Final chapter! Fair warning, this final chapter contains sex and masturbation and also a post credits cliffhanger.

I'd like to thank everyone for all your reviews and support of my work. I'd especially like to thank, dark-babydragon for his undying support, writing reviews for every single chapter in my story and also contributing some of his ideas to the Upcoming ME2 story.

Enjoy the last chapter! It's been fun!

Chapter 23

Is this the End?

Austin slowly woke up from a very peaceful sleep. It had been two weeks now since the battle of the Citadel and the defeat of Sovereign. Thanks to his healthy lifestyle and accelerated healing from his rebuilt suit, Austin was already making a speedy recovery. His shoulder wound had almost healed and his ribs where now repaired as well. His spine still hadn't healed though so he was being careful not to put too much strain on his back. Another disadvantage that had caused was that it turned out Union between him and Liara required some of the nerves in his back to function and even though his where absolutely fine, it was still risky since there was the possibility it might cause damage if his back hadn't healed fully. The couple had however been able to meld though, which at least was enough. Due also to his back injury, he and Liara hadn't made love for a while, which was starting to get to him. There had been the occasional time when the two had pleasured one another just with their hands, but two weeks with a loved one without sex was hard to cope with.

As Austin sat up from his long sleep he noticed that the bed was empty. Ever since his injuries, Liara had moved her stuff into his quarters and had slept with him every single night. In fact all of the crew that weren't Alliance planned to stay on the Normandy until he recovered. Tali in particular had promised to stay until Austin made a full recovery so that she could say goodbye to him properly. Even Alpha Squad where still on board to make sure that their Commander, soon to be their Captain according to rumours, recovered. The extended stay though had given the non-Alliance crew plenty of time to think over what they planned to do. Wrex had said that he planned to return to the Krogan home world Tuchanka to try and help his people more, Garrus, as he had said, had now applied for a position in the Helldivers. He hadn't heard anything back yet, but Alpha Squad had told him that it sometimes took a few days to get a reply from the application. Tali obviously would back to the Migrant fleet to complete her Pilgrimage, however she'd be said to go. She had really bonded with this team and saw them as a second family. Liara though, was still unsure. She hoped to continue her Prothean studies, but at the same time she didn't want to leave Austin. She had at one point suggested that she stay until all the Reapers had been stopped. She and her lover both knew after that Sovereign was just a Vanguard and that the real fight was still to begin.

Austin could hear the sound of running water. Liara was having a shower. Austin sighed and lay back down as he thought about her. He smiled as an image of a naked Liara came into his mind. Then he began to hear a rather unusual sound. It sounded like moaning.

"Ooh… faster Austin… ah…" he heard Liara say.

"No fair. She's masturbating without me." Austin thought. He thought about joining her, but she had locked the door. Plus she most likely wouldn't hear him asking to come in. Ever since the night before Ilos, Liara had been becoming a much louder lover. He knew this because this hadn't been the first time he had heard Liara touching herself. Another image of Liara came into Austin's mind. This time though, it was far dirtier. He imagined her right hand reaching lower, reaching her dripping Azure and stroking it vigorously. She was then using the shower head as a sex toy and rubbing it against her pussy while her other hand squeezed one of her large breasts. As he continued to think of Liara fucking herself as he listened to her moans of pleasure, he could feel his cock beginning to stiffen. Unable to resist the growing urge in his shaft he began to stroke it, thinking about Liara, hoping he could actually cum this time, unlike previous attempts.

Liara moaned loudly as she continued to use the shower head on her leaking Azure. She let out a quiet moan as she closed her eyes, thinking of Austin thinking about her stroking herself while he himself stroked his own wonderfully massive cock, his eyes glazed over and darkened with lust, his throat bobbing up and down as he swallowed dryly.

"Stroke it faster, Austin!" Liara moaned.

Austin was taken a back slightly as he head Liara pleading for him to stroke his cock faster. Could she sense what he was doing?

"Might as well do whatever she's thinking about." Austin thought slyly in his mind.

He began to stroke himself faster and more roughly as he continued fantasizing about Liara touching herself. Then he heard the water stop and the door unlock. Before he could do anything, Liara walked out of the shower. Surprisingly, she was still dripping wet and still appeared to be rubbing her pussy. She was surprised to see her boyfriend stroking himself.

"Heard me, did you?" she asked seductively as she watched her bond mates cock throb slightly. That just made her even hornier. "Mind if I join you?"

Austin smiled and patted a spot on the bed next to him. Liara smiled back and laid down next him. She resumed rubbing her azure as she watched Austin continue to stroke his cock to her. They both moaned rather loudly to encourage each other even more. Austin seemed even more spurred on by Liara's moans than she was by his. Liara watched as Austin's cock seemed to grow even more as it prepared for the imminent cum shot. She imagined that huge dollops of cum was about to spurt from the shaft as he masturbated to her touching herself.

"Oh God! I'm getting close, Liara." Austin moaned as he stroked faster and faster as Liara squeezed her breast.

"I want you to paint me, I want you to throw ropes of your delicious white jizz over my body, decorate me and mark me as yours just as I've marked you as mine…" Liara growled sultrily. She watched Austin's cock seem to grow purple. Her body was getting even more excited, waiting to receive the no doubt explosive ejaculation of his sticky cum, and she started panting as she stared at his now literally pulsing purple member. That was just before it erupted. Austin watched as long ropes of cum, much as the ones he'd shot into Liara's body many times before, painted her large breasts and face. Nine huge spurts later, he finally shot a couple more normal loads that landed on her smooth stomach.

Liara moaned and sighed as her boyfriend's cum bathed her body.

"Feels so good. Feels so warm." she sighed as she licked some of the cum off her breasts. She then moved down to Austin's cock and took it into her mouth. She sucked greedily on it as she swallowed the last of her boyfriend's cum.

"Oh yeah! Good girl." Austin moaned as he stroked Liara's head crest. A wet sucking sound came from Liara's mouth as she sucked even harder on the shaft. The Asari wrapped both her hands around the lower regions of her lover's cock and squeezed it tightly. Austin then suddenly flipped her over so that she was on top of him and her glistening pussy was right in front of his face. Liara briefly allowed his dick to pop out of her mouth so that she could beg him to lick her.

Austin didn't hesitate and latched his mouth onto Liara's Azure. She moaned and hummed loudly onto his cock as he licked at her pussy. His tongue flicked against the tip of Liara's clit and pressed into it roughly, and the Commander's lips sucked on the cunt's outer lips. His actions had no pattern or predictability; he was going back and forth between licking and sucking. Austin's mouth was all over Liara's soaked womanhood, and his muffled moans and wet licking sounds filled the room while Liara still continued to pleasure him with her mouth. Austin thoroughly enjoyed eating out Liara's perfect pussy, but he felt his own crotch beginning to build up its own burning heat. He couldn't ignore that he was about to ejaculate again. Even though he had already blown a huge load a few minutes before, his large cock was pent up with more lust. It stood up straight and continued to beat slightly with his pulse inside Liara's warm mouth.

Liara was enjoying this just as much as Austin was. She hummed as she expertly bobbed her head on his Enormous cock while her wet saliva dripped ever more from the tight seal of her mouth and her lover's beef stick.

"Ohh yeah! Mmmm fuck! Can't believe you're taking it all!" Austin moaned in amazement as the Asari deep throated his entire cock. Her hand now fondling his huge balls, she grinned at her boyfriend's clear satisfaction.

"Open wide!" he said.

Liara did so and opened her mouth wide, ready to swallow the cum. Austin's cock once again erupted and large amounts of cum shot out of his cock and into her waiting mouth. Liara once again made sure to suck and lick it all up before slowly lifting her head off his cock, she licked her lips, satisfied with her performance. Then she felt her own imminent release as Austin plunged his tongue deep into her pussy. Liara cried out in pleasure and came all over the Austin's face. Her warm juices gushed into his mouth and down his chin, and a few small squirts landed on his hard stomach. As this messy orgasm covered Austin, Liara continued to rub herself against the Commander's face and moan. Her moans were a combination of sporadic gasps, high pitched whines, and loud groans.

"Goddess!" she screamed as she began to lose control. Her body went limp and her sloppy grinding started to slow down. She fell on her side and gasped for air as she lay on the bed. Her body was dotted with small beads of sweat, and her pussy was glistening with her leaking fluids. She used her last bit of strength to flip onto her back, and she closed her eyes. Her breasts heaved with each of her breaths, and her nipples were still hard and erect.

Austin was so much in love with this gorgeous Asari's body, and he couldn't stop himself from jacking off as he stared at it. Liara looked so vulnerable and almost cute while she squirmed around on the floor in the afterglow of her orgasm. Austin also noticed that Liara had slipped a hand between her legs and was gently rubbing her pussy. Her breathing seemed to match his gentle but tight strokes.

"You like it, don't you?" he asked slyly as he continued to pump his cock.

"I'm still so horny. I want your cock in my pussy, but I don't want to risk your spine." Liara moaned in disappointment.

"We'll just make it slow and gentle. I'll be on top." Said Austin.

Before Liara could respond, he pounced on top of his lover, and lined his throbbing member over her glistening Azure.

"One more?" he asked.

"Yes! Forget love making! I need to be fucked!" Liara pleaded.

"Your wish is my command." Said Austin.

Austin thrust forward into Liara's Azure and began to pound her roughly. He squeezed Liara's ass and thrust into her wet pussy as fast and as hard as he could. The Asari began to pant rapidly, and she felt her body stiffen and tingle with pleasure each time the massive dick filled her. Sweat covered her flawless body, and her limbs were going numb. Liara moaned as her pussy was pounded by Shepard's throbbing erection, and she closed her eyes and gripped the sheets tightly.

"Oh Goddess! Fuck me, my love!" Liara cried as Austin continued to push into her.

"Melding?" Austin asked.

Liara nodded and joined their minds together. Austin's spine was still not well enough for a proper Union but he was well enough for normal melds and that was close enough.

Both lovers moaned together as their pleasures became their own. Austin moved his head down and sucked on Liara's bust as he continued pounding his cock into her Azure. Finally he felt himself getting close. Liara felt it too.

"Cum with me!" she moaned.

Both lovers gripped each other tightly as Austin shot one final load of sticky cum into Liara's womb and large amounts of juice squirted from Liara's Azure. Austin flipped off of Liara and lay next to her. Both of them panted heavily for breath.

"Next time you have a shower, let me know." Austin said as he smiled at Liara.

"Of course." Said Liara.

Both lovers pulled one another into a final kiss before they started getting dressed.

"You must be joking!" said Austin.

Him and all the rest of the crew, including Alpha Squad where in Flux. Not only where they now celebrating their victory over Sovereign together, but also celebrating Austin's full recovery. All of his injuries had healed and his spine had now recovered as well.

"Afraid we're not. Guess we'll no longer be calling you Commander… Captain." Said Dash as he put his feet up on the table.

All of the Helldivers where in their armour but they all had their helmets off. Austin's armour had finished being repaired. Somehow it seemed to work even better than before.

"To our Captain." Said Alaara as she raised her drink. Everyone else did the same.

"To the Captain." They repeated.

So, Shepard. It's our understanding their something going on between you and our… Prothean Expert." Said Sandra suggestively as she put her arm around Alaara. Austin could tell where this conversation would eventually go.

"Indeed. I guess you were right when you said I might get a girlfriend on this mission." Austin replied. He too put his arm around Liara who nuzzled up to him.

"Liara's not Alliance though." Alaara corrected.

"Nothing saying that I have to be." Liara said defensively.

"Sorry, Liara. I didn't mean it like that." Alaara apologized.

Liara just nodded. She hadn't meant to sound so threatening when replying back. But she loved Austin more than anything and was not about to let ranks and military stop that.

"My bond mate sometimes gets carried away. For that apologize. I do try to keep her under control." Said Sandra.

"What are you gonna do? Spank me?" Alaara teased. The Asari Helldiver then turned back to Liara. "I don't mean to pry, but I gotta ask, Liara. Have you two Embraced Eternity yet?" she asked.

"Alaara!" Sandra objected.

Before the human could say any more though, Liara answered the question.

"Yes we have." She said.

"Oh really. So, did you use our unique Melding biotics?" Alaara asked suggestively.

Sandra gave her bond mate a small slap for that.

"One more word out of you and you're not getting anywhere with me tonight." She said.

"Come on though! You always love it when I use it on you; it'd be nice to know at least that our Captain knows what I'm talking about." Alaara said in defence.

"I'm not answering that T'onrak. I don't think Austin's sex life and mine is anyone's." said Liara.

Alaara however took that as a yes. So did Sandra and the giggled with Alaara.

"That good was it?" Alaara asked. She quickly ignored that question though when she saw her Sandra's glare.

"Are you asking because you haven't tried it yourself yet?" asked Sarah who'd been listening in on the conversation. Sandra laughed at this. Alaara did too though.

"Actually I have. Hundreds of times. I always like a woman with a large bust." Alaara replied as she winked at Sandra. She only enjoyed it briefly though before Sandra slapped her again. Once again though, it wasn't a hard one.

"Say that again about my tits and you're not on top tonight." She said. Alaara sulked slightly.

"I think what Alaara is just trying to ask is if you two have got to the more intimate stages of your relationship." Said Sandra, trying to sound gentle.

"We have. Now I would prefer you left the subject alone." Said Austin sternly.

"Yes, Captain." They both said.

"Something I'd be interested though is why you're so obsessed with sex?" Sarah asked.

Alaara was quite for a bit before she answered. It wasn't that she was offended by the question, nor was she uncomfortable answering it. It was just so hardly anyone, except Sandra, asked her that kind of question. Even the rest of her squad mates didn't quite know about the reason why she loved sex so much.

"This should be interesting." Said Austin as he lay back slightly in his chair and rubbed Liara's arm slightly.

"There are many reasons. Partly it may be because so many people view Asari in a sexual way." Said Alaara.

Liara actually nodded in agreement. "That is true. A lot of young males have an unhealthy obsession with Asari." She said.

Austin looked at her with a bit of surprise. "Oh my wounded heart." He said in a joking manner. Liara quickly corrected herself.

"You however, my love, make an exception. I your case it's a very healthy obsession." She said.

Both lovers smiled to one another and briefly kissed. Both Alaara and Sandra smiled at them.

"You still didn't answer my question, Alaara." Said Sarah. "Your obsession with fucking can't be just from some Asari stigma."

"Alright, since you've asked twice. Mostly it's to do with my mother." Said Alaara.

"Your mother?" Sarah asked.

"Yeah, actually who is your mother?" Austin asked.

"Elraa T'onrak. You ever heard of her?" Sandra asked.

Austin, Sarah and Liara shook their heads.

"She's a very famous Asari porn star. Probably best known for her long partnership with Matriarch Esree. They're the first ones to do a Maiden/Matriarch porn series." Said Sandra.

"Let me guess, the Matriarch is your father?" Sarah asked.

"Yeah. They actually both told me how I was conceived once I was old and mature enough to understand." Said Alaara. "One time they were shooting a scene with them both making love, they had full union and everything so that they could enlarge their tits and one of them to grow their clit to a large size to use as a phallus, and the connection ended up being so deep that my mother ended up pregnant with me. After that, I guess both their love of sex rubbed off on me. Unlike tem though, I'm not afraid of modesty."

"So both you're parents where Asari, like Liara's?" Austin asked.

"Yep. Unlike Liara's though, mine are still together. No offence, Liara." Said Alaara.

"None taken." Said Liara.

"You're parents are still together you say?" Sarah asked.

"Yes. They make a porn movie together every year or so. Sometimes they do it on their own, other times they bring other people in to join them." Said Alaara.

"Hmmmmm… I should keep an eye out." Said Sarah as she sat back in her seat.

Austin was surprised by what his sister had just said.

"Sarah, is that the best way to spend your time?" came a female voice.

Everyone turned around to see Captain Hannah Shepard.

"Mom? What a surprise. Didn't expect to see you here." Said Sarah.

The Alliance Captain smiled at her two children. "You didn't think we'd miss our son's promotion?" Hannah asked.

"Us?" Austin asked.

To everyone's amazement another Helldiver appeared right next to Hannah. This Helldiver was none other than General Matt Shepard, Austin and Sarah's father.

True to what a lot of people said, Matt looked very much like his son, some differences though was that Matt had a much older and more veteran like look to him. Like Austin, Matt's face had a lot of noticeable scars. There loads on his face and several large ones across his head, which as a result left several gaps in his short brown hair. Like his son, his also had brown eyes and a British accent. Unlike Austin though, Matt didn't shave as much as his son did so he did have a bit of a stubble.

Like his son, the Helldiver General hadn't done much to alter his armour. A few features and additions he had made though was the medals which where engraved and painted onto his chest plate to denote his rank as a General. As expected as well, Matt had the same identical Shoulder armour that Austin had. Unlike his son though, Matt had his on his right shoulder rather than the left that his son had. Matt's most noticeable feature though was that both his left arm and leg where both cybernetic. Matt had lost his arm around 10 years ago when he returned from his leave of absence of raising his son. It had happened during one of the many wars against the Batarians in the Terminus systems. An explosion from a nearby shell had caused Matt to lose his footing and he had landed on a bomb. The explosion had blown his arm off and he had been hospitalized for a whole month. This injury however was not something that the Arkanes couldn't treat. Due to their experience on inventing the Helldivers, the Arkanes also became experienced in building highly advanced cybernetics. Because of this, Matt had had his missing arm replaced by a cybernetic one. Due to the extremely advanced technology the arm still enabled him to feel through it since the cybernetics had their own nervous systems. It had taken some getting used to, but Matt had quickly returned to active duty. The leg meanwhile was a slightly different story. Matt had lead an assault on a massive Batarian base where hundreds of slaves were being kept. The operation had been successful with no casualties but one of the Batarians had managed to set the base's self-destruct sequence. Matt had saved all the colonists and his men but had got his left leg caught in the blast at the last minute. Although he had managed to survive, his leg had far too badly injured to be healed properly and it had to be amputated. Matt however had refused to let the injury force him into an early retirement and had replaced his missing leg with the Cybernetic one he wore today.

Upon seeing the General, all of Alpha Squad got up from their seats and saluted. Apart from Zartrack, Matt was one of the most respected and high ranking Generals in the Helldiver army.

"At ease, Alpha Squad." said Matt. The General then turned to his son and daughter. Sarah stood up and hugged while Austin simply shook hands. They did both smile at each other though.

"Dad! How nice to see you!" said Sarah.

"To what do we owe the pleasure?" Austin asked.

"Do I need a reason to see my own children?" Matt asked happily.

"But aren't you needed out there? In the Terminus Systems?" Sarah asked.

"It's not critical. They can manage a few days or so without me." said Matt. He then noticed Liara and the rest of the crew. "Are you going to introduce us?"

"Of course. Mum, dad, this is Liara T'soni. Liara, this is my mother, Captain Hannah Shepard, and my father, General Matt Shepard." Austin introduced.

Liara was a bit speechless by meeting the parents of her lover. She shook hands shyly with Hannah first, then Matt.

"It's a real honor. Austin always speaks of you with great fondness." She said.

"It's nice to meet to you as well, Liara. Austin has said a lot about you as well." Said Hannah warmly.

"You're too kind, Captain Shepard." Said Liara. She still sounded shy and she seemed to be blushing slightly.

"You're allowed to use my first name, Liara. You are my son's girlfriend after all." Said Hannah.

"Maybe even future daughter in law." Matt said as a joke. Sarah couldn't help but chuckle slightly. Austin and Hannah however didn't think that was something to joke about.

"Dad!" He said indignantly.

"It might be possible." Matt suggested. Hannah could tell however that this was making Liara a bit uncomfortable.

"Darling, behave." she said, trying to keep her husband under control. It hadn't been the first time she had to do so. Although she knew Matt only ever had eyes for her, she did sometimes become defensive when she saw him talking or joking with other women. "I'm sorry, Liara. Matt's not quite the same gentlemen as his son." She apologised.

"And that's why you love me, Hannah." Matt added as he wrapped his cybernetic arm around his wife.

"Dad!" Austin hissed. But the General silenced him.

"So, Liara, I think we'd all be interested to know what your intentions are towards our son?" Matt asked. He sounded serious this time.

Austin face palmed. He hated it when his parents were like this.

Surprisingly though, Liara didn't seem nervous by this and stood her ground. "I love Austin, and he loves me, we're going to see how it develops from there, but as Austin once said, I'm hoping for 'marriage." She hoped she hadn't said anything wrong.

Matt was surprised by this. "I've heard of love at first sight but… you've worked fast, mate." He said to his son. A thought suddenly came to him. "How old are you?" he asked Liara.

"I am only one hundred and six…"

"Barely and adult by your people's standards, I know." Matt nodded. Hannah seemed to have brief bit of concern on her face. Austin knew why.

"This is your father?" Wrex asked as the rest of the Normandy crew joined the conversation.

"Indeed I am. And you are?" Matt inquired.

"Mum, Dad, this is my crew. They're the ones that helped me defeat Saren." Austin said as he introduced the Normandy crew. Just as he had finished introducing everyone though, his omni tool bleeped. He had an incoming message. Excuse me a minute, would you." He said.

Austin found a more private location of Flux and activated the message. Captain Anderson's face appeared on the screen.

"Shepard. Good to see you've made a full recovery. Also congratulation on your promotion, Captain." He said.

"Thank you, Anderson. Though, I doubt you've called me just to congratulate me." Austin replied.

"The Council wishes to speak to us and Ambassador Udina." Said Anderson.

"What do they want this time?" Austin asked in frustration.

"Couldn't say." Said Anderson.

"Alright. I'll be right up." Austin sighed.

All three of the Council stood in front of the Ambassador and the two Captains. Austin could only hope he wasn't in for another lecture. Hopefully though, the Council where grateful. It was his choice after all that had saved them.

"Ambassador Udina, Captain Anderson, Commander Shepard." Said the Asari Councillor.

"It's Captain now." Austin added.

"Then I apologise, Captain. We were not aware that you had been promoted. We have gathered here to recognize the enormous contributions of the Alliance and Helldiver forces in the war against Sovereign and the Geth." Said the Asari Councillor.

"Many humans and Helldivers lost their lives in the battle to save the Citadel. Brave and courageous soldiers who willingly gave their lives so that we-the Council-might live." Said the Salarian Councillor.

"There is no greater sacrifice, and we share your grief over the tragic loss of so many noble men and women." Said the Turian councillor.

"This is sounding promising." Austin thought.

"The Council also owes you a great personal debt, Captain. One we can never repay. You saved not just our lives, but the lives of billions from Sovereign and the Reapers." Said the Asari Councillor.

"Captain Shepard, your heroic and selfless actions serve as a symbol of everything humanity and the Alliance stand for." Said the Salarian Councillor.

"I'm still just as much part of the Helldivers." Austin objected. They deserved just as much credit as the Alliance did. Maybe even more.

"Indeed. We may not agree with their operation in the Terminus Systems, but sometimes they have their advantages." The Asari Councillor agreed.

"And thought we cannot bring back those valiant soldiers who gave their lives to save ours, we can honor their memories through our actions." Said the Turian councillor.

"Humanity has shown it is ready to stand as a defender and protector of the galaxy. You have proved you are worthy to join our ranks and serve beside us on the Citadel council." Said the Asari Councillor.

"Wow! I've heard of being grateful, but…"Austin thought.

"Councillor, on behalf of humanity and the Alliance, we thank you for this prestigious honor and humbly accept." Said Udina.

"At least he's finally happy." Austin thought. It did now occur to him that he was the cause of all this. Without him they would not even be here. It was another victory he could count in his collection.

"We will need a list of potential candidates to fill humanities seat on the Council." Said the Salarian Councillor.

"Given all that has happened, I am sure your recommendation will carry a great deal of weight, Captain. Do you support any particular candidate?" the Asari Councillor asked.

"What? Why are you leaving this up to me? I'm just a soldier, not a diplomat. Besides, I never said I supported anyone." Austin objected. He had been forced to make many hard choices in his life, but this was too big for him.

"The choices you have made have saved the entire galaxy, Captain. Why should we doubt your decision's now?" the Turian councillor asked.

"Well, one of my decisions got my Spectre status revoked." Austin answered.

"We understand your decision now, Captain. You did what you had to do. It's fair to say that if you hadn't, we wouldn't have been alive now to regret not aiding you." Said the Asari Councillor.

Austin considered for a moment. Ultimately though, he knew this choice was not up to him. This was something that humanity itself would decide, not him.

"This shouldn't be my choice. All of humanity should have the right to choose, not just me. So my answer is, let the politicians figure this one out." He said.

"Your answer is understandable, Captain." Said the Salarian Councillor.

"Indeed. This is too important to rush into." Said Udina.

"Of course, Ambassador. We will welcome your candidates with open arms, whomever they may be." Said the Asari Councillor.

"Also, we still have yet to reward you ourselves. Your promotion is indeed prestigious, but we feel you deserve more for all you've done, Captain." Said the Turian Councillor.

"You have something in mind?" Austin asked. He couldn't really think how the Council could top a promotion. Unless they planned to make him a Major. That was very unlikely though. Plus, the Arkanes would disapprove of it as well. They decided whether their soldiers where worthy of ranks, not the Council.

"Yes. But we unsure how to proceed with it. Although we have revoked your status as a Spectre, we feel that by saving us and the Citadel you have earned that position back." Said the Turian councillor.

"Oh no!" Austin groaned in his head. Just when he thought he'd put that behind him.

"That seems a fair reward." Anderson agreed.

"Don't encourage them Anderson!" Austin mumbled. His helmet hid the noise completely. But then the Council spoke again.

"However, we are fully aware of your negativity towards it. Ultimately we have come to the decision to give you the choice on whether you want the Spectre title back." Said the Asari Councillor.

"You mean I have a choice this time?" Austin asked.

The Council nodded. Austin thought for a moment. He still didn't want to be a Spectre, but at the same time, humanity needed a symbol of hope and that had been him. No though… Eventually he decided on an appropriate answer.

"I appreciate the offer Councillors. But with your permission, I need some time to think about this." He said.

"We understand, Captain. It is never an easy decision." Said the Salarian Councillor.

"The battle with Sovereign destroyed our illusions of peace and security. Now the galaxy will look to not just us, but the Alliance and the Helldivers to defend them." Said the Turian Councillor.

"Sovereign was just a vanguard and it nearly wiped you out. You won't stand a chance if the whole Reaper fleet shows up. Not unless we find some way to stop them." Said Austin as he left the room. He had a lot of work to do. As he did, Udina addressed the Council.

"Shepard's right. We're on the verge of war with an enemy unlike any the galaxy has ever known; a war for the very survival of all life as we know it. Humanity is ready to do its part. We will not back down. We will not surrender." Said the Ambassador. Anderson then joined in.

"With the support of the other races we can win this battle. With them behind us, we can stand against the Reapers return and drive them back into dark space!"

The beautiful scenery of Thessia greeted Austin and Liara as they disembarked from the Normandy. The Coffin containing Benezia's preserved body followed just behind them as it hovered above the ground. Alaara and Sandra followed as well. It turned out that Alaara had at one point worked as a commando for Benezia a few years or so before she became a Helldiver. Sandra meanwhile refused to let her bond mate go anywhere without her.

"Hmmmm, Thessia's changed slightly since I was last here." Said Austin as he admired the tall and elegant buildings of Thessia.

"You've been here before?" Liara asked.

"I came here once on a training mission. That was about eight or seven years ago, I think." Said Austin.

"I haven't been here for many years either. I grew up here you know. Benezia raised me here." Said Liara. As she said it she looked at Benezia's body in the hovering coffin. She touched the glass slightly. Austin noticed her sad expression and put his arm around her.

"At least she's home now." He said calmly.

"Yes." Liara said as she leaned onto Austin's shoulder. Alaara also patted Liara on shoulder in comforting way.

"I only served under her for a year, but I've never met or more wiser Matriarch." Said Alaara calmly.

"Thank you Alaara. That means a lot." Said Liara.

The funeral home was filled to the brim; a load on Asari and a few non Asari entering and leaving, some hugging, other's crying and most standing in silence to offer their condolences. The majority of the crowd was made up of Benezia's former followers and friends; every member that ever served beneath her was there, taking turns to hug her daughter and offer their sincerest apologies for her loss.

Under request from Liara, the special preservation chamber that Austin had put Benezia's body in would remain sealed and she would forever remain preserved. Something that Austin had been only too happy to agree with since it was also how the Arkanes and the Helldivers buried their best soldiers.

Liara walked up to the coffin that contained her mother's preserved body. Although she had had plenty of time to get over her mother's death, she still couldn't hold back her tears. She covered her eyes with a hand, hiding her face as Austin gently stroked her back. Eventually Liara turned around and buried her face into the crook of her lover's neck as Austin closed his arms around her and held her tight.

"It's alright, Liara… just let it out" se soothed, slowly rubbing her back.

"I thought I'd be alright. I-I thought-"


The crowd was soon seated, bowing their heads in respect as the preacher stood above the casket, reminiscing about the strength and determination of the Matriarch she had been honoured to know. Liara sat up front, shifting in her seat as Austin held her hand. It was moments like these that time just seemed to crawl slowly by. After detailing the many sacrifices and heroic deeds of her mother, the preacher finally relinquished, and stepped down.

"If anyone would like to say a few words, please feel free to step forth."

Austin turned to Liara.

"I did prepare something, but I don't think I have the strength to read it." Said Liara. She was still in tears.

"Why don't I read it with you?" Austin suggested calmly.

Liara nodded and the two lovers stood up. Some of the crowd murmured a bit as they saw Benezia's daughter step up to the stand with another. Austin stood behind the podium while Liara stood next to him. She handed him the speech she had prepared. Austin then cleared his throat and spoke.

"For those of you who do not know me, my name is Captain Austin Shepard of the Helldivers. As her lover and bond mate, Liara has agreed to let me speak for her." He said.

Some of the crowd gave a very quiet clap for Liara at least having a bond mate. Austin then went to reading the speech that Liara wrote.

"We live in an age of darkness. A galaxy full of fear, hate and intolerance. But in every age, there are those who fight against it. Lady Benezia T'soni was born almost a thousand years ago into a divided galaxy. A galaxy that she not only tried to heal but unite. A mission that sadly, she never saw accomplished. It would seem that it is the destiny of many great ones to see their goals unfulfilled. But their legacy lives on, and that legacy is used to eventually see that gal fulfilled. Even in death, Benezia will forever be remembered as a symbol to the Asari." He said. He then paused and decided to add in a small bit himself.

"Many believe that Benezia became an enemy by allying herself with Saren Arterius. While that fact is true, it is not the full truth. The Citadel Council themselves would not wish me to say this, nor would they believe it. But to not say it would be an insult to the Matriarch's memory. Her mind was not her own. Saren Arterius was a conflicted and powerful individual. Benezia felt that she could show him the right path. Her intentions for joining him where noble, sadly that choice led to her Indoctrination at the hands of the Reaper Sovereign. Despite this control however, she eventually broke free, and her last moments she redeemed herself by not only helping us to stop Saren, but also making peace with Liara. It's fair to say that without her, a lot of us would not even be here today to say goodbye to her. For that, we should all be grateful. Benezia is just as much the hero as I am, maybe even more than that." He said. He quickly caught a glimpse of Liara's smile. He could also see that the speech was bringing a few happy tears to everyone's eyes. Only Sandra and Alaara weren't crying. But they did looks of sorrow on their faces and where holding each other's hands tightly. Before he could read again, Liara stepped up and said that she felt she could finish the speech. Austin nodded and stepped down. Liara then took over.

"Benezia was more than a leader, more than a teacher, and more than a wise Matriarch. She was also a dear mother. When I was afraid, she would give me strength. And although that I am alone, she has given me a new family." Said Liara. She looked at Austin and smiled slightly at him as he said the last bit. Her lover smiled back.

"She may be gone, but her teachings, guidance, wisdom and strength live on through all of us. Wherever we may go, we must carry on her vision, a vision of a galaxy of peace. "I can't say I know for sure where she is now in the embrace of the Goddess, but I do know that she's looking down. She always hated war; hated everything about it, and I know for a fact that she's smiling at all of us finally living in the peace we all fought so hard to have. But wherever she is, whatever she's doing, she already knows what her little wing is about to say. I love you mother, forever and always."

"You did well, Liara. It took great courage to say all that." Said Austin as he held Liara's hand.

"I couldn't have found that courage without you, my love. What you said about her, thank you." Said Liara.

"I'm sure your mother's still proud of you. The dead do not weep, nor do they suffer" said Austin as he recited another one of his mentor's wise sayings.

"No, but the living do." Said Liara.

"Yes, but the living will grow stronger from it. Your mother was an honourable woman and I am sorry I did not get to know her." Said Austin.

Liara leaned back in her seat, stretching her legs out as she laid her head on her lover's shoulder. Austin stroked her head crest as she did.

"Thank you Liara" he murmured, closing her eyes.

"For what?"

"For just being you. For making me follow my heart to the right place."

"I wouldn't be who I am without you, Austin."

Their lips locked as Austin leaned forward. His heart's frantic beating had finally stilled.

"Let's go finish this."

The ride back to the apartment where they would be staying was a brief one. Since they didn't have anything vital to do, both Liar and Austin had decided to spend a week or so on Thessia. Finding somewhere to stay hadn't been difficult. All of Benezia's belongings now belonged to Liara, so therefore they now had her old home all to themselves. This was the first time since she had left to study at university that she had returned.

It was a calm, warm night and she moved silently behind Austin, pressing her naked breasts into his back, both of them similarly devoid of garments as they always slept together nude. He let out a satisfied and more importantly relaxed sigh at the pleasurable surprise of Liara's body pressed against his.

"Feeling better?" she queried softly.

"Much. Now especially" and to emphasise his point he slid a back, caressing her strong thigh, moving slowly up towards his favourite spot: those glorious blue mounds that were Liara's buttocks.

"Thank you for bringing me out here Liara. I needed this."

"It was my pleasure, Shepard. Besides, I wanted you to see our home mother left us, and show you where I grew up."

Austin looked around for a moment. "It's just the same as the memories we shared during our Union." He said.

A seductive smile crept onto Liara's face. Austin knew that look. It was her "Let's have sex." Look. It was becoming a lot more common these days.

"Speaking of which… we haven't had a Union for weeks and I believe your spine's back to normal now." She said.

"I was beginning to think you'd ever ask." Said Austin as Liara lay on top of him and looked deep into his eyes.

"I love you, Austin." She said.

"I love you too, Liara." Said Austin as he began to massage her breasts.

"Show me." Said Liara. With that, her eyes went completely black.

"Embrace Eternity!"


The Citadel tower was still being cleared of all the debris, the remains of Sovereign and the bodies of the Geth and the Helldivers. At the moment, there was only one C-sec officer in the entire office. All the others where in the Council Chambers cleaning everything up. All he was doing was just going over the reports of the clean-up. He was currently on break and he'd return in a minute. As he continued his drink his data pad bleeped. He picked it up and read the message.

"Report: All Helldiver and C-sec bodies have been recovered. Regarding the Geth bodies however, we seem to be missing one." Said the report.

The C-sec officer didn't seem surprised. He typed in a reply message. "Which Geth do we appear to be missing then? If it's a simple soldier will find it in minutes."

There was a small pause before reply came back.

"No! We've counted all the soldiers and all other normal Geth. The one we still haven't found yet is the mutated Geth prime leader, otherwise known as the Terror Geth. We've searched the tower completely and there's no sign of the body." It said.

The officer then started to worry slightly. "Wasn't that the one that Commander Shepard killed? The one who had its eyes stalk ripped out?" he typed.

There was another brief pause, and then a reply. "Yes. And if there's one thing I know, if there's no corpse, they guy's still alive." Said the message.

Just as the officer got out of his chair, all the lights in his office suddenly went out. The officer looked around in fright. Only too late did he notice a massive, headless, and heavily damaged but still functional Geth body lunge at him…

To be Continued…

Coming soon… Mass Effect 2, The Helldiver Saga, The Collector War

YES! My very first fanfiction, finished!

Okay, you can expect that Shiala sex fic I mentioned about to be uploaded in a few days. After that, I'm gonna take a small break from writing. Rest assured though, writing for Mass Effect 2 will begin at the start of June.

I hope you've enjoyed reading this story as much as I've enjoyed writing it. See you soon!