Date: October 28, 2020 04:02 pm Title: Ski Trip Pt.2
Ooooof. This is a classic early season near-miss - the worst thing you could do at any given point was allow Pam 0.5 seconds to think about what she was doing or having someone point out how close she was to Jim. You really captured the feel of that - and of the toll it takes on Jim.
This is again a solid picture of a Roy who just flat out doesn't put a particularly high premium on Pam's feelings or needs.
Some very good ensemble moments in this one - the truth or dare game was spot on, with game-for-anything Meredith and Kelly out to create drama if it's the last thing she does.
You've done well here with the touching foundation of friendship underlying it all - the way Pam is there to take care of Jim even after their awkward moment, the way he instinctively plays along with her on the phone and protects her from having to deal with Michael.
The bit about why Pam dresses the way she does is pretty insightful.
(And I liked the little hints of Dwight and Angela's attraction to each other long before they were a thing. Don't worry, you two - it's coming.)
Date: October 28, 2020 01:42 pm Title: Ski Trip Pt.2
Okay, you may have torn my heart in two, but you did it so well that I don’t even care. I love that Jim’s offer to have Pam wear his shirt completely backfired on him and I wanted her to kiss him just as much as he did. Haha
And as much as I love the happy endings and the two of them getting together, I am also kind of a sucker for the angst sometimes and you write it very well. (I just may need to go back and read one of your happier endings now.) Haha well done!
Date: October 28, 2020 12:34 pm Title: Ski Trip Pt.2
Picking up right where we left off. Seriously Roy is just an ass through all of this. He'd rather spend time with his buddies than Pam. Even kicks her out of bed. And then acts like its no big deal. Now granted Pam could have stood up for herself a bit more there, but still she shouldn't have to. However that's also very much in keeping with Pre-camera Pam. Trying to appease, not rock the boat to much.
The rest was very in keeping with early Office hijinks. Loved that Pam switched the names on her phone to Jim. She would be mortified if she had to call Micheal like that, but Jim can not only take the joke, but dish it all right back. Great banter there.
The pool part was also really well done. Grrr, Kevin, had to go and ruin things. However with that scene in mind it does also add a lot looking forward to the day in the dojo. No wonder Pam would freak out like she did there if that's the memory that was flashing through her mind.
Oh lonely heartbroken Jim. Trying to drown his troubles away. Really nice that Pam's there to take care of him. It's very sweet. Which of course makes it 100% believable that Micheal would then get them all banned due to his Michael-ness.
So both these last to chapters feel heartbreaking and sweet at the same time. Very much in the vein of S1 and S2. Nice job.
Date: October 27, 2020 09:42 pm Title: Ski Trip Pt.1
As usual, you nailed it. I think you especially did a great job with the internal tug-of-war Pam always has going on. I always figured since there were not many times Jim, Pam, AND Roy were all in the same place for an extended period of time, it was easy for Pam to separate her thoughts and feelings she had for each of them. But then suddenly they’re all together and she finds herself wanting to spend time with Jim but remembers she needs to be with Roy, and she’s unsure how to handle it all internally.
I’m looking forward to part 2! I’m sure if you keep it compliant with canon I will love it, but I’ll also love it if it steps into AU territory. Great work, again!
Author's Response: Thank you!! Yeah, I always felt like it would be easier for Pam while there was a clear separation of home life with Roy, work life with Jim, and I was always interested in those moments on the show where they ended up intertwining. I'm not a huge fan of writing AU unless it's a completely different setting, so it will be canon compliant (ish, to the extent that I've decided that the whole three years of Jim/Pam that we didn't get to see pre-pilot are fair game...) But glad to hear it!
Date: October 27, 2020 05:35 pm Title: Ski Trip Pt.1
You've got a really good Pam voice going in this one. You've managed to really reflect the sort of persistent discomfort and embarrassment Pam is living with mostly without complaint, and the excuses she's always making for Roy and good intentions she's attributing to him. Feels pretty right for the timeframe.
I also appreciate how you've managed to show both how Pam only really fits in with Jim among this crowd... but also how them fitting together is fragile and preserved by the lines they've drawn that the people around them can (and in this story do) force them into breaking.
This is peak Michael - striving to be loved and included and irritating everyone in the process, backing down when challenged by people he finds physically intimidating, and pretty much poisoning everything that could be fun. I keep wanting to reach into my screen and shake him.
You made some strong choices with Roy here - suggesting their sex life is pretty good for Pam, but that his attitude towards it is immature and poisonous. I totally buy Roy as the kind of guy who, having not had the chance to try to sleep with every woman in his sightline during his 20s, would be VERY braggy about his sex life to prove his masculinity.
You've written in some great small moments - Jim having ordered the second basket of nachos for Pam (which of course she never comes around to eat, and I love the way you play this where Jim is definitely thinking about how this is so typical of how he's overrating his importance to her, and she's happy for the first time that night when she finds out about it), the ways she's very aware of Jim's presence in a positive way even when Roy is around (something which Jim would probably be very pleased to know).
And I love the whole skiing sequence. Original enough to be memorable, but with enough reminders of Michael's Birthday to make it feel familiar too.
Author's Response: Thanks so much! I've generally found Pam's POV a bit easier to write (also where I tend to get carried away and end up with longer chapters than I was planning...) And yes: the Pam only fitting in with Jim, especially when she's with Roy and his friends, was something I was interested in exploring. Haha I do want to have a go at writing the more likeable/later season Michael at some point. And yes, I definitely think that's a thing for Roy too. The Michael's Birthday episode is just such a lovely one.
Date: October 27, 2020 03:32 pm Title: Ski Trip Pt.1
This one hits right in the S1/S2 feels. Like someone else has said this works really good as canon correct, but I can't help but hope it would go AU. There would be so many places where that could happen.
Roy is in true form. There's only three things he wants to do. Drink, ski, and Pam. Seriously the guy is being a complete ass about everything. The fact he's talking about Pam like that and behaving the way he is, even with other people in the room! Damn man, there are things called boundaries or not being selfish.
Kind of heartbreaking that Pam lets Roy walk all over her like that. That she lets him get away with being that handsy when she's clearly not comfortable with it. It fits where she is in her life but it's still rough to read.
Then there's Jim. Trying to salvage anything nice for her. He's clearly just as uncomfortable. Though there are some bright spots. The times he and Pam are by themselves show their great friendship. It's no wonder they depend on each other so much considering what they have to deal with.
Lots of emotions with this one due to the great writing.
Author's Response: Thank you so much! Yeah, I do find the Pam/Roy relationship quite depressing (even without Jim). It did occur to me once I'd finished writing that this could probably be standalone (I'm mainly being lazy by just adding it here). But I don't really like writing AU unless it's very AU, i.e. a completely different setting (otherwise if I like a show, I don't really like writing anything that changes the overall storyline). So I wouldn't choose to make this one AU myself, but that's just me!
Date: October 27, 2020 01:09 pm Title: Ski Trip Pt.1
I know these one shots are supposed to be canon but this trip could be a good AU story. I saw a lot of moments that could have been changed into an AU story. But still enjoyed it a lot.
Thank you! I personally am not a big fan of writings AUs unless they’re in a totally different setting, so probably wouldn’t go with making this one (but that’s definitely just a me thing). I’m really glad you enjoyed it! Thanks so much for leaving the review :)
Date: October 26, 2020 12:25 pm Title: Weekend at the Halperts
This is a really interesting and pretty unusual take on Jim's relationship with his mom, and one that I think works like gangbusters.
It's always struck me that given their somewhat tortured history, some of the other people in Jim and Pam's lives might not be fans, but the idea that that might extend to the point where they're decisively settled and happy with each other is a new one - and an appropriate one. Jim *has* stagnated, in a lot of ways, and his relationship with Pam is part of the reason why, albeit not in the way that Betsy has identified. I do think it's totally reasonable that his mom would be concerned about it, and concerned that the way he's going about things with Pam is a part of it. I think it's a great touch that in the end it's not really about *Pam* so much as it's about what she symbolizes to Betsy.
And I love a good Protective!Pam, especially one who can tell from the get-go that Jim is upset and trying to hide it and is able to be the support he won't asking for - and *especially* in conjunction with a Jim whose being defensive of her. Coming in a collection of one-shots that includes a lot of time from the era where they can't quite tell what each other is thinking or don't have confidence to know they're right when they do, it's a nice salve.
Great work as always!
Thank you so much! V glad to hear you think that take on Betsy worked. I could completely see Pam's parents loving Jim instantly, but I did wonder how on board Jim's parents would be from the get-go given the tortured history, the turning down a promotion for her...but yeah, agreed on it not actually being Pam as a person who's caused him to stagnate. I also think there are different ways to stagnate, i.e. being able to admit his feelings, being in a healthy relationship, are different kinds of growth.
Protective!Pam is one of my favourite Pams.
It is nice writing stuff where they're for once in sync and not afraid of being there for each other! Although I think my next chapter might be a return to form...
Date: October 26, 2020 12:14 pm Title: Weekend at the Halperts
I get so excited every time is see you post an update. Your writing is amazing and I can’t stress enough that your characterization of them is so. spot. on. Like when Jim says “Ah” and looks up to avoid getting emotional with Pam. So perfect.
You also seem to find these moments I never would have considered or thought about, but you write them so beautifully and they make perfect sense, like Betsy worried being about Jim.
I love seeing Pam stand up for Jim, I love that shows up late at night, and I absolutely love how you write their interactions with each other.
Basically, never stop writing these. Hahaha
Ah, thank you - that's really kind! I do love Pam standing up for Jim.
And I'm really enjoying writing these haha, so really glad that there's interest!
Date: October 26, 2020 11:23 am Title: Weekend at the Halperts
It's a different take on Betsy that's for sure. Most often she's seen as warm and loving to Pam. Just happy that Jim and Pam are finally happy kind of thing. However though this be different, it's also believable. Jim's gone through a lot of changes in the past year and a bit. Moving away, moving back, new girlfriend, possible promotion, staying where he is, another new girfriend, now an engagment. It's probably a lot for anyone to take in if there were not Jim.
I really love that Pam just shows up. Seems to be the first step in the ice cracking around Betsy's semi-hard heart. That Pam would just drop everything to be with Jim.
I REALLY liked that it's Pam that stood up to Pete and Tom. Their prank wasn't funny. It was insulting and rude. Granted later they did say Pam was welcome to the family, but they're still jerks and deserved to be called out on it. And if there's anyone who has the skill to take someone down a peg it's Jim and Pam.
Nice to see a reconcilliation with Betsy. Glad she can see exactly what's going on and that she was out of line. However I also like her advice to make sure Jim keeps his options open. Pam's last relationship stagnated because there was little change. More than likely Jim has vented to Betsy about that so she's holding up a mirror to make sure he doesn't do the same. Nice touch.
Author's Response: Thanks very much! And phew, I'm glad the Betsy thing was believable. I feel like I'd definitely at least question it if it was my child. And agreed, the Pete & Tom prank really wasn't funny, someone did need to call them out on it. I do think the not stagnating thing is important, and it was one of the reasons why I liked S9, and liked that the show didn't end with them staying at Dunder Mifflin.
Date: October 24, 2020 09:44 pm Title: Karaoke
This premise is completely delightful. I love that you’ve taken Jim’s comment from Email Surveillance and built this whole wonderful backstory behind it.
“Doing your mom was not a joke, Pam,” Well, this is absolutely perfect pre-canon line.
Oh. This is all so incredibly sweet. This is the very best of Jim, both in terms of how he treats Michael and how he supports Pam.
Date: October 24, 2020 09:15 pm Title: Expecting
I love your writing. Truly. I’ve been terrible with reviewing lately, but I’m so glad to be catching up on this. This chapter was gorgeous. I love that they both have their moments of freaking out and their moments of supporting one another, because it is terrifying - especially a first pregnancy - and there is just so much to think about. You capture it all so well.
Author's Response: Thank you! I really appreciate you taking the time to leave reviews on these - seriously, it means a lot :) And yeah, I really enjoyed those moments in The Delivery, I would've loved to see even more of them.
Date: October 24, 2020 09:07 pm Title: Summer Nights
Okay. Wow. I love so much about this. Pam having a one night stand after Roy and during Jim’s absence is so perfectly in character. I think she’s stretching & growing & trying to separate herself from the version of herself she’s been with Roy. I am such a fan of any Pam has a moment of independence/wilder streak than anticipated story. It’s such a human thing to do. Isabel telling her it’ll be good to get Roy out of her system & it’s not about Roy? Perfection. It’s all so, so good.
Author's Response: Thanks so much! And yeah, the Pam stretching and growing post Roy was an element of S3 that I really loved - it felt in character to me, so I'm really glad that came across.
Date: October 24, 2020 10:09 am Title: Karaoke
As usual, you've included some really strong details here - Michael's alternating-color text and Pam's musing on how long it must have taken him to put together is classic for both of them. And ooof, Roy not noticing Pam was giving him the silent treatment... that's definitely a thing that happened. Probably more than once.
Oh, poor Pam. Little does she know how right Jim was about doing your mom not being a joke.
I'm interested in your take on the Roy-Jim dynamic through Pam's eyes, especially at this moment when their postponed wedding is a serious festering wound in their relationship. I'd love to see you expand on that even more. (I'm especially curious about Pam's sense that Roy is at his worst when Jim's around - and whether that's Pam's perception or more or less objectively true.)
You've hit Michael perfectly here - he's striving and his need to be liked and his frustrated power moves and his tendency to immediately back down when challenged by someone he finds physically intimidating. Not easy, and good on you for doing it so well. Very solid Dwight and Angela as well.
I love the sense of Jim and Pam here - the banter and the sense of protectiveness they have for each other and the way Jim makes her feel brave.
Thank you so much! Writing this did make me think that I’d like to dig into the Jim/Roy and Pam dynamic a bit more. I do think it’s likely that Jim probably misses Roy at his ‘best’ (whatever that is), in as much as he can’t be 100% awful all the time. But I don’t think Roy is consciously his worst around Jim (I don’t think he cares enough about Jim tbh) - so my thoughts were more that it was Pam’s perception, i.e. she becomes more aware of Roy’s flaws when they’re around Jim. Both because of the obvious comparison, but also because she cares what Jim thinks. Like, Roy comes out with stuff on the show that she would definitely roll her eyes at with Jim if Michael said it, so I wondered how she squared that circle with Roy. And that it must be particularly hard to do when it happens in front of Jim.
I’m finding Michael quite tricky to write, so really glad to hear he came out ok in this one! I know his failed attempts to be macho are sort of played for laughs - but for me that moment in the basketball episode where he tries to go up against them and immediately backs down at the hint of an actual physical threat, was an interesting/slightly darker dynamic. Especially when Roy is a part of that.
Date: October 23, 2020 05:33 pm Title: Karaoke
Ok so there's a ton to unpack here. And it starts off right away. Jim talking to Pam about Michael doing your Mom was such a subtle yet clever foreshadow. Oh Pam if only you knew how true that would be someday, you'd be just as freaked out now as you will be then.
Roy is in fine form, and by that I mean being the lumbering oaf he normally is. Not listening to Pam, being selfish about just about everything. The guy just doesn't seem to care about Pam or even be willing to put himself in an uncomfortable position to help Pam out.
Really interesting seeing Pam's Jim vs. Roy thoughts. Especially pre-cameras like this. She's already having doubts about Roy. She knows she's not standing up for herself and you can tell it's eating at her. But yet she's not in the place in her life to speak up. Very pre-S1 of Pam.
Jim's great though. He does everything he can to help out Pam, make her feel more comfortable, and head off Michael as best he can. Granted at times that's impossible, but it's a lot more than anyone else *cough Roy cough* is willing to do.
Lovely that they share a duet and it's "Islands in the Stream." Makes the scene from Jim's BBQ have a lot more depth.
Also great way to annoy Dwight with pretending to not hear him and the door prank. Early Dwight was much more of a douchy Dwight and that shows here too. Good on ya Jim for bringing him down a peg.
Thank you - glad you liked it! And I know, poor Pam. I really loved Jim’s rendition of ‘Islands In The Stream’ in Email Surveillance, and I thought it would be funny if the reason Michael went straight for that song was because he’d seen them having a great time singing it before, and was trying to re-create it. And early Dwight really was more of a douche! Thanks so much for continuing to review :)
Date: October 22, 2020 03:38 pm Title: Business School Friend Pt.2
So I was prepared to really have my heart put through the wringer with this one. Fortunately for me, it wasn't as bad as I feared. Now granted this is in S3 and Karen is still there so there's going to be some heartache.
Loved protective Jim here. He wants to be there for Pam, he really does. However he's caught by circumstance. Though he makes up for not standing up for Pam in the bar by giving her that ride home.
You wrote Brad as very punchable. Seriously, jerks like that, who don't see women other than a target for the bedroom deserve all the punches.
Even though it hurts there's still some hints of the friendship they used to share. Nice way to thread that needle.
Author's Response: Ha, I'm very glad to hear it wasn't too bad! Yeah, I feel like S3 was angsty enough that it probably doesn't need more...I do really like protective Jim too, and glad to hear Brad's punchable-ness came across! Thanks so much for your review :)
Date: October 22, 2020 01:59 pm Title: Business School Friend Pt.2
The paragraph about Jim wanting to run after Brad was very strong – you’ve identified some clear conflicts between what a good friend should do and what someone who wants her wants to do that we don’t see explored much in canon-compliant fic, just because with Roy the answer is usually one and the same.
The paragraph with Karen kind flirtingly/kinda not trying to improve Jim’s pool game - very in character moment for her, and I like that you acknowledge that this part of her, this very un-Pammish characteristic, is kinda part of the appeal of Karen. (Real talk, a woman who knows what she wants and goes after it hard would be very appealing for someone trying to get over Pam Beesly.)
Oooof. Yeah, they were probably inevitably headed for another “talk” as soon as Brad arrived. I appreciate the way you’ve sketched Karen here – that this isn’t her being in any way unreasonable so much as just aware of what’s going on around her and the fact that Jim is swatting away every opportunity she’s giving him to prove Pam’s not in the front of his mind. She’s a no-bullshit kind of woman who accepts a fair amount of bullshit from Jim during this season, and you’ve squared that circle well here.
100% share that thought about Pam’s relationship with Isabel being strengthened post-Roy breakup.
That exchange outside the bar HURTS. SO them – so much between them, and they’re not quite communicating, not quite acknowledging what’s actually happening.
As you might have guessed, I am really attached to the friendship that’s fundamentally at the heart of who they are to each other, so this moment of Jim thinking that of course he’s going to drive her home… I love it so much.
The paragraph about how he sometimes forgets about Karen when he’s with Pam, and his “delusion” that she forgot about Roy with him… very insightful into S3 Jim. And Pam’s bad dates are creative and funny.
The ending, I think, is strong – I think it’s good to include some moments of happiness and connection between them in Season 3, just to make the way they ultimately find their way back to each other make sense.
Author's Response: Thank you so much! I'm so grateful to you for leaving such detailed reviews, they are really great :) And yeah, I was also actually quite a fan of Karen and believed that Jim genuinely liked her. I was trying hard not to make her totally unlikeable/unreasonable here, so I'm really glad that came across. I also liked the start of her friendship with Pam: I feel like she would have been quite a good friend for Pam to have and a good influence (especially on the assertiveness), so it was a shame that that didn't work out. Although for obvious reasons. And the Jim/Pam friendship is one of the best bits about them!
Date: October 22, 2020 07:29 am Title: Expecting
This is adorable and I loved it. Reminds me of panicky Jim when Pam won’t go to the hospital when she’s in labor, but I love that he also gets the chance to calm Pam down as well. Through all of these you have captured the essence of their relationship so well and they are wonderful. :)
Thank you so much! Ha yes, I do love panicky Jim on the show (but also that he manages to calm her down when he needs to).
I'm thrilled to hear that - thanks for taking the time to leave a review, I really appreciate it!
Date: October 22, 2020 06:02 am Title: Dorky Dancing
I absolutely love these one shoes. The last one where she finds out she's pregnant is so sweet. They're both so panicy, but calm each other down. I adore it.
Author's Response: Thanks so much - I'm really happy hear that! I really appreciate you taking the time to leave a review, so thank you :)