Peyton had nodded. “Tell her I love her, okay? And that I’m not mad at her.” She laughed a little, still wiping the tears from her face. “I know she’ll feel guilty and I don’t want her to.” She looked into his eyes. “I just want you to be happy, Luke. Both of you.”
Lucas hugged her. “You need to be happy too, Peyton.”
"I will be," she said, smiling. "I know I will. I just have to find out who I am now."
Lucas pushed her hair back from her face. “Whoever she is, I know she’s amazing,” he told her.
Peyton nodded. “I’m not like Brooke,” she said after a moment. “I can’t just suck things up and put on a smile…this may take me a while to get over.” She frowned. “I may be gone for a while.”
"Peyton," Lucas started.
Peyton held up her hand, cutting him off. “It’s okay,” she told him, smiling. “You know how I am. We’re both moody and broody. That’s actually what Brooke calls us.”
Lucas nodded, smiling. “I’ve heard that a time or two,” he said.
"And you’re Broody and Cheery," Peyton said. "She’s the perfect person to be your other half."
Lucas watched her, knowing she was hurting. “Peyton…”
"I really am happy for you," she told him. "That’s the funny thing. I expected to be devastated- and it does hurt. But I’m so happy for you both; I know you’ll be amazing together."
"If she’ll have me," Lucas said.
"Oh, she’ll have you," Peyton told him. "You’ve always fought for her, and something tells me that this time you won’t be giving up."
"I can’t," Lucas told her. "She’s it for me, Peyton." Peyton winced and Lucas moved closer to her.
"No, no, it’s okay," she told him. "But that’s why I need to go away for a while. I need to get used to it, and so do you two." She picked her things up and moved towards her room. "I’ve been hearing some buzz about a band in Tennessee," she told him. "I think I’m going to go check them out." She smiled one last time. "Take care of her for me, Lucas. She’s my best friend and I love her."
"I will," he’d promised.