Monday was the big Season 7 finale of “Castle” and, though the episode revealed some dark secrets about Castle’s (Nathan Fillion) past, the big question on the minds of fans was how things would end for Beckett (Stana Katic).  Stana Katic has been entangled in contract negotiations with ABC and her return for Season 8 has yet to be confirmed. That meant her arc in episode 23, “Hollander’s Woods,” might have been the last viewers see of the character.

While investigating the mysterious murder of a woman found dead in the woods, a crime that reminded Castle of a childhood trauma, Beckett got called in to talk to a big wig at the police department (Lance Reddick) who chastised her for her often reckless methods and inappropriate relationship with Castle. Beckett did not back down, defending her police work and her marriage. It turned out it was all a game to test her resolve. Beckett was actually being vetted to possibly run for New York State Senate. Beckett told Castle, who said he would support her no matter what, but the episode ended with Beckett still up in the air.

That is fitting considering Beckett’s Season 8 return is still very much in the air. Monday’s episode was written while producers were still unsure if the show would be renewed, so there were traces of series finale-grade closure in the plotlines. By the time the episode aired, ABC had renewed “Castle” and Nathan Fillion had signed on to come back, but Stana Katic is still holding out.

It will be interesting to see how the show handles Katic’s departure if she is indeed gone for good. Though the Senate position gives the writers a way to take her off the police force, Castle’s declaration of support means it will be harder to justify the couple not being together. How would the show write the detective off?

Fans will have to wait for news about Katic’s contract negotiations to find out what will happen. “Castle” Season 8 is set to return next fall.