Summary: An alternate way "iQuit iCarly" could have gone. Sam and Carly do not reconcile, and Freddie chooses Carly. What will Sam do now that she's lost her friends? Sam-centric. AU. OOC.
Disclaimer: iCarly belongs to Dan Schneider and Nickelodeon.
Sam: "…Well if you meant everything you said, then I don't even get why you'd want to be friends with me."
Carly: "And back at ya."
Sam: "Okay then."
~from 'iQuit iCarly'
Chapter 1: iTalk to Dad
The phone only rang once before it was answered. It was always like that with Dad. No matter how busy he was or who was in front of him, he would answer his phone on the first ring whenever I called. That was one of the reasons I loved him so much.
"Hey, princess. What's up?" he asked. His voice was genuinely happy. He never once answered the phone in a hurried, annoyed, or distracted voice. He was always willing to talk with me.
"Are you busy, D?" I asked casually. I knew that he most likely was busy. After all, he was a big shot lawyer in San Francisco. But I always asked for formality's sake.
"Never for you," he replied as he usually did. It made me smile. But this call wasn't the usual catching up. I was going to need a lot of his time.
"Actually, Dad, I've got something big to discuss with you. It will take a while. Why don't you give me a call when you have some time set aside—
"Hang on," he replied hurriedly. Then he must have put his hand over the mouthpiece because his voice was muffled as he said, "Louise!"
"Yes, sir!" said a muffled female voice a few seconds later.
"Reschedule the rest of my meetings for the day," said Dad's muffled voice.
"B-but, sir. This will be the second time we'll reschedule on Mr. Thomas. We might lose him as a client if we reschedule on him again." I heard Dad sigh.
"That's right," Dad's muffled voice sounded annoyed. "Send Gordon in for me."
"What? But sir, he just started—
"He was the best intern I've ever had working for me before I asked him to join this firm. He'll do fine. Tell him that I'm giving him the Thomas case."
"Yes, sir," said Louise's voice resignedly.
"Princess? You still there?" Dad's voice asked clearly through my phone's receiver.
"You do know that I could still hear you even if you cover the mouthpiece, right?" I asked, raising an eyebrow even though he couldn't see it.
"Of course I'm aware that you could hear me. I only covered the mouthpiece so my yelling won't hurt your pretty little ear." I could hear the smile in his words.
"Figured as much. But D, you didn't need to cancel all your meetings," I argued.
"Nonsense! You're more important than some corporate manager trying to get out of embezzlement charges," he stated easily.
"Need I remind you that you represent those greedy corporate managers," I countered with a smirk.
"Please don't, or I'll have to buy myself another boat just to forget." I could just picture the same smirk on his face as he spoke. "So what's troubling you, sweetheart?" I hesitated for a second.
"Carly and I had a fight, D," I said dejectedly.
"Oh, honey. I'm sorry to hear that," he said sincerely. "Just give it a few days, I'm sure when you both cool down, you'll be best friends again, and you'll be closer than ever." I knew he was trying to cheer me up, but it didn't work.
"I'm not sure that will happen this time, Dad. It was a pretty big fight. I think I lost her as a friend for good. We even decided to end iCarly since our last show was a disaster."
"Oh," was all he said. I knew he was trying to figure out what to say to make things better. "So, what do you want to do now?" he finally asked. Again, I hesitated.
"I…I want to go live with you." He was silent for a few seconds.
"Sammy, are you sure that's what you really want? Don't get me wrong, I would love nothing more than to have both my baby girls here with me. But have you really thought this through?"
"I…." I didn't know how to answer him. He must have sensed my hesitation so he continued speaking.
"How long has it been since your fight?" he asked gently.
"Our first fight was two days ago. We had another blow out during the web show yesterday."
"How about you give it another day or two, Sammy. Wait it out until the weekend is over at least," he suggested. "Make sure that leaving Seattle is what you really want to do. Who knows, maybe you and Carly will make up later today or tomorrow. Again, don't get me wrong. I've been asking you to come live with me and your sister for years. I want you here. Melly and I both want you here. But you always tell us that you have to stay in Seattle to take care of your mother. And I'm proud of you for doing that, Sammy. It shouldn't have been your responsibility but you took it upon yourself anyway, even when you needed to be taken cared of yourself," he said proudly, making me blush.
"I didn't do much—
"You did a lot. If it wasn't for you, I think your mother would have died or been put in jail years ago." I was suddenly filled with fear and worry.
"Do you…do you think that would happen if I left her?" I asked hesitantly, fearing the answer.
"No," he answered. "A few years ago, definitely. But over the years, she's gotten better. And that's all thanks to you, by the way. Plus, I could call your aunt Maggie to check in on her every once in a while."
"You know, D, maybe leaving wasn't such a great idea after all. Mom might need me."
"Sammy, your mother can take care of herself. And if you want to live with me, I think that you shouldn't let your mother stop you from doing so. It's about time you got properly taken cared of."
I didn't know how to respond to that. For years, I had to take care of myself and my mother. Sure, I have—I mean, had…I had Carly. She took care of me more than Mom ever did. But a best friend who's a few months younger than you couldn't be your mother figure. Plus, I couldn't count on her to watch out for me anymore.
"Sammy, you still there?" I hadn't realized I spaced out for so long.
"Thought I lost you there for a second. But anyways, moving to San Francisco is a huge deal, Sammy, so I want you to make sure it's the right choice for you. I know the Shay's have provided a haven of sorts from your home life, and Carly is a major part of why you can tolerate staying in Seattle with your mother. To be honest, if you believe that your friendship with her has ended, I don't think I'm comfortable with leaving you there. And don't try to defend your mother, princess. I will never forgive her for not being a good mother to you."
"She did her best," I stated pathetically. Dad sighed.
"I know she did," he conceded. "But it wasn't enough. I could have given you more. A lot more. If you and your sister hadn't stopped me, I would have called the Child Protective Services on her long ago. And she's lucky you chose her, or I would have fought harder to get custody of you." I suddenly felt like I'd done something wrong.
"I'm sorry," I automatically said.
"What?" he asked confusedly. "Why are you—oh! Shit. Sammy, I'm sorry. I didn't…." He took a breath to compose himself. "I'm sorry, Sammy. I didn't mean to sound like that. I'm not mad at you, okay. Please believe me, princess, I'm not angry at you. I'm mad at your mother. I hate that she didn't take care of you more."
"I know," I said in a soft voice. "But it was my choice. I chose to stay with her."
"Still, you didn't deserve being neglected all these years," he countered. "You know that I'm not mad at you, right?" he asked again.
"Yes, D, I got that," I said reassuringly.
"And choosing your mother and wanting to take care of her is nothing to apologize for. It was honorable. And I'm proud of you for it. You have a lot of character, more than the whole Puckett Clan combined."
"That's not really saying much, Dad," I stated, making him laugh loudly.
"True. With parents like me and your mother, I don't know how you and Melly turned out so good." I raised an eyebrow at that.
"Uh, Dad, Mel is the good one. Have you not been receiving my report cards with the teachers' comments?"
"Those don't count. You could have been a model student if you wanted to." I felt a shift in Dad's mood. "Again, it's your mother's fault. If she'd only pulled herself together sooner, you wouldn't have needed to take care of her and neglected your studies. Also, your teachers are stupid and incompetent. They should have never judged you based on that off year and continue to label you as a hopeless delinquent. They've already made up their minds about you and wouldn't change their opinions even when you did start applying yourself. So how could I blame you for acting out? Remind me again why I didn't send you to St. Stephen's Academy?"
"Because I didn't want to go to private school and leave Carly behind." It suddenly got awkward.
"So our conversation has come full circle and we're back to the point…."
"Yup-puh," I said, popping the 'p.'
"So you want to leave Seattle and come live with me and Melly?"
"Yes," I said with certainty.
"And you're sure that's what you want to do?"
This time, I wasn't as certain as I replied, "Yes," making Dad sigh.
"Look, Sammy. I'm trying very hard to be a mature, responsible adult here. A huge part of me wants me to tell you to pack up and I'll be over there by nightfall." Both he and I gave a short laugh even though we both knew he was being absolutely serious. He continued speaking once we both sobered. "I'm not going to lie to you. I want you here. When you said that you wanted to live with me, I was really really happy." That made me feel guilty. I knew how much it hurt him and Mel when I decided to stay with Mom in Seattle and not move to San Francisco with them.
"I know, Dad," I said softly, trying not to show my guilt. But Dad must have heard it anyway.
"Hey, now. I'm not trying to make you feel guilty. I'm just stating the truth." He cleared his throat. "Sammy, there's obviously something still holding you back. As much as I want you here with me and your sister, I don't want you to regret moving here. So please think about this carefully. Whatever that something is that's holding you back, is it enough reason for you to stay?" I wasn't even surprised when Dad figured out that there was a something. He's probably the only person who knew me better than Carly or Mel ever did.
"I don't know," I admitted.
"Well, then. I better let you go. Looks like you have a lot of thinking to do. But whatever decision you make, please make it because it's what you want, and not because it's what I want or what Mel wants. Find out for sure if there are still reasons for you to stay. And if you find that there aren't, I'll be on the next flight to Seattle to pick you up. And I doubt I'll be able to stop your sister from coming along." I groaned. "What?"
"She's gonna want to do some bonding," I said, almost sounding like I was whining.
"What's wrong with bonding with your sister?" Dad asked in concern.
"She tries too hard, Dad. And she gets really corny at times. Like, soap opera-ish corny. It makes me cringe."
"Yeah, Melly can get a bit dramatic," he conceded with a laugh. "But she's especially like that with you because, well, she misses you. And she loves you. You have no idea how devastated she was when she first found out about Carly being your best friend. For a long time, she hated her."
"She did?" I asked in surprise. "But she's always been so nice to Carly whenever she visited."
"Well, Melly stopped hating her because she got to know her. Like me, she hated how your mother's neglect has affected you. When she saw that Carly made you happy and gave you a place to stay when you didn't want to go home, she changed her view of Carly. You didn't hear this from me, but your sister still feels some resentment towards Carly because she feels like she stole you away. But for your sake, Melly accepted her. And in time, she came to like her since they had a lot in common."
"I didn't know that."
"She was afraid that if you found out she didn't like your best friend, then she'd lose you completely."
"Is it? Carly is…was your best friend. And both Melly and I know that Carly was another reason you stayed in Seattle. Because of that, Melly felt that if it came down to a choice between her or Carly, you'd choose Carly."
I was silent in contemplation for several seconds.
"I didn't know she felt that way. Mel's my sister. Even if we did drift apart, I still love her."
"You should tell her. She'd love to hear that." I rolled my eyes.
"That I know. She loves that corny chizz." Then I sighed. "Look, D. Could you explain to Mel that I don't do the mushy crap that she does? Could you tell her to tone down the corniness by a lot? If she could do that, then I'll try a lot harder to do the sisterly bonding that she so wants."
"Why don't you just tell her yourself?"
"Because then I'd be in a situation that's much too dramatic for me, and I'm trying to avoid that."
"Point taken. I'll speak to her about it after you tell me whether or not you're moving here for sure." I felt our conversation about to end, so I started the goodbyes.
"Thanks for the talk, Dad," I said sincerely.
"You're welcome, princess. Now look who's being all dramatic?" he teased. I rolled my eyes at him even if he doesn't see me.
"Well, I guess there are moments and peoples that I'd make an exemption for."
"I love you."
"I love you too, Dad."
A/N: Sorry for the long absence. My life's been hectic since I got this new job. It still is hectic. But I figured, if I get something out there, I'll start writing again, and hopefully write more regularly. I'll just take the plunge, so to speak, and see what happens. I make no promises, though.
Anyways, I've decided to try my hand at a multi-chapter fic, and came up with this Sam-centric story about her relationship with her family and her friends set in an alternate plot line that breaks off from when Sam and Carly ended iCarly. This probably won't be like my usual stories in terms of genre. And I'm not sure if I want Sam to have any romantic relations in this story as of yet. But if there will be, of course it'll be Seddie.
Btw, I don't know if this concept has been done before. I haven't come across a story with this concept, so let me know if it has been done and I'll be sure to give credit where it's due. Thanks.
And thank you for reading. It'll be awesome if you could leave a review.