Author's Note: I wrote this a while back, just getting it posted now.


The crisp autumn air pricked at her skin as she walked to the car with Jim after work, chilling her to the very core. The leaves on the trees were changing color, and then they'd swirl gently to the ground, waiting to be crunched under foot by the people walking along by. Or, in a brilliant display of crackling flame, be burned, leaving the air smelling faintly of ash and burn. Had they banned that? She could never remember. Soon, she knew, the skies would open up, and snow would gently fall to the ground, smothering what was left of the leaves, turning the hills and valleys into a glacial winter wonderland. But before any of that could happen, it was still autumn in Scranton.

A part of her was mildly pleased that there were no trees surrounding the office complex that had cascading leaves. Not that the sight of the changing colors wasn't pretty, because it was. But she had a sneaking suspicion that should there be a pile of leaves carefully raked together by someone anywhere near the office, Michael would somehow implement said leaves into one of his grand ideas. Leaves came from trees, paper came from trees, and they were a paper company, after all.

"What's on your mind?" Jim asked, snapping her out of her leaf-related thoughts. "You've been really quiet since we left the building."

"Just thinking about how time flies. Doesn't seem like it should be November already," she said, glancing upward at the sky. Was that what she thought it was? It couldn't be. Well, it could be, considering the time of year it was, but she didn't want it to be.

"Yeah," he said, unlocking the doors of the car. "It seems like we were just in Puerto Rico, enjoying the sun and the water, no work, no cares…"

"Don't tempt me." The reminder of their honeymoon reminded her of everything that Scranton wasn't right now.

"Oh, I won't," he said, smirking slightly and turning on the car heater. "But now that I've brought it up, you'll be thinking about it the whole way home."

"It just sounds a lot nicer right now than bitter winds and falling leaves," she said, buckling in her seatbelt.

"I know," he said, laying a hand on her stomach. "But after the falling leaves, comes the snow, and then…"

"And then we'll be parents."

"And then we'll be parents," he repeated, grinning at her and smoothing a loose lock over her ear.

When they pulled into their driveway a short time later, Pam got out and glanced up at the sky once again. She somehow could not wait for the first snow of winter now.

-fini-