Logan woke up hard.
He was a healthy, seventeen year old boy, so the actual erection didn’t bother him at all. All it meant, really, was that he was still alive. What irked him, what really got under his skin and made him want to sharpen his nails so he could just scratch it out, was the face behind his eyes and the name on his lips when he did so.
Veronica fucking Mars.
Just thinking the name, picturing her more clearly, made him groan into his pillow and wrap his fist around his aching dick. Hard and throbbing and eager for more. Again. He gave himself a sharp tug and threw the blankets off, rolling out of bed.
It was the fourth morning in a row and he was getting sick of it.
He didn’t sleep in the pool house anymore.
She was in his dreams, sneaking into his stray, unconscious daytime thoughts, unbidden memories popping up at the most inconvenient times, a shadow in the school hall that somehow disappeared just as he approached, a blushing face if he ever caught her eye in the distance. She would not leave him alone.
It wasn’t like he had become some lovesick puppy following her around from class to class, but he had suddenly developed a morbid fascination with tracking her down and studying her. Trying to understand what made her tick, what made her move, what made her sneak into enemy territory, tie them up, and screw them so hard their brains shot out their dick.
Okay, so she hadn’t exactly tied him up – oh god, he wished – but the blindfold counted.
And whenever he managed to corner her, catch her unawares as she skulked from class to class, carpark to locker to office to wherever the hell she disappeared to and couldn’t be found, she always blushed. A subtle flooding in her cheeks and a panic in her eyes, until he managed to open his mouth and let the usual venom pour through.
He wondered about the state of her health when sarcasm and insults made relief ease into her muscles.
Probably wasn’t any more or less healthy than the fact that their shared animosity, the anger and the pettiness, made his fantasies more intense, made him want her more. It wasn’t about puppies and flowers and brightly colored wrapped packages. It wasn’t about what was good for her or him.
He didn’t want to love her, he wanted to fuck her out of his system and forget her.
Something easier said than done when his dreams were peppered with wide-eyed, petite blondes who snapped comments at him like a chained whip. – And, oh god, he wished that, too –
The water pressure in his shower was set to hard, just like him, merciless and unforgiving. He let his hand hover over the cold tap for mere seconds before giving up, knowing it would be useless, then he leaned his forehead against the cool tiles, hot water battering the back of his neck and spine, bouncing and flowing in rivulets down to the curves of his ass and around his thighs, snaking down his legs.
He tried to think about random girls, Shelley, Madison, Meg, fuck, even Caitlin, the usual line up, the brief fantasies, but his jaw tightened and his cock throbbed in frustration. He reached further, dragging up forgotten scenes in movies, Jessica Alba in a cowgirl stripper costume gyrating against a pole, that brunette Buffy chick lifting her top in the uncut Eurotrip, Angelina in any rotation, but mostly with guns, Jennifer Garner, also with guns, - ooh, Jessica Alba with guns – but the tired old Hollywood standards didn’t always do anything for him. Too many visits to too many sets had destroyed large and small screen magic early on.
And then, to stave off the inevitable, he even sank as low as to plunder his memory. The long locked images of Lilly Kane.
Fuck, she’d even gotten to those too, because Lilly’s face swam and morphed, the memory scent of her sex clouded with images of Veronica floating above him.
Then it was over. Logan’s fingers tightened painfully and he gave into the real reason he was there. Tiny blonde bitches with smart mouths and hot little bodies that moved under his fingers. He hated himself for letting her get to him, for getting off to the memory of her, the very thought of that girl on her knees in front of him, cheeks hollowed out and eyes glaring at him.
It was vicious and brutal, a tug of war argument with himself as he yanked, hard and rough, not caring to be gentle. If this is what his dick wanted, then it had to take it however the fuck he wanted to give it. He flicked his thumb over the end, the little slit, and spread the foreskin.
“Fuck you.” He groaned it as he punished himself, turning it to honest pain. “You stupid, fucking…”
His release splattered against the wall and he closed his eyes.
The question of why was never really far from his mind. Not when he woke up, not when he ate breakfast, not when he drove to school and not when he watched her bump shoulders with that new kid she cut down from the pole, the basketballer.
He had, for all intents and purposes, made her life a living hell. He’d all but ensured that she would never even look at him in a kind way again, let alone crawl up his naked body in the middle of the night. She should not, for any conceivable reason, want to jump him or any of his bones. She should be plotting to break them instead.
Which left the only plausible explanation. She had some devious scheme, some nefarious plot to ruin him. Maybe she’d planted bugs while she was there. Maybe she had rigged the room to explode... and was waiting a week before detonating.
Jesus Logan, he shook his head to clear it, you’re going crazy. Now stop it.
He watched her walk down the hall; apparently oblivious to him and the maelstrom of thoughts she’d created.
Apparently, Hollywood was wrong, the devil did not wear Prada. The devil wore butch black boots and tiny little skirts that showed off slender, pale thighs he could just about feel climbing his waist, and dark hoodies his fingers itched to unzip and peel from her shoulders.
Maybe her ultimate plan wasn’t anything as complicated as hidden wires or dastardly motives. Maybe she was working with the simple goal of driving him insane.
And she was succeeding.
“Hello?” A hand clicked rudely in front of his face, fingers snapping him to attention. “Yo, Echolls, you awake?”
“Yeah.” He shook his head again and focused on the person in front of him. “Sure. What’ve we got now? Biology?”
“Could you be any more obvious?” Dick glared at him through a sea of messy bangs. “Why don’t you just make out with her in the hallway? What is it with that skank, anyway?”
Logan cuffed the back of his head, maybe a little harder than strictly necessary.
“Why don’t you ask your dad?” And Dick began to fight back good naturedly as they hustled through the hall. “I hear he’d know.”
His notebook sat blank in front of him as he ignored the teacher in the front of the room.
Two rows in front of him, one to the left, sat Veronica. And he was in the perfect position to watch her without her noticing. Her skirt rode up her thigh as she sat in the chair and Logan’s eyes kept drifting down to the pale flesh that pouched against the lip of the seat.
He wanted to touch her again.
And she wasn’t helping.
For her part, Veronica was apparently doing everything in her power to continue driving him crazy. Her fingers played idly with her pen, twirling it around long, slender digits, sliding fingernails up the base of it, tapping it in a staccato rhythm against the edge of the desk. When someone sent a glare her way, Logan watched Veronica thrust the pen under the desk, pressing the half chewed lid into the soft skin at the side of her thigh.
He bit back the groan as he watched the indentation take form, the pink skin bleached white with the pressure, light scratches left in the wake that flooded red with blood when she dragged the pen away. All of a sudden, her hand moved swiftly to sit primly on the top of the desk, slapping the pen down hard, and Logan lifted his eyes to see hers glaring at him.
He’d been caught and he grinned.
She nearly snapped her neck; she turned back to the front of the class that quickly.
Five minutes later, she hadn’t changed position once, he was watching, but then she rustled her shoulders. He smiled as she sat up straighter, fidgeted with the pen some more, and then reached down to tug the hem of her skirt down her legs.
It moved, maybe, half an inch.
Her shoulders remained tense, her spine ramrod straight as she stared at the front of the class and he knew he’d gotten to her. He knew she could still feel him watching. Carefully, slowly, delicately, he tore the corner of his notebook, accusingly blank and free of any notes, and began to scrunch it up into a little ball between his fingers.
Perfect precision aiming had it curving in a high arc towards her desk. It sailed over her shoulder, slipping beautifully between the strands of her hair, and landed right in the middle of her book. The sides of her jaw tightened and her hands clenched into little fists, but she didn’t turn around.
Five minutes after that, she raised her hand and asked to be excused.
Logan watched her gather her books and scurry out of the classroom without looking back. It felt like success.
It was wrong.
He knew it was wrong. There was nothing right about it. Somewhere along the line it had gone from puzzling out the whys and wherefores, to a more subtle fantasy, and then bam, headfirst into all out obsession as he could not get Veronica Mars and all her milky thighed short skirtedness out of his head.
Really, it was all her fault.
When he’d first woken up that night, half hazy and in the middle of a dream, his brain and his dick had automatically registered the blindfold and had let loose with simultaneous whoops of delight, even as a small segment of logic had tried to worm itself into his thinking.
Somebody had snuck into his pool house, taken away his sight, and then crawled on top of him. Before he’d even been able to demand an explanation she’d begun to draw the expected response out of him. He was a Hollywood star’s son, two of them really, and as hollow as it sounded, he never really questioned the girls that threw themselves at him at various times in his life.
He hadn’t questioned it since he was thirteen.
As his hands had flattened themselves over her, feeling the warmth rising to her skin from his touch, his nostrils had picked up the scent of Lilly’s perfume and his brain had beaten him senseless with a confusing blend of images.
Fleeting, contradictory images.
She’d been a mixture of confused, shy, nervous, but with a determined purpose that wouldn’t be swayed. In Logan’s experience, girls who treated sex like a mission, like a job that had to be gotten through, weren’t really the inexperienced type. And the blushing virgins who needed to be led rarely ever tied anyone up in the middle of the night and jumped them without notice.
He’d wondered, of course he’d wondered, picturing all sorts of girls in his head. Blonde hair, red hair, brunette, tanned skin, pale and freckled, small upturned pug nose, pointed sleek roman nose, cupids bow mouth or full pouty lips.
Even as all these had flown through his head, picturing any and all girls he’d ever come into contact with and cataloguing them against the feel of the one is his hands and on his hips, his brain had whispered the name… Veronica… small, slender, tiny, determined… bing, bing, bing!… he couldn’t quite let himself believe it.
It wasn’t like he didn’t know she was hot. That was a given. Every guy in school, no matter how much they publicly decried her, had checked her out at least once. She was definite spank bank material and Logan had indulged in more than one or two fantasies along that direction. Early, innocent Veronica and the later, smarter, sassier, bitchier version, either/or and in one confusing dream even both.
But reality was reality and Logan knew, without a doubt, that the last place he was ever going to see Veronica Mars was in his bedroom riding him like a rodeo bull. He’d made sure of that in the last year. So, even as his brain kept hitting him over the head, it’s a match! See? See? Bingo! he hadn’t truly believed that the female person letting him flip her over and making her writhe underneath him was her.
Veronica hated him, it was well known that he hated her, so logically it stood to reason that the last person’s clit he would have been cleaning with his tongue would be hers.
Yet, that very second she spoke, it had all come crashing down on him. Months of pent up frustrations, anger, betrayal, the way she just seemed to walk all over everything and anything to get what she wanted, even and especially him, and just when he’d managed to convince his overactive imagination that it wasn’t her… it was.
He’d been so angry and so turned on he couldn’t stop even as he fought her.
And it had been good.
So good that he found himself waiting on edge, nearly biting his nails, for some Freshman kid to deliver the note to her class. It had cost him a fifty, but he hoped it would be money well spent. The second he saw her walking down the hall towards the office, a look of blank confusion on her face and his note held precariously between two of her fingers, he knew it had been.
She didn’t even look sideways to see him waiting for her.
Veronica had always been petite, small and easily manhandled into a tickling session with Lilly as she struggled, so it was no surprise that his arm came around her with ease as he pulled her into the janitor’s closet, her body stiffening in protest.
His other hand came down over her mouth quickly as she bucked against him, her feet kicking back at his shins.
“Shh.” He whispered it against the back of her neck. “Veronica, it’s me.”
He could tell the instant she recognized him. Her entire body softened, relaxed from real fear into something close to resignation as his arms loosened their hold and she slid down to the floor. Yup, his brain amended, definite resignation as her foot slammed down hard on his.
“What the hell are you doing, Logan?” She hissed the words as she spun around, trying to adjust to the dark space they found themselves in. “You can’t just pull random girls into closets. Clemmons is looking for…”
He grinned at the fire in her eyes.
“No one.” The way her jaw slackened and her eyes narrowed told him she’d caught on quickly. “And you’re not just any girl. I wanted to talk to you and you seem to be in a severe avoiding me stage, so…”
The words trailed off as he shrugged.
Her jaw set as she began to take in the surroundings. Small, dark closet with Logan standing between her and the door. She had no way out and no other choice but to talk.
“Logan, come on.” She rolled her eyes at him, just the fainted hint of desperation clinging to her gesture. “What do you want?”
There was, perhaps, two and a half feet between them and he stepped forward, closing the distance a little further. She narrowed her eyes and her hands came to grasp at her elbows, hugging her arms in close to her body.
“What the hell do you think I want, Veronica?” He couldn’t quite keep the disbelief out of his voice. “I want to talk about what happened the other night.”
The shake of her head was instantaneous; he knew it.
“Nothing.” But not even she could get through the sentence without blushing. “Nothing happened…”
He couldn’t say he was surprised at her denial, just that she thought she could get away with it. She could not, honestly, believe that he would walk away and never mention it again, that it would pass without acknowledgement after everything they’d been through.
“Oh, really?” So he rewarded her absolute audacity by stepping forward again and reaching for the striped pink scarf wound around her neck. “Because I seem to remember something.”
The wool was slightly scratchy in his fingers, but he wound it around his wrist anyway, pulling it softly from around her shoulders. His eyes followed the slither of material until it revealed slender, pale flesh and the mottled, greenish blue healing bruise of his mouth.
“You’ve been wearing turtlenecks, jackets and scarves all week.” He supplied cheerily as she blushed under his scrutiny. “It’s a pity.”
He reached out again and ran the pad of this thumb over the slightly rough patch. The sudden tremble of her throat and the intake of her breath didn’t escape him, either. It was a light touch, barely even there, but he could feel heat between them.
“You…” Her own eyes dipped from his face to his neck, proudly displayed above the neck of a t-shirt. “You haven’t.”
“Yeah, that’s the beauty of it.” He couldn’t take his hand away, relishing in the throb of her pulse just under his thumb. “I bruise easily, but I heal quickly.”
He didn’t want to say that the last thing he wanted was to cover the whole thing up.
What he wanted to ask was if she remembered the way she’d flushed, moaning beautifully as she’d ridden him, pushed him down and forced him to submit to her own mouth, her own payback for his little gift on her neck.
“Why?” He found himself asking instead. “Why’d you do it?”
She flushed, cheeks turning crimson as she ducked her head.
“We went through this already. It’s not important.” She must have felt him huff, because her eyes darted up and he saw them fill with a steely resolve. “Just leave it alone, Logan, it doesn’t matter, okay? It’s inconsequential.”
The space between them became almost negligible when he stepped forward again. He could feel her breath on his face.
“I think I need to check my dictionary, because last time I looked ‘inconsequential’ doesn’t lead to nights like that.” He leaned forward, too close, and his fingers held her neck still as his mouth came close to her ear. “Do you remember it, Veronica? I do. You came eight fucking times and it was beautiful.”
The hot, silky puffs of air on his face hitched and she tried to hide the small moan in the back of her throat, but he’d caught it. It made him grin.
“Four.” She breathed quickly, shallowly. “It was four times.”
They were close, pressed against each other in the closet, and he had his hand wrapped around her neck, holding her there as he breathed on her ear. She felt frozen under his touch, as if she couldn’t move, but wanted to flee as fast as she possibly could anyway.
All he wanted was to keep her there.
“I knew it.” He couldn’t stop the smug, gleeful tone in his voice and he watched the way his breath rustled the small hears on the side of her neck. The way it made her shiver. “Close your eyes, Veronica.”
“Huh?” She seemed to snap out of it, turning her head to face him. “What? Logan…”
“I did it for you.” He reminded her quietly with another stroke of his finger up the cartilage poking out of her throat. “More than, so you can at least do that much.”
She bit her lip, little white enamel buds that pressed into the cherry red cushion of her lower lip, and he all but cried to watch it. She looked nervous, scared to death, but she did it. Her lids closed and Logan closed his teeth gently on the edge of her lobe.
He gave it a small tug, playful, and the edges of her fingers twitched.
“I want to do it again.” He whispered. “I want to do you again.”
“Logan…” It came out like a moan and he could feel her making him hard again. “Wait…”
But he really didn’t want to and she still had her eyes closed.
“I’ve been waiting.” He growled it lightly as he nuzzled the sensitive area of her neck, just below her ear, teasing her with it. “Ever since you left me there. It’s been days and I can’t get you out of my head.”
To prove his point, he took another step, effectively pushing her backwards, pushing right up into her space. She had to feel him, all of him; she had to know exactly what he meant when it pressed into her hip. A deep thud sounded and he felt the reverberation of her back hitting the shelves behind her.
“God, do you even remember?” He mouthed the tendon under his lips, sucked it ruthlessly until she squirmed against him. It wasn’t nice or tender. “That wasn’t just sex, Veronica, that was good sex. Really good.”
He was past the point of caring if she took that information and used it against him. She felt good and it was all her fault. His memory hadn’t been playing tricks at all, she actually did sound and feel like that, all breathy and caught and soft and needy.
His knees dipped down and forward until his hips hooked under the bones of hers and she ended scrambling up, moving to escape the pressure in the only way she could, until her backside crawled onto the bench and her legs jutted out.
“I remember. I…” Her breath caught in her throat when his teeth bit down gently on the front of her neck. “Oh god, I remember…”
Logan swallowed a moan and let his hands fall down, dropped them from her neck so that he could grab her knees and spread them, so he could wrestle his hips between her legs and thrust. It was automatic and he could barely control himself as he felt her respond, pushing her own hips forward against his in desperate little movements.
“Jesus Christ, Mars.” It came out as a harsh whisper as he sucked a line down the front of her collarbone. “What are you doing to me?”
She jerked against him.
“Me?” But it was only a halfhearted, automatic protest as her hands pulled him closer by his upper arms. “I’m not doing… You’re the one… with the staring… and the… paper… and, god, Logan…”
There was something decidedly wrong about the two of them hiding in a closet and groping like desperate teenagers. Truthfully, it was easier when they hated each other and he could expect a seething rejoinder for every comment he dished out.
“Please.” He was almost begging as his hands curved around the side of her knees and began to slide up the outsides of her thighs. “Please complete the fantasy? Tell me you’ve got white cotton underwear under that skirt?”
The last thing he expected was for her, sharp tongued, quick witted, sarcastic Veronica Mars, to collapse forward in a giggling heap. Her fingers curled into the sides of his shirt and she smothered her face into the hollow of his neck.
“Green.” She eventually managed, gasping for breath through laughter. “With little cartoon rabbits.”
His brain couldn’t even process the fact as all he felt was hot panting air against the front of his throat and her shaking form against his.
“Fuck.” He groaned and leaned his head back. “Bunnies are hot.”
It was, apparently, the right thing to say as she rewarded him with a hot mouth closing over his neck, peppering this throat with sucking little kisses that began to heat up the more his hands rose on her legs.
“What do you want, Logan?”
Her words were directed at the skin of his ear and he shivered with it. He wondered if she realized exactly what she was doing, that she was showing a softer side of herself that she hadn’t even let through that night. He could still remember the fire in her eyes, the hatred, and the vigor with which they’d both finished things.
“I want this.”
He reached up, grabbing the back of her head with one hand and slamming his mouth down hard on hers, giving her no time to protest as he thrust his tongue past her lips. She didn’t hesitate in giving back, going quickly from defense to attack, and it turned into a struggle, a fight for control.
“I want you.” He growled. “I want to watch this time.”
She moaned low in her throat.
“I want to see you, I want to see your body, I want to see everything.” His free hand slid up the back of her shirt, fingering the knobs of bone along her spine until he came into contact with the firm strap of a bra. “I want to be in control this time.”
The clasp unsnapped easily.
“I want to blindfold you.” He felt the tension rise in her and knew he was going too far, but his brain forgot to tell his mouth. “God, I want to tie you down, Veronica.”
The struggle between them suddenly turned serious and her body closed in on itself, hunching down protectively and inching him out and away, even as her hands began to push at him and her eyes snapped open. He fell back, surprised, as she practically jumped away from him.
“I’m sorry.” She gasped. “I… I can’t…”
“What? What did I…?”
“Look.” Veronica closed her eyes and her face pointed down to the floor for a long second before she looked up and met his eyes. “Whatever you think of me, Logan, whatever you say to your friends, that’s not me. I’m not like that. I can’t do this.”
And then it clicked. All the time he’d spent wondering why she would look past their current history, past all his transgressions against her, and the second he’d relaxed she threw them in his face.
“I just… I can’t.”
He watched the door close after her and stood, alone, in the janitor’s closet with a hard on strong enough to cut titanium steel and the knowledge that Veronica was going to drive him crazy.
Game, set and what was about to be match, to Logan Echolls.
He had to wait fifteen minutes before it was safe enough to leave the closet without scaring half the student population and some of the teachers. The bell sounded in the next minute and Logan found himself surrounded by hallways of insipid, clueless kids going about their day without an inkling of the shift that was going on right under their noses. They leaned into each other and gossiped, their mouths spouted meaningless words.
“Dude!” Dick slapped his shoulder. “Man, you missed it!”
Logan blinked his annoyance away at the eager sound of the boy’s voice.
“Veronica Mars was hauled out of class into the Vice Principal’s office and no one knows what he said to her, but she came out pissed as hell, she totally lost her fucking shit.” Dick didn’t see the way Logan paled. “Then she just left. Mr. Daniels caught her heading towards the parking lot during class and tried to pull his teacher crap on her.”
He could feel his nerves ratchet up in the drawn out tension of Dick’s narrative, the bubble in his voice gave away the big reveal about to happen.
“Apparently she just ripped right into him and told him where to stick his rules, told him to go to hell and exactly how to get there and, man, from all descriptions, it wasn’t a very comfortable ride. Then she left anyway.”
There was a slight hint of admiration in the story and Logan paused to consider ribbing Dick on it, highlight the fact that he was almost praising Veronica Mars, but he chose not to. The story left him slightly confused. He’d known she was upset when she left, but even out of sorts Veronica never really lost control like that. Something had freaked her out and the job hadn’t been done halfway.
“I’d pay anything to know what Clemmons said.” Dick mused. “Wouldn’t you?”
“Um…” His brain began to spin in a million different directions. “Sure, whatever.”
For the first time that week, when Logan turned off his light and slipped beneath his covers, he did not fight the face in his head or the name on his lips.
He sees her kneeling in the grass, her head bowed down and intensely focused on the ground underneath her. Long blond hair pours down her back, her spine ramrod straight, and her hands rest placidly on the knobbly outcrops of her sun tinged, pink knees as they poke out of her soccer shorts.
Several short steps bring him close and he falls down next to her.
“Hey, what are you doing?”
When she looks up at him, her face is serious and straight, incongruous and disconcerting in her twelve-year-old frame. She looks like she’d be more comfortable laughing.
“Pulling wings off flies.” It’s an emotionless, steady, bland response. “And watching them die.”
The mere suggestion of it leaves a queasy feeling in the pit of his stomach.
“Wanna grab a milkshake instead? My treat.”
Her brow furrows in confusion and she studies him, up and down, blue eyes blinking for several seconds.
“But this is what you do.” She insists. “You like tormenting the defenseless. I thought you’d enjoy this.”
He can hear tiny, inconsequential buzzing from the blades of grass in front of her and he looks down to see a small, squat black fly body squirming in pain. The buzzing rises to what he imagines is a deafening scream in the insect world.
“Not today.” The assurance tastes sickly on his lips. “There are other things we can do.”
“Really?” Her eyes light up as she turns to face him, feet shuffling in the grass. “Like what?”
Kneeling opposite each other, their differences are noticeable. At twelve, he’s shorter than her, skinny and weed like, where she’s glowing with health and the exercise of the game she’s just played. He reaches forward and slides his hand through hers, lifting it up so that their fingers meld in the sparkle of the sun.
When he leans forward, she doesn’t move away and his lips brush against hers.
They both sigh.
“Oh.” She breathes. “Okay.”
Shy smiles bloom on brightly flushing cheeks, both of them, and there might even be the hint of a giggle between them.
A loud boom sounds and her features shift from pleasure to pain in the slightest fraction of a second. Her grip on his hand tightens to an agonizing, vice like clench as she struggles to her feet, pulling him up as she goes.
“Quick!” She hisses at his clumsiness. “We have to go.”
It sounds again, a deadly thick and loud crashing that shakes the earth underneath them.
But he can’t and her hands slips from his as she flees.
The sounds crystallize into footsteps and he realizes that whatever is behind him has to be large and heavy, solid enough to create physical shockwaves that crack the field, a sliver that races along the grass turning quickly into a crevasse of deep, dangerous proportions.
Frozen in place, Logan turns on his feet to face the creature and the loud, crashing footsteps intensify inside his ears, beating, pulsing, magnifying as they slip from a boom, boom, boom into a rhythmic thump, thump-thump, thump, thump-thump of a heart beating and he finds himself looking at a hallway.
Veronica rounds the corner, her hands slapping against the wall to provide the balance that stops her running smack into it, her breath pants hard and her eyes are wide as she catches sight of him.
“Logan!” She gasps in delight, grabbing his arm on the way past. “Quick, we have to hide.”
He allows her to pull him into a coat closet, the thick furs and heavy arms cushioning them both as they breathe against each other.
“What was that?” He whispers. “What the hell was…?”
“Sh.” Her finger lands on his mouth, halting his words as she glances towards the soft sliver of light poking underneath the door. “You’ll give us away. What was what?”
At fifteen he’s taller than her, she’s stopped growing and he’s started, lengthening out, filling the stretches of his body with lean muscle, even as hers has softened, sleekened, metamorphosed into something soft and fragile.
He’s intensely aware of the feel of her body pressed into his amid the mothballs of the Kane’s winter coats.
“C’mon, you losers!” Lilly’s voice echoes through the small voice. “This is my house, I’ll find you eventually!”
Logan can’t stop the little whine at the sound, long lost and never able to be forgotten, but before it goes too far, Veronica’s fingers cover his mouth again and she’s hissing at him to be quiet, her forehead falling against his chest in a tremble of giggles.
His hands land on the soft-hard planes of her shoulders and when she looks up, her eyes are questioning and her mouth splits open in a tremble.
He bends down to kiss her, hard this time, hungry, and his tongue licks at the seam of her lips. She doesn’t push him away like he expects, her hands rise against him, crawling around to the back of his neck and pulling him closer.
Her small breasts push into his chest and the bone of her hip juts into his.
That’s when the heartbeat threading the air around them deepens, becomes louder, more threatening, and Veronica turns to stone in his hands.
Her whisper is spiked with panic and she twists in his arms, clawing at the coats that surround them, frantically digging a path as she shifts deeper and deeper into the closet.
His call goes unheeded and she slips away, he’s left fighting his own battle against a thousand different textures, mohair and mink, arms that come alive and wind around his throat and chest. He struggles, but he can’t follow her, wherever she went, and he’s left to listen to the approaching steps.
Just as the door cracks open, he turns to face it, reaching up to tear a grisly, fur covered limb from his face. He throws it away from him and the arc of his arm glows into daylight as he blinks. His missile turns into a well-aimed milk carton sailing through the air.
He’s carried away by the group ethic; the all-powering mass that roars up beside, behind and in front of him, people gathered en masse that jeer and taunt and mock. Too late, he watches the final moment of his accomplished throw as it sails at his target and he knows before it gets there who it is.
She’s hunched over herself, arms high up over her head and face turned from the crowd, a small whimper can be heard as pink strawberry milk bursts out over her shoulder and sprays down her back. The cheering gets louder and more violent and he can only hear one word.
It echoes from her lips and no one else can see it. What he sees, when he turns his head, is ugly, vicious faces, monstrous glee and ruthless animalization. He can practically see their jaws lengthen; their teeth sharpen as their cries turn into predatory howls.
And Veronica, cowering in the middle as her feet are wiped out from under her and she goes down like a sack of potatoes in the blood hungry mob.
Logan feels the growl rumble out of his chest, bubbling up his throat as he pushes forward and reaches for her arm, pulling her into his arms as he bares his teeth to the surprised onlookers, snarling a way through the crowd. They part like the red sea, but he can smell the adrenaline in them, the resentment, and their lust for the kill.
He lopes to his car and deposits her struggling form in the rear seat and even as her claws dig into his back, his nostrils pick up the keen scent of her blood, it pricks at him, itches, like needles that sting.
His whimpers rise unbidden as he crawls in after her, nuzzling the side of her neck until she opens to him and he can lick her wounds, great gaping gashes that mar her throat. Her blood is hot and coppery on his tongue.
The thumping returns and her passivity disappears, she pushes against him and her voice returns in a high, yelping whine. Again and again, stretched out as she tries to pull her body out from under his, tries to scratch her way out of the closed door.
His attempts to hold her still do nothing but tear strips of flesh off her body and he watches as red pools in her hollow hips.
“No!” It comes growled and whimpered at the same time. “No, no, no, no, no, no!”
“Veronica!” He hisses it through large, meaty canines. “Veronica!”
But she’s not listening and she’s not calming down.
Logan woke already upright, soaked in sweat. The sheets clung around his waist and he gasped for air as he took in the dark recesses of his bedroom. Slowly, the world came back into focus and he tried to make sense of what he’d just seen.
“You keep this up.” He looked down to his lap. “And I’m going to cut you right off, do you hear me?”
Even the walls looked different when he walked through the school and he eyed them with suspicion. He wasn’t entirely sure if it was he or everyone else in the world, but nobody was acting normally. They laughed a little too loudly amongst themselves, whispered a little too viciously into the ears of their friends, even kids he was sure he couldn’t care less about seemed to look at him sideways.
He remembered his dream and shivered, they were like pack animals and nothing made his skin crawl more than crappy reminders of crappy teen movies starring Lindsay Lohan. Hollywood had a lot to answer for.
True to form, because obviously nothing was going to return to normal until she had driven him completely insane and he was singing duets with Cornflakes while eating with plastic cutlery, Veronica ran into him on her way to class.
She blushed as she faced him; it ran up from her throat all the way around her cheeks.
It was blood on her neck all over again and he licked his teeth convulsively, trying to get rid of the stale taste of copper that had never really been there to start with.
“Hey.” And he could have kicked himself with how lame he sounded. “How… how are you?”
It occurred to him, in that moment, that he didn’t have anything to say to her. He hadn’t spoken to her, not really, in over a year. He didn’t know what to say or even how, not any more. The small quirk of her lips told him that she had picked up on the sudden awkwardness.
“Just peachy.” She let him off the hook. “And almost late for class, so I should…”
Before she could finish gesturing past him and down the hall, he caught her arm. The sudden electricity of actually touching her shot through him. Things would be so much easier if he didn’t have to speak at all, didn’t have to dance around in stupid circles.
“Wait.” He whispered. “Give me five fucking minutes, at least.”
The thing that surprised him, that kept surprising him, was that she did wait, every time he asked she gave him the benefit of the doubt. One of these days, if he didn’t change, she was going to stop and he didn’t want to explore the vague sense of loss that gave him.
“Well?” Her tapping foot gave off the impression of impatience, but the rapid flicking of her eyes belied her nervousness. “Okay, great, thanks Logan. This was very illuminating, I’ve got to go.”
She gathered her books more tightly against her chest and pushed past him, moving faster than necessary, but not fast enough. He caught her upper arm in his hand and pulled her back, bracing her against a row of lockers. He didn’t look at the two students nearby who gave him dirty looks as she bit her lip down on whatever angry retort she was going to spit out.
But it was there, he could see the fire in her eyes and that, at least, was familiar and comfortable. He could deal with her anger.
“Stop running away from me, dammit.” He honestly didn’t care that the group of two inconvenienced kids had suddenly grown to four and then seven. “Why can’t you ever stay in the same room as me?”
Veronica looked pointedly down at her upper arm, at the vice of his thumb and fingers around her flesh, then back up at him.
“My first guess? Because a moving target is harder to hit.”
He tried to blink away the rest of his dream, milk cartons and animal ferocity.
“I’m not…” But his defense died easily on his lips. “You’re never going to forgive me for any of it, are you?”
Slowly, carefully, she covered his right hand with her own and then pried his fingers, one by one, from around her arm. Then she moved to his left hand, never taking her eyes from his.
“Give me one damn reason why I should.”
His hands were free in the air, empty after she’d released them, and his frustration curled them. The truth, and they both knew it, was that there was no reason, really, that all his acts in the time since they’d last been friends were unforgivable.
Logan was being backed into a corner, figurative or not, and being trapped was one thing he hated. And it might be true that his behavior towards her was vile, but the real truth was that all of his acts totaled still did not match her own betrayal.
A caged animal only has one option.
“One?” He asked casually as his right hand hovered between them, his fingers accentuating his speech. “I can think of four.”
Her eyebrows flew up as she caught his meaning, impossible to miss in the obscene twisting motion of his fingers, the wriggling pantomime of something altogether different.
“Thank you, Logan.” She smiled sweetly as her body seemed to relax right in front of his eyes, the hand still clutching her books against her lowered. “Thank you for reminding me what should have been painfully obvious to start with.”
Her free hand smoothed a non-existent wrinkle from the hem of her tee.
“You’re a dick and I’m so much better off without you. I hate you, you hate me, and it’s better that way. Have a nice life.”
Step one in Logan Echolls’ guide to seducing women: do not, under any circumstances, torment her cruelly for over a year. It severely hinders the goal.
He used his height to block her steps, breathing in to create a larger span of his chest as he bullied her back against the lockers.
“Just tell me why.” He hissed the words amid the growing grumbles of support at his back, the soft hushed ripples of an audience he didn’t want. “Why me? What? Were you looking for someone who hated you? Is that it? Did you want someone to hurt you that much?”
A flinch, brief and barely even there, passed across her face. It was gone quickly, too quickly, and if he’d blinked he might have missed it, but he didn’t. And he’d seen it.
“No, Logan.” Her steely eyes met his and held him frozen. “I chose you, because you don’t care enough to hate me. You were supposed to let it go, forget it ever happened. Use me and be used. That’s it. That’s all it ever was and I’m sorry if you thought it was more.”
Her words stung, even if he knew most of them were cover.
“So that’s it, then?” He felt physically ill. “That’s what you think of me? That I could just forget what happened between us and…?”
She didn’t even blink and he wasn’t exactly sure where her composure had come from.
“And why not?” A small, slightly bitter chuckle escaped her throat. “You’re the one person I know who has successfully done it before.”
For one brief second she wasn’t standing in front of him, glaring through whispered words that weren’t loud enough for the growing crowd to hear, even if the venom flowing between them was obvious enough to enjoy.
Her whole posture shifted in his eyes, she became taller as her stance relaxed, her face brighter as her expression exuded confidence and happiness, and her voice warm as she exclaimed over the necklace she’d helped him choose for Lilly’s sixteenth birthday.
Maybe he had done it before, but that didn’t mean he was going to do it again.
It was too late; she’d already raised her hand and pushed against his chest, taking advantage of his momentary silence and stillness to find her momentum. He made to follow her, breathing in to call her name.
“Man.” A hard grip tightened around his arm and pulled him back. “Don’t.”
The voice was unfamiliar, but the warning was clear.
“Who the…?” Logan didn’t bother struggling as he was pulled back against the lockers; much in the same way he’d just cornered Veronica. He watched her disappearing down the hall, lost to him again, before looking down at the face in front of him. “Oh, it’s you.”
“Yeah.” The new kid sneered at him. “Me. Just leave her alone, okay?”
He wrested himself from the kid’s grip and dusted off the sleeves of his shirt before looking up with a cocky expression.
“What’s it to you?”
“Maybe I’m just sick and tired of all the bullshit you and yours pull around here.”
Veronica’s name was never actually said, but it hung heavy in the words that were, Logan could practically see it.
“Who the hell do you think you are?”
“I’m her friend, dickweed.” He watched, as Wallace looked him up and down in an obviously contemptuous pantomime. “Who are you?”
The meaning was not lost.
“Listen, Fennel.” Logan sneered as he took a step forward, bringing his mouth closer to the ear of the only recipient of his words. “You’re new, so we’ll let this slide, but you know nothing about Veronica and me, not one thing. So don’t think you can just walk in here and order people about.”
He felt hands on his shoulders, pushing him away.
“You’re right.” Wallace all but spat. “I don’t know anything about you. And from what I’ve heard, I don’t really want to. She never told me what you did to her, you and all of her so called friends, but I know it’s something. And it’s not happening again, you got it? So whatever you’re planning now, just don’t. Go back to your lemmings and leave her alone. We’ll all be better off.”
Something about the words jarred in his head, made him blink, made him want to protest, but he didn’t. Any change in stance now would be admitting defeat and Logan Echolls did not admit defeat.
“I’m not planning anything, so you can go back to playing her little lap dog and stop worrying.” He even managed to find a chuckle somewhere. “God, the stories she must tell. Nobody did anything to her.”
“No.” The venom dripping from the answer was almost palpable. “Must’ve been some other dude’s crow bar smashing her headlights in. My mistake.”
It wasn’t anything he hadn’t replayed over in his head before. Only, this time, the memory of her flinch didn’t hold any form of retribution or triumph. For the first time all he saw was tired resignation and disappointment shining back at him, the scars of a thousand insults.
He pushed his way out of the confrontation and walked away, ignoring the hoots and catcalls of the crowd that had begun to thin after Veronica fled. But he couldn’t get the conversation out of his head.
His first reaction had been to claim that they’d done nothing to her, there had never been one big incident to draw the line and point at as the be all and end all of her dislocation from ousted 09er to true outsider, but suddenly that claim didn’t gel with him. Not at all.
Fear, she’d said, he’d heard it with his very ears, my fear.
Veronica Mars, old or new, did not fear anything.
He entered the room with just the slightest reluctance.
“I must say, Logan, I’m surprised to see you here.”
He nodded, biting down harshly on his discomfort. He didn’t look at the walls, at the desk, at the details. Details would be his undoing. His plan was to keep it brief, brief and impersonal. Get in, get the information, and get out. Simple, easy, nothing to it.
“Yeah.” His hand curled up around the bare skin at the nape of his neck and his forefinger twisted into the soft hair there, pulling slightly to feel the sting. “It’s… it’s been a while.”
“Well.” Miss James folded her hands into what he supposed was meant to be a comforting gesture on the top of her desk as she smiled. “Why don’t you sit down and tell me why you wanted this visit?”
Wanted was such a strong word, but he didn’t beleaguer the point.
There was no really easy place to start and his brain tried and rejected several opening sentences.
“Is this…?” He could practically see the hunger of the grief counselor wanting to get her hooks into the Troubled Young Boy She probably saw him in capitals, too. “Is this about Lilly?”
That anniversary had passed and he’d celebrated in his own way. He hadn’t needed a half qualified, minimum wage, high school social worker to deal with it.
“Well.” She tried again, softly and oh, so understandingly. “It might…”
Nervous fidgeting was a dead giveaway and one of his biggest problems. It had gotten him into more trouble than he cared to examine before and he was intensely aware of it as his fingers itched to move, to feel, to grate. He clasped tightly to the ends of the chair arms instead.
“Fear.” It came out blurted and sudden, too awkward to take back. So he tried to cover with a smile, leaning back with practiced ease. “What causes it?”
She looked stunned for just a second, her mouth slightly open, before she snapped it closed.
“I would say that fear is the human way of dealing with the unknown.” It sounded too much like a textbook, like a soft, pastel colored pamphlet in a doctor’s office, but it was what he’d expected from her. “Is this a class assignment? Because, I have to say, as much as I appreciate all the attention, I doubt very much that quoting me is going to count as a proper researched bibliography.”
Logan made the notch inside his head, but kept his face blank.
“The unknown?” He questioned. “That’s it?”
“If you want to get into broad generalizations, yes.” Her eyes crinkled at the edges as she studied him. “That’s what it all boils down to. If you examine a lot of the common fears: fire, spiders, abandonment, they all stem from a basic lack of knowledge about the source.”
“I’d have thought fire would be a fear of the pain, actually.”
A small smile curved her lips as she nodded at the barb.
“Yes, you could be right.” She continued. “But if you look at it another way, a lot of the pain induced fears, fear of fire, fear of falling from a great height, surgery, dismemberment, knives, could be seen as having two different sources. A secondary fear of death, which is, in itself, really the ultimate unknown, or possibly as a fear of that person’s lack of trust in their own reaction to it.”
“Huh.” Logan’s hand wandered back up to his earlobe and he began tugging on it. “So, how would one, hypothetically ‘get over’ a fear?”
“Well.” She paused and he could actually see the wheel turning behind her eyes. “That would depend solely on a case by case basis, depending on the particulars of each and every fear and phobia, but generally the Universally accepted method of controlling fear is to introduce the source of that fear in controlled amounts.”
Logan’s breath hitched in a cross between a cough and a disbelieving laugh.
“Throw an arachnophic into a pit of tarantulas? A pyrophobe into a burning building?”
His foot began tapping on the floor, agitated, and he saw her eyes flicker downwards once. He forced his toes flat inside his shoes, digging them in, and willed himself still.
“That’s a bit dramatic, Logan, but it’s the general idea, yes.” Her fingers steepled in a point on top of the desk and he noticed that the polish on her right index finger had been scratched. “Again, I repeat, this is just generalized theory. It’s not based on any specific case and shouldn’t be taken as advise for such. I said the same thing when asked last week…”
Oh, great, Logan refrained from rolling his eyes as he deepened the notch, way to engender student confidentiality.
“But isn’t it true that some fears have a genuine cause?” Tap, tap, stifle, innocent look. Logan smiled through his teeth. “Say, if someone had been in a fire and then became scared of it as a result, would the advice be the same? Jump right back in?”
Her eyes sparked interest and she sat up straighter in her chair.
“The human brain reacts to traumatic experiences in very different ways, certainly creating a phobia is one of them.”
Logan looked down at his lap before looking up, they were skirting the issue and he bit the proverbial bullet.
“What about sex?” The sentence seemed explosive, the aerodynamic result of his blurting it out without warning. “What about someone being afraid of sex who wasn’t before?”
“Logan.” She leaned forward in her chair, curiosity oozing out of her eyes, and he could practically see her licking her lips. “If you or one of your classmates is having trouble…”
He leaned forward in a mimic of her interest and reached out to tap her desk, one tap for each syllable.
“Hy-po-the-ti-ca-lly.” But there were still sparks going off in her eyes and he could just about see the look on Veronica’s face if he let her secrets spill because of a sloppy performance. Years of observation at his father’s knee had made him an expert at deflecting unwanted attention by causing defensiveness. “Keep up, Becky.”
Her irritation slammed up between them and she sat back.
“Miss James, Logan, please.” Her pen tapped against the arm of her chair. “Sex is a different matter altogether, especially if, as you suggest, said person hadn’t shown any real signs or symptoms of fear before hand. It would certainly seem as if a traumatic experience would be the cause of the problem.”
For the first time, Logan couldn’t breathe. Up until that moment, it had all been speculation, it still was, but he couldn’t help the sudden weight that had descended. There was something too final, too doomsday about the words playing out in front of him.
As if confirmation made it real.
His brain flashed a memory at him, not just of Veronica as he’d taken the blindfold off, her body stretched out and flushed, the sounds and tastes of her, but of the moments he’d deliberately pushed back into his subconscious, moments when she’d crossed from pleasure to something else. He’d felt it, but he hadn’t wanted to deal with it.
It went beyond mere nerves and it made his stomach roll.
“So…?” Even his voice was thick with not wanting to know. “What’s the advice then? Jump back on the horse and…?”
There was a brief flash of concern on her face before she covered it, he was used to spotting them on people before they turned it into something else, and he knew she hadn’t completely bought the hypothetical claim.
“Not at all.” She insisted, firmly but not unkindly. “In cases such as those, where there is any form of sexual trauma, blindly jumping into bed with someone just to get it over with is probably the last thing to do. The possibility for further scarring if the process is not successful, or if the chosen partner is somehow unwilling or unable to fully grasp the severity of the situation… it’s a very delicate process.”
Process was such a clinical word, he thought, but it was fitting. The entire, delicate, carefully worded conversation had suddenly become a minefield that they were both stepping through cautiously.
“Well.” He insisted firmly, cheerfully, as he planted his hands on the end of the chair arms and launched himself up. “Thanks for this. It was very illuminating.”
They paused halfway to the door and he saw weariness and worry in her eyes, the harsh truth of rules that protected him as a student, but made it impossible for her to do more, to follow through with something that might keep her up at night.
“Just hypothetical.” He reminded her with a sincerity he would deny had anyone asked. “Really, I promise that I, nor anybody I know, is in trouble.”
She nodded, resolute.
“My door is always open.”
He didn’t sleep that night.
His stomach revolted at the thought of swallowing the food in front of him, so Logan picked at the pizza instead, isolating a particularly suspicious slice of salami between his thumb and forefinger and lifting it off the slick stretch of cheese.
“What’s up, man?”
And, for once in his completely dulled existence, Duncan had actually picked up on the subtleties of a situation. It figured that he would do it just when Logan didn’t want him to.
“Nothing.” He lied. “Just not hungry.”
He had his left foot up on the bench, resting his wrist easily on his knee, and it made it easier to duck his head down away from Duncan’s scrutiny and look across the courtyard. Veronica sat not fifteen feet from them, completely and studiously ignoring him as he watched her, and he wondered if the laughter on her face when she talked to Wallace was real.
It had been a long time since he had really thought about how much she used to smile and laugh effortlessly.
A long time since he had let himself miss it.
“Hey.” He nudged Duncan’s shoulder a little too firmly. Curiosity had gotten the better of him, it always did. “Talked to Veronica lately?”
Next to him, Duncan took a deep breath before sighing.
“What? What has she done now?” He sounded annoyed. “Can’t you just leave her alone?”
That made Logan blink. If it had been too long since he’d wondered about Veronica, it had been even longer since Duncan had cared either way.
“No, I’m just thinking.” His finger scratched idly at his chin as he kept his voice casual. “Looks like she’s gotten over Toy Boy Troy pretty quick, huh?”
He watched the corners of Duncan’s mouth tighten and the muscles of his face jump.
“Drop it, Logan.” The warning was clear. “It’s got nothing to do with us, nothing to do with you.”
“Yeah, whatever man. Change of subject.” His tongue ran over the edge of his teeth in thought. “Her hair’s getting longer now, don’t you think?”
“Maybe.” The answer was accompanied by a dismissive shrug. “I don’t know.”
“You know, I always wondered why she cut it.” Not one to ever back down, Logan Echolls, even when the hints given were more clue-by-fours to the head. “Did you?”
Duncan screwed up his napkin and, even with the total blandness of his voice, the viciousness of the activity could not be denied. Hostility stirred underneath the surface and it made Logan sit up and take notice.
“Because girls do that sort of shit. What do you care so much?”
Logan shook his head, a brief gesture of denial that neither of them seemed to believe, but before he could respond with any well thought out distraction, Dick intervened.
“Dude, the new hair is totally hotter. Suits the skank, right?”
Both Logan and Duncan turned in the same instance, too quickly and too defensively.
“Shut up, Dick.”
It sat between them like surprise, like an awkward little revelation, and Duncan’s eyes narrowed.
“Oh,come on.” Dick continued to plead his case, ignorant of the tension just created. “Tell me you wouldn’t nail her? I mean, with enough antiseptic cream and double suited rubbers…”
Logan flattened his hands on the table, forcing them against the surface so they wouldn’t reach across and slap the idiotic glaze that continuously hovered over Dick’s face. Unfortunately, the control didn’t quite reach his mouth.
“Shut the fuck up, man, for the last time.”
And Duncan’s eyes shrunk another quarter of an inch, pupils sharpening into pinpoints.
“There something you wanna say, Logan?”
He pretended to breathe carefully as he steepled his fingers in front of him, examining them with great purpose.
“Nope, not at all.”
The conversation, as it was, was over and Logan had gotten the message quite clearly. The subject of Veronica was still a touchy one and if questioning the length of her hair got Duncan’s panties into a twist, then suddenly revealing her new found interest in investigating the Kama Sutra might be a little too much to handle.
Logan felt like a dirty old man as he waited.
He’d been waiting, hovering really, by the bathroom door for nearly ten minutes and either the school was a lot more tolerant than he initially supposed or it wasn’t a rare occurrence for a guy to be loitering near the girl’s toilets. Either way, it was a bit of a worry.
She saw him first.
The movement caught his eye and he turned to see her moving in a wide circle, changing course and heading in an entirely new direction. Her posture screamed defense, her arms narrowed into her torso as she tried to burrow a path through the other students.
A few quick skips and he was right behind her, slipping his arm underneath hers and around her waist.
Veronica’s spine curved into his chest as he pulled her against him and she fit into his body easily as she allowed him to sidestep them both off to the side.
“Logan.” Her voice came out quietly, flat and emotionless. “Let me go.”
“Hmm, let me think about it.” He pretended to consider the option as his hand trailed along her waist, he could feel her abdominal muscles bunch under his fingers, and then turned her by the hip so that her back was against the door. “No.”
One quick push and they both stumbled into the bathroom, out of the hall.
“Are you crazy?” Her passivity melted the second they were alone and she turned on him with a red face. “What part of ‘I’m not doing this with you’ do you not understand? The ‘not’, the ‘with’, or the ‘you’? Because all three of those concepts are vital.”
She hadn’t noticed his quick perusal of the room around them, the brief glance to make sure they were truly alone. Her eyes widened slightly when he stepped forward and reached out to lift the edge of her hair off her chin.
“The part where you keep saying you don’t want this.” And he could see her bite her lip out of the corner of his eye when he leaned in close to her ear. “But then you keep reacting like this.”
His fingers curled around the side of her neck and pulled her closer. It was a slow kiss, slower than any other they’d had so far. He gave her just enough room to pull back, but the slightly breathy gasp she gave and the way her lips split open for him told him that she wouldn’t.
“Logan.” She sighed it into his mouth. “We can’t keep…”
She stepped back again and he went with her, propelled her until they both hit the partition wall and he could feel her hips press into the tops of his thighs.
“Why not?” He asked the underside of her chin, mouthing the bone there until she reluctantly lifted her head, giving him better access to her throat. “It’s really fun.”
The creaking of the door behind him, followed by a loud gasp, made them both freeze.
Logan turned quickly, shoving his weight against it.
“Sorry!” He called cheerfully as his foot swept the floor for the little wooden doorstop. “Occupied.”
Veronica punched him in the arm and it carried more weight than he would have liked.
“That’s why!” She hissed. “The whole school’s going to know in about five minutes! Jackass.”
“Bullshit.” He responded casually, rubbing the tender area of his bicep. “She was, what, a freshman? She wouldn’t know our names if they were printed on our shirts. What are you worried about?”
Her eye roll was self-explanatory and he didn’t necessarily disagree with it. There was no such thing as anonymity at Neptune High for either him or Veronica, not after the past year, and they both knew it.
“Besides.” He went for a different tack. “What do you care, anyway?”
That was guaranteed to get a reaction, if anything in the world was, and he could see her begin to bristle. Her shoulders lifted and her eyes narrowed in frustration.
“I don’t, but…”
Game, set, and what was about to be match to Logan Echolls.
“So why can’t you just admit it?” His eyes traveled a purposeful line down over her body and then back up again, just to watch the blush that she tried to hide. “You and me together, we’re good. You enjoy it and you want it as much as I do.”
The color rose up her cheeks, a warning of her denial, and he wasn’t surprised when she shook her head.
“No, Logan, I…”
While her voice sounded tired and weary, it was her eyes that shook him. They looked almost scared, desperate enough for her to plead with him, to beg him to let her have her defenses. And that was half the problem; he needed to stop looking in her eyes or he would never make it to step two of his plan.
And step two really was the fun part.
“Bullshit.” Because if anything was going to push her past the flimsy little weak kitten act, a challenge was sure to do it. “God, Mars, you’re so blind…”
He didn’t give her time to react, just enough that her mouth opened in protest and he took full advantage of that to close the distance and capture her lips in another kiss. She stiffened against him, a momentary hint of her desire to pull away, but he could feel her begin to soften almost immediately.
Her shoulders slackened and her feet shifted, small subtle movements that pushed her closer to him, angled her up to an easier position, and he cupped the side of her face, held her there while his thumb stroked the side of her cheek.
“So tell me, Veronica.” He whispered the words into her mouth, soft puffs of breath that tickled the sides of her lips. “You being the expert on this sort of thing…”
As he spoke, his hand trailed down the side of her neck, his fingertip tracing a line over her skin, sliding over the beat of her pulse until he could lay his palm flat on the rise of her chest. Her shirt was thin enough to feel the heat of her blood, pumping fast and getting faster.
“What does it mean in a conversation if a person can’t meet your eyes?” He knew by the slight intake of her breath that she’d caught on. “When their breath gets shallow and their pulse rises?”
“It…” It came out like a gasp when he nuzzled his mouth over to the side of her ear. “It could mean anything, Logan.”
But her voice was too weak and they both knew it.
“Come on, it’s easy, Nancy Drew.” His teeth tugged slightly on the fleshy lobe. “The most likely reason is…?”
Her fingers curled into the edges of his shirt, just inside the indents of his collarbones, and he could feel them pull the fabric tight, feel just the slightest bit of frustration in her movement before she sighed and buried her face deeper into his neck.
He rewarded the admission by slipping his thumb beneath the edge of her shirt and sliding it across the swell of her breast, sucking at her ear the second he felt her nipple poking out at him.
“Yes!” It was a gasp and an arch at the same time and he could feel her try to pull herself back under control. “Or it could just mean they’re being molested in a bathroom.”
“Well, yes, it could mean that, but when you think about it, either way…” And he leaned back to look her in the eyes, triumph spreading across his face. “What you’re really saying is that you’re lying about me not making you really hot right now, or you can’t control the fact that I’m getting you really hot, which also means you’re lying.”
Her eyes narrowed.
“I hate you.”
Leaning forward again, he brought his mouth in close to her ear and breathed in a hot, clammy whisper.
“And I bet it makes you really wet, doesn’t it?”
She shuddered, a full body movement that he felt.
“Fuck you, Logan.”
But there was no venom in her voice and he grinned.
“God, I love it when you talk dirty.”
He slipped his free hand along the bottom edge of her shirt, lightly feathering his fingertip against the smooth expanse of skin that could be found underneath it. She sucked her breath in when he closed his fingers around her waist and pulled her closer, pulled her flush against him.
“What are you doing tonight?” He asked the hollow of her neck; smiling at the arch she gave him, the tacit permission to suckle her there. “Come over? We can… debate my non effects on you all night if you want.”
The chuckle she bit back really did negate the effects of the glare she tried to give him as she spread her hand flat against his chest and pushed him away.
“No can do, Romeo.” It sounded a little too much like relief. “I have to dogsit. I doubt Backup would appreciate being cooped up by himself for the weeke…”
Her words trailed off at the cocky rise of his eyebrow.
“No.” She shook her head as if to clear it. “Do you hear me, Logan? I said no.”
“I’ll bring dinner.”
His step, when he turned and pushed his way out the door, had a certain spring to it.
A little breathless and a lot sexy.
He didn’t hesitate once until his fist was raised to knock on her door.
The absolute enormity of what he was about to do hit him suddenly. All day he’d been thinking about her. Veronica. About how strong she appeared to everyone, all fire and purpose and take-no-prisoners, about how much of her weaknesses she probably wasn’t even aware she’d shown.
Not a lot of people cared to look. Truth be told, he hadn’t bothered to look in a long time, but she had her tells, just like everyone else. She just kept them a lot closer to her chest.
He’d been focused on her reactions, paper thin and as guileless as he once remembered her to be. The girl he’d known before all their lives had been ripped apart. She did, without a doubt, project a much harsher version of herself, but if he looked hard enough, she was still that girl.
And the hardest thing was to remember her in those moments he’d initially brushed aside as irrelevant, the moments when she’d most certainly been overcome by fear. At the time he’d shushed her through what he’d thought was pure nervousness, but that didn’t add up once he knew the who and why and where of it. To actually recognize the brief flickers of panic and alarm, to readjust his memory of her expressions, all pain and flickers of hurt and betrayal, any time he’d called her one of those terrible names.
Then there was the unthinkable. Miss James’ voice hinting at what damage could be done if the wrong partner was chosen for that sort of thing, when all he could think about was that moment when she’d finally felt as if she was relaxing against him, under him, into him, and he’d shied away.
Too bitter to realize the enormity of it, he’d pushed her away and treated her with enough disdain and animosity to ensure she went back to her natural defensiveness and rebuilt all her barriers between them again.
He’d pretended not to watch her, to look away, but he’d seen her flinch, seen the fleeting pain cross over her face and his own spite had pushed him to enjoy the moment rather than give into whatever softer side of him was left that had told him to fix it. He’d seen the confusion in her actions and watched the hesitant, reluctant way she’d accepted the barb and gathered her clothes, as if it had been nothing, meant nothing, to either of them. And then he’d let her walk out of the room without any reassurance whatsoever, other than the usual comfort of their shared hostility.
No, no possibility for any long lasting psychological damage there.
There was something inexplicably distasteful to link all those images with the ones of the easily trusting girl that used to be his friend, something that made a bad taste rise in his mouth, coupled with the strong urge to reassure both himself, that she was okay, and her, that what had happened wasn’t as bad as… as… he had no idea as bad as what, but that wasn’t the point of the exercise.
The side of his curled fist came down hard on the wood of her door.
He was not expecting Keith Mars’ face to greet him from the midst of warm light that flooded from the open apartment.
“Logan?” From the blank look of surprise on the man’s face, he hadn’t expected it either. “Logan Echolls?”
It wasn’t a question of his identity, because he was fairly sure that Keith Mars knew who he was without a doubt, more of a question of the reality of it being Logan on the doorstep.
“Um, hi Mr. Mars.” He shuffled his feet nervously as he jiggled the pizza box in his hand almost as a shield, as if its existence was validity enough for him to be there. “Is Veronica here?”
For a great, long, awkward moment, the two of them stared at each other. Logan got the awful feeling that he was being scrutinized, judged, and weighed against something horrible in the back of the man’s mind. Something that was probably true.
He’d known Keith Mars for several years and he’d always felt, if not strictly loved and adored by the man, at least a measure of respect, indulgence, and an accession to his teenage waywardness as being not entirely harmful. This was the first time he saw true disappointment and distrust in the eyes and he was surprised, after all the things he’d felt and said over the last year, to realize how much that hurt.
“Logan?” And then the door was wrenched further open, casting a brighter flood of light over Logan’s face. “What are you doing here?”
Veronica half glared, half sighed at him standing there and the expression in her eyes spoke more of murder than her father’s as she reached out to grab his wrist and pull him inside. He let himself be jostled into the small kitchen area.
“I told you not to come.” She hissed, her eyes checking compulsively over his shoulder. “What on earth made you think this was a good idea?”
A soft, polite, attention-getting cough made them both turn around.
“Veronica?” Keith asked with a pointed heavy glance at Logan. “Do you need me to stay?”
At that moment, Logan looked beyond the man to see the overnight bag stashed beside the door, the tell tale signs of a man dressed for travel, and he felt himself relax as he turned back to her. He knew the look in his eyes specifically read Oh, yes, Veronica, Please. Let’s have your father here for THIS conversation.
She ground her jaw in obvious frustration.
“No.” The sigh was much put upon. “It’s okay, dad, you need to catch your flight. I’ll be fine.”
Logan was relegated to the background as he was pushed aside and he busied himself by putting the increasingly warm and greasy cardboard box down on the bench and pretending not to watch as Veronica walked over and guided her father by the elbow towards the door, standing up on her tip toes to kiss his cheek.
“I’ll be fine.” She promised again. “Really. Now go, shoo.”
After a few whispered words Logan was fairly sure he wasn’t meant to hear, all warnings and promises and offers of physical harm that were only half jokingly uttered and even less jokingly declined, the door finally closed and he felt the apartment walls close in tightly and suddenly.
“I told you not to come.” Her voice lost all the warm, honeyed reassurance she’d been peppering Keith with. “Are you completely brain dead? Unable to function like a human being? Logan? What?”
He smiled sheepishly and pointed to the bench.
“I bought pizza.”
“It’s after nine, I already ate.” Veronica barely bothered to roll her eyes as she curled her fists into the sides of her hips. “Like a normal person. You should try it sometime.”
He shrugged and stepped around the small partition separating them, more fully into the living room. It wasn’t more than a few feet, but somehow it felt closer, more intimate, without furniture between them and he could see it register in her eyes as well.
“It’s after nine, because I wanted to be sure your father had gone.” A quick, careless shrug and he continued. “Although that didn’t work. And it’s pizza, because if you’d already eaten, we can leave it there. What’s better in the middle of the night than cold pizza to recharge drained batteries?”
Her eyes sharpened and she raised her right hand, pointing at him like a naughty child that needed to be scolded. Or warned.
Or pushed back.
“No.” She insisted. “There’ll be no needing to recharge anything… my batteries will remain… Logan, this is a stupid analogy.”
The flustered little wrinkle of dismissive confusion she got in the middle of her forehead made him smile, it was utterly cute, and then the fact that he’d used the word ‘cute’ and Veronica Mars in the same sentence made him frown. Something was awry in the Universe.
He was getting completely sidetracked from his original purpose. Which was… to… help her… ensure that… revisit the night… get laid. Yes, precisely. Everything else was cover. Elaborate and entirely much more effort than he usually exerted for this kind of endeavor, sure, but even he had to admit that the end result would be worth it. Her recent history suggested all her practice had been worth…
But even Logan Echolls’ powers of denial only stretched so far. His desperate attempts to recapture some of the bitterness were more fragile and brittle than the candy shell of an M&M. A green one, even. He’d seen something, remembered it, been reminded of who they’d both been and what they were now.
Veronica Mars was standing in front of him and all he could do was to try and think of reasons why he wasn’t turning into the biggest pussy of the entire SoCal area, when it was painfully obvious that that was exactly what was happening.
And he honestly found he didn’t really care.
“What?” She frowned even further. “Do I have something in my teeth? An extra head? What are you staring at?”
It was the perfect opportunity to look her over. He knew the gesture wasn’t lost by the quirk in her brows. His eyes took in her knee length skirt and the curve of her calves all the way down to the slouched socks around her ankles, the unfocused rumpled lay of her shirt, the small forgotten creases of her knees and the messy, careless bands clumped around her hair at either side of the base of her neck.
She was dressed for a casual night in, comfortable and easy.
He was not above imagining her preparing to strip down into her sheer, lacy negligee, grabbing a big, fluffy pillow and settling in for a rather risqué tussle with her very well hidden at the moment, but similarly disrobed and disheveled playboy model friend.
Sometimes his brain was the only thing that kept him going.
“You know, we could play this game all night.” He cocked his head to the side and purposefully looked up to meet her eyes, knowing that no matter how much she had changed, her weakness was logic. “You’ll keep demanding answers I don’t have and I’ll keep trying to convince you of something you already know, but refuse to admit.”
Logic and curiosity.
“But can we just skip all of that so I can ask you one simple question?”
Thoughts began to whirr inside her head; he could see them behind her eyes, that and the calculation of whatever possible damage could be done with one very pointed question. The answer, they both knew all too well, was a lot. But she wasn’t completely stupid; she knew he was there for a purpose, a purpose that wouldn’t be served at all by alienating her.
The ball was in her court and she was weighing her options. He could practically see her chew the debate into her bottom lip, taking the opportunity to make it into a test, an unspoken challenge he’d have to pass.
“Okay.” She decided with a nod of her head, highlighting her answer with a pointed finger. “One. One question. That’s all you get.”
With great effort, he refrained from giving a cocky grin and claiming that was all he was going to need. Great, great, monumental effort. Instead, he raised his brows in a plaintive, honest question and kept hold of her gaze.
“Can I kiss you?”
Her mouth fell open in surprise and he had counted on it, had suspected that amid all the complicated webs of rationalization and defense and begging their relationship had been reduced to, or possibly ‘elevated’ was the more appropriate word given their recent history, the direct, simple approach hadn’t even occurred to her.
“Jesus, Veronica.” He scoffed lightly at her confusion. “If I need to explain that concept, I’ve been doing something wrong this week.”
A small laugh fought her hard to escape, pushing up past the blush of her cheeks and he could see in the nervous flutter of her hands that she really had no idea what to say. Anything else she had probably already thought of and had ready-made defenses against, but not that. There was no reasonable excuse to say no.
And she knew it.
The tips of her fingers twitched back and forth as if she was adding up the pros and cons, but he knew that expression on her face. She looked the same as she always had, trying to find the nicest, politest way to decline a second serving of Italian when everyone at the table knew she would damn well end up devouring it with glee.
“Logan.” Hesitation warred with temptation on her face. “I…”
“Can?” He punctuated each of his words with a step forward. “I? Kiss? You?”
She ducked her head and her shoulders heaved, one big inhalation, and he knew he’d won. He reached out with the tip of his finger and threaded it into a stray lock of her hair, pushing it to the side of her face as her eyes turned up. They were so close she had to be able to feel his breath on her lips.
It still wasn’t enough.
“Veronica?” His voice was almost amused as he whispered. “Answer the…”
“Yes.” Came the exhalation as the corners of her eyes crinkled. “Yes, what else do…?”
His fingers curled into the divots at the back of her jaw line, just in front of her ears, his palms rested along her chin and she didn’t resist as he pulled her forward and up. It started slowly, just him fitting his lips along hers, and he could feel them both hold their breaths.
It didn’t stay slow for long. Not when she made a little noise in the back of her throat and he licked the seam of her lips, she opened her mouth and he took full advantage of that fact. The bare and brutal truth of it was that something sparked between them when they got like that. Chemistry.
The sharp edges of her hair tickled the bones of his wrist and he tightened his fingers against her skin. He’d made fun of it, taunted her so many times because of it, but he had to admit that he really did like it. Liked the way it swept across the line of her chin when she moved, haughty and cocky expression in tow, liked the absolute smartassness of it that refused to let her hide behind the curtain of what it used to be.
She sucked breath deep into her throat and he felt the air being pulled from inside his own mouth, felt the molecules of his throat drag against each other and into her, it made him moan out loud as he stepped forward, using his bulk to push her back.
They stumbled and her hand automatically reached up to grab the back of his elbow to steady herself.
“Wait.” Even as she clung to him she tried to pull away, her lips moving around his. “Wait…”
“But…” His right hand wrapped around the back of her head, twisting his fingers all through the pony tails that began to come loose, and his left hand stroked the curve of her neck, moving down and around her shoulders to steady her back and pull her closer to him. “I already told you, it feels too good.”
She hadn’t let go and she hadn’t moved her face away, in fact, she seemed to be pulling him closer and her own mouth was working, sucking at his as much as he was hers, lips quivering around his.
“You’re such a cocky…”
It ended in a gasp as he moved his mouth from the corner of hers to the side of her neck, lips reading the pattern of her skin, seeking out the hot spots of her pulse. She didn’t notice his left hand slip down, away from her, to his back pocket.
The material slid out quickly and quietly, smoothly pulling at the seams of his pants.
“What…?” She shifted, just like he thought she would, the instant he brought it up to meet his other hand at the back of her head. “Logan, no.”
Her hands found the front of his chest and pushed him back. She gave a confused little tremble, a whole body shudder as if to bring herself back to reality.
“I let you do it to me.” He pointed out logically. “And more so, because you didn’t warn me beforehand.”
Her posture morphed, from relaxed to nervous and defensive in one easy second, arms coming up to wrap around her torso.
“That was different, I…” When she looked at him, her eyes narrowed slightly. “I can’t do this. Not like that, not…”
One hand dangled in mid air as she gestured toward the blindfold. Even as she watched it, he wound it around his wrist, casually draping the material over and over his hand. It was soft and silky and the sensation of it tingled up his forearm and began to heat up.
“It’s not like anything, Veronica.” He kept his voice even and calm. “It’s not the blindfold, is it? The real question here is, do you trust me?”
She looked like a deer caught in the headlights.
“You were only supposed to get one.” Her voice came out soft and weak. “One question.”
“Because the way I see it, we really have three options here.” He continued without pausing. “One, you can put a stop to this whole thing right now and I walk away without another question. Two, we can continue doing what we’re doing, exactly how we’re doing it, dancing around each other and getting nowhere. Or three, you can let me show you something and maybe we can actually move on and learn from it. Consider it a growth exercise. Your call.”
“My call?” He could see the challenge enter her eyes as she gestured towards the material again. “What about this is my call, Logan? What?”
He gave a small shrug.
“All of it.” Simple, soft, he said it easily and confidently as if his explanation was both obvious and unmistakable. “You put this on and I will do anything you want. You name it, you got it.”
She opened her mouth, puzzled and without her usual upper hand.
“Okay, you lost me.”
Giving up ground now, giving in to her, would only defeat the purpose. He couldn’t back down just to allay her fears, the only way to achieve anything was to keep up the act and not show any fear. So he stepped forward and kissed the side of her mouth without touching any other part of her.
“Veronica.” Kiss. Step forward. Kiss. “You’re not listening to me. I will do whatever you want. However you want me to do it. You say ‘jump’ and I ask ‘into what?’”
“Uh huh.” She looked doubtful, amused but doubtful as she angled her jaw to make it just that little bit easier for him. “So, while I am getting this apparently brilliant and one of a kind, unpass-upable deal where you become my fawning sex slave, what are you getting out of it?”
“Oh, babe.” He lingered a little longer with each kiss, sealing his lips over the sensitive skin underneath her chin and sucking lightly. “Did you listen to your own question? This is all for me.”
Her brow knotted in distaste.
“Don’t call me that.”
A laugh gurgled up in his throat.
“Does this mean we have a deal?”
If his voice rose a little with too much hope he ignored it and, thankfully, so did she. It was becoming increasingly obvious that Logan Echolls was deteriorating from mortal enemy to pleading puppy dog, begging for scraps. And far from minding, he really was enjoying himself. It was just an unusual state of affairs.
This girl was going to send him crazy.
“Fine.” She sighed it, sounding much put upon, but there was a twinkle in her eye as she allowed him to walk her backwards through the hall towards her bedroom. “Fine. Will this get you to leave me alone?”
He caught her shoulders in both hands and maneuvered her into the sidewall; pressing all the way into her, hip-to-hip, thigh-to-thigh, catching her off guard so that she gasped and her mouth fell open. Her breath puffed out at the last second, blowing a warm gust over his face and into his mouth as he closed the gap, licking at her lips and pushing his tongue all the way in.
She was succulent and he was hungry.
“You really want me to?”
“Huh?” Veronica blinked, dazed. “Want what?”
“Well.” He mouthed her chin. “Guess that answers my question.”
Then he slowly brought the blindfold up and laced it around the back of her head. He carefully watched her expression tighten from relaxation to nerves as she bit her lip and held her breath. But she didn’t flinch and she didn’t move away, even if he could feel the hesitation in the sudden awkwardness of her stilted hands on his sides.
“Relax.” Without breaking contact, he let his hands drift from her head down her neck to her hands, trailing lightly over her arms, and then pulled her softly towards her room. “I left the heavy artillery at home.”
The brief emotion that flickered over her face was easy enough to read and he was grateful that she let the matter drop.
“What…?” She kept chewing on her bottom lip like she hadn’t been fed in weeks. “What do you want me to do now?”
The contrast was startling, the cocky, confident Veronica outside of these walls and the uncertain, wavering creature that stood before him. It was like gentling a puppy. And the Veronica he knew did not need that. He ran his hand over her neck again, feeling her pulse jump under his fingers.
“You’re not getting this whole concept, are you?” He kissed the side of her mouth. “You tell me what you want.”
The corners of her lips quirked upwards.
“Anything?” And the way she said it made it sound like a dangerous concept, made him think he’d been too hasty in his plan. “Anything at all?”
And it was only half a joke, considering the devious way he knew her mind worked.
“I could be into some freaky stuff, Logan.” She leaned backwards, jutting her left knee out towards him. “Like, what if I asked you to kiss my feet and lick my toes?”
He let go of her neck to reach down and catch her leg under the knee, fingers closing in around her upper calf, and used the momentum to push her backwards onto the bed. She gave a startled gasp that soon turned into a shriek as his hand spidered down her leg and circled her ankle, bringing it up to his face.
But he didn’t, tearing her sock off with his free hand and blowing cold air over the exposed pink skin of her sole. She squirmed backwards, trying to wrestle her leg free from him and her breath came in a labored and breathy laugh.
“Ugh. Logan, stop it!”
He grinned as he knelt down on the mattress, following her down, and turned his head to place a messy, clumsy kiss on the side of her ankle.
“I was kidding!” She pleaded between gasps, still trying to pull away. “Gross, Logan, no.”
“Kidding?” He asked curiously as he stopped still and dropped her ankle, letting her leg fall to the side of his rib cage. His eyes looked up the length of her to watch her pink cheeks before he leaned forward and let his mouth close over the inside of her knee. “Kidding?”
The squirming didn’t stop as his fingers searched out tight little sensitive spots in the sides of her waist and hips. She laughed despite herself, using her own hands to try and push him away as he climbed over her body to bring his face level with hers.
But she didn’t push him away when he lowered himself down to close his mouth over hers and he felt her sigh over his tongue as her chest puffed up heavily into his, expanding with the need for oxygen.
“Okay.” He agreed simply. “No feet.”
They kissed again and he left her ticklish spots so that he could bring his hands up and cup her cheeks, run his hand through her hair. He felt the warm pressure of her hands settling against the sides of his ribs as she relaxed into it.
She broke first, pulling her head back and gasping for air as he settled on the mattress to the side of her face, watching as the hilarity of the moment drained.
“Why?” It was almost blank, her curiosity as she turned her face to his, the blindfold hiding the bulk of her expression behind her eyes. “Why are you doing this?”
“Because you wanted me to help you.” He replied honestly. “And I don’t think the job is finished yet.”
The snap of change was instant as her body tensed in front of him.
“I’m fine, thank you very mu…”
“You’re not fine.” He insisted. “You wanted to get over your fear of sex, right?”
Her chin jutted forward.
“I am over it. Or hadn’t you noticed?”
“No.” Gently, he ran a finger down the side of her face, even as she shied away from his touch. “Doing it once just to get it over with isn’t not being afraid. Not being able to say what you want or don’t want isn’t getting over it.”
She was about to shake her head and he could read the denial on her lips before they even parted.
“Look, something happened to you, okay?” At the immediate flash of panic he saw cross her features, he softened his tone. “I don’t know what and I don’t even need to know, not if you don’t want me to, but I think you really need some help.”
Her teeth slipped past her lips and began chewing on the bottom one; he watched it for a second, the white enamel contrasted against the plump, red pillow. It made the saliva run in his mouth.
“And.” He added with a dramatic sigh. “If I have to be the one to endure all this really great sex with one of the hottest girls in school, so be it.”
A smile threatened the corners of her mouth and he could practically hear the eye roll in her voice.
He nodded several times in quick succession before realizing that she couldn’t see him.
“Several times.” He assured her with a deep, put upon voice. “I’m just that generous.”
He trailed his finger around her ear, lightly skimming it over the finely dotted hairs on the nape of her neck, scratching the edge of his nail down the line of her tendon, over the rise and fall of her collarbone. She swallowed in response, jaw working silently.
Her breath came stuttered as he brought his hand back up to her face, barely touching but lightly disturbing the air in front of her lips, her nose, over the blindfold and back again. He could feel the warm air skitter over the skin of his wrist.
Almost as a secondary action, without thought, she inched her head backwards, angling her chin up to meet his fingers. He held his breath as he let the pad of his thumb graze the soft cushion of her lower lip. The movement caused her entire spine to arch and he let his eyes wander over the length of her.
Never in a million years would Logan have ever thought he’d be lying on Veronica Mars’ bed while said Veronica Mars was lying next to him, stretched out, her chest thrusting up as she unconsciously rose to meet his hands.
His mouth went dry and his brain blank as he remembered her on top of him, nearly naked.
The whisper came as a miniscule puff of air, deeper and huskier than their conversation of moments ago. He blinked as he returned to see her face turned towards him.
Her lips twisted into a nervous little smile, shaky and hesitant and he couldn’t drag his eyes away. This softer side of her was new, or possibly old, but unlike the girl he’d gotten used to and lived to torment. As he stared, the smile fell, flicked and dropped away.
“Sorry.” He shook his head. “What?”
The smile returned again, small and unsure.
“I said okay.” Her hand came out slowly, fingers outstretched, and batted against the side of his arm. As she made contact, her fingers closed over his flesh and she followed the path of it up his shoulder and to the back of his neck where she pulled him closer. “I said okay, we can do this.”
It was slow and unsure and it took several seconds of him breathing her air until it finally punctured his conscious thoughts. She was kissing him. And he was just lying there like a lump of fucktard.
“So here.” He took control of the kissing, pressing forward and punctuating his words with rapid quick pecks at her lips, almost biting them until she began to respond, until her chin angled upwards to meet him. “Is where I ask you what you want me to do.”
He watched the skin on her forehead pucker and saw the spread of color on her cheeks.
“I like… I like the kissing.”
He grinned as he leant forward even more, capturing her mouth in a full forced hungry kiss. She was lying half on her back and he was leaning over her and he kept rolling forward until he could plant himself right above her. His knees cradled her hips and his hands bunched themselves in the sheet next to her face as he kept pecking at her lips, sucking the flesh of them into his mouth, licking the seam of them open so he could push his tongue past.
She groaned low in the back of her throat, a deep rumbly sound that echoed down his spinal cord. It was all he could do to keep from bending his hips downwards and grinding against her like a dog on heat.
“Like this?” His breath began to get a little heavy, a little too constricted. “You like this?”
It was a light agreement, even as he could feel her trying to angle her jaw to the side. Each time she did he lifted his head back, broke the contact, and chased her mouth back into the game. A small, soft sound rose from her throat.
Her body shifted underneath the bridge of his.
“Logan?” It came out half whimper, half pout.
He took her lower lip between his teeth and nipped at it, stretching it lightly before letting it spring back.
“Logan…” There was an edge of frustration to her voice as she pointedly angled her jaw to the side. “Please…”
He nosed her chin back to the middle, aligned again, and kissed her hard.
Her hands, still resting lightly in the bunches of his shirt collar, clenched. He could feel it in the tightening of material. It made him grin a little.
“Kiss me.” It was a brave little order, gaining strength with every moment. “More.”
His tongue found the corners of her mouth, pushing against hers, stealing whatever breath she had.
“No…” She pulled away as her hands rose on the back of his head and directed his face down into the curve of her neck. “Here. Kiss me here.”
He grinned against her skin, the vaguest scent of marshmallows rising up to meet him.
The effect was immediate; he could feel the shift of her body under his as he licked a messy wet stripe up her tendon, the roll of her hips, the undulation of her spine. The very strength of her responses made him harder, created a weight in the lower portion of his back that made him want to dip his hips down, made him crave contact.
He could feel the heat of her thighs outside his hips, teasing him, cradling him.
His fingers itched to touch her, to take the edges of her shirt and pull it up, to trace the outline of her breasts straining against the cotton, but he kept them buried in the sheet. Used only his mouth to tease and taste her neck and jaw.
One by one, he felt her fingers crawl into the neck of his shirt, walking the material up his back, inch by inch. It itched, teasing, where his skin was bared. Cool, fresh air tickled the small of his back and he shifted, rolled with it, allowed her easier access as she pulled it up.
It made the saliva run dry inside his mouth. For all the things he wanted to do to her, he could still remember all the things she’d done to him, the feel of her hands on his chest and on his dick, the way she squirmed under and over him.
He wanted to just grab her and strip all her clothes off, throw her down to the bed and have at it, he wanted to, but he kept the muscles of his upper arm rigid as they held him over her, the strain of his biceps and triceps carrying his entire weight as he nuzzled the side of her neck.
One by one the pads of her fingers pressed into his back, digging slightly into his flesh, he could feel each of them, ten little contact points followed by two fleshy palms, and then she dragged them down. He felt it like heat trails, sliding in symmetrical patterns over his spine and down his flanks, fingers finding ticklish points in the sensitive pockets of his hips.
She spread her fingers out over the front of his torso, delving into the grooves of his abdomen and ribs, pushing against skin and bones. Her thumbs made little points against his sternum and he watched the tip of her tongue flick out over her lips, a split second movement.
“Veronica…” It came out like a groan, bit back as the edge of a fingernail brushed against his nipple. “Can… can…?”
His skin tingled in the wake of her disrupting the small, wiry hairs on his chest. He wanted her to grab hold, harder, and tug, to pull at them, to make him feel it. Her chin angled upwards, straining towards him and he pecked at her mouth again, sucking her lower lip between his.
It was a deep noise made in the back of her throat.
“Can I take your top off now?”
The words came out quickly in a gust of air and he felt momentarily foolish, like a kid caught on his first time with his hand up a girl’s shirt. He was straining with holding himself still and needed her to give the order. She laughed, small and amused and surprised.
And just a little bit needy.
“Oh, god, yes.”
He hid his grin in the curve of her neck, inhaling her skin as his hand lifted from the sheet near her face to feel her shoulder. It fit easily into the spread of his palm, all bone and shape and sinew, he could feel her shifting under his touch and he kissed her in the wake of it.
His lips sucked on the cotton of her shirt, trying to taste the remnants of her in the cloth, as he trailed along her collarbone to the middle of her neck, to the bobbing pulse and heated flesh. She panted above him as his mouth caught up, sucking deep, and he teased the edge of the shirt, pulled it down, bared the tops of her breasts to his lips.
She squirmed as he licked a line across them and tickled his fingers down the middle of her chest, feeling the ridges of her breastbone rise and fall under him and he opened his mouth more, closed it over soft, heated flesh at the top of her breasts and sucked.
Her stomach was flat and trembling when he reached the hem of her shirt, heated skin as he slipped his fingers underneath. Soft, so soft, and he wrapped his fingers around her waist, loving the feel of her size against him. She was so small he could rub his thumb in circles over her belly button and reach around with his fingertips to the soft flanks that made her squirm even more.
Her back arched under him, pressed her torso up against him and he gave in with a small groan, pressed down into her, hip to hip, shoulder to shoulder, knees to knees as he brought his other hand down to meet the other, slid them both under the shirt and began pushing it up.
The tight, taut lines of her abdomen beckoned to him as her belly button winked in time with her breathing and he rested his forehead in the crook of her neck for a second, only a second, until he pushed up, broke the contact, made space for his hands to pull her shirt up over the rise of her breasts and over her head.
He bit his lip as he looked down at her, she’d lifted her arms to help get rid of her top and they stayed there, her whole body stretched under him, her hands lay limp above her head, fingers curling into empty air. When he looked at her face, he saw it. A flicker of hesitancy, self doubt in the crease of her brow, nervousness making her lick the edges of her lips. Her head jostled slightly, from side to side, and he saw the scrunch of her skin under the blindfold.
“Hey, relax.” He whispered it softly into the curve of her chin as he bent down to kiss her; dabbed soft kisses along her jaw and mouth. His hands found hers above her head and linked their fingers for a second, before sliding down the line of her arms, cupping the sides of her elbows and into the ticklish sensitive areas underneath. “Just tell me what you want.”
“More.” Came the husky order, a little breathless and a lot sexy. “I want more.”
He teased the edge of her bra with his teeth.
A whimper of frustration sounded and he heard the soft whump of her head falling back to the pillow.
“Take it off.” It was half order, half admission. The shy acquiescence of someone not used to being so demanding. “Take it all off.”
Oh, god, she was going to kill him.
The space between her back and the mattress was hot and clammy as he fumbled for the catch of her bra, snicked it open and tugged the straps off her arms. She arched against the feel of fingers on her spine, neck and chest stretching up and then curling back down when he pulled away.
Her nipples had started to peak, the flesh rippled around them, but he could do a lot better as he brushed the side of his thumb against one and bent down to blow lightly across the other. She hummed her approval and found the curve of his skull with her hand.
Just because he was there for her didn’t mean he couldn’t experiment for himself and so he alternated the pressure with a flick, lick, flick, lick, fast and slow combination until she was squirming and then he closed in, sealing his mouth around her right nipple and his fingers around her left at the same time, sucked and tugged a groan deep out of her throat.
The flesh of her breasts moved with him, pillowed his wrist and cheek and chin, and the spare fingers of his hand cupped it, pushed it, squeezed until he knew how she liked it. She was rippling under him and he could hear a rumble of urgency growing in the back of her throat, it spurred him on.
He lay slightly lower than her, his hips cradled between her thighs and his cock straining against the pressure of the mattress beneath him. It wanted friction, wanted touch and movement.
There was something in her skin, he could smell it, it teased the edge of his brain to the point of madness and he knew if he could identify it he could relax a little, but it eluded him, made him bury his face in the midline of her chest and breathe as his hands cupped her ribs.
It remained elusive, something buried deep in his cerebral cortex.
His hands slid around her ribcage, feeling the bumps and curves of bone, pushing back underneath her body to the soft, sensitive flesh of her flanks. The rise of her ass under his hands made him lick his lips, made him taste the skin of her navel as he cupped her backside.
He didn’t know what she was asking, but the deep huskiness of her voice made him groan as he slid his hands further down the outside of her thighs, grabbed her knees and pulled them up around him, pushed her legs further apart so he could press in closer, so he could feel the stretch of inner thigh muscle against his abdomen.
The hem of her skirt tickled him and he pushed it up into a bunch of material circling her waist, his fingers fumbled at the top, searched frantically in the material for the zip. He found it with a sigh of relief and slid the metal tab down until the cloth pooled loosely. He wanted it off and it didn’t take long, him tugging at the skirt and her kicking it off. Her legs shifted, stretched, bunched, and he watched the movement of them as she adjusted.
Like a child at Christmas, he could barely be patient as he nudged the tip of the index finger of his right hand into the middle of her pubis and gently dragged a line all the way down, feeling the heated crevasse through the plain white panties she was wearing.
She jerked under him and spread her legs wider, he put more pressure on her, pressed the pad of his finger into the heat pooling there. He surged upwards, keeping his hand between her legs as he sprung up to thrust his tongue deep into her mouth.
His fingers cupped into her, rubbing a gentle but rapid beat into her skin and he couldn’t help himself, had to thrust at her, his groin practically begging for it until he ended up pressed into the back of his own hand. They moaned into each other’s mouths as they ground simultaneously, sandwiching his hand between them.
The fingers of his left hand curved around the back of her neck, held her head still as he sucked at her mouth, licked at her teeth, tongue, anything his own tongue could reach, held her still as his right hand continued the friction between their bodies, pulling and pushing the cotton back and forth against her skin.
Her hands clawed at him then, pushing against his abdomen and, for a brief second, he was afraid he’d gone too far too fast, until he realized she was fumbling with the button of his pants. He broke from her mouth and sucked oxygen through swollen lips as she pulled the zipper down.
Hot, clammy little fingers pushed in under his boxers and gripped him. His cock pulsed in her hand, embarrassingly needy as his hips jerked and he buried his face in her neck, collapsing his chest into hers and stifled a moan.
Tentatively, slowly, agonizingly, she began to pump him and he wanted to grip her hand and pump it harder, set the rhythm himself, but he let her do it and sped up his own hand instead. She moaned far back in her throat and her hips started to rock against him.
She was wet, he could feel and smell it and she made him weak, the faster he went the faster she went until she was pulling his dick hard, her wrist shuffling the hem of his boxers against his belly.
“Stop.” He gasped it roughly, suddenly. “Oh, fuck, Veronica, stop.”
She did, her hand leaving him as if it had burned her.
“I’m sorry.” Her face was red and she was panting, slipping her hand out of his boxers. “I didn’t…”
He hid his chuckle in her neck, sucking her pulse point before coming up to kiss her lips again.
“No.” Kiss. “It’s a good thing. It’s just, you keep doing that, and this’ll be over faster than you want it.”
A small ‘oh’ escaped her lips and her hand came to rest at the top of his thigh, brushing the sensitive skin that covered tense and taught tendons. He could feel the energy radiating out of her, spreading from her fingertips.
She bit her lip, teeth coming out over her bottom lip, and he stopped to watch the moment, take it in.
He could feel her hands move then, spidering against his legs and up to his hips, fingers pulling and tugging at his boxers until the satin slithered down his backside, down his legs, and he kicked them out, helped her free them.
There was only one thing left in the way and he made short work of it, tugging at the sides of her panties until they slid down her legs. She shifted into the movement, first her right leg and then the left, flicking her ankle to get rid of them.
His mind went blank as he stared at her, lying completely naked before him, her head resting slightly to the side as she waited for him. He knelt between her knees with his hands resting lightly on the outside of her thighs, waiting.
“Okay.” He managed to croak, finally. “That’s done.”
She smiled, biting the edge of her lip again.
“Logan?” It was timid, but getting stronger. “Touch me?”
He tapped his fingertips on her skin.
“I am touching you.”
Her hands bunched in frustration.
“No.” She urged. “Touch me there.”
A feral little grin spread over his face.
She inhaled, a long, slow annoyed breath and he could practically see her trying to decide what to do, whether to say the actual words or try and get around it. Something sadistic in him wanted to force her to say it, to get the words out, wanted to hear her say pussy or, fuck, cunt or even, knowing Veronica, something clinical and mood killing like vagina.
“You know where.”
“Really?” He teased. “Because I don’t think…”
His breath caught in his throat when she reached out and grabbed his right hand in hers, dragging it down to the space between her thighs and fuck, he didn’t much care if she said it or not, because he couldn’t drag his eyes away from their combined fingers spreading over her mound.
Smug triumph rode her voice and he wasn’t about to let her get away with it, tightening his fingers around hers and not letting her pull them away, kept her there as he pushed in further, slipped both of them in against the warm wetness.
She gasped and he turned his head to suckle at the inside of her thigh.
It made her twitch, made her leg spasm outwards, in turn opening herself up more and he guided her own fingers against her clit, down to the slick opening and back, spreading her juices between them. He felt her hips buck slightly and moved up her thigh.
On the crest of her moan, he pushed the tips of her fingers inside her, followed them with his own, pushed and nudged against the spongy walls. Her voice broke off with a louder, guttural, cry and her hips pushed up further.
“C’mon, baby.” He shifted his stance to push himself up to the point where he could mouth at the inner joint of thigh to hip, nuzzling at the sensitive bundle of nerves there. “Keep it there.”
Then he let her fingers go, hovering just inside herself, and it gave his own fingers freedom to push deeper and further and faster and he watched, eyes glued to the scene in front of him as she kept her hand there, kept a light stroking going in time with his deeper, faster thrusts.
Her fingers scrambled, lost for a second, until she managed to slip her clit between them, found a rhythm and he matched it, going deeper, pushing harder with each thrust. She was wet and get wetter and that was okay, because he was hard and getting impossibly harder and he figured they would both explode.
“Please.” She keened it, a low desperate moan as she arched her back. “Please, Logan.”
He looked up, watched her neck stretch back and her shoulders pull down, her left arm splayed out and fingers grasping the sheet.
Her body sagged, dropped back to the bed and she gasped hard.
“Please. Do that thing.” It was a harder, more strangled little curse this time. “Like before, like...”
It surged up in him to push, like what?, but he was already rolling forward, already closing his mouth over the knuckle of her hand. He licked downwards, slipping his tongue into the webbing of her fingers, between them, in and out, felt her twitch with it.
If her fingers were warm, the slippery, slick flesh under it was hot, tinged red with blood surging to the surface of her skin, he flicked at her, the very tip of his tongue catching her clit softly, over and over until she let go, pulled her hand out and wrapped it around the back of his head.
He blew a soft, cool stripe of fresh air and then followed it with a long, flat lave of his tongue, ending at the crest of her clit and closing around it with his teeth. She keened low in her throat, hips bucking against his hand as he continued to pump in and out of her.
God, she was responsive, proving with every twitch and thrust and moan Newton’s law of motion. He was rock hard and aching with it, cock throbbing with the need to just plunge into something warm and wet and yet he didn’t really care, couldn’t take his focus away from watching her move, listening to the sounds of her building orgasm, feeling the slick, greedy grasp of her inner muscles, smelling her thick, heady arousal.
His fingers curled into the spongy mass under her pubic bone and her hips bucked hard as she cried out, a hoarse sound of approval and achievement. It poured out of her and he sucked as much as he could, lapping hard and fast as his free hand came to rest gently on the flat line of her abdomen, circling the skin there, drawing her back into coherence as her body crested and fell limp and boneless to the mattress.
“Oh, god.” She gasped. “Logan.”
He blew lightly on her clit as he withdrew his fingers, pulling slowly and soothing her as he crawled up her body, placing abstract kisses on her belly and hip and ribs, her arms and neck and chin.
She met his mouth eagerly, tongue pushing against his, chin rising to push harder and further and closer.
“I want…” She still panted slightly against his mouth, puffs of air tickling his chin. “God, now I just want to sleep.”
He blinked, trying to swallow the disappointment.
A laugh broke free from her throat, thoroughly and sadistically amused as she ran her fingertips down the side of his neck. He felt the nearly sharp edges of her nails scrape lightly against his skin and wanted to purr with it.
“No, not really. But…” A serious look flashed across her face, eyes twitching under the cloth. “Did you bring…? I mean, I don’t have…”
“Oh!” He realized, with a jump, and scrambled up, placing soft little caresses in his wake. “Oh, yes. Yes, I did.”
As he reached for his discarded pants and pulled the little foil packets out, Logan heard Veronica laugh again. A gentle, disbelieving, stunned little contemplative sound that wasn’t really a laugh at all. He frowned as he looked up at her, a taunt, golden body lying back on her elbows and drawing her ankles in closer to each other nervously.
“What?” He sat up straighter, slowly and cautiously, pausing in the slide of latex over his dick. “What’s wrong?”
She shook her head, a slight frown appearing.
“Nothing, I…” But then she seemed to think better of lying and took a breath. “It’s just… with all this niceness coming out of nowhere, the kissing and the little touches, you almost remind me of him.”
And then she stopped. Logan tightened, a burst of bitter jealousy blossoming inside his chest, squeezing tight, the hand holding the condom letting go and falling limp against his thigh.
“He? He who?”
The frown on her face deepened and she lifted a hand up to brush non-existent hair from her face. A gesture of comfort.
“No one, it’s just…” She sighed and her face pointed in his direction. He could imagine her eyes searching for him. “The Logan who used to like me.”
Her voice sounded soft and lonely and sad, broken down in the husk of her afterglow.
“Instead of, you know, the one who hates me.”
And he wanted to say I don’t hate you and I’ve never hated you and what the hell are you talking about?, but he couldn’t, the words died useless on his tongue and he clenched his fist into futile little clumps.
“It’s okay.” Her face pushed forward again, reaching in the silence for some kind of sign. “You don’t need to… I know the deal, okay? We’re good the way we are, you don’t have to pretend to be nice.”
She sat up then, breaking his big speech, her right arm reaching up to feel her way, hand patting thin air until she found purchase on his knee, feeling her way up his thigh and body until she found his shoulder. He watched the line of her change, from taut and stretched to a compact folding of her body, the little crinkles that appeared on her torso.
“You have to do what I want, right?” It was a challenge, dark and foreboding and brittle. “That’s what you said? I say what I want and you do it?”
“Yes, but Veronica…”
Her hand made its way to his mouth, fingers trapping his top lip against the bottom one.
“Then stop talking, stop acting out The Idiot’s Guide to Intimacy and just be yourself.”
“This is me.”
His voice sounded smaller than hers. Her head shook, a firm denial.
“No. You’re Logan Echolls, remember? You let the air out of my tires and call me a whore and try to get me expelled or at least detention at least once a fortnight. Ringing any bells? I’m Veronica, bane of your existence, betrayer of some imaginary code only you know, I foil all your dastardly plans and plant bongs in your locker…”
She was getting more and more worked up with every word, he could see the physical change in her, her breath getting sharper and shallower and harder, her words crisper, her body tighter and her face tenser. Even as he was trying to think of the words to reassure her, his brain was betraying himself by listening, by cataloguing her list and remembering.
Months of seething and loss and resentment and her smug face glowing right back at him when everyone knew she’d gone and spat all over every one of them and Lilly most of all and why the hell was he there with her, anyway?
“Veronica, for fuck’s sake…”
He reached out and wrapped his hand around the back of her neck, pulling her face to his hard, she stumbled forward, scrambling for balance as she readjusted.
“Shut the hell up.”
Her mouth opened to his easily and he wasn’t sure whether it was acquiescence or surprise, but he was almost past caring as he basically fucked her mouth with his tongue, trying to push the words out of there, erase them, stop them from stopping the completion.
Her moan broke his focus and he felt her slide into him, comfortable with her stance as she knelt up and then settled more firmly in his lap. He wrapped his free hand around her back and pulled her closer, pulled her flush against him and he groaned at the feel of her breasts tweaking against his chest.
“Yes.” The words echoed somewhere to the side as he broke from her mouth and began to savage her throat, shifting his hips to widen her thighs around him. “Like that…”
The realization that she’d purposely raised his hackles to fire him up did nothing to alleviate the disturbance and dissatisfaction in him, he didn’t cool down and he flattened his hand on the small of her back and pulled her hard, still warm and wet, against his erection.
“You tell yourself anything you want, sweetheart.” They both groaned as they found a rhythmic back and forth rocking, the top of him pushing at her. “But I’m not always the callous bastard you like to paint me as. And you know it.”
“No.” She agreed breathlessly as she grabbed his chin and pushed up, laving her own pattern of punishment against his throat. “Just to me.”
He jerked and didn’t know if it was from her words or the desperately hot, wet, sucking action at the tendon of his neck.
“What do you want?” He demanded with a frustrated tug on her hips. “What the he…?”
“Now.” It was a plea and a demand and he wasn’t one to make her ask twice. “Now, Logan…”
Both his hands gripped her hips and pulled her in, pulled her down onto him, and he cried out loud at the feel of her tight, corded muscles finally gripping and drenching his cock. He bit at her, teeth nibbling at her neck and shoulder, trying to contain something, deep and primal and desperate.
They sat cross legged on the bed, twisted like a demented pornographic pretzel, her legs wrapped around his hips, their torsos smushed together so that he could hears the slick, sweaty sounds of their bellies hitting each other again and again with every thrust.
She was small and petite and she fit up against him perfectly and he didn’t want to analyze that, didn’t want to acknowledge or admit to the thought and so he thrust harder, gripped her hips harder, pushed and pulled her up and off and back onto him again and again.
His head dipped and he found a nipple, teased it, licked it, sucked it into his mouth and scraped it with his teeth until she clawed at his head, pulled him back and slammed her mouth hard down on his.
“Make me come.”
The words were moaned into his mouth and he shuddered with them, wanted to swallow her whole with them, the difference between the girl who couldn’t even say ‘kiss my neck’ to the one who licked at his tonsils and demanded that was mind boggling.
His fingers found her clit, his knuckles angled against his underbelly, and he stroked her in time with their thrusts, one, two, three, bang, one, two, three, bang, until she began to keen, until her hands on his shoulders began to scrabble desperately and without purpose and her head fell back, unable to concentrate on kissing him anymore.
Her spine was curved, her back arched into him and he tried to memorize it, wanted to keep the moment forever locked away no matter what happened afterwards, and as she began to slam down hard on him without cadence or rhythm, he tugged her clit gently and leaned forward to suck her neck.
That spot that had not failed to make her jelly against him yet.
She came hard and shaking and with a broken cry of triumph.
He rode her out, feeling the tensity give way to a melting laxness in her limbs, and then his arms closed in around her shoulders, hands cupping her shoulder blades as he rolled them both down, her onto her back, and her whole body flopped down, opened to him, relaxed.
Just as her hands came up to the front of his chest, fingertips pressing into the hollows of his collar bones, and her thighs tightened on the outsides of his, sure signs of her readiness to continue, he reached up and pulled the blind from her face.
Her eyes widened, with what he couldn’t be sure, the sudden light, the infusion of sights to add to her senses, but it looked like surprise and recognition to him. A shock at his presence there.
Then he kissed her hard, deep, and she let him as he began to build the rhythm again, hips pumping down soft and accommodating and held back and wanting.
“I’m not.” He insisted, quietly, pressing soft lip shapes that could barely be called kisses against the corners of her lips. “Pretending.”
Her eyes met his, a sudden burst of truth, and he saw more than fear and a year of hatred and the superiority and one-up-manship and lust and passion.
“You’re always pretending.”
She reached up, curling her fingers into the hair at the nape of his neck and pulled him in for another kiss as her hips angled up, urged him in, and he obliged. He kissed her hard, harder than before, kissed the words right out of her mouth as he began to really fuck her in earnest.
Then he was moaning, panting hard with his mouth resting at the side of her ear, shoulders hunched and shaking with the effort of holding himself up as his hips lost any semblance of control and began to pump hard and harder and faster.
Her nails dug in at ten points in his back, he could feel them pressing in, felt them dig and merge and coalesce as her feet scraped against the back of his thighs. He could feel her own wet, warm, moist breath gust out over his neck.
And he wanted… oh god, he wanted… just…
“Veronica.” It gasped out of his mouth as he felt his balls tighten. “Jesus, c’mon. Come…”
Not that he had to convince her too strongly, she was already friction ready and wet and open and gasping, mouth widening and eyes staring at the ceiling, her fingers clenching tighter and he buried his face into the crook of her shoulder, her sweet, sweat, warm, Veronica smelling shoulder and came.
“Oh, fuck.” It slid out of him like a groan as he lay there, covering her, covered by her, body unwilling to move. “Oh, Jesus.”
He could feel her nodding through his haze, felt it as the pulling of the skin on her neck against his cheek, the movement and heat of her face and breath next to his.
“Mmm.” It was a soft, hazy, dreamy sort of agreement. “You could say that.”
The hands clutching his shoulders relaxed and smoothed out on his skin, flattening, sliding against the musculature of his back and he arched into it, moved with it, cricked the bones of his neck with it, and her hands continued their path around his arms to the front of his shoulders, where she gave a slight push and rolled him to the side, rolled him off her.
He felt himself slide out, limp and soggy and spent.
His skeleton had liquefied, had evaporated and shot out of his dick so completely that he felt he couldn’t move, couldn’t lift his own head to look at her properly, but his skin felt suddenly slick and slimy and too sweaty and he nuzzled his cheek briefly against the clean, laundry smelling patch of sheet before he forced himself to sit up.
“I’ll uh…” His hand gestured awkwardly, gracelessly, towards the bathroom. “I’ll be back.”
She looked at him curiously before she nodded and lay her head back on the pillow.
He felt like he’d been vaguely dismissed.
It was a few minutes, maybe, as he disposed of the condom and made himself presentable, or at least not too fucking disgusting, using cold water from the sink to freshen up. Only a few minutes, but when he stepped back into her room, cosmic shifts had occurred.
She was sitting up again, sleep shirt and boxer shorts already thrown on, hands tugging her slowly lengthening hair into a hairtie behind her neck.
The change was palpable and he felt loss.
“Thanks.” She said, voice cold and distant and guarded. “You really helped me. I’ll… I’ll see you at school, I guess.”
He stepped closer to her and pretended not to see the surprised, wary look she shot at his dick hanging absurdly like a billboard in front of him.
“Night’s not over, Veronica.”
Her eyes shot up to meet his, wide and surprised and confused.
“Huh? There’s more?” She swallowed. “More than… than that?”
Immediately her cheeks reddened and she tore her eyes away.
Logan sat back on the bed, took the hairtie from her hands and tossed it aside as he turned her away from him. He could feel her stiffen, a sure sign of the protest about to happen.
“I’m not going anywhere” He said it to the back of her neck as he guided them both down and pulled the sheet up. “At least not for another hour, then I’ll probably wake up and go get that pizza, because I don’t know about you, but I worked up an appetite, but until then I’m staying right here.”
She was awkward and stiff in his arms as he scooped her body from behind, he felt the way her ass nestled just so into the hollow in front of his belly, his knees cupping hers, his face buried in the soft hair at the back of her neck.
Slowly, she began to relax and he ran circles of his hands on the front of her shoulders.
When her breathing had evened out and she had become limp and quite and motionless in his arms, Logan angled his face forward, nuzzled his nose in under her ear.
“I’m not pretending.”
He closed his eyes and breathed in the scent of her. Just before he fell asleep, he could have sworn he felt her hands come up to rest over his forearms in front of her chest, a slight caress, a soft sigh.
When he woke up, she was gone and he was left with a note welcoming him to the shower and any breakfast food in the fridge before he left.
Two steps forward, one step back.