Last chapter! Enjoy!

Chapter Twenty-One

Bernadette 'Bennie' Andrews passed away November 30th, 2011, just two and a half weeks after all her children were adopted.

Brennan and Booth, who had moved into the Hodgins' Estate, since Brennan's apartment served too small to house all four women...and Booth, were there when Bennie passed. The kids were at school at the time and Brennan had just walked in to talk to her, when she found her, laying still, as if peacefully sleeping.

Brennan had dealt with death before, it was her life, but never like this. There was the instance when she was a little girl, when she had walked in to see her elderly neighbor, dead, at the kitchen table. But she had been much too young to process that.

Now, this was somebody who she felt she knew very closely, like a second mother, though that was ridiculous, she told herself. She was in no way related to Bennie and she'd only knew her a few weeks. There was no way the bond she had had with her mother could be shared with some woman she barely knew.

But, even still, Brennan had felt close enough to Bennie that she'd cried when she found her, calling out tearfully for Booth, who'd run in immediately and was at her side in seconds.

He helped her to her feet and out of the room, before calling the coroner, and sitting with his sobbing girlfriend, while they waited for their kids to get home.

Thankfully, Bennie was out of the house before Stephanie came in with Cassie and Max. The girls all came in, cheerfully, their smiles disappearing when they saw their mother crying.

"What's wrong, Tem-Mommy?" Max asked, taking Brennan's hand. All the girls were trying to start calling Brennan 'Mom' instead of Temperance, which they'd previously called her.

Brennan smiled at the little girl, pulling her into her arms. "It's just my hormones, Max." she said, before wiping her eyes. "But, there's something your...father," she smiled sadly at Booth, who smiled back, "and I have to tell you."

Max nodded and went to go sit next to Cassie on the couch across from Brennan and Booth. Brennan told them that Bennie had passed away earlier in the day and the younger girls immediately burst into tears. Max threw herself into Brennan's arms and Cassie into Stephanie's while Booth came over to console them.

When they were all cried out, Brennan, still holding Max, took out her cell phone and alerted Angela and Hodgins, who called Cam, who alerted Sweets.

Soon, Caroline knew as well and everybody was gathering in Booth and Brennan's living room, candles lit in vigil, parents holding their smallest children, and older siblings holding on to each other.

"I can't believe she's gone." Kyle murmured, looking dazed. Angela had her arm around his shoulder while Tommy sat on her lap. Hodgins meanwhile had his arm around Kerry, while she held Michael in her arms, the little boy oblivious as he played with his sister's necklace.

Max and Cassie were snuggled together between Booth and Brennan, while Stephanie leaned her forehead on Brennan's shoulder.

"Well, Booth and I are going to cover all expenses for the funeral." Brennan said. "She's going to have the best that I can afford."

"Aw, Sweetie, you really don't have to do that. You already paid for her healthcare." Angela protested. "Jack and I will cover the funeral expenses."

"Well, you at least have to let us help." Brennan offered.

"Okay, maybe you can buy the flowers then." Angela said, trying to instill humor into the situation.

But Brennan, ever literal, nodded. "Alright then. We'll but the flowers."

Cam raised her hand. "I'll pay for the casket. I know where to get the best. And Bennie deserves that."

"I'll talk to the priest at my church. He'll do the service for free. Such a good man." Caroline insisted.

"I'll talk to the funeral home where I had my parents' wake." Sweets said. "They do wonderful work and they'll do it for half-price."

"Okay, okay!" Angela said. "Enough! All that's left to pay for is the grave plot, which you cant bet we're gonna get at the swankiest cemetery in DC."

Hodgins nodded in agreement. "Yeah. Bennie's gonna get the most respectful and heartfelt rest ever." he said, with conviction.

Everybody was in agreement and a week later, December 6th, every single one of them was gathered around Bennie's grave, not a dry eye to be seen, as they each said their goodbyes.

Booth had his arms around Brennan, who in turn had hers around Stephanie, who had Cassie and Max pressed to her sides.

Each of the children were dressed in black mourning dress and each one had a white rose, which they placed on the casket, before it was lowered into the ground.

As they were all leaving, Brennan turned back once more, looked at the hole in the ground, a tear falling down her cheek as she whispered, "Thank you." and followed Booth and their kids out of the cemetery and to the Diner, where everybody was meeting.

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Two months later...

"Bones!" Booth shouted through the door. "Hurry up! We got kids that gotta get out the door and you and Stephy are using up the only two bathrooms in the whole house!"

"One minute!" Brennan called back, fixing her hair in the mirror, before getting to her make up. She was now two weeks away from giving birth and maneuvering around the bathroom was becoming increasingly difficult, even with the larger size.

Suddenly, Brennan was met with and uncomfortable wetness between her legs, and she looked down, gasping as she saw the puddle of water between her feet.

Brennan's eyes widened and she turned towards the door. "Booth?" she called, worriedly.

Suddenly the door burst open and Booth stood there looking around wildly. "What? What's wrong?"

Brennan rolled her eyes at him. "Relax, Booth. I'm fine. It's just...my water broke."

Booth's eyes widened and he looked down, taking note of the puddle before bringing his eyes back to hers and grabbing her hand, pulling her out of the bathroom. "Baby time!" he called as he led her down the hall. "Stephanie!" he called, as they reached the other bathroom.

Stephanie, alarmed by her father's urgent tone, popped her head out of the bathroom. "Yeah?" she asked.

Booth looked at her, frantically. "Get your sisters ready for school and put them on the bus, okay? Your mother's going into labor. I'll send Aunt Angie for you after school to bring you to the hospital. Alright?" Stephanie nodded. "Here's some money for lunch. Five each, okay." he handed her the money, which she took, before he kissed her forehead. "Kiss Cassie and Max for me. Okay?"

Stephanie nodded, and grabbed Brennan's hand, squeezing it tightly. "Good luck, Mom." she said.

Brennan smiled at her. "Thanks, Stephy, but luck is pointless. I'll see you later, though." she said, before Booth could drag her away.

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Two hours later, Brennan was screaming in pain.

"Aaah!" she screamed, while Booth held her hand. "Ow! This hurts like Hell!"

Booth chuckled, between gasps of pain. "I thought you didn't believe in Hell, Bones."

Brennan glared at him. "Shut up!" she snarled.

Booth's smile vanished and he instantly ran a wet cloth over her forehead. "Sorry, Babe, just trying to lighten the mood. I'll shut up now."

Brennan laughed slightly, but then grimaced as another shot of pain went through her. "Ah! Where is that damn doctor?" she whined.

"Doctor Bana!" Booth called out, and a moment later, their doctor came through the door.

"You called?" The good doctor said, smiling calmly.

"My wife is in pain." Booth said. "Can't you do something for her?"

"Let me just check her dilation." Dr. Bana said, taking a seat and looking under Brennan's sheet. "No, I'm sorry Agent Booth, but she's at least seven inches dilated. I give it about an hour before she's ready to start pushing. Nothing we could give her would take full effect by then. Besides, it would hurt the baby."

"No, don't hurt the baby!" Brennan exclaimed. "Whatever you do, don't hurt my baby."

Dr. Bana smiled. "We wouldn't think of it, Temperance. And what I meant about hurting the baby was that it would make him very uncomfortably disoriented. It wouldn't physically hurt him. Not in most cases, anyway."

"Her." Brennan corrected. "We're having a girl."

Dr. Bana nodded. "Yes, of course. I forgot. I apologize. Anyway, I'll be back in about twenty minutes to see how you're doing. Agent Booth, I expect you'll keep coaching her?" Booth nodded. "Good. I'll be back."

When the doctor left, Brennan turned her head in Booth's direction. "Why did you call me your wife?" she asked.

"What?" Booth asked.

"When you said I was in pain, you referred to me as your wife, even though Dr. Bana knows we aren't married. Why?"

Booth blushed. "Oh, well...I...I guess it just popped out. You know? I mean...we've been watching so many movies where women give birth and that's always what the father says. I guess I was just copying what they were saying and I just...I forgot to replace wife with girlfriend. I'm sorry."

Brennan smiled, softly. "It's okay." she whispered.

Booth looked up. "Really? You don't mind?"

Brennan shook her head. "I find that I quite like it, actually."

Booth grinned. "So does that mean...?"

Brennan shook her head. "Not quite yet. My beliefs about marriage are the same as they've always been. But maybe...maybe they'll change. One day."

Booth smile turned into a frown as she went into another contraction and he started to coach her through it.

Nearly an hour later Brennan was ready to push.

As she pushed, she tried to hypnotize herself into forgetting about all the pain by thinking. She thought about her life and how it had changed over the last decade. About how Seeley Booth had changed her life. About how in the beginning she liked him, then she hated him, and then how she began to like him again, a like that gradually turned to love, such an amazing and capturing love that caused her to change and evolve, for the better.

Now she had three daughters and was about to have another. And he had her thinking about marriage.

Marriage!

She's never wanted to be married before and now she found herself actually considering it!

But then again, this was Booth. And nearly everything with Booth was more than worthwhile. Marriage, most likely, would be amazing with him. They were already living together, had three, almost four, children together. Brennan smiled inwardly. She could definitely see herself calling Booth her husband.

She looked at him, dabbing at her forehead with a wet cloth and coaching her through one of the toughest things she'd ever had to do in her entire life.

"Booth!" she gasped, through the pain.

Booth looked at her. "Bones? Are you alright? You're not in too much pain, are you?"

Brennan shook her head, smiling widely. "No, no! I'm fine. I just...I want to ask you something!" she winced as the doctor helped her through another large push.

"Can't it wait, Babe?" Booth asked.

Brennan shook her head, taking a deep breath as she stopped pushing to take a couple second to breath. "No. I have to ask now or I'll lose the nerve."

"Okay, then. What is it?" Booth asked.

"Will you marry me?" Brennan blurted.

Booth gave her a quizzical look. "But, just an hour ago you said..."

"I know what I said!" Brennan exclaimed, as a very painful contraction hit her. "But I've had some time to think, and I mean really think about it, and I've decided that I loved it when you called my your wife and I would love even more to call you my husband and I don't care how antiquated a ritual marriage is!" She moaned in pain. "I love you so much and I would love to be your wife."

Booth smiled at her and leaned down to kiss her, softly on the lips. "Okay, Bones, but first let's get through labor. Then we'll talk about a date and location."

Brennan grinned and nodded, readying herself for another contraction.

"Give us a big one, Temperance!" Dr. Bana instructed.

Brennan nodded and pushed as hard as she could, letting out an uncontrollable scream as she did.

Soon, her heart leapt as she heard a baby's loud, incessant, shrieking cry.

Brennan smiled as she realized that that was the cry of her daught, her baby girl.

She looked down her body to where Dr. Bana was holding the baby in her arms, smiling.

"Congratulations, Temperance, Seeley, it's a girl. But, of course, you know that."

Brennan nodded. "Can I see her?" she asked, weakly.

"One minute, please?" she said, bringing the baby over to wrap her in a blanket, and bringing to little pink bundle back over to place in her mother's arms.

Brennan sat up a little and looked down at the baby in her arms. The baby looked back up at her with wide, cloudy blue eyes. She had a tuft of dark brown hair on the top of her head and her bottom lip stuck out in a pout. Brennan smiled at her. "Hi, Baby." she said. "I'm your Mommy." her chin quivered as she said this and a tear fell down her cheek. "Oh, Booth, she's so beautiful."

Booth grinned. "She looks like you." he said, smiling.

Brennan scoffed. "She does not. She clearly has your facial structure, and your nose. The only thing she has in common with me is those blue eyes of hers."

Booth grinned and stroked the baby's cheek with his finger. "And that adorable pout. God, I bet she's gonna get away with just about everything when she gives us that pout."

"You mean when she gives you that pout. Having it myself, I am immune." Brennan said, smiling triumphantly.

"Oh yeah, and who was it that gave Max that extra cookie last week when she turned those big green eyes on you?" Booth retorted.

Brennan sighed. "Okay, once." she said. "Are you going to use that against me forever?"

Booth grinned. "Every chance I get." he said, before leaning in to kiss her, softly.

Brennan laughed and looked down at their baby girl again, smiling as the baby sucked on her fist and squinted up at her.

Brennan laughed again. "Booth, look." she said.

Booth looked down at the baby and groaned. "Not another squint!" He whined.

Brennan laughed. "Like mother, like offspring." she said.

Booth chuckled. "In this case, it's like daughter, Babe. Which reminds me, what are we gonna call this little peanut?" he poked the baby in her nose and she sneezed. Booth chuckled, adoring his baby girl.

Brennan smiled. "I was thinking about that I think we should name her Brianna."

"Brianna." Booth tried it out. "I like it. Why specifically that name?" he asked.

"No reason. I just like it. And I thought Fate could be her middle name, since that's what we've been calling her."

Booth nodded. "That sounds good. We could call her Brianna Fate Bernadette Brennan Booth."

"Bernadette?" Brennan asked.

Booth nodded. "I thought we agreed we were gonna name her after Bennie in some respect. And Brianna Fate doesn't exactly scream Bennie. You know?"

Brennan nodded. "I understand your meaning. But I don't want her to have my last name."

Booth's eyebrows rose. "Oh?"

Brennan nodded. "Yes. I figured if we really are getting married, and I was going to change my name, her having my name seems very pointless. Don't you think?"

Booth chuckled. "Not entirely pointless." he said. "I mean, we already have three girls, all with different last names."

"That's because they're all adopted." Brennan chuckled. "And it felt wrong to give them different last names, especially since they're so old already."

Booth shrugged. "Doesn't really matter, I guess. They're still ours."

Brennan smiled. "Yes." she agreed. "They're all ours."

Booth smiled and leaned down to kiss her, thanking God at the same time for this beautiful woman, the child they created between them, and the three they already had at home.

THE END

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