A Turians Valentines (Garrus' Valentines Day plan for Shepard)
While working away on some… projects in the forward battery earlier this morning EDI comes on the comms.
"Garrus, have you decided what to do for Valentines day?" she asked.
"What?" I replied, half interested, as if I had no idea what she was talking about.
"Valentines!" she exclaimed, but then as if aware of someone behind the doors hearing our conversation she kept her voice to an excited whisper.
"The time of the year on the human Calendar dedicated to 'Saint Valentines' a noted individual from 496 AD, though somehow the anniversary of his death became a symbol of romantic advances — in the 18th century- to individuals you would have a lower probability of success with on any other given day of the year. Or so I've noted."
"I'm aware of today EDI yes, though the history behind it is interesting" I said to her through the walls of the forward battery without looking away from my terminal. "I could send you relevant files if you wish" She offered, clearly hinting with her metallic inflects that that was hardly the main topic she was pressing on.
"No thanks" was all I said in return, trying my best to seem uninterested.
"You MUST have something planned, if my bio-reading on turians are correct, you are holding something back" She said, dropping to a different tone.
"I thought they removed those Cerberus cameras" I said, finally looking up and around.
"The IR sensors are within the walls mixed with mission critical wiring, the technician crew never bothered much with them.
What's the plan?" she said.
"You know the importance of it being a surprise?" I asked, losing up the terminal and prepping for the door.
"Of course, I would be pleased to assist." She said.
"Fine. Let me know when we dock the citadel, then I need to get off the ship unseen, then you need to cover for me."
"I can direct high-risk personnel away from you route as you leave the ship at dock, I have also created the proper documents to make it seem as if you were called to an important impromptu meeting aboard the citadel with the Primarch and the rest of the hierarchy, including Mr. Vakarian." She said.
I shook my head a little at the speed at which she could accomplish things. And my initial fears of her becoming a liability to my Valentines plans getting out could be baseless. It already seems like she'll be an asset."
"Alright" I said, "Here's what I need."
"Commander, your are requested to be at this location on the Citadel in an 2 hours. I have marked the location on your Omni-tool." EDI said to Shepard through the comms in Shepard quarters.
"Heheh, what an you tell me?" Shepard said with a laugh, knowing who is likely to request her presence on a day like today. That turian had been noticeably more absent these past few days. And Shepard knew that that only meant one thing, he was planning something.
"Only that I would choose the black dress over the silver, It seems more… 'perfect'. ", Shepard could almost see EDI's bunny ear motions through her voice in the walls. Figuring EDI was somehow in the know about what that turian had planned, she didn't ask any more prying questions and instead slung out her uniform, took a shower, and picked out the black dress EDI suggested.
Instant access to the extranet and EDI picks fashion to analyze… AI's… Shepard imagined herself shaking her head, but made no motion of it. Ready, she looked at the way point on her omni-tool, and headed towards the Normandy's elevator.
The entire CIC was empty.
Seeing as Shepard was just here a good hour ago, this was a step above what she suspected. Surely she hadn't just been running her ship with everyone knowing something she didn't. Gossip doesn't spread around that fast under her radar does it? Before heading for the airlock, Shepard took the time to check out the other decks. She expected some sort of protest from EDI, but EDI remained silent.
Empty, all of them.
From the observation decks, to the fusion core, she was the only soul on board the Normandy. Well her and EDI of course.
Shepard saved the forward battery for last, having gone from the cargo bay and working her way upwards, she half-guessed his plan would be to remain in his little man-cave and attempt to romantically carry her away to some destination. But that would hardly explain the vague destination that had been set for her by her vague-queen AI.
The forward batter was… clean. Alrighty, something is definitely wrong here. There was always a mess of sorts in some corner of Garrus' abode, and to have it intentionally cleaned unsettled her. He even locked the terminal, and EDI was no help. Any clues she hoped to find along with a member of her crew remained non-existent.
Defeated in her attempts to get a one-up on Garrus, Shepard headed for the airlock and towards the waypoint.
There was nothing unusual about the trip to her destination. The new Citadel was shining brightly against the space dust of the widow nebula, and the massive station bustled with the energy of an entire galaxy. It was only until she took her final turn into a rather light-deprived alley did she start to get lost. Last she knew she was somewhere near the Silversun strip, but that was back that other way…
"STOP THERE!" I sickly voice called out from a shadow, unmistakably a Vorcha. It spoke like it was desperately trying to remember lines it had rehearsed just a few minutes ago as if it's life depended on it. I'm onto this little trick Vakarian, I'll play along…
"I.. Err… My boss wants to speak with you… important… you come now!" It said. Hardly a romantic beginning, Shepard wondered where this was leading…
"Garrus, Shepard has reached the Vorcha, you should prep your rifle" EDI said to Garrus through the radio in his helmet. He had the perfect vantage point over a bridge right into where they would cross by and all it would take is a single shot…
The Vorha was grumbling some inchoherable nonsense under it's breath about credits, and Shepard though she caught the word 'archangel' in it's mutterings, but she couldn't be too sure. Shepard figured she could easily shred this guy with her biotics should he get any funny ideas, or if it turned out her actual destination had been interrupted by this guy. What the hell? Shepard kept thinking, having not a clue onto where this could possibly lead her. Was that ridiculous romantic really capable of sweeping her off her feet for a third time? Shepard let out a smile while thinking back to their old conversations aboard the Normandy while working with Cerberus. And again back to that night at the casino, and everyone watching her dance with the man of her life, and the memories of everything that followed…
The Vorcha stopped walking once they reached an area that opened up to a bridge that spanned between two buildings. Shepards tactical mind quickly noted the advantage of a place like this, and another part of her mind noted how similar this place was to one of her memories….
"Ahhch!" The Vorcha spat, "Best luck! You no escape my army!" it said, growing increasingly edgy. Tapping away on it's bottom-end omni-tool it turned on the lights to the large open space behind her.
"Aww shit, this is the last time I follow a Vorcha around under benign assumptions" she said out loud as she turned to see hundreds of LOKI mechs packed behind her.
Before she could toss him away with a biotic blast, a concussive shot came out of nowhere and blasted it right in the chest and sent it flying into a dark corner. That caught Shepard by surprise and she twisted to the source and instinctively reached her hand for her weapon which wasn't there… because she was in a dress.
Frikkin hell, I'm going to kill that turian.
Up ahead from across the bridge, on the second floor of an open building, was that turian watching her through his scope. Blue armor shining in the light behind him, his helmet's black visor like a single eye staring right through her. Like a shot right to that memory burned into her skull she knew exactly what he was re-creating. And guessing as to the strong likelihood this would mean she would get to shoot something she made her way across the bridge, a little hurriedly as to get to him before those mechs turned on.
As she neared the balcony where he was perched she threw her arms up at him and exclaimed "I'm in a dress!" she didn't get to finish her sentence as she had made her way up the stairs and into the room where he was. The room had a hardwood floor, and the far corner was darkened. As she turned to look at her turian again he had already perched that leg up on that box, holding his rifle just as how she remembered.
He took off his helmet, gave it a moment, waited until a smile escaped her lips and said "Now we both know who's the better shot… but I think I may need your help on this one." His voice smooth and inviting, his visors light throwing off any chance of her really getting a good read on what he was thinking.
She cocked her head a little sideways then pointed to herself with both hand and said "Dress." Then pointed to him "no dress." She couldn't hold back a laugh after picturing him in a dress. "I got that covered" He said, and hit a clasp and in just a few motions, he shook off all his armor to reveal a stunning brand new black suit with blue and silver trimmings. Shepard tripped on her breath a little, but quickly caught herself, maintaining an unimpressed illusion as best as she could —sup-par at best, I've seen better— she made her way over and grabbed the other rifle lying against the wall.
"Right, now these mechs are all equipped with something special… was surprised how simple it was to get together once I dropped my name… I hope you don't mind a little—" he stopped when she nudged him to shut up, all it took was a slight tap of her arm on his chest and that smile that always seemed to steal any words or coordinated thought he had.
"Ready?" he asked from his scope, trained across the bridge as she herself, got as comfy as she could in a dress.
"Ready" she said, eyes through the scope, she looked away from it and gave him a 'really?' look because through the top sights of the scope, he had someone inscribe "Happy Valentines Day Shepard". She would definitely be distracted by that as she tried to shoot, as it will only serve to send her mind running through a sea of good memories. She was finding it harder and harder to keep her cool, he was winning dammit. She was very excited to get to shoot something. All that paper work she had to drive through these past few weeks without a good firefight to even out the strain was almost driving her insane.
Garrus hit a button and the first row of LOKI mechs started up, thats when she noticed they weren't carrying their standard issue pistols. They were carrying — no… he couldn't have gone that far… he did — bottles. He had them all set up with the same bottles they shot at that day on the Citadel, and when the first mechs approached the middle of the bridge they tossed the bottles into the air. She could almost make out what they were saying as they did.
'No Shepard without Vakarian!'
The first couple waves of Mechs it was a straight up contest to see who could hit the bottles first. Shepard wasn't about to let Garrus off easy like she did last time, and for a few minutes there was nothing but the pop of rifles, exploding bottles, and muffled LOKI valentines greetings. After a short while, Garrus decided he should shake things up to add a little more teamwork and less competition — besides, he was baffled that he was down by 3 bottles.
"Right, let's make this more interesting, I shoot the bottles, you shook the mechs between the eyes, we switch after each shot."
Without bragging about her lead over him she acknowledged with a wave of her fingers; her eyes never leaving the scope. As the rest of the mechs poured in they would take turns, each taking two shots, quickly following each other. They were quickly filling up the place with spent heat sinks, but they were both too busy to notice that. The poor hapless mechs didn't even get halfway through their pre-programmed greetings before their lost their heads and spouted out "error ERROR!" in surprised protest at the betrayal.
Their viper rifles allowed them to make their way through the mechs at a pace that would drop the jaws of any fire team. They started to clear the mechs before the poor things could even toss their bottles. Eventually the two began to shoot the bottle straight out of the hands of the mechs, followed by their heads.
Once the last mech fell both dropped their rifles in sync and took a much needed breath. Shepard looking over and laughing at him, unable to deny what a good time that was.
"We allowed to break those?" She asked.
"Hmm, Don't think so… I think we should get out of here now." He said like some kind of teenager breaking curfew.
As they got up she caught out the corner of her eye a swarm of drones hovering in.
They weren't quite don't yet.
Garrus laughed as he turned to her again, holding two high-capacity pistols. "Now, we both know you can shoot, and your dancing depends on me for anything pos—well, you know. But what I've been wondering is If you can dance AND shoot." He handed her a pistol and couldn't help but smirk at the look on her face. If he surprised her with the shootout, he was knocking her off her feet with this overtime.
"Where did you—" she began, "just some… contacts new and old. They're good with this stuff, and they owe me a few favors.. You know… good deeds and all that." he said smoothly, referring to some people from Omega, and the keepers. All of which were able to get this together for him faster than he had hoped.
With a tap of his fingers, some tango music turned on, the same song as before, and Garrus offered out his free hand while holding his pistol up with his other. Shepard shook her head again with an entirely satisfied smirk, and grabbed his hand, he swung her around and she twirled in close to him then as she stopped spinning, she took aim and fired at one of the drones which were holding bottles beneath them. The bottle shattered and Garrus spun them around, reaching and shooting at another drone, hitting it right where it would shatter the bottle and destroy the drone.
"Show off" Shepard muttered, as she took three quick shots matching the tempo of her footwork against his. They danced, shooting targets as they passed. The two twirled across the floor to the music sharing a feeling of euphoria. Their shooting dancing combo continued with only the two of them this time. Shooting at the drones seemed better than the impressed crowd of last time to Shepard. And the whole thing was absolutely magical as she swung in close again to him, feeling his breath as he guided her across the floor. As the music died down and the targets ran out, they lowered their guns and stared at each other, his gaze above hers.
"So… I honestly forgot to pick up fresh lines so… are you impressed yet?" He said, befuddled at his own short sight of the all important romantic lines.
"Hah, yea. This was unexpected… I… shit, I got nothing either, just kiss me." And she dropped her gun and brought her hand up to the back of his head and brought him in for a kiss.
They held there for a long moment. Letting it last as long as it stylishly could. Eventually they pulled their faces away and Garrus had one last thing, the grand finale. Something he hoped she would appreciate, and with a lot less shooting.
"Now. How about dinner? I hear that's a classic thing for old human couples to do." He said. Even though he was well aware turians did that as well.
"Now were talking, what restaurant?" she asked. A quick smirk and a twitch of his head and she knew she would have to wait.
"Oh, and you'll need these" He wrapped some blindfolds over her eyes, and assured her would guide her safely to their final stop in his plan.
Taking her hand he guided them out of their shooting range and down towards the Silversun strip which was only a short ten minute walk away.
"Alright, here we are" Garrus said as he sat her down and took her blindfold off. They were sitting at the only table in the entire restaurant situated right in the middle. Off to the corners, the chefs and waiters were waiting. There was no one else in the entire place, which had an open view to the rest of the Silversun strip's glittering lights. Shepard recognized the place, she remembered falling through the fishtank of this exact place on the old Citadel.
She stared across at him her face, unloyal to a single emotion and she said "Didn't think they would let me back here"
"I was able to convince them we'd do all out shooting beforehand and that you wouldn't wreck the place for a second time. It wasn't easy, I really had to work at sounding convincing." He said, then with a quick look at the layout of the table added "I mean… I hope this is alright, best place there is… Bought out the whole place… well, they wanted to give it to me gratis but..— I hope the candle aren't too much, I had hoped that—" "Shhhh… this is… this is Perfect" she said, giving him that smile again.
Garrus relaxed quickly and their night ensued. They started the sushi Shepard was never able to try, and Garrus was able to try some turian-friendly dishes that were designed after popular human foods. They ate until they were stuffed, and talked late into the night, and went through bottle after bottle of the best wines the place had to offer. Eventually after a few desserts they thanked the staff and made their way over to Shepards apartment, which was perfectly decked out for the remainder of their romantic valentines filled evening.
Garrus had set up the hot-tub with more candles and another bottle of wine and they started there and made their way to the bedroom. By then they were sufficiently exhausted that as soon as they hit the mattress at odd angles, they practically passed out. Waking up the next day only to find that through their self-induced coma they had found each others embrace. Even after they were both awake they just held there and watched as the artificial sun from the apartment windows gave the effect of a morning sunrise.
Everything had gone off perfectly, and Garrus couldn't be happier. They stayed in bed until their stomachs protested them to get up. they threw on some PJ's and went to the kitchen to cook each other breakfast. They ate together at the table before prepping to head back to the Normandy to continue the rest of their day.
When they arrived EDI took Shepard away to speak about the 'Fantastic night' She had with joker, and to ask Shepard all of her details like the two good friends they were. Sol caught Garrus at the elevator on the way to the forward battery and he allowed her some of the details, but was sure to savor much of it for himself. Keeping it all in so there would always be some of it left when he needed it. And throughout the rest of the day he kept thinking back to their night and he kept humming a happy tune while working away. Thinking all the while….
Valentines… Next year will be even better.
THE END — Thank you for reading!
Happy Valentines Followers! Hope you all had a fantastic Valentines and that you all found your Shepard/Vakarian!