The second of three pieces, the first being 'Candle on the Water.' This one focuses on Booth where the first focuses on Brennan. In this one:
Booth is distraught after the team find the remains of an old army friend of his. He tries not to let it show, but there is one person he cannot fool……
It amazed Booth how the sound of a roaring fire could drown out all the other things he didn't want to think about. He couldn't feel the anger or the pain, he could no longer hear the voice of Bones, telling him the name of the victim over and over as it had been since that morning. The fire took away everything, leaving him numb and empty. It was dark, and yet the air was still hot and sticky. The sand was cool though. He let it slip through his toes again and again as he sat cross legged, next to the fire. He watched the flames. They seemed to dance a warior like dance, vibrant colours thrashing themselves around, roaring angrily, relentlessly. His eyes went out of focus as he thought back to that morning.
"Booth, I think you should sit down." Bones looked at him, a sorrowful expression on her face.
He sat down, worried by her tone of voice.
"What is it? Is everything ok?"
Bones closed the door and strode slowly to face him at his desk.
"Booth...those remains we found at the CIA base..." she stopped, not knowing how to tell him.
He didn't say anything.
"They...they have been identified as...Steven Leeson."
Booth didn't say anything. He sat very calmly in his chair, staring intently at Bones.
"No it can't be. I'm afraid you must have made some mistake."
Bones swallowed and looked at her colleague worriedly.
"Booth, there was no mistake. It's him."
"No it can't be because I'm meeting him tonight. How can he be dead if I'm playing baseball with him tonight? It's not him."
Hodgins moved behind Bones. He looked at her and shook his head.
"Booth, buddy, I know its hard to take in, but these tests are never wrong..."
Booth was quiet for a moment. A muscle in his cheek clenched, then he got up and left the office abrubtly.
Steven Leeson. His best friend was dead.
Booth rubbed his tired eyes. He had been staring into the flames for a long time- his coffee had gone cold. The fire was going out so he got up and piled more wood onto it.
It musn't go out. It musn't die. He wouldn't let it.
Booth looked up into the sky. It was littered with stars. He had always liked the stars, ever since he was a young child. He remembered when he and Steven had made a tree house and insisted on sleeping in it. They had tried relentlessly to count the stars, but eventually they always lost count and fell asleep.
Well now Steven was asleep, and he wasn't going to wake up and throw down a rope ladder to his best friend.
Booth wiped his damp cheek on the back of his white sleeve. He was disgusted with himself for crying. After all the things he had seen and done, he had thought that nothing would ever hurt this badly again. But it did. It hurt more than anything, and there was nothing he could do about it. Steven had always been the one to talk about things when he found the job hard, but Booth had found it strangely comforting to listen- he knew that way, that he wasn't alone.
Now he was alone, and always would be.
He would keep the fire going all night if he had to, to drown it all out, to take away the angry sadness engulfing him, to stave off the lonliness that wouldn't leave him alone.
There was a tiny rustling sound behind him. He didn't turn- he didn't want whoever it was to see him upset like this.
The hand on his arm weakened him.
He turned his head to find himself sitting in the sand next to Dr. Temperence Brennan.
"Bones," he sniffed and chuckled, trying to disguise the fact that he had been crying.
"You don't have to pretend Booth, It's ok to mourn for someone you love."
She sat down close to him, her voice low and quiet.
Booth smiled weakly, about to protest that he hadn't been crying, that actually a fly had flown into his eye.
But he wanted to tell her. He wanted to tell her everything, to pour his heart out and cry on her shoulder. He swallowed and bent his head fowards.
She took his hand in hers and squeezed it.
"Hey, you got a friend."
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Thanks for reading this far- please please go one tiny step further and leave a review- feedback is always very helpful.
One more piece to come!
Thank you muchly!