Another Christmas Alone?

Summary: Brennan/Booth. Christmas fic. With Parker staying with Rebecca and her boyfriend for Christmas, Booth and Brennan both seem to be spending Christmas alone. Will the festive season bring the two partners even closer together?

Please go easy on me, this is my first ever Bones fic! This will probably end up being about 3 or 4 parts long. Reviews are really appreciated! Xx

"Bloody Christmas." Forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan muttered to herself as she crunched through the snow dusted streets to where she had parked her car. With a gloved hand she rummaged through her winter coat pocket for her car keys. Flashing lights were illuminated against the dark night sky and she could hear carols being played somewhere. It was the day before Christmas Eve and the Jeffersonian Institute was officially closed for Christmas, that didn't mean that it wouldn't be business as usual if a particularly pressing case came in over the festive period. Brennan found herself hoping that this would be case and it would definitely beat spending Christmas alone again. As if last year hadn't been bad enough, she may have been at work but it didn't stop it hurting when she saw all of the visitors her colleagues had when she was alone. Brennan had spent her whole career putting the job she loved before the people she loved but it only affected her at Christmas. Seeing everyone else's happiness just made her feel hollow inside.

Eventually she located her keys and unlocked her car; she climbed inside the cold vehicle, which provided only a little protection from the elements. She quickly turned the key in the ignition and put the heater on at its highest setting. Brennan placed her case files on the seat beside her and pulled away from the parking space, thinking only of the leftover Chinese takeaway and the bottle of wine chilling in her refrigerator. It wasn't much of a start to the Christmas period but it was what Brennan wanted, and needed, right now. The festive season always seemed to bring a caseload into the lab and Brennan and her co-workers had been working flat out for the past few weeks. All of them were looking forward to a few days off to relax, all of them except Temperance Brennan.

She recalled a conversation she had had earlier with her partner Agent Seeley Booth.

"Are you doing anything for Christmas, Booth?" She asked, she had been trying to take his advice, and Angela's for that matter, about being more involved with the people in her life and not just the science of her job. Brennan assumed that Booth would be spending Christmas with his son Parker but she was to be proved wrong.

"Nothing." He grunted as he pulled the Crown Vic into a space outside the lab. "You?"

Brennan shook her head; still surprised that Booth hadn't mentioned Parker. Maybe she should ask him about it? The ringing of Booth's cell phone shattered the moment and the question died on Brennan's lips before she could verbalise it.

"I've got to get back. I'll see you around. Merry Christmas, Bones."

Brennan placed her hand on the door handle and paused before she got out.

"Merry Christmas, Booth."

Now, she reflected, maybe she wasn't the only one who would be spending Christmas alone.

Brennan cautiously navigated her car through the icy streets of downtown DC, braking gently as she approached a set of traffic lights. She was about to pull away again once the lights turned to green but a disturbance ahead caused her to turn up a side, in the opposite direction to her home. She pulled up against the curb and headed towards a group of people huddled around something in the two-inch deep snow. As Brennan approached the group looked up at her and she produced her identity card from the Jeffersonian Institute. After studying the ID two of the group moved aside and Brennan saw a horrific scene before her. She had seen many skeletal remains before but none chilled her more than finding what was left of a child, it seemed especially cruel at Christmastime.

"I'm Dr Temperance Brennan for the Jeffersonian Institute." She confirmed again. "I'd like you all to step away from the body please." Although the remains were seriously decomposed there was still a high risk of the body being contaminated by these onlookers.

The group dispersed and headed to their cars or their houses for those who lived nearby but on the promise that they would give statements to the police when they arrived. Brennan reached for her cell phone.

"Booth, we have a problem." She said as soon as her partner answered.

She heard the tired sigh at the end of the line. "What is it Bones?"

"There's a body; decomposed, on the corner of 9th Avenue." Brennan explained.

"Okay, I'll send a unit and meet you down there in ten minutes."

Booth hung up the phone, so much for his peaceful Christmas but at the same time at least he and Brennan wouldn't be alone.

Brennan pulled on her blue jumpsuit over her work clothes, scraped her auburn curls back and put on latex gloves before heading over to the corpse. As she gave the body a cursory examination, Booth briefly interviewed each of the witnesses. When he was done he approached Brennan, his notebook in hand.

"The woman over there, Denise Fielding, says she saw a dark blue van pull away from here earlier today but didn't think anymore of it until she saw the body on her way out to pick her sister up from the airport."

Brennan nodded, looking up at her partner from where she crouched beside the body. Her initial examination of the body told her that it was a young boy somewhere between the age of seven and nine years old.

"I'll need to get the body back to the Jeffersonian and examine it immediately." Brennan told Booth, pushing all thoughts of Chinese takeaway and chilling bottles of wine out of her head.

"But Bones, it's Christmas, the lab will be closed." Booth argued, knowing it was futile but he could see the fatigue in Brennan's sharp blue eyes.

"Booth, I think finding out what happened to this little boy is far more important than the Christmas holidays." Brennan argued, standing up now and placing her hand on her hip.

"Point taken." Booth agreed. "I'll come back to the lab with you."

"You don't have to." Brennan replied. "I'm sure you've got other places to be. As you said, it is Christmas."

"It's nothing that can't wait." He assured her.

Almost an hour after she had left the Jeffersonian for what she thought would be her Christmas break; Temperance Brennan was back inside the almost empty building. The body of the young boy was laid out on one of the examination tables and Brennan began to examine more closely. Booth, having removed his outdoor jacket, was standing nearby, coffee cup in hand, as he watched the master at work. There was something so soothing about observing the methodical way in which Temperance Brennan worked. He realised how long he must have been watching her when he took a sip of coffee and found it to be cold.

"Bones?" He called. "Can I get you a cup of coffee?"

"Thanks Booth." Brennan replied, her eyes never leaving the body before her, her attention never wavering from the task at hand.

Booth headed for the coffee machine and dispensed two cups of the hot caffeinated liquid.

"What are you doing here?" He heard a voice ask from behind him and Booth spun round in surprise, just managing to maintain his grip on the coffee cups. He found himself face to face with Cam.

"Working a case with Brennan." He told Cam, and briefly explained the events of the last few hours.

"But it's the day before Christmas Eve." Cam said when Booth had finished speaking.

Booth rolled his eyes. "And you think I haven't tried telling her that? You know Brennan, once she gets her teeth into something she won't let go." He didn't add that this was one of the many things he loved about his lady scientist.

Cam smiled ruefully. "Well, I'm leaving now, enjoy your Christmas break Seeley."

"Thanks Cam. You too." He replied before taking the coffee cups back to Brennan.

Another two hours and more cups of coffee later Brennan bagged and tagged the evidence and took off her overalls, letting her hair fall loose from it's tight bun.

"I've done all I can for tonight. I'll come back and do some additional examinations in the morning." She told Booth who opened his mouth to speak but Brennan stopped him. "I know what you are going to say, Booth."

The detective looked surprised. "I was just going to suggest we stopped for pizza somewhere as it's getting late and I haven't eaten since lunchtime."

Brennan smiled. "Okay." Anything else she was going to say was silenced as her stomach grumbled loudly.

They took Brennan's car, Booth decided to be charitable seeing as it was the festive season so he let his partner drive. They stopped at an all night pizza parlour and Booth offered to go out and get the takeout.

"Does ham and mushroom sound good to you?" Booth asked, pulling his wallet from the pocket of his charcoal grey suit and looking back at Brennan before he went to order their food.

Brennan wondered if it was any coincidence that this happened to be her favourite pizza topping and nodded enthusiastically. While she waited for Booth to return, Brennan turned on the radio and scanned through the stations searching for anything that was not Christmas music. Eventually she gave up and waited for Booth in silence. She reflected that although this was not her ideal Christmas she was still doing the job she loved and spending time with a man she cared more about than she was willing to let on, even to Angela.

More coming soon...please review...x