Cortez and femShep (thane-romance) confiding in each other over their lost loves.
Never written Cortez before. Really quick short because Thane angst get’s me going after ME3 and you’ll be getting me to write chapters again and darn it that isn’t what this was for! Thank you so much poison-ninja for the prompt.
Steve was new to the Normandy and so he didn’t know everything. A lot of the small facts were completely missed because they weren’t things people talked about. They were simply what happened and if you didn’t know them you were never would. He accepted that. It happened on every ship. He knew the commander had been in something with the drell, Thane. Nobody would name what that something was, but Steve was pretty sure he knew what. He didn’t know that the Life Support was where the drell had stayed, where Shepard and Thane had fallen into their something.
So that was why he usually made his way to the Life Support room in his time off. It was usually empty and he sometimes wanted that. He felt stupid after he realized why it was always empty. But it was also warmer and he was looking for some tranquility after the turmoil of the Citadel. He made his way in, shocked to find Shepard sitting at the table, cradling the cup of steaming tea she had.
She wasn’t crying. But her expression was forlorn, lost, perhaps even a bit defeated. Steve licked his lips as he walked in. He had heard about Thane’s death and had thought- it wasn’t his place. Garrus or Joker or anybody else. Not his. She had done so much for him and he wanted to help her too. But he had just appeared on her ship and he had thought it not his place. So he had simply nodded to her when she returned- when she looked fine. Like that indestructible, infallible leader that pulled him through his mess of feelings.
But now he wondered if anybody else had stepped up. He walked forward as her head rose, eyes red and watery. No tears though. He wondered, sometimes, if she remembered how to cry. Because it might have been a very long time since she felt allowed to do so. She tried to give him a smile as he walked forward. He didn’t take the chair, piecing together the facts he knew and- that wasn’t a chair he could take- and instead leaned his hip against the table. “Cotez,” she said, voice sounding so normal that it hurt.
“Commander,” he said gently, taking her hand slowly- letting her pull away if she wanted. Because he wasn’t actually sure how to comfort her. That was perhaps why nobody stepped up. She was such a hard person to read sometimes. He wasn’t sure what he was actually doing. She glanced at their hands a moment, then he saw the slight tremor of her lip, and then she tightened her fingers around his and shut her eyes. He gave a reassuring smile she couldn’t see as she clung to his hand.