A/N: I've been bitten by the writing bug. I just keep popping out stories left and right, not to mention my non fanfiction works are running smoothly. It feels good. This oneshot was not intended to be a songfic...but then I remembered this song and thought it really fit. So I kind of worked backwards if you think about it. It's set after the season two finale. Some things have been changed around just to make it work legistically.

Disclaimer: I don't own One Tree Hill or the song "I'll Be There."


You and I must make a pact

We must bring salvation back

Where there is love

I'll be there.

Every night when the clock strikes one, he comes to her bedside. There isn't a night he misses. It started as a comforting gesture during a tumultuous summer. She had been crying on the beach. Tears that never seemed to end and stained his shirt. She cried for her deadmother. For Jake. For Jenny. She cried to forget this new woman claiming to be her mother. She couldn't stop crying. All the pain had gathered and climaxed at this point. This was her breaking point and it came on this beach in the arms of a man who had already caused her so much heartbreak.

I'll reach out my hand to you

I'll have faith in all you do

Just call my name

And I'll be there

But he stayed. He stayed with her on that beach. He held her in his arms, placed small kisses on her forehead and the top of her head. He held her as close as he could. He wished that he could soak up her pain just by holding her. He knew that couldn't happen, but he would be there for her this summer. To prove he was a good friend. To gain her trust back. It was a silent promise he made.

I'll be there to comfort you

Build my world of dreams around you

I'm so glad that I found you

I'll be there with a love that's strong

I'll be your strength

I'll keep holding on

When her tears had subsided as much as they could, he took her home and tucked her into bed. He had all intentions of going home and coming back in the morning to check on her. But as he was leaning over her to pull up the blanket, he spotted her drawings on the wall. There were plenty of them that his eyes could have fallen upon, but only one caught his eye. People always leave. The motto of her life that always proved true, most recently with Jake. And he decided that he would not be one of the leavers. He laid down next to her, wrapping his arms around her waist and pulling her against him. And within minutes, they were both asleep.

Let me fill your heart with joy and laughter

Togetherness is all I'm after

Whenever you need me

I'll be there

He came back the next night, convincing himself that it was to check on her. They hung out, watched a couple of cheesy comedies and listened to music. Most importantly he kept her smiling. He made her forget about everything that was going on. Night rolled around and neither wanted to go. It was one o'clock when they both fell onto her bed laughing hysterically at some joke. When the laughing died down, they wallowed in a comfortable silence. Soon they were both asleep.

I'll be there to protect you

With an unselfish love

I'll respect you

Just call my name

And I'll be there

It became a habit for Lucas to fall asleep with the curly blonde in his arms. It was just so good to hold someone. His heart was so heavy with everything that had happened this year. With her, he could let go. He knew she needed him, even if she would never say it. And he knew he needed her even if he was too afraid to admit it. They had hurt each other in the past, but during those nights, they were the only ones there to pick up the pieces of each others shattered hearts. His actions were done purely out of selflessness. He wanted to make her stronger. She knew that and that's why she let him stay.

If you should ever find someone new

I know she'd better be good to you

'Cos if she doesn't

I'll be there

The first true test of their bond came when summer ended. The day Brooke returned. Peyton assumed that Lucas wouldn't show up that night. After all, Brooke did own his heart. He couldn't risk being caught in the same bed as Brooke's best friend. He didn't say anything about it, but she wasn't expecting an explanation. She went to bed early that first night hoping that she would sleep through the hour when he usually showed up. Instead she found herself awake staring at the clock. Then, at one o'clock on the dot, she felt a tear slide down her cheek. She couldn't help feeling a little pang in her chest. She had grown accustomed to sleeping next to someone. At least, that's what she told herself.

You and I must make a pact

We must bring salvation back

Where there is love

I'll be there

But at 1:01, he walked through her door. No words were spoken. He simply removed his shoes and jacket and laid down beside her. She turned to face him, looking deep in his eyes and smiled a small smile before wrapping her arms around him and burying her head in his chest. He smiled, though she couldn't see it. He had wondered whether it would be appropriate to come back to her tonight. With Brooke back and all, he should really focus on winning her heart. But as much as he debated, he couldn't stand the thought of sleeping alone that night. And the look on her face when he entered her room was enough of a reason to keep coming. Besides, he was just being a good friend. At least, that's what he told himself.

I'll reach out my hand to you

I'll have faith in all you do

Just call my name

And I'll be there

The school year started and Brooke finally started dating Lucas, but that didn't change anything. If Brooke ever wondered why Lucas didn't spend the night with her, she didn't ask. He always seemed to leave just before one. He said it was because of his mother and Brooke trusted him. That was the painful part. He had to lie to her. Because she would never understand why he spent the night in the arms of another woman. Especially if that woman was Peyton Sawyer.The guilt didn't lie solely on Lucas's shoulders.Peyton felt guilty too, but she was too selfish to let him go. He had stayed when everyone else left. She wasn't going to push him away.

I'll be there to comfort you

Build my world of dreams around you

I'm so glad that I found you

I'll be there with a love that's strong

I'll be your strength

I'll keep holding on

In all that time together, they never once kissed. Not that they hadn't wanted to. There had been times when Peyton thought she should show her gratitude with a small peck on the lips. There were times when Lucas watched her sleep and thought how nice it would be to brush his lips against hers. But they suppressed those urges fearing they might lose what they had now. They both felt so rooted in each other that they couldn't stand the idea of risking it over attraction. Besides, Lucas had realized early on in the summer that they were soul mates. Eventually they'd find their way. Now was not the right time though. She still loved Jake and he still loved Brooke and neither knew how deep the others feelings were for each other. But he had a feeling that all future paths would lead to her. Because it always came back to her.