"Remind me again why we get to stay holed up in the house." Danny asked, carrying the last of his things into the entryway to their new home. "Not that I'm complaining."
Danny and Sam had gotten married exactly three days ago and they were currently transporting all of Danny's belongings out of Tucker's apartment and into their wonderful suburban dream. Sam had to admit that she loved it in the house. Of all of the places to share a space, she couldn't have imagined a better place than this. Of course, she had begun to err on the side of caution when opening cabinets and such after the last incident.
Thankfully…or maybe not, depending on who you asked, Jack had insisted on showing her how to use what he called a 'Fenton Thermos'. Sam immediately recognized it as the thermos that Jazz had used that day. She was glad it was just a thermos and not something that looked more menacing. She didn't think she'd feel too safe wielding something like a 'Fenton Torch' or a 'Fenton Bazooka'. The thermos would do just fine.
"Right about now I think we're supposed to be lounging on a Tahitian beach sipping mojitos." She supposed, glancing at the imaginary watch on her wrist.
It was true. They were supposed to be on their honeymoon. But since they weren't actually married, they weren't actually going anywhere, which was fine with Sam. Though they'd left the reception with the intention of going to their new house, Pamela had called the car phone at the very last minute and insisted that they be driven to the airport because "people would be watching".
With Sam asleep, Danny was left to obediently follow his new mother-in-law's paranoid demands and had the driver take them to the airport instead.
After being forced to walk around and simply "be seen" for nearly an hour, Sam, who was still exhausted, insisted that they just crash for the night at her old apartment. They had spent the other two days at Jazz's house to appease her mother's desire that they not be seen for at least seventy-two hours. They'd fulfilled the crazy woman's wishes and were now finally able to reside in the place that they would call home for the next year.
"Yeah, well how about you also envision a cabana boy to get the rest of this crap into your love nest?" Tucker grumbled, hauling an extra large box in and plopping it near the stairs. "Hope that wasn't delicate."
"I hope your face isn't delicate." Danny retaliated before they engaged in a punching match.
Sam rolled her eyes and headed back toward the moving truck only to see that it was empty. She pulled the door down and glanced around at her surroundings. It seemed like a very peaceful, subdued suburban neighborhood. Her eyes shifted back and forth toward the surrounding houses as she skeptically wondered which one of her neighbors was probably a serial killer. It was always neighborhoods like these.
'I hope this isn't one of those neighborhoods with the idiot wife who has no idea her husband is hiding some other life.' Sam thought to herself, snorting at the thought. She turned around to see Danny and Tucker surveying their surroundings as she just had been.
"Alrighty, Fentons. I'm out of here. Gonna drop the truck back on my way home." Tucker thumped Danny on the back and hugged Sam goodbye as he hopped into the driver's seat of the small truck.
"Thanks, Tuck. I owe you, man." Danny said with a stretch.
"Getting you off my damn couch is payment enough. Enjoy the honeymoon…but don't enjoy it too much." Tucker turned the engine on with a wink before he sped off. If Sam had more energy she probably would have chased the truck and smacked him upside his head at the first red light.
The last three days had given Sam ample time to think and process everything that had occurred within those last few weeks. She met a guy…married the guy…introduced him to her dysfunctional family…met his psycho ex-girlfriend…became friends with the guy…met his family…married the guy again…and now she had currently moved in with him. Really, when she put it that way it was a lot less complicated…especially if she left out the drunken parts. I mean really, who actually needed to remember the drunken parts?
That was another thing. The drunken memories had slowed to the point where they would only resurface if she concentrated on them when the déjà vu struck. Though she constantly assured herself that it was for the best and that her mind was obviously shielding her from drunken recollections that she would never again be able to forget, Sam couldn't help but wish that she had all of the pieces to the puzzle. For instance, she could not remember how exactly the idea of marriage had come into play and maybe more importantly, whose idea it had been.
Yes, she already had the clear memory of Danny proposing to her in his stupor and of herself saying yes, but the details of how they'd gotten there were incredibly hazy.
Had they been talking about her impending nuptials and how much she detested her future husband? She wasn't quite sure whether that scenario was easier to believe because Adam was truly insufferable or because it just made life so much simpler and sweeter to blame that blonde windbag and keep it moving.
Sam followed Danny into the house, eyeing the houses to the left and to the right of them respectively. Though she didn't plan on being completely antisocial, she hoped that she wouldn't be expected to attend weekly barbecues and housewarmings. In fact, as she closed the front door she hoped even more so that she would not be expected to be the host of weekly barbecues and a housewarming. She turned to Danny to voice these thoughts only to find that he was no longer standing beside her.
Swiveling around, Sam caught a glimpse of his back as he lightly tread up the stairs. It amazed her at times how swiftly and quietly Danny always seemed to move. Sam kicked off her shoes and moved to follow him.
"Sometimes I wonder if I married a ninja…or if you were just really good at sneaking out when you were younger." Sam mused, a smile playing at her lips. Danny turned his head to her as he gave a slight kick to the door to the left of them.
"You gonna speculate on my possibly troubled youth or you gonna open the bedroom door?" Danny smirked, nodding his head toward the door that his foot had just reached.
Sam's heart nearly stopped as his words circled through her head. Of course it made sense…Jack and Maddie had bought the house for the soon-to-be newlyweds and it was just a starter house, so of course there weren't going to be a lot of bedrooms in it. The mansion had obviously spoiled her as far as bedrooms went. When a girl grows up in a palatial palace with over fifteen bedrooms in it, she will obviously be tainted bedroom-wise for the rest of her existence.
But then again, she had lived in her one-bedroom apartment and done just fine…but then again, she was one person in one bedroom. She was now looking to be two people in one bedroom…in one bed.
It took Danny clearing his throat for Sam to realize that though her fingers were tightly grasped around the doorknob, she had never opened it. She shut her eyes as Danny walked in ahead of her and dropped the box on the floor with a soft 'thump'. Once she opened her eyes, she looked around in confusion.
"This…is all my stuff." She said, walking into the large bedroom. The walls were painted a beautiful sage green and the cherry wood floors were freshly polished. There was a new gray and black upholstered headboard attached to her bed frame now, replacing the old wooden headboard that had long since dulled since her days at the mansion. She couldn't tell whether everything else had been replaced with newer replicas by her overbearing mother or whether it all just looked like new in her new bedroom.
"Well, yeah. This is your room." Danny remarked. He took one look at Sam's relieved face before he began laughing. "Sam," He pointed to the box near the door. "That's your stuff. My room's across the hall. I'm giving you the master bedroom and I'm gonna be in the guest room."
Danny walked over to a door that Sam had assumed to be a closet before he opened it, revealing a full sized bathroom. Sam stepped in it with him, admiring the lovely light gold faucets and fixtures. She stood near the sink, breaking out into a smile.
"You know the last time we were standing in a bathroom together the circumstances were substantially different…aside from the still married part." She remarked, wincing at the memory of herself heaving into the porcelain throne.
Danny walked out of the bathroom and corrected her with a grimace. "Actually, the last time we were in a bathroom together you were covered in ectoplasm."
Following Danny out of what she now knew to be her bedroom, Sam realized that he was right. Why was it that every time they had been in the bathroom together she had been a less than ideal version of herself? Sam also made a mental note not to get too comfortable about the idea of being in bathrooms with Danny. It wasn't healthy… "Oh yeah. I had forgotten about that."
"Good." Danny muttered, going down the stairs much less quietly than he'd gone up them. After about thirty more minutes the pair of them worked in comfortable silence, bringing Danny's things upstairs into Danny's room.
Though he obviously hadn't lived in the room yet, it definitely seemed as if he had. From the navy blue paint to the dark gray carpet that lay underneath his bed frame and against the hardwood, the room just seemed to scream to her that it belonged to him. She could only imagine just how defined the bedroom would become once all of his things were unpacked and placed where he wanted them to be. Sam placed the last box she had to carry onto Danny's bare mattress, sighing tiredly as her stomach made its hunger known.
"Looks like you also forgot to eat." Danny said, leaning against the door frame with his keys in hand.
"I know," Sam said, slumping to the floor. "I checked when you and Tucker were unloading the truck. There is nothing in this house but water and wedding cake. It's ridiculous, even prisoners have bread."
Laughing, Danny took two short strides and extended his hand to help up his famished bride. "Unlike prisoners we happen to be fully capable of going to the store. You game?"
Sam had barely nodded halfway before her stomach growled again and Danny immediately hoisted her over his shoulder. "Wait! I have to get my shoes!"
"Nope. No time, Mrs. Fenton. We've got to go before you starve to death!" He made his way toward the door with Sam failing her attempt not to laugh as she squirmed on his shoulder.
Sam stared inside the metal frame of the cart she was currently pushing as Danny dropped yet another box of sugary cereal into it. Danny had chosen the supermarket his mother often frequented right outside of Amity Park. He didn't know of any other one and neither Sam nor he felt like getting lost around town to find one locally.
So far they had filled up about half of the large shopping cart, but as far as Sam was concerned, it was all junk.
Her eyes scanned over what she had mentally dubbed the 'man food' that Danny had been haphazardly throwing in. There were several microwavable dinners in what the box assured were 'man sized portions'…yeah, whatever…and more cereal than she was comfortable with. She was beginning to see why Maddie fussed over Danny and his eating habits so much. If it were up to him he would probably have lived off of processed macaroni and Cookie Crisp.
Luckily, because one of them had no intention of dying, Sam had placed what she was referring to as the 'real food' in the cart, such as meats, vegetables, eggs…and other things that weren't every dietitian's nightmare.
She followed Danny into the soup aisle, which they had been in nearly four times, because apparently he'd forgotten something...again. She was just about ready to tell him that if he hadn't found it the first handful of times that it obviously wasn't necessary.
"Never again am I shopping with you without a list." Sam informed him.
"What do we need a list for? We're already here. And besides, you were on the brink of death. There wasn't time for a list." Danny retorted, scanning over rows and rows of cans.
Sam threw him a look, leaning against the handle of the cart as Danny continued to peruse the aisle. Finally, he returned with an armful of Chef Boyardee, resulting in Sam stopping to hold up both hands.
"Ah-ah-ah." She tutted. "If you put one more over processed can of junk into this cart, Daniel Fenton…"
Danny dropped them into the cart defiantly. "Hey, it's not for me. It's for Lynne. I remember she said they were her favorite so I figured they would be there waiting for her whenever she comes over."
Sam's heart instantly melted. She could envision a much younger Danny doing the same thing to Maddie on a similar grocery store excursion. His blue eyes were alight with compassion as well as a small glint that she knew meant that he knew he was going to get what he wanted. If Danny ever had children, she knew his wife would be in trouble. Sam's neck grew hot as she remembered that she was currently his wife and that she had basically just imagined having children with him.
"—and they would have your eyes." Sam informed him as Danny fumbled with the room key. Her head turned to see a door open to the far left of them and much to her drunken excitement, she recognized the person.
"Hey! It's Taylor!" She waved at the impersonator who had just taken part in their wedding earlier that evening. The drunken woman, who now that Sam was not quite so inebriated, looked a lot less like Taylor Swift and a lot more like Betty White.
Apparently, it wasn't the first time that her imagination had run wild. Sam blinked at the memory, focusing in on the black and white checkered tile that she had been staring at. Danny hadn't noticed as he was back to filling their cart with unnecessary items. As she shifted her weight from her left foot to her right, Danny finally turned toward her holding two cans of 'Beef Ravioli'.
"I don't see the microwavable kind. Can you look in the next aisle and see if they're stocked there?" Danny asked, looking up from the can labels.
The newly-appointed Mrs. Fenton raised an eyebrow, resting her elbows on the cart handle. "I doubt they would separate them into two aisles, Danny."
"Are we about to have our first married couple disagreement over ravioli?" Danny smirked. He wasn't even trying to hide the bemusement in his voice. Sam pursed her lips and pushed the cart toward the end of the aisle without another word.
Though his reasoning was stupid and he was probably wrong, she didn't want to waste their first disagreement over something so trivial or sully their first grocery store trip. She turned into the next aisle, as requested by her husband, muttering, "Technically, we've been married the whole damn time. This wouldn't be the first…just the one I'm the most right about."
She had pushed the cart halfway to the 'Microwavables' when a familiar voice forced her to stop dead in her tracks.
"—no, no. It's perfectly fine. I've been to three stores already so I've already gotten used to the disappointment…" The woman's voice trailed off as she turned her head to see where the sound of screeching cart wheels had come from. Valerie gave a humorless chuckle once she saw who it was.
"Can I help you with anything else, Miss?" The young grocery store attendant questioned beside her. Valerie shook her head with a slight wave of her hand before she found herself standing directly in front of Sam.
In her hand she held a can of imitation tomato paste that Sam could very well see being launched at her face. She took a careful sidestep so that she was strategically out of reach in case the other woman felt like testing her throwing arm.
"Slumming it, aren't we? Don't you have servants for this sort of thing?" Valerie asked.
Sam concentrated with every fiber of her being to say the most anodyne thing she could think of. In the end, Gram's long ago lecture of what to say when you could say nothing nice won out and she found herself simply remarking, "Valerie. Hello."
The other woman seemed not to be appeased by Sam's peaceful remark and continued. "So what brings you here?"
Sam simply gestured at the cart she was pushing as she looked behind Valerie. She could at least find the 'Microwavables' before she was brutally murdered in the grocery store. She might have preferred to be taken out on her wedding day instead of in McNally's Grocery Emporium…cold…alone…surrounded by refried beans…It could have been worse. She could have been maimed in the freezer section.
"Well what? Why are you asking me questions?" Sam finally snapped. Those would probably be her last words. She might as well have stood up for herself in her final moments.
"Why aren't you answering them?" The other woman asked haughtily, as if this were an amusing game to her. It probably was. Valerie flicked her wrist, revealing a very lovely silver bracelet with a sapphire teardrop shaped charm hanging from it. Sam chastised herself for mentally complimenting the style of the enemy.
"Why do you have to act like such a psychotic bit—?" Sam's harsh words were cut off by Danny obliviously approaching and remarking, "Fine. You were right but I'm not sleeping on the cou—"
The "—ch" sound lamely fell from his lips as he found his wife and scorned ex facing off with only a shopping cart between them.
"Well, now. I heard that there had been a second wedding and yet here I am, still shocked to find you two domesticating it up." Valerie remarked, coolly glancing inside of their cart.
Danny cleared his throat and gave a slight nod as if he were unsure of what to say. Sam could have hit him. He was always Mr. Talkative until the ball was completely on his turf…or however that stupid sports analogy went. She had more pressing matters at hand…like the fact that she was going to be impaled with fake tomatoes if her lovely significant other didn't tap into his gift of gab.
"I trust it was a lovely affair. Then again, every affair with you is lovely isn't it, Manson?...Oh. I meant Fenton." Valerie smiled tightly. Her eyes were locked on Sam's again. Sam decided to concentrate all of her efforts into another attempt to be the bigger person.
"Though it's probably just as well that I didn't receive an invitation. I might have been expected to toast and I just can't think of a single thing that rhymes with 'home wrecker'." Valerie continued offhandedly.
"Double decker." An older Latino man suggested as he passed by the three of them with his cart. Sam closed her eyes tightly and mentally thanked the peanut gallery.
Seeing that she was now getting no response from either of the newlyweds, she finally conceded. "Well. To the new Mrs. Fenton from the woman who almost was…enjoy it. You never know when some little white girl with money and a flat butt is going to steal him away."
Sam found herself gaping slightly. Not just because her butt was not flat but because Valerie had just said...
Valerie gave another humorless laugh. "Oh...you didn't know, did you? Well, you're welcome for introducing you." She turned to Danny. "Secrets in your marriage, huh? Big secrets? Haunting secrets?"
"You should get going." Danny suddenly suggested, gritting his teeth slightly.
Valerie shrugged as she backed away, a dangerous glimmer in her eyes. "As a former flame, it's my obligation to inform her." Turning back to Sam she evenly remarked, "One day you are going to wake up and you are going to realize that Daniel Fenton is all that you think he is…and so much more. It's almost like he's a whole 'nother person…"
With that said, Valerie turned on her heel and walked away. Danny turned to Sam to see that her face had set into an even expression. She kept her mouth shut as they walked through the last three aisles and didn't say a word through the checkout line or as they loaded the bags into Betsy. In fact, it wasn't until Danny started the engine and looked at her with both of his hands clutching the wheel that she finally spoke.
"Engaged." She said it so quietly that Danny had to turn the radio volume all the way down to hear her. "You were engaged to Valerie."
Danny sighed. "Correct me if I'm wrong but we met on your wedding day…"
"Bachelorette party." Sam corrected.
"You know what I—"
"Okay. You know how usually the whole Adam and Valerie thing works 'tit for tat'? Not this time. You were engaged to her, Danny. No wonder she hates me the way she does. I didn't just ruin her relationship…God, I ruined what was about to be her marriage!" Sam moved her bangs from her face brusquely.
Sam was beyond frustrated. Though she was positively sure that Valerie was a close second to the devil (her mother was of course said devil) she could finally somewhat grasp the reason for her fury. Here she was, about to marry a guy…well, not just any guy, Danny…and in three point two seconds, he was gone. It was like what she did to Adam…except this time it wasn't okay!
"Almost engaged." Danny admitted, lowly. "We were…talking about getting engaged."
"Do not use semantics with me, Danny. You were about to marry her." Sam shot back. She was sitting forward so rigidly that the seat belt was pressing against her chest.
"No. I wasn't." Danny pulled the car into a random parking lot before he turned the ignition off and turned toward her. Sam looked around to see that the parking lot was not as random as she thought. They were at Club Baja.
"Every single night Valerie and I would start fighting. Sometimes it would be about big things…other times it would be about the stupidest things. She just…anyway, every night I'd leave out. I used to go to Jazz's or Tucker's. A few times I crashed in my old bedroom at home, but after a while I found myself coming here. I never actually went in or anything until…"
"The night before I was supposed to marry Adam." Sam clued in. Danny nodded.
"I walked into the apartment and Val and I had a major blowout about getting married. She said we'd been together for nearly five years and she was getting tired of waiting. So she gave me an ultimatum…and I said I needed time to think about it and I ended up here. I don't even remember walking in, I just remember sitting down and ordering a—"
"—vodka, straight up. I remember." Sam told him softly. "…Oh. That means…"
"Yeah." He nodded. "The next time Valerie heard from me was the next morning when I called to tell her that I had married you."
Sam inhaled deeply. All she wanted to do was collapse into her old bed in their new house. The day had been exhausting between moving Danny's things, their confrontation with Valerie and grocery shopping. She wasn't sure whether her newfound information made her feel better or worse about the situation. Danny had pulled out of the parking lot and began driving again, leaving Sam to silently mull over her thoughts.
"I'm sorry." Danny said, patting her hand gently as he stopped at a red light. Sam gave a soft smile.
"So am I. I'm sorry. I overreacted. She just seemed so smug and like she knew something I didn't and it just made me so irritated." Sam demonstrated her irritation by pretending to wring her hands around something while shaking it.
"Understandable." Danny nodded. "And now, since I've gotten pretty awesome with my Adam impression you can work on your Valerie."
Sam laughed. She was beginning to recognize her surroundings again. "Okay. From this point on, let's agree. No secrets."
Danny, who was looking straight ahead as he drove into their neighborhood, gave a stiff nod. He pulled up into their driveway as he turned to her. "Sam—"
"Danny! Look out!" Sam cried out.
Danny turned his head and immediately slammed on the brakes to avoid running over a middle-aged woman with what looked like a pie. Sam blinked once…then again before she realized that the woman was no figment of her imagination and neither was the pie.
Sam scrambled out of the car, groceries forgotten. "Oh my God, are you okay?!"
The woman smiled, wiping her free hand on the tan and white flowered apron she was wearing. She looked like she had walked right off of the set of 'Desperate Housewives'. Her hair was perfectly tied back into a bun and her makeup looked light and fresh as though it had been airbrushed onto her. She'd had Botox for sure, because there was no possible way that her face was just…like that and her crisp white shirt was nearly as bright as the wedding dresses that had been in Sam's old bedroom.
"Oh, I'm completely alright. You must be the new Mrs. Fenton! It's finally nice to meet you!" Sam gave her best smile as she resisted the urge not to bolt. This was definitely the serial killer. Sam eyed the pie cautiously.
"Oh, Danny! Good to see you again! How are your parents?" The medium blonde haired woman asked Danny, who had come to stand behind her.
"Mrs. Thomas, hi. Sam, this is our next-door neighbor." He nodded toward the white house with the blue shutters to the left of theirs. "My parents and I met her when we were fixing things up."
Sam nodded, still smiling. Just because they were acquainted did not take away from the fact that she was quite possibly a pie-wielding mass murderer who had invited herself to take a stroll onto their driveway.
"Oh, please. It's Olivia. I see that you went grocery shopping. Preparing for the storm?" Olivia questioned, taking a quick and nosy glance at Sam's car which was parked behind her.
"We didn't know there was going to be a—"
"—you mean 'Hurricane Valerie'?" Sam mumbled to herself.
"—storm." Danny finished, casting a side glance at Sam.
"Oh, well you probably wouldn't have. Ritchie, my husband, has got an in with the head meteorologist in Michigan, he says there's going to be a storm coming in about eight weeks. I'm stocking up now before everyone else begins to stock up. I just hate it when the grocery stores lose their stock of chicken noodle." She turned to Sam as if she was expecting her to share the sentiment, but only received a blank look in return.
"Now, I just came to give you two this," Olivia handed the pie to Sam, who tried not to display her horror. "I'm sure you two have tons of honeymooning to get back to. Any man who nearly runs over a neighbor because he's staring at his new bride is surely in love!" She turned away, giggling to herself as she crossed back over to her own lawn in her perfectly white tennis shoes.
"What kind of fresh hell have you brought me to?" Sam whispered, sharing Danny's confused face as she held onto the pie.
"I'm not sure, but we've got the most amazing imaginary love life I've ever heard of..." He stopped. "Uh, is that ours?"
"This satanic pie? It looks like it. Why, are you going to eat it? It seems a little shady..." Sam repressed the urge not to toss the pie right onto the strange woman's lawn. She'd have to work on being more neighborly. In her defense, she'd never had to deal with neighbors before.
Danny was staring behind her at something on their front doorstep. Turning around Sam saw that there was a little boy with dark hair sitting with a blue ball that was much too large for his small hands. There was a moment where no one moved; Sam and Danny stood staring at the boy as he sat, curiously watching them with big emerald green eyes.
"I am pretty sure I would remember unpacking a kid." Sam said in response to Danny's earlier question.
"Yeah, well I've learned my lesson about underestimating your mother." Danny responded back.
Sam tugged on his sleeve as she led him to their front steps. The small child didn't seem the slightest bit perturbed that there were two adults making their way toward him with a pie. If anything, it amused him. His green eyes lit up and he smiled a little grin at the two of them.
"She left us a pie and possibly her kid..." Sam muttered to Danny.
Danny shook his head, still watching the small boy. "They've only got one and she's in college."
Sam knelt down in front of the boy with Danny standing behind her. "Hi, I'm Sam. What's your name?"
"Andrew. I'm one, two, three." He counted on his fingers as a demonstration. He looked up at Danny as if to wonder why he had yet to introduce himself.
"Hey Andrew. I'm Danny. Do you know where your mommy is?" Danny questioned, bringing himself to eye level with him. Andrew shook his head so emphatically that his ball went tumbling out of his arms.
Sam turned with a quick, "I'll get it." before she went after the still rolling ball.
Danny followed the small child's wondrous gaze to the woman behind him with a small grin. "That better not be drool, little guy. She's kind of taken."
Andrew simply looked at him before turning back to the long-haired savior who was currently holding his ball. Sam had just gotten in front of the porch when she heard a terrified cry of, "Andrew?! Andrew, where are you?!"
"Over here!" Danny called out. Immediately, a petite woman with light brown hair bolted over from the other side of the fence in lavender nursing scrubs.
"Oh my God. Oh my...Andrew. What are you doing over here?! Mommy has been looking for you everywhere." She embraced Andrew tightly before she brushed his hair back to kiss his forehead.
She turned to them, still hugging her son. "Thank you so much for finding him. His friend Jeremy's family used to live in this house and I think he was looking to play with him. I'm Audrey."
Though she was now attempting a grateful smile, the woman was obviously still distressed and frazzled as a few tears left her eyes. Sam remembered once when Lynne had gotten lost at an art gala. Her younger sister had been no older than Andrew and Sam could remember feeling like such a failure after she had lost her baby sister in the outdoor gardens. Her father, though he attempted not to show it for her sake, was nearly sick with worry.
He ran around searching for her with a few of his business buddies, all of them looking rumpled and sweaty as they searched for her in their expensive suits. She could vividly see her father, patting her ten-year-old self on the head gently as he told her not to worry. She could also remember her mother's completely nonchalant response to finding out that her youngest child had gone missing.
"Everyone knows who we are, Samantha." Her mother had said. "Someone will find her. Until then, you will sit here and you will not toil around in your dress anymore."
Lynne had obviously been found and was completely unharmed, but Sam had never forgotten her mother's complete disregard for her younger sibling and for her own distress. As Sam watched Audrey hug little Andrew, she wondered if her relief was as great as when her father finally found Lynne sleeping under a chair.
"I'm Danny and this is Sam. I'm not sure how long he's been here. We just got in." He turned to Sam. "Speaking of which, the ice cream has probably melted."
Audrey picked Andrew up with a small laugh. "Olivia got to you with a welcome pie? It looks like apple and it's probably good. Crazy woman, decent cook though. Anyway, I'll let you get back to your defrosting groceries. Thank you so much for finding Andrew."
Danny and Sam returned Andrew's goodbye wave before turning back to get their groceries out of the truck. Sam turned around to see that Andrew was still watching them curiously over his mother's shoulders as Audrey retreated back to her own home. They'd successfully met the neighbors that they would be sharing fences with.
The two of them managed to get everything into the house in two trips. Danny and Sam began to put the groceries away, randomly designating where things would go. For the most part Danny just followed Sam's lead as she attempted a similar setup to the one she had in her old apartment.
As she attempted to reach for a shelf that was higher than she anticipated, especially after having taken off her shoes once again, she was grateful when Danny's longer arm reached over her.
"Now look at that. It looks like you'll be handy to have around after all." She focused on her words rather than the way her heart rate sped up slightly as his chest brushed up against her back.
She didn't have to look at him to know he was smirking in amusement. She knew him well enough to know the look that would be on his face. She should have also known that if Danny Fenton was one thing, it was full of surprises.
"Uhm?" Sam questioned as Danny placed a faux white rose wreath on the top of her head. Looking up through her eyelashes she could see one of the flowers nestled on her forehead.
"I'm officially and ceremoniously welcoming you to our home, Mrs. Fenton." Danny declared in mock-seriousness. He did a bow of some sort before taking her hand and shaking it gingerly. Sam did an excellent job of withholding her laughter.
"Are you now?" She laughed. "When did you put this in the basket?"
Turning back to her grocery duties, she decided that their groceries had faired pretty well. Though the ice cream was a little 'creamier' than preferred and the moisture from the frozen things had squished part of Danny's sugar-loaded cereal boxes into a mush, their groceries weren't looking too bad.
"Ah...somewhere in between exasperated sigh number forty-seven and when you just gave up looking into the cart altogether."
Sam smiled. There was no one else she could imagine braving suburbia with. Their neighbor might have been a nosy pie-wielding psychopath with a death wish, they might have nearly inherited a kid, and they might have been fake married for the next eleven months or so, but they still had each other. At this point she was positive that she had to be at least one more plot twist away from her own Lifetime movie.
"And now, you can finish doing this all by yourself." Sam said, gesturing toward the rest of their large haul.
"Wait, why?" Danny asked.
"As punishment for leaving out the fact that you were engaged to the enemy." Sam said, halfway out of the kitchen.
"Almost!" Danny called after her, shutting a cabinet.
She walked into the entryway of the house and breathed in the fresh smell of the new wooden floors. The sun was just beginning to set and it was casting a lovely shadow through the glass panes that framed their front door. She smiled at the dark little wooden table that held a vase and a bunch of faux calla lilies. It reminded her of their meeting with that horrible real estate woman, Vivian Worrill and how Danny had been forced to describe their 'dream wedding'.
Though their initial wedding was the furthest thing from it, as far as weddings went, even counting the one that Danny lied about, she could say that she'd experienced the best. Giving a sigh, Samantha (formerly Manson, now Fenton) carefully traipsed up the stairs to her new house.
Sam was nearly to her room when she heard, "Was that exasperated sigh number forty-eight?" She walked in and shut her door, mentally preparing herself for the rest of the year.
Yes, it had been a sigh, but she was far from exasperated.