Disclaimer: Bones is not mine. In the words of creator Hart Hanson, "Rats!"

Summary: It's four in the morning, but few people in the Booth household are actually asleep.

Author's Note: I'm so desperate for a new episode, you don't even know. This is the only way I can keep sane, by coming up with little stories about Booth, Brennan, and their baby (whose real name I will not mention). Ugh. January 12 needs to come faster. And then can we just skip a few months until it is spring? This weird schedule is taxing to my patience :/

Also, Happy New Year!

Don't forget to check out my other Bones fanfictions. It would mean a lot.


The sound of plaintive wailing jerked Seeley Booth from fitful slumber. It was with a shocked gasp that he came to, and it took him a moment to collect his bearings; to remember why exactly there was an infant in the bedroom when there hadn't been, for many years now. But then the events of the day previous rushed on fast-forward through his brain, and the brown-haired FBI agent had to smile as he glanced to his left.

Temperance Brennan was not normally a deep sleeper. Tonight, however, was the one exception.

Booth reached out and tucked a strand of stray hair behind Brennan's ear, marveling at how she could look at once both utterly exhausted and breathtakingly beautiful. It was the mystery of the female species, he supposed. That, and the sheer unrelenting power of their spirit. Because not many women solved crimes and delivered a baby, all in one day. Nor would most insist on going home mere hours after the ordeal, but his Bones had never been one to conform.

She had always been delightfully unpredictable, and now, hers and his newest progeny was beginning to display signs that she intended to be just like Mommy.

Booth disentangled himself from the temptingly comfortable bed, deciding it would be best if he got the baby, instead of his weary partner. He wanted Brennan to steal as much rest as possible, even if it was only a minute extra. So, after a last peek at the aforementioned forensic anthropologist, the second-time father quietly maneuvered his way over to the quivering basinette. Booth couldn't help the unconscious coo that escaped his lips as Cecelia Christine Booth came into view.

Tiny, wrinkled and fragile, with two beating fists and two legs all akimbo, Booth thought his daughter was just about perfect. He loved everything about her, right down to the scrunchy pink countenance currently yowling in hunger.

"Aw, Cece, don't cry... Daddy's here, I got ya," Booth cajoled, scooping up the restless girl and rocking her against his bare chest. His soothing skills must have been out of practice, because poor Cecelia's sobs became significantly more pronounced, causing Brennan to stir. "Shh... sweetheart..."

Too late. Brennan's voice was thick with fatigue as she called out, "Booth?"

"Here, Bones," Booth responded gently, and Brennan rolled with a grimace to face him. He grinned wryly down at her. "You stay there, okay? I'll bring her into bed with us. I know you're sore so I'll get a pillow too - easier on the arms."

"Mm-hmm," the woman murmured, blinking away the dregs of sleep from her eyes as she pushed herself up. Within moments, Booth was back beside her with the precious cargo in hand. He passed Cecelia and the pillow off to Brennan, helping her situate both until she waved him off exasperatingly. "Booth, I'm perfectly capable of guiding my own nipple, thank you."

"Are you sure you-"

"Yes, quite sure."

"Because I could-"

"Booth!" Brennan laughed aloud, and he had the grace to look sheepish as the special agent explained,

"Sorry, a little nervous. It's... been a while."

"Even so, I highly doubt Rebecca required much aid when it came to breastfeeding Parker. Most babies are innately aware of what they are supposed to do," Brennan teased.

"Yeah, but this- this is different," Booth said simply. He smiled, and Brennan returned the gesture. Perhaps it was all this time she had spent around Booth, accruing experience in matters of the heart, but Brennan thought she understood. This was different, because they were a family now; an actual family. And given all the pair had been through over the last seven years... over the course of their lives, even... well. Suffice to say, that beautiful newfound bond was something neither wished to see come to ruin. It was too important.

The two settled back against the headboard, and Booth wrapped an arm around Brennan. His other hand snuck into the fuzzy white blanket currently swaddling Cecelia, fingers brushing and stroking the soft warmth of the baby's skull.

"I've imagined this moment for so long, it's almost surreal to finally be living it," Booth whispered, a mixture of awe and fierce protectiveness swelling up within the confines of his chest. He watched Cecelia suckle contentedly, Brennan relax into the foreign sensation, and sunlight begin peaking over the horizon. Even the silence seemed to intimate, this is your new reality. This is home.

"I agree. Nine months she was inside me, a part of me, and to hold her in my arms at last- it's a very intense feeling, Booth."

"Best feeling in the world, isn't it, Bones?" Booth nudged the woman playfully. "A parent's love for their child. You can't find anything deeper - anything more special - than that."

"I don't know, I look at you and..." Brennan trailed off, growing introspective for a beat. Then she tilted her face up so Booth could see it clearly, her sharp features resplendent in the early light of dawn. They locked eyes and Booth was instantaneously lost to the charged emotion swirling in Brennan's. "Well. I find it just as special a feeling."

She blushed adorably then, gaze retreating downwards, back to the infant nuzzling at her breast. "Different. But equally special."

"Aw, you ain't so bad yourself, Bones," Booth ribbed, knocking his forehead against the side of his partner's dark head before giving it a loud and sloppy smooch. He felt more than saw the tremors of ill contained laughter ravaging her body.

"Oh Booth. Not while our daughter's trying to eat," Brennan admonished, flecks of mirth still coloring her voice even as she tried to act stern. It was an attempt doomed to fail, and the normally chary forensic anthropologist decided to let Booth's contagious humor infect her as well. "Daddy makes fun of Mommy a lot, doesn't he, Cece? He's very silly-"

"Hey, that's not fair! Mommy makes just as much fun of Daddy, and don't let her persuade you otherwise! Not for one minute, ya hear!"

"She'll listen to me; she likes me better."

"Only because you are provider of meals! Just you wait, once men gain the ability to lactate-"

"Booth, men will never be able to produce milk; they do not and will never have mammary ducts-"

"Well, you never know, technology is becoming so advanced that-"

"Regardless, science as yet has not progressed to that point."

"But when it does-"

"I'll still win, because she's a Mommy's girl. I can tell," Brennan gloated smugly, and she appeared so convinced of this fact, that Booth surrendered the mock argument, ceding victory to his chuckling companion.

"Yeah, yeah, yeah."

(It wasn't like he didn't already suspect Cecelia was going to end up a Daddy's girl... that princess would have him wound so tightly around her pinkie, why, there would be utterly no hope of ever coming undone!)

With a happiness so strong it was almost palpable, the pair cuddled together, wasting away the sunrise as they feasted on the sight of their small newborn daughter.

And like that, the first night came and went, both Booth and Brennan reassured by the knowledge that there would be many, many more similar to these in their future.

Because, they were a family now. And this? Was home.