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Negotiation (Double Drabble #35)
Booth Serious
Title: Negotiation (Double Drabble #35)
Characters:  Booth, Brennan
Series:  All That Lies Between Us
Rating: PG
Spoilers: None
Timeline:  Future
Prompt Table:  Romance
Written for:  drabble123
Prompt: #19 (Surprise)
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.

Click here for fic index.
Click here to read the other drabbles in this series.

Please note that this is a companion to Stalemate (Chapter 17).  This won't make much sense if you don't read that first.

As Booth gets ready for bed, he brushes his teeth and tries not to see the pieces of her that are scattered around his place--like the mousse sitting next to his gel. 

Though the sheets are icy when he climbs into bed, he forces his eyes closed.  He sleeps for only a few minutes at a time, and that feels worse than not sleeping at all.

When a shadow melts out of the blackness, he doesn't reach for his gun.  Three breaths later, the bed dips.  He remains still; it's her move. 

The silence nearly breaks under the weight of their words.

"I don't want to hurt you--" she finally says.

"Too late."

"--But I can't give you up either."

The words fill him with hollow satisfaction.  Why should he be the only one to want what he can't have?

"What do you want, Bones?" he asks, his voice unrecognizable.

"You."  Her answer surprises him.

"What if you can't have that?"

"Is that the case?"

Though not doing so still might cost him everything, he isn't ready to call her bluff yet.  "No."

She exhales.  "I'm...sorry."

Nothing's resolved, but he believes her.  "I know. Come here."  He opens his arms.

Author's Note: Does this seem like a copout, or can you feel the ambiguity?

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I agree that they wouldn't have a smooth time of it, and there would have to be compromise between them in order for a romantic relationship to work. People change each other, too, after being together a while--sometimes in ways neither party could ever have predicted... But I think you're right that she wouldn't be happy with "the conventional life of husband and wife, kids, the dog and the pitched fence." Which doesn't mean that she couldn't be happy with something slightly different than what she believes she wants right now.

One thing I can't see is Booth and Brennan ever getting married. I can see that it might be a possibility, like you said, people change, and it's obvious that very slowly Brennan is re-evaluation her ideas on the world and relationships, but I can't see her changing her mind to the extent that she would want some huge lavish wedding. So maybe it's the wedding I can't see happening, more so than the marriage itself.

I can't see her wanting a big wedding either. Marriage possibly--if the author sets up the evolution right. But I wouldn't trust most people to write it in a believable way. She can't just love Booth and wake up one morning thinking, "I want to get married."

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