This is my own take on the Eva series post-16th angel, following the alterations included in the manga version (which in this case is the 11th). To those who haven't read it, here is what's different:
1) Kaworu is already introduced (around the equivalent of episode 22).
2) Shinji doesn't like Kaworu--at all : )
3) Asuka is incapacitated after the 15th angel (10th angel here)-- she's basically the way she is at the beginning of episode 24.
4) Only 12 Angels in the manga.
5) Rei and Shinji have a more well-defined relationship--Rei develops feelings for Shinji after the attack of Zeruel, but hasn't voiced them. Shinji does not act any differently, but is aware that he may see her as more than a friend.
6) Kaworu replaces Asuka immediately following her mindrape-- he and Rei go out to fight the 11th Angel together.
The story starts at the attack of the 11th Angel.
I do not own Evangelion (Property of Gainax) or "You Belong To Me," originally performed by Patsy Cline.
Chapter 1: Genesis
Rei came out of her reverie as the Eva's lift screeched to a halt and clicked into place, signaling its arrival on the surface of Tokyo-3. With only the force of her will, she moved the mechanical behemoth's right hand and clutched the equally massive pallet gun on the side of the elevator, then stepped out into the almost blinding sunlight. She felt the creak and groan of machinery beneath her as the monster she controlled obeyed her thoughts and moved behind the trees that sheltered its presence from the Angel hovering above her. She was so focused on the task at hand that she was a little surprised when she heard the voice of her fellow pilot from the comlink.
"Ayanami--are you in position?" Kaworu asked from the cockpit of Unit-02.
Rei didn't answer at first, having gotten accustomed to the boisterous and arrogant ranting of Unit-02's former pilot so well that the voice of someone else, especially this new pilot, was a little unsettling. But she would get used to it, she supposed. Sorhyu wouldn't be piloting, much less capable of coherent conversation, for quite a while.
"I'm ready when you are," she answered passively. They both focused their attention on the floatingdouble-helixof light that was the Angel.
From inside the cockpit of the quarantined Unit-01, Shinji sat watching the events unfold above him, thanks to the video feed coming from a combination of NERV's surveillance system and the video monitoring installed in each Eva. He knew that he was being paranoid, but he watched Rei's Unit-00 with a sinking feeling in the pit of his stomach. Misato had assured him that the both Kaworu and Rei would be fine (two-on-one odds being her sole supporting argument), and normally Shinji would be glad to not have to go and fight anyway. After what had happened to Asuka, though, Shinji felt far more worried. He though of the normally energetic girl and how blank her face had looked from her psychological attack. How broken she was--possibly beyond recall. And she was the best of all of them.
What if...something happened to Rei? Shinji shook the thought from his already anxious mind. No-- he didn't want to think about that. Rei would be fine. She was such a strong person-- she'd find a way to survive. Still, he had never been so anxious to go into battle.
"All right, listen up," Misato's voice barked over the intercom. "We can't confirm it's an Angel at this point. The pattern keeps shifting from Blue to Orange."
Ritsuko looked at the monster onscreen thoughtfully. "Is it waiting for us to strike first?"
"Rei, Kaworu-- we can't do anything for now. Just hold position and observe it."
The pilot of Unit-00 narrowed her eyes as she spoke with a primal certainty: "No. It's coming."
Without warning, the Angel morphed from its double-helix form into a single ring of light, then broke itself in two and headed straight at her.
Kaworu saw it coming and pushed Unit-00 out of harm's way before firing his rifle. The shots bounced cleanly off the being as it continued to aim at Rei.
"The rifle doesn't work! I need another option!" Kaworu yelled into his intercom.
Misato had to think fast. "Aoba! Send up armament elevator #26!" The technician assented wordlessly, keying the request into the computer terminal. "Kaworu--I'm sending up the dual saw-- try and get the Angel off Rei's back!"
Rei was just barely avoiding the Angel's strikes as it sped at her. After avoiding a close hit, she saw an opening in the Angel's defense and fired at it-- splitting its one end into a dozen. Rei's eye's widened as the monster finally made contact, smashing through her AT field as though it was nothing. She managed to grab the beast and continue to shoot it with her rifle, but it was implacable in its quest to destroy Unit-00.
"Ayanami!" Shinji shouted her name, his eyes wide with fear.
At that moment, Unit-02 leapt through the thick trees into the air, and landed right next to where Rei and the Angel were, carrying the energy saw in the Eva's right hand.
Despite the dire situation they were in, Misato and Ritsuko both uttered words of astonishment at the fifth Child's piloting. Even Shinji was impressed-- he grudgingly admitted that although Asuka was very good, Kaworu was much better.
The Angel didn't stop it's assault on Rei, but turned its other end to charge Unit-02.
"Sorry," Kaworu smiled into the intercom, "but I'm going to win this one." The plan is against you, he thought at the Angel.
It sped towards him, but Kaworu managed to hold the Angel off with the saw. Sparks flew as the vibrating, serrated blades of the saw made contact with the being of light, but it couldn't pierce the 'skin.' He grimaced as the end of the Angel touched the flat of the blade and thick veins began to spread just under the metal. Damn... an 'encroachment' type, Kaworu thought as he dropped the saw before it could spread farther.
Shinji had his eyes glued on Unit-02, but a faint scream, really more of a gasp, and he feared for the worst. No... He quickly switched the screen over to see the Angel spreading through Unit-00. He stared in a state of utter shock, unable to think or function, until another groan of pain reached his ears.
"REI!" Shinji screamed into the intercom, as though his words could change what he was seeing.
Kaworu gritted his teeth in frustration as he pulled out his progressive knife, his last resort. Before hecould react,the Angel, who still had the dual saw, threw the weapon at him while it was still functioning. A second later, Unit-02 fell to the ground, its right leg completely severed. Kaworu wanted to scream from the sensory feedback, and nearly believed he had lost his real leg, but all he could do was freeze up, trembling from the Eva's shared pain.