EDITED - Thanks to my beta, booth's-squint.


The Finally to the Holding


"Why?"

The word was a soft, pleading whisper, almost indiscernable over the pouring rain falling hard on the cold streets of Washington, DC that night.

Temperance Brennan did not know the reason why Seeley Booth appeared on her doorstep at one in the morning on a rainy Friday. Also, she did not know the meaning behind his abrupt question, nor the answer he so desperately wanted from her. All she knew was that her partner, who was still standing in front of her completely drenched, had never looked so dejected.

Still shocked at his slovenly appearance and unable to form a coherent reply, she merely took a step back. He took one unstable step forward and repeated his unanswered question.

"Why?" There was a fidgety edge to his voice that she did not recognize.

"Why are you here, Booth?" She had not meant to ask him this, but the words were out before she could stop them. She wanted to know what the hell he wanted from her. But, as she thought about it more carefully, the question seemed much more appropriate after everything that happened between them over the past few days.

"I missed my chance. My whole world turned upside down. I can adjust."

That was the final straw to their surrogate relationship. She saw it now. No more things were left unsaid. No more pretending. No more just partners. Now, they were Booth and Brennan: FBI agent and Forensic Anthropologist; crime solvers; partners; and now nothing else. Their friendship was shaken, possibly for good, and now, more than ever, Brennan needs to be the woman she always praised herself to be.

She would be logical, compartmentalize her emotions. She would discover a way to remain professional, regardless of her feelings; regardless of her broken heart.

She was right in her statement; she could adjust. She would adjust. But the fact that she hadn't yet adjusted seemed to be ignored by him.

"I can't -" he started. He was trembling, trying to come up with the right words, but to no avail. After many deep breaths, he continued, "I can't begin to tell you how much I hate you right now."

This shocked her to the core. She was unable to sort out which of the numerous emotions coursing through her veins was the most accurate to describe what she felt as she listened to his words.

He took another step forward causing his now very wet shirt, stretched and glued to his sculptured chest, to be merely inches away from hers.

"I mean… who the fuck do you think you are?"

The smell of alcohol on his breath was unmistakable. She felt a mixture of anger and relief at the suspicion of his intoxicated state. Being the scientist she was, she felt the need to confirm her suspicions.

"Are you drunk?"

He laughed, throatily and masculine, but she could tell he did not find her question to be amusing in any way. When his laughter subsided, his eyes met hers in a sad stare.

"I'm tired." He said simply, and her confusion was even more evident. "I'm freaking tired of all of this," his hands moved frantically in circles, attempting show that by 'this' he meant both of them. "All of this. It's making me crazy, Bones. Absolutely crazy."

He suddenly stumbled back, and made his way to her kitchen.

She took the opportunity to swing the door closed, following his lead. Stopping at the doorway, she looked at him intensely while he searched for a glass and tried to fill it with water.

"You should go." Her words were soft, understanding, but he made no attempt to move. Lowering the glass to the counter after taking a gulp of liquid, Booth turned his head to her.

"Why?" he repeated his question slowly, defeated. Brennan had never seen him like this and she could not deny that it scared her. Booth did not lose control. He did not drink excessively. He did not magically appear at her house in the middle of the night with non-sense questions and words like 'fuck'.

"I don't know what that means" was the only answer she could come up with.

He smiled. Turning his entire body in her direction he approached her slowly, as if challenging her to move, either away or closer. He looked like a predator hunting his prey.

"Of course you don't." He stopped, directly in front of her. Raising both of his arms to either side of her body, he tilted his head towards hers so they were only a few breaths apart. "You have no idea what it means, do you? What I've been going through?" After the initial shock to his proximity, she realized another emotion was emerging.

She was angry.

He had no right to do what he was doing. No right to come to her place and say these things using his drunkenness as an excuse. He had no right to make her weak in the knees and completely unable to form a coherent response. He had no right to trap her against her door and invade her senses with the smell of rain, alcohol and his own unique scent.

And he had absolutely no right to turn her on.

Still, she was unable to move. Fuck him!

"You have no idea what it means to me, or what you mean to me, or even what your fucking words and your fucking crying caused me, do you?"

And then it clicked. His question, the despair on his voice, the rain and the drunkenness, it all made sense. It was about that night.

It was all about the night she was finally honest with him.

"Do you really think you can come to me, after all this time, say that you regret your decisions, throw it all in my face and expect me to tell you that I'm here for you? Who the hell do you think I am?" He spat the words at her in disgust. "How much do you think I can take?"

"Get out" she hissed, frustrated with him. "You're drunk and I surely think you have no control of your actions, so go home. Go back to you place, to your girlfriend. Take a shower, take an aspirin, take something and I promise you, I'll try my best to dismiss you behavior tonight in a way that will not affect our partnership."

She made a motion to get away from Booth, but both of his hands grasped her waist to still her movements. Another humorless laugh escaped his lips.

His grip tightened, "I can't even begin to tell you all the wrong assumptions you just made in your little speech right now." He looked at her, and she could feel the rhythm of his desperate breathing, as much as the wetness dropping from his skin.

"Our partnership is already affected, Temperance." The seriousness in his tone was palpable. "We're already affected by this, or do you really think that everything now will just go back to normal?"

She saw the moment his expression softened. The moment his eyes buried into hers with all the desperation, sadness and sorrow he had kept away since that first night on the FBI steps. With no warning, he lowered his head to her shoulder, and took a deep, calming breath.

Suddenly Brennan felt the familiar throbbing in her most sensitive parts, and she cursed him silently. She was too raw; too exhausted from this whole situation to fight the feelings his proximity caused her. She just wanted to go back to bed and forget this whole intermission had ever happened. She just wanted to forget him.

"Please -" she begged weakly.

"Why? Why does it always have to come back to you? It's always you, Bones. Always. And I'm so tired of it"

The new position was way too intimate and she didn't know how to respond to it. How to respond to his proximity, or to make him step back and go back to the perfect little life he created for himself, without her. He was happy now, and that's what she always wanted for him. It was her time to fight for her own 'moving on'.

"Go home Booth."

"I can't," he cried, "I can't step back, Bones. I tried. I swear I tried. But I can't!"

She felt the moment his lips touched the skin of her neck. She felt the moisture and the tenderness, and the moment when her resolve started to dissipate.

"Stop -" A single tear escaped from the corner of her eyes "…Hannah -"

"I told her," he raised his head and she saw that his own eyes were glistening, trying to hold back tears. "Everything, I told her everything; from the first kiss to the night on the steps. I told her about the car. Everything, Bones. I told her every single thing there is to know." He paused to catch his breath. "And do you know how she reacted?" His question was rhetorical, but he waited for her answer anyway. She was too stunned to move or respond. "She understood it. She told me it was ok for me to have a past, and that she trusted me."

-. Resentment boiled up in Brennan's stomach. Resentment of Hannah for being so freaking perfect and understanding. Resentment of Booth for bringing this up now. Resentment that she was allowing him to make her feel this way. Bringing both of her hands to his chest, she pushed him hard.

"You should go back to her then." She tried pushing him away once again, but he didn't even flinch. His grasp on her was too strong.

"Let me go," She struggled furiously, trying at all cost to get as far away from him as possible. Her eyes were burning, but she vowed not to cry in his presence again.

"I told her no, damn it! I said I couldn't do this to her, so I told her no." Booth shook Brennan hard, but not enough to mark her. "She left, Bones. And I'm trying so damn hard to understand why I'm not running after her. Why I'm not asking her to take me back. Why I'm here right now, trying to convince myself that I don't feel anything when I look at you!"

"Stop it! Please Booth…" The tears were now running freely, and she cursed his capacity to make her break down like this. "We made decisions, and those led to consequences. This is the consequence." He was crying too, still slightly shaking her, his grip not loosening. "We've missed our moment."

His hands were big, holding her closely as if he never wanted to let her go. She could feel the heat from his skin mixed with the cold droplets of rain through the thin layer of her shirt. His eyes were pleadingly puffy and his lips were pursed together.

"I'm not what you want," She tried again, her resolve crumbling.

His head bowed again, and he planted his lips to her neck, placing a soft kiss where her pulse was visibly beating. Her head was spinning, and she could not form any coherent reason to why she should stop him. Why she should push him away when everything she wanted to do was to hold him close, strip him from these wet clothes and let him show her how to make love.

His trail of kisses was leading to her ear, where he sucked one of her lobes tenderly.

"I just want you."

His right hand let go of her waist only to roam lower, reaching her ass and thigh with a firm caress. Gripping her leg, he lifted it off the ground to wrap around his waist. The kisses he dropped on her collarbone were unstoppable.

"I hate you." He whispered without malice. "I hate you for making me want you so much"

His hips were thrusting into hers and his mouth nipped greedily at her mouth. Every cell of her body was on high alert. She was hyper aware of every touch - every brush of his lips - and it was enough to make waves of pleasure course through her body. Brennan knew she had to do something before things got even more complicated.

"You're drunk." Her hands attempted to push him away again, but there was no energy left in them or in her. "You're not thinking clearly. Please leave. Go back to your life, to your family. Please, let me adapt. I need to adapt, Booth. Please…"

Suddenly, everything stopped. There was no more lips on her skin, no more feeling of his already very hard cock brushing the inside of her thighs. No more Seeley Booth in her every pore. He had taken a step back and now all she felt was emptiness.

"Is that what you want?" His gaze was penetrating, and he looked decidedly more sober than when they first started this. "I'm gonna tell you something Temperance, and you gotta listen to me."

She shivered listening to the sound of his voice pronouncing her name – her first name – and the intimacy and intensity of the whole situation increased.

"I can do what you asked. I can go back to my place. I can sober up, call Hannah, and tell her that I made a mistake. I can be with her if she still wants me, and we can build a family together, and in 30, 40 or 50 years from now it can all be exactly like the life I always thought I wanted."

He took a step closer again, only this time it was softer. His raised hands got a tender hold of her hips, brushing delicately against the fabric of her shirt and the bare skin above the waistband of her sweatpants. He pushed himself against her, but now there was no anxiety, no desperation. There was only an attempt to prove her how well they fit together – and that they did. For a moment, she saw a glimpse of the Booth he used to be before all this mess. Her overly protective partner, best friend and, if she wanted to be honest with herself, the man who made her believe in love. In Booth, there was only safety.

"Or I can stay" he offered quietly, tentatively. "I can choose not to settle for second best. I can kiss you, and take you to bed, and make love to you all night long. And in the morning, I might even freak out a little for doing this after a night spent in a random bar trying to soothe all the pain I felt in my chest, but you can be there to tell me that you want me – that you want this – just as much as I do." He dropped his voice to a small whisper, "You said you don't want any regrets; that you've missed your chance. Well…" He sucked in a deep breath, hoping his words would convince her he was serious. "I'm giving you a second chance. I'm giving us a second chance. All you have to do is gamble with me."

I'm not a gambler.

I have to move on.

I missed my chance.

"Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expects a different outcome." His voice was firm, but she could sense the fear behind his words. "I'm the insane one here, Bones, but you don't have to be."

Because I did change.

This sudden realization took her off guard and stole her breath. The quick beating of his heart beneath her palm and the warmth of his skin through his drenched shirt gave her the safety she needed to understand the world of possibilities in front of her. This time, she would try for a different outcome.

Meeting his expecting eyes, she gave the smallest of nods, and that was all it took for his mouth to descend on hers.

This kiss was nothing like the previous. It was desperate, yet tender. They met halfway, mouths open, and their tongues took no time in probing and tasting each other's warmth. As her tongue swept into his mouth, she tasted a hint of whiskey, which somehow turned her on even more.

She felt his hands caress every single curve of her body. Grabbing her ass and pulling her to him, Booth supported her weight and lifted her off the ground, so she could wrap her legs around him. She felt her back uncomfortably pressed against the doorjamb. Sensing that something was wrong by the way her back stiffened, Booth carefully moved her. Brennan relaxed as she found herself comfortably pressed between the closest wall and his muscular chest. Never once breaking the kiss, her hands moved of their own accord to the buttons of his shirt, revealing his perfectly smooth skin.

His left hand – which was not essential to support some of her weight – cupped the globe of her breast through her clothes, flicking one of her hardened nipples with his trembling fingers. All the while, his mouth made its way once again to the column of her neck, sucking her pale skin before soothing it with his tongue. Her moans were swallowed by the sound of the rain pounding on the windows as her hands scraped down his shirt-covered back.

Leaning one knee on the wall behind her, he put some of her weight on it so he could manage to pull her sweatpants down. He did the best he could with her legs still wrapped around his midriff. Revealing the black lacy underwear she wore, Booth let out a loud groan. His hand slid underneath the soft material, descending to her center and pressing his thumb against her wetness. She couldn't believe that the cry she heard echoing through her house was her own.

Tired of so many layers covering their bodies, she quickly grabbed the bottom of her shirt and pulled it up, revealing her rounded breasts and flat belly. While he stared appreciatively at her newly exposed body, she grabbed both lapels of his partially open shirt and pulled it open. Wanting the offensive article of clothing gone, she pushed it down his arms, which forced him to let go of her momentarily. Regaining his firm hold on her, he dropped his head to her pink nipple. Ever so slowly, Booth circled it with his tongue and sucked it into his mouth, while his hand still worked on her sensitive mound.

The sensations bombarding her were too much to bear, and the anticipation of what was next almost undid her. Grabbing his head to pull it away from her chest, she kissed his frantically, while trying to separate herself enough of him so she could pull her panties out of the way. Seeing no other alternative, he put her down on the floor, her legs weak as she searched for support. Grabbing the garment, Booth finally stripped her naked, getting on his knees to dispose both material of that and her sweatpants somewhere behind him.

His eyes seemed to penetrate her skin, and he absorbed her appearance like a thirsty man in the desert. She could smell her own arousal, and she imagined how much it was affecting his own. Leaning closer to her womanhood, he dropped a kiss right above her bikini line. Trailing his way up her body, their mouths finally met hungrily. Her hands made their way to the growing bulge in the front of his pants, rubbing firmly. His groan was muffled by her mouth.

Their breathing was frantic and before he knew it, her hands had made it way to his belt, quickly unfastening it and opening the zipper of the jeans. Placing her hand inside his underwear, she grabbed his manhood, massaging it from base to tip. The moisture that leaked from him indicated his high level of arousal. She was impressed with his hardness. She always knew he was big – how couldn't he be – she thought without much of a logical reasoning, since he had to be just about everything.

Gently stopping her ministrations with his hands, he helped her get rid of his jeans and boxers, along with his shoes and socks, and soon they were both completely naked.

Unable to stop himself, he dragged her to him and lifted her off the ground once again, pushing her mercilessly against the wall. His mouth ravished the skin of her neck and shoulders as her hands gripped his groin once more, trying to position him at her entrance.

"This can be the biggest mistake of our lives" She said simply; no trace of regret in her voice.

Grabbing her ass with both hands, he pulled her further into his embrace, forcing her to let go of his manhood.

"Or the best thing that will ever happen to us." His answer was given between desperate kisses. "Right or wrong, we'll know for sure that we did everything possible to make it work."

For a moment they slowed their kisses, until they came to a stop. His face was level to hers and their breaths mingled; their faces flushed. His eyes were fixed on hers, and their mutual understanding didn't need any words of reassurance.

Now he was the one trying to position his cock at her dripping core. He probed her warm mound with his tip, earning a soft moan and a tighter grip on his shoulders. Carefully pressing their foreheads together, he kissed her lips sweetly. She was impatient and attempted to control his actions. She tried the best she could to move her hips lower and increase the contact, but he stopped every one of her attempts.

"Booth…" she pleaded.

As if only waiting for her to admit her need, he thrust into her in one single movement, earning a loud cry from her. Her head was spinning; her whole skin seemed to be on fire. For a lucid moment, the weight of their actions fell upon her. They were in her kitchen, naked, having sex – making love, she corrected. All the pain she felt during the past months dissipated at the feeling of his member pumping in and out of her, soothing all of the heartache and the desperation she felt when she realized there was no more hope for the two of them.

Being wrong had never felt so good.

They were finally – at last – crossing that goddamn line.

Once he was deep inside her, he couldn't stop the frantic movements of his hips. One of his hands supported her from behind while the other reached between them, passing her midriff and touching her clit. She cried out in ecstasy, leaning her head on the wall behind her and forcing her hips further around his thick heat. His hand was now pinching her sensate nub, twisting it gently with his fingers.

She cried out, and he hugged her closer to him, holding her as best as he could with one arm. He brought his mouth closer to her face so he could kiss her lips once again, as tenderly as he could. Their tongues met, and the movements of his tongue in her mouth tried to imitate the motion of their lower bodies.

"Faster" She whispered between kisses, and he obeyed, quickening the pace. His hand rubbed her clit and encouraged her to come apart in his arms. He could feel the moment her walls began to twitch around him. His arms protectively held her fragile frame when the familiar hot throbbing rose from her belly to occupy every inch of her sensitive body, and the waves of pleasure made her shake uncontrollably. She felt safe to allow the feeling to take over, knowing he would be there to catch her when she fell.

Soon after her waves subsided, his own orgasm took over, and he buried his face into her neck as he emptied himself inside of her.

As their breathing returned to normal, she felt his whole body stiffen a little. Raising his head so his eyes could meet hers, she saw the uncertainty. Now he looked much more sober and a lot more conscious of his actions. Displaying a smile that made his heart completely melt, she pulled his head to her and kissed him soundly.

"Take me to bed" She whispered in his ear, and felt his arms tighten around her frame as they left the kitchen and walked through the entire house to reach their destination.

Stepping inside of the room, he stopped by the bedpost of her king size bed and slowly descended her onto the mattress. The cold material of her bed sheets made her hypersensitive body tingle as Booth's intense gaze on her exposed frame made her whimper. It didn't take much longer for him to lay his body on top of hers and begin to affectionately massage every inch of skin he could find.

"You're so good, babe"

The endearment term didn't go unnoticed by her, but she didn't scold him. His hands and lips were doing magical things to her body, and as long as he didn't stop the caresses, he could call her anything he wanted.

His lips descended down her skin. Passing to the valley of her breasts, the moisture of his mouth left a trail on her body. Squeezing one breast with a hand, he sucked on the other thoughtfully. Scraping the hard skin with his teeth, he would then sooth any possible pain with his moist tongue.

The kisses went lower, marking her beautiful white skin and dipping his tongue into her bellybutton sensuously, while her back arched off the bed. When he reached her neatly trimmed curls, she knew he could smell her arousal, which was now mingled with his own.

"You smell so damn good" he said breathlessly. "I've imagined this scene so many times before. How good you would taste. How flushed your pretty little puzzy would looked like." She squirmed at the sound of his dirty talk, and he immediately noticed. "You like that word, don't you?" A faint nod, her eyes focused on his. His smile was mischievous.

She never thought Booth was a prude in bed. Although he might be very uncomfortable any time the topic of 'sex' would come up, she always imagined him being a lot more open about it during intercourse. But listening to the word 'puzzy' coming out of his mouth was a lot more arousing than she had ever imagined.

His tongue slowly plunged into her dripping core, lapping up her essence. He licked her from bottom to the top, until he reached a point just below her clit, lingering a bit there before making his way back down. When he reached her entrance, he could taste his own arousal among her inebriating fluids, and felt his cock throb painfully. Reaching with both hands, he separated her folds lightly and exposed her opening to his intense gaze, allowing his tongue to dip inside her thoughtfully.

Her body was on fire. No man had ever given her so much pleasure before. He repeated the whole process several times before moving his talented mouth to her untouched clit. Gripping it with his lips, he sucked her rapidly, until the pleasure became too intense and she felt the familiar trembling once more as a second orgasm overtook her.

His mouth continued to suck on her until her body stopped quivering. After regaining control of her body functions, her hand gripped his shoulder, urging him move up her body, until they were face to face. She kissed his jaw, cheek, eyebrows, forehead, nose; every part of his face she could reach and, at last, his mouth. She slipped her tongue pass his parted lips to taste herself on him, moaning loudly.

"Is this how you imagined your night ending?" He asked when they parted. She smiled.

"With my drunken partner having his way with me? No."

His laughter echoed the room. This time, she identified happiness in the throaty sound.

"I might be drunk, but this is real." She suddenly got serious, and his smile diminished. "Something wrong?"

Her gaze was intense, and for a moment she saw concern in his eyes.

"All of this," she started, taking a deep breath before continuing, "This is not just because you're intoxicated, is it?"

The uncertainty in her voice was obvious, and his hand came to her face, removing the damp hair off of her forehead tenderly before planting a kiss to the corner of her mouth.

"Well, I probably wouldn't be here if I wasn't drunk, Bones. But I promise you this is not something I'll regret later. Not after everything that happened tonight."

Satisfied with his answer, she gave him a kiss on the lips before reaching down between their bodies to grab his once-again-hard erection.

"I wish I could pay you back for the cunnilingus," she said matter-of-factly, her choice of words making his grin widen, "But I don't think I can wait to have you inside of me. Is that ok with you?"

"It's more than ok, Bones. I don't think I can wait much longer either"

His statement seemed to please her, and before they knew it, she had positioned his member at her entrance once more as he thrust his hips forward, filling her again.

It was like coming home.

Their love-making continued for a while longer, both of them enjoying the feeling of each other's bare and sweaty skin. Their cries of ecstasy could be heard among the heavy rain still falling outside. When they seemed to be sated for the night, they fell asleep in each other's arms, with nothing more to be said or promised. In the morning, things would get a lot clearer and a lot more complicated. It would not be easy. They were both hurt and broken. It would take some time to heal all the wounds, but if there was something they had learned all these years, it was that everything happens eventually.

The center was holding again.

Finally.