[[Summary: A more light-hearted chapter of New Galaxy, Same Old Thirst that can be read as a standalone. After the emotional difficulty of discovering the turian ark may be lost, Kandros joins Ryder and the crew in a game of poker, resulting in yet another drunken proposition.
As always, I love to hear what you think! What’s going to happen next for me these two? Will they finally be more than just a hookup?
“And I fold before I owe Gil every credit I own and the Tempest.” Stepping back from the table, Wren Ryder stretched her shoulders and neck, rolling it back and forth to try and work the cricks out of it. If she could escape this game with some of her dignity intact, all the better; she already owed Gil 347 credits, and refused to give him one more. SAM could have helped, but she had no interest in cheating. Well, not today. Next game, though, if no one managed to dethrone their reigning poker king… Things might be different. “Anyone else joining me?” Her head was pleasantly buzzing with the free flowing drinks, and a snack was in order.
Jaal and Gil didn’t even bother to look up, absorbed in their cards. Liam shook his head, and Cora gave a curt gesture. Kandros, the newcomer to their ship, also shook his head, but Vetra stood up as well, echoing Ryder’s stretch. “I’m also out. Let’s go, Ryder.”
She didn’t follow Vetra right away, just needing a moment longer. “You good, Kandros? I can’t send the head of Nexus Security back completely broke.” The past few days had been difficult on everyone, from learning that the turian ark was possibly lost to pressing forward to Elaaden, knowing that nothing good could await them. Everyone sorely needed this game.
“If I can win a game against Sloane Kelly, I can beat anyone. Don’t worry, Ryder.” At least he was relaxed now, not exactly happy but filled with enough of the turian liquor Tupari to approximate it.
“You’re the boss. Well, I’m the boss, but you know what I mean.” Before heading down the stairs, Ryder clapped a hand to Kandros’ shoulder, resting it there a moment longer than friendship would dictate. He was a grown turian and he could handle himself. If he couldn’t, well… That was on him, and on Gil. She had to trust that not bankrupting everyone in the Andromeda galaxy wasn’t in her engineer’s best interests. Right now, if the cotton feeling of her mouth was any indication, she also needed to drink something that wasn’t beer. Time to swing by the galley as promised, see if she couldn’t find something to at least prevent tomorrow’s hangover from being too brutal.
In the Tempest’s galley, Vetra nibbled on a piece of some kind of dextro-based cracker, shooting Ryder a look laden with questions as she walked in.
“So… This is going well,” Ryder finally ventured, trying to down a large glass of water and look as guilt-free as possible.
“What part of ‘not discussing boys’ do you not understand, Ryder? Or ‘smuggler and security officer don’t mix.’” Taking another bite, Vetra clacked her mandibles in irritation, in as much as Ryder could judge turian facial expressions. “Don’t give me that look. Fine, it’s going great. I’m sure you’ll have lots of awful hybrid children together.”
Rolling her eyes so hard that she thought she could see through the ceiling of the Tempest, Ryder took another drink, silence pointed. After a tense few seconds, Ryder gave in and shrugged. “I’m going to go to bed.”
“Vetra, I will airlock you.” Vetra’s laughter broke the tension between them, following Ryder back to her quarters, where she was more than happy to sit back on her couch and simply unwind with an actual, honest-to-god paper book in hand. The jacket said it was a weighty history tome, but truth be told, it was a direct from the vid adaptation of Fleet and Flotilla. A girl had to have some guilty pleasures.
Just as the titular fleet (turian) and flotilla (quarian) were about to consummate their relationship in a flood of dextro-based fluids, there was a knock on Ryder’s door. Damn it. Always when she was getting to the good part, cheeks slightly flushed.
Dropping the book down on the couch, she stood and yelled out, “Pathfinder Ryder is a very busy woman, so this better be important.” If only she could get a sign on the door that told people to go away; if only she could get a moment of peace and quiet.
“Ryder.” Kandros stood on the other side of the door, swaying slightly. “Your skin looks great tonight.” An empty bottle of Tupari dangled between two claws, and he suddenly leaned against the doorframe, trying to look suave but only accomplishing looking like he couldn’t stand. “You wanna?” He made a gesture with his free hand, a twirl of the fingers that was somehow universal.
Sighing inwardly, Ryder plucked the bottle from Kandros’ fingers, putting it down on her small table. He reeked of the strange combination of what was definitely alcohol and whatever it was they put in the drink to make it appropriate for the turian GI system- something that smelled slightly chemical and astringent to her, though Vetra had said time and time again that it ‘smelled like heaven.’
“Kandros. I do. It’s not that I don’t.” She ran her hand through her hair nervously, trying to formulate a sentence when it seemed like words had left her. “But I also want to be more than that. That was the whole point of this mission. I don’t just want to be your booty call.”
“Sorry, human phrase. But I like you a lot, Kandros. Even when you’re like this. It’s still kind of cute.” Cute was not a word normally associated with a turian nearly seven feet tall with a penchant for power armor, and yet.
Silence greeted Ryder’s proclamation; it looked like Kandros was having trouble focusing on her, though he finally managed to get both eyes facing forward. His pupils, some part of her noticed, were slightly larger than normal. “Ryder, you’re good, for a human. A good person. I’m going to go to bed.” It wasn’t exactly a stirring declaration of feelings, but at least he hadn’t totally rebuffed her. He started to walk away, managing to trip over his own two feet and going sprawling across the floor, lying there and accepting his fate. His temporary quarters were on the upper deck, and there was no way Ryder would be able to drag him up the ladder to his own bed.
“Kandros, you better come in.” Helping him up (and nearly falling over in the process), Ryder led Kandros to her own bed, one side of it undisturbed. “You can sleep here tonight.”
“You change your mind?” He leered, if such a thing could be possible with that face.
“Not even a bit, buddy,” she answered with a grin. Damn it, but she really did like him. “But there’s no way you’re getting home like this. Just kick back and relax.” He didn’t say anything else, and while Ryder went to go fix herself another drink, he apparently passed out, fast asleep and neatly within his confined half of the bed. She shook her head again. He looked comfortable, at least.
With a shrug, Ryder called it a night, stripping down to her pajamas, knowing that she was safe from him watching. Crawling into bed, she was prepared to sleep with a carefully maintained set of inches between them, but in his sleep Kandros turned to face her, one arm stretching out and looping around her waist possessively. Okay. Well, this was okay. Tomorrow was a new day, after all.
‘Fleet and Flotilla’ (2185) is an award winning romantic disaster vid noted for it’s positive portrayal of turian- quarian relationships’
Winner of Best Film- Nos Astra Film festival- 2185 Official selection- Vancouver- 2185 Official selection- Illium- 2185 Official selection- Noveria- 2185 (nominated) Nebulae award winner- Yana’ Horem- Portrayal of Shalei- 2185 Nebulae award nominee- Laq-wi Ballen- Portrayal of Bellicus- 2185 Nebulae award nominee- Padok Tolan- Portrayal of Esheel- 2185
Behind every great love, there is a great story.
As a young quarian, Shalei (Yana’ Horem) embarks on her pilgrimage from the Migrant Fleet. Meanwhile half way across the galaxy a young turian called Bellicus (Laq’wi Ballen) takes his final steps in military training. Through a chain of remarkable events Shalei and her salarian friend, Esheel (Padok Tolan) are brought to the citadel. A chance meeting between the quarian and turian soon blossoms into a whirlwind romance. Yet what little time they have is cut short with news from the fleet of instability along the geth boarders, Shalei is ordered home early, news of full scale war between the quarian people and their creations reach the Citadel and Bellicus must choose whether to return to the Turian Militia or follow Shalei to the Flotilla…
“A fearless performance from Ballen,” - Eden Prime Network “The love story of this age,” - Thessia Empire News “Yana’ Horem debut is remarkable,” - Illium Galactic “Heart wrenchingly tragic, no matter how many hearts you have," -Cerberus Network "Bin Olar is a breath of fresh air in Volus cinema," - Future Content Corp
Wowza, what started as a simple movie poster kind of spiraled into a full blown story with a set of characters, a partial script and an ending. After playing Mass Effect 3: Citadel DLC for the 100th time, the scene with Tali when you’re watching Fleet and Flotilla really got me thinking- so I decided to make a poster, but apparently I became far too into it. Anyway, I made it quite quickly with a mixture of my friends PNG’s and my own, however most weren’t rendered all that well so it’s not perfect- and I also used Tali as Shalei, simply because I’m lazy and already had plenty of her, and lets be honest Tali would kill to be Shalei. Anyway, I had a lot of fun doing this!
Sleeper pods have small eezo cores that, when activated, suspend the occupant in a mass effect field. This effectively ‘cocoons’ the user in a 0G environment and eliminates all potential pressure points. No aching backs. No stiff necks. Melatonin is released into the capsule to help promote proper circadian rhythms to anyone who needs it.
Though the concept is very unsettling for most humans, it is actually designed for great comfort, and many who are able to adjust to the pods prefer them over beds.
Turians are the primary advocates of sleeper pods, and use them heavily throughout their fleet. Young turians are conditioned to them in basic training at the age of fifteen, and most find them very comfortable and easy to rest in. But despite their many advantages, most humans are extremely wary of them and few Alliance ships have adopted them.
In fact, they were never supposed to be on the Normandy. Due to a mix up in paperwork during her construction, the turian design for the crew deck was approved instead of the Alliance’s. By the time everyone realized the mistake, it was too late to rectify. The original crew of the SR-1 had strong objections to this foreign sleeping arrangement. Most adapted, but some, mainly due to claustrophobia, had to set up cots and get rack time in the cargo bay.
Joker, however, loves the sleeper pods. All pressure is taken off his joints, and he does not have to fear sleeping ‘wrong’ and breaking a bone in his sleep. Insomnia and restless nights have been a staple of his life before joining the crew of the Normandy – with the sleeper pods he sleeps better and sounder than he ever has in his life.
The cruel irony for Garrus, the only other crew member besides Joker who thinks the sleeper pods are a good thing, is that they’re sized for humans and he can’t fit.
The Turians are a very regulated and military race, with emphasis placed on good citizenship and service(Generally Military, and Civic Duty specifically Police or Government). The Turian Hierarchy has the heaviest martial responsibility within the Council as it has actually acquired several Dreadnought slots from the Asari(a mutual defense pact limits the number of each type of ship each race is allowed to create).
The Turians while not a true meritocracy are the closest to one that we see within the Mass Effect universe they follow a rather ridged rank and promotion system yet interestingly enough superiours are as punished for failures as subordinates because the superiors should have known better, or prepared their subordinates better.
Let's go with sending letters (or texts!) for Jane/Garrus, please!
To: Garrus Vakarian
From: Lt. Cmdr. Jane Shepard
this message will even get through, like the others I’ve tried to send since I’ve
been here. Despite my requests, the Alliance still blocks my extranet access (still
sticking to that whole stripped of my command and being thrown in the brig
thing, I guess), but I thought I’d try anyway, on the off-chance it might work.
And you know me. I’m always about taking whatever odds I can, even if they’re
you are doing alright out there. Can’t believe it’s been six months since I
dropped you off on the Citadel and I went back to Earth. Talks with the
Admirals at this Defense Committee have gone just as expected, either
questioning my motives or my sanity. If not for Anderson and Hackett, I doubt
they would be wasting their time and would have court-marshaled and sentenced me immediately.
Though I noticed they seemed less skeptical about the Reapers last time we met and
more on edge, but they wouldn’t tell me anything concrete. It makes me wonder
what’s going on. Damn it, it’s driving me crazy not being in the loop on
not trying to talk to the Admirals, I’m trying to keep myself from going
stir-crazy best I can. Doing exercises, occasionally being allowed a “supervised”
walk around the grounds or to the gym off-hours, picking up what scraps of
information I can. There’s a marine named Vega who’s been assigned as my guard
here in the brig. He doesn’t know much of what’s going on either, but it’s nice
to just be able to talk to someone who isn’t on this Defense Committee. Though
I guess it could be worse. At least they’ve given me warm food and I have a
soft bed to return to at night. And my room has this huge window that gives me
a nice view of the mountains in the distance. But it doesn’t beat the view of
the stars from the Normandy’s Observation Deck.
your efforts going? Anderson didn’t have any info on you last I saw him. Were
you able to meet with Sparatus or was it a dead end like it usually is with
the Council? Have you heard from any of the Normandy crew? And your family? How
are your dad and your sister? How have your mom’s treatments gone? I know you were
reluctant to accept my help in paying for treatments, but I don’t regret
it, not when it’s so important to you and your family.
you, big guy. So much.
care of yourself out there. I hope we’ll get to see each other again soon.
Unable to connect to the extranet. Attempt to deliver message to recipient
failed. Message returned to sender Fri, 21 Sep 2186 19:34:56.*
To: Lt. Cmdr. Jane Shepard
From: Garrus Vakarian
I’m sure this message
will just bounce back like the others I’ve sent, but what is it you humans say?
Fourth time’s the charm? I think that’s right… Suppose it was too much to expect
the Alliance would let you have free reign and access to the extranet.
I hope you are doing
okay. I can only imagine how hard it must be for you to be grounded like this for
six months with the Reapers on the way. I know you said this was for the best,
and you know I respected your decision…I wish I could be there for you.
I’ve been trying to do
the best I can, yelling loud enough about the Reapers until someone actually
listens. Sparatus was a dead end (like we knew it would be). After that, I knew I couldn’t just try to talk to the Primarch or anyone in the
hierarchy without some type of political clout. So I went to the only person I could.
I know you’re probably
wondering why, when I told you before we didn’t see eye to eye on a lot, but he
has heavy pull in the government and is friends with Primarch Fedorian. I
thought he might call me crazy, some of the things I was telling him about the
Reapers, the Collectors, Vigil (I might’ve if I hadn’t seen it myself), but he saw the
same connections we did. He took it to the Primarch and after a lot of pushing,
it got me a token task force and Reaper Advisor title. I can’t give specifics, but I’m hoping our efforts have bought the turian
fleet time. Now we’re forced to wait for the Reapers’ next move, but I guess we’ve
been doing that for awhile, right? I’ve been hearing rumblings about me being
sent someplace in the cluster to do some more “Reaper advisoring;“ just
waiting for an official order.
Even though it’s been
busy, it’s been good to be back on Palaven. To see my father, and Sol. Things
were still a little tense between us (she nearly chewed my head off when I
told her where I got the scars), but they’ve gotten better. I know you
might be wondering about Mom. She…didn’t make it. In the end, the treatments
still weren’t ’enough. They did warn us they were in the experimental stage, not a
guarantee. Still, I appreciate you helping to pay after you heard the fees couldn’t be waived for Mom in time. You know I
was hesitant to take your offer, but I’m glad you did. It means a lot.
Haven’t been in touch
with the crew outside of a message from Liara and message from Mordin. Hard to
say that I don’t miss my time on the Normandy and the people on it. Or that it
hasn’t been hard not being with you.
I…miss you, Jane. A
Take care of yourself.
If I know you, you’ll find a way to be set free and we’ll see each other again
Attempt to deliver message to recipient failed. Message returned to sender Sat,
22 Sep 2186 22:12:43.*
SEARCH: Palaven history
SEARCH: Palaven turian myths
SEARCH: turian myths/ERASED/religions
SEARCH: turian prayers for safe passage
SEARCH: turian spirits
SEARCH: different types of turian spirits
SEARCH: turian customs meeting in-laws
Spectre requisition 031-A: Black Widow I sniper rifle
Catalog order C117178: dextro-amino chocolate bar variety pack
Catalog order L1-04-527: human dress, petite size medium (STYLE TYPE: red/low-cut/knee-length/sleeveless)
Catalog order F412-001: Turian Fleet design special edition poker cards, dealer’s collection
Catalog order H-010133: gift wrap, blue plaid design
“I’ve never really done this before. I hope I’m - doing it right. And I hope it isn’t offensive for a human to do this. [throat clearing] Spirits of Palaven, of home, of family, of journeys. May you give his family safety and strength. May you help him feel courage in these uncertain times, no matter what happens. [coughs] I don’t know. Just… Look out for him, and for them, okay?”
Gameplay and Story in Conflict (Mass Effect 3 silliness)
“I don’t want to be disrespectful, Commander…”
Shepard snorted. “Moreau, when did that become a concern for you?”
“It’s just… I thought we had a priority mission at Menae. What are we doing way out here?”
“I’m looking for something.”
“What?” Joker asked, waiting to be let in on Shepard’s latest brilliant plan.
“I don’t know yet.”
“I said, I don’t know yet. A lost Turian battle fleet? An inspiring historical relic? A rare Prothean artifact that will help us build the Crucible? It could be anything.”
“I… so where are we going to find this thing?”
Shepard gave a maddening shrug. “Probably on one of the planets in the system? If not there, out in space somewhere? Asteroid fields are good.”
“So… are you telling me that you plan to literally look under every rock in the galaxy to see if you can find something that will help us defeat the Reapers?”
Shepard glared down at Joker. “Do you have a problem with that?”
“No, sir.” Since the Reaper attack on Earth, Shepard’s legendary temper seemed to have grown worse. But Joker couldn’t resist asking, “Isn’t the Primarch on Menae under heavy Reaper attack? Don’t you think we should go get him?”
Another maddening shrug. “I’m sure he’ll be fine.”
Shepard smirked maddeningly when a scan of the lone asteroid in the system turned up the Turian 79th Flotilla, which had inexplicably decided to hang out there until the Normandy showed up and pointed out there was a war on, at which point they all escaped the system despite the heavy Reaper presence.
“Now do we head for Menae?” Joker asked, unhappy to realize how plaintive he sounded.
“Not quite yet,” Shepard answered slowly, seeming to relish each word. “There might be something in the Castellus system we could use.”