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Fireworks Don't Change A Thing

Guest emmasi

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Topic Title: Fireworks Don't Change A Thing

Topic Description: Lucas, Amanda. Rating: T(L)(VD)

Type of story: Oneshot

Rating: T(L)(VD)

Main Characters: Lucas, Amanda.

Genre: Angst

Warnings: Containts UK spoilers.

Is Story being proof read: Yes

Summary: Lucas pays Amanda a visit on New Year's Eve.


This is a fic I entered for a contest at HAAC. It had to be set or include a scene on New Year's Eve, based around 2 characters who don't have a romantic relationship on the show, and include the 11 bolded quotes, within 5 pages, lol. It lost, but I wanted to post it here anyway :P


“You won.”

Amanda didn't know what Lucas meant by that, or why he had come to her house, ten minutes before midnight, to say it.

“Lucas, what – ” She caught the scent of smoke and bourbon on his clothes, as if he'd just come from a crowded nightclub. He was having trouble standing under his own power. “Are you drunk?”

“You finally turned Belle into a heartless bitch like you!” he slurred, ignoring Amanda's question, and answering it all at once. “You must be so proud!”

“Excuse me!?” Amanda didn't know what she'd done (recently) to provoke this abuse, least of all from Lucas. She couldn't even remember speaking to him in the past month! “What is your problem?”

“Belle dumped me!” he shouted. “She let me fall in love with her, and then she just threw me away like I meant nothing! Just like you did to Drew! Just like you did to her!”

Amanda was shocked by Lucas' aggression (he was normally so quiet and unassuming), but she could see that he was upset. Behind the anger in his eyes, tears were forming.

She glanced around the front of her house, checking that all this commotion hadn't disturbed her neighbours. It was New Year's Eve, and they were probably awake anyway, but Amanda didn't need them thinking that she made a habit of arguing with drunken teenagers on her doorstep in the middle of the night. Heaven knows her reputation with young boys was bad enough already, after her indiscretion with Drew Curtis.

“Come inside, you silly man!” she hissed, grabbing Lucas by the arm before he knew what was happening.

Amanda dragged Lucas over the threshold and locked the front door behind him. One last look through the loungeroom curtains told her that no one had seen her do it. Confident that this wouldn't be the hot topic of gossip for 2007, Amanda turned to Lucas and folded her arms over her silk nightgown. It was time to sort all of this out.

“Now,” she said, “What's this about Belle dumping you?”

“What do you care?” Under the harshness of the house lights, Lucas looked tired and sick. Amanda suspected that it was more than the late hour and excess of alcohol that were wearing on him.

“Well I wouldn't,” she lied, “But you’ve come all the way here to tell me that it’s my fault, so the least you could do is have the decency to explain yourself!”

Lucas sniffed in amusement. “Like you'd know anything about decency.”

“Is this about Drew?” Whenever someone had implied that Amanda was indecent lately, Drew's name often came up.

Lucas turned away from her. He wandered over to the lounge and sat down in silence. Amanda had been watching the New Year's celebrations on TV. The low sounds of a thousand excited revelers could be heard cheering in the distance. A lonely glass of half-finished wine was sitting on the coffee table, awaiting Amanda's return.

“It's always about Drew,” said Lucas, staring through the empty space that hovered above the dark liquid. “You are sneaky,” he whispered, as if he could see the other boy's image reflected in the glass.

Amanda sat down beside him and waited for him to become more coherent.

Lucas stayed quiet for a while. “She's gone back to him,” he answered without breaking the stare. “She says she's still in love with him.”

Amanda took a moment to register the information. “What?” she gasped. “This can't be happening!”

In all honesty, she had expected her daughter to take up with Drew again, but she had hoped that Belle had more self-respect than to let it happen so soon. Drew had left Belle for her own mother, after all. Something that Amanda was not proud of, and that few people in town, least of all Belle, had forgiven her for.

“How could she still love him?” asked Lucas, putting Amanda’s thoughts into words. “After what he did to her! After what he did with you!” He searched his alcohol-addled brain for a term fierce enough to describe his feelings towards Drew. “Flaming mongrel...” It seemed like an odd choice for a seventeen year old, but Lucas had been on the receiving end of it earlier that night when the local bar manager, Alf Stewart, had thrown him, Drew and Belle out for underage drinking.

Amanda let the rant slide. Perhaps Lucas was right. Perhaps it was all Amanda's fault. How could she hope for her daughter to have any self-respect when she had never shown any herself?

“Belle won't even talk to you because you betrayed her,” said Luc, “But Drew did exactly the same thing, and he gets away with it! Like nothing happened!”

Amanda didn't enjoy being reminded of the way that her daughter had frozen her out of her life, but she stayed silent until Lucas was done venting.

“I bet I wouldn't get away with it,” Lucas sulked. “If I even looked at you, Belle would be jumping down my throat about it. 'I can't believe you chose her over me!'” he mocked Belle's hair-trigger jealousy. “Not that I ever would… Maybe that's the problem. Maybe I'm just not 'dangerous' enough for her.” He shook his head. “I'm such a loser.”

It was a change of heart that Amanda hadn't seen coming. She didn't expect Lucas, a kid who seemed to have everything going for him, to be so insecure.

“You're not a loser,” she told him.

“Then why doesn't Belle want me?” he asked. “Why would she rather be with someone she should hate than be with me?”

“You know how girls can be about relationships,” said Amanda wisely. “'I love you, but I hate you. I hate you, now I love you.' Girls make no sense. It's just the way we're designed. You should know that by now.”

“Is that why Mattie left me as well?” he asked listlessly. “She was happier with a 'troubled' gay guy than she was with me.” Amanda could see a tear forming at the corner of his eye. “And...” He broke off, not wanting to continue the thought out loud.

“And what?” she prompted curiously.

Lucas forced himself to get it out. Maybe it would help to talk about this. To anyone. “And... my mum,” he mumbled. “She left me too... It's like every woman I care about can't wait to get away from me.”

“You don't really believe that,” Amanda reasoned with him. “It's just the alcohol talking.”

Lucas smiled, letting the tears roll down his cheeks. If only that were true.

“Lucas, your mum died. She didn't have a choice. If it was up to her, she never would have left you.”

“How do you know?” he croaked softly.

“Because I'm a mother. I may not be a very good one sometimes, but even I wouldn't choose to let my baby grow up alone.”

“You let Belle...”

“I thought Belle was dead,” she reminded him. “Even though I never saw her, even though I thought I never would see her, I still missed her every day. I still wondered what my life would have been like if she'd been there with me.”

Lucas didn't say anything. He only thought how stupid it was to miss something you’d never known.

The people on the TV were getting ready for the countdown to midnight. Soon there'd be fireworks, and they'd all be cheering for the chance at being able to start over. Like the hands of a clock could somehow sweep away their troubles and give them all a clean slate. The fools. Didn't they know that nothing would change?

Amanda followed Lucas' gaze to the TV. She checked her watch, but forgot that she wasn't wearing one. “I don't know how long we have, so if there's anything you want to leave behind in 2006, you'd better get it out now.”

“Why are we watching this?” asked Lucas, finding the whole concept rather insulting.

“I like to make sure that the New Year actually arrives,” said Amanda.

“It might be better if it didn't.”

The countdown began. The crowd shouted the numbers from ten to one, proving that they were at least intelligent enough to manage that. A sickeningly hopeful cry of 'Happy New Year!' filled the air, along with the crackling blasts and pointless display of shimmering lights. What would these people do when the momentary distraction was gone, and they had to come back down to earth?

Amanda picked up her glass of wine, throwing back what remained as some sort of confirmation that she had made it safely to 2007.

“Great,” muttered Lucas sarcastically. “Now let's sing Auld Lang Syne.” He didn't see what was so special about having to go through another year of heartache and misery, and probably another one after that.

“Come here,” said Amanda, putting her empty glass back down.


“It's tradition.” She leaned in towards him.

Lucas slowly realised what Amanda had in mind and leaned back. “No Mum, I am not making out with you!”

The statement stopped them both in their tracks.

Mum? Why would he call her Mum? Was he that drunk?

“Ma'am...” Lucas tried to correct himself. “I didn't mean...” But he couldn't think why he'd call Amanda 'Ma'am' either.

“It's okay,” she assured him.

Lucas didn't know why he trusted her – her of all people – to keep this embarrassing, if not disrespectful slip-up to herself, but he instinctively thought he could. He was still working out what his subconscious had meant by it when he felt Amanda's lips brush against his cheek. He blinked at her, watching as she leaned back and smiled.

“Happy New Year, Lucas” she said. She pushed his hair back from his face, holding her hand to the side of his head, looking on him as if he were her son.

A son in need of a mother, if only for one night.

“Happy New Year,” he responded, and for the first time since parting with Belle, he actually believed that was possible.

Amanda went to lower her hand, but Lucas grabbed it. “I didn't say stop,” he said in a clumsy attempt to let her know that he didn't mind her touching him like this. He cradled her hand to his head again, and let her fingers curl through his hair. He closed his eyes and took a sad consolation in the thought that his own mother would be doing this for him if she could.

Amanda guided Lucas' head down to her shoulder, holding him warmly to her side. Lucas slumped against her, letting her comfort him as he began to cry.



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