“Holy shit! Talk about a stage malfunction. Do you see that?” Hodgins exclaims, tapping Booth on the shoulder and pointing toward the stage. He’s laughing his ass off. “Someone’s head’s gonna roll for that one!”
Booth gets very still. He’s not sure if his head is draining of all its blood, or filling and turning him beet red. In his mind, a lock clicks, a wheel turns, a door flies open. Booth has figured it out.
“The Who-hah Monologues’, Dude! Holy f*ck! How embarrassing!” Hodgins is still not getting it. “I’ll bet the stage hands are freaking …”
Hodgins looks toward the back. The lights are dimming and he can barely see. Booth has grown preternaturally quiet.
“Maybe they don’t realize it, Jesus! Dude!”
Booth’s arm shoots across Hodgins. He looks sideways at his colleague and friend.
“We are so f*cked,” he says, his heartbeat pounding in his ears. Hodgins looks at him strangely.
“What?” He blurts, caught off guard, slightly irritated. He slowly turns toward the stage again.
Walking onto the stage are three more beautiful women. Each dressed elegantly and perfectly coiffed. Each rests her rear on a stool and slides gingerly up onto it. Each takes a microphone. In unison, all for women say: “Welcome to The Vagina Monologues.”
Both men stare at the stage with their mouths hanging open, their pulses pounding in their ears, their intestines gurgling. They look at each other at the same time as if in a synchronized dance.
oOoOoO oOoOoO oOoOoO oOoOoOo
Booth and Hodgins sit through the first twenty minutes of The Vagina Monologues holding their breath. Brennan has refused to hold Booth’s hand any longer because he was sweating all over her.
The women aren’t sure which is more satisfying, watching the show or watching their men wither into puddles of self-loathing. Their inane pride and cocksure attitudes have, once again, been used expertly against them.
“You’d think we’d know better by now,” squeeks Hodgins to Booth under his breath. Both of them have sunk in their seats, praying no one who would recognize them is in the audience.
“Hey, man, meet me in the bathroom,” chokes Hodgins toward Booth.
“What?” Booth’s eyes are glued to the woman describing how uncomfortable a dry cotton tampon is.
“Dude! Meet me in the john!”
“What are you, a little girl? I’m not meeting you in the can!”
“We gotta huddle, man. This cannot go on.” Without another word, Hodgins stands and shoots toward the closest aisle. He ducks his head and covers his face with his hand as well as he can without appearing idiotic.
After two minutes, Booth joins Hodgins in the men’s bathroom.
“Booth! What the hell have we gotten ourselves into? You better not have known anything about this!”
“Listen, I am as freaked as you are.”
“Okay, what do we do? I cannot sit through another hour and forty minutes of vajayjay! What if someone sees us?”
“Hodgins, relax, man! Pull yourself together,” rasps Booth, dragging his hand through his hair. His color has returned to normal, but he’s still rather freaked out himself.
“Okay. Let’s think,” he says, hands on hips, butt leaning up against one of the cold, wide-tiled walls. “What’s the worst that could happen? It’s not like this is going to kill us, for Christ’s sake!”
“Yeah, but I’d rather dig my own eye balls out with a syringe and a spoon than sit in the middle of all those … women … and listen to those for women on stage … talk about … their … private parts!”
“You wanna go? You wanna ditch? There are at least three bars on this block.”
“Ange would kill me. Oh, Dude!” Hodgins is anguished, splashing water up onto his face and through his short, wavy light brown hair. “She’s been looking forward to this night out for two weeks,” he chokes out. “She’s been crossing off every day on the calendar … for fourteen days, man!”
“Jesus Christ, get a hold of yourself! What really is the big deal, huh? Lets just go back in there and sit down. Close your eyes and imagine you’re at a game or asleep.”
“Hey, that’s brilliant! They can’t blame us for falling asleep, right? We’d still be here, right? We’d still make it to the end of the thing and win the prize,” Hodgins enthuses, energized, his mind bussing with possibilities.
“What prizes? Hodgins, I think you’ve lost it man,” blurts Booth. “Listen, I gotta stay. I promised Bones. And … it’s not so bad, really,” he almost gags on his words. “Oh, man, I can’t even pretend,” he moans as he slides his ass down the wall and ends up squatting near the floor. “But I gotta stay, Jack. I can’t go,” he whines, defeated.
“What? What are you talking about?”
“I- I gotta stay. You go. Here,” he says, digging in his back pocket. “Here’s fifty bucks. See if you can get a bottle of something the women will appreciate – something that says … ‘I’m sorry for ending up proving that I’m a little girl!'”
“Booth, Dude! What has gotten into you? You gotta go with me! Where’s your pride, man?”
“No can do. My pride is in the back pocket of the forensic anthropologist in center row D. I just can’t go.”
Hodgins slides down the wall next to Booth. “She’s got you whipped, Booth. This is a sad, sad day when Seeley Booth lets a woman make him sit through one hundred and twenty minutes of vajayjay! VAJAYJAY, MAN!”
Booth stares forward, sighing exasperatedly. Hodgins stands up.
“Wait!” He starts pacing. “What a minute! What did she promise you?” He narrows his eyes suspiciously and shakes an accusatory fist at Booth. “What did she promise you she’d give you if you make it to the end of this show?”
“Wha –What? What are you … no! Come on … Jack!”
“Give it up, brother! Give. It. Up! What the hell is she giving you?”
Booth hangs his head, draping his arms over his knees.