Title: "Just a Single Moment of Clarity"

Author: carpesomediem

E-Mail: carpesomediem[at]gmail.com

Fandom: Popular

Characters: Brooke/Sam

Rating: G


Warnings/Spoilers: Not mine.  Ryan Murphy, Touchstone, definitely not mine.  Spoilers for "Tonight's the Night."

Summary: Brooke watches Sam, and in a single moment, everything becomes clear.

There's moments of clarity everybody has in life.  They can be as simple as a thunderstorm on a hot summer day or they can be as monumental as a car accident that forever changes the landscape of a family.  No matter how insignificant the moment, it reshapes a person forever into something new, different, whether the world is ready for them that way or not.  These moments escape us, often, and we grasp at straws trying to recall just how they change us for the good or bad.

Because change can go both ways.

Change can be a catalyst for a new relationship.  Those single moments with somebody special turning into months and even years of bliss.  But while it's difficult for even one person to realize things are changing, how much more difficult must it be for two who must see the change in tandem to get the outcome just right?  Because more often than not when two people are meant to be together, they miss how fate somehow brings them together, and instead of going with the flow, they fight against it.

Brooke McQueen and Sam McPherson: Textbook case of fighting against fate with everything they had without even realizing it.  Fate's textbook has a whole chapter dedicated to the cheerleader and journalist, in fact, and case studies have shown it's one of the most popular subjects amongst students at fate academy.  While fate tends to have a lot of patient, between those two, it was willing to make an exception.  Neither seemed to realize how close they were to losing one another, because neither one was willing to step down from the preconceived notion that they could be nothing more than maybe friends on some level.

Brooke was pretty sure the change she was going through as Sam leaned against the refrigerator, drinking her way oblivious to the world around her, was a good thing.  'Pretty sure,' she thought, staring at the brunette as if she was the only one in the world worthy of her attention.  Sam was hardly a page turner, or so the social hierarchy at Kennedy High pegged her, but that didn't stop the blonde from admiring every inch of the brunette from head-to-toe.

And if Sam hadn't been so naive about Brooke's gaze, she may have realized, that she in fact, was being checked out by the most popular girl at school.  But, of course, she didn't, and Brooke expected more from her like she always did, and was let down.  So, what did the blonde resort to?  Teasing.  Because even if she couldn't just outright tell Sam how hot it was simply watching her drink bottled water, she could certainly make her feel bad for doing so in her presence.  The blonde knew it was immature, she knew it was outright mean, but when she felt uncomfortable, she did the only thing she knew to combat it, she pushed the person or situation making her feel inferior out of the way the best way she knew how.

When when pushes Sam, the brunette pushes back even harder.  And that's just what Sam did, because once attacked, she couldn't leave it alone no matter how hard it was for her to see that it didn't matter.  Brooke would continue to push, and she knew that, because instead of confronting her feelings for the other girl, she'd bury them, because there was no way she felt the same.  It was just a phase, something that puberty and Josh getting on her last nerve must be trying her to experiment with, or was it more than that?

No, Brooke McQueen was certain.

It was more than that.  Despite being concerned cold by most, she knew what she felt for the brunette was more than just some sort of phase.  It was becoming more and more a part of her every day life, and she was beginning to accept that at the very least, she enjoyed the company of both sexes instead of just the male species.  Of course, there was still Josh to deal with, but for now until she figured it all out he could stay in the dark, and things would be okay.

It was the moment Sam realized that the looks Brooke gave her, the moments they shared, and the subtle flirting between them might be more than meets the eye that worried the blonde.  The moment they both were in it together, that's when things could go horribly askew and threaten to destroy both their worlds.  If only Brooke knew they were already on the same page, flipping through the same book, but the two never read the same book.

Or so they both convinced themselves, and they'd continue living a lie, because in high school, it's easier to live the lie than accept the truth for what it is.  When it came down to it, Brooke and Sam only had eyes for one another, and they both did whatever they could to convince the world at large, and more importantly themselves, that nothing would ever come of it.  And boy did they convince themselves that nothing would ever come of living together or their parents getting hitched or anything else that might have crossed their minds since the beginning of the school year.

So, here they stood at a crossroads without even knowing it, they could continue on dancing around one another like kids on a playground, or they could accept that they both were having a moment of clarity even if it wasn't staring them straight in the face.  But since both were as a stubborn as rocks, the chances of them realizing they were head over heels for one another was slim to none, and while fate was on their side, it doesn't wait around forever in matters of the heart.


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