TITLE: Trains Going By

AUTHOR: Jos Mous

Email: wotan_anubis@yahoo.com

DISCLAIMER: I don't own anything, I'm not making a profit.

PAIRING: Sam/Brooke. . . kind of

RATING: Let's say PG-13

NOTE: This is just a short little thing that I'm not entirely sure I should've written and I'm not quite sure why I've written it in the first place. Still, it's been written.

It was breakfast time at the Palace and everybody was cranky. Sam was cranky because she hadn't been able to get a good night's sleep, Brooke was cranky because of. . . some reason Sam quite suspected but didn't dare think just yet and Jane was cranky because Sam and Brooke were cranky. In fact, the only one who wasn't cranky was Mac, who didn't let her complete lack of an efficient hand-eye and plate-mouth co-ordination get in the way of thoroughly enjoying breakfast.

Sam finished eating quickly and before anyone could say anything, she rushed up the stairs into Brooke's room. She wasn't quite sure what she was looking for and didn't even know if it could be found in the first place, but she was going to try anyway.

Sam first looked into the hidden compartment in Brooke's closet. She didn't find anything there, but then again, she hadn't really expected to since it was the obvious place to look after all.

After that, she checked under the bed, the desk drawers, even Brooke's plush teddy bear. She didn't find anything anywhere, which told Sam all she needed to know.


After school had ended, Sam politely declined Brooke's offer to drive her home and headed for the shopping centre. There, somewhat on the edge of the centre, Sam found a store she would never acknowledge knowing the existence of. Or at least, not in front of her mother. She felt comforted by the fact that the store didn't overuse a certain letter of the alphabet, but she was quite shaken when the girl behind the counter turned out to be very pleasant, friendly and helpful.


Sam walked into the bathroom, feeling slightly apprehensive. Brooke was already there, brushing her teeth and dressed in pyjamas.

"Hey Brooke," said Sam.

Brooke looked up. "Hrm," she said, before spitting into the sink. "What's that you've got behind your back?"

"Oh this?" said Sam, not showing what she was holding behind her back.

"This is just. . . something that I'd like to give you in the spirit of friendship and a good night's sleep. Especially in the spirit of a good night's sleep. I really want you to remember that when I give it to you, OK?"

"Uhm. . . sure," said Brooke.

"OK then."

Sam showed Brooke what she'd been holding behind her back.

"Oh," said Brooke. "How'd you know that my. . . uhm. . . that mine was broken?"

"Well, you know the thing about trains that pass your house every five minutes or so? How that noise is really annoying at first, but after all you only really notice it when it's not there any more? This is kinda like that." said Sam.

"Are you saying. . .?"

"Yeah. Sorry."

"So you need me to. . . before you can fall asleep."


"Oh." Brooke took it. "Thanks. I guess."

"Don't mention it," said Sam. "Really. Don't."


Sam couldn't sleep. She stared up at the ceiling, feeling tense. Yes, Brooke now did have a new, working she-knew-what, but that didn't mean it was actually going to be. . . deployed, so to speak. There was a very real chance Brooke just didn't feel like it and that'd mean more insomnia for Sam. And maybe for Brooke too.

Then there was a low, mechanical hum that was slightly different than it used to be, but still familiar. It got smothered quite quickly. And then there was moaning.

Sam smiled, relaxed and closed her eyes. With those familiar, almost comforting sounds filling her head again, she soon fell asleep. And in doing so, never noticed that, this time, those comforting sounds were both louder and longer.


It was a lazy Saturday afternoon and Sam was spending it lounging in the living room. She looked up from the book she was reading when Brooke bounded into the room.

"You're looking perky," said Sam.

"I just really want to thank you," said Brooke.

An eyebrow raised on Sam's forehead. "Really? What for?"

Brooke rolled her eyes. "You know."

"Do I?" said Sam. "Well, thanks anyway."

"Oh and by the way, it's Mary Cherry's birthday today, so I'm going over there for a sleepover tonight."

"Oh," said Sam.

"But not to worry, I've got a digital camera plus laptop upstairs so I'll make sure you'll get to sleep tonight."

Sam closed her book very deliberately. "Are you saying. . .?"

"Hmm?" Brooke's face was an unreadable mask of innocent cheerfulness.

"Do you really. . .?"

"Look, Sam, I really want to help you," Brooke said pointedly. "Of course, if you don't want it you just have to say."

Sam stood up and put an arm around Brooke. "I always felt turning down help never really achieves anything," she said. "So let's get going."

And Sam knew that Mary Cherry's birthday wouldn't be for another two months. She also quite suspected that Brooke knew that she knew. However, Sam wasn't bothered by this in the least.

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