Quadrille (Find the Fourth) [Veronica Mars]

Quadrille (Find the Fourth)
by Jennifer-Oksana
Fandom: Veronica Mars
Rating: NC-17
Pairings: Veronica/Logan, Veronica/Weevil, Veronica/Lilly, Weevil/Lilly, Logan/Lilly, Logan/Weevil
Spoilers: Lord of the Bling
Distribution: Lists, standing orders, others by permission.
Disclaimer: Rob Thomas, UPN, not at all me.
Summary: The one who wins the windfall is the one who…


#1 “Lilly-4-Ever!”

Lilly is going to be young forever. Logan is finally getting used to that, getting used to sitting down by the Lilly Kane Memorial Fountain and her being there, looking just like she used to and always will.

“God, trapped forever at Neptune,” she tells him, snapping her gum and sitting down next to him on the bench. “If I knew this was what it meant to be pretty and young until the end of time, total pass. How about you, Logan? Figure out where you’re going to college yet?”

Logan shrugs nonchalantly. She forgets sometimes. He’s already been in college for a year; it’s barely working, but he’d rather be there than in California. Sometimes he can’t even remember where he ended up, but then he remembers that Duke beat Dartmouth in the coin toss. So he goes to basketball games and listens to girls named Ashley and Marissa and Betty Sue with blonde hair and accents coo over him.

“Your dad is Aaron Echolls? That’s awesome.

His current girlfriend — and he uses the term loosely — is named Chantisse. She is five foot three, has long, wavy blonde hair, blue eyes, and is from Biloxi, Mississippi.

Apparently, there are worse places than Neptune. Chantisse believes the entire state of Mississippi, and probably the state of Alabama, are these places. Logan has no interest in proving her right or wrong. He likes listening to her talk, and he likes how her accent feels wrapping around his dick when she gives him a blow job. Otherwise, Chantisse is nice but completely forgettable, and he will probably forget her by the end of the summer, and vice versa. Chantisse has an older brother, and he has a friend who joined the Navy and c’est la vie.

“You’re totally spacing during your own haunting, Logan,” Lilly says, snapping her fingers. “That’s a bad sign.”

“Sorry,” he replies, not sorry at all. “Was thinking about my girlfriend. Her name is…”

“Chantisse. I know,” Lilly says, sneering. “What kind of name is Chantisse, anyway?”

“She’s from Biloxi,” Logan says with a shrug. “Southern people are different from here. It’s a trip. You’d have fun at Duke — everyone would be appalled at first and then offer you a beer.”

Lilly laughs. “That sounds like here.”

“Ah, but in the South, better food,” Logan replies.

“Food,” Lilly says, shaking her head. “I almost forgot the taste of food.”

A shadow crosses Lilly’s path, and when Logan looks up, he’s not alone anymore. Weevil’s arrived, and he’s got flowers for Lilly, and Logan might have a new girlfriend, but fuck if he’s going to let Eli Navarro show him up.

So he tries to hit him, and instead, his face catches against Weevil’s, and before either of them can do anything, it’s a kiss. Not a very long or a very good kiss, but it’s a kiss.

“Wow,” Lilly says, leaning against her fountain and looking on without choosing sides. “Shit like this almost makes being dead bearable.”

#2 “For Now and For Always”

This is the stupidest thing Logan has ever done. It is one of the few things in his career of doing stupid shit that might actually get him killed, if Weevil or Mr. Mars or even Duncan finds out.

He is fucking Veronica Mars, and he’s not play-fucking, either. It’s hard, and it’s mean, and it’s up against the wall at Grad Night after two hours of taking hits off a flask Logan smuggled into the family-approved shindig and giving Neptune a proper good-bye. Other people are playing video games, or singing karaoke, or smoking weed in the bathroom, but Logan’s decided to do something truly spectacular to celebrate the end of his high school prison sentence.

Veronica looks different than she used to, hard and sexy and sweaty. She’s trying to brace herself because she is tiny, no lie, fucking hard to hold onto because she’s sweaty because it’s close quarters and she’s being fucked against the gym wall and they’re both drunk and stupid, but he thinks they’ll both remember. He knows he will, and he knows Veronica’s been drinking less than she’s pretended, so he knows she will, too.

They could have been friends once upon a time, but no, this makes it impossible. She’s got her teeth buried in his shoulder, he’s thrusting into her hard, and neither of them can look at each other. Even though it’s good. Especially because it’s good, in a weird half-drunk mistake way, she feels good, Veronica is a good, tight lay and she’s feisty. She’s fucking him as much as he’s fucking her, and she’s already come once, all slippery and making one satisfied little whine before biting down and holding on.

But it doesn’t matter if they don’t look at each other. Lilly is dead; his mother is dead. Her mother is gone. Duncan is rebuilding his life without them. Veronica is going to New York when she goes to college next year, Logan is going to Duke, and they will live happily ever after, never speaking of the other ever again.

He thrusts so hard that he comes, she hits the back of her head against the pebbly stucco of the gym, cries out, and comes along with him.

Thirty seconds later, they have their backs to each other, cleaning up. By the time Logan’s got his jeans zipped up, Veronica’s gone. Left her underwear behind, gone.

Veronica Mars is clearly not one for the afterglow.

#3 “Ever After”

“You’re going to remember me one day, when you’re famous, right?” Logan asks Lilly lazily on a July afternoon, when the sunshine lasts until dawn in Southern California. (He will use this line in his first novel to the delight of his budding fanbase.) They’re cuddled up on Aaron Echolls’ bed — Dad is off shooting a movie, Mom is off getting collagen injections, and Trina is trying to convince a casting director Girls Gone Wild is a valid acting choice.

This is their third time, and every time it gets better. Lilly is beautiful, and she’s fun, and Logan loves her. She snickers and punches him in the arm.

“When I’m famous? What about you?”

“I intend to be un-famous,” Logan said, sitting up in the bed, shit-eating grin on his face. (His latest book earned a three million dollar advance before the movie rights. Half of Hollywood is interested.) “If all goes well, I will be a noted but un-famous video artist who directs visions in artistic crap. Or maybe I’ll try writing.”

“Ew, writing?” asks Lilly. “I thought you said writers were sad, closeted losers who were one step above stalkers.”

“Those are screenwriters,” Logan corrects her, kissing her on the top of her head because he can’t resist the Lilly-ness. (Logan has three screenwriting credits. His third adaptation won a Golden Globe, but that fucker Charlie Kaufman snaked him at the Oscars.) “I mean like a novelist. One of those old guys who wears a jacket, drinks, and writes short stories and novels.”

“Oh,” Lilly says, considering. “Like Stephen King?”

“But attractive. And possibly not famous,” Logan agrees, enjoying how Lilly curls against him and purses her lips. “But you didn’t answer my question. Will you remember me?”

“I’ll always remember you,” Lilly says, because they are fifteen and in love and having sex before it’s a good idea. (His favorite graduate student, who is now twenty-eight, has a six-year-old she named Lilly. She claims it’s his.) “You have to promise to never forget me and always love me. Or I’ll follow you around until you die.”

In retrospect, Logan wishes he hadn’t promised that. Then again, he is fifteen and Lilly is the first, and the apparent love of his life, and he says, “Of course.”

And now he is by a fountain in Savannah, one that is alive with algae and oozing water, and Lilly is sitting next to him, tapping her foot.

She keeps her promises much better than Logan did.

“Savannah’s okay. I like Neptune better,” she says. (Logan has not been home in five years. He hasn’t spoken to Veronica for ten.) “Are you going to try to pick up that one?”

“Lilly, that’s a guy.”

“I know,” Lilly says, and it hurts Logan to know she knows that, too. She knows everything, even things Logan doesn’t.

But she is dead, and he is famous, a famous novelist just like Stephen King, but with all the allure of William Faulkner to boot. The reviews say his work is poignant, and haunted, and emotionally devastating, if a little unbelievable in the number of sheer overwhelming events per novel.

Logan thinks they should try a week of his life sometime.


#1 “Not Like Porn Stars”

True confession: I kissed Lilly more than once. The time in the limo was the most flamboyant and public. Also, probably the last time because Lilly was of the opinion Logan would be too into it if we did it again. I don’t remember.

But I kissed Lilly a couple of times. It was always her idea. We would be hanging out at her place or mine, and everything would be too chill, and she’d jump on the mattress and say, “Kiss me, Veronica Mars!”


“Because we’re young and sexy and every girl should have a gay experience so she can be hip when she’s telling her kids no,” Lilly said. “That’s what my mom told me when she told me about the one time she smoked pot. She made the mistake for me.”

I lifted my eyebrow. “It’s a mistake to be gay?”

“No, but it’s still wild,” Lilly said, puckering up. “Besides, it’ll freak my mom out before she finds her Xanax. Speaking of people who have made more than one mistake. And besides, smoking pot is so last millennium. Fake lesbianism is so in. Think Madonna and Brit, lean in, and kiss me.”

I always did. Mostly it wasn’t serious. Lilly would see how far she could get her tongue down my throat before I choked, or she’d try to bite me, or we’d end up laughing and kicking our feet on the bed.

One time, it was probably more serious. I didn’t think about it at the time, but now that I have more time to think about all my Lilly experiences because they’re done? It was probably more serious.

“Veronica, I swear to God, if I can give you one piece of good advice?” Lilly asked. “Don’t ever fuck Logan Echolls.”

“Not planning to,” I said, peeking out the door. Duncan was around, and whenever he saw me when I was hanging out with Lilly, we’d make kissy faces and I’d stick out my tongue at him and it was a hell of a lot of fun.

“Hey, maybe stop trying to get on my brother and listen, Veronica,” Lilly said angrily. “Jesus.”

“Sorry, Lilly.”

Lilly breathed out, and it even sounded sour and unhappy. “I have terrible taste in men,” she said. “It would be so much easier if I was dating you.”

Then, out of nowhere, she leaned over and kissed me, and that time, no funny stuff. Real kissing, and I had only had a couple of kisses, mostly from Duncan, and I didn’t know what to do, so I kind of stood there and let her do her Lilly thing. Because I was used to that.

After about thirty seconds, Lilly pulled away and flopped back on the bed. “Wow, no lesbian chemistry AT ALL,” she said. “Guess I’m stuck with boys.”

“Sorry,” I said.

“Well, even if I am, Veronica? Don’t fuck Logan,” Lilly said. “I say this out of love. You fuck Logan, it will mess you up.”

I half-laughed. “Okay, I promise.”

“Good,” Lilly said, rocketing up off the bed. “Where should we go hang tonight? I’m tired of this scene…”

#2 “Just Like Porn Stars”

Obviously, I broke my promise to Lilly. I fucked Logan twice, and I liked it a lot both times. What this says about me, you can imagine. The first time was at his grad night, which Wallace got me into with his commando student office skills. We were drinking…I cannot think of a time since I turned eighteen that I can tell a story without leaving that detail out…but it was good stuff, good scotch that Logan had clearly stolen from his dad.

And there was a moment where his hand brushed mine, and then we were kissing, and then I was dry-humping him, and then he had his dick in me so deep that I almost split in two. It was right out of Penthouse Letters, the eager young almost-virgin, the departing psychotic stud, et cetera. I even bit his shoulder to keep from screaming so loud the whole school heard me.

I don’t know. Logan and I always had weird similarities, or so my therapist tells me, and it seemed to get out all the things I felt about him — hatred, betrayal, resentment, lust, shared survivor’s guilt, empathy — and I left a mark. I know because when I fucked him again, when he came to my Grad Night and instead of hanging out at the gym, we went to a hotel and had sex the entire night? It was there.

“I thought about bringing a civil suit for damages, but what would I get?” he told me, because Duke had made Logan even more of an asshole. Weevil had run into him at Lilly’s fountain, and apparently Logan had almost hit him just for bringing flowers for Lilly. “That I can’t already get for free.”

“Oh, that turns me on,” I said, even though I was naked and lying prone on the hotel mattress, screwing around with the remote. And had plans to have yet more sex with Logan before I stumbled home. “Spray me with champagne and make me yours, Logan.”

“And that is why no man will ever want you forever,” Logan said, laying down next to me and half-heartedly copping a feel. “You’re such a mood-killer, Veronica.”

“Except for you,” I said, putting my hand where his half-hard dick was. “You like it when I treat you bad, baby, admit it.”

Possibly, it was the best sex both of us ever had. We didn’t hold back because there was no reason to, no morning after to worry about. Instead, we hated ourselves for enjoying it, and tried to turn each other off by getting into it. I’d moan, he’d make sure I came twice before he did for the bragging rights, and by the morning, we were both sore.

Maybe that’s why he offered amnesty the next morning; he was too tired to be an asshole, and I felt like I’d run a marathon and been in a catfight.

“You wanna take a shower?” he asked. “I’ll scrub your back if you scrub mine.”

“I would,” I said, aware that it was a bad thing to say, a classic Logan thing to say. Probably if I had known how much twelve-stepping that would focus on it, I would have foregone the pleasure, but I was young and screwed up and he was the one I remembered as my first. “But I use the shower to get clean.”

We didn’t say anything after that.

#3 “Ill-Starr’d Love Affair”

“So did we get over it, do you think?” I asked Weevil, who wasn’t so much Weevil when he was Mr. Video Game Designer du Jour, and I was the stereotypical Tisch graduate having dinner bought for me at a Japanese restaurant in Midtown.

“No, of course not,” Eli said, eying my wine glass skeptically. “Logan said you had a taste for alcohol, but isn’t that your third in twenty minutes?”

“Way to dodge the question, Weevil,” I said, fiddling with the glass. “I mean, if anyone got past it, it was you.”

“Me?” Weevil asked, and I was trying, but I couldn’t think of him as Eli Navarro, the face of the hottest video game concern in California, my shot to get a contract with Wired and get my career in forward gear instead of being forced to track down deadbeats for rent and play money. “Having a good job isn’t getting over anything, Veronica.”

“It’s better than being permanently bitter,” I said. “Or being permanently crazy, like Logan.”

He took away my glass of wine then, and set it out of my tiny reach. “You don’t need that,” said Eli, and he smiled at me. “You look different than you used to, girl.”

I touched my hair, dyed brown so that I looked less Californian. Like I said, I took the New York artist thing seriously. I’d even tried being an agent for a publishing house before settling on photography thanks to a set of pictures I did on-location at a crime scene.

Veronica Mars, edgy young artiste. Veronica Mars, the auteur of crime photography. Veronica Mars, alcoholic in therapy unable to find closure. This was not what I meant to make of my life. I meant to find Lilly’s real killer, and put it behind me. Instead, I thought about everything I screwed up. Lilly’s death, Logan, my relationship with my dad (who also thought I was drinking too much), and now I was looking at Weevil and wondering just where I went wrong.

“It’s not the hair,” Weevil added.

And then I was thinking, how much more could I screw up? And why didn’t I realize this was who Weevil would be when we got out of Neptune?

“I fucked Logan,” I said, wishing he would just give me the drink. “Did he tell you about that? I know you two talk.”

“He doesn’t talk about you,” Weevil said. “You must have hurt his feelings big-time, because he won’t say your name. Not for years.”

“Well, that’s part of my whole thing, according to my therapist, or at least I think it was my therapist,” I said, drumming my fingers on the table. “I give too much of myself away, and then I feel vulnerable and scared, and I screw them before they can screw me. It’s a vicious cycle. You should run while you have the chance.”

Eli Navarro, formerly of a motorcycle gang in Neptune, shook his head. He looked thoughtful, and overly civilized, and I really wanted to scream at him for being the grown-up now. “Sometime, you should call him and figure shit out, Veronica,” he said.

“Yeah, I can do that on my own, thanks,” I said. “Could I have my drink back? Talking about Logan makes me edgy.”

He didn’t look happy, but he gave it back.

“I wish,” I said, taking a drink. “Don’t you wish things had gone differently?”

“Who doesn’t?”

I hoped I didn’t hurt him too much, when we stopped having a long-distance affair, or when the morning after was awkward, because Weevil had been my friend even when things sucked, and he was my friend now when I was alienating all my friends.

I needed a few friends again.

“Do you think it’s too late?” I asked, as we went looking for a taxi.

“For you to make up with Logan?”

“For me to be…not this,” I said.

“I dunno,” he said.

The taxi pulled up. “You want to go to my apartment?” I asked, plunging my hands into my coat pockets. “I’ve missed having people around.”

When I saw the look in his eyes, I was glad I wasn’t lying, I was glad that my therapist wasn’t going to yell at me, and possibly, that I wasn’t going to wake up and feel guilty.

“You should call Logan,” he said, hugging my shoulders as we got in the cab. “If you’re looking for closure or whatever, Veronica, there’s your place to start.”

“I’ll look for closure tomorrow,” I said, setting my head on his shoulder. Talking to Logan; who would have thought my redemption started there? Or maybe it was already in progress, like they were always saying in support group.

It was good to have a friend there, either way.


#1 “Trip Down Memory Lane”

I’m getting why the white girl needs an intervention. I ran into her dad before I went out to New York for the conference and interview, and got an email or two from Wallace about Veronica being in bad shape, but it was seeing two empty bottles in reaching distance from the bed that did it for me.

“Do you think it’s too late?” she asked me. How I’m supposed to know, I couldn’t tell you. Maybe mystic colored peoples’ power, the kind that teach pleasant but clueless white people how to play golf or ask the girl of their dreams to the dance. I was a dumb vato who fell for Jake Kane’s daughter, and then got a college scholarship for my pain and old man Kane’s guilt. Save a banger, maybe feel better about how he fucked up his own kid and everyone she ever touched. Who knows?

I shouldn’t have slept with Veronica; I knew she wasn’t with it (shit, I sound uptight when I say that. Logan told me a long time ago that Veronica’s an alcoholic, Wallace told me about the two of them having big-time crazy sex, and Keith asked me to see how she was doing. All of this was a big-ass warning sign to not bang the alcoholic woman) but she was…vulnerable. Like she needed, more than anyone, someone to love her.

Lilly needed someone to love her, too. I told myself I was through with that shit, but turns out despite my last three girlfriends telling me I was emotionally retarded, I still have a few weaknesses.

And a bad habit of going home with little things who want to be loved. But that was never Veronica; Veronica was cool, better than this.

I pull out my cell phone. Fuck this bullshit; I’m calling Logan and telling his gay Southern author ass to get up here and help me out. I’m calling Wallace and telling him to find a shrink, cuz I’m a video game designer, not Jesus Christ. Jesus was never as sexy as me, one, and I have my own problems, two, without having Veronica’s to deal with.

Logan would come. He hates her, but he’d come to stand in front of Veronica and say, “who’s fucked up now?” Of course, he’s fucking crazy, and he’s fucking his gardener, who don’t speak one word of English except “blow job” “rim job” and “ass fuck” as far as I can tell, but he ain’t a drunk who can’t get over it.

And right as I’m staring at my cell phone, it rings. I pick up before I realize who it’s got to be.

“Weevil?” she asks, sounding all sleepy and dreamy and kind of hung over.

“Yeah?” I ask.

“Where’d you go? I was going to take us out for breakfast. I know a place down near St. Mark’s,” she asks, yawning. “You don’t have to go already, do you?”

“I…have a meeting,” I say, checking my watch. A noon meeting. Did I tell her when it was? And then she’s got to take my pictures at her studio, and I have to make sure my company doesn’t stiff her, even if she’s not in their preferred style. They wanted someone more “new school” for the Wired profile; I pointed out she had connections to me and Jake Kane, and they decided why not Veronica Mars? She had some buzz, after all.

“At noon,” says Veronica. “But that’s cool. I’ll talk to you at the studio. That’s at two, isn’t it?”

“Yeah…yes,” I say, remembering that I haven’t been Weevil in a long time. That’s the kind of power Veronica has over me, to make Eli Navarro Weevil again, to make me feel like I’m eighteen, never-gonna-be-any good, and fucking crazy over a crazy white woman. “You’ll be there?”

“I’ll be there. Will you?” she asks, clearly pissed and clearly hurt. This is not my problem, I tell myself. It’s hers for thinking I could fix her.

I was never going to be the guy who saved Veronica Mars. Just like I was never going to be Lilly’s boyfriend; it was a bunch of Hallmark bullshit straight outta Hollywood to sucker chicks out of money.

#2 “Trip Like I Do”

Weevil is sure that Logan’s on something. They keep running into each other at Lilly’s fountain, and Logan’s always trying to get on his ass.

This week, it’s the Kane scholarship. “What’d you have to do, service Celeste?” Logan asks, tossing pennies into the fountain. Weevil knows for a fact that fucks up the flow mechanism and furthermore, bugs the shit out of the school janitor. If he told Logan this, next week Logan would be chucking Canadian pennies into the fountain for shits and giggles.

“I don’t know what I did,” Weevil says. “I’m guessing it’s blood money, or Duncan said something, or shit, what is your problem, Echolls?”

“You touched Lilly, that’s my problem, you fucking beaner,” Logan replies. He doesn’t look like he’s sleeping. Weevil wouldn’t sleep too good in Logan’s house, neither. Crazy fucking people, all of them. “And Trina’s in town, and she wants to know if I can score her weed, and I fucking hate this town. I should have stayed at Duke.”

“Nobody would have stopped you, I’m guessing,” Weevil says. “Why’d you come back? Besides the fine, fine ass of one Veronica Mars…”

“Don’t talk to me about that bitch,” Logan says. Which seems like bullshit to Weevil, given Logan called bragging about how he was going to tap some ass post-Grad Night in a hotel he’d paid straight cash for to keep Daddy Mars off his trail. Maybe Veronica told him where he could put his dick, and it wasn’t in her.

“Ouch,” Weevil says. “Trouble with the hotel room?”

“I said,” and Logan gets up and shoves Weevil, “Don’t TALK to me about her. I don’t care if Veronica Mars is currently on fire, I don’t want to hear about her. Ever.”

“Women,” Weevil says, wondering what the fuck went down.

“You fucking said it. Lilly never shuts up, and then…yeah, fuck it, women,” Logan says. “Let’s go score Trina weed and smoke it ourselves, proving what fine specimens of American manhood we are.”

“Fuck that shit, I don’t need pot to love my manhood,” Weevil says, sick of Logan’s weird-ass fucking ways. “Or prove how fine the specimen is, either.”

“Yeah?” and Logan gets up in Weevil’s face. “Maybe I do.”

And that is all kinds of fucked up right there, and it’s more fucked up that Weevil doesn’t push Logan out of the way. But it’s all about pride and curiosity. Because no way is Weevil backing down from that, not when Logan Echolls is saying what Weevil thinks he’s saying.

#3 “I Do”

Best memory of my life.

Lilly outlined in sunlight. Standing in ‘Eli’s homeboy’s sister’s’ bedroom, in a pair of tight-ass little shorts, a t-shirt, and those stupid platform sandals all the girls are wearing. I can remember this perfectly, can remember being Eli for someone other than my grandma.

“You love me, don’t you?” she asks me, turning this way and that.

“Hell, yeah,” I say, trying to reach out and touch someone. Lilly giggles, and skips backward. I can’t believe she can do it in those shoes.

Then she reaches down and peels off her t-shirt, and my dick is harder than steel. Especially when she throws the t-shirt at me and I can lift it up, sniff it, and grin at her suggestively.

“Do you love my tits?” she asks, putting her hands over her bra, which I will always remember was light pink, with little frilly things on the straps. “They’re pretty fantastic, aren’t they?”

“Yeah, they are,” I say. Lilly smiles approvingly; this is a good answer. She reaches around behind her back, shoves her tits out even further and then unhooks her bra. “I fucking love your tits, Lilly.”

“I love them, too,” Lilly says, dangling her bra on one finger. I will never stop being amazed at how girls can get those things off without looking in five seconds flat. “What else do you love?”

“I love your belly ring,” I say. “I love how you always pull up your shirt in PE to show it off.”

Lilly smiles, runs her hand over her belly. “It’s hot, isn’t it?” she agrees, turning around like a model. “One hot package, right here.”

“Hot as hell,” I agree, not sure if she wants me to do anything besides tell her she’s hot.

“I like my toes,” Lilly says, sitting down on Mariah’s bed and kicking off each shoe, pointing her feet at me. “I used to do ballet, because I’m a superstar in training.”

“My little cousin, yeah, she wants to do ballet,” I say to make conversation.

“Oh, she shouldn’t, it sucks,” Lilly says quickly, before looking down at her breasts again and putting her hands all over ’em. “Tell me that you like me some more.”

“I like you so much,” I say, transferring my ass over to Mariah’s bed and sitting next to her. “I like the way you walk, the way you talk, all of your toes…I like how you wiggle your ass when you run…”

Lilly puts her head on my shoulder. “You’ll always like me,” she says softly. “Right? Even if you know I’m not always…like everyone thinks I am.”

“Always, Lilly,” I say. “Don’t worry.”

“I’m Lilly Kane. I never worry,” Lilly contradicts me, wiggling under my arm. “I just…sometimes need someone to make me feel safe. Like I’m always loved. Do you love me?”

Sometimes love is simple. I should have told myself that the simplest things are never what they seem, that you can’t trust love to be enough, but I was in love with that girl, and I wanted to make her happy like nobody else. It was the first time I could ever do something like that, and it was a better feeling than Lilly’s little hand getting closer and closer to my dick. I could love Lilly, better than her frat-asshole boyfriend, than her weird-ass family, than anyone.

I touched her cheek, smiled at her. Felt my heart pounding like it was the first time I was riding a bike down the PCH, the first time I ever kissed a girl, but different. More real somehow.

“I do.”



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