The fire from the Normandy’s explosion followed Kaidan’s pod well after they’d been able to reach a safe distance from the eruption.
All the while, Kaidan’s fingers were crossed and he kept his head looking back out the window; watching, scouting, waiting. For a sign out there that she had made it.
His palms were sweaty and he had felt like he could not breathe as he watched with wide eyes for that last pod to exit; right before the Normandy combusted completely. Sending pieces of Shepard’s precious ship everywhere as the single pod like a small light of shining hope hurtled towards Kaidan’s and the rest.
Finally he was able to get a breath out as orange, red and yellow flames licked up the rest of the Normandy lighting up the back drop for the pod.
She had made it. Of course she had, she was Shepard after all. Now all he could do, was sit and wait. Wait for the landing, and the moment when he could run straight for her pod and crush her in his arms. To reassure his conscious mind that the one thing that truly mattered to him; was still here.
Impatient, Kaidan wrestled with his hands in the shuttle and paid little attention to those that were watching him. They all knew how he felt about Shepard anyways; there was no need to answer any questions they had.
The pod touched down then, and Kaidan was the first to get out. He ran to a spot clear of pods and looked for the last pod, straining his eyes to see how long he had to wait for it. Kaidan’s stomach was cramping with thoughts of calamity.
Sounds of sirens for c-sec and medical care could be heard in the distance from where he stood, and Kaidan was tapped on the shoulder a few times to be asked if he needed any. Fed up he refused them all with some bitterness in his voice, all he needed to feel better right now was his Shepard.
It did not take long after that thought had crossed his mind, for the last evac pod to come hurtling into the ground. Gliding across the surface of the planet before coming to a stop some odd miles away from where Kaidan stood.
Not taking any time, Kaidan ran for the evac pod at once. His heart pounding just as hard as his feet hit the planet’s earth. Pieces of rubble, tiny rock and other unknown plants were pulled from where they rested as he went.
His eyes never left the evac pod as he ran, waiting for a door to pop open and for Shepard to touch ground. For Shepard to look around at her surroundings, before realising he was there too, and letting him bring her into his arms. Letting him crush her in the biggest hug he had always withheld from her.
This vision never happened.
Instead as Kaidan’s boot came to a stop in front of which seemed like this barrier before the pod, the door opened and only one person came out.
Just one, not two. One.
Feeling his head grow heavy with upheaval then, Kaidan closed his eyes and shook his head. His hands balled up into fists and this sick feeling wrenching though out his body hit him like a ton of bricks as Joker stepped towards him. Belief in everything and anything of such things called miracles, no longer existing in his mind. He felt trapped in this enslavement of lack of air, like a slave working in the mines in olden days.
“Kaidan I…” Joker tried to get out.
“Where is she Joker? Where is she?! She’s still in there right, just hiding…” Kaidan began, looking up at Joker with the pain clearly stricken through the glaze over his eyes.
“I…I’m sorry.” Was all Joker could say in reply. Kaidan lost it then, running forward and picking Joker up by the collar and pushing him up against the shuttle. Forgetting all about Joker’s brittle disease.
“Why isn’t she with you? Why did you have to try so damn hard to save the Normandy you idiot! What about her? What about…Shepard?” Kaidan’s voice choked on her name. “Didn’t you care for her as well? What about Shepard, you ass!” Kaidan sunk his head down then, and let Joker go; his fingers were nimble and weak as they shook with the realization that she was not there, on the pod. That she was in fact, not safe at all.
Joker fell to the ground, shocked by the anger and grief that rattled throughout Kaidan. And all he could do; was stare. Just as he had, after the spaced Shepard, who struggled for moments with her breaking suit. Watching as the air tube disconnected from her suit and she fought to breathe. Flaying around and panic written in every movement she made. Joker truly felt; atrocious.
Kaidan broke down to the ground himself then, on his knees and brought back a fist, filling it with biotic charge as he punched it into the ground over and over again. Plundering it with all this anguish he felt. Words of things he should have said; floating around in his head. Taunting him, haunting him, teasing him; for never doing anything about his love for her other than soft words and that one night before Ilos.
Why had he wasted so much time? Always taking for granted, that she would always be there. Hell, she had made it through everything. Why did this, have to take her away from him? Why had he never told Shepard how he truly felt about her, why could the words; I love you Shepard. Never escape from his mouth?
Tears bunched up at his eyes as his hand inside his glove started to bleed at the knuckles and the ground in which he’d punched countless times sizzled from the biotics, leaving a hole there like there was now in Kaidan’s heart.
She wasn’t supposed to die…she was supposed to live, to go on to save the galaxy from the reapers and spend many more nights in his arms, safe and sound. In their own little paradise.
Whose cruel idea of fun was this? What fun was there in killing Shepard?
The tears about to over flood his eyes, Kaidan stopped punching the ground with his biotic charge and looked up into the sky charred with browns, oranges and grays to yell at those who had took his Shepard from him.
His voice carried out through the surface of the planet, letting everyone within five miles hear the torment inside his heart as he let it all out.
“You fucking bastards!” Was all anyone could hear, even long after he had sent a last biotic pound to the ground and pressed his head against the cool earth. Spit from his gaping mouth flying out to greet the hard soil. Breathing hard and scrunching his eyes closed tight.
Trying to keep those images of her in his head, trying to not let them escape from his memory. But he was just grasping at empty space. For Shepard could not remain in his head forever, if there was no longer any vision of her to see.
He’d lost everything, his ship, his love…his Shepard. All at once. The torture in this could not be understood by anyone.
His breath ragged and his fists laced with sweat and blood, Kaidan relaxed his mind and caught the last image he had seen of her smiling.
I love you Shepard. I want you to know that. I’m…I’m sorry I could never say it. But I will now, even though it’s… so late…I love you, I love you Shepard.
Beautiful piece written for this picture by-
Line art: [link]
This piece was literally the bane of my existence. I've never done a full background before, so please, don't mind the face that it looks like poop. The whole piece (Sad to admit this) took me well over 16 hours from start to finish. I coloured his armor, then got angry at it, and started over again haha. I'm far too critical. Oh Well. I really hope you guys enjoy it. I learned a lot about highlights and backgrounds from this piece. Enjoy~