A/N: I've been sitting on this for over a week. Decided it won't get much better. This is a companion piece to Breathe Again, which was based off of spoilers given by Rob Thomas for the movie. I don't use beta's so hopefully I caught all glaring mistakes. I own nothing but the computer I typed this story on. Rob Thomas owns everything else, including pieces of my soul.

Ever After

You say I would make a better liar
And never face the music when it's dire
And I breathe disaster, ever after
Don't pull away from me now

Logan Echolls was never one to give up easily. He'd been through more tragedies than most people thrice his age and he was still standing. When sober, he believed it was because he was stupid. After all, who liked being an eternal punching bag for the universe? However, when he was shit-faced, a certain clarity would arise and he'd tell the universe, or anyone in the general vicinity, to kindly fuck off because he wasn't going to let anyone rain on his shitty parade.

He was also very good at lying to himself; so good, he barely noticed anymore. Was it weird to be naive to your own bullshit or was it a blessing that you got so good at pretending that the lies kind of became some sort of truth?

Logan pretended that Veronica's leaving didn't shatter what was left of his heart. He pretended he believed her when she lamely told him they'd keep in touch. In fact, he spent months still pining away for her despite the clear lack of calls, texts, or emails. He made it through half his sophomore year with some kind of sick delusion that if he kept himself in check and was a good boy, she'd come back to him and they'd finally get it right.

He spent the second half mostly drunk.

To be fair, he had every intention of getting his life in order but the universe was an asshole that way. It was kind of fitting that what took him down wasn't some pissed off bitch boy in the Russian mob but the driver of a pick-up truck that was blind as shit.

They told him he was lucky. His entire leg was in a cast after being broken in three places and bad enough to require surgery but that'd been the extent of any "serious" injuries. Logan didn't count concussions, no matter how pissy they made him. The nurses were happy when the doctor could finally discharge him, he could tell, but he really wasn't giving a fuck. He was just glad that he could get to the bathroom on his own.

He missed almost two months of classes and had to scrap the semester. Dick thought it was awesome, of course, but sitting around playing video games and watching tv got old after a week. Having too much time on his hands was never good for Logan. He either did stupid shit that only made things worse or he got drunk and far too introspective, which also made things worse. Drunk was better than bored when you're not yet drunk. Hindsight gets lost after that until the hangover.

Don't you move
Can't you stay where you are, just for now
I could be your perfect disaster
You could be my ever after

He thought about her too much. Thinking about her led to thinking about his mother and Lilly and even Duncan. He wasn't going to give even a second of a thought to his father. Lolling his head over to look at Dick, however loyal and there, depressed him further. To think that Dick Casablancas was all he had left in this world; that all they had was each other, was probably as low as he's felt in a long time. Maybe it was because he was drunk or maybe because he'd never really said it before, but Logan told Dick he was a good friend. Dick's usual response stalled immediately, which told Logan he must have looked too serious and sad. Instead he got the same in return. All Logan could think was no, I'm not. He let it go, though. He just nodded and tried to hold onto that lie like he did all the others.

Dick tried to get him to go out; tried to get him to hook up with any girl that would have him despite the clunky cast. It occurred to Logan that he'd basically become a monk since Veronica left but instead of copping to it, he just told Dick to fuck off. Dick, being Dick, kindly told him to remove his balls from his vagina because he was turning into a pussy. Logan chose to ignore him. Although, Dick's added comment that maybe Veronica took Logan's balls with her earned him an outstretched middle finger and an opportunity to see just how visibly present his balls were. After a slightly awkward stand-off, Dick quietly told him that he wasn't going to watch him became a shut-in because of Veronica Freakin' Mars again; that he needed to get on with his life because she sure as hell wasn't waiting for him. Logan knew he was right. He hated when Dick made valid points.

Apologies, I'm not myself but I can guarantee
That when I get back, you won't believe
That you know me well
Don't want to think about it
I'm fuckin' tired of getting sick about it
Now stand back up and be a man about it
And fight for something, fight for something, fight for something, oh

Maybe it was getting the cast off or maybe it was because he'd finally stumbled out of his stupor, but Logan felt better kind of suddenly. He was having the kind of day where every song played was his favorite and every light was green. It was such an unknown feeling that he wasn't sure if it was even real. Even his happiest moments with Veronica were spent on eggshells, waiting for that shoe to drop. Up until now, his life had been on a constant loop of wake/stumble/pretend/sleep, rinse and repeat. For whatever reason, today felt different; he felt different. He was smart enough to know that it wasn't some cosmic epiphany but more like a quiet slap to the face that startled him just enough to break the cycle. It only took him a year to figure out but, really, that was a new record.

Life changes constantly. Logan's has changed more times than he liked to count so what's to say he couldn't change it himself for once? Why should he keep waiting for someone else to decide his fate? Lilly decided it when she ended things with him, then died. His father decided it when he chose a belt over love; when he fucked and killed his girlfriend. His mother decided it when she killed herself. He let Veronica decide his fate every chance she got. She left and he was still letting her decide. He couldn't anymore. He was too young and life wasn't short enough to let it dwindle away so pathetically.

He didn't have a plan. That's never been his style. One way or another, he was going to move on. And if he couldn't do that, then he was going to act like he believed the biggest lie of his life. Happily ever after.

Somehow don't you dare fail, fail me now, ever after
Somehow don't you dare fail, fail me now, ever after

Ever After by Marianas Trench