Log in

No account? Create an account
09 March 2008 @ 09:24 pm
Five Things Jim Wished He Hadn't Said To Pam [The Office; Jim/Pam]  
TITLE: Five Things Jim Wished He Hadn't Said To Pam
FANDOM: The Office
SPOILERS: Season three


1. It had only been to make her laugh. He really didn't mean to say it. She and Roy had been having another fight (over what, he wasn't sure -- it was so hard to tell anymore), she was glum, and... he thrived on making her laugh. So he said it.

And now he really wished he hadn't. He knew Pam better than anyone -- he knew that she'd be unable to resist teasing him about it for the rest of his life... or until she got tired of it, whatever came first.

"You know I used to be obsessed with ducks."

"What?" She'd almost choked on her water.

"Ducks. I loved 'em when I was a kid."

Her wide grin stole his heart a little bit more each time he saw it. "Like... rubber ducks?"

"Any kind of duck, really."

"Why?" It had been asked breathlessly, incredulously, as if she was questioning his sanity. And maybe she should.

He had merely shoved his hands in his pockets, shrugged his shoulders, and said, "I don't know, Pam. I guess it's just a phase every young boy needs to go through: loving ducks."

So he'd succeeded in making her laugh, but what he also inadvertently succeeded at was making himself a target. The next night as he was leaving (she'd left a half hour before him that day because she and Roy had made up and she wanted to sneak out early), he plucked his coat off the coat tree and went to put it on. It was then he realized his usual wool scarf had been replaced by one made of fleece... with bright yellow ducks all over it.

The morning after that, he arrived at work to find his computer screen covered with Daffy Duck decals. And then of course that led Dwight on to some diatribe about the inaccuracies of those old Looney Tunes cartoons, and how if he'd been Elmer Fudd both the duck and the rabbit would have been killed instantly with no time for shenanigans.

After lunch he returned to his desk, hoping to get some actual work done this time, and opened his desk to find the top drawer littered with rubber ducklings. The rest of his desk drawers had been filled with them, too -- in all different colors and sizes. He had looked up to glare at Pam playfully and found her eyes focused on her computer monitor (probably playing Free Cell); though he didn't miss the slight upward tilt of her lips.

Without removing her eyes from the screen, she teased, "Got a staring problem, Ducky?"

He really wished he hadn't told her that.


2. Honestly, he told her because he thought she knew. He kinda thought she would've heard it through the grapevine. And by grapevine, he meant Kelly. Or Michael. He thought she'd heard, and figured it would be less awkward to just come clean.

"Hey. Uh, listen. Um... I told Michael on the Booze Cruise -- it's so stupid, um -- I told Michael that I had had a crush on you when you first started here..."


"Well, I just thought that -- I figured you should hear it from me. Rather than, I mean, you know Michael."


And he told her it wasn't a big deal, that he was totally over it. And she seemed fine with that. They even kidded around with each other a bit more that day.

But then, the inevitable happened. The end of the day came, and they left, coincidentally, together. They'd stood together waiting for the elevator and things had gotten... awkward. Like, really awkward. Awkward smiles, awkward shifting, awkward jingling of change in pockets (for him, anyway -- Pam had just stared at her feet and folded her hands in front of her), and awkward shuffling onto the elevator.

It had never been like this between them. Even when they had spats, they always got over it and things were easy between them again. It had never been unbearably awkward like this. So Jim had stared at his feet, readjusted the strap of his messenger bag on his shoulder... and studiously avoided eye contact with his best friend.

And she had watched him, as the elevator doors closed them away together. He'd smiled only slightly and tilted his head to look at her. She had looked away to watch the elevator doors open on the ground floor. Then they'd walked out together. The whole time, every step he took, he berated himself. Right foot -- stupid! -- left foot -- stupid! -- right foot -- he was such a damn idiot.

Roy's pickup truck was waiting right outside the door, and as Pam went to get in she turned to him briefly... awkwardly. Why did everything have to get so damn awkward.

"So... I'll see you tomorrow?" There had been a question in her voice, as if she wondered whether he'd show up to work at all. Things weren't that bad... were they?

He nodded, stuffed his hands in the pockets of his coat, and smiled. "Yeah. See ya."

"See ya."

Then she'd gotten into Roy's pickup and they drove off, and Jim slowly opened the door to his Corolla. He got in, shut the door, and sighed heavily into his empty, freezing cold car.

He really should not have told her that.


3. "I'm the one who complained about you."

He shouldn't have told her that. He shouldn't have even complained about her to begin with. It's just that she'd been driving him crazy with all the wedding plans, right in the middle of the office... asking his opinion on this centerpiece versus that centerpiece, making him feel like it was his wedding too and killing him a little bit more every second with the realization that she was marrying another guy.

And Pam had gotten mad. Like, worse than when he teased her about her horrid first date with Roy. For the rest of the day she wouldn't look at him, wouldn't talk to him. Normally when they fought he could find some way to apologize that she'd find endearing... or he'd buy her french onion Sun Chips and everything would be good again. But not this time.

And it didn't matter that he'd gone to Toby and redacted the complaint. That made no difference to Pam. The very idea that he lodged a complaint against her put a huge dent into their friendship. So the next morning, he called in -- early, so as not to talk to an angry Pam -- and left a voicemail saying he'd be in late. He'd lied and said he had a doctor's appointment.

Instead, he went to New York. He'd gone to see Jan. And he requested the transfer to Stamford -- the very one that Dwight had mentioned in hopes of getting him to leave. Jan had asked him why he suddenly wanted to leave Scranton, and he had to resist telling her everything.

He had to resist the temptation to spill his guts and confess it was because he was in love with his best friend; because he loved her irrevocably but would never be with her. He resisted telling Jan that it'd be torture for him to sit across from the reception desk, looking at Pam and knowing she was married to someone else. He instead made something up about needing a change of scenery, needing to explore other options.

And Jan had accepted that. She'd helped him secure a new position at the Stamford branch as Assistant Regional Manager -- and not Assistant TO the Regional Manager -- this one, unlike Dwight's "promotion" came with a real title and actual pay increase. It was his for the taking... all he had to do was say yes.

But he hesitated; told Jan he needed some time to think about it. And, though she'd given him a look of confusion, she accepted that, and told him to call her as soon as he'd made his decision.

So he'd gone back to Scranton weighing his options. What if things between him and Pam could be good again? What if, by some miracle, she didn't marry Roy? He still had unfinished business in Scranton, and couldn't accept the transfer without knowing once and for all how things between him and Pam would turn out.

The first thing he had to do was apologize. He shouldn't have complained about her. And... why the hell did he tell her?


4. "I'm in love with you."


"I'm really sorry if that's weird for you to hear, but I needed you to... hear it. Probably not good timing, I know that, I just--"

"What are you doing? What do you expect me to say to that?"

He didn't know. He honestly didn't know. He didn't know what he expected her to say, he didn't know what possessed him to even say it. The look on her face shattered his heart, as did the coldness of her tone. Why the hell had he said it? Looking back on it, he couldn't figure it out.

He just knew he had to say it. She was getting married, he was running out of time... and he had nothing left to lose. He'd set up a possible transfer with Jan already and was all prepared to leave Scranton behind... so he had literally nothing to lose.

Nothing except, of course, his best friend. And he lost her.

Well, he kissed her first... was kissed back with passion... got his hopes up... and was let down again. He lost her. Even though she'd kissed him, admitted without words that she felt the same, she was still going to marry Roy. She was still going to dismiss the idea that they could've had anything besides friendship.

So Jim left. He told Jan he'd take the transfer to Stamford... came in quietly that Saturday to pack up his desk and he just... left. He had no future in Scranton. Not the one that he wanted, anyway. The future there consisted of him continuing to pine away over his best friend (soon-to-be-married best friend), and hating every day of his life just a little bit more because she'd never be his.

Yeah, he definitely wished he hadn't told her that.


5. Why the hell did he say that? It was awkward, moronic, impetuous and just... probably the dumbest thing he could have said to her.

Well okay... one of the dumbest things he could've said to her.

Since accidentally getting her on the phone that night he called to get Kevin's extension, they started calling each other a lot more. And having long conversations. It had been kind of like old times again.

He'd call her as soon as he got home from work and they'd chat about everything and nothing as he made himself some dinner, ate it quietly, and flipped through the channels on TV only to find that there was really nothing on. Sometimes they'd watch TV together... tune in to the same station and just poke fun at whatever boring talk show or witless sitcom was on at the moment.

"You know, I actually kind of like this show," Pam had commented one night when they had stumbled across an old episode of The X-Files.

"No way. Pam Beesly, a sci-fi nerd? Pam, come on."

"What? You like this show too! You told me once."

"Yeah, because Gillian Anderson's hot. What's your excuse?"

"Well, David Duchovny's pretty hot. And... you have to admit that Mulder and Scully are super cute."

"Ugh." He had scrubbed a hand over his face as if all the energy had been drained from him in that one comment. "Pam, 'super cute'? You've been hanging around Kelly a lot, haven't you?"


"She's wreaking havoc on your speech patterns, Beesly. Get out now, while there's still time to save yourself."

She had giggled. "Come on, Halpert. Mulder and Scully are considered one of the greatest couples on television. You can't sit there and mock me and not admit that you like them, too."


"Come on..."

He sighed, and after a long pause, finally admitted, "Alright, so I guess there's something just a little bit... magical... about them."

"Magical?" She'd practically guffawed at him.

"Oh. Right. Nice. Trick me into saying something and then make fun of me. Real nice, Beesly."

"You're such a dork."

"You're the one who likes The X-Files for the romance factor. Do you have an X-Files poster in your fancy new apartment?"


He'd scoffed under his breath, "Right."

Pam had laughed again, so he had to laugh... and pretty soon they were laughing at nothing in particular. It really was like old times. When they'd started to quiet down, he sighed, and impulsively blurted out, "I miss you."

Then there had been silence. Jim had to try to refrain from literally hitting himself in the face -- repeatedly -- for the boneheaded comment. It was going to be like Casino Night all over again. And really, how desperate sounding was that? He was the one that left, and yet he was pining and telling her he missed her?

He was such an idiot. He knew he was going to regret telling her that forever....

"I miss you too."

....Until she said that.


lily barteverypoembreaks on March 10th, 2008 02:47 pm (UTC)
That was heartbreaking AND adorable. :D Nice.
a.: jam; are two strangers turning into dustregalish on March 10th, 2008 11:23 pm (UTC)
Hehe, thanks sweetie! This is a repost of an old Jam fic I wrote forever ago; lol I'd almost forgotten I'd written any Jam until I was making a master list of all my fic :D