Title: always an option
Pairing: Sam/Finn
Rating: PG
Word Count: 2876
Summary: There's a rumor going around that Sam is transferring to another school. Finn has to do something about it before it's too late.
Notes: Wednesday was National Kissing Day, apparently. So I wrote this.

When Finn first hears the rumor, he dismisses it. There's no way Sam is planning to transfer. They'd just hung out a couple days ago, and Sam definitely would've mentioned it.

He goes back to bagging groceries and praying no one will make him go outside in the summer heat to wrangle carts. He forgets about the rumor for a while, until he hears it yet again, this time from a girl he recognizes from his math class last year.

He figures maybe he'd misheard, or they were talking about some other Sam, but then one of his football teammates shows up. As Finn is bagging up his sodas, the guy speaks up.

"You hear about Evans?"

"I-- No, not really." He glances over at Chelsea, the cashier. She's 21 and usually doesn't give a damn what Finn does while on shift, as long as he keeps up with the bagging, but there are occasional days when she'll suddenly tell him off for slacking.

"Apparently he's transferring. A damn shame," the guy says, taking his bags. "He was pretty good; I was looking forward to another winning season." He shrugs and waves as he walks off, and Finn is so confused, he forgets to wave back.

Finn sees a lot of people he knows through the course of his shift. He's pretty sure they get in his line on purpose, either to give him a hard time or just to say hey. He uses this to his advantage today, trying to find out more information on this Sam story and why everyone apparently knows but him.

Over the next few hours, he hears just about every reason he could think of for Sam leaving, but no one's heard it from Sam himself. By the time Santana shows up, Finn's fairly convinced of the rumor, and it's ruining his day.

She shares a lingering smile with Chelsea as the latter rings up her candy bar, then directs her attention to Finn. "Okay, spill. What crawled up your ass today?"

Finn opens his mouth to fire back an admittedly lame comeback, but he's not really in the mood for it. He sighs. "Have you heard about Sam?"

"Yeah, Brit told me," Santana says. "He's transferring out for better college prep courses. Wouldn't be surprised if he showed up at Gay Hogwarts next term."

"Alison told me he was going back to Tennessee," Finn says, feeling his insides churn.

Santana shrugs. "Maybe. That's all I know."

She waves over her shoulder as she heads for the door, pulling her phone from her pocket as she goes.

Now that he's heard it from someone in Glee, it seems like it's official. But why would Sam not tell him? And when would he be leaving? And why does the thought of senior year without Sam seem so miserable?

When there's a lull in the crowd, Chelsea goes for a smoke break and leaves Finn in charge of the register. Finn had been hoping recently to be promoted to cashier, and he kept urging Sam to come work with him, thinking about they could hang out on breaks and make fun of Finn's manager. Now he figures that's probably a waste of time, if Sam's leaving in a month or two.

It's while he's turning this awful thought over in his head that Blaine shows up, placing a bag of chips and soda on the belt and greeting him cheerfully.

Finn mumbles a hello and hopes he doesn't have to make small talk for too long. He likes Blaine, but he's tired of the bad news everyone's had for him today.

"You seem distracted," Blaine says as he takes his bag from Finn. "Everything okay?"

Finn takes in his concerned look and decides not to lie. "How do you convince someone that you really care about not to do something?"

Blaine pops open his chip bag upside-down, face scrunched up like he's thinking it over. "Well, last week, I made out with Kurt until he agreed to watch the movie I wanted to watch." He smiles as if he's proud of himself, pulling a chip out of the bag and inspecting it. "That usually happens the other way around."

Finn laughs as Blaine seems to approve of the chip and pops it in his mouth. "And what if making out isn't an option?"

"Making out is always an option," Blaine says, holding his hand over his mouth. He takes the time to swallow before he speaks again. "What's this about?"

He waves it off as Chelsea comes back from her break and immediately starts ringing up the next customer's groceries. "Nothing. I mean, it's something, but probably nothing I have any control over. I should probably just let it go." He ignores the way his chest feels tight at the thought, and pulls the fruit out of the bag when he realizes he's put it in too early.

Blaine stands silently beside him, watching him bag groceries and not saying anything. Finn hears him crunching on his chips and wonders what he has to say to get rid of him. He doesn't really want to think about this anymore, or at least not right now. Finally, as Finn finishes loading up the lady's cart, Blaine says, "You should tell her how you feel." Finn is confused for a second until he realizes Blaine thinks he's been talking about a girl he likes. "Even if you don't think it'll make a difference, it's better to get it all out in the open. Otherwise you might regret it forever."

He takes in Blaine's serious expression. The thing is, Blaine has no idea what they're even talking about, but he's still kind of right. Finn takes a deep breath and says, "Yeah, you're right."

Blaine smiles and pats him on the back, moving off toward the door. It's Wednesday, so Finn knows where he's headed.

"Hey Blaine?" Finn says before he can get too far. Blaine turns his head and shoots him a questioning look. "Can you tell my mom and Burt I won't be home for dinner?"

"You got it," Blaine says, saluting him with the chip bag. Finn snorts a laugh and waves goodbye to him.

He waits until he can be sure his manager isn't lurking to dig his cell phone out of his pocket and type out a message to Sam.

F: pick u up after ur shift?

The response is almost immediate, even though Finn knows Sam isn't allowed to have his phone on during his shift either.

S: Sounds graet. :) Off at 5.

Finn bites his lip and tries to channel his nervous energy into bagging groceries extra fast.


Despite his best efforts to stall, Finn still gets to Pizza Plaza a good twenty minutes before Sam's shift is over. He sits on the hood of his car and nervously texts anyone he can find an excuse to text while he waits.

Blaine's words keep running through his mind even as he tries to distract himself, and not just the 'talk it out' part. The thing is... and he's had a long time to come to terms with this, but the thing is that Finn actually wants to kiss Sam, and he has for a while, and now (thanks to Blaine) he can't stop thinking about it. It sucks, because now Sam's leaving, and Finn never got a chance to say anything.

He manages to distract himself by texting Rachel, and he's in the middle of an argument with her about the merits of classic rock when Sam suddenly says, "Hey, Finn."

Finn looks up, surprised, to see Sam squinting into the sunlight in front of him. He swallows nervously and pockets his phone. "Sam."

Sam sighs, seeming to deflate as he does, and props himself up against the car. "I dunno man, I don't think I can do this any more."

Finn scrambles off the hood so he can stand next to Sam. He might still have a chance to convince him. "You can, though," Finn insists. "I think you should stay."

Sam squints at him, shaking his hair out of his eyes. "Really? I thought you'd be kinda happy about this."

"What?" Finn says, incredulous. "No way, man, that's the last thing I want."

Sam looks both confused and unhappy hearing that, and Finn feels frustration building up inside him. Blaine was right the first time; they aren't gonna get anywhere just talking. Finn inhales sharply and then pulls Sam in, kissing him intently.

Sam makes a surprised noise and reaches for Finn, his fingers twisting into Finn's sleeve as he starts to kiss back. A thrill shoots through Finn at his response, but he tries to hold his focus. He pulls back and drops his hand, looking into Sam's confused eyes and trying his hardest to ignore how inviting his mouth looks. "You can't leave, man. If it's your parents moving back to Tennessee, then you can stay in our basement, or if it's for better college prep, I'll help you save up for like, an SAT book--"

"Wait," Sam says, cutting him off. He licks his lips and then gives a short laugh. "What's going on here? What are you talking about?"

Finn kind of misses the question, because Sam's lips have caught his attention again. He'd definitely been kissing back there for a second, surely he won't mind if Finn does it again?

Sam's lips twist into a smile, and then his fingers grip at Finn's sleeve again. "Hey," Sam says, shaking Finn out of it for the moment. "Not that I'm not kind of loving this, but I need to know if I've gone crazy or I dunno, maybe you have, before I can fully appreciate it."

Now Finn's really confused. "I'm not crazy, I just don't want you to leave."

"My job?"


"McKinley?" Sam repeats, his hand dropping from Finn's arm as his eyebrows shoot up. Finn misses the contact already. "Dude, I'm not leaving school. Who told you that?"

"Like... 15 people at the store?" He feels a rush of relief that Sam's not going anywhere, followed up quickly by more confusion. "So wait, if you're not leaving, then what were you talking about?"

"Oh," Sam says, pulling an unhappy face. He points his thumb back over his shoulder. "The Pizza Plaza. I think I'm done, man. I can't take another day of grease and bad tips and that one creepy guy that keeps hitting on me. That is, if you still think you can get me a spot bagging groceries?"

Finn's face lights up. "Yeah! Definitely, dude. You can be our new cart lackey!"

Sam's smile falters. "Hold up. Cart lackey?"

Finn shakes his head. "It's not so bad. Just a few times a day. The new guy has to do it most often, that's all. We could take turns?" Finn offers, even though he hates being the cart lackey. Maybe they could work it out so they could do it together...

Sam shakes his head. "I'm still... Why did everyone think I was leaving?" he asks, his frustration evident as he runs his hand through his hair.

Finn shrugs. He's glad they're not having to talk about the kissing thing, but he'd kinda like to try it again in the meantime. "I heard a buncha reasons, but Santana said it was because you needed college credit."

"Oh," Sam says, nodding as he seems to remember. "Okay, yep, that one was my fault. Brittany showed up last night to pick up an order. We talked for a few minutes, and I told her that I was gonna take a course over at the community college in the fall. She must have misunderstood."

It takes Finn a second, but eventually it all starts to piece together. "That explains a lot," he says, thinking back. "There was even one girl who thought you'd been accepted to college, which I didn't think made sense because--"

"I'm sorry," Sam interrupts with a laugh. "Can we go back to the part where you kissed me? I kind of really want to do that again."

"Oh," Finn says, feeling his train of thought derail entirely. "I mean, yeah, that sounds--you can--"

But Sam doesn't wait for any more than that, already shifting toward him. Finn wonders for a second if their spot behind the Pizza Plaza building is secluded enough to keep them from being seen, but then decides he doesn't care as their lips meet. Sam wraps his hand around the back of Finn's neck to pull him closer and deepen the kiss, and Finn goes easily, his hands reaching out to rest on Sam's hips.

God, he's been thinking about this forever, but he had never imagined the heat from the sun on his back or Sam's fingers on his neck or the way Sam's tongue darts out against his lips, teasing for a second before slipping inside his mouth. Finn kisses back like his life depends on it, feeling a thrill when he does something with his tongue that makes Sam's breath catch.

"Wow," Sam says when he pulls back.

"Yeah," Finn says, feeling slightly short of breath.

Sam licks his lips and drops his hand from Finn's neck. "That's been a long time coming."

"Yeah?" Finn asks. It definitely has been for him, but it was so hard to tell with Sam. Of course, if Sam had kissed him when he first had the thought, they probably wouldn't have gotten very far before Finn would've freaked out. It was better this way.

"Oh yeah," Sam says enthusiastically, smile stretching across his face. "That was the kinda kiss that could keep a guy from transferring, definitely."

Finn frowns. "But I thought you weren't transferring."

Sam rolls his eyes, but he's laughing, so Finn doesn't take offense. "I wasn't, I'm just saying. C'mon, dude, let's get out of the sun."

Finn reluctantly drops his hands from Sam's waist so that they can get in the car. Once he starts it up and feels the cool blast of the air conditioning, he remembers his original plan. Feeling his face heat up from more than just the sun, he says, "D'you, I mean, I thought maybe we could go grab dinner. At Breadstix?"

When he glances over toward the passenger seat, Sam is beaming back at him. "Yeah, that'd be great. Promise not to make fun of my impressions with the waitress this time?"

Finn feels his face heat up again. Now that he thinks about it, maybe this isn't their first date. "I dunno what you're talking about, man, that was all her."

"Dude, she didn't even know what Portal was," Sam protests, laughing.

Finn smiles as he pulls out onto the highway. "Hey, I'm not the one who tried to tell her there was 'no escape' in that announcer lady voice."

"Yeah, but you were the one who said, 'the cake is a lie.'"

"Oh yeah," Finn says. He'd forgotten that part. He still didn't know what it meant, as he'd only gotten a few levels into Portal before it got too confusing.

"Maybe I can come over later this week," Sam suggests, seeming to read his mind. "We can make some more progress in the game."

Finn immediately starts imagining it, but his thoughts aren't focused on the game so much as him and Sam sitting close together in front of his computer. "That'd be, uh, yeah. Cool."

He drives on in silence, but starts to feel awkward when they get to a stoplight. He's just about to turn on the radio when Sam speaks up. "So your argument to keep me here was really just... kissing me."

Finn tries not to be embarrassed. "You said it would've worked."

"No, definitely," Sam says, and Finn knows he's smiling without even looking. "I'm just wondering how long it would've taken us if I hadn't accidentally started that rumor."

"Oh," Finn says. He's got a point. "Well, I'm glad you did."

"Yeah, me too," Sam says, reaching out to take Finn's hand. Finn keeps his eyes fixed on the road, turning his palm up so Sam can lace their fingers together.

As he pulls into the parking lot at Breadstix, he figures Blaine was right after all. Making out is always an option.


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