The Justicar (Faith/Samara)
Right, I actually went and checked to be sure this time… Buffy the Vampire Slayer
, Angel: the Series
, and all associated characters belong to Fran and Kaz Kuzui. BioWare is the owner of the Mass Effect
trilogy, along with the mobile games, books, comics, and assorted other off-shoot products, and all related characters and concepts. Not mine, don't sue, and so forth and so on.Summary:
Faith never dreamed she'd someday end up the responsible and logical one… and then she got dragged along on Samara's quest to put an end to her deadly daughter's reign of terror.Joe's Note:
This one is a sequel of sorts to Perfection
… or perhaps not 'of sorts'. It's a sequel. I always looked at the 'pick one' aspect of Samara's loyalty mission as nothing more than a necessity of game mechanics and a method of defining whether you were 'good' or 'evil' within the game. There's a quite obvious third path available… and I'm pretty sure Commander Lehane would take it.
"You must go in alone. Morinth will be watching. Like any predator, she is cautious. You must peak her interest enough that she will approach you. When you are face-to-face, subtly encourage her to invite you to her apartment. I'll follow discreetly. And when you are alone, I'll spring the trap. Know this: until I get there, you are in great peril. She will be planning to inflict horrors on you. If you are not careful, you will want her to."
Arms crossed over her chest, Faith looked her asari companion up and down before smirking. "If she looks even half as good as you, Samara, it won't take much for her to convince me." The corner of Samara's mouth quirked up for the briefest of moments and then the justicar regained control of herself, returning to her blank expression as she stared at Faith. "Fine, fine, I'll be serious. If you ask me, though, trying to be just seduced enough to get her alone without letting things get too far? That's gonna be walking a really fine line. You sure I can't just walk in there, find her, and pop off a round with the Cain? I'm pretty sure even you'd die if you took a nuke to the face."
Samara appeared to be contemplating the possibility for a moment before shaking her head. "While I am sometimes required to kill while fulfilling my duties as a justicar, I do not condone taking lives needlessly. Especially innocent lives… or what passes for innocents on Omega. Besides, I have seen the way you interact with Operative Lawson and several other members of the crew. I believe you have the skills necessary to achieve success. And when you have, I will be near and I will come for you, Lehane. Trust me as I trust and honor you."
"Right." Faith turned and leaned against the wall beside Samara as her mind raced. She still had questions about Ardat-Yakshi in general and this Morinth chick in particular, but they weren't directly relevant to her current mission and so she could ask them later. Assuming there was a later. She snorted. Oh, there'd definitely be a later. After everything she'd been through in both her first life and this one, she'd be damned if she let her permanent death come at the hands of a blue space skank. Just as she pushed off the wall, though, something occurred to her. "Samara? Why are we killing Morinth?" The asari opened her mouth and Faith held up a hand to forestall her. "No no, I mean, I know the big picture. I guess I just need to know… why are we killing her now? We're about to face a galactic-level Big Bad. The end of all life as we know it. We both know she's powerful; if she wasn't, you'd have offed her by now. Why not offer her a bunk on the Normandy
Cold blue eyes stared back at Faith and then Samara blinked slowly before tilting her head to one side. "…I don't understand."
After taking a few seconds to turn an idle thought into a full-fledged plan, Faith began to talk rapidly as her idea spilled from her lips. "We could use your plan, or at least everything but the ending. I go into the club, find her, and let her seduce me. We go back to her apartment, you follow us and bust in, the two of you fight for a bit, and then I use my powers to break it up. That's when I go all Kyle Reese on her…" One blue brow arched at that and Faith paused before smiling sheepishly and scratching at the back of her head. "…right, you've probably never seen Terminator. There's this famous line… 'come with me if you want to live'. I'll see if Kasumi can find us a copy of the original movie to watch; the line basically has to do with character getting to pick between either certain death or the unknown."
"And that's what I'm going to hit Morinth with. She'll get two choices: she can serve under me and you won't be allowed to kill her as long as she behaves herself, or I release the two of you right there and the strongest survives. Assuming she's smart enough to give me the right answer? When we finally figure out how to survive a trip through the Omega 4 Relay, we put her on point when we go after the Collectors. If she doesn't make it back? One less Ardat-Yakshi to worry about. If she survives?" Faith shrugged. "You kill her on the way home. Bullet to the head, biotics, stuff her into an airlock and cycle it, whatever floats your boat. Either way, she ends up dead and there's a much better chance of you - and the rest of us - not getting killed because we have a very powerful biotic meat shield to hide behind."
Samara's eyes stared off at a point somewhere over Faith's right shoulder as she thought. "It is an… intriguing… proposition to be sure. As long as Morinth meets her end, my duty is accomplished. I would not be averse to her end serving a greater good. However, your plan hinges on you being able to convince Morinth that it is in her best interests to join your crew. Are you certain you can do so? And how would you guarantee their safety from her until the time comes to put her to use?"
Snorting, Faith held out her hand palm up and generated a roiling sphere of red energy with her biotics. "Safety will be easy. If she thinks I can hold you off, and you can take her… what are the chances of her starting trouble on my ship? Convincing her? C'mon, do you really think that if her choices are 'serve the chick so tough she doesn't stay dead so she'll protect you' and 'fight to the death with mummy dearest', she's going to go with Door Number B?" Samara offered the faintest shrug and Faith rolled her eyes before dissipating the energy she held in the palm of her hand. "Fine, if that's not enough for her? I'll lie through my teeth, plain and simple. Maybe 'I'll put Samara off the ship as soon as we come back from our big mission and keep you here where I can protect you'. Or 'I'll put you off the ship as soon as we come back from our big mission and keep Samara here so she can't chase you anymore'. Or even 'Psst, play along for now and I'll help you kill her after the big mission so you'll finally be free'. Or some combination of those, or we end up bargaining and I make something up on the fly like I did when we snagged Jack. Just ask my ex-boyfriends, I'm a pro at telling people exactly what they want to hear."
"…I will give you the benefit of the doubt this once, Lehane. But know this: if Morinth escapes, it may take me a great many years to come as close to ending her life as I am now." Samara suddenly pushed off of the wall, hand shooting forward and grabbing Faith by the chest plate of her black and red Kestrel armor, pulling the brunette towards her until their faces were so close that Faith could feel each of the asari's breaths against her skin. "And you will not leave my side until my task has been completed, even if it means the galaxy burns to cinders around us."
Faith felt herself drawn in by the intensity of Samara's gaze, unable to look away… and then her normal, playfully irreverent side kicked back in. Leaning a bit closer, she pressed a quick kiss to the corner of the justicar's mouth. "I'm not usually a commitment kinda girl, but that… that was actually kinda hot. Tell you what: find me a tasteful silver ring with either a diamond or a gem the color of your eyes by the time the Normandy
ships out, and I'll hold you to that." Winking at the faintly blushing asari matriarch, Faith pulled away and headed for the entrance to Afterlife's VIP section.
She had an evil blue space skank to find.