It was nearly ten o'clock at night when Dr. Wyatt announced that he needed a well-deserved good night's sleep and prepared to leave. Dr. Brennan and Agent Booth were cozily on the couch – they weren't cuddling, but they were close, their shoulders and thighs touching in a kind of non-intimate intimacy.
"Oh, no, don't get up," Dr. Wyatt said, chuckling in his light, British accent. "I'll show myself out." He turned to me. "Ah, Dr. Sweets, would you like to share a ride home, perhaps?"
I took a passing glance at Dr. Brennan and Agent Booth, and then looked back at Dr. Wyatt. Despite my earlier epiphany, I still had one question for this brilliant, now-retired psychologist. I wasn't entirely sure if he sensed that, and was offering for my benefit, or if he sensed something between the two partners and was hoping to let them alone. Either way, I was going to jump on my chance to ask Dr. Wyatt my one last question. I said goodbye and thank you to my hosts, and followed Dr. Wyatt out the door.
"Ask your question, Dr. Sweets," Dr. Wyatt said, smiling knowingly, his head held high with a confident tilt.
"How'd you know I needed to ask you something?" He lifted an eyebrow at me. Oh. Psychologist. "Well, when Dr. Brennan and Agent Booth came to get me for dinner, I realized what you meant…you know, about them not being opposites."
"Ah, good. I wondered what exactly put you in that fidgety state during dinner. I thought that was the case, but it's never polite to assume, of course."
"I was fidgety during dinner?" I asked, flushing.
"Not in an especially noticeable way, no, but you did continuously give me glances of both knowing and questioning natures, as though you wanted –"
"–to ask you something," I finished. He nodded smartly, and we stepped into the elevator.
As Dr. Wyatt pressed the button for the ground level, I stopped beating around the bush and asked it: "Dr. Wyatt, you never did answer my question, though. Which one of them knows that they share an attraction?"
He tilted his head in surprise. "Why, isn't that obvious?" The elevator bell interrupted him as the doors slid apart.
"Not to me!" I answered, following him out of the elevator like an eager puppy. (Well, I was eager.)
"It's both of them."
I stopped in my tracks. "Wait – wow – what?"
Dr. Wyatt laughed and turned to face me, bobbing on the soles of his feet. "Oh, Dr. Sweets. You asked the wrong question. When I first met with you, I told you that one of them is acutely aware of their attraction and struggles with it daily. High emphasis on the 'struggles with it daily' part."
My left eye started to twitch, and I shook my head. "Wait…so both of them know, but one struggles with it and one doesn't?"
"I believe that to be correct," he said. He turned around and started briskly for the entrance.
"Dr. Brennan must be the one struggling," I mused aloud. Once outside, we waved for a cab. "She isn't, as Agent Booth would say, a 'heart person.' She builds walls around herself to keep anyone from getting too close, thinking she can keep herself from being hurt if they leave. It's a typical reaction for someone with a past like hers, her experiences in the foster system and all."
"Hmm…perhaps…" With Dr. Wyatt's words, I was once again hearing a caveat…déjà vu.
"What?" I asked. Truth be told, I was feeling a little exasperated. Would no conclusion I made ever be plausible for him? Would I never get those two right?
Would a cab never pull over?
"Well, it just occurs to me that Dr. Brennan is quite adept at compartmentalizing. She is indeed far more of a 'brain person' than she is a 'heart person,' but therein lies her uncanny ability. When dealing with a conflict that most people use their feelings to examine, Dr. Brennan examines it with logic. She falls back on scientific knowledge and trusts it to protect her unfailingly." Dr. Wyatt stopped and put his fingers in his mouth, letting out a shrill whistle. Within the moment, a taxi cab swerved over to pick us up. "It wouldn't surprise me at all if Dr. Brennan brushed aside her attraction to Agent Booth with some long trail of scientific explanations involving biological natures, or some such thing," he finished, buckling his seat belt as I closed the cab door.
Dr. Wyatt gave him the address of the FBI Headquarters. Both of our cars were in the parking lot – or, in this case, my car and his rental.
"So…Dr. Brennan, despite her untraditional views, her insecurity issues, and her troubled past, is not the one struggling daily?" I asked. It made sense, but I wasn't sure how Booth fit into the part of the struggler. "It doesn't make sense that Agent Booth is the one struggling, though, Dr. Wyatt. He's generally the more open, warm person – the one everyone likes and gets along with, at least before something occurs to provide tension and conflict. He's the heart person – why would he have trouble?"
Dr. Wyatt glanced over at me knowingly, with a small smile. "He is the heart person, Dr. Sweets. Agent Booth is the one struggling because he knows what he feels toward the lovely Dr. Brennan; he finds a deeper meaning in it than she does. The heart person feels what the brain person dismisses."
I slumped heavily against the leather of the cab seat. "Wow." It clicked. Dr. Wyatt was right. "Wow."
"You two some kind o' shrinks?" the cab driver asked. He shook his head incredulously. "Whate'er floats your boat..."
The cab pulled up to the FBI Headquarters building, and Dr. Wyatt and I parted ways. "Good luck with your cooking endeavor," I said to Dr. Wyatt.
He turned back to me with a twinkle in his cheery eye. "Good luck with your duck endeavor," he replied, whistling to himself as he hopped in his rental.
Confused, I watched him drive away. "Duck?"
I wasn't quite ready to go home. I went up to my office and sat in my plush, comfortable chair, the one facing the door. I sat in it and remembered all the times Dr. Brennan and Agent Booth had been sitting right in front of me. Over the past…nearly two years, now…I had seen them in just about every way: through their pain, through their happiness, their sadness, their fears, their teasing…
It was remarkable that I didn't know them at all. I had all the puzzle pieces, but it was Dr. Wyatt that put them together.
The phone rang. I reached over and picked it up. "Dr. Sweets."
"Bowling. Saturday. You in?" It was Agent Booth's clipped. yet amused tone, with Dr. Brennan's hushed voice in the background, saying something I couldn't understand. "Bones says 'please,'" Agent Booth added in an exasperated tone. I heard a muffled giggle and had to wonder if the two had had more than a couple of beers since I left.
I sat back. "Sure, I'm in. Make sure you drink a pot of coffee or two before you drive Dr. Brennan home." I hung up the phone and looked between it and the stack of papers that was my manuscript. Over a year's worth of blood, sweat and tears had gone into that manuscript, and it was wrong. I looked down at it, at the skinny "x" I'd drawn through the title, and at my scribbled, corrected title: "Bones: The Heart of the Matter." I thought of the phone call, an example of the partners' continued efforts to include me - even if they had to be slightly drunk to work up the nerve to do something they weren't certain that they wouldn't regret doing later. It made me grin. "They really are good together," I told the silent office. My troubled manuscript stared back.
I unclipped the stack, and removed the title page. Carrying it in one hand and the stack in the other, I went over to my desk. I put the title page on the glass of my desk and the stack in the garbage can.
And I switched the computer on, opened a new document, and began to write.
I hope you enjoyed this. :) It's a lot of fun writing from Sweets' point of view. I might do a sequel to this, although not in the same format or with the same narrator. Whaddya say, folks? Reviews are love - I'd like to know what you think, even if you hate it.