Takes place after Santa in the Slush but before the Verdict in the Story.

Thanks to MoonlightGardenias for her great beta work, encouragement and advise. I really couldn't have written this story without her.

These characters belong to Kathy Reichs, Hart Hanson, Fox, Josephson Entertainment and Far Field Productions, et al. Me, I'm just making them my puppets for a while. Please read and enjoy. Reviews are eagerly awaited. Please no flames.



Seeley Booth was tired of ignoring his feelings for his favourite forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan. It was an attraction that at the start had been relatively easy to ignore. She had so many idiosyncrasies and was so brash and had a self-confidence that made her seem utterly arrogant.

As the months and years passed, those things had become endearing to him rather than irritating. Her confidence was well deserved; she was the smartest person he knew, and despite first impressions, she didn't flaunt it in the least. In fact, her often misquoted sayings and comments of 'I don't know what that means' sometimes made him wonder at how a genius and best-selling author could be so obtuse about everyday things.

All that aside, four years later, Booth's feelings had grown exponentially. His stupid 'crossing the line' speech was now biting him in the ass but good. Now he sat at his desk trying to think of a way to let her know how much she meant to him, and how much more he would like with her.

Shoving himself away from his desk he stood and grabbed his jacket. He was a man of action, dammit!

~~ BONES ~~

A block or so from the diner was a florist that he passed on a regular basis; he headed that way now. As he entered the store, a dark head popped up from behind the counter at the sound of the bell.

"Good-morning, young man. How are you this morning?" Her smile lit her entire face.

Booth returned the smile. "I'm fine, ma'am. Thank you."

"Maggie, please call me Maggie." She came out from behind the counter. "What can I help you with today?"

Booth grinned. "Well Maggie, I need to tell the woman I love how much she means to me," he said rather hesitantly.

Showing him to the cooler with dozens of roses in just as many hues she said, "Roses always say it the best. A dozen long stem red roses will definitely let her know you love her."

Booth shook his head. "That's a little heavy-handed. I prefer something that will challenge her intelligence and let her know how special I think she is."

"So you want the subtle approach?"

"Exactly. Can you help?"

Maggie returned to the counter and pulled a book from a small pile. "This is a list of the meanings of flowers. May I suggest that you send her a bouquet a day expressing how you feel?"

Booth took the book and flicked through the pages. A grin spread across his face. "Yeah, this is exactly what I want."

He spent the next half an hour with a pen and paper, leafing through the pages. Finally he chose seven flowers that expressed his feelings exactly, and the order in which he wanted them sent.

Maggie smiled at him. "What sentiment do you want sent with the flowers?"

Grinning, he said, "Just the first one. She should be able to figure out the rest for herself. Make the Azalea a variation of her name; 'MODERATION'. Her name's Temperance."

Chuckling, the woman put down the order for the week. She was touched at how much effort this man put into his selection. She looked at the delivery name and address. "Temperance Brennan, you are one lucky lady."