Disclaimer: I do not own Bones, but I am obsessed!
Author's Note: I found some time to type today, and this little plot bunny jumped out. I have an idea where Booth is waiting for Brennan. I probably played a bit around with the dates, but such is the freedom of a fanfiction writer. Let me know if you are interested in a part two. Enjoy.
Countdown: Part One
Temperance Brennan found herself sitting at her office desk tapping a pencil. She was supposed to be looking over some Jeffersonian expense reports before she sent them off to Cam, but her eyes were unfocused and the rhythmic tapping was the only sign that the scientist was even in the building.
"Sweetie." Angela's voice called out as she entered the room.
Brennan continued to tap the pencil, staring off into space.
"Earth to Bren?"
The tapping finally stopped and Brennan looked up at her friend. Blinking her eyes twice, she focused on the artist. "I'm sorry, Angela, did you need something? I'm quite busy today."
"Yeah, I can see that." Angela scoffed. "I just wanted to say hello."
"Bren, I've been on maternity leave for four weeks, and all you can say is hello?"
"Right, where is the baby?"
"With Hodgins. He loves having a baby strapped to his chest. He says it's never to early to train a scientist, although since the baby won't be able to see clearly for another few months, the microscope may have to wait."
"That's true." Brennan said seriously, but blankly. Angela noticed that her friend was staring off into space again.
"Sweetie, that was a joke. What has got you so distracted today?"
Brennan's expression gave nothing away, but she couldn't keep her eyes from sweeping over her desk calendar before addressing her friend. "I don't know."
"That is not an answer."
"It's nothing. It's silly."
Angela stared down the anthropologist, but got nothing out of her. She sighed and spoke again. "Anyway, I just stopped by to see if you wanted to join me for lunch. I've missed things around the lab. And I've missed my best friend."
"I saw you two days ago. We had dinner together. I changed a diaper. Don't you remember?"
Angela rolled her eyes. "Come on. You are getting out of the lab. Now! Come on, move!" The artist grabbed her friend's jacket and practically forced it on her. Before Brennan could protest further, Angela was pushing her out of her office. Angela had seen her friend's tell and slyly glimpsed at the desk calender. In the faintest pencil line, today's date was circled. However, there was nothing else written in the box to indicate why Brennan had noted today as something special.
The two friends sat at the diner sipping coffee while waiting for their entrees. Brennan was staring out of the window, her eyes unfocused and unblinking.
"Seriously, Sweetie. Spill. What is going on with you?"
Brennan sighed. "It's nothing. I just thought that today was going to be different."
"Different, how?" Brennan nervously twisted the dolphin ring that she always wore, a habit that Angela had never noticed from her usually confident best friend. Still, Brennan said nothing. Angela smirked a bit, "Look, I know that I'm not Studly..."
Brennan's eyes snapped up and met her friend for the first time during their lunch together. "This doesn't have anything to do with Booth. Why would you think that?"
Angela took a triumphant sip of her coffee, and said nothing as the waitress brought over their meals. She expertly diverted the conversation topic to pictures of the happy family, which she blithely shared with any waitstaff who was interested.
Seven hours later, Brennan was down in Bone Storage putting away the remains of a skeleton. It should have been a fascinating case. It was a body retrieved from a Civil War battlefield site, but a female and also from a time period closer to the War of 1812. Her theory was that the battlefield had once been a homestead and someone's young wife or daughter had been buried years before thousands of soldier's lost their lives. She would normally have tried to trace who may have owned the land during that time period and dredge through historical records, but her heart just wasn't in it today. She would have to finish the job tomorrow. She glanced at her watch and sighed.
"Dr. Brennan?" Brennan turned to see Wendell at the entryway.
"It's getting late. I just wanted to let you know that I was heading home. And I left that draft of my thesis chapter for you to look at when you have time."
"Thank you, Mr. Bray. I will take a look at it when I get a chance."
"Any chance that you will look it over tonight? I was hoping to do some edits this weekend, so if I could have it back in the morning or early afternoon, it would be helpful. I know it's late, but..."
Brennan glanced at her watch again. She sighed, "No, I have nothing else planned tonight. I'd be happy to look at it." She smiled at him, but she knew that it wasn't very convincing. Wendell could see that the smile didn't reach her eyes.
"Thanks, Dr. Brennan. I appreciate it. I'll see you tomorrow. Take care, and don't forget to eat some dinner. Agent Booth would yell at me if he knew that I knew how late it was and hadn't made you eat something."
Brennan turned away from her intern and back to the skeleton on the table. "I appreciate your concern. Goodnight, Mr. Bray."
Brennan's bedside clock was approaching midnight. She was watching the clock blink away the seconds, counting down to a new day. She wiped at her eye. It was irrational to be crying, Temperance Brennan did not cry. But she wiped at her eye again and grabbed her phone. No missed calls, no text messages, no voicemails. She threw her phone back against the table in disgust. Another minute flashed by. Another minute closer to the end of this wretched day. Another minute closer to tomorrow.
So what that Booth hadn't called? So what that she had hoped that today would be a different sort of day all-together? That was why she didn't make wishes, didn't hope, didn't have expectations. She learned when she was fifteen that wishes didn't come true. And she had stopped making them. Why had she let him try to convince her otherwise?
Yet another minute ticked by. She shut her eyes tight and took several deep breaths. She exhaled slowly, trying to clear her mind and stave off the pounding of her head. The last thing she needed now was a headache. But wait, the pounding wasn't in her head, it was at her door.
"Bones! I know you are in there. Open up. I need to talk to you."
She rubbed her temples. Of course, of course, he would turn up now. One minute until midnight, one minute until tomorrow. A minute away from being able to start over and move on. Sixty seconds to go, and here he was knocking on her door.
There was desperation in his voice as he called again. "Bones, please!"
She got off of her bed and made her way slowly to the door. Forty seconds until she thought that she would be able to open the door and face him again. But she had already reached said door. He was still knocking, but he was quieter now. Some neighbor had yanked open his own door and was telling Booth to shut up, but he was still standing. She could see him through the peep-hole. Thirty more seconds and she knew that he would go. If she could keep the door closed for half a minute, he would go away.
Unfortunately, her traitorous hand was undoing the latch at the door. She couldn't stop her trembling hand from then sliding over the lock. Now her stupid hand was on the knob, turning it slowly. Why couldn't she just wait twenty more seconds?
The door clicked, and Brennan had to jump back as Booth's arm forcefully pushed it open wide.
Her eyes were wide as she questioned him. "Booth?"
He stepped towards her. He glanced at his watch. "Shh. There's no time." He took one final stride towards his partner and captured her lips with his own. She stood still in shock for a moment as his warmth spread through her chilled body. And suddenly her own body was on fire and she was kissing him back just as desperately as he was kissing her. She kept kissing him even as his watch beeped the hour, proclaiming it a new day. She kept kissing him until the need for oxygen was so great that she was forced to pull back. The partners both sighed as their lips separated. Their lips separated, but they clung to each other even tighter.
Booth pressed his forehead to hers and whispered, "Hey, Bones."
Tears once again formed in her eyes, but she held them at bay. "I didn't think that you were coming. I thought that maybe you were still angry."
He chuckled. "I thought that maybe you were still impervious."
She pulled away slightly. "Why did you wait so long?"
"Why didn't you come to me? I've been waiting all day. Of all days, it had to be today. You and I both know that."
"Traditionally, it is the male who approaches the females when it comes to courtship."
"Well, last time I put myself out there, I was brutally rejected. I thought maybe you'd come to me, not make me risk my heart again." He paused, "My metaphorical heart."
She hit him without any malice. "I know what you meant, Booth. But I was the last one who told you about my feelings. I thought that it would be your turn to confess your feelings to me. And that this time, when you said something I would be ready." She shook her head and tenderly fingered the fabric of his shirt. "I really didn't think that you were coming. I was preparing myself for the possibility of moving on."
"Oh, how'd that go?"
"Not well at all."
He pulled her tighter and settled his lips along her jawline, kissing her gently. "Bones, don't you know that I will always come for you? I decided that you were more important than my pride. When I saw what day it was, I hoped that maybe it would mean something to you, too. This is it, Bones. This is my last chance. That's why I'm here. This is the day that I wished for, tell me that you wished for it too. Please." He was begging now, but he didn't care.
Her voice was so soft that despite the minimal distance separating them, he couldn't hear her. "What was that, Bones?"
Her voice became stronger as she spoke. "Yes, Booth. This is the day that I wished for. I'm so glad that you are here."
"Bones, seven years ago today, I picked you up from the airport and our partnership was born. We've had our ups and downs, but we've always had each other. Is it possible that we can have each other for the next thirty years?"
Brennan said nothing, just leaned over and placed a soft kiss on the side of his neck and the intimacy of the kiss made him shiver. He shivered again as he heard her next words. "I'd prefer fifty."
Booth couldn't help himself. He picked her up and twirled her around. She protested. "Booth! Your back!"
He set her down, laughing. "You'd fix it for me, wouldn't you?"
Booth once again leaned in and pressed his mouth to hers. He whispered against her lips, "Happy Anniversary, Bones."
She pulled away slightly. "It isn't technically our anniversary anymore."
"Shut up and kiss me, Temperance."
Brennan wrapped her hands around his neck and pulled him close. Just before she settled her lips on his, he heard her say, "Happy Anniversary."