Disclaimer: not mine!

Title: July 17th

Summary: A visit to a headstone. Post-series, 2nd person perspective.

A/N: WHOO ZANGST! B/B, H/A, possible C/Z (if you like)

A/N2: Just a note, I do not warn for character death, since I feel like it gives everything away. This note being here does not necessarily mean that there is character death, although there might be. It's now a standard author's note for all my stories, particularly the ZANGST ones. They're the ones that are most likely to involve character death (I think at least one actually had it, or at least hinted at it).

It's July 17th, and here you are again.

Every year, like clockwork.

It's not healthy, you know that. But really, you don't care anymore. After a certain point, you've stopped caring about whether or not visiting this place is good for your psyche. You know it isn't, and you've accepted that fact.

You park your car in the same place. Then it's thirty-five steps straight ahead, and another forty-eight to the right, and you're there.

It's a simple headstone, with just his name, birth and death dates, and a short little inscription carved into the white-grey marble, but every time you see it your heart breaks into a thousand jagged pieces.

You crouch down before it, and place the bouquet of forget-me-nots and daisies you picked up from the store in front of the headstone.

"Hey. It's… it's me. I'm back. Again," you say, grinning half-heartedly.

As always, there is no response from the grave marker.

"Uh. Well. Things are… things are going well, I guess. Um, Booth and Brennan had a son last January. They named him Max. You know, for her dad…."

Of its own accord, your hand stretches out to trace his name, and you bite your lip to fight back tears.

"Sweets and Daisy are still together. I mean, you know, they have their problems sometimes, but I think they'll stick it out. And Hodgins and Angela are still… well, they're Hodgins and Angela. They fight, a big dramatic blowout fight, and then they make up, with the big dramatics there too. You should see Kit, though. She's getting so big! And she's been following Brennan and the baby around all big-eyed, and she's started demanding a brother for herself, so Hodgins is freaking out about that…."

You trail off, still running your fingers over the date that broke your heart.

July 17th, 2012.

"I, uh, I'm doing… OK, I guess. Nothing big or life-changingly newsworthy from me," you force a laugh that comes out more like a sob.

You stay there for a few more minutes, and then those minutes turn into an hour, into two hours.

You stay there, staring at his headstone, holding back tears with everything you have, trying to find the words to tell him….

"I… I really miss you," you choke out at last. "I know I say that every year, but… but I do. I really do."

A heartbeat of silence, broken by your own pathetic sniffles.

"I still don't understand why you did it. We would've… things would have changed. We could have gotten you out. You didn't have to…."

You can't say it. You couldn't say it in 2012, you can't say it now. You'll never be able to say it. You can't even think it. Never.

If you don't think it, or say it, then maybe it didn't happen.

If you don't acknowledge it, it isn't true.

"I wish I'd realized something was wrong. Before everything. Back when I could still have… helped you, somehow," you whisper, finally letting the tears slip from your eyes. "If I'd just… I don't know, listened to you? Talked to you? Paid attention to something besides my own problems, maybe I…."

You know that you aren't making sense. And you don't care.

"I'm sorry," you say. You've never said this before. "I'm so sorry. Please, I know you're gone, but… just; can you give me some kind of sign? That you hear me? That you… that you know I'm sorry, that I would do anything to change what happened?"

Heartbeat. Heartbeat.

You wait, desperate for some kind of sign. You used to believe in signs, in some kind of after-life-existence. But in the six years since he died, you've never once seen any hint of… anything.


The sky, which was overcast and choked with clouds a mere moment ago, suddenly lets through a tiny ray of sunlight.

It doesn't fall on you, or on the headstone.

Instead, it falls slightly to your left, and when you glance at the spot that's momentarily illuminated, you see one tiny violet, fighting its way through the grass.

You smile, a little.

You don't pick the violet. You leave it there, growing beside the headstone and the slightly-bedraggled bouquet of forget-me-nots and daisies.

And next year, when July 17th rolls around, the bouquet you bring to the headstone is forget-me-nots, daisies, and violets.

And every year, you bring the same bouquet of flowers to the headstone on that day, and every year you run your hand over the name and inscription.

Dr. Zachary Uriah Addy

Devoted Friend, Beloved Son

You will always be in our hearts

A/N: ANGST! Written in anticipation of watching my favorite character DIE on one of my other favorite shows. Which I will watch… now.