eva Repeating the Same Track
by Famira Damaris

Disclaimer: No, I don't own Evangelion. But I think everyone in Evangelion needs a group hug! Cheer up, everyone! :P
Author's Note: Well, this is something I had to write for school (some dumb Reflections contest - my English AP teacher insisted we had to write something for it >_). The theme was "I hold in my hand..."...don't really know if this fanfic has anything to do with the theme (I tried tho ;_;) I had to keep it original, but I was writing this in mind that I'd change the names to the Evangelion characters so I could put this on fanfiction.net. Kind of depressing, no shounen-ai (and usually everything I write is shounen-ai or shojo-ai o_O). I wasn't really writing from Shinji's POV: actually, these feelings are sort of how I really feel ^_^;;;; which I don't think is really a good thing >_. Good thing I've got anime and anime cons to keep me from getting really messed up ^.^; I was trying to write negatively because I figured all the other people would be writing with all these positive and unrealistic themes, so I wanted to be different. I changed some of the circumstances around from my original to make it fit more with Eva, (while trying to keep it close to what I original wrote tho) so....

Uhm...on with the fic. ^.^; It's only my second Evangelion fic (not multi-chapter), so please go easy on the criticism.

Italics are for emphasis and thoughts. This takes place right after Asuka moves in.

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Repeating the Same Track
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[Shinji Ikari]

It's raining – pouring, actually. Not that I really care. A lot of people say they "like the rain" or they're "sun people". As for me…well, I never bothered with that kind of stuff. I never thought it was important. My guardian Misato says that I never think anything is important and that I'm always depressed. She's right, of course. I can't argue with her when her words are true.

I turn over on my bed, staring up at the unfamiliar ceiling. It's only been a few weeks since I was sent here to Tokyo 3 and my father. Upon arrival, I'd been immediately placed to Misato's care. I haven't seen my father that much since I've come here, even though I'm the pilot of the 01 now, only glimpses of him now and then. However, when I have seen him at the NERV headquarters, it only hurts, because he hardly notices my existence. I might as well be a rock or something. Why do I even care what he thinks? I reach over to change the track setting on my disk player, adjusting the small headphones. This is a familiar line of thought. Why do I care some much about what everyone thinks, for that matter?

Oh, easy to answer that question: it's because I'm too weak in confidence to do anything else. I know that I'm a coward. I don't like confrontations. I want people to feel sorry for me, but I'm always afraid of change and responsibility.

Yup, that sounds exactly like Shinji Ikari to me. Yes, I definitely know what kind of person I am.

The familiar tinny music continues on through the headphones. I close my eyes. I know I shouldn't be just lying on my bed like this – my teachers gave all my classes a load of homework and that English project was due tomorrow. But I don't make any move to my backpack, which has remained unopened throughout the weekend.

Through the low volume of the headphones, I can hear the clanging of pots and pans in the kitchen. It's probably Asuka. I didn't move. Misato's probably gotten another hangover. Asuka was the new pilot, the Second Child (the same age as me, I think) - I wasn't on the best terms with her. As far as the German girl was concerned, I was something to be squashed into submission. I think she saw me as competition for everyone's attention or something. Especially since we were both living under the same roof. It's not like I want to be a pilot.I don't understand what's her deal.

The song comes to an end, the machinery in the CD player grinding slowly as it responds to the repeat command. The music starts again. I've heard this song so many times that I can predict all the changes in its beat.

I turn my head to my left, staring at my clock. It's almost ten-thirty. Looks like the others had slept late – I'd been awake since seven, but I hadn't gotten up to wake up Misato or Asuka. Not because I wanted to be considerate, but because I didn't want to deal with either of them so early in the morning. I wanted to have some time to myself without either of them intruding in.

But I know I'm going to have to face them some time or another. Doesn't mean I have to go out with a big smile on my face.

I don't like to smile. It's always felt unnatural and fake, like a plastic mask to cover up my emotions. Maybe other people like to do it. But I don't like smiling, so I don't.

Someone's shouting now, and I pull off my headphones, ignoring the fact that the running music is eating up the remainder of my batteries. The voice is clearer now that I'm no longer listening to the disk player and I can make out the words through the walls.

"–Breakfast's ready! Shinji, get your lazy ass out of bed! I know you're awake! Misato, breakfast!"

Despite the fact I don't want to leave my room, I'm already rolling out of bed. It's ironic, that I'm like this. I contradict my own feelings with my actions. Surprising that no one's accused me of being a hypocrite yet. Dropping the CD player on my bed, I move about the room, throwing on my clothes and not really caring what I wear.

It never matters anyway.

>>>>>>>>>

I slide open the door, making my way through the crowded mess littering the floor to the kitchen. Asuka's back is to me. I head quietly for my chair. I'm already seated in my chair before she finally turns around and notices I'm here.

"Took you long enough!" Asuka snorts sourly, though I can tell she's just saying this to cover up the fact that I had startled her with my sudden appearance. She turns back to her work, her chin-length brown hair swinging, "Breakfast's curry and eggs. Set out a beer for Misato."

Why don't you do it? She's not my mother. But I'm already out of my seat and approaching the refrigerator. Misato always has a beer (or several) in the morning. Usually she takes her alcohol really well, but last night she had went to a party a few blocks down and hadn't come back until well past midnight. I open the door, the frigid air blasting in my face.

"When did Misato get home?" Asuka demands as I pull a can from the rack, "She sounded really sloshed."

"I don't know." I mutter, "After midnight, I guess."

"Hmph," The fiery-headed girl sets out the plates, "Well, I'm not waiting around for her. Hurry up and eat."

I obediently do so, chewing on the food. I guess Asuka's a pretty good cook, but I've never thought to compliment her on it. She'd probably take it the wrong way or something and turn it into an imagined insult. Still, she's being unusually polite to me today…

A door slams open down the hall, followed by the stomping of feet. I don't look up as Misato staggers blearily into the kitchen, instead focusing on swirling the scrambled eggs and curry into a soggy mess with my fork.

"Where's my bee –" Misato cuts off mid-sentence and, stumbling over, plucks the beer can off the table. She ignores the food altogether and snaps open the lid. I still keep my eyes averted from both Asuka and the older dark woman.

"You were supposed to walk me home from school, Misato!"

"I told Shinji to," she replies calmly.

"Well, he took off without me!"

"That's his fault, not mine," Misato's voice is muffled by the can.

I can tell where this argument is going – I've heard it hundreds of times before. Misato's okay when she's sober, but she's cranky and irate when she's hung over. Which is pretty much every morning. I might be being too harsh on her, but I haven't really known either of them that long. I mumble something about being done with breakfast (which I've hardly touched) and leave the kitchen before I can become the brunt of the argument between the two.

I retreat back to my room, shutting the door behind me. Pause as I catch my own reflection in the mirror attached to the back of the door. The image stares back at me, a frail boy with dead hazel eyes almost covered by the messy shock of black hair. As usual, I'm wearing what Misato calls my "mule face": a slightly disgusted and angry expression. I relax my face until it's emotionless, without the slightest hint of anything that could be mistaken for a grin or a scowl.

I don't like frowning either.

I flop back onto my bed, resuming my earlier position. I'm not worried that Misato or Asuka will barge in: I've already recognized both their patterns. Misato always takes off somewhere after breakfast, if it's the weekend and there's no attack from the Angels. Asuka always goes to watch a movie on Saturdays and comes back late. As for me…well, I don't really do anything, except think.

I'm a pessimist. I'm also a depressing person – I've been told more than once that I'm "really boring" and that I'm "no fun to hang around", that I'm even "selfish". It's probably true. I'm anti-social. I don't really like the other students at school that muchl, so I keep mostly to myself. I'm tempted to chuckle dryly at a sudden thought. Yeah right, like I'd ever go on one of those idiotic rampages. I bet all those counselors are all talking about me just because I'm not in some clique. I almost roll my eyes. They're getting paranoid, with all these psychiatrists and that stupid Council they've got running. Besides, I do care about other people…but I do come first before I run off to help someone else.

I turn on the CD player again, putting on the headphones. I ignore the low battery warning and press the next track button until the small screen was showing the number of the song I'd been listening to earlier. I glance over at the clock, leaning my back against the wall. Not much time has passed.

The song starts. Maybe I should do my homework? No, it wouldn't matter if I did it now or at the last moment. The end result would be the same. Mostly a decent grade and me going back to thinking about nothing in particular. Sometimes I wonder why I even bother with going through these motions. I can predict how my future will turn out: all work and no rest. Finish high school. Apply for a good college (Misato, when she's sober, insists that I go to the best and well-known one). Finish college. Get a job. Get married. Get old and die. Go see if there's really a Big Old Guy Upstairs. It's depressing train of thought, really, but as I said before, I'm a depressing kind of guy.

The thing is, I don't believe there's such a thing as true change. Sometimes I get really depressed about this.

But I'm not suicidal. I'm too afraid to even think about it, and I know I wouldn't have the guts to go about with it even if I did. I simply go on living life as it passes me. I don't look forward to my future and I don't care to remember my pretty much unmemorable past. I guess that up to this point in my life, it's been a really dull path I've been walking on. I'm too much of a self-pitying coward to do anything about it though.

…I guess the real question is what I really do with my life, however dull it's been.

I'm usually weak-willed about a lot of things. I don't like making decisions, even if they're minor. I guess that's why I'm always following everyone's orders even if I don't want to. Because making decisions is deciding on change. I don't believe that I should try to be like everyone else and try to glorify things. Why should I try to play the leader/follower game? The music stops and starts again, the same beat and track.

I'm just…here.

The song starts to break as the batteries start to die out. I don't have any physical or mental power because I don't want the responsibility. I hold in my hands no power at all, except to exist. That's the way things have always been for as long as I can remember. I just go with the flow and deal with whatever comes at me. It's all the same, dull and boring, but it's what I'm used to, so I live with it. As far as I'm concerned, I can only keep on doing things as I have for years.

The song abruptly cuts off as the CD player shuts down. The batteries are dead – I'll have to replace them sooner or later. I let my eyes wander around the empty bedroom and fix on my backpack. Homework?

Might as well. It's not like I've got anything better to do.

Fin
>>>
Owari! Probably crappy, no action whatsoever, Shinji might be really OOC (sorry if he is! ;_;). >_ I had to keep it short because I wasn't sure of the maxium words I could use (I think it was 2000). I really do feel like this, and I was writing sort of pissed, so this might have turned out weird. And I was trying to pour my feelings out without weirding out the judges and the teacher too much ^_^;. I'm not used to writing really short o_O. I'm not planning to put the original version up: if you've read it (chances are you haven't :P) you'll recognize this.

Waigh, for some reason, I kept spelling Misato as "Misator". >_ If there's any spelling mistakes or you find any mistakes (like, I left in the original characters' names), please inform me! Reviews are appreciated too, even if they're flames ^.^

Well, guess that's all I want to say. Suggestions, reviews, flames, threats, whatever, feel free to e-mail me at shampoo_famira@yahoo.com or AIM me at S Duo Maxwell 02. Feedback is greatly appreciated (such as that I'm not totally sure Asuka's the Second Child). Thanks for reading. ^_^

- Famira Damaris
*Yamcha fan
*Yaoi/Yuri supporter
*Glomper of Chang Wufei, Bright Noah, and Char Aznable