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Beauty Sleep

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2006

Veronica stretches, yawning. It may be ridiculous that her boyfriend lives in a hotel suite, but damn it if the Neptune Grand doesn't own up to its price tag when it comes to the comfort of the mattresses. Or maybe the quality of the sleep she manages to get every time she sleeps over is due to the late-night activities. Either way, she slept soundly, once again, and by the looks of it, Logan is enjoying a peaceful sleep as well. She smiles and resists the urge to kiss the shoulder right in front of her face, getting out of bed quietly instead. He deserves to sleep in, too, after last night's performance.

She tugs her shirt off – his shirt, actually, but she doesn't think Logan's worn it in months, and certainly not since they got back together at the beginning of the summer – and lets it fall among the rest of the clothing littering the floor. She takes one last look at Logan's sleeping form – god he's handsome – before slipping into his bathroom and turning the shower on. It still kind of impresses her how fast the water turns hot in his shower, and she barely has time to pick at her too-small breasts and too-scrawny form in the mirror before it's time to jump in.

It's fine, she thinks as she scrubs her body. Logan doesn't mind. She scrubs harder. Logan's been with many much more beautiful, curvy, experienced women, too, but he likes her. He does, she repeats firmly in her head, scrubbing almost violently at this point. He even said she was beautiful, just last night, with a few expletives if she remembers correctly, so, there. It's all good. It doesn't matter if she's scrawny and her breasts are small and her hips are just a tad asymmetrical. Logan likes her. He may even more-than-like her, but that's neither here nor there.

When Veronica gets out of the shower, her skin a bit too red, and she dries herself off absentmindedly with a towel – another good thing about the Grand: fluffy towels every day – she takes a glance at the time. Just after 9AM. She can let Logan sleep some more.

She spends the next hour going over some of the case files she brought over, checking up on her dad (currently in Nevada chasing a bail jumper) and ordering room service breakfast – the Neptune Grand's accommodations and her boyfriend's bottomless credit card just don't stop being useful, no matter how vehemently she refuses that he spend money on her – but there's only so much she can do with limited resources and in silence. And doesn't Logan surf? Surely he can wake up much earlier than this.

She makes her way back to the bedroom to find sunlight filtering over Logan's bare chest, the boy himself sprawled out in the middle of the bed, subconsciously making the most of Veronica having left him alone in it. Fuck he looks good. Veronica almost feels bad for crawling up the bed with the firm intention of waking him. Almost.

She kisses his cheek lightly. Nothing. She shakes his shoulder, still lightly. Nothing.

“Logan.”

Still nothing. She gives his shoulder a firmer shake, and finally he frowns, moaning as he yawns. His pout tells her he's awake, he just doesn't want to open his eyes.

“Hey, sleepyhead,” she teases. “You're pretty enough without the extra beauty sleep. Get up.”

That gets him to smile, really smile, and he opens his eyes a sliver, peering up at her through his eyelashes and the sun.

“You don't look too bad yourself.”

Veronica rolls her eyes. “That won't lure me back into bed with you, you know.”

“Worth a try.”

He sits up and she leans back, a smile playing on her lips at his still sleep-filled appearance. She traces the leftover mark from a pillow on his cheek and he uses the opportunity to feather a kiss to hers.

"Aren't you a surfer?" she asks him, circling back to her earlier thoughts. "How do you even get time to surf when you wake up this late?"

Logan settles a pillow on the headboard to sit up against it, then tugs Veronica along so she's sitting right beside him, head on his shoulder as he plays with her hair.

“Well, see, I do surf.”

“Mm-hm,” she nods.

“But while it often is the most tantalizing option for me, it seems that I tend to stay in bed much, much longer when you're in it.”

“I haven't been in it for an hour.”

“The sheets still smell like you.”

It's stupid, it really is. But she can't help the smile she tries to bite down, ducking her head, and she can't help the warm, fuzzy feeling spreading through her at his words.

“Just say you're lazy.”

“Only for you.”

She smacks his chest, but her heart's not in it.

“That doesn't make sense.” And it’s not true at all, you were very much not lazy last night.

“Nothing does.”

She rolls her eyes as he rolls her around to face him, but he stops before their lips touch, inches separating them still.

“What was so urgent that you had to wake me up?”

She blushes slightly. “Nothing in particular.”

He looks delighted by her answer.

“Nothing?” he repeats. “Well, look at that.”

“Shut up,” she mutters, just as their lips crash together, silencing the start of a laugh on Logan’s end.

He ends up managing to lure her back into bed after all, where they eat the breakfast she ordered, and where they stay lounging most of the day.

And she thinks maybe she loves him, but it doesn't really matter right now. She's got all her life to figure it out and tell him, maybe, one day.

She's pretty sure he loves her too, because he doesn't need to say it for her to see it. He's an open book.

 

2016

Veronica snuggles tightly around the pillow tucked between her arms, against her cheek. She can feel sleep slip away from her but she clings to it, closing her eyes just that much tighter, because her dream was too good, too peaceful, too ideal. Most of the time, she tries to forget the dreams of that sort for her own sanity, but today, she can't remember why, but she has a feeling it's okay to let herself dream about Logan just this one time. Logan, and their golden summer(s) together, and... and she doesn't know at this moment in her life what exactly she should remember about Logan that made him the one that stuck in her dreams the past nine years but maybe it's just the way she still feels. It's not so much the tangible memories as the memory of the feelings.

She really, really wants to get back to her dreams, back to sleep, back to Logan, but she can feel now that she's thinking too much to manage to float back properly into sleep, and she can feel someone looming over her. Ugh, not Piz and his morning breath trying to tell her all cutely that he's leaving but actually judging her. She can't deal with Piz right now.

But then – okay, and that's weird – she can feel lips sliding against hers and it's – it's actually nice and soft and warm and that's definitely not Piz.

She cracks open an eye and her face breaks into a lazy grin. She remembers now, as she sees Logan gazing down at her with that spark in his eye and his smile that she just… she can't even find the proper adjective to describe his smile, it's just a Logan smile and she can't believe she managed to go nine years without them.

“Hey sleepyhead, you're pretty enough without that extra beauty sleep. Get up,” he whispers, and she smiles even wider.

“I can't believe you remember that.”

“I remember a lot of things.”

“I didn't think you'd remember those things.”

“Well, you did tell me that at least a dozen times back then. And you're pretty memorable,” he adds, running a hand down her cheek and leaning down to kiss her again.

She hungrily replies to the kiss, all her desire to sleep forgotten because she’s got the real thing right there, for six more days but she won’t think about that deadline, and it’s even better than she remembers. Every time is better than she remembers, no matter if she’s conjuring up memories of nine years ago or nine seconds ago.

“Maybe I should wake you up more often,” Logan remarks when they break apart, his grin starting to get dangerously close to a smirk. That military life of his has really turned the tables here. Who would have thought he’d be the one up at the crack of dawn?

“Maybe you should maximize your chances of being there to wake me up from now on.”

Logan’s eyebrows shoot up, and she knows why. She doesn’t think she’s made any direct reference to the future – their future – since whatever this thing between them is started (again). And she still hasn’t with this cheeky remark. But he’s going so soon and she can’t bring herself to be careful anymore. She just got out of a relationship – she hasn’t even made arrangements to collect her things in New York yet – and his most recent girlfriend just got murdered. It’s so ridiculously wrong and ludicrous to an external eye and that’s exactly why she just can’t care right now, because no matter what she does it will seem insane. So if Logan gets an inkling of what it means to her to have him back, then Logan gets an inkling of what it means to her to have him back. She might as well tell him she wants to wake up next to him again tomorrow, and the next day, and the day after that, every day until he leaves, and then again when he comes back in six months. She doesn’t know if he wants to come home to her, doesn’t know if he thinks she wants him to come home to her anymore. But the looks they’ve been exchanging, and the kisses, and the late nights, and the dinner dates, and the fact that they’ve barely spent a second apart since he was exonerated, speak louder than any words. She knows she should say some words. But she doesn’t know where to start, because there’s so much to say, so many bases to cover.

“I think I will,” he replies, against her lips, and then he’s kissing her again and it seems so simple. It’s so comically simple how it is between the two of them, that she can’t help but ask herself why the hell it took her so long to come back, why she kept fighting this, why they always let complications get in the way of what was clearly right.

Why she went so far away to look for her home when it was right there all along, waking her up with kisses and memories and making her forget that what they’re building isn’t remotely normal.

And maybe if she feels brave later today, she’ll tell him. Because no fucking way is she letting him get away this time.