I was in such a writing groove. Then I got a review that kind of threw me off. I'm not sure of my writing anymore. This is an attempt to get me back into the groove.

Just something that takes place after 6x09. I was not happy with the way Peyton handled the Julian situation. For all of those who know me, you know Peyton is my all time favorite character, but the way she handled things with Lucas upset me greatly. I also do not like Julian/Peyton, and it's kind of sad to see all the LP fans jumping ship. Also this almost wasn't going to be M-rated, but you can all thank Mandi for changing my mind, haha.

I know there are a bunch of 609 fics probably circulating, but I started this Monday night - I couldn't not do this.

And as I start to let it burn my head, you slowly creep into bed
And I'm done talking
You say you know how i'm feeling, I just need to try to settle down

She feels as if the room is enclosing on her. Four walls rapidly moving to the center of the room, the ceiling coming down to crush her; suffocate the breath out of her body. After letting slip that her and Julian had been in love - which admittedly maybe wasn't the best way to approach the situation - no other words were spoken; he's been staring at her in that squinting, brooding fashion for twelve minutes now. Twelve whole minutes with no words spoken, no sudden movements, and no sign from him other than that first forlorn sigh.

As the thirteenth minute passes, she shifts to tuck her legs beneath her, nervously cracking her knuckles. For three weeks now, she spent hours every day trying to come up with the perfect way to tell her fiancée of her and Julian's past. It's not that she was trying to lie to him, or keep secrets - she just wants what is best for him. Turning that book into a movie could open up so many doors, it's an amazing opportunity, and she doesn't want to take that away from him. He'd worked so hard on that book, and the second - after The Comet had been met with limited success, her heart had broken for him. His face lit up when he relayed the news of the movie deal. Even though he was apprehensive after, she knew this would make him happy in the long run, and she knew this was the key to success. If anyone deserves this, it's Lucas Scott.

And so, even though Julian had seemed less than honorable with her, he had seemed quite the gentlemen and extremely genuine with Lucas - letting it go for the night had seemed the right thing to do. The next morning Lucas had gone on about how he needed this, and how it would be good for him - he was almost happy and carefree, that hadn't presented the best time either - and before she knew it, three weeks had flown by, with Lucas fully concentrated on the screenplay, and she still hadn't told him.

Maybe she was afraid. Maybe she was avoiding it. Maybe she didn't want Lucas to be angry. Whatever it was she just didn't know how to tell the love of her life that his producer was a man she had had a life with once.

"Why?" His voice breaks through her reverie.

She has to swallow thickly before even attempting words. "I didn't tell you because this is your chance Lucas. This is a huge opportunity for you. I don't want you to throw this all away…"

"Well it's a little too late now, isn't it Peyton?" His voice comes off as snide, bordering on cruel, and she has to clench her fists to contain herself.

"Lucas, I am sorry. I should have told you. There is no excuse I can give to you that is good enough for what I've done."

Slipping her hand into his he grips it almost unconsciously. Upon realizing this, he loosens his hold, but doesn't pull away, giving her hope. Plopping down next to her on the couch, he heaves a large sigh.

"Why didn't you ever tell me? That there had been anyone? Peyton, we've talked so many times about… everything, and you never once brought up the fact you'd been in a serious relationship in California."

His voice isn't angry or accusing - it's just sad. Almost lost, she thinks.

"Lucas, I didn't tell you because it's in the past. Because we're moving forward and I don't want us to be stuck there, in the past - where things were so painful and mixed up, and we weren't… us. Do you know what I mean?"

He wanted to open his mouth and say 'yes' and take her into his arms, apologize for giving her a hard time. Instead, he said "No. You know everything about my past, Peyt… now I feel like I don't even know who you are."

Her mouth drops open, and for a moment he thinks he spots her lower lip trembling. Her hand is most definitely shaking within the confines of his own. "Lucas," is all she can manage to whisper; her tone disbelieving and hurt.

"Peyton, we wasted so much time apart; so much miscommunication and mistakes and stubbornness. And now… now that we finally have our shit together, and we're getting married - married, Peyton - I have this to deal with?"

Her eyes narrow and her breaths start coming in short, uneven intervals. "Well, excuse me for being an inconvenience, Lucas."

Rolling his eyes, he jumps from the couch to pace in front of her. "That's not what I said, stop twisting my words, Peyton. I just meant… of course everything was going really well, and now this bomb is dropped."

She nods, pursing her lips - taking a moment to collect her thoughts. "You said earlier that I know everything about your past. And you're right - I do. It's because I was there, Lucas. I was there when you kissed me and proposed to another woman. I was there when you vowed forever to that woman. I was there when you said you hated me, and tried getting that woman back."

He isn't surprised this is where the conversation had led them. In all truth, this is what he deserves, but it all stings just the same. He had done all those things; he'd loved her all along, but he'd still made those mistakes with another woman. Mistakes that had emotionally killed this woman standing in front of him. This woman he loved to the depth of his soul, and wanted to spend the rest of his life with. He could never figure out why they consistently have to make things so hard.

"So yeah - I do know, Lucas. And you know - excuse me if I wanted to spare you that pain. Because I would never want to put you through what I endured. I would never do that to someone I…"

Her voice trails off, his brow raises. "Go on, Peyton. You've already come this far, why stop now?"

She never meant to imply he didn't love her; she knows that he did - that he does. "Let's start over. I wasn't implying…"

"No, I think you were Peyton - implying that I didn't love you."

The tension in the room has reached an all time high. Peyton stands near the entrance to their home, while Lucas is planted at the opposite end - the distance tearing at both their hearts. But now the painful words are out - and they can't just be taken back.

He's fuming. She's about to fall apart.

And neither are backing down.

How did it come this far?

"Well you would never have guessed that you did, Luke. Not by the way you treated me."

Turning his back to her, he bows his head, willing the burning sensation in the back of his throat to disappear.

"And you wouldn't know now that you do - not by the way you've neglected to tell me who you've screwed."

That was the last straw for her. She contemplated an array of actions: marching over and slapping him, leaving without a word, screaming, or breaking down crying and begging him to hold her.

"You know what Lucas? I don't think I can look at you right now. You have never talked to me like this, and I think we need to take a breather."

His heart clenches within his chest, thanking God she isn't doing worse and breaking up with him. At this point he almost deserves it.

But then he thinks of her omission and his blood boils all over again.

He's not the one to blame in this situation.

Oh a million faces pass my way
Oh they're all the same, nothing seem to change anytime I look around
Oh who knows just what the future holds
All I want to know is if it's with you

"I mean, can you believe the way he talked to me?"

As Brooke watches her best friend rant, with full on arms moving, face flushed, she can't help but frown. This wasn't supposed to happen. The ex boyfriend wasn't supposed to come back into town and throw their relationship off course. They were supposed to have the fairy tale life: married, kids, the whole package, and now here they were.

Peyton throws her head back, drowning the remaining beer in her bottle.

"P. Sawyer, come sit down. Take a deep breath, and come sit with me."

After Peyton has situated herself so that her head is on Brooke's shoulder, legs across her lap, and Brooke's hand running through her hair, Brooke speaks softly: "You know I'm your biggest supporter and I love you no matter what. But you are wrong, honey. I told you, you had to tell him, and you didn't. You know Lucas better than anyone… you had to have known this is how he would react."

The curly blonde draws back in shock, her mouth dropping. "Brooke!"

Brooke holds up a hand and shakes her head. "Don't "Brooke" me." They both stop to think about that sentence and laugh slightly, despite the tension. "Peyton, you know I'm right. You were in the wrong, sweetie. It's okay, we all make mistakes. Just… apologize."

Peyton curls into herself on the couch, knowing her best friend is right.

She feels another bottle being pushed into her hands. "You have to apologize - but for tonight, just drink with your best friend, and let's drown in our sorrows."

So Peyton drinks, and Brooke tells her about Owen, and she tries to forget that her relationship is hanging by a thread.

Tired as hell and falling up the stairs, filled with a thousand cares as you walk out from the bedroom
Though it feels like all my fire has gone, you just turn me on
Can't believe how much I want you
You say you know how i'm feeling, I just need to try to settle down

Peyton returns to their house the next evening after a long day of work. Her talk with Brooke the previous night had given her some perspective and light on the given situation. She was the wrong one; she'd lied to her fiancée - withheld pretty important information. True, he'd spoken words to her that were less than pleasant; but she had started this - she needs to be the one to end it.

She'd slept only a total of forty eight minutes the night before, agonizing over their fight, missing the feel of his deep breathing against her neck, the way he held her firmly against his chest until he fell asleep.

She misses him when they're apart but she figures at this point she might deserve that.

But she's here to apologize.

He's sitting at their kitchen table, head in hands. He knows she is in the room; he can feel her presence any time she's near. Their connection is strong and he's always been able to seek her out without even trying.

Right now, he wishes he couldn't.

He doesn't want to be that guy; the jealous fiancée who can't handle the thought of his girl with another man. But he is. And not just because she'd lied, but because the though of Julian's hands on her made his jaw clench, his blood boil.

He wants to be above it all, but the fact is - he's not.

Telling her this would be explosive, thinking it is almost killing him - because he's done worse with Lindsey. He tried to marry that woman to prove that he was over Peyton.

Obviously, he wasn't. He'll never be. He is going to spend the rest of his life with her.

If they can get past this.

Right now, he's not sure he can.

And that's his fault. Not hers.


He doesn't bother to look up. It feels as if he's cemented in place.

"Lucas, please look at me." She pleads, hands coming to his elbows, trying to gently face him to her.

"I don't want to work with him," he admits.

Her breath sucks in quickly. She'd known this was coming, but it almost shocked her. "Don't. Lucas, please don't ruin this chance because my stupid history came back to bite me in the ass."

"Bite you in the ass?" He exclaims, pushing back from the table. "I'd say this has sufficiently bitten us both in the ass. I was going to make a movie with this guy, and we're going to get married, and now nothing seems okay."

She allows the tears that prick her eyes to fall, uncaring of him seeing her in this state.

"So just because I had a relationship with this guy, you refuse to work with him? Just like that?"

"This guy is someone you were in love with, Peyton. He's working as a producer on a movie that's based on a book about our love. I'm sorry, but I can't handle that - what if, what if he's here for you?"

Her head turns, shaking vehemently. "He's not here for me, Lucas. We broke up because no matter what I did - no matter how much I loved hid him, or the moments of happiness I had with him, I was still holding on to you and us. Every time I saw your book, I had to pick it up - you know that, Luke. He was… he was great, and good for me at the time, and I did love him, I know you don't want to hear that, but it's important that you do, because you have to know - that he was never you. He could've never replaced you in my heart. No one could ever be you. So even if, by some insane chance he was here for me - it wouldn't matter. Do you think I could ever leave you, Luke?"

He opens his mouth to snap at her, but he doesn't have the energy. "I just can't do it Peyton. You can't ask me to be okay with this after three weeks of lying to me. You can't."

His voice is so fragile it breaks her heart.

They've shifted the blame multiple times within the past twenty-four hours and it tears at his heart.

"Weren't you going to stay with Brooke?"

At his questioning, she can't stop the sob that rises in her throat.

He hears her rummaging around their bedroom, most likely grabbing clothes so she can stay with her best friend. He feels like utter shit.

He's made more mistakes with Lindsey than this, but having Peyton lie to him when they were starting fresh was too much for him to comprehend.

She comes back through the kitchen with only a small bag packed; sighing, he knows she doesn't plan to stay gone long - but he knows he can't have her here right now.

Almost completely out the door, she pauses to speak. "I'm sorry Lucas. I know what I did was… not the right thing. We've both," she emphasized, "hurt each other these past few years. But I love you. And that… that's not ever going to change."

The door slams, and his head goes back to drop to his hands.

Oh a million faces pass my way
Oh they're all the same, nothing seem to change anytime I look around
Oh who knows just what the future holds
All I want to know is if it's with you

He doesn't know what he's doing here - he shouldn't be anywhere near Julian right now. But his anger and pain is overwhelming, and after four glasses of scotch, he has no willpower holding him back.

His fist knocks rapidly and continuously against the faded green paint of the hotel door.

"Hey Luke, how you doing?" Julian's voice is friendly, which pisses Lucas off even more.

Cocking his fist back without really thinking it through, he propels it forward, directly into Julian's nose.

"Okay," is all he manages.

And then he walks away.

Oh a million faces pass my way
Oh they're all the same, nothing seem to change anytime I look around
Oh who knows just what the future holds
All I want to know is if it's with you

"You punched him Lucas?" His best friend shouts, slapping the back of his neck. Not lightly.

"What the hell Haley? Yeah, I punched him, and frankly, I'd do it again."

Haley laughs with no edge of humor. "What are you fifteen? Solving your problems with violence? You know that's not the right thing, Lucas. You're a published novelist. Published novelists don't use their fists to solve a problem."

Sinking into the couch he nods. "I have to apologize, huh?"

She falls next to him. "Yep. You do - you can't not do this movie. I know that it's going to be weird working with him, but you have to do this Lucas. It's too amazing not to."

"I know, Hales - but they were in love. Haley, that's…" He doesn't even know what he wants to say - he doesn't know how to work out what he's feeling.

"Lucas, you cannot hold that against her, okay? That's the past. She loves you now. And she loved you even then. You had Lindsey. She was allowed to be in love."

Hearing those words aren't easy, but he gulps down his pride. "I know she was. And part of me is really glad that she wasn't alone in LA, and depressed the whole time. But I never imagined… this. I promise, it's not that she was in love. I was too, and I'd be a hypocrite to hold that against her. But how could she lie for three whole weeks?"

Haley understands. But it's all she's heard the past few days, her patience is wearing thin, so she lays it on the line. "Lucas. If you want to move forward, you have to let this go. He's here because he recognizes your book is amazing, and he wants to help you turn it into something even greater. His interaction with Peyton can be nonexistent. Why are you so worried?"

He looks directly into his best friend's eyes. "Because, you don't just fall out of love with Peyton Sawyer."

We're distracted by the hard times, and the troubles that we make
Let us throw them in the ocean, let it wash our cares away
Oh the phone you know it never stops, it's the last thing I hear at night
And the first thing in the morning

This time, on this day, Peyton walks through the door of their home with her jaw set in determination. She'd literally fucked up. She is determined to take full responsibility of her actions; this fight couldn't go on any longer. But he has to meet her halfway and take responsibility for his actions too. Internally, she admits that he has every right to be angry and hurt, but only for her harboring the truth - not for ever being with someone else. This never ending argument is officially become too much to handle.

This is either going to go one of two ways: they'll talk things out and make up… or they won't.

The second option is inconceivable to her.

Not bothering to be silent, she slams the front door, throwing her bag down on the couch, beginning the short trek to their bedroom. The soft clacking of fingers against keys causes a smile to sprout on her lips, but then she bites the bottom, worrying it between her teeth.

He hears his fiancée open the door, and a sweeping sense of relief washes over him. Not sure when she'd be back, he'd taken to writing and brooding, his two best defenses.

Peyton doesn't even realize he's staring at her until she closes the door, and turns back around to face him. When she finally does, his eyes catch hers - she sees a million conflicting emotions running through those soft pools: love, remorse, regret - I'm sorry.

And there it is. That's all she needs.

It occurs to her that their relationship has never been based on words and long speeches and arguments. He's Lucas and she's Peyton - that kick-ass epic love story - they've never had to talk to understand each other. From that first lock of the eyes, everything they'd ever needed or felt had been said through the eyes, or a simple touch. She isn't the girl who needs extravagant speeches, because he loves her and that's all she's ever needed or wanted.

However, the past two weeks have been nothing but one continuous stream of arguing and bitter words, and this isn't how they function.

The old Peyton Sawyer never wanted to be the first to give in, so it's hard for her, but she initiates the smile, not taking it a moment for him to reciprocate, he offers her a hand.

Without hesitance she takes it, pushing against his chest so that he moves back with the chair. Her legs go to straddle either side of his, arms wrap around his back, pulling his body close into hers. His hands immediately go the back of her neck, one cupping it, the other tangling in her hair, almost crushing them together. He hasn't felt her body in one week and three days. He just wants her close, needs to breathe in her familiar scent, and feel those soft curves aligning perfectly against his body.

His lips are against the hollow of her throat, head resting against her shoulder. Tears prick her eyes with the relief of being with him again.

No fight is worth this. Losing this comfort and love.

She vows never to withhold a secret from Lucas Scott again.

That had been stupid.

What had she been thinking?

Her thoughts break when she feels his lips pressing harder into the skin of her neck. His tongue peeks out, and drags across the hollow, causing her to grip the short blonde hair, a soft sigh working it's way from her lips.

She hadn't meant for this to be sexual - but she's never been one to turn away Lucas Scott.

Especially not after one week and three days.

Her hands glide down his back, pulling their bodies even tighter together. His lips are still working her throat, and she feels powerless in his arms.

Suddenly, he's being pushed back, and her lips are roughly smashing down to his. With silence, they've recognized their reconciliation and their apologies, but there's still a hint of tension and anger - and nothing fuels lust like anger. His tongue pries her lips apart, slipping in to taste the sweetness of her mouth.

They kiss without abandon, hands running wildly through hair, over her hips, across his chest. He pushes her down against his lap, and she feels him hard against her - the kiss breaks, she can't take it - a moan cannot be held back any longer.

He pulls the tank top from her body almost savagely, his mind only on seeing her creamy skin. She wastes no time in removing the bra from her body, not even waiting for him to make the first move, she takes his hands and places them on her breasts, throwing her head back at the feel of his fingers working her.

Seeing her looking so wantonly sexy is too much for him. He lurches out of the chair, forcing her to securely lock her legs around him. The closest surface is the wall - not caring a lick, he slams them into it. Her delicate hand gravitates down to the zipper of his jeans; after he's unzipped and unbuttoned, she's pushing them down to work her hand inside.

His grunt in her ear, let's her know the way she's moving her hand up and down is perfect. For a moment he forgets where he is; her hand is working a pattern against his erection in a way that he's forgotten is so fucking good.

Pushing her hands out of the way, he kisses her again, fiercely - she bites his lip, sucking it into her mouth. Grunts and groans fill the room; heat gathering between their bodies.

He goes to undress, but her legs clench around him, letting him know she's not moving. Her legs do slightly move down to push his jeans far enough down. He uses his hands to push them the rest of the way down. The buttons of his shirt are torn apart by her tiny, but forceful hands - there's no time for taking clothes off, no time for foreplay - she wants to feel him inside of her. She wants to lose herself in the movements of their body as one.

Looking for the panties that aren't there, his mouth runs dry and he tries to stop his eyes from rolling back into his head. She shrugs; she'd only grabbed enough for nine days. Today was the tenth day of being away from home, and honestly - she was hoping this might happen.

With one last look into her eyes, he pushes her skirt up to her waist, pulls her hips down - and sinks home into her body. They both whimper at the sudden pleasure.

One of his hands is steady against the wall behind her, while the other is tangled in her hair. Her left hand is scratching against his back, the other palm is flattened back on the wall, trying to gain some leverage, other than the squeezing of her legs.

When her warmth tightens around him, he knows it's a matter of moments until it's over. It's just started, but they're both worked up from the days apart - and with each other, it's always only a matter of mere moments until arousal has hit it's height.

But it can't end just yet. His lips touch hers almost chastely, and begin a route downwards.

A nip at her throat. A suckle at her shoulder. A bite at her ear. Kisses across her collarbone. Finally, his lips enclose over her breast, working the hardened bud between his teeth, softly - she works really hard to hold in a scream, but is unsuccessful. Gliding across the outside of her thigh, he traces then the inside before moving up and running his thumb - once, twice, a third time over that spot and then she's flying, whispering his name into his ear, the first word of the night - they both realize.

Feeling her come spurs his own sweet release, his head falls down to her neck, murmuring her name over and over again. They both collapse into each other, breathing heavy and dropping kisses onto sweaty skin.

Moments pass before he tiredly carries them to their bed, laying her softly down, then moving to join her - scooping her into his side, nuzzling her nose with his.

He undresses her the rest of the way, delicately. Brushing kisses against smooth skin as he removes the garments. He undresses himself as well, laying back down once more.

"I'm sorry," she whispers.

"Don't be. It doesn't matter anymore."

It still does, she recognizes. But now, they'll work through it together instead of apart.

We're distracted by the hard times, and the troubles that we make
Let us throw them in the ocean, let it wash our cares away
Oh the phone you know it never stops, it's the last thing I hear at night
And the first thing in the morning

Let it wash our cares away, let it wash our cares away...

Let me know what you think!