Right at the next corner.
How many of these signs can there possibly be?
Thane stumbled on, following signs and directions through unfamiliar streets in search of his goal. A hospital. It had been too long since he had actually seen a medical professional. Being dead had its drawbacks. He could feel the weight of their effects in his chest, in his strained breathing. How long can I really keep this up? He didn’t know but he pushed the thought to the back of his mind near immediately.
Ever since the defeat of the Reapers, Jack had gotten into the habit of occasionally styling her hair.
It made her feel a little bit ridiculous, standing in the old office building where she stayed, looking this way and that into a broken piece of mirror in the dust of a near-ruined London.
The thing was, Jack had always needed to maintain a semblance of active control over her appearance, however trivial. Cerberus had marred her body with cuts and bruises, scars from unsolicited treatments, chemical burns from experiments gone awry. With every inch of skin she inked, the former convict reclaimed a part of herself, transformed it into something of her own design. And now, with few clean needles and precious little skin left to transform, she directed this energy into something a little less permanent.
Today, her dark brown hair was spiked into a sizable mohawk, earning her more than a few stares from the hospital staff. (One of the Asari physicians had looked sorely tempted to poke it before a succinct snarl sent her hurriedly on her way.)
Jack sat alone in the hallway, her mood dour. Prangley was in his room, catching up with his only surviving parent. The former convict figured she’d give them some privacy. Besides, she’d hate to have to sit through all that family crap.
She had intended to talk to the kids early this morning about her plans to leave, but couldn’t quite manage to start the conversation. Somewhere between escaping Pragia on a Cerberus vessel and nagging Prangley about his barriers, friendship had become more important to her than vengeance.
Which… kind of sucked.
There had been a certain freedom in having nothing to lose. A sense of exhilaration in simply not caring about the ways in which her decisions affected other peoples’ lives. To be any other way was a vulnerability. A loss of control.
Yet here she was, fucking involved, for better or for worse.
There was a mild commotion down the hallway, which caused the powerful biotic to turn her head - and blink in surprise. During her time on the Normandy, she hadn’t been particularly close to anyone. But here was a person she would recognize anywhere.
Jack watched, unnoticed, as the renowned assassin breathed deeply into his oxygen mask. She had heard from Shepard that Thane still lived, but the drell’s condition had clearly worsened.
There had always been an inexplicable understanding between them, even if they never talked much.
She vividly remembered storming into the Life Support chambers once, huddling wordlessly into a corner of the room without so much as a glance at its regular occupant. It had been soon after Pragia. She had hoped to lay her ghosts to rest. And yet, she’d stalked the bowels of the ship that night, driven to insomnia by the same unshakable rage. As to why exactly she found herself silently sharing Thane’s space… her guess was as good as any. Perhaps she saw a kindred spirit in him. Both of them were trapped in the past. And as much as they tried, neither was truly in control.
It wasn’t until he finished speaking into his omnitool that Jack decided to approach. The assassin stared at his hands, the plates of his brow furrowing subtly the only sign that he was aware of her presence. The biotic frowned, leather-clad feet coming to a stop about a meter in front of where he sat.
“Hey,” she finally greeted, her voice the essence of deadpan levity. “You look good for someone who died a few months back.”