Thanks for all the feedback and support for my last fic. Oh, and a special thanks for those of you who stepped into the CSI:NY realm and read the one I posted there. The following takes place after "The Critic in the Cabernet," which, in my opinion, was one of the best episodes of the series, not just the season. However, I must say that, from the previews, I'm more excited for next week's episode. This might be slightly out-of-character, but seriously, after talks of having your partner's baby and hallucinations of cartoon babies, is there really any such thing as out-of-character-ness? Anyway, enjoy!

VVVVV

Two weeks after the events of 'The Critic in the Cabernet.'

"Hey, Bones!" Booth yelled from the bedroom.

"Yeah?"

"Could you come in here?"

Brennan paused in the doorway. "What is it?"

"Let's talk," Booth stated.

"That's what we're doing, Booth," she replied.

"No, I mean really talk."

Neither had mentioned the events of the days prior to Booth's surgery, though they'd been virtually inseparable in the two weeks since. Though allowed to go home, Booth was under strict bed rest orders, and Brennan had taken it upon herself to make sure he followed the doctor's instructions.

"Oh."

"You can come in and sit on the bed, Bones. I'm not going to bite."

"I know," she said as she slowly made her way to the bed. She sat sideways on the edge of the bed so that she faced him but also kept one foot on the floor.

Deciding there was no easy or natural segue into the topic he wanted to talk about, he cut straight to the point. "How was your appointment with the fertility specialist?"

Brennan knew he'd asked her about that sooner or later, yet she was surprised by his direct approach. "I didn't go."

"Why not?" he asked as he shifted in the bed and sat up.

"I cancelled."

"Yeah, I got that part. I'm asking why you cancelled."

"The timing was off. You were sick. And I'm not sure I want a baby right now," she told him.

"But you were so insistent about having a baby."

Brennan broke eye contact with Booth and shifted further onto the bed, crossing her legs Indian-style and resting her elbows on her knees. "I know," she said with a small laugh.

He cocked his head and studied her. Was her laughter tinged with embarrassment?

"What is it, Bones?"

"It's nothing."

"Come on. You can tell me."

She shook her head. "You'll laugh."

He held up his hand, palm facing her. "I promise I won't."

Brennan sighed and closed her eyes, gathering her thoughts. "I wanted a baby, but I realized there are more important things to take care of first."

"Like what?"

"Angela said something to me, and though I disagreed with her at the time, I can see her logic."

"What did she say?"

Her gaze met his, and he offered an encouraging grin.

"She said that we never know what's going to happen. That something could go awry at any moment, and that I shouldn't continue to keep people at arm's length."

"She tried to tell you what to do?" His voice hinted at teasing, but he never cracked a smile.

"That was my reaction, too. And I was quite angry with her."

"And now?"

"I'm not angry." She grew silent for a moment, then added, "Perhaps she knows what she's talking about."

"How so?"

"Sooner or later our luck is going to run out."

"But you don't believe in luck."

She cocked her head and gave him a look. "What I mean is that we're in dangerous situations on a regular basis. We chase killers, we've both been kidnapped, the brain tumor…" her voice lowered on the last one.

"It was benign."

"But eventually something is going to happen that one or both of us won't live through."

"There's no need to be morbid, Bones."

"I'm being realistic, Booth."

"So, what are you saying?"

"No baby. At least, not now. I want to make the most of the moments we do have."

"Moments?"

"Yeah, the work-related ones as well as the other, more personal ones."

Both were aware of the mood change in the room.

A small smile pulled at the corners of Booth's lips. "And a baby doesn't exactly fit into the plan."

"Technically speaking, caring for a baby takes the commitment of time, and right now, and in the near future at least, I want to spend that time with you."

"Like dating?" Booth grinned.

"Well…"

"You think I'm handsome, you want to date me," Booth sang, teasingly.

Brennan laughed. "Sandra Bullock did that way better than you, Booth."

Booth gasped in mock surprise. "Pop culture reference, Bones? Impressive!"

"I'm not completely lost when it comes to pop culture. I knew who Stewie was."

"Yeah, because I made you watch Family Guy with me," Booth joked. "You know, I sort of miss the little guy."

Brennan stared at him, then grinned and shook her head when he broke into a smile.

"Who needs to hallucinate cartoon babies when there's company like you, here in the flesh?" he said.

"I would hope that a conversation with me is more stimulating than one with a cartoon baby," Brennan replied.

"It definitely is, Bones." He paused and became serious. "So, no baby?"

"No, but if I ever do decide to have a baby, it will be because the timing is right and because we're ready." Brennan stated.

"Now who's being cocky?" The teasing tone was back.

"What?"

"You're assuming that I'll still be willing to donate my boys."

"You wouldn't?" Brennan questioned, her eyebrows crinkling.

"I didn't say that."

"You wouldn't have to go back to the clinic."

"That's good to know, but how would you get my stuff?"

She eyed the bed beside him. "The normal way. Nakedness and passion and perhaps a little emotional bonding."

Booth sputtered in surprise and shifted on the bed again. "Wow, Bones, that is so unlike you." He paused and a thought came to his mind. "Did Angela say that, too?"

"Yes, but she made a good point. Sexual intercourse is the primary way of producing offspring."

"And the nakedness and passion?"

"Obviously, for the best possible chance of procreation, the barrier of clothing would have to be at a minimum. And, statistically, isn't it true that a large percentage of people involved in sexual intercourse experience some level of passion?"

"You're the only person I know who rationalizes sex before it happens," Booth laughed, wondering when 'sex talk' with Brennan became less uncomfortable. "Just promise me one thing, Bones."

"What?"

"No more dancing phalanges," he said, wiggling his fingers.

Her eyebrows once again crinkled in confusion. "Why would sexual intercourse have anything to do with dancing phalanges?"

Booth sighed and rubbed his face with both hands. "For babies, Bones. No more dancing phalanges for babies."

"Why not? It's playful and educational," Brennan argued.

"And kids get teased when they throw out words like 'phalanges.' "

"Then I guess it's a good thing we're not having a baby."

"Yet."

"Right," Brennan agreed with a slight smile. "Yet."

VVVVV

Thanks for reading! Just for the record, I love playing the dancing phalanges game with my young godson. And what makes it even better is that his brother, my 4-year old godson, is now using the word 'phalanges.' It totally cracks me up.