Disclaimer: Neon Genesis Evangelion and The Dresden Files are the properties of Hideko Anno and Jim Butcher respectively. So don't get mad at me for making a fanfic with their stuff.
Back in 2000 I was a private detective. I did the standard PI stuff, found stuff people had lost, or more often, found people that were lost. I was even listed in the phonebook under "Wizards". The concept of the supernatural then was laughable by most, blissful ignorance and all. Monsters under the bed and the boogeymen that haunted summer campgrounds were all fiction, and my clients thought I was just using a gimmick to drum up business.
Well the Katsuragi Expedition shot that misconception full of holes didn't they.
There are 7 Laws of Magic. #7: "Thou shalt not seek beyond the Outer Gates."
It's bad enough when a wizard does it. I don't need to explain what happens when vanilla mortals try it. The fact that they did it in Antarctica meant that those who should have prevented it didn't know about it until it was too late. At least they were able to contain the damage somewhat.
Still, three billion is an awful big number.
Once most of the world had managed to start getting themselves back on their feet, the people in charge realized that something like this might happen again. The supernatural was REAL, and while humanity had taken a pretty solid hit, we still had numbers and a penchant for violence on our side. That's when the White Council stepped in.
You probably haven't heard of the White Council. After all, wizards have been generally keeping a low profile for centuries. "Burn the witch" and all. Vanilla mortals get a little twitchy at the idea of ordinary looking people being able to blow up buildings without explosives. But this time the Council decided that they needed to get some information to the world's head honchos so they can do something besides keep their heads in the sand.
Problem is, the world is driven by technology nowadays.
Wizards and technology go together like peanut butter and motor oil… on a good day. Something about wizards tends to make anything electronic go buggy in short order. I personally can kill a hard drive at 50 yards without blinking hard.
That meant setting up a teleconference was out and a face-to-face talk was a bad idea no matter how you look at it. So our advice was sent out as nice, safe, anonymous documents. They were probably filed away by "top men" as soon as they arrived. The Council was pretty busy trying to keep everything together with all the power vacuums Impact had created on our side of the street anyway. So nothing really changed. Wizards kept operating (mostly) behind the scenes against That Which Went Bump in the Night.
But, after the first monster came out of sea and went toe to claw with a 200 ft-tall purple robot, it became obvious that someone had taken us seriously. The White Council decided they needed a person to keep an eye on NERV. Someone who could think outside the box, someone who the Council could wash their hands of in case things got messy.
And someone who didn't have enough sense to hide under a rock until it was all over.
So that's how I got the job. For those of you who've been living in a survival shelter since Second Impact, my name is Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden, Special Inspector for NERV. Don't invoke that name lightly.
I'm a wizard. We're touchy on those sorts of things.
Just because it was close to the witching hour didn't mean a wizard didn't need to sleep like a normal person. Harry stumbled though the apartment, grumbling to himself at the insistent ringing.
"Yeah, yeah…" as he picked up the receiver. "Meddle not in the affairs of wizards, for they are subtle and quick to anger."
"Dresden", the unfamiliar voice said over the phone. "Your presence is required at NERV."
"Who is this?"
"Expect a call from local law enforcement shortly." The caller hung up.
Hell's Bells. Cryptic calls like that usually meant something very bad was happening, and more often than not I was going to be at the center of it. I had barely put the receiver back on the hook when it began ringing again.
"Dresden, you free?"
"Hi Murphy. As a matter of fact my night is apparently completely free now. Let me guess, you've finally succumbed to my charm and want to me to ravish you until dawn."
A choking sound came over the line. "Not funny Harry. It's Marcone. He's dead. And it's definitely from the spooky side."
"I'll be there in 20 minutes."
23 minutes later…
"Gentleman" Johnny Marcone had cultured an image as a highly respected businessman over the last few years. Respected enough to gain a position as Director of NERV-Chicago, and had exceeded even SEELE's expectations as Head of North American Resource Management. Apparently the Committee didn't care if he was a murderous monster.
His office was quite large and empty. The only furniture a massive desk behind which sat an office chair big enough to pass itself off as the throne of a Galactic Overlord. The whole room was designed to intimidate the hell out of anyone who entered, all spotless in matte black, save for the police tape at the doorway and the odd discoloration seeping out from behind the desk.
"I may never drink orange juice again." Harry said bleakly.
"You and me both." Captain Karrin Murphy, head of SI, had seen and fought beings that most people would consider pure fantasy. The general public still bought the lie that Second Impact was the result of an asteroid and not a bunch of people messing with Things Man Was Not Meant To Know. There were no such things as ghosts, vampires, faeries and werewolves. Even the recent news footage from Japan was considered "a ridiculous hoax by NERV for additional funding".
"You're sure it's him?"
"I saw the security footage. Marcone just... melted for no obvious reason. At least nothing the cameras could pick up."
"Gard and Hendricks say anything?" motioning to Marcone's chief bodyguards who were being questioned at the other end of the hall.
"Gard said Marcone asked them to leave him alone for an hour. She had protested, Hendricks had grunted, but they did leave. When they came back, they found… what was left. Surveillance tapes confirmed it."
"Veil?" Harry muttered to himself.
A voice from behind the huge desk perked up, "I doubt it, Obi-Wan. If someone slipped in here somehow, they're better than me."
"Grasshopper, how the cop life suiting you?"
SI's forensic specialist / paranormal consultant Molly Carpenter gathered her evidence kit, which included some rather unorthodox looking gear and walked over. My apprentice had taken over my old gig with SI several months ago, since my wizarding stuff had been taking me farther abroad lately. It seemed to fit her well. Her magical talents weren't really suited for the high stress environment of the Wardens. "Boring, with occasional moments of utter weirdness like this one. Whoever or whatever managed to… tang… Marcone did it so clean I can't find a trace of how they did it. Ok boys, I'm done here." she motioned for the coroners to come in, noting that one of them carried a mop and bucket.
The three of them stepped into a side office. Harry gave an almost imperceptible nod, and Molly made a subtle hand gesture.
"OK, any cameras or mikes in here are spoofed. What's going on Obi Wan?"
Harry started, "Remember this is Marcone we're talking about. He was expecting something obviously. He might have thought he could handle it alone, but more likely he wanted to keep them..." tilting his head down the hall, "out of the loop. Which is pretty odd now that I think about it."
"On WHAT might have done this? No. Why seems easier though. This has the feel of an internal power play gone bad. Marcone didn't answer to anyone but himself, but he still had to work with the people who put him in charge here. That means looking higher up the corporate food chain is a good place to start. Plus, someone had called me right before you did Murph, They wanted me here for a reason."
"Great, should we start prepping for the Apocalypse then?"
"Let's hope not."
The Green Hornet made a few unpleasant noises as Harry pulled up to his apartment building, the WWII-era Jeep was rugged, but still only ran properly 8 days in 10. He missed the Blue Beetle, but after Mexico had ceased being a sovereign nation his mechanic had told him parts for it were just too hard to come by. Pre-dawn light was beginning to filter in, and as Harry got out of the car, the grey Warden cloak-wearing figure unveiled himself outside his door.
"Great, things have officially gone to Hell." Harry thought to himself.
"Morgan. At least this night probably can't get worse."
"A death of a Signatory of the Accords is a serious matter, Dresden. Even scum like Marcone." Morgan limped a little crossing the street to meet him. He'd had it after nearly dying during an attempt by, what he still insisted was, "a rogue individual and most certainly not a member of an organized conspiracy" to pretty much mind control and wipe out the White Council. Call it what you will. "So the Council has made some arrangements for you."
"Really? I seriously doubt this is an Accords matter. It doesn't take a wizard to know NERV is probably involved in this."
"Nevertheless Dresden, I have my orders, and I'm giving you yours. Insubordination isn't something to be treated lightly."
"Neither is being sent on a suicide run. Considering how much high-tech is there I wouldn't get within 10 miles without messing something up, and probably getting shot many, many times. Besides, isn't Tokyo-3 Ancient Mai's back yard?"
"I'm aware of that, but the Merlin was insistent that YOU perform the investigation." Morgan pulled out a large envelope, "Here's the information the Council has gathered, and your cover story."
Grimacing, Harry took the proffered papers and willed his amulet to glow so he could look over them, eyes slowly widening in disbelief. "Special Inspector to NERV? Stars and Stones, how the Hell am I supposed to pull that off?"
"This should help. McCoy told me to give it to you." Morgan held out an old-fashioned silver pocket watch, with a rather intricate looking sigil on the front face. "He said it would suppress your aura that makes electronics fail without interfering with your magic."
Harry thought for a moment. He'd crafted a spell like that before, but it was delicate stuff, and its very nature precluded him slinging any mojo around. If something like this could be made easily…
"Before you ask, he said it was extremely difficult to make this, that he'd been working on it for over 20 years. And that it will only work for you."
A personal Anti-Tech Field suppressor? And Ebenezer had been working on this for how long? The implications resounded in Harry's mind. "Did he say how it works?"
"No, though he did mention it serves as a battery in a pinch."
Dresden took the watch from Morgan. Immediately he felt a faint tug of power from the device. He flipped it open, the dial of an old style Mickey Mouse watch staring at him, and an inscription on the inside of the cover. 'Best of luck Hoss. E.'
"What if I say no?"
"Your own personal sense of duty. And, as much as I may dislike you, you're probably the one person who can do this. Regardless of our past history, I have come to accept the fact that you are, and have been, serving in the Council's best interests."
"Don't get all gushy on me Morgan. Fine, when do I need to leave?"
"The Over The Rainbow sets sail at 0900 Pacific Time today. Warden Ramirez is expecting you within the hour. "
"Short notice. What about if something crops up here?"
"I'm under orders to serve as Warden for the Chicago area until you get back."
Harry inwardly grimaced, "Swell, anything else I should know?"
"Most of the information we have is in the dossier. Ramirez will provide your documentation. Officially, you're joining the escort for the Second Child and Unit-02 to Tokyo-3."
"Yes." Morgan's face was unreadable. "Apparently those giant robots are driven by teenagers." And with that, Donald Morgan turned and stiffly walked off, disappearing behind a veil.
Things started failing into place then. Marcone would go to extraordinary lengths regarding children's welfare. Asking, or more likely forcing, a kid to fight a battle like that would have been untenable to him. If Marcone had found out, well… killing him fast would be the only answer they had available to them. Sending children into a war, even though the White Council had had to do much the same in recent years, didn't sit well with Harry either.
But that could wait. A few days on the ocean would allow him to start thinking of a plan. Right now he had to let Karrin and Molly know he'd be out of town for a few weeks, and try to convince them not to kill Morgan in the meantime.
Harry walked up the stairs to his apartment. He'd barely gotten in before a 30-pound furry blur shouldered past and threatened to send him tumbling back down onto the sidewalk. Mister had always been like that. Even now, he was rather spry for a cat pushing 20. Then again… there was probably a good reason for that, as Mister scampered to the upstairs apartment.
Back when Harry had first moved in, Old Mrs. Spunkelcrief had been happy to rent out the basement. She had died in her sleep the day after Impact, and Harry had been a little surprised when she'd named him as the owner of the building in her will. His other neighbors, the Willoughby's, had moved to Iowa to be with family shortly thereafter, leaving him as currently the sole resident and owner of the brownstone. The sole human resident that is.
The upstairs door opened easily. Mister, of course, was already inside, curled up on the lap of the woman sitting in the room yawning. Harry peeked inside. That she had seen better days was an understatement. Her hair, once a fiery red, was now dull, streaked with gray, and hung over her face like a shroud. Her eyes haunted and hollow, staring at the far side of the universe for all Harry knew.
No response of course. It had been a very long time, at least for mortals, since she had said anything. The Handmaiden of the Winter Court, and pre-Impact one of the most dangerous and wicked of the Faerie Folk, had been in a catatonic state for nearly 15 years. The occasional faint titter of insane laughter and her stroking Mister was about all she ever did.
A familiar 12-inch tall figure flittered up to Harry as he stepped inside.
"How is she?"
"The same Za-Lord, as always." Toot-Toot answered somberly.
Wyldfae weren't exactly known for loyalty or devotion to a task pre-Impact. Harry had more or less initially bribed Toot into a working relationship with regular pizza, despite the fact that some people might compare that arrangement as the same as a drug dealer and his junkies. Afterward though, with the creation of the Neverwas (It was easier to say than the Wasteland of the NeverNever) the Wee Folk had become… rather grim.
Earth had taken a beating but Humanity had more or less adapted. When you're dealing with nigh-omnipotent, nigh-immortals who basically were in the same position as Princess Leia watching Alderran being blasted into rubble, catatonia was probably the best result. That sort of change is something only the young can recover from.
"I'm going to be gone for a while. Hopefully it won't more than a few weeks."
"Dres.. den? Is .. that you … my dear boy?"
The voice startled both of them. Even Mister perked his head up.
"Lea? Godmother? Can you hear me?" Harry asked anxiously.
Lea's voice was barely a whisper as Harry knelt do next to her to hear.
"Of… course … sweet child… You go … to the Black Vault … to help fight … the White Legion. To heal One… is to save us All… And the Children… shall show… the way."
Lea's head sagged down, the effort to speak had utterly drained her.
"Lea? LEA?" Harry checked to she if she was still breathing, panic swelling in his voice, "Toot! Is she going to be all right?"
The little faerie had a smile on his face I hadn't seen in a very long time. "I believe so Za-Lord. This is truly a good sign. Worry not, the Guard and I shall care for and defend her to the bitter end in your absence."
Harry took a moment to center himself and calm down. A wizard who didn't keep a good reign on his emotions tended to make things explode. Like buildings. "Great. When I went to bed tonight, I was expecting the world to keep on spinning. Now, I'm about to go half a world away to a land of giant monsters and robots because a man, who I think was a stellar example of the kind of inhuman monsters people are capable of being, is dead and some graybeards who half the time think I'm Emperor Palpatine have decided that Harry Dresden is the one person who can fix this f_ked-up situation." He threw his hands up in frustration and headed to the door. "I need to pack."
The old basement apartment had been converted into his and Molly's lab, She was still technically his apprentice, though now that Molly had her own place, she didn't come by much. Mouse was already staying with her, he had never liked Lea anyway. Of course the big lug could just have liked Grasshopper more. He walked over to the old mini-kitchen and the access door to the sub-basement. There was one thing Harry knew he'd need to take with him, and the one thing he didn't want anyone else to possibly get a hold of in his absence.
Harry heard pages rustling from below. "Bob?"
"Hai! Ai no chikara wa anata ni shōri o shimasu!"
"I'm NEVER going to forgive Molly for how she's corrupted you." he grumbled as he started down the stairs. His tone switched to something from a badly dubbed Asian adult film, "Bob, I'm going need you long time now."
Bob was Harry's ace in the hole. A spirit of air and intellect housed in the skull of a pre-Reniassance French sorcerer, he had served as a database, technical advisor, and sounding board for wizards for centuries. If there was something magical he didn't know something about, chances are nobody had been crazy enough to try it, and Bob had served under some pretty insane and evil warlocks before. When Harry had taken possession of him, most of the negative aspects for his personality had been locked away, leaving a wisecracker with a taste for Harlequin romance novels.
That was before Molly had accidentally left some manga at her old lab desk.
He had taken to it like a duck to water. The obvious benefit to Harry though was that his Japanese was perfect. His conversations over the years had allowed Harry to be able to now clumsily speak the language, and it had even filtered over to Molly's preference for her spellcasting. Of course, Bob was now a raging otaku, and Harry was planning on taking him to Tokyo-3, where they were fighting monsters with giant robots.
"Somewhere in Heaven's bureaucracy is a file marked Harry Dresden, Universe's Chew Toy. It's probably right next to Peter Parker." he bemused to himself. "Hey, time to get your head in the game! You've just won the Super Bowl and you're going to Disneyland!"
"Disneyland's underwater last time I looked at a map you baka gaijin."
"Yeah well… I never got to go either. But I'm leaving on a trip to Tokyo-3 in half an hour, and unfortunately, circumstances indicate that I'm going to need you while I'm there."
If Bob had eyes they would have rolled out of their sockets at that point. The excited, incoherent babble that started issuing from the skull just made Harry cradle his face in his palm.
"That reminds me, I'm going to need your 'public' outfit, you remember where I put it?"
Bob stopped his giddy self-banter for a moment. "Fourth shelf, right hand side, blue pill bottle" before resuming into a chant of what sounded like "ohboyohboyohboyohboyohboy" to Harry.
"Right, thanks." Harry grabbed the small bottle and opened it. Inside was a molar. One of Bob's to be precise. The tiny spell inscriptions Harry had added to it would enable Bob to veil himself with an image of a silver robotic head and pass himself off as some sort of toy. As he popped the tooth into place, the holomancy took hold. It was definitely less creepy anyway.
"Alright 'Widget'", recalling an old comic book character that he had based the illusion image from, "time to go. Try not to have an aneurysm."
The last thing he did before leaving was call Murphy and fill her in on the new developments.
"Their Section 2 decided to pull some internal jurisdictional bullshit on us and the Feds. We're out of the loop now. Bastards."
"No argument there Murph. I've got a bad feeling someone's playing me and is already 10 moves ahead."
"I know it's difficult Harry, but sometimes it's OK to say No."
"Either I or someone close to me would likely end up like Marcone if I did. Someone wants me in the game, and is willing to pull a lot of strings to do it."
"Be careful. I can't cover your ass from 10,000 miles away."
"Like I'd want anyone else to? One last thing, Did Molly come up with any idea on how they might have done it? I've been a bit distracted."
"No, in fact she told me she was positive that 'a wizard [I]didn't[/I] do it'."
"Figures. Stay safe."
Harry hung the phone up. Molly was right in that respect. Nonhumans could work magic without messing up technology if they wanted to, but both of them had been around black magic enough to recognize the psychic residue it left behind. Whatever had killed Marcone, it wasn't a spell… or probably anything magical for that matter. Even Bob hadn't known of anything that could do that. Which meant that he had to go to Tokyo-3 to find some answers.
The cab pulled up outside, the Way to Nevada was only a few miles from his place, and the actual walk took less than a minute. Even now he'd probably beat Carlos there. He took a moment to look at his home, noting a few dim lights flickering near the roof as Toot and the Guard continued their vigil over Lea.
He wondered if he'd ever see it again.
Rush hour hadn't begun in earnest yet and it only took 10 minutes for the cab to get to the shopping plaza. Most of the shops hadn't opened yet for the day, only the big 24-hour retail chain store, the blue and yellow sign dominating the building's front, had cars in front of it.
Harry stopped for a moment and considered his new watch.
"Nothing like a stress test to see if this thing works." and he strode to the automatic doors.
The greeter blanched slightly. After all, when someone comes walking in the door wearing a hat, black leather duster and carrying a staff and large dufflebag, you have to assume he's probably not there to shop.
"Welcome to Best Buy, sir. Um, I'll have to ask that you leave your personal effects at the service desk while you shop."
Dresden took a moment to look around. No explosions. No sparks erupting. Nothing spontaneously ignited. Even the anti-shoplifting sensors didn't go off. Yesterday, just walking into a place like this would have been like shooting a flare gun into a fireworks factory. He looked at his watch, and nodded approvingly. "Not bad."
"Sorry, but I seem to be late for a very important date!" Then he turned and started heading toward the alley on the far side of the parking lot.
The NeverNever had been a dangerous place before Second Impact. The Ways though were a useful and fast method of long-distance travel for those who knew them and could deal with the occasional wild beastie or hazardous terrain. Impact had changed that somewhat. The beasties were now few and far between, but dealing with them wasn't exactly an option.
Harry reached the end of the alley and touched his pentacle amulet, the red gem in the center whispering to him that there hadn't been any changes since his last trip. "Aparturum" he said quietly, and a gash in reality appeared. Harry quickly stepped through, and closed the Gate behind. No sense in letting anything bleed through unnecessarily. It opened onto a narrow crack at the base of a cliff, the opposite end of the Way was a small cave just up the hill. Still, this route offered a pretty good look at the Neverwas.
The sky was the same, a blanket of angry black thunderheads that never rained, whipped by hurricane winds high above into a constant frenzy. The lurid scarlet sky that was visible through the rare breaks cast a dim glow over the monochrome wastes, punctuated by distant flashes of lightning and the continuous low roar of thunder. Near the ground, the wind was calm though. From the cave entrance at the top of the hill, Harry could see to the horizon, where a black dust cloud began slowly rolling along the valley below.
On her first trip through the Neverwas, Molly had commented it looked like those pictures from the surface of Venus the old Soviet space probes had taken back in the 80's. The analogy was pretty accurate. The backlash of Antarctica being vaporized had all but wiped out the Winter Court. Summer had gone insane, kicking into overdrive and slowly baking the NeverNever into inhospitable desert. That greenhouse effect was true on Earth as well, if less pronounced. Mab's fortress of Arctis Tor was Winter's final bastion, and the Queen of Air and Darkness had apparently used the last of her strength to encase the whole area under a glacier to protect it.
Harry turned and stepped into the cave. Watching a world slowly turn to ash was not something he wanted to dwell on right now.
The Way opened up a few miles outside Las Vegas, and as Harry came out of the old silver mine entrance he saw the large black SUV pulling up the access road. He grinned. He'd beaten Carlos here, and he knew what that meant.
The big Suburban pulled up and Warden Ramirez stepped out from behind the wheel. "Dammit Dresden, you've got to let me in on how you get around so fast!"
"Trade secret 'Los, you know the deal."
"Yeah, yeah." He reached back into the car and pulled out a sack and a cup. Dresden's stomach gurgled audibly. He'd been up for a while now. Food would at least take his mind off things for a bit.
"At least you're easy to get breakfast for. Your usual." Carlos tossed the sack to Dresden. "You know, this'll probably be the last time you eat something from Burger King for a while. I doubt they have any in Japan."
"Mmmmm", nodded Dresden, savoring the still warm biscuit, then swallowed. "You've got a point there." He noted Ramirez hadn't mentioned that whole setup this was likely a kamikaze run yet.
"What I don't understand is how you got suckered into doing this. I mean, it's crazier than… well… crazier than all the other stuff you've pulled off combined. You know you ain't gonna fool anyone into thinking you're some kind of internal affairs spook looking like that you know. Not to mention all the electronics that'll start going haywire when you walks in a room."
"Actually I got a fix for the tech stuff." Harry displayed the watch.
"Hmm, spiffy, what's it do?"
"Apparently makes me vanilla with regards to computers and stuff."
"You're shitting me."
"No lie, I tested it before I got here. Surprised the hell out of me."
"How come you get all the wonderful toys?"
"Because I'm stupid enough to not know when to call in a sick day."
"Got that right. Get in, we gotta swing by Hector's place and get your ID's made. And maybe clean up that look."
His staff was still an oddity, and the duster seemed a little over the top, but otherwise he looked more like Elliot Ness from The Untouchables rather than an extra from El Dorado. He'd had to give up his revolver for a .45 automatic, no real agent would carry a six-shooter as a primary weapon, but at least it was a model he was familiar with. The guards at the gate had given him the standard cursory once over, and he'd passed muster apparently. Now he was at the berth of the supercarrier Over the Rainbow as it was making final preparations to set sail, facing the young officer who'd come out to greet him.
"Permission to come aboard?"
"Special Agent Dresden?"
"That's me, I'm as special as they come."
The man who'd come out to meet him gave Dresden a sour look. "Lieutenant Maxwell Ford. The Captain is rather busy at the moment and officially regrets being unable to welcome you aboard personally. Unofficially, he's informed me that should you interfere with the operations of this ship while you're on board, he has the authority to and I quote: 'strap you to the starboard anchor and dunk you like a donut.' I've been assigned as your aide while onboard. That does not make me your valet, butler, or room service. It does mean that I, or someone that I've assigned, is to be with you at all times while you're out of your quarters. Am I making myself clear?"
"Flippancy will not endear you to anyone Agent Dresden. I suggest you make this easy. It would be a shame if we set sail without you, but we are on a tight schedule and cannot be afforded to turn around because of one man."
Normally, this would invoke a scathing retort. However, Harry was the one in enemy territory without backup right now. Being snarky to a being some might worship as a god is one thing, but this was just an ordinary Navy officer. He could let this slide for now.
"Understood, Lieutenant. If you would show me to my quarters? I've had a long flight in this morning and would like to get some rest before meeting your Captain."
"Hmmph. Welcome aboard then."
The quarters were small and located in an out of the way corridor. It was surprisingly private for being on a ship, considering the normal bustle of crewmen he'd seen as he'd made his way there. At least it wasn't the brig. Harry figured he had a couple of hours before someone would escort him to the Captain, might as well look over those files Morgan had given him.
He flipped open to the personnel records, getting an idea of the kinds of people he'd be dealing with in Tokyo-3.
Commander Ikari, Gendo
Doctorate in Genetics from Kyoto University. Has overseen the NERV facilities of Tokyo-3 since it's inception. Sometimes described as the region's dictator. His primary post-doctorate work was at the Artificial Evolution Laboratory in Hakone, Japan alongside his then wife Yui before her accidental death in 2004…
Harry continued scanning the file, his dislike of the man growing with each sentence. Two lines near the end stood out.
Son - Ikari, Shinji (see separate file)
Legal guardian of Ayanami, Rei (see separate file)
The photo was a wide shot of him at his desk, hands steepled before his face, eyes invisible behind his glasses. Harry noticed the office was similar to Marcone's… or more likely, Marcone had modeled his office after Gendo's.
"Yeah, I'm sure you're a real swell guy Gendo." Harry's voice dripped with sarcasm as he turned to the next file.
Deputy Commander Fuyutsuki, Kozo
Doctorate in Biology from Kyoto University, Masters in Religion from Oxford University. Previously Professor of meta-biology at Kyoto University…
'…A bit of a womanizer while I taught him at Oxford, he was never without a girl on his arm it seemed…'
The personality profile was a surprise. It had been written by Arthur Langtry. The Merlin himself had taught this man in his youth. Harry thought about what the ramifications of that might be and shook his head.
Tokyo-3 Director of Research and Development - Akagi, Ritsuko
Doctorates in Computer Science, Biology and Genetics. Current Head of Project E at Tokyo-3…
"Ugh. You'll be throwing a bunch of technobabble at me I'll bet. Let's see who's next?" Harry muttered, turning the page.
Harry stopped and stared at the name. "No way. Can't be." He flipped to the photo of the young woman. She was a little older than Molly, and the black dress under the red jacket left little to the imagination. He knew her odd purple hair was not a dye job though. Just as he knew those eyes once belonged to a little girl who had seen things no mortal should ever have to see. He looked at the jewelry she wore. Around her neck was a prominent silver cross, drawing attention to her chest. The earrings were more important though, the left silver, the right copper. At first glance they looked like small coins, slightly blackened and warped, as though they had been in a fire. A closer look revealed the faint markings of a pentacle inscribed in each of them, the only remnants of Harry's first shield bracelet to have survived that day.
"Stars and Stones, Misato. What the Hell are you doing here."