Author: This is the second part of my Cycle about the Spectres Logan Shepard and Rory Udina. The first part had been the story "Two Coins". For a short summary look there at the last page.

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Here's what we call our golden rule
Have faith in you and the things you do
You won't go wrong
This is our family Jewel

"We are family", written by Bernard & Nile Rodgers

Originally performed by Sister Sledge

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Bad Dreams

Udina Estate - Dùn Èideann/Edinburgh – Earth – 7 years ago

"Mother please, she'll only be there this afternoon and I …," Cathleen Udina's voice died away as she saw the expression in her mother's face. The seventeen-year-old girl knew that her mother would do everything for her and she loved her deeply for that. But sometimes Anne-Mary Udina was simply unable to grasp the importance of Cathleen's wishes.

The forty-one-year old heir of the Edinburgh branch of the Udina family presented herself to her surroundings as the two-fisted business woman she had to be to survive in the world of European Trade. Only at home, in the attendance of her children, did she allow her true self to be visible … but not today. Since days her mind had been on that really important meeting and she couldn't allow herself any distraction.

Gently Anne-Mary looked at her daughter, standing in front of her with in this awful battered jeans and her equally outrageous sweatshirt. Her dark brown eyes, that reminded her of her deceased husband, had this pleading expression of a roe that normally got her everything, at least from her brother Rory and most often from her mother too.

"There will be other opportunities, darling. But today I really have not the time. I'm so sorry, but …"

"It is alright, Mom." Cathleen's voice trembled slightly, but after another look into her mother's face she forced a smile onto her lips and stepped forward to embrace her. "Really, Mom, it is alright. I know you would help me if possible." She placed a soft kiss on her mother's cheek and left the room. Watching her leave Anne-Mary sighed before she squared her shoulders and ordered herself to go to work again.

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STG Medical Center – Sur'Kesh – one month after the battle of the Citadel

Shortly Jondum Bau hesitated as he saw Mordin Solus leaving the conference room. The scientist, perhaps the most intelligent Salarian he ever met, always caused cold shudders on his back. He had heard about Solus' incoming leaving of the STG service only two days before. Certainly they would miss his competence but he could understand that he wanted to do something other. Solus wouldn't be the first salarian scientist that felt burned-out. And he had more reason than many others.

Jondum Bau gave him a courtly nod and entered the conference room where Padok Wiks was waiting for him. The younger salarian doctor stared at the diagrams and pictures on the boards at the wall. The Spectre hadn't to examine the body structure of the shown creature to know that it would be Rory Udina, second human Spectre.

"Do you have some news for me, Dr. Wiks," Jondum Bau asked with a neutral tone.

Dr. Wiks turned around, his eyes needing some moments to focus on Jondum Bau's face. Then he nodded slightly and pointed towards the diagrams. "The reaction of his body to the operations had been sufficient."

The tip of his index finger followed some lines that obviously meant much more to him than to Jondum. "The sea water that had entered his body thru the gun wounds had destroyed the right lung. We had to replace that with an artificial lung. Dr. Solus used the opportunity to enhance his capabilities. The new lung has a better oxygen yield, is able to filter a great number of poisonous gases and allows him to go without breathing for five to twelve minutes, dependent on his bodily activity. Most of his other organs had been healthy so far; we only healed some minor damage and cleaned his body from the prior alcohol and drug abuse."

"Alcohol and drugs," Jondum interjected? "Is he addicted? That could cause problems."

Padok Wiks shook his head. "No, he seems to have left behind this episode. But I'd assume that he had been addicted some years ago and his body still showed this."

Obviously Jondum was relieved about this information. "And what it is about his nerves? As I understood Dr. Solus there had been problems?"

Padok Wiks sighed, pointing to some CTG pictures. "The damage from the energy ammunition Nihlus used against him in combination with the medicaments the suit used to save his life and the sea water caused heavy damage on his complete nerve system. We were able to cure most that damage, but not all. Dr. Solus used a special kind of micro-fiber to unburden the organic nerves. They make up a kind of second nerve system and in theory should enable the patient to react even faster than before. But we have to observe him strictly. It is possible that we overlooked parts of his body and this would cause him to have a lesser sense of touch in those parts."

"When will he awaken?"

"We could discontinue the sedatives at any moment now but I would like to leave him in this state for at least another two weeks to give his system time to adapt to the artificial nerves."

"Agreed! I expect to be informed about any greater change of his condition."

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Udina Estate - Dùn Èideann/Edinburgh – Earth – 7 years ago

A slight breeze was all that warned Cathleen about her brother's presence before his arms locked her body and draw her into a tight embrace.

"Gotcha!" His warm smile greeted her and caused Cathleen to forget her inner turmoil for a few seconds. "How is my favorite sister doing today? Are you all earnest and studious as every day or willing to have a few cheerful hours with the family's black sheep?"

Cathleen pouted for a moment and gave Rory a rabbit punch on his shoulder. Dutifully he grimaced in pain. "I'm your only sister, remember?"

"Yes, there was something. I knew there was a reason why I had to love you."

Cathleen stuck out her tongue and Rory paled in shock. "Cathleen, this behavior is not fitting to a young lady of the Edinburgh society." Her brother's try to emulate her mother's tune caused Cathleen to break out into a fit of loud laughter. "You're impossible, Rory."

Her brother grinned only: "I'm not sure but possibly I heard this once or twice before."

"I'm sure you did. And what has my favorite brother in mind as he stalked his little sister?"

Getting a tad more serious but not quite willing to leave his smile behind Rory answered: "I thought about abducting my way to earnest sister and have her ride to the London Archaeological Academy where …"

The latter part of his sentence was cut short but Cathleen's arms embracing him and squeezing his neck. "Air, I need air," Rory whispered.

His sister shoved him away. "Wimp and I thought I have a tough one brother." Her eyes getting a more serious look: "But how do we get there? Mom forbade you to drive and you've no car since you crashed the last one."

With a glimpse of humor in his eyes Rory responded: "No, but Uncle Donnel left the key of his car behind." He drew the keys from his pocket and let them dance in front of his sister's eyes. She narrowed her eyes: "But Mom …"

Rory interjected: "Mother will never learn about that. She has her meeting today. You'll only have to stay your mouth shut about it and declare that you only watched a vid about Dr. Warren's presentation at the Academy. Come, Cathleen, this will be fun."

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STG Medical Center – Sur'Kesh – one month after the battle of the Citadel

Padok Wiks stared at the EEG he'd got and shook his head. The brain activity was way too strong to be healthy while Rory stayed in his artificial sleep. He added some other components to the sedative and hoped that they would succeed in soothing the mind of his patient. Now he simply had to wait.