So, Mass Effect 3 comes out this week (any of my flist planning to get it?) and in honour of the occasion, I may have written 5,400 words of Shepard/Liara interracial femslash porn-without-plot. *shiftyeyes*
It may not have a plot but it does have exposition, since it started as me trying to work out the mechanics of asari biology and reproduction, then (as usual for me) committing that to narrative. Plus there's humour and sexytimes and character insight and all the other fun stuff.
So: anyone interested? :)
Title: The Lower Reaches
Fandom: Mass Effect
Characters: Commander Shepard, Alliance Navy* / Dr Liara T'soni.
Setting: After ME1
Rating: 18R (NC17)
Warnings: nothing particular comes to mind.
* (female, spacer background, paragon.)
The Lower Reaches
LIARA: 'Azure' is slang for a part of the asari body in some areas of Ilium.
LIARA: Mainly the lower reaches, near the bottom.
SHEPARD: I meant, "Where on the asari body?"
LIARA: So did I.
- from 'Lair of the Shadow Broker'
Liara bent over her and smiled, her blue-in-blue eyes sparkling. Then she leaned forward and pressed her lips against Shepard's. Gently at first, but the kiss quickly deepened, became passionate. Shepard's arms came up, tightened around the warm body on top of hers, drawing it closer against her as their tongues met and intertwined.
It was strange, in its way. Two people of entirely different species, human and asari, who evolved on planets hundreds of light-years apart, with entirely different biology and culture and history - and yet they both showed affection by kissing. Liara had her theories about that, in fact: she saw it as more evidence that the Protheans had intervened in the evolution of both their species, back in the distant past. Shepard was more sceptical; for one thing, she had an instinctive repulsion against the idea that her genes were the product of prehistoric alien meddling. For another, she didn't understand why, if you were an all-powerful, sufficiently-advanced precursor race able to mould entire species to your will... why you would use your power just to invent kissing.
Liara had giggled at that, then shrugged and said, "Why not? It's fun!" Then proceeded to demonstrate. When she came up for air again, she added in a more serious tone, "Besides, if hundreds of thousands of years of assisted evolution have resulted in you and me being together, I'm not going to complain." Shepard was not naturally sentimental - it didn't really go with the job - but even her heart had warmed at the sincerity in Liara's voice then. The result had, naturally, been more kissing. And other things.
Of course, not every apparent similarity between them was what it seemed. Shepard could feel a case in point pressing firmly against her own chest as Liara's weight came down on her. An asari's breasts looked very much like those of a human, from a distance - apart from the colour, of course. They served the same basic biological function too. Close-up the differences were more apparent: the rather disturbing lack of nipples for one thing. Instead there were merely two faint, puckered seams about two centimetres long running horizontally across Liara's boobs, barely visible. Apparently there would be a visible change, somehow, if she ever got pregnant; but Shepard wouldn't know about that.
There was a much more serious difference, though, and that wasn't visible. Stroking an asari's breasts felt, for her, not much different to caressing her shoulder or her knee. Not unpleasant in any way; rather nice and intimate, even. But not sexual. At least, no more sexual than being touched by a lover anywhere on your body might be. For Shepard, who found Liara's boobs incredibly sexy and inviting to the touch, that discovery had been a huge disappointment.
Liara, of course, had anxiously assured her that Shepard could play with her breasts as much as she wanted: she liked it that her lover liked it. But it wasn't really the same. Fortunately, there were alternatives.
Their lips parted temporarily, a little bead of saliva threading between them. Liara's eyes looked hungrily down into her own. Shepard's hand stroked gently over her cheek, then moved back to - well, on a human she would be running her fingers through her hair. On an asari, of course, it was quite different.
They were called li'tsin in Asari: the average dictionary translated that into English as 'tentacles', but Shepard disliked the implications. In Asari, the word was etymologically related to the terms for both a bird's wings and a fish's fins (or at least, the analogues to such creatures found in Thessia's biosphere). Since Liara most certainly didn't have feathers, Shepard called them "fins". Regardless of the name, the important fact was how incredibly sensitive they could be, especially on the undersides.
Shepard ran her fingertips lightly along the length of then, then back, pressing into the narrow gaps between them as they lay tightly against Liara's skull. Her lover wriggled and moaned, and her breath panted moist and warm against Shepard's own mouth.
Liara's body slid to the side, and Shephard felt her small hand coming up, caressing her breast, fingertips sliding tantalisingly around her nipple then gripping it and tweaking. Now it was her own turn to gasp then shudder. Liara's body might not respond the same way itself, but she was a fast and enthusiastic learner.
Now she was moving again, bringing her thigh up between Shepard's legs and wriggling her body around into place, and Shepard grinned in anticipation, knowing what was coming. There was a firm pressure against her hip, a hot, almost burning heat radiating from Liara's lower body, and her lover released the kiss and nestled her head into Shepard's shoulder. And then she was off.
There was pressure and friction and movement and gasps and panting and constant, constant rubbing. Liara was clinging to her tightly, arms wrapped around her body, and her hips were jerking rapidly up and down as she ground herself hard against Shepard's hip. The speed and urgency and hunger was overwhelming - and had taken Shepard completely by surprise, the first time she'd taken the supposedly shy, reserved archaeologist to bed.
But then Liara slowed her movements with a mutter of annoyance. She raised herself on her elbow and looked at Shepard reproachfully.
"You're supposed to stop me when I do that."
Shepard grinned. "Why? You're adorable when you do that."
"I'm being selfish."
"No, you're being asari."
It was something they'd discussed before, in the quiet moments when Shepard came off duty and managed to drag Liara away from her research. The asari were, of course, notorious throughout Citadel space for being willing and able to mate with just about any known sentient species - though most of them drew the line at vorcha. There were even salacious jokes circulating among humans and turians about the (alleged) asari willingness to mate even with non-sentient species. Many such stories began with an asari knocking at the door of a remote farmhouse asking the farmer if she could spend the night. Shepard had made it very clear when she took command, even before she got involved on a personal level with Liara, that no such jokes were to be made in her presence by the crew of the Normandy. By now, her crew's loyalty was such (from what she'd heard unofficially, through the grapevine), that they'd even started getting involved in bar fights when on shore leave to defend asari honour. Or at least the honour of their commander and her asari lover. Such was Shepard's contribution to inter-species cooperation.
However, the point was that asari were, by millennia-old tradition, thoroughly accustomed to having sex with people who weren't adapted, by biology or instinct, to giving their species sexual pleasure. Fortunately it didn't matter. An asari was perfectly capable of getting herself off, given nothing more than a firm, smooth body part to rub against; and she considered it entirely her own responsibility to do so. The thigh which Liara had pressed up between Shepard's legs was - for an asari - a thoughtful gesture; and if Shepard had been asari herself, she'd have happily started humping Liara's leg while her lover did the same to her.
In short, by human standards asari were rather selfish lovers. But of course they weren't human, so judging them by those standards was unfair.
The reverse was also true, of course. By asari standards humans were extremely generous and giving during sex, focussing on their partner's pleasure and doing instinctively what in asari was merely a learned response. Ever since First Contact between humanity and the Citadel races, the Asari Republics had been among the foremost proponents of assistance and alliance with the human Systems Alliance. There were of course plenty of serious, deep reasons for that, connected to politics and economics and ideology; but it amused Shepard to think that down at the core, the real reason was that asari thought humans were good in bed.
And Liara, whose demure exterior concealed a profound depth of stubbornness, had made it her personal duty to be just as generous a lover to Shepard as the human was to her - even if it meant going against her own instincts. They'd even fought about it, a little, until Liara made it clear she was doing it out of love, not pride. There wasn't really any arguing against that.
Besides, there were the obvious compensations: like now.
"Would you like me to do mouth sex on you?"
"Mouth-?" Shepard chuckled as she realised. "You mean oral sex."
"Isn't that what I said? Why are there two words in English for the same thing? It's redundant."
"Can we have the linguistic discussion later please?"
"I just think English is a silly language." Fortunately Liara's words were now slightly muffled as she kissed her way slowly down Shepard's torso, then settled in between her legs. "I mean, apparently I'm now expected to consume your feline...?"
"What--?!" Then Shepard worked it out, and snorted in laughter and threw a pillow at Liara's head. Liara giggled as she caught it, then lifted her body to tuck it beneath herself. After that there was no further conversation as her mouth was otherwise occupied, and before long Shepard herself was no longer in much of a state to make rational conversation, or intelligible noises.
Oral sex was actually more learned behaviour for the asari; it wasn't part of their natural sexual repertoire. In sex education lessons at school they'd learned lists of which species-gender combinations enjoyed it. (Shepard still boggled at the idea of asari sex education - apparently it was an entire three-year course.) Liara had confessed that as a girl she'd found the idea - not repulsive, exactly, but weird. That was before she met Shepard.
An asari had roughly the same amount of sensitive nerve endings in her genitals as a human did - Liara could have told her the exact number, no doubt - but they were spread over an area the size of an outstretched hand. The same sensitivity crammed into an area no bigger than the tip of one of her li'tsin had daunted her. Their first time in bed Liara had been terrified of hurting Shepard, or over-stimulating her... until she'd realised how much gentleness, precision and sensitivity she could bring to bear by using her tongue. The way she described it later it had been a positive epiphany: "So that's why they do it!"
Even better, Liara had discovered just how responsive her partner was to such stimulation. She's been astonished how quickly she could bring Shepard to orgasm that way... of course, that meant quickly by asari standards. (Shepard had told her that among humans, the male of the species was even faster than the female to come. Liara had thought about that, then said she was glad Shepard was female-human. Shepard had felt inappropriately gleeful at such a simple statement.)
In fact it was after her second orgasm - probably, they kind of blurred into each other - that Shepard propped herself up and looked at Liara down the length of her body. Her partner's eyes regarded her gravely, but behind the crest of her li'tsin - already starting to spread out - Shepard was amused to see Liara's firm blue buttocks rising and falling in a steady rhythm. She was humping the pillow Shepard had thrown at her - had, in fact, almost certainly been doing so all the time she'd been licking her lover. Typical asari...
"Huh? Do you want me to stop?"
"No - just move around. Lie on top of me... no, that way."
They shuffled around until they were in a 69 position, and then Liara bent her head forward and ran the tip of her tongue lightly down the length of Shephard's slit, then back up to tease the still-hard and sensitive nub at the top. Meanwhile, Shepard was taking the opportunity to take a good look at her lover's body.
To the untrained eye, a naked asari looked disconcertingly like the dolls that some human parents still bought their children. A flat featureless lower torso, with only a single tightly-closed orifice right down between their legs (that to a casual glance looked only like folds of skin) to mar the smoothness. They seemed sexless, which was odd for a species with such a libidinous reputation.
But appearances were deceiving - or would be in normal conditions. By now Liara was so aroused that the difference was obvious. The whole of her lower abdomen, from where her bellybutton would have been if she had one down to her crotch, was packed with nerve endings and blood vessels. Now it was engorged and sensitised. The blood rushing to the area made her skin flush and darken, a solid sky-blue contrasting vividly with the pastel shade of the rest of her body, and it seemed almost to glow.
Shepard lifted up her head to plant a kiss on the centre of the bright blue area, and Liara whimpered and quivered. Shepard was pretty sure she was restraining herself by sheer willpower from grinding down against her lover's face. Part of Shepard wanted her to do just that; but instead she wormed her hand into position then began rubbing with the firm, regular motion she knew drove Liara crazy.
If anything, she was too successful. Liara was losing focus on her own job as she quivered, panted and cried out, her body slick with sweat. Before long, Shepard took pity on her.
"Come on, love. Let's join."
"A-are you sure ? You haven't... it's still your turn."
"Don't be silly. And anyway, I've come twice already..." When Liara still hesitated, Shepard put the snap of command into her voice. "That's an order, soldier!"
Liara jerked up, then caught herself, grinned, and then picked up the battered, damp pillow from between Shepard's legs and threatened to hit her with it. Shepard plucked it from her hands, then pulled her around so she was lying on her chest again, eye to eye.
Liara took a deep breath, and Shepard could feel a kind of quivering, fizzing sensation begin at the back of her mind, like champagne bubbles.
"Are you sure?" The Joining was still a new enough experience for Liara that she often hesitated, unsure both of herself and of Shepard's reaction. But her lover smiled reassuringly, and reached up to caress the li'tsin that were now almost at full extension, like a crown around her head.
"I'm sure." Their eyes smiled into each other, then Liara relaxed and - somehow - pushed forward into her. With her brain.
The tingling sensation became stronger, spread over her whole body. It was like pins and needles, not painful but not exactly pleasant either; and there was a force pushing inside her head, trying to get in. Normally Shepard would have fought it with every fibre of her being; but now she was energised and open and filled with love and trust for the woman in her arms, and she didn't fight it; she welcomed it.
Then her vision seemed to blur and double, and she saw herself, brown eyes looking up into her own, superimposed over Liara's face. She felt her own body and Liara's body and there was no longer any difference between them. The tingling faded, to be replaced by a warm wind of rushing thoughts and sensations enfolding her. It seemed as if she could smell the colours of the walls and the bright bedclothes and their contrasting skin; hear the mingled scents of their sweat and soap and sex; see the patterns the panting of their breath and the rustle of intertwining bodies and the creaking bedsprings made in the air. Liara's thoughts and memories rushed through her mind; love and passion and insecurity and curiosity and sadness and determination, all in a rapid flood. She couldn't make much sense of them; it was all too confusing and quick and alien. Liara had said, earlier, that it was confusing to her too; but Shepard suspected her lover could read her a little more clearly than she managed in reverse. It didn't bother her.
There was another difference too, of course. As Liara's nervous system attuned itself to Shepard's, as her neurons realigned themselves to match, it set up feedback loops of electrical energy in her brain. Those currents passed directly through the pleasure centres of her limbic cortex: and it wasn't long before Liara's body was rigid, muscles locked, glands flooding her bloodstream with the asari equivalent of endorphins. The Joining could last anything up to ten or fifteen minutes between willing, compatible partners; and except for those very first moments, an asari experienced it as a single, continuous quarter-hour long orgasm.
Shepard, being human, was not so lucky. But through their joining, she could experience Liara's pleasure for herself; not quite as intense as the real thing, but almost.
They lay there, bodies straining together in prolonged, timeless ecstasy. Liara's li'tsin were standing straight out from her head, seeming to quiver in their rigidity. Shepard knew intellectually that meant she was using her biotic powers at their maximum extent, but she couldn't help thinking of it as a sign of sexual excitement. Of course, the two were linked. Dr Liara T'soni, mild-mannered archaeologist, could tear a full-grown krogan warrior in half with her biotics if she really put her mind to it; now she was doing something equally difficult, but at the opposite end of the macro-micro scale. Quite unconsciously, of course; the incredibly delicate mass effect fields that were altering the DNA structure of the gamete held inside her ovary-analogue, one gene at a time, were not under her conscious control or awareness.
Shepard had never worried about contraception in the past. Given her sexual preferences, it had never really seemed important. Besides, a subdermal contraceptive implant was standard issue to all Navy personnel. A combat starship was no place to get pregnant, with its radiation hazards and mass effect fields and constant danger of Element Zero contamination. There was an procedure for granting exemption from the implant, on medical or conscientious grounds, but young Ensign Shepard hadn't seen the point of going through the rigmarole of applying (and calling attention to herself). Her implant was checked and replaced every three years as laid down in regulations, and she hadn't had sex with a man since that last disastrous experiment in Naval Academy; and to top it all, the person she was now in a sexual relationship with wasn't even a human being. The chance of her getting pregnant, at least without a lot of serious and deliberate pre-planning and organisation, was pretty much zero.
But she could get Liara pregnant. No problem at all.
She'd been quietly terrified of the idea until Liara reassured her how unlikely it was - and then, perversely, rather upset that it wouldn't happen. Liara pointed out that asari typically lived for over a thousand years, and had one, two, maybe three children in total during all that lifespan; so the chances of conceiving were really astronomically small. A single gamete could be held in their ovary for years, sections of its DNA getting tweaked hundreds and hundreds of times, until it was finally ready to develop into a foetus. Or often it would never develop, and simply be flushed away once it was recognised as unviable, so another could take its place. In fact, an asari could choose deliberately to make that happen, using her biotics, if she didn't feel ready to conceive. Or she could hurry the process along, if she thought this was The One.
"So you have conscious control over when you get pregnant?"
"Yes, that's right. Of course it isn't perfect; mistakes and accidents can happen. People can misjudge. Sometimes there are... genetic defects that slip through. We don't like to talk about them much."
"It would ruin the asari reputation for perfection?"
"We're not perfect, Shepard. " She hesitated, then grinned. "But our baby will be."
She'd burst into laughter at Shepard's look of horror, reassuring her with the words "Theoretical baby" over and over again until the Commander calmed down.
Now, as Liara slowly relaxed atop her and the connection between them faded, Shepard mused that perhaps the idea wasn't so horrible after all. Maybe... not now, of course, but maybe later. When they'd saved the Galaxy (again), maybe...
Shepard clasped Liara firmly in her arms, then rolled over onto her side so the asari was laid out comfortably on the sheet beside her. Liara, utterly drained and limp and spent and happy, gave her a feeble smile of thanks, unable to control her muscles yet to do anything else.
While she waited for her lover to come back to her, Shepard amused herself by slowly, gently caressing and kissing Liara's body from her collarbone on downwards. She spent quite a lot of time on her breasts, of course, which drew a tolerant smile from Liara and a faint, bare whisper of a comment that sounded rather like she'd said, "Typical human...".
Then she headed further down, across her taut, flat stomach into the delta between her legs. The skin was faded almost back to pastel blue by the time she got there, but at her soft caress she could see it visibly darken again. Just a little; but just enough to promise that before long Liara might be interested in another go.
But not yet; so Shepard continued down, then swung around and lay flat on her own stomach on the bedsheet and looked up at the fork of Liara's legs. She drew her fingertip slowly over the dark fold between them, up one side and then down the other.
Liara cleared her throat, then said in a sardonic tone that showed she was recovering her strength, "Shepard, that's my asshole."
"It's your what?" Her surprise was genuine, but Liara mistook the reason.
"I - I thought you knew how our bodies worked. That's where... you know, when we go to the toilet..."
"I know what an asshole is, Liara. I'm just surprised at you using that word."
"Oh! Oh, I thought... I'm sorry. What should I have said? It's my bottom?"
"You can say 'asshole' if you like; it's just, well, a fairly crude term. I know you're not fond of bad language. What's it called in Asari?"
"Um, it's my malzarun. But you're right, we do have much ruder words for it too. I - do you really want me to tell you?"
"Not now. But if we ever meet an asari who starts using any of those words about me, though, I want you to tell me straight away."
Liara giggled. "But then you'd kill them, and I'd have their deaths on my conscience."
"Hey! I don't kill people just for getting on my nerves. The galactic population would be a lot lower if I did. The Citadel Council would be at least 25% smaller too."
That drew an even louder laugh from Liara. All this time, Shepard had been stroking her finger idly up and down the narrow slit; but then she asked, "Does it bother you? Me touching you here? I can stop if it does."
"N-no. You can touch me anywhere at all, you know that. But are you sure you want to? I mean it's... doesn't it disturb you?"
"I'm not squeamish. Come on, I'm a soldier. Its just... I am kind of curious."
"Curious? Why?" Liara sounded interested, her own scientific curiosity piqued.
"Well, I..." Shepard felt suddenly embarrassed. "I did some research on the extranet, when you and I first got together. Into, um, you know, asari, and sex, and sex with asari, and..."
"You were watching human/asari porn on the extranet?" Liara's voice was stern, and Shepard - the tough, non-squeamish soldier that she was - heard herself stammering.
"Only f-f-for research. To know h-h-ow to make you h-h-appy..."
"So what vids did you download? Maybe I was watching the same ones as you." Liara couldn't restrain herself any longer, and burst into giggles at Shepard's expression. "Hey, of course I did the exact same thing. It's natural."
"I hate you."
"No you don't. So come on. Why are you so curious about my bottom?"
"Well, it's just - most of the porn I looked at didn't call it that. And they didn't call it a, uh, malzarun either. In fact they mostly called it 'asari pussy', or other words that mean the same thing."
"Ah. That. Yes."
"But it's not, is it? And you've never asked me to touch you here. It's not a sex organ."
"No, but it can be used as one. I mean, if you were a male-human or male-turian, or a hanar of genders 2, 3 or 5, or a few other species, you'd probably be asking me if you could put your genitals inside there."
Shepard thought for a moment, then her eyes went wide. "You mean, guys who have sex with asari are doing them up the ass? Every time?"
Liara looked embarrassed, but nodded. Shepard wasn't sure whether to be disturbed or amused.
"But why isn't this more widely known? Why does nobody talk about it?"
"Other races have some very odd ideas about asari. It would take too long to correct them all, and besides it would be... awkward."
"But surely people notice that you only have one hole down here? What do they think it's for?"
"If they're wanting to have sex with us, they mostly think it's for putting their genitals inside. And there's no reason to discourage them from thinking that, since we enjoy having sex with them too. Besides, technically you could say it's a vagina as well... I mean, my uterus does open out into it. It's a birth canal. It's just... everything else as well."
"Yes it is, Shepard. I've never understood how you humans manage with three separate orifices between your legs."
"Three? Oh, yes, I suppose. Men only have two."
"Men? Oh you mean male-humans, I sometimes forget you're the same species as them. But having so many holes in your outer integument must be a risk, there are so many extra routes for infection or injury. The asari body is much better designed."
"So what's it feel like? Does it hurt, does it feel good? Do you enjoy it?"
"I think so. I've never actually... but from what I've read, people who have human-male or turian-male lovers do enjoy having sex with them. So I suppose it must feel nice. That whole region is filled with sensitive nerves, anyway."
"So, do you want to try it?"
"What? Shepard, I.. you... you don't have a penis."
"I've got fingers, though."
"But..." Shepard could see Liara's mind whirling. Getting off on your partner's body, and letting your partner get off on yours, was the asari way - until the Joining created the true emotional connection between them. What Shepard was proposing to do was completely alien to her.
So to speak.
She smiled, hesitantly at first then with more anticipation. "You'll need grease."
"Oh no, that's the wrong word again. I meant lubrication. I've..." She hesitated, blushed. "There's a present I was waiting to give you when we reached port, but perhaps this is a better time for it."
"A present? A present for me?" Shepard was touched, and also amused. "A present that involves lubrication? Exactly what kind of present...?"
Liara blushed even harder, but her voice didn't falter. "It's just what you're thinking, Shepard. I bought it from a sex shop on Ilium. It's in my locker."
She disentangled herself and got to her feet, still a little tottery, then walked aross the room. She produced a large box which she handed to Shepard, then curled herself up on the bed to watch her open it.
"So... it's a vibrator? A dildo? A... what the hell is this?"
She picked up the gleaming silver and crystal object from the scattered remains of the packaging and turned it around in her hands. Liara giggled.
"Yes. It's all of those things." She reached over and picked up a small, nondescript grey box from where Shepard, distracted, had let it fall. There were buttons on it.
"So what do I..." The artefact she was holding had curves and flares and projections that boggled her mind, but one end of it, at least, seemed pretty straightforward. Not to mention highly phallic, if a little small. "I assume this bit goes inside me?"
Liara pressed one of the buttons and the crystalline shaft suddenly started to grow and expand in Shepard's hand. She squeaked in surprise and nearly dropped it, but held on - just as Liara pressed a second button and the now much larger shaft started pulsing back and forwards. Then one of the curved projections at the other end bent round like a living thing and its tip started vibrating.
Shepard held the... thing away from her nervously and watched it in mingled amazement, apprehension and growing arousal as Liara ran through its repertoire on her remote control. Getting over her shock, she could definitely see the possibilities here.
"Do you like it?"
"It's... not like any sex toy I've ever seen before. Are you sure it's not a weapon system in disguise?"
"It's asari made. Specifically for the human-female anatomy."
"That's very generous of your people."
"I think the designers saw it a technical challenge. Your genitals are so much more complicated compared to ours."
"I can see they let the complications get to their heads a little. How long is the instruction manual for this thing?"
"23 pages. But don't worry, Shepard. You don't have to learn it - you can leave all that in my hands." She held up the remote control to illustrate her meaning. "You can just let me know which functions you like most by, you know, moaning and gasping. Or not, if you don't like them."
"Okay, I'm officially convinced. Not to mention looking forward to it. Thank you." They kissed. "But you mentioned lubricant?"
"Yes, there should be some supplied in the box... here it is." She held up a tube. "It's specially formulated, you only need a very little amount."
"So what's the plan? You use this Thing on me while I thrust my fingers up your ass? Or pussy, if that's what I should be calling it..."
"My malzarun. And you know, there's an attachment here that can go up your ass too, if you want. There!" She pressed the appropriate button. Shepard said, "Eep!" and dropped the sex toy onto the bed in alarm. Liara giggled.
"It's only fair, if you're planning on sticking things up my bottom."
"Do they make things like this for asari too?"
"Of course. Most of them strap around the hips, but there are some with a shaft that goes into the malzarun as well. Obviously I've never tried one."
"You're my first lover, Shepard. You know that."
"Oh, of course. Right." It took her a moment to understand, but then she remembered that for the asari sex toys were just that: for sex. Not masturbation. It was kind of pointless seeking solitary pleasure when the only way for your species to reach orgasm was to link telepathically to another sentient mind; so asari didn't masturbate as such. (They did sometimes rub themselves, or rub against something, in what to human eyes could seem a disturbingly sexual manner; but to them, it was more for comfort than arousal.)
"So... we could get one for you, next time we make planetfall. It seems only fair."
Liara smiled. "If you like. But... Your fingers sound nice too. More intimate."
"Organic solutions instead of high tech, huh?"
"Oh, they both have their place." And then Liara took Shepard's hand, looked her straight in the eye with a half-smile on her lips, and squeezed a tiny drop of lubricant onto the tip of her finger.
Ten minutes later, Lieutenant-Commander Pressly looked up from his station on the Normandy's bridge, grimaced, and made a note in the log that they'd have to improve the soundproofing on the captain's cabin next time they put in for repairs.