Hey all! I'm so sorry that it's been so long, but I don't think I have a legit excuse. I don't usually do Author's Notes (as those of you who regularly read my stories can attest to…), but I figured it was necessary to explain my… recent absence. To be completely honest, the show has offered absolutely NO inspiration. NO ANGST! And Bones is supposed to THRIVE on angst… Not that I don't love them together, it's just… the producers are portraying Brennan as weak and always wrong, and Booth just gets off as innocent? What? I'm sorry—don't get me wrong, I LOVE Booth—but he is NOT INNOCENT!

Okay, that's the rant of a disillusioned writer… Here's where I claim not to own anything… Um, DUH! If I owned it, Booth would have a LOT of explaining, begging, and apologizing to do. (Again, not that I don't love him!)

Okay! I'm done now! Enjoy and leave me a REVIEW! You can even tell me you hate me for the loooooooong wait… (but I'd prefer it if you didn't) I hope this is enough angst for you!

"Well," he began, "her and Hannah met for drinks to talk about…everything…"

Booth looked out at the people gathered, and suddenly, he was too overwhelmed to speak. Mustering the strength, he took a deep breath and continued determinedly looking at the ground and avoiding everyone's worried gazes—along with a few accusatory ones.

"She was… upset, and she stormed out of the Founding Fathers and I… followed her a moment later—I was slightly delayed, and I meant to give her a little space to… cool down…. But by then, I'd lost her in the streets. By the time I realized that she must have gone to the Jeffersonian, I was… too late."

He finally raised his eyes up to meet those of the people gathered there. In the tense, worried silence, he allowed his gaze to meet each one.

Angela met his gaze first, and he knew immediately that whatever else, she was not fooled by his half-hearted explanation. There was a promise in her eyes that he would be speaking with her later.

Tearing his gaze away from Angela, he looked to Hodgins, but he was busy gazing, concerned, at his wife. Booth looked to Sweets, but the good doctor was uncharacteristically looking away, for once not trying to ascertain Booth's innermost thoughts.

He looked to Cam and was not surprised at what he saw. She was frightened, yes; concerned, definitely; and yet there was something else in her eyes… disappointment. In him. Disappointment so sharp he had to look away.

Caroline was looking straight at him, as if she could see to his soul. Hers was not of sympathy, yet there was no accusation either. Only deep… pity, and worry. It was as if she could see everything and nothing important all at the same time.

A chuckle escaped him—whether from pent up tension, exhaustion, whatever—at the thought of what Bones would say to that thought. He could just picture her.

"It is impossible for the mind to see everything and nothing, Booth. Those two concepts cannot exist in the same matter at the same time."

As quickly as it came, however, the laughter left. In its stead, it left a deep ache. It was possible that Bones would never again say something so… squinty to him. She may never come out of that surgery.

That thought was enough to cause his legs to give way beneath him. Luckily he was standing over a chair, so he landed on the edge ungracefully and he caught his head in his hands. He didn't know how long he stayed that way when the doors swung open and he looked up to see a man in a white lab coat striding toward him.

"Dr. Johnson," Cam greeted solemnly before Booth could speak. "How is Dr. Brennan?"

"Hello, Dr. Saroyan. She's made it through the surgery, but I'm afraid I can only discuss the specifics with Mr. Keenan. I was told that he rode in the ambulance with Dr. Brennan," the doctor said.

"I rode in the ambulance with Bones," Booth said, stepping forward.

The doctor gave him a confused look, but simply said, "Very well, Mr. Keenan. I'll just need to see your identification."

Booth sighed, "No, I'm not Max Keenan," he said. "My name is Seeley Booth. I am Dr. Temperance Brennan's partner, and I am—was her emergency contact for six years. This," he gestured to the people gathered behind him, "is her family."

"That may be, Mr. Booth," the doctor said firmly, "but her paperwork is clear. I'm afraid I will have to wait for Mr. Keenan's arrival."

Without another word, the doctor turned and walked back through the swinging doors. Booth turned back to his chair and visibly deflated into it. Taking a deep breath, he turned to his friends—his family—gathered around him.

"Max should be here… soon. I'm sure he'll update us then."

But his words sounded hallow, even to his own ears. There was no response.

"She's going to be okay." Again, there was no response.

"She has to be okay," he whispered to himself. "She just has to."

Okay, I know it was short, but it was the best I could do. Please, leave me a review or a Personal Message! I'd love to hear ideas about where to take this. I'm toying around with a few ideas, so I'd love to hear what you all think!

Anywho, I'll wait a day or two for responses, then try to get another chapter up! Thanks for your patience, guys!

Blessings,

bookdiva