I still don't own it, nor do I own "Delicate" by Damien Rice.

So, I wasn't going to continue this, but your response was amazing! 9 Crimes was written a while ago, but I needed some time to really be able to get into the mood of this again. There may be a third part, but I don't know when it'll get posted.


We might kiss when we are alone
When nobody's watching
We might take it home
We might make out when nobody's there
It's not that we're scared
It's just that it's delicate

His fingers tangle in her short brown locks. He throws his head back and snaps his eyes shut. She's so damn good at this that it almost hurts. But it's the best kind of painful pleasure he's ever experienced.

Her head moves up and down slowly and her tongue traces his tip. Her soft hands caress his thighs and all of those movements are tantalizing. His breaths increase and he looks back down at her. She raises her eyes and blue meet brown.

He can feel his heart pound in his ears.

She continues to move her head and his hips jerk awkwardly; bumping into her. He pushes her away hastily and when she furrows her brows he simply picks her up and lays her atop the bench. He pulls down her shorts and nearly rips her panties from her body.

When he enters her, they both pause. It's only a second of hesitation and neither of them thinks about the reason why, but they'll both remember the eye contact they shared as he slipped into her warmth. Brooke moves her hips and Nathan begins a gentle pace. He moves with precision, knowing the perfect pace and depth to use with her. She places her hands on his biceps and he glances down at her.

For some reason, his breath catches in his throat.

Brooke Davis is a beautiful woman; she's always been beautiful. But there's something about her right now that has him feeling different. Maybe it's because she bites her bottom lip every time he pushes back into her. Maybe it's because her ankles hook around his waist perfectly. Maybe it's because every few seconds a raspy breath escapes her.

Or maybe it's because for this small amount of time she's all his.

He shakes his head and continues his thrusts. Brooke stares at him and feels herself climbing closer to the edge of that blissful cliff. The fact that Nathan is so damn sexy doesn't hurt the situation.

She's taken a step back from their love affair. She rarely calls him anymore and if she does it's because she really can't stop thinking about him. Nathan's the one that calls now. He calls, he texts, he e-mails; he takes any means necessary. And she loves it.

For a second, she feels that familiar pang in her chest.

This is all so wrong.

She and Nathan are both married to other people. They both took vows and made promises and that all meant something once upon a time. But this isn't a fairytale . . . its life and sometimes life is fucked up. And so are the characters that live those lives.

Nathan abruptly stops moving and it causes her to mouth to drop. She's so close and she knows he is too; she's seen that look a lot in recent weeks. She can't, for the life of her, understand why he's stopped. And then his lips meet hers and his tongue enters her mouth. The feeling of that is enough to make her lose it.

He doesn't know why he feels so compelled to kiss her, but he needs to do it. He begins to move in and out of her, slowly this time, and he smirks when she whimpers. He's constantly brought her up to that high point only to bring her back down. His hand trails down her body and dips to that spot; he rubs her sensitive area a few times and she's calling out his name.

He follows at the same time and it's the most wonderful experience. Joining another person in the utmost personal way possible. It's blissful and serene and . . . love. But it can't be love. He told Brooke they weren't supposed to feel anything.

"I should go", the brunette below him mumbles with a hoarse voice. Nathan makes a noise, but doesn't budge. Brooke savors his weight for the minute. She knows he's feeling different things then he's felt before.

It's in the subtle way he handles her body now. He's attuned to the things she likes and wants and the pleasure she can receive. It's in the way he looks at her before he kisses her – the way he kisses her is different. He tucks her hair behind her ear and brushes it out of her eyes.

Its love and she's not sure how to handle it.

It's what she's wanted – what she wants – but now that she's close to having it, it scares her. So many people can get hurt in this that it doesn't seem possible to even be a reality, but it is. He's very much married to her best friend. She's very much married to his brother.

But they're very much on the brink of a loving relationship.

"Nathan", she says in the same tone as the first time she spoke. He clears his throat and moves off of her – pulling up his pants in the process.

He watches as she puts on her panties and then pulls her shorts off of the set of weights he was using before she came into the room. They're both in his private gym a few feet from the house. The house he shares with his wife. He quickly shakes those thoughts from his head.

He had missed Brooke a lot in the recent days and he just needed to see her. He called and she coyly said she'd drop by if she had time. Thirty minutes later she was opening the door to the small building on the back lawn. They talked for a long time; which was surprising. Typically, they were all about the sex, but that, like so many other things, has changed recently.

"I should go", her raspy voice breaks him from his thoughts. She walks over to him and places a hand on one cheek while leaning up to kiss his other. She pulls away and walks to the entrance. "See ya, superstar", she whispers and closes the door behind her.

The second she's gone, Nathan misses her.

So why do you fill my sorrow
With the words you've borrowed
From the only place you've known
And why do you sing Hallelujah
If it means nothing to you
Why do you sing with me at all?

Hours later, after he's wiped down the gym and taken a shower, he's sitting in the kitchen sipping a protein shake when the front door opens. He knows it's his wife and he knows she doesn't have brown hair or dark eyes and her voice isn't the slightest bit raspy, but for a second, she does.

But it's only for a second.

"Hey babe", Peyton says with a smile when she sees him sitting at the table. He smiles back at her and wonders how he can do this. He's slept with her best friend mere hours ago and yet he's smiling and looking at Peyton like nothing's different.

"How were the kids today?" he asks with a knowing smile. Peyton does just as he thinks she will; she rolls her eyes and sits in his lap with a huff.

"They're still a bunch of hormonal monsters", she grumbles. Nathan's eyes widen.

"Hormonal? Are they hitting on you?"

Peyton smiles at him and shakes her head. Her small hand cups his cheek and her thumb caresses the skin beneath it. Nathan closes his eyes and let's himself enjoy the moment. Peyton is an amazing woman and she's been through so much with him.

But is that any reason for staying together?

"No Nathan, besides, they're seventeen", she says with a laugh.

Nathan furrows his brows and looks at her seriously. "Do you remember what I was like when I was seventeen?"

Peyton laughs loudly and he smiles. He loves that laugh of hers and he loves that he's the one who gets that reaction out of her.

"Do I ever", she mumbles and leans forward to kiss him tenderly. Nathan buries his hands in her – once again – curly hair and kisses her hard. It doesn't matter how many times they've kissed or interacted intimately.

He always misses that strawberry lip gloss.

They break apart breathless and slightly overcome with desire, but Nathan clears his throat and pats her thigh and the moments gone. "What do you want for dinner?"

"Mmm", she mumbles against his cheek. The quiet moments they make it easy for her to take him in completely. She doesn't have lingering issues from his accident and she isn't in love with his brother. It's just easy and simple and almost perfect.


"How about we just order Chinese and have a couple of beers", Nathan's eyes stare at her appreciatively and she smirks. "We can watch some old basketball footage if you want?" she offers quietly.

The game he used to love is still a bit of a shaky topic. Yes, he's been doing rehab and the doctor said he could start with some low intensive training, but so far Nathan hasn't done any of it.

So that's why, when Nathan smiles and nods his head, she lets out a breath of air. "You're so sexy, Mrs. Scott", he mumbles and leans forward to kiss her.

Peyton responds to the kiss, but it's simply because it's an automatic reaction. Mrs. Scott. She envisions that she's kissing a blonde haired man and that his eyes are as blue as the sky.

She opens her eyes and does her best not to frown. Nathan pats her thigh again and she stands from his lap; he stands from the chair. Peyton stretches her arms over her head and yawns a small adorable yawn.

"I think I'm gonna jump in the shower, okay?" she says and she starts to head to the doorway. Nathan nods and takes out the menu from their favorite Chinese place.

He thinks that maybe they'd be better off as friends. They can drink beer and eat takeout food together. They can watch basketball and he knows Peyton will call out the fouls before they're announced. But right now they're not just friends.

They're married.

Nathan puts down the phone and watches the way her hips sway as she walks away from him; he'll never deny that she's gorgeous. He doesn't know how much longer he can do this though. Put up a front of happiness; he's kind of starting to lose his mind.

He also wonders if Peyton's truly happy. He'll catch her sometimes, staring into space or knitting her brows together and he craves to know what she's thinking or feeling in that moment.

Truth be told, he wouldn't want to know.

"You know I love you, right?"

She stares at him and wonders why he's even saying this. Her heart panics and for a second she wonders if he knows. But then he grins and she knows she's got nothing to fear. Still, it's an odd way for him to phrase the endearment.

And there's a moment of hesitation before she responds. Neither acknowledges it.

"Yeah, I know", she whispers. "And I love you."

She walks over and kisses his cheek before walking up the stairs to take a shower. She closes the bedroom door behind her and rests her back against it. This entire thing is so screwed up. She wishes it could all just stop.

But they've all got images to uphold.

The fashion designer and the high school coach. The one time basketball star and his high school sweetheart wife. They're four people who are intertwined in more ways then imaginable.

And the knowledge of that could devastate this town.

We might live like never before
When there's nothing to give
Well how can we ask for more
We might make love in some sacred place
The look on your face is delicate

A knock on his door causes him to spin around in his chair and smile at the silhouette he sees behind the frosted glass. Weeks have passed since that dinner and nothing's changed. Lucas and Peyton have continued to see each other and they've become more brazen with their meetings. Which is expressed by her presence at his door.

"Come in!" he yells out to her. The knob twists and she sticks her curly haired head in. It's something she's recently gone back to because he mentioned missing them. She smiles and closes the door behind her; he hears the click the lock makes.

"I'm not interrupting am I?" she asks with a curious expression. He shakes his head; even if she was, he'd never tell her that. She walks closer to his desk and simply smirks.

"What brings you by?" she shrugs and moves to his side before sitting on the mahogany in front of him. Peyton plays with the whistle around his neck and looks at him.

"I have a free hour", she says with a grin. "And I miss you", she whispers seductively. Lucas closes his eyes and shivers. He doesn't think she'll ever know how she affects him.

"Well, lets do something about that", he whispers back. In an instant her arms are around his neck and his tongue is in her mouth.

Sine the fall's started, they've spent a lot more time together. The main reason for that are their jobs. Lucas is the coach for the Tree Hill Ravens and Peyton is an art teacher. She loves art, she really does, but it was never her first passion. She's always lived, breathed, and ate, music and she still does.

Back in senior year she got an offer to intern at a record label in Los Angeles. She really wanted to take the job, but Nathan was worried she might not come back or that it would cause them to drift apart. She asked Lucas for his opinion and he had hesitantly told her that he would never stand in the way of her dreams.

She should have known then that she was with the wrong Scott.

His rough hands push her shirt up and they quickly unbutton her jeans. Peyton unties the string of his workout pants and she pushes them down his legs. Lucas' lips leave marks on her cheeks and jaw and they stop at the spot on her neck that always makes her stop and suck in a breath.

"Have I told you that you look gorgeous today?" he asks huskily and his breath tickles her ear. Peyton blushes like any woman would and playfully shakes her head negatively. Lucas pulls back and in the same teasing manner raises his eyebrows.

"Well you do", he whispers. Their noses touch and she loves that they can go from being so intensely passionate to so unbelievably gentle in a matter of seconds, but they never lose that burning desire. "These jeans are perfect", he mumbles and his hands run along the denim.

"Your knee high boots drive me wild", he says between kisses across her collar bone. Peyton smiles because that's the exact reaction she was hoping for. They were walking around town one day, as in laws tend to do, and he pointed them out randomly.

She bought them the next day.

"I bought them for you", she tells him timidly in the quiet of this sanctuary. He smirks and then growls and she giggles like a teenager. He picks her up and lays her on the couch in his office that's become their bed away from home.

"I don't think you know what you do to me, Peyton Sawyer", he whispers softly and tucks a curl behind her ear; her breath catches in her throat.

Peyton doesn't know if he purposely used her maiden name or not, but he did and it has her mind reeling. She wishes she was still a Sawyer and this whole thing wasn't so messy. She wishes she could go back in time and listen to when her heart told her to stop doing what she was doing.

She wishes she was someone else's Scott.

But then Lucas' lips are on her neck and his hands are up her shirt and she's forgetting any thoughts she has. He's like a drug and even though it scares her, she cannot live without him. It shouldn't be like this and they both know it, but you can't fight fate.

That's what they tell themselves. Fate designed everything that's happened between them and in their personal lives so that they would eventually find one another. So that they could find that common ground. Although, neither of them are too sure that this is common or any type of solid ground.

"I have an idea", she whispers once she finds her voice. Her hips lift off the couch and grind against his; Lucas bows his head and lets out a groan. He shakes his head when he hears her giggle and after that it's a flurry of activity.

Shoes are kicked off and boots are unzipped. Pants are gone and so is underwear. Shirts and bras and undershirts are tossed around the room. And then they're together as one person and it's the most perfect feeling of completion.

Words are whispered and promises are made that they both know can't be kept. They close their eyes and imagine that they're anywhere, but here. Or that they are here and it's not in secret or with the door locked (though they know that either way it would be).

Peyton opens her mouth and Lucas mutes her moan with a kiss that leaves her more breathless then she already was. He lays atop her for a few minutes and peppers kisses along her neck. She pulls his face to hers and they kiss languidly.

"I should get dressed", she whispers. Lucas pouts and she simply shakes her head. "I've got a class in twenty minutes, Luke", she says with a laugh.

He sighs dramatically and stands from the couch; Peyton watches him unabashedly. He's beautiful in the way only certain men can be beautiful. He's still rugged and has an athletic body, but something about him makes her see that sixteen year old boy she nearly ran over.

Maybe it's that smirk he gives her.

"What are you looking at, Blondie?" he asks playfully. Peyton smiles and shakes her head. He tosses her the purple bra and black shirt she wore.

"So, Nathan's seeing a specialist in Raleigh tomorrow. He's out of town for the night", she says casually. Lucas' heart stops in his chest and he stares at her with wide eyes. She can feel him staring, but she looks everywhere except for his eyes.

She fastens her bra and buttons her shirt and grabs her jeans. The fact that he hasn't said anything is unnerving and she feels like a total fool. They haven't gone as far as having the other person over. Their houses are a sacred place that they don't think they'd ever feel comfortable tarnishing.

Well, apparently Peyton does.

"I would Peyt, but Brooke's making dinner tonight", before he even finishes she's holding her hands up and begging him not to continue. "Maybe I could come –"

"No, it was stupid", she says as she shakes her head. "I don't know what I was thinking", she mumbles with a pathetic laugh. She zips her boots and fixes her hair. She doesn't look back at him as she walks to his office door.

"Peyton!" he calls out. She stops with her hand on the knob and closes her eyes. She counts to ten and he still hasn't said anything. She shakes her head and pulls open the wooden door.

"I love you!" he yells when she's standing in the hallway and anybody could hear. They know those words are true, but they don't speak them often. It makes things difficult and even messier then they already are. They definitely don't utter those words in public.

In a second she's kicking the office door shut and running into his arms.

"I love you too", she mumbles between kisses and tears.

So why do you fill my sorrow
With the words you've borrowed
From the only place you've known
And why do you sing Hallelujah
If it means nothing to you
Why do you sing with me at all?

Brooke stands in her rarely used kitchen with an apron on and food on the burners. It's not secret that she's not a cook, but she's grasping at straws right now. Her business has picked up again and her name is pretty close to a household necessity. Lucas has been working extra hours; going over plays and watching old footage.

She never thought that them getting their dreams would further worsen their marriage.

She takes the pie out of the oven and places it on a cooling rack. Her charm bracelet hits the metal of the rack and it makes her smile. The bracelet was a gift from Lucas years ago and every so often he'll give her a new charm or someone will help her add to it. In fact, she got a new one recently.

A little barbell.

Nathan surprised her with it a few days ago; in memory of their gym rendezvous. She wasn't sure how to act when he handed her a small back box because he'd never given her a gift before. Well, at least not one that didn't have Peyton's name on the card as well.

She hears the door open and knows it's her husband. She knows he doesn't have brown hair or eyes the color of the dark ocean and his voice doesn't drop an octave when he talks to her, but for a second, he does.

But it's only for a second.

"Hey pretty girl", he says with a smile as he walks into the kitchen. "Smells great!" his grin widens and Brooke smiles a little wider.

"Thanks for lying", she says playfully. He rolls his eyes and walk forward to kiss her temple. Brooke lets out a breath and leans into his body for a minute. It's not the same muscle mass as Nathan's and she doesn't feel as safe.

But it's good enough for now.

"I'm not lying", he promises. "I'm gonna jump in the shower and then I'll be down for dinner", he kisses her temple again and heads for the staircase.

As he walks away he reprimands himself for comparing everything his wife did or does to Peyton. Brooke had all the fine china out and she was perfectly coiffed from head to toe. Peyton would have used mismatched plates and her hair would have been untamed, but he would have loved it.

Brooke takes off her apron and smoothes out the dress she wears. It's one of her designs and she has to admit that she's pretty good at what she does. While Lucas is in the shower she sets the table and lights a few candles.

Maybe tonight can be the night they start to reconnect.

She plates the food and makes sure the silverware is shiny and when she hears Lucas come down the stairs, she feels a little nervous. Lucas looks between his wife and the table before him and he smiles. She's trying so hard.

He should too.

He walks over and pulls her into a kiss that they haven't shared in a very long time. It's not filled with half the passion it used to be or it is with other people, but it's a start. He pulls her chair out for her and then he sits in his seat.

"It looks great", he says with a smile. Brooke smirks and says of course it does.

"I'm Brooke Davis", she says with the same confidence he's always admired her for. But his mind also starts to reel. She used her maiden name; Brooke hasn't used her maiden name since college. Is she trying to tell him something?

He shakes his head and pushes all those thoughts from his mind. They spend the night talking over the candles and laughing about old stories with their friends. It's easy and normal and they think they can do this.

But then she says something and it throws him for a loop.

"I love you", she says with that trademark raspy voice and well known dimples. Lucas meets her eyes, but feels the words stick in his throat. They're there, at the tip of his tongue, almost begging to escape.


"I umm . . . I love you too", he whispers. Brooke fidgets with her hands on her lap and bites her bottom lip. She can feel her eyes water with tears that are far too late to shed and she doesn't even know what she's crying for, her marriage has been over for a long time.

This was all the confirmation she needed.

She takes a deep breath and lets it out slowly and Lucas closes his eyes. He knows. She clears her throat and runs her hand through her dark brown locks. He knows. The look in her dark eyes and the way she says his name is painful. He knows.

He knows. He just knows.

They're over.

So why do you fill my sorrow
With the words you've borrowed
From the only place you've known
And why do you sing Hallelujah
If it means nothing to you
Why do you sing with me at all?

Let me know what you think!