A dead smuggler leads to a cache of stolen artifacts — and possibly one magic lamp
“Al” is off the digital grid and hiding in a seedy motel. Not from the police, of course. From the genie, who he believes is out to get him. Lars’ death was the latest blow in a string of unlucky incidents. He’s in the middle of a nervous breakdown during his interrogation but still gives up some valuable details about the smuggling operation. Lars and Mike were working for an anonymous sponsor. Once they discovered Solomon’s tomb and had their artifacts in hand, Lars hired someone to ship the goods out of the country for them. But the shipper held the goods hostage when he found out how much they were potentially worth. Some customs research shows that a rug importer named Yuruk Sezen was the only recipient of cargo from that ship in question. The boys head down to his establishment to question him. In the process of checking whether or not any of his carpets can fly, Castle finds a very dead Yuruk wrapped up in one.
Dr. Baker tells Castle that a universal element of the genie legend is that a genie who loses its master is separated from the lamp until a new master rubs it. And Beckett doesn’t know who the mystery blonde is (because a quick Google search says she’s not Lindsay Dillon), but she knows she’s getting Castle’s hopes up about this “three wishes” things. Castle becomes convinced that the blonde is his “Ronin genie” and that she’s hanging around him for a reason. Beckett’s first wish? “That my man would stop talking about being some skeezy blonde’s master.” Even so, Beckett asks a favor of Ryan and Esposito before they head out to the rug store. If they do find that lamp, could they humor Castle and let him get his hands on it first? Beckett doesn’t believe in this stuff for a second, but it’s so important to her that Castle isn’t unnecessarily crushed. His goofiness and optimism and wonder make him who he is. She loves him for it, not in spite of it.
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Castle does get to the lamp first, though it’s not because Rysposito let him have it. He wanders off when those two are casing behind the store. He spots the artifact through the window of the store’s storage warehouse and promptly falls through it. At gun point, he’s still not giving up hope that the criminals packing up these stolen antiquities are doing so because they think there’s a wish-granting immortal entity inside. (“What are you, 5?”) The mystery blonde appears again, this time at the very same moment that Castle’s hand brushes the lamp and the woman holding him hostage moves to pull the trigger. Smoke kicks up and obscures his vision, but Castle can’t help but notice he’s not dead. The wish worked, he thinks, but do genies usually need 2x4s to carry them out? His savior gets him to safety and — surprise — disappears. But by the time he returns to the precinct, his mystery blonde has a name and an occupation.
She’s Genevieve Sutton, a fixer who was hired by the same secret benefactor as Lars to make sure that Lars and Mike were successful. This benefactor was exactly that: someone with deep pockets and selfless motives. Her employer, Genevieve tells Beckett, had an interest in removing priceless items from the Turkey-Syrian border so they couldn’t be sold to fund terrorism. Because she’s good at what she does, Genevieve got the plate of the truck that drove off with the smuggled goods. Beckett and Esposito listen on the scanner as officers pull the truck over and triumph in a shoot-out. There are eleven crates in the vehicle; one less than the dozen Genevieve promised.
Lanie’s examination of both victims bodies proved that Lars and Yuruk were both killed by women. Phoebe, the “woman thug” who nearly shot Castle, was just the muscle in this situation. She’s working for a paycheck. Castle can think of one woman he met during the investigation who’d have wanted revenge on Lars and the contents of that 12th crate. Dr. Baker is better with a scimitar than most tenured humanities professors, but she’s bad with getting away with things. Cops find the lamp in her home; the symbol of the consuming spite and jealousy she harbored for a former pupil who found a historic site that had evaded her for her entire career. The lamp she stole and the rest of the artifacts will be tied up with the courts for years. That’s a fine outcome for Mr. X, the Jordanian prince who put up his own money to preserve history. Genie — I mean, Genevieve — leaves Castle with a wink. He still wants to believe.
Odds & Ends:
- Someone explain the melon thing to me in the comments.
- Oprah’s assistant waits for no man.
- “I love being a captain. It’s just sometimes it feels like I’m more of a kindergarten teacher… Guys, play nice. Indoor voices. Espo goes first.”
- Tony winner Kevin Ryan and MMA Champion Javier Esposito would still be best friends.