking over, he noticed Kevin was counting on his fingers. He filled both hands before sheepishly raising one more. Even Javier was surprised.

"Eleven? Seriously?"

"Dude, I worked Narcotics, remember?"


Yeah, that right there makes up for a lot. So funny, and mixed in with the funny is the informative. I keep trying to keep it all straight in my head. You know, just in case IHN ever actually becomes an epidemic. I'll be using your fic as a survival guide, I think.

Great Slice of Life!

Date: Wednesday, 4 January 2012 04:08 am (UTC)From: [identity profile] dylan-dufresne.livejournal.com
Yeah. This was so not his job.

Snerk!

Castle? A bad patient? Notice my shock. Heh.

This was fun. :)

Date: Saturday, 10 March 2012 11:52 pm (UTC)From: [personal profile] lark_ascends
lark_ascends: Blue and purple dragonfly, green background (Default)
Very well done.

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