Raphael S Fatherhood

[16:09] <Raphael> The medical wing of the Geofront is packed to bursting, filled with the hundreds of walking wounded and the patients whose condition was too critical to move them to the less chaotic facilities on the battleship. It would take a small miracle for most people to find a quiet, isolated room, but luckily there were some who had the power to make such things happen.-
[16:09] <Raphael> Raphael awakes with a start, feeling the new aches in his back from the painfully uncomfortable hospital chair accompanying the older ones from the battle and clean up. He had not intended to fall asleep, had meant to watch over his charge, but as the time passed and the exhaustion took hold, even the hellish chair he'd found had seemed too comfortable…-
[16:09] <Raphael> He sighs and massages his neck with one hand, giving the figure on the bed a worried look…
[16:19] <@Minaplo> [On the bed lay Rei Ayanami, her slender body covered by a thin hospital bedsheet. She was sleeping the restless, disturbed sleep of someone exhausted and tired and traumatised; her head tossed and turned. Her chest and arms were bandaged excessively, as was her right eye and neck. There were other bandages as well, not immediately visible.]
[16:25] <Raphael> Whatever brief spell of peace sleep had granted him disappears almost as soon as he gets a look at her face, his jaw tightening as a frown creases his brow. The urge to Fix Things - all the things that are causing her such pain - is overwhelming, but he forces it down. For now all he can do is wait.
[16:34] <@Minaplo> [But waiting there, with nothing but Rei's heart monitor to listen to, seemed to induce an almost fugue-like state. His mind wandered, thoughts going back to what had happened. It would've been about forty minuted after the end of the battle, Raphael was on clean-up…]
[16:46] <Raphael> Directing the cleanup on the western lines had been no easy feat, not with the bodies ankle deep, cultist and NERV dead alike stacked like cordwoord. Motorized carts normally used for moving equipment around the base had been quickly repurposed for their new task, and were now being loaded with bodies by teams of marines.
[17:03] <@Minaplo> ["Mary, mother of God." had muttered William Weiss-Xylander, standing at Raphael's shoulder. "And I thought the south line was bad."]
[17:09] <Raphael> "It's a mess." Raphael had agreed, his voice raised to be heard over the whine and grind of cutting tools being used to take apart the fallen Annihilators. For a moment his eyes had fallen on the place he'd seen the Spectre fall, drawing a deep frown - Its (Her?) body had been one of the first things to go, spirited away under heavy guard.
[17:11] <@Minaplo> ["Eurgh." William bent down, picking up a severed banshee's head. Its face was frozen in a grotesque expression of sadistic monstrosity. "And Rei -lives- with one of these things?"]
[17:14] * Raphael shrugged. "I don't think she really pays how he looks much mind."
[17:16] <@Minaplo> ["Really?" William stared at it skeptically. A line of drool was dripping from its maw onto William's sleeve- where, with a hiss, it began to burn a hole through the fabric. With a yelp he tossed the head against the ground.-
[17:17] <@Minaplo> [Footsteps from HQ, as Mana appeared, her eyes slightly glassy but her expression quickly becoming focused. "Captain Guillory!"]
[17:20] * Raphael moved quickly, meeting her halfway with a concerned expression. "Sergeant Kirishima? What is it?"
[17:22] <@Minaplo> ["HQ reports an AT Field signature moving down the western elevator shaft. We need to go investigate."]
[17:25] * Raphael 's frown grew even deeper as he nodded and took up the bolter slung over one shoulder - The strange rifle had been quickly taken by Surov once the battle had ended, and was likely already back inside its vault. "Understood, Sergeant." He nods, pausing to transfer command to one of the marines before rushing off.
[17:27] <@Minaplo> [William and Mana followed, their guns at the ready.-
[17:27] <@Minaplo> [The entire path towards the elevator was strewn with corpses- mostly cultists- and it made for slow going, but eventually they'd come to the elevator, just in time to see…-
[17:28] <@Minaplo> [A banshee appeared. William readied his gun instantly, but Raphael would notice the clothes it wore, and the discerning look of awareness and intelligence in its eye. In -his- eye. It was Ban-Ban.-
[17:34] <@Minaplo> [But Raphael would find his gaze drawn to what Ban-Ban held in his hand-arms. A shape- a familiar one. An Ayanami. Rei. And it -was- Rei; she was wearing her pink battle-dress- but she was clearly wounded. Blood poured across her face from a would over her right eye, and her left arm was tucked in against her chest. She looked like a child. She was muttering and murmuring something to herself in a breathless, panicky voice.]
[17:47] <Raphael> "Rei!" He gasped, a horrified sound as he rushed forward to gather her up in his arms, taking her gently away from Ban-Ban with a murmur of thanks for the banshee. "Ssssh, ssssh. It's ok. You're safe now."
[17:52] <@Minaplo> [She let out a gasp of pain, spasming slightly and arching her back. Raphael's hand suddenly felt wet, and he'd notice the blood on Ban-Ban's hands.-
[17:53] <@Minaplo> ["Al…" Rei's words became feverish, louder. "They took him, Al, they took Al, Alphonse, Alphonse- help… Dad… Raffy, help, Al…"]
[18:04] * Raphael 's heart lurched sickeningly at the blood, and the words and… And he takes a deep breath and tries to keep his voice calm. "It'll be ok, sweetheart. It'll be alright." He said, pressing on a little faster as he tries to soothe her out of her frenzy. "Just… save your breath. You don't need to talk. We'll get him back, I promise."-
[18:04] * Raphael turned his gaze to Ban-Ban, and though his eyes were narrowed the cold, blank fury there was quite evident. "Who." He says flatly. "Who did this?"
[18:10] <@Minaplo> ["She… Left plenty of injured for me to interrogate." Said Ban-Ban. "It seems as though they're… Mafia."]
[18:14] * Raphael nodded sharply as he began moving hurriedly back down the hall towards HQ. "Then we'll find them." He growled, stroking Rei's hair with his less bloodied hand. "You'll help us, Ban-Ban?"
[18:15] <@Minaplo> ["As best I can." Said Ban-Ban, following back down the hall. "Please… Look after her. Take her somewhere safe for now. I shall assist these men in cleaning up here."]
[18:17] <Raphael> Perhaps at a different time that may have given him pause, but he was too concerned to do anything but nod. "Pilot Weiss, Sergeant Kirishima, I'll see to Rei. Stay and assist here, if you would."
[18:17] <@Minaplo> ["Understood, sir." Said Mana.-
[18:17] <@Minaplo> ["On it." Said William.-
18:18] <@Minaplo> [Raphael would've noticed that, just like his other hand, the hand that stroked Rei's hair would quickly be coated in blood as well.]
[18:21] * Raphael had moved away without another word. His attention was on Rei, murmuring quiet reassurances as he picked a path through the bodies on the way to the HQ triage.
[18:37] <@Minaplo> [And there she had been put down to rest, and there she'd fallen into a fitful, troubled sleep…-
[18:37] <@Minaplo> [And eventually so had Raphael.]
[18:40] <Raphael> And now it was taking all his strength to stop himself from doing so again. Exhaustion had settled over him like a blanket, muddling his thoughts and making his attention wander.
[18:42] <@Minaplo> [Outside, he'd hear the muted squeaking of a wheelchair trundling along, but it was so distant it might as well have belonged to another world…-
[18:42] <@Minaplo> [… But that world was quickly infringing on his. Knock, knock, knock at the door. A feeble knock.]
[18:47] <Raphael> "Nngh." Raphael groans, shaking himself back into lucidity and getting to his feet to open the door and peek his head curiously out into the hall.
[18:51] <@Minaplo|Food> [Sitting in a wheelchair, looking tired and uncomfortable and in a good deal of pain, was none other than Chiisana Himesama, her limbs bound with state-of-the-art NERV 'limb mittens', which covered them entirely, and were purported to speed up the broken bone healing process. She looked up at Raphael wordlessly.]
[19:07] <Raphael> His first instinct is to reach out and hug her - he was, after all, surprised to see her alive, let alone mobile - but her fragile condition is enough to put that idea to rest. And even then, he doubts Himesama would take kindly to such a surprise even on her best day.-
[19:07] <Raphael> Instead he steps out into the hall, giving her a warm smile even through his obvious concern. "Chiisana." He murmurs, shutting the door gently behind him. "It's so good to see you awake. When you were hurt…" He shakes his head. "I was concerned."
[19:19] <@Minaplo> ["In truth, so was I." Said Chiisana dryly. "I cannot be certain, but I suspect I broke a land speed record on my way to such complete injuries. But I awoke, and that is something."]
[19:21] <Raphael> "It is that." He smiles. "I assume you're here to check on Rei? She's not awake yet, but I can tell her you came by…"
[19:43] <@Minaplo> ["No, it's good that she's asleep." Said Chiisana quietly. "I did come to check on her, but there are a few things I wished to discuss. With you."]
[19:46] <Raphael> "With me." Raphael repeats mildly, giving her a curious look before nodding. "Alright, then. Should we find somewhere out of the way?"
[19:47] <@Minaplo> ["Here is fine, actually. Although if you wish to go, that is also fine. It won't really matter, NERV's security cameras have been taken offline."]
[19:50] <Raphael> "Mmm." He nods, glancing around the hall. There's still people moving to and fro, or waiting in chairs, but most of the real chaos is going on in the open wards. "I'm fine with staying here, ma'am."
[19:52] <@Minaplo> ["Fair enough." Chiisana wheels towards Rei, and it's important to note that she doesn't move her arms or even touch the wheels; they just move of their own accord.-
[19:53] <@Minaplo> ["Oh, Rei." Murmurs Chiisana sadly. "They took Alphonse. I can't even begin to imagine how she feels."]
[20:44] * Raphael shakes his head gently, moving to retake his spot by her bed. "Still, as soon as the situation in the Geofront's stable Marianne's promised me enough troops for a rescue. It won't be long."
[20:48] <@Minaplo> ["It won't be quick enough. It'll never be quick enough." Murmured Chiisana. "The moment Rei wakes up, and she can walk, she'll be out of here as quickly as she can."]
[20:53] <Raphael> That just earns a sigh. "I know. I'll do what I can to have her stay put, but I don't think even I'll be able to make her listen."
[20:54] <@Minaplo> ["No one can. It's a strange thing." Said Chiisana.-
[20:56] <@Minaplo> ["Rei and I are Ayanamis. We understand the difference between loyalty and obedience. We are born obedient. We're given orders and we're expected to follow them. If ordered to die, then we will obey and we will die."-
[20:57] <@Minaplo> ["But there are a few people each that we are loyal to. You're one of them for both of us, I think, although Rei feels much more strongly about it than I do." Chiisana smiles. "Simply put, loyalty and obedience aren't the same thing to an Ayanami. We'll obey and die, but we'll fight to live for someone we're loyal to, and that's why Rei won't obey you if you tell her to stay put."-
[20:57] <@Minaplo> ["I wouldn't obey either, actually."]
[21:01] * Raphael nods slowly, rubbing his eyes. "And neither would I, in a similar position. Which doesn't change the fact that she's lucky to be alive right now. A fight in this condition is sure to kill her."
[21:03] <@Minaplo> ["True enough." Said Chiisana. "It wouldn't be the first time a stubborn Ayanami got involved in a fight against cooler heads, would it? I seem to remember a grim young captain coming to my rescue at some point, only to have the tables turned on him…?"]
[21:05] * Raphael smiles faintly. "I had the situation well in hand, ma'am."
[21:08] <@Minaplo> ["Of course, of course." Said Chiisana airily- before giving Raphael a shrewd look. "It's a pity Auntie Misato took you first. I think you'd have made an excellent husband for me. You know, eventually. After you'd matured a little."]
[21:19] <Raphael> For a moment Raphael just gives Chiisana an awkward, uncertain look, before finally his shoulders begin shaking with silent laughter. "Oh of course, Miss Chiisana."
[21:19] <@Minaplo> [Chiisana gives him a smile. "Feeling a little better?"]
[21:22] <Raphael> "Marginally." He murmurs with a smirk, scratching his cheek.
[21:22] <@Minaplo> ["Good."-
[21:22] <@Minaplo> [Chiisana, to her credit, pauses for a few seconds before continuing. "I know about the Disciples."]
[21:25] * Raphael 's smirk doesn't so much vanish as it does -collapse-. He stares at her in silence for a few long seconds, measuring how to proceed. "… Who told you?"
[21:27] <@Minaplo> ["That's something of a long story. Tell me, are you aware that some people- pilots, usually- are capable of experiencing memories from past lives?"]
[21:30] * Raphael nods again. "So I've been told."
[21:31] <@Minaplo> ["Often this is due to the souls of their Evangelions waking their memories… But there's a curious thing to note, Raphael. You've never seen a Master Model Eva berserk, have you?"]
[21:33] * Raphael shakes his head.
[21:34] <@Minaplo> ["It's considered one of their selling points. They don't berserk, not like the Production Models or the Test-Type or what-have-you. For awhile I simply believed as everyone else did, that the Master Models were just inherently easier to control. But then, I found myself in combat with Gabriel, and something very curious happened."]
[21:36] <Raphael> "And that was…?"
[21:39] <@Minaplo> ["I felt myself falling into a trance. Almost as though I was unconscious, and my body began moving in strange ways… But it was all over, with seemingly no real effect." Said Chiisana slowly. "As it turns out, my Evangelion exhibited all the proper signs of a 'berserk', except, ultimately, it remained under my control."-
[21:40] <@Minaplo> ["It took me a moment to realise: the souls of the Master Models are dormant. That's why they don't properly berserk."]
[22:03] * Raphael raises an eyebrow. "Is that possible? I don't claim to be an expert, but weren't souls required to… 'connect', I suppose?"
[22:06] <@Minaplo> ["They do, as far as I know." Said Chiisana. "To use the AT Field, and so on. Here's where things become… Metaphysical. The souls of the Master Models are dormant because we Ayanamis don't connect with them. We just overpower them and make them do what we want. So to speak."]
[22:08] <Raphael> "I… see." Raphael says slowly, trying to sound more certain than he is.
[22:14] <@Minaplo> ["The thing is that an Ayanami shouldn't be able to overpower an Evangelion. When an Ayanami uses her AT Field to, say, set fire to an Iron Guard-" She gave Raphael a wry look- "We're borrowing that power from the Disciples. The only reason we have that power is because those bodies are also 'our' bodies, and since they have power, we do."-
[22:14] <@Minaplo> ["If you were to destroy the bodies completely, tomorrow? We'd lose all our powers."-
[22:14] <@Minaplo> ["Even so, those Disciples shouldn't have enough power to completely overwhelm an Evangelion, which has a far more powerful AT Field."]
[22:20] * Raphael considers this quietly, trying to keep up as best he can. "… So I take it you have a theory about that, ma'am?"
[22:20] <@Minaplo> ["Yes. My… 'theory' was that we Ayanamis are able to dominate the souls of our Evangelions because our souls are actually one and the same, split in half."-
[22:21] <@Minaplo> ["And that theory was confirmed by someone named Vercingetorix." She said, looking back at Raphael.]
[22:29] * Raphael 's eyes narrow very faintly as he meets Chiisana's gaze, taking silent measure of what he finds there before relaxing again. "You know more secrets than you let on, Miss Chiisana."
[22:31] <@Minaplo> ["I'm good at keeping secrets. I am also considered intimidatingly competent." She said boldly.-
[22:33] <@Minaplo> ["Of course, I am trusting you with this because as I said before, I am loyal to you. My sister loves you dearly, you know." She gave Rei a fond look. "You've always been a friend to the Ayanamis. You won't betray us, or hurt us. I'm telling you this because you're one of the few people who both have the power to use this information, but to do so with our best interests at heart."]
[22:38] <Raphael> "Of course, ma'am. No need to be concerned on that account." He says, giving her a small, warm smile. "Although if I'm honest, I'm not sure what can be done with this information…"
[22:39] <@Minaplo> ["Perhaps something will come to you." Murmured Chiisana. "Sooner or later. Generally speaking, if one is going to be playing the game, one wants to have the card in their deck. It's no use joining the tournament with half a deck."]
[22:48] * Raphael nods, but he's watching her curiously nontheless. "Understood. The information is appreciated, then."
[22:51] <@Minaplo> ["Good."-
[22:51] <@Minaplo> ["…" Chiisana looked vaguely uncomfortable. She glanced at Raphael cautiously, then back to Rei. "… The Spectre is… A conundrum, is it not?" She asked awkwardly.]
[23:04] * Raphael goes suddenly still, fixing Chiisana with a flat stare. "Ah excellent, you know about it as well. I was going to bring my questions to Pilot de Pteres, but this saves time."
[23:06] <@Minaplo> ["I'll be honest, Raphael: I genuinely have no idea about it. The Spectre looks like Rei, but it's not an Ayanami. It has a core."]
[23:09] <Raphael> "Mmh. Perhaps it's a…" He waves his hand vaguely, making a face, "A shapeshifter, or something like that."
[23:10] <@Minaplo> ["Something like that." Murmured Chiisana. "But that's not the only explanation, is it? Only the most comforting."]
[23:14] <Raphael> "… Yes." He admits after a moment, shoulders sagging. "I suppose I'll need to make some enquiries into the matter."
[23:18] <@Minaplo> ["Agreed." Chiisana rubbed her chin. "Could someone have stolen Ayanami DNA? But then they'd have to have the facilities needed to create a clone." Said Chiisana. "Not to mention ready access to our DNA. And then they'd need the expertise needed to 'create' Cores, however one manages that. Would they need to splice Ayanami and Angel DNA? That's lethal at such high levels, especially with a template as precise as Ayanami DNA. They'd have to be insane…"]
[23:27] <@Minaplo> [Doctor Barzilai Surov stared at them both, his eyes flat, his expression impatient, light glinting off of his glasses. Behind him, the MAGI worked on a hundred tasks at once. The Tech Division labs were nearly empty.-
[23:27] <@Minaplo> ["Well?"]
[23:12] <Raphael> "As I said, Doctor, we had some questions regarding the Ayanamis." Raphael said calmly, meeting Surov's stare. "Specifically whether there was ever any work done with enhancing them with a core, either by you or anyone previously involved in the project."
[23:15] <Minaplo> ["The Ayanamis? No. Why would they need a core? They have perfectly functioning AT Fields." Said Surov sharply.]
[23:17] * Raphael glances at Chiisana, obviously feeling somewhat out of his depth in this particular matter.
[23:20] <Minaplo> [Chiisana glances back. "Just ask him straight out."]
[23:22] * Raphael grunts his assent after a moment, folding his hands behind his back. "We're looking into the origins of the Spectre, Doctor."
[23:23] <Minaplo> ["I see."]
[23:24] <Raphael> "…" Raphael eyes Surov flatly, as if waiting for him to expand on the statement.
[23:25] <Minaplo> [Surov simply stares back. "Well? What do you want?" He snaps irritably.]
[23:27] <Raphael> "Quite frankly, Doctor? Of the well-known scientists who could have had a hand in it, it seemed to us like you were one of the more likely candidates."
[23:27] <Minaplo> ["What a logical deduction."]
[23:32] * Raphael sighs, patience already heavily frayed from the past few days wearing thinner with each passing moment. "With all due respect, Surov? You would rather we were not here. We would prefer not to be here. You understand what we are asking, so I would ask that you either tell us or don't." Raphael's voice is remarkably even, given his words.
[23:33] <Minaplo> ["Then just ask it flat-out, you simpleton! Stop wasting my time with your childish insinuations and politicking!"]
[23:39] * Raphael stares at Surov evenly for a moment, hands flexing gently behind his back, safely out of sight. "Were you involved with the creation of the Spectre, or are you aware of anyone who was?" Raphael asks coldly.
[23:40] <Minaplo> ["Yes, I was." Said Surov flatly without a moment of hesitation.]
[23:42] * Raphael nods once. "During your time with the LN, I assume? Perhaps with samples taken from Miss Chiisana before we recovered her?"
[23:51] <Minaplo> ["Yes. The preliminary stages involved analysing Shi's blood samples, although at that point I was curious as to their capabilities, not intending to create anything. The analysis was disappointing." Said Surov flatly. "Capabilities were excellent for human beings but far below even the Tactical Evangelion. The Third Generation Guard I was in the process of making would shred an Ayanami."-
[23:53] <Minaplo> ["But then an Iron Guard reported being sliced open by AT Field powers, and I was curious. You can't simply make human beings use AT Fields without Cores. It isn't possible. But the samples showed nothing."-
[23:55] <Minaplo> ["So I hacked the MAGI and retrieved the data on the Ayanamis."]
[23:58] <Raphael> "… Hacked the MAGI." Raphael repeated, giving the Doctor a blank look. "I was under the impression that such a thing was almost impossible, Doctor."
[23:59] <Minaplo> ["'Almost impossible', he says, sitting next to a girl who can shut down physical laws at a whim." Scoffed Surov. "I have cybernetic implants in nearly three quarters of my brain, Guillory."-
Session Time: Thu Jan 24 00:00:00 2013
[00:01] <Minaplo> ["… Although I will be honest, the effort left me blind for six days. The MAGI is very powerful." He glanced up at the computer screen behind him with something approaching genuine fondness. "Technological supremacy combined with such organic ingenuity! But yes, I hacked it, and no, it is not something I would do again lightly."]
[00:07] * Raphael 's eyebrow inches up at even such a mild display of affection, but he doesn't see fit to comment. "And whatever you found was enough to replicate and adapt your own version of the Ayanami process."
[00:11] <Minaplo> ["Yes, although I didn't. What would be the point?" He asked. "The Ayanamis would be weaker than an Iron Guard and lack an AT Field. All I would gain from it would be Ayanami clones. Since I am not Yui Ikari, I lack the 'grown up daughter clone' fetish, and so the data remained unused."-
[00:11] <Minaplo> [Chiisana let out a snort.]
[00:20] * Raphael 's lip curls in obvious distaste. "So." He continues. "The data has been in the wild since before the LN fell. Do you have any idea who took up the project?"
[00:21] <Minaplo> ["The project to create the Spectre?"]
[00:21] * Raphael nods.
[00:22] <Minaplo> ["Yes." Said Surov. "I created the Spectre from start to finish."]
[00:26] * Raphael frowns, obviously not quite following. "But you said…"
[00:28] <Minaplo> ["I said I found the data and didn't use it to create Ayanamis. I -couldn't- create Ayanamis. I don't have any spare Disciple souls." Said Surov. "I was ordered to create an Iron Guard using the Ayanami data, that is the difference."]
[00:41] <Raphael> The expression of distaste only seems to grow. "I see." He murmurs, looking over at Chiisana again for some hint of how she's taking all of this.
[00:43] <Minaplo> [Chiisana is watching him intently, seemingly not disturbed by the frankness of it all. "But wait." She turned to Raphael, frowning. She beckoned him closer.]
[00:47] * Oat has joined #nervfrance
[00:47] * Raphael has quit IRC (Ping timeout)
[00:48] * Oat is now known as Raphael
[00:56] * Raphael crouches lower to bring himself level with Chiisana's wheelchair.
[01:03] <Minaplo> ["There's more to this than just biology. It's a clone, he needs a soul."]
[01:13] * Raphael frowns deeper, nodding as his attention returns to Surov. "And the soul, Doctor?"
[01:14] <Minaplo> ["One half of the Angel Ramliel, as ordered."]
[01:16] * Raphael shuts his eyes and groans. "And you've known all of this from the outset." Raphael says flatly. "And yet you've not bothered to tell anyone."
[01:17] <Minaplo> ["Do you tell everyone everything -you- know without being asked, Guillory?" Snapped Surov. "Since no one seemed to think it was important enough to ask me, I told no one."]
[01:19] * Raphael grits his teeth. "For a smart man, Doctor, that is a frankly absurd response." He says coldly.
[01:22] <Minaplo> ["Really. Imagine that. Raphael Guillory, the great meddler, thinking others are absurd." Said Surov sarcastically. "I am not one of your pet Ayanamis or one of your many women. I do not care if you think my response is absurd."]
[01:31] <Raphael> "We have lost good people and tied up our forces for -months- trying to find and stop her." Raphael snaps, his patience finally breaking. Worry about the battle, Rei, Alphonse… somewhere deep down, anger was beginning to bubble to the surface. "All of that could have been avoided if you'd just opened your damned mouth. Doesn't that mean -anything- to you?"
[01:32] <Minaplo> ["No." Said Surov simply.]
[01:40] * Raphael holds his ground for some long, silent moment, eyes blazing with anger just waiting to be vented as he stares down Surov, struggling against his better nature.-
[01:40] <Raphael> But in the end it's enough to hold back the frustration and anger and grief of the past few days, if only for long enough to turn on his heel with a snarl and begin the walk towards the exit. "Come along, Miss Chiisana. We have what we need."
[01:42] <Minaplo> [Chiisana gives him a deeply worried glance as she turns in her chair to follow.-
[01:45] <Minaplo> [There's a dispassionate look on Surov's face. "Don't go just yet, Guillory. Master Vercingetorix would prefer it if I told you one other thing."]
[01:46] * Raphael lets out a deep sigh, coming to a stop without turning around to face Surov.
[01:48] <Minaplo> ["I had to steal half of Ramliel's soul from Azariah Caine. He didn't give it willingly."]
[01:49] * Zack is now known as ZackSleep
[01:49] * Raphael 's nod is slight at best. "And what does that mean for us?"
[01:51] <Minaplo> [Surov let out a sigh. "It means Azariah Caine wasn't the one who ordered me to create the Spectre."]
[01:57] * Raphael is completely still for a moment, every muscle pulled taut as he carries this thought through to its logical conclusion. "Vercinogetorix?" He asks, his voice painfully level.
[01:57] <Minaplo> ["Mary Caine."]
[02:00] * Raphael 's hands ball into fists. For a moment he tenses, seemingly ready to round on Surov again, but after a moment he simply disappears through the door without another word.
[02:00] <Minaplo> [Chiisana was out after him in an instant. Surov didn't waste anytime. He was back to the MAGI.-
[02:01] <Minaplo> ["Raphael. Raphael, wait." Called Chiisana as she propelled herself after him.]
[02:03] * Raphael stops again a short way down the hall, shoulders hitching for a moment as he takes a deep breath and seems to force the tension out of his posture. When he turns his face is rigid, but calm. "My apologies, Miss Chiisana."
[02:04] <Minaplo> ["I quite understand." Said Chiisana, and now that they're out of Surov's presence she can relax and let her various emotions show. Irritation and anger and disgust- a lot of disgust- and contempt, but also fear. "I was just worried about you is all. You've had a long day. You should lay down, have something to eat."]
[02:06] <Raphael> Another deep breath - shakier this time as the adrenaline begins to fade. He nods, running both hands through his hair. "… Maybe." He murmurs.-
[02:07] <Raphael> Still, he fixes her with a worried stare. "Are you alright?"
[02:08] <Minaplo> ["A little shaken. Surov is a beast, but that I knew. That Mary Caine has at least one super-powered agent with incredible powers- that I did not. What if she makes more? She would no doubt have the Ayanami template by now, and the same facilities Surov had. She could create an army."]
[02:15] * Raphael nods, chewing his lip. "It would surprise me if that was not her aim." He mutters. "Granted, if the soul of Ramiel plays a significant part in her power she could be a…" He searches for the words, only to come up with one that draws further disgust, "A 'concept model'."
[02:15] <Minaplo> ["That's true. She does not have unlimited Angel souls." Said Chiisana contemplatively.]
[02:19] <Raphael> "We'll need to bring this to the Colonel. Perhaps she can glean some details from Surov that will prove useful if she turns hostile, or we encounter copies." He continues. "Vercinogetorix is aware of the problem, but I doubt we can produce a great deal of countermeasures if Caine does decide to move them into mass production."
[02:21] <Minaplo> ["You're right." Said Chiisana. "But the Colonel's occupied with the plans for combat right now, and besides, we'd have to talk to her in person; the VTOLs are all tied up with supply runs. The best we can do now is get you ship-shape in bristol fashion once more."]
[02:23] <Raphael> Even with anger bubbling away under the surface, Raphael is in control enough to raise an eyebrow at that. "Since when were you the one who worried about me, Miss Chiisana?"
[02:25] <Minaplo> ["My dear Raphael, I've been worried about you since the first day we met." She said fondly. "I'm not the one who pilots the T-RIDEN-T, leads dangerous missions all over the world, routinely gets into dangerous situations, and then cares for everyone he can, including eleven unique, confused teenage girls making their way through the world."]
[02:28] * Raphael chuckles, but there's a soft smile on his face. "You overestimate me, ma'am." He says mildly, giving her uninjured shoulder a very gentle squeeze.-
[02:30] <Raphael> "Well, come along, then." He says, putting his hands in his pockets. "I suppose - as the injured young lady here - you ought to eat, and if you're doing that you'll need someone to keep an eye on you."
[02:31] <Minaplo> ["Very well." She sighed. "It's a shame. Ban-Ban is going to be eating much better than we will tonight."]
[02:33] * Raphael shakes his head slightly, clearly somewhat disturbed by the idea. "So long as he restricts himself to the spawn."
[02:34] <Minaplo> ["Oh, he will. He's not a brute." Said Chiisana. "But he never passes up the chance to eat fresh Angelspawn meat. He says it's good for the body."]
[02:37] <Raphael> "I'll take his word for it…"
[02:37] <Minaplo> ["Oh? But are you not the infamous Maltese Vampire? He who dines on the hearts of a thousand Iron Guard?"]
[02:38] <Raphael> "All rumour, I assure you." He murmurs, waving his hand.-
[02:39] <Raphael> "It was a hundred at best."

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