Disclaimer: Pokemon belongs to Nintendo, the Pokemon Company, and GameFreak.
The best thing about working for Team Rocket, Proton decided, was being able to eat on a regular basis- and not just eat, but cook, and eat well, with ingredients that were actually of an edible quality. For instance, at the moment, he was concocting a rather delectable-smelling stew with fresh meat, organic vegetables, and even some bourbon for flavoring. It smelled positively heavenly, and he could barely wait for it to finish cooking. Once or twice, in fact, he'd considered digging in the fridge for Petrel's leftover sandwich, just to tide him over until he could try his stew, but considering Petrel had been saving said leftovers for his own lunch, and that there hadn't been much left, Proton couldn't bring himself to eat it. Also, Petrel seemed to like everything doused in hot sauce and with jalapeños, and that never really sat well with Proton's stomach. Sometimes he had to wonder if his friend had managed to burn his taste buds out.
His stew was five minutes to being finished when Proton realized something: Petrel was working. When he was working, he didn't leave wherever he was working until he finished whatever he was working on. He'd wanted to eat the remainder of his sandwich for lunch, but his sandwich was here, in their fridge. It didn't exactly take a genius to realize that unless Proton did something about it, Petrel wasn't going to eat, that day, and he felt a little silly for not realizing his friend's dilemma, sooner. He wouldn't mind letting his stew simmer a little while he ran Petrel's lunch to him, but... well... it'd been a while since the two of them had been able to sit down and eat lunch together like normal people, what with how busy they'd become recently.
Five minutes later found Proton spooning generous amounts of his stew into two separate tupperware containers, grabbing some plastic cutlery, and retrieving Petrel's leftovers from the fridge before he grabbed his keycard and left their apartment, strolling casually towards the elevator. Generally, Petrel worked with the medical and science departments, splitting his time between playing doctor, ordering the grunts around in the public labs, and working on his own experiments in his private lab. He probably had some sort of schedule, but Proton never really paid attention to it, in the first place- they were all on the same floor, anyways, so it wasn't like he'd have to hop all over the place like he did when he went looking for Archer.
He poked his head into one of the major labs and glanced around before catching the eye of one of the scientists, there, who excused herself from the conversation she'd been having with one of her colleagues and approached him.
"Executive Proton," she greeted, "it's a surprise to see you, here. Were you coming to manage us for the day, or did you need something, Sir?" Proton glanced around one more time and then shrugged one shoulder.
"I'm looking for Petrel," he said after a moment. "I got the day off, noticed he left his lunch in the fridge, again, didn't wanna hear him whining when he got back from work." The scientist smiled softly.
"Of course, Sir. Executive Petrel is working on his own projects, today. He stopped to give us our orders, this morning, but otherwise he hasn't been in here all day." Proton flashed her a smirk and mentally snickered when she straightened her posture the slightest bit and blushed a little.
"Thanks, doll," he said before spinning on his heel. "Now get back to work!" Petrel's office was on the far side of the floor, wedged right in between the two departments he manned as a sort of transition. While the rest of the labs on the floor had merely brass plates depicting the lab numbers, it seemed Petrel had seen fit to remove his nameplate altogether, spray paint "Petrel's Office" in unown stencils across where said nameplate had once been, and attach a cork board right underneath that served no purpose but to be a place where both Petrel and his subordinates could pin up funny printouts, doodles, and other completely random things. Over time more and more people had begun pinning things up, and so now, on either side of the door, were two more cork boards, large and long and covered, themselves, in pictures, funny lab report copies, and just amusing things in general. Proton paused to admire one rather well-done stick drawing of Petrel holding he, himself, over his head and declaring in all caps that he "found Proton", to which Archer was replying "are you positive?" before opening the door carefully and stepping inside.
Petrel's lab was well-lit, and smelled of cigarette smoke. The walls were a pristine white, the floor cold concrete, and there were lab stations almost everywhere in the room. Petrel's desk was in the back of the room, facing the door, and flanked on two sides by whiteboards attached to the wall. Chemical equations were scrawled in the purple executive's horrible handwriting everywhere, as well as more of Petrel' bored doodles. Petrel, himself, was standing in front of the whiteboard on the back wall, stroking his goatee thoughtfully as he peered at something Proton couldn't quite see. He was wearing a white lab coat over his regular uniform, but with his gloves off and his sleeves rolled up to the elbow, Proton was surprised by how natural it all seemed- then again, he always was.
"It's an artistic masterpiece, isn't it?" Petrel said once Proton had strode up next to him. He was referring, of course, to the poorly-drawn rayquaza fighting an equally poorly-drawn mudkip. For all of his intelligence, an artist Petrel was not.
"It's beautiful," Proton deadpanned, "get that shit in a museum, man." Petrel simply laughed and leaned back against the table behind them.
"Don't quit my day job, right?" he replied. "I need more adderall. I've been in here all morning, and this is probably the most I've actually finished. I'm glad my dad still lives in Celadon, he'd be pissed if he knew how much I goofed off. So!" He removed his reading glasses and dropped them into the breast pocket of his lab coat, grinning. "To what do I owe the pleasure, psycho?" Proton waved his tupperware.
"You left your sandwich in the fridge. I thought you might appreciate being able to eat lunch. Also, I brought you some stew." Petrel's eyes lit up at the mention of food, and he waited patiently as Proton separated the two containers and pulled the plastic spoons out of his pocket. "So, P, whatchya workin' on in here?" Petrel was a little too busy tearing through his sandwich to answer, and so he simply motioned to the chemical equations and shorthand notes on his whiteboard.
"Genetic engineering," he said once he had swallowed enough of his sandwich to talk. "I think I've got the decay down, and I tweaked the serum, a little. I'm convinced, Pro- this time, we got a winner. It's gonna work. I've got a prisoner who wandered into our Mahogany base, last week, that they're gonna bring me to test on. Today he's just as human as we are (Proton snorted at that), but in several day's time, the little punk's gonna be more of a slimy raticate than my brother is." Proton raised an eyebrow.
"I didn't know you had a brother," he replied evenly. "He's that bad, huh?" Petrel rolled his eyes.
"Oh, you have no idea. I mean, Dad was always saying he didn't have favorites, but Viper..." He sighed. "See, no matter how hard I trained, I could never bulk up like my little bro or my dad did, and my dad's a pretty high-ranking trainer in the HQ back in Celadon. He wasn't impressed when the aptitude test landed me in the science department, even if I was starting as a Lugia-damned admin. And... well, yeah, we celebrated when I got promoted to Exec, but Viper'd gone into the training department like he did, and he was always so much more proud of him than he was of me, and...You know, sibling rivalry, and all that."
"Only child," Proton reminded him. "Silbing rivalries are foreign to me, P." Petrel laughed.
"Yeah, I suppose they would be, wouldn't they?" He'd finished his sandwich, and as Proton had expected, it wasn't enough (Ariana was always mentioning how envious she was of the two of them, because, as she put it, they were "able to eat like snorlax and never gain any weight"), and the greenette watched curiously as his friend started on the stew, next. "Holy fuck. Proton, this is delicious. What'd you make it with?" Proton simply smirked.
"You've gotta guess," he said as he place the lid back on his own, now-empty tupperware. "Go on. You should be able to get most of it." Petrel frowned thoughtfully and took another taste, thinking it over very carefully.
"Alright, alright... I taste... bourbon... chicken stock... obviously the taste of the carrots, potatoes, onions... Annnd... I'm gonna say basil, thyme, salt and pepper, and possibly even a splash of teriyaki." He glanced up. "How'd I do?" Proton gave him a golph clap.
"Once again, your sense of taste amazes me," he commended. "Though there's no teriyaki, but I kinda know why it tastes like that." Petrel took another spoonful.
"Mm- one thing, though: what kind of meat it this? It sorta tastes like a mix between salami and roasted chicken, maybe with a hint of ham..." He paused his chewing as Proton's smirk grew into an incredibly wide grin. "...Pro...?"
"So you like it, then?" he asked. "It's good?"
"...Pro, what did you put in my stew...?"
"But you liked it, right?"
"Pro, seriously, what the hell did you put in my stew?" Proton snickered a bit before replying.
"It's slowpoke tail, Petrel." Petrel's eyes widened, jaw dropping slightly as he stared down at the stew he had actually eaten over half of before his stomach heaved, and his hand flew to his mouth as he set the tupperware to the side and slid off thew table, running to retch into the biohazard trash can. Proton couldn't help but laugh. "Aw, c'mon, P, you said you liked it!" As soon as he was able, Petrel scowled at Proton over his shoulder.
"I fucking hate you," he choked out. Quickly, however, he had to turn and retch again, and Proton only laughed harder. That was so worth it. As he sat there, practically howling as he laughed his ass off, he couldn't help but wonder just what he should cook for dinner.