Character(s): Camille Saroyan, Angela Montenegro, Temperance Brennan
Prompt: Sometimes it's just nice to kick back and be girls
Word Count: 1432
Author's Notes: Thanks to tinylegacies for betaing. Title from the song 'Pennies from Heaven," performed by many people, though I was thinking of the Billie Holiday version.
Summary: In which Cam is in need of a drink. "So rather than having a girl talk, we're talking about girl talk?"
Cam stepped out of her office, looking warily around to see what kind of havoc her employees had gotten into while she was stuck in a farce of a budget meeting. Lord save her from academic infighting over dwindling funds. She glanced at the clock. It was 6 p.m., which meant she had been stuck in a stuffy conference room for almost as much time as it felt like. The Jeffersonian had brought in an outside expert to help clean up the budget, a slimy man who had almost been attractive until you encountered his personality.
Cam considered turning around and just leaving, but couldn't keep herself from checking on her labs one last time, if only to remind herself that she actually liked her job, even if the the financial crisis was ensuring that budget meetings were going to be occurring more and more frequently. Just one check around the place before heading out.
She strode into the lab where Brennan and Clark were peering at the dessicated husk of what was once, extremely long ago Cam hoped, was once a person. "I don't see Booth around. Is it possible that this is actual work for the Jeffersonian?" Cam's voice was a bit too stringent even to her own ears. Maybe the warring academics had rubbed off on her over the long hours she had been stuck in that room.
Luckily, her words had been aimed at Brennan, who God bless her, wasn't the best at decoding social cues, and Clark, who merely raised an eyebrow and continued working rather than break the decorum of the lab.
Brennan lifted her head up from her work and opened her mouth. All she got out was "Yes, we are looking at the remains found in -" before Cam decided to cut her off.
"Great, Dr. Brennan, I'll leave you to it then." The interruption was rude enough for even Brennan to see it, but at this point Cam had already decided her duty was done for the night, for the week even, for all it was only Thursday.
"Ooh, snippy, I think I like it." Angela stepped into the room, a burst of color amid the sterile whites. Cam tried to put a smile on her face, though from the look on Angela's she hadn't quite succeeded.
"Sorry, budget meetings." She threw out this explanation without any exposition, because the holy terror that were budget meetings should be enough to explain away any number of sins, including a bit of abruptness.
She was gratified to see Angela scrunch up her face into a grimace, while Clark gave her a commiserating half smile. Dr. Brennan still looked a bit peeved about the earlier interruption, but seemed content to continue with her examination of the corpse on her table.
Finding these reactions suitable enough, Cam pivoted on her heel and headed towards the door. Angela stopped her, laying a hand on her arm. "I actually was coming in here to invite Brennan out for drinks. This awesome little tapas bar is having a ladies night, and their bartender is both hot and talented with a shaker. Right now, I think you could use a drink."
"I don't think I am fit company for anyone tonight," Cam smiled at Angela, then turned to the other two. "I know the remains of whomever are fascinating, but remember to go home at some point before morning."
Her rather awkward attempts at conversation decided her, no more talking. She would just glance about the lab to make sure nothing, and no one, had blown up. Unfortunately, her quick glance happened to include Hodgins' lab.
The glass walls allowed a very clear view of the remains of what must have been a very impressive explosion. There was a viscous substance splattered across the walls. Cam walked towards it trying to divine what the hell had happened while she was stuck in the budget meeting. As she got closer she noticed that the way the splatters dotted the glass was almost pretty. She tilted her head and squinted. The bit in the corner almost looked like the Statue of Liberty.
She heard someone step up behind her, but relaxed when she saw it was Angela, who had apparently followed her out of Brennan's lab. She joined Cam in staring at the unintentional art.
"I am thinking that blob in the corner," Angela nodded towards a particularly intricate swirl, "is an almost perfect likeness of the hitchhiker I picked up the day I got my license."
Cam decided to ignore the implications of that sentence and switched the angle of her head tilt to match Angela's and stared at the blob she had pointed out. "Not seeing it."
"Really?" Angela was peering over at the blob again, and nodded. "Well, I guess the figure is a bit abstract. But it actually is sort of gorgeous in a chaotic way." She was glancing about, probably searching for something to draw with.
Cam rolled her head to work out the knot that developed and tried to decide whether or not to go and interrogate Hodgins to see whether the experiment had actually had any bearing on, well anything. But when she walked a little closer and got a whiff of the splattered substance, she decided it was probably in her best interest to practice selective blindness about this particular unauthorized experimentation.
But because it was that kind of day, when she took that step her heel, which apparently had been placed in a pool of that unknown smelly substance, lost traction. After falling in a puddle of it Cam was no closer to identifying it, but was very very certain of its ripeness. Pulling herself up, she looked over at Angela, and said, "You know what, I think I really do need that drink."
An hour later, freshened up and with the prospect of alcohol ahead of her, Cam was feeling a little bit better. Angela had been right. The bartender was definitely easy on the eyes. She gave him a smile as she picked up her drink and looked around for a minute before spotting Brennan, who was looking quizzically at a group of women seated at a table near her.
Cam took a long sip of her drink before raising an eyebrow at Angela. "Brennan and I were just discussing the anthropological reasons why ladies night is an outdated institution and why we should be paying full price for our drinks."
"I for one am all in favor of indulging in half priced drinks on a girls' night out." Angela nodded decisively.
Brennan turned her attention away from the women she had been studying and rejoined their conversation. "I don't think any of us can be classified as girls."
"It's just an expression sweetie. It isn't about age, it is about being here, independent of any men."
"But those women are actively seeking out the attention of men, at least I would assume so from the rather impressive display of breasts."
Cam finished her drink, the alcohol making her feel almost alive enough to speak in words of more than one syllable. "So rather than having a girl talk, we're talking about girl talk?" She nudged Brennan's untouched drink closer to her and smiled.
Brennan nodded before taking a sip of her drink. "I suppose that is an accurate summation. However, I would not be opposed to actually indulging in 'girl talk.'" Cam could actually hear the air quotes around the phrase.
She laughed. She was feeling a bit more relaxed, and the waitress was headed towards their table with tapas and another drink. "Okay Brennan, let's hear your girl talk."
The tedium of the day was slipping away from her, the cute bartender kept glancing her way, and Brennan wanted girl talk. Maybe the day hadn't been a waste after all.