Silent Admiration

I can’t help what I am. Neither can I help what I feel.

Every moment that passes while I am near her, I just want to break down and tell her. Tell her how she changed my view of the whole galaxy. Of myself. Of the way I want to be… now because of her.

Does she even know? I can’t help but wonder… can she hear the frantic pounding from my heart as she draws close? Can she ever look at me that way?

When we first met, I knew there was something different about her. There was something that made her stand apart from all the other soldiers I have encountered. She carried herself with a grace and dignity that deserved the utmost respect, and when her voice first carried to my ears it was so powerful yet so serene. So difficult I find it to turn away from no matter what words cross those perfect lips. Who could ignore such a woman? Certainly not I.

We worked more often together, traveling to uncharted worlds and troubled colonies. Every moment with her, no matter the danger, was worth having her near. Being there to fight with her, protect her, I never wanted it to end… even if every turn brought more peril.

Her love and respect for life left me awestruck. How she explained that being a soldier meant she protected life, not snuffed it out… it all became so clear in my mind. That was why I took this path in life, so I could protect people. It changed as time went on and things became more difficult… but she was a shining beacon of truth for me. My battle maiden… my sovereign of justice.

I glace up and see her stepping towards me, that faint smile playing on her lips. We lock eyes for a fleeting moment, sending my pulse to a wild frenzy. I give a nod out of respect. She returns it. God, she looks so lovely in this lighting. The darkness of the room with the colored lighting makes her more ethereal and lovely then any asari. The scars on her face only make me want to learn everything she has ever been through, to comfort the pains of battle and cherish every beautiful trace of her struggles.

But I can’t. As brave as I am on the field of battle, I am afraid. Even though she is understanding and even inquisitive of those who are different I still fear rejection from her. Part of me doesn’t care about the misgivings of perusing a relationship while tracking a threat to all life in the galaxy. So what, if we fail at least I could die knowing I told her how… how she makes me feel. But this isn’t the time for such frivolous desires, not while death hovers over us waiting to seize its prey. I comfort myself and hide in that, not wanting to admit I’m a coward.

“Commander.” I finally speak up. That smile on her lips warms up even more as I acknowledge her.

“Just checking up on things. We’ll be landing at the Citadel shortly, and hoped you would come along.” She motions her hand to me as she finishes speaking.

I look back down to what I had been working on before she had entered this level of the Normandy. I pray she doesn’t see the nervousness in my eyes, how she shows up just when I start thinking of her. “Of course Commander. I’ll be prepared to join the shore party when we dock. Anything else?”

For a brief moment I see sadness in her eyes, like she expected me to say more. Maybe I just wanted to see that, because when I next blink I see the beautiful, confident Commander Shepard once more. “No, that will be all. I’ll see you topside.”

I nod respectfully, and she turns to go. That first step away from me make my heart wrench inside my ribcage. Why are you letting her go you fool?? Just say it!

“Commander?” I hold out my hand to her retreating form, as if to catch a fading dream. I hardly believe that word came out of my mouth, that my confidence indulges my desires and betrays my rationality.

“Yes?” She looks back towards me and those eyes… oh those passionate eyes… how they undo me.

My confidence soars. Perhaps… yes. Damn it, I’ll tell her. But suddenly that one sliver of doubt gnaws at the back of my brain. One small phrase in my mind that has been holding me back all this time shatters my confidence. Confidence shrinks away, while rationality kicks it quite hard trying to remind me that I’m standing there silent before her. I struggle for words, rational screaming for me to say something and not make a fool of myself. My cowardice comes up with something quickly.

“I… I just wanted to thank you. For allowing me on the Normandy and to join you on your hunt for Saren.”

Her brows crease a bit, but she still smiles while turning to face me fully again. “Of course. It’s great to have you along, Garrus.”

I try not to swallow hard, lowering my head slightly. “Thank you, Shepard.” When she’s finally out of sight, I let out a long sigh. That sliver trickles back into my mind once more, echoing in the empty Engineering deck. Why would a human ever want to be with a turian?

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