Chapter I My Mind, to Your Mind
Well here's a random idea that I've come up with for pure fun.
Summary: Takes place just prior to the 12th Angel, Shinji and Rei have their cross-synchronization experiment, when something goes wrong. Now their minds are in a sense linked, and they learn of each other's secrets and thoughts. How will Shinji take all this knowledge, and how will Rei react to a new level of understanding as a human?
To those who are familiar with this story, this chapter is an edited and revised version of it. I hope to see your comments about this chapter soon
A lovely day it was in the city of Tokyo-3. Like any other day, it was sunny; always sunny, or rainy. Second Impact, a catastrophic event in the year 2000, its almighty effects lingered in the world today. Abnormal weather patterns due to misaligned planetary axis left the Earth an almost pure dry ball of rock. Their distance spared them from the intense and dangerous heat allowing the planet to maintain its ways.
A sunny day was a day meant to be enjoyed, regardless of any weather pattern. It was a time to leave the confines of one's home and spend time with friends and or family, to simply let go and enjoy the warmth. It was a time in which people could simply let go and be themselves, with almost no care in the world. That was not true within the city of Tokyo-3. Although in the mighty fortress city people could be seen in parks, enjoying the day like any other, three fourteen year olds, did not have such luxury. Already stripped of any chance of a normal pre-teen life, they piloted massive machines known to the world as the Evangelion.
To the world, they are the Children. The Chosen Ones, selected by the Marduk Institute to pilot these powerful machines, against a deadly enemy known as the Angels, the ultimate evil against mankind. The pilots fight these monstrosities in mortal combat; their lives forfeit at any time, any moment. Anything could happen, happened; every possible problem that existed existed. Because of the war, pilots Ayanami Rei, Soryu Asuka, and Ikari Shinji, had been stripped of their lives, and trained in the art of war, to pilot these machines. They have been bound by fate to pilot such machines, cutting off their chance in life.
Today, that loss of life may yet be recovered.
"Rei," said Ritsuko over the radio, "what's it like being in Unit 01 for the first time?"
"It smells like Ikari," she monotonously replied. The azure beauty simply sat there, in her skin tight plug suit, as she inhaled the masculine scent that was Shinji. As the LCL flowed through the entry plug Rei's azure hair framed her face, accentuating the crimson her eyes, complimenting her albino skin. Many disliked being near the girl for her demeanour; but yet from an outside perspective many saw something else. Many saw a young, lonely beautiful girl with the perfect body. Curves in the right places, along with an athletic body and her status as a pilot to boot, one would want to get to know the girl. Her face despite its calm composure seemingly radiated an angelic beauty not often found in people. Yet she radiated such beauty, drawing attention of those who wished to be her friend; such as the attention of one Ikari Shinji.
Ayanami Rei, the First Children, you exist because you have a duty, a purpose. To bring Ikari Gendo to his long lost wife Yui. Yet that duty, that fate, leads to nothingness. Although you desire such, it is an incomplete desire. You although a vile being, shall be offered a chance to lead a life, a true life, not part of the scenario laid out before you. The path you walk shall soon change as you shall be presented a choice. Choose wisely child, for you shall only gain but one chance.
"Shinji-kun, what is it like in Unit 01?" Ritsuko asked as she continued to take notes.
"Uh…" he pondered for a moment as he tried to find the words that could describe the feelings inside the entry plug. The young boy sighed as he tried to find the words. Leaning back he ran his hand through his chestnut hair. He wasn't much of a person, with the way he had grown. He often disliked looking at himself in the mirror often seeing an image of his father, due to the eyes. He had gained his father's eyes. But his were a depressed shade of cobalt blue while his father had cold, near-soulless calculating eyes. He didn't have much a body, only a bit of muscle from his training in the Evangelion. He closed his eyes and focused on the feelings around him. As he thought about it seemed to reflect his life. It felt cold, much like how his father had left him out in the cold, and how the coldness in his eyes seem to permeate into the entry plug. He didn't know why, but he liked his particular cold, like he could relate to it.
Ikari Shinji, Third Children, you exist without purpose. You now choose to exist with no reason, leaving you barren, dead, unable to cope with the world around you as it changes. You are unable to relate to people leaving you alone. You don't wish to be alone yet you do so pushing others away. Child you shall soon be offered a choice. A new path lays ahead of you that will lead you to something greater than what you currently walk. But this path shall not be taken alone. Soon you shall never be alone again.
"It's cold in here. And I think I can smell and feel Ayanami in here."
"Smell…?" Asuka asked over the line. "Is he perverted or what?"
"Interesting," Ritsuko commented as she looked over the data coming in from both units.
"What's up?" Misato inquired.
"Rei seems to have a higher ratio in Unit 01. But with Shinji's and Unit 00, the results are reversed."
"You mean that Shinji can't sync with Unit 00 as well as he normally does with Unit 01?"
"I just said that didn't I Major?" Ritsuko replied irately as her right eyebrow twitched every few seconds.
"Sempai, I believe we've collected all the data we can," Lt. Ibuki stated. "I don't think they can really do much at this point."
"I agree," Ritsuko replied. "All right you guys you can come out now."
As they prepared to eject the plugs, Shinji and Rei suddenly gasped in surprise. Pain lanced through their heads causing them to grip their heads. A presiding force begins to overcome them, as this power slowly crept into the recesses of their minds. At first, they shook it off as a side effect from synchronizing with a different Eva. But as the moments passed, the feeling did not ebb. It grew images flashed. Images neither would ever conceive possible, nor would ever forget within their life time.
"What? What is this?" Shinji groaned, clutching his head tightly.
"What is happening," Rei moaned out, as she brought her knees to her head.
Shinji began to see Rei. Rei in her uniform, in her plug suit, at home, with him, in the hospital, dressed in hospital clothing, a tube, a dark room, a crucified being. Shinji began to see things he never believed possible. He saw Rei as a little girl, with a woman with brown hair looming over her, with her hands around Rei's frail neck. He saw a dark chamber, filled with Rei's. He saw a massive white being that donned a purple mask with seven eyes, and no legs, crucified against a red cross, as LCL flowing down into a massive lake that surrounded the creature. He could feel darkness, consuming him, as pain coursed through his body. The darkness that consumed his body, consumed his emotions as he soon forgotten how to feel anything but loneliness and confusion. He could see himself, looming over Rei, as tears streamed down his face. He could feel some sort of mixed feelings of something, as Rei smiled.
Loneliness, pain, sadness, confusion, absolute nothing, these were the feelings Rei could see. She could see Shinji as a young boy, crying his heart out as he watched Gendo walk away. She could see Shinji looming over Rei, as he held her close in his arms, trying to bring some small comfort to her pain struck body. She could see the pain and anguish in his heart, especially during the battle against the 4th, and the feelings of pain and rejection, and uselessness when he was scolded for his actions, instead of praised. She felt the sadness he felt at the conclusion of the battle against the 5th, and how he was so happy that she was alive. She could see his memories, all the sadness, all the pain of loneliness, of uselessness, of unwanted-ness during the time he lived with his teacher. She could feel his desire to be close to someone, anyone, but feared pain, and closed his heart off.
"Doctor," Lt. Hyuga called out, "We have a problem. Something's happening with Zerogouki and Shogouki!"
"What?" Misato yelled.
Inside white test chamber where both Evangelions were restrained, they suddenly came to life, as both units struggled against the restrains that held them to the wall. Both of them growled menacingly as they leaned forward, trying all their might to free themselves, desperately fighting for some sort of freedom. The walls began to crack under the pressure, as the shoulder restraints began to creak and grind from the pressure. Inside the control rooms, technicians were working frantically, trying to solve the mystery, and put an end to the danger. Their efforts were in vain, as both units continued to struggle, trying to find freedom of any sort. Nothing prepared the people in the control center; both units broke free, as their mouth guards sheared open, revealing a set of red serrated teeth, roaring with all their might as they made one last pull, freeing them of their restraints.
"Cut the power," Ritsuko calmly ordered.
"How are they?" Misato asked, as the umbilical cables ejected from both Evas.
"I don't know," Lt. Aoba replied, "I can't monitor them."
"It's no good," Lt. Ibuki cried out, "Neither unit are accepting ejection commands."
"They have switched to internal back-up power," Lt. Hyuga reported, "Shut down in 50 seconds."
Both units instantly clutched their heads as they flailed about, trying to free themselves of something. From what not one knew. Inside, both pilots were struggling, in pain, both of them clutching their heads as images, thoughts, and memories flowed through them. Things about the other were being shared through their painful synchronization, as both pilots fought to absorb the information, while maintaining their sanity, and brain functions, while trying to fight against the overwhelming and excruciating pain.
Unit 00 let out a deafening roar as it started to slam its head into a wall, before it opted to punch the wall, with all its might. Unit 01 staggered back and forth, left and right, as it fought some sort force inside, trying to maintain control, yet seemly losing its battle. It suddenly flailed its left arm, as its fist smash into a wall, before it slammed its head against the same wall, constantly, as if trying to bring peace to its pain. Unit 00 suddenly spasms as it flails its arms out, following by a sickening crunch. It was far to close to a corner when the spasm hit, that it smashed its left arm into the wall, breaking its forearm in two. It let out a painful roar as it continued to smash its head.
A scream could be heard over the lines, causing panic within a certain Major as she yelled out, "SHINJI!"
"Both units will be immobilized in ten seconds," a voice spoke out as it started a countdown, "9…8…7…6…5…4…3…2…1…0." Both units began to slow down as Unit 00's head began to slide down against the wall, before finally it fell to the ground where it laid in a crumpled manner. Unit 01 however slumped against the wall for at the last second it slammed its horn into the wall, thus, having all its weight supported on that horn, as all of its body weight, including its arms, sagged down, and arching its back.
"Get them out of there!" Misato ordered frantically.
A few hours later in Gendo's office Ritsuko stood before the commander waiting for him to speak. As she waited, tension mounted as they prayed. She knew he was angry but to feel the extent of his anger was the last thing on their minds. Letting him brood in his patented pose she mentally prepared for the possible lashing she may receive. But more so she reviewed the data she had ready for presentation, of which were quite pleasing to her. Keeping that to herself she remained composed, ready to give her report when asked for.
"Doctor, report," Gendo coolly demanded, as he sat in his desk. Fuyutsuki stood behind the Commander, his hands behind his back as he waited for Ritsuko's report.
"From what we can gather, both Eva's synced with the pilots," she reported.
"Based on the information, I believe this could lead to some complications."
"Complications?" he asked. Although his mask of indifference didn't show, his mind already began formulating possible complications and counters against each.
"It seems that the Eva's did an exchange of memories." Gendo's mind instantly screeched to a halt. If it meant what he thought, results could be disastrous. If he knew what she knew, that was a problem, but if she gained anything, that was a problem unto itself.
"Clarify," he snapped.
Ritsuko smirked behind her clipboard as she thought to herself, 'Priceless, absolutely priceless. This is bound to put a wrench or two in his plans.' "The Eva's, somehow forced, the memories of their respective pilots, into the minds of each other. Meaning, that Pilot Ikari now knows what Ayanami knows, and visa versa. To clarify, they know how each other's mind work, their pasts, their feelings, and others. Basically, they have in a sense, bonded their minds."
"Bonded?" 'This is not good.'
"Yes sir," she replied, trying to hide the glee in her voice. "I do not know to what extent, but from what we gather, Shinji knows about the scenario, while Rei knows about what has happened to him."
"How will this affect the others?"
"I am unsure at this point," she replied. "However if the Eva's synced as far as I believe they have, the others will be affected during the next session, or will be affect during a transfer."
'Not good,' Gendo thought, 'This was not in the scenario. This was not supposed to happen.' "Very well doctor. You're dismissed." Ritsuko nodded, and walked out.
"What do you make of this, Ikari?" Fuyutsuki asked as the doors closed behind her.
"This it not good; if she is heavily affected as the doctor predicts, it would be pointless to terminate this one. The others will simply have the same results."
"What's the worst case scenario?"
"Empathic, and possible telepathic bonding. If that happens, the committee will take this into their hands, and the scenario will become un-executable."
"For my scenario to work, she will bond with Lillith. However, such a bond virtually destroys her soul, and she rejoins her. If that were to happen, it is likely that the Third Child will either die, or will join the angel, thus removing the medium regardless. Either way, if they are bonded as deeply, or their bond develops deep enough, Third Impact cannot occur as the scenario predicted."
'Perhaps this little incident will prove to you that you are not infallible.'
Ritsuko smiled as she walked through the halls of NERV. She recalled his visage as she reported. Although he did not outwardly express his displeasure and anger she knew she had struck a nerve. He was unhappy with the results. His precious Rei had been compromised. She knew if Rei were to be compromised in any fashion the results would be disastrous for him. But still she knew the results would be painful the next few nights if she were not careful.
Walking back into her office Ritsuko sat down in front of her desk and stared at a picture sitting on her desk. It was a picture of her prior to her college days. She smiled sadly, thinking about how her life had spiralled out of control. Although she lived under the shadow of her mother it was simplistic. She would go to school, go home do her homework, and sleep and repeat, with the occasional deviances, such as visiting her mother at her work place. Letting out a sigh she leaned back into her chair as she started to review the data from the accident. No sooner did she start her work that Misato entered looking pretty haggard, assumingly from trying to get everything organized.
"So what have you got for me Ritsuko?" Misato warily inquired as she slumped into a chair.
"I'm not completely sure," she began, "but I believe that what we have here is some sort of mental exchange of memories."
"Run by that me again?"
"I believe that both pilots experienced the memories of one another. Shinji now knows what Rei has gone through growing up, as well as Rei knowing what he has gone through. I don't know the extent of the effects at the moment, but I believe there may be some sort of bond occurring."
"Bond?" Misato asked, raising an eyebrow from curiosity.
Ritsuko nodded her head in affirmation, "Yes, a link of some sort. What kind, and how deep, I have yet to determine. I'm going to have to observe them for a couple nights to see what happens. That's all I can really give you. I gave the same information to the Commander and the Sub Commander."
"I see," Misato groaned as she leaned back further, allowing her head to loll aimlessly. "This sucks big time. First I have two berserk Eva's, now I might have two pilots that might develop a bond."
"Who knows, this might help both of them," Ritsuko offered as she went through her notes.
"And how, pray tell, will it help one or the other," Misato lazily shot back.
"Well for one, Shinji could gain some of her mental discipline, while Rei could gain an understanding of emotions."
That instantly drew her attention as she snapped forward and leaned over Ritsuko's desk, "You telling me that we'll have a male version of Rei?"
"Not of the sort," she responding, shaking her head slightly. "I'm saying that Shinji will not be as shy and introvert as he normally is, and is harder to tease, because chances are he'll be able to control himself."
"If you say so Ritsuko. Where are they anyways?"
"Recovery Room 402," she replied, her eyes having never left her notes.
Shinji immediately sat up from his bed in complete shock. Looking to his left he saw a window, with the afternoon light pouring in, also shimmering across the Geo-Front's lake. Looking up he saw that familiar ceiling, immediately telling him something had went wrong. He began to wonder what happened when pain lanced through his head, as the memories of happened flooded his mind. He knew what Rei was. He knew what was used to create her. His instincts told him to fear her, possibly distance from her. But he found it hard to; he felt connected to her. He didn't know why, he just knew he couldn't run from her.
A soft rustling suddenly drew his attention, as he looked to his right to see Rei sit up on her bed, in a daze. Her eyes seemed unfocused, almost, distant, as she stared into oblivion. For a moment she inanimate, suddenly coming back to life, as she instantly clamped her hand over her mouth before she leaned over the right side of her bed and vomited. On impulse he bounded over to her, gently rubbing her back, as she let it out. They stayed like that for some time, until both were sure she wouldn't vomit any further. Rei leaned back against her bed, as Shinji sat on the edge of her bed.
"Ikari-kun," Rei quietly spoke, "your left arm." Shinji looked down and gasped in surprise. He noticed that his forearm was in a cast, and sling. He didn't know why he didn't notice before, but it was most likely due to the fact he had been distracted.
"What, what happened exactly, Ayanami?" Shinji quietly asked, gently caressed the cast.
"I am unsure, but I believe we have exchanged thoughts and memories," she calmly replied.
"So…how much to you know?" Shinji worriedly asked, as he suddenly realized what he knew, and what she could possibly know.
"Everything," was her response.
"Even…even…" Shinji began to choke out.
"Yes, even your feelings for me," she completed. "Do you, know of my origins?" Shinji numbly nodded.
"I…I don't know what to think," he weakly replied as tears welled up in his eyes. "I mean, he left me, for you for god sakes. He created you, from my mom. He violated her. For god sakes he violated her genes. How could he? My own father, violating my mom's DNA! He created you with my mother, his own wife! Why does it have to hurt so much? I don't know why but…I'm scared for you, Ayanami."
"Scared for me?" Rei quietly asked. 'Someone…actually cares? I have Ikari's thoughts; I should not have asked myself that. He does indeed.'
"Thank you, Ikari-kun. However, does this make us siblings, or at the very least, half-siblings?"
Shinji vigorously shook his head, "No, I don't see you like that. You are…you are your own person."
"Ikari-kun," Rei began.
"Please, call me Shinji, Rei-san."
Rei nodded, "Very well, Shinji-kun. If you see me as Rei Ayanami, and not your sister, then I am, Rei Ayanami." Shinji merely nodded. Silence enveloped them for some time. A nauseating silence ate away at them, as they contemplated their thoughts, trying to organize the new memories with their own, trying to sort out what one felt for the other, and how they felt when they were around one another. After some time, the silence was broken.
"Shinji-kun," Rei called out, drawing him from his train of thought. "I cannot tell from the memories, but, since when have you harboured your feelings towards me?"
Shinji blushed slightly at the question; however his reply failed to mirror what he displayed, "Since I found you alive during our battle against the 5th." His reply was with conviction, of a certain confidence, that seemed rather foreign from the boy. Gone was the quiet, shy, introvert who hardly spoke his mind, unless forced to. Now, he spoke with certain clarity, understanding what he felt, and coming to grips with it.
"That long?" she whispered. Shinji simply nodded, as Rei started to blush a tinge of pink. She remembered that day well. It was the first time she ever smiled for anyone. She remembered feeling intense heat from when the shield gave out, before absolute darkness, as her Eva had shut down almost instantly after the Angel was destroyed. She felt the plug eject from the Eva, before it was placed gently on the ground. When she had opened her eyes, she at first thought she had seen the silhouette of Commander Ikari. As her vision focused, it had turned out to be Shinji who had opened the superheated plug. He had cried, happy she was alive. She had been unsure of what expression to use in that scenario. He said she should smile, and offered his hand. She took that helping hand, and gently smiled to him. She felt good that day. Not only did she learn a new way of expressing herself in certain situations, she felt slightly warm inside simply from the touch of his hand, even though the suit, she felt it. It was one of the few precious memories she had, with the Ikari men. She had a few others with Gendo, but the one memory, of the two of them saving her on one occasion each, bore deep into her mind, that it would remain with her, for as long as she lived.
The two remained in silence together. Neither speaking, neither moving, just letting the silence permeate, as they thought. Words were unnecessary for some time. They understood one another better today, and knew that the other was thinking for now, very much so eliminating the need for words. It just felt natural to be in the presence of the other as they slowly came to grips of the reality of the situation.
Their thoughts wondered to thinking about the person in front of them. Each reflected upon the lives of the other, saw how they survived through the hard times and how it moulded them into the person they are today. They saw the hardships each went through to survive and the suffering they had gone through. Although their lives mirrored one another there were aspects which differed.
Although she had grown up alone and isolated herself in school, she had Gendo who had often cared for her and spent time for her. She had memories of him, memories which at one point Shinji envied. Shinji however grew up alone having never experiencing love of a parent or a family member, never having friends, or someone he could talk to. Although Rei's relation with the Commander was odd there was a certain filial love she had for him; something that had been weakened since their accident.
From one thing to another, their thoughts drifted to their feelings for one another. With certain clarity Rei understood what Shinji felt towards her. Yet neither could make out what Rei felt towards Shinji. The feelings were mixed, distorted, unclear, not truly understanding the feelings. But perhaps it was mostly due to the fact Rei never had any real emotional maturity having grew up in a stagnant environment devoid of life. Yet despite the haze of confusion there was something between them; a connection of sorts. Although knowing there was something provided little understanding, as they were unable to discern the emotion they felt.
"What is it…we feel for each other?" they whispered. As cobalt locked with crimson red, they peered into other's soul seeing nothing but darkness envelope their soul. A cold, lonely darkness, developed from time and isolation. It was a deadly darkness, one that seemed to suffocate the soul of any joy, any happiness from their lives. A lack of self-esteem could be clearly seen, as neither of them thought highly of themselves. Yet despite the sickening black, bleak, unbearable darkness, there glowed a small shimmer of light. Neither was able to comprehend where this light came from.
Before, both had pure, dark nothingness. They had lived in the darkness all their lives, cut off from human interactions, not really sure of how to carry themselves in the public eye, nor how to act, almost like they never knew how to live, outside of their shielded world, which was true for one, perhaps the both of them. They were both shy, introvert, neither knew how to really express themselves. It was truly a bleak existence, both of them desiring a purpose to live for. Perhaps that this light they see in each other's soul just might be the answer. Maybe, just maybe, the two of them had found themselves a true purpose. A real reason to go on, a meaning in their lives.
So what are your thoughts of the revised version to those who are familiar? Is it any better from the original? Or is this an insult of the original? I backed up the originals so that if you guys don't like this version I could always repost the original when I get the chance.
To those who are reading this first time, same questions on your thoughts and opinions and such. Please be honest as then I will have a good idea of what people liked in terms of this chapter.