It's the middle of the summer, the middle of the afternoon, and the middle of the heat stroke that's held Neptune in it's evil clutches for days. Veronica is currently lying in her bathtub with two empty trays of ice lying on the bathroom floor. The air conditioning gave out last night and Veronica gave up on trying to fix it two hours ago. Hence the wonderful hour and a half she's spent lounging in her personal Antarctica. A piña colada and she'd be set.
Unfortunately Back-up has other plans, and she can hear the over-heated pit-bull whimpering through the paper-thin walls. She sighs loudly and moves slowly, very slowly out of her cold comfortable resting place.
She pulls on a slightly ratty grayish towel that she's sure must've been white in a past life, and opens the bathroom door, making her way to console the dog.
But what's she's faced with is much much worse than an angry canine. Leaning in her doorway looking perfectly calm and without one drop of sweat on him is Logan.
Backup, who is standing at Logan's feet whimpers
"I thought we agreed that you weren't going to come over anymore. You were going to stay in your nice cold air-conditioned hotel room and not come over to brag to me about the new pool in the hotel."
"I'm sorry we left things on such a bad note yesterday."
"Calling my house the Sahara desert and leaving to go back to your video games doesn't constitute a bad note. More like a you-being-mean note."
"I invited you to come along! I would've let you use a pool pass, and I'm sure if you came in that outfit you would've gotten a great reception."
Veronica looked down at her towel-covered chest.
"Oh this little thing? If I'd known that you were going to get this close and personal with my tan lines I would've worn something more flattering to my complexion."
"What goes with pasty white is one of the questions that has confounded the minds of our leading scientists for decades."
"This is the reason I was crying myself to sleep earlier. It was because I missed your glowing complements for a whole afternoon. It just felt like a huge piece of me was ripped cruelly away. An assholey, jerk-faced, inconsiderate part of me."
"Fine, I'll just take my assholey, jerk-faced, inconsiderate self away and not bestow my marvelous gift on you. Have it your way, but don't come complaining to me when life gets you down and you have nowhere to turn."
"What was that I heard? Was it surrender- No it couldn't be! And what's that I smell in the air? The sweet smell of victory?"
"Well if it wasn't I guess I'll just have to go drive away in my air-conditioned car. Maybe I should put a parka on, it's like a freezer in there. Veronica? Where are you going?"
Veronica has already headed to her room, threw her towel to the ground and grabbed the first clothes she found. She pulls the car keys from Logan's pocket, then runs out through the wall of heat to the X-Terra.
When Logan opens his car door Veronica is already stretched out, her feet on the dashboard, the air-conditioning on full blast.
He doesn't make a sound. Just over-dramatically shrugs his shoulders and rolls his eyes, turns the key in the ignition and they're off.
"Where are we going?"
"For the millionth time Veronica, I'm not going to tell you. And if you keep whining you'll never know because I swear to god, I'll drive this car off a cliff."
"Golly gee, pop, hold your horses! I was merely asking where the hell you are driving us?"
Logan sighs and says, "Veronica. You're a pretty bad detective if you ask me. Maybe you should find another career. Perhaps something in retail? After all, you sure are a people person!"
"Yes, I do like people, real human people. Which is why I can't stand you." She pauses for a moment. "I'm hungry. Are we going somewhere with food? Because I really don't want to go all Donner party on you. I'm sure people would thank me, but I'm used to higher quality foodstuffs and I don't know if my stomach could take it."
"How many food stamps does it take to buy Kraft macaroni and cheese? Because that's all I saw in your pantry last time I was there, and if you're insinuating that I'm worse for you then that plastic crap then I think I'm offended."
"Well, if the orange cheese sauce fits…"
The car screeches to a stop and seagulls fly away from the approaching vehicle.
"Madam, we have arrived."
Logan gets out of his car and ushers Veronica through the door with a sweep of his hands. The sea breeze is slightly refreshing, but it doesn't do much in the face of the unbearable heat.
They walk up the dock to Logan's boat, and he isn't surprised when he looks over at her and there is no shock in her eyes.
"Wait here." he says, "I need to go get something from the car." Veronica sits on the cushioned bench and feels a drop of sweat fall from the tip of her nose. She scrunches up her face and wipes the back of her hand across her forehead. "Gross," she mutters to herself. Her feet swing back and forth and she kicks her flip-flops off. It's sunny and the water is reflecting back right into her face. She wishes she brought her sunglasses, even if they make her look like the lovechild of Nicole Richie and a grasshopper.
Logan jumps jauntily back on deck, his arrival heralded by a loud "Ta-da!" and turns she her head to see him carrying a large cooler. "Oh man, don't tell me we're gonna dispose of human corpses again. So last week. In fact didn't we already do this whole boat she-bang last year?"
"Well, I seem to remember a different story. And it doesn't involve a we as so much as an I."
"Oh I'm sorry. Maybe we should just go swimming at the pool instead. Oops! I seem to have forgotten that you SET IT ON FIRE! Silly me. Now hand over the ice cream and no one will get hurt."
Logan looks up at Veronica a downtrodden look on his face. "How'd you guess?" He says resignedly.
"Never question the sugar-senses!" Veronica declares.
Logan goes and turns the engine on, steering the boat into the horizon. "You better not eat the ice cream while I sail," he says.
Veronica leaves the cooler in the back of the boat and comes to stand next to his shoulder, her neck barely brushing the side of his arm. They stand that way for a while in silence, the wind whipping their hair in all directions. He can feel her breath on his bicep, and he inches closer, letting her lean on his side.
She moves behind him and puts her arms around his waist, looking at the waves left behind in their wake. It feels so perfect, so content for both of them, and they don't even notice the heat envelope surrounding them.
"Wuhmiceemm," Veronica mumbles into his back.
"Huh?" he asks.
"I said, where's my ice cream?"
Logan smiles and stops the boat. They're far away enough so that where they came from is just a line in the distance. He picks her up and deposits her squealing body in the back of the boat.
They open the cooler and a cloud of dry ice gas floats out. "Yummy! Karamel Sutra and Phish food and Chocolate Therapy, oh my! I might need to marry you now, or at least invite you to move into my dorm next year because I'm sure we'd have the best girls nights ever. How do you feel about watching excessive amounts of John Cusack movies?"
But Logan doesn't answer, just pulls out a spoon and takes a huge scoop of chocolate ice cream. He moves it closer and closer to Veronica's open mouth then shovels it into his own, grinning wildly while ice cream drips out of his mouth.
"Nice. Very mature," she says, and hits him on the arm. She steals a tub and wraps her arm protectively around it. They eat their ice cream, sneaking bites from the other's carton of choice and talk and argue and laugh.
"Wow. I really am the bestest boyfriend ever," Logan says.
Veronica shoots him a dirty look. "Just because you reenacted some chick-flick cliché by brining my on a mystery date and supplying goodies doesn't mean you come close. In fact, if you were really the "bestest", you wouldn't have had to do this in the first place, because you'd have nothing to make up to me-" Logan tries to cut in. "Ahem- boyfriend- not finished yet! But if you wanted to be the runner up I guess we could have kissing now."
There is much kissing. And it is wonderful and amazing and Veronica is sitting on Logan's lap, until- "Ahhh! Logan! Don't do this! Stop! Stopppp!" But Logan is already carrying her to the side of the boat.
"Say I'm the best and I won't throw you the over!"
He smiles and dumps her in the water with a huge SPLASH!
Veronica searches vainly for a way to get back into the boat.
"I won't throw you the ladder if you don't say it!"
"C'mon say it! You're the bestest boyfriend ever!" Logan falsettos.
Veronica doggy paddles stubbornly.
"Say it and I'll let you come back to my room to change into some of your clothes so you don't have to make awkward excuses to your dad."
"You'rethebestestboyfriend-Why do you have my clothes at your hotel room?"
"You left them last time, remember you-" Logan sneers.
"Ever." Veronica finishes.
Logan tosses down the ladder and Veronica pulls herself up onto the deck.
"You know this is actually pretty nice. It's certainly one way to cool down. You should try it." Veronica says conversationally. Then she reaches out and gives him a huge bear hug, pulling him close to her sopping wet clothes.
"And a great end to a great day." Logan remarks.
He kisses her briefly then sets sail for the docks.
They get back and pour themselves into the X-Terra. They kiss for a bit then drive to Neptune Grand.
Strangers give them odd looks as they drip on the carpet in the lobby, and they look at each other and giggle. In the elevator Logan makes a move to kiss her, but Veronica pushes him away.
"Stop, my dad has access to the security tapes! We are the picture of propriety now understand?" In response Logan reaches down and squeezes her butt.
They open the door to his room and he leads her to his closet, pulling out one of her skirts and a top with a flourish. "Are you sure you can't stay for a while?" he asks.
"You mean do I want to have sex with you now? Yes, but I need to be home in three hours."
"Fine," he says. "We have one more place to go anyway."
They get back in the car, with much complaining on her part that is only stifled when he gives her a patented Logan Echolls look of death. They park in front of a Home Improvement store and she squints to make out the sign.
"So are we going to end the evening with a little dry-walling then? Because you know I'm always up for some renovation." she says, puzzled. He gives her a smirk and says, "Wait just one minute."
But he's gone for a bit longer than one minute and Veronica's getting impatient. She hums a song and drums her fingers on her thighs while she waits.
Finally she sees him come out, or rather she sees his jean-clad legs come out, because the rest of him is obscured by a huge brown box. He is toppling over, and the box tilts precariously, but then he rights himself.
Veronica is paralyzed with fear and each time the box tips she draws in a huge breath. And then she can see it almost fall to the pavement, and her brain completes the drop, she can see it in her minds eye; the box falling in slow motion to the hard ground and it shattering into tiny pieces demolishing whatever's inside.
But fortunately in the time she's spent imagining what could happen, Logan has made his way to the trunk of the car and the box is safely stored away.
They drive home in silence and when they reach Veronica's apartment Logan goes to bring the box in, and Veronica offers to help.
"No. I can do it myself."
"You're right girly-man, you would be a wimp if you let your girlfriend do heavy lifting for you," Veronica declares in her best Ah-nold impression, "C'mon, I really really like presents, but they lose their magic somewhat when they're smooshed."
Logan grumbles, and they both grab an end and bring it inside.
They lay on the floor of Veronica's living room.
"Those directions weren't in English."
"And the only reason that you could fit it in the window was because you had better momentum."
"And you finding the on/off switch was merely incidental."
"Fine. Veronica, good job setting up that goddamn machine."
"It really is much colder now that hell's frozen over, but I'm sure the air conditioning system that I set up marvelously contributes a great deal."
Veronica rolls over and sees the VCR clock. "Logan you gotta go."
Veronica ushers a whining Logan outside and waves at him while he drives away.
Veronica lays in the middle of the living room directly in front of the breeze generated from the A.C.
"Hey honey, you fixed the air conditioning!" She hears her dad shout from the doorway.
"Yep."Please review! This is my first really fluffy piece and I want to know if any of my readers came down with diabetes so I can cut down the sugar.