Satin and Steel
A/N: I have faith that the writers will eventually stick our favorite couple together, but, in the meantime, I couldn't let the episode end that way. Just couldn't!! The story just came pouring out of me at a frantic pace after watching episode 100, so the writing isn't great. Nevertheless, feedback is always MUCH appreciated.
Disclaimer: I do not own these characters and derive no profit from these stories. My sole purpose in writing them is to provide vicarious pleasure both to myself and other Booth/Brennan fans still awaiting that "I love you" moment on TV!!
PS: Just a random comment. I got to thinking tonight that "Bones Booth" (as in MRS. Bones Booth) sounds pretty good, don't'cha think?
Booth opened his eyes slowly, becoming instantly aware of the pounding in his head at the same moment that he realized somebody was hammering on his door. The room was pitch black. He'd draped blankets over the windows to shut out any stray light from the outdoors and piled pillows over his head to block out any luminous particle that might have interfered with his desperate need for rest.
He lay for a long moment in the bed, insensate, incapable of any kind of movement. Everything hurt. His head, his stomach, his feet—his heart. Especially his heart.
Over and over, he replayed the moment from the previous month when Brennan had shut down any hope of a future between them. Without even knowing it, she'd taken a machine gun and mowed down 5 years of dreams, leaving him … empty. He'd always known they'd come together eventually. He'd taken it on faith, in spite of all their differences and Brennan's fears. But that faith had betrayed him—It had left him out cold in the rain, hung out to dry in an endless storm that showed no signs of abating.
For the first time in many years, Booth found himself actively questioning whether or not a loving God existed and had actually placed him on this Earth with some kind of purpose. What purpose was there for him? Why would God gift him with a soulmate and then keep her from him for all eternity? He was so damn heart sick of being alone, so gut sick of waiting for her to come around, so soul sick at the realization that she never would, in spite of all his praying.
THUD THUD THUD THUD THUD
He squeezed his eyes more tightly shut and clasped a pillow to his head, determined to ignore the person at his door. Nothing mattered enough to drag him back to life. For all he was concerned, the world had stopped spinning the night she said she could never love him. And while, for Parker's sake he would rise eventually and rejoin the ranks of the living, it wouldn't be for a long while, and he would never be the same person he was before that day.
As he sank back into the welcoming darkness, an almighty crash sounded in the living room. The sound of a window shattering inwards.
"Shit!" He scrambled blindly for the gun beside the bed, knocking over a lamp in the process. Snatching up the weapon, he stumbled toward the door, cussing as shards of glass bit into his feet. There was no thought process to his attack. On autopilot, he entered the living room and took aim at the dark shadow in his living room, cocking the trigger.
Blurry as his vision was, there was no mistaking the familiar voice. Booth lowered his gun, disbelieving, and rubbed his eyes.
His former partner detached herself from the shadows of the room and moved towards him, holding up her hands.
"Don't shoot," she said again, softly, stopping in the middle of the room. "I'm sorry if I scared you."
Moonlight puddled through the shattered crystal, casting golden aspersions of light through her sleek auburn hair. Her eyes glittered with an unnamable emotion and her full lips were pressed into a thin white line. Backlit by the moonlight, clad in jeans and a simple white T, Temperance Brennan looked ethereal and more beautiful than ever.
Booth's broken heart lurched.
"You didn't scare me," he shot back automatically, holding to the fearless persona he'd cultivated for so long. The persona that was a complete lie. He was afraid. She was one of only two people who held the key to that fear, and she'd used it to handcuff and execute him that night outside Sweets' office.
"And what the hell do you think you're doing? You're damn lucky you're not dead right now!" He waved the gun as proof.
Her words were slow and measured. "I'm already dead."
He blinked, confused. "What?"
"I'm dead, Booth," she whispered, clasping her hands in an uncharacteristically nervous gesture.
All of this was too strange, too painful. He rubbed his head in desperation, willing this apparent specter away.
"You look alive to me," he said dryly, with as much self-control as he could muster, when everything within was screaming to either a) run the opposite direction and never look back or b)run straight toward, pull her close and never let her leave his sight again. But he was frozen
"I … was attempting a metaphoric construct," she explained lamely, tucking a strand of gold-red hair behind her ear. "I'm sorry if it wasn't correctly used."
"Don't!" Booth exploded, grateful that he'd automatically put the safety back on the gun. "Don't say you're sorry for something so inane. What the hell are you doing here?" he repeated, feeling the anger and confusion beginning to build to a slow boil within him.
"What I meant was, I feel dead, Booth," she said softly, looking for vulnerable for a moment that he clenched his fists to avoid crossing the floor and dragging her into his arms. "Inside, I mean. Ever since you walked out on our partnership."
"I didn't walk out on anything," Booth snarled, stung to the quick by the accusation. "You did."
"But you said we could still be partners and then you left," she pointed out in that infuriatingly reasonable, eternally empirical fashion.
"Geez, Brennan!" he roared. "I need some time to recover. To get some control over my emotions, so I don't feel like mauling you or jumping out a window every time we're in the same room!"
"I don't know what—"
"You don't know what that means," he interrupted coldly. "It means you took a sledgehammer to my heart, Brennan, as thoroughly as tonight you took a brick to my window. Why?" He took several step forwards, willing her to shrink away, but she held her ground though visibly trembling. "Why are you here? It's bad enough you've taken over my dreams and thoughts for every waking moment. Why are you here? Why aren't you working on some case with my replacement?"
"Booth, you're irreplaceable."
The words were almost as painful as the ones she'd used to reject him. "Dammit, I can't do this," he muttered wearily, waving a hand in her general direction, but unable to look her in the face a moment longer. "You wanna stay, stay. You wanna go, go. I'm outta here."
He turned towards the front door, fully intending to walk out of it in his boxers. For the first time in weeks, his mind felt clear of a painful red haze. He'd find his way to the FBI office, get a change of clothes, and request a transfer. That was what he would do.
"Booth." Her voice was pleading and he steeled himself against it.
"I was wrong."
He kept walking.
"I was afraid."
He kept walking. Just a few more steps and he'd be home free.
"Booth, it's not always the guy. I knew too. The moment you walked into the university where I was giving a presentation, I knew."
If she'd shot him in the back, he wouldn't have been more stunned. He stopped in his tracks, afraid to turn around.
She continued speaking, more quickly now. "There's no logic attached to it. No facts I can extrapolate to explain how I knew, but in that moment I knew we'd build a relationship. I knew we were to become partners. I knew you were right for me." She sounded like she was crying. "I don't understand how I knew, Bones. I was afraid. I'm still afraid. I'm sorry."
Very slowly, he pivoted back towards her, feeling the cold hand of fear clutching at his chest.
She was standing in the same spot he'd left her, wide-eyed and pale. Seeing the tears glitter on her cheeks was like being stabbed in the gut. He was her partner. He should be by her side, holding her, comforting her, but fear held him steady.
"No more games, Brennan." His voice was uncomfortably unsteady. "You need to make a decision right now, because if not, I'm done. I'm not as strong as I thought I was. I can't go on like nothing ever happened between us. What exactly are you here to tell me?"
She took a deep breath and shoved her hands into her pockets. "I'm saying I don't know how it will ever work, but I want to believe. I want to gamble and roll the dice. Please." When he failed to respond instantly to her words, her face fell and she took a step toward the window. "I shouldn't have come—I'm sorry—"
Booth tackled her. There was no other way to describe the speed with which he crossed the room, reached her side and yanked her up into his arms. One hand tangled in her hair, drawing her head to his, the other snaked around her slender waist and pressed her as close as humanly possible. There was no tenderness in the initial kiss. Their mouths collided in a bruising exchange, competing for dominance in a war fought with frantic lips and tongues and teeth. The soft sounds Brennan made as she gave as good as she got caused Booth's body to erupt in flames. People who called this woman cold had no idea what lay within her. She was satin and steel and he'd have it no other way.
With a gasp, he surfaced momentarily, groaning her name. "Bones, you feel like paradise." He trailed his lips across the graceful line of her collarbone and slid one hand beneath her t-shirt, onto the warm, smooth curve of her spine. A warm, salty tear trickled down into the hollow of her clavicle and he looked up inquiringly.
She caught his eyes with that blue-gray mirroring gaze, reflecting everything he'd ever wanted out of life.
"Don't cry, Bones," he whispered, resting his forehead against hers and smiling through the veil of moisture in his own eyes.
Another tear slid down her cheek and Booth gently brushed it away. "I actually missed hearing you call me that," she confessed with a tearful chuckle. "I missed everything about you, including irrational constructs such as 'you feel like paradise.' "
He caught her lips in another long kiss, this one as slow and tender as the previous had been angry and needy.
"I love you, Bones," he murmured against her lips. "You may not be ready to hear it, and it's fine if you can't say it, but you need to know. I'm head-over-heels, bay at the moon, no-holds-barred nuts about you."
Her warm breathed sighed against his fingertips as he traced the outline of her lips with a fingertip. "That sounds like something Hodgins said about Angela once."
Affronted, Booth frowned down at his partner."When a guy declares his undying love, Bones," he growled, "He doesn't want to hear another guy mentioned in almost the same breath." He pulled back and shook her very slightly for emphasis. "I want to be the only guy taking up space inside your head tonight. Is that clear?"
"The Alpha Male rears its head." Bones' eyes twinkled, even as a shadow of fear crept back in. "Are things going to change between us now, Booth?"
"Only for the better." He kissed her hair reassuringly, inhaling the subtle fragrance of her shampoo.
"But what if—"
"All of life's a big what-if, Bones," he interrupted. "Our very jobs are built on what-ifs. That's no reason not to jump in with guns blazing."
"But you've never let me carry a gun," Bones objected.
Booth slid an arm under her legs and lifted her off her feet, honeymoon style. He laughed at the shriek she let out, enjoying the way her arms twined around his neck trustingly.
"Maybe tonight you'll persuade me otherwise," he teased, kissing her lightly.
"I'll lay odds on that," she retorted, as he carried her towards the bedroom.
"Gambling with a gambling addict," he sighed, pausing at the threshold of the room. "Bones Brennan, I think it's only fair to warn you that I'm more than slightly addicted to you. And there are no AA meetings for men hopelessly addicted to beautiful, genius forensic anthropologists."
"That is a convoluted metaphor, but I believe what you are saying is that "being weaned off of me" would be a difficult process."
"Impossible, Bones," he corrected. "Completely impossible. You're in my bloodstream."
"I think this 'addiction' might be somewhat mutual," she admitted.
"What do you know? We're each other's cures," Booth sighed melodramatically. "I told you it was fate when we met ..."
He was so busy kissing her that he didn't notice when she failed to correct him.