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The room seemed to be decorated in shades of red and pink by someone who had utterly lacked taste or sense. Charon looked around and tried very hard not to lose his temper - losing his temper with nobody but Pain around tended to lead to only one thing, and it was the exact thing Charon had no intention of doing in a place like this.

"Nice, isn't it?"

It had to be a plot, Charon decided, feeling his resolve beginning to crumble already. No doubt Pain had chosen the tackiest, most tasteless room this place had to offer, knowing full well how Charon would react, or be tempted to react, at any rate.

"Charming," he said. The roses in the vase on the nightstand were fake. Strangely enough, someone seemed to have watered them.

"There's a bathroom, too," said Pain.

With heart-shaped bars of soap, Charon had no doubt; all the pillows on the bed (and there were quite a lot of them) were heart-shaped, in addition to being red, pink or something in between, of course.

"You seem to know your way around here." And he'd meant for that to come out a lot less prickly than it had. If Pain chose to dally around in places like this one while on Earth, it was nobody's business but his own; Charon had made it quite clear that he had no expectations whatsoever in regards to Pain's fidelity, and although Pain had joked about Charon having an affair with his Secretary (who was, if anything, completely smitten with Pain, the poor idiot), he'd seemed relieved at Charon's declaration.

"Oh, I've been here before, once or twice," Pain explained airily, not appearing to have noticed Charon's tone of voice, or perhaps simply choosing to pretend he hadn't.

Charon managed to bite back an inquiry as to the company Pain had been in those 'one or two' times he'd been here before. The curtains were red with a motif of little pink hearts.

"If you're a regular customer, you can save up for a weekend-special at a hot spring. Every time you visit here or in one of the other hotels of this chain, you get a stamp - collect twenty stamps and you can go soak all weekend at no charge at all, including all the food and drink you want. Pretty neat, isn't it?"

Hot springs were one thing one couldn't find in Avalon, and the main attraction that drew faeries to Earth. Several of the wizards were trying to figure out why, but it was expected that their investigations would take at least another decade, after which it'd probably be another hundred years before anyone would come up with an idea as to how Avalon might get a hot spring of its own.

"Indeed? How many more stamps do you need?" Charon was proud of the casualness of that question, and the way he'd phrased it so as not to ask how many times Pain had been here already, with someone not Charon.

"Oh, some." Pain set his staff to lean against a wall, frowning as it refused to keep standing.

"How many?" Charon snapped, then closed his eyes and counted to ten - a little too late, perhaps, but better late than never.

When he opened his eyes again, Pain was looking at him, not yet having answered Charon's question. For a moment, neither of them spoke, then Pain grinned and asked "Are you jealous?" at the same time that Charon felt obliged to point out that he was most definitely not.

"I'm not jealous," Charon repeated firmly. "I'm simply - "

"Nineteen," said Pain. "Nineteen more stamps to go before I can take a trip to an exclusive hot spring where nobody's going to look at me funny for wanting to wash my boyfriend's back."

Charon looked around the room one more time, trying hard to find something appealing in it.

"I think I still have that book with '101 Spells to Redecorate Your Bedroom for Just One Night' somewhere." Mainly, Charon decided, it was a matter of colour; if he got rid of the pink and red, and then did something about the heart-theme, the room might come close to being decent enough to spend a night in. The furniture would have to go, too, of course; maybe he could work out a way to teleport his own down here.

"Max is going to have a fit if he hears you actually used his gift for something."