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Decompression (Leslie/Ann) PG - shoutoutout

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April 19th, 2009


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05:01 pm - Decompression (Leslie/Ann) PG
Title: Decompression
Author: shoutoutout
Pairing/Character: Leslie/Ann
Rating: PG
Summary: A different kind of strength. Leslie and Ann after the town hall meeting from Canvassing.
Word Count: 953
Spoilers: Canvassing
Disclaimer: I don't own Parks and Recreation or the characters, no copyright infringement is intended.



This is supposed to be a TV show.

It's an all of a sudden realization for Ann when she looks down at the plate of 15 chocolate mini-muffins balanced in her hand and then back up at the two grown men arguing in the parking lot about beautiful, expensive birds; this is supposed to be a TV show.

It's depressing, she thinks, as she turns and is face to face with a giant camera lens recording the action beyond her, that this is going to somehow pass as entertainment, that someone will (conceivably) take time out of their own lives to watch a man with two broken legs call another man a douche outside of the Smithfield Community Center in Pawnee, Indiana.

But it's real, it's her life, this pit. Her entire life, she's slowly accepting, since Andy fell in and since she joined Leslie's sub-committee. Which is strange, Ann decides as she heads back inside to collect the purse she forgot in favor of the leftover mini-muffins Andy had wanted, but not altogether unexpected because since when has her life ever really been about her, right?

So she can't really understand why the cameramen would think that any other person would want to involve this sort of drudgery into their lives as entertainment, but then again there's Leslie, who had married herself to the pit so completely that it seems like, between the two of them, there's some whole entire self devoted to a contractor's abandoned mess.

And well, that's probably the most depressing part of it all.

The room seems a little sadder now that everyone's left, that all the anger that those people had brought in was taken back just as quickly, and the idea that, for her and Leslie, this is all there is. That thought, on top of all the other ones, makes Ann pause and swallow before meeting Leslie's eyes whom she didn't even know was still here but, like a lot of life, isn't really all that surprising.

"Hey, Ann."

"Hey, rough night, right?" She talks softly because she isn't quite sure what Leslie's thinking; she had been smiling when they had cleaned up but was still quiet, and now, sitting on the stage, is just another depressing image to add to Ann's growing collection.

"That guy with the birds called me Park Lady."

Ann isn't quite sure how to take that either so she just nods and heads towards the stage where her purse is under the chair next to Leslie. She sits beside her and they both stare at the back of the room, focusing on different parts of the wall, decompressing.

"The cameras just left," Leslie starts, and Ann looks on with interest. "Can't wait to see tonight's footage."

It's a weird thing with Leslie, the way she is, because Ann can't tell if she's being hopelessly sincere or just average-person sarcastic (she suspects it's the former) and so Ann laughs a little and says, "Yeah, they're filming Andy and Lawrence out in the parking lot right now. Thrilling stuff."

Leslie leans forward, her elbows on her knees and her chin in her hands, turns to Ann, and laughs like she really needed to. Like they both really needed to, then Leslie is shaking her head like she doesn't believe it and smirks before: "My mother came tonight even after I fake real invited her."

Again, Ann just nods (because where would that sentence even start to make sense?) and asks, "So your first sub-committee town hall meeting, how did it feel?"

She regrets prodding a second after the question leaves her mouth because Leslie's face tightens up and she sits back straight. "I told the cameras that I loved every minute of it." She's nodding, as if replaying the moment back in her head. She looks at Ann quickly, smiles sort of sadly, and then her eyes are back on some incomprehensible spot on the wall.

And it's really not an answer, Ann recognizes, understands that that bird guy called me Park Lady isn't really an answer either, but looking at the plate of mini-muffins on the seat beside her and then to Leslie, it's all right because, and God if this isn't depressing, Leslie is a lot stronger than Ann will ever be.

Suddenly, their marriage to the pit and to the park overwhelms Ann completely, like some great part of her life is somehow connected fully to this woman, and a rush of something overtakes her.

"I'm really, really proud of you."

Ann can't decide if it's her own sincerity or the hand that she's placed on top of Leslie's that surprises her the most. For a split second she wonders if she's even allowed to tell Leslie that she's proud of her, as if Ann is granted any sort of judge of character to a woman she only met a few weeks ago and whose conversations have been mostly dominated by a giant hole in the ground, and so she panics before Leslie smiles at her.

"Thanks," Leslie says, and her simplicity is enough to punch Ann in the stomach.

They start to leave then, Ann self-consciously wiping her hand on her pants, and catches a look of contentment across the other woman's face before they both head out to the parking lot. "See you on Saturday?" Ann asks, referring to their next sub-committee meeting, and adjusts the purse on her shoulder.

And like it's some running theme of the night, Leslie doesn't answer and instead gives Ann, "That woman was a real bitch, right?"

She catches Andy's eye, he's all propped up against the car looking upset, and turns back to Leslie with a grin. "Yeah, she really, really was."


(9 comments | Leave a comment)

Comments:


[User Picture]
From:she_burns1
Date:April 20th, 2009 02:30 am (UTC)
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Oh my god - this is amazing.

When I wrote my first P&R fic, I said it wouldn't be the best fic for P&R, that others would come along and do much better and this - this si SO much better.

You managed to capture the dryness of the show but also inject a lovely bit of angst and sweetness and heart and it's just breathtaking.

Seriously, nothing but love.

PLEASE write more in teh future! To not do so would be a travesty of the highest order!
[User Picture]
From:shoutoutout
Date:April 21st, 2009 12:39 am (UTC)
(Link)
Thank you! I'm really looking forward to reading more Parks and Rec stories.. I can feel greatness looming!
[User Picture]
From:michellek
Date:April 20th, 2009 06:02 am (UTC)
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I pretty much just want to echo everything she_burns1 said. I love this fic a lot.
[User Picture]
From:shoutoutout
Date:April 21st, 2009 12:39 am (UTC)
(Link)
Haha, thanks! I appreciate it!
From:(Anonymous)
Date:April 20th, 2009 04:12 pm (UTC)
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this fic is great!! keep up the work!

you dont mind if i put ure fic up in my parks fanfic section of my amy forum do you??? i will give credit of course.
xxx

this is amyzfollie on lj.
[User Picture]
From:shoutoutout
Date:April 21st, 2009 12:39 am (UTC)
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Thank you! Yes, go ahead! Awesome.
(Deleted comment)
[User Picture]
From:shoutoutout
Date:April 25th, 2009 02:47 am (UTC)
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Thank you! I'm definitely going to try!
(Deleted comment)
[User Picture]
From:shoutoutout
Date:April 25th, 2009 02:48 am (UTC)
(Link)
Thank you!
[User Picture]
From:darkemberdagger
Date:September 27th, 2011 06:51 pm (UTC)
(Link)
Ha this was really great. I absolutely love this pairing!

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