Actions

Work Header

The Song

Chapter Text

ONGOING MEDICAL PROFILE: PATHFINDER SARA ELLEN RYDER

FROM THE FILES OF TEMPEST PHYSICIAN DR. LEXI T'PERRO.

PHYSICAL EVAL:

CLASS: Vanguard (Biotic/Combat Specialist)
AGE: 22
HEIGHT: 5’7
WEIGHT: 130 lbs
HAIR: Black
EYES: Blue

- Ryder has a scar down her right eye but refuses to tell me the cause of injury.

- Implants are functioning properly.

- Keeping in excellent physical condition, vitals and reflexes are strong. However I am concerned about her eating habits and she consumes way too much caffeine...this needs improvement.

- Ryder's brain was unable to handle the transfer of SAM. She had a seizure as a result but everything seems normal now. Keeping a watchful eye on brain activity.

UPDATE: SAM is now physically connected to Ryder, but I am having a hard time understanding in what ways. Losing him could potentially kill her.

UPDATE: Ryder is having trouble sleeping and has reported nightmares and stress being the leading cause. Working with SAM to see how this issue can be resolved.

PSYCH EVAL:

- Ryder has some serious emotional scars that she hasn't taken time to process.

UPDATE: Ryder is getting weekly injections for anxiety and to ease reported headaches. I have requested she meet with me for counseling at least twice a week.

----------

Jaal placed Dr. T’Perro’s datapad back on her desk. The medbay was dark with the sound of machines beeping as if in constant annoying song. The lab smelled overly sterilized and the chemical scent burned Jaal’s senses.

He wasn’t sure how he felt yet about these aliens. He was hoping doing a little investigating, while the asari was asleep in the crew's quarters, could lead to information that proved valuable for the Resistance. He was curious as to what these supposed “Biotics” were. Perhaps alien weaponry of some kind? His eyes narrowed at the thought. If these aliens proved hostile to his people, then they would have to develop new defenses.

Though with what resources he didn’t know. They were hardly defending themselves against the kett.

It was part of why he volunteered himself to join this “Pathfinder” on her Tempest. He had to admit she commanded quite the ship. He had never seen anything like it before and it's engine core was very impressive for such a small vessel. He was surprised the Pathfinder was so willing to give him a full tour. However he found the rest of the ships layout...confusing.

Copying the data from Dr. T’Perro’s datapad about his new 'crewmate,' he then cloaked himself and began walking quietly back towards his newly claimed space in the tech lab. It was quiet and nobody on the ship ever seemed to go in there. They were alien...just like the kett. He couldn't trust them and preferred not to be disturbed.

Padded footsteps interrupted his thoughts however before he was even able to reach the ladder. The door to the Pathfinder's quarters slid open and there she stood, barefoot and frailer looking than any of the other species he had seen on the ship. Jaal noticed that she was obviously exhausted, being just inches away from him, as she yawned and began walking out of her room and towards the kitchen.

‘Nightmares?’ Jaal thought to himself. Most of the ship's crew was asleep with the exception of Kallo and whoever was still awake in the cargo bay. The Tempest was headed to Voeld so that Ryder could prove both herself and her people's intention to be allies. An act of mercy that many on Aya didn't agree with. After decades of war and despair with the kett, many Angara felt these Milky Way aliens should have been killed on sight. The entire galaxy would be watching her, so why was Ryder out of bed?

“Doing some recon Jaal?” she stoped in front of the kitchen door. Turning over her shoulder and practically staring him down with a smile that made his heart stop.

‘What?!...how did she...?’

His eyes grew large but he quickly regained his composure and appeared before her. He observed, eyes narrowed as she took in his form with a small smile then continued her way into the kitchen, expecting him to follow. He almost didn't, but curiosity got the better of him. He half expected her to try and stop him, maybe even attempt to kill him. Her reaction had been so...casual.

When he walked into the kitchen to join her, she was already pouring herself some form of dark liquid with a fairly strong, yet pleasant scent and then placing a few small strange grain like white cubes into the mug.

"Sugar cubes" she said tiredly. She had been watching him out of the corner of her eye. "Don't tell Lexi...that goes for you too SAM" she looked up as if arguing with a voice in her head.

Oh right...the AI was physically part of her.

Fascinating. Jaal watched with heavy curiosity as long ebony strands of hair, tucked behind the human's ear, fell forwards as she looked back down at her mug to stir the liquid inside it. He was at a loss for words...she was so strange, but beautiful and calm. She was the same way when she had first landed on Aya, even though her ship was on fire and guns were pointed at her head.

He noticed however that the dark paint she had on her face earlier was now gone. Her eyelids were no longer dark in color. Her bright blue eyes were now shiny like glass, but dark and puffy underneath. Her lips instead of a dark glossy red were now a subtle dark pink hue that matched the warmth of her cheeks. Even her hair was different. On Aya she had it tied back in a strange tail behind her head. Now it all hung loosely down her back and around her face, partially over one eye, hiding the scar he noticed upon first meeting her.

"How?" was all he managed to get out. Though he wished he had been more specific.

"SAM mentioned you were snooping around in the Medbay. I would have done the same thing, though honestly all you had to do was ask me. I'd have told you anything you wanted to know." She held the mug with both hands now and raised it towards her face, inhaling it's sweet aroma before taking a small sip.

"Then...may I ask you a few questions?" Why was she being so calm about this? He uncrossed his arms and his expression changed from forced indifference to wonder. Angara were never really very good at hiding their feelings.

"Of course...um...would you like a cup?" she raised her mug and he looked at it questionably.

Realizing he probably had no idea if he could even drink it, Ryder smirked and walked over to him so he could examine it with his newly issued omni-tool. "It's called coffee, I'm sure you read Lexi complaining about it in..." Her voice trailed off when she took notice of the modifications made to his device as a ball of light emerged from his wrist.

Jaal instantly felt a small sense of pride. "Indeed I did. Clearly you still need improvement." He tilted his head to the side in curiosity after reading the brew was non-toxic. "I'd like to try some...though, please, no sugar cubes." He was hoping he pronounced it correctly.

----------

It wasn't often that Sara was asked about her biotics. Normally everyone she spoke with knew what they were, if not how to harness them. She could go on and on about how even to this day, people were still afraid of them and how it was that very fear that clouded people's minds. Biotics had helped advance nearly every race in the Milky Way Galaxy. Often however, it had come at a cost.

There was so much history, so many ways she could explain the magnificent forms of dark energy and it's capabilities, that she honestly had a hard time figuring out how to break it down so that Jaal would be able to understand. She decided it would be easier to just show him.

Jaal was watching her with curiously as she took her now empty coffee mug and placed it only slightly farther away from her person, giving herself a better angle to work with.

Taking a deep breath, Sara lifted her hand and forced her mind and body to focus. The familiar chill of dark energy coursed through her as blue and purple light blazed in her eyes and coursed through her hand before enveloping itself around the mug. Gently, she focused on raising the mug to lift off the table, and into the air.

Upon hearing Jaal catch his breath, Sara painfully hoped that he wasn't afraid of her now. She looked over at him in worry, suddenly in awe as small amounts of static electricity danced across his physique.

'A reaction to my biotics maybe?'

He was sitting across from her. Even so, something about his EM ability felt...exhilarating. Even at their weakest states, both Jaal and Sara's energies seemed desperate to synchronize.

Sara regrettably placed the mug back down, the cold energy dissipating from her hand, afraid that now maybe she had made her new guest uncomfortable. Alien or not, maybe his opinion of her would be the same as everyone else. He would see her as nothing but a freak. "Sorry." She placed a concerned hand on his. "Are you alright?"

----------

Jaal couldn't help but stare at the back of the human's palm. Her hand seemed almost cool to the touch, even over the sleek and leather like cloth of his glove, despite the warm mug she had been holding only minutes before. He studied the shape and lines of her unusual amount of five fingers, her fairly short and neatly cut claws shiny and black, but chipped in some places and a much lighter color underneath.

These 'Biotics,' what she had just shown him were truly fascinating. But the moment her ability had manifested, waves of emotions flooded through Jaal that were not his own. Her energy seemed to spark his electromagnetics in a way he didn't quite understand.

Words eluded him as he struggled to compose himself upon her query "No- I mean there is nothing to be sorry about- these..." He struggled to find the right words. "Biotics of yours, they are biological?"

'Stars....what was that?'

Ryder, for some reason, looked surprised by his question. "In a way yes, technically. But not all humans, or Milky Way species for that matter, have the ability."

Realizing he was waiting for more of an explanation she sighed and broke eye contact. A look of defeat washed over her pale features. "I assume you know about my mother..."

It was more of a statement than a question.

"Your medical file just listed her as...deceased." He felt guilty just mentioning her death. He still didn't trust Ryder or her alien companions, but somehow making her relive the death of her mother and seeing the sorrow in her eyes at the memory still seemed monstrous.

'Skkut'

Ryder nodded her head and stared back into her mug, holding it as if it were full again. She fell silent for a few moments before her eyes, reminding him of Aya's waterfalls, locked onto his own with newfound seriousness and dread as she spoke.

"Have you ever heard of Element Zero?"