“The frigate will deposit you on the surface of a planet in the Traverse, you will be given your orders once there. The mission is highly classified. Needless to say, do not come back unless you succeed.”
The voice of the officer briefing the N6 team was loud and clear. Data of locations were flickering on the semi-transparent screen that was placed in the middle of the room. Every single soldier was focused on it, and the dark, piercing eyes of Commander Shepard, Alliance Marine, were no exception. She brought up her omni tool to add a couple of notes of relevance, then stood again at attention as the veteran officer finished his debriefing.
“You are the best the Alliance has. Make us proud. Dismissed.”
Walking out of the comm room, Shepard suddenly felt a monstrous arm circling her shoulders, squeezing her and lifting her a foot above the ground, just before the booming voice of young Lieutenant Edwards sounded in her ears. “Hey Shepard! This mission sounds like a ton and a half of fun to me! What do you think?”
Edwards was the youngest in the N6 team, he was a walking talking wardrobe, with bulging muscles and a sincere smile. His short blond hair made his face look like an angel, but his favourite sport was to blow stuff up with a custom designed grenade launcher that never left his side.
Commander Shepard had made it a point never to develop personal relationships with her fellow soldiers, well, she had made it a point not to develop any sort of relationship with anyone after the massacre on Mindoir, but somehow this green boy had found a little crack in her heart and had taken a nice warm spot inside it. The second she had laid eyes on him she had somehow seen in him the little brother she had never had, the chance taken away from her by Batarian slavers. They landed on Mindoir and killed her father, her pregnant mother, and even her beloved dog. She was perfectly conscious that liking him was a mistake and she didn’t approve of herself getting ‘soft’, but she just couldn’t help it. Of course she had never let anyone in on this little secret of hers and tried to keep the interaction with Edwards as professional as possible.
Edwards on the other hand…
The young LT couldn’t believe that he had been invited to the N7 program and since the very first day had given all of himself in order to succeed. He was the only one who graduated from his N5 Course and as soon as he had arrived to his N6 destination he had developed a pure adoration for Shepard. He didn’t even care that his other squad mates called him ‘Shepard’s puppy’ behind his back. Regardless, it was clear they all liked him and he had quickly become the mascot of the team. Like a lot of young people he just listened to his heart and his guts. And they both told him that Shepard was indeed the one to follow.
“Edwards. Please don’t crack any of my bones before we even set out for this operation…?” The Commander couldn’t help a small smile, dragged by the sincere enthusiasm of the young man.
He put her back down, faced her, put both of his hands on her shoulders and stared squarely into her eyes, a huge grin lighting his face. “I’ve been itching for a good fight for a week now. I hope there’s lots and lots of bastards that I can blow up.”
Shepard couldn’t stop a chuckle. This guy was the only person alive who could actually achieve that. “Patience, young soldier. Patience. You’ll get your chance. Now let’s get ready.”
The planet, thankfully, did not have any warnings for hazardous conditions and the small team could easily touch down and get their bearings as the frigate took off and left.
Moving quickly, in patterns known and used a hundred times over, the squad started off on the path to their target. The intel started coming in through their comms, the artificial voice instructing them without inflection.
“Target type: industrial facility. Enemy count: unknown. Enemy weaponry: unknown, possible heavy artillery and/or armed turrets expected. Mission: no prisoners. Chosen Squad Leader: Commander Shepard.”
The Commander unconsciously straightened her shoulders at that last piece of information and proceeded surely to the head of the group. She opened a comm line: “All right. We all know the drill. I want this thing to go smooth and by the numbers. Nobody plays heroics. Keep your eyes open and let’s try to be home in time for chow.” A low, general snicker was the approval she was looking for.
The facility was huge, covering the horizon with towers of old, tarnished metal, stark and looming in the dim light of the planet’s atmosphere. There were indeed automated security turrets that rained lead on the Marines as much as they could. After placing a couple of team mates strategically and setting up the rocket launchers, they took them out and moved on. The squad made its way in without too much trouble, moving swiftly, perfectly alert. Once inside they split into two units of ten men each that proceeded on parallel lines, sweeping the perimeter systematically, room after room.
After a while Shepard gave the order to stop. “I don’t like this. It’s impossible that we haven’t encountered a living soul this far in. They are drawing us into some sort of ambush or trap, I have no doubts.”
Edwards was squatting next to her. Strong as a bull, his neck as thick as Shepard’s thigh, the Lieutenant was generally overeager for a fight and was getting visibly frustrated at this ghost hunt. “I say let’s start gassing the rooms as soon as we walk in, see if they can stand it or if they finally pop out and start acting like fighters!”
“Patience, Edwards.” The Commander was trying to think of an easier way to engage the enemy. “This is not working.” She spoke in the comm. “I want Squad Beta to exit the facility through the emergency stairs and proceed to the next area using the outside walkways. Squad Alpha will proceed from the inside as planned. Keep this comm line open, scrambling protocol 213.”
The metallic voice of Cosway came in from the other end. “Roger that, Squad Leader. Proceeding now as ordered.”
Shepard started her unit down the dirty floor of what seemed to be an assembly line room, now abandoned and degrading fast. A big double door was in front of them once they reached the far wall. Locked.
“And here we go. Donovan, place six charges on the hinges, one on the central lock and blast our way in. No sense trying to be stealthy when they are obviously waiting for us. Let’s make a proper entrance.” The tall, lean soldier moved quickly to obey and then took cover before casually clicking the detonator.
The controlled explosion made the heavy doors creak and fall, blowing up a cloud of dust, the stillness of the scene lasted but a second, then someone shouted an order in the distance and the bullets started flying.
The Commander ran to take cover behind a piece of machinery and started assessing the number of enemies. Judging by the fire rate there were a lot. They were probably outnumbered four or five to one. Good odds for a team of their calibre, but not the best. She loaded her custom Carnifex and belly to the floor she snaked her way ever closer, ignoring the whistles of the bullets just above her head. Not a few paces from her first hiding place, she heard the familiar sound of a portable rocket launcher being charged. She quickly rose to her feet and sprinted to take cover behind the wall. She watched with wide eyes as the machinery that had provided her with cover just a few seconds earlier was blown to a million pieces. “Shit. Heavy artillery! I repeat, heavy artillery on the field!”
A voice came in from Squad Beta. “Commander, we’ll be late to the party! We’re being held by a group of flying security drones!” A second of silence… “What the hell is that…? Take cover! Take cover!” Explosions galore. “They’re hitting us hard! They have a gunship in the air! They have a gunship in the air!”
Shepard barked in the comm. “Make your way back into the facility, don’t get pinned there!”
As her squad mates took position, choosing the best spots in the huge space that opened beyond the blasted doors, she darted out of cover and made her way into the next room, she knew she had to keep moving to avoid being targeted by the enemy troopers manning the rocket launcher. She managed to take down a few of the bastards and noticed they were Batarians. Her pupils widened. It was always a pleasure for her to obliterate those sons of bitches out of existence. Her day took a turn for the better just for that, a grin spread on her face as she dived behind a metal crate. She could see Edwards out of the corner of her eyes, his grenade launcher chugging out parcels of death, decimating the enemy forces by the second. She moved quickly in and out of cover to shoot and kill. The hiss of another rocket flew by, the weapon hitting the wall at her back, the explosion making her ears ring and the blast projecting her a few yards away, she rolled to soften the fall, got to her feet and took aim to eliminate the fucker that had just attempted to ruin her day.
Before she had the time to align her shot and press the trigger, in a horrified flash she saw another rocket flying, this time the trajectory was leading it to Edwards. That stupid oaf. Why didn’t he ever fire from cover?! She could only stand and watch, time stretching, as she realized he wouldn’t be able to avoid the impact.
The missile exploded, Edward’s body went flying through the air and smashed against a wall behind him, sliding down on the half destroyed bricks like a ragdoll. Shepard placed a bullet between the eyes of the Batarian that had just hit her comrade, unfortunately a second too late. She ran to him, laying down some cover fire, she grabbed his arm and started dragging his dead weight to a spot where he couldn’t be mauled by more enemy fire. Once there she assessed the injury. She mentally shook her head, making sure her pain didn’t show on her face. Edwards looked at her through hazy eyes. “Hey Shepard. I guess you were right. It pays to duck.” He tried to laugh, a spurt of blood coming out of his mouth. “How bad is it?”
The Commander looked at his torso, his armor blasted to pieces, some embedded deeply into his chest, blood flowing slowly but surely. She got out some medi gel and applied it liberally wherever she could, injecting some of it directly into his deeper wounds for good measure. She gave him a half smile. “I don’t know, Edwards. You know I’m not a fucking Medic.”
Cosway suddenly spoke in her comm. “We took down the gunship, Commander. We got casualties though. We’re down to six men. We’re making our way back into the facility, we’ll be coming up behind the enemy position, ETA 120 seconds.”
She turned away to reply, making sure her voice was low enough not to be heard. “Got it, LT. We’ll keep them busy from this side. And Cosway… they got Edwards. Let’s make ‘em pay.” Shepard’s voice was not quavering even under the worst stress, a necessity and a requirement in the N7 program, but her hate was just oozing through, unmistakeably. She squatted and stared directly into the eyes of the young soldier lying in front of her, seeing the life slowly abandoning him, the damage too devastating for him to recover. She took his hand in a tight grip and waited for the inevitable end.
“Shepard. It was my honour to fight at your side. I just regret not getting to wear my N7 patch together with you, you son of a gun. Wear it proudly.”
“I will, Thomas.” The first and only time she ever called him by his given name.
She felt his arm go limp and let go of his hand. She raised her fingers to his face and closed his eyes. Then she got her SMG out and unleashed Hell.
It was over in a few minutes, Squad Beta flanking the Batarians and finally easily picking them off from behind. Shepard found herself standing on the grimy, dusty floor, a thin line of smoke coming out of the mouth of her gun, sweat running down her face and her neck. Cosway approached her.
“Seven dead: Stone, Clerk, Van Diemen, Herrera, Cox, Hausen… and Edwards. Two injured: Sanchez got just a flesh wound, but Deveraux needs evac. The facility is secured, all enemies are down. Apparently they were running a rather profitable weapon smuggling ring from here. We found weapon and ammo crates all over the place. Mainly Alliance. I don’t know how they could get their hands on them. I guess it’ll be a job for someone else to find out.”
“Good. Before we go, I want you to take the Batarians’ eyes and scatter them outside. Do not leave a single one behind, LT.”
“… Sir…?” A look of puzzlement crossed Cosway’s face.
She gave him a look that could have melted duranium. “I’m still the commanding Officer of this mission. And you have your orders.”
The hot water running down her back was so pleasant she never wanted to move again. She let it slide on her skin, allowing her muscles to release the tension and the adrenaline, paying little to no attention to the banter of her comrades in the communal restrooms of the small ship.
They had gotten back to the frigate in silence. The mission had been successful of course, but the price had been high, almost half the squad dead. The post-mission briefing had been quick and to the point. At the end of it, Major Steele, the officer in charge of the whole Operation, had literally thrown a badge to each of them, commenting with a grin on his face: “Congratulations. You are now the Elite of the Elite.” The logo on it said ‘N7’, a small blood red triangle on the corner of it.
She had made it. After being invited to the program, months earlier, she had dedicated every waking moment to achieving this goal. Sleepless nights, endless training, blood, sweat, tears, days that seemed like weeks, weeks that seemed like months, mission after mission, class after class, she had climbed her way through the brutal N7 ladder without ever looking back, without ever wavering. And now… Now she didn’t want to think about anything.
She soaped herself up and let the water wash it away. Then she finally noticed someone talking to her.
“Hey, Shepard. I was saying: we’re getting on the next transport to Omega. We’re going to take advantage of our days of leave to celebrate properly, with just the right amount of spice... you know what I mean, uh?” He winked, uselessly trying to make an especially sexy thing of it, with ridiculous results. “Wanna tag along?” Donovan was a man of few words on the battlefield, but when he was not fighting he definitely became the most chatty of them. He seemed to be in a great mood.
She considered the offer. Why not? She suddenly felt the almost physical need to get out of this funk and back into her comfortably roguish, care-for-nothing skin. “Yeah. I’ll be there. I can use some good ol’ entertainment.”
“That’s the spirit! We leave at 20:00 hours.”
Omega was a station like no other. Built around a particularly rich asteroid, it had outgrown it and developed beyond any expectations. Now the mines were almost depleted, but the business was still thriving. Mostly illegal. It was a port for people that were generally up to no good. The perfect place for a bunch of soldiers on shore leave, looking for booze, hookers and gambling.
The party of twelve went through the local customs by showing the hardly earned pay on the credit chits they had come here to spend, and they headed in a beeline for Afterlife.
It was THE Club.
The music was booming in a heavy beat, exotic Asari dancers proudly displayed at every corner, on top of the bar, in private booths, on the dance floor, artistically vaulting around metal poles, gracing the lap of this or that patron with enough money to afford the private attention, carrying trays of drinks to tables where high stakes Skillian 5 was being played.
Shepard felt immediately at home, a grin on her face and a spark in her eye, she went to the bar and ordered a drink for the entire squad. They cheered and toasted to the fallen. The only sombre drink they would have that night.
Being the loner that she was, the Commander parted from them shortly after and headed for a table, in the mood to win some credits from fat Volus and proud Turians. She found a seat and chipped in. Within the hour half the table was busted and her pile of credits was a sight to be seen. Her poker face was legendary for a reason, after all. She motioned to an Asari worker to come and collect her winnings. “Gentlemen, it’s been a pleasure, but now my heart longs for a more… simple entertainment.”
The voice of the Turian was not friendly and not happy. “You cannot go now. You owe us the chance to win our money back.”
She stared at him blankly. “The object of the game is to win money from your opponent. If you want fair chances you should play golf.”
The Turian now looked positively insulted. “I don’t know what this ‘golf’ is and I do not care. You will sit down and keep playing, human.”
‘Bad move.’ Shepard thought idly. She took two quick steps and her hand was around the Turian’s neck, lifting him from his chair effortlessly, slamming him to the floor and pinning him there. The Volus froze, obviously conscious of his powerlessness in all this. “I only take orders from my superiors, and I don’t see any insignia on you that I should respect, Turian. On a side note, you shouldn’t try to bully someone who can kick your ass so easily.” She let him go, delighting in the coughing sounds he let out, she straightened up and walked away.
Somehow her comfortable couch did not feel so comfortable tonight. Aria T’Loak, Queen of Omega, found herself shifting on it restlessly. It was a boring, boring night. No action, no problems, no entertainment. She quickly debated heading down to the mine shafts to blast a few smugglers into oblivion just for the kicks, then she decided she wasn’t in the mood. She got up and walked to the spot that allowed her a perfect view down to her nightclub, resting her weight on her forearms on the parapet as her eyes swept the scene.
A sudden movement caught her attention. Her gaze immediately zeroed in to where a small commotion was taking place and she saw a young human, impossibly fast, grab a Turian and half strangle him on the floor beside a Skillian 5 table. She was wearing the military uniform of the Alliance, her body moving with the grace of a big cat, lean and powerful. Aria’s face opened in a smirk of its own volition. It was not an uncommon thing to witness a brawl among card players, but it was usually a messy business, with people trading drunken punches and swinging wildly at each other in a grotesque fashion. Nothing even remotely close to the display of pure prowess and focus that this human was showcasing. She got a vibe deep in her guts that was the sure herald of delicious things to come. It was her sixth sense, and it never failed her. She kept her eyes on the human to see what she would do next.
Feeling in the mood for some one on one action, the Commander thought it was about time to find herself a dance partner and enjoy the music, and then see what would come of it. On the way to the dance floor Shepard passed by the bar for another drink. That’s when she felt someone watching her. As if guided by an invisible hand, she turned around and looked up to see an Asari staring from an upper floor. They held each other’s eyes for an eternity, then the soldier decided to find out who she was. She caught the attention of one of the bartenders and asked casually: “Who’s the Asari up there?”
A shadow crossed the features of the Salarian, he quickly glanced around and replied in a quick whisper: “You don’t want to ask that. You don’t want to know that. The only thing you need to know is that she is the self-appointed Queen of Omega and nobody, -nobody- messes with her. Stay well clear, human. Enjoy your time here and go, take my advice. It’s not healthy to deal with her.”
Her curiosity even more piqued, she grabbed her drink and headed up the stairs that led to what looked like a private space that overlooked the entire Club.
A bodyguard stepped in front of her. “Where do you think you’re going, human?”
She sported her most innocent smile. “Upstairs.”
“Funny. Nobody goes upstairs unless Aria says so.”
‘Aria. Good to know.’ Shepard thought. “Very well.” Never one to give up at the first try, but wise enough to know when to retire and regroup, she turned around to go back and think of a better strategy to get to where she wanted to be.
That’s when she felt the weirdest sensation. Something… No: some-one- was worming through her thoughts, she felt a sudden vertigo and she realized a consciousness other than hers was inside her brain. She instinctively protected herself by throwing up a barrier around the unwanted presence, every sense tingling, alert. The glass fell from her hands, crashing on the steps, she grabbed the handrail next to her in order not to fall as she struggled to keep this invader at bay, the probing getting stronger by the second, a painful, stabbing headache coursing through her skull now.
Then just like it came, it was gone.
The headache still pounding, she took a moment to regain her balance. She heard the voice of the bodyguard behind her. “Yes, Aria. Right away.” His hand tugged at her elbow and made her turn around to face him. “Aria wants to see you, human.” She shook her arm free and carefully placing one foot in front of the other she started heading up the few steps that led to where this infamous Queen of Omega was. She tried to stand up as straight as possible, considering the blinding pain behind her eyes.
The Asari got up from the plush couch she was sitting on and walked towards Shepard in a sure swag that displayed a rightfully earned arrogance. She stopped at arm’s length and appraised the young Commander from head to toe and back. Her eyes stopped on the N7 insignia on her chest, silently evaluating all that it meant.
Then she spoke to her.
“You seem to be having a good time in my club, human.” Her voice was sure, sexy, tinged with a hint of underlying command. Her face was as beautiful as an Asari could be, but her features betrayed an inner strength that could only come from decades of survival against all odds. Shepard felt immediately drawn to her. She wore black pants that left nothing to the imagination, practically painted on her flawless, muscular legs and ass, and a short white leather jacket with a high collar proudly propped up around her neck.
“Your establishment is nothing short of magnificent, Aria.” The Commander was never shy on the compliments where they were due.
An ironic smile spread on the lips of the Asari. “A flatterer. How lovely.” Aria slowly started pacing around Shepard, much like a shark circling its prey. “You know my name already. If you don’t want me to keep calling you ‘human’ you better introduce yourself.”
“I am Commander Shepard, Systems Alliance.”
“Commander Shepard, nobody tries to climb those stairs without an invitation. What made you think it would be a smart thing to do?”
“The way you were staring at me when I was down at the bar.” The soldier’s head was following Aria all the way around until she came back to face her.
“Straight to the point. I like you more and more, Shepard. Come sit with me. It looks like I made you spill your drink. Anto, get the Commander a drink, now.” The bodyguard sprinted down the stairs as if propelled by a rocket.
They sat on the big couch, Shepard easing herself down so that her head was actually resting on the back of it, the pain not wanting to leave. “Wait… -You- made me spill my drink?” The realization dawned on her. “It was -you- in my head. I should have known. What do you Asari call it? A ‘meld’, isn’t it? That wasn’t very nice of you, Aria.” She tried giving the Asari a scolding look, not really managing to achieve it, courtesy of the shooting pain in her head. “You gave me a fucking headache.”
Aria positively grinned. “Oh, you poor little thing. Here, let me help you…”
Shepard felt the invading presence again, this time it did not try to probe her mind though, it felt more like being immersed in a pleasant warm bath of light, soothing, calming, she felt the pain dissipate as easily as it had settled in. Then the presence was gone.
The Commander was curious. “Why did you get inside my head?”
“I was intrigued. I wanted to find out if your trying to reach me was due to arrogance or stupidity.”
A spark flickered deep inside Aria’s eyes. “I only ever deal with stupid people by way of bullets... Do you see bullet holes in your body?” The Asari gave her an appreciative look and nonchalantly went on. “I was surprised to find such a strenuous resistance when I entered your mind. Have you melded with Asari before?”
“Never. I am barely aware of your species’ practice. I guess I acted on instinct.”
“Your instincts are quite powerful. You’re the only human I couldn’t break, and even among Asari I don’t usually have any problems getting what I want. You were the cause of your own headache, by the way. If you don’t resist, the meld cannot hurt you.”
Anto was back with a scantily clad Asari worker carrying a tray with two drinks, he stopped on the stairs and let the girl go up to deliver the glasses. As soon as she had deposited them she was turning to go away, but Aria stopped her. “Sila. Wait a moment.” The waitress stood still. The Queen turned to Shepard. “So why are you here, Commander?”
“Anything in particular?”
“Coming out of the other side of a very dark, deadly tunnel, to find myself among the Elite of the Elite.” She looked down at her N7 patch and then she regaled Aria with a lop sided grin.
‘How adorable’ the Asari thought, genuinely entertained. “Well well. Then you deserve a real treat, don’t you?”
Shepard was enjoying this game a bit too much, but she found it impossible to resist and played along. Her voice dropped to a huskier tone, her eyes fixed on Aria’s. “I do love treats.”
Aria’s voice dropped as well as she addressed the young Asari waitress. “Sila, why don’t you treat the Commander?”
Sila put down the tray and approached the human slowly, her hips swaying, her head tilting ever so slightly, appraising her thoroughly. At the snap of Aria’s fingers the music started coming through more loudly. The young Asari settled just above Shepard’s lap and started dancing to the booming, heady rhythm, brushing lightly on her thighs, her arms coming around her shoulders, sliding, her hands caressing the back of her neck softly, raising goose bumps. Shepard felt a burning desire stir deeply inside of herself and forced her own hands to stay still, even though the only thing they wanted to do was to grab the elegant dancer. She heard Aria’s voice as if from a distance, entranced by the sensual movements of the beautiful Asari hovering just above her. “The rules are: she can touch you, you cannot touch her, Shepard. Don’t forget it or I’ll take your treat away.” There was a definite hint of amusement in the Queen’s voice. The Commander didn’t care. She could play Aria’s game. She loved to play it, actually.
The dancer let her hands stroke the human’s arms, her torso, her shoulders, teasingly. Then she lowered herself firmly on her thighs, straddling her, grinding herself on Shepard shamelessly, eliciting a growl of approval from the Commander, her eyes transfixed, pupils wide with arousal. Sila stopped suddenly, she stood up, she kneeled down and gently put her palms on the human’s knees, slowly opening her legs. She settled between them. She started unzipping Shepard’s pants and pulled them and her underwear down in one smooth move, just enough to expose her sex and allow herself access to it. Out of the corner of her mind the human felt Aria’s presence sliding into her consciousness again, she found she could recognize her now. She did not feel her probing for anything, what she felt instead was a wave of desire crashing and then melting into her own, like a tide of water currents circling each other, swirling together and then bleeding into each other. It was so exciting it was blinding, they were suddenly dancing, caressing each other’s mind sensually with shared arousal. She had to exert all of her discipline to control herself, her instinct to physically act so strong. Aria could feel it through the meld and instead of helping Shepard toning it down, she was enticing her, tempting her, delighting in how the Commander was struggling, and at the same time sending a mute message of admiration for the human’s self control.
Aria was very satisfied with herself. She congratulated herself for having found such a delectable, unexpected distraction on this very dull evening at the club. She was positively beaming in the sensations the Commander was liberally sharing with her, she was enjoying teasing the human mercilessly, pleasantly surprised at just how strong her consciousness was. In her mind she wasn’t just a spectator, she had decided to open up to the Commander as well, letting her feel how aroused she herself was. She had always liked to watch. Not being part of the action gave her the control on the scene she always craved for.
Shepard was reclining lazily on the couch now, sprawled in pure bliss. She felt Sila’s warm breath between her legs and as her blue lips closed on her folds she inhaled sharply, awash in the heavenly sensation. It passed through the meld and hit Aria as an electric shock, the Asari was not expecting such a powerful reaction and got stunned for a moment, lifted and dragged by the Commander’s intense pleasure, she lost the grip on the meld and was breathlessly swung by the sheer force of Shepard’s passion. Sila licked the Commander thoroughly all along her slit, wet and ready, then she concentrated on that small ball of nerves that drove low grunts of delight out of the human’s throat. Aria was blown away by the mirrored sensations she was feeling between her own legs, her eyes two pools of swirling blackness fixed on the action taking place just next to her, a look of undiluted hunger on her face, she got a grip back on the meld somehow and encircled Shepard with a twister of her own lust. The Commander’s fists were closed so tightly that her nails were biting into the flesh of her palms. As Sila was sucking, kissing, lapping her in such a smooth, perfect rhythm, her hips started rocking to meet that hot mouth that was pleasuring her so divinely. She felt the start of a powerful orgasm building up inside her. Aria was feeding on the incredible level of lasciviousness the Commander was so generously sending her way. Now back in full control, she guided Shepard all the way to the edge, mentally forcing her to stay there, just on the brink, hovering for what seemed like forever, until it was almost painful. Almost. The Queen was revelling in that quivering feeling of pure sexual ache, and only when she felt they both couldn’t take it anymore, she gave the human that small final push that sent her into another dimension, her inner muscles clenching and spasming in such fireworks of raw pleasure. Her own muscles reacted immediately, she got rocked by her own orgasm, letting go of the tight control for a few seconds that felt like an eternity, engulfed by wave after wave of ecstasy.
They slowly came down from their release, together. Their minds trading soothing caresses. Much to Aria’s surprise, she did not hold back. She was in the habit of truncating the meld as soon as she had come. This time she found herself happy to stay a bit longer and allow this young Commander to share pleasantries, after all this human had proven herself to be quite exceptional already. The Queen hadn’t been so thoroughly involved in a sex meld in some time. Let alone lose control of it in the middle of it, even for just a few moments. She decided to make Shepard part of what she was thinking, she didn’t even know why.
‘That was… most pleasurable, Commander.’
Shepard was surprised that they could exchange words, the Asari having been completely silent throughout the joining. She quickly adapted, unfazed. ‘As I said earlier, nothing short of magnificent.’
Aria allowed herself a deep, throaty laugh. Anto turned around for the fraction of a second, startled at the fairly unfamiliar sound.
“You can go, Sila.”
Hearing Aria’s voice both in her head and in the physical world was a bit strange, but by now nothing out of the ordinary, Shepard considered.
The young dancer got to her feet. She pulled the human’s pants up and made sure to zip them back as they were. She then cleaned her lips, licking them thoroughly and giving the Commander a sensual smile of appreciation before turning, picking up the tray and making her way downstairs.
Shepard was sure she must have a rather silly grin on her face, even though she hoped it wasn’t too silly. She felt Aria move to sit closer to her, their thighs grazing, then the Asari’s hand was on her chin and turning her face towards hers, and before she could even blink, the Queen’s lips closed on hers in an impossibly soft kiss. In a handful of seconds they opened up to deepen it naturally, their tongues stroking each other in hot, slow movements. Shepard murmured in Aria’s mouth in sheer luxury. “Mmmmhhhh.” She felt the Asari’s lips curl in a smile just before she spoke in her mind. ‘Don’t get carried away, Commander. This is just my way to thank you for a pleasant evening.’
The human found her own inner voice and replied. ‘No. Thank -you-, Queen of Omega. I am deeply honoured by your… treat.’ This time it was Shepard’s lips that smiled.
Their tongues revelled in a sensual dance a bit longer before they slowly separated. The human felt Aria retreating from the meld, leaving behind one last, lingering caress.
“I believe it’s time for you to go now, Commander.”
Shepard let out a low, long sigh, then she picked herself up from the couch and started walking away. She felt Aria’s gaze on her back and stopped just before the steps. She turned around and exchanged a long glance with the Asari.
Aria was stunned at the intensity of the look in the young human’s eyes. She realized in a moment of perfect lucidity: ‘There’s something about this one. But what?’ She nodded her goodbye at the soldier, who nodded right back and turned around to disappear down the steps.
As she was making her way down, the Commander suddenly felt a strong hand grab her arm and found herself looking at a big Batarian bodyguard. “I’m in a good mood, Batarian. Don’t try to spoil it.”
“I haven’t heard Aria laugh in a long time, human. How the Hell did you do that?”
Shepard let a lop sided grin grace her androgynous face. “You ask her.” And on that note, she was gone.
“Hey, Shepard! Where were you hiding? We’ve been looking for you!” Donovan was yelling, evidently drunk, his eyes half closed, his movements out of control, his voice slurring.
“Why were you looking for me?”
“We wanna pool together and get a… personal dancer…” There was the attempt at a wink again. The alcohol did not make it any more successful.
“Thanks guys, but I’ve had my share of Asari for tonight. Have fun.”
“Aw! Spoilsport!” Donovan was lamenting as Jameson was slowly dragging him away towards the private booths.
Shepard shook her head and headed for the bar. She sat on a stool and ordered a drink. As it was served to her she motioned to pay and was stopped by a quick blue hand. She raised her eyes to meet with Sila’s, who was smiling at her. “Everything you want is on the house, Commander. Anything, anytime. Courtesy of Aria, of course.” Shepard forced herself not to look up at the balcony where she was sure she would have seen the Queen looking down.
“Thank her for me, Sila. And thank you too. You were just perfect.”
“It was my pleasure, Commander. I can assure you.” Now -that- was a wink, the soldier thought with a bit of amusement. The waitress elegantly walked away, a sexy swing in her step.
Shepard took a swig and grinned. ‘What a night.’