Kindness Of Strangers (working title for this fic, this is going to be part of a much longer series, which is still untitled)Author:
Veronica/Billy Riggins (Friday Night Lights
pg-13, for use of the f-wordSummary:
Prologue to a longer fic putting Veronica into the FNL universeSpoilers/Warnings:
set post Not Pictured
, and around the same chronological time in the FNL-verse, so June 2006 would make it pre-series.A/N:
Okay, this is a weird little crossover couple that I’m becoming obsessed with. I did a drabble request a month or so ago, and someone requested Veronica/Billy. And in the drabble, I just dashed off Veronica telling him she loved him, with no prompting, just in a simple moment between them. And then I did a double-take, because that’s very out of character for Veronica, but I liked it, so I kept it like that. And I started to think of how she could get to that point, with a guy like Billy, who definitely has his share of demons but is so different from Logan and Duncan and probably every other guy she’s ever met. Then this story started to take shape in my mind, with reasons for Veronica going to Dillon in the first place (which alters the ending of NP
, but that’s not important just yet). I sort of just wanted to throw this idea out to you all, and see if anyone else thinks it’s plausible. I feel way more nervous writing Veronica than I do Billy, because he’s still a fairly minor character, and I have more I can play around with, so don’t worry if you don’t watch FNL. (Though, if you don’t watch FNL, and want a visual, this
is the actor who plays Billy. His name is Derek Phillips.)
Thanks to anyone who takes the time to read this.
She felt like she was in the middle of The Blair Witch Project
. Except she was out on the open road, and there was no woods around her, and really it wasn’t like it at all, but there was something so damn scary about not being able to see a foot in front of her face. And this was Texas, and she was just a wee bitty California girl, driving across the country in her car that was older than she was. To top it all off, she was Veronica Mars- of course she was going to break down in the middle of the night, in the middle of nowhere.
The battery was running low on her flashlight, it kept flickering on and off, and it was so damn cold out here in her thin little jean jacket, she could barely hold it steady as she tried to check the plugs and the carburetor and the oil. Even if she figured out exactly what was wrong with LeBaron, there was nothing she could do about it. Her cell phone was dying too- she couldn’t charge it without turning on the car, but that didn’t matter. There was no signal out here anyway.
She wished she had Back-Up with her. He’d practically barricaded the door from letting her go when she left him at Wallace’s, but she couldn’t take him with her. She couldn’t take anyone with her. And now she was almost sorry she had been so stubborn when Logan offered to come.
Veronica got back in her car, sighed, and rested her forehead on the steering wheel. It seemed she had felt alone all her life, but this made her feel like she was the only person on earth. She glanced at her watch. Just after one a.m. She pushed her seat back and locked the doors. Might as well get some sleep- she’d been driving for a day and a half straight, and there was nothing she could do about it now. She closed her eyes and tried to relax- she’d been strung so tight since that night. Graduation, Cassidy, her dad...She hadn’t stopped for a second to think about any of it. Not to mention the very reason she was in Texas. And she certainly didn’t want to start now, but she literally could not keep her eyes open for another second.
No sooner had Veronica allowed herself to doze off when she nearly jumped out of her skin when she heard something tapping at her window. Feeling all the invisible hairs on her body standing on end, she cracked one eye open. There was...a zombie outside her window. Or a vampire. Or the Texas Chainsaw Murderer. Or someone- something. Veronica’s heart pounded in her ears. He-or it
, rather- knocked again. Her breath coming in quick hyperventilations, she inched her fingers towards her bag on the passenger seat, with her trusty taser. Dear god, she’d escaped being burned to death, she’d missed being pushed off the roof of the Neptune Grand- now she was going to fall prey to some deranged cowboy serial killer? “I’m coming out,” she called, her voice sound rough and hoarse and not her voice at all.
It was instinct. Even if she got him down on the ground, she had nowhere to run. But she slowly eased out of the car, and saw him reaching for her- and she dug the taser into his side, shocking him good, and he crumbled to the ground with a howl of pain- “Jesus! Fuck!
”- and she took off down the road. She hadn’t gotten more than a few feet past her car when she felt two big, rough hands closing over her arms and lifting her in the air, and she let out a blood-piercing scream to wake the dead.
“Shit...Fuck, girl! Quiet your ass down!” And Veronica was still shaking all over when he set her back on her feet. She whirled around to see him covering his ears, and still twisted over at the gut in pain. “Shit, I...I ain’t gonna hurt you.”
“Oh yeah?” Veronica said, flashing her taser at him again, and he jumped back. “Bet you say that to all the girls.”
“No...Ser’ously, I just thought...I dunno, flat tire or something...See if you needed any help,” he said, taking a deep breath and standing up straight again. He wasn’t as tall as he had looked when Veronica was sitting in her car, but he was still broad-shouldered and barrel-chested. Her eyes had adjusted a little, and out of the corner of her eye, she could see he had an early 90's model pick-up truck, still running and giving off a bit of light.
Veronica took a deep breath, but didn’t lower her taser. “The engine’s dead,” she answered. She shifted her weight from one foot to the other. “I can change a tire myself,
“Shoot, girl,” he said, still breathing hard, and clutching one hand to his side. “You prolly threaten that tire to death if it don’t change.” He put both hands up in resignation. “Ser’ously...Sorry I scared you.”
Veronica’s hand tightened on her taser, but she lowered it. “Well...I just need a cell phone, um....Mine doesn’t seem to work out here.” She paused. “Sorry...For tasering you.”
She could see him roll his eyes. “Yeah, sure, apology accepted...Look, you’re not gonna get a cell phone signal out here, not for another five miles or so down the road.”Fantastic.
She looked back to her car. Poor LeBaron.
“Five miles, huh?”
“Yeah, that’s...That’s Dillon you’re right outside of,” he waved his hand down the road. “Look, there’s...There’s a motel in town. I can take you there, you can get your car in the morning.” Veronica pulled back, wrapping an arm around her waist. Her fingers were so tight around her taser, they were liable to break off. He laughed, low and husky. “Shoot girl, you’re gonna have to learn to trust the kindness of strangers.” Veronica laughed, more like a bitter exhalation than a chuckle. He was still standing back from her, not invading her space at all, but he did reach out a hand. “I’m Bill.” Veronica stared at his hand for a good long minute, until he spoke up, “Well, shoot girl, it ain’t gonna bite.”
Chewing on her bottom lip and tilting her head to the left, she gingerly placed her hand in his. He was rough and callused. “Veronica.”
“These days, I’m afraid she’s not even sure her name is Veronica,
” Bill crooned, and through the darkness she could see a hint of a playful smile on his lips.
She groaned. “Oh yeah, never
got that before.”
“Well...Sorta pleased to meet you, Veronica,” he said in his flat Texas drawl. “Get in the truck.” Veronica looked back to her LeBaron. She didn’t have much in there, but still...it was all she had in the world. “Don’t worry about your little convertible...This road ain’t gonna see another soul until you get back to it.”
Veronica sighed. She really had no other choice. She followed Bill, hitching herself up into the passenger seat of his truck. Inside the cab of the truck, she finally got a good look at him. She couldn’t tell his age- somewhere between twenty and thirty, and it was hard to pinpoint it any more than that. He was sort of good-looking in a rough and tumble sort of way- certainly no California boy, but he had hard lines around his mouth and across his forehead that would have suited someone much older. He looked up at her after starting the engine. His deep brown eyes were kind and gentle. She had to smile at him. “Thanks for this. And really, sorry I tasered you. Guess I don’t need this around here, huh?”
He grinned, pulling the truck into drive. “Shoot girl, this is Texas,” he drawled as they started down the dark road. “I carry a shotgun with me.”