A/N: Ok, my first attempt at a VM fic. Tons of ideas, but, of course, I had to start here. Here's my take on life in Neptune after "The Bitch is Back"
Chapter One: Not Worth Getting Out of Bed For
The sunlight flooded through her room and she rolled over, pulling her blanket over her head, hoping it would go away. But somewhere in the distance, she could smell bacon, and that just might be worth facing the day for. Then she remembered the previous days' events and decided that not even bacon was worth dealing with that.
"Rise and Shine, Sunshine."
"Go away. It's Saturday."
"Come on, Veronica. You can't hide from the world forever."
"I can try."
"I cooked breakfast."
"I know. Thanks, but it doesn't help."
"Ready to talk?"
Veronica sat up and opened her eyes.
"Ugghhh…" she groaned and fell back down, covering her eyes with the blanket.
"I take that as a no?"
"It's just the same old story, dad. Veronica Mars and her completely messed up crazy life."
"Well, as long as that's all."
She shot up out of bed.
"Dad, I'm so sorry. I've been so wrapped up in me that I haven't even had time to congratulate you properly."
Veronica threw her arms around her dad's neck.
"And I'm so sorry for almost screwing it up for you."
"It's okay, honey. It all worked out in the end. Just like always."
"No…not just like always. Like almost never. I really would've blown it for you if it hadn't been for…."
"Jake…I mean if he hadn't accepted my apology and all…"
Keith stared at his daughter. Something was going on that she wasn't telling him. There's no way Jake Kane was going to drop this issue. Someone had intervened.
"Dad, I know, but you'll be angry."
"Me, angry? I don't do angry."
"It was Logan, okay. I don't know what he did and really don't know how he did it, but it was him. That's all I know."
Keith shook his head.
"So, just like you said, you're crazy messed up life. The usual."
"I knew things were bad. Jake wasn't going to let this go…"
"So you called Logan?"
"Well, no….it's complicated."
"I have time."
"I'm still dealing with it all, dad. Can we talk later? I promise I'll explain everything."
Yeah, just as soon as I figure it out.
"Fine, but I'm not letting this go, Veronica."
"Fine, dad. I'll be out for breakfast in 5 minutes, okay?"
Veronica fell back down on the bed and put her hands on her head.
"My life," she said out loud.
So I intended on telling my dad everything, but first I had to figure everything out. For that, I was going to have to go see Logan again. But first, I had unfinished business at the new Kane estate.
"Veronica. Come in."
"Look, first I just wanted to apologize for what happened…"
"Let's not waste time, Veronica. Where is the info you promised?"
Veronica handed Jake a file.
"This is everything I have. When Duncan fell off the grid, he really fell off. The last thing I have from him was a postcard from Rio, but I doubt he was even there."
"He didn't want anyone finding him, Jake. He just liked to keep in touch, so he'd buy postcards from all over, route them through post offices all over the world, and they'd finally make it here to me."
"Why only you?"
"Gee, Jake, I don't know. Maybe it was because I was the only one who tried to help him."
"Help? You call what you did helping…nevermind. Just give me the file. We're done."
"Done, Veronica. I don't want to see you anywhere near this place or my family ever again. If I do…the deal's off."
Veronica saluted, then quickly withdrew. She wouldn't bow down to the likes of Jake Kane, yet she didn't want to further upset him, either. She hated turning over her file on Duncan. She'd kept everything she could find on Duncan's whereabouts. He'd sent a few postcards, pictures, but she knew better than to believe he'd leave a trail. She was pretty sure that if she couldn't find him, neither would Jake and his goons, but she felt guilty just the same. She had no choice. If she wanted Jake to keep her break-in and theft out of the media she had to turn over everything she had on Duncan. Somehow, Logan had brokered this deal. She didn't know details…yet. It was hard for her to imagine how Logan had talked Jake into anything, given that there was little love lost between the two, but she would get to the bottom of it. And then there was Piz. She had to deal with him, somehow. She was on her way to the dorm to talk to him next. Although, she wasn't sure what she should say.
"Is there something I should know, Veronica?"
"About what, Piz?"
"About you and Logan for goodness sake. I mean, first he beats the hell out of me, then now this guy. That's not what friends do, Veronica. That's what boyfriends do. I should have been the one to kick that guy's ass."
"You were hardly in the condition to…"
"Stop, Veronica. You know, I kind of feel like I'm in some black and white movie where the plot is obvious to everyone except the main character."
"I knew better, Veronica. I thought I could make you forget him…"
"I hoped that we could have something stronger. I guess I was wrong."
"Piz, wait. You and I…"
"Veronica, I just need some time alone, okay. Please."
Veronica pulled into a space just outside the dorm. She took a deep breath and walked inside, nearly bumping into Wallace.
"Hey, Hey, I wondered when the victory party was? I wasn't invited?"
"Sorry, there hasn't been a party. Maybe we should have one. Surprise dad at the station?"
"I'm in. Call me."
Wallace headed out past her and she approached the door to his and Piz's room.
Piz wasn't smiling when he saw her like normal.
"Can we talk?"
"Yea, I guess. Come in."
"I'm sorry, Piz, I know this was all my fault. This is what happens when you date supersleuth Veronica Mars."
"No, Veronica. This is what happens when you fall for someone else's girl."
Piz grabbed her arms and Veronica looked into his eyes.
"Can you look me in the eye and tell me you don't love him? Hell, if you could just tell me that you love me, I could deal with that. That would give me a fighting chance and I would fight like hell for you, Veronica."
Veronica looked deep in his eyes for a second before letting her own fall to the floor. Piz released her.
"I'm sorry, Piz."
"It's my fault. My fault for falling for you. I knew better. Wallace, Mac, they all tried to warn me. Goodbye, Veronica."
Veronica knew there was nothing she could say. Her feelings for Logan aside, she knew she didn't love Piz. At least not in the way that he loved her.
"Goodbye, Piz. I'm sorry."
He nodded and turned. Veronica took that as her cue to leave. She closed the door behind her and walked back to her car. This was the story of her life.
Clouds….sad little clouds, ready to cry started multiplying all over the sky. I knew just how they felt. I was sad Piz had broke it off, but I couldn't blame him. He was right. But I still felt lost and alone. I drove to the Neptune Grand to get answers, but I wasn't sure I could deal with many much more today. Even the famous Veronica Mars sometimes breaks.
Just as she walked off the elevator she met a cheerful Dick coming her way.
"Hey, V, what's happening? So you and my man getting back at it?"
"Whoa, brush off," he said as she continued to walk past. She knocked on the door. He opened it.
"Can we talk?"
He opened the door wider and threw his arm up to allow her in. He slowly closed the door behind her.
"What exactly did you have to promise Jake Kane to get him to drop everything?"
"Oh, just my right leg, I'm going today to have that removed."
"I'm not in the mood."
Logan looked at Veronica's tired eyes. They looked red and swollen. He touched her cheek gently.
"Besides the normal?"
"Veronica, please. I'm listening."
"Piz and I just broke up."
He dropped his hand from her cheek.
"Oh. I'm sorry. Look, if I need to go apologize again, explain things…"
"What's to explain, Logan? Besides, with us there is very little explanation to give."
"Yeah. You're right about that. But I really am sorry."
"I know, Logan. It was bound to happen sooner or later."
"Is that what you wanted?"
Veronica didn't want to talk about her relationship right now.
"I want to know what you did to get Jake off my back?"
"You already know. I told him you'd give him the file you had on Duncan."
"How did you know I had a file on Duncan?"
"Because I know you," Logan smiled.
"Look, Veronica, we used to go way back, okay? I appealed to his better nature."
"He doesn't have a better nature."
"Ok, so I begged. I told Duncan wouldn't want you and your dad punished for what he had done, and that you were just trying to find out who invaded your privacy, that's all. I told him that I was involved in helping you find this dirtbag, too, and that he could tell everyone that I broke in."
"Why would you risk going to jail for me, Logan?"
"Because, I…because that's what's friends do."
"No it isn't."
"How would you know? How many friends do you have?"
"Ok, ok, I'm not buying the whole sell-yourself-out bit. What really happened?"
"Look, Jake and I talked about old times. About burned bridges and mended fences and how we'd both been sucker punched by Aaron. He needed some investment capital, I needed a favor. We did business. He's just a business man when you get right down to it. I just knew how to speak his language."
"You bribed him, Logan?"
"Apparently you didn't listen…I said invested."
"A nice bit of change. I got stock in return, so it really didn't cost anything."
"How much, Logan?"
"More than you can count, Veronica. Give it a rest."
"But why, Logan?"
"I told you. That's what friends do."
"Look, I realize that aside from Wallace and Mac, I don't have much to go on, but even if they had money like you do, I doubt I could count on them to fork it over to Jake Kane for me."
"Well, maybe they aren't as good of a friend as I am."
"Ok, I need to go."
"Not now, Logan. Later ok?"
She looked up at his hopeful eyes, which were practically begging her to stay. She knew now, without a doubt, Piz was right.
She turned and walked out of the suite, not ready to get back on the roller coaster just yet.