Windhoek was a stark change from the drizzly grey of London. White and puffy clouds dotted a calming light blue sky. The sun shone down from the heavens mildly, setting the temperature at a warm, yet comfortable degree. Sand covered the land like an ocean, washing over the city that had once stood so tall and proud. Despite the obvious devastation, it was somewhat tranquil out there in the middle of nowhere. Which is why it came as a surprise to Kysar that most of the humans still complained.
London had been reduced to rubble and yet, the humans talked about the weather. They complained about the rain, the cold, the wind; everything. Finally, here they were in the climate they longed for but now it was too hot, too sandy, too calm. The Turian couldn’t help but wonder how this civilisation had achieved space flight, let alone led the fight against the greatest enemy the galaxy had ever known. What would they say to the sun on Palaven? It would literally strip the skin from their soft little bodies. Or what if they encountered the horrors that lurked beneath the sands of Tuchanka? Would they still say it’s too hot out?
Sand- whipped up from the Kodiak’s thrusters- lashed Kysar across the face, bringing him out of his daze. Their client had appeared along with another human, taking a long winded approach in explaining what their mission was. The Turians mandibles twitched as his eyes rolled. Invectus had commanded him to stay “one step behind '' Katya and Solveig at all times, feeding back any information regarding their connections to the Alliance. Perhaps espionage wasn’t the General's strong suit as Kysar knew he wouldn’t get far if he was there every time the pair turned around. He had read enough of their files to know they’d easily pick up on such a thing. Besides, Kysar was free, out in the open and away from the stuffy corridors of the Hierarchy’s headquarters. The mission wouldn’t suffer if the Turian stretched his legs. Invectus could shove it.
“Spirits, she’s a big one.” Kysar thought, spotting a heavy set Asari as he brought his rucksack over his shoulder. Maneuvering around her and away from the landing zone, he carried on. “With a physique like that, Hotel Azure won’t be offering her a contract anytime soon.” Hefting a large box of supplies, the Asari pivoted around on her heels, swinging the crate as if it were nothing. “On second thought, maybe she’d get one as a baggage handler.”
Continuing on round the building, Kysar came across the peculiar sight of an oversized Krogan attempting to fit into a closet. “What in the fuck.” He mused, laughing loud enough for the giant turtle to hear. “Is there something in the water here?” Giggling some more to himself he pressed on as a wave of heat began to weigh down upon him. Reappearing from behind a cloud, the sun beat down on his armour, grinding the metal as it expanded ever so slightly. Maybe it was hotter than he initially thought. A sense of weariness fell over the Turian, his head dipping to the side as he slowly began to nod. The Krogan had the right idea, any rest time he could get before the mission started would make for one happy fighter.
Heading inside the pub, the place had been remade into a makeshift ward. Patients were strewn all over the shop, laid down in cots. Nurses, doctors and medics rushed around as former combatants cried out in pain. Kysar paid them no mind, weaving his way through, looking for an open spot to lie down. Everyone was busy, too busy to help a woman as she screamed for help from a medic. Her partner was in a bad way, bleeding profusely from a reopened wound. Avoiding eye contact, the Turian shimmied past the couple, making his way to a vantage point over in the corner as his omni tool pinged.
Dumping his rucksack on the floor, he brought up his arm. The bright orange flashed to life with the name Sarah appearing across the hologram. Grimacing, his brow furrowed. Why did she insist on keeping in contact? Surely there were more pressing matters, no? Kysar’s finger hovered over the acceptance button, his jaw grinding back and forth. Plus he was busy himself on a mission, about to risk his life. That meant something, right? Screaming continued in the background, as the Turian umm’ed and ahh’ed. Finally, with a shake of the head and an annoyed growl, he accepted the communication.
“Hi… um… Kysar.” Her voice was soft, barely audible over the madhouse in front of the Turian. Sarah’s chest barreled as she took a deep breath in. Her mouth opened but only a croak escaped. With a large exhale, her shoulders dropped and she smiled weakly, brushing back a strand of hair that had come loose from her ponytail. The bags under her eyes stood out, even in the vid.
“Mum? Is that Kysar?” A little voice from somewhere off camera questioned, followed by another. “Aw yeah mum I wanna say hi too! Please!”
The Turian watched as a facade dropped over the woman's face, smiling from ear to ear as she turned. “Of course you can, my darlings, come here.” The kids scrambled on screen. Keiran, with his curly chestnut hair, reached out for the camera. Kysar let out a small snort as Sarah told the boy off. “Sorry,” she offered, “I should say that we hope you’re ok and safe.” Squeezing the two as they sat in her lap, the kids gave their cheesiest grin.
“And we hope you come back soon!” Added little Michelle, the freckles on her nose scrunching together as she giggled. Sarah looked away, her mask dropping for just a moment. “Yeah… well… just be safe.”
Kysar felt his mandibles twitch as the vid ended, threatening to release a smile. Somewhere deep inside he could feel it, a yearning from a seed that his mother had placed all those years ago. There was such a long road ahead of them. Hell, they were calling from some shoddy tent inside of a cramped refugee camp just outside of London. There were a million and one other things they should’ve been doing but instead there they were, calling him, wishing he was doing well. Kysar felt his head drift to the side as his eyes glazed over. He could send her a message, telling her he’d be back. His assignment to find and end the smuggling ring was in Europe, maybe if he got through this mission he could…
Shrieking from across the way cut the Turians' thought short. The medic had arrived too late and the womans’ partner was already gone. Kysar watched as she wailed, softly hitting the medic who just stood his ground, before she fell into a heap next to the dead man on the cot. “No, it’s better this way.” He reasoned, flicking his omni tool closed. “She’s better off this way.”
Kysar picked his rucksack up off the floor, making his way over to what was now a few humans taking the body away. The group shuffled past leaving a nurse to clean up the bloody rags left behind. Popping his bag down next to the cot, the woman looked up, offering a sympathetic smile.
“I’m sorry sir, if you want, you can follow your friend. They’ll be giving him a proper burial outside.”
The Turians head jerked back, confusion covering his face. “Huh?” He chuckled. “Oh no, I’m here for the bed.”
The warm smile of the woman switched instantaneously as her eyebrow cocked. “I’m sorry? What do you mean?”
Kysar sat down on the edge of the bed, groaning out a satisfied ‘ahh’. Fluffing up the pillow, he continued. “Well he’s not going to need it anymore is he? Beds being for the living and all that.” The woman shook her head furiously. Her features crunched in disgust as she charged away. Kysar let out a small sinister chuckle before laying down. At least he entertained himself.