To Come Through
Disclaimer: ::stares:: ::blinks:: ::stares again:: Yeah. I still don't own anything…but, you knew that from the stares, right?
Summary: Everyone has a breaking point. After Pelant's latest threats against the team, Booth reaches his and does something that pushes his partnership with Brennan past the point of no return. Set post-7x13.
Logistical Notes/Spoiler Warning on the Story: Fair warning to those are wary of season 7 spoilers (particularly unaired episodes 7x7 through 7x13). If you're worried about being spoiled….turn back now. Seriously. I mean it. I really mean it. Last chance for after this point, here be dragons...
So, anyone still with me?
If so, this story is a bit of an experiment for me in a few ways. First, there are some vague tidbits out there―on which I'm basing this story―that after Pelant's latest crime spree, something happens that "changes" Booth and Brennan's relationship forever to the point that it's been said people will ask how could one of them have done that. This is my take (a dash of spoilers, a dollop of vague snippets from the show's writers and actors, and a whole lot of speculation) on what happens. The second reason I wanted to write something like this was to do something that was slightly experimental in form, heavy on the dialogue, but short in word count. So, while each chapter will be linked to the one that comes before it, I'm hoping to keep it to two thousand words or less. I'm not quite certain how many chapters there will be, but my goal is to wrap it up before the finale actually airs in May. We'll see what happens. Now, with that said, onward and upward.~
Chapter 1 - Breaking Point
He stared lovingly at his daughter's eyes.
He loved watching the baby―looking at her when she was awake or asleep or even when she was cranky and yelling her head off. He loved her. In some ways, she was the best thing that had come out of all the murder and mayhem wrought by Jacob Broadsky the previous year. Of course, he loved her mother…but, with Christine, he knew that the love the daughter felt for her father would never go away. After the decision he'd made today, he wondered if the same could be true of her mother's love for him.
It took exactly fifty-four minutes for exactly what he expected to happen to actually happen.
Five minutes after he'd sent the email to Andrew Hacker and cc'd Sweets on it, a skittish and clearly pale psychologist had bounded into his office. He was sweaty and out of breath when he finally got to Booth's office, and he hoped against hope he wasn't too late to undue what Booth had done. But, Booth had outmaneuvered him again. After all, one didn't get to be a Ranger without some cunning. When Sweets got to his office, the door was shut, the lights were off, and the room was empty. Booth was gone. He'd had a headstart on Sweets, and therefore he had a headstart on his daughter's mother.
He made it to the house and gotten rid of Max with a brief explanation as to why he was home unexpectedly at such an early time into another twenty-nine minutes. That left approximately twenty minutes he had to set himself up and figure out if he could actually go through with answering her questions once she cornered him about what he'd done without telling her.
He heard the roar of her Prius motoring into their driveway, the jangle of her keys, the thud of the front door being slammed shut, and the pounding of her feet on the wooden stairs indicating that she'd finally outpaced him by three minutes. She'd made it home only fifty-one minutes after he'd sent the email.
And, when she began to move systematically from room-to-room in search of him, he was surprised that she didn't come straight to their bedroom. He'd taken the baby there and sat with his back pressed against their bed's headboard at a slight angle, the baby laying on his chest as father stared at daughter. Then, after another two minutes, he heard the tell-tale clips of Brennan's heels on the hardwood floor of the hallway outside the master bedroom. Shortly after that, her bedraggled and confused face appeared in the doorway of their bedroom. Her eyes were slightly wild, and she seemed to be gasping for breath―no doubt because she'd been rushing to find him since he'd sent the email, left the Hoover, and turned off his cell phone.
At last, as she took a step towards the bedroom, careful to keep her voice low and modulated even as he saw the surprise and hurt and rejection and fury in her eyes.
"Why did you do this?" she finally asked. "Tell me, Booth. Why?"