Title: Bad Scene and a Basement Show
Characters: Logan, Veronica, Keith, and a few original characters.
Warnings: Drug use, violence, and adult language.
Spoilers: Nothing specific, but to be safe, lets just say the whole series. Futurefic. AU.
Disclaimer: The only thing I own is the storyline and original characters. Rob Thomas, CW, and Warner Bros. own Veronica Mars.
2013 – Sunday, May 26th - 10:12pm
It had been three years – three years since he had last seen her loading her bare essentials into the trunk of her Dad's car, clasping a one-way ticket to Virginia in her hand. No goodbyes. No contact. Not even an email. Of all the reunion scenarios he'd played out in his head, no situation close to the present reality had captured his imagination. After all that time, his first image of Veronica Mars was a possibly high, most likely drunk, bone-thin women slouched over a whiskey stained bar, her tiny frame blending in with the dark, dingy Brooklyn, New York, pub he'd just entered. It always happens to the best and brightest.
Logan scanned the joint for someone who might be her likely acquaintance, friend, partner, or, dare-he-mention, boyfriend. When his search came up dry, his imagination moved into overdrive. What was a bright, young, intelligent FBI agent doing in a rundown Irish pub in Brooklyn? A pub fittingly named O'Malley's. As the only current occupant of the place, sans bartender, any possible undercover work she might be doing seemed pointless to Logan.
Had Veronica Mars finally sunken to the depths of depression? Had a dark, twisted turn of events created the downfall of a girl whose life's mission was to not become her mother's daughter? His attempt to avoid the most obvious answer didn't last long.
A deep, throaty laugh pulled Logan's attention to the far left corner of the pub. His surveillance skills had failed him the instant he'd spotted his ex. In a horseshoe booth, poorly lit by the dim, green-tinted lights, three heavy-set men had made themselves at home, away from the eyes of any casual pub-crawlers.
Drawn back to his original prediction, Logan surmised she was probably undercover on a case. He could hear her now: If you want answers, you have to get in close, gritted out with that closed-off expression she was so inclined to use when she was put in a position of moral ambiguity, or when her actions were questioned. Frequently, when he'd been the one to question her decisions, she'd simply brushed him off with the same look.
Logan needed to stop speculating; he needed to collect facts. Details. Information. Everything required to explain his current predicament and find out why Veronica was hanging out in one of the hot spots highlighted in the files he'd reviewed the night before.
Highlighted was putting it lightly. Underlined, circled, printed in bold, and then highlighted was more like it. If Veronica was still FBI, why was the DEA targeting the same ring? Most importantly, why hadn't he been informed? The selfish bastard inside him hoped he and Veronica were working separate cases. She'd upstaged him far too often, and this investigation was Logan's first chance to prove himself worthy. He wasn't going to let anything or anyone prevent him from his glory moment. Up until two years ago, he'd never cared about other people's opinions of him, but a lot had changed in that short space of time. Evidence of the change was sitting, whiskey in hand, only ten feet ahead.
Taking a seat as far away from her as possible, but making sure he could see her every move from the corner of his eye, he made himself discrete, blending into a mahogany booth. Despite keeping one eye fixed on his ex, and another firmly set on the three dark haired figures in the corner, Logan had a feeling tonight's takings at O'Malley's wouldn't be enough to pay the bartender's rent, never mind keep the pub's doors open for business.
In the twenty minutes he had been in the pub, not a single soul had walked through the double doors, which further sparked his suspicions about the owner's means of income. Predicting a slow night ahead, Logan passed the time by trying to fill in the three year gap in Ronnie's life between Hearst graduation and the present.
About ready to leave, after an almost-pointless night of surveillance, the sound of a stool being pushed back and away from the bar caused Logan to raise his eyes. Veronica was leaving. Sliding a twenty across the bar, her small stature forced her to bounce down from the tall chair. Movement equaled change. Logan's lungs didn't agree with change, and his nerves started to restrict his breathing. The sudden shift heightened his senses. A tall, lanky man, dressed in a 70s-style shirt resembling his dead grandma Lester's curtains, had entered the pub through the back hallway. To Logan's surprise, after making his way over to the inebriated men in the corner, and whispering quickly in the largest one's ear, the stranger met up with Veronica halfway down the bar.
No. Please. Not now. Not again. Of course she was involved. Why had he even bothered to question it? It may not have been a surprise, but what happened next definitely captured his attention. Lifting onto the tips of her toes, Veronica reached up to kiss the stranger on the lips, allowing his arms to circle her waist and degradingly grab her ass.
Logan tried to disregard the gesture. Right now, he had no choice but to sit back and wait as the newcomer led a stumbling Veronica out the back, and out of sight.
Two years as a rookie DEA agent, and Logan Echolls knew all the signs of drug addiction, from overwhelming anxiety to panic attacks and weight loss, even a simple runny nose kicked his blow-addiction radar into gear. Long before his current gig as a responsible, tax-paying employee, Logan had witnessed his fare share of drug-induced episodes. But nothing could've prepared him for the sight only two feet to his right, curled up on an inappropriately pure white couch. Her skin as pale as snow, eyes unfocused and glazed over, Veronica's posture screamed anxiety, shame, and submission. Any attempt to hide her vulnerable state from Logan had failed.
They'd been sitting in silence for a good six minutes now. The only sound in the room came from a house party across the street. If he was going to take advantage of his upper hand and get answers anytime soon, Logan had to speak up. Although it had yet to happen, he could lose control of the situation at any moment, and Veronica could kick him out of her apartment. He wouldn't put it past her to do it without giving him so much as a clue about her business in Brooklyn, or why her apartment smelled less like lavender and vanilla and more like stale beer and leftover pizza. He also knew the silence in the room had not been caused merely by the shock of running into each other after so long, but also by the circumstances of the chance meeting. He just couldn't figure out what to ask or where to start, and more importantly, how to ask the right questions to get her to tell him the truth.
Not only was Logan anxious, but also there was little in the tiny room to divert his attention. Other than the obvious TV, couch, and coffee table, the contents of Veronica's living room consisted of a shelf with a few scattered books, a work desk, bare apart from the essentials, and a healthy bonsai tree perched on a table near a small window.
Once, back home in San Francisco, upon the advise of a concerned friend, Logan had bought himself a bonsai tree. He'd been told maintaining a bonsai tree required intense time and effort, but the attention the plant needed was supposed to distract him, keep him from getting lost in his job. Unfortunately, his tree died after a mere two weeks of care. The death didn't really affect him because, at the time, he was close to a promotion, a promotion that would be much more fulfilling than the survival of a stupid potted plant. Maybe Veronica had the plant for the same reason. Maybe she was working herself to the bone, getting lost in her investigations.
Although he had only experienced the intensity of covert undercover work from a distance, Logan knew where the line was supposed to be drawn between work and play. There were those who got involved, but sometimes, some people got too caught up, denying the effect it has on their lifeand those around them. Eyes fixated on the trembling of her brittle hands, Logan had a horrible feeling - Veronica was in denial.