15th January 1988 11.55 am

Annabelle Davies grimaced as the doctors wrapped up the creature in a blanket and jiggled it up and down to try and control its' incessant squalling. Richard stood looking uncomfortable by her side. He was trying not to show it, but Annabelle knew he was disappointed the child was a girl and not the male heir he'd hoped for for his buisness.

The irritatingly cheerful nurse brought the child over and tried to lay it by Annabelle's side, how positively dreadful, it was covered in blood and lord knows what else, whatever it was Annabelle wanted it nowhere near her.

'Take it away from me.' She said loudly, waving the doctor off, 'I don't want it near me.'

That wiped the smirk off the nurses' face, 'now come on Mrs Davies, wouldn't you like to see her, she's beautiful.'

Of that Annabelle had no doubt, a former Miss North Carolina herself, she knew her daughter would have inherited her good looks, glancing at her husband she hoped briefly that for the childs' sake it hadn't inherited its' fathers'.

'I don't want to see her, I don't want to hold her, please just take her away.'

The nurse sighed looking sympathetically at the beautiful little bundle in her arms and turned to Richard.

'Mr Davies?' She queried.

Richard looked unusually afraid, he was known for terrifying many a business mogul yet he found it a hundered times more daunting facing his daughter for the first time. He stepped forward awkwardly.

The nurse gently helped him to position the baby into his arms, until he was left staring down at a pink little face with a button nose, rosebud lips and her mothers' big brown eyes.

Yes, she was a beauty alright. Of that he was proud. But the fact remained she wasn't a male. He was never going to get his heir.

Annabelle had fallen pregnant by mistake, one too many cognac's after a board meeting. She hadn't wanted it, was determined to get a termination, but Richard had talked her into it, well bribed was more like it, he promised her nannies, home help, holidays and more expensive clothes if she had the baby.

He was desperately hoping for a son, someone to take over his company 'Davies Oil'. Instead he'd been given a daughter. He still wouldn't have had her aborted, even now with hindsight, no child of his was to be murdered, but he felt little for the scrap of humanity in his arms.

'Has she got a name?' The nurse asked, snapping him from his dark thoughts, as he continued to stare at his daughter.

Annabelle sighed, 'I don't care, pick whatever you want Richard...' she turned her head away from him, 'she's your daughter'.

Richard looked at the baby again and then back to the nurse, 'Well she's going to be named after one of my favourite actresses...Brooke,' he smiled, 'Brooke Shields'.

'Fine...' Annabelle murmered, 'Brooke Shields Davis'.

The nurse gently took the baby from its' father as she began to fuss. Cradling her gently, she walked towards the nursery.

'Welcome to the world Brooke Davies', she cooed softly, 'and good luck...you're going to need it.'

February 9th 1988 8.32 am

'And we have...a little boy' the doctor shouted from where he was examining the newborn baby,

Karen smiled exhausted, she glanced at Keith at her side, shocked to see the tears streaming down his cheeks. 'Oh Kare, he's beautiful'.

She nodded as Keith squeezed her hand. 'I can't believe Dan missed this', she murmered gently, 'he said he'd be here.'

Keith swallowed and looked away hoping Karen wouldn't see the truth in his eyes, his brother wasn't coming, he knew he wasn't. Dan didn't have a caring bone in his body. For a single moment, Keith wanted to grab Karen by the shoulders and shake her until she saw the truth, that his brother was a jerk, he cared for no-one but himself. Why couldn't she see that? But he didn't instead he focussed on the nurse who carried the baby, his nephew towards them.

'Who'd like to hold him first...' she asked, 'Daddy?'

She turned to Keith, and before he could correct her Karen smiled, 'you can hold him Keith.'

Very. very gently afraid he would break, Keith took the baby and laid him in the crook of his arms. He smiled down at the little face looking up at him. The baby was very quiet and he gazed up at Keith unflinchingly, his little mouth puckering, his eyes squinting up at his uncle.

'Hey there, hey there...' Keith spoke, unable to keep the wonder from his voice, 'I'm your uncle Keith, yes I am.' He turned to Karen, sharing a smile with the woman he had worshipped since her first day at Tree Hill High. 'And this lady over here is your mommy, and she is the most brave, strong, beautiful woman in the world, and you are the luckiest baby to have her.'

Karen watched him cooing to the baby, and felt her eyes begin to fill with tears, man, she loved Keith...ahh where did that come from, she immediately wondered, must have been the hormones. Sure she loved Keith in a brotherly kind of way, he had been there for her all the way through her pregnancy, even when Dan had run away at first. But loving Keith in a romantic way...no, no, she had never even thought of it. Oh sure Keith was reliable, sweet, protective and always wonderful to her, but it was his brother that set her heart on fire, that brought her to highs and lows that no-one else came close to, no, she loved Dan. Dan.

Daniel Alexander Scott, she had fallen for him on her first day of High School, she had spotted him climbing out of his Dad's sports car, throwing his bag over his shoulder, and sauntering towards the gym, and she felt her heart stop. He had a presence, a power about him, even at 13. His black hair ruffled in the breeze and his broad shoulders had people moving aside just to give him room. She didn't even notice the older boy who also got out of the car, kissing his mother and holding open the doors for a wheelchair bound girl, struggling to get into Tree Hill High. She didn't notice when the older boy paused and stood stock still staring at her as she gazed out across the yard.

She didn't see any of it.

She only saw Dan, and Karen Roe decided she would get Dan Scott, if it was the only thing she ever did. Immediately she followed cautiously behind him as he walked into the gym.

He had disappeared once she made it inside but she decided she'd hang around and pretend to look at the trophies inside. One name consistently stood out, 'Royal Scott'. She wondered briefly if the boy she was following would be as good at basketball as this Royal evidently was. Hovering outside in the corridor, she was surprised to hear raised voices.

'You'll get your trial at the same time as everyone else boy'. A gruff voice boomed down the corridor.

'The name isn't boy, it's Dan Scott' another voice replied.

Karen held her breath, Dan Scott, so that was his name. Did that mean that Royal Scott, was a relation?

'Look son, I don't care if your name's Dan Scott or John Lennon, you'll get your shot with everyone else, not before,you hear me.'

'I want you to check me out now, I promise you, you won't be sorry. I have the ambition and the will to beat my father's records, and I promise you I'll make the best shooting guard this school's ever seen Coach Durham.'

'I'm sure you may son, and I admire your enthusiasm, but I've been coaching here ten years and I pride myself on coaching fair...now I'll see you at try-outs on Friday, not before, got it.'

The coach recieved no reply, instead the door swung open and Dan Scott, barrelled furiously down the hallway, knocking down a surprised Karen on the way.

She fell to the floor.

'Watch where you're going' Dan sneered angrily and kept on walking.

Karen, anxiously scrambled for her books, humiliated to have made her first impression like that. She hurried to grasp her history textbook, but someone else picked it up for her.

She looked up, 'thankyou.'

Keith handed her the book and helped her to her feet, 'I'm sorry about Dan. He's a jerk sometimes.'

Karen nodded her head, unsure who this boy was and desperate to go and apologise to Dan for bumping into him. 'It's ok, it was my fault', she muttered, and without gazing back she brushed passed him after where Dan had disappeared to.

Keith stood staring after her, 'you're welcome', he whispered to the empty corridor.

Soon after her first disasterous meeting with Dan, Karen decided the best way to get to Dan was by joining the sports scene, she became a cheerleader. And then to her happiness she finally had a real conversation with Dan about his wonderful basketball abilities, and then finally in senior year, they'd begun dating.

Dan Scott and Karen Roe, together forever.

Then she'd fallen pregnant.

Dan had run away at first, told her he wanted nothing to do with it, he had a basketball scholarship, he wasn't going to give it up for her. Karen had been heart-broken, but then he'd changed his mind. Told her he'd finish the semester at college and then they could be a family. He'd promised to be there at their sons' birth.

But he wasn't here.

Karen was jolted from her thoughts as the baby was placed by her side. She was shocked to find herself staring into Dan's eyes.

'Hello baby', she murmered, feeling an enormous rush of love for the little person lying next to her, 'I'm your mommy and I love you very, very much.'

The nurse smiled and brought over a little tag for the baby's foot.

'What's his name then?'

Karen smiled sadly, upset Dan had missed this, 'Lucas...' she whispered, 'His name's Lucas Scott.'

25th March 1988 6.31 pm

'Oh Katie, she's perfect...she's absolutely perfect.' Larry Sawyer smiled from where he sat, head pressed next to his wifes' as they stared at their baby daughter.

'She is.' His wife replied, 'Lets just be happy she looks nothing like you.'

Larry frowned as his wife laughed and winked at him. He smiled back, eyes meeting hers. 'You were wonderful honey.'

She brought a hand up to touch the side of his face, 'I couldn't have done it without you.'

He moved forward slowly and kissed her on the forhead. 'Was it as painful as they say?'

She pushed some of her unruly blonde curls behind her ear and nodded, eyes flashing with mischief, 'and then some...but I'd do it again, I want a whole brood with you Mr Sawyer.'

Larry laughed, 'It'd be my pleasure Mrs Sawyer.'

The grin slowly dissolved from Katie's face as she looked down at her daughter nestled between them, and a smile of wonder replaced the grin. 'I can't believe we made this.'

'Me neither.'

'She's so unbelievabely beautiful Larry, I never thought I could love another person as much as I love you.'

'Hey.' Larry joked, 'still in the room here.'

Katie smiled, 'you know what I mean.'

'Yeah, i do.' He climbed onto the bed and wrapped an arm around his wife and used a finger to touch the baby's cheek. 'She's going to be a daddy's girl, aren't you my princess?'

'She is not, she's going to be a mommy's girl', his wife protested, 'we're going to go shopping together, and I'm going to teach her to draw, and we can go to beautiful places and paint pictures together.'

'And then when she gets back from her girly time, i'll take her some place really interesting and show her the....'

'dredging boats', they said in unison.

Larry arched an eyebrow, 'how did you know....'

'Honey, you're the only person in the world who gets excited about those damned boats...'

'Katie, they're more than just boats, they are intricate, well designed...'

'Larry!' She interuppted. 'I know they are, I'm just winding you up.' She looked down at their daughter, 'and if you want to take our little Peyton to see them then...'


She smiled then, 'I thought we'd give it a try what do you think?'

Larry looked at the baby thoughtfully, 'hmmm, it's beautiful and mysterious,' the baby opened her blue eyes and gave a little yawn, 'I like it.'

'Peyton Marie Sawyer'. Katie said softly.

Larry kissed the baby on the head, 'after my mother,' he gazed up at the wife he adored, 'she'd love it.'

Katie kissed him deeply, 'and I love you.'

Larry sighed, so happy he thought he'd burst, 'you better.'

2nd May 1988 12.58 pm

'A girl, it's a girl sweetie', Jimmy James shouted excitedly, 'we got our baby girl.'

Lydia James smiled, and laid her head back against the pillow. 'Right Jimmy that's it. I mean it. Five children is enough, from now on you can keep your annoyingly talented hands to yourself.'

Jimmy laughed as he hovered around the nurses as they checked on his baby. 'Fine...fine...you're the one who's missing out baby.'

His wife merely rolled her eyes.

'Would you like to cut the cord?' The nurse asked Jimmy, and he practically snatched the scissors from her hand.

'Right what you do...' the nurse began.

Jimmy cut her off, 'oh it's alright love, I know, I have five kids you know.' He proceeded to gently cut the cord and smile at the baby kicking it's legs and screaming below him.

When the nurse turned back to him, he lowered his voice conspiritorially, and tilted his head at his wife, 'she can't keep her hands off me.'

The nurse laughed and picked up the baby, handing it to Jimmy.

'Hello sweetheart' he cooed gently, 'hello there little Haley Elizabeth..'

'Hey!' Lydia shouted, 'I thought we said we'd discuss that.'

'I like Haley', Jimmy retorted, 'it suits her.'

Grinning proudly he handed his daughter to his wife.

She kissed the baby and lifted her in the air, gazing at her face.

'She doesn't look like Hannah', she said, thinking of her eldest child and only other daughter. Looking at her daughters big, soulful eyes, she offered her husband a smile, 'she has an intelligent look about her, don't you think?'

'Makes a change from the others then.' Jimmy joked, then he peered closer at his daughter, 'yeah actually she does have something clever looking about her.' He tickled the baby under her dainty little chin, 'first James president, do we think Haley?'

Lydia laughed at her husbands' comment.

'I just want her to be a happy little girl.'

'Me too honey...me too.'

May 21st 1988 5.17pm

'What's wrong?' Debra Scott shouted as the doctors immediately swarmed around her child, 'what's wrong with my baby? Why isn't it crying?'

Dan Scott took his wife's hand from under the sheet, the doctors had erected for the emergency cesearean section they'd had to perform. 'It's ok Deb, the baby's going to be ok.'

'Why isn't it crying Dan', his wife sobbed, 'it's too early, I knew it was too early.'

Dan rubbed her arm reassuringly, trying to stay calm. When Deb had felt severe pains in her stomach earlier that afternoon, they had both been alarmed, the baby wasn't due for another month. It was too soon, but as soon as they'd reached the hospital, they had been immediately advised to have a C-section. Apparantly the cord was wrapped around the baby's neck, preventing it from getting any oxygen. The only option had been a cesearean.

Deb had been terrified, Dan unsure of how he felt. He loved his wife, but he wasn't sure how he felt about the baby. Of course he didn't want anything to happen to it, but he wasn't too sure how he'd adapt to having another person in his life, he had to look after.

He was only 19 for god's sake. And he was already the father of two child.... no he wouldn't go there he wouldn't allow his mind to wander to Karen, to Karen and her son, his son, Lucas, that's what she'd called him. He had stayed at Deb's house on the day the child was born 3 months ago. Keith had phoned, told him to get his ass to the hospital, but Dan had told him in no uncertain terms that he shouldn't phone him about Karen, that he didn't want Deb to know. That he didn't want to know.

He had another family now.

He saw a future with Deb, he saw power, success, there was love there too, but with Karen, love was all they had. And then she'd ruined it all and gotton pregnant. He had been furious, with her, with God, with both of them, she knew how important his basketball scholarship was to him. So he'd told her to deal with it, had even offered her money to take care of it. She'd been angry, hurt. He'd gone to College met Deb, but he couldn't quite stop himself thinking about Karen, so he'd phoned her, told her he was sorry, they'd give it a try, they'd give a family a try.

But on the very same night, as he went to inform Deb of the truth about him and Karen and their baby, he'd found her crying. She was crying because she was pregnant. Dan was screwed, whichever way he looked at it.

He did what every intelligent person would do and weighed up the pro's and cons of both girls.

Deb won.

The deciding factor, the capital, Deb was rich, her father was a business tycoon, he would see that they were alright. Karen's father had died when she was nine. They were barely scraping by as it was. No he would be better off with Deb in the long run.

And so he had stayed with her the day his first child was born. He ignored Keith's calls, he watched the NBA, he and Deb went for dinner. He tried to keep all thoughts of the dark haired cheerleader he'd fallen in love with from his mind.

And it had almost worked...almost.

'Your son is very sick I'm afraid.' The doctor broke into his thoughts. 'He was severely deprived of oxygen in the womb and it's caused him to struggle to breathe.'

Son, he had another son?

Deb sobbed beside him, Dan grasped her hand tightly.

'Um...what can you do for him doc?'

'We are going to put him onto a ventilator, hopefully that will aid him, until he's able to breathe on his own.'

Deb wailed, and Dan kissed her gently on the forhead. 'He'll be alright Deb.'

He turned to the doctor, 'can we see him?'

'He's been moved to the neonatal intensive care unit.' The doctor replied, 'but you can come with me and see him there if you'd like.'

'I want to see him.' Deb spoke up.

'Mrs Scott, you need to let my colleagues finish up with you first ok, then I promise we'll take you to see your baby.'

Deb sniffed loudly, and turned to her husband, looking very much like the scared eighteen year old she was. 'Go see him Dan, go see our baby. Tell him mommy loves him please.'

Dan nodded, and squeezed her hand one last time before following the doctor out of the room.

When they reached the NICU, Dan swallowed hard, trying to steal himself, before he entered. The doctor led him towards a bassinet at the far side of the room.

'Mr Scott, this is your son.' He said gruffly before moving away.

For a moment Dan couldn't breathe. The air literally would not come to his lungs. He stared into the plastic chamber, and stared at his baby.

He was tiny, so very tiny, he lay on his back, his head lying facing Dan. His little fist curled and uncurled at his side and his lips puckered endearingly. Dan felt his heart quicken and the walls around his heart begin to crumble.

This little baby was his son. He helped to make this tiny person, and now he was fighting for his life.

Emotion caused a huge lump to appear in Dan's throat and he found it hard to shift it. He had a chance with this baby, he had a chance, a fresh start to make a difference, to teach him things, to help him become the person Dan had always wanted to be, but fallen short of.

He had another chance with this baby.

A rush of love hit him in the chest and almost sucker punched the air out again. He wanted to protect this child, he wanted to love it, and teach it and mould it into the kind of person he had wanted to be.

He wanted this baby.

He wanted this chance.

Never had he felt love like this before, not with Karen, not with Deb, not with his family. In some way they had all let him down, they all disappointed him. This baby was his son, and this baby would be his, and it would love him unconditionally, and always.

He would look up to his dad, and adore him.

'You can touch him if you like?' A nurse appeared next to him, just wash your hands over there and you can touch him. Dan washed his hands like a robot, completely thrown by the feelings that had swamped him towards the tiny scrap of humanity before him.

He gently put his hand throught a slot in the side of the bassinette.

And almost without thinking the baby wrapped its tiny little fist around Dan's finger.

'What's his name?' The nurse asked gently.

'Nathan', Dan croaked back, hardly trusting himself to speak. 'Nathan Daniel Scott.'

The nurse smiled, 'well Nathan certainly knows his Daddy.'

She walked away and left Dan alone, he stared, oblivious to her exit, and to the tears that were rolling down his cheeks, 'Hello Nathan...' he whispered, 'I'm your Daddy...it's just you and me now.'

Next time on TTEOAC The kids turn one