TBB's Chapter 3

Continued...

Back in ER Exam Room:

Note: Director Cullen is still Booth's direct boss in my story because I miss his father-like character. I wish they would bring him back to the show for good!

Brennan has been watching the intense amount of pain that was etched in her handsome Partner's face - and seeing it worsen whenever he moved, or even took a deeper breath than his injured spine would allow.

"Dr. Patell? Brennan inquired, "Don't you have something you can give him for

the pain? I mean look at him, it's obvious how much he is suffering right now, and if you will need him to be still for tests, I would think it would be easier to do that if he isn't in so much agony."

Aaahhh that was the Bones he knew and loved thought Booth, always taking charge and telling everyone what they should be doing. It must come from her background in teaching Grad students like she does, to where now her telling people what they should be doing, was second nature.

Booth didn't like the affect that some drugs seemed to have on him, but at this point – and in this kind of pain - he could probably be easily persuaded to take just about ANYTHING!

"Yes Dr. Brennan, of course." the older, pleasant looking Doctor replied. He then asked his assisting Nurse, whom had entered the room a few minute ago, to get the Agent a high does of Vicodin along with another medication called Soma, which was a potent Muscle Relaxant.

"Then," the Dr. continued, "Agent Booth I can also give you a local injection near where the worst of your pain is. Now this injection will not enter into the disk space but that is a type of scheduled injection that we can discuss if we determine that you have any kind of herniation or pinched nerves. These are called "Epidural Injections" however, they are not administered in the same fashion that say, a woman in labor, would be given."

"Some people find the injections can provide them with months of complete pain relief. But for now, let's get you over to our Imaging department where I am scheduling you for a series of lumbar X-rays and also, an MRI of the Thoracic and Lumbar Spine, including the Sacrum and the Sacroiliac Joints."

Booth simply stared at the Doctor for a minute with his mouth slightly ajar, "Yeah. . .uh, Doc. . . now uh, how about again in ENGLISH this time?!" he said - slightly frustrated over these arrogant Medical people that he swears, just want to show off by using medical terms that no lay person could comprehend 100%!

"Oh, my apologies," the Doctor replied, "Basically just tests that will provide me with films of your spine including all vertebrae and disks, starting from the middle of your back - right about here. . ." he said as he pointed to the area between Booth's shoulder blades, ". . .to well, basically all the way down your spine to the very bottom - which is what we refer to as the 'Sacrum'."

"Okay, is that more clear? He asked the Agent. "Yes Doc, thank you." Booth replied, "Well, let's get this over with!." Booth finished.

Dr. Patell, nodded in agreement, wrote up the request for exactly what tests he needed Imaging to run and handed them off to the Medical Assistant. She then went out to her station to call Imaging and inform them of the ordered tests.

"Okay so, Agent Booth," the Dr. began but then added, "and Dr. Brennan, our Radiology Department has been extraordinarily busy today, booked with back to back MRI's & such. We will try to get you accommodated as soon as possible but you will probably have an estimated 30 minute wait until one of the MRI machines is available for you. But they may be able to get your X-Rays done during that waiting period since we have more X-ray machines."

"I won't be able to get the films and subsequent reports back from Radiology until later this morning or early afternoon. So I will call you at that time Agent Booth and let you know your results"

"However, I am still going to inform you of a tentative treatment plan and some necessary restrictions that I need you to follow, based on what I suspect is causing your pain."

Brennan looked over at her Partner while the Doctor was still in the middle of his lengthy speech. It was becoming very apparent that the meds Booth had taken approx 15 minutes ago, were starting to take affect. His shoulders were slumped down slightly as if he didn't have the energy to even hold himself up all the way. His eyes were slightly glazing over as he just sat there on the exam table, staring at the Physician with a wide-eyed & completely blank expression on his face. Not only was he not moving or speaking, he wasn't even blinking!

As Brennan observed this, the corners of her mouth started to turn up in utter amusement over seeing Booth like that. She struggled not to laugh out loud as she watched him and realized that, not only did he actalmost childlike when he was hurting, but in this medicated state he was in, he now also looked the part as well!

She finally had to look back towards the Doctor as her resolve to keep from laughing at Booth's drugged appearance was faltering.

"So I want you to keep this belt on at all times," Brennan heard as she tuned back in to the sound of the Dr.'s voice, "I will show you how to put it on so that it's in the most supportive position. This will help take some of the pressure off your disks since my suspicion is, that you have one or more disk herniations. Although your reflexes and symptoms do not indicate a pinching of the S1 Nerve Root – which is a good thing."

"Yeah, well thanks Dr. Patell – I'm sure that is all fine and dandy but uhhh. . . I gotta tell ya, I ain't wearin' no...girdle!" Booth said, rejecting the notion back to the Doc.

"Booth, that is NOT a girdle," Brennan corrected him, "In fact, extensive research has been done on these Sacral Support belts and the results show them to be ver-ry effective."

"Yeah Bones, thaaat's great. So what you're telling me is, that it's an effective girdle." was Booth's sarcastic response as he rolled his eyes.

"Look people, I'm a Special Agent for the United Stated Federal Bureau of Investigation, and WE - DON'T - WEAR - girdle's!" Booth stated firmly.

"Okay Booth, how about a compromise? Okay? Just as a favor to me? Your Partner?" Brennan started to ask him, "Let's say that you just wear it then, only in the privacy of your own home? Okay? Could you do that for me? Then NO one needs to know except you...and me."

As Booth glared at Bones, out of the corner of his eye, like it was some kind of trick that she was trying to play on him, as he was getting more and more goofy, the more his pain medication took effect. He then responded after considering her suggestion, "Ohhh, I get it, a Paart-ner thing? Just like when I asked you to let your Da-ad work at the Jeffersonian - so he could enhance Parker's education?

"Yes Booth," Brennan replied, pleased with herself, "Yes, ex-aaactly like thaat - Quid Pro Quo, remember?" she added.

"Yeeaah. . ." replied her rather doped up Detective, "I know what thaat meeaanns!" He said now pleased with his own self!

"Okay then let's get moving and get you to Radiology." Brennan told him before he could change his mind about this little "belt" agreement. "Dr. Patell, thank you. I appreciate all of your help and was there anything else you need to instruct him so I can make sure he complies?"

"It was my pleasure Dr. Brennan, Agent Booth. But, yes I will continue. I will be giving you some prescriptions for more pain pills and muscle relaxants, and I will also write a prescription for a few sessions of Physical Therapy - which is also quite helpful in relieving the pain and strengthening the Paraspinal Muscles that support the Spine."

"And Agent Booth, I am afraid I am going to have to put you on strict bed rest for the duration of the week. Your job is too active and would put you at risk of a possible rupture to one or more of your disks. But if I discover when I get your results back, that your disks are not in immediate danger of rupture, then I will release you for at least desk duty for the week."

"Dr. Brennan," the Dr. added, "I trust that you will make sure your Partner obeys my instructions?"

"Yes of course." was her response.

"Now Booth, I will be staying here until you are done with your tests so that I can give you a ride back home, okay?" Brennan stated as she was gathering the prescriptions, the belt and handing Booth his shirt.

"Oohh nooo Bones, I'm sorry but you are NOT taking me home because WE-eee have a CASE!" Booth answered, "I will be just fiiine once these pills kick in and do their thing! We have a new dead body to go investigate!" he said - still grimacing now and then as he spoke.

"BOOTH!" Brennan reprimanded, "I swear - were you even listening to what we were just discussing?!" YOU are not going ANY where, but home to bed!" she continued, "I have already taken the liberty to contact Director Cullen and I told him you were injured and that I think that Agent Perotta would be a suitable – albeit temporary - replacement, just for this case of course."

"WHAT?!" Booth started to shout as the ligaments in his back spasmed again in angry rebellion, "Now Bones - why would you go and do something like that without telling me first – hmmm? Can you tell me that?!"

"After all, weren't YOU the one who said when we were skating, that you didn't want things to change between us?"

"Yeeaah. . ." he continued, "you did! And. . . also that you didn't want Perotta to be one of the factors involved in splitting us up - . . uh, as Partners I mean . . ." Hmm-mm?" He said, waggling his eyebrows at her.

"Yeah," he proceeded, "I think you did!" he said with a grin.

"Yeah okay Booth," Brennan retaliated, "BUT, you are NOT working today and that's final! I will only agree to wait until the Dr. calls you with your test results and then we can discuss your. . . options - but NOT before!"

Booth is then taken via wheelchair, to Radiology for his tests. The duo is finally headed back to Booth's place after being at the Hospital for approx 2 ½ hours.

After Brennan helped him get back to upstairs apartment, which proved to be quite challenging with Booth's balance having been greatly affected by the narcotics he was forced to take for the pain. He was still suffering, but at least the pain was at a more tolerable level than it was before the pills!

Brennan finally eased him back down on the couch after he refused to let her put him in his bed. He had insisted that if he was going to be forced to be a prisoner of his own home (Mr. Over Dramatic!), that the TV in his living room was waaay better than the one in his bedroom – after all, it had the 'Picture within a Picture' feature so he could watch Hockey AND Basketball at the same time.

As Brennan came from Booth's kitchen holding a pitcher of water for his coffee table, so he wouldn't have to get up as much. She poured him a glass, then grabbed one of the Vicodin tablets that she had gotten filled at the Hospital Pharmacy while Booth was getting the MRI.

"Booth here, the Dr. said you need to take another one of these as soon as we got you home." she said as she put her hand behind his head to help him take the medication. "And then I think you should take a nap and get some rest. That trip to the hospital and tests and such seems to have taken a lot out of you."

"Okaay Bo-onzz, he said groggily, still feeling the effects from his previous dose, "But ya know something?" he asked.

"Yes, I know a lot of things Booth. Can you be a little more specific? she said.

"Ya know, these pillls make me feel alll weirrrd." Booth replied.

"Weird how?" Brennan asked – she had to admit it, it was kind of fun for her to see her partner in such a vulnerable state!

"Aaahh - I dunno," Booth replied, "But I'll tell you this, my couch has never felt this. . . friendly before." He said as he closed his eyes for a minute, as if enjoying his - couch. A smile of satisfaction growing across his face.

Brennan could only look at his odd statement in a logical fashion since - she wasn't sure else what to make of it.

And her logical mind decided that since narcotic pain medication can make some people feel overly in tune with their senses. Like when they were under quarantine during Christmas, and Booth, being the only one who reacted to the medication they were given, was unusually fascinated by the little tiny lights on the ceiling.

But it seems that this time, it wasn't his visual senses that were being affected, but rather physical – his sense of touch - that was being affected. Therefore, anything he came in contact with, such as the soft leather couch, felt even better. Softer and more comforting than he would have ever noticed before in a non-medicated state.

"Yeah Booth, I think your couch is ve-ery friendly." she finally said in response rolling her eyes in amusement, unsure of how to even respond to such an odd statement! "Now just rest, I will leave you alone with your, couch, and the rest of your "friendly" furniture, knowing you will be in good hands while I go to work."

"I will call you shortly to see if you got your test results. Or you can call me, either way is fine. Oh, and I put your cell phone on your coffee table, next to the pitcher of water and your prescription bottles."

"Booth, call me if you need anything," she said as she opened the door to leave, I will come by later tonight to check in on you." All she received back as a response, was a tired, "Mm-hmmm, kay thankxBone-z."

She smiled at the sight of him finally starting to dose off for a while, and quietly closed to door, locking it behind her. She secretly wished he had 8 more locks on his door, ever since his kidnapping, but she quickly forced the thought out of her head as she headed down the hall.

Poor Booth, she thought, what a rough year he was having. . . broken hand, concussion, being kidnapped and injured only 3 weeks ago, and now this.

He was one tough man to endure all of that and still maintain his sense of humor and energetic persona. Yes, he was one tough man.

TBC Yes? or TBC No?

Realistically I should end this story here since it's supposed to be a missing scene. But I am willing to re-consider depending on what you all want me to do. I can probably be easily persuaded to keep going, I am sure I can think of "something" to keep B & B "busy" ~ wink wink ~.