A/N: Okay, so now that I've started writing Bones fanfics, I can't seem to stop. lol. Is this typical? If anyone also happens to read my Gilmore Girls fics, I apologize and please note that I'm working on finishing my two open stories, but then, I have a feeling I'll be diving headfirst into the Bones world.
"Booth was supposed to be here ten minutes ago." Brennan said as she glanced at the clock one more time.
"It's not typical of him to be late." Cam said. "Should we call him?" She asked.
"I'll try again." Brennan said as she walked into her office and shut the door. His cell number was programmed as speed dial one on her office phone. Sweets would have read something into that, but Brennan knew that it was just because they were constantly in touch with each other for work purposes. She listened as she got several rings. This was an abnormal behavior for him as he never let his phone ring more than twice. Suddenly, he picked it up.
"Booth." He said.
"Hey, it's me. Where are you? We're all at the lab waiting to go over our latest results on this case."
"Bones, Pops died last night." He informed her. Brennan was silent for a few minutes, stunned by the news.
"Oh, Booth…" She said, not knowing what to say.
"I'm going to need a few days to get things sorted out, you know for the funeral and everything. I just got off the phone with the Bureau and I'm taking two weeks off. They'll send someone over to gather the evidence."
"I understand. I'll let everyone here know and we'll take care of everything."
"Is there anything I can do?" She asked. The conversation was starting to wear on him.
"If there is..." She said.
"I will." He said before hanging up. Brennan knew that he wouldn't. It was clear that his heart was crushed by the recent news, but she also knew that he wouldn't rely on anyone. He refused to be seen as weak.
"Bones, what are you doing here?" Booth asked as he opened the door.
"That adage 'News travels quickly' is quite true." Brennan said as she walked in with the bags of food in her hands.
"What do you mean?"
"Well, everyone asked why I was alone at all of these places and when I told them, they sent gifts." She explained. "Sid made you something he said would be sure to cure whatever ails you. The diner sent an apple pie. Mama's sent soup, specifically for you of course, Angela and Hodgins sent a bottle of very expensive scotch, and after all of that, I was informed it was customary to send food to the grieving as a sign of comfort, so I made my macaroni and cheese because I know how much you love it." She said as she put all the food in the fridge for him. "And I know that you said you didn't want any help but…." She couldn't finish because when she turned around Booth had tears in his eyes. The rare sight brought out an even rarer occasion; Brennan acted without thinking and wrapped her arms around him. She ran her hand over his back as Booth finally broke down and cried. She held him in the kitchen like that for a good two minutes before he pulled away.
"I'm sorry." He said.
"You've just lost the most important man in your life. You have no need to apologize. It's only natural for you to show emotion by crying." Brennan comforted him, in her own unique way.
"Thanks Bones." He said. "I hadn't yet. It just sort of crept up on me." She nodded.
"Do you want to talk about it?" Brennan asked. "Because if you did, I would be the natural candidate for you to confide in because we have such a strong and trusting partnership." She explained, but not wanting him to feel like he had to.
"Have you been talking to Sweets?" Booth asked, knowing she didn't come up with that on her own.
"I had to ask him a question about this whole process." Brennan admitted.
"What question was that?" Booth asked, wanting the distraction. Brennan looked torn in a way that surprised Booth.
"Can I be honest?" She asked him. "I don't want to hurt you when you clearly have enough hurt right now."
"Always be honest, Bones. It's what I love about you." He said. "I might not want to hear it, but you should always be honest."
"Okay, well." She said, sitting down next to him on the couch. "Hank gave me some information to pass along to you after he died." She stopped, uncomfortable with the look on Booth's face. "I wanted to ask Sweets' opinion on how to tell you this information and when." She said briefly.
"What did he want me to know that he couldn't tell me himself?"
"He didn't want you to be mad at him. He was afraid you would blame him for what he did."
"Tell me." Booth demanded, wanting to know. Brennan glanced around.
"Hank did say to make sure we were alone so that you could rely on me to be comforted. It would seem this would be an ideal time." She still looked unsure, so Booth put his hand on hers.
"Bones, just…tell me." She held his hand in between hers and nodded.
"The night that your father left, Hank witnessed him hitting you. When you went up to your room, Hank and your father got into a fight and he told your father to never come back. Hank was the reason your father left." She said. Booth didn't move or show any reaction whatsoever. "He was very distraught when we talked about it. He felt terrible that he hadn't seen the signs earlier. He said that he was shocked and angered by it, as he should have been, but he sometimes wondered if you would blame him for not having a real father if he told you himself." Booth shook his head.
"Why would he tell this to you?"
"When I would go visit him, he often asked me how I felt about being abandoned. He confided that it was easier to talk to me about it and hoped to glean some information and transfer it to your own situation. He also hoped that because I could relate to your experience, you would be able to open up and talk about it with someone, even after he was gone." He nodded. That sounded like Pops. "He would often tease me that he would be one hundred when he died and we would most likely be married by then and it wouldn't be an issue." She added with a small smile as she recalled the memory. Booth couldn't help but chuckle.
"He wanted us to get together so bad. Even after I told him that I tried and you said no, he said that everything worth having was worth waiting for." He said as he played with his hands, not wanting to see her reaction. "How often did you visit him?" Booth asked.
"Whenever I had the chance. It was only a couple of visits." She said. "I wish I had visited more." Booth nodded.
"Me too. Parker and I would go sometimes." Brennan nodded. "Oh God, I forgot about Parker. How am I going to tell him?" Booth realized as he ran his hands over his eyes before coming to rest in front of his mouth.
"Do you want me to do it?" Brennan asked. She and Parker had a close relationship, despite only meeting a few times. Even Booth was baffled by the connection the two shared.
"No, it should come from me. I have to do it. I'll go over there tomorrow."
"If he wants to talk about, let him know that I'm always available." Brennan offered.
"I'll tell him. I'm sure he'd like to talk to you." Booth said, knowing his son.
"That offer is also extended to you, you know." She said. "Whatever you need Booth. Don't be afraid to ask for help."
"Thanks Bones, but I think it's just going to take some time."
"And space?" She asked, wondering if she had come over too soon. He shook his head with a smile.
"No. Just time. I'm glad you're here." He said, as he nudged her playfully with his shoulder. "How expensive was that scotch that you brought with you?" He asked. She shrugged.
"I don't know. Hodgins' bought it." Brennan said.
"That's all I needed to know." Booth said as he stood up and grabbed two glasses.