Disclaimer - Well, you know the drill, it's not mine. At least not yet.
But as soon as I have taken over the world, it will be mine!
EVERYTHING WILL BE MINE! WAHAHAHAHA!!
Uh...ehm... you better forget the 'take over the world' part...
For those who can't tell:
"blabla" is spoken.
'blabla' are Shinji's (in the last paragraph Asuka's) thoughts.
A Happier World
Shinji stirred in the hospital bed. He remembered being captured inside the twelfth angel, the energy of the EVA's life support systems running out.
He had been waiting for death to come.
But he had not died. Shinji couldn't remember how he had escaped but he remembered seeing Misato after the plug had been opened, just before he had lost consciousness yet again.
Seems it was now about time to face the 'unfamiliar ceiling' once again.
Slowly, he opened his eyes.
'It's not that unfamiliar anymore, though,' he thought sadly.
"Hey, look who's awake," a lovingly voice disturbed his self depressing mood. "Morgen, sleepyhead."
Now, THAT was unfamiliar. He suddenly felt someone embracing him and even giving him a small peck on his cheek. His surprise even grew as he noticed that this someone was actually a certain redheaded girl.
No, that couldn't be. Who- or whatever this was, the real Asuka would certainly be VERY pissed, when she'd see this... thing copying her, being in a position like this with him.
"A-A-Asuka...?" he stammered once some blood returned to his brain.
"Yeah?" smiling, she looked up to him...
With her bright, crystal blue eyes, shining like...
'Damn it! Think, Shinji, think!'
"I... I... don't think you should doing this right now," he managed to say, cursing himself a bit when she actually moved away from him.
"Mmm, I guess you're right," though she sounded somehow displeased. "I was thinking selfish again. I have to tell the others that you're awake."
She then put out her cell-phone and began dialing.
What was going on? Not only that Asuka was REALLY nice to him, she was also admitting being selfish?
'Couldn't have been out for THAT long, could I?'
Lost in his thoughts, he failed to notice the entrance of another being to the room.
"I'm terrible sorry, Shinji! I came here as soon as I could!" the newcomer said, running towards him and giving him a tight hug.
"F-f-father??" Once the shock wore off, Shinji growled back. "What are you doing here? Since when do you care about me?"
"Oh, my poor, little Shinji. It must have been worse than we thought, hmm? I've told you, you shouldn't pilot the EVA, if you don't feel like it. But you're so stubborn." He chuckled and ruffled his son's hair. "Just like your old man..."
Shinji just gave him a perplexed look.
"Of course I care for you," Gendo continued. "You're my only son after all! Since... since the... death of your mother..." He took a deep breath.
'Geez, if it wouldn't be Commander My-Heart-Is-More-Like-Ice-Than-Yours-And-If-You-Want-To-Argue-About-It-I-Stare-You-To-Death-Ikari, I would say he's fighting his tears...'
Finally, the older Ikari regained his strength. "No... no... I'm... I'm over it!" He gulped. "However, since then..." He hugged Shinji again, who was already gasping for air. "You're everything I have!"
Then his phone rang. And rang. And rang. And rang.
"Ehmm... father? Shouldn't you get it?" Shinji asked, hoping to be able to breath again soon.
"Ah, I guess you're right," he sighted. "Even though I know they're just going to tell me to return to my work."
With that he pulled his phone out of his pocket and began to speak with... whoever it was.
'Argh, what the heck is going on?' The Third Children looked back from his father to Asuka who had finished her call and was now smiling back at him. He immediately returned his gaze to the ceiling, which was now the ONLY familiar thing in this room. 'Maybe some kind of mind-eating-aliens had invaded earth while I was out.'
A sigh at his side brought him back to reality. "As I've guessed. I'm afraid I have to go back to business. I'm terrible sorry, Shinji."
"Yeah, uh, too... bad, huh?!"
The unusual quiet redhead broke her silence "Don't worry, Mr. Ikari." 'Mr.?' "I've just called Misato. She sends Kaji to pick us up."
"Ah, yes, Mr. Kaji. A loyal, trustable employee. And a good man, no doubt. Well, I've got to go." He stood up.
"So, uh, bye?"
"Are you sure you're alright? I mean, I could keep staying here for a while."
"No, I'm fine."
The Commander went for the door before turning around. "You know they can surely handle NERV for a few minutes more."
"Nah, it's okay."
"Oh. Very well then..." he said and left the room.
'I can't believe it. Is he actually caring? I've never expected this to be so...'
"I could quit, you know. I bet Fuyutsuki would make a fine Commander:"
"FATHER, JUST GO ALREADY!"
"Humph! Meanie...", Gendo muttered before finally left.
'Gaah, this Angel must have really messed with my brain.'
In the next minutes Shinji managed somehow to keep Asuka on a safe distance. Not that he minded her close by and loving him, but as far as he knew she could snap back any moment to her old self and he simply feared her wrath for 'taking advantage of her'.
Nonetheless was he relieved to see the Kaji coming in.
"Hey there, Shinji, Asuka", he greeted them cheerful as always.
'Finally! He'll bring Asuka back to her senses.'
Yet, instead of running and clinging to Kaji's arms said pilot just gave a nod and a short "Hi" before returning her attention to the Third Children.
"So, are you ready to go, Shinji?"
"Uhm, yes..." he answered, trying to forget the part when he was changing his clothes beneath the bed sheets since a certain female attendee didn't want to leave.
'At least he seems to be normal,' Shinji thought while the trio went through the hospitals corridors. Yet, taking a closer look he noticed something.
'Is he... SHAVED? Nah, think positive, at least once! That could be just coincidence! Yeah! That's it!'
But then a few, quite attractive nurses passed by. He gulped.
'No wink, no flirt, nothing at all? That can't be good! A test might be necessary!' "Uh, Kaji?"
'Oh great, now I already have to act strange for myself...' "How come you didn't asked one of them out?" he asked innocently.
Kaji stopped immediately.
'He actually looks shocked?! Oh, no...'
"M...m...me?", the NERV-/Government-Agent stammered, before forcing a smile. "You're kidding, right? You know, I have only eyes for my Misa-chan!"
'MISA-CHAN?? Aww, crap!'
"Just like I have only eyes for you, my sweet Shin-chan", the redhead on his side blurted out before clamping his arm.
'Can it actually get any weirder?'
Maybe he shouldn't have asked that.
As they entered the apartment he noticed how unusual clean it was. It was NEVER clean when Misato was at home alone for a few hours. Something else got soon his attention or better said his nose. Someone was cooking. But it didn't smell like Misato's burned Instant meals.
"We're home!" Kaji greeted.
"Welcome home! I'll be right there!"
'Well, it IS her voice and it IS coming from the kitchen. Maybe I just shouldn't look, maybe then she'll be normal', Shinji thought and closed his eyes.
"Hello, my little Shinji!"
He could hear her coming closer and hugging him.
"Humph! He still is MY Shinji!" Asuka snorted.
"Oh, come on, you can share a bit of him with me," Misato teased.
'Well, I doesn't sound to bad. I guess I could risk a little peek.' He slowly opened one eye a bit...
...and suppressed a scream.
Not only she wore an apron, instead of her usual, rather revealing clothes she also wore a dress. She almost looked like one of those 'good housewives' in these old movies from the 50's.
"I-I- I need a drink!" Shinji muttered.
"Oh, I go get you one!" Misato offered.
"Hey, he's MY boyfriend, so I'll get him something!"
"NO! No!", he crawled away from them. "I'llgetitmyself,okay? You... you'lljuststayhere,right?" After his babbling he turned around and ran into the kitchen closing the door behind him. He gasped for air, almost hyperventilating. Once he caught his breath, he reached for the refrigerator.
'No beer at all. Why am I not surprised?'
He grabbed himself a soda-can when the other fridge opened and his last roommate came out.
'Ah, PenPen, at least you can't act much different.'
Shinji watched the penguin waddling over to him.
"I bet you're hungry, he? Wait, I'll..." he trailed off as PenPen opened the fridge, grabbed a tuna-can, rammed its beak in it, as if it was paper, opened it and fed himself.
Shinji dropped his can. 'There goes the last purpose of my life...'
He needed to get out of here. NOW!
He stormed out of the kitchen and the apartment as fast as he could so no one could stop or, in Asuka's case, get after him, just shouting "I'm going out! Having depressing mood! Running away! Bye!"
"Have fun!" three voices called back, but he was already too far away to hear...
After running for 10 minutes and approximately 4 blocks the Third Children calmed down.
'Argh! What should I do? I mean, its not that bad or something, actually they've changed for the better, but... it's just too much, too sudden, too... creepy...'
He looked up and noticed the familiar surroundings.
'Hm, I'm near Rei's. I could see if she's fine. Yes, I bet she's acting normal. It would take even more than Third Impact to change her!'
Within a few minutes he stood in front of apartment 402. He glanced down to the mailbox. Empty.
He pressed the doorbell.
'I've got a baaad feeling about this...'
He gulped. The door opened. Rei Ayanami saw him. She smiled brightly.
"Oh, hello, Shinji, it's really nice to see you're up and out of hospital. I would've been there, you know, but they said you'll need rest and I would make you nervous with all this talking of mine. I'm not sure, what they meant but you know how these doctors are, always fearing the worst. But I think Asuka didn't mind at all, you know, being friends and all and she's still jealous. What am I saying, she's always jealous, always thinking everyone wants to steal you from her. But who am I talking to, you know that the best, don't you? You're really a lucky guy, having someone that loves you that much. You know, just the last day at school I've said that to Hikari. 'Hikari', I said 'You know what, I think Shinji and Asuka can be really happy to have each other', I said and she was like 'Yeah, they are just as a nice couple as me and Toji', she said and then she began babbling nonstop about her and Toji, you know what she's like: Always she and Toji, Toji and her, blabla, never stopping. Oh, you know I hate people who can't stop talking without letting the others have a part in the conversation. And while I was... Hey! Shinji! Are you even listening to me? You know I can't stand people who can't listen! However..."
Shinji just stood there.
A loving Asuka was actually a real nice change.
A caring father could be a welcomed difference as well.
A happy-family-thing with Misato and Kaji wasn't a bad idea either.
He could even come to terms with a self feeding PenPen.
But a non-stop-talking Rei was
So he did what every pilot of a gigantic, devastating robot, who was fighting enormous, hostile creatures and saving humanity would do:
"So, you don't like it?", he heard a voice.
His own, as he recognized it.
When he woke up he felt something against his body. And his lips.
His eyes shot open in an instant. It took a few seconds for him to recognize Asuka giving him a breathtaking kiss - in a much better way than last time. He didn't try to resist though. First: she wouldn't let him go anyway and second: it was a very nice way to wake up.
"W..wohaw..", was all he could say after they finally parted. Then he noticed, she was glaring at him. It wasn't her Do-Anything-And-I-Kill-You-In-Less-Than-Three-Seconds-Glare he was used to, yet he could tell that she wasn't too happy with him.
"YOU!" she growled, poking his chest with her finger. "How dare you!"
'Oh, GREAT timing to switch back...'
"First you're almost dieing in this angel, then you keep ignoring me and then passing out for hours till morning!"
'Morning?' It wasn't until now that he noticed being back in his room.
"Have you any idea how worried I was when Rei called?"
"I'm sorry!" 'Geez, has been a while I used that...'
"You better are. And to make sure that happens again I'll go wherever you go for the whole day! Now, you better get up for school!"
'Was that supposed to be a threat or a promise? Wait a moment, did she said SCHOOL? I was in hospital yesterday and just woke up after passing out again and I have already go to school?? Arrgh!'
Yawning, he took a look at the clock.
That couldn't be.
He rubbed his eyes and looked again. But as to be expected, to no avail.
"Why have you woke me at 4:30??"
"Sorry about that," she yawned herself. "Misato insisted to drive us to school."
'Better not ask...' "Alright, alright, I'm going to the bathroom," Shinji muttered.
Something was repeated in his mind.
' "...I'll go wherever you go... " '
He looked over to his roommate and apparent girlfriend who was showing a mischievous grin.
It's amazing how fast things can rush by when your driving in a car.
There went a red cabriole, it's driver enjoying the morning sun.
A family-van, on the way to a vacation.
A truck, delivering materials to a construction site.
A tractor, that strayed itself to Tokyo-3.
A kid on a bike, joyfully ringing it's bell.
An old man on a walking stick...
"Misato, don't you think, we should go at least a bit faster?"
"No! As you can see, the speed limit is 50!"
"But you're not even driving 10!"
"Better safe than sorry!"
"Just give it up, Shinji," Asuka interrupted from the backseat. He trembled as she leaned forward to whisper in his ear, "Why don't you come back here? We can turn it into some... 'quality time' "
He didn't remember how his organs survived, with the blood supply limited to his face and, well, somewhere else...
When they finally arrived in school, Shinji didn't know if he should be surprised or not to find non other than Toji, formally dressed in his school uniform, being the first in class.
"Ah, greetings, my friend," he bowed, "And to your lovely companion as well."
'Toji being polite and even calling Asuka 'lovely', checked. What's next on the list?'
"You should better watch out when you're flirting," Shinji heard a female voice behind him. "You're girlfriend could be listening!"
"My fair lady, you know that you are loveliest of them all"
"I better am, Mister!" she growled, popping the gum she chewed.
'Ah, yes, a rebellious Hikari, how could I forget...' Shinji sighed.
While he sat down and waited for the rest of his classmates and further 'surprises' to come (with Asuka's desk suspiciously close to his) he booted up his laptop.
'Well, could also check my mails.'
Yet, instead of finding only his usual NERV-news mail and one or two from Toji or Kensuke, his mailbox nearly exploded with hundreds of love letters from Asuka, mails from his father with subjects as 'How are you?', 'Are you alright?' or 'I'm so incredible sorry for not be right there with you' and messages from Rei just trying to make conversation, as well as a few mails from Misato, asking what he would like for dinner.
The class was now almost full but there were still some faces missing as he noted. He leaned over to Toji, ignoring some nagging from his redheaded neighbor about being ignored.
"Hey, where's Kensuke? Wouldn't he be here by now?"
"Ah, yes, Kensuke, our fellow friend and companion. I guess, being the ladies man he is, he will be late as always, since he will be flirting with every beautiful woman he encounters."
'Kensuke, the ladies man. Yep, that makes sense... not!'
Lost in his thoughts, he almost failed to notice Reis entrance to the class. Well, actually it was hard to miss, since she came in whirling, a broad smile on the lips, greeting everyone with a loud "Hi, class!" then stopping and giving a peace-sign.
"Hi, Rei!" the class greeted back.
"Well, Miss Ayanami, it's good to see you're so enthusiastic about my lessons, but I would suggest you'll take a seat."
'Oh, great the teacher is even trying to be funny. Well, lessons about to start - time to get some sleep. You can never have enough of that...'
"Rise, salute, whatever," Hikari droned.
"Very well then, I guess we'll start with some physic experiments..."
Already half asleep, Shinji stirred.
'Wha...? No endless history about Second Impact?!'
Yet, his started to close again.
'This just can't be real!' was his last thought before he drifted back to his sleep.
"It's as real as you want it."
Shinji found himself back in the train facing his younger self. "But it was just another dream. I had already decided to go back."
"No, you had just decided to live."
"But this is not reality."
"As long as you're not waking up, how do you know it's not?"
"Are you kidding? No one is acting like himself. Since it's my dream it's as if everyone is acting like I want them to be, as if I'm forcing them to do so. It just doesn't feel right."
"You may see it as you wish. You may think of it simply as a world, where everyone's character is just strange or the opposite of what you're used to know. Or you may think they just want to freak you out. As for me, I prefer to think of it as a happier world without the shields of fear, hate and pride. Where everyone just do as their hearts tell them to do. Which you prefer is up to you."
"That's the innocent and naive point of view of a child. But I'm afraid a real world can't exist like that, as good as it seems."
"Then, why don't you just wake up?"
Shinji opened his eyes. He recognized his surroundings immediately. He was back in hospital. As he looked around he saw Rei sitting by his site, reading a book as always. She noticed that he was awake when he sat up.
"You can rest for today. We will handle everything for you", she said and stood up.
"Oh. But I'm fine now."
"Well, that is good for you."
'Hmm. Where have I heard that before?'
With that she left, revealing an eavesdropping Asuka, who quickly hide blushing behind the corner.
Shinji couldn't help but chuckle. But then he noticed a familiar smell and sniffed on his arm.
"Still smells like blood..."
'So it was really just a dream...' he thought, remembering his latest experience.
' "I prefer to think of it as a happier world." A happier world? It was indeed happier, yet in a very strange way.'
He chuckled again.
' "Where everyone just do as their hearts tell them to do." Just do as your heart tell you? Could it really be that easy?'
His gaze returned to the door.
'Well, you'll never know, if you don't try,' he made his decision and got out of the bed.
Asuka was fuming - once again.
'Damned First! How dare she made me look as if I was concerned about that baka! As if! I was just... coincidentally nearby!'
The sudden opening of the door caught her off guard - again within a few minutes. However she didn't need long to recover and began her assault on the just appeared Third Children.
"You! You better get not any false ideas. I'm not here because..."
Shinji just stood there. Not trembling, not backing away as usual. Just smiling.
"Hi, Asuka. It's nice to see you've come to see me", he silenced her.
The Second Children was dumb folded. 'Since when does he have the guts to interrupt me?' "I...I.. NO! As I was saying..."
"Well, I was going for a little walk. Want to come with me?"
"What? W.. ye.. eh.. NO!"
What came next, took her totally by surprise. He carefully grabbed her shoulders, leaned closer...
...and kissed her. And even though it was more of a short touch of their lips instead of a passionate kiss, it felt much better than last time.
"I'll see you later, then", he said.
Then he turned and went down the corridor, leaving a stunned Asuka behind. After a few seconds her arm began moving again, reaching for the back of a nearby chair, sitting down, not blinking once.
'What the heck are you doing??' her mind screamed. 'Get after that dirty hentai and beat the crap out of him.'
But she didn't get up.
She just kept sitting there.
A/N: Well, there it is, my little introduction to the world of fanfiction. I know it's nothing special due to the lacking plot (heck, it's actually just a listing on how the characters act differently), it's just a nice little story for in between.
As you may have guessed, English is not my native language, and even though I can read and understand it pretty well, I still have problems writing it, especially with the grammar. So if I made too many mistakes *Shinji-Mode on* "I'm sorry" *Shinji-Mode off*.
Also, if you're wondering, why I've kept on writing 'Third Children' etc., I'm following the Japanese version (the dub is evil, I tell ya! EVIL! Honestly you guys must have ears like steel to survive the whole series with such an horrible voice acting!) So there'll be "Children" instead of "Child" (since I still don't know if that's a intentional mistake or not), the "baka/idiot-trio" instead of the "three stooges" and no "wondergirl", just "First" in my fics. Unless to make fun of it.
Well, back to slag my own story, Misato hasn't that much of an appearance and the NERV-staff isn't in at all, I know. I'm also not sure about the second part/day myself, but parts of that school scene were some of the first that came to my mind, as well as the ending.
Why I've chosen the aftermath of the twelfth angel instead of the fourteenth or Third Impact as time setting? For once the mood isn't as depressing yet so a humorous story would still fit, but most of all it gave me the best opportunity for the ending.
For the PenPen-scene, I've got the inspiration for this from a fanfic, in which an angel wanted to demonstrate Shinji that he is needed by the other characters by showing him their lives if he wasn't in there. Yet, in the end it seemed that his only purpose was to feed PenPen and thus saving him from becoming ill by Misato's cooking. I can't remember the title though, sorry.
As I said this was my first fanfic, but fear not (or tremble with fear, just as you wish), I've already four others in the works.
Until then, see ya!
P.S.: Some of you have already asked for a continuation, but I'm afraid I have to disappoint you. This was meant to be a one-shot from the beginning. But if you want to write your own story/sequel out of this, feel free to do so.
Yes, I've finally revised this. More or less. Not very much improvements actually. Okay, I've just ran a spellchecker over it and only edited a few things here and there. Hey, I'm always telling you that I'm lazy.
In other words: There is still no real plot; the second half still sucks; further descriptions and other extensions are still almost non-existent; the conclusion with the younger Shinji is still in a total contrast to the series (where he wanted Shinji to accept reality and not to run away); and, since it was not (p)re-read, there are most likely still various grammar mistakes. So what? It was my first fic and I'm not ashamed to show it.
But at least, I should have got rid of the spelling mistakes ("An Happier World" Oh boy! Even with only 3 years of French-lessons compared to 8 years English, I pull off something like this. And it took a few weeks before someone actually told me). The greatest Bonus, you'll get here, would be the small "the-way-to-school"-scene, I came up with, a couple of days after I released the original version.
P.S.: Okay, okay; there are still various grammar and sadly even spelling mistakes (the "none - no one"-mistake, that's mentioned in the reviews was actually correct in the previous version. Stupid me! Of course I've corrected these now).
As I've said, I didn't take much time for the revise, since I wanted this "finished" as soon as possible, so I can move on with "The 2nd try" and "The Ikaris". Maybe I'll make a proper rewrite once I'll have more time.
For now, let me tell you: It was much worse before! If you don't believe me; check "The Realm of the Unwanted" at the Eva-fic section of my site for the old versions.