Author's Note: It's Official, THIS IS MY NEXT ONGOING! I love this concept and I know this has been done before, but you know me, and you know I'm going to put my own, heart-breaking spin on it. It's how I do. Anyway, I really hope you enjoy and review and favorite and story-alert and all that incredible stuff because it keeps me going when it feels like nothing else can. You all really do mean a lot to me
P.S. Another Update Tomorrow to Establish Kendall's part in the story, so stick around; should be fun. Luv ya. XoXo.
To say that Logan Mitchell had led a good life would be more than just a lie. It would be the utmost blasphemy that the even the unborn would know. Because to say Logan Mitchell had led a good life would implicate that the last nineteen, shitty years of his existence were worth something more than dollar-store liquid eye-liner and skinny jeans he stole from a client.
To say that Logan Mitchell was more than every other slut who sold themselves on the corner would be false.
To say that Logan Mitchell was anything more than a cheap trick would be a damned lie.
Because in the end, it was all he had left to hold onto anymore.
He lit his cigarette up against the cold October air and pulled the black, leather jacket around his shirtless upper region to fight the cold while letting the slow burn help bring him back to life. To help remind himself that he was still living. Because the pain was the only thing that kept him alive any more. That and his little brother. Or was his little brother the thing killing him? He honestly didn't know anymore.
He couldn't remember his actual parents; they died in a car crash when he was two, so the best he could come up with was maybe a little bit of a blur of what they might have been like. Apparently, his father was a mechanic and his mother was a nurse, but he didn't even know if he could trust that. He didn't know if he could trust anything.
He was in the foster system by the age of five, his great-grandmother – his only surviving relative – having gave up on raising the toddler at the age of eighty-three, and the little he knew about anything in his family came from a poorly scribbled letter she had left with him.
To be honest, Logan didn't exactly blame her for what she did, but that didn't make him feel any less betrayed about the situation. She was old and frail, but she was also family. Family was supposed to take care of each other no matter what. And yet, she didn't.
And that was why Logan was stuck in the system for thirteen years of his life; thirteen hellish years that he would hold onto bitterly whenever he encountered a new family. He realized why these people did it and he found it beyond vile; he refused to be used for the money that the state would hand over for someone to babysit him. No, he'd rather die than live like that.
His first family showed up right after he'd had his six birthday and honestly, the chances of a kid getting adopted past the age of three were low, but Logan didn't know that. He was six; he was still enamored by the way that ants crawled when he kicked the hill, so of course he was excited to hear that he had new parents. Their names were the Warners. They were a warm and welcoming young couple who had recently found out that they were infertile and would never be able to have kids. But before Mr. Warren would allow his wife to adopt, he wanted them to foster a child to see how they would do as parents.
They were both kind to Logan when he first arrived at their home and he loved it; he had never seen a house as big in his life before. It seemed to have a labyrinth of bed rooms and the walls were stocked with bright, well-framed family pictures. It was heaven for a kid who had never known wealth like this. Grandma Mitchell lived in a one person apartment in the upper, east side and he didn't exactly remember his first home while his parents were still alive. So being in a real home with comfort and luxury and family was all new to him. And he decided that he loved it.
And of course, as any family usually would in this situation, they began to spoil Logan with gifts and love, two things that were very new to him. They filled his room with Elmo Wall paper and he had a mound of stuffed bears and toy cars. And every night, each parent would take turns reading him a bed-time story or rocking him to sleep or singing until he drifted off, but no matter what, they were there. They were always there. It was every six-year olds dream.
The next week, Mrs. Warner got morning sickness.
It wasn't long after that the Warners discovered that somehow, they had actually conceived a child naturally and would be birthing a baby daughter in eight months. Logan had never been so excited in all of his life, the prospect of a baby sister exciting him more than anything else he could think of. It got him more excited than a thousand Elmo dolls or hugs or toys or anything else. Because for the first time, he was actually going to have a real, growing family.
It didn't quite work-out that way though; the Warner's were beyond elated to be having a child of their own. And since this was their first real child, they wanted to experience every step as a normal starting couple would, so a six-year-old boy didn't exactly fit into that equation well. Right after baby Emily Warner was born, merely weeks after Logan's seventh birthday, he was returned to the state's foster care program.
He didn't understand it at first; he didn't get why he was where he was again if he had parents. Parents who loved and cared for him. Parents who bought him toys and told him bed-time stories and held him when the storm outside was getting too loud. The Warner's were his parents now and like so many others before, they gave up on him. Like his grandmother. That was the first real time that Logan Mitchell felt heart-break. And that feeling never left him. How could someone abandon a child like that?
By his ninth birthday, he was starting to understand the idea that by a certain age, no one wanted you. He had first heard it one day when he was being looked after by one of the teenage fosters, but their words stuck with him.
"Your expiration dates comin real soon little buddy," the older boy said while helping the brunette with the book he was reading, "No one wants a teenager. No one."
At first, Logan didn't fully grasp what he was being told, but after a long time of careful thought and consideration, it made total sense to him. The only thing people wanted were babies. No one wanted a full grown child. A child they couldn't watch grow up. Have first times with. No, no, you wanted a clean slate. Not someone else's damaged goods.
His next foster parents were the Garcia's, a family that would change his life; whether that was a good thing or a bad thing, he still wasn't sure, but they did. The family first took him in a few months after his tenth birthday, and at first he was relieved. Grateful even. Maybe this would be the family that would finally end the cycle and adopt him. But like everything else in the brunette's small life, that didn't go as planned.
The Garcia's had problems; to say they were dysfunction would be a very kind understatement about the state the family was in. Fucked-Up would be a much better way of describing the way they worked.
Mr. Ruiz and Mrs. Suzanna Garcia only had one child of their own; one boy, Carlos, who was about Logan's same age. But, they were poor. They were beyond poor. So they did whatever possible to make the little money that they could and that's how they got into the foster system. When Logan first moved in, they were fostering four other children; when he left, they had seven, not including himself.
This home was nothing like the Warner's; there was no compassion or love at all, just an obvious exhaustion of every resource available. Including their main one of all, their own son Carlos. When the brunette first arrived, he'd made the decision to not get too attached when he saw how they lived. He had decided that inevitably, the state would pull him and the rest of the kids and he'd be right back where he started, so there was no reason to get to know anyone here, but after seven months of that same thought, he finally decided to open up to his roommate.
"Um, hi Carlos," the smaller boy started, feeling somewhat guilty that these were the first words he'd said to the boy he was sharing a room with, "I'm - I'm Logan. Logan Mitchell."
"Yeah, I know who you are," the Latin boy responded, resting himself against the pillows of his small, twin bed.
"I just – I wanted to get to know you a little more," Logan said, still not facing Carlos out of the embarrassment he was feeling.
"Well, you did steal my room," Carlos replied rather bitterly for a nine year old; he was one year younger than Logan and yet he sounded like he was his senior.
"I'm sorry – It's just, I'm just," the brunette was desperately stuttering out words, searching for the right thing to say.
"Calm down dude," the other boy responded with a small grin, "I was just kidding; can't you take a joke."
"Yeah, I'm just a little nervous today," Logan finally turned to face the boy he'd avoided for so long.
"I'm Carlos, Carlos Garcia, the boy you stole the room from," Carlos said with a smirk, "Good to meet you," he put his hand out.
"Hi, I'm Logan Mitchell, you're fake brother I guess," the shorter tween replied, going out for Carlos's out stretched hand.
"Ha, Ha! Too slow," the Latin boy said as he slapped his hand back fast before Logan could grab it.
"Hey, not fair, I was going to shake your hand," Logan replied, a slight pout that any ten-year-old would get for being tricked painting his face.
"Come on, you can hug me," Carlos stood up with hid arms outstretched, "you are my brother after all. My real brother. I don't even know what a fake brother is."
Logan decided to go in for the hug and he liked the warmth of it; over time, he learned what a playful, fun loving kid Carlos was. They became close, very close, and did almost everything together. Inseparable. In the most platonic way possible, they were bonded for life. And that would become important later.
CPS soon showed up to confiscate all of the kids the Garcia's had three years after Logan's original arrival and it was dramatic. Nine kids were taken back to the state with Mr. Garcia going to prison on Child Molestation charges and Mrs. Garcia facing charges for malnourishment on some of the older children. Luckily, both Carlos and Logan were sparred of these atrocities; most of the other children were not.
For the first time in his entire life, the brunette had someone he had to care for, and for some weird reason, he enjoyed it. He liked being Carlos's sole care-taker; he was his brother and he'd never forget that.
At the time they both arrived in foster care again, Logan was thirteen and Carlos was twelve, still just one year behind the smaller boy. It was a hard adaption for the Latin boy, but with the brunette's help, he got used to it; he accepted him as his only family left. And he liked it. Because for the first time in his life, he felt cared for. He felt like more than just another mouth to feed. To Carlos, Logan was real family. The only one he needed.
But that relationship almost ended when the Swanson's first showed up, looking for a teenager to help them to raise their two younger children. The Swanson's were nice, but they were also old, and after having their first two children past the age of forty-five, the toll that the kids took on them had an obvious affect. Logan was sixteen by this point and Carlos was fifteen so the Swanson's chose the one they thought more responsible, and Logan reluctantly went home with them the next day. Extremely Reluctantly. Because he swore to always protect Carlos, his only brother, and this separation made it that much harder. Yet Logan was smart. And he started to scheme.
"Um, Mrs. Swanson," the brunette said while making the sandwiches for the younger children at the counter, "may I be frank with you."
"Look Logan, you know I have places to be," the woman said while packing her briefcase, "I let you skip school today, what else do you want."
Logan winced a little, hating the idea of skipping school, but he was working on his plan, so this pain would simply have to wait.
"I just – I can't take care of your kids alone anymore; Jeremy is just so rough and Lorraine, Lorraine has so many clubs and activities. I can't handle this by myself and still get good grades."
"What do you want me to do," the woman responded, frustrated at the current conversation, "Mr. Swanson and I have work. We can't help."
"Well, I was wondering, maybe you could foster another teen; I just need help."
"What makes you believe that we would foster another teenager just to help raise our kids?"
"Let me be absolutely blunt," Logan replied, spreading the jelly slowly, "I know why I'm here and I know my place; I'm not your son, I'm your baby-sitter. Now I can start making trouble and get taken back by the state or you can cooperate and get me help. Is that clear?"
He finally looked up and saw the woman's shocked face.
"Fine, we'll look into it in a week or so, but for now, just do your job; since we're past the parenting bull-shit, just do what you're here for."
"Yes Mrs. Swanson," Logan said with a devious grin, "Whatever you say."
Three weeks later, they were back at the agency and there, sitting with a few of the other teens was Carlos, the dead look in his eyes breaking Logan's heart. He was supposed to care for his brother.
After hours of talking with social workers, the brunette was going to get the final word on the choice and from the recommendation he gave, he was sure they were going to take in the Latin boy.
"Well Logan, it looks like we've made our decision after all," the tall, balding man said while looking down at the brunette.
"Okay, so when are we taking him home," Logan replied with a giddy smile, happy to have won.
"Him, I believe you have it mistaken, we're fostering a girl," the woman interjected, "you said you needed help and we're getting it."
"I told you who I wanted and needed, and that most definitely was not a girl," the brunette replied, fury slowly rising within himself.
"We got you what you asked for; I believe a thank-you is in order," the taller man said with a slight scowl.
"No, no, I asked for a specific person and I detailed that out to you, so no, no thank-you is in order; get me who I want," the smaller teen replied, the anger in his voice making himself seem bigger than he was.
"Look Logan, we're your care-takers and we make decisions, so I will ask you one more time, say 'thank-you," the man, Mr. Swanson, was getting angry and he grabbed Logan's wrist roughly in an effort to intimidate the foster child.
"Oww," Logan moaned out, making a scene out of the action, "Please stop, you're hurting me," the nurses all turned to face them.
"What are you doing," hissed Mrs. Swanson, "Stop this right now."
Quickly, Logan undid his shirt and flashed the Swanson's his chest; he was covered with big, purple bruises from his pecks to his pelvis. He flashed them both a grin while they stared on in horror.
"Let me make something crystal clear," the brunette whispered out at the two adults, "I will find someone here and show them all of those marks to get out of your house. They'll do it. They'll do it and take your two spoiled kids away. And you'll go on trial for child endangerment. So let's get this straight, you'll get me who I want or I'll bring all of the shit I can down on you. Got it?"
The two adults swallowed hard before re-going through the process and bringing home a specific Latin boy that day. Carlos and Logan were once again re-united, but this time, they both decided to never be separated again.
Carlos walked in the room singing the tune to the newest Christina Aguilera song when Logan first introduced the idea.
"Carlitos," the brunette started slowly, wanting to ease into the subject, "What do you want to do when you grow up?"
"That's a strange question Loganator," the Latin boy responded while slipping the shirt off and putting the hoodie on.
"I know, but I want to know. We need to start planning our future out at one point."
"Well, it's kind of dorky,"
"What, What is it; you know I won't judge."
"It's just, I- I-, do I really have to admit this."
"Yes, Yes you do."
"Well, I kinda have this dream of one day doing Musical Theatre; you know, have my name in lights and sing and dance and act in a big Broadway show. But I'll never get to do that."
"Why; What's stopping you."
"Well, I need to go to some kind of talent school if that's going to work, you know."
"Well, we both know these two scum bags aren't going to help us there."
"But we could do it. We could go away to Los Angeles and get you into a school there. You know we could, we would just have to muster up enough money to go."
"Now how are we going to do that Logan?"
"Carlos, I think we need to run away."
"Logan! You're always the calculated one between the two of us; you know how stupid that sounds. You, of all people, know just how crazy that is."
"Think about it, we run away together and get you into some Musical College were you master your skill and become super famous and I get to live with you and help you out. I could totally write songs for you and you know it."
"Yeah, I guess so."
"Yeah, you should guess so, so let's do it."
"You know we can't leave tonight."
"It doesn't have to be today, I just need you to promise to do this with me."
"Okay," Carlos flashed his smirk while running his hand through his hair, "Promise."
That night would change their lives; six months later, Carlos and Logan ran away together from where they were in Minnesota all the way to Los Angeles. And it wasn't easy.
No, not at all.
For on that trip across the country, Logan did something that he knew he'd regret; on the journey to California, Logan Mitchell turned his first hook.
And that's how he got to where he was now on that cold street corner with his eye-liner starting to smudge in all different directions. The wind was biting and he could feel every bit of it hit him like tiny knives that were poised to bring him straight into the ground. He gritted his teeth before putting the cigarette out in his thick, worn coat jacket and feeling the warmth etch into his skin.
He flitted back into the dark club and farther back into one of the rooms that was some-what hidden when he first saw the blonde boy. The tall, beefy blonde boy that would change his life forever.