1. Prologue by Dernhelm
2. Chapter 1 by Dernhelm
Pam didn’t leave the bathroom for a bit too long.
Usually, Jim would’ve been there, with a glass of water and soft, reassuring words (‘shhh, it’s gonna be better, babe,’ ‘no, you’re NOT gross,’ ‘here, let me help you with your hair’). But not this time.
In the other room, he measured the space with his restless strides, a phone pressed to his ear.
‘...yes. Yes. This morning.’
His hand flew to his hair impatiently.
‘Last week. And a fortnight ago. No, we don’t keep those.’
‘Are you kidding me?.. Sorry, sorry. No, I don’t know who…’
He heard the sound of flushing water and spoke to his invisible interlocutor.
‘I’ll call you back. Yes, thank you. We’ll be.’
He hid the phone just a moment before Pam walked in, pale and still quivering.
‘How are you feeling?’ Jim’s voice was full of concern as he stepped closer to his fiancée and took her hands.
‘It’s just morning sickness, nothing that I haven’t had before,’ her white lips stretched in a ghostly smile. ‘Nothing to worry about.’
And he knew that she lied.
But instead of calling her out on her lies, he pulled her into his embrace. He felt as her tight shoulders relaxed a little, felt her chest rise and fall, letting out a sigh, and his arms tightened around her petite frame. Pam let out another sigh, sounding more like a sob, and he planted a gentle kiss on the top of her head.
He knew that she lied because the source of her disturbance was in his pocket, a crumpled piece of paper, saved by him from a trashcan and sprinkled with ugly paper cut letters.
youRe a cheAting wHore. I hoPe you and your bastard wIll rot in hEll.
It was the third one.
The third one that he knew of.
I'm going to continue this story.
Two weeks ago
‘How do you think, for how long does Dwight hold grudges against me?’
Jim put his sandwich down and glanced at Pam.
‘Did you pull a prank on him without telling me? I thought we were friends.’
‘Do you believe I’d do that to you?’ she looked a bit too much offended for it to be genuine. ‘I thought we were friends.’
Jim shook his head, rolling his eyes at her. Pam threw a piece of her salad at him, but he knew she wasn’t mad.
‘So, what’s the thing with Dwight then?’
‘I don’t know. I just think he’s still angry at me for losing that game.’
‘Why would he?’ Jim furrowed his brows. ‘It’s not your fault that they didn’t find an adequate replacement. Besides, if he’d known the real reason, he’d never have said a thing.’
Pam sighed and looked at him with the endless patience of the elementary school teacher, who heard once again that two plus two was five.
‘Jim. Of course, he knew.’
Maybe, she wasn’t wrong.
Their contracts said they and their closest relatives and friends weren’t allowed to watch the documentary. The penalty for breaking this rule was way too high for him to risk, but he personally had never (well… almost never) felt the temptation of watching their lives on screen anyway. On the other hand, his mom called her cousin from Indiana weekly and got all the fresh updates she’d never received from her son. He didn’t understand her excitement about the show, but it made her happy, so he’d also never complained.
And Dwight, with his control issues, for sure had found some loophole that helped him get the information he needed without breaking the rules.
They fell silent when Meredith walked into the breakroom where they were having their lunch.
‘Still, this is ridiculous even for Dwight,’ Jim said as soon as Meredith got her Coke and left. ‘He’d rather tell you some story about his great-grandma. Or read you a lecture on fetuses.’
‘Do you think Dwight’s ridiculousness has limits?’
Pam made a face and adjusted invisible glasses on her nose, pulling a perfect Dwight impression.
‘Having much fun lately? Who do you think you are?’
‘Wow, how rude! Did he say so?’
‘No,’ she shrugged. ‘But he was very inventive about the note he left me.’
‘Really? I have to check it out!’
‘Sorry,’ Pam said. ‘You’d have to dig through the dumpster to do that.’
Oh well. Dwight being Dwight again, annoying yet harmless, and Pam didn’t seem to be really bothered by his antics.
It didn’t mean, though, that they should be left without repayment.
‘You know,’ he said, lowering his voice conspiratorially. ‘I have one thing on my mind that might distract Dwight from you for a while.’
‘Tell me!’ she murmured in the same manner. ‘We should join our forces.’
His breath hitched when she looked at him, with twinkling eyes and mischievous smile, joyful and happy.
He should’ve probably gotten used to it, being near her, with her.
Being loved by her.
But still, she didn’t fail to catch him off guard.
Jim sneakily looked around and, noticing no single soul or camera, put his hand under the table at her still flat stomach. A peculiar mix of shyness and pride was in her smile as she looked down and covered his big hand with hers tiny.
He always knew that she would create a masterpiece one day, but the idea that he might participate in this creation…
He still couldn’t wrap his mind around this miracle.
Thank you for reading!