Hotel breakfast.

" Ahhhh, I feel like gar~bage!" William said, singsong voice, as he stretched and drank whatever the hell juice they served with breakfast in Septim.

" Hmm, you could be feeling worse," Nova snarked.

" Why do they always serve salad with everything? Nova, eat these evil leaves."

He shoved his bowl across the table.

... Nova found himself incredibly grateful that no one else was down there, but he also found that it was far too early to be up.

" What, you think I like them? Am I your garbage disposal?" he sniped back. He actually did like them, but that was beside the point.

" Already said I felt like garbage, are you gonna take care of me?" William replied, unabashed.

" Gonna leave you in an alleyway. Free William to a loving home."

He laughed and it sounded harsher than usual somehow.

" Oh, Nova! I'm already used to stuff like that, I'll just find my way back to you. I pride myself on my loyalty."

" Mhm. Sure."

" When have I ever-" William paused in the middle of speaking, expression still the same, and then whirled around excitedly. " Oh fuck, fuck, I forgot, Nova, turn on the telescreen in here! Where's the remote? Hit it! I didn't get up this early for nothing!"

Nova was taken aback by his sudden excitement; Unsure of what to do or say, he got up and looked around the room for the remote. The last thing he wanted was for there to be even more noise; William's chipper tone was enough for his hangover already.

Still, he found himself obliged to turn on the telescreen.

" -nd more morning news- DASS fleets in Septim? What this may have to do with the Granary Protest, and more, after the break."

William kicked his chair back, huffed.

" Damnnn, we have to sit through the commercials?"

" At least we aren't missing whatever you're so excited about," Nova replied drily, taking William's salad.

A moment passed as advertisements played.

" Wille..."

He started to speak.

" Ah, it's back on!" William jumped forward in his seat again. " Noooova, look!"

... Hm. Unexpected.

William was on the news.

" When did you even find the time to go record an interview with them?" Nova asked.

" Who knows. I manage," He said. " Don't I look great, though? I got my uniform dry-cleaned for it. Stiff as a board. Collar kept cutting into my neck, though."

... The William on the news looked tall, reserved, and answered questions about the agriculture bill controversy with a great deal of eloquence and nuance.

It was another moment where Nova couldn't understand him at all.

" You look more handsome in real life," Nova said. " Shorter."

" You really think so?" William asked, swishing his cup around. " ... I like my public image a bit more than myself."

A silence. Political buzzwords floating off the news broadcast.

" But that's not real, Wille."

" ... A board meeting will be held about the corporate holdings invested in-"

" Oh... Yeah. I have to go to that," William observed mildly.

" Why don't they just send that old bitch?"

" Oh, she's going too."

" Sounds miserable."