Creation began on 11-02-16
Creation ended on 11-16-16
Neon Genesis Evangelion
A/N: This just occurred to me the day before that this was another possibility within the multiverse of what I've written that uses the manga as its foundation.
Misato Katsuragi, twenty-nine years old and one of the rare few in all of Japan to possess purple hair, was having a difficult time trying to find a fourteen-year-old boy whose picture in her file of him was very outdated. She actually wanted to question it with Ritsuko, but now wasn't the time to. All she really got out of the file was how four years ago, the boy she was looking for had to be removed from the custody of his maternal aunt and uncle after an incident involving the aunt, but the details of the incident weren't disclosed, just that, afterwards, the boy was removed for his own protection. He was then placed with a relative from his father's side of the family.
"I picked a bad time to lose the boy," she told herself as she drove around the streets of Tokyo-2, looking for her priority subject. "Where is he?"
The only thing good about his predicament was that he could get around in places most couldn't without causing a scene, but Shinji found everything else about the last four years of his life to be troublesome. Everything from rules to hints and tips, but what benefitted him was that he never had to live with his mother's sister and her family ever again after what she did to him.
He looked down at the picture he received in the mail from his father…and shuddered in mild disgust at the pose the woman in it gave, as if she were expecting an older person.
"'Look at this'," he read on the photo, as the woman had an arrow pointing to her partially-exposed cleavage. "It's not like I even have the time for a romantic relationship. I have time…so long as I follow the Rules…but to play the Game… It's only to protect myself from others like me, not to go after them."
If it wasn't the fact that he carried a tanto dagger that he had a special permit to carry, Shinji Ikari would've been mistaken for a regular boy. A regular, ten-year-old boy, that is.
"…Are you sure that the picture's accurate?" Ritsuko Akagi asked on the phone, trying to get confirmation over date the Third Child's photo. "But…this photograph is similar to the one taken four years ago…and the ones taken three years after this…incident that took place."
Once she obtained the information she was looking for regarding the picture, she hung up her cell phone and turned to face Gendo Ikari in his office as they prepared to head to Central Dogma for the JSSDF's defense strategy against the Third Angel.
"Well?" Gendo asked her.
"The picture's authentic," she revealed. "The day it was taken, his appearance, everything."
"Except that he looks like a ten-year-old."
"According to his medical records, the incident occurred a month before his eleventh birthday. After that, nothing was the same for him."
"What matters now is whether or not we can even use him."
"We might be able to, but we won't know for sure until we see him."
"…So, you're him?" Misato asked the little boy in the passenger seat of her Renault. "You're Shinji Ikari?"
The ten-year-old boy looked at her and responded, "Not what you were expecting?"
"I was expecting you to be a bit more…taller."
"And I was expecting you to be wiser. And if not wiser, at least punctual…and not a person that looks like one of those swimsuit models."
"Are you sure you're fourteen?"
"Last time I checked, I was."
"But…you're… How can this be?"
"You wouldn't believe me, even if I told you. Even if I could tell anyone. Why did that man send for me, anyway? He never even came to see me, not even after what his in-laws did to me. I don't really care what he does for a living, nothing should keep one from seeing someone else when they're in a state of incapacitation."
"What did they do to you?"
"Really want to know?"
"It can't have been that bad."
"Forgive my choice of words, Ms. Katsuragi…but that bitch of a maternal aunt I had…tried to kill me four years ago. She screwed up my already-screwed-up life."
"Your…your aunt…tried to kill you?"
"Why else would I have been removed from their house? The doctors said that she had temporary insanity, but I didn't see anything in her that was crazy. I know crazy, and her attempt on my life was not crazy. It was premeditated. She just didn't count on a Good Samaritan showing up by the kitchen window and seeing what she did."
"So…what did she…"
"A baseball bat to the back of my head…and then a stab to my chest. I still get migraines and heart attacks every now and then."
Their conversation had occurred nearly an hour after they both saw the giant monster that Misato addressed as an Angel (though Shinji had to express that he had seen an angel that was more forgiving and merciful than that of a giant monster). And Misato found that, despite the claim that he was fourteen, she could barely take him serious because of his appearance. But there was something else about him that was odd, and it wasn't the fact that she saw him with a tanto dagger on his person, something she needed to ask him about.
"What's with the tanto?" She asked him.
"Protection," he uttered, being simple.
"Protection? Protection from whom?"
"Anyone I have to use it against."
"I've never seen a tanto save anyone."
"Then you look in the wrong places. However, while I'm here, I hope I don't have to use it."
"Then why bring it?"
"It's the same principle as a condom; I'd rather have it and not need it than to need it and not have it. I've seen a lot of people's lives get turned upside-down because of their reckless choices that involve sex and drugs. Contracting HIV because they either didn't use rubbers or because they shared needles, schoolgirls having babies because of either being rape victims whose parents are pro-lifers or because they were used and cast aside by heartless men or even because they decided to make pregnancy pacts like they know everything. Two months ago, I had to attend the funeral of a friend that died from tuberculosis, and what infuriates me about her death is that she didn't deserve to die from an illness that could've been treated and cured."
This, however, Misato found herself able to take serious. Even from a ten-year-old that spoke like an educated fourteen-year-old.
With the JSSDF's failure to do away with the Angel, command over the situation had been transferred to NERV.
"How will you handle the situation, Ikari?" Kozo Fuyutsuki asked Gendo.
"I intend to activate Unit-01," he answered.
"But…we have no pilot."
"Not to be concerned. Another spare is arriving soon."
The picture was one thing, but to see Shinji in person was another thing altogether. And this was something Ritsuko found disturbing because he looked and sounded like a child four years below NERV's pilot requirements, not just the fact that he had a tanto on his person.
"Are you sure this is him?" She asked Misato when she brought him in.
"Uh, yeah," Misato answered. "This is him."
Shinji looked up at her and said, "I'm what? I look like a ten-year-old? I look like a pipsqueak?"
Against her better judgment, Ritsuko nodded that he was on the mark.
"Well, you're a faux-blond," he retorted kindly back to her. "I know blonds, and you're no blond. You're a brunette."
This surprised both ladies. He had just met both of them today, and he knew right then that Ritsuko was hiding her actual hair color.
Being led through the hall and into an elevator by them, Shinji, who had been given a booklet by Misato earlier and skimmed through the pages, finding nothing of any importance, thought back to the day his life almost ended and pretty much did. Just not in the usual sense. That day, that time in the kitchen, that bat and knife.
"…As in oni," he heard Dr. Akagi say to Ms. Katsuragi. "A Japanese demon."
"You're disgracing the myths and legends with your scientific babble," he shared his opinion with them, casting the booklet aside onto the floor. "I call it babble when I know absolutely nothing about why I'm here or why that man sent for me to come here."
"Didn't your father send you a letter explaining why?" Ritsuko asked him.
"A piece of paper that says, 'Come to Tokyo-3' doesn't really say anything. If this is an organization built on lies and half-truths…and the only reason he sent for me is based on a lie or half-truth…I'm better off wanting nothing to do with him beyond what nearly got me killed."
The elevator stopped and the ladies led him out into another hallway.
It's hard to look at him without taking him serious, thought Ritsuko, turning back to look down at him every few seconds, seeing him look back at them. What happened to him?
Shinji stopped for a moment, looking down another hallway, and then resuming his following of the ladies.
"I have a question that doesn't concern what's going on here," he spoke. "Are there any churches or temples around here? Cemeteries? Shrines?"
"It's Tokyo-3," went Misato. "There isn't anything like that around here."
"Crap," he sighed.
They stopped in front of a door and Ritsuko led them inside a dark room.
FLASH! The lights came on, temporarily blinding Shinji.
"Ah!" He gasped, shielding his eyes from the light. "Don't do that! What are you, stupid?! Turning on the lights without even a warning! Whoa!"
In front of him was a giant, armored face with a horn. Purple in predominant color with bits of green. It was surrounded by a pool of water and a bridge.
From Shinji's perspective, it had to be at least a few hundred feet.
What the Hell does this asshole want with me that would jeopardize my safety from those that would come after my head? He wondered, clutching his tanto.
"How is this possible?" He then heard a voice that was undeniably cruel, and looked up at a window of an observation room where a man that made the color black the old tan and brown, with orange-tinted glasses. "How are you still…as you were four years ago?"
"To be simple, it's your sister-in-law's fault," he answered the man. "Now answer this question… What the Hell do you want with me…and why should I consider doing anything for you after all these years?"
This was just too weird for everyone present that saw Shinji. If they had all read his file that NERV had on him, they knew he was fourteen…but the way he looked and talked just didn't fit with his age. If anything else, they just found him to be…very disturbing and abnormal.
"Listen carefully to what I'm going to tell you," Gendo uttered to his son. "You're going to pilot the Eva and fight the Angel."
"Are you high?" Shinji asked him.
"What?" Gendo went.
"Are you high? Are you using drugs, heroin, weed…because I think you're off. Way off."
They couldn't believe Shinji was asking this. But then again, it was unexpected to hear anyone ask such questions.
"You actually think I can face something like that monster out there that I can't even hold responsible for the destruction of a city just because it showed up so suddenly? Look at me. Look at me. What makes you suspect that I can do anything for you? And why would you think I could? In case you haven't noticed, I didn't reach my average height."
He was less than four feet tall, practically the size of a little child, not a dwarf or leprechaun or some other small creature. And yet NERV was trying to use him to save their lives.
"The truth, old man," Shinji enforced his desire to know the reason.
But Gendo found himself unable to address his son with seriousness.
"I'll tell you what," Shinji then told him. "I'll try and do this for you once. Once. And if it goes well, you tell me what the Hell is going on here…and don't shortchange me. I didn't survive this long by being taken advantage of."
At least he's willing to try and help us out here, thought Misato as the crew present got to work on getting the Eva to work with Shinji.
The Third Angel, Sachiel, despite his bruises and compensated face to replace the original that had been burnt and blown off, continued on his path to where this cruel and unforgiving feeling dwelled. These people…these…Lilim…and their obstacles, their arts and crafts were nothing short of a hindrance that got in his way and refused to let up. If they continued to interfere with this delicate matter, he wouldn't hold back on eliminating any pests.
It was embarrassing for NERV when Shinji was put into the Entry Plug; while it was designed to accommodate a small person, it didn't include him, for his feet couldn't even reach the bottom of the seat and his hands couldn't reach the handles in front of him unless he got out of the seat and stood up. And right now, stand up in the plug wasn't an option for them with their limited timetable to stop the Angel.
"Preparing to flood the Entry Plug," Shinji heard a female voice inside the plug, and then saw an orange liquid filling the confined space up.
"Hey!" He shouted. "You idiots! You didn't even warn me!"
"Don't worry," said Ritsuko told him in Central Dogma. "Once your lungs have been saturated with LCL, your blood will be oxygenated directly. You'll get used to it."
"You do realize that you put me in a small space…full of liquid…that smells like blood, right?" He questioned. "Don't get cute with me."
"Oh, pipe down," went Misato to him. "You're a boy, you know."
"What has that to do with what you just did?"
"Yeah, what does that have to do with what we just did?" A female technician asked her.
"Synchronization is holding at…eighty-six percent," said another female technician.
"Eighty-six percent?" Ritsuko questioned. "That's amazing."
"Prepare to launch Unit-01," Misato ordered.
The purple behemoth was moved to the catapult system and shot straight up a shaft.
Dammit! Shinji thought, feeling like he was about to jump out of his skin because it tightened too much. "Oh!"
The behemoth stopped and stood up in the middle of several buildings…and the creature that had been attacked and had fought back earlier.
This thing in front of Sachiel. It had a mild resemblance to somehow he worshipped greatly…but the stench of it…was that of someone that shouldn't have been around long ago and caused grief. He knew what needed to be done now before he did anything else, and that was to reduce this…abomination created by the Lilim to pulp before it became a distraction.
Walking under one's own power was simple enough, but making something you suddenly found out was attached to your nervous system was something else entirely different. This was something Shinji found out the instant he was instructed on what to do. It would've been easier if there were pedals for his feet. At least he had his tanto with him, which he held for luck.
Unfortunately, while the Eva did begin the process of walking, it wasn't going anywhere towards the Angel. It was moving left, walking around a different set of city blocks.
"Shinji, what are you doing?" Misato asked him over the intercom.
"It's not me," he responded. "This thing's got a mind of its own. I think 'walk', it decides differently! If anything, this doesn't make anything easy as simply sitting in the damn seat!"
The Eva then went around the block it stopped moving past and approached the Angel.
"Oh, now you want to go to the Angel? Now, you want to go to the Angel! Stupid machine!" Shinji expressed, just in time to watch the Angel reach out to grab him. "Aah!"
He thought of blocking with his arms, a simple instinct used by many of his experience when they lack other defenses, and the Eva imitated his thought. But it didn't keep the Angel from grabbing the Eva and begin crushing its right arm, sending a foreign signal of discomfort to Shinji's arm.
"Aaaurgh!" He screamed, feeling like the creature was actually grabbing him. "Let go! Let go!"
"Shinji, pay attention!" Misato told him. "That's not your arm the Angel's grabbing! It's all in your head!"
"My ass!" Shinji retorted. "I bet this abomination was never even tested!"
He thought of bashing the Angel's face in, and the Eva did that with its left arm.
Unfortunately, the Angel had succeeded in doing what it had intended to do, which was break the Eva's right arm, which caused Shinji intense pain in turn.
"The right arm has sustained damage!" One of the technicians informed.
On the various, holographic monitors, the sight of the Eva and Angel was an intense scene. The Eva was now forced to back away since its pilot was feeling pain.
"What about Shinji?" Misato questioned.
"His synchronization with the Eva's dropping," another technician informed her.
The Angel grabbed the Eva by its head and began bashing it with an energy pike in its left arm, trying to impale it through.
"That armor can't last against that type of punishment!" Ritsuko gasped.
As it kept pounding at the Eva's head, the pilot's synchronization continued to decline rapidly.
BASH! The Angel had impaled the Eva's head and sent it flying backwards onto the ground, and a geyser of blood shot out of the Eva's head, spraying everywhere.
"Unit-01 has gone silent!" A female technician shouted.
"The pilot's condition is unknown!" A male technician added.
"We have no choice," said Misato, realizing that it was a mistake to make Shinji do this, even if he wasn't a ten-year-old boy and just looked like one. "Abort the operation! We have to rescue the pilot! Eject the Entry Plug!"
"We can't! We've lost all contact with the Eva!" The female technician revealed.
Within the plug, bleeding above his right eye, Shinji slipped in and out of consciousness as he thought back to the day he was attacked by his maternal aunt. How far the extent of her contempt for him went when she struck him in the back and the moment she stabbed him in the heart with the kitchen knife.
"You good-for-nothing brat!" She yelled at him. "What good are you if your own father doesn't want you around?! Why don't you just die?! Die like your mother!"
He clutched his tanto close to his chest as his memory redirected to the moment he was found and taken to the hospital after the Good Samaritan found him and called the police.
"What happened to him?"
"He was struck and stabbed by his aunt."
"He has some defensive wounds on his wrists."
"She was trying to kill him, but he tried to defend himself."
"The cousin is claiming the boy brought this on himself."
"The uncle's defending his wife's actions against their nephew."
He kept wondering why he hadn't died yet; he'd been stabbed in his chest and that should've done the job of putting him down. But instead, he was found by the doctors to be suddenly on the mend, something about how his body was lucky enough to avoid a stab that was known to kill instantly if not treated in time. It didn't make any sense to him.
"The aunt claims she didn't really mean to hurt him," he heard a policeman say to a doctor, "but we shouldn't send the boy back to his aunt and uncle at all. If he was attacked like this by just the aunt and the uncle didn't realize what had happened until he got home and the cousin did nothing to stop her, he's not safe with them."
"It's not like we can send him back to his father. We actually tried to get in touch with him…and he said not to bother with him such a trivial matter." A doctor explained. "His son was attacked by his sister-in-law, and he views it as a trivial matter? He's such a cruel man."
"Then…he has nobody willing to take him?"
Oh, how Shinji thought his life was in tatters after that unfaithful day that rendered him locked in time…until they came for him.
"Um, excuse us, but is this Shinji Ikari's room?" A female voice asked outside his room as he looked up at the ceiling.
"Who are you two?" A policewoman asked.
"We might be his only distant relatives on his father's side," a male voice responded.
At that moment, he felt an unusual sensation that was unlike anything else he had felt up until the day his aunt tried to kill him. It was like a buzzing noise, only it was in his head.
"Shinji Ikari, you have visitors," the doctor informed him as they stepped inside.
Behind the doctor was a couple that he hadn't seen before. The man had fading, ebony hair and was likely in his early-forties, with purple eyes, dressed in jeans and a blue shirt. The woman, however, was in her mid to late-thirties, with shoulder-length hair of the same coloration, minus the fading, with silver eyes, dressed in a summer yukata of pink and yellow colors. While they seemed kind enough, the boy was traumatized by what happened to him just a week ago.
"How are you feeling today, Shinji?" The woman asked him as they sat down around his bed.
"Are you…going to try and kill me?" He uttered, shutting his eyes and turning his head to the left, looking away from the woman and at the small window.
"I don't blame you for saying that," she expressed; she had been informed that he would likely be traumatized by the attempt on his life and would likely view adults, men and women, with fear that just because his maternal aunt tried to off him. "No, none of us are going to hurt you."
The fear of being killed can make anyone ask if they're going to be killed by anyone else, thought Shinji, now slipping fully into unconsciousness. There… Can… Be… Only… One…
The Eva's remaining eye flared back to life…and its mouth, which had been bolted shut, ripped open to reveal red, metallic teeth.
"GRAAAAAAAAAAAAAURGH!" It roared, an unholy blend between the organic and the technological, staring at the Angel.
"The Eva has reactivated," said a female technician.
"This isn't possible," a male technician added. "The pilot's synchronization graphs are still in the negative! There's no syncing between either the Eva or the boy!"
"My God," went Misato in realization.
"The Eva's out of control," said Ritsuko, unsure about what would happen.
The Eva raised its left arm…and some sort of yellow-orange, electrical energy emanated from it, forming into a sword. It lowered the energy sword in front of its armored face.
The Angel was confused by this unexpected behavior, unsure of how to go about its agenda.
"That looks like…a katana," said Fuyutsuki to Gendo, just as the Eva charged towards the Angel.
SLASH! The energy cut clean through the Angel's right arm, sending it to the streets below!
"Aaah!" The Angel shrieked, now bleeding blue blood from it severed limb.
The Eva ran around a building block as the Angel fired its energy beams, missing the Eva, but severing its external power supply cable. It then went around the block to the back of the Angel as it turned around to face the cybernetic behemoth.
SLASH! Its left arm was then severed from its body.
"Could Shinji be doing this?" Misato asked Ritsuko.
"No way," the faux-blond answered. "If there's no synchronization, there's no response from the pilot. I don't see how any of this behavior is his."
And she didn't strike me as a student of any swordsmanship, either, thought Fuyutsuki, being cryptic in his mind.
On the screens, Unit-01's right arm regenerated and held the lower half of the energy sword's hilt, brandishing it at the Angel's core.
DASH! It then shot like a bullet at the Angel and swung its blade in half a second, stopping just three feet away from the back of the Angel.
As the energy blade suddenly disappeared from the Eva's hands, the Angel's core fell from its body…along with a large portion of its upper body, just in between its shoulder, removing the patch of flesh that served as the location of its head. The core had been sliced in half, its cut edges having chips of its crystalline structure flaking off as it hit the streets below.
"Incredible," several technicians expressed.
Before Misato could give an order to send a rescue unit to the Eva, the Angel's body began to rise from off the ground where it fell…along with the Eva. Some sort of electrical energy outlined the Angel's body, including where the arms, head and core once were…and a burst of light emanated from it, sending a surge towards Unit-01! This unexpected phenomenon, unlike anything anyone had anticipated, sent a massive feedback throughout the city going seven blocks in all directions, shattering the glass windows. It lasted for about a minute or so until the Angel and Eva dropped to the ground.
"Unbelievable," Misato gasped; she wouldn't have believed this had she not seen it for herself.
Even though he wasn't conscious, he still knew the immense sensation he felt when he had. It was undeniable to Shinji's subconscious mind. Something had happened that resulted in something similar to what he had experienced not too long after he had been removed from his maternal relatives' custody and placed within the care of these people that were said to be from his father's side of the family. He had received a Quickening; all that he knew, all that he was…was improved, enhanced, strengthened, made greater than before.
As he clutched his tanto tighter, the same thought he had as he lost consciousness echoed in his head: There can be only one.
To be continued…
A/N: What do you think, readers?! This is my first crossover between Neon Genesis Evangelion and the Highlander franchise! And Shinji got a Quickening from an Angel! Let me know what you think of it!