A/N: This story takes place directly following the main plot of ME2, it will NOT be including information or situations from ME3, at least anytime soon. An appropriate disclaimer will be thrown up at the start of a chapter if such spoilers were to be included so no worries.

The characters and universe are the property of Bioware, EA, and all other respective parties. I only own my own OC's and the original storyline. Please enjoy!

The airlock door opened, and Joker turned the pilot's chair around as he heard approaching footsteps. It was Chambers, the Normandy's Yeoman. "Joker, there's someone outside that asked to see you."

"To see me?" he replied skeptically. No one ever actually wanted to see him.

Kelly nodded. "Yeah, a pretty woman at that."

Joker raised a brow. Now she was really pulling his leg. "I'm only going because I don't believe you would let me walk all that way for a prank."

She smiled. "Oh, I don't think you'll be disappointed."

Shaking his head, Joker proceeded to carefully push himself out of his chair. He had been sitting too long anyway, and should really stretch his muscles out. It was as good excuse as any to wander out to the docking platform to see who had come looking for him of all people.

As the doors opened, he noticed a woman with her back turned. She wore combat boots, ragged grey cargo pants, and a black hoodie- the red and white stripes down the arm indicative of an N7 soldier. Her hair was a dark brown, left loose, allowing the curls to cascade down to her mid-back. Joker noted her shapely silhouette, especially the view he was currently getting. He also noticed the heavy pistol strapped to her thigh.

Joker approached cautiously. She clearly heard his awkward steps though, turning around. His breath caught in his throat as he met her piercing grey eyes. "Kaylee?" He couldn't believe it was really her.

Joker felt a shove on his back, wincing in pain. Doing so made him drop the books he had been carrying. The bullies of the highschool laughed as they passed by, with the jock leader taking the moment to throw out a few of the usual insults. One of his cronies kicked at his ankle, which was all it took to bring Jeff to his knees.

Not again! he cursed himself, ignoring the cracking of bones. He hated this- them always winning. He couldn't stand being so weak, unable to just give them a good swift-

"Hey, fuckhead!" a female voice yelled. It was one unfamiliar to the younger Jeff Moreau. They all looked toward where the voice had come from. A beautiful girl stared down the bullies with piercing grey eyes filled with fire. "Don't you have better things to do?"

"And who the fuck are you?" the jock king demanded.

Joker didn't recognize her either. She was obviously new. Her baggy, ripped jeans and the black form-fitting tank top, along with various gothic looking accessories made her stand out. Her whole persona screamed "don't fuck with me." And while it was an act that some teens put on, Jeff had the feeling she had the ability to back it up.

"Your worst nightmare if you don't get outta here, pronto." She cracked her knuckles meaningfully.

"Yeah, ok. Like I'm really scared of-" She sucker punched him right in the jaw for getting too close. As he wheeled back, the goons decided to jump in. She dodged a few punches before catching someone's fist in her hand. Twisting sharply, there was a loud popping sound as the guy cried out in pain. She kicked him in the chest, sending him on his ass.

Kicking out another guy's feet, she turned as the leader moved in on her. He shoved her roughly, sending her back into the lockers. As he came near her however she threw open the locker next to them, the door hitting him squarely in the side of the head. She then landed a swift kick to his mid-section.

"Now get your sorry asses out of my sight," she growled. Slowly the battered bullies did as they were ordered and scampered away.

The girl now turned her attention to the wounded Jeff. She knelt in front of him, the fiery glare replaced by a look of concern. "Are you alright?"

Reflexively, he replied with a biting remark, "I'm fine. I don't need anyone's help. I already get beat on enough as it is without them brandishing me a wuss too."

She frowned, brows furrowed. He sighed. "Sorry, I didn't mean to bite your head off."

"Don't worry about it." She offered him a hand up, which he gladly accepted. He was fairly sure he had fractured his ankle, and possibly his knee with the landing. As he attempted to put weight down on it, both were confirmed and he winced at the stabbing pain.

The stranger had already grabbed his books before he'd even realized it and she moved swiftly in beside him. "Here," she said, placing his hand on her shoulder. "When you get your balance I'll help you down to the nurse's office."

Jeff sighed. She'd already done enough for him- more than any other person around there would have- and he told her as much. But that didn't sway her. She was determined to give him a hand it seemed. "It's the least I can do." Giving in, Jeff agreed- though she wasn't giving him much of a choice in the matter.

She put her arm around his waist, placing his arm over her shoulder and sliding her body right up next to his. Jeff felt the heat rush to his face and his heart speeding up. He tried his best to block out the thoughts entering his head, but with each brush of their bodies he couldn't help it. What the hell was a beautiful girl like this doing helping his sorry crippled ass?

When they reached the office, the nurse immediately pulled them into her room. She had dealings with Jeff's brittle bone disease at least two or three times a month- usually caused by the bullying he'd been receiving since grade school. Why he'd never given in to his mother's ideas of homeschooling he didn't know.

As the nurse left the room to place a call to his mother, he looked up at the striking beauty. "I'm sorry I didn't seem grateful earlier." He looked at his feet. "Thanks for the assist."

"I didn't mean to wound your pride," she mentioned.

He scoffed. "I don't think I've got any pride left to hurt."

"Don't say that." Her voice was sharp, catching his attention. "If you don't have confidence in yourself, then how is anyone else supposed to believe in you?"

There was a silence between them for a few moments- that seemed like hours- before she finally stopped leaning against the wall. She sighed heavily. "Well, I should probably get to class. It was nice meeting you." She stuck her hand out. "I'm Kaylee, by-the-way, Kaylee Sawyer."

He took her hand, managing a half smile. "Jeff Moreau."

"I'm glad to have met you Jeff. Maybe we could hang out sometime." And just like that, she left, not waiting for a reply. Jeff had no clue what to think, nor any idea how their relationship would develop over those years.

There she was now, right in front of him. Kaylee looked at him with that same brilliant smile she always had. He didn't know why, but the time he'd been away from her seemed suddenly like a lifetime. Hell, in a way it was. A lot had happened to Joker since joining the new Normandy. And it wasn't over by a long shot.

"Jeff!" Kaylee moved in quickly, wrapping her arms around his neck. As her head lay on his shoulder, he stood there in shock. Catching himself, he wrapped his arms around her curvy form. "It's so good to see you. I've missed you so much. Oh!" She pulled away, apologizing if she had hugged too hard. "I got a bit excited."

"No it's fine," he smiled. "I'm much less breakable now. I've been getting some new treatments." Well, perhaps had been would be a better description seeing as how he doubted Cerberus would do any more hardened bone weave injections since the Commander had told the Illusive Man where to shove it.

"That's great news." She blushed slightly. "I'm just glad to see you're alright. I was worried about you." She glanced at her feet awkwardly- not something he saw her do much.

"Well, I'm happy that you're safe. I'm sorry I haven't been able to call or write."

"Oh, I know how it is. I've been pretty busy myself, so don't worry."

"Yeah, but I do. I could have at least dropped you a line to give you an update."

"Relax, Jeff. What's done is done." She stepped in closer to him. "Don't I always forgive you?"

"Yeah, you're too nice to me, y'know that?" he replied, punching her shoulder lightly. "So how did you know where I was?"

Kaylee shrugged. "Rumors," was her coy reply.

"And you believe in those now?" He raised his brow.

"No, but it was worth a shot. People were talking that the Normandy made a jump through the Omega 4 Relay and had docked on Omega for repairs. With my connections, I was able to find out that indeed you had done just that. So when there was talk your next destination was the Citadel, I asked my friend in Citadel Traffic Control to alert me when you landed."

Joker smirked, shaking his head. Typical Kaylee.

"So, now that I've gotten ahold of you, you're coming with me to hang out, eat, cause general chaos..." Yup, typical Kaylee.

Just then the airlock opened. Striding out was Shepard, flanked by Tali and Garrus. "Hey Joker," he greeted. "Who's this?"

"Commander Shepard!" Kaylee gave a quick salute.

"No need for all that. I'm no longer an Alliance soldier."

"That's a matter of opinion... Sir." She caught Joker trying not to chuckle. She was not one for formalities, so watching her be so uncomfortable was always funny to watch. "I'm Lt Kaylee Sawyer, N7 marine, 7th Fleet."

Shepard nodded, undoubtedly noting all this before she'd even spoken. "N7, huh? I don't remember seeing you in my class."

"I enrolled in the N7 program after you had left... Sir."

A laugh caught in Joker's throat. He attempted to look preoccupied as everyone else glanced at him.

"Garrus Vakarian," the Turian introduced himself.

"Tali'Zorah vas Normandy," the little Quarian said with some pride.

"Good to finally meet you both," Kaylee replied, smiling. "I've heard a lot about you." Joker had told her many stories of them since the original Normandy mission to stop Saren. She would have enjoyed being given the chance to learn more about them.

"Well Lt," Shepard said, "if you don't mind associating with Alliance rejects, you're welcome to accompany us around the Citadel."

Well there goes my date, Joker thought. After all, who's gonna turn down the Savior of the Galaxy for-

"Actually, Commander, I was hoping that I could have permission to steal Jeff for a while."

Joker's mouth dropped, though he composed himself quickly.

"That's fine. We're going to be docked at least a few days, maybe longer." Shepard looked over at his helmsman. "Take all the shore leave you want Joker. Heaven knows we can all use it." The Commander headed off with the others in tow, leaving a slightly stunned Joker in his wake.

"Well then," Kaylee said, clapping her hands together, "let's get going."

Joker smiled softly, stepping up beside her. "You're gonna be the death of me one of these days, y'know."

Her cheeky grin said it all. As they walked towards the elevators, Joker couldn't help but smile. Damn, it was good to have her there again.