iAm a Mess

His dark brown eyes glare into her crystal blue ones. "Why are you here?"

"I don't know," she whispers. She kicks the toy that has settled down beside her foot, if she can't stay safe and comfortable then why should it be able to?

"Sam," he responds immediately. He takes one of her fragile-for-a-tough-girl hands in his own. "Sam, you can't keep doing this to yourself." His fingers trace the slices on her palm.

She stares up at him. "I don't know how to stop."

Ooo

It all starts at a young age.

They call it a tragic event, and explain to her that millions of people go through the same thing as her every year. Yeah, right, she scoffs. Her experience is hers and only hers- she's so sure that no one's ever been through the same thing.

"I know what you're going through," the dorky boy that's friends with Carly tells her.

She glares at him. "No, you don't. You have no idea, so don't even try to give me that!"

"Why are you so mean all the time?" Freddie challenges. He steps directly into her path. "Scared?"

She kicks his foot, barely enough to even cause pain. She's so weak right now. "Sam Puckett does not get scared."

"Then why are you mean?" He's almost begging by now.

Her eyes flicker, and for a fraction of a second she almost considers telling him. Then she remembers. "It's none of your business." She gives him a slight half- nod. "Carly's inside."

Then she turns and walks off, flipping her tendrils of blonde curls over her shoulder.

Ooo

Her new therapist says she has trust issues.

Sam doesn't even know what that means, but her eleven-year-old lips form the words as she repeats it.

"Yes," the therapist with the crazy old-man afro tells her."You have difficulty trusting others."

She considers this for a second. "I don't! I tell my best friend Carly everything!"

"Everything?" The therapist questions, and for a second Sam realizes that this therapist has her figured out. "Did you tell her about the incident a few years ago? With your…"

Sam cuts her off quickly. "No. I didn't, and I don't plan to anytime soon."

"You don't trust her, then?" The therapist deduces.

"I don't see how it's any of your business," Sam replies coldly. "I don't like when people try to figure me out, it won't work, just trust me."

"How am I supposed to do that when you can't trust others?" The therapist replies coolly.

Eyes flashing silvery ice blue, she yells, "I CAN'T HELP IT! MY DAD, HE WANTED TO LEAVE ME!"

"Sam, that's not true," The therapist tells her.

"It's true," Sam's calmed down a bit now. "I'll be going now."

She turns and leaves, not even bothering to pay the receptionist with the money her mother gave her. It's not like she ever pays for anything anyway.

Ooo

She never tells anyone this, but sometimes she feels like Freddie might know her better than Carly.

But then she dismisses this thought, it can't be true.

"Hey, Sam," The brunette with the plump pink lips greets her as she walks into the apartment. "Want some ham?"

She licks her lips happily (a fake happiness). "Sure, why not?"

Carly walks over and pulls a tray out, setting it down in front of the blonde. "Anything new?"

"No, of course not," Sam responds (Carly can't see she's lying, can she?). "Nothing's ever new. Just the boring life of Sam Puckett."

"Oh." Carly nods a little. "Girly Cow's on."

"Terrific." Sam watches the funny show through jaded eyes. She doesn't laugh the whole time, but it doesn't really matter because her laughter would be masked anyway by Carly's girly giggles.

Freddie walks in then. "Hey, girls."

"Hey, dork," Sam retorts automatically. She can sense him taking in her messed up hair, the dark circles under her eyelids, and the red blotches on her face from crying (in private, of course, she doesn't ever cry in public)- and she can tell that he knows, even though she doesn't want to.

When Carly gets up during a commercial break to check on Spencer like he's some little child, Freddie turns to her. "What's going on, Sam?"

"Why are you talking to me?" She mutters, hands in her lap.

"Your dad's funeral was yesterday, wasn't it?" Freddie's smarter than he lets on. "That's why you didn't show up for rehearsal."

She lifts her head up. "I don't see how it's any of your business."

"Why?" Freddie explodes. "Can't you tell me anything? You've been telling me the same thing for years, that it's none of my business, but maybe it is my business because I care about YOU!"

"I've got to go," She murmurs, baffled by his outburst.

"No, you don't," Freddie tells her. "You're just saying that because you can't allow yourself to get close to anyone."

Finally, she regains some of her usual fire and meets his eyes. "What does it matter to you? Why do you try so hard to get close to me?"

"You know," he says slowly, shaking his head. "You know, I don't know anymore."

With hardly even another glance over his shoulder, he turns and leaves the apartment. Carly comes back downstairs a few minutes after he leaves. She glances around, confused. "Where's Freddie?"

"At the bottom of a lake, hopefully," Sam replies absently. It doesn't have the same fire as her other insults.

"Sam," Carly reprimands. "I've told you time and time again that Freddie is a respected member of the iCarly crew…"

But she isn't listening; because she knows this (she just doesn't use her knowledge).

Ooo

It's not until freshman year that she realizes there's something wrong with her (and coincidentally, so does he).

She craves attention, just as much as the next person (or maybe even more), she just has a funny way of showing it. Her way of showing it is with the razor blades that dig into her skin, making deep red cuts with ruby red blood that oozes out and drips onto napkins with hearts on them, leaving red splotches in the middle (just like her heart, isn't it?).

She's only been doing it for half a year when he realizes it.

"What is this, Sam?" he demands angrily.

She shrugs nonchalantly, acting like it's no big deal, but really it is, it's the biggest deal to her. "Frothy clawed me."

"Don't give me that crap, Sam!" He replies icily. "This isn't healthy."

"You think I don't know that?" She growls. "You think I don't know that it's not good for me? Actually, I don't give a crap whether it's good for me or not, and neither do you- or anyone else."

He stands there, bewildered. "How could you think that? I've told you time and time again that I care about you-"

"And I've told you time and time again I don't believe you!" She exclaims. "You've got Carly and that's all you need-"

"We're just friends, Sam!" Freddie assures her. "Just like you and I-"

She barks a laugh. "You and I? We're hardly friends."

"How could you say that?" Freddie looks taken aback. "I mean, maybe our friendship isn't the same as anyone else's, but you, you're not the same as anyone else either."

Sam just shakes her head slowly back and forth. "I don't want to talk about this."

"You never want to talk about anything," He reminds her. "You don't get emotional about anything, well, except when you're dragging razors across your skin-"

"You don't know that it's razors," Sam mutters. "You don't know anything about me."

He shakes his head, a confident smirk appearing on his face. "But I do. It was razors, wasn't it? And I probably know you better than Carly. Carly believed your story about Frothy, didn't she?"

She hates to admit that he's right, so she just frowns. Scowling, she drags her foot across the floor. "I don't care."

Lie.

Ooo

Her mom comes home with yet another boyfriend the following year.

She doesn't want her mom to replace her dad, so she just goes over to Carly's and pretends everything's all right again.

Freddie's there to ruin her fantasy though.

Carly goes to feed Spencer's goldfish, leaving her with him again. He peers deep into her blue eyes. "What's wrong, Sam?"

Sighing, she just gives up, remembering his relentlessness. "My mom brought home another boyfriend today."

"And it feels like she's trying to replace your dad, doesn't it?" Freddie asks gently.

She scowls. "How do you know?"

"I told you, I know what you're going through," He says it oh-so-gently, as if she's some fragile thing that's going to break any second.

"Shut up!" She barks, and he looks at her with his wide puppy-dog brown eyes, as if wondering what he did wrong. "Just shut up, all right? You don't know what I'm going through! Your dad left a few days after you were born. You never got the chance to really know him. He didn't commit… kill himself because of you, he didn't leave this world completely because of you. You never had to see his frozen face in the coffin, you never had to see it and realize that you're never, ever gonna see him again. So don't tell me you know what I'm going through." A tear sneaks down her face, and she turns her face to look away from him.

"Sam, look at me," he commands.

She's silent for a moment before she finally replies stonily, "I don't want you to see me cry."

He puts an arm around her back and pulls her close to him. She punches his arm, but he doesn't let go. "Sam, I'm sorry."

"You should be," She says, wriggling under his grip. "When did you get so strong?"

He just shook his head. "Not important. You've been feeling this way for a while, haven't you?"

"Maybe I have," She finally looks at him through tear-stained eyes. "When did you turn into a therapist?"

"I told you a while ago that I wanted to be one," Freddie reminds her. "Weren't you listening?"

She shook her head. "No."

"Why?" He asks finally, after minutes of just staring at her.

"Why what? Why didn't I listen to you? You bore me," She twiddles with a loose piece of thread on her jacket sleeve.

"No," He stares at her. "Why don't you care about me?"

"You'll hurt me," She responds immediately. "I know it. I've got to go."

And he just watches her as she leaves (running away from her problems, as always).

Ooo

She comes over to his place one day, totally broken and confused.

His dark brown eyes glare into her crystal blue ones. "Why are you here?"

"I don't know," she whispers. She kicks the toy that has settled down beside her foot, if she can't stay safe and comfortable then why should it be able to?

"Sam," he responds immediately. He takes one of her fragile-for-a-tough-girl hands in his own. "Sam, you can't keep doing this to yourself." His fingers trace the slices on her palm.

She stares up at him. "I don't know how to stop."

"Listen to me," He pleads. "Sam, I love you, you've got to find a way to stop."

She shakes her head. "I don't believe that."

"Why?" He pleads. "Can't you just trust me?"

"No," She shakes her head slowly, staring at him. "No, I can't. You've hurt me a lot in the past, Fredward."

He slides his fingers through hers. "I didn't mean to."

"I don't want to," She replies. "I don't want to give it all up yet, it's going to take some time…"

He nods. "I'll be there for you the whole time."

"I'm a mess, Freddie," She peers up at him. "You can't love a mess like me."

"It's entirely possible," He contradicts her (as he always does).

She finally smiles a little bit, for the first time in a while. "I…I love you too. But.."

"But what?" he questions.

"I don't know how to do this," She gestures to their entwined hands.

"We'll make it work," He promises. "We'll make it work, in our own special little way."

She nods just a little bit, and together they walk off (to face their uncertain future). His arm wraps around her protectively, and she feels like he's giving her just a little bit of the protection she never got from her father.

Finish.

This was kind of a follow up to iTrust You.

Oh, so OOC *shudders* but…it wasn't that bad, I guess. It took a while to write.

Let me know what you think, review!

:D