MISATO'S SECOND CHILDHOOD

by Gunman

Disclaimer: I do not own Eva or it's characters.

Summary: Misato and Shinji brave the trials of life including school while their friends conspire around them to their own ends.

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Chapter 2

The 5th Child

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Shinji and Misato walked into the apartment, the purple haired girl still having tears in her eyes and holding onto Shinji like a lifeline.

He guided her into the kitchen and managed to release himself from her so that he could make her tea to calm her nerves.

At least that was his intention, as Misato came up and gently grabbed the back of his shirt.

"Are you sure you're alright, Misato?" Shinji asked as turned around to see the girl behind him.

"I'm better, Shinji-kun. Thank you." the girl smiled, but didn't let go of the shirt.

The pair had just gotten back to the apartment. Both Shinji and Misato had heard from Ritsuko that Kaji had been arrested for his attack. With the unshaven man safely tucked away behind steel bars the pair left NERV and proceeded home.

While Shinji had been disappointed in the man he had come to respect, the entire way Misato was crying and shaking.

Her reasoning was that she had nearly been ravaged by her former lover, against her own will. Yet she couldn't truly understand why she was so against it.

In the past when Kaji had come on to her she had found herself, bit by bit, succumbing to his charms as she did in college. And after seeing him again at NERV, since the 6th Angel battle, she had found herself slowly giving way to his charms once again.

Hell, she had nearly gone over to see him after Shinji had been released from Unit 01. Had it not been for her sudden stomach pains (which Ritsuko later deduced was the beginning of her age regression) she would have woken up in his bed and not her own.

That would have been slightly awkward for both of them to experience.

So why hadn't she allowed herself to be swept off her feet like she normally did? Why hadn't she succumb to his charms when he had her pinned to the bench with his greater strength and size?

The questions kept getting a mental swat away from her brain, like annoying house flies that wouldn't leave you alone. And the only thing she could think of that came close to an answer... was Shinji.

Not that Shinji knew about this, of course, but Misato realized that it was because of Shinji that she had resisted Kaji.

Misato hated her father when she was younger. Hated how he acted, how he immersed himself in his work, how he was never around when she needed him, even how he made no attempt to reconcile with her mother when she wanted a divorce. Which is why she was very confused when he selflessly sacrificed his own life in order to save her when Second Impact happened.

She even remembered the date: September 12, 2000.

It was where she had received her jagged scar that sat just under her breasts leading down to her stomach.

She hadn't bothered to check if she still had it, and figured she should go into Ritsuko to get herself checked out later on. She shuddered at that thought, however.

She remembered why she had broken up with Kaji in Germany, it was because she felt he was too much like her father. From the way he acted, not how he looked, she realized that she was falling in love with a man who was too much like the one she hated, yet felt a connection to.

Though there were others reasons to hate Kaji: the fact that he never shaved just annoyed her; the way he flirted with other women especially in Misato's presence, as if to make her jealous; the way he seemed to skulk around NERV like he had some ulterior motive; his lofty attitude towards life, like he was never really serious. And then there was the fact that he hadn't even tried to talk her out of breaking up with him. He just let her go, just like her father had left her mother.

While he had some good qualities, there was something about him that made Misato mad. Like he knew her well enough to be able to push just the right buttons. She hated that, how he could expose her weaknesses and vulnerabilities so easily. Worse is that he would use it against her, bringing up such personal issues, like when he asked Shinji if she was still so wild in bed.

Which, now that she thought about it, made her wonder why Shinji had been the only one to not react to that comment.

But Kaji's touch, his kiss, she remembered it well, and how it made her feel. Though now she felt disgusted at how she had wanted to 'dirty herself' in an attempt to spite her dead father. The man who had saved her back when she was 14 years old... 15 years ago... and now she was 14 once again. Which is probably where these mixed feelings were coming from.

Damn these teenage emotions and the memories they're attached to! Misato hissed to herself as she slammed the tea down her throat while a concerned Shinji watched her.

"Misato?" Shinji asked, sitting next to her at the kitchen table.

"I'm good. I'm good." she said with a forced smile.

"Are you?" he asked, concerned.

She looked at Shinji, trying to keep her emotions in check. Unfortunately she took one look in his eyes and tears started to fall from hers.

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(NERV Headquarters)

"I still can't believe everything that's happened within the last twenty-four hours." Maya said as she finished the last of her paperwork.

"Which part?" Ritsuko asked. "Misato becoming a teenager? Misato becoming the 5th Child? Kaji attacking Misato? You getting a promotion? Or you and I getting joint-custody of Misato, Shinji and Asuka?"

"Uh... All of it." she sighed.

"I know what you mean." Ritsuko replied. "Still... we have to deal with this as best we can."

"I'm more surprised at what Kaji did. I mean... I know he and the Major have history, but..."

"Had history, Maya. Still, I'm more than a little shocked by that too." If he liked them young he would have attacked Asuka long before now, considering how she throws herself at the man. Then again he and Misato do, DID, have a lot of history. She thought.

"What's going to happen to him?" the new captain asked.

"Well... considering Misato's age and what he tried to do... I'm not sure I want to think about it."

"Right... anyway, there's a new issue to consider."

"Which one?"

"Well... I've taken the liberty of arranging for The Major... I mean Misato's new school ID."

She handed Ritsuko the file and the blond doctor looked it over. Her eyebrow shot right up.

"MISAO Katsuragi? Misato's younger cousin from Osaka?" the blond scientist gasped as she read the file over again.

"Well... some of the people at the school probably know Misato as Shinji and Asuka's guardian. They might ask why Misato looks like... Misato." Maya tried to explain.

Ritsuko nodded in agreement. "Right. There would be a ton of unanswerable questions that we can't address right now. Maybe never. Still... 'Misao'? Not the most creative thing you've ever come up with."

"Well..." the techie blushed.

"Still, it'll have to do." she sighed and reached for another cigarette.

"Uh... Senpai? Should you be smoking? I mean... we have to set a good example for the children."

In place of Misato-the-beer-guzzling-guardian that won't be hard. The older woman thought. "I won't smoke when we're at home. And right now, I need this!" she said as she lit up.

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(Living Room, Katsuragi/Ikari/Sohryu apartment)

As Shinji lead the still upset Misato out into the living room to get her more comfortable, Misato started to think about what her problem was.

I am in Hell! She thought as she sat down on the couch.

She had been a teenager only a couple of days and already she had lost so much.

She couldn't drink her beer, as she was no longer legal.

She couldn't have her curry, on orders from the Commander.

She couldn't drive her car, her blue Renault Alpine A310, as she was also too young.

She couldn't carry her sidearm anymore, her Heckler & Koch USP .40 S&W.

She had been removed from her job as Operations Director as a result of her 'regression', despite how sharp her mind had remained.

She had lost about five or six inches and several pounds. She had originally been about 6 feet tall, but now she was about 5'4", the same as Shinji.

And add to the fact that because of this she had lost considerable strength. Enough that she had been unable to repel an attack by Kaji of all people.

While Misato couldn't fathom the man's reasoning, she took solace in the fact that it hadn't gone that far, thanks to Shinji.

That thought made her smile as she realized what she had gained out of this.

For starters her youth. Less than a week ago she had been steadily on her way to 30. Now she was 14 again. Most women would be totally enjoying this.

She was now a pilot candidate just like Shinji was. This meant that she could get her revenge on the Angels without having to use Shinji and the others to do it. But it also meant that she would be able to protect Shinji, keep him from getting hurt. Lord knew Asuka wouldn't do it if she could, and Rei would only do so under orders.

Because she was now a teenager she needed new clothes, and Asuka had that in abundance.

She wondered if she could requisition NERV to have them give up some of Asuka's clothes to her. It would probably work, since it wouldn't involve NERV losing any resources.

Misato grinned a little at that.

And most importantly... she no longer had to deal with her annoying paperwork. (The image of the hundreds of pounds of complaints from the first 7th Angel sortie flashed through her mind)

She wished that she had her own Eva though, but after the disaster involving Unit 03, Misato wasn't pushing the matter.

"Do you want to talk about it?" Shinji asked, breaking Misato out of her thoughts.

Misato turned back to Shinji and smiled.

"I... I just feel a little helpless, Shinji." she said.

"Because you're a teenager?" he said, stating the obvious.

"Yes." she said.

"I feel that way a lot. Even in my Eva I don't feel invincible." he confessed.

"Is it really so bad when you fight?" she asked, wrapping her hand in his.

"Worse. I feel everything that happens to the Eva." he answered, unconsciously closing his fist.

"That's not a pleasant thing to look forward too."

"Trust me, it isn't."

"So how do you do it, Shinji? How do you keep doing it?"

"I just... I just remember that I'm fighting for other people."

She looked at him strangely. "Not like... your father?"

Shinji looked a little sad at that. "When I first piloted, it was for Rei, so that she wouldn't have to. It was a position that my father put her in. Then I piloted for the sake of hearing my fathers praise. But I realized he would never truly accept me as his son. I'm sure I'm just a pilot to him. And then you told me that you needed my help to get revenge against the Angels for what they did to your father, so I had another reason."

Misato felt her heart wrench at how she had used Shinji for her own needs. Like everyone else.

"In a way it made me feel needed. Useful." he said.

A small silence fell over the pair before Misato asked.

"So... what's the reason now?"

"I guess... to protect mankind the best I can." he said. "To protect the people I care about."

"People like..."

Shinji turned to his former guardian. "You, for one."

Misato smiled as she threw herself against Shinji, crying into his chest once more. "I'm sorry, Shinji! I'm so sorry!"

Shinji just held her as she continued to weep.

It was fortunate that Asuka had chosen to go over to Hikari's house rather than deal with her new roommate.

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(Akagi/Ibuki Apartment, three days later)

Shinji, Misato, Asuka and PenPen had been moved into a new apartment along with their new guardians: Ritsuko and Maya.

Naturally Asuka was unhappy about this arrangement, but as it was the commander's order she could not do anything about it.

At least Rei wasn't there. That would have made this whole thing worse.

The only thing that helped was the fact that the place they had moved in to was specially made for a family of five.

The commander had agreed to this because one apartment, though larger, was more economical than having NERV pay for three separate apartments.

With their combined stuff it made things a little... crowded, but about what one would expect from the group that worked together.

Shinji had the least amount of stuff, Asuka had the most. That was also to be expected.

"Morning, Dr Akagi." Shinji said as he finished making breakfast.

"Morning, Shinji." the blond scientist said as she dropped a file in front of Misato.

"What's this, Ritsuko?" the purple-haired teenager asked as she sat at the table. Maya and Asuka were already eating.

"Your new identifications, your school registration, and your excuse." Ritsuko said.

"My excuse?" she asked as she grabbed the file.

"People are sure to ask you who you are and where Misato Katsuragi is. So this was created for that purpose." she explained as she sipped her coffee.

Misato opened the file out and looked at it. Shinji set the rest of the plates down as Maya and Asuka came into the kitchen.

"My new name is Misao Katsuragi... not too different... I'm my own younger cousin... and... my older cousin Misato has been transferred to NERV Germany for a special top secret assignment?" she read incredulously as Shinji set down a bowl of cooked fish for PenPen. "Who the hell came up with this ridiculous story?" she asked.

Maya froze as Ritsuko and Asuka looked at her. Shinji's eyes followed and Misato's did too.

"I told you." Ritsuko said to the techie, not looking at her.

"I came up with it in less than a day. I didn't think it was that bad." the young woman said.

"You did?" Misato gulped, suddenly embarrassed for her outburst. "Uh... well... I wish you would have talked to me about it first. I mean... it's not... well okay it's a little hard to swallow... but..."

"I'm sorry, Major." she apologized sheepishly.

"Maya, I'm not a Major anymore. I'm the 5th Child now." the purple-haired teen exclaimed.

"Sorry Ma...Misato." Maya said.

"No problem. So... I guess I'm stuck with this, huh?" she grinned.

"Yes. And this afternoon we're going to go clothes shopping."

"Really?"

"Yes. All of your old clothes don't fit anymore."

"What about Asuka's?" she suggested, which caused Shinji to winch. He knew what was coming.

At hearing Misato, the redhead snapped.

"NO WAY! YOU STILL HAVEN'T RETURNED THE LAST PAIR YOU STOLE!"

"I DIDN'T STEAL ANYTHING! IT WAS IN MY CLOSET! YOU NEVER ASKED ME FOR PERMISSION, THEREFORE THEY'RE MINE!"

"GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!!!!!" the pair growled at each other.

Oh, god! Here they go again! Shinji groaned.

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(FLASHBACK, Katsuragi/Ikari/Sohryu Apartment, two days ago)

Asuka walked into the apartment hoping to find Shinji cooking breakfast, and hoped that Misato wasn't trying on any of her clothes.

Disappointed at not finding breakfast cooking, she went to Shinji's room.

Empty.

Where is that baka? She wondered as she stepped into the living room and froze when she saw both Shinji and Misato sitting on the couch, the purple haired girl lying against the boys chest like it was a pillow.

Ohhhhhhhhh, this can't go on. She thought as she moved towards them. "WAKE UP!"

Both Shinji and Misato jumped themselves awake at that little outburst.

"Asuka?" Shinji gasped.

"Oh, your wake-up techniques need work!" Misato gasped.

"At least I wasn't using my seduction techniques!" Asuka spat.

"What? What is that supposed to mean?" she gasped in confusion.

"Don't play dumb, Misato."

"I'm not playing anything, Asuka. What are you insinuating?"

"I just don't believe this. First you make Shinji grope you, then you're modeling your plugsuit for him, now your curled up on the couch with him!"

"We must have fallen asleep." the purple-haired girl said.

"Oh, Gee! You Think?" the redhead shouted.

Just then, the phone rang.

Shinji went to pick it up only to hear Dr Akagi on the other end.

A minute later he hung it up and went back to the pair.

"That was Ritsuko. She needs us to come into NERV for some special testing." Shinji said.

"What? Now? All of us?" Asuka asked.

"Yeah." Shinji nodded.

"ARGH! I just got home!" the redhead fumed.

Despite Asuka's groaning, the trio headed for NERV.

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"What's going on, Ritz?" Misato asked as she stepped into the woman's office.

"Well, for one, I need to do a complete physical on you." Ritsuko said.

"Didn't you do that before?"

"All I did was blood and DNA work on you Misato. I need to do a physical exam to make sure nothing is out of place."

"I'm 14 years old, Ritz. I'd say that was VERY out of place." she said sarcastically.

"Just get into this medical gown, would you?" she said, handing her the folded fabric.

Misato grabbed the gown and went behind a white screen to change.

"Is there anything you need us to do, Dr Akagi?" Shinji asked.

"For right now, no. But since you're here you should go to the simulators and practice some more with your EVA's." she suggested. Since it was the weekend, there was little else to do.

Asuka groaned at that, but Shinji just nodded and went on his way.

After a couple hours of embarrassing tests, Ritsuko declared that Misato was perfectly healthy, but that she no longer had the scar that was under her breast, and that she was once again a virgin.

While she was glad of her scar being gone, that second bit actually shocked Misato.

"What? Are... are you sure?"

"Yes. It seems that the blue LCL somehow regressed your entire body back to that of a teenager. In doing so it returned you to the moment before you received your scar from Second Impact, and even further from when you lost your virginity."

"So you mean the... thing... is... sealed up?" she asked.

Ritsuko tossed her an exasperated sigh. "It's called the hymen, Misato. A simple, sensitive layer of skin that is mostly used to prevent unwanted pregnancies."

Ritsuko knew that there was more to the explanation, but she didn't want to overload the poor teens brain with something she would forget in a few days anyway.

"Wait! Does that mean that... if Kaji had... I mean..." Misato started to say.

"Would he have gotten you pregnant?" Ritsuko finished.

Misato nodded.

"Its possible. From what I can tell your reproductive organs have all healed up too. Actually, they look like they were never damaged in the first place." she said, looking over her x-ray chart.

"Second Impact." Misato muttered, remembering the event that had screwed her up.

"Yes." Ritsuko said.

Ritsuko knew that Misato had lost and gained a lot of things from Second Impact. The scar under her breasts, the psychological shock of witnessing Second Impact first hand, the damaging of her reproductive organs.

"So... I can have children?" Misato asked, truly wanting to know.

While her wild party days weren't completely over, there was a part of her that really wanted a child. This had started when Shinji moved into her apartment.

"Yes you can. Why?" the blond said, raising an eyebrow. "Do you have a prospect in mind already?"

"Had one for quite some time, Ritz." she said with a smirk.

Both eyebrows flew up as she said that.

"MISATO KATSURAGI!" she said in an admonishing tone.

"What? You'd like to hit that, wouldn't you?" the girl asked with a cheery smile.

"That's not the point!" she said, the vein in her forehead throbbing.

"So that's a 'Yes'?"

"NO!" she screamed.

"But you do like him." Misato pressed.

"He's a teenager, Misato!"

"And so am I!"

"Keep it up little missy and I'll drug you and have you fitting for a titanium chastity belt!" the blond warned.

Misato wisely shut her mouth, knowing full well the woman was capable of all she said. Especially since she was more the adult now.

Misato looked down at herself and fingered the area under her breast, tracing the line that her scar had followed.

"Now that it's gone, I kinda miss it." Misato said.

Ritsuko calmed down as she noticed Misato's thoughtful side emerge. "Not surprising. It was a part of you for half your life. It'll be awhile before you get over that feeling."

Misato smiled. It was like starting over for her. Almost. The 'almost' part being the memories she still had of Second Impact.

Suddenly, Asuka broke into the lab with Shinji behind her.

"Asuka? What's wrong?" Ritsuko asked the redhead.

"It's Kaji! He's been arrested!" the German girl shouted.

The group looked at each other impassively, telling Asuka that they already knew.

"You don't look that... wait! You knew?" she gasped.

"Of course we knew Asuka." Misato said simply as she put her clothes back on.

"I was the one who told Shinji and Misato about it." Ritsuko said.

"Then why didn't you tell me?" Asuka shouted at the group.

"Because we knew you'd react like this?" Misato asked.

"Well what was he arrested for?"

"Attempted rape." Ritsuko said nonchalantly as she grabbed her cigarettes.

Asuka paled.

"No." she gasped in disbelief. "No! Kaji would never do that!"

"The hell he wouldn't!" Misato spat as she finished dressing.

"You know Kaji well enough that he'd never do that!"

"You're wrong about that, Asuka."

"How come?"

"Because I'm the one he tried to rape!" Misato shouted.

Asuka looked at the other for confirmation, both Shinji and Ritsuko's expressions telling her she was speaking the truth.

However, Asuka refused to believe it.

"No! No, I don't believe it! This is a frame up!"

Ritsuko, utterly irritated at the way Asuka was acting, drug the poor girl, followed by Shinji and Misato, to Section 2.

There the agents played for them the tape that the agent had brought to Gendo the day of the attack.

The whole thing brought up the unfortunate event back to Misato's mind, and she clung to Shinji as she did after he had saved her from it.

However, even after she heard the tape being played she was unconvinced.

"You did this!" Asuka spat to the purple-haired teen.

"What?" Misato gasped.

"You... tricked him! Enticed him! You set him up!"

Misato's expression was one of shock, then anger. "How Dare You!"

Shinji was now between both Misato and Asuka, trying to keep them from killing each other.

"First you steal my guy, then you steal my clothes, then you steal his freedom!" Asuka shouted.

"You better watch that tongue of yours, Ms Sohryu, before it gets you into trouble!" Misato blared.

Ritsuko had to help the poor boy keep the pair apart, shaking her head. She knew that in Asuka's eyes the unshaven man could do no wrong, but this was ridiculous.

"I don't believe it. I don't believe it!" Asuka cried as she ran out of the room.

Ritsuko, Shinji and Misato left as well.

The agents in the room were all shocked when they heard this. Wondering how a college graduate could be so dense.

Naturally this little event didn't make things easier when they were forced to move into their new apartment together. Asuka pretty much kept her distance from Misato, though to piss her off she tried to get Shinji away from her. Not that Misato gave her the chance, seeing as she was practically glued to the boys hip.

The pair seemed to argue back and forth constantly, with Asuka being the initiator of course.

(END FLASHBACK)

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"Knock it off, both of you!" Ritsuko said, softer than the both of them, but firm enough to stop the pair from coming to blows. "You both have school in an hour, so finish your breakfast, get dressed, and get going." she said, sounding like a mother.

"And don't forget, you have testing at NERV right after school." Maya said.

"Yes, Ma'am." Shinji said, speaking for both girls as they broke from the table and dashed right to the bathroom. "This is going to be a long day."

"I'll pray for you, Shinji." Ritsuko said.

Shinji gave a small chuckle at that.

HHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

(Kaji's Cell)

The unshaven man languished in the small cell. He'd been there for three days now, unable to do little more than sit and think.

However, that thinking didn't last long.

"You know, I always figured you'd end up in here." a voice said to him.

Kaji looked around, but say no one.

"Honestly, what the hell were you thinking?" a voice called to him.

"Who said that?" he asked suddenly.

"Who do you think said it?"

"Who are you? Show yourself!"

"That would be a little difficult."

"Why?"

"Mostly because, you're looking the wrong way."

He turned his head.

"Still wrong."

He turned his head the other way.

"Not even close."

"Stop messing with me!"

"Or you'll do what?"

"I will find you and kick the crap out of you!"

"You'll only be hurting yourself."

"WHO ARE YOU?"

"If you must know... I am your inner self. Your... consequence, so to speak. Call me... Inner Kaji." the voice said with a snicker.

"..." Kaji was silent for a few seconds, until, "Then... why haven't I heard you talk like this before?"

"Well, you've pretty much ignored me for years. That and you haven't been in solitary like this for... well, ever."

"Meaning?"

"Meaning... without someone to talk to, you start looking inward, for your memories to keep you company. As a result... you are able to talk to me now."

"But... you did the talking first."

"Correct. You didn't know I was here, so I had to make the first move."

"Alright, fine. I'm crazy. So be it."

"You must have been. I never knew you had a Lolita-complex, Kaji."his inner-self said."I mean if you liked 'em young, I know a certain redhead that would have given anything for that chance."

"I'm not in to little girls."

"And Misato is what? 14...15 now?"

"Only in body."

"It wasn't her mind you were trying to force yourself on. Now tell me... why did you try to rape Misato?"

"Hey! It's only rape if they resist!"

"And what part of telling you 'No' over and over again, struggling to get out of your grip, crying about you hurting her, wasn't resisting?"

"Her body wasn't saying 'No'."

"Oh don't go deluding yourself now. What you did was a violation of trust and respect."

"So arrest me."

"Ha. Ha. Next joke, namely you. I thought you loved her."

"I do love her."

"Yet, you never told her. Never said the words."

"What does that have to do with anything?"

"Women may be more sensitive than men when it comes to love, but they still require you actually put your feelings into words."

"Are you getting psychological with me?"

"Hey! You took the Psych Course in college. Just cause you didn't listen doesn't mean I didn't."

Kaji grunted in frustration.

"Tell me Kaji, why? Why did you do it?"

"Because she was mine. She is mine!"

"Don't go getting possessive. You may have taken her virginity, but you never had her heart."

"What does that have to do with it? Besides, she never resisted me before."

"Oh yes she did! When she was an adult she resisted all of your advances. And this latest action, which is seemingly worse than rape, just pushed her further away than she already was." Inner Kaji said.

Kaji paused at that for a few seconds.

"What's worse than rape?"

"Betrayal."

Kaji paled.

"Don't."

"What?"

"Just don't go there. This is completely different."

"Betrayal of trust extends to both family and lovers."

Kaji fell his head. "I didn't mean to... I was... I was so scared... so hungry..."

"So weak. Just like when you tried to take Misato." Inner Kaji said. "What was your thinking?"

"I just thought that... now that she was a teenager again... I'd be able to sweep her off her feet like I did when we met. Start over, fresh."

"Start over fresh? She's a teenager, you're still an adult."

"I guess I... didn't see it that way."

"So you were trying to relive your past, without considering that Misato's mind might not have regressed like she did in body. Not your smartest move, Kaji-boy."

"Okay, granted my plan needed more... thought."

"Your plan needed to be reviewed, analyzed, evaluated, scrutinized, criticized, and rejected."

"Alright, I wasn't thinking! I wasn't worried about what could happen."

"Yes, you really should have considered the ramifications of such an unrequited gesticulation."

"I can't give birth!" he said, looking confused.

"I Said Gesticulation, no Gestation!"

Kaji held his head in pain. "I think you need to shut up now."

"Before... what? I start really getting into your head?"

"Uh... yes."

"Too late. I've been here for all your years! I know everything you do, have seen everything you've done, and even your most guarded secrets are known to me."

"Then why do you keep trying to convince me of my problems?"

"Because you are in denial about the things you have done."

"You're never going to let me go, are you?"

"Go where, exactly?"

Sigh. "Right."

"So... let the torture, I mean therapy, begin!"

Suddenly, Gendo and a pair of Section 2 agents walked in to the room while a third agent opened the cell door.

"Oops. Looks like I spoke too soon. See you in a while Kaji." Inner-Kaji said and then suddenly vanished.

"Uh...commander?" Kaji asked as the bearded man approached him.

"Yes, Kaji?" Gendo asked.

"What are you doing with that cattle prod?" he asked the now grinning man.

"This."

ZZZZZZZZZZZZAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

HHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

(Tokyo-3 Municipal Junior High)

"Hey, Toji, how's it going?" Kensuke asked as the taller boy hobbled into class with his crutches.

"How do I look?" Toji asked, rather tersely as he glared at the bespectacled boy.

"Not too bad. At least you still have your limbs attached." he said, looking at the cast on his left arm and leg.

"Some times I couldn't even feel them. Freaking giant robots. Why did I agree to that?"

"Hey, at least you got chosen! I bet it was incredible." he beamed.

Toji looked at Kensuke, totally upset at his friends enthusiasm.

"I COULD HAVE DIED!"

"Yes. But it would have been a spectacular death!"

Why am I friends with this lunatic? He wondered as he hobbled over to his seat.

"Hey! I got something that will perk you up."

"What?"

"We're getting in a new student today."

Toji didn't like the sound of that. People didn't transfer IN to Tokyo-3, they transferred OUT. The last time Kensuke had brought it up, Shinji had arrived. In the last week his life had gone downhill rather fast.

"It's a girl."

Toji still wasn't interested.

"And her last name is Katsuragi."

Now Toji was listening.

"Seriously?" the jock asked.

"Yeah. I red flagged the school's registry file to notify me of any new students coming in." Kensuke said, like it was something to be proud of.

Toji's eyes narrowed at the boy. "Can't you get in trouble for that?"

"It's not like I'm hacking into NERV or anything." Kensuke replied.

"You know, one of these days you're gonna get caught." he said as his friend waved it off.

"Anyway, I figure because she's transferring in, that means she's gotta be a new Eva pilot." he said without any real concern in his voice.

Toji was quickly losing interest in this.

"She can have it." he muttered.

Just then Shinji walked into class, followed by a girl with long purple hair and features that made the pair think of a young Misato.

"Is that..." Toji asked.

"Yeah! She looks like Ms Misato's younger sister." Kensuke said, curious as to why the girl had her arm around Shinji's.

Rei and Asuka came in behind the pair. Rei went right to her seat as Asuka moved towards Hikari. Shinji and the girl went over to the teacher and handed him Misato's file. They saw Shinji speak briefly to the teacher and the girl looking at him with a smile.

"What's he talking about?" Kensuke asked.

"How do I know?" Toji replied.

"Everyone! Listen up!" the teacher said as the students turned towards him. "Starting today we have a new student. This is Misao Katsuragi. Please make her feel welcome."

The teacher pointed to the seat right behind Shinji and the boy lead Misato over to it.

"They seem awfully chummy. Don't they?" Kensuke said.

"If they're Eva pilots..." Toji started to say.

"But Asuka and Rei are Eva pilots and Shinji doesn't seem as chummy with them."

"Well, in Asuka's case, sure. But he does talk to Rei more than most."

"Guess that's true enough."

Misao smiled at Shinji as she sat down. Shinji took his own seat and turned back to talk to her.

"See that? See the way she just flaunts herself?" Asuka said to Hikari.

"Who is she?" the class rep asked.

"That's..." she paused, realizing that she couldn't tell Hikari that she was actually Misato. There was no way she would believe that. "She's... Misato's younger cousin from Osaka."

"Why does she seem so chummy with Shinji?"

"Don't know. Probably just a slut or something."

Hikari cocked an eyebrow at that.

"Isn't that a little harsh? I mean... she hasn't done anything that bad, has she?"

"I caught her sleeping with Shinji one time when I got home."

"What?"

"Just curled up in his bed."

"So... she's living with you?"

"Commander's orders." she said, slightly frustrated by that.

While Asuka was talking to Hikari, Rei was off by herself, just sitting in her chair and staring out the window. But in the glass she could see both Shinji and Misao's reflection. She felt... angry, for some reason.

HHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

Asuka spent the rest of the day trying to get Hikari on her side against Misao.

However, while Hikari couldn't find anything unusual to really hate the new girl for, as was the case in gym class, lunch, and their other classes, the only thing she really saw was that Misao seemed to be hanging onto Shinji whenever he was around.

When Hikari asked Asuka about this, the redhead would reply that it was because she was a slut who constantly asked Shinji for sex. She said it so convincingly that Hikari wondered if it was true.

School was almost over and with the final period teacher out sick for the day the students had a free period. Shinji was back in class getting his books while Misao waited for him outside. Hikari came up to him and started asking him some questions.

"Shinji? Can I talk to you for a minute?" she asked.

"Sure, Ms Horaki." he replied.

"Hikari, please." she said, trying to be civil and all.

"Alright. Hikari."

"I just wanted to know... what's the deal with you and Misao?"

Shinji looked a little confused.

"What do you mean?"

"I mean... I know she's new and all, but that doesn't mean you should abandon Asuka like that."

"Abandon?" Shinji gasped. "You make it sound like I broke up with her."

"If you did, I'd be upset at you for hurting her." she said, with no amusement in her voice.

Shinji noticed a slight terseness in her voice.

"That would only apply if I was dating Asuka. She'd never date me." he said.

"You don't know that!" she said defensively.

"Oh, I know that, Hikari. Believe me, I know that."

"So you just toss Asuka aside for this new girl?" She asked, more irritated now.

"You don't know anything about her." Shinji defended.

"Asuka told me everything already."

Shinji looked at her, confused, then worried. "What did she tell you?"

"That she crawled into your bed. How she openly asks you for sex. How she stole Asuka's clothes."

Shinji had a horrified look on his face as she said that.

Hikari froze as he stared at her.

"What? She... I can't... I don't believe she'd say that... alright I guess I can believe that she'd say that, but still..."

"Shinji?"

The boy looked at the pigtailed girl and opened his mouth to speak. He paused for a second, realizing that this was Hikari he was talking to. His expression turned to one of anger.

Hikari backed away as he glared at her. His expression, one she had never seen before, scared her.

"You know what, forget it. If Asuka wants to spread lies, let her. Not like people care about the truth anyway." he snarled as he stomped off away from the girl.

"Shinji wait!" the girl said, running after the boy.

"What do you want now Hikari?" he spat back.

"What lies has Asuka been spreading?"

"What do you care? You're Asuka's best friend, your opinions already biased." he spat.

The girl looked shocked at those words. She grabbed his arm and stopped him in mid-stride.

"Shinji, stop! My opinion is not biased!"

"Oh really? I thought Asuka already told you everything about Misao. And if you listened to her then you're not getting the whole story."

"And what is the whole story, Shinji?"

"To start with, Misao never crawled into my bed and I never crawled into hers. We passed out on the couch watching television together." he explained.

"Then why is she so clingy to you?"

"Because I stopped someone trying to rape her."

Hikari froze in horror at that. There was no way Shinji would casually say something like that if it was a lie. As far as she knew Shinji never lied. But she wondered why Asuka hadn't said anything.

"Who tried to rape her?" she asked.

Shinji looked away, almost ashamed to say it.

"Kaji."

Hikari looked shocked again.

If Shinji was telling the truth, then it would make sense that Asuka would lie about that to protect Kaji. She knew her redheaded friend was absolutely in love with the man. Hikari didn't even bother to ask why the unshaven man would attack her. Just to look at her she could tell that Misao looked a lot like a teenage Misato.

"And what about Asuka's clothes?" Hikari asked.

"Which ones? The ones in her closet, the ones in my closet, or the ones in Misato's closet?"

Hikari blinked, knowing that Asuka did have a lot of clothes.

"And what does Misato think about all this? Having her cousin here?" she asked.

"Actually... not much. Misato's in Germany for a special assignment." he said.

"Really? So suddenly?" the freckle-faced girl asked with surprise.

Shinji just shrugged, which Hikari accepted. If what Asuka had told her about their cold commander was true, then there was little chance of arguing to get out of it.

Suddenly, Kensuke ran up to them.

"Hey Guys! Come Quick!"

"What's going on?" Hikari asked the geeky otaku.

"Asuka's fighting the new girl!"

"Oh, god!" Shinji groaned, fearing it would come to this.

The trio raced outside to the front of the school to find both Asuka and Misao engaged in a fight.

Actually, it looked more like a brawl.

"I'm gonna teach you your place, bitch!" Asuka shouted as she threw another punch.

"You and what army, Sohryu?!" Misao shouted back as she dodged the punch.

Shinji, Hikari and Kensuke arrived at the group of gathering school kids, pushing their way through until they found Toji with 'ringside' seats.

To Shinji it seemed as if Misato's rank of Major wasn't just a reflection of her tactical skill as he saw Misao grab Asuka's arm and toss the redheaded girl onto her back. Asuka got back up and threw a high kick that gave several people a clear shot of her panties. Misao ducked the kick and went low to sweep her leg across the grassy lawn of the school, knocking Asuka off her stance and onto her butt.

"Toji! How the hell did this start?" Hikari asked as Asuka got back up and threw a sharp kick to Misao's side.

"Well, Asuka was flapping her gums at the new girl, but the new girl wasn't taking the bait." Toji said as Misao grabbed Asuka leg and pushed on it, pushing her to the ground.

"So how did this start?" Shinji asked as Asuka jumped back onto her feet and rush-tackled Misao to the ground.

"The new girl said something about whoring herself out to unshaven pedophiles, and Asuka just snapped. Before anyone knew what was happening, she was throwing punches left and right." Toji said as the pair were wrestling around on the ground.

"Oh, boy!" Shinji groaned as Misao and Asuka succeeded in tearing each others uniforms.

All around them the students were chanting 'Fight, Fight, Fight' while Kensuke seemed to be drooling at the female wrestling match as he filmed it.

The pair pushed away from each other and faced off, while out of the corner of her eye Misao saw that Shinji was already there. Her mind quickly came up with a plan.

Asuka saw her opening as Misao's eyes shifted slightly to the right, and quickly moved in to punch her in the face. The purple-haired teen was stunned as the redhead pushed her advantage. She slammed her fists into Misao's face, arm and stomach, knocking her to the ground where her foot began kicking at her side.

Shinji, having witnessed enough, bolted from his audience stance and body-checked Asuka to the ground.

"That's enough, Asuka!" he shouted as he knelt down to help Misao sit up.

"What the hell, baka! I wasn't finished with that tramp!" Asuka shouted and got back up.

"I SAID THAT'S ENOUGH!" he shouted, startling everyone around with his volume and ferocity. Especially Asuka.

The redhead had never seen the timid boy explode like this before. But what made it worse was the fact that he was doing it for Misato, not her.

"Are you alright, Misao?" he asked gently as he held her.

"I've been better." the girl said with a smile as she saw the concern on Shinji's face.

All at once, Asuka realized what had happened.

She threw the fight! She mentally gasped. She lost on purpose and now Shinji's even more concerned for her.

Shinji helped Misao up off the ground and headed back to the school. The glare in his eyes caused the students to part like the Red Sea.

"God! That was such a spectacular fight!" Kensuke grinned as he checked the replay on his camera.

Both Hikari and Toji could only groan in exasperation at the boy.

HHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

Asuka and Misao were in the nurses office. Hikari was tending to Asuka's lesser bruises while Shinji gently applied antiseptic to Misao's more serious injuries on the other side of the room.

"Asuka? What's wrong?" Hikari asked as she gently applied the small bandage to her cheek.

"She lost on purpose, Hikari." Asuka said

"What?"

"Look at her."

Hikari did, seeing Shinji gently push his hands on Misao's side, the purple-haired teen winching and nodding at the boy. Shinji went over to the nurse and said something, the nurse going over to the medicine cabinet and pulling out a tube of Hot/Cold pain relieving cream. Shinji returned to Misao and handed her the cream. The girl smiled as she accepted it.

Hikari actually thought it was sweet for Shinji to do that.

"Crafty little bitch!" Asuka spat. "Well, we'll just see how much he likes her when..."

"Is it true?" Hikari suddenly asked.

"What?"

"Is it true? About what Shinji said about Kaji?"

Asuka paled.

"I don't know what you..."

"Did Kaji attack Misao and did Shinji save her before she could get raped?"

Asuka was lost for a few seconds before finally speaking.

"Hikari, I don't know what lies Shinji has been telling you but, Kaji would never..."

"So it's true." Hikari said, cutting her off.

"What?" Asuka gasped.

"I can't believe this! Asuka!"

"Kaji would never..."

"Why are you defending him?!"

"Because I don't believe it!"

Hikari said nothing as Asuka continued.

"Kaji is too much of a gentleman to even think about trying to rape anyone, let alone a slut like Misato."

"What?" Hikari asked, wondering if she had heard her right.

"Huh?" Asuka said, not having caught her own slip.

"You said... Misato. Not Misao."

The redhead paled as she suddenly realized her mistake. "Uh..."

"Asuka...please don't tell me you lied to me."

"I didn't lie Hikari!"

"Because if our friendship means anything to you..."

"Hikari, I Didn't Lie!"

However... Hikari could see it in her eyes that Asuka was hiding something from her. Something that had to do with Kaji.

"I want to believe you, Asuka. But you're hiding something from me. Friends don't keep secrets from each other."

The pair continued to talk back and forth while Shinji, oblivious to their conversation, noticed both Toji and Kensuke in the door way.

"Are you out of your mind?" Toji asked the otaku.

"Come on, Toj! I've never gotten such material." Kensuke cried out happily at the jock.

"If they find out you've got this..." he said, pointing back into the nurse's office.

"Oh, please! I have yet to get caught." the geeky boy grinned. "Besides, the ripped clothes, the panty shots, the hot girl-on-girl action..."

That was all Shinji needed to hear to know what was on that camera.

Looking around, he saw a pair of syringes on a small table. He went over to them and carefully removed the needle from one of them like he'd seen Ritsuko do several times before.

Misato looked over at the pair in the doorway and then back to Shinji as he carefully tossed the plastic tube towards Kensuke's feet.

His aim was perfect as he planted the tube under Kensuke's foot, the otaku boy slipping on the tube and falling forward into the hallway.

A sudden crash and a piercing scream of, "NO! MY CAMERA!" caused Shinji to grin widely.

Misato smiled at the boy, wondering when he had gotten so devious.

HHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

(Commander Ikari's Office, NERV)

"I think you enjoyed that, Ikari." Fuyutsuki said to the man sitting at the desk, writing something.

"And if I did?" the grinning man said to the older sub-commander.

"I'm just wondering why you would take a personal hand in something like that."

"Sufficed to say, we knew Ryoji's true purpose for coming to NERV. Without any actual proof we couldn't take necessary action against him."

When did that ever stop you? Fuyutsuki wondered.

"However, his recent 'attack' of the 5th Child has provided us with an excellent opportunity to extract any and all pieces of information."

"But if we suspected what his true intentions were..."

"Precisely." Gendo grinned. "Since we don't 'know' what his true motives are, we can fish for the truth for months to uncover everything the man knows and all of his motives while in NERV."

"I'm still confused why you need a," he paused as he read over the list Ikari had just written out. "Let me see... a live trout, a feather duster, a fireworks Sparkler, a nine-iron, a pack of already-chewed-bubble gum, half a pound of salt, two 6-inch candles, a rusty grill scrapper, two rolls of duct tape, and a copy of 'Barney the Dinosaur Goes To Washington'."

The sadistic commander grinned. "Better you not know, sensei." Gendo said.

The old man indeed hoped that he never found out.

Just then, the intercom beeped.

"Yes?"

(Sir. The Pilots And Their Guardians Have Arrived.) The agent on the other end said.

"Send them in."

(Yes, sir.)

Within a few seconds the trio of pilots walked into the large dark office immediately following Ritsuko and Maya. The older women looked upset, especially Ritsuko.

"Pilots, do you know why you are here?" Fuyutsuki asked.

"The fight at school." Shinji said, stating the obvious.

"Correct, Pilot." Gendo said. "According to Section 2, the fight was initiated by Pilot Sohryu. Is this true?"

"NO!" Asuka shouted.

"Yes." Shinji and Misato said.

The pair were actually wondering why Asuka was denying this, since The Commander had just said that Section 2 confirmed she HAD started it.

"You are Evangelion pilots! As such, you must set an example for other personnel, despite your age!" Gendo declared with mild force. "Therefore, Pilot Sohryu will be punished for this."

"WHAT?" she gasped again.

A fierce glare immediately silenced the girl.

"After careful consideration of the facts, I have decided that since Pilot Sohryu was the initiator of this conflict, she will forfeit half of her clothes to the 5th Child."

At hearing this, Asuka was starting to glow bright red from anger. Somehow, she managed to keep herself contained.

"Considering the extent of her personal effects, Dr Akagi, Captain Ibuki, and the Third Child will assist in sorting through the Second Child's wardrobe, which will be at the choice and discretion of the Fifth Child. Action to be taken immediately. Dismissed."

The quartet had to literally drag a stunned Asuka out of the office.

"That was a little cruel, wasn't it Ikari?" Fuyutsuki asked.

"I don't think so. I stated quite clearly that Section 2 reported that the Second had started the fight, yet she denied it. Her outbursts and frequent insubordination, not to mention her ego, have made her rather unpopular with virtually everyone." he said. "And you have to admit, the girl has more clothes than is necessary for any teenager her age."

"You like seeing her taken down a notch or two." the older man said.

"Yes. I do." the man said, grinning widely. "Now... about my list..."

HHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

Authors Notes:

Here's my second chapter for this story.

However, at this point, I am unsure where to go with this. Obviously it is a Shinji/Misato story, but any ideas, comments, or suggestions would be appreciated.

Also, several people have criticized me on how I portrayed Kaji. It's not that I really hate the guy, it's just that I don't like him that much. Also, I needed a situation which would bring both Shinji and Misato closer together. Also, some people wanted me to have Gendo continue to be the bastard king, so I have upped his meanness a little.

Though honestly, Gendo doesn't get a big part in this story only because I can't see where he'd care about Shinji and Misato's relationship. It's got nothing to do with Rei, his scenario, or his plan to initiate Third Impact and reunite with his wife.