They danced between the stars, their awareness touching every mind there. They made love in the heart of a dwarf star, at the bottom of the deepest ocean, even flirted with the singularities that would trap even them. And sometimes...just because breaking the rules is fun and its good to remember that you can, they wore the flesh and watched from mortal eyes the lives of the people they loved as they strove ever onward. They despaired when they fell and they exulted when they rose. He saw things that made him feel a child again and understood why Shepard had appeared as such from time to time. There was so much to see and do, there was no end to it and he rejoiced that fact.
They interfered occasionally, but never out of the need to control or harness, only for love, always for love and the universe was merciful and seemed to understand and let them, without too much painful consequence.
And there were battles, monumental battles that were more metaphor than viscera as the waves on that beach that wasn't a beach brought horrors to their shore, threatened the worlds they were entrusted with. But they weren't alone any more on that strand, the light of the one that was the rachni queen, majestic and pure, stayed to stem the tide. The one who was Garrus, and was still Garrus in every way that mattered, protected his Jane as he'd done with his flesh and blood, with the sword of his mind and the shield of his will. They were still a devastating duo and no being could stand against them. They fulfilled the promise that the one named Leviathan made so long ago, to stay for as long as possible and protect, just protect until others arose to fill the ranks.
And they made children, glorious children, they passed the spark they carried on to ones who desired it, and with joy they watched their children grow strong, brave and true. Beautiful in their struggles. Friends joined them eventually and left, too, for that far horizon or they shattered themselves or they simply stayed. The small ones played in the shallows until the next tide swept them out to sea, he could hear their laughter as they drifted away, already finding marvels.
A thousand years, two thousand years, one hundred thousand years, time had no meaning there, he knew. And the peoples they'd left behind would all come join them one day, this he also knew. New life would spring up in their absence, new shapes to house the light. And here, there was only the tide and its wonders, only the fighting, the striving, because that will never end, it was a joyful constant, maybe the only one. He didn't know and that was a marvelous thing. He stood on that twilit beach and looked out to sea, the pull of the horizon was strong, so very strong and he wondered what his friends were doing out there, in all that glory and thought that maybe he saw sails on the margins of this sphere. Shepard stood with him, her hand in his and he looked down into her face, 'You waited for me. You would have waited for me even if I'd gone out there.'
She nodded, the flames of her hair drifting idly through the air, the gold flecks in her eyes dancing, 'I would have waited forever."
He swept her into an embrace and she laughed in exultation. Here was rightness, here was truth, it had always been so.
And one day when they were small enough, maybe they'd go find out what was on that distant horizon.
Liara set down the datapad with a sigh, the note from Garrus that she received after the miracle she witnessed seared into her mind, 'We wait on a golden shore for you and all those we love.'
She felt water run from her eyes and realized she was weeping, but she didn't feel sorrow, never would feel sorrow for the two who left, because they weren't really gone. She yearned already to see it, that place that they'd found and knew it wasn't time, wouldn't be for a very long time. She'd carried the knowledge of that other being that was in Shepard for so long, heard the song that was Leviathan and had been changed by it, because she'd heard it in herself as well. And it called out to them, all of the shards of that being.
"Momma, why are you crying?" Her daughter asked, looking up into her face soulfully, sympathetic tears forming in her eyes and she dropped a hand on that small head with its blue tentacles that still shifted in childish lack of control and felt the song there, too.
"Because I'm happy, dearling. Momma's happy." She smiled a reassurance down into that frowning face, which had learned petulance from their father, "Now go find your father and sisters. They're probably outside playing mercs and Vagabonds."
She leaned back in her chair as the young asari darted off and hummed in thought. There was so much left to do. A funeral in state for her dearly departed friend. She'd schemed to have him exonerated and now, they demanded that the one they'd come to love as their leader in shadow be laid to rest with all the pomp he so richly deserved. She wondered if this would become a trend, to have the most deserving, but most unwilling person lead them from exile. A Shadow Commander, she mused with a smile. She shook free of her duties for now and sighed.
She picked up the datapad and opened a new entry, pecking out the title slowly.
'Transcendence: The Road of Consciousness.
There is in us, all of us, a place where the falling angel meets the rising beast. It is a place eternally at war, the conflict to give in to our base selves or rise to heights of wondrous exaltation. And if we strive, we will rise...'
A/N: I am sad, so very sad that it's over. Where do I go from here? *Sniff, wipes tear away.* Anyway, thank you all for reading my stories. I hope you like them and I hope that they make you feel something, hope at times, despair at others, not that I'm wishing negative emotions find you, but because there is no up without a down, no wrong without right and all those cliches that basically tell us that good things are never as profound without the bad things, too.
Thank you all for your generous praise, your reviews and critiques are always welcome and I will reply as best I can.
PS. The song that Shepard sang to Garrus near the end of Mass Exodus was Ave Maria, the Schubert version, it's so hauntingly beautiful. I'm sure you guys figured out what the songs from Mass Absolution were, gotta love google.