She Said But Forgiveness Isn T Something That Comes That Eas

[20:13] * Yanmei was in a festive mood. Dressing up on around the holidays was really childish, so she had shunned holiday sweaters for a long time, save for that one awful one that Marianne had gotten her during her first winter in Paris-2.-
[20:17] <Yanmei> It was too hot to wear it now. Otherwise she would have been compelled to, because it made her guardian smile. This year she had found a silk red-and-white striped silk scarf to wear around her neck, and had decided that this was about the most festive that she was going to get. Besides, it worked well with the black dress she was wearing.-
[20:19] <Yanmei> But clothing aside, she had just been out shopping, and was making her first stop for the evening, at the hotel where she had head Aline was staying. Humming softly to herself, she strolled into the hotel lobby, gift bags in hand.
[20:28] * Aline was, herself, standing there, toting a single gift bag of her own. Let's say she found out about this, one way or another. The girl waited there, almost… absent-looking in her little blue-and-white outfit. …Was it a yukata?… Yes it was. She was actually dressing locally, how /interesting./ But she did, at length, wave to Yanmei. "Ah, uh… hi."
[20:37] <Yanmei> "Blanc." She tried not to stare. She supposed it made sense in a way, but… In any case, there was far more to be awkward about than just clothing. She hesitated. And then steeled herself again. She would make this quick. "Feeling better?"
[20:41] * Aline nodded weakly. "Some. I feel… strange. I also didn't feel right going for all… christmasyness. I can tell you're looking at me funny." But she didn't /seem/ to be that accusatory. "It's lightweight and I wasn't planning on going too much farther out than the hotel, so I wanted to try it out a bit." The girl then shrugged. "So you have gifts? I just got you one thing…"
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[20:43] <Yanmei> "The blue one is for Ikari. -Shinji-." It was very important to stress that. She didn't feel like passing out gifts to the rest of the family. The idea made her -sick- now. "The white one is yours." She held out the gift bags.
[20:49] * Aline sighed. "You could have just said his first name, you know." She… did pause, though. "Let's go to the lounge. This thing'll break if I'm not careful with it." She wagged the little red gift bag.
[20:51] <Yanmei> A slightly puzzled look, but she nodded and smiled a little. "It's actually a good look for you, by the way. It's unusual, but that doesn't mean that it's bad?"
[21:00] * Aline walked along with Yanmei, looking for a single, simple table - easy enough to find. But she smiled calmly as she set her giftbag down. And the one she intended for Yanmei, which she gently slid over. "Yeah, I know. It's not something to wear often, though."
[21:01] <Yanmei> "Obviously not. Where did you buy it from, anyway? I heard they were expensive." Yanmei slid into a seat, dropping her bags on the table as well.
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[21:08] <Aline> "I got it at a little store on the edge of town before the… incident. I wanted to look pretty and festive-ish." Aline frowned. "It's still nice, but it feels… ugh, weird. Weird, strange, all these things. Keep saying them. I suppose, yeah, I was right in saying 'some'." …But she slid the bag a little bit closer. "Go ahead and pull it out. It's just double-bagged."
[21:12] <Yanmei> "Well, all right!" So she did just that, trying to grow a bigger smile as she did so. The decorative bag first, and then the plain bag next. What was inside?
[21:17] <Aline> It was a tall bottle of sake! And a rather respectable label at that. Not quite tops, but still definitely more classy than, say, the booze Misato uses her fridge for. Aline did smile as Yanmei took it out, though. "I notice you like to drink more than I do, and I thought… I should get you something good but local. Souveniery. Since you…" She looked off into the distance. "Probably hate
[21:17] <Aline> everything about your stay here now. At least a good liquor would be a nice consolation prize, /and/ a solution to the problem?" …She wanted to laugh it off, but…
[21:21] <Yanmei> "Ah…" Yanmei's smile turned into a chuckle. An awkward one at those last few lines, though. She didn't know how else to react at the moment. "This isn't wine…? Ah. I think thing there were some of this at minifront. I didn't try any, though. Now I can. Thank you, Blanc."
[21:22] <Yanmei> She glanced to the bags she had brought, nodding to the smaller white one. "Go ahead."
[21:26] * Aline reached into it. "Alright then!" …reach reach. What would she find?~
[21:29] <Yanmei> A smaller felt box. And within that… earrings! Little silver heart-shaped ones. "I wanted to get a pair of the more glamorous ones they had on display, but even when they were on sale… well. It seems like I have bad luck with jewelry gifts." Yanmei grinned. "I hope these are okay."
[21:33] * Aline looked at them for a moment, and then smiled softly. "No, no, that'll be fine. 'glamorous'… Mmm, might not entirely fit me anyway. These are cute, though. Thanks." …Despite sounding a little cheery, Aline's tone (and word choice) sounded very clipped, forced, and other similar words. /Still/.
[21:37] <Yanmei> "You're welcome." Yanmei was still grinning, but she was looking at the table now, trying to find something more to say. "I don't know Shinji very well, so… I just got him some socks. It's so lame, right?" She chuckled again.
[21:40] * Aline tilted her head. "…Are you… sure that's the only reason?"
[21:43] <Yanmei> "…" Yanmei stared back at her for a moment. "I don't know what you mean by that, but…" An uncomfortable feeling. She had to resist looking away.
[21:45] * Aline narrowed her eyes. "I think you do, actually. He's, thankfully, the one least subject to it, but… Your stay is not the only thing you hate everything about now, isn't it?"
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[21:50] <Yanmei> "Now, why would I hate Shinji?" Yanmei folded her hands on the table. "If you're accussing me of something, it's better to come out and say it, isn't it?"
[21:52] <Aline> "Not Shinji in specific." Aline folded her hands, as well. "The Ikari family. Is it /just/ because Yui did something tremendously stupid by not understanding the first thing about sources of trauma, though?"
[21:56] <Yanmei> "Of course not. It's also because I found what she did to be terrible on -every conceivable level-. You disagree?" Her eyelashes lowered slightly. "The Commander kindly explained her motives behind it. But forgiveness isn't something that comes that easily."
[22:09] * Aline sighed heavily. "She mishandled it. That's all. Changing the nature of humanity is… eventually going to happen one way or another, and it will /never/ be something people are ready for. Using her dead daughter's body is… strange. Requires some level of understanding to even accept her reason. But it's… almost passable. Using her dead daughter's /mind/ imprint is… That is
[22:09] * Aline the part where I /do/ agree that it's just flat out wrong. You don't put a 6 year old's mind into a 15 year old body and expect their life to be anything but traumatic. And the girl's soul is in 05 - so in the way that most truly counts, she's still not the 'real' Rei Ikari." But then Aline shook her head. "That's the difference between us. When I look at the horrors and terrible decisions…
[22:09] * Aline I sigh and realize I have work ahead of me. The motivation is still pure, there's still /hope/ for bringing them around. Not like Azariah, who sacrifices love and happiness on an altar for his bullshit, and does so willingly. Not like Sera, who I /cannot comprehend/ right now. The most fucked up love is still /love/. There's hope of fixing them, especially Yui." Aline leaned on her arms.
[22:09] * Aline "That difference, is that I take that work and that hope and see it for what it is. You'd rather destroy them for having crossed a line at all."
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[22:30] * Yanmei stared at her for a long time. Then she began to stand up. "You." She sounded exhausted. "Why should I have hope in a disgusting woman like that? Why should I want to help someone who hurt the people I care about so badly? Who hurt -me-? I wasn’t as close to her as Isaiah was, but I liked Rei too!"-
[22:38] <Yanmei> "Should I just not take it personally? Should I pat her on the damned back and offer congratulations for a job well done? And her creations… I'm already aware that they're not Rei. But that doesn't mean I know what they are! I can acknowledge how useful they are. Twelve manufactured pilots means twelve fewer pilot selection meetings to worry about. Twelve fewer kids to end up in the same difficult position that we're in."-
[22:41] <Yanmei> "Twelve fewer chances for me to screw up in defending Isaiah against evidence that could be lobbed at him in those meetings by people like Ikari Gendo and Ginevre Fontaine, to solidify his candidicy as a pilot. But that's not entirely fair either, is it? Because I don't know what they are, I don't know if it's fair to force them to do something just like that. If I did -
[22:42] <Yanmei> "I'd be no better than those two. Or worse, the people who made Asuka and Jerkface and Atticus suffer so much. But hell… those were probably the same people, right?"-
[22:43] * Yanmei leaned back a little. "Since you're so good at telling me how I should feel about things, why don't you tell me how I should feel about the MP-Pilots too? I would appreciate it oh so much."
[23:15] * Aline stared. "You won't understand. It's always one or the other. Hate them totally, or help them totally. Since you, yet again, believe my advice is so imperious, so forced, and so smug, that you'll totally ignore it in favor of your own little hateworld. Your own black-and-white view of reality. Which is funny, since you always seem so cynical and willing to accept that even good people
[23:15] * Aline could hurt you. But still, you can't see the path that doesn't take any side at all." She grabbed onto the table slightly, squeezing a little. "To expect me to ask you to congratulate her is /stupid/, Yanmei. You keep talking about how I assume things about you, how I don't understand you… and you're not even /trying/ to understand me. It's like anything we may have understood during that
[23:15] * Aline stupid training session was just a tiny little blip. No, what I am going to do - and I mean /I/, not you - is to tell her exactly how greatly she screwed up, and try to tell her what the people she ended up hurting felt. If I can tell inhuman creatures what human society is like and make it stick, I can probably tell people who've lost touch with their humanity what they're forgetting, and
[23:15] * Aline make /that/ stick. Speaking of which…" Aline's grip intensified, but then she let go, putting the hand on her lap. "Protecting Isaiah is noble. Becoming so obsessed with protecting him that you'll hate everyone, right or wrong, who even so much as looks at him in a way that displeases you? Is disgusting. He has a life too, and more than anything else, he has a right to stand up for himself
[23:15] * Aline too. Voriel said it best this way - Humanity needs love to counter the weaknesses of their souls. I take that to mean that the unity gained from truly loving and understanding someone will strengthen your will, enlighten your mind, and give you peace - all of which are far harder to achieve when you are truly alone." The girl had never cheered up visibly since her last frown, but… it
[23:16] * Aline deepened, became even more upset. "But the same emotions that love inspires… breed jealousy, possessiveness, control, fear, submission, weakness, when anything is imbalanced. And I think, since Yui's /grave/ mistake ended up hurting Isaiah - even if it hurt you too - you've let that blind you with the need to control his safety. Because?" Aline leaned back further, and looked soooo damn
[23:16] * Aline unamused. "You then forget that anyone else loves. Isaiah becomes more important than my love for Shinji. Becomes more important than you going through the day without everyone around you in suffering and hating you - justifiably - for hurting them in tenfold of what he took. Have you even /asked/ him what he feels? Hugged and comforted him? Tried to see what you could do to make him feel
[23:16] * Aline better? Or did you just target the ones responsible for your rage and call it a day?"
[23:22] <Yanmei> "Ah, this just keeps getting better and better. You complain about me not understanding you, and then you throw that monologue out. Because -you've- clearly been watching me through S2 feeds. Not only that, you've gained an awareness of my thoughts and emotions better than I ever could. Well done!" Yanmei offered a quiet little clap.-
[23:28] <Yanmei> "You're absolutely right. I don't care about Isaiah at all. I roped him into an unhealthy relationship so that I could control him and find excuses to hate everything! It was totally working too. I mean, how many people did I attack since this trip began, just for hurting him? One hundred, two hundred… no, no, I definitely think it was three hundred. And of course-
[23:33] <Yanmei> after the lab incident, I punched him a few times in the face instead comforting him. It's a routine, you know. Because I don't rely on him at all. I've never needed to rely on him, or make things up to him. I'm not capable of feeling love and tenderness. I can't be supportive. I can only dwell in rage and all sorts of other bleak things."-
[23:34] <Yanmei> "Isn't that right, Aline Blanc?!"
[23:40] * Aline narrowed her eyes. Her tone was oppressively… flat. "Control his safety, not him, you idiot. Protect him so hard that reality itself loses meaning. But it won't matter that I made that clarification. As usual, nobody listens, and certainly won't ever give me any insight other than 'you're wrong! fuck you! die!' in far more words with far more situational detail. I hope your shopping
[23:40] * Aline for other people goes better. Keep the sake - even if you don't feel like accepting a gift from me anymore, just get rid of it or leave it for the hotel staff." Aline stood up, taking her gift bag and, if it was close enough to her to look like she could, the one meant for Shinji. She began to walk off. "I wonder if we'll even last to see the end of this war, or our minds will shatter before
[23:40] * Aline then." She fully expected Yanmei to not accept her doing this, so she tensed up.
[23:45] <Yanmei> There was the sound of shattering glass behind her. "It's because you -are- wrong!"
[23:50] <Yanmei> "And you -never- listen, even when people say things plainly! You didn't listen back at the lab, and you're not listening now, and you don't care! When I get angry its because I'm wrong, and if I'm protecting someone with every fibre of my being it's because I'm misguided and I so consumed by emotion that I mindlessly hate everything threatening to that person.-
[23:54] <Yanmei> "And if I tell you to stop doing things that are obviously going to lead to no good, it's because my judgement is lousy, and then that -thing- in your head takes control and I have to end up fighting it!" Her voice cracked. She swallowed.-
Session Time: Tue Aug 23 00:00:00 2011
[00:00] <Yanmei> "Ikari Yui did something despicable to earn my anger. I sat down with Ikari Gendo and learned he was the sort of man who would oppose my efforts to keep Isaiah out of the entry plug. That's six months of networking and learning and crawling around on my belly to find some influence that amount to anything at all against the Directors."-
[00:06] <Yanmei> "I'm saying it again. PLAINLY. My anger is justified! My mistrust is justified! And you are -wrong-, so fuck you and die!" Ignoring stares, the girl pivoted, and was storming from the seating area to the doors of the lobby, her damp footsteps leaving a trail behind her.
[00:11] * Aline sighed deeply, and kept walking, her only hope was that Yanmei was storming out, not after her. But… "It's fine. I deserve it. I'm the death of everything I'll ever care about, and that'd include what you'd care about. It's only right to hate that, for any reason. Even her mistakes. Have a better day." …Keep walking. Try to get to the elevator. And don't immediately go to the
[00:11] * Aline floor of your room.
[00:14] <Yanmei> The fronts doors of the hotel opened and shut, not with a crash, but with the cheerful jingle of the Christmas bells that were decorating the handles.

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