Author's Note: Yet another pre-series canon fic from Titled Heart and my's canon series! This one really sprouted from two things. The first was in Big Time Jobs when James said the only job he and Logan ever had was shoveling snow, the second was from a meta that was posted on LJ about how in the pilot there are absolutely no pictures of Kendall's father in the Knight house which means he did not die and he did not leave on good terms. Anyway, I hope you like it! Please read and review!
Disclaimer: I do not own BTR.
Logan was finishing up the last of his geometry homework when there was a knock on his door. He furrowed his eyebrows, shoving his textbook off his lap and pushed himself up off the bed. Answering the door a wave of surprise hit him. "Kendall," he smiled, his stomach flipping like usual. "What's up?" He was used to this reaction. Ever since that first day when he entered Mr. Morris' class and saw those possessive green eyes focused on him.
"Logie," the blonde muttered, moving into the room as Logan closed the door behind him. He paced the room silently, biting the inside of his cheek. His eyes roamed the room, landing everywhere except on Logan's before he collapsed onto the bed, hiding his face in his hands.
"Kendall, what's wrong," Logan whispered, his voice dripping with worry as he sat next to the taller teen. He silently ran his fingers through his friend's hair, trying to calm him. Logan had never seen his friend like this. He was usually the fearless captain of the hockey team or the mischievous leader of their group of friends.
Kendall leaned into the touch, his eyes trained on the floor as he moved his hands from his face. "I'm sorry," he whispered, his voice sounding smaller than it ever had. "I just didn't know who else to go to. James and Carlos wouldn't have been able to help."
Logan shushed him gently and pulled him into a hug, enjoying the way the taller teen wrapped his arms around his waist and clung. "Tell me what happened."
The blonde nodded as he rested his forehead against the other's shoulder. "I don't think James and Carlos ever told you," he began in a whisper. "But my father isn't around anymore."
Logan nodded, rubbing his back. "James said he died?"
Kendall laughed bitterly and shook his head, pulling away from the hug and standing to pace. "I wish it was that."
Logan watched him confused, "Kendall?"
He shook his head, his jaw clenched tight. "My father left when I was eight. He said he never signed up to be a dad and one kid was bad enough, but now with two he just couldn't take it. He wanted to live his own life and kids were a burden he never wanted," Kendall said his voice bitter at the memory. Logan watched him in shock, a sudden rage building in him that he had never felt before. He wanted to beat the crap out of this man that was so willing to toss the Knight family to the side.
"I saw it all," Kendall continued, his back to Logan. "They were fighting again and mom sent me to my room, but I hid on the staircase. I heard everything he said. I heard him call my mom a whore and me a bastard. He swore I wasn't his kid, even if I did look just like him. My mom was crying," he whispered softer, a protective growl seeping into his voice. "She begged him to be reasonable, but he wouldn't listen. And then," he paused looking at the ceiling.
Logan stood and moved to his side, rubbing soft circles into his back. The blonde relaxed into the touch but kept his face turned away from the shorter teen. Tears were welling up in his eyes from the memory he tried so hard to forget.
"He called Katie a bastard too and went to hit her. He was drunk. I lost it. As soon as I saw him walking toward her, his hand in the air, I jumped off the banister and tackled him to the floor. I kicked, bit, and punched, anything to make sure he didn't hurt her. Mom was stunned at first that he would even think of hurting Katie but she got a hold of herself and called the cops. By the time they got there I had a black eye and mom looked like she had been in a bar fight with a 200 pound wrestler. My father looked worse than either of us."
Logan stood stunned at Kendall's side. He knew how easily it would've been for the man to pick up an eight year old Kendall and toss him into the wall. He could've gone into a coma or worse. The thought made Logan shudder as he pulled his friend into a tight hug.
Kendall let his arm wrap around him, pulling the brunette closer. He felt tears roll down his cheeks and he silently tried to fight them back. "He was in jail till I turned fourteen. He got out early on good behavior. Mom got a restraining order against him when he was sentenced so he's never allowed near us again. But…he doesn't pay child support. His family hasn't even tried to help us. Mom's been struggling with finances since as long as I can remember. Her parents help out as much as they can but it's not like they're rich."
Logan was already putting together just how much he had in his bank account his parents gave him. He'd give everything he had to Kendall but he doubted it'd be enough to keep them a float for longer than a few months.
"So," Kendall continued, shaking slightly. "I decided to try and get a job since I was finally old enough." He turned in Logan's hold, seeking out his warmth and resting his forehead on the other's shoulder. "But everywhere I go they say they aren't hiring. I've tried all the fast food joints, department stores, the mall, I even applied as a janitor at a retirement home. No one is willing to hire me."
Logan's mind quickly began working. His father had become the favorite customer at the grocery store down the street. He had performed a life saving surgery on the owner so the Mitchell family was always welcomed with open arms when they shopped. They even got the employee discount. Not that they needed it. Logan would bet his future career that if he asked the owner, Kendall would be hired. The only problem was that Kendall was proud. He would never accept a hand out from anyone. He hated pity. "It's alright big guy," Logan whispered, holding the stressed out teen close. "You'll find a job. You're Kendall Knight. You can get through anything."
He smiled against the other teens shoulder. "Thanks Logie," he whispered.
"I can help you out," Logan grinned. "We'll scour the newspaper for jobs. The internet too! There are more jobs there anyway. I mean, if anything I bet you could find an old woman who needs help shoveling snow."
Kendall chuckled against Logan's neck. He held him close once more before letting go and smiling at him gently, his eyes slightly red from crying. "You really know just what to say to cheer me up."
Logan grinned and shoved at the taller boy's shoulder playfully. "It's because I'm the genius."
Kendall grinned wider and shook his head. "Just don't let your head get too big Logie or I'll have to knock you down a peg," he teased. Logan's grin got impossibly wider.
Logan walked into the grocery store with determination. He was going to get Kendall this job. He knew the manager would do it. Anything for the son of the doctor who saved his life, that's what he always said.
After asking a few employees Logan found Mr. Palmer and was escorted to his office. "What can I do for you today," the man grinned. He was always happy to see a Mitchell.
"Well Sir," Logan began. "I was wondering if you could do me a big favor that would really, in the end, be beneficial to you too."
"What's this favor?"
"I was wondering if there were any jobs-,"
"Oh of course we'll hire you!" The man grinned as he moved to stand thinking it was over.
"No," Logan said, eyes wide hoping he hadn't just stolen Kendall's chance, "I was wondering if you'd hire my friend, Kendall Knight."
"Oh the Knight boy? He applied here but he doesn't have any experience," Mr. Palmer said frowning slightly. "I know you don't have any experience either but with your father recommending you I wouldn't have had a problem."
"I know that Sir, but you can trust me, Kendall is a dedicated hard worker. He would never let you down and he'll be the best employee you ever had! He's charismatic, kind, generous, funny, and honorable. You'd be getting a great addition to your team and it'd really help him out a lot too!"
He examined the boy in front of him and shook his head. "If he's a friend of yours he'll probably be good…," he hesitated and mumbled, "but you are friends with that Garcia boy who wears a helmet all the time and likes to jump into shopping carts and pretends it's a car as the Diamond boy pushes him through the place recklessly."
"I'll give you my word Kendall isn't like that. He'd take the job seriously," Logan pleaded.
The older man sighed as he rubbed his forehead. "I don't know Logan, I mean, I do appreciate what your father did for me but this would be a big risk…teenage boys tend to be reckless."
"I'll do anything if you give Kendall this job. I'll shovel your driveway, I'll walk your dog, I'll clean your house and tutor your kids…anything just please give him this job," he begged, his brown eyes wide and desperate.
"Why does he need the job so bad? Is he in some kind of trouble?" Mr. Palmer looked at him suspiciously. "I don't need some drug addict working here. He has to do a drug test like everyone else."
"He's not on drugs, there's no gang or mob out to get him, he just…,"Logan paused. He didn't want to give out Kendall's whole back story to this man. What if he went around and blabbed it all over the work place? Kendall didn't like pity. "He just needs the job. It's not for any bad reason…if you knew the reason you'd be proud."
"He knocked a girl up didn't he?"
"No!" Logan ignored the way his chest clenched at the idea of Kendall sleeping with some random chick and getting her pregnant. He didn't need that added responsibility. No, Kendall should stay celibate till he met someone good enough for him. Logan would know when that person came around and then he'd tell Kendall.
"Alright, alright, tell him he got the job."
"Actually," Logan bit his lip smiling slightly. "I was wondering if you could pretend I didn't talk to you…and act like you hired him just because you liked him. He's really proud…"
Mr. Palmer sighed. "Fine, but you have to shovel my driveway, walk my dog, and tutor my kid…just like you said."
Logan nodded quickly. "I will I swear!"
"Alright," Mr. Palmer grabbed a sheet of paper and scribbled down his address pushing it to Logan when he finished. "This is my address. I'll call Kendall tonight and let him know he starts tomorrow after school."
Logan grinned so wide he'd swear his cheeks would be sore for weeks. "You won't regret this! Kendall's going to be the best employee you ever had!" He popped up out of his chair and shook the man's hand gratefully.
He chuckled and shook his head. "If I do regret it then you're going to have to tutor my kid till he gets into university." He smiled teasingly.
Logan laughed and shook his head, agreeing wholeheartedly. He knew Kendall would be great because Kendall is the best at everything he does.
Three days after the talk with Mr. Palmer and Kendall was still amazed he had suddenly been offered the job. He couldn't keep the grin off his face at work and his mother was thankful for the extra help, even if she had fought with him at first. She didn't want her son to worry about things like this, not yet. This was her job not his, that's what she told him. She wanted him to be a kid as long as he could but he convinced her that this was what was best for Katie. This way she could still be carefree and not worry about it. He could help take care of them. He wasn't like his dad; he wouldn't abandon his family when they needed him. He was a better man.
Kendall was silently pushing the carts into place when Logan and James strolled up. "Hey guys," he grinned.
"Hey," James sighed.
"Hi," Logan grinned back.
Kendall raised his eyebrow at the taller teen. "Why do you look so down?"
"Logan convinced me to help him shovel some guy's drive way. Does this look like the face of someone who should be shoveling anyone's driveway?" James gestured to his face and glared at Logan.
"I can't do it alone," Logan whined. "Besides he said he'd pay us and you wanted to get that new Cuda thing right?"
James grinned as he began rattling off the latest product the company had put out. Kendall and Logan ignored him.
"You're shoveling snow?" Kendall examined Logan, worry crossing his features. "Are you sure that's safe? Have you ever done it before?" He suddenly wished he had the day off. If he was there he could make sure Logan wasn't hurt, James would be too worried about his own face he wouldn't look out for Logan.
The shorter teen chuckled. "I'll be fine. It's not like Carlos will be there. James will probably be too busy complaining to do anything and I'll do it all myself and I'm not that clumsy."
Kendall's worry didn't fade. "I wish you would've asked me to help you."
"I didn't want to bother you. You've got a job already and you need to use the time you're not working to rest and do homework. James on the other hand does nothing at all."
"Hey!" James glared. "I do stuff."
"Fixing your hair for three hours does not count as stuff."
James sighed annoyed and crossed his arms over his chest.
Kendall smiled at his two friends and shook his head. "Next time ask me, okay Logie?"
Logan nodded and ignored the blush that rose to his cheeks at the nickname. "Let's get going, James." He smiled at Kendall and put his hand on his shoulder. "Enjoy the rest of your day."
The blonde grinned and nodded, watching the other two walk off.
The job took three hours. James started a snowball fight at one point and Logan got pulled into it before he finally demanded they focus. He was not prepared to lose all day to this. Once they finished Logan told James to wait outside as he went into the house to tell Mrs. Palmer the job was completed and 'collect the money' as he told James.
Mrs. Palmer gave him two cookies, which he ate himself before he made it outside. James was smiling when he came back out. "Well?"
Logan smiled. "Fifty each," he said, handing James cash.
"Wow! This is more than I needed for the new Cuda hair moose! Come on! Let's go to the store!" James ignored Logan's protests as he ran to the store.
Kendall sighed as he stretched out on his couch, his head on Logan's shoulder and his feet hitting James' leg as the taller teen attempted to scoot more into Carlos to avoid the blonde's stretch.
"Which movie do you wanna watch now," Carlos grinned bouncing slightly. James was almost in his lap but neither of the two seemed to mind it.
"Logie should pick," Kendall mumbled as he snuggled down more into Logan, closing his eyes.
"There's this documentary I wanted to watch about these doctors who-,"
Carlos groaned. "That's why we don't let Logan pick the movies."
"Yeah come on Logan its Saturday can we just…stop trying to learn," James sighed.
"If Logie wants to watch the documentary then we're watching the documentary. He never gets to pick the movie we watch and it's about time he gets a chance," Kendall cut in, glaring slightly at the other two boys.
"Well," Logan began, feeling guilty over the movie he chose. "I could pick another one?"
"No," Kendall moved to get up, ignoring the way his stomach clenched at the loss of heat from Logan. "Where's the movie? In your bag?" He moved to Logan's back pack, opening it up and searching for the movie.
"I bring a movie I like just in case," Logan mumbled watching Kendall then turning to Carlos and James who both looked like pouting five year olds. "Kendall," Logan began his eyes going back to him. "Really we can watch something else its fine. I've been wanting to see that new comedy you got anyway, let's just watch that?"
"Yeah," James cut in. "Listen to the smart one Kendall!"
"Three against one wins! Put in the comedy," Carlos grinned bouncing slightly.
Kendall held the documentary in his hands and sighed. "Are you sure Logie?"
Logan nodded and watched as Kendall silently put the comedy in, still holding Logan's movie in his hands, and moved back to his spot on the couch, sitting so close to Logan that their sides were pressed flush against each other. As the movie started Kendall looked down at the dvd in his hands, reading the back of it silently. "I want to watch this later," Kendall whispered to Logan. "So, you're just going to have to stay the night because I won't understand any of it unless you're with me to explain it."
The brunette blushed as his gaze drifted to the blonde. "Are you sure? I mean, you're going to be bored…"
"No I won't." Kendall grinned at him, letting the movie rest in his lap. "You know at work, Mr. Palmer, he talks about you a lot. Says you're going to be this famous doctor just like your dad."
"He does," Logan asked his voice slightly higher from embarrassment.
"Yep, I told him he was wrong," Kendall began. "I told him you'd be better than your dad because you're more dedicated."
Logan's blush deepened. "You're such a kiss ass."
Kendall laughed and shook his head grinning wide at the other boy. "Are you going to stay the night?"
The brunette smiled and nodded. "Of course, I just have to call my parents and let them know."
The blonde nodded and nudged his shoulder. "Go do it now before I get my hopes up."
He rolled his eyes and smirked as he got off the couch, moving to the phone in the kitchen. His mother answered the phone on the third ring, just like always. She said it was proper etiquette to wait till the third ring. The first ring says you're desperate, the second says you're not busy, the third says you had to stop what you were doing to answer, and anything after that is rude. "Mom," Logan began.
"Yes dear," she smiled on the other end. Logan glanced at the clock on the oven. It was just about four thirty, which meant she was preparing dinner and wearing her white frilly apron.
"I was wondering, if it'd be ok if I stayed at Kendall's place tonight?"
"Logan," she began, her voice going from pleasant to annoyed in half a second. "I would prefer it if you came home. If you stayed there who knows how long you'd stay up till! A growing boy needs eight hours of sleep. Plus you need to study for the test your father is preparing for you on Sunday. And you have to clean your room."
Now she was just making excuses. Logan pinched the bridge of his nose. "Mom, my room is immaculate. As for the test, I'm ready. I've been studying for it all week. And I will get eight hours, don't worry ok? Please let me stay?"
Logan heard his father's voice cut in from a distance. "Oh just let the boy stay."
His mother sighed into the phone. "Fine, but I expect you to get an A on this test Logan."
Logan agreed and thanked his mother before hanging the phone up.
"Did she say yes," Kendall asked as he moved closer to Logan.
The brunette grinned and nodded. "Now you're stuck watching it," he teased.
The blonde chuckled and shook his head, moving to shove at the other's shoulder playfully. "I told you I wanted to watch it." His smile stayed as he moved through the kitchen looking for snacks.
"Don't you have to ask your mom if I can stay?"
"Nah, you're like family Logan. Besides, my mom loves you. I think she's hoping you'll marry in," he smirked and pulled a box of gummy snacks, a bag of chips, and cookies out of the cupboard.
Logan blushed bright. "Katie's way too young to even be thinking about marriage and besides she's like my little sister, that's gross," he said, his face scrunched in horror.
"I know," Kendall smiled as he poured the chips into a bowl. "Mom thinks so too." His smile changed into a smirk as he watched the other teen's face turn into confusion as he tilted his head. "Do you want milk for your cookies Logie?"
"Yeah," he mumbled, still distracted by who Ms. Knight could want him to marry to get into the Knight family. "How is work?"
Kendall grinned. "Great, well, not great but I'm glad to have it. Mom's been less stressed out. Katie's been really happy too because we can afford the place she wants to go for her birthday now."
"That's great!" He grinned wide at the other boy as he moved to grab the bag of cookies. "Are you guys going to want help setting up the birthday thing? I could help no problem. Like doing balloons and the cake and stuff…where does she want it?"
"Chuck-E-Cheese," Kendall laughed. "It's one of the few times she acts her age. But yeah it you want to help with balloons and stuff that'd be great! You can stay the night the night before and just go with mom and me to get the place ready."
Logan grinned as he nodded. He'd do more than that. He'd get them to lower their price, at least, for the Knight family. He'd go there and figure out how much it's costing them, talk the manager into letting him pay for a portion and then get him to tell the Knight's the new lower cost. It'd be part of his birthday present to Katie. The other part was going to be this book she wanted. Kendall already told him he was getting her a bike and their mom was getting her an Ipod.
They continued talking about the party, distracting Carlos and James from the movie so that they joined in too. They would all help with the decorations and be there to chaperone the kids so Ms. Knight wouldn't have to do it alone. Kendall never said how much it'd cost, but Logan wouldn't let him spend all his hard earned money for this. He wanted, and he was sure Katie and Ms. Knight would too, Kendall to spend it on himself. He hardly ever did things for himself…he deserved it. And if he was too proud to accept Logan's help out right, then he'd sneak behind the scenes and make sure Kendall could do the things he wanted and still be helping out the ones he loved. Whether it was getting Kendall a job or passing him the puck so he could be the star player that Logan knew he could be so that he'd shine to the college recruiters, Logan was willing to do anything to make sure Kendall Knight was happy.