[size13[font "Segoe Print" I'm a huge fan of the Mass Effect trilogy and I've already started writing a fan fic for fem Shepard and Garrus but I'm starting to struggle a little and would love for someone to help me out.]]
[size13[font "Segoe Print" It's been 10 years since the events of Mass Effect 3 have taken place, Shepard survived the reaper explosion at the very end of the game. But instead of returning to the Citadel she decided to remain dead and live a 'normal' life on a human planet called Neria. It was a basic planet and not really kept on the council radar. A simple trading planet. Shepard hasn't been to the citadel since the mission and now she must fly there as the regular pilot has injured himself.]]
[size13[font "Segoe Print" Thinking it was going to be a quick drop off and wanting to wait in the ship she finds herself in a hallway next to customs waiting for the ship to be unloaded. ]]
[size13[font "Segoe Print" I will go into more details if anyone is interested this is just a basic opening, as I said this is a fan fiction and would just like some ideas thrown at me lol. I would be playing Shepard as it's mainly from her point of view.]]
[size13[font "Segoe Print" Please no time wasters as this is special to me. Would preferably like someone who has finished the games or basically knows what happened.]]
[size13[font "Segoe Print" I also like something to work with. So I would need another writer who is happy to do 1500+ characters.]]
[size13[font "Segoe Print" I also understand not posting everyday, I can't do it myself. Once a week or even 2 weeks is fine. Any longer then please let me know, I hate it when people drop threads without telling me and I'm left waiting. But other than that it will be lots of fun and I love twists! So any ideas throw them my way!"
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Something bothered him. While silence was expected, there appeared to be a strain woven throughout this room. A second tip-off came from the leader; his smile instead of forced became extremely natural. And this natural smile was not your regular, friendly smile. The leader had something hidden, some bit only he had knowledge off.
The leader's first words answered Garrus' probe about possible suspicious activity. But that revealed no new information, just as the leader said before giving Garrus permission in searching about.
Even before Joe, the leader, finished, Garrus knew Joe had not finished his train of thought. That hiding smile had not only stayed but had grown a bit, while the body prepared to stand up. No doubt Joe was making the final preparations before delivering whatever malicious words he'd kept in reserve as the coup de grâce.
The [+brown "let's drop the formalities"] begun the stomach drop sensation, slowly gathering speed until hitting hard with the emphasized [+brown "THE Garrus Vakarian"]. Garrus tightened his face, not allowing himself in showing displeasure and frustration. He knew what Joe's next words would be, and they'd only make Garrus feel a deeper level of both displeasure and frustration.
But some small part in Garrus' turian brain clicked on. Beneath the venting anger, frustration, and displeasure, a familiar wave began spreading through Garrus' brain like the explosion of the mass relays. That hidden away part had for years been begging for a chance to be used once more, and now that chance came. Despite the risks, Garrus knew he had to shepard Shepard out of this place. While it sounded Joe understood in keeping secrets, such a sheep was valuable and could always be sold for the right price; every race did that, not to sound hateful against any race, but humans tended to sellout when one least expected it.
By the time Joe finished with his [i 'ha ha got you'] monologue, Garrus already had a plan cooked up. He hoped that the only people hurt, the person or persons operating the security hub, could be choked to unconscious and not have to give them more serious wounds. There did lay the alternative of making a straight dash, removing the risk of a colony wide alarm, but did mean cameras could spot them and the alarm would go up anyway.
[+blue "I will stay for night, and not make any further troubles"], Garrus' cold, businesslike voice grating outwards before followed up by his mandibles moving.
[size13[font "Sitka Text" As to no surprise Garrus refusing to sit Shepard clenched her jaw, she wanted to smile but from the look on Joe's face she didn't want to feed herself to the sharks just yet. But something else surprised Shepard, Garrus' reason for being here sounded genuine, whether it was or not she couldn't 100% know, but judging from the look on Joe's face he was buying it, which was a huge relief to Shepard.]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" But to Shepard's knowledge Joe still held all the winning cards, he knew about Shepard's identity now which of course meant that he also knew who Garrus Vakarian was. Shepard never took her eyes off Joe as he leaned back in his seat with a smile on his face, a genuine smile which made a shiver run down Shepard's spine.]]
[size13[#8B4513[font "Sitka Text" "I see, I'm not very up to date with the news on the Citadel much unless it's to do with the human alliance so please forgive me. I can fully assure you though that nothing shady is happening here. We're but a small colony of 100 or so and our only business is with the Citadel. However i'm sure you've heard that story before, so please feel free to take a look around I'll send everyone on lunch break so you won't be disturbed".]]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Joe now stood up and moved around the desk with that stupid smile still on his face. He first looked at Garrus and then turned his attention to Shepard. Both Shepard and Daniel looked at each other with a concerned expression.]] [size13[#8B4513[font "Sitka Text" "But for now let's drop the formalities. Is this truly the only reason you came to this planet? It's just the Citadel have never bothered before so there much be something or someone here that's caught the attention of THE Garrus Vakarian".]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Shepard felt sick to her stomach and her heart sank, in this moment she wished she could take everything that had happened on the Citadel back, she wanted to go back to being bitter and lonely, she wanted Garrus to be happy, but now he'd been dragged back into her problems. Joe placed his hand on her shoulder which bought her out of her panicked thoughts. She looked at Garrus with the faintest of smiles then to the floor.]] [size13[#8B4513[font "Sitka Text" I have been informed from my colleague here as the incident that occured on the Citadel involved you and one of my workers. Who up until this point had fooled us all into thinking she was Clare Williams but is in fact Commander Jane Shepard. But of course you already knew that didn't you? The lover who you thought was dead has escaped death for the 2nd time now".]]]
[size13[#8B4513[font "Sitka Text" "I think I would have done the same if I were in the same shoes. However Shepard has been with us for a long time and we're continuing to let her live here under the identity of Clare Williams... which she's agreed to. I think it would be for the best that once your official business has finished you say your goodbyes... for the last time. We both know Shepard is safe here and if the Council were to find out she was still alive when it could be fatal for everyone involved..."]]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Hearing the words leave Joe's mouth caused Shepards heart to ache. Because deep down in his comment there was truth, if she were to leave with Garrus and return to the Citadel she would be charged with Pseudocide which could mean punishment for the parties involved... Garrus. Keeping her eyes fixated on the floor she didn't even find the energy to look up at Garrus, it was too painful...]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Joe looked at the awkward silence between the two as he placed a hand on Shepards shoulder.]] [size13[#8B4513[font "Sitka Text" "I know this isn't allowed... but i'm going to make an exception. There's no one at the visitors quarters at the moment so a room is available for Garrus if he wishes to stay. I'm giving you one night to say your goodbyes and first thing in the morning he will have to leave Shepard. If anyone asks I will say that he needs to ask you questions and type up a detailed report which will go on into the night".]]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Now Joe turned his attention to Garrus and smiled faintly. The decision is up to you. Will you stay for one night or keep it to official C-Sec business?"]]]
After ending his monologue, an intriguing silence ensued. The silence bordered awkwardness but delved no further due to two pairs of eyes locking on Shepard's figure; Garrus' and Joe's. Assuming the human in front was one of the or the leader of this planet, then such two eye pairs made for an unnerving combination. This prompted Shepard in leaving the crowd and walking up close.
Truthfully, Garrus tired of the human's sad attempt in hiding the ferocious inner hatred. Garrus' own inner feeling of leaving this colony promptly resonated with the human's wish of having the Turian off his colony. The only problem Garrus wished to cause was the sudden disappearance of Shepard. He hoped such an outcome would occur, but more and more it felt some other problem would pop up.
After Shepard's apology, Garrus followed the human, along with Shepard and Daniel, away from the landing pad. Garrus made small-talk with the leader, assuming for now, extreme emphasis on the small half. The further they walked away, the more Garrus sensed tightening and heightening anger. Already treading lightly over cracking, rotting, and melting ice, somehow he'd need to tread even more lightly.
They walked into a room. This appeared to be an office of sorts, everyone sitting down while Garrus remained standing. Garrus was not one for sitting, even in informal situations, preferring standing in case he needed a quick reaction to something.
Facing the leader and donning a business face, [+blue "For the past two to three weeks there's been a slight spike in attempted contraband moving, severely spiking the past few days because of the celebration on the Citadel."] Turning so his side profile faced the leader, [+blue "They want to know if anything suspicious happened in this quiet part of space. Any unusual movements of ships, weird crash landing, basically anything out of the ordinary."] Waiting a few seconds Garrus turned to face the leader, looking straight at his eyes.
[size13[font "Sitka Text" You could have cut the tension with a knife, everyone who knew Joe knew what he was thing, 80% of them would agree with him. At this moment in time Shepard wished she had landed on a rachni planet or well anywhere apart from here. However the next thing that happened almost made her burst out laughing. Instead she had to tense her gut and clench down on her jaw. The nervous look on Garrus' face wasn't fooling anyone. Especially her. Oh Garrus acting was never your strongest point. But surprisingly Joe bought it and even fueled his ego a little, smart Garrus.]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Too busy lost in her own thought she only caught snippets of the conversation between the three, then all eyes were on her including Joe's and Garrus'. Taking a deep breath Shepard walked over, her heart pounding from seeing Garrus again so soon and the other was pure dread.]] [size13[#8B4513[font "Sitka Text" Clare, Mr. uh Vakarian here has come from the Citadel to go over the incident on what happened earlier. Nothing too serious just more protocols. Please be as quick as you can I'm sure he doesn't want to be here any longer than he has to".]]] [size13[font "Sitka Text" To your average outsider you would think he didn't want to take up anymore of that person's time. But to Shepard she knew exactly what he meant. 'Get off my planet, you're not welcome here and neither will any other species".]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" But Shepard and nodded smiling keeping up the shitshow performance in front of anyone as Clare Williams.]] [size13[#FF0000[font "Sitka Text" "Of course Sir, again Mr. Vakarian I'm terribly sorry for all the trouble I caused.]]] [size13[font "Sitka Text" She would have told him to make himself feel welcome but there was only so much she could get away with before Joe noticed and she could already see the vein about to explode at the side of his neck". Joe gestured for the 4 of them to go to his office where they could discuss the matter in private, This wasn't about to end well and Shepard knew it, too bad she didn't have anything on her to defend herself if it came to it but maybe Garrus did.]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" It was a short walk to the office and to Shepard's surprise Joe made frequent conversation to Garrus, being the friendly leader everyone thought he was, but Shepard knew exactly what he was doing, putting up a front so Garrus wouldn't suspect anything. But she needed to ask him why he'd come here, it was doubtful though that, that would actually happen. Once again Shepard was stood outside Joe's door for the second time this week and the uneasy feelings she felt before had returned. Joe quickly took his place behind his mighty throne as the peasants in front of him also took their seats. Joe turned his attention to Garrus and smiled.]]
[size13[#8B4513[font "I'll let you start from the beginning. What can we do to help the Alliance in anyway possible?".]]]
Garrus’ fabrication for his presence needed believability. Yet he simply could not spin any story, for one of the colonists here would know that the Turian on the Citadel and the Turian here was one and the same. That did limit the events he could spin, a disadvantage Garrus habitually disliked, but he could lie about the events after going their separate ways.
From this distance these humans would not distinguish his eyes scanning horizontally and vertically. The crowd appeared relatively small, more nervous than confident, and unarmed , which would make action easier if violence became the answer; Garrus did not want violence, killing innocents while under Alliance colors, only grabbing Shepard and jumping out of here.
While the hushed whispering, a few uncomfortable memories quickly passed, a single male human approached him. Garrus moved nothing, singling out attention on the human. Garrus noticed not just the smile but the tenseness of the muscles around the lips, which meant this human was putting on a show. Garrus disliked no-logical alien haters, no doubt about that, but he could understand the human’s position. These humans thought they were dealing with legitimate Alliance business, and the last thing they wanted in a report was an alien badmouthing about treatment.
Garrus slowly breathed in and then out, a habit from shooting snipers his whole career. But instead of delivering a short, brutal, death by words, Garrus dropped his arms down. His face angled down while the eyes nervously glanced around , putting on a nervous show. [+blue “Look, I don’t want to be here anymore than you want.”] His hands met in the center of his chest, fingertips repeatedly pressing into each other while the mandibles noiselessly clacked. [+blue “As to why I’m here”], permitting an amused, nervous chuckle, [+blue “Alliance business. They decided that after searching your ship for contraband, I’d be the best one to send being the last one to have dealings with your planet.”] Garrus’ arms moved back down, but the mandibles continued their erratic movement accompanied by nervous glancing; while Garrus felt the idiotic humiliation , he needed to sell the point that he was still afraid despite being armed and on Alliance business.
[+blue “I’d rather already be back at Palaven celebrating, while not bothering you, but they needed a favor. And favors as I found while fighting the reapers, can help tremendously.”] Unprompted, Garrus nodded his head once. [+blue “So let’s just get this over with fast. Just doing a check, so if you need to tell or show anything , I’ll follow around. And if you have any questions, I will answer them as best I can.”]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Seeing Garrus step from the ships platform it was as though someone had sucked all the oxygen from her body, luckily she was towards the back of the crowds of people now whispering amongst themselves.]] [size13[b[font "Sitka Text" ""What's someone from the Alliance doing here?" "What is a Turian doing here of all places?" "Joe isn't going to be happy about this".]]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" The last comment Shepard agreed with, Joe would be beyond pissed, the only thing stopping a full blown fight breaking out was the fact he was wearing the alliance armor and his reputation, EVERYONE knew who Garrus Vakarian was, which made things much worse, what would a Vakarian want with a small planet such a Neria?]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Shepard knew exactly the reason as to why he was here, Garrus was never one for giving up so easily on something he wanted and Shepard should have known better to think he would give up so easily on her now he knew the truth. But before she could scold herself she saw the look on Joe's face, stone fucking cold. Great..]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Holding her breath she watched as Joe walked towards the seemingly innocent Garrus with the fakest grin she'd ever seen on his face. Wanting to roll her eyes she stopped herself before she got into anymore trouble. Following sheepishly behind she noticed Daniel who hadn't said a word to her since the incident happened which saddened her a little, of all the people on the planet she was the closest with Daniel. Mostly because he wasn't against the mixing of species.]]
[size13[#8B4513[font "Sitka Text" "Welcome to Neria. Daniel here has just explained to me there was a slight incident with one of the colonists back on the Citadel, I hope she didn't cause too much trouble? And what brings you here?"]]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Shepard knew it would be like acid coming out of Joe's mouth so speak so politely to another species but he was covering his ass, last thing he wanted was for everyone on the Citadel to know he hated everything except humans. She kept herself well hidden, slowly the whispers drew to a silence. Shepard just like everyone else watched to await the Turians response to the 'warm' welcome.]]
This operation required a dainty, stealthy approach. All guns blazing, not even a single sniper kill, could not happen under any circumstance; unless they shot first, and even then the case would have to be clear cut. Despite this uncomfortability Garrus restrained the excitement beginning coursing through his indigo-blue blood. Not since the end of the Reaper War had an adventure of this calibre presented itself. Everything unknown and secretive, except for knowing Shepard was on-planet.
Shepard. Garrus paused. So far he had gone with the assumption that only two people in the entire universe knew of Shepard’s continued existence: himself and Shepard. But an uncomfortable voice echoed in his head reminding of another possibility; someone on the planet knowing Shepard. If that individual turned out as the leader of the planet, it would definitely be more difficult.
Either way, Garrus would play dum for the situation demanded it.
The ship begun its final descent towards the designated landing pad. There was no going back now. The moment the ship landed, he would have no choice but walk out and greet whoever would be greeting him.
Garrus braced, the final deceleration before the ship came to a rest on its landing gear. At the last moment he decided in removing the assault rifle, thinking the pistol and sniper rifle would be enough if shit hit the fan; the sniper rifle had never let him down in a fight.
The door silently slid open as a ramp extended down toward the ground. A wafting breeze blew through, a pleasant one, but Garrus maintained his stony, soldiery stare. If the ship was registered as an Alliance vessel, another thing he’d have to thank Liara for, Garrus would act like it; effortless since he’d never quit as a soldier.
After the last step and both feet on the ground Garrus stopped. While he usually would hold hands behind his back, being a stranger and armed, on this occasion his hands held in front of each other. A quick glance around only showed humans, not a sign of non-humans anywhere. A strictly human planet, of this was one, came as no surprise. All beings had their individuals who preferred living with only themselves. And these humans didn’t exactly seem comfortable with an alien on their planet.
His visit would need to keep short and sweet.
[size13[font "Sitka Text" In what felt like an eternity Shepard had glanced at the time on her omni tool more than she should have. There was nothing more boring than standing around in a warehouse and watching people come in and out. Joe knew this, he knew that Shepard liked to keep herself busy, she had always been the same way. Just because he knew her true identity now it's as though he had complete control over her. Letting out a sigh Shepard rubbed her head. That's exactly what he had over her.]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Suddenly multiple people were moving out of the warehouse and talking amongst themselves. Shepard managed to grab one of them and ask what was going on.]] [size13[b[font "Sitka Text" "Clare! Someone from the Alliance is asking for permission to land! This is so exciting, you should see Joe he's running around like a headless chicken, the guy has always want to be acknowledged for his 'work' on Neria".]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" For a few moments Shepard stood there in shock, she let go of the worker as she ran to where there was a crowd gathering. This wasn't good, he wouldn't be that stupid would he? Surely not? A sense of panic filled her body. Garrus didn't know what Joe was like, she didn't doubt for a second that Garrus wouldn't be able to hold his own. However Joe in a fit of rage could give away Shepards identity, she'd gone this long with everyone thinking she was dead, however the news reaching the council would cause a lot of problems indeed. Pseudocide wasn't exactly treated as a petty crime.]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Deciding to follow the crowd she noticed Daniel with a concerned look on his face. Shepard new exactly what he was thinking because she was thinking exactly the same thing, letting out a sigh Shepard shook her head.]] [size13[#FF0000[font "Sitka Text" "Oh Garrus I hope you know what you're doing..."
While traveling Garrus lounged in the pilot’s chair, an internal debate inside his head: how to land on the planet.
The most direct route would involve crashing into Nera, but that was where all the advantages of that path ended. A crash landing did not make for an impressive, in the good way, first impression; seeing as the planet did not receive visitors, a first impression had even higher meaning. The other problem with attempting a crash landing was the probability of being blasted out of the sky by a cannon, if they deemed the risk of a foreign object crashing high enough. And Garrus preferred not dying in dumb ways.
Another way involved setting up an accident to the ship and using that as an excuse so he could land. The problem with this plan came from inside Garrus. While the ship might not have been the best quality, it still was decent and in a way a gift from Liara; he had not the heart for breaking anything on this ship.
That left only one remaining option, the most safest but also an uncomfortable one; hailing the planet and asking permission to land. Garrus was weak when it came towards introductions, heavily relying on others. It has been that way with missions, in the Turian military academy, or just being recognized because of being part of the Normandy crew.
A synthetic voice broke through his skull and into his brain, notifying of slipping out of hyperspace and steadily approaching Nera. [+blue “Once we’re close enough, hail them with a request to land on their planet”], as he stood up and stretched.
Here, went, nothing.
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Holding the bottle in her hand Shepard practically ripped off the top, she poured the Whiskey Garrus had given her into a glass and knocked back the first shot. Clenching her teeth a little she leaned back resting her back against the chair. Moving her fingers up and down the glass she thought over what happened today. In fact so much had happened Shepard was finding it hard processing it all.]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Helping herself to another glass it was drank much slower the second time around, it wouldn't do anyone any good if she got too drunk to wake up in the morning as much as she wanted to. The plan was to drink to stop her mind from racing and to forget about meeting Garrus for a few hours. If she knew him well enough like she thought she did, Shepard knew Garrus wasn't about to just let her walk away.]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Breathing out a heavy sigh she changed her mind and knocked it back, feeling the warmth surround her body she closed her eyes. She'd always felt watched here being an 'outsider' but after all the shit that happened with Daniel and Joe today he was going to make sure she would be watched like a hawk, give her petty jobs so she wouldn't be left alone. Then her mind flashed to Daniel, Joe wanted a few words and Shepard just hoped he wouldn't be too harsh with Daniel. He was seen as a friend and the guy that saved her ass today from being exiled.]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Staring at the whiskey bottle made her smile. Her old team she missed more than anything, they were like a family and it killed her everyday knowing she couldn't visit or even call them. Liara and Tali she missed most of all, they were good friends and no matter what decision Shepard made supported her 100%. They would have gone to hell for her and she would have done exactly the same.]]
[size13[i[font "Sitka Text" The next Day....]]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Grabbing her head Shepard groaned, she'd finished the bottle and fell asleep at her desk. Glancing at the time she breathed a sigh of relief. All those early risings paid off, the body clock was set. Dragging herself to the bathroom she quickly showered and made her way over to the offices to see what bullshit job she was going to be given.]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Listening to everyone say their good mornings only made Shepard's headache worse but she put on a front and smiled returning the greetings. Low and behold like a king Joe appeared with a datapad. As he read out the names a smile appeared on her face, just as she'd predicted she'd been given one of the lesser jobs 'warehouse duty' which basically meant she was to stand around all day and watch people coming in and out of the warehouse. It was definitely the worst job she'd ever had.]]
The laughter diminished to a silence which lasted mere seconds before Liara asked another question, [+purple “Where?”]. Garrus raised his head, his body leaning backwards into the depths of the chair. The arms dissembled and lay resting against the couch. Liara’s tone suggested an answer wasn’t required, more so she asked out of curiosity. Opening his mouth, deciding if Liara couldn’t find Shepard on any planet then the planet’s name didn’t matter, first letting of a sigh, [+blue “A small planet called Nera. As I understand they do business with the Alliance but otherwise an insignificant, self-sufficient planet.”] Liara permitted herself a short chuckle, [+purple “Someone doesn’t think its insignificant if they’re asking you to go there.”] Garrus returned Liara’s chuckle with a slightly more linger and hearty one, followed by a relaxed shoulder shrugged. [+blue “At least it will be done right.”]
Standing up, Garrus bowed his head tomorrow. [+blue “I’ll get going for now. If you manage to find a ship, you know how to contact me.”] Liara also stood up, an upward nod of her head. [+purple “Don’t get killed now”.] Garrus shook his head with an amused expression, [+blue “After surviving all I have, it will have to be something worse than a Reaper to end my life.”] The two parted with a short, friendly hug.
The rest of the day and night passed in a sort of haze. The victory celebration was another spectacular display along with speeches by important officials. But it felt off. Part of this celebration included morning the death of Commander Shepard, except Shepard was not dead. And he was the singular creature in this galaxy, besides Shepard, aware of that fact. While Garrus partially understood running away from the glory, he didn’t think Shepard’s approach the correct one. Why not make a public statement about retiring towards some quiet place on a quiet planet and just ask not to be bothered? Why attempt in hiding a part of yourself from yourself, it’d be another burden forced to be carried everywhere.
Those sorts of [i why] questions slipped away with the appearance of alcohol, camaraderie, and festivity. Some of the Turians aboard the Citadel were soldiers from the classes he taught, and Garrus could not but help himself in regaling in a few war stories along with student-teacher jokes; good that they could look back on their training and joke about his no-nonsense, hardass approach.
Running into nobody else, not even from the Normandy crew, Garrus retired somewhere he knew where he’d sleep of the day and the late-night drinking.
The next day, nothing new happened at first. A slow awakening as everyone, one-by-one, rose from their slumbers and relit the festive torch. It was about midday, while sitting at a bar Garrus felt a two in his shoulder. Swiveling around in the chair, he became delightfully surprised. [+blue “What being you out here?”] He stood up, Liara having no inclination in sitting down. With a wave of her arm she walked off. He followed.
She led him all the way back to her private room. Whatever she wanted to say, only in complete privacy. Once inside, [+purple “I found a ship for you. It’s a bit of an old human vessel, but it’ll get you to where you need.”] Garrus smiled gratefully smiled, [+blue “I don’t even know how to thank you.”] Liara’s response in the form which bay and hanger the ship was located told Garrus nothing more needed saying.
Before flying out , Garrus walked back to Th e C-Sec offices. Finding Bailey, Garrus confirmed he could fly out. He only had about two hours until the re-enactment of the space battle began.
Then after finding the ship provided by Liara, Garrus simply went in and left the Citadel. The ship did come with a VI, nothing near what EDI was, but it would be enough to jump from here to Nera.
The Citadel grew incrementally smaller while approaching the mass relay. With his weapons loaded, incredible instincts, Garrus felt confident in dealing with any threat on Nera. He wasn’t traveling there to pick up Shepard, more to scope the planet out. Near the mass relay , Garrus sat down from pacing the cabin.
A few seconds later of blinding light and the ship jumped across galaxies towards Nera.
[size13[font "Sitka Text" What seemed to feel like an eternity, Shepard felt as though the ground was wearing down underneath her from the amount of times she had paced the hallway impatiently. Getting frustrated with herself she took her seat sitting back and crossing her arms. Her mind was racing with multiple thoughts. Technically Neria wasn't under Alliance rules which meant that Joe was judge, jury and executioner. If Daniel couldn't defend her well enough to please Joe he could easily have Shepard executed.]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" If this was the case a few days ago Shepard wouldn't have minded so much, she felt as though she'd escaped death enough times and it got to the point where she welcomed it... However things had changed now, she'd seen Garrus again and he knew she was alive. Garrus wasn't stupid he would find out information on Neria and it wouldn't surprise Shepard in the slightest if he tried to come and see her.]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" This was the problem, she wasn't worried for her own life it was Garrus' although he was one of the best soldiers she'd ever seen there's no way he would be able to fight off the colony on Joe's orders. She didn't want things to end in a bloodbath and Garrus wouldn't be as prepared as he would be for a mission, why would he need to be? A simple human colony of 100 people that looked after Shepard? There would be no threat.]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" As Shepard was beginning to feel the panic in her thoughts the door opened and Daniel stood in front of her, Shepard looked up trying to read his facial expressions but he wasn't giving anything away. Great she was already nervous enough the least he could have given her was some kind of idea. Standing up she followed Daniels gesture into the room as she sat down on one of the two chairs in front of Joe's desk.]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" The expression on Joe's face wasn't helping to settle her nerves, she wasn't exactly sure what he was the most pissed about, that she in love with a Turian or that she'd lied to him for the past 10 years, the thought almost made her smile but she new this wasn't the time to be telling jokes to herself. Keeping a poker face herself she looked up at Joe.]]
[size13[#8B4513[font "Sitka Text" Jane... After a discussion with Daniel who seems to be very much in favour of you staying I might say. At the end of the day I'm still the one to make the final decision on the outcome from your crime. As you know this is a very serious offence if the Citadel or even the Alliance were to find out your true identity. You have done exceedingly well to have kept it hidden for this long and I presume if things hadn't gone wrong at the Citadel and you running into the Turian you would have continued to live as Clare Williams. You have clearly stated your old life is behind you and you don't wish to return to it. Due to this reason and this reason alone I have decided to clear your charge and let you continue to live with us on Neria and your true identity will only be known to the three of us and us alone".]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Hearing the bullshit that poured out of his mouth acting as though he was a council member and he alone was able to decide her fate was absolutely ridiculous to her. But this was Neria and they did things differently and Shepard at this moment in time was feeling a huge wave of relief, she felt herself relax as she stood up placing her hands behind her back.]] [size13[#FF0000[font "Sitka Text" "Thank you Joe, I know this has put you in a very difficult position but I can't thank you enough for your decision you've saved me a lot of trouble, I promise there will be no more trouble from now on".]]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Joe said nothing else and this was Shepard's time to leave, turning to look at Daniel Joe had asked him to remain behind for some words in private, Shepard gave him a faint smile knowing that he would be taking some responsibility for the trouble caused on the Citadel and most likely for defending her as much as she did, she owed him one. As Shepard made her way back to her room there was a worrying thought at the back of her head, Garrus. Joe didn't know that he knew her true identity, no one did. What happend in the room was private, not even Daniel knew. Something was going to happen soon she just hoped he wouldn't come here. He has no idea what everyone is like to non-humans...]]
The two walked side-by-side in silence. Liara glanced around at the decorated Citadel occasionally glancing at her holopad; existing as the Shadowbroker meant no breaks at all since data travelled fast and to act on it one needed a zippy response. Another simple comparison for any basis of warfare, Garrus had seen and participated in fights where winning directly was due to lightning fast reaction towards new tidbits of crucial information. As to Garrus, already accustomed to the decorations , without thinking glanced around with only his eyes while walking in a military habit.
The citadel slowly filled up. While the structure , both inside and outside , was gargantuan, when races from all across the universe travelled into one spot then only one truly comprehend the number of souls existing. There were loners, couples, small groups, big groups, groups of one race, groups of multi-races, how one event United an entire universe was astounding. Even Garrus didn’t know how all the races ended up united, and he’d been with Shepard as she convinced the other races to settle their differences!
Walking away from the filled up areas to somewhere less loud, [+blue “Liara?”]. She stopped, turning around to face him. She didn’t need to ask with words, Garrus read the question off of her eyes. [+blue “Have someplace private where we could talk?”] A brief flash of confusion swept through her eyes, they hadn’t done business in quite a while, but Liara knew his peculiarities. [+purple “ In fact I do, just follow me”].
[+blue “Well this is a nice play to say the least”], a quiet and hearty chuckle. While it wasn’t attention grabbing, this apartment nonetheless was filled with luxury. Framed paintings hung against the dim white walls, offering color to contrast the whiteness. A small kitchen stood off in the corner, while a door , most likely, led to the bedroom. In between the entrance and the kitchen would be what would be considered the living room; a few elegantly fashioned couches which comfortably sat a group of people.
Liara sat down on one of the couches, [+purple “You wished to talk?”]. Answering with a precise nod, Garrus sat directly opposite Liara. While she sat straight and leaning back, he placed his elbows on his knees and formed a single hand which he rested his chin upon. [+blue “ I wanted to ask you a favor. I’m doing a job for someone , client discretion, and I need to fly somewhere.”] An amused smile rose on Liara’s lips, [+purple “You need a ship?”], light chuckling. Garrus chuckled in return , [+blue “Nothing fancy like this apartment. All I need is something simple I can fly and travel through a relay.”] Liara pondered silently , shifting herself more into the right of the chair she sat on. [+purple “How soon?”]. [+blue “There is no deadline”]. A single head nod answered his answer, [+purple “Just with everyone flying in today, I could not promise you one today. Besides, with the in-traffic I don’t think you’d be able to fly out”]. Both of them laughed for both knew that would be the case. Certain ships would be able to fly out, but even having a friend like Bailey Garrus knew he didn’t have enough of a case to be able to fly out.
[size13[font "Sitka Text" The tightening worry feeling in her chest only began to get worse. Shepard was greeted by everyone with a warm and friendly smile. Looking down at the bottle of whiskey she seriously considered taking a good swig now rather than later but she knew she couldn't, this was a crucial time and she needed to have a clear head rather than a whiskey speaking one. Both Daniel and Shepard made their way over to Joe's office, there was no reason for him to come down to see them. Shepard gave a smirk knowing that if he knew what had happened on the Citadel he would have lost his fucking mind.]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" There was no conversation between herself and Daniel but it was to be expected, she classed Daniel as a friend as he did with her and everything he knew about Clare Williams turned out to be a lie. So of course he was feeling many emotions, mostly anger towards her and Shepard didn't want to make things worse by pretending everything was 'okay'.
[size13[font "Sitka Text" To Shepard's dismay it didn't take very long to reach Joe's office and her mind was racing with different explanations she could come up with. But it was useless she needed to see how Daniel was going to react first there was no point trying to defend herself if Daniel was about to go barging in and shouting everything and who she was. Deep down Shepard was hoping that their 10 years of friendship meant something even with this huge secret hanging over them.]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Standing outside the door Shepard reached for the handle when Daniel suddenly grabbed her shoulders and looked at her with a very stern look.]] [size13[#008000[font "Sitka Text" "Listen to me... If you want me to save your ass do EXACTLY as I say, no smart mouth, no sarcasm nothing. I know how Joe can be, just speak when Joe asks you to and leave everything else to me..."]]] [size13[font "Sitka Text" Shepard gave a nod and looking at Daniel with the faintest of smiles. She was literally depending solely on Daniel now, there was a briefest sense of relief knowing that she wouldn't have to go through this alone but the sense of dread was very much still there.]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Daniel reached for the handle as Shepard simply watched on, the door opened and the two walked inside, slowly shutting the door behind her, they were both greeted with a warm and friendly smile from Joe. Shepard wondered how long that smile would last for once he found out what the two of them knew. He gestured for them to sit down with they quickly did so. The sooner this was over and done with the better.
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Joe looked at the two of them a confused expression beginning to appear on his face.]] [size13[#8B4513[font "Sitka Text" "Daniel? Clare? Is something the matter? Did something happen during the trip to the Citadel?"]]] [size13[font "Sitka Text" The smile soon disappeared from his face as Daniel began relay the events of what happened with Shepard and the Turian called Garrus. The entire time Shepard was looking a Joe but she noticed his expression changed when he mentioned the Turian. Shepard knew that Joe didn't like other species of aliens, it was known for him to turn away people that weren't human who had landed on the planet.]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" This was another of the reason as to why he preferred to stay under the radar and keep everything very basic. Shepard never fully understood it herself but you can't make everyone have the same views as you. Joe never asked her opinion on them and Shepard never bothered to say, she kept to herself and that's the way it had always been...]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" After Daniel had finished he glanced at Shepard as she gave a slight nod and opened her mouth to speak.]] [size13[#FF0000[font "Sitka Text" "Joe... I had my reasons which I know isn't an excuse but I would never cause harm to anyone I did it for my own stupid selfish reasons and I just wanted Commander Shepard to have died on Earth that day, I didn't want to go back to my old life, I wanted to start a fresh as Clare Williams so please think about the decision. However whatever your decision is I will respect it 100%".]]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Breathing out a little she looked at Daniel who had a faint smile, she then turned her attention to Joe who was looking at her sternly.]] [size13[#8B4513[font "Sitka Text" Jane this is a lot of information to be taking in and I will always be grateful to you for stopping the Reapers from destroying our home planet. However you have lied to me and everyone for 10 years. I do agree with you though about you not harming us, if you intended to harm us you would have done so already by now. But I have a question to ask you previously had a relationship with the turian Garrus did you not? And if so how do you feel about him now after all these years?"]]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Shepard knew exactly what he was implying but she wasn't going to lie to herself anymore she was going to be 100% honest with Joe and herself.]] [size13[#FF0000[font "Sitka Text" "I haven't seen Garrus in over 10 years and seeing him today, I gave everything I could to stay away from him but it turns out we were brought together again. I do still love Garrus and my feelings haven't changed for him since the day I 'died'. However Garrus does not know this nor will he find out, our meeting on the Citadel was a one time only thing and I won't be seeing him anymore...]]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" To hear those words come out of her mouth Shepard felt deep pain in her hear, but she knew it was for the best. She looked at Daniel who didn't have the best expression knowing she had just told Joe who despised aliens that she was still in love with one. But he told her to be honest and that's what she was going to do. After a few moments Joe asked her to step out of the room while he discussed things with Daniel one whether she should continue to be allowed to live on Neria or whether she must leave.]]
[size13[font "Sitka Text" Shepard nodded as she stood up and walked out shutting the door behind her. She instantly became worried as she began pacing the corridor and chewing her lip deep in thought.]]
Hearing the weak, pathetic whine of the junk ship as it took off, Garrus turned only his head. As the ship slowly hovered in a turn he breathed in, and sigh in sync with it flying away. Hopefully Daniel wasn’t going too hard on Shepard, but there’d be no surprises if that happened. Seeing someone you thought act differently definitely caused a shift in the mind, towards the direction of wanting to know what happened. Garrus pondered whether Shepard would explain to Daniel who she really were, because that would case quite a big shift for Daniel.
Garrus attempted distracting himself from this most recent occurrence, but in vain. The encounter opened many neural networks for past memories to fly along without resistance. One happy flashback followed by a sad one, then occasionally intermixing with a gunfight, all on a constant loop throughout the entire day. Didn’t help that barely any ships flew in nor with nothing interesting happening while checking them. Except for an overexcited group of Krogans, causing some concern because no one knew whether they’d be violent or not, the rest of the day went much too quiet for Garrus’ liking.
Before leaving, Garrus went towards Bailey’s office and have a short report. Bailey did hear of the dashing incident, but Garrus explained what happened while omitting William’s true identity. Satisfied with the report, Bailey thanked him for volunteering.
Upon parting with Bailey, Garrus once more approached the alcohol vendors. Unlike previously, he meandered, taking his time, thinking what he should buy. Being a Turian he did have a bias towards Turian alcohol, it had been awhile since he’d drunk anything else. While the danger existed with the body being incompatible with taking certain substances, humans rarely concocted anything crazy; most of their heavy drinks were straight to the point.
After buying a small bottle of whiskey from the human vendor, Garrus walked towards a quiet spot which he knew had a great view. As he walked his habitual glancing around and listening in alerted him that a single individual followed him: blue hair in that distinctive shape and a blue body meant that the individual could only be an asari. Garrus only really knew two or three specific asari individuals, but at this distance he couldn’t distinguish without appearing obvious.
Turning his back against the railing, the asari had kept up with him. As she approached closer , Garrus stone lips turned into smile. [+blue “Dr.T’Soni, what a pleasure to see you.”] With him being busy and Liara keeping in the shadows as the Shadow Broker, it had been some time since he’d seen her. [+purple “After all those years together, you don’t have to be so formal with me”, both ended up chuckling as they embraced in a friendly manner. [+purple “And someone is in a happy mood”]. Despite having to see Shepard leave, Garrus did indeed feel himself happy; was it because know he knew Shepard was dead? [+blue “Had two funny incidences occur while volunteering for C-Sec. One was a Krogan family which were seen as overly excited, they didn’t damage anything. The second is a more interesting one: ever hear of Neria?”] Liara paused, no doubt sifting through her memories, [+purple “That is a very small planet, almost no one pays attention to it. Had a deal with the Alliance Navy, but aside from nothing exciting has occurred there for some time.”] [+blue “A trade ship, and that was one piece of junk, came in, copilot nearly broke the pilot’s wrist and ended up hiding in the unloaded cargo containers; turned out the poor gal was shy being on board the citadel.”] [+purple “The citadel is big and does seem to give off the impression, especially the new one.”]] Both smiled, but Garrus hid that the copilot was in fact Jane Shepard. If Shepard wanted no one else to know he’d honor that agreement, even with the closest of friends and shipmates.
Then they walked, discussing events and what the other had done since last they met. Garrus also heard about how everyone else was getting thanks to Liara’s universe wide ties.
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