He Said Is That So I Did Promise Didn T I

18:26 <Misato> It's a few days after Ramliel's defeat and the cataclysmic battle following. There's a lot of things to do. Rebuilding Paris-2. Reorganising NERV's chain of command. Repairing the Evangelions. Figuring out how to -pay- for everything.-
18:26 <Misato> So naturally, Misato was in her makeshift office- her temporary quarters- four piles of papers about 2 feet tall in front of her and roughly nineteen cans of beer behind her.
18:26 <Misato> She wasn't in a good mood.
18:38 <Raphael> It was hard to say just when the OD had begun, but the clock reads almost six o'clock when her binge is interrupted by a gentle knock on the door.
18:38 <Misato> Misato turns a tired, mildly tipsy eye to the door. "Yeah? Who is it?"
18:45 <Raphael> There's a brief pause as whoever is on the side tries to judge her tone, but apparently it's judged safe enough. A moment later the door swings partway open to reveal Raphael standing on the threshold, looking almost back to his normal self with the aid of a few evenings of… well, naps, but that had served him just fine. "Sorry to interrupt, Captain." He says, tactfully ignoring the
18:45 <Raphael> mountain of aluminium.
18:48 <Misato> "Oh." Misato looks at him for a second, before straightening up suddenly and glowering down at her paperwork- before her eyes flick up. "Oh! I wasn't expecting you to visit, Raphael."
18:49 <Raphael> "Is that so? I did promise, didn't I?"
18:52 <Misato> "…" Misato runs a hand through her unwashed hair. "Hah. So you did, so you did~" She says, smiling sweetly. "I admit I was hoping things would be a little less muddled by now."
#0318:52 * ZackStudy is now known as Zack
19:04 <Raphael> "Yes, well. We're doing all we can, Misato. This will pass." He opens the door a little further to reveal a plastic bag clutched in one hand, steam wafting from within. Judging by the logo on the plastic bag, the whole thing seems to have been abducted from the Geofront's cafeteria. "Not quite the dining I promised you, I'm sorry, but the city's not exactly full of open restaraunts right
19:04 <Raphael> now. I had to compromise."
19:07 <Misato> Misato's eyes light up, perhaps only realising that despite the beer she put away she's actually terribly hungry. With surprising haste she shifts her towering piles of paper and form over to her bed. "Raffy, you're amazing~ In you come!"
19:16 * Raphael doesn't need to be told twice, stepping into the room and shutting the door behind him and setting to work pulling out a vast array of plastic containers out of his bag and laying them out on Misato's desk. From the look - and smell - of it all, the Cafeteria seemed to be having a day of Chinese dishes, and Raphael seems to have taken one or two of everything they had on offer. "I
19:16 * Raphael didn't have a chance to try it before I brought it up, but the food always seems to be better than expected."-
19:17 * Raphael gives the mountain of cans a thoughtful look before sweeping the whole lot into the now empty bag and setting it by his chair.
20:00 <Misato> "Ah, you've come to sweep away all my problems, Raffy-kun~ bearing the true food of romance: Chinese takeaway." She smirked, but it was clear that despite her sardonic tone she really was enjoying this. "Ooh, black pepper steak~"
20:09 * Raphael grabs small package of fairly basic looking container of chicken chow mein after Misato selects her own dish. "Romance? No, I'd just caught wind of the fact that you hadn't taken a scheduled break in… about 36 hours, I believe. Or eaten." He snatches up the bag again and gives it a disapproving jangle. "Liquid lunches excluded, apparently."
20:11 <Misato> "… Have you been spying on me?"
20:16 * Raphael chuckles. "No. Marianne mentioned it."
20:17 <Misato> "Of course she would." Misato let out a sigh. "Yeah, I've just been busy with -that-. Look at that! That is a stupid amount of paperwork." She muttered, pulling a tray of braised chicken towards her with some fried rice. "How is Marianne anyway?"
20:21 * Raphael twirls a plastic fork through the noodles, and there's the distinct sense he's doing it more to keep his hands busy instead of out of any intent to actually eat. "… she could be better, I suppose, but I think that's true of most of us. And it'll stay that way until we have the time to actually deal with what happened."
20:23 <Misato> "Yeah, I guess that's true." Said Misato, digging into the rice and chicken with incredible gusto that is more than a little unladylike.-
20:23 <Misato> "And how about you? How's my favourite French knight?"
20:28 * Raphael gives Misato a thin smile. "He's keeping himself sane by focusing his capacity for worry on others rather than himself, ma'am."
20:30 <Misato> "That's our Raffy-kun~ but." She taps her fork against the side of her dish. "I have an order for you."
20:32 * Raphael has known Misato just long enough to feel the first twinge of unease at that. "Of course."
20:32 <Misato> "Since I haven't taken a scheduled break in 36 hours, that means it's only fair that I go on break for the next, oh, three hours. So during those three hours you're to call me Misato."
20:36 <Raphael> "That's a dangerous path, ma'am."
20:37 <Misato> "Oh?"
20:45 <Raphael> "Without that veneer of professionalism this could be mistaken for a date."
20:48 <Misato> "Oh no. A date with a beautiful woman! Truly, that's a risk you'll just have to bear, Raffy-kun."
20:50 <Raphael> "Mmm. If you insist ma'… Misato."
20:53 <Misato> "See, that wasn't so hard, was it, Raffy-kun~?"-
20:53 <Misato> [There was a sort of sharp knock on the door.-]
20:54 <Misato> "Oh, can you get that?"
20:57 <Raphael> "You may be underestimating my dedication to protocol." Raphael says mildly, even as he sets down the still untouched contained down on the desk and heads to open the door.
21:02 <Misato> [The door opens, revealing a 3-4 foot tall penguin, a pair of bright red crests running across its temples, a curious, sophisticated backpack/harness around its body, and a pink fluffy towl around its neck. It turned and looked up at him. "…"]
21:05 * Raphael looks down and… stares the penguin right in the eye. He doesn't move an inch. "…"
21:05 <Misato> ["Wark."-]
21:07 <Misato> Misato let out a tortured sigh. "Pen-Pen, go away. I'm busy." She reaches under her desk and pulls out an unopened can of beer, which she tosses to the penguin.-
21:07 <Misato> [Pen-Pen catches it perfectly in his beak and promptly shuffles off.]
21:09 * Raphael watches him go, even leaning out beyond the doorway to watch the penguin disappear down the corridor, before finally shutting the door and turning back to Misato with an uncertain expression. "… huh."
21:10 <Misato> "So that's Pen-Pen." Says Misato, turning to her chicken unpurturbed. "He's been wandering around a bit, seeking out hot showers."
21:17 <Raphael> "…" Raphael gives her an odd look. "… you know, I hear the security staff have been getting some odd reports about a wandering bird over the last few days."
21:18 <Misato> Misato nods casually. "That's not surprising, considering…" She coughed and smiled politely. "Well, he'll only be here for another week or so~ I doubt he'll bother anyone. He can be an annoying sometimes, but he's pretty inoffensive."
21:29 <Raphael> "… so was he a beer-drinker before he found his way to you?" Raphael asked with an amused look in his eye as he returned to his chair.
21:30 <Misato> "… I think I may have had a part in that." Says Misato cheerfully. "I mean, you know, sometimes you don't want to drink by yourself, and when all you have is a penguin…"
21:32 <Raphael> "If I was the sort to have' pets, you would never be staying with them."
21:35 <Misato> Misato gives him a dark look before returning to her rice. She is making astonishing progress on that front.-
21:35 <Misato> "It's been a heavy few days, huh…" She mumbles after awhile.
21:50 * Raphael gives her a long look before seizing upon his chow mein again. "I've definitely seen lighter." He says quietly, face as close to sympathetic as he could manage. "Tell me how you're really feeling, Misato. Forget all the guff for a moment - you can trust me."
21:51 <Misato> Misato pauses mid-bite to look up at him quietly for a minute or so. Eventually she swallows. "…" She looks away for a second, brow furrowed, then back. "It's…" Another frown. "It was just a pretty brutal Angel, that's all. We lost a lot of people. We lost Dorian."
[19:30] * Raphael considers this over a few mouthfuls of food, nodding slowly. "We did. He says eventually. "And I really do regret we couldn't do more, but I hope you aren't blaming yourself for that, Misato."
[19:39] * Misato‘ looks just generally put out and listless. "I think it’s in the nature of a commander to ask if they couldn't do more, you know. If maybe I'd done -this- differently, or something…" She says. "I mean, I shouldn't think that. I know that at the end of the day I did all I could, against one hell of an enemy. But…" She shakes her head, frowning, no longer eating. "I feel sick."
[19:43] <Raphael> "That's ok. I'm sure Suzie will be overjoyed to take your leftovers." Raphael says with a smile, some of his exhaustion and sadness showing through the false cheer. "Listen, Misato… I can't truly speak for the dead, but I suspect the Colonel would be grateful to you and Alphonse for bringing those kids home safe. If I was in his shoes, I'd feel the same."
[19:45] <Misato‘> "Yeah. Yeah, I should focus on that, huh? On the good." Says Misato. "Not the bad." She gives Raphael a dry little smirk. "The runty pretty boy really pulled through, huh?"
[20:10] <Raphael> "He certainly did. Did he finally earn a bit of respect?"
[20:11] * Misato` eyes Raphael flatly, before leaning forward on her hands. "Did he earn yours?"
[20:12] <Raphael> "Well yes. But I wasn’t holding it back from the beginning." He says with a smile.
[20:14] <Misato‘> "Ah, but~ is he a better OD than me, Raffy-kun?" her eyes glittered and she smiled sweetly.
[20:15] * Raphael doesn’t flinch. Sudden movements would be ill-advised. "You should probably be more worried about Marianne, Misato."
[20:17] <Misato‘> "Oh? Why’s that?"
[20:24] <Raphael> "Oh, she just has a pretty good handle on the superheavy regiment, and she did well during the battle…" He says. "If you were -really- looking for a rival…"
[20:26] <Misato‘> Misato’s eyes glint dangerously for a second. "Ohohoho. Well, it's fine~ Come next year I'll beat them both and take my place as NERV's greatest OD!"
[20:31] * Raphael grins twirling up another forkful of noodles. "This would be that… what did they call it? Thunderdrome?"
[20:32] <Misato‘> "Thunderdome, without the r." Says Misato. "It’s a movie reference."
[20:34] <Raphael> "Ah. I suppose that'd explain it…" He says, wearing the vague, thoughtful look of a man who hasn't seen a movie in years. "All I know is that the Thruster team caught wind of the whole thing and refuse to stop talking about it."
[20:35] * Misato‘ laughs. "They can appreciate a good show. I mean, to them it must seem like a band of giant robots duking it out…"
[20:36] <Raphael> "Isn’t that what it is?"
[20:36] <Misato‘> "… Well, yes, but it’s sort of more like a review as opposed to a boxing match."
[20:39] * Raphael gives her a dubious look. "It seems like a surefire way to create morale problems to me."
[20:39] <Misato‘> "Oh?"
[20:41] <Raphael> "The idea of being the weakest already seems to be a psychological pressure point for Pilot Volkova, for example."
[20:43] <Misato`> Misato’s face twists at the mention of Volkova- an expression of disgust. She looks away. "Ugh. That woman…"
[20:46] * Raphael sighs slightly, realizing he's probably moved the conversation in the wrong direction. "… I'm betting you don't mean Volkova herself."
[20:48] <Misato‘> "No, Natasha’s a fine girl, it's…" Misato shakes her head, wincing. "Can we talk about something else?"
[20:50] <Raphael> "No need to convince me. Riel and I are hardly on the best of terms." Raphael says darkly. "… I /am/ sorry for speaking against you during the battle, though. I had meant that to be the first thing I told you."
[20:53] <Misato‘> "Heh." Misato smiles a little. "Was it about what Riel did?"
[20:56] * Raphael nods slowly, busy trying to keep the anger off his face. "That’s right. Eden Base showed me something similar… Riel forcing Volkova's compliance during their training with the same method."
[20:58] <Misato‘> "Ugh." Misato attempts to purge this disgusting revelation by reneging on what she said, viciously cracking open an as-yet untouched container of lemon chicken and ripping into it greedily. A few seconds later she emerges. "You wouldn’t think Dr. Riel was such a… ugh. Just by speaking to her. I guess that's the hallmark of the NERV scientist. Pleasant on the outside, incredibly warped on the inside." She shook her head. "Dr. Ikari…"
[21:01] * Raphael nods slowly, scraping out the last of his own chow mein. "The Captain's told me some of it. About Rei…" His own attempts at hiding disgust with food aren't nearly so successful.
[21:02] <Misato‘> "…" Misato puts down her lemon chicken. "What do you think about it?" She asks directly and frankly.
[21:07] <Raphael> "…" He gives Misato a long look, and for a moment it seems as though he might follow through… but then he looks back down, seeming almost defeated. "… I’m not sure it'd be wise to voice my full feelings about a man who will be replacing Commander Fontaine."
[21:10] <Misato‘> "I doubt he gives a damn one way or another, Raphael." Says Misato. "It’ll be good to get it off your chest. Besides." She smirks a little. "I've got a lot more to say about that bastard Gendo-" She says the last three words just a little louder than is necessary- "than you do, so…"
[21:14] <Raphael> Another of those looks. "… I don't think people like that deserve a child as kind-hearted as Rei."
[21:18] * Misato‘ nods slowly. "Rei loves them deeply. So I have to agree with you there." She says. "Gendo’s a bastard, but Yui's something else. A little pathetic, really." Misato shakes her head and sighs. "You know, I actually met Ikari Rei? The child?"
[21:23] * Raphael frowns deeply at that, staring down into the empty container with great intensity. "I suppose you would have, yes…"
[21:25] <Misato‘> "Not too often. I suppose I was considered a bad influence." Said Misato with a little smile. "But there is one thing I can say. Ayanami Rei and Ikari Rei feel like two different people to me, now."
[21:27] <Raphael> "I guess that’s not too surprising. I mean, their ages alone…"
[21:29] <Misato‘> "Mmmhm." Says Misato. "It’s a lot different being 6 to being 15. But even then…" She smiles. "Our Rei's chosen her own path, now. She's unique, the way it should be." … But her smile fades, a troubling look coming across her face.
[21:37] * Raphael does seem heartened by all that, at least enough to look up from the floor just in time to catch the look on Misato's face. "What is it, Captain?"
[21:39] <Misato‘> "…" Misato’s face doesn't change for a minute or so. "… Raphael. If you lost someone really, really dear to you, how far would you go to bring them back?"
[21:42] <Raphael> "Well… I think that depends upon the cost." He says slowly. "Both to the world around you and to the person you're trying so hard to save. I'm not even sure if Rei's life was worth what they took from her, for example." Though, it must be said, he seems to have a hard time saying it.
[21:45] * Misato‘ nods. "They took an awful lot, huh." Mutters Misato. "That’s what's so really, truly disgusting, Raphael. You were in Algeria when Silas Caine marched up through the Sahara, right?"
[21:46] <Raphael> "That's right."
[21:48] <Misato‘> "Caines and Ikaris- both as bad as each other." She mutters. "I don’t know if you remember it. But do you remember EVA-05 going berserk?"
[21:54] * Raphael nods with a grim smile. "Oh yes. I found out later on that it wound up crushing the VTOL we crash-landed. Luckily we were well clear by then."
[21:56] <Misato‘> "… Eh, you were shot down?"
[21:57] <Raphael> "Pretty early on. My crew made it out just fine, thankfully." He says, shrugging slightly. "Do go on, though."
[21:59] <Misato`> "Eh…" Misato is quietly stunned for a moment before proceeding. "A-Anyway. I was there at the time myself as part of Tsubaki’s entourage. And I remember it pretty well." She says. "… You know, when EVA-04 goes berserk, it sounds like it's -mad-. Furious and insane. But when EVA-05 roared…"-
[21:59] <Misato‘> "It sounded like misery."
[22:08] <Raphael> "…" Raphael’s frown deepens, looking more like confusion than anger by the minute. "I'm sorry, Misato, but… what did Ikari have to do with all of that?"
[22:10] <Misato‘> "… Well, how much do you know about EVAs? You know they’re living things, right?"
[22:12] <Raphael> "… I don't ask a lot of questions." Raphael says uneasily. "That part was hard to miss after the first berserk, though."
[22:15] * Misato‘ nods slowly. "I don’t want to bog you down in the metaphysics or the biology. But simply put, they're more than just giant monsters. An Evangelion can produce an AT Field, but the only thing capable of producing AT Fields are sentient beings like you, or me, or the Angels. Beings with 'souls'." Says Misato. "You and I are producing one right now, but they're weak, invisible. All they do is keep our identities within us."
[22:25] <Raphael> The frown remains as Raphael listens. "So… they had to create some sort of artificial life, then? Like they did with Rei and her sisters?"
[22:28] * Misato‘ shakes her head. "You’re asking the wrong person for details, but the way I remember it, humans don't know how to create souls out of nowhere. We can only create souls when AT Fields meet during conception." She says. "For the Evangelions, and Rei, they had to take the souls from somewhere else."
[22:41] * Raphael tenses slightly. "So they managed to save Ikari Rei's soul, then? For Ayanami Rei." For a moment he sounds almost… hopeful.
[22:43] <Misato‘> "…" Misato looks away, even digging into some rice to slow the inevitable blow. "… They managed to save Ikari Rei’s soul. But… But it wasn't for Ayanami Rei." She looks crestfallen. "Shinji-kun was chosen as a pilot because he'd bond easily with EVA-05's soul. Rei's soul…"
[22:47] <Raphael> For a moment - a long moment - Raphael doesn't move. He doesn't breathe. He just stares at Misato, and for once that gaze that's usually so carefully impassive can't even begin to mask the hurt behind it.-
[22:48] <Raphael> It would seem to go on forever. But then, very slowly, he slides back the chair and gets to his feet. "I should go." He mutters.
[22:48] * Misato‘ looks up at him, clear dismay written on her face. "R-Raphael."
[22:50] <Raphael> "It’s fine. Don't worry about it, Misato.
[22:52] <Misato‘> "…" She looks away, towards the wall. "Please don’t hate me." She says quietly.
[22:56] <Raphael> "It's not you I hate." He says flatly… but still, he doesn't quite look at her as he says it. A moment later he would disappear through the door without looking back, shutting it behind him and leaving Misato alone.
[22:59] <Misato`> "…" She watches him go, her shoulders slumping as the door shuts. She stares sullenly down at her containers, closing her eyes. "Disgusting." She mumbles to herself. "Disgusting. Disgusting. Disgusting…" She repeats, like a mantra, before shaking her head. "… Just shut up."

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