Disclaimer – I don't own eva. It owned me from the moment I saw it. I don't own anything that was referenced either.

-XXX-

The alarm sounded and woke Asuka from her deep slumber. She yawned, then tapped the off switch from beneath the protection of her silky sheets. Even like that she was still unable to evade the light that slipped through the window blinds. She groaned.

She tried to get up, but the light blinded her the moment she opened her eyes. She closed them instantly, then rolled into the ball, still debating if it was worth it.

It was one of those mornings when waking up early was pointless. There were no scheduled Angel battles, no synchronization tests or anything significant to her existence. There was only utterly pointless school life with Shinji and the rest of the apes. With exception that was Hikari Horaki, but that was also debatable.

The lack of competition in her class bored her to death. Around the people of her age her dominance was absolute. No one came even close to her grades, and she wasn't even trying anymore. The amount of time she invested in studying kanji was only her good will and good manners. She couldn't care less about their teachers. They could praise her endlessly and it would be meaningless. Good grades achieved nothing.

The school was almost discriminating to someone of her rank and education. Why NERV demanded it was out of her comprehension. Though, she was a professional pilot that would never disobey orders, unlike some wimpy boy who tended to break the rules every time he got the opportunity, and never get scolded for it. It wasn't even surprising that she would get mad at him before even seeing him. It became her daily routine.

She scraped her face against the pillow a few times, then rolled out of bed and onto her feet, still adjusting to the lighting. She moved to her closet, avoiding the trash littering her path. If she got the chance she would make Shinji clean it.

She debated if to use makeup today. No. That was also pointless. The rest of the female population could try-hard with their looks as much as they wanted, but not a single one would get noticed when she was around. Her presence alone was enough to impress both male and female population, and after a while it wasn't even as satisfying as it was before. So what was even the point?

She pulled the comb out of her bottom drawer, along with her school uniform and clean towels. She jumped over few heaps of fashion magazines, dirty socks and books, and reached the doors. She opened them and glanced around the living room. Shinji was making noise at the kitchen, the only place he rightfully belonged to, and Misato was nowhere in sight. Their guardian was probably still sleeping, exhausted from night shift or something like that, if she even reached their home.

She slammed the doors behind her, as hard as sliding doors could be slammed, announcing her presence to the other resident. She went to the bath, not bothering to cross two rooms to greet her roommate. He was now fully aware of her presence, which was enough to remind him to prepare her bento for school, and to hurry up with their breakfast. Reminding him of that was not really necessary because he would do it anyway, however, she felt obligated to put him in his place. Shinji slacking was out of question.

She entered the small bathroom, then closed the doors behind her, locking them in case Shinji felt extra perverted. She left the towels on the stool she could easily reach from the cabin, then turned the wheel for hot water.

The bathroom smelled like Shinji, which meant that he used it first. That didn't bother her that much, however, the fact that Shinji thinks that he can be the fist and get away with it bother her a lot. If he thought that his actions went unnoticed he was terribly wrong. Maybe he did have the most Angel kills, but that was only because he had an advantage of being the first operating pilot, and doing the cowardly last hits in every other battle. He just earned himself a punch.

Unlike school, NERV was a place where she truly belonged. It was a place where she could prove her true worth to the world, and do the things that actually mattered, like beating the other two pilots through the synchronization tests. The First was not even a threat, and her score was almost an insult, but the Third was climbing pretty fast. She knew that he could only beat her score in his dreams, but it was nice to know that there was at least some competition, even if he did like to pretend that it didn't matter to him.

He is always such a hypocrite. He had the best score, but he always acts like it doesn't matter. She knew that he was only faking the good boy image, probably to earn some praise from his father or something. It made her sick to see his smiling face when his score would climb for only few percent, and even more when Misato praised him for it. Asuka knew that he was her favorite, but seeing her display of such an unprofessional favoritism in public was disgusting.

Shinji probably enjoyed all the attention he got from their lovely slob of a guardian. She could even bet that he secretly made an altar to worship her. It was just ridiculous. Just because Misato was older and more physically grown didn't mean that she looked even slightly better than her. Though, it was only natural that simple minded males wouldn't notice a real thing. They were all the same, but if they saw it no one could deny it anymore.

She started to think that locking the doors was a bad idea. No. It was a terrible idea. She got out of the shower and opened them slightly. If Shinji saw her display he wouldn't delude himself with second thoughts about who is the prettiest woman he knew. She only had to count on his pervertedness.

She sat on the stool, crossed her legs and waited. She knew Shinji very well. It would only take him two minutes to come, then she would punch him, playing embarrassment, and send him flying. It might not be the most modest approach, but she would definitely make a point. So, she waited.

She could feel the cold air coming from the small opening. Her body shuddered, but she kept waiting. He would burst in any second now with some lame ass excuse about their breakfast. All boys are the same, and she knew Shinji very, very well.

She could see the steam escaping the room, making the small bathroom a lot colder. What was taking him so long? Should she scream to direct his empty head? No. That would be bad. Even is something did happen Asuka Langley Soryou would never scream and ask for help. That would be unrealistic. She could wait.

Could it be that he left without her? No. That was impossible. Her man-servant was well trained. He would never disobey his mistress, and f he did, he knew that he would suffer the consequences. She was strict with him, it couldn't be helped. If he wasn't punched on a daily basis he might even start to consider them as equals, and that would be ridiculous.

So, what could possibly distract the Third Child? Did he pick a fight with an oven? Not likely. Shinji was unmatched in the kitchen. Could it be that he's just not interested? Nah. That would be ridiculous.

She waited for few more moments. Nothing? That's how you're going to play, Shinji? Fine. He just earned himself yet another punch.

-XXX-

Her entrance in the kitchen startled the Third Child. The phone slipped from his hand, and he dropped the spoon he used for mixing. It was typical male behavior, being unable to do two things at once. She didn't bother to greet him. She just sat, then leaned on her chair, giving him a glare that suggested that he should hurry up with the dish.

Shinji recognized that glare very well. He picked up the phone, then gave an apologetic goodbye to whoever he talked to, and clumsily hanged up. He continued with the dish, only a lot quicker than before, avoiding the eye contact the whole time. It was a proof that her training skills were masterful.

After he was done, he put the plate in front of her, and poured the sauce on her rice. It smelled divinely, and the taste was even better. Though, she would rather die that let him know that she actually enjoyed his cooking. Praising him was no good. He may be the best cook she knew, but he was still Shinji, not a lapdog that needed to be patted to function. If he believed that he was bad he would only improve to satisfy her, and that was something to look forward to.

She started to devour her plate's content.

"It's ok… I guess." She muttered with half-filled mouth, masking the satisfaction the food gave her.

"I'm glad," The boy replied with a grateful smile, then continued to eat his rice with chopsticks.

What was that? Does he really know that she likes his cooking? Does Shinji actually think that he could read her? She would be dammed if she let that happen.

"What are you glad about," Asuka said in an irritated tone, "Just because you can manage something edible doesn't mean that I like it. This is shit compared to meals I ate back home at Germany. If you can't get the hint just shut up. I was just being polite. "

"S-sorry," He stammered in embarrassment, turning his gaze on his plate.

And he instantly apologized and entered the pitiful emo mode. It was a number one thing she hated about him. She began to wonder if he even had the spine in the first place. Not likely, she concluded. If she wanted to have someone to talk to on her way to school she would have to fix this.

"Look," She started, "It's still edible, ok? This one is somehow better than your last one. Be proud."

He forced a smile, still staring down at his plate, his forelocks hiding his eyes.

There, it's fixed, Asuka concluded.

He picked up his chopstick and resumed with his meal, and Asuka did the same, only without the chopsticks. She swallowed the rest, then leaned on her chair. If she could burp she definitely would. The food was more than satisfying. He could probably do it for the living and get rich. If this was one of his golden cooking days then she would also be delighted with her bento.

"Did you make my bento?"

"Yes," The boy replied, finally looking away from his plate. His gaze settled at the counter, then he pointed. "Yours is the one on the right."

She saw three of them, professionally packed with even better interior. She could bet on it. Just looking at them made her drool, but she could contain it as always. But why were there three of them?

"Why are there three bentos?"

The boy looked at her, his face curious yet completely unreadable.

"I made one for Rei," He replied.

That was a shocker. She crossed her arms. "Excuse me?"

"I made it for Rei," He repeated, not sure if she didn't hear him the first time.

"I heard you the first time, baka," She said with a shake of her head, "Let me rephrase. Why the hell would you make a bento for Rei?"

"Umm… she's not eating anything at school, and she like my cooking… so I thought that-"

"Don't think!" She interrupted, launching herself from her chair. "It's doing you no good."

She hurried down to the counter. Shinji just observed her actions, frozen in his chair.

"Which one is hers?" She demanded, giving him the look that moved his gaze back on his plate.

"The one on the left," He half-whispered his reply.

She snatched it from the counter, then threw it in the trash bin.

"What were you thinking, idiot," She snapped, "Rei is the worst pilot at NERV. Her existence is a disgrace to our team, and you are making her lunch. Are you out of your mind?"

"B-but I thought-"

"Don't think!" She interrupted.

"But she is our friend. " He protested.

"NO. She is not our friend. "

"But she is my-"

"STOP defending her!" She snapped, slamming her fist on the counter, an act that instantly shut his mouth.

"Sorry," He apologized robotically.

He remained sitting in silence, and she continued to glare daggers at him. After a brief moment she raised her hands and went for the apartment doors. He was stupid. She couldn't help him with that.

"I'm going alone," She announced, holding onto the door knob. "Don't talk to me today." Then she slammed the doors, leaving the boy alone in the apartment.

He sat there for a minute, making sure that she was long gone. Then he stood up, grabbed his bag and went for the exit.

The doors opened one second after he stood up, the sound of it made him jump in surprise, and drop his bag.

"And don't you dare to pick it out of the trash," She said, "I'm watching you, Third."

He slowly took his bag and stood in front of her, his gaze on the tips of his shoes. She led him out and pushed him in front of her.

"Jeez. You're completely hopeless." She said, pushing him further along the stairs. "What would you do if I wasn't around? I can only imagine."

He forced a smile and followed her lead.

He listened to her nagging the whole way to school. Something about being more aware of their position… he didn't talk as much. He was sad for the bento, but it didn't really matter. He made and hid another one beforehand, just in case.

-XXX-

The class was just as boring as she imagined. Their sensei was long gone in his stories about the world before the Second Impact, and the rest of the class was equally enthusiastic about them as she was. She could either fall asleep or join one of chat rooms with the lowlifes that surrounded her.

The second option it was. Sleeping in class was not something that Asuka Langley Soryu would do. It was something the rest of them did. She knew that females in her class would die for opportunity to see her slacking, but she wouldn't let that happen. Reputation was something she cherished, and hers was very respectful and worth of preservation. She would be dammed before she lowered herself on their level.

She glanced around the classroom.

Hikari was obediently following their sense's lectures. No fun there. That girl was so dense that she would never engage in chat during a class, and when she did she would bore her to death with her usual Toji talk. Did she want to shut her every time he heard that name? She did consider her as a friend, occasionally, but she was still a long way from being the person Asuka required her to be.

The rest of the females were equally interesting.

Shinji, on the other hand, was already engaged in conversation with other people. It was typical Shinji, lowering himself to their level, not even considering the consequences. Did he even know that he had an obligation to preserve the reputation of NERV wherever he was? Probably not. Sometimes his mental state concerned her.

He was probably chatting with his two fellow stooges. The most brain-dead people you could find in Tokyo-3. She knew that Shinji was stupid, but Toji invented a whole new level of retarded. Why Hikari drooled over him was as enigmatic as Kensuke's brain content. He was arguably the most socially retarded person she ever met.

She had to glance away, just looking at them made her feel dorkier. At least Wondergirl managed to control herself.

Or not.

She glanced at her fellow albino pilot, who was also typing on her laptop. That was it. Not a single one of them made any sense, but she wouldn't let their stupidity influence Shinji. He was stupid enough without their generous contributions, and she was the one that had to live with him.

She opened the chat menu and scrolled down the chat rooms, searching for the one with the dorkiest name. She found it. The room was called 'the ex-communicated', and the room creator was KenTheManlyMan, the worst, most unfitting name he could pick. There was also Toji a.k.a TojiTheManlyMan, equally retarded as the previous. What's with the people being so full of themselves lately?

Then there was Shinji's name: Symphonic. Dear god was that the gayest nickname is existence? She shook her head. He would hear about it later.

There was one more, and to her surprise its name was Azure. Wondergirl!

She would have none of it. She clicked on the room, but her access was blocked by the password. She didn't know it, but she needed it if she wanted to put this insolence to an end. She wouldn't be able to look in the mirror if she asked for it, even asking Shinji was out of question. Maybe private message- no. No. Let them have their secret party. They deserve each other. Stupid people belong together.

The lectures went on. She could hear them chuckling and smirking. They knew nothing about good manners. It was pathetic. But they looked like they were having fun, a lot of fun. God dam it.

She clicked on the chat room. The access was still blocked. She groaned. Then she noticed that the room counted one more member. Its nickname was ClassRep. Damn her treacherous existence. Why did she have a password anyway? She had enough for it. The situation was going out of control.

"Shinji," She whispered.

The boy's face was still buried in his laptop.

"Shinji," She whispered lauder.

The boy didn't respond.

"Shinji," She almost shouted.

The boy jumped in his seat. The rest of the class turned at her. One death glare was enough to make them turn their heads.

"Y-yes," Shinji whispered.

"Give me the password."

"NO!" someone in the front seats shouted. Asuka recognized Toji's voice. He managed not to jump from his seat, but still received the looks from every corner of the classroom. He realized his position and sat back in his seat, bowing apologetically to their sensei.

"Give me the damn password," The redhead repeated.

Shinji looked at her. Then looked at Kensuke, who was violently shaking his head. Then looked back at Asuka, who gave him one of those looks. Then looked at Toji, who moved his mouth like he was about to shout from the top of his lounges. Then looked back at Asuka, who looked like she was about to kick him in the teeth. Then looked at his laptop, seeing a lot of text from Rei. Quite unexpected choice of words coming from her, he noticed while reading. She must be progressing from all the-

His train of thoughts was interrupted by the sound of someone's fist hitting the table. He squeaked.

"Give me the damn password," The redhead said slowly, not even bothering to hide her rage.

"No," Someone from the front row whispered loudly for him to hear.

"Don't do it, man," Kensuke's voice came from his right.

He turned and saw Rei giving him a look. This was the first time he could read her completely.

Something grabbed his collar from the back.

He gulped.

"Mister Ikari!" Their sensei spoke, interrupting the words that almost slipped from the boy's mouth.

Shinji instantly slammed shut his laptop, rising from his seat. "Yes," He responded.

"I've read your essay about Walls of Jericho. Good work, son. It's a clear A."

Shinji bowed gratefully. "Thank you very much."

His sensei nodded, and carried on with the lessons. Shinji fell back at his seat. Something poked him in the back, and he knew very well who it was. He turned, his face colored as tomato.

He mumbled something unintelligible, not laud enough for Asuka to hear.

She poked him harder in the shoulder blade, suggesting that he'd better repeat himself if he wanted to live.

"Misato's boobs," He finally whispered laud enough, turning away the moment she heard it.

Of course it was something like that, Asuka thought bitterly. His idolization of his secret crush made her sick in the stomach. She would have to scold him harder. This primitive behavior was unacceptable.

"Pervert," She exclaimed, punching him in the back, "you'll get the rest later, and don't even think you can run away from me. You'll be punished."

"I'm not even the creator of the group," The boy whined, nursing his shoulder, "It was… Kensuke."

"Traitor!" Kensuke shouted from the right.

Shinji raised his hands in defense, giving him an apologetic look.

The other boy sighed, then shrugged, ending the tension with understanding smile. Shinji nodded in acknowledgment.

Did the retards make their own monkey language, Asuka wondered, observing their body talk. It's no wonder she hated her class. She was born genius, unlike the others, who were the exact opposite. If she couldn't understand it then it's probably too primitive for anyone who had a functional brain. It only confirmed her previous thought: stupid people belonged together.

She quickly opened her laptop and clicked on the chat room. She almost jumped from her seat in frustration. She was banned. Unbelievable. The pop out message said: "You have been banned from 'Ex-communicated' for… red hair." She groaned. How dared they?

She looked at the only person who was capable of doing something like this: Kensuke. He was adjusting his glasses, looking around the classroom. She could hear Toji chuckle somewhere in the front rows.

She threw her pen right in Kensuke's forehead.

The boy yelped from the impact, then turned in his chair. "It was her idea. I swear." He whined, pointing at the bench behind him.

Asuka saw Rei, who was looking out through the window, completely ignoring her glare.

They grouped or her? The primitives grouped on her. She could understand Toji and Kensuke. They were imbeciles, her natural enemies. Though, Rei Ayanami? Was her albino colleague so jealous of her? Of her good manners and maturity? Of her good relations with Shinji and the other people? Would Rei become so desperate to sabotage her daily life? Was she such a threat to her? Yes, she definitely was.

It was sickening. She sent her a private message, calling her a doll and Commander's puppet. That would surely bring out her inner demon, and unmask her pathetic disguise.

The First child read her message, then turned to face Asuka, not showing any facial changes. She just stared at her for a moment, her face unreadable as always, then turned to her laptop and started typing.

"I am not a doll," came her simple reply. Then she closed her laptop and turned back to the window.

Asuka raised her eyebrow. That put her in her place, she concluded, resuming her previous occupation, which was doing nothing.

The bell that announced the start of lunch break rang and set the class in motion. Toji and Kesuke rushed to Shinji and dragged him forcefully out of class. Asuka could hear class rep's voice, scolding them for their inappropriate behavior. Rei slowly stood from her seat, then disappeared somewhere in the crowds.

Asuka frowned, then stood up herself. There was only one thing on her mind. Bento. She couldn't wait to taste Shinji's cooking. She went to pick her friend, then dragged her down the hallways.

-XXX-

They sat on their usual spot on the stairway, far from other classmates that usually went in the cafeteria. Though, most of them preferred to eat outside. It was something unknown to Asuka. Their spot was nothing particular. It was just a spot without anyone to interfere or bother them. That way they could talk in privacy, and Asuka could cover her bestial eating habits.

They sat and unpacked their lunchboxes.

"I really need to go there," Hikari said. "I promised to ear my lunch with Toji."

"Why would you eat with that baboon?" Asuka asked, raising her eyebrow. "Don't tell me you're still in love with that idiot."

The color that appeared on her cheeks answered her question. Asuka frowned.

"What do you even see it that moron?" She asked without interest.

"I like his gentle side," The class rep replied, opening her bento box in defeat.

"What?"

"His gentle side," She repeated, not as confident as before.

"He has that?" Asuka asked, playing dumb. "Then again, even monkeys can be gentle from time to time… I guess," She shrugged. "And besides, he's not even a good looker."

The class rep didn't respond. She just continued to eat in silence. Why are they all so emotional these days, Asuka wondered. She would have to fix this one as well.

"You could do better than that," She said out of nowhere.

"What," Hikari said quietly.

"Yeah. You could do a lot better." Asuka confirmed.

"You really think so," Hikari asked with a small blush.

Asuka nodded, picking a slice of meat from her bento.

"You mean someone like… Ikari?" She asked with even brighter blush."

Her chopsticks froze in front of her mouth. "No," Asuka replied, "Pick someone better."

"But Ikari is really nice… and… umm… I think he's quite… handsome."

"Nah," Asuka replied with a shook of her head. "It's your imagination."

Hikari stiffened for a second. "Sorry. I forgot he's off limits."

Realizing her mistake, she quickly covered her mouth.

"What?" Asuka shouted, completely thrown off balance. "Are you trying to say something?"

"But… "

"What?" Asuka demanded.

"No. Nothing." Hikari replied meekly.

Asuka stared at her for a while, and Hikari avoided the eye contact. After few more seconds, Asuka sighed, then moved her attention back on her bento. Hikari's face finally relaxed.

"About Shinji… where is that good-for-nothing anyway?" Asuka asked.

"Probably with guys," The class rep replied.

Asuka nodded.

"You know my sister Kodama." Hikari started, "Yesterday she-"

"I'd better go find him," Asuka interrupted. "I still owe him a punch for earlier."

She devoured her bento in one go. She tapped her belly, stood up, then started to stroll down to the cafeteria, the place where her male acquaintances had their meals.

The class rep gave her a forced smile, an act that was far from what she really wanted to do. She packed her bento, then followed, muttering something in her chin along the way.

-XXX-

"Read it," Kensuke said pushily.

"Nah, man," Toji replied, crossing his hands in protest. "Not gonna happen!"

"I highly recommend it," Kensuke continued.

"Man, I don't get you," Toji replied. "What do you have against real women?"

"Define real women?"

Toji frowned. "Flesh and blood."

"Oh," Kensuke replied dumbly. "Boobs!"

"Boobs?"

"Yeah," Kensuke replied, fixing his glasses, "We know that girls in our class have no- Oh. Hey... Asuka. Class Rep…"

"Hello, stooges," Asuka replied from behind, crossing her arms and giving them a judging look. Kensuke started to chuckle nervously when he noticed her appearance. Toji just smirked, then relaxed onto his chair.

"Hello devil," Toji greeted bitterly. "Hy… c-class rep." He stammered, averting his gaze from the girl. Hikari tried not to stare herself.

"Stooge," Asuka interrupted," Where is the third idiot."

"There's only one Asuka in the world," Toji replied dumbly.

"Shinji," She explained, clenching her fist.

"Oh," Toji replied, looking around himself. "Don't see him, don't know where he went. "

"Liar," She exclaimed, "I know that you know. Tell me."

Toji shrugged. "Why would I know where he is all the time? I'm not his mother."

Asuka frowned. "Monkey, you're a terrible liar."

"I don't know. Jeez. Is that so hard to understand, or is your Japanese so bad? And besides, can't you just find something better to do than chase him around?"

"My Japanese is perfect," She replied, "and I'm not chasing him around. I need him for urgent NERV business. It's classified."

Hikari sighed.

Toji shrugged. "Then he's probably informed already." Their eyes met her for a second. "Knowing Shinji he's probably on his way. You should hurry and leave. Like, now."

Asuka took a deep breath. She wanted to punch him so badly, end his ability to multiply, just to be sure that no more Suzaharas soiled the earth.

"Stooge," She said in an irritating tone, giving him equally scary murderous glare.

"Devil," He replied casually, apparently not affected by the terror she emitted.

It was fruitless. His brain regressed to the point that he can't even register a threat when he hears it. However.

"Kensuke," Redhead said, turning to the other boy.

"Y-yes," He stammered.

"Would you know where Shinji is?"

He shook his head violently.

"And would you know if I told you that I know what you keep at the bottom of your locker, but other girls in our class don't… for now."

Kensuke swallowed.

Toji shook his head in protest, giving him a serious glare, an act that only increased the tension Kensuke felt.

"I'm waiting, stooge," Asuka said impatiently.

"Why the hell are you so persistent?" Toji asked. "He could be busy with… something."

"It's important," She replied simply.

"Look, Asuka," Toji intervened. "He doesn't belong to you. Can't you just find something else to do than ruining his life? It sucks. It really does. I mean, he's already damaged as it is, but you're like... icing on the cake. It's sad."

What is that imbecile talking about? That she, Asuka Langley Soryu, is ruining the pathetic unimportant life of one Shinji Ikari. Nonsense. That boy is privileged. He gets to live with her, to coexist with her, speak to her on a daily basis, to use the same bathroom as her, to fight alongside her. Other boys would die for a chance for that. They all begged her for a glare, or at least some sign of affection.

Shinji, however, got it all for free, and he dared to complain? He gets everything for free. His daddy is the head of NERV so he gets everything. He has the best score, but he never trained. His father never wanted his boy to labor as she did. He has the best kill ratio, and he's a coward. And she's apparently ruining it? Boo hoo.

"What are you talking about?" Asuka replied without emotion, shifting her gaze back on Toji. "I have nothing to ruin. If his life sucks it's his fault entirely. Life is hard. Nothing new. Besides, what makes you thing that I am the one ruining his life? I'll ask him myself, and if I am ruining his life then he'll definitely tell me. Don't you agree? "

Toji, knowing how likely that was, remained silent. Reasoning with girls was not his area of expertise, and he knew that Kensuke was no better. He tried. He did. Shinji would forgive him.

"So," Asuka started, "Nerd, how about you finally tell me? Or should I go around and tell everyone about the dirty laundry."

"I-in the courtyard… probably." He hesitated. "In the east corner…"

Asuka made a sly smile. "Well then," She said cheerfully," please excuse me."

"No 'thank you'?" Toji asked.

"Bite me," She replied with a smile.

She turned and left, leaving the three of them in state of horror. The girl was a lot scarier when she was cheerful.

They remained silent for a while. Hikari sat down and unpacked her bento.

"It sucks," She finally said.

"It does," Toji confirmed, leaning back on his chair.

"He didn't ask much… though, I still don't understand," Kensuke said.

"Me neither," Toji replied.

"Boys," Hikari huffed with a shake of her head.

-XXX-

It wasn't hard to find him. Find them, to be precise. Rei. Such a damn eyesore that girl was. They were at the southwest corner of the school courtyard, right under the hanged cherry blossom tree. It was a place completely isolated from publicity, since no one bothered to go so far from school for a simple lunch break.

She was still far from them, and she could bet that she was unnoticed. It wouldn't be surprising if they invested all their free time to ogle at each other. Typical. She wanted to go there and settle her scores and drag Shinji away from the influence of that wrench, but she waited. There was something that always bothered her. What would Rei and Shinji talk about anyway?

They were both boring as hell. Shinji was barely talkative, and Rei almost never talked if she wasn't addressed directly. But what happened when they were alone? What then? Is it just staring or do they actually converse… or do other stuff? She shook her head. She had to find that out. What if they were actually plotting her downfall? That wouldn't be surprising at all.

All those years of military training paid off. She sneaked from behind without making any sound, then leaned on the tree they sat under, making herself impossible to notice from their position. She could hear everything.

"I think I finally understand your thesis, but I'm not sure how to adapt to it." Rei admitted. "If our individual worth really is beyond our designated purpose then what is the ultimate cause? I don't understand."

What? What the hell is this all about? Asuka was left dumbfounded.

"Happiness… I guess. Being happy. "He replied after a brief moment.

Philosophy? Rei and Shinji discussing philosophy? Nah. Must be something else…

"Well, I don't understand it quite well myself." He admitted. He took his bag and pulled something out, then gave it to Rei. Asuka could hear the noise of papers. "Take this. I-I made a small essay about it… kind of… it might be useful. "

He's giving her present? He wrote something for her? A love letter? Battle strategy for my downfall?

Rei inspected the pile for a while, then met his eyes.

"There are hundreds of pages." She said.

It's not a love letter, Asuka thought.

"Em… I felt creative… "He hesitated. "There are pointers for the each part… so; you don't have to read it all if you don't want to… I mean, if y-you even want to read it."

"That won't be necessary." She replied. "I will definitely read it by tomorrow … thank you for your effort."

"Oh… it's nothing," He replied rubbing the back of his head, feeling a bit embarrassed.

Someone had to stop this.

Asuka pushed herself from the tree, throwing both of them off balance. Shinji almost screamed bloody murder. Rei's face remained unchanged.

She looked directly at Shinji, ignoring the other girl completely. "Shinji, come with me." She told him.

Shinji gulped. He could always hear death's breathing, so why not to test it a bit? "H-hello… Asuka. Um… it's not convenient right now… Is it important?"

"It's very, very important." The redhead replied.

He threw Rei a quick glance, just to see that albino girl was staring at him as well.

"B-but I'm… cur-"

"I don't have a whole day, third," She grabbed his arm, then pulled him up forcefully. She was a lot stronger than him, and he was too shocked to resist.

Asuka griped him tighter, then started to drag him further and further from Rei, who was still sitting in the same position. Rei was just following her with her red eyes. Asuka didn't know what to make of her expression. It was the closest thing to emotion she ever saw on her face.

"I'll see you later," Shinji shouted.

"Okay," Rei replied, not laud enough for Asuka or Shinji to hear.

Asuka turned once more to find Rei's face neutral as always. Freak. She continued to drag him until she was absolutely sure that they were out of sight. She released him, then pushed him into a tree.

"What do you think you're doing?" She demanded.

"We were eating…" Shinji replied meekly, still attached to the tree.

"No. You were eating with Rei," She corrected. "Are you out of your mind?"

"I don't understand…"

"Typical," She pouted. "You always forget you responsibilities. Let me remind you. Rei is a damn disgrace to us pilots, and you just lower yourself to her level like it doesn't matter. It's not enough for you to hang out with those two imbeciles. Is it?" She crossed her arms. "Well, at least they're human… so it's not that horrible… but Rei? Are you out of your mind? It's a social disgrace, and I, as a conscious NERV employee, can't accept such behavior from my subordinate. Is that clear?"

"But we were just eating our lunch…"

"It doesn't matter, baka," She said. "Just seeing you with her in the same place is enough to stain you. Not only that it affects you, but it also does me, since I am the one responsible for your sorry ass. You should avoid her in public places."

"But… this isn't… public place. We are at least 20 meters from everyone…"

"Like that is helping. Then how do you think I found you?"

"That's a good question… what are you doing here anyway?"

She blinked. "Yeah, it is…umm" She grabbed his arm. "It doesn't matter. The classes will begin soon. Come."

"We have 10 minutes…" The boy complained.

"Jeez. Your attitude is really pissing me off lately." She muttered as she started to pull him faster. "The only way you can redeem yourself for this is by fulfilling your obligations more thoughtfully. Besides, someone has to teach you what duty is. Maybe Hikari," She shook her head. "No. Definitely not Hikari. We will talk more about this later."

-XXX-

Through the rest of the classes Shinji didn't type anything on his laptop or converse with anyone directly. He just followed the lessons and ignored the surrounding world, including her as well. He was probably mad at her. That punch was not really necessary, she had to admit, but hanging out with Rei was a social funeral. He should be thankful to her.

He didn't spoke to her till the last class. She tried to converse with him few times, however, he was not adjacent mentally and only spoke laconically and nodded. It was frustrating, though she was probably the one to blame.

She managed to avoid walking with him from school. She told him that she was busy with cleaning duty and that he didn't have to wait. He left without a word or second thoughts.

She waited 10 minutes in the school hall, just enough time for everyone to leave, enabling her to move freely. She picked up her stuff and went for an exit.

This was one of rare occasions when she got to walk home alone. Usually it would be with Shinji or Hikari, but mostly Shinji. Without them around she began to realize that she completely ignored the beauty of her route. Walkway was very well made, the streets were safe to cross, and it was full of small shops.

There were a lot of people for some reason, all of them gathered around something. Did something happen? Crime? Robbery? She began to wonder if it was safe around here. Yes. It definitely was. If someone tried to do something to her at least twenty S2 sniper rifles would solve her problem.

She closed on the crowd.

"We have only 100 more in stock, so hurry up and get one." She could hear someone shout.

So it was a sellout. Of what exactly? She pushed through the crowd and observed. Two men and women stood by the stand and sold the tickets. A concert, she concluded. There was a huge title saying: Radiohead! This Saturday in the city hall. That was tomorrow.

Oh… those guys. Jeez. The only thing that was more boring than classical music was probably this crap. What Shinji liked about it was out of her comprehension. He would probably want to go.

She gave it some thought. She could buy him a ticket, or buy two tickets and tell him that he can come with her. That would surely put him in high spirits, and no one would ever tell her that she's ruining his life. Yes. That would work. But wouldn't that be like asking him out? Nah. It was just something that had to be done to fix some misunderstandings. That moron. He would be grateful and she could demand something in return. Make him write her homework? Make him do her essays? Make him ignore Wondergil? That would be more than welcome.

But maybe Shinji bought a ticket already. Maybe he bought two? It would be awkward to give him a ticket if he already had one. This would be a gamble. But what if he bought two tickets and asked her to come with him? Would she accept? What if they ask each other in the same time like in TV series?

If she buys them she would have to wait till tomorrow. Yes. She would give him a day to invite her, and if he didn't she would do so next day in the mooring. That way she was sure to avoid unnecessary complications that might occur.

She made her mind. She pushed past few people and bought two tickets.

-XXX-

"I'm home," Asuka announced her entrance.

She threw her bag on the floor, then went in the living room. Shinji was lying on the couch, dressed in his casual shirt and shorts. He didn't look cheerful at all. He was just hugging his pillow and staring at the TV screen, not looking up even when she entered the room.

"Anything good," She asked.

"Just some Second Impact documentary," He replied indifferently.

"Is it good?"

"No," He sighed.

"Then why are you watching it?"

"There's nothing better to do," He replied after a brief pause.

She sat on the opposite side of couch. It seemed to her like he was avoiding conversation. It was his usual emo mode that kicked in at least two or three times a day. Nothing new.

"Want to play Street Fighter?" She asked.

"No…" He replied, burying his face in his pillow.

"Oh come on," She continued, "You said it yourself. There is nothing better to do."

"It's not fun," He replied.

"Is it because I always beat you?"

"No…"

"I'll play with only one arm."

"No," He replied, "I'm not in the mood."

She frowned. She took a remote and turned the console. She took one controller and placed it on his pillow.

"One game," She said. "And if you beat me you can ask anything of me."

"I'm not in the mood," He repeated.

"Just one game," She continued. "Do you hate me so much that you won't even play one damn game with me?"

"No… that's not true."

"Then?"

He sighed. "Fine. One game."

They turned their controllers, picked their characters, then began to mash the buttons. Asuka fought as she always did. She showed no remorse to her opponent, which lead to complete victory. Shinji didn't play with such enthusiasm. He was looking somewhere beyond that screen. His fingers only worked on muscle memory, so he showed no results.

When the next game started he barely flinched. He just went with the flow.

Asuka began to wonder if she really did something unforgivably wrong. She could ask him about the concert to cheer him up, but that would ruin the presentation she had in mind. She couldn't help it, but she was bored and curious. She said the first thing that came to her mind, hoping to start a normal conversation.

"So, what did you write for Wondergil?"

"Oh… nothing special,"

"Don't lie to me, Third. It was a big pile of papers."

"It's just one thing we talked about… we don't get to talk often, and when we do can we barely say everything… I mean, she doesn't use cell phone or internet… so it's the only way."

"You didn't answer my question." She said.

"We just discussed life… in general... and some other things… so it kind of turned into a debate about life and existence… that 'why are we here' stuff…"

"Oh. That sounds boring as hell," She said.

The silence swallowed the room. The only noise that could be heard was their typing and the sounds their character produced.

Asuka could hear the noise that came from the engine of Pen Pen's fridge.

She could even hear the people outside.

"God doesn't exist you know," She finally broke the silence.

He didn't respond.

In the next second the victory sound came from the TV, announcing Asuka's third victory in a row.

"I wonder if she's reading it right now," He said.

-XXX-

Asuka cleaned her eyes and got up from her bed. She found herself with a spare of energy, but her head somehow felt more dizzy than it usually would. Though, she couldn't remember when she slept so well. It was probably because she spent the night watching every possible TV show that usualy re-aired on Friday night.

She glanced at her clock. It was 16.00. She slept for a long time. It's no wonder, though. It was Sunday, and she strictly forbade the other residents to wake her up if it wasn't a question of life and death.

She picked herself up, then stretched. Then a sudden thought came. It was Sunday. 16.00. The concert starts about two hours from now. Crap.

She launched herself on the doors. She opened them and stepped out.

"Good morning, Asuka," Shinji greeted from the kitchen. He was wearing an apron and playing with the stove. Same old. Same old.

Good. He was still here. She would have to dress up fast and be done with it. Since he didn't ask her about the concert it only meant that he didn't know about it. Okay. There was enough time to dress up, and then ask him.

"Good morning, princess. Watching adult movies a whole night, have we?" More cheerful voice came.

Fuck. Misato. This just made things awfully complicated.

She turned around, then rushed into her room to get dressed. She quickly picked a fitting dress and shoved her makeup into her tiny purse. She grabbed the two tickets and retuned back to the living room.

"Oh my. Are you all going somewhere today?" Misato said upon her entrance, noticing her non-casual pick of clothes.

"None of your business," Asuka said defensively, marching to the kitchen.

Misato huffed.

Asuka sat on her chair, far away as possible from Misato, who was now solving her crossword and dirking coffee. She glanced at the clock. It was 16.21. Minding that they needed at least one hour to the city hall, she had about 30 minutes to ask Shinji. There was no way she would do it with Misato around. The woman would skin her alive.

"Asuka, you look… unwell? Is something bothering you?" Misato asked.

"No. I'm perfectly fine," Asuka replied in an irritated tone.

Misato shrugged with a smile.

Shinji tuned and inspected her look.

"Asuka, are you going somewhere?"

"Well… yes," She replied.

"Have a good time, then," He said, turning his attention back on the stove.

"Hey, Shinji," She said.

The boy turned. "Yes?"

"Umm… could you come with me to another room for a second?"

"This sounds dirty for some reason," Misato said smilingly.

Both teenagers tuned red.

Asuka shook her head. "Look… Shinji. I need to ask you something. It's important." She said, then regretted.

She said that it's important. He will think that asking him on a date is important to her. She wanted to say it like it didn't matter to her, but now she ruined it completely. If that is a date? Yes. It's definitely a date now. What else would he think of it?

"Just a second," He replied.

"Keeping secrets from your guardian?" Misato said. "Pfff. You know I'm not that old…"

Was asking Shinji on a date such a big deal for her? Sure. It was a complete social downfall, her reputation would be tainted and she would contradict herself in every way possible. Though, if she managed to keep it as a secret? Yes. That would probably work. She could make Shinji to be silent about it. And besides, it wasn't a 'lose only' situation; it had its advantages.

"Shinji what's the word for: An erroneous perception of reality? Eight letters." Misato asked.

"Illusion?" He suggested.

She wrote it down in her crossword. "Smart boy."

Asuka was still debating.

Would they become boyfriend and girlfriend? Would anything change between them on one date? Probably yes. Depending on how far he went. She concluded that it wasn't a bad idea at all. It wouldn't be that bad to have a loyal subordinate fastened to her all the time. In a way Shinji always belonged to her, and this would only make it official. Well, not publicly official, but official none the less.

"Shinji, come with me," Asuka said, rising from her chair.

"Okay," He replied, talking of his apron.

She froze on the spot. He wore a black t-shirt with printed: Radiohead, 21.3. That was today. NO.

The bell sounded. Someone was on the door.

NO.

"Who could it be," Misato wondered out loud, rising from her chair, "I'm coming!"

NO.

Asuka almost screamed at her to keep that doors closed, but she couldn't find that extra energy she previously had. Misato opened the doors and let in the one person Asuka didn't want to see in that moment.

"Hello, Captain Katsuragi," The blue haired girl greeted.

"Rei?" Misato stepped back. Seeing Rei dressed into something other than her school uniform or plug-suit was unseen up to now. She wore a simple blue summer dress. It wasn't anything special or fashionable, but it had an impact.

"Hy, Rei. Y-you look good," Shinji said with a small blush.

Asuka stood frozen.

"Charmer," Misato said from behind, managing to make Shinji's blush more visible.

"Your physical appearance didn't undergo any noticeable changes," Rei informed. "Though, I'm perfectly content with its natural state."

"She's all yours, stud," Misato giggled.

"Misato-san!" Shinji scouted in protest.

"Can't help it," The older woman said," You look so cute together."

Asuka clenched her fist. No. NO. They do not look cute at all. He is Shinji, and she is Rei… it's not – they are not… why? Why her? Why is it always her? He was hers by right. He belonged to her. He couldn't do this to her.

"I've read it," Rei said suddenly. "Ignoring few continuously repeated typos, and misuse of word 'birth' it was very pleasant read. The concept was better, but I had a hard time reasoning with few paragraphs. I would like to discuss with you about some."

"Sure… no problem. Glad you liked it," Shinji replied with a smile. He looked like a giant weight was lifted from his chest. "Though, we'd better hurry. We can talk along the way." He opened the door for her.

"Okay," She replied, following his lead.

"Take care, kids," Misato shouted from the kitchen. "And don't stay out too late."

Rei nodded and stepped out.

"Okay," Shinji replied, closing the doors. He stopped halfway. "Hey, Asuka. You wanted to tell me something important?"

The redhead blinked. "Oh," She replied after a brief pause. "It was never really important…"

"Uh… ok. See you later," He replied, finally closing the doors.

Misato sighed. "Kids. They grow up so fast,"

Asuka turned and started to walk to her room.

"Hey, Asuka," Misato said. "Were you going somewhere yourself?"

"I changed my mind," She replied.

Misato observed her as she walked into her room. She shrugged. That girl was an enigma to her. Though, the kids were unusual these days. Since when did girls start to pick up guys at their homes anyway?

Asuka closed the doors behind her. Went to her drawer and pulled out a lighter. She opened her window and lit the fist ticket. This one is Shinji, she thought as she observed the ticket as it slowly turned its color to black. She lit the other one. And this one is Rei.

She closed the window, then went to her drawer and placed the lighter in place. She stripped the dress from herself and placed it over a chair. She laid on her bead.

She looked at her right. Her doll was starting at her with its misshaped button eyes. She stared back.

"What are you looking at," She asked.

The response didn't come.

"I didn't lose to you," She said. "I didn't lose to anyone, and especially her."

The doll remained silent.

That's right. She didn't lose to anyone. She only feels strange because she is still dizzy from so much sleep. She never loses to anyone. This changed nothing. She was still the number one pilot, and she still had the best synchronization ratio. She was Asuka Langley Soryu.

It was a mistake to involve herself with inferior beings. She would never repeat the same mistake twice. Rei and Shinji? Who even cares? She could have that moron. It didn't matter. Rei could do whatever she wanted with him and it wouldn't change the undeniable fact.

Shinji belonged to her.

They could do whatever they wanted, but he was still hers. It was a cold reality Rei would have to face. He would still clean her underwear, make her lunch, write her homework, and clean her room. Nothing else was expected of him. She only needed him for that anyway. Nothing else mattered. He didn't matter.

She closed her eyes. It didn't matter. He was still hers.

It didn't matter when he and Rei went on their second date. He still belonged to her.

It didn't matter when he started to have lunch only with her. He still belonged to her.

It didn't matter when he invited her to school dance. He still belonged to her.

It didn't matter when they had their first kiss. He still belonged to her.

It didn't matter when Shinji started to come home later than usual. He still belonged to her.

It didn't matter when Shinji wasn't home for the whole night, or the night after. No. None of that mattered. He still belonged to her only.

Rei was such a fool.


AN - Pheew… what the hell is this? Shipping from another perspective? Lawl. Such a great thing to write in your first fic. I have to point out that I don't hate Asuka in any way, far from that; I'll have to make up to her at some point. Anyways. Hope you liked it (like fuck you did), and that it wasn't confusing at some parts. Even though I think there shouldn't be any complications. Sure, I did use a lot of foreshadowing, but I think it was shit. Seriously.

Only thing that may be confusing is: why was Shinji suddenly strange in the middle? It goes like this: He was anxious the whole time, not mad or anything. He was exited for his date with Rei, and worried about her opinion of the thing he wrote. The same kind of anxiousness I feel when I wait for your sexy reviews. It's a serious stuff. Some of you may even relate to it.

Why Radiohead? Well, The Beatles are dead, and too old to fit. It could be Coldplay. My feminine side likes Coldplay, however, my other side thinks it is shit. And besides, Radiohead is awesome. So there. I wanted to make an omake about Thom Yorke appearing instead of Rei, but I didn't manage to think of anything he would say… or at least think of something referenceable.

Anyways. I'm a guy who likes to do/and now write shipping with a lot of darkness. I'll probably start a 6 chapter long story soon. My stories may be short, but I like to start something I believe I can finish.

Anyways. This is my first fic. Please be gentle with me. "Lewd anime hentai face"