AN: This chapter will be the last. Thanks again to everyone who has been reading and reviewing!
So this is it, Booth thought as he and Brennan walked down the obscenely long driveway that led to Hodgins' obscenely large mansion. This was where he was going to give Bones the most passionate kiss of her life. Soon every other kiss she'd had would be erased from her mind forever because he was Seeley Booth, the most special of the Special Agents. The most Alpha of the Alpha Males. The most talented and considerate lover a woman could ever want.
Right. The past few years hadn't offered him a lot of opportunities to practice his skills …and that was putting it kindly…but he had kissed plenty of women in his lifetime. He hadn't had any problems pleasing them.
But Bones wasn't like any other woman he'd ever known. What if his best wasn't good enough for her? What if he wasn't good enough for her?
"Booth?" Brennan's hand on his arm jolted him from his thoughts. "You're showing signs of anxiety again. What's wrong?"
Booth took a deep breath to calm his nerves. "Nothing. I'm just excited for the party." He flashed her a patented Seeley Booth charm smile and let one hand drop to its usual position on her back as they approached the front door and rang the door bell. A few seconds later, an uniformed butler opened the door and invited them to come inside.
"Whoa," Booth said as he surveyed his surroundings. Angela wasn't kidding when she said that there would be a lot of people at the party; the place was packed. He recognized many guests from the Jeffersonian, and others from Angela and Hodgins' almost wedding.
"It is quite impressive," Brennan said, thinking Booth was referring to the high ceilings with their golden chandeliers, the elegant furniture, or the multitude of exquisite paintings and sculptures. "Do you see Angela?"
Booth scanned the crowd until he saw the artist. "There's the birthday girl! Happy Birthday, Angela!"
"Happy Birthday," Brennan echoed.
Angela went to greet her best friend and her knight in shining FBI standard issue body armor. "Thank you guys." She gave Brennan a hug. "You look amazing, sweetie. You too, Booth." She laughed as she noticed that Booth's t-shirt and Brennan's dress were identical shades of red. "I love the matching outfits."
Booth and Brennan involuntarily turned to one another to verify the truth of Angela's statement. "The matching wasn't intentional," Brennan explained.
"So you two just happened to wear the exact same color?" Angela asked. "Interesting. Coincidence…or psychic connection?"
"Coincidence," Brennan declared. "Ange, there's--"
"--no such thing as a psychic connection," Booth finished for her.
"I was going to say that," Brennan said. She was annoyed that he had interrupted her.
Booth smiled. "I know."
Angela smiled at the exchange even as she wondered for the millionth time why these two hadn't realized how perfect they were for each other. "Can I get you guys something to drink?"
Booth briefly wondered if he should ask for a beer--it might help his nerves--but decided he didn't want Bones tasting alcohol on his breath; that would defeat the point of his chewing gum. "Nothing for me, thanks," he replied.
"What about you, Bren?" Angela asked.
Brennan had been planning to ask for a beer or a glass of wine, but she didn't want a drink if Booth wasn't going to be drinking with her. "I'm fine, thank you." She saw a man with a gift in his arms and suddenly remembered that her present to Angela, an autographed art history book written by one of the best scholars in the field, was still in the SUV. "I left your present in Booth's car," she told Angela. "I'll go get it."
"I can do that, Bones," Booth offered. The car was at least a half mile away and Bones' shoes didn't appear to be made for walking.
"I was the one who left it in your car, so I should be the one to retrieve it," Brennan argued, although she wasn't looking forward to walking all the way to Booth's car and back in her stylish yet uncomfortable footwear. "Give me your keys."
"No. I'll get it for you."
"Because you're the strong man and I'm some fragile woman who couldn't possibly endure the long journey?" His antiquated gender stereotypes irritated her. That was why she was upset, she told herself…not because he didn't want to kiss her.
"I know you're not fragile," Booth said, thinking of all the times he had seen her take someone down. "I'm just trying to be a gentleman."
"That's not necessary," Brennan argued. "I'm more than capable of taking care of myself."
"But Booth enjoys being a gentleman," Angela told her best friend. "Let him get it for you. Consider it a birthday favor for me."
Figuring that it would be rude to say no to Angela on her birthday, Brennan acquiesced. "Fine."
"Alright," Booth said. "You ladies enjoy yourselves. I'll be back soon."
"Booth?" Brennan called out as he started to walk away.
He turned around. "Yeah?"
Booth smiled at the woman who drove him crazy. The woman he loved. "You're welcome."
Several minutes later, his mission having been accomplished, Booth returned to the party and found Bones and Angela talking in the same spot where he'd left them. "Where should I put this?" He asked Angela, holding up Bones' present.
Angela took it from him. "I'll take care of it." She put it on a table piled high with presents and then walked back to Booth and Brennan.
"You're probably wondering where my present to you is," Booth said. Angela didn't respond, but he could tell he was right. "I do have one for you. It's just not something I can wrap. If Bones agrees, I'd like to give it to you now. "
"Now?" A confused Brennan repeated.
"Now," Booth said again. His doubts about being good enough for Bones had resurfaced while he walked to the SUV and back, and he was worried that if he waited too long he might talk himself out of kissing her.
"Are you sure about this?" Brennan asked, recalling how anxious he had been earlier. "I told you that I would pay for Parker's camp."
"I'm sure, Bones."
Brennan smiled. The fantasy she'd had in the car would be coming true after all. "Are we going to give Angela her present right here, or someplace more private?"
"Someplace more private." As awkward as it might be to kiss Bones in a bedroom, it would still be less awkward then doing it while surrounded by all these people. "Angela, can the three of us go to one of the guest rooms upstairs?"
"Okay," Angela said, smiling broadly at them. "I have no idea what you two are planning, but I'm definitely intrigued."
Angela led Booth and Brennan to a guest room that was roughly the size of Booth's own bedroom. Yet the similarities to his room ended there. This room had expensive looking wooden furniture, floral, feminine wallpaper, and a four poster bed with red satin sheets. He asked Angela to sit on the bed while he and Bones stood in front of it, mere inches away from each other. He couldn't remember the last time he had been so excited--and so terrified--about anything.
"Are you having second thoughts?" Brennan asked as she studied his body language yet again.
"Not at all," Booth assured her. "But I do need to tell you something first. I'm not doing this just because Hodgins blackmailed me. I'm doing this because I want to do it. I've wanted this…wanted you…ever since we met."
Angela gasped loudly, inadvertently reminding both partners of her presence. They turned to look at her. "Sorry. Please, please continue."
Brennan turned back to her partner. "If that's true, why did you barely reciprocate when I kissed you under the mistletoe last year?"
"You kissed Booth last year?" Angela blurted out. "And you didn't tell me? Brennan, I'm supposed to be your best friend!" Booth gave her a pleading expression. "Sorry. I promise I won't interrupt again."
After giving Angela a look of gratitude, Booth returned his attention to his partner. "You kissed me last year because you needed Caroline to do something nice for your family. It didn't seem right to take advantage of that."
"You were being a gentleman," Brennan realized.
"Exactly," Booth said, grateful that she understood.
Brennan gave Booth a sly smile. "You don't have to be a gentleman this time."
Booth grinned. "As you wish, Bones." Putting his arms around her waist, he lowered his mouth to hers. He kissed her softly at first, savoring the sensations it awakened in him, then used the tip of his tongue to lick her lips. When she opened her mouth to him, he let his tongue explore the wonderful new territory and she returned the gesture. His hands left her waist and began traveling up and down her back, while hers clutched his jacket and then moved up to his hair.
Booth was satisfied that the kiss was passionate…definitely the most passionate kiss of his life…but would she be able to say the same?
Maybe. He decided to keep trying, just to be on the safe side. He gave her a series of fast and fiery kisses and she responded in kind, but then he started to worry that he was going too fast. He forced himself to slow down, trading fast and fiery for slow and sensual. He alternated between the two extremes, wondering how he could ever stop kissing her now that he knew how amazing it felt.
Brennan had no intention of stopping either--she had waited too long for this and was enjoying it too much-- but eventually she pulled away from him to catch her breath. Seconds later she realized there was a foreign object in her mouth…his gum. He had taken her gum under the mistletoe; it seemed fitting that she should have his now. "Thanks for the gum," she gasped.
The gum! Damnit, he had meant to take it out before they kissed! At least she didn't seem to mind. She looked happy--really happy--and he was extremely proud of himself for being the one to bring her that happiness.
"WOW," Angela exclaimed, startling both partners; they had completely forgotten she was there. "I knew you guys would be amazing together, but that was even hotter than I imagined." She looked at Booth. "You said Hodgins blackmailed you into kissing Brennan?" He nodded. "If you'll excuse me, I need to go find my man and thank him properly. You can have the room for as long as you need it. No one else should be up here, but you can lock the door from the inside if you want. Have fun!" She winked at them as she shut the door behind her.
Booth laughed. "Angela's a good friend."
"A very good friend," Brennan agreed. "So are you going to kiss me again, or do we need to wait until another one of our friends blackmails us?"
Booth pulled her back into his arms without hesitation. "We've done enough waiting."
Thanks for reading! All comments are greatly appreciated.