The barrage of questions he expected, really. And though he wasn’t in the mood for an argument—too tired, too hungry, too spent—he should’ve known better than to egg the man on.
Just couldn’t help it, maybe.
One thing at a time.
Easier said than done.
"They were private bids on contracts: fluff feathers, kiss shebse, discreetly wreck the competition. No one else boasted a man on the Normandy, and Alliance paperwork prevents direct access to you. I wouldn’t put you in a position to deal with potential clients directly. Not unless you requested, since you do cut an… intimidating shadow.”
"Nerfs are foam weapons made for children, co-opted for bored adults waging cubicle wars. But the two percent jab was a joke. I meant to ask sooner, but I needed to take care of this osik first.” A huff. “And Ugly agrees with mine just fine. She probably just wants a treat.”
Boss remains silent as Mereel speaks, wanting to know how his likeness was used to secure a contract. He already knew that working with the great Commander Shepard—much less on the Normandy, period—gained him a great deal of respect and, along with that, power. What he didn’t realize was that people could practically bend over backward because of that.
And he wasn’t even involved.
"Well, I must say that it would be fun to prove my worth to one of these clients, especially those who are skeptical of what they’re paying for. I can make the Alliance bend a little, I’m sure. You’d be surprised what a few requests from Shepard can do.." He pauses. "Just as long as you said you didn’t put me on the Normandy. Because that’s just wrong."
“Ugly? No wonder she doesn’t like you.” The broad hand goes over the cat’s ears as if to keep such words out, chuckling as he lets go and scratches under her chin. “She’ll get her treat in time. As will I, I have no doubt. You’re welcome to use my likeness but just notify me next time. Even a ping will suffice.”