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1.14 Mars vs. Mars

Teleplay by: Jed Seidel and Diane Ruggiero
Story by: Rob Thomas
Directed by: Marcos Siega

Original Air Date: 15 February, 2005
Transcribed by Inigo

VERONICA VOICEOVER: Previously on Veronica Mars…

Abel Koontz is interviewed by Veronica in 108 Like a Virgin.

VERONICA: You never saw Lilly Kane in your life. Why would you confess to killing her?

KOONTZ: Do you wanna know how I bashed your friend’s brains in? I know who you are, Veronica Mars.

Rebecca and Duncan talk in their counselling session, from 112 Clash of the Tritons.

REBECCA: How long have you been feeling like this?

DUNCAN: Since I stopped taking my meds.

Cut to Veronica listening in her car in the same episode.

VERONICA VOICEOVER: So what exactly is your mystery illness Duncan and what other pills are you taking?

Aaron and Logan pause at the front door in 113 Lord of the Bling.

AARON: I know you blame me for your mother’s death. Let’s make a deal. Our war’s over now.

Logan and Duncan talk in Logan’s room in the same episode.

LOGAN: They didn’t find a body because she’s not dead, she just escaped.

Cut to Veronica opening the door of the apartment to find Logan standing outside, from the same episode.

VERONICA: Logan, what are you doing here?

LOGAN: I want you to find my mother.

End previously.

EXT – MARS RESIDENCE – NIGHT, CONTINUING.

The scene continues without pause from where it left off.

LOGAN: Relax, I'm not asking you to drag the lake. My mother didn't really kill herself.

VERONICA: [softly] Come inside, okay?

INT – MARS RESIDENCE – CONTINUING.

Veronica steps back as Logan enters the apartment, his arms still wrapped around his body.

LOGAN: Veronica, she's not dead.

VERONICA: [carefully] What makes you think she's still alive?

LOGAN: [impatiently] Why does everyone assume that she's not? I mean, there's no body.

VERONICA: What about the woman who saw her jump? It's been on every channel.

LOGAN: [quietly sarcastic] Well, if she's on the TV, she must be telling the truth. But her credit cards were missing. I mean, doesn't that seem like... [voice shaking] I don't know, a clue? You don't jump off a bridge with your platinum card.

VERONICA: Logan, I-

LOGAN: [insistent] I know my mother!

VERONICA: Okay...

Logan lets out a big sigh and looks down at his hands. He is still carrying Lynn’s lighter. Throughout this scene, Veronica speaks softly and sympathetically, but with a view to trying to reason with him.

VERONICA: I heard she left a note.

LOGAN: Well, yeah, she wants people to think she's dead. But if she was going to really do the deed, it’d be chardonnay and sleeping pills.

Logan smiles.

LOGAN: You know, she wouldn't risk being found bug-eyed and bloated in some shrimp net.

VERONICA: I'll see what I can find out.

Logan turns to go.

LOGAN: You know I...

He pauses, framed in the doorway.

LOGAN: I just need to know she's…okay.

He leaves as Veronica stares after him.

INT – NEPTUNE HIGH SCHOOL (NHS), CLASSROOM – DAY.

There is an abrupt change of mood as students, their desks arranged facing each other across the classroom, slap their desks and tap their feet rhythmically. The teacher, Mr Rooks prowls the central walkway created by the arrangement. The students include Veronica and Wallace.

MR ROOKS: Scholars! Thinkers! Learnéd charges. You asked for it. You got it. World history review, roundup and death match.

STUDENTS: Woo.

MR ROOKS: Who will reign supreme? Will it be…

Rooks points to the students in the group opposite Veronica’s.

MR ROOKS: …the Age of Enlightenment Rock Stars?

AGE OF ENLIGHTMENT GROUP: Ooga-booga-ooga-booga!

MR ROOKS: Or will it be the Children of the Industrial Revolution?

CHILDREN OF THE INDUSTRIAL REVOLTION GROUP: Ah-ooga!

The camera closes in on Veronica, with Wallace sitting behind her. Both are enjoying themselves immensely.

MR ROOKS: Blood is in the air. Blood! Round one! Let's take a look at the board!

Rooks has an overhead projector set up at one end of the room to shine onto the blackboard at the other end. He removes a strip of paper to reveal written at the top of a slide: Five Leading Causes of the Fall of the Roman Empire.

MR ROOKS: The question is what are five leading causes of the fall of the Roman Empire?

The student next to Veronica presses the small bell on his desk. The students start to click their fingers.

MR ROOKS: Team captain Corazon Soliman, your answer?

STUDENT: The Huns kicked their ass.

The students laugh and look up at Rooks.

MR ROOKS: The correct answer was invading Germanic hordes.

The students groan a little as Rooks presses his hand to his ear.

MR ROOKS: Judges? Judges award the point! Children of the Industrial Revolution, you control the board!

The students celebrate as Rooks reveals the second answer on the list on the projector: 2. Invading Germanic Hordes. Rooks then starts clicking his own fingers as he observes them.

MR ROOKS: You know the rules. I can call on any team member. Who will be the weakest link? Wallace Fennel, show me what you got.

WALLACE: All right, Mr Rooks. They relied too much on slave labour.

MR ROOKS: Can I see slave labour?

Rooks goes back to the projector and pulls another strip away revealing: 4. Over Reliance on Slave Labor. There’s more cheering.

MR ROOKS: Two more answers. Uh-oh. I see someone hiding back there, trying to disappear completely. Carrie Bishop. [with gusto] Sock it to me, baby!

Carrie is clearly not into the fun at all. She smiles but there is no humour in it.

CARRIE: The answer is I'm not pregnant.

Rooks’ face drops and the students stop clicking their fingers, shocked.

CARRIE: So you can quit dodging my calls and you can keep your money to [air quotes] take care of it. And while we're at it…

She throws him a key.

CARRIE: …here's your key back. I won't be needing it anymore.

Opening credits.

INT – NHS, CLASSROOM – DAY.

Veronica is the last student left in Rooks’ classroom. She approaches him.

VERONICA: Are you okay?

MR ROOKS: Oh, been better. [sighs heavily] She's making it up, you know. I never touched that girl. I've never seen her outside of class.

VERONICA: I know.

MR ROOKS: Yeah, but it's not going to matter. Class has been out less than a minute and…I would guess that everyone in this school has heard by now.

Veronica turns her head to see where Rooks is looking. It is through the open door of the classroom where some students are peering in, gossiping.

VERONICA: That's probably a good guess.

MR ROOKS: This is all I ever wanted to do. And it's over.

VERONICA: Not if I can help it.

Rooks gives her a resigned look.

EXT – NHS, LUNCH AREA – DAY.

Cheerleaders carrying their lunches past some of the outdoor tables. They pass Carrie, who is sitting alone at one of the tables. Three girls are at a table behind her. One of the girls starts to sing the Police’s “Don’t Stand So Close To Me.” From the look on her face and the phrasing, her intent is malicious. Carrie glances round then goes back to her lunch.

MEAN GIRL: [singing] Young teacher, the subject of schoolgirl fantasy.
She wants him so badly, knows what she wants to be.

Her two friends join in.

MEAN GIRLS: Temptation, frustration, so bad it makes him cry.
Her bus stop, she's waiting, his car is warm and dry.
Don’t stand so, don’t stand so, don’t stand so close to me.

Carrie’s had enough and walks off with her lunch, observed by Veronica and Wallace.

WALLACE: That's rough, man.

VERONICA: Don't look to me for sympathy. Carrie has had a long and storied reign as the gossip queen of Neptune High.

WALLACE: You get a crown with that?

VERONICA: Do something for me?

WALLACE: Let me guess. Borrow her permanent file?

VERONICA: I remember when you were new and eager to please. Good times.

They smile. Veronica looks over her shoulder and spots someone.

VERONICA: Hey!

She scrambles off the bench and approaches Duncan, who is walking past.

VERONICA: Can I ask you kind of a weird favour?

DUNCAN: Depends how weird.

VERONICA: Our family physician just retired to Death Valley, literally. I know it sounds like a metaphor, but it's not.

Duncan laughs.

VERONICA: Anyway, we need a new general practitioner. Can I get the name of yours?

DUNCAN: Sure. Dr. Al Levine. He's in the book.

VERONICA: Thanks.

DUNCAN: Yeah, no problem. He's…kind of expensive, though.

VERONICA: We've got insurance.

Duncan seems a little sceptical that this will be adequate but is too polite to argue. He leaves.

VERONICA VOICEOVER: Al Levine. Got it. It's time to find out what this mystery illness is you're suffering from.

EXT – NHS – DAY.

Veronica exits the school and is met by Wallace. He has a file. He looks around conspiratorially.

WALLACE: Carrie's file.

He holds it out to her but as her fingers close on it, he snatches it back.

WALLACE: If you are caught with this, I will disavow any knowledge of you or your mission. You'll be on your own.

VERONICA: Don't worry. I've got a cyanide capsule in a false tooth. If I'm caught, I'll do the honourable thing.

He hands her the file.

WALLACE: It's been a privilege knowing you, Mars.

He heads off as Veronica looks around then starts perusing the file.

VERONICA VOICEOVER: Well, well, well, Carrie.

Deep into the file, she doesn’t see Logan approach and stop next to her.

VERONICA VOICEOVER: I'm not sure this is-

LOGAN: It's a good read?

Veronica is startled and quickly closes the file.

LOGAN: Any news?

VERONICA: I put notices on your mom's credit cards and on her ATM card.

LOGAN: Meaning what?

VERONICA: Meaning a friend of my father's who works at your family bank will text message me if any of the cards are used. And you know that eyewitness that's been clogging up the airwaves?

LOGAN: Yeah. Opportunistic hag.

VERONICA: That's the one. Well, she's giving a statement at the sheriff's department tomorrow. I'll drop by; see if she's up for a chat.

LOGAN: Well, I'll go with you.

VERONICA: Actually, despite popular opinion, you really can't beat the truth out of someone.

Veronica walks away, returning to her scan of Carrie’s file and leaving Logan standing, but only for a moment. He chases after her.

LOGAN: Listen, I'm going.

VERONICA: You're not.

LOGAN: ‘Kay, what are you going to stop me with?

VERONICA: Force of will, strength of character, tenacity, [gesturing] karate chop...

Logan puts his hand on her arm to stop her walking and turns her to face him.

LOGAN: [with finger pointed] I will know if she's lying, okay. You won't.

VERONICA: [resigned] Fine. I've got a plan.

LOGAN: [harsh laugh] Yeah, I'm sure you do.

Logan stands, arms akimbo as Veronica turns her attention elsewhere.

VERONICA: Hey, Carrie, wait up!

Veronica walks on and reaches Carrie.

CARRIE: [sarcastic] Why? Did you want the chance to tell me how much you admired me for my brave stand?

VERONICA: I want to give you a chance to recant before I prove you're lying.

CARRIE: Why do you even care?

VERONICA: There aren't many great teachers. Mr Rooks is one of them.

CARRIE: Yeah, if you can get past the part where he seduces his students.

VERONICA: Hey, Carrie? This is me, Veronica. I know you.

CARRIE: You're so naive.

VERONICA: Yeah, that's me, naive.

Carrie opens the door of her car to leave.

VERONICA: Mr Rooks called your parents in for a parent-teacher conference last September. Hardly seems like something an illicit boyfriend would do.

CARRIE: Believe what you want. Never cared what you thought of me before, no reason to start now.

Carrie gets into her car. Veronica sighs softly.

INT – MARS INVESTIGATIONS (MI) – DAY.

Veronica enters. Keith comes out of the kitchenette.

KEITH: Hey, sweetie.

VERONICA: Hey.

KEITH: Hey, you know a teacher named Chuck Rooks? Teaches history?

VERONICA: Yeah, I'm in his class.

KEITH: Oh, good, good. I want you to find out whatever you can about him.

VERONICA: Why?

KEITH: Well, the parents of a girl named Carrie Bishop just hired us to investigate him. Apparently Carrie filed a sexual harassment claim against him this afternoon. They want him fired.

Veronica is horrified and shakes her head.

KEITH: What's wrong?

Veronica is momentarily dumbstruck. Cut to a little later. Veronica is at her desk, emptying her bag, loudly. Keith is standing in front of her desk, observing.

KEITH: Calm down. What are you so upset about?

VERONICA: [passionately] Mr Rooks is an amazing teacher, one of the few good teachers at Neptune High. And you're just going to join the witch hunt to get him fired?

KEITH: I'm just running a background check. I'm not organising a stoning in the town square.

VERONICA: For the record, I can't help you. I've already volunteered to work with him. You know how I dread going to that school every day? His class is one of the few things that I look forward to.

KEITH: Well, I'm sorry. This is my business, honey. It's what I do. Besides, the girl deserves to be heard.

VERONICA: No, actually, she doesn't. She's a liar and a gossip and a manipulator.

KEITH: What makes you think that?

VERONICA: I just do.

KEITH: Well, I can't drop a case based on a feeling you have, I'm sorry.

Keith goes into his office. Veronica sulks.

VERONICA: Fine. You can answer your own phone.

Keith stares at her from his office as she gets out her laptop and thinks.

SUSAN: [offscreen] I'm surprised they lasted as long as they did.

FLASHBACK: INT – NHS, GIRLS BATHROOM – DAY.

Carrie and her friend, Susan Knight, are at the mirrors. Unbeknownst to them, Veronica is in one of the stalls and can hear them.

CARRIE: Oh, I know.

SUSAN: I mean, of all of the girls in the school Duncan could have gone out with, Veronica Mars? [snorts] I mean, how insane is that?

CARRIE: He's out of his mind, that's for sure.

SUSAN: She really got her claws into him. You know, I actually sort of feel sorry for the guy. I mean, you know all she's after is his money.

CARRIE: No, I mean, he's literally crazy. Like loony-bin crazy.

SUSAN: What are you talking about?

CARRIE: Well, you know how Brian's brother is a resident at the hospital? And Brian told Ashley that last week, Duncan was brought in, kicking and screaming, foaming at the mouth, calling out Veronica's name. It took like three orderlies to get him in a straitjacket.

In her stall, Veronica is distressed at this.

SUSAN: Come on.

CARRIE: That's what I heard.

Veronica flushes the toilet and storms out. Carrie and Susan turn and see her. Veronica goes to the sink.

VERONICA: Carrie Bishop and Susan Knight. Go figure.

Carrie can’t be seen but Susan looks uncomfortable.

END FLASHBACK.

INT – MI – CONTINUING.

Veronica wears a bitter expression.

INT – SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT – DAY.

Veronica and Logan sit, waiting, impatiently in Logan’s case.

VERONICA: We should do this more often.

Logan ignores her and chews his gum. Steps are heard as a woman exits one of the offices.

WOMAN: Thank you, detective.

VERONICA: That's her.

The woman heads towards where they are sitting. Logan takes out his gum and sticks it under the chair in preparation of confronting her. Veronica puts out her arm to stop him.

VERONICA: Down, boy. Relax, I've got it covered.

Veronica speaks softly into her sleeve.

VERONICA: White trash walking.

She hands an earpiece to Logan as the woman passes them.

VERONICA: I know, gadgets and all.

Logan glances at the woman and beyond where Cliff can be seen waiting for the woman. Logan puts the earpiece in his ear and can hear Cliff.

CLIFF: Oh, uh, Ms Stanton. Cliff McCormack from "Weekly World News." My boss is very interested in your story.

MS STANTON: Well, are we talking an exclusive, or what 'cause I'm getting lots of offers.

CLIFF: Oh, definitely an exclusive.

WOMAN: Well, what's the offer?

CLIFF: Well, it depends on what you've got. Did she look intoxicated, drugged up…bruised?

WOMAN: If you'd like, sure.

Logan explodes off the chair and heads for the woman, shouting. Veronica races after him.

LOGAN: So, what?! You couldn't get on "Springer" this week, so you make lies up about my mom?

VERONICA: Logan...

Veronica puts herself between Logan and the woman.

LOGAN: You know, I am sure the trailer payments must be high. And what with the high price of spam these days…

The woman stalks off. Logan starts to follow but Veronica holds his arms. He throws off Veronica’s restraining hands to raise his own in his “I’m done” gesture and walks in the other direction. Veronica turns to Cliff.

VERONICA: Okay, enough. Thanks, Cliff. You're the best.

Cliff returns a microphone and earpiece to her.

CLIFF: Yeah, if by best you mean willing. You owe me one, kid.

Cliff leaves and Veronica heads back to Logan who is leaning against the wall. As she reaches him, she sees Leo approaching, on route to the main area.

VERONICA: Hey.

LEO: Hi.

VERONICA: [to Logan] I have to take care of something. I'll be like two seconds. Stay calm. Finding out what that woman is about is good news.

Logan is still keyed up but nods. Veronica heads in Leo’s direction.

VERONICA: Deputy.

LEO: What do you want, Veronica?

VERONICA: A chance to explain.

LEO: What's to explain? You used me. I get it.

VERONICA: Lilly Kane was my best friend.

LEO: Listen, I know all about your dad and the murder investigation-

VERONICA: No, you don't. You know the story that everyone else knows.

LEO: A guy confessed. He said he did it.

Veronica pulls Leo closer, away from the other deputies.

VERONICA: [urgently] Did you know that the head of security at Kane Software was the one that made the tip call that got Abel Koontz arrested? Did you know that your own crime scene photos make it impossible for Abel to have left the Kane house with a pair of Lilly's shoes that they found on his houseboat? Did you know there's a traffic ticket that proves that Lilly's time of death is three hours off?

LEO: How do you know all this?

VERONICA: I know all of this because I have done everything I could to get to the truth...including using you and I'm really sorry about that. But I-I used you, then fell for you, not the other way around.

Leo grins.

LEO: You fell for me?

Veronica smiles uncertainly back.

EXT – ROOKS RESIDENCE – DAY.

Veronica approaches a wooden door that is slightly ajar.

VERONICA: Hello?

She knocks. Rooks opens the door into a small patio area with a compact swimming pool. There is a little girl in the background.

MR ROOKS: Hey, Veronica. Uh, come on in. Meet my daughter, Olivia.

Veronica enters and approaches the little girl.

VERONICA: Hi, Olivia. I'm one of your dad's students, Veronica.

The child is intent on the radio controlled boat she is manoeuvring around the pool and ignores Veronica.

VERONICA: She must be going through a shy phase.

MR ROOKS: No, not really. She's usually pretty gregarious. She must really dislike you.

VERONICA: There's a club she can join.

MR ROOKS: Sweetie, why don't you go finish your colouring. I’ll-I'll come in and join you, okay? There you go.

Rooks installs her at a desk on the porch, behind a child gate.

VERONICA: She's adorable.

MR ROOKS: Well, if you get past her megalomania and reactionary politics. I get her on the weekends. My ex-wife has her during the week.

VERONICA: I'm sorry to intrude on your weekend.

MR ROOKS: Oh, no problem. What's on your mind?

VERONICA: A few months ago, you called a parent-teacher conference with Carrie's parents?

MR ROOKS: How would you know that?

VERONICA: I can't reveal my sources.

MR ROOKS: Uh. Veronica, I appreciate your offer of help. It's very generous. But I really think this is an adult matter.

VERONICA: Right now, Carrie's parents have a private investigator running a background check on you. There's going to be a hearing. If the school board believes Carrie's allegations, you'll never teach again.

MR ROOKS: Her parents came to see me about her grades. I gave her a C on her midterm paper. She thought it was unfair that the black mark on her transcript would keep her out of Cornell.

VERONICA: Do you suppose that's why she's after you? Spoiling her Ivy League dreams?

MR ROOKS: Honestly, I couldn't tell you.

VERONICA: Do you have anyone representing you at the school board hearing?

MR ROOKS: Well, faculty union rep.

VERONICA: Who's that?

MR ROOKS: You're looking at him.

Both smile ruefully.

INT – MI – DAY.

Veronica is at her desk. Keith enters.

KEITH: Any messages?

Veronica glares at him and says nothing. Keith takes off his jacket and heads over to her desk.

KEITH: Veronica. I know you admire this guy and I encourage you to stand up for your convictions when you think you're right. But Rooks is a bad egg and I don't want you getting hurt when the whole story comes out.

VERONICA: I'm sorry. I believe him.

KEITH: Carrie kept a very detailed diary of her affair with him. It's full of times and dates. She recorded the very date of a weekend she spent in a hotel with him when her parents were out of town. She writes about him taking her to a fancy restaurant in San Diego after she won the District Extemporaneous Speaking Competition.

VERONICA: So? That doesn't prove anything. I could write down that I met Kid Rock every weekend at the Hedonism Lodge for sensual massage and smoothies, but that doesn't make it true.

KEITH: I did a cross check of Rooks' credit card history.

Keith gets a file out of his briefcase.

KEITH: The charges match Carrie's diary.

VERONICA: She could have followed him.

KEITH: Sweetie, it's very specific. And I don't want you seeing Kid Rock.

Veronica sighs, concerned. Cut to later. Veronica is standing at the front of her desk, her back to the main door to the office. She picks up the phone.

DOCTOR’S RECEPTIONIST: Dr. Levine's office.

VERONICA: Hi, this is Veronica Mars.

Veronica doesn’t see or hear Logan enter the office behind her, holding a tabloid.

VERONICA: I was wondering if I could get in to see the doctor sometime this week. End of the day would be best. I have band practice after school.

DOCTOR’S RECEPTIONIST: How's five o’clock?

VERONICA: Five is great. Thanks.

DOCTOR’S RECEPTIONIST: All right.

LOGAN: I'm no doctor…

Veronica whirls round.

LOGAN: …but I'm, uh, pretty sure Penicillin will clear that problem right up.

VERONICA: Can't say I was expecting you.

LOGAN: Yeah, yeah, I usually avoid buildings with stained glass.

VERONICA: [in her girlie voice] That's why you haven't come to visit.

Veronica has moved round to sit at her desk and Logan slaps the tabloid down in front of her.

LOGAN: [excited] There's a woman who saw my mom get out of her car and get in a van with a [air quotes] mysterious stranger.

VERONICA: There's also a jungle tribe that worships Donald Trump's hair. It's a tabloid.

Logan smiles.

LOGAN: What, so the girl with the pig arm can't really bowl?

VERONICA: [genuinely] I just don't want you to get your hopes up.

LOGAN: [harshly] I'm not paying you to worry about my hopes. I'm paying you to follow leads.

VERONICA: I wasn't aware you were paying me.

LOGAN: This isn't a favour, it's a job, you know. I mean, we're not…

He holds his hands up.

LOGAN: …exchanging friendship bracelets.

VERONICA: I'll stop braiding.

LOGAN: The woman said my mom was laughing and having fun. And so do whatever it is you do and track her down.

Veronica is reading the story.

VERONICA: Sondra Bolan of Sunset Springs. How am I going to find her?

Veronica picks up the phone.

VERONICA: [into the phone] In Sunset Springs. Sondra Bolan.

As she waits, she whispers to Logan.

VERONICA: I'll put it on your bill.

Veronica returns her attention to the phone.

VERONICA: Hi, Sondra, this is Veronica of "The National Instigator." I had a few follow-up questions on your Lynn Echolls story. [pauses] Actually, in person is a lot better. [pauses again] No, Tuesday night's no good, newspaper work night.

Logan, who has been leaning on a filing cabinet in front of her, steps forward.

LOGAN: What are you doing?

Veronica looks at him but continues speaking to Sondra on the phone.

VERONICA: Any chance you're available right now?

She smiles at Logan.

INT – COFFEE BAR – DAY.

Veronica and Sondra are sitting opposite each other on two small couches.

VERONICA: So, I'm not sure how much you were paid for the last interview, but-

SONDRA: Oh, I wasn't paid. I thought people should know the truth with that woman lying on every talk show.

As the camera pans round, Logan can be seen sitting on a stool at a raised table behind Sondra.

VERONICA: So is there anything else you remember? The model of the van? Maybe a piece of the licence plate?

SONDRA: Honestly, I was just so excited to see Lynn. I thought they were filming a movie or something.

VERONICA: Have you ever seen Lynn Echolls before?

SONDRA: Once. The premiere of "Delta Blue Bombers." She was on the red carpet with Aaron. I must have seen that movie a hundred times.

VERONICA: A hundred times?

SONDRA: I can check if you want.

Sondra pulls out a scrapbook. It is full of pictures of Lynn and ticket stubs. She starts to count them. Veronica decides to move on.

VERONICA: So the van. In the interview, you said the van was blue?

SONDRA: It was the van from "The Pursuit of Happiness." The exact van.

VERONICA: You mean the exact model?

SONDRA: No, the actual van from the movie. Lynn and Aaron met on the set of "The Pursuit of Happiness," you know. They were so young then.

Logan looks at the woman and smiles humourlessly, understanding that she’s a deluded fan and no witness to anything.

SONDRA: I don't know why anyone could ever think she'd kill herself.

Logan gets up and leaves.

SONDRA: She is the luckiest woman in the world.

VERONICA: Excuse me.

Veronica leaves Sondra and follows Logan around a glass block partition towards the exit. Music: Tulips by Bloc Party.

LYRICS: When you said tulips
I knew that you’re mine
When I caught you there
Crying in the night
Wearing my jacket
Wearing that smile
I knew that I’d found you.

Logan has paused, leaning on the partition near the exit, his back to Veronica.

VERONICA: I would have done the same thing.

He turns his head to look at her.

LOGAN: Done what?

VERONICA: If it was my mother, I would have let myself believe that story.

Logan pushes himself off the glass blocks and blunders up the exit stairs, bumping into a girl standing on the stairs on one side and Weevil, coming down the stairs, on the other.

WEEVIL: Hey! Manners, Opie! [to Veronica] What, did he lose a puka shell?

VERONICA: No. Just the last ounce of hope that his mother was still alive.

Weevil looks a little contrite.

INT – MARS RESIDENCE – NIGHT.

Carrots are being chopped. Keith is making dinner. Veronica enters the apartment.

VERONICA: Is that lasagne I smell?

KEITH: Keith Mars' secret recipe.

VERONICA: You double the cheese. Your secret is out. You're making salad? I know pity cooking when I see it. There must be more bad news.

KEITH: Maybe we should wait 'til after dinner, huh?

VERONICA: Spill it. I promise I won't let it ruin my appetite.

KEITH: Rooks was fired from his last job at a private school. His file is sealed, but the complaint came from the parents of two girls.

Veronica takes this in but is still determined.

VERONICA: I want to see Carrie's journal.

KEITH: You know I can't let you.

VERONICA: There better be dessert.

INT – MI – NIGHT.

Veronica paces in Keith’s office.

VERONICA VOICEOVER: If I'm going to save Mr Rooks' job, I have to get my hands on this supposed diary.

She tries to unlock the safe.

VERONICA VOICEOVER: Unfortunately Dad's changed the combination. It's the rare individual who chooses meaningless numbers as a combination. He taught me that.

Veronica searches the bulletin board over Keith’s desk.

VERONICA VOICEOVER: Nine times out of ten, an individual will select numbers that mean something - birthdays, anniversaries, addresses. Of course, dad is smarter than that.

She turns her attention to the things on his desk.

VERONICA VOICEOVER: You wouldn't believe the number of people who keep the combination written down on a post-it or tacked to a bulletin board or scribbled on a birthday page of their page-a-day calendar. Somehow, I doubt Dad's that careless.

On the page-a-day calendar, she spots the entry for 10 February upon which is written: 12 1663. She smiles and heads for the safe.

VERONICA VOICEOVER: Then again, he'll be glad to know how much I've soaked up listening to him.

It opens.

VERONICA VOICEOVER: And what do we have here?

She pulls out a steel box. She brings it to his desk and opens it. It explodes, covering her skin and her clothes with blue dye.

VERONICA VOICEOVER: I suspect there's also a lesson to be learned here.

INT – MARS RESIDENCE – NIGHT.

Veronica is scrubbing herself frantically at the kitchen sink. Her father comes up behind her.

KEITH: Hey, honey. What have you been up to?

VERONICA: [barely restrained] Tell me where to put your father-of-the-year trophy, 'cause there's some place I'd like to put it.

KEITH: Wow. Good thing I didn't go with a bear trap.

VERONICA: This is not funny. I need to see that diary. She's lying. I know it. I can feel it with every fibre of my being.

KEITH: Honey, you don't have to get all blue in the face.

VERONICA: You're patronising me?

KEITH: [enjoying himself] To be fair, I am your patron.

VERONICA: The Bishops are going to use your credit card research and that diary to prove the two of them were together. Just give me the dates and times, I don't have to read the diary. Do you want to be responsible for taking a good man down? Destroying his reputation? Can you possibly relate?

Keith’s gesture suggests that this is a low blow but one he acknowledges.

KEITH: Dates and times. That's it.

Veronica holds up her hands (the gesture is obviously infectious) with an innocent face.

INT – NHS, OUTSIDE THE ADMINISTRATION OFFICE – DAY.

Veronica leaves the school administration office. She pauses at the glass display cabinet, which is showcasing achievements, medals and trophies, having spotted Carrie in one of the photographs.

WEEVIL: [offscreen] If you're looking for my trophy, it's back by auto shop.

The camera pans round to show Weevil, watching her.

VERONICA: A lube job? Or can you medal in stealing hubcaps?

WEEVIL: Is this 1970? Rims, baby.

VERONICA: So you got a trophy for a rim job?

WEEVIL: [chuckles] Forget it. Look, I got some information for you.

VERONICA: [girlie voice] Finally, a Deep Throat to call my own.

WEEVIL: I'm not going to touch that one. Uh, I hear this freshman kid's been shooting his mouth off that he's got proof that Lynn Echolls jumped and he's gonna make millions.

VERONICA: Who's the kid?

WEEVIL: Do you want me to find out?

VERONICA: Do you even have to ask?

INT – NHS, CLASSROOM – DAY.

Students are filing out at the end of another history lesson. Veronica has lingered behind again. She approaches Rooks.

VERONICA: Can I ask you something?

MR ROOKS: Shoot.

VERONICA: Why were you fired from your last job?

MR ROOKS: How on earth do you know-

VERONICA: I just do.

MR ROOKS: Wow. Maybe I should give more credence to the teacher's lounge gossip. Colleagues said you were...

Veronica looks at him expectantly.

MR ROOKS: …unique. [off her still expectant look] Gifted. [trying again] Unsettling?

VERONICA: I was hoping for delightful, but what can you do?

They laugh.

VERONICA: So...

MR ROOKS: My firing, yeah, um. It was an all girls’ school on the conservative side. I had the temerity to suggest U.S. Imperialism wasn't necessarily a good thing. They thought I was trying to turn their daughters into little beret-wearing, clove-smoking Bolsheviks.

VERONICA: Were you?

MR ROOKS: Nyet.

VERONICA: That's it?

MR ROOKS: Well, that, and I was driving an '89 Harley. Didn't really endear me to the administration.

VERONICA: Thanks, Mr Rooks.

MR ROOKS: Do svidaniya, Veronica.

INT – NHS, HALLWAY – DAY.

Veronica corners Carrie at her locker.

VERONICA: I'm giving you another chance. Drop the complaint against Mr Rooks.

CARRIE: Yeah. I remember when I was in love with him too.

VERONICA: Did you ever consider that I just really dislike you?

CARRIE: [sarcastic] Wow! Does that mean you won't be signing my yearbook?

Carrie walks off but Veronica isn’t finished and follows her.

VERONICA: You're still in Mr Rooks' class. You must not be too shook up.

CARRIE: I need his class to graduate.

They pause in the middle of the hallway.

CARRIE: And he'll be the one leaving...soon.

VERONICA: All this because he gave you a C on your paper? You'd destroy him?

CARRIE: Destroy him? From where I stand, he's become more popular than ever. I'm the bitch that everyone hates. Are you interested in details, Veronica? Can I help enrich your fantasy life? He says “baby” a lot when he touches you. His sheets are black, silk. His mood music is side two of the Rolling Stones' "Tattoo You.” He'll tear up as he tells you the story of his ex-wife leaving him. You'll turn to jelly.

VERONICA: Yeah, I have that same "Sweet Valley High" book. You said you spent the night in a hotel with Mr Rooks on April 23rd but there's a problem with that story, isn't there?

CARRIE: Why don't you tell me? It's obvious you're dying to.

The school bell rings.

VERONICA: All right. The problem with that story is that you were at an overnight track meet in Sacramento that weekend. You were part of the winning 1,600 metre relay. People say you're fast.

Veronica stalks off and leaves Carrie, looking uncomfortable.

INT – LEVINE’S OFFICE – DAY.

Veronica, in a hospital-like gown and her jeans, sits on an examination table, clutching the gown around her. Dr Levine enters.

DR LEVINE: Sorry to keep you waiting. I'm always busy at the end of the day. Ah, so those sniffles, they were just light allergies, not uncommon.

VERONICA: So I can put my shirt back on?

DR LEVINE: Uh, sure, yes, of course.

Levine leaves. Cut to a fully dressed Veronica who makes her way to the reception area and slips into the bathroom without the receptionist seeing her.

VERONICA VOICEOVER: One problem with doctors, besides their fetish for making you wait half-naked in cold rooms, is they won't just let you ransack their files, even if you ask real nice. So someone like me has to resort to methods the insurance companies would probably not support.

Out in reception, Dr Levine leaves.

DR LEVINE: Goodnight, Nancy.

NANCY: Goodnight.

The receptionist turns off the lamp and picks up the keys. She hears something from the bathroom and goes to investigate. The door is locked. She knocks and then opens it with a key. Finding nothing, she leaves. Veronica opens the cupboard under the sink from the inside.

VERONICA VOICEOVER: Okay, yes, I am petite and it does come in handy every now and then.

Cut to Veronica going through Dr Levine’s files. She finds Duncan’s file. Cut to her photocopying the file and putting the copies in her bag. As she puts Duncan’s file back, she spots another file of interest – Abel Koontz’s file. She takes it out.

VERONICA VOICEOVER: I'm generally pretty cool with coincidence…

Someone enters and Veronica races away, closing the file drawer.

VERONICA VOICEOVER: …but when Abel Koontz turns out to share a doctor with the Kanes, that's too much for me to ignore, even if it means getting caught.

The cleaner who arrived makes her way down a corridor and opens a door. She is startled.

CLEANER: Wha-?

Veronica is sitting back on the examination table, clothed in the gown in the place of her shirt again.

VERONICA: Is the doctor here? 'Cause I've been sitting for like an hour.

INT – SCHOOL BOARD – DAY.

Veronica enters the room, taking a photo. Rooks stands before the board.

MR ROOKS: This experience has ruined me. I mean the story’s in the newspaper. My peers in the faculty lounge stop talking when I enter.

The chairman of the proceedings, Jessica Fuller, sits in the middle of a tall curved desk up on a dais, other members of the board on either side of her including Edward Reed, Jean Horton and Pat Bryant.

JESSICA: Mr Rooks, do you have any guess why Miss Bishop would file this grievance?

In front of the board, tables are set in a courtroom fashion, with Carrie and her mother on one side and Rooks on the other.

MR ROOKS: Carrie is a solid B student in my class. She made it very clear she needed an A.

Rooks looks over at Carrie who shakes her head.

MR ROOKS: But the-the work just didn't merit it.

Cut to Carrie telling her story.

CARRIE: My dad left my mom last year and…I was pretty lost. Mr Rooks started giving me rides home from our mock UN meetings and we'd just talk. He said that we had a lot in common, that we'd both been abandoned by people we thought loved us because of his wife. At first we just kissed, but...it went beyond that. When I told him I thought I might be pregnant, he just blew me off. When I saw him flirting with other girls, I just decided, I guess this is what he does. And I couldn't let him get away with it again.

JESSICA: These are very serious charges, Carrie. Is there any proof you can offer beyond your testimony?

Carrie looks back at Veronica and seems to abandon the diary. However, she pulls out a cell phone.

CARRIE: He sent me text messages all the time. April 9th: Let's meet for tutoring. Clothing optional. April 14th: I miss your scent. Call me. April 29th: Come to school without your underwear. You'll be rewarded.

Jessica gestures for Carrie to bring the phone to her. She does.

JESSICA: They're addressed to SK.

CARRIE: He used to call me Sweet Knees. He always wanted me to wear knee socks.

JESSICA: I'm not sure we have proof that Mr Rooks actually sent you these messages.

CARRIE: Hit the call-back button there.

She does and Rooks’ phone rings. Veronica gets up and quietly approaches Clemmons who is sitting amongst the few spectators.

VERONICA: Mr Clemmons, can I borrow your cell for a minute? My car broke down in the parking lot.

He is suspicious, and reluctant, but hands over the phone. Just outside the room, Veronica punches the keypad. Cut back to the proceedings.

JESSICA: Mr Clemmons, what can you tell us about your interaction with Mr Rooks that might be relevant?

CLEMMONS: Well, he's a very popular teacher.

Veronica re-enters the room and creeps up to Rooks. She whispers in his ear.

CLEMMONS: The student body has voted him best teacher three of the four years he's been with us.

JESSICA: Thank you, Mr Clemmons.

As Clemmons returns to his seat, Veronica returns his phone to him.

MR ROOKS: Um, Mrs Fuller, if I may? Could I ask you to get out your own cell phone and, uh, check the messages?

Jessica looks at her fellow board members.

PAT BRYANT: It's all right with me.

She gets out her phone. Rooks looks back at Veronica who gives him an encouraging nod.

MR ROOKS: Now, just check and see if you have messages.

JESSICA: I have three new messages.

MR ROOKS: Can you read ‘em out loud?

JESSICA: The first one says: True pirates share their booty. The second: I'll be your little spoon. And finally: Vice principals make the best lovers.

Veronica nods her satisfaction as Clemmons sinks in his seat.

MR ROOKS: Mind hitting redial?

Clemmons phone rings. He pulls it out of his jacket pocket and switches it off.

MR ROOKS: I think we have to conclude that either the two of you are having an affair...or that it's extremely easy to create false text messages on someone's cell phone.

The board gazes at him. Veronica is well pleased. Cut to later as the board resumes their seats.

JESSICA: In a situation like we have here today, the burden of proof is on the accuser. We find no conclusive evidence to substantiate the claim that these alleged encounters ever happened. Mr Rooks will continue on as a teacher at this school.

Carrie is gutted but seems philosophical. Rooks looks back at a contented Veronica.

INT – ROOKS RESIDENCE – DAY.

Rooks, chewing, opens his front door. It’s Veronica.

MR ROOKS: You didn't have to come all the way over here.

VERONICA: I know, but I felt really stupid getting out of there with your phone. Sorry.

She hands him a cell phone. He takes it.

MR ROOKS: Well, I appreciate you hooking me up with password protection.

VERONICA: That's what I do.

MR ROOKS: Hey, you want some pizza? It just got delivered. They had a two-for-one deal. I'm swimming in it.

VERONICA: Um...one slice. I have this newspaper work night thing.

She enters and looks around.

VERONICA: Nice. You must have a gay friend.

MR ROOKS: No, I literally duplicated a page from the "Z Gallery" catalogue. Something to drink?

VERONICA: Ah, whatever you're having. Diet anything is good. Can I use your bathroom?

MR ROOKS: Sure, down the hall.

Veronica heads up a small corridor, slowing to look at pictures of Olivia on the walls. Music starts playing as she passes his open bedroom door. The sheets on the bed are black. Music: Worried About You by the Rolling Stones.

LYRICS: Sometime I wonder why
You do these things to me
Sometime I worry girl, ooh

The track is off the “Tattoo You” album.

VERONICA VOICEOVER: Is that Mick Jagger?

Veronica turns on her heel and heads back to Rooks.

VERONICA: You know, I just looked at the time. I have to get back to the journalism room. Rain check on the pizza?

MR ROOKS: Absolutely.

VERONICA: See you tomorrow.

Veronica leaves. End music: Worried About You by the Rolling Stones.

INT – NHS, JOURNALISM CLASSROOM – DAY.

Veronica is at one of the computers.

VERONICA VOICEOVER: Best way to stop wondering if your favourite teacher was trying to lure you between his black silk sheets? Research the mystery condition that's causing your ex-boyfriend and possible half brother to take Oxcarbazepine.

She uses PlanetZowie Search Engine and types in the drug. A Google-like page comes up with a number of entries, showing it as an anticonvulsant for seizures and epilepsy.

VERONICA VOICEOVER: Hmm, it's a drug used to treat type IV epilepsy. Symptoms include hysterical, violent, emotional fits that can't be controlled and are often are accompanied by complete blackouts and loss of memory.

Unnoticed by Veronica, Duncan approaches.

DUNCAN: Whatcha doing?

Veronica hurriedly clicks a couple of times on the mouse.

VERONICA: Googling myself. Like I'm the first.

He crouches down next to her.

DUNCAN: Find out anything interesting?

VERONICA: There's a Veronica Mars in Vermont who sells pinecone porcupines.

Duncan laughs. He glances at the papers at the right side of her, the first of which is a large photo of Carrie. He picks it up, revealing underneath the photocopy of his medical file. Veronica grabs another picture of Carrie from the stack on her left and covers the copy of the medical file with this while Duncan looks at the photo.

VERONICA: Do you know where we keep last year's newspapers?

DUNCAN: In the supply cabinet. Why?

VERONICA: I want to see who won last year's District Extemporaneous Speaking Competition.

DUNCAN: Okay...why?

VERONICA: I want to know if the winner had sweet knees.

Duncan laughs.

DUNCAN: I give up.

Duncan stands and wanders away.

INT – NHS, HALLWAY – DAY.

Veronica is on her cell.

OPERATOR: What city?

VERONICA: Neptune?

OPERATOR: Yes?

VERONICA: I need a listing for the Knight family.

OPERATOR: Ninth street?

VERONICA: Is there more than one?

OPERATOR: No, there’s not.

VERONICA: Then that would be it.

OPERATOR: Please hold for your number.

EXT – RESIDENCE – NIGHT.

Veronica approaches a door. She rings the bell. Susan Knight answers.

SUSAN: Veronica Mars?

VERONICA: Carrie's story is true, isn't it? It just didn't happen to her. She copied your diary, and it was your cell phone she showed in court. You got together with Rooks the night you won the Extemporaneous Speaking Competition? SK was you, Susan Knight.

Susan steps out from behind the screen door. She is heavily pregnant.

SUSAN: My parents disowned me. I wouldn't tell them who the father is because I knew if I did, they would press charges for statutory rape and I don't-I don’t want that.

VERONICA: There's something I'm not getting. Why would Carrie tell your story?

SUSAN: Because she thought what he did was wrong. Do you know when I told Mr Rooks I was pregnant and he gave me $500 and told me I should go take care of it? It made her crazy there were no consequences for what he did and meanwhile, I had to run out of town in shame? Look, it made me crazy too, but...I can't come forward. I'm just not that brave.

VERONICA: You have no idea. People have put her through hell, and she just took it.

SUSAN: [confused] She said most people were supportive of her.

VERONICA: They weren't…we weren't.

Veronica gets out her phone.

VERONICA: Carrie just went to the mat for you.

She punches in a number.

VERONICA: One phone call and you can make it all worth it. I just happen to have the school board president's cell phone number.

Veronica passes the phone to Susan. Susan takes it and looks at Veronica.

EXT – NHS, LUNCH AREA – DAY.

Carrie is again sitting alone, eating her lunch. Veronica approaches.

VERONICA: I went to see Susan. I'm sorry.

CARRIE: A lot of good that does me now.

Weevil calls out to her, accompanied by a younger student.

WEEVIL: Yo, V. You might want to talk to this freshman. He's the one who's been shooting his mouth off about Logan's mom.

VERONICA: Hope you don't mind telling that story one more time.

INT – NHS, JOURNALISM CLASSROOM – DAY.

Logan enters.

LOGAN: Hey. You paged?

He joins Weevil, the freshman and Veronica at a table where Veronica is sitting in front of a computer.

VERONICA: It seems Hart here has something to show us. Spill.

HART: Me and my friends were filming out by the bay. We were making this war movie, "Storm on the Beach." It's just on high def, but it's pretty cool. It's these two brothers who get sent to war and-

VERONICA: Don't care. Point.

VERONICA: We were editing it together, and we noticed something.

Hart puts a disk into the computer. The sounds of machinegun fire come from the screen.

FIRST VOICE ON VIDEO: Over there! Move in!

SECOND VOICE ON VIDEO: I see him! Oh! Ugh!

Guys dressed in combat gear are playing soldiers. The Coronado Bridge is in the background in the distance where something can be seen moving.

HART: Did you see it?

LOGAN: Yeah, it sucks, and?

VERONICA: Rewind it. Play it frame by frame.

He does.

HART: There! Check out the right side of the bridge.

What is appears to be a body is clearly seen falling from the bridge.

WEEVIL: Holy...

Logan is in shock. Veronica shuts her eyes.

HART: The video's time stamped 4:37 pm. Exactly the time when...

Hart looks over at Logan, nervously.

HART: …she supposedly jumped.

VERONICA: This footage better never make it out into public consumption.

WEEVIL: Don't worry about my boy, Hart.

Weevil puts his hand on Hart’s neck and gets close, in his face.

WEEVIL: He knows if that happens, his last movie will be a snuff film. And he'll star in it, right? Come on.

Weevil throws Logan a sympathetic glance as he and Hart exit. Logan takes a few paces, eyes fixed on the screen.

VERONICA: I'm sorry.

LOGAN: [softly] Yeah, so am I.

Veronica drops her head. Logan turns and walks slowly out of the room, stumbling as he does. Veronica’s cell phone rings. She gets it out of her bag and looks at the display.

VERONICA: Logan!

She jumps out of the chair.

EXT – NHS – CONTINUING.

Logan is walking in a daze.

VERONICA: Logan! Logan.

She catches up with him.

VERONICA: Your mom's missing credit card was just used.

Logan takes a minute to believe it then regains hope.

INT – NHS, CLASSROOM – DAY.

In the history classroom, the students wait for their teacher. Clemmons enters.

CLEMMONS: Quiet down. Quiet down, please. I have an announcement to make. I regret to inform you that Mr Rooks tendered his resignation this morning. I will be taking over the teaching duties in this class until a replacement can be found by the administrat-

Clemmons pauses as Rooks enters the room, walks to his desk and picks up a box of his things. On his way out, he glances at Carrie and Veronica but gets no mercy. He walks on and Carrie and Veronica look at each other, Carrie smiling and barely nodding at Veronica.

INT – MI – DAY.

Veronica packs up her bag at her desk. Keith walks towards her.

VERONICA: Mr Rooks resigned today.

KEITH: Honey? If I were in trouble, I'd want you on my side.

VERONICA: Well, that's where I'd be. I'll be home for dinner. Your messages are on your desk.

Veronica leaves, Keith gazing after her.

INT – PRISON – DAY.

Koontz is sitting behind the glass, waiting for Veronica to sit down and pick up the phone, which she does.

KOONTZ: So. What would you like to know now, Veronica Mars, intrepid girl reporter?

VERONICA: Nothing. This time I just want you to know what I know.

She holds up his medical records.

VERONICA: You're dying, Abel.

Abel loses his smirk.

VERONICA: You knew you were dying when you confessed. You didn't kill Lilly Kane. You're just somebody's patsy.

Veronica hangs up the phone, staring defiantly at him.

VERONICA: Guard!

Veronica goes, leaving Koontz stunned and worried. End. Executive producer: Rob Thomas (who is a god).

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