She was fine, godsdamnit. She punched the bag that swung in an arc from the ceiling. It was satisfying to punch the hell out of it. Sweat stung the new scars on her face. Scars that would never go away. Scars she didn't want to go away. She had earned every single damn one of them.

She was freaking fine. Why then... WHACK... wouldn't Garrus touch her? They were living together, here, at the apartment. But he had the room across the way. He claimed she needed time to recover her health.

If he didn't get it in his head soon, she was going to remind him who was in charge around here...

"Good afternoon, General Vakarian," the AI installed in their apartment intoned the standard greeting.

"Where is Commander Shepard?"

She swung at the bag. Irritated.

"She is working out, General,"

Garrus leaned against the doorframe, watching Kaya beat the hell out of the worn leather bag that hung in the workout room. By the Spirits, the woman was sexy as hell. She had on this tight sleeveless tank that showed off arms that were curved with hard muscle and slick with sweat. She had long black pants that clung to her thighs then fell to the floor in soft folds. Her hair was scraped back off her face with a tie.

"Feeling better, Shepard?"

Kaya slammed a fist into the leather again, and turned to face him. Anger was glimmering in her eyes.

"Uh oh," Garrus nearly took a step back, "What did I do?" He held up his hands, palms out in a gesture of peace.

"Nothing," she snapped with annoyance.

"Nothing?" he seemed relieved. Then paused. Frowned, "But you have a mad on. For me. If I didn't do anything..."

Kaya stripped off one glove and threw it at him. Startled, he missed the catch and it hit him in the chest.

"What..." he protested. And barely ducked the other one, "Shepard! What the hell?"

"Nothing is exactly the damn problem!" she growled, and crossed her arms over her chest, "If you want out of all this, Vakarian, you only have to say. We killed the Reapers, saved the day. Now we have to get back to normality. I'm rejoining N7 and the need to go rebuild Palaven."

Garrus fluttered his mandibles. And stepped into the room. His lean, muscular form was clad in a black formfitting tunic. His voice was very soft.

"Is that what you want, Shepard?"

"It's what is going to happen, right?" Shepard's knuckles whitened on her arms, "You have to pull away, I get it."

Garrus made a soft sound in his chest, "When you approached me on the Normandy, it took me a little while to understand. I'm not..the most clued in of turian's when it comes to matters of the heart."

He took another step forward until he stood almost toe to toe with her. She looked up at him, whole again, though her eyes were filled with shadows and sadness.

"But when we finally get it," he reached up with a talon and traced a line from her brow to her jawline to her chin, "It's forever."

Shepard was silent, uncertain.

"You have always been so confident, my love," Garrus continued, "Always the one with the right answer, the right thing to say. Now, it's my turn to give it a shot."

He took her hands in his own and she allowed it, unresisting, still watching him warily.

"You are my clan, Kaya Shepard. Without you, I am not Garrus Vakarian. Without me, you are not Kaya Shepard. There is no Vakarian without Shepard," he touched a hand to his heart, "You live here. All the time. I could travel to Palaven today, and tomorrow you resume your duties as Spectre and Alliance Commander. But at the centre of it, at the heart of it, it would not matter where you had to go..."

Garrus rested his forehead against her own.

" are in my heart. And that is all that matters."

There is silence. A long silence.


"Damn..." she murmured, her voice thick with tears. She crept her arms around his lean waist and stepped into his embrace.

Garrus enfolded her. His arms were long; though she was no tiny waif, he encircled her easily.

They stood like that for many moments. Kaya recovering her equilibrium and Garrus, well he frankly looked smugly satisfied. She shifted in his arms a little until her head tucked under his chin. Her breath flowed across his neck and it raised a chill down his spine.

His right hand slid from her upper back to the hollow at the small of her back, while the left slid into her hair. He felt her lips press against the soft flesh of his throat, and he couldn't stop the shudder. A flicker of her tongue rose a growl from his lips and his hand slid further down to cup her backside and tug her a little closer. She uttered something that sounded like a sigh of pleasure and tucked her groin against his long, muscular thigh. Without armour, he could feel her heat, her arousal and groaned again.

Kaya slid her lips over his scarred mandible, licking the sensitive flesh. Her nimble fingers undid the closures on his formal tunic and slid within to explore the contours of his well muscled chest. His hand slid up under her tank and splayed against her sweaty flesh. Muscles rippled under his attention. She found his lips and though they were not mobile pillows of flesh, they still had a vast array of nerve endings that shot heat to his groin. She kissed him, and her tongue touched his own, just the lightest caress. And retreated. He firmed his grasp on her head and pulled her up again. She thrust her tongue into his mouth again this time his own tangled with hers.

Her thigh made contact with the juncture of his groin as she ground against his leg and made a soft sound of desire against his lips. He was erect, solid and by the spirits, ready and able to connect with his woman again.

She tugged at his tunic and awkwardly yanked it off. And he removed her tank in turn. Scars patterned her chest and shoulders. New scars. Still red and livid - but healed. He broke the kiss and ran his lips and tongue down her neck. She whimpered with desire and clutched his hips to keep her upright, before seeking the closure of his pants. He slid long fingers down her sides, his tongue laving first one nipple, then the other. His talons hooked the waistband of her pants and slid them down her long legs. The curls at the juncture of her thighs beckoned to him and he carefully slid one taloned finger into the folds. She rocked onto his hand, seeking friction, her nails digging into the plates on his shoulders.

He undid his pants with one hand and straightened. He slid his finger in and out of her building tension, while his other held her upright. Naked, he backed her the pace or two to the wall, and grasping her right leg, lifted it so he could move between her thighs. She rested against the cool surface, using the leverage to tilt her hips against him.

He was heavy and hard, and when his length probed her she tilted her head back and breathed slowly, concentrating. He leaned forward and ran his tongue over her neck, caressing the soft flesh with the rough surface. She shuddered, and he felt her relax...and open. He slid home and had to pause before he came then and there. Breathing hard, he rested his brow on the cool tile of the wall.

"Gods, Garrus," she panted, "I had forgotten..."

"I hadn't," he growled, and pressing her against the wall, he slowly thrust and she cried out with pleasure.

It was slow at first. It had been a while. But they remembered the moves. And as he drove into her, she could not stay her cries of pleasure. She clutched him and thrust back.

"Oh Spirits, I cannot...I'm..." he groaned, sweat slicking them both together.

"Do it," Shepard spoke through gritted teeth, "Do it harder...I'm nearly there..."

"Aye aye, Commander," and set his cock to the task of pleasuring the woman before him. She slid a hand down to her groin and circled herself while he thrust, "That's it.." He murmured into her ear, "Next round, I want my tongue where your fingers are, circling, flicking. I have been told I have a very agile tongue."

Shepard's head fell back as she cried out her climax. He carefully tried to pull out, but she clutched her leg around him. "No," came the weak demand, "In me. Stay."

And he was undone. One more thrust into that glorious slick heat and he came. A lot. It had been a while. When he finally withdrew it dripped on the floor. She staggered, her knees giving way and he grabbed her in time.

"Wow," she wrapped her arms around his neck as he pulled her up into his arms, "Now that was worth waiting for."

Garrus laughed, the sound a sexy rumble in his chest, and his voice was affectionate, "You were worth the wait, Shepard."

"Now I think I need a shower."

"Your wish is my command," he looked down at her. And she smiled up at him.

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