Shinji and his two friends, Toji and Kensuke walked towards their school, having put the incident of yesterday behind them. The interest of topic was the new pilot for NERV, the Second Child, whom Kensuke and Toji found somewhat appalling, attitude-wise.
"I swear, if it weren't for you and Ranko, I think she would have been really overbearing," Toji deduced. "I haven't been slapped by a girl at my age."
"How about the captain of the swimming team for leering at her?" Kensuke pointed.
"Okay, okay. I haven't been slapped by a girl for something I didn't deserve," Toji corrected himself. He then looked at Shinji. "Plus, she's so full of herself. I heard the conversations you two had when you were piloting her EVA… I'm just surprised you weren't lashing out on her…"
"We were in the midst of battle," Shinji replied easily. "It would be somewhat detrimental if we just fought while we were being thrashed around by a fish-Angel."
"You're the man, Shinji," Toji shook his head. "If it was me, I would have been shouting my head off at her."
The boy just smiled at his friend. "I had training, Toji. First thing uncle Ranma taught me was half the battle was the state of your mind and emotions. Auntie Kasumi's sword-style demands a very even state of mind. I'm sure you'd be the same, if not better than me if you had been trained as well."
Toji rolled his eyes. He knew Shinji was just trying to raise his spirit, and appreciated it. Besides, nothing what Shinji said was wrong.
"Well… I'm just glad we don't have to see her again," Kensuke sighed. "I mean, she's got a killer bod, but once she opens her mouth as she looks at you… whew! Get out of the way."
"You know what would be funny?" Shinji smiled. "She'd actually enroll here. And worst yet, she'd be in our class."
"SHINJI!" Toji suddenly shouted, surprising the people around them as they spotted him put his hands on Shinji's shoulders, and began to shake. "Quick! Take it back! Take it back damn it!"
"Its too late," Kensuke sighed as his own shoulders slumped. "He said it. He actually said it. Let's just hope it doesn't jinx us."
"You guys are too jumpy," Shinji laughed. "I heard from Misato that Sohryu-san had already finished her studies and is a University graduate."
"For real?" Kensuke blinked, quite surprised. Toji also looked taken aback by that news, and the two boys had to smile.
That was, until Asuka Langley-Sohryu suddenly entered their classroom, and introduced herself. Toji and Kensuke immediately glared at Shinji, who gave them an apologetic smile and a shrug of his shoulders.
"Oh yeah, you know what would be funny?" Toji began, his sarcasm mixed with anger and annoyance. "If the red devil comes and lives with you. That would be really funny."
At NERV, Misato blinked as she spotted paperwork on her desk stating that Asuka Langley-Sohryu was now going to live in her apartment.
Evangelion: Heart of a Warrior
1:8 – Scientific Curiosity
Ritsuko watched the screen of her computer without any outward emotion. She had worn spectacles, which reflected the video she was watching. She had downloaded it from a blog site called 'EVAFan4EVAH', a young correspondent, aged eighteen, that knew more than he should.
It was obviously the Aida boy's blog site.
The video she was watching though didn't have much Evangelion action. The battle took mostly at the ocean, with some very interesting data taken from the double synchronization of Shinji and Asuka with Unit-02. Once more, LCL oxygen levels had dropped rather significantly, and inside the entry plug, an odd but familiar energy signature appeared, though instead of expanding outwards, it just stayed there, maintained for the whole duration of the last minutes of battle.
No, what held Ritsuko's interest in video was Ranko and Kima's little light show. They had produced an energy ball that penetrated the Angel's core, and shattering it almost completely, yet kept everything else intact. In a week, NERV will finally get their second nearly intact carcass of the fallen Angel that had sunk on the sea. Luckily, it wasn't sunk deep enough that made the recovery impossible.
She sighed once more, and rubbed her forehead with her hand. The video didn't have any way to measure how much energy was used, and she was really antsy to get those results. It was Misato's fault… her selfish and perverted streak. Not only did she just use the boy sexually, but now she wasn't lending him to her.
She wanted to do so many things to him… strength test, speed tests, endurance tests. Oh yes… endurance test… she couldn't wait to stride his…
Ritsuko stopped herself there, and then snapped herself awake. She began to chuckle darkly. She almost fell at the boy's trap. He was trying to seduce her… what did that boy think of her? An idiot? No, no… one Ikari was already trouble for her, there was no way she was going to let another one mess her up even further.
"You think you're going to get your way with me, boy?" she growled darkly, chuckling even louder. "You will not succeed! You will not pass! You will not-"
"Rits… you need help."
The faux-blonde fell off her chair when she realized someone had entered her office while she was monologue-ing. Turning around, she saw Misato half-amused, half-angry at her.
"Damn it Misato!" Ritsuko shouted. "Don't you know how to knock!?"
"I did. Thrice," Misato answered with a grin. "Who were you thinking about? A young boy, Ritsuko? Surely I heard you correct when you said you wouldn't let some boy get his way with you?"
"Don't be silly, Misato," Ritsuko replied calmly, her eyes hard as steel. "I'm not like you, after all."
"And what the hell is that supposed to mean?" Misato grew angry, looking at Ritsuko balefully.
"Don't play innocent Misato."
"Wha… you… you know what, never mind," Misato growled, and slammed a paper at Ritsuko's desk. "Explain this!"
"What?" Ritsuko looked towards the paper. "It's a residence transferal paper for the Second Child."
"To my place, yeah, I know," Misato pointed towards the bottom. "See that signature? That's yours. You transferred her to my apartment."
"Are you angry I'm upsetting your little love-love suite?" the faux-blonde asked with a slight smirk.
"Har har," Misato laughed sarcastically. "I'm just upset you didn't even tell me. Does Asuka even want to live with me and Shinji?"
"She'll like it better than the dormitory here at NERV," Ritsuko replied, shrugging.
Misato sighed. "I don't know if I'm ready to take care of another teenager… I mean, Shinji's special. But Asuka… she's… well, she's different from him."
"True… hopefully it'll teach you to handle more responsibility. I mean, Misato, aren't you ashamed that a kid half your age is taking care of your needs?"
"Not really," Misato answered, unabashed. "It's because he's so good at it."
Good at it, eh? No, no, Ritsuko shook her head, trying to get those thoughts out of her head. Looking at Misato, she then asked her, "When are you going to lend him to me?"
"Are you still on about that?" Misato asked, putting her arms on her hips. "Ritsuko… I know being cooped up in here makes women lonely but you really ought to find someone more of your age."
"Speak for yourself," Ritsuko replied with a miff. "I hear Kaji's staying around."
"Oh Kami, don't remind me… frigging coward," Misato growled. She then looked at the faux-blonde and nodded, "Fine. I'll ask him."
"Alright," Ritsuko accepted that. "By the way, you may want to go home. I asked Section-Eight to help move Asuka's stuff to your apartment. You may want to let them in."
"I didn't even agree on letting her stay yet," Misato frowned, but nodded as she left the office. She wondered how she was going to break this to Shinji?
"What a freakazoid…" Asuka muttered, probably the sixth time, Shinji guessed.
Asuka was talking about Rei of course. Earlier, during lunch time, the Second Child finally met the First Child sitting in a very isolated area away from crowded areas, eating a bento box made by Shinji. She had introduced herself as the Second Child, and then proceeded to offer her hand to Rei in friendship. Rei, being Rei, just shot her down with these words:
"If I'm ordered to, I will."
Toji and Kensuke got a laugh out of that one. They were late for the next class, and were found in the bathroom, laughing up a storm. Of course, right now, when Asuka just went along with them as they left school, they were still as statue, though they kept chuckling every time Asuka would say 'freakazoid'.
"And why are you two stooges following?" Asuka suddenly asked, the chuckles getting to her.
"We usually go with Shinji," Kensuke shrugged.
"Why? You two are his followers? What was that name they call you at school, Ikari? Tokyo-3 Swordmaster?"
"Its Tokyo-3 Samurai," Kensuke corrected, a bit annoyed that Asuka mistook the name he had spread.
"Whatever," Asuka said dismissively. "So?"
"Actually, we usually hit the arcade after school," Toji answered, which was an honest reply. "We're just going to pick up Ranko and see if she'd like to join."
"Ranko?" Asuka blinked. "Are you guys stupid? What kind of girl would want to play a bunch of stupid video games with a bunch of perverts like you?"
"Why are you following us, then, Sohryu-san?" Shinji intervened when he sensed Toji was about to reply unkindly.
"Yeah, why are you following us?" Kensuke asked.
Asuka just smiled. "You'll see."
The mystery of Asuka's trip with them came to light when they finally arrived at Misato's apartment, and it was open, revealing the apartment that was suddenly filled with boxes. Toji and Kensuke looked at the site with a curious gaze, while Asuka watched Shinji's reaction.
The boy looked absolutely shocked.
Asuka smirked a bit. The boy must have caught on… yes! Asuka Langley-Sohryu was moving in. Did the boy think she was taking his place? That he would have moved out? It must have went to his mind, because that face was just absolutely priceless. Looks like the oh-so-perfect Third Child isn't so perfect at all!
"Kami-sama! What a mess! I just cleaned this apartment three days ago!" Shinji shouted, making Asuka suddenly fall down the floor.
"That's it!?" Asuka shouted as she stood up.
"That's it… what?" the boy asked, raising an eyebrow at her.
Asuka shook her fist. No, she thought as she forced herself to calm down. The boy was obviously trying to infuriate her, but she wouldn't give him the satisfaction. So he wants to play ignorant eh? Then it was time to lay those cards on the table.
"Third Child, you've been passed for the newer model," Asuka pointed at herself. "I'm now moving in here."
Shinji paused, and then looked at Toji, who raised his arms.
"Hey, I didn't know man!" he stated.
"I think you just convinced me not to start my sentences with 'You know what would be funny…'," Shinji replied solemnly. "Unless I want them to happen of course."
"What are you morons talking about?" Asuka demanded.
"Irony," Kensuke replied with a slight smile.
Entering the now cramped apartment, the group finally spotted Misato, Ranko and Kima in the kitchen.
"Oh, you're back," Misato stated with a sigh. She looked at Shinji, who looked slightly put-off. "I guess you know eh?"
"Sohryu-san is moving in, yes," Shinji replied neutrally, though now his eyes went to the door, where even in the corridor, he could see stacks of boxes lined there. "She was also hinting I'm to move out."
"Like hell you are!" Misato suddenly declared, surprising almost everyone in the room with the vehemence at her voice. Catching herself, her face flushed, and then spoke in her normal tone, "I mean… she's just pulling your leg. It was jumped on me, Shinji, so don't get mad, okay?"
"I know she was pulling my leg, and I am not mad," Shinji replied with a slight smile. "Just annoyed I have to clear the whole mess again, and clean up again. Our little haven was so clean just yesterday…" and he sighed. "I have to start now if I want to leave later..."
"Wait, Shinji, you don't have to…" but she didn't finish as Shinji left the kitchen, shutting the door behind him, leaving his classmates, friends-slash-adoptive sister and guardian in the kitchen. Later, they heard the boy speak, in his usually calm if not cheery voice:
"Hiten Mitsurugi Ryu, Kasumi Style… ultimate 'Just Moved In' organizer!"
"Oh, he's using that?" Ranko was the first to speak, and drank her tea. "Guess he should be done in about five, four, three, two, one…"
The kitchen door slid open, revealing Shinji in an apron over his clothes, somewhat dusty, and with a feather duster in his hand.
"All done," he declared with a smile.
"Right on time," Ranko clapped her hands.
Misato, Asuka, Toji and Kensuke blinked, and then slowly looked towards the hall. Just a few seconds ago, it was lined up with boxes that cramped the walking area. Now… nothing. The boxes were gone. In awe and disbelief, they began to move out of the kitchen, and saw that it wasn't the hallway that was clean… the whole apartment was spotless once more, without a trace of cardboard around.
Kima was the only one, other than Ranko, that acted like everything was normal.
"Alright, Third Child…" Asuka started, her face of disbelief turned to one of anger. "Where the hell did you throw my boxes?"
"Throw?" Shinji asked, looking innocent.
"Don't give me that!" the Second Child growled. "There is no way you could have cleared and organized my boxes fast! You must have thrown it all outside or something!"
"Heh… this is Shinji's specialty, other than his sword skills that is," Ranko intervened, smiling. "My mom's a neat-freak, and she uses her speed training to do cleaning and organizing around the house. She taught Shinji everything he knows."
"Bull," Asuka muttered.
"Most of your stuff has been unpacked at your room, Sohryu-san," Shinji pointed towards the guest room. "Hope you don't mind me putting most of your least worn-looking clothes in the closet. I left your delicates in its boxes. You can arrange those by yourself."
Asuka sneered, looking at Shinji, doubt still on her face. Forcing herself towards the guest room, she had expected all her boxes to be cramped in the smaller room… but when she opened it, the whole room miraculously became rather spacious, re-arranged in a way that maximized its spaces, with an extra steel shelf that held some of her boxes, neatly stacked, and some of her clothes.
She also had a desk, and her bed was made as well. The room looked good… great, even.
"Behold, the power of Shinji!" Ranko grinned.
"Impossible… it's impossible…" Asuka just chanted.
"Heh… impossible is something you'll keep seeing quite a lot these days," Misato muttered as she sank another can of beer, shaking her head. She too found the whole spectacle just out there, but then again, when you witness two young women defeat an Angel using an energy ball with their hands, the level of improbability you take in pretty much expands to a level that something as a super quick one-man organizing event was just a regular day at work.
Speaking of work…
"Hey, Shin-kun," Misato called. "You busy today?"
Ritsuko should have been smiling when Misato returned with Shinji… except she had companions. Ranko and Kima, wearing the very rarely worn 'NERV Visitor' Badges (only those of military background, and higher ranking at that wear those) in their shirts. Misato had that apologetic smile she usually wore when she had messed up. Makoto would say that smile was highly amusing, and somewhat funny.
If so, Ritsuko's expression stated so clearly that she didn't get the joke.
"What. The. Hell!?"
"I was just going to bring Shin-kun, I swear!" Misato declared. "But, when I told him you wanted with him, they insisted coming along."
"You're being controlled by a bunch of kids, Misato!" the faux-blonde muttered, still angry.
"Actually, Misato wanted to help your research with Ki," Shinji defended his guardian with a slight smile. "In all honesty… big sis and Kima are one of the forefronts of Ki usage. Even uncle Ranma thinks they'd surpass him and uncle Ryouga, Kima's father, in Ki usage and adaptation."
"Yup," Ranko declared confidently. "I have created fifty variations of my Moko Takabisha."
Kima just snorted. "You don't even use more than ten variations."
"Hey, not the point, Lost Girl!" Ranko replied. "You're just mad because you only created thirty variations of your Shi Shi Hokodan. And most of them are more useless than mines!"
"What! Take that back, you…!"
"Kima! Ranko!" Shinji declared suddenly, making the two young women blink, and look at him. "Please save it for Closet Hentai here."
Ritsuko just sighed, her palm over her face, while her other hand was squeezing tightly to a fist so hard that a little more force, she would have drawn blood.
"Come this way… please," she whispered.
Ritsuko led them to a rather spacious room, all filled with various machinery. Shinji could guess what some would be used for, but others were looking pretty 'out there'. On one corner of the room was a large console surrounded by a protective shield of glass and metal, with thick wires all connecting to the different machines.
"Wow…" Misato declared as she looked around. "Isn't this the Unit-00 reactivation room?"
"Yeah, actually," Ritsuko muttered as the two adults began to walk towards the console. "The equipment here were mostly unused and I tweaked them a bit to help in our little study."
"Well, from what I read, this bio-energy, or Ki as they call it, enhances a person's strength, endurance and speed. Most of the equipment here will help me measure those facets. It was supposed to be for Shinji only… but… oh well."
Misato spotted something in her eye. Pointing towards that machine, she asked her friend, "That machine… what is it for?"
The machine in question looked like a revolving metal bed with restraints for the arms and hands.
"That measures endurance," Ritsuko replied easily.
"It looks like that old torture device of Section-Two that sends out electric volts in a person… wasn't that decommissioned by the UN?" Misato asked.
"It measures endurance," Ritsuko repeated, somewhat more thickly this time. Then, she looked at Shinji and the others. "Let us start, please, people. Shinji, please go to that machine please."
Shinji, Kima and Ranko both approached the machine that Ritsuko was pointing. It looked like a metal plate wall with a cushion, with a small red square in the center.
"Punch the center, please. As hard as you can."
"Sure," Shinji declared, and immediately hit the pad with his fist.
Behind the console, Ritsuko blinked suddenly as a number came up. Misato also looked a bit dazed.
"Is… is that pounds per square inch?" she asked.
"Yes…" Ritsuko replied, her jaw agape. The numbers were impossible, especially with Shinji's build and age. And to make it worse, Ranko declared with a rather confident voice:
"What kind of punch was that?" the red-head declared. "You didn't even put your back to it!"
"Sorry… I'm more used to my sword," Shinji then looked at where the adults were. "Hey, can I attack with my sword? It may get better results…"
"Um… sure, I guess…"
Shinji smiled, and took a stance, his legs spread with his right hand going for the hilt of his katana. Taking a deep breathe, the boy then suddenly charged in, leading with his right side. Stepping on his right foot, Shinji unsheathed his sword, and struck the red square with a blinding slash. Ritsuko and Misato looked at the numbers on their console, and just blinked.
"That was three… no, wait, four times stronger than his punch," the faux-blonde muttered.
Ranko still didn't look impressed. "Just a regular battoujutsu? Didn't you develop one with a slight spinning variation to add more force?"
"Well, yeah, but it's not that accurate," Shinji replied with a slight blush.
"Yeah, well, stand back," Ranko declared as she began to pop her knuckles. "RAH!"
Ranko twisted her body as she punched the machine, which shuddered at her strike. Ritsuko and Misato behind the consoles just looked thoughtful, as they began to record the data.
"How was that?" the red-head asked.
"Um… good," Ritsuko muttered.
"Kami-sama… they are monsters…" Misato whispered beside his friend.
"Shhh!" the faux blonde hushed her. "Don't get them mad at us!"
Then Kima came up next. Unlike Ranko though, she didn't do anything fancy. She just hit the center with a punch much like Shinji did, though if one looked closely, there was a slight twist with her wrist and shoulders. When her fist hit, the machine flew away, ripping out of its base like it was made of aluminum foil.
"Kima!" Ranko shouted suddenly. "You put your full power in that, didn't you?"
"I thought that was what we were supposed to do?" the Hibiki girl looked nonplussed.
"Yeah, sure, but our full power with such a machine would break it so easily! Try being more understanding next time!"
Misato began to sweat. "Ranko… do you mean you didn't put all your power in your punch?"
"Nope," Ranko shrugged. "Back at Nerima-1, Setsuna has better equipment to test out full strengths. Even Shinji could have hit harder, but we didn't want to break your stuff… so… sorry about that."
"Setsuna?" Misato asked.
"Setsuna Kuno," Shinji replied immediately. "She's got the best equipment to measure progress of a martial artist. Not even uncle Ryouga could break them."
"Papa did try though," Kima smiled a bit. "Almost succeeded too. Anyway, I'll be careful next time…"
Ritsuko just looked at them, stunned and silent. She then waved it off. "Alright… next test then."
Misato had to say it when all the tests were done.
"You guys are freaks…"
Ranko just laughed. "Yup, we kinda are, I guess… unless you lived in Nerima-1 for most of your life."
Ritsuko just studied the data. Her first hope was to see how much stronger they were compared to fully trained soldiers, or even some well-known record holders. In the end, she couldn't. Shinji, Ranko and Kima had far surpassed 'human limits'. It defied all her expectations. In the end, she was just forced to compare the data against all three of them.
Hands down, Kima was the strongest of the bunch. Even with the second strength test, all her data stripped Shinji and Ranko by miles. The clincher was the arm-wrestling test, which she just slapped down their arms like they were nothing. Ranko was stronger than Shinji as well, which Shinji agreed whole-heartedly, saying he wasn't trained much in strength.
Endurance, once more, Kima just slapped them both down. She took hits that would have killed normal folk. It was particularly impressive when Ritsuko had to overload the interrogation-slash-torture-bed-turned-measuring-tool and Kima didn't even react as thousands of bolts just came at her body. Using that method, Ranko also scored a higher score than Shinji as well.
When it came to measure speed and agility, it was pretty much a fight between Ranko and Shinji. Running speeds, Ranko inches out Shinji, while at reactionary speed, Shinji just blew the red-head out of the water. Kima offered no challenge. While she was a good deal faster than some regular people, when she was being compared to Shinji and Ranko, she just couldn't cut it.
In the end, Ritsuko had to conclude the following:
Kima was the strongest and hardiest of the three.
Ranko was the most balanced of the three.
Shinji was the most agile, yet also the weakest of the three.
The three began to explain that all their attributes were all enchanced by Ki (or bio-energy as Ritsuko called it), and that their abilities are pretty much determined by their training methods. Kima was trained as a powerhouse, to give powerful hits and to take them as well. Ranko was raised to be adoptive, able to use different martial art disciplines as her core fighting style. Shinji was a more traditional student, raised to hold and use a sword, and the style he used focused more on speed than anything.
Now, the fun part came. The ability to manipulate bio-energy for external use… something the faux-blonde had been looking forward to quite some time. She had a lot of questions.
"So… bio-energy is generated through meditation?"
"Yeah," Ranko replied easily. "When your body is well trained and lithe enough, you can call forth your Ki by finding it through meditation. Our attributes are enhanced by Ki, so training our body can be considered part of Ki manipulation… but it is only in your body. To bring it out, you need a state of mind.
"My dad first learned that one can use one's emotion as a basis of Ki. The feel of energy flowing to one's stomach area, then pulling it outwards towards your hand… the problem was, using emotion as a basis of using Ki attacks made it quite unstable."
"What do you mean?" Ritsuko asked.
"Well… for example, my dad's Moko Takabisha was based on his confidence," the red-head offered.
"My dad's Shi Shi Hokodan was based on depression," Kima added.
"Depression?" Misato blinked. "Um… that's not very healthy is it?"
"No, not really," Kima smiled a bit. "Imagine trying to depress yourself every time you launch an attack. It affects your mental health, and it slowly cripples you from using Ki attacks."
"Depression I can understand… but confidence?" the faux-blonde asked Ranko.
"Well… confidence is nice, but when you keep being confident every battle… you tend to lose your 'edge', especially when things get a little bit too dangerous. Being confident in battle is one thing, but over-confidence will just ruin you," Ranko replied. "So after a while, our dads began to develop ways to summon Ki attacks without using emotion. They passed those methods on us. Our Ki attacks are not emotion based.
"Of course, those are just Ki blasts… there are more uses of Ki than those," Ranko continued. "For example…"
The red-head looked upwards, and she smirked. She raised her fist, and shouted, "Hiryu Shoten Ha!"
Kima and Shinji knew the attack, and braced themselves accordingly. Ritsuko and Misato weren't, and not expecting a large tornado to surround Ranko, the blasting wind pushed them both to the ground. When the wind finally subsided, the only words that were spoken were pretty much described the feelings of both women.
"Holy crap!" Misato shouted.
"Ah, that's nothing!" Kima suddenly went towards one of the walls, and placed poked it with her finger. "Bakusai Tenketsu Revised!"
The whole wall suddenly exploded outwards, spraying shards of metal, cotton and even concrete outwards. Again, Ritsuko and Misato looked completely disheveled by the amount of destruction by what they apparently perceive as a 'finger poke', and by Kima's disregard for having chunks of materials fly at her. She didn't even blink.
"Hah! Useless against opponents directly," Ranko smirked, then went towards a machine. "Here's something more impressive! Kachu Tenshin Amaguriken!"
"Yikes…" Shinji began to sweat as Ranko's fist blurred, and the machine she began hitting was slowly being reduced to scrap. "Um… big sis… Kima…!"
"Che! How about some new techniques, Saotome… like this!" Kima then began to glow green.
"Fine by me!" Ranko suddenly began to glow in a golden light.
"Oh my… excuse me, Misato, Closet Hentai…" Shinji then grabbed the collars of the shocked Misato and Ritsuko and began to drag them away. "That's our cue to leave."
The whole NERV Headquarters shook, a shockwave that rocked everyone into an alert. It wasn't until thirty minutes later did the whole situation sunk in… and also completely destroyed the test site that Ranko and Kima were hot-dogging in.
"Destroyed. A room that was built to withstand a berserk Evangelion was destroyed… by a bunch of kids," Gendo moved his hands slightly, his eyes visible over his orange tinted glasses as he stared at the somewhat ecstatic Ritsuko, and the rather disheveled Misato.
"Yes!" Ritsuko declared, nodding. "It was utterly amazing! They did things that… WHOOSH! And then their strength! Have you seen the Third Child move? He dodged pellets fired at him all directions, and those he couldn't dodge, he redirected with a simple slash of his sword! That Saotome girl created a large tornado and was able to punch like a damn machine gun! And that Hibiki girl… she just tore a wall with a frigging finger poke!"
"So, am I to understand that you, without my expressed permission, decided to use an EVA testing room, using NERV equipment to gather data on three kids, one of them being the Third Child, and consequently, that little gathering destroyed that said room, and the equipment?"
"Um… I… yeah…" Ritsuko replied sheepishly.
Misato looked at her friend with hard eyes. "You went about this behind the Commander's back?" she whispered harshly.
"It was for the data!" Ritsuko blurted out.
"Data which was destroyed along with the room," Gendo muttered. He shook his head. "We are humanity's last hope. Our job is to defeat the Angels. Please remember that before you start going around and wasting our time and NERV's resources. Dismissed."
Misato saluted, while Ritsuko gave a slight nod, before the two left the Command Room. When they were finally out of viewing range of the Command Room, the purple-haired Captain looked at her friend.
"Well that was a waste of time…"
"Oh shut it, Misato," Ritsuko muttered.
"You went behind the Commander's back. I mean… I bumble at times, and you go lecturing me about it… but what you did?" Misato shook her head, smiling a bit. "You could have been called in grounds of insubordination, or even treason. You're lucky commander Ikari seemed to be in a good mood."
Ritsuko snorted at that. Good mood… yeah right. The man was going to take it out on her one way or another, he just couldn't be bothered right now. And for what? All her data was lost… so what if she was able to finally witness all the bio-energy stuff with her own eyes? She had nothing to show for it.
"Damn… who would have known that behind those cheery exterior, we have weapons of mass destruction in each of them?" Misato whistled. "Not so much with Shinji. He may be the weakest of them, but he doesn't lose control of his emotion like those two."
"Of course," Ritsuko snorted. "Your Shinji-kun is a perfect man. He can do no wrong."
"You know, Ritsuko, I've had it up to here with your little stupid vendetta with Shinji. What the hell is your problem with him?" Misato demanded.
"I have no problem with him!"
"Yeah right… I saw your face when you got Shinji strapped in that electric bed!"
"Ouch… I'm at my limit," Shinji declared as his body winced at the voltage running through him.
"Oh, I'm sure you can take in more," Ritsuko replied with a somewhat dark grin. "I'll increase the voltage just little bit…"
"Ritsuko," Misato warned.
Ritsuko sighed. Yeah… she may have had that grin on her face when she realized she had the young boy strapped in a torture device at her mercy.
"He's a nice kid," Misato continued. "Wish you could see that."
"Easy for you… he is using your name most of the time… he still calls me Closet Hentai," the faux-blonde muttered.
"Maybe because he isn't comfortable around you yet or something," Misato sighed. "I mean… the boy isn't exactly an open book as he wants us to perceive him as much. He uses that stupid 'Oh my' expression less and less, and now he holds a more empathetic conversations with his friend or myself. The boy won't admit it, but's he's just shy. I guess I am lucky since I took him in."
"Yeah… and I am cursed to be insinuated as a pervert by him because he hadn't 'fallen in love' with me. You are so lucky, Misato," the faux blonde muttered.
"You still on about that?" the Captain shook her head. "I don't think Shinji's in love with me… or at least I hope so. I mean, we've gotten closer and all, but it was more of a friendship than anything. He's treating you the same way as he's kinda treating Asuka now… except minimal name-calling."
Ritsuko snorted once more. Yeah, only Misato would think having sex with someone will still produce something as simple as friendship. Of course, if only Ritsuko had known the truth (the fact that Misato and Shinji haven't exactly… well… touched, for the lack of better term), she may have listened. Instead, she just wanted to get out of this topic.
"Where's Asuka, anyways?"
"Left her in the apartment… she needed it," Misato shrugged.
"Mien Gott… there must be something he didn't do right!" Asuka muttered as she began to open her boxes. Everything in there were clothes she hadn't bothered to wear for the past year, and some were too formal to even wear regularly. She then began to flip around her room, looking beneath her bed, and then, at the last point of desperation, swiped her fingers amongst the narrow crooks of the room.
Nothing. No mess. The whole room was clean, made, and comfortable.
"There must be something! There must!" Asuka declared as she began to roam around the room, looking for that 'something'.
Back at NERV HQ, Misato and Ritsuko continued on their way in silence towards the Mess Hall, where they had left Kima, Ranko and Shinji after the whole incident. Misato then suddenly brightened up.
"You know what would be funny?" Misato asked. "If they destroyed the whole thing to cover for themselves."
Ritsuko blinked, and then looked up. "What the… that makes perfect sense!"
"Ritsuko… it was a joke," Misato muttered with a slight frown.
"It makes perfect sense why Ranko and Kima joined in!" Ritsuko stated, ignoring Misato's statement. "If they destroyed the data, anything we have seen or heard would have just been laughed up by the scientific community! Even those videos are nothing but considered well-made fakes! And when they realized I was going to expose them by using their weakest link, Shinji, they had to join in and make sure none of this gets out in the open!"
"Kamis, you're hopeless Ritsuko."
"I'm telling you, it's true!"
At the Mess Hall, Shinji looked at Ranko with a slight frown.
"Was that really… necessary?"
"Just to be safe," Ranko shrugged. "If Setsuna got mad because we gave our data away, she'd have made my life…"
"And mine," Kima added.
"Yeah, and hers more difficult," the red-head concluded.
"You didn't have to obliterate the room, though," Shinji whispered.
"Eh, more convincing that way," Ranko shrugged. "If the blondie really wants the data, she could always ask Setsuna. Then, she'd have to sign a non-disclosure agreement thing. Besides… no harm, no foul."
"Of course… you're not going to tell her that, are you?" Shinji asked.
"Nope… and you better don't either," Ranko grinned. "Besides… I saw her face when she got you on that electric bed. She's a bit twisted."
"She just doesn't know how to deal with me," the boy replied honestly.
"She works for your dad right?" Ranko asked, and got a nod in return. "If she can deal with your dad, she'd know how to deal with you. Maybe you ought to show her how a real man does it, little bro."
Shinji just rolled his eyes. "Please stop setting me up with older women."
"You enjoy it anyways…" Ranko declared teasingly.
"As Ranko enjoys younger guys…" Kima interjected.
"Or being single…" Shinji added. Kima just laughed.
"That one was below the belt!" Ranko screamed, trying to punch Shinji in the face.
To Be Continued…
Next Angel attack… and then… lol. I think I ran out of ideas. XD