Chapter 20: Amazing Awards And Burnt Breakfasts
Disclaimer: I keep forgetting these, anyway, by now you've more then likely guessed that I am not Hart Hanson - if I was, Angela and Hodgins would have hundreds of sweet, arty, bug-loving babies and Booth and Brennan would get that house with the huge plasma and go fishing at 5am. Oh, and Zack wouldn't be a killer, he'd be the creator of the most successful helper-robots and would still have two fully functioning hands…-wink- seen as none of this has happened (yet hopefully) you can conclude that I do not own Bones…shame really…
A/N: It's official, you reviewers are truly amazing people. I bow down and hail you!
A loud thumping sound omitted throughout the apartment of Dr. Temperance Brennan, affectively startling her awake.
Her soft, blue eyes peeked open slightly as she heard her bedroom door creak.
Her senses heightened and her hand instantly flew to the baseball bat that lay beside her bed.
She clasped her fist tightly around it and prepared to strike as she felt someone approach her bed.
Suddenly she heard an angry tone come from the hallway.
"Parker no! That's Bones' room!"
She turned and looked down and saw a mass of golden curls at the foot of her bed.
"Good morning Parker", she smiled, her tense shoulders relaxed as she sat up and rest her back against the head board.
"Morning Bones", the little boy grinned, racing to her bedside and giggling as she ruffled his hair.
"Parker what did I-oh…hey Bones", Booth smiled apologetically from the doorway.
Brennan just stared at him before Parker began to draw her attention by pulling her sleeve.
"Yes Parker?" she asked with a grin.
The little boy's face glowed as his said sweetly, "can I give you my get well hug now Dr. Bones?"
Brennan was deeply touched by his gesture and opened her arms.
The little boy raised up on his tip-toes and wrapped his arms around her neck, squeezing her tightly.
Booth watched from the doorway as his son gave his partner a hug. It made his heart swell as he saw Bones close her eyes and hug him back, a solitary tear rolling down her cheek.
Clearing his throat he said loudly, "c'mon Parker you go wash up for breakfast, Daddy wants to talk to Bones for a minute".
Brennan opened her eyes and looked straight at his son as loosened his grip and ran out of the room.
Booth was dumb-founded at what he saw behind those beautiful, blue orbs as she watched Parker leave…was it love?
"Uh sorry about that Bones. I went to pick up Parker this morning and he insisted on coming to see you, that little guy can be pretty persuasive…"
Brennan rolled her eyes, "yes, he's a lot like someone else I know."
Booth laughed and he watched Brennan shuffle and attempt to get up.
"Hey, hey Bones watch it- you're gonna hurt yourself!" he scolded, leaping forward and reaching out to help her.
"I'm fine Booth I don't need your help!" she snapped, batting his hands away from her.
Booth frowned at her looking hurt, "you're still mad at me…" he stated lowly.
When Brennan merely peered at him, he elaborated, "look Bones…I didn't mean to push you last night, I really didn't. I just, I let my emotions get the better of me that's all…I-I mean I just…I didn't mean to upset you…" he trailed off lamely, rubbing the back of his neck nervously.
Brennan stared up at her partner as he stood by her bed, his gaze refusing to meet her's.
"Your handling of my reaction to your death was irrational Booth, but understandable. You felt as if I should have had a more emotional reaction so I informed you that I did - at least for one night, yet I admit it was also irrational of me to get so worked up and angered when questioned on it…" she rambled.
"Meaning what exactly Bones?" he asked feeling a little lost.
Brennan's eyes met his for the first time from where she sat, "meaning, that it was irrational of you to be so offended by my compartmentalisation but it was also irrational of me to react so badly when you questioned it last night".
Well love isn't rational thought Booth.
Before he could continue however, his son bolted back into the room and stared at the two of them.
"Daddy, I'm finished washing up, can we have pancakes now?" he asked, his brown eyes shinning brightly, so much like his father's.
The two partners turned to look at the child and both their expressions softened.
"Yeah sure buddy, I'm coming out now to make some, I just gotta get Bones' crutches for her…"
Brennan was just about to protest when Parker smiled triumphantly, leaning back in the door way and pulling out two large objects, holding them out unsteadily.
"I already got them Daddy", he said excitedly, wobbling a little as he tried to hold the crutches that were taller then him.
Brennan and Booth smiled at him as Booth leaned forward, ruffling his son's hair exclaiming, "thanks Bud", and taking them from him before handing them to his partner.
Brennan took them without looking at him and all the time fixed her smile at the little boy.
"Thank you very much Parker", she laughed, standing up and making her way out of the room, not caring that she was still in his night clothes.
"Come on then, let's make some pancakes!" she continued, letting the boy walk in front of her.
Booth watched the two of them leave, heaving a deep sigh he soon followed, hoping that Bones would find it in her heart to forgive him for his behaviour the night before…
"Can I lick the spoon?"
Seeley Booth glanced down at his little boy and beamed, "sure buddy, just give me one second", before hurriedly whisking the pancake-batter.
"Pancake batter isn't healthy for a child to consume Booth", Brennan murmured out of the corner of her mouth once Parker bounced out into the leaving room and was out of ear-shot.
"Yeah well he's gonna be eating them when they're cooked, it's not like I'm gonna let him eat a whole bowl and besides it all goes down the same way anyway Bones", the agent murmured back to his partner who was watching him from where she sat at the counter in her kitchen.
Brennan rolled his eyes, "well obviously Booth. All food is consumed by the mouth, broken down mechanically by the teeth and chemically by saliva formed by the salivary glands and then swallowed where it travels down from the pharynx to the oesophagus then into the stomach where it is dissolved by hydrochloric acid and various digestive enzymes. There is no other way in which to consume it."
Booth merely gaped at her, for such a brainiac she really could render him speechless with her misunderstandings of common phrases.
"No Bones - that's not - I didn't mean…never mind…" he sighed, chuckling to himself softly.
"What's so funny?" Brennan asked, obviously irritated that her partner was laughing pointlessly.
"Forget it Bones…doesn't matter…"
Brennan felt her anger bubble to the surface, she really hated when he did that, but when she heard the soft, sweet voice of his five year old son her frustration quickly diminished.
"Dr. Bones can I have a glass of juice please?"
The anthropologist swivelled around in her chair and looked down at the little boy, an involuntary smile gracing her lips, the same one that always seemed to appear whenever she saw him.
"Sure Parker, orange okay?"
The boy nodded his head vigorously, the blonde curls bouncing around wildly as he did so.
Brennan got down off her stool with a little difficulty, annoyed with herself that she just had to sit in the most awkward piece of furniture in her entire apartment.
She was surprised that her partner didn't offer her any help, although after the way she reacted earlier she didn't blame him.
Throwing him and indignant look, she hobbled over to the fridge and grabbed the juice carton.
She took out a glass and poured some as her partner wove around her with such caution it was as if to touch her would be like setting off an atomic bomb.
Last night's conversation had unnerved them both and it seemed neither wished to breech the subject again for fear of what might be revealed.
Perhaps she was imaging things or maybe suffering from a classic side affect of pain medication but it seemed to Brennan that even the five-year-old that now had placed himself firmly at her kitchen table, noticed that there was something different about the two adults.
Rolling her eyes for thinking a five-year-old child would be able to pick up on the perverse signs of unease between two people such as awkward and fumbling body-language, the doctor hobbled over to Parker and set down the glass in from of him.
"There you go Parker," she smiled, beaming wider when he returned it warmly.
She took the seat directly opposite him and watched him intently over her coffee cup.
He had a sudden changed in demeanour, his head bent lowly and he twiddled his thumbs on his lap.
Booth, it seemed, had noticed his son's attitude and sounded concerned as he asked, "what's wrong buddy?"
Parker head snapped up to look at his father - his identical eyes gazing at him with a look of confusion and fear.
"What wrong with you and Dr. Bones? You aren't talking…are you fighting?" he asked, his tone worried and sorrowful.
Brennan felt the pang of sadness and guilt drop in the pit of her stomach as she heard the little boy's saddened words.
She snuck a glance at her partner whom she noticed was gazing at her too. As their eyes connected, they both made a silent agreement.
"No bud, we're not fighting, we're just tired that's all. We worked really hard putting bad guys away and we're just grumpy and grouchy till we have our coffee", he replied light-heartedly.
The little boy brightened up immediately and his eyes snapped to Brennan, "is that true Dr. Bones?" he asked, sounding hopeful.
Brennan remembered Booth and Sweets telling her about the importance of "bending the truth" when it came to the happiness of little children.
"Every word Parker - I'm so grumpy in the morning", she replied, with similar light-heartedness, stealing another glance at her partner who was giving her a look which clearly said 'you're not only grumpy in the morning' - which she ignored of course.
"Good…" the little boy beamed, "because Mommy says that you shouldn't fight with the people you love or you'll make them sad and I don't want you or Daddy to be sad," he finished, throwing his toothy smile back and forth between the adults who were rendered speechless.
Both were stunned by the boy's exclamation but couldn't dwell on it as they were suddenly startled out of their reveries by the sharp beep of the fire alarm.
"Daddy", Parker groaned pointing at the stove, that was now omitting large amounts of thick, black smoke, "you burnt the pancakes!"
Standing at the doorway, the three people halted abruptly and exchanged glances.
"Daddy do we have to go?" whined the blonde-haired little boy, tugging on his father's hand.
Booth looked down at his son who was giving him his best impression of a kicked puppy.
"Yes Parker we have to go, Bones isn't well and needs her rest…" he said with a tone of finality, reaching up to the coat-rack and grabbing his and his son's coats.
Parker then turned to the woman who was watching them intently.
"I'm glad you're okay Dr. Bones…" he smiled, startling the anthropologist as he swooped forward and hugged her tightly, pressing his ear to her stomach.
Brennan was taken aback at the child's affection for a moment, but balancing herself on her crutches she managed to run her hand through his hair affectionately.
"Thank you Parker, come back and visit me soon won't you?" she asked tenderly as the little boy raised his head to look up at her.
His chocolate-brown eyes shone brightly - Brennan's breath caught as she stared into the eyes which she was so familiar with, "yep Dr. Bones, I'll come visit real soon!"
Booth watched the exchange and felt his heart tingle once more at the sight of his partner and son interacting so well.
He smirked as Parker stood back from Brennan and starting pulling on his coat with his father's help.
When he was finished, Booth reached out and opened the door, ushering his son gently into the hallway and stepping out after him and turning to look at his partner.
"Thanks for the bed and breakfast Bones", he mumbled softly, looking a tad nervous as she continued to stare at him.
"Technically Booth you made your own breakfast, so really it was just 'bed' " she replied matter-of-factly but a small grin broke out on her beautiful face.
Seeley was grateful for small miracles, perhaps they could just put last night's little escapade behind them after all.
"Well, thanks anyway, hey - keep your cell near okay? I'm ringing to check in every half-hour", he said, his charm-smile returning.
Brennan returned his grin and nodded her head, knowing it was utterly futile to argue, "okay, I will…"
Parker waved frantically as they began to walk towards the elevators, "bye Bones!" he called loudly.
Brennan smiled at him and waved back.
Just as the doors slid open, Booth turned back to his partner and looked at her.
The blue eyes caught brown like never before. Brennan couldn't put a name on how her partner looked at her, all she knew is that it knocked the oxygen from her lungs.
"Bye Bones…" he mumbled softly, his chocolate-eyes boring into her's.
Brennan blinked, her breath returning and the trance was broken. Booth turned and stepped into the elevator, his eyes gazing at her once more before the doors slid shut.
Temperance still stood, mouth hung open - quite comically.
What was it with the way he looked at her that always got her so…mesmerised?
Shaking her unwanted thoughts from her mind, Temperance rolled her eyes and stepped back into her living room and shut the door behind her - locking it securely.
Sighing, she shoved her right hand in her pocket and clutched the silver medal - Booth's St. Christopher medal.
She never did think to return it to him, and when she remembered she still hung onto it.
It was an utter mystery to her as to why she would hold on to a religious artefact such as that when she held no faith in the religion's existence whatsoever.
Shaking her head vigorously, she decided that she would return it to him - completely ignoring the fact that for some reason it had brought her immense comfort in the lonely, solitary nights in the hospital. She had clutched it in her palm, almost unwillingly, holding it near her heart ever since he left it with her.
Releasing it tentively, she made her way slowly into the kitchen.
Now what was she going to do?
A smirk graced the anthropologist's face as she suddenly got an idea.
Now all she needed was some cheese…
Seeley Booth slid the key into his apartment door and held it open for his son to bolt through.
Immediately, Parker raced towards his bedroom to get some necessary supplies for the day.
Booth shook his head and chucked as Parker bounced away down the hall.
Closing the door, he took a look at the mail that he left on his coffee table that morning.
"Bill…bill…bill", he murmured, getting more and more nervous as his gas, electricity and rent notices kept popping up. It wasn't until a formal, crisp, white envelop was revealed, did he stop flicking quickly.
His fingers glided along the soft envelop, a feeling of despair rising within him.
It looked terribly like the notes Harlan had left for him - if not a little larger.
Biting his lip, he tore open the envelop and held out the white paper, his eyes darting through the lines of writing.
Dear Special Agent Seeley Booth,
It is my pleasure to inform you that due to your heroic and impressive actions over the course of your career as an FBI Agent, the J. Edgar Hoover society and field-operatives alike in collaboration with the Jeffersonian Institute have decided to hold an award ceremony in your honor. On the night of the October 9th you will be presented with your long over-due achievement award with like refreshments and social entertainment.
I would like to take this time to personally congratulate you Agent Booth, you truly are the perfect example of everything in which an agent strives to be.
Deputy Director of the FBI
Booth let out a low whistle once he finished reading. This had definitely come as a major shock, one of which he felt both pleasantly surprised with and utterly anxious about.
It was odd, receiving mail from the men that took over from Kirby. He didn't ever remember meeting the man.
Attached to the letter, there was another piece of paper.
His eyes bulging with anticipation - he withdrew it.
SPECIAL AGENT SEELEY BOOTH AND GUEST ARE CORRIGIBLY INVITED TO ATTEND THE AWARD CEREMONY…
The Agent stopped reading abruptly, taking the opportunity to sink into his couch, not really understanding what was going on.
Shaking his head, Booth's eyes ran over the ticket again, drinking in all the details - his gaze lingering slightly on the words 'and guest'.
I have to bring a date? He thought, an unease coming over him.
But before he could contemplate about his situation a loud screech erupted throughout his apartment and awoke him for his reverie.
Booth's heart jumped as a million thoughts ran through his mind. Oh no, it's Kinney he has Parker!
"PARKER!" he yelled, standing up hurriedly, jumping across his couch and bolting down his corridor towards Parker's room.
Skidding to a abrupt halt, Seeley burst through his son's room door, breathing heavily.
He let out a sigh of relief when he saw the inhabitants.
There, giggling heartily away as he sat on the bed, was his son, being ferociously tickled by his Uncle Jared.
"H-Hi D-Daddy! I-I did-didn't know Unc-Uncle Jar-Jared was stay-staying in my r-room", the little boy stuttered between giggles as Jared continued his attack of tickles.
Booth took this opportunity to slump against the door-frame in order to slow down his rapid heart-beat.
"Jared man, you almost gave me a heart-attack! I thought Parker was being attacked!" he scolded, as his older brother glanced confusedly up at him.
Jared laughed softly, "sorry bro - I just couldn't resist tickling my nephew, I know how much he hates it", he replied, and as if to prove his point, began tickling his nephew more.
Booth rolled his eyes, feeling slightly calmer at the sight of them.
"Where's Mom and Dad?" the agent asked as he watched his brother and son wrestle playfully.
Once Parker had calmed down, Jared swung his legs over the side of the bed and sat up beside him.
"They're gone to the store, Mom was saying something about you only having bachelor food and that if she was going to make dinner she'd need something decent", his older-brother grinned.
Parker looked ecstatic, "Grandma and Grandpa are here?" he asked excitedly, bouncing up and down on the bed.
Jared nodded and ruffled his hair, "yep - and Grandma told me she can't wait to see how big you've gotten!"
Seeley watched the interaction slightly, his mind still absorbed with the letter he just received.
Suddenly, he was broken out of his thoughts by the loud beep of his cell phone.
Withdrawing it quickly, he smiled as he saw the name pop up on the screen, 'BONES'.
"Hey Bones", he smiled, ignoring the looks of his son and brother.
"Hey Booth - how did you know it was me?" his partner asked, in a small, bewildered tone.
Booth rolled his eyes, "it's a grand invention called Caller-ID Bones, ya heard of it?"
Brennan laughed gently at herself. "Of course."
A beat passed between them, where Jared threw a knowing glance at his brother - Seeley pointed glared at him.
"So what's up?" he asked lightly, stepping out of the room and away from prying eyes and ease dropping ears.
He heard his partner take a deep breath.
"Um…I-I was just wondering if you and Parker wanted to come over for dinner at my place tonight", she said hurriedly, sounding slightly nervous.
Booth's heart panged as he heard her. She sounded adorable, he hated to let her down…
"Oh sorry Bones, my Mom is making dinner at my place tonight, because you know they don't get to see Parker a lot and yeah…" he trailed off, feeling awkward.
Brennan immediately felt the red-blood cells rush to the surface of her cheeks.
"Oh that's fine, you want to spend time with your family, it-it was just an idea really…anyway I gotta go-"
As he listened to her rambling, an idea suddenly struck the agent.
"Wait Bones! Don't hang up! I was just thinking, you know, if you wanted to…maybe you could come over and join us?"
Oh god, you sound like a love-sick teenager! he groaned in his mind.
Well you are a love-sick teenager, minus the teenage part, came the smug reply of none other then the Angela impersonator.
Brennan mumbled nervously, "I wouldn't want to…impose on the social interactions between you and your family Booth…if I was to penetrate the comforting bonds between…"
Booth stopped listening to his partner's mumbo jumbo anthropologic jargon and just settled to listening to the soft, comforting tone of her voice.
When she took a breath he took his chance and interrupted, "quit the squint-speak Bones and tell me you'll come tonight…my parents want to meet my famous partner", he finished, smirking widely.
Brennan hesitated. It seemed awfully intimate to have dinner with her partner's parents.
Wasn't that something a couple did?
Rolling her eyes, Brennan knew she it was irrational not to have dinner with Booth's family. He was her partner after all - and it wasn't like it would be just them and his parents, Parker and Jared would be there too…
"C'mon Bones…Parker really wants you to come", Booth mumbled, feeling a little guilty that his son wasn't even in the same room and wasn't aware what he was talking about. He knew that the little boy would still be over-joyed when he heard though.
Brennan sighed. He got her. At the mention of that little boy, she knew she would agree.
Booth knew it too.
"Fine, I'll come. What time do you want me there?" she asked lightly, already feeling the nervousness set in.
Booth grinned from ear-to-ear when he heard her reply, but he tried to keep the impending happiness out of his tone.
"Uh, around seven," he said, hoping he said it off-handedly.
"Okay then, I'll see you at seven, bye", Brennan responded, sounding slightly as if she were forcing her tone.
"Okay, seven", Booth replied softly before closing his phone with a snap.
Looking up, he became face to face with a set of familiar, shinning eyes.
"Who was that Seeley?" asked Booth's mother, who happened to frighten the life out of him.
"Geez! Mom, don't do that! You almost gave me a heart-attack!" Booth yelled dramatically, holding his palm over his heart.
It was a gift of his mother's, the ability to sneak up on someone, as silent as anything.
Her son inherited it. It came in very handy when Seeley was a sniper.
His mother, a short, plump woman, with rosy cheeks, glared up at him, hands on hips.
"Seeley, don't change the subject! Now, who was that?" she demanded, in her eerily-soft tone.
Seeley sighed, defeated.
"My partner," he mumbled, rubbing his neck nervously.
His mother's face, suddenly burst into a large grin.
"I hope you remembered your manners and invited her to dinner, after all she's been through, she deserves a good meal…" she replied, already walking briskly and beginning to set things up, not waiting for his response.
"If not, call her now Seeley," she order before rolling up her sleeves and started work, "I really have to meet this woman you care so much about", she added softly, her knowing tone escaping.
Booth bit his lip nervously as he heard what his mother just said.
What had he gotten himself into now?
A/N: Sorry to leave it there, but like before it was getting too long so I cut it. The next instalment should be up in a few days. COMING UP - Dinner with the parents (insuring awkwardness all round), Booth pops the question - although it's not the one you're thinking about, and Parker, well, he gets up to a lot of mischief, to the dismay of Booth and Bones! x