Disclaimer: So not mine.

a/n: So I know The Powers That Be (AKA creator of iCarly) has stated that Spencer started taking care of Carly when she was twelve... buuut I'd already started writing this and I liked it too much to pay attention to canon. ;) Just be Spongebob and use your imaginations! :D It'll be fun. Promise. Review if you like/don't like/have suggestions/critique. I'm not sure if I got Spencer's character right, so please let me know. Thanks, and enjoy!


Chapter 1


So, there was a small child on my lap.

This, just so you know, was strange for many reasons. In fact, it was strange for so very many reasons, I may just have to make a helpful list. They encourage the thought process, y'know, or so my fourth grade science teacher said. But I don't know why I even bothered to believe him about the list thing, since he totally crushed my Science Fair dreams by telling me it couldn't involve anything flammable. Did he not realize that my presence pretty much made anything flammable?

I rest my case.

Anyway. What was I saying? Oh, yeah… my super-duper list of Reasons Why Having a Small Child in my Lap is Very Strange, written and produced by Spencer Shay. Drum roll, please?

Reason Numero Uno: You would probably assume that it was my child. It wasn't. I promise. (I should also probably stop referring to Carly as 'it.' She did have a gender. Which was female, in case pronouns confused you.)

Reason Nombre Deux: I wasn't used to… holding children with my appendages. I was afraid she would, like, fall off and bust her head open and then Dad would sue me.

I would not put it past him.

Reason Zahl Drei: Carly's Barbie was shoved half-in my pocket, and its demon hands were poking my ribcage… demonically. This was both strange and uncomfortable. Why did she insist on carrying around a Barbie doll, anyway? It was so creepy looking. I just wanted to make use of my flammable powers and burn it to a crisp.

Heeey, that kinda made it sound like I was a superhero… Flammable Man! Able to set fire to things and… and, um… and look awesomely handsome while doing it!

Or flammable-y handsome. Whichever.

Reason Numero Quattro: Women kept giving me sympathetic looks. Okay, it might've had something to do with the fact that Carly had her Sad Face™ on (why yes, I have trademarked Car-lay's sad face. Problemo?), and that she wouldn't look anywhere except out the window behind us. I kept trying to make her giggle, you know, with my Flammable Man powers— they extend to making small children laugh. No chiz. Except it wasn't exactly working. Aw, Carls. I should seriously buy her some ice cream whenever we get to our stop.

Which reminded me… I needed a car. Desperately. I hadn't thought about it for that entire list thingy, and, while impressive, this was also scary. Socko threatened to punch me in the face if I kept talking about needing a car, but…

I totally needed a car.

Reason Nummer Vijf: I saved the strangest for last. It's like the best for last, only, um, strange. Anyway, see, the strangest/weirdest/zaniest/bizarre-st part about having a small child taking up space in my lap is that… well, she's kind of supposed to. 'Cause it's not good for little girls to wander around on a city bus without their legal guardians.

Yeah. Legal guardian. I said it.

I know what you're thinking. No, seriously, I do. It probably amounts to something like, "Whaaat? No chiz. Get outta here. Spencer, did you hit yourself in the head with an electric drill again?"

…For the record, that last part has a good explanation. Really.

But that's not the point! Electronic tools do not have anything to do with the fact that I pretty much own the child sitting on me right now and wow does that sound inappropriate.

Ahem. That last thought sounded pretty freaked out, didn't it? Well, that just goes to show my awesomely-awesome-fills-you-with-awe acting skills. Because I'm not freaked out. Why would I be freaked out? It's not like I'm some kinda unmarried guy raising a kid in an apartment paid for by my Colonel of a dad 'cause my mom chose a really inconvenient time to run off and scare Carly out of her tiny little impressionable mind.

I'm not freaked. I'm cool. Cool like a cucumber. Ohm.

Do cucumbers go 'ohm'?

"…Spencer?"

Oh look, distraction. I looked down at Carly, who was blinking up at me, and I couldn't help but wince a little at the braid in her hair I'd tried to do this morning when she asked. Thaaat would be fun to untangle. I didn't… do braids very well… "Yeah, kiddo?"

She frowned, and then stuck her thumb in her mouth. Aw, man. She hadn't done that in forever, not since Dad first got deployed. Talking around her thumb, Carly mumbled, "I want Mom."

…And I am officially not a cucumber any more.

Not even one that goes 'ohm.'

I fumbled around in my brain trying to come up with an answer to that. How did you answer that? Did I even have to answer, since it was more of a statement than a question? Ah, small children confuse me!

But luckily for me, I didn't have to think about it much longer (if Socko were here, he would have to insert something like, "Or your brain would explode." Ha ha, Socksey. So funny). That would be because the bus we were riding on due to my car-lacking-ness screeched to a stop, and the very burly driver yelled, "Get off!"

It's so hard to find good civil servants these days.

"Heeey Carly let's go!" I said in a rush, stood up, transferred her clumsily to my hip, and then tripped over a lady's handbag. Smoooooth moves, Spencer Shay.

"Yeah, um, sorry about that," I told the very bleached-blonde woman, who just stared at me. I get that a lot. Then the bus driver glared at me so hard that if he were a villain in a comic book, I would be a pile of formless matter oozing around on the floor right now, so I thought it might be wise to actually leave the bus area. Carly clenched her fingers in my shoulders as I carried her off, her demon Barbie barely clinging to my pocket.

If it fell, I was so not stopping to pick it up.

Take that, Barbie.

"I'm hungry," Carly told me, while I jostled my way past a hobo. What is it with this city and homeless vagabonds? The bus took off behind us with a lovely belch of exhaust, so I almost didn't hear her continue, "I want lunch."

"But you ate yesterday," I joked. Ah, no laugh. She just stared at me, knowing that she would get food anyway. Darn her smarts. "Okay. How 'bout some… ice cream!"

She didn't say anything. Dude, why is she not rejoicing? "…Ice cream!" I repeated.

Carly sighed and laid her head down on my neck. "Ice cream is for dessert, Spencer. I want lunch."

…She cannot be my sister.

"Car-lay!" I shrieked, my voice upping a pitch. Wow, that's embarrassing. Mental note: must not inform Socko of my occasional lapses in manliness. "Ice cream is good any time! Look—" I stopped, which was also convenient for me as we were at a crosswalk, and pointed cross the street. "That's The Ice Cream Palace! Not castle, not fortress, not even citadel, palace. Don't you wanna go?"

She stared at the violently-orange building for a second. "No. I want a peanut butter sandwich. Can I have a peanut butter sandwich? But no jelly, please."

What. Is. Wrong. With. This. Child.

The green-means-go sign blinked, which I took as my cue to cross the street and not get hit by a car. Did I even have any peanut butter? Did I even have any bread?

"Pit stop!" I yelled out loud. Carly winced; I patted her head in apology. I did that a lot with my last girlfriend until she threatened to punch me because it made her feel like a dog. Which would be why she was my last girlfriend, not my current girlfriend. I wheeled to the left, aiming for the shop I knew must have some kind of edible things inside. "We need more food. I'm kind of running out. Shopping adventure time!"

Carly didn't say anything. Okay, this is so not going well. Maybe I'm not enthusiastic enough? Perhaps a different inflection was in order. "Shopping adventure TIME!"

"I heard you," she said quietly. "Can we get milk, please? I have milk with my peanut-butter sandwiches."

"You healthy little thing, you." I frowned at the shop's door, which required the use of hands I was busy holding Carls with. Whatever, I needed my daily dose of ninja anyway. I raised my knee to press the handle and then kicked it the rest of the way in.

Crash!

"What is this?!" I yelped, hopping away from the door at the sound. Crashes are never good. "Who keeps stuff behind the door?!"

Carly leaned over, peering though the glass door that I'd let swing closed again in shock. "There's a man coming. He looks mad."

Uh-oh. I backed up, hiking Carls higher up on my hip. "Um, look Carls, it's time for a fun game. It's called Book It."

"Go go go!" Carly yelled. Oh yeah, we'd played that game before. A… few times. Oops. So, with a large, angry looking guy with a large amount of bulk on him started shaking his fist at me, I did what any sane twenty-year-old guy who was legally-guardian-ing his little sis would do with the glass door still between him and me.

I booked it.

Oh, Dad was so going to sue me.