Mostly nonsense ficlet inspired from Nhaneh’s photo set here. Apologies for any strangeness.
“You turned your back on everything we believed in. You betrayed the Alliance. You betrayed me.”
Kaidan felt his eyelids flutter open and the dull grey ceiling of his cabin entered his view. The words from his recent trip to Horizon echoed in his mind, angry words exchanged to a phantom he had long since lost hope of ever seeing again. Duty conflicted with love, love conflicted with values and values? They divided everything into black and white. And this definitely went into the black category.
He sat up and rubbed at his eyes, the pulsating sensations of an incoming migraine at his temples and emanating from his headjack. Great, that’s going to make my report on the missing colonies and Shepard’s involvement easier. He thought bitterly as he made a move to get out of bed. A throat being cleared came from his side and his head snapped to the offending noise. Shepard sat in the chair off to the side, a curious expression on her face as she delicately sipped from his coffee mug. Not only was that impossible because she was elsewhere with Cerberus, she was also not dressed in her usual armour or uniform.
Kaidan felt his gaze rake up Shepard’s tanned legs, taking in the large amounts of skin that she was showing. She seemed oddly at ease for someone that was in an Alliance commander’s quarters after joining the enemy in nothing but her knickers and a hoodie. She took another slow sip of coffee.
“You know Staff Commander, I’m pretty sure it’s not regulation to be gawking at me like that.”
“What are you even doing here? How did you get on board?” Kaidan fumbled over his words as Shepard shifted in his seat and crossed her legs, it took all of Kaidan’s attention not to keep shifting his gaze onto them.
Shepard waved her hand dismissively, “How is not important, why, however is. We didn’t exactly end our last conversation on a positive note.”
“Our last conversation?’ Kaidan repeated in disbelief. ‘You’re working for Cerberus! You didn’t even message me to let me know that you were alive for God’s sake.”
“What if I’m telling the truth Kaidan? Don’t you think that I wouldn’t have tried to contact you? Joker saw me being spaced, there was nothing left of the Normandy except the wreckage on Alchera. Do you really think that I would have given up everything in my life to go rogue?”
Kaidan sighed and dropped his head into this hands, fingers scrunching up his hair as he considered the possibilities Shepard had tried to mention on Horizon but ignored. He could hear the hum of the ship and the tingling of the drive core, his cabin entirely silent as he thought. Like a tomb.
“I love you, you know. I know I never really said it when we were together but I do. It tore me apart when you… died. You were the first woman I ever loved since Rahna, the first person who looked underneath the biotics to see the man.’ Kaidan turned his head to look at her, ‘And now those two years I spent without you, adjusting to never seeing your face again… you act like nothing happened. Maybe it didn’t for you. Maybe I judged you too quickly.”
“You can’t be a Saint all the time Kaidan. You can’t give up on us. There’s always the chance that I’m telling the truth and I’m only working with Cerberus to stop the Collectors.” Shepard said as she sat forward in the chair, clasping her empty hands together in earnest.
“I’ll have to think it over Shepard. I’d like to think that there’s still a chance, I guess I should thank you for a few things.” Kaidan said.
“For what? I haven’t done anything Kaidan. You just needed a way to think this over, a way that you could process your feelings. I’m not actually here.” Shepard said matter-of-factly and stood up, a small smile on her face.
Confusion crossed over Kaidan’s face and he suddenly lurched upright. He blinked owlishly and looked around. His cabin looked exactly the same, his coffee mug on the desk where he had left it and the dim glow of the lights flickered on. He scrubbed a hand over his face and groaned.
“I’m going insane. This is it.” He said to the air before he reached over and grabbed the data pad on the side table. His fingers skimmed over the screen and he took a deep breath.