Author's note: November entry for Cullen's Bullpen Challenge. This is just a quick scene that's been floating about in my mind. Hope you enjoy!


Cold air blew the leaves in a whirlwind around her. The scenery passed quickly, but at her speed she didn't chance a moment to take notice of the things around her. She only had one thought in her mind. Run!

Temperance Brennan gasped for air as she ran. There was a dull throb in her calves as her feet pounded the pavement roughly. She desperately tried to keep her balance as she wobbled on her heeled boots. In the back of her mind she wished she had chosen different shoes today.

How had it come to this, she wondered. One minute she had been having a friendly conversation, the next she was running for all she was worth. Her heel came down on a rock, making her stumble.

Come on…keep going!

Just a few dozen yards more and she'd be there. She didn't dare turn behind her in fear of falling or even worse—getting caught. Her ears were attuned to the labored breathing of the man behind her. Like she, he struggled for each breath as the pair ran even faster.

In….out...in...out. Her mind repeated the breathing exercises she learned so long ago.

Still, nothing quelled her starving lungs. The sound of gravel crunching alerted her to the fact her pursuer was catching up. She pushed herself with all she had to propel her body forward.

Ignoring the cramp in her leg she jutted to the left, surprising him. He instinctively followed, still on her heels. She heard him groan and it allowed her a small, satisfied smile. Maybe she would make it after all.

She spared a quick glance over her shoulder and cursed when she noticed him still there. He ran, awkwardly holding his thigh. Her eyes made contact with his for a brief moment. Brennan turned her head sharply, refocusing her attention to her goal. She had seen the sheer determination in his gaze. She had to make it.

The wind whipped a few strands of hair over her eyes. Brennan swatted at them impatiently. She would not let the distraction cripple her. One foot in front of the other, she told herself. Her target was almost in sight. A few more feet and she'd make it to safety.

Suddenly she felt fingers brush at the hem of her jacket. Picking up speed she launched herself at the black SUV. Her hand smacked against the door with a loud thunk. Brennan let out an unbelieving laugh. She turned to the man behind her and grinned.

"I won." She panted.

Seeley Booth leaned against the vehicle. He had reached the SUV only moments after her. "I let…you win, Bones." His breath coming out in short puffs.

Brennan slapped his arm, her chest still heaving. "Is that…why you're…out of breath?"

He rolled his head to face her. "Just keeping up appearances." He shifted his weight onto his left leg, hoping that she didn't notice. He had pulled a muscle about 20 yards back.

She eyed him for a moment before speaking. "You okay?"

Booth nodded, "Yep, fine."

Brennan rolled her eyes at his obvious alpha male display. "Just give me the keys, Booth. I won."

Seeley frowned, "I thought women weren't supposed to run in those things." He motioned to her boots.

"Stop changing the subject and hand over those keys."

"Come on, Bones…it was just a stupid bet."

Temperance smiled, "Yes, a bet that I won."

Booth rolled his eyes at her stubbornness, "Fine." He said throwing the keys at her.

Brennan deftly caught them with one hand. "That's better."

She began to push herself from the vehicle, but was blocked by Booth's towering form. He had pinned his arms on either side of her body and was smirking at her. Gulp.

"Now Bones, you didn't think I was going to let you get away that easily did you?" his voice a harsh whisper against her ear.

Her lips parted as she drew in a ragged breath. Brennan unconsciously licked her lips before saying, "You're trying to cheat."

Booth shook his head slowly. "Not cheating—you can still drive, but when we get to my place I will definitely catch you." His lips inched agonizingly slow towards hers.

Brennan leaned in and captured his lips. She caught his bottom lips between her teeth and nibbled lightly before pulling back.

The absence of her lips was felt immediately. Booth groaned, opening his eyes to see her smirking at him.

"You sure about that?" she asked before ducking under his arms and hopping into the SUV.

Booth jogged to the passenger side and let himself in, "You are SOOOO gonna regret that, Bones."

Brennan waggled her eyebrows, "Promises, promises Booth."

Seeley grinned at the sultry she was giving him. Maybe I should let her win more often.


:Sigh: If only Booth was chasing me...well I probably wouldn't even move, I'd definitely be an easy catch. :grin: