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One of the things Allie missed on the SR-1 was the bonding she and her crew had when they cleaned their weapons and gear after a mission. Now she was so damn busy, Cortez or Vega usually took care of her gear for her. She was pretty sure Kaidan still took care of his own stuff, as did Garrus. Today, though, the mission wasn't so bad and only a few magazines had been fired, so her gear wasn't too dirty. She sat on the floor in the shuttle bay in a loose circle with Kaidan, Garrus, and James while Javik leaned on some crates to watch.

“In my cycle,” he intoned, “our commanding officers did not clean their gear. It was a task that fell to others. We believed it to be beneath them because of their rank.”

“Yeah, well, we aren't in your cycle, are we, Buggy?” James muttered under his breath.

Allie nudged his leg and answered Javik. “Most of the time, Lt. Cortez does this for me. My doing this now, though serves two purposes – one, I don't ask my people to do anything I won't do myself, and two, this is a good morale booster and give me a chance to talk to my crew and see how things are going.”

“The Reapers are winning. That is how things are going,” Javik sniffed. “You should be strategizing with our allies, Commander. Leave this menial work to your lessers.”

Allie had to bite back a laugh when she saw James and Kaidan shoot a dirty look in Javik's direction. Judging from the way Garrus's mandibles were twitching, he was either amused or ticked, Allie wasn't sure which.

“So, Javik, your biotics,” Allie cleared her throat and tried to change the subject.

“Yes? What of them?”

“Why are they green?”

Each one of Javik's eyes slowly blinked, seemingly incredulous she'd ask such a thing. “Why are yours blue?” he spoke slowly, as though he were talking to a child.

“Aren't they all?” she shrugged. “Mine are, Kaidan's are, the asari all are. Every biotic I've ever known has a blue aura when they use their powers except you. Is it because you're Prothean?”

“Perhaps,” Javik said, not moving from his spot.

“Perhaps? You mean you don't know?” James was incredulous. “Javik, the last of a superior race, who doesn't know why his biotics are weird?”

“I am not a scientist. I did not study the evolution of our species,” Javik retorted, glaring at James. “I exist for one purpose only – to destroy the Reapers. If I am successful, what does the color of my biotics matter?”

The group sat in silence for a bit, the quiet punctuated by metal clacking together and the murmurs of someone asking for oil or cloths. Allie was almost at a loss – she was trying to help Javik fit in with the rest of the crew and he was rarely accommodating about it. Still, she knew what it was like to be an outsider and regardless of what Javik said or did, she couldn't help but think he was lonely.

“Unrefined eezo is blue,” she finally said. “Maybe it's got something to do with that. But that wouldn't explain why yours would be green.”

Javik shifted on his feet and crossed his arms over his stomach, shifting his attention back to James and Kaidan cleaning their weapons but didn't answer.

“Or maybe it's your body reacting with how eezo has changed,” Allie surmised again.

“It's an element, Shepard, it doesn't 'change',” Garrus chimed in.

“Well, how it's processed, then,” Allie argued. “We can't be using the same methods to refine that they used over 50,000 years ago.”

“It could be the abilities he uses,” Kaidan guessed. “They aren't all green.”

“So you noticed that, too,” Allie said. Honestly, she didn't give Javik's biotics much thought outside of combat and even then, it was more a passing curiosity. His biotics weren't even blue all the time – a couple of the powers he unleashed bathed him in blue instead of green. “I'm glad it wasn't just me. But then why aren't any of ours different colors? Our Reave is blue, Aria can Lash and that's blue...”

“She's also an asari. Might be green if she did that biotic field thing he does. What do you call it, Javik?” Garrus asked.

“Dark Channel,” came the curt reply. “This discussion is pointless and does nothing to help us win this war.”

“But it might,” Allie said, running through her check to make sure she reassembled her rifle properly. “Maybe if you taught Kaidan or me some of the skills you have, we'd have a larger skill set on the battlefield. That, in turn, could help figure out why you glow green sometimes and we glow blue all the time.”

The Prothean let out a heavy sigh beside her. “Your point is valid. If you wish to learn a new skill, I will consider your request. However, I still do not see the purpose in discovering why our abilities manifest in different colors.”

Javik pushed himself off the crates and strode off to the elevator, ending his part in the discussion.

James whistled low when the elevator hissed shut. “You'd better be careful with that one, Lola. Seems like you pissed him off.”

“You mean there are times he isn't pissed off?” Kaidan asked.

Allie smacked Kaidan's leg. “Be nice. How would you feel if you were the last of your species? If every single thing you knew and cared about was practically wiped from history? He said before the Reapers had been there for a century when he was born. He doesn't know life without war. I was just trying to make small talk to help him feel included.”

“I don't think he cares about that,” Garrus replied, pulling himself to his feet. “Still, it would be interesting to find out why there's such a difference in your biotic auras.”

“Oh, maybe instead of Buggy, I should call him the Jolly Green Giant!” James exclaimed, then frowned. “Nah, that's too cumbersome. Oh, I know. Maybe Verde. Or just Grumpy.”

“Or you could just be nice,” Allie admonished. She stowed her gear in her locker and made her way to the elevator, fully intent on having Javik teach her Dark Channel, curious about whether or not she would glow green, too.