A/N: Okay, so there's something in this chap that I know isn't massively plausible, but please, accept it, because I needed a plot device and that was the only thing I could think of. With that out of the way, enjoy the chapter!
Bishop's day has been massively shitty, and he figures his night can't get any worse.
He's been reading comments about his fall on the 'net while walking back to the hotel that his campaign's using as a base of operations.
Basically, the plebes are saying that if he can't stand up, he shouldn't be president. Which Bishop is kind of understanding about, but mainly just pissed off.
He decides to stop aggravating himself when he reaches the door of the hotel. He taps the right side of his 'net glasses to turn them off, and waits patiently for the door to finish its 'we require identification for you to enter' spiel.
"Conrad, Bishop. Room 2300," he sighs after the door's done.
"Welcome, Mr. Conrad," the door says, and it opens for him, closing milliseconds after he walks in.
Bishop walks across the lobby, all sleek chic, latest in architecture and design. He doesn't remember the name of the hotel, doesn't care, because it doesn't matter. New Angeles is just another rung on the ladder to the presidency, just another step—and he slipped and fell and probably fucked it all up.
He has to wait a minute for the elevator, which kind of amuses him. Creds are transferred through tattoos, there are 'gram jacks in peoples' heads, you can surf the 'net on glasses, and elevators still take a fucking century to come.
The elevator is blissfully empty when Bishop steps in.
"23, please," he says when the elevator asks which floor to go to.
"Yes sir, Mr. Conrad," the elevator says.
The voice recognition is kinda creepy. This is the first hotel Bishop's seen it in. He's not surprised, though. NA is supposed to be at the cutting edge of architecture and technology.
He's got the penthouse, so it's only about three steps to the door from the elevator—he has to have a fucking retinal scan to get the door to the suite open.
He's thinking that he's probably gonna take a nice, long, hot shower, then see what porn he can dig up on the 'gram network tonight, and then he'll go to sleep and—
There's a guy in his room.
He's jacked deep into the 'net, eye glassy and hands shaking a little. He's got red hair, a pretty face, and is dressed a bit inappropriately—
Basically, his whole appearance screams 'whore'.
Bishop walks over and rips the jack out of the back of his head as hard as he can. The whore screams and falls to the ground, putting a hand to his jack spot.
"You too?" the whore asks. "Not my fucking day."
"You're gonna tell me what the fuck you're doing in my room, and then you're going to leave," Bishop says, as calm as he possibly can be, his whole fucking night is ruined now.
"I'm Rocket, 'case you were wondering."
"My House got a call from this room. Said Bishop wanted me. So I came," Rocket says, shrugging.
"How the fuck'd you get in? There's the door, and the retinal scan, and—"
"Said I was a whore. The room registered that you ordered me, so it let me in."
"There's been a mistake, I don't—I'm not—" Bishop says, he's so fucking confused.
"Gay?" Rocket asks, getting on his feet and kind of sidling over to Bishop, putting a finger under his chin. "It's shiny." He winks. "You don't have to pretend. I've dealt with politicians before."
Bishop is wracking his brain, why the hell would he have a prostitute, why—and then it hits him. It's probably a joke from someone on his team.
Someone is definitely getting fired tomorrow.
Bishop slaps Rocket's hand away. "Get out," he says, and then naturally, naturally, the power goes out.
Bishop could cry.
See, the doors all work on electricity. It's a weird thing, but normal doors were phased out, and now they only run on power.
Bishop waits a few minutes for the backup generator to kick on, but it just…doesn't…happen.
Rocket's starting to stroke his face, which is a bit aggravating.
"Why isn't the generator coming on?" Bishop asks, slapping Rocket's hand away again.
"It was blown up the other day. They haven't replaced it," Rocket says. Bishop's eyes are starting to adjust to the dark, but he doesn't have time to react before Rocket starts licking his face.
"Get the fuck off me!" Bishop shoves Rocket. "I'm not gay. I didn't ask for this."
"Oh, so you wanna play hard to get? Okay. We can play," Rocket says, and there's a bit of a purr to his voice.
"No—no. Just stay away from me, okay?"
"I saw your fall on the 'net. Is your head okay? D'you need a massage or something?"
"How many times—don't fucking touch me," Bishop says, and to add a bit of sting, includes a "Whore."
"I've been called much worse," Rocket says, and Bishop can make out his figure falling on the bed. "Believe me. Words can't ever hurt me."
"Really? No words ever hurt you?"
"I guess that's a lie. The only words that hurt me these days are 'I love you'. And only one person's ever said that to me."
Bishop carefully sits on the bed next to Rocket. "Looks like we're gonna have to be friends until the power comes back on."
"Can't we just fuck? It'll be so much more fun. I've been beaten all fucking day, and I want some quality sex, yeah?" Rocket sits up.
"No," Bishop says quickly. Gotta hand it to the guy, he's persistent. "So, tell me—how exactly did you become a whore? I'm just interested."
"I didn't have a choice. It's kind of a cliché story, like they have in all them lame romance 'grams. My brother was sick. I had to take care of him. I was thirteen. Had to find some way to make money. Sold myself for a year, provided for him, then he died. I had nothing else to do, so I kept on," Rocket says, no emotion in his voice.
"People ask you often?"
"Yeah. Usually I just say that there ain't no rest for the wicked. People wanna be righteous. Wanna know why a guy would sell 'imself. Some clients wanna save me. Only one person ever actually did something and he's dead."
"I get the feeling that you don't tell most people this shit," Bishop says.
"Nah. What does it matter? Just two guys in the dark," Rocket says, and Bishop can see his outline shrugging. "Which brings me back to the fact that we should just fuck. I swear, shiny baby, I'm good. I'm trained. I know how."
"What the fuck did you just call me?"
"Is that a poor person thing?" Bishop asks, confused.
He didn't mean for it to sound like it did. Rocket kind of flinches, scoots a bit farther away from Bishop. "Yeah. It's a poor person thing."
Bishop doesn't ask anything more, and Rocket doesn't offer.
They sit in silence for a long time, and Bishop thinks that this could very well be the shittiest day of his life. And there doesn't seem to be an end in sight.
A/N: Feedback is appreciated, non-RG reviews will be returned.