This particular entry in the Cain Archives comes not from his time in the Imperium as before, but after he arrived in Citadel space. I know that a great many people have been clamoring for additional information on "The Imperium of Man", but those memories are more and more distant to me as each day passes. Instead, I will leave that to Admiral Sulla's... Colorful memorials, or another original source. Instead, I will let Cain talk about what would become his new life. In his usual, rambling style, Cain often forgoes any mention of events that transpire outside of his rather narrow view, and I have inserted documentation to supplement his perspective that will allow the reader to see the broader affects of Cain's actions.

-A. Veil.

It had been a rather rough morning. Woken up at an inhumanly indecent hour by a irate* inquisitor, having a forced march across ancient, ork infested ruins, all so I could engage in a fire fight with a group of fanatic xenos. Amberly always did have the oddest sense of a fun outing. Another shuriken round glanced off the stone work above my head, and I instinctively ducked. Like I said, a rough morning.

My arrival on Terrgor Primus had been rather unspectacular at first. A small, boring world of little interest** to anyone but the few xeno-archeological experts that still picked over the ruins that dotted its surface, the 597th Valhallan had been dispatched to deal with a rather rampant ork incursion in the sector, which threatened the forge world of Terrgor Secludes and its vital productions of everything from common laze guns to the towering titans its tech priests produced. Terrgor Primus was literally swarming with orcs, who would soon make the jump to space travel and allow them to assault Terrgor Secludes with little trouble.***

Naturally, the Valhallan's could have only been happier if we had been dispatched to an ice world overrun with orks, or perhaps just an ice world in general****. My aid Jurgen in particular seemed particularly excited, even going so far as to make an awkward attempt at cleaning his kit and scrounging additional power packs for his melta gun.

For myself, I was more than a little worried. Orks were common enough, and not really worth the trouble in my opinion. As far as I was concerned, we should have just declared exterminatus, proclaimed victory for the Emperor, and enjoyed a few months of light patrol duty on Secludes to make sure no orks had infested the planet. But a certain overeager, dangerous beautiful inquisitor had messaged me before our arrival, saying that she needed me to do some special work for her on Terrgor Primus, and to bring her favorite blank***** along for the ride.

Naturally, she could have simply painted a giant warning sign across the planet that said "DANGEROUS XENOS HERE" and I would have gotten much the same message. I was even more forceful in my suggestions to Colonel Regina Kasteen that we simply declare exterminatus and slag the place from orbit.

"What, and deny the troops their fun Cain? That isn't like you at all." She had playfully teased over a shared pot of tanna.

"I'm just thinking about Terrgor Secludes, the loss of those titans would be a heavy blow to the Imperium, and Emperor save us if those greenskins get their filthy hands on sacred titan. I was just thinking it would make more sense to slag the useless fraking hunk of rock and be done with it."

I coolly replied, trying to hid my trepidation at the thoughts of what might really lurk on the surface of Terrgor Primus. Whether it was necrons, tyranids, eldar, or even the tau, personally I was pulling for the Tau, they could at least be counted on to fight fair, if Amberly needed Jurgen's help it was sure to be nasty.

"True enough Cain," Regina allowed, "And to tell you the truth, I wondered the same thing to Lord General Zyvan, and he himself would have been in favor of exterminatus."

I felt a glimmer of hope growing in my breast, and I carefully asked, "Then why don't we do just that? We can surely find more orcs to kill elsewhere, maybe on a nice cool planet."

Regina smiled openly at that one and winked at me, she knew I personally was not a lover of iceballs as she was, but appreciated the sentiment. "Well, you didn't hear this from me, but Zyvan may have off handedly mentioned Inquisitorial interest in seeing the ruins on Primus preserved."

My heart thumped nosily, and I saw Amberly's hand at work.****** If the inquisition had made an open move, it was surely even more dangerous than I thought.

"Well," I said casually, trying to maintain my air of a battle hardened hero instead of the skulking coward I was,* "We had best not let the inquisition's prize go to waste then."

*Cain here simply does not give himself enough credit. A shining paragon of the Emperor's will he might not have been, but he was a tried and true hero by this point.

If only I had known what really awaited me down on Terrgor Primus, and the events that would unfold afterwards I would have... Well, actually, this time I would have landed with a song in my heart and a bouquet for Amberly and kissed the Imperium goodbye forever. As much as I enjoyed serving the Emperor, going to a galaxy with no Chaos gods, xenos that actually didn't seem to mind being ruled by humanity and best of all, no necrons, was the best thing that ever happened to me. I would sooner face a Reaper then a Tomb Lord any day of the week.

Which brings me back to the absolutely awful morning I was having. As much as I would like to thank the eldar witch for bringing me to Citadel Space now, at that point I simply wanted to put a laze beam through her head.

"Well, what's your plan now." I growled at Amberly, who was crouching with me and Jurgen******* behind a small stone wall.

"Well, we could always try negotiating." Amberly suggested, smiling at me as she prepared to take another shot with her bolt pistol.

"Oh, that sounds like a great idea." I grumbled. As I stood up to take another shot at the eldar guardians keeping us pinned down while I was certain that squad of howling banshee's we had tangled with earlier circled around to flank us, I shouted "Hey, xeno frackers, want to negotiate?"

The fire of their weapons petered off, and I distinctly heard a male eldar voice say. "Finally. Idiot mon'keigh sees reason."

I glanced at Amberly, and could see she was just as surprised as me. "Was that a yes?" I called back, "Or should we just keep shooting at one another?"

"It was a yes, mon'keigh." The same voice replied, closer this time.

"And what exactly are we negotiating?" Amberly asked, quickly standing and pointing her bolter at the guardian leader who was now a mere twenty paces away.

"That is not for me to tell you, mon'keigh. Come, the farseer will explain." He beckoned for us to follow.

I stood as well, training my laze pistol on him. "And how do we know it's not a trap?" I asked, taking careful aim at the xeno's skull.

"Because, mon'keigh, if you do not come with me, I will allow the Banshee's to strike." He said, indicating behind us.

I glanced behind me and felt my mouth dry. I had been wrong, it was not the squad from before. They had brought their friends, and there were fully two score howling banshee's showing themselves behind us.

"Sir, I think I can take them." Jurgen calmly said, training his melta on the nearest aspect warrior.

"Amberly dear, I thought you said it was only a small group of xenos." I pleasantly remarked to her.

"And, Cain dear, I was fairly certain there were at most two-score xenos here. I'm afraid I was wrong though." She replied, far more happily then I would have been if I had suddenly realized there were likely hundreds of eldar skulking about the ruins.

"Stand down Jurgen." I calmly ordered. I turned back the guardian leader. "Fine, take us to your witch, we will talk."

At that moment, a sudden sense of vertigo came over me, similar to the sensation that I often felt when traveling through the warp. This one, however, was different. Normally the sensation seemed to last an eternity. This time, it did. It felt like hours and hours, and soon time began to lose all meaning. After I began to think it would never end, the sensation abruptly stopped. I did my best not to let my discomfort show, but it was all I could do to remain standing. Our eldar guide seemed to be fairing even worse, he looked about three sheets to the wind. Straightening my Commissars cap, I cleared my throat and strode forward.

"Well then, let's get this over with."

I tried not to preen when the eldar glared daggers at me. "It is already over, you just do not know it."

With that ominous prediction hanging over our heads, we descended into the ruins. A pair of warp spiders lay unconscious on the floor, several eldar in clothing I had never seen tending to them.

"Are those?" I whispered quietly to Amberly, indicating the strange eldar with a nod.

"Yes. Civilians. We need to get to the bottom of this." She replied, her eyes hardening. Perhaps she was now considering my suggestion of exterminatus.******** Hopefully, not while we were still on the planet.

"No harm will come to you while you are on this planet unless you begin hostilities Mon'Keigh." The guardian said, watching us as we studied the civilians. "Please do not begin them, your deaths would be most inconvenient."

"Shame that." I drawled, hiding my tension.

"We will keep the peace as long as you do, xenos." Amberly said cheerily, meaningfully stroking her bolt pistol.

"On your word, Commissar. Lady Inquisitor." Jurgen said softly, patting his melta. The poor man wasn't even trying to maintain a calm demeanor, he WAS calm. I am sure in whatever organ passed for Jorgan's tortured mind, he was certain that as long as he was with me, he was perfectly safe. I was not looking forward to dispelling his illusion.

We wove through layers and layers of dug out earth, much of it fresh construction. Xenos where packed in, and I quickly gave up counting, there were thousands of them, and I was far closer to them then I had ever wanted to be. Strangely, they looked at me with curiosity or hope, not with the outright hostility I expected from a pack of filthy xenos. This mission was getting stranger by the minute, and I was starting to wonder just what exactly the eldar witch was planning. Fortunately, we had an ace in the hole so to speak, in the form of Jorgan's special qualities. Anyone who stood near him would be blocked from influence from the warp, and the witch's abilities would be rendered useless.

We wove in and out of passageways, until even my sense of direction was thrown a bit off. I could tell we had come down rather far though, so far in fact I almost expected to see lava bubbling out from the cracks. Finally, we reached a massive chamber, and I guessed it was at near the center of the entire complex. It was only dimly lit at the entrance, and I could not see its edges or the ceiling, but I guessed you could probably fit the entire 597th with equipment in the chamber and have them run combat drills.

A small circle of eldar stood on the threshold, and they turned to face us as we approached. Several bowed and moved out of our way. I fingered my chain sword. Xenos acting strangely was the first sign that things were about to get messy. Looking around the chamber, I could sense airflow from multiple directions, and started fixing the nearest location in my mind. It would make an excellent escape route when things went all to the warp.

As the eldar parted, a tall female in the trappings of a witch became visible, sitting cross-legged on the ground with her eyes closed. I tried to breath normally, but the last time I had been this close to an eldar witch, she had tried to take my head off and I had narrowly avoided having the Black Bell rung for me, an encounter I was not overeager to repeat.

"Be at peace, Ciaphas Cain, Amberly Veil, and the Hidden One. We mean you no harm." She spoke softly, almost a whisper, but it sent chills down my spine knowing it was the voice of a such a treacherous foe of mankind.

"What exactly do you want, Farseer? Teela, isn't it?" Amberly asked, her town bouncy and light, though I could tell from the way she was holding herself she was just as terrified as I was.*********

Her eyes opened, and she held out a hand to Amberly while she remained seated. "I am weakened, Amberly. Would you please help me stand?"

This took me quite aback. In my experience, eldar had two ways of dealing with humans, either as pawns or as obstacles to be removed. Since Teela wasn't trying to kill us, I assumed she was manipulating us. Accurately, as it turned out, but I suppose in the end I didn't really mind.**********

Amberly paused, then took the witch's hand and helped her to her feat. I didn't realize it, but all the eldar surrounding us had tensed until Amberly took Teela's hand, and once the farseer was on her feat they all seemed to relax. I wasn't sure what they had been worried about, there were a dozen of them, and even with Jurgen's melta our only hope would have been to blast our way out and run for the hills, even if I did throw Amberly to the xenos my escape would have been dicey at best.

The witch turned to me and held out her hand. "Ciaphas Cain. It is a pleasure to see you in the flesh. Well met."

I glanced and Amberly, and when she nodded I gingerly took Teela's hand. It was warm and light, surprisingly delicate. I shuddered at the thought of the millions of good Imperial Citizens that had met their fates at her touch, doomed by the same hand I was now carefully shaking.

To my astonishment, she turned to Jurgen once she had let go of my hand, and offered hers to my odious adjutant. "Hidden one, I am glad you came, for your help may be the key to our salvatioin."

The use of the term hidden one frankly scared the frak out of me, as it meant she knew about Jurgen's resistance to the warp, and probably meant her scheming xeno mind had already found away around it and was treacherously subverting us as we stood their talking.

Jurgen just looked at the hand, then pulled an icon of the Emperor out of one of his innumerable pouches and waved it in her face. Laughing, Teela withdrew her hand. It was a surprisingly light and airy sound, and I had to stamp down hard on a feeling that she might almost be human. She was a xenos, and her ways were wicked and bereft of the Emperor's light.

"Perhaps that is for the best." She then turned back to Amberly and I, and smiled brightly. "Today is a new day for all of us. I suggest we join forces and eradicate the orcs on this planet, then begin rebuilding and restoring this world. I and my officers will gladly integrate into your command structure, as long as you ex-Inquisitor or the former Commissar are in overall command, I feel you will deal with us fairly."

"It's not ex-Inquisitor." Amberly said, smiling sweetly as she rubbed the ring I knew contained a deadly assassination device, and I imagine the witch understood the significance, "Nor is Cain a former Commissar. We are both servants of his Imperial Majesty, and unless you care to tell me what exactly is going on, I may just start the exterminatus that planet obviously needs here and now."

To my utter astonishment, the eldar witch blushed. I couldn't hide my gape of astonishment. She was acting almost girlish, far from the cold manipulations and arrogant superiority I was used to in her kind. What was her ploy? I guarded my soul well, knowing that she would try and destroy everything that made me who I was if I allowed her. Though when that did happen, I will admit I rather enjoyed it.

"Oh, my apologizes. I am so... Unprepared, for what this is truly like. I am afraid I and my kind have grown to used to using the warp as a crutch, and now that we find it pure and clean, it overwhelms us."

At this point I could no longer hold my tongue, the witch was simply speaking to much nonsense. "A clean warp? What the frak is wrong with you, you and your kind xeno are responsible for half the horrors that plague humanity that come from that vile place."

In response, the witch giggled, and hid her face behind her hand. Several of the other eldar tittered as well, and as I watched her I once again forced my emotions under control. She was manipulating me, and parts of my anatomy were starting to think being manipulated by this seemingly beautiful creature would not be such a bad thing. But a moment of laxity led to a lifetime of heresy I reminded myself, and steeled myself once more.

"Oh you truly cannot tell, forgive me. We are no longer in the Imperium, we are beyond your Emperor, we are beyond the vile Gods of Chaos. We have left, never to return, for I have destroyed the device that brought us here."

My mouth went dry, but I reminded myself that xenos spoke only lies. Beyond the reach of the Emperor? No longer in the Imperium? What was this witch playing at?

"My faith is a shield proof against your blandishments, witch." I responded.

"Enough!" Amberly roared, her previously blithely happy mask gone, "What are you playing at Teela? What was that warp sensation we felt? What horrors have you unleashed?"

Regaining her composure, Teelah sighed as if explaining a simple fact to a juvie. "It is simple dear Amberly. We have traveled through the Warp to another universe. We have escaped our pasts. The future is ours."

*If I remember, I had been the picture of politeness at the time, but some big baby did not enjoy having the sheets yanked off him.

**For once, Cain's rather egocentric view is correct, even my brothers and sisters in the inquisition had no idea of Terrgor Primus's true nature.

***The capacity for feral orks to make the rapid jump to space faring in a remarkably short time was a feat that baffled the Imperium's greatest minds until my untimely departure from the Emperor's worlds.

****The Valhallan's hatred of orks was as nearly legendary as their love of worlds bereft of anything resembling warmth.

*****Cain's aid de camp, Jurgen, was a rare individual gifted with immunity to the warp, along with various other things as we would discover later.

******Actually, I had had nothing to do with it, nor had any inquisitor that Ordo Xenos was aware of. Naturally, I had thought perhaps one of the other branches, such as the lunatics in Ordo Mallus had taken an interest in the ruins and had set out immediately, and had discovered the real culprits for the misinformation fed the Imperial Guard.

*******Jurgen and I.

********Indeed I was, destroying that many eldar was far more valuable then figuring out what they were up to in my mind.

*********More. I knew exactly who we were dealing with, and Teela was known as a farseer who was especially skilled in her manipulations of the servants of the Emperor, as our presence showed.

***********And to a degree the galaxy would not know until Teela was good and ready to show it.

From the Journal of Commander Jane Shepard, Systems Alliance Fleet.

I love my ship. Part of it is my girlish love of shiny things. Not very lady like or befitting of a famous hero, but hey, what can I say, I am a selfish girl on the inside. Growing up on the streets, I didn't have time for a lot of nice toys, so now that I get the very best ones, I love them. Get over it.

The Normandy is a beautiful ship, the best damn vessel in the fleet, no matter what those fuckers back at fleet comm say about "over budget freighter we could have built a fleet instead of," the Normandy is worth a thousand of those rust buckets they churn out like cheap designer dresses. She's sleek, she's fast, and she's nearly invisible. And she has a charming, beautiful, intelligent commander who unlike certain members of the Council did not have her head up her ass. Heh, I would have given half a year's pay to see their faces when they were informed I wasn't coming to save their sorry asses from Sovereign. Serves them right. Too bad about the Destiny Ascension, she was almost as much of a ship as the Normandy.

So when a giant planet pops right the fuck out of nowhere with all its celestial bodies and causes a giant fucking asteroid to plow right into the side of my ship, I am understandably pissed off to no small degree.

"THE FUCK WAS THAT!" The charming, beautiful captain roared as she disentangled herself from the almost as charming and beautiful asari who had been sharing her bed. Scratch that, Liara is MORE charming and beautiful as me. Just don't tell her I said that, her head is big enough as it is.

"I... I don't know!" Liara gasped as she struggled up.

The door, which I normally lock when it's sexy time, and I had been CERTAIN I had locked before Liara and I retired, was forced open rather rudely by a turian who was cruising for a bruising.

"Commander, we're hit, I... I am going to wait right outside." Garrus spun on his heels, not even bothering to try and force the door shut again.

"No shit Garrus." I growled, and without stopping stomped over and flung the door all the way open.

I think I almost made Pressley's eyes pop out of his head when he saw me standing there naked, but there simply wasn't time to get dressed. "XO, status report!" I barked, running over to the galaxy map.

Credit where credit is due, the crew knew their job. They all knew Liara and I bunked together, but they also wisely decided I was correct in thinking there wasn't time to get my panties on. They all barely glanced at me then got back to work.

"Our port engines are gone ma'am, something came out of nowhere and struck them." Pressley reported, sending a full damage report to my screen.

I punched the comm to the bridge. "Joker, what the fuck is wrong with you? Your eyes crippled too now?"

"Commander, you really, really need to come up here and see this. I don't think I can explain it." Joker replied, and something in his voice told me that this time, the shit had well and truly hit the fan.

I dashed up to the bridge, and Joker glanced at me, his face a mask of confusion and terror. When he didn't make a quip about my nudity, the way my boobs bounced, or even leer a little, I knew he wasn't playing around.

"Commander, whatever hit us, it wasn't there until it did so." Joker said, turning back around as he furiously punched in commands.

I leaned over the council, trying to see what the hell he was talking about. Damn. Unless our instruments, the navigation charts, and Jokers skill as a pilot all evaporated at once, he wasn't lying. That rock had only appeared on our scans 1.76 seconds AFTER we hit it. When we impacted, it actually showed as not even being there. Considering we were traveling at post-relativistic speeds when we did, perhaps it wasn't.

"The fuck is this." I breathed, looking over it. "It's like we hit something that didn't even show up until after we were by."

"Actually commander I think that's a good possibility. If we had impacted a rock that size, even a brush, the Normandy would be dust right now considering how fast we were going." Joker agreed.

"Jane." Liara whispered behind me, and quickly slid my bath robe onto my shoulders. I shrugged it on, not even turning to smile at the only person on my boat allowed to call me by my first name.

"But that's not why I called you up here Commander. That is." Joker said, pointing to a planet out of the view port.

Glancing at the chronometer, I knew that we should be passing through a system that had no planets. We should have just discharged our drive core before continuing on our patrol for geth in the terminus, fleet comms idea of getting me out of the way before I embarrassed them to much by ranting about reapers. But they weren't the ones with the visions in their head. They were not the ones who knew the devastation that would be wrought when the reapers came back. I was. And I was going to be ready.

What I had not been ready for though was a giant planet popping right the fuck out of nowhere.

"Joker, that should not fucking be here." I said, squinting at the planet. It was sorta brownish, with a few shallow seas and scattered greenery. Probably a garden world then, even if it wasn't an especially appealing one. Even a poor garden world though was valuable, it in a well explored system like this it would have been logged and recorded.

"No Commander, it shouldn't. And I watched it show up. Watch." Joker called up the ships camera feed from a few minutes before. Cruising through FTL, lots of blue shifted stuff, then BAM, collision, immediate falling out of FTL. I winced, my poor baby! Who ever had done that was going to fucking pay.

A few seconds of empty space, and warning pings as the scanners picked up things popping out of nowhere. Then BOOM! Huge, fucking planet, right there. What. The. Hell.

"Goddess." Liara breathed, and I felt her hand in mine. I gave it a squeeze. God, I was scared too.

"What are the scanners showing Joker?" I demanded, squinting at the planet.

"Fuck all Commander. That impact shook us up to hell and gone. I have limited maneuvering, and maybe about 2% forward thrust. But no comms, and scanners are busted up all to hell." Joker angrily said, slamming the council in frustration.

"And I think that impact broke my fucking ribs. Dammit." He muttered, still furiously imputing commands.

I straightened up, my eyes narrowing. This was either a very good thing or a very bad thing. And I was going to find out.

"Then take us over there and find us a good landing zone Joker. We're going to find out what the hell is going on here. By the time the Alliance realizes we won't be making our scheduled check-ins and sends someone to investigate, who knows what might happen."

"Aye aye Commander. We have limited thrusters though, so it's going to be a few hours. I have enough power for us to land though."

I nodded, straightening my hair, thinking furiously. "All right, you tell me if the scanners pick up anything, even a hint of what the hell is happening."

"Aye aye ma'am."

"We'll be in my quarters." I grabbed Liara's hand and walked her back to my quarters, carefully sliding the door shut.

"Well." I said, sitting in my chair and pulling out my bottle of Southern Comfort. It was cracked, but it still held most of its liquid. I poured two glasses and handed one to Liara.

"Well indeed. Thank you." Liara murmured, and quickly drank her entire shot in one gulp. I followed her example and poured us refills.

"You ever hear of anything like this? Any prothean tech that could make a planet appear out of nowhere with all its celestial bodies?" I asked, swirling the amber liquid in my glass thoughtfully.

"No. Nothing that the prothean's had suggests that they had the knowledge to move entire worlds." Liara shakily replied.

I finished my shot and took her hands in mine. She was wearing her matching bathrobe, the ones we had bought on Illium for our celebratory "date night" before our deployment to the butt crack of nowhere. A shopping spree of such epic proportions had seldom been seen even on that planet before, though I had to admit it's pale green fabric really brought out the blue in her... Well, everything. Her hands stopped shaking as I touched them, and I gazed into her eyes.

"You know what that means then." I whispered, and she nodded. Neither of us spoke the name aloud, like we were two scared little girls afraid to whisper the name of boggy men. Reapers. Fuck it, Candle Jack Candle Jack Candle Jack. If that fucker can't get me, neither can they. Nothing is going to separate me and Liara, not even them.

We put on our clothes and lay on the bed together, just holding each other close. Neither of us knew the hell we were getting into, but at least we had each other going there. I started to doze off, but the comm woke me and we scrambled up.

"Status report!" I barked.

"About to enter atmo commander, thought I would let you know."

"Got it. Send Garrus down to the mako. We're going in hot to secure a landing zone for you."

"Rodger that."

We scrambled to the elevator, and the ride down seemed to take forever. Who knew what we were going to find down there? Garrus was waiting for us, and I nodded to the stoic turian as we boarded.

Garrus is a good kid, if a little idealistic and hot headed. He's smart though, and he follows my orders pretty well, and he's both a crack shot and handy with an omni tool. A good guy to have on your side, really. Me, I just like to use guns. Guns, guns and more guns. Also grenades. I love grenades. Garrus thinks he's a better shot then me, but he's just kidding himself. You can fight like a Krogan or run like a Leopard, but you will NEVER be better then Commander Shepard.

The ride down in the mako was bumpy as usual, but I handled it. If the Normandy is my lady, the mako is our baby, and I take good care of her. I earned top marks in both piloting and gunnery on the mako, and I've been told I'm the only person in the galaxy who can make the mako ride as smooth as a BWM, but like I said, no one's better then Commander Shepard.

As soon as we hit though, all hell broke loose. Giant, green aliens started running toward us waving of all things, axes and firing wildly into the air.

"Looks like hostiles. " Garrus calmly remarked, and I almost turned around and hugged him. He had punctuated his quip with the roar of the chain gun, the giant rounds shredding the onrushing aliens.

The Shepard school of diplomacy is proven to be 100% effective in all first contact experiences, and I was glad to see Garrus applying it with both barrels.

I quickly turned the mako and speed off away from the aliens. No need to give them a clear target, they might actually hit something, and those guns looked pretty big, though they appeared to be primitive chemical rounds they were big enough that the few that scattered off our shields drained them a surprising amount.

"Joker, this LZ is no good. Multiple hostiles, unknown species. Assume orbit and make what repairs you can there. Try and radio the fleet."

"Aye aye ma'am." Joker radioed back. "Take care of yourself commander."

I laughed. "Don't worry about me, feel sorry for these stupid green bastards."

Out the dust trail we were leaving multiple hostile contacts appeared, more of the green aliens riding what looked like utterly ridiculous Harleys. I snorted in derision. They were no match for my baby, and Garrus calmly and efficiently took them out one at a time. But there were just so MANY of the damn things.

As we crested a rise, I felt my heart flutter. Before us was a massive military deployment, scattered throughout what looked like ancient ruins. Blocky guns pointed in our direction, and several heavy weapons positions were rather near us for comfort. There were also a large number of treaded vehicles with mounted weapons, a few of which turned questioningly in our direction. Fortunately, they weren't firing. The green things behind us sure as hell were, so I headed for them. Maybe they would be friendly.

Then again, maybe krogan would become fans of sparkles and rainbows. Fat chance.

We roared down the hill, hotly pursued by a literal swarm of the motorbikes driving ahead of what my sensors showed to be a sea of the green things on foot. More rounds from our pursuers were spattering off our shields which were now draining at a rather discomforting rate. It looked like we were going to make it to the lines of whoever it was there, and as the first bike crested the hill one of those big stubby guns opened up and dropped a load of explosive ordinance that scattered the green alien all over the landscape.

"Jane, are they friendly?" Liara yelled, pointing at the army on our view screen we were hurtling toward.

"Fuck me if I know, but those other ones are shooting at us, and these guys aren't. Get me a visual on what they look like though, don't want to run toward a bunch of Reaper troops." I ordered, thinking furiously. Maybe we could drive along their lines and escape, though the green tide approaching behind us was going to put a crimp in that plan to say the least.

"Commander!" Liara gasped, and I glanced to look at what she had pulled up, then had to snap back as I almost flipped the mako. The view screen clearly showed a blonde human woman shouting orders.

"Well, I'll be damned." I muttered. "Looks like we're saved after all."

I drove up to where the woman was shouting orders and popped the hatch, scrambling out.

"Halt, xeno filth! You stand before the might of-"

"The fuck are you yelling about Sergeant!" I screamed, ripping my helmet off.

The soldiers gasped in shock, and I took a second look at the woman, who was staring at me.

"Or you will be if you don't tell me what the fuck is going on right the hell now Lieutenant, status report!" I screamed. Their uniforms didn't look like any merc group I had ever seen before, but I figured they would respect my pull anyway.

"Er, who are you, you don't have authorization to-" The lieutenant stammered, trying to regain control of the situation.


"Er, yes ma'am?" The man stammered, his eyes wide.

"Use the vehicle as cover, get a field of fire, the whole god damn world is about to drop on you heads and those greenskins look like they want to skin you alive and eat your guts! You mean want that?" I bellowed, striding over and pointing at where I wanted the men.

"No ma'am!" He replied, snapping off a salute I returned.

I turned back to the flustered Lieutenant. "And who the fuck are you?" I demanded, stabbing a finger into her body armor.

"1st Lieutenant Jenit Sulla, Commander!" The woman replied, firing off a salute.

"As you were Lieutenant, get me a runner, I need to speak for whatever passes for your commander around here. Some serious shit is going on down here, and I need to know what your intel is." Hopefully the commander would know how the hell this rock had ended up here and what those green aliens were.

"Yes ma'am!" She replied, and turned around to start giving orders.

I radioed Liara and Garrus in the mako. "Stay here and watch my back, maneuver and keep those aliens off us."

"Yes ma'am." Garrus radioed back, and the canon on the mako continued to scythe down row up on row of the manically suicidal aliens.

"This way ma'am." A trooper called, and I followed him off at a jog toward their command structure.

And that was how I, Jane Shepard, and two "xenos" joined the Imperial Fucking Guard. God, what the fuck have I gotten myself into.

Authors Note:

A few things. Firstly, no, this is not going to replace Keelah Se'lai if you were wondering. This is just something I've had jumbling around in my head for a while. It's not going to update very frequently, probably once a month at most because my main focus is still Keelah Se'lai.

Next, let me know what you think of this. I have Keelah Se'lai planned out pretty much to the end, and I am starting to wonder what project I should take on next. If you think this is good, let me know and I'll focus on this after I am done.

Lastly, Shepard can speak Gothic through space magic. Shut up. I wanted it to work this way so I waved the magic deus ex wand and... Wait, no. Actually her ship was caught in the warp and the Normandy's crew absorbed knowledge of the gothic language that way. Or maybe the warp caused everyone who spoke gothic to now speak English. Whatever. The eldar did it.