I know I probably shouldn't be starting a new fic, when I have another one going that takes up enough time as it is, and still has many chapters to go. But honestly… I couldn't resist. I have about 6-7 Leyton fic ideas, and this one was calling to me, I guess.

Disclaimer: One Tree Hill and all of it's characters belong to Mark Schwahn, and Tollins/Robbins. I own nothing. Zero. Zip. Zilch. Nada.

Plus, the song title for my fic is by The Early November. And the song title for this chapter belongs to Copeland.

This takes place about 4 ½ years after 4.08. Lucas never did tell Peyton he loved her back. This is definitely AU, and a few things that happened in the real S4 have not happened for the sake of my story. Now, College has ended and everyone's coming home to Tree Hill. I will be using a lot of details and scenarios from S5, but also things will be a lot different – you'll see in time. )

maybe i fell too fast

maybe i pushed you away

now you're gone and i'm afraid

that you're never coming back this way again

Lucas Scott had made many mistakes in the past regarding Peyton Sawyer, and love in general. On a relatively quiet night back in their senior year of high school, Peyton had admitted to him that she was in love with him. Lucas was shocked to say the least. On some level, he knew this had been coming – he'd been waiting for it, if he wanted to be honest with himself. Lucas always knew that one day they would finally get their shot to be together, but after so many failed attempts, and a broken heart, he'd given up – and pushed those thoughts to the very bottom of his heart. After he had left her house, with a simple "Oh," thrown at her in response, he spent all night awake, alternating thoughts between Peyton and the State Championship.

Even after all Skills had said to him the next day about him and Peyton never being just friends, he was just too afraid to risk it. Peyton Sawyer was the first girl to ever break his heart, and in all reality, he had never healed when they had ended their brief, but passionate, relationship. He didn't know what he'd do if history were to repeat itself, and somehow they broke up. Lucas didn't think his heart could handle another disappointment where Peyton was concerned.

After the State Championship and the Lucas and Haley in the hospital fiasco, Luke and Peyton had avoided the topic altogether, and went back to being best friends. Though, there were many awkward moments, and sometimes things were too tense, and they'd fight for no reason at all. Lucas couldn't deny that sometimes she'd do or say certain things that would make him want to kiss her and hold her and never let go. He fought against every urge inside of him, and tried so desperately to just see her as one of his best friends again. He had never been able to fit her into that role again. Once the confession was out there, it couldn't be taken back – and his heart would never forget.

It was tough, just playing the role of her best friend, but he could never give in to what he really wanted, he was too stubborn and scared out of his mind. They had even attended Prom together. He remembered that night like it was yesterday, her body pressed against his, hips moving together slowly while swaying to the music. After that night, they had kept their distance until graduation, and the after party. Before she left for LA, they had shared one very special night together. Lucas tried desperately not to think of the one night they had together, but every night, before he fell asleep his mind was bombarded with images of Peyton Sawyer and the way she looked that night.

After graduation, Peyton had left for California, at first she had intended to just go there for an internship, but before she left, she decided to just stay there for college, seeing as she had gotten into a very good school out there. Lucas was crushed, but he knew that she was destined for greatness, and he couldn't be mad at her for chasing her dreams. Lucas had stayed in North Carolina to help his mom with Lily, be assistant coach to Whitey at the small town college, be the greatest uncle he could to Jamie, and finish up his first novel. All of the angst and longing that Lucas had gone through during those last few months of high school had provided more than enough material for a best selling novel.

Surprisingly, not all contact with Peyton had been cut off after high school. When Peyton had first moved out there, they had spoken at least 3 times a week on the phone. It was comforting to hear each other's voices over the distance that separated them. Though, once school started for both of them, and Peyton also had her internship, was Lucas was busy being an assistant coach, they slowly lost that contact until they were lucky if it was an e-mail received once a month. 2 ½ years after Peyton had moved out to L.A, Lucas's first book, An Unkindness of Ravens, had hit it big and he was lucky enough to be able to go on a book tour. Being a huge American city, obviously the book tour had brought him to L.A, where he and Peyton had actually met up for one night – one night that had changed things between them once again.

Since that night 2 years ago, Lucas and Peyton had had no contact whatsoever. He couldn't deny that he missed her terribly, and just wanted to see her again. When he had returned to Tree Hill, Lucas had vowed to himself that if they ever got another chance – which seemed impossible at this point – that he would do everything in his power to show her how much he truly loved her, and that they were really meant to be. Lucas just prayed that they would get another shot at love, though after all the chances they've had so far, it didn't seem likely another opportunity would come up. He knew how much Peyton loved LA and the music industry, and he loved his life here in Tree Hill.

Lucas resigned himself to the fact that maybe what they had was history – destined to remain in the past forever. After how they'd treated each other, it seemed like maybe they were just the heroes of bad timing; never fully able to get what they really wanted: each other. She had a life in California; he had his in Tree Hill. They were an entire country apart, and he was sure that he may never see her again. Only a little part of his heart held on to hope where they were concerned; but as each day passed, he lost that hope little by little.

However, just when you were down and out, life always has a way of throwing you curveballs. Little did Lucas Scott know, he would be having a run in with one Peyton Sawyer sooner than he ever expected.

i'll see you soon
if you'll come back here
i'll see you soon
just say that you want to see me too

Okay, I know… slow start! The next one might be a little slow too, but I just want to show where Lucas and Peyton are at, and after the next chapter, I promise things will pick up quickly and take of running. This whole fic may be a little angsty, but as always, there will be a lot of Leyton loving. ) Let me know what you think!