Author's Note: Written as a treat for Haywire for Yuletide 2012.
The silence at the table was stifling.
"I always thought that if we ever - you know, got together - that it would have to wait until after we got out of Greendale and matured past being stupid college students," Annie said, looking across the table at Troy and smiling a tentative, wan smile.
"Let me guess, you thought the same thing back at Riverside."
"Er - sort of?" She blushed and ran her fork through the tangled mass of noodles on her plate. "I - I never really thought I'd see you again after graduation day, until I saw you on the first day of Spanish class."
"You can't get rid of me that easy, Edison."
"At the time, I didn't know any better." She exhaled and rested her hands behind her head. "And then we got entangled in the love dodecahedron from hell that sucked up our entire time here - until now, at least."
"Would you change any of it?"
"I could do without the Sara Bareilles soundtrack to my love life, sure, yeah. But I think we - we probably had to do what we did then, because otherwise we wouldn't be the same people that we are now."
"And the people we are are awesome, and you know it." He let out a laugh and spun his fork in the air. "Abed said something about 'the fact that you and Annie are going out to dinner tonight without me, and to some place that doesn't serve greasy, fried things in paper bags, is a testament to internal continuity.' Or something."
"I take it that's his way of approving of us."
"It is." He paused for a moment. "Hey, what do you say we finish and get outta here? It's kinda uncomfortable to be around all these guys in fancy black ties."
The smile that lit up Annie's face was unmistakable, even in the candlelight. "I - yes. Let's."
And as they ran off into the night, Troy held her hand so tightly that she felt as though every bone in her hand would snap, and she wanted to just hold on tighter. This was everything she had wanted for some time now. And as he kissed her, his lips soft against hers as he pressed her against a lamppost and kissed her, she felt as though nothing could ever compare to this moment.
Abed was right. Something told her that if she was to tell him that when they got home, that he would smirk that unintelligible smirk of his and make an offhand remark about how he knew it all along. And maybe he had, after all.