by Gunman

Disclaimer; I do not own Eva, it's characters, or this Johnny Cash song.


"And thank you, Kensuke Aida, for that stunning rendition of Gekigender from Martian Successor Nadesico." the principal exclaimed as the glasses wearing boy stepped off the stage. Anime otaku. She thought as she brought up the list to her eyes to read the next name. "Next up we have, Shinji Ikari and Rei Ayanami doing...a mystery number. Hmm. Apparently they wanted it to be a surprise for us all."

Off to the side of the stage, one Asuka Langley Sohryu was waiting patiently for her turn.

"God, the stooge is so dumb. Singing an anime song. Nuts. My number is going to blow everyone away." the redhead declared to her friend.

"Are you sure, Asuka? You don't even know what Shinji's going to do." Hikari Horaki stated.

"Please. He doesn't have any talent, except for his cello and he's still an amateur. I'll win by default which is what will probably come to."

A little sure of ourselves are we, Asuka? The class rep thought as she cradled her flute.

"Mr Shinji Ikari! And Ms Rei Ayanami!" the principal called out.

Suddenly, a young man dressed all in black emerged from the opposite side of the stage. He wore black cowboy boots, black pants, a black shirt under a black jacket, with a black belt and sunglasses. His hair was combed back and he was carrying a guitar case. He was followed by a lovely young woman carrying an electronic piano. She was wearing a black sleeveless blouse with a short black skirt and black shoes. What really stuck out about her, was her blue hair, pale skin, and red eyes.

"Isn't that Rei?" Hikari asked the stunned Asuka.

"It is. But where's Shinji?" Asuka asked as she stared at the young man in black. "That's can't be..."

Just then, he spoke.

"I'm sure everyone was expecting me to play my cello for this show, but I thought I'd do something a little different." Shinji Ikari said as he took the stool that was on stage and sat on it.

He popped the buckles on the guitar case open and pulled out a light oak polished guitar with a black finish on the back.

"This song is a Pre-Impact one, sung by a legendary singer of long ago."

Rei started the music, her fingers running over the keys, which thanks to the synthesizers made it sound like horns. Shinji then proceeded to pluck the strings of his guitar like he had done it a thousand times, adding his voice to the mix.

The only problem: it didn't sound like Shinji singing.

Love is a burning thing
and it makes a fiery ring
bound by wild desire
I fell in to a ring of fire...

I fell in to a burning ring of fire
I went down, down, down
and the flames went higher.
And it burns, burns, burns
the ring of fire
the ring of fire.

The taste of love is sweet
when hearts like our's meet
I fell for you like a child
oh, but the fire went wild..

I fell in to a burning ring of fire
I went down, down, down
and the flames went higher.
And it burns, burns, burns
the ring of fire
the ring of fire

I fell in to a burning ring of fire...

When Shinji and Rei finished the song, the audience was left speechless. A couple people started clapping, and by the time Shinji had put his guitar back in its case, the applause had turned into a ferocious roar.

Shinji and Rei walked off stage together, passing Asuka and Hikari, who were unable to pick up their jaws from what just happened.

"How did...when...where did he..." was all Hikari could say.

"I don't know, but I'll tell you this: I really don't envy the person who has to go after him." Asuka said.

"And next up, we have Asuka Langley Sohryu and Hikari Horaki!" the principal called out.

Needless to say, Hikari fainted dead away.


Back stage...

"Thank's again, Rei." Shinji said as he kissed the girl on the cheek.

"For what, Shinji-kun?" the blue-haired girl blushed.

"For believing in me. For convincing me to enter the talent show. For...everything."

"I have always believed in you, Shinji-kun." she said as she stepped forward and kissed his lips. "And I will never stop."

Shinji folded his arms around his girl and hugged her close.


Authors Notes:

I bought the Legend of Johnny Cash CD a couple months back, and just loved the song so much I decided to do a short fic on it.

I'm probably not totally accurate, and I'm definitely leaving out a lot of normal detail, but my other projects have been very time-consuming.

Anyway, hope you enjoy my first songfic.

Read and Review and Merry Christmas!