microfilaments

Thumpety thump thump thumpety thump thump look at Kinesin go
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Myosin, kinesin, and dynein are important proteins governing internal transport. Myosin attached to organelles associates with actin microfilaments to enable the continuous flow of cytoplasm called cytoplasmic streaming.

Kinesins and dynein enable the movement of organelles along microtubules. They attach and move along microtubules. Most kinesins transport organelles from the center towards the periphery of the cell, anterograde transport. Dynein, and a few types of kinesins transport towards the cell center, retrograde transport.

Limit of the Flesh (12)

(Shepard and Vakarian, post-war but pre-relationship. Also on AO3.)

ETA: I realized a little too late that this chapter should probably have a content warning. There’s nothing drastically out of line with the tone of the rest of the story, but there is a scene in this chapter where Shepard realizes that she doesn’t mind when Garrus lands a hit when they’re sparring, and the realization is framed in fairly depressing terms. I’m not sure if you’d call it self-harm or manipulation or both, but it’s dark, it’s there, and it’s part of an overall arc about Shepard’s mental health and slow crawl towards recovery.

12.

He never asked what had happened in that last, desperate hour as she hung over London, and because the only person she’d consider telling hadn’t asked, there was no one who knew the whole story. In the hospital while hurry-up-and-waiting between bouts of nerve grafts for her new biomechanical leg, Shepard had been sure the Alliance would at least send an intelligence agent to collect an account of whatever she admitted to remembering; but instead they’d left her alone, and eventually she’d concluded that the brass considered that unaccounted period of time between Admiral Anderson’s death and the Citadel’s explosion self-explanatory. The Crucible had functioned as it was supposed to function, and the Navy was fond of functionality.

And since Garrus never asked, Shepard carried the weight of that hour by herself. She carried it around her neck like a mariner, across her shoulders like an Atlas; she carried it like she carried Kaidan Alenko and James Vega and three hundred thousand batarians who had lived in the Bahak System. Even if Garrus asked to share a portion of that burden, she wasn’t sure she would let him take up what was hers and hers alone to bear. The weight of that hour shamed her, but the unrelenting business of living swept her towards something that could in the right light resemble acceptance.

Garrus was reading on the couch when she finished updating the Valkyrie’s financial records and going over their operating costs for the month. The Council paid its Spectres generously, and war heroes didn’t want for money, but Shepard had only lived as long as she had because of her ability to ration her resources. It helped that Garrus was better at repairing their equipment than any professional gunsmith; Shepard herself was decent enough at maintaining and upgrading her rifles, but Garrus could take a third-hand Elkoss Combine M-8 and rebuild it so it fired like something straight out of the Spectres’ special stocks.

The greatest expense was the Valkyrie herself – both the cost of keeping her in the sky, and the cost of all the registration fees and docking licenses required to fly her legally from one side of the galaxy to the other. The communications array cost a hell of a lot to maintain, too, since it was as advanced a system as it was possible to fit on a ship of this size. After the ship and the armory came all the other expenses of living: food for both of them, armor and ammunition, clothes and weight equipment and toiletries.

There were medical costs, too, and not only the bills from patching one or the other of them up when some mercenary bullet punched through their shields; Garrus’s jaw was held together with microfilament implants, and his hearing on the right side had slowly failed him until surgeons had artificially reconstructed his entire aural canal. Shepard, meanwhile, was as much machine as woman. Miranda would’ve probably been able to better integrate her newer prosthetic leg with the older work done by Cerberus, but Shepard managed. Maybe she’d mention it one day; maybe she wouldn’t. At any rate, they required periodic check-ups from a bevy of specialists, although they both dragged their feet when it came to making those appointments.

“Reading anything good?” Shepard asked.

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Confession:  I like to think that after the Citadel party, if you choose the lively + calm sequence, the booby traps Garrus and Zaaed set up actually kill a couple of keepers when the Reapers take the Citadel. Or maybe this giant explosion just goes off randomly, sending glass shards flying everywhere, and shorts out the Catalyst for a bit. Just to piss it off. Microfilaments laid across the glass in a 5x5 grid. First line of defense in home security. Maybe a keeper wants to get in the hot tub? BIG MISTAKE!