OK, so firstly, some clever people (not me!) discovered that Brennan appears to be wearing a St. Christopher's medal in the final scene. My mind started making up its own stories..

But I'm feeling a bit guilty for 'stealing' the idea. So I apologize, and I praise whoever discovered it! Sharp eyes... And I hope you'll enjoy this. I feel like it's not a big enough contribute to the meaning this story would have, so to speak, if it were true. But it's late, and I'm tired, and I just watched a cheerful movie so I'm not very much in the post-finale-sadness mood.

Rambling...

Enjoy! And do tell me what you think! =)


"Booth…"

He was giving her his medal. His Saint Christopher medal, patron of travelers, mariners, of Booth.

Logically she knew that the image did nothing to protect or guide her; it was an image, a representation of someone who she wasn't even sure existed. And if there had been a Christopher in the past, patron of travelers, he would not have had the magical powers the Church attributed to him.

But tonight…

Tonight, Saint Christopher was their saint. It didn't matter if Saint Christopher had really existed, or if the penchant worked. What mattered was that Booth was pressing it into her hands now, and she knew she couldn't accept.

"Booth, it's yours. It is something you believe in, and I don't."

"I want you to have it," Booth countered, keeping his eyes trained on her. "Bones, I want you to have it. Please."

He hardly ever begged. She saw his eyes, saw the need in them. Did he need her to have the medal? Why?

"…Why?" she voiced her question before thinking it through, unconsciously curling her fingers around his fist.

"It will keep you safe," he told her, looking at her intensely. With any other man (or woman), she would have felt uneasy, but with Booth, the intensity in his gaze made her shiver. Looking down, she tried to summon some logic.

"But Booth, a medal has no magical powers over anyone. It cannot influence the outcome of any of my…"

He laid his finger on her lips and she was silent at once, feeling strangely elated, yet strangely afraid as well.

"It may not protect you from bullets, Bones, but it'll keep you safe over there."

She started to shake her head, not understanding, but he shushed her with another look.

"Bones…" searching for words, he faltered for a moment. "We're gonna be separated for a year. I –" he hesitated, then continued. "I know I need something to keep remembering life here, remembering the squints and Parker and you... I cannot just turn this part of my life off for a year, you know?"

He wasn't expecting an answer, so she let him continue.

"I'm pretty sure you need something to remember the Jeffersonian by, too. And – just keep it, okay? Be safe." Suddenly, some sort of desperation appeared in his eyes. "God, Bones, please be safe. I don't think – I don't think I could survive without you."

The raw emotion she saw in his eyes, recognizing it without reason or delay, made her feel like crying. Suddenly, it didn't feel right to leave; not just the Jeffersonian, her work, but him.

Their partnership of five years was important to her, but he meant more. He was not just a work partner or even just a friend – and for a moment, she thought she could see her future. What decision she would make. If he would still be there to accept it…

Unable to put her thoughts into words, she reached up and kissed his cheek, slightly scruff with stubble.

She lingered too long, keeping her lips pressed onto his cheek, but she didn't –couldn't– leave. His arms wound around her and they were hugging, but it felt different, she could feel his entire body and her own felt as if it were on fire – bolts shooting from her toes to her arms and head, making her feel dizzy.

"Bones…" His voice was raspy and filled with something she couldn't identify. "Bones, if you're not gonna move now, I'm gonna do things we'll both regret."

Do them, a stubborn part of her mind called to him, do it! Do what we've been wanting to do for years!

A few years ago, she would have undoubtedly given in to the temptation. Forsake the proper relationship society expected and just dive into the fun, not caring much about consequences.

But that was a few years ago, and this was now.

So she moved back reluctantly, longing to keep some part of them connected – she held on to his hand after their bodies had separated, and he looked at their joined hands with wonder and –love? – and suddenly she knew, just knew, things would change when they got back. How or why she knew this, she could not tell, nor what exactly would change.

But it would.

It had to.