Disclaimer: If you don't know, I don't own Neo Genesis Evangelion. If you do know, why in the name of heck are you reading this? I don't own the book, The Living Weapon, but I do have permission to use elements of it. Gainax owns Eva, and NERV owns the children. And you've never heard of The Living Weapon, because it isn't out yet. I think. Or do I? *Screams in frustration.*

Ocean Red

Chapter 1: When a Weapon and an Angel Meet…

A Neo Genesis Evangelion Fanfiction

By CrimsonNoble

Shinji stepped off the train, holding his bag slung over his shoulder. He looked up as he started to walk away, gazing at the various clouds.

He discovered that this was a bad idea as he tumbled forward off the platform and down the stairs. He ended up on his back, the bottom stair digging into his lower back. Slowly he tumbled one final time, coming down flat on his stomach with his head next to the stairs.

An unintelligible mumble escaped his mouth, and he rolled over, finally gasping out, "ouch…"

His bag fell of the last step, smacking into his face. Ordinarily this might not have hurt, but right now his pack was filled with steel. In other words, it hurt. Bad.

Shinji's hands reached up, and pushed off the bag. Still a little unfocused, he gazed at the clouds. "Ooooou! Pretty clouds!"

He had to use both hands to push himself off the ground. He sat up, a vacantly happy look adorning his face. He turned, and gazed down the street.

A girl in a school uniform stood there, her crimson eyes fixated on where he sat. Not fully functioning, or immersed in the Power, he failed to notice that she wasn't entirely there.

A flock of birds took flight, alerting him. He glanced around once, and then turned back to the girl, who was simply gone. For a moment, his eyes took up approximately eighty percent of his face.

The scream of jet engines distracted him, and by the time he had finished turning to look he had taken a guess at what model the craft was. The scream of a cruise missile drew his attention.

"Cool! Cruise missiles!"

The missiles smashed into… a… thing. It was massive, likely forty-five stories in height at least. It looked like some sort of golem, vaguely human in appearance, but with its head squashed down into its torso, a head that looked like a bird's. Its arms and legs were obscenely long, and there was not possible way that limbs so thin could support its weight. But then again, Shinji was technically impossible.

Various parts of the… Sachiel?—were covered in a white bone-like material, and a red orb was set in the center of its abdomen.

The Power flooded into him, and in annoyance he shoved it roughly away, irritated that he couldn't fully embrace it. After all, the Ancient One had told him that no one was allowed to know. And the Ancient One didn't allow him to disagree with things like that.

Some sort of VTOL's swarmed the thing, like moths to a flame. The JSSDF didn't seem to know that they couldn't win, and unleashed a torrent of firepower at the Sachiel.

Sachiel didn't blink at the power that assaulted him. It reached out with one three-'fingered' hand, and from the center of its palm burst a lance of purple light.

Shinji's eyes nearly glowed with delight as he fought urge to cackle with glee.

The lance skewered several VTOL's, sending them crashing in pieces to the earth. One impacted fairly close, sending a rain of fire and shrapnel through the air. Shinji stood perfectly still, delighting in the adrenaline coursing through his veins, ready for his life to end.

Abruptly a blue sports car screeched to a halt in front of him, shielding him from the blast. A lady threw open the door, the lady whose picture, he absently noted as he scrambled to get in, making sure to grab his bag, was with the envelope in his pocket.

The door slammed shut as he got in, and the lady pulled out in a screech of tires.

"Sorry I'm late," were the first spoken words.

"You're not late. You'd be late if you were dead. And you're obviously not dead, so…" Shinji flippantly replied.

"This is not the time to joke."

"Of course it is. The UN and JSSDF are being massacred, and I'd rather laugh than cry." Shinji cheerfully retorted.

"You're disgustingly cheerful given the circumstances, you know."

The circumstances are perfect to be cheerful, there's a giant, all-but-invincible thing wandering around in Tokyo-3, there are soldiers being slaughtered, there's a cruise missile being deflected off that building—"

Said missile exploded, flipping the car a full 360 degrees, probably all but destroying the shocks, and threatening a severe case of whiplash.

"—and the car was just flipped. What's there to not be cheerful about?" Shinji finished unperturbed. Noticing the driver's state of mind, he asked, "you okiies?"

Katsuragi-san stared blankly out the window, mumbling like a scratched record, "Any more and I don't know… any more and I don't know…"

"Perhaps we should move, maybe?"

She looked up, and jammed her foot onto the gas pedal as the Sachiel's foot crashed down on a building, sending dust and plaster raining through the air. The car tumbled off down the road, shuddering with every bounce.

Shinji's teeth rattled a merry tune in his skull as the car reached the tunnels. Just before they entered the tunnels, the N2 mine detonated, flipping them over again. The car landed on its side, and fell almost ponderously onto the roof, the groan of stressed metal and breaking glass giving other music to the percussion of the detonation.

Shinji looked placidly at Katsuragi-san, who was mumbling, "nomorenomoernomorenomorenomorenomorenomorenomore…" so fast that she was slurring the words together into one.

Sighing he tugged on her sleeve. "Perhaps we should turn the car over and get inside wherever we're going, hmm-ahh?"

She nodded feebly, and sort of floomphed out of the car onto the street. Shinji floomphed after her, giggling inanely.

Katsuragi-san used the car to pull herself to her feet, dazedly looking out into space with glazed eyes. She joined Shinji at the car, and gave a half-hearted tug. So she was surprised when the car flipped again, but the combination of shell shock and surprise was already too much, so it didn't register heavily.

Shinji hopped into the now heavily battered car, and bounced in his seat a little before settling down. The driver collapsed into her seat, and just barely managed to get into the 'car-tram-thing', as Shinji called it, before going limp, barely hearing his almost-exaggerated exclamations of awe.

By the time they reached the NERV pyramid, Katsuragi-san had composed herself, and begun to explain to Shinji about what they, NERV, did.

An elevator popped open in front of them several minutes later, several minutes of a mix of right and wrong turns that had them going in circles. A blonde lady wearing only a swimsuit and lab coat stepped out, glaring in an irritated way at Katsuragi-san.

"Lost again, Misato?"

Misato even managed a cheeky grin, her tongue poking between her teeth.

Shinji yawned, unimpressed.

"So is he the Third Children?"

Shinji blinked, looked around, and gave her a somewhat vacant glare. "I have siblings?! And nobody told me!?"

Misato slipped on a patch of orange liquid.

The blonde stared.

Shinji stared back.

Misato groaned and tried to get up.

(::)

The catwalk creaked ominously as Shinji stepped on.

"Jeez Shinji, how much do you weigh?" Misato joked, slipping back into her old self.

Shinji thought for a moment, before replying, "Probably around one seventy-five, why?" At her astonished look, he amended, "oh. That was one of those rhetorical questions, right?"

Then he turned toward something… big. And purple. And green. He turned to bolt screaming, "Noooooo! Barney's back!"

Misato giggled, but grabbed the back of his collar anyway.

Akagi-san, Ritsuko, forever imbedded as 'Blondie' in Shinji's mind called back, "She's not Barney. She's a man-made, all-purpose battle weapon," Blondie now had Shinji's bull attention, attracting it with 'battle', and cementing it with 'weapon'. "Artificial Human Evangelion! The last chance for humanity, this is the first unit, also the Prototype."

Shinji looked at it hard for a moment before announcing his verdict.

"Its big. And purple. And mustn't forget the green. Does that sound royally wrong to anyone else?"

"Yes. When you put it that way, it does." Came a cold voice from above them.

Shinji looked up at the newest inhabitant of the chamber. He broke into a dumbass grin, "hey old man! How's it hangin'?" He greeted with a wave.

Gendo Ikari's free hand twitched. "You are going to ride in her, and you are going to battle the angel." He ploughed doggedly on.

Shinji thought for a moment. "What angel?" The room shook with the impact of the blast from the angel's attack.

"Oh. That angel. Sooo," he said in an infuriatingly calm voice, "you're going to pay me to go out in something I've never seen before, let alone touched, to battle something that has thusfar proven itself all-but-invincible?"

Misato had already begun to object before Shinji had finished his first sentence. "Wait a moment commander! It took even Rei seven months to synchronize with the Eva – remember?"

Shinji continued as if he hadn't heard her. "Cool! When do I start?"

Blondie and Misato slipped in orange goo. Gendo… tripped on his sholace.

Blondie stood with a small noise of protest. "Right this way then…" she stuttered, pressing her hand into the small of her back. Shinji hopped after her, metal-filled duffle clanging softly as it bounced on his back. He whistled almost sadistically as Blondie stumbled into a door. She handed him what looked like a pair of cat's ears. Metal cat's ears.

Shinji examined them closely for a moment before slipping them on. He glanced into a reflective surface before proclaiming, "I'm assuming that this isn't just some sort of bizarre fashion statement, right?"

"They're for helping you pilot. Now get into the plug before I force you."

"Highly unlikely that you could, but anyway, make sure that no one screws with my bag, okiies? There's some stuff in there that if not handled properly… well, lets just say I once used it to blow up my school's Chemistry Lab." He turned and skipped toward the cylindrical plug-thingy.

Shinji peered inside before plopping into his seat.

"Inserting entry plug!" A sensation of impossibly swift momentum for a machine upset his inner ear, dizzying him momentarily.

"Flooding entry plug!" Something orange poured into the plug.

"What in the name of Amel!?"

"Don't be alarmed!" Blondie's voice echoed into the rapidly filling plug. "Once your lungs are saturated with the LCL, you'll be able to undergo direct oxygen exchange!"

Shinji forced himself to calm, reminding himself that if all else failed that he could take his true form with the simple removal of the stylized leather band around his left wrist. He took a deep breah, letting the fluid flood his lungs.

So surprised was he when it felt natural, though it carried the delicious almost arousing copper taste of blood, that he missed what the techies were saying. Even if he didn't understand, he liked to know what was going on around him.

"Evangelion Unit-01, launch!"

"Releasing primary lock bolt!"

"Release confirmed! Retracting umbilical bridge!"

"Releasing primary and secondary restraints, tertiary pending!"

"Proceed."

"Release of tertiary restraints confirmed!"

"Launch the catapult!"

The g-forces crushed Shinji into his seat as the Eva rocketed surface-ward. The ride was halted abruptly as the Eva hit the end of the tracks, snapping its head back.

"Releasing final safety locks!"

Shinji's cobalt eyes literally glowed with the Power as he stared at the Angel.

Abruptly the camera feed cut off as Shinji reached for his left wrist.

The Eva started forward, glaring at the Angel from beneath its helmet. Slowly its speed increased until it was in a full sprint toward the stationary Sachiel.

Eva-01 crashed into Sachiel at full tilt, throwing both of them backward into a building, crushing it. Plaster dust covered black skin and purple armor. A gas line ruptured, spewing toxic fumes into the air.

Sachiel lifted its left arm, and from its palm burst the coruscating beam of violet light.

The light caught the Eva full in the chest, blowing backward and upward. The bio-mechanical clone literally flew for several long seconds before crashing down to the earth, pulverizing several buildings in the process. It reached out, using adjacent buildings to force itself to its feet. For several more long seconds the Eva and Angel glared at each other through a city block.

Without warning, both the Eva and the Angel acted. The Eva broke into a full sprint, bursting through some buildings, and simply stepping on and crushing others. The Angel's eyes flashed, and the Cross explosion, or rather the Seraphim Touch to use the proper name, shattered the general vicinity of where the Eva had been.

The Eva launched itself into the air, turning a full flip before coming down feet first at the Angel.

Sachiel simply stepped forward a tad, and caught the Eva's feet, using the clone's momentum to drive it face first into the concrete and tar. For a moment the two held their positions, the Eva resting in its crater, and the Angel gripping its calves.

Then, out of nowhere, the Eva turned a somersault, lifting the Angel over the clone's head with its own grip, and coming down hard. In a continuation of the same move, the Eva came up straddling Sachiel's thin waist. Almost nonchalantly, as if the blow didn't matter, as if the battle had been a foregone conclusion from the start, Unit-01 drove its arm all the way up to the shoulder through the Third Angel's body, beginning at the bird-like face, and ending several meters into the earth.

Eva Unit-01 stood, and with a keening, undulating screech, not unlike that of a velociraptor or a bird of prey, announced to the world its rebirth.

END CHAPTER ONE

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