A/N: If you don't care for prologues, then go on and skip ahead. :] It's just mostly for readers who aren't as familiar with Mass Effect as others. (And there are a few) haha

Didn't know what to classify this story as. Pfft. It doesn't matter. The story won't follow the ME2 gameplay once I get a few things out of the way.


The Black Swan Theory: "used to explain the existence and occurrence of high-impact, hard-to-predict, and rare events that are beyond the realm of normal expectations."

A Black Swan Event: 1) must be a surprise to the observer, 2) must have a major impact, 3) relies on human nature to later make up reasons why it happened in the first place.


Miranda was nervous. Or, what she thought was nervousness. Never understanding the emotion before, the extremist group Cerberus operative was new to the feeling. Top operative, that was; she had been of the rare few who answered directly to the boss of Cerberus, the Illusive Man, if there was even anybody else who did. Miranda liked to think she was the only one, though she continually considered the feeling she was his favourite. Nobody knew anything about his background; secrecy was his strongest ally, and with an organization like Cerberus, the Illusive Man would gladly stay quite illusive.

Cerberus had a knack for being notoriously extreme in their operations, going above and beyond. Miranda knew Cerberus did what other governments couldn't, and all for the greater good of humanity.

No, Miranda was nervous about her latest assignment: The Lazarus Project; bringing the saviour of the galaxy, Citadel Spectre, Commander of the best Alliance vessel SSV Normandy SR1: now grounded forever on a planet's surface landscape by destruction via laser, and the man who succeeded in destroying a machine of a species long accepted as myth that threatens all life, John Shepard, back to life, exactly how he was before. Ironically, he was also a man who hated Cerberus with a passion, and constantly violently shut down various Cerberus operations across the galaxy.

The Illusive Man needed Shepard for the fight against the Reapers, the sentient race of machines who are capable of wiping out all life in the galaxy. Considering so, the Illusive Man could have had anyone else, or a vast number of anyone else, that is. But he picked Shepard, the one man who he believed had it all; the one man who could build a team strong enough, and save the galaxy yet again.

Miranda was quite impressed with his achievements, which even included the Star of Terra, and she had been studying everything on him for two weeks now; the man was a hero, a legend. Unfortunately, reading it and interacting with the man himself were completely different aspects. Once the project officially started, Miranda would learn so much more about him, just by piecing Shepard back together.
But Miranda marveled at the Illusive Man's decision in her directing the Lazarus Project. Of course she was the most qualified, Miranda's genetic tailoring practically sailed her way to the top. Why wouldn't she be picked?

More accurately, Miranda marveled at the trust. It finally dawned on her she proved herself completely to Cerberus, that she could get the job done, and Miranda knew she was the Illusive Man's most trusted. Cerberus was all she had; they took her in after Miranda ran away from her controlling father who created her, his 'dynasty', from his own genome, and in return she would use her abilities to aid Cerberus. Protection for a price, Miranda had no issue with the price either. She used her abilities to further aid humanity. The Cerberus operative's genetic modifications made her the best of the best: intellectually, physically, not to mention expertly honed biotics possessable, for a human anyways. Everything Miranda had was fabricated to give her an advantage, an edge. Even her looks were created for that purpose, and she found no reason in denying or hiding any of it anymore.

And given the subject at hand, only the best could bring back a person of Shepard's magnitude from the grave.

Of course, the project would take most likely years, in the shape Shepard was found in. With this project, with what was at stake, Miranda would not risk time over quality. His body was being transported to the facility she was in at that very moment; Shepard had been ejected into space after his ship was brutally attacked, which stood no chance, and his armor had been ruptured, causing him to die of suffocation and sub-zero temperatures. Miranda hadn't seen for herself, though she heard it didn't look good at all and she wouldn't let that deter her in any way.

Regardless of how long it took, how much effort she put in, or what was required, Miranda Lawson, Cerberus operative supervisor of the Lazarus Project, would do anything and everything in her power to bring Commander Shepard back precisely as he was before.

Miranda Lawson would do anything and everything not to fail.