James Lafferty and Bethany Joy Galeotti by Fred Norris/The CW James Lafferty and Bethany Joy Galeotti by Fred Norris/The CW

In Part 1 of our Q&A with Mark Schwahn, the creator of One Tree Hill ruminated on the big love "rectangle" and other plans for Lucas, Brooke and Peyton. Here in Part 2, Schwahn surveys what's ahead for the rest of the gang. Season 6 of One Tree Hill kicks off Monday at 9 pm/ET. - Matt Mitovich

TVGuide.com: What is Haley's No. 1 priority these days?
Haley ( Bethany Joy Galeotti) has got a lot going on. The show demands that some have more going on that others, and this year Haley doesn't have one through line; she's got like five. She's got the issue of being a musician - if she wants to pursue music, does that mean touring? Will she be happy just writing songs? Will she be happy teaching music? Will that take her away from her family in a way that she's not comfortable with? At the same time, she's really relevant as a teacher. And she's obviously relevant as a mom and a wife. If Nathan and Haley are going to pursue their dreams, can they do it differently or will it be history repeating itself? The first time [they tried that], it was very hard on their relationship. I hear from people a lot, "Aren't you ever going to let Nathan and Haley be happy?" And I feel like they are by far the most stable couple on our show! We throw a lot of obstacles their way, but so far they have been overcoming them together. So I think of them as being happy.

TVGuide.com: Is Nathan (James Lafferty) on track for a "miracle" recovery? How goes rehab?
He is on track for a miracle recovery, and we actually use the word "miracle" from the doctor. As he pursues getting back on the court, it's hard to say how far he can push it. He could end up back in the wheelchair again if he pushes it too far. What's he willing to sacrifice, and how patient and abiding will Haley be in this quest? What I love about Nathan, who has really matured despite having had no architecture to be a father or a husband, is that he's finding his way to some sort of peace in all of this. He still wants what he wants, but he considers everyone else in the equation more than he ever did. It's a journey that, if kids are taking anything at all away from One Tree Hill, they can learn from.

TVGuide.com: Is Nathan's mom still cavorting with Skillz (Antwon Tanner)?
Yes, actually. People thought it was absurd, but what I love about it is that there are scenes early on this season that had literally everyone around me saying, "Well hold on a second these two are interesting together!" We play it for comedic effect, but there's some great human stuff behind all of it. Whether or not the relationship will continue - whether it can, in the face of friends family - is a big storyline. It's wacky sometimes... but it's also more than that.

TVGuide.com: Which is faring better for Mouth (Lee Norris) - his personal life or the professional?
Both are OK right now. Again, the story is "Can you have both? Can you be happy with both?" Before Millicent, Mouth became this guy who was floating around. He was with like 80 different girls the season before. Millicent was his perfect fit in many ways. But Mouth has history like everybody else - there's a clue in there - and he's also chasing his own professional aspirations.

TVGuide.com: He had to make some tough calls last season, professionally.
He's the worst employee in history! The guy has a different job every week, always quitting or coming back. Or, he's not running an important story because he's protecting his friends. There's a story coming up where he has a lead which could help one of his friends.... His heart's always in the right place. He's one of the few characters with a strong vision of what he wants for himself. Some people find that vanilla, but there's a place for characters like that on a show like this.

TVGuide.com: I'm supposed to see Paul Johansson during my visit to the set in North Carolina. I assume Dan is still alive-ish and kicking...?
Well... Craig Sheffer (Keith) has spent a lot of time on the show, and he was dead, so.... [ Laughs] Look, every show needs a villain, and I think that Paul is essential to the show. But I never saw myself parting ways with Keith either. Most fans are waiting to see if he's still alive and if he is, who's he going to be. That's all up for grabs.

Coming soon: Part 3 of our conversation asks Schwahn to weigh in on the big rumors surrounding the show, including the most pressing one of all: Is this Tree Hill's final season?

One Tree Hill Set Visit Videos:
" Chad Michael Murray Tells (Almost) All
" Hilarie Burton: No More Tears for Peyton?
" "Bonus" Burton: Hilarie Shows How to Play "Who's Coolest?"
" Sophia Bush: Is Brooke Still in a Dark Place?
" Bethany Joy Galeotti: Love Scenes Ahead for "Naley"?
" Lee Norris on Mouth's "Interesting" Love Life
" Young "Jamie" Reveals His Cast Mate "Crush"
" Meet Ashley Rickards, Tree Hill's New Troublemaker
" Still to come: James Lafferty!