Disclaimer: All characters owned by the Fox network America. No infringement intended. Ever.

Summary: Booth is required to go back to Tokyo for a period of weeks, leaving his partner and Parker behind. Adventure, Angst, humorous situations and some lovin' sprinkled saucily throughout. This is a long story, you'll require space, time and pot's of tea/coffee. Possibly some St Agur and crackers. Enjoy the trip people.

Rating: M+/NC17.

Author thanks: I gratefully, humbly bow respectfully to my beta, Kam. Who without his gentle prodding and sensitive corrections of my appalling grammar and spelling, This piece of fiction wouldn't be worthy of its readers. Thank you, Kam for your patience and encouragement.


Exchange.

Late July, Washington DC, Saturday midday. Dr Temperance Brennan's apartment…

The world renown forensic anthropologist stood beside her newly made bed, clad in casual old jeans and strappy t shirt, sorting a pile of laundry into whites and colours, preparing the two piles diligently. Even geniuses had to do laundry, and Saturday mornings were the optimum time to do this task. Surprising really, when she had enough financial stability now for a house keeper. But Temperance was not that kind of person. She lived simply, had very few vices or extravagances. She had weaknesses like everybody else, of course, she is human.

Dr. Temperance Brennan had a fetish for good quality bed linens. Her favourite designer, Yves De Lorme of Paris. Whose new summer design she had just adorned her king size bed with, elegantly. The package had arrived this morning. The thrill she got with its arrival made her stomach quiver. She mused the sensation was foolish and a little shameful. But what the hell, you only live once. Especially if you are an atheist and rational analytical scientist, who doesn't believe in an after life. Cellular death, is after all, cellular death.

Bones, as she was affectionately, and some what annoyingly called by her FBI partner, Special Agent Seeley Booth. A tall dark, some would say, handsome, father of one son, with whom she had worked with for the last five or so years. He had tagged her with that nick name on their first case. It was a little obvious, she did work with skeletons.

Bones put each pile of washing into two separate checked bags and left her bedroom, flicking an adoring glance back to her perfectly prepared bed. She couldn't wait to sleep in those smooth beautiful linens tonight. Childish yes, but hay ho.

Bones bounced through her apartment to the kitchen, her digital radio oozed soft jazz from her favourite station. The kitchen pristine and modern. She had spent time earlier giving it a spruce up too. In fact, she had been extremely productive this morning. Her whole home looked lovely and smelt like summer. Her balcony doors open wide to let the scented warm summer air in, to freshen the apartment. The shards of sunlight made the whole lounge bright and feel new. She loved the summer, enjoyed the smiles on people's faces. A simple endorphin rush washed through most of her fellow humans, when the sun shone. Lifting spirits and her own.

In her career, darkness, death and sadness were the norm. But on a day like this, those emotions were a distant thought. That was for Mondays.

Bones picked up her apartment keys and laundry, then opened her apartment door. She jumped a little, as a small boy stood poised to ring her bell. He leapt back a little too, giggling cutely.

'Dr Bones, hi! Haaa. I was just about to ring your bell.'

'Hey, Parker.' Bones smiled wide, delighted to see her partner's son, dressed in a funky t shirt and overlong shorts and sneakers. His blonde curly hair, rough and charming. His bright blue eyes sparkled with excitement. 'Oh. Have I forgotten your enrichment?'

'Haaa. No silly. Dad is taking me swimming in your pool. I just came to ask if you want to join us. It's a lovely day?' He took one of her bags gallantly, just like his father would have, without prompting. He had been brought up well. Charmed by his action she didn't admonish, but smiled warmly at his instinctual action.

Booth had asked a special favour of his partner some time back, to enrich his son in the sciences. She had agreed. Bones adored teaching the eight, and three quarters year old, as he proudly corrected when he could.

He soaked up her relaxed, fun lessons. He was a sponge for knowledge. The satisfaction Bones gained from his understanding and excitement made every moment she spent with him precious. They had a understanding, Parker and her. Which was not unlike her and his father. They tolerated each other's quirks of character, delighting in them even. Parker thought she was 'cool' and 'awesome'. The 'best' doctor he had ever met, and often told her so. That stroking of her ego did wonders for her. Making her feel a part of the human race, normal, finally.

The fact that Parker thought she was awesome, probably had something to do with the times she had let him blow things up, and mess around with lasers and chemicals.

Small boys loved making a mess and seeing things fizz, glow and change colour. Shiny dangerous things captured his imagination. Bones was no fool. She understood this and spent time preparing his enrichment. Seeking out interesting experiments to explain the world and universe, and its ways of working to him.

'Yes, it is a gorgeous day, Parker. You're right. Tell you what, help me down to the laundry with these, then I'll join you both on the roof later, ok?'

'Brilliant. Dad's already up there doing lengths. He hates it when I dive bomb his boooring up and downs,' Parker told her sweetly, annoyed by his father's need to do thirty lengths before he played with him.

'Haaa. I bet. How's school?' Bones pushed the lift button.

They descended into the basement, where Parker helped her load the laundry into two machines and start them up. Putting conditioner and soap powder in each. They chatted casually, easy in each other company. They returned via the same method to her apartment, where they parted. Parker carried on to the roof, while Bones went to change.

Bones was delighted by the invitation to join them both. Although it was her pool. She had given them her key to it, and told them to use it anytime as her guests. This would be the first time they had all used it together. And that thought sent a thrill through her. It was almost domestic, and she didn't really mind that sensation one iota.


Bones chose a one piece costume a swirling design, not her usual attire for her weekly swims up on the roof. She didn't want to be too formal on such a delightful day. A matching emerald chiffon sarong and a huge towel to complete her ensemble. Stuffing it all into her kit bag, grabbed some soda for Parker and a quart of lemon ice tea, for her and Booth. Plus, a bag of chips.

She couldn't lose the grin that perched merrily on her lips. She was excited to spend a little time with her two favourite people.

Bones exited the lift, walking along the narrow hall towards the roof. The smell of chlorine and ozone filled her senses. The sunbeams poured through the glass doors that led to the open air pool, causing the corridor to feel exceedingly hot. Making her exposed flesh feel slightly moist. She could see the swimming form of her partner, head down, pounding the pools length at a rate of knots. Parker sat on the edge watching, dangling his legs in the water, waiting for his father to finish his lengths.

Bones felt sorry for Parker. She opened the doors quietly and walked behind him, knelt down beside him with a mischievous smile.

'Parker? Bomb him.' Parker grinned wide, questioning with a rise of his brows, whether he should or not. She gave him a quick affirmation, nodding cheekily. Meanwhile, Booth turned professionally and headed back down the pool unaware.

Bones stood up again, placing her bag on one of the loungers next to Booth and Parker's. They had the pool to themselves.

Booth neared. Parker was waiting for the right moment. Bones stood with hands on hips, waiting. Parker chuckled, turning to look up at her.

'Go on,' she urged sweetly, beaming at the small boy.

Booth neared and Parker took off high into the air, clamped his body into a small ball and landed with a huge splash, right next to his father.

'BOOOMMMBBB!!' Parker shrieked, knocking his father off his pace and stroke instantly. Booth gasped and turned to see Parker surface, with a delirious naughty smile on his features. Booth grabbed him laughing hard, picked him up and threw him effortlessly across the water. Bones laughed hard seeing the small boy flail backwards, screaming with giggles and excitement. Booth snapped around to see Bones standing watching the mêlée with sheer delight.

Bones felt her butterflies tickle her inner stomach walls. She was heterosexual after all. Booth was an Adonis. Chiselled torso, obviously pumped from his laps, smooth chest, powerful biceps. He smoothed the water off his face, over his hair and smiled hard at his partner.

'You put him up to that, didn't you?' he enquired, already knowing the answer, locking eyes with her.

'Yes.'

Did she really sound so feminine? Or was that arousal? She didn't have time to clarify her thought. Booth moved effortlessly to the edge of the pool, and drew his body out gracefully. Dripping, honed and utterly lick-able.

..Oh boy. Definitely arousal… Bones had her answer.

She tried to keep her eyes up but they just refused to stay put.

..Speedos.. Oh no, Speedos. Little ones, or big ones, straining. Dark blue, azure? cobalt? Does that really matter? Shut up Bones!..

'Right, Bones, you're in so much trouble.' He stalked her menacingly, a casual evil smile on his features. He had noted her staring, secretly delighted by her little cheek flush and the shift of her feet she tried desperately to hide.

Booth reached for her arm, taking hold, and began to pull her fully clothed towards the pool edge.

'Arrrhh Haaa. No! Booth. Don't you dare!!' She tried to pull back, grabbing his slippery arm and tugged herself away as best she could. She knew she wouldn't have a chance if he really wanted to chuck her into the cool pool, bathed in sunlight.

'Go on, Dad! Throw her in! Bomb!!!' Parker shouted, egging his father on.

'Arrh! No please, Booth,' she begged a little, eyes puppy like, wrestling with him with an adorable smile on her lips. 'Let me change. Arrrh!' He was having none of that. Booth tugged more forcefully, chuckling with a shake of his head.

'Booommmbbbb!' he growled in her face, close, their eyes dancing. Parker was doing summersaults and laughing madly at the adults.

'No, no, don't, you better not. You were already wet??' She tried to make him see reason. She was losing the battle. 'I brought chips and pop?' Trying a different tack instantly. Genius minds work exceptionally fast, thankfully.

'Oh.' He stilled, then relaxed his grip a little. Bones felt her heart rate settle a tad. Men were so predictable. Dangle the offer of food and they are so easy to distract. 'Cool,' he added.

Bones righted her body, grinning at him looking to her kit bag. 'You're forgiven.' He released her gently, walking closer to her bag. But Bones was not done. She pushed him by the shoulders full force backwards. The look of shock and outrage on his face, as he fell backwards with a smack onto the water, had her and Parker in hysterics.

'Boommmbbb! HAAA!' Bones gave with a crazy screwed up face. She could see Booth swallow a gulp of water, as he sunk below the water line. His laughter almost drowning him.

That was her cue to exit, stage right. She grabbed her bag and trotted off as she watched over her shoulder. Booth spluttered to the surface preparing to chase after her.

'Haaa. Great job, Dr Bones! You bombed him good.' She flicked Parker a glance and a quick wink.

Bones changed, listening to them laugh and splash around cheerfully outside the changing room. Her inner smile no longer inside, it was plastered all over her face. As she looked in the mirror at her Lycra covered body, she took a deep calming breath.

Booth was her ideal. Had all the attributes she looked for in a lover and life partner. He made her laugh. Physically, highly attractive. Strong and dependable. The first man she had ever trusted implicitly. One fly in the ointment; he was off limits. Oh that wasn't her decision, oh no, that was his. He had put boundaries on their relationship. Which was utterly frustrating and essentially annoying.

As the years rolled by, they both knew that eventually that boundary would be breached. It was just a matter of time. They had grown together, learnt to treasure one another. Their relationship was now at a turning point. Move forward or stagnate for another year. Or till another trauma or life changing episode, exposed those thinly veiled mutual feelings. And forced them out into the open.

They may have many differences; financial, intellectual, religious. Opposites sides of the same coin, possibly. They visualised the world in very different ways, but essentially, it was the mutual attraction or was it love? that edged them closer day by day. Case by case. Knowing glance by knowing glance. The boundary between them was fading to grey, and was almost invisible now.

Whatever awaited them, it seemed not too far away. Right now, Bones knew she just needed to enjoy the moment. Not over analyse, which she tended to do. So she picked up her bag and walked out, flicking her towel over her shoulder.


The boys were leaping about in the water, the droplets released from their splashing shone for an instant, suspended like diamonds sparkling around the father and son. Till gravity dragged them back down, framing their smiles and obvious enjoyment of the quality time they shared so rarely. Booth caught her eye as she walked out, placing her bag and towel down on the sun lounger.

It was his turn to stare. Booth already knew she was a strikingly beautiful woman. Had the most enchanting eyes, and the smoothest skin. But seeing her virtually naked in a swimsuit was quite literally, better than Christmas morning. She displayed her many charms openly. He dragged his eyes back reluctantly to his son's, who were watching his father with a sweet smile.

'You really like Dr Bones, don't you, Dad?' Parker said almost at a whisper.

'Parker? Sssh.' Booth ducked his son under the water, by pushing his head down for a few seconds, silencing him instantly.

'What's the secret?' Bones asked, stepping to the edge of the pool, tying her hair up in a bun effortlessly. Parker reached up and tried to push his fathers hand off his head.

'No secret, Bones,' Booth said nonchalant, lying badly. Taking another sneaky look over her body and storing that image away. 'Umm great costume, Bones, really suits you.'

'Thank you. Don't you think you should let Parker up?' Amused by the still struggling Parker. Booth was still distracted.

'Oh, yeah.' He did, then a spluttering little boy surfaced, faced red and puffing.

'Dad!? I was nearly out of breath!?'

'Sorry little man, you ok?' he asked, rubbing his hair affectionately, Parker grinned.

'Yeah I'm fine. Let's see who can hold their breath the longest?' Parker challenged.

'Kay,' Bones said, charmed by Parker's enthusiasm. Then she dived in elegantly without making barely any splash. Piercing the water like a hot knife through butter. She swam several meters under water, away from the pair then eased up on the other side of the pool. The boys watched in awe at her gracefulness. So unlike them, waves and splashes followed their every move.

They both looked at each other and smiled. 'She's good, Dad.'

'You have no idea, little man.'

'Come on then, you two!' Bones urged them forwards, making her way to the long dimension of the pool. They followed, racing each other, Booth pulling the little boy's leg back because he was beating him. Parker shouted a muffled wet, 'Cheater!' His father swam up close to Bones and grinned, their eyes sparkled cutely.

'You're so cruel, Booth.' Chastising him with a shove to his shoulder, he rocked a little.

'Nah. He loves it. Don't cha?'

'Yeah it's fine, Dr Bones. He's only messing with me,' Parker said easing her, taking up position on her other side.

Bones leant down to the boy's head and whispered in his ear affectionately, 'We'll get him, Parker.'

'Okay come on, let's do this,' Booth said, dismissing them ganging up on him.

'Ok, three deep breaths, on my mark and we swim under water as far as we can. Then stay under as long as we can.' Parker nodded, understanding. Booth set his watch to stopwatch. They all took their three deep breaths.

'Go!' Booth barked, Parker rushed off, Booth and Bones exchanged a sly glance and smile, then ducked under pushing off from the wall. They made steady progress down the pool.

Parker came up panting just making the far end, obviously flustered and out of puff. He trod water watching the shadows near, saw them touch the wall beside him and turn, heading back up the pool.

Parker sunk his shoulders in defeat, but intrigued to see who would win. Three quarters of the way down they both stopped and turned to face one another under water. Their smiles fixed. Bones' hair had unravelled a little and splayed out around her head, making it look like she wore a titian halo. Booth crossed his legs and sunk down to the bottom. Bones did the same watching him intently. A wavy apparition of Parker appeared at the edge of the pool, standing now to get a better view.

Booth reached for her hand which she had no trouble taking. He eased her nearer, grinning madly, flaring his eyes at her. He looked at his watch and then her. Bones thought he looked a little strained. She let a little stream of carbon dioxide leave her lungs to relieve some of the pressure to breathe. Booth couldn't believe how serene she still looked. Booth's face looked decidedly strained and pink. Parker was giggling nervously on the spot.

Booth let a huge bubble of air go, as Bones saw him struggling to hang on. Booth not wanting to be beaten by a woman, she would have bragging rights forever. And that was undesirable for his alpha male ego.

Bones leaned in and to Booth's astonishment, she placed a delicate kiss on his lips. He was so shocked he railed back and gasped, letting the rest of his stale air explode from his lungs. Bones grinned wider and watched as he surfaced.

'God! Two minutes fifteen seconds, and she is still going!?' Booth took another breath and popped under the water to her. She sat quietly, calmly, she even gave him a little wave. He opened his mouth in shock and she almost giggled. However, she did straighten her legs and swim up slowly to the surface. Booth was relieved, Parker clapped, totally impressed by her performance.

'Awesome, Dr Bones, that was awesome!'

'How on earth did you do that?' Booth questioned, jaw slack, eyes wide.

Bones swam to the edge and folded her arms over the side of the pool looking to the now, nearing Booth. She asked, 'What was my time?'

'An hour!' Parker said convinced, Booth and Bones laughed, Booth checked his watch.

'Just on three minutes.'

'Hu… Not my record but close.' Then she said cheekily, 'Beat ya, Nah na na na nah.' She prodded Booth chest with a straight index finger. Parker giggled seeing his father's pout. Parker knelt down and offered his flat palm to Bones. She grinned wide and high fived him cheerfully.

'Oh no, rematch, rematch,' Booth said, not wanting to be beaten by a girl.

'Nope, you had your chance. You lost big boy, suck on it,' Bones said, ego filled.

'Haa! Haaa! Suck it up, Bones, suck it up? Haaaa.' Booth belly laughed, correcting her wrongly delivered colloquialism.

'Haaaaa!' Parker rolled laughing into the water hearing her faux par. Sending a cloud of spray over the adults. Bones couldn't help but chuckle at the boy's obvious enjoyment at her expense.

Bones pulled herself out the water, spun and sat on the edge of the pool watching them chuckle. She loved the feeling of her heart full. She retied her hair into a more controlled bun. Booth pulled out too, sitting next to her.

'So tell me, where did you learn to do that?' They looked to each other. Her glinting eyes traversing his handsome features. Remembering how soft his lips were, and the shock that had registered on his face.

'I was in Mexico a few years ago, on a dig. We used SCUBA gear to reach the remains, I met a free dive team. There was a woman, Helen Shnell. She could hold her breath for nearly ten minutes. Incredible. She gave me a few tips.'

'Wow, I think I have seen her on the Discovery channel.'

'Quite possibly, she swims with dolphin pods, remarkable sensation.'

'Did you… Swim with the dolphins too?' Booth asked, as they both watched Parker swim aimlessly about, not unlike a dolphin himself.

'Yes, it was very moving. They're tremendously intelligent and gentle, so curious too. You should try it sometime.'

'Someday, I hope to.' They both smiled at each other.

'You cheated though, Bones.'

'How so??'

'You kissed me.' He gave her a tiny nudge with his elbow.

'That's true, however you should have controlled your breathing. Kept calm,' Bones explaining rationally what he should have done.

'Haaa. Easier said than done, Bones.' His admission sent a gentle tremor up her spine, she searched his eyes again.

'Sorry,' she said, but not really convinced of her apology.

'Don't be, I enjoyed it.'

'I'm pleased, I enjoyed it too.' She looked off to Parker, rather than his eyes. She felt his fingers caress hers between them, just the slightest of touches. She looked down to their hands, then moved her hand out from under his, then laced her fingers with his. They both swapped a gentle smile, then Booth gave her hand a little squeeze. They then looked off to Parker thrashing around. Neither one needing another word.


'Bones, I have something to tell you.' Booth began, looking back to her after a long while of silence. She looked to him slowly.

'Yes?'

'I've been requested to head up the exchange of FBI rookie agents with the Tokyo police. It was such a success when I went, they want me to go back for a while, hand hold the rookies. You know the kind of thing?' he explained softly, Bones felt her heart sink. Drop away.

What was it with the Gods, karma or fates? They just stepped closer and then it was taken away. Setting them back another few steps.

Bones could not mask her disappointment, she sighed heavily and dropped her head a little.

'When?' she asked softly, flipping her feet slowly in the water. Her skin burning from the now fully apex sun.

'Couple of weeks,' Booth said softly.

'Right, how long for?'

'A month, maybe longer. I told Parker this morning, he is not very happy. We usually have a couple of weeks in the holidays together, but Assistant Director Hacker didn't give me much option really,' he said sadly, Bones let go his hand and stood, walking off to her towel. Booth watched her go and then followed a few seconds after. He could feel the atmosphere change suddenly.

'Now you know how I feel, when you go off on your adventures,' he said extremely quietly, not nastily but to confess. Bones spun and looked into him.

'I'll miss you, Booth,' she said tenderly. He gave her the merest nod and grinned.

Booth stepped closer, took her hands in his, kissing each one softly. 'Thank you, that's good to know,' he said sensitively, delighted to hear her confession too.

'Not really, Booth, for me I mean.'

'Yeah I got that, but it doesn't change the fact that you're going to miss me. I like knowing that somebody will miss me back home.' His honesty made her take a deep breath and step a little closer. Her lips smiled but not her eyes.

Booth could feel the heat coming off her in waves, her perfume invaded his senses. His eyes flicked to her lips, slightly parted and moist. Then back up to her eyes.

Bones leant forward resting a cheek on his, whispering into his ear, 'I don't think I can take much more of this, Booth.'

'Of what, Bones?' he whispered back, feeling her hands gripping his tightly.

'One step forward, two back?'

Parker was diving off the side now, practising his belly flops, oblivious to the adults' quiet conversation.

'I don't see it like that,' he said, slowly rubbing his stubbly chin on her cheek. Bones closed her eyes to the tension it cause in her abdomen. 'We're a crystal glass… Filling slowly, drip by drip. One day, we will be full and to the brim.'

Although Bones enjoyed the analogy, it didn't make her feel any better about his impending departure.

'Interesting, I feel half empty,' Bones said sadly, dropping her head to his throat and breathed him in.

'No Bones, we are definitely half full,' Booth assured her gently.

Neither spoke for a while, resting delicately on one another, hands clasped.

'I might as well go to China then,' Bones said releasing him, stepping away. They both felt the cold air rush between them. She sat down on her towel, taking out the beverages putting them on the small table beside the sun loungers. Booth couldn't see the tears in her eyes threatening to fall. She hid her eyes cleverly.

'Oh. Right. Those bones you never got to see, right?'

'Yes, they still want me to go.'

'Right, well that's good, you'll enjoy that,' Booth said, trying to sound excited for her, but he was sad too. He didn't want to go for many reasons but she was his main reason for not wanting to go to Tokyo.

'Um, I expect. You going to stay with Nok?'

'Yes.' Booth sat opposite, pouring a couple of glasses of ice tea for them. Bones put the chips on the table after opening them. The lack of eye contact obvious. Neither wanting to look at each other, knowing that would give too much away. 'He's offered to put me up. It will be good to see him again.'

'Give him my best won't you?'

'Course, Bones, course.' He took a sip looking off to Parker, still practicing his awful diving, his belly red and looking rather sore. However, his persistence was admirable.

A pregnant pause in the stilted conversation, weaved out for a few more minutes. Booth spoke next.

'I was thinking, Bones, could you do me a favour?' Bones lay relaxed on the sun lounger, she rolled her head to look at him, mirroring his position next to her.

'If I can.'

'Ok well, Parker? Would you still? You know, see him a few times while I'm away? He thinks the world of you. When you can, I mean, if you have time?' He was rambling, it wasn't often he asked favours of anyone. That was not lost on Bones either.

'Of course! I'd be delighted. I'll liaise with Rebecca, I'm sure she won't mind,' Bones eased Booth casually.

'No she won't, I've put her in rather a mess actually. She had booked a trip while Parker and I were supposed to be away, I've screwed up her plans.' He gave her a wonky smile, Bones grinned and sat up a little, leaning on one elbow and looked deep into his eyes.

'Oh dear, how unfortunate…' Her tone mocking and sarcastic. Sarcasm from the doctor was, as rare as hen's teeth but in this case, Booth thought it perfectly apt. He knew Bones hated the fact that Rebecca treated him like a child minder or a second rate father. Although he was obviously one of the best parents she had ever met. He could be so much more if Rebecca gave him a chance.

Booth chuckled shaking his head, delighted by her empathetic stance. 'Haa. Yeah well, thanks, Bones.'

'You're welcome.' Bones laid back down, closing her eyes to the sun now warming her skeleton to the marrow. Which was a truly evocative caress, she sighed grinning. Booth watched her for a little longer than was reasonably allowed or dignified, but his eyes could never resist her.

Bones could feel his hot gaze on her. She didn't know how, she just knew. There was no scientific explanation and that knowledge made her feel wonderfully confused.

'Don't you think you better teach Parker to dive properly, Booth? Before his abdomen rips open and contaminates the pool?'

'Haa. Great imagery, Bones,' Booth retorted, loading his comment with sarcasm. Bones huffed a chuckle with her eyes closed. Her giggles rattling her shoulders. Bones felt the air around her move, she peeked an eyelid open to watch him stand and walk back to the pool. Doing precisely as she instructed.

..Woo boy.. Excellent gluteus maximus, very appetising. Whoa Bones! Behave...

She slammed her eye shut and frowned at her naughty thoughts. She listened lazily to Booth teaching his willing student. Her thoughts all over the place.

Her mind worked so much faster than most mortals. It was a gift and a simultaneous flaw. She could rarely shut it off completely. Her erudite mind flicked from one mental note to another. Flight plans, calls, e mails, coping with Booth's absence, enriching Parker, checking with Rebecca, matching dates and times of visits. Solutions to problems. Logical, rational, reasoned…

Bang! A bright white light exploded illuminating the dark, like a spotlight on a black stage. Throwing everything into perspective and answering a conundrum.

Bones sat bolt upright, her eyes wide and vital. A eureka moment born. She looked into the brilliant blue sky over the other apartments tops in the distance. They were there but she didn't see them, she shouted, 'Booth?!' She looked to him, he felt terrified by her expression. Something was desperately wrong.

'Bones, what? You ok?' Parker looked concerned too. They both stood from their crouched diving start positions.

'Come here.' She waved him over, swinging her legs over the sun lounger, taking a sip of her warming ice tea. It was quite a warm day. She mused, must be over 75c easily. Shaking that useless thought from her head with a flick of her damp hair.

'What?'

'I've had a brain quake,' she began.

'Haa Really? Not a brain wave?' he asked with gentle humour, Bones gave him a crooked pout and sunk her shoulders.

'Do you always have to correct my mistakes? At least I try,' she said almost exasperated.

'Sorry, go on.' He sat down dripping again, this time he dried his hair while she looked into him.

'Do you trust me?'

'Yeah course, Bones.'

'With Parker?'

'Yeeess. What's going on in that beautiful mind of yours?' He knew that look, that sparkle meant something.

'Would Rebecca trust me with Parker?'

'I, think so. Spill Bones, let's have it.'

'Ok… Rebecca can't go on holiday because you're away, right?'

'Yes.'

'Well, it's simple. Those two weeks you would have had with him, I'll have him. Parker can come to China with me!'

'What? You're serious? China? You and Parker?' Booth floundered, flabbergasted at her idea.

'Yes. Yes, and yes.' She flared her eyes excitedly at him. Answering all three questions in succession.

'But… I… you… And Parker? Two weeks?' Booth was still flummoxed.

'Oh. Come on, Booth, he's eight, well behaved, we get on. He would have a wonderful time. We could…' Booth put his hands up to stop her diatribe. She huffed and stilled, dropping her shoulders relaxing.

'I thought China was work?' Booth wanted clarification.

'It is, he could help. Under my instruction obviously. He's sensible. It will not be a problem. I'd make sure he was safe, Booth.' Then she sunk even further continuing with, 'You don't trust me.' She dropped her eyes, Booth reached for her hand instantly.

'No it's not that, Bones, honestly.'

'Then what?' Bones softening her tone and eyes.

'Well, where would he sleep?'

'In a bed. Well, futon probably. It's not that backward a civilisation. They have bed's, Booth?' she educated easily.

'With who?'

'Booth? I'll book something good, a twin. Most families sleep together, it's not unusual?'

'Right, right. But you're a woman.'

'Haa. Thank you for noticing, Booth, I was aware. I'll be discrete, Booth don't worry. I'll not flash him or anything!' Bones placated and smiled, realising that her partner was not saying flat no to her idea.

'Haa. Should hope not!' He took a second, then said softly, a tad embarrassed, 'I can't afford it, Bones.'

'Oh Booth, what do you take me for? It will be my treat. We could go see the panda sanctuary, the lakes at Jiuzhaigou, the Great Wall…' She was utterly excited by the prospect. Bones dropped her tone continuing, 'Besides he's a little you.' She leaned in to him a tad. 'I'll not miss you so much.' Booth let a charming smile flash across his lips at her admission. Bones gave a little head tilt, urging sympathy and approval.

Booth said sweetly, 'We better ask him then.' Bones straightened immediately, her heart thumping hard.

'Hey, Parker! Come over here a second.' Parker splashed over, crawled out the pool, Bones stood and threw her towel over his shoulders.

'Ooo Soda. May I?' he asked politely, sitting down next to Bones.

'Help yourself.' Bones nodded her approval to Parker.

'Cool.'

'Parker? Bones has had an idea about the holidays,' Booth began seriously, Bones chipped in quickly, not before Parker gushed,

'Dr Bones has great ideas all the time Dad!' Bones ruffled his hair, rubbing his back affectionately, touched by his compliment and honesty.

'Now, you can say no. It's entirely up to you, even at the last minute, if you change your mind, it's fine. No problem, no pressure, you understand?' Bones was waffling sensibly now. Parker's brow wrinkled obviously lost.

'What about the holiday's?' Parker asked, needing clarification.

'Well, Bones is offering that you go on holiday with her, while I'm away.' Parker sat upright, looking incredibly excited.

Bones grinned at him. 'Two weeks. In China,' she added calmly.

'Huuurrrr.' Parker took a sharp intake of breath, sucked it deep into his lungs, his lips parted to allow its entry.

'Yes China, I need to do a little work there but you could help. Two days maybe three, then we could go sight seeing.'

'And have adventures?'

'Sure. The Great Wall, pandas. Terracotta armies. Your Dad is concerned that you might be embarrassed, by sleeping in a room with me though. You know, a girl?' Bones wrinkled her nose cutely, displaying disgust empathetically. Booth thought that adorable of her.

Parker chirped in innocently, 'Why would I? I've seen boobies before!'

'Parker?!' Booth chomped instantly, glaring at him. Bones giggled and hugged the small boy warmly.

'Your Dad is just worried that's all, I'll not show them. I promise.'

'I don't mind.' He grinned innocently up at her.

'Parker!?' Booth looked out of his depth but Bones adored his uneasy expression. Booth could be such a prude sometimes.

'So leaving boobies aside for the moment. Would you like to come?' Bones asked sensibly.

'Oh yes! Very much. Oh please, Dad can I? Please say yes? Pleeese,' he begged, Bones and Parker waited for his answer. Booth looked at the two of them sat there, holding each other, with bated breath.

'Ok,' Booth said gently, Parker quivered with excitement Bones could feel his excitement, and hers too. 'But there are rules…' Booth added, pointing to Parker seriously, who dropped his smile instantly.

'Yes Dad,' he replied just as seriously. Bones pouted at Booth, for shortening his euphoria.

'One, Mum has to agree first. Two, best behaviour at all times. Three, you do exactly as you are told. Four, you call me everyday. Five, no looking at Bones' boobies… ever.'

'Booth?' she said exasperated, 'Enough already.'

'He's only worried I'll see them before he does,' Parker said under his breath. Bones looked down to him and nodded cheekily.

Booth's jaw dropped at the pair giggling madly at him. 'Right that's it.' Booth grinned wide, picked up the rolling Parker, throwing him over his shoulder, then grabbed the aghast Bones by the arm and unceremoniously, dumped them both into the pool. The falling pair screamed and laughed all the way under the water.


The next two weeks flew by in a haze of excitement for all three. Booth felt happier knowing Parker would not miss out on a great fun holiday. Which Bones assured him, she would endeavour to deliver for his little man. She had typed up an itinerary of places they were staying, and what they would be doing each day. Which placated both, him and Rebecca. Who was indeed delighted by the problem solved, and her own holiday plans being back on.

Parker'd, had his shots and was extremely brave. Bones went with him having her boosters with him, so he didn't feel so isolated. They went shopping for clothes and things Parker didn't have, but would require for the trip.

When Parker told his teacher at school where he was going and with whom, she suggested he write a travel journal to remember his adventures and read it to his class when he returned. Bones thought it an excellent idea. Parker too, amazingly, Booth mused.


The morning of Booth's departure to Tokyo, Bones picked up Parker from Rebecca's, and drove Booth to the airport to see him off.

It turned out that ten green agents were under the careful watch of Booth. They would be stationed in a central hotel. Nok had a house outside the city in the suburbs. Nok was meeting him later at that hotel, to take him to the less formal and relaxing environment of his home.

The excited agents sat together at the departure gate chatting happily amongst themselves, as Parker and Bones stood with Booth waiting for the last call. The agents went through but Booth held back for a while, counting them each through the gate.

Once done, he walked up to Parker, picking him up in a bear hug.

'Gonna miss you, little man.' Kissing his forehead warmly, Parker wrapped his arms around his father's neck and squeezed.

'Me too. Don't worry, Dad. Bones will take great care of me.'

'I know, little man.' Booth flicking Bones a warm smile. 'I'm not worried, a little jealous maybe. You're going to have an incredible time.'

'I know, I can't wait. Only twelve days to go,' he explained excitedly. Booth grinned wide, hugging him hard again. 'Be a gentleman, Parker,' he whispered into his ear.

'Yes Dad. I love you.'

'Oh, Parker, love you too.' He put him down, fist knocking him gently, then rubbed his blond mop roughly. Booth opened his cabin bag and drew out a box wrapped in a plastic bag, handing it to Parker.

'Here… Little going away gift, for your trip.'

'Oh, Dad thanks! Can I open it?'

'Sure,' Booth confirmed with a lovely smile. Parker pulled out the box. It was a digital camera/video, all the bells and whistles. Parker's eyes lit up.

'Apparently it's fool proof. Go check it out, while I say good bye to Bones.' Parker was clinging to his leg with elation at receiving such a gift. A grown up gift. Which made Bones' heart warm, seeing how touched he was. Parker's eyes glinted, as he walked over to the chairs and became engrossed in the new camera.

Bones stood with her fingers in the back pocket of her jeans, slightly nervous but with a sweet smile on her lips, covering her nerves well she thought. They soldered pupils.

'Be firm with him, Bones. You've got to be the parent here,' he warned and instructed delicately.

'Booth, we'll be fine. Please don't worry. He's under pain of death and torture, the poor boy. He'll be perfect, you'll see.'

'Ok. Call me, ok?' Booth said seriously.

'No. I refuse,' she said mockingly. He gave her a wonky pout. Then chuckled stepping into her aroma, instinctually they both hugged hard.

'Agent Perrotta is your FBI liaison, while I'm away.'

'Yeah I know. She's adequate, Booth,' Bones said softly, locking the feel of him away, to her secret memory store.

'Haa. High praise, Bones,' he huffed with gentle sarcasm. He felt her chuckles rumble up her torso, and the warm gust of them on his neck. He leant back to look into her. He tucked a strand of hair back into place, watching his gesture, as if it would be a while till he could do this again. So he savoured it.

Bones hands slid around to his chest, her palms flat on his smart shirt.

With work and the preparations, Booth and Bones had spent little down time together. Neither had mentioned the moment they shared at the pool, that warm Saturday afternoon. This was the first time they had touched properly since then. It felt like greeting a returning lover from a long trip, comforting and safe.

'Have fun yourself, Booth. Well, if you can. And not too much Saki, ok?' prodding his chest a little, in a gentle warning.

'Haaa. Ok. I'll be good. Maybe. Guy's gotta have a little fun, Bones?' He gave her a plead with his eyes, and quirky lips.

'Hum, Yes, well, just a little then.'

The last call broke the quiet conversation. Then the dread of separation filled them both. They felt the tension rise in both of them, it restricting their respiration.

One of Bones' palms clenched ever so slightly on his chest, barely, wanting to feel him deeper. Booth felt it and gripped her a little tighter, whispering in her ear.

'Half full, Bones ok?' He felt her nod the tiniest amount, and heard her soft reply,

'Half full.'

'Ah. Agent Booth? You really need to come through.' The cabin staff on the desk urged him forward.

He stepped back releasing Bones, offering her a tentative smile, 'Yeah right. Just a sec.' Bones dropped her head a little, looking at his smart black brogues.

She felt his finger lift her chin up to look at him. 'Funny. Every time we say goodbye to each other, Bones. I die just a little bit, you know?' Booth tilting his head to iterate his confession.

Her eyes sparkled with tears; honey sweet, heavy and almost falling. He had said exactly what she was feeling. A little piece of her drifted off with him when she went too. Bones nodded, understanding his sentiment completely. He leaned in and placed his lips on her brow, leaving them there for a few moments. Till the hostess called him again.

'Agent Booth?'

'Yep, coming.' He stepped back, they exchanged a nod and smile. He kissed Parker's head, as he walked through the gate, handing his boarding pass to the hostess. Parker stood next to Bones, her arm over his shoulder, Parker waved frantically, excited still. Booth gave a solid wave, as the doors closed between them. Bones sighed, looking down to Parker, who looked up.

'Shall we watch the plane take off?'

'Yeah. Did you tell him you upgraded his seat, Bones?' Parker said excitedly.

'No. I thought it would be a nice surprise for him,' Bones said casually.

'Cool, that's so cool, Bones. He's going to be crazy excited.'

'Hope so. Come on, let's go to the viewing platform.' Parker gathered his new camera and began to put the items back in the box, when Bones felt a hand on her shoulder, urging her to turn.

Bones complied surprised. Booth stood bleary eyed, looped his arm around her waist, pulled her close and kissed her passionately. Slipping his warm smooth tongue between her lips, to parry with hers. Bones visibly melted into him and his embrace. Parker grinned delighted by his father's spontaneity, seeing them kiss like a couple should. Their tactile moist limbs swirled slowly and deeply around each other, for several long seconds. Her warm palm went to his face and held it delicately, trying to convey to him, how touched by his romantic gesture she was.

'Agent Booth, Please, we have to seal the aircraft.' The hostess was almost angry now, definitely frustrated. Booth had insisted, once he realised what she had done for him, that he wouldn't get on the plane until he went to say thank you.

'Bye. Bye…' he said dashing off, with a charming smile to both of them. Bones let her breath go, eyes fixed on his retreating form, for the second time in five minutes.

The kiss had been brief but breathtaking. Not to mention, more sensuous than she had ever envisioned it would be between them. She felt quite light-headed and thrilled.

Parker giggled cutely saying, 'You liked that, didn't you?'

'Haaa. Very much, Parker. Maybe I should buy him lots of first class tickets.' Trying to disguise how effected she was with humour. She still tingled deliciously all over. Her tongue tasted different and it felt unusually sensitive. Which made her secretly lick her lips to savour, and store him deep inside for as long as she could.

His plane took off into the clear July Washington sky. Bones felt elated yet strangely cool. He was gone and she wouldn't see him for many weeks. He had been correct. That little piece of her went with him, and left her cold. The kiss they had shared made her heart soar. The two conflicting emotions addled her brain, as they watched his plane climb and disappear from view.

'Come on, Parker, let's get you back home.' Parker took her hand sweetly.

'Are you Dad's girlfriend, Bones?' She grinned wide without looking at him, steering him out the airport.

'Now that is a leading question, that I'm not prepared to answer, until all the evidence is in,' cryptically.

'Ok, but just so you know. I asked Dad the same question…'

'Really?' Looking suddenly surprised to hear that, Parker grinned cheekily.

'Do you want to know what he said?'

'Go on then,' she said, curious but sounding and looking casual, although she was far from it.

'He said… You meant more to him than a casual girlfriend, so no.' Bones grinned wide at the small boy. She suppressed the giggle that threatened to erupt. An ironic one.

...No wonder we are still two single entities, orbiting each other… One day we will be on the same ellipse. One day…


Bones found solace in her work over the next two weeks. Agent Perrotta was more than competant and efficient. Three cases and two solved. Not bad in two weeks. She had received an E mail from Booth, a few days after they had waved him off.

To her personal shame, she found herself reading it several times, over and over. Secretly. Not telling Ange what his electronic mail had said to her, apart from the basics. Those being, that he had arrived safe and Nok sent his respects, and hoped everybody was well.

She hadn't even told her great friend that they had shared a rather passionate embrace as he embarked. What happened between them was theirs. They had made that pact a while ago.

It was Friday afternoon, the day before she and Parker were due to fly out. Perrotta had gone back to the Hoover building, content with the progress on the last case file. Bones was just finishing up her final forensic report on the remains, and all was quiet. So Bones took the opportunity to read his e mail again. She opened the saved inbox, clicking the icon with a gentle smile curving her lips.

'Thank you, Bones for the upgrade! Totally awesome. I played with all the buttons and pissed off the cabin staff no end. Asking for every conveniece going. Double helpings of dinner and breakfast, two blankets and larger sleep socks. I wasn't going to miss a dam thing! Haaa. Nok was so pleased to see me, Bones. I think he genuinely missed me. You'll be glad to hear, he's doing much better. He has healed a little, and found a lady, Amot, who eases his heart. Which is wonderful. She is quiet and charming, and so pretty… I'm being treated like a king, and have every thing I could possibly want or need. Except one thing… You. Did that kiss we shared, do anything to you? Because I have to be honest, Bones, it bowled me over… Your mouth was so welcoming and warm. Your lips, so God dam soft. How is that possible? I was licking my lips for hours after, trying to taste you again. Feel the tenderness of your tongue's caress. God sorry, sorry, I'm waffling. I can't wait to see your eyes again. Just remember Bones, that kiss was another drip into the crystal. I pray each night, that we will share many more kisses like that one. I'll ring before you leave with Parker, on your adventure. Till then, hugs, Booth. XX'

Bones stroked the kisses on the screen irrationally, huffing a chuckle at her action. Which she had repeated several times over the last week or so. She closed down the e mail, turning off her computer for the last time for two weeks. Her excitement rising with every hour that passed.

'Sweetie? Aren't you going home yet? You have an early start?' Ange peered around the door concerned, still seeing the doctor at her desk.

'Oh, Ange yes. I'm just finishing up.'

'You ok?'

'Yes, yes. Why wouldn't I be?'

'No reason.' Ange came in with her usual casual flare to sit opposite her, leaning her head on her palms, staring knowingly into her friend's eyes. 'Just that you're taking a small boy to the other side of the planet to dig up bones, and who just happens to be the most precious person in your partner's life, apart from you.'

'Are you being sarcastic? I don't think I need reassuring, Ange.' Although Bones looked like she did a little. Ange just continued ignoring her friend's question.

'You'll do fine,' Ange said easing her gently.

'Yes. We will, I have no doubts,' Bones said surely. Ange shook her head sardonically and sat back, rolling easily onto the flexi back of the chair. Her wrists limp over the ends of the arms.

'Heard from Booth?'

'Um Yes. Well, not since the e mail. Have you?'

'Haaa. Why would he contact me?'

'I…' Bones checked, shaking her head wrinkling her brow. 'Never mind. He's going to call me later apparently.'

'Great, send him our best won't you?'

'Arha, course.' Bones flicked a glance to Ange, who she knew had a sixth sense about certain aspects of her life, and she knew by the curious stare Ange was giving her right now, Anges' mind was alarming loudly.

'Some-thing is different, Sweetie…' Ange said, tilting her head narrowing her eyes. 'You and Booth. Something has changed?' Bones stood, tucking her hair behind her ears nervously.

'No nothing. We're just the same,' she said, signing the last page of the report and placing it in the folder neatly, avoiding eye contact.

'God, you're such a bad liar, Bren,' Ange said simply, Bones sighed and sat down with a flump and a hidden smile.

'Yes ok. We kissed, when he flew off. And that's it. It was just a kiss, one kiss, nothing more,' Bones said monotone, splaying her hands and fingers out to accentuate her point.

'Of course it was,' sarcastically, accompanied by a gentle slow nod. Bones grinned, rolling her head.

'Look Ange. We kissed once, it was a lovely kiss, ok. Please don't pry. What happens, if anything, might or might not happen, is between us.'

'Ok. Loud and clear.' Ange stood, walking around the desk to give her friend a hug. 'Enjoy your trip with Parker. If you need advice, call me or Booth, or Rebecca, hell even Cam.'

'Why is everybody assuming I'm going to need assistance? I'm perfectly capable.' Bones looked slightly put out and shook her head slightly. 'I am a registered foster parent you know?'

'I know, sorry. You're just braver than me, I'm in awe, Bren. I'll say no more but wish you, Bon voyage!'

'Lovely, thank you. I'll see you in a couple of weeks.'

'Already looking forward to it.' Ange pecked her cheek, disappearing with a twinkling wave from her elegant digits.


Bones' cases were packed, her cabin rucksack packed too. She ordered a pasta takeout, and munched that happily. When her phone rang, she walked over to the hand set.

'Brennan?'

'Oh, hi Tempe, Rebecca.'

'Hi, Rebecca. Everything ok?'

'Oh yes, yes. Just got a, very excited Parker off to sleep, finally. Haaa.'

'Hum. I bet that was an effort, I'm pretty excited too.'

'Good, right, well, he's all set, bags packed, passport and spending money all in place. I was just calling to say thanks again. This has all worked out perfectly'

'I'm delighted you agreed, Rebecca. I'll take great care of your little boy, have no fear.'

'I know you will. You heard from Seeley yet?'

'No not yet. He's due to call.'

'Yes well, he spoke to Parker earlier, barked a few more rules at him.'

'Haaa. Yes, I expect he did.'

'Okay then, I'll see you about five AM then?'

'Yep afraid so. I'm off to bathe now, then bed.'

'Great, I'll let you get on then.'

'Okay. See you in the morning.'

'Yep. Night, night.'

'Night, Rebecca.' Bones carried the phone into her en suite, then began to run her bath.


Bones lay relaxed, eyes closed in near darkness, except for a few candles, that flickered warm glows and shadows around her bathroom. A glass of ruby wine in a long stem glass, gently placed and held on her lower stomach. Her phone rang, making her take a deep breath and open her eyes. She reached for the phone, pushing the call accept button.

'Hi, Booth,' she greeted him softly, she could hear the grin in his reply.

'Hey, Bones. Great to hear your voice. How ya doing?'

'Good, really good. You spoke to Parker then?'

'Haaa. Barely! He was manic. Absolutely quivering with excitement. I bet Rebecca had a job getting him to sleep.'

'Yes. She did have a little trouble. Still, it's to be expected, I'm pretty excited too.'

'I'm sure. I gave him a another talking to.'

'Tut! I know. Can you not leave him be? You're too concerned he'll disapoint you. He won't, trust him. You've been a great father and will be even better in the future.'

'Sweet of you to say, Bones.'

'It's true. So how's Nok? Have you two been male bonding with copious amounts of alcohol yet?'

'Haa. Yes. A few times, but I'm having a few days on the wagon. We took down a prostiution ring two days ago. We're just getting over the celebration.'

'Wise, very wise. I've had three cases, two concluded, one nearing a result. I've done all I can, the rest is down to Agent Perrotta.'

'Wow, excellent production, Bones. You and Perrotta get on ok?'

'Yeeess, no problems. She is much more efficient with her reports and she reads ours, unlike you!'

It was his turn to feel the smile curving her lips gently, at her pretend anger. 'Some agents work off instinct, Bones, Perrotta is more hands on.'

'Haaa. Yes, whatever you say.'

'So, anything else happened?' Booth flicked the ash off his rather large Cuban, walking around Nok's beautiful tranquil garden in the warm evening sun.

Bones took a sip of wine, processing his words, deciding whether she should bring up his e mail. Or the fact that Ange now knew, they'd kissed.

'No, nothing,' Bones said, after swallowing a sip of her wine.

'Liar,' he chagrined.

'Wha I ummhm…' Surrendering with a huff. 'I'm I that bad at lying?'

Been caught out twice in one day! Not good Tempe.. I thought practise made perfect?…

'Yeah, Bones terrible. But it's cute, seriously charming. So tell me.'

Bones smiled and said softly, 'Hum. Your e mail.'

'Arrr. Did you enjoy or did you freak out?'

'Haa. Why would I freak out, Booth? It was lovely. You said…' She paused and took another sip of wine. Booth stood still, hugging her voice closer to his ear. 'Said some really good things. I appreciated the sentiment. I was flattered, and…' she trailed off her tone softening again.

'Aannnd?' Booth urged her to continue tenderly.

'And, felt the same, feel the same,' correcting herself instantly. Booth grinned and sat on the nearest wooden stump, under a crimson leaf maple. He looked up through is fronged leaves, into a pristine cobalt sky, breathing again.

'That's a relief, Bones. When I didn't hear back, I kinda panicked a little,' he confessed easily.

Must be his Catholic upbringing, Bones mused.

'Oh, Sorry, I should have replied. I see that now, did you really worry?' Her brow wrinkling, she tapped her big toe in the rim of the faucet, seeing a drip ready to drop. It cooled her toe, as it trickled over the warm skin. She warmed it right back up, by slipping her foot back under the scented bubbles and water.

'Yes, I thought I'd over stepped a mark or something.' He rolled his head, taking a draw of smoke from his cigar.

'No you didn't, not at all. In fact, I've read it repeatedly,' Bones said tentatively, grateful he couldn't see her cheeks tint at her own confession.

'Really?' Booth shifted his buttocks and hunched over his legs, to listen closer. Her tone had sunk, dropped an octave to a seductive whisper, 'Which bit?' he asked just as softly.

'When you said you spent the next hour licking your lips to taste me. I liked that image. I did the same, Booth. It felt very erotic.'

'Umm, Yeah, it was rather. Still is, Bones.'

'Umm.'

'So… Would you like some more?' Booth enquired gently. Delighted Bones found his notes of their first proper kiss, erotic. He sat imagining her now, and what she was doing. And that, he found erotic too.

'Sorry, I don't understand?' Bones enquired obviously confused.

'Letter's? You know? Love letters?' He flicked his cigar smiling, picturing her in the bath, where he knew she was. He could read the signs and hear the soft echo of her words, off the tiled walls.

Bones cocked a brow, intrigued by his question. She sloshed a little in the water. 'Love letters?' Bones wanted clarification. This was a new event for her. She had never received a love letter before. Maybe that was why she found his e mail so addictive, and had relished it.

'Yeah. I know it's a little soppy and old fashioned…' Bones interrupted him instantly.

'Yes. I'd really enjoy that, Booth. Although it might be a little difficult to arrange while I'm travelling around.' Booth chuckled softly, making her butterflies begin that familiar tickle of her stomach. His deep chuckle, she could almost feel on her lips.

..If I close my eyes, yes almost, nearly. So want to kiss you again..

'We'll see, Bones,' he said cryptically. 'Besides, they don't have to be written always, do they?' He sounded devastatingly charming, she could see his eyes twinkle at her, again, almost.

'Don't they? I thought letters were readable?' Putting her glass down beside her. Dropping her hand to her stomach and idly caressed the taught skin under the water. She didn't know why, she just knew it felt good, and she wanted to feel good.

'We live in a modern age, Bones, of telecommunication.'

'Arrr Right,' she said finally catching on. There were a few moments of silence. Not awkward but just listening to the other breathe out and in reassuringly. Their smiles cemented. They both knew how lovely this call was. It was definitely another drip into the metaphorical glass.

Booth stated casually, 'So, you're in the bath.'

'Yes, how did you know that?' Bones said incredulously.

'Candles?' He ignored her question, grinning wide.

'Yeees.'

'Bet you got a glass of, let me guess. A really good claret or posssibliy the '57 Merlot. I'm gonna go with the '57.'

'Wow. Impressive. You're not spying on me, are you?'

'Haa. No Bones, just I know you. Your simple occasional pleasures. Lazy baths, dark, but for candles, bubbles and a glass of something warm and soothing.'

'Umm. You're so insightful, Booth. You fascinate me.'

..Was that another confession? Maybe I should convert.. Don't be insane Tempe!…

'Umm. That's really lovely to hear, it implies you watch me,' Booth cooed his reply.

'I do, often,' she said, relaxing down into the water a little more. Booth closed his eyes, hearing the gentle lapping of the water against her skin and tub. Then spoke what he saw in his imagination.

'Your soft hair is up, but behind you, trailing over the back of the tub… I've imagined you like that, for a very long time, Bones… I bet you're breathtaking in warm water. Covered in some expensive bubbles that make you smell like summer and ripe nectarines…'

Booth voice so soft and delicate, wooing her into his spell. Her eyes fluttered closed again, she took a deep obvious breath, and sighed it out just as slowly.

Booth heard and continued sweetly, 'Your skin must be glowing in that candle light, Bones. Is it tingling too?'

'Umm. A little.' Bones offered him a morsel, he knew she was, he could almost see her, nearly.

'Umm. When we kissed, Bones, do you recall how our lips parted in the same instant? Like they had done that many, many times before?'

He was spot on, they did.

'Yes,' Bones replied with a slight unseen nod and, offered her own recollection, 'Instinctual…'

'Exactly, Bones. We've done that, kissed a million times haven't we?'

'Yes,'

'Fantasies?'

This was getting very sensuous. They both knew it, and yet somehow, it was lovely and not the slightest bit awkward.

'Hmm. Yes, Booth.'

'You're beautiful, Bones. The most beautiful woman who I've ever had the privilege of kissing.'

'Thank you.'

'Sssh Bones. Just listen… Relax, let me take you away…'

'Umm.' Bones rolled her head on the back of the tub, trapping the phone between her shoulder and ear. Her right hand still circled aimless designs on her stomach, then slowly over to her abs. Bones allowed the pad of her thumb to caress the underside of her breast. Making the nipple above pucker.

'I've kissed your lips a million times, Bones. My tongue has slipped inside your warm, sweet mouth so many times, I've lost count. You've kissed me back with just as much tenderness… Your taste, Bones? It's intoxicating… It goes around my mind, driving me crazy… And when your tongue brushed mine, Oh God, I almost stop breathing. It's moist and slips easily over mine, like they are making love. That slow love that builds and builds? Forcing us to go deeper… Needing to be deeper inside each other. You've felt that, I know you have. I've seen it in your eyes, you've seen it in mine…'

'Booth,' offered breathily. Bones was lost in his narration and exploration of her body.

'We've made love, Bones. My mouth has tasted your skin. Your tight nipples crave my warm lips to mouth them softly. My tongue swirling their crests, till they ache for my hands to squeeze your creamy smooth flesh… Making love to you is easy, Bones. You're so open to me. You adore my fingertips caressing your belly, circling your cute belly button… You love my hot tongue, to flick around it too. I know you, you see. I know what you want me to do.' Booth's tone even, slow and sultry. Bones was almost there, in the place where the sand stops in the hourglass.

Bones' fingers carried his words in their path. Her fingers his, and his tongue and lips. Booth could hear her soft exhales. Knowing what she was doing. And how that aroused him. He was burning in his jeans. Tight and uncomfortable, he shifted on the wooden seat.

'I can smell your smoky heat in my nostrils now, on my tongue, Jesus Bones, it draws me down. My mouth, my fingers. Closer…'

'Booth.' Another breathy moan of his name.

'I can't resist, I'm powerless… Then, Oh God, I taste you, yes ummm. Bones, you're stronger here, richer. Uniquely Bones. You're exquisite. So slick, soft, like a rose petals against my lips…'

'Oh God, Booth.' Bones arched her back a fraction, opening her legs a little, her fingers trailing over her swollen cluster, practised and soft.

'I can't love you enough. A lifetime isn't long enough. It's my destiny to adore you forever, Bones.'

'Booth, Booth. Ummm,' she muttered breathlessly.

'I know what you need. I do it, don't I? I can't, won't, deny you anything…'

'Yes, yes.. Oh please. Yes…' Drawing in a gasp of oxygen, her toes flexing, her knees widening against the tub's sides.

'My tongue curls around your sweet little clit, I suckle you…'

'Arrrh ooooh. ooooh Booooth.' Bones climaxed harshly, his handsome eyes watching her, in her mind's eye. Her torso pulling forward towards the releasing of the spring wound tight, suddenly freed. Its unravelling sent heat and delicious sensation, out to all points of her body's compass. North to her mind, South to her toes, and east and west, along her limbs.

Booth heard, listened intently to her erotic sighs and gentle gasps. His eyes watering. He so wanted to be there. Witness her lose her mind for him. So wanted to be there with her, to hold her close.

'Beautiful, Bones, so lovely,' Booth whispered; letting her know he was with her.


Booth had to content himself for now with the mental image and the sounds of her passion ignited, then dampening down slowly in his ear. Her precious moans and seductive hums, making him pulse harshly in his jeans.

He whispered her back down off her endorphin rush. 'You know how you enchant me, Bones. Always have. I need to kiss you, so much. I ache to kiss you, it's an itch I can't scratch. To make love to you for real, Bones.'

Bones took a deep cleansing relaxing breath, 'Booth? That was… Quite extraordinarily wonderful. The best love letter, ever.' He could hear her obvious satisfaction, her raspy sexy, after coitus voice, a shot of pure heroine to his blood stream. His new obsession, screw gambling, to hear her pleasure forever more was the addiction he needed and wanted now.

'Humm. Sounded pretty good too, Bones. You feel good?' Booth enquired charmingly.

'Haa. Pretty good yes. That's a lie, I feel incredible. Where are you? Not in an office or anything I hope?' she asked suddenly concerned he might be in an awkward situation at work.

'Haaa. No thankfully, I'm alone in Nok's garden. Bathed in dappled sunlight. Sitting under a maple of majestic proportions, the colour of vibrant vermilion. The sky is the colour of your eyes, Bones. And there's a warm sweet breeze teasing the leaves, to the soft lush grass, under my bare feet. It's beautiful here.'

Bones took another relaxing breath, letting it go slowly. Enamoured by his gentleness and patience, to give her time to recover.

'Wow. Ever considered a career as a poet?'

'Haaa. No, it's just the after glow of loving you, making me all soppy and romantic.'

'I love the soppy romantic Booth, very much,' Bones told him sincerely.

'Hum. Is that, you love Booth? Or you love the soppy romantic stuff?' His heart rate halted a little, listening, waiting for her reply.

'You tell me FBI. You're on a roll tonight.' Bones sat up a little, picked up her wine glass, and finished the remnants of the sweet liquid. Smoothing her tongue along the line of her bottom lip.

'Haa. Excellent deflection. Sweets' would be so proud, Bones.'

'Yes I thought so too,' she said seriously but hiding her chuckles from him.

'Ok. So you better get to bed, Bones, You've got an early start,' he said sounding a little deflective himself. Bones sensed his sorrow, in her not answering his question.

'Yes. You're right, I have… Booth?'

'Yeah, Bones?'

'In answer to your question?'

'Hum?'

'What's your gut telling you?'

'Haaa. Have you been taking lessons again?'

'Only from the man that says he loves me.'

'Oh! And who might that be?' Booth said curtly, playfully.

'Don't be an ass, Booth,'

'My ass is cute!'

'That's as may be, but I venture your hands are your best asset, in my opinion.'

'Arh. Well, not all the evidence is in, Bones. You shouldn't make snap judgments, I have other rather large assets to consider,' he crooned suggestively.

Bones chuckled cutely, 'Haaa. Stop bragging.'

'I'm not! I'm stating a truth,' he retorted, almost affronted by her assertion.

'Oh boy. What was the question again? I've lost the track now.'

'Haaa. I asked if you loved me and you went all freaky, as per.'

'Oh yeah. I remember.' She stood, pulling the plug stepping out onto the mat, grabbed a towel slinging it around her torso, tying it up. Bones continued calmly, 'What would you like to hear me say?'

'Oh, for the love of… Bones! Now who's being the ass?' Booth couldn't help the thrill that ran his back, when they bantered like this. The subject matter irrelevant, just to spar with her was a delectable repeatable treat.

'Oh, another question? My minds fuddled, give me second to process all these confusing questions.' She grinned, knowing he would have loved that rather good attempt at humour, wit and sarcasm.

'Haaa! God, I love ya…' he gushed suddenly, then grimaced just as quickly. Shutting one eye looking up to through the leaves.

'Yes,' Bones said softly.

'Yes, what?'

'I meant, yes, I know you do, I've known for a while.' She began to clean her teeth, staring at herself in the reflection. Her heart throbbing, hearing him slip for once. Finally telling her in words, rather than with actions or with a glance or smile.

'Oh. So you're not freaking out?' Booth asked happily surprised by that, but needing to check.

'ooo do I ound eeky.'

'Haa. What? Take the brush out your mouth. That's so rude, Bones?' he chastised humorously.

'Shut up. I said, no. Do I sound freaky?'

'All these questions, I see the difficulty now.' He could hear her spit and rinse. His shoulders rose to the sound and image of her washing up, preparing for bed. He could almost be there standing next to her, the line was so clear.

'Do I sound freaked out by your declaration?'

'No.'

'There you go.' Bones wiped her mouth on the hand towel, then checked her teeth and tongue in her reflection.

'Right. That's strange.'

Bones countered with, 'You'd rather I was?'

'No. I'm perfectly content with your reply.'

'Finally.'

'So you're not freaked out?' he asked again.

'Again, no. I already said I've known for a while, come to terms so to speak.'

'Come to terms? That doesn't sound good,' he said, shaking his head and his smile reduced.

'Now, this is why, these sorts of conversations should be held in person, face to face. So there are no misunderstandings,' Bones said sensibly.

'I agree, I'll wait till I see you in person, then you can tell me you love me.'

'Fine. Are we done? Because I really need to sleep, Booth.'

'Ar ha! You fell into my trap! You conceded you loved me!'

'I did nothing of the sort! I didn't confirm or deny anything. Why is this such an issue, Booth?' Walking into her bedroom. Pulling on her stolen Boothy t shirt. When and where she managed to pilfer it from him, she couldn't recall, but frankly she didn't care. All she knew was, that she adored it around her at night.

'Not an issue, Bones. I'd just would like some feedback is all.'

'Ok, feedback I can do.' Smiling cutely; Bones slunk under the covers, delighting as the satin slipped easily over her legs. She rustled down getting comfortable.

'I thought your sexy voice did wonders for my libido this evening. I feel very close to you right now. Even though you're a few thousand miles away. I'm amazed by your intimate knowledge of my arousal markers and triggers. Which leads me to conclude that you do indeed have deep, honest feelings for me. Which, of course, is a delightful, unexpected aphrodisiac, not to mention…'

'Enough, Bones, I get it. You feel loved up.' Booth was always good at the nutshell answers.

'Precisely, bravo.'

'Cool.'

'Yes very.'

'Listen.' Booth changed tack completely, she could see the grin on his face again 'There's a nun in a bath, having her weekly wash down.'

'Weekly? Eww that's not hygienic, Booth.' Bones frowned a little.

'It's fiction, Bones. A joke?'

'Oh, right, continue.' Booth chuckled madly, Bones had to chuckle too.

'Nun in the bath? There's a knock on the door. The Nun asks, who is it? A man replies, the blind man… The nun thinks for a second, well, ok he can come in. Come in. She says sweetly… The man comes in and stares at her tits, obviously impressed. The nuns says; Where's your white stick and dark glasses? He says, no, I've come to fix the blind over the bath...'

'HAAAA!!!!' Bones roared with laughter. Booth felt a flood of warmth surge through him, hearing her laugh at his ancient, crappy joke. 'Haaaa hooo. That's so funny,' she rumbled.

Booth waited till her chuckles settled down and the rustling of bed sheets stopped. Then quietly he said, 'And you thought I couldn't be amusing in bed?'

'Ooooh, Booth.' Touched by his retrospective of a conversation, they had a couple of years ago. 'I wish you were here, I miss your face. I've grown accustomed to having you close.'

'Yeah, I wish I was there too, believe me. My erection is taking an age to go.'

'Oh. I'm sorry, Booth,' she said seriously upset by that admission, 'Do you want me to help you out?'

'Nah you're good, Bones. I'll go and, you know…'

'Yeah, really wish I was there now,' she offered sweetly.

'Haa. Ok, I better let you sleep. Have a safe flight, text me when you arrive ok?'

'Course… Booth?'

'Yeah, Bones?'

'Thank you so very much,' Bones spoke softly and gratefully for his generous spirit this evening.

'Haaa. Sweet dreams.'

'Think of me when you masturbate, Booth.'

'That's a given, Bones. Oh and Bones?'

'Yes?'

'Wash that T shirt before you give it back, could you?'

He clicked the phone down sharply with a deliciously cheeky smile. Bones' mouth dropped open in amazement. She sat up, looking furtively around her bedroom, just to check he wasn't spying via strategically placed web cam.


39,000 feet over the Pacific Ocean. First class cabin.

Bones lifted her eyes mask to take a peak at her traveling companion, sprawled out over his first class, fully flat bed. She smiled at his open mouth and the little mew that was coming from his pink lips. His hair frantic and curly, splayed adorably over his pillow. She pulled the blanket, half off his shoulder, to cover him fully. Then tucked a clump of curls delicately off his brow, so she could see the whole of his face.

Parker may have the blond hair of his mother, but he was definitely was his father's son. His lips and eyes were almost the same. He would grow up to be a handsome young man. This she knew, not just from instinct but from his bone structure. Which was, her job after all, bones.

Parker was fast sleep, after an excited early morning limousine ride, leaving DC, his mother, and his homeland, for the first time in his short life. Bones mused if she'd, had the opportunity to travel earlier, she would have. She knew what awaited the charming boy. Bones had been fortunate to travel fairly extensively in her life. Mainly because of her career. China had been one of her destinations a long time ago, maybe eight years now. Bones had fallen in love with the country and its culture then. She knew he would too.

The cultural differences would assault him. The poverty a huge juxtaposition to what he was used to in the West. That could possibly shock and overwhelm him a little. But she would be on hand to guide and reassure him, while they criss-crossed the huge country. Bones knew two weeks would only be a snapshot, but it would certainly be enough for the small boy. They had a full on schedule and several long road journeys too. Each destination would be a new and exciting experience.

Bones was so excited to be showing him a small part of his planet and environment. Something she would love to do for her own children one day. And that thought made her smile. Because although she knew he already had a excellent mother and a terrific father, who had brought him up extremely well so far. She, Bones, felt incredibly close to Parker. She would even confess to anyone who may enquire. That she wished he was of her. Parker was one of the reason she had altered her thinking on procreating. She had grown to love the little man, as Booth affectionately called him. Parker was her little man too. She adored him. They were going to have a brilliant time.

Bones took another look at his relaxed face, then replaced her eyes guard over her eye, and went back to sleep.


Shanghai airport. Evening…

The doctor and Parker arrived in Shanghai at around dinner time. After a very long day travelling. Although they had slept fairly well, Bones could see he was exhausted. She was pleased she had factored for his exhaustion, and given them a day to recover in Shanghai. Before they took the arranged transport to the dig site.

'How are you doing, Parker?' Bones grinned wide, taking his backpack helping it over his shoulders, then did the same with hers, tolding his small warm hand in hers, giving it a little squeeze.

'Oh I'm fine, Bones. Just a little tired and hungry.'

'Yeah me too. It's the jet lag. Let's find our lift and get to the hotel, then eat, shower and sleep a while.'

'Oh, I'd rather stay up a while, Bones. I've read that you should get your sleep pattern into the new country.'

'Wow. You're absolutely right. We should really stay up for as long as possible, I'm impressed you know that, Parker.'

'Cool. Yeah well, I've been doing some reading.' He grinned wide, as they made there way through customs. They cleared customs and passport control, then walked out to see their name written on a clip board, held up by a small Chinese man, in his late twenties. Who gave them a huge charming smile and a wave.

'Dr Brennan! You look so well! Welcome back to Shanghai. And this must be Parker Booth. It's a privileged to meet you.' Parker thrust his hand out to shake the young man's hand.

'Parker, this is Antook. We're old friends.'

'Hi, Antook. Pleasure to meet you too,' he said cheerfully. Bones looked to him proudly at his confidence and easy trust in Antook.

'So, please let me take your bags, the car is just outside. How was your flight?'

The trio made their way out onto the concourse. The buildings opposite, ancient and remarkable, still took her breath away. Their curvaceous roofs and russet red, lit subtly, catching the unsuspecting observer's eye instantly. Parker gasped and stood still, Bones looked at him curious,

then realised why he had stopped. There was a look of wonder on his cute features. Bones bent her knees, to come down to his level.

'Gorgeous, aren't they?' Bones whispered to him.

'I've seen pictures but when you see them for real, they make me gasp.' He turned slowly to look into her, she grinned wide, nodding.

'You ain't see nothing yet, Parker.' Charmingly delighted by his reaction to the vision before them. Parker nodded slowly, closing his mouth. Then to her surprise and pure delight, he pecked her cheek firmly.

'Thank you so much for bringing me, Bones,' Parker said sincerely. Bones sighed and retook his hand. Antook watched on proud and charmed, by the small boy's obvious moved expression.

'Come on. We can have dinner out after we get settled, have a walk around the city before bed.'

'Brilliant.'


Booth checked his watch; it read three am. He'd, had a restless night so far. He knew they should have arrived by now, and was nervously waiting for contact from them.

Booth knew he wouldn't sleep till he heard word. He sat up from his prone position, naked except from a pair of sleep boxers, rubbing his lower back. These futon's looked comfortable but with his reoccurring back issues, they seemed to aggravate his condition. But he was grateful to Nok for his generous hospitality.

The night hung heavy with humid air, strung with the sweet scent of lotus. It was dark out, no moon to speak of, and utterly silent. Booth got up, slid the partition door aside and walked out, with his mobile in hand into Nok's garden. To sit on the tree stump under the maple he adored.

Almost instantly as he sat, his phone bleeped a message received. His heart rate soared as he flipped it open.

'Hey Dad. Arrived safe. Shanghai incredible, hot and steamy. Bones took me around the city to see the sights. It's a strange mixture of modern crazy shaped buildings, and the very old side by side. Very beautiful and very busy with cars, bikes and tuk tuks. We ate dinner in the street market. Noodles and some odd looking fish. It was de-lish, cooked in front of us. Bones is awesome Dad. She knows everything! We had fun when we jumped in a tuk tuk and swerved in and out of the busy traffic in the market, going back to the hotel. That was so cool. She is in the shower, I've had my bath and I am sitting, writing you this. My first ever text message! Bones taught me how to use it. I better go Bones is out. Having a ball, hope you are ok? Speak soon, love and hugs, your little man. XX ps. I haven't seen her boobies yet.'

Booth chuckled, feeling his stomach stop flipping and his breathing relax to a steady rhythm, to match the calmness of the night. He looked up to the stars above and sighed. Just as he did his phone bleeped again. He opened it.

'Hi, Booth. Parker's tired but been a delight. Lapping up the culture. He's just collapsed and snoring! We've got a another early start but at least it's not too long a journey. He texted Rebecca too, so don't worry Ok? You can go back to sleep now J X'

Booth replied instantly with,

'Sounds brilliant, Bones, you're right, I was awake. I'm in Nok's garden, its hot tonight, my back hurts and I miss your faces. Thanks for the messages, appreciated. Text when you can. Hugs and kisses to you both. Sweet dreams XX'

He sent it and returned to his room, calmer than a twenty minutes ago.


Bones and Parker sat on their hotel room balcony, with breakfast laid out, dressed and ready, refreshed for the day ahead. The city already awake, and buzzing with traffic. People cycling, or walking to work.

From their elevated position they could see a park across the road. Where elegant regimented lines of people stood in blocks of fifty to a hundred, exercising Tai chi, facing the rising sun. Parker watched and ate, fascinated by the slow, precise movements of the silent people, performing is if for him alone.

'It's an ancient art of exercise and controlled breathing, Parker. It teaches muscle control, balance and good posture, and gives a sense of peace and tranquillity. It's a kind of national sport. Thousands, if not millions of people, perform those movements in synchronicity, for around an hour each day before they officially start their day. See that shape? That's the crane. They mimic the best attributes, capturing the movements of birds and animals. All ages and abilities join in.'

'It looks beautiful.'

'Umm. It doesn't look it but it's quite strenuous.' Parker snapped his head to look at her sipping her coffee. She replaced the cup gently on its saucer, then smiled sweetly at him.

'Can you do it?' he enquired amazed.

'Yes. Would you like to try it? I could teach you the moves?'

'Coool, yeah…'

'Ok. Not today. Tomorrow morning, once we get settled at the dig. Antook should be here soon to drive us to the site. You had enough to eat?'

'Yeah, tons, thanks. I'll go and pack up.'

'Ok. I need more coffee.'

'Haaa. You're not a morning person are you, Bones?'

'No, not really.' He was as perceptive as his father. Another attribute he obviously passed on to his son.

'That's cool, Bones. Did I snore?'

'Yeah a little, it was cute.'

'Doubt it! Bet you took ages to go to sleep.'

'No, your snoring soothed me to sleep actually. You're a great room mate.'

'Wait till I start leaving my clothes all over the place, you'll soon change your mind,' he said honestly, convincingly. He padded off to prepare his day sack and camera. Bones grinned watching him go.


Antook arrived and they signed out the hotel, leaving for the dig site a few hours drive outside the city. It took nearly one hour till the suburbs got left behind in the rear view mirror. Bones allowed Parker to sit up front with Antook while he drove, much to Parker's delight. He had an excellent view of the changing landscape, and often stared hard at certain things that crossed their path. They climbed steadily higher up a mountain road. Parker gasped often and giggled, turning excitedly to Bones, who had her feet up on the rear seat, lap top on her legs, while she prepared for the dig.

Antook was very sweet and explained to Parker what he was seeing. The people at work in paddy fields that flattened the mountain side and created intricate areas of production. Feeding many villages and communities. He explained that two, possibly three, growing cycles of rice production occurred. And the irrigation system in an easy way for a eight year old to understand. Parker listened respectfully, often asking pertinent intelligent questions to clarify points.

'Your country is lovely, Antook, you're so lucky to live here.'

'Thank you, Parker. I think so too. We are a strange mixture of old and new. We have respect for the old traditions but embrace new technology with delight and awe. That computer Dr. Brennan is using? Started life about two hours from here.'

'Really?'

'Yes. The silicone chip that sends the code to the memory, was mined by peasants and shipped to factories in the South, to be refined there for production.'

'Wow. Peasants? You have peasants?'

'Haa.' Bones giggled in the back seat, looking to Antook who grinned politely.

'Yes, when you get up to Jiuzhaigou, you will see the very poor people.'

'Oh, ok…' Parker looked rather worried by that piece of information.

'Don't worry, Parker. They are happy with their lives, you'll see.'

'Kay. Are we nearly there, Antook? Because I need to use a bathroom?'

'I'll stop, there are plenty of trees around.'

'Haa. Okay.' Bones smiled to Antook.

'Actually I need to go too, Parker.' He flicked her a glance.

'Not surprising, you had three coffee's, Bones.'

Antook pulled over to the side of the quiet mountain road. Bones got out too. 'Come on, Parker over here.' She took his hand, as they walked up the hill into the shrub and trees, well away from the road.

'Right. You can go anywhere, I presume. Me? I need a little more cover.' With a charming grin and a flash of her eyebrows. Parker giggled, nodding. 'Right you go there, I'm going over here. Wait for me, ok?'

'Sure, Bones, don't worry.' Parker watched, as she went off a little up the hill, then looked around for a suitable spot. Parker turned his back and did what he needed to do. He stood where he was, then turned to see a squatting Bones, waving him over gesturing him to come quietly.

Parker looked horrified. Scared of what she wanted to show him. He didn't want to see where she had peed. He shook his head. Bones shook her head, almost giggling at his reluctance and gestured more vigorously, pointing to the trees above her. Parker reluctantly decided to go. He walked slowly over to join her. She grinned hard as he neared.

He knelt down beside her, just as the tree above them rustled and shook a few leaves to the mulch below them. Parker looked up. Bones nudged him gently and nodded, pointing to the boughs.

'Ooooh Bones. Bears. Little bears…' he whispered to her, stunned to see two reddish bears, crawling effortlessly through the trees.

'Panda's,' she clarified just a quietly. His eyes grew wide and he grinned to her.

'Wild red panda's, very rare. So lucky to see them,' she whispered just as entranced to see the mammals.

'Awesome… They are so cute.' He sat down more to the ground, to watch a while. Bones mimicked his position, as they watched the pandas forage for insects and autumn fruits in the high branches. One stopped and looked down to them casually. It stared at them for a long time, stock still and silent. Then looked past them unafraid. Parker blindly reached for her hand, which she slipped her fingers around.

Then the other panda, jumped down a branch, and ran to the end of it, almost over their heads. Parker titled his head to look slowly, as did Bones. She felt his hand tighten it grip in hers. He was obviously mesmerised and fascinated by the cute creatures.

Without warning, the one above their heads spun and dropped a wet stream of excrement over their up turned, awestruck faces. They didn't have time to react, it hit them perfectly. It was warm, wet, stinking, and all over their faces in an instant.

Bones looked at Parker, who locked eyes with her covered in a brown stinking panda poo, over her brow. Parker was just as smeared. They both tried not to laugh but it was inevitable. They belly laughed rolling into one another.

The panda's wandered off casually, disappearing into the canopy.

'Haaaa! They were getting us back, Bones. Haaaa.'

'Haaa. Yes. We should be more careful where we urinate next time.'

'We were lucky really, could have been the big pandas! That would have knocked us out.'

'HAAAA!' Bones was off again, laughing hard. They stood chuckling, trying to get the worst off, as they wandered back to Antook. Who looked appalled at the state of them.

'Oh No! What happened??'

'We got defecated on,' Bones said simply, Parker nodded excitedly.

'By a red panda!' He grabbed his camera and handed it to Antook. 'Could you take a picture of us please.' Bones thought that very amusing. They posed cheerfully, cheek to cheek. Grinning stupidly.

'Thanks. That was so cool, Bones.'

'No, warm and wet, Parker.' Bones corrected seriously. Parker gave her a nudge shaking his head at her. Bones reached for her rucksack rummaging for wet wipes, pulling them free. She then stripped some out and cleaned Parker up, as they continued to giggle.

'Gotta text Dad. He'll love that,' he gushed excitedly. Feeling her smooth over his features, checking him for any remnants of panda crap.

'Haaa. More than likely. There, you're done.' Bones did herself, as Parker retold the event to Antook. Who seemed to be wiggling his nose, not much liking the stench that still clung to him. Bones pulled out her mobile and handed it to Parker. Who set about sending a text to his father. Parker sat next to her now, tapping away merrily, as they resumed their journey.


Booth and Nok sat in his local diner equivalent, sipping a cool glass of tea, munching his mouthful of fried chilli prawn rice. His phone bleeped.

'Bones and me went for a pee, saw red pandas in trees. They crapped on our faces.. awesome! X'

'Haaaa!' Booth laughed hard, passing his phone to Nok, who took it and read it.

'Haaa. Red panda's are rare. They are very lucky to see them, it's an omen.'

'Sounds like they're having fun. Do panda's attack?' Booth enquired, worried suddenly, his brow furrowing.

Nok pouted, 'No Booth. They are about this big, vegetarian, gentle creatures.'

'Oh, right.' Booth felt a little stupid now.

'Haa. They're ok, Booth. Bones is a clever, capable woman, you know this. She would sacrifice her life, before she'd let anything harm Parker.'

'Yeah, you're right.' Booth texted back,

'LOL. Nok says, it's an omen. Take pictures!! X'


Bones was finally at the site of the discovered remains, of the three thousand year old Qin dynasty skeletons. Unearthed by an aftershock, after the major earthquakes that devastated the provinces to the north the year before. The treasures and china pots already taken and in the provinces museum of antiquities. It was her job to remove the bones from the pit, for their display there too.

The site was small and unassuming to the uninitiated eye. Set high on the side of the ridge of eroded volcanic mountains of no more than two thousand feet in altitude. The site was of a royal summer residence. The views across the valley floor on both sides, were spectacular. Almost 360 degrees.

To the South ran a tumbling wide boulder filled river, that was fed from much further up country. The mountains had been worked year on year, decade and century, as fertile beds for rice, livestock grazing and to support a few scattered farms, and their inhabitants.

The clouds were few, high and wispy. The trees that remained, old and kept for just a little shade in the height of summer. Each paddy was flooded, and fresh crops were colouring the water pools, lime and sage green with their shoots. A few small terracotta-clad roofed farm residents dotted the landscape. A huge ox stood knee deep in cool water, munching through the old harvested remnants. Reflections appeared regularly in the pools, creating the illusion of hundreds of irregular shaped mirrors, reflecting the sky and upper slopes.

Parker took many, many photographs. His face shone with delight at the majestic sight.

'There's a beautiful smell, Bones. What is that?' Parker enquired with a quizzical brow. Bones rubbed his hair gently, charmed by his question.

'Clean air, Parker,' she said with a gentle smile on her face.

'It's lovely, and the light is different in China. The sunshine is different some how,' he said while taking a picture of the ox wading through a paddy. Bones eyes followed his camera lens' direction, enchanted by the scene too.

'Yes. I often mused about the light of different countries,' she said wistfully, 'The brightest, purest light I've witnessed, was in South American, Chile actually, in the lea of the Andes. The least polluted countries have the best light, I fancy.'

'Hum. Makes sense. Less dust particles to disperse the light rays.'

'Exactly, Parker.' She turned grinning wide, delighted her lessons obviously sinking in.

'Let's go get your bones, Bones.' He took her hand as she nodded, charmed, and walked him over to the dig site, where Antook and two other Chinese assistants, were eagerly awaiting her arrival.


All five of the them, had a light lunch as they got to know one another. Under one of those old trees. The rice boiled in a billy can and kept warm by a fire pit. Antook explained that they were billeted with a local farmer, pointing to his farm buildings. He explained it was simple but quite comfortable. Two futons, a toilet and open air shower. Parker seemed more excited about the open air shower than anything else. He was like his father and didn't mind roughing it a little. He understood that was all part of the experience.

There was no mobile reception up here, Bones noted Parker seemed unfazed by that. Which relaxed her a little. She had feared he would miss the outside contact. However, Bones delighted in the solitude, enabling her to concentrate fully on her unenviable task.

The remains were desiccated and extremely fragile. She had been entrusted with the honour of removing the possible provincial ruler, and his wife, intact for posterity. Also to finding the cause of their deaths too.

After lunch Parker was visited by a small curious Chinese boy from the farm that they were to stay at. He spoke no English but had a sweet smile, and was entranced by Parker's blond hair. A rare commodity in China. They were nearly the same age. Parker a little older maybe. His name was Tins.

Antook spoke Mandarin, explaining that Tins wanted to show him around his mountain side. Parker was delighted by the invitation. Bones sat sipping her tea, listening to the interpreted conversations, and Parker's rising excitement.

'Can I go with Tins, Bones? I'll be careful.'

'Yes, of course! However, there are rules…' she said seriously, he nodded seriously back, looking into her crystal blue eyes.

'Yes.'

'You change into long trousers and your strong walking boots. There are snakes and leeches in the reeds and paddy fields.'

Parker nodded, Bones continued, 'Put on some sun screen too. That lovely light? Will burn your skin.'

'Sure.'

'And respect the culture and people. Ask permission to take a photo of people before you do. Bow and smile when greeting people. And finally, you are to come back here by, let's say… Six ok?'

'Yes, six. I promise.'

'Ok then. Off you go, have fun.' He grabbed her hard, clutching her to his small frame, she hugged him back just as possessively.

'Is it ok that I love you?' he whispered in her ear, Bones felt the tears well suddenly in her eyes at his lovely statement and warm embrace. The words coming so easily to him. Her heart ached with its sudden swelling. Those words filling it up instantly.

'Very ok, Parker. I love you too.' She kissed his cheek warmly, he leant back a tad and smiled hard and wide.

'I thought you did. I'm so happy.' He kissed her cheek again, his smooth impossibly soft lips, smiling as he did so.

'Go on, six ok?' She patted his nose cutely. He giggled nodding, then went off with Tins to change. She watched them skip off happily, meandering over the ridges of the paddy fields.

'Tins is used to his mountain, Dr Brennan. He will take care of his friend.'

Bones smiled warmly. 'Yes I know, they will look out for each other. Parker is just like his father.'

Bones prepared her tools and togged up in her jump suit, boots and checked her kit. She walked into the tented small site, and looked into the pit. 'Right…' she said firmly, hands on her hips. Her three assistants stood behind her, looking into the pit too, in silence. Then Dr Brennan got to work.


Bones, Antook and the two assistants, sat around the camp fire on several small wooden stools, discussing the remains they had extracted successfully so far. Bones spoke Mandarin for convenience, as she was the minority language speaker. She was fairly fluent but occasionally referred to Antook for the English, for him to translate for Dim and Tola, They exchanged views, keenly looking forward to tomorrow.

They sipped hot tea, as Bones looked at her watch. It was five forty five. She glanced in the direction of the farm where they were to stay tonight and tomorrow for her small ward.

She could see them coming back towards the dig site. Smiling and waving, weaving their way between the paddys and lumbering oxen.

Parker looked deliriously happy and waved madly at her. Bones stood and waved back. Bones realised her shoulders had relaxed a little at seeing his safe return. She wasn't expecting to feel so relieved to see him. But obviously the instinct to protect the ones you love had been on her mind all afternoon, subconsciously.

Bones turned to the three colleagues and smiled. 'He's back. So I'll see you in the morning? About eight? Is that ok?'

'Excellent. Yes,' Dim said, standing too.

'Bones! I had a brilliant time. Dinner is ready, are you coming?'

'Yep, all done for today.' Parker looked pinker and seemed to sparkle all over. He was muddy, damp and had bits of leaves stuck in his hair. Which made him look totally adorable. Bones picked out the leaves with a chuckle.

'Climbing trees, no doubt.' She ruffled his hair affectionately. Parker giggled and nodded.

They said their goodbyes, as Bones followed Parker and Tins back to the farm, returning via the same path as the boys had taken. Parker never stopped talking, explaining his adventures and the places Tins had taken him to. Bones found his ramblings utterly endearing. He was obviously delirious with the freedom she had allowed him.

Bones spoke to Tins in Mandarin, much to Parker's obvious amazement.

'You speak Chinese? That's incredible, Bones!'

'Mandarin actually, but yes, a little. Tins said you have been excellent company, and asked if you would enjoy spending the day together tomorrow.' Parker's eyes lit up all over again.

'Can I, Bones? Please?' His puppy dog eyes swaying her instantly.

'Yes, I don't see why not, But there are rules.' Parker giggled nodding, skipping over a paddy dam effortlessly, then stopped to hold his hand out for her to take as security, helping her over the small dam. Bones thought that so gallant of him.

She took his small hand, although she didn't need the assistance and stepped over easily in one stride. He pottered off again, thinking nothing of his gentlemanly behaviour. Not realising how touched Bones was by his gesture.

Parker and Tins introduced his parents to Bones excitedly. They were charming and delighted by the fact that she spoke their language so easily.

The family sat outside to eat their meal, bathed in the setting sun. Parker was polite and listened to the conversations back and forth, while Bones translated. He struggled to use the chop sticks but had fun as Tins taught him a new skill. Parker took a few pictures of them all around the table after the meal, and set the camera up to take one on a timer of them all.

Finally, as the sun disappeared for another day and Bones sat chatting, sipping Saki with the adults. Parker sat on her lap casually, as if it was the most natural thing to do. Bones gave him a little squeeze for his easy affection.

'We better get you cleaned up, Parker. We must stink.'

'Yeah. I really want to try the open air shower. Tins showed me how it works. The water should be fairly warm by now. They have a solar heater,' he nodded impressed.

'Wow. Come on then.'

'I gotta help wash up, Bones,' Parker said seriously. Bones pecked his cheek.

'You're such a thoughtful boy. I think they would appreciate the help and your good manners.' Parker blushed a little, turning away to hide it. Bones talked to Tins' parents, Parker watched as the two bowed and thanked Parker in pigeon English.

'Hank ooo arker.' Parker bowed and got off Bones, going off with a pile of plates to the small simple kitchen. Bones sighed watching him go. Then went to shower and change.

She was showering, when she heard Parker start to talk again about his afternoon with Tins just out of view, leaning on the door frame casually, head down looking at his feet.

'We fed the chickens, walked up the mountain to a small temple on the top of the hill. He's got a massive huge swing Bones, it feels like you're flying. You seem to go off the edge of the mountain, if you go high enough!' Bones listened rinsing her hair out, standing in the stone trough, an enamoured smile on her lips.

'Oooo and he showed me the fish in the paddy fields. Did you know there was fish in them?'

'Yes, Parker I did. They keep them in there, to keep the algae down and as a protein supplement for their diets.'

'Yeah. We caught a few with our hands. Haaa. Let them go though. Oh and we climbed trees. The temple was beautiful, Bones. You should see it.' She came back in the room with a towel over her head in a turban, and her robe around her body. Parker now sat cross legged on the lower placed futon. Shoes off, looking up and grinning wide at her.

'I'd like to see that, Parker. Maybe tomorrow after dinner, we could take my trusty torch and walk up after dark. Have an adventure, what do you say?'

'Cool! Yeah,' he oozed.

'Ok, it's a date. We should be finished tomorrow afternoon. Today went very well.'

'Oh Sorry. I've been so full of my day, I forgot to ask you how your day was.' He wrinkled his brow, with a little shame.

Bones sat next to him seeing his discomfort, rubbing her hair dry.

'It's ok, Parker. I'm just happy you're enjoying yourself,' sweetly placating him.

'Enjoying myself? This is the best time of my life, Bones!' Bones nodded with a stunning smile, which lit up her features.

'Good to hear. So, go shower and we should get to bed. We get up with the dawn.'

'Oh! Do we?'

'Yep, Tai chi lessons at five.' Bones gave him a nudge. Parker chuckled, delighted at the prospect.

'Tins and his parents told me they perform the morning ritual everyday. I asked if we could join them.' Parker's eyes lit up.

'Oh wow, so cool.'

Parker showered a little nervously, but terribly excited to be outside as he did so. The old cranky water system worked quiet efficiently. And there was enough hot water left for him too. Bones was redressed in her warm pyjamas and robe, and slips. She heard Parker shreik, causing her to run outside to him.

'What?! What's wrong!' she asked utterly terrified. Parker stood butt naked under the flow of water, with a grimace on his face. His hair all flat and full of suds. He wasn't embarrassed about his nakedness at all.

'There's something on my leg, Bones, look…' He pointed to the black slimy line on his lower calf.

Bones took a look, knowing exactly what it was. This could go one of two ways she thought. He could freak and not want to go out ever again, or love the fact that he was being sucked on by a leech.

'Ok. Good news or the bad news?' She grinned, going with her instinct to keep things light, he looked into her.

'What is it?' he asked again seriously.

'Right. You've been wading through the paddy fields haven't you?'

'Yes. Oh… Is it a leach?' Bones smiled and nodded at his understanding.

'Cooool!!!!' he drooled, looking to the leech with deep admiration. Bones belly laughed at his small boy's reaction.

'Sucked on by a leech. Oh man! That's is just the best thing, ever!!'

'I can think of better things I'd like to suck me.'

Parker's mouth dropped open in shock at her, then giggled madly.

'Oh, I didn't mean that how it came out.' She realised her double entendre, totally flustered.

'Haaa. You're so funny, Bones. So, will it fall off on its own?'

'Fraid not.' Gathering herself back together, thankful it was fairly dark and he couldn't see her blushing. 'I've got a lighter, and a penknife in my bag.' Parker looked absolutely delirious.

'You gonna cut it off me?!' Almost jumping with delight at the prospect.

'No! You'll see.'

She turned to go but checked when he said, 'Take a photo of it, Bones.'

'Hokay.'

Bones took a photo of his leg and the nasty leech. He looked so proud of the parasite adorning his leg. Bones then flicked open her Swiss army knife that travelled the world with her, and burned the end of the blade for a few moments. Parker stood happily, videoing the whole episode.

'This heats up the blade… I pop it on the leach. Not you… Annnnd…' She did as she narrated. 'The offender should recoil and drop off. Voila!' The little black leech dropped off his leg instantly.

'So brilliant, Bones. My first leech attack. Awesome. Awesome.'

'Haaa. Young boys, I don't know. Defecated on by fluffy mammal, sucked by a leech. You'll want a snake to bite your buttocks next.'

'Haaaa Yeah!' he gushed nodding frantically, framing the leech into the drain, as it slipped away. He turned off the camera looking into her.

'Not going to happen, Parker. Can you imagine your Dad? He'll shoot me.'

'Naah. He loves ya too much,' Parker said casually. Bones stilled at his words, tilting her head and slumping her shoulders, moved. Parker smiled sweetly.

'Doyathink?' she asked softly.

'Definitely,' Parker said firmly, with a short sharp nod, starting to shiver now, as he cooled. That conformation sent her own shiver up her spine but for a very different reason.

'Rinse off. A little antiseptic cream and bed I think.' Bones gained back her equilibrium, Parker handed her his camera and did as instructed.


Bones woke in the night, feeling a small cool Parker slip under the covers to warm up a little with her body heat.

'Bit cold, can I cuddle?' he said softly and muffled, obviously still half asleep. Bones kissed his soft mop holding him close.

'Cuddles I can do,' she whispered; enchanted by his ease with her. They dropped off again almost instantly.


Bones woke to the first shards of the imminent rising of the sun over the horizon. Parker lay casually over her frame, he nuzzling her chest and humming, stirring slowly.

Bones allowed herself to savour his scent and warmth, squeezing him just a little.

'Humm. Slept so well,' he muttered, opening his eyes and yawning, stretching his little frame out. Bones did the same.

'Tai chi?' Bones offered lightly, Parker yawned again, then pecked her cheek, rolling out of bed to go to the toilet.

'Sounds like a plan, Bones,' he said huskily. Bones lay with her hands behind her head, looking up to the ceiling. Recalling the events of last evening and her late night snuggler. Bones was having a wonderful time too. She couldn't see it, but it showed in her almost permanent smile.


Five people, three adults and two children stood dressed and quiet, in a line on the edge of the first paddy field below the farm house. Facing the rising sun. Parker watched, then copied the other four in their slow and deliberate movements as best he could. Bones quietly said the name of each movement to him, when to exhale and take a breath. He was a little bit wobbly but after the second rotation, he was getting the hang of it.

Parker thought it so graceful, and actually quite difficult. More than he envisioned. However he loved it. When it came to the final pose and exhalation, all five were looking at a blood orange globe, suspended over the far mountain ridge. The clouds tinged with tangerine and pink, the fresh breeze in their faces. They all stayed still for a few moments. Bones looked down to him.

'How do you feel?'

'Calm.'

'Excellent. You did very well, Parker. I'm impressed.' That compliment lit him up. 'Breakfast now. Then you can help Tins with his chores. Then meet me for lunch at the site, ok? Then off in the afternoon but I'd like to see you at one, just to make sure you're ok.'

'Sure, Bones no problem. One o'clock lunch, got it.'

That was how the day went. Bones and her team lifting, and cataloguing the remains, samples taken and inspected meticulously. Bones was in her element, getting back to her roots. She was writing up her notes at lunch, at a quarter past one. When a rushing, flushed Parker, came bounding into the small camp, with a just as flustered Tins.

'Sorry, sorry we're late.' He sat down next to Bones, who looked up with a wonky pout.

'You had me worried, Parker,' she admonished gently. She had been worried for about ten minutes. Which seemed like an eternity, till she saw them hurrying towards camp.

'Sorry. Sorry really. It took longer than we thought to get back down the mountain. Look, I'm safe, we both are.'

'Hummm. Yes well. Six tonight, ok? If you're not back by five to, then you're grounded.'

'Oh. Right. Okay.' He looked worried. 'Sorry, really.'

'You're forgiven. Help yourselves to lunch.' Bones pecked his cheek, and he grinned nodding. His eyes lighting up seeing the lunch already prepared and plenty of it.

The boys munched happily through two bowls of rice and chicken, as Parker recited his morning adventures over the mountain to her. He explained they had gone up to the swing, flew kites and fished again. Bones spoke to Tins, asking what he had planned for Parker this afternoon. He told her that he wanted to take him to the village in the next valley. Where his school was. To show him around, and he had to get some supplies for his family. Bones nodded and explained that to Parker, who looked terribly excited again.

The two boys were like whirlwinds through the camp, running in, eating, rumbling their adventures, then off just as quickly. Parker hugged Bones hard before he left.

'I'll not make you worry again, Bones,' he mumbled into her stomach, she leant down over his head and kissed his curly hair.

'Okay. Have fun, be safe,' she told the same to Tins, who smiled and bowed deeply, respectfully.

As they left, two Chinese consultants arrived from the antiquities department of the museum, with the caskets to take the remains and her reports back to the museum. Bones was delighted to tell them that it was most definitely a suicide pact. Before the advancing armies from the North tortured and strung them up in triumph, as they had suspected.

The history of this region was well documented. The type of burial and the way they had been laid, were all credible indicators. The history books told of their servants administering a sweet tea of arsenic, honey and lotus flower. Then burying them as per their wishes, in a secret location. Bones watched and instructed the men firmly, as they loaded the steal padded caskets onto a truck, secured them and left with their thanks.

The team finished up at the dig. While Bones went back to the farm to clean up and help prepare dinner.


Parker and Tins were back at ten to six that evening, loaded with canvas bags of rice and dried chickens, strung around their shoulders. Plus a few extra items in Parker's backpack. They looked tired but elated.

'Bones! We had a blast! I met his friends from school. We played football, walked around the town, everybody was so friendly… We shared a glass of ice tea in this tiny shop. There was another temple with a huge Buddha! We spun prayer wheels and lit incense sticks… I said a prayer of thanks.' Parker put the provisions in the store, all the while she listened patiently and enwrapped, nodding and smiling. Delighted to see he had heeded her words at lunch.

'I brought some sweets for everyone, a few souvenirs. Aannnd…' He returned to his rucksack and pulled out a bunch of pretty flowers he had picked en route home as an apology. He handed them too her with a charming smile.

'I'm truly sorry you got worried, Bones. Please forgive me.'

'Ooh, Parker.' Bones was deeply touched by his thoughtfulness. 'They are delightful.' She smelt the delicate blooms, sweet and fresh. She picked him up in a quick lift and hugged him to her. He wrapped his legs around her hips, obviously delighted his gesture had made her smile. 'Let's put them on the dinner table.'

'Yeah, I'm starving.'

'Haa. You're always hungry! Just like your father.' Bones paced over and sat down with him on her lap, 'Got some sweets for Tins too, as a going away present and for all his kindness.'

'That's very good of you, Parker. Your Mum and Dad would be so proud of you…'

'Are you proud of me?' he asked shyly.

'Parker? Yes. Yes oh, yes, Little man. You're an angel.' Bones rubbed her nose around his, Eskimo like, then kissed his brow holding her lips to his head for a few moments.

'Cool,' he beamed. They ate dinner and talked again. Bones explained her findings to Parker and the family with great enthusiasm.

They all helped to clean up. Bones even let Parker have a little sip of Saki, explaining how it was made. He felt so grown up but didn't much care for it. Which made the grown ups chuckle when he, 'Yaahad' at tasting it, making a disgusting looking expression, as the alcohol burned his tongue.

That evening, after dark and a well needed shower, Bones and Parker walked up the mountain with Bones' trusty torch guiding their route. Parker getting them there from his memory of the path, trod several times over the last two days.

The white washed, small temple was adorned with a Buddha seated looking East. Parker was right, it was beautifully kept by the farmers and villagers. Parker showed her around cheerfully.

'Wow look at that, Bones, the stars…' he said, enchanted by the night sky and its clarity.

'Yes, gorgeous. No light pollution. You can see the Milky Way, see?' She pointed and traced the line across the sky above.

'Yeah… Amazing.'

'We should see some meteors, shooting stars, if we sit and watch a while, shall we?'

'Oh yes,' he said, sitting down on the foot of the Buddha. Bones took the other foot, crossing her legs like the Buddha she adorned. They leant back, looking up a the swathe of twinkling constellations in silence.

Within moments, two flashed across the sky in opposite directions of each other, burning out almost as quickly as they appeared. Bones grinned at the gasp she heard from Parker.

'Did ya see, Bones?' Parker asked in awe.

'Yes Parker, make a wish,' she instructed gently, closing her eyes making hers. Parker stood and walked over to her and clambered onto her lap, he rested his head back looking back up with her, as she wrapped her arms around his torso, holding him close and warm.

'What did you wish for, Bones?'

'Haa.' A soft chuckle rumbled up her chest to her lips, making him smile feeling it rise. 'If I tell you, it won't come true.' Bones was adoring the sensation and freedom of not being brutally rational or logical. Just being like the majority of her fellow humans.

'Haaa. I think I already know what you wished for.'

'I doubt that very much.'

'I bet you wished, that Dad was here with us.' Bones took a deep breath in through her nose, an enigmatic grin on her lips. He truly was his father's son.

'Wow. Impressive, Parker. What did you wish for then?'

'It's embarrassing.'

'Oh ok, you don't have to tell me,' she said easing him.

He was still and silent for a few seconds, then said quietly, 'I wished that you, me and Dad could be a family. You know. All live together? I think that would be pretty amazing.'

'I think I would like that too one day, but what about your Mum?'

'Oh, it's ok to have two Mum's, isn't it?' Parker said casually. Bones felt the air leave her lungs in a gush. Her eyes burned with tears of joy. His honesty zapping the energy from her and making her sink into him, holding him tighter. His little face turned up to hers. He was grinning at her, seeing her tears roll over her lids.

'Yes Parker. I'm humbled you think of me like that. You've made me weep.' She wiped the few drops off quickly.

'Yeah, but they are not sad tears are they? They're happy ones.'

'Definitely happy, yes.'

'That's cool then.'

'Yeah, cool.' They sat in silence for a while longer, until Bones noticed him yawn.

'Come on, lead the way, Little man. Time for bed.'

'Yes I am quite sleepy. Need my dreams.' Bones thought that was a lovely thing to say. Charmed, she took his hand as they made their way down the mountain.


Parker skipped down the hall of the farm house towards their rooms, Bones several paces behind. Parker opened the bedroom door.

'ARRHHH!!! There's a COW in our room!' he yelled, frantic, as he came face to face with a horned beast chewing the cud slowly, looking at him just as surprised to see the small boy.

Bones laughed madly, peering over his head at the two tonne beast. Tins and his parents came running from different parts of the farm, to see what the commotion was all about.

'Who was last in the shower?' Bones said calmly; instinctually knowing what had happened.

'I was…' Parker gave evenly, then he realised his error. 'Oh, I must have left the shower door open.' He sulked a little, looking up to Bones who was giggling.

'Haaa… Ar har. What's he eating?' Bones brow furrowed curiously.

'Oh, nooooo. He's eating my chocolate covered crickets,' Parker said forlornly, sulking heavily, seeing the box ripped and empty, the cow with brown sweet lips staring right back. Obviously enjoying the sweet confection immensely.

Bones asked quickly, 'Where's your camera?'

'Oooo, yes.' He cheered up, pulling it out from his pocket and took a picture, several actually. The Ox decided it was time to leave and remarkably backed out easily, as if he knew his way and his visits were a regular occurrence. It was only then, that they realised he had left a calling card. Which had them all in hysterics, while Bones helped him shovel out the pile of ox dung.

Eventually they got to bed with smiles and rumbling chuckles. Just when they thought the laughter had dissipated. They exchanged glances and began again.

'Night, night, Parker.'

'Night, Bones. Sweet dreams.'

'Ummm. Yeeeaahhh.' Bones rolled, closed her eyes, and fell off to sleep, needing her dreams too.


The following morning, after their Tai chi, breakfast and the repacking of cases, they gave thanks and exchanged addresses and thank you gifts. Parker was excited to move on but sad to leave Tins. He had a brilliant time with him, and via Bones, thanked and knuckled him for his friendship, promising he would write to him, when they returned to the US.

Antook drove them to a very small regional airport, which had only three small planes on its runway. Bones said her goodbyes to Antook and promised to contact him when she returned home too.

She negotiated a price with one of the pilots of a six seater aircraft, for a short hop to another airport further North. Where she had arranged for a guide to take them, to one of the less touristy areas along the Great Wall. They would be staying in a hotel this time but a smaller one than in Shanghai. Where they could get some washing done and have an internet connection. Bones knew Booth would be anxious, desperate to hear from them.

Parker was excited, when Bones said that she had asked the pilot if he would allow Parker sit in the jump seat. Parker glowed from head to toe at the prospect.

Parker sat upfront with an elated smile on his face for the whole flight, taking pictures out the windows, with overly large dilated pupils, watching the landscape whistle by.

Bones turned on her mobile back on once they were airborne. Almost the instant she did, the signal connected to the nearest tower, and it went crazy with messages and notifications of missed calls. She waded through them chronologically. Nearly all were from Booth and two from Rebecca.

'Hope the panda's haven't eaten you X J'

'Is the little man behaving himself? X J'

'Hello the beautiful forensic anthropologist?? J'

'Ok, obviously you're in the back of beyond and can't get these messages! Hope all is well, missing ya smiles. XX'

'Ok not funny Bones. Where the hell are you? Freaking out, not sleeping need your magic fingers, done my back in! Help!!'

She giggled at that, knowing it was a ploy to get her to call ASAP.

'Hi Tempe and little man. Hope all is ok and you're having fun. Call when you can. Love Rebecca XX'

Bones thought that sensible and rational. Unlike the panicking Booth's messages. Rebecca's second message said,

'Call Seeley, he's not happy Tempe. I've tried to calm him, I know everything is fine but he is such a worrier. Call him soon, for your own sakes. Kisses and hugs. XX J'

Bones moved up to sit behind Parker. 'Your Mum sends her love and hopes you're having fun. She's worried about your Dad. He's a little worried about us,' she told him with a sweet smile.

'Haaa. Yeah he would be. We'll call them later. We're ok, aren't we, Bones?'

'Yeah, we're Ok. Are you missing them?'

'No, not yet. I expect I will. But not yet, having way too much fun. Feels like I'm flying the plane!' he rambled cutely.

'I bet. I'll read the rest and get back to you.'

'Cool.' Parker carried on looking out the window, as Bones stretched out again reading though the rest of the messages.

'Bones oh God. Please woman. You two are my life, this is agony. Work is hard and the rookies are idiots! Hate them all. Wish I could come and join you. Love and hugs XXXXX L'

Bones sighed softly, pouting for his sorrow.

'It's late and I can't sleep, wanna hold Parker, and kiss you. Had a massage, back better now. Thanks for enquiring LOL. Drinking too much Saki, Nok out with his lady. No doubt kissing and stuff, lucky bastard. XXXX L L'

That one was time and date stamped last night, around four in the morning, her time. Bones whispered to herself feeling for him, 'Oh Booth.' The next three were all timed at ten minute intervals, obviously the drunker, and lonelier her got.

'Miss you both so much it hurts.'

'Love you little man. Knuckles. XX'

Then Booth's final text read,

'Love you, Bones XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX'

Bones felt her tears threaten, she looked out the window to the sight of the Great wall, snaking over the mountain ridges, dissecting them, slithering off into the distance. The Wall was a phenomenal sight, but it blurred through her unshed tears, she closed her eyes, one droplet eked past the rim and tapped onto her cheek.

'You ok, Bones?' Parker asked concerned, seeing her sad. She smiled at Parker giving him a little nod.

Parker got up and cuddled her instantly. She cuddled him back grateful for his tenderness.

'Yes. Your Dad sends you this.' Bones clenched her fist and held her knuckles out for him to tap, which he did softly.

'Why are you upset?'

'I'm just missing him a little. Irrational of me I know, it's only been two weeks. His messages aren't helping. Haa.' She wiped her eye quickly, sitting up seeing that they were about to land. 'I'll be ok, Parker, don't worry for me. Seriously.'

'Anytime you need a hug, Bones, I'm here, ok?'

'Awww Parker, that's so sweet, thank you. You better buckle up, we're about to land.'

'Ok.' He kissed her cheek and returned to the jump seat. Bones took control of her emotions, blew her nose and looked back to the view as they touched down lightly on the air strip, taxing to the far end.


Two hours later they were settled in a beautiful room, with a balcony over looking the Great Wall meandering away off in the distance. A lunch ordered and washing taken care of.

Bones heaved out her laptop and placed it on table on the balcony. Parker came out fresh from his long shower, clad in an overly large complimentary robe, which made him look adorable.

'Oh, Bones, that's just heaven look at that…' He leant on the rail drinking in the view. 'Can we go for a walk along it later?'

'That's the plan. First I need to shower and sort my hair out, it's a tangled mess. I'm just waiting for my laptop to load up the internet connection. I thought you might like to make a few calls via the webcam, what do you say?'

'Oh, brilliant idea. Mum and Dad?'

'Course. I'll be ten minutes ok?' He nodded excitedly. Bones continued, 'Oh and let the waiters in and set up lunch out here, it's a beautiful view.'

'Cool, see you in a bit.'


Booth and Nok sat in Nok's office, typing up reports from the day before, with several exchange rookies in quiet attendance. Nok's computer bleeped, he looked up at the screen and smiled, flicking a glance to the sulking Booth opposite.

'Agents, could you give us a moment please,' Nok said firmly. They looked confused but complied, leaving them alone quickly. Booth looked to his great friend.

Bones had e mailed Nok before she left, asking for his webcam system so she could contact Booth, to speak to him when she could. And obviously this was one of those times.

'You have a message, Booth. Come see,' Nok said gently.

'From the Hoover about those screw up rookies, no doubt. God, I should have shot Phillips. What an idiot,' he muttered, getting up and walking around to Nok's side of the desk. Nok tapped the connect button and got up, walking out the office. Booth looked to him leaving, confused, Nok left with a charming glint in his dark Asian eyes.

'Dad?!' Booth spun around, his mouth dropping in shock. There was his son, tanned, smiling, swamped in a white terry robe, in one piece. Parker was framed by the Great Wall of China in the background. It was probably the finest sight he had ever seen in his life, almost.

Nok closed the door quietly behind him. Booth heart rate soared to 160 beats, as he dropped to the chair in front to the screen.

'Parker! Little man!'

'Haaa. Hi, Dad. Isn't it sooo coooool??' Parker turned to look off into the distant and phenomenal view. Then back, absolutely beaming at his father.

'Hell yeah, fantastic!'

'Hey, Booth,' Bones said off camera, Booths heart rate tapped out at 170.

'Bones, baby. I can't see ya.' Bones huffed a chuckle at him calling her baby.

..How dare he.. pushing it, Booth.. Cheeky… Oh God, how good does he look?…

'Hang on.' Parker stood up and Bones sat down, Parker re-sat naturally on her lap, Bones slipped her arms around his waist just as naturally. Mirroring Parker's dress code.

..Oh yes, that is the finest thing I've ever seen.. Wow, she looks… Wow…

'Oh. Guys you look so good. You having fun?'

'Haa. You have no idea, Dad! I was attacked!!'

'Yeah, by the panda. That was a little bizarre.' Booth had got that message at least.

'Haaaa!' Bones and Parker giggled, exchanging glances.

'No Dad, by leeches!!' Parker loved the look of terror on his father's face at his revelation.

'What?!'

'Yes, Parker was sucked on by a leech,' Bones confirmed calmly, her eyes cemented on Booth's handsome stunned face. Bones' smile burned her cheeks.

'Bones burned it off me! In the open air shower! With her pen knife! I thought she was going to cut my leg off!' Parker rambled proudly.

'How, I don't…' Booth looked and sounded adorably confused.

'Me and Tins went fishing in the paddy fields with our hands! Oh, but that was after feeding the chickens. Then after we swung off the mountain on this massive swing. It was twenty feet tall! We crossed the river…' Parker rambled illogically from one adventure to the other.

Booth was totally bewildered but ecstatic to see them both. 'Bones was digging her bones up… I was late, she told me off, Dad? It was so coool. He, he, he. I picked her some flowers, to say sorry. You liked them, didn't you?' Bones smiled, nodding, eating a morsel off the lunch plate casually.

'We had a little room, toilet and an outside shower, solar heated. Futons on the floor, and then a Cow came in our room and ate my chocolate crickets!!' Booth's mouth sagged open, his eyes flicking between his son and Bones, trying to follow the crazy adventure.

Bones giggled, shaking her head watching Parker recount excitedly, correcting him softly, 'Ox.'

'Haaa. Ox, yes. Huge thing he was! I played football in Tins school field with his friends over the mountain. We brought back the shopping from the store, rice, dead dried up wrinkly chickens… Oooo. We flew kites and Bones and I are up every morning at dawn, doing Tai chi as the sun rises! You should do that Dad, it's really relaxing… Is,' Parker said knowledgably, then continued even more excited, 'Oooo, I flew a plane today!'

'HAA! No you didn't.' Booth disbelieving that one completely.

'Yeah I did, didn't I, Bones?' Parker turned his head to Bones, the small boy asked seriously.

'Yep, he did. For a little while anyway.' Bones confirmed to Booth with a delicious smile and a sip of Saki.

'No?? Really? Woooow… Leeches, Cow's eating chocolate, panda crap and open air showers. Sounds awesome. Awesome!' Booth matched his boy's deep excitement.

'Haaaa Ooooo, and we walked up our mountain to the Buddha temple, and saw shooting stars, Dad. Made wishes and we've cuddled a, lot. Haven't we?' Parker turned to Bones, who grinned, charmed, looking into his eyes.

'Yep. Tons of cuddles. So as you can see, Booth, we are fine. A few scrapes with the wild life but essentially, having a great adventure. Parker's been so good; tidy, does as he's told. He helped out with the cooking and washing up too. Tins and him hit it off instantly, I hardly saw him except at meal times.'

'Wait, what? Tins and Parker on their own on a mountain?'

Booth said looking worried.

'You shouldn't have said that, Bones,' Parker whispered out the corner of his mouth to her, reprimanding her quietly. But everybody heard and saw. Bones smiled wide.

'Yes. They were sensible, respectful of nature and the culture. He didn't betray my trust. He's a sensible boy, and that is down to you and Rebecca. Who we have already spoken to, by the way.'

'Excellent. Ok, you're forgiven.' Booth saw Parker lean forward and pick up a prawn and munch happily.

'Haa. Thank you. I think?' The adults locked gazes for a seconds. The briefest of knowing smiles switched between them. Bones remembered his messages in the early hours. Booth remembering sending them. They both knew they had to talk privately.

Parker broke the moment by remembering another anecdote, 'Ooo, I had Saki! I don't like it. Bones does. I've not seen her boobies either. Although you did see me naked, with the leech and all,' Parker explained innocently, and seriously unaffected.

'That's true, but I didn't look, Parker,' she told him, seriously sweet.

He giggled and retorted, 'Not much to see, Bones,' casually impassive, 'Anyway. How's your back, Dad?' Bones stifled her chuckle with an other sip of Saki, and more tasty morsels from the table. As Booth and she exchanged amused glances.

Booth watched the exchanges between his son and his partner too, enchanted. They were obviously relaxed in each others company, and getting on famously.

'Haa. Oh not too bad, much better actually. Got a headache now though,' Booth said, rubbing his temple.

'Oh, well if you will get inebriated on Saki, what do you expect?' Bones said with very little sympathy, she hadwarned him.

'Haaa. Point taken. You look really relaxed and tanned. How was the dig Bones, did you work it all out?' Booth couldn't believe how Bones seemed to be glowing, positively blossoming in front of him. The trip was obviously recharging her batteries, and playing mum suited her immensely.

'Yes, all sorted. It was great fun. My assistants were excellent. The remains were transported yesterday afternoon. The rest is up to the museum curators.'

'Umm. You're in the papers you know?'

Bones and Parker looked incredulously at one another. Surprised by that titbit.

They saw Booth reach for the paper and hold up the article. 'I'll cut it out and keep it for you, Bones. Apparently it says why you are over this way, and what you were doing. They are very complimentary and grateful.'

'Sweet…' Bones said humbly dismissive.

'So have you missed me?' Booth enquired, Parker replied with his usual honesty and innocence.

'I haven't, not had time to miss you! But Bones has.' Bones dropped her eyes from Booth's face on the screen, tucking her eyes away from his.

'Par..kerrr?' Bones moaned a little. Parker looked around to her and grinned.

'Sorry, but it's true,' Parker confirmed tenderly. He looked back to his father.

'Yes it is,' Bones said quietly. Booth leaned in to the image and smiled softly, Bones lifted her eyes slowly to peer into his.

'I've missed you both, so much. I'm getting a little home sick now.'

'You'll cope, Booth. Just a few more weeks to go. How are the rookies?'

'Oh don't even go there! They have been a nightmare. Getting drunk, on duty! Trashing hotel rooms. I've sent two home already, back with their tails between their legs. Phillips? I had to recommend dismissal. Not pleasant…' He shook his head, bowing it as he recalled the incident.

'Oh Sorry, Booth. That must have been difficult,' Bones sympathised, furrowing her brow with concern.

'No not difficult, embarrassing more like.'

'Yes, I can imagine.'

'Dad? I'm going to get ready for our walk along the wall. I'll text you soon, ok?'

'Sure, Little man. Proud of you.' Parker shone at his father compliment.

'Love ya, Dad.'

'Back at ya. Knuckles.' Booth put his knuckles up to the webcam. Parker did the same cutely, then trotted off happily. Bones looked back to her partner.

'Is he out of earshot, Bones?' Booth asked secretively. Bones flicked a glance over the top of the screen.

'Yes.'

Booth was off like a rocket, verbalizing his thoughts and emotions instantly, 'Good. You look fantastic. Can't take my eyes off you. Jesus Bones, I can't wait to touch you again. My head's so messed up. So fucking gorgeous. Have you seen yourself?'

'Booth, don't,' she chastised softly, but delighting in his obvious excitement at seeing her.

Booth ignored the reprimand seeing that her words and eyes weren't in agreement. She was enjoying the sensations that ran the gauntlet around her body, making it come to life and purr at her. Booth continued, leaning further in and whispered sincerely and forcefully.

'Love you, love you.' Bones closed her eyes briefly, feeling his words like a caress.

'Oooh. This is so difficult,' she sighed, twisting on the chair like she was in pain.

'I know. It's like our kiss has burned me, set me alight. I want to jump into our flame now. No holding back now, ok? This is real, the real thing. You can feel it can't you, Bones? You and me, we're it…' he pleaded with her to acknowledge his words, their desire. He could see her nodding her confirmation.

'Umm Yes. I feel it, Booth and it scares me,' she offered her own confession. She didn't shirk away from his passionate stare but gave it back with gusto.

'Why baby, tell me?'

'Oh Booth, don't call me that.' She shifted again on the chair and rolled her eyes, at the flood of emotions the endearment caused. She didn't find it patronising, not from him. She thought it felt like a powerful aphrodisiac had just been administered intravenously.

'Why?' Booth pushed, reading her body language.

'Because it… Makes me want to hop the next plane and come to you. Take you inside me.' Bones grinned wide, sexily regaining her equilibrium. Booth smiled hard back.

'Soon you can, soon. Imagine it, Bones? You, me, making love for the first time, for real?'

'I'll rip you to shreds. Haaa.' Her soft breathy chuckle, tightening his groin, making him take a staccato inhale, it effected him so strongly. 'I'll be crazy for you to be inside me.'

'God yes. Our first time just like that. Then, after, later. Slowing down… right down, yeah?'

He seeped his thoughts and the image into her. Bones was losing her battle to stay calm and in control. The whispered seductive conversation was dangerous and a little cruel for both of them. Years they had waited. Years. Now they had begun the affair, they knew it had to consummated.

'Booth. Stop. Enough now.' Bones closed her eyes briefly and swallowed. The waves of chemicals making her tingle and shorten her breath. Her eyes sparkled seductively, her body oozing her passion, matching his own.

'Sorry, sorry,' he muttered seeing her struggling. However he had to clarify something, he had to know. He continued, 'This is not biological urges is it? Not with me. Please, Bones, baby. You love me… You love me, don't you?'

He almost sobbed the words, needing to hear them, have what he knew confirmed. Bones could see his pain at their separation and her lack of clarity. She empathised with his obvious hurt and replied rapidly, 'Booth… Seeley?' Bones whispered softly, getting his full attention using his real name, stripping him down to the bone. 'I swear. Swear, I love you,' she told him with as much power and strength she could muster at this moment. Forcing those words into his head and heart, tattooing them across his soul.

Booth dropped his head in relief briefly, then looked up, tears falling down his cheeks. Unashamed at his weakness. His pathetic need to hear her reciprocate his love for her.

'Ooh, Bones. Thank you, thank you.'

'Don't cry. You'll make me, and I've cried enough today,' she said, stroking the tears on his face away with her thumb, not caring that her action was irrational.

'Oooh Bones, why?' he enquired, suddenly concerned.

'When I got your messages, they affected me deeply. Parker was so kind and affectionate. He gave me a hug. He… He wants us, us three. He said...' Trailing off, Bones shook her head and ducked her eyes from his. She didn't need to say anymore because Booth already knew what she was going to say.

'Temperance,' Booth said her given name, it sounded like a whispered secret, a forbidden utterance to her. It struck her hard, stealing her breath, 'Do you want us like that?' he asked.

Bones drifted deeply into his eyes, her reply came slowly. She covered her teeth with her lips. She could feel her heart pulse in the tips of her fingers. With her metaphorical emotional heart open and vulnerable but trusting in him totally now. Having the courage now, Bones nodded delicately.

Booth grinned wide and nodded back, at the same pace as she had done. The understanding exchanged. Sometimes words were irrelevant between them, this was one of those instances.

Booth saw her look away from him to the nearing, dressed and smiling Parker.

'Oh, Booth, Parker's ready to go,' she told him with a soft smile, Booth took a breath. He leant back a little, knowing the exchange was nearing an end.

'Ok. You better go then.' His heart sinking, it had been a frantic exchange of smiles, words and emotions, all too short, not enough time.

'Yes, sorry. We do have a schedule?' Bones said sensibly but tenderly, seeing his eyes lose a little sparkle.

'Course you do.'

'You two still talking?' Parker questioned, amazed, coming back into the picture.

'Haaa. Yes sorry, Parker.' Bones pulled him close and pecked his cheek. Booth watched on, loving the cute smile that popped onto Parker's face and the adoring look Bones gave his son.

'You two look pretty tight. You getting on?'

'Yes Dad! Bones is awesome, treats me like a grown up. I love her, I'd love her to be my second Mum. Can you two work it out? I'd be grateful. And really, really happy…' Parker said simply, casually.

Bones and Booth snapped their eyes to each other and chuckled at the irony of his statement.

Youth held an understanding lost in adulthood, where cynicism and fear are not part of the psyche as yet. Where every problem was simply solvable. Youth's innocence, a gift we shamefully lose as we age.

'Haaa. Ok Parker, we'll do our best.' Booth eased his son sensibly. Bones squeezed Parker, nodding, as he looked to them both, happy with his fathers reply.

'Cool. Let Bones get ready, Dad.'

'Yes, sorry, just one minute, Parker. Go and make your bed or something.'

'Tut. Ooookayy. It's made but…' Parker got up slowly and wandered off pouting, but knowing his father wanted him to be discrete.

'Bones?' Booth said quickly, adding, 'Half full.'

Bones grinned wide, shaking her head at him, 'By my calculation, at least three quarters capacity.'

'Yeah?' he asked rhetorically, grinning and relaxing. Bones thought this conversation had been a bit too heavy and she needed to lift the mood a little. So she added seductively, 'Definitely, lover.'

'Ooooh Bones. Naughty…' Booth drooled, waggling his brows at her. Her seductive tone and term of endearment, sent hot blood to his extremities again. It was a deliberate ploy and a little payback on her part.

The cheeky smile she gave him made him chuckle. 'Touché, Bones.'

'Haa. I've got to go, Booth. We'll text from now on, till we get back to Shanghai. Will you be ok with that?'

'Sure, I feel incredible now for seeing you both.'

'I have to confess, so do I… Oh, Booth?'

'Yeah?'

'Shave. You look rakish and sexily cute to me… However, a little too slovenly for the Japanese sensibilities.'

'Haa! You're one in six billion, Bones. Thanks for the tip,' he said un-offended.

'You're welcome. I've got to go.'

'Kisses.' He smiled wide, puckering his lips and blowing her one.

'Bye.'

'Kiss the little man for me.'

'Count on it.' Bones hit the close button. Shut the computer down and walked into the bedroom, to see Parker all ready to go, rucksack on his back. Camera in his palm, checking out his snap shots.

'Five minutes, Parker just five.' Bones roughed up his hair, as she prepared for the afternoon.


Booth got a text later that evening, while Nok and he went out to a karaoke bar to celebrate seeing Parker and Bones. He was so much happier, he'd cleaned up and felt elated. Bones had told him she loved him. And he had a promise of tomorrow, and the next day after that, and on and on.

'Wall amazing, views spectacular, dinner with local family who look after this bit of the wall. People are so friendly! It helps that Bones is a genius and speaks Mandarin! She has no fear. Got back really late to hotel. Bed now, sweet dreams. Knuckles, Parker. XX'

Booth smiled as he settled down to his bed, his head a little fuzzy, his ears ringing from the loudness of the music in the club. As he settled down to sleep, his phone bleeped. He flicked it open to read,

'So good to see you. I feel incredible after saying those words for the first time. I'm released. In the final examination, they felt so natural to say. Sweet Bones dreaming. XX J'

Booth smiled and slept deep and long, for the first time in three days.


The following morning, the pair dressed and walked up to the wall just before dawn, then they faced East and began their exercise ritual. Parker had made remarkable progress and didn't wobble when he did the crane now, Bones noted. He was centring his core and finding his natural balance. Bones explained her observations to him after, as they meandered the other way along the wall from last night, towards a turreted watch post. Parker seemed to be delighted by hearing her compliment at his obvious improvements. He felt a sense of pride but tried to hide his sin. Bones thought it exceedingly sweet.

They sat on the top of the castle-like tower, and ate their packed breakfast, arrange by the hotel.

The hotel was elegant, picturesque, and spectacular. Set on a ridge south of the Wall, surrounded by a lush forest which covered the surrounding hills and was dramatic in its location. Although Parker was a little young to really appreciate its décor, of course Bones did.

The ancient objects, vases and art. The minimalist décor spliced with opulent fabrics and silks. For they were on the silk road. The route that carried fine fabrics all over the world, from ancient times.

After breakfast Bones led him on into the next village renown for silk production. They visited a silkworm farm and were taken around. Parker was absolutely fascinated. He had no idea that silk was a natural fibre made from the cocoons of caterpillars which turned into moths. She explained to him the process simply. He took some excellent photos of the creatures and was allowed to handle a few worms.

Parker was delighted by the secret Chinese technique of making silk, that was kept from the world for decades, under pain of death if anyone revealed the secret of the remarkable worms. The man that showed them around was extremely old, wrinkly, looked frail, slow, and was about the height of Parker.

Parker whispered to Bones that he thought he was the oldest man he had ever seen, with a wondrous expression. Bones chuckled and asked the man his age, explaining the boy's curiosity.

He was very generous in his reply to Bones, who bowed respectfully and smiled, thanking him for his candour.

'Hinto says, he was born in the year of the snake, Parker. In the summer.' Parker looked puzzled. Bones continued, 'At my reckoning he is around one hundred and four.' Parker's jaw dropped, his eyes wide in wonder.

'And he is still working? That's amazing, Bones. What's his secret?' Bones grinned and asked sweetly of Hinto. Who giggled and told her rather proudly,

'He says, Tea, rice and Tai chi at five every morning.'

'Oh wow, that is so cool. He still does that? Hinto must be so fit!' Parker gushed astounded, then continued, 'Could you tell him, I think he is fantastic, and wish him another hundred years.'

'Haaa ok.' Bones did as instructed, Parker watched as the old man chuckled. Hinto gently took Parker's hand and led him through the workshop. Which was full of mulberry bushes and cocoons at various stages of production, towards a small shop.

It was strung up with silks of all colours and designs. Parker gasped at the fine fabrics and other painstakingly prepared items. Hinto shuffled over to a few small rugs in a neat pile. Then to Parkers delight and astonishment. Hinto picked one out, then suddenly flung it into the air above their heads, with a graceful flick of his wrist.

The rug spun and floated to the ground as if defying gravity, resisting the natural force. Then it slipped silently to the russet terracotta flagged floor.

'Oooh. Wow. Incredible. It's like magic, Bones?' Parker picked up the rug reverently and inspected it with fascination. Delighting in its softness and extraordinarily lightness. Hinto smiled warmly to Bones and spoke. Bones nodded and bowed respectfully.

'Hinto says it's a Tai chi mat. And it's yours, a gift for you, for your respect of a old man.'

'Oh, Bones.' Parker looked close to tears at the generous gift. 'How do I say thank you to, Hinto?'

'You say thank you by, bowing low and slowly, accepting the carpet from his hands, bow again,' Bones whispered the mandarin for thanks in his ear. Which Parker recognised, as he had heard her say that word a few times. Parker nodded, understanding.

Hinto was carefully rolling the carpet and wrapping it up in brown paper. He secured the roll with a strip of green mulberry reed, tying a bow and then adorned the bow with sprig of mulberry leaves.

Parker accepted the roll from the old man with great respect, bowing as Bones had instructed him to do. Parker spoke the word perfectly and heartfelt. Hinto was obviously enchanted with his effort.

Bones took a photo of the ancient man and Parker holding his gift as if it was a precious fragile baby. Then she picked out a cummerbund for Booth and bought that, while Parker looked around at the books about silk production. They left with smiles and waves, and bows of thanks.

'Wow, Bones that was awesome.'

'Yeah pretty awesome. Let's have tea,' Bones urged, feeling thirsty. It was a warm morning.

On the way back, Parker took more pictures of them on the wall. Setting up his shots like a true professional photographer. Bones thought he was getting much better at taking his photos, the more used to the camera he got. It certainly was an excellent idea of Booth's, she mused.

After lunch at the hotel, Bones asked Parker to put some trunks on under his trousers because they might get wet that afternoon. Parker was intrigued by her request, but she refused to tell him what she had planned for them.

The sun was high and hot. Parching everything it touched. Even the birds seemed to be taking a respite from it, snoozing in any shade they could find.

'It's so hot today, Bones,' Parker said pulling on a clean t shirt and baggy swim shorts.

'Yep. But I bet we get a storm tonight. You can feel the humidity rising.'

'Yeah, I love storms.'

'Me too. Right, you ready?'

'Yep.' Bones told him just to bring his camera, not his day sack. But Bones took hers. Parker noticed she had a secret smile on her features. She was obviously looking forward to whatever she had planned for them that afternoon.

They went down to the reception, to find a young handsome man waiting for them. He introduced himself as Bo Sin, but instructed them to call him Tim. He was about twenty five and fit, with a trendy hair cut. Which was a little out of place after the last few days, and the people they had met. Parker thought Tim was really cool, and he spoke excellent English.

'So, Park where are you from?' Very casually and a twang of American in his voice.

'America,' he said simply, Tim and Bones giggled, that part was obvious.

'Haa. I meant whereabouts in the US?'

'Oh, Washington DC.'

'Cool city, I loved Chicago.' Tim turned on the engine of the jeep and sped off down the road. The open topped vehicle was a welcome treat to a closed off car, as the heat of the day was stifling and oppressive. The rush of the air that passed through the vehicle was a welcome relief. Bones put on his seat belt, then her own, flicking out her sunglasses and relaxing back in the seat, arm loose over the car side. She stored the magnificent view away, wishing Booth was with them to see it.

'You've been to the US then?'

'Oh yeah, all over. Colorado mainly with my job. Where I learnt my trade.'

'Oh and what is your trade?' Parker asked inquisitively, making easy conversation with Tim. Tim looked to Bones for permission, who smiled and nodded for him to tell him.

'I'm an instructor. Canoe instructor.'

'OH! Are we going canoeing, Bones?' Parker jiggled on his seat excitedly. She flared her eyes to him. 'Oh man! This is awe... some! If I forget to tell you later. Bones,' he rumbled excitedly. 'I think you're the best and I love you so much.'

'He's easily pleased,' Tim said sweetly to Bones, who was beaming, delighted Parker was up for another adventure.

'I met Tim a few years ago, Parker. When I was taking a trip to the Grand Canyon. We met while we white water rafted down the Colorado River. When I knew we were coming over here, I gave Tim a call and set up this. Now… Usually children of your tender years are not permitted to raft because it can be quite dangerous. But Tim here, is an expert and has just the place for you to learn the skills involved. We'll be canoeing down this river for several miles. Then rafting over some small falls. We're lucky the storm is coming later, and wasn't last night because if it rains hard up stream, we wouldn't be able to tackle the rapids while the river is at full force. There are rules, Parker and you must do everythingTim and I tell you. To the letter, do you understand?' Bones explained seriously but a smile glinted in her eyes and hung on her lips. She was terribly excited too.

'Yes, Bones,' sensibly.

'I know it's exciting but you must listen ok?'

'I promise. I need a pee, Bones. I'm so excited,' virtually squealing, Bones looked to Tim, who pulled up sharply beside the deserted road. A cloud of dust flew past them on the breeze, released by the jeep's tires. It dried their mouths and made their tongues feel gritty.

'Pee anywhere, Park.'

'Ok. Last time we did this, we got crapped on by pandas, didn't we, Bones?' he said cheerfully, as he exited the car and ran to the nearest tree. Bones giggled.

'Haaa. Yeah we did, Tim. So, you all set up? Camp and everything?' Whispering the last part of her sentence so Parker couldn't hear.

'Got the spot all set up. We'll pitch the tents later,' he said just as quietly.

'Excellent.' Parker was back seated and buckled, beaming. They set off again. It was only another half an hour's drive.

They weaved over the river many times, staying close to it. Parker noticing it started quite narrow and shallow, the further they went it widened and grew deeper and more azure. The vegetation got thicker and more lush. The trees and bamboo creaked and groaned, serenading their progress.

Tim pulled off the tarmac road onto a dusty unmade track. They bumped along the track for a mile or so, till they came to a clearing. Where there were two large, three man orange canoes, loaded and prepared to go. The river ran gentle and quiet beside them, the surface swirled and twinkled in the scorching sunlight. Which was dappled by the over hanging branches of pine, elm and willow. The entry point was beautiful and tranquil. Parker was twitching to get going and was out the jeep first, taking his pictures. While Bones helped Tim stow away her rather hefty rucksack.

She got Parker to change into his water proof crocs and plastered him with sun cream, putting the remnants on her palms, over her nose and cheeks. She tied her hair up, as Tim came over with three life vests.

'Right safety first, Park,' he began sensibly. 'Life vests. They are buoyancy aids, they have to be tight, I'm afraid, they don't inflate but just keep you up. If you go in? Relax, don't panic, let the water take you. Tempe or me will get to you, ok? We're strong swimmers. The canoes are virtually unsinkable. So, if you can stay with them, ok?'

'God yes, I don't intend to go in.'

'Haa. Cool. And helmets, for later. We don't need them for the first part. You can take pictures but remember when I say paddle, you paddle. You stow the camera, ok? Or you might lose it.'

'Oh. Right, don't want to lose it,' he pouted cutely.

'Now. Here you go, you're all set.' He encased and tightened the jacket on Parker and checked the helmet on him. Bones was already togged up and stripped down to a costume and short-shorts. 'This is your paddle. Hold it like this and don't lose it.'

'Ok,' Parker said, rather terrified now. Bones gave him a hug and kissed his face fast and flared her eyes.

'Ready?'

'Yeah, let's go,' Parker said, pupils dilated and twinkling. Tim put Parker in the canoe in the rear seat. Bones launched hers and jumped in settling down. Then pushed off from the gravelly bottom of the river with her paddle. She paddled out into the flow and waited for the boys. Parker thought she looked like a professional the way she controlled the large canoe. She was beaming wide and looked totally stunning, like a painting, Parker thought. He grinned hard at her, as Tim jumped in and settled.

They cruised down the river, Tim showing Parker how to paddle properly, explaining how to hold the paddle and relax his arms and stroke. Bones thought he was a natural and told him so. He lit up. They stopped regularly, so Parker could take photos of the river, Bones and the scenery, which was spectacular.

They passed through ravines and canyons, the river getting faster and stronger, the longer they went on. After one bend in the river, a waterfall splashed down the narrow canyon into the river. The spray escaped the fall and with the sun rays through it created a rainbow. It was beautiful. Parker spent several moments videoing the sight, mesmerised by it.

'This is brilliant, Bones,' he said reverentially.

'Yes, it's beautiful and cooler on the water too,' said although she perspired, beads of sweat pooled in her cleavage. 'I'm burning up actually.'

'There's a place we can have a swim if you like, and a drink. We should drink,' Tim told them sensibly.

They stopped, dragged the boats up onto a sandy beach. Bones walked right back in and dived into the water, popping up and smiling.

'Whoo! So much better. Come in, Parker, leave your life jacket on though.' He did as instructed, ooo and arh-ing, as the cold water rose further up his body, as he tip toed in.

'Haa! Chicken. You're prolonging the agony, just dive in!' Bones egged him on. Parker did, squealing at the shock to his system. Beaming as he surfaced, swimming over to Bones and straight into her arms, wrapping his arms around her neck, and squeezing her hard.

'Ooo lovely hug, thank you,' she said, peering into his watery face. Loving his affection and delighted he was enjoying the holiday.

'My mum would never do this kind of holiday, Bones… She just sits on a sun bed all day. Ignoring me…' Parker told her his secret, as if it was shameful thing to tell.

'Oh, Parker. I'm sorry for that, but some people work so hard, they just want to relax when they have time off,' she said trying to be diplomatic.

'I know. It's ok. But I just thought you should know how much this means to me. What you're doing for me, I really think you're wonderful.'

'Thank you, Parker, and you're welcome. Come on, Little man. Let's have a drink and text your Dad.'

'Oh, not yet, he can wait.' Parker swam about for a while, as Bones watched, floating on her back, closing her eyes to the broiling sun.

They swam out to the shallows and walked up the beach, where Tim was pouring chilled tea from a large plastic gallon bottle.

'Wow, that's a lot of ice tea, Tim?' Parker thought it way too much for an afternoon on the river.

'Yes, well, you have to be prepared, Parker.' Tim flicked a glance to Bones who grinned, secretly knowing that was supposed to last them till tomorrow morning, at least.

Bones stripped off her life vest and shorts, putting them on a rock beside the river in the sun to dry off a little. They all sat on the sand talking about the next part. Tim told them that after about a mile or so, the river would start to drop and that was where it got bumpy and the rapids were. Parker listened intently, munching his biscuits rashly, leaving crumbs over his lips, that Bones wiped away naturally.

They packed up and continued down the river. Parker could feel and see the water getting more bumpy. He could feel his excitement grew but also his apprehension. It was a strange mixture of emotions which he liked the sensation of. He could hear a rushing sound, and it got louder and louder.

'What's that sound, Tim?'

'The rapids.'

They drifted around the corner and Parker's heart rate shot up suddenly. The river twirled and bounced, white waves reversed and splashed over rocks and boulders in the water.

'Oh. jeeze,' he said quietly, a little scared. Bones paddled close and reached for their boat, holding the two craft together. Tim looked around to him with a cheeky smile.

'Parker, it looks scary but you know how matches float on water?' Bones said reassuring him.

'Yeah.'

'Well, we are the matches, the water will just take us over. Shall I?' She looked to Tim, who nodded, grinned wide, then gestured towards the rapid with his paddle. Letting her go first to show Parker, and ease him a little.

'See you in a bit.' Bones leant over and kissed Parker's cheek. 'Woohoo!' Bones paddled off at a rate of knots, as Parker watched mouth open. As she flew over the water and bumbled down the rapid effortlessly, the paddle horizontal over her head. 'Woooo!' she shouted as she went. Parker giggled seeing her safely over the other side.

'Like a fairground ride, Parker!' she yelled back.

'Coool! Let's do it, Tim,' he said, fearless now. Tim nodded.

'Ok, Park. Paddle, then put it up over your head like, Bones ok? Stow your camera in the box.'

'Kay.' He did, then they were off.

It was only a little rapid, short and quick but an excellent opener for him. Bones watched, her heart pounding, as they came floating over the rapid, Parker's face a picture of sheer elation.

'I did it! Oh how cool. Again, again!' he ranted, obviously the adrenalin kicking his excitement up another notch.

'Yep plenty more to go, Park. Great job I've got, haven't I?' Tim said idly.

'Oh the best, Tim!' Deciding instantly, this was what he wanted to do for the rest of his life too.

Each rapid got slightly bigger and longer and more angry. Parker getting more and more confident, as they went on and on down the river. Parker relished every rapid, the longer the better. Squealing and woohoo-ing over them all. Bones was delighted by his obvious enjoyment. Feeling her heart swell, deciding that she had prepared the trip quite well.

'Last one before we stop again, Park. This one is rough. We are going to start down the right side, see that big boulder?'

'Yeah.'

'Well, we shouldn't hit it, Ok?' Tim told him fairly seriously.

'Oh right. Got ya,' Parker confirming he understood.

'So… When I say back paddle, you back paddle, like you life depends on it ok?'

'Got it. Will Bones be ok on her own?' he enquired, concerned for his second mum.

'Haaa. Park. Dude… That, there woman? Went down a category 7, in a canoe half that size, alone! She's a pro, don't worry, she'll be fine.'

'Ok. What category is this one?'

'Five max, probably a four really.'

'Coool. My dad is gonna be so impressed,' he muttered cutely.

'Haaa.' Bones heard his excited squeal and paddled over saying, 'Right, I'll go and you remember, Parker. Relax, ok?'

'Don't worry, Bones. Just you be careful.'

'Kay, see you on the other side.'

The roar and turmoil of the water was extreme. It looked to Parker as if it was boiling and extremely angry. The boys watched as Bones blew Parker a kiss, then paddled deep and hard, positioning herself for her run. She whooped again as she went over the broiling waves, getting splashed and tossed around. Bones neared the boulder, powered a back paddle and twisted the bow ninety degrees, and slipped over the next stretch. Hit another turbulent area bouncing around at the mercy of the waves. Parker saw her working hard on the right side of the canoe, seeming to stand still for a while. Then, finally tossed the rest of the rapid. It was definitely the hardest, longest and most turbulent one so far.

'Wow. Tough one,' Parker said, impressed by her skill.

'Yep, you ready?'

'Go for it, Tim.'

They set off hitting the rapid hard. 'Paddle right, right!' Tim shouted over the roar of the water, getting a mouthful for his trouble.

'Left, left, left!' Parker was doing precisely as instructed, looking at the boulder nearing fast, looming large. Bones watched from below, her position flat across the river, as Tim and Parker paddled hard in unison. Parker was having a ball in a measured way, concentrating on his paddling but enjoying the ride too.

'Back paddle… That's it… Back… BACK! SHIT! BACK!' They neared the huge boulder, the heavier canoe harder to control. Parker could almost touch the grey mass with his paddle, Tim did and pushed off it hard. The stern of the canoe got caught in the eddy, and bounced harshly, the canoe hitting the boulder, scraping the side making a horrible crunching sound.

'LEFT! LEFT!' Tim hollered, unfortunately Parker had no defence against the violent tossing of the canoe, and the broiling water which was swamping the canoe. A small boy's weight no match for the turbulence.

Parker bounced high and left the canoe, as if in slow motion, flipped high into the air, then splashed into the raging furious white water.

Bones saw it happening, a sense of dread whacked her stomach. She pounded closer to the rapid, as Tim could do nothing but go with the flow.

Parker popped up a second or so later, oar still in hand and slipped over the chaotic white water feet first, he looked like a floppy manikin.

'Shit, shit…' Bones muttered, as she waited for him to come out the disorder.

'RELAX! PARKER!' she yelled. When he neared her canoe, Bones grabbed him by the scruff of his life vest and hauled his floppy frame onto her legs. Parker spluttered and looked up to her, she looked terrified.

'Parker!? Oh, God, you ok?! Taking the paddle off him.

To her amazement he smiled, then started to laugh. 'HAAA!! That was AWESOME!! Again, again!!' he rattled, pupils dilated and twinkling, kicking his legs with excitement.

'Haa! Parker, you maniac. You're an adrenalin junky! You ok?'

'Yeeesss fine. I relaxed and just floated. It was BRILLIANT! I didn't lose the paddle? Wait till I tell Dad,' he blabbed, impressed with his performance.

'Oh. No! Please don't. He'll never let you out again, ever.' Bones was paddling to the shore, as Parker lay at right angles to the boat, his legs and arms either side of the canoe. Chuckling, he sat up a little seeing Tim shaking his head and joining them. Parker got up and stood on the sand, hands on hips. Bones grabbed him tight, falling to her knees bear hugging him.

'Are you really ok?' Bones was checking his limbs for breaks and scratches.

'Haaa. Yeah, Bones. Can I do that again? Can I?' Bones looked stunned into his eyes.

'Ha. You're amazing, Parker, I thought you'd be all freaky.'

'Nah, Bones,' charmingly. 'It was an amazing experience.' Tim was next to him, looking down.

'You fancied a swim then?' he said rather amused, his hand on the boy's shoulder, Parker looked up and chuckled.

'Yeah. Oh that was so gooood. Did you see how high I went?' Bones looked to Tim and shook her head incredulously. The grown ups exchanging amused glances, at their wards post trauma delirious stupor.

'He's just like you, Tempe. Remember that time?' Bones gave Tim a warning glare, standing up.

'Don't tell him. He'll wanna try it,' Bones warned sweetly.

'Oooo. Try what? Tell me. What did Bones do?' Excited, intrigued to hear.

'Maybe later, Little man. Let's set up camp first,' Bones deflecting him sensibly.

'Oh man! Are we camping?'

'Yep.' Parker grabbed Bones around the hips and kissed her belly many times, overjoyed. Bones reached down and picked him up sitting him on her hip, looking into him.

'I'm so proud, Parker and I love you,' she said taking off his helmet, kissing his brow hard. He shone, positively radiating smiles and delight.

'Love you too, Bones, Mum…' Bones closed her eyes at hearing him call her that, feeling her emotions erupt and pour into her eyes.

'Oh, Parker.' She clutched him hard, he squeezed back just as fiercely. She mused inwardly,

So this was what it feel like to be a mother…

'I'm starving,' he said simply.

'Me too.' Pecking a kiss to the end of his nose, she let him go, ruffling his damp hair.

The pop up tents were a hit with Parker. He explained the last time he camped, it took his Dad hours to sort out the guide ropes. Telling them casually that his father had sworn a lot at the time.

Bones and Parker went off to get wood for a fire, coming back with armfuls. Parker spent most of the late afternoon reliving his day narrating his adventure. How he felt, how cold the water was, how he remembered to relax and hold on to the paddle. He was obvious so proud of himself. Especially as he had remembered the instructions and done as he was told.

They sat on sponge mats around the fire as the night fell. Small monkeys hopped about in the trees around them, watching for food scraps, and the opportunity to pilfer.

Tim had brought food, drink and sleeping bags, although they probably wouldn't need them because it was a sultry night. They could hear the storm gathering in the distance, with the rumble of thunder signalling its presence.

Parker took more pictures and ate like a horse. Tim handed Bones a beer, as Parker asked her to please tell him a story of her previous adventure. She relented and spent the next hour recounting her adventure with Tim. He listened, laughed and enjoyed every moment. Bones was relaxed, casual and humble, about her daring body surfing of a category six in the Colorado River. Tim told of his adventures too, which fascinated Parker no end.

Bones checked her phone, there would be no chance of a message or call tonight, there was no signal in this valley. She was pleased when

Parker said he didn't care anyway.

The toilet tent was fun. Parker thought the tree they had picked out and tied a hanky to, was really funny. It started to spot with rain around ten o'clock. With big heavy rain drops, which padded and shifted the sand into craters like on the moon.

It was time to sleep anyway. Bones had brought two t shirts for them, preferring to travel light. She gave Parker one to wear, it swamped him but made him look so cute, like he was wearing a short dress.

'This is Dad's, isn't it?'

'Yes, I have acquired several of your father's T shirts,' she explained sensibly, but Parker knew she meant, she had borrowed them permanently. And was uncaring of her breaking a commandment.

'Haaa. You're such a rebel, Bones.'

'I know. He's got scores. He'll not miss these two.'

'The storm is getting closer,' he said sweetly.

'Yes. Are you worried?' Bones settled down into her sleeping bag.

'Nah. Might get noisy though.'

'Yes, maybe we should try to get to sleep.'

'Yep, I'm really tired.' Parker yawned hard and said good night, kissing her cheek then snuggling down instantly. Bones knew he was asleep in moments by the little mews he was making. They made her smile and her womb throb, as if full of life. Before she realised, she was blotto too.


Bones and Parker leapt from their slumber as a huge deafening clap of thunder, and blinding white light crackled around their heads. They looked to each other, stock still for a few moments, then gave each other matching, closed mouth wide smiles. The rain hammering the tent, as if it wanted the flatten it. The roar of the rapid, drowned out by the cacophony of the storm.

'Shall we take a peek?' Bones said, childlike. Parker giggled, scrambling from his sleeping bag quickly, as did Bones. Then she unzipped the tent a little, their heads peering out into the pitch of the night. Tim was doing exactly the same. Bones shouted through the rain.

'You ok, Tim?'

'Yeah. Very bad storm,' he confirmed he was ok but not convincingly.

Just then, there was a sizzling crackle, their hair rose, the air fizzed and the ground shook violently. As a bolt connected with the positive and negative forces. Another blinding light pierced the sky and the river course, lighting everything up, along with the rain drops.

'Shit!' Bones said instinctually. They all jumped and ducked at the same time covering their ears. 'Excuse me.' She looked to Parker who was beaming at her, palms over his ears.

'Frigging brill, Bones,' he said, positively pulsing, bristling with excitement. The rumble seemed to go on for ever.

'Haaa,' she chuckled, charmed by his indifference of her swearing.

BANG! CRACK! BOOM!

They all jumped again. The flashes felt hot and went on for an age. The ground rumbling, as if it was annoyed with the strike to it.

'It's right overhead,' Bones explained simply, Parker nodded. He slipped back and got his camera, set it to video and started filming Bones and the storm.

'It's…' She looked to her watch. 'Three AM and we have been woken by a thunderstorm…' Bones began talking into the camera, as Parker grinned wide at her narration. 'We are tenting by the river, after white water rafting this afternoon. We knew the storm was coming. The humidity was excessive tonight. Parker and I are…'

CRACKLE, BANG, BOOM, BOOM.

Bones ducked looking up, then back to the camera, her eyes wild with excitement.

'Parker, Tim and I are right underneath it… You can feel the power of the discharge. The ground is trembling and the smell of the ozone igniting, is astonishing. Our hair is statically charged and when the…'

BOOM BOOM CRACKLE CRACK TOOOOBOOM!

'Hooooly…' Bones looked out to the sky, seeing forked strikes spray out across the black, like veins on a leaf.

'So cool, so cool,' Parker muttered, quivering with delight. He turned the camera upwards to catch the lightning.

'Careful, Parker, don't get it wet,' she warned, as the rumbles continued shaking their hearts and bones.

'It's water proof,' he said quickly, his heart pummelling his sternum.

'The rain is easing,' Bones noted, looking to the smouldering remnants of the camp fire.

'Oh,' he said sounding disappointed. He aimed the camera over to Tim, who was waving at them, he looked a little worried.

'Tim looks scared, Bones,' he said sweetly.

'Oh, poor guy. Tim, come and join us!?' Tim didn't think twice and ran into their tent, they made a gap letting him in, Parker carried on filming.

'You being a woose?' Parker said cheekily.

'Haaa' Bones laughed and gave Parker a little shove in reprimand.

Tim giggled though. 'Yes, I hate storms.'

'Awww, poor, Tim.' Bones gave him a cute pout, which Parker filmed.

SIZZEL CRACKLE BOOOM!!!

Everybody ducked then giggled. Tim sat clutching his knees up to his chest, while Parker filmed the storm, sticking his head out the tent again. Bones lay down below him, head out too, as the rain began to ease.

A gust of wind rushed up the river and shook the trees oddly. Bones wrinkled her brow, as the rumbles ebbed away and it became strangely quiet.

'It's over,' Parker said sadly.

'No, keep filming, Parker,' she instructed sweetly, looking up to the sky and the tree line.

The drips of rain from leaves could be heard falling to the sand. And the rumble of the rapid became audible again.

'Keep filming…' Bones felt the air shift and their hair stood on end. A sense of foreboding nagged her stomach muscles. Everything went quiet and still.

'Oh, God,' Bones said slightly panicked. She grabbed Parker and pulled him flat, smothering him with her body. He huffed with the shock but kept his camera hand out the tent.

KAABOOM!! ZZZZIIINNNN… BHOOOM!! CRACK! BOOOOM!!

It was like an atom bomb had gone off within meters of them. The air smelt like smelting brimstone and burned their faces. There was a searing pure blue light, that made their retinas see stars. A sound that was akin to power cables hissing. A crack of wood, then the rain dumped from the sky instantly. Making them jump again when it hit the roof of the tent. They could feel the rumbles in the marrow of their bones. The power of the blast shook them on the ground, for several long seconds.

Bones looked to Parker and then outside. Two trees on the opposite bank were on fire. The flames tore up what was left of the trunk and leaves.

'Wow…' Parker said, squeezing from under Bones, as he lifted the camera to film the fire's rage. 'Have you ever seen that, Bones?' in awe of the power of nature at its most angry. The elemental forces at their most primal.

'No, never. We were too close to that,' she said, quite affected. They watched in silence, as the trees burned like enormous candles, but being doused by the pelting rain. 'You ok, Parker?'

'Yeah, what an amazing thing to see, Bones. Incredible.' Just as affected by what he had witnessed.

Parker waggled his nose smelling something nasty. Bones took a few seconds to smell it too. They both looked at each other, then slowly turned their heads to Tim, who said quite calmly, 'I apologise. I got scared and have soiled myself…' Still in the same position, knees up hugging himself.

Bones and Parker looked back at each other, then started to belly laugh, Parker turned the camera on him. Tim hid his face in his hands.

'Get out of our tent! HAAA!!' Bones said in hysterics for her, pointing him out. Parker videoed him leave and wobble uncomfortably back to his tent.

'Finish off the story, Bones,' Parker said, trying to stop laughing.

'Oh. Right, that was so amusing. Ok. A Lightning bolt, maybe sixty to a hundred feet away, hit those two trees. We're alive. The adventure continues…' She said spookily, flashing her eyes to the camera.

Parker gave a beaming smile into his own lens, flaring his eyes, then shut it off. As the storm rumbled away harmlessly now.

They eventually went back to sleep, with the chuckles dissipating just like the storm.


Nok sat at his desk with Booth, planning another take down of yet another prostitution ring, with a gaggle of agents watching on. FBI and Tokyo police. A message popped up on his computer and he saw it was for Booth.

'Watch this Dad XX,' was all it said, Nok nudged him and Booth opened the file.

All the agents turned to hear the intriguing video clip. Booth's face was fixed on the images, not noticing that he had an audience gathered around him.

'Is that your boy, Agent Booth? He's handsome.'

'Thank you.' Booth said idly, engrossed, watching the screen. Then Bones came into shot. Boom! The room jumped and gasped as Bones began her narration.

'Wow. Who is that? She's beautiful,' an agent said, oozing.

'Yes, sssh.' Another male agent taking a fancy to Bones instantly. Booth sneered at him a little, but had to watch.

'Shit…'

'Who's that guy?

'Jesus, that's one hell of a storm.'

'God, they're brave. They should have run.'

All the comments rumbled behind Booth, as they watched transfixed by the video.

'Where are they going to run to, you idiot?' one agent said to the other.

Booth heard Bones say, 'oh shit'. Then all holy hell broke lose. The frame trembled and the image of the lightning hitting the tree was spectacular. Gasps echoed off the Tokyo walls as they watched, jumped and reeled at the remarkable images.

Parker had caught it all inadvertently, while being smothered by Bones. The tree had split sending shards of wood, bark and leaves in all directions. The strike heating up the sap within and blasting it out, ripping the tree to shreds. Then it burst into orange and yellow flame, igniting the one next to it too.

Booth watched amazed at her insight and instinctual protection of Parker. The look of wonderment and excitement in Parker and Bones. It was obvious they were loving every moment.

Then the last part. The whole room erupted into hysterics. Booth laughed sweetly, seeing Parker rolling and Bones in hysterics. His heart warmed and fluttered.


The video was a hit all around the offices. Every time Booth walked past a computer, there was his son and Bones, in the middle of a lightning storm. It was strangely comforting having them around like that. Although not much work was getting done. He didn't really mind that.

He had texted them back thanking them for the video, and told them that it had caused quite a furore in Tokyo.


The next two days went by so quickly for Bones and Parker. They had to revisit plans as the storm had taken out a road by means of a mudslide after the storm had ripped through the valley. Taking them the long route round to the airport. They missed their plane connection but spent a lazy afternoon wandering around a town picking up gifts and sightseeing.

Eventually they left the North and dropped down to the South West province of Sichuan. Where they were to visit the giant pandas in a reservation there. The pandas are given every protection and convenience, watched day and night all year round for poaching or predation. Being so close to extinction, it was essential the species was preserved.

Parker and Booth exchanged texts regularly, but Parker kept them short now. He realised he didn't want to tell him everything, or he would have little to tell him when he saw him again. Booth understood that too, and wasn't too upset by the dwindling messages.

Bones and Booth sent each other night, night messages and love back and forth every day. Which kept them keen and eager to be close. Festering their emotions, making them sick, love sick.

Parker and Bones kept up with their ritual each morning. Parker on his silk rug, getting very proficient and elegant. It was after this ritual, while they sat watching to sun rise over the hills of Panda sanctuary, that Bones asked Parker,

'Would you have any objection to us going to see your Dad, before we go home, Parker?'

'No, Bones course not! How are we going to do that?' he enquired excitedly.

'Well I was thinking. I could rearrange our return flights and have a short stop over in Tokyo. We'd get maybe, six hours there? I thought Nok could pick us up, and we'd surprise your Dad.'

'That's a brilliant idea. Yeah, let's do it!' Obviously enchanted by the idea.

'Yeah well, I need to speak to your Mum first. It means you'd be home a day later.'

'Oh, Bones, she won't mind. Besides you need to see him don't you?'

'Yes I concede, I do.' Their understanding stronger day by day, the closer they got.

'I know he needs to see you, Parker. He'll still have a couple of weeks before he comes back. So it will be six weeks before he's home. That's too long for your father without seeing you,' she told him sweetly, Parker nodded dropping his eyes a little.

'You're missing your Mum and Dad, aren't you?' she said softly.

'Not Mum really. But Dad a little, he would love this trip, Bones,' he said with a little pout. Revealing a little of his honest heart. Bones was his surrogate mother and he didn't miss Rebecca because of that.

'Yes, I know. So we'll change the flights and go see him then?'

'Yes. Dad will be so happy, Bones. You'll get tons of kisses for that.' he said cheekily, nudging her sweetly.

'Haaa. That's the idea, Parker. Come on, let's eat and see these pandas.'

Bones took his hand as they made their way back to the cabin she had booked. The cabin was private and nestled between the main entrance to the national park, and the quietest panda areas.

They had virtually free range to stroll along paths, and watch the gentle creatures at their leisure. The cabin was small, compact and had a viewing veranda of the lush sultry forest surrounding them. Directly off the veranda, steps led to a clearing covered in a swathe of long grass, two foot deep. Where the tall grasses gently waltzed with the whispering, steamy breeze.

They were only here for two nights, but it was a tranquil base to relax around and recharge themselves, before they had flights and long drives. So they were determined to make the most of their time here.

The main hotel had many visitors and was too busy for Bones and Parker. They were glad with where they were, although they ate their meals in the rather excellent restaurant. It also had a spa. Bones asked if Parker wanted a massage or treatment, he looked at her as if she was insane or from another planet. Which made her giggle.

'Do you mind if I do this afternoon? Only for an hour? There's a guided trail walk you could go on while I'm having my treatment.'

'No you go and have your massage, Bones. I'd like to just sit on the veranda to see if the Pandas come.'

'They might not, Parker?' Gently warning him that they might not show.

'Yeah I know, but you never know. I said a prayer last night, maybe it will be answered.'

'Hum, maybe.' Bones gently patted his back as they wandered in to lunch.


Parker was already tucking into his second helping of spicy noodles when a smartly dressed man came up to their table.

'Dr Brennan?'

'Err… Yes, hello.' Bones looked up to the man curiously, swallowing her mouthful of tea, then returning the small china cup to the coaster.

'This came for you this morning.' He handed her a letter.

'Oh. Thanks, thanks very much.' Bones flared her eyes at Parker, then looked at the hand written address. Her heart skipped a beat and she grinned at her travel companion.

'It's your Dad's handwriting,' she said softly. Parker giggled rocking back in his chair.

'Bet it's a love letter, Bones.' She blushed suddenly remembering their conversation while she was preparing to come away. Maybe it was, she mused. She fingered the letter, flipping it over a couple of times in her slightly nervous fingers.

'Open it, Bones,' he urged sweetly, sensing her nervousness.

'Maybe later, Parker.' He pouted and dropped his shoulders.

'You're gonna cry aren't you?'

'No! Well. Maybe after I've read it. So I think I should read it in private don't you?' Leaning into him across the table, flicking her eyes to the other diners. Parker nodded cutely his eyes twinkling at her.

'Yeah.'


Bones left Parker happy and relaxed on the veranda setting up his camera on the handrail, just in case the pandas decided to pay him a visit. Bones took her letter with her, unopened as of yet.

Bones found a bench to sit down on, under a massive thatch of bamboo coppice. The sun glinting through the thick tubes and casting her in to cool shade. She slipped her index finger under the flap and tore it open delicately. Her heart thumping, stomach flipping wildly and her trepidation at fever pitch.

Two pages, of hand written Booth. Bones was slightly shaking, the pages trembled in her fingers. She noted her body's reaction was highly irrational and alien to her. But she adored the sensations the anticipation of reading him gave her.

'Hey Bones, remember when I said love letters didn't have to be read? Well I was wrong, they do. So here is your first. It will be rambling, irrational and illogical, just how you like it baby, but it's all me. Heart and soul. Your Booth, your lover. You're gonna have to indulge me a little here because I need to explain why I love you… And for you to realise why, I always will Bones. You see, I've had this constant relentless craving for you for years. Too many years and now we are having our time, I'm finally happy. For the first time in my life. Happy. I can't begin to tell you how that makes me feel. My heart is so full, it's fit to burst. I've sent up my prayers and the big guy has answered me. It scares me a little, I have to confess, getting everything my heart has ever dreamed of. Is scary. I won't admit to Nok where I am sometimes. Since we spoke last, ever since we separated? I can't get you out of my mind, your eyes the vastest deepest shade of blue, haunt me. Oh God, woman, I know when you look into me, when we share a glance? We talk. Have you noticed that? It's like we have a sixth sense or something. We know what the other is thinking and that is just awesome. How many couples can say that? Not many I'd bet.'

Bones smiled nodding, agreeing with his statement. Crossing her legs, reading on.

'Your touch steadies me, calms me. Without it, I'm a wreck… and on that note, do you get shiver down your spine when I touch you? Like I do? I love that sensation… I try to hide it, as I'm supposed to be a big strong FBI guy, and have to be tough. But you know me better than that, don't cha, Bones? You know I'm a puppy, soft and a love sick fool for you… You've always known it. And that's ok, because now we are together, I don't need to hide anything anymore. Never again…'

She sighed softly uncrossing her legs and leaning her head on her up turned palm.

A couple walked past her, nodding their hello's gently with charming smiles, she smiled back softly and continued. They watched her for a little longer discretely, as Bones returned to read on.

'Your rainbow smile colours my world. Makes you look and feel like, a fragrant bright spring day. The world smiles with you, but you wouldn't notice that, I do…'

Bones registered his words then looked up to the couple again, who flicked a glance back to her, smiling warmly at her. She let a little huff go. He was always right, Bones mused.

'I can feel you under my skin, into my bones, your name running through the marrow.. It's like I'm possessed by you… You make me sing inside. My soul whispers your name back to me… You're so deep, you're part of me now. How could I ever leave you? The notion is absurd, and pointless, because I carry you with me… Bones, you're in my dreams too. You've been starring in them, the leading lady for so, so long. Is it good to know you have infected me night and day? You and Parker are the reason I get up every morning.'

'Oh, Booth,' she spoke to the ether, so touched, taking a deep breath and sighing.

'I blame you, for me peering at the moon longingly. For me smiling envious, at couples kissing in the street. I hold you responsible for me gazing to the horizon, and praying you will walk over it, to me… Lord, I miss you, Bones. My Bones. I wonder where you are. I'm feeling weary, my spirit's weak now, I need you closer. Both of you. I've got little dark clouds floating above my head, Bones. Do you understand? Do you? Can you feel me ache for you? Bleed to trace your body with my fingers, and paint your masterpiece. Oh Bones, Tempe my love, I don't care how you do it, but please, please get to me, anyhow you can. Whenever you can… You're my salvation, my life support. Put the flesh back on my bones.. Let my wings unfold and fly with me. Your Booth. XX'

Bones closed her eyes, the saltwater trickling down her cheeks. She took a deep breath, holding it deep. Booth had written what she had been feeling. That she needed to be with him, even for a short time. That was why she had suggested the flight change to Parker this morning. She didn't know how she knew. His pain; she felt it inside, in something untouchable, unmentionable in her rational world.

She was no longer a single entity, She had a permanent satellite. An immovable eternal companion. To trust and love, to hold and share her fears and joys with, without repercussions or judgment. They were on the same ellipse now, one day soon, they would collide.

Bones folded up the letter carefully popping it back into the envelope, took a deep breath wiping her eyes, and went for her massage.


Bones returned refreshed and happy. She had rearranged the flights and they had been confirmed. She walked up the path towards the cabin but slowed considerably, seeing three huge black and white pandas in the long grass clearing at the rear of the cabin. Her heart pounded knowing Parker's prayers had been answered. The joy that filled her being was overwhelming; irrationally and she felt like weeping.

Was there a God? Did he answer prayers of the humble and righteous? For the innocents of this world?…

Bones walked slowly and quietly onto the wooden veranda, where Parker sat in a state of almost trancelike expression. He didn't even look up as she sat down close next to him.

They watched the huge fluffy creatures. Bones thought they looked strange and out of place against the lush green and sharp yellows of the bamboo wood, yet surprisingly natural. Munching and chopping casually, they looked like obese old men sharing a meal, sitting quite happily in the remains of the sunlight of the day.

Bones noticed that Parker's camera was videoing the virtually silent visitors. She could hear the mammals' breathing, and when one of them looked over to them, she could have sworn there was a recognition of thanks for their stillness, in the panda's eyes.

Bones felt a warm touch on her fingers and she folded her hand around Parker's like a silken glove, to exchange the experience.

Who would have thought the boy in her hand, who was a dedicated adrenalin junky, could hold so still and quiet for such a long time? Just happy to be in the moment. To connect with nature that way. Bones knew it showed great maturity and empathy for the creatures and their needs. Not unlike his father when the need arose. Her admiration for the boy immense.

The darkness fell in the wood, the creatures got up, lumbering, and wandered off. Parker didn't move for a long time after they left and disappeared.

Bones looked to Parker puzzled.

'You ok?' she asked softly, he turned to her with the most serene smile.

'I was praying, Bones. Thanking God for that gift and answering my prayers.' Bones did know why, but she drew him close and wept on his shoulder. He held her tight rubbing his cheek against her hair. Stroking her back affectionately. She felt foolish and confused at her emotional state. And didn't know what to do, she knew she just wanted a hold this beautiful boy.

'Dad says you don't believe in God or the soul, Bones.' A statement like question, that caught her off guard. He lifted her head to look into his eyes, they were bright and curious but gentle.

'I'm taking it under advisement,' Bones said softly with a wonky smile. Wiping her tears away with a phew out of her lips. Parker nodded and looked back to the flattened grass where the giant panda's had been.

'Think of it like this, Bones. Think of a hand. Like this' He took her fingers and stroked them, looking at her elegant soft digits. 'Then think of a glove. The glove fits tight and warm over the hand. The glove is your body, it's fragile and wears out eventually. The hand inside the glove, is everything you have felt, the memories of people you have loved and met, all your thoughts, dreams and experiences, everything you have learned. That's your spirit, your soul. The glove is gone but the hand remains. It lives on, in other people's memories, on and on… Sometimes you just have to trust what's inside, rather than the glove.'

Bones had been staring at him while he explained the soul to her in simple terms. His terms. But what had really shaken her was his last sentence.

'You just have to trust what's inside, rather than the glove.'

'That was beautiful, Parker. I read the letter?' she began quietly, Parker smiled and nodded gently. 'Your Dad said something which made me question my principles on just that question. Whether we have something inside these fragile bodies, which is divine or immeasurable in scientific terms. I knew…Just knew last night, that your Dad was… in pain. He needed to see us. That's why I asked you about going to see him before we went home.'

'How did you know?'

'Haa. I don't know! I just did, I felt it. I trusted what was inside me, rather than the glove.'

'See? Your soul knew Dad needed us.'

'Don't tell anyone you converted me.' Bones rolled into him a little with another wonky smile.

'Haaa! I didn't convert you Bones, just explained something you didn't understand.'

'Awesome!' she said cutely, pulling him up. 'Come on dinner and bed. I really fancy fries, don't you? Missing fries so much.' Flaring her eyes wide at him.

'You're so funny, Bones.'

They went to dinner talking about the wonderful pandas and that she had arranged the flights. They sat on the veranda after dinner playing card games, till they yawned hard and fell into bed late. Content.


Bones leant over the snoozing Parker giving him a little shake whispering softly, 'Parker? Wake up. The pandas are back.'

The small frame of Parker rolled and hummed. He opened his eyes to the light of the early risen sun washed out by a heavy mist, that clung to the earth around their cabin. It was cold and Parker didn't want to leave the warmth and comfort of his bed. Bones tried again.

'Morning sleepyhead. Panda' are sitting in the mist. It will make a great video?' With a charming smile. Parker closed his eyes briefly, yawning hard, muttering.

'Kay.' He sat up slowly, Bones was already handing him a cup of hot tea. 'What time is it?'

'Early. I was on the veranda and they came back.' Parker slurped his tea and smiled.

'What are you doing up so early?'

'I heard some noises and took a look outside,' she was still whispering, her pupils dilated and twinkling at him. 'They are close, Parker. Really close. Come see.' Trying to contain her excitement.

Yesterday's visit had been serene and calm. The creatures sat calmly knowing they were watched. At a distance. This time however, Bones couldn't believe her eyes when she wiped the window pane of condensation and looked outside to the clearing.

'Please, Parker, you really need to see this. It's incredible.' Parker's brow furrowed at her plea to him. He put his cup down, flinging the cover off, excited. Bones stood in front of him holding his shoulders, stopping him advancing to the door. He looked puzzled.

'Be really quiet. Calm, ok?' He nodded, intrigued. Bones stepped aside then took his hand and they walked quietly to the door, 'Ssssh,' she mouthed silently, he nodded.

Bones cracked open the door and looked through it and smiled. Then let Parker come to stand under her, both peering out.

A huge Panda sat heavy on the grass outside the cabin, no more than three meters away, shrouded in mist, its head popping out of the swirling mist. Its whiskers had dew drops quivering on the ends, like glistening diamonds. It was so close they could see the colours of it's irises. They could smell it too. Parker ducked away slowly and got his camera, set it to video and started to film the panda.

They heard a thump and a shuffling sound as Parker stayed still but felt Bones' warm palm on his shoulder for reassurance. Then from the right of the veranda's deck, another panda walked casually past the door a foot away, then down the steps, giving Parker a lovely butt shot. Its bulk and considerable weight, creaking the deck as it padded along.

Bones could feel Parker quivering under her palm. She gave him a long squeeze as they held their breaths, as the panda walked past the seated one and wandered off through the mist, getting swallowed up by it and disappearing as if it was a ghostly apparition.

The seated panda watched his companion leave and looked to the humans slowly then it too got up and walked away. Leaving a trough in the mist. The mist swirled and covered the trail behind the body of the creature, till it too, vanished.

Parker waited a while before he dared to move. Bones snuck a glance over his head, left and right to check there were no others. Once she was sure, she let her breath go and smiled. Parker looked up with tears sparkling in his perfect blue eyes.

'That was just…' He couldn't find the adjective.

'Awesome?' Bones said affected by his emotional state too. A warm tear rolled over his lower lid as he nodded agreeing. Bones wiped the tear off his cheek with her thumb, smiling hard.

'He left a calling card,' she said softly. Parker, ever the professional, turned his camera and himself, out the door to capture a steaming pile of giant panda excrement on the deck.

'Oh man! Gotta take some home.'

'Haaa.' Bones chuckled cutely, Parker turned the camera to her now, she had a black Boothy t shirt on, its motif was, 'Property of the FBI'. And a pair of black boy panties on, her hair loose, framing her glowing features and tanned flesh.

'You want to take Panda excrement home?' said incredulously, highly amused. He nodded quickly beaming a smile hard into her. She dropped her hip placing her hand high, on the frame of the door, the other on her hip. Which lifted her night shirt to reveal a little too much upper inner thigh, a flash of taut belly and her scanty panties. Her nipples pert and visible through the t shirt, from the cool morning mist.

'Hokay. We better let it cool down first. You can carry it home, I don't want a pile of crap in my case!' Parker giggled madly, grateful for her indulging him. Her smile was more beautiful than a sunset.

She laughed just as hard, ran her hand down the frame of the door, slipping back inside the cabin. Parker turned the camera to himself and smiled to the lens. The sexy seductive vision of her, the overtones and erotic undertones, flew over Parker's, eight and three quarter year old head.

'How cool is, Bones Dad? Letting me take panda poo home? She's da bomb!' he chortled and switched off his camera.


'Off to Jiuzhaigou valley now, Panda's incredible! Took loads of video. Short plane flight, then 10 hrs by car. Bones has hired a 4X4. Have sent you another video clip. Panda's this time. We got so close! Awesome! Enjoy. XX J'

Booth read the text and chuckled. He was delighted by his son's text message. He was still missing them dreadfully but was getting used to the annoying ache in his chest now. He was counting down the days till he saw them again.

Nok came into the office with coffee and doughnuts, which lit Booth up. 'Arrrh, Nok. You're the man. Starving. Parker has sent another text, they are going to Jiuzhaigou valley now. Bones is driving apparently, she's hired a 4X4.'

'Yes and they will need it. After the earthquakes, many of the roads have not been repaired. Their journey will be long and uncomfortable. It will get better the closer they get, but the first part is arduous at best. Are they well?'

'Yes, yeah. Still having fun by the sounds of it. Oh yeah, Parker said he has sent another clip?' Booth told him hopefully.

'Oh, I shall see if it has come.' Nok set about checking his e mails.

'Thanks.' Booth munched through his sweet light textured doughnut in seconds, swallowing down the chunks with a hot slush of strong coffee.

Nok was reading his inbox, he saw two e mails, one with the attachment obviously the video. Then another from Bones, it was written in Chinese. His brow wrinkled curiously as he opened it. Booth pinched another doughnut and took a bite, tapping away on his key board, not noticing Nok's intrigued expression.

'Greetings Nok. Thank you for looking after Booth. You are a generous and compassionate man. Parker and I feel so much comfort, knowing you are taking such care of him. I know Booth has been emotionally up and down. I apologise to you for that. Booth and I have started a romantic relationship and our separation has been extremely difficult for us. I don't know if he had told you about the situation, he probably has but I feel it is respectful to explain, why he has been so upset sometimes. So your continued patience and friendship would be gratefully appreciated.

Parker and I will not see him for another twelve days or so. I know how hard it is for me. Booth being the sensitive man he is, is struggling to cope. I know this in my heart. To be honest, so am I. If it wasn't for our hectic schedule and affection of Parker. I would lose some emotional stability. So can I possibly impose on you, and ask another favour of you? Parker and I would like to come and see him before we fly back to the US. I have checked the flights and it is possible for us to have a six hour stop over in Tokyo on the 27th. If you could be so kind as not to tell him, we should like to surprise him. I have your address and will get a taxi there and back from the airport. Please e mail me back if this is acceptable with you. In advance, thank you, Bones X'

Nok smiled to himself and hit reply.

'Dear Bones, yes, yes. You must come, I shall pick you up from the airport and take you back. It would be my honour to do this small thing for you and Parker. You are correct, Booth has told me of your deepening relationship. You cannot share a gallon of Saki and not share your heart. I have to say, I am delighted you have both found each other finally. Booth is very up and down emotionally. But when he receives a message or video, he shines like the sun. You are a lucky woman, Booth loves you deeply, completely. Just send the flight details and I shall be there, I will make sure Booth is at my home. This is a wonderful thing you are doing for him and Parker. Until the 27th I wish you a safe journey. Nok X'

'Is there a clip, Nok?' Booth asked looking over his computer screen

'Oh, sorry, yes. Can you hang on? I'll send it to you now.' Booth nodded kindly, Nok forwarded it to his screen instantly.

'Thanks. Its pandas apparently,' Booth said beaming wide at Nok, who nodded smiling hard at him. Knowing what was in store for him in five days time.

Booth opened it, the video clip began to roll. Booth did indeed light up seeing the pandas sitting in the mist, on the first afternoon. Then Parker had cut the video, and it went to the early morning visit. Booth gasped at the incredible image of the panda sat almost sadly in the mist, dew dripping off the whiskers and then, the huge panda walking into shot and lumbering down the steps, only a few feet away from them.

'Oh. Wow,' he said, eyes wide and astonished. The clip played on until the image of Bones leaning on the door frame, and the gentle amusing conversation began, after the pandas had disappeared from view. But that wasn't what had Booth heart rate soar, then nearly stop it with the sudden absolutely sensual vision of her. More flesh and sneak previews than his trousers could contain.

Booth's mouth parched, his member hardened, causing him to twitch on his leather chair. 'Oh, shit,' he muttered, his eyes glued to the screen. Her erotic body positively calling to him. Nok wrinkled his brow getting up and walking around to look.

'No don't.' Booth placed his palms over the screen to shield her image from him, Booth blushed and looked up to him, Nok laughed.

'What is it? Panda's having sex?' Nok asked cheekily.

'No it's, Bones. Go away.'

'She has not sent you porn??'

'Haaa. No!'

'Let me see, Booth.'

'Nok?? No, please man. Give me a minute could you?' A plea in his eyes, Nok smacked his shoulder, smiling wide.

'You're forgetting, Booth, I have a copy too.' Nok walked away to his chair with a cheeky smile.

Booth wanted to stop him from seeing it. But knew if he stood up, so would something else and he would be totally embarrassed. 'Shit, Shit… Nok?'

'Haaa. Let me see what has got FBI all hot under the collar.' Nok sat and opened the clip. 'Okay we have pandas… They are very cute. Oh wow, they got close. Very close.' Nok was astonished too. Booth sat forward and covered his face, trying desperately to let his erection wane. However it was disobeying him.

'Oh! Oh! Haaa! Ooo veeery nice. Property of the FBI. Cute. Is it yours?'

'Yeeeaass,' Booth drooled, his horrified expression turned into a huge smile as Nok chuckled at him, they locked eyes across the table.

'That is so hot, Booth. She doesn't get it either, does she? She can't have seen this. Or…' Nok flared his eyes at the still stiff, Booth. 'She did and wanted to give you a taste of things to come.'

'Nok. Piss off.'

'Haaa Ok, ok. I'll get an early lunch shall I?' He had a charming knowing grin on his lips, as he wandered slowly out the office closing the door behind him. Booth watched him go. Pushed his member into a more comfortable position, then hit the repeat button.

'Oh baby. What are you doing to me?' Booth muttered resting his head on his palms staring at her laugh, smile and talk to Parker, looking totally ravish-able. He paused one frame which caught his attention the most and just stared.


Booth found himself, sat on the closed toilet lid, his sweaty brow resting on the cool cubical wall. His chest rising and falling, his eyes closed, her image replaying in his head over and over. The back of his hand covered with his semen, climaxing for the third time in twenty minutes. He ripped off another wad of tissue and cleaned himself up. He took a deep breath, letting it go in a long silent blow. His only problem was, his erection was still there. Strong and pulsing. His three eruptions still hadn't killed of his desire or his ache.

'Shit,' he said quietly, looking at his cock then grinned. Her image popping right back into his mind. 'Oh God, Bones. Not again,' he muttered, took a breath and began to pump his shaft again, slowing down his actions this time. Taking his time.

The first time he entered the cubicle, he had fallen in the door, ripped his cock out and came almost the instant he wrapped his fingers around his painful erection. His three shots left a high arc over the seat and floor. He pumped his shaft again hard and fast. The second climax, he stifled his groan, biting his lip, staggering forward, slapping his palm on the far wall to stop him from falling over. Another mess to clean up.

Then Booth cleaned up the toilet and floor, finally himself. Flushing the toilet, slammed the seat lid down and sat heavily on it. His penis still hard and needing attention. He saw her, thighs, her tanned skin, her nipples peaking the sexy as hell t shirt. The utterly rip-able panties. Before he knew it, he was banging his helmet so hard, squeezing the head so hard, what semen he had left, spurted over the back of his hand. Booth groaned hard and long, gritting his molars hard almost cracking them. Stretching his legs out as the third climax cramped his thighs, burned his lungs. And threw his head back with its power. He slumped to the wall, of the far end toilet in the police station.

'Bones, baby. Gotta go again. Sorry, sorry,' he mumbled, licked his palm and replaced it around his helmet, pushing his other hand under his balls and spread his legs, squeezing his hard scrotum in a pulsing motion. His head back, neck arched. Booth swallowed, his Adams apple bobbed and settled. It was building again, beads of sweat appeared on his brow. All his muscles rigid.

She was standing smiling, arm up, the slightest bit of belly exposed and dropping her hip. 'Oh God, woman,' he whispered. His property, his. 'Oh yes come on, Bones. Fuck, fuck… Arrrh. Love ya, love ya…' Booth recoiled on the seat, his tension forcing his right hand to blur with the speed of his passion. His slippery palm burning with its friction almost painfully. Pushing his scrotum up and out. Booth felt the onslaught wreck him, as his hot semen oozed this time onto the back of his hand. Trembling, he took a deep satisfying breath.

He was drained literally, and mentally. Bodily fluids evacuated completely. Nothing left. His eyes closed, he wanted to sleep, needed to sleep. He closed his eyes and leant onto the wall again; it was cool and made him sigh. Finally his erection waned, he groaned relieved. The hurricane had subsided.

Booth cleaned himself up and stood, knowing he had to get back. He flushed and walked out, splashing cold water over his face and washing his hands. His shirt was tight and felt sticky on his shoulders. His legs weak and a little wobbly. He was tired, so, so tired. He held his weight up on the sink top with his palms and looked at his reflection. Special Agent Seeley Booth looked exhausted. He felt it. He reached into his pocket turning his back to his reflection, and dialled Bones.

'Hey, Booth! You ok?' Bones asked, delighted to hear his voice.

'Yeah. I'm good.' He grinned his eyes then walked to the far wall, put his back up against it, then slid down, till his buttocks hit the cool tiled floor.

'No you're not, what's wrong?' She could hear something in his voice, in his tone, something wasn't right.

'Can you talk, Bones?'

'Umm. Sort of. Hang on a sec.' Bones pulled the car to the side of the road. 'It's your Dad, Parker. He wants a word with me, I'll just take this ok?'

'Sure, Bones. Hi Dad!' Parker shouted to the handset.

Booth smiled hearing him. 'Hi ya, little man!'

Bones got out the car and walked to the edge of the high track, stood looking at the view of the lake below her, bright emerald and shimmering under the terrifying hot sun. Leaving Parker cool, in the air-conditioned vehicle.

'What's wrong, Booth?' she said softly, still worried.

'Did you see that video?'

'Umm. Which one?' she asked confused.

'Panda on the deck?'

'No, why? Was it not good then?' Booth huffed an ironic chuckle weakly, Bones grinned slowly hearing him, noting him sounding so tired and feeble.

'Bones, check what the little man sends, ok?'

'Riiighttt. Why?' Her brow wrinkling, she drew patterns in the dirt at her foot, watching her idle task absently.

'Cos any more like that and it's gonna kill me.'

'How so?'

'I've just spent the last hour jerking off in the exec bathroom. Till I've just collapsed to the floor. Four times woman. Four times! I just couldn't stop, couldn't stop. I got nothing left, nada, zilch. Blown the lot. Jesus baby you're gorgeous, set me alight. I just gotta be inside you soon or, or, I, or…' whimpering his need for her, almost in a panic.

'Hey, ssshh… sssh, it's ok,' she oozed seductively, softly, looking around to Parker who gave her a little wave, she waved back then walked away a little, looking back to the lake.

'I'm sorry. I didn't know, realise, but I just have to say. Bravo, Booth. Haaa.'

'Don't do that,' Booth whined like a spoilt child, rolling his head on the wall, fluttering his eyes closed.

'Why. I'm impressed?'

'Don't giggle like that. Everard is waking up again and I just want to sleep. Go home and sleep.'

'Aaaawww Booth, Everard? That's so cute.' Charmed by his pet name for his manhood.

'Stop woman. Now, or I'll…' he trailed off, pushing his cock to the side again, wincing. He had been a little rough, his glands felt tender and sore.

'You'll what, lover?' she cooed teasingly.

'Bones, I'm warning you,' he said, trying to tell her off but grinning the whole time.

'Are you hard for me now?'

'Yes, and sore.'

'Awww. You didn't use enough lubrication, Booth. You should have licked your palm,' she purred seductively. Bones sat down in the dirt and crossed her legs. The view stunning but all she could see was the image of him, and what she was going to instruct him to do.

'Jesus!' He stood up and went back into the cubical. Bones heard him shuffling and a door slamming. She grinned naughtily. She heard his zipped rasp and him grunt. Bones was enjoying herself. This was such a turn on, she could see now why Booth had enjoyed the similar situation with her, a few of weeks ago.

'Lick your palm get it really wet, Booth. Like my mouth will be.'

'Oh, God, Bones. Do you do that?' he enquired breathlessly, as the shot of excitement ripped to his groin and made it clench and stiffen even more.

'Hoo yes.' The smile on her lips he could almost see. 'I'm excellent too. Just you wait. You're large, so wide, I don't know if I could manage you all the way down my throat. But I'll try my best for you, Booth.' Bones whispering her sexy magic in his ear, Booth's hand worked hard.

'Ooooh fuck woman, doing my head in.'

'I'm so wet, Booth. Never been this wet before… You're gonna slip in so easy, deep and hard. I can't wait to be with you.' Bones closed her eyes and looked up to the sky, her own desire raging. Pledging that was the truth, she could barely stand to do this.

'Umm! Grrr Geerrrr.' Booth was grunting, growling harshly. All the while trying to be silent. But her erotic imagery and truth, fuelled his masturbatory excitement.

'That's it. It's coming, getting closer. So close, Booth…' Bones could hear him grunting, The devastatingly sexy sound of rustling clothes and him trying to be a quiet as he could. Fearing exposure if anyone happened to walk in. 'Wait till you feel me suckle you, you'll never have felt anything like it. Come on, Booth.'

'Yeah, yeah love ya. Love ya, love ya so much, Bones.' Whimpering the words, his fist a blur, his purple helmet glistening, the wet slide of his palm, making noises she could hear. It was incredibly sensuous.

Bones took a breath and whispered, hearing his breath hitching, his hums getting deeper and more urgent.

'Love you too, love you. Come, come in my wet mouth…' Bones whimpered her words too. Her hands trembling. Sex at a distance was almost as good as when together, she mused, especially with him. Bones was nearing her own climax.

Bones shifted on her buttocks as the thick seem in her jeans hit her clitoris, she orgasmed in her jeans, holding her torso's weight on one palm, her arm straight out behind her.

'Seeeeley,' she muttered, trying not to give anything away to Parker. Bones held as still as she could, while the ecstasy fizzed up from her pussy to her belly, constricting it painfully.

'OH!GOD!Bones!' The image of coming in her mouth was the catalyst that unleashed his climax.

Booths' orgasm was harsh, painful and broke his legs with its force. He crashed down to his knees, trying to break his fall with his phone hand, grabbing the toilet holder, ripping it out the wall. With a crack of the plaster and a puff of plaster dust. His chest hit the rim of the toilet seat but he didn't feel it. He was too pumped, too hard. His mobile clattered to the floor and spun around, under the bowl.

Bones heard it all happen but could do nothing for him. She was trying to control her breath and emotions. She looked around to Parker who had his earphones in, from his ipod and was singing quiet happily unaware. She felt her shoulders relax seeing that.

There was a rustling and a few mumbled expletives, then he was in her ear again.

'Bones?' His after climax voice made her torso twist again. The sexiest thing she had ever heard.

'Seeley. You ok?' she asked fairly seriously. Her own voice sounded breathy, like Monroe's.

'Ooooww. Sort of. I broke stuff and cut my hand, got Boothy juice over my pants. My knees hurt and I'm looking down a toilet. So, yeah not too bad,' he told her loaded with sarcasm, and lovely sweet humour.

'Haaaa. That was so intense. I came with you, Booth.'

'Nooo?' he said stunned by that.

'Did. Thankfully Parker is listening to his ipod.'

'Oh, Bones amazing. Haa. You're amazing.' he gushed, he got up flipping the seat down and sitting on it. Trying to stem the flow of blood on his palm and clean up his pants.

'That was so hot, Booth.' Bones grinned sexily to the lake. Taking off her sunglasses to wipe her brow with the back of her hand.

'Haaa. Understatement, Bones. Bit undignified, for me at least.'

'I know that wasn't very romantic, Booth.'

'Yeah, sorry.' His voice terribly apologetic and sad.

'Hey, let me finish,' she chastised him gently.

'Sorry, go on.' Booth finished with his clean up, tucking himself away, zipping up then taking a deep relaxing breath.

'It might not have been romantic but it was wonderful. Truly. Your letter? Oh Booth, it was the most romantic deed in my history. It made me quite emotional. I'm so pleased we've taken this step.'

'Oh, Bones, wish you were here.'

'I know. I do too, one day soon, we'll all be together. Not long.'

'Umm. God, I'm a wreak. I stink and still need to sleep.'

'Go home sick, tell them you have a headache,' she said seriously, not realising it had a double meaning, and was in fact true.

'I do! Everard will not be up to anything for a while.'

'Haaa. You're so funny, and naughty, and handsome, and… I love you.' Those three words just kept spilling freely now. Once she had said them they poured out.

Booth felt his eyes close at her lovely words. 'Call me later. Or, text anything, Please?'

'Yes ok, we've got a few hours ahead of us, but I promise I will,' Bones placating him gently.

'Ok. Drive safe.'

'Course, I'm a good driver!'

'Haaa ok. Speak later?'

'Yeah. Bye.'

'Bye.' Bones clicked her phone off, got to her feet walking, back to the car. She took a deep breath and slipped in casually.

'Everything ok, Bones?'

'Yeeaah. He was having a bad day is all. He said your video was amazing! Thought you did a fantastic job of filming everything.'

'Cool. I'll ring him tonight, cheer him up.'

'Great idea. Shall we go?'

'Yeah.. Can I plug my ipod in, Bones?'

'Sure!' Beaming at him, popping on her sunglasses again.


Bones and her little travel companion had arrived late at the hotel of the end of one of the largest lakes at Jiuzhaigou. They had a great view of a waterfall and the lake it fell into. The service was excellent and the hotel fairly opulent in an understated way. Unbeknown to Parker or Booth, Bones had booked the best that money could buy. She had money now, more than she could possibly spend. So this was one of her indulgences, her vice. Her travel was a mixture of expense and the real life of ordinary folk.

They were exhausted, especially Bones, who had driven for ten hours. Over broken roads and river beds, circumnavigated collapsed villages when she could, or driven through some which were struggling to get back to normality, after the cataclysmic earthquakes the previous year.

Neither of the travellers could not be moved by the hardships and desolation of the humble Chinese, as they tried to put their lives and homes back together.

In some towns the people's faces looked desperate and grief stricken. They barely had the energy to notice the car pass by. In other towns they were flagged down by people, wanting lifts to the next stage of their weary journeys. Bones gave several people, young families, lifts. Some told her their stories, others just sat quiet and thankful to be off their feet for a while. Nok was correct, it was an arduous journey. But strangely uplifting. Seeing the perseverance of humanity slowly recovering. Helping one another when they could. Humbling.

Parker was fairly quiet at dinner, and picked at his food a little.

'You ok, Parker? You seem a little down?' Bones enquired gently, seeing his sorrow.

'It's just so sad. Those poor people, losing their families, homes and friends, not having schools to go to.'

'Yes. I agree. I know it has made you sad seeing their trails and hardships. Tell me, Parker, does seeing that make you feel anything else?'

'Humm. Yes. It makes me feel so lucky. Because I have a Dad, two mums, a house, school, friends, food, camera, ipod. I'm so lucky,' he explained softly. Dropping his eyes to his plate, his appetite disappearing.

Bones smiled reaching for his little hand, taking it warmly. 'When you're bigger, you'll look back on these memories and understand Parker... You'll appreciate all that you have. And you'll want to help when you see other people suffering. Today has marked you. Today is sad, yes but you'll never forget it and by that token, one day when you moan about not getting your way or not getting what you wanted for Christmas... today will pop into your head and you'll stop the moaning, remember those who have nothing and still survive. Life isn't about things, it's about what's inside the glove right?'

Parker looked up to her and beamed. She had used his words right back to him. He nodded squeezing her hand.

'Let's ring Dad.' Bones grinned wide.

'Yeah, let's.' She tapped his button nose, finishing her tea.

Parker called his father while Bones took a shower. She told Parker to talk first, then she would speak to him after, while he had his shower.

'Hey, Dad.'

'Little man., you sound so good to me. That panda clip? Wow, Parker, that was incredible!'

'Haaa. Bones woke me and we looked out, I mean he was on the balcony for heavens sake! Sat there having a… poo. Amazing. I've got a bag full in my case. Haaa.'

'Lovely. So, you ok? Feeling homesick?'

'No I'm fine, Dad. I miss you obviously. I like you rubbing my hair and throwing me over your shoulder but no I'm fine. Mum is fine having a good time on the beach. I don't miss the beach at all… I'm so lucky to have come here. I've seen so many wonderful thing, amazing people and learnt so much. Bones is incredible, Dad, seriously. We laugh all the time, have really deep discussions about the world and culture and stuff. We sing songs all the time. Bones is fearless… Did you know she went down a huge rapid in Colorado, body surfing it! Category 6 for heavens sake! I mean I fell out the boat on a four, and that was nothing compared…'

'Wait, hang on, Parker. You what? Fell out the boat and body surfed a rapid?' Booth asked incredulously.

'Oooops… Umm, yeah. It was nobody's fault, Dad. I had a life belt and helmet on. I did as I was instructed and just popped up, and floated out. Bones grabbed me by the collar and dragged me on the canoe. It was brilliantly awesome! I wanted to do it again but they said no. The spoil sports,' he said sadly, remembering and sulking a little.

'Haaa. So whose idea was it for you not to tell me that particular adventure?'

'Umm. Bones. She said you would never let me out again, ever, if you knew.'

'Haaa… So, was it that good?' he asked secretively, almost jealously.

Parker grinned now knowing his father wasn't angry but hugely impressed. 'Oh, Dad incredible. You just relax, go all floppy, hang on to the oar of course, and you float right out, easy, feels like you're on a fairground ride.'

'Cool.'

'Yeah, totally. Today was hard though, we had a really long car drive. We saw some poor people in the towns where the earthquakes were? Bones is a brilliant driver. We had to cross rivers with no bridges. We gave lifts to people and Bones gave them money and some food that we had with us. I gave some t shirts away to some boys, who had no clothes, Dad! Can you imagine? Terrible… I took a few pictures and videos to show my class and stuff, how bad they are suffering. Bones said to be discrete about taking pictures though. So I was, I didn't want to upset anyone, they were suffering enough.' Booth felt a rush of pride and admiration for his love and Parker, at their compassion and easy generosity.

'Very wise, Little man. Very wise. So, what are you up to now then?'

'Oh well, Bones is having a shower. I'm in next then bed. She wants to talk to you. She said you had a bad day?'

'Oh, well yes, a little, but I'm sooo much better now. I came back to Nok's and slept for most of the afternoon and evening. Had dinner and we sat in his garden chatting.'

'Cool, so you're ok?'

'Yeah fine, just missing throwing you over my shoulder, that kinda thing.' Parker grinned hard at his father's sweet humour.

'Haa. Ooo by the way, next year? Bones said you are definitely coming on holiday with us.'

'Yeah? Where we going?'

'That's what I asked, Bones said she didn't care, as long as she was with us. Isn't that sweet, Dad?'

'Hell yeah. Something to look forward to eh?'

'Yeah, I fancy India.'

'Haaa. We'll see.'

'Oooo. Here she comes. All clean and smelling like fruit. Have you noticed that about her?

'Actually I have, Parker. It's nectarines.'

'Humm. Very nice. I better go and leave you two to chat. I'll speak to you soon Dad, sweet dreams.'

'Night, night Parker, knuckles. Love ya.'

'Knuckles, love ya more, bye.'

There was a brief exchange between Parker and Bones, and clicks and rumbles down the line, as the hand set was passed from him to her. Then Booth heard her dulcet smooth tone caress his ear.

'Hellooo, Partner. Has your headache gone?' Bones was in a playful mood, and that made his head tilt and a smile creep slowly across his lips.

'You're so bad, Bones.'

'Booth, you have no idea how bad I can be. But you will.' Bones own grin was delicately smearing her plump lips, as she lay on her bed, a hand under her towel-covered hair, knees up and rolling them slowly from side to side.

'Oooo. Bones, steady on. Don't want to trash another bathroom today.'

'Haaa.' Her soft rumbling chuckle making him quiver. He knew he should change the subject and did.

'So sounds like you had a tough day?'

'Harr yes, fairly.' She sighed heavily, her voice low and deep. 'Parker was upset by what he saw, but we had a chat and he's ok now. He was very moved by the hardships of the region. In a good way though, Booth? He had all the right emotional responses. He is as empathetic as you. He was so generous too. Without me prompting, he handed out t shirts and some shorts to a family, we gave a lift too. The children were around his age. They were exceedingly grateful, it was quite moving to witness. Parker is such a wonderful boy, Booth, a credit to you and Rebecca, you should be so proud of him.'

'I am, Bones, and grateful to you for leading him through it. I'm proud of you too.'

'Thanks. We did share some moments, him and I. To be honest I'm exhausted, emotionally and physically. I think we will have a lazy day tomorrow. Recharge ourselves a little.

'Yeah you should. Have a lay in.'

'Humm. That's the plan. Breakfast in bed, I think.' Booth heard her rustle on the bed and sigh softly. Bones rolled onto her side curling into a foetal shape, staring out the picture window into the charcoal night.

'Lovely. So your itinerary says you're going around the lakes, then another long car ride, to the terracotta armies. Parker will love seeing that.'

'Yes I think so too. He's been talking about that quite a bit. I know a colleague who has been working there for several years and he has offered to give us a private tour. Show us some areas not open to the tourists yet. I'm sure it will be very educational and great fun for him.'

'You're spectacular you know?'

'Yes I am,' she said self mockingly.

'No you are, Bones.'

'Ok, enough flattery, Booth. So, three more days and we fly home.'

'Umm yeah. Life altering trip for the little man.'

'Yes, I think he's grown, definitely. He's so good with his photography too now, you know? Excellent. He has a real talent and flare. The camera was a brilliant idea, Booth.'

'Good, good. Awww crap, Bones. I can't wait to see you both.'

'Yeah. Us too…' Then she said softly, 'Seeley?'

'Yeah?' Touched by her calling him by his first name. Whatever was to come, he knew she was deadly serious.

'I would love to have a child with you. If our child grew up to be half as wonderful as Parker is. I'd be a complete, fulfilled, contented woman,' she whispered softly into his ear, her heart banging her ribs and eyes closing. When she went for the jugular she held nothing back and Booth could barely breathe suddenly.

'Oh, Tempe.' Tears sprang to his eyes. He closed them rolling his head back on the soft couch and sighed.

'Is it alright to tell you that, what I desire?' Bones asked tentatively.

'Mmmm, yes. That's my prayers answered, Tempe.' Bones could hear his voice crack and tremble on his words.

'Are you weeping?'

Booth could only nod and hum, he was so touched, 'Mmm.'

'I love you deeply, Seeley.'

'Love you so much more. We'll do it all, everything.'

'What would you like?'

'A girl.'

'That's good to know but I didn't mean that,' she said softly, he could hear the smile through her words.

'I don't understand,' he said, and sat up a little wiping his eyes, rolling to lay down along Nok's couch, on his side.

'Humm. I meant do you want, everything?' Bones asked slightly nervous. Which was becoming a habit of late with her.

'Like what, Bones?'

'Living together, marriage?'

'You'd consider marriage?' Booth asked incredulously. Bones was anti marriage, calling it an antiquated, out dated ritual in the past. So her offering that was mind bending. Although she had said recently, she had never found a reason to marry, maybe if she had a good reason she would.

'Yes. We should if we are going to have a child. I think it's best, don't you? Most cultures revere the family, two parents to care for their offspring. And of course there are your religious convictions to consider.'

Parker came out and put on his pyjamas, left his damp towel where it dropped, walked bleary eyed to Bones, kissed her cheek then slipped under the covers, rolling away from her. Obviously exhausted.

'Oh Bones, baby, only if you didn't feel trapped by it. I couldn't bear for you to feel that.' Bones grinned as Parker settled, watching him lovingly.

'No I wouldn't. You'd never make me feel that.' She stood up, picked up the wet discarded towel and walked into the bathroom, putting the towel neatly back where it had come from.

'Tempe?'

'Yes?' Walking back to the bed, finding her Boothy t shirt and pulling it on.

'You just proposed to me.'

'Did I? Oh.' Bones stood still for a second, then pulled back the covers slipping into the warm bed, snuggling down. There was a long pause.

Booth broke it with a chuckle.

'Haaa. You're freaking out now, aren't you?'

'Yes,' she said honestly.

'Do you wanna take it back?' Booth smiled wide. Seeing Nok come in, he acknowledged his entry with a high chin nod and a wink. Booth sat up giving Nok room to sit down. Nok handed Booth a bottle of beer, which he took a swig from.

'Umm. I. Umm. Err.' Dr. Brennan lost for words and conflicted was adorable, Booth mused.

'Haaa.' Booth looked to Nok, who grinned and quizzed him with his eyes. Booth gave a little shake of his head, implying he would tell him after what was transpiring between him and the doctor.

Bones chastised him, but couldn't shift the smile in her eyes. 'Don't laugh at me.'

'Sorry, but it's so cute. You getting all flustered, it's sexy,' he cooed sweetly.

'Sexy? You're insane FBI.'

'Oh yes! Crazy in love with you, for sure.' Nok huffed a chuckle and nodded, agreeing utterly with that.

'Excellent.' Then she sighed exhausted, saying, 'Seeley? I'm so tired, I've got to sleep.'

'Oh ok, I'll let you go. Is Parker out the shower yet?'

'Yes, he's already in bed asleep. He puts his head on the pillow and he's unconscious in moments, it's remarkable really.' She looked over to the sleeping boy, curled up under the sheets, mewing gently.

'Nice.'

'Hum. So we'll text when we can be bothered.' Bones changed the subject and made a funny, which Booth obviously appreciated.

'Haa. Ok. Love ya,' he said breezy, just about containing his ecstasy.

'Humm, lovely. Give Nok my best won't you?'

'Will do. Sleep tight.'

'Night, kiss, kiss.'

'Sweet Boothy dreams.'

'Umm. Night.' Bones closed the phone and her eyes and slept instantly.

Booth shimmered a delirious smile at Nok and said, 'I'm getting married.'


Tokyo airport concourse, nine thirty, 27th July. Arrivals gate.

Parker and Bones walked out the sliding doors, to see Nok beaming at them. Bones gave him a wave, leaning down and taking Parkers hand, she said, 'There he is, Parker.'

'Cool.' Parker was so excited, if not a little tired. They had spent the last eight hours travelling to Japan, leaving their Chinese adventure behind. His mind stuffed full of adventures, sight and sounds, new experiences and his education enhanced. His personality more rounded, his vocabulary wider, as well as his understanding and admiration for different cultures.

Parker walked straight up to Nok, bowed deeply and said, word perfect in Japanese. 'It is a honour and a privilege to finally meet you.' Nok bowed, his smile plastered from ear to ear.

He replied in English, 'You humble me by your respect and presence in my country, welcome to Tokyo.' Parker bowed deep again and looked to Bones, who was glowing with pride at him.

'Hi, Nok. Thanks for this.' She bowed deeply then gave him a hard hug and pecked his cheek.

'Come on. My car is outside.' Nok took her cabin bag as they hurriedly walked out to Nok's car. Which had its police lights on, flashing.

Bones laughed, Nok turned and smiled. 'Yes well, your time is short, is it not?'

Parker giggled highly excited, jumping in quickly, as they sped off through the city. Nok put his foot down and put on the siren too.

'You look extremely well, Bones. Very rested.'

'Don't know about that, Nok, I think I could do with a holiday to recover haaa.' Flashing him a charmingly beautiful smile. Parker huffed in amused agreement, looking out the windows at the city lights, flashing and twinkling back, his excitement almost unbearable. Bones was at the same pitch, but she hid it well. Almost.

'How is he?'

'Oh, not too bad. He was down today knowing you were going home. I will leave you three alone and return at one to take you back to the airport. I presume you have checked your bags through to Washington?'

'Yes all sorted, Nok. This is so good of you.'

'Don't mention it, please. It is my pleasure.' Nok turned off the motorway and weaved in and out of the splitting traffic, as he headed out the city towards the leafy suburbs.

'Feel free to use my home as you wish. You must want to freshen up after your flight. There is food and drink, just help yourselves.'

Bones smiled warmly, charmed by his consideration for their comfort. 'Thank you, Nok.' He just gave her a smile and turned off the siren and lights.

'Not far, Parker. Five minutes.' Nok glanced at the small boy via his rear view mirror. Bones reached back and squeezed his hand, flaring her eyes sweetly at his obvious delirium.

'I'm so excited. Do you think he will cry, Bones?'

'Probably,' said with certainty. Nok flicked her a glance she gave him a little pout.

The two travel companions' chests felt tight. Bones' hands twitched, she felt positively charged, like a thunder cloud. Strung impossibly tight. Her anticipation at seeing him in the flesh, almost too much to bear. She wanted to run, run fast to him. The closer they got, the more her heart ached.

The last twenty four hours had been a kind of sweet torture. Their exchanged messages and conversations, flashed through her mind constantly. His words of love, seduction and soul-filled letter.

The images of him pleasuring himself, herself, at a distance made her tremble and feel restless. She couldn't sit still. Her fingers fiddled with her white mid calf length, flared linen skirt. She knew it was a bad idea not to wear a bra under her flimsy ivory camisole blouse. However, at the time of dressing, she was thinking of travel comfort and not about the fact that her nipples were now blatant through the sheer material because of her emotional excitement.

Bones crossed her legs to relieve some of the tension pooling at her apex. She bit her lower lip, turning her head to look out the window.

Nok pulled up to a curb, two residences away from his property. He turned off the engine, then turned smiling to them. He pointed to his home.

'There, is my home. Walk around the back, through the garden. There is a maple tree, walk past that along the gravel path to the sliding door, it's open. You will be in the kitchen, he will be in there. Booth sits there for many hours in the evening, re-reading your messages and watching your video clips.' Bones felt her eyes fill suddenly. She looked to Parker who was close to tears too. Nok flashed them a sympathetic look, seeing them so touched by that.

'I shall return at one o'clock.' Bones leant over nodding, kissing his cheek.

'Thank you.' Nok bowed humbly. Bones stepped out of the car, took Parker's hand and her bag in the other. They walked across the street to Nok's house.

'Really quietly, Parker. Don't want to announce our presence too soon.'

'Haa No.' They walked quietly around the side of the bungalow, into the garden. Bones saw the beautiful old maple lit by a blue-sliver glow from the full moon. Then saw the stump that he had told her Booth sat on the first time they had been intimate via the telephone.

They crunched along the gravel path, trying to tip toe as they neared the back sliding door.

Bones leaned down, whispering in his ear, 'You go in first, Parker.' He nodded, as Bones drew the door aside slowly. Revealing Booth perched on a high stool, his back to them. Bones noted him in jeans and a t shirt, bare foot. He had his mobile in his hand and was obviously reading their messages. A half drunk bottle of beer for company.

Bones resisted the urge to run. It took all her strength to stand still. She rolled away, to stand to the side slightly out of his view if he turned. Parker held no compulsion to wait any longer, and cried out with the sweetest, exclamation,

'Daddy, Daddy, my Daddy!' Parker charged in, Booth spun, fell off the chair to his knees, as Parker jumped, flinging himself around his father. Booth clutched his son so tight, his biceps protested. Slamming his eyes shut to the delicious feel of his small frame and heart thumping in unison with his. Safe. Close. In his arms.

'Parker, oh God, Parker. Little man,' Booth waffled, leant back and looked into his son's shining but wet face, tears of joy trickled over his tanned cheeks. Then gripped him close again, his eyes instinctually closing.

Bones took a deep breath and stepped over the threshold, placing her bag down gently, her own tears falling, moved by witnessing the boy's reunion. She stood still and silent except for her heart beat, which she was sure they could hear it was pumping so hard. She quickly brushed off those tears and forced herself to swallow.

The realisation hit Booth like a Mack truck, that if Parker was here, then so too was Bones. He snapped his eyes open to see her standing like an angelic apparition in the doorway. Dressed in pristine white, beautifully setting off her tanned flesh. A wispy smile on her lips. They looked into each other for a moment that made time stop, as they exchanged words and thoughts.

'Bones.' Booth stood instantly, taking Parker the few meters towards her, where all three hugged in one mass of arms, smiles and tears. Bones felt herself finally breathe and relax.

'Booooth,' she sighed, placing her palm on his stubbly jaw. Booth pushed his face forward, mouthing his lips with hers. A warm wet, comforting, reuniting kiss. Bones groaned feeling like she was floating. She changed angle and slide her tongue between his lips.

His tongue met hers and the air crackled around them. Volts of charged particles fizzed up their spines, making them cling tighter and moan. They dueled relentlessly, trying to get deeper into one another.

Parker started to giggle charmingly, placing his hand over his eyes and turning his head away from their passionate kiss. Bones withdrew her tongue and kissed his wet lips again, resting her brow on his, and locked her gaze with him, letting a soft chuckle go.

Booth grinned wide seeing Parker's eyes hid, and hearing him chuckle at them.

'I can't believe you came. This is amazing, I'm so happy to see you.'

'So are we.' Bones kissed his lips once more stepping away, not too far though. Booth looked to Parker, pulling his palm off his eyes.

'S'ok little man, you can look now.' Wiping his son's eyes.

'Haaa. That was so cool. Did we surprise you, Dad?'

'Oh yeah! Brilliant surprise, best ever, Little man!'

'We've only come for a few hours though, Nok is taking us back to the airport at one,' Parker explained with a pout. Booth put him down but didn't let go his tiny hand. Booth took Bones' too and kissed the back of it. Understanding, he said, 'That will have to be enough then.'

Booth pulled them both into Nok's lounge and sat down with a flump, Parker sat between them, as Booth laced his fingers with Bones behind the small boy's head on the back of the couch. Bones couldn't take her eyes off him. She inspected his features, squeezing his hand hard. Which he reciprocated.

'Cool surprise. Whose idea?' he asked, looking to each of them in turn.

'Bones. She E mailed Nok five days ago, after she had an epiphany.' Both the adults looked stunned at Parker. His use of such a word knocking them sideways, taking Bones' breath away.

'Epiphany? Did I?'

'Yeah, Bones. What's in the glove, remember?'

'Oh, yes.'

'Sorry, hello? What?' Booth enquired, amused and charmed by their interaction and that they obviously understood each other perfectly.

'Bones got a feeling, Dad. That you needed to see us. So she asked me if I wanted to come and surprise you before we went back. She got your letter later, then made up her mind, rang Mum who said it was ok if I came home a day later. Then she E mailed Nok.'

'Wow. Well, I'm delighted to see you both.' He tapped his son's nose with his free hand. 'And so glad you had an epiphany.' He grinned sweetly at Bones, fingering her palm, rubbing his thumb pad over the smooth warm skin. Its path causing her breath to hitch. It was a delicious sensation and made her flush pink under her rather gorgeous tan. Which was not lost on Booth. He could see her almost melt into the couch. He felt his groin tighten a little, knowing she was just as aroused. Because she crossed her legs and straightened her back, but didn't break contact with his eyes or hand.

'Yeah, then we talked about the hand in the glove. I explained about her soul, she gets it now don't ya, Bones?' Booth knew the analogy of the hand in glove. He had explained it to his son some time ago, when he had asked a question about what happens when you die.

'Yep all sorted, thanks to you.' Bones leant in pecking Parker's head.

'Haa. So can you show us around, Dad? Nok's got a lovely home.'

'Sure. Would you like something to eat, drink?'

'Drink might be good thanks,' Bones said softly with a sweet smile. Booth got up not letting go of either of them. As he showed them around Nok's home. The bedroom Booth was sleeping in. And the art work which adorned the walls. They ended up in the kitchen. Parker let go his Dad's hand and climbed up onto the high stool his father had been sitting on when they arrived. Being free, Booth eased the willing Bones into his chest and wrapped his arms around her waist. His hips caressing hers, she smiled and put her arms around his neck, caressing his nape with her thumbs softly.

'Hey you,' he said with such sweetness, she leant in, rolling her nose tip around his anti-clockwise, her eyes focused mistily on his.

'Hey you,' she countered, delighted by the feeling of being in his embrace again.

They just held close, staring for a few moments till Parker said, 'Drink, Dad? Come on. You and Bones can kiss all you want when I have a shower.'

'Well thank you, Parker, very generous of you,' Booth said, heavy with sarcasm. As he leant over rubbing his hair affectionately, Parker chortled.

'Beer, Saki, tea?' Booth asked, and still Bones and Booth held close. Their hands wandering innocently, just feeling each other. Reacquainting themselves gently. Booth snuck a glimpse down at her cleavage, not able to resist or miss it, she did look stunning and edible. Her nipples pert and tenting the silk of her top. Bones grinned slowly seeing his eyes drift and wander. And when his eyes trailed back up to hers, she flared her eyes at him. If any other man had done that so openly, she would have knocked them on their ass. But this was Booth, he was hers now, and clearly she was his. She gave him full reign, willingly.

'Tea, would hit my spot.' Her choice of words and sentiment was pure lust to Booth ears. He swallowed hard and lost his smile. Bones could feel his member twitch in his jeans and that made her eyes look to his lips and up again.

'Umm yeah. Tea. Lovely.' Booth tried to sound sober. But he was getting drunk on her. She smelt of ripe sweet fruit, she felt soft and hot in his palms, as they gently slid up her spine to her neck, then over her shoulders. Bones wanted to push him up against the nearest surface and grind herself against that bulge in his jeans.

'What about you, Parker?' Booth managed, Bones eased him backwards and bumped the tall fridge. Booth readjusted his feet and rubbed his crutch into her, barely. Watching her eyes flutter closed and part her lips the tiniest amount. Her hands slipping down his wide back to his hips.

'Tea is good. Thanks.' Parker pulled out his camera and found the photos he wanted to show his father. He became engrossed instantly, oblivious to the adults erotic glances and touches.

Booth reached over Bones' shoulder and flicked the kettle on. This did two things, made firmer contact with her slippery core and secondly, she drew in a deep breath, dropping her face onto his shoulder. Booth stilled and leaned back slowly, feeling her body tighten.

'You ok, Bones?' he whispered in her ear. The words leaving a warm tingle there.

'Um hum. Yes.' Bones was trying to be in control but was clinging on by her cuticles. He knew she was fibbing. He trailed his lips around close to her soft cheek, to her lips. Barely touching them. Bones slipped her thumbs into his belt hooks and pulled him closer.

They exchanged delicate mouthy kisses as the kettle boiled, getting louder as the water within started to rattle the pot. Steam began to pour out. Booth licked her lips, tasting her. Bones sunk back a tad licking where he just had. This was a delicious torture for them both. And extraordinarily erotic.

'Here you go, Dad, look at this?' Parker instructed, unaware of the desire in the adults. Booth stepped back, flicked a glance down to his bulge and smiled up at Bones, who cocked a brow. She giggled softly, pecked his lips and spun. Releasing him to make the tea. Booth turned to his son, sitting quickly. Parker showed him his photos, explaining the shots and recounting his and her adventures.

Bones busied herself making all of them tea, finding the kitchen well laid out and easy to find things within it. The boys laughed and talked about the pictures and people held within. Bones placed the cups of tea beside them all.

Booth took her around the waist, holding her close as she slid her palm up and down his back. Parker talked and explained excitedly. Bones leant over Booth, eventually half sitting, half standing, leaning on his lap. Sipping her tea, Booth cuddled her around her narrow waist while she listening patiently to Parker telling of their adventures.

It was so natural to hold each other, to be this close. They didn't need to say it. They just enjoyed it. Bones had always suspected he would be a tactile, affectionate man. She was not wrong. He was gentle, demonstrative and held her as much as he could, caressing her back delicately, as he listened to Parker.

He often planted delicate kisses on her shoulder or back, as Parker explained the photos. Booth was engrossed but didn't forget the woman in his arms. He kissed and touched Parker often too. Bones was so glad she had made the decision to come.

Parker yawned then laughed, shaking his head.

'Wow, so tired Sorry,' he apologised.

'Don't apologise little man. You've had a long day. Exciting day, hell exciting two weeks! At least you don't go back to school for another two weeks. You can catch up on your sleep then.'

'Yes. Suppose. I wish that this holiday wouldn't end. I've had an amazing time with Bones. We've had so much fun, haven't we?'

'Yes! Loads of fun.'

'Yeah, falling in rapids and stuff,' Booth said casually, Parker blushed and Bones stiffened in Booth's arms, looking to his eyes.

'Who told you?'

'Haa. Parker let it slip the other night. That day when I was so tired and you cheered me up.' Booth flared his eyes at her cheekily, knowing she got his naughty recollection. Bones giggled shaking her head, and wagged a finger at the blushing Parker.

'That was supposed to be ours, Little man?' she admonished cutely. Parker chuckled jumping down, running around to her, hugging her midriff, kissing her stomach. Bones leant down and kissed the top of his head warmly.

'Sorry.' Then he looked up to her and said cheekily, 'I shouldn't tell Dad that I finally saw your boobies the other night then?' Parker giggled mischievously. Booth and Bones gasped in horror, then Bones grabbed the small boy, tickling him, till he rolled to the floor in hysterics with wiggling legs.

'You bad boy! That was definitely a secret, you promised! You're in so much trouble. Bad, bad, Parker.'

'HAAA! HAAA quits! quits!!' Booth watched on, elated at their play fight. It was adorable to see. Booth jumped up, picked up Parker flinging him casually over his shoulder, to his squeals of delight. Booth spun him around and told him off too.

'How dare you see Bones' boobies. That's so naughty!'

'Haaa. Wasn't my fault. Haaa. I needed the toilet and she was. HAA! In the shower.'

'When you gotta go, you gotta go, Booth?' Bones eased sweetly. 'I let him come in.' She grinned charmingly.

'AAAA! So you saw her naked??' Booth asked absolutely aghast.

'Haaa. Yes! Put me down!'

Bones giggled, clearing the cups to the sink and started to wash them up. Booth let Parker down, and they raced around the central breakfast bar and chairs, Booth trying to catch him but having little luck. Bones' grin was fixed through her task.

Parker darted out into the garden at a fair pace, Booth shot out too. Bones gave them ten minutes of time before she went out to join them. They were still chasing around the maple. Booth caught him, they rolled around on the grass in fits, kisses and cuddles.

Bones sat gracefully on the tree stump looking up through the whispering leaves of the maple, some of them falling, reminiscing. Booth caught her memory in her eyes and stilled. Parker smiled knowingly to his father.

'You can kiss Bones now, Dad. I'm going for a shower.' Booth looked down at his son and smiled.

'Thanks, Little man.'

'No problem.' Parker was up and off with a charming skip. He closed the back door leaving them alone and looking at one another. Bones titled her head, smiling wide.


'You came under that tree two weeks ago. I heard you. I made you.' Bones felt her desire slam back, like a revolving door in her face. She closed her eyes looking up.

'I was just remembering,' she said tenderly, a little shaky. Booth got up and walked over to her, standing close. She took his hand and looked at the fresh scar from when he cut it in the toilet the other day. She ran her tongue around its circumference, then placed an open lipped kiss on it. Booth hummed at the action, kissing his injury better.

Pulling him to her, Booth sunk to his knees, shuffling closer, 'You can't see my breasts now, Booth, but you can touch them,' Her tone deep and sultry, like the night. Booth swallowed and leant in and kissed her. Hard and deep, forging forward with his tongue, to swoop around it and suck on it a little. Bones gasped and grabbed the back of his head, pulling him deeper. The flame given a blast of oxygen to feed it and it tore upwards in both of them.

They both groaned and retreated. Shocked at the reaction the kiss had on both of them. Booth's member at full height and width already. Bones opened her legs pulling him closer, held his face searching for something.

'What?' he asked concerned. She dropped a palm, took his hand and placed it under her blouse on her stomach.

'Touch me.' Booth felt his ardour peak, feeling her stomach twitch. He took no time in complying and lifted his hand to her breast and squeezed slowly, firmly. Bones gasped and clamped her lips on his, then parted them, slipping her tongue back into him, tickling the roof of his pallet with its tip. He wriggled and squeezed hard, puckering his fingers, to pinch her already full, hard nipple.

'Aaa God,' Bones muttered and delved back in, his eyes burning her retinas. Not wanting to miss anything about this woman's reactions to him. She glared right back. His eyes almost wild, ravenous, eating her up.

His hand slid over her cleavage to the other breast, and palmed that too. Her breasts warm and compliant to his learning touch. Bones reached down to his jean-encased erection and clenched it.

'Arhh, Bones.'

There was a moment when the passion turned from tentative to sure. Booth took his hand off her and his mouth from hers, she stilled, concerned and held her breath. His eyes searched hers. He flicked his hand under her linen skirt reaching for her pussy. The second he made contact, felt the heat and wetness, saw her quiver, her palm clenched on his shoulder nipping his skin, Booth muttered fast, 'Fuck, Bones, you're so beautifully wet.'

'Do it, Booth. Make me come again.' Again he complied instantly, hooking the material aside and thumbed her nub. Bones groaned, shifting forward, taking up residence inside his mouth with her tongue. Whining her moans, and rising desire into him. Bones was feral, sucking his tongue, gripping his head to her. She broke the kiss and bit down his neck, then kissed the area, soothing the bite mark.

'First time, like this…' she muttered. 'Later… Slow…' Interspersing the words with wet, hungry kisses of his face, neck and ears lobes, remembering their phone conversation.

'Yes, oh God, Bones.' He pulled his thumb off her and smiled.

'Booth?' She glared at him, pissed off, then he licked his fingers, wet from her. Bones rolled her head and eyes seeing him do that. Feeling him stiffen, his whole body rigid and ready for take off.

'Taste too good, Bones.' With that admission, he flung the skirt over his head, followed her scent and heat, homed in, then sucked hard on her pussy, taking her whole labia into his mouth. Bones had no time to control her cry, the sensation too powerful and shocking.

'Yessss!' Booth reached up blindly and sought out her mouth, covering it with his palm. She moaned, wriggled her buttocks, her hands went to his covered head. Pushing him closer, needing him deeper. Gripping his torso flanks with her knees.

'Ssshaarrr, Boooth…' Bones mumbled under his palm, clenched over her mouth, to stifle her passionate entreaties. Booth went crazy with his tongue, knocking her from left to right, nudging the little pip up and down, all points of the compass. 'Booth, yes, oooh.' All stifled, the words felt hot and moist on his palm.

She suddenly had a thought other than sensation; he was good, really good at this. She couldn't get him deep enough. She pushed him off and stood, making her mind up, dragging him up from under his arms. Booth looked confused but totally amused at her manic expression. He licked his lips seductively.

'Baby? Gonna need to do that again properly, really soon?' Booth seeped with a cocky smile.

'Sit,' she instructed breathlessly, not waiting for him to comply. Turning him and pushing him down, she was straddling his legs almost instantly. She undid his jean button, while simultaneously kissing him deeply.

Booth hands sought out her flesh under the linen and pulled her panties aside while she undid his zip and eased him free. It all happened so fast, instinctually and effortlessly. She lifted herself a little, not breaking the ravenous kiss. They united.

Bones' breath hitched as she took him inside. Booth did indeed slip in easily. The glide down and inwards, felt like they were sinking in quick sand. The grains swallowing them up in its silky trap. Squeezing their lungs free of air. Their mutual exhales drifted off on the breeze. The gorgeous moon-lit maple, dropped its leaves around them like confetti.

'Finally,' she whispered breathlessly. The word's meaning inadequate, the tone empty and cold compared to the sentiment of it. It was said as her liberation. To express the culmination of years of suppressed devotion, craving, longing, and love.

She opened her eyes to see him gently smiling back. Her smile grew to match his. There was a moment of stillness and understanding before they lost control and broke free all restraint, lost the tender look to replace it with a lust that burned in their bodies. She pounced on his mouth and dragged his face and mouth to hers.

Bones knew he was not deep enough, nowhere near enough. She shifted her position while Booth gripped her buttocks, understanding. He needed to be so deep he couldn't leave. He pulled her in to him, hard. Hoping, praying this action would make her his forever. He never wanted to be anywhere else.

That did it. He knew it. He was wedged, he was ensnared. Her pussy walls trembled and pulled on him severely. 'Oh, Bones,' he mumbled overcome by the pull of her, kissing her throat. He could feel her delicious elixir trickle onto his scrotum, as she thrust her hips matching his own ferocious thrusts.

His hand ran up her spine to her head, her hair slipping between his fingers. Then to Booth's astonishment, she rolled her head back into his palm with full weight, opened her mouth and oozed his name, climaxing. With eyes closed and relaxed features. 'Seeeeleeey,' she purred, not in lust but a slow quiet sigh of deliverance. Letting herself experience the bewildering bliss of release.

He eased in to her burning moisture, his now gentle thrusts, prolonging her orgasm as much as he could. She stilled and let a low sigh leave her lips. She opened her eyes to his then giggled, and chuckled, shaking her head.

That was not the reaction he was expecting. He smiled confused.

'Haaa. Oh boy. Sorry.' Booth shook his head wondering why she was apologising. She was a wondrous sight to see.

'Why you sorry, Bones?'

'That was a little quick. Haaa. I've never... so fast before.'

'Arrr I see. You done?' he said softly, smoothing her hair out of her eyes, tenderly.

'No.' Kissing his lips tenderly, she looked around to the house, then back to him. 'We've got a little more time, Parker loves his long lazy showers.' Booth grinned at her insight.

'Yeah. We got time.' Booth flexed his hips, easing into her flaring his eyes.

She cooed on his lips, 'Hum lovely Seeley. You're so wide, great girth.' Bones flared her eyes excitedly, starting to give them a rhythm. Matching his gentle in out motion.

Booth nodded fast, his throat constricting a little, his passion rising seeing that smile, which made him taut and unleashed his animalistic tendencies. Bones grinned knowing him now, understanding, 'Come on, Seeley, go a little wild for me.' Booth snapped his eyes to hers checking, she was sure.

'Fuck me,' she confirmed tight to his lips, flicking her tongue on his upper lip once, hard. It was sultry, disgustingly sexy and wanton, Booth had no resistance.

'Holy Shit, Bones.' Her smile and eyes flaring into him. Green light given, he began to pull her deep on to his pulsing long organ, making little grunts with each deep thrust, which she found adorable. Bones flicked her hand under her skirt, and found her nub again, caressing it. They never broke eye contact, their caresses and kisses accompanied their synchronicity of movements.

'That's so hot, so hot,' he mumbled, feeling her touch herself.

'I'm, Booth. Oh Seeley, so, I'm…' she muttered incoherently. This woman's climaxes, were like buses, once one came along, then the rest followed in quick succession. The observation popped into Booth mind randomly, and flew out again.

'Jesus, really? Oh God.' Booth was being hard, rough, passionate. Her mouth fell on his, as her orgasm threatened again. Alarmingly large suddenly.

Dragging her mouth away to breathe, she said, 'I have multiples, Seeley,' explaining breathlessly, answering his own airless question. He flared his eyes, grunting hoarsely, jamming himself in her as hard as he could, as deep as he could. Her admission fuelling his desire to make her climax hard again, and treat himself to a second helping of her.

She had made him lose his culture and composure. He was an animal just needing satisfaction with her. Wanting to fuck her so hard, till she cried out his name again and only his, for eternity.

Her eyes began to blur. and she bit down on his lower lip in her passion. Booth growled savagely, feeling his lip puncture with her incisor entry into his tender flesh. They both felt the hot sticky metallic taste of blood on their tongues. Bones mumbled her lust at him, kissing the small bloody nip she had made on him.

'Love you, love you. Come up me, come, inside,' her sweet plea filling his open mouth. Booth surrendered to her body. He gripped everything, feeling the surge from his scrotum erupt up and out into her. Their eyes locked as he spilled into her. Heating her up, her own orgasm drawing the fluid upwards even further.

'Yeees! Oh, yes.' Her exclamation and words were for feeling his semen fill her. A woman knows the empowerment of that moment, the satisfaction it gives and its benevolent purpose.

Booth relaxed a little, however Bones felt no retreat from him. They panted down off the high, pecking softly at each other's lips. He was still hard, fat, and deep inside her.

The aroma of sex hung between them, heavy and addictive. 'I need you again, Bones,' he confessed.

'Lovely,' she said unconcerned, and began to move again, giggling sultrily.

'Oooh, Bones incredible. You feel so hot. You're squeezing Everard, feels so good…'

'He's is sensational. Wonderful staying power. I'm hugely impressed, Booth,' she whispered to his ear, nibbling on the fleshy lobe. Booth slid his hand under her skirt, to her fingers caressing herself. She stilled her fingers. 'You want to have a go?' She cocked a perfectly shaped eyebrow at him.

'Yes please, do you mind?'

'Why would I mind? Do with me what you will. I'm yours.' More kisses and finger tip touches, slipped over her skin. His affection wonderful, although he was still pumping her hard.

'Oh, Bones, I love you. When we get back, we'll make slow love, ok, comfortable love?'

'Haaa comfortable? Okay, Sounds perfect. Right now I just need this, this, this… Oh…' Booth's member hitting and caressing her sweet spot, causing her to constrict, then strike free. The tenderness of his thumb on her swollen sensitised nub, sending the ripples out to make her shake in his arms.

'What? Oh God… Yes.' Booth recognised the signs, the pull on his member, the tight burning sensation of her internal clit massaging his ridged glands.

'Cli… maxing, again oh, oh, oh, Seeeleey.' Bones was gone again, slamming her eyes shut, falling into his chest, wrapping her arms around him clinging to him like a life preserver. Booth thrust up high, lifting her too, as he blew again, like Mount Etna. Molten hot meeting her upper walls. The slickness of their lovemaking now oozing down and out. 'Oooh,' Bones sighed again. Coming together was certainly the best way for love making to end, she just decided.

They both sat still. Wrapped around each other. Waiting for their bodies to recover.

'When we get home, Bones, we'll do this right,' he said weakly. Bones lifted her head looking into his deep tender eyes, her hands framing his face.

'There was nothing wrong about this, Booth?' she said, easing him gently.

'Yeah, but not very romantic,' he said apologetically.

She titled her head, then with a little pout she said, 'Look where we are, Booth? Under a maple of majestic proportions, the stars, a stunning full moon, bathed in its ghostly light. The breeze is warm and whispering. With the leaves falling gently around us… Just because we went a little crazy and vigorous, doesn't meant it wasn't romantic? We knew we would be like this, our first time. Satisfying our need for one another. I think this is the most romantic place I've ever made love.'

'Yeah?'

'Yes. I need to shower, got Boothy juicy all over.' She grinned wide pecking his lips, but he gave her a pout.

'What's the matter?' Bones enquired gently, seeing his frown.

'I don't want you to go, Bones. Don't leave yet.'

'Oh Booth, Parker will be…' He captured her mouth kissing her again, she relaxed into his lips and the delicate motion of his caressing tongue. The kiss went on and on. They changed angle and depth often, exploring one another gently, getting to know one another properly.

Bones withdrew her tongue and grinned at him saying, 'I've got to bathe, Booth?' pleading with him gently, caressing his jaw tenderly. Bones saw him nod and relax, drop his head a little.

His ache returning. It was over. He felt suddenly very emotional. His eyes burned, he turned his head away. Bones eased herself off his organ, which was still solid. Bones felt something snap inside. The chain that had been forged between them, the link broken, the two pieces slipped back and sunk to the ground, the tension now ebbing away. Something so strong shouldn't break.

Bones stood, took his face in her hands. 'Booth, soon we will be together, we will,' she whispered, holding her hand out. 'Come on, let's check on, Parker.' Booth looked down at his sparkling erection and then to her with a cooked smile. Bones grinned wide, understanding his expression. 'Ok, I'll check on Parker, you go shower, haa.'

'Ok.' He nodded solemnly.

Bones found Parker showered and rolled into a ball, redressed on Nok's couch, fast asleep. She smiled seeing him curled up. She drew down the throw and placed it over him gently. She returned to the kitchen, then she heard the shower go on. So she walked to the door, put her hand on the handle, taking a full breath, she opened it.

Booth turned to see her, he was naked, toned, wet and glistening. He had bite marks and small love bites over his neck and shoulders, evidence of her passion and need for him. His lower lip a little swollen from her bite. He was marked with old scars and bullet holes, the body of a brave protector. He was handsome, strong and still fully erect. It was probably the most erotic vision she had ever seen. Her lightning fast mind made up she closed the door quietly, turning the lock. Then stood outside the clear glass shower door, her eyes fixed on his. He didn't move from under the stream of water, just stared into her.

'Parker's asleep,' she said softly, then lifted off her blouse without preamble. Booth breath stopped, seeing her naked breasts, their full roundness, beautiful globes of flesh adorned with the sweetest red nubs. They were tight and lifting her breast slightly. 'We have a couple of hours, Booth.' She reached behind her back and unzipped her skirt, stepping out of it, then toed off her flat sandels. No puritan modesty here, Booth mused, ecstatic by her lack of it. He thought her a magnificent creature.

Seeing Booth's eyes travel down and around her torso, her flat stomach to her flare of her hips, she could feel the heat of his gaze on her skin. She could see his organ throb, bump his stomach, pulsing. Bones staggered a little with her desire to be inside him, he inside her.

Bones slipped her panties over her thighs and knees, taking them off her feet. She walked to the glass door, her eyes still locked on his.

'I think we should make love now.' She was much more confident than him. Booth's Adams apple bobbed and his lips parted slightly. Her body curving, billowing in all the right places.

'Tempe? You're strikingly beautiful, you are, you're Aphrodite, a fucking goddess…' Bones drew a deep breath touched by his words of worship. She felt her eyes burn. She swallowed too, trying not to lose her emotional control. Booth was making that very difficult right now.

Their sexual desire had been sated, but not their passion. He reached for her hand, as she stepped in close to his body. It radiated heat and love. Finally they were stripped down, flesh to flesh, nothing between them.

The hot water felt cool, nothing compared to the heat of the combined flesh of the two new lovers. The steam rose from the droplets, as they splashed over them and around their feet.

Booth took her face in his palms, holding her as if she was a delicate irreplaceable treasure. Precious. He placed his lips on hers, then stopped and pulled back, smiled, then went back down and kissed her again. Bones ran her hands around his hips to his waist and up his spine, splaying her palms and fingers out across his shoulder blades, and eased him to her. With slow deliberate movements, they caressed.

His tongue slipped delicately along her lower lips then back, she parted her lips releasing a soft sigh. Then he was inside her, seeking out her tongue. She staggered, he was so tender and gentle. Not like they had been earlier. This was so much more intense and slow. Her hands moved higher to his hair, she ran her fingers through it. Simultaneously trailing her hands to his face and jaw, caressing his ears and throat.

'Humm,' Booth hummed, shifting his feet. Bones felt him apply pressure to her hips to turn, so she did, into the water.

Booth stepped behind her and wrapped his arms around her slim waist. She turned her head around and looked into his eyes. 'You ok? he asked gently, she nodded, her hands caressing what flesh she could of his. Booth smoothed his hands up her stomach. He caressed under her breasts, resting his chin on her clavicle. Watching her body tremble, feeling her use him for a crutch, emotionally and physically.

Leaning back into him a little. Her arms went up again, her hands caressed his head and face. He turned her face towards him, as he kissed her lips again.

The kisses soft, wet mouthy and utterly sensuous. 'You're my world, Tempe, I'm so happy.' Bones moaned, wanting to turn and connect them. But he resisted her. 'Sshh. I want to trace you, learn you, memorise it all, indulge me, Tempe,' he begged a little.

Bones nodded, she couldn't have wished he would have been such a perfect lover. His sensitive touch excited her flesh. Her body quivered in his strong but tender arms. His hands moved over her skin, the hot water making the progress effortless and slick. His palms on each breast, gentle but firm enough that she whimpered. Closed her eyes and felt her knees buckle. He sensed her problem, excited by it. He held her safe to his torso.

'I won't let you fall,' Booth whispered in her ear, as she turned her head to kiss him again, with a nod, showing she did trust him. His kisses trailed down her neck and along her shoulder.

'You're beautiful, Bones. So beautiful. I've loved you for so long.' One hand slid downwards towards her belly, then further, haltingly.

'Oh, oh,' she muttered, knowing where his hand was going. She couldn't do anything about it. She wanted it, needed his touch like air or water. Booth cupped his hand, while still kissing her open aroused mouth, pooling hot water in it, then rinsed their love making away, bathing her gently.

'Oh, Booth,' she sighed again, touched by his kindness. Booth repeated it several times, tenderly. Then slipped his fingers over her silken lips, she jerked in his arms at the erotic touch.

'You're so sensitive. It's why you come so fast, yeah?' he asked and answered his own question.

'Umm. Yes. I can control it but I didn't want to earlier. I wanted to feel so good, after feeling so bad, for so long.'

'Oh Bones, I understand. Just be yourself with me. You're perfection.' Bones rolled her head back onto his shoulder. His lips found hers and they kissed slowly. Booth's hands working slowly and softly, one on her breasts, the other slowly up and down her labia, then he whispered softly feeling her tension mounting.

'Wanna come for me?' he asked so sweetly she almost cried. Feeling his cock gently throbbing on the small of her back, her nipples ached and her pussy pulsed. He was everywhere at once.

'Yes,' she said nodding feebly, unable to say anymore. Everything was fading away, losing clarity and definition. All she could do was feel.

Booth whispered, urging her to do as he requested, 'Open your wings, Tempe.' Bones did, pushing her feet out wider, trusting him completely.

She gasped as his slick delicate finger circled her little pip so slowly she jerked her torso forward and gasped. One hand reaching for the wall to hold her up, trying to find purchase by gripping the slippery tile. Booth pulled her back to his chest, holding her tight and safe. Booth bent his knees and slid up her, in one long deep thrust.

'Oooooh! Boooooth!' Bones felt out of control and loved it. She had given up herself up to her lover. Trusted him completely and the effect was blinding. Shattering. Astonishing.

Bones gasped for air, shaking uncontrollably in his warm strong arms. He whispered in her ear, 'Beautiful, stunning, gorgeous, my Bones. Love you, adore you, Tempe.' As her quakes turned her legs to jelly, her head lolled on his shoulder. Her arms now limp by her sides.

Booth could see she had relinquished control to him and just trusted. His eyes leaked at that knowledge. Bones felt the tears on her cheeks disappear in the water of the shower. The rapture prolonged by him filling her completely. Putting something she required to be whole, inside her so tenderly. The experience felt truly extraordinary.

He let her settle and calm. Withdrawing slowly from her. Placing a symmetrical collection of kisses over her shoulder, then the same, along the line of her neck and throat.

'Outstanding…' Bones said softly. Proud she managed a compliment. It was the least he deserved. She knew they would be good but this was excruciatingly fantastic.

'I marked you, I'm sorry,' he said softly. Seeing a love bite on her lower neck, obviously deposited from his mouth earlier. She swallowed and shook her head.

'I bit you, we're even.' Her tone gentle, uncaring that she was marked as his property. He felt her regain her leg strength. Booth turned her again slowly and gently eased her back to the wall, where she placed her palms flat against it the cool of the tiles, causing a rash of gooseflesh but cooling her down pleasantly. Booth ran his palms down her body, rested them on her hips, then sank slowly to his knees.

'Oh, God.' Bones gushed, rolling her head. Knowing what his intention was and that thought made her tremble all over again. When he had kissed her there earlier, she had almost lost her mind. She was way past that already. He looked up, the darkest hungriest gaze she had ever seen peered back into her.

He eased her legs out a little, helping her, as her thighs trembled. Booth slid his arm around her waist, tilting her pelvis out a little.

'Booth, oh God, oh God.' She looked almost panicked at the tension returning so quickly. Booth nuzzled her stomach then she felt a hot tongue dart out and trail its heat lower, in a pattern which drove her almost insane. Her hands gripped his head. Bones forced herself to watch as he flicked around her navel.

'Ah! Yes so, so good. So good…' Then lower and slower he went. Her hands clenching in his thick short hair. 'Booth, oh Seeley, Seeley.' Bones didn't know what she meant or why she was saying anything. She was almost having an out of body experience. There watching, but not there.

His tongue slid slow and long downwards over her nub and came back up just as slowly, curving to lick her up. He closed his mouth and swallowed her essence, trembling himself. Bones looked on in astonishment, as he pumped his shaft at the same time. Multi-tasking gallantly. Putting most men to shame.

He laid the flat of his tongue on her clit, letting its heat seep into it, then held still. Bones couldn't stand still however, she flexed her hips, and he groaned, squeezing her buttock and pumping his cock faster. She realised he wanted her to move. So she did, Bones rode her lover's tongue, as he grunted and teased at her tiny rosy bud.

The tip of his tongue was exquisite, soft and attentive, and could flicker the senses out of her, till all that was left was the thunderous storm heading right for her. She was trapped and couldn't dodge it or outrun it. She daren't.

This was the most outrageous sensation, erotic cunnilingus she had ever received. Visually highly evocative; seeing him masturbate was such an aphrodisiac. The hot water cascading over them both. Steam rising, the heady scent of sex, Booth and her, invading all her senses. Booth must of've felt it too, as he mumbled, and thrust his cock through his fist, harder.

Booth watched, eyes up, as Bones grit her teeth, scrunching his hair up in her fists. He pumped his cock hard and fast, waiting for her to orgasm before he let go.

His tongue was his best bit of him, Bones suddenly thought before she had no thoughts at all. Boom! Like the lightning hitting the tree in the terrifying storm. Her blood ignited, cracked her open, exploding her outwards, her palms banged flat against the wall behind her. Bones tore up in flames, the ecstasy consuming her like the fire had the trees.

'Seeleleeyharrr yearrsssuummmaarrh' If that wasn't a word, it should be, it was poetry to Booth. A sonnet. His doctor Bones was worthy of the Bard, surpassing him even.

Booth released, shooting a stream of hot semen, that spurted onto her knee and right thigh, his ejaculation so fierce. He groaned and held on to her. Seeing her about to fall, her legs giving out, he grabbed her around her waist, and brought her down gently to lay across him. They slumped to the bathtub side. They lay still for a few moments, two stunned bodies. Gasping for air and shocked by the immaculate sensations that charged around their bodies.

'Are you… I. Was, umm…' Bones tried again, her higher brain functions off still, and her mouth refused to do as she wanted. Booth kissed her cheek, smiling, amused by her inability to form an articulate sentence. 'Are you trying to kill me, Seeley?'

'Haaa,' His soft chuckle charming her, she opened her eyes to look at him, the water spraying their hot bodies, dousing them down.

She caressed his thighs tenderly, kissing his sweet features. He closed his eyes with a gentle smile. 'Booth, this is ridiculous, Everard's insatiable…' she said astonished, as his member pulsed against his defined lower six pack.

'Appropriate nickname, don't you think?' he offered rather cheekily, if not proudly.

'Haaa. Yes, very pertinent.' Bones took the quiet opportunity to inspect and play with Everard. Her touch delicate and calm. Learning his shape and mentally noting his girth and length measurement. Like a true anthropologist. 'You're perfect, Everard, just lovely.'

Bones was talking to Everard as if he was a separate being, 'Lovely width. That's what hits my G spot, and made me climax so fast earlier. And this little ridge? Wooboy. You're definitely a keeper.' Her fingers trailing up and down his full length. She leant down and kissed the crown, slowly sliding her lips over his tip, mouthing him softly. Then another gentle kiss.

'Haaaa' Booth chuckled, kissing her hair. Squeezing her to him. 'You're crazy woman,' he chastised sweetly, enchanted. Bones looked into his face, seeping love and smiles from her features.

'Crazy for you… I haven't got the energy now, Booth, but when I have, I promise, I'll return the wonderful love you made to me,' Bones said sincerely. He nodded, believing her, never doubting her promise.

'Once more, Bones. Before we have to separate. Once more?' Booth pleaded. Bones nodded smiling softly. Sensing his need, her own need.

Booth picked her up to stand then, lifted her under her tight buttocks leaning her against the wall, under the shower completely. Amazed by his strength but delighted by his passion and his matching her own libido.

'You're gonna come so hard, Tempe, your bones will crumble to dust,' he said handsomely. She did think it was possible after what she had just experienced. He had brought her so close to something inexplicable, she didn't doubt his words.

'Looking forward to it,' she said a little nervously, as he slipped up her, then let her drop a little. Booth leant in, kissing her frantically, while holding her up. Pumping his hips in, up and high, deep probing penetrations, which sucked her breath out of her lungs with their power. Bones clung on for dear life. 'Love you, love you.' Breaking the kiss for an instant to tell her. Then back into her mouth, all the while grunting hard on the up stroke. He hitched up her thighs, placing one foot on the side of the tub. She had an idle thought that she may have a little trouble walking after this. But it dissipated like smoke on the breeze, as he began to create a remarkable sensation at her apex.

'Seeley, Seeley.' Booth swivelled his hips on the return thrust to caress her clitoris. Creating a fascinating rhythm that had her whimpering. Mewing in his mouth, clawing his back, gripping her free leg around his thrusting, svelte hips. Booth gasped a breath. She huffed out constantly, the pressure to scream was almost primitive. The orgasm they were to exchange was going to be gigantic. They could both feel the energy and power of it.

Bones gripped her core on him tightening around him. Wanting him to join her. To be together when they felt the rapture.

'Oh! Tempe..' He threw his head back, losing his rhythm instantly, because what she was doing to him, felt remarkable.

'Love you.' Bones stiffened in his arms, a little scared. His eyes pierced hers. She got lost in them, he in her. Bones found her niche and stayed focused on it. Then she wasn't scared anymore.

Bones walls liquefied, as he poured into her again. Watching one another orgasm, with such love in their hearts.

They crashed to the floor. Finally spent. Shell shocked. Their need and desire quenched, for the moment at least.

Booth flicked off the cooling water for a few moments, as they held each other in silence, except for the ragged breaths and drips of water into the drain, and the gentle thudding of vital organs against sternums.

'Tempe?' Booth said softly. Bones knew exactly what he was asking.

'Yes. I've never.'

'Me neither.'

'It's possible.' Bones squeezed him warmly, pecking the neck she was snuggled into.

Booth grinned wide. 'Vindicated,' he said, 'Obviously.'

'I love you, Seeley,' she whispered heartfelt. Booth grinned enormously unseen by her and made a funny.

'Knuckles?' Lifting them up to her.

Bones started to laugh feebly, then tapped her knuckles with his, 'Haaa. Fool.'

Coming hard? Well yes, she did, so did he. But the real secret was out. The pristine crystal glass was brim full.


The airport farewell was not sad or tearful, but happy. With the promise of a real future together when they finally got back home.

'Two weeks, Booth. We did four,' she said, holding him around the waist delicately. Staring tenderly into his fathomless milk chocolate eyes.

'Barely, Bones. But it will be easier now.' Easing her just a little closer, his hands on her hips.

'Sure…' Nodding, understanding. Then she whispered closer to his ear, 'Tell me again, I love to hear you say it.'

Booth smiled and squeezed her tight, turning his mouth to her ear and whispered softly, 'I. Love you, Bones.'

Bones sighed and leant her temple on his, her body sinking into his a tad. She turned her head to look into him. Stroking his stubbly jaw, she said gently, 'Thank you. I swear it too…' Then kissed him for a long sensuous goodbye.


Jeffersonian. Dr. Temperance Brennan's office, six days later…

Bones sat at her desk tapping away on her keyboard, typing up her latest report. Six days after the night they had spent making love, having rampant sex and exchanging each other. Bones hadn't lost her smile since she had returned. Although the ache between her thighs was gone now. Strangely she found the pain a comfort. When she sat down, she remembered their passion and it made her grin secretly.

Everybody at work was delighted to see her back and happy with the adventure stories galore. Ange was proud of her quirky friend. She had done better than she honestly thought she would, although she didn't tell her that.

Parker came in with Rebecca a couple of days after their arrival in DC, with flowers, a box of her favorite chocolates, a set of photos and a DVD, with all the video clips he had taken, for her.

They went out to lunch at the diner and talked for hours. Bones didn't mind that she was back late, ignoring the curious stares she got from Cam. Bones worked late most nights, putting more hours in than most anyway.

Rebecca knew of the blossoming romance, obviously Parker couldn't hide that from his mother and Bones certainly wouldn't want him to obfuscate on their behalf. Rebecca was delighted with the news and told Tempe that.

Bones got silly text messages from Booth regularly, which made her smile, laugh or sigh. Some were extremely naughty, others hugely romantic and touching. Dr. Temperance Brennan was the happiest she had ever been in her life, and so was Special Agent Seeley Booth.

'So, Sweetie are you gonna tell me why you have not stopped smiling since you came back from China? I've given you six days to tell me and I can't wait any longer.'

Bones opened her mouth, grinned, then said, not looking up from her paperwork. 'Yes.' Then taking a breath and looked up, as Ange plonked herself down opposite, raising her brows intrigued and surprised.

'Wow. That was easy. So spill, girlfriend.' Bones opened her mouth to start, but her mobile bleeped, Bones snuck a glance at it and smiled at the caller ID. She flicked it open and read it,

'Tell Ange, she needs to mind her own business for a change.. XX J'

Bones re-read the message with a quiz on her brow. She looked to Angela, who said, 'What?'

'Booth says, mind your own business.'

'What?' Ange asked, sitting up suddenly. Bones shrugged her shoulders and shook her head slightly. Then realised something. Her heart hammered in her chest, she pushed off the desk, leaping from her chair and trotted out onto the gantry, looking around, Ange following confused, close behind.

Booth lay on the couch by the coffee machine, ankles crossed casually. They locked eyes, as he gave her a little finger wave. 'Seeley! My Seeley!' Bones ran head long, jumping on him with laughter and bucket loads of kisses, as he wrapped his limbs around her chuckling, kissing her back just as frantically. Her exclamation humorous as well as heartfelt.

Ange placed her hand on her hip and grinned saying 'Never mind. Forget I asked.' Walking away discretely.

'You're here? You're early? Eight days early!' she gushed excited and very surprised, then she relaxed and in a sultry tone leaning into his face, 'I've missed you.' Then whispered to his ear, 'Love you.'

'Humm,' he cooed handsomely, 'Wrapped up Tokyo, last drinking binge with Nok, then hopped a flight back. First class, thank you, Tempe.' Bones grinned hard, straddling his hips her palms flat on his torso. 'You look absolutely stunning, you're glowing.' He looked her over, speaking the truth. His warm hands on her thighs.

'It's all that Boothy juice.' Waggling her brows seductively, smooching his lips.

'Bones, naughty, naughty,' he chastised gently.

'Haaa. You love it.' Rolling to his side, he shifted to lie beside and facing her. Booth hooked his leg over hers, while she caressed his back. They locked into a deep gaze.

'So, I got something for you?'

'Yeah? What?'

'This.' Booth pulled out a little square box. Bones drew in a deep breath, losing her smile a little, she knew instantly what it was. You didn't need to be a genius to work it out.

'What is it? A car?' she said straight faced, trying to contain her pesky stomach butterflies.

'Yes, yes it is,' he said, matching her straight face and ridiculous humour.

'I've got a car, a rather good one actually,' she said with a wonky pout.

'Ok, what haven't you got?' Booth asked sweetly,

Bones took a breath, as she stroked his hair back over his head with a warm palm, watching her task. Then said softly, 'A husband, a child.' Her eyes glistening.

'Right. Do you want a husband and a child?' he asked seriously.

'Yes,' she said with a short sharp nod.

'Cool. If you put this on, all you want? Will come to you in time.'

'Is that so?' Bones whispered.

'Yeah.' Booth's eyes glistened.

'How wonderful…' she smiled gently, then said sweetly, 'Overflowing, Booth.' Her reference to their crystal glass, making Booth's tears slip delicately from his lids. Booth took out the ring and slipped it on her phalange, left hand, third one along. His hand trembling as he did. Bones held his face in her warm palms, leant in, tracing his features with her twinkling pupils, then kissed him delicately.

Ange, Cam and Jack stood, peering over the gantry, exchanging relieved enchanted smiles.


Author's notes: Well done, you got to the end! Phew!! A hearty round of applause to you all. I pray you enjoyed the trip and the interactions between Bones and her ward. Hopefully it lit up a dark winter, giving you a warm glow. Hope it was worthy of your valuable time. If you felt it was, please feel free to review. Till the next time… Lebxeb. X