Hello! It feels like we're well into the hiatus, but it's only been a few weeks! Booooo. So here's a little something from Season 6, when things also seemed sad and grim to our favorite FBI agent (but maybe not so much for us shippers!)

Special thanks to Laffers and JM Haughey for the back and forth, and to the lovely and comma savvy Angela Leigh for the beta work!

From Daredevil in the Mold.

Her phone didn't ring much anymore.

True, there were still cases, and she was called for those, but other than that, her phone was quiet.

She'd gotten used to it. It was part of her adjustment. Part of her acceptance. Part of the new, upside down world she was learning to live in.

Booth didn't call anymore.

She missed him. Beyond missing her chance, she missed him.

Her old, logical self would say that was ridiculous. She saw him all the time.

Her current self, the one navigating this new life, understood that his physical presence wasn't enough to fill the void his emotional absence left.

She missed him dropping by with dinner for her. She missed him calling to tell her that Parker had a homework question for her. She missed the calls when something occurred to him late at night. She missed the calls when he really didn't have anything to say but "see you tomorrow." She missed the calls that meant he cared about where she was, all the time.

She missed that phone ringing, knowing he would be on the other end, because they didn't do that now.

So when the phone rang at 9:42 PM, she expected it to be Cam with a case, because it was never Booth anymore.

"Brennan," she answered without looking up from the report she was working on.

"Temperance," a shaky voice came through the line and she recognized it in an instant. "It's—''

"Hannah, what's wrong? Where's Booth?" The late call, the tremor in Booth's girlfriend's voice, filled Brennan with terror.

"He's not hurt. It's not…it's not that."

"Oh." Relief flooded her. "I'm sorry. I thought—"

"He proposed."

It took Brennan a few seconds to process the words, a second more to recover from the shock, and one more to school her voice in an effort to disguise the anguish that was crippling her regular breathing.

"Well, that's…congratulations, Hannah. I'm very happy for you."

"I said no."

"What?" She froze in place.

"I can't…I mean… you know, Temperance. I've always said I wasn't the marrying kind. I thought he understood that."

Brennan closed her eyes, the relief she felt at war with the devastation she knew her partner must be feeling. "Where is he?"

"I'm not sure. I left him in the park, near the fountain, about an hour ago. I thought…can you go? Do you have any idea where he'd be?"

"I'll find him." She was already putting on her coat, grabbing her keys.

"Thank you, and..." Hannah hesitated. "Take care of him. You're the one he really needs. He only thinks it was me."

Brennan opened her mouth to protest but couldn't find the words before Hannah spoke again.

"Goodbye, Temperance."

Brennan began to respond, but realized that Hannah had already disconnected the call. It was just as well. She had nothing left to say to her, really.

She just needed to find Booth.