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Love Is A Many Splendid Thing

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Abed walks through the front door and slams it shut. He doesn’t say hello or even look at Troy or Annie. He walked straight into the blanket fort and they heard the cardboard door of the Dreamatorium mark 2 close.

Troy turned to Annie and said “What happened? Did you break him?”
Annie just stared at Troy. “Seriously. He walks in the door clearly upset and you immediately think I’m the one that caused it? Come on Troy. Think about it. He had therapy with Britta today, maybe she broke him.”

Troy thought about this for a minute. “I should talk to him.” He got up to go see him when he felt a hand on his arm. He turned to see Annie with a very determined look on her face, like the time she found Abed and him fork jousting again.

“You go talk to Britta. I’ll talk to Abed.” Annie said and Troy knew not to mess with her. He grabbed his keys and walked out the door.

Annie waited a few minutes after Troy left, to be sure he was actually gone. She started to walk over to the blanket fort when she heard banging and ripping.

When it stopped Annie cautiously opened the blanket fort ‘door’. She didn’t know what to expect but seeing Abed on the floor with ripped bits of cardboard everywhere, looking like he was about to cry, wasn’t exactly what she expected.

She stepped around the broken Dreamatorium, as much as she could, and sat down next to Abed. He didn’t stop her but she wasn’t sure that was a good thing. He didn’t look like her Abed. His eyes were distant and he didn’t have any reaction to her sitting there.

After minute of silence Annie tentatively asked. “What happened?”

“To the Dreamatorium or before that?” Abed asked in his usual almost monotone voice.

“I broke the Dreamatorium because of what happened before so I guess I can answer both questions in one.” He wasn’t looking at her and Annie wasn’t sure she liked the sound of his voice. It reminded her too much of the time he thought they would put him in a locker. She reached out her hand to grasp his but before she could reach it, he pulled away.

Annie was really scared now. Although they hadn’t told anyone yet, Annie and Abed had been dating for almost 6 months. She was surprised at how long they were able to keep it a secret, but Abed never pulled away from her. He always welcomed her touch, even before they were together.

“I had my therapy session with Britta today. But you already knew that. She didn’t break me by the way, she just told me the truth, things I’ve been avoiding for a long time.” Annie searched his face for any indication of what was happening, there was none.

“She told me that Jeff is still in love with you. That she was pretty sure you were in love with him. I don’t think she knows we were dating. I think she has an inkling but she’s not certain. I think she’s certain now.”
Abed finished and looked at Annie.

“Jeff doesn’t love me and I definitely don’t love Jeff.” She said quickly. Why would Britta say that if she thought Abed and I were dating?

“Don’t lie to me Annie” Abed sounded really upset.

“No Abed, I’m not..” Abed cut her off. “You are lying. I know because I’ve known since the moment the study group met that you and Jeff were meant to be. He’s the leading man and you’re the leading lady. For a little while it was Britta, but that wasn’t going to last. It’s you Annie, it was always meant to be you. We were idiots thinking we could be together, that we could change the script. I thought I could change the script. You convinced me I could be different, that I could be your leading man.” When Abed finished he stood up quickly and walked out of the blanket fort towards the kitchen.

Annie jumped up and marched over to him before he could reach it. “You cannot say that to me Abed. You cannot diminish what has happened the last 6 months. It’s real Abed. I love you and you love me. I don’t want Jeff. Remember my first time in the Dreamatorium, I told you I didn’t love Jeff and I still don’t. I want you Abed. No one else.” Annie finished and she was out of breath. She hadn’t yelled that much in a long time.

“Don’t yell. I don’t like it. People always yell to try and get to me but it doesn’t work. I don’t understand emotions. I just think about my parents yelling and then my mom leaving. I could never be your real boyfriend because I don’t understand what you’re feeling right now. Jeff would be much better for you. He would understand.”

Annie was on the brink of tears.

“Be with him Annie. It’s what you want. It’s what everyone wants.”

The tears started flowing freely down her face. Annie almost collapsed to the ground but she couldn’t, she couldn’t give up, she needed him to understand.

“Why are you crying? Are you upset with me? Or are you realising the truth too? I cried when I figured it out too. That’s why I broke the Dreamatorium mark 2. It was my one and only moment to be irrational.” Abed said with no indication of emotion.

“Of course I’m not upset with you Abed.” Annie said once she had gained some control of her tears. “I’m upset for you Abed, for me, for us. You don’t understand how much this hurts me and that’s ok. I know that. I knew that going into this relationship. I know you Abed, better than anyone, better than Troy. I know you’re scared because I’m scared too. I’m scared about what people will think of me every single day. I was so scared in High School that I wouldn’t get straight A’s and that people didn’t like me that I started taking pills. I used to think that was the worst decision of my life. Until I met you.” Annie was staring directly into his eyes but he still didn’t see her.

“If I didn’t get hooked on adderall I wouldn’t be here. I would be off at some fancy school doing who knows what because I didn’t have an addiction. But I wouldn’t have become great friends with Troy. I wouldn’t have met Shirley and had the amazing mother figure that she is. I wouldn’t have met Pierce, I probably didn’t need to meet him actually. I wouldn’t have met Britta and gotten the craziest sister anyone could dream of. I wouldn’t have met Jeff , and although I went through a phase of crazy, stalker crush on him, he really is a great friend when he wants to be. And the saddest of all. I wouldn’t have met you. You, my best friend, the one person who has always treated me with respect and not like a kid. You are the only person I want to talk to at the end of the day and when I wake up, I can’t wait to see you. I started setting my alarm earlier so I could spend more time with you. You are everything I’ve ever wanted and more. My life would be empty without you. I need you Abed. More than anyone will know. So don’t tell me I should be with Jeff, stop pushing me away. I need you to understand how much I love you.” Annie finished and she waited for Abed’s response.

Abed blinked at her and then walked away into the blanket fort and emerged a few seconds later standing back in his spot directly across form her. He didn’t say anything to Annie and Annie didn’t say anything to him.

30 minutes later Annie and Abed were still standing in between the kitchen and the blanket fort. Neither of them said anything, but they just looked in each others eyes. Annie was about to loose it again when Troy, Britta, Shirley and Jeff came crashing through the door.

Climbing off of each other Troy asked “Are you ok?”

“Wait, where is he?” Britta asked.

“Where is who?” Annie asked with confusion written all over her face.

“The guy that’s holding you at gun point.” Jeff said with increasing anger.

“What’s hap-pening?” Shirley asked in her trademark rhythmic tone.

“There’s no guy. Sorry, I just needed to get you all here. We should wait for Peirce?” Abed said calmly.

“What? No, Abed explain what’s going on now.” Annie said, clearly annoyed that he stood there silently looking at her for 30 minutes waiting for this.

“Ok. I asked you all here.” “Conned” Jeff interjected. “Because” Abed ignored Jeff. “Annie and I have an announcement.” Abed finished with a flourish of his pointer finger.

“We do?” Annie asked, brow furrowing.

Abed looked over at her and smiled.

“Annie and I have been dating for 6 months. We weren’t sure how to tell you but I figured it was time to let you all know. Troy, I’m sorry I didn’t tell you sooner or before the rest of the group but the tension needed to build and it was more fun this way.”

Through all the gasps and oohs the group had Annie almost didn’t hear Abed.

“Wait, did you just have that fight with me to build tension?” She asked with an almost controlled rage.

“No that was a real fight. I really did break the Dreamatorium because I thought you should be with Jeff. What I said was real but when you told me everything you were feeling I understood and then I thought this would be fun. I’m sorry I didn’t include you in the hi-jinks this time. Maybe next time.” Abed walked over to Annie and kissed her straight on the mouth before she could say anything. His hands were on her waist and after a second Annie let what Abed just said set in and reciprocated the kiss, closing her eyes and putting her arms around his neck.

They didn’t realise how long they had been kissing when they heard a cough coming from four different people.

“Sorry about that.” Annie said sheepishly, with a grin on her face and blushing harder than she ever had before. Abed kept his hands on her waist as they turned towards the group.

After a second, the situation seemed to settle over everyone and they were all so excited that Annie and Abed were together.

Jeff high-fived Abed and nodded to Annie. Britta and Shirley ran over and both hugged Annie saying how cute her and Abed are and how age appropriate.

Troy was a little glum but walked over to Abed “This doesn’t change a thing. We’re still best friends and we can be Reggie and the Inspector on location.” Abed told Troy with a slight smile. Troy grinned and they did their famous handshake.

Everyone stayed for dinner that night and once they had finished their pizza Britta put music on and they all danced like fools around the living room. Annie looked over at Abed and said “I’m so happy. I love you.” “I know.” Abed said with a knowing smirk, wrapping his arms around her waist.

Suddenly the front door opened “Annie are you alrigh.. Hey are you guys having a party without me?”