Though Lovers Shall Be Lost Love Shall Not And Death Shall H

[20:16] <Marianne> [[Session 37: NEON GENESIS EVANGELION. Date: 6th January, 2017. Episode Title: Though lovers shall be lost love shall not; And death shall have no dominion.-
[20:18] <Marianne> [A snowy wintry day in Paris-2- a city still caught up in a wave of immigration. Every day that passed saw its population swell, recently growing to a population of 650,000. Today, many of them were out in the streets, playing in the snow with children, or having a day out with friends; others more were inside, enjoying the cozy warmth.-
[20:19] <Marianne> [And today, for many, many people, it would be their first experience of an Angel attack.-
[20:19] <Marianne> [An alarm sounded throughout the streets at 11 AM. "All civilians, please proceed to the nearest shelter. This is not a drill. I repeat…"-
[20:19] <Marianne> [… And for the pilots, their phones would start to ring.]
[20:23] * Aline found herself grabbing the phone with an instinctive, powerful snatch from where she sat, pulling the thing open with hardly even a smidge of hestitation. "It's time, isn't it." Said not out of uncertainty, but quite the opposite.
[20:24] * Sept turned away from the window and stared ponderously at the phone. He let it ring several times, before finally getting up and answering. "Hello."
[20:25] * Yanmei was quick on her feet. Baby and company were being seen off with emergency bags, the meal they had been enjoying together still cooling on the kitchen table. She flipped her phone open with one hand, grabbing her own coat with another. "On the way."
[20:29] <Marianne> [They'd get their answers- yes, an Angel was on the way, and yes, it was time to go.-
[20:30] <Marianne> On the main bridge of the command centre, there used to be a space where Dorian used to park his chair. Someone had installed a comfortable-looking high-backed chair there as well, to give the Colonel what she needed during a tense situation. Marianne wasn't using it. She was standing behind it, her hand on the headrest.-
[20:31] <Marianne> She took a deep breath and waited for the pilots.
[20:34] * Aline arrived swiftly, as swiftly as she could, even making it a point to use her little moped to make it faster than on foot. By now, the deep crimson thing was probably recognizable, but that didn't matter now. It was stowed in a nook in the command center as the girl arrived. "Here."
[20:34] * Yanmei breezed in, pleasant smile on her face, nods and hellos as abundant as the usual entrance called for. Her pace was brisk, confident, and she came to a halt in front of Marianne. "What do we have on our hands this time?"
[20:35] * Sept …walked in, too, waving his hellos and letting the others ask the questions.
[20:37] * Marianne nodded to the three fo them. "Good to see you all." She looked back up at the main screen.-
[20:38] <Marianne> [Object: Seventeenth Angel. CODENAME: ELEMIAH.-
[20:39] <Marianne> [It was twisted and dead-looking, its body emaciated in some areas and bulging in others. Bones protruded from its torso, barely covered in thin flesh.-
[20:40] <Marianne> "It's a teleporter. It first appeared over Leningrad, then Berlin, and now finally here."
[20:43] <Yanmei> "No one engaged it in Russia? Or Germany?" Disgusting. A frown was taking shape.
[20:44] <Marianne> "This all happened within the last three minutes. They didn't have time to sortie."
[20:45] <Sept> "It's staying here, then..?"
[20:45] * Aline shook her head. "Three Evangelions rather than one. And… Ah. That too." But her face lowered. "Nonetheless, it's sure to have realized its found its mark now."
[20:46] <Marianne> "For now. But we haven't time to waste." Marianne turned towards the pilots. "For now, we sortie. You all know what to do. Let's get to it."
[20:48] * Aline didn't need to be told twice, and was already off to get suited up…!
[20:50] <Yanmei> "Yes, Colonel." Yanmei turned to go.
[20:52] <Sept> "Yes," Sera agreed, and headed off as well.
[20:58] <Marianne> [And thus before long they would enter their Evangelions- EVA-04 was outfitted with the new F-Type equipment, making it look bulkier and more menacing than ever before.-
[20:59] <Marianne> [LCL was pumped into entry plugs, and they were launched- up into a snowy Paris-2, the buildings long since recessed.]
[21:01] <Marianne> [The Angel was hovering where it was, perched barely above the Louvre, its eyes closed.]
[21:06] * Yanmei gazed down at the bulky armor surrounding her. Since entering the plug, her face had taken something of a petulant quality. "Let's try to cripple it's AT Field before it moves, shall we?" And she moved forward to do just that. "Keep your guard up, you two!"
[21:07] <Marianne> "Sophie, I want you to reduce Blanc's synch ratio. It's far too high for comfort."-
[21:07] <Marianne> ["Yes, ma'am! Hold on, Leenie…!"]
[21:08] * Aline slowly nodded, before feeling /quite/ dizzy. "…Ugwa, right…! Too long, dangerous."
[21:11] <Sept> "I will try to keep it away from you. Please use whatever time I can buy us to prepare."
[21:12] <Marianne> [Elemiah's eyes remained shut as it lifted a hand towards EVA-01, a storm of small black streaks shooting from its fingertips towards it.-
[21:13] <Marianne> [Regardless of whether they hit or not, Elemiah tucked itself into a ball a second later- and vanished.-
[21:13] <Marianne> "Huh? It's gone? Quick! Get me a reading! Where did it go?"-
[21:13] <Marianne> ["We… We don't know! We can't find it -anywhere-!"]
[21:14] * Sept dove under the barrage, looking around when he failed to find the Angel again upon getting up. "I… think we should establish live communication with the other bases, Marianne."
[21:14] * Aline stared blankly. "…Gwuh. Check… I don't know. Check orbit, check the goddamn moon, I don't know!" She seemed pretty taken aback at the sudden escape. Don't they usually stand and fight?
[21:16] <Yanmei> "Huh. You're suggesting that it just moved on, then?" Yanmei was skeptical, leaning forward in her seat a little and peering around as if it might reappear any moment.
[21:17] * Zack is now known as ZackSleep
[21:19] <Marianne> "We'll get on that. This is odd…"-
[21:19] <Marianne> [Time passed. The high midday sun burned down into the west, winter stealing the light from the city all too early.-
[21:20] <Marianne> "Still no sign…" It had been five hours, and the city remained on high alert.
[21:29] <Marianne> "How's everyone doing? I know it's been a long wait, but please hang in there."
[21:30] * Aline sighed a bit. "At least I had breakfast… This is seriously odd, though. But I won't go on about it again." …She had probably mentioned how strange it was, when asked, more than a few times.
[21:30] * Yanmei had alternated between a watchful vigil, and brief, scattered amicable conversations with a various technicians via comm system during this time. It was a way to stave off boredom, restlessness and claustrophobia, anyway, although it didn't work perfectly. She was now, in fact, squirming around in her chair. "Everything's fine over here."
[21:31] * Sept was sitting/floating in his plug, quite relaxed. He'd been very quiet for the whole time, not unexpectedly. "I am alright, Marianne."
[21:42] <Marianne> "Alright, good. Hopefully something will-"-
[21:43] <Marianne> [At that second, there was an AT distortion in the air behind EVA-04. Elemiah returned, emerging from a tucked-in position, standing erect, eyes still closed. Black tendrils snaked from its body out towards the Evangelion, ripping through its right leg as though it were paper.-
[21:43] <Marianne> "It's reappeared! Yanmei! Look out-!"
[21:45] <Yanmei> "Eh-" Her startled exclamation turned into a startled yelp of pain! "Y-you little!" She grit her teeth, trying to shake off the frenzy that left her suddenly clammy.
[21:46] <Marianne> [The tendrils didn't stop, however, suddenly pouring over EVA-04's body, penetrating the armor, veiny bulges rippling across the surface. The armor started to burst off…-
[21:46] <Marianne> [… And the flesh beneath was black and oily. It spread, covering EVA-04 entirely…-
[21:47] <Marianne> [… And it liquefied, completely, before the tendrils returned to Elemiah's body. EVA-04 was gone.-
[21:47] <Marianne> [A second later, so was Elemiah.]
[21:48] * Aline stared again, barely even having time to level her rifle on what was now empty space, before shaking her head. "W-wh-wha."
[21:48] * Sept was already strides closer to Yanmei, but… there was no way he could've made it in time. "Yanmei," he said.
[21:48] <Marianne> "Damnit! Yanmei!" Marianne's voice was taut with panic. "YANMEI! Gosselin, I want a location, now!"-
[21:49] <Marianne> ["We… W-Wait, yes, there it is. We've found it."-
[21:49] <Marianne> "Where?!"-
[21:49] <Marianne> ["S-Southern Libya. 25 kilometres south of the front line."-
[21:49] <Marianne> "… Damnit! That's too close. Way too close to the Libs…"
[21:53] <Sept> "That means nothing, Marianne. Aline, we have to go."
[21:55] * Aline raised a hand shakily. "And and leave Paris-2 unguarded? Sera, you should know by now what happens if an Angel takes the city!"
[21:56] <Sept> "Yanmei is equally important. We need both. Is there nothing you can do to speed up passage between here and there?"
[21:56] <Marianne> "That's enough."-
[21:57] <Marianne> "Aline, Sera, pursue -now-. Use your AT flight. I'll handle defense of Paris-2. Gosselin, get Eden Base on the line. Tell Unit 07 to rendezvous with the other Evangelions at the following coordinates."-
[21:57] <Marianne> ["Yes, ma'am!"]
[22:00] <Sept> "Very well, Marianne. Let's go, Aline."
[22:01] * Aline nodded swiftly. "…Sorry. Then let's go." Flapping on gossamer wings, 00 basically stuck a proverbial middle finger at the whole business of burning AT power in order to fly, instead just reaching cruising altitude, and simply waiting for 01 to follow.
[22:03] * Sept did, obediently… though now insisting on sticking maybe a bit -too- close to his pilot colleague.
[22:04] <Marianne> [They would soon be followed by a high-speed command aircraft.-
[22:05] <Marianne> [The Evas sped across France and the sea, soon entering the dry and baked land of Algeria. Cutting quickly past the Atlas mountains and heading southeast into Libya, they would eventually find what they were looking for…-
[22:06] <Marianne> [EVA-07 sat on a hill, its own, longer glowing wings folded against its back. A bolter sat on the ground next to it, one leg tucked against its chest. In the distance, hovering above the sands, was Elemiah.-
[22:07] <Marianne> ["You alright, Isabelle?"-
[22:07] <Marianne> ["Yes. Better that we can finally begin."]
[22:13] * Sept , piloting the only wingless Evangelion present, landed with something of a lack of grace beside 07. "Isabelle. We'll have to retrieve Yanmei first, if at all possible."
[22:14] <Marianne> [Isabelle didn't respond. She was muttering something under her breath.]
[22:15] * Sept began advancing toward the Angel. "Isabelle. Did you hear me?"
[22:17] * Aline landed on the other side of where Sera did, while he was moving forward. 00 /naturally/ tried to do this with a bit more grace than its brusque cousins, though. "Best just keep your eyes forward."
[22:19] <Marianne> ["I alone am blessed of the tree of knowledge, the wood of which we shall fashion the spear of godslaying, the fruit of which we shall use to deny the power of the Almighty." Muttered Isabelle.]
[22:28] <Marianne> [Elemiah opened its eyes.-
[22:28] <Marianne> [Behind it, a ripple in space appeared, ripping itself open seemingly out of nowhere. It lifted a hand, pointed it at Sera-
[22:28] <Marianne> [And a storm of energy bolts hurled their way out of the portal, impaling themselves on EVA-01 mercilessly.]
[22:42] * Sept faltered, his momentum more than countered by the barrage, but… he was up soon enough, lurching back into motion. "Hurry. Both of you."
[22:48] <Marianne> "Move out! Now! Send them manoeuvre coordinates! 00 and 07, move into the flanks!"
[22:50] <Sept> "I'll be fine. It can't stop me."
[22:53] * Aline rushed forwards, 00 taking a measured ultra-low-altitude aerial dash, barely even moving the sand below but for a tiny furrow from sheer air displacement, before skidding to a gentle halt… to give Aline enough time to raise a wave of neutralizing force, broadcast through 00's wings. "Got it. Tandem neutralization is a go!"
[22:55] <Marianne> [EVA-07 did much the same, although its neutralisation had a significant boost of -oomph- to it- enough to cause Elemiah's attention to shift.]
[23:34] <Marianne> [The Angel's shimmering portal behind it did not vanish, however. It unleashed another volley of searing energy blasts at EVA-01!]
[23:39] * Sept dodged what he could - which really wasn't much - but still stood after the dust cleared. 01 was badly singed and rent in parts, but was still advancing. Sera raised his knife, planning to hurt the Angel right back.
[23:40] * Aline had fired her own barrage of shots, but they did comparatively precious little damage…
[23:42] <Marianne> [Whilst a bark of bolter fire saw the Angel's body blister with wounds.-
[23:43] <Marianne> [Elemiah was heavily injured- that was obvious. It crouched, then, using some esoteric power, took to the sky, hurling itself away to safety and out of the reach of AT neutralisation.]
[23:52] * Sept swiped at the air, but hit nothing as the Angel made its way out of his reach. "Move fast. We can't let it keep that distance."
[23:56] <Marianne> [The Angel quickly landed some distance away, holding its hands together. A sphere of rainbow energy rippled in its hands, forming into a sword-shaped emission of AT Energy, which it hurled straight at EVA-01's body…]
[00:08] * Sept flailed around as the magnetic field simultaneously disabled most of the sensors on 01 - any attempts at communication only came through to the others as bursts of crackling static. Still, he maintained his sense of direction, kept his arms in front of his head and vital organs. He was rewarded by having 01's hand be cut roughly from the wrist down to the elbow as further smatterings
[00:08] * Sept of LCL wet the desert. The static noise from 01 continued.
[00:08] <Marianne> "Damnit, damnit. Everyone, focus your fire on that Angel! Give Sera covering fire! Aline, move in and engage!"
[00:11] * Aline gritted her teeth, but barked out a reply, as she floated forward suddenly, taking a pirouetting leap… then snapping off a powerful shot that lucked into a high surge of energy. "With pleasure!"
[00:30] <Sept> "If you can h-hear me, I'll hold it off for a bit longer. Please fi… finish it off." 01 scrambled up from the ground, kicking itself off the ground as if it was underwater. With a notable aforementioned lack of grace, it landed closer to the Angel, plowing a trench into the sand as its AT field flickered away, knife-hand outstretched, trying to crawl the last meters between them.
[00:51] <Marianne> [Elemiah stared down at him. It crouched down, stared him in the eye.-
[00:51] <Marianne> [With precision, it picked up his Prog Knife, vanishing it into a portal. Then, it grabbed EVA-01 up by the throat…-
[00:51] <Marianne> [And -hurled- it across the sands, vanishing into the distance.-
[00:52] <Marianne> [The Evangelion flailed as it flew, arm out, but the arm practically vaporised at the sheer speed, a tidal wave of sand and dust blasting out from its impact.-
[00:53] <Marianne> [The body burned away, the impact essentially compacting the entry plug in on itself. The last thing Sera would see would be a shard of steel hurtling towards him…-
[00:53] <Marianne> ["E-EVA-01 down! Vital signs from de Pteres gone!"-
[00:54] <Marianne> [The Angel then hurled itself into the air, dropping an EM burst upon EVA-07, which hit flawlessly- before landing in front of it.-
[00:55] <Marianne> [The portal opened up once more, and this time, a horde of AT Progressive Knives shredded the Evangelion, crucifying it to the ground. Isabelle -screamed-. "T-The swords! A-Aaaaaaah-!"]
[01:01] * Aline stared, staring to shudder. "No no no nooooo. It won't end this way!" 00's wings expanded, and flared with energy. For the briefest moment, its AT field would suddenly spike in power, before- "I won't allow this." -a bloody aura expanded from it. Energy gathered on it, and pooled towards… 00's head? "I am the glory. I. AM-" Its 6 eyes glowed crimson, and a loud whine resonated
[01:01] * Aline over the battlefield. "-THE GLORY, THE MIGHT, THE SPLENDOUR." Then! A massive gigantic blood-red eyebeam shot straight for Elemiah!
[01:10] <Marianne> [… It swung to the side, the blade burning past.-
[01:11] <Marianne> [And then it counter-attacked. An EM burst- blinding Aline's sensors. The last thing she heard was Isabelle's screaming being cut off.]
[01:18] * Aline grumbled to herself. "Must've been hit by the same thing they were. If I have no sensors… I'll just have to use my inner eye." Which was code for AT perception, as 00 expanded its field just enough to 'blip' off of Elemiah's… and instantly, she aimed her rifle at the Angel response she got, and fired…!
[01:19] <Marianne> [… But she could feel that it didn't hit.-
[01:36] <Marianne> [Things were… Happening, but she couldn't see! She felt its AT Field be pierced by -something-…]
[01:37] * Aline couldn't really react to invisible forces, so she just kept firing, keeping her lock on the Angelic signature. Full auto, rapid fire, everything into the damn thing!
[01:49] <Marianne> [The bolts struck home, but-
[01:49] <Marianne> [Suddenly, Aline heard something. Not via comms. Via her ears. A -roar-. The roar of a beast.-
[01:50] <Marianne> [The flesh of Elemiah's skin started to boil and split. The Angel let out a moan- that became a scream. A claw burst from its chest from an inky dirac rupture.-
[01:50] <Marianne> [Then another claw.-
[01:51] <Marianne> [Like the birth of some sort of demonic beast, Evangelion Unit 04 ripped its way through the body, its flesh glistening- it fell out onto the sands, its wounded leg mangled, burned, but definitely there.-
[01:52] <Marianne> [Its jaws opened, and it roared.]
[01:53] <Marianne> "My… My God…"-
[01:53] <Marianne> There was nothing but a stunned, horrified silence within the command vehicle.
[01:53] * Aline stared blankly at her plug walls. She /knew/ that roar. A little too well by now. "Ohhhhhh shiiiiiit. I just won /and/ am in mortal danger." She almost sounded sulky, given the freedom of having no comms. "Fun."
[02:06] <Yanmei> A red orb glistened in the mangled lump of flesh that had once been the Angel. Red eyes honed in on it, blazing eagerly… and then 04 lifted a claw, slamming it down hard, cracking through a layer of AT field but not quite finding the mark.
[02:07] * Aline nonetheless knew exactly what she had to do. First… fly up a little, to be out of 04's /immediate/ reach… but second? She could still sense that Angelic field. Aline let 00's energy flow out into it, trying to break it down the rest of the way! "Come on, 04… Kill it. Rend its flesh!"
[02:22] <Yanmei> 04 -pounded-. It let loose another air-shattering roar, muffled by a finishing blow that had it sink its face into the broken Angel's chest cavity, obscuring the precious core, and tear at something with its teeth… and tear… and tear…
[02:25] <Marianne> [The core ripped free, little more than broken, shattered shards at this point.-
[02:26] <Marianne> [EVA-00's comms systems would finally clear, with a burst of static-
[02:26] <Marianne> "The Angel- yes, confirmed, the Angel is dead… But… 04…"
[02:28] * Aline nodded, looking around. "I could hear the roar. I'm airborne right now, and uh…" She scanned over. "Huh. When did that get there? Must've been during the blackout. We uh, have LN forces around too. I'm just going to uh, float here until I get further orders. 04 and all."
[02:30] <Marianne> "The LN Forces appeared some time ago. Captain Linden, do you copy?"-
[02:30] <Marianne> ["Yes, Colonel Amatore." A man's voice, smooth, with a German inflection.-
[02:32] <Marianne> "Thank you for your unexpected assistance. However, I must remind you that a state of war exists between us. Therefore, I believe it is within our best interests that we simply forget this ever happened."-
[02:32] <Marianne> ["Agreed." Said Linden, staring at EVA-04 with hard eyes.]
[02:34] * Aline nodded. "I'm just a kid and a lower-ranking pilot, anyway, but… well, I'm sure a tiny little truce wouldn't hurt given the circumstances." A shifty look, followed by an awkward noise. "Sorry for, uh, the explosions of gore all over your desert."
[02:34] <Yanmei> 04 pulled back slowly, the armor encasing its head dripping with gore, a long, thin, curved shard of something equally bloody gripped in its teeth. Its eyes roved. Carcasses strewn around it, EVA floating overhead. The T-RIDEN-T. Its gaze locked onto it. 04 stood up…
[02:39] <Yanmei> 04 loped a few dozen yards and crouched down again, eyes narrowing hard, still on the T-RIDEN-T. The object in its mouth - a long, slimy rib - slipped out, and crashed to the earth between them, a long trail of saliva following it. The EVA continued to stare as if hypnotized.
[02:40] <Marianne> ["… Mauschen, realign the Cannons' targeting feed onto that Evangelion's head." Said Linden, his voice taut. The T-RIDEN-T took several steps backward.-
[02:40] <Marianne> ["Yes, papa." A youthful girl's voice- which sounded far shakier.]
[02:41] <Yanmei> The movement caught it attention. A faint snarl of a warning mixed with… something lighter?
[02:42] * Aline sounded a bit uncertain. "I… I don't know. It looks like it's /interested/ rather than, uh, hungry?"
[02:42] <Marianne> ["…" The T-RIDEN-T took several more steps back now.]
[02:43] <Yanmei> 04 advanced again, maintaining the same distance.
[02:47] <Marianne> [So the T-RIDEN-T simply stood still, Great Positron Cannons trained on 04's head.]
[02:50] * Aline stared back and forth, pondering something, before just sighing. "…I hope we all have snacks."
[02:50] <Yanmei> 04 -stared-, apparently content with this Mexican standoff as it was.
[02:56] <Marianne> [Linden sighed. "Sorry, Colonel." He pulled his controls back-
[02:57] <Marianne> [The Cannons opened fire, two massive beams of energy streaking towards EVA-04's head.]
[02:59] <Yanmei> An agonized roar - cut brutally short. The Eva collapsed lifelessly backward with a massive thump.
[02:59] <Marianne> "…"-
[02:59] <Marianne> ["I apologise. I'll cover for you, but you must act fast."-
[03:00] <Marianne> "… Of course, Captain."-
[03:00] <Marianne> ["Come on, mauschen. Let's head home."-
[03:00] <Marianne> ["You're so brave-!"-
[03:00] <Marianne> [With a crouching jump, the T-RIDEN-T deployed its thruster wings and promptly escaped.]
[03:03] * Aline stared. "…That was nice of him. I didn't want blood-flavored rations anyway."
[03:05] <Marianne> "Linden…" Marianne's voice, however, was mystified. "But I thought he was dead…?"

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