Chapter 5

Nathan sat next to Brooke on the couch in the living room of his house. They were playing one of his football video games, and couldn't seem to stop laughing. Brooke reached over and tried to mess him up by swatting at his controller and hitting the buttons, causing Nathan to chuckle.

"Your such a cheater!" Nathan exclaimed.

"Am not!" Brooke cried with a giggle.

"What do you call messing with my controller and constantly trying to distract me?" Nathan asked with an amused smile

"Strategy...I haven't resorted to flashing you yet have I?" Brooke joked with a laugh.

"We could pause the game for that one." Nathan teased and she slapped his arm.

"Why can't you just...let me win?" Brooke complained with a smile.

"What fun would that be?" Nathan smirked as he beat her in the game once again. "HA! All of that distraction and I still owned you!" he taunted playfully. Brooke went to hit him but her caught her balled up fist and started tickling her like crazy. Brooke laughed hysterically as she squirmed beneath him.

"Nathan...please stop...I'm going to pee my pants!" Brooke exclaimed giggling uncontrollably.

"Hey...sorry, your mom let me in. If this is a bad time I can come back." Peyton interrupted suddenly as she entered the room. Nathan and Brooke stilled staring at Peyton with their mouths hanging open and they quickly backed away from each other.

"No, this isn't a bad time." Nathan replied.

"I'm just gonna go and leave you two alone." Brooke offered. "I'll kick your ass later." she smiled at Nathan referring to the game.

"Yeah...okay." Nathan laughed sarcastically. Peyton raised a questioning eyebrow at Brooke as she walked passed her with a smile. Peyton further entered the room taking Brooke's place on the couch.

"What was that all about?" Peyton asked with a smile.

"Nothing...just two friends hanging out." Nathan offered shrugging with a grin. "So...what brings you here?" he inquired.

"I just wanted to see how you were doing. We haven't gotten a chance to talk much, and I know that a lot has been going on in your life." Peyton explained.

"Maybe that's because you've been so preoccupied with Lucas." Nathan responded sounding more coldly than he would have liked. Peyton gave him a look, causing him to look away. "I'm sorry...I shouldn't have said that." he offered.

"Are you okay after everything that's happened with Haley?" Peyton asked.

"That question is like a broken record." Nathan admitted with a laugh. "I'm doing great. That's all in the past and I've moved on. I have important things to focus on. We're young Peyton, life doesn't stop when bad things have to keep living and work through the hard times. You have to remember that there's better things that lie ahead. Which is what I've been doing." he explained. "Is Haley doing okay?" he asked suddenly looking at her. Her lips curved forming a small smile.

"She's doing good. You know Haley, she's a strong girl. She'll be okay." Peyton offered. "She still cares about you Nate." she added with a warm smile.

"I still care about her too. I always will." Nathan admitted softly.

"I know." Peyton smiled.

"So, what's going on with you and Lucas? Are you guys like...together now?" Nathan asked, his expression changing as he looked at her curiously.

"No.." Peyton answered carefully fidgeting uncomfortably. She knew the subject of Lucas wasn't the best thing to be talking to Nathan about. There was just too much bitterness and anger between the two of them. She knew all too well how stubborn Nathan could be sometimes. Not that he didn't have every right to be angry with Lucas.

"Let me guess, your just friends?" Nathan questioned sarcastically.

"Nathan, Lucas has really been there for me. I have a lot going on in my life right now and he's stuck by me and supported me through it all. I know your upset with him because he lied and hurt you. You have every right to feel that way, but is it really worth completely ending your relationship over? Your matter what, you'll always be brothers." Peyton reasoned.

"No, we're not brothers and we're not friends either. Peyton if you want to let him back in your life and give him another chance to hurt you than I can't stop you. Lucas knew what he was doing, he's not stupid. He destroyed our friendship, not me. You can do better than him. The guy doesn't even know what he wants. One minute he's professing his feelings for Brooke, the next minute he's completely there for you? I just wouldn't want to see you set yourself up for another heartbreak." Nathan explained honestly causing Peyton to look away.

"He's changed...he's worked really hard to regain my trust. Whenever I need him he's always there...he's just different with me. I know he really cares about you Nate, and this is all effecting him more than you know. Maybe if you could just..." Peyton began.

"Drop it." Nathan cut her off. "Look, I respect your decision but I've made up my mind. Lucas is just another guy on the team, nothing more. I know you feel the need to help you little boyfriend but I'm not budging on this one." he answered seriously. "What's going on in your life anyway? I mean you said a lot is going on right now." he inquired with concern. Peyton let out a small sigh before speaking.

"The woman I knew as my mother my entire life, might not have been my biological mother." Peyton admitted, sadness taking over her features. It was hard for her to admit and say out loud. Nathan's mouth hung open in shock. That was the last thing he had expected to hear. He knew losing her mother at such a young age had been hard for her.

"I don't understand how that's even possible." Nathan replied obviously perplexed.

"Neither do I. I don't even know myself. I honestly don't really want to talk about it. I don't even want to think about it but it keeps haunting me." Peyton admitted trying not to tear up. He nodded understandingly deciding not to press the issue. If she ever wanted to talk to him about it, she would when she was ready.

"Okay, well you could always pick up the controller and I could kick your ass in basketball." Nathan shrugged playfully with a cocky smirk.

"I don't know. I wouldn't want to embarrass you." Peyton teased as a smile played across her face.

"Those are fighting words...that's it pick up the controller. Your about to get owned." Nathan chuckled as she grabbed the controller.

"The only one who's going to get owned is you." Peyton declared.

"Your getting kind of kinky Peyton...but you were always kind of a freak." Nathan smirked playfully.

"You wish." Peyton replied sticking her tongue at him.

"Nah, been there...done that." Nathan teased with a grin. Peyton let out a laugh punching him hard on the arm. He chuckled as they turned their attention to the game.


Karen wandered around her cafe still trying to get used to the new look of her surroundings. Haley came up from behind the counter and watched her with an amused smile.

"I think Lucas did a really great job of remodeling this place over the summer. It's much more...hip." Haley smiled with an affirmative nod. Karen smiled turning her attention to Haley.

"It's's just going to take some getting used too. I'm so used to the old look of things. It's the way the cafe has looked for years. I'm not so sure how long this new hip look will last." Karen explained with a grin as she sat at the counter across from Haley. "It looks like Lucas had some help remodeling the place." she commented offering a smirk.

"Blame that on Peyton." Haley laughed.

"I thought it had kind of an artistic flare." Karen chuckled. "So, Lucas and Peyton seem to have been spending a lot of time together." she added.

"Who knows what's going on between those two." Haley shrugged. "I don't even think they know half the time." she joked with a laugh.

"Peyton told me you and Chris are supposed to be performing at TRIC on all ages night." Karen added.

"Yeah, we're performing the duet." Haley smiled.

"So, what was it like being on tour?" Karen asked with interest, bringing an instant smile to Haley's face.

"It was an incredible experience. I mean traveling and seeing different places, meeting new people, but most of all being on stage and performing. It's just amazing how music can effect so many different people from different backgrounds and different walks of life in so many ways. It was a lot of fun, truly a once in a lifetime opportunity and I thank God that I was given the chance to experience it." Haley explained with a smile and her eyes seemed to sparkle.

"Your eyes light up when you talk about music." Karen smiled observantly.

"It's my passion. It's in my heart and soul." Haley admitted with a smile.

"And what about Chris?" Karen questioned curiously.

"We're friends, and he's been really great to me through this whole thing. He's been so supportive and I just wish everyone would given him a chance, especially Lucas. Chris isn't a bad guy. I mean, yeah he can be arrogant and cocky but he's not always like that. I'm really glad I met him and that he's in my life, despite everything that's happened." Haley answered.

"I'm sure eventually Lucas will come around." Karen reassured her. They both turned their heads at the sound of the Cafe door opening, and Lucas walked in.

"Hello ex-brother in law." Haley smiled as Lucas approached them.

"Ouch, I kind of prefer Lucas, best friend." Lucas chuckled as he took a seat next to his mother.

"Okay, Brooke." Haley laughed sarcastically.

"So what are my two favorite women up too?" Lucas inquired with a smirk. Haley looked around the room acting confused.

"That's funny, I don't see Peyton here." Haley teased with a smile.

"Very funny." Lucas smirked.

"Are you and Nathan back on speaking terms yet?" Karen questioned curiously.

"If you consider 'watch where your going punk' speaking, then yes he's talking to me." Lucas replied with a slight chuckle.

"You two are co-captains of the basketball team, your bound to start speaking again." Haley reasoned.

"We speak to each other when we have too, we run plays together, pass the ball to each other...but that's as far as it goes. I wish it were different but it's not. Nathan can't stand me. " Lucas admitted sadly.

"Nathan's stubborn but eventually he'll come around. You two will always be brothers and despite how he might act I know he cares about you." Haley offered.

"I don't know Hales. I think I really screwed things up this time. He and I started out hating each other and then when we finally got to a point where it really felt like we were brothers, I messed it all up." Lucas answered honestly. Karen placed a sympathetic hand on her son's shoulder giving it a gentle squeeze.

"If you can manage to repair things with Brooke and Peyton, I'm sure you can work something out." Haley teased. Lucas grabbed the towel off of the counter and threw it at her playfully.


Brooke had just finished changing her clothes and applying fresh make up when she heard a knock on her bedroom door. She opened the door to see a clearly distraught Peyton. Concern washed over Brooke's face as she let Peyton inside and closed the door behind them. She immediately pulled Peyton into a hug.

"What's wrong sweetie?" Brooke asked with concern.

"Is Lucas here?" Peyton inquired after releasing her.

"No, he's not here." Brooke answered.

"My father called and I wasn't home so he left a message. The one time I'm not home and he calls." Peyton cried emotionally.

"What did he say?" Brooke asked.

"He apologized for not getting back to me sooner and said how my message worried him because it sounded so urgent. He's been really busy but he's gonna return home soon. He said he'd try to call me again before he does." Peyton explained sadly.

"Oh God, Peyton I'm so sorry." Brooke answered hugging her again.

"His boat docks in Charleston tonight." Peyton continued.

"Then let's go, I'll take you." Lucas interrupted from the doorway, causing Brooke and Peyton to turn their heads in surprise.

"I can't. Tonight is all ages night at TRIC. I can't let your mother down Lucas, she counts on me." Peyton shook her head.

"Peyton, my mother would understand." Lucas reassured.

"Thank you for offering though." Peyton added appreciatively with a sad smile. Lucas frowned knowing she had made up her mind.

"I'll do it." Brooke announced suddenly. "I'll help out with TRIC, while you go to Charleston with Lucas." she offered.

"Brooke, you don't know anything about running a club." Peyton answered doubtfully.

"So? How hard could it be? I'll have both Karen and Haley to help me out. With the three of us things should be fine. You obviously need to talk to your father Peyton and this is your chance." Brooke insisted.

"She's right." Lucas agreed. Peyton thought it over for a briefly moment before deciding.

"Okay, let's go." Peyton gave in finally.

"I hope you get the answers your looking for." Brooke whispered as she hugged her once again. Peyton held her tightly before letting go.

"Thank you." Peyton replied softly. Lucas gave Brooke a wave of his hand as he left the room with Peyton.


Lucas and Peyton sat in his car together and so far the drive to Charleston had been fairly silent. Lucas had shot a few stolen glances at Peyton every so often, and he could feel her eyes on him when she did the same. He hated seeing her angelic face so filled with sorrow.

"I don't even know what to say to him when I see him." Peyton confessed suddenly breaking the silence.

"Just speak from your heart." Lucas answered looking over at her.

"Maybe he'll have a really good explanation and it'll somehow turn out Elizabeth is lying." Peyton added, hope lighting up her face.

"I don't know what your father is going to say to you Peyton, but at least you'll finally have some answers. No matter what the outcome, I'll always be here for you." Lucas promised and their eyes met.

"I know you will." Peyton admitted gazing at him. "Your there for me even when I won't let you be. I know I don't always make it easy...and sometimes you deserve it." she smiled pausing briefly. "Thank you Lucas. Your the one person I can always count on. You know I'm always here for you too." she added softly squeezing his hand gently. He took her hand in his squeezing it back. Their eyes met once again, connecting in a way that only they could.

Even the best fall down sometimes

Even the wrong words seem to rhyme

Out of the doubt that fills my mind

I somehow find

You and I collide

You finally find

You and I collide

You finally find

You and I collide


Brooke impatiently knocked on Nathan's door until the door finally swung open and he stood on the other side looking at her curiously.

"Brooke" Nathan spoke as he stood in the doorway.

"The one and only." Brooke smiled. "Guess who's running things at TRIC tonight? I'll tell you, me! And you better be there." she grinned.

"Since when? And I don't think so." Nathan replied.

"Since Peyton left town with Lucas to go confront Papa Sawyer, and why not?" Brooke asked placing her hands on her hips.

"Because Chris and Haley are going to be performing tonight." Nathan sighed.

"So? I thought you were over Haley." Brooke reminded.

"I am over Haley. I just can't stand that guy." Nathan explained. Brooke crossed her arms over her chest firmly still not willing to give up.

"Nathan, you have to come! Please!" Brooke pouted. Nathan smirked and she knew she had gotten her way.

"Fine, but I'm not watching them perform." Nathan agreed reluctantly.

"I'll see you there." Brooke squealed as she happily skipped away.


They pulled up a few blocks away from the location where her father's boat was supposed to be docked, and got out of the car and began walking. It was a long car ride but they had enjoyed each other's company. Plus, it didn't hurt that they had a bunch of music to listen to along the way.

"Do you know what his boat looks like?" Lucas asked. Peyton responded by shaking her head 'no'. She felt like her stomach was tied in knots. She looked around searching with her eyes until she spotted a group of men walking up the dock. "We could ask someone..." he suggested. Peyton suddenly ran forward recognizing the back of her father's head.

"Dad!" Peyton called out while Lucas followed closely behind her. Larry's head whipped around at the sound of a very familiar voice.

"Peyton!" Larry uttered in complete shock at the sight of his daughter.


Karen had only seemed slightly freaked out to find out Brooke would be taking Peyton's place tonight. After she found out why Peyton had left she soon recovered realizing there was a good reason for her absence. There was a pretty good turn out, it seemed like everyone who lived in Tree Hill had packed the place tonight which made Brooke a bit nervous. She scanned the room and smiled when she spotted Nathan who had arrived with Tim not too long ago.

"I almost thought you weren't going to show." Brooke admitted as she approached.

"Now how could I resist an invitation from Brooke Davis?" Nathan teased.

"Very true." Brooke agreed flashing a sweet smile. "I have to say you boys do look good tonight." she added smirking flirtatiously.

"Maybe I'll get lucky tonight." Tim smiled excitedly looking around the room.

"I didn't say you looked that good." Brooke teased with a laugh and Nathan chuckled while Tim pouted. "Now, if you'll excuse me I have some things to do. I mean I am in charge tonight." she added with a wink.

"That's a scary thought." Nathan joked and Brooke slapped his arm playfully before walking off.

"Okay, so what's going on with you and Brooke?" Tim asked curiously. Nathan looked at him oddly.

"What are you talking about?" Nathan asked in confusion.

"You two have been hanging out a lot more than you used too. Plus, the innocent flirting and the touchage." Tim pointed out observantly.

"Touchage?" Nathan laughed with an amused grin.

"Come on Nate, fess up. Are you hittin' it?" Tim asked with a goofy smile.

"What? No! It's nothing like that. Have you been taking you meds?" Nathan questioned sarcastically with a chuckle.

"Whatever, The Tim knows what he sees. It's as obvious as Peyton's attraction to me." Tim insisted. Nathan laughed nearly spitting out his drink. "What?" he asked.

"Dude, Peyton is not into you, she barely even talks to you." Nathan reminded.

"Duh, she's playing hard to get. Plus, she's shy when it comes to The Tim." Tim gushed offering a cocky smile.

"Whatever you say Tim." Nathan chuckled shaking his head.

"I was kind of surprised you even wanted to come here tonight. It's gotta be awkward watching Haley perform and be all buddy-buddy with the guy that ruined your marriage." Tim admitted.

"Chris didn't ruin our marriage, and I promised Brooke I'd come. I already told you that." Nathan replied.

"If it weren't for Chris there would have never been any trouble between you and Haley. It all began when he entered the picture." Tim pointed out.

"Yeah, and Haley's one of the smartest people I know. She made her own decisions, no one forced her to do anything." Nathan answered.

"So, you don't feel at all awkward?" Tim asked in disbelief.

"No, I don't feel awkward." Nathan replied becoming annoyed.

"Good, because there they are." Tim responded. Nathan turned his head in the direction Tim was looking, and spotted Haley and Chris over by the stage. His eyes locked with hers and she offered a small smile. He smiled back a smile similar to her own, turning his attention back to Tim and shrugging to signify that it didn't bother him.

"Can we talk about something else now?" Nathan suggested to which Tim agreed with a nod.

"So who do you think tried to kill your father?" Tim asked suddenly.

"Gee, your just full of great conversation tonight." Nathan replied sarcastically.

"Come on, like you haven't thought about it!" Tim explained. "Everyone in this town is a suspect." he whispered looking around the room suspiciously.

"I can't argue with you there. A lot of people have reasons to hate Dan Scott." Nathan admitted.

"No kidding, even his own could have easily been you or Lucas." Tim reminded, his eyes wide.

"You think I tried to kill my own father?" Nathan questioned raising an eyebrow.

"Maybe all of those years of bullying finally wore you out. Your entire life all your Dad has ever done is push you and harp on you. He was always trying to control you, maybe you finally snapped." Tim reasoned.

"When did you become Sherlock Holmes? I didn't try to kill my father." Nathan stated with a glare causing Tim to shut up. "You could be on the right track about Lucas. He was trying to bring Dan down for months. Think about it, all those years of bottled up emotions. The anger and bitterness of being abandoned, all the suffering he and Karen had to endure." he added.

"Dude, it could have been Haley!" Tim exclaimed.

"Haley?" Nathan uttered practically laughing at the thought.

"Yeah, just think about it. Your father wasn't exactly the biggest fan of your marriage. Isn't he the one that pushed you towards the annulment? Maybe she just went crazy and lit his office on fire in a fit of rage after coming back off tour." Tim answered, his face lighting up as the thoughts danced wildly in his head.

"Well, he was the one who served her the annulment papers. But I can't imagine Haley trying to kill anyone...not even Dan." Nathan chuckled.

"What about your Mom?" Tim suggested.

"My Mom isn't a killer, she'd never do something like that. Besides...she's been dealing with his crap for years." Nathan replied.

"I suppose it could have been Luke's Mom." Tim shrugged.

"I doubt it, she was in New Zealand with Andy. Although I don't think my father and Andy got along very well." Nathan admitted.

"Okay, so who do you think did it then?" Tim asked.

"Knowing Dan, he probably did it himself and staged his own death. He always did love attention." Nathan joked and Tim's mouth dropped open obviously taking him seriously. "Tim, I was joking! My father loves himself way too much for that." he laughed. "It could have even been you." he pointed out.

"Me?" Tim uttered in surprise.

"Well, did always have a thing for my Mom." Nathan teased.


Brooke approached Chris and Haley who were standing near the stage where they would be performing shortly. She offered them both a cheery smile.

"This isn't the brand of water I asked for Davis." Chris announced in a dull tone holding up the bottle of water. Brooke and Haley looked at each other, then rolled their eyes with a laugh. "I wasn't joking. I'll also need some hot tea with honey." he added with a cocky smirk to which Brooke raised a well-plucked eyebrow in disbelief. "It helps with the vocals." he added.

"Brooke don't listen to him. He's too high maintenance for his own good. Your doing a wonderful job." Haley smiled genuinely.

"Thanks, you know at first I was nervous but this is actually really cool. Plus, Peyton had a lot of the hard stuff already taken care of before she left and of course Karen has been a major help." Brooke explained with a smile.

"I'll also be expecting you to be waiting in my dressing room wearing nothing but black lingerie, ready and willing to have sex with Chris Keller." Chris grinned referring to Brooke.

"Not even in your dreams Mr. Tight Pants." Brooke smirked.

"Please, I know your a Chris Keller groupie Brooke." Chris taunted.

"Why do you hang out with him?" Brooke asked Haley.

"Mmm...could it be my devastatingly good looks, pouty lips, amazing talent, swoonful charm, and winning personality?" Chris grinned arrogantly.

"Your unbelievable." Brooke and Haley spoked at the same time both rolling their eyes. Brooke didn't think she had ever known someone so cocky.

"Yes, I am." Chris agreed conceitedly.

"I swear he's not always such a jackass." Haley laughed.

"I've never met anyone who was so in love with themselves." Brooke responded with a small chuckle.

"Come on Brooke, I'm sure you've looked in the mirror." Chris teased with a smirk awarding him a smack on each arm from both girls. "Ouch." he groaned.

"Anyway..." Brooke announced. "Karen just informed me that you'll both be performing a couple of songs separately and then end it with the big duet. Chris is up first and you'll be on in 5." she informed before walking off.

"Don't lingerie." Chris called with a cocky grin. "Are you going to be able to do this Haley?" he asked turning to her seriously and Haley's fake smile seemed to melt away.

"I wasn't expecting Nathan to be here tonight." Haley admitted with a sigh.

"But you must have realized there was a possibility." Chris reminded.

"He's never actually had to see us perform that song together. It might hurt him and I wouldn't want to put him through anymore than I already have." Haley answered.

"I'm sure he'll be fine. He looks like he's having a great time." Chris insisted as they both looked over at Nathan. "You can't just avoid performing whenever Nathan is around. Are you sure that's the real reason why?" he asked directly.

"What's that supposed to mean?" Haley questioned folding her arms across her chest and sighing.

"Maybe your the one who isn't over it." Chris shrugged honestly.


Larry continued to stare at his daughter in complete shock. He told the other workers he was with to go ahead without him. He met Peyton half way and pulled her into a hug as soon as he reached her. Despite the possibility of her father lying to her for years, she held him tightly and felt safe in his arms. It had been months since she had seen him last and she really did miss him when he was gone. Lucas watched the display with a small smile. Larry released his daughter from the loving embrace, setting his eyes on Lucas.

"Rake boy." Larry nodded acknowledging Lucas.

"I guess I'm really never gonna live that down." Lucas chuckled slightly blushing, causing Larry and Peyton to laugh as well.

"Not in this lifetime." Larry teased. "Peyton, what are you doing here? The messages you've been leaving me have me worried sick." he began.

"But not worried enough to come home." Peyton replied sarcastically.

"That's not know I had some important business I had to finish. I told you I'd be home soon once I'm done, didn't you get my message? What's so important that it couldn't wait?" he asked with concern.

"I think your the one who has some explaining to do." Peyton responded.

"What are you talking about?" Larry asked feeling confused.

"Who is Elizabeth, Dad? This woman came to me claiming to be my mother but that's not possible right? Tell me this isn't true. Is Anna my biological mother? You wouldn't keep something like that from me." Peyton replied, her voice trembled laced with emotion and she felt as if she were almost trying to convince herself he'd never lie to her. As soon as she mentioned the name Elizabeth all the color in her father's face seemed to drain. He looked as if he had been punched so hard in the stomach he couldn't breathe. Peyton stared at him intensely waiting for him to answer but he couldn't seem to speak. This was all too much. She knew from the look on his face the answer wasn't one she wanted to hear, and tears seemed to gush from her eyes. She couldn't handle this. She felt like all of her walls were caving in on her.

"Oh God." Peyton choked crying hard. Larry didn't even know what to say or how to comfort her. Needless to say he hadn't been expecting this. Lucas looked on wanting nothing more than to hold Peyton in his arms, but he knew she and her father needed this time. "It's true isn't it. You've been lying to me this whole time, my entire life!" she cried suddenly becoming angry while hot tears streamed down her face.

"Peyton..." Larry uttered taking a step closer to her but she backed away.

"Don't come near me, don't touch me." Peyton sobbed.

"Peyton, I'm so sorry. I know your confused and hurt. You have every right to be angry and feel whatever it is your feeling. You deserve an explanation...but not here and not like this." Larry replied soothingly his face stricken with sadness and worry.

"You've been lying to me all these years." Peyton cried. She couldn't take this anymore, she had reached her breaking point. It was all too much to handle. Before Larry could respond or do anything she turned and walked away, storming passed Lucas and in the direction of where they had parked. Larry nearly ran after her, but he knew he couldn't. The look she held in her eyes was killing him. Lucas stood there looking at him sympathetically.

"Lucas..." Larry began unsure of what to say, but Lucas wasn't looking at him with judging eyes and he knew that.

"She needs have to come home." Lucas stated before he could say anything. Larry agreed with a nod.

"I have obligations...but once their tied up I'm coming home...and I'm gonna be around and in my daughter's life a lot more often." Larry swore. "Take care of her for me Lucas, be there for her while I can't. I know how much you care about her." he added.

"You don't even have to ask, I'll do anything I can for her. She means everything to me, and I know she means the world to you too." Lucas admitted. "Whatever happened in the past, has been said and done. All we have is the present and the future. You have a beautiful daughter who deserves to know the truth. Just try to hurry and get home soon...the last thing you want is to have her slip away from you and lose her completely. Without having her in your life you'll be incomplete, trust me I know." he explained.

"Thank you Lucas." Larry answered in a heartfelt tone. Lucas offered a sympathetic smile before turning around and heading in the direction Peyton had gone.


Nathan sat in his chair at TRIC scanning the room. Both Haley and Chris had already performed solo and now it was time for the duet. The song slowly began and Nathan watched as everyone seemed to pair up, even Tim had found a dance partner in Bevin. He watched them perform until it became too much too handle. Visions of Haley's infidelity began to play through his head. He stood up from his chair and made his way through the crowd heading towards the exit deciding to get some fresh air. He walked outside onto the steps and immediately spotted a petite brunette sitting all alone. He took a seat beside her and they both remained silent for a moment.

"Shouldn't you be inside?" Nathan asked glancing at her.

"I just had to get out of there you know?" Brooke replied glancing back at him.

"Yeah, I know exactly what you mean." Nathan agreed with a nod. "Feeling lonely?" he asked.

"It's funny how you can be in a room with a ton of people, even if their your friends, and still feel all alone." Brooke answered with a sad glint in her eyes. Nathan placed an understanding hand on her knee.

"We can be lonely together." Nathan replied, a warm smile forming on her face when their eyes met. The light seemed to hit his blue eyes in just the right way and she became mesmerized by the way he was looking at her. They both seemed to move in close until his lips were inches away lingering above hers. He tilted his head and they both leaned in, his lips barely brushing hers in the softest kiss sending butterflies swirling in her stomach as her heart raced.

See I'm going through a situation

That I can't help

Wanna get a little closer

But I promised myself

That I would never give me heart

Away again

Oh, I know it's hard but you gotta understand it

The truth is gonna hurt

And the shit that you get

When you have it

Ain't worth it

I've been there so many times

I should know better but I

Can't stop what I feel when your next to me

I really think I...

"Oh My God!" A feminine voice exclaimed from behind them. They both immediately jumped moving apart.

"Bevin!" Brooke cried but it was too late. Bevin had already scampered off. She and Nathan stood up awkwardly.

"I should get going." Nathan spoke quickly.

"...and I should really go talk to Bevin." Brooke answered immediately as they parted ways.


When Lucas finally got back to the car, he spotted Peyton leaning her back against the car door and crying into her hands. Lucas placed his hands on her shoulders with a look of concern. She wrapped her arms around him, holding him tightly.

"It's true." Peyton murmured into his chest while Lucas rubbed her back in a comforting motion.

"You two still need to talk this out. He'll be home soon Peyton." Lucas reminded combing his fingers through her soft curls.

"I knew it was true deep down...I was just hoping...praying..." Peyton began emotionally.

"You still haven't heard his side." Lucas reminded. "I don't know what to do or say to help you or make things okay. I know there's nothing I can do to make it okay." he admitted into her ear feeling almost helpless.

"Just hold me." Peyton whispered. He tightened his arms around her burying his face into her neck without any intention of ever letting her go. She was going through so much and she just needed to let it out. It was hard trying to be strong when she was nearly breaking down. She wasn't made of stone. She could feel his heart sympathize with hers. He always understood without question or judgement. He knew her. It was in that moment that Peyton realized, he was the one solid thing in her life.

Hold me now I need to feel relief

Like I never wanted anything

I suppose I'll let this go and find a reason I'll hold onto

I'm so ashamed of defeat

And I'm out of reason to believe in me

I'm out of trying to get by

I'm so afraid of the gift you give me

I don't belong here and I'm not well

I'm so ashamed of the lie I'm living

Right on the wrong side of it all


A/N: The songs used in this chapter in italics were The Gift by Seether, You and I Collide by Howie Day, and The One by Mariah Carey. Oh, and if some of you are still reading and not reviewing...which I know some of you are guilty of doing from the hits...please be kind and start leaving reviews. :D

Thanks to: Kels (thanks sweetie) l-a-c-18(well I am really glad that you like the NB parts and the way I portray them. I hope you like them in this chapter and thank you for the review.) kaos2405(thanks) Roxy (thanks) nookieforever07(aw, thank you so much for saying that. I hope you like this chapter just as much.) Song For No One(Wow, that's awesome...I am so happy to hear that. NB really would be great together IMO. lmao I know what you mean about Lucas...I am glad I could make you like him in that chapter and that you really liked everything he said. :) I'm also happy to see some of you are enjoying Chris, and the C/H in the story so far. Thanks for the awesome review.) Ababy99(thanks) Laurie (CONVERT TO NB. :D hug lol I thought you would enjoy that. I will have to check those songs out sometime. I really hope you like this chapter hon.) Mon(hug thanks for always asking me if I have updated. lol. I am really happy you, and some others have taken such an interest in this fic. :D I think it's great you enjoyed the LP...I am happy to hear that. I also like that song by Lifehouse. :) I was surprised a lot of people seem to want Lucas/Nathan to patch things up...I guess we will see. lmao, I'm sorry you don't like C/H. hug And actually liked the NB...don't worry I am not looking at that as you shipping is just nice is all. lol. thanks for the wondeful review. ) Amber(aw, that is so sweet that it brought tears to your eyes. I take that as a compliment. :D thanks for the review sweetie and I hope you like the update.) bitterkidxsweetie( Okay, so I am not and have never been a NP shipper...other than friendship but I did what I could so I hope you enjoyed it. Glad to see you are enjoying the C/H. Really? I thought it was so cute when he blushes. lol. Wow, it seems like you liked the entire last chapter over all abd I am really happy to hear that. Maybe somday you will start shipping NB. innocent :D Thanks for such a sweet review. )cryptic mind (SUG)( hug sigh I just love you reviews...and I love how much you seem to like my writing. So now you know the first scene I was talking about on FF. lol. Your reviews always touch me. :D Not in a perverted kind of way like we are used too though. lol. I'm glad you noiticed all the details in the last chapter. I am also happy to hear you are liking everything between L/N. I guess you will have to wait and see if they ever patch things up...but I think it is safe to say even if they do it won't be easy. ;) Also, happy to hear you understand the emotions going through Nathan about Dan. Aw, it really means a lot to me that you feel that I stay true to the characters because I really do try. :D IDK, perhaps I know the characters too well. lol. I have no doubt that you would like for NH to be friends...and I guess you will see what happens...I kind of teased you in this chapter huh? lol. I am extremely happy to hear you like the NB stuff even though you don't really ship them...and yeah I didn't think the idea of Nathan buying a gift for his Mom seemed OOC, after the way he was towards her at the end of S2 and I also thought it was sweet so I am glad that you liked that part. Wow Trish, you seem to always amaze me. You didn't hate the H/C part! lol. I think it's great that you see all of that and that the kiss surpsied you...I thought it would get some people mad. lol. I'm so ahppy that you loved the LP and that the scene actually had that effect on you. :D Thank you so much for so many kind have no idea how much it means to me that you enjoy my writing so much. Aww, I love you Sug. lol, I am sure that would be a great book. You are just an awesome friend and person, and thank you for checking my stories out even though they are NB. hug No Sug, you are the sweetheart, that's why your nickname is Sug. ) ETBuffster(Jo hug Wow, I am in shock that you read the LP part, but thank you. lol. I am really happy to hear you enjoyed those parts even though you don't ship them. And of course I am always happy to hear you love the NB. I thought NB shopping would be a cute idea.) cabot007(I am really happy to hear you are loving it so far and thank you for the e-mails. I guess you will have to wait and see where it goes...and thank you for being so interested in the story and the nice review.) Nathan4Haley(thanks) mcCrazy(Aww, that's awesome...I'm really happy to hear that and I am glad that my fic could help you feel better. thank you for the kind words.) yaba(A crime? Mmm...I hope I don't get into trouble. lol. Just playin. Thank you so much for saying all that. As a writer, that really means a lot to me that you feel that way about my story. I really hope you continue to enjoy it.) brathanfan(thanks) steph(thanks) LeytonFan5(Kayla, thanks for checking this out! I am happy that you like the way the relationships are developing and thank you for the sweet review. I hope you like this chapter.) Thanks to everyone for the reviews and taking the time to read my story! It really touches me that people seem to like my thank you for that. As always, please REVIEW.

Preview: What's going to happen next with everyone in OTH? Review and find out in the next chapter:D

:) :) WRITIE :) :)