Open your Eyes
Red waves crashed against white sand.
He could feel his fingertips dig into the flesh of her neck while his thumbs pressed into her throat; the lifeless eye stared at him wantonly.
Anger, hatered, love, sadness, all these churned in his mind as he felt her windpipe begin to collapse.
Something warm on his cheek.
The words rung in his mind. His grip slackened.
The hand softly caressed his cheek as he stared in disbelief at the red headed girl, the girl that had denied him at every turn; the girl that said she 'hated' him. His tears slipped down his face splashing on to hers'.
He let go of her neck.
He balled up against her chest in a strangled sob.
She looked down at the quivering mass of boy on her stomach.
"I feel sick."
A Genjoe Alternate Universe Production.
This is inspired by the Events of 'Evangelion'
I am not the creator, or at least not of this amazing series, perhaps the universe though….
No profit has seen its way to my hands in regard to this fic,
so please don't sue this broke ass cracker for having too much
Enjoy the show.
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His mind wrenched with white hot pain.
Eva, Asuka, Rei…
Shinji hit the hard ground wet.
His shoulder throbbed with a dull pain. He tried to reach for it only to find his arms would not respond.
He didn't remember falling, or the beach being so tough.
"Hold him!" That voice, he knew that voice.
Why isn't she dead?
Asuka. The girls tear streaked face flashed in his mind.
Shinji felt rough hands pin his unresponsive arms that were made of lead. "Get her out of here!"
He struggled to open his eyes.
Light flooded in blinding him in the blurry world.
A fuzzy slash of red.
Asuka, I'm sorry, I couldn't do it.
I failed again.
"Shigure, call Maya! Tell her we've made a breakthrough, and call the boy's father!" The female voice called again.
Who's voice was it?
That was the voice.
"What's the fathers' name?" Another voice, a man's voice.
Why wouldn't Shigure know fathers name?
"Gendo Ikari! It'll be in his file on my desk!" Dr. Akagi.
What's happening to me?
Blackness claimed him.
Shinji's eyes cracked open at the sound of the droning insect as he observed an all too familiar ceiling. He attempted to move his limbs to push himself up on the bed only to find that they felt raw and heavy. His throat was sore and lips were chapped. His eyes stung from the bright light pouring through the large window to his left.
His eyes adjusted to the light, he glanced out the window.
A play ground.
The swings silently swayed in an unseen gentle breeze outside the tall windows. The polls that held the swings stood cheerily in vibrant reds an yellows, while a slide further down shouted its cool blues and gleaming silver metal.
Shinji lay in his bed. A confused expression settled on his face as he stared at the epitome of serenity.
Silence stood as a pillar.
The door to his room clicked and creaked open to admit a blonde woman too absorbed in her reading to notice that the occupant of the room lie awake looking at her through lethargic half lidded eyes.
The woman glanced at the clock on the wall behind her and began scribbling on her clipboard that was loud in the silence of the still room. She then grabbed a rolling chair residing next to the wall and the crook of the door.
The ball Barings and rollers thundered through Shinji's eardrums making him cringe, small clinks and metallic clanks were almost a train wreck in his ears.
She stopped at the end of the bed.
She folded her legs causing a slight zipping sound through her pantyhose as they scraped together. She continued to write in earnest on her clipboard. The pen chiseled its way through the unseen document. Small pauses would offer a slight reprieve to his ears, but soon started again with each of the fresh scribbles.
The writing stopped.
Slowly the woman looked up to see the semiconscious boy gazing at her from his resting place.
She looked expectantly at his still form.
"…Your writings too loud…"
Carefully she unfolded her legs and stood from the rolling stool.
Small clink went through the chair with the slight movement.
Never taking her eyes from the young Japanese boy she walked to the counter and laid the clipboard down with a soft scrape and clack. Her heels clogged sharp in contrast to the almost deafening silence that permeated the room. After several steps the clogging sounds stopped at the side of his bed.
Feebly Shinji tried to turn his head, but was only successful in directing his sore eyes to the blonde woman.
Carefully she bent down till he could smell the powerful aroma of cigarettes and perfume. Unable to stop himself he took a deep breath of the strange yet arousing mix of scents.
The boys' vision was filled with the emerald green of the blonde doctors' eyes. "Shinji… what's my full name?"
What the hell kind of question was that?
Was she coming on to him?
Shinji thought with a tad disbelief, but after a lethargic moment surmised it was probably a memory test of some kind; might account for why things didn't look so bad outside or his confused state of memory.
"Your name is Dr. Ritsuko Akagi, head of project-E, and one of my superior officers." His voice hoarsely rasped with bits of phlegm and dry mouth.
Slowly the blonde woman stood, her eyes never leaving the tired boys. Confusion knit across her face as she stared at him.
Shinji would have normally felt unnerved at the woman's behavior, but was too confused and dazed to notice or care.
The doctor gave the boy an appraising look before grabbing up her clipboard and hurrying to the door. The Mechanisms for the latch were sharp and clear in Shinji's ear as he watched the doctor's coat flutter; leaving the room.
The door slowly shut on its delayed hinge before thundering its closure.
He lay there contemplating the woman's behavior before the heaviness of his mind and eyes worked to drift him into a gentle sleep.
The crossing siren grew louder and louder. Its fever pitch almost deafening till it past and faded to nothing.
Small gaps and uneven rail spikes shuddered through the narrow passenger car.
The car was empty.
Shinji sat alone looking out to the setting sun on the city. The light blinded him in its amber hues.
Further up the line the cars darkened to black. The blackness washed over him leaving only the rhythmic thump of the rails and hum like rake of metal against metal that droned with the movement of the train.
The light shattered the darkness coming out of the tunnel, once again bathing the train in orange tones.
But he was no longer alone.
Her face was obscured black by the light, but he'd recognize the red mane with those A-10 neural connectors anywhere. She sat in her school uniform facing his direction. If she was looking at him he couldn't tell, though Shinji had the distinct impression that her sapphire eyes were boring into his own downcast cobalt eyes.
All these flashed through the boys mind as his name appeared in his head.
Shinji tried to cover his ears, but found that it did not stop the images or feelings. Or her words.
… Shinji, why did you leave me?...
I'm sorry Asuka, I failed. I couldn't save you. He glanced up at the figure hidden in the blinding light of the sun. Her form sent sprawling branches of light in all directions around her giving menace to the quiet words that echoed in the you boys brain. Her voice seemed almost…'lost'… Like a child speaks when they can't find their parent in a store or at the zoo.
…Why did you leave?…
The voice again thundered in his minds ear. Shinji shook his head violently back and forth as he tried to expel the feelings and words that threatened to burst from his very skull.
His knuckles turned white.
He tore at his head as another crossing siren crescendo by the train.
The thudding of the wheels added to the frenzy of noise as he felt his psyche begin to crack under the pressure.
Shinji shot forward as he woke.
His movement forward was to be caught in someone's warm embrace.
"Shhh, it's okay Shinji, I'm here, it's okay now." The voice was warm and pleasant, and male, he didn't know who it was, but he brought his arms up in thanks to weakly hug the man in return. The man rubbed Shinji's back in a motion that was soothing bleeding all the tension out of the young boy's muscles. Shinji notice that the windows were now dark and the stars shone through gaps in the veil of clouds the sky held; he must have slept most of the day away, oh well, it's not like he had anywhere to go.
Not since Rei.
Not after that.
Shinji's mind drifted back to the present.
The man's strong hands felt good on his tender back. The simple up and down motion drew the soreness right out of the young pilots skin making him feel heavy enough that he was sure he'd fall back to sleep again. Shinji noticed the gentle prickle of stubble on the side of the scalp as the man hummed into Shinji's ear. Taking a breath the boy caught the strong woodsy scent from the man with a light touch of tobacco giving the young Ikari the impression of a campfire.
Did everyone take up smoking?
His mind blanked of everything, but the simple sensation of the strong caress. The familiar sent and the smooth rumble of the humming voice were all that occupied the tired third child's' mind.
Taking another breath the scent drew his addle mind to figure out who was holding him.
Who was it that felt that he deserved such tenderness?
He wasn't worth this kindness.
Not after what he'd done.
Not after he defiled Asuka.
Not at the end of the world.
But the man being so kind heard none of Shinji's deprecating thoughts as he continued with his rhythmic movements.
Opening his eyes Shinji looked to the back of the dim room with only the lightest touch of a lamp near his bed illuminating its far wall. Looking down as best he could his eyes caught sight of light brown plaid flannel. Past the arch of the man's back all Shinji could see was the white tile of the floor that also seemed to have been under the spell the dark had cast upon the rooms white features.
The man's movements stopped at the light wheeze that came from the exhausted boy.
After a moment the man returned to stroking the boy's back with just a touch slower tempo than he had been. The man remained quiet leaving Shinji with a nagging feeling he should say something else, the man then spoke in a rumbled whisper. "For what Shinji?"
The voice made the third child's ears twitch with familiarity, but not enough to trigger his slow mind. Shinji breathed deep as it was difficult to speak with his sore vocal cords, "For being so kind to me…"
Shinji felt and heard the older man chuckle causing his stubble to poke the boy's face, but he didn't mind, someone wanted to be close to him.
And for that he was grateful.
The man gave Shinji's sweat soaked hair a quick ruffle with his strong hands, making the lonely boy nuzzle against the man's flannel shoulder.
The two sat there in the darkness quietly appreciating each others company.
Feeling himself doze he slumped into the man's shoulder.
Shinji felt his weigh shift to his back causing him to wake from his momentary slumber to look blurrily at the man's face. The shape was nagging at the young boys mind but couldn't get his vision to clear enough; focusing harder the third child blinked his eyes in concentration to at least see who his benefactor was.
His vision cleared.
Oh, how he wish it hadn't.
"AH! GET AWAY FROM ME! AH!"
The man flinched at the boy's sudden shriek of terror but, soon found himself fending off weak, earnest kicks and, slaps as the boy tried to get him away.
Shinji tore at the man with all his might, but his beleaguered limbs lacked the power to push the horror away. His cries made his voice horse and it cracked under the strain of his plight. "Shinji what's wrong!" The man called trying to get a hold of his stick like arms.
Shinji renewed his efforts and wailed louder hopping that it would either drive the man away or wake him from his nightmare. "GET AWAY!"
The nurse burst into the room slashing the far end of the tile with bright light. "What's happening?" The attendant looked on as the man finally restrained the boy. "I don't know! He just started screaming and telling me to get away!"
The nurse put a hand to the terrified boys head as he fought the man's stronger grip. Placing her hands on his neck and looking to his heart monitor she settled on the man holding the third child down. "Stay here I'm gonna get a sedative!"
Shinji watched the man turn and follow the nurse out then whipped his head back to Shinji causing him to scream more. "Shinji what's wrong!"
The third child could only look on in terror and scream as the visage of Gendo Ikari looked down upon him with a worried expression. Time and time again Shinji tried to will his mind to wake from the nightmare.
No matter how hard he struggled though, Gendo Ikari, the Supreme Commander of NERV, his father, would not leave his eyes.
And so he screamed.
The noisy insects chirp filled the air muffled only by the glass; once again flooded by bright light.
Shinji opened his eyes looking again at the cheerful playground. The swing still swayed in a light breeze that remained invisible but kept pushing the child pendulum with a light rocking.
Was last night a dream? Did he really see his father?
Thinking if his memories were merely a stress induced nightmare the boy couldn't shake the sense of déjà vu that came with the carbon copy scene before him.
A light noise to his right caught the boy's sensitive ears. It was a soft rhythmic noise.
Turning his head a little the noise became more recognizable.
Using what strength he had the third child forced his head to flop toward the noise.
Shinji flinched a bit at what greeted his sight, but after seeing that the person was asleep allowed himself to study the familiar yet alien person before him.
Gendo Ikari, sat slumped in an arm chair his head resting against the ball of his fist while a small line of drool snaked its way from the corner of his stubble mouth. In all the elder Ikari's snores weren't that loud; just a wheeze that shifted across the bed ridden boy's ears. As the Eva pilot observed his commander he noted the lack of normal attire that constituted the most feared man on earth. Gone was the crimson turtleneck and black dress uniform and in its place sat a rough yet humble man wearing a brown plaid shirt that he first saw him in when he woke and a faded pair of blue jeans littered with patches.
Was this stereotypical image of a working man his father? How long was he out that the Supreme Commander of NERV wore the clothes of the common. Looking closer the third child also noted much to his shock that the thick jaw line bearded was gone and after a moment of searching could not find the dark tinted glasses the contained the cold eyes that so often had sneered down at him.
What had happened?
What was going on?
"I see you're awake…"
With strength born of fear the startled young pilot shot his head to the origin of the voice.
At the foot of his bed sat Fuyutsuki Kozo who closed the small paper back novel he'd been reading.
The Vice Commander of NERV?
Shinji thought back to the few times he'd seen the man.
He didn't dislike the old scarecrow, but felt some apprehension due to how close he was to his father whose image was still in question at the moment.
The boy's brow knit as the old man watched him, almost studying his reaction to his ancient presence.
The two stared at one another.
The thin old man extracted himself from the stool he'd been sitting on and drug it over to the boy's bed side. The scraping of the rattling metal was hard on his ears but did not cause him to wince as the doctor had.
The old man's steel eyes bore into Shinji's sore blue ones.
He smiled, "Heard you kinda freaked out last night." His tone was rough with age, but pleasant as crow's feet creased the corners of mans eyes. Looking down, Shinji found it hard to meet the old mans gaze; he noticed the Vice Commanders lack of uniform much like his father. Instead a white button up shirt with pressed lines draped the man's frame while brown slacks gave the confused boy the impression of an old-folks home resident.
Shinji looked back to the aged man.
He was greeted again with the fossils scrutinizing stare.
"The nurse said you didn't even recognize your own father." Fuyutsuki smiled as he continued. "He's been worried about you ya know, watched you the whole night." The old man looked down and grimaced more at his paper back book, "Well I guess it's only natural to be confused as long as you've been out."
Again Shinji's brow drew down.
Coughing a bit and clearing his throat the Eva pilot used his small strength and forced his mouth to move. "C-commander, what's happened? How long was I out?" The boy asked hoping that the old man would ease his scattered understanding.
The grey haired old man raised his eyebrow at the boy before him. "I've always asked for respect from you Shinji, but I don't think 'Commander' is necessary…"
This left the young Ikari all the more dumbfounded. He watched as the man played with his book looking down before looking up with sad eyes. "As for how long you've been out… I … I'll leave that question to your father." The frail old man could no longer look at Shinji as the young Eva pilot saw strained moisture make its ways past the old mans crows feet.
"Com- Fuyutsuki-san, why are you crying?" Shinji asked the sobbing man, the question seemed to only fuel the man's plight. After a moment of nerve wracking sobs the brown haired boy's eyes widened as he found himself thrown into a strong bear-hug from the old man who didn't seem like he'd be letting go anytime soon. "Thank god you're okay, Thank god!"
This was getting the boy nowhere, all his question seemed to go unanswered and daze him even more. Why were his father and the Vice Commander so different now? One had abandoned him in his childhood and the other had rarely shown interest in his existence.
While these thoughts and the awkwardness of the situation plagued him he could not deny the comfort he felt from the man. The young Ikari focused on the smell of the old mans after shave feeling a nagging familiarity much like the scent that came from when his father held him as he first woke. Shinji had to shake his head at that though and glanced over to the sleeping man who was still snoring lightly while the grey haired man wept against him.
As he focused on the warm embrace and tried to Identify the memory of the man's after shave his sensitive ears picked up the clogging of two pairs of heels growing in volume and tempo. Soon a pair of voice floated with the clicking feet, both of which he recognize.
"So he knows your full name, sometimes people in a vegetative state can recount things said around them, I imagine one of your orderlies has to have said it at least once!" A voice was speaking to Ritsuko in a condescending tone as they came closer to his door. "It's not just that! He knew that I was the head of the project!" Ritsuko sounded a bit more flustered as she spoke to the other woman almost pleading.
The door clicked open.
"Ritsuko, you cry wolf now and you're going to be the laughing stock of the medical community," The younger woman sighed exasperated as she held the door open for the faux blonde.
Both women stepped in to come up short as they saw the thin boy being held by the weeping man. "Did we come at a bad time?" Maya asked in a tone laced with concern.
Sniffing a bit the old man loosened his embrace on the bed ridden third child, "No… I'm just…" Fuyutsuki disengaged from Shinji and stood.
Walking a short distance the man stopped at arms length and looked at the faces to the two expectant women.
Shinji raised his eyebrow at the scene seeming strange that Maya and the commander be out of their typical uniforms, but Ritsuko still in hers.
Suddenly the gray haired man bowed deep; shocking the Eva pilot enough to twitch and startle the two doctors.
He stood up a bit looking at their perplexed faces.
The two women looked back waiting.
He descended back into his deep bow, "Thank you for bringing him back to us…"
Maya shifted uncomfortably while Ritsuko blushed and hid it with her clipboard, "That's not really necessary Kozou-san." Maya said after a moment.
The old man continued to bow, "We owe you a great debt…" he looked into Ritsuko's eyes, "Should you ever need anything, you have but to ask." The bottle blonde doctor fidgeted and re ran the words through her head before nodding to the older man, "Thank you Kozou-san."
With that Fuyutsuki stood and looked to the perplexed third child.
"I imagine you want to speak with him," the strange Vice Commander said stepping from the bed to make a path for the two doctors.
Maya strolled up to the side of the bed pulling Ophthalmoscope from her lab coat and plucking the young Ikari's lids open. "Subject Ikari, Shinji." She flashed the light of the optical device in his pupils, switching from one then to the other. "Dilation is normal." Ritsuko frantically scribbled on the clipboard as Maya rattled off her evaluation.
Plugging the stethoscope in her ears Maya pressed the cool metal to his chest causing him to gasp. "Breath normally Mr. Ikari." Glaring at her a bit for the rough treatment he did her bidding.
After a moment the lab coated Ibuki nodded her head, "respiration good."
Ritsuko scribbled more on the clipboard.
Shinji frowned at this; he watched as the short haired tech looked to his heart monitor and rattled off his blood pressure and body temperature. Looking to the head of Project-E Shinji watched with a sense of detachment no longer hearing the calculating and seemingly superior Lieutenant Ibuki command and relay when he'd seen the blonde scientist do it so many times in the past.
Glancing up; Ritsuko caught Shinji's bewildered gaze making her stop in mid scribble to gaze upon the boy's expression.
The two stared at one another for what felt like eons.
"Ritsuko!" The blonde flinched at her called name.
"Yes Ibuki-sama!" she almost snapped into a salute. "Have you been paying attention to what I'm saying? This maybe your project, but I am director of this wing!" Ritsuko bowed to the dark haired woman in shame.
She opened her mouth in apology, but a soft voice stayed her.
"Miss Ibuki, when did you get promoted past Dr. Akagi?" Maya and Ritsuko blinked at the boys' whispered statement. Quickly Maya turned to look at the boy, "I thought that she was in charge of you and the other bridge technician's, what happened that my father and Fuyutsuki? Are they no longer commanders? And what happened to Misato, Rei and Asuka."
Maya flinched at the last name.
Shinji looked around the room at the surprised faces coming from the former Vice Commander rounding to Ritsuko.
Maya looked down at Shinji with a neutral expression and what looked like a hint of suspicion to the third child.
"Shinji… What do you know about Asuka...?" She spoke her words slow and deliberate as one would to small child or someone mentally handicapped.
His brow coming down in frustration and anger, the Eva pilot took a stiff breath and exhaled sharp, "I'm tired of these games! What happened? Why is everyone so different?!" The shouting and numerous voices brought the light snoring senior Ikari out of his exhausted slumber, "Uh, Humr, cough… What's going on?" He said with a stifled yawn.
"Shinji." Maya spoke crisp.
His head snapped back to her as she leaned in close with a look of determination. "What do you know about Asuka?" she spoke more firm.
"Oh, you're awake again Shinji… Kozou-san! I didn't know you came in!"
"You see Maya I told you! He knows!"
"Quite! It's probably just a coincidence!"
"I came in this morning; I saw you sleeping and thought it better not to wake you…"
The noise swam about the third Childs head as he was asked the same questions and strange familiar faces held simple conversations.
Asuka's voice boomed in his head.
The noise was deafening
He clamped his hands over his ears in hopes to shut out the noise.
The room fell silent. All eyes fixed on the thin boy lying in the hospital bed.
Cicadas chirped in the sudden silence that the young Ikari demanded.
"Tell me about Asuka, Shinji…" Maya cut the veil of quiet.
He fixed a hard gaze on Maya. "Asuka Langley Souryue, is the designated pilot of Eva Unit-02"
Maya's eyes grew like saucers, "What does she look like!" she asked abandoning all formal etiquette invading his personal space.
Shinji took in her strange demeanor with raised eyebrows. "She the only red head in the city that I know of. Maybe the only German in the city for that matter."
Shock gaped across the former techs mouth while her dark eyes looked crazed at the young Eva pilot.
Maya went to sprint from the bed to hit the call button on the wall, when a hand grabbed her wrist.
Looking down to the wrist she slowly glanced up and caught the hard cold eyes of the Eva pilot.
He whispered in a soft voice, "… Answer some of my questions…"
He loosened his grip on the woman.
"…What happened to us…?"
A/N: Why is Shinji in the Hospital? Why is everyone so different? Where is the rest of the Eva cast?
To those of you that are worried about my Pandora fic, this is just something I've been working on for a while to tide you over while I work more on it. Spelling and corrections are ghastly in this I know. Having problems finding a beta-reader. Past that let me know what you think!