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In the Office They Parted [LBD fic, Lizzie/Darcy]

Title: In the Office They Parted
Author: quick_ly
Fandom: The Lizzie Bennet Diaries
Pairing: Lizzie/Darcy
Rating: T-ish? Let’s say it’s a hard T.
Summary: The office of Collins & Collins would like to formally apologize to its VC, Catherine de Bourgh, for any damage and misbehavior that took place on company property on the night of November 15th, 2012; mockumentary/The Office style LBD AU. Because I’m a little crazy.
Disclaimer: I do not own The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, Pride and Prejudice, or The Office.
A/N: This is what happens when I watch old episodes of The Office on a LBD high. I had been thinking before about writing something where Lizzie and Darcy get drunk and make out (and maybe more), and then I re-watched “The Dundies” and “The Client” back-to-back, and decided that Lizzie and Darcy could be season two Jim and Pam, only without fiancées and angst, and just Lizzie hating him for a bit but then learning the truth and making out with him instead. The rest of this just kind of fell into place. There is a bit of Willing Suspension of Disbelief, just in terms of certain events and how they play out in relation to earlier events (listen – this story takes place in one night – I had to do a little bit of cramming.) This was also written without a beta, so all mistakes are mine.






-




The office of Collins & Collins would like to formally apologize to its VC, Catherine de Bourgh, for any damage and misbehavior that took place on company property on the night of November 15th, 2012.

Everyone feels bad about their behavior. Really.




-




CUT TO RICKY:

“We here at Collins & Collins have a very strict rule prohibiting the consumption of alcohol on company time, and I personality most certainly do not tolerate the actions of those specific employees during the night of November 15th, 2012. Rest assured that they have been disciplined.”

[Silence]

[Twitches]

[He stands and leaves]




-




CUT TO CHARLOTTE:

“Yes – we do have a policy about drinking on company time. Although, if we want to be specific, the incident did not take place during work hours.”

[Pause]

“It just happened on company property. So.”

[Starts to say something else, but stops]

“We’re very sorry.”




-




CUT TO DARCY:

[Silence]

[Guilty look to camera]

[Disgruntled sigh]

“I’m sorry, what was the question again?”




-




[Three days earlier]




-




Collins & Collins is a web-video production company based in San Francisco that primarily deals with the management of making and promoting internet bound videos. It is owned by Ms. Catherine de Bourgh, an older business woman who does most of her work from home, and primarily run by Ricky Collins, its namesake and manager. The branch is also overseen by Charlotte Lu, the assistant to the manager, and William Darcy, branch supervisor and Ms. de Bourgh’s nephew (he also serves as her eyes and ears, and is thus basically everyone’s boss. Ricky isn’t a fan of this setup.)

Lizzie Bennet has been at Collins & Collins for roughly six months as an editor, going to work there after her parents revealed that the money they had claimed to be saving for grad school was non-existent. Apparently, the plan had always been for her to, in her mother’s words, “go out there and get a real damn job.”

Lizzie had been best friends with Charlotte since childbirth. Working with her best friend hadn’t seemed like such a bad idea at the time.




-




CUT TO LIZZIE:

“What do I think of C&C? Ugh! [Sticks her tongue out and points to it with her figure] I absolutely hate it. I only came here because Charlotte told me to, and because I kind of needed the money, but man, I wish I had stayed home and gotten a job at a restaurant or something. Because even low-level fast food jobs would better than this hunk-of-junk.

“You’d think that editing videos for the internet would be interesting, right? Well, it could be, if we were working with material that wasn’t some of the most boring crap I’ve ever seen. Seriously, how are you supposed to make informational videos about cell phone use interesting?”

[Pause]

[Breaths heavily]

“Oh! [Shakes head] And don’t even get me started on Darcy. Oh god, that guy is like a freaking robot. All he ever does is spend his days locked up in that giant office of his, like the fact that his aunt runs the company makes him better than us. He only ever comes out every couple weeks to walk around the office and creepily look over all our shoulders. And I swear – he spends like five extra minutes on me.”

[Pause]

“Seriously – he looks at me the most. What the [BLEEP] is his problem?”




-




CUT TO DARCY:

“Ms. Bennet is one of the best employees I’ve seen here at Collins & Collins.”

[Pause]

“She shows a great talent and aptitude for… web-video editing.”

[Pause]

“Can I leave now?”




-




The party (or incident, as it has been dubbed by the guys up stairs), occurs when Lydia, C&C’s temp, overhears Ricky talking with Ms. de Bourgh while filing papers in his office.

“Yes, Ms. de Bourgh, I am looking forward to our meeting later today. Yes, I have done the research and informed Darcy of my absence. He said that he’d be fine with managing the office for the remainder of the day.”

Lydia looks up from her work and stares at him for a couple seconds, opened-mouth.

“Alright, Ms. de Bourgh. I’ll see you in an hour or so.” He hangs up the phone.

“Wait,” Lydia says, walking away from her work to stand in front of him, “you’re not going to be around today?”

“I’m afraid not. I have an incredibly crucial meeting with Ms. de Bourgh and our investors.”

“So,” Lydia starts, sitting down, “who will be in charge?”

“Well, Mr. Darcy will be formally in charge, of course, although I perceive Ms. Lu doing most of the direct management.”

Lydia smiles.




-




CUT TO LYDIA:

“It’s totally par-tay time! Am I right or am I right? It’s Friday, the boss is gonna be out, the replacement will be totes down for anything I bring up, I’m sure. Oh, this is prime party time, and guess who is gonna be organizing this bitch? It’s the Ly-Dee-Ah!”

[She giggles/screams]




-




Lydia walks into the center of the office, checking to make sure both Ricky and Darcy’s doors are closed.

“Hey party people,” she whispers. “I just wanted to let you all know that after snooze-ville in there leaves for his little meeting, we will be having a massive office ragger.”

The office remains pretty silent, although Lizzie and Jane share an is this for real? look.

“I will be heading out to the liquor store and returning once the big man has left, so that we can all get our drink on. I’ve already chatted with the boys down in the warehouse, and they said they can fix us up music style. I just need you all to go ahead and cancel whatever lame-ass plans you had, cause we’re gonna [BLEEP]ing go wild.

“Peace out, bitches.”




-




CUT TO CHARLOTTE:

[Silence]

“Officially, I don’t approve of this. I just want that on record.”






CUT TO FITZ:

“It could be fun. Might give me a chance to hang out with some awesome peeps.”






CUT TO DARCY:

“I don’t think my authority means much to these people anyway.”

[Sighs]

[Walks off camera]




-




At 4:00, Ricky sets out for his meeting. Within five minutes of his departure, Lydia has brought in two kegs of beer and a ton of vodka bottles, the warehouse has begun to set up music, and some of the other employees have started the process of decorating.

“Wow,” Fitz says to Lizzie at her desk, “this is going to be crazy. And awesome.”

“Are you serious? You think this will be fun?”

“Defiantly,” he says. “It’s co-workers getting plastered together. What could be better?”

Lizzie can think of about a thousand things (Charlotte being successful, Jane and Bing getting married, Darcy dying in a fire, etc.), but she keeps her mouth shut. Even though she has friends in the office, Fitz and Bing are the only ones she didn’t know before coming to the company; all her other buds were pre-made friends. She doesn’t really have any thought about the other people (…besides Darcy), except that most of them are really annoying and nosey, and make her have this gut feeling of hopelessness. Like this is going to be her life from now on, making informational videos and trying to make small talk about what everybody had for dinner the previous night.

It’s not horrible – she doesn’t feel like she going to claw her own eyes out or anything. It just – is there.

That’s it. That’s all her job is.

(Maybe getting drunk tonight isn’t such a bad idea.)




-




“Wow, so you’re actually going to let Lydia throw her crazy party?” Lizzie and Charlotte are in the break-room getting coffee.

Charlotte takes a sip. “I think so. It sounds like kind of a horrible idea, but on the plus side, it would boost morale.”

“And the possibility of someone here dying in a car accident.”

“Those chances are already pretty high.”

Lizzie thinks about it for a moment. “Fair enough.”

They both giggle a little, Charlotte a bit less so.

Lizzie stares at Charlotte coolly drinking her coffee. “Hey – is something wrong?”

“Nothing really,” she says, shaking her head. “It’s just, sometimes I… get the feeling Darcy doesn’t like me very much.”

“Oh, please,” Lizzie says, rolling her eyes. “Darcy doesn’t like anyone.”

“Yeah, well. I keep on getting this vibe like he wants to demote me or something.” Charlotte looks down and sighs. “I don’t know, probably me being crazy.”

She takes another big sip of her drink, before telling Lizzie she has to get back to work and leaving her to stand in the middle of the break-room, boiling with anger.




-




Lizzie barges into his office, slamming the door and sticking her figure out to him.

“Darcy,” Lizzie starts. “How dare you even consider firing Charlotte. She is one of C&C’s most dedicated employees, and spends practically all her time focused on this company.”

Darcy looks up from his work, giving Lizzie an odd look. “I am not going to fire Charlotte.”

Lizzie rolls her eyes. “Find, demote her, whatever. Are you actually going to deny that you haven’t been thinking about putting someone else in her position?”

Darcy turns his head down, away from her face. “No…”

“See, you can’t even deny that you think so low of Charlotte you’d demote her. She is your most dedicated and hardworking employee, and you’d knock her down.” Lizzie slowly shakes her head, overcome by her own anger. “How could you?”

“Please, if you’ll let me explain–”

“No,” she cuts him off. “There is no way you could possibly explain yourself out of this one.”

“Ms. Lu is one of our best workers, yes,” he starts, standing up.

“But not good enough, apparently.”

“But, she is clearly focused on other things.”

Lizzie is taken aback. “What is that supposed to me?”

“It means that Charlotte has been spending an awful lot of time looking at other jobs.”

Lizzie scoffs. “She’s just checking out similar companies around the area for the future.”

“Lizzie,” he snaps, “she’s looking for other jobs, she’s letting the temp throw parties”

“She’s just letting the office have some fun.”

“She is sending a message,” he says, exasperated. “I am sorry if Ricky isn’t keen enough to pick up on it, but I am.”

They stand there for a couple seconds, both a little surprised by the turn of events. He sits down after a moment, and looks down at one of his papers, trying to distract himself from how awkward it all feels. Lizzie just stands there, hopeless, her eyes filled with tears.

After another moment of silence, he speaks.

“Once it was free, I was… going to offer the position to you, actually.”

Lizzie almost lets out a gasp, letting a tear fall down her cheek. After a second, however, she slowly shakes her head, and turns for the door. “You’re the last person I’d ever take a job from.”

Lizzie slams the door as she leaves. It’s louder this time.




-




6: 45; lights get turned down, loud music starts playing, drinks are served.

Shit starts happening.




-




Lizzie wishes she could say she’s a little surprised at her co-workers willingness to just drop all their work and plans, and spend the night partying. But then, if she wanted to be surprised in her life she wouldn’t be working for Collins & Collins.

Overall, she’s not even that upset about the party. No, she wasn’t crazy about the idea as a concept, but her friends seem to be having an alright time, so where’s the harm? Charlotte, who really does care to much about work, is over by the keg, talking to some cute guy (does he work here?) and probably getting plastered for the first time in far too long. Jane is in a corner with Bing, nursing a drink and making flirty eyes with him. Fitz is standing at the receptionist desk, chatting up one of the cuter warehouse guys. Fuck, even Caroline, who Lizzie can tell thinks incredibly little of the entire office, has been dancing with one of Lizzie’s co-workers (okay, that guy defiantly works here – she just doesn’t know his name), and clearly having a great time.

Darcy is nowhere to be found. Shocker.

Lizzie herself is still sitting at her computer, trying to get some work finished up before getting into the groove of the party. She is eyeing one of the big bottles of tequila (because Lydia has got several), when her e-mail lights up

Lizzie goes into her e-mails to find that Darcy, of all people, has written her a giant message.

(Prick. What kind of person sends an e-mail to someone in the same building as them? Fuck, on the same floor.)

Dear Ms. Bennet,

I know the chances of you reading this are slim – and quite frankly, I don’t blame you. Our altercation earlier today was unpleasant, especially because (and I’m not proud of this) you were almost completely in the right. However, if you could please do me the courtesy of reading this e-mail, I think you’ll find that my actions, while not excusable, are also not without merit.

First, let me make one thing clear; I do not, nor have I ever, thought Ms. Lu was an insufficient or lazy worker. She is one of our best and brightest, and I happily acknowledge that. Over the past couple weeks, however, I have noticed her checking out other jobs of a similar nature in the area, and believed that the only conclusion could be that she was thinking of leaving us. Because of this, I did consider demoting her from her current position. I am not proud of this, and feel I should make it known that it is very unlikely that I would have gone through with it at all. Now I most certainly won’t.

Now, when you barged into my office earlier today, I was not completely sure what I was going to do. When you began yelling, I let things escalate, and I am truly sorry for that. Many of the things I said were not completely true, and were only ever spoken in the heat of the moment.

I hope you can, if not forgive, at least understand my actions. Please know that had I known of Charlotte’s intensions, I would not have considered demoting her for a moment, and that if I alluded to anything to the contrary in our meeting, it was only because I was angry, not with you so much as myself.

Yours sincerely, William Darcy.


Lizzie looks over to his office. The blinds are closed.




-




CUT TO LIZZIE:

[Silence]

“I… might have been a little wrong about Darcy.”

[Pause]

[She looks over to his office]

[To herself] “You know what, actually.”

[Walks out of the shot and into Darcy’s office.]




-




Lizzie walks into Darcy’s office.

“Hey, Darcy, um…” She stands there for a couple nervous seconds. “I wanted to apologize, for everything I said to you. Your e-mail… explained everything. Or, most things.”

Darcy gives a little smile, before turning his head down. “You don’t have to be all that sorry. I was kind of a dick.”

Lizzie smiles at that, laughing just a little bit.

“We both suck,” she says.

“Yes we do.”

She slightly nods her head, quietly saying okay a couple times.

“Hey. Do you, um… Do you want to get drunk?”




-




CUT TO CHARLOTTE:

“This was a great idea on Lydia’s part.”

[Stares at guy off to the side]

“Just a really great idea.”






CUT TO JANE:

“You know I didn’t think much of the idea when Lydia brought it up, but Bing’s great.

[Pause]

“IT’S great, it! I meant the party. Not that I don’t think Bing is great, because he is. Bing’s amazing, he’s the best. I was just talking about the party before, but I said Bing by accident.

[Pause]

“But, yeah, Bing is so great.”






CUT TO LYDIA:

“Wooh! Best party ever!! Shots anyone?

[Everyone cheers]




-




Lizzie and Darcy are sitting on the floor of his office, their backs pushed up against the wall. They’ve been drinking the bottle of tequila (because she did end up going for it) for about forty-five minutes, and are like eighty percent done. Lizzie’s debating what they’re going to do when they finish.

(She doesn’t know this, but Darcy actually has a stash of drinks in one of his lower desk drawers. This was done by Bing and Fitz as a way to make them feel superior to the other employees. “We share a secret with the boss-man”, they said. “We’re special.”)

They’ve been talking, or trying to, for the entire forty-five minutes. After the initial awkwardness of choosing to get plastered together and starting things up, everything has gone pretty smooth. They have times where they go on for long period talking about one subject, and others where they only say a few words.

“I’m sorry I barged into your office,” she says.

“S’okay. I’m sorry I pretended to demote Charlotte.”

Lizzie twists her mouth into a kind of smile. “You weren’t pretending.”

He blinks at her a bit, taking a large sip of the bottle and passing it back to her. “Yeah, well. I wouldn’t have done, in the end. I was just… entertaining the idea. I wouldn’t have fired your best friend.”

Lizzie takes a big sip, and starts staring at her legs, how smooth and long they are.

“I didn’t mean,” he starts, squinting his face and rubbing his forehead, as though he never says anything that bad and it’s really frustrating him. (She not sure if she believes this though; he’s a little too awkward to never say things that dumb.) “I don’t mean I wouldn’t fire her just because she’s your friend. I won’t fire her because she’s a smart and intuitive and hard worker. Her being your best friend is just…” he stops, and stares at her legs, “a plus.”

Lizzie takes another swing of the drink, turning it into her chest when she’s done and holding it against her body for a second. He stares at her for a couple more minutes, his eyes trailing over her entire body, before consciously turning away and looking about the room.

“So,” she says, letting go of the bottle and handing it so him, “the fact that Charlotte is my friend is a point in her corner?”

“Yeah,” he says, taking the bottle and having big sip. “It is.” He looks at her, a tiny little opened mouth smile on his lips. He stares into her eyes, deeply, and for a second she feels like he knows her just a little bit better than anyone else in the world. He hands her back the bottle.

He looks away. “Do you, um,” he starts, blushing. “Do you have a boyfriend?”

Her heart beats a little bit harder. She goes for the bottle.

It’s empty.




-




It’s 10: 30. The party is still in full swing, though it’s gone off the rails a little bit. Jane and Bing are making out, Charlotte is dancing with some cute guy, Fitz and warehouse-dude are nowhere to be found.

Lydia’s gone and turned up the music, repeatedly flashing the lights whenever she feels like it. The rest of the party doesn’t seem the mind.

Lizzie and Darcy are still in his office.




-




CUT TO CAROLINE:

“You know, I’m not usually a fan of coming to the office, because it’s dull and smelly and all, but it’s actually been pretty okay tonight.”

[Takes a sip of drink]

[Watches as man walks by]

[Smiles at guy]

“Totally okay with it.”






CUT TO BING:

“Oh man, I just love this office so much! The people are so incredible and wonderful and just, awesome, all-around.”

[Pause as someone speaks off-screen]

“Jane, oh… Jane is just like the best person ever. Seriously, I don’t know if I’ve ever met someone as caring and sweet and good natured as Jane.”

[Pause]

“Can I go back to Jane now?”




-




“I think the camera crew is trying to see us through the blinds.”

By this point, Lizzie and Darcy have gone and opened his drawer. They’re sharing a bottle of expensive wine.

“Then go turn off the lights,” Lizzie says to him, taking the bottle and biting her lower lip.

Darcy looks down and blushes, slowly standing up and walking over to the light switch. A second later, the room is pitch black.

“I can’t see.”

Lizzie laughs. “Follow the sound of my voice,” she says in a mock Darth-Vader voice.

He gives her a little laugh, feeling his way around the room and sitting down next to her.

They’re both pretty buzzed, to the point where they’re saying just about anything. So what he asks next isn’t exactly that random.

“Hey, um… why don’t you like me?”

Lizzie looks up from the drink and stares at him. “I… I like you.”

“No you don’t,” he says, sheepishly looking down, “or you didn’t until I sent you that e-mail. I know I’m not… always the nicest guy, but in the office today it seemed like you… really didn’t like me.”

“You were kind of threatening to fire my best friend.”

“Yeah, but beside that,” he says, raising an eyebrow. “You already didn’t like me. Why?”

Lizzie looks off to the side, taking another swing of the bottle and breathing deeply. “It was just, you know, little things. Like you staying in your office all the time, and being all robot-like.”

Darcy takes the bottle from her and takes a sip. He cocks his head. “That’s it?”

“Well, all that, and the fact that you’re a massive hipster.”

At this, Darcy lets his jaw drop and looks taken about. “I am not a hipster.”

“Darcy, at the company Halloween party, you told me that your personal speaker preference was for a ‘vintage gramophone type of sound’ because they ‘provide a more authentic and rustic feel’.”

Darcy smiles, a look of mock-insult of his face. “Well, they do.”

They both bust out laughing.

Lizzie takes the drink back from Darcy, swirling it around a bit before taking another sip. She smiles into the liquid, staring at the way it moves, before tentatively looking back up at him. Then, after a beat-

“You also looked over my shoulder more than anyone else in the office.”

Darcy stares down into his lap. “I did it cause I like you.”

Lizzie looks off to the side, trying to hide her smile. “Yeah?”

“Yeah,” Darcy whispers.



-




They fuck on his office floor.

They wait until they’ve both sobered up just a little bit – not completely, because there is no way you’d find them doing that while not drunk – but just enough so that they’re not falling over themselves. They can comprehend what’s going on – know to be just a little bit quiet, snag a condom – but they also don’t really at all. Lizzie can’t quite believe that she’s having sex with Darcy – and yet, it all makes complete sense somehow. Like, once the initial shock wears off (which doesn’t even really pertain to what they’re doing, but more that she wants it), everything just kind of fits together, like it was always meant to be. In this weird way she can see that it was always going to happen, they were always heading towards this. There is this general feeling of finally, and yet, she never wanted it until a couple hours ago.

She’d never even thought about it. Not seriously, and not with any pleasure.

When they kiss for the first time, they’re sitting up on their knees. It’s later now – she doesn’t know what time specifically, but it is pretty late – and the room is pitch-black, or it would be if they hadn’t been hanging out in it for so long. She can hear music from the other room, and it suddenly just becomes too much – they’re on their knees and it’s all dark and they’re just too fucking close, because they are close, like really.

Their lips touch, and they just kind of fall into it. She cups his face and tugs at his shirt, he squeezes her ass. He lays her down on the carpet and pushes some of the hair out of her face, and then her heart beats really fast for just a second, and she wonders if maybe she might love him. Which is ridiculous, because she’s so used to hating him, and because you don’t just fall in love with people after one night of conversation and a kiss. Or she doesn’t. But there’s this feeling tugging at her heart strings, and it’s good and pure and filled with something she can only assume is love, because it feels like love. Or maybe it’s telling her that she should love him or will love him, or something like that. The feeling only lasts for a couple seconds – because now he’s kissing her harder and she’s going for his belt and wishing for him to consume her.

And then they fuck. He thrusts into her and she moans and they go from there, all messy and what-not. It’s more affectionate than she would have expected – there is a level of aggression to it, but it’s certainly not hate sex, or anything like it. There’s an odd tenderness mixed in with desperation, and at times it almost feels like love-making (which it’s not – she won’t deny that it might one day happen, but this certainly isn’t it).

They come in unison. This somehow surprises no one.




-




By the time they’ve returned back to the party, things have gotten a little out of control. Everyone has gone completely crazy, standing on the desks and hanging off chairs. There are empty bottles and crimpled up pieces of paper all over the floor, and it suddenly occurs to Lizzie that there is absolutely no way Ricky won’t find out about this.

“Good lord,” Darcy says as they stare around at the room, “it’s like a tornado.”

“A really, really dangerous tornado.”

“Yes.”

“Well, um,” Lizzie says, turning towards Darcy, “I guess I should probably go and find Charlotte and Jane. And Lydia.”

Darcy turns to her and puts his hand to his hair. “Oh, um, yeah. I need to go find Fitz and Bing, too.”

“Yeah.”

“I’ll… call you.” He says it like it’s a question, standing up a little straighter when he says it and waiting to see what she says.

Lizzie smiles. “Yeah. Um… good.”

“Good.”

He gives her another smile, before turning around and walking off into the warehouse, in search of Fitz. Lizzie stays in her spot for a moment, watching the area where he left from for a second, and then taking the party area in once again. It’s defiantly calmed down a bit, which she thinks is a plus (but not calm as in actually calm; calm as in most everyone’s passed out drunk.) Jane is likely still conscious, though Lizzie’s can’t guess how tangled up in Bing she is (if this night has taught her anything, it is not to underestimate co-workers capacity for fucking in their office). Charlotte most certainly is puking in the bathroom or making out with that one guy. From the sound of her shouting, Lizzie can guess that Lydia is still up and kicking.

“Best night ever or best night ever? Totes best night ever, my peeps!”




-




CUT TO DARCY:

“Ms. Bennet, um… Lizzie. She’s… she’s great. Real, um, go-getter.”

[Smiles]

[Pause as someone speaks off-screen]

“I think so. I hope so. I mean… we’ll see where things go.”






CUT TO LIZZIE:

“Yes – I was completely wrong about Darcy. I mean he’s not a saint or anything, but he’s… he’s alright.”

[Smiles at camera, then looks away]

“Darcy is… um… yeah. He’s good. Nice, you know.”

[Pause as someone speaks off-screen]

“Oh, we just mostly talked, you know, that kind of thing.”

[Pause as someone speaks off-screen]

“Friends, um… yeah, I mean, I guess.”

[Laughs]

“I wouldn’t call us strictly friends, exactly…”

[Pause]

“You could say we’re… going somewhere.”




-




[END CREDITS]




-


Tags: fandom: the lizzie bennet diaries, media: fic
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