Across the Universe


That night, I'd slept in Sabrina's quarters. She'd insisted upon it, since we hadn't gotten to have a sleep over since we were kids. Luckily, our sleepover didn't involve braiding hair (not that mine was long enough even) or doing make up.

We actually slept!

Of course, Sabrina was a blanket hog but I liked sleeping all sprawled out on my front. So it was kind of even. Kind of.

I awoke when I heard the click of a picture being taken, and I tiredly blinked my eyes open to see Sabrina already out of her pajamas and in her uniform, grinning over me and holding up a holo.

"Aww Kim! You're so cute, there's drool on your cheek!" she gushed. I shot upwards and wiped my face clean. "And send!" Sabrina cackled. I glared at her.

"Why are you being evil when I'm just waking up?" I growled darkly.

It wasn't that I wasn't a morning person… I just didn't appreciate pictures being taken of me while I was sleeping. Or when I was drooling.

Sabrina whistled innocently. "I just wanted everyone to see how cute my baby sister is," she told me, tackling me back into bed and smiling ear to ear. "So I sent the pic to Tali-"

I shoved her off of me and jumped out of bed, staring at her, horrified. "What?! You sent a pic of me drooling to my Love?!"

"But you were so cute!" Sabrina pouted. Then she smiled evilly. "Oh, and I sent it to Ashley, Kaidan, Garrus, and Wrex."

"I fucking hate you," I sighed, stomping over to my uniform and shrugging it on quickly. "I will never sleep in your room with you ever again."

Sabrina gasped dramatically and placed a hand on her chest, as if I'd stabbed her. "I'm sorry. I'll delete it now and make sure everyone else deletes the holo too. Look!" she opened up her omni-tool and showed me as she deleted the embarrassing photo. I smiled.

"Thanks Sabs," I told her softly. "But if you ever do something like that to me again, I'm telling everyone about the time back in the Reds when you tried to eat that-"

"No!" Sabrina yelped, jumping out of bed. "Never speak of it again! I'm going to go and delete that photo off of everyone's omni-tools before you ruin my reputation."

I beamed up at her. "You don't need my help to ruin your reputation Sabs. I'm certain you do that enough yourself... Remember that time you hung up on the Council?"

"Oh shush, you," Sabrina ruffled my hair. "Okay, I'm heading down to the storage deck to delete everyone's holos. You go up to the cockpit and plot a course from here to Feros," she ordered. I saluted mockingly before leaving her quarters and heading up to the cockpit. I waved at Pressly as I passed by him.

"Officer Kogan," he greeted with a nod. I smiled at him brightly.

"Could I ask you where Sabrina had us drifting while I wasn't on shift?" I asked the navigator.

He smiled down at me and nodded. "We just refueled at the station in the Dakka System," Pressly told me kindly.

I nodded. "Awesome, Nubian Expanse. Shouldn't take us too long then," I muttered to myself before smiling back at Pressly. "Thank you Pressly! I'll see you later."

Since we were in the Dakka System, we'd only need to make one FTL jump from the Dakka Relay to the Hercules Relay in the Attican Beta Cluster.

The older man nodded in response, returning to his work while I hurried to the cockpit to tell Moreau where Sabrina wanted to go. Sneaking up on the pilot, I plucked his hat off his head and placed it on mine.

"Good morning Moreau," I chirped. He glanced up at me with a smirk, reaching up and taking his hat back.

"Morning," he nodded, returning his hat to its rightful place: atop his horrible hat hair. "And before you start bugging me about it, I slept."

"I did too, in a real bed," I bragged, throwing myself into my seat and dancing my fingers across the controls. "Anyways, Sabrina wants us to go to Feros. Just jump from the Dakka Relay to the Hercules Relay, and we should be landing on Feros in about half an hour."

"Think you can keep your eyes open when we make the FTL jump this time?" Moreau questioned me lightly. My hands faltered, aero-gel flickering slightly as my hands passed through it. I turned my head to look at the pilot with slightly widened eyes.

"What?" I choked out. He noticed that I didn't like FTL?

Joker smirked. "CP, I see you cringe every time we hit a relay," he shrugged his shoulders nonchalantly. "It got kind of obvious. But you know, it's weird that you dislike it considering how long you've been a pilot."

"I'm a co-pilot," I argued weakly. Joker's smirk grew into a grin. "And… it's just because FTL on the Normandy feels different than FTL on other ships!" I explained.

Joker nodded understandingly, but with a glint of mischief in his green orbs. "Yeah, this ship might just be a bit too much for your average pilot to handle-"

I shot him a glare. "Hey-!" I interjected, annoyed.

"-Lucky for you, I'm not average," Moreau finished, giving me a thumbs up and a cheeky grin. I rolled my eyes and crossed my arms.

"Did you seriously just go there Moreau?" I grumbled, scowling. "You, my friend, are a jerk. I am a splendid pilot-"

Moreau laughed. "Co-pilot," he corrected, eyes sparkling with amusement.

"-Co-pilot." I hissed out, "And I could totally whoop your ass flying this ship. You know, if you actually let me fly for more than just a couple minutes at a time."

Giving me an amused expression, the pilot shrugged and looked back at the controls "Of course you could CP. Of course you could," he soothed.


I sulked in my seat, pouting. I was totally going to get back at him for this later.

Joker practically beamed at me when he spoke up once again. "I'll be sure to warn you before we hit the relays so you can close your eyes."

Definitely going to get back at him.

Before I could snap back at him with some half-assed comment, Sabrina stepped into the cockpit "Kim, Joker. We heading to Feros now?"

"Just about to make the relay jump." Joker told her. He flicked on the comm to transmit to the rest of the ship, so he could let everyone know we were going FTL. "Dakka relay is in range. Initiating transmission sequence." Joker called over the comm. Green lights began to flicker across my screen. "We are connected. Calculating transit mass and destination," Moreau turned his head to look at me. "CP, how're we doing?"

I glided my fingers across the panels before giving Joker a thumbs up and a nod. Things were looking good.

Moreau nodded in return, returning his gaze to his screen. "Relay is hot. Acquiring approach vector."

Green began flashing all over my screen, letting me know that everyone was ready to go. "All stations secure for transit." I announced. "Sabs, you might want to hold onto something."

Sabrina nodded, grabbing on to the back of my seat.

"Board is green. Approach run has begun." Joker spoke calmly. "Oh, and CP?" I turned to see him grinning at me cheekily "Might want to close your eyes now."

I cringed, shutting my eyes tightly and gripping the arms of my seat. Inwardly I fumed, hearing Moreau and Sabrina let out chuckles and giggles at my response.

"Hitting the relay in 3…2…1…" Moreau counted down.

I held my breath as we hit the relay, only releasing it a few seconds after we left FTL speeds. I shook off the wave of dizziness that came with the FTL jump.

"That's all folks, we'll be landing in about twenty minutes," Joker announced before shutting off the main comm. "So CP, what was that I just saw you doing? Closing your eyes during FTL?" he teased lightly, looking as happy as Santa Claus.

"I know. I know. You're a fantastic pilot." I grumbled, scowling. "Just give me a little bit more time with this ship and then I'll be able to keep my eyes open, and then I'm going to whoop your ass Moreau."

"Sure you will," he chuckled, tapping a few buttons on his controls. "Everything look good on your screen?"

I checked quickly, taking in all the information at record speed before nodding at the older man. "Yup! You?"

"Board is green," he drawled. Sabrina patted my head.

"Nice work you two, I'm going to go decide who I'm taking with me onto Feros," the commander told us, making her way out.

"So Kim, how have your therapy sessions been going?" he asked me as soon as Sabrina exited the cockpit.

I smirked. "Considering that Karin can mute the cameras in the med-bay so you can't listen in and find out for yourself, I'm going to tell you that they've been going splendidly. And you'll never be the wiser."

Joker rolled his eyes. "What do you guys even talk about anyways?"

"We talk about which male on the ship would look the prettiest in Lolita fashion," I told him confidently. The pilot smiled at my answer, shaking his head in disbelief.

"Okay, I'll back off," he sighed, turning on his headset. "Hey Commander, you might want to let your teammates for Feros know that they should go and wait by the decontamination chamber. Shouldn't be too long now."

I linked my headset to his comm link and joined in the conversation. "Hey Sabs, who you taking with you this time?"

"Peaches and Tomato," Sabrina answered.

Joker let out a snort. "I'm sorry, can you repeat that Shepard?"

I heard Sabrina huff on the other end. "Unripened Orange, I said that I'm bringing Peaches and Tomato with me onto Feros. And you can call me Commander Dragonfruit."

I couldn't even talk because I was laughing so hard. Joker himself was also laughing hysterically, in complete disbelief that his commander was referring to everyone by their fruit personalities.

"Damn it Shepard, you're hilarious," Joker said in between laughs. "Please, just… wow. I don't even know what to say."

"Commander Dragonfruit out!" Sabrina cackled. It took me a few minutes to finally calm down, but thankfully I did. If I laughed any longer, I might have died.

"Okay, okay," I took a few deep breaths. "Okay, I'm going to head on down to the second deck and grab myself some water. I'll grab you coffee because I highly doubt that you slept very long, okay?" I stood up and poked Joker's arm. He looked up at me and nodded.

"Sure, okay. I'm not stopping you," Joker smiled. "Just try and hail the Feros Colony so we can land before you go."

I sighed dramatically, but returned to my seat to do as he asked. "This is the SSV Normandy requesting clearance to land," I spoke, calmly and clearly.

No one answered.

My head tilted slightly sideways in confusion, I repeated myself. "SSV Normandy requesting clearance to land. Feros Colony, is anyone there? Hello?" I tapped my earpiece a few times, but still there was no response. I stood up and leaned against Joker's seat, bored… and slightly worried. "Yeah Moreau? I'm not getting any response. I think… maybe it might be because of the geth," I mumbled. "I mean, we heard that geth were spotted on the planet so... yeah. If they aren't responding that's the first thing that comes to mind."

Joker's brow furrowed. "Let me try," he activated his comm. "Normandy to Feros Colony, requesting clearance…" He slumped against his seat, closing his eyes and letting out a heavy sigh. "Yeah, that's weird. Well, Shepard can deal with that I guess. And it might not be the geth CP, maybe their communications are just on the fritz right now. Go and grab your water, I'll land the ship."

I felt a bit of dread sink into my chest.

What if the geth killed everyone on Feros? What if-

"CP, they're probably fine," Joker grinned. "Stop looking so worried. Humans are tough, got it?"

"Says the one with brittle bones," I mused, letting a small smile grace my lips. "Okay, I'll trust you. Be back in a bit… as long as I don't get distracted by anyone!"

"I'll see you in a few years then," the pilot quipped. I exited the cockpit and headed down to the crew deck, feeling a lot lighter.

Joker was a good friend. The fact that he noticed me start panicking and stopped it before I freaked out… I really didn't give him enough credit sometimes.

But I guess it was fine, because most of the time he gave himself a bit too much credit.

I giggled to myself, my boots clanging heavily against the steps. Entering the mess hall, I froze when I spotted a certain Asari sitting alone at one of the tables. Hearing my footsteps, she turned with a hopeful expression.

And that hopeful look twisted into distaste when she realized it was me, and not a different human.

She was probably hoping that I as Sabrina.

That thought made a frown appear on my face, but I quickly switched it to a smile and waved at the blue-skinned alien stiffly. "Hello," I greeted.

Her expression turned puzzled, likely confused as to why I had greeted her. After all, my first words to her specifically hadn't exactly been the kindest. "Hello," she responded suspiciously. I let out a sigh, taking the seat next to her and deciding to do Sabrina's bidding and try to get along.

"I'm sorry that I yelled at you on the comm and that your mom died," I stated bluntly. Liara winced. I winced. "Sorry, I'm not exactly the most tactful all the time," I laughed awkwardly.

Liara nodded. "Yes… I noticed that."

Well, this was definitely one of the most awkward situations I had ever put myself in. The two of us sat in silence for a few minutes, and finally I was ready to give up. I pushed myself up out of the chair.

"I was just down here to grab something to drink anyways," I coughed. "Nice talking to you."

"Wait!" Liara cried, grabbing my wrist. I froze, stiffening up. Liara quickly let go. "Thank you, I just… I don't really understand humans very much, but it was nice of you to apologize." A blue blush dusted her cheeks. "Shepard said you would eventually, but… I didn't believe her. She was right though," the asari's eyes softened at the mention of my sister, and my eyes hardened.

I nodded stiffly. "You're welcome," I forced out, running a hand through my short hair. Guess I had to break the news to her. "And look, about Sabrina… you know she likes Kaidan right?"

Liara's face fell, and I felt like I had just kicked a puppy in the face. "What?"

I shifted uncomfortably. "You like her, I get that, really I do," I sighed. "Sabrina's amazing, she's kind and funny. I just…" God I felt horrible. "I don't want to see anyone get hurt," I told her seriously. "Which is why I'm letting you know how Shepard feels now before things go too far."

She stared up at me, eyes wide and shocked and hurt. I bit my lip. "O-oh, well, thank you for telling me Officer Kogan," she choked out, standing up. "I'm going to lay down for a bit. It was nice talking to you."

"I'm sorry," I muttered as she walked away.

Why didn't I just let Sabrina shatter her heart into a thousand pieces?

I distracted myself for a few moments by getting myself some water and a cup of coffee for Joker. My shoulders were slumped as I re-entered the cockpit, the pilot spinning his seat around to face me as I let out a loud sigh. "Wow CP, you look depressed," he commented, taking the coffee from me. "Thanks."

"I broke Blueberry's heart," I revealed as Joker went to take a sip of his beverage. "Blueberry meaning Liara."

Joker spat out his coffee in shock. "Wait, what?" he choked out, wiping his mouth with his arm. "What happened now? I thought she liked Shepard, never would have guessed that she liked you after the whole 'Bitch do you want to fight me' thing."

I recoiled in shock. "Okay, now we're not on the same page. I just told her about the whole Sabrina liking Kaidan thing and that's what broke her heart."

Moreau blinked. "Oh."

I took a sip of my water and sighed. "When I told her, I felt like I kicked a puppy Moreau. I mean, I don't like her but I just didn't want her to keep pining after Sabs only to get shot down," I explained, leaning against the nearby wall.

Joker looked a bit conflicted, pulling his hat over his eyes and grimacing. "In my opinion-"

Our comms blared. "Why the hell didn't you warn us about her driving?!" Kaidan's voice shouted through our earpieces. Joker winced at the volume while I jumped, spilling most of my water onto my uniform.

"Aw shit," I glowered. "Damn you Alenko! You deserve all the suffering Sabrina's driving brings you!" I shouted back through the comm.

Joker chuckled. "You made her spill her drink Kaidan," the pilot explained.

Sabrina's voice rang through our earpieces. "Kim? Do you think the Mako would survive ramming into an…" she paused, and I flinched when I heard a crashing sound. "Oh never mind, we're fine," the commander almost sang.

"You just rammed us into the Armature!" Ashley cried in disbelief. I could almost imagine them, letting Sabrina drive and sitting all pale and sickly. "Are you trying to kill us Commander?!"

"We're all alive, aren't we?" Sabrina laughed over the comm. "Woohoo!" she cheered.

I pulled at my soaking shirt, sighing and beginning to pull it off. No way was I going to stay in a wet uniform.

"Uh, CP?" Joker gulped, tugging on his shirt collar and averting his gaze. I raised an eyebrow.

"Relax Moreau, I'm wearing a tank top under this," I stated dryly. "What, did you really think I'd strip in front of you if I wasn't wearing something underneath? But if you're feeling that awkward," I pulled Joker's hat down over his eyes before tugging my soaked shirt off and hanging it up to dry. "I aint going back down to deck two for a dry shirt! I was just there."

"Ooh, is the thought of Kim topless too much for you to handle Joker?" Ash teased over the comm. I snickered, returning to my seat.

"I think the Normandy's the only girl he'd be able to handle," I joked.

"The unripened orange and the strawberry," Sabrina cackled. "Peaches, Tomato! Look what I can do!"

"Shit, Skipper!" Ash screamed. "You're driving too close to the edge!"

"It's Commander Dragonfruit. Damn it you guys, it doesn't work if I'm the only one referring to you by your fruits!"

I blinked and tilted my head towards Joker. "Did Kaidan pass out or something?"

"Just trying to keep myself from throwing up, Strawberry Shortcake," the biotic answered, Sabrina letting out a cheer at the word 'strawberry'. "And sorry for making you spill your drink."

"It's okay," I grinned.

"For the record, I've handled my fair share of women," Joker piped up grumpily.

I snickered. "Yet you get flustered when I'm changing in front of you."

Joker leaned back, eyeing me lazily. "You've seen me fly this ship CP. You've gotta admit that I'm good with my hands."

Before I could point out that I was just as good, Ash cut me off.

"Man Joker, I'm surprised you haven't denied your attraction to Kim yet. I mean, I've been implying it this whole time."

My eyes blinked in confusion. "Wait… that was what she was implying? I didn't catch that."

Moreau laughed. "Come on Williams, CP's too short for me. I'm more into tall beautiful blondes."

"But Kim's so cute," Sabrina whined. "Okay, putting this thing in park, let's go check out that place!"

"Finally, she's not driving anymore," Kaidan sighed in relief.

"We'll call you guys later!" Sabrina told us before hanging up.

I let out a yawn, stretching my arms above my head. "Well, I'm tired again. Here's hoping that they don't let Sabrina drive for the rest of the mission."

Joker shrugged. "We're docked, so I don't care if you nap."

The two of us sat in silence for a bit, my eyes starting to get a bit droopy. It didn't help that the ship was so quiet, and that Joker wasn't talking to me. I vaguely registered Joker saying… something to me before I dozed off.

Only to wake up a couple hours later to the sound of something banging against the ships window.

"Uh, so the colonists of Zhu's Hope are kind of trying to claw their way onto the ship… The Commander says to just stay inside and keep the colonists out," Joker awkwardly spoke over the comm. I opened my eyes, drowsy, and let out a groan. The pilot glanced at me and smiled. "Hey CP, check out all the colonists." Joker told me, pointing out our windows for me to see numerous humans throwing rocks and other such things at the Normandy.

Obviously it wasn't very effective, our kinetic barriers were more than strong enough to defend against their pathetic attempts to break in.

But I felt my stomach drop seeing their slightly crazed expressions.

Shaking my head, I sighed. "Okay, Sabrina has to stop taking us to all these crazy places. Can't we just land on a planet and find something normal? Like a bunny, bunnies are cute."

"If we found a bunny, then I'd be worried it was a man-eating bunny or something," Moreau shuddered.

We conversed and laughed about numerous crazy things that could probably happen with Sabrina as our commander, and about an hour later the colonists stopped throwing things at the ship, looking dazed. Not too long after that, I checked the security footage to see Sabrina in the decontamination chamber with the others.

"So Moreau, think that they're ever going to let Sabs touch the mako again after experiencing her crazy driving first hand?" I questioned the scruffy man.

Just as I'd finished my sentence Sabrina stepped into the cockpit with Kaidan by her side. "What was that about my driving, Flight Officer?"

I looked back at her innocently. "Nothing, nothing. You're a very… creative driver."

Kaidan chuckled, but I noted that he looked a few shades paler than usual. "That's one way to put it."

Joker rolled his eyes at us while the two of us laughed. "Thank god you weren't using the Normandy's Mako. Means that Garrus and Tali don't need to make the repairs," the pilot stated bluntly.

"Pfft. All they'll need to do is slap some Omni-gel on it," Sabrina scoffed, waving it off like it was no big deal.

Ashley coughed, entering the cockpit. "Maybe swap out all of the parts too. Exogeni's going to be pissed when they see that piece of scrap metal."

Sabrina crossed her arms and glared at the soldier. "Care to repeat that, Gunnery Chief?"

I stood up and nudged Ashley in the side. "…Did you take a holo?" I asked her.

The soldier winked down at me. "I'll send it to you later," she whispered.

Soon I would have my revenge.

Joker coughed loudly to get our attention. "Hey Commander, next time we touch down let's try not to park the ship in a colony of mutant zombies. Just thinking out loud here."

Not too long after that everyone cleared out so Sabrina could brief everyone on what happened in the conference room. I leaned back comfortably, helping Joker prepare for takeoff.

"Hey Moreau," I started. "I think you were trying to tell me something before I dozed off before. Mind telling me what you said?"

He raised an eyebrow. "CP, what are you even talking about?"

I shook my head. "Never mind, must have been a weird dream thing or something."

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