Title: Circular Wagering

Author: Alex Foster

Category: General

Pairing: Sam/Freddie

Warnings: None. Unless feet bother you.

Rating: PG

Summary: As far as payoffs went, it wasn't the worst thing they had ever done. Sam and Freddie and a wager that becomes a habit.

Disclaimer: This story is based on characters and situations created and owned by Dan Schneider. No money is being made and no infringement is intended.

Author's Note: This was my first completed entry for the Kink Bingo. The square was Foot/Shoe Fetish. Hope you enjoy and thanks for reading.

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I ain't sayin' it's right. But you're sayin' a foot massage don't mean nothing, and I'm saying it does. Now look, I've given a million ladies a million foot massages, and they all meant something. We act like they don't, but they do, and that's what's so f**king cool about them. There's a sensuous thing going on where you don't talk about it, but you know it and she knows it…

- Pulp Fiction

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It started as a bet.

As far as payoffs went, it wasn't the worst thing they had ever done. That thing with Freddie and the hobo's ratty coat while Sam captured it on video was bad. Sam having to tell Mrs. Benson that she wanted to be a mom just like her one day and then asking for life pointers—while Freddie captured it on video—was pretty bad.

This she could handle.

And thanks to Gibby somehow knowing what the word photopheresis meant, she didn't have to. This one was all on Fredward.

"Let's get this over with," he said, opening and closing his hands and not bothering to hide a grimace.

"Oh no. I want to be good and ready for this one."

Worry started to show on his face. "Clarification of rules. Not at school and certainly not after gym class."

"Not accepted." Sam gave him a smile letting him know he should be scared. "Time for pussyfooting and negotiation was before the bet."

It dragged out for two weeks. She waited until he had almost forgotten about the bet before kicking off her converses and flopping down on the couch. "It's time," she said.

For a second Freddie just stared at her, not comprehending, then his shoulders sagged with realization. It was late and they were riding the high that came after wrapping the show. Carly was still up in the studio helping Spencer deconstruct an ill-advised top heavy sculpture done for Speed Sculpting with Spencer. The living room was theirs.

Freddie moved her legs out of the way, sat next to her, and let her feet drop into his lap. His grimace deepened.

Her toes flexed inside mismatched socks. "A bet is a bet. Get on with it."

His touch was hesitant at first, fingers rolling over the small bones of her ankles while he worked up the courage to move lower. Her back against the couch's arm, Sam held up her iPear and began recording.

"Come on, Fredward, put your back into it. I know you've done this many times with your mom."

He shot her a dark glance that only told her she was dead right, and made her laugh.

His dexterity suddenly increased as he pressed her feet together, palms firm against the sides, and let his fingers interlace. The pads of his thumbs made little circles along her insteps. The pressure was surprising but not unpleasant, deep enough to keep from tickling but not so much that it hurt.

Sam's grip on the iPear slipped a little as a wave of relaxation passed through her. This was quickly shaping up to be one of her better wins.

Freddie pulled her socks off and dropped them on the floor. His hands resumed their manipulations with hardly a break. She flexed her toes again, out of instinct this time, as fingers smoothed along the length of the muscles and tendons of her feet. He was better than David, that kid she hired, at this.

A happy noise slipped free of her throat and they both froze. For a second she wasn't even aware it had come from her. Then she was. It would have been a good time to beg off the bet, massage duration had never been negotiated so they were both free on a technicality, but they locked gazes and some sort of agreement happened without either of them saying a word.

Sam shut the iPear off and he went back to the massage. They didn't make eye contact again; he suddenly found her feet very interesting and she stared at the ceiling and silently decided that maybe Freddie had some uses after all.

It didn't happen again for almost a month. Rehearsal had just ended and Sam lay on the floor while Freddie sat on a beanbag chair next to her. Carly was only a few feet away, her back to them while she packed up costumes. She chatted about the upcoming show and Sam answered her without really paying attention. Freddie focused on his laptop, readying graphics for the webcast.

It suddenly seemed like a good idea to kick him.

Sam poked him twice in the ribs with her bare foot before he grabbed her ankle. He continued to type with his free hand, not bothering to look up from the screen. At first she thought he was going to just hang on and she was aiming to kick him with her other foot when his index and middle finger started moving.

Sam propped herself up on her elbows and glanced at Carly. The other girl was clueless to…whatever this was…happening behind her literal back.

Freddie didn't act like anything was different, but his fingers were rubbing and pressing between her toes. Gently spreading them apart and sending little twinges of happiness up her leg. It felt awkward, wrong, and more than a little exciting.

His fingers slipped down and trailed over the sensitive skin, intentionally tickling her, and caused her to give a short but loud laugh and jerk out of his grip.

Carly closed the trunk and glanced back. "You okay over there?"

Freddie quirked an eyebrow in Sam's direction. "I am," he said.

They fell into an odd routine of sorts after that.

It happened mostly after shows or rehearsals, never at school or during a fight. When Carly was asleep or out of the room, Sam would swing her feet into his lap and he would start to rub. Both without saying a word. It was a comfort thing more than anything else, she figured.

Sam would sometimes glance away from the bad monster movie they were unwinding to and stare at the look of dedication on his face. His fingers moved with sure and steady strokes now; he was enjoying himself. In its own way, it was nice being the center of someone's focus like that—even if it was Freddie's—she decided.

Everything nearly came to an end during a live show. They'd been fighting all day—not the playful kind she rather enjoyed but the spiteful long distance kind of argument that made Carly roll her eyes impatiently at them. The antagonizing kept up through two skits and when Sam intentionally blocked a shot he finally yelled at her from behind the camera.

"Yeah?" She smiled slowly with the knowledge of the power she held over him. "Well, at least I'm not a freaky perv that likes to—"

"Stop it, both of you!" Whether she knew it or not, Carly prevented something much worse than Freddie's first kiss secret from going out to computers worldwide.

Sam was instantly sorry and bit back the words, swallowing them deep. The damage was clear though. Something retreated from his eyes while he looked at her in horror.

Stuck between them was Carly. "Well," she said to the camera, "I don't know about anyone else but I'd like to see that last video again—maybe three or four more times!"

Carly mediated and they made up, of course. But Freddie didn't touch Sam's feet again for weeks. She tried to apologize, in her own way, but he didn't respond when she punched him or poked him or kicked him in the knee.

Nothing else was different between them but that. And Sam didn't have anyone else to ask what to do about it. Certainly not Carly; there wasn't enough wacky gas in the world for that awkward conversation. If it didn't involved Freddie she would have asked him—he was enough of a chick to think of something to help her out. The loss of it from her life was stupid and confusing.

"Five minutes."

Sam glanced up from her place on the couch. "Huh?"

It was late on a Saturday night and they'd been passing the time until Carly got home from her date by watching infomercials. Spencer had long since gone to bed—his date ending early due to some sort of incident involving a centerpiece catching fire at the restaurant. Sam had decided to spend the night because her mom was dating the owner of a deli and she really didn't want to overhear the reasons why they were getting six pounds of pastrami for free every Thursday.

"I bet Carly will walk through that door in the next four minutes," Freddie explained.

"Don't be stupid, Fredwad. Their dumb rom-com hasn't even let out yet—they probably are just getting to the scene where there is a zany misunderstanding that threatens true wuv."

Freddie sighed and rolled his eyes. "I bet you that she'll be home in the next three minutes."

"Wha—oh. Deal." Sam sat up, suddenly interested.

Freddie held up his watch. They both glanced at the door when three minutes wound down. "Well, how about that," he said. "I guess I lose."

"Yeah." She still wasn't sure what he was playing at. "How about that."

Freddie got up and walked to where his jacket hung by the door. He fished around in the pockets for a moment and Sam heard the clink that sounded like a ball bearing inside a glass bottle. Returning to the couch he moved her legs out of the way and took a seat the same way he had several months ago with her feet across his lap.

Sam watched dubiously. The familiar sharp scent of nail polish filled the air.

"I lost the bet," he said, meeting her gaze. She had that weird feeling they were making some sort of unspoken arrangement again. "That means I need to pay up. Right?"

She wasn't sure what to say, or even how to begin, so she just nodded.

That was enough. His hands were on her again—her feet anyway—and he was kneading and stroking. Because there was no fear this time of Carly turning around and catching them, and maybe because she missed it just a little, Sam settled back and closed her eyes. Another happy sound came from the back of her throat but neither paid any attention.

Eventually her socks ended up on the floor again and his fingers lightly moved over bare skin. She became aware that he had dug a handful of cotton balls out of his pocket—let it never be said Fredward Benson didn't come prepared—and slipped them between her toes.

Sam glanced over her knees at him; knowing that she had no idea of the color he was about to paint her toenails. He had a little grin on his face as he worked, it was easy and faint like he didn't even know it was there. Something about that made her smile too.

It was maddening how good he was at this. The model of concentration he moved the little brush smoothly over her nails and did a much better job than she could ever have hoped to on her own. When he finished, Freddie blew gently over her toes to help the polish dry.

Sam laughed and couldn't stop her toes from curling. She left her feet sitting in his lap though. For a long while they stayed like that, strangely comfortable with each other. "You made a pretty dumb bet there, Fredward."

He nodded. "Yeah, I suppose I did."

End