Author's Note: So this is just a one shot that I actually wrote before the premiere, its slighty based off the song The Tide by The Spill Canvas, hence the name. It certainly won't help those of us going through Brucas withdrawls, you've been warned.

The Tide

And he can't understand
How everyone goes on breathing when true love ends
His mother whispers quietly...
Heaven's not a place that you go when you die
It's that moment in life when you actually feel alive
So live for the moment
And take this advice, live by every word
Love is just a hoax so forget anything that you have heard
And live for the moment now

He had known for a while, and in a lot of ways that had only made it hurt worse. She had been his saving grace for so long and he had assumed he had been hers. She had made a fool out of him, while he sat back and watched it happen, refusing to believe the rumors that clung to her like the slightly disheveled hair she returned with after late night study sessions. He had known the very day it started but he couldn't accept it, instead he ignored it, but in the end she accepted it enough for the both of them.

The basketball coach had called a meeting that night; he had left her a note enclosed with his whereabouts and a final sentence confirming his love for her. By the time he arrived back at the apartment she was gone. Her cloths stripped from the closet along with the countless pictures of their life together. It was no longer home without her.

Even when they were fighting he felt her within the house. He remembered the way she would curl up on his side of the bed on the nights he felt it more appropriate to sleep on the couch. Or the way her light foot steps would tread across the hardwood flooring searching for that pint of ice cream to take the edge off, but doing so in such a manner that wouldn't wake him. Everything about her had been perfect, but the pain he had caused her by way of Peyton had tainted her loyal heart. He had broken her fiery spirit, and her dimples seemed to have closed up with the tears that constantly fell from her hazel eyes. Her smiles became forced and her feelings fake. She needed more, and he wasn't enough.

His large hands fitted around his head, holding it up, refusing to let him give up entirely. The beverage in front of him taunted his controlling demeanor. He needed to be able to dictate his life and his choices and alcohol only blurred the lines, almost the way she had. Right and wrong didn't exist to her, she just lived. She celebrated her happiness to the fullest and endured tragedy as it came along. There were no rules considering Brooke Davis, she was there to make things interesting, to test his limits, to be his Cheery.

He made the decision to lift the drink to his mouth, and winced lightly as the vodka burned its way down his throat. The warm aftertaste was a nice reminder of the cool numb feeling his chest seemed to have taken on. College life was supposed to be tough but they were supposed to be able to overcome it together and the simple idea that their love hadn't been strong enough managed to unsettle the great, solid, Lucas Scott. It put doubt in his mind that real love could make it. His parents had been a prime example of love not being enough, and now he and Brooke appeared to be following that same path, proving to the world that love can not and will not conquer all.

After effectively empting his wallet and scrounging up as much of a bracer as he could afford he stumbled out of the bar, and began the walk back to the apartment.

Brooke sat outside of their apartment, hidden behind the tinted windows of a rental car. She had made her way all the way to the airport only to circle back to check up on him. The pain they tossed around had been endless the relationship was doing nothing but hurting both of them and she wouldn't allow it to continue. High school relationships were meant to fall out before college, they were all part of the journey, and they were a step in the direction towards the real thing, but they were not the real thing. But somehow that didn't dull the ache in her chest that yearned for the well being of the blue eyed blonde haired boy that had given her the highest of highs and the lowest of lows.

She caught sight of him as he managed to stumble his way up the steps to their apartment. Even with the more than obvious presence of alcohol in his system he appeared as broody and sullen as ever. His hands remained shoved in his pockets and his head bent downwards towards the ground.

Lucas slammed against the door, frustrated with his inability to open it since he had forgotten his key. He knew drinking was a bad idea. Now he was locked out of the apartment nursing a mixture of anguish and rage that burned into his heart, making it literally feel like it was breaking. He was alone. The one thing he had sought after his entire life was love, and being wanted and accepted and in the end he had pushed that away from himself. He knew he couldn't blame her for everything, no matter how badly he wanted to he was at fault and the guilt was too much. He slid down the wall in defeat, knowing that he needed to cool off before he did something entirely irrational.

Brooke couldn't fight it any longer, she had to see him, but she had to make it fast. The second her feet hit the ground she felt a determination overcome her. Just as she turned the corner she saw him and the pure sight of his spiky hair almost made her turn around. But she couldn't, she owed him this.

His blurred vision allowed him the frame of a young women with long dark hair who seemed quite interested in him. Reluctantly he rose to his feet, turning to face his door. He wasn't up for a late night conversation, or even a simple introduction, he needed to be alone. No, he needed to be with her. He needed to hold her in his arms and promise her that they could make it, that he would do anything in his power to keep her with him. He needed to reassure her the way only he could and he needed to see those dimples that used to widen just at the sight of him.

She watched as his large, rough hands fidgeted with the door, trying to break it open. She couldn't help but wonder what was going through his mind. He had always been so together, always with reason.


He immediately froze at his name, and the voice. Her small hand pushed his to the side and he watched as she jiggled the lock open with the key that she couldn't have left behind. She pushed the door open and led the way inside the apartment, leaving him to chase after her the way he always had.

She started a pot of coffee and turned to him. She hadn't really looked at him in a while. There was always so much anger and confusion between the two of them, and when they were talking they were yelling and when they were making love it wasn't sensual and genuine it was rough and meaningless. Everything was callous and angry and it skewed her vision of the compassionate man that stood before her.

His mind struggled to form any type of reasonable thought, and as he spoke his words mixed together allowing Brooke to decode his question mostly by the heart broken expression he wore. "Why did you leave?"

She turned her back, busying herself with pulling the coffee mugs from the cabinets. "You mean why am I leaving." The sharpness of her tongue was not a product of annoyance or anger, it was her way of holding it together. She heard his feet shuffle across the floor moving towards her. Her eyes closed trying to summon the strength to walk away from him, trying to picture the pain he had put her through and why exactly she could not be with him.

His hands wrapped around her waist and pulled her smaller body roughly against his chest. He could feel her rapid heartbeat and the tense muscles of her abdomen that would not relax against his touch. "Please Brooke."

She spun around in his arms, facing him, putting her arms on his upper chest, in what she had wanted to be a sign of defiance. He hesitated before his hands began to rub her back, almost instantaneously he felt her submit. Her arms curled inward and her head rested against his body.

"It's too hard Luke, we can't do this anymore."

His lips pursed against her forehead, savoring the feeling of her body curled into his. It seemed so perfect, and that was perhaps the reason he couldn't understand why the aching in his chest didn't cease.

Without meaning to he whispered, "I know."

His crestfallen look met hers and she sighed deeply into him. They had been meant for one another, but maybe that past tense meant something, something that neither of them had realized.