DISCLAIMER: Bones and its characters are the property of FOX. No infringement intended.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
SPOILERS: Season 4 Premiere (Yanks in the UK).

A Breath of One's Own
By Babydykecate


Angela still had the key to Temperance's apartment. She finds herself smiling despite her general gloominess. To Temperance, giving a key to someone means something different than it does to the rest of the world. For most people, it's an important step in a relationship. A key from Temperance means she doesn't want to worry about being home to unlock the door for you.

Angela remembers the day Temperance gave her the key (though maybe it would be best if she could forget the meaningless events they shared). It was a Sunday morning in January. Angela was drinking coffee, waiting for the caffeine to take affect. She looked up in surprise at Temperance when she felt the cold steel pressed into her hand. Temperance didn't give her a chance to voice her confusion.

"It's a key to my apartment," Temperance said bluntly.

"I can see that…" She replied.

"It would be useful for you to have one."

Angela could tell that Temperance wasn't in the mood to discuss the symbolism of giving someone your key. To Temperance, a key was just a key- just a means of opening a door. Angela took the key, giving her a soft smile. Temperance just went back to her morning rituals.

Angela slides the key into the lock, feeling the familiar weight of the door as she pushes it open. The apartment looks almost exactly the same as the last time she was here, right before she started dating Hodgins seriously. The apartment is quiet. Angela misses the sound of Temperance moving around the apartment, her keen voice filling every room with life.

For a moment, Angela considers calling Temperance's phone just to listen to her voice on the voicemail and then hang up. But she knows that would be foolish.

Instead, she opens the hall closet to find Temperance's favorite sweater. She puts it on, Temperance's scent and all the memories that come with it filling her mind.

She finds the wooden elephant from India that she gave Temperance proudly displayed amidst ancient artifacts. She has matching one in her own apartment.

She smiles as she thinks that somewhere in this sea of books is a drawing tucked away. It was a drawing of Temperance asleep. She was naked; the sheets tightly swirled around her. She'd looked so peaceful and beautiful that Angela couldn't help but sketch her. Temperance had blushed furiously when she first saw the sketch. Angela worried she might tear up the sketch- at least until she saw her eyes. The moment she looked in Temperance's eyes, she knew Temperance treasured the drawing. So now it was carefully hidden in a book (doubtlessly one of Temperance's favorites). It was a secret that was theirs alone.

Angela goes to find herself a glass of wine that can help her doze off until Temperance returns from England.

She's soon curled up in bed with her glass of wine on the side table. She's trying to keep her thoughts off Hodgins and the break up, but it's rather hopeless. She wants Temperance home, with her logical, rational words to calm her.

She thinks about what she said earlier today- "No one gets me. I'm nobody's."

Temperance never wanted to possess her. She didn't care if Angela kissed or slept with someone else. It was part of that "rational-to-a-fault" thing. Of the two of them, it had been Angela who had needed to prove her loyalty to Temperance (she was proud to have been held in contempt to protect her best friend).

Temperance had always left her room to breath. She didn't need Angela to sleep over regularly, or even go on dates. If Angela ever needed her though- she was there in heartbeat.

The stress of the day finally starts to affect Angela, and soon she's fighting to keep her eyes open. She pulls Temperance's pillow into her arms and allows herself to relax into sleep.

Angela wakes up to a kiss on her forehead and Temperance's perfume.

"You're home," she murmurs, only having the energy to open her eyes partially.

"Yep," Temperance says cheerfully as she slides into bed with Angela.

It's silent for a few minutes, and Angela wonders if perhaps the jet lag has already knocked Temperance out.

Then she feels Temperance's arms wrap around her.

"I'm sorry about Hodgins, Ange," Temperance says softly.

Angela just nods and snuggles into Temperance's arms.

The End

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