Disclaimer: Don't own Bones, yada yada yada…
A/N: This is for the Jan. CBPC challenge entry. Enjoy, and thanks for reading!
Laughter drifted through the lab, disturbing Dr. Temperance Brennan's concentration. She looked up from her computer screen, straining to see past her doorframe and into the open structure of the lab. Once again, Angela's laughter reached her ears. Curious at what her co-workers were up to she stood, shrugging off her lab coat and made her way toward the platform.
Brennan saw her friend, along with Hodgins and Zach, huddled together. Angela stood with her back to the two men, the pink button-up blouse she wore over a thin tank was pushed back, exposing her left shoulder.
Hodgins was studying the area intently as Brennan swiped her card and stepped up onto the platform. "What are you doing?" Brennan asked curiously.
Zach startled, "Dr. Brennan!"
Hodgins finally looked away from Angela, "Hey Dr. B, check out Angela's new tat."
A look of confusion crossed Brennan's face, "Her what?" She asked, stepping around the two men.
Angela glanced over her shoulder at her friend, shrugging it flirtatiously. "My ink, sweetie."
Her eyes rested on the smooth skin exposed. Brennan marveled at the beautiful and intricate butterfly design that was permanently etched into her friends shoulder
"You like it, Bren?" Angela cranned her neck as she strained to see it.
"It's beautiful." Her eyes followed the blue and green ink design. "Did you design it yourself?"
Angela nodded, her reply trailed off as she saw someone entering the lab. "Booth's here."
The butterfly was temporarily forgotten as Brennan watched Special Agent Seeley Booth walking toward them, "Hey."
Booth lifted his chin as quick greeting and strolled up to the platform. "Bones, I knew Hodgins and IQ boy here liked to oogle Angela, but you too? That's kind of hot."
Brennan rolled her eyes, "We're looking at Angela's new ink."
Booth raised his brow at her choice of words, but didn't comment. Angela turned, flashing Booth a look at her shoulder.
"A tattoo…nice." He complimented, "Yours?"
"Yep, all mine. I was just about to tell Bren that I could design one for her if she wanted." Angela said with a smile to her friend.
Booth scoffed, "Oh, right."
Brennan glared, "What's that supposed to mean?"
"I think what Agent Booth is attempting to say that you're not the type of person who gets a tattoo." Zach said, gulping slightly at the scowl Booth was directing at him.
Hodgins clapped his hand on Zach's shoulder. "Smooth, man…real smooth."
Booth braced himself for the lecture that surely would ensue, but was surprised when his partner opened her mouth to speak. "There's nothing wrong with having a tattoo."
"What?" Booth voiced incredulously.
"I said, there's nothing wrong with…"
"I heard what you said, Bones. I was just surprised at your answer—you know after hearing your views on cosmetic surgery and how it's barbaric."
Brennan shook her head, "Tattoos and cosmetic surgery are completely different, Booth."
The facts tumbled out automatically, "Cosmetic surgery is used to alter the human structure by radically changing bone or soft tissue. Tattoos have been used for hundreds of years as rites of passage, marks of status, or religious purposes. They serve as an enhancement or form of artistic expression, but they don't change anything."
"She's right," Zach nodded, "Tattooing is only a dermal pigmentation, therefore you don't actually alter anything."
Angela fixed her shirt, much to Hodgins' dismay. "Mines definitely a form of artistic expression then." She nodded in Booth's direction, "What about you?"
"What about me?" he asked.
"You've got a couple, do they mean anything?"
Brennan looked at her partner expectantly, "Got one when I was a Ranger". He shifted uncomfortably. "The other was sort of spur of the moment."
"I got one when I was on a dig in South America."
Hodgins perked up, "Dr. Brennan, you have a tattoo? Sweet."
Brennan nodded, as Angela asked, "Really?"
"No way." Booth waved his hand in dismissal.
She cocked an eyebrow, "Are you implying that I'm lying?"
"Well…no, but," he stammered, "Seriously? You've got one?"
"Yes, what's so hard to believe about that?" She asked to no one in particular.
"Can we see it?" Angela asked.
Brennan thought for a moment. "I don't it would be appropriate." A blush tinged her cheeks.
"How would the content of the tattoo be inappropriate Dr. Brennan?"
Hodgins swatted Zach on the head, "Not the content you moron—it's the location."
Booth grinned at the thought. A mysterious tattoo located somewhere on Bones…somewhere he had obviously not seen. Unconsciously his eyes swept her form, wondering at the most likely spot. Hmm…
Brennan noticed him staring. "Why are you looking at me like that?"
Angela patted her shoulder, "Don't worry sweetie, I'll explain it to you. Come on, let's get lunch and you can tell me about your ink. You will show your best friend, right?"
"Actually that's what I came over for." Booth said, elaborating when he saw Angela's impish smile. "Lunch, I mean."
Angela shrugged. "The more the merrier."
He flashed a smile, "Great."
Brennan held up her finger at him, "Just so you know…I'm not telling you."
Zach and Hodgins declined the lunch invitation, foregoing the chance of seeing the potential interrogation for an experiment concocted by Hodgins—one that Zach was fairly certain would fail.
The two women exited the platform, stopping at Brennan's office to retrieve her purse. Booth watched as Brennan leaned close to Angela and told her something quietly. Angela's eyes lit up and she giggled, "That's awesome." He heard her say.
Damn Angela and her tattoo. Damn Brennan for mentioning hers. He was sure this little tidbit about his partner would creep into his thoughts and slowly drive him insane. Booth wondered if he could trick her into telling him…or better yet show him.
"Hey Bones, wait up!" he called as he scrambled to catch up to the pair as they exited the lab.
This should be an interesting lunch.
Where is Brennan's tattoo and what is it? My lips are sealed!
Okay, it wasn't that big of a secret, but it was fun to write.