Disclaimer: I do not own Mass Effect. All right belong to Bioware. Please Enjoy.
Chapter 17: Mission Feros.
Vixen stepped into the colony that had taken root within Feros' Prothean ruins. Casting her eyes over the small pods the people used for houses, Vixen couldn't help but see that things seemed...off. The Feros colony wasn't exactly a new colony, existing for a few years now, but there was no trace of trying to make the area liveable or homely. No gardens to remind people of Earth if they missed the mud ball. No areas for children to play. Just dry ground with worn away paths created by the colonists over the years.
Then there were the people, giving Vixen curious but timid glances. Vixen felt uneasy. Garrus came up behind her, sliding his assault rifle on to his back.
“All clear?” Vixen asked, still keeping her eyes on the colony, watching the timid movements of the people as they scuttled about the area.
“Yeah, I think you got the last of them, Vix” Garrus spoke up.
“Don't I always” Vixen smirked towards the Turian. Garrus' mandibles fluttered as he gave a soft click. When the Normandy had arrived at Feros' docking bay, Vixen thought it was odd that no one from the colony or Exogeni was there to greet them. Her suspicions were confirmed when Vixen and her team encountered Geth as soon as they stepped off the Normandy's docking bay.
“I guess that means that Saren is here then.” Alenko's voice sounded. Vixen turned slightly, glancing over her shoulder at him as he put away his pistol. Alenko had been begging Vixen to take him on a mission so that he could prove his skills to her. Vixen may not have liked Alenko, or Williams for that matter, but she did need to fully test their abilities. Alenko was a different matter though, with his L2 implant it was 50/50 on whether he had a headache or not. One of those headache cause her to rethink when she had planned to take him on a small mission to bust some smuggling ring. Instead she took Williams and Tali, Williams wasn't a bad shot but she still had a lot to learn.
“Saren is long gone” Vixen spoke turning her attention back to the colony. Alenko's head snapped towards her, the expression on his face demanding an explanation.
“But what about the Geth?” Alenko questioned.
“Think about it. If Saren was here then we would have had a bigger welcoming party. As it was, the Geth were only there to warn any others that might have stayed behind to complete any work Saren left for them to do” Vixen explained.
“I suppose so” Alenko sighed as he looked back at the entrance to the docking bay, letting the information pass through his brain. Vixen started walking into the colony. Colonists averted their gaze or ran back into the buildings.
“Looks like the colonists aren't fond of visitors” Garrus summed up as a mother shushed her children back inside the buildings. Vixen hummed her agreement before moving into the middle of the colony. Something wasn't right, Vixen could feel it, but more than that. The colonists were acting like the Geth weren't outside their parameter and it was her team that had caused them the greatest crime.
“Okay. Garrus, Alenko. I want you two to talk to the people, see what you can learn. Garrus be careful of who you talk to, I get the feeling these people aren't fond of non-humans.” Vixen ordered as she turned her attention to her team. Garrus nodded while Alenko seemed to scope out which person to talk to first.
“What are you going to do, Vix?” Garrus asked.
“I'm going to talk to the sanest person here, that will most likely be their leader.” Vixen smiled but her voice didn't hold her normal mischief or joy that it usually held. It was firm and calm. Garrus nodded and nudged Alenko into action before turning and start walking around the colony. Vixen watched them both go, Alenko going straight to a mother who was hiding her children behind her as best she could. Garrus mean while seemed to go into detective mode, merely wondering about the colony with an objective eye. Vixen scanned through the people as she walked through the colony, mostly people were scared, others were angry. She couldn't blame them, the Geth were here ripping apart lives they wanted to start afresh. Though she still couldn't figure out what Saren would want with this colony, there had to be something.
A woman's shouting ripped through the heavy silence of the colony, people flinched at the sound as if they had woken up or the noise was too loud for their ears. Vixen walked over to where the shouting was taking place. A woman was shouting in a man's face, nearly screaming how the Geth were breaking through as she pointed to an entrance that led into a tower. Vixen's eye brow arched as she looked over the barricade that the colonists had constructed. Metal panels and a few heavy boxes weren't going to do much good against bullet fire. Vixen looked back, her team wasn't in view. Taking out her shotgun, Vixen walked past the screaming woman and quiet man. Hopped over the barricade and proceeded to shoot an unknowing Geth in the back of the headlight.
“Well, you certainly do a job thoroughly” Vixen chuckled as more Geth poured out from the walls and charged up the stairs. Bullets started flying, Vixen focused up a barrier before they could hit her or fly past to hit any unsuspecting colonists behind the poorly constructed barricade.
“Let's take this somewhere else” Vixen grinned as her biotics shone bright. The Geth paused for a moment as if to scan what Vixen was up to but before they could fire, Vixen charged. Her biotics grabbing onto the Geth and dragging them down the flies of stairs.
Geth crashed and collapsed at her feet, their metal structures making it difficult for them to get up. Vixen grinned as she felt the rush of battle, her biotics flaring around her as her grip on her shotgun tightened slightly.
“What do you mean the Commander just walked in?” Alenko cried out. Garrus groaned internally, he was getting as bad at the screaming woman. Garrus was talking to a Salarian merchant when he had heard the first shot. It hadn't taken long to find out what had happened from all the screaming and shouting. Alenko had joined him in moments and while Garrus looked at the biotic barrier that had been placed across the entrance, effectively blocking him from going through to help Vixen, Alenko was trying to calm down the people. There had been a few more shots fired but since then it had been silence and the tension was clawing at his insides.
“I meant what I said. She just walked in!” the woman yelled at Alenko. Garrus sighed as he went over to the arguing couple.
“Alenko, let me take over. Keep an eye out for Vixen” Garrus patted Alenko on the shoulder as he pointed over to the biotic barrier.
“Sure, Vakarian” Alenko groaned out, rubbing the back of his neck. He slowly walked over to the entrance to the tower. Garrus turned to the woman who seemed to shrink within herself slightly. Garrus could tell he'd have to choose his questions carefully with this woman.
“Miss, can you explain what happened here?” Garrus went into his detective mode, making his posture authoritative but relaxed. His tone even and calm. The woman seemed to come out of herself a bit but her eyes were still wide and darting to anywhere but Garrus.
“I was saying to Fai Dan, that the Geth were still in the tower and that they were about to over run us. Then I saw that red hair woman walk into the tower and shoot a Geth in the back of the head.” The woman explained. Garrus already put that together, but not to call over her team before going into a Geth infested tower.
“Me and Fai Dan went to try and bring her back but she had put up that barrier and then...there was this surge of biotic power...and she had the Geth just disappeared” The woman explained further. Garrus noted how shaken she was but not from the Geth, it seemed to be she was shaken from the biotic power Vixen used before going further into the tower. Garrus nodded and thanked the woman before walking over to Alenko who was examining the barrier. By the furrowed brow on his face it didn't look like he was having much luck.
“Anything?” Garrus asked. Alenko groaned and sighed as he stared at the barrier.
“I've never seen such a strong barrier before...well not one that needed an immense amount of concentration” Alenko spoke. Garrus huffed as he stared at the barrier, the shimmering blue almost mocking his inability to get past it. It wasn't like he couldn't climb up to get to other openings and cracks to get in that way, but it seemed the barrier stretched all the wall around the tower, blocking any access to the inside.
“Why would Vixen do this?” Garrus growled. Garrus was trained to keep the commander of any team safe. The soldiers under their command were mere cannon fodder if the commander wished it to be, and while many commanders did that there were the few that wanted to save everyone in their platoon. It was unheard of for a commander to go off on their own without their team, yet Vixen was doing just that. In fact, Vixen had done it many times during the last few missions. While in a fire fight with some smugglers, she disappeared and before he and Wrex knew it, all the smugglers had gone silent. They found Vixen bending over a desk, looking for any information, looking like she hadn't got a scratch on her as she wore her smile. Though the barrier was something new.
Alenko sighed as he started to walk off, maybe to continue with talking to the colonists.
“The alliance said she was a wild card but I didn't know she was this wild” Garrus heard Alenko muttering under his breath. Garrus' mandible flicked into a small smile of sorts. Vixen might be wild but that's what made her interesting. Suddenly the barrier faded and Garrus was hit by the faint smell of gunfire and burning oils. He didn't even know his legs were moving until he was nearly charging down the stairs and slammed into Vixen. Garrus lunged, grabbing Vixen by the waist and holding her close. Turning his body, his shoulder connected with the stone floor.
“Well...I don't think I've been welcomed like that before” Vixen groaned against his chest. Garrus couldn't help but let a chuckle escape his lips. He looked down at the mass of red and white hair as he still held her pressed against his chest. Strangely he didn't want to let go of her, the feel of her body against his. The smell of gunfire still filled the air and stuck to Vixen but her hair smelt of spices that were familiar to him.
“Garrus, you know you can let go of me now” Vixen spoke, her voice sounding soft. Garrus jolted from his thoughts.
“I'm sorry, Vix” His arms releasing her. Vixen chuckled as she sat up and smiled at the Turian.
“Don't worry about it, Garrus.” She said. Garrus was still new to human expressions, no matter how much he studied, but he swore. Vixen was faintly blushing. Garrus nodded and smiled back as he started to sit up. Suddenly his shoulder burst with pain, making him hiss sharply. Before he knew, Vixen was at his side, taking off the armour around his shoulder.
“Vixen, you don't need to...”
“Let me look at it, Garrus. It's partly my fault.” Vixen cut him off as she carefully took of his shoulder padding. Garrus watched her out of the corner of his eye. Her fingers were light and careful as they probed his shoulder almost as if they weren't doing anything at all. Her face held a serious expression but her eyes remained calm.
“Looks like you've dislocated your shoulder” Vixen spoke. Garrus looked to see that indeed his shoulder had slumped and only now was he noticing the pain that bloomed in his shoulder. His mandibles clasped tight against his face as he held back a hiss of pain.
“It's nothing, Vix. I'll go back to the Normandy and have Chakwas set me right.” Garrus tried to put on a smile.
“Don't say that it's nothing. You're injured because of me, so I'll fix it” Vixen gave him a flat look. Garrus was about to protest when he felt her hands rest lightly on his shoulder. Then, Vixen began to shine with biotic power. Garrus' eyes widened as he watched Vixen start to pour the power into him. He felt like a cool breeze caressed his muscles, his shoulder and body relaxing. Vixen's hands moved like water of his arm, biotic waves pulsing along his limb with a soft hue. He felt like he was floating, no pain to weigh him down. It almost felt pleasurable in its own way.
“There we go” Vixen's voice broke through the pleasurable trance, snapping Garrus awake. He looked at his shoulder and was amazed. She had relocated his shoulder and all without him feeling any pain. Even moving his shoulder he felt no pain and the swelling that usually came with such an injury was no where in sight.
“How?” Garrus asked, his voice slightly shaky from the shock of not feeling any pain in his shoulder, combined with the pleasurable feeling he had experienced seconds ago.
“Biotic trick” Vixen smiled as she began to strap his shoulder armour back on. Garrus watched but he noted how sluggish her movements were, sweat beaded her brow and even her eyes looked a bit vacant.
“Vix, you okay?”
“Yeah. Don't worry about me.” Vixen smiled before she stood up. Garrus stood up, keeping his eyes on Vixen as she dusted herself off. She was defiantly moving slower than normal. Vixen Turned towards him, flashing him a smile as she did. Garrus' mandibles couldn't help but flutter in response.
“Come on. We'd better get back or else Alenko will get his panties in a twist” Vixen spoke as she jabbed her thumb in the general direction. Garrus nodded, falling in behind Vixen as they started making their way through the tower.
Vixen's biotics flew towards the Geth as it tried to take cover behind some fallen rubble. But the blue energy ensnared the synthetic before it could, Vixen smiled as she commanded her biotics to crash the metal body. Hearing the gurgling cries of the synthetic Vixen charged forward before she blasted the Geth in the head with her shotgun. The lifeless body fell to the ground, its white fluid spilling onto the ground.
“I think you're enjoying this” Garrus called out from further up the tunnel they were situated.
“What's not to enjoy?” Vixen grinned as she looked round. Noticing that no more Geth were in the area, she slipped her shotgun back onto the small of her back and made her way back to the team. When they got back to the colony, Alenko hadn't wasted time with explaining that the colony needed food and water, along with a form of power supply, to get the colony back on it's feet.
They made their way through the tower, killing off the Geth when they appeared. They found a pack of Verren and after Garrus had killed the alpha, Alenko stripped off the usable meat for the colonists. Vixen managed to find some power cells from a near by create that looked like it had been abandoned.
“How's that water situation coming, Alenko?” Vixen asked. Alenko pressed a few buttons on the panel in front of him. Sounds of trickling water suddenly turned in a rushing flow through the metal pipes above them.
“That should do it.” Alenko announced as he stood up. Vixen nodded and led the team out of the tunnel. Making their way through the tower's maze like layout, Vixen thought over what Fai Dan had said. Fai Dan was the sort of leader of the colony while the chaos ensued, but even Fai Dan gave Vixen a bad feeling. It was like the whole colony was in a state of perpetual tension and fear.
Vixen's nanites buzzed around her ears making Vixen stop in her tracks suddenly, Garrus nearly toppling over her again in the process. Vixen listened, her nanites picking up on a frequency signal coming from one of the adjacent corridors. Her nanites were acting weird recently. Acting on their accord, suddenly increasing senses before she knew what was going on. At first she put it down to the little machines protecting the host body in a form of self preservation, but recently she had been having second thoughts. It could have been protecting Vixen in part but it was like they were watching the battles she was having and helping her out in some ways. If that was the case, she wasn't sure how she felt about her life being a movie for the small robots.
She quickly pretended that she checked her Omni-tool before the two behind her became confused as to why she was just standing there. She was already getting looks from Garrus about the Biotic feeling she did.
“Sorry, guys. My Omni-tool picked up a weird frequency” Vixen lied.
“Mine isn't picking up anything” Alenko huffed as he glanced down at his own.
“Spectre addition, Alenko. Salarian tech and all that” Vixen shrugged.“I think we should check it out”
As she listened to the signal get stronger, she drew out her shotgun as she approached the door where it seemed the signal was coming from. She signalled for the others to do the same before she reached over to the lock mechanism. Garrus drew out his assault rifle and Alenko his pistol, flaring with his biotics softly. Vixen steadied her breath, the frequency was making her nanites buzz so much it felt her whole body was vibrating.
The door flew open. Vixen glanced round the area, a long corridor with a few pillars for cover. Other than that, there wasn't much room to move.
“Garrus, you stay here. Shoot anything we don't see.” Vixen ordered. Garrus clicked his mandible before he crouched down next to the door's edge. Vixen could tell he was happy to switch back to a sniper.
“Alenko, I want you to take cover behind the pillar on the left. I'll take the right.” Vixen spoke. Alenko nodded before they both dove for the respected pillars. It was then, as if by divine intervention, that as soon as Vixen crouched down, two turrets appeared over head flanked with the new type of Geth that liked to stick to walls as if they were jumping spiders. Garrus was the first to fire, his bullet ripping clean through the head of one of the jumping Geth. Thus the fire fight began.
Alenko activated his barrier as he took aim at the turrets. Garrus tried to pin down the other jumping Geth before it could fire another shot at Vixen as she concentrated her fire on the on coming Geth units. Vixen sent out singularities to try and cluster the Geth together before she take out a couple with a few shotgun rounds to the headlights. Then, as Vixen's shotgun began to overheat, a roar ripped through the sound of gunfire and before Vixen could figure out what it was, two Krogan burst through the cluster of Geth and came charging towards Vixen and her team. Vixen growled, divine beings hated her today. Alenko fired his pistol at the charging beasts but the bullets were merely bouncing off their armour.
“Garrus! Cover me and keep him safe!” Vixen ordered as she wrapped her biotics round Alenko and throwing him out of the door they came through.
“Vix, You can't take two on your own!” Garrus cried back.
“Watch me” Vixen smiled before she charged at the Krogan. Her biotics humming through her body as she crashed into the hulking behemoth. The Krogan and Vixen locked hands, each trying to over power the other. She could hear Garrus and Alenko unloading bullets onto the other Krogan, but it was only seeming to annoy the Krogan more. Vixen looked over the Krogan as the grappled each other, she noticed something was wrong with him. He seemed more...feral than normal Krogan.
“Vakarian!” Alenko's voice burst out. Vixen glanced over and what she saw stunned her. Garrus grappled the other Krogan, who she hadn't seen coming up to attack her from the side.
“Watch me? You really think I'm going to sit back and watch while my commanding officer gets her ass handed to her on a sliver platter!” Garrus shouted at her. Vixen smiled, a chuckled escaping her lips. Focusing back on the Krogan that continued to struggle with her, Vixen's biotics raged and flowed across her body like a sudden burst of fire. The Krogan flinched for a moment, taken aback by the sudden show of biotic power, but a moment was all Vixen needed as she used the Krogan's strength and over all body weight to help her propel herself upwards. Vixen's knee connected hard with the Krogan's chin making the Krogan's head snap up. Using the momentum, Vixen then flip her legs round until she sat on top of the Krogan's large hump and wrapped her legs round his thick neck. Her feet dug into his windpipe, the Krogan grabbing Vixen's legs as he struggled to breathe. Vixen grit her teeth as she tightened her grip round his neck, her biotics helping her as much as they could, her muscles burning and straining and possibly tearing. All the while her nanites were flowing through her body, trying to help their host as much as they could.
The Krogan's body went limp, his arms falling to his sides as his last struggling breath escaped his lips. As the hulking mass began to slowly fall to the ground, Vixen hopped off before her legs became trapped under the body. A low growl made Vixen look over to see Garrus still wrestling against the other Krogan. Vixen whipped out her pistol before she aimed at the Krogan's head.
“Garrus, get down!” Vixen ordered. Garrus kneed the Krogan in the stomach before diving out of the way. As the Krogan slowly recovered from the sudden winding, his head exploded as Vixen fired her pistol.
As the room calmed after the intense battle, Alenko peeled his form away from the wall and gazed round. Vixen walked over to the body of the strangled Krogan, there was defiantly something different about this Krogan, if not both of them.
“That was the first time I've seen a Krogan dying by a strangle hold” Garrus huffed, his wrestling match with the other Krogan taking its toll. Vixen brought her eyes away from the dead body and smiled.
“You see something new everyday on this job” Vixen spoke softly. Garrus let out a small chirp as he smiled. As Alenko started looking over the bodies of the Krogan and Geth for items they could use, Vixen walked down the corridor on the opposite side of the room. The frequency became more like a dull hum, though it did fluctuate with intense bursts every so often. Alenko and Garrus followed behind, their weapons at the ready for any more enemies that could appear. The Geth that could jump from wall to wall had everybody on edge.
They all entered a small side room, the only occupant being a table with food supplements supposedly for the Krogans that had attacked them. Like the rest of the area of Feros, the room was run down. Cracks were forming like spider webs in the walls while rubble from crumbling pillars littered the ground. Dust hung tick in the air from being recently disturbed, as if the ancient place started to awaken from the emergence of new life. The only thing that was out of place in the room was a large machine on the other side of the room. It's shining metal and blinking lights certainly made it stand out in the dust filled room.
“Well, that certainly looks Geth made” Garrus spoke up, holstering his weapon away. Vixen walked over to the contraption, her nanites were buzzing with a frenzy.
“What do you think it is? A bomb?” Alenko asked. Bringing out his Omni-tool he started to scan the structure.
“Not a bomb...too complicated.” Vixen mused.
“Isn't everything about the Geth complicated?” Garrus spoke up. Vixen smirked as a small chuckled escaped her lips.
“Not really. The Geth, like Salarians, make everything simple. Look at the weapons, simple design and easy to use.” Vixen explained. Garrus hummed but his eyes were still on the tower.
“But the Geth themselves are complicated.” Alenko said as he put away his Omni-tool. Obviously the scan hadn't shown him anything.
“The Quarians created the Geth bodies, not the Geth. The Geth still use the concept because it still works. But – saying that – the Geth do make upgrades. For example, the jumping Geth we've encountered, their usual bodies wouldn't allow that sort of movement.” Vixen explained further. Alenko scrunched his face in thought as he looked back at the machine in front of them. Vixen did the same, looking over the structure. The pulse of the fluctuations vibrated through her body, That's when it clicked.
“It's a transmitter”
“Transmitter? What for?” Alenko asked, bring up his Omni-tool again and checking the scan.
“A data transmitter. Geth are just information at the core. They're being transported – in a sense – to the data core” Vixen smirked. The Geth were clever, they hadn't really been destroyed. Only their bodies now lay in steaming pile of scrap, but their true selves had escaped. That was the frequency her nanites had picked up and were telling her about. But while Vixen admired the Geth technique, the dark part of her knew that now, he was aware that she was on Feros. If he didn't know before, he did now.
“Sneaky bastards” Garrus groaned. Vixen clicked to agree, sneaky but impressive. Then a small glint caught her eye and Vixen suddenly had to contain her anger. Taking a calming but albeit short breath, she folded her arms.
“You two go stand outside, see if this thing has sent for backup” Vixen ordered. Garrus nodded, but slowly walked out of the room. Vixen wasn't surprised that he would have picked up on the heightened anger from her.
“What about you?” Alenko asked. Vixen glanced at him, the look of concern of his face and puppy dog eyes made Vixen grit her teeth slightly.
“I'm going to contact Tali and see if me and her can get any information from this thing. If we can't, then I'll just blow it up. It'll save the colony any more hassle from the Geth and it'll give the Geth a blind spot at least” Vixen told him. Alenko nodded slowly before picking himself up and walked out of the room. Vixen looked back and noticed that Garrus was stood at the door, his eyes boring into her with a hard stare. Vixen smiled, resisting the urge to blush, nodding her head to the side in a silent order to get going. Garrus' mandibles gave a quick flick before he walked off.
“Over Protective Turian...That must be my type or something” Vixen muttered to herself.
Vixen looked over the transmitter. The Geth certainly knew how to create something that was multifunctional as she spotted the small camera lens just peeking out of the wires that tried to hide it. Vixen knew he would have been watching. Vixen resisted the urge to shout out her anger, her annoyance, her fury. Tell him how she felt betrayed by him. She wanted to yell at him, ask him why but she knew just yelling at a camera lens would only give her a small release, not the answers she desired. Vixen grit her teeth as she glared at the camera lens.
“I'll find you, you bastard. I'll find you and rip your throat out or slap you senseless...I can promise you that” Vixen spoke softly so her team couldn't hear her, just in case they were in ear shot. Her grip tightened round her shot gun as she lifted it.
BANG. BANG. BANGBANGBANG.
The screen became nothing but a fizz of static. Saren sat in the dark room once again as he stared at the screen. A faint smile played upon his mandibles. The sight of her blood boiling, the fury in her eyes was good to see again.
“I'll see you soon, My Fox” Saren said quietly to himself, his voice almost coming out as a purr. Maybe after she had the answers she was seeking, she would understand and join him. Help him in what he was trying to accomplish. Then he wouldn't have to leave her. Images of Vixen filtered though his mind's eye. Her smile, her laugh, her sarcasm...
Suddenly the ship gave off a load but all encompassing groan as pain shot through Saren's head. Saren doubled over in pain, gripping his head as he let out a roar.
“No! Leave those alone!” Saren roared out. The pain spreading across his head.
She is your weakness...She is unnecessary
“She is my strength! My reason for doing this! And if you want me to keep doing your demands then you leave her alone, leave my memories of her alone!” Saren slashed at the floor. The images of Vixen flickering before his eyes like the static on the screen. The pain was almost unbearable, his body shaking with pain.
...Soon you will understand...
The pain lifted and Saren took in gulps of air to calm the raging nerve endings in his brain and body. His talons scraping against the floor as he picked himself up and dropped into the chair behind him. Footsteps rapidly came through the entrance of the room and Benezia's scent filled the room.
“Saren, are you alright?” Benezia asked, his voice holding a false concern. Saren growled, hiding his face in his hand so not to show the Asari the true pain he was really feeling.
“You should be getting ready for Noveria” Saren hissed out.
“I was until I heard your roar” Benezia quipped. So she hadn't heard the ship, interesting.
“I'm fine woman. Just go get ready” Saren barked, his face still hidden behind his hand. He heard Benezia huff slightly and storm out of the room. Saren had sent out a handle of Krogan and Geth to retrieve her daughter. Hopefully when they find her, Benezia would have someone else to fuss over.
Lifting his head slightly, so that his eyes peeked out above his hand, he looked at the screen. Ordering the footage to replay, he watched the fights and conversations of Vixen's team. Smiling as he watched Vixen take down the Geth units and Krogan forces. But there was someone else he watched, someone who made his hatred rise slowly and wished he could kill for being so close to Vixen. The Turian. He would be the first one he would kill when this was finished.
Hope you like it guys! Please review.<b>