Chapter 6:

Booth liked his morning pie. He liked the crunchy crust. He liked the way his molars could turn it into nothing more than dust. He liked the sweet apples with a cinnamon tinge or the sour cherries that make him pucker his lips. He even liked the coffee swirling the taste of the pie down his throat, even if everyone else thought it was only second-rate coffee. But what made it all the better, was undoubtedly the company.

Every other morning Booth would swing by the good doctor's apartment building at five past seven. She would always roll her eyes as he held the door of the passenger side of his car. But she was used to his antics, and would get in all the same. She knew it was pointless to resist, but she would always remind him that he was the one making her late for work.

And when they finally got to the diner, their waitress, Kiffany, knew exactly what to get them; their usual, no questions asked: A piece of pie du jour for him, a Danish muffin with butter for her and a cup of coffee for both. They always sat at their usual table by the window. They would be speaking in low hushed voices, occasionally arguing until Kiffany came by with their breakfast. They would stop conversing, look up and politely say "Thank you" with a nod and a smile. He would dig into his pie and she would just watch him in silence.

It was a ritual; it was their ritual. Every Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and sometimes Sunday, they would be there.

Tuesday came and he set off to go to her apartment and waited. And waited, and when half an hour passed, he realized no one would be coming no matter how long he waited. He drove to the diner and sat himself down at their usual spot. But all he to look at was an empty chair opposite him. He looked down at his clasped hands until Kiffany presented him with their usual.

"Haven't seen you around lately. Where've you been?"

"Around. Nowhere really," he stared straight ahead.

Where's your lady friend?" she asked as she poured the coffee into his mug.

"Dead."

Kiffany, shocked by the revelation and how easily he had said it (as though it meant nothing), jerked back and the coffee streamed on to the table instead of the cup. The hot liquid spilled everywhere. Booth didn't even notice.

"I'm- I'm so sorry." It was when he looked at her, she noticed how tired the man looked. With dark rings under his eyes, he looked half dead. It was as though he hadn't gotten a good sleep in weeks.

"It's just a shirt," he responded in a monotonous tone, "Don't worry about it."

Kiffany did not know the agent well, but she knew that this Booth was empty. There was no smile, nor a twinkle in his brown eye, no colorful socks, tie or belt, no anything. Without Brennan, it seemed, he was only a small part of his former self; the rest had died with her. If that ain't love.

"I think I need to get going," he placed a twenty on the table a left the diner without another word. He hadn't even touched his pie.

When he got to the lab everything seemed quieter. There was no chatter up on the lab platform, just hushed whispers. The machines of the lab hummed quietly; an eerie atmosphere had masked the lab. Everything seemed more dreary and gloomy that it ever had before.

His feet made his way to her office; he hadn't even noticed that they were taking him there. He just stood there in front of the glass door that lead into her workspace. The blinds were down and the lights had been turned off.

He didn't care that the squints passing by where murmuring about him. Let them whisper all they want. When he felt a small hand brush his shoulder, he flinched. He turned to see it was just Angela. Her eyes were red and swollen from crying, and so much pain was held within. The two friends embraced, both seeking the comfort of one another.

Her funeral had been the previous day; it had been the worst day of their lives. She wanted to be cremated, and she had gotten her wish. Her ashes were strewn into the ocean. Only her closest friends had come, and surprisingly Russ had showed up as well. It was sad and there was not a one who did not shed tears. It a morose way, it had been beautiful. No one had spoken, no one had the energy to.

Her death still lingered heavily upon them all. Stepping out of the hug, Angela wiped away the tears that seemed to come way to often.

"We, uh-," she sniffed a little, "we have some new information if you want it? Zack has been working very hard. I think he hasn't stopped working since-"

She didn't finish her sentence; a silence filled the space. Finishing the sentence meant acknowledging the truth.

"Did you even have to ask?"

The squints hadn't been able to offer much new information; they identified the cause of death and it had been the same for all the victims; Shot to the sixth thoracic vertebrae, most likely severing the spinal cord and letting the victim die of blood loss. The weapon as well as the victim's identities had yet to be identified, but Zack hoped to have the results in within the day.

The mood of the squints had been sullen, and it started to become suffocating. He had to get out of the lab. Going to work wasn't an option either. Not quite yet anyways. He needed a break, he needed to get away from it all. He couldn't breath, couldn't think, couldn't live. It was too much. She had been fine the last time he had seen her. How could a person making full recovery just die.

Why didn't her protect her from getting shot in the first place? It was all his fault. Her death, it was all because of him. He should have been there, should have been with her at all times, maybe then she would still be alive, even if he wasn't. He would have done anything to protect her, and while he would never admit it to her, it was the truth. On some level he loved her, more deeply than any person should have ever loved. Just like everything good in his life, she was gone. Just like his childhood, just like Rebecca, just like Parker.

He was so angry. Why would God be so cruel to him? He was devout to his faith, pretty much anyways, was an honest man, what did he do to deserve this?

He slammed the door to his apartment shut with such force, the pictures on the walls began to shake. He tossed his keys aside, and sat down on the couch. Sitting didn't last long, and he got up and began pacing the room. Annoyed, he rubbed his temples and let out a loud growl of frustration. He turned to the wall. He pulled back his arm and punch the wall as hard as he could. He didn't feel the skin on his knuckles peel back, or the red blood trickle down his hand. He didn't feel the hot tears leaking out of the corner of his eyes. He didn't feel anything…

A/N: This story has been on hiatus for a while, but it's back now. This chapter is meant to give you insight to Booth's feelings (which is basically him being manic depressive). Hope you liked it. R&R