Temperance Brennan ended her call with the head archeologist who would be on site with her in India. This dig would be uncovering and making history all at the same time. This would be one of the biggest things she was ever a part of. This would be one of the biggest discoveries of all time and she was wanted….needed actually. She had been in talks with these people for several weeks now and today it seemed as though everything was official.
"So everything's official?" Booth asked walking in behind her as she sat at her kitchen table still staring down at her phone.
"Well, there are a few minor details that still need to be worked out but it seems as though I'm going to India."
He nodded and moved around her to sit at the table with her. "That's great Bones. I'm really happy for you."
"This is very exciting." She admitted but he could tell that there was something holding her back from feeling completely happy about this.
"Dr. Haryana says that I should plan to be there for at least six months, minimum."
"Six months? Wow." Booth quickly wiped the shock from his face and sat up quickly leaning in closer to her grabbing her hand that was placed on top of the table.
"Do you think that it could really take that long?" He asked. She gave him a sad smile and her heart broke at his ignorance.
"Booth… things like this could take years. This dig is very well funded; I don't see this being a short trip. Some people who have been asked to come are selling their homes, paying off their rent and finding places in India to live…" She moved to stand up from the table and he let her hand go as she did. He turned into the table and placed both his elbows on the top of it and held his head in his hands. It's not like she didn't want to go. He knew she wanted to go the very moment she mentioned the possibility of this happening. This was her passion, this was…Bones. There's no way he would ask her to stay for him, there's no way he would let her stay. She had mentioned something about quitting her job earlier in the week and he nearly choked on his drink when the words passed from her mouth. She had put up a good argument though telling him that it wouldn't technically be quitting, she'd be retiring and then she could just teach. But they both knew that wasn't going to happen at the end of the conversation. She needed to do this.
"Ok." He said after a few minutes of silence passed between them. "Alright. You're going to India. This is great and we're happy and things will be ok." He got up from the table and moved to where she was standing in the kitchen. He looked at her face and she refused to meet his eyes. She wasn't happy and she wasn't going to pretend to be. She would never pretend with him.
"I'm sorry Booth," she said somberly. "I feel like I'm deserting us. We've just started. It's only been ten months."
"Hey…no… Don't do that." The deepness of his voice pierced her and she was forced to look at him at that point.
"Don't talk like that, ok? No one is deserting anyone here. That's not what this is." He explained his voice hard and precise.
"But that's not how I feel." She followed her voice giving way to her emotions.
"It doesn't matter; those are temporary feelings, Bones. You out of all people should know that. Look at what does matter. The facts, right? The fact is that I'm in love with you and I always will be. Time and distance will never change that. I promise."
"I know that Booth." She said impatiently. She stepped away from him and moved towards the kitchen table again picking up her phone she began tossing it back and forth in her hands.
"Bones please stop walking away from me." He said as he turned on his heel and followed her.
"I'm trying, Booth. And usually I can force myself to feel one thing, but I'm feeling so many different emotions…I just…. I can't force myself to feel one thing like you've been doing since I mentioned this to you."
He was hurting too. He just didn't want her to know to what extent.
"Look Bones… I understand, ok?"
His words the opposite of the face he was trying so hard not to give her. She hoped that he knew just how much she loved him. How much she was going to miss him. The pain that she felt in that very second frightened her when she realized that he was probably feeling the same exact discomfort and it frustrated her that he would have to feel that because of her. She never wanted Booth to hurt. Never.
"Booth I… I just want you to know that if… we're not married so you don't have to" she exhaled a shaky breath "you shouldn't feel obligated to not find happiness." She swallowed hard. "At some point." She finished.
His brows fell lower over his dark brown eyes. "Come 'ere." They both moved towards each other and she fell into him. She didn't put her arms around him; she just simply leaned up against him while he wrapped his arms around her. One hand around her waist and one hand came up to rest on the back of her head as he held her as tight as he could without hurting her. "We're going to be together again." He mumbled into her hair. After a moment of having her against him he wrapped his fingers around each of her arms and pulled her back from him so that he could look at her face.
"Do you really think I could be with anyone else, Bones?"
She tried to smile at him through the hurt currently taking up residence in her entire being.
"What if months turn into years, Booth?"
"And if two years turn into ten years for whatever reason we'll find a way."
She knew Booth would never stray from her, deep down. But that didn't make this any less hard. That didn't make her not want to curl up into a ball somewhere in a corner and cry and cry and cry. She didn't want to leave him, this. They just started. They had just gotten to where she has always wanted to be…now she had to go. She had to leave that and she was trying desperately to find a way to stay. She considered quitting her job, but Booth and rationality quickly helped her come to her senses about that. She couldn't just quit. Too many people depended on her and Booth and her as a team. She could never be that selfish.
She turned away from him and walked back to her bedroom where her suitcase was laying open on the bottom of her bed. Booth didn't follow her right away, but about forty minutes later when she was completely packed she saw him enter her bedroom with a heavy gait, his hands pushed into the pockets of his jeans.
"Hey baby." He said as he leant up against the wall.
She walked over to him feeling a little less overwhelmed compared to an hour ago. She wrapped her arms around his neck. "Don't call me that."
"You're leaving soon I have to get them in as often as possible."
She laughed into his neck. "I suppose." She whispered.
It was at this point he moved his hands out of his pockets and up to grab her wrists that were crossed behind his neck.
"Hey." He said softly, brining her arms down from around him.
"Come with me somewhere." The look on his face told her that he wasn't exactly asking.
"Grab your purse."
She looked at him curiously for a moment before moving to the spot in her room where she kept it. He stood there without moving watching her as she did what she was asked.
"You keep your social security card in your purse?"
"Of course not." She answered looking at him with complete and utter confusion. "I'm guessing you would like me to collect that as well?"
He nodded. She walked to the opposite side of her bed and opened the bottom drawer of her nightstand and dug around for a minute before retrieving the small card and putting it into the zipper part of her purse. She put her bag over her shoulder and walked back towards him. "Booth…" she said a little tiredly, wanting some kind of explanation at this point.
"Just…have some faith in me." He said as she returned to him and he caressed the side of her face moving her hair back from her cheek. "God I'm going to miss the hell out of you." She could see it in his eyes that he was starting to lose some control of his own emotions now and she knew that she would not be able to handle that. She knew that she would have to someday, probably next week, but not now. "Let's go." She said succeeding in interrupting the heaviness of the moment.
"Yeah," Booth agreed, clearing his throat. "Let's go."
He was quiet during the short drive and so was she, on the outside anyway. On the inside her stomach was turning, her heart racing and her thoughts nearly driving her mad. It was when they pulled up to the courthouse though that she had to actually keep herself from vomiting using a breathing technique her father taught her when she was a little girl. She was the smartest person she knew and she would have been severely disappointed in herself if she hadn't figured out what was going on at some point. Booth parked and waited a minute before speaking, before even looking at her.
"Bones, I know that-
"It's ok." She interrupted, her voice coming out louder than she intended. She turned in her seat to look at him. "It's ok." She reiterated in a calmer tone.
"This is ok?" He asked, still slightly unsure.
"This is ok." She said with confidence and a genuine smile, the first in several days.
He leaned over the center console and she met him there and their mouths came gently as first but they deepened the kiss and it turned into something desperate. He kissed her like he was praising her with his mouth and she accepted his show of gratitude and kissed him back without any falter showing him through her own actions that she wanted this, him, too.
She was the one to pull away first but she kept her hands planted on either side of his face as she said "Let's go."
Tonight she would go to bed as his wife for the first time and when she returned back to him back to her life that she loved that she waited so long to have she would still be his wife. Whenever that would be.