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Let Me Play Among the Stars is an Neon Genesis Evangelion fanfic.

Written in Shinji's POV as his memoirs, it's dedicated to exploring the circumstances of Rei and Shinji being "roommates" rather than Shinji and Asuka, especially as Gendo orders Shinji and Rei to be together without Misato's supervision, at least at first. Also available here.


The work includes the following:

  • Above the Influence: To the point of Ignore the Fanservice. Shinji adamantly resists Rei's advances until after the two of them are married. Rei greatly appreciates this.
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  • Affectionate Gesture to the Head: Lara Croft loves to pet The Children on the head when praising them, and they all appreciate it. Heck, Asuka outright purrs!
  • Angrish: Asuka, per usual, very soon in chapter 6.
    Asuka: Bwargharhagahrah!
  • Bathtub Bonding: Invoked. Rei physically drags Shinji into the bath with her in chapter 2, to his shock. Though he does find that he likes the experience.
  • Because You Were Nice to Me: Both Shinji and Rei fall for each other because they treat each other like people, but for Rei it's far more profound as her diary entry reveals.
    • When Asuka joins the cast in Chapter 5, she's just the tiniest bit less Tsun and an even smaller measure of more Dere than in canon because she isn't sending mixed signals, and actually admits her feelings, straight up, thanks to Shinji and Rei being just that little bit nicer to her.
  • Bedmate Reveal: Double subverted. Both Rei and Asuka sneak into Shinji's bed at one point. He sleeps through it, presuming it was All Just a Dream, until he wakes up the next morning to see the both of them being lectured by Lara Croft.
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  • Best Served Cold: Gendo's plan for Misplaced Retribution against Shinji involves making the boy as happy as possible to then tear it all away, at the right moment. He fully expects Shinji to act the same way he did when he was a helpless 4-year-old.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: While there's no surprise that Shinji and Rei are people you don't want to piss off, some characters show a dark and sadistic side that doesn't get a mention in canon. "Rea" (pronounced Ray-ae not Ray-ah), Shinji and Rei's adopted "4-year-old" daughter, reenacts the opening scene of Elfen Lied when soldiers try to hurt her "mommy", and Maya of all people goes full-blown sadist when Shinji and Asuka are fighting Jaqueline Natla fused with Zeruel.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Gendo. While he presents himself as a Reasonable Authority Figure, in truth, he's just as sadistic as in canon and as early as chapter 3, reveals that he gave Rei over to Shinji so he could take her away later, just to make the boy suffer.
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  • Bridal Carry: Shinji tries to comply with the tradition of carrying his new wife across the threshold in chapter 3. He fails. When Rei is informed of the tradition by Misato, she responds by carrying him over the threshold, for her own amusement. This proves to foreshadow Shinji's Henpecked Husband status from that point on, to Misato's bemusement.
  • The Cavalry: Combined with Big Damn Heroes. Just like when it looks like The End of the World as We Know It in chapter 59, guess what comes over the horizon.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: While Rei and Asuka are quite comfortable sharing Shinji with each other, they are adamant about not sharing him with anyone else. When Kaworu starts coming on to Shinji in front of her, Rei responds with violence.
  • Covert Pervert: After physically dragging Shinji into the bath with her in chapter 2, Rei's diary entry reveals that she likes bathing with him for the same reason he likes bathing with her. Though it is yet to be revealed if she actually tells him this.
  • Composite Character: The president of the United States, Ronald W. Grump.
  • Crazy-Prepared: Gendo keeps official marriage forms in his office, just in case his Eva pilots want to marry each other at some point. Misato is highly suspicious about this. She's right.
  • A Day in the Limelight: Starting with an "intermission" between chapters 3 and 4, characters other than Shinji get their own diary entries to explain their thinking, starting with Rei.
  • Deliberate Values Dissonance: Hikari Horaki openly compares Gendo's "arranged marriage" orders to Rei to the practices of the Heian era in Japan at one point during Rei's "diary entry 1" chapter.
  • Double Think: Asuka is highly conflicted concerning how she feels about Shinji. She wants to utterly destroy him for being an anathema to her existence, but she also openly desires him because she finds him cute, he finds her cute, and is the first guy she's ever met who actually treats her like a girl, with actual thoughts and feelings. Then there's the fact that she doesn't know whether she should openly praise and kiss him for being Above the Influence, or clobber him when she deliberately puts herself in a vulnerable position before him, often wanting to do both at once. Unlike how she acts in canon, she does openly lampshade it here.
  • Extreme Libido: After Asuka's officially become Rei and Shinji's "comfort wife", we have this exchange...
    Asuka: Going to the beach is nice and all, but I'm a roller-coaster, kind of girl.
    Rei: That is not an exaggeration, nine times?
    Shinji: I... I don't think I can take any more...
  • Happily Married: Shinji and Rei officially tie the knot in chapter 3. Some fans find this a bit rushed.
  • Henpecked Husband: Several characters note that Rei is "the man of the house" in Shinji's life, including Shinji himself. He also admits that he likes being henpecked because Rei's cute little smile is Worth It.
  • I Am Not Pretty: When Shinji turned away from her naked body, both when she was on display in the LCL tank, and when they were forced to live together, Rei assumed that Shinji found her unattractive, and it annoyed her. After repeatedly being told that Shinji turned away precisely because he finds her attractive, although she completely fails to comprehend it, she finds herself really liking his reaction, and even blushing when she stops to think about it.
  • Innocent Cohabitation:
    • Despite having no choice but to share a bed, due to housing constraints, Shinji and Rei remain celibate, at least until they're officially married in chapter 3.
    • Once Lara Croft becomes The Children's official guardian, she slaps the "innocent" back on, with extreme prejudice, as Shinji winds up under one roof with Rei, Asuka, Misato, and Lara Croft herself, but everybody sleeps alone, in separate bedrooms. Both Rei and Shinji, who have been married for a while by that point, resent it.
  • Innocent Fanservice Girl: Rei, even more so than official canon, as she sees nothing strange about undressing right in front of Shinji, being on display in her LCL tank, or demanding that he undress, and then physically dragging him into the bath with her, or sleeping nude right next to him, despite the fact that they specifically went clothes shopping, and bought casual clothes, including pajamas, together.
  • Kill Sat: The Battlemoons from the series Shadow Raiders/War Planets get dragged into the story by the canon "Dirac Sea" incident involving Eva-04.
  • Knight of Cerebus: The arrival of the Cult of Xian changes the story from a lighthearted romantic comedy to the dramatic tragedy setting for which Evangelion is well known.
  • Lady Swearsalot: Asuka has one hell of a mouth on her. She even utters profanity, in German, in a stream-of-consciousness fashion at one point.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: Lara Croft is well aware video games of her exploits exist, and she discusses this fact with several other characters.
  • Like an Old Married Couple: As in official canon, whenever Shinji and Asuka quarrel, Shinji's classmates, particularly Toji, note this, even lampshading the trope by name. Surprisingly Asuka also has this dynamic with Rei, and the two of them are even more "in sync" with each other.
  • Loners Are Freaks: An unusual take. After Rei and Shinji get married, and Rei is therefore no longer alone, she stops being a freak, becomes openly engaged with school activities, and the rest of the class, student and teacher alike, are grateful towards Shinji for it.
  • Mask of Sanity: As in official canon, Gendo is great at pretending to be a decent and competent commander. In reality, he's a genocidal madman who places the blame for all his troubles not on the organization actually responsible for the loss of his wife, but on his own son who had no culpability whatsoever, and was completely incapable of doing anything to stop it.
  • Medical Rape and Impregnate: Twice. Gendo drugs two women with powerful aphrodisiacs and ovulation drugs against their will, then has them sexually exploited. He exploits and impregnates Ritsuko, and then later has a paralyzed Ramna, girl form, exploited by Tatewaki Kuno.
  • Misplaced Retribution: Gendo blames the loss of his wife, Yui, on the then four-year-old Shinji, who was neither responsible, nor had any way to stop it. He not only completely ignores SEELE's involvement in the affair, he's doing everything in his power to make Shinji suffer as much as possible before he dies.
  • Nailed to the Wagon: Gendo uses NERV's command structure to force sobriety on Misato. Unsurprisingly, she does not like it.
  • Otaku: Rei is a huge fan of Star Trek and Lord of the Rings, though lacks the trappings due to lack of availability. Rei's diary, on the other hand, shows that Shinji loves to buy her Trekkie merchandise when he can, to her enjoyment.
  • Perfectly Arranged Marriage: As Rei's diary reveals, Gendo outright orders Rei to sexually entrap Shinji and get him into a Shotgun Wedding. She's thrilled beyond measure at Shinji's Wacky Marriage Proposal in chapter 2 because he's not only marrying her because he actually wants to but because he's been so good to her that she actually wants to marry him too.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Rei and Asuka fit this trope to a T. Asuka is the Fiery Redhead in Shinji's life and Rei is the Shy Blue-Haired Girl and they near constantly engage in Snark-to-Snark Combat.
  • Samaritan Relationship Starter: What starts the chain reaction of kindness between Rei and Shinji ultimately leading to them marrying each other? Rei hears that Shinji rescued two civilians of his own volition, one of whom is Toji, the guy who punched him in the face on his first day in Tokyo-3's high-school.
  • Serial Rapist: Gendo. In the "drug them without their knowledge or consent" kind of way. Not only is he on-screen noted to drug women with powerful aphrodisiacs without their knowledge or consent, but it's implied that he's been drugging Ritsuko for years, and "offering her relief" after she's done as he commands, in a way that makes it look like she's been the one coming on to him all along. Misato is clearly not pleased on finding out.
  • Sex God: In chapter 4, to stop the rest of the class from pestering both Shinji and herself about their married life, Rei stoically admits that Shinji is talented in the bedroom, but adamantly refuses to go into detail.
    Rei: As for our married life, forget asking about detailed explanations, they're not going to happen. I will say this. Our wedding night was quite pleasant. Shinji-kun is a boy who likes to take his time, and that is all I'm going to say about that. You can fill in the blanks with your imagination, or better yet, DON'T.
  • Shout-Out: When Misato learns There Is Only One Bed as a result of Shinji and Rei being outright ordered to live together, she specifically mentions circumstances eerily similar to those of Kamijou Touma of A Certain Magical Index.
    Miasto: What the hell is the Commander expecting? Are you supposed to sleep in the bathtub?
  • Situational Sexuality: Asuka wanted Shinji's "loving" but after being stuck with both Rei and Shinji for a while, developed feelings for both of them.
  • Slave to PR: Gendo, of all people is this, as is revealed in chapter 3. He's looking to escape the shackles though, and that is clearly not good for The Children.
  • Take Our Word for It: Even though Rei and Shinji are legally married, and therefore can (and do) have sex with each other, legally, the rules of Sufficient Velocity forums, and the fact that both characters are teens around 14 years old, mandates that all that sort of "action" only takes place off-screen, and none of the characters can ever go into detail in discussing it.
    Asuka: That is so surprisingly... vanilla.
  • Tranquil Fury: When Shinji and Asuka are in "quarantine" (Read: Arrested for Heroism) after the Bardiel incident, Shinji tells her that the actual reason for his canon suicidal depression is that he's actually been pissed off for 10 years at Gendo, his "sensei," the world, everything, but having no valid outlet, it turned inward...
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Asuka is as vitriolic as in canon, but she openly admits that she treasures Shinji and Rei, though predominantly Rei, because the both of them are genuinely kind to her.
  • Vow of Celibacy: Invoked. For a time, thanks to Ireul playing around with the A-T fields belonging to Rei, Asuka, and Shinji, the three of them were forced to remain within two meters of each other at all times, but could not have sex, or the consequences could kill them, or so Ritsuko theorized. Jacqueline Natla and the Cult of Xian, out of petty spite tested the assertion, and proved Ritsuko right.
  • Wacky Marriage Proposal: Shinji doesn't just ask Rei to smile after the Ramiel battle. In chapter 2, he asks for her hand in marriage because he wants Glad-to-Be-Alive Sex, but doesn't want sex out of wedlock. While the fans seemingly don't have trouble with Shinji's actions, Rei's acceptance of the proposal does ruffle some feathers.
    • Rei eventually does the same to Asuka; however, Asuka really takes her time deciding on the response.
  • World of Jerkass: As in official canon, just about everyone in power and authority is a raging dick. As Lara Croft herself says best.
    Lara: Is there some kind of competition to see who's the biggest raging arse?!
  • Yank the Dog's Chain: After 10 years of abandonment, per official canon, Shinji's life starts looking up in NERV Tokyo-3. He gets a wife, and they're both Happily Married, then Asuka moves in and agrees to be the wife of both of them, then they get a wonderful (adopted) daughter, and just when Shinji thought he couldn't get any happier, Gendo, true to form, decides that's the perfect time to try and yank it all away.


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