Author's Note: Greetings, fellow iCarly fans! Apart from my Creddie one-shot 'iHave A Snowball Fight', this is officially my first iCarly fanfic. I have decided to write a story in honour of my favourite Bollywood film 'Kuch Kuch Hota Hai'which loosely translated means, 'Something Happens In My Heart'. I'm not going to go into great detail about the plot of the film here. Hopefully the story will spell it out, but if you're still confused, feel free to PM me and I'll answer any questions you may have. This story does follow from some iCarly canon, but it is kind've an AU story because it's set in the future. For the sake of my own personal moral compass, I feel I must say from the start that this is ultimately a Creddie story with some Seddie in the beginning and the middle. I really hope you all will give this story a chance inspite of that pronouncement because I really do believe that it could be a great love story for both iCarly ships. I'm posting the first 3 chapters now because I'm still currently writing a major Disney and Nickelodeon cross-over in the Suite Life category called 'Manhunt', which happens to include our favourite iCarly trio too. Feel free to read it if you feel any inclination to do so. Okay, deep breath, I hope you guys like this. Take it away...
25 June, 2017
Freddie stood alone at the tombstone, clutching an umbrella tightly in his hand. So far, it was doing the job of keeping the drizzle off of his expensive black suit, purchased just for this occasion. In a stretch limo parked just a few meters away at the cemetery gates sat his mother in the backseat, clutching her baby granddaughter closely to her chest while she rocked her to sleep. But even this close proximity did not comfort Freddie, for he had never felt more alone in the universe until this very moment.
He glanced down at the newly carved tomb stone. The inscription etched into it only served to remind him of other words spoken to him a life time ago:
"Come on, you dork. Why don't we call a truce and just be friends? Whaddya say?" she asked of him with a cheeky grin on her face, extending her hand towards him.
If only he hadn't reached out of his own accord and grasped her hand firmly in his. Could he have somehow changed all of this? At this moment, Freddie was inclined to believe that it was possible. He read the inscription once more, the pain stabbing at him like a million knives into his head and chest:
Here lies Samantha Puckett-Benson
Born: 14 April 1993
Died: 18 June 2017
"I'm really sorry, Mr. Benson. We did everything we could for your wife. With the haemorrhaging after giving birth and the internal bleeding, she's lucky to have survived it at all. We knew from the start that this was going to be a dangerous pregnancy." Dr. Harris explained sadly, her eyes reflecting sincere empathy.
"How much time does she have?" Freddie asked of Dr. Harris in a soft murmur.
"A few days, maybe a few weeks," Dr. Harris responded.
"And the baby?" Freddie asked anxiously.
"The baby's vitals are good. She's going to be just fine, Mr. Benson." Dr. Harris responded calmly…
Freddie couldn't argue with the last line of the tombstone inscription. Despite only spending 3 short weeks with her newborn child, no one had seen or known a more devoted mother than Sam. From the moment her baby girl had been born, Sam hadn't let her out of sight. On those few nights when she had enough strength, Freddie had watched her from the corner of the hospital room while she held her little miracle in her strong arms, cooing and singing a lullaby to her in a soft murmur. For 3 short weeks, Sam had loved their baby fiercely and would continue to do so till the end of time.
When the end had drawn near, Sam had called Freddie aside into the hospital room which had now become her home. They still hadn't given their baby girl a name after three weeks. In the meanwhile, Sam had given her all kinds of names on a whim like 'Baby Girl', 'Her Dumpling' and Freddie's personal favourite, 'Little Miss Nobody'.
"I want you to promise me something," Sam began in that fierce tone of hers which let Freddie know that she meant business.
"Anything," Freddie whispered meekly while kissing her forehead.
"Promise me that you'll get over this someday. That you won't let this ruin any chances of happiness for you and our baby in the future. I'm not telling you to get remarried right away and hang up your next wife's portrait above our bed before I'm cold in the grave. But I don't want you to be alone forever." Sam stated in a teasing manner.
"That's not remotely funny, Sam." Freddie responded tersely.
"You're right, but I still need you to promise me." Sam reiterated seriously.
"I can't promise you that," Freddie replied dejectedly, the tears running steadily down his face.
Sam reached over and caressed his cheek firmly with her hand, an IV drip protruding from it.
"Fine, that wasn't so much of a deal breaker. But this next one kinda is," she admitted meekly.
"There's more?" Freddie asked, laughing in spite of himself.
"Just one more. This concerns our baby girl." Sam replied seriously.
"What is it?" Freddie asked curiously.
"We can't go on calling her 'Little Miss Nobody', even though it has a nice ring to it. She needs a real name." Sam persisted with a smile on her face.
"What do you suggest?" Freddie asked, humouring her.
"I want you to name our daughter Carly." Sam declared.
Freddie, who had lent over to rest his head on his wife's stomach, glanced up at her sharply.
"Are you sure?" he asked meekly.
Sam nodded vigorously, the tears beginning to run steadily down her cheeks now.
"I've thought long and hard about this. I need you to promise me this, Freddie." She stated assertively, grasping his hand firmly.
To her surprise, Freddie shook out of her grasp, got off the hospital bed and began pacing the floor rapidly.
"Freddie, promise me." Sam urged impatiently.
"No," Freddie retorted waspishly, his expression turning livid.
"Why should I promise you anything, Sam? When you broke your promises to me! That's not fair!" Freddie shouted angrily, glancing back at her.
"Freddie," Sam chided soothingly.
"No, don't you 'Freddie' me, Sam. When we made our marriage vows, you said forever, Sam. When we decided to have a baby, you promised me that we were going to raise our family together. You broke your promise, Sam." Freddie choked, the tears streaming down his cheeks too.
Unbeknown to him, Sam had raised herself out of the bed and came to stand before him, a smile on her face.
"No, don't you dare smile at me, Sam! You can't smile at me like that and change this. If I had known things were gonna turn out this way, I wouldn't have married you in the first place," Freddie stated callously, hoping his words would sting just enough to make Sam retreat.
They didn't. In fact, Sam moved all the closer to her husband and put her arms around his waist, hugging him tighter to her own body.
"Liar," she murmured teasingly, knowing this would appease him.
"Okay, that was a lie. Let's face it, nothing could've kept me away from you, even then. But I can't do this," Freddie wheezed painfully, feeling like his chest was on fire.
"Yes you can, Freddie. I need you to be strong for me, for our baby. Because I can't…" Sam choked, crying even harder now.
"I'm so sorry." She whispered frantically, cupping Freddie's face with her hands.
We were thinking that we'd never be apart
With your name tattooed across my heart
Whoa, who would've thought it would end up like this?
Freddie hugged her tightly for a few more seconds before reluctantly picking her up in his arms and placing her back in bed once more. Sam pulled Freddie back down onto the bed with her, cradling his head in her hands, rocking him slowly to and fro.
"I'm sorry we wasted so much time, Freddie. I wish we had more time. But I need you to know something: I don't regret choosing you. You're my life; you're my everything. And I'm going to love you with my last breath and long after that." Sam responded determinedly, kissing the top of his forehead.
But everything we've talked about is gone
And the only chance we have of moving on
Let's try to take it back before it all went wrong
"I'm sorry I couldn't save you," Freddie murmured painstakingly into her hands.
Sam brought his face upwards with her hands till it was level with hers.
"You did save me, Fredward Benson." She responded frankly, kissing his forehead.
Before the worst, before we met
Before our hearts decided it's time to love again
Before today, before too long
Let's try to take it back before it all went wrong…
"I promise you, Sam. Our daughter will know just how much her mother loved her. She'll know how much I love you..." Freddie murmured fiercely, looking her dead in the eye.
"I'm counting on that, Freddie." Sam murmured back, a mysterious twinkle in her eye.
"Come on, you know I can't stand to see you cry," Sam persisted chidingly, rubbing Freddie's back soothingly with her IV-drip-free hand.
"Well, tough. You're the one who's breaking my heart. Deal with it," Freddie retorted facetiously, his face shiny with tears.
Please don't leave me
Please don't leave me
"Come on, you dork. Why don't we call a truce and just be friends? Whaddya say?" Sam asked nostalgically, holding her hand out to him.
Instead of grasping her hand, Freddie leant forward and kissed her full on the mouth, savouring her taste for one last time. It seemed surreal to him that she felt more alive than ever in this moment when they both knew what was coming. Sam continued kissing him through her tears, wrapping her arms tightly around his neck.
I forgot to say out loud
How beautiful you really are to me
I can't be without…
And I need you
"I love you so much, Freddie." She murmured wistfully.
"I love you, Sam Puckett. You were the first girl to ever break my arm and my heart in one lifetime. Just because you're not gonna be here, doesn't mean that I'll stop loving you. You're not getting off that easily." Freddie warned fiercely, hugging her closely to his chest.
"I wouldn't have it any other way, Tech Nerd." Sam stated teasingly, laughing slowly through her tears.
I always say how I don't need you
But it's always gonna come right back to this
Please don't leave me
They stayed like that for a long time, holding one another, memorising and compartmentalising their last moments together. He held her close all the while, singing her favourite song slowly in her ear. And when it was time, he laid her gently back onto the bed and covered her with a blanket, tucking stray tresses of her golden hair behind her ear.
After the warm sensation of that hospital room, Freddie pulled himself abruptly back to the present, where he stood in the pouring rain and shivering. Perhaps the hospital room hadn't been warm after all, but merely an after glow of Sam's final presence there. Not being able to look at the headstone anymore, Freddie turned away and trudged back towards the car. He climbed into the backseat where his mother sat with his daughter laying asleep in her arms.
"Thanks for waiting, Mom." Freddie stated graciously.
"You're welcome, honey. I will always be here for you and Carly, Freddie." Marissa responded seriously.
"I know, Mom, thank you. That would make Sam happy too." Freddie replied genuinely, looking his mother directly in the eyes.
Marissa nodded vigorously, her eyes brimming with tears.
"It's been a long day. Let's get you home," she suggested firmly and gave the driver instructions that would lead back to Freddie and Sam's loft apartment.
It had been 3 weeks since the funeral and Freddie still hadn't held little Carly once. Marissa noted that he asked constantly about Carly (how she was, if she was sleeping okay etc), but he hadn't touched her. Marissa understood all too well that her only son was still in the early stages of his grief over his young wife and didn't want to pressurise him into anything. But she also knew that his interaction with Carly in the early stages of her development was pivotal to the both of them.
It was exactly a month after Sam's funeral when Freddie awoke in the early hours of the morning and heard his daughter crying from her crib in the nursery next door. He waited a few seconds, feeling sure that his mother was in close proximity and would remedy the situation. When Carly kept crying after a few more seconds, Freddie decided to go and inspect. He blinked sleep out of his eyes as he approached the bedroom where his mother slept. She lay sprawled out on her stomach, clearly in a deep sleep. Freddie felt extremely guilty, thinking to himself how his mother had done virtually all the cooking, cleaning and taking care of Carly since she had moved into the apartment a month ago. His own mother who was so set in her ways, had opted to move from Seattle to San Francisco, to be with him in his time of need. In his grief, he hadn't even noticed how much strain she had been taking recently.
After entering the nursery, he switched on the light and approached the crib. Little Carly was kicking and writhing in her crib, her face screwed up, beet red and screaming at the top of her lungs. At first, all Freddie could do was stare at her, feeling very helpless and forlorn. He finally snapped out of his reverie when he realised that his mother might soon wake and come check on the noise. At her age, she needed her beauty sleep.
Freddie took a deep breath and bent over the crib very slowly. He reached out his hands towards Carly and gingerly picked her up, being careful to support her neck. In another second, she was cradled against his chest, howling louder than ever, her tiny fists balled up tightly. Freddie began walking around the small room and swinging her gently to get her to stop crying. He checked her nappy (still clean) and tried to get her to drink from her bottle. But little Carly still wouldn't take the bait.
Growing tired himself, Freddie finally sat down in a rocking chair that he and Sam had bought from an antique shop during her pregnancy. Something about the rhythmic swaying of the chair seemed to tell little Carly that it was more comfortable than the crib in any event. But still, she continued to cry and whimper. Freddie tried every lullaby he could've think of, but Carly paid him no attention while she continued crying.
Then he remembered a silly song that Sam had made him sing to her belly when she was in her second trimester. That had been the first time that Sam had felt the baby kicking after the two of them had found out from Dr. Harris that they were expecting a girl. After clearing his throat several times, Freddie began singing softly to Carly, getting a steady rhythm going with the rocking chair at the same time. After a while, Carly stopped crying and stared up at him with wide eyes, listening to his voice.
She was still awake by the time he was finished, never once taking her eyes off of him. He automatically smiled back at her.
"Hey there, pretty girl," he crooned delicately, rocking her slowly in his arms.
"I'm sorry I haven't held you like this since you were first born. Daddy was just sad because of Mommy. Not because he didn't love you. But I'm gonna make you a promise. From now, Daddy's always gonna be here for you, no matter what. I love you so much, Carly Benson. You're my girl." Freddie murmured softly, the tears falling slowly down his face while gazing at his daughter.
Finally, Carly closed her eyes and drifted off to sleep. Freddie decided not to put her back in the crib, but continued sitting in the rocking chair with her, swaying to and fro.
And from there on, father and daughter were inseparable.
Musical References (in order of appearance):
The Script – Before The Worst
Pink - Please Don't Leave Me
Author's Note: Alright, what did you guys think? I hope the beginning wasn't too morbid for you. The story definitely does pick up from here on out. I would definitely appreciate your input on how I characterise an older Sam because she's extremely pivotal to this story. My favourite scenes were the ones between Sam and Freddie in the hospital and the bonding between Freddie and little Carly. I think Freddie would make a great father, despite what 'iPie' would lead us to believe ; ) Marissa will also feature predominantly in this story. I've decided to tone her down and make her less kooky than she is in iCarly, but there will still be some crazy antics or two in later chapters : ) This chapter is dedicated to everyone out there who's ever lost someone they've loved in their lives, whether it be a parent, a grandparent, a sibling, a friend or a lover. Stay tuned for more iCarly characters next chapter.