Disclaimer: Bioware owns all. It's true. *nods* I just fill in their blanks.

- - - - - Father and Son - - - - -

- - - - - Chapter 1 : Age 7 - - - - -

He giggled, rolling in the surf as each new wave washed over him. His clothes were sopping, but he didn't care. A child's joyful bliss of existence. The sand was rough on his still-soft plating. When he became an adult, his plates would harden and he wouldn't be able to feel the sand anymore. But that did not matter to him. He lived in the moment, for the joy of the now. The young turian stood, loving the feel of the waves tugging at his legs. He struck at each wave with his favorite stick he always kept, playing a game with himself, awarding himself points for hitting each wave.

"Garrus...Garrus!"

The sound of his name made him forget his game and turn back to the beach, finding a young female turain racing down the beach toward him. His tongue flicked against his sharp teeth. Sneak attack. He dropped to one knee in the surf, end of the stick on his right shoulder, holding it in the way he had seen his father hold a sniper rifle.

"Choom!" he yelled, his shoulder rolling with the "rifle's" kick, "Got you, Audacia!"

She slid to a stop in front of him, sand clouding. "That's not fair!" Audacia growled squeakily, "We weren't even playing, and I'm serious!" Her hands were on her small hips, mandibles flaring, and her amber eyes glinted angrily, "You know that asari girl we were playing with yesterday? Kri'la?"

"Huh? Yeah?" Garrus's grin faded and his earlier happiness was beginning to ebb away, slowly realizing that something was wrong, "What about her?"

"Those bullies are picking on her again! I saw!"

"But, I told them to leave her alone!"

"Well, I guess they didn't listen, huh?"

"Where'd you see them, Audacia?"

"A little back that way, on the road to town." she pointed a talon the way she had come, "Come on, they might really hurt her, but I didn't think I could stand up to them just me."

Garrus joined his friend, running side by side along the beach. Though they were still just children, both possessed the beginnings of the legendary turian speed that could have allowed them to easily outdistance any other sentient species in a race on land. It was only a few moments before they rounded one of the shore cliffs along the beach and found a group of young turian males crowded around an asari girl. She had obviously been pushed down, and a shallow scratch on her forehead was beginning to bleed. Little Kri'la fought back tears as her tormenters continued to tease her.

"Blue freak!"

"Go back to where you came from, alien!"

"Hey, look! It's Vakarian!" One of them called, "You gonna try and help the freak, hero?"

"I told you to leave her alone!" Garrus growled. Even though he was a child and his voice hadn't begun to develop the flanging effect of an adult, his words had a sharp edge to them that caused the other Turians to turn and size Garrus for a fight.

"Why should we listen to you, alien-lover?"

"Watcha gonna do, Vakarian? Take all of us on? Didn't nobody ever teach you how to count? There's five of us against you and your girlfriend."

"You gotta be crazy."

"Go kiss an alien, Vakarian."

The last turian boy aimed a shove at Garrus's chest. The stick hit the sand, forgotten. Time seemed to slow down. He was gone before the other boy's hand reached him. Crouching catlike in the sand, Garrus hooked his leg spur around his attacker's ankle, tripping him. Another turian boy made a grab for him, only to meet Garrus's fist against his mandible.

* * *

"You attacked fellow turians! Not only that, but two boys younger than yourself, one of whom happens to be the son of a Primarch! Do you have any idea how serious this is, Garrus?! People are going to think your mother and I aren't raising you properly!"

Vakarian Sr. glared at his son, vibrant green eyes flashing in anger. Garrus said nothing, only edging farther behind his mother's leg, his mandibles twitched in discomfort, and he avoided his father's eyes.

"Dearest..." Garrus's mother pleaded gently, holding a hand out to her husband, "Garrus was doing what he thought was right. You know very well that those boys were tormenting the asari diplomat's daughter. Garrus was trying to defend his frie-"

"Enough, woman! I won't be second-guessed in my own home! Your attitude toward all of this is going to ruin our son! A turian should never attack another! It goes against the civic duty and tier system that is the heart of our very society!"

He stormed off, snarling and muttering to himself as he went. Garrus's mother breathed something between a sigh of frustration and one of relief. She knelt beside her son and pulled him close in a hug.

"It's alright, little one. I'm proud of you for helping Kri'la."

Garrus nuzzled his head under his mother's chin, against the softer skin of her neck, the same way he had done since he was very small. He wasn't going to cry. He wasn't.

"Why is father so angry...? Did I do the wrong thing?"

"No, my Garrus. You did a good thing. But, your father doesn't like the way you did it. He wants the best for you, little one. He just doesn't know how to show you in a way you can understand."

The young turian wrapped his arms around his mother's shoulders.

"I love you."

And he began to cry.

- - - - - Chapter 1 : Age 7 : End - - - - -

A/N: Oh my goodness, this chapter was such a joy to write! I loved discovering Garrus as a child, and working out his father's reasonings. Honestly, I wanted to pick Garrus up and hug him tight! X3 (His mom did it for me, though.)

Another thing: In my mind, I estimated the asari girl to be about ten years old. To the asari, that would be a very small child.

Garrus's father didn't feature very much in this first chapter. Think of it more as a small introduction to their relationship, and please look forward to future chapters. (The thought of watching little Garrus grow into the Garrus we know and love makes me very happy. I'm really looking forward to exploring his relationship with his father.)

(Yes, I deliberately left "I love you" ambiguous as to which one of them said it.)

As always, any comments left are always read and greatly appreciated! =3