Title: All I Know
Rating: PG for now, possibly M later in the story.
Summary: Brennan and Booth baby-sit their goddaughter for two weeks while Angela and Hodgins honeymoon in the Caribbean. After four long years apart, will they finally get the chance to start over? AU, futurefic, BB with some HA.
Author's Note: My newest creation, born of a free summer that stretches before me! I've never tried something like this before, but hopefully you will enjoy it. I have the next part mostly completed, but after that I have no idea where this is going. Please take a moment to review, give me some feedback. Enjoy!
"I took the job," were the first words that Brennan said to him when he opened the door.
"Bones, what?" Booth replied groggily, running a hand over his mussed hair.
"I know it's midnight and everything, but I just thought you'd like to be the first to know," she shrugged and tucked her hands into her pockets.
Booth sighed and stepped aside so Brennan could enter the apartment. "Come in," he said. She hovered awkwardly in the foyer until he gently grasped her elbow and steered her to the couch. Booth could see the wheels turning in her head. "Hey," Booth tipped her chin up so he could see her eyes. "I thought you wanted this job, Bones. What's the problem, did something happen?" Brennan shook her head adamantly, sending her auburn hair flying. He resisted the urge to brush a stray curl back behind her ear.
"No, nothing happened," she dropped her gaze and Booth removed his hand from her face. "It's great, it's Stanford… it's great. I'll be teaching, of course, but I get a stipend for my anthropology research. It's been so long since I've been out there in the field. I miss it," she smiled wistfully. Booth tried to suppress the burning jealousy that simmered beneath his skin. Wasn't working with the FBI exciting enough for her?
"Then what's wrong?" he questioned, pushing his feelings to the side.
"I've never not wanted to leave somewhere so much in my life," she paused and Booth's heart leapt in his chest. "For the first time, I have people. Living, breathing people who I'd like to think actually care whether I stay or go or what happens to me. It's kind of nice…"
"Yeah…" Booth cleared his throat and a silence fell over the pair. "You know, Bones, I'll miss you," he said after a moment. Brennan looked up at him and smiled that half-smile, the one Booth liked to think she reserved just for him, eyes darkened to a midnight blue.
"I know," she replied simply. Booth longed for her to say that she'd miss him too.
"So, have you started packing yet?" he questioned to break the silence, lest he do something irrational to convince her to stay.
"Of course not, Booth," Brennan narrowed her eyes. "I just decided to accept the offer tonight, and then I came straight here," she gestured to their surroundings.
"To tell me…" Booth felt like a total idiot.
"To tell you," she nodded.
"When do you have to be out there?"
"My plane leaves at one in the afternoon, the fourteenth," Brennan didn't look at him. Booth quickly did the math; two weeks exactly until his world fell apart at the seams.
"Great, I'll clear my schedule," Booth stood from the couch and nodded briskly.
"Why would you do that?"
"You'll need a ride to the airport, Bones," he chastised.
"Oh, okay…" Booth didn't fail to notice that she accepted his gesture without protest. Brennan glanced at the clock on the wall and rose to stand beside Booth at the end of the couch.
"It's late, I should go," she said.
"You don't have to," Booth replied. Stay.
"Yes, I do." Booth knew what would happen if she didn't leave his apartment. Though he ardently wanted to lose himself in her, he wanted her to be happy even more. He had given her as much of himself as she was willing to take. Now it was time for her to move on; that she moved on without him was just a fact of life.
"Alright, I'll see you tomorrow, Bones."
"Tomorrow?" she asked, confused.
"Oh, we have a case, did I forget to mention that?" he smiled.
"Yes, you did forget," she scolded him.
"It'll probably be our last together, huh?" Booth didn't mean to bring the solemn mood back. Brennan nodded and he looked at the floor as she shuffled past him, heading towards the door to make her exit, from his apartment and from his life.
"Booth?" she called back over her shoulder.
"For tolerating me…" Brennan turned away from the door to face him, "for being a pretty good partner, most of the time." Booth chuckled so that he wouldn't start to cry.
"No problem," he replied. "Thanks for being my best friend, Bones. You'll visit, right?" Brennan's eyes were shiny with tears as she took three long strides to reach his side.
"I promise, Booth," Brennan said gravely. "I'll visit you. I promise." He was surprised when she stepped forward and slipped her arms around his shoulders to pull him into a hug.
"I'll be there," Booth smiled. "Wherever there's a cop beatin' up a guy, I'll be there," he quoted the movie that had been playing in the hospital after their first disastrous case.
"Why would a cop beat someone up?" Brennan loosened her hold on him to look at his face, her brow creased with confusion.
"Never mind, Bones, never mind," Booth impulsively leaned in and pressed a kiss to her forehead, lips lingering against her skin for a moment too long.
"I parked in front of a fire hydrant," Brennan mumbled against his neck, her warm breath very nearly tempting Booth to rethink his earlier decision of letting her leave.
"Alright," they reluctantly separated. "Go, get some sleep."
"Bye," Brennan whispered, and then she was gone.