Ashley was in a hurry. She had just received her orders ten minutes ago, in less than thirty minutes she would be hitting dirt planetside to take care of some Cerberus punks, but those thirty minutes were not going to waste. Her girlfriend had just gone off duty and sent her a rather demanding message.
Girlfriend. Ashley could barely believe it, and it had been going on for months already. She had always been open to new experiences in theory, but her rather sporadic romantic history had never included women until Samantha came along. But it turned out Ashley had a thing for cute British Communications Specialists. And Sam seemed to have a thing for badass space marines, especially when they were in full armor. Ashley certainly wasn’t going to complain about that.
“You know that storage closet on the port side in the shuttle bay?”
“Meet me there in ten minutes. You won’t regret it.”
“Aye, aye Specialist.”
Ashley checked the time again while she bounced impatiently on her toes and nearly cheered out loud when the elevator ground to a halt. There was barely room for her to squeeze through the doors before she bolted.
She didn’t even acknowledge Steve as she rushed by his station, intent upon her goal. In her excitement she almost walked right by the door, and had to take a few steps back in order to open the closet door, which, unlike most of the doors on the ship, was a manual sliding door. She looked over her shoulder as she slid the door open, making sure that no one was paying her any attention.
There wasn’t much space in the storage closet with all the provision boxes stacked up to the ceiling, so Ashley bumped into Sam the second she turned around after the door was closed. It was pitch black but both Ashley and Sam were adept at finding each other in the dark, and Ashley was able to find Sam’s hips straight away.
Neither of them bothered speaking, theirs was a dance they were long accustomed to. Ashley couldn’t help but feel that something was odd though. Sam usually had her hands buried in Ashley’s hair within a few seconds of first contact, not resting along her forearms gently. Also, Sam’s lips were oddly dry. She was usually very particular about her chap stick application, something that Ashley had teased her about on numerous occasions.
It wasn’t bad though. Not at all. Just odd.
Ugh, shut up brain. More making out.
“We don’t have much time,” Ashley muttered as she broke away from Sam’s lips to trail kisses along her jaw. There was still something niggling at her that this situation wasn’t quite right. Something seemed just a little off about the angle of Sam’s jawline. Ashley pushed the thoughts away, trying to focus on her current situation“I have to meet Shepard in, like, ten minutes.”
Hands fled suddenly from where they were resting on her forearms to her shoulders and she was being pushed away forcefully. “Ashley!”
Well no wonder it felt weird. I’ve never kissed an asari before. Ashley released Liara with a jerk and tried to step away from her only to trip over the corner of one of the many boxes in the storage closet. She tipped sideways and crashed against a stack of crates, jarring her shoulder and causing a loud clatter from her armor striking all the metal.
“What are you doing in here?” Liara hissed even as she reached out in the dark and managed to grab one of Ashley’s flailing arms.
“Me? What about you?”
“I asked first.” Ashley could picture the bashful look that was likely on Liara’s face, judging by her tone.
“Oh yeah, real mature T’Soni,” Ashley grumbled, only flinching a little when Liara latched onto her arm and started pulling her back to her feet. They were standing close together again, close enough that anytime they shifted some part of their bodies would be in contact.
“If you must know, I was waiting for Shepard.”
Ashley huffed, and she was close enough to Liara to feel her flinch. “Well obviously I was waiting for Sam.” No use trying to hide anything from Liara, she already knew everything that happened on the ship and had taken great joy in teasing her about the fledgling romance between her and Sam.
Before Liara had another chance to tease her about it, the door to the closet opened. Liara let out genuine squeak of surprise and reflexively stepped closer to Ashley. They were now chest to chest, which was just absolutely perfect, because how else would anyone get the wrong idea about what had just been going on?
Ashley blinked owlishly at the abrupt brightness. She could only see the outline of whoever had interrupted their bickering.
Please, God, let it be anyone but Shepard.
“Just what is going on here?”
Ashley breathed a sigh of relief. She would recognize that accent anywhere. And then she realized that at some point her hands had found their way back to Liara’s hips. She jerked them away as if burned and held her arms up like one might if they were being robbed.
“I honestly can’t think of anything you could have said that would be more incriminating.” Ashley’s eyes had adjusted enough that she could see the disappointed frown on Sam’s face.
“Well at least she wasn’t still kissing me.” Ashley winced. Great job, Ash. Open mouth insert foot.
“You kissed my girlfriend?” Sam demanded, her shoulders squaring off as she rounded on Liara.
“I most certainly did not. She kissed me!”
“Oh whatever! You kissed me back!” Ashley cried in defense, only realizing a second too late that it probably wasn’t the best thing to say. Oh look, you did it again. Way to go marine.
“You kissed her?” This time Sam looked just a little sad, her big brown eyes wide and doe like.
“I thought she was you!”
Her efforts at explaining only earned her an incredulous look and a scoff from Liara. Sam very deliberately gave Liara a once over and then gestured to herself.
“It was dark,” Ashley added. She waved her hands around as though to brush it all away. “This is all a big misunderstanding.”
Liara looked like she was trying to not roll her eyes. “Obviously. I would never purposefully kiss Ashley.”
The way Liara’s nose wrinkled in distaste was pretty offensive. “Now that’s just rude.”
Sam, pinching the bridge of her nose between two fingers, had apparently had enough of the childish bickering between them. “Ashley, just get out of there. It’s too late for anything exciting to happen but we can at least wait for the call together.”
Ashley knew as soon as she started moving that something was going to go very wrong. It was just something about the situation that almost begged for a further misunderstanding. So naturally, her foot caught on the edge of a storage container and she stumbled forward, automatically reaching out for something to steady her. She grabbed the edge of Liara’s armored coat and pulled her along so that they both toppled right into Sam, sending all three of them to the ground in an undignified heap.
Of course one of her legs ended up between Sam’s, right in the sweet spot at the apex of her thighs. And of course her right hand landed right on Liara’s ass. Of course it did.
And of course Shepard chose that exact moment to walk around the corner and see them all there in a heap on the floor, her bondmate’s left hand right on Sam’s boob. All three of them stared wide-eyed at Shepard, who was returning their gaze with her own bewildered expression.
Only the hum of the Normandy’s engines could be heard for several agonizing moments. No one moved, Ashley barely dared to breathe.
Finally, Shepard grinned. “I could be into this.”