Steel flashes, a throat is rent and blue blood sprays through the air, staining the skin of my cheeks. Flesh churns and erupts, revealing glowing cybernetics in the twisted mockery of a skeleton. A deep, bass thrum rings through my head, an ancient red sun burning my eyes. Like chaff in a tornado, an inexorable grasp pulls me through the infernal orb, deep into the core as it turns black and begins to collapse in on itself.

The grasp tightens, the breath being crushed from my lungs, my eyes bulging, on the verge of exploding out of their sockets even as the darkness becomes absolute. Then, with the rolling of thunder, four bright lights pierce the abyssal black, lighting the empty void with gold.

YOU EXIST BECAUSE WE ALLOW IT

The voice thunders through my head, reverberating inside of my skull, my brain pounded into jelly. Shards of black impale my head, releasing metal liquid that mixes with the cerebral jelly of my mind, enhancing it, turning it into clay. Invisible hands reach through bone and knead the clay, shaping it with gentle fingers and caring caresses. I exist because I am allowed.

YOU WILL END BECAUSE WE DEMAND IT

The caress becomes crushing, the fingers twisting into an iron fist, black-stained clay dribbling out of the hand. My existence is nothing. My existence is empty. My existence must end.

"Ah, ah, ah."

Something thin, slick and cool, slips inside, casually smacking the hand away, the writhing appendage easily shaping my brain into it's former state, the black-taint becoming grey. The tentacle moves with familiarity, as if it's done this a millions times before.

"My tOy."

I gasp, air rushing into my lungs, my eyes flying open. What the fuck was that?! I don't remember all of it, but I clearly recall seeing Saren slash his throat with my knife. I fucking knew that would be in my nightmares, I called it!

I just don't remember what happened afterwards, only that it freaked me the fuck out. Something squirms in my arms and I nearly jump, only to relax upon realizing that it's just Zaira and I'm squeezing the shit out of her. Letting go, her uncomfortable grunts fade into soft snores and incomprehensible mumbling. Her face, slack and soft in sleep, banishes the remainder of my nightmare, and I calm down enough to feel the cold sweat beading on my forehead.

Sweaty and holding Zaira tight, but not for the usual reasons. It doesn't bode well that even sleeping with her isn't enough to drive the nightmares away like it usually does. But then again, it's been two days since Sovereign got face-fucked by us in the Council Chambers, then space-fucked by Joker outside of them, and that isn't long enough to get over the whole deal.

But the satisfaction of succeeding, of actually beating Sovereign and the Geth and not dying while doing it, is a nice first step. It's always good to start off on a strong foot, and this is going to be a long race.

…But this is the second night in row I've woken up in a cold sweat, and I want it to fucking stop.

Slipping out of bed and padding to the bathroom across plush carpet, I turn the sink on and splash my face with cold water. The face that looks back at me is tired but stoic, determined and in need of a shave. Then it looks surprised when a familiar presence of warm static returns, bringing with it the knowledge that Jade had returned from whatever she'd been doing the last couple of days.

"Jade?" I whisper aloud, arching an eyebrow. "You there?"

Hmm? Is her tired reply. Yeah, I'm here, I was just checking up on a few things. Tevos wants to meet with you, by the way.

"Okay, good to know. But there's something else I want to know: Have you been avoiding me?" It's technically hard to do, given that her physical self is implanted in the back of my head, but when you live in an Extranet-connected galaxy and you're an AI, it's not that hard.

I-um-well, that is to say, uh, I wouldn't call it…She stammers an impressively long time, for someone who can run a hundred detailed battle simulations while taking notes in a few minutes, before sighing and giving up. Yeah.

"Why?" I ask, before pausing because I just looked at myself in the mirror while I said. Someone comes in here, sees me talking to myself in the mirror, I'd have to do some explaining…even though the only people who could are ones who know me. Still feels weird, though, and I don't want to sit on the toilet, so I step into the empty bathtub and sit my ass down. "Let's talk face-to-face."

My omni-tool flashes and Jade coalesces in my cupped hands, her knees pulled up to her chest and her long hair curtaining her face. "So…" She mumbles, brushing her hair out of her face.

"So…" I reply, fulfilling the customary greeting dance of people who are being awkward. "What's up, Jade? Why are you avoiding me?"

Jade sighs, flopping back in my hands. "Sovereign…when you were fighting it, I…I couldn't do anything. There weren't any Geth I could take over, there weren't any systems I could hack…and when I did try to hack it directly, it brushed me aside like I wasn't even there." She sighs again, even more explosively than before. "I all I could do was watch…and be useless."

That is a feeling I am all too familiar with. "I can't offer you any platitudes, Jade," I reply with a shrug, "There was really nothing you could do. So, how do we go about fixing it? We've already got a combat body in the works for you, but is there anything else you can think of? Some upgrade to my armor that lets you fight with me?"

Her brows furrow in thought, her lips moving soundlessly. "Maybe I could…that would increase the power draw on the battery…I could up the detection range on the sensor suite…and get around to actually installing a more advanced sensor suite, but that does give me some ideas." Jade smiles warmly up at me, her previous melancholy completely gone. "Thanks, Saul."

"No problem, Jade," I give her a tired wink. Even my thoughts are getting sleepy now, dammit. Fuggin nightmares. Fuggin Reapers givin' me nightmares…

Jade's smile fades slightly. "Nightmares keeping you up?" She asks gently.

"Yeah…" My reply is cut short by a jaw-cracking yawn. "They are. I keep seeing Saren killing himself, his flesh boiling away, and staring into Sovereign's eyes. Every time, I get pulled into a red sun and come face-to-face with Sovereign, his voice drowning out everything. It's a friggin' downer, man."

"Have you thought about getting a brain scan to check for Indoctrination?" My AI companion questions quietly, rubbing the side of my hand. I can't feel it, but I appreciate the thought.

"Mmhm," I mumble, taking a hand away to rub my eyes. "I've been planning to get everyone scanned for any mind-fuckin'. Speaking of, how's clean up going? Did the Turians manage to sneak away one of Sovereign's main cannons?"

"Not yet," she shrugs, rubbing her hands together. The streams of data covering her body flash twice, the back of my skull tingling pleasantly, "Tevos and Councilor Valern pushed for any salvage operations on the Reaper to be done through mech proxies, and with our data on Indoctrination, no one raised any complaints. The Ambassadors and Anderson did ask for a large share of the salvage rights though, given that most ships destroyed were Alliance."

"I'd like to find out how the shields work," I reply, already thinking of ways you could apply shields that could take such a beating. "It took us killing Sovereign's puppet to drop them, and they stood up to a constant barrage of cannon fire before. Makes me wish-"

DING.

"-gah! Jesus!" I rub my ringing ears, trying to sooth the pain the sudden noise caused. Jade looks up at me in confusion.

"What?" She asks cluelessly.

"What, you didn't hear that loud ding just now?" The ringing isn't going away. Am I getting tinnitus?

"I did, but it wasn't that loud," she replies, before shrugging. "Then again, I'm not the one sitting around in an empty bathtub. Are you gonna answer that? It might wake Zaira up."

Oh, my omni-tool's chiming. That's where the ringing is coming from, not my head. Man I'm tired. "Oh hey, it's a message from…them." I was wondering when they'd respond. "Seems like they want to meet. 'Two days. Behind the third planter to the left, outside Skola's Cafe, Tayseri Ward, 12:03 pm. Come invisible.'"

"Sounds clandestine," Jade murmurs, brushing her hair out of her face. "If it's not on the level, at least I'll be there to help. Still, the Citadel? That's where they want to meet? Right under the Council's nose?"

I shrug, restraining another yawn. "It's the best place for it, if you think about it. The only time people really look under their nose, it's in the mirror. No one would expect them to be there, and that makes it the best hiding spot. Though, I do doubt all of them are going to be there; they haven't lasted this long by being reckless."

"True enough," Jade agrees, a small smile growing on her lips as I yawn again. "You should try to go back to sleep. Tevos wants to see you later, and I've got a feeling that it's going to be a long day."

"Alright, I'll try," I reply, getting up out of the tub and shaking my legs, "Talk to you later, sweetheart."

Her form disperses in a flurry of green particles and I exit the bathroom to find Zaira still on the bed, but her face is twisted into a grimace, distressed grunts and strangled groans escaping through her lips. Tough as she is, even Commander Shepard gets nightmares.

I slip in next to her, wrapping an arm around her shoulders while my hand cups her cheek, stroking smooth skin. Her face softens, though not entirely, and her nose scrunches slightly in a way I've discovered means she's about to wake up. Sure enough, a few seconds later, her eyes flutter open and fix on my own. Zaira releases a quiet groan, turning her head to nuzzle my hand. "Bad dreams waking you up, too?"

I hum in agreement, pressing a soft kiss to her cheek. "It's damned annoying," I mutter, playing with a few strands of her hair. "And I've got to meet with someone later, which will take up most of my day, sorry."

"Mm, and here I was hoping you'd spend all day with me, Chloe, Liara, Tali and Maria or whatever her name is," she mumbles, reaching a hand up and running her fingers along my jaw. "Trying on dresses and cooing about how pretty they look, chatting about boys and giggling while eating little sandwiches and drinking tea; and then after I feel like wanting to tear my hair out, I'd pull you into one of the dressing rooms and ravage you until I wasn't feeling quite so tense."

"…Well, if you were trying to tempt me, you succeeded," I reply dryly, kissing her lips. "But it's not something I can avoid. I'll make it up to you, tonight, though. Or…right now?" I wiggle my eyebrows suggestively.

Zaira giggles tiredly, poking my chest. "I'd usually be all over that, but not now." Her hand grasps the back of my neck and pulls me down so that I'm somewhat on top of her, my head resting on her chest. "I'm tired, you're tired, and the last thing either of us want is to fall asleep in the middle of sex."

I nod sagely. "That would literally be an anti-climax. And I do like holding you."

"Win-win," she murmurs sleepily, nuzzling the top of my head, her heartbeat quickly lulling me back to sleep.

The ship that picks me up is of Asari design and unadorned; one of thousands milling around the floating remains of Sovereign along with the Human, Turian and Salarian salvagers. It takes about thirty minutes for the ship to hit the Mass Relay due to all the relief coming in, and I've just settled in for the two-hour journey when the door opens and in comes one of the pilots.

Her hands reach up and disengage the seals, pulling away the helmet to reveal Tevos underneath. "Surprise!" she greets with a smile, taking a seat next to me and exhaling mightily, "Not that you don't deserve it, but I'm jealous that you get to relax. I think I've gotten maybe…five hours of sleep? In the last couple of days. I'm used to it, but a girl needs a break every once in awhile."

"You did kinda sign up for it, what with all the building and consolidating power you've been doing behind the scenes for…what? Four years, now?" I reach out and wrap an arm around her shoulders. "But yeah, you deserve a break."

She sighs, slumping against me. "Funny thing is, without Jade, it would've been a lot worse. That AI is a lifesaver."

"You don't have to tell me twice," I say, and we sit quietly, watching the swirling blues of the massless corridor carrying us to our destination. I break it a moment later, because I have an important question on my mind. "So, how many people died?"

Tevos sighs again. "We don't have an exact number; a good amount of people blew the Evacuation Drill off as an attempt by us to flex our power on the unwashed masses, but the rough estimation is around ten thousand civilians, four thousand C-Sec, and six thousand Alliance personnel."

I frown, feeling a heavy block of guilt settling in my stomach. "That sounds like a lot of people…"

"Believe me, I would've preferred the number to be zero," she says quietly, her fingers tapping out a random rhythm on my arm. "But, compared to what it could've been, say hundreds of thousands or even millions of deaths, twenty thousand is honestly amazing."

"And it's a drop in the ocean compared to what would've happened if Sovereign had succeeded," I reply tiredly. I hate thinking about that.

"True. But, because of you, we put a stop to it, the Council's acknowledging the Reapers, and we're building an initiative to fight back," Tevos murmurs, throwing a leg over my lap and straddling me, her eyes sultry.

"Not just me," I feel the need to point out. "You did a lot of it, Jade did a whole bunch, and the rest of the team helped. I was just there, honestly."

"…Right," she says slowly, like she doesn't believe a word I'm saying and is just humoring me. "But they're not here, are they? And I feel the need to reward you…" Her lips descend on mine, her tongue pushing through to wrestle with my own.

"You know," I comment, separating from her with a pop, "You don't have to come up with some pretense, if you want to have sex because you're stressed and glad to be alive, you can just say it. I'm the last person who'd judge you for it."

"Some of us like the song and dance, you know," Tevos murmurs, reaching into a pouch and withdrawing something. "Besides, the sex isn't the reward…well, not all of it." She dangles the object in front of me, and it takes a few seconds for my eyes to make out the letters.

"Medi-gel laced lubricant…" My eyebrows shoot up. "When did you even get time to gossip with Aelida? I don't think you've been alone for more than a minute!"

The Asari Councilor smirks. "Bitch please, we're Asari. We can gossip at the speed of thought. A brief shake of the hand and bam, thirty minutes of conversation just occurred. So, do you want to chat," She reaches up hits a switch, the bench unfolding out into a bed, "Or do you want to stick me 'til I squeal?"

My fingers work to open her tight-fitting suit, plucking the pack from her hands and setting it aside. "And just what's so bad about cuddling?" I reply, kissing her gently even as I pull the top of the suit away. I'm working as fast as I can but that's just not fast enough for Tevos, because she pushes away from me and the bed, hurriedly peeling the Commando leathers off and dropping them on the floor.

Instead of jumping back on, like I expect, she instead leans against the window and beckons me to come get some with a smirk. I oblige eagerly, stepping out of my armor, shedding my clothes and taking her in my arms, pressing her back against the cool glass as our lips and bodies meet. The heat emanating from her core is enticing, so with little fanfare I hike up one of her legs and bury myself inside her in one smooth motion.

Tevos moans into my mouth, pushing into my thrusts and wrapping her other leg around me, one of her hands threading through my hair. Leaving her mouth, I trail my lips down her throat and suck on junction of her neck and shoulder, undoubtedly leaving a nice dark hickey on her blue skin. She wears high collars, it'll be fine.

My mouth finds her breasts and I lick and nibble and suck, taking one of her nipples with my lips and lathering it with my tongue. Her legs flex as she pushes away from the window, my back hitting the bed as she takes the leading role, dropping down on my length with quiet but forceful wet smacks.

I reach out blindly, eventually grabbing the packet of lube and tearing it open. Dipping my fingers in the cool gel, I trail my thumb down her spine until I reach her other entrance. Or exit, as it were. Tevos groans sexily, her sex tightening around my length as I slip two fingers inside her, working the gel into her hot, dry walls and adding more until I'm satisfied it'll be comfortable. As comfortable as it can get, anyway.

Around the fifth time, she lets out a low, keening wail and slams down, her walls fluttering around me even as her teeth dig into the flesh of my shoulder. The small spike of pain mixed with all the pleasure is the last straw, and I pull her against me tightly with my free hand and empty myself inside her, stars exploding behind my eyelids.

When I come back, Tevos is nuzzling the side of my neck, lightly pecking my skin. "Got another one in you?" She asks lowly, her face flushed and smiling.

"Of course I do," I murmur, stroking her sweaty back and feeling my heart return to its normal rhythm. "Just give me a minute."

Apparently, that's a minute too long, since she lays one last kiss on my neck before moving down and taking my softening length in her mouth. A few seconds later I'm back to full hardness and raring to go. "Nevermind, we're back in business."

She rolls off me and onto the bed, her front flat on the cushion with her rear raised. Blood rushes to my head when I stand up but it fades quickly, and I grab the depleted packet of lube and apply the last bit to myself. As I stand behind her, Tevos curls around to look at me with glittering eyes and a smirk, and I hope she doesn't blame me if her back hurts.

My hands grasp her hips as I push forward, the tip meeting resistance for a moment before sliding in until my thighs are flush against hers. Tevos lets out a quiet little coo, her muscles flexing around me, and I can't help the groan that escapes my mouth. It's not my first time doing anal, see five chapters ago, nor is it my second or third, but since that's my most recent memory I have to compare it to when I did it with Aelida.

It's not as painfully tight and not as scorching hot, but damn does it feel good. Her muscles ripple around my length, pulling me back in even as I pull out, thrusting forward with a grunt and a quiet smack. Whispered encouragement around impacting flesh sets the pace and to be honest I don't hear most of it, lost in the sensations.

"A little harder, please," Tevos asks politely and I oblige, her body rocking on top of the bed. I can feel my end coming closer and I'm determined not to finish alone, reaching a hand around to give her nether lips a good stroking only to find that she's practically dripping. Right, I forgot that Tevos is a little bit kinky and a stressed politician. My fingers find the bundle of nerves above her lips and give it a little rub and a pinch and she cries out in pleasure, her walls clamping down around me even as I add another batch of filling, if you see what I mean.

I fall against her back, sweating and panting and quite a bit sticky, but very much satisfied. I open my mouth to say something pithy, probably about being skilled at alternative conflict resolutions when the comms. chime and a female voice comes over. "If you're done having sex, we're thirty minutes out."

Shit, I forgot about the other pilot and by the way Tevos tightens around me, so did she. It has the opposite effect that usually does, though, since I'm still buried inside her and that is not dead which can eternal lie and all that. "Thirty minutes," she mutters, rolling her hips and getting a shudder from me. "Just enough time for one more round in the shower."

After getting clean, we emerge from the bathroom and dress just as the ship docks inside another. Stepping into the larger ship, I find that the aesthetics are quite pleasing, being a nice blend of human efficiency, asari curves and turian utilitarianism, colored pleasant blues and whites with a splash of purple here and there.

Technicians and the like bustle about, all wearing similar colors on jackets and jumpsuits, hurried conversations interrupted to give nods our way. We come into the viewing section, nothing more than a good-sized room with a few chairs and some snacks, along with a huge-ass window peering out into a cloud of soft blue and yellow nebula.

As impressive as that view is, what's inside the nebula with us is even more impressive. A massive ship, sixteen kilometers from stem to stern, more decks and floors than you could shake a stick at, enough room for millions of people…or one massive army.

The front is flat and slightly curved, the whole being somewhat blocky except for the top and bottom, which looks a bit like two Ward arms from the Citadel with a ship wedged between them. Those sections are colored a dark bluish-grey with a glossy shine, while the rest is a muted off-white with a long streak of blue and purple down the side.

I can recognize the designs I dreamed up and Jade made viable, though the Ward-looking parts are new, but not unwelcome. "Wow," I breathe, feeling an entirely non-sexual swelling in my heart. This…this is home base. This is where Titan can really become reality.

"It's quite impressive, isn't it?" Tevos asks, and I turn to agree, only to pause. Tevos isn't the one who asked me that, it's someone else. A human woman, to be precise. Her skin is Asiatic, though only faintly around her eyes, which are a deep, sharp brown. Her hair is black and cut short, a few errant bangs brushing her forehead.

Her face is very serious but also youthful, with a mischievous shine in her eyes. "It's always nice to see your hard work appreciated." Tevos chuckles in agreement.

"Who are you?" I ask, feeling left out of some major news.

The woman looks downtrodden for a second, but I can't imagine why, though she does recover quickly, sticking out a hand. "Jien Garson." Her grip is firm but not too tight, and I look through my memories, trying to recall where I'd seen the name.

"You're some kind of eccentric billionaire, right?" Is my next question, finally recalling where I'd seen the name. It was on the list of the Galaxy's richest people, when we were looking for connections to Kellen Edwards. I think she was sinking all her money into some kind of new ship, maybe?

"Not so much of a billionaire, these days, and I'd like to think of myself as more pragmatic than eccentric," she replies warmly. "If I wasn't, I doubt Tevos would've approached me."

At my questioning look, Tevos shrugs. "What, you think I only went to the Matriarchs Council? We may be Asari, but we can't do everything, especially pulling ships and resources out of thin air."

I turn back to Garson. "And you just happened to have a whole bunch of ships and resources lying around?" I ask incredulously. That kind of luck just doesn't exist.

Her face darkens. "I was planning an expedition through dark space to the Andromeda Galaxy, actually," she sighs, running a hand through her hair. "But, after Tevos showed me her memories, I decided to put my resources into Titan and Project: ORBIT instead."

An expedition through dark space? Talk about big dreams. I can respect that. "Why, though? With the Reapers now exposed, I think more people would be signing up to vacate this Galaxy right quick."

"That's true, but let me answer you with a question," She takes a deep breath, peering into my eyes searchingly. "Back then, before all this…Did you ever hear about something called the Andromeda Initiative? At all?"

Her face is hopeful, and I feel bad when I rack my brain and find exactly nothing, not even a hint about something like that existing. "Jade, do you remember me ever mentioning something like that?" I ask aloud, and Garson's face falls.

"Sorry, but you never did," Jade replies, her form coalescing on a nearby projector. I'd been wondering what that was for.

The woman shakes herself, sighing deeply. "Sorry," I apologize, feeling guilty about crushing her hopes.

"It's not your fault my lifelong dream failed so badly that no one ever spoke of it," she replies morosely. This woman may be a stranger, but she's helped Titan and I pretty much just stepped on her dreams. I reach out and put a comforting hand on her shoulder, and she smiles slightly. "At least I know. Saul Dewitt, all my resources are at your disposal. If we can't escape this Galaxy, we can damn sure keep it safe."

"Damn right," I agree, and Tevos smiles. "You know, after we kick the Reaper's asses, because we definitely will, we won't really need Orbit anymore. We could repurpose it into something that could travel to another Galaxy. You could still have your dream…just backed by Titans instead of the Alliance."

She stares at me, her head tilted quizzically, before she flashes a dazzling grin my way. "I can see why Tevos likes you," she says with a wink. "The possibility is a long way off, past a very bloody and uncertain future, but there is still hope. Thank you."

I nod encouragingly, giving her a thumb's up. "No problem, Garson. Making ladies happy is what I'm best at." I turn back to look at Orbit. "So, what're the specs on this big beautiful bitch?"

"If all the space was dedicated to caring for the population, Orbit could safely hold up to ten million people, and half again on military rationing," Garson explains. "As it is now, it can hold six million personnel, including science staff and maintenance, with several decks dedicated to biological, cybernetic, technological and mechanical laboratories, training facilities, foundries and armories. Given enough time, we could raise an army that would give the Turians pause."

Even though I'm resisting the urge, I still rub my hands together and cackle. "Excellent," I whisper. "Everything's falling into place."

"And now it's time to knock over the first domino," Tevos says solemnly, turning on her omni-tool. "Jade?"

"Final checks have been made, secondaries and tertiaries are in place," my AI Companion replies firmly, her arms folded behind her back.

"All lights are green," Garson adds, her own omni-tool glowing. "We're ready to launch."

The Asari Councilor turns to me, her eyes softening. "Saul…without you, none of this would've been possible. This is your project. Is there anything you want to say?"

Something like this needs a speech, doesn't it? Might as well. I nod, and Tevos taps a few buttons. "This is to everyone?" She nods, and I clear my throat. "Alright everyone, this is Saul Dewitt. I'm not one for long, grandiose speeches, not without backing music at least, so I'll keep it short and sweet. The Reapers have kept up their cycle of extinction for billions of years, but it stops now. We Are Titan. This is our time. Let's get this shit started."

Their omni-tools shut off and the lights dim as Orbit begins to move, parting the nebula like a colossus parts spiderwebs, heading towards a dim figure hidden within. A giant ring, large enough that the massive ship's bulk could fit through easily, blue energy crackling along the inside rim. As the ship approaches, the energy flashes and crackles furiously, jumping and dancing through space within the ring, almost forming a portal.

Orbit's nose draws closer and closer until it touches the middle…and then it's gone in a blinding flash of light. My breath catches in my throat. If this fails, if this was all for nothing…I don't know if we could recover.

A minute passes, then more and I'm not sure how long we stand there, waiting with bated breath. Finally, Jade flickers. "Reports are in," she begins solemnly, before throwing her hands up. "Everything is green across the board! The first Galactic Orbit is a success!"

Oh thank fuck, I was just about ready to have a heart attack! Tevos whoops, throwing her arms around me and I can see Garson doing a little jig, the sounds of further celebrations echoing from the rest of the ship. I give the women a hug and get a high-five from Jade, and then we compose ourselves. I say that, but we're all vibrating with excitement.

"I'm glad you got to see this, but there's still more work to be done," Garson says formally, but her eyes are bright and her smile is brighter. "I think we have a very bright future ahead of us, Mr. Dewitt."

I shake her hand, the grin on my face making my cheeks hurt. "Me too. And call me Saul."

"Then call me Jien," she replies, turning to leave before stopping. "By the way, I have a friend who's very interested in your partnership with Jade. Can I give you his contact information? It'd be a big favor to me."

"Yeah, sure," I reply, feeling Tevos' hand gripping mine tightly. After I get the information from Jien, the Asari Councilor and co-Founder of Titan drags me back to the transport, nearly squirming in her seat from excitement. As soon as we hit the Relay back, she jumps from her seat and grabs me by the collar, her lips furiously meeting mine.

"Really?" The co-pilot groans in exasperation, "Again?"

"Lidanya," Tevos growls, "We just made history, and I am extremely turned on. So either shut up or join in, I don't care which."

The co-pilot pulls her helmet off, revealing a cute face with markings similar to the Councilor, but in red. "Really?" she asks incredulously.

Tevos' reply is an almost feral growl. "Yes."

Lidanya shrugs, tossing her helmet on the seat next to her. "Alright, why not?"

A/N: And bam, there it is. Originally I was just going to pile everything together into one mega-chapter, but that was taking too long and I was getting antsy. Plus, I don't like to have more than one sexy scene per chapter.

So, who was surprised to find that the Andromeda Initiative still exists here? I won't lie, I was tempted to ignore it completely but the pragmatic writer in me out-voted the lazy one. And, to be clear, Saul came to the ME-verse in 2012 or 2013, and Andromeda was only teased around 2015; before that, no one had ever heard of it so by his view-point, and Jien Garson's, that meant the Initiative failed so badly no ever mentions it.

And you finally got to see what Project: ORBIT is! Turns out, it's nothing to do with eyeballs or giant eyeballs or even planets, it's a ship that constantly Orbits the Galaxy at FTL, which makes it the perfect getaway/training/laboratory ship. The giant ring, of which there are many hidden around the Galaxy, called 'Accelerator Rings' work about the same as a Mass Relay, but faster. That's all I'm telling you for now, besides the fact that people can't stumble across it.

Also, Orbit: it looks like the Nexus from ME:A, but with the Infinity from Halo 4 in the middle, which is also colored off-white with a purple and blue stripe down the side. I don't know if you can tell, but those are some of my favorite colors. I'm a fan of stark-but-warm aesthetics.

NS: And for those of us who don't know what either of those things look like?

It's a big ship with a rounded top and bottom.

And that's it for this chapter! Next up, a relaxing day, meeting with them, and a wedding! Yay!

Big thanks as always to NorthSouthGorem and Kurogane7, as well as my peeps on the Xbox, meaning Chris, Tom and Austin.

Stay Awesome.

~Soleneus

P.S.: I'm still on the Xbox, and I've even got Destiny 2, so if you wanna play with me online and hear my voice, ask me questions and rez me when I die, I'm Soleneus on Xbox Live. Hit me up!

Stay Awesome Some More!

~still Soleneus