Neon Genesis Evangelion Fan Fiction ❯ Vignette ❯ Chapter 3

[ P - Pre-Teen ]
Joshua Trujillo


There had been method to her madness. There had been a reason
she had taken the interior room of the apartment. She didn't realize
that her madness would later come in handy. No windows. That
had been the reason. There were no windows in her room. Shinji's
room had windows, which meant that he had to deal with the
sunshine in the morning. Asuka had to deal with it too. There was
a window in her room too. Maybe it was a little bit of selfish evil,
but she dismissed that thought because Misato had chosen her own
room *long* before either Shinji or Asuka moved in.

Misato tried to roll over. She didn't get very far. There was
something behind...

Her eyes popped open and she sat up. Kaji's little black ponytail
stuck out from underneath the edge of the blanket and she could
see the rest of it rise and fall with his breath. Misato grabbed at her
forehead. She'd sat up too fast. The haze of the previous night still
muddled her memory. It was all so clear after four martinis...And
the two zombies...The little pink things in the test tubes...And then
there was the beer...Okay, maybe it hadn't been such a good idea.
Then they had come home afterward. They got into a fight about
something and then they made up. And they didn't stop making up
until...She couldn't remember. Misato sighed and rubbed at her
eyes. She glanced at the door and saw a shining sliver of light peak
into the room. She followed it along the floor. It climbed the far
wall and up her dresser. Misato sighed as the shaft of light glinted
silver off of her cross. It reminded her of what she was in NERV to
do. Responsibility. Her father.

Clamor arose from the livingroom and Misato's hangover decided
to make itself known. She grabbed her head with both hands and
moaned softly, trying to grab sympathy from the little dwarf in her
head who had the hammer. Kaji rolled over and smiled up at her.

"Good morning, sunshine," he said softly.

She scowled at him and looked around for her top.

"Shinji!" Asuka screamed from the other room, "You ARE an

Misato cringed and waited for the pounding to go-No. The
pounding wasn't in her head; it was Asuka as she stormed out of
the apartment. Even Kaji winced as the front door slammed close.
Misato pulled her shorts on and gave Kaji another scowl as she
opened the door to the hall. The bright light attacked all her senses
and told her that perhaps last night wasn't the *best* night to do
what she did.

"Oh," Shinji said softly, "Misato. You're awake."


"Yeah, it's ready."

Shinji smiled and returned to the kitchen. Misato smirked against
the pain. Her other responsibility. Her more *important*
responsibility. The children. Not just Shinji and Asuka, but Rei
too. It was a Saturday and the children were in for some more of
Ritsuko's tests. They weren't new or anything, but from what she
understood, they were the ones that they didn't get finished the
night before. The night...before...

Misato urped slightly as she made her way to the bathroom. She
closed the door and she lifted the lid. She prayed. And then she
prayed some more. And lo, the tile felt good as she rested there. It
never smelled nice the morning after, but a quick flick of the
handle removed that. She sat back up for a moment on the floor
where she had slid down and listened as the dwarf climbed out of
her ear and into the bowl.

"Oh, Mr. Kaji," Shinji said in the hallway, "I didn't know you were
here as well. Would you like breakfast?"

"Saynosaynosayno..." Misato muttered quietly. VERY quietly.

"No Shinji," and Misato cheered and prayed again, "I have to get to
a meeting out of town and I'm already late. Thanks anyway. Please
tell Misato, when she's ready to come out, that I should be back in
a couple days and I want to talk about what she said last night."


What she said? Misato couldn't remember what she *drank*, let
alone what she said. She climbed into the tub for a good scrub and
let the heat of the water strip the hangover from her battered soul.
The humidity helped as well. Out of town? What'd he have to go
out of town for? What meeting? She dried and made her way back
to her room.

"Misato?" Shinji called out, "I'm taking off now. Dr. Akagi has
more tests to run, but I'm gonna go see Touji and his sister after
that...Breakfast is on the table..."

"Okay," she tried to sound cheery, "I might go out with Ritsuko
after she's done today..."

She trailed like she normally did. That told Shinji, 'Don't worry
about dinner because you're fixing it.'. It also gave her carte
blanche to go out again. She heard the front door close behind
Shinji and she sighed. Once again, alone in her apartment. Well,
except for PenPen, who began to run water for his own bath. She
looked into the face in the mirror. Her cross glinted in the light that
already grew wide across the floor. It came from the window in
Shinji's room. Her light. She reached for the cross. Maybe her

The breakfast was good. Whenever Shinji cooked, it normally was.
She picked up her keys and headed out.

There wasn't a soul on the streets. Saturday. Morning. Late
morning. She drove past a playground. The slides were empty. The
swings only moved in sway with the breezes that came from Lake
Oshino. She sighed. This was no place to bring up children and
yet, in another world, another life, she would be considered not
much more than a child herself. Young and yet she and so many
others, some even younger than she, were all that stood between
humanity and oblivion. Misato shivered. She was beginning to
sound like the Commander. She made her way to headquarters and
tried to ignore the silence in the city. Seeing the black pyramid
rising out of the floor of the Geofront never ceased to fill her with
awe. The lake and the rest of the excavated lands looked so filled
with promise. Tokyo-3 built above. 'A fortress to stand against the
Angels. A refuge for all mankind.' That's what she'd told Shinji.
Or...something like it. And while she had no doubt that mankind
would benefit in some way from their stand against the Angels,
Misato didn't really care. She just wanted the destruction of the
things that killed her father. And maybe retribution for her own
sins while she was at it. Her mind wandered a bit, not lighting on
anything in particular, as she walked through the huge metal beast
of headquarters. She passed by the lunchroom and stopped.


The brown haired man turned and smiled as he swallowed a
mouthful of noodles. He looked embarrassed about something,
then Misato noticed what show was on.

"Major..." he coughed once, "Dr. Akagi wanted to run some
simulations for performance on the Magi later...and well...I don't
get cable..."

Misato looked to the television. An American program blared. An
audience screamed the name of the host in a chant. She didn't
recognize it immediately, but then the title of the show came on
and she knew. Reruns of Jerry Springer. She shook her head and

"You watch this stuff?"

"Yeah," Hyuuga smirked, "It makes me feel good about being who
I am."

"Whatever, Hyuuga...Hey, is Ritsuko done with the tests on the

"Um," he looked at his watch, "Should be."

Misato made her way from the cafeteria down into the bowels of
headquarters. It never ceased to amaze her the shear size of the
whole thing. Her little car was many thousands of dollars
(originally) and was just a little piece of metal and rubber and
some gas. Similar to Kaji, except for the metal bits. Misato
scowled. She didn't need to be thinking about him at work. Of
course, she didn't really know what time was the best to think
about him at all.

But what had she said last night?

She shook her head as the doors to the elevator opened.
Commander Gendo Ikari looked out at her from beneath his
glasses and Misato smiled a greeting at him. She wondered slightly
at the light sheen at his forehead, like he'd working out or
something. Well, that wasn't unheard of, right? There were
facilities in NERV for that...But, they were on the upper levels,
weren't they? He nodded as he passed. She sniffed slightly and
nodded her head. She had been right. It might even be less than
what she'd decided would be enough, but the scent was still there.
Misato smiled to herself as she pressed the button for the lower
floors. Down to Ritsuko's office.

She giggled to herself and smiled broadly as the doors closed. Her
plan had worked, at least in some part, so that was reason to
celebrate. You see, it wasn't that Shinji didn't know how to be
sociable. Certainly, he had more skills than Rei, but less so than
Asuka, and the redhead *did* tend to overpower occasionally. So
he needed an edge with the fairer sex and Kaji gave her the idea. It
wouldn't be what he said that girls'd remember him for, but the
other things. How cute he was or, more importantly, that hint of
something in the air that left them wanting more. He hadn't worn it
yet, as far as she knew, but it was only a matter of time. That was
one thing about Shinji. As far as Misato knew, he never kept
anything he didn't use. He didn't even have any photos that she
knew of, so she *knew* he'd use it. Eventually. Misato giggled
again. It was the perfect scent. Like father, like son. And you know
what? With Shinji, it was the dead honest truth.

The doors opened and Misato took a happy breath. That little
victory had shoved the problems from the previous night to a less
used corner of her skull as she knocked at Ritsuko's door.


Misato opened the door and found the blonde typing away at her
terminal. Ritsuko turned to her and raised her glasses to her

"Wow," she said as she picked up her coffee cup, "You look good
for someone who said what she said last night."

Misato stopped cold.

"You..." she swallowed audibly, "You heard what I said?"

"Misato," Ritsuko titched, "The whole *restaurant* heard what you

Misato folded her arms across her chest and thought for a moment.
It hadn't then been what she thought it was, or had it? She was so
confused about it.

"You don't remember what you said."

Misato thought for a moment more and grinned stupidly, a hand at
the back of her head.


Ritsuko sighed loudly and shook her head.

"Now," she said as she turned back to her monitor, "I didn't hear
what he asked because I was coming back from the restroom, but I
DID hear how you responded."

" did I say?"

It sounded worse than it really did. Misato's mind instantly went to
all the times, especially back at college, that Ritsuko had gone on a
bender and didn't remember the name of the guy she went home

"The answer's gonna cost ya'," Ritsuko smirked.

Misato laughed nervously and flopped into the chair next to her
blonde haired tormentor.

"Okay," she said finally, "What do you want me to do?"

Ritsuko opened her mouth to say something, but shut it and
laughed slightly.

"No drinking tonight, okay? Let me have the fun for one night..."

Misato chewed it over for a minute and extended her hand.


Ritsuko shook her hand and lowered her glasses back to her face.

"Okay," she said, "I'll hold you to it. Oh, and could you go to the
cafeteria and get Hyuuga out from in front of the tv. He spends
FAR too much time here..."

Moments later, Misato frowned as she closed the door to her
friend's office. She didn't understand why she'd said that. It
certainly sounded like an answer to something that Kaji might ask,
but she didn't think it was what it sounded like. Or something like
that. The little dwarf had somehow climbed back in her skull when
she wasn't looking. Time to put him to sleep with some Advil.
Hyuuga scurried off at word that Ritsuko knew he was there and
Misato couldn't help but chuckle. That woman was such a slave
driver and yet, she could be just as flighty as Misato. As for the
rest of the day, well, when she checked her own office, she found
her usual mound of paperwork as it began to pile up. Misato sighed
and began to sift through it. It never ended, though, with not so
many people in the city, the amount of damage complaints was
considerably less.

That depressed her. It was okay that the complaints were less, but
it was only because no one wanted to live in a city that was a target
for creatures that NERV could barely beat. She supposed that it
was the anticipation, the waiting, that could kill someone. The
Angels never gave any warning until they were quite near to
NERV and sometimes not until they were right on top of the city.
She'd read the papers in the beginning. She'd read how the cover
stories were being ignored and pictures of the Evas were already
leaking out. At this point, she didn't think it really mattered all that
much. The papers and the news stopped after most of the people of
the city left. After the last attack. Sure, there were those weirdoes
in the city that thought that they were somehow immune to Angel
attacks because they'd lived through a couple. And then there were
those that thought that the Angels were here to redeem them.

Misato frowned in disgust and anger. Those were the kinds of
people that she wished the Angels would *redeem*, instead of
hurting the children. She sighed and grabbed the bridge of her
nose. She got up from her desk and made her way back to the
cafeteria for a quick bite to eat and then back to her desk.
Paperwork and more paperwork. First, there came the first Angel.
Then there came the Evangelions. And nothing was heard for a
long while. Then it all happened at once. Shinji, the next Angel,

Why had she said that? What was the question? She shook her
head and knuckled down to the last bit of the paperwork before
quitting time. There was a knock at the door and Misato started.
She looked at the clock and blinked.

"Come in," she said absently.

"Look what might join us tonight," Ritsuko said as she opened the

"Hey there, gorgeous," Kaji said as he poked his head into the

Misato scowled, but it softened at the thought of the question that
still nagged.

"It's quittin' time already, huh?" she smiled slightly.

"Yeah...Come on, Misato," Ritsuko said as she hunted through her
purse, "If we get there before eight, we can get good seats for

"Yeah, and you just can't resist singing Divinyls, huh?" Misato

Ritsuko smiled shyly and turned from the doorway.

"Kaji, can you hang on a sec?" Misato asked as she rose from her
chair, "Ritsu, we'll meet you back at your office in a second,

"Don't keep me waiting, Misato..." Ritsuko warned as she walked

Misato turned to Kaji.

"No meeting out of town?"

"It got cancelled," he chuckled softly.

Misato sighed and took a deep breath, mustering her courage.

"I'm going to ask you something, Kaji," she said, her face stern, "I
want you to answer me honestly...What did you ask me last night?"

Kaji blinked a couple times.

"You don't remember, do you?" Kaji wanted to laugh, but Misato's
face told him to do otherwise.

Kaji sighed and ran a hand through his hair. He acted like he
couldn't meet her gaze, like it was too much for him to even get as
far as he did the previous night. Misato frowned and put her hands
on her hips.

"Misato...I can't tell you because you told me not to..." he said
softly, "You said for me not to ever bring it up again. So...I won't."

He watched her expression change to doubt. It was an obvious cop-
out on his part.


"Misato, please..." he sighed and turned back down the hall, "I
can't say it again...Especially with your answer..."

"Kaji, this isn't fair," she said sadly, "Please?"

He pulled at the sides of his mouth as he tried to think. It wasn't
working. He closed his eyes and sighed slightly, as if mustering his
own courage. He then turned back to her, bent to her ear quickly
and whispered it to her. He backed up and once again couldn't
meet her gaze. Kaji took a deep breath and chuckled nervously. He
turned again and began to walk back towards Ritsuko's office as
Misato began to sputter. He turned the corner, nodded his head and
smiled as he heard her shout behind him.

"What did I *mean* 'Not tonight'?!"