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Bittersweet After-Effect

Beep! Beep!

Sam and Freddie separated from their kiss and Freddie took out his Pearphone from his pocket.

Sam sighed. "Midnight,"

Freddie nodded solemnly. "I guess that means we're broken up."


They reluctantly pulled away from each other and walked towards the door, heading back inside. They had been on the roof for the final hour and a half of their relationship and they knew it was time to separate.

Sam and Freddie stood awkwardly next to each other, sneaking glances here and there as they waited for the elevator. Freddie turned to her and quickly, without even pausing to think about it, grabbed Sam's hand. Sam jumped slightly at the contact and looked over at Freddie. He had turned back to the elevator and wasn't looking at her but he squeezed her hand comfortingly. Sam took a deep breath and then turned back to the elevator, squeezing Freddie's hand back.

The elevator arrived and they walked in, still grasping each other's hand tightly, fearing what would happen once they finally let go.

When they finally reached the hallway between the Carly and Freddie's apartments, they stood completely still for a moment, not wanting this moment to end but knowing it had to. Sam reluctantly began to pull away and head towards Carly's when Freddie pulled her back.

He put his hand on her cheek gently and placed his forehead lightly against hers. He kissed her slowly, yearningly, and then quickly pulled away.

Looking her directly in the eyes, he said, "I love you."

Sam stared back at him just as intently and sighed. "I love you too."

They kept their eyes connected for a moment more than grudgingly pulled away and Freddie went over to his apartment and Sam went to Carly's.

Sam stepped into her best friend's apartment and leaned against the door, closing her eyes and letting out a shaky breath.

"Sam? Where were you?" Carly asked, looking up from the magazine she had been reading.

"I was with Freddie." Sam said

Carly grinned, giggling slightly. "Have fun?"

"We broke up." She stated simply, walking over to the couch and sitting beside her best friend.

"What?" Carly shrieked. "Are you okay? Is Freddie? Do you want me to bring him over? Don't worry Sam! We'll work this out!" Carly exclaimed, quickly standing up and heading for the door.

"No, don't." Sam said. "It was mutual." Carly looked over at Sam, confused.

"Mutual? You mean you both wanted to break up?"

Sam nodded slowly. "We just weren't right for each other. Not now anyway." Sam looked down at her hands which had balled into two fists trembling on her lap.

Carly stared silently, not knowing what to say.

"It was mutual." Sam repeated, this time her lip quivering as she spoke.

Carly sighed sadly. "Then why are you crying?" She asked

"Because I wish it hadn't been."

All the strength Sam had built up suddenly came crumbling down. She planted her face in her hands and her shoulders began to shake violently. Only a tear or two came down; this was still Sam and she wasn't one for crying, it was a personal rule. For Sam, this was a full-out breakdown.

Carly quickly ran back over and hugged Sam tightly. Sam rested her head on Carly's shoulder and continued to shake.

Carly rubbed her arm, whispering encouraging words to her.

"Shhh, Sam, it'll be okay."

"I wish it had worked." Sam whispered. "So so badly."

"I know." Carly whispered, "We all did." She wasn't sure just how much she meant that but she was upset, she didn't like seeing her best friend in pain.

"He told me he loved me." Sam said

Carly's eyes widened. "And what did you say?"

"I said I loved him too."

"Wait, was this before or after you broke up?"

"We decided to break up then he told me."

"Then why aren't you still together? I don't understand!" Carly exclaimed, confusedly.

"Our feelings don't matter. We didn't work. That was the bottom line. We were being bad friends. You hated us together."

"I didn't...hate you two together." Sam gave Carly an 'are you serious?' look.

"Of course of you did. You had everything right to. We were being awful to you."

Carly sighed. "I may not have liked that half the time all your problems were made my problems and the other half of the time you excluded me from everything. But in the end, I just wanted you to be happy. Both of you. You're my best friends. I love you guys."

Sam smiled sadly, a lone tear rolling down her cheek. "This is for the best." Honestly believing that but wishing she hadn't.

Carly pulled Sam back into her arms, not saying anything and comforting her friend as she went back to quaking violently.

After about an hour and a half of Carly comforting her miserable best friend, Sam, feeling drained, finally fell asleep. Carly lay her down on the couch and placed a warm fleece blanket over her. She looked down at her best friend sorrowfully, there was a tear stain on her face and even though she was asleep, she looked anything but peaceful.

Carly sighed and turned around, heading purposefully towards to the door and stalking across the hall. She knocked on the door to the Benson's, as softly as she could just in case Ms. Benson was asleep. In several seconds, the door opened and she came face to face with Freddie. A tired, sad, broken Freddie that looked as if he must have been crying as well.

"You've been crying too, huh?" Carly asked, taking in the dishevelled expression of her other best friend. He wasn't in any better of a state then Sam.

"Sam told you." It wasn't a question but Carly nodded in reply.

Freddie sniffed and turned away. "You here to yell at me?

Carly raised her eyebrows. "Why would I yell at you?"

Freddie shrugged. "I don't know. I just figured you'd take Sam's side in this."

"She said it was mutual." Carly said, almost flinching at the sentence she had heard Sam achingly repeat so many times to her.

"It was." Freddie nodded, looking just as heartbroken as Sam had.

"I just wanted to see how you were." Carly said

"I told her I loved her."

Carly nodded, smiling solemnly. "She told me." Carly sighed. "But you still broke up."

"It was mutual."

Carly almost rolled her eyes. This seemed to be the only thing Freddie and Sam could say to keep themselves sane and continue to believe that they had made the right decision. But honestly, the word 'mutual' was going to be forever tainted after all this.

"You know what I don't get." Freddie stated. "How after we decided to break up, we became a better couple." Carly furrowed her eyebrows.

"What do you mean?"

"Sam and I decided to break up at 10:30 then we decided why not just wait until midnight. The last hour and a half of our relationship was...good. Really good. Like we were Sam and Freddie again and not the weird relationship ones we'd tried to force ourselves to be."

Carly stared at Freddie intently before reaching over and pulling him into a hug.

"Things will work out. I promise." Carly whispered

"How do you know?" Freddie whispered quietly, worried if he spoke any louder, Carly would be able to hear the hoarseness of his voice.

"Because you both just spent the past hour and a half crying." Freddie's shoulder shook a bit and Carly continued. "And neither of you have ever cried over a relationship before."

She rubbed his back comfortingly. "Because she went with you to the model train club meeting, no matter how lame it was. Because you smuggled ham into jail in your pants because she asked you to." Carly sighed. "Because even though you two love each other, you set each other free." Carly pulled away and looked Freddie straight in the eyes and held his shoulders. "When you guys are ready to be together, it will work. Because no matter how long it takes, you're meant to be together. No matter what anyone thinks about it. It'll just take a little time to sort things out."

Freddie looked physically exhausted as he ran his hand through his messy hair and nodded.

"See you tomorrow." Carly said, giving him one last hug before heading back towards her apartment.

"Hey Carls," Freddie said. Carly turned back around to her upset friend.

He tried to smile at her but it just ended up a grimace. "Thanks," He rubbed his puffy, bloodshot eyes.

Carly nodded, "Go to sleep Freddie." He nodded and closed the door.

Carly stood in the corridor between the two doors and let out a weary breath. She felt her legs finally give out and she fell to the ground, almost beginning to cry herself. She felt drained, physically and emotionally but she knew she didn't feel even half as miserable as Sam and Freddie did. No, she may not have loved them together but she didn't like them apart either. It hurt her to see them so lost and confused and distressed without each other. But she believed what she had said to them. The breakup would be hard to deal with but one day, maybe weeks, maybe years, maybe even decades later, they would look back on this day and smile. Because everything would be alright.

So she picked herself up, wiped away the tears and walked back into her apartment. Her two best friends, her family, had finally said those three little words and broken up in the span of one long, draining night. Tomorrow she would deal with the bittersweet after-effect, the regret, their very first confrontation and everything else. Because she was their best friend and they needed her. But for now, she needed to sleep. She dragged herself up the stairs and to her bed, falling into a deep, dream-filled sleep of a much happier time she knew would come. This was just the bittersweet after-effect. Things would get better. They always did.

I really believe Seddie isn't over! For now, sure, but not forever! I think they'll get together in the series finale or something. I mean, they can't just say they love each other and then never bring up their relationship again! Can they? God, I hope not. Anyway, loved it? Hated it? Let me know! And let me know what you thought of the episode and just the whole arc in general.

-Lulu halulu