Double Monday: The Double, Chapter 44

The Sins of the Mother

Jacob and I saw the women and what few men could be coaxed out of hiding into the shuttle the transport had sent. All of them were crying and some seemed as much afraid as relieved. I imagine nine years of chemically-induced forgetfulness would make any new and strange experience a little scary.

The woman who’d given me the datapad wrung my hand awkwardly, not quite able to shake it normally but knowing some such gesture was appropriate. It gave me hope that they could recover. “You brought us the sky,” she said, “just like he promised.”

I nodded solemnly at her. “I will remember,” she said insistently. Then she turned and shuffled up the ramp. She lifted her hand briefly before disappearing inside and I realized I didn’t even know if she knew her own name any more than I did.

Swingin' Saturday: The Swing of Things, Chapter 8

The weeks passed quickly. Kaidan and the others found a real groove in rehearsal and spent more time together outside the practice room as well. Despite his enjoyment of his day-to-day duties he hadn’t pursued much of a social life since his last shipboard assignment. The Alliance discouraged fraternizing with subordinates and, under normal circumstances, he simply didn’t see other officers much.

He found himself out for raucous evenings with the others. Jenkins warmed up slowly, intimidated by the ranking officers and the age difference, but he turned out to have a talent for imitation that kept the group in stitches over drinks.

Pressly acted as the perfect foil for Joker’s derisive sense of humor, a straight man with a face of iron. Kaidan was never sure whether he truly didn’t understand the pilot or just loved egging him on for comment after sarcastic comment. Even Dr. Chakwas showed up from time to time, sipping a glass of wine and smiling indulgently at the hi-jinks of her band. Some nights Kaidan felt more like he was living out a classic vid from the 1940s rather than his own life.

An Obituary for My Commander Shepard

Picture, if you will, the dedication of a memorial to Commander Shepard in her absence after she’s saved the galaxy. This is both a picture of her as she lives in my head (at least one version of her) and a complete and utter spoiler of the Mass Effect series as a whole. Remember: this comes from the perspective of a person on Earth when the ending happened.

Shepard was the Chuck Norris of her century, guns and all. Sure, all of those touching emotional scenes in the games made for a more-human hero. She could have love affairs and close friends, could be affectionate and even playful.

But Commander Shepard, as the Mass Effect series plays out, can’t be those things at heart. Shepard had no well-connected mother out there, easing her path up the ranks. She grew up on the streets, tough as nails and twice as hard. She paid for everything she ever won, one way or another. Even my fail-Shep was six kinds of epic but she had a terrible, heart-wrenching time of it in Mass Effect 3. This eulogy is for her. I don’t know who’s giving it but apparently he knew her well.

Double Monday: The Double, Chapter 43

Daddy Know Best?

Naturally I ordered Joker to head straight for the Citadel, it being essentially next door. Once I’d changed back into my BDUs and thrown my armor in the wash I thought I’d visit Jacob. Hopefully his little display in the shuttle bay had only been an aberration.

When I walked into the armory, he turned from cleaning my sniper rifle. “What were you doing, bashing mechs to death?” he complained good-naturedly.

“That may have happened once or twice,” I laughed. “We were rather outnumbered.”

He set the Viper to one side. “I’m glad you came down,” he said gravely. Ah, crap, I thought, he’s going to bring it up.

ME3 Guest Post Fic: Longing

Today's fic comes from the lovely Acidqueen of BioWare Social Network fame. As the contents are explicit and inappropriate to those of you who are under 18 or happen to be easily shocked or embarrassed, as ever I ask that you not click the "Read More" button or scroll down to see the delicious details.

Longing was inspired by a Kaidan sketch from diraemythos. Most of her work is more R-rated than NC-17 but this particular piece is definitely not something you want your boss, your kids, or you mom seeing over your shoulder. You've been warned!


Kaidan sighs. He reaches over to touch the button on the sound system...and smells her as his nose mashes into her pillow.

The scent is intoxicating, and memories flood back to him. Their first night, her visits during his hospitalization after Mars, their reunion after the Udina Coup. He breathes in deeply, then rolls onto his back, alone with his thoughts.

Mass Effect 3 and Tali's Face

Commander Shepard and Garrus Vakarian can’t have babies because they’re of different species and neither is an Asari. Believe me, I’m not one of those people who wants their Shep to retire and start popping out the kids so I’m okay with that. But that wasn’t my point.

If they could, the kid might look like a what BioWare shows as a Quarian in Mass Effect 3: human face, Turian arms and legs. And that’s why I think Tali’s face in ME3 is a bunch of bullshit. I love a lot of things about Mass Effect, obviously, but even though I don’t much care for the character their “reveal” of her face disappointed me.

Can Tali look humanoid? Certainly. Lore has all of the aliens (except the Keepers and the Hanar) looking more or less human. She’s got boobs, for heaven’s sakes, something apparently universal to all species except Krogan and, perhaps, female Salarians and Turians. As I’m not sure we ever saw one of the latter two I can’t really say.