A/N: This chapter has been edited, and is no longer a stand alone one shot by the first in a series of five snap shot fics. Thank you to all those who already reviewed this story; hopefully this reposting causes no confusion!
It's Who You Know
When Lilly opens the door in a miniskirt, halfway through applying a coat of glittering lip gloss, Veronica begins to suspect that their day of lounging by the pool has been cancelled. "Hot date with Logan?" she asks, because there's no point in getting mad at Lilly for blowing off plans. Next week she'll be canceling on Logan to hang out with Veronica, so it will all even out eventually.
"Please," she says in that dramatic way that only works for Lilly Kane, "I am so done with that kid."
"Really?" questions Veronica as she follows her best friend to her bedroom. She's heard that particular thing many times before, and it has never proven true.
"Yes! Seriously, this time, I swear, V. Mars," she vows, sitting down at her vanity and leaving Veronica to curl up on her bed. They've played this scene out a time or two, as well, Lilly getting fabulous for a date while Veronica looks on. "We've like, dived up our assets and everything, total divorce style!"
"Well, I hope you took him for half his video game collection, at least," Veronica jokes, "And made a decent dent in his alcohol stash."
"That boy does have the best booze, doesn't he?" Lilly sighs, sounding regretful for the first time. "Anyway, do you want to know what the last thing he said to me was?"
"Wait, let me guess!" Veronica demands. "I can totally get this... Well, if he broke up with you it was probably 'How could you make out with Dick Casablacas, Lilly?' Except he probably called you a nasty name."
"Hey, you're the only one getting all judgy about that incident!" Lilly protests while flawlessly applying eye liner. "Besides, that was a dare!"
"Even so," Veronica says, her nose wrinkled in disgust, "It's Dick, and a jealous Logan isn't exactly a rational one."
"Well, Logan isn't jealous over Dick; he's the one who dared me to do it in the first place," Lilly explained, "And anyway, I broke up with him."
"Ah," Veronica nods sagely, "Then his last words were some iteration of the 'don't come crawling back when you're bored and horny' variety."
"Nope," Lilly denies, rustling through her stuffed jewellery box for a suitable necklace, "You'll never guess, Ronnie."
"Fine, then," Veronica admits in defeat, because she's out of guesses anyway. All of the Logan/Lilly breakups she's witnessed have ended in one of those two ways. "Tell me."
"The last thing Logan Echolls said to me," Lilly begins, managing to sound casual even as she ramps up drama to her 'big reveal'. "Was that he gets you in the breakup."
"What?" Veronica asks in genuine surprise. Sure, she and Logan have been friends ever since they both started hanging around the Kane residence on a daily basis, but it had always seemed to Veronica that he considered her an extension of Lilly. The angrier he was with her best friend, the more her snarled at Veronica.
"Yeah, he says that since Duncan's my brother I can have him," Lilly says, rolling her expressive eyes again, making it clear what she thought of that particular acquisition. "But Logan gets you."
"So I'm just another one of your 'assets', huh?" Veronica protests.
"No, sweetie, your one of Logan's assets; weren't you listening?" Lilly says, ducking the pillow that Veronica launches at her with a laugh.
"Where are you going, if you haven't got a date with Logan?" Veronica finally asks, just before Lilly stands to gather her purse.
"I've got a date with a substantially hotter guy," Lilly explains, "And I've kind of got to jet."
Veronica, a little put out, gets off the bed. "So I guess I should go spend my afternoon sprawled on Logan's bed, then," she says.
"Honey," Lilly scolds, and okay, Veronica now realizes what she just said. "You should at least break up with my brother before fucking my ex."
Veronica protests a little as they walk out the front door, but Lilly's laugh overrides her and by the time Lilly has taken off in her car, the blushing has mostly stopped. Standing at the gate to the Kane property, watching her best friend disappear from view, Veronica wishes Duncan were around. Since he's not, she's going to have to either call her mother for a ride less than twenty minutes after getting dropped off, or she'll have to walk home.
Man, Veronica cannot wait to get her driver's licence.
Idly wandering through the streets of the 09er neighbourhood, a third alternative suddenly occurs to Veronica, and before she really considers it, Lynn Echolls has ushered her into their house and shooed her out back to where Logan floats on a lounge chair in the pool.
"So, I hear I'm your new best friend," she calls out, and her silly impulse is proven worthwhile when Logan looks startled, then grins.
"Well, I had to get something out of the settlement, and Lilly had already claimed ownership of that stuffed penguin I won at the fair last month," Logan informs her.
"I feel so cherished," Veronica tells him drily. "Maybe I will go home after all."
"You have to stay, Mars," Logan contradicts. "Lilly and I have a contract. Besides, isn't Duncan still stuck golfing with Jake and his business associates?"
"Yep," Veronica agrees, smirking a little at the thought of her boyfriend stuck on the links with a bunch of men toadying up to his father. It would be sad, if Duncan weren't so good at schmoozing with them.
"Then come and lounge with me," Logan suggests, paddling his chair towards the edge of the pool.
"We'll sink," Veronica protests, "Those things weren't exactly made for two people."
" Lucky for us you're like, the size of maybe half a person," he argues shifting so there's room beside him for her. He's grinning, and a happy Logan is actually pretty hard to resist, despite how much of an ass an unhappy Logan can be.
"Fine," she sighs, knowing that she'll never win this argument – her heart isn't even really in it. Still, she doesn't exactly believe Logan about the sturdiness of the pool chairs so she slips off her shorts and shirt, glad she'd put her bathing suit on at home rather than planning to change at Lilly's.
"Well, that is not your typical Veronica Mars swim wear," Logan says, his eyebrows lifted. "What would daddy Mars say if he could see you now."
Veronica glances down at the pink and yellow bikini that she very rarely wears. "Well, I was supposed to be soaking up the sun with Lilly, who has this thing about tan lines," Veronica explains, doing her best not to blush and only barely managing not to dive back for her clothes. Her suit hadn't seemed so skimpy before, when it was supposed to be just girls. "She promised me you and Duncan wouldn't be around. Now, are you going to help me onto that drowning hazard or not?"
Logan promptly reaches up to help her down, and a minute later, with only some mild screaming an impressively tiny amount of splashing, she's tucked against her new 'best friend', basking in the sunshine while he lazily propels them to the centre of the pool.
"You got my shirt wet, Mars," Logan protests idly, and Veronica cracks an eye to investigate his claim.
"That's like, two drops of water, Logan," she argues, "And you're the one who chose to wear a shirt in the pool. You get what you get."
"Well, then, Mars, maybe what you'll get is wet," Logan threatens, rocking the chair threateningly.
Veronica squeals in protest and throws her arms around Logan's chest. "If I go down, I'm taking you down with me," she threatens, looking up at Logan with the best glare she can muster. He just laughs and relaxes the arms that are braced against the arms of the chair.
"Well in that case, Ronnie, I guess you've got me beat," he tells her, as they settle more comfortably on the chair.
This is nice, Veronica reflects after a few minutes of easy silence. This is the Logan she likes, rather than the angry version of himself he is so often, anymore. Maybe this Lilly break up really is the genuine artefact, she thinks, and maybe it will actually be good for Logan. Maybe this even is the start of a better friendship between them. Maybe –
There's a series of mechanical clicking noises and Veronica whips her head around to spot Mrs. Echolls standing on the edge of the pool, snapping photos of them.
"Aw, jeeze, Mom," Logan complains, "What are you doing?"
"Sorry, honey, but you two just looked so cute!" calls Mrs. Echolls unapologetically.
"Yeah, but I don't exactly need photographic proof laying around that would suggest that Ronnie and I are actually friends," Logan insists, even though he doesn't so much as move the arm he's got slung around Veronica's shoulders.
"Don't listen to him, Mrs. Echolls!" Veronica calls out, elbowing Logan in the ribs, "Logan told Lilly that I'm his best friend!"
"Call me Lynn, Veronica, dear," the former movie star insists a moment or two before heading back inside.
"My mother adores you, Ronnie," Logan says in rather insulting bafflement.
"Of course she does," Veronica says, doing her best to channel Lilly, "I'm adorable."
"No, but seriously, the woman physically cringes every time Lilly calls her by her first name," Logan insists, "But with you? It's all 'call me Lynn, darling Veronica'!"
" That's not adoration, Logan," Veronica dismisses, "That's just liking me better than Lilly, and since I've never been discovered in your bedroom at 4 a.m. drunk on champagne, that's not much of an accomplishment."
"Don't sell yourself short, Mars," Logan contradicts, "That woman adores you."
"No, Ronnie, this is great! Because we're going to use your super power for evil," Logan plots, "Think of all the things I'm going to be able to get away with, because my mom likes you!"
Veronica smiles as Logan continues to enthusiastically list all the debauched capers he'll be able to get away with now, just by telling his mother that he's hanging out with Veronica. Frankly, none of this sounds like stuff he wouldn't have gotten away with before, but she doesn't rain on his parade. If this is what being Logan's best friend is like, well, maybe she doesn't mind that Lilly ended up with the stuffed penguin.