Neon Genesis Evangelion Fan Fiction ❯ Evangelion: Third Genesis ❯ Chapter 13

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]

Evangelion Third Genesis: Part Twelve

Standing there waiting out in the hallway Maya was visibly nervous in her uniform, checking to see if the collar was too tight. "How much longer?" she asked weakly.

Ritsuko smiled at her gently, "Relax, Maya. We're all friends here."

Maya looked down shyly, "I know, it's just..."

A hand on her shoulder, a smile from the blonde. "Misato hasn't got any surprises planned," Ritsuko said, "it's just going to be us, Rei, Asuka and a few of your better techs in there."

The door to the room opened and Asuka smiled, the borrowed military uniform fitting her neatly. "We're ready to go," the orange haired EVA pilot smiled.

Maya puffed out a breath, "Let's go."

Asuka held the door open as Maya and Ritsuko walked inside. Rei wore a blue dress over at one side, a few techs dressed in uniform nearby, while in the middle Misato stood. She was wearing her standard garb, her face lit up with a gentle smile. A small box was held in her hand, presumably carrying the new rank insignia.

"Maya Ibiki," Misato said crisply once Maya stood in front of her.

"Hai!" Maya jerked straight.

"You served well during the Angels crisis," Misato smiled, "and now, you've been laboring to rebuild the damaged EVAs. Thanks to you and your staff's efforts NERV has regained the ability to defend this city and the world."

"Ma'am," Maya was blushing furiously and only feeling the fond gaze of Ritsuko on her back kept her from bolting right out of the room.

"Because of that," Misato opened up the little box, "I have been authorized to promote you to the rank of captain, with all the responsibilities and privileges carried by that rank." She pinned the insignia to Maya's collar, then stepped back with a smile. "Congratulations," Misato said loudly, "Captain Maya Ibiki."

Maya saluted, face flaming. "Thank you, ma'am," she managed weakly.

Then all order broke down as Asuka stepped up to slap her on the back. Rei joined her to gently shake her hand, then the techs descended on her, whooping in pride over the promotion of someone that they regarded as one of their own.

From the room's other door a cart was pushed thought, bearing a large cake with the words 'Congratulations for your promotion!' written on it in red icing. A few candles were artistically placed on top, giving off a bright, cheerful light. At the others urging Maya bent forward, taking a deep breath to blow the candles all out.

"Just be glad I didn't cook it," Misato smiled at the still brightly blushing Maya, "or it would look good but be completely inedible."

"Here, you cut it," Ritsuko picked up the knife and gently pressed it into Maya's hands. Their fingers touched, and the two women stood there frozen, gazing into each other's eyes.

Asuka cleared her throat, and the two jerked apart, suddenly aware of the people standing in the room with them. "Uh, right," Maya cut slices of cake off with a shaking hand.

'They sure are cute together,' Misato noted, watching the way that Maya and Ritsuko stood together, both women seemingly happy just to have the other near them. She accepted a piece of cake from Ritsuko and had to smile to herself as Rei took her first bite of cake, the girl's eyes widening with happiness as she had some of the treat.

"Asuka," Rei turned to beam up at the still cakeless Asuka, "try some of this." She cut a fork full of cake off, bringing it to Asuka's lips.

She tried to get the cake off as delicately as possible, but Asuka's lips still brushed the metal of the fork. She suddenly remembered the Japanese custom of an indirect kiss and blushed, thinking of pressing her lips to Rei's. "It's good," she managed.

Rei looked up at her curiously, "Is something wrong? Your face is all red."

"I'm fine," Asuka answered, realizing she was blushing a bit harder.

The group of techs left pretty quickly after getting their pieces of cake, stopping only to congratulate Maya one more time before they left. The soft sounds of music started up, the meeting room's stereo system activated by a slightly smiling Misato.

Maya hesitated, then she looked up at Ritsuko. Mustering her courage she asked with a gentle smile, "Could I have this dance?"

"I'd love to," Ritsuko gently took the younger girl's hands in her own while letting Maya lead them to rhythm of the music.

Rei's hand slid into Asuka's without the taller girl realizing it, and she gently squeezed on Asuka's fingers. "Could we do that?" Rei asked softly.

Not letting herself think about it too much Asuka took Rei into her arms, swaying gently to the music. Echoing the others Rei leaned in to Asuka, her blue hair resting on Asuka's shoulder as the taller girl tentatively put her arm around her. "Is this all right?" Asuka asked softly.

"Hmm," Rei sighed happily.

Misato watched them, her own eyes dark with.. something. Not loss, exactly, but thinking of what might have been, if things had been just a bit different. Once the song ended she pushed off from where she was leaning up against the wall, "Ritsuko, Maya?"

"Yes?' Ritsuko asked, unconsciously keeping Maya's hand in hers.

Misato smiled, "You've both got the rest of the day off, and if I see either of you around here before your shifts start tomorrow, I'll be very displeased."

"Thank you, ma'am," Maya smiled happily.

"Just don't get too hung over," Misato smirked, "I want you to be a good example as the new commander of our technical division."

"I'll keep an eye on her," Ritsuko smiled, squeezing the younger woman's hand. "Well, if you don't want us around," she tugged Maya towards the door, "we'd better get going."

"Have a nice day, everybody," Maya waved as the two hurried out.

"That was so cute," Asuka shook her head with a smile.

"That they are," Misato agreed. She looked over at her two pilots, "I hate to bring this up, but the new versions of the plug suits are ready. Would you mind trying them on?"

Rei smiled, "Sure."

Asuka hesitated, thinking of the scars that she still carried. "All right," she made herself smile as Rei looked up at her entreatingly.

"Thanks," Misato directed it mostly to Asuka. She knew how difficult some of this must be for her, even after her return to the simulators. "Let's get going," she leads them out of the meeting room, down the hallway to an elevator.

The room they arrived in was a modified changing room, and when Asuka looked over at the two plug suits she frowned slightly at their odd, gray color. "They aren't individually colored?" she asked Misato.

"It's a specially made 'smart' fabric," Misato explained, "not only will it mold itself to your body, but it will also change colors based on whatever you input."

"Not bad," Asuka fingered the soft material, "but I'll stick with my red design."

"Could mine be blue?" Rei asked softly.

Asuka raised an eyebrow slightly, while Misato kept her expression perfectly blank. "I don't see why not," Misato managed to smile. She walked over to the door, and turned back to say, "I'll let you get changed."

As soon as the door shut, Rei slipped the blue dress over her head, folding it up carefully dressed only in her bra and panties. She reached back, her motion pushing her breasts forward and unsnapped the bra, releasing them.

With a loud gulp Asuka turned, stripping her own uniform off quickly. 'I was practically ogling her,' she blushed, setting her pants, shirt and jacket down in a pile. A soft touch on her back startled her, and she turned to meet Rei's gaze.

Rei gently traced a white mark on Asuka's arm, "Those are scars, aren't they?"

Asuka gulped, trying to steady her racing heart. "Yes, they are," she managed, "I got most of them while fighting the Angels."

"I wish I had been here, able to help you then," Rei said softly. She looked up to meet Asuka's eyes, "I like you, Asuka."

Asuka blinked, "Well, that's good."

"No," Rei shook her head firmly as she pressed her lips to the stunned Asuka's lips, "I think I love you."

Asuka gaped after her in honest surprise as the blue haired girl calmly walked away to pull a plug suit down from where they were both hanging, wondering if she had actually heard Rei say what she thought she had.

To be continued...