Title: Stolen Moments
Summary: Moments we haven't seen, moments we've seen and just what Logan and Veronica may have thought during them throughout Season 1. LoVe.
Disclaimer: I do not own Veronica Mars, just burrowing the characters and scenes.
Copyright: Sarah Diaz 2006
Thanks: To Melmenetkwe, who was so nice to offer her invaluable beta skills and makes sure my English doesn't sound too much like German.
Author's Note: There are many scenes throughout Season 1 where I couldn't help but think: What's going on in their head there? And even more scenes that I can imagine happened in the background. So here they are. Hope you enjoy it!
I Of Bongs And Crowbars
Feeling eyes on him, Logan looked up to see just who was focused on him. It didn't take him long to spot the source.
Who else? He leaned against a post and, for a moment, he watched her himself, noticing the thoughtful expression on her face. There was no longing anymore in her expression, not for a long time now and Logan was glad for it. It made it easier for him to remember that this girl wasn't his friend anymore. He wondered what had her thoughts this occupied that she hadn't even noticed yet that he had spotted her staring.
Suddenly though, he could see her coming back to the here and now also growing aware of his staring back. He smiled at her and she visibly tensed.
She had every reason to. He for sure wouldn't let an opportunity to taunt her like this one simply pass by. Getting an idea, he quickly sat down on an unsuspecting Duncan's knee. He felt his best friend tense behind him, hear him asking what had gotten into him, but Logan kept his eyes steady on Veronica as he leaned back against Duncan's chest, muttering to Duncan to simply go with him. Sending her over a knowing smirk, he started to rub his hands over his chest in a seemingly lecherous, suggestive way. Though he knew for a fact that Veronica didn't stalk Duncan, as it was the general rumor, one he had no qualms to fuel, he still knew that Veronica wasn't over Duncan yet, despite them not being together anymore since almost a year now and counted on his tease being very effective in striking that nerve.
Just like he strongly suspected that his best friend wasn't completely over his ex-girlfriend as well yet. And sure enough, the moment Duncan understood what Logan was doing, he shoved him off his lap so forceful that Logan actually had to catch himself from falling to the ground. Once he regained his balance, he sat down on the bench with his back to the table, laughing over to Veronica's table while he clapped his hand once and then pointed at her. Veronica met his eyes with narrowed eyes on her own.
Oh yeah, he had hit just the right nerve.
Then though, she broke their eye contact by turning her attention on the guy sitting vis-à-vis from her now.
Logan did a double take. Wait, where had that guy come from? He had been so focused on Veronica he hadn't noticed the black guy sitting down at her table. Logan frowned. Who was he anyway? And how come he sat down at Veronica's table? Everyone at Neptune High knew better than sit down there.
He turned his head to look back at his friends. "Does anyone know who that guy sitting with Veronica is?"
Madison glanced over and shrugged. "The new kid, Flannel or something like that. Probably hasn't heard about her yet," she told him. With her job in helping out in the registration office she always knew the latest news, especially about the new kids. But if they didn't belong to the 09ers, she simply ignored them, not bothering to keep the details like, oh, correct names.
Well, that would explain it, Logan thought, looking back to Veronica, now seemingly deeply engrossed in her conversation with the guy.
"Isn't that the flagpole guy?" Shelley asked.
Logan looked over to her. "Flagpole? The bikers tucked another guy to the flagpole?"
"Yeah, didn't you see him?" Madison asked. "Oh right, you were late today, weren't you?"
"Mars had to ruin the fun anyway, cutting him down," Dick said, coming up to their table and making a face.
"She cut him down?" Logan asked.
Why wasn't he surprised? She always had that strike in her, her need to help people out. And she always had had a soft spot for the new kids at school. He should know. After all, he too had once been the new kid.
"Yeah, and while doing so threatened to castrate Toni with her knife. Gee, that girl's seriously sick," Dick answered with a shake of his head.
Logan glanced over to Duncan who had yet a word to say. Usually, when the name calling part on Veronica started, it was the time when Duncan left. This time though, he didn't show any signs of leaving. Instead, he stared intently over to Veronica's table, a frown appearing between his eyes. Raising an eyebrow, Logan turned back around to see what had captured his friend's attention – and felt himself tense slightly.
In the short time he hadn't paid attention, the PCH biker gang had Veronica's table surrounded with Eli 'Weevil' Navarro, their leader, talking to the new guy. Logan didn't know the bikers very well but he didn't think that Navarro was too pleased with the guy not tacked to the flagpole anymore – or the person who had cut him down.
And sure enough, the group shifted a little as Weevil frowned and went over to loom over Veronica, who stared up at the biker seemingly unaffected.
Uneasy, Logan watched Veronica facing off the biker gang. True, he and Veronica Mars were enemies. That didn't mean though that he liked to see the biker gang harassing her. He saw Veronica getting that certain look in her eyes she always had when she was going to wiseass.
Heaven knew he had seen that look directed towards him more times than he could count in the last year.
But hell, she couldn't think that those idiots would simply let her do that and do nothing about it! There was not one who hadn't already a rap sheet! She should know that after all, most of them could thank her dad for said rap sheet. And sure enough, one of the guys, Felix Toombs, seemed to lose it after her comment, heading over to her, his hands going to – his pants?
Before Logan even realized what he was doing, he had sprung halfway up from his seat, ready to head over there. Not that he wanted to help Veronica. But he'd be damned if he let the bikers hurt her.
Besides, it was always fun to confront the bikers.
Luckily though, Vice Principal Clemmons showed up at that moment and broke up things before anything got out on hand – or before Logan made himself look like an idiot. With a frown, he sat back down.
Just what had he thought he was doing? He had been close to rush over there and start a fight with the bikers over Veronica. This was ridiculous. He hated Veronica. And he had good reason to. She had betrayed him and Duncan and Lilly and pretty much everyone who thought she had been a friend. So why would he care if she had a run-in with the bakers or anyone else for that matter?
Once again he glanced over to Duncan and their eyes met for a moment. Finally, Duncan shook his head and got up, leaving without another word.
Sighing, Logan shook his head.
That must have been it.
"Hey, there's Veronica!"
Veronica knew that voice only too well - and the owner of the voice. They haunted her for almost a year now. And before that year… Yeah well, she didn't want to think about that time now.
It was long forgotten past.
So instead, she tried to hurry, hoping to get away before Logan managed to catch up with her and mock her a little bit more. Truth was, even when she didn't let it show anymore, she still dreaded with what clever little hints Logan would come up next in order to hurt her. He sure had mastered in that art. Okay, when it all had begun, it had been easy to inflict pain with words.
She had been that weak.
Not anymore though.
Yet, Logan Echolls still managed to find a comment or do something that would get to Veronica, try what she may to not let it happen.
But that damn bastard just knew her too well. He knew almost every sore point she had and had no problem to hit them again and again and again. Like yesterday, when he had taunted her with his act on sitting on Duncan's lap and his eyes never leaving hers. He had known exactly how much it would affect her, even if she knew what he was trying to do.
And with the luck she had lately, she wasn't too surprised that Logan didn't leave her alone this time either and pulled up to keep pace with her in his big, ugly X-Terra.
"Hey Ronnie," Logan called out and Veronica tried hard not to react to his old nickname of her. She hated when he used it, it drove reality home way too much, a reality, where her best friend was dead and her other friend hated her. Thank God he didn't use Ronnie often anymore.
Sometimes she wondered if it brought up as painful memories for him as it did for her and that was why he seldom used that special weapon of his against her.
"Hey, we've decided that we'd, uh, we'd rather surf than study today, you wanna come with?" Logan asked. "Duncan will promise to take his shirt off. Does that sweeten the pot?" he added with glee.
Veronica continued to walk along and told herself over and over to ignore him. So what if a year before, this question to accompany them would actually have been an honest suggestion? It meant nothing.
"Does it make you horny?" Logan wanted to know, smirk evident in his voice and a sideward glace confirmed it. "Hex DK, flex for your ex!"
Okay, that one was easier to ignore. It was too ridiculous to really hurt like some of Logan's other remarks. But Veronica wasn't so stupid to let him know that. Should he only believe that these comments about her and Duncan got to her… At least then it wouldn't be something else, something that really would hurt.
"Shut up, Logan!"
When she heard Duncan's protest, Veronica suppressed a shake of her head. Sure, Duncan had never participated in the name calling and other sick little games Logan and Co had started against her after she had made clear that she would stand with her Dad, no matter what. No, he had just broken up with her, without giving her even a word of warning or explanation and ever since then gave her the cold shoulder and that had happened even before the war between her and the 09ers had begun. And he had sat by countless times while Logan went after her, hardly ever saying anything. Dimly, she wondered why he protested today of all days, but then she pushed that thought far away.
Besides, she had other things to worry about. Like Logan, who simple wouldn't give up, still keeping pace with her. "Hey, hey, hey!"
Exasperated, Veronica stopped and turned to face him, realizing with resignation that he just wouldn't leave her alone.
He came to a stop as well and leaned out of the window, holding out a hipflask towards her. "What do you say to a little hooch, huh?" His eyes were laughing at her. "What's the matter, aren't you your mother's daughter? Hmm?" he asked with a devilish smile, the only warning for Veronica to brace herself for his next attack. "Now there was a woman who could drink. Hey, what's she up to nowadays, maybe she'll join us. Do you know where she is?" Logan wanted to know and the hard shine in her eyes showed that he was well aware of just what painful daggers he had sent her way, hitting dead on. "Any clue?"
Damn that asshole!
Bringing up her mother was just not fair; it was an all time low, even for him, and God knew that he made a point to hit below the belt on a regular basis.
Damn it, damn it, damn it!
This time, when Duncan intervened, she was only thankful. She didn't let it show, she wouldn't give Logan that much power, but still, when he grabbed Logan's shoulder and told him to leave her alone, she was relieved, because this time, she hadn't any comeback ready for Logan.
Logan sat back into his seat, laughing, and held up his hands. "Ooh, chill pill, man! All right, all right!" He looked back to Veronica and all of a sudden, he lost the playfulness and just stared at her with contempt for a moment. "Aww, she used to be fun, man. Bye," he said shortly, looked away and floored the gas to race off the parking lot.
Veronica stared after the yellow car, trying to fight off the memories of the last time she had seen her mother before she had run off, abandoning her husband and her daughter right when they would have needed her the most, but failing.
Closing her eyes, Veronica shook her head in order to shake off the unwanted memories. Shit. This couldn't go on like that. She couldn't let Logan continue to do this to her. The problem was that she didn't know how to make him stop. She had tried to give him back everything he dealt out with the same venom. But after he had gotten over the initial surprise that she could actually keep up with him in their little war of wits and striking remarks, she had noticed that her giving back actually only fueled his eagerness and imagination. The bastard actually started to enjoy it! And, if she was totally honest, some sick part of her enjoyed it also. It just felt so damn good to shove everything back into Logan Echolls' stupid grinning face. But with time, it got a little out of hand, not to mention that it miffed her to do something that pleased Logan, so she had changed tactic and gone to stoic indifference. Well, as much as she could manage, but then, in the past year she had learned the hard way to keep in her feelings.
And she was pleased to see that her silence seemed to irritate Logan, yeah, even angering him. For a while, that had felt extremely good. But an enraged Logan could… no, would get even more vengeful than he already was.
Like him bringing up her mother.
Thank God he had no idea about the rape. She shuddered to think about what he'd do with that information.
There was a slight twitch in her heart, one she tried to ignore – but couldn't. She sighed. No. Even if he knew, Logan wouldn't go that low. Veronica knew him well enough for that. After all, they had been friends once. And with him being her best friend's boyfriend and with her being his best friend's girlfriend that meant that they had spent a lot time together. Even before that, after all, they had met and befriended each other when they had been twelve and back then, they hadn't formed couples with the Kanes yet, that had came a couple of years later. In four years being friends and spending almost all of her time together with him, and then a year being the most embittered and spiteful enemies, you got to know a guy pretty well and she knew that Logan wouldn't step so deep and use such a thing against her.
Just like she knew that he would never bring up Lilly against her as she'd never do that to him. But of course, Lilly was a sore spot for both of them, someone they both had deeply loved. Veronica as Lilly's best friend and Logan as her boyfriend.
Then again, the person she had once known as Logan wouldn't have shoved the knife into the wound of her mother's departure either, and then give it even another good twist with obvious glee.
Truth was, Lilly's murder had changed Logan as much as it had changed Veronica. So perhaps she didn't know him so well after all as she always had thought she did. And perhaps it was time to forget about her attempts to stop an open war onto someone who once had been a good friend.
It was time to fight back with hard bandages.
An idea formed in her head and she started to smile.
Oh yeah, that might just be perfect – and the beauty of it, it would deal with two flies at once.
Ms Murphy looked up from the slip in her hand. "Logan, the Vice Principal wants to see you by your locker."
Surprised, Logan looked up. Meet him by his locker? Clemmons usually only awaited a pupil at his locker when a locker search was going to take place. Those searches usually only affected other kids though, almost never one of the 09ers. The risk that a rich daddy or mommy would take offense at their kid's locker being searched was too great for that. It was no secret that the 09ers ruled this town.
Well, if they wanted to search his locker, sure, no problem. They wouldn't find anything anyway.
But if he took much longer to get there, Clemmons certainly would have no problem to throw him into detention and that would seriously disturb Logan's plans of going down to the beach with Dick and the guys after school and try out the new board he had bought yesterday.
With a shrug, he got up, made a 'later'-sign to Dick and quickly left the classroom to go to his locker where indeed, Clemmons and a deputy waited for him.
He raised an eyebrow. "Mr. Clemmons, You rang?"
"Mr. Echolls, would you please open your locker for us?" Clemmons said stoically, ignoring Logan's flip.
Logan grinned. "But with the utmost delight, Vice Principal Clemmons," he said cordially and wriggled his eyebrows. He turned to his locker and opened the door, leaving it wide open. Not even bothering to look inside, he stepped back to lean against the row of lockers and gave the other men a big smile. "There you go."
Clemmons gave him a look and then turned to look into Logan's locker – and raised his eyebrows. "Well, what's this Logan?" he asked and reached inside.
Shocked, Logan pushed away from the locker wall and stared at the bong that Clemmons had pulled out from his locker.
"This would appear to be a device they use to smoke marijuana," Clemmons said, eyeing the object in form of a cherub in his hand.
The deputy nodded. "That's exactly what it looks like," agreed, eying the bong as well before both their eyes went back to Logan.
Logan, flabbergasted, stared into his locker and back to the bong again. He couldn't believe it! Okay, someone must have planted it there, obviously, because he had never seen that damn bong in his life, not to mention that it wasn't Logan's habit to smoke marijuana. Besides, did Clemmons really think he was so stupid to put it into his locker if it were his?
Who the hell had set him up like that? And how had he gotten past the lock anyway?
Logan looked around, hoping against every logic to have the answer revealed to him like magic.
He caught a movement down at the corner of the corridor and narrowed his eyes.
Perhaps he didn't need magic. Quickly, he moved towards the spot behind the corner, trying to see who was standing there to watch the show. Chances that it was the bastard who was responsible for this little prank were pretty high in his opinion.
It only took a few steps before he got a good view on just who was standing there. His eyes widened, before they narrowed down to slits again. "It was you?" he asked, truly blown away now.
But sure enough, the tiny blond girl let her eyes widen and stare innocently at him, giving him a face that clearly read, 'who... me?'.
Logan laughed. Who would have thought that she had that in her? He had to admit that he was pretty amazed about her little prank. Didn't mean though that he would let her get away with that. Growing serious again, he headed towards her.
"Listen, I know it was you!" he said as he came closer, never leaving her out of his eyes. "This isn't over, okay!" he promised her, coming to a stop in front of her.
Again, she smiled sweetly and made a big show of yawning, her eyes sparkling with mischief.
Logan grinned. "You're so cute." He felt Clemmons grabbing him by his arm and starting to push him away, but Logan resisted. He wasn't yet finished with Veronica. Not by a far way. "Listen, I'll get you for this," he told her, pointing a finger at her.
This was war.
She had the nerve to look unfazed by his threat.
"Let's go," Clemmons said forcefully and pushed him harder.
"I will," Logan assured her, giving her a last look before Clemmons managed to drag him away once and for all.
Grinding his teeth, Logan broke free of the hold on him and held up his hands. "Okay, okay, I'm coming," he hissed, glaring at the Vice Principal.
"There's no need to act so affronted, Logan. This is a serious matter," Clemmons said, frowning.
Logan snorted. "It's not my bong," he clarified. He knew it was to no avail, they wouldn't believe him. But he wanted it to have been said at least once.
"It was found in your locker," the deputy pointed out.
"Because someone planted it there!" Logan told him, annoyed.
"Now come on, Logan, who would have an interest in planting anything in your locker?" Clemmons asked with heavy sarcasm.
Logan looked away. "Oh, I know someone there," he murmured, his blood starting to boil. Oh yeah, Veronica sure had plenty of reasons to do this.
Actually, he should have expected her to attack sooner or later. But since she had stopped to fight back with words and had changed to simply give him an ignorant, cold shoulder, he had thought she just… he didn't know, take it all in a stride or something like that. And even if he had anticipated retaliation, it wouldn't have been something like that. A very clever little scheme against him, he had to admit that.
And it seemed so very un-Veronica like.
Then again, if one thing had gotten clear this past year, then that he obviously had had no idea who Veronica Mars really was. Apparently, four years of friendship with her had all been a lie. Because if she had been that friend he had believed she was, then she wouldn't have stabbed them all in the back.
But to be honest, he wouldn't have given this prank even to the new Veronica he had gotten to know this past year. Okay, when she had started to answer his remarks with biting comments of her own, he had been surprised. But he had had no problem to adapt to that and soon, he had mastered at getting into a wit war with one Veronica Mars.
And just like before, he would have no problem to adapt now.
Veronica wanted to play dirty?
Dirty it was.
"There you are! I already thought you backed down," Veronica greeted Wallace as he finally came jogging over to her as she waited by her car.
"Who me? Never! You've got to have more faith, girl," Wallace said with a smile.
"I rather go with mistrust. Less disappointment then," Veronica answered dryly and gestured Wallace to get into her car, which he did with a swift jump over the passenger door. Smiling, she got into the driver's seat.
"Man, you've got to lead a really boring life," Wallace commented as she started her car.
"It's not so bad. Every Tuesday I eat ice cream for dinner, you know. Highlight of my week," she gave back, and with a look backwards, pulled out of the parking lot.
"I'll call Newsweek and let them know about this adventure extraordinaire," Wallace laughed and Veronica found herself laughing along with him.
Veronica couldn't help herself - she liked this guy. He seemed to be really nice. And funny. He could be a real good friend.
At that thought, she shook her head. 'Don't get your hopes up, Mars', she told herself firmly. She didn't need a friend. She had well survived the past few months without a friend and she would continue to do so. It wasn't as if she was alone after all. She had her father and the work for the PI office. And Backup. She didn't need anything or anyone else.
No. Wallace may be new, but sooner or later one of the 09ers will tell him one rumor about her too many and he'll see that socializing with her was social suicide at Neptune High and he was far better off without her as a friend.
Yeah. But then again, he had sat down at her table earlier on again, hadn't he? Despite having must have heard several things about her, judging by the comment he had made when she had joined him at her table.
"Hey, you still in there? If not, I'd appreciate it if you'd let me out before you crash into the next truck and send us all to Heaven."
Coming out of her thoughts, she glanced at him. "Don't worry, this world will have you for a bit longer, yet. I'm just not used to have company in my car that doesn't drool all over the backseat."
Actually, she wasn't used to have company at all anymore, but he didn't need to know that. It would sound way too needy and full of self-pity.
He shot her a wary look. "I hope you mean that dog of yours or I'm seriously never getting into your car again."
Veronica laughed. "Who says you will even get another chance of getting into my car again?"
"Now, you wouldn't let this cool new friend of yours use that very un-cool school bus, wouldn't you?" Wallace replied, wriggling his eyebrows at her.
"Ah, so now we're friends, huh?" Veronica asked with a smile, secretly telling her heart to stop beating so loudly.
"Well, are we not now on the way to get my butt saved or not?" Wallace asked, raising an eyebrow.
"In my book, when you're doing all this to get my fine ass saved, you definitely get to be a friend, especially when this is the same girl that cut me down from the flagpole," Wallace said.
Veronica used a red light to look at him and shrug. "It's no big deal. Believe me, getting to see Logan's ass busted was worth a lot. And getting to see Lamb being made a laughing stock, as the plan entails it, will be even more worth it."
Wallace shrugged. "You keep telling yourself that, friend. Hey," he asked, grinning widely. "You heard that they suspended Echolls?"
As the light sprang back to green, Veronica looked forward again and simply nodded. Yeah, she had heard of that. It was what she had expected Clemmons to do.
"And before I left I heard one of his friends, some blond guy, telling a bunch of other guys that apparently they even took him down to the station where the Sheriff gave him the third degree until his dad showed up with a lawyer," Wallace continued and shook his head. "Boy, they really don't like bongs in lockers, huh?"
With a frown, Veronica gave a shrug in answer, but frowned. Okay, she hadn't minded to get Logan suspended. How she knew him, he would use the free days to hang around the beach and play computer games all day anyway. But she hadn't wanted him to get into any real trouble. What if they charged him? She had thought he'd be safe from that, with him being Aaron Echolls' son, but what if she had been wrong? Then again, Logan could tell them to do a drug screen, couldn't he? That would show that he hadn't taken any marijuana and that together with his name and daddy's lawyers really should guarantee him to be get out of any trouble she may have caused, right?
Probably. And if not… well, she could always make an anonymous call to the police and tell them that she had seen some strange guy putting that bong into his locker. Though she'd really hate to do this.
So Logan better had to see that his privileged status paid off like it was supposed to be.
Besides, once she had gone through with her plan there wouldn't be any evidence left anymore anyway.
Speaking of the plan, there was the Sheriff's department already.
'Time to fire away,' she thought grinning as she pulled into the parking lot.
"Congratulations, Logan, now you really have outdone yourself! Have you any idea how many calls I've already gotten from reporters to ask me if I plan to send you to the rehab clinic? They don't want to talk about my new movie, they don't want to hear about my donation to the local library, no, all they want to know is if my son is perhaps following his father's example," Logan's father hissed, his face a grimace of anger.
"Dad…" Logan tried to explain, not for the first time.
"What Logan? Still wanna tell me that someone set you up and planted a bong in your locker? Still wanna tell me that it's not your bong? That you don't take any drugs?" his father interrupted him, his voice dripping with sarcasm.
Logan's hands balled to fists. "Want me to take a drug test? Fine, I'll do it. I'm not into drugs, least alone marijuana. And if I'd use a bong, you really think it would have the form of a cherub and be hidden in my locker?" he asked defiantly.
"Oh, you will take a test all right, the Sheriff insisted on that, it was his condition to let you off the hook again this time. And you better hope it gets back clean. It's bad enough that you got suspended as it is, we can't need a charge on top of that and the Sheriff made clear that that's what we have to expect should the screen get back positive," his father told him, glaring at him out of cold eyes.
Logan shook his head. "Don't worry, your precious image won't get tarred," he said bitterly, turning away. Boy, this day had gone downhill ever since Clemmons had dragged him into his office. First, the Vice Principal had called his parents to inform them of their findings and tell them that Logan would get suspended for three days. Then, after that they could come and pick Logan up from the station. That's right. The deputy had dragged him down to the station where Sheriff Lamb was only too pleased to interview him, that little bastard. And he had been even more pleased when Hollywood legend and two times Academy Award winner Aaron Echolls, had showed up to come haul out his son's ass, forced to be super nice to the little Sheriff in order to get what he wanted. Something, that hadn't eluded Logan's father.
If Aaron Echolls hated one thing, then to be ridiculed and to have to play nice at the same time. Not to mention the bad press he'd get with a son falling victims to drugs and getting in jail – which would no doubt be the way the press would lance this story.
To say his father was displeased would put it supremely mild. Logan had seen that the second his father had strolled in with one of the lawyers in tow.
And Logan knew only too well what it would mean to have had displeased his father – even if it hadn't been his fault.
Damn that Veronica Mars!
Having been lost in his smoldering thoughts, he hadn't really paid attention to his father anymore and was startled when he found him standing right in front of him.
"What?" Logan asked, confused.
His father's eyes narrowed. "The keys to your car. Give them to me."
"What!" Logan asked again, this time outraged.
"You think I let you drive around when the whole world thinks you're high on marijuana? I don't think so. The keys. Hand them to me, now," his father demanded.
"Hell no!" Logan exclaimed, taking a few steps back. "You can't take my car! I didn't do anything, damn it!"
He knew this would only make it worse, but he couldn't help it. His T-Bird! His father wanted to take his T-Bird away. The only thing that guaranteed him at least some freedom and a way of escape from here! He couldn't just let his father do that, even if he knew what it would mean for him. And sure enough, next thing he knew, his cheek was burning.
"Don't you dare to disregard my orders, Logan!" his father told him, frowning. "Now hand out those keys and I warn you, I won't ask another time."
For a moment, Logan stared into his father's eyes, before he let his shoulders slump down and slowly reached into his pockets to get out the car keys. No. As much as he loved his car, he didn't want his father asking another time.
His father took them and pushed them into one of his own pockets. Then he looked back at Logan and simply nodded towards his office.
"Really, Aaron, don't you think…" Logan's mom cut in quietly – or tried to.
Her husband threw an icy glare her way. "You keep out of this, Lynn. This isn't your business."
Logan watched as his mother bit her lips and then turned away, heading over to the bar to undoubtedly pour a drink for herself. He looked back to his father who gave another firm nod towards his office, his eyes hardening in warning. Taking a deep breath, Logan straightened, held up his head and walked by his father to go to the closet.
He knew the routine after all.
"Veronica… your car," Wallace said, uneasy.
Startled, Veronica looked over to where she had parked the Le Baron – and felt herself tense. Great. She knew that Logan sooner or later would find her; she had just hoped it would be much later. And when she was alone. Because she had the feeling that it could get ugly.
Time to face the music.
Resigned, she pushed the controls for the model plane back to Wallace and headed over to her car – and Logan, who had sprawled out on the hood, three of his 09er-buddies surrounding them, each and every one of them a shit eating grin on their faces. One of them, Ian Rakovsky, softly called out to Logan to let him know that Veronica was coming.
Logan looked up and smiled at Veronica as she came to a stop in front of her car. "Hey, Veronica Mars!" he greeted her and sat up, jumping down from the hood.
His voice was way too pleasantly. It actually made the hairs on the back of her neck stand up - more so than the crowbar in his hands, which Logan let twirl ominously. She knew he'd never raise that thing against her. His words though… they were far more dangerous, held the power to inflict pain like that crowbar never could.
But she'd be damned if she let him see her wariness.
"Do you know what your little joke cost me?" Logan asked casually, pacing to the left.
"Well, I'm pretty sure you won't be getting your bong back," she answered coolly, with a little smile as she remembered her prank. It really had been a good one, one of her best - so far, if she might say so herself.
It was apparent that Logan's thoughts didn't duplicate her own as he stopped and turned swiftly, the crowbar swinging along and smashing right into her right headlight. He looked up at her and grinned, twirling the crowbar. "Wrong answer. Would you care to guess again?" he asked, his voice still using that pleasant tone of his.
Veronica briefly looked at her smashed headlight, then back to Logan. What the hell had gotten into him?
"Clearly, your sense of humor," she said sweetly.
Even if she had anticipated it, she still flinched a little as Logan took out her left headlight as well.
"Nope. You're usually so good at pop quizzes," he said and stopped to look at her, his eyes hard. Oh boy, he really was angry, she thought silently. "No, the correct answer is my car," he told her. "That's right. My Daddy took my T-Bird away."
Well, that would explain his anger. Veronica knew just how much Logan loved his yellow monstrosity. After all, she had been with him when he had seen it for the very first time and fell in love with it. She sighed inwardly. She guessed she could say goodbye to her rear lights as well in that case.
Or perhaps not, she thought as Logan pranced towards her, swinging the crowbar to let it rest behind his neck. "And you know what I won't be having?" he asked, coming to a stop right in front of her, smiling. She looked up into his eyes and there was not even the slightest trace of a smile. "Fun, fun, fun," he told her, he told her, his eyes boring into hers, the pleasant tone gone, only to be replaced with a malicious and brutal tone. She knew he was going to make her pay. But she wouldn't go down without a fight,
It was no wonder that neither of them heard the bikers pulling up behind Veronica's car.
Ian's nervous call made Logan break off the staring contest he currently was engaged in with Veronica. Impatiently, he looked up to see what Ian wanted. Couldn't he see that he had more important things to do right now? Like showing one Veronica Mars just how very amused he had been about her prank.
God, it had felt good when he had let the crowbar smash into her headlights, to hear the glass breaking and the shards shatter to the ground.
A cold rage had been growing ever since the bong had been found in his locker yesterday until he couldn't wait any longer anymore to go out and find Veronica to give her a peace of his mind. So he had called Ian, knowing that Ian wouldn't mind driving him around if he got to see Veronica getting what she deserved. Ian never had liked Veronica, even before she had fallen from grace and she had still been under the protection of Duncan and Logan. Oh yeah, he had known that Ian wouldn't pass on the opportunity to see a former protector of Veronica go after her with a passion. He had been a little surprised when he had seen Mike Zeller and Bobby Thompton in the backseat when Ian had come pick him up in his SUV; after all, he hadn't planned to have such a big audience. Not to mention that he wasn't the biggest fan of either of them. They were idiots. Then again, they too had never been Veronica's biggest fans and he could be sure that whatever he planned to do, they wouldn't rat him out for it. Besides, the more people were there to watch, the greater Veronica's humiliation would be.
Not that he had had any idea what he wanted to do, once he had found Veronica. He had decided that he would just act on instinct. All he knew was that he wanted her to pay. Pay for the bong and the suspension he got for it, pay for his father taking away his car, pay for his burning back, pay for being who she was now and who she wasn't anymore.
'She must pay', was the only thought running in his mind.
At first they had tried it at school, only to learn that she had skipped the last class. They had driven by her father's office but she hadn't been there either. So they had driven aimlessly around town some more, hoping to spot her somewhere, with no luck though. The guys had gotten tired when Logan had gotten the idea to try out Dog Beach where she used to go take a walk with Backup. And sure enough, there they had finally spotted her car, and had pulled up beside it. It hadn't had taken him long to make out her tiny blond figure down on the beach, standing with the new kid and – letting a model plane fly? He had briefly wondered about that, knowing that she wasn't much into such toys, but then he had pushed those thoughts away and instead had looked around for her trusted bulldog. He had been relieved when he didn't find him. Looked like she had come alone to meet the black boy. It would make things a lot easier, without having to fear that she would sick Backup on him. True, he and Backup had always gotten along well and he had liked the dog, something that had seemed to be vice-versa. But he also knew that Backup listened to Veronica and if she gave the order…
Yeah well, he hadn't had to worry about that after all.
"What now?" Ian had asked when they had finally found her.
Logan had watched Veronica a moment longer before he had looked at her car – and had smiled. She had cost him his car. So it was only fair if he saw to it that she suffered a little car trouble as well, wasn't it? "We wait. Hey, you've got a crowbar in your car?" he had asked. Upon Ian's nod, he had gone to get it and then had settled on her hood, trusting that it wouldn't take her long to notice him waiting for her.
He hadn't been wrong. It had taken her barely ten minutes to come up to them, the black kid trailing after her and looking uncomfortable, not that Logan had paid him any attention. Oh no, he had had only eyes for Veronica and her fucking self-content manner she had put on. She had no idea what she had cost him. Mentally imaging her car without breaking the stare-down, Logan thought he had taught her a lesson pretty well in the end.
Oh yeah, taking out her headlights had been fun.
But from the looks of it, the fun time was about to be cut very short, Logan thought as he saw the PCH gang pulling up.
Logan assumed that they had come for the new guy. Perhaps even for Veronica as well, to take revenge on her for helping the kid. And this time, there was no Clemmons around to hold them back. Okay, he didn't know if those guys would step so low and beat the hell out of a girl as well – but as long as he was there they wouldn't get the chance. Sure, he hated Veronica… that didn't mean that he'd stand by and watch someone beat her up though. After all, he wasn't yet finished with her. Besides, after the couple of days he had, he wouldn't mind to get part of his stashed up frustration and anger out on a few bikers.
Slowly, he turned, letting the crowbar fall down to his side and stepped away from Veronica – right between her and Weevil, who had gotten down from his bike and was heading towards them.
"What do we have here?" the biker asked, looking at the scene in front of him, the crowbar in Logan's hands and the debris of Veronica's headlights. "Vandalism? No, no, no," he said, shaking his head and coming to a stop in front of Logan. "Only vandalism that happens in this town goes through me," he told Logan, giving him a hard look.
With a start, Logan realized that the bikers weren't here to hurt Veronica… Oh no. It looked like Weevil was actually ready to revenge Veronica's headlights. Shit. That changed everything. "Listen man, I don't have a problem with you," Logan said quietly, staring at the smaller guy.
"That's where you're wrong," the biker said and looked down at the crowbar in Logan's hand. He reached for it. For a moment, Logan thought about holding onto it, but with another look around he decided, it wasn't worth it after all.
"Hey yo, is this O-Town any good?" Felix exclaimed, standing by Ian's car and holding up a CD. "I mean my little sister likes it but you know, she likes ponies and juice boxes too."
His hands balling into fists, Logan glanced at the guys who looked pretty uncomfortable, then back to the bikers. Fuck it all; they had no chance against them. Especially as he suspected that Ian, Mike and Bobby wouldn't be much of a help. And sure enough, when Weevil walked over to Ian's car, Ian hurried to assure the biker that this wasn't Logan's car, but his mother's. So much for loyalty, Logan mused as he watched Weevil smirk at Ian and then smash the crowbar onto the silvery SUV's hood, taking out one headlight and then beating as long onto the hood until there was a visible dent.
"That's it," Weevil announced smugly and turned to Ian, who stared horrified at his banged up car, holding out the crowbar to him. "Head for the hills. I'm not gunna say it twice," Weevil told the guys, the threat clear in his voice.
Disgusted, Logan watched them scramble towards the SUV. Such wimps. He had to see to it that next time he had a run in with the PCH gang; he'd take along more reliable guys. Okay, to be fair, he hadn't expected to have a run in with the bikers, let alone for them protecting Veronica. How come they were ready to help her out anyway? He glanced at Veronica, who had yet to say a word and so far had only watched the happenings with cautious eyes. Hmm, he was pretty sure that she was as surprised at the biker's help as he was.
"Except for you. You say you're sorry."
Turning his attention back on Weevil, Logan saw him coming towards him again, pointing a finger at him. It took him a moment to get the meaning behind those words, but once he did, he laughed. Who the hell did that guy think he was? Giving Logan an order and such a ridiculous one at that? "Rub a lamp," he told Weevil with a smirk.
Weevil smiled back – and slammed his fist into Logan's stomach, hard. As Logan hadn't seen that one coming, at least not so fast, he had had no time to prepare himself for the blow and doubled up with the initial pain. He needed to take a few breaths to make the pain subside.
"I said, say you're sorry," Weevil demanded a second time.
Taking a last deep breath, Logan straightened up again. It took more than a blow to his stomach to get him down, a lot more. For a second, he met Veronica's eyes that watched with obvious discomfort. Nice to know that she was as reluctant to see the hell getting beaten out of him as he had been with her. Not that he had suspected otherwise. She never had been a big fan of violence. He on the other hand was an entirely different case. Not that he liked it especially. He was just used to it.
Logan looked back at Weevil. "Kiss my ass," he told the biker, deliberately challenging.
Weevil didn't hesitate a second and sent a right hook right into Logan's face, who got thrown down by the force of the blow. Logan could feel the familiar taste of blood in his mouth. He had to give it to Weevil that the guy had a mean punch there. Still, the scars on his back hurt more. Slowly, he got up again and looked defiantly over to Weevil, silently challenging him to hit him again. The biker may think that he was week 09er who was easily to bring down – truth was that Weevil had to bring on a lot more to bring Logan down.
After all, he had gone through a hard and never-ending school.
It looked as if Weevil was up for the challenge. He approached Logan again. "Now…"
But at that moment, Veronica intervened. "Let him go," she told Weevil in a final tone.
Weevil looked at her. "Are you sure? I could do this for a while," he said, sounding disappointed.
'So can I,' Logan thought grudgingly. He sure didn't need Veronica to come safe him from the big, bad biker.
Their eyes met for a long moment.
"I don't want his apology," she said quietly, her eyes holding his.
Logan suppressed a laugh. Yeah right. As if he was going to apologize to her. He'd rather let Weevil beat him to death before he did that. Judging from the way she looked at him, she knew that as well. Hence her intervening – and the silent request in her eyes for him to just leave. He shook his head and wiped the blood away, glancing at the biker, then back to Veronica.
What the hell. It wasn't worth it anyway.
She wasn't worth it.
Without another word, he turned and went by Weevil over to the SUV who was waiting for him, trying hard not to stumble. Not in front of Weevil and his bikers. Not in front of Veronica. He opened the door to the passenger seat and got in.
""Let's go man, come on. Are you all right?" Ian asked anxiously.
Logan gave a sarcastic laugh. "I hope you guys are comfortable," he said dryly as he slumped into his seat. Really great buddies he had there, watching Weevil beat him and not even trying to intervening.
"What should we have done, man? It was fifteen on four and we all know that none of them goes out without at least a knife carrying with them!" Ian defended their lack of action. "I mean, you've seen what that lunatic has done to the car!" He made a dark face. "Jeez, my parents will kill me for that."
"Whatever," Logan murmured and pulled down the clap to see in the mirror if his nose had been broken with that last hook of Weevil. Nope, all whole, just a bit bloody. And the blow to the stomach hadn't really caused any damage either.
But that wasn't the point. Weevil had no business to get between Logan and Veronica. What they had going on between them was their business, not anyone else's and certainly not Eli Navarro's. He glanced back via the mirror, seeing that Weevil was standing in front of Veronica now – very close. With a humorless laugh he pushed the clap back up. If he wasn't completely dense, he'd say the biker had the hots for Veronica.
Stupid guy. Did he really think Veronica would go after a guy like him? Her, perfect little Veronica who had been Duncan Kane's girlfriend? Her, who was the ex-Sheriff's daughter? Okay, so he wasn't sure just what was the new Veronica's type, so far any guy had known better than to go after her, at least as far as he knew. But he was pretty sure that it wasn't the biker.
Still, he did wonder how it came that the PCH gang suddenly seemed to have Veronica's back. And just what had they wanted initially when they had come by? Had they just driven by and seen Logan and Veronica and thought they'd intervene? Or had they come down to the beach in search for Veronica and/or that new guy? If yes, why?
He didn't know. But somehow, he got a feeling that maybe it was worth trying to find out about that connection between Veronica and the bikers. After all, the way things were between him and Veronica, it was pretty important to know if he had to expect the bikers giving her their protection from now on.
Because he and Veronica weren't finished yet with each other by a long haul and he liked to be prepared.
Veronica looked over to Wallace who still seemed to be in a light shock. "You okay there?" she asked with a smile.
Wallace turned unbelieving eyes onto her. "You kidding, sis? I should ask you that!"
Veronica's smile widened. "Me?"
"Yeah! I wasn't the one who got threatened with a crowbar!" Wallace pointed out with raised eyebrows.
"Hmm?" Veronica asked and then laughed. "Oh, Logan. He didn't threaten me with that crowbar," she told him.
"Sure looked like that to me," Wallace said with a frown.
Veronica looked out to the ocean. "Trust me, Logan's a psychotic jackass, but he's not one of those bastards who use crowbars to beat on people. If he beats, then with his own hands," she said. "Besides, he'd never raise his hand against me or any other woman. He's old school that way," she added quietly.
"You seem to know him pretty well for being his enemy," he remarked, still frowning.
Veronica glanced at him and shrugged. "Not really," she said.
It was true. She wouldn't have thought him capable to take out her headlights with that much obvious glee. Apparently she had been wrong. Or she had had seriously misjudged his level of humor. Then again, she wasn't quite sure yet just what consequences he had had because of her prank. Something told her that he hadn't gotten off as easy as she had expected him to, or he wouldn't have been so angry. And his father wouldn't have stripped him off his car. So perhaps it was partly her fault too, what had happened earlier on. She'd see what she could find out, later on. Still… she didn't plan to let him off the hook so easily. Somehow, she'd find a way to let him pay for the damage he had caused, sooner or later.
"And those bikers! First they're ready to kill me and you along with me I guess and then suddenly this Weevil guy defends your honor!" Wallace shook his head. "Don't expect me to see through this whole shit."
He wasn't the only one there. Veronica had been as surprised about Weevil's help as Wallace here – and Logan. He too hadn't expected them to be there to help her. Actually, there had been a tiny moment, when Logan had turned and stepped forward to meet Weevil, where she could have almost sworn that he was ready to help her against the bikers. But that was ridiculous. Why would he want to protect her again, all of a sudden? No, she must have imagined that flicker of the old protector he used to be. Logan sure had no qualms to face off with Weevil anyway. She frowned. Why hadn't he just left? He hadn't even tried to fight back, to her surprise. Good, she was relieved he hadn't, because she was pretty sure there would have been no way for her to break it up then, the bikers would have been on him like the Greeks on the Trojans. She was just glad that Weevil had let him go when she had asked him too. Because she had known that Logan would never, in a million years, tell her he was sorry. He would have rather let Weevil beat him to death than let those three words come over his lips.
Stupid, stubborn, idiot.
"But you know what?" Wallace asked and Veronica came out of her thought to look back at him, questioningly. Wallace grinned. "I have the feeling that life as your friend will get very interesting, Veronica Mars."
Her heart filling with warmth, Veronica grinned and shrugged. "Don't get your hopes up, Wallace. Trust me, life isn't always this exciting for me."
At least she hoped not.
(Author's Note: I know, I know, again a new story. But it just that I can't fight off all those bunnies! Be assured that I'm also writing on Rekindling. And on my GG stories. RL just threw me a curveball and my writing time got seriously cut, so it takes even longer to get one of my not exactly short chapters out. Just be patient and you'll get rewarded, I promise! Okay, on another note: You certainly have noticed that English isn't my first language. So I could need a beta for my VM stories, one who's good with grammar and if possible also with modern language and sayings. If someone's interested, please let me know. Hope you enjoyed this one!)