I re-read this story today and thought I'd publish it here.
It was born as a joke and then grew to be a fake ending to the Closet Story... Something I didn't do here because of my survival instinct lol. It's a parody on how slow things seem to be sometimes between B&B... but hey, it's a happy ending! (kinda...)
Thanks to Deb for helping plotting-- sorry, planning this story and betaing... And, Cup? This story was originally designed for your amusement... It's still dedicated to you!!!
Booth saw the elevator's door open before him and was thankful he saw a young man waiting for it. He asked him if he could hold the door open until he could pass through them. He'd broken his right hip last summer when a man ran too close to him and made him fall to the floor. Now he wasn't able to walk faster than a few steps per minute on his best days.
Being 80 years old was no easy feature.
Life was still full of dangers... But there were no bullets, no murderers, no sociopaths he had to catch anymore. He'd left those dangers behind when he'd retired 15 years ago, but was surrounded now by new dangers as he grew old. What once were every day's chores were now a high risk situation: Do you know how difficult it is to have a simple shower when you can't rise your leg more than a few inches?
It had been 15 minutes since he'd set foot on her floor when he finally reached the door. He rested his weight on his walking stick and pressed the doorbell with his free hand.
A few minutes later, the door opened to show a woman peering through glasses so thick the eyes behind them seemed to occupy half her face.
"Booth," she said. "You're late"
"I know, Bones, I'm sorry," he replied as the tortuous process of entering her apartment began. He still thought the distance between the door and the chairs designed to make elder's life easier was too much. But, if things went fine, he might have a say on that."I just have to remind you I'm not 60 anymore. It takes time to move these days."
"I know that, Booth. I know. Listen, do you want some tea? It's time for my mid-afternoon pills. Did you bring yours?"
"Of course I did! I'm not senile!" He said ignoring the whistle that replaced every 's' he said. It had been years since any of them paid any attention to it.
"I'm not saying you are. I'm just asking. There's no need to get defensive."
"Yes, Bones, I brought my pills," he replied as he rolled his eyes. Bickering was still their forte decades later. "And brought my evening pills as well, in case I have the need to take a nap, like the last time I came by."
A half hour later, they were both sat face to face again.
"So, what was that you wanted to ask me?" she asked.
He felt himself going more nervous by the moment. But he knew it was the time, they couldn't keep avoiding the issue anymore.
"Well, Temperance... After we retired, our relationship was coffee. We knew it would be that way. We knew that's what our relationship was going to be... coffee."
"I think I understood that the first time you said it, Booth."
"Just let me finish, ok, Bones?" he stared at her until she gestured him to continue. "Thank you. Anyway, we've met for coffee at least twice a week for 15 years now. We speak over the phone every day. You were with me the day Parker graduated from college, when he got married, and when my grandchildren were born. I hope you know how important you are to me."
She looked at him and felt the weight of years together as partners—professional partners for 30 years and life partners since they'd met(though never romantic partners)—and surprised herself by being nervous but what he could say.
"What's wrong, Booth?" she asked a little afraid of the answer, but still brave enough to get over it.
She arranged her heavy glasses on the bridge of her nose and waited.
"We've known each other for 45 years. Can you believe it?" He was pissed by the wet sound his dentures made when he talked.
"I can imagine it, though there's no need for that since it's what actually has happened between us. Why, can't you?"
"Of course I can. It was a rhetorical question, Bones."
"Ohhh... I understand now."
"So... Well... I was thinking... You know, we know each other so well... And we're not the young people we used to be and..."
"Just say it, Booth. I would have hoped you knew I like things to be bold and direct."
"Would you agree in moving in together?"
The way she opened her eyes looked almost scary through the thick glass.
He thought that was not a good sign.
He should have known he'd waited too long!
"Booth, I don't know... It's kind of sudden... I wasn't expecting—"
"Oh, c'mon, Bones! It's not like I'm going to make a move on you or something... It's not like I'm capable of doing much, anyway..."
"So what's your purpose? I mean," she corrected when she saw it was his time to be surprised. "Why did you think it'd be a good idea?"
"So we can help each other. Things are not easy for us, and I refuse to let anyone else see me weak."
"Ok, let's do it, Booth. Maybe it was time I was reckless!"
"You won't regret it, Bones," he said while putting on one of his patented charm smiles. He'd made sure his dentures had a natural look so he could keep charming what he wanted out of her. "I told you once... Everything happens eventually."