A/N: I do not own Bones, and the dialogue here from Judas on a Pole is meant to set the story in time and to celebrate the work of the writers of this story and that episode. Thank you to Huronia, Title Maven, for the title to the series.
"I guess, I guess I am just one of those people who doesn't get to be in a family."
"Hey...hey, Bones. There is more than one kind of family..."
Brennan gazed up at him, intent. He was rarely sure of what she took from what he said, but he can't, he can't just let her look like that. Desolate and resigned.
The sound of knuckles on glass interrupted. His finger dropped from her chin. They both looked over to see Zach smiling and waving them in.
"Let me guess. Zach got the job." Brennan smiled and pulled him with her into the comfort of her own makeshift family. Not...quite...his yet, but getting there, despite his reservations. The fact that he and Cam are...whatever they are...is not making matters any clearer, and not for the first time, Booth wondered if it was worth it, if he had needlessly complicated something already pretty complicated. Brennan leaned back into him as he opened the door to the diner to usher her in ahead of him. Her hair brushed his chin and her back pressed against his chest briefly as she leaned back to miss the edge of the door swinging out at them. The scent of her hair, her powder or perfume or face cream or whatever, triggered a memory and for a moment, it was as if he was back in that room, zipping up thatdress, slipping Roxie's hand through his arm as they headed to Joe's Gym.
As Booth clappped Zach on the shoulder with an open palm-Christ if he just somehow just signalled that they were Best Buds now or even worse, that they regularly talked to each other, he was going to kill Bones-an idea formed. Shit, Seeley, didn't you just realize that things were complicated enough?
But as he greeted the others, responding to Cam's surreptitious pinch of his ass with a wink and a quick stroke of his own hand over her cuvy behind, the idea wouldn't let him go. He had already started figuring out the details, and when, in an undertone, Cam asked about his plans for tonight, he put her off til tomorrow night, Saturday. Anticipation bloomed in his stomach. It was a good idea, would cheer Bones up, plus it would be fun. He ducked out early to let them finish their celebration without him and to start putting plans in place for tonight. He was taking a risk, that Bones hadn't made plans for tonight, but he thought he was pretty safe.
An hour later, having secured tickets and reservations for dinner, he texted Bones.
U have plans fr tnght?
No, Booth. Just staying in. Probably reading.
Want to do smthg w me?
Booth, I just want to read. "Licking my wounds," I believe you would call it.
All right then. What time?
We have rez at 7
What sort of attire?
Left you deets at ur apt
At my apartment?!...
Booth grinned, but didn't answer this one, nor did he answer the next two. She'd figure it out. He locked up her apartment behind him and headed out to the rental place to pick up his own clothes.
"Something wrong, Brennan? That's the fifth time you have checked your phone in the last minute." I looked up at Angela and made a face, shrugged.
"No. It's just Booth. He's not texting me back."
"Yes, of course. I just wanted him to answer a question and he is being obstinate." I turn away and Angela crosses to Hodgins. The impromptu party is winding down. Suddenly, I feel fatigue wash over me. It seems incredible that this is still the same day that my father both revealed himself and drove off without me again. Zach got his doctorate, a job. And now, now, I have agreed to go out with Booth when all I really want to do is get in a hot bath with a glass of wine and a book. I sigh and look at my phone one last time. Maybe I could cancel.
I did trust him, but this isn't a case, isn't anything special. Just a night in, by myself. And now we have reservations. I'm not hungry, but 7 is still hours away, I suppose it will be ok. I am intrigued-and a little bit irritated-by the fact that he left me the details of our night out at my apartment. I gave him that key for emergencies. I repress another sigh and as the others all gather their things to leave, I lean in and whisper to Zach.
"Congratulations again, Dr. Addy." He turns and beams at me. I feel a little upsurge of energy. I'm glad he is so happy.
"Thank you, Dr. Brennan. Did you see Agent Booth clap me on the shoulder with an open palm?"
I clap him on the shoulder again myself. "I did, Zach."
He looks at me shrewdly. "Thank you. Did you tell him what it meant?"
I laugh. "No. I didn't. You could probably torture him by pretending that he agreed to take you shooting or something."
Now it is Zach's turn to look alarmed. "No, Dr. Brennan. I think I'll just leave things the way they are. Agent Booth and I have an understanding." He smiles and dips to pick up his bag.
We all walk back to the Jeffersonian and see each other safely to our cars. As I park in my spot at home, I feel another little upsurge of energy. Trust me. What is Booth planning?
I unlock the door and think I can perceive briefly, before it dissipates, Booth's unique scent. Masculine and spicy and the leather of his jacket. I lock the door behind me and drop my keys on the table by the door. I always leave this little hall light on for when I return home, but I can see illumination on the far side of the living room as well. Walking into the familiar room, I can't see anything out of place, no notes on the table or counter, no blinking light on my answering machine. I cross to the wall sconce Booth has turned on near the bookshelf. Hanging from it is a garment bag. Booth bought me clothes? I reach up and with no little trepidation, unzip it from the top down. My breath stops for a minute when I see the black dress. Just like it? The same one? Surely not. We returned it to the clothing rental company. But when I let the garment bag drop to the ground and I examine the dress in the light I can see that it isthe same dress-just inside the zipper I can make out the long thread that I pulled through to the inside when I caught it on something in the hotel room. Roxie's dress. What does this mean?
Attached to the zipper by a safety pin, a note in Booth's bold handwriting: "Pick you up at 6:30, Doll. Tony."
The heaviness that had settled on me at the thought of having to go out in public tonight, tonight of all nights, and be me, lifts. Evaporates. Or rather, sublimates: the cold weight of being me-daughter, famous author, brilliant scientist, exacting boss, prickly FBI consultant-shifts directly to its gaseous state, dissipates and scatters in the thin rarified air of my apartment. I fill my lungs with that air, let my head tip back, and I breathe out and out and out. And then laugh, a breathy trill of sound from my belly. Giddy with anticipation. Trust me.
Oh this is going to be fun.
A/N: What do you think? Want to read more?