Logan felt like he was being torn in two. His mom was dead. His mom! She was gone and there was no way he could ever see her again. The hope he had been holding onto for the past week had been ripped away from him as soon as Trina turned around in the lobby. How could she be so heartless? His mother was dead, her step mother and she was using her credit card for free accommodation!
He didn't have anything left to hold on to so he clung to the first person he could find; Veronica. He was weeping in her arms. Not caring who could see. His mom was dead, he was allowed to grieve. Veronica was doing her best to hold him up but she was so much smaller than he was and his weight slowly pushed them to the floor. They were kneeling and Veronica was rubbing small circles on his back. Eventually his sobs began to subside.
"We should get out of here," Veronica whispered in his ear and suddenly he realized what he was doing. With great difficulty Logan pulled away from her embrace and pushed himself up off the floor.
"We can take my car," She suggested, not noticing his resistance.
"No," He said quickly. Veronica hesitated for a moment, and then grabbed his hand. The contact made him jump and he jerked away. Veronica reached for him again.
"Logan," She said stubbornly, "I won't tell anyone about this little incident if you're so worried," The hard edge that usually accompanied her words was mysteriously absent.
"But you have to come with me," She continued, "We still have to wrap up the case." reluctantly he followed her out of the hotel and climbed into her car. At first the ride was silent. Veronica didn't know what to say and Logan just stared out of the window, his fists clenched.
"I'm so sorry," Veronica mumbled after a few moments. Logan didn't answer strait away. In the past he would have replied with a snide comment about the fact that she should be but it didn't seem right. Not after what had just happened.
"How could she do this to me," He breathed, banging his fist on the dashboard. Veronica jumped slightly in her seat.
"I don't know," Veronica replied honestly, "But from what you've told me about Trina, it wasn't really unexpected."
Logan squeezed his eyes shut, "I wasn't talking about her." They kept driving.
Logan wasn't completely surprised when she drove them to her apartment but he wasn't sure if her dad would appreciate it. Keith had to know how he'd treated her over the past year.
"Dad's not home," She informed him as they climbed out of the car. Logan couldn't help but sigh with relief. He wasn't ready for an awkward conversation with the ex-sheriff.
"So you're old enough to stay home alone now?" Logan cocked his eyebrow.
"I was always allowed to stay home alone," Veronica returned, "You just weren't allowed over when I did."
"But I am now?"
"Well…" Veronica thought about it for a moment, "There's no specific rule in place but I think dad figured you wouldn't lower yourself to be seen in this neighborhood, let alone in our apartment."
They were at the door to her apartment when they heard the first shot. It came from the balcony above them. Now, most normal teenagers would have fled into the nearest room and locked the door behind them but she was Veronica Mars and he was Logan Echolls and no one ever said they were normal. Veronica ran as fast as she could up the stairs with Logan hot on her tail.
The scene they walked into was like something from a movie, a gory serial killer movie. Crumpled but propped up against the far wall was the body of a woman that Veronica vaguely recognized from the complex. Her eyes were vacant, glazed and staring strait ahead, just like Lilly's had been. Cowering next to her was her live in boyfriend. 'Mr. Dodgy' Veronica had nicknamed him. Standing in front of them, holding a menacing handgun was another man, with wild eyes and an intimidating presence.
Veronica had never met him but there was no doubt that it was Liam Fitzpatrick. She'd seen enough about him and his family while her dad was working at the sheriffs department. His reputation preceded him. He spun around when he heard their footsteps and fired twice in their general direction. They both ducked and suddenly realized how stupid it had been to run towards the shooting.
They scurried back down the stair, a trail of bullets following them. They gained a few seconds when Liam spun around to shoot Mr. Dodgy but it wasn't much. Logan's heart was beating hard in his chest as they pelted towards the car. His heart was beating, he was still alive. The next few minutes, or maybe it was hours, were a blur. They somehow managed to escape but they had nowhere to go.
Logan's face was recognizable; Liam had to know who he was. And even if he didn't, his niece Molly went to school with them. It would only take a quick description and they were identified. They were dead men walking, well dead man and woman walking. There was no doubt what would happen to them if any of the Fitzpatrick's caught up with them. At the very best they'd end up like Mr. Dodgy and his girlfriend.
So they drove. Not towards Mexico, that was too obvious, they were headed in the other direction actually. For the first half hour Veronica's mind was blank. This day had just been too much. Why wouldn't it just end? That was all she could think besides, got to get away. Logan didn't bother asking where they were going, he didn't particularly care. There wasn't anything keeping him in Neptune except for the small fact that he was still a minor.
The sun was just starting to sink below the horizon when they arrived in a small town that Veronica deemed far enough away to be safe. She pulled up in front of a bank before turning to Logan. They hadn't spoken the whole time they'd been in the car.
"I need you to withdraw as much money as you can without drawing suspicion. Make it seem like it's an everyday occurrence, like you're buying a new car or something. Then we need to start driving again. We need to get to an airport and get out of the state." She finally took a breath. Logan just looked at her.
"What?" She demanded.
"No," He replied softly.
"Logan, we have to," The weariness in her voice was evident. "We can't just stay here, they'll find us."
"I'll get the money," He assured her, looking just as tired, "But we're staying here tonight, we can't drive like this and there is no way the Fitzpatrick's will take less than a few days to catch up. They're good with their fists but they're not the brightest bunch." For a moment Veronica looked as if she was about to disagree but then it faded, she didn't have the energy.
"Fine," she sunk back into her seat and Logan hopped out of the car.
Twenty minutes later they were unlocking their room at The Silver Sun, it seemed to be very Camelot-esque. They stumbled inside and Logan immediately collapsed on the bed. Lying flat on his back, he rubbed his face with his hands.
"Well, this is fun," He groaned.
"No it's not," Veronica looked so defeated.
"Don't be such a doubting Donnie; it'll be just like a road trip.
"Doubting Donnie?" Veronica half yawned, stripping off her jacket. She didn't think twice about climbing onto the bed with him.
"Well, it does rhyme with Ronnie," He smiled at her then on some sudden impulse reached over and squeezed her shoulder. Suddenly the mood changed, she moved closer to him, seeking comfort, seeking something. She buried her head in his side.
"It'll all be fine," She mumbled, not believing a word.
"You don't believe that," She looked up at him and their eyes met. Before either of them knew it they were kissing, hot and heavy, soft and slow all at the same time. His arm snaked around her back, pulling her. She responded by swiftly pulling his shirt up over his head. Her fingers grasped at his chest hair as their lips met again. They were so tired but they needed this and it didn't matter. One of Logan's hands slid from her back to caress her stomach, through her dress, then higher until he was cupping her breast. As they kissed again he pulled her on top of him and she ran her fingers through his hair, then slowly down his body.
As she fumbled with the buttons of his cargo pants his hands slid up her thighs and under her dress. It vaguely occurred to her that she'd never really done this before. It doesn't count if you don't remember it, right? She had no delusions about what was going to happen but she never thought for a second that there was any reason to stop it. Suddenly she felt her dress rising and she paused for a moment with his pants to help Logan pull her dress up and over her head.
Then the rest of their clothes joined the shirts and he was inside her and it hurt a bit but after a few tentative thrusts they got a rhythm going and it was nice as well and then OH… She didn't have much to go on, only Lilly's word, but it seemed like a pretty good first time to her. Afterwards they lay there facing each other. He was sweaty and so was she but it didn't matter and there was nothing that was going to make them want to move. They fell asleep, finally.
The next morning Veronica was still sticky but it was OK. She woke up first and just watched him for a while until his eyes fluttered open.
"G'morning," He mumbled groggily, stretching a bit.
"That was my first time," She whispered, not sure why she was telling him.
"I figured," He reached over and stroked her short blond hair. She reached out to touch his side, just to make sure he was really there, then cast her eyes down.
"We probable shouldn't do this again," She continued, still in her hushed tone, "Not until everything's…"
"Settled down?" He supplied. She nodded. Neither of them moved.
"We didn't use anything," He said suddenly.
She bit her lip and looked up at him, "I know." After a moment he leant over and kissed her forehead then rolled away and stood up.
"Showers then breakfast on the way to the airport?" He suggested. She smiled.
"We have to do something else first."
End of Chapter