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Poke.

Connor paused his stroll and instinctively jolted at the umpteenth stab gently thrust into his side followed by a snicker from a male DPD colleague. The android covered the ‘attacked’ area with a very faint blue blush tinting his cheeks with a frustrated sigh. He managed to recollect himself and press on with his journey to the break room to fetch Hank a cup of coffee, despite the older man insisting that he could do so on his own.

As he walked through the precinct, the prototype took an advantage of his solitary venture and began thinking to himself, his LED fluttering a golden hue as it whirled in deep thought. What stroke him odd was the fact that several of his fellow policemen and women would jab at his abdominal area. Even Gavin Reed couldn’t keep himself from giving in to the temptation to join in. While he was aware of the natural customs of human playfulness, he couldn’t shake off the feeling that something was off. Was it some sort of joke he had missed? Was it some strange fad? Was this just a setup of some sort?

Nevertheless, Connor simply decided to brush it off and cast his thoughts aside as he finally reached his destination after stopping so many times from the constant prodding. 

“Morning, Robo-Cop,” came the friendly jest of one Tina Chen, who stood at one of the bar tables, a cup of coffee in hand.

“Good morning, Officer Chen,” Connor returned the greeting with a warm smile as he strode over to the coffee dispenser atop of the cabinet. “I’m just here to retrieve a cup of coffee for the Lieutenant. I would offer to make some for you, but you appear to already have one.”

“You’re a real gentleman, Connor,” Chen scoffed lightly, smiling, despite the minuscule sarcasm that dripped into her tone. When she looked up from her caffeinated beverage, however, she shifted her gaze to the back of the android’s Cyberlife jacket. Is that…?

The prototype grabbed from the top of the stack of plastic cups to the left of the coffee dispenser. He inputted the usual go-to choice of the grizzled man: expresso, steamed, foam. After a minute or two, he was finally finishing off the beverage and capping it off with a lid over the brim.

Prod.

The android would have dropped the hot drink and spilled it on himself and the floor, had he grabbed it before his sensors registered the light jab at where the artificial ribcage lay. He had to have jumped about a foot in the air with a rather uncharacteristic squeal for the officer to burst into giggles herself.

“H-Holy shit! Since when do androids squeal?” She cackled, holding herself.

Connor could feel a heat rushing through his face as he opened his mouth to speak, only for no words to come forth. “I-I… I need to excuse myself!” With that, the android snatched the brewed beverage and rushed out of the break room.

“Aw, c’mon! Don’t get all flustered! That was adorable!” 

The deviant paid no mind to the comment as he paced through the precinct, ignoring the side glances thrown his way. He made no notion to stop his hurried walk toward the men’s restroom, grateful that no one else was around to see him in his current state.

He tore the jacket off and draped it over a mounted hand dryer before he stood in front of one of the communal sinks. He then turned the cold water valve and, using his hands to form a makeshift bowl, proceeded to toss the small portions of water into his face in hopes of ridding himself of the faint blue glow that dispersed along the android’s cheeks. After a few splashes, he peered up to the mirror to find that he only managed to extinguish a partial amount of the blemish. He dipped down and repeated the process over and over again until he finally abolished the sapphire from his face.

With a resigned sigh, the RK800 reached over to retrieve his jacket, only to fix his gaze on a sticky note secured to the back of it with a small strip of tape. Naturally, he plucked it from the fabric and scrutinized the following message:

Poke me!

Connor could recognize the somewhat messy calligraphy from anywhere. He could only deduce that this was the work of…

Hank!”

━━━━━━

Hank squinted his vision as he peered at the current case files that displayed on the monitor of his desktop. He rubbed his eyes with his knuckles and discharged a weary sigh, running a hand over his face. It was too early to be studying homicide files, especially without the welcoming embrace of hot, caffeinated bliss of a good cup of joe flowing through his systems and gradually awakening his mind.

He shifted his focus from the screen and toward the coffee-filled cup that was presented to him through a slam onto the surface of his terminal desk, a familiar-looking note plastered onto the plastic lid. With a smirk, he cast his view to the perpetrator. “So, you finally figured it out, eh, Detective?” he remarked.

“I’m glad you find this to be humorous, Lieutenant,” Connor chastised, shooting the older man a mild glare, yet no heat drifted from the bore. “Now, would you care to explain as to why I found this note on my jacket?”

Hank chuckled and leaned back into his chair in a casual manner, taking the first swig from his beverage before returning his attention to the miffed android. “Alright, alright. You wanna know? Grab a chair and take a seat, Connor. It’s storytime.”

━━━━━━ 

A drowsy groan resounded in response to the sound of cracking bones filling the empty living room, save for a snoozing Sumo and a barely conscious Hank. The middle-aged man had only just begrudgingly risen from his slumber to prepare himself for yet another slow, mundane day at the precinct - paperwork, studying case files, paperwork. Did he mention the fact that he despised paperwork with a passion? He couldn’t bear the thought of going to work without something to look forward to, besides putting those who made the world a fucked up place to live behind bars

He could hear the sound of running water from the bathroom as soon as his hearing grew less fuzzy - it was obvious that Connor was up and about and taking a shower. He knew that the android had instigated showering into his morning routine, despite the fact that he did not need to.

The sudden rumbling within the pit of Hank’s stomach told him to investigate the kitchen for anything to eat, and he did just that. Upon entering, however, he found a plate of bacon and eggs sitting on the surface of the kitchen table, seeming to be recently prepared. The only thing that stuck out from the eggshell ceramic was a pale yellow sticky note hanging from an edge of the plate.

It’s not wise to work on an empty stomach, or without a proper breakfast. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, after all. 

-Connor

P.S.: Donuts are not an option. :)

“Fuckin’ android,” Hank chortled at the sassiness of the postscript as he gently removed the piece of paper from the plate. He could feel his heart swell as this reminded him of the notes he used to receive from Cole, ranging from dinner requests (which would often be for pizza) to simple ‘I love you’ messages. He thought to himself momentarily before an idea sprouted from the back of his mind. 

Taking a clean note from the stack that had been abandoned on the table, he quickly inputted a short tiding before he marched toward the bathroom. He peeled the door with caution, so as to not draw any suspicion from the deviant. Thankfully, the young man seemed to be too invested in the cascading warm waters to pay attention, as he was facing away from the door with the curtains surrounding the porcelain tub. The android’s jacket hanging from the towel rack was practically presented to him on a silver platter, the back facing him. Hank made no mistake of wasting his time, and, after approaching it, proceeded to press the note onto the blazer, sealing it in its place with a piece of tape he retrieved before he headed to the bathroom. He made haste and left the prototype to his own devices, snickering all the while.

“Like takin’ candy from a baby.”

━━━━━━ 

Shifting in his own chair, Connor blinked and tilted his head to the side in a state of befuddlement as the story came to a close. “So… the note was stuck to my jacket all day?”

“And you hadn’t a goddamn clue!” Hank burst out into a fit of laughter at the android’s stupefied expression as he clutched his temples with his right hand, nearly spilling his coffee from the racking of his frame.

The android’s face was once again flushed with a bright turquoise, burying it into his palms in a desperate, yet feeble attempt to hide. “I’ve never been so embarrassed in my life…” He moaned, absolutely mortified.

The lieutenant nearly choked on his residue snickers as he leaned over to place a comforting hand on his partner’s shoulder. “Aww, there’s no need to be embarrassed, kid.”

“I am unconvinced,” The deviant responded doubtfully, not moving from his current position. 

Hank would be lying if he said that he wasn’t feeling a sliver of remorse growing within the pit of his stomach. Jesus, the kid looked so pitiful. He still found his bashful state endearing, nevertheless. “Okay, okay, I’m sorry. I just couldn’t help myself. Sometimes, it’s a parent’s job to tease their kid.”

Disconnecting his face from his hands, Connor couldn’t fight the ear-splitting smile that stretched across his blue-tinted face upon detecting the older man addressing to him as ‘his kid’. He just couldn’t hold a grudge against him, since he meant no harm, minus the faint bruise in his pride. He eventually decided to let bygones be bygones.

At least, for now.

━━━━━━ 

What Hank did not expect, however, was to wake up to lack mobility, as if some force was holding him down. He ultimately found himself bound to his own bed by what must have been hundreds of saran wrap layers. While he admitted that it was a classic, he grew mildly annoyed by the fact that he received no answer after calling out for Connor several times. It would be even funnier if he didn’t need to take a piss.

He eventually gave up on his hapless struggling and fell limp onto the mattress and waited for his sight to lose its fuzziness. He froze as he shifted his gaze forward to find a poster-sized sheet tacked to the wall with the following message:

It’s also a child’s job to tease their parents. But don’t worry, I’ll let you out as soon as I return from my walk with Sumo, which should be approximately an hour.

-Connor.”

Oh, that little shit…

Motherfucker!”