He Said Elisha Agrees

[14:42] * Sept opened his eyes slowly. Where was this..?-
[14:44] <Sept> The light was very faint, but the -taste- was unmistakable. Slowly, it all came back to him. Still no way to tell how long it had been. The NERV Chronometer had been knocked out by the Evangelion's defeat, as well. So the boy closed his eyes and waited.
[14:53] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> [Time passed slowly alone in the plug. Eventually, however, it started to shift upwards- and not at all a comfortable experience. Extraction was rough and bumby.]
[14:53] <Ginevre`Fontaine> <bumpy*>
[14:56] * Sept made little reaction to the movement, at first. Maybe he even slept through some of it. But eventually all the rocking managed to convince him, and he grabbed on to the nearest solid object for some safety.
[15:03] <Ginevre`Fontaine> [A few minutes later, sunlight would stream in through the Plug’s windows, illuminating the LCL- which would suddenly start flowing away. A few seconds later, the Plug was empty and bright. Above him he would see the dark metal of the Geofront roof in between the recessed buildings.-
[15:03] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> [One more clunk, and the Plug hit the ground.]
[15:08] * Sept gasped at the strange, foreign sensation of air in his lungs, for a moment afraid he might drown there. He was in Paris. They must have won without him. Sera curled up, suddenly cold and uncomfortably wet, in the pilot’s seat and hugged his knees.
[15:14] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> [He could see a small crowd of people milling about outside…-
[15:14] <Ginevre`Fontaine> [… And a second later, the Plug’s hatch shifted, pushing out, then swinging open.-
[15:14] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "… Sera?" Asked a voice. A familiar voice. Someone looked inside… Ginevre.
[15:17] <Sept> It took a while, but eventually he looked up. The voice brought a faint smile to his face, but it did not make his an expression of joy. His eyes looked tired and raw, but most of all… dead. Even when they moved to meet her gaze, there was no understanding, nothing at all in those eyes. "H… hello."
[15:19] <Ginevre`Fontaine> "Are you alright? It’s ok. We won!"
[15:21] <Sept> "It is? That's good." Whatever it was, it affected his voice, too. The tone seemed flat, monotone compared to what it had been. "What happens now?"
[15:22] * Ginevre‘Fontaine stared at Sera. "Come on. Can you move?"
[15:24] <Sept> "Yes.Where do you want us to go?"
[15:25] <Ginevre`Fontaine> "Come on. Let’s take you to the hospital."
[15:27] <Sept> "No."
[15:28] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "What?"
[15:32] <Sept> He just kept staring back, blinking profusely with the LCL from his hair getting in his eyes. "I don’t want to go there. Besides, is that what you really mean?"
[15:33] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "Yes, of course. You’re injured." She said. "You're probably in shock, Sera. Come on."
[15:36] * Sept rested his head back on his knees again. "No. I can stay here. I will be alright."
[15:38] * Ginevre‘Fontaine put one foot inside the Plug- into what remained of the LCL- then another, finally fully stepping inside. She closed the hatch behind her.
[15:43] * Sept didn’t react in any way. He seemed to be mulling something over. "Ginevre?"
[15:45] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "Yes?"
[15:46] <Sept> "She told me the truth."
[15:47] <Ginevre`Fontaine> "Who did?"
[15:48] <Sept> "Ramliel."
[15:51] <Ginevre`Fontaine> "Are you sure you can believe whatever she showed you, Sera?"
[15:53] <Sept> "Yes." He paused. "Elisha agrees."
[16:03] <Ginevre`Fontaine> "What did you see?"
[16:06] <Sept> "What I did. What I’d forgotten."
[16:09] * Ginevre‘Fontaine stared intently at Sera, her blue eyes keen and unblinking. She was quiet for a minute or two, before eventually she smiled and spoke.-
[16:09] <Ginevre`Fontaine> "About time."
[16:11] <Sept> "Yes. What happens now, Ginevre?"
[16:17] <Ginevre`Fontaine> "You tell me."
[16:20] * Sept paused to think. "Are you going to make a new me again?"
[16:21] <Ginevre`Fontaine> "Not this time." She said. "Unless you want me to. Sera? Can you tell me something? Do you want me to make a new you? or do you want to do it yourself?"
[16:27] * Sept shook his head blankly. "…it would be easier if you did it, Ginevre. But we can’t do that."
[16:30] * Ginevre‘Fontaine nodded quietly. "Do you understand why, Sera?"
[16:33] <Sept> "Yes. I understand."
[16:39] <Ginevre`Fontaine> "Then you know what you must do to make yourself new again?"
[16:42] <Sept> "No. But first I must apologise."
[16:44] <Ginevre`Fontaine> "For what?"
[16:49] <Sept> "I must apologise to Yanmei and Isaiah and everyone I called family for betraying their trust. And shooting Isaiah. It should be their choice to allow me to make myself."
[16:49] <Ginevre`Fontaine> "…" Ginevre stared at Sera, blinking very slowly. "You shot-? Why?"
[16:53] <Sept> "You made me forget about it, but you did not know..?"
[16:54] <Ginevre`Fontaine> "I…" She frowned. "It must’ve been localised damage regarding events around the time period…"
[16:56] <Sept> "That is unfortunate. But, I was only trying to protect. I made a mistake."
[17:01] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "I see. To protect Yanmei?"
[17:02] <Sept> "Yes."
[17:13] <Ginevre`Fontaine> "Sera, you have to be very careful." Said Ginevre urgently. "I can help you along, but at the end of the day, Yanmei is probably going to need some time to get used to this."
[17:16] <Sept> "I agree. But I made them a promise." Sera tightened his hug a bit. "I’m cold."
[17:17] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "Do you want to come outside? We can get you some soup and a hot drink."
[17:20] <Sept> "I want to be alone until I’m better again. Can you promise me "
[17:20] <Sept> ?*
[17:25] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "You don’t even want me here?"
[17:27] <Sept> "We can… get soup first. But I'm very tired, Ginevre. And I need time to think."
[17:28] * Ginevre‘Fontaine nods slowly. "Then I’ll bring you some soup. And some blankets. Alright? Then I promise I'll let you remain here as long as you need."
[17:33] <Sept> "Alright. Thank you."
[17:35] * Ginevre‘Fontaine nodded, and for a moment it seemed as though she’d just stand where she was… Then, reluctantly she opened the hatch and stepped out.
[17:37] <Sept> [As soon as she stepped outside, a voice would call out to her. "So. Get a confession?"]
[17:39] * Ginevre‘Fontaine turned to stare W in the eye. "As a matter of fact, I did."
[17:42] <Sept> [He smiled and adjusted his glasses. "That’s half of our deal, then."]
[17:44] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "So it is." Said Ginevre quietly. "Come, walk with me. Tell me how you came to this conclusion."
[17:52] <Sept> ["Gladly." A few taps later, he was at a polite distance following the woman. "Well, really, it’s just a process of elimination. He was a possibility, so I looked into it."]
[18:05] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "I see. What elements brought about the elimination of others, then?"
[18:19] <Sept> ["The incident fit Silas Caine’s modus operandi poorly. It was a personal attack, but lacked a certain essential quality of… let's say terror, that his father's other work has always had. But looking into de Pteres… His sudden near-hostility of Gabriel-Wei was the first thing that tipped me off. When I found out it had started after he conducted his experiment with Unit 04… Well. A
[18:19] <Sept> pile of circumstantial evidence led to another."]
[18:23] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "What’s the explanation, do you think?"
[18:36] <Sept> ["As far as I understand, it's in the Evangelions' interest to keep their pilots in the best mindset for piloting. In Zhang's case, considering the state in which 04 has achieved the most results in the past… this likely means sowing a certain amount of hatred for The Enemy. But convincing de Pteres would take more than outright fiction. Tying Paris-2 or his family in there somewhere
[18:36] <Sept> wouldn't be much of a challenge, of course."]
[18:51] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "Perhaps he could’ve had Sera believe that Isaiah wasn't fit somehow." Mused Ginevre. "Fair enough. I suppose someone with Sera's sense of filial duty might be spurred to murder by that. Somehow." She mumbled "Alright. But how do you explain the fact that he not only performed this with injuries, but did so by being on top of a seemingly unopened building?"
[18:58] <Sept>[ "S2 surveillance lost him and Pilot Blanc later during the same trip. We've determined they accomplished this by crossing from one rooftop to another with de Pteres'… 'grappling gun'. I've also determined he keeps a supply of morphine for cases such as this, which could account for him failing to actually murder anyone… -and- he's displayed adequate skill in operating under intense pain
[18:58] <Sept> before, perhaps most notably during the Malchediel attack."]
[19:03] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "And of course he’s well-trained with firearms…" Ginevre nodded slowly. "He intends to tell Yanmei of what he did. How do you think she'll react?"
[19:09] <Sept> ["He does?" W laughed a little. "She's armed more or less as thoroughly as he is. Anything could happen. I'm not sure if any of those outcomes are in any way positive, but it's his call, as long as you don't officially call him out on it."]
[19:11] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "He’s fairly stubborn." Said Ginevre. "The idea is practically fraught with danger, but the ideological and spiritual benefits may outweigh that. He reminds me of my husband in that sense."
[19:19] <Sept> ["Not entirely unexpected. You've certainly done your homework with whatever you're setting up."]
[19:58] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "Indeed." Said Ginevre diffidently. "So. Any progress in regards to the sabotage?"
[20:12] <Sept> ["I have suspects for the scapegoats and spies involved. They’ll lead me up the chain eventually. If I attract too much attention now, the case might cool down a bit sooner than we'd like."]
[20:13] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "I see. I don’t suppose you could cast some light on motives, then, at this point?"
[20:19] <W> "It doesn't fit the same pattern as taking down Isaiah. I -hope- it was a cover for something else, or just an elaborate way of making you doubt yourselves and spend resources running after a phantom culprit. Otherwise the scheme'd just be embarrassing in its Machiavellianism."
[20:21] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "Yes, it does seem a little uneven in the effort-to-results ratio." Said Ginevre. She smiled lightly. "Well, Agent W, you are to be praised for your work so far. Of course, you don’t answer to me anymore."
[20:27] <W> "Of course. And along those lines… why were Sera's memories tampered with, Mrs Fontaine?"
[20:29] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "Do you want the nice, sanitised answer, or the answer that may very well one day make you regret ever asking?"
[20:33] <W> "Well, let me think. One has me plagued with regret over not asking about a plot involving the very Protectors of Humanity itself, the other has me plagued with regret about doing so, but having the information nevertheless." He laughed. "Try me."
[20:39] <Ginevre`Fontaine> "Sera is actually a genetic clone of my late husband, Elisha Caine, grown and created by NERV, and that his entire life so far has, opposed to being the boundless free existence he thought he chose, little more than a very large testing ground. By the time he discovered this, he had manifested a number of unappetising irregularities. The potential mind-crushing realisation seemed to be stemmed by the person who had informed him. Luckily, the deviances couldn’t condemn the -entire- clone line, so I was able to modify one of the backups and replace the defect."
[20:43] * W looked away, unimpressed by the former part of these revelations. "So you had him killed around… yeah, that makes sense. Who was this mystery source?"
[20:45] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "Ikari."
[20:47] <W> "So… that would’ve been Tokyo, as well? You're sure he didn't know before?"
[20:48] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "Fairly sure."
[20:50] <W> "Hmm. I’ll take your word for it." W tapped on the floor firmly with his cane. "Well. This was productive. Glad to do business with you."
[20:53] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "One last thing."
[20:54] <W> "Hmm?"
[20:55] <Ginevre`Fontaine> "How are you finding Kaworu? No doubt he’s been a tremendous aid."
[20:58] <W> Good thing he was half-turned away already. Otherwise she might've picked up on that nasty twitch. "Working with him has been a…. learning experience. Where one finds people such as him, I would have no idea."
[21:02] * Ginevre‘Fontaine decided to follow. "He’s quite fascinating, no? I wonder, what do you think of him? Considering your ability for insight…"
[21:04] <W> "He is -different-, I'll give him that. I still don't know quite what goes on in his head."
[21:05] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "I don’t think anyone does except him. He seems to think very highly of you."
[21:10] <W> "I've… noticed. I find myself unsure what to make of that."
[21:10] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "I think it’s cute."
[21:11] <W> "This is not a helpful remark."
[21:13] <Ginevre‘Fontaine> "Have you ever considered just indulging him for an afternoon and going out somewhere for fun? It might help you."
[21:18] <W> "Several times. As one contemplates suicide to make sure it still isn’t a viable option."
[21:19] * Ginevre‘Fontaine smiled quietly. "A curious answer. Well, I bid you good day, Agent W. If you’ll excuse me, I have to go apply for a job."
[21:21] <W> "Very well. Until next time."
[21:21] * Ginevre`Fontaine gave him a final nod, then went on her way.

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