Title: All it took
Author: ProlificP
Summary: What it took to stop Veronica's crucifixion.
Disclaimer: I do not own the characters. You know this already.

Note: I'd place this at episode 15 of the first season, 'Ruskie Business'. This isn't a plot sort of story, more like thinking. Also, my first VM fic, so dropping me a line would be much appreciated.

He just wanted her to cry. Just once, he wanted to see that Veronica Mars was capable of more than a hurt look and a brave face. That the sweet, innocent, small girl that had played in the big leagues with Lilly, Logan and Duncan was real. But she didn't cry.

He took away her friends. She bit her lip and picked another table. He called her a whore. She looked at Duncan once, wondering where his mind was, and walked away. He mocked her father, her mother and her dog. She slammed her locker door shut and went to class. He arranged body shots off of her princess attired virgin self. She lay there and feebly took it.

Where was Veronica? Where was the girl that blushed when Lilly mentioned sex? Who had that been, that angel that had eagerly blown out all of her candles at her sixteenth birthday, and cried at the end of Titanic? She couldn't be the same girl that silently accepted her new enemies and put one foot in front of another. She couldn't be Veronica. So it was okay to torment her, it was okay to make her silent. It was peachy when she cut her hair. Better when she humiliated Madison in front of the class. Excellent when she walked into school wearing cargo pants, body hugging tank top and a scowl. She wasn't Veronica anymore, not at all, so it was okay to torment her.

If only she had cried. Then she could be Veronica again. She could be Duncan's dream girl, his girlfriend's best friend. She was the reason Lilly had died. Without him. If she cried, it meant she was sorry. If she cried, it meant he was hurting the one person on the entire planet that Lilly had never betrayed. If she had cried, she would have hurt him. But she didn't use her biggest weapon, her tears, she didn't use them to turn him away. She just would not give those bits of satisfaction to the person who was supposed to have stayed her friend as she grieved. She hurt him because she wouldn't be Veronica.

So Veronica disappeared from Logan's life. She just wasn't there anymore. There was an effigy, this person that walked around and looked like her and carried her sins, but it wasn't the Veronica he knew. If that was her true self then she had been lying all along, so she did not matter to his life anymore.

She was not supposed to cry, not then, not after everything. He didn't want to be in the arms of the old Veronica, the one that assured him that Lilly would return to him eventually, the one that made Duncan smile and Logan smirk. She was supposed to disappear. Yet, in her arms, somehow he expected her to, because he felt his old friend's touch as she held him tightly against her. They were his tears though. She tasted his tears.

Two years. Veronica never gave him her tears. She smiled at him, threw out a verbal barb or eighty and told him he could go sexually assault himself. All it took to end the torture, all that time, was one bucket of salty water and ruined make-up, little fingers grasping at him and hitting him. She never gave it to him, because she wasn't Veronica Mars. That was okay, because he isn't Logan anymore either, so why shouldn't he give her his?