Here it is; the start of the sequel to my story What She's Been Through. :) If you haven't read that... then I would suggest doing so before reading this. Otherwise you'll just be lost and not really able to enjoy this fully.
The customary disclaimer: I wish I wrote for Bones, but I don't, and even if I did that still wouldn't make them mine. So it's doubly depressing.
I hope you enjoy this, and sorry it's shorter than my usual chapters. I wanted to get it up at the same time as the final chapter of the first story :)
The dance floor barely seemed to touch their feet as they turned and swirled in perfect movement to the music. She smiled at him as he spun her and then pulled her back close to him. Her long golden dress swung around her body effortlessly, never getting tangled in her legs even though she'd been apprehensively expecting it to.
It was nice to be dancing again, she thought, and it reminded her so much of that wonderful evening. Once again, just like that time, the reason for this was Angela. It always was, after all, she mused. She turned her head as they twirled through the crowd, searching for the face of her best friend.
She caught sight of her close to the center of the floor, she looked beautiful, with her white dress swirling as a very handsome Hodgins spun her. Both seemed so lost in each other that they didn't seem to notice anything else. She supposed that was how she and Booth must have looked that last time, at that restaurant. Maybe even a bit so right now.
It was so nice to see her two friends together like this at last, having finally managed to complete a wedding service.
Angela's intuition was not to be reckoned with; she'd been completely right about Hodgins proposing to her, and he hadn't taken his time either. Angela had told her all the details of the nice evening they had spent together only two weeks after that double-date at another nice restaurant, albeit smaller and more cozy, which had ended in his question. She'd said yes before he'd even finished asking, and Temperance knew that they were both beyond happy with how things had ended. They'd both been miserable, despite how hard they'd tried to ignore it, when they'd been separated.
The wedding had been planned this time, rather than rushed straight to. Temperance was pretty sure this was because they wanted this one to be as different as possible from the last one... probably to make it so that they could remember this one, and its success, far better than the last one, and its failure.
It had been a bit of a challenge for her, she admitted, with all the things that, as the maid of honor, she was expected to do and help with. She knew nothing about planning a wedding, so Angela had done almost all of it, and enjoyed it thoroughly, with her simply tagging along and giving advice which was almost always completely unhelpful.
Nonetheless, though, Angela seemed to have had great pleasure in selecting her own dishware and her own hors-d'oeuvres without her help. It seemed she only wanted her there as company and someone to talk to about all of it. Well, she'd been fine with that, even if she had still thought she'd been letting her friend down a bit.
Booth had been Hodgins' choice for best man, also as Ange had predicted, and he'd apparently planned an excellent bachelor party which she knew he was very proud of. He'd had a good time, and so had Hodgins, that she knew, but she didn't press for details. Apparently the purpose was that it was something you weren't supposed to be told about. A night of freedom or something like that. Booth had assured her, however, that he had behaved himself.
"So are they still going to the same place for their honeymoon?" she asked him.
"Yeah," Booth answered with a nod. "I think it's the one thing they kept the same actually," he added.
She laughed. "Well, it's not like they needed to reuse the decorations or dresses... Hodgins could easily afford all new ones."
"Good point. And I have to say, the bridesmaid dresses really are stunning," he added, resting his forehead up against hers.
"You said you liked them last time," she reminded him.
"Doesn't mean I can't like these more," he said, his voice slightly teasing.
"Cam looks nice, too," she commented as they caught sight of their other friend who was dancing, rather uncomfortably, with Angela's father, and didn't seem to know how to escape from her predicament.
He glanced in the direction she was looking and nodded, but his eyes went right back to her. "Not as beautiful as you do," he murmured in her ear, pulling her into another spin.
She laughed as she spun around and came back to him, letting him carry her around the dance floor lightly.
They caught sight next of Sweets and Daisy, who weren't the most elegant dancers but who seemed to be enjoying themselves.
"How long have those two been going out?" Booth asked, shaking his head slightly in disbelief.
She had to admit, she had not seen it as likely that those two would be able to stay together for long at all, and yet it had been around six months and they still seemed to care very much for each other.
"If we get invited to their wedding, what do you want to bet she'll beg you to be her maid of honor?" he teased.
She groaned, remembering how persistent Daisy had been with her near-worship tendencies in the lab. "And if Sweets asks you to be his best man?" she countered, grinning as she saw him wince. "You couldn't really tell him no; we work with him constantly and I think he really looks up to you, whereas Daisy no longer works in correlation with the Jeffersonian and I have no obligation to say yes when she probably knows other woman who would be far better suited."
"Now that wasn't nice, Bones," he said, but his eyes betrayed him. She could see the amusement sparkling in their depths.
"What about this, then?" she asked, pressing her lips to his before he could say anything else.
He smiled at her. "Very nice. Thanks, Tempe," he murmured, kissing her again.
She pulled away, giving him a hard look, "Booth, don't call me Tempe," she said firmly.
He laughed, "Come on, Bones, you said I could before, you can't just go changing your mind on me..."
"I'm Bones," she replied, leaving no room for argument. "I just... I don't want anything replacing that. And I'm free to change my mind if I want to, so there."
He chuckled, presumably at her use of 'so there,' and then pulled her back into the dance since they'd come to a standstill and almost been collided with by Nigel-Murray and his girlfriend.
She offered her grad-student a small smile, and he grinned back before turning his attention back to the girl. She didn't blame him. The young man was so very factual and dedicated to his work that him being in a relationship must be something he wanted to hold onto desperately. She'd heard the way he'd been talking about her to Ange at the lab; it seemed like he really liked this girl.
The other interns were here as well, since they were friends of Ange and Hodgins now, but she hadn't seen much of any of them. They were mostly polite when she'd first greeted them before the wedding had begun, but she knew they were disappointed that she'd selected Nigel-Murray instead of them, Wendell in particular. It hadn't been an easy choice, by any means, but she thought she had made the right one in the end.
While Nigel-Murray tended to get lost in his facts, he was still very precise, and he fit in well, the result of which being that he was quickly improving and getting better at dealing with only the facts they needed. That didn't mean he wasn't a constant pool of trivia whenever they weren't incredibly busy with something important, though.
Wendell had been the other logical choice, since Fisher was... well, depressing, to be honest, and not something she needed on a day to day basis to have to listen to. Good worker... bad conversation. Wendell, however, was also a good worker. His downfall was his tendency to not understand the rules. Booth had been relentless in teasing her about that when they'd been struggling over the decision and she'd continuously came back to that point. He'd said that she wasn't one to talk, seeing as she had ignored many rules and normal protocol so she could go out in the field and have a gun.
It all came down to who she felt she could trust to be there everyday and provide the best output of skills. None of them were exactly the fit to fill the hole left by Zach, because that would be impossible, but Nigel-Murray... he was as close as it got. And she found she had a soft spot for his consistency in fact giving. Zach had done that on occasion to... gone off on very fast-paced analysis or talked out loud needlessly while he did something on the computer.
Fisher and Wendell would, however, be able to get excellent positions elsewhere. She'd even offered them the opportunity to return to the Jeffersonian if, after they received their doctorates, there was a need for more hands in the lab.
Hodgins and Nigel-Murray got along well, in addition. That was another key point that she'd been looking for; she wanted someone who would be able to befriend the entomologist and maybe help him as he continued to heal from losing his best friend. Having Angela back was definitely helping him, but having someone with whom to do his sometimes unorthodox experiments with had clearly improved his mood immensely. Just last week she'd peered into the back of the laboratory to find the two of them attacking cantaloupes and laughing excitedly while juice went everywhere. While she was certain that whatever data they were trying to gather could certainly be gained in a different, and much cleaner, method, she hadn't interrupted them. Let them have their fun when it didn't involve explosions, she figured. And as long as all that sticky juice got cleaned up when they were finished.
"Nigel looks happy," Booth commented as they passed by him and his girlfriend once more. She nodded, not bothering to correct him this time. He'd decided that he was going to call the grad-student Nigel, and he was immovable on that fact. He claimed that Nigel-Murray was just getting ridiculous to say all the time, and unless she'd rather him say 'hey grad-student' every time he wanted to get the young man's attention, then she would have to deal with it.
Nigel-Murray hadn't really known how to react to it, but he wasn't telling Booth to stop, and that was all the encouragement the agent seemed to need.
"You gunna be ready to get back to murder tomorrow?" he asked her. "You know, without them?"
She sighed, "Yeah, I will be." The lab was going to be incredibly empty without the presence of her other two close friends; but with Booth, Cam, and Nigel-Murray there they'd be able to still work on the most recent case... which had admittedly not been getting the quality attention it deserved while everyone had been so busy getting ready for the wedding.
"They're only going to be gone for what... two weeks I think?"
"Hodgins kept the whole thing secret from Ange, so I'm as clueless as she is," she informed him.
"Oh. Right," he said, frowning. "But don't worry, they'll be back before you know it."
Time did seem to be flying by for her, she realized. Had it really been three months since... well... she'd started going out with Booth?
Today was August seventeenth; she knew the date so well because it had been pressed into her head more than enough times over the past few months during the preparations. Everything was leading up to the seventeenth, as Ange had put it, and the week before today had been chaos making sure everything was going to be perfect for this one event.
For Hodgins' sake, she hoped he remembered August seventeenth as well as she did. Because he was the one who was supposed to forget it, according to Booth. Something about husbands being unable to recall their anniversary and it being the number one cause of major fights. She hadn't understood a good portion of that conversation, since it made no sense why the recollection of a few numbers would be the difference between happiness and a bitter argument. Until of course, Booth had informed her two days ago that it was the anniversary of the day he met her. August fifteenth, he'd said, smiling. She'd been amazed that he knew that... and then it had sort of made sense why it was so important, even though she couldn't really explain it logically to anyone. Maybe there was no logical way to tell why it made her suddenly feel so warm and comfortable when he told her he remembered the day they met. It just... did.
But she didn't need to think about that now, she told herself. She just smiled and let herself be led around the dance floor, focusing her thoughts only on how dancing with Booth seemed to be one of the few things that could erase all of her worries.