Log Title: I Will Always Annoy You
Summary: (Theme from The Bodyguard)
IC Date: Tue Mar 26 19:56, 2381
OOC Date: Tue Mar 26 19:56, 2019
Related Logs: None



"I'm not here for you. I'm here for the Monarchy."

* * *

It's been an eventful week. Not only did Dante Taylor leap forward in the order of succession for the throne, but he got shot in an alleyway in the Neon District. Thanks to the best healthcare money can buy south of being a meth, he got patched up in no time and after a clone graft to repair the damage the Sunjet did to his shoulder, he was sent on his merry way.

But then he got restless, cocky and overconfident - all hallmarks of him in his youth. Less so going into adulthood, but he still has his moments. He overextended his arm and aggravated the graft. Since he absolutely resolutely does not want scars, he sent himself back to the hospital. It required a bit more delicate surgery, but he's now recovering in the posh hospital room that barely even feels like one.

Every time anything medical happens, The Family gets a ping. Not just because they're paying for it, but because the health of those in the immediate family is of the utmost importance.

* * *

There is no stopping the Mick. He doesn't actually speak to anyone that's in his path. Doctors. Security. Hot Nurses of All Genders. They all get nothing but a glare and a flash of his badge but there's not a moment where Mick's stride is broken.

Except for the moment he's riding the elevator.

As soon as those doors ding and open up on the floor that belongs to his assignment, that forceful stride is once again taken on and he's outside the room before he changes his mind. There's only a moment more taken to hesitate and to plaster on his most sour of soured looks and then he heads inside.

"So you're not dead. Good. Gives me a chance to kill you." This is said with the usual 'hey haven't seen you in years but going to just pick up where we left off with me sounding annoyed and angry all the time' tone.

* * *

Part of the reason that no one stops Mick (aside from that extremely intimidating purposeful stride) is that the security scanners that ping his ONI clear him as not only an allowed visitor, but one who can see as much of his medical records as his own family. He has an all-access pass to the life of Dante Taylor.

And that is something that the man in the hospital bed is very soon going to regret.

He sits up at the sound of the door opening, ready to flash a charming smile at the nurse, but that expression freezes, then drops. "Oh good lord. What are you doing here?"

He doesn't look…great. His hair, which is normally straightened and slicked back, is in its natural curly state. He's wearing blue hospital garments, and his arm is in a sling. He looks a bit pale and groggy. He's only just out of surgery. "Coming at me now? This isn't a fair fight."

* * *

"Cleaning up another mess of yours. Apparently."

Mick doesn't waste much more time as he's already done with this hospital room. Posh or not. He only needs a moment to look around it and spots no less than seven potential holes in the security and protection of the royal family member that's in this room and in a few more steps he's off to locate Royal's clothes and bag and starts with the packing.

"I don't fight fair. Never have." He glances up, probably checking a few things on his ONI and then turns to toss clothes at Royal.

"Get dressed. I'm discharging you from this rat trap."

* * *

"Rat trap? This is the poshest hospital in Bay City outside of the Aerium. I know it isn't London, but there's no need to…" Royal watches as his jacket slides off the end of the bed and drops on the floor. "That's fabric abuse, my friend. You got a silk jacket on a hospital floor." A minute ago he was going on about how posh it was. "I'm telling the Queen."

He sits there, then looks at his arm. "Look, I already mucked up my surgery once. The doctor said if I don't want scars, I've got to take it easy."

* * *

"Don't worry. I'll do all the heavy lifting. Or, as we normal people call it: Work."

Mick is just letting loose with the barrage light banter. Mostly because this is going to be how he's dealing with Royal's back-to-back hospital shenanigans. Another reason to keep him around.

Mick aims another toss of silk clothing in the direction of Royal. This time the pants. This time aimed to make sure they slide to crumple on the floor next to the jacket.

"Listen. Posh or no, this hospital is not safe. None of them are. If things continue to escalate then we're going to need to be ready to deal with any problems that arise on our own terms. On our own turf. Understand?"

Classic 'Bring the fight to us' tactics.

* * *

"I bumbled into a scared woman with a gun, Mick. No one put a hit out on me. This doesn't represent an imminent threat on my life." Then Royal flashes a bit of a toothy smile. "You going to bride-carry me out of here? Ooooh, that'll be a real good one for the tabloids." And he doesn't need to tell him that the tabloids don't follow their every move here like they do back home. "I can see the headline now. Seventh in line for the throne elopes to States with bodyguard."

He sighs at the sight of his pants on the floor. "You really are out to damage my reputation, aren't you? You're going to have me seen in wrinkly pants. You're really too cruel."

* * *

"The longer you wait the more wrinkles they get."

Mick decides to head over closer to Dante at this moment, making quite sure to step right on the clothes on the floor as he passes by and moves to check out whatever possible window options there are.

"I've never really been an 'over-the-threshold' kind of guy. With you, it's a lot more open this window and throw into my car from a hundred stories up' kind of guy." Mick can play along with this wedding banter with ease.

"I've already ran a background check on the woman. I've got four more pending." Always all business. Always.

* * *

"Why the hell are you here anyway? I thought it was the happiest bloody day of your life when you got taken off Dante Duty." Royal sighs and swings his legs over the side.

He glares at the foot-on-pants. Low blow. "I mean, I understand the family sending someone after the…incident. It would shake them up, as it has me. I'm fine by the way. Thanks for asking." He stretiches with his good arm for his pants. It takes a couple tries to get them up one-handed.

* * *

"I know you are. I intend to keep it that way."

The fact that Mick is even here should be enough to explain that he cares that this fool is still alive. That he's /fine/. Also, Mick doesn't exactly show emotions that easily. Beyond the ones he needs for his job.

List of Emotions: All The Non-Fun Ones.

"I'm here because I haven't failed on an assignment yet. And I refuse to let you being killed tarnish my perfect record." It's probably a lie. A lie with some truth. Whatever. He's not in the business of trying to placate this royal pain.

"I could get you a new bodyguard, if you like. Theere's a new rookie that just transferred in. After failing the firearms portion of his exams. Nine times."

* * *

"One, is this new bodyguard cute, two, is he or she more fun than you? Wait, don't answer that. I know the answer is a resounding…" Royal bends over, picks up a shoe, gestures with it, "…yes." He drops the shoe, then slides his foot into it.

"Do you know what wouldn't tarnish it? If I wasn't your bloody responsibility. Which I wasn't. Until you made me that way." He slides his foot into the other shoe. "You're going to have to help me with my jacket unless you want me to tear my graft." He motions to the blazer on the floor.

* * *

"I'm not here for you. I'm here for the Monarchy."

Mick finally steps away from the window and moves right over to grab at the jacket. Which he takes his sweet time dragging it across the floor before tossing it up and into his hands.

Mick just ignores any questions about the rookie he made up because he was trying to make a damn point! Not actually get Royal interested in a replacement. "I'll find some time to schedule you some fun. Perhaps we can get some ice cream delivered. And a booster chair with it." Even whilst in the middle of this war of words with Royal, Mick is holding the (slightly dirtier) jacket open for Royal to slide into.

* * *

"You can disrespect me to your heart's content. But I'd kindly ask that you don't disrespect fine fashion. My jacket never did anything to you." Royal slides his one good arm into the jacket. The other has to sort of drape over his shoulder and cover the sling.

"Look, I understand you've a job to do. But I do as well. I am a private investigator. I'm on this case because a meth hired me. That's not a job you just quit."

* * *

"You're on a case. /You're/ on a case?" Mick rolls his eyes for a moment and then sighs his way through the rest of it. "Alright. Fine. If you're going to continue to work this case then we're going to work it together. That way, we can actually solve it. And then you can go back to being non-threatened and we can go our separate ways once again. How's that sound?"

* * *

"I'm not going to quit being a PI after the case is over. But I'll take the separate ways part." Royal flashes a bright smile. It's the kind of smile he knows makes people want to punch it off him. It's not something he's used often upon coming to Bay City.

* * *

"I really wish I could say you've changed a lot."

Mick's final barb is thrown before he snatches up Royal's bag and reaches for the door. A moment of ONI use makes the discharge papers official and then he's leading the way out of the room.

"And you're not seeing that nurse again until after we're done. She could be in on this. Trust only me." Because he trusts no one.

* * *

"My god, you're paranoid. I've gotten along here for over a year with no one so much as snapping more than a tabloid shot or two. Why would it be any different now?" Royal's got long legs, so he can catch up to Mick, though he's still a little woozy from post-surgery drugs. He has to reach out to brace himself against the wall.

He shakes his head and starts to follow behind again. "I have changed. I've grown up. I know you might not think that possible, but I have. When was the last time you saw my arse in the papers?"

* * *

"It is my life's work to never have to see your arse again. Save it? Sure. See it? Never. Again."

Mick uses this sarcasm to mask the fact that he's slowing down to be nearby in case Royal needs some assistance. He won't overtly assist but he'll be close by in case he's needed.

"It's only paranoia until I'm right. Then it's the truth." Mick shrugs it off. "I'd actually love for it to remain paranoia. That would be ideal."

* * *

Royal takes a long, deep breath. "Look, you've rather a lot of experience in law enforcement, and I would actually appreciate your assistance in this case. But I assure you, what happened to me had nothing to do with my status in the royal family, and everything to do with me being in a situation I wasn't prepared for." The old Dante would have never admitted that, nor would he have been willing to defer to Mick's experience.

Instead, he'd probably pile into a private aircar and slip his security because he was being a buzzkill. But he was rather young then, and not yet a Duke.

"Yes, well, you could say that about rather a lot of things." He blinks, then slows his stride whether he's left behind or not. He lifts a hand to shield it from the lights, but he keeps moving. And he doesn't complain.

* * *

"I'll help you. And I'll keep you alive while you're playing PI. It'll be just like old times." Mick doesn't say if that's a good or a bad thing. Instead, he just kind of leets that hang in the air whilst they make their way out of this hospital and to his own aircar. Because this is the restart of a ___ful relationship.