You are viewing wordybee

Community Fanfic - Jeff/Annie - "Years"

« previous entry | next entry »
Jan. 31st, 2011 | 12:41 pm

Title: Years
Author: wordybee
Spoilers:  None.
Rating: G
Warning: None.
Word Count: 846
Disclaimer: I don't own Community

Summary: All they know is the years they’ve shared, not the ones between them.

            When they go on their first date, she is twenty-two and he is thirty-four. Jeff had amended his celebratory reservation-for-one at Mori Steakhouse to a reservation for two, and they toast to the end of Greendale Community College together. They talk about the past, about the future, about the rest of the group, and about themselves. They verbally skirt around the fact that this is a date, but Jeff’s eyes give away more than happiness for graduation, and Annie can’t quite keep the smile off her face the whole night. Even when she notices that people around the restaurant are looking at them with eyes that ask Is she his daughter or his mistress? she keeps smiling.

            When she is twenty-seven and he is thirty-nine, people seem to notice less. This is mostly because Jeff at thirty-nine looks very much like Jeff at thirty-four, save for a few more wrinkles around the eyes, and Annie looks her age. They sit in the same restaurant they’d celebrated their graduation (and their first date) in five years ago, but they hold hands across the table as they eat and there is no awkward nervousness as they chat about their thoughts. The gold bands around their fingers answer any questions onlookers might possess. Annie is still smiling.

            When she is thirty-four and he is forty-six, Jeff still refuses to age like a normal human being and Annie is too involved in corralling three energetic children to notice any stares from passers-by. Jeff jokingly tells their oldest son that he’ll be as tall as his mother in a couple months (he takes after his father in too many ways), and Annie swats at his arm before rushing off to keep the youngest from climbing on a clothing display. He reaches the top of it before his mother can get to him and Jeff gives him a thumbs-up while Annie picks him off the clothing rack and plants him back on the ground, glaring at her husband and muttering I’m never taking you shopping with us again even while she fights the smile that threatens to break through. Both of her sons take after their father in too many ways.

            When she is forty-four and he is fifty-six, they look like any other proud parents on their son’s graduation day. Annie has to pull her son down to her level in order to hug him, with his diploma in hand and his cap knocked askew in the motion. Jeff proudly pats his son on the back and Annie can tell he’s trying his hardest not to get too emotional but there are tears in his eyes (which are surrounded by many more wrinkles, and Jeff had stopped dyeing his hair, but so had Annie so they were equally grayed and aged, she thought). Annie doesn’t fight her smile, even through her tears of pride and nostalgia that her little boy was all grown up, and soon her little girl would be, and her other little boy, and she pulls her son down to hug him again.

            When she is sixty and he is seventy-two, the age difference has become a joke more than anything. At his retirement party (you would think Jeff Winger would have retired at the soonest possible moment, but something in him wanted to keep going and Annie suspects it might’ve been her influence that did it) Jeff shakes hands with a young man connected with the law firm in some way and says, Jeff Winger, Retiree, by way of introduction, before pulling Annie to his side and – all sardonic and straight-faced – saying, And this is Annie, my child-bride. Annie rolls her eyes and smiles at her husband, who never lost his dry sense of humor but had stopped trying to seem self-important and narcissistic in his old age.

            When she is sixty-eight and he is eighty, they have forgotten that the age difference ever even existed. All they know is the years they’ve shared, not the ones between them. As they sit in their favorite diner around the corner from their home they hold hands across the table like they used to do when they were young and newly wed, their comfort with each other as obvious as the day. They try to ignore the people around them, just as they had back then, but this time the onlookers glance at them and their eyes say What a sweet couple. Annie feels like she’s been smiling non-stop for decades, now.

            When she is seventy-one and Jeff is gone she remembers for the first time, in what feels like forever, the difference in their ages. But she also remembers the years they’ve had together, the family they loved (three children, seven grandchildren), the life they lived, and she knows that for all the reservations they’d had about their ages, for all the worry and notice of what others around them had seen, it had never truly mattered. It didn’t matter now, either, because Annie knew the distance between them would soon be gone again.

           
            When she slept, she smiled.




Link | Leave a comment | Add to Memories | Share

Comments {36}

Stefanny

(no subject)

from: bellakitse
date: Jan. 31st, 2011 06:26 pm (UTC)
Link

This is one of the sweetest most heartwarming story I've read in a LONG time. Beautiful.

Reply | Thread

wordybee

(no subject)

from: wordybee
date: Jan. 31st, 2011 09:04 pm (UTC)
Link

I was so worried about this fic (there don't really seem to be a lot of futurefics in this fandom, and especially not ones that go THIS far in the future) so I'm absolutely giddy that it's gotten such good responses from people!

Thanks!

Reply | Parent | Thread

Stefanny

(no subject)

from: bellakitse
date: Feb. 1st, 2011 12:49 am (UTC)
Link

no reason for the worry this was wonderful I love how the age thing became a joke between them. I've always found it silly because my most loving relationship was with a man 20 years older then me and we joked about the way people saw us all the time.

Reply | Parent | Thread

thelxiepia

(no subject)

from: thelxiepia
date: Jan. 31st, 2011 07:25 pm (UTC)
Link

Oh this is so beautiful. I love it so much. :)

Reply | Thread

wordybee

(no subject)

from: wordybee
date: Jan. 31st, 2011 09:04 pm (UTC)
Link

I'm glad you like it. (:

Thanks for the comment! It's much appreciated.

Reply | Parent | Thread

kiwifashionista

(no subject)

from: kiwifashionista
date: Jan. 31st, 2011 07:32 pm (UTC)
Link

beautiful, just beautiful

Reply | Thread

wordybee

(no subject)

from: wordybee
date: Jan. 31st, 2011 09:05 pm (UTC)
Link

Thank you!

Reply | Parent | Thread

(no subject)

from: anonymous
date: Jan. 31st, 2011 08:37 pm (UTC)
Link

Hey I found this through the milady_milord group, and though I'm a lurker there, I just had to comment on how lovely your work is! I'm 24 and my fiance is 39 (we got together when I was 21), so J/A and your fic in particular really pulls at my heartstrings and makes me smile.

Reply | Thread

wordybee

(no subject)

from: wordybee
date: Jan. 31st, 2011 09:08 pm (UTC)
Link

I'm not sure if you'll ever come back to this page to read this reply, but I'm going to write it anyways:

I hope you join the community officially! You're what we want, you know. You have an insider's viewpoint on things that people say about Jeff/Annie, and I'm sure everyone would love your input!

I'm glad that you liked my fic, and thanks very much for the comment. I love making people smile and tugging at heartstrings. (:

Reply | Parent | Thread

(no subject)

from: anonymous
date: Jan. 31st, 2011 10:11 pm (UTC)
Link

Thanks for your reply!

If there were a way of joining the community without making a livejournal account, I totally would! Even though I don't write fic or make vids or mixes, the whole J/A pairing really speaks to my own experiences. My fiance and I met in university when I was 18 and getting my BA (he was 33 getting his doctorate); we were friends for years before getting together.

In terms of J/A, I'm not sure how much insight I could provide besides the fact that age really isn't an issue at all--it's much more about being at similar stages in life. In Jeff/Annie's case it's about coming to Greendale and having to start over from scratch, reconciling old identities (lawyer!Jeff/little Annie Adderall) with new and growing together.

Reply | Parent | Thread

wordybee

(no subject)

from: wordybee
date: Jan. 31st, 2011 10:21 pm (UTC)
Link

Is there any reason in particular you don't want to make a Livejournal account?

And you don't need to write fic or make videos to be a part of the community. Just discussing things and replying to people is enough, usually. And you might have an idea for something that someone could use, which is always a good way to contribute to the community (it's always good to get an injection of new ideas, or else the fanfic pool will run dry and we don't want that).

It seems like you've pretty much lived what Jeff/Annie fans think our favorite couple will live! That's so interesting.

And the insight on age is really what we like people talking about, I think. So many people - from non-J/A fans to even Dan Harmon himself - see Jeff and Annie's age gap as this creepy thing and it's unfortunate. But your idea on how it's more about where two people are life-wise at any given point in time, and not about their actual ages, is a good one, and if people would only understand that I think the fandom would be even bigger than it already is!

Anyhow, I'm pretty sure that most of the places you'll find in the community are anonymous-friendly, so you don't have to get a livejournal or anything to be a part of it. Just jumping in with your two cents should probably be enough. (:

Reply | Parent | Thread

(no subject)

from: anonymous
date: Jan. 31st, 2011 10:43 pm (UTC)
Link

I actually had an LJ account way back in the day (like nearly a decade ago) and had some bad experiences with it (i.e. the hacking and spreading of embarrassing high school secrets), so I'm pretty gun-shy about the whole thing. I've tried to post/comment in the m_m community once or twice, but anon commenting is disabled. (Feel free to post any of my comments there if you think others would be interested.)

But in my experience it really is much more about life-stage than age as a number. It would be totally different if, for example, my fiance had ever been married before or had kids (especially if they were ::shudder:: near my age). As it was, we had both been on our own for a number of years (I went to boarding school at 14, so like Annie I was a bit more independent than the average 18 year-old) and had had a few relationships by the time we got together. Also, we ran in the same social circles, so it was never especially weird among our friends. It does seem like the writers are setting up a similar situation for Jeff and Annie, which gives me hope that they will ultimately be the end-game couple. :-D

Reply | Parent | Thread

wordybee

(no subject)

from: wordybee
date: Jan. 31st, 2011 11:40 pm (UTC)
Link

Ah, well, I only really use my LJ for fandom-related things. You could do the same, perhaps?

And anon commenting used to be enabled, I swear. Pity that it's not anymore.

And yeah, I totally get it about the life-stage thing. I think the same way (though I've never actually been in a relationship, at all, so god only knows what's going to happen with me) and here's hoping that Jeff/Annie will be the end-game! It would be such an interesting TV couple and would completely throw people for a loop, which is usually what Community tries to do. Even if they're not the big ending couple, though, they've really given us fans a lot to work with and appreciate.

Reply | Parent | Thread

fangirl_101

(no subject)

from: fangirl_101
date: Jan. 31st, 2011 08:46 pm (UTC)
Link

This is so beautifully well-written and heartwarming. Just lovely. I was smiling the whole time, even at the bittersweet ending. One of the best fics I've read in a very long time. Thank you for sharing :)

Reply | Thread

wordybee

(no subject)

from: wordybee
date: Jan. 31st, 2011 09:10 pm (UTC)
Link

One of the best fics I've read in a very long time.

Wow, you have no idea how happy it made me to read that. I said in an earlier comment reply that I was really nervous about how this fic would be received, so this just makes my day.

Thank you so much for the comment! (:

Reply | Parent | Thread

songandsilence

(no subject)

from: songandsilence
date: Jan. 31st, 2011 11:32 pm (UTC)
Link

I think I love this a little bit too much.

Reply | Thread

wordybee

(no subject)

from: wordybee
date: Jan. 31st, 2011 11:40 pm (UTC)
Link

Totally okay with that! :'D

Reply | Parent | Thread

wallows

(no subject)

from: wallows
date: Feb. 1st, 2011 01:25 am (UTC)
Link

you totally made me cry...and sad that I do not sleep smiling. sigh.

Reply | Thread

wordybee

(no subject)

from: wordybee
date: Feb. 3rd, 2011 06:30 pm (UTC)
Link

To be honest, I don't sleep smiling, either. But I have hope that I will in the future!

Thanks for the read and comment. (:

Reply | Parent | Thread

Carly

(no subject)

from: _carly_
date: Feb. 1st, 2011 03:06 am (UTC)
Link

I legit teared up reading the last paragraph. I knew it was coming but the bittersweetness of it all got to me! I loved reading about their life together, and I really loved that Jeff amended his restaurant booking for a table for two for their "date". Aw.

Reply | Thread

wordybee

(no subject)

from: wordybee
date: Feb. 3rd, 2011 06:31 pm (UTC)
Link

The reaction I wanted was something along the teary lines, so as much as I should be sorry for making people cry, I'm not! :B

I'm glad you liked it, and I'm glad you commented!

Reply | Parent | Thread

(no subject)

from: anonymous
date: Feb. 1st, 2011 01:59 pm (UTC)
Link

This was just so brilliant and poignant. I love the beginning of each part where you put their ages and that last one where "Jeff is gone" choked me up a bit, I have to confess. Reminds a little of Old Love by Jeffrey Archer, that same sense of bittersweetness. Bravo and thanks for sharing!

Reply | Thread

wordybee

(no subject)

from: wordybee
date: Feb. 3rd, 2011 06:32 pm (UTC)
Link

Thanks for the comment!

Reply | Parent | Thread

judykim97

(no subject)

from: judykim97
date: Feb. 2nd, 2011 05:18 pm (UTC)
Link

Wow. This was just... ... I really loved this! It was so sweet and wonderful and beautiful and touching. Thank you for posting this. :)

Reply | Thread

wordybee

(no subject)

from: wordybee
date: Feb. 3rd, 2011 06:29 pm (UTC)
Link

Thank you for commenting.

I'm so glad you liked it. I'm glad this fic was as successful as it seems to be, because I think I was the most worried about posting this one out of any fics I've ever posted. So, yay! (:

Reply | Parent | Thread

sani

(no subject)

from: sanaazzy
date: Feb. 3rd, 2011 12:14 am (UTC)
Link

I was all teary eyed when I got to the middle, and full on tears when I got to the end. I knew what was coming but I couldn't help it, so damn beautiful, and heart-warming. And it's written so well... *sniffs*
Kudos m'dear :)

Reply | Thread

wordybee

(no subject)

from: wordybee
date: Feb. 3rd, 2011 06:28 pm (UTC)
Link

I just want to thank you for commenting on this fic as well as a few of my others. It was so nice waking up and seeing so many good things! Really brightened my morning, so thank you. (:

Reply | Parent | Thread

LunaMystik

(no subject)

from: lunamystik
date: Feb. 5th, 2011 03:49 pm (UTC)
Link

Tears in my eyes - this was beautiful!

Reply | Thread

jean-ralphio! dance up on me!

(no subject)

from: thebadunkadunk
date: Feb. 5th, 2011 11:00 pm (UTC)
Link

Wow, so beautiful and powerful and moving. I hope you continue writing more!

Reply | Thread

and i will lead them on a merry chase

(no subject)

from: build_the_moon
date: Feb. 15th, 2011 04:49 am (UTC)
Link

This was so sad but so wonderful.

<3

Reply | Thread

Jessica

(no subject)

from: musicandhistory
date: Dec. 20th, 2011 04:42 am (UTC)
Link

I found this story through the M/M fic recommendation, and I'm so glad I did! It was beautiful. I know the age thing is an issue for a lot of people, but I don't think it's that big of a deal. According to the episode "Political Science," Jeff was "like 19" in 1997 when he sent his audition tape to The Real World, so that would only put about 12 or 13 years between them. That's not so bad. Jeff and Annie remind me of my other favorite TV couple, Josh and Donna from The West Wing, who also had a bit of an age difference between them.
Anyway, all that to say, I love the way you handled age in this story. It was so thoughtful and sweet. Well done!

Reply | Thread

(no subject)

from: anonymous
date: Mar. 12th, 2013 11:27 am (UTC)
Link

Everything is Jeff/Annie and nothing hurts...

Except this fic. Ow. OW. Beautiful. OW.

Reply | Thread

wordybee

(no subject)

from: wordybee
date: Mar. 14th, 2013 08:25 pm (UTC)
Link

Thank you.

I'm really glad people are still reading this fic, apparently!

Reply | Parent | Thread

Yep, still reading

from: vainhopes
date: May. 26th, 2013 06:39 pm (UTC)
Link

I was just going to start a new comment...but figured this one would be apropos.

I'm fairly new to the Community fandom, but quickly, and surprisingly became a J/A shipper. This isn't the first time I've read this, but I didn't have a LJ account, so I didn't comment.

This is pure beauty. The end made me sad, but in a bittersweet way. And I disagree with the first part, but only in that I already think the relative age difference has narrowed to the point that if *I* saw them at a restaurant, I wouldn't think twice. It worked in the story as a necessary literary device though. If you hadn't put it in for the first entry, you wouldn't be able to point out later on how it no longer mattered.

This is the endgame I want for Jeff/Annie...even if we don't see it in the show, I want it to end on a note where we just "know" that this is how it will go. A long and happy life for them together. I'm a bit of a sap though.

Reply | Parent | Thread

wordybee

Re: Yep, still reading

from: wordybee
date: May. 26th, 2013 06:47 pm (UTC)
Link

I've reached the point where, regardless of what we see on the show, they're getting together in my head. I might be slightly delusional in that regard, but it's a fun delusion and I enjoy it. :)

Things I also enjoy: getting nice comments on this fic, so thank you.

(Also: saps, unite!)

Reply | Parent | Thread

Re: Yep, still reading

from: vainhopes
date: May. 26th, 2013 06:55 pm (UTC)
Link

re: head canon...I might be RIGHT there with you.

I've mentioned it a billion times, so it may be like a broken record, but I also don't have a list of who may have seen it/not seen it, so here goes. This ship is the only ship I've ever shipped. I've NEVER sought out fan fic for anything before, and I doubt I will ever again. J/A is important to me for some unfathomable reason...so I deeply want them to get together on the show, but even if they don't, I'll always have the stories that some of the talented writers (including you) have been able to create.

My wife asked me last night why *I* don't write fanfic, since we're both nuts about these two, and (explanabrag time) I've got a reputation as a good "writer." (note, not author...as I'll explain.) I pointed out to her that I can do academic/scholarly/professional stuff...no problem. That involves facts and analysis. I can't do a story to save my life. It'd be full of Mary Sue's all over the place.

So, to you, and all others like you, who actually have the gift and talent to CREATE, thank you.

Reply | Parent | Thread