A/N: This is another kmeme fill. It contains smut, but it is also crack fic. If you're irritated by either, or the combination of the two, I suggest looking elsewhere. ;)
The request was: "Commander Shepard and Garrus Vakarian are one of few known successful turian/human couples. After some contemplation, the Council admits decides that a relationship including such well-known individuals is a perfect contribution to the effort of mending the bitterness lingering between the two species since the First Contact War.
They request that Shepard and Garrus participate in improving relations to the public eye. They don't care how it's done or what the couple decide to do, as long as the end product is accessible to the public in some way. Of course, they're expecting a speech or walk-around or something theatrical.
Except that Shepard and Garrus don't like the idea of playing Dr. Phil. The pair loopholes the crap out of the requirements, and ends up striking a deal with a company that produces sex-ed films. Seems easy- wrap that sucker, have some fun, and they don't even have to show their faces!
Catch: The film is strictly educational. No vocals outside of tinny narration, thorough explanation of differences in physiology and why you shouldn't ingest, and goddammit, no twitching or jerking around! It's hard to catch a good stroking motion on film when the receiving party is moving around like that!"
Mid way through writing, I got VH1's "Pop-Up Video" format stuck in my head, so Mordin ended up narrating in that style.
Reviews are always welcome. Thanks for reading!
UPDATE 3/24/2012: As we found out in ME3, Valern (not Sparatus) is the salarian councilor, and the turian councilor is named Sparatus. I've edited the story to reflect that. This story should also now be considered AU, given the events of ME3.
In the Citadel Council's private chambers, Councilor Sparatus sat behind his desk, flexing his mandibles in annoyance. Before him stood his fellow Councilors, and the expressions on their faces worried him.
The human, Anderson, began to speak, but his asari colleague, Councilor Tevos, laid a hand on his arm. Anderson nodded at her, yielding.
"Spectres Shepard and Vakarian have completed the project we assigned them. We wondered if you would like to view the finished product with us."
"What?" snapped Sparatus. "They were to go and...do something to improve turian-human relations. Go on a series of press junkets or a good will tour of the galaxy. How is it that they finished so quickly?"
"I said their project is complete, not that the results have been fully measured. Although we do have some promising preliminary data, as the project was released to the public over the recent holiday."
There was a coolness to her voice. A calculation in her phrasing that he was missing. Ever the mediator, this one. She'd proven her skill many times over, finding middle ground solutions to inflammatory issues, but every once in a while, she'd blindside him. The turian Councilor suddenly knew that this would be one of those times, and he suspected the other two Councilors were at least partly in on it. The salarian was wide-eyed and practically doing a dance step. Anderson was staring straight ahead into space, which humans seemed to interpret as a sign of discipline in the face of discomfort.
Well, if it made Anderson uncomfortable, it couldn't be all bad. Could it?
"I find it disturbing the project was leaked to the public before we could approve it." Sparatus clasped his hands together and leaned forward. "But all right. Let's see it."
"You'll want to clear your schedule for the day," said the salarian. "And clear the furniture out of the middle of your office. It's a holovid."
Room cleared, the Citadel Councilors moved to their chairs, and another alarm bell went off in the back of Sparatus's mind as he resettled behind his desk. Anderson was bolt upright in an overstuffed armchair, his hands gripping the armrests a little too hard. The asari and salarian Councilors were also keeping their distance, each on a separate sofa, facing the center of the room.
"Before we begin," said Tevos, "It may be difficult for you to see this. I ask that you please watch the whole vid, and that you stay to discuss the incoming data regarding this project."
The turian was offended. "I assure you, I've seen a great many unpleasant things in my day. I can watch a simple holovid without fleeing the room at the first sign of carnage, thank you. However many dead bodies Shepard and Vakarian have left in their wake, believe me, I'll be watching and counting."
The salarian tapped his fingers together, the asari nodded, and the human huffed a bit of air out his nose.
The holovid projected a blank stage in the middle of the room. A scarred, aged salarian in a white coat strode out and began to speak.
"Greetings! Dr. Mordin Solus, at your service. Today, my pleasure to present and narrate this educational vid. Hope that it will contribute to improvement of turian and human intercourse." Sparatus snorted. The audio quality wasn't what it could be, or perhaps this Dr. Solus simply had an irritating voice.
As Dr. Solus blathered excitedly about how he was proud to contribute to what until now had been a poorly documented aspect of life in this galaxy, Sparatus grumbled, "So Shepard and Vakarian hired a doctor, who is neither turian nor human, to do their dirty work for them?"
The salarian Councilor stopped his finger tapping to stare at his colleague. "I don't recall turians having a problem with Solus doing dirty work when he helped redesign the genophage."
Oh. That Dr. Mordin Solus.
Anderson made another huffing noise, but was otherwise unreadable. Sparatus returned his attention to the vid.
"...Without further ado: our subjects." The doctor smiled a wicked little smile and stepped out of the vid. A large bed appeared. It had both turian cushions and human pillows, and while Sparatus tried to wrap his head around that, two figures walked into the picture. The Spectres Shepard and Vakarian, each wearing their species' version of... a bathrobe.
Sparatus shot out of his chair, knocking it over. "This is a mockery!" he hissed.
"So you are going to flee at the first sign of carnage, then?" muttered the human.
Sparatus rounded on Anderson at the insult, but his anger deflated; he could see that the human had no desire to be here either, given the subject matter at hand.
Fine. If the human could stick it out, so could he. He righted his chair, slumped into it, and desperately hoped the Spectres were wearing swimming clothes under those robes.
The mismatched pair sat together on the bed and addressed the camera.
"Hello everybody," said Shepard in a businesslike tone that did not match her inappropriate attire. "I'm Jane Shepard, and this is Garrus Vakarian. We've been tasked by the Citadel Council with addressing the state of relations between our species. Let's face it—it could be much better. Turians and humans don't mingle much, and as species, we don't know each other very well. We can do better than that. We have to do better than that."
Here, Vakarian picked up the speech. "So with that in mind, we had to decide how to address the issue head on. A series of workshops on the Citadel? Lectures? Vids? Tours? At first, weren't sure what would have the most impact. So we had our experts run some scenarios, and this is what they determined would work best."
"And actually, their results jibe with our personal experience," continued Shepard, nodding at Garrus. "This educational holovid answers the single most common question we get asked on the street: 'How do you...make it work?'" She grinned, and then added a quick, "Please enjoy."
The two turned toward each other, leaning in and chatting. With a bloop sound, a picture-in-picture bubble popped up, and Solus reappeared to narrate the proceedings.
"Very important!" he pronounced. "Prior to intimate contact, get tested to find out extent of allergic reaction, if any, to opposite proteins. Anaphylactic shock kills romantic mood. Even if both partners not currently allergic, recommend keeping supply of antihistamines on hand. Allergies may manifest at any time. If with casual or new partner, highly recommend use of prophylactic barriers, not ingesting any tissue. Also: communication with partner is key. Not all turians alike. Not all humans alike. Vast range of appetites and proclivities, especially in humans due to greater genetic diversity. Partners should be comfortable discussing what is pleasing and what is not. Prevents...interspecies awkwardness. Promotes healthy relations."
On the bed, Vakarian took Shepard's hands in his while they talked. Shepard smiled at him and twined her many, wormy-looking fingers with his. Vakarian smiled back at her. Sparatus was considering looking away in disgust when Dr. Solus' bubble blooped again, took on an arrow shape, and pointed at the couple's hands. The vid zoomed in.
"Turians: blunt talons before vigorous contact with human skin, unless human partner has expressed desire to have skin cut. Some humans enjoy injury as part of sex play. Most do not. Best to ask, or default to blunt talons when in doubt. Wear gloves if you wish to hide them."
Blunting, once considered deviant, was growing more common these days. It was associated with taking an asari lover, or with a tendency toward submission. In Sparatus's father's day, no self-respecting turian would have been caught dead with dull 'tips. If anything, one sharpened and polished them. Interestingly, Vakarian's talons still appeared sharp, with just the very ends filed to prevent accidental puncture wounds.
"Humans: keep fingernails short to prevent breaking off between turian plates. Can get lodged, cause infection or allergic reaction. Happens most often with false nails. If partner enjoys longer nails—talon play—don't forget that human nails much more brittle, can bend or crack when imitating talons. Painful."
Shepard's nails were cut very short, Sparatus could see. Humans, especially those in the military, did this so that they could "work with their hands," so there was no stigma attached.
The picture zoomed out. Shepard began...kissing Vakarian on the face with those rubbery, suction-y lips. Solus' bubble blooped back into arrow form, and the doctor went over the purpose and significance of lips to humans, and the potential benefits to a turian with a lip-having lover. He then spent time explaining turian habits similar in meaning to the kiss, as Vakarian demonstrated them.
Sparatus's sense of decency was in great pain. A brief glance at Anderson, who now looked satisfyingly unhappy, helped some, but not enough. From this point onward, the vid became a stream of images and information that Sparatus would never, no matter how hard he tried, be able cleanse from his mind:
Close-up shots of Shepard's and Vakarian's aroused "erogenous zones." (Couldn't they have used diagrams?) Solus pointing out the biological history, methods of stimulation, and cultural baggage thereof.
Vakarian lapping at Shepard's neck as she massaged the sensitive skin inside his mantle and between his plates.
Robes now cast aside, Shepard fingering her own sex as Vakarian rolled her nipples between thumb and finger. "Never underestimate utility of nipples in stimulating human arousal. Sometimes works on males too! Remember to ask," announced the ancient salarian. "Do not crush them. Start with light pressure, increase according to partner's wishes."
Vakarian lying back, his plates completely shifted apart and his erection stuffed into Shepard's mouth, as if her face were some kind of auxiliary vagina. "Humans: remember! Turian penis internal, much more sensitive than human male counterpart. Avoid contact with teeth unless specifically instructed to use them by turian partner! Even tongue may be too intense at first. Be gentle. Practice. And. Beware of tissue ingestion."
Shepard with her legs splayed apart as Vakarian rubbed his tongue all over the...what was it? Ah yes, the "clitoris." The human's reaction to this could have been mistaken for a convulsion, were it not for her smile. The doctor droned, "Again. Beware of tissue ingestion. Human females self-lubricate in preparation for penetration."
Vakarian and Shepard licking each others' genitalia at the same time, her hips propped up on his collar, and his penis, slick with her saliva, pistoning in her fist. For a moment, though Solus' audio track played over her, she spoke directly to the camera. Sparatus had learned to read lips a bit—had to, to be a decent diplomat these days—but he couldn't make out all her words. He only pieced out, "I'm Commander Shepard, and [something something something] favorite [something something] the Citadel." Human ritual sex nonsense, perhaps, staking her claim to the hapless turian beneath her. Whatever it was, it made Anderson sigh a little and rest his forehead in his hand.
The vid ruined the turian Councilor's smug respite by splitting the room into quadrants. Now there were four beds and four Shepard/Vakarian couples rutting urgently, each demonstrating a "position comfortable for both species." Doctor Solus' bubble blooped here and arrowed there, occasionally zooming in for a slow-motion closeup of the action while he explained the pros and cons of each method. Typical salarian, he maintained a strange combination of clinical distance and marked enthusiasm for the topic at hand.
One by one, the Spectre couples shuddered and slammed their way to climax. It was amazing how much a healthy human body could withstand from a turian mate. Humans always ended up being tougher than they looked.
Reluctantly, Sparatus was also struck by the tenderness the two showed each other in the aftermath, all four times. They snuggled, sleepy and playful as the doctor went down a bullet point list of distinct similarities in turian and human post-coital behavior.
I accept that these two might hold each other in genuine affection, Sparatus admitted to himself, and then picked away at his newfound enlightenment. It's probably temporary. And it's still disgusting.
And then began a most lurid montage of what Dr. Solus termed "advanced techniques," and the bottom fell out of Councilor Sparatus's gizzard.
Anal sex – Vakarian drilling away at Shepard from behind, and then another shot of Shepard pegging the turian with a huge strap-on dong...that was shaped like an elcor's...fist?
Roleplay – Shepard, squealing and wriggling obscenely in a crotchless, assless, latex Cerberus uniform, spanked over Vakarian's knee. He wore the stern expression and robes of state of a Palaven primarch.
Bondage – Vakarian in manacles and a blindfold, struggling against his bonds as Shepard teased his erect cock with a feather.
Group sex – Shepard and Vakarian screwing while a female turian and male human went at it right next to them, and two suitless quarian men fellated each other in a glass-walled clean room nearby.
The list went on. Voyeurism. Food play. Foot fetish. Biotic play. Waist worship. Spur sex. It didn't matter that Sparatus hadn't the photographic memory of a salarian or the perfect recall of a drell. These things could never be unseen.
Finally, it was over. The rumpled, desecrated bed faded from view. Shepard and Vakarian once again wore their bathrobes, and Dr. Solus stood next to them, concluding his lecture.
"Want to thank you for watching this first in a series of educational vids about interspecies relations. This has been a joint production of Fornax and the Citadel Council. All proceeds from purchases of this presentation go to Citadel Council Foundation for Improvement of Interspecies Relations."
Shepard stepped forward. "If you have questions for Garrus or me, please see our FAQ on the site below. Comments and concerns are welcome; just fill out the form on the extranet site."
"But please," chuckled Vakarian, "for your own safety, don't send us any threats. I'm sure you've heard how we deal with those."
Shepard put her arm around his waist and winked at the camera. Solus waved. The vid blinked off.
"Tell me," Sparatus said quietly to the asari and salarian Councilors, "why we shouldn't strip those two of Spectre status right now."
"Because they were correct," said Tevos, smoothing her gown as she stood. "The vid went viral. The foundation they established pulled in two hundred million credits just on the first day. They took no money for themselves, apart from their usual mission pay. Hate crimes appear to be down, save for some riots on worlds where they wouldn't have been welcome even on a good will tour."
"It's what Spectres are for, Sparatus," commented the salarian. "Getting results when the usual channels won't do. To be honest, when we gave them such an open ended directive, I didn't expect them to do anything as conventional as a press junket. I expected them to pull off some strategic assassinations. Joram Talid, for example. Instead, they recorded their mating. For science! And it's working. A brilliant strategy. In just a few days, they were able to hand us a fully funded foundation to address the remaining mistrust between turians and humans."
Sparatus turned back to Anderson. "And you? What do you think?"
The human still had his head in his hand. "I think...I didn't need to see that."
The turian grunted. "On that, we agree."