Coming Home: After Haley James' life is torn apart she is forced to move across the country and restart. There she is surrounded by many new people, but will Haley be able to move on from what happened to her, and will she be able to let go of her old life enough to be happy in her new one?

Disclaimer:One Tree Hill and all it's characters belong to Mark Schwahn and the CW network. Unfortunately, I own nothing. If I did, we woulda had a lot more Naley in season 8!

A/N: Okay guys, here we go again! For those of you that knew I was starting this story, sorry it took longer than expected to get published. For those that didn't know anything about it till now, thanks for beginning to read! I hope you guys enjoy this first chapter, R&R!

"Jake Jagielski, that was mean!" Haley James yelled at her best friend.

A loud laughter echoed across the yard and Haley immediately began running in that direction. When she finally made it to the tree she suspected her best friend to be behind, she slowed to a tip toe and moved around the tree as quietly as possible. Jake's back slowly came into view as Haley realized her friend was looking out on the wrong side of the large plant. She snickered under her breath and immediately threw the large water balloon that was in her hand onto the boy's head.

"Jesus Christ!" he yelled in shock and turned around, glaring at the girl that had burst out laughing.

"Sucks, buddy! That's what you get for trying to cheat and use a hose!"

"I only did it because it's not fair that you've managed to not get wet at all in this water fight and I'm soaking!"

"Man, the girl can't help it if she's damn good!" another voice exclaimed from behind the duo.

Haley and Jake turned around to see their other four friends Skills, Mouth, Fergie, and Junk approaching them, all of whom were soaking wet as well. Haley laughed and shrugged her shoulders at Jake. "It's true."

Jake smiled mischievously at the petite girl. "What are you going to do?" she asked suspiciously.

He imitated her earlier action and shrugged his shoulders. Just as Haley turned her back on him to begin talking to her other friends, Jake grabbed her waist and threw Haley over his shoulders. He started running across his lawn and quickly made it over to the large pool.

"Jacob Jagielski, you put me down right now or I'll..."

"You'll what?"

"I'll tell my mom that you snuck out last weekend and got wasted."

"Oh, you're good," Jake sighed and made a move to put the girl back on her feet. "Too bad your mom already knows!" he finished and quickly jumped into the deep end of the pool.

Moments later, Haley came to the surface of the water, sputtering in an attempt to breathe. "You are such an ass!"

Jake smirked at his best friend. "Yeah, but you love me anyway! The mom threat was pretty good though!" he sing-songed.

Haley laughed and shrugged. She wasn't really surprised that her mom knew about the mischief her friend had gotten into though. Jake and Haley had been best friends for twelve years and the entire time Lydia and Jimmy James had been surrogate parents to Jake. Jake was more like a brother to Haley, especially since she was an only child.

"Alright guys, we gotta go, but we'll see ya tomorrow. And happy birthday, Jagielski," Skills announced and the four guys that had been watching Haley and Jake began walking towards the gate to leave the large backyard.

"Bye! See you tomorrow," Jake and Haley said at the same time. They looked at each other and laughed, used to saying the same thing at the same time now.

Jake noticed that Haley was beginning to shiver in the water from the cold October breeze and swam over to her. He wrapped an arm around her shoulders and pulled them towards the steps of the pool. The duo climbed out of the water at the same pace and walked quickly to the towels they had laid out on the lounge chairs earlier. Jake picked up both towels and first wrapped Haley's around her and then did the same for him.

Haley heard her best friend sigh and gazed sympathetically at him. "You wanna talk about it?"

"What is there to talk about? Other than the fact that my parents are once again gone on an important occasion, and don't seem to care."

"Hey, who needs them anyway when you've got your overly awesome best friend here to celebrate with you? Not to mention I'm here for every other special occasion, too," she smiled at him while patting his back consolingly.

Jake smiled lovingly at her and stood up. "I can't stay in this stupid house tonight. It's too big and empty. Can we change and go back to yours?"

"Yeah, sure. My parents are out for dinner right now so we'll have the place to ourselves for a little while."

Jake nodded and the two went in separate directions to change out of their wet clothes. Since Haley spent so much time at Jake's house she had been given a bedroom of her own when they were kids. She kept a couple changes of clothes there in case an unexpected water fight broke out, like today. She took out a pair of comfy sweat pants and a tank top and quickly changed into them. When she finished, Haley walked down to the foyer of the extravagant home and met Jake who was also changed now and had his shoes on.

Haley slipped on her flip flops and Jake held open the front door for them as they began walking to his brand new Mercedes-Benz convertible. "It's nice to know they think buying me an expensive car makes up for not actually being here," he shook his head.

Haley remained silent and hopped into the front passenger seat. Jake sunk into the driver's seat and slammed his door shut angrily. He turned the car on and took off down the quiet street of his gated neighbourhood.

Jake parked the convertible in Haley's small driveway. He surveyed the slightly rundown neighbourhood and smiled. The James family may not have a tonne of money like his did, and they may live in a slightly lower class area of their small town, but he loved it. The two best friends spend most of their time in the James' comfortable home.

"Home sweet home," he whispered to himself happily.

Haley smiled at him and unbuckled her seat belt. She cocked her head in the direction of the door. "Come on, let's head inside and I'll make us some dinner. I also happen to have a rich chocolate cake with chocolate icing in there with your name on it."

Jake licked his lips hungrily and hastily unbuckled his seat belt and jumped out of the low car. Haley chuckled and followed behind him, unlocking the front door. The pair kicked off their shoes and immediately walked into the small kitchen.

"What do you want for your birthday dinner, Jakey?"

"Uh, surprise me!" he said as he sat down at the kitchen table.

"Spaghetti and meatballs it is!"

"You know me too well, James."

She smirked and nodded in agreement. Haley moved around her kitchen getting out all the necessary ingredients for Jake's favourite meal.

"So, I'm pretty sure there's some big party tonight. We can go for your birthday, if you'd like."

"When have we ever gone to those, baby James? We both know we're too cool for that crowd. Plus I wouldn't wanna have to listen to you make fun of all the girls acting like sluts all night," he joked.

"I only speak the truth."

Jake was right, had they decided to go to the party Haley would have been making fun of all the desperate drunken girls running around. Haley doesn't really hang around any of the girls she goes to school with, claiming they're all 'shallow and obnoxious'. Instead, she chooses to be friends with guys like Jake, Skills, and Mouth, people who she knows won't drown her in drama or stab her in the back.

"That maybe so, but I still would rather just spend my birthday with you, hanging out like normal."

"Fine with me. What do you propose we do tonight then?"

"I don't know. I was thinking maybe we just relax. Watch a couple movies, play cards. The usual."

"Sounds good to me," she responded while placing a large bowl of pasta down in front of Jake. Haley placed another smaller bowl down in front of the seat next to him and sat down.

Jake and Haley both immediately began eating their delicious meal. The house was silent save for the sound of forks clinking on the plates. When they both finally finished, Jake leaned back against his chair, stretching his arms as far back as possible. Haley stood up and collected both their plates.

"Up you get birthday boy, you need to help me do these dishes."

"Awe, come on Hales, it's my birthday!"

"I don't care. You're going to help me so we can go do something fun faster."

"Ugh, fine," he conceded and walked over to the sink and stood next her.

"Washer or dryer?"


Haley smiled, knowing that he was going to choose to dry the dishes. She began placing all the dishes she used for the meal in the sink full of warm water and soap. She rinsed them thoroughly before passing them to Jake to be dried and put away. After fifteen minutes Jake had finished putting away the last dish.

He walked back over to his best friend and two high fived each other. "See how much faster that was?"

"Yeah, whatever! Let's go watch a movie now, my choice."

"You don't want your awesome cake?"

"I'm too full right now. We'll have some after the movie?" he suggested.

"Yeah, sure. Now, what movie are we going to watch?"

"I'm in the mood for comedy, any ideas?"

"Comedy?" Haley clarified while walking over to her extensive movie collection. "I've got The 40 year old virgin, Anchorman, or Superbad?"

"I love them all, but I'm feeling Superbad. It's too funny to pass up," Jake laughed excitedly.

"Superbad it is," Haley said and took the DVD out of its case and put it into the player. She switched off the lights in the family room and walked over to the couch where Jake was already seated.

He wrapped his arm around her tightly and draped a blanket across them both. If an outsider to their lives saw them on a daily basis, they would automatically believe Jake and Haley were a couple. The pair usually shook their heads and laughed it off because the mere thought of dating each other was disturbing. Being best friends since Haley moved to California when she was six had allowed the two to grow up together and become almost brother and sister.

Jake and Haley sat back comfortably on the couch and became absorbed in the movie playing on the television. For the next two hours, Jake and Haley were glued to the screen, laughing hysterically every couple minutes at the funny movie.

"Happy birthday to you. Happy birthday to you. Happy birthday dear Jacob, happy birthday to you!" Haley sang happily.

Jake smiled at her and blew out the eighteen candles covering the top of the chocolate frosted cake. "And make another wish with the first cut," Haley reminded as she passed a knife to him to cut the cake.

Jake nodded and slowly made the first cut into the cake. He made a second cut and lifted the slice out of its confines with the side of the knife. He put it on an awaiting plate and passed it to his friend. "There you go."

Jake then cut a large piece of cake out for himself and put it on the other awaiting plate. He grabbed the fork that was sitting on the counter and began digging in before making it back to the couch in the family room where the credits to their movie were still rolling. Haley switched off the DVD player and the television. She sat down next to Jake and the two sat in silence eating their cake.

When they both finished Haley took both the empty plates and set them in the sink. She walked to the storage closet on the second floor of her home and grabbed as many of her board games as she could carry. Haley walked slowly back down the stairs and into the family room. She dropped all the boxes on the low coffee table placed in front of the couch and plopped onto the cushions. "Those are surprisingly heavy," she commented out of breath.

Jake chuckled and slid off the couch so he was kneeling in front of the small table. He turned each game box up right so he could them all clearly. Jake surveyed each box before moving all but one off to the side on the floor. "You do realize I'm going to kick your ass, right?" Haley reminded.

"We'll see, James. You never know, I may have been practicing."

"Have you been practicing?"

"You bet your ass I have!"

"Oh God, you're such a nerd Jakey."

"Says the girl with a 4.0 GPA," he countered jokingly.

Haley shrugged and brushed imaginary dirt off her shoulders with a mock conceited look on her face. "You should be honoured that someone of my intelligence and academic achievement is speaking to you at all."

Jake lightly pushed his friend's shoulder and she toppled over. "Hey! That was mean."

"Sorry, Hales. Your ego was getting too inflated again, I had to do something to stop it," he said and stuck his tongue out at her.

She shrugged unaffected. "It happens a lot doesn't it? I guess it should with how awesome I am," she joked and examined her nails, attempting to channel an air of snobbiness.

Jake laughed at his friend's antics and opened the box to the game he had selected. He laid the board out on the coffee table and passed Haley a wooden holder while placing one in front of him as well. Jake and Haley flipped over all the wooden letters in the box quickly. After flipping over all the letters, Jake closed his eyes and picked seven of them out of the box and placed them upright on his wooden holder. He surveyed his selections while Haley selected her letters.

Jake watched Haley's lips curl into a smile as she examined the letters she picked out. "I hope you're prepared to lose worse than you ever have," she taunted.

"Maybe Scrabble won't be you're game anymore after this one," he stated confidently and Haley laughed loudly.

"If that's what you need to believe, Jagielski."

"Just shut up and go, will ya?"

"Oh, so we're abandoning the usual dice roll to see he starts now?"

"My birthday, my choice. And I choose that you go first tonight."

"Okay, whatever you say!" she said and began laying out her letters. "L-O-S-E-R, also known as Jake Jagielski," she winked. "I believe that's 6 points to start off the game for me since the R is on a double letter score box."

"Whatever," Jake returned and once again began surveying his letters to pick out a word to spell. He nodded his head when he decided what word he was going to spell. "R-A-D-I-O, and with the double letter score on the R and the O on a double word score, I believe that's 13 points already?"

"Touché, Jakey."

"Still believe I can't win, Hales?" he teased.

"Yep! It's only been one turn, buddy. You just wait until I get going."

"I guess we'll have to wait and see," he shrugged confidently.

Haley rolled her eyes good naturedly and looked at the new tiles she had selected. The duo continued bantering back and forth as they played the game, laughing and teasing as the lead went back and forth between the two.

An hour and half later, Haley and Jake had finally finished their game of Scrabble. "And you thought you had a shot at winning!"

"I was close for a while, until you went and spelt xylophone on a triple word score and got a 50 point bonus for using all your letters!"

"Yeah, that was pretty great wasn't it?" Haley asked cockily.

"Oh shut up! That was the first game we've ever played that I've even been close to you at all! I'm pretty proud of that."

"You should be proud! That practice seems to be doing some good, but next time I won't go as easy on you for your birthday so you may wanna practice a bit harder," Haley teased.

Jake glared at her and was about to form a comeback when the door bell rang interrupting the good natured banter they had going on.

"It's like midnight. Who comes to the door at this time of night?" Haley asked incredulously without making a move to get up.

"I bet it's some drunken freshman playing ding dong ditch."

"Probably. I know we're only starting senior year and aren't that much older, but I don't remember being half as obnoxious as freshmen now," Haley complained.

"We definitely weren't," he agreed and the pair shook their heads when the door bell rang again and a knock sounded on the door right after.

"Whatever, I'm just gonna go answer and give them a piece of my mind."

Jake stood up as well and followed his friend to the door where the person on the other side was continuing to knock. Haley heard a deep muffled voice call out on the other side and she stopped walking. "Ms. James? Open up."

Haley turned her head and looked at Jake confused. The voice she was hearing was not coming from a freshman in high school. She finally reached the door and turned the knob. The door swung open to reveal two tall men dressed in all navy. "Haley James?"

"Yes?" she responded still confused.

One of the men held up their badge. "My name is Officer Dales and this is my partner Officer Massey."

"Okay? What do you want?" she asked impatiently.

Officer Dales sighed and looked into the soulful brown eyes of the young girl standing before him. She looked no older than eighteen. "I'm going to need to you to come with me. You're friend can come too, if you'd like."

"I'm not going anywhere with you until you tell me what's going on, officer."

The officer stared at Haley. He sighed again and looked away, unable to be looking at her when he spoke. "There's been an accident."