Castle and Martha visit Pi and Alexis’s new home. Castle isn’t thrilled with their new abode and isn’t doing a very good job of faking pleasantries.
What better than a grisly murder to put him in a good mood? Susannah Richland, a 28-year-old accountant, is found in an alleyway, her body posed as if her body was part of some religious ritual. Her palms have been scraped off, but she was killed with a dagger to the throat.
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Her boss said that Susannah had been acting strange lately and had asked for a week off. Castle and Beckett visit her apartment, only to find many books on medieval history and various religious symbols on her wall. They notify her next of kin, her cousin Henry, and he is surprised to hear about Susannah’s recent interests. She called him last night, claiming that she had something important to tell him, but was interrupted and never phoned back.
Castle thinks she conjured up a demon. They tracked her Metrocard and found security cameras tracking her in Washington Heights. Also on the security camera, a monk, following her. The man doesn’t turn his face toward the camera, but Beckett notices some surgical scars on his head.
Susannah made a phone call to a Professor Jason Byford before she was murdered. The two meet with the professor, and he shows them a copy of a will Susannah brought in. It’s the will of Theodore Rose, a stonemason from 1978. In it, he wrote clues to the location of his treasure.
Lanie narrows down the weapon used to kill Susannah as a double-edged sword and finds out that the killer scraped a symbol off her palm.
Ryan is able to identify the monk in the video as Benjamin Wade; he had brain surgery in prison and currently resides in the Bronx. Wade comes into the station and claims that he had a spiritual awakening after his surgery and that he was following Susannah to protect her from another man. He says she got into a cab with a Wicked banner, and Beckett puts him with a sketch artist to keep him nearby.
It turns out that Benjamin is an actual monk and has an alibi for the time of the murder. In the chapel, Castle recognizes the answer to one of Rose’s clues and finds the symbol, the one etched on Susannah’s hand, by the prayer candles.
There are only a few shops that would sell one of the swords used to kill Susannah, and Castle and Beckett find one hidden. After they head inside, Castle then spars with who seems to be Susannah’s killer, but turns out to be an actor. The symbols and letter are all part of an elaborate scavenger hunt for the New York Historical Institute.
Nolan Burns, director of the Institute, claims that the letter was made specifically for the game and its contestants. They can locate the names of the others from Game Ultra.
One of the contestants matches the description given by monk Wade, and it turns out everything on his application is bogus.
Ryan is able to track down the cab with the Wicked banner (WHAT?), and the cab driver says that Susannah asked him to drive around the neighborhood for 45 minutes.
Castle takes his work home with him, and after studying the various symbols, he and Beckett head back to the chapel. The symbols fit together! He finds a lever in the mouth of a carving, pulls it, and finds a hidden cave. It’s also the original crime scene; there’s a pool of blood by the coffin inside. Another clue from the letter leads to Castle finding the hidden coins, but as soon as he lifts it, they’re locked in.
They assume that Nolan Burns used the fundraiser to find the coins, and he did, but he did not kill Susannah. He spoke with her because she was a descendant of Theodore Rose.
They bring Susannah’s cousin back to the station. She called him many times in the past few weeks to tell him about the fundraiser and the coins. She wanted to give them away, but he wanted to keep them in the family. They argued, and like any great cousin, he slashed her throat with a sword.
The coins belong to the monastery, and they’ve donated them to the MET.
Castle visits Alexis to apologize for his behavior and offers to treat her to ice cream, but that won’t work this time. She wants some time away from her father.
Halloween episodes are never my favorite, because they usually go: “Oh, someone was killed by some paranormal force. Wait, no. A human did it.” But Castle’s one-liners were great. “He do rooster. No, that’s inappropriate.” And my absolute favorite: Pi: “What color is [the couch]?” Castle: “Free!”
Unsure if the references to Wicked were made to coincide with its 10-year anniversary. (Probably not.) Either way, very nice.