Another story! Horrah! This is set sometime in Season One, after the 'I love you' declarations. It focuses on Nathan and Haley, no other specific pairings because really, no one else will be in it. So if you want it to be Brucas, then it's Brucas. If you want Leyton, it's a Leyton! Yay! Everyone's happy! So let's just jump right in, shall we?
Disclaimer: Do you seriously think I'd be on fanfiction if I owned One Tree Hill? Psh, get real.
"Okay, don't freak out." Haley said sitting down at a lunch table outside on the quad. Nathan looked up from the notebook in front of him and frowned.
"Hales, you should know me well enough by now not to bother saying that; because as soon as you do, I start to worry."
"Sorry. Okay, so here's the deal: my parents want to hang out this weekend."
A smile crept across his face. "Well, I'm pretty busy. I mean, I know your parents like me but I was kind of hoping to spend some time with you."
She rolled her eyes. "Very funny. I meant with both of us. They said they wanted to get to know you more since you apparently take up all of my time."
"Well what can I say? I'm irresistible." He grinned as he leaned in and kissed her.
"Well as true as that may be, they still want to hang out. They said we could do three things: something they pick, something I pick, and something you pick." She said once they'd parted.
Nathan shrugged. "Okay, I'm there."
"Good! How's this Saturday?"
"Fine by me. Maybe after we can go out and catch a movie or something. Or we could always head back to my apartment…."
Haley laughed. "We'll see. Just think of what you want us to do; my parents are interested in finding out." She stood up, dropping another kiss on his forehead. "I have to go; I'm tutoring someone in ten minutes."
He nodded. "Okay, I'll meet you by your locker after last period?"
"I would hope so since I have no other ride."
"Good. No other boyfriends I have to worry about." He smiled. "See you then."
"And you get to pick something to do?" Lucas questioned later that night on the phone.
Nathan sighed and flopped down on the couch in his apartment. "Yeah, and I'm not sure what to do. I mean, if I pick basketball they might be bored but if I pick something else they might think I'm trying to impress them." After talking to Haley earlier that day, and realizing he had no clue what the hell he was going to do, he decided to call Lucas and ask for help since he figured Lucas would know the most about Haley's parents.
"Let me tell you something, man: Jimmy and Lydia are the two most laid back people on the planet. I don't think it really matters what you do. As long as they realize that you're good to Haley they won't care."
"How do you know that?"
Lucas laughed. "Because Haley has five brothers and sisters. And after everything they've done Haley is easily the most mature and responsible one, most of the time more so than Lydia and Jimmy. They're good people, Nate. You have nothing to worry about."
Nathan sighed. "Yeah, I guess so. Thanks dude."
"Anytime man. I'm glad they're doing this, now you can worry about it and I can kick your ass even more than usual at practice."
"Dream on. I can beat you with both arms tied behind my back." He said easily.
"Oh, I'd love to see that."
"Okay, so have you decided what you want to do tomorrow?" Haley asked walking up to Nathan's locker the next day.
He leaned down and kissed her quickly. "I think so."
"Good. Me too and don't worry about it, it'll be fine." She smiled. "Lucas and I are going to the bookstore today after school so I'll see you at my house tomorrow around noon, sound good?"
"Sounds good." He smiled at her before adding quickly, "Love you."
"Love you too." They both grinned as they went their separate ways. It was new for both of them, sure. Neither having been in a real serious relationship before, it was all new. But it worked, and after they had said it for the first time it had gradually become easier and more natural. Now it seemed almost out of the ordinary if it wasn't said at least once during the day, as if it were routine and not the least bit unexpected.
The school had immediately began to buzz once they had started dating: basketball jock Nathan Scott and bookworm Haley James, a couple? It was unheard of. It was completely opposite status quo and wrong on so many levels. But once their friends had accepted it, acting as if it was just another high school couple, everyone had moved on to the next gossip story and Nathan and Haley's relationship was soon forgotten. Now that everyone had gotten used to it, it was completely natural. They no longer laughed when they saw the two walking down the hall or made jokes behind their backs. There were no looks of disapproval as they passed notes during class or Haley sat with the basketball team at lunch. It was just… how things were.
Saturday came bright and early and, as promised, Nathan was standing on Haley's porch promptly at twelve o'clock. She grinned when she opened the door, greeting him with a kiss and ushering him into the kitchen where her parents sat drinking glasses of ice water.
"Nathan, it's nice to see you again." Jimmy said standing up and shaking his hand. "How've you been?"
"Hi Mr. and Mrs. James," Nathan said nervously. "I'm okay, how about you?"
"Well we're still old and senile, but other than that just fine." Lydia answered smiling. "And for the last time, call us Jimmy and Lydia. Mr. and Mrs. James are Jimmy's parents."
"And they're really old." Jimmy added.
Haley closed her eyes and tried to calm down, praying that her parents would just stop talking.
"So, should we go?" Lydia stood up and set her and her husband's glasses in the sink.
Everyone nodded and headed out to the car; Jimmy taking the driver's seat, Lydia the passenger's and Nathan and Haley together in the back.
"Relax." She whispered as they started moving. "This isn't a big deal."
He nodded and grabbed her hand, clearly not believing it.
"Haley Bob, what are you two talking about?" Lydia said from the front. "We may be old but we're not deaf."
"Just wondering where you're taking us, mom." Her daughter answered.
"Ah, well that's easy: We're doing karaoke!"
Haley's mouth dropped open. "What?"
Jimmy laughed. "Relax Bob, we're teasing. We're going to play miniature golf."
"Oh." Nathan smiled; they had picked something he was at least semi good at. Maybe this wouldn't be so bad after all.
"Yes!" Haley cheered as she made yet another hole in one. "I guess the golf course on Karen's roof wasn't such a bad idea."
"I guess not." Lydia agreed as she stepped up and aimed her putter. "So Nathan, we here you're living on your own."
"Um, yeah. My parents weren't exactly what you would call tender." He said uncomfortably. "They argued a lot and it got to be too much. Then after the incident on the court I just realized I couldn't deal with it anymore."
"What incident?" Jimmy asked as his wife marked her score down on the sheet.
"The one I told you about, dad." Haley spoke up quickly. "Remember? I came home from the game and said he had been rushed to the hospital after he collapsed."
"Oh, yes. We were sorry to hear about that. I take it you're better now?"
Nathan nodded. "Yes sir. I think I just lost focus on what was important in life. Haley helped me realize it though." He smiled at her, which caused Haley to go red.
"I didn't do anything." She said humbly. "You did it all yourself. I just cheered you on."
"No, you helped me Hales. You helped me see what I had been missing all along, and I'll always appreciate you for that." He said sincerely.
"Well it looks like we have a mentor on our hands, Jimmy." Lydia spoke up. "It appears Haley might just be the next Jesus."
"Seriously hon, we should take you up to the hospital. See if you can cure the sick."
"Dad, can you guys please just be serious for one minute please?"
Jimmy laughed. "Relax hon. You know we like to tease. In all seriousness, though, we're glad you're back on track Nathan."
"Okay, that's enough serious stuff. It's time to find out the winners!" Lydia said holding up the score card. "First place goes to Haley Bob, followed by Nathan, then me and the big loser: Jimmy!"
"There has to be some mistake, I'm always good at this game! Let me see that." Jimmy grabbed the card and began to examine it.
His wife sighed. "Jimmy, get over it, you lost. And don't make up some story about how you thought we were playing for the highest score, because you've used that excuse too many times already."
"Fine. Haley, your place to pick is next. Where to?"
"Sweetie, I have to admit I like the way you think." Lydia spoke up half an hour later. Haley has chosen to go to the local Sweet Shoppe downtown for ice cream.
"Well I'd love to say I picked it because it was a great way for us all to get to know each other, but really I just wanted a double scoop of Rocky Road." Haley admitted taking a bite out of her ice cream cone.
Her dad smiled, "Still a good idea."
Lydia made a face. "Jimmy, I cannot believe you got that new Pumpkin Mint flavor of the month thing. It looks disgusting."
"It does not."
"It's green and orange with little brown things in it!"
He scoffed. "The chocolate chips top it off!"
"You should've just gotten plain vanilla like me."
"Vanilla is boring!"
"Says the woman who wanted to get a lime green sofa last weekend."
"It went well with the carpet!"
"It came with a matching shag rug."
"Jimmy, you are not a woman. You wouldn't understand decorating if it came up and flashed you." Lydia said rolling her eyes.
"Okay, change of subject!" Haley said loudly. "Please!"
"Fine. Nathan, other than basketball, what do you like to do in your spare time?" Jimmy asked licking his multi-colored treat. "You like golf? Or fishing?"
"Um, I've played golf a couple of times." Nathan said licking his own ice cream, which was the same as Haley's. "But it was never what you would call fun. My dad took me out a couple of times and it always seemed to end with an argument."
"Well how about fishing? You ever been fishing?"
"No sir. My dad was never really the outdoors type."
Jimmy smiled kindly. "Nathan, I keep noticing that you mention your father a lot. And I want you to know that we don't care about him. We care about you and how well you take care of our daughter. So, tell us what you like to do."
Nathan shifted in his seat, and locked eyes with Haley who gave him a look that clearly said, 'Calm down and just be yourself'.
"Um, well I'm usually pretty busy with school and work and basketball, but when I do have free time I like to play video games or spend time with my friends or just shoot around. But my favorite thing to do is hang out with Haley."
Jimmy and Lydia nodded, sensing he had more to say.
"The truth is, Mr. and Mrs. James, is that I'm in love with your daughter." Nathan went on. "And I would never, ever do anything to purposely hurt or upset her or pressure her into doing anything she doesn't want to do. All I want to do is spend time with her, because
when I do I know she makes me a better person; the kind of person I want to be." He looked down at his ice cream, clearly not wanting to have to look them in the eyes for the next part. "My life was pretty screwed up. My mom was never home, my dad is a jerk, and I had a brother who I tried pretty hard to pretend didn't exist. But when I met Haley she helped me realize that there's more to life than basketball. To be perfectly honest, she makes me a better person and all I want is to be with her."
"Will you excuse us for just a minute?" Lydia asked standing up and dragging Jimmy to the other side of the shop.
"Did you mean what you just said?" Haley asked quietly after they'd gone.
Nathan nodded, "Every word."
She grabbed him by the face and pulled him close, kissing him soft but lovingly. "No one has ever said anything like that to me before. It means a lot coming from you."
"I love you Hales."
She smiled. "I love you too Nathan."
"Ahem." The two teenagers broke away immediately, noticing Jimmy and Lydia had rejoined them.
"Nathan, we've thought about what you said." Lydia told him sternly.
Jimmy nodded. "And we've decided that if you care about our baby enough to say something like that to us, you must be a decent guy."
Haley grinned. "I told you it would be okay." She whispered out of the side of her mouth.
"Thank you." Nathan said genuinely. "That means a lot to me."
"You'd better take care of her, though. We're not afraid to come and hunt you down." Lydia teased.
"You don't have to worry about that. I don't plan on doing anything to jeopardize my relationship with Haley."
"Alright then; Now that the serious talk is over, Nathan, where are you taking us to end the day?"
"I know that it seems like my life revolves around basketball." Nathan said as the four of them walked up to the River Court. "But I wanted to show you that it doesn't always have to be about a scoring average or how many people are cheering you on. That sometimes you just play because you love the game. And since I can't really explain it, I figured maybe I could show you." He grabbed a basketball lying under one of the nets at the end of the court. "How about a game of two on two?"
"Sounds good." Lydia said nodding. "But you have to team with Haley so it'll balance out."
"Hey!" Haley yelled, mildly offended.
"Sorry hon. But I think it's no secret to anyone here that you're just not cut out to play sports." Her father said sympathetically.
Nathan chuckled. "It's cool; I was planning on teaming with Haley anyway."
"Because I'm awful?"
"No, because I can hopefully help you score." He winked at her.
Half an hour later the game was getting heated, the score was 8 to 5 with Nathan and Haley leading. Nathan had decided they would play to ten, having each basket count as one point.
"Okay, I'm not going easy on you anymore Nate." Jimmy said as Nathan stole the ball yet again from him.
Nathan grinned and tossed the ball to Haley, lifting her up by the waist so she could toss the ball into the net with ease.
"Yes!" she cheered. "You know basketball isn't so hard when you play like this."
The group chuckled, "Okay, so this next basket means we win, right?"
Nathan nodded. "Yeah Hales."
He and Jimmy took their places at the center of the court and they resumed playing.
Fifteen minutes later they all sat on the bleachers, hot and winded, drinking Gatorade.
"You know Nathan this was fun and all, but next time I'm not going to let you win." Jimmy joked.
"I appreciate you going easy on me Mr. James." Nathan chuckled.
"Well, you seem new to the game. I wanted to give you a break."
Lydia rolled her eyes and stood up. "I think we're going to head back. This was fun, though. It was great getting to know you Nathan." She held out her arms and gave him a quick hug. "You take care of my baby."
"What am I, her dentist?" Jimmy asked joining them.
"Oh for heaven's sake. Our, take care of our baby."
Nathan laughed. "I will."
Jimmy shook Nathan's hand, turning and walking off with his wife.
"Oh, and Nathan?" He called turning around.
He and Lydia grinned. "The next time you come over in the middle of the night, try using the front door. The neighbors might start to think we're being robbed."
"Yes sir." Nathan said, his face going red.
"Honey, we trust you both." Lydia said warmly. "And we don't have a problem with it; just please stop climbing up our trellis. You're killing my geraniums."
"Yes Mrs. James."
She smiled. "Thank you dear."
"That was interesting." Haley said walking up and putting her arms around him.
"Definitely. But I'm glad we did this, your parents are nice Hales."
"Please, they're so embarrassing."
"Maybe to you, but I think they're cool." He leaned down and pecked her on the lips.
"You want to catch a movie?"
He shrugged. "We could, or we could go swimming at my parent's house since they're both out of town for the weekend."
"But your apartment complex has a pool." She pointed out.
"Yeah, but this way we could have it to ourselves. And then I can kiss you as much as I want and you won't freak out about PDA." He whispered kissing her neck.
Haley smiled. "Hm, good point. Do you still have my bathing suit at your apartment when I forgot it last week?"
"Okay then. Let's grab our suits and go swimming."
Nathan grinned and picked her up, causing Haley to yell out in protest.
"Nathan! Nathan, put me down! I can walk!"
"I know that, but I can walk faster."
"Will you just put me down?"
"No and don't bother giving me the sad face because it isn't going to work."
Haley frowned; she didn't have a backup plan. She was just about to give up when a light bulb went off in her head.
"Ow! What the hell?" Nathan stopped and set Haley on the ground. "Did you just pinch my ass?"
Haley grinned. "Yep; and look, you put me down!"
He shook his head, "Unfortunately for you that only turns me on."
"Then why did you put me down?"
"Because you kind of scared the shit out of me." He said matter-of-factly.
"Well I'm down now so it looks like you're out of luck."
"You seriously don't think I can catch you?"
Haley got up and began running, Nathan catching up to her with ease. He scooped her up and started to run towards his apartment.
"Nathan, put me down!" she pinched his butt again, causing him to jump a little and smack her bottom. "Hey!"
He laughed. "Hey what?"
"You just slapped my ass!"
"You pinched mine!"
She tried to think of a clever comeback but couldn't come up with anything better than, "So?"
"So, every time you pinch me, I'm going to spank you."
"Nathan!" she whined.
"Hales!" he moaned, matching her tone.
She let out a breath. "Fine. You win."
"I always do."
"You're lucky I love you."
He stopped suddenly and set her down. "I know I am. I love you too Hales."
"That was sweet, and you put me down again!" she cried racing off.
Nathan grinned and began to chase after her again. God he loved that girl.
Well, how'd you like it? How was it? All opinions are welcome! And don't forget to REVIEW!! They make me smile.