A mystery fusion
by Brian Randall
Disclaimer: Moved to footer.
Notes: This one is dedicated to all of the people in #void who no longer remember helping me out with it.
He took a deep breath, his lungs feeling raw.
The battle was over for the day, but his eyes wouldn't touch upon the ravaged battlefield. They remained shut, his hands pressed firmly against them.
He could hide from the sights, and the feel. The taste of blood in his mouth was something he eventually learned to ignore; but the smell…
The smell never went away. Half the same blood he tasted, but the machine's senses had linked with his own too thoroughly. The sound, the sight, those could be manually disabled.
He supposed touch could be lessened if he removed his headgear, but there wasn't anything to feel at the moment. Just the smell of scorching, of burns… Of death.
Hands trembling, he took a deep breath. "I will be strong," he whispered. The hands came away from his eyes, and, trembling, took off the clips that rested on his hair. Receptors. To allow him a better unity with… time for that thought later.
Opening his eyes revealed a confused blur, and he had to blink before he could make out the control panels. The sun had moved, leaving him in the darkness. He turned his attention to the controls again. No need for the receptors on this mission.
"Okay," he whispered. "Let's go."
With that, he climbed the earthen wall before him, not resting until he reached the top.
A red panel was depressed gently, and a twisting sensation left him disoriented for a long moment, as the liquid drained from the control area. "Ugh," he groaned, leaning forward enough to cough up the liquid in his lungs.
That done, he climbed up to the hatch, and slammed his fist against another red panel. The hatch opened, suddenly exposing him to alarmingly cold air. "Ah," he gasped, clutching the rim of the portal to maintain his balance.
A gust of hot air ripped his attention away from the rim, and he smelled it more clearly. Charred flesh… Burnt stone… Broken dreams. "Less thinking, more doing," he muttered to himself.
Hoisting himself upward, he peered around, staring disconsolately at the massive crater that had once been a city. The rubble beneath was scattered messily about, and blackened from the force that had been used.
"Madness," he whispered.
The voice made him snap his head around to look. "Father?" he whispered, alarmed. He couldn't see the man, but…
There. Completely across the canyon, a distance far too long for the sound to cross. "Yes, Shinji. It's time."
He sneered at the spot he somehow knew was his father. "Bastard," he spat, "I'll never forgive you for this."
"You think you can destroy me?"
"Think of what I've done, Shinji. Think about my power. Think about how truly dangerous I really am. Do you honestly believe that you can stand in my way?"
Shinji hesitated, considering.
His father's plan was insidious. It was reckless, and it was horrific in its impact. It wasn't what he considered 'clever' by any stretch, but it had worked, and no one had seen it coming.
Sell toys— dolls, pets— something that children would buy. Assemble. Play with. Let into their lives.
Mostly machine, but with a small, hidden organic heart, and the souls… the souls of Angels. The toys remained safe, docile… unable to harm people.
But they remained docile for only so long, before exploding violently into the dangers that Shinji was trained to fight.
"What the hell," he said recklessly. "I might not win, but don't think for a second that I'm going to let you win either."
"As you wish…"
Shinji dropped into his seat, and sealed the hatch. The chamber was almost completely flooded by the time it sunk enough to reseat itself, leaving him breathing the warm, blood-scented liquid that served as his vehicle's lifeblood.
The visual sensors immediately locked onto his father, magnifying him. Shinji waited, tense. He would not charge— not yet. He would destroy his father's avatar first.
Gendo's hand reached out, with inevitable slowness, and a rumbling began from the depths of the rubbled city. Shinji stooped his machine low, bracing for the shaking, as a giant form began to emerge from the ground beside his father.
Naked… naked as was Adam on his creation… as all things were born into the world.
Shinji bit back a curse, but knew better than to give up. Even her, he could face.
She stood up slowly, easily the same height as Shinji's own machine, and slowly toppled forward. Gendo's voice rang out, sounding across the massive circular crater easily, as he intoned, "With your and my power, the advancement of humanity will come to pass. Angel Rei, fall in."
Shinji just charged, raising an AT field before him. Not that 'Absolute Terror' was what it was called. No, Misato had mistakenly uncovered that before the end. It was a layer of pure quantum essence. But it was the Angels' own best weapon. The Angelic Layer.
Not coming soon anywhere: Neon Genesis Evangelic Layer.
Disclaimer: Neon Genesis Evangelion is the property of Hideako Anno, GAINAX, Project EVA, TXV, and NAS. Angelic Layer belongs to CLAMP.
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