Evangelion: Only In Your Eyes Am I Worthy
Author's Note: It's been a long crazy ride… and we're almost done with it. I hope you've enjoyed it thus far… it isn't quite over yet though. Muahahahah!!!
Required Disclaimer: Disclaimers are like a box of chocolates… yum. This story is of course a fan-work. It is a simple homage to the wonderful work of Gainax Studio and Anno-sensei.
Chapter 36: Until the End of the World
Gendo Ikari and Rei Ayanami stood before the crucified image of the masked Lilith. The commander looked down at the girl who would bring about the culmination of his plans, a hint of a smile upon his lips as he felt his reunion with his late wife Yui upon him. "I have already joined with Adam. The only way I will ever see my Yui again is through the forbidden fusion of Adam and Lilith. Your AT field won't hold its shape for much longer… let us begin, Rei."
The commander gave the girl a slight smile before he continued. "Release your AT field, the barrier of your mind. Make our imperfect souls whole again. Discard this unnecessary physical shape. Merge all souls into one. And then… take me to Yui's side." Gendo reached out with the hand that Adam was implanted into as the first child's eyes closed. He pressed his hand into her breast to pass it through her chest and then down into her S2 organ. A moment later, however, his eyes widened in surprise. "What?"
Rei's eyes reopened and she stared up at the commander.
"Why haven't you dropped your AT field?!" Commander Ikari demanded, attempting to press his hand past the barrier of her flesh again.
"I am sorry, commander. But I will not merge with you." The young Ayanami stated dispassionately.
"You agreed to this! We must merge Adam and Lilith together! How dare you defy me?!" Gendo growled, pushing his hand against the girl's stomach as hard as he could, but it did not pass her skin.
"It would not matter if I allowed your hand inside me or not, commander. Adam is dead. What you have in your hand is an empty shell." Rei touched her hand to it and the fetal form of Adam blackened and decayed, falling away from the commander's hand a few moments later in an LCL-like sludge. "I will not give you the throne of God."
Commander Ikari stared down at the red-eyed angel with shock-widened eyes, clutching his raw and bleeding right hand. "You've doomed us all. Including Shinji." He accused.
The first child gave the man a sad smile as she leaned up to place a gentle kiss on his lips. "Adam yet lives. In him. You know this because you placed him there. However, I do love you, Ikari-san. I will reunite you with Yui-san, if that is your greatest desire."
Gendo watched the girl start to walk away. Something about all this was wrong. "How do you know you are doing the right thing, Rei?"
The blue-haired beauty paused and turned her head enough to see the man she was leaving behind. "The first time… I did as you asked. I took you to the throne of God. Third Impact proceeded just as you planned. But it was not enough. Humanity rejected it. They chose death over happiness because regrets held them back. The second time… I betrayed you. I chose to bring Shinji to the throne of God instead and Third Impact proceeded as SEELE had planned. However, Shinji's regrets held him back and humanity once again chose death over happiness. I will not make the same mistakes I made those times."
The commander narrowed his eyes as he clutched his wounded hand to his side, allowing the revelation of the previous two attempts to sink in. 'That's why she seemed to know more about what was going to happen than we did.' He reaized. "What will you do, then?"
Rei turned back towards the elevator leading up to Central Dogma and replied, "I will not give humanity a choice in the matter this time. God can keep his throne. All I want is a Second Genesis."
Gendo plopped down on the ground, grimacing as the bleeding refused to cease. "Rei… you'll really take me to Yui-chan?"
"Sayonara, Ikari-san." The first child stated a moment before the elevator closed behind her.
The commander sighed and lay down, staring up at the form of Lilith, which was decomposing into sludge before his eyes. "Sayonara… Rei-chan." He stated to himself, a moment before the whole room exploded from the release of Lilith's energy.
Soon after, the newly redressed Rei stepped into the command center, where the fighting had seemed to suddenly stop for an unknown reason. She gave the former professor a courteous nod as she walked up beside him.
"So what will it be? Plan A or Plan B?" Fuyutsuki inquired.
The first child watched the monitors for a few moments before she replied. "Plan A. Plan B is no longer… viable."
The deputy commander smiled and placed a hand on her slender shoulder in a gesture of affection. "Be happy, that is my last and only request."
Rei's eyes narrowed slightly in confusion as she turned to look up at the man. "Are you sure? I am sure that Yui-san would not mind…"
"Rei-chan… the only reason I ever agreed to any of this was for your happiness. It is enough. I regret nothing." The professor stated firmly.
The young Ayanami nodded and smiled up at the man. "Thank you… father."
Professor Fuyutsuki stared down at the girl in surprise for a few moments before a smile appeared to match hers. "That was my regret last time… wasn't it?"
Rei looked back at the monitors for a few moments before replying. "Does it matter?"
"No… no it doesn't." The man responded.
Unit 01 tore into the first of the remaining MP Evas, ripping its arms off and using its own limbs to beat upon the injured Eva enough to knock it down to the ground. The purple behemoth then swooped down to the ground to stand over the impaled Unit 02 to prevent the creatures from inflicting any more damage on it. "Asuka?! Asuka, can you hear me?" Shinji demanded, glancing down at the red Eva for a moment before turning his attention back towards the circling enemies. "ANSWER ME, GOD DAMN IT!" He screamed desperately.
"Shinji, we can't get any readings from inside Eva Unit 02. Even if she's still alive, she can't answer you. Focus on those Evas! Defeat them and we can help Asuka!" Misato yelled into the communicator.
The third child's eyes narrowed, confused as to why the creatures hadn't attacked yet. They seemed as if they were waiting for something, but he wasn't sure what it was. "Damn it… Damn it! ASUKA! Please… please be all right." He choked out as he sobbed.
"Shinji-kun, defeat the Evas! You have to!" The major reminded him as she prayed that he wasn't too distraught to see reason.
"Everything I touch turns to shit. Maybe… it's better this way. Maybe I should just stop fighting…" The young Ikari stated, staring down at the impaled body of Unit 02. "I'm no good. I can't do this by myself. I'm just a stupid little boy. Asuka… wake up! Tell me what to do!"
"Damn it, Shinji! Snap out of it and… HEY!" Misato scowled as the communicator was pulled out of her hand and she stared in surprise at the person whom had grabbed it.
"Shinji-kun. Fight the Evas. You must destroy them all." A soft voice stated, replacing the angrier voice of the major.
Shinji snapped out of his self-loathing inside the Eva. "Rei-chan?"
"Kill them all, Shinji-kun. Pay them back for what they did to Asuka-chan." Rei responded and then handed the communications microphone back to the major before the woman got too pissed off.
The blue-eyed boy turned his gaze back up to the MP Evas, a growl issuing forth seemingly from the depths of his soul. Unit 01 howled in challenge as it took to the air upon its wings of energy, pulling out its prog-knife as it reached the first enemy Eva. They collided in midair and then lightning-fast slashes with the prog-knife scored numerous cuts on the fish-faced Eva as the others swooped in towards him.
Unit 01 grabbed onto the slashed up MP Eva and used it as a weapon to bash it into one of the others as it attacked before the first child flew away from the creatures for a moment after his prog-knife got slapped away from his Eva's hands. He swooped around behind one of the creatures and landed on its back, grabbing its white wings and tearing them off as he used its back for leverage. The creature plummeted to the ground a moment before another of the MP Evas crashed into him from behind. "Ah!" He cried out as it pushed him all the way down to the ground where they slammed into the surface of the GeoFront, creating a crater in the ground.
Shinji cried out in pain and felt even more when he felt the creature clawing at his side. He threw his elbow back and dislodged it long enough to regain his footing and then he grabbed onto the creature and tore its throat out. "You son of a bitch! You stupid, ugly OOF!" He cried out in surprise as another of the Evas swooped into him, knocking him back as it bashed Unit 01 in the head several times. "Nng! Damn it! Get off!" He grumbled, trying to knock the persistent creature away. His eyes widened in horror when he saw two of the other Evas approaching the fallen Unit 02, seeming to grin maliciously down at it. "No!" He screamed, finally managing to kick his attacker off. He scrambled up to his feet and ran after the two that were bearing down on the red Eva.
One of the MP Evas turned to face him as another pried one of the Lances out. He crashed into the one that was facing him and yanked its jaws apart, sending out a shower of blood-like LCL and he immediately attacked the one holding the replica Lance. It jabbed the weapon forward and tore into the chest area of Unit 01, narrowly missing the spinal area where Shinji's entry plug was located. The third child grimaced in pain but punched the creature in the face to knock it down. Then he pulled the Lance from his chest and immediately used it to stab into the head of the fallen Eva before it could get up.
The young Ikari saw the armless Eva he had first attacked approaching, as well as the one he had dislodged to get over to Unit 02. "Damn it… they just won't stop!" He cried.
"Asuka was going after their S2 engines, Shinji! That seems to be the only way to get rid of them for good." Misato informed the clueless boy over the communicator.
Shinji nodded and pulled the Lance out of the head of the Eva and backed away from the two approaching ones, lowering Unit 01 into a defensive crouch. "Understood." He responded, watching them carefully. His eyes widened in fear, however, when another one of them was approaching the red Eva, likely intent on grabbing one of the Lances and possibly to further maim the fallen Unit 02. "No!" He screamed, throwing the Lance directly at the creature, which seemed to fly forward with a life of its own straight into the chest of the MP Eva, imbedding itself into its core. It blew up just as the armless Eva jumped on Unit 01 and started stomping on it, using its wings for leverage.
The purple behemoth grabbed the ankle of the attacking MP Eva and slammed it into the other approaching one, a moment later ramming its fist through the both of them. Shinji screamed both in pain and rage as a shower of LCL sprayed out of the wounds and the creatures wiggled futilely underneath him. "Die!!!" The blue-eyed boy screamed, using his other hand to bash the closest Eva in the head repeatedly. When the struggling of the creatures died down, he pulled his fist out and slammed it through their chests again, lower this time and through both of their cores simultaneously. A moment later they exploded and Unit 01 walked with purpose through the flames towards the last two remaining Evas, its eyes glowing with demonic intensity.
The two creatures seemed to look at each other for a moment, despite their lack of eyes, and then they attacked him simultaneously. Unit 01 grabbed onto one of the creatures around the neck and pulled and twisted as he kicked away the other one which was wingless from his earlier attack. Inside the Eva, Shinji screamed in fury as the MP Eva in his arms frantically struggled, but it was unable to pull away. With one last mighty yank the head of the bone-white creature was ripped off, a spray of LCL flying up to coat Unit 01, making it look even more evil than before. After kicking away the other Eva again, the purple demon-like Eva reached through the neck stump of the recently decapitated creature, ramming his fist through its body and grabbing the core and crushing it. After he pulled his fist out and threw the creature aside, he noticed the plug he had grabbed on the way out, as he had been curious to see who this bastard was that was piloting the monstrosity. His eyes widened as he saw the name of Kaoru on the plug after a swipe of his thumb cleared away the LCL enough to read the markings. "Ka… Kaoru?" He gasped out. Shinji growled and crushed the plug in his Eva's hands as he faced the last remaining Eva.
The Eva tried to take to the air in an attempt to retrieve one of the Lances, but it crashed back to the ground, seeming to not remember it was wingless until it was too late. It tried running towards the fallen red Eva instead, but Unit 01 was faster, catching up to the creature and tackling it to the ground. "I'll kill you! I'll fucking kill you!" Shinji screamed in wrath as he pummeled the MP Eva, slamming his fists into the creature until the armor around Unit 01's hands started shredding away, leaving the biological hands exposed. He tore open the chest of the Eva and yanked out its core and then he rammed it down the creature's mouth before crushing it. He ran towards Unit 02 as the last MP Eva exploded behind him.
"Eject Asuka's plug!" Shinji cried as he reached the red-armored giant.
"We can't! Unit 02 is completely dead! No signals can get through." Misato informed him.
The boy sighed and pulled out the Lance of Longinus replicas and turned the red Eva over so he could tear the armor plates off the Eva's back. He tore into the flesh underneath until he exposed the spine of the behemoth, quickly locating the plug inside and pulled it out. "It looks damaged." Shinji whispered in fear as he set it down as gently as he could before ejecting his plug.
The third child ran to the damaged plug unit and tore the hatch open, becoming even more worried when barely any LCL fluid flowed out of the plug. He peered inside and his heart went up into his throat as he saw the slumped over and bloody image of the second child. "ASUKA! NOOOO!!!!!" He screamed, clutching at his temples as he sobbed.
"Ow. Shut up, stupid. My head hurts enough already without you yelling like that." Asuka hissed out, turning her gaze up a bit as she winced in pain.
"Asuka-chan! You're alive!" Shinji cried out, staring up at the girl. He saw blood oozing out of the girl's eye like tears as well as from the corners of her mouth and she was clutching at her side where most of the Lances had embedded into Unit 02, but she was indeed alive.
"Of course I'm alive. What are you, stupid? You think I'd let myself die because of them? You should know better, idiot. I could use a bath, though. And maybe another coma…" The second child groaned out a moment before her eyes closed and she became still.
"I'm glad you're ok, Asuka-chan. I'd never forgive myself if you were… Asuka-chan?" The blue-eyed boy stared at the girl, her lack of motion disturbing him. "Asuka-chan? Asuka!" He cried out, climbing forward to shake the girl.
"ARGH! Scheiße! What are you, stupid?! Are you a sadist, shaking an injured girl like that?!" Asuka cried out as she coughed up blood.
"Sorry! I thought… damn it, where is the ambulance?" The third child wondered, poking his head out of the entry plug and looking around. The reason they were without assistance became apparent as he saw military units that hadn't attacked Unit 02 earlier starting to approach. "Aw shit, we have to get back to my Eva! Those military guys are coming back."
The red-haired girl grimaced and tried to sit up but she slumped back and waved the boy away. "Go on without me then. Kick their asses."
Shinji frowned and moved back over to her and lifted her up, despite the cry of pain that issued forth from her mouth. "I'm not leaving you here to die, damn it. We're taking care of those guys and going back to headquarters so you can get some medical treatment."
"Stubborn… sadistic… I think my eye just fell out." Asuka complained as she was dragged towards Shinji's entry plug.
The dark-haired boy glanced over and then looked back towards his plug. "It's still there. Don't worry, we'll be safe in a minute. I just hope they don't get close enough to shoot before we get in my Eva." A moment later, he cursed himself for commenting as gunshots chewed up the dirt near his feet. He started to panic until Unit 01 lowered its arm to block him and the second child from the weapons fire as he dragged the girl towards his plug. He stared up into its evil looking eyes for a moment before continuing the slow trek to his entry plug and helped the girl inside. A moment later he closed the hatch behind himself and retook the seat and controls.
They felt the plug lifted back up and a few moments later it was sliding back into Eva Unit 01 and the surroundings lit up on the screens. "Whew. For once I'm glad that my Eva sometimes moves on its own." He muttered.
"Shinji! Thank God you're back! Headquarters is completely cut off. You'll have to get back here on your own. Is Asuka…" Misato's voice started asking.
"She's here with me. A little banged up but she'll live." Shinji informed the major quickly. He glared down at the soldiers and swept out the hand of Unit 01, reaching out with his AT field to sweep the tanks and soldiers away as if they were toys. "Get out of my way, you stupid bastards!"
"Try not to rock us too much, will you? I think my guts came loose." Asuka complained, glaring up at the boy.
"Just try not to interfere with my synchronization, ok?" The third child yelled back at the girl, hoping to give her something to concentrate on other than her injuries.
"Ach, let me at the controls then if it's such a problem for you, Shin-chan." The German girl retorted, spitting to clear her mouth of blood.
The young Ikari grinned and stomped on the tanks and artillery cannons on his way back to NERV headquarters, trying not to think about the lives he was probably snuffing out. Right now he had more important things to worry about. They were trying to kill him, so he focused on that. He wasn't so much worried they'd be able to succeed, since even if his AT field dropped for some reason, he still had enough armor plating left to keep them safe, but he was worried they'd still be around to follow him into the headquarters and kill them when they exited the safety of the Eva. "Mmph… I wish they'd stop shooting the exposed arms. That hurts." He complained.
"Tell me about it, I feel it too, Third. Hurry up and bash their brains in!" Asuka demanded.
The blue-eyed boy nodded, sweeping more soldiers and weapons aside with his AT field, wishing he had one of the massive guns to shoot back at them. Soon enough, though, the soldiers were either dead, unconscious, in units too damaged to do anything or retreating. So he took that opportunity to take back to the air on his Eva's energy wings, flying back to NERV headquarters and reentering it through one of the remaining working extraction tubes.
After the entry plug was expelled, Shinji helped Asuka out of it and to the elevator, praying it still worked. They entered it and were surprised to see Misato and Rei waiting for them. "I'll take care of Asuka-chan." Misato offered, taking a look at the girl. "Looks worse than it is, I'd say." She informed them as she wiped blood off the girl's face.
"Feels like I got stabbed by a bunch of lances." The second child bit out as she leaned back against the elevator as it went back up to the command level.
Rei frowned and reached forward to brush her fingers over the girl's cheek. "You survived." She stated simply.
Asuka blinked a few times and stared down at her abdomen with a perplexed look on her face. "True. Strange… I feel a lot better. Still hurts, but not so much."
A corner of the first child's mouth lifted up in a half smile as she turned her attention to her beloved. "You both did well."
Shinji nodded, but he was confused as well. 'Does this mean we averted Third Impact? But Rei-chan said it was necessary. Why did she want us to stop those other Evas?' He wondered.
After they exited the elevator to the command level, Asuka plopped down on the nearest empty seat, ignoring Lt. Aoba when he grumbled about his chair getting stolen. "Make yourself useful and get me some water or something, will you?" She flashed the long-haired lieutenant a smile as she slumped back into the chair, clutching at her still sore stomach as her other hand absently rubbed blood out of her left eye.
Vice-Commander Fuyutsuki nodded at Rei when she looked up at him.
The first child nodded back and turned to look at Shinji, a smile forming on her lips. "Shinji-kun… may I speak to you in private for a few moments?"
The third child nodded, scratching the back of his head nervously as he followed the girl up to the observation deck where they wouldn't be overheard. "What is it, Rei-chan?" The boy asked a little apprehensively.
Rei glanced down towards her feet for a few moments before turning her head up to look at the young Ikari. "I am ready."
Shinji swallowed nervously, intimidated by the intense look in the girl's eyes. "Ready for what?" He asked with a little fear in his voice.
The red-eyed angel gave the boy a gentle smile. "I love you, Shinji-kun. More than words can ever express. You wanted to hear the words, so hear them directly from my heart. I love you."
Tears dripped unhindered from the boy's blue eyes as he reached out to hug the blue-haired beauty and held her close. "Rei-chan… thank you. I love you more than life itself!" He cried, sobbing in joy from hearing the words he wanted most.
Rei hugged the boy back and felt his AT field weakening as he opened the barrier of his mind without realizing it. The girl smiled down at the people standing up to 'covertly' watch them. "You will all be happy… I promise." Rei informed them, moments before letting her own AT field drop so that she became one with Shinji Ikari, completely. The S2 organ of Lilith inside Ayanami and the S2 organ of Adam inside Ikari became united.
Warning klaxons sounded in the command center. Lt. Aoba leaned over his console since Asuka was still in his chair and tapped at his keyboard. "Oh my god! Two blue patterns detected in headquarters! No wait… one blue pattern! There's an angel inside the complex!"
"Don't worry about it." Professor Fuyutsuki told him, watching the two pilots embracing up on the observation deck. He saw the happy smile on the girl's lips as her body seemed to be fusing with Shinji's.
"Wait! There's an Anti-AT field expanding… oh god!" Shigeru yelled, turning around as his eyes widened in horror, realizing where it was coming from.
"It's Third Impact. This is the way it should be." Maya stated calmly, despite her nervous shivering as she watched the two lovers becoming one.
"What the hell are you guys drinking, and can I get some?" Asuka inquired, shaking her head in confusion.
"Anti-AT field has exceeded critical limits! Why aren't we doing anything?!" Lt. Hyuga demanded in a panic.
"What the hell is happening?!" Misato asked, looking between the deputy commander and Captain Ibuki as they shared a smile.
"If this continues, individual entities will be unable to maintain their separate forms!" Lt. Aoba cried.
The second child sat up straighter, now becoming concerned. "What?! What are you talking about?! What's happening?"
"The Chamber of Guf is open." Fuyutsuki informed them, nodding at the Egg of Lilith that appeared on their display screens. "The door to both the beginning and the end of the world is open at last."
"What have you done?! How are you doing this?!" Misato demanded, drawing her firearm and pointing it at the former professor.
"You think I'm causing this to happen, Katsuragi-kun? Don't worry, you will soon know peace at last." Kōzō shook his head in amusement as he gave the woman a kind smile.
"Misato-san… just put the gun down. This is a good thing." Maya stated, nodding at the woman and smiling.
Misato lowered the gun and frowned. "But… we're all about to die… aren't we?"
"No. We will not die. Not exactly, anyway." Fuyutsuki stated with confidence, looking from the Egg of Lilith on the display screen to the merging pilots.
Makoto shivered as he looked up to see Rei floating down towards him, but a moment later she was Misato, reaching out to him with love in her eyes. He smiled and reached towards her and turned into LCL fluid.
Shigeru cried out in fear and curled into a ball, shaking his head as Rei leaned down towards him. Maya appeared before him and smiled at him. "I've seen you looking at me… don't you want to be one with me?" She asked, reaching her hand out to the man.
"No! Not this way!" Lt. Aoba screamed out as he shuddered in fright.
Multiple Reis appeared and shook their heads sadly. "You're forcing me to do this the hard way. I am sorry." She informed him as they all placed their hands on him, forcing their way past his AT field to turn him into LCL.
Maya shivered as she began to worry over whether they had done the right thing. She blinked in surprise as Ritsuko Akagi appeared before her. "Senpai?"
"I need you, Maya-chan." The doctor informed her with a loving smile.
"No!" The captain pulled away from the woman, shaking her head quickly. "I can't… not with you. Not after what you did."
Rei appeared behind her and placed a gentle hand on her shoulder. "Is this better? You can be one with me, Maya-chan…"
Maya looked into the girl's crimson eyes and smiled. "I could have… fallen head over heels in love with you… if only you were a little older." The captain informed her, embracing her closely and dissolving into LCL.
Professor Fuyutsuki smiled up at Yui as she floated down from the ceiling, reaching out to him. "Rei-chan… thank you. You are too kind" He stated, bursting into LCL as Yui embraced him.
The major dropped the gun she had still been clutching in her hand as Kaji appeared in front of her and reached his hand out. "Misa-chan… I love you."
Misato felt tears falling from her eyes as she saw the man she loved. "Kaji… you remember me? Take me away from here…" She embraced the man, letting out an ecstatic cry as her physical form was shed in a shower of LCL.
Asuka shook her head, freaking out as she watched everyone turning into LCL fluid. "O Gott… O Gott… what's happening?!"
"Asuka-chan. Do not be afraid." Rei stated, kneeling down to look the girl in the eye.
The second child noticed both Shinji and Rei standing before her, with love in their eyes. "What… is going on?" She asked them.
"Do you trust me?" Ayanami inquired.
"And do you trust me?" Shinji asked as well.
The German Girl looked between the two and then finally nodded. "Ja… I trust you."
They both reached their hands out as Rei stated "Then take our hands. We love you, Asuka-chan."
Asuka swallowed nervously and reached out to take their hands. "I love you, too." She told the both of them just before dissolving into LCL fluid.
All around the world, similar events played out as billions of people dropped the barriers of their hearts and turned into LCL fluid and their souls floated up into the Egg of Lilith.
Shinji glanced around and was surprised to find himself in Misato's apartment for a moment, but then it just felt right. Things were a little confusing but he noticed Asuka sitting at the kitchen table, staring down at her hands. "Asuka-chan… are you all right?"
"You said you loved me. You don't love me though, do you?" The second child asked in a sad tone.
"No, you're wrong. I do love you. Really!" The blue eyed boy insisted, leaning over to rest a hand on the girl's shoulder as he tried to lean down enough to look into the girl's royal blue eyes.
"Liar. You don't love me. You pity me." The German girl spat out bitterly.
Shinji shook his head in confusion. "Why are you saying all this? Why don't you believe me? I love you, damn it!"
The red-haired girl stood up and advanced towards the boy who backed away from her apprehensively. "Tell me the truth, for once in your life. Do you really love me? Do you love me the same way you love Rei? Be honest!"
The third child looked away as his cheeks reddened in embarrassment. "No. But… I do love you."
"You disgust me." Asuka sneered down at the cringing boy. "You say you don't love me and then say you do. That's not an answer."
The young Ikari shook his head. "But I do love you! I really do! Don't you understand, Asuka-chan? I think of you… as a sist-"
"GOD DAMN YOU!" The second child screamed, viciously shoving the boy to the ground. "How dare you?! I gave you my heart and you made me into your little fucking sister?! How could you do that to me?! You knew I loved you the same way I love Rei! How can you say you love me like a sister when you look at my body with lust?!"
"I can't help but find you attractive, Asuka-chan. But… that doesn't change how I feel. I'm sorry… I wanted to love you as I love Rei-chan… but I can't change my heart. I will always look out for you… I'll always take care of you. I'll give you what you want if you insist on it… but I just… can't love you passionately. I can only love you… the way I love you. Forgive me." Shinji stated, standing up and looking at the girl hopefully.
The German girl stared back at him for a few moments before responding. "No."
"Please, Asuka-chan, don't push me away. I can make you happy, if you just give me the chance. I have no problem with what is between you and Rei-chan… just don't expect me to change how I feel!" The blue-eyed boy pleaded.
Asuka continued staring at him. "No."
The third child shoved the table over. "God damn it, if you really loved me, you'd love me for the way I am, not how you want me to be! Don't try to change me! I would never try to change you!" The boy yelled as he tossed the chairs away and approached the girl. "Please… don't push me away!"
The red-haired beauty frowned thoughtfully. She looked over the boy's shoulder and saw Rei silently watching them from the next room. Finally, she made her choice. "Fine. But don't expect me to call you big brother, because I'm not changing how I feel about you, either."
"Thank you, Asuka-chan! Thank you!" Shinji cried, clutching the girl in a desperate hug as he sobbed.
"Hmph. Idiot." Asuka sighed and hugged the boy back as she watched the first child in the distance. The world seemed to melt away.
Misato sat in a café and watched Kaji as he talked to a man who operated a hot air balloon in an attempt to have him take them up at a discount price. "Hmph… cheapskate." She muttered, but really she was blissful. Everything just felt… right.
"You seem happy, Katsuragi-san." Rei commented from the side of the woman.
The purple-haired beauty looked down at the girl, only partially surprised to see her there. What was more surprising was that the girl was actually talking to her. "I am. I'm with the man I love… everything is right with the world."
The first child nodded and sat down next to the woman, watching Kaji and the hot air balloonist argue. Or more precisely, Kaji was trying to be charming and persuasive and the other man was yelling and being stubborn. "I wanted to thank you. Though you never treated me very well, you were never purposely unkind to me. More importantly, you saved Shinji-kun's life twice at the cost of your own. This is a debt of gratitude that I owe you."
Misato scratched her head and looked down at the girl, confusion evident on her face. "Huh?"
The red-eyed angel shook her head. "It is not important now. I simply wanted to thank you, whether you remember saving his life or not is unimportant. But, because I owe you a boon, I offer you this. Unlike most others who choose the dream, you and Kaji-san can be together in a shared dream. I believe this is what will make you happiest."
The major fixed a look on the girl beside her, a part of her understood what she was being offered while the rest of her was clueless. So she decided to trust her instincts. "Thank you. Yes… this is what I want."
Rei nodded and stood up. "Have a happy life, Katsuragi-san. My debt to you is thus paid." She walked away, disappearing a few moments later.
Misato shook her head in confusion for a moment but quickly forgot the girl had even been there. She turned her attention back to Kaji and smiled as she saw him giving her a 'thumbs up' signal. Today was going to be just perfect.
Maya Ibuki was riding a train on the way to a big anime convention, a happy smile on her face. She had heard that there would be a demo for Dragon Quest X there, which made her giddy with excitement. Not only that, but she knew for sure that several of her favorite manga artists would be in attendance as well. All that, plus nonstop screenings of anime shows made her feel like she was riding the train to heaven.
Maya glanced around and spotted Rei watching her curiously. "Oh, come on Ayanami-chan… don't tell me you aren't the least bit excited?"
"Perhaps." The first child responded neutrally. She was quiet for a while before she spoke up again. "Ibu… Maya-san. You seem happy here. Is this what you really want?"
The young captain raised an eyebrow inquisitively as she regarded the blue-haired beauty. "What do you mean?"
Rei looked thoughtful for a moment before answering. "Your situation is a bit… complicated. Shinji-kun shared his essence with you… which gives you the option of returning to earth if you choose to. However, he does not love you and you might not be happy returning to that situation." She paused for a few moments as she gained the older woman's complete attention. "However, despite not sharing myself with you in that manner, I do love you. But Asuka-chan recently pointed out to me the different aspects of love. I find myself caring for you as… a mother, perhaps? Or an older sister?"
"Let's go with older sister. My ego can't take being thought of as your mother. I feel old enough around you as it is." Maya teased.
"Indeed. Now on the matter of the problem: you may return to earth if you choose to, where you will have the opportunity to be a mother to Shinji-kun's children, if you both so choose. Life may not always be happy or easy, but it will be life, not a dream. We will care for one another… and perhaps you shall find love with one of us. As long as there is life, there is the possibility for love." The first child paused for a few moments to allow the woman to fully contemplate the first choice before she moved on to the next. "Or, you can stay here. A world without pain or fear or loneliness, where there will always be things you can look forward to and be excited about. I have no control over what happens to you here after this point… so you may never find love here. These are your choices."
The cute computer geek frowned thoughtfully and gazed out the window, seeing the convention site in the distance. With a squint she could see people dressed up for costume play while others were wearing shirts with various anime or manga characters on them, anxiously awaiting entrance. She turned back to the girl, noting how patient she looked. "So… I can stay here and be happy… but I will probably never fall in love. Or I can return to earth where I might be very unhappy, but there is at least a chance of falling in love, right?" After receiving a nod from the girl, she thought about it. 'Happiness versus the chance at love… that is my choice.' The captain sighed. "I have to decide this now, don't I? And I won't be able to change my mind afterwards."
"Once I ferry your soul through the Egg of Lilith to your destination, I cannot come back for you. If you stay on Earth, it will be as it always has been… the only way out will be death. So yes… you must make this decision now, before I carry out my task." Rei responded.
"Hmm. You already know what my decision will be, don't you?" Captain Ibuki inquired, staring off at the convention the train was approaching.
"Yes." The first child responded with a nod.
"Good. Go with that then." Maya decided.
Rei turned to look over at the convention, an amused smile forming on her lips when she saw a girl wearing an outfit that looked very much like a plug suit with a short blue wig on. "Yes, Maya-san." She replied finally.
Shinji looked around again and found himself in a sky trolley as it made its slow trek up towards the top of a mountain. He turned to look at the girl beside him and a smile appeared on his mouth as he saw his girlfriend wearing a lovely fancy looking dress and a lacy black choker. "Wow… Rei-chan… you look beautiful. I mean… not that you don't normally… but wow."
Rei turned her head to smile at the young Ikari and held his hand. "We were never able to find the time for that date you wished to take me on. This is not disappointing, I hope?"
The third child shook his head, gazing down at the trees as they receded below them. "No, this is great. Wow, look! Sakura trees!" He pointed down at said trees, grinning with joy.
The crimson-eyed angel leaned over to look down at the trees with vibrant-looking cherry blossom leaves. "They are lovely." She remarked.
"Not as lovely as you are, Rei-chan." The blue-eyed boy stated, hoping it wasn't too sappy for his beloved.
Rei smiled at the boy and sat back down beside him, looping her arm in his and leaning her head against his shoulder. "I am happy. You make me happy, Shinji-kun."
The young Ikari brushed his fingers gently through the girl's silky blue hair and kissed her forehead before resting his own head against the top of hers. "I hope I always do, Rei-chan."
The first child brushed her fingers idly over the boy's arm as she enjoyed the quiet affectionate moment with the boy. "Shinji-kun… I hope you are not angry with how long I waited to tell you that I loved you. I… knew that when I did, the barrier of your heart would open fully to me. The other Evas had to be destroyed before that happened, or I would have no control over what happened afterwards. I would be… a puppet to the whims of SEELE. I refuse to be a doll."
Shinji shook his head. "No… I'm not mad. I'm just glad you had a good reason, because I was really starting to worry that I was misreading your affections for me."
The blue-haired beauty watched as they approached the mountain top. "Have you any regrets, Shinji-kun?"
The third child frowned thoughtfully as he stroked the girl's hair. "Well… there are things I wish I had done differently. But… my actions led me here. Asuka-chan is happy and you're happy, so that fills my heart with joy. So regrets? No, I regret nothing. Before… my only worth was in piloting the Eva. And even that didn't make me special. But then it changed… in your eyes I am worthy. And that makes me special. Nothing could ever make me regret anything that led me to falling in love with you."
Rei nodded and sat up straight and turned to look at the boy silently for a few moments before she nodded. "I am glad."
The young Ikari blinked a few times, baffled by what he was seeing. "Rei-chan… is it me or did your eyes change color?"
The girl laughed softly and held her hand out. "Do not be afraid, Shinji-kun. Take my hand. It is time to leave this life behind."
Shinji nodded, a part of him understanding what was going on. "I love you, Rei-chan." He said as he took her hand and kissed her gently. A moment later, he had dissolved into LCL.
"I love you, Shinji-kun." Rei whispered as the world melted away.
Shinji opened his eyes as he found himself lying in a grassy green field. He sat up slowly and looked around, seeing Asuka and Rei sitting up as well. "What… happened?" He asked, looking around uncertainly.
"Humanity has rejoined with God. We are all just outside of the Egg of Lilith. Can you not feel them?" Rei inquired.
The third child closed his eyes and then nodded, feeling the hearts and minds of billions of people. He felt their fears and doubts, as well as their hopes and dreams and their love and hatred. It was all a bit overwhelming so he opened his eyes and shook his head to clear it. "Yes. This is… weird."
"I don't like it. These people are creeping me out!" Asuka stated, shivering in revulsion as she opened her eyes up. She looked over at the young Ikari and raised an eyebrow up. "Like a sister, huh?"
The dark-haired boy smiled sheepishly and scratched the back of his head. "I guess that wasn't a dream." He replied, to which the girl rolled her eyes.
"We have things to discuss and decide upon." The blue-haired girl stated, resting back on her hands as she looked at her fellow pilots.
"Like what? Who gets to puke first?" The German girl asked.
Rei smiled and shook her head. "Where we go from here. We have several choices. We can live in a world where there are no boundaries between people… where everyone is as one. There will be no beginning or end of any one person… we will all be continuations of each other. There will be no sorrow, no pain and no fear… only acceptance. No one will ever be alone."
"That doesn't sound so bad." The third child stated.
"The hell it doesn't. I'd rather die than be one with everyone else. I'm Asuka Langley Soryu, I've fought all my life to be my own person. You think I want to give that up just so I don't run the risk of being alone? What are our other options?" The second child demanded, waving off that choice with a scowl of disdain.
Rei looked at Shinji and saw the doubt in his eyes. "If it helps… you each rejected that world last time."
The blue-eyed boy nodded. "Ok, I'm sure I had a good reason. Like Asuka-chan said… what's our next option?"
The red-eyed girl nodded, accepting their rejection of the world with no boundaries. "Our next choice is a world of dreams. Idealized versions of reality… where one need not feel pain or loneliness unless they really want to. Everyone will be connected, to some extent… but in that world will exist the versions of people that are in their hearts. The Rei and Asuka of Shinji-kun's mind will be in his world, while the Rei and Shinji of Asuka's mind will live in hers… and the versions of you both in my mind will exist in my world."
Shinji considered the girl's words as he felt his own fears and doubts tugging at his heart. "We won't really be together? Just… it'll seem that way? Is that what you're saying?"
Ayanami nodded. "If you wish for a world without pain, you will receive it. But it will not be me there with you… only the me that exists in your heart."
Asuka snorted. "Screw that. I had that with Shinji when I was in my coma. He was there, giving me love, but I woke up because I knew it was only a dream. I don't want a dream, I want the real thing. I want to be with the real Shinji and the real Rei, not some idealized dream versions."
The third child nodded. "I agree. I want you, Rei-chan. Not a dream of you."
Rei nodded in acceptance. "I am not surprised. The first time we tried Third Impact, it was like that. And you both eventually rejected that state as well."
"Right.Next choice?" The red-haired girl inquired impatiently.
"I can return you to the real world, where you'll live out the remainder of your days as individuals." The first child stated. "It won't be easy… there will be no one else. They will all only have the choice of being in the world without boundaries or the world of their dreams. Whatever makes them happiest."
"I like that one. I can't give up who I am and I won't accept a dream. Anything is better than that." Asuka stated confidently.
Shinji's eyes narrowed as he considered the phrasing of the girl's statement. "It does sound like the best option. So if that is our choice, we'll stay on Earth… but everyone else will move on?" He inquired to clarify. 'That must be why Rei was so concerned about children… if we're the only ones left… humanity will only exist as they choose to after Third Impact… and when we die, if we have no children, no one will be left on Earth.'
"Yes… they will have the true forms of humanity, so there is no reason for them to come back. They would come back as they were before, a dead end of evolution. However, twice you both expressed the desire to return to corporeal and individual form. So I gave you a way to evolve. It is what I knew you would choose. You are happy with this decision then?" The crimson-eyed angel inquired. After receiving nods from them both, she smiled. "Then lie back down and close your eyes. I will return you to Earth and bring the new worlds to the rest of humanity."
The second child smiled and lay back down, resting her head on her hands behind her head as her eyes closed. "It could have been worse." She commented as she disappeared from the minds of the other two children.
Shinji turned his eyes back to his beloved and smiled at her. "I love you, Rei-chan." He reclined back in a similar way to how Asuka had and stared up at the Egg of Lilith floating over their heads, watching the souls of humanity merging with it above.
"I love you as well, Shinji-kun." The first child replied, watching her beloved as his eyes closed.
After the boy's eyes closed a thought came to his mind, a wish in his heart. He smiled at it, even though he knew it was impossible. A few moments later, he disappeared.
Rei turned her attention back up to the Egg and floated up to it. "Make your choices." She stated into each of their minds. She closed her eyes for a few moments and then she nodded. "Goodbye." A few moments later, both she and the Egg disappeared from the sky as she guided them to each individual's chosen destination.
The end. Thanks for reading! (runs away) (Comes back a minute later) What, you want more? Well it would certainly be in the spirit of Evangelion if I left the story there, now wouldn't it? But ok, then the epilogue will be coming soon. Teehee Final chapter: The epilogue, of course. Find out the final fate of the Children. Hopefully Shinji won't strangle Asuka the moment he wakes up this time, huh? Hmm… or will Asuka strangle him instead? haha