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Nothing You Can Say To Make Me Stay

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PARTNERS

DECEMBER 2ND, 2038

When Gavin Reed walked into the precinct, he didn’t expect anything special. He didn’t expect anything different from the normal day to day, if you could even call that normal. Finally acclimating to the android revolution, Gavin was getting used to walking in and seeing that tin can Connor sitting at a desk like an actual human being, his co-workers treating a piece of plastic better than they did him.

It’s not like he could blame them, anyway. Even being an android, Connor was nicer and more approachable than local asshole Gavin Reed. And maybe he was alive. He certainly acted more human, so creepily life-like it was easy to forget he was made of metal except for the spinning ring of color at his temple.

No, Gavin didn’t expect anything but shitty coffee and more shallow gossip with Tina Chen, the one person in the precinct Gavin could stand, and the only one who tried to stand him. Chris Miller, a newly minted detective with up close and personal stories with the android revolution, tried to make nice with Gavin too, but only because Tina let Chris tag along to their conversations like a lost puppy. Gavin couldn’t hate him though. Moving precincts during the aftermath of the Awakening (what people were calling that fateful night when Markus won the android revolution) would be bad enough, but to be moved to the very precinct with its very own Robocop after being held at gunpoint by Robo-jesus could not have been easy.

Ignoring the front desk droid’s cheerful hello like he did every morning, Gavin swiped his card against the reader and walked into the hustle and bustle of the precinct. Once again, Hank and his plastic pet were already hard at work.

Gavin rolled his eyes, but couldn’t help but notice the weird look the lieutenant was giving him. Like he knew something Gavin didn’t. “Probably heard something from his pet, tin can spreading rumors about me again,” Gavin said under his breath while he made a cup of coffee.

“Are you staring down the baby-terminator again? Or just more pissed off than usual? Also, you’re late.”

“Yeah, fuck you too Chen. Tin can has it out for me; you see the look Anderson was giving me?” He took an angry swig of coffee. “And since when did you give a fuck about tardiness, Miss ‘walked in half an hour late to the most important briefing of the year with an iced Starbucks coffee?’”

Tina rolled her eyes. “Ha-fucking-ha. Maybe since Fowler has been looking for you all morning?”

“What? What did I do now?”

Tina had barely shrugged when Captain Fowler stuck his head out of his blacked out glass office, spotted Reed, and gave him a hard stare that could melt a popsicle on the coldest day of the year.

“REED! My office. Now!”

Gavin shrank down, anxiety climbing. “This better be good, or I’m finally punching that fucking android in the face for whatever he said about me.”

Tina chuckled. “For the record, I did try and warn you,” she said over her shoulder as she walked away, leaving Gavin to his fate.

Grumbling, he climbed the stairs to the office. Taking a deep breath, he shouldered open the door before stumbling into a wall of white.It wasn’t a wall, but a person. No, not a person, but an android. Connor to be exact. Except Reed had seen Connor sitting across from Hank two seconds ago.

“What the fuck is this?”

“Good morning to you too, Reed. Now sit down.” Fowler shuffled the paper on his desk, donning his usual annoyed-at-Gavin-look. The only look he ever wore around the detective nowadays. “Detective Gavin Reed, this is RK900, a prototype sent from Cyberlife.” He paused. “Well another prototype sent from Cyberlife.” The captain sighed, already tired, knowing that this was going to be one hell of a day. Gavin didn’t respond, frozen in place with a disgusted look on his face, staring the new android up and down like it had crawled out of a sewer.

The thing stared back, ice blue eyes indifferent yet piercing at the same time. Like it was analyzing Gavin, but wasn’t impressed by the results. Which was exactly what was happening. It seemed to sigh inwardly, dreading speaking to something as low as a mere detective.

“Good morning Detective Reed. Like the captain already said, I am RK900, the prototype designed to take over for my predecessor RK800, whom you know as Connor. Since the android revolution, that will not be necessary, and Cyberlife decided I should join him instead.” RK900 stuck out a hand, stiff and pretentious as ever. Gavin ignored it, turning to Fowler.

“And what the fuck does this have to do with me?” Though he had a guess, one that made his knuckles go white around the coffee cup.

“RK900, Reed. Your new partner.”

If Gavin had been drinking any coffee he would have spewed it all over the desk. Or maybe the tin can’s pristine white jacket.

“WHAT?! You want me to work with that fuckin’ thing? Don’t we have enough fucking robots? I told you they were gonna fucking replace us, and now you’re just standing by letting it happen!” Gavin roared.

Fowler pretended to wipe the spit from his desk, his movements slow, deliberate. After a moment, he looked up, lazy. “He’s your partner, Reed. And quite possibly your babysitter, lord knows you need one.” Fowler steepled his fingers. “Not your replacement. Despite your extensive disciplinary file, you are my best detective, so the bot goes to you.”

The man looked like he was going to say something else, but he rethought until a slow smile spread over his face. “I’m sick of your drama, Reed. Maybe this will absolve it.” He spread his hands. “Enjoy.”