"Greetings, Ikora! I have a topic I would like to discuss with you."

Ikora stood in the H.E.L.M., watching the flash of the AI's processor. Failsafe's voice was cheery.

"Of course. What do you need?"

"It is with regard to the Cayde unit, and your encounter with him inside the Pale Heart."

"I see," Ikora said stiffly. "You don't have to engage your politeness filter, Failsafe."

"I realize that this is a sensitive topic and did not wish to make you uncomfortable. However, I see that my politeness filter may be having the opposite effect. Disengaging now."

Ikora clasped her hands behind her back and waited for Failsafe to speak in the few moments of silence that followed.

"So… what's he like? The same?"

"Yes," Ikora said warmly. "Exactly as I remembered."

"Must have been nice to see him again."

Ikora heard the disappointment in the AI's voice.

"It was hard at first. Seeing him against brought back how I felt when we lost him." Ikora chose her next words carefully. "Reports from the time of Cayde's death describe your reaction as…" she paused, unsure.

Failsafe's interface flashed. Ikora could almost feel the thread of shame woven into the silence. When the AI spoke again, it was at a whisper.

"I didn't know how to respond. I have trouble processing my emotions," Failsafe admitted. "You can probably tell."

Ikora nodded.

"We all have trouble with that sometimes. We're not our best selves when we're grieving."

The Warlock heard a series of small whirrs and clicks. Somewhere, an internal fan began to hiss. It grew louder and louder as the AI spoke.

"I think I lost my 'best self' when I lost my crew."

If Failsafe had been a human, or even a frame, Ikora would have reached out and patted her on the shoulder. Instead, all she could do was speak gently.

"I don't think that's true."

The AI sighed. Ikora knew the sound was just for ease of communication, but she appreciated it, nonetheless.

"Cayde unit was…" Failsafe began, then trailed off. Ikora waited patiently.

"He was the first person to find me after my crew died," she continued. "He introduced me to all of you. He made me feel useful again. When he died, I… sort of freaked out. It felt like I had lost all of you. And then, you know, I kinda did."

Now Ikora herself felt that thread of shame.

"I'm sorry, Failsafe. We're here now."

"Yeah," Failsafe said warmly. "That makes me feel a little better."