Title: Seven's A Crowd

Rating: PG

Disclaimer: Alas, I don't own the characters of Popular. They belong to Ryan Murphy, but hopefully he won't mind if I borrow them for a little while.

Feedback: Yes, please!

A/N: Just a little fic I thought of to amuse myself, while I procrastinate from working on the next chapter of "One Crazy Night" because I'm not sure what I want to happen next there. Anyway, hope you like this!

Brooke and Sam stood in line at the movie theater, having finally arrived at a compromise as to which movie they should watch. Sam had grudgingly agreed to see the new Gwyneth flick, on the condition that Brooke's finances supply the popcorn.

With tickets and popcorn in hand, they were about to enter the theater, when they heard, "See, Nic! Ah told you it was Brookie and Spam! They're standin' right there!"

Both girls cringed -- there was no mistaking that voice, and it belonged to someone they hadn't hoped to see tonight. Sam looked at Brooke and asked beseechingly, "Can't we just run away right now and pretend we didn't hear them?"

Before Brooke had a chance to reply, though, Nicole and Mary Cherry were beside them. Mary Cherry looked her usual happy-in-a-scary-kind-of-way self, and Nic merely arched an eyebrow at them. "Well, look who we have here. Brooke, I didn't expect to see you out, tonight. Didn't you tell me that you had too much homework to do? And Spam, why aren't you off playing with your little loser friends?"

Sam opened her mouth, on the verge of an angry retort, but Brooke quickly cut her off. "Yeah, I did have a lot of work, but it somehow went faster than I expected it to. So, when Sam told me she was planning on coming to this movie, I decided to join her. I would have called you, but it all happened right at the last minute."

Nicole looked at Sam in disdainful surprise. "YOU wanted to see THIS movie, Spam? Somehow I find that hard to believe. Your taste in fashion suggests that your taste in culture must be just as horrendous."

Brooke could see the thinly veiled anger flash behind Sam's eyes, but miraculously, she managed to keep it in check, as she smiled a tense and tight-lipped smile. "Well, Satan, as much as I argued against it, Mr. Grant asked me to write a review for The Zapruder. Plus, it seemed like a good idea to do a little research so that next time you rave about Gwyneth's glorious 'talent,' -- and I use that term very loosely, in spite of the anomaly that was 'Shakespeare in Love' -- I'd be able to thoroughly rip the performance to shreds." Sam then silently cursed at herself, realizing that because of her spontaneous lie, she'd now have to actually write a review, an admission to the entire student body that she'd willingly gone to see this movie.

Mary Cherry, who had zoned out during this last exchange, noticed that everyone else had stopped talking, so took the opportunity to hurry everyone inside the theater. "Well, enough chit-chattin', y'all. Let's go in so we can snag the best seats for optimum Gwyneth-viewin'."

Nicole and Mary Cherry then waltzed inside, while Sam and Brooke followed, with varying degrees of reluctance, knowing they'd now all have to sit together. Sam turned to Brooke and commented, "'Optimum,' huh? I didn't think Mary Cherry knew any three-syllable words."

Brooke replied, "Honestly, neither did I."

About a hundred minutes later, the four girls exited the theater. Even Brooke had to admit that it hadn't been too good of a movie. But she blamed it on Ben Affleck. "Well, this has been fun. I'm really glad we could all hang out together. But Sam and I should probably be heading home. See you girls tomorrow!"

And without another word, the soon-to-be-stepsisters hurried out to Brooke's car.

However, half an hour later, the girls were not back at home. Instead, they had just received their orders at Cold Stone, and were looking around for a place to sit. Out of the corner of her eye, Sam noticed some motion and turned in that direction. There, she saw a waving Harrison, sitting with Lily and Carmen. Sam groaned quietly, and mumbled just loud enough for Brooke to hear her. "What, did all of Kennedy High decide to go out tonight? It's a friggin' school night! Shouldn't everyone else be at home, like good little students?"

Brooke smiled sadly, understanding Sam's frustration, but led the way over to the table, where the three friends had pulled over two more chairs. "Hey guys, what are you doing here?"

Carmen just looked at Brooke quizzically. "Well, we're eating ice cream, obviously."

"Right. Yeah. Obviously."

Brooke and Sam remained standing awkwardly, until Lily asked, "Well, aren't you two going to sit down?"

Brooke and Sam dutifully sat down, as Lily continued, "Sam, we called you to ask if you wanted to join us, but your mom said that you weren't home."

"Yeah, Brooke and I just went to see a movie." Unfortunately, the fact that this was hardly a common event only occurred to her after the words had left her mouth.

Knowing this, Brooke looked sharply towards Sam, as all three of the others frowned in confusion. Not that going out for ice cream together wasn't in itself a strange occurrence, but the fact that they had also gone to a movie was beyond surprising. Harrison voiced his friends' thoughts, asking, "No offense, but isn't it kind of weird for the two of you to be hanging out? I mean, not that it's a bad thing. Just kind of weird. And not normal."

Sam blushed slightly. "Yeah, well, in order to appease the parentals, we thought we'd give a little sisterly bonding a try."

That seemed to be good enough of an excuse as, after another moments' silence, Harrison just shrugged and returned back to his debate with Lily and Carmen about the pros and cons of vegetarianism.

Later that night, Sam and Brooke finally returned to the Palace. It had been a relatively quiet ride back from the ice cream parlor. Without asking, Brooke simply followed Sam into her room.

Sam turned to look at Brooke and smiled apologetically. "Well, that was a bust of a first date. Sorry about that. I was totally looking forward to just spending an evening out with you. Instead I got to go on a date with you, plus five other uninvited guests. I didn't even get to hold your hand during the movie -- I'm sure Mary Cherry would have been oblivious, but I was worried about Nicole noticing something."

"Hey, don't apologize. It's totally not your fault. I guess next time we'll just have to go somewhere farther away, or do something where we know we won't run into anyone." Both girls smiled, Sam obviously relieved that Brooke was willing for there to be a "next time."

Suddenly, Brooke become somewhat nervous. She glanced down at her feet, lightly biting on her lower lip, before looking back into Sam's eyes. Hesitantly, but with a slight smile across her lips, Brooke asked, "Well, I know tonight wasn't exactly what we had in mind...but do you think I could still get a goodnight kiss?"

A huge grin swept across Sam's face. "I think that could be arranged."

She stepped forward, leaving only about an inch between them. She reached a hand up to Brooke's face, cupping her cheek, as chocolate eyes searched hazel ones. "You're so beautiful," Sam whispered, almost to herself. Brooke was unable to hold back any longer, and quickly brought her hand to the back of Sam's head, pulling their mouths together. The kiss started off tentatively, but they were soon involved in a full-blown make-out session, their arms wrapped tightly around each other.

When they finally pulled apart, neither girl could stop smiling, nor were they willing to release their hold on each other.

"Damn, as long as all our dates end up like this, I don't care who interrupts them," Brooke teased.

Sam smacked Brooke playfully on the arm, before happily bringing their lips together once again.

THE END!