AN: Well, you can thank Lori (my shining star!) & Sam for giving me the itch to post this. Then you can thank Erin (sweet Jesus what would I do with you???) & Jess D. for not killing me when I made them read it over and over to see if it made sense. By the way? I still think they were BSing me. I still think its too light and fluffy.
So okay, yes this was written in response to the SAVE BRUCAS challenge (thanks Miranda for asking me to participate). I hope I did it justice. The idea I had was something I could possibly see happening four years in the future, and so I wrote this fic in hopes that it gives Mark some ideas. I'm not holding my breath though. But I do hope you all like it. Carry on, thanks!
p.s. Yes I know you want the new Broody & The Bitch and Sisterhood of the Clothes Over Bros updates, they're coming. I promise.
Love Led Me On…
Flight 196 from New York, New York to Charleston, South Carolina now exiting gate 113…"
Crap. He was late. He was very late. But he was hopeful enough that she was too distracted by the crowds of people to care much. Brooke and crowds did not mix. She hated them and though he felt guilty for using it as a distraction for his late arrival, he thanked it. The years had done wonders for their friendship, making it something that not even Brooke or Lucas could have ever expected.
Brooke had gone away to New York for her Victoria Secret fashion line. Of course with a huge change in scenery, Brooke thought it wise to break things off with Chase. It was for the best, she believed, and the two had parted on good terms. For the first year after high school Brooke had been knee deep in the spotlight. Young, beautiful and talented, she dominated the fashion scene.
Being on the cover of every women's magazine and hitting all the hotspots in New York & Los Angeles, Brooke had become a fashion icon. Everywhere she went she was followed by cameras and people asking what she was wearing, what she had in mind for her next design… who she was dating.
There wasn't an invite she didn't receive, not a chair without her name on it, not a single photo opportunity lost. It wasn't until a year and half into the spotlight that Brooke realized one thing. That despite all the money and the fame she still felt as if something in her life was missing. Her heart missed Tree Hill.
So just like that, she packed it up and headed home. Clothes Over Bros thrived just as well from Tree Hill, granted she did the occasional routine check up in New York as a consult for her fashion line. She came home to find that Haley and Lucas were busy with college at NC University, and Nathan was forced to run his father's car dealership after losing his scholarship to Duke. But this did not matter to Brooke in the least. She spent almost everyday with her godson, James Scott. That is, when she wasn't running around Karen's Café chasing a giggling Lily Scott.
It was also around this time that Lucas began to get serious about publishing his book. So much in fact that he was focused on nothing else, needing his mother, Haley, or Brooke to remind him to eat and sleep.
Which also led him to forgetting that he, in fact, had a girlfriend named Peyton Sawyer. It seemed that the longer Peyton stayed away in California (after her internship turned permanent), the more he realized how much he didn't miss her the way he thought he would. She bounced around from city to city, always on the road with some band on some tour.
For almost a year Lucas held onto what little was left of his and Peyton's relationship. Fear gripping him every time he felt her pull away from his touch. His only means of communication with her were the short and brief voicemails she'd leave on his cell at three or four in the morning.
Until finally, there was no communication at all. And so, one year and three months after they had gotten together, Peyton Sawyer gave Lucas Scott the inevitable, "We're going in different directions…" speech. It was expected by most, that Lucas would fall apart at this change in his life. He'd once called Peyton his inspiration, looking back now he had no clue what possessed him to say such a thing.
Yet by the time the break up occurred Lucas was too busy handling all the pressure from his newly hired literary agent. Jonathan Foster knew talent when he saw it, and from the moment he held An Unkindness of Ravens in his hands, he knew he had struck gold.
Lucas Scott's debut novel had been an instant success. He had even been offered a movie deal, one in which he politely declined. He did not want his story to be altered in any way. Lucas soon found himself living in a loft in New York and sitting in bookstores with lines out the door; hundreds of people waiting for his autograph. Yet with success came a tremendous amount of pressure that Lucas wasn't prepared for.
He dealt with it with ease at first, politely declining any and all questions having to do with release dates. But his agents wanted more, demanded it even. The stress to write a new novel after just one year was overwhelming. Lucas then realized he had a huge case of writers block and a deep pang in his heart for Tree Hill. The place that was his inspiration.
Lucas moved back to Tree Hill soon after with the idea that he would regroup and get cracking on another novel... find more inspiration. He returned to Tree Hill to see Brooke firmly rooted in place. She had regularly scheduled visits with his mother and his sister Lily. She babysat James when Haley was in school and Nathan was busy managing Scott Motors.
He was weary of her presence at first, feeling somewhat threatened by the way she had undoubtedly taken his place while he was away. He busied himself with his work, trying hard to come up with a new plot for his next book. But then she'd walk in with a smile and a cup of hot chocolate and a demanding need for attention. Her pout could stop hearts, her lips and cheeks so rosy he had to blink and look away or stare forever.
So it was of no surprise that his second novel didn't get written... or wasn't written nearly as fast as he had hoped. Brooke Davis could be very distracting.
"Lucas!" In midst of the heavy crowd, he couldn't quite see Brooke just yet. But he'd recognize that voice anywhere, and went in the direction of her hands beckoning him over. "Hey broody! Over here!" The breathtaking brunette shouted with a giant grin, her hands beckoning him over. "Luke!" she waved her arms high above her head.
Unable to hold back a smile in return, he pushed past the crowd on his way towards her, ignoring the looks he was receiving from curious onlookers. Is that… no, no it can't be bestseller Lucas Scott! Followed by a shrill, Oh my god! Is that Brooke Davis!?
"Hey pretty girl," he held a hand out for her carry on bag. "Sorry I'm late, it's just—"
"No need to explain, I'm way too damn happy to care about that." She waved an absent hand with a laugh.
"Well, okay then." He chuckled and guided her towards the luggage claim. "What has you… extra cheerful?"
Brooke playfully pushed him before answering, "I got an advanced copy of the new Harry Potter book."
"I thought that series ended back in like… 2007?" Lucas asked with a curiously raised brow.
"Well yeah but there's a spinoff duh," she shook her head at his lack of obvious knowledge, "anyways, James is going to love his god mommy Brooke!" she clapped her hands together excited all over again. "Oh but don't think I forgot about my little Lily flower. I brought her a custom designed dress by yours truly." She winked and linked her arm through Lucas'. "So, tell me. Did you meet anyone and get married while I was away?"
"Brooke, you were only gone a week. Who on earth could I find and fall in love with by then?" He rubbed his brow confused at her random banter, a trait he secretly loved about her. No conversation was ever boring with Brooke Davis.
She shrugged. "Oh sue me. I just finished a romance novel on the flight back." She giggled and bumped her hip into his side. "What's wrong with us, Luke? Why do we go on dates only to end up on the couch with each other watching TV and discussing how lame the date was?" She frowned, a calculated look crossing her face. "We need to like… join or something!"
"I don't know, I'm kinda happy just being able to hang out with you. No drama. Oh, by the way. Haley called me earlier to remind me that game night is still on tomorrow. She doesn't care if you need another day to rest or not. She's determined to break our winning streak."
"Like hell," Brooke snorted. "Luke, you know we make the best team ever. I mean, who the heck can beat us? Nathan and Haley are just bitter because we rule at Charades and can whoop ass in Trivial Pursuit."
Lucas laughed in agreement. "It scares me how competitive you two get. You remember the time we did boys vs. girls? You threw a bowl of popcorn at Nathan because he won the bonus round of You Seen It against you."
"He cheated! He blurted out the answer and it was my turn!" She shouted heatedly.
"Brooke, it was whoever can answer the question the fastest."
"No… it was… wait…" She paused to scratch her head.
"Uh huh." He chuckled and grabbed her bags from the circling luggage claim. "Lets go home, Tree Hill just isn't the same with out you pretty girl." He winked.
She grinned up at him and laughed. "Aw, how cute. You missed me!"
"I always miss you." He smiled sweetly and hefted her bag up higher on his shoulder.
"Brooke!" Haley exclaimed in a voice so loud it had both Scott brothers cringing and covering their ears.
"Tutor-mom!" Brooke shouted, just as deafening. The two girls collided and fell to the floor in giggles. Seconds later, their greeting was interrupted by an equally ecstatic James Scott. "And tutor-baby!" Brooke took her godson into her arms and tickled him senseless.
"I'm not a baby Bookie." Little James pouted, using his name for Brooke since he was first able to speak and unable to pronounce his R's correctly. The name stuck and Brooke could not have been happier.
"Oh dear me, I'm sorry Mr. Scott. Can you ever forgive me?" She gasped, her hand flying to her chest in wait of his approval. He happily forgave her with a sloppy kiss and with the help of Lucas, she stood up from the floor and took her godson back into her arms.
"So how's business, Davis?" Nathan asked, causing Brooke to blink at him a few times. "Sorry," he blushed, now looking sheepish, "it just comes out now. I swear this job is making me such a damn grownup." He snorted.
"Language!" Haley's eyes grew wide as her hands flew to her hips. "You know what to do." She jutted her chin to the jar on the middle of the counter in their house. Nathan begrudgingly withdrew a dollar from his wallet and placed it inside. "He is so going to pay James' college tuition with that jar someday. I swear it." Haley shook her head, chuckling.
"Alright, lets get movie night started people! I've baked a good dessert if I do say so myself. Apple pie with vanilla ice cream." Haley wiggled her eyebrows while rubbing her hands together in pure excitement.
"Oh!" Brooke hoped up and down excitedly, "My fa—"
"—vorite! We know!" Everyone else in the room finished with a laugh.
Brooke rolled her eyes and followed Haley into the kitchen. As Haley set about putting popcorn into the microwave, she could not help but ask the same question she always asked when the two of them were alone.
"So have you and Lucas decided to stop pretending you're not in love with each other yet?"
Brooke almost dropped the liter of soda in her hands. "Haley! Not this again!" She responded in a scolding tone. "There is nothing going on between me and Luke."
"Luke and—" Haley's mouth snapped shut upon viewing the look of death on Brooke's face.
"We are just friends. That's it, nothing more." Brooke set down the bottle in her hands. "Besides, I love where we are right now. We're friends, good friends." She emphasized searching through the freezer.
"What are you looking for?" Haley asked and walked up beside her friend.
"Ice trays." Brooke answered simply.
"We have an ice maker." Haley laughed.
"Yeah, but Lucas liked his ice cubed. Not crushed or in the shape of moons." She responded as if Haley should know this information.
"Tough!" Haley laughed. "You know you are the Ross and Rachel of our group, right? I'm just waiting for you to either get knocked up or for you two to profess your love for one another. Hey! Don't you have a trip to Paris coming up?" Haley wondered aloud.
"Haley James-Scott. You watch way too much television." Brooke shook her head. "So anyways," she moved to switch the subject as soon as possible, "I was talking to Rachel yesterday and… what? Don't give me that look Haley, she's my spokesmodel! The face of Clothes Over Bros!"
"No, you are the face of Clothes Over Bros. She's the face of just plain Hoes." Haley frowned.
"Tutor girl! I cannot believe my ears!" Brooke gasped. "You know what to do…" She crossed her arms and looked to the waiting jar in the middle of the counter.
Haley rolled her eyes and slipped a dollar into the pot. "Whatever, my point is that you guys are a couple." At the sight of Brooke's raised eyebrow, she added, "Okay, so without the kissing and the sex and stuff. But just think about it Brooke. How many times a day do you call Lucas or does he call you? Who do you tell first when something exciting happens?"
"You." Brooke stated.
Haley rolled her eyes. "Who pops into your head first?"
Brooke bit her lip. "You," she lied.
"Can we just go watch the movie please?" Brooke rolled her eyes and walked out of the kitchen with her and Lucas' drinks.
It had become almost ritualistic for Lucas to stay the night in Brooke's house. The two always found themselves talking to one another all through the night on her sofa until finally… slumber would overtake them. She'd wake up in the middle of the night with a kink in her neck and Lucas nestled comfortably in her lap. She'd watch him for a few seconds before gently shaking him awake and offering him her guestroom for the night. She'd always end up in her bed tossing and turning afterwards. Craving his warmth so badly she'd soon find herself tip toeing towards the back of the house to his room.
He knew her well. He'd always known her, from the way she kinked her brow when she was being sneaky, to the way her dimples deepened when she was sincere. He'd always be waiting for the light patter of her feet against the hardwood floors of her house before ever letting sleep settle in. She'd crawl in under the covers and curl up beside him, letting one sweet sigh escape past her lips. The next morning the bed would be nothing more than a bunch of tangled limbs with the blanket halfway to the floor. But one thing was for sure, Lucas could not sleep comfortably without Brooke, and visa versa.
"I'm glad you're here, Luke," Brooke would whisper before falling asleep every night.
To which he'd reply, "There's no where else I'd rather be, pretty girl."
So on the night Brooke returned home from her trip to New York, it was of no surprise that the two were snuggled in her guestroom. Sure one could say that she and Lucas did not share the "normal" boy/girl friendship, and that most of the time the two acted as a couple rather than platonic friends. But neither cared what other people thought, because they were content with the way things were.
They counted on each other, never failing to pick up the pieces and put them back together for each other. Over the years they dated other people, but the relationships were never serious. It was hard to date when your significant other can't understand why your best friend - of the opposite sex, no less - always comes before them.
"Go to sleep Brooke," Lucas mumbled, half asleep himself. "You can worry about whatever it is tomorrow." He turned over in bed to curl an arm around her waist, his breath coming out in small puffs across the back of her neck.
She sighed and tried to relax, putting aside her thoughts of her growing fall fashion line. Whether Rachel would remember to sign those renewal contracts for Victoria Secret or if she'd forget like the last time... She wondered why Peyton hadn't called her in almost a month and why Mouth refused to talk about work with her. She worried about Bevin and Skills, about Lily and James and Haley and Nathan and…
"Relax babe," he placed his cheek on her shoulder, "or you're gonna get wrinkles." She felt his smile against her skin.
"Ha ha." She snorted, "I'm just… I don't know." She closed her eyes and took a deep breath, trying to clear her thoughts. Eyes still closed, she wriggled trying to get more comfortable. "Tell me a story?" she whispered.
He chuckled against her back, the vibration humming along her spine like a wonderful massage. He exhaled softly before speaking, "Okay," he kissed her shoulder. "Once upon a time…"
"She's crazy!" Brooke shouted heatedly as she stared down at the text message on her phone. "Lucas! Come here and call Rachel and tell her she is nuts!"
Lucas walked into her living room from the kitchen with a knowing grin. "So I see she told you about this weekend."
Brooke's eyes narrowed. "You knew about this?"
"What?" He chuckled. "You can't get out of it, Brooke. It's a pact, something we made five years ago." He shrugged, wiping his hands on a towel. "Come on now, get it together before dinner. I made your favorite."
Brooke's attitude perked up. "What's that?"
"Lasagna," he answered simply.
She sighed wistfully. "You're too good to me Luke. How did I ever deserve such an awesome friend?" She asked aloud.
Suddenly there was a knock at the door, one that caught both Brooke and Lucas off guard. "You expecting anyone?" Lucas' brow arched curious.
"No," Brooke's eyes widened, "why? Did you invite anyone?"
"No." Lucas shook his head and moved for the door.
"Lucas! Wait, it could be a burglar or something!" Brooke cautioned and quickly scrambled towards the nearest drawer in her kitchen for a weapon. She brought forth to him a silver spoon and held it high above her head.
"What are you gonna do with that, silly? Spoon feed the potential robber?" He snickered into a hand, "Of all the… oh Brooke. You are adorable." He laughed again and slowly withdrew (or rather pried) the object from her fingers.
The knocking at the door grew insistent.
"Lucas!" Brooke all but jumped into his arms.
"Relax pretty girl, I highly doubt a burglar would knock at the door. Now a serial mass murder—maybe. But a plain old fashioned robber? I'm pretty sure he would wait until dark and then—"
"Oh you are so funny!" Brooke's eyes narrowed at him, "Just for that you are staying the night here for the rest of the week. I have no idea how I will get to sleep at night now that you've put these horrible ideas into my head. I am a very attractive girl you know. I'm young and I live alone and I'm vulnerable!" She huffed and crossed her arms, "Now go get the door." She pointed with a pout.
Lucas could not stop the smirk from touching his lips and spreading across his face like a wild fire. Brooke imagination never ceased to amaze him. But who was he to complain? A whole week without having to make up an excuse to stay the night? Score.
"About time you opened the damn door," Rachel Gattina barked out in the doorway the instant Lucas opened up. "A girl is liable to freeze her ass off out here." She frowned and shivered for emphasis.
"Fire-crotch!" Brooke shrieked as she rushed across the room to tackle her favorite supermodel.
"Fat ass!" Rachel replied equally as excited as her boss, her earlier complaint easily forgotten.
"You guys are weird." Lucas chuckled while shaking his head. "Well, you're just in time. I just got done with dinner." He ushered the two girls back inside and took Rachel's bags, hopeful to make his way back into her good graces.
"Well aren't you sweet," Rachel teased. "You didn't tell me Luke was such a great wife."
"Oh yes, he's regular Stepford materi—"
"Hey!" Lucas interjected. "Easy on my manhood here." He frowned humorously.
"Oh don't you worry Broody boy," Brooke smiled and wrapped her arms around his neck. "Trust me when I say that your manhood can never be jeopardized in any way, shape or form." She winked suggestively then spun around to link arms with Rachel.
Both girls giggled and migrated into the kitchen before a dazed Lucas Scott followed them into the room. "You two seem cozy," Rachel whispered into Brooke's ear.
"Don't start Rach," Brooke groaned. "I get enough of it from Haley."
"How is my bestest bff?" Rachel asked with a mischievous glint in her eye.
Brooke rolled her eyes and sat down at the table. "She's great. Which is more than I can say for you. I can't believe you and Lucas conspired behind my back!"
"Oh come on Davis, like I would miss the reunion to remember? I already called Mouth and Bevin. They're in. So is Skills, but that's a no brainer seeing as how he won't leave Bevin's side."
"Ah yes, baby Bills." Brooke smirked.
Rachel hid a smirk behind a hand. "She's due any minute but she refuses to miss this reunion." She shrugged and took a seat across from Brooke at the table, her eyes darting towards Lucas who was busy at the oven.
"What did you do?" Brooke's brow rose curiously. "Rachel…"
"Lets just say I have a plan in motion. If this doesn't work… I don't know what will other than a swift kick to the ass." She snorted.
"Rachel…" Brooke growled.
The red head shrugged her shoulders innocently and began a conversation with Lucas. One that lasted until all three had cleaned their plates. Brooke gave up trying to make sense of Rachel and opted for a shower before they all headed out for a movie.
It was when Rachel was alone with Lucas that she truly began to set her highly thought up scheme into motion. It didn't take a genius to see how Brooke and Lucas felt about each other. But Rachel knew Brooke, even better than Brooke knew herself. No way would she try again with Lucas. It wasn't about Peyton's feelings, because though the two were still friends they were not as tight as they were in high school. The reason was plain and simple; Brooke was tired of getting hurt. But her heart? Well that was in cupid's chokehold, and Rachel loved playing cupid…
Sometimes. When she was bored. Like now.
"So Luke," she idly hopped up onto the counter beside the sink where Lucas stood washing their dinner plates. The boy was a real Suzie homemaker.
"So Rachel." Lucas said back, sneaking a peek at her from the corner of his eyes. She was up to something, he just knew it.
"You excited to see Peyton again?" she quipped innocently. Phase one; verify feelings for the ex.
Lucas shrugged nonchalant, as if the thought had never even occurred to him. "I don't know, I mean yeah it's been a while but…" he shrugged again. "I'm more eager to see Mouth and Skills. I haven't seen them in almost a year," he said. "Hey, can you hand me that towel behind you?"
Hmmm. Rachel stared at Lucas curiously. "Sure." She reached behind her back for the dish rag. "So you're telling me you're not in the least bit interested in seeing Peyton. The woman you were supposedly destined to be with. Your soul mate." She clasped her hands together and held them to her chest dramatically. "The one you ditched my dear baby boo Brooke for back in the day, for which she had a torrid love affair with her English teacher over. She cried herself to sleeps for days after—"
"What are you getting at Rachel?" Lucas' brow rose, his expression becoming serious.
Rachel's face fell. "I really don't know…" She scratched behind her ear. "Alright, look," she shook her head, clearing her thoughts, "my point is, do you think seeing Peyton again will stir up any lingering feelings you may harbor deep down inside?"
"Rachel?" Lucas twisted the handles in the sink to shut off the water. "Why on earth are you asking me all this?"
"If you don't know," Rachel rolled her eyes, "you'll never find out."
"You make my head hurt." He pressed a hand to his forehead as if to prove his point.
"No, that's just your cooking." She smirked. "You know, for someone who has a heart condition to worry about? You sure do use a lot of seasoning."
"Why am I still even talking to you?" Lucas asked, shaking his head and walking out of the kitchen and back into the living room.
"Oh yeah, right." Rachel nodded and hopped off the counter to follow suit. "So here's the down low Mr. Scott." She sighed and flopped down beside him on the couch. "I know how you feel about Brooke. In fact, I think everyone knows how you feel except for Brooke herself. Which is why I'm betting you have no idea she feels the same way about you." She shrugged.
"I don't know wh—"
"What I'm talking about. Yeah, I figured." She groaned and rested her head back against the cushions. "This is gonna be harder than I thought," she mumbled to herself.
Phase two; distinguish feelings between Brooke and… anyone else.
"Okay so say you just found out you won a million dollars." Rachel scooted in closer to Lucas. "Who do you call first to share the news?" She rolled her eyes at the face Lucas gave her and punched his shoulder. "Just answer the question already!"
"Ow! Fine! Gosh," he grimaced. "I don't know… my mom?"
"Seriously?" Rachel's brow wrinkled confused. Lucas shrugged. "Ugh! You're killing me here, Lucas. Okay, next question."
"Why do I feel like I'm being interrogated?" Lucas chuckled nervously.
"Chill out," Rachel assured him, "just play along with me, okay? I swear everything will make sense once I get my point across." Lucas crossed his arms over his chest and waited for her next question.
"Okay," she smiled. "Who was your favorite character in your book?"
"Which one?" His brow rose. "The one I got published or the one I'm working on?"
"Oh my God!" Rachel pulled at her hair, frustrated. "The first one," she replied in a tight, controlled voice.
"Brooke's," he said, without any hesitation.
"Why?" Rachel asked.
Lucas clamed up. "I don't know… I just…"
"Luke, come on. It's me." Rachel touched his shoulder affectionately. "I know you love her."
"Excuse me?!" Lucas yelped.
"Lucas." Rachel deadpanned.
"We are just friends," he snapped.
"Luke…" She groaned, throwing an arm over her eyes in exasperation.
"Great friends. Best friends!" He shouted with wide eyes.
"Lucas!" Rachel slapped him upside the back of his head.
"I love her," Lucas admitted, sagging down into the couch. "Oh God… is it that obvious?" He groaned helplessly.
Rachel gave him a sympathetic look. "'fraid so my friend." She nodded and rubbed a gentle hand up and down his arm. "But you're in luck." She grinned.
"How is that?" Lucas peaked open one eye to look up at her skeptically.
"I'm here!" Rachel flung her arms out happily. "And don't worry. I've made it my soul mission in life to have you two together before I go back to New York." She winked and smiled. "Just trust me."
"That's what I'm afraid of," he moaned.
"Oh! Oh!" Brooke shouted out excitedly the next day during one of the infamous 'game nights' she shared with her best friends. "Umm… shoes… red? Oh! Red Shoe Diaries!" Brooke blurted out at Haley who was busy strutting around the living room in Brooke's red high heels.
Haley scoffed and shook her head. She gave the shoes back to Brooke then purposely took them back to slowly slip her feet back into them.
"Beakman's World!" Lucas yelped and received a smack from his brother. "What? I had to contribute something!"
"So you say Beakman's World?! Are you kidding me?" Nathan shook his head. "You could have said anything else actually related to shoes and you say—"
"Dude, chill out and put the popcorn down." Lucas slowly backed away from his brother, his eyes trained to the bowl in his Nathan's hands.
"You guys both suck!" Haley shouted out in frustration.
"Hey! Hey! No talking!" Lucas pointed out. "Maybe we should go back to our original teams?"
"I would take total offense to you wanting to ditch me right now except for the fact that you suck," Nathan snorted. "Hales come here baby, it's team Naley vs. Brucas." Nathan laughed and held his arms open for his wife.
"I gotta finish this last charade. Now shut up," she snapped at the two brothers before she turned to Brooke with her hands on her hips. She stomped her feet, clad in high heels, and glared at Brooke.
Brooke merely shrugged in confusion, as if to say "I don't get it."
"You're in my shoes, what about it?" she replied. Haley then jumped up and down excitedly pointing at Brooke, then the shoes. "My shoes?" Brooke's brow rose interested. Haley nodded and took her foot out before placing it back in. "In my shoes?" She muttered and Haley nodded her head vigorously, her hands rolling for Brooke to keep going. "In my shoes… in my shoes… in… in-In Her Shoes!" Brooke screamed.
"Yes!" Haley shrieked and tore across the room to jump at Brooke, the two crashing down to the sofa on top of Lucas.
"Air!" Lucas yelped from somewhere beneath the two petite girls.
"Shhh, you're gonna wake James." Nathan hissed, pulling his wife from the tangle of limbs.
"Hey! That's my partner! Give her back." Brooke scrambled to her feet and pulled Haley from Nathan's arms.
"Well she's my wife. I win!" Nathan tugged her back towards him.
"Uh, she's my best friend. Oh! In your face! I win!" She jerked Haley her way.
"Does anyone want to be my partner?" Lucas wondered aloud.
"I think, I'm gonna puke." Haley began to look a little green from all the jerking motions - being tugged back and forth was not fun.
"It's boys vs. girls night. Quit trying to switch it up just cuz you're losing." Brooke stuck her tongue out.
"Oh, very mature." Nathan scolded, before he proceeded to stick his own tongue out.
"Fine." Brooke let go of Haley's hand, sending the poor girl flying into her husband's arms. "Come on Luke, we're so gonna dominate this game night." She smirked.
"Oh, now she wants me." Lucas rolled his eyes from the couch.
"Don't be silly, I always want you Luke." She winked and licked her lips seductively biting the corner of her lip. Lucas felt his heart speed up. God she was beautiful. Damn Rachel for making him admit his true feelings. He was perfectly content with pretending he felt nothing but friendly love for Brooke Davis. Now he kept wanting to take her in his arms and just lose himself in all that was Brooke.
"Lucas?" Brooke snapped her fingers in his face. "Yo! Luke! You okay?"
"What?" He blinked several times and looked around to see three curious sets of eyes staring down at him.
"Maybe we should call it a night…" Brooke wearily took Lucas' hand in hers and looked over her shoulder at Haley. "Rain check?"
"Sure," Haley smiled knowingly. "But first come with me into the kitchen, I want you to take some of my pie home." She waited until Brooke was within reach before pulling the girl into the kitchen forcefully. "Okay, spill. What just happened out there?"
"What are you talking about?" Brooke scoffed.
"The Brooke Davis lip nibble? The sultry sway in your hips? The seductive come hither leer in your eyes?" Haley accused shamelessly.
Brooke's mouth fell open in shock. "Excuse me? That was harmless flirting. Luke and I do it all the time." She rolled her eyes.
"Okay," Haley nodded, "first of all? Congratulations on using the correct sentence structure there." She patted her friend's cheek proudly. "And second?" She walked over to the jar full of money and dug around in her pocket for some change. "Pardon my French but… you're full of shit." She dropped four quarters into the jar.
"Haley James-Scott!" Brooke gasped.
"Brooke, I know you're scared to admit your true feelings, but honey... we can see how you two feel about each other." She held Brooke's face gently between her hands. "When are you gonna accept what your heart is trying to tell you?"
"I stopped listening to my heart a long time ago, Haley. It hurts less that way," Brooke replied, a sad smile on her face. "I'm happy with the way things are, its safe like this."
Haley shook her head slowly. "Is it Brooke? How healthy can it be to hold back so much? You deserve to be happy!" She cried adamantly. "Lucas makes you happy. Brooke, think about it. You guys both have the same heart." She pressed her hand to Brooke's chest. "Listen to it," she whispered and pulled her friend in for a hug before walking back out into the living room.
Brooke stared at the counter where the long forgotten chocolate cream pie sat. She sighed wistfully and grabbed a fork before sitting at the counter to dig in.
She had some things to think about.