Season 3, Episode 2 (36)
Original Air Date - September 27, 2010
When a well-known psychic is found murdered, and it is discovered that she predicted her own death, Castle's fantasy-loving mind goes into overdrive, much to the dismay of the more logical-minded Beckett. As the two debate the merits of paranormal, magical phenomena, Beckett makes a connection between Castle and something the victim's daughter predicted for her future. On a more personal front, Castle must help his family though the loss of a loved one.
- Nathan Fillion - Richard Castle
- Stana Katic - Kate Beckett, Detective
- Molly C. Quinn - Alexis Castle (Castle’s Daughter)
- Susan Sullivan - Martha Rodgers (Castle’s Mother)
- Ruben Santiago-Hudson - Roy Montgomery, Captain
- Jon Huertas - Javier Esposito, Detective
- Seamus Dever - Kevin Ryan, Detective
- Tamala Jones - Lanie Parish, Medical Examiner
- Bess Armstrong – Paula Casillas
- Bre Blair – Toni Johnston
- Rachel Boston – Penny Marchand
- David Gianopoulos – Albert Moreno
- Evan Helmuth – Nick Johnston
- Kieren Hutchison – Cody Donnelly
- Mercedes Masöhn – Marina Casillas
- Rick Ravanello – Steve Adams
- Paige Rowland – Loreen Carter
Castle (about a psychic reading): She told me that a beautiful woman would one day move into my loft and stay with me forever. She neglected to mention it was my mother.
Castle: I’m just willing to admit that there are people in this world who are more sensitive than me.
Beckett: Now that’s not hard to believe.
Castle: Walked right into that one.
Castle: Let me guess – you were one of those annoying six-year old's who stopped believing in Santa Claus because you figured out he couldn’t travel faster than the speed of light?
Beckett: I was three and we didn’t have a chimney.
Castle (to Beckett): Oh, so you don’t believe in fate, but your “gut” has magical properties. That’s cool…Scully.
Castle (to Beckett): What police detective would willingly acknowledge that a layperson is as talented at solving crimes as she is?
Penny Marchand: Alexander.
Penny: Alexander. I don’t know who he is or what he means to you.
Beckett: I don’t know any Alexander.
Penny: You will. You will meet an Alexander and he will be extremely important to you. At some future date, he may save your life.
Castle (to Beckett): Go ahead, refute me.
Cody Donnelly: Reality gold, mate. Cody Donnelly Presents: famous mystery writer follows a tough, but beautiful New York cop around for research.
Castle: Ah, she’d never go for it. She’s a real b-
Beckett: Mr. Donnelly, I appreciate you coming. (To Castle) What are you doing here?
Castle: Uh, for the record, I was gonna say big rule follower. I was not discussing the case, I swear to God. Naked Heat comes out tomorrow and Cody, here, was admiring the billboards.
Cody: Is that your smoking hot silhouette on the posters, then?
Beckett: Castle, why is it so important to you that I believe all this stuff about fates and psychics and Santa Claus?
Castle: Because if you don’t believe in even the possibility of magic, you’ll never ever find it.
Beckett (to suspect): Do you think I’m that dumb?
Castle: She’s not that dumb.
Castle (to Beckett): Ask the Masons. Please, just this once…believe.
Esposito (to Ryan): You know what’s going on here?
Ryan: No. Not really.
Esposito: Me neither.
Beckett (to Castle): No matter what happens we will never speak of this again.
Castle: Before I forget, what did Penny say about Alexander?
Beckett: Oh, nothing. Just some silly stuff that didn’t really make any sense. Why?
Castle: Because my middle name is Alexander.
Beckett: I thought your middle name was Edgar.
Castle: Been perusing the personal section of the Richard Castle website again, have we? No, I changed my middle name to Edgar for Edgar Allen Poe back when I changed my last name to Castle. My given name is Richard Alexander Rodgers. What a coincidence, huh?
Martha: Richard, whatever mistakes I've made in my life ... I raised a good man.
- This episode was the Third episode to be filmed for season 3.
- The Librarian performed by Laura Scott
Full Episode Recap
A young woman enters a well-appointed office and calls her mother’s name. She becomes very concerned when, after searching for a bit, she finds a red stain on the carpet. She picks up her cell phone and dials her mother’s cell, pleading for her to answer. Instead, she hears muffled ringing coming from a nearby sofa bed. Frantically the young woman pulls off the sofa’s cushions, uncovering more blood, and unfolds the sofa bed to reveal her mother’s dead body.
Back at Richard Castle's loft, his mother, Martha Rodgers, enters the apartment and is surprised to find her son and granddaughter Alexis still at home. After Castle teases her about doing the Walk of Shame, Martha shows off a large diamond ring on her finger and says that her boyfriend Chet proposed to her the night before. Both Castle and Alexis are thrilled, but Martha cautions them not to get too excited since she told him she needed to think about it. Alexis protests that she thought Martha loved Chet, and Martha answers that she does love him, but that she fears that the thrill has gone out of their relationship lately. Alexis supposes that she should say no, and Castle teases that the loss of excitement hasn’t stopped Martha from pursuing a relationship before. Alexis adds that regardless of her decision, she’ll miss having Martha around. The two women look to Castle to agree, but before he can, his cell phone rings with Kate Beckett telling him about a murder.
Castle arrives at the crime scene and meets up with Beckett, Detective Javier Esposito, Detective Kevin Ryan, and Medical Examiner Lanie Parish. He is excited because he met the victim, Vivian Marchand, a well-known psychic medium when she did a reading for him at a party eight years ago. He says that she was correct in every one of her predictions, including one about a beautiful woman moving into his apartment and staying forever. This reference peaks Beckett’s and Lanie’s curiosity until Castle says that Vivian must have been talking about his mother.
Lanie says that the preliminary cause of death is stabbing in the back of the head with an ice pick, followed by being stuffed into the sofa and estimates that the time of death was sometime the previous afternoon. Esposito tells everyone that a building maintenance worker remembers seeing a man leave the back door to Vivian’s office at around 2:30 the previous afternoon, but does not have much in the way of a description. Ryan says he is confused about why the killer put the body in the couch and Lanie answers that scratches on Vivian’s cheek indicate that she tried to move, so she was alive when she was stuffed in the couch. Ryan locates Vivian’s day planner and finds a notation about a 3:00p.m. appointment with someone called T.J. He teases that maybe T.J. was a ghost and double checks with Castle that mediums can talk to the dead. Castle agrees, explaining that psychics can tell the future and mediums can tell the future and talk to the dead. Beckett calls both fake and explains that in her early years on the force she spent lots of time chasing down leads that never went anywhere that were called in by psychics to the department’s tip line. Castle disputes that he can speak to the dead, and says that he merely believes that some are more sensitive than him, a fact that Beckett disputes.
Later on, Castle and Beckett interview Vivian’s daughter, Penny Marchand, the young woman who found her mother’s body. Penny says that her mother had no enemies and that they last spoke around 1p.m. on Monday. Her mother said that she planned on meditating the rest of the day, having seen her last clients, a woman and her daughter. While Beckett is questioning Penny, Castle notices a mounted newspaper clipping about Vivian’s involvement with a case where she helped convict a man of murdering his wife. Penny proudly says that her mother reported to the police having had a vision of the man in a bar with a blonde woman named Amber. Penny says that case and the man’s conviction, despite his claims of innocence, got her mother lots of notoriety and that she continued helping police departments all over the country, eventually putting a dozen criminals in jail over the last 10 years.
At the precinct, Beckett asks Ryan to look into the criminals Vivian helped put away to see if any are out of prison and possibly seeking revenge. He tells her that Vivian’s 1p.m. Monday appointment is waiting for Beckett in the lounge – a mother, Paula Casillas, and her daughter, Marina Casillas – and that they claim to have gotten a good look at the man leaving Vivian’s office that was identified by the building maintenance worker. Marina explains that when they left Vivian’s office, they noticed a man waiting for her, and that Vivian seemed surprised by his visit. She adds that the man seemed upset. Paula recalls that Vivian called him Albert or Alfred. Beckett gets ready to dismiss the two, when Castle interrupts and tries to prove his point to Beckett about the accuracy of psychic mediums by asking about their experience with Vivian. Paula tells him that they had been seeing Vivian for about 4 months, since her husband Emilio died and that she was helping them get closure. She says Vivian knew many things about Emilio, such as the fact that he made vitamins for a living and that he was a workaholic who died at the office. Marina adds that at their last session Vivian told them that she felt like he had something important to tell them and that she planned on communing with the spirits to hear his message. And that now she and her mom will never know what he had to say.
Later, Esposito informs Beckett that the Albert that Paula Casillas remembered is Albert “The Blade” Moreno, former muscle for a notorious crime family. He further explains that Moreno was a client of Vivian’s who she had advised to invest in a real estate deal which she said would bring him true happiness. The deal went sour and he lost all his savings in the process. Castle and Beckett arrive at Moreno’s foreclosed-upon home and interview him. Moreno confirms Esposito’s information and that he did see Vivian the day she died. He also confirms that he was upset when he went to see her, but mainly because she cancelled their last appointment and stopped answering his phone calls. When Beckett asks him whether or not their meeting developed into a physical confrontation, he goes on to say that Vivian was most likely nervous when he showed up and that she begged him to let the universe sort itself out. He left at around 2:30 when Vivian said she was late for a meeting uptown. He then went to meet his real estate broker, whose partner turned out to be Loreen, his high school sweetheart. Moreno says that his reconnecting with Loreen fulfilled Vivian’s prediction about the universe sorting itself out. Beckett is surprised and Castle jumps on Vivian’s correct prediction to Beckett’s chagrin.
Outside, Beckett says that Moreno still might have had time to kill Vivian before going to meet his broker. Castle brings her back to Moreno bumping into his high school sweetheart, which Beckett chalks up to coincidence rather than fate. Castle presses her, asking if she believes in things like fate, soul mates, unicorns, fairies, and double rainbows. When Beckett says no, he then asks her if she was one of those “annoying” kids who hit age 6 and then stopped believing in Santa Claus. Beckett retorts that she was three and that her family had no chimney.
Back at the precinct, Beckett tells Esposito that her gut tells her that Moreno isn’t their killer, but that she still wants to verify his alibi, causing Castle to tease her about the fact that she trusts her gut, but not fate or other supernatural phenomena. Ryan reports that he and Esposito have been looking through Vivian’s client files and found that she made frequent trips to the Hall of Records and had autopsy files in her possession. Beckett says that the intimate information she collected is evidence that she thoroughly researched her clients before seeing them then mislead them into thinking that she knew personal information about their loved ones due to her psychic powers. She even guesses that Vivian researched him before she did the reading on him eight years ago and that she had researched the Casillases. When Castle asks Beckett to explain how Vivian knew that the real estate deal would bring Moreno true happiness, Beckett responds that she merely got lucky. Castle goes on to theorize that Vivian couldn’t read her clients using her psychic gift alone and that she supplemented her feelings with research like he supplements his imagination for his books with research. Along with Beckett, Ryan and Esposito are unmoved with Castle’s argument.
Later that night at Castle’s loft, Alexis sits around a Ouija board with Martha trying to find an answer to her problem about Chet’s proposal. When the board gives an indefinite answer about whether or not Martha should return the ring, Martha says that she doesn’t need the spirits to tell her when to end a relationship. Alexis asks her if she’s sure she’s not being hasty and comments that relationships need work. Martha disagrees, saying that relationships are about chemistry and passion. Castle also agrees with Martha. Alexis asks the two if they can say for sure that they didn’t have doubts about ending a relationship too soon simply because the thrill was gone and uses her Dad’s reunion with his ex-wife Gina as an example. Castle says that the thrill was gone before, but that it is back now with a vengeance, although Gina remains high maintenance and a shopaholic. Martha apologizes to Alexis and pronounces the relationship over.
The next day Castle arrives at the precinct and Ryan tells him that he and Beckett are thinking that looking into the criminals Vivian helped put away is leading nowhere, since most of the 12 people Vivian helped put in jail are still in jail. He also tells Castle that he checked with a couple of the lead detectives who investigated the cases Vivian helped on and they say they’ve never heard of her. Beckett concludes that Vivian must have exaggerated her involvement in the cases for the publicity. Castle counters, saying that maybe the detectives don’t want to admit that they were working with a psychic, just like Beckett is often reluctant to admit that his help has been instrumental to solving their cases. Beckett swears on her badge that Vivian is not a psychic, only to have Esposito enter with a letter Vivian sent the precinct the day she died. In the letter, written on Vivian’s stationary, she writes that she expects to be murdered and describes a vision she had where she could not breathe, she saw a man dressed in black, she visualized the number 7518 and could hear a pounding sound. Castle’s imagination is thrilled at this development, Beckett much less so, guessing that it is a red herring sent to lead them off in a useless direction. She asks Ryan to run the letter in hopes of finding a fingerprint. She then leaves with Castle and Ryan momentarily wonders if Vivian did predict her own death. Esposito quickly shoots him down.
Beckett and Castle arrive at the morgue and Lanie says that she is putting the time of death between 5 and 7 p.m. on Monday, ruling out Albert Moreno, Beckett adds. Lanie says she found no scratches on the ice pick blade, meaning it was bought especially for the murder, and that she found Vivian’s cell phone in her hand. She also guesses that Vivian may have tried dialing her daughter’s cell phone while trapped – she found the numbers 171855 typed into the phone, which match her daughter’s cell phone number. Castle gets excited at the number sequence, remembering the numbers 7518 that Vivian put into her letter to the police department, even though the numbers are the wrong order in the letter. Beckett chalks it up to coincidence and the two continue to debate all the way back to the Homicide division.
Castle challenges Beckett to refute how Vivian could have known about the number sequence before being killed. Beckett theorizes that Vivian is in the process of dialing her daughter’s cell phone when the killer enters, stabs her in the head, stuffs her and the phone in the couch and puts the numbers in the letter along with the other predictions. Esposito tells the two that the letter isn’t yielding any usable prints or DNA. He also says that the last mail pick up at Vivian’s building is 6p.m., leading Beckett to conclude that the killer would have had plenty of time to put the letter together then mail it to throw the police off their scent. Beckett also notes that the letter isn’t signed with Vivian’s signature. Esposito then says that Penny told him that Vivian often didn’t sign her name to letters in case her predictions didn’t turn out to be true and to prevent someone from selling her mistakes on the internet.
Ryan then interjects that the man from Vivian’s first solved case, Steve Adams, who served 7 years for the murder of his wife thanks to Vivian, is out of jail and that the ankle monitor he wears put him at Vivian’s address Monday afternoon from 1:46 until 2:48. Beckett guesses that Adams waited for Vivian to leave for her 3 p.m. appointment, then jumps her, stabs her and stuffs her in her couch. Adams is brought in, loudly accusing the police of harassment and claiming that he hasn’t done anything wrong. He also wears all black, which Beckett again says must be a coincidence.
In interrogation, Adams says that last week he got a call from Cody Donnelly, a reality television producer saying that he could help him clear his name. Donnelly found proof that Vivian was a customer in the bar where she claimed to have seen Adams with Amber, the woman he was cheating with, so she did see him, but not in a vision. Adams says that he was bitter that Vivian lied to the police, then made up other visions she said she had where she saw him kill his wife, so he agreed to go on Cody’s reality television show “You’ve Ruined My Life” and confront Vivian about her fraudulent work. Adams says that he and Cody waited outside Vivian’s office for almost an hour and that he did very dramatically confronted her. She freaked and took off and he never saw her again. Later, Beckett says that the GPS on his ankle bracelet puts him at home at Vivian’s time of death and asks Ryan to get some witnesses to verify his location since ankle bracelets can be tampered with. She also asks Ryan to contact Cody Donnelly so she can interview him and see the footage he shot of Adams’ confronting Vivian.
That night, Martha returns to Castle’s loft, still wearing her engagement ring. When Castle notices this, she tearfully tells him that Chet died of a stroke in his sleep overnight and that when she went to his home to give him back the ring, she was met by his family members who told her how she was the love of his life and how happy he had been since they had been dating. Despite feeling guilty and devastated that she did not reciprocate his feelings, she stayed with the family all day. She feels even worse that they want her to give the eulogy at his funeral. Castle hugs Martha and tries to comfort her.
The next morning at the precinct, Beckett, Ryan and Esposito, without Castle, review the footage Cody Donnelly shot of Adams’ confrontation with Vivian Marchand. The video confirms Adams’ story and Ryan pulls the partial license plate number off the cab Vivian used to get away to find out where the cab took her. Beckett notices Penny Marchand entering and quickly tells the guys to turn off the video.
Penny asks Beckett if they can speak privately and Beckett leads her into the break room. Penny tells Beckett that she thinks she has a touch of her mother’s gift and that she had a dream about Beckett the night before that she feels compelled to share with her. With Beckett’s agreement, Penny blurts out the name Alexander, and that she doesn’t know what, if any, significance it has to Beckett. Beckett says she doesn’t know an Alexander and Penny says that someday she will meet someone with that name, that he will be very important to her, and that one day he may even save her life. Beckett plays along politely, though inwardly she doubts Penny’s vision.
Not long after, Castle sits in the interrogation room with Cody Donnelly, where Donnelly tells Castle that he thinks the idea of a reality show where Castle shadows Beckett would be very successful. Castle is in the process of telling Cody that he doubts Beckett would go for it, when Beckett enters, forcing him to change the subject. He covers by telling Beckett that Cody was merely admiring the poster art for his second Nikki Heat book, Naked Heat. Cody asks if Beckett’s attractive body was used as a model for the artwork, and she flatly responds no, then turns the guys back to the investigation. Cody says that after getting the footage of Adams confronting Vivian, he dropped Adams off at his place at about 3:30 just before Vivian called him offering him an even better story if he never showed her footage. He says that she told him that she was hot on the trail of another killer and that she wanted to invite him to follow her when she confronted the soon-to-be-accused. She told him to be ready to go at a moment’s notice and that she only had one last detail to follow up on. A couple hours later he got a text from her and got his crew already, tried to call her, but got no answer.
Afterward, Beckett tells Castle that Vivian had several clients who came to her for her help in solving a murder, but that their cases never progressed any further. Ryan comes in and says that he found out that Vivian’s cab took her to an address registered to a Nick and Toni Johnston. Castle then makes the connection between Toni Johnston and the T.J. that was written in Vivian’s calendar. As the two walk to Toni Johnston’s apartment, Castle guesses that Vivian had to be looking for something important, otherwise she wouldn’t have put Cody and his crew on standby, then predicts that Beckett will only call it a coincidence. When Beckett asks him why he is insisting on making her believe in the unexplained, he makes an impression on her by saying that if she doesn’t believe in even the possibility that magic exists, she’ll never find it.
They find Toni Johnston, who reveals that she had an affair with her husband’s boss and that Vivian contacted her out of the blue and told her that she knew all about it. She also says that Vivian asked if Toni’s husband, Nick, had a temper and said that she was sure he knew about the affair as well. Castle, secretly trying to win another point in his debate with Beckett, asks Toni if Vivian ever told her how she knew about the affair, and Toni says that Vivian told her that the married man told her about it in a vision after he died 4 months ago. She then identifies her lover as Emilio Casillas.
Beckett and Castle have Lanie review Emilio Casillas’ autopsy report and she says that it indicates that he was suffering from alopecia and that his fingernails were thinning, both signs of poisoning by selenium overdose. Castle and Beckett then conclude that Nick Johnston got the selenium from the Casillas’ vitamin business, poisoned Emilio for having the affair with his wife, then found out that Vivian was onto him and killed her too.
The next day, Esposito reports that Nick Johnston’s foreman told him that Nick clocked out of work at 5 on the day Vivian was murdered and that Toni says that he got home at 7. Beckett says that that would have given Nick time to go to Vivian’s office, kill her, write the letter before the mail was picked up, then go home. Esposito also says that a woman matching Vivian’s description visited Nick at work on the day of Vivian’s murder. Beckett theorizes that Vivian was trying to lure Nick into coming to her office where Cody Donnelly’s camera crew would be waiting to film her confronting him with murdering Emilio. When she wonders how Vivian found out about the affair, Castle insists that she merely used her psychic powers. Ryan debunks that idea by saying that Vivian suspected the affair when Paula said in their sessions that Emilio had been working longer hours. She confirmed her suspicions when she found that the Starburst Hotel was the closest hotel to Emilio’s work that charged by the hour and when the manager to her that Emilio had been a regular guest. To answer Castle’s question about how Vivian found out that the affair was with Toni, Ryan brings out a photo Vivian found on the bulletin board at Emilio’s company where Toni and Emilio can be seen standing close to each other and looking lovingly into each others’ eyes at the company Christmas party.
In interrogation, Nick confirms that Vivian visited him at work and told him that she had to see him, so he punched out early and went to her office, only she didn’t answer the door even after he pounded on it for some time. He also admits that he knew about the affair and confronted Emilio about it, threatening to tell Paula, but that Emilio said he was in love with Toni and that he didn’t care what Nick did. Nick decided to try to save his marriage instead of trying to ruin Emilio’s, so he kept quiet. When he heard that Emilio died, he figured that the stress of cheating on his wife caught up to him. Ryan interrupts the interrogation with news that Penny Marchand is back and urgently needs to see Beckett.
Beckett and Castle step out and talk to Penny who says that she had another dream that she needs to tell Beckett about. Beckett says that she doesn’t have time to talk about her mystery man named Alexander, a reference which gets Castle’s attention, and Penny says that in her most recent dream, her mom reveals the identity of her killer by telling Penny that the only way she will get closure is if she “asks the Masons.” Beckett is still dubious, but listens.
Afterward, Ryan says that Steve Adams’ alibi checked out and Beckett says that she released Nick Johnston. Ryan goes on to say that the Casillas’ alibi for the night of the murder checked out also: they were having dinner at a restaurant near Vivian’s office called Mason’s. Castle immediately connects Penny’s dream to the name of the restaurant, but Beckett remains skeptical. He finally convinces her to check into it with the staff at Mason’s, and she makes him promise never to bring up the fact that she trusted a psychic’s prediction if it bears out.
Later, Castle and Beckett interrogate Paula and Marina Casillas. Through questioning Beckett establishes that the two went to dinner at Mason’s the night Vivian was killed, but that Paula left for about 20 minutes in the middle of dinner. Marina says it was to buy a bottle of wine to have with dinner, but Beckett says that the liquor store confirmed to her that Paula bought the bottle earlier in the day along with an ice pick. Beckett describes how Paula left the restaurant, murdered Vivian, retrieved the bottle of wine, and returned to dinner, all to cover up the fact that she had murdered Emilio with the selenium for having an affair. Paula says she suspected when Vivian told them Emilio had something crucial to tell them, that it was the fact that Paula had killed him and she couldn’t let him reveal her secret.
Outside, Castle asks Beckett if she ever found out who wrote the letter. She answers that she didn’t have time and the two begin spinning theories about who wrote it. Beckett says that Paula could have done it, being in Vivian’s office when Nick arrived and hearing his pounding on her door. Castle finally refutes a theory of Beckett’s by saying that Paula would have been back at the restaurant by the time Nick arrived, leaving Vivian as the only one who heard Nick’s pounding.
Castle begins to walk out, then turns and asks Beckett about Penny’s reference to a Alexander. Beckett dismisses it as foolishness, but asks why Castle wants to know when he looks disappointed. He then tells her that his middle name is Alexander. When she says that she thought his middle name was Edgar, he says that he changed his middle name to Edgar in deference to Edgar Allan Poe at the same time that he changed his last name from Rodgers, making his birth name Richard Alexander Rodgers. He muses briefly about the coincidence, and then leaves while Beckett smiles, thinking about Penny’s prediction.
That night, Castle returns to his loft with Martha from Chet’s funeral. Martha says that Chet’s children were very gracious about taking the ring back, but that she still feels terrible that she almost broke Chet’s heart. Castle tries to console his mother by saying that her indecision gave Chet one more day of hope. Martha counters by saying that he now knows the truth – that he almost gave his heart to a woman who didn’t deserve him. Castle pushes the Ouija board to Martha and she asks Chet if he forgives her. When Castle pushes the indicator to the “no” space, Martha sees through his trick. He then tells her that, despite all her faults and now knowing the truth, he believes that Chet still loved her. They hug and before both go to bed, Martha tells Castle that despite the mistakes she made in her life, she raised a good man.
Who: Vivian Marchand, a well-known psychic
Found: By her daughter, stuffed in a fold-out couch
How: Stabbed to death in the head with an ice pick and suffocation from being trapped in the couch
Who: Emillio Casillas
Found: unknown location, several (4 or 5) months ago
Where Killed: at home, over time ...
How: Slowly Poisoned by chemicals from his factory ... at home
Killer: Paula Casillas
- Vivian - To prevent Vivian from revealing the fact that Paula killed her husband, Emillio, for cheating on her
- Emillio - jealousy - he was having an affair