"I'm trying to get it. I'm honestly trying. But if you're so adamant, why did you tell me?" She was the most beautiful woman he'd seen. Despite the fact that she continued telling him what he didn't want to hear, he still wanted to hear her voice because it was coming from her mouth. And he loved her mouth.

"You had a right to know."

"So you just thought you'd tell me and that was the end of it?"

"Of course not." He knew she had. She was a bad liar and avoided his eyes every time she wasn't being truthful. This time it was because she was making a pretence of having trouble opening the door. He opened his and got out.

"What are you doing?" She was finally out and he grabbed her hand, walking her towards the building.

"You tell me something like that and then expect me to drop you off at work as if nothing happened?" Her eyes were wide but her steps didn't falter. Her eyes looked almost green today. He'd noticed that when it was overcast the blue in her eyes began to fade as if it, too, was tired of the endless rain and just wished for sunlight. The weather was fine today, though.

"I suppose you're feeling upset. I probably shouldn't have told you. I think you've been hinting that you would rather not know. But I'm not so good at picking up on hints." Her truthfulness about her own shortcomings always amazed him. He'd never met a woman who could so completely present herself to the world as a problematic equation. But she wasn't like any other woman he'd been with.

"I think I'm more upset that you've made your mind up without me. I'm half of this, all the way." He reluctantly dropped her hand to let her search for her ID card and swipe it to let them into the workstation. She sighed and he wrapped an arm around her waist. Even now, in the middle of this, he craved her closeness.

"You thought I'd cut and run."

"I don't know what that means." They headed for her office and she dropped her bag on the floor, letting his arm remain around her. He found it surreal that, despite the nature of their conversation, he still wanted to be closer to her. Even more surprising was that she was letting him.

"You thought I'd just leave, didn't you? Then you could do exactly what you wanted."

"I didn't want you to leave." Her arms wrapped around him, the embrace suddenly fierce. Even after the few weeks they'd been together he was still surprised at how quietly passionate she could be. The first time they'd slept together he'd been amazed at the wildcat prepared to unfurl from her buttoned down personality.

"Then what do you want? Us to stop acknowledging the elephant in the room?"

"I don't know-."

"It means stop talking about it, thinking about it. Step around the problem and try to pretend things are the same as they always were."

"I just wanted it to be easier than this." He pulled back to look at her face. Her hair was out this morning. She'd forgotten to put lipgloss on and he felt the sudden urge to kiss her bare lips. She let him dart his tongue across his teeth before she pulled away. He dropped his arm to her hand and let their fingers link. She drove him crazy; intellectually, physically. But he didn't know whether she was driving him away with this.

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Sully was in her office, again. Booth had noticed it happening more and more. Where she'd once so fiercely segregated her private life and her working life, cracks were beginning to appear between, leakages taking place. Blissfully, she'd stopped unwittingly torturing him with conversation about her and Sully's sex life. In fact, she was being remarkably restrained for someone who thought a discussion about another man's hips and thighs was the kind of thing to bring up at breakfast. She hadn't been talking much at all. He'd noticed it for the past week but hadn't gotten around to asking Angela if she knew what was wrong. He'd imagined things might not be going so well with Sully but the lingering kiss she was sharing with Sully dissuaded Booth of the idea that they might be cooling things off. Straightening his tie and waiting a moment until they finally broke apart, Booth walked into Brennan's office. The linked hands she and Sully had shared were reluctantly dropped.

"Hey, Booth." Sully's greeting was quiet, his tone subdued. Booth nodded towards him.

"We have to talk tonight." Sully's hand moved slowly down Brennan's cheekbone and Booth looked away, not wanting to play third wheel to their moment.

"I know." He left at Brennan's words and she sank into her chair, sighing.

"Trouble in paradise?" Booth asked. She shrugged, looked at the emptiness of her desk.

"It's… Something," she shook her head, changed her mind, "nothing. Do we have a case?" Her tone broached no argument over her change of subject and he decided to go along with it. She'd tell him eventually; a long car ride when there was nothing to talk about or a late night at Wong Fu's. He just had to wait her out.

"Yeah. We do."

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She'd looked out the window the entire car ride to the victim's parents' house without saying much at all. He decided that she was working up to tell him but after an unsuccessful interview the car ride back to the lab was just as quiet.

"Something on your mind, Bones?" He broached the subject without looking over to her but in his peripheral vision he saw her shift, lift a hand from where it was resting on her stomach to brush back some hair that had fallen into her eyes.

"Yes. How can someone's parents just… I mean their daughter is dead and they sat there drinking tea and looking blank. What happened to emotion? Aren't you meant to feel something when your child is found dead?" He waited for her to say more but she fell quiet again and returned to perusing the darkening scenery. He'd expected something anthropological to follow, some kind of rationalisation. Not another bout of silence.

"Anything else on your mind?" She straightened up as the Jeffersonian came into view, apparently ignoring his question. This was something new. Even if he asked a question she didn't like, she'd always answer.

"Booth, this…" Finally she met his eyes as he pulled the car to a stop. It was the first time in an entire car trip that she hadn't made him look at her while she spoke, despite the fact that he was driving and technically should have all his attention on the road. He saw the unshed tears and wondered if it was all because of the ambivalence of the dead girl's parents or whether there was more to it.

"This is something you can't help me with." Her words told him there was more, but that she wasn't going to give it up easily.

"I could try. I mean we're partners, right?" She slung her bag over her shoulder and looked at her watch.

"I have to meet Sully. There wasn't anything else you needed me to get done tonight was there?" He shook his head and she stopped on the sidewalk near a streetlight, turned to face him. Her face was half in darkness but her hair was lit by the glow coming from above.

"Some things you can't fix." Her smile was sedately sad, small enough so that he nearly missed it excepting that it was her face he saw more than anyone else's and he knew every nuance of it by now. Though he saw the smile that was meant to convince him to drop the matter, he also saw her eyes, lit by the half light enough so that the tears showed.

"Temperance, I want to help…" He took a step closer to her and she let their closeness linger for an instant before she stepped away from him.

"I'll see you tomorrow." The she was walking past the streetlight and away.

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When she woke up with his hand over her stomach she'd feel a flash of guilt. Half his DNA. Genes that had successfully fused. Proof that she could do it if she wanted to. If she wanted to. And therein was the problem.

A/N: Hope you liked. I love the Sully/Bren dynamic (not least of all because it brings out the green eyed monster in Booth). Please review!