Characters: Brennan, Angela
Timeline/Spoilers: Set sometime after Yanks in the U.K.
Word Count: 200
Disclaimer: Bones and its characters belong to FOX, not me. This story is purely meant to entertain. No copyright infringement is intended.
Thanks and hugs to all who've commented on previous chapters. :)
“How do you do it?” Angela asks, setting her bowl of wonton soup on the coffee table.
Brennan watches the ribbon of steam drift toward the ceiling before turning to look at Angela. “Do what?” Her best friend speaks in riddles sometimes, and Brennan doesn’t always know to respond.
“Shut off your feelings.” She waves her arms in a vague, sweeping gesture. “Will you teach me to pretend? Sometimes I can do it, and other times, I just…I look at Jack and…” Angela trails off, shaking her head wordlessly. Her hands drop to her knees, and her shoulders slump as she glances back at Brennan.
Her brain whirls with possibilities; she wants to fix this for Angela. But in the midst of the maelstrom there’s a stillness, a quiet voice that sounds like an odd mixture of Booth and Angela. This voice tells her to reach out, not to fix, but to comfort if she can – and despite knowing the voice doesn’t really exist, she heeds it.
“I miss him, Bren,” Angela says, eyes luminous and dark.
“I know.” Swallowing her doubts, Brennan wraps her arms around Angela.
Because she’s learned that sometimes this is all a friend can do.
A/N: I know that many folks think Brennan's reaction to Angela's comments about it being awkward with Hodgins after their breakup was perfectly in-character. (I'm talking about the scene in The Crank in the Shaft -- the one where Brennan offers to fire Hodgins for Angela's benefit.) My perspective is slightly different, though. My feeling is that it would have been just as in-character for Brennan to demonstrate empathy in a slightly more traditional fashion; she did it in The Skull in the Desert, and I don't believe that she's more emotionally/socially awkward now than she was then -- especially when it comes to Angela, not Booth. Anyway, just my worthless $.02. ;)