A/N: THIS IS THE FINAL CHAPTER! Yeah, I know you were expecting something longer, but... I just don't have any more ideas for this story, guys. I hope you enjoy the last part of this one, though, and I hope you're looking forward to the sequel. Allons-y!
"Tali?" Shepard asked, gently nudging the quarian nestled against him. "Tali, are you awake?"
"Hmph..." She muttered, snuggling deeper into his chest. "A little..." She managed to say before yawning quietly.
"It's time for you to get back into your suit." He motioned toward the clock on his wall. "Your antibiotics are going to wear off shortly."
"Mmm... I don't... I don't want to get up." She protested and wrapped one of her arms around him, sighing happily. "I want to stay here with you forever."
"Tali." The human spoke in a soft but stern voice, and rested his hand on her shoulder. She opened one eye to look at him, brow raised inquisitively. "The longer you stay out of your suit, the longer it'll be before we can get you out of it again."
She remained silent for a minute before she finally sighed. "Fine, fine... you little bosh'tet." She spoke in a teasing voice, raising her head and brushing aside her raven hair. "You know exactly what to say, Shepard."
"What can I say? I'm the Paragon of Humanity." He chuckled and got up with her, reaching down for a piece of her suit. "Y'know, I swear one of these days I'm gonna learn how to help you put this on."
Tali bit her lower lip, giving her best seductive look. "I think I'd prefer it if you were to learn how to take it off first."
Shepard raised both eyebrows. "Ooh... yes, ma'am." He smirked.
The two of them got dressed in silence after that, and it understandably took Tali a lot longer to put her suit on than it took for Shepard to don his uniform. Eventually, they were both finished.
"Hey, Tali?" Shepard asked, stepping toward her.
"Hm?" She spun to face him, smiling as always.
"I was wondering... is there a..." He stopped suddenly, realizing something. There was no way to ask this casually. "Tali... is there a quarian custom regarding... marriage?"
She shook her head for a moment. "I don't think I know that word, Shepard. What does it mean?"
He sighed deeply, and took her into his arms. "Marriage is when two people... join together. Not sexually, just... spiritually, like..."
"You mean like a bonding ceremony?" Tali asked, and after a singular moment, her eyes widened. "Keelah, Shepard. Are you asking me to... bond with you?"
"Well, I..." He rubbed the back of his head. "Yeah, I suppose I am."
Tali didn't move. She just stood there, her hands at her sides. After what seemed like an eternity, her entire body began to shake. "Y... Yes, Shepard!" She squealed at the top of her lungs, flinging herself at her boyfriend. "I want to spend the rest of my life with you!"
They remained like that for at least ten minutes, holding each other while Tali sobbed into Shepard's chest. He knew that they could never be married, not while the Reapers were still a threat. But maybe after, they could find a place to settle down together. And if there was one thing he was certain of, it was that they would survive the trials to come. Because they loved each other, and that was all that mattered.
Hey, guys. Let me clear up a few things here. I wrote this entire damn thing while suffering from writer's block. So if you think the writing was bad, just remember... this was honestly the best I could do. At any rate, please leave a review, and be sure to follow me for a notification of when the sequel's up. Keelah se'lai!