Summary: Logan returns home from deployment just in time to help Veronica (finally) move into her new apartment.

Never Happier

He hadn't been sure what to make of the fact that she hadn't found a place in Neptune for the whole six months that he had been deployed. She had had her things shipped over from New York, but most of them remained boxed up in her dad's guest room, waiting for a permanent home without any real promise of one. Not that he had a place of his own either, but with the long stretches of time that he was in another part of the world, it had always just seemed more practical to keep his things at Dick's. It wasn't like Dick didn't have the room and he tended to be over there a fair amount when he was stateside anyway. Veronica, on the other hand, had told him she was moving back to Neptune. That indicated a sort of permanent stay that should have warranted digs of her own and the way she kept sidestepping the answer had started to make him nervous.

It wasn't until Logan actually got back that he found the real answer, and he had teased her mercilessly for it.

"See, you say you were waiting on the perfect apartment to open up and all I'm hearing is you were waiting on me to come home so you wouldn't have to hire movers," he said as he passed through the doorway with his arms full of as many boxes as he dared to stack on top of one another.

"Rude," Veronica laughed from her place leaned against a bookshelf that hadn't found a home yet. She kicked out, her for nudging the back of his knee so that he just about lost everything. She shot him a sheepish grin as he turned. Like she knew she hadn't thought it through. Good thing there was nothing breakable in these particular boxes. "I do pay in pizza and beer."

"Really?" He dropped the load down in a corner. "Because I was under the distinct impression sex was part of my fee. Looks like you're on your own for that fridge."

He turned and found her there, that bright, playful smile he had missed tugging into place. She wrapped her arms around his neck and tipped up, her lips painfully close to his without actually touching. "I think we can come to some kind of arrangement."

Logan wasn't willing to wait. Instead he leaned in, the kiss playful as he picked her up off of her feet and there was no hesitation as she wrapped her legs around his waist so she had the leverage to deepen the kiss. "Shoulda started with the bed," he mumbled.

"You'd think we'd learn."

His kisses started traveling down her jaw to her neck, but he paused in place as they heard a shout from the beach below. "Dude, is someone moving in or is this free stuff?"

"We should probably finish getting the stuff in," he grumbled softly.

Veronica gave a loud, dramatic sigh as she slid back to standing and then started for the door. "Don't touch my shit! We're moving in!"

"We?" Logan echoed smally, but she didn't hear him. She was already terrorizing the poor surfers that had been loitering about down there. He stepped out onto the small porch just outside her front door and watched as she chased the two teens down the way, a smile tugging into place. She was beautiful, even hot and sweaty from moving, hair tied up and flushed from yelling. He leaned against the railing and watched in amusement. That fire had never died in her and he loved it.

"What are you gawking at up there, sailor?" she teased and he gave her a wink.

"Oh, just this crazy lady with a taser."

"They better be glad I didn't have my taser," she huffed and he started down the stairs. The sooner they got everything in, the sooner they could get back to remembering just how much they'd missed each other while he'd been gone. And for the last nine years or so, but hey.

A few more boxes and a fridge later they had everything inside and Veronica closed the door and cranked down the air conditioning, half collapsing next to the closest set of boxes. Logan disappeared into the bedroom to make sure the bed was put together. It was an adventure of its own and it shouldn't have been nearly as difficult as it turned out to be. He handled multi-billion dollar equipment in life or death situations with ease, but finding the correct screws for the headboard seemed to be outside of his skill set. Well, it wasn't like he'd put together a whole lot of furniture in his lifetime. Maybe it was just time for a break.

"You want me to order the pizza?" he called out into the living room where Veronica had gone strangely quiet. When he didn't receive an answer, Logan unfolded himself from the floor and his circle of useless and ill fitting screws to pad his way into the living room. "Veronica?"

She was seated on the floor with her back to him, her shoulders hunched forward and her focus fixed on something in her hands. She didn't react as he drew closer, her steps quiet but not silent, and he saw what had her attention.

Nimble, pale fingers caressed photos that had to have been twelve or thirteen years old, but he knew the faces well. "That was Lilly's sixteenth birthday party, wasn't it?"

His voice seemed to break the spell and Veronica looked back and up at him. "Yeah."

Logan took a seat with her, his brown eyes scanning the laughing faces of his high school girlfriend, best friend, and the girl that had grown into the woman he loved. They'd been so young. So free. Lilly's death had changed so much.

"I still miss her," Veronica said quietly. "It was strange in New York because no one there knew her. It's not that I missed her any less, just that no one could…"

"Get it?"

"Yeah."

"Is it okay to admit I miss her too?" Logan asked softly as he picked a photo out of the pile. Lilly was smiling brightly for the camera in one outstretched hand. Her other arm was around a fifteen-year-old Logan's neck as she pulled him in, a bottle of champagne held in that hand. They'd both been well past tipsy by that point.

Veronica made a small sound of acknowledgement and leaned into him. Logan shifted and wrapped one arm around her shoulders to give her more support in her lean. He pressed a kiss to her blonde hair.

"You think she'd be happy for us?"

It took him a moment to register the question. "Seventeen-year-old Lilly, probably not. But don't worry. She'd be pissed at me, not you."

His girlfriend laughed softly at that. "And now? If she'd lived? Do you think we'd still be together?"

"Yes." There wasn't a millisecond of hesitation in his answer and Veronica turned to look at him, those clear blue eyes of hers boring into his soul. He purses his lips together, digging deep for the courage to be raw and honest. "I've had a lot of time to think about a lot of things over the years. After you transferred to Stanford, when you went to New York, this deployment….. Nothing feels right without you. You may not have been the only one ever, but you're the one."

He watched, terrified of the response and wondering if it would have been better to opt for a more typical tease. The mood had been heavy enough without him dropping that on her, no matter how deeply he felt it. He watched as Veronica's expression softened slowly from curiosity to something like awe and she reached up to pull him into a gentle kiss. "Our story is epic," she whispered.

"Years and continents," he agreed and returned the kiss.

"I want to think she's happy for us," Veronica whispered.

"Me too, but she'd probably give us hell for being so sappy."

Veronica choked on a laugh and Logan flashed her a grin as she rocked back to settle on the floor again. She looked at the photos. "I haven't gotten much done."

"Yeah, we're going to need to call someone to put that bed together."

"Seriously?" He snorted and she grinned, nudging his shoulder. She stuck her hand out. "Give me the screwdriver and go order the pizza. I'll take care of it."

"Oh. You're supposed to use a screwdriver?" he teased and she swatted at him, barely missing as he popped to his feet. He found his phone on the counter as she started back for the bedroom.

"No spinach!" she shouted over her shoulder and Logan found himself smiling. He took one more glance back at the piles of photos that would be tucked back away by the end of the night and he hoped Veronica was right that Lilly would be happy for them. He knew he was. He'd never been happier than each new moment he lived knowing Veronica Mars loved him.


Notes:

I've had people recommending that I watch Veronica Mars for years, and I finally did. It took me far less time than it should have to binge the show from S1 through the movie and to the end of S4 (I refuse to acknowledge that the last 10 minutes or so of S4 exist and/or are canon). I've fallen hard for these two, and while I'm working on a multi chapter in another fandom I thought one shots would be a nice way to let some of the plot bunnies run free without needing to keep to a strict schedule.

So here we go. The first in a line of short ideas I have. The will all take place in the same 'verse and will be set between the end of the movie and the beginning of S4, but may not be in chronological order.

I'm hoping the fandom is still reading. If you are, please let me know what you think!