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twenty one reasons

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twenty-one reasons--

why a bad idea remains a bad idea, even if it feels like a good one at the time.

 

1.

Logan touching himself as you eat lunch is nearly enough to put you off your not-quite-meatloaf. Psychotic lowlife seems to be his job description lately. But let's face it; before, it was wild party animal slash jealous yet not-very-trustworthy boyfriend. A step down, but not all that far.

-

When you saw the video of when they found Lilly's body on the internet, you assumed Keith Mars leaked it for money. Let's face it; they could have used the money. Veronica cried, but she didn't say it was wrong to try and take the Kane family down. She didn't say it was wrong to go after someone grieving. She didn't say anything.

Now when you tease her, when you say anything to her, it's to get a rise out of Duncan. Veronica, you don't recognise at all, and you don't really care. She used to be fun, but it was probably just because Lilly was fun.

When Duncan tells you to leave her alone, she still doesn't say anything. You still don't care.

You don't even care when she puts the bong in your locker, mostly because if it were happening to someone else you would find it absolutely hilarious. Something of the people you were seems to be buried deep in the fact that both of you have the same sense of humor. It's changed since Lilly died, of course, become nastier, harder, less forgiving, but you both find this moment funny, and so it seems like might be a good day. Certainly not boring, and to you, it equals the same thing.

Except you're arrested, and your dad's going to give you a broken bone, so you go back to not caring about Veronica or who she is or who she was, except to think about revenge.

-

Logan with a crowbar scares you only a little. It surprises you that he can scare you at all. Also, you hate him for smashing up your car. It's not that you love it, or that you're even particularly attached to it, but it cost your father a lot of money comparably, and without it you're going to be stuck without transportation. You're going to be helpless. Logan knows that.

"You know what you cost me?"

He would have found the bong thing funny, if it were anyone else. How petty. "Clearly," you say, "your sense of humor."

"Nope."

Logan with a crowbar is only a little bit scary; Weevil and his entire gang facing off with Logan is almost a lot scary. Not because you're in the middle, but because for all your street smarts and attitude, you still don't really like violence all that much. Plus, Logan seems to understand the seriousness of the situation and pushes things anyway.

Logan really has lost his sense of humor. Maybe you have too, because you can't decide whether Logan's kind of strong, standing up and refusing to apologise. Obviously your priorities and sense of right and wrong are all turned around when things get personal. He'd never apologize, anyway, and maybe he shouldn't.

He definitely hates you, too.

 

2.

Newspaper class is going to be hell. Not only do you have to put up with trying not to feel akward around zombie-like Duncan, but now Logan and his merry men are sharing two of your classes.

Logan's new girlfriend is probably not even as smart as Logan is. You say, "really, I'm just here to be close to you," and his answering grin makes you want to punch him out.

The anger isn't belly-deep, it's not like when he smashed up your headlights. Frustration is almost worse than anger, because it's a surface emotion, it's not something you can squash down. It itches on the surface. If you cared about what Logan thought, or about what his bitchy new girl thought, you'd be angry at them. Instead you're just frustrated that another hour of your life each day is going to suck.

-

Veronica's tire is flat, and you didn't even do it this time. "Bummer," you say, and you're serious. Not that you care. You don't care that Troy's talking to her. Troy's kind of boring, so if he wants to become a social leper, whatever. He's Duncan's friend, not yours.

"Someone should tell him," Caitlin says. Whatever. Duncan comes to the rescue again, Troy comes to the rescue, too. Whatever. You don't care who's talking to her or who's not.

-

Logan doesn't even flinch when you accuse him of credit card fraud. "Prove it," he says to you and walks away. You've never ever seen Logan unsure of anything in his entire life.

-

You don't want to listen to Veronica because, unfortunately, she has a bad habit of being right. You can't help but call the number because Veronica has a bad habit of being right. You hate her for it.

First Lilly, now Caitlin. At least you didn't like Caitlin very much. And at least this time you'll make the guy pay for it. And when Caitlin tries to act like everything's normal, it definitely won't be.

-

3.

You really just like it better when Veronica's not around. "Okay, man, you be the fool on the hill, see if I care," you tell Duncan. If he doesn't care that Troy's all into Veronica, you don't care either.

Of course he does care. But you still don't.

-

4.

And this would have been the week the four of you were going to your second homecoming dance. Maybe they think the fountain is a nice consolation prize.

You look at Logan, and he looks at you; the two of you are the only people in the room that could possibly hate the idea of a Lilly Kane Memorial Fountain. For five seconds it's like you're on the same wavelength. The two of you used to have a lot of fun. Maybe he's thinking about the last homecoming you spent together - after all, it was one of the best limo parties Logan threw for the four of you.

For all that, it's only five seconds.

-

She comes up and it's like a little piece of the past walked out of the computer screen. You say, "what part of my ignoring you makes you think you're welcome?"

It's not up to your usual calibre, but watching an hour and a half of Lilly grow up a polite, proper little girl has soured your taste for the past. Veronica asks, "what're you doing?"

Watching the Kanes tear down everything about Lilly you loved and build it back up into someone just a little more appropriate, is what you're doing.

She says, "It's Lilly as a long distance commercial," and you want to nod.

You don't, because it means then you're actually agreeing with Veronica Mars. You can't help but say, "it's nothing about Lilly, is it?" because Veronica and you are both right.

The two of you know exactly what Lilly would have thought of it, and for five seconds you're on the same wavelength. No matter what else you've said and say about Veronica, you know she loved and loves Lilly Kane.

-

You give him the tapes because the two of you, you and Logan, are the only ones that remember who Lilly really was. The fountain is nothing, there's absolutely nothing of her in the fountain. But you and Logan still have something of her, and maybe that puts you on the same wavelength for more than five seconds.

-

5.

You want to throw up, you want to drink more, you really don't want to go to your chemistry class in, oh, six hours, but all that is topped by, gee, the only person Troy could call to bail all of you out is Veronica. Now you know you're going to throw up.

As you get out of the car, you ask Veronica, "does this mean that you're going to play nice, then?"

It's a novel idea, but she says, "walk in front of the car, we'll see." Yeah, nothing's really changed, though it is funny.

It's still funny even when she accuses you of buying steroids. "You suck at this Nancy Drew stuff, you really should get another hobby."

Like she's going to get anything out of you. Like you care about Troy's car enough to make nice with Veronica. If she wants to think that Troy's the helpless victim, then she's *really* not any good at what she does.

-

6.

You don't care about school at all, and you barely care about pirate points. It's not like if all of a sudden you're allowed to order food on campus that you'll start getting pizza for lunch. You feel bad for Duncan - obviously Logan set him up. Nothing is beneath Logan when it comes to making sure his privileged life is protected. When Duncan wins, you hate Logan and still feel sorry for Duncan.

You'll get to the bottom of this, regardless.

When he makes fun of Wanda, calls her a narc, you don't care because it doesn't matter what he says about it - of anyone, you're not going to believe Logan. When he says, "I just don't have time to be responsible for every little thing that goes wrong in your life," you maybe care. A little.

-

7.

Later, you'll regret ever being nice to Weevil just like you'll regret ever getting to know him. It doesn't matter that for a brief moment, you're united - Mr. Daniels' car with a flagpole stuck through it is probably one of the things you're proudest of doing, as far as schoolwork goes. It doesn't matter, though, because you'll want Weevil a thousand miles away soon enough. It's bad enough that Lilly was with him - the two of you are just too similar.

Plus, Veronica will somehow end up trusting him more than you.

-

8.

No one seems surprised about your purity score, least of all you.

There are the usual jokes, but they barely register - for the amount of fun this test brought, you'll put up with a few candid remarks about what position you like best.

When Meg tells you that you do have friends, you barely believe her. Two people is friends, plural, but still, the way she seems to mean it suggests she thinks more than just her and Wallace like you. That, however, isn't possible; you don't care, you have accepted the fact, and you'll be shocked to find Meg right and you wrong.

You do have friends, a few of them. There's no way for you to know if you don't trust them, though. There's also no way for you to possible fathom that Logan will be one of them.

-

9.

The mooncalf collective - it should be a place riddled with danger, drugs, sex and rock-and-roll. Instead, for the first time you're somewhere that people actually want you to sit down - even moreso than when Lilly was alive and Duncan was your boyfriend, because then people wanted you to sit for Lilly or Duncan, not you. These are the people you're infiltrating and using; they're eager to get to know you, simply because they want to get to know you.

You're probably not nice enough to be a cultist.

Maybe you do belong in Neptune, maybe you are more like Logan and the movie star fakes than you'd like to admit. It's yet one more thing that you don't want to consider, your similarity to any of the 09ers, and yet you can't deny it - these cult members are nicer than you ever will be, and you don't even know what you're going to do to Logan yet.

Even if you are a horrible person, out to use everyone, at least you want everyone thinking for themselves. You want people to have their answers. Maybe that counts.

-

10.

For once, you find yourself more pissed off at someone than Veronica, and at the same time admire them too. Just like Veronica. It doesn't matter that Weevil's a little piece of shit, he's still more interesting than everyone else at your poker table. That pisses you off almost as much as the instinctual reaction you have to be pissed off on his behalf. Just like Veronica.

And Just Like Veronica, he really doesn't care whether people rag on him or make fun of him because Weevil, he really believes that he's better than everyone making the jokes. He doesn't need your indignation. And he is playing nice; more than you would if it were your five grand.

Duncan says, "When did you become a full-fledged jackass?"

And Duncan, just like Veronica, manages to be just self-righteous enough to make you feel bad.

-

Logan's poolhouse. How fantastic. At least he's got something loud and obnoxious in front of him - maybe that'll distract him enough to stop his mouth from moving more than you need.

He says, "This is why I wanted attack dogs."

Same old, same old. You don't think Logan stole the money. For one thing, you haven't noticed Logan to be subtle about anything in all the years you've known him. You don't really say anything about the fact that he's willingly helping you, because you don't want to think about that too hard.

-

It's not that you don't want her looking around; she'll probably find out what the fuck happened, and since you don't have Weevil's money you're all about that.

It's mostly that with her very presence, you become someone slightly different, so subtly that, like how Duncan called you a jackass, you don't notice except with how you're more pissed off than before she was there. Except now you're pissed off at yourself.

That's okay. It won't last. You'll be pissed off enough at Aaron later that this won't even register. Like usual.

-

11.

This week, as far as you're concerned Logan Echolls doesn't exist, and you're perfectly happy with that. He probably is too.

-

12.

You see her walking down the hallway handcuffed, and really, it's payback, it's karma. You don't feel bad at all because why should you; she deserves it. She deserves it for everything that she's not arrested for, but who cares. It's the only thing that brightens your day, since your locker's been wallpapered with tabloids, Veronica Mars handcuffed, lead away. You don't feel a bit of guilt, and later you'll be sorry about that.

Veronica only twinges on your radar for about five minutes. A good laugh, a joke about restraints. It's nice of her to be so convenient.

-

You listen to Logan talk about Lilly, as the guidance counsellor attempts to explain his feelings by reading her calendar full of platitudes. You listen to him and you know who he is. You listen to him and know he says he blames you, but Logan blames himself. Your name just happens to be the second or third one in a long list. Obviously the long-term effects of grief haven't been kind; Logan still blames everyone.

You're a little shocked to hear him call you his friend, but stranger things have happened. You're not shocked that somehow it's your fault, or that he uses the past tense. It's what makes you keep the radio on.

-

13.

"How's Logan holding up?"

As Wallace asks you about Logan, you find yourself able to answer; it's not the strangest thing that could happen. You were his friend, you were close once. You knew each other well, once, at any rate. Besides. Obviously Logan's not doing well. Obviously. Lots of people aren't.

The thing with Yolanda is ancient history, and you don't feel bad about telling Lilly about Logan kissing her now. You did feel bad for telling her at the time. You're starting to feel bad for Logan a lot.

-

When he comes to your door he looks exactly the same as when he drove back from Tijuana at four in the morning drunk to find the police had barricaded the Kane house, and the news stations were already camped outside. Logan didn't even get to see her until the video was released on the internet.

-

14.

You're a private detective, you usually know when people aren't telling the truth, and you usually don't believe them anyway. Logan seems to believe his mother is really out there.

Your first instinct is to laugh in his face, and this time, you feel bad about it right away, because he tells you he wants you to find his mother. You want to laugh because it's kind of terrible that he's desperate enough to come to you for help. It's the first time he's been to you and your dad's apartment, though, and a little part of you wants to point it out, and how he still looks over his shoulder to make sure no one sees him come in.

You're a marshmallow; the laughter wouldn't be real. You say instead, "Come inside, okay?"

You even feel bad for him when he says,"Y'know, I just need to know she's okay."

-

"Any news?"

You almost wish there was, because he's going to get enough bad news that even a bit of good news for a second would be nice.

But then, it's just another case. You tell Logan, "despite popular opinion, you can't beat the truth out of people."

Later, you'll feel really bad for saying that. At the time, you just feel a little relieved he seems to be fighting for something, even if it's with you.

-

15.

It's weird, to be truly grateful to Veronica Mars, but with your mother gone, she's really the only one left you can ask for help, that you can turn to. That might suck, but hey. At least she's someone.

-

It's weird, to truly want to help Logan, but you know what it's like not to have anyone. Anything is better than watching Logan sit and pretend that if he just waits long enough, everything will be fine.

-

Even with everything else that the two of you have gone through, as Trina walks away, both of you are caught helpless.

-

16.

Logan's not in school, and you're not in school all that much. Listening to interrogation tapes while going about the routine of your day makes you only a little queasy - baking for Wallace and putting on make-up for Leo kind of offsets the complete horror of bombarding yourself with lies. You think you're finally getting somewhere. You're wrong.

-

17.

The fact that she has a file on you that she's sure is airtight should make you feel guilty; instead, you have to just remind her that maybe Lilly wouldn't have wanted her best friend to turn out a horrible person. You might have lied, you might have done a lot of shitty things, but none of them was as bad as taking all the people that Lilly loved and turning them into suspects.

You almost wish that you'd never come to the office, but then Veronica actually does a nice thing, refusing to take money for not finding your dead mom. Your dead mom. You're never going to get used to that.

You say, "thanks." You really mean it.

You don't know whether she's unhealthily obsessed, psycho, or whatever. You believe her when she says, "I loved Lilly; maybe if I didn't then I could let this go." She's probably telling you the truth, but then, if she wasn't, you wouldn't be able to tell anyway.

You know that she's going to use whatever you tell her about Duncan in her investigation - there is no such thing as trust or cone of silence when it comes to Veronica. You have to tell her anyway, because for some reason, you trust her even through the fog your life has become.

You've had doubts about people before - there's no people like show people, after all - but none of those doubts can prepare you for the doubts that Veronica, apparently, has had for a year and a half.

-

18.

Logan joking with you is almost as off-putting as his new not-quite-hysterical lapses. You smile at him, for the effort as well as for the joke.

-

It's funny, you don't think Veronica is much like Lynn. You jump to the rescue anyway, without thinking, and punch the guy threatening her like you never punched Aaron. It feels good.

-

19.

The two of you manage to be both awkward and hesitantly friendly, using Duncan to have something to say and a reason to look each other in the face, even if it is some weird moment in which nothing is sure, even if it is more pleasant than the rest of the day. You manage it just as well as you managed spiteful and all-out-warring for over a year.

The worst part is that neither of you has any idea what's changed.

-

Weevil, even, gets more trust from Veronica than you will. That should mean something to you, but funnily enough?

-

You manage not to show all the horror you feel while Logan's father kicks the shit out of some jackass, you manage to keep your face at least partly impassive. What nearly does it is the fact that Logan doesn't look surprised.

It's not a perfect world. You still picture that guy as his nose was bleeding, but then Logan says he'll drive you home. It's normal enough that you can nearly stop thinking.

-

20.

Oh yes, your car. Somehow it's a little endearing that you can't quite make Logan act as nasty as you know he can. Somehow it's also a little hot. You know he thinks it's hot that you can fix your own car, and that you chop off Dick's banter with one fell swoop.

You should probably be worried that his lame, "come on, guys," is the closest he's probably capable of admitting emotions, right now. You still hold out some hope.

-

Veronica is so hot, you're actually completely engrossed in the moment, and in the girl's bathroom, no less. Wonders never cease.

-

A real date. Somehow it's a little weird that Logan's dad thinks you're good for him. It'll get worse.

-

21.

You really like when Logan doesn't talk.

Later, you won't.

-

You really like that Veronica's not a talker.

Later, you won't.


addendum: one reason why sometimes a bad idea is also the best one.

You're so pleased to see Logan that even your ribs don't hurt anymore. You're just pleased he came to *you*.

-

You have to drive to Veronica, because there's no one left.