Title: Third Time's the Charm, right?
Summary: "I miss you, I miss this, I miss us." Those words burned at the tip of her tongue as she fought the urge to tell him everything, that she lied that night when she told him she didn't miss him anymore, that she still loved him and she's pretty sure that she always will, that she hated the fact that no matter what he still consumed her mind and yet she at the same time, she didn't mind it so much. "You're the one", he struggled to blurt those words to her, knowing well enough that she wouldn't believe him, not after all the things they've been through. What she didn't understand though was how true those very words were, that no matter what everyone thought about Peyton being the one, no matter what ever destiny he was supposed to be part of, Brooke Davis was the one for him, she always was and she always will be.
Disclaimer: Characters and the entire show belongs to Mark Schwahn and the CW. I own nothing. No copyright infringement intended.
A/N: This is my very first fanfiction so please do be kind, also any criticism in reference to my writing, the story's structure or inaccuracies on the content will be very much appreciated, since well, I want to improve my writing. Although personally, I think my writing is a bit too formal but I don't know I kinda like it considering it gives off a rather sophisticated atmosphere to the story, but if you guys don't really like it then please tell me so I'll try to fix that. Since it is my first fanfiction, reviews are very much appreciated, heck reviews are appreciated and loved even if this wasn't my first fic. Um, I should warn you guys that there will possibly be some grammatical and/or spelling errors throughout the story so please bear with me, I don't really have my very own editor to point them out and honestly I'm a lousy editor. Anyway thank you for clicking on this story and I hope you enjoy it. I won't stall anymore so here we go!
Title: Third Time's the Charm, right?
She smiled towards the camera, each flash beginning to take its toll on her eyes.
'Brooke, over here!'
'Brooke, what are you wearing? Versace?'
'Brooke! Jordan! Can we get a picture of you two?'
She continued smiling as she posed for the cameras, counting the minutes until she could finally move off. Her publicist Amanda beckoned her to begin moving towards the after-party. Brooke, relieved, resisted the urge to let out a breath she had been holding in and began making her way towards Amanda, all the while sending off her famous Brooke Davis smiles. She felt Jordan slide his arm around her waist, leading her as the papazzari hastily began to take as much pictures of the two as possible.
Once out of sight, the brunette bomb-shell let out a sigh of relief. Jordan offered her a small comforting smile as they continued walking towards the after-party. Once inside, Brooke was thankful for no longer having cameras constantly flashing at her while Jordan excused himself, telling her that he was going to get them both something to drink.
Before the brunette had the chance to do anything, Amanda guided her towards some people she was advised to mingle with. "It's good for the company." Amanda always told her. Minutes later Jordan appeared beside her and handed her a glass of champagne. Brooke smiled in appreciation and gladly accepted the drink. As she pretended to listen, Brooke's mind began to wander to the events of the past year, from her huge success with Clothes over Bros, to the hectic schedule she had and to the high-end social life she led. Brooke loved her life, she was content with the success of her company and her clothes but she was tired. No, she was exhausted. She had hardly slept for the past few years, especially seeing the amount of work she had to do. She was just exhausted from it all. She was emotionally, mentally and physically drained. She was tired of coming home to an empty, cold and dark penthouse. She was tired of living in an enormous apartment that did not feel like home at all. But most importantly she was tired of being alone. Brooke sighed inwardly and offered a nod and a "yes" every now and then in the conversation, while Jordan stood next to her, laughing at whatever it was that amused him. Brooke was interrupted from her thoughts when a certain voice uttered her name.
"Well well, if it isn't Tree Hill's very own multi-billionaire designer Brooke Davis!"
Brooke turned around; an enormous grin spread across her flawless features threatening to overtake her entire face, and resisted the urge to lunge at the man.
"Best-selling author Lucas Scott, it's been a while." She replied, a smirk playing on the tips of her lips.
"It has been, hasn't it?" he responded, wearing the all too famous Scott smirk. "Come here you." He added, opening his arms and taking a step forward.
Giggling, Brooke entered the blonde's arms, felt herself sink into his embrace and grinned.
"I missed you." She heard him mumble and responded by digging deeper into the embrace. After a few more seconds, she pulled away and grinned at him.
She finally took the moment to look at her former boyfriend and took in his appearance. It seemed that his genetic heart defect had no impact on his demeanor whatsoever. Instead, it seemed as though the blonde was more toned and built. He wore a perfect fitting Giorgio Armani suit that embraced his body perfectly, all the while sporting a subtle faux hawk that made him look more dashing than ever. It seemed as though the brooding blonde had become somewhat more handsome since she had last seen him.
"What are you doing here?" she asked curiously as she smiled at him, telling him that she was glad that he was there.
"Well I had to come for an editing session with my editor, and she actually told me to come to this party. She said it'd be good for me to … uh … develop a social life, because apparently I don't have one." He rolled his eyes at the last comment before letting out a small chuckle.
"She's probably right about that." Brooke teased, an all knowing smirk currently gracing her flawless features.
"Not you too!" feigning annoyance while his mouth played with a small smile. Before Lucas had the chance to say anything more a voice interrupted the two friends as it called for the blonde writer.
"Lucas, sorry I hope I'm not interrupting, but I was hoping you would meet a couple of people while we're here." the blonde-brunette woman explained as she looked at the Lucas directly, looking apologetic.
"Oh okay. Um Lindsey this is my friend Brooke. Brooke, this is Lindsey, my editor."
Brooke smiled at the woman who had assisted Lucas with his novel and ultimately helping him make his writing dream come true and beamed as she introduced herself. "Hi, I'm Brooke Davis. It's nice to finally meet you Lindsey."
"Uh hi! Lindsey Strauss and it's really nice to meet you Brooke. I'm a big fan of your clothing line."
"I'm really sorry to interrupt, but could I just steal Lucas for a few minutes?" the editor said all the while looking genuinely apologetic.
"Well Broody, I guess I'll see you later." She said as the familiar nickname easily slipped from her lips.
"Well Cheery, I guess so." He countered, smiling softly.
"Maybe we can meet up later? To catch up?" the brunette asked sending him her dimpled smile that the writer had missed so much.
"I'd like that. So how about I go meet the people Lindsey wants me to meet and I'll come back so we can you know catch up?"
"I'll see you in a few then Broody Boy." She beamed as she sent him a wink, effectively terminating their conversation.
The blonde writer chuckled to himself as he began to follow Lindsey's lead. Lucas felt a soft smile tug on his lips as he thought of his ex-girlfriend. It was great to see her again the blonde admitted to himself but his smile slowly turned into a small frown. It seemed as though the perky woman had somehow lost her 'perkiness' since he had last seen her a year ago. Ever since the two former lovers spent a spontaneous evening in New York, visiting bars and restaurants and getting free drinks thanks to their fake engagement, inevitably leading to a drunken Broody and a slightly tipsy Cheery which was of course was never a good combination. And somewhat during his drunken haze, the brooding blonde had planted his former girlfriend one of his famous stray kisses that obviously resulted in the brunette leaving him alone in his hotel room.
The two had hardly contacted each other ever since, sending the occasional email to one another for old time sake. The brunette had obviously kept in contact with his best friend, Haley, seeing as she the two women had grown so close in senior year that the bubbly brunette was deemed as Jamie's godmother. Lucas was certain that the fashion designer had remained in contact with the Naley clan especially seeing as his godson had spoken of his godmother and, her surprise and almost daily phone calls to him, so often that if he had a dollar every time she was mention he could definitely retire now.
It seemed to Lucas that Brooke had managed to stay close to everyone but him. And this thought had pestered him for quite some time now. Was being friends with him too hard? Or was it the fact that she despised him for the hurt he had caused her back in high school? No, Lucas was pretty sure that the beautiful brunette was over that. She had forgiven him, she told him herself and he couldn't be any more grateful for her forgiving and wonderful nature. He didn't know what it was but he was pretty sure it had something to do with the impromptu kiss he gave her that night. She said so herself that he probably won't hear from her for a while. She did keep her word for it and emailed him six months after to make sure that he was okay, that they were okay.
Sighing, the writer straightened himself; readying himself for Lindsey's introduction to the people he had to talk to. Hearing the writer sigh, the honey blonde looked at him curiously; her eyebrow raised which reminded him of Brooke's tendency to raise her eyebrow as well. Although he couldn't help but notice how his editor's eyebrow raise was not as perfect as the fashion designers'. Sending Lindsey a soft smile which she took as a form of 'I'm fine' the best-selling author was introduced to one of the many faceless people he had encountered since becoming an author.
After Lucas left, Brooke returned some of her attention to her 'conversation' with the men and women who would seem to benefit the company. However, it seemed as though they had stopped their conversation and watched her interaction with the famous best-selling author. It appeared that they were interested in her relationship with the brooding author, especially Jordan who looked at her questioningly with his eyebrow raised and a slight frown tugging at his lips. Groaning inwardly, the brunette played off as clueless and simply looked at them with a confused look. They seemed to have bought her little act and continued on with their conversation. Jordan furrowed his eyebrows together yet continued to converse with those he was talking to a few minutes ago. Relieved, Brooke sipped from her glass of champagne and slightly frowned. Jordan had seemed to slip his arm around her waist and subtly pull her closer to him. Although Jordan had done this a few times, Brooke couldn't help but feel somewhat uncomfortable. Maybe it was because of Lucas' presence but Brooke highly doubted that, considering she had moved on from him years ago and the fact that the two had never been in a relationship since senior year. She had already moved on. Hadn't she? If so why did she feel some old feelings stirring within her, wanting to burst through the locked black box she had buried so long ago. Brooke shook her head and inwardly repeated to herself that she had definitely moved on. The old feeling attempting to burst was simply because she hadn't seen the blonde author in so long.
She and Jordan had been 'dating' for about three months now. Her mother and Amanda insisted that Brooke date someone to convey the good girl image to the public. They had told her that with her constantly in the spotlight and her continuous change in male companions in every social event she had to attend, she had earned the reputation of being well a serial dater, serial A-Lister dater. After much debate, Brooke had caved and allowed her mother and Amanda to select from a list of eligible men and had come to an agreement on Jordan Theodore Richards. Jordan Richards shot to international fame after his commendable role as Henry Warwick in the controversial but widely praised film Kill Me, Oh Valerie. He was adored by everyone and had a good guy image which had immediately given him brownie points in the hunt for the perfect boyfriend for Brooke. And after negotiating with Jordan and his manager, Jordan and Brooke 'relationship' had taken the world by a storm. Although the two had never officially confirmed or even deny their 'relationship', the media had gossiped about the two and had released some pictures of the two spending time together.
Brooke and Jordan had an understanding between them. Jordan understood that Brooke was somewhat emotionally unavailable and just wanted to sever her ties from her supposedly bad image, while Jordan too did not want to be a part on a relationship just yet, especially since he just wanted to focus on his career for the moment. The two understood this and had become fast friends, hanging out with each other as often as their schedule would let them, all the while keeping their 'relationship' cover intact.
Brooke remained immersed in her thoughts before she felt Jordan nudge her, sending her a worried smile.
"Are you okay?" he asked, looking genuinely worried.
"Of course" she replied, sending him a playful wink, hoping that it'll ease his worrying.
Jordan looked somewhat skeptic however, and excused them from the ongoing conversation. Leading her towards a few seats, he sat her down and smiled.
"Now Penelope, why don't you tell me what's up?"
Wincing at the middle name her parents had given her, the brunette countered, also using the actor's middle name. "Theodore, nothing's wrong. I'm fine."
"Brooke what did I tell you about using my middle name."
"You started it." The brunette muttered as her lips began to form the oh-so-famous pout that had gotten her out of trouble.
"But your middle name isn't as bad as mine."
"No mine is worse."
"Brooke, c'mon, how is Penelope worse than Theodore. Look at Penelope Cruz, her first name is your oh so horrible middle name and I don't see her complaining. And anyway I don't see anyone naming their kid Theodore since Theodore Roosevelt." He huffed in reply, as his lips began to lift into a small grin.
"Yeah well, I know Penelope Cruz and I can tell you she may not be complaining about her name but she is still unhappy about it."
"Okay," he said, his hand raised in surrender, "now why don't you tell me what's wrong? You seem out of it tonight. More so than other nights." He teased, knowing well enough that there is something pestering the beautiful brunette. "It doesn't have something to do with Lucas Scott does it?"
Hearing his name, the brunette lowered her gaze and seemed to have decided her glass of champagne was much more interesting that what Jordan was saying. "Nothing's wrong Jordan. I promise. It's just I haven't seen Lucas for a while, okay?"
"Okay, Brooke." Jordan knew to not harass the brunette for any more information. Not when she didn't want to tell him anyway.
Unbeknownst to the two stars, Lucas had been watching the two from the other side of the room. Frowning as the two looked too close to be just friends, the blonde writer offered his final comment in the conversation before excusing himself, and making his way towards the woman who had definitely been in his mind more that he wanted to admit.
"Uh hey Brooke, I hope I'm not interrupting." He said, as he raised his hand to scratch the back of his head out of nervousness, although feeling a small frown play on his lips.
Brooke raised her head and beamed at the author. She couldn't help but let out a small laugh as she saw the way Lucas had scratched the back of his head and furrowed his eyebrow in nervousness and realized that although the brooding author had definitely grown into the man he is today, he still held onto his old shy habits that she had first seen when they first met. It was nice to see that the blonde was somewhat still the same after all these years.
"Hey Luke, what's up?"
"Well I managed to pry myself from a conversation to come here and I was hoping I may be able to whisk away a certain brunette to come and hang with me for a while." He said as he shrugged his shoulders nonchalantly.
"Huh, well if you look somewhere over there I'm pretty sure you'll see some Victoria Secret models. Oh maybe Miranda Kerr even!" she teased, knowing well enough the author's small crush on the model.
"Ha! You're funny." Lucas replied, rolling his eyes at her while he felt his lips turn into a small smile.
"You think so too?"
Jordan stared at the interaction between the two and it appeared that they had both forgotten about his existence. Clearing his throat, he stood and offered his hand.
"Hi, I'm Jordan Richards. It's very nice to meet you Lucas Scott. I'm a big fan of your books."
Lucas tore his gaze away from Brooke and turned his attention towards the man who had just introduced himself and shook his hand. Lucas was familiar with the actor, having recently watched his movie and enjoying it greatly.
"Uh hi, Lucas Scott, nice to meet you man. And thank you, I'm also a big fan of you, especially that movie Kill Me, Oh Valerie. That was some movie, my best friend raved about it and I'm pretty sure she has some kind of crush on you though I doubt my brother would ever want to hear that." Lucas said as he began to chuckle to himself, thinking about Haley's little crush on the actor.
Brooke giggled after hearing Lucas' comment about Haley. It was true, her Tutor Girl had a crush on Jordan and had bombarded her with questions when finding out that she and Jordan knew each other.
"Thank you. I'll just leave you two since you guys probably have a lot of catching up to do. It was nice to meet you Lucas." He said before offering to shake his hand once more, which the writer accepted and uttered a "You too." Turning to Brooke once more, Jordan leaned in and gave her a soft peck on the cheeks and winked. "I'll see you later, Penelope."
"So Broody, I know you wanted to hang out with one of the Victoria Secret models but you'll just have to settle with little old me for now. " She sighed dramatically.
"Settle with Brooke Davis? Never!" he gasped theatrically, before letting a soft chuckle escape his lips. "Don't worry Cheery, I'll pick you over Miranda Kerr or Victoria Secret models any day."
"Aw that's so sweet of you." She replied rolling her eyes at him before taking another sip from her champagne. "So since you're here for an editing session, I'm guessing you just finished a book?"
"No. I'm haven't been able to write anything for a while now actually. None that managed to escape the wrath of the delete button anyway."
Brooke nodded, recalling Haley telling her about Lucas' writers block.
"I'm sure you'll be fine Luke."
"I don't know Brooke. It's just, I don't know it's like I can't write anymore. Every time I think I've got something, this barricade comes and I can't write whatever it is down. I can't write anything. I don't know what or even how to write anymore." The author sighed. He had tried writing countless of times and had failed to write anything that was worth keeping. It seemed that his ability to find words and weave them into something articulate and beautiful had disappeared altogether.
"Luke, you'll be fine. If I remember correctly, you've never really had any problems with words before," the designer pointed out as she recalled the many impromptu speeches he had given her and all the well-written letters he had written to her. "And yeah right now you're kind of in a rut, but so what? We all go through that at one point. It's an occupational hazard."
Laughing, the blonde shook his head in amusement. "Brooke, you do know what occupational hazards are, right?"
"Yes I do Broody. The term works! See you have a writer's block, which leads to stress and stress totally makes your body do crazy things which in your case can totally make your heart go haywire." She huffed, feigning irritation.
"How are you doing with that anyway?" she asked, worry etched all over her expression.
"I'm fine, I've been taking my meds, so it's all good." He said as he sent her a small reassuring smile.
Half-convinced, the brunette nodded and let her worry subside. For now anyway.
"So, tell me, if you weren't here editing your book, what were you doing during that editing session?" she asked, confusion written all over her face.
"Well, Lindsey's been kinda breathing down my neck on how I haven't managed to write anything for the past few months and well I offered to be an editor for a while. You know, to find some sort of inspiration."
"That's great Luke. How long do you often stay?"
"I don't know. It really all depends on how long I want to stay. Lindsey usually send me the manuscripts but I come here every once in a while."
"So how long are you planning to stay this time?"
"I don't know. Maybe a week or two depends really."
Brooke nodded as she took another sip from her glass. There seemed to be an awkward distance between the two, as if they no longer feel comfortable with each other. Their conversation definitely showed the fact that the two former lovers were no longer close. Brooke sighed inwardly as she realized that they no longer knew each other. And that strangely scared her.
"Hey Brooke, do you think … um well … maybe we could you know … get out of here?" the writer stuttered nervously, as he furrowed his eyebrows together, squinting his eyes and reaching the back of his neck to nervously scratch it. 'Yep, he definitely is still the shy Lucas from high school'Brooke thought to herself as she beamed at the blondes' idea.
"You know Broody, I think that's the smartest thing you've said all night." The brunette said, sending him a playful wink before standing up from her seat.
"Oh so everything I've said tonight was just downright stupid?" Lucas teased.
"Well…" Brooke dragged her word before sending him a sheepish smile.
"Brooke" Lucas said, his voice playfully warning her that she better answer the question correctly or suffer from the consequences.
Chuckling, the writer shook his head at his companion and realized just how much he'd missed her and her unique way of interacting. Without another thought he offered his hand to her and gestured her to take it.
Brooke instinctively felt her hand reach out for Lucas' and sighed inwardly. The last time she hung out with Lucas resulted in a drunken kiss she had definitely regretted and somehow had stirred some previous emotions that had to remain buried. However, the majority of Brooke wanted to spend time with the blonde author, considering the fact that she had missed him terribly. Sending him a small smile as he helped her stand on her feet, Brooke shifted her gaze towards her publicist and Jordan.
"Before we go, I just kinda need to tell Jordan and Amanda about our little decision to leave this place." She mumbled to him, looking a bit awkward.
Smiling, Lucas nodded before using his head to point in the direction of Lindsey. "Me too"
"So how about we meet out back in a few?"
Lucas furrowed his eyebrows together and looked at her, puzzled at the football reference, while a teasing smile appeared on his lips.
"What?" Brooke asked as she stared at his expression.
"Nothing" and without another word he made his way towards Lindsey.
Brooke was left to stare at Lucas' retreating form and with a sigh walk towards Jordan. She knew as part of her girlfriend act, she shouldn't leave Jordan and go off prancing around the city with Lucas, but she didn't care. She had missed the blonde too much to care about the consequences. She knew that ditching Jordan to be with Lucas would be giving the media something to gossip about but at the moment she didn't really mind. Although she knew her image would be stained by being accused of cheating on the adored actor, Brooke just wanted to hang out with Lucas again and forget the world. Lucas had that affect on her, where by simply having him around and hanging out with him would make her forget about the world and all the responsibilities she had. She for once wanted to do something she wanted that was not related to work at all. She reached Jordan and asked if she could speak to him for a few minutes. After minutes of telling him, Jordan simply gave her a smile and winked. He then leaned forward, gave her a small peck on the cheek before whispering a "go get him".
"One down another to go." She muttered to herself. Brooke wasn't looking forward to explaining her decision to leave to Amanda. Not when Amanda was insistent that she attend this party to mingle with executives and, high social standing and highly influential people. She braced herself as she made her way towards Amanda and explained what was going to happen.
Twenty minutes later, Brooke bounded in her living room, having changed from her formal attire, and plopped onto her couch while Lucas stared at her amusingly. The two had opted to catch up at her apartment rather than frolic around New York City especially considering Brooke's remarkable high stilettos which would become rather uncomfortable after a while.
Brooke snatched the beer bottle that lay idly on her coffee table and took a gulp out of it much to the chagrin of Lucas.
"Hey!" the blonde let out.
"Sorry Broody, my place, my beer." She easily replied glancing at him before putting back the beer bottle to its original place.
Lucas shook his head and didn't bother refuting her comment, knowing Brooke well enough that whatever point he gave her, she would simply give him one of her unique Brooke-esque comment and that he will definitely not win their little discussion, which he of course learnt long ago from his past experience.
"So Brooke, what have you been up to? It feels like we haven't seen or talk to each other in ages." Technically they haven't, but Lucas wasn't about to get into the technicalities.
"Yeah, sorry about that." Brooke said as she looked guiltily at Lucas and bit her lower lip. Brooke knew she was to blame for the lack of communication between the two. Partly, anyway. If the blonde didn't kiss her, then she wouldn't have resolved to not speaking to him or seeing him for a while, especially not when old high school feelings wanted to resurface.
"It's not your fault Brooke," Lucas said softly, "it's kinda my fault really."
"Yeah, it kinda is." She added teasingly to avoid where the conversation was heading towards.
"Gee thanks." The blonde muttered amusingly before taking a gulp out of the bottle of beer the brunette had previously taken a swig at.
"Well I was going to take the blame for you Broody, but since you insisted it was your fault, I couldn't be selfish and take it from you." She said before adding a dramatic sigh.
Laughing, Lucas shook his head and eyed the brunette. He really did miss her. He couldn't understand how in the world he had managed to live without her for the past year. He had to admit that seeing her tonight was least expected, although it was a tad bit stupid of him to assume she wasn't going to be one of the guest at the party especially considering how popular the brunette was. Seeing her tonight, he had noticed how much he missed her and how much she had matured over the years. Her beauty still shocked him; it seemed to the blonde that the young designer looked, if possible more beautiful than ever.
"I missed you." The blonde muttered as he looked at her, his expression serious.
Brooke couldn't stop herself from staring at Lucas' icy blue eyes. His words simply caught her off guard and what got her was his somber expression. It was as if the blonde had been miserable without hearing or seeing her for the past year which surprised her to be honest. And what got her more was the fact that by saying those three simple words her heart seemed to have soared and she felt butterflies begin to swirl in her stomach. Something she hadn't felt since high school. Truth be told Brooke liked the feeling, however she knew better and suppressed the butterflies.
"I missed you too, Luke" she said, sending him a sincere smile and slowly shifted her gaze away from him feeling slightly uncomfortable at how the blonde stared at her.
Sensing the brunette's discomfort, Lucas slowly refocused his view and stared at the photos that were displayed on the mantel. Slowly getting out of his seat, Lucas made his way towards the photos and sent Brooke a slight smirk. Lucas felt his lips turn into a soft smile as he stared at the photos that brunette chose to display in her home. There were pictures of her and the gang back when they were in high school, but her mantel was mostly inhabited by the adorable face of their godson, Jamie. His toothy grin was in most of the pictures and a few of both Nathan and Haley, and Lucas was glad that Brooke was still close to them. He was relieved that she had someone to always depend on, knowing well enough that the Naley squad would do anything for his beloved friend and that she was practically family to all of them. He knew that he would always be there for her too and that he would do anything for her, but after all the dramatic ordeal they went through back in high school he knew that even if he convinced her that he would always be there for her, she wouldn't be so willing to let him all the way in. Especially considering the fact that the last time she let him in he had burned her to the point that she was now afraid to let anyone in. Although he had time and time again apologized for what he had done and was forgiven, she was still afraid to let him all the way in, let anyone all the way in. he was certain however that if there was anyone the beautiful brunette would let all the way in, it would be Haley. The two had grown so close during senior year that Lucas was sure that somewhere along the way the two had gone off and adopted each other becoming official sisters. Not that he minded if that were the case.
As Lucas continued to observe over the photos, Brooke watched how his expression change with each photo and smiled to herself. She loved that about him, how his face would often change in a subtle way when he looked at something or read something. She had noticed it when they first began dating, where he would try to get her to read a book that he thoroughly enjoyed and had more than once resorted to read the book to her instead. He would always rest against the bed head while she rested her head against his chest all the while contently watch his facial expression change with every enticing, soothing word that came out of his lips, and more often she would lean up and place a soft peck on his lips before once again returning to rest against his chest. Realizing that she was thinking of the past, Brooke shook her head as if the act would magically empty her head of the thoughts. It was then that she realized that Lucas had stopped and held a picture in his hand and was frowning slightly at it. She felt her body instinctively remove itself from the couch and make its way towards him, and on her toes she perched her head on his shoulder in hopes to see what image made the blonde look rather disturbed, which was rather stupid of her considering how the act had made the butterflies that appeared earlier return and instead of fluttering in her stomach they began to dart in excitement. However the butterflies halted to a complete stop when she realized the photo he had in his hands. The photo contained her and her blonde best friend whom she hadn't had the chance to speak to for the past two months. Frowning, the brunette gave herself a kick and realized that author still had lingering feelings for her best friend. Of course he does, Peyton's always been the one, she told herself as she began to remove her head from his rather high shoulder.
Feeling Brooke remove her head from his shoulder, Lucas cleared his throat and asked her a question that had surprisingly popped into his head.
"Brooke, if you could would you ever go back and change one thing, the one thing that you know would change everything?"
Taken aback by his rather philosophical question, Brooke stared at Lucas who was still consumed at the photo. Sighing, Brooke shrugged her shoulders.
"I don't know Luke, I mean I've done a lot of things I'm not proud of back then and I guess if I could I'd change a lot. But to choose just one moment, I think I can come up with something." She said, forcing her tone to sound lighthearted although failing miserably considering how this conversation was leading her directly to a point in life she had hoped never return to, the point in life where she had felt her heart break over and over again.
Lucas felt his head nod with her answer, although her answer didn't satisfy him at all. Lucas thought back to that one moment he had wished time and time again to be given the chance to go back and change everything, and felt his heart shatter once again. Looking at the photo his eyes rested on the blonde and he felt his heart contort in a rather painful way. Feeling Brooke's eyes on him he softly placed the photo on its original position and summed up the strength to give her a forced smile. Knowing Brooke, he knew she saw the forced nature of his attempt of a reassuring smile, and he knew she was aware of the fact that something was bothering him. She was wonderful that way, the fact that she knew when he felt like crap and that she always had some crazy way that would help him feel better. He loved that about her and he was always thankful to have her as a friend, and not a day had gone by without him acknowledging this fact to himself.
Brooke followed Lucas and softly lowered herself on the couch. She knew well enough that something was up with her favourite author and instead of asking him if something was bothering him, she opted to remain silent and simply turned her body towards him, indicating that she was giving him her undivided attention if he wanted to talk. Lucas seemed to have gotten the message and sighed.
"I'm sorry Brooke."
Puzzled, Brooke furrowed her eyebrows together and gave him a perplexed expression.
"For turning this whole thing into a sob fest," he sighed dejectedly and finally looked at her.
Smiling Brooke placed a comforting hand on his knee and replied, "First things first, Broody this isn't a sob fest. And second, should I be worried that you even know the words sob fest?"
"I think all the Bring It On and Sex in the City stuff you made me watch is finally catching up." He grumpily muttered.
Brooke couldn't help but giggle as she thought back the last time they dated and how she had made him sit with her and endure through all her Bring It On and Sex in the City marathons. The poor guy had endured through all the soapy dramas and had tried his best not to cringe the entire time.
"Oh you cannot blame me for this Broody! I'm pretty sure you liked it especially with all those cheerleaders everywhere!" she huffed as she folded her arms and attempted to glare at him.
"I actually don't." He said uncertainly before giving her a sheepish smile, knowing well that he might be in for it since Bring It On and Sex in the City were pretty high up on Brooke's Things I Love List.
Brooke laughed at the blonde's honesty before placing her hand on his arm. Her expression softening if that was even possible and she sent him a genuine smile. "I'm here for you Lucas, if you need to talk. You know that right?"
"I know, thanks Brooke." Lucas felt himself smile, aware that he was probably deemed as the luckiest guy on earth by just being Brooke's friend and couldn't help but wonder how lucky the bastard who was going to marry her someday. Lucas felt himself frown at the thought of Brooke getting married to someone and felt a sudden discomfort. The idea definitely unsettled him and he was pretty sure he knew why, although instead of admitting the thought to himself, he simply chose to ignore it. For now anyway.
"So Brooke, tell me what's going on with you?" he asked, genuinely curious, feeling the need to know more about his ex-girlfriend's life especially considering how the two had managed to live their lives without the presence of the other for quite a while.
"Nothing really." She said giving him a shrug of her shoulders. Truthfully, she had a lot of things going on, from adding the last touches to her spring line to dealing with Victoria's demands about things to appearing in different events almost every night and those things were just the tip of the iceberg. But as of moment she didn't feel like telling Lucas any of those things, all she wanted was to forget, and whenever she was with him, however momentary it was, she'd still manage to forget about reality, about all the demands and pressures everyone had on her, and of course he made her forget about how pathetic her life had become considering how her life practically revolved around one thing; work.
"Seeing as you're Brooke Davis, I highly doubt that." The blonde replied, his Scott smirk back in action. He knew her better than that, if Brooke was involved in anything, something was always going on. She always had the ability to make things more exciting that they really were, to get those around her to share the same amount of enthusiasm about certain things and that is certainly one of the many reasons why he loved her.
"Well I have work, that's pretty much the only thing that's been taking up my time lately, so…" Brooke replied with a shrug, implying that whatever work she did, were really no big deal. Lucas didn't buy it though, he was certain that the fashion designer took pride in her work and was ecstatic over the fact that she had made it big, that people loved her work and that she was making a name for herself that defied the stereotypical image she had back in high school. He was also aware that the girl in front of him had matured over the years, and finally took in her appearance. The perky and bubbly girl he had come to know and love had changed greatly over the years, no longer was she the typical popular school slut who wore rather revealing outfits, but in front of him appeared a matured, beautiful, talented and intelligent young woman who had taken the world by storm. Her long locks were no longer in sight, and her brunette hair carried a slight tinge of red but she was still brunette nonetheless. Lucas was in awe at the sight in front of him, similar to the many time in the past where the blonde author would stop in his tracks and simply gaze adoringly at Brooke Davis who had managed to swoop in and steal his heart, and it was in those regular occurring moments when he'd realize all over again how beautiful and amazing she was and it was in those moments where he would fall for his Pretty Girl all over again. No one in the world ever kept him on his toes like she did, and no one in the world made him feel like she did, and Lucas Scott knew that no one in the world was going to have such an effect on him like she did.
Feeling Lucas stare at her, she shifted in her seat slightly uncomfortable at the look he wore as he looked at her. Brooke recognized that expression, it was the expression he had worn many time during their months of dating, and she grew terribly restless over the fact that he was wearing that expression right now. She knew what the expression he wore symbolized, heck she had memorized that same expression back in high school, knowing it was just for her, that his adoring gaze filled with love was simply just for her. She had watched him date Peyton back in high school, and as much as it killed her to see them together, she was certain that her Broody never did once wear such an expression for Peyton. Sure he had other expressions which was directed simply for and only Peyton and she was aware that those expression conveyed his deep love for the tortured artist, but Brooke was content to know that she had her own expression. That she was special enough to Lucas to earn her very own adoring expression from him. However, as much as she loved the expression, it unsettled her at this certain moment, knowing that Lucas looking at her that way would mean that he loved her. Of course he loved her, she thought to herself, the two had been friends for quite some time and friends love each other, similar to how she loved Nathan and Haley. Her words of reassurance however were in vain as she knew that deep down, she didn't love Lucas that way that her love for her Broody was simply platonic. Inwardly groaning in discomfort and denial, the fashion designer once more reached for Lucas' beer and chugged its entire content, hoping that its small percentage of alcohol will settle her.
Before Lucas had a chance to say anything, Brooke let out a loud burp and the two burst into laughter. Lucas smiled at Brooke's ability to amuse him, even if it was unintentional, and he couldn't help but feel grateful to have someone in his life who had the ability to put him at ease and cheer him up. Despite all the crap the two had gone through in high school, he was more than glad to see that the two were still relatively close and that they were still friends. Truthfully speaking, he had hoped that his friendship with Brooke was stronger and sturdier, but it seemed that his past relationship with Peyton and how he broke her heart once more took its toll and the two had opted to be acquaintances rather than friends for a while. A rather long period of time had passed before the two had become friends again, and no matter how long it took, Lucas was glad that they were friends. He had come to accept that life without Brooke well, sucked. Without having her in his life, he had felt a void in him, that only the cheerful brunette can fill and no matter how much he tried to ignore this void, it always seemed to creep up and tell him that he need Brooke in his life, that no matter how hard he tried to ignore it, he was miserable without her lively presence. Lucas couldn't help but release how idiotic he was for not attempting to visit Brooke sooner because he could have put himself out of his misery earlier if he had done so.
"Hey Brooke, have I told you how proud I am of you?" he suddenly said, after realizing he had not once told her his thoughts of her success. Sure he had congratulated and praised her for her success but he had never really told her how he felt. Brooke looked at him, her eyes looking slightly glazed. Lucas sent her a soft smile before placing his hand on top of hers. "I am so proud of you Brooke, I'm proud to tell everyone that I know you and that you're my friend, I'm proud of what you've done and who you've become because you are pretty darn amazing Brooke Davis." He said as he grinned at her.
Brooke felt the butterflies in her stomach dart faster and faster in her stomach as she took in what Lucas said. She felt her eyes fill with tears, and couldn't help but lunge at him. She felt him laugh against her, his chest vibrating against her cheek causing her to giddily grin. Lucas always had that effect on her, where even the simplest words that would come out of his mouth would somehow make her feel that she was the most special person in the entire world, where his sincere words would always make her heart swell in pride, knowing that those words he said were just for her. "I'm proud of you too Luke" she whispered against him as she dug deeper into his chest, her tears threatening to spill.
"Well I sure hope so, because if you weren't I would've taken it back." He teased as he tightened his hold of her, closing his eyes and relishing the fact that Brooke Davis was in arms again, and for some strange reason he couldn't help but fell ecstatic and complete because of it.
Brooke pouted at that and playfully hit him before letting out a giggle. Before she had a chance to say anything, Lucas pulled away slightly and looked at her with expression somber. "I love you Brooke Davis. You know that right?" he said, his tone sincere and his soft smile genuine.
Brooke instinctively nodded as she looked into his ocean deep eyes, "I love you too Lucas Scott", she whispered, sending him a small smile. Brooke knew she should pull away from him, but his gaze was too mesmerizing for her to look away. Hearing the three words that Brooke loved so much seemed to have been the last straw for her because her butterflies were becoming much more restless and her buried box of feeling was finally starting to crack open. Brooke felt herself begin to lean forward as Lucas leaned down, when thankfully the God above had something else installed for the two when they were interrupted by Brooke's home phone. Awkwardly the two separated, and Brooke felt a sense of relief knowing that something she would later regret could have happened. The two stayed rooted in their seats and ignored the phone which continued to blare , seeking the attention of the fashion designer. After a few minutes and the voice of her best friend filled the room, when the phone began to accept the message.
"Hey Slut, why aren't you picking up your phone? You're usually home at this time unless…", Brooke shook her head knowing exactly what her crazy redheaded best friend insinuated and could imagine Rachel's perfectly sculpted eyebrow arched to a certain extent. "you know? You're finally getting it on." Lucas looked as though he had heard one of the most foulest thing as his eyes widened in size and he looked at Brooke, his expression slightly mortified. Brooke giggled and shrugged her shoulders at him. They heard Rachel snicker at the thought before her tone changed altogether. "Bitch you better be having sex right now because if you're ignoring my calls for work then you have completely lost your mind." The redhead muttered into the phone. "Well call me back Slut." And with that the redhead hung up, leaving Lucas utterly confused at what had just happened.
He had always been confused with Brooke and Rachel's friendship, considering how the two called each other unappealing names and how at the start of senior year, the two had hated each other's guts and by the end of the year they had become quite chummy.
"Huh…" the blonde let out, his eyebrow furrowed and his eyes squinting. Brooke let out a laugh before heading towards the kitchen. She opened the fridge, grabbed two bottles of beer. An awkward atmosphere lingered as the two remembered what may have happened between the two if it wasn't for Rachel's impeccable timing. Lucas smiled in appreciation as Brooke handed him a beer and took a swig at it.
It had taken a mere few minutes before the two ex-lovers restored the relaxed atmosphere they had previously and the two had spent another few hours talking and catching up. After realizing what time it was, Brooke had offered that Lucas stay for the night rather than return to his hotel room, and lead him to the guest bedroom. Brooke, having Jordan stay at her apartment often in the guest bedroom after hanging out, had some spare clothing that belonged to the actor and offered Lucas to wear it, knowing well enough that Jordan wouldn't mind. After getting ready for bed and exchanging their evening pleasantries, the two went off in their own respective room and attempted to sleep.
Brooke had spent most of her time in bed tossing and turning, restless over the fact that Lucas, the boy she had loved was merely a few steps away from her. After much debating, she had opted to stay in her own bed when deep down she knew that she would have preferred to snuggle against his chest and listen to his breathing, soothing her to sleep.
Lucas, similar to Brooke, tossed and turned, thinking of Brooke, before sleep finally caught up to him. With his last bit of strength, Lucas whispered a soft, "Goodnight Pretty Girl" as if by chance she would hear him and fell into slumber with a content smile etched on his face.