I would have predicted this approximately never.
The staff calls them "rooms", but this is like any of the other cells here. It is small, though not claustrophobic, and the door with its single reinforced glass window locks from the outside. The two cheap cots are permanently attached to the floor, as is the stainless steel sink/toilet combo in the center of the far wall. The inset overhead lights are institutional fluorescent tubes, their light sickly, sometimes flickery, and liable to emit a certain high-pitched hum. The air conditioning is always set too high and the heat set too low.
Roscoe's side of the room is as close to personalized as it gets in Lassiter -- he has a cluster of trinkets on the desk, board game pieces and folded paper stars, a John Grisham book that doesn't seem like it would actually interest a ninth grader, a tiny bottle of eye drops, and a comb. Roscoe himself is lying fully dressed in bed, ugly shoes propped up on the rail at the foot of the bed and one arm over his eyes. He sits up with a flurry, putting his feet on the floor, when the cell door opens; he does not seem at all reassured when he recognizes the guard there. "Yeah?" he says, almost rudely.
"This is it," the guard is saying -- to Gaétan and not Roscoe, "they'll try to get this shit worked out soon." He's ushering in, unsurprisingly, presumably another one of Roscoe's Endless Carousel of Cellmates, judging by the identical scrubs, identical ugly shoes.
"Yeah, thanks," is the kind of rote reply. Gaétan isn't carrying much of anything by way of Personal Effects; a pillowcase in one hand with what seems like a very few small items rattling around the bottom. He trudges in as the guard heads off, eyes flicking first to the small accoutrements Roscoe has put up around his space and then to the other boy. He drops himself and his mostly-empty pillowcase down on the empty bed, chin lifting in a slightly wary greeting. "Still haven't worked out exactly what's the best thing to say here. Weather's usually safe, right? Haven't seen it in a bit but, I'm sure it's -- out there somewhere."
Roscoe doesn't say anything further to the guard, who doesn't bother to introduce them before leaving -- he just watches Gaétan get settled in, for all three seconds that it takes, with narrowed eyes. The tension in his posture loosens slightly when Gaétan speaks. "You can start with your name, if you want," he says, grinning, but he doesn't wait to hear a name before he adds, "You another one o' those let's-raid-Lassiter kids?"
Gaétan's posture eases marginally, too, when Roscoe's does. The wary look, also. "Nah. I am not the guy you want on your attack squadron." The tension in his shoulders here, the small clench of his jaw -- less casual than his tone. He pushes his thumb down against a forefinger, cracks a knuckle. "... I'm one of the guys they raided Lassiter for. And it's Gae." A beat later and a bit automatic: "My name. Take it you've been here a bit?" His eyes are skipping back to the desk.
Roscoe's grin twists sideways into a more skeptical look, wrinkling his nose -- "Yeah, they brought a ton of people I wouldn't want on my attack squadron," he says, rolling his eyes. He seems to immediately regret the eyeroll when Gae speaks again -- he speaks slightly over the last question. "Oh, shoot, I'm… Wait, are you the -- human?" The word is said like he had another one on the tip of his tongue, and in a loud whisper even though the cell door is shut. "Jeez. That sucks." He sits back on his hands, giving Gae an appraising look. "I'm Roscoe."
"Not exactly the jail rep I wanted to --" Gaétan begins, but then stops, checks himself with a small twitch of a smile. "... actually I can't really say I ever wanted any kind of jail rep at all. But two weeks ago I would have predicted this approximately never." His posture eases into a counterpoint of Roscoe's, casually propped forward with his arms on his knees. "Roscoe. My friend --" A pause, a brief considering hitch of eyebrows before he adjusts this to, "-- Kavalam said you're pretty much the guy to know."
"Sucks," says Roscoe again, not unsympathetically. He perks up at the mention of Kavalam, grinning -- "Sure, if you want a tour or whatever, I know my way around."
There's a look of relief that washes across Gaétan's expression, a small easing of his shoulders. "Man, you'd be a lifesaver. I feel like I'm gonna need some tips if I want to even survive long enough to get probed or whatever they want to do here, I've barely even managed to hang on to a meal yet. Please tell me there's -- I don't know, some guard here who isn't a total dick who can sneak in a granola bar or something. Shit, let alone a quiet place to eat one."
"What would they be probing you for?" says Roscoe, but he sits up, pulling his feet up to sit cross-legged and leaning forward, looking sort of eager to be imparting knowledge. "Some the guards or orderlies will sneak you stuff if they feel bad for you, and prob'ly everyone's gonna feel bad for you, so. You prob'ly wouldn't even need to play up how sad and pathetic you are. It only works on some of the guards, though, don't try it with -- actually, it might work for you 'cause you're a poor little human, but… some guards are your absolute last resort." He pauses, considering -- "There's places that are quieter, I guess, but you're probably more likely to get jumped there."
Gaétan turns a hand up, shrugging. "Half my family's been through here, by now it's probably Pavlovian. Their geneticists just see our name and get someone to start intake automatically, probably while salivating. Could probably start a whole other research project on that effect." He scrubs a hand down the side of his face, one eye squeezing shut as he rubs at it. "Man, should I be keeping like -- a list. Wait, it probably is good to keep a list. I have not started remembering who is who yet but I really better there's like a million of those guys and the guards all start to look pretty same-y. Are half of them really mutants? Does that even, like, matter with the -- power -- sort of -- off in here?"
"Hang on, I got lists somewhere," says Roscoe, unfolding his legs to go to his desk. He shakes a handful of individual stamps out of the John Grisham book and holds it out for Gae to see, his thumb propping open the back cover. The faded penciled lists covering the last few pages are maybe not very helpful -- though the handwriting is very neat and easily decipherable, they consist mostly of acronyms, asterisks, and question marks -- the only obvious one is a numerically ordered list of rooms in the E-wing. He is looking at the door and not at Gaétan when he responds. "A lot of them are mutants. You can kinda suss out which ones, but it doesn't matter unless it works in suppression or you're acting up in testing. And even then, like, faster and easier to just tase you."
Gaétan studies the list of rooms for a long moment before looking through the rest of the acronyms. "Feel like I've just been handed a cheat sheet to all the exams I -- am failing while I'm here." He glances up with a quick and lopsided smile. "You mind sharing the key for this cipher? Feel like you're the first decent thing that's happened since I got here. -- Sorry," he says, immediately, wincing, with a faint flush to his cheeks. "You've been here way longer and had way more --" His hand drops back to his knee, teeth sinking against his lip. "Just -- thanks."
"Yeah, uh," Roscoe takes the book back and frowns down at his own list. "A is Assholes. The asterisks are a sliding scale of who you really don't want to piss off. TH is Taser Happy -- you know what, I can just make you a key, that's prob'ly easier." He collects his handful of stamps on the way back to his bed, and climbs cross-legged back onto it, then gets to work putting the stamps back between the pages again. "Don't be sorry," he says dismissively. "If I didn't have people looking out for me when I first got here…" he doesn't finish this thought, just concludes, "This place sucks if you don't make friends."