Straight Blade thought the blood she had coughed up was starting to pool in her mask as Gal'Vakir twisted the combistick impaled through her chest and into the brick wall behind her. Gal'Vakir had taken her mask off so the ooman Unblood could see the twisted smirk on the Sinister Eye Huntress' face as she reveled in torturing the brutalized Huntress-In-Training. Straight Blade gritted her teeth as she fought not to give the Bad Blood the pleasure of listening to her scream in pain.
"It is alright to scream, Yui-chan," Gal'Vakir grinned, pushing the spear deeper through her. "You are ooman, after all. It's only natural." She reached forward and unclipped Straight Blade's mask, revealing her reddened, teary eyes and enraged face. The Bad Blood turned the mask around so that her blood would spill onto the ground, "There's no need to keep the pain bottled in."
Straight Blade spat blood, spraying it all over the bitch's face. "Eat…my taint… brother fucking proug'nik."
Gal'Vakir ran her tongue around her mouth, licking the red up from around her lips. Still grinning she let go of the spear and got a little too close to Yui so that she was practically breathing her air. Straight Blade's defiance faded and she became that much paler when she felt Gal'Vakir fingers play with the straps of her thong underneath her armored loincloth.
"How about you eat mine instead, little ooman?" Gal'Vakir hissed. "Mine, Mal's, and our uncle-"
Straight Blade coughed up more blood as Gal'Vakir suddenly pulled the combistick out of her and swung it to block Gaun's frenzied swings, leaving her to slide down the wall and sit in a puddle of her own blood. Looking up she could faintly make out Gaun as she swung her wristblade wildly at the Sinister Eye huntress bellowing angrily, enraged at how Gal'Vakir treated her daughter; Straight Blade mentally reasoned just as she felt her world slowly become darker.
She stirred sometime later when she heard desperate voices.
"…won't leave her…"
"She won't…in time back to the ship. She's d…either way."
"…leave her h…oomans….can save her."
"Yui…Blade…so sorry…daughter…forgive me…"
Straight Blade felt her wrist comps being unclipped from her arms and her bandolier being stripped off her body before feeling herself being carefully laid on the concrete ground. She slowly opened her eyes to see ooman automated glass doors with a red + symbol on them. A roar can be heard followed by the sound of glass shatter and she struggled to turn her head to the other side. Just in time to see her mother's backside as she ran in opposite direction.
D-don't leave me...
She struggled to reach out towards her futilely as she activated her cloaking field and disappeared.
Mother…please…don't leave me here…
I don't…want todiealone….
"What was the soun-? HEY! SOMEONE GET A STRETCHER, STAT!"
"God…she's bleeding out! What did this?!"
Those ooman voices became distant as she faded out once again, the tears falling from her eyes when she realized that her mother had just abandoned her.
Chapter 20 – Beloved
Naked save for the bandages covering her wounds Gaun shot up from the platform she had been resting on, panting as he dreadlocks covered her eyes. Brushing them away as she felt a cold chill of fear as her vision adjusted itself to her surroundings as she made out the medical bay onboard the Clan Huntship, and she was only one in the room save for M'kanosa, who had her back turned to her until she cried out the name of her lost child.
"You still refer to Straight Blade by her ooman name?" M'kanosa simply asked as if nothing was wrong.
"Why am I here!?" Gaun cried, quickly reaching for her loincloth and wrappings. "Where's Nam and Merl'we?"
Realizing her patient was coming close to having a panic attack M'kanosa put her hands gently on her shoulders, "Easy-"
"Where are my children?!" Gaun exclaimed as shoved her back. She was getting angry, "Bloodied Mail, you old tetch'na! Where are you?!"
"Right in front of you. And did I hear you say 'children', not just referring to Curved Blade?"
Gaun looked ahead to find Bloodied Mail sitting down at the far end on a chair. His arms were crossed and he appeared stern. Gaun just simply glared back, trying to move she just cried out in pain as if something just snapped inside her.
"You just took me, Merl'we and Nam, didn't you?!" Gaun exclaimed. "You left Curved Blade and Dagger Strike behind!"
"And it was easier than I anticipated," Bloodied Mail shrugged. "We just went in and reclaimed you three just before their soldiers returned for the lot of you."
"We just returned to this world hours ago," M'kanosa explained, feeling weary about putting her hands on Gaun. Seeing how the larger female hadn't tried to deck her again she went back to work tending to her injuries. "It's done."
"I don't care-AH!" Gaun cried, wincing as M'kanosa checked her bandages that were spilling green all over. "We can finally depart this miserable rock and leave humanity to its not-fate now that Adam out of its reach and in…" She growled in disgust. "His hands." She leveled another glare at her own Elder. "Let me get my children and we can-"
"He handed Adam over."
Gaun blinked, "…what?"
Bloodied Mail stood up and walked right over to Gaun. A comforting hand on her shoulder rapidly turned to grabbing her by the back of her head and pulling her up so that they were eye level, Gaun gasping from the pain in her opened wounds and startling M'kanosa.
"I said He handed Adam over," Bloodied Mail reiterated dangerously, clearly unhappy Gaun was talking to him this way. "He had no more use for it at the moment so he decided to act the sadistic hack'nikt he is and sell it like he would sell his usual stables of flesh."
Bloodied Mail turned his head at the sound of the door opening to see a distraught, bandaged Merl'we and Nam standing in the doorway. Nam had never looked so angry and Merl'we looked fit to burst into tears, no doubt having found out what happened to Shinji and Mana.
"To who?" Nam asked dangerously.
NERV Headquarters. Tokyo-03. Japan. Ten hours later.
Wearing only a hospital gown and with bandages around her head Misato came to with a massive headache that trumped even the worst hangover she had ever had. She groggily opened her eyes, the ceiling light in her eye obscuring the figure sitting down beside her bed. "Shinji?" she muttered hopefully as she turned her head.
"Nope, sorry, Katsuragi," came the response. Misato groaned as her vision cleared and she saw Kaji, looking relieved and sporting injuries himself, his forehead and right arm covered in gauze and in a sling. Misato scowled and turned her head away in a huff, eliciting a chuckle out of the man. "Yeah I'm embarrassed too. Who'd expect Za Wamu to just tear through light-armored vehicle and toss us out on our asses-"
"Just tell me what I missed and if everyone alright and accounted for," Misato groused. She muttered as she rubbed her forehead, "Not counting the mercs that didn't come back up from the Second Branch. Shit…"
Kaji sighed, "Oh, well. Where to begin? NERV-02 is history, I don't think the Committee plans to blow American tax dollars on rebuilding, but we did manage to recover Unit-05, thank Makinami for that." He smirked and muttered, "That crazed limey." He went on, "Professor Manfred's gone back to Washington, no doubt about to get a hiding for not managing to recover an alien specimen-"
Misato snorted, "Thank all that's good and pure in this world."
"And the aliens, Shinji's aliens, are gone too," Kaji said. Misato's eyebrows raised themselves. "They disappeared just before we left Nevada."
"They…just up and left? Without Shinji?"
"And Mana. And..." Kaji lowered his eyes. "The S2 Organ and the crashed UFO went up in smoke in earth's atmosphere." He paused, giving Misato time to let all sink in. "The Commander isn't happy with him."
The Major sighed, "I'll take the heat, he was under my command."
Kaji shook his head sadly, "Too late."
Misato blinked, "What do you mean 'too late'?" She swallowed, feeling cold fear grip her tightly. "Kaji, where is Shinji?" Kaji opened his mouth to answer but Misato interrupted him by shouting as she sat up abruptly. "Where's Shinji?!"
Kaji's hand were batted away from her shoulders when he gently tried to keep her away from hurting himself. "Asuka, Rei, Mana and Mana's brother were transferred to the ICU right after they arrived here. Nagisa and Makinami are on standby at the moment. Shinji, however, he's disappeared."
"What do you mean-AH!" Misato wrapped her arms around her ribs as a fresh wave of pain washed over her and she doubled over while sitting up on the bed. Gritting her teeth as she grabbed Kaji by the scruff of his shirt and hissed, "Where. Is. Shinji?!"
Curved Blade stirred as a light shone down from the ceiling and roused him from unconsciousness. Groaning in pain, he coughed blood as he felt a least a couple of broken ribs swimming around inside him, one them just prodding against his right lung. He was sitting on the steel ground, his back propped up painfully against the wall and his hands in steel cuffs. Agony blazed through him when he tried to get up and struggle against his bindings, his dimming vision just making out the steel door right in front of him.
Shinji gritted his teeth…
I saw this coming.
He dimmed his eyes as the door in front of opened to reveal Kaworu in casual wear, and looking very unhappy as he stepped into the cell, the door closing behind him.
"…" Shinji just stared at him dull eyed. "Nagisa?"
I didn't see this coming.
"Hello, Kasumi," Kaworu greeted, without any of the usual cheeriness or warmth whenever he spoke to Shinji.
Shinji lowered his head, refusing to look Kaworu in the eye, "Why are you here?"
"I…had to see you."
"You'd probably get in trouble for this."
"I can avoid NERV's Intelligence Agency's scrutiny if I so wished. It felt important for me to be here."
"Worried about me?"
Kaworu blinked, "I'm not sure." He pursed his lips. "I am unsure how I should react to you killing someone…somethingand openly defying the will of NERV."
Almost sounds like he's disappointed in me. Like I'm not what he imagined I am after all.
How does this ooman's brain work exactly?
"You're weird, Nagisa," Shinji knew that was an understatement. "You're not going to help me out of here, are you?"
Kaworu shook his head, "I'm sorry. People will notice, especially the Commander." He glanced over his shoulder at the door, "I never imagined Ikari would be this petty."
"He…wanted me to spare an abomination…that had my bearer's face," Shinji found that it was becoming painful to talk. "Why wouldn't he? Done far worse to me, the fucking tetch'na." Coughing, he forced a pained smile on his face, "Guess…my time's nearly up, huh?"
"You're not afraid of death?" Kaworu asked.
Shinji shook his head, "Not mine."
"Commander Ikari won't kill you. You're important to him."
He glared angrily, "If you're not here to help me you can-"
"Fuck off and let you die in peace?" Kaworu inquired. He gave a small smile, "There's no call for foul language."
Shinji gave a bloody smirk, "I was going…to say 'get out and leave me alone' but," he snorted. "Whatever." He snarled, "Fuck off and let me die in peace."
Kaworu sighed, "You have changed, Kasumi-kun."
Fromwhat?!Who he does think I am?
He felt tired.
Was? Who does he think Iwas?
His vision began to dim.
And the last thing he saw was Kaworu turning his back with a look of disappointment.
Asuka was staring miserably up at an unfamiliar ceiling. Unfamiliar as in she had never been so badly injured that required a stay in a hospital bed. Her left eye socket was covered in gauze and Asuka knew that her eye was lost. Earlier when she tried to move she realized she was strappeddown to the bed, immobilized. Not unlike Rei, Mana and Koji, edge of them unconscious in beds besides her in the same ward and tended to by doctors and accompanying nurses, Rei's broken arm in a sling and Mana and Koji covered in bandages.
What the hell is this?!
"HEY!" Asuka exclaimed angrily, drawing the attention of the staff present. "What the hell is this?!"
"Good to see you're awake, Ms. Sohryu," one of the doctors approached her, a smile on her face.
"Shove it, dummkopf!" Asuka's snarl wiped that smile right off his face with snarl. "Why I am strapped to the goddamn bed?"
The doctor suddenly became impassive, "Commander's orders, Pilot Sohryu."
Alarmed, Asuka demanded, "Wha-WHY?!" She glared, "Was it because I shot that alien bitch in the head?!"
"That's all I'm allowed to say," the doctor answered just as the door opened to reveal a dressed, disheveled and angry Misato who got right up in the doctor's face, Kaji right behind her trying desperately to get her to calm down.
"You sure about that, doctor?" Misato glared straight into the doctor's eyes, causing him to step back in fright.
"Y-yes. Commander Ikari was very specific that Pilot Sohryu and the other patients were not allowed to leave their beds."
"Because I killed something that looked like the Commander's wife!"Asuka shouted. "Yeah I heard what he said, she was Meathead's mom! Looked like Meathead's mom!" She was seething intensely and struggling against her binds, "Verdammt! Get these things off me. You can't do this to me-!"
"Hold on, Asuka," Kaji walked over to her and undid her binds, Asuka calming down immediately, taking deep breaths as she massaged her wrists. "There."
"Finally," Asuka muttered, leaving Kaji surprised that she hadn't shown him any of the cheeriness she normally reserved for him. And she wasn't done glowering, "Now, where's Shinji?"
"Just what I was going to ask," Misato said. "You mind enlightening me, doc?"
"He wasn't brought in here with the other children, major," the doctor replied. "Commander Ikari wasn't specific about where he's being taken or if he's receiving medical attention at the moment."
"Ikari's being awfully petty if he's got him locked away for destroying the Second Branch and stopping those aliens from breaking out," Kaji commented icily. He glanced at Koji and Mana, "I can't imagine what's going to happen to them."
"Nothing if I have anything to say about it," Misato said icily. "Now-"
"Major Katsuragi?" Misato and Kaji turned to see two Section 2 agents standing in the doorway, grim looking as ever. "Commander Ikari's requested your presence. We're to escort you to him immediately."
Misato glared at them, "I know where his office is."
They were unfazed. Their tone of voice unsettled Misato, "Not his office, ma'am."
Shinji came to just as he was dropped on his face before a steel door in a darkened hallway, torches shining on it and revealing the words LCL PLANT: CL3 SEGon a display right next to it. Spluttering from the taste of steel he looked up to see himself surrounded by Section 2 agents, his hands cuffed in front of him.
"Nice of you to finally join us, kid," the lead agent sneered down at him. "The Commander will be coming down to meet us soon."
"…" Shinji forced himself up on his knees, spitting on the floor and right on one of the agent's shoes. "No more use for me?" He gritted his teeth when he felt one of the agents grab him by the dreadlocks and crane his head backward so they could see eye to eye.
"Don't push us, you little fuck," the agent hissed through gritted teeth. "You've killed, what, a few of our guys and the rest of us are just itching to pay you back for each one."
"What's stopping you?" Shinji asked. He knew by this point he was just pushing his luck, but either from pain or simple defiance he just didn't care. One Section 2 agent ran his keycard through the reader next to the door and Shinji was hoisted back on his feet and pushed through the door, grunting as he tripped and landed flat on his stomach. He groaned and rolled on his side, slowly moving up onto his knees.
His eyes were like saucers when his vision cleared long enough for him to see what was crucified at the far side of the chamber.
It was a paya – a god – androgynous and completely white in appearance. It was nailed to a red, stone cross as if they were deliberately attempting to invoke divinity in keeping the abomination that was a torso, it's bottom half missing and orange blood seeping down into the river that ran beneath it. A river that Shinji recognized as LCL, the same fluid he had been breathing in every time he went out in the EVA. Upon its face was a purple mask with seven eyes imprinted upon it. Shinji couldn't tell if it was looking at him but he could somehow feel that the creature was at least aware he was there.
"Would your people consider this the ultimate prey, Third Child?" Shinji bristled when he heard Gendo step into the chamber. Shinji looked straight ahead, eyes wide opened in cold anger as heard the footsteps grow louder until he was standing right behind him, feeling him stare at the back of his head. "Would you throw yourself at it in its state? Would it be considered honorable?"
"Why'd you drag me down here, Ikari?" Shinji grounded out.
"It'd be detrimental to continue to leave you at your own devices, Shinji. So I think it be worth your time to see what's truly at stake here," Gendo explained, walking past Shinji so that he would be in his son's eyeshot. Shinji barely noticed that he was carrying a manila folder in his hands. "This is the reason why the Angels are targeting this city specifically. They are here for the Second." Gendo's looks of contempt perfectly mirrored Shinji's. "Their Second."
"…an Angel?" Shinji snarled. "All this time, you've kept one of them down here?"
At that moment, Rei stirred in her sleep…
"To seal it away and make sure that they wouldn't be able to initiate the end of humanity," Gendo explained. "If one of the Angels manages to penetrate our defenses and make contact it would mean our extinction." Gendo narrowed his eyes, "Possibly even your masters and their entire race."
Shinji's anger didn't let up, "Why are you telling me this now?" He exclaimed, "After everything, why now?!"
"Because I know for a fact your masters know of Lilith. And it's cold of them to not tell you why they have brought your here in the first place," Gendo said, identifying the Angel by its name. "Which is the reason why they took the First – Adam – away from us. They have designs for the Angels, sinister no doubt. And they raised you to be their puppet, their instrument, their weapon against humanity." Gendo paused, allowing it all to sink in. "So…who is hiding important things from you now?"
"PAUK-DE C'JIT EATING FUCKING MOTHERFUCK-ARGH!" Shinji flew into a cursing rage, angry enough to get up one foot only for the pain to force him back down. He looked at the ground to see several black and white photos of land directly in front of him.. "What?"
Through his blurry, pain-addled vision Shinji could make out what appeared to be ultrasounds of a fetus within a female ooman womb. Swallowing, Shinji looked up at him confused. Gendo closing the folder and looking at him stoically. "What's this?"
"…your unborn sibling," Gendo revealed. "A month and a half old if I'm correct." Gendo turned to face Lilith, "Just one more thing you have been fighting for this whole time. And which I would prefer you continue to do, only unquestionably from now on." He looked back at Shinji, his voice sounding firmer. "I will tolerate no more acts of defiance from you. When I give an order for you to preserve alien technology it will be obeyed." Gendo glared, "And I will start by confiscating the tech that is not hardwired to your being-"
"Who?" Shinji interrupted, his face pale as reality sunk in.
"Don't interrupt me-"
"WHO?!" Shinji shouted , coughing lightly. "Who's the bearer?" He gritted his teeth, "It's Akagi, isn't it? You two planned this." His eyes widened when he suddenly felt dread, "Y-you wouldn't-"
"At any time Dr. Akagi can decide that she doesn't want to risk bringing a child into a world that is going to be destroyed at any given moment because the Evangelion's cannot be trusted to put humanity's interest before their own selfish leanings," Gendo explained. "And I will respect her decision to terminate her pregnancy. Likewise, the day comes for her to give birth we may decide there are better places for it to be sent to and we will no longer need to give it a second thought." Gendo couldn't help but revel at how Shinji lowered his head and look like was unable to comprehend a man who could act so callous towards his own unborn child, Shinji's brother or sister. He decided to twist the knife, "Better places…or worse."
Shinji felt nauseous. The thought of Gendo abandoning another child to suffer like he did, he couldn't stop himself from throwing up.
His sick made a splattering sound even though what he spat was mostly bile at this point. It stained the ultrasounds in front of him. "Why?" Shinji coughed out, splattering incoherently.
"Because I have run out of options, and I have run out of patience," Gendo replied. "All your life you believed I was being malicious to you for the sake of it, now I have to be. You forced my hand and you only have yourself to blame."
"…" Shinji just glared up at him.
"There is one thing I do understand about you without a shadow of a doubt. And that is you would never let an innocent suffer," Gendo said. "And you understand I will do whatever it takes to ensure mankind's survival; whatever it takes."
Shinji looked over his shoulder to see Misato standing in the entryway, flanked by two Section-2 agents. Not even Kaji standing behind her, looking equally shocked at she was at the sight of him, could diminish the happiness he felt seeing her again. Misato was at Shinji's side at a heartbeat, helping him lean back away from the sight of his puke. She couldn't stop herself from rounding on Gendo, "What the hell have you been doing to him?!"
"I'm doing what you've been unable to do: Curb his reckless disregard for humanity's survival in pursuit of his revenge against whatever perceived wrongs I've dealt him," Gendo explained. "On that note, I'm reprimanding you for failure in preventing the loss of high-priority assets. Namely the S2 Organ, the xeno spacecraft, the entire Second Branch-"
"Bullshit!" Misato shouted, ignoring the Section-2 drawing their guns on her as she closed the distance between herself and Gendo, who for a brief moment looked shocked that she was getting up in his face. "You wanted to risk bringing those things here-?"
"Katsuragi?" Kaji cut in, pointing at the other end of the facility.
Misato gasped and stepped back when she finally noticed Lilith just hanging there crucified on the far end of the chamber and the river of LCL flowing from its wounds. "I-is that an EVA?"
"An Angel, most likely," Kaji said.
"W-what?" Misato was at a complete loss. "But…why-?"
"The reason why a single Angel is not allowed to breach this sector – Terminal Dogma, Major," Gendo explained. "It was built to house what was discovered here in the Geofront, to prevent the Angels from initiating a Third Impact if they make contact."
Misato went pale as she was visibly shaken, "A-all this time we had a…a-?"
Kaji interjected, "You're not going to have us all killed for seeing this, right Commander?"
"Better you understand what's at stake here, Major," Gendo looked down at Shinji. "Shinji."
Shinji bristled upon being referred to by his name by someone he so thoroughly hated. "What?!"
"I have allowed more than enough leeway in how you conduct yourselves in your duties, but I've run out of patience with the both of you, and following the loss of the Second Branch so has the Committee." He strode past Shinji and Misato, each angrily refusing to look at him, "Third Child, one more instance of insubordination – that is, not following orders if don't understand the word, I will have you detained in the Geofront indefinitely in between sorties. Major, if you unable to control the pilots under your command than I'll have simply have you court-martialed and replaced." He then added as if it were an afterthought, "And you will not tell anymore about what you have seen here today, is that understood?"
His eyes closed, his head still bowed in shame Shinji extended a hand towards the ultrasound of his unborn sibling, wiping his throw-up away with his finger. "I hate you." Shinji finally let the tears fall. "You have no honor. You deserve to die."
Gendo accepted that at his answer. He didn't say anything at first like he was silently agreeing with Shinji.
"I know," he replied. Turning to the guard he ordered as he stepped out of Terminal Dogma, "Escort them back to trauma."
Why did you visit Kasumi, Tabris? Why did you risk exposing yourself?
Outside the Geofront at an unspecified location, Kaworu smiled as he stared up at the surrounding Monoliths floating in midair. He knew that Keel would contact him over something as trivial as visiting Shinji, the old men did prefer keeping things exactly to their timetable, especially over the kind of intimacies Shinji was supposed to receive. And they were bothered, to say the least, that he didn't want any of what their pet Angel had to offer, instead preferring Major Katsuragi attentions.
"Is a reason needed to go visit a friend, Chairman?"
Yet, you aren't his friend, Tabris, SEELE-02 pointed out.
You are nothing to him at all, SEELE-06 grounded out. He was supposed to be receptive to whatever crumbs of emotional, physical even, contact you dangled his way.
Ikari may have him finally under control with threats to his freedom, but for how long? SEELE-05 pondered. Kasumi's masters are still out there. They still have Adam, and we cannot proceed without it.
I'd prefer that this world would die rather than remain under alien domination, SEELE-09 said. We may have already failed if another otherworldly force does not seek Lilith's power and they don't bring Adam with them-
Which will give us a chance to reacquire Adam and proceed with the Scenario, SEELE-01 cried with resolve. Whoever is the head of STARKE, they are toying with us. They enjoy knowing we are bickering amongst ourselves as they believe they can dismantle everything we have achieved during our lifetimes, but we are better than that. A brief silence followed. And we will make sure STARKE realizes how much they have erred when they are at our mercy.
Humanity IS superior, after all! SEELE-02 declared. Not the head hunters, or the abominations that birth themselves through our corpses. Our bodies will be beyond their grasp-
"Begging your pardon, but I thought we were discussing me," Kaworu politely said.
You. You will focus on piloting EVA, nothing more, SEELE-01 commanded. Let Kasumi gorge himself on Katsuragi's nectar so long as it keeps him as part of the Scenario. By the time he realizes that he has helped elevate the humanity he desperately hates he will become one with it.
Wouldn't his hatred then taint the primordial soup? You didn't consider that, did you?
Kaworu mentally shook his head and chuckled.
The pilots were confined to the Geofront close to a week, partly so they could recover from their injuries but Shinji suspected that it was mostly because the Commander was still sore over seeing them butcher a clone of his bearer. Gendo didn't try any more attempts to 'control' Shinji, he just let him stew in anger over the crucified Angel and the photos of his unborn sibling, and it was enough to keep him quiet and almost silent for nearly six days. Asuka remained as miserable as ever as she adjusted to the dramatic shift in her depth perception. Rei on the other hand had been first to be released from the hospital, her arm in a cast and told by Ritsuko that she was not allowed to see the other pilots until they had recovered.
Once they were freed, however, Mana and Koji were confined to an apartment on the Geofront, the boy immediately questioned by Sub-Commander Fuyutsuki, and only Fuyutsuki, NERV having enough common sense to not give the warrior a reason to fight. Even without his cybernetics, all of which had been rendered mysteriously inoperable following Nevada, he was still considered dangerous.
Misato wasted no time driving Shinji, Rei and Asuka home, the redhead declining Misato's offer to stay at their apartment for the night. They didn't miss the dirty look she shot both Shinji and Misato, her eyepatch not lessening how peeved she looked, before she entered her apartment and slamming the door behind her. And the first thing Shinji and Misato did when they got home was simply collapse on the sofa together, both mentally and emotionally exhausted having spent a week apart and unable to cope with the horrific revelations forced upon them together. Rei simply retired to her room.
Misato wrapped her arms around Shinji's stomach as she spooned against him.
"S-sorry, Shinji," Misato loosened her hold on him and shifted back as much as the sofa allowed. "It's just…I missed you and-"
Shinji turned so that they were staring at one another, shaking his head and a small smile on his face, "Beloved."
"…what?" Misato asked quietly, nearly in disbelief.
"Kia'la. It means 'beloved'," Shinji explained. "It's a word used only to refer to your one mate. One that you're resolved to only mate with for the rest of your life." Shinji blushed lightly, "Its…uncommon since males prefer siring young with as many females as possible but, it still happens."
Misato just stared at him in seemingly dumbfounded shock. Shinji had pretty much confessed his love for her
"Misato…" he noticed that she was blushing a little.
"You know, no one's ever called me that before," Misato smiled. "No one's ever said I was their beloved or anything such as that."
"Not even Kaji?" Shinji asked.
"Especially Kaji," Misato grumbled. She looked at him, all serious now, "You realize what you're getting yourself into, right?" She softened up as she continued. "And not just because I'm a wreck of a human being-"
"So am I," Shinji countered instantly, looking determined. "We're both wrecks. And…I think we need one another more than ever."
Misato smiled teasingly at him. "Do you really mean it? You don't plan on 'siring' around besides me?"
Shinji shook his head, "No, I-" And he was interrupted by Misato rolling on top of him and kissing him deeply, feeling her tongue nearly wrap around his as they exchanged kisses. Which were promptly interrupted by the phone. Shinji sighed as Misato got off him to answer it, sitting up on the sofa expectantly for her to return. She did return, the phone in her hand and a worried look on her face.
"It's for you," Misato said. "It's the Com…your father."
Shinji scowled and accepted it. "…" He was silent.
Do you remember what tomorrow is, Shinji? Gendo asked.
"…no," Shinji answered.
The anniversary of your mother's passing. I didn't think you would forget that-
Shinji hung up. And he looked ready to burst into tears again. Taking the phone out of his hand, Misato said as embraced Shinji, pulling her face to her chest. "If…if you want to, there's…one thing I can do for you…"
Shinji pulled away from her, shaking his head.
Without another word, Shinji went off to his looking absolutely disheartened, leaving Misato alone in the living room as she watched him go. Suddenly, Misato was filled with self-loathing over what she had nearly asked Shinji if they wanted to…to…
Holding her hand in her head and groaned.
In his office Gendo put the phone down, feeling more than a little incensed that his son would just disregard the date of his wife's, his own mother's, passing. And Ritsuko couldn't keep that tired look of contempt off her face at the mention of the Commander's late wife, her hand subconsciously moving down toward her stomach. She quickly grasped her tablet with both hands and appeared impassive when Gendo focused on her.
"You were saying, Dr. Akagi?"
"We recovered the remains of Za Taka's cybernetics that were discarded from his body following the battle back at the Second Branch, but they have been rendered completely nonfunctioning," Ritsuko explained. "Upon examining the interior systems and mechanics they were completely burnt out, as if Za Taka has overused them to the point of meltdown-"
"Rendering them useless to us," Gendo finished out loud for her. "Fuyutsuki is still questioning the boy, particularly about this STARKE organization that appears to be based off world."
"About Za Ta…Kirishima and her brother, are we still going to keep them on as backup pilots?" Ritsuko asked. "I have no idea how the EVAs would react to them and I would like to put them both from synchronization tests as soon as possible."
"Granted," Gendo nodded. "The more leverage we have over the Third Child-"
Embittered, Ritsuko interjected, "Don't we already have enough?" She felt her womb, "I…I didn't think it we would have to resort to this." She shook her head, clearly having trouble trying to keep a straight face before the Commander. "Our own ch-"
Unmoved by the woman's plight Gendo just said, "You are dismissed, Dr. Akagi."
Ritsuko couldn't walk out of the Commander's office fast enough. The door closing behind her she looked ready to just drop to her knees from a mixture of sorrow, guilt and anger that was welling up within her.
Hearing Maya call out to her, however, she just resumed looking impassive in contrast to the relieved smile of her assistant as she approached her.
It was hours later when Shinji woke up, blinking the sleep out of his eyes when he lifted her head up off of the mattress in his room.
"…." He felt bad having blown Misato off, but he really needed to be alone. He woke up again to the sounds of someone knocking on the door Putting his pants back on and retying his dreads back together he stepped out of his room to see that Rei had already answered the door, herself still in a white shirt and panties.
"Gott…don't you have any decency at all, Wondergirl?"
The Boy Predator sighed and threw on a shirt before walking over to the doorway, to see an impatient redhead and her black eyepatch that was the thing to draw his attention. Asuka saw this and wasn't happy about it. "Great, I don't have to just deal with Wondergirl anymore."
Scratching the back of his head Shinji asked, "What do you want, Asuka?"
Pointing at Rei Asuka snapped, "Not in front of her." Before Shinji could voice his disdain, Rei took this as her cue to step back into the apartment, leaving both Shinji and Asuka alone. "Hmph…" Asuka snorted, "Obedient as ever."
Closing the door behind him Shinji frowned, "It's early in the morning, Asuka-"
"Yeah, and we've got one more day of leave on account of…" Asuka smiled, pointed at her eyepatch. "So, it's not like you've got better places to so, right Meathead?" Incensed she added, "I'm managing well, thanks for asking. Depth perception's pretty overrated these days, anyway."
Shinji rolled his eyes, "You would have appreciated me asking?"
Ignoring him, Asuka said, "I'm here to collect, Meathead."
"Remember when I said I'd save your life for defeating the Angel and you'd owe me one for doing it, well…" Asuka smirked nastily. "You're still alive so, judgement day."
"And you're gonna take me out on a date tomorrow," Asuka's smirk never left her face, especially how she was making Shinji feel uncomfortable with each passing second. "On your alien honor you're going to take me somewhere nice, and you're going to show me a good time." Shinji opened his mouth but Asuka put her finger to his lip, "Uh-uh…before you go mentioning your girlfriend, whoever the hell she may be, " she groused. "I think she won't miss you for one night."
Shinji narrowed his eyes, "And if I say no?"
Asuka got up close to him, staring up into his eyes and still smiling, "Honor, remember?"
"And then what?" Shinji asked.
Asuka shrugged, "I don't know. Guess we'll see how it goes, Meathead." She turned to leave, shooting a now pleasant smile over her shoulder at him along with a wink with her good eye, "Auf Wiedersehen."
Watching her go Shinji was at a loss. Scratching his head he frowned when he thought about what he should do next. Something to distract himself.
He clenched his hands into fists.
…if I must.
Another hour passed. Misato woke up. Appearing disheartened that the other side of her bed was empty she hesitantly sat up on her futon. The sheets falling from her naked body she threw on some clothes, stepped out of her room and went to check on Shinji. Opening his door he could that his bed was empty, save for a note lying on top. Curiously, she picked it up, and her eyes widened when she saw how broken Shinji's Japanese was, but she could still make it out, and what it said brought no small amount to relief about how he was dealing with revelations concerning his mother.
Gone see her. Will come back.
Misato's eyebrows raised in surprise.
She could only sigh.
The cemetery just near the outskirts of Tokyo-03 felt familiar to Shinji. Guess he must have come here when he was younger to pay his respects alongside his bearer, alongside Gendo most likely. Navigating the sea of grave markers he stopped right in front of…
1977 – 2004
"…this is the only time I'm visiting you."
Shinji noticed the crack on the gravestone and the faded green Yautja blood on the marble. Mother must have visited earlier, and the reunion hadn't been a happy one. He stepped up to the stone and knelt before it, tentatively reaching a hand towards it. He paused, closed his eyes and looked away with his lips pursed. Making a fist he lightly punched the headstone, refusing to even look at the headstone.
"I blame you for everything," Shinji said. "If I'd known you were behind everything I've suffered through on this rock I…I…" he shook his head. He gritted his teeth as he tried not to cry, ashamed he would say that to the woman who birthed him. "I don't care what your reasons were, you left me all alone."
"It wasn't for long, Curved Blade…Shinji." Shinji's opened his eyes when he heard her voice. He turned around to see Gaun decloak as she approached him, all dressed in her hunter armor and mesh. She took off her mask, letting him see tears running down her face, he sucked his breath in and closed his eyes as he felt tears pool in the corners of his eyes. "Do you hate me, Shinji?"
"W-why would I hate you, mother?" Shinji asked, wiping the tears with the back of his arm.
"That I forced my way into your life. ever started thinking all this time that you had simply been a replacement for Straight Blade," Gaun admitted. "Do you think you're-?" She gasped lightly when she felt him embrace her tightly, eyes widened. "You don't?"
Shinji shook her head, "I'm your son." He smiled, "I've always been your son."
Gaun swallowed as she looked like was not able to comprehend what he had said. She slowly returned the embrace, looking down at Curved Blade as she returned the smile.
"Yes. You are."
Kaji felt the hairs on his body stand on end when he heard the loud, echoing footsteps become louder as it cornered him in the alleyway. Shaking his head smirking he drew produced his pack of cigarettes and drew one into his mouth, lighting it up just as he turned around to face the elongated, muscled saurian head of Za Kuma, the brute towering above him as it approached him, fists clenching and unclenching as it's hot breath steamed out of its mouth as it opened his jaws, its tongue salivating at the sight of the human man before it.
Kaji smirked, "What took you so long?"
We come at our own pace,the response came from Za Kuma, but not spoken by him. You have questions?
"Plenty of them," Kaji blew out smoke. "NERV, SEELE, the Predators and the end of the world as we know it."
This world will not end. I won't allow it.
"Of course," Kaji nodded. "You're probably responsible for setting Shinji loose on the Predators in the first place."
It was necessary. ShinjiIkariwas weak. ShinjiIkariwas vulnerable. I needed someonebetter.
"Well, you got it."
Do you appreciate the situation you are currently standing in?
Kaji snorted, "Trust me, I'm aware of the oversized serial rapist right in front of me that's sizing me up." Za Kuma bristled at the mention of him, taking another step forward and reaching an oversized hand towards his face.
Hold, Za Kuma.
Kaji noticed Za Kuma staring down at his pack of cigarettes. He drew another and extended it towards the cyborg's lips where it caught it between its teeth. Kaji lit it up and Za Kuma proceeded to take a drag, exhaling the smoke out of its exhaust ports. Kaji lit his own cigarette and took a massive drag, treating it in case it was his last one if Za Kuma were suddenly ordered to kill him.
Are you paying attention, meat?
"So sorry to hear about that, Garber," Weyland spoke over the phone as he sat at his desk. "I'm sure she'll come around eventually. She visited you in the hospital so she doesn't hold that much against you." He smiled, "You'll be back to work soon, then? I've got another assignment, I'll get TRIDENT to send you the details." He paused. "And call your wife."
Putting the phone down he stared at his terminal screen, his smile becoming even wider to the point of near maliciousness as looked at the satellite footage designated TEL MEGIDDO, ISRAEL.Bringing up another window it displayed the world map and lines of data stream from NERV Second Branch and the data downloaded from its MAGI to the Weyland Corporation's Headquarters databanks in London, England, to NERV in Tokyo-03, Japan…and Israel.
"Found you, you old bastard," Weyland said to himself.
We should've known you'd lock yourself away here. You honestly think you're that holy you'd be forgiven your trespass? Judgement is the only thing that's reserved for you.
Not today. Not tomorrow. But soon enough.
Tal'Lasir was never one to enjoy a conquest as stipulated by the Clans operating out of the homeworld. He preferred the unconventional, the outrageous, and the ones that yielded the most rewards. That was the reason he turned the Sinister Eye clan of Bad Bloods away from merely just hunting stuck-up Yautja elitists into the biggest criminal organization within Yautja territory that it was today. Black market, weapons dealing, drugs, slavery and the occasional act of genocide in emptying out a planet on behalf of the Zaibatsu and their flesh farms. And now…
The power of a god!
The massive, terrifying looking aged Elder stared hungrily at the embryo in its secured case. Soon enough, the power of the Black Moon, complete dominion over reality and the fate of the galaxy itself, would be his. He thought Gamaru a mad man for just handing a fetus birthed from the Celestial Egg itself over to him over another mere job well done, but Tal'Lasir knew for sure that it yet another one of the Zaibatsu's designs in motion, and he figured he would be able to seize the power of the Angels themselves fast enough before STARKE would move in and wrest control themselves.
He growled. It wouldn't just be STARKE, Gamaru's little army of cybernetic sociopaths he would have to deal with, but also the Nameless Clan and their new ooman allies, one of them the little proug'nik responsible for killing the pups born from his sister. He had a feeling that, despite the fake Predator's youth and scrawny, frail ooman frame, he somehow wouldn't stand a chance against him. Something that didn't occur to Mal'Kafir and Gal'Vakir, his bullheaded nephew and niece.
That was where one of his latest 'purchases' came in.
Settling the case containing Adam down he left his personal chamber and headed towards the training grounds. He arrived to see two of the youngbloods of the clan stagger out of the room leaning on one another, all battered and bruised with one of the coughing up one of his fangs.
Sure enough stepping into the chamber he saw at least a dozen other Bad Bloods lying all about the training circle with all manner of nasty injuries, encircling the lone warrior with the cybernetic helm, blood dripping off his steel gauntlets. Tal'Lasir bellowed with authority and every Bad Blood present turned to him, knelt down and prostrated themselves before him.
"Za Sanadamushi! COME!"
Sweat rolling down its skin, Za Sanadamushi turned to face the Elder and walked right over towards Tal'Lasir, cuts, welt and bruises all over his bare chest, the netting around his legs torn and his loincloth hanging by a thred. He stepped right in front of Tal'Lasir, cracking his fists following his neck.
Za Sanadamushi suddenly smirked with anticipation.
"Who do you want me to kill?"
Unlike his creation Za Kuma, Gamaru was tall and more lithe-like, ten feet tall and encased in black armor that leaned towards saurian aesthetic, his helm resembling Evangelion Unit-01's head though more on the masculine side of the spectrum. Slouching on his chair in his massive darkened spherical chamber with a singular downlight shining down on him, Gamaru waved his hand through the display screens of his holographic terminal and switching it off, the words COMMUNIKATION ENDEDflashing just before the screen faded. He sat in contemplation; fist against the side of his head, pondering over the knowledge had just imparted to Ryoji Kaji, aka Progenitor #3235.
More downlights revealed a bridge over a chasm as Gamaru crossed it towards a door on the side of the chasm. Stepping through to reveal the biomechanical aesthetics of the hallway leading towards his personal cold storage sample chamber – a white cylindrical room with tubes running through the floor and ceiling, a mechanical handle located in the center of the room. Gamaru stepped over, reached down and liftedthe cryotank out of the floor and right up to his eye level.
Gamaru wiped the frost away from the glass, revealing the sole occupant in cryostasis: A seven-year-old boy encased in a black biomechanical bodysuit, numerous small tubing jutting out of his back and arms and identification coding imprinted on his forehead. The biomechanical colossus traced a finger around the shape of the boy's head.
"It's been a long time, Shinji,"Gamaru said softly. "You won't have to wait much longer. That day is coming, when we'll both be free of our torment." He clenched his hand, "For everything she's done to us, Ikari will pay. Curved Blade shall be our striking hand."
He cracked his wrist and opened his palm, generating a green holographic image of a gigantic, naked crucified masked being with six eyes. "Black Moon will cease to exist. The First Ones will be known as the true Engineers of human existence. And Lorenz, Rokubungi, Yui Ikari."
He lifted the fist not holding the cylinder up in the air, shaking it, clenching it to the point it trembled.
"They. Will. Burn."
End of Hakaisha
To Be Concluded in Bōkyaku
A/N: Yeah at this point I'm drawing from H.R. Giger collected works in setting up the villains for the next book.
Alright, here's the thing: I won't be continuing this for a long time. A very LONG time. Besides pressing issues in real life, such as getting over my aforementioned stay at the hospital, I want to work on other stories and I feel like I need to be as far away from anything EVA or Aliens/Predator as possible, otherwise I'm just going to keep suffering writer's fatigue and mess up writing SSJNYH somewhere, unless I already have then I don't want it to get any worse.
In the meantime, RealRemainder will still be adapting the first two stories into a doujinshi that you can read on deviantART and Smackjeeves – Lord of Star Demons it's called. And thanks to him for proofreading.
So, 2016 is nearly done and dusted and I must say it's been…different, to say the least.
See you all next year. ^_^