A/N: Hey guys! I'm so sorry I didn't update sooner. My classes are very demanding, so keeping my marks up for med school is a bit of a fulltime job! Anyway, to partially compensate I have a massive chapter for you! I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed writing it!
I would love to know what you think and if you have anything particular in mind for the rest of this story. I have a few twists in mind, and I'm anxious to write more chapters shortly!
Disclaimer: I don't own Bones, just this storyline!
Previously: Cole surprises Brennan by 'dropping in' to her apartment. There, he comes face to face with Booth and Angela. Booth is not very pleased by Cole's presence and Booth and Brennan argue about the situation. The plot thickens...
"Are you guys coming out, or should we give you some privacy?" Angela called from the kitchen; her voice slicing through the nearly tangible energy between Brennan and Booth. Booth rolled his eyes and smirked slightly. "We're coming, Ange."Brennan lifted her head and lightly kissed Booth on the cheek. As usual, Booth had little time to react to the confusing sign of affection and instead numbly followed Brennan toward the bedroom door. "You should probably leave your gun on the nightstand." "Good idea, Bones. Good idea." Booth muttered as he followed her out of her bedroom. This was going to be an interesting evening.
Booth and Brennan emerged from the bedroom and entered the kitchen where Angela and Cole stood awkwardly by the counter. Booth stuck his hands in his pockets and eyed Cole intently, searching for any sign of malice on his perfectly structured face.
"So what brings you to DC, Myers?" Booth asked, ignoring the warning stare that Brennan was giving him.
"I'm working on a movie being shot downtown. It's called 'Polygraph'... it's the sequel to –"
"Truth Be Told!" Angela said, nodding her head. "Bren, I took you to see that last year. Don't you remember?"
Brennan tilted her head questioningly, before an expression of recognition dawned on her face. "I seem to recall the film contained a variety of misrepresentations pertaining to the legal system, but overall it was rather entertaining. Your portrayal of the misunderstood defendant was rather moving."
Cole was evidently happy with Brennan's approval, as a smile broke out on his face. "Thanks" he said quietly, staring at her through his steely blue eyes. Angela observed the look on Booth's face as Cole continued to stare at Brennan. Her lips quirked into a faint smile, and she interrupted the awkward silence.
"Well, as much as I would love to witness this testosterone-fuelled tennis match, I gotta meet Jack in fifteen minutes." Angela said as she slipped into her coat and slowly began fastening the large red buttons.
Without taking his eyes off of Cole, Booth was able to clear off the faint lines of confusion that he instinctively knew painted his partner's features. "Not really tennis, Bones..." he explained quietly.
Brennan nodded her head to Booth as Angela began to head towards the door. "It was interesting meeting you, Cole. Try to avoid climbing up people's fire escapes though, okay? Brennan is not the only one who has a gun nearby." She said, throwing a teasing glance at Booth who smiled at her in return.
"Bye Ange" Brennan said with a smile as the door clicked shut. "Pizza?" Brennan asked, glancing at the long white box on the table. She motioned for both men to sit down as she placed three plates on the table.
Cole chewed his bite thoughtfully and observed the cryptic body language going on between Brennan and Booth. "So how is work at the Jeffersonian?" he asked.
Brennan narrowed her eyes slightly. "I never mentioned I work at the Jeffersonian."
"Right. Well, I Googled you. I guess I figured since my life is like an open-book to the public, I was at a disadvantage. You know lots about me, but I never got to know a lot about you."
"Actually, I know nothing about you. I find tabloids to be a waste of both time and resources. And since I did not recognize you in that bar it would follow that I have never paid any attention to you."
Booth bit back a bark of laughter, and simply tried to wipe a grin off his face. Trust Bones to bring a man's confidence down in two sentences or less.
Cole nodded slowly, "Of course". He was clearly embarrassed, but found her bluntness to endear her more to him. "Well then I suppose we're even." He said, flashing his perfect white teeth.
"Cole, why are you here?" Booth said, feigning a tone of niceness in his voice.
"I already told you, I wanted to come and see Temperance to clear things up. I feel bad about what happened, but there's really nothing I can do. Once these people get a story in their minds, there is no pushing them away."
"It would be better if you'd just stay away. I want to get back to work, Booth wants to get back to work, and the only way that will happen is for this situation to be cleared up."
"It's just a matter of time before something bigger and better comes along. Then this will be as forgotten as the Bennifer break-up."
Brennan nodded at his answer, and then made a mental note to figure out who Bennifer was, and why they broke down.
"Anyway, I should probably go." Cole said as he stood from the table. He had been struggling to ignore Booth's pointed gaze, but he awkwardly made eye contact with him for several seconds. "Good luck with everything, Temperance. I'm really sorry about what happened."
Brennan accepted his apology and watched as he turned to leave the apartment. Feeling a moment of boldness, Cole turned just as he was exiting. "The paparazzi may forget you, but I won't. If you – uh – ever want to give me a call sometime, you know how to reach me. You're a special person, Temperance." And with that, Cole exited the apartment and shut the door with a soft click.
"You're a special person, Temperance..." Booth said, mimicking Cole's earnest tone. Brennan turned to him and shot him a glare as she stood to clear the table.
"Hey, I behaved myself!" Booth said, putting up his hands defensively. Brennan couldn't help but smirk at his childlike jealousy.
"Don't be jealous, Booth." Brennan said, knowing the kind of reaction that statement would stir in her partner.
"I am not jealous." He said, shaking his head. "Him with his... teeth..." Booth said, trying to form his argument. Brennan chuckled at his inarticulacy.
"You have nothing to be jealous of, you know." She said cryptically, sitting down beside him again at the kitchen table. His eyes met hers and their gazes locked for several meaningful seconds. Neither of them would come right out to admit the undeniable change in their partnership, but both knew exactly what Brennan was hinting at.
"I know" he said surely. He tenderly but boldly extended his hand to tuck a strand of auburn hair behind her ear. He let his hand lay on the table and grinned at her somewhat mischievously. "You want to know what Bennifer means, don't you?"
Brennan's eyes widened slightly and then she nodded her head earnestly. "Yes, yes I do."
Booth stayed to keep Brennan company for the next few hours. Neither had anywhere to go or anyone to see, so they were very content to just sit around and do nothing. Booth was sprawled on the couch with his socked feet resting up on the coffee table, while Brennan was curled up in a recliner with her laptop.
Booth glanced up from the case file in front of him when he heard his partner sigh quietly. She was staring blankly at the computer screen and licked her lips absent-mindedly.
"Bones, you look so bored right now."
"I'm not bored."
"Yes you are, because I am too. You're the one who has been cooped up in this apartment for two days." He said, flopping the case file on the ground and sinking lower into the couch.
A few moments passed before Brennan finally clicked her laptop shut and looked up at Booth. "Yes, I am very bored." She agreed. She had no case work to do until tomorrow, and for some reason she was getting absolutely no where with her next chapter.
Booth nodded his head and then sat straight up on the couch. "Alright" he said, rubbing his hands together, "I've got a plan".
Brennan cocked her head dubiously, but couldn't help but smile at his contagious enthusiasm. "What are you thinking?"
"Booth, this is never going to work!" Brennan said emphatically as she studied her appearance in the mirror fifteen minutes later. Her hair was tucked up in a blue baseball cap that hid her face, and she wore black yoga pants and a baggy sweatshirt.
"Of course it will work. Besides, it's dark outside." He said, putting his hands on her shoulders and appraising her makeshift disguise in the mirror.
"Remember what happened last time I tried to sneak out?"
"Of course I do, but this time I'm going to be with you. Plus, no one's going to see you. We'll walk down the emergency ladder, jog to my car, and then we're home free!"
Booth had convinced Brennan to go out for a drive with him. Though he knew that there was a risk of her being hounded by photographers, he couldn't bear to see her trapped in her own home like this. She needed someone to break her out of this prison, and he was just the person to do it.
"This is kind of fun..." she said with a smirk.
"That's the spirit!" He said, grabbing his coat and zipping it up. Brennan grabbed her bag off of the couch and walked towards the window. She reached to unlatch the hook, but stopped when she felt his hand on her arm. "Let me."
Brennan opened her mouth to protest, but he cut her off. "I have to go first to make sure the coast is clear, deal?"
Booth and Brennan stepped out onto the metal staircase that ran up the side of her building. As they slowly walked down the metal stairs Brennan glanced up at the dark starry sky and inhaled deeply. It felt really, really good to be outside. Booth's voice brought her back to reality when they reached the ground.
"My car is on that block over there. Just walk normally and we should be alright." He whispered, and Brennan's nose was tickled by the sensation of his warm breath juxtaposed with the cool night air. She nodded and they began to walk down the dark street. As they got closer and closer to the SUV they started to pick up their pace. They both knew they weren't being followed, but there was a bit of a thrill in feeling like they were escaping from something. They hopped into the car quickly and Booth started the engine.
He looked over at Brennan, whose rosy cheeks still shone beneath her baseball cap. A few strands of hair had fallen down near her face and her eyes were shining at him. It was always a rare treat for him to witness Temperance Brennan's playful side, but when he did he savoured every moment. They both chuckled for no real reason as Booth sped off into the night.
After driving around downtown DC for nearly an hour, Brennan and Booth realized how incredibly hungry they were. Booth suggested that they go back to his place, and Brennan quickly agreed. She wasn't quite ready to go home to her empty apartment quite yet.
Booth unlocked his front door and tossed his keys on a hook by the coat rack. "Make yourself at home – I'll go get us something to drink."
Brennan nodded and walked into the living room as Booth headed for the kitchen. Brennan had been to Booth's place on countless occasions, and had always felt very comfortable there. She liked how simple and neat everything was, but yet it still felt like a real home. There were pictures framed up on the walls of Parker, and what she assumed to be Booth's family.
Booth returned with two opened beers and set them down on the coffee table. "And now, Bones, it's time for me to teach you how to channel surf." He said as he plopped down on the couch and motioned for her to sit next to him.
Booth flicked on the television with the remote and they found themselves staring at the local weather station. "Just yell out if something looks interesting." He explained. They flicked around a few stations until they reached one station that really caught Brennan's eye.
Mostly, because on the screen there was a picture of herself.
"What is this?" She demanded, grabbing the remote from Booth and turning the volume up louder.
Plastered on the screen was one of Brennan's promotional headshots for her new book. The screen then flashed to a busty blonde woman whose white teeth were nearly as false as her hair. She addressed the camera as if she were a schoolgirl telling a secret to her best friend, "That was the face of Dr. Temperance Brennan, Hollywood's favourite mystery woman. She has been romantically linked with Cole Myers, whose latest thriller is due in theatres this summer..."
The screen then flashed to shaky video footage of Booth leading Brennan out of the Jeffersonian just days before. His arms encircled her protectively and his right hand was hiding her face into his neck as they slowly shuffled toward the SUV. Members of the paparazzi were taking photos and lightening speed and some raised their cameras above their heads to get the perfect shot.
"As you can see Temperance may be more camera shy than her Hollywood sweetheart, but that didn't stop our online viewers from voting this our #1 Story of the Week. To cast your vote, visit www..."
Booth cast a nervous glance at Brennan, whose eyes studied the screen intently. He hadn't considered the consequences of watching television with Brennan considering her situation, and part of him was now regretting it.
"Bones, let's change the channel. I'm sure we can find something that will..."
"No!" Brennan said, shaking her head vehemently without moving her gaze from the screen.
"With a woman of Temperance's intellect, it's hard to believe her sense of fashion is so well developed. With her gorgeous body, she's teaching the world how conservatively cut pant suits, dark colours, and exotic necklaces can turn geeks chic! Here to tell us more is our resident fashion guru, Christy Taylor."
The screen flashed to picture of Brennan exiting the diner and digging for car keys in her purse. A new, yet equally irritating, voice flooded through the speakers. "Look how this dark A-line skirt lies gently at Tempe's modest hips. Paired with a scoop-neck brown knit sweater, this look brings a sense of glamour to the classic career-woman look."
"Now one thing I love about Tempe's style is her unique necklaces. Be sure to look for these in this year's fall collections. Note how this turquoise stone sets of the glimmer in her eyes. Choosing one accessory as a bold accent can give a flirty but sensual feel to any..."
"Flirty?" Brennan breathed quietly to no one in particular.
Booth rubbed a tired hand over his eyes. When he opened them, he saw Brennan staring at him with a strange and unreadable expression on her face. He gave her a sympathetic smile and reached over to gently remove the remote control from her tight grip. She relented and didn't protest when he switched the television off.
"Don't worry about it, Bones. We'll get this sorted out..."
"You're right. But it's so disturbing, don't you think? How can these people really devote their lives to such meaningless frivolity?"
"It might be meaningless, but if there's a market for it then people will do it."
"Flirty..." She said, shaking her head as she absently thumbed the necklace around her neck.
"Okay, new plan." Booth said as he got off the couch and walked over to a bookshelf full of DVDs. "I say we watch an equally meaningless movie we can make fun of starring Toothy himself."
Brennan looked at him curiously as he searched for the movie he had in mind. "Toothy?"
"Toothy, you know, Cole. He's always smiling about something..."
Brennan nodded her head thoughtfully. "Kind of like a clown. A very rich clown..." she supplied with a grin. Booth scowled at her over his shoulder and then pulled out the movie he was looking for.
"Prepare yourself for mediocrity at its finest, Bones." Booth said as he flipped off the lights and the opening credits appeared on the screen.
Faintly aware of a constant voice and incessant poking to his left side, Booth's eyes fluttered open. He looked up to see a very flustered Brennan running a hand through her hair. "We fell asleep... we must have fallen asleep in the movie!" She said, pulling him up into the sitting position.
Booth groaned and looked over at the clock, which confirmed his suspicion that they were both late for work. Unfortunately, that was the least of his worries.
"They're outside, Booth." Brennan said, beginning to pace as she dug through her purse for her cell phone.
"Who?" he asked as he trudged toward the window. He peered through the blinds to see five photographers on the sidewalk in front of Booth's driveway. "Oh hell no..." he muttered.
"We don't have a choice, we have to go out there." Brennan said. This was to be her first day back at work since her leave of absence, and there was no way she was going to miss it.
"How did they find us?" Booth asked, but both of them knew it was a rhetorical question.
"Just hurry up and change, I have spare clothes at the Jeffersonian." She said, hurrying him along.
Moments later Booth emerged from his room with a suit thrown haphazardly on his un-showered body. His hair was still slightly ruffled and his tie was unforgivably twisted. Brennan walked over to him and reached out to re-tie it.
"This doesn't look good..." She said quietly as she finished.
"You don't like this tie?"
"No, I mean the situation." She said, pulling her cap lower onto her head. Booth nodded grimly and motioned for her to follow him toward the door.
"You ready?" He asked. She nodded her head and they opened his front door to greet the familiar click of the cameras. Booth clenched his jaw tightly and focused all of his attention on Brennan to avoid lashing out at the photographers. He did, however, find solace in the fact that Cole's movie had literally put them to sleep.
"Hey, man. What do you think Cole will do to you when he finds out?"
"Take your hat off, Tempe. We want to see you gorgeous face..."
"Good morning, sunshine..."
I hope you enjoyed that chapter, and I can't wait to write some more!
I'd love to hear from you:)