A/N: A huge thank you to Mrs. Pollifax for the super fast beta

He sits across the room watching her reassemble the skeleton, concentration etched across her face

He sits across the room watching her reassemble the skeleton, concentration etched across her face. His mind wanders, imagining the intensity of her gaze focused on him, her hands carefully learning him, running across him the same way they inspected the bones before her. He shook his head, trying to clear it. Oh, did he have it bad for her when he even found this erotic.

Booth wasn't even sure exactly when it began, there was no cathartic moment; just the history they had shared over the last few years - solving cases, getting to know each other. Her commitment to bringing justice to those who could not fight for it, the mixture of intelligence with naiveté, even her insane need to find rational scientific reasons for everything; all of it drew him to her.

Plus, so hot; who could resist that?

Every now and then, when they were talking or eating dinner, he almost had the nerve to confess how he felt, but never managed to. She wasn't ready to hear it, not yet. Late at night he'd even go so far as to grab the phone, ready to call her and admit that he was in love with her, wanted to be with her forever, to come over and make love with her, but that was a fantasy he knew couldn't happen.

He even imagined just breaking down and kissing her, right here, in the lab. Gently at first, brushing his lips on hers, then deeper tongues sliding together, but he never gave into the urge. Bones didn't do relationships well, she ran away. Having her in his life as a friend and partner would have to be enough for now. Booth just watched, waited, and imagined; hoping one day she'd realize the potential they had together.