AN1: This story contains a slight spoiler for "A Night at the Bones Museum".

AN2: Thanks as always to my brilliant beta CalleighAryn.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

After five years of missed opportunities, Bones and I had our first real kiss because she opened my CD player.

I had invited her over to my place for dinner after we'd solved an especially difficult case. She had cooked her amazing macaroni and cheese for me a couple weeks before, so I figured I could return the favor by making her ravioli served with the Booth Family marinara sauce. It was a great recipe, but it was too much work to make just for myself. For Bones, the effort was well worth it.

I was taking an experimental bite of the sauce (it burned my tongue) when I heard her knock on the door. I raced to answer it, and when I did, I'm pretty sure my mouth dropped open. I wouldn't have been surprised if my eyes had bulged out of my head too, just like in the old cartoons. I could barely breathe. The sauce had been boiling hot, but my partner was even hotter.

"Are you okay, Booth?" She asked, probably wondering why I was speechless.

"Uh…yeah. I'm fine. I was just…surprised to see you so dressed up." While I had on a t-shirt and dark jeans, she was wearing a long red dress that showed as much cleavage as the dress she'd worn to the Anok exhibit the week before. It took every ounce of restraint I had to maintain eye contact and not marvel at her perfect skin.

Her equally perfect eyes seemed to be studying my casual clothes. "I'll go home and change into something less formal."

As she started to turn around, I grabbed her elbow. "Don't change, Bones. You look beautiful." She blushed and I felt myself reddening in return. I rarely told her she was beautiful, even though I thought it every day. "Come on in, make yourself at home, and I'll change, alright?" I flashed her the charm smile and she smiled back. God, I love it when she smiles.

"Alright." She walked into my apartment and I shut the door behind her.

"Dinner's almost ready. The ravioli's done, but the sauce needs a few minutes to cool off. Do you want a drink? I can get you a beer, or some of that fancy wine you like." I held up the bottle I'd bought the night before as triumphantly as if I'd stomped on the grapes myself.

"Wine sounds nice."

As I poured the wine into a glass and handed it to her, it struck me how my actions would look to the outside world. Although I told everyone who asked that Bones and I were 'just partners', I had to admit I had never cooked dinner or bought wine for any partner before Bones. Anyone watching us then would have assumed we were on a date. I wondered if Bones and I would ever go on a real date, or if we'd end up settling for our 'surrogate relationship' for the rest of our lives. Depressed by the thought that 'eventually' might never come, I poured a glass of wine for myself. I took a few sips and then told Bones I was heading to my bedroom, where, after a few minutes of considering my choices, I changed into one of my nicer suits. Bones smiled when she saw it and I knew I'd made the right choice.

I asked her to sit at the dining room table while I went to the kitchen to check on the sauce. It had cooled down enough to serve, so I brought it and the ravioli to the table. Bones put a forkful of food in her lovely mouth and said that it was excellent. Not 'good', not 'great', but excellent. If it had been any other woman, I might have wondered if she was lying to be polite, but I knew Bones never said anything she didn't mean. She really thought my cooking was excellent. The compliment warmed me even more than the wine.

While we ate, we talked easily about the case, Bones' interns, and Hodgins' latest experiment, which had burned a hole in a wall and set off the Jeffersonian's sprinkler system. As long as we kept talking about work, I could pretend that my feelings for her were strictly professional. But during moments of silence, I would find myself staring at her and thinking about how wonderful she was and how much I wished this was a real date. I worried that sooner or later she would notice my very unprofessional stares, so I decided that we needed something to fill the silence.

I asked Bones to put on some music, telling her she could pick any CD she wanted from my collection. She walked over to my CD player, opened the lid, and took out the CD inside. She looked at the label and turned to me with a smile. "You were listening to me read Bred in the Bone?"

I felt my face getting hot. How could I have forgotten that I had one of Bones' audio books in there? "I had it on last night because I couldn't sleep. Listening to your books helps." I always listened to her books when I had insomnia, or whenever I missed her. When she was in Guatemala for six weeks, I had them on all the time.

Her smile faded. "Oh."

Hating to see her look unhappy, I rushed to her side. "What's wrong?"

"You said that you liked my books, but if listening to them puts you to sleep, that would suggest you find them boring or--"

"I don't think they're boring," I interrupted, inching closer to her. "I love your books, Bones. Listening to them doesn't put me to sleep; it helps me sleep. I like hearing the sound of your voice. It's…" I struggled to find the right word. "…soothing."

Her smile slowly returned. "If you want to hear my voice, why not call me?"

"You really want me calling you at 1 or 2 a.m. every night?" I said with a laugh.

She tilted her head, looking at me with a thoughtful expression. "You listen to me read my books every night?"

I hesitated, wondering if I had already said too much, but I didn't want to lie to her. "Not every night…but most nights."

She studied me for a few more moments, then started leaning towards me. I realized that she was going to kiss me, but I couldn't believe it was really happening. While my brain was in shock, thankfully my body remembered what to do. I started moving towards her, and the next thing I knew she had grabbed my shirt and covered my mouth with hers. Once my brain caught up with my body, I put my arms around her waist and happily followed her lead.

Bones said once that there's no such thing as magic, but, believe me, that first kiss was magical. Maybe it was so incredible because Bones kisses as well as she does everything else, or because we had both wanted it so much for so long. At that moment, I didn't care why it was the best kiss of my life. I was too busy mentally rejoicing that I was finally kissing the woman I loved. The kiss seemed to go on forever and yet was over too soon. But I wasn't disappointed when we pulled apart; I knew we'd be kissing again soon. From the sparkle in her eyes and the smile on her lips, I knew that she loved me too.

Since that night, I haven't needed Bones' audio books to help me sleep. Now I sleep soundly with the author herself in my arms.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Thanks for reading! All comments are greatly appreciated.