AN: If it's 11:00 pm where I am, it's midnight where she is so . . . HAPPY BIRTHDAY, TANTEMARY! True story, she was the first person who ever asked me to write a birthday fic for her. As it happens, she asked months ago so in the meantime I've written a couple of others but the point is, she was the first one and - ain't gonna lie - I had a bit of a Sally-Fields-at-the-Oscars moment when she did. It was kind of like being asked to sit at the cool kids table in the lunchroom (before they dump their food trays on top of your head because they're still the cool kids and you're not so . . . nevermind).

Because she was the first and just because she's Mary and she's fabulous, I wanted to make her story extra special. Lucky for me, in the interim bangelforeverandalways sent me a great prompt involving Angela somehow getting her hands on Brennan's phone. Cha ching! One extra-special story coming up!

Thanks very much to Alanna1231 for her awesomesuperiffic beta skills!

P.S.
If I did this right, you're going to want to avoid eating or drinking while you read.
If I didn't do it right . . . no, I'm going to think positive. No food or drink allowed.
You've been warned.
Sincerely,
Me

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"Tell me again why we're so excited about a sale for previously worn clothing?"

In the seat beside Brennan, Angela tutted. "Sample sale, honey. It's a sample sale for Anna Sui. And don't knock the previously worn," she added pointedly. "Some of my favorite pieces are vintage, like that green sweater you like so much."

Brennan turned her eyes from the road just as they passed a sign announcing the city limits for Berryville, Maryland. "I don't really care for that sweater."

"What?" Angela's eyes widened in surprise. "You always make a comment when I wear it!"

"Well, yes," Brennan admitted. "But not because I like it."

Angela huffed and waved toward the road ahead. "You know what? Just drive. I'll give you directions when we get closer to Annapolis."

"I'm sorry, but I'm just not fond of clothing with feathers . . ." An electronic chirp coming from the bag at Angela's feet cut off the attempt at apology. "That alert tone belongs to Booth. Would you mind checking the message for me? The phone is in the inside pocket on the left."

"I'm sure it wouldn't dare be in the inside pocket on the right." Angela's disgruntled mumbling didn't quite reach Brennan's ears as she fished through the purse until she came up with the phone in hand.

cant find c's stroller. did u 4get 2 leav it?

"Booth wants to know if you have Christine's stroller," she translated.

Brennan tossed a glance over her shoulder as if she could see into the trunk. "Yes, I do. I meant to leave it in the garage but we were running late and it slipped my mind."

Yes, sorry.

Angela hit send and then gave into the nosy impulse to look through the previous messages. The juxtaposition of Brennan's very exact method of texting beside Booth's much more casual habit of abbreviating everything he possibly could made her smile.

When the phone beeped again, she scrolled down to read what Booth had just sent.

k. gonna buy anothr 4 my car

"He says he's going to buy another one for his car," she parroted.

Brennan nodded. "That's probably for the best. Oh," she exclaimed, "ask him to also pick up more diapers and wipes while he's in the store."

Angela dutifully tapped into the phone. Add diapers and wipes to your shopping list, please.

will do. fyi, need 2 stop by ofc but aftr store/park shld b home by 4.
have fun w/angela
dont let her talk u n2 buyng anythg stupid :)

Angela frowned at the phone. "I heard that."

"What?" Brennan shot her a curious glance.

sexy is good tho :D

"Huh?" Distracted by Booth's last transmission, Angela only barely looked up. A wickedly inappropriate idea popped into her head. She scrambled to come up with something to throw Brennan off. "Oh, nothing. Booth . . . uh . . . He just had a question about . . ." Her brain went blank. "Uh . . . about the . . . the data I recovered from April Warner's computer."

Sexy is always good, she tapped out on the phone.

"Is there anything I should know?"

Do you have any suggestions?

"What?" Angela looked up, startled and just a bit guilty. "Oh! Oh, about April Warner, you mean? No. No, it's all, you know . . ." she shrugged vaguely, "technical stuff."

dont i always? :) since i ripped that red thing mayb u could find anthr 1? i likd that.
obvs 2 much :-D

"I know technical stuff," Brennan complained, unaware of Angela's mischief. "Booth is the one who doesn't understand the jargon. You should be telling me instead."

Red it is.

"Besides, Booth will just . . ."

"Honey!" Angela's voice rose to a screech as she tapped frantically into the phone. "I can't concentrate on two things at once. You just drive."

If you're going to the office anyway, maybe you could bring home a set of handcuffs. ;)

Insult laced Brennan's tone. "If it's something related to the case, I should be informed . . ."

dont even think abt it
told u no more cuffs till u promise 2 respct the safe word

Angela barely managed to turn her laughter into a cough, and the cough quickly turned into a fit of choking.

"Are you alright?" Now, Brennan was solicitous. "I have water if you need something to drink."

Not trusting herself to speak, Angela just shook her head.

You're exaggerating.

exagg?! i almst broke the headboard!
safe word means stop immed not 5 min more!

Angela bit the inside of her cheek so hard, she tasted blood. Her shoulders began to shake.

respct the safe word bones! no more cuffs till u swear

Brennan's eyes narrowed as suspicion finally took root. "It seems to be taking an usually long time to relay that information to Booth."

Maybe you should say the safe word a little louder.

"Angela?"

louder?! i was yellng waffle at the top of my lungs!

Nothing short of being bound and gagged herself could have prevented Angela's outburst. Completely overcome, she leaned forward and laughed uncontrollably, her breathing reduced to harsh pants between guffaws.

"Angela, what are you doing? What have you been texting to Booth?" The car's speed increased as Brennan paid less attention to her driving than the hysterically laughing woman beside her. "Does Booth know he's exchanging messages with you and not me? Angela? Angela!"

Angela finally managed a modicum of control and sat up. One look at Brennan's irate expression sent her into peals of merriment again.

"Give me that phone. Right now." Brennan's jaw set as she made a wild grab for it.

Still laughing, tears streaming, Angela scrunched against the window and slapped at Brennan's grasping hand. "Waffle!" she cried, now giggling so hard she couldn't breathe. "Waffle!"

Brennan's jaw fell open in shock.

"How do . . . You didn't . . . GIVE ME THAT PHONE RIGHT NOW!" The car swerved wildly over the thankfully empty road as she struggled to snatch the small piece of plastic away.

"Waffle!" Angela choked out as she burrowed harder against the door. "Waffle! Respect the safe word! Respect the safe word!"

"GIVE . . . ME . . . THAT . . ." Brennan's hand scrambled across the other woman's arm and fingers as the car careened wildly down the highway.

Behind them, blue lights flashed and a siren whooped.

Brakes squealed as Brennan slammed to a stop and threw the car into park. Forgetting all about the seat belt, she surged across the center console. "Give it to me!" she yelled. "Give me the phone!"

"Waffle!" Angela snorted, almost crying with laughter, and batted the seeking hands away. "Help! Waffle! Waffle!"

The sharp rap of knuckles against glass finally got their attention. Glaring a promise of retribution at her best friend, Brennan sat back in her seat, chest heaving, and lowered the window. The uniformed officer bent down to peer inside the vehicle.

"Ma'am, do you have any idea how fast you . . ." Recognition dawned as he looked past the driver to the passenger seat. "Hello, Mrs. Hodgins."

Angela wiped tears from her cheeks and managed to control herself long enough to smile back. "Sheriff Abrams! You remember me!"

His lips curved in a tight smile. "I don't have many prisoners who get married in my jail." His attention moved to Brennan. "Ma'am, the speed limit on this road is 55 and you were going almost 70. I also observed this vehicle swerving erratically." His eyes narrowed sternly. "Have you consumed any alcoholic beverages?"

"No, I haven't been drinking!" Brennan glowered at Angela again. "I was just trying to retrieve my phone . . ." Suddenly, she swerved across the center console once more. "GIVE . . . IT . . ."

Angela howled with laughter and shrank back against her door. "Waffle! Waffle!"

"Ladies." The sheriff tried to interrupt. "I insist you stop this . . ."

"GIVE ME THE PHONE!"

"No means no, sweetie," Angela sang, batting away Brennan's hands. "Respect the safe word!"

Sheriff Abrams rapped his knuckles against the roof of the car in a futile attempt to get their attention. "License and registration, please!"

Brennan finally managed to unbuckle her seat belt and launched herself at Angela. "GIVE IT TO ME!"

"Waffle!" Angela was lost in a fit of giggles as the they struggled. "Help! Somebody! Waffle!"

"Okay, that's it!" Sheriff Abrams opened Brennan's door and tried to separate the two women. "Ladies! Ma'am! Stop! Both of you . . . Ouch!" He snatched his hand back and looked in disbelief at his bleeding finger. "You bit me! Which one of you bit me?" When they continued to ignore him, he squared his jaw, put his hands on Brennan's shoulders and pulled her out of the car. "That's it. I'm taking the two of you in! Mrs. Hodgins! I'm going to need you to get out of the vehicle!"

Angela opened her door and landed in a heap on the graveled roadside shoulder, still laughing, unable to stand up.

Brennan fought to free herself from the sheriff's hold. "Give me that phone, Angela!"

"You're both coming with me!" Sheriff Abrams announced. "Which one of you bit me?"

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"You got arrested?" Hodgins was obviously torn between shock and surprise and not a little pride as he stood outside the jail cell looking in at Angela. "Here? Again?" When he put Michael down, the little boy toddled to the bars and tried to stick his head through the gap between two of them.

"Mama!"

Booth bounced Christine in his arms and frowned at Brennan, who sat on a cot inside a separate cell. "You bit the sheriff? What the hell, Bones?"

Brennan stared daggers at Angela. "I didn't mean to bite Sheriff Abrams. I thought it was Angela's hand."

That confused Booth even more.

"Why did you want to bite Angela? You were just going shopping!"

Brennan opened her mouth to respond, looked at Angela's grinning face and changed her mind.

"It was nothing." She glared a silent warning at the other woman. "Just a misunderstanding."

The sheriff appeared at Booth's elbow, rattling his keys officiously as he opened the two cells.

"All right, you're all set. Dr. Brennan, you'll be notified of the date you'll have to appear in court to answer for the assault charge."

"I didn't assault -"

"Thank you, Sheriff Abrams. We'll be in touch." Booth silenced her with a hard grip on one elbow and a shove down the hallway. As soon as they were out of earshot, he leaned down and hissed in her ear. ""Bones, what in the hell . . ."

Trailing behind them, Angela's playful voice interrupted him. "Are you hungry, Jack? I'm hungry. Want to get some dinner on the way home? I'm in the mood for waffles . . ."

"Angela!"

When Brennan spun around and took a threatening step toward her, Angela bubbled with laughter and began to back down the hallway toward the cells.

Booth had had enough.

"Would you two stop it? What is wrong with you . . ." His voice died away as horrified suspicion dawned. He looked from one woman to the other. "Waffle . . . Angela, was that . . . Bones, did she . . ."

When Brennan avoided his gaze, he knew.

Hodgins was still clueless. "What is going on?"

Booth thrust Christine toward Brennan. "Bones, take the baby."

Brennan, who had reached out automatically, dropped her hands instantly. "I don't think that's wise."

He took one threatening step toward Angela, who squealed and danced back a few steps. "Come here, Angela!"

"Now, Booth," she teased as she skipped backward. "Don't make me say it!"

"Say what?" Hodgins asked, looking from Angela to Booth to Brennan. "What is going on?"

"Come here!" Still holding Christine, Booth followed after Angela.

"Booth! Angela!" Brennan was on their heels.

"Would someone tell me what is going on?" Hodgins demanded.

"When I get my hands on you . . ."

Booth left the growling warning unfinished as they neared the cells again. Sheriff Abrams looked up in surprise.

"Did you folks leave something?"

With a squeak, Angela ran into one of the empty cages and slammed the door shut behind her.

"Angela!" Booth roared. "Come out of there!"

"Waffle! Respect the safe word, Booth!" She collapsed in a helpless, snorting heap on the cot. "Respect the safe word!"

Michael ran to the bars again and banged on the iron bars with his little fists. "Waffle! Waffle!"

The sheriff threw confused looks at all of them. "Is there a problem here?"

"Would someone PLEASE tell me what's going on?" Hodgins asked again.

"Waffle!" Michael sang out. "Waffle!"

Inside the cell, overcome with laughter, Angela rolled off the cot and onto the floor.

Booth glared at Brennan as the sound echoed off the stone walls.

"I told you we should have used a different safe word."

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Mary, my spooky ghost friend, I hope your birthday is as lovely and awesome as you are! If this bit of silliness makes you smile even a little bit, my work here is done! Much love, kiddo! (Also, I'd like my room in the lake house painted a soft, pretty shade of rose. :-D)

Thanks for reading!