Title: Very Nearly Deceiving Your Friends
Disclaimer: Not mine.
"So we're here." Logan points out, drumming his finger against the dashboard. I don't dare look his way in case he sees my hesitation.
I look up through my car windshield at the Sheriff's Department. It's an imposing building. It lets the criminals know that Neptune won't stand for their behaviour. And that was once true before a recall election - before Lamb.
The town is running low on good cops as well as decent guys and here I am getting ready to dump Leo, who is the pinnacle of both of those things, for Logan - who if I face the truth, is morally suspect at best.
"If you're not sure about us, you can back-out you know."
'Us' sounds like a foreign word, one I know, but haven't been able to put into an everyday conversation. I know being in a relationship with Logan isn't going to be easy. The girl I used to be wants me to turn back, call all this off and go for the safe boyfriend. That part of me is naïve enough to think I'd be happy that way. But I did the sensible thing before and I still wound up broken.
"It's not that."
"Do you want me to go with you?" I shift around in my seat to look at Logan. My current 'whatever' wants to come along on my breaking up with my soon to be ex-boyfriend? That doesn't sound good to me.
"It'll be best if you wait here." Whatever's happening between us came on sudden and maybe he's worried I'll change my mind. As much as I loved Lilly, she was always changeable. She swapped boys like they were her wardrobe.
"I'll be right back. Back, anyway." Logan mock salutes me, at least something about the boy still pisses me off; I need that normality. I close the door behind me.
- - - - - - - - - -
It's quiet. No criminals, lawyers or cops about, there's only Lamb who I don't think I'll count, seeing as I don't consider him to be as human as the rest of us.
He's sat behind the main desk playing on-line solitaire. For Lamb, life is a continuous coffee break - I think his personal motto is 'If you want a job done properly, get someone else to do it.'
"Well, if isn't Veronica Mars. Shouldn't you be in school?"
"Shouldn't you be out catching the criminals?"
"Duncan Kane's missing. I don't suppose you'd know anything about that?" he asks. I know lots about it. I accused him of his sister's murder and now he's disappeared. Lamb can't tell when I'm lying, but he's just continuously suspicious of me, so occasionally he gets it right.
"Yeah." I slap a hand against my forehead before smiling sweetly. "I killed him. I started off by poisoning him and when that didn't work, I shot him, clubbed him a little, rolled him in a carpet and then dumped him in a canal, just to make sure. Wait, no that was Rasputin. Maybe you're looking for the Romanov?" He narrows his eyes at me. "You can google that later, when you're not so busy."
Leo and Sacks hurl a boy of about fifteen through the door. He struggles and swears at them. Lamb gets up and strides towards Leo and Sacks, now that they've done the job for him.
"Is this where come in and take the credit from the heroes?"
Lamb ignores me and speaks to the boy with recognition. "Have you been dealing crystal meth again?" He's using the same tone of voice that he does when questioning me and he expects to get somewhere. He snatches a brown paper bag from under Sacks arm. "Is that what I'm going to find in your bag?"
"Actually that's my lunch." Sacks replies, taking it back with caution and placing it on the counter.
"We think he's working for the Fitzpatricks," Leo explains. "He swallowed the evidence before we could get to him."
My dad put a few of the Fitzpatricks in prison but there's plenty more of them. Look under any rock, you likely to find one of them committing some heinous crime or dealing out crystal meth.
Lamb stares the boy down, perhaps contemplating if he can reach down into the dealer's stomach and retrieve his evidence.
Lamb shoves the criminal forward in the direction of the cells.
"I guess you've got a weight on your hands. You better put a pot of coffee on." I call after him.
"So the Fitzpatricks up to their old games?" I ask Leo - Yes, I want to know what's going on. Is that so bad? I'm rummaging for information at the Sheriffs department before I'm once again no longer welcome.
I fiddle with my bag strap and Leo just stares at me.
"You've got that look."
"The look you get, when your about to say something not so pleasant or going to ask a not so pleasant favour that breaches my personal ethics."
"We can't date anymore." Band-aid-pulling-off quick break-up. Not perhaps the gentlest easing into separation, but the best for all involved, I hope.
"Uhhh, okay that, that's a real curve ball." I grimace, before plastering on a smile. Poor Leo or perhaps lucky Leo.
"Honestly, you're getting away lightly. I'm a mess. You see this right? I'm sorry though, truly."
"I'm not gett-, where's this coming from?" He scratched his head. I see the positive in e-mail. Dumping by e-mail is not a classy way to ditch a boyfriend, but it saves on the awkward pauses that go nowhere.
"I know it's sudden, and I could give you the whole 'it's me, not you' speech because it's true, but I'll spare you." Really I'm saying, spare me from having to hurt him. I don't know if I should I tell him about Logan. That I'm dumping him for the guy who on their first meeting, was drunk and pantless at my high school dance. That just can't lead anywhere good. Besides it's not like I'll be announcing to my dad or even Wallace any time soon, that Logan and I are dating.
"I'm really sorry." I repeat again.
- - - - - - - - - -
I feel like crap and then I see Logan fiddling with my car radio, pretending that he's not been obsessively watching the station all the time I was in it. I open the car and get in.
"Leo take it bad? Was there weeping?" He asks, not looking up.
"You remembered him?"
"The guy you were dancing with, when I was Tom Cruising it up. Ahhh. Booze tinted memories." I click my belt into place. "I spent the last two night's fantasy about being your bit on the side. I also needed someone to loathe. He fit the bill."
"I thought I was the only one you ever truly loathed." He leans forwards, kisses me on the cheek. He keeps smiling in my direction as I start up my car. This could work between us.
- - - - - - - - - -