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Cody (or Chuck, if you're Alex and looking to buy some weed) is Dani's insane sort-of-ex-boyfriend. How crazy is he? Get a load of this.
Cody tries to get with Dani back when their parents are living together. She's not really into him, but because they're in close proximity (i.e., living the same dinky house) it's probably pretty tough to avoid him entirely. When Dani and her mom find out that Cody and his dad are drug dealers, his dad attacks Dani and the two ladies are forced to flee. That's strike one right there.
Once Dani and her mom wind up in Raynesville, Dani finds out that Cody is such a ridiculous stalker that he's actually been in town for months looking for a way to find her:
"I just wanted to get to know Amy so I could find out where you were. I didn't hurt her. I just thought she'd be my clue to finding you." He inched closer and I retreated […]
"Danielle, I can't stand being without you. I need you." He reached over and tried to touch the scar on my lip, but I pulled out of his reach.
"I don't need you. I don't have any feelings for you at all."
He stepped closer again. "That can't be true." His eyes darkened. I stepped back and smacked into the vine covered shell of the bus. I moved to slide past him but he grabbed my arm and held it tightly.
"Let go of me, Cody. You don't want to make an ass out of yourself in front of all these people."
He squeezed my arm tighter and the short fuse of his temper came back to me. "I don't give a crap about any of them. I came here to find you, and it looks like I made the right choice because here you are." (26.69, 71-75)
Um, yeah, total psycho.
So Cody came to town to try to hunt down Dani by talking to her family. Then he set himself up under a fake name—Chuck—and started selling marijuana to the locals. He's a real stand-up guy… not.
Cody functions in the story as a sort of a quasi-villain and a red herring. Once Dani finds out that he's in town, she instantly suspects him of hurting Amy in some way. After all, he's not above attacking Amy in the woods or stabbing Jake in the hand if it means he might be reunited with Dani. Why wouldn't this guy be involved in Amy's death? Oh, because was in jail the night that Amy died, so he couldn't have been involved.
Dani kind of runs into a dead-end once the Cody mystery is explained. He's obviously a bad guy, but he didn't have anything to do with helping Amy over that cliff. How is Dani ever going to crack this case without Cody to blame? To answer this question, check out Mr. Dermott's page elsewhere in this section.