I wake up every morning at seven when my alarm clock actually works.

I get dressed in clothes I've stolen from Carly, because my clothes never get washed. They're all dirty and I have too few, anyway.

I hop on the bus and try to ignore the freshmen begging me for my autograph, or the idiots trying to aggravate me.

I've learned how to beat them up.

So I do.

I get off at my cruddy school full of cruddy teachers and cruddy kids.

I head to my locker and smile for Carly when she asks me how I'm doing.

I pretend I find Freddie getting picked on funny.

I laugh.

It kills me.

Day by day, the same pattern repeats itself.

I know I'm going to lose it eventually.

Maybe do something I'll regret.

Maybe act out.

Maybe do something stupid.

Maybe go crazy.

Maybe fall in love.

Maybe…


.sSs.


"Sam, what's up?" Carly asks me while she pours a cup of Wahoo Punch. "You've been acting different lately." She passes me a corn dog, and I try to pretend that I'm hungry and nibble at the bread. Everyone's looking at me, so I cock an eyebrow and mutter, "Weird how?"

"Weird, like you're not eating your corn dog!" Carly insisted, and pushed the plate towards me. "Look, if you want some fancy Robin's Wieners, they opened a shop downtown. We can go down and buy some for you!"

I shoved the plate back towards her. "I'm not hungry."

She stared at me, her mouth gaping open.

"What?" I half-ask, half-whine.

"Sam, not hungry?" she splutters. "You haven't eaten, like, anything lately. I don't get it."

Freddie looks up from his laptop to say, "Maybe she's transformed into one of those delusional teens who think that no matter what they do, they're fat?"

"Can it, nub!" I shouted, scolding myself mentally. Not your best comeback, Sam. I'll have to try harder next time. Maybe look up insults on some website. There's gotta be a site for that kind of stuff, right? There's a site for everything. Maybe-

"Oh my god, Sam!" Carly screamed. "You're starving yourself?"

"No!" I retort, glaring at her and the dork.

"You are too!" she yells. "You're not eating, you've been miserable… Oh my god, Sam…" She sort of swoons a little bit and sits down on the table. "Sam, why?"

"Why what?"

"Why wouldn't you tell us you were becoming an anorexic?" she begs.

"I'M NOT STARVING MYSELF, OKAY?" I scream in her face. "Just lay off, okay? I'm fine."

"Maybe she's depressed." Freddie offers. "Adolescents often go through stages of depression due to the heightened hormone levels in their bodies thanks to the transitions from adult to-"

"SHUT UP!" I yell, my rage unstoppable. I pick up a chair, fling it towards him (missing by an inch on purpose) and storm upstairs. I'm not going to be a part of this crud. They can assume all they want, I'm not starving myself or anything.

…it's different than that.

Trying not to break down completely, I run into the nearest room and slam the door before locking it. That room happened to be none other than Carly's delightfully girly pink-and-purple-splashed bedroom. I collapsed onto her bed and-

"SAM, OPEN THE DOOR!" a voice calls out from the other side of the wall.

"I'm staying in here until you admit I don't have a problem!" I scream. I'm not giving into them. There is nothing wrong with me, absolutely NOTHING. I don't care what they think.

I hear whispers, and after a few minutes the creak of floorboards indicating they've gone back downstairs. The emotion I'd been hiding had welled up and bursted like a dam. Tears flowed and I tried to keep my voice down, but every once in a while a sniffle or sob would escape my lips. I heard people coming back up the stairs, and in a panic, ran over to Carly's makeup drawer, grabbed a tissue, and wiped the fat tears off my cheeks before calling out, "Who is it?" My voice hadn't cracked or anything, thank god.

"Sam, it's Freddie."

"What are you doing?"

"Carly wanted me to come check up on you."

I process this for a second. "So, you're alone?"

"…yes?"

I open the door and grab him by the collar, yanking him in the room.

"Ow! Sam, what the-"

I tried my best not to cry, I really did. I'd only cried a few times in my life, and never, ever in front of him. But I couldn't help it. And although I hated it, I didn't mind. It just felt… okay. He may be a nub but he was my friend. Kind of? Maybe? Ugh, I'm just so confused right now…

His eyes doubled in size as he watched me. "Sam, are you crying?"

I sniffled and looked up. "No, dork, I'm just cutting unions in here…" I barely finish the sentence before collasping in his arms. He awkwardly gives me a tense hug, and pats my back a few times.

"I'm so sorry." I sputter. "I just… I can't let Carly know why I'm crying. I'd be too weird. She- she can't know. She'll tell someone. And I can't-"

"WHOA! Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa!" Freddie cut me off, his voice full of urgency. "Did you hurt someone? Are you taking drugs? God, Sam, what are you talking about?"

I looked into his eyes and I knew I couldn't tell him. I had to think of a lie. I looked up for inspiration, but instead of thinking, I blurted out, "I'm in love!"

Freddie's eyes widened in shock, but after a second of anticipation he grinned and yelled, "This is great! Sam, you're in love! That explains all of this! I think… What?"

I tried to think of a way to cover up what I'd already tried to cover up. The best I could think of was "Um… well, he's kinda hot, and he's a senior, but he knows about my family and my reputation, and, um, he's one of those… I don't know, 'prissy' types."

"Like Carly in male form?" Freddie interrupted.

"Exactly!" I yelled, a little too exuberantly. Guess I was excited that he'd understood what I'd been saying. "So I'm not sure if he likes me or not. But I really like him and it's killing me not being able to know what he's thinking of…"

"Aww, Sam, you're in love!" he cooed in a mocking tone, and I hit him in the shoulder. "Ow… Sorry…" he mumbled. "So, what's his name?"

Inside, I panicked. I said the first thing on my tongue: "Romania." Wow. Okay. Guess the one time I did my homework had a little too much impact on me.

"Romania?" Freddie snorted. "Who's name is Romania?" he choked out between laughs.

"His name…" I managed to spit out, but I couldn't even hear myself over Freddork's laughter. "Shut up! Just…" But he wouldn't stop laughing about the alleged Romania, gorgeous dream date, and my face was turning redder by the second. I couldn't believe this was happening to me. I'd just been out-dorked by the king of dorks. What seemed like forever and a half passed, and I kept trying to drown his mocking laughter out of my ears. Infuriated, I bent down, ready to sock him in the face…

But somehow, I ended up lifting his chin ever so slightly and giving him a kiss.

I heard his surprised muffled "mmphh!" as he realized what was happening, but I wasn't about to stop. That'd give the dork his satisfaction. I grabbed his neck and pulled him closer, and he didn't seem to mind at all. His hands wrapped around my waist and only after what felt like an enternity, did we pull away from each other.

"I love you, Romania." I said, a smile peeking at the corners of my lips.

And for the first time in my life, I, Sam Puckett, cried tears of joy.


.sSs.


AN: I'm sorry. I'm so sorry. I'm just such a huge Seddie dork, and the wait for iLost My Mind is making ME lose my mind... I had to get it off my mind. Please excuse the redundancy of this.