AUTHOR'S NOTE: So if you've already read this then please note that this is NOT NEW. It is a cleaned-up version so that I can continue more comfortably with the rest of the story. Typos have--hopefully--been fixed and a couple details here and there. But if you've read it and have no desire to reread it then sorry about the wait on the next chapter. Just ask Ava: I've been having a hell of a time with getting it out. But if you're new then feel free to read on.

Rating: M for sexual material and light language
Spoilers: None as of yet but maybe later there are some for season two.
Time Frame (in comparison to where we are in the show as of now): End of season two, maybe? They've been partners for two years.
Disclaimer: Clones on a loan, baby. But as soon as they're on E-Bay I'm buying.
Shout-outs: To all of you who have been supporting me! And if you are waiting on the next chapter for The Greatest Gift: I'm working on it, okay? The characters are on break, seeing as how they aren't so sure if they should consummate yet.
Summary: You say that this was meant to help us. You said that it was what was GOOD for us. But we've both gone through hell. And, I don't know about you but I've missed any hint of a bright side of this dammed situation. So just explain to me what parts I've missed.

I Missed the Bright Side:

The soft, moving lights of the city outside slid across the walls of the room as he stared at the ceiling, trying to sort out the tumultuous battle of emotions inside of him. He was in a place that he'd never thought he'd be. He'd dreamed about it quite often but never in his wildest moments did he think that he would ever really get this far. But here he was in his bedroom with someone else. Someone that he'd only dared dream about for the past two years.

Turning his head on the pillow to look at her, his fealt his breath hitch at what he saw. She was lying peacefully against him, her head tucked on his breastbone and her arm flung possessively over his middle. Her leg, bare and exposed where the sheet had slipped away, was wrapped around his own as well and overall the position made him feel as if he were whole. Careful not to wake her, he moved his arm that wasn't trapped under her body to tuck a stray lock of hair away from her face and behind her ear. She was so magnificently beautiful while she was asleep, he decided. There was something so surreal about seeing her allowing the walls around her heart fall away but last night she had done it so completely that they were still down, leaving him to be able to marvel at his luck.

But it was hard to fully enjoy the moment. The battle raged on as he looked away, blinking away the tear that threatened to escape. Usually, he wasn't afraid to cry. His philosophy was that it helped one recover sooner. But if he gave in and cried now then his resolve would more than likely be washed away by the tears. He had to do this. He had promised not only himself but others as well.

One half of him rebelled against the other part, saying to forget the imminent consequences and to stay here where he belonged and where he was safe. But the other part—the one that was logical—insisted that the cost would be too great if he stayed. Not only could he not afford to throw himself into this relationship as completely as he wanted to, but the plans had already been made and, arrogant man that he had been, he was already immersed in a world that he could not avoid. To stay away from what had to be done might cost lives. But to go and leave this place now would also mean that he would be leaving his heart behind.

The battle ceased for a moment as the woman next to him shifted and murmured his name. Turning to look at her, he smiled sadly. Her hand was moving against his skin and her brow was creased as she frowned at something that he couldn't see.

"Booth," she whimpered as she squirmed against him. She was breathing heavily and she shook her head in desperation. His throat tightened at the sound of his name slipping from her lips and gently he laid his hand on her shoulder, turning on the bed to pull her against his chest.

"Shh," he soothed, burying his face into her hair as he rubbed her back. "I'm here, Bones. I'm here."

She whimpered again and pressed her face deeper against his skin. He could feel her eyes open and she took a shuddering breath. Slowly, her breath steadied and she turned her face so that her cheek was resting on his chest. After a few moments of silence, Booth pulled away to look down at her. Pressing his lips against her sweaty forehead, he moved his hand to move over her hair.

"You okay?" he asked tenderly. She nodded slowly took a deep breath.

"I was just having a bad dream," she whispered as her fingers pressed into his flesh.

Knowing from her tone of voice that she wasn't going to expound on that statement, he moved his lips down to meet hers in a brief kiss. "I'm here now, Temperance. You don't need to worry."

She nodded again and smiled weakly. Moving her head forward, she pressed her lips against his again. After a few chaste kisses, she opened her mouth to him and their kisses became longer, more passionate as both felt their bodies waking up.

"You know what, Seeley?" she whispered softly when his lips traveled from her mouth to her neck. "I like waking up next to you."

He chuckled in amusement. "I like it too, Temperance." He neglected to mention that he hadn't slept at all while she had been in his arms. It didn't seem pertinent. Teasingly, he nipped at the delicate skin where her jaw, neck and ear met where he had recently discovered she was most sensitive. She hissed a curse as she arched her body against his and pressed her breasts against him.

"God," she murmured as his fingers trailed their way down her back to her butt. Pressing her up against his already hardened self, he nipped again before flipping their bodies so that he was on top. Moving his mouth back down her neck and to the swell of her breasts, he moved his hands to the tender joining of her thighs. Once again, she hissed her approval and dug her nails into his biceps. He whispered an incoherent response before taking her into his mouth and stroking her bundle of nerves at the same time. She cried his name, tipping her head back and lifted her body slightly from the bed to press her body closer to him.

He moved his lips from her breasts and smothered her protests with a fiery kiss on the mouth. Moving his hand from between her legs, he nudged her inner-thighs apart and gently pressed the tip of himself against her teasingly. When she bit his lip and tugged urgently, he plunged into her, burying himself in her wet walls. Together they laid perfectly still, their breaths coming out in unison as they tried to get used to the feeling of heat coursing through them. Then, as one, they began to move. Slowly at first, but then faster and harder they rode together, no sounds in the room but little gasps and moans of pleasure and the traffic outside. They reach that breaking point together, their sweaty bodies cresting and traversing the wave as one, releasing themselves into one another at the same moment.

It felt perfect, he realized with a sudden and painful jolt. It felt like coming home. And as they laid clutching each other and trying to remember how to breathe, he closed his eyes and willed himself to die. He hated himself at that moment. He hated himself more than he ever had in his lifetime—more than when Rebecca turned him down and made him believe he wasn't an adequate father and more than any of the times when he was a sniper during the war and shot men who had a wife and children waiting at home for him. He was going to rip not only his own heart out but hers as well. He was going to rip it out with his bare hands and he was going to be paid not to give a damn.

Closing his eyes, he ran his fingers up her sweaty back and into her hair. "I love you, Temperance," he whispered tightly. "I have loved you for years."

She nodded and smiled. "I know, Seeley. I love you too." She let out a small burst of laughter as her lips peppered kisses over his skin. "We're a pair, aren't we? Too afraid for years to admit our feelings and then when we finally do we go the whole fifteen yards."

"Nine yards, Bones," Booth chuckled as she fumbled on the phrase. "And yes." Pressing a kiss on her temple, he closed his eyes and heaved a deep sigh. "But I think that it was well worth the wait, don't you?"

She nodded quietly and slid from her position beneath him. Pulling the blanket up from where it had fallen to the floor, she tucked it around them and curled up next to him. "I like being able to wake up in your arms, Booth," she repeated softly as she nestled her head under his chin. "I dreamt that you'd disappeared and I couldn't find you. I searched and searched but, when I did find you, you were so...different. I can't explain it but it scared me." She shook almost imperceptibly and her arm snaked out in search of his hand. Finding it, she twined her fingers with his and rested her hand against his, palm to palm. Sighing complacently, she closed her eyes. "I'm sorry for waiting so long, Seeley."

Booth shook his head and smiled. "It's okay, Bones. I'm here. I've got you." He pressed his lips against her head gently and stroked her back with his free hand. "I've got you, Bones," he repeated again and again until her breath came out evenly. Finally, he felt the fingers of sleep taking hold of him. Closing his eyes, he swallowed hard. "And I'm sorry, Bones...Temperance. God, I am so sorry."


It was late. She had waited too long. She had delayed doing what she had to do so that she could remain just a few minutes longer in his arms and now she had to hurry. Slipping carefully from his arms, she reached for her discarded underwear that lay in a pile next to the bed. Then she went in search for her jeans which she found in the hallway next to the wall. Closing her eyes as she stuffed her legs into them, she blocked out the memory of his lips on hers as he pressed her urgently against that wall as they tried feebly to reach the bedroom in time. With that done, she scanned his living room for the last article of clothing—her shirt—and found it lying underneath his next to the couch where everything had begun.

When she was sufficiently clothed, she looked around the room once more before grabbing her coat from the closet and pulling the letter from the pocket. Quietly, she kissed it and placed it on the kitchen table. Then she turned her back on the room, trying harder to block out the pounding in her chest and the way that her throat swelled painfully in protest to what needed to be done. She had to do this. She didn't really have a choice in the matter when holding the two situations up to each other. She needed to forsake her old life and relationships in order to survive. And if breaking his heart was the only way...then so-be-it.

Squaring her shoulders, she walked up to the door and slid her feet inside her sandles before opening the door and slipping out of the apartment without looking behind her. Only when she was downstairs in her car did she look back up at the window that she knew to be his bedroom window. He would be waking up soon, she realized. And he would find her letter. He would heal, eventually. The human memory was like a sieve. Time healed all wounds eventually. She could attest to that to a degree. And, although part of her argued that she was wrong, she knew that they would both be able to recover from this betrayal.

So, looking away from the window and turning the key in the ignition, she drove away in the direction of the airport. And twenty minutes later, when his alarm clock rang out, Booth opened his eyes to find his apartment empty except for himself. When his eyes settled on the letter he felt the hole in his chest expand as he sank to the floor and finally let himself cry.

So I am sorry about how long it is taking me to write some of this stuff. Especially the Greatest Gift and this one. Don't hate me. cowers in corner as people throw the dreaded balls of cheese I hate cheese... Anyway, I want to extend a shout-out and a big THANK YOU to Ava. Words cannot adequately describe how much you have helped me. Even if I've only made a littel bit of progress, you made it happen. I'll spew to you anytime. :D

Hugs and loves to all of you and your patience!