Title: Lasting Impressions - Chapter 1: Revealing Hiccups
Game: Mass Effect
Characters/Pairing: Commander Shelby Shepard (femShep) and Samantha Traynor
Chapter 1 Revealing Hiccups
The famed Commander never expected anything but the best. Shelby Shepard was a decorated war hero and survived one catastrophe after another. The scars on her body were merely badges she wore proudly as proof of her victories. Any battle she lived was another chance for her to fight, another chance for her to prove her abilities. Anyone who stood in her way would quickly find themselves with a fist planted firmly in their face. Shepard's forceful approach was notorious
a certain reporter could attest to this.
When the Normandy left Earth in a hurry, it was sheer dumb luck that Specialist Samantha Traynor was one of those aboard. She never served on a vesseland never expected to serve under the famous Commander Shepard. The moment she discovered the situation she was left in, she felt intimidated but knew she would have to pull her weight in order to be accepted. All the information she received about the woman in charge left her picturing Shelby as nothing more than a renegade without a leash. A rough and tumble Marine who will stop at nothing to get what she wanted
that was until she met the Commander.
Stumbling upon Shepard during a conversation with the smart asari aboard, she immediately noticed the striking smile planted firmly on the tall woman. Her short blonde hair was an organized mess that complimented her piercing grey eyes. The uniform was perfectly fitted on the experienced soldier, respectfully paying tribute to her experience. She never expected a woman who so boldly stood for humanities interests to be so elegantly beautiful. Within that instance, she quickly found herself falling for the veteran.
The sudden infatuation left the timid Specialist flustered every time she came into contact with Shelby. Time after time, she would catch herself nervously rambling on and revealing little tidbits. Like an apology about finding EDI's voice attractive mere moments after her introduction and a lengthy discussion about her six thousand credits toothbrush. In the pursuit of redemption, Traynor would spend hours toiling away. She wanted to provide an example of her contribution to the Normandy's team by reporting any disturbances. Yet no matter how often Shepard congratulated the Specialist on a job well done, she couldn't stop imaging herself as nothing more than a bumbling mess.
Even if she could find a way to win over the illustrious Commander Shepard, she didn't know if she would even be interested. No one aboard the Normandy knew much about Shelby's personal life. She was always reserved about going into details about her personal interests
especially when it came to relationships. As flirtatious as she was, there wasn't a single person who succeeded in seducing the sly woman so her preference remained a mystery. The only smidgen of information Traynor was able to pick up on was Shepard's behavior around fellow crewmates of the same gender.
There was a brief change in Shelby's attitude the moment she came into contact with certain individuals. She constantly complimented Ashley on the change of outfits, saying the blues suited her better than her previous pink and white armor, and how relieved she was to see her "with her hair down." She poked fun at Jack's g-rated vocabulary and about stealing her hairstyle when there were no similarities between the two. She also mentioned how one previous crew member had a specific body part that perfectly popped out and made it difficult to avoid staring at. Unfortunately, this was not enough information for the colonist-born technician to elaborate on.
As Samantha was settling into the Normandy's daily routines, she found herself becoming more and more confident around the Commander. Since her abilities were proving to be helpful, Shepard stopped by more often to chat and commemorate her contribution to the team. Every brief moment she experience with their beloved leader left a lasting impression. Their conversations provided a moment of solace, a chance to forget about the turmoil. Any distraction away from the chaos of the war was welcomed warmly by the chipper crewmate.
During their last conversation, Samantha left a subtle hint about her growing feelings. Secretly hoping Shepard would catch onto the displays of affection from her fellow Alliance soldier. Without giving so much as a nibble to bite on, Shelby completely overlooked the notion and continued on like nothing happened. Questioning her approach, she wondered if she should even attempt anything or to simply allow things to follow their course and hope for the best.
While she was lost in her thoughts, she noticed the faint image of the Commander casually enter the CIC from the War Room. She was focusing on the datapad firmly resting in her hands with a concerned look scribble across her face. The last mission paid a toll on the hero and the weight of the war was starting to show signs of defeat.
Trying her hardest to conceal the emotions from the loss of a previous crewmember and a close friend, her eyes revealed her true feelings. They changed different shades based on Shepard's emotions. When she stared at the memorial wall aboard the Normandy, Specialist Traynor notices a faint shimmer of blue hues that made her grey eyes darker. Whenever Shelby stopped by previously, the grey appeared lighter and had a slim glow of a golden tint. The dark pupils staring at the datapad confirmed Shepard's distress.
As the battle worn Commander came closer to the Galaxy Map, Samantha attempted to comfort her, "I hear you were on the ground with the Reaper. He fired up at us a few times. Joker pulled the Normandy through some insane maneuvers to stay out of the line of fire. I was terrified at first, strapped into a safety harness. I can only imagine what it was like having that thing chasing you..."
Without looking up from the orange hologram, Shelby responded, "Don't worry, Traynor. It was tough but Joker knows better than to let anything happen to my favorite communications officer."
Trying to cheer Shepard up, she smiled, "Flatter me all you like. I'm still not feeding your fish."
"I can be very persuasive," she replied, chuckling.
"Is that so?" Samantha pursued with her interest hinted in her tone.
"Yes, although," her deep grey gaze met with Samantha's, "it appears you and Diana Allers seem to be getting fairly close. I always catch you two rambling on over the intercom."
well, I can explain," she stuttered, ashamed.
"I'm listening," Shepard crossed her arms and stared at her sternly, waiting for an explanation.
"I know I really should be focusing on the task at hand. I didn't think discussing little things with Diana would be an issue. I like listening in when she does her broadcastings and discussing topics that would make an interesting report. It also doesn't help that I find her voice attractive, like I do with EDI's and yours. Here I go rambling again
this is becoming a bad habit," she anxiously rubbed her fingertips against her forehead.
Shepard shook her head, smiling, "It's okay, Traynor. I have nothing against you mingling with the crew. In fact, I encourage it."
Relieved, the Specialist sighed heavily, "I'm sorry, I must have come across like a child trying to cover up breaking their parent's vase."
I did that on purpose. I like keeping you on your toes," Shelby winked, a light twinkle of gold radiated from her grey eyes. She tenderly placed her free hand on Samantha's shoulder before striding away. The brief embrace of her touch and the mention of her interest in mingling with others vaguely confirmed what the communications officer was feeling all along.
She does like me