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Author's Chapter Notes:

The hug aftermath.

They finally go to the lake. 

A.A.R.M. Pt 1 


"No way? Pam Beagsley is a boy?" Pam said as she took a bite out of Jim's grilled cheese sandwich. They were seated together on the rooftop with a freshly lit candle on the floor. It had already been two hours  since they were reunited back in the warehouse. They had spent their time catching up on what had happened from the time Jim left for Colorado.


"Yes," Jim replied. "and that's not even the worst part. Apparently Michael got so drunk one night and he ended up throwing up on him."


"Oh my God!" Pam said as she bursted into laughter over stories of her former boss, "I've never actually seen Michael drunk, you know? That must've been a sight."


"Well, I would have enjoyed it if I didn't get so insanely wasted," Jim took a sip from his grape soda before continuing, "I was really out of it. Michael actually took care of me. He did a lot of impressions of Adam Sandler to keep women away from me. And which even in my inebriated state, they sounded so awful. So just imagine what it was like for someone more sober."


"I'd probably give him an 'I'm judging you' look like" Pam proceeded to squint her eyes in a joking manner and stared directly into Jim's eyes.


"That's your 'I'm judging you' face?" Jim tried his best to hold his giggle as he spoke, "You look like you're holding in a very long fart"


"Oh come on!" Pam said as she playfully hit him on the shoulder. "It couldn't have been that bad. You're totally exaggerating about how I really looked."


"No, it was really bad," Jim said while leaning back on his chair, "You thought you were looking all serious but I swear your face went like..." Jim leaned forward to face her, squinted his eyes and gave a half-smirk. Even with Jim making a ridiculous goofy face, Pam felt enamored at the sight of him in a lighter, more comfortable mood. She leaned forward and proceeded to give him a kiss on the lips. They continued making out under the night sky, both missing feeling each other after three days of no physical interaction, when a fly landed on Jim's cheek causing him to involuntarily slap himself.


Pam was startled at what had happened and stared at him. She then snickered and eventually broke off into a fit laughter saying, "Well, that certainly killed the mood."


"Oh Beesly, I missed you…" Jim smiled at her, wrapped his arm around her and kissed her on the forehead. 


"I missed you too," Pam said as she leaned on his shoulder, "this will always be my favorite part of the building, you know?"


"Yeah, mine too," Jim continued to grin and said, "… and that supply closet."


"Jim!" Pam pretended to shove him before putting her back on his shoulder, "We're sleeping on the same bed tonight right?"


"Eh," he gave her a smirk as he continued teasing her, "I kinda liked my personal space. But sure, if that's what you really want."


They both laughed as he continued caressing her hair. A few minutes have passed and they both remained still in their positions, neither of them wanting to let go, still enjoying each other's company even in silence.


Pam eventually looked up at him and spoke, "Hey… Jim"


"Yeah?"


"I want you to stay," she said as she slowly let go to face him directly. This was the first time either had spoken about what they wanted to do moving forward. Being away from each other for three days seemed like a blessing in disguise as they had a lot to catch up on, but the night had already gone on to a point where the inevitable conversation would happen.


Jim looked at the sky as if he were pretending to think and quickly looked back at her, "Done."


"Jim, come on," Pam couldn't help but giggle at him acting like he was ticking off an item on his imaginary checklist, 'I'm being serious."


"But I am being serious. Pam. I'm calling them to—"


"Wait, let me finish," Pam interrupted before he could say anything further, "I guess what I want to say is I'm sorry if I hadn't been completely honest with you. With how I felt. So, I'll really be more open to you from now on because really want this…us to work. I know you love your new job and I know it's nice to see it taking off but I just feel like things are changing so fast. It feels like our life's been going a million miles per hour and I really want to catch up to where you are, I really do Jim. But I don't think I'm there yet. And I really wish I've told you this before but I guess I didn't want to because I didn't want you to feel like I'm holding you back. So there, that's how I feel."


Pam looked down, almost embarrassed at her own honesty. She was waiting for Jim to say something and closed her eyes as if bracing herself for the worst, "Oh God, this is it, we're done, who gets custody of the kids, who—"


"Pam…" she felt Jim hold her hands and kissed her on the lips, "You say I love this job so much but I love you even more. I tried imagining my life without you and all the success in the world felt meaningless without you in it. You think staying here means I'm giving up an opportunity of a lifetime? No, staying here means I'm choosing you. It means I'm choosing our children. Our family, Pam. And I choose you everyday. And I'll continue to choose you until the day I die. My future is wherever you are. Never ever ever…forget that. I love you."


Pam immediately teared up and wrapped her arms around him, "I love you."


Jim couldn't help but get choked up with Pam getting emotional. He embraced her as tight as he could and proceeded to kiss her with urgency, as if the world around them would collapse at any point.


———————————————————


"So it's the weekend and we decided to take the kids to the lake. I wanted to take them here before but we ended up in Dwight's work bus. Pam and I are doing great, we had a really nice morning…" Jim smirked in front of the camera crew, as Pam stared at her while holding their two children.


"Really Jim? In front of the kids?"


"It's not like they can understand us."


"There's a camera…"


Jim shrugged as he continued speaking to the camera crew, "Speaking of, I don't really know why you followed us. I guess it's fine as long as you're not in our hotel room…"


"Okay, Cece. Why don't you help mommy set up the picnic while daddy keeps talking to the cameras?"


Cece ran behind them as Pam flicked Jim on the head before following her.


"She's fine. Oh, also I left Athlead. We just had a long phone call when we got back home. They're still trying to convince me to see it through since I contributed so much into getting an investor but I just…I almost lost Pam over this and I can't let it happen again. We both agreed to still invest and…"


"Jim! Look at Cece!" Pam screamed as she frantically at him from afar. He looked behind and saw Cece was blowing bubbles at the sky.


"Okay, I gotta go," Jim went to their picnic mat, grabbed Cece from behind and lifted her. "Hey there, Princess!"


"Daddy, I'm flying!" Cece giggled as he continued playing with her.


"Okay, baby. I gotta stop before I throw my back. You're not getting any lighter," he joked as he sat her down. He then hugged Pam from behind and gave her a kiss on the cheek before positioning himself beside her.


"Ham and cheese?" Pam smiled as she handed him his usual lunch.


"Why, thank you, how could I ever live without you?" he said as he took a huge bite off the sandwich instead of taking it from her.


"You are such a dork," she laughed as she threw the sandwich at him.


"Oh, it is on…." Jim immediately grabbed a handful of baby carrots and began chucking them at her.


"Okay, no Jim. Jim, stop!" Pam then took Phillip and pretended to use him as a shield.


"Really, Pam? You would use our own child as protection? So disappointing…"


"Hey, all is fair in this mat," Pam then proceeded to grab a handful of grapes and threw them directly at his face.


"Hey! I caught one!" Jim excitedly told her as he continued chewing on the grape that he managed to catch with his mouth.


"I've never been more in love," Pam sarcastically replied, "So…what do you wanna do today?"


"I don't know, swim at the lake with the kids? Watch 28 Days in the hotel? Pretty sure they labelled it right this time."


"Ha ha, so funny Halpert," she nudged him in weakly in the arm, "Okay, I'll just get ready. I already applied sunscreen on the kids so I guess you can already head on out with them."


"Alright, that's what I'm talking about!" Jim quickly dressed Phillip and Cece up in life vests. He then took off his shirt and kissed Pam on the cheek, "See you later!" He carried Phillip and grabbed Cece by the hand while walking towards the lake.


Pam looked on and watched as her husband played with their children on the lake. She enjoyed seeing Jim having a lot of fun with the people that matter to him the most, but she kept replaying the conversation that she overheard the night before. 


It was late in the evening and Pam woke up by herself in the bedroom. She rose up to look for Jim and found him standing in the guest bedroom, with his phone in his ear. He told her beforehand that he was going to inform his colleagues that he was leaving Athlead so she deduced that it was the reason he was still awake.


"Yeah, I'm sure… we agreed to still invest but…"

"I know it's huge, but I can't do this to my family anymore. It's too much for them. I told you about the time I missed my daughter's recital right?"

"I thought not making a name for myself was my biggest fear, but no. It's losing her Wade…I can't lose her. It would destroy me."

"She's not ready and I don't know if she ever will be, but that doesn't matter…"


"...Did I force him to do this?"


"Pam!" Her train of thought was derailed upon hearing Jim's voice, "Come on in! The water's awesome!"


"Coming!"


———————————————————


Jim looked frantically for Pam outside the office. It was his first day back from Colorado and after spending the weekend with his family, he felt ready to go full-time with Dunder Mifflin and be with his wife. The day initially was going really fine as he and Dwight firmly established their no-nonsense policy.


Of course, it wouldn't be a normal day in the office for him if he was not messing with his new manager so he set it upon himself to make sure that Dwight would hire an Assistant to the Assistant to the Regional Manager. He elaborately set up challenges to ensure that Dwight would see that the only person capable of being in that position would be himself which would mean Dwight would end up being his own assistant. He also enjoyed watching Pam having fun as she quickly deduced that this was another one of his pranks. However, it all came to a halt when at the crowning ceremony, she ran away looking upset.


"I don't know what I did. I thought we were having fun," He thought to himself as he scanned his surroundings, not knowing where to search first. "I can't believe this is happening again."


He turned to the side of the warehouse and saw her standing alone, clearly deep in thought.


"Hey," he said as he walked towards her.


She turned around and it upset Jim when she looked like she was about to cry, "Hey."


"You all right?" He asked and his heart sank as she light shook her head, "What's going on?"


"Are you happy?" Pam asked


"Yes, I'm happy," he tried to reassure her.


"No, I know you're like, happy and like you had fun today, and that was fun. But what about a year from now?"


"What?"


"What about five years from now? Because I'm so glad you're back, baby, and I'm happy we've spend so much time together since you came back, but I'm just…I was talking to Darryl, and he was talking about the trip, and I heard your call with Wade, and I just feel like you're giving up so much."


"This was my decision, not yours. You didn't force me."


"I kind of forced you to do it."

 

"You did not force me to do this. I don't know how else to tell you."


"I'm afraid that you're gonna resent me and I'm afraid that this is not enough for you—"


"Resent you?" 


"I'm afraid that I'm not enough for you."


Jim was in disbelief at the words coming out of Pam's mouth. He began to feel afraid that he may have done enough to convince her he was happy with her. He stared into her eyes which were already beginning to well up, "Is that really what you think?" 


Pam hesitated to say anything else and merely looked at him, helpless at how she was feeling and agonizing over having Jim feel like he wasn't doing enough. She did not intend to hurt him as she knew he was doing his best in keeping her happy. 


Just as she could no longer hold back the tears, Jim immediately wrapped his arms around her and whispered, "Hey, hey, hey, hey" as he tried to calm her down.


Chapter End Notes:

Michael Scott: [sighs] Oh, Pam. [Rrrrrr] I can't stay mad at you.

Okay, but seriously this is the last chapter...of me having Pam be a downer because A.A.R.M. is next.

 Reviews are appreciated like Jan's love for her candles

 

 


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