They Took My Wings They Took Me Apart Made Me Human I Was Th

[06:18] <Marianne> [[Session 49: NEON GENESIS EVANGELION. Date: 16th of May, 2017. Episode Title: They took my wings; they took me apart, made me human; I was the fallen Angel.-
[06:20] <Marianne> [The Eva units sat in their cages, Plugs loaded. Far above them, they could hear the ground rumbling as other battlegroups took off, headed south. Their own synchronisation had already been finished.-
[06:22] <Marianne> "Prepare launch in four minutes. Remember, Pilots- we hit Algiers first, then we cut across the continent and hit Nairobi-2- with any luck we'll reach the city by early tomorrow. This is it. Any questions before we begin launch sequence?"
[06:29] * Aline shook her head with a level of grim finality. "…None here."
[06:31] <Yanmei> "Any reports available on the enemy's movements so far? Or will we just have to see what happens when we arrive?"
[06:31] <Sept> "Has the city been evacuated?"
[06:34] <Marianne> "From what we can tell, yes, Sera." Said Marianne. "And Yanmei, I'll feed the data into your Otis system so you can read it as we're moving."
[06:36] * Yanmei almost winced. "Thank you, Colonel."
[06:40] <Sept> "I see. No further questions."
[06:40] <Marianne> "Alright. James, engage the Otis systems and move the Evangelions to the embarkation point."-
[06:41] <Marianne> ["Yes, ma'am." The F-Type Evangelions were heavily trundled down onto the slow platform used by the embarkation cargo elevator. A minute later, they made their appearance on the surface of Paris-2.-
[06:42] <Marianne> "All units- full speed towards Algiers."
[06:44] <Yanmei> "Yes Ma'am." 04's AT Field briefly lit up, and it began to hover. "Keep your eyes peeled as you go, you too. They might surprise us on the way?" That hovering turned to full flight.
[06:45] <Sept> "Got it." Sera faced south and, with a final look over Paris-2, took off.
[06:46] <Aline> 00 trailed after them, Aline's eyes forward, as it launched onwards to finish the trio…
[06:48] <Marianne> [Far in the distance, gleaming like stars, the Evangelions of Germany, Boston and Japan split off at intense speeds, heading towards their own targets…-
[06:48] <Marianne> [Time passed.-
[06:50] <Marianne> [Algiers had been defended, for sure- but whatever serious weapons they possessed were little match for three heavily armored Evangelions. A series of Solaces- Aquas, mostly, and the odd Thruster- lay in pieces, scattered and broken. Parts of Algiers was in ruin or on fire, but the Evas were mostly unscathed.-
[06:52] <Marianne> "How are we faring, guys?"
[06:55] <Sept> "…fine. Algiers isn't."
[06:56] <Aline> 00 was perched atop a broken Aqua Solace, just finishing removing its Lance from the machine's skull. "It's almost too easy. They must be pulling back."
[06:58] <Yanmei> An armless Thruster hit the dirt in front of 04, and the constant chainsaw-like grinding noise that its prog sword had been giving off came to a gradual stop. "Hm. Makes one wonder what the point of even leaving these few behind was?"
[06:59] <Marianne> "They probably haven't had the time to pull them back."-
[07:01] <Marianne> "The German squadron's reached Sudan now, Boston's cutting its way towards the Congo and Tokyo's ready to hit Nigeria within an hour, so we can't be falling behind. Garrison units are en route to Algiers now- let's keep moving!"
[07:04] <Sept> "Right. They have to have left surveillance equipment here. They might be keeping all those people up to speed on our assault as we burn their homes."
[07:04] <Yanmei> "Ma'am." Yanmei tromped forward for a few paces, and then took to the air once more with her AT Field.
[07:06] * Aline frowned at Sera's comment, but looked off into the distance. Within seconds, 00 flew off in the very direction she was looking.
[07:19] <Marianne> [The Parisian squadron flashed across the sky. AT Fields allowed them to reach incredible speeds for something so large, and by flying high they could avoid any geographical problems. There were pauses, of course; it was mandated that they be allowed an hour to sleep or so before the final assault. But eventually, they came to their target at 8:40 AM.-
[07:20] <Marianne> [Nairobi-2 wasn't built to rebuild Nairobi-1, but to replace it, a fake city to cover the Synfront. It had hardly been used even before the war; now, the only residents were bureaucrats of the mostly ad-hoc LN and military personnel. It wasn't like Paris-2 at all; no skyscrapers graced its roofline, no river bisected it.-
[07:21] <Marianne> [It was a battlefield, however. Eight Solaces stood guard on the city outskirts.-
[07:21] <Marianne> "All units. Prepare for battle. Aline, I want you to handle the western group. Yanmei, take the north, and Sera, I want you to cut across and take out the eastern one before we all round out and take out the southern group."
[07:24] <Sept> "Got it. Good luck, everyone." EVA-01 touched down and immediately sprinted off toward his targets.
[07:26] * Aline nodded a few times as 00 touched down, though she still seemed to be checking a few things. "Right."
[07:30] <Yanmei> "Only eight of them, huh?" Yanmei was frowning. "Yes, all right."
[08:01] <Marianne> [The eight Solaces turned towards them, targeting computers fast at work. Sixteen Positron gatling cannons rose.]
[08:12] <Sept> As he approached, Sera stopped for a moment to take a shot at one of the Solaces to keep them off-balance enough to help him on his close-quarters assault later. The machine anticipated his attack well enough, however, shielding its more vulnerable parts with a metallic limb.
[08:13] * Aline would rush forward with the others, moving to occupy her foes a bit, weathering the storm with her AT Field and just plain dumb armor, before lancing out with a charged stab at one of the Solaces, though it was quickly batted away…
[08:15] * Yanmei got the same treatment, as she glided forward and raised her own bolter to snap off a shot - and a nasty retaliation as well! As the gunfire seared her limbs she yelped something angrily, the name "Otis" coming through even among the otherwise foreign words.
[08:43] <Marianne> [However, the Solaces were already gearing up for another volley at the hapless 04…]
[08:45] <Yanmei> Hapless indeed. "Fine." Back to French now, and charging ahead at her attackers with a swinging prog blade. "You'll pay for that!" One of them took a fall, almost completely limbless, and she glared at the second, ready for whatever it had up its sleeve.
[08:46] <Marianne> [It swung, ponderous fists heading towards her…]
[08:46] <Yanmei> The first bounced off an AT Field, and the second was turned aside by that same whirring sword!
[08:48] * Sept drew his sword, the blade starting its familiar whirring noise as he reached the Solaces, parrying and riposteing their attacks as they came.
[08:49] * Aline was meanwhile opening up with a volley of point-blank maser energy, ripping apart part of one of the two Solaces, with a grin on her face. And… maybe a bit more than that. "Thanks for the request, Otis."
[08:49] <Marianne> [And their attacks came heavily. Whilst the fists flew, a storm of Positron bolts hurtled towards his back!]
[08:52] <Marianne> [A second later, however, Yanmei would find the delimbed Solace firing those irreverent eye beams…]
[08:53] * Sept tried his best to ignore the fire. The armor would have to hold as he put these robots out of commission first. Swing after swing, limbs and parts flew off the thing, but it was still moving!
[08:55] <Yanmei> The eyebeams went wide, thankfully, leaving a strange, burnt smell behind. A distant low-sitting facility turned to fiery slag.
[09:12] <Marianne> [Sera would see his unarmoured foe back off, the other one staring at him intensely.]
[09:27] <Marianne> [Meanwhile, Aline was beset upon by a devastating Positron barrage, ripping through armor and burning holes into 00's head!]
[09:30] * Aline reeled from the barrage, and for a moment was dazzled, before being brought back into the fight. So… "Don't think I don't know that, Otis. As for you…" She scowled at the unfeeling machine. "EAT THIS!" And her own barrage of maser fire struck out at it!
[09:54] * Yanmei continued fencing. Thrusts here, parries there, at one point a second Thruster lost a single arm and she eyeballed it as it tried to lumber away and escape. "Nice try?" She buried her sword briefly through the chestplate of the legless Thruster that had been left behind, and charged after its partner.
[09:56] <Marianne> [A massive, searing shell of positron force burned past her as she went…]
[10:20] <Aline> And the last of Aline's?… Beheaded with a quick, searing spear charge, tearing the head into a burnt chunk of metal. "Damn, those things managed to get quite a lot of damage on me…"
[10:21] * Sept drove his sword through the unarmed Solace and threw it at a good speed into the further one's arm, giving him some space to take cover from the incoming fire from the unengaded enemies. Soon after, he ran after the sword, leaping at the Solace to tackle it to the ground with the sheer weight of an F-Type Evangelion, making short work of its head thereafter. "Phew… everyone okay?"
[10:21] <Marianne> [It tottered on its one leg and fell backward onto a block of apartments, turning them into flats.]
[10:23] * Yanmei hissed through her teeth, opened the little shutter on one of her wings to reveal her maser, and then returned fire. On both of them. When she stopped they were hole-riddled carcasses. As were a few than she hadn't even been aiming at… the ones to the far south. "Huh. All clear over here?"
[10:24] <Yanmei> ^that she
[10:24] <Marianne> [The battlefield was, once again, mostly a pile of smoking Solaces…-
[10:24] <Marianne> "Excellent work. Let's not waste time. Try to find an entry hatch. An embarkation point, or a launch bay."
[10:26] <Yanmei> "I don't like how far apart these are," Yanmei muttered, heading for the closest one. "But we can't go down one at a time to get to the same spot, can we?"
[10:26] <Marianne> "No. If they're like the ones at home, these probably all head to a different area…"-
[10:27] <Marianne> [There was a rumbling at Sera's feet.]
[10:27] <Sept> "Wait. I… think we have activity. Can you get here? We should stick together from here on, anyway…"
[10:28] * Aline was muttering a bit. "Ugh…" And as soon as Sera said that… "…R-right. Yanmei, what do you say?"
[10:29] <Yanmei> "They'll have us at too much of a disadvantage of we plit anyway." She was wandering towards Sept now, suspicion in her eyes. "What activity? Are we picking up anything, Colonel? Otis?"
[10:30] <Marianne> "We can't discern specifics, but seismatics suggests its a single unit…"
[10:32] * Aline was already setting down into a dash to get into range. "Noted. I'll support Sera from here…!"
[10:33] <Marianne> [A hill seemed to split in half.-
[10:33] <Marianne> [Standing on a cargo elevator was… A thing.-
[10:34] <Marianne> [It was an Evangelion of some kind, but only vaguely- its build was altogether more bestial, with long clawed arms, a wolf-like head, a hunch, malformed Wings… It resembled a feral werewolf.-
[10:34] <Marianne> ["I hope you aren't all planning on shooting me." Called a voice. Except it wasn't by comms, or by video. The words simply appeared in their minds.]
[10:34] * Marianne is now known as Nagisa‘Kaworu
[10:39] <Yanmei> "Nagisa…?" Yanmei’s voice had an odd lilt to it, as if she didn't know whether to be relieved or dismayed. The posture of her Evangelion, however, was still guarded. "What are you -doing-?"
[10:42] <Sept> "…you were the one who disappeared. Whose plan was that? Why would they want someone like you?"
[10:43] * Aline shook her head, her voice sounding grim. "He's… different. And so is this… thing. But…" The Lance of Tears wavered in 00's hands, reflecting Aline's feelings.
[10:45] <Nagisa‘Kaworu> "Fulfilling my Destiny." He said, friendly warmth in his voice. "I’m wanted because I'm the only one who can pilot this- the Dysangelion. And the plan was Azariah's. To bring me back, by any means necessary. Do not begrudge him. I would've come back willingly if I had the chance."-
[10:45] <Nagisa‘Kaworu> Now the videos opened. He was sitting in his plug, smiling, looking a little sickly. But there was a fire in his eyes. "I am nearly all used up, and a trick like telepathy is tiring. Forgive me."
[10:48] <Sept> "If you intend to stop us, you’ll find those tricks will save you no more than they have those who've come before you."
[10:49] * Nagisa‘Kaworu laughed. "Don’t worry yourself with the bravado, little Lilin. I will come to an end today, that I know."
[10:50] <Yanmei> "Dysan…?" Yanmei shook her head. "You're not making sense. That's not a full explanation! Why? Do you really want to do this?"
[10:51] <Nagisa‘Kaworu> "I’m sorry, Yanmei. Will you let me explain? I have gifts for all of you that must be appreciated before I burn away."
[10:51] * Aline frowned openly. "…We have to play this part, don't we. Do this little dance one last time? Iya… go on."
[10:52] * Sept just watched the figure warily, sword still drawn, whirring impatiently.
[10:52] * Yanmei didn't exactly answer. She waited, listening.
[10:53] <Nagisa‘Kaworu> "That’s right." Kaworu smiled fondly.-
[10:53] <Nagisa‘Kaworu> "Yanmei?"
[10:53] <Yanmei> "Yes?"
[10:54] <Nagisa`Kaworu> "I offer you the gift of the present." He smiled. "Atticus didn’t die all that time ago in Algeria. He was found, alive, and brought to the Synfront by Azariah."
[10:56] <Yanmei> The hands at her controls started. Yanmei's stare went positively blank, as if something inside her mind had clicked off. "What did you say?"
[10:57] <Nagisa‘Kaworu> "He’s alive."
[10:57] <Yanmei> "He's in the Synfront? Atticus is?"
[10:58] <Nagisa‘Kaworu> "No. He left about a minute ago."
[10:58] <Yanmei> "…"
[10:59] <Nagisa`Kaworu> "His new form is rather ugly, but it works." Kaworu chuckled sadly.
[11:01] <Yanmei> "New form… What did he do?" She seemed to regain some part of herself, anger slowly rising. "What did Azariah do to him?"
[11:02] <Nagisa`Kaworu> "You’re looking at him right now."
[11:02] * Aline shook her head, contributing unbidden. "…Of course…"
[11:04] <Sept> "…no respect…"
[11:05] * Yanmei stared. "That's…" She struggled with more words, her face pained. "I… see. Atticus is… Surely, they've places restraints on him. He can't be happy like that, can he?"
[11:05] <Yanmei> ^placed
[11:06] * Aline shook her head and frowned, but said nothing further.
[11:06] * Nagisa‘Kaworu chuckled. "Don’t worry. This is the -Dysangelion-. There are no restraints except for my own willpower. It's… Tiring." He smiled. "But Atticus volunteered. He did this of his own free will. Don't begrudge him his wish."-
[11:07] <Nagisa‘Kaworu> "… Yanmei. He never hated you for shooting him. Never. He forgives you."
[11:09] * Yanmei didn’t answer for a minute. She actually closed her eyes. "I don't deserve that forgiveness. Now I have attack him again, don't I?"
[11:09] <Nagisa‘Kaworu> "It’s what he wants." He smiles. "Sera de Pteres."
[11:10] * Sept waited. "What, Kaworu."
[11:19] <Nagisa‘Kaworu> "You more than deserve what I give you- the gift of the future." His smile grew, for a moment, serious. "You have to prepare. The final five of the Seven Daughters of Adam- the Eves, the Archangels- are awake and moving- and beyond that, other threats of which I know so little. You will have to protect Yanmei and Aline during these conflicts, but more than that, you have to protect yourself
[11:19] <Nagisa`Kaworu> as well. You are a wild card, the unforseen- nothing is certain around you, and that is your greatest advantage. When the time comes, the power to shape the outcome will be in the hands of all of you- but this will not come to pass unless you yourself live to see it. You are the small but critical keystone- so please, look after yourself. Heal. Strengthen. Explore -everything-. Break through
[11:19] <Nagisa`Kaworu> the loneliness of your people. Befriend. Assist. You’re nearly there, but you're not quite whole yet."
[11:22] <Sept> Something about his posture changed. "I know that. The concern isn't unappreciated."
[11:25] * Nagisa‘Kaworu chuckled. "Of course."-
[11:25] <Nagisa`Kaworu> "Aline."
[11:25] * Aline looked up suddenly. "…My turn, then."
[11:26] * Nagisa`Kaworu chuckled.-
[11:27] <Nagisa`Kaworu> "Aline, I can’t give you what you need. The gift of the Past. Sadly, it seems as though it's harder to read the past than it is the future." He sighed. "But first and foremost… It's time to do away with Kaworu Nagisa one last time."-
[11:28] * Nagisa‘Kaworu took a deep breath, and his Entry Plug… Grew misty and fuzzy. His skin became fluid, like quicksilver. He became a little shorter. His body grew feminine curves; barely perceived under the chestplate of his suit were breasts. His face changed.-
[11:28] <Nagisa`Kaworu> It became the face of Eugenia Ranvier.
[11:30] * Aline stared at the transformation, both her brows raising, and eyes widening. "…So that’s what you are. I… understand now." A firm nod. "At least you've given me some kind of past. I can't go without thanking you for that, at least."
[11:32] * Nagisa‘Kaworu chuckled. "Indeed. I was the Zeroth Child, Aline. The Entry Plug was based off of me; the Synchronisation system was based off of me; my legacy spreads throughout every Evangelion unit."-
[11:35] <Nagisa`Kaworu> "Aline." Danger crossed her face. "I was once the pilot of 00. I was the one who caused its berserk episode. I nearly started Third Impact." She frowned. "You’re searching for Lilith. But Lilith isn't somewhere, Aline. It's -someone-. I was the first, and they took it from me. I don't know where exactly it is now. But I can give you a lead. The best I know is that the Ayanami Project was
[11:35] <Nagisa‘Kaworu> designed to create the perfect recepticle."
[11:38] * Aline nodded grimly, thinking on that. "…I think I understand what you mean now. That…" She shook her head now, hard enough to make little waves in the LCL. "One last stupid question, and I’ll let you finish. …Yui told me there was a clone made, in part using my genetic material… Is that you, or is she lost to history?"
[11:43] <Nagisa‘Kaworu> "Lost to history. That clone really did only last for a month or so." Eugenia chuckled. "I was grown in a vat, the very first hybrid of Human and Angel. I was this shape eleven years ago."-
[11:44] <Nagisa`Kaworu> "… But the Angelic part of me was imperfect. I’ve known this for a long time. It's falling apart. I'm dying. I only have a month to live before it falls apart. Every time I use my AT Field, that moment draws closer and closer…"
[11:46] <Aline> "…Thanks for oblidging. I thought maybe you… well. Right. That puts a load off of me. So…" Aline bridged her hands, in a more nervous gesture, a finger or two sometimes flitting around. "I can see why you're willing to throw yourself into battle now. Other than Destiny…" Which was a word you could just tell she no longer liked pronouncing. "…There's Time."
[11:48] <Nagisa‘Kaworu> "Hahaha. Dying in battle isn’t my intent." He looked up at the roof, then back. "One last spread, full power- to heights I have not dared to touch for over a decade. My body will collapse, instantly- and my consciousness, and Atticus's, will become one, forever." He turned to Yanmei.-
[11:48] <Sept> And Time, right now, was what Sera worried about. But he kept his words to himself.
[11:48] <Nagisa‘Kaworu> "What was it that Consort Yu said? ’The Han army has conquered our land, we are surrounded by Chu songs. My lover's spirit has fled; Why then should I live?'"
[11:50] * Yanmei blinked in suprise. Moreso. Since the transformation, an expression of surprise hadn't really left her face. -
[11:52] <Yanmei> "Yeah, that's right," She murmured. "So this is what you want. A while back, you said that you were looking for something. If this isn't it, then I hope you found whatever it was."
[11:53] <Sept> "Live for life, Kaworu. No matter what those genes say, how much you feel you've failed as his Eve… It should never become an insurmountable obstacle to life. Such a thing -can't exist-."
[11:54] * Nagisa‘Kaworu laughed. A full and heavy laugh.-
[11:55] <Nagisa`Kaworu> "I did live for life, and I lived for love, and now I will die for life and love as well. But it’s alright." He beamed. "I was once a God, but I am human now. To be human is to accept destiny. But to be a God is to be free. Therefore, I choose this destiny of my own free will."-
[11:57] <Nagisa‘Kaworu> "I didn’t fail, Sera. It's not something you can judge from a mere eleven years. I will be his Eve, and he my Adam, forever. Even after the Earth, the Moon and even the Sun have disappeared, we will remain."-
[11:58] <Nagisa‘Kaworu> "Goodbye, Yanmei. Thank you for keeping me. Please wish Isaiah my best, alright?"-
[11:58] <Nagisa`Kaworu> "And please, don’t forget your promise to me."
[12:01] * Aline braced herself, more than anything. Shaking hands on her controls, deep liquid breaths… It was all she could do. Her face looked tense, but she had only a few words. "…For me, goodbye." Which seemed at odds with 00's readied Lance.
[12:01] <Nagisa‘Kaworu> "Goodbye, Aline. I still do love you, you know."
[12:02] <Sept> "…" Sera bowed out from the conversation, fixed his posture and gripped the sword tighter.
[12:03] <Yanmei> Yanmei was drifting to sobriety now, readying her own weapons. "I wish you two the best."
[12:03] * Nagisa`Kaworu smiled. "And I you."-
[12:03] * Nagisa`Kaworu took a deep breath. "We’re destined to lose, Atty. But… For now…"-
[12:04] <Nagisa‘Kaworu> "Let’s show the world the power of Eve and Adam, becoming one, becoming whole- becoming as close to what we call God as we can…"-
[12:05] <Nagisa‘Kaworu> The air around Eugenia shimmered, stiffened, and became opaque. It blocked out everything, even light.-
[12:05] <Nagisa`Kaworu> "Goodbye…"-
[12:05] <Nagisa`Kaworu> [The videos vanished.-
[12:06] <Nagisa`Kaworu> [Within Nagisa’s plug was nothing but LCL and an empty Plugsuit.-
[12:06] * Nagisa‘Kaworu is now known as Marianne
[12:06] <Marianne> [For a second, the Dysangelion sat still, like a puppet whose strings were cut…-
[12:07] <Marianne> [… Then those weak, malformed Wing Pylons -exploded-. The head pulled itself up, ripped open its jaws, and roared a truly deafening howl of absolute fury. Black wings burst from its back, half AT Field, half Angelic-
[12:08] <Marianne> [Above its head, a gleaming halo of light burst into existence.-
[12:08] <Marianne> "It’s gone berserk! All units, engage! James? James! Get a hold of yourself!"-
[12:08] <Marianne> ["I- Kaworu, I-"-
[12:08] <Marianne> "You can mourn later. For now…"
[12:17] <Marianne> [The Dysangelion roared- 01's AT Field vanished- and a claw hurled itself at 01's leg.]
[12:41] <Yanmei> "De Pteres!" A prismatic flicker at the muzzle of Yanmei's gun as she raised it, and popped off a quick shot. "Damn. At this range, we'll get creamed!"
[12:42] <Marianne> [It sidestepped Yanmei- and a split second later, a claw was hurling itself at 04, too.]
[12:47] <Yanmei> 04 spun aside deftly. "Fast!"
[12:47] <Sept> "It's an Angel in EVA form, we'll beat it like the others!" Sera took a step back and went at the Dysangelion with the sword that was made to cut through beings just like these.
[12:48] <Marianne> [The blade cut into the head.-
[12:48] <Marianne> [Blood spurted as the blade came free- and a light shimmered across its skin, rippling as the Dysangelion roared- the ripples flowing across its right arm…]
[12:59] * Aline suddenly rose comms. "I have a risky idea… if I spread in Anti-AT pattern, we'll be able to go right through its defenses! It's going to hurt, but…"
[12:59] <Marianne> "… Hmm. Hold on."-
[12:59] <Marianne> Tap tap tap. "I'm disseminating a battleplan through Otis."
[13:04] <Sept> "It seems like it could work. I'm ready."
[13:04] <Marianne> "Engage!"
[13:06] * Aline grinned. "Let's go!" …Then, with a deep breath, she expanded a shell of… something. An invisible shimmer hostile to the very AT Fields that bind life together. "Field's… ready. G-go!"
[13:11] * Yanmei had already moved next to the creature, sword held more defensively at first. At the signal, however, she launched forward, burying it into its neck. "Atticus…" She tightened her grip, and for a moment she didn't seem like she would move again. And then… the sword whirred to life again with that terrible chainsaw noise and waterfalls of gore.
[13:15] * ZackSleep is now known as ZackAFK
[13:15] <Marianne> [The body trembled, its roar cut off mid-scream. It staggered backwards, stump jerking left to right.-
[13:16] <Marianne> [Rips rent themselves across its body, and it fell backward- revealing, buried in its chest, its core.
[13:16] <Marianne> ]
[13:17] <Sept> "Yanmei!" It was hard to discern what had happened, at first. Sera made to hurry towards her, but… "Did you..?"
[13:18] * Aline stared at the results, with her mouth wide. "I think…?"
[13:19] * Yanmei stared down at the core. "Not quite," she said quietly. They could end it with this. But… it hurt! He was still inside there, and so was Nagisa! Her hands shook at the controls. -
[13:22] <Yanmei> But this was what they wanted. They wouldn't hate her for it. This was part of their plan. Slowly, 04 drew its sword back one last time. A long, silent pause… and then it thrust forward, cracking past the smooth, red, shiny surface in a blindingly fast stroke.
[13:23] <Marianne> [It sparked. it cracked.-
[13:23] <Marianne> [It split in half, a wave of energy washing out across Nairobi-2, vaporising buildings and metal. It didn't harm the Evangelions.-
[13:25] <Marianne> [The energy burned, and burned, spiralling into a massive lance of energy that shot far into the atmosphere. The sheer energy sent sensors and comms across the world into a mad scramble. It crested the light of the Earth…-
[13:25] <Marianne> [And vanished into the beyond, where only God knows what lies.]
[13:35] <Sept> "…good work, Yanmei." Came the voice after a heavy silence as the static slowly faded.
[13:36] * Aline stared again, looking down, then up. Silently, 00's field returned to normal, and silently, Aline gazed out into nowhere as her video link returned.
[13:38] <Yanmei> There was silence from 04's entry plug during the explosion and afterward. Zhang Yanmei just stared at the charred remains. Her mouth wavered slightly as though it might open, and her eyelids blinked rapidly.
[13:39] <Marianne> [Shadows passed overhead.-
[13:39] <Marianne> [Wings of fighter jets screamed across the sky, followed by VTOLs. And above them-
[13:40] <Marianne> [Twelve shapes, the Mass Production Evangelions, flying information, breaking off into a circle, EVA-09 in the lead. They circled for a few seconds, then, in single file, started to head towards the ground.-
[13:42] <Marianne> [Other Evangelions were heading towards them as well. EVA-03 and 05 from the west; from the north, EVA-02; and from the south, EVA-08.-
[13:43] <Marianne> [Some of them bore battle damage- but nothing serious. They landed, congregating around the Parisian pilots.-
[13:43] <Marianne> ["Hmph. You're all alive, I see. I guess the enemy's forces must've been weaker than expected~" Said Asuka gleefully.]
[13:45] <Sept> "We can share those stories later, Asuka. There's work to do."
[13:45] * Aline just… stared out, a mild frown forming on her face. "…Right. We still need to end this."
[13:46] <Yanmei> "…" Yanmei's face settled on one expression now at that - grim one. "Colonel? What's the plan for descending?"
[13:47] <Yanmei> ^a grim one
[13:50] <Marianne> "We're dividing into four groups, and storming each embarkation point. 05 and 08 are assigned to the east, with the Parisian units. 02 and 03 are assigned to the north, with 09, 10 and 11. 12 through to 15 take the west, and the others take the south."
[13:53] <Sept> "Got it. Just tell us when everyone's ready."
[13:53] <Yanmei> "Understood." Yanmei eyed their designated point. "Let's get into place, then? Glad to be doing this in big groups."
[13:56] * Aline finally broke her weird stare-athon with an open smile. "Right!" …and she waited nearby as well…
[13:59] <Marianne> [They organised themselves. Weapons were readied. Ammo was loaded. AT Fields were screened.-
[14:00] <Marianne> [A voice. That of Commander Ikari's…-
[14:00] <Marianne> ["Go."]
[14:03] <Sept> "I'll take point."-
[14:05] <Sept> EVA-01 dropped in, metal screeching as it slowed its descent enough to make it to the bottom unharmed. "Okay, get in."
[14:05] <Yanmei> "Commencing our descent. Brace yourselves." Yanmei stepped toward the shaft, her meager AT Field flickering to life again. "Ikari Shinji, please bring up the rear." -
[14:05] <Marianne> [Sera's words were almost drowned out by a -wall- of positron bolts.-
[14:06] <Marianne> [The Synfront interior was a grid of roads, separated by massive 200-metre tall buildings, made of thick and sturdy materials. In the very centre stood a pyramid. 20-metre tall walls barricaded this central area off from attack.-
[14:07] <Marianne> [Hiding behind buildings, behind walls, were a veritable -army- of Thruster Solaces- easily numbering within the 40s…]
[14:09] * Aline was the last of the Parisians to move in, hovering down carefully…
[14:11] * Sept hid behind the remnants of his shield, pushing through to the nearest piece of cover. "Move up, fast!"
[14:15] * Yanmei did the same, scuttling to the side as positron shots rained on her. "Ugh… Move immediately to the cover on the sides as you enter. We'll move as a group once we're all in."
[14:16] <Marianne> [Shinji came up the rear, running over to a wall behind Aline.-
[14:17] <Marianne> [The other squadrons started to arrive, now- ones with heavy ordinance. The sound of exploding rocket launchers and positron cannons joined the fray.]
[14:19] <Aline> 00 had aerial-tumbled behind cover, indeed, and now Aline was here-and-there peeking at the scene of current carnage. "Ready?…"
[14:20] <Yanmei> "Well, they're having fun?" Yanmei muttered. "Hold on. Confirming something with the AI."
[14:22] <Yanmei> -"…right. Suggested a Synchronized AT Field Barrier. Blanc, how do you like those chances?"
[14:24] * Aline grinned. "I don't know a weapon of man that could break that if we all threw in our lots!"
[14:25] <Aline> A pause. "…That a solace can wield anyway."
[14:26] * Yanmei snickered. "Good. We'll give it a shot! All we have to do is focus on you when you tell us to, right?"
[14:26] * Sept shook off the bits of his shield, the positron generator sparking and dying. He took out a positron rifle in a now-free hand. "Sounds good. And they won't be able to hit us if they don't see us, on top of that. I can cover our advance with smoke."
[14:27] <Marianne> [Above them, unheeded by enemy or ally, a large trooper VTOL flew heading for the central pyramid…]
[14:29] * Aline has left #nervfrance
[14:29] * Aline has joined #nervfrance
[14:30] * Aline clapped her hands together, still smiling. "Alright then! All four of you, focus your fields onto me! Let's get this going~"
[14:32] <Yanmei> "Show offs," Yanmei glanced at the free-flying VTOL with a mild frown. "De Pteres, good idea on the smoke. And~ Let's get started?" She shut her eyes and did just as asked, concentrating.
[14:34] <Sept> "…yes, Aline." Sera followed suit, shutting out the din of the battle, as well as his nerves, as best he could.
[14:37] * Aline took her own heavy breath, and began working with what she had. By the time all was said and done? There was a truly massive disc of AT energy in front of 00, facing the center of the base. So massive, in fact, that it's entirely possible that it touched the walls and ceilings of the Synfront.
[14:38] <Marianne> "Advance!"-
[14:38] <Marianne> ["Colonel, strike team has entered the pyramid!"-
[14:39] <Marianne> [Before long, however, Aline's AT Field wasn't alone. Another sprang up on the other side of the Synfront… And another, to the south. And one to the north. Four walls, all overlapping, slowly drawing together like a net…-
[14:40] <Marianne> [No matter how strong the regiments of Thrusters within, they were no match for so many Evangelions.]
[14:43] <Yanmei> "Perfect." Yanmei sighed with relief. "This is much less messy. How long do you think we can hold them like this?"
[14:45] * Aline slowly, very slowly advanced, sometimes making potshots with her weapons. "Nearly indefinitely. It'd take something like the Doomsday Cannon to breach a combined wall of this size, and the Synfront's geometry makes the trap possible."
[14:46] <Sept> "Of course. That's what we can do together. More than any single unit, no matter how many souls of man and Angel you use to create it. And we won't need long, anyway, will we? Let's split up and take two parallel corridors, otherwise it'll get too crowded. Everyone ready?"
[14:49] <Yanmei> "Hold on. If we're only dealing with unmanned units, why not just crush them by moving the barriers in even more? Like a giant compactor?"
[14:50] <Aline> "The pyramid in the center. We have men in there."
[14:51] <Yanmei> "Oh, yeah. That's true, isn't it?" Yanmei shifted her gun. "In that case, yes, let's advance."
[14:54] <Marianne> [The Thrusters continued to fire, bolts pelting harmlessly into the field…-
[14:55] <Marianne> [Aline's field- their field- was impressive. Nevertheless, it wasn't powerful enough to quite reach the roof- above, jets screaming, came a squadron of Valkyries, quark bolts firing at Aline- threatening to undo the Field and subject them all to a wave of positron energy.]
[14:58] <Sept> "Aline, get back! Take it down!" Sera moved up by 00, trying to at least distract them enough with positron fire for the others to get a shot in.
[14:59] * Aline looked up suddenly, and with a seemingly idle move, she flicked on her integrated maser, sending a stream of shots soaring upwards, actually holding sustained fire for a little while!
[15:00] * Yanmei emptied as many maser shots into the overhead jets as she could, and a few Bolter ones for good measure.
[15:03] <Yanmei> ^overhead Valkyries
[15:03] <Marianne> [A bolt round caught a Valkyrie's jet engine, sending it screaming to the ground. Next to it, mas shots ripped through the chassis of another.-
[15:04] <Marianne> [But a series of quark bolts hit 00, causing an arm to jerk back with electricity- the AT Field flickered…-
[15:05] <Marianne> [And in the moment of weakness, a Cannon strike caught 05 square in the chest, smashing it to the ground.]
[15:08] <Sept> "Stay focused!" Sera tried to steady Aline's unit, as if it would help. "Everyone alright?"
[15:08] <Marianne> [EVA-05 twitched, sparking. It got to its feet and rushed into cover. "U-ugh… I-I'm ok."]
[15:11] * Aline cried out suddenly. "Sh-Shinji!… Ah. …Aaaaaah!" She unloaded even more, angrily emptying shots into the flying Solaces with eyes of vengeance.
[15:14] <Yanmei> "This is bad." Yanmei muttered, sending out even more shots. "We can't keep this up after all…"
[15:14] <Sept> "They're focusing on us! If we split up and move out now, we can join up with the others while avoiding fire from the air!"
[15:15] <Marianne> [A field- the southern field- flickered, and died.-
[15:15] <Marianne> [A second later, so did the western field.]
[15:16] * Aline grumbled a bit. "We might have to just break it off, they can get around it… All in favor?" She was, while grumbly still, a bit desperate looking.
[15:18] <Sept> "Mmh… Fine. Just stay safe, everyone. Get ready to move!"
[15:20] <Yanmei> "Let's do it. The other teams have all probably gotten the same idea too?" Yanmei nodded. "Blank, Ikari, watch each others backs. De Pteres, we'll be doing the same."
[15:21] <Yanmei> ^Blanc
[15:24] <Marianne> ["Colonel! Something's happening in the Pyrami-"-
[15:24] <Marianne> ["I-i-"-
[15:24] <Marianne> [… Communications ceased. They were cut off.-
[15:24] <Marianne> [Four glowing wings surrounded the Pyramid.]
[15:25] <Sept> "Right. On my mark. 3… 2…" 01 leaned around the corner, a cylinder firing out from below its rifle, clattering loudly down the corridor, even amongst the gunfire. It slid to a halt, and exploded into a cloud of smoke the Evangelions' individual sensors had great difficulty seeing through. "NOW - GO!"
[15:27] * Aline nodded, suddenly becoming very serious. "On my way, keep close, Shinji!" …And 00 barrelled forwards, as everyone's AT Fields returned to themselves, and her own reinstated itself.
[15:28] <Marianne> [Shinji ran after her, his arms up in a defensive stance.]
[15:30] * Yanmei charged herself, half blind and ready to fire at anything that even so much as vaguely resembled the lumbering Thrusters or the sleek flying Valkyries. A glance where she had seen the wings, but the smoke obscured it. This was fine for now.
[15:31] <Marianne> [A hulking Thruster emerged out of the gloom and haze, lifting a buzzing gun towards her…]
[15:33] * Yanmei fired on it with the bolter, almost as an automatic response.
[15:35] <Marianne> [An arm shuddered, but it didn't stop. With vigor, it grabbed the end of her Bolter and -tugged-.]
[15:36] * Sept whirled around as he heard the commotion and slashed at the Thruster's arm joints. "We don't have… time…" he muttered through gritted teeth.
[15:44] <Marianne> [The arm buckled beneath the lethal blade- now missing an arm, it turned and hurled a punch at 01, aiming for the jaw.]
[15:46] * Sept didn't have the balance to dodge it, hoping he could deflect enough of the force with his field to get in for a counterattack.
[15:46] <Aline> A whistling sound, and a spear suddenly whirled through the air, jabbing first into, then out of the Thruster, clanging back into 00's grip. "Come on…!"
[15:46] <Marianne> [Saved from a punch by a timely throw, the Thruster clanked as systems shut down- then it folded in on itself, eyes fading.]
[15:48] <Marianne> [… And EVA-01 clenched, AT Field energy wrapping around it. With absolute strength, it was lifted into the air…]
[15:48] <Sept> "Hahh… hah… Keep moving. We have to hurry." And Sera sprinted ahead, into the smoke and toward the barricades, sword and rifle in hand.
[15:50] <Marianne> [A voice broke through the comm haze. "This is Commander Ikari. All units move to neutralise regardless of surroundings. This is an -order-."]
[15:52] * Aline looked around out of concern, but she didn't need to be told twice, seeing what it was doing to 01! "You heard him. We'll stand a better chance against the Solaces than we will against that Angel!" She wasn't sure what it was, really, but that was what she'd run with. And so 00 moved forward, spreading its wings to bend its AT Field against the offending one!
[15:54] <Sept> "Wha- ugh, letgo..!" 01 struggled uselessly against the hold, trying to locate and neutralise the source of the field. "It… take care of the Solaces first! C'lear a way to the pyramid!"
[16:00] <Yanmei> Yanmei retrieved her Bolter, squinting over at the EVA-like figures around… just in time to see 01's ascent. She stared, seeing but not believing, and half focused on something else completely. She gripped her head, breathing hard… and then a positron shot sailed past her head, breaking her concentration. -
[16:03] <Yanmei> "For fuck's sake!" her maser blazed in return. "Kill it. Got to… Kill.. Neut…" She skimmed around, found the giant glowing wings again, and leaped at it with all of her strength, her own AT-Field flickering around her as an aid.
[16:11] <Marianne> [… And EVA-01's bonds vanish.]
[16:13] * Aline smiled, and kept holding onto her own neutralization. "There we go, there we go! It shouldn't be but a little more!"
[16:16] * Yanmei in the meantime, had no choice but to land somewhere amid the thickest of the Solace mob. She grit her teeth and focused, trying to help however she could, all the while slamming her progsword into whatever enemies were nearest enough to reach.
[16:16] <Marianne> [Those massive wings flickered. She was eye-level with the drama occuring within the Pyramid's sanctum. She could see Azariah, reaching out- the Ayanamis- Raphael, Gendo…-
[16:17] <Marianne> [Around her, Solaces swarmed, fists and bolts slamming at her. Some fell. Many did not.]
[16:17] <Sept> 01 slammed into the ground as the support was suddenly gone. For a moment, it simply writhed as Sera tried to get his bearings. Then, with a certain confidence, it pushed itself off the ground and began running toward the pyramid again.
[16:20] <Marianne> [He was getting closer. Within he could see 04 fighting amidst a swarm of Thrusters and Dreadnoughts.]
[16:25] <Aline> 00 was, for its own sake, still mired in the battle, dodging around as it marched closer, flanked still by 05… Positron bursts, maser beams, and spearstrikes would still rain out from it ever so often…
[16:25] <Sept> "Yanmei!" Sera ran in and tackled a Solace -hard-, driving his sword into it on the way.
[16:27] <Yanmei> 04 was still fighting, at least, no matter how badly it was getting slammed. The yell made Yanmei take a sharp pause in the grunts of pain and frustration she was making. "De Pteres!" She lopped an arm off one of her attackers.
[16:28] <Marianne> [And four pairs of arms grabbed her, pulling her down…]
[16:29] <Yanmei> "No! Damn it!"
[16:30] <Sept> And the last of 01's AT field flickered as he joined his own to the others' effort. Sera clawed, and kicked and shot his way through the robots as fast as he could, but…
[16:33] <Aline> Finally, 00 was beginning to reach the cloud of Solaces. Ammo drained, AT Field committed… All she could do was keep stabbing. And stabbing. The sound of metal crunching could be heard amidst the shambling mass, no doubt joined by her lover's own wicked blade. Singing in gruesome, ear-shattering harmony.
[16:33] <Marianne> [Claws singing, Shinji did indeed join her, striking at blinding speed…-
[16:34] <Marianne> [Two more swords joined the Fray. EVA-02, head and arms damaged, but swords shining as their blades whirred, cut into the horde…]
[16:38] <Marianne> [Wielded with both hands, even though one was hanging almost-uselessly, EVA-03 charged into the mass with wide, careless swings…-
[16:39] <Marianne> [And suddenly, Yanmei could see something besides machines…-
[16:39] <Marianne> [As a pair of unnaturally sharp claws attached to unnaturally long arms parted the mass with rough anger. EVA-08, perched on a rooftop, lunged once more, crushing a Dreadnought.]
[16:41] * Aline waved on the video feed, smiling widely. "There we are~ Let's finish this, eh?"
[16:44] <Sept> "Y-yes… Let's." His voice was low, even as he was trying to hack through a particularly tenaciously parrying Thruster.
[16:46] * Yanmei was missing her Bolter again. But, she could see Isaiah, suddenly and unexpectedly, and with brand new determination, she opened 04's jaws and sank it into the crunchy metal of one of the Solaces still clinging to her.
[16:47] <Marianne> [The Solace twitched and staggered for a second, before going limp.-
[16:48] <Marianne> [The horde -finally- seemed to be thinning. At least, there was more colour than boltmetal greay.-
[16:48] <Marianne> "Keep going! We're nearly there!" Shouted Marianne over the restored comms.
[16:49] * Aline nodded firmly, starting to barrel through the hordes with a number of stabs yet again. "Right! This is it, this is it!"
[16:51] * Sept just kept gritting his teeth, trying to regain his footing after staggering back from a blow that came in the moment it took him to blink.
[16:52] <Yanmei> More Maser bolts from 04. Shoot, shoot, stab, stab… she was working her back up into a frantic rhythm again.
[16:55] <Marianne> [The AT shockwave shook the entire Synfront.-
[16:55] <Marianne> [As Azariah died- and with it, the weakened Ramliel- the immense AT Field, suppressed by the Neutralisation, collapsed, then expanded in a shockwave similar to that of an exploding core.-
[16:56] <Marianne> [It crushed some buildings, and wiped away nearly all of the Solaces- as Azariah died, his legacy perished with him.-
[16:56] <Marianne> [The Evangelions stood, AT Fields shrouding them- safe.]

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