Author's Notes: This story takes place during the first episode of season two of 'Veronica Mars' called 'Normal is the Watchword'. It's my take on what should have happened instead of having Veronica end up with dull and boring Duncan. Written June 2006.

Working it Out

Veronica and Logan had been dating for two months. Quite a bit had happened in that time. Logan had spent a little time in jail, and a lot of time in court with his lawyers making sure he wasn't going to trial for Felix's murder. It had paid off, because the judge had decided there wasn't enough evidence for a trial. Then after that, Logan was in summer school finishing the things he wasn't able to finish at the end of his junior year because of the jail time and time in court. Veronica had been spending all of her time working, and making as much money as she could to put away for college. But they still found time to see each other. She made a point of going to the school to eat lunch with Logan as often as possible.

But after Logan had gotten out of his murder charge, the struggles between the rich and poor got worse in Neptune. And instead of trying to defuse the situation, Logan egged people on in various ways, no matter how many times Veronica told him to stop.

But then it had happened, the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back. Logan and his friends had torched the public pool on Friday night, and Veronica knew something had to change. It was now Saturday, and she didn't have to work. Her father had just left, and was on his way out of town for the weekend. She invited Logan over to talk.

Veronica was pacing, nervously thinking about what to say when she heard the doorbell. She went and opened the door to find Logan smiling at her. He said, "So I hear someone is out of town right now."

He leaned in for a kiss, but Veronica leaned back away from it. Logan knew instantly something was wrong, and his smile went away. He said, "What is it?"

Veronica shut the door, and took his hand. She led him over to the couch and said, "We need to talk."

Logan panicked at those words. He tried to hide it by saying with false cheer, "I can think of a hundred better things to do with our time."

Veronica sat on the couch, and Logan perched on the arm, too nervous and unsure to sit right next to her like he normally would. Veronica looked up at him with a sad pleading expression and said, "I kept thinking that if I just stuck by you, you'd get past this, and you'd be you again."

Logan felt like someone had punched him in the chest, and he couldn't breath. He knew she must have heard about the pool. He said quietly with disbelief in his voice, "You're breaking up with me?"

Veronica tried to make him understand. "I can't stay with you. Not with you and your toadies cruising around at night and hatching plans, refusing to let everything get back to normal. Someone's gonna get killed Logan."

Logan was getting visibly agitated. He said a little loudly, "Someone already has! Did you forget that already? And most of the people in this town think that I did it. Those people you call toadies are my friends, they've got my back!"

Veronica knew it was harsh, but she had to make him understand how she saw what he was doing. "It's not about protection Logan, it's about pride. And the thing that I can't stand, is that I'm pretty sure there's a part of you that's having fun with this."

Logan felt his stomach twisting. He knew she was right and it made him angry. He had enjoyed torching the pool. But now he was angry with himself for not thinking about how Veronica would look at it. He was too angry about the whole situation to deal. He yelled out, "Fun?! Fun?!"

He was too angry to sit still. He got up and in a burst of anger knocked over the lamp that was next to the couch and broke it. Veronica was startled and a little scared. Logan was a lot bigger then her and she knew with his family history, that anger usually brought on violence. Logan spun back on Veronica and yelled, "My Mom is dead! My girlfriend is dead! My Dad is a murderer! And the only person I still care about is dumping me! You think I'm having fun? Answer me!"

Veronica was getting more and more nervous with him shouting at her and looming over her. Veronica wasn't used to someone showing anger like this. Her father almost never yelled, and certainly never broke things, and when she had dated Duncan he had never been anything but sweet to her, even when they broke up. She thought that maybe she should have done this when her father was around. She said quietly, "You need to calm down."

Logan took a good look at her and noticed her eyes were darting over towards the door like she was looking for an escape. He had seen that look on her face before, but never because of him. She was scared. He turned around and took a deep breath to try and calm down. He walked a few feet away and sat down backwards on one of the kitchen chairs resting his arms on the top of the chair back. He said, "Okay I'm calm."

Veronica was more relieved then she would like to admit. She said, "Logan, I…. You know that I…." She couldn't say the words, even though he already had. Because if she gave him the words, he could hurt her with them later. Trust was hard for Veronica. Instead she said, "I don't want to break up with you, I just don't see another option. I don't condone what you did, and you don't show any signs of remorse. I've told you more then once to stop antagonizing the situation, but you won't listen, and you and your… buddies seem to be escalating the level of the pranks every time."

Logan said with disdain, "They're not 'pranks' Veronica, we're sending them a message."

"Why don't you just hold up a big sign saying 'I'm an ass.'? It would be less illegal."

"So now I'm an ass? That's just great. Have you forgotten that I didn't start this? They did! They're the ones who had tried, convicted, and sentenced me for Lily's murder, and then took justice into their own hands. Did you forget what I looked like when I came to you that night? I didn't go looking for trouble, it came looking for me."

Veronica glared at him and said, "I see. And what would you have done if you had found out that Weevil had killed Lily?"

Logan couldn't keep eye contact. He knew he would have done the same if not worse if the tables were turned. Veronica said, "I'm sorry, but I just can't be with you if I can't trust you not to do these kinds of things. I know that deep down inside you there's a good person Logan. When he's ready to take center stage, give me a call."

Logan looked down for a few minutes and then said, "Okay, you win. I promise I'll stop."

Veronica shook her head. "You've said that before. I don't believe you anymore. I need something more concrete this time."

Logan looked up at her with disbelief. "I've never promised you before. I've listened and nodded when you lectured me about 'antagonizing' the poor, and I've agreed with you that I should stop, but I've never said I would."

Veronica looked angry herself now; "You shouldn't have to promise Logan. You shouldn't just nod and pretend to agree with me when you don't! How can I trust you when you do that?"

Logan shook his head. "Trust? I don't think you've ever really trusted me. No matter what I do, or how many times I put myself on the line for you, you still don't trust me."

Veronica tried to tell him that she did, but the words wouldn't come. Logan said, "Is there anything I can do to convince you I'm trustworthy? Anything that I can say to make this better?"

Veronica said, "Go a week without doing anything, and I mean anything at all, to antagonize the PCHers or anyone else who isn't an '09er, and we can talk again."

Logan stood up and headed for the door. He glared back at her and said, "You're asking too much Veronica. If you're not gonna trust me either way, then what's the point?"

Logan went out and slammed the door behind him. He started walking to his car while still looking behind him at the closed door and muttered under his breath, "Might as well just hit me. At least that's a direct attack."

Logan walked right into Keith. Logan jumped back a little startled, and Keith put a hand on Logan's arm to steady him. Keith gave him a smile. Logan said, "I thought you were gone for the weekend."

"I forgot something, and had to come back."

Keith could tell that Logan was really unhappy, and he had heard what he had said. Keith asked, "Has my daughter been attacking you indirectly?"

Logan got bright red when he realized Keith had heard him and mumbled, "I gotta go."

Logan stepped around Keith, and almost ran to his Hummer.

Keith watched him drive away, and went in to see how Veronica was doing. He found her sitting on the couch crying with her head in her hands. When she heard the door, she thought it was Logan, and quickly wiped at her face ready to pretend she hadn't been crying. When she saw it was her dad, her face crumbled again and she walked over to him for a hug while she cried. He said, "Hey now, what's all this about? I'm gone for less then half an hour and you two have a huge fight?"

Keith held her close and waited for her to calm down. As he was waiting, his eyes fell on the broken lamp on the floor, and his temper started to rise thinking about what Logan might have done. His voice was less soft this time when he said, "What happened?"

Veronica said, "We broke up."

Keith let go of her, and put both his hands on the sides of her face. He wiped the tears away from her cheeks looking for any marks while he did it. He said, "Did he hurt you?"

Veronica shook her head no. He said, "How did the lamp get broke?"

Veronica turned back around to see it. She went to get a tissue to blow her nose with, and tried to stop crying so she could tell him about it. She knew what her dad would have to say about what Logan had done, both to the pool and to the lamp, and it wouldn't be good. When she was calm enough she said, "Logan and his friends keep picking on everyone who's not an 09er, even when I'm around, and I've asked him to stop more then once. So today I called him and asked him to come over so I could break up with him. He was really upset when I told him, and as he was backing away from me, he bumped into the end table and the lamp fell over and broke. He asked me what he could do to keep us together, and I told him that I wanted him to stop picking on other kids. He said he couldn't do that, and walked out."

Keith was a little suspicious of this after hearing what Logan had said. He said, "Is that everything?"

Veronica looked away and said quietly, "Not exactly. He did agree to stop, but I told him I didn't believe him. He accused me of not trusting him before he left."

Keith put an arm around her shoulders and said, "Do you trust him?"

"Yes… No…. I don't know. I want to."

Keith went over and started picking up pieces of the broken lamp. Veronica went to get the garbage for him to put the pieces into. Keith thought about it for a little while and then looked at Veronica when he said, "I know that after your mother…… I know it's hard for you to trust people sweetheart. And I can't say if Logan is worthy of your trust or not, but someday someone will be, and if you want a relationship to work, you'll have to trust your partner."

Veronica said, "And that worked out so well for you?"

Keith gave her a seriously displeased look and said, "I don't deserve that."

Veronica looked down ashamed and said, "You're right. I'm sorry."

Keith dropped the last of the broken lamp pieces in the trash and said, "Apology accepted."

Keith gave her a little kiss on the forehead and said, "For what it's worth, Logan was really upset too. He was mumbling something about how you should hit him because at least that would be a direct attack."

Veronica looked like she might cry again when Keith said that. He said, "It was just a metaphor honey. I don't think he really believes you attacked him. He was just hurt by your lack of trust."

She shook her head and said, "No it's not that, it's….."

She was about to say 'it's that he is relating what I did to him to the things his father has done to him.', but she trailed off because she knew Logan was deeply ashamed of the fact that his father beat him, and didn't want anyone knowing. She probably still wouldn't know if Trina hadn't spilled the beans that day at the hotel. Veronica had tried to talk to Logan about it once, but it hadn't gone well.

Keith said, "It's what?"

Veronica put the trash away and said, "Nothing."

Keith sighed and said, "Come on Veronica, if you can't trust your old man, then who can you trust?"

Veronica thought about that for a second and then said, "I'm sure you're right that Logan was hurt because I don't trust him the same way he trusts me, but it's more then that. I think Logan was saying that if I'm gonna attack him, I should just hit him the way his father does."

The room was quiet for a few seconds and then Keith said, "Aaron hits him?"

Veronica looked away and nodded. Keith went to the couch and sat down. He said, "Well, Logan can be kind of difficult. What do you mean exactly by hitting?"

Veronica couldn't believe her father had said that. She said with anger, "What do you think I mean Dad? Cigarette burns, broken noses, finger size bruises on his arm, belt marks on his back."

Keith's stomach turned and he muttered, "Damn. If I had known..…"

Veronica was still angry and said, "What did you mean before about Logan being difficult. There isn't any kind of hitting that would be okay, no matter what Logan has done."

Keith looked over at Veronica. He patted the couch beside him and said, "Come here a second."

She looked indignant with her arms crossed and a glare on her face, but she went over and sat next to Keith anyway. He put his arm around her shoulders and said, "You've always been such a good kid, my pride and joy. I think I've only grounded you twice ever right?"

She nodded in agreement. Keith continued, "But not all kids are like you honey. I know I wasn't. Some kids need more then that to keep them in line."

"I can't believe you're saying this! Aaron is…."

Keith cut her off, "Disgusting. It's disgusting what he did, and that's not what I'm talking about."

Veronica was somewhat more calm and said, "Then what are you talking about?"

"Did I ever tell you what your grandpa did to me the one and only time I snuck out of the house in the middle of the night?"

Veronica shook her head no. Keith said, "He spanked me."

"Grandpa? No way!"

Keith nodded his head and said, "And that wasn't the only time either. I think it was about five times when I was really little, and then three times when I was a teenager."

"A teenager like thirteen?"

Keith sighed and said, "No, like sixteen and seventeen."

"Really? Grandpa did this? The same sweet man who read me 'Little Red Riding Hood' eight times in one day, actually spanked you when you were my age."

Keith nodded, "Yep, and you know what else?"

Veronica sounded slightly shell shocked and said, "I couldn't even guess."

"I'm glad he did. In fact I love him more for it. He was right, and I was wrong, and if he hadn't done it, I wouldn't be the man I am today."

Veronica just sat there not knowing what to say. Keith patted her shoulder and said, "But your Grandpa did it because he loved me, and was trying to help me be a better man, not out of anger or hate. I never questioned his love for me, even when he was doing it. So when you said Aaron 'hit' Logan I thought maybe he had spanked him. Obviously that isn't the case and doesn't apply."

Keith looked at the clock and cringed. He said, "I have to get going, or I'm going to miss my plane. Are you gonna be okay here by yourself?"

Veronica looked at the clock and knew Keith was late as it was. She said, "Why are you back here anyway? You should be on your way to Idaho to get that guy."

"I know, but I forgot my laptop."

Veronica saw it by the door where he had left it. She had been so caught up in her own stuff that morning, that she had missed it too. She smiled at him and said, "I'm gonna be fine Dad. Backup is here, and I'm gonna be spending most of my time at work anyway."

Keith gave her a quick hug and kiss and said, "Okay then, I'll see you on Monday. You call me if you need anything."

Veronica nodded and watched him go. She sat there thinking about what her father had told her. She found it hard to believe. She had seen her father and her grandfather together, and they seemed to love each other, and always gave each other a hug when they saw one another. But how could her father be okay with his own father hitting him? Veronica couldn't picture herself being okay with it.

Then she thought about some of the times she had lied to her father about the things she had done, and her face got a little red as she realized that she probably would accept it if he thought she had screwed up badly enough to get spanked. And she knew it was because she never had to question his love for her. This made her feel even worse for Logan, because she didn't think he had ever felt that way about someone. Maybe with his mother, but she was gone, and Veronica doubted that his mother had been completely oblivious to the abuse going on in her house, so Logan would have had to question her love at some point.

Veronica spent most of the afternoon hanging out around the house just thinking about Logan, her relationship with him, trust, and love.

Logan was angry and depressed all at the same time. He had gone over to Lucky's house to get some beer, but Lucky had been gone. He knew there was no alcohol in his house, because he had raided the liquor cabinets the day he had been allowed to go home from jail. He thought about going over to Dick's house, but he didn't want to have to listen to him. So he ended up going home, and playing video games for most of the morning while thinking about the fact that he had been dumped.

Three hours later he already missed her. He hated that he wanted her so badly, but he did. He didn't just want to get into her pants either. Sure he wanted that, but even more than that, he wanted her to trust him and love him the way he had grown to love her. He tossed his game controls onto the floor and lay back on the couch thinking about her. He wanted to make it right with her no matter what it took. He took a deep breath and decided he would do his best to stop pushing at the PCHers, even if Dick was gonna say he was pussy whipped without the pussy.

He reached out to pick up his cell phone, but it rang before he could pick it up. He looked and saw Veronica's number. He was nervous, but answered, "Hello?"

Veronica said, "I've been thinking…."

"And?"

"You're right."

"About what?"

"Can you come over so we can talk?"

"Sure. I'll be right there."

He hung up and starred at his phone for a few seconds wondering what would greet him at Veronica's house. He thought she sounded more open to hearing his side of things, and she had said he was right about something. He got in his car and drove to her house.

Veronica was nervously pacing for the second time that day. She heard a soft knock on the door, and went to open it. He gave her a nervous and questioning look. She opened the door wider and said, "Come in."

He went in, and stood by the kitchen counter. Veronica sat down at the kitchen table and said, "Have a seat."

He sat and said, "So what am I right about."

She looked at him and said, "I don't trust you."

He looked down and felt like crying. Veronica said, "That day when your dad threw you a surprise birthday party, you were so sweet holding out your hand for me and declaring to everyone that I was your girlfriend even though you knew people wouldn't approve. And then when I found the video camera in the room I assumed you had put me in that room just so you could video us. That shows a certain lack of trust. And then I was more then ready to jump to the conclusion that you had killed Lily, even after I had seen you and her together enough times to know you couldn't have done it. So I guess what I'm trying to say is I'm sorry."

Logan looked up for the first time during the speech. Veronica looked away and said, "I know you've proven to me more then once that I should be able to trust you, and the problem isn't you, it's me. With my mom….. doing what she did, and the line of work my father is in…. I just….."

Logan put his hand over hers and said, "I know. It's okay."

Veronica shook her head. "It's not okay. I'm going to try harder, and when you think I'm not giving you the benefit of the doubt, try to be patient, and point it out to me nicely."

Logan smiled at her and said, "Okay, I will."

Veronica smiled too. Then she said, "There's something I should have told you a few weeks ago, but I haven't had the courage to do it until right now."

Logan felt his heart rate go up. He had told her he was falling in love with her, and she had blown it off telling him he just wanted to get to third base. She looked at him and said, "Logan I….."

She looked away and said, "You remember when you said….. I mean I think I'm falling…. I mean, I think…..I love you too."

Logan had a soft smile of love on his face, seeing how hard it was for her, and knowing what it meant for her to say it. He leaned over the table and kissed the top of her head. He sat back down and said, "I love you too, Veronica."

She looked over at him a little nervously. He smiled encouragingly. He raised his eyebrows and his smile turned into a bit of a leer as he said, "If you wanted to move over to the couch I could show you how much."

Veronica pulled her hand away from his and said, "We're not done talking yet."

Logan sighed not wanting to bring up what he had done to the pool. "Really? Because it seems like we've gone over the important parts. Everything else will work itself out."

"No, Logan. I still think what you did to the pool was wrong. And I know you would try hard to keep your word and stop antagonizing the PCHers. But I also know you, and three days from now you'll loose your temper and do something stupid."

Logan sat back and crossed his arms said, "What was it you were just saying about trust?"

Veronica nodded, "Yeah I know. So I'm telling you right now that I need something more then words to help me believe you are going to work on changing."

Logan gave her a small nod and said, "Okay, so what do you want me to do?"

Veronica didn't have nearly as much trouble saying, "I want you to let me spank you."

Logan just stared at her for a few seconds. Then he laughed loudly for a few seconds and eventually said, "You really had me going there for a second. You're so lucky Dick isn't here to comment on that line."

Veronica had thought about it for a long time, and she thought if she could get Logan to agree to it, two things would happen. She would trust him more for letting her do it, and he would realize that she was serious about what she had said and would try even harder to stop his nefarious activities. She didn't really question his love for her, and expected that he would agree to it in time. She looked at him without humor and said, "I'm not joking."

He looked at her confused for a few seconds. Then he got pissed and stood up. He said, "Do you really think that I'd just sit by and let someone beat me when you know what my father has done in the past? No one is ever going to make me feel that way again, and if you really loved me like you just said you did, you wouldn't be asking me to do it."

Veronica stayed where she was and said, "I'm not going to beat you, I'm going to spank you. And I'm going to do it because I love you."

Logan said, "No."

He quickly walked out the door and slammed it for a second time that day. He stormed off to his Hummer and drove away. Veronica sat there and wondered if she had just lost him for good. But she knew that just loving each other wasn't enough to put their relationship back on the right track.

Logan drove around the city with his emotions in turmoil. Eventually he went to Dick's house, just because he wanted a distraction. He knocked on the door and Beaver answered the door. Logan said, "Is Dick here?"

Beaver opened the door wider and said, "He's out tanning by the pool."

Logan nodded and walked towards the back. Dick looked over and said, "Hey man, I thought you were spending the day with Ronnie."

"I was but she's being a bitch."

Dick was a little surprised that Logan said anything bad about Veronica at all. He said, "At least Lily used to put out. I don't see why you put up with this one."

Logan shook his head and realized he should have kept his mouth shut. He said, "Shut up Dick. I don't want your opinion."

Dick shrugged and said, "Dad's at the office today, how about a beer?"

"Yes please."

They spent the afternoon drinking and playing video games, and Logan drove home after Dick's dad came home. He went into his father's big empty house and wandered around looking at some of the pictures on the walls. He had tried to forget about the things Veronica had said to him, but he hadn't been able to. He looked at some pictures of his father and thought about some of the times he had beaten him. He felt anger pulsing through him as he remembered how scared he used to be when his father was standing over him yelling. He suddenly had an image of Veronica's face when he was standing over her yelling.

He sighed and walked into his room and flopped on his bed. He thought for a second about their size difference, and how much smaller she was. He could lift her without much effort at all. Suddenly the thought of her spanking him didn't seem so threatening, and in fact seemed pretty ridiculous. He tried to imagine him over her lap, but it didn't work. His mind wandered to her over his lap, and he had to smile at that thought. Soon his mind had her sitting on his lap, and all thoughts of spanking went out of his head as he reached down to jerk himself off. Having a girlfriend who didn't put out was tough for Logan after being with Lily, but he tried not to push Veronica into anything she wasn't ready for.

A while later Logan ordered himself some pizza for dinner. He sat alone and thought again about Veronica. He didn't want to loose her, because he really had fallen in love with her, and she was good for him. She was smart, and pretty, and made him laugh. But he just couldn't make himself go over there and say 'go ahead and hit me'.

Logan went to bed early, and tossed and turned all night long.

Sunday morning Veronica got herself ready and went to work. She had a long shift, and was somewhat glad to have something to do to keep herself busy. She was worried that Logan hadn't called, and thought maybe she had miscalculated and lost Logan for good.

Then at ten am he showed up. She thought he looked like hell. She went over to him with a neutral look on her face and said, "Feel free to seat yourself, and I'll get you a menu."

He wasn't in the mood to joke around. He simply said, "I'll let you do it."

She looked at him for a second to make sure he was serious. She reached up and gave him a hug and whispered in his ear, "I get off work at five. Be at my house at seven."

He hugged her back and picked her up off her feet for a second. He put her down and walked out without another word. She could tell he was having trouble coming to terms with the fact that he wanted to keep her so badly that he was going to let her hit him.

It was a long day at work, and she was very happy to leave when her shift was done. She went home, took the dog for a walk, took a shower, put on her usual tee shirt and jeans, and waited for him. As she was sitting there, she thought about exactly what she was going to do. She looked at her hand and thought about how big Logan was compared to her. She went to the bathroom and looked around in the drawers until she found a plastic hairbrush with a round flat back. She put it on the kitchen counter and wondered where she should have him stand. She didn't think he would fit over her lap, and even if he did, she thought he might actually like being there no matter what she was doing to him. She decided the table would work, and then waited for him to arrive.

Logan walked out of the restaurant into the sun, and couldn't believe what he had just agreed to. But he hadn't slept well, and he woke up thinking he just had to do it. He'd been hit enough times in his life that he knew that it would hurt and be awful, but he also knew he'd get through it and be okay a few days later when the bruises healed. He shook his head and went to the mall to look at computer games for a while trying to distract himself.

When he got tired of that, he went to the liquor store, but got tossed out when they didn't like the looks of his fake ID. As he was walking to his car he saw two PCHers standing on the corner. He thought about Veronica and walked straight to his car without taunting them, even though they yelled out at him "Kill anyone today rich boy?"

He spend the rest of the day at his house watching the clock and trying to get interested in the new computer game he had bought. He left his house early and parked a few blocks away from Veronica's house looking at his watch again and again. It was nerve wracking.

At exactly six fifty-eight according to Veronica's clock the doorbell rang. She went over and saw Logan standing there looking kind of nervous. She opened the door wider and he came in. She shut the door and leaned against it. She said, "What changed your mind?"

He walked over to her and kissed her on the mouth. She couldn't stop herself from kissing back. He broke away and said, "That."

She stood there breathing for a second and said, "Right."

He went in for another kiss, but she turned her head. She said, "No. Spanking first."

Logan sighed and said, "Right."

He stepped back and said, "What do you want me to do?"

She walked into the room and said, "Lean over the kitchen table."

He gave her a look and said, "After we're done here, things are going to go back to the way they were right? Except that you're going to try trusting me, and I'm going to try being a better person to the low life poor people in town."

She gave him a glare to let him know she didn't think it was funny. She said, "Yes, except I hope that once we're done, you will think twice about calling us low life poor people."

He rolled his eyes, "You know I didn't mean you."

She said, "Over the table."

He took a deep breath and leaned down over the table. He rested his entire chest on the table, and grabbed a hold of the edge of the table on the opposite side. He knew from experience that it was better to have something to hold onto to keep his hands out of the way. His father had accidentally broken Logan's little finger once when he reached his hand back to cover his butt.

Veronica looked at him lying there waiting, and she knew she had been wrong not to trust him in the past. She walked over to him and put one hand on his lower back. She rubbed it a little bit and said, "I do love you Logan."

He was surprised by both the touch and by the words, which seemed to come easier this time. He looked back at her. She looked at him too and said, "And I do trust you. Do you trust me too?"

He said, "I wouldn't be here if I didn't."

She gave him a smile and then looked at his rear. He turned his head back to the front and waited. She lifted her hand high and brought it down on the left side of his ass over the pocket of his jeans. She did the same on the right, and then set up a rhythm of spanks. Logan just lay there with disbelief. He wasn't sure what he had been expecting, but this wasn't it. It didn't even hurt per say; it was just kind of making him warm. He kind of smiled to himself and thought, 'You're a dumb ass Logan. You should have let her do this that first night instead of worrying over it for days. Of course it's not gonna hurt, she's tiny.'

He looked back over his shoulder at her. She was staring at his ass with a look of concentration and determination. He thought it was really cute and smiled. She chose that moment to look over at him. She gave him a glare and said, "You don't seem to be feeling this."

He said with a hint of lust, "Oh I'm feeling it all right."

She said with exasperation, "Maybe your pants should come down."

He gave her a smirk. "Sorry sweetie, but you don't get to see my ass until I get to see yours."

She glared even more and said, "Stay there."

He said, "Sure thing." And let go of the other side of the table. He put his elbows on the table instead and got comfortable. She came back holding the hairbrush and Logan snickered. She looked at him and said, "You think this is funny?"

He shook his head and laughed a little as he said, "I'm sorry, but….It's pink."

She put her hand back on his lower back and said, "Try not to make a joke about this Logan, I'm serious here. I want you to think about why I'm doing this."

Logan felt the first whack with the brush, and gave a little grunt. It stung a little bit, but he could tolerate it. It was nothing like the white-hot pain of belt to bare skin. He lay there still thinking more about how happy he was it didn't really hurt then about why it was happening. Veronica said, "Tell me why I'm doing this."

Logan shook his head a little trying to keep from laughing. "Hmm, let's see. I think it was because you think I'm an asshole."

Veronica kept smacking him and said, "I used to think you were, but not for a long time now. After I spent time with you trying to find out what had happened to your mom I started to see the real you. The boy who stood on my porch with tears in his eyes and asked for my help. The boy who broke down in the hotel lobby when he found out his mom was really gone."

Logan wasn't smiling at all now. He felt his throat tighten as he thought about his mother, and all the things Veronica had done to help find her. Especially since she had ripped up the check when it was all done. And as the spanking continued, she started going over areas she had already hit once with the brush, which produced something more then a slight sting.

Veronica continued. "The boy who came to my rescue when he thought the guy who turned out to be a cop was going to hurt me. The boy who held my hand in front of all his friends even though he knew they wouldn't approve. The boy who forgave me more then once for not trusting him. The boy who was understanding about what happened to me at that party, and even confessed and apologized for his part in it. The boy who doesn't pressure me to have sex since he knows I'm not ready. The boy who's here letting me do this. That's the real you Logan. That's the person I love. That boy wouldn't set fire to a public pool out of spite. Do you really think you hurt those PCHers with that stunt? Most of the people who go to that pool are grandparents and little kids. What do you have to say for yourself?"

Logan's emotions were all over the place listening to her, and he felt the tears going down his face when she told him she loved him again. He didn't understand it. Sure he would cry when his father beat him, but that was different. That just made him angry. He wasn't in enough pain to cry from what she was doing, but her words had gotten to him, and now as he thought about what he had done, he found some shame in it through her eyes. He realized the way she looked at him, and who she wanted him to be, and for the fist time thought maybe it was who he wanted himself to be as well.

Veronica stopped spanking, a little out of breath from all the work, but kept her hand on his back and waited for an answer. Then she saw his shoulders and heard a soft sob come out of him, and realized he was crying. She put the brush down on the table and pulled slightly on his arm. He stood up but kept his face away from her. She pulled him towards the kitchen counter, and he followed. She climbed up on a chair and sat down on the kitchen counter so that her upper body was actually slightly taller then his for the moment, and pulled him into a hug.

Logan stood there next to the counter and rested his head on her chest. She wrapped her arms around his shoulders, and he wrapped his arms around her waist. She rubbed his back and waited while he cried. After a few seconds she said, "It's okay Logan. I still love you, and I forgive you. I know you're a good person, and I know you're gonna try hard to be even better."

Her words just made him cry more. She wrapped her legs around his waist and just kept murmuring that she loved him and forgave him.

It took a long time, but eventually Logan was able to get out a very quiet, "I'm sorry."

She hugged him harder and said, "I know, and it's gonna be alright."

He hugged her tight and then let go. He wiped at his face and said, "I need some Kleenex or something."

She pointed to the box on the other end of the counter. He walked over and got a few, and blew his nose a couple of times. When he was done he turned back around and looked in her general direction but didn't make eye contact. She jumped down off the counter and walked over to him. She put a hand on his arm and said, "Are you in a lot of pain? I have some aspirin or some Tylenol if you need something."

He looked down at her, and could tell she was genuinely concerned. He shook his head. "I'm fine."

"Is that some kind of macho guy crap, or are you really okay?"

He gave her a little smile and said, "Honestly?…. I'm a little bit sore, but it doesn't really hurt."

She frowned and said, "But you were crying."

Logan looked away. "Because of what you said, not because of what you did."

"Oh."

He looked back at her and said, "Don't look so disappointed Veronica. It worked."

"How can you say it worked if you can't even feel it now?"

He said, "I can feel it, there just isn't any sharp pain. Come lay on the couch with me?"

She let him take her hand and lead her over there. He lay on his back with his head on the arm of the couch, and pulled her down to lay on top of him. She snuggled up and rested her head on his shoulder. He wrapped his arms around her. He took a few seconds to collect his thoughts and then said, "My father has 'spanked' me and beaten me many times, but it has never worked. Not even once. My father taught me to avoid him, and to try and keep things from him. He taught me to be afraid of him. He taught me to respect money more then people. And mostly he taught me that I was a useless, good for nothing son who deserved anything bad that happened to me."

"But you just made me want to be a better person. You made me regret what I had done, not because you were angry with me, or because you gave me some pain. But because you thought better of me then I thought of myself. I don't want to hide things from you or avoid you because of what you did. And you're trying to teach me to have respect for a wider range of people. That's why I think it worked."

They were quite for a little while and Veronica said, "I love you."

He smiled and said, "So you've said."

"I was so afraid to tell you. Worried that you'd use it to hurt me later if we broke up."

Logan kissed the top of her head and said, "I'm really glad you trusted me enough to tell me."

"Me too."

They lay there quietly for a few minutes, and soon Logan could tell that Veronica was asleep. He realized her day must have been just as stressful as his was, and kept still so she could sleep. After lying in one spot for about ten minutes his butt was complaining slightly. He slowly shifted a little so he was more on his side and less on his back. He got comfortable, and closed his eyes. Soon he was asleep as well.

Keith got home around midnight and was surprised to find his door unlocked. He walked in and saw Logan and Veronica snuggled up together on the couch. He raised an eyebrow at that, not liking it much. But since they both had all their clothes on, he decided not to make a fuss about it. He shut the door quietly and snuck into his room to go to sleep himself, but he left his door open, and kept an ear out for any noises that might be going on in the other room.

The next morning Veronica woke up early. She opened her eyes and saw she was in Logan's arms. She smiled at him and wiggled a little to stretch. Logan woke up too and saw her. He smiled and then as he started to stretch he said, "Ow!"

She looked concerned and said, "Your butt?"

Logan grimaced and said, "No, my neck is killing me from sleeping on this couch, and my arm fell asleep where you were laying on me. Next time we sleep together, let's do it on a bed."

"I didn't exactly mean for us to sleep together, I just fell asleep."

He sat up and nodded, "Me too."

She sat up too and said, "So now in the light of day, do you regret letting me spank you?"

He pulled her into his lap and said, "Nope. It was kind of cute really. You should have seen how serious you were about the whole thing."

She punched his shoulder and said, "I am serious about it."

He gave her a little kiss and said, "I know, and I already told you it worked, so let's not keep bringing it up okay?"

She nodded and said, "Okay."

"I've got to head home and change clothes before school today. Are you gonna be there at lunch?"

"Yeah, I work this morning, but I'll be at school in time to have lunch with you."

She got up off his lap, and he headed for the front door. As soon as he was out, she turned to go take a shower and saw her father standing there in his bathrobe leaning against the doorframe to his bedroom. She just stood there wide-eyed for a second not knowing what to say. He gave her a knowing smile and said, "Grandpa would be so proud."

Veronica got bright red and muttered, "I've got to take a shower and go to work." As she darted past him to go to her room.

Keith chuckled and went to go make some coffee.