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21 September 2007 @ 02:35 pm
In My Life [The Office; Michael/Jan]  
TITLE: In My Life
FANDOM: The Office
PAIRING: Michael/Jan, Michael/Pam friendship
SPOILERS: "Phyllis' Wedding" (but pre-episode airing)
RATING: PG
SUMMARY:


*****

"Michael, are you okay?"

Michael Scott lifted his chin from his palm, meeting the eyes of Pam Beesly, who was standing over him with her hands clasped in front of her. He wasn't okay. He was stuck at Phyllis' wedding -- what should have been a joyous occasion -- and he was depressed. His girlfriend of a couple months had refused to accompany him, purely because they hadn't officially "come out" as a couple yet to their HR department. And he hated being at weddings by himself. It reminded him of his mom's wedding when he was a kid. And that, in turn, reminded him of his stepdad getting drunk, and... well, those memories were never pleasant ones to relive on your own. That was part of the reason why he wanted Jan with him. She always provided a lovely distraction.

That, and she was his girlfriend, for crying out loud. The woman he loved (though he had yet to tell her this). He wanted her beside him, he wanted to dance with her, he wanted to admire her beauty at this lavish event thrown by Vance Refrigeration.

"I'm fine," he replied glumly to Pam. He recognized her dress as the one she'd worn to Casino Night. He'd always had a soft spot for his receptionist, had always thought she was adorable, but tonight she was downright lovely. But would he tell her this? "You look nice."

That was as much as he could manage. And apparently, that was all Pam needed to hear. She gave a radiant smile and thanked him, then sat down next to him. He was still at his assigned dinner table. Everyone else had gone out to dance or mingle. Without Jan, he wasn't much in the mingling mood. He hadn't been in the mood for much of anything lately if Jan wasn't with him.

"You've been moping all night. Are you sure you're okay?"

"Yeah, I'm fine." But he could see in Pam's face that she wasn't buying it. The woman always saw right through him. Almost as well as Jan could.

But instead of pressing the issue, she just smiled and laid her hand on the table palm-up, quirking her eyebrows in question. "Will you dance with me, Michael?"

For a moment, he contemplated her as if she may be close to losing her mind. "You want me to dance with you?"

She chuckled, "Sure!" and rose to her feet, still holding out her hand. "Come on."

So Michael obliged and led Pam out onto the dance floor just as an Elvis song started to play (Michael thought it might've been "The Wonder Of You"... if he remembered correctly). One hand settled gentlemanly on her back and the other held her hand in his as they swayed, and for a fleeting moment, Pam looked impressed. Did she expect him to be all over her?

The song wasn't a slow one, nor was it fast, so Michael kept a nice, steady tempo while leading them around the floor. "I miss Jan," he confessed after a moment.

"I kinda figured," Pam replied simply. "She couldn't come?"

"She wouldn't. Because we haven't disclosed to HR yet. She doesn't want either of us to get in trouble."

"Oh." Pam nodded slowly. Then, Michael saw her brows furrow. "I thought you disclosed to Toby after you came back from Jamaica."

Michael rolled his eyes. "Toby." The name was spat out scornfully. "That skeevy little perv just wanted all the horny details about my marathon sex vacation with Jan."

He didn't catch the TMI look Pam made, and again she replied, "Oh."

"But... we've been together for a couple months now. I'm beginning to think this is how it's always going to be. And I hate that. I hate living in secret like this." As he said all this, he was idly twirling Pam about and drawing her close again, over and over... completely missing the mixture of surprise and awe on her face.

When she was in his arms again, her laugh drew his attention. "Wow. I never would've thought you could do this so well."

Michael shrugged, as if it was no big deal. It really wasn't. "My mom taught me. Said it's a valuable skill every young man should have. She also said it'll impress the ladies." He looked down at her. "Is she right?"

Pam shrugged facially, though it was obvious she was fighting one hell of a smile. "I'd say I'm... slightly impressed."

"Ah." Then, he couldn't help it. His mood lifted a little and he smiled back. "Well good, then." He kept twirling her around the dance floor. After a moment, he added thoughtfully, "I would've liked to have impressed Jan with this skill, though. No offense."

"None taken." He felt her watching him for a moment before she spoke again. "So you really like her, huh?"

"Like her?" he balked, and blew a raspberry through his lips. He twirled Pam again and pulled her back to him. "I've been in love with her for what feels like forever. I'd marry her tomorrow if she'd let me."

"And you're sure it's not just the... wedding atmosphere?"

"Yes! Positive, why?" He looked down at her.

Pam gave another facial shrug and let her eyes wander around the reception hall. "Well, the last event we all went to... you got a little inspired by Kelly's parents, and--"

"Right." He really didn't want to relive that awful mistake. Who was he kidding, anyway, being with Carol? "I was just being an idiot then. I don't know what had gotten into me. Carol wasn't the woman for me."

"But Jan is." It was voiced as a half-statement, half-question, and for a split-second, Michael wasn't sure how to respond, even though the answer was glaringly obvious.

"Yes."

The song they'd been dancing to faded and an up-tempo one came on. They both stopped dancing, and Michael took a step back from Pam. She hung on to one of his hands, gaining his attention again.

She held his gaze. "You should tell her."

He raised his eyebrows. "That I wanna marry her? Yeah... psshh." He made a face at her. Pam was adorable, but... completely crazy sometimes. "That'll work out real well I'm sure, Pam."

She rolled her eyes. "Not that. You should tell her how you feel about her... minus the marriage stuff."

"Yeah, maybe." Michael nodded and glimpsed quick over Pam's shoulder, where Roy was standing several feet away, looking kinda nervous. He nodded toward him and Pam followed his gaze. "I think someone else might want to dance with you now."

"Okay." But she hadn't let go of his hand yet. Instead, she swung their clasped hands a little. "You sure you'll be okay, Michael?"

"Yeah." He smiled. Crazy and adorable and... kinda angelic at times; his umbrella protecting him from all that stormy emotional stuff. That was his Pam. "Thanks, Pam."

"You're welcome." Surprisingly, she stretched up and kissed his cheek, then squeezed his hand and let him go.

Michael stood in the middle of the dance floor a moment longer, pondering what Pam had said. Then, deciding he wanted to get some air, he grabbed his suit coat and headed for the door.


*****

It wasn't that bad out tonight, Michael decided as he sat on a bench behind the reception hall. He didn't even need his long coat. Was Pam really right? Should he tell Jan how he felt? She was so unpredictable now. A year ago, he would've known without a doubt that she'd bolt if he brought up any mention of his feelings. But now? Now, it was kind of a free-for-all. Especially since they'd gotten back from Jamaica and she surprised the hell out of him in his office that one night.

She told him she was attracted to him... that she wanted to be with him. He told her that she completed him (which was totally, a hundred percent true), and she didn't freak out. Not really, anyway. She kinda stared at him for a second like he was nuts. Then, she smiled like his insanity might've been kinda cute. Then, it was as if she realized that she thought his insanity was cute, so then she was wondering if she was insane. That was when she'd said, "Oh God," and gone out the door.

But she didn't bolt then, either. She still waited for him at his condo. They still had sex. He had sex with her again. He had sex with Jan. And things continued as normal. So... what would happen if he took it a step further than that Jerry Maguire line and dropped the actual L-bomb on her? What would she do, then?

Maybe she would still bolt. She didn't come tonight, after all. Sure, it was under the guise of them not having "come out" to HR yet, but... was that really all that it was? And why hadn't they? Her reluctance to disclose anything made him wonder if she was really interested in him at all. She said she wanted to be with him, so why wasn't she with him?

"Can I sit here?"

Michael's ears perked up at the voice and as he stared straight ahead, he caught sight of silvery material. Trailing his eyes upward, he saw that silvery material clinging to shapely hips, a flat stomach, and a real nice rack. Then he saw her face. "Jan." He jumped to his feet.

She looked amazing. He hoped to hell he'd still have enough speech left in him to tell her so. Her dress was strapless and was made of some sort of material Michael wouldn't have been able to describe properly if a million dollars was on the line. All he could tell was that it was shimmery, and clung to her in all the right places, reaching right to the floor. Her wrap was made of the same material, and her hair was curled, pinned back on one side.

"You look..." He was trying his damndest to make his brain work... to think up the perfect word. Unfortunately, all he could come up with was, "wow."

It seemed to work, lame as it was. Jan smiled. "I take it 'wow' is a good thing, Michael?"

"Yeah, it's good. Real good." He had to know... "What are you doing here?"

She gestured for him to sit down again, but he chivalrously had her sit down first. Then, when she was seated, he took off his suit jacket and draped it around her shoulders. She smiled at him gratefully and tugged on the lapels a little bit, seemingly snuggling into it. She was too damned fantastic. "Thank you."

"Sure." Then he sat beside her and reached for her hand, angling his body toward her to make sure she knew she had his full attention. Didn't she always, though?

"Michael, I felt bad about turning you down. I... I feel like I've been doing that a lot lately, with all these semi-quasi-work-related functions cropping up."

He shook his head. "It's understandable."

"It's not, though. We've been doing this for a few months, now--"

"But I wanted you to feel comfortable disclosing it to HR. And if you're not comfortable yet, then--"

"I disclosed to HR this morning, Michael."

His eyebrows flicked upward. "What now?"

She smiled and turned her body toward him, squeezing his hand. "I told them about us this morning. No repercussions, no reassignments, no consequences... no hesitation."

"Wow."

"A few more precautions will be taken from here on out, like when you and I have meetings, there'll have to be someone else there--"

"I don't care about that. You... you told them?"

Jan bit delicately on her lip, and Michael had to wonder how she could ever think she wasn't the most beautiful woman in the whole damn universe. "Yes."

He was so surprised and elated he barked a laugh. "Wow." He shook his head in amazement, then looked back over at her and had to ask (while grinning like such an idiot), "So what the hell have you been doing all day, then?"

She chuckled and gestured to her (hot, sexy, amazing) dress. "Doing this," she replied.

"Well, you look just..." Where the hell was that word he was looking for?

Jan grinned, offering, "'Wow'?"

He chuckled again. "Yeah. Wow."

"Thank you, Michael."

"Thank you." He leaned in to kiss her, just had to kiss her, and his hand lightly cupped her face as he did so. He'd never get tired of kissing Jan Levinson.

She smiled against his lips as if reading his mind. "For what?"

"For being here. For coming."

Their foreheads touched and Jan nodded against him briefly. Then, pulling back, she glanced at their surroundings while asking, "So how was the wedding?"

"It was very... Vance Refrigeration-y."

She chuckled, a rather musical sound, and Michael adored this lighter side of her he'd been seeing for the past few months. "Is that a good thing or a bad thing, Michael?"

"It's good, I suppose. Phyllis looked nice."

"Yes, she did. I saw her a few moments ago and congratulated her. And Pam looks pretty, too. She told me where to find you and said I should ask you to dance. She said I'd be highly impressed." Jan furrowed her brows and tilted her head at him. "What does she mean by that?"

His brows flicked upward, and he smirked just slightly. "Well Jan, it means I've got some mad skills on the dance floor."

She rolled her eyes. "Right."

"Oh don't make me prove it." As if on cue, a new song drifted out from the reception hall... Sinatra, this time ("The Way You Look Tonight" -- a highly appropriate song, in Michael's opinion). He stood and held out his hand to Jan.

"Michael, we're outside, and..." She looked to the sky and blinked when a few snowflakes landed on her eyelashes. "And it's starting to snow."

"Come on, Jan."

She contemplated him a moment longer before finally taking the proffered hand and rising to her feet. She first removed his suit jacket and handed it back to him. Once he'd put it on, she stepped into his arms and they began to dance.

Just like inside, with Pam, Michael kept a steady tempo, guiding Jan around with his hand on the small of her back. Her spine seemed to straighten at his firm touch, and one perfectly-shaped brow lifted toward her hairline. "I guess now it's my turn to say 'wow.'"

One of her arms was draped across his shoulders and her other hand was grasped firmly in his. Michael was half-surprised she was allowing him to lead. But maybe some of that was the shock induced by his dancing prowess. "Impressed?" he queried.

"Very," she nodded. "Michael, did you take lessons?"

"In a way." Then he told her what he'd told Pam. She seemed even more impressed by the time he was done with his explanation.

"I would've thought you'd taken professional lessons, Michael. You've got a very... commanding presence when you dance."

"You were a dancer, weren't you?"

Jan nodded and continued allowing him to lead her around with light, bouncing steps. "All through high school, and a little in college. I loved it."

Michael nodded in response. He always thought Jan had a dancer's body. Tall, lithe... and those legs were definitely dancer's legs -- those babies were killer.

"Michael, why didn't you tell me you could dance?"

"What?" he pulled back. "We danced in Jamaica, what are you talking about?"

"That was slow-dancing, Michael. With alcohol in the blood and sex on the brain. That's a very different situation."

"I suppose you're right. Well... maybe I was saving these skills for a special occasion." Like their wedding. He desperately wanted to say that. But Pam said to leave the marriage stuff out.

"Hmm," was all that Jan came back with, and they danced silently through the rest of the song.

When it faded into an all-too-familiar Beatles ballad (the very same one they'd slow danced to in Jamaica when it was being played on the steel drums), Michael took that as a sign. He had to tell Jan how he felt. If she bolted, she bolted. "Jan."

He felt her snuggle a little further into his arms, resting her cheek against his as their tempo slowed to match the pace of the ballad. "Hmm?"

"There's something I have to tell you."

He must've sounded a little too serious, because she pulled back and searched his eyes, a little tiny crease indenting the space between her eyebrows. "Okay... is everything alright?"

Michael nodded immediately, assuring her that everything was fine. Great. He kissed her to prove it, and when he pulled away, he added, "In fact, things have been great for a long time. Even when they weren't great, for me they were great."

Jan thought about that for a long, long moment. Then, finally-- "...what?"

In my life I love you more. How was a line like that so easy for John Lennon? Michael had to wonder. "I mean... you make me happy, Jan. Even when we weren't really together together, I was happy. Because of you."

Her smile was brilliant... like that night at Chili's. But she didn't say anything... just let him talk, knowing he had more to say. Oh God, what else could he say?

"I'm in love with you, Jan."

The smile disappeared. Her mouth went slightly agape. Oh, God. "What?"

"I'm sorry." He hung his head and closed his eyes; stopped swaying. But Jan remained in his arms.

"Michael."

He met her eyes.

"Why are you apologizing?"

Snow was still falling, sparkling flakes were landing in Jan's hair and on her eyelashes, and Michael wasn't sure why he was apologizing. "I dunno." He searched her face. "You're not gonna say 'oh God' and walk away?"

Nope. Instead, she kissed him. Hard. She raked her fingers through his hair (she really loved his hair) and wrapped her arms around his neck. Michael held her tight and kissed her back for all she was worth, positive she'd dump him as soon as the kiss broke.

Then it broke. And their foreheads touched. And Michael didn't want to open his eyes because he didn't want the moment to end. It was only going to end badly. He'd said the dumbest thing ever, just blurted it out like an idiot, and now Jan was going to tell him it would never work, that they're too opposite, that he was a fun distraction from all the professionalism but she couldn't see them being anything long-term--

"I love you too."

Or... not. "What?"

When he pulled back a little and searched her eyes, she was smiling again. Like at Chili's. That bright, heart-stopping smile that she always ever gave only to him. "You heard me, Michael."

"Yeah." He knew he was grinning like an idiot, but he didn't care. "I did."

He kissed her again with the snow still falling and with that Beatles song echoing from the reception hall. In my life I love you more.

When they pulled back again, their foreheads once more connected. Michael was no longer afraid to open his eyes. "This is one of those moments, isn't it?"

"Hmm?" Jan was the first to pull back, and she draped her arms over his shoulders. They started to sway again, even though "their song" (as Michael was now always going to think of it) had faded into a Nat King Cole song. It was one of those moments.

"One of those movie moments, where we'll look back on it when we're old and gray and go, 'God, that was perfect.'"

"Possibly, yes." There was that dazzling smile again, and God how he loved her. This was the one woman he could definitely see himself getting old and gray with.

"Jan?"

"Yeah?"

"Do you ever picture yourself old and gray?"

An eyebrow flicked upward. "I try not to, Michael."

"Do you, though?" he pressed.

Her eyes cut to the side, and she just barely bit down on her bottom lip as she gave that some thought. "Sometimes," she responded after a moment.

Michael smiled. "Like, sitting in a rocking chair on your porch drinking coffee?"

Jan laughed, and it was such a beautiful sound. "Something like that, yes."

Michael nodded, thoughtful. So she'd thought about it. Pictured it. "Is there... another rocking chair next to yours?"

"Yes."

He had to ask. Couldn't help but ask. "Am I in it?"

Jan bit her lower lip, pondered, and looked up at him again. Contemplated him. "If I answer you, just how long are you going to hold it over my head?"

His eyes lit up. "Well, for the rest of our lives, I hope!"

Jan laughed and cupped his face, drawing him forward for a kiss. When they parted, their foreheads met again (Jan's forehead was probably addicted to his, Michael figured), and Jan's voice emerged in a whisper. "You are in the other rocking chair, Michael."

"Awesome." He pecked her lips and chuckled when she chuckled.

For a long moment, they stood there smiling at each other in the snow, arms around each other... Jan looking drop-dead gorgeous in her dress and Michael looking (in his own opinion, anyway) absolutely precious in his suit.

"So it was a beautiful wedding?"

"Yeah, pretty nice," he sighed. "It was a wedding."

"I know." She kissed his cheek and wrapped her arms tight around him, hugging him. He'd told her already all the awful details about his mom's wedding. She didn't bolt then, either. She really was the woman for him. "The flowers were nice."

"I 'spose. They're flowers."

Jan pulled back and looked thoughtful. "It might've been prettier to go with lilies for a winter wedding, though. Or white roses."

"Yeah. Or if it was in Jamaica... that'd be a whole lot better, too." Michael grinned. If everything could be in Jamaica the world would be a much better place.

Jan grinned. Obviously she thought so too. "Yes. On the beach."

He brushed away a few errant strands of hair that obscured her eyes from his view. And he always needed to see those incredible eyes. "Yeah, on the beach. And we'd stand right in front of the ocean while we say our vows."

Jan was staring off in to space, nodding slowly. "We could have an outdoor reception," she commented.

"Barefoot! We wouldn't let any of the guests wear shoes."

"I could wear a flower in my hair instead of a veil..."

"They could play our wedding song on the steel drums--"

Then, as if both of them realized at the exact same time they'd been using the word "we" for much of the discussion, both sets of eyes widened. Jan's jaw went slightly slack, like when he'd dropped the L-bomb on her. Michael, too, was standing in open-mouthed shock.

Then, he ventured timidly, cautiously, "Jan?"

She was still just a little bit stunned. "Uhh yeah?"

"Did we..." he narrowed his eyes in confusion, "just start planning our wedding?"

Jan's eyes were still wide, and she nodded slowly. "I think so."

"Huh." Michael tilted his head, pondering that. After a moment of some almost (very) painful thinking, he casually observed, "You're not freaking out."

As if just realizing it herself, Jan raised her eyebrows. "You're right. I'm not."

"Hmm." He kissed her gently, if a little tentatively. "So you'd, uh... you'd be okay with us getting married?"

"I... I think so." She smiled and nodded once, decisively. When she made up her mind about something, she wasn't easily dissuaded. "Yes."

He couldn't contain his elated grin. "Well... good!" Jan pretty much just said she'd marry him. Jan showed up when she said she wasn't going to (in the hottest, most amazing dress ever created by humans)... she told him she loved him (and kissed him about fifty bazillion times)... AND she pretty much said she'd marry him. This was the best wedding he'd ever been to.

Jan's giggle drew his attention, and when he met her eyes he realized he was still grinning like an idiot. She kissed him anyway, lingering, as she asked, "Should we go back inside?"

"Yeah. Let's go." Michael wrapped an arm around his girlfriend(future-wife)'s waist and kissed her temple as they headed back into the reception hall, strangely giddy. On their way in, he couldn't help but comment, "I sure I hope I remember to propose to you before the wedding."

Jan's melodious laugh echoed through the hall and Michael's soaring heart.




FIN


{x-posted to michaelandjan}
 
 
 
Yeah, that's me...: The Office [M/J Heart]corellianjedi2 on October 15th, 2007 08:20 am (UTC)
*grins*
I can't stop smiling and giggling!
*smiles*
a.regalish on October 19th, 2007 06:17 am (UTC)
Hehe, thanks so much! See? I'm an absolute sucker for fluff :P
van_canucksvan_canucks on November 4th, 2007 09:57 am (UTC)
Purely awesome. This made me so incredibly giddy. It's 2am, I should be in bed, but I couldn't stop reading this!

Great job again, and because of you, I now cannot stop smiling!