Okay, I don't know why I'm doing this. I have to apologize for the disjointed timeline, as this takes place prior to the Courier's capture, and I didn't want to ruin the delivery of the other piece. Curse you exposition!

Hope this doesn't ruin a short, sad story but I just had to get this bit out of my head. I almost feel like I'm twisting the dagger in poor Boone's chest. So, uhh… feel free to disregard this bit if you think the first chapter was poignant enough.

As always, any and all thoughts/reviews/critiques are welcome.

The sniper's nest was just the way he remembered it when they first stumbled across it. Even the blind was still intact. Boone let out a breath he didn't even realize he was holding. The traps the Courier had laid down upon their departure were intact, which meant the Legion hadn't discovered the place.

"Satisfied?" He could tell she was trying to make her tone neutral, but he could hear the amusement that was conspicuously absent.

Months of doing this together had cemented their recon and subsequent tag team shit storm of destruction technique. This time though, he insisted that she not do her recon routine alone; the small sniper perch would be the perfect spot for a Legion ambush.

Boone grunted his assent, refusing to apologize for being cautious. Fucking nerves are getting to me like a green fucking recruit.

He'd felt every step from the strip like lead shot in the gut. His nerve had almost broken a couple of times on the way to Cottonwood Cove, but an admission of affection over a can of beans after hiking through the Mojave all day just didn't sit right. She needed to know he wasn't just going through the motions anymore.

And after acting like a jackass… Boone cringed at the memory of trying to steal a drunken kiss from her the night after Bitter Springs. "I can wait, Boone." Her hand on his chest had checked his movement before he could even get close. "When you're ready, I'll be here."

With a start, Boone realized the sun was setting already, casting rosy reflections across the water of Cottonwood Cove.

He felt the Courier step close, she was silent as always, but he could feel it. They stood in companionable silence for a few minutes, watching the sun set over the cove. Her touch was light on his shoulder. Laughter danced in her eyes as he turned to face her.

"Aah Boone… I'll make a poet of you yet. Granted, it would most likely have to be Haiku, knowing your taciturn tendencies."

"Yeah. Right. Not exactly my thing, but…" He threw her a shrug instead of finishing the sentence. Her tinkle of laughter was enough to convince him that she didn't need to know he was more preoccupied with the number of Legion tents down below than poetry.

He knew she had taken in the number of tents below as well. If it concerned her, she didn't show it. Never had. If anyone had earned the right to be cocky, it would be her, he had to admit.

She left his side, checking over her armor and the draw of her sidearm. Twilight was descending, and this was her element.

"I'm off - don't wait up. " She flashed him her signature mischievous smile over her shoulder, knowing full well that he would. "Besides," she added with a wink, "we've got a big day ahead of us tomorrow."

Boone nodded. He would make sure of it. The Legion could wait another day, because tomorrow was going to be theirs.