Series: Life on Mars: Sunny Side Up, 2
Word Count: 1,283
Rating: PG for language
Spoilers: Through Season One, especially Leave it to Beaver
Disclaimer: I don’t own. Rob Thomas, UPN, they own.
Summary: Logan and Wallace do a little favor for Veronica.
Notes: Totally unbeta-ed. This in the same universe as “All for the Love of Veronica,” – not as light as that one (there’s a dark mention), but mostly fluff.
Wallace glanced warily out of the X-Terra back window and took in the crowded downtown area of Oceanside, Neptune's Southwest neighboring town. Veronica, in the passenger front seat, swiveled around to keep both Wallace and Logan, sitting behind the wheel, in her sight. A smile curved her lips, a spark lit up her china doll blue eyes and the Veronica Mars patented head tilt went into full effect.
"Okay, we're here, Mars. Spill, what did you have in mind?" Logan asked with a sideways glance towards her.
In the backseat, Wallace shook his head, silently mouthing the word "No." As Veronica's smile widened, he kicked the back of Logan's seat. "Man, are you crazy?! You opened the door. She'll get you anyway, but dang, you opened the door!"
"Wallace!" Veronica snapped with a scowl and then her features quickly reassembled themselves into a bright expression. "It's just a little thing, I don't expect either one of you to break any laws." At her best friend's disbelieving look, Veronica nodded, her voice insistent. "Really, I swear. I just want you to two to walk into that bar and ask the bartender if he's seen Johnny Bale around." Her head resumed its tilt. "That's all. See? Simple."
Nodding in the seat next to her, Logan tapped his fingers on the steering wheel. "It does sound simple enough, Wally."
"What's the catch?" Wallace demanded of Veronica and then quickly added to Logan, "And don't call me Wally."
Biting her lower lip, she was quiet for a moment or two or three -- long enough that Logan shot a glance her way, his expression now mirroring Wallace's one of suspicion. "Veronica, what's the catch?" With a delicate sigh, she looked out the front window and pointed to a bar across the street, a black and white logo stretched across the front of the building: Wild Boys.
"Wha --?" Wallace began and then stopped cold as two men, arm in arm, walked out of the front door. "Veronica?" As the pair moved down the sidewalk, another male couple -- these two, hand in hand -- entered the club. "Veronica! You want me to walk into a," he paused and took a deep breath before continuing, "a gay club? With your boyfriend?" Said boyfriend began shaking his head back and forth, a chuckle escaping from him. "It's not funny!" Wallace shot in his direction and then back to Veronica … once more. "Veronica!"
"You don't have to do anything. Just walk in and look … natural. Head over to the bar, order a drink and then casually ask about Johnny Bale. Get your answer, finish your drinks -- I got you a fake ID, Wallace! -- leave the bar, mingle for a few minutes and then leave. Won't take more than ten minutes, fifteen tops!" She added another bright smile for good measure.
"You forgot the head tilt," Logan offered sweetly. The head tilt hit. "Baby, I gotta say this really touches me. I mean, I'm really. I,” he held his hands to his heart, “am touched." And then contradicting what had appeared to be sarcasm, he shot a genuine smile her way, reaching out and brushed a finger along the curve of her face.
"She wants you to play gay. How is that touching?" Wallace shook his head in disgust. "You two …"
"It's touching because," Logan responded with a backwards glance at Wallace before returning his gaze back to Veronica, "she really just thinks of me as me."
"Of course I do." Veronica said, a note of puzzlement in her voice.
"And I appreciate that. Truly." He paused and clicked his tongue, "but I'm not. Just me, that is. I'm the son of the psychopathic movie-star who plowed his son's girlfriend and then bashed her brains in." His smile was hard.
"What does that have to do with -"
"My face has been plastered all over every magazine and newspaper in the country for the last three months. I walk into a gay bar with your boy, Wallace, it will be on the entertainment shows tomorrow night and the cover of the National Enquirer next week. A recent poll listed me as having the eighth most recognizable face in America." He sighed, genuine regret on his face. "Baby, I'm really sorry. This is the first time you've asked for my help and … sorry."
"Oh," Veronica said in a small voice. "I didn't -- I didn't think of that. It's okay." But her face fell, utter disappointment written on every line. "I did not even think of that. Of course, of course you're right." She was talking to herself now. "We drove all this way for nothing, I have to come up with a completely different plan. Would Weevil do it? No. There are some things he wouldn't do even for me. How could I not have thought of that?" Her voice dropped to an unintelligible mumble and then she fell into silence, staring into space, an inner monologue running through her head.
In the backseat, Wallace let out an inaudible sigh of relief and leaned back comfortably. Too soon.
"Veronica." Logan murmured her name. "Veronica!" He repeated more sharply. She turned to look at him. "To hell with it. Who cares? If someone in that bar does recognize me and alerts the media, who cares? If asked, I'll just say I'm seeking to follow in my father's acting footsteps as a way of dealing with my issues. Uh, a script crossed my path that featured a suicidal young gay man afraid to come out of the closet and I was doing research. That works." He grinned.
Something that Wallace -- no longer sighing, leaning back or comfortable in the backseat - was not doing. Grinning, that was. "Are you CRAZY!?!" Wallace whacked the back of Logan's head.
"Ouch! Hey!" Logan rubbed the offended area and turned to glare at Wallace who was all but frothing at the mouth at this point.
"You had THE perfect excuse! Perfect. She wasn't even TRYING to argue! And you give in! I know you're not even having sex with her so we can't blame it on that! What? What! Were you thinking?! He demanded with another head swat. "Dang!"
Baring his teeth slightly in annoyance, Logan leaned forward (to escape Wallace's swipes) and interrupted his tirade. "Well, if you're not comfortable in your sexuality, Wally …" He let the sentiment linger in the suddenly quiet air. "I have no problem doing this little favor for Veronica -- and by the way, whether we're having sex or not is none of your business," this was accompanied by a hard glare in Veronica's direction. "The point is that I am perfectly secure and content in my manliness, if you're not …" Again, he trailed off and this time turned to glance back at Wallace, an oh so sincere smile on his face. "I understand."
Twenty minutes Later
Wallace was stonily silent as he got into the back of the bright yellow X-Terra. In contrast, a jaunty smile curved Logan's mouth as he hopped in.
"Well?" Veronica questioned with a look that captured them both. Wallace remained silent. Logan grinned her way.
"Johnny Bale was there last night until they closed shop. Apparently, he's a memorable one, that guy. A real looker too. Mr. Bartender was more than happy to go on and on about him. Right, Wally?"
Looking from Logan to Wallace and then back, Veronica furrowed her brow. "What's wrong with him?" She looked back at Wallace.
Silence. And a glare.
Turning the keys in the ignition, Logan shrugged. "I dunno. Maybe he doesn't think I'm a good kisser."