Anax Therion is a maintenance crewmember from Sleepwalker Team Blue-7 of the Andromeda Initiative starship Keelah Si'yah. She views her surroundings in a clinical and detached manner, always careful in calibrating her responses to a given moment, though she espouses faith in the old pantheon of her race, particularly Amonkira. She outwardly presents a nonthreatening facade to sate her inquisitive nature but she is nonetheless more than capable of dealing with physical threats through guile, brawn, and biotics.
Anax tailors her backstory depending on who she's talking to. None are completely true, although there are common elements that may have some shade of it. Her parents succumbed to Kepral's Syndrome when she was six, their last words bidding her to find a way offworld to a place with no oceans. Anax had a rough childhood on Kahje before entering the world of data-dealing and espionage.
According to the story she tells former crimelord Borbala Ferank, Anax became one of the drala'fa under the dome of Cnidaria City, stealing and begging for food and brawling with other beggars and dogs for a place to sleep. When she was 11 years old she staked out a rich arms dealer for months, learned his assets and dirty secrets, then sold him some valuable intelligence for a pittance: his wife had been philandering behind his back once a week with his business partner. The hanar Oleon witnessed the deal, and seeing her potential it offered to take her into the Compact.
Anax spent a decade in the service of the most powerful member of the Illuminated Primacy as a multilingual diplomatic agent in upper-class settings, wielding her intellect in one hand and an M-6 Carnifex in another. She was the first drell to win a hanar poetry duel during Nyahir and her name was inscribed in fire on Mount Vassla in honor.
One day Oleon sent her to Talis Fia to find blackmail material on Pinda Kem, a volus who had stolen from Oleon. Anax was successful and it ruined Kem's life, though to her knowledge his Yoqtan-afflicted favorite son survived both ordeals.
When Oleon was assassinated, Anax became a freelancer once more, eventually finding long-term employ under the Shadow Broker, the only client whose face and voice she never saw nor even heard.
According to the story she tells fashion designer with daddy issues Irit Non, Anax's father sold her to Oleon when she was a child. Oleon, a weapons smuggler wanted in 21 systems, personally performed on her the eye surgery needed to understand hanar bioluminescence while on a ship going out of the Skyllian Verge being chased by a batarian cruiser. She made Oleon rich through her service, and even received a hanar soul name of her own in return. One of the bits of wisdom she learned from Oleon was, "One misfortune may be chance; two might be divine punishment. Three is a plan."
One day Oleon sent her to Earth to assassinate a competitor, a diplomat named Laslow Marston. Anax took a year to get close to Laslow, though during that time she began to question her allegiances and abandoned the mission straight into signing up with the Andromeda Initiative. As far as she knew Oleon was still rich and possibly trained another enforcer to replace her.
According to the story she tells lovelorn Malak'Rafa vas Keelah Si'yah, Anax was involved in a forbidden love with Oleon. It was forbidden not because drell subcutaneous oils would wreak havoc on hanar immune systems, but because the soul bond was never meant to be a physical one. Oleon bought her from a cruel hanar master who nearly worked her to death proselytizing about the Enkindlers while doing little of its own. Anax and Oleon were happy for a time until they were discovered.
According to the final story she tells Borbala, Anax had been alone all her life. Other drell got chosen over her for the Compact and she had to carve her own way until she went to work for the Shadow Broker. The stories were true, but the names weren't.
Gifted at making others drop down their guard by managing their perceptions about her, Anax had been close to only one person once in her life, deeming it the only time she had truly been herself. However, the experience left her unable to fully trust anyone else.
During her time on Earth Anax took more than a passing interest on some of the things there. She developed a taste for ataulfo mangoes, heard the "folktale" regarding Schrödinger's cat, saw a bright orange koi fish on the day she heard about the tale. She always liked humans for they thought everything was impossible.
When she joined the Initiative, Anax spent her time reading personnel files instead of mingling with the others. Despite being normally aloof, she managed to have some flings in the meantime. During the pre-launch festivities, she observed the other crewmembers dance away at Aphrodite bar, wandered through Hephaestus Station, and witnessed a murder, but chose to put the latter event out of her mind as an insignificant fact 600 years removed in the past.
Anax is 1.84 meters tall, 77.1 kilos, left-handed, and 31 years old during her journey to Andromeda. She has biotic implants along her arms and she doesn't have kids. She consistently thinks of quarians as birds or bird-people during her memory-fugue states.
Mass Effect Andromeda: Annihilation
Anax is roused from cryostasis on 0200 hrs Transit Day 207,113. To save herself the hassle of post-stasis disorientation she posted a note to herself detailing who she is, her preferences and her job. She expected to be awakened once the ark has arrived in Andromeda, but readings denote otherwise.
Projecting an air of languid indifference at first, Anax snaps to full attention on learning that 10.1% of the drell contingent have apparently died aboard the ark. Her mind immediately wonders if people she knew were among them, specifically recalling Osyat Raxios, Cawdor Thawma and Prokhor Rabdo. Memories related to death filled her awareness and she's forced to clamp down on these, testily venting at K, the Keelah Si'yah's VI, if it ran a self-diagnostic to rule out faulty readings.
One hour later, Anax, Senna'Nir vas Keelah Si'yah, and Yorrik visually confirm dead drell in cryopods displaying excellent life signs. She recognizes one of the corpses as Soval Raxios, Osyat's wife. Anax initially analyzes her cause of death as poison, faulty equipment, or pathogen, deeming it too early to assume sabotage. She admired Soval, and she involuntarily recalled fond memories about the woman. Closing the corpse's open eyes, Anax implores Kalahira to help Soval on her journey to the afterlife.
By 0530 hrs the rest of Blue-7 have assembled at the Radial. Twice now Senna has bidden everyone good morning, and twice Anax insists that it's not yet morning. While Senna summarizes for the newcomers what they found, Anax steers their team leader back on track when he rambles about technical details. Borbala Ferank perks up at the suggestion of an intentional attack, but Anax is too bothered by over 400 drell deaths and insults the batarian to shut her up. She informs the group the probable causes are presently split evenly, warning against ruling out things because they seem improbable. She brings up the possibility of elcor or batarian saboteurs, earning protests from the teammates belonging to either race, though she retorts she's simply hunting for data as a servant of Amonkira.
Soon enough Blue-7 rule out every possible cause of the problem, causing Anax to snark about it and daring Irit Non to return to her 100% safe cryopod. The volus thinks it doesn't concern her anyway since only drell and hanar are dead at the moment, so Anax and Borbala both stare at her until she says sorry.
Senna divides Blue-7 into groups of two, and Anax and Borbala are to search the ship for any saboteurs. Anax always thought quarian ship interfaces shouldn't use personal pronouns given their history, so she picks up on this when Senna addresses K as a "she". The quarian deems it beside the point, giving her more instructions, and Anax wryly assures Borbala she'll be gentle since the latter isn't thrilled to be working with her. Falling into another memory, Anax recalls a quarian family aboard whose crate contains a microscope that might be useful to Yorrik.
After sending three corpses to the medbay for autopsy, Anax and Borbala head down to the cargo hold for the microscope. Getting the crate open, the batarian spouts ignorance regarding its contents, so Anax explains the quarian mindset to her. After finding the microscope, Anax comms the medbay for anything else they need. Six fluorescent dyes are required for a toxicology scan: Anax learns veridium tricupridase is colloquially known as Drell Belly Green no. 15, retrieves sources for it and four others, and lets Borbala take care of the last one.
Inspecting Borbala's "nest egg" of cryogenically frozen fish, Anax is nearly triggered by another memory, and she asks if the smuggler smuggled anything else aboard. Borbala claims she didn't, so Anax tells her to reserve a snapping eel and some sunfish for their dinner. Asked if she's going to rat Borbala out, Anax essentially claims she dealt in secrets for a living, impressing the old crimelord. She then remembers the quarian crate also has an empty enviro-suit, sending it to Yorrik upon learning it will help greatly in his research, but ensuring Borbala doesn't see her command code for the elevator in the process.
Mistrusting the batarian even as she outwardly projects amiability, Anax wonders why Borbala can be cheerful even in these times. The matriarch launches into a monologue about not fearing death, which Anax claims to be an impressive bit of bravado. She opens a weapons locker in the bridge, but Anax is hesitant to hand her partner a gun. She implores the batarian not to backstab her, so Borbala offers a deal about not pandering to their respective stereotypes. Normally Anax would laugh about weak drell lungs, but the 400 bodies drained the humor away, and she lets Borbala know she's offended. The batarian's smuggling makes her a suspect in Anax's eyes: if she had fish, she may have snuck in something else.
Borbala suggests reviewing the security footage where they are instead of going back to the security hub, though Anax is indifferent to the idea. She instead remembers the features on Soval's corpse and asks the matriarch if she has seen the dark blue sores elsewhere. The batarian segues into a rant that reveals she can paint, causing Anax to gawp at her. She can't imagine her in an artist's smock coloring lillies in a pond. As for Anax, she shares she may have seen the sores before, but didn't tell the others earlier because she still holds out hope she's mistaken.
While watching the feeds with horosk at hand, Anax inquires and learns about Borbala's ruined eye. The ambient temperature gradually becomes too hot for batarian sensibilities, but Anax is fixated on taking in the vids' details and her body welcomes the heat anyway. Eventually she recounts a story of her allegedly harsh childhood and how it ended up with her seeing Soval's sores on a volus child, implying a cross-species pathogen and placing their teammate Irit Non on the suspect list.
Meanwhile Anax notices a shadow positioned on camera blind spots, points it out to her partner, and spots three other reoccurrences. Convinced they need to do a saboteur sweep she readies her M-7 Lancer, but Yorrik announces over comms he needs them at the medbay as he has triggered lockdown procedures.
All Blue-7 members meet up at the medbay and share their discoveries. Yorrik confirms Anax's query that something resembling Yoqtan is responsible for the bodies. The analyst then explains Yoqtan's properties to the group, amidst Irit's angry denials. Anax reports about their findings in the security feeds, infering that the would-be saboteur's actions are indicative of a plan. If the culprit was one of them repeated cryostasis revivals would've left them in bad shape, again raising the possibility of asari or krogan adversaries.
In light of the recent information Anax is tasked by Senna to wear a hermetic suit, courtesy of Irit, so she can continue her investigations without contracting the disease. Before they could disperse, the analyst is the first to notice that someone else is approaching and alerts the rest of the team, and she tosses an M-3 Predator at Senna just in case. A sick batarian stumbles into their midst, recognized by Borbala as Jalosk Dal'Virra, whom Irit immediately accuses as the would-be saboteur. Anax only deems it probable, and remarks how Irit's attempts to extract justice for the drell are based on too many assumptions. However, she does invite Borbala to explain how she knew the other batarian's name.
On Yorrik's urgent persuasion, Anax creates a biotic Barrier in front of Jalosk just before he vomits, then forcibly Throws him into a nearby iso-chamber. The doctor wants her to leave for her health's sake, but she deems it necessary to conduct an interrogation and nobody among them is more qualified than her. Upon Captain Qetsi'Olam vas Keelah Si'yah's arrival, Anax finally complies but not before asking about Jalosk's work detail and associates. The sick batarian is from Sleepwalker Team Yellow-9, and two of his coworkers died from the pathogen, leading her to request Malak'Rafa vas Keelah Si'yah's revival since quarians are least likely to get sick given their suits.
At Irit's personal crate in the cargo hold Anax fits a custom environmental suit sewn from multiple volus kits and installed with filtration/detection systems. Irit's still prickly about associating the volus with the pathogen and still banks on accidental mutation, so Anax tells her their overall ship problems are presently somewhere between cosmic fluke and deliberate sabotage. Hearing Irit lay out her worldviews, Anax realizes the volus' hangups with her father, so she tells a story about herself similar to Irit's to gain her confidence. Before they could leave, however, they are surprised by multiple individuals suddenly awake and roaming the cargo hold.
Anax and Irit become stuck in the hold for over a day, holding out against cranky armed passengers forcibly revived from cryostasis. For the first time in years someone manages to sneak behind the drell: Borbala has returned to check on her smuggled fish, but found them looted by the colonists. Anax and Borbala make it out, but are forced to leave Irit behind.
Returning to the Radial, Anax and Borbala witness a volus exploding inside his suit beyond the volus zone. The drell explains to her companion how such an event could have happened, though she has no idea why they're still infected even if they should have Yoqtan antibodies. Peering into the other racial zones, Anax tears up when she sees her people acting orderly amidst the chaos, proud of their understated cleverness.
Resuming her original objective of questioning Malak, Anax finds him playing cards with other awake quarians in their designated zone. Borbala appoints herself as the "bad cop" to the drell's chagrin, since she thinks the good cop/bad cop dynamic is ineffective due to the latter's impulsiveness needlessly putting suspects on the defensive. Because Anax is inside a repurposed volus suit, she assures Malak he's talking to a drell when the latter exudes a fascinated reaction. Malak claims nothing unusual happened during their shift, though he inquires about Soval saying she can verify Malak's actions.
Comparing Yellow-9 security footage and Malak's accounting of events, Anax then suspects the quarian is hiding something, bolstered when Malak discloses his friendships to Qetsi and Soval. Anax guesses he secretly loved both of them, so in order to sound like someone who cares she tells him a tale of her alleged forbidden affair with a hanar. However, a quarian child dies in their midst.
Even though she doesn't know the child, Anax keenly feels her passing. The drell and Borbala are called by Senna, who peeked from his quarters nearby to see what the fuss is about. He wants his teammates to look for untainted VIs. Anax again suggests waking the Pathfinders to use their SAMs, but Senna would rather they didn't. She estimates there are hundreds of VIs in the ship, though she reports she has an unfinished theory implicating the hanar in their problems.
During their third pass scavenging for VIs Anax and Borbala drop by at the medbay to ask for the VI microscope and fish tank they supplied earlier. She's called out by Borbala afterward as the latter has realized she lied about her stories. Once again in the chaotic cargo hold to look for eezo that Yorrik needs to create a retrovirus against the Fortinbras Plague, Anax decides to trust the batarian regarding her issues with her suit: contact with her own skin oils would cause her to hallucinate ataulfo mangoes, undead cats and goblins just as non-drell would, and she has been wearing the suit for too long. She wants to get the eezo then straight back to her quarters in the drell zone, causing an amused Borbala to think Anax is seducing her. Feeling that they've bonded well enough for more personal details, Anax inquires about the real reasons why Borbala fell from grace, and is successful in coaxing the story out.
Evading infected delusional hanar, maddened elcor, and vomiting drell, Anax and Borbala reach the latter's cache of red sand, messily gorged upon by their own infected teammate Ysses. Anax puts a Stasis field on the hanar to deal with it, beckoning to a visibly dejected Borbala to follow after retrieving the drugs.
Anax secures Ysses in her quarters then delivers the eezo source to Yorrik. She commandeers the public address system to summon Senna and Qetsi to her quarters, intending to discuss what's to be done with it and gauge the quarians' reactions. Ysses is part of a doomsday cult and has actively spread the pathogen, so Qetsi suggests setting up a tribunal and leaves to see to the arrangements. Anax beckons Senna to follow the captain, then later they witness Qetsi and Malak confirming their complicity in both the software failures and the plague.
The analyst declares Ysses and the hanar cultists are red herrings, scapegoats that had nothing to do with their problem aside from worsening it. Soval Raxios kept turning up in Anax's investigations, so when she reviewed related memories she remembered the captain danced with Soval once and murdered a human ark worker in cold blood. Means, motive, and opportunity are present, although Anax is perplexed as to the motive, but soon the captain attempts to justify her deeds.
Anax follows Senna as he drags the captain back to the medbay. Qetsi is discovered to be immune to the plague and Yorrik has created the only dose of the cure, needing only someone to spread it around. Anax agrees to the plan, and Qetsi sacrifices herself going through the various environments of the ship.
In the aftermath, the drell helps Borbala into her cryopod, having grown fond of each other over their ordeals. She confesses something real about herself upon the matriarch's request, though leaving it possible she's again fibbing. She kisses Borbala on her dead eye then on her lips, bidding her to sleep well and to find her in Andromeda.