Upon arriving in the Omega Nebula Shepard could see the hulks of hundreds of destroyed ships. There were one or two Geth vessels, which immediately set off red flags in his head.

"Legion!" he yelled into the intercom. He needed to know why it looked like there had been a battle between the Geth and some pirates.

"Shepard Commander?" Legion replied from the AI core.

"Why are there geth warships in the Omega Nebula?" Shepard asked. His operation had been such a success on Bekenstein yet here it seemed like all his plans were falling apart.

"Vakarian Lieutenant directed us to protect Omega station from a pirate assault," Legion said after he had interfaced with the relevant runtimes.

This put Shepard more at ease. If Garrus had ordered it then there must have been a good reason. He was also pleased that his vacation idea had been a success. The fact that Garrus took the initiative to order the geth to protect the station meant he was willing and able to operate on his own.

He watched out of the Normandy's front windows as EDI navigated through the debris and docked with the station.

He made his way quickly to Afterlife, walking over several corpses on his way there. He walked right past the guards at the front and went through the club and up the stairs to see Aria sitting at her couch drinking from a glass of wine with a batarian corpse at her feet.

She watched him approach and sit to her right before she said, "That Talon attack was apparently not an isolated incident." Her guards were nowhere to be seen and the club was completely empty. She seemed able to speak freely.

"I heard you had a bit of trouble," Shepard said. He looked around and saw bullet holes all over the room. The screens that usually displayed the dancers in the center had been broken up and down the length of them.

"I would have, but my Geth allies arrived in time to thwart the attack," she said almost playfully. She seemed to be enjoying the idea that her station thought she controlled the geth.

"They're very helpful once you get to know them," Shepard said, playing along with her mood.

Aria smiled for the second time to Shepard and said, "So how's our friend Leng?"

Shepard could tell she was itching to vent her adrenaline on him. "He's locked up on the Normandy. I hope you didn't have any plans for his hands." He smiled at Aria's raised eyebrow.

"Feel free to bring him here at any time. I plan to make an example of how I deal with groups that lie to me," Aria said. Shepard could tell he was dismissed and he got up to retrieve Leng.

Before he had begun to descend the stairs he turned and said, "Make sure to include me in that public service announcement." He left feeling optimistic about their relationship.

When he had offered to catch Leng they had been allies. He had a feeling that now, after Garrus' timely action, they were friends.

Most of the crew that were returning had been picked up. The vast majority had opted to stay with their families instead of continue in Shepard's service. After their abduction by the Collectors many felt that traveling with Shepard if you weren't some sort of superhero was hazardous to your health. Certain crew remained like Ken Donnelly and Gabby Daniels as well as their cook Mess Sergeant Gardner and Joker. Kelly had left; the Collector abduction had hit her harder than anyone on the crew.

I guess when they say you have to be slightly crazy to be a psychologist they aren't kidding, Shepard thought to himself as he made his way back into the CIC from his private quarters. Most of his squad was back, and they were just arriving on Illium to pick up Garrus.

"Commander, there is a message for you from Garrus," EDI said.

"Thank you EDI," Shepard replied as he moved to his terminal. He read the message with a frown growing across his face. It seemed everything had not gone according to plan.

Once they had docked at the port that Garrus had specified Shepard walked over to the airlock and opened the door to find Garrus in full body armor with his helmet under one arm and his bag over his shoulder.

"Hey Garrus," Shepard began. "Things not go so well with your father?" He stepped out of the way to allow Garrus to pass him and enter the Normandy.

"Eh, it went alright for the first three weeks of the trip. At least," Garrus paused for a moment before continuing as the two of the walked towards the CIC, "as well as I was expecting. Then we got attacked by pirates and I ran into Samara and things kind of escalated from there." He set his bag down in the elevator as Shepard selected level three and the doors closed.

"I heard about what you did for Aria," Shepard said to try and distract Garrus. "I really appreciate it and your plan worked flawlessly. Aria is now feared by all of the Terminus Systems and is committed to helping us."

"That's good. It's so hard to get accurate information from the news feeds on Illium, they always interrupt with ads trying to sell you 'Scalp adjustments' or that terrible movie Blasto: the Jellyfish Stings," Garrus said as the elevator reached level three and they stepped out. "I had wondered how that'd turned out."

Shepard noticed how Garrus' walk was more confident and how his shoulders were set. He knew right then that even though he may not have reconciled with his father, he had abandoned the self-doubt.

They stopped in the main battery and Garrus rested his rifles against the wall. Shepard looked in his eye before saying, "It's good to have you back Garrus. Whenever you're settled, I have a mission for you."

THE END