To: John Shepard
From: Tali'Zorah vas Normandy
Subject: Something Exciting!
I have some exciting news! The fourth stage of my treatments is finally over! I no longer need to wear my suit here on the homeworld at all, even when people from off world are around me! I'm so excited! Garrus is happy too now that when he comes around that I can greet him face to face without getting looks. I know the Admirals and Captains are not stupid, but appearances, you know.
The best thing about me clearing the fourth stage though is now I am able to go to the oceans and swim in the water! Sure, it'll have to be at a special bay that has a barrier in that blocks the micro-organisms of the sea, but, that doesn't matter. Ever since I've laid eyes on the emerald oceans of my world, I've wanted so bad to swim in them, and now I can. This is something very special for me, and I want to share it with people who mean a lot to me, so, will you and the Major come? Obviously, EDI and Joker are invited too. I'm trying to get together as much of the old squad as possible. It has been four years, so I don't know if everybody can make it, and I understand that, but, honestly, it would not be the same if you and Kaidan were not here with me and Garrus for this, at least. The four of us, we've seen so much, done so much together. You're part of my family. Anyways, I know you're retired from the Alliance but still a Spectre, but like you told me, it's more symbolic that you actually being at the council's call all the time, so it's not like there's a lot of reasons left where you can say no without me having to come chase you down.
Let me know something soon, okay?
P.S.- Garrus even bought a turian bathing suit for this!
Shepard broke out laughing at his desk. "Oh, I can't miss that."
"Can't miss what?"
Shepard rolled his chair to the left a bit so his field of vision wasn't blocked by his model case. Lying in Shepard's bed, under the sheets, was Kaidan. He had been reading a novel on his datapad, but, the sudden burst of laugher from Shepard had caught his attention.
"The sight of our friend Garrus in a turian bathing suit." He couldn't even say the words without laughing.
The man in the bed's jaw dropped further and further as his face twisted as he tried to wrap his head around the idea. Finally, he got some words out. "Turians… have bathing suits?" Even as straight-faced as Kaidan could be sometimes, he couldn't help but bust out into a low, deep laugh. "You're right, I don't think that's a sight someone could easily pass up. So, where are we going to get to see it at?"
"Rannoch. Tali finished the fourth stage of her adaptation treatments, and now she can go to the beach."
"The beachs of Rannoch?" There was a bit of nostalgia in Kaidan's tone. "Hm… now, that's a place we haven't been in a while. And, no Reaper-controlled geth is a big plus too."
"Yeah…" Shepad's voice trailed off into a deep, unhappy memory as his eyes trailed off to somewhere far, far away.
Still four years after the fact, anything about the war with the Reapers was an odd subject to mention around Shepard. Some days, he himself would go on and on about certain missions like taking out Cerberus bases, saving people from swarms of husks, and a few others here and there. But, then some things brought back bad memories.
Not even Kaidan, the person in the galaxy that knew Shepard the most, could tell every little thing that could possibly pull up the bad memories, but, he knew he just had, and, he knew of what. "John… I'm… I'm sorry. I know you're thinking about Legion right now." Kaidan slid out of the covers of the bed and walked over to Shepard, then kneeled in front of the man sitting in the chair, pushed his hair that had grown out quite a bit over the years out of the way, and placed a gentle kiss on his forehead. "I know you have so many bad memories, that war really… fucked us all up. Every place I can think of, I have more bad memories of than good ones. But, remember how when you came back to me, after you survived the explosion of the Citadel and said we had all the time in the universe for ourselves? And do you remember what I said back? That now that we had time to make some good memories together, to balance out the bad ones. Legion was a good friend to you, but, I know that he wouldn't want you to be like this. Rannoch was his homeworld too, so I'm sure he would have wanted you to not to think of the bad that happened there, to what he did for peace between his and Tali's people."
Shepard's dark blue eyes came back from that faraway place, and met Kaidan's hazel-y brown eyes as a slight smile came across his face. "Kaidan… I…"
Kaidan placed a finger over Shepard's lips. "Just nod your head that I'm right and you agree you'll stop thinking about the bad things that have happened for now, because we're about to make some good ones with our friends soon."
"Good." Kaidan said smoothly as he stood up and grabbed Shepard by the wrist, pulled him of the chair, and started leading him to the bed "now, before you send an email to Tali, let's make a few quick good memories and then, after, browse the extranet for some some clothes. Last time I checked, neither of us had anything to go to the beach in."
Shepard smiled a coy smile. "Hey, aren't you forgetting something? You're supposed to be contacting the Council soon, Spectre Alenko."
"Am I now, Mr. Shepard?" Kaidan pulled the two onto the bed, then, with his free hand, he reached it back and fiddled a bit before finding and pressing a button. "Hey, EDI?"
"Yes, Kaidan?" the voice of the ship's AI came over the intercom.
"Do you think you could do some maintenance on the QEC. Something that will take about, oh, I don't know, about 20-30 minutes?"
There was a slight pause before EDI replied. "There has been a .0004 second lag in vocal synchronization. I will rewrite the programing code and install it. It will take 24 minutes to complete."
Kaidan gave a lustful smile to Shepard. "That's perfect, EDI. Thank you."
"You are welcome, Kaidan. " And, with a beep, she was gone.
"Now…" Kaidan began moving his face closer to Shepard's "what can we do in 24 minutes?"
Shepard suddenly rolled so that he was pinning down Kaidan. "Oh, I can think of a few things" he replied with a playful tone before he brought his lips down upon Kaidan's.