Neon Genesis Evangelion Fan Fiction ❯ The Song of a lost Angel ❯ Leviathan ( Chapter 2 )

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

Disclaimer: I own nothing except the concept of the Guardians of Dimensions, `Outerworld', Sakura, Iridia and Baran.
Notes: I am writing only the scenes where Shinji and/or Sakura appeared and also the scenes where others characters spoke about them or one of them.
Chap 2: Leviathan.
The two giants were facing each others.
One was Sachiel, Angel of Water and third angel send to the Earth-plane to continue the Trial of Man. Since the Second Impact, which marked the beginning of the Dead Sea Scrolls Prophecy, the Host of Heaven was dutifully following the Will of God.
The other was the Evangelion Unit One or EVA-01 piloted by Shinji and Sakura Ikari. The siblings were fraternal twins and have been forced into the giant war-machine by the manipulations of their father.
Or at least, that was the appearance. Sakura Ikari wasn't truly the twin sister of Shinji and the Fourth Children. In fact, she wasn't quite sure of what she was. She knew that her soul was the soul of an adult male named Baran that somehow found himself in the body of the fourteen years old girl. But `her' memories were a blend of `him' and `her'. Worse, for `him', he was in a dimension like an anime of `his' world, an anime `he' knew too well.
And they were facing an Angel.
The voice of Misato Katsuragi sounded inside the Entry Plug. “Are you ready, Shinji-kun, Sakura-Chan?”
Shinji actually gulped. “Ah, yes.”
Sakura also gulped but not for the same reason. Already, the fact that she managed to end into the cockpit of EVA-01, appeared as a very BAD idea. At the edge of her mind and perhaps her soul, she was sensing…music. “As ready as we can.”
Misato braced herself and did her duty. “Remove the final safety lock! Evangelion Unit One, lift off!”
The contraption holding the powerful Mecha unlocked and EVA-01 found herself free. Already, the two Ikari could feel the robot slightly lurching.
Sakura blinked. She could actually feel the movement through her own body and through the neural interface. She glanced to her twin and internally winced. The poor boy was too frightened to remark that on a conscious level. She put her hand on his to ease the tension.
Ritsuko Akagi leaned above the station of Maya Ibuki. “Shinji-kun, Sakura-Chan, think about only walking now.”
Shinji let his breath escaped his lung. The warm hand of his sister on his right one had eased a little his apprehension. `Walking ...'
EVA-01 took a step, the intense vibration on the ground breaking the windows of a phone cabin.
Ritsuko smiled with pride: The machine she helped to build was working. “It 's walking!”
Shinji squared his shoulders. He wasn't sure but he could have sworn that he felt his sister helping him alongside to make the robot walking. “Walking ...”
This time, however, EVA-01's left foot hit the umbilical cable and fell forwards to the dismay of Sakura, who had been too distracted by the music that was growing in volume in her perception, to properly compensate. “Damn it!”
Fortunately, the LCL and the configuration of the Entry Plug worked perfectly to absorb the shock of the fall.
Misato began to panic as the enemy took advantage of the fall. “Shinji-kun, Sakura-Chan, come on! Hurry up, stand up as soon as possible!”
Sakura shook her head. “WE'RE DOING OUR BEST!” The two siblings gasped as they saw the angel looming above them. Sakura perceived a significant change in the music she sensed. “Oh, shit!”
Sachiel had approached the EVA. The Angel didn't think on the same level of reality as humanity. He had a duty and a goal. Everything else was an obstacle to be…eliminated or surmounted. He lifted up EVA-01 by the head and grasped EVA's left arm tightly. Sachiel then used one of his celestial powers to boost significantly the strength of his arms and pulled apart.
In an odd stereophony, the twins grabbed their own left arm and keened under the pain of the EVA transmitted through the direct neural interface. Sakura had tried to do something but her own terror in front of the angel and the surprising amount of pain she felt had incapacitated her like her brother.
Misato tried to help their charges. Damn it! Why Ritsuko didn't tell them before of the bio-feedback. “Shinji-kun, Sakura-Chan, keep your head. It isn't your arm.”
Ritsuko turned to Maya. “How is EVA's protection system?”
The young woman shook her head. “The signal doesn't work.” For a reason or another, the automatic responses programmed in the interface didn't work.
Makoto Hyuga winced at what he could read on his monitor. “Field has not been developed!”
Ritsuko paled. Without an AT-field, EVA-01 was defenceless: The armour couldn't endure such punishment for long. “It won't do?!”
As the doctor feared, the armour of the left arm and the left arm itself finally broke under the formidable pressure. The acute pain hit the two children and Sakura actually screamed. She was dimly aware of the voice of Maya. “The left arm has been damaged!” `No, really? We didn't remark.' Her brain seemed fogged somehow.
Makoto's eyes widened as his situation panel became almost red. “The circuits have snapped.”
Sachiel lifted his adversary by the head and the energy lance of his left arm began to shine.
Misato felt powerless. “Shinji-kun, Sakura-Chan, dodge it!”
The two children could only gaze at the charging-up weapon and screamed as they felt the bio-feedback of the attack directly on their right eye.
Maya winced. “The front area of the head is cracked!”
Ritsuko shook her head. If the angel could break the armour of the left arm, then… “The armouring won't stand any more.”
The energy lance suddenly pierced through the helmet and the war-machine was projected and nailed to an adjacent building. The weapon retracted and a fountain of red blood flooded from the head wound. In the command room, all the situation monitors flashed the red “EMERGENCY”.
Shigeru Aoba reported. “Head damaged! Damages unidentified!”
Maya was beginning to freak. “The nerves for control are snapping one after another.”
Makoto gasped as his physiological monitor flat-lined on all the channels. “No response from both pilots!”
Misato screamed. “Shinji-kun! Sakura-Chan!”
Shinji and Sakura opened simultaneously their eyes. Blue eyes and intense green eyes searched across the white standard hospital room. They both looked to each other and remark that they were in a bed made of two standards beds put together. Sakura was holding the right hand of his brother with her left hand. The notion of the physical contact and the fact that they were together made them relax and sighed in relief. They returned to stare at the ceiling.
Shinji was relieved to find his sister at his awakening. He didn't want to lose her again. He blinked as he gazed on the ceiling. “An unknown ceiling…”
Sakura nodded. “And a little depressive…” She shrugged. “They could have painted it in pale blue…”
In a darkened and advanced-looking room, Keel Lorentz was finishing a session with four persons and Gendo Ikari. “That's all what it is.”
A member illuminated in green turned to Gendo. “But, Ikari-kun, NERV and EVA…you can use them in better ways, can't you?”
A bespectacled member lighted in yellow smirked. “The costs of the repairs for Unit Zero and Unit One will be the ruin of a country. We are fortunate that Unit One was lightly damaged in the battle.”
A member in red turned to Gendo. “I heard that you gave that toy to your two children. I wonder why you used the two at the same time.”
The last member in blue nodded. “Human, Time and Money… How much will be spent by you, your son and your daughter for your satisfaction?”
The red member looked from a report marked `Top secret, human complement project, top-level executive council, 17th interim report, human complement committee, project outlines for fiscal 2015, summary'. “Moreover, you have another job to do, don't you? Human Complement Project, this is what you must do at the top priority.”
The yellow member's eyes narrowed. “That's right. That project is the only hope under such hopeless circumstances, for us.”
Keel retook the control of the discussion. “Anyway, although the Angels came again, it can't be allowed that the project will be behind schedule. As for the budgets, we'll consider them.”
The green member hit the switch that cut off his holographic image. “Well, the committee will take over now.”
The yellow member nodded before he disappeared. “Ikari-kun, thanks.”
Keel stayed a moment. “Ikari, you can't go back.”
Gendo didn't move as he pondered upon the situation behind his crossed hands and his orange-tinted glasses. “I understand. The end for Humanity has come.”
Shinji and Sakura were watching silently the landscape through the widows outside their hospital room. The peculiar lighting of the Geo-Front was giving a strange aspect to the sight.
Sakura remembered that right now, the central committee for the human complement project should be in full session with the old bastard. She frowned. SEELE was a big problem. They regularly underestimated those they manipulated but they could bring a VERY big hammer to crush those troublesome.
She glanced to her brother and wondered why he stayed so silent. She blinked. Her `masculine' soul was asking this question. `Her' memory showed that the twins preferred this form of silent communication between them.
She looked down their hospital-issued pyjamas. “…Still, I wondered who undressed us.”
Shinji blinked and blushed. Both of them didn't or wouldn't remember what happened during the… He shook his head to chase this thought.
“…And I wonder where they put our clothes and my katana.” Shinji blinked again at that and turned, confused, to his twin.
Sakura smiled a little. “The sword is a legacy of the Ikari clan.” She gazed at the landscape, loosed her smile and softly continued. “Our mother should have been the one to present it to us.”
Shinji gasped. “Not father?”
Sakura shook her head. “No. He married into the clan. He has no right on the ancestral Daisho…” She smirked and her green eyes twinkled to her brother. “…and on our status as Samurai.”
A sound interrupted the twins and they turned to see a bed being pushed by a medical team in the corridor. Sakura smiled as she saw Rei in a better shape on the bed. The unique crimson eye blinked as the three children examined each others during the brief passing.
The twins looked to the departing bed and eerily spoke at the same time. “I've seen her before.” They blinked and stared to each other, once again speaking in unison. “You too?!”
The long black-haired girl remarked the chagrined face of her twin. “Hey, Shinji?” She grabbed his shoulder and smiled to him. “Relax. She's in better shape than before and you were instrumental in her continuous health.”
The boy gazed into the intense green eyes then turned away, still feeling guilty for the suffering of the mysterious blue-haired girl.
Misato and Ritsuko were going back to NERV in a truck.
The NERV Captain was glad to be in the interior of the vehicle. “I always think that an air conditioner is the greatest treasure of humanity! It's really a scientific success!”
Ritsuko smiled as she put down her phone. “Shinji-Kun and Sakura-Chan have recover consciousness.”
That was good news. “How are they?”
“No external wounds apart from some bruises for Sakura. However, they both seemed somewhat confused in their memory.”
Misato whirled to her friend, worried. “It cannot be… Is it a mental contamination?”
Ritsuko smiled at the tone. “I heard that you need not worry about it.”
Misato looked nonplussed. “So… Quite so. Because suddenly that happened…”
Ritsuko nodded. “It's no wonder. A severe burden was imposed on their cranial nerves.”
Misato smirked. “Mind you, it could be also affective.”
The two Ikari were waiting alone in an enormous waiting room. Shinji was examining his left arm, remembering vividly the intense pain and the sensation of the broken arm.
Sakura was frowning as she did the same. Contrary to her twin she had a circular bruise where the EVA had been wounded. Earlier, when she had taken a rapid shower before exiting their hospital room, she had found that she sported also a nice right black eye. She was almost sure that only Shinji had a very elevated rate of synchronisation. So why was she the one with the psychosomatic wounds?
She sighed. Depressing over it would only boost their level of angst. She turned to her twin. “Bored?”
Shinji jerked back in the reality. “Huh…? Hum… A little…?”
The medical staff had given them back their sacks and Sakura had on the spot verified the perfect state of her Katana. She brought up her portable computer. “A game of chess?”
Shinji nodded and the two siblings continued their silent bonding after their forced three years of separation.
Misato smiled when she entered the waiting room. The two children were calmly playing a game on a portable computer and seemed lost to the exterior world. There was only the two of them. She approached the twins and Shinji blinked as his attention was drawn to the young woman.
Sakura turned and smiled to the dark purple-haired woman. “Just in time, Misato.” She smiled mischievously to her brother. “I was about to be slaughtered in six moves.”
Shinji reddened a little and scratched his head in embarrassment.
The trio went to an elevator and waited. The doors opened and revealed Gendo. Sakura's green eyes narrowed and Shinji's blue eyes widened under the dark black gaze of their father.
Sakura pressed her lips into a thin line and spat. “What? Not even a `hello', `how are you', `thank you' or an apology? As you wish.” Her knuckles whitened on her clothed and secured sheathed sword and in a move like a snake, she hit the `Close Door' button, retracting her Katana before the doors closed. Shinji had turned away his head in contained anger and father and son had said nothing.
Sakura was trembling in barely restrained rage. She had almost drawn her Katana to cut off the head of the Supreme Bastard. She took a cleansing breath and blinked as she felt the hand of her brother taking hers. Shinji was still not looking to her or Misato.
Sakura turned to the grim-looking Misato. “Let's take another path, please.” She frowned internally. `Still, what the hell was he doing on our way? Poking at our misery or something else?'
As they took an escalator, their movements were surveyed on monitors by Kouzou Fuyutsuki and Ritsuko.
The blonde doctor seemed worried. “Is it OK that they live together?”
Fuyutsuki shrugged. “For Ikari and his children, it's natural to be without each other.”
Ritsuko nodded. “I see… You would have to force them…to live together…”
Later, the trio found themselves before a man as the floor showed a representation of the NERV headquarters.
Misato looked with dismay to the paper showing where the two children were lodged. For the whole residential section, they were… “Alone? In adjacent rooms?”
The man in charge nodded, holding the posture of THE one in charge. “Yes, their rooms are located in Block 6 over there.” He turned to the two children. “Any problems?”
Shinji was biting his lower lip. “No.”
Sakura snorted. “Yes! But I don't think you can do anything about it.” She shrugged and turned to her brother. “Don't worry. We'll make OUR arrangements.” `It will be a cold day in hell when I left you alone!'
Misato was still dismayed. “Are you satisfied with it, Shinji-kun, Sakura-Chan?”
The boy smiled to the young woman. “We prefer to be alone. Any places are the same.” His sister nodded.
But the NERV Captain could read many things into the gaze of the two children. She took her decision and pulled them to a public phone under the bewildered stare of the man who thought he was in charge. She placed several calls, the last one to Ritsuko.
Ritsuko frowned at what her friend was telling her. “What?!”
Misato rolled up her eyes. “As I said now, I've decided to take charge of Shinji-kun and Sakura-Chan. I've got the superior's agreement.” She smirked. “Don't worry. I won't have an affair with the boy...or the girl.”
Ritsuko yelled into her phone. “That goes without saying! What the hell are you thinking about!?”
Misato winced as she promptly pulled up the phone from her ear. “As I expected. She could never understand a joke.”
In the background, Sakura was softly giggling while her brother was slightly blushing.
Misato's blue Renault Alpine, still battered but temporally repaired with duct-tape, drove through a tunnel.
The purple speed-demon of the road turned to her rear passengers. “Well, tonight we're going to do flamboyantly, aren't you?”
Shinji blinked, looking a little worried to their new legal guardian. “What are you saying about?”
Misato smiled. “Of course, it's a welcome party for my two new lodgers!”
Sakura looked relieved and smiled in return. “Aaaah. Thank you.”
The trio stopped at one of the numerous convenience stores so common in Japan. The twins watched with dismay at the very interesting amount of instant foods selected by Misato. They looked to each other: It was the best example of the convenient but poor meals, not something very good at long term.
As they paid their groceries, they heard a very interesting conversation between two housewives.
“Are you also going to move?”
“I had never thought seriously that this city really became a battlefield.”
“My husband told me that our children and I should move for safety at least.”
“Move for safety… Even if this is the fortress city, we can't rely on anything at all.”
“Yesterday incident, the mere recollection of it makes me shudder.”
Shinji narrowed his eyes at hearing this. Once again he felt guilty. Sakura snorted and muttered under her breath something about `stupid blinded civilians', `no place was truly safe' and `should be grateful they're still alive'.
Misato was worried by what she saw and heard from her charges. Fortunately, she had an idea to brighten their minds.
She drove her car along the road to the top of a hill dominating the city. “Well, we will drop in some place on the way.”
Shinji looked up from the sack containing many cans of beer. “Where are we going?”
Misato giggled “It. Is. A. Good. Place.”
Sakura raised an eyebrow. “What surprises have you prepared again?”
They finally arrived on an observation platform and gazed upon the city under the evening sun. The cicadas were omnipresent. The twins felt strangely moved by the view.
Shinji felt sad by what he was seeing. “Somewhat…this is a lonesome city, isn't it?” A little like him and his sister. He sensed the silent nodding of his twin.
Misato looked at her watch and smiled. “The time has come.”
Under them, many alarms sounded in the city and powerful mechanisms were activated. The numerous buildings of the ceiling of the Geofront were slowly appearing
Shinji was awed. “Great! Buildings are growing!”
Sakura had known about this `little' feature of Tokyo-3, but seeing it in real… “Wow…!”
Misato nodded to their tones: She had managed to lift up their spirits. “This is the Fortress City for Intercept the Angels: 'Tokyo-3'… Our hometown…” She turned to the children. “…and the town which you protected.”
Sakura beamed. “I'm glad we did it.”
Sakura, clad in a kendoka outfit, is holding her Katana in a classic posture. With a fierce yell, she charges a training dummy and cut it in two with a diagonal slash. Shinji, kneeling in seiza, is applauding.
Gendo, in a Kendoka outfit, is looking with his patented Glare-of-Doom to a training dummy. He is also sporting a Katana. He charges silently and strikes in diagonal. His sword gets stuck in the dummy and he sweat-drops as he tries to pry the weapon from it. Shinji, who was sitting in seiza, is now rolling on the floor in laughter.
The trio arrived to the building where Misato lived. It was an eleven floors rectangular block with a little playground for children outside. They were also the only residents of the entire residential building.
The NERV Captain smiled as they arrived to her apartment's door. “I think your things have arrived here.”
She was right. Many boxes, printed with an international shipping logo, were neatly packed near the entrance. Sakura frowned. She never had much during her exile in England. Her pseudo-adoptive family and her boarding school must have sent everything they had of her. `Very charming of them. Couldn't wait to get ride of me, huh?'
The twins exchanged a lopsided smile. They roughly both had the same numbers of boxes.
Opening her door, Misato continued. “Really, I've also just moved to this town very recently.” She waved to the two Ikari. “Come in.”
Shinji and Sakura looked very vulnerable and once again spoke together. “Er-r-r-r… Ojamashimasu? (May I come in? Used when someone visit other's houses.)
Misato loose a little of her smile but pursued firmly. “Shinji-kun, Sakura-Chan, this is your house!”
Shinji and Sakura had difficulty to swallow and hesitantly crossed the entry, the ghost of a smile on their lips. “Ta…Tadaima.” (I...I'm back. Used whenever someone comes home.)
Misato beamed. “Okaerinasai.” (Welcome home! Used in answer to `Tadaima' by the person at home.) She found it cute their way of speaking together.
A true smile blossomed on the face of the twins. They both could feel the genuine welcoming of the young woman in their new `Home': Something that neither of them truly felt since an eternity.
They promptly lost their smile and two pairs of eyes widened when they saw the interior of the apartment. Sakura blinked. The `former-male-turned-young-girl had the bad habit to not really clean `his' studio but NOTHING could be compared to…THAT! Misato's apartment looked like the battlefield of World War III.
Misato's voice came from her bedroom. “Well, the room is a little untidy… Don't you mind that.”
There were empty cans of beer, whisky bottles and potato chips on the dinning table. Half-opened boxes clustered the floor with clothes for the winter and car magazines occupied the rare pieces of the floor still available. A mountain of plastic garbage sacks decorated a corner of the kitchen.
The twins looked to each other. “…a little…” Even their thoughts were the same. `She can't be serious? THAT! A LITTLE UNTIDY?!'
Misato's head reappeared from the depths of her lair. “Please, put the foods in the refrigerator.”
Shinji sweat-dropped. “Ah, yes.”
His sister shook her head. “I can't even imagine what we are going to find in it.”
Shinji was also apprehending what he could find in the big refrigerator. “Ice… Relishes… And only beers…” The young boy looked with dismay to the content. “What kind of life does she lead?”
Sakura palmed her face. “I also wonder how she can maintain her figure with such a diet.” Her brother looked to the other refrigerator and she nodded. “I almost feared what we are going to find in this one.” `Oh yes! The fridge for the penguin.' She frowned internally. `I wonder what it is in this altered reality.'
Shinji voiced louder his question to Misato. “Well, can we use the refrigerator over there…?”
Misato was changing her clothes. “Ah, it's OK. Perhaps, he is sleeping now.”
Shinji and Sakura blinked to each other. “Sleeping…?”
Very soon, the microwave oven was used to prepare the instant foods and the trio found themselves ready to eat at the newly cleaned dinning table.
Still cheerful, Misato raised her can of beer. “Itadakimasu!” (Literally `let's eat'.)
Sakura had found, by miracle, some soft drinks in the back of the fridge and the twins returned the salute. “Itadakimasu.”
Misato was clad in a t-shirt and blue-jeans short. She was also…without a bra. She then proceeded to demonstrated how to gulp an entire beer can of Yebisu. “Phaaaaaah Kwaaaaaah!! Oh my dear life, I just live for such a time!” She blinked to the siblings who were mesmerized by her demonstration. “Ah, don't you eat them? They are rather tasty, although they are instant foods.”
Shinji smiled a little. “No, but…I'm not used to such a meal.”
Sakura poked at her food. “Yes… It's been a long time since we ate together.”
Misato brought down hard her can and leaned with fierce eyes into the twins. “No! Don't be fussy, you two!”
Shinji and Sakura retreated down into their seats. The young woman was also offering them a good view of her cleavage. “Ah… no… ah, I didn't mean that.”
Sakura was sweating. Her healthy `adult male' soul was still sensible to such a display. “Yes… We really appreciate this.”
Misato changed suddenly from wrathful to mirthful. “Don't you think it's nice?” The twins blinked. “Having a meal with others.”
By reflexes, Sakura took Shinji's hand and the twins smiled to the young woman. “Ah…yes.”
As they finished the dinner, Misato brought up the next subject. “All right. Next, we'll decide on the Everyday Duties.” She smirked. “We'll use the fair method of Janken (Game of `paper, stone and scissors'.).”
Sakura crossed her arms. “Hu hu! Not that method! No way!”
Shinji blinked. “Why not?”
Misato nodded. “Yeah! Why not? Come on! It'll be fair and fun!”
The green-eyed girl empathically shook her head. “Absolutely not!” She turned to the young boy and the young woman. “Look! It's been three years since I have one of the delicious dinners of my brother. I'm not chancing that.” She looked to her twin. “What do you say? We come back to our routine for breakfasts and dinners and we share equally the other duties?” `Like this, we will not end poisoned by her cooking.'
Shinji scratched his head and looked to the repartition of the Everyday Duties. It was true that it's been a while since he didn't eat one of her famous breakfasts. But… “What do you say, Misato?” `Beside, I'm sure that we will have to do the biggest part of her work.'
Misato pouted, but after looking at the paper, she found it with very few appearance of her name. “Aaah! You are no fun, you two.” She shrugged. “Oh, all right. You win.” `Well, I just have to do a few garbage and bath cleaning duties.'
The twins nodded and smiled. “Yes.” Sakura internally sighed in relief. `Phew! Dodge the bullet.'
Misato cheerfully continued. “Well. Because this is your house from today, you can really make yourself at home here.”
Shinji had a lopsided smile. “A, a, yes.”
Sakura bowed. “Thank you, Miss Katsuragi.” `A home… A real home.'
Misato groaned and slapped her beer can on the table. “Hey! I said to call me Misato! And yes, yes, yes, yes… What a gloomy!” She reached for them and began to mess their hair. “You are teenagers, aren't you? Pull yourself together!”
The twins tried to escape the torture and once again spoke together. “Ah…yes.” Sakura then giggled as they had used once again the word `yes'.
Misato chuckled and smiled to the snickering girl and the sulking boy. “It's OK. Take a bath and wash all the unpleasant things away.
Shinji turned to his sister. “You first, of course.”
Sakura smiled. “Thank you, brother.”
The young girl gained the bathroom and began to shed her clothes. It was a difficult task because she was reddening like a tomato. The `male' soul had great difficulty to accept what `she' was seeing…and feeling. `Oh, great! I turned into a pervert!' She sighed and palmed her face. `I'm aroused by my own body.' She grumbled about `unfairness', `wish I was in Ranma world' and `how the hell I will deal with my first period'.
She glanced up to the drying frilly feminine underwears of Misato and smirked at the future embarrassment of her brother. She also felt uneasy. `Strange. I feel I forget something.'
She opened the door of the furo to a penguin with red hair and a portable heating unit. She blinked… It blinked… `Oh. Right. I have forgotten the penguin.'
The waterfowl shook himself of its excess water and warked to her with almost sentience eyes. A nervous twist manifested on the left eye of the young girl. She cocked her head. “Hello. Correct me if I'm wrong, but you're male, right?” She gently but firmly grabbed the penguin by the back of its portable heater unit and came back naked to the living room.
Shinji gasped and closed quickly his eyes when his sister came back completely nude with a… He blinked as he reopened his eyes and stared for a second. No, he wasn't dreaming: She held a penguin in her hand. He blushed like a tomato and closed his eyes again when he remarked that he was still looking at her.
Sakura spoke to her new guardian with an almost serene voice. “Misato?”
Misato blinked to the spectacle. “What's wrong?”
The young girl showed the bird she was holding. “What. Is. That?”
Misato grinned. “Oh, he? A new race: A hot water penguin. His name is Penpen. He is another lodger.”
Sakura blinked. “Ah.” She turned to the waterfowl. “Sorry, guy. But I thought, for one moment, that you were leering at me.” She lowered him on the floor and he scampered to his fridge. “No offence, I hope?”
Penpen answered with a single wark that could be interpreted in any ways and entered his personal unit.
Misato grabbed her beer can. “By the way…you'd better cover up the front. Your brother is having quite the eyeful.”
Sakura blinked and looked to Shinji who was still holding his hands over his eyes and was spluttering. She rolled her eyes. “Oh, give me a break, Shinji! We used to bathe together until three years ago.” She smirked to Misato. “Or perhaps, our dear captain is just jealous of my youthful and lush body…?”
She laughed and dodged back in the bathroom before Misato hit her with the toothpick jar. `The little minx!' “Oh, well, I was a little…too much, perhaps…” `Or maybe, she was reading me…'
Back in the furo, Sakura was having her nervous breakdown. She had managed to hold it back until now, but being alone and with the utter proof of her transformation had been too much. She was using a towel and the water of the bath to silence her deep sobs. She was in the world of Evangelion. `He' had been transformed by an unknown force or entity from an adult French male into an Asian female teenager. She was the fraternal twin of Shinji Ikari. `He' had been `cursed' with the memories of the body `he' currently inhabited and `she' wasn't even sure of what and who she was. But the worst thing was that she KNEW what was supposed to happen in the near future.
Later, Shinji took his bath after his sister. He had sensed something wrong with her when she called him, but his questions had been answered by a very small and sad smile and she had said not yet.
The young boy was also feeling the aftershock of everything that happened so far. He had found his long-lost sister after believing her dead for three years. He had seen the ultimate proof that he was nothing than a replaceable tool for his father. He had been forced to fight against something called an Angel aboard a giant robot with his sister. And now, he had been invited into the home of someone that could… `Misato Katsuragi… She isn't a bad person.'
He remembered her saying. `“Take a bath and wash all the unpleasant things away.”'
His blue eyes narrowed. `But for some, the bath may bring to mind more unpleasant things.' Images flashed in his memory with two peoples highlighted. `Father…' “And Rei Ayanami…”
At NERV headquarters, in a vast armoured room, an orange EVA was encased in bakelite with a Stop Signal Plug. The room had been almost entirely destroyed, probably by the EVA-00. In the damaged observation chamber, Ritsuko and Gendo were discussing.
The doctor was looking to the back of the bearded man. “How was Rei? This afternoon, did you go…to the hospital?”
Gendo didn't move, his hands in his pockets. “In 20 days, she will be able to move. I'll get the committee's agreement for making the frozen Unit Zero restart until then.”
Ritsuko sighed. “What a pain…they have…”
Gendo shrugged. “There are no other people who can move EVA. As long as they live, I let them do that.”
The gaze of the blonde woman darkened. “Whatever the children think…”
Gendo interrupted her. “What is your final analysis for the Third and Fourth Children.”
Ritsuko looked into her papers. “The tandem piloting and the dual synchronisation hold great promises so far: Better ratio, better tolerance of harmonics and curiously better bio-feedback. We still have to test Shinji and Sakura separately, but the MAGI system has been able to extrapolate a few things.”
Gendo turned a little to her. “No problems with that?”
Ritsuko shook her head. “None so far. Due to the physiological differences between male and female, Shinji should have a better rate of synchronisation and more raw power. Sakura should have a much lower rate of synchronisation, but a higher bio-feedback and a finer control. We have also…”
In a room marked `Shin-Chan and Sa-Chan', the two fraternal twins were trying to have rest. The two Ikari had taken a room for themselves without even needing to consult the other. Shinji had helped her sister to transfer a bed in their room and they had cleaned and tidied the chamber.
Shinji was listening to his SDAT player and Sakura was using her MP3 and looking to a paper she had `borrowed' in the kitchen. It was a notification of transfer for her and her brother to the Tokyo-3 junior high school. She had nothing against it, but as she had shown to Shinji, the actual date of the request predated their arrival to Tokyo-3 by a whole week.
Misato was taking a bath and was talking with Ritsuko with her cell-phone. “Yes. They had such a bitter experience. I'm afraid that they will not want to pilot again.”
Ritsuko actually smirked. “Well, maintenance of them is your job, isn't it?”
The young woman smiled. “I'm afraid. I don't know how to get along with them.”
Ritsuko chuckled. “Complaints yet? You declared theatrically that you would take charge of them, didn't you?”
Misato yelled before cutting the call. “Shut up!”
Misato sighed as she considered her own actions with the twins. `Then I regarded them as my tools. I'm as the same as Ritsuko. Although we defeated the Angel…' She looked up. “I don't feel happy.”
Shinji was looking to his ceiling. `This is an unknown ceiling, too. It's natural…because I don't know any places in this city.' He snorted and smirked a little. `Sakura is right. A little touch of pale blue would be better.'
He remembered Misato telling them. `“This is your house.”'
Shinji was feeling confused. `Why am I here?' He felt another touch of his loneliness and turned to the bed of his sister. He blinked.
Sakura was gazing to Shinji. The young boy stared to her right eye which still showed a bruise. In the darkness of their room, the intense green eyes were almost glowing like those of a cat.
The two children were progressively remembering their ordeal in a strange simultaneous way.
Sachiel nailed EVA-01 through the right eye with his energy lance. The human creation was projected back against a building. The weapon of the Angel of Water retracted and a red liquid like blood spouted out from the head wound. The EVA slumped down, defeated.
The main screen was flashing red with the emergency situation.
Shigeru grimly reported. “Head damaged! Damages unidentified!”
Maya was almost freaking. “Troubles with the mental activity!”
Misato whirled to her. “How is the situation?!”
Maya shook her head. “Synchrograph has reversed. Pulses are flowing backward!”
Ritsuko tried something. “Cut the circuits! Stop them!”
Maya was frustrated. “No way. The signal is refused. It can't be received!”
Misato gulped and leaned to Makoto. “How are Shinji-Kun and Sakura-Chan?”
Makoto paled. “No responses from the monitoring system. I can't say if they're still alive or dead!”
Shigeru had a completely red board on his situation monitor. “Unit One is totally silent.”
Ritsuko whirled to her friend. “Misato!”
Misato snarled. “So much for this time.” She barked her orders. “Stop the operation! The pilots' protection is the top priority. Eject the Plug by force!”
Maya slapped her keyboard in frustration. “Impossible. It is totally out of control.”
Misato's brown eyes widened in dismay. “What!”
Inside the darkened Entry Plug, the left hand of the girl grabbed the right hand of the boy and her own right hand grabbed the right butterfly handle. A right blue eye and a right green eye seemed to shine for an instant as a deep snarl escaped two throats.
The left eye of the EVA suddenly flashed with power. The protective armour of the jaw broke as EVA-01 opened her mouth in the same snarl as her pilots.
The main speaker of the control room sounded with an incredulous female voice. “EVA restarted!”
Maya turned to the main screen. “Impossible! It can't move!”
Misato looked with awe and fear. “It can't be…”
Ritsuko felt the same. “…Berserker.”
Like a wounded and furious Titan, EVA-01 roared to the heaven. She flexed her legs and jumped directly onto the third Angel. She seized Sachiel by his head and tried to rip it off. The Angel reacted and grabbed the EVA. Using again her legs, EVA-01 jumped back, breaking the grappling hold. Still in the air, she whirled around and land on three limbs like a giant feline. She faced Sachiel with a snarl.
On the command level of the control room, Fuyutsuki nodded. “We'll win.”
Still roaring in fury, EVA-01 charged her enemy who stood up. Inside the Entry Plug, a green eye blinked. The EVA broke her attack to stop abruptly before the Angel. She kicked a truck parked near her foot on Sachiel. A giant hexagonal orange and shield-like manifestation appeared and the truck exploded on contact.
Ritsuko was dismayed as the enemy used its greatest power. “An AT-field!”
Misato tightened her fists. “That won't do! As long as the Angel has an AT-field…”
Ritsuko grimly nodded. “The EVA can't touch the Angel.”
Inside the Plug, a blue eye and a green eye focused on their left arms. EVA-01 brought her left arm in front of her and a violet energy field manifested, healing the arm and restoring its armour instantly.
Shigeru shook his head, incredulous. “The left arm has been restored.”
Misato could only look at the miracle. “Incredible…”
EVA-01 threw her hands into the centre of the hexagonal manifestation as if she was trying to force open a double-door. A blue eye and a green eye narrowed in concentration.
Maya was using all the available external sensors since they no longer received anything from the EVA. “Unit One is also expanding an AT-field. It is countering the phase space.”
Ritsuko looked to the graph. “No, it's neutralizing it.”
In a final effort, EVA-01 shredded the AT-field of the enemy like paper.
Misato stared at the battle. “Destroying that AT-field so easily ...
Inside the Plug, a green eye widened as the girl perceived a change in the strange music she could sense from the Angel of Water. EVA-01 crossed her arms and focused her own AT-field. Sachiel fired with the particle beam from his eyes. The cross-like explosion was deflected harmlessly into the air by the orange hexagonal shield of the EVA.
Enraged, EVA-01 caught both the arms of the Angel with her left hand and delivered a vicious right cross to his head, damaging the particle emitters. She, then, twisted his wrists until they broke, shedding blue blood-like liquid. Holding up the bloodied stumps, EVA delivered a powerful kick and sent the Angel into a building. Inside the Plug, a green eye blinked as the girl seemed to remark the buildings around the EVA.
EVA-01 jumped high again and landed on Sachiel, almost burying him into the ground. She punched the protective bones around the red crystalline ball known as the `Koa'. With a roar, EVA pulled the bones apart, rupturing completely what served as the chest for Sachiel. A green eye turned to the left hand of the boy who pressed a trigger.
Shigeru blinked. “Progressive Knife engaged!”
Misato's eyes widened. She never told the children about the weapons systems of the EVA. “How?!”
The left shoulder-binder of the EVA opened, revealing a bowie-like knife. EVA-01 took the knife with her right hand and struck the red ball which broke apart.
Finally understanding what he had sensed in the Celestial Symphony of the Abomination fighting against him, Sachiel played his last card as his core ruptured. He suddenly hugged the EVA's head and changed his shape into a ball. He had a duty and a goal. His own Celestial Symphony, which represented him in the creation, shifted. The will of God will be done.
Misato almost screamed as she understood the manoeuvre of the enemy. “Is it going to blow itself up?”
Sachiel had put his ruptured core against the head of the EVA and released his hold on the material plane. The Koa reached critical mass and exploded. Inside the Plug, a blue eye and a green eye closed in concentration. The cross-like explosion annihilated a full block of Tokyo-3.
Misato gasped. “How is EVA…?”
EVA calmly walked out from the infernal crater resulting from the explosion, her left eye still blazing with barely restrained power. The entire crew of the control room gasped in fear as EVA-01 appeared without any damage apart from the head wound.
Ritsuko stared at the…monster. “That is EVA's…”
Misato was still paralyzed. “…true appearance…”
Gendo Ikari smirked behind his crossed hands. Everything was proceeding as he had planned.
Once out of the zone of the explosion, EVA-01 stopped and waited like a fighter ready to take on any other adversaries, her left eye striking fear into the heart of those looking at it.
Shigeru sighed in relief as his control board flashed orange then green. “The circuits have been connected.”
Shinji and Sakura appeared in the Entry Plug as the normal lights switched on, looking completely bewildered. They were still holding hands and Sakura was still clutching the right butterfly handle of the main seat.
Maya also sighed in relief as the internal sensors of the EVA were reconnected to the control room. “The system has been recovered. The graph is in the normal position.”
Makoto nodded. “The survival of the two pilots has been confirmed.”
Ritsuko turned to an operator. “Body Recovery Group, hurry up!”
Misato nodded. “Pilots' protection is still the top priority.”
Shinji and Sakura had been deeply shocked by their experiences aboard the Berserker Unit. Shinji was thinking nothing because he couldn't afford to think about the ordeal. His psyche couldn't handle it for now.
Sakura was paralyzed by a terror without name. The `male' soul was almost gibbering under the stranglehold of `his' fear. The very nature of the Berserker state of Unit One was a hot subject among the population of the Evangelion's fans. During the battle, `he' had been subjected to something `he' didn't dare to name. It was `she' who gathered the courage and the willpower: Shinji was her brother.
The internal screens of the Entry Plug reconnected just in time for the damaged armoured helmet of the EVA to fall on the ground.
The sound of the falling piece of armour brought back to reality the twins. They both turned to their right screen and stares to the true face of the EVA.
Instead of mechanisms and electronics, they discovered an organic bulbous head made of a brown flesh. Some wires implied the cybernetic nature of the EVA.
Sakura swallowed something extremely thick. She must say it. “It's…a living organism…”
Shinji gasped as the whispered words of his sister managed to connect all the points in his mind. She was right! It was no machine!
Before their fearful eyes, the ruined right eye of EVA-01 suddenly regenerated. The children blinked as a giant intense green eye stared to them. Sakura's eyes widened as she suddenly remarked the amazing similitude of this eye with her…own…
The iris of EVA-01 widened and revealed three secondary irises disposed in a triangle around the main one. Shinji and Sakura blinked at the same time as the EVA and screamed in terror.
The two Ikari found themselves back into their bedroom and still staring into the eyes of the other. They mutually turned away and gazed to the opposite wall.
Misato achieved to dry her hair after her bath. She turned to the door of the chamber of her lodgers. She had something important to do.
The voice of Misato reached to the two numb children. “Shinji-kun, Sakura-Chan, may I open the door?” They couldn't respond: Their minds were circling on what happened during the battle. “I must tell both of you something.” Misato looked to the two twins who were back to back in their respective beds. “You both did a praiseworthy thing. You both may keep your head high. Good night, Shinji-kun, Sakura-Chan.” She finished as she closed the door. “Courage.”
Sakura managed to close her eyes. The emotional and physical fatigue accumulated since the battle was finally catching to her. “Good night, brother. Love you.”
At those soft words, something broke into Shinji who closed his eyes and let sleep taking over. “Good night, sister.” He hesitated. “Love you too.”
Despite her fatigue, sleep still eluded the long black-haired girl. She let her music soothing her frayed nerves. Two names were whirling inside her head. One, `she' had head during the battle. The other, `he' had discovered during the battle. She reopened her eyes and softly whispered them. “Sachiel… Leviathan…”
Shinji and Sakura, who have started a new life apparently obediently to the situations, cannot make new friends. But that they are pilots of EVA make them popular. The next is `The Flaming Sword'. Next time, of course, I'll give you a good service!
Notes: Hope you found this chapter as mysterious as the original episode. I feel rather proud of my new character.
The concept of the Celestial Symphony came from the RPG “In nomine Satani” and has been exploited in the fan-fiction “Neon Exodus Evangelion”. I have, of course, heavily modified it.
I have taken care not to make Sakura a powerful character. She is full of psychological problems and many more. Her main advantage and weakness is, of course, her knowledge of the anime. This has been explored rather heavily by many authors, so I will not concentrate on it.
It's the little details outside that will make her an angst and dramatic character, ideal for Evangelion.
Read and review, please. Thank you.