Shepard Family Stories: Lineage
A young turian leans against the wall, eyes constantly performing a tactical sweep. His black and blue armor gives off a small sheen from the overhead lights. A green targeting visor rests on the right side of his face. He turns his head to one side, "Cassie, you almost ready?"
A voice comes from within a large mass of wires and cables. "Will you stop nagging, Gabe? This isn't as easy as it looks. I'm having trouble finding the right connection. If I pick the wrong one, I could shut off the artificial gravity….or worse, life support."
Gabriel Vakarian sighs to himself, "Hillary? What's Aya's status?"
A calm, calculating, female voice sounds in his earpiece. "Our fearless leader is about to meet with Aria. Oh…..we have a slight complication."
"Aunt Kaycee's here."
"Oh, spirits…..we are going to be in so much trouble. Cassie? Better hurry up. Aunt Kaycee's here."
A loud *thunk* sounds from the mass of cables. "….ow….."
"Everything okay in there Cassie?"
"…I'm fine….just whacked my head. Kee'lah, what is she doing here anyways?"
"Ten credits says Aya called her here."
Hillary's voice sounds in his ear once more, "It would not be logical for anyone to take that wager, Gabriel."
"You have got to learn about sarcasm Hillary."
"I have been practicing sarcasm with my father."
"You've got a ways to go then."
"Kee'lah, Gabe. Will you be quiet? I can't concentrate."
(Afterlife Club, Aria's Box)
The so-called "queen" of Omega watches the two Shepards enter her private box from the reflection in the window. "Well well, look who's come to visit. It's been a long time Commander."
"Aria. Care to explain why I'm here?"
Ayrene takes a step towards Aria, her eyes flashing in warning. "Don't…..please."
Aria's cold, merciless eyes turn to face Ayrene. "Don't presume to tell me what to do, little Aya. The only reason I haven't thrown you off my station is because of your friendship with my daughter."
She shifts her focus back to Kaycee, "Now then, where was I? Oh, yes. I'm here to give you both a warning. There are some dangerous people about, with a serious vendetta against you and those around you."
Kaycee's eyes narrow in suspicion, "I suppose you're giving me this information out of the goodness in your heart?"
"Not exactly….they've made an attempt on the life of my daughter. I will not let that stand. The way I see it….what better way to eliminate a potential threat than having the famous "problem-solver" do it for me?"
Ayrene takes another step towards Aria, "Don't you dare talk to my father like that."
"Or what? You go crying to your mother? Let's be honest Ayrene. You're like your father, neither of you have the balls to do what is necessary to get the job done."
Ayrene's eyes go flat and full of anger. "You're right about one thing Aria."
"Yeah….I'm just like my dad." She places her hand to her ear, "Gabriel? Do it."
"aaaand….got it!" Cassie emerges victorious from the pile of cables, holding a thin, blue cable in one hand. Gabriel takes it from her and snaps the cable. Blue sparks of electricity fly out of the exposed wires. "Hillary? The security system's down….start the download."
"I've already started more than 45 seconds ago, Gabriel. Please do not distract me."
"What have you done?" Aria's eyes start to glow a brilliant blue as her biotics activate.
"Your flaunted security system has just been taken off-line. My associates are hacking into your private servers getting the information we need on your attackers."
"You'll never be able to get into it without my codes."
"Oh, we have them, courtesy of Dawn."
"Ah….of course….I should have known she'd have a hand in this. I don't like the influence you've had on her Ayrene."
"Well I think she doesn't want to end up like you; a paranoid, bitter, so-called empress."
Aria stands fuming for a good twenty seconds, looking like she's about to tear the room apart. But suddenly, a smile spreads over her face. "I was wrong about you Ayrene, and I'm not usually wrong about people."
She tosses a datapad to Kaycee, "I think you'll want to see this."
Kaycee and Ayrene lean in and peer at the screen. A video starts playing of a man being tortured, his body covered in cuts and bruises. Aria's voice sounds from off-screen, "Why were you going after my daughter? Who do you work for?"
The man splutters some, blood trickling down the side of his mouth. "You…*cough*…really have no idea who you are…*cough…cough*…dealing with. We came after your daughter because we want you to suffer as we have….*cough*….before we finally end you."
"I take it that I'm not your only target?"
"No….Shepard is the key to all this. We want to make her watch her loved ones die screaming before we put a bullet in her head. That's why we're going after her family one…by….one….starting with her mother, Rear-Admiral Hannah Shepard."
The datapad drops from Kaycee's grip, it bounces off the floor as her hands begin to shake violently. No......Mom!!!