A/N: This went in a completely different direction than I anticipated, but I hope you like it all the same! I promise that I am working on 'Murphy' and 'Chapel'. I have chapters in the works for both of them. Enjoy!
Angela Montenegro laughed heartily as she clinked glasses, "Bottoms up, Bren."
Temperance Brennan grinned before lifting the shot glass to her lips. The shot of tequila burned as the liquid traveled down her throat. She made a face as she handed the glass back to the toga-dressed waiter, "Thanks."
Angela smiled wistfully as the hunky waiter turned from the pair, continuing his duty to pass out shots and get many of the partygoers even drunker. Turning her attention away from the chiseled Caesar, she said to her friend, "Don't you just love Halloween?"
Brennan smirked, "You mean the celebration of a holiday that has been commercialized from an authentic religious ceremony to an excuse to eat pounds of candy and dress up in ridiculous costumes?"
"You know Bren, sometimes you can be a real party pooper."
Temperance frowned, "I don't know what that means."
Angela waved over another waiter, "It means," she said thrusting another drink into her hand, "it's time for another drink."
Both women tossed back the shots, and then broke into a fit of coughs.
"Uck," Angela said, a look of disgust on her face, "I don't know even want to know what that was."
Brennan nodded with a similar expression, "Me either."
The two turned, noticing Jack Hodgins in his pirate costume as he approached.
"Hodgins." Brennan acknowledged with a nod.
"Whoa, hello Doctor Brennan." Hodgins said staring appraisingly at the anthropologist.
Brennan glared at Angela, "I told you this costume was too…too…"she fumbled for the words.
Angela shrugged, "Sexy?"
"Yes, for lack of a better word." Brennan said looking down at herself.
Angela had bullied her into buying the 'sexy doctor' costume that she currently donned as a joke. The entire outfit consisted of a very short and abbreviated version of a buttoned-up, white lab coat—one that felt about two sizes too small and showed an uncomfortable amount of cleavage…at least for Brennan. The three-inch, white knee-high boots and stethoscope added the perfect final touches.
Hodgins nodded, "No offense Dr. Brennan, but you look hot."
Angela swatted his arm, "Hey!"
"Ouch," Hodgins rubbed his arm, "What was that for? I was just paying the boss lady a compliment."
"Hello? Remember me—your girlfriend?" Angela asked.
Hodgins rolled his eyes, "I've already told you how hot you look." He leaned in and whispered in her ear, "Remember…before the guests arrived."
Angela blushed, indeed remembering the activities that followed when Jack had seen her in her purple belly dancer outfit. Her reply was cut off as Brennan cleared her throat. Oops…did she forget to mention that she was dating Jack? Changing the subject she looked around the room.
"Anyone seen Booth yet?" she asked.
Brennan shook her head, "He said he'd be here a little late. He's supposed to take Parker trick-or-treating."
Angela nodded in understanding, "So what is he dressing up as."
"I don't know, he said he wanted it to be a surprise." Brennan said with a shrug.
"He wouldn't tell you?" Angela asked incredulously, "I thought you two were dating. How can he not tell you?"
"We're not dating, Ange." She replied evasively.
"Please, you guys hang out all the time and you told me he kissed you last week. What do you call that then, if not dating?" Angela countered.
Hodgins decided it was time to get a round of drinks and leave the ladies to their conversation, something that he knew Angela would appreciate—besides she'd give him the whole scoop later.
"We haven't really talked about it." Brennan said, "It's complicated since we both work together…we don't want to jump into anything too fast." Two make-out sessions didn't count as too fast…did they?
"Well you guys better jump each other soon, that's all I have to say." Her friend giggled.
Brennan indulged Angela with a wicked grin before commenting on their surroundings. "I can't believe Hodgins actually lives here. This house is enormous."
Angela agreed, "You should see the upstairs, I think my entire apartment complex could fit up there."
"It's beautiful though, especially the garden out back."
The last of her sentence was drowned in the sound of the crowd cheering. The pair of women looked over in time to see Hodgins participating in a sword fight with another 'pirate'.
Angela groaned, "Oh, no. Sorry sweetie. I've gotta go before he makes himself look like even more of an idiot."
Brennan laughed, "I'll be fine. I think I might take a look around. I'll come find you when Booth gets here."
"Jack!" Angela said, drawing further away into the crowd of people. Temperance just shook her head and made her way from the room. She was thankfully for the first time that evening for her tiny costume, with the amount of people in attendance—along with the amount of alcohol she consumed it was starting to get a tad hot.
She found her outside in the chilly October night, welcoming the cool breeze that drifted over her skin. Her blue eyes, accented by the smoky eye shadow, roamed the large yard. She once again saw the darkened garden and felt drawn the beauty. The centerpiece was a water fountain that softly illuminated the garden. It made it hauntingly beautiful.
Brennan wondered the garden, stopping to admire the flowers every once in awhile. Her fingers brushed against one of the roses near the center of the garden. The soft pink petals drew her thoughts to the night before.
"Booth? What are you doing here?"
Booth stood in her doorway wearing a smile, "What? I can't just come and visit you now?"
Brennan blushed, sensing the meaning in his words. He was referring to the kiss they had shared after he walked her to her door after dinner.
"Of course," she covered her embarrassment and shifted so that he could enter. He drew his hand from behind his back, revealing to her a bouquet of pink roses. "For you." He said simply, leaning in to place a soft kiss on her cheek.
Sighing she remembered their evening had been cut short by a phone call from his boss and they never go the chance to discuss their plans for tonight. He had called letting her know that Rebecca had agreed to let him take Parker trick-or-treating and he would be late to Hodgins' party.
Moving past the flower gardens she started towards the tall maze of hedges that lined both sides of the pathway and made her way toward the large fountain in the center of the garden.
Brennan turned sharply at the whisper of her name. Her eyes traveled around the garden, looking for the source of the voice. Not seeing anyone she called out, "Who's there?"
Only the sound of the trickling fountain reigned in the air. Shaking her head, she thought she was imagining things. Ignoring the eerie feeling she had, she turned back to the fountain, mesmerized by the lights and the water.
"Who's there!" she shouted, after once again finding no one. "Angela, is that you? If you're trying to scare me, because it's not going to work!"
She heard something rattling to her left and jogged carefully around the tall bushes, intent on catching whoever was trying to scare her. Again, she found no one. Brennan looked back and noticed exactly how far she had traveled from the main house. In her mind she cursed Booth for making her watch all of those old horror movies last week. She knew it was irrational to be scared—but it was so damn dark out here! Didn't Hodgins invest in lights?
"This way, Temperance."
Brennan stomped in frustration, but followed the whisper. She could determine that the voice was from a woman, but was disappointed at every turn to find no one.
"I feel as I should warn you I'm trained in three different forms of martial arts!" she called, hoping for a response.
A gust of wind blew making Brennan shiver. She found her way back through the maze and began to walk quickly towards the house. Brennan heard the voice whisper her name again, followed by a rustling on the other side of the rose bush. She crept up to it slowly, all the time looking for a weapon to defend herself if needed. Maybe she should have bought the cop costume—at least that one came with a baton.
She raised her hands to prepare for a fight and leapt around the bush. "Hey!"
A man dressed in black startled, and turned. "Bones?"
Brennan frowned, "Booth?"
Seeley Booth stood staring at the image of his partner/sort of girlfriend…maybe.
"Bones, I've been lookin' everywhere for you."
Brennan dropped her hands, "How long have you been out here?"
Booth walked closer, "Just a minute or so. I started to get worried when I couldn't find you inside and Angela said you might be out here. What are you doing out here in the dark anyway?"
"I just…wanted to see the garden." She said lamely as her attention turned to his costume. He was dressed all black, with a black mask tied around eyes, making them look even darker. He had removed his hat, letting it hang behind him. She smiled at him when she saw he was admiring her in the same way.
"Can we go inside? I'm getting cold."
Booth nodded, "Yeah, let's get a drink…I'm sure I'm going to need to catch up to you and Angela." He joked.
A shadow moved out of the corner of her eye. Brennan frowned, "Actually I think I've had enough to drink for the night." Maybe she hadn't heard anything after all…she had taken numerous shots before Booth arrived.
"Okay." He said, draping both his cape and arm around her. They walked back to the house and entered through the back door and made their way back to the festivities.
"You know Bones, I'm not so sure you get the whole concept of Halloween and dressing up." Booth said after taking a drink of his beer.
She moved closer to Booth, "What do you mean? I'm wearing a costume…is something wrong with it?" she asked, confused at his remark.
"You're a sexy doctor." He said leaning toward her ear. The music was starting to pick up and it was becoming difficult to hear.
Brennan looked down at her costume, wondering if she was missing something. "It's not a good costume?"
Booth shook his head, "No it's great," he said taking a long look, "it's great, but Bones…you're always a sexy doctor."
Brennan grinned when she caught his meaning, "Booth!" she slapped his arm playfully.
"What! You are." He said waggling his eyebrows.
She laughed at his playful manner, "So you say, but I definitely don't dress like this," she gestured, "everyday."
Booth bit his bottom lip and leaned close to her ear, "I sure wouldn't mind if you dressed like this everyday." His breath made her shiver slightly.
Brennan looked up at him smiled, "Booth, are you flirting with me?"
He cocked his head to the side, "If I say yes, can we leave and pick up where were left off last night?"
"Booth, you just got here." She laughed.
"Okay, so we'll stay a little longer and mingle." He gently brushed a lock of hair from her eyes, "Then maybe we can talk, about us?"
Brennan nodded, "I think that can be arranged."
Grinning he replied, "Yeah?" He leaned toward her and pressed a gentle kiss to her lips, then nibbled at them playfully.
A loud squeal made them break apart. Even with the loud music, Angela had somehow captured their attention. Booth looked at Brennan with a guilty expression, "Sorry." He mouthed.
She smirked and waved his apology off, "She already knows."
"I think Captain Hook wants us." Booth said, watching Hodgins and he waved at the two of them with his hooked hand.
Booth grabbed her hand and led her through the crowd to the table Hodgins and Angela sat at.
"Hey sweetie!" Angela said beaming at her and Booth. "Looks like Booth found you."
"Where'd you disappear to anyway?" Hodgins asked after he sipped his drink, "You completely missed my sword fight."
Booth spoke up, "I found her in the garden."
Hodgins' eyes widened, "The garden?"
Brennan noticed his expression, "Yes. I'm sorry, was that a restricted area or something. I didn't touch anything…"
He shook his head, "No, it's just." He looked around and leaned in, "it's supposed to be haunted."
Booth laughed, "What! Hodgins you're so full out it."
Jack shook his head, "No, seriously man. After my folks bought this place we started hearing stories about how the chick that lived here a long time ago still haunts the garden."
Angela looked doubtful, "I think you've had too much to drink."
Hodgins shook his head emphatically, "Seriously! This woman supposedly lived here with her no-good husband back in the 20's. Anyways, she began having an affair with the gardener and made plans to run off with him."
Booth noticed Brennan fidgeting in her seat, she seemed almost…nervous? He discreetly took her hand under the table, rubbing his thumb in circles to soothe her.
Angela leaned forward, "So what happened?"
"The story says the husband found out and had the guy murdered the day she was supposed to meet him. The maids said she sat out in the garden all night waiting for him, but he never showed. She ends up going out there every night, hoping he'd show up. I think she died a few years after that…an accident or something. Point is, people say they've seen her wandering the garden at night."
Booth looked suspicious, "I don't know…sounds like a camp fire story to me. I mean come on, Hodgins—a haunted mansion?"
Angela giggled, "It does sound a little hokey."
Hodgins held up his hands in surrender, "I'm just saying that's what I've heard. I sure as hell don't go out there. Don't tell anyone though…I don't want a tour bus filled with ghost hunting nuts showing up at my house."
Booth chuckled, "What do you think, Bones?"
Brennan sat deep in thought. Could that have been the voice she heard? But then again, she didn't believe in ghosts. There's no such thing…is there?