Title: Exasperation
Fandom: The Office
Character(s): Michael Scott, Creed Bratton.
Rating: T, for safety
Spoilers: Takes place shortly after "Frame Toby"
Warning(s): None, not slash.
Summary: Michael's still pretty desperate to get a certain someone out of the office.
Author's Notes: Another challenge fic... that got too long so I couldn't post it on the office community on LJ! Ah well... the prompt was: "I thought that was a joke" xD I asked my friend for a pairing, any pairing, that I could do this on... and she said Michael/Creed, lol... so I just did a simple fanfic that involves Michael and Creed to save people the nightmares and mental images (oh, irony. I bet I just gave them to you, didn't I? XD). Anyway, please enjoy.

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Exasperation

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Michael navigated as casually as he could through the office, his expression strangely grave. He was looking for one person in particular, and seeing as it was lunch, he made a beeline for the break room. He could hear Kelly loudly scolding Ryan for trading in his convertible for his old car, which the used car dealer still hadn't sold since he had gone to New York. She was telling him about how hot they would've looked driving through Scranton… with their twin baby girls in the backseat. Michael could faintly hear the voices of Jim, Andy, and Kevin, as well, but it didn't matter what they were saying because as soon as he entered the room, they all went silent. Except for Kelly, who prattled on about her bright and happy future with Ryan. Michael felt like sulking.

But instead he squeezed past the few tables back to a far one where a figure sat reading a newspaper. Sliding into a chair across from him, Michael cleared his throat and blankly tried to attract the other man's attention. He only, really, ended up receiving a strange look from Andy. But then, eventually, they all went back to their conversations. Football or money or something. Michael wasn't really paying attention—there were serious matters at hand.

"Hello Creed…" Michael started with a scholarly sort of tone, then he dropped his voice to a low whisper, eying the others in the room carefully, "you look like the kind of guy that would know where another guy could find an assassin here in Scranton. Am I right? Or perhaps, I don't know, a hitman? Because I really, really am in need of somebody who can help me get rid of somebody else. For good."

Creed lowered the paper and gave Michael a blank expression, his usual appearance of being relaxed and relatively unworried. The nod Michael received was slow, but very confident as he appeared to be envisioning such a person that the other man was describing.

"I know a guy," Creed confirmed, and then added with a little bit of pride, "I know a couple of guys. It all depends on what kind of job you want to have done."

Michael sighed. That was far too complicated than it needed to be. Was his request not direct enough? Michael had thought it was rather self-explanatory. Gah…

"Look, I just want to… terrorize somebody a bit… maybe not physically harm them, although that would be exciting, but to send very small, but meaningful threats in the hopes of making them permanently… go away. You know?"

"Ooh, yeah, most definitely. I could arrange that. I could be your man if it's something like that that you want done. I just can't risk another run in with the police over something felony-related, you understand?"

"You could? Ah, no, no, you shouldn't… that would not be good… the person I need can't really be directly affiliated with the company… or me." Creed waved off his worry, going about his usual way of appearing wiser and more helpful than he really was.

"Michael, Michael… nobody would need to know." There was a sense of urgency in his voice. "Now who is the bastard that you want scared out of here?"

"I, well, he's… brownish-red-haired, and… I can't really give all that good of a description because I try not to associate with him like… ever, but some would say that he is a real terrible and unfair person with sad, droopy eyes. He's probably a murderer, too. I've been saying it for years. Literally, he's just a…killer of joy. He's terrible."

"Alright. So what do you want me to do? Slash his tires? Rob his wallet? Follow him home? Scare him out of town?"

"Uh… yes to the first, no to the second and third, and… fourth is what I'm going for, but… you know what Creed, never mind. I'd forgotten to properly assess how creepy you are before coming over here… Just forget about it okay, I'm just joking with you."

Michael left. Creed went back to reading his paper as though nothing had happened.

-~-

"Hey everyone," Toby called out, emerging from the annex the very next day to address the other Dunder Mifflin employees. "I'm going to be holding my first HR meeting since my return in just a couple of minutes here. So I'd really like it if you'd all join me in the conference room—" Michael couldn't help but overhear, of course, and naturally, he couldn't help but interject.

"What? No. No, there is nothing to discuss with you. Nothing has changed at all since you left, so why don't you just leave us all alone and go back to moping in the back with Kelly?"

"Michael, I apologize… but unfortunately David Wallace called earlier and told me that he'd like me to readdress the topic of office relationships."

"That is completely unnecessary, Toby. Haven't you ever heard of lets not and say we did? Go back to your desk…"

"I'm sorry, Michael, but it's apart of my job… plus I haven't gotten to talk with anybody in a while, you know?" Toby turned back to everyone else and smiled. "The meeting is still on, everybody."

The employees began to file into the small conference room. Michael opted to skip the meeting, but Toby wouldn't let him, so he went in and made a point of sitting next to Creed.

"What are you doing?!" Michael asked the older man with irritation. Talking helped to drown out Toby's voice.

"What do you mean?"

"Why is he still here?! I thought I told you to deal with him yesterday…"

"Why is who still here?" Creed looked confused, but not overly concerned.

"Sad droopy eyes, brownish-red hair—murderer!" Michael was beginning to make large, pointed gestures toward Toby who was beginning to read from the HR binder. Michael continued despite Toby's attempts to get their attention. "Apparently, you did not keep your word, my friend. You did not hold up your end of the deal."

"Ohhhh, that?" Creed suddenly remembered and he returned to appearing nonchalant again. It frustrated Michael a little; couldn't the man see that he was desperate and serious about this matter?! "I thought that was a joke."

"Did I say that it was a joke, Creed?" Michael rose to his feet and gave a small gesture of exasperation. "God, I hate it when people go and assume these types of things… now Toby's going to be here forever. He's going to make my life miserable…!"

The HR rep, along with all of the other employees, had gone silent, and was watching Michael as he walked melodramatically out of the meeting. There was a long silence as they all listened to Michael slam the door to his office, and Toby had to struggle to start up again, trying to find where he had left off in the binder. Creed suddenly became hard in thought after this, though, and began to speculate…

"Toby?" He glanced around the conference room inquisitively, craning his neck to see around Meredith and Kevin at the others around him.. "Wait… which one of you is Toby?"