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Fanfic / The Second Try

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Written and illustrated by Jimmy Wolk.

"Sometimes, destiny offers people another chance. Sometimes just to undo small mistakes. Sometimes even to avert the end of the world. But sometimes, the price for another chance is higher than anyone could guess..."

After Third Impact, Shinji and Asuka are the only humans left in the whole world, and they must carry on with only each other. And against all odds, they do, overcoming their own psychoses and insecurities and becoming better humans through it.

Then one morning, they both wake up to find that mankind has returned, they are in their younger bodies and living in Misato's apartment again, and only they have any memories of what has happened, and what is happening again, the little world they built for themselves destroyed.

And now they have to go through their most trying ordeals once more in the EVAs, and try to change history, while simultaneously deflecting suspicions of their changes, and coping with the loss of their old life.

The realm of Eva fics has numerous Post-Third Impact and Peggy Sue stories of varying quality. The Second Try (found here, here and here) has both plotlines, but ya know what? It works. The story has Asuka and Shinji change vastly from how they were in the series, but in small ways, so that Shinji is still Shinji and not Chuck Norris or The Chessmaster, and Asuka is still Asuka and not Belldandy or Ty Lee, and the reasons for these changes are organic and make sense in context for the characters.

Jimmy Wolk has since begun a sequel webmanga called Aki-chan's Life -and written a distant sequel called Aki2- which picks up right where the story leaves off. (Or rather, a week or two before the story actually ends.). He has also written The Ikaris and Long Time No See.

There is also a series of short stories made by a bunch of fans (found here, here, here, and here).

It has a crossover of sorts with Advice and Trust, approved by both Strypgia and Jimmy Wolk. In The "Chronicles" series, the A&T cast read TST after watching the original series and some of the Rebuild movies.

It has another crossover of sorts with Rise of the Minisukas in "The 3rd Try - No Explanations".

On July 2023, the author released the "Anniversary Edition" to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the original's release.


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  • Abandoned Hospital: Shinji and Asuka find and explore an abandoned hospital as they are scavenging the ruins of post-Apocalypse Tokyo-3 in the second chapter. Later they make use of its facilities to deliver their daughter.
  • Absurdly Youthful Parents: It's never clarified just how old Asuka and Shinji were when Aki was born as they hadn't been keeping track of time since the Third Impact (too busy with other matters). By their best guess about a year-and-a-half to two years passed before that, which would have put their age somewhere around 15 to 16. During Asuka's pregnancy, Shinji even worries a bit that her young age might cause complications.
    • Taken even further when they reunite with Aki in the last chapter: while Aki is still 4, Shinji and Asuka were returned into the bodies they had at 14, bringing the (physical) age gap between parents and daughter down to ten years. Shinji lampshades it in the epilogue when he mentions that their unusual family situation is likely to bring some awkward questions and formalities.
  • Abusive Parents: During his confrontation with Gendo in “Final”, Shinji summarized everything what his father had done to him:
    "What?" he whispered hoarsely, his trembling arms tugging unconsciously on the cuffs around his wrists. "WHAT?? Those words... those words that I had been longing to hear for so long... and you dare," tears formed in his eyes, but he couldn't tell whether from anger or disappointment, "you DARE to say them now? You've never been a father to me. You've sent me away, only called me back to pilot against my will, forcing me through the worst time of my life. Just in the last few hours, you imprisoned me, indirectly threatened to kill me and worst of all used my missing child to torture the woman I love. And you seriously expect me just to be... a good son... and tell you everything you want to know..."
  • Action Dad: Shinji is very protective of his daughter Aki. He's naturally quiet and non-confrontational, but hurting or threatening his daughter in any way, shape or form is guaranteed to trigger his Berserk Button. And then he will get in his giant robot and deliver a brutal beating.
  • Action Girl: Asuka. May God have mercy upon your soul if you threaten her family because she has bad temper, a giant robot, and slays giant monsters for a living.
  • Action Mom: Asuka had delivered and raised Aki together with Shinji for four years before getting dragged back to the past and fight the Angel War again.
  • Adam and Eve Plot: Asuka and Shinji discuss this during one of the "flashback" chapters.
  • Affectionate Gesture to the Head: Aki has this a lot of her loving parents in this story and the sequel as seen here.
  • After-Action Healing Drama:
    • In the first chapter, Asuka goes into Shinji's hospital room after the battle against Leliel. She slaps him for worrying her and then gives him a “welcome back” kiss.
    • The whole second chapter consists in Shinji and Asuka beginning to get over their wounds after the Final Battle and the end of the world.
    • When they managed to get Shinji out of Unit-01, Asuka kept watch over Shinji until he came round.
    • After the Final Battle Shinji meets Asuka in the med bay and both get ready to mourn Aki openly.
  • After the End: All named chapters before "repeat" are set here.
  • Air-Vent Passageway: Shinji used a ventilation shaft to sneak out and back in NERV in the second-to-last chapter.
  • All for Nothing: When Gendo interrogates his son, Shinji warns him that all his scheming and planning would be for nothing since everyone will die and Yui will never come back to him. Gendo refuses to believe it, but when he realizes Shinji is right, he tries to kill himself.
  • Always Save the Girl: Aside that all what Gendo did was because he missed his woman and he was perfectly willing turning the whole humankind into primordial soup only to see her again... and aside that Shinji lost his will to fight when he saw Asuka was dead, although that meant the end of the world... he almost caused the Third Impact again when he thought Asuka had been killed because he could not stand losing her. Deconstructed because later he realized he really would have lost everything if he would have done so.
    Yui: Is it okay now?
    Shinji: Yeah. She's fine. That's all that matters to me.
  • Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: Discussed when Asuka and Shinji talk about throwing a birthday party for Aki so they can embarrass her in a few years with the photos. Fortunately for Aki, the pictures were left behind when they all got sent back in time.
  • Anachronic Order: The story alternates its chapters between the Peggy Sue and Post-Third Impact storylines. Meanwhile the last chapter takes place in the same timeframe as the previous chapter but from a different point of view.
  • And I Must Scream: Gendo's fate. He falls into a coma. Later he becomes kind of aware, but his whole body is completely paralyzed and he can't communicate with anybody. He wonders if this is his punishment, since he can't even kill himself to try and see Yui again.
  • And Now for Someone Completely Different: The start of the last chapter "end" shows the events of the last day from Rei's viewpoint.
  • …And That Little Girl Was Me: In "Raise", Shinji is telling his little daughter a tale about a prince, his princess and his sister that fought huge monsters wearing living armors. However Aki easily guesses that the prince and the princess of the tale are he and Asuka (meaning her parents) and he is telling a tale about their lives.
  • Anger Born of Worry: Asuka to Shinji a good number of times:
    • In the post-Impact chapters every time he was missing for hours (in episodes 4 and 6).
    • In the post-time travel chapters, Shinji gets slapped by Asuka twice as he's waking up in the hospital for having her worried. The first time after the fight with the 12th, the second after his month-long stay in Unit-01. Each time is immediately followed by a kiss.
    • Right before the JSSDF attack Shinji broke curfew to go back to their apartment, not telling Asuka was he was going to do or where he was going, and he left her worrying for hours. When he returned he got a well-deserved slap.
  • Anti-Hero: Subverted. Shinji and Asuka were this in the original timeline and in the After the End chapters (since they fought to save the world for selfish reasons or merely struggled to suvive), but in the "repeat" chapters they're straight up heroes: They really don't have any reason to pilot the Evangelions anymore. They lost everything the first time around, they had dealt with their issues and regrets a long time ago, and now they've lost their daughter. They don't have any attachments to the world, nor anything to gain from saving it. But they choose to fight anyways, just to give the world another chance.
  • The Apocalypse Brings Out the Best in People: Both Shinji and Asuka become much more confident and capable people after Third Impact.
  • Apologises a Lot: At the beginning of the story Asuka still got angry cause Shinji's constant apologies (and Shinji mentions that he knows how much she hated his excuses). After several years of relationship and marriage, though, she joked about it.
  • Archnemesis Dad: After returning to the past, Shinji is determined to ruin his father’s plans.
  • Arc Words:
    • Gendo said this to Shinji: "Do not ask questions you don't really want to hear the answer to". Later on, Shinji threw that line back in his father’s face.
    • "Smile when you're happy, cry when you're sad." Originally a piece of advice given by Asuka to her daughter so she wouldn't make the mistake of suppressing her true feelings like she used to do, Asuka remembers this line when Rei asks her a question about her feelings regarding Shinji's absence following his absorption inside Unit-01, lamenting that she's unable to follow her own advice. Later on, when she reunites with Aki, she appends it with: "And do both when you're happier than you've ever been."
  • Are You Sure You Can Drive This Thing?: Chapter 2 "Survive" narrates how Shinji and Asuka prepared themselves to survive in a post-apocalyptic world. At a point Asuka insists on driving a car. Shinji points out they don't even know how drive and asks if she is really sure she wants to drive that car. Asuka replies it can not be harder than driving a giant robot. Cue hilarious moments: the engine stalled, they drove slowly because Asuka often forgot change the gears or stepped too hard on one of the pedals, and they almost crashed into a broken-down car.
  • Armor-Piercing Question: After Gendo discovers that his son and Asuka's machinations, he interrogates them to pry their knowledge of the future out of them. Shinji demolishes him with a single line:
    Shinji: "Do you really think she would come back to you because of that?"
  • The Atoner: Shinji and Asuka subvert this, surprisingly. At the beginning it looks like they're trying to save the world after going back to the past because they let it die in the original timeline. However, it becomes more apparent as the story goes on that they've largely come to terms with their failings, and they're not motivated by regret and/or guilt.
  • Attention Whore: Subverted. Although she got over that phase several years ago and drawing attention towards herself is the last thing she wants right now, Asuka gets forced to play the part so that nobody realizes that she and Shinji are time-travelers. Ironically, since she is a twenty-years-old woman stuck into the body of her thirteen-years-old self, she realizes how childish was that attitude.
  • Aw, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: Chapters 2 “Survive” and 4 “Love” explore Shinji and Asuka’s slowly developing relationship during nearly two years. Even at the beginning, when they’re merely trying to not kill each other –again-, they still try to help and support each other.
  • Babies Ever After: Misato is revealed to be preggers with Kaji's baby in the epilogue.
  • Babies Make Everything Better: Aki Ikari. Note that this trope is shown in a much more realistic light. The pregnancy initially put a huge strain on Shinji's and Asuka's relationship (Asuka never wanted a child due to her fears of being replaced; Shinji was scared out of his wits due to his own issues with his father), and both had to do some serious soul searching to get to the point where they were emotionally prepared to be parents. Even after the birth, they had to work hard, make mistakes, and deal with situations they were not prepared for.
  • Baby's First Words: In chapter eight, Asuka tries to teach her daughter to say her first words. After successfully saying "Mama", she tries to get her to say "Papa" but she says "Baga" instead.
  • Back-to-Back Badasses: During the SEELE's attack, Shinji and Asuka did this when they were fought the army (Asuka charged the enemy as Shinji stood behind her, protecting her back). When the Mass-Production EVAs attacked them, Touji joined them.
  • Badass Bookworm: Both Asuka and Shinji have to become this in order to survive the post-Third Impact world, since they're the only humans left on the planet.
  • Bandage Mummy: In chapter 2 "Survive", set after Third Impact, Asuka's nearly whole body is wrapped in bandages -and her eye covered by a patch- for a good portion of the chapter.
  • Bath Suicide: Mentioned. When Asuka was about to have a bath, she spent a while staring at the tube because it reminded her that she sat in a bathtub and slit her wrists during a breakdown once upon a time.
  • Battle Couple: Shinji and Asuka, even more than in the original series now they are serious about fighting and want to support and help each other. It even is noted by Kaworu.
    • In second-to-last episode:
    Asuka (to Shinji): I'll handle them. These guys aren't the real problem after all. Just take care of my cable, okay?
    Shinji (smiling weakly and nodding): Of course.
    • And later in the same episode:
    General: Concentrate all fire on that power cable!
    Comm-Officer: It's no use, Sir! Purple's guarding it!
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: Shinji and Asuka are brought back because they just happened to make an off-handed wish for Aki to have friends. Needless to say, Shinji doesn't take this excuse very well.
  • Beautiful Dreamer: Done by Shinji and Asuka several times in the post-End of the World chapters when they start sleeping together.
    • Chapter 6 begins with Shinji looking at Asuka as she sleeps and thinking of how much he enjoys staring at her beautiful face.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: Played with. Living on their own had helped Shinji and Asuka grow past this point, but after getting thrown back in time, they try enacting this trope to avoid arousing suspicion. The key word there is "try".
  • Beneath the Mask: During their wedding, Shinji told Asuka that he had seen under her "tough girl" mask and he realized that she was a vulnerable, hurt girl who he wanted to protect with all his strength.
  • Benevolent Boss: After the Final Battle, Fuyutsuki becomes NERV’s commander. He’s way kinder, more understanding and more reasonable than his predecessor ever was.
  • Berserk Button:
    • Taunt Asuka with her daughter's name or threaten to harm Shinji in front of her. Come on! I dare you! When Gendo tried this, he was a tad bit surprised when she lunged at him and nearly got her hands around his neck.
    • Likewise, Shinji doesn't take too kindly towards anyone who tries/threatens to harm Asuka. While he's pretty good at keeping his cool, some MP-EVAs found out the hard way what happens if this button gets pressed too hard. Stupid bastards never saw it coming.
  • Beta Couple:
    • Shinji and Asuka played matchmaker for Touji and Hikari. Eventually they got together.
    • Misato and Kaji.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Once again, Shinji. More so than in the original timeline as he's no longer plagued by crippling insecurities. Exemplified in his rematch with the 13th angel. He keeps calm during the fight, retains control of his EVA when Gendo tries to activate the Dummy Plug, and after Rei safely extracts the Entry plug from Unit 03, pulls out his prog knife and practically butchers the thing before killing it with repeated stabs to the core.
  • Beware the Quiet Ones: Rei is usually quiet and composed. Threaten her niece and she’ll make you wish you’re dead.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Touji comes along during the battle against the MP-Evas piloting the Jet Alone to help Shinji and Asuka. Unfortunately he was unable to fight effectively.
  • The Big Damn Kiss: At the end of chapter 4, "Love", Shinji and Asuka get married and kiss in front of the Red Sea (which means that they kiss in front of literally everybody) and remaining kissing for a long while as the sun sets.
  • Big Ego, Hidden Depths: Asuka. Who would guess what that boastful, cranky, rash, childish teenager in reality is a mature young wife and mother who is trying to save the same world who took her family away from her again.
  • Big Good: Kaworu of all people. What pushes him into this territory is that not only did he make so that Third Impact was averted, he made it so that Aki could grow up normally with her parents. He's still a bit of a dick but saving all 3 billion people on Earth allows you to be.
  • Bilingual Bonus: Asuka and Aki speak a lot of German, including several children's songs. Which makes sense, since both the characters and the author are German.
  • Birthday Episode: In chapter 8 Shinji surprises Asuka announcing he has kept track of time and in two weeks it will be one year since Aki's birthday. Asuka right away decides they need to throw a party and take photos of her first birthday to torture her with in a few years.
  • Blackmail: Kaji threatens Japanese's Prime Minister with releasing to the public a lot of unpleasant documents detailing his involvement with SEELE unless he cancels the attack on NERV.
  • Blatant Lies: Shinji is forced to apply this trope:
    Touji: Thanks for saving me Shinji.
    Shinji: No problem.
    Asuka: Ahem.
    Shinji: Actually, Asuka and Rei were a great help.
    Asuka: Ahem.
    Shinji: I mean me and Rei were helping her really.
    Asuka: AHEM.
    Shinji: Not that she needed it.
    Touji: I'm not thanking your "wife" just because she made you want me to.
  • Blue-and-Orange Morality: Kaworu. He finds humans thinking and emotions -such like fear- alien and disconcerting, and people also finds him weird and even unsettling. Asuka defined the mere fact of meeting and talking to him like "unsettling". Maya found her utter unguardedness disturbing and somewhat eerie. Toji wondered if he was homosexual, but Kaworu had no idea of what he meant when when Toji asked politely. He also told to Shinji life and death are as unimportant to him as are time and space.
  • Bonding over Missing Parents: During the After the End chapters, Shinji and Asuka eventually talk about their deceased mothers, and their relationship strengthens.
  • Bonus Material: Jimmy's website includes additional art and drawings and sketches of several scenes. The fourth chapter also has an omake.
  • Brain Bleach: In chapter 3, Misato gets up to her old tricks and asks Shinji, Asuka, and Rei if they went for a threesome in the bushes during their hike. Asuka promptly screams that she needs a shower to get those disgusting images out of her head. It probably wasn't an act either.
  • Break the Cutie: Shinji. After enduring parental abandonment, becoming a child soldier and surviving the end of the world, he managed to go past his issues, hook up with the woman he loved and become a father. And then he got suddenly thrown back in the past without his daughter, and he was forced to repeat everything.
  • Break the Haughty: Asuka was arrogant and loud because she tried to overcome her childhood traumas by becoming the best pilot ever. She got beaten and humiliated repeatedly; then she was abandoned and replaced, and shortly after she died in a gruesome way. She managed to live beyond the end of the world, mature, get married to her love and have a beautiful daughter… and then everything was taken from her.
  • Break Them by Talking: After Kaworu's death Gendo has Shinji and Asuka brought before him to interrogate them about their knowledge of the future. However Shinji tells him that he and everybody else will die because his plan and Yui will not return to him. The idea that he will never see his wife again is more than Gendo can bear. His first reaction is trying to convince himself that his son is lying. When it does not work, he tries to kill himself.
  • Breaking the Cycle of Bad Parenting: Both Shinji and Asuka are phenomenally better parents to their daughter, Aki, than their own parents ever were for them, managing to raise her in a post-apocalyptic environment while dealing with their own psychoses and still have her come out well adjusted enough to integrate into normal society when they're sent back in time. They both lampshade this repeatedly.
  • Bring My Red Jacket: Asuka usually took the brunt of the fights due to her aggressive fighting style, and her red mecha was maimed in nearly every battle: Zeruel loped Unit-02 head's off, Tabris cut its hands off, the MP-Evas nearly ate her alive again...
  • Broken Ace: Asuka. She was the best Eva pilot and fighter, but she was very broken after the war. She managed to get better, but losing her daughter when she was sent back in time, nearly broke her down again.
  • Broken Bird: Asuka’s life story is an endless cycle where she loses something or someone dear to her, and she tries to get over her pain. In “Repeat” she was shattered because her daughter had disappeared, but after a while she managed to recover her fighting spirit.
  • Broken Hero: Shinji and Asuka tried to get over their traumas and losses and become a little more upbeat.
  • Brother–Sister Incest: Discussed. After Third Impact, Shinji and Asuka are the only surviving humans. At one point they argue that, if they have children and let them repopulate the world, sibling incest would be a problem.
  • But We Used a Condom!: Asuka gets pregnant with Shinji's child despite being on The Pill. Granted, the pills were past their expiration date (what else could she use in a post Third-Impact world?). Shinji, however, privately suspects that Asuka forgot to be consistent in taking them. Of course, she also notes that there are rare cases where the contraceptives don't work, and lampshades it with a weary "we've beaten worse odds before".
  • Calling the Old Man Out:
    • Shinji finally snaps at Gendo during The Final.
    • He partially snapped in Repeat, too:
      Shinji: You know, I thought I might be able to understand you better by now. But actually I understand you even less than before. How... How can anyone really want to send his own child away?
      Gendo: I have no reason to explain myself if you are already aware that you cannot understand.
      Shinji: No, maybe not. You'd just blame everything on the pain of losing her anyway. Do you really think you're the only one who ever felt like that? You're not the only one who lost a loved one! (...) But unlike most, you didn't hold dear what was left of her. Instead of using it to remember the love she gave, you just saw it as reminder of her loss. So you just threw it all away, because the very existence hurt you.
    • Shinji eventually compels him to let him pilot Unit-01 against the 14th Angel when it becomes obvious that the Dummy Plug won't work, no matter how hard they try.
  • Call to Agriculture:
    • In the After the End chapters Shinji and Asuka become farmers. However they hardly had other choice, since they were the only living human beings in the planet and they need to grow their own stuff to survive.
    • After returning to the past, winning the Angel War and averting the Apocalypse they become owners of a garden-market, this time for choice (seen in greater detail in the sequel).
  • Cannot Spit It Out: A humorous subversion. Hikari goads Asuka into confessing her feelings for Shinji, believing she is unable to. The audience, however, knows that Asuka had gotten WAY past that step several years ago (or, depending on the point of view, several years later... Time travel is migraine-inducing).
    • Played in an interesting manner in "Love": after an argument in which Asuka told Shinji that he would be unable to notice if someone had feelings for him but was unable to express them, the two have a bit of pillow talk where Asuka timidly points out that she was talking about herself, to which Shinji answers that he understood and has the same feelings for her. Yet, in spite of having finally spit it out, they both tiptoe around each other for the next few days, afraid of making the next move, until Asuka eventually gets fed up with it and decides to tackle the issue, leading to the First Kiss of their relationship.
  • Can't Have Sex, Ever: Downplayed; there's nothing physically stopping them, but Asuka points out that they are subject to frequent, invasive medical checks likely to notice if she'd become sexually active. Since this would lead to questions they don't want to answer, they refrain until just before the final battle, at which point they decide they no longer care. They also still spend quite a bit of time making out.
  • Can't Live with Them, Can't Live without Them: Shinji and Asuka. This was apparent in the series to everybody except them, but in the fanfic they became aware of the fact during the After the End chapters (and Asuka is particularly hit hard by it). When one of them is missing, the another gets worried and upset. When they are neither talking to each other nor sleeping together because of a fight, they miss each other. And both are terrified of the possibility of breaking up and going separate ways after a dispute.
  • Cassandra Truth: When Gendo confronts Shinji about his conversation with Asuka during the attack by the 15th Angel, Shinji tells him exactly what's going on. Gendo promptly dismisses his son's warnings as the ravings of a mad child because he refuses to believe that he'll never see his wife again.
  • Character Development: Some of the best development for Shinji and Asuka in all of fan fiction takes place during the Post-Third Impact chapters.
    • The real brilliance of the fic comes from watching them switch back and forth from their old selves to their post TI-selves. It really makes it clear to the reader how much they've grown.
  • Character Tics: The nervous tic that Shinji displayed in the series, the clenching/relaxing of his left hand, shows up again just before the battle with the 12th angel. However, in another example of character growth, Shinji actually notices this and makes himself stop (and also mentally lampshades how "old habits are hard to break".)
  • The Chessmaster: Subverted. Shinji and Asuka try to use their knowledge of the future and of NERV and SEELE's goals to outwit them and avert The End of the World as We Know It, but they're not Gendo Ikari and he eventually figures their secret out. Though they do have some small successes here and there, such as playing matchmaker for Toji and Hikari.
  • Chekhov's Gun:
    • In chapter 2, Shinji and Asuka checked the Tokyo-3 hospital, and found that it seemed to be in perfect shape and the emergency power-generator was still working. Asuka stated that it could be useful in the future. In chapter 4, Asuka gave birth Aki in that hospital.
    • The "Anonymous" letter that Shinji slips into Misato's jacket during chapter 3. Misato finds it during the aftermath of the battle with the 14th angel, and leads to her learning of Shinji and Asuka's secret.
  • Chekhov's Skill: In chapter 4, Asuka declares that Shinji will be responsible for the main medical care. In chapter 6, Shinji uses what he learnt to take care of Asuka during her pregnancy, and delivering Aki safely.
  • Cheshire Cat Grin: When Gendo demands knowledge of the future, Shinji grins coldly and maniacally before replying that he’ll die.
  • Children Are Innocent: So innocent that they can convince Asuka to save the world and keep Rei from destroying it.
  • Children Raise You: Played quite realistically after Asuka and Shinji find out her birth control has failed. Neither of them take it well at first, but once the shock wears off it makes their relationship even stronger, and they go on to be very Good Parents to little Aki.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: Asuka was one in the original series (part of her animosity towards Rei was due to her misconception that Shinji liked Rei instead of her). Her jealousy had mellowed due to her feeling more confident about herself and their relationship; however, she makes no attempt to hide her hostility towards Kaworu and makes it clear that she wants him nowhere near her husband.
    • There may have been a little jealousy there, but she was more worried that Shinji would get hurt again.
    • In chapter 10, it's pointed out that the only reason she hasn't felt jealousy in years is because she had no one but her daughter to "compete" with for Shinji's affection.
  • Coming of Age Story: The post-Third Impact chapters set in the future revolve around Shinji and Asuka growing into mature young adults and becoming parents.
  • Convenient Coma: Gendo falls into one after his suicide attempt. It's mostly convenient for Shinji, as he uses the opportunity to explain what happened at the end of the story, but it ends with the possibility he may never recover.
  • Conveniently an Orphan: Shinji and Asuka and all their classmates are orphans.
  • Conversational Troping: Done during the post-Third Impact chapters (examples include Adam and Eve Plot to I Hate Past Me) between Shinji and Asuka. Justified, what with both being the only two people left on earth and needing to pass the time.
  • Converse with the Unconscious: In the last scene, the Ikari family visits a comatose Gendo, and Shinji spends a while talking to him, telling what they’d been doing since the final battle, and finally confessing that maybe he can understand him a little better now.
  • Cooldown Hug: Just so many... Usually Shinji is the one who does the embracing. It's somewhat funny that the timid little introvert became the more emotionally stable of the two.
    • The FIRST scene -that spawned the whole fic- consisted of Shinji embracing Asuka to cheer her up.
    • Shinji hugging Asuka in "Love" after their Freak Out.
    • Shinji hugging Asuka several times in "Repeat" because she was feeling awful.
    • Shinji sitting down with Asuka and embracing her after her Mind Rape (and Asuka stating who knows how much could have changed if he would have done that the first time).
  • Cool Aunt: Rei. Her niece Aki adores her and loves spending time with her. In turn, Rei protects her and looks after her.
  • Cosy Catastrophe: Zig-Zagged. After TI, Shinji and Asuka take up residence in a subsistence farm that came out of the event mostly intact. The place was (is? will be?) a nice find; largely self supportive with solar panels and batteries, a generator, rainwater collection system, usable garden, room for livestock, furnished living quarters, a fully stocked repair shed, and a working truck with the added bonus of being close to several city ruins ripe for scavenging. However, they had to work really hard to make it work.
  • Covert Pervert: Shinji is peacefully watching Asuka breastfeed their child. She sees him looking at her and asks if he's jealous and wants a taste. Shinji said it best:
    "You know, for someone who kept calling me a pervert... you have some very interesting thoughts."
  • Crazy Jealous Guy: Played with. Shinji is possessive, but when Hikari convenced Asuka to go to a blind date, he wasn't jealous because he knew Asuka didn't like that student. He got annoyed when Asuka had to pretend that she still had a crush on Kaji, though.
  • Cruel Mercy: Ritsuko claims that she saved Gendo's life because being in a coma is a fate worse than death to him, though it's not clear whether she's being sincere.
    "Though you still would have died if Ritsuko hadn't found and helped you. At first she always said she didn't even know why she had done it. Later she changed it to 'Having to live in this condition is a bigger punishment for him than death'."
  • Cruel to Be Kind: In chapter six Asuka falls into a depression and stops eating due to her pregnancy. Shinji makes several attempts to reason with her, but Asuka always was too stubborn for her own good, and he's forced to play the guilt card.
    Shinji: Why did you lie?
    Asuka: What?
    Shinji: When it became apparent that we'd be the only ones left, I was glad that at least you were here with me. Not because I was with somebody, but because I was with you. And I believed you, when you said that you would feel the same way about me. But that was just a lie, wasn't it? It never mattered to you that it was me. You just didn't want to be alone; anybody would... (Asuka slaps him)
    Asuka: How... how dare you...?
    Shinji: If you really love me, why are you trying to take away what I love more than anything else?
    Asuka: So you already love it mo...
    Shinji: I'm talking about you! Can't you see that it will kill you if you go on like this? Didn't you say you never wanted to give up life again?
    Asuka: I- I did... didn't want... I...
    Shinji: So, do you really want to leave me here by myself... or are you going to eat something?
    Asuka (giving in): This isn't fair...
    Shinji: No. No, it's not...
  • Curse Cut Short: In the last episode, a police officer begins saying "Ah... shi-", and then he catches himself when he realizes there is a little kid in the room.
  • Curtain Fic: It's debatable how much "finding food and shelter" and "maintaining the homestead's defenses" can be considered normal chores, but the post-Third Impact chapters do qualify, in a weird post-apocalyptic sort of way.
  • Cuteness Overload: Rei, of all people, is hit by this. Meeting and being befriended by Aki is what finally convinces her to ditch Gendo's plan. Although, in the following webcomic, Aki causes this in pretty much everyone.
  • Cuteness Proximity: Ridiculously adorable four year-old Aki has this effect on Rei of all people in the last chapter, which ends up probably the first case of this trope preventing The End of the World as We Know It.


  • Damned by Faint Praise: Rei resorts to this to critique a drawing of her. It works because the artist is only three.
    "How you like it?" she eventually ended Rei's wondering.
    Taken aback, the teen didn't answer immediately. Being honest was likely to hurt the girl's feelings, and Rei didn't want that. But wouldn't she also do the same by lying to her?
    "The... shade of blue is well chosen," she eventually settled for.
  • Dead Guy Junior: Discussed but ultimately averted. Shinji and Asuka don't want their child to have to try to live under the shadow of someone they're named after.
    • Downplayed later on when Asuka suggests to Aki that she name her doll after her maternal grandmother, but it gets corrupted from Kyoko to Kiko due to her mishearing the suggestion.
  • Dead Person Conversation: Asuka talks with Aki during Arael's Mind Rape as a form of mental protection. Aki later turned out to be alive (even though she wasn't at the time of the conversation) which makes this a subversion.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Shinji isn’t usually sarcastic, but he gives some good one-liners once in a while:
    • When Shinji and Asuka are picking a name for their baby:
      Asuka: Making two lists is double the amount to bicker about.
      Shinji: (muttering) Since when do you mind to bicker about something?
    • When Shinji is arrested, he feels pretty snarky.
      "You seem to feel rather brave today," he allowed himself to comment sarcastically, tugging demonstratively at the over-the-top three-layered handcuffs that still encased his wrists.
  • Death by Childbirth: The author leads the audience into thinking that Asuka died giving birth to Aki, even though it's a Foregone Conclusion that she survives.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen:
    • Shinji to Asuka. After the Angel War and Third Impact Asuka was angry, bitter and not in mood to grant second chances due to Shinji failing her over and again during the conflict. Still, they were living alone in a post-apocalyptic world so they had to work together closely since they could only depend on each other. Shinji learnt to reach her out and she opened up to him eventually, admitting her own part in the mess what was her pre-Impact relationship, and falling in love with Shinji.
    • Aki to Rei. Shinji and Asuka had been trying defrosting Rei for months, but Aki involuntarily managed to coax Rei to display her feelings in a very short while.
  • Defusing the Tyke-Bomb: Shinji and Asuka defused each other after Third Impact. When they went back to the past, defusing Rei was one of their main goals. Thanks to them -and mainly Aki- Rei managed to recover her lost humanity.
  • Delivery Guy: Being the last man on Earth, Shinji had to fill this part when Asuka gave birth to their daughter. Even if Shinji already had some medical knowledge and had a few months to focus his studies on obstetrics, he was understandably apprehensive over having to handle alone the task of safely bringing to the world his wife's child at such a young age (both his and Asuka's). Once again, Asuka's moral support before and during the labor (despite being in pain from childbirth herself) went a long way to alleviate his worries.
  • Despair Event Horizon:
    • Narrowly averted twice. Once during the rematch with Arael, and the second when Shinji thinks Asuka's dead, almost starting Third Impact again.
    • Played straight with Gendo who crosses it after he realizes Rei isn't going to help him. He promptly decides to commit suicide.
  • Destroy the Security Camera: Asuka destroys the security camera in Shinji's hospital room so nobody can see them kissing.
  • Determinator: Shinji became one after Third Impact. Since running, hiding and complaning had gotten him nowhere, he decided to make an effort to be more determined and resolute.
  • Determined Defeatist: Sometimes Shinji and Asuka lose hope and think that they have no chance to change the future. Nonetheless, they keep trying.
  • Devoted to You: After the end of the world, Shinji and Asuka had to work together to survive. Their bonds got stronger and they became extremely devoted to each other.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: In chapter 11 Asuka punched Kaworu in the gut. Later on, she gets the drop on him after he takes control of EVA-02 and uses it to tear apart NERV to get to Lilth. Unbeknownst to him, she hid herself inside Unit-02, and overrides his control right as Shinji makes his appearance in EVA-01. Kaworu is so surprised at this that he actually drops his usual smile for a look of pure shock.
  • Didn't See That Coming: SEELE's reaction to Toji appearing by piloting Jet Alone and the death of the first MP-EVA. Their following argument gets so heated that they don't even notice that someone is missing.
  • Disappeared Dad:
    • Shinji' and Asuka's fathers abandoned them. Asuka is willing to make peace with her family, but Shinji called Gendo out several times.
    • Aki suffered a minor case of this when she went sent back to the the past. When she woke up, her parents were gone. She got scared, ran from her house and got lost. Fortunately Rei ran into her and helped her to look for them, but she was terrified until they found them.
  • Doorstopper: The story totals 211,058 words, not counting the sequels.
  • Dramatic Irony: As trying to play her old role in "Repeat", Asuka realizes that her claims of being a grownup, her attempts to seem it and her demands to be treated like such not only proved that she was still a child but also made her seeming even more childish. Sadly, she has to keep the masquerade instead of behaving like the adult she is now.
  • Driven to Suicide:
    • When Gendo arrives in Terminal Dogma and finds that Rei isn't there he tries to kill himself in a last ditch attempt to be with Yui again. It doesn't work.
    • The epilogue reveals that two SEELE members also tried to do it to escape arrest after their group was publicly exposed by Kaji. One succeeded, the other didn't.
  • Drives Like Crazy:
    • During the After the End chapters Asuka insisted on driving a pickup truck in spite of having absolutely no idea. She nearly crashed the truck several times. Probably didn't help that it was also a stick shift. Her skills improved after a while, however.
    • Misato's bad driving got mentioned in the sequel.
  • Dude, She's Like in a Coma:
    • After the defeat of the Seventeeth Angel, Shinji visits a sleeping Asuka in the hospital, and unlike what he did in the original timeline, he kisses her. Asuka wakes up during the kiss and jokingly tells maybe he should have tried that the last time instead.
    • Also happens in chapter 6, after Asuka gave birth to Aki and passed out from the stress of the delivery (she and the audience were led to believe — wrongly — that she was dying). Shinji kisses her just before she wakes up, surprised to be still alive, and he even cracks a joke about it.
  • Dying Moment of Awesome: Kaworu spends his final moments explaining to a depressed Shinji in great detail how he really did Set Right What Once Went Wrong, revealing that his daughter is still alive, and giving Shinji encouragement that he, his wife, and their friends would be able to save the world, while at the same time implying that he was behind the whole Peggy Sue part of the plot in the first place and did it just to help give Aki a normal life. Damn, way to be a hero, man.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: Well, yeah. After the End, Shinji and Asuka had to fend for themselves in an empty world and lean on each other to heal their deep-rooted emotional wounds. It took them a great deal of effort, but they eventually managed to build themselves a nice and functional household (both in terms of living conditions and emotional bonds) and even to successfully raise a daughter, allowing them to live happy together at last. Then they were unexpectedly brought back six years in the past before all went From Bad to Worse, having to cope with the additional trauma of losing their daughter in the process, had to pretend to the world that everything was normal about them (which forbade them any public display of affection or mourning) while subtly working to prevent The End of the World as We Know It. They sometimes stumble and suffer many a heartache along the way, but in the end, they get rewarded beyond their wildest hopes (see Everybody Lives below).
  • Easily Forgiven: Justified in-story by Asuka; after Third Impact she tells Shinji she's too tired to fight and anyway they have no choice but to cooperate to survive. That said, while they do eventually work past their problems they are not on good terms for some time other than a bare working relationship. It takes several weeks for Asuka to even be willing to discuss why she's upset and several more months after that before she's willing to forgive him.
  • Eldritch Abomination: Kaworu, by far. Not only can he not truly die even if his body is destroyed, but he also has time travel and reality warping powers that are hardly explained. It's mostly because of Shinji that he's on the side of good, otherwise everybody would very likely be screwed.
  • The End of the World as We Know It: After the Third Impact Shinji and Asuka are the only people left on Earth: Humanity has been wiped out, human cities are in ruins, the world has became a wasteland and wildlife is getting out of control.
    Shinji: It wasn't a threat! You will die! Everyone will die! You're right; I've seen it! I've seen the end of the world! Just because of that selfish plan of yours!
  • Entertainingly Wrong: When Asuka's synch ratio drops, Ritsuko blames it on Asuka getting upset after Zeruel defeated her. A reasonable conclusion, since she doesn't know that Asuka “went through a hell that led to the destruction of the world, recently lost her child, then for some time her lover as well, now probably another close person, and is about to face that aforementioned hell once again.”
  • Everybody Lives: At the end of the story, not only SEELE's Assimilation Plot has been thwarted and every death in the main cast averted (even Gendo's karmic retribution only puts him in a vegetative state), but Shinji and Asuka's daughter who was assumed to be Ret-Gone is brought back to them, making their family complete again. The only onscreen deaths are Rei (who, par for the course, comes back), Kaworu (after a heartwarming speech to convince a reluctant Shinji of its necessity), and Kyoko (by way of Heroic Sacrifice).
  • Everyone Can See It: Humorously inverted this time around. The rest of this cast assume this is the case with Asuka and Shinji. However, no one has any idea that, not only are they a couple, but they have been married for over 5 years, and raised a child together.
  • Expository Hairstyle Change: Asuka cuts her hair to shoulder length at some point during the post-TI chapters because a baby Aki kept pulling on it.
  • Expendable Clone: No one -but Shinji, Misato and maybe Asuka- cared about Rei's clones, not even Rei. She insisted that her spare bodies were soulless constructs and then she destroyed them.
  • Face Your Fears: Asuka finally confronts her pediophobia in chapter 8 after she ends up scaring Aki when she has a panic attack.
    "It's about time that I bury my demons. Especially if they're starting to hurt my daughter as well..."
  • Fake Period Excuse: Indirect example; Misato claims that Asuka is having her period to explain why her Sync Ratio had dropped.
  • Faking the Dead: Kaji, after being warned about his impending termination by the letter Shinji gave him. A bulletproof vest, some blood packs and a bit of Playing Possum allow him to live through his encounter with the hitman sent after him. He's even helped by the incompetence of his would-be killer who walks away without checking his body.
  • Falling into the Cockpit: In chapter 2, Asuka wants to drive a car for the first time. Shinji thinks it is not a good idea, but she argues if she is able to drive a Humongous Mecha, she is able to drive a car. Shortly after, she finds out that... nope. She is not.
  • Fan Art: Some fans drew extra fanart by this story and the sequel.
  • Fan-Created Offspring: The big twist in the story is the existence of Shinji and Asuka's Kid from the Future Aki.
  • Fiery Redhead: Asuka mellows out considerably in the post-TI chapters, but still retains this as part of her personality.
  • First-Episode Twist: Shinji and Asuka are a couple; and they have traveled back in time.
  • First Kiss: In Repeat, Shinji and Asuka redo his first kiss' scene, with their positions flipped (this time it is Shinji who does the goading and who pinches Asuka's nose). Right like many other moments of their relationship led to horrible misunderstandings and mutual heartache in the original timeline, they turn it into a heartwarming moment.
    • After they have both confessed their mutual feelings of love in chapter 4, yet shied away from each other for a few days afterwards, Asuka is the first to call out on the ridiculousness of their situation and to drag Shinji into a kiss. She decides it to be their first real kiss, conveniently considering that the peck Shinji gave her while she was sick and the aforementioned kissing disaster do not count as the both of them didn't get to enjoy it back then.
  • Fix Fic: Shinji and Asuka manage to get over their worst issues, get together and and go back to the past to save the world.
  • Foregone Conclusion:
    • A minor one at the end of chapter 6, the author makes it seem like Asuka has died from the strain of childbirth...about 4 years before she and Shinji get thrown back in time. She, of course, turns out to be fine a paragraph later.
    • Played straight in the otherwise heartwarming Chapter 8. Despite the happy times that Shinji and Asuka spent with their daughter, the audience already knows that Aki was erased from existence when the time line was rewound. This chapter (and chapter 6) also hints at another one. They're still the only people left on the planet, even after several years. Little Aki will grow up without any friends; and, what will happen to her once her parents are gone? Their happiness will not last forever, nor does the future look bright.
    • These are then averted (subverted?) when it turns out that Aki had been sent into the past as well, appearing a few days after Kaworu's death. Tears are shed as she's reunited with her parents, Aki has been given a chance to live a normal life, and they all finally earn their happy ending.
  • Foreshadowing: When the moment of Asuka and Rei's elevator conversation comes up in chapter 7, Asuka takes the initiative and tells Rei of the advice she got from her in the previous timeline to open her heart to make the EVA move, asking her if she does it herself. Rei replies that she mustn't. Two chapters later, we discover why (see Taking You with Me below).
  • Forgot I Couldn't Swim: In "Love", Asuka was swimming in a lake while Shinji was fishing. She tried to encourage him to go for a swim as well, but he said he couldn't swim. Suddenly, Asuka screamed that she was drowning, and Shinji got into the water unthinkingly. He paddled rather clumsily, but he managed to pull her out of the pond.
  • Fright-Induced Bunkmate: Happens when Asuka and Shinji are about to have sex, only for a small earthquake to hit, causing their daughter Aki to run into their room out of fear and ask to sleep with them.
  • Freud Was Right: "You know, we've both been 'thrown out' by our mothers. Wonder how people would interpret that."
  • Freudian Excuse Is No Excuse: At one point, Shinji calls Gendo out on blaming all of his actions -including abandoning his son- on the pain of losing his wife.
  • Funetik Aksent: Shinji's efforts to learn and speak German produce funny results. Asuka chuckles when he tells her "Ich leibe Sie" instead of "Ich liebe dich" (meaning "I love you")
  • Future Badass: Both Shinji and Asuka retain their combat experience, and given how they've lost most of their mental issues, are infinitely better at piloting.
  • Future Me Scares Me: Discussed. Asuka thinks her younger self would hate her since during her Character Development she forsook all what she had lived for during her childhood and became a very different person who does not mind showing her emotions, letting others close and loves being a wife and a mother. Shinji disagrees, though. But he thinks his younger self would be shocked and surprised at seeing him (since he had became more emotionally stable and less timid).


  • Gardening-Variety Weapon: Gardening tools are used to fend off wild animals once or twice in the After the End chapters.
  • Get A Hold Of Yourself Man: When Shinji is too depressed to take care of himself, Asuka delivers this trope almost word for word to Shinji in chapter 2, thankfully without the slapping.
  • Giant Equals Invincible: Conventional weaponry does nothing to Evas or Angels. When the army assaulted the Geofront Asuka's Humongous Mecha destroyed foot troops, entire tank battallions, VTOLs with insulting easiness whereas Shinji's giant robot protected her power cord with an impregnable barrier that no projectile could pierce through. It went on until the army gave up and deployed Seele's Humongous Mecha. Shortly before Asuka had said that the soldiers were not the real problem (since their enemy were the MP-Evas).
  • Gilligan Cut: From "I'm sure, as long as we (Aki and Asuka) have each other, there's nothing that could hurt us." to "Ah! Aki, you're hurting Mama!"
  • Girlish Pigtails: Asuka wore this hairstyle when she was young. When she grew up, though, she had to get her hair cut. She saw it how another aspect of her childhood fading.
  • Give Him a Normal Life: Shinji and Asuka often express this desire about their daughter Aki. In fact it is hinted that their wish for Aki having friends and a normal life was the cause of their trip back to the past. And in the epilogue and the sequel Aki-chan's Life they often say they want that their daughter have a normal life (they don't even want her finding out that they are time-travelers).
  • Glad-to-Be-Alive Sex: Misato and Kaji had a rather "emotional" reunion after the Final Battle.
  • Go Mad from the Isolation: In the beginning of chapter 12 Shinji and Asuka have been detained and shoved into separate cells. As he waited, pondering that it was driving him crazy being locked in that place with no way to know how long had passed and what had happened to Asuka, Shinji reflected on those cells -small, nearly empty, almost completely dark- were especifically built to drive someone crazy due to the feeling of isolation among other things.
  • Good Morning, Crono: Shinji and Asuka’s Peggy Sue adventures begin when they wake up and realize that they’ve gone back to the past.
  • Go Through Me: In an uncharacteristic display of protectiveness, Rei stands her ground against a JSSDF patrol to allow Aki to run and hide.
    Rei: (angrily) I WILL NOT ALLOW YOU TO HARM HER!
  • Good Parents: Against all odds, Shinji and Asuka become this, and they both lampshade it repeatedly.
  • Grammar Correction Gag: In chapter 8 Shinji says Asuka "Ich leibe Sie," (meaning to say "I love you"). He leans to kiss her but he stops because she is stifling a chuckle. Then she teaches him the correct words ("Ich liebe dich") and kisses him.
  • Gratuitous Japanese: It keeps "baka" and "hentai"... almost exclusively for Asuka insulting Shinji. It also keeps a grand total of one honorific when referring to Aki, which is mainly used to emphasize how adorable that particular character is.
  • Grave-Marking Scene:
    • In the After the End chapters, Shinji and Asuka visited the Red Sea –humanity’s collective grave- periodically.
    • In “Repeat”, Shinji and Gendo visited Yui’s grave. Shinji thought about dissuading his father from proceeding with his plans, but he realized right away that he’d be wasting his time, so he called his father out on abandoning him.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Asuka in The Second Try is pretty jealous. She strongly disliked Kaworu, partially because he lusted after Shinji. She didn't like Rei either because Shinji had strong feelings towards her, but she stopped being jealous of Rei because she realized that the blue-haired girl wasn’t a threat.
  • Grew a Spine: After Third Impact Shinji needs to man up in order to survive, help Asuka and later raise their daughter together. And he manages it, maturing and becoming a better and stronger person who'll defend his family at all costs. Threaten Asuka or Aki at your own risk.
  • Happily Married: Shinji and Asuka Ikari, though they don't tell anyone about their status.
  • Hard Work Hardly Works: In “Raise”, Asuka remembers what she could never catch up with Shinji in spite of working hard to become the best. She also realizes that it doesn’t bother or hurt her anymore.
  • Hates Being Alone: This was a big part of their personalities in the original series: they hated being hurt by other people but they also hated loneliness. At the same time, it was one of the hindrances to their relationship. Now they have finally got over their fear to each other, their fear to loneliness has intensified, and spending any lapse of time not knowing what has happened to each other drives them crazy.
  • Heartbroken Badass: When Unit-02 blew itself up during the Final Battle, Shinji believed that Asuka was dead. He was so heart-broken that he almost ended humanity again.
  • Held Gaze: Shinji and Asuka did it several times, such like in "repeat" before kissing.
  • Henpecked Husband:
    • Shinji is quite passive and Asuka very domineering. Most of the time, Asuka makes plans and handles everything necessary while Shinji follows her lead or makes whatever she commands. At one point after returning to the past, Touji thinks his best friend looks like a henpecked husband, not knowing how right he is.
      Man, how can a guy be that henpecked?
    • As seen in the sequel, Gendo's reply to anything what his wife said was: "Yes, Yui", "Of course, Yui", "Whatever you say, Yui".
  • Heroes Want Redheads: Shinji very much wants his redhead, gorgeous, Tsundere wife.
  • Hidden Depths: After meeting Aki, Rei shows herself to be quite the artist. Her pictures are pretty amazing, and she even got a letter from a gallery.
  • Hidden Heart of Gold: In the original timeline Asuka donned one to prevent people from getting emotionally closer to her. After the Third Impact she gradually got over the need to do so, but back in the past she is forced to reapply it to avoid suspicion. However she finds very hard and distressing -even childish- to play her old role.
  • High-School Sweethearts: Due to the complexities inherent to time-travel Shinji and Asuka are middle-schoolers... and are married, although no one else knows. After the end of the world they worked together to survive, fallen in love and got married... and then they were sent back in time, waking up in their teenager bodies. Before the Final Battle Shinji proposed to Asuka again (technically for first time) and she accepted. In the sequel they were planning their wedding.
  • Holding Hands: Asuka and Shinji often link hands to try to lend strength and reassure each other in private.
  • Hollywood Genetics: Lampshaded by the author in the notes for chapter 6. He says that it's "almost blasphemy that he didn't make Aki a chibi-Asuka".
  • Hot-Blooded: Even though Asuka mellowed a bit when she got older, and she's constantly depressed, she's still fiery, passionate and battle-hungry. When she charges an Angel, she's so furious and determined that she's scary.
  • Hopeless Suitor: Subverted. Asuka has to pretend that she's still a hopeless crush on Kaji, even though she's not interested in him anymore.
  • Humanoid Abomination:
    • Rei is a cloned human who acts as a vessel for the soul of an Eldritch Abomination. When Shinji and Asuka go back to the past and meet her again, they're unsettled because she always seemed strange, but they never doubted that she was human.
      There she was; that long-time enigma: cloned from remains of his mother; partial Angel; the one with the power to return every single human on the planet back to nothing. After seeing her for years only as that, in the tremendous form she had taken at the end, it seemed impossible to ever look at the delicate fourteen year old girl that was Rei Ayanami in the same way again.
    • Kaworu is another clone storing the soul of another alien Eldritch Abomination. Talking to him or being around him is unsettling because he looks human but he doesn't act or talk like one, and he blatantly tells that life, death, space, time... are meaningless concepts to him.
  • Humongous Mecha: The Evangelions and the Jet Alone.
  • Hypocritical Humor: Asuka has a habit of calling Shinji hentai or baka-hentai after they wind up in their younger bodies, mostly when she herself is aroused.
  • I Am Not Left-Handed: The MP-Eva series fight on an entirely different level of skill and tactics the second time around. Asuka posits that they were simply toying with her in the original timeline when she faced them alone with her battery already running down. Since they are confronted with both Units 01 and 02 at full strength in the new timeline, the MP-Evas don't hold anything back.
  • Idealized Sex: Subverted. Shinji and Asuka’s first time was awkward. Shinji hurt her when he entered her, and he tried to hold back his orgasm as long as possible because he didn’t want to deprive her of her own climax. Back in the past she told him that he owed her a better first time.
  • I Hate Past Me: Discussed. Asuka thinks her younger self would hate her since during her Character Development she forsook all what she had lived for during her childhood and became a very different person who does not mind showing her emotions, letting other close and loves being a wife and a mother. Shinji disagrees, stating she is being too hard on herself. Straight after he states he thinks his deeply-insecure, self-loathing, shy younger self would be shocked at seeing him... but he does not hate him since he knows why he was so full of insecurities and neurosis.
  • I Miss Mom:
    • Shinji and Asuka missed their mothers, never knowing that they were trapped in their Evangelions until it was too late. So their first synch test after time-travelling was very emotional because they could feel their presence and talk to them again.
    • After travelling to the past, Aki asks constantly where her parents have gone.
  • Important Haircut: Asuka got her hair cut after Aki's birth because her daughter kept pulling it. It felt pretty dramatic to her, since she had spent years taking care of it, but she felt better when Shinji said she looked like a mother.
  • I'm Taking Her Home with Me!: Rei Ayanami of all people ends up doing this after finding an adorable four year-old girl lost in the middle of Tokyo-3, though to her credit she had the sense to contact the authorities and try to find the child's parents first. It's just as well she did take the girl home, though, as she was Shinji and Asuka's Kid from the Future.
  • Intergenerational Friendship: It has one develop between 4 year old Aki and 14 year old Rei. This is especially interesting because the former technically hasn't been born yet when the two meet. And because she is also the child of Asuka and Shinji, therefore she's Rei's niece. Sorta.
  • Interrupted Intimacy: In “Raise”, Shinji and Asuka are about to make love at night when Aki opens their bedroom’s door. They stop instantly.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: All odd-numbered chapters are numbered from 12th to 17th to represent the Angel fought, while even-numbered chapters are named with a single verb based on its major theme.
  • In Love with Your Carnage: When Unit 01 burst out of Leliel, ripping the Angel apart as spilling blood, fluids and flesh chunks everywhere, everybody looked at the blood-drenched, roaring, berserker, demon-alike Humongous Mecha horrified... but Asuka. She was smirking as she stared at her husband tearing Leliel apart and coming back to her.
  • In Mysterious Ways: When Shinji complains that he and Asuka have failed to change the past, Kaworu points out that even the small changes they've made have improved the outcome, resulting in Toji playing a critical role in fighting back the MP-EVAs. It also seems likely Kaworu guided Rei and Aki into meeting, which was the catalyst for Rei refusing her role in Third Impact.
  • Inferiority Superiority Complex: During their wedding Shinji explains that he fell for Asuka, among other reasons, because he realized her arrogance was a façade to hide a vulnerable, terrified and lonely girl whom he wanted to help and protect.
  • Inner Monologue: Shinji and Asuka have plenty of these through the whole history where they reflect about their situation -having survived the end of the world only to being brought back to the past, their feelings, their relationship or each other.
  • Innocent Innuendo: Happens several times in the narration.
    • In chapter 3, Rei participates for the first time to a physical activity with Shinji and Asuka that leaves the three of them sweating (they're on a hiking trip).
    • In chapter 4, we get to see Shinji, some time after starting his relationship with Asuka, nervously facing her, wondering why he agreed to do it with her so early (Asuka is making him pass a test to check his progress in his medicine studies).
    • In chapter 6, one scene opens on Asuka moaning in delight and begging Shinji not to stop, even for changing positions (Shinji is massaging her feet which are sore from her pregnancy).
  • Innocently Insensitive: Misato makes a comment in "Repeat" about how Shinji and Asuka should be prepared when they stay home alone because it would be really inconvenient if Asuka got pregnant.
  • Insult of Endearment: Asuka still calls Shinji "baka" often enough that the term has almost become a pet name. To the point that when Aki says her first words, it's the second thing she utters after "Mama" (to Shinji's dismay and Asuka's amusement). It's also the only thing she can come up with when asked for her father's name by a police officer.
  • Intergenerational Friendship: Aki and Rei.
  • In Medias Res: A lot happens after that last scene of End of Evangelion, but that gets revealed later on. The story starts within a couple days of the battle of the Twelfth Angel.
  • Ironic Echo:
    • "Do not ask questions you don't really want to hear the answer to."
    • "Cry when you feel sad. Laugh when you're happy..." Asuka originally told this to Aki as a lesson about not hiding your feelings. After Shinji is absorbed by Unit 01, she tells herself this since she can't show her feelings. Due to the anachronic nature of the story, we actually hear the echo before the original line.
      Asuka: Who am I to ask for a promise that I can't keep myself?
  • "It" Is Dehumanizing: After Shinji discovers that she's pregnant, Asuka refers to their unborn child as a "thing" due to how much she didn't want to be a parent. She does change her tune soon afterwards, and makes a point to apologize to Aki shortly before the birth.


  • Jealous Parent: Asuka is the Temporary type. She really didn't want a kid, partially out of fear that it would ruin her relationship with Shinji. It was to the point that she tried to induce a miscarriage via starvation. Fortunately, seeing the first ultrasound awakened her maternal instinct and she was firmly in Good Parent territory by the time that Aki was born (though her jealous phase would come back to haunt her during her rematch with Arael).
  • Just Before the End: When they go back to the past, Shinji and Asuka are well aware of the incoming end of the world. At the beginning, Asuka is too depressed to make anything about it, but Shinji encourages him to try to avert it.
  • Just Toying with Them: When the MP-EVAs show themselves to be tougher to bring down than expected, it dawns to Asuka that this is most likely the reason why she seemed to slaughter them so easily the first time around. Although Shinji expresses doubts about it, this realization only serves to further fuel her Roaring Rampage of Revenge.
  • Karmic Death: Chairman Keel of SEELE. Most evil man in the series. Has been manipulating things behind the scenes probably since he was a young man. Cooked up Second Impact and the plan for his version of Third Impact to essentially escape death, which he's afraid of. Dies of a heart attack off-screen when the MP-EVAs start dropping for real.
  • Kid from the Future: Aki gets sent back in time about a day before SEELE launches their attack on NERV. Her parents were already aware of her existence, having been sent back in time themselves.
  • Kid Hero: Played straight with fourteen-year-old Rei and Touji. Subverted with Shinji and Asuka, since due to time-travel shenanigans, they’re physically teenagers but they’re mentally adults.
  • Kid Hero All Grown-Up: Due to the complexities inherent to time-travel Shinji and Asuka are in their early twenties.
  • The Kid with the Remote Control: One of the consequences of being stuck in the past is Shinji and Asuka know now they were selected to be Evangelion pilots -even if they were children- because their mothers’ souls are locked inside their robots. That knowledge should allow them a better synch with their machines, but they can not display it because they do not want people finding out about the time-travelling bit.
  • Knight in Sour Armor: Asuka is delighted to save the world after it took everything from her again and then reset itself. She's determined to try and save it anyway.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: People that started to read the fic after its completion most likely have got spoiled that Shinji and Asuka had a daughter in the future.
  • Late to the Punchline: The narration of chapter 11 mentions that it took Hikari a while to realize what Asuka meant by "You're watching our pet, we'll watch yours!" (PenPen and Toji respectively). To be fair, she was in something of a daze after having given Toji a goodbye kiss in full view of all her friends.
  • Latex Space Suit: In “Repeat” Shinji and Asuka wear their plugsuits for first time in years. Asuka noted that she used to wear her skintight pilot suit with pride, but it feels like a prison, now.
    It was even worse than when she had first put her old school uniform on again. This pressurized red outfit that tightly encased her skin; she used to wear it proudly as a symbol of her rank and status as pilot, but now it just reminded her of a life she had been glad to have left behind when she had finally been able to. When she had pushed the button that caused the suit to contract around her until there was no interfering air between her body and the conductive material, she had almost felt imprisoned by it.
  • Law of Inverse Fertility: Played both straight and averted. Asuka didn't want to have a baby, even to the point where she was starving herself in a misguided attempt to induce a miscarriage (which, Shinji later noted, put her in more danger than the baby). However, once she sees the first ultrasound that changes. The aversion comes with Aki being born alive and healthy.
  • Leave Me Alone!: At the beginning of chapter 4, Asuka tries to drive Shinji away, and she screams “Leave me alone!” When he says “No”, though, she asks if he promises never leaving her.
  • Lighter and Softer: Although the story has dark and tear-jerking moments, it's happier than canon. Shinji and Asuka learn to deal with their psychological issues, become parents, and the world is saved.
  • Like an Old Married Couple: -Hilariously- inverted. After being told the secret, Misato mutters Shinji and Asuka used to bicker Like an Old Married Couple before, but now that they ARE one, they act like new-found lovebirds. Shinji and Asuka explain that is -partially- because they are hormone-driven teenagers again... without Belligerent Sexual Tension separating them.
    • The "Hey, look, the newlyweds are fighting!" line from Toji is revisited, and Shinji and Asuka both try hard to act like they did the first time, except Toji notices that the two of them are having a hard time containing their laughter.
  • Little "No": Asuka to Shinji in "love": "HATE ME! LEAVE ME! KILL ME!". Shinji's answer? "No..."
    • This actually mirrors their scene during instrumentality (you know, that scene), with their positions swapped. However, this time it ends with a heartwarming moment.
  • Living Emotional Crutch: Shinji and Asuka are this for each other. It becomes especially obvious in chapter 5.
  • Living Prop: Nicely averted unlike the typical Babies Ever After plot, Aki is a character in her own right, with lots of personality. For example: She's energetic and cheerful, quite bright, prefers to wear clothes that are too big for her, loves to draw, and HATES shoes. In fact, one of the main reasons this fic is so well known is because of Aki's strong characterzation the interactions with her parents. This was so popular that it was elevated to the foucs of the Sequel Comic.
  • Locked Out of the Loop: When they return to the past, Shinji wants to tell Misato everything, but Asuka argues that she'll not believe them or she'll believe them but she'll get too worried or cautious, so they keep their time-travelling status from her for a while.
    "What about Misato?" he carefully tried again eventually. "We could tell her at least."
    But Asuka shook her head before he even finished formulating his idea. "She already cares more for us than it's good for someone in her position," she mumbled. "If she were to know what we're going to endure in the upcoming fights, she might try to find some way to keep us out of them or at least somewhat safe, which would most likely just make them end up for the worse."
  • Lonely Doll Girl: Strongly hinted. Being the child of the last two humans left alive on Earth after Third Impact, Aki Ikari doesn't really have anyone to talk to except her parents and her ragdoll Kiko. Mercifully averted after the events of the last chapter. While not in the same way, this also applies to Asuka afer the jump back in time, as the doll becomes her only memento of Aki.
  • Longing Look: Played tragically. Asuka and Shinji can't let anyone knows they are together, so in public they can't support at each other physically -not matter how depressed or glum one of them is-, and they have to resort to throw stealth, longing glances at each other.
  • Long Last Look: After surviving the end of the world, Shinji and Asuka decide to move out of Misato's apartment. After packing all their things, Shinji glanced around for the last time, feeling like they were leaving forever.
  • Love Confession: In chapter "Love" Asuka argued with Shinji about him being unable tell someone how he feels but always waiting for someone showing kindness to him, and being unable to see there is someone loves him honestly if that person is unable to give the first step. During the next days she constantly ruminates over her words, pondering she is just like him. Finally, as they are sleeping in the same bed, she tells:
    Asuka:"You... [...] you know that I love you, don't you?"
    Shinji:"I know. As sure as I love you too..."
  • Love Epiphany: During chapter 4 "Love", Shinji and Asuka realized their feelings gradually. It was during a Kaworu-related argument that Asuka finally admitted to herself that she loved him.
  • Love Hurts: In chapter 4 "Love" Shinji told Asuka that Instrumentality had taught him that you can not to experience love and happines without taking the risk to feel pain and loneliness too. Both of them choose taking a chance and get together and later have a child. Later they got flung back to the past without Aki where they had to cope with their daughter's disappearance and the fear to lose each other again during the Angel War. When Shinji got swallowed by Leliel and later absorbed into Unit 01 Asuka was freaking out, feeling alone and frightened of losing him again. Later Shinji believed the MP-Evas had killed Asuka again and he could not stand the pain. He very nearly set Third Impact again.
  • Love Interest: Shinji and Asuka are each other's love interest.
  • Lovely Angels: After returning to the past Asuka no loger is jealous of Rei and afraid of being replaced, so they fight together better. They teamed up successfully against Bardiel and fought coordinately against Zeruel (Asuka fought it hand to hand as Rei provided cover fire).
  • Love Makes You Evil: Gendo is the obvious example, but... Shinji caused Third Impact because Asuka rejected him ("No one loves me, so everyone must die"). In the altered timeline, he almost caused the Third Impact again because he believed Asuka was dead.
    Yui: Is it okay now?
    Shinji: Yeah. She's fine. That's all that matters to me.
  • Loving a Shadow: After maturing a bit, Asuka admits to Shinji and herself that she didn't really love Kaji. She had a "delusional crush" on him because he represented the adult world that she wanted to be a part of. In a scene, while she sleeps with Shinji, Asuka wonders about the difference between being in love and thinking you're in love.
    But what if there weren't other people? Who could judge if you were in love or if you'd just experience a crush on someone; if you just think you are in love?
  • Luminescent Blush: Invoked. Shinji used to blush furiously when he was a teenager. When he doesn't turn red after Misato has said something highly embarrassing, his guardian has her first clue that something is amiss.


  • Madness Mantra: Asuka uttered one (the same that she used against the MP-EVAs in the OTL, no less) when Gendo interrogated her about Aki and then taunted her with her speech not being very motherly:
    Asuka:"You bastard! You don't know anything about her! You have no right to talk about her! I swear, if you do as much as to say her name once more, I'll kill you!"
    Gendo:"Kill me? You don't seem to be in any position to make death threats. That aside... [...] That is not a very motherly way to talk..."
    Asuka:"You... I'll kill you. I'll kill you. I'll kill you! I'll kill you! I'LL K-agh... y-y..."
  • Make-Out Kids: After coming clean about being time-travelers, Shinji and Asuka do not need to hide their relationship from Misato; hence, they are constantly touching each other, even during breakfast. Asuka claims "being a hormone-driven teenager again sure helps".
  • Making Love in All the Wrong Places:
    • In the Chapter 4 Omake, Asuka and Shinji have their honeymoon on the beach overlooking the LCL sea (which depending on your definition, may count as exhibitionism).
    Asuka: Well, that's the good thing of being all alone in the world: You can do it wherever you want, without the risk of being seen by anyone!
    • There's also a case of Must Not Die a Virgin right before the final battle, where Asuka and Shinji have sex in NERV's changing room.
  • Mama Bear: Asuka is fiercely protective of her post-Third-Impact family (both Aki and Shinji), to the point that, in "The Final", she made an attempt to strangle Gendo when he tried to interrogate her about them (and she came damn near close to succeeding; Gendo even seemed to be a bit unnerved). She also threatened Kaworu to stay away from Shinji, knowing full well what he was.
  • Mandatory Motherhood: Asuka and Shinji really didn't want to have children due to the experiences with their own parents, but they didn't have a choice after Asuka got pregnant due to (among other things) lacking a safe method for abortion.
  • Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: Shinji and Asuka are married. She’s bold and straightforward, and he quiet and non-confrontational. During the After the End section of the story, Asuka took care of physical chores like farming and maintaining their equipment as Shinji was tasked with the household chores and medical care. Asuka usually drove the two of them, made plans and handled everything while he calmed her down when she was angry or reassured her when she was depressed. This can also be seen in how they act as parents towards Aki, with Asuka being more stern and Shinji more accommodating. She also loves fighting while he loathes it.
  • The Matchmaker:
    • Shinji and Asuka act as this for Hikari and Toji.
    • Hikari thinks she's acting as this for Asuka and Shinji, which they (and the audience) find hilariously ironic.
    Asuka: ...with the way she's acting I'm not even sure if she really understands that it's not just some teenage crush.
    Shinji: Well, she still is a rather normal teenager after all.
  • Meaningful Echo: "Smile when you're happy, cry when you're sad..."
    "and do both when you're happier than you've ever been."`
  • Meet the In-Laws: In chapter 7, Shinji got to talk to his wife's stepmother for first time. Later on, in the sequel Shinji and Asuka were getting ready to meet her parents.
  • The Men in Black: NERV’s Section-2 security detail look and act like this. One of their actions was arresting Shinji and Asuka after Kaworu's death.
  • Mental Time Travel: After spending over six years surviving in the post-Third Impact world, Shinji and Asuka wake up one morning to find that mankind has returned, they are in their younger bodies and living in Misato's apartment again, and only they have any memories of what has happened, and what is happening again. Upon waking up, Shinji right away notices his body feels "different", and among other things, his face skin is soft again.
  • Mercy Kill: After the 16th Angel, Shinji and Misato stop Ritsuko from activating the control that destroys the soulless Rei clones in the Dummy Plug system, so Rei does it herself.
    Rei: These are not human beings. Their official purpose is to serve as core for the Dummy Plug system, but even that is only secondary. As Dr Akagi explained, they are mere vessels to hold my soul. That was the only reason they were created for, just like the body I possess now and the ones before. Without a soul, they can not become aware of their feelings. They notice the feel of the warm LCL around them, of this glass holding them; they can see us, the world outside of theirs. But... it does not matter to them. All they are doing is existing, blissfully unaware of everything. They cannot understand the difference between pain and joy. They do not know the vast variety of human emotions. They do not feel hope or fear for the future. I always wondered whether to pity or to envy them. (pushes the button)
    Shinji: Rei... What have you done?
    Rei: I have... set them free...
  • Metaphorical Marriage: Asuka and Shinji have the full ceremony complete with exchanging rings and vows, but lacked anyone to officiate or witness it due to them being the only two people alive in a post-Third Impact world (though one could say that they technically had the entire human race as their witnesses due to getting married next to the LCL sea). They're planning on having an official wedding by the time of the epilogue.
  • Mildly Military: Played with. NERV is a semi-military organization, but Misato is very permissive with her subordinates despite of being a commanding officer. Gendo criticized her behavior when Shinji went against his orders.
  • Mind Rape: Asuka once again suffers this at the hands of the 15th angel, but this time it's even worse. Since Asuka and Shinji have long since gotten over their inner demons, she thinks it'll be easier to deal with this time. So Arael targets the knowledge that her 4 year old daughter Aki is alone in a post-apocalyptic future and there's nothing she can do about it. Even worse, it has a mental version of Aki remind her that she had originally tried to kill her in-utero via starvation. If Shinji hadn't been able to talk with her during all of this, she probably would have suffered another complete emotional breakdown.
  • Mind Screw:
    • In the author's own words, it wouldn't be Evangelion without it. This includes a bizarre and slightly disturbing rehash of the Gainax Ending of Neon Genesis Evangelion in chapter four, "love."
    • Another minor one occurs in "end" with Shinji wondering how Aki made it back from the future. However as Asuka puts it: "Tell you what, Shinji," a wide grin sprawled over her face while they walked up the stairs. "I don't give a damn. She's back and that's all that matters to me."
  • Missing Mom: Shinji and Asuka lost their mothers when they were four. When they return to the past and have the chance to talk to their mothers again after so many years, it's a very emotional moment for them.
  • Mistaken for Gay: Kaworu by Toji (see Not That There's Anything Wrong with That below). Kaworu is genuinely clueless about what Toji was implying but finds his reaction "very interesting" nonetheless.
  • Mistreatment-Induced Betrayal: Shinji and Asuka lost their mothers, were abandoned by their fathers, were forced to fight a war against Eldritch Abominations and died in combat before they were fifteen, outlived The End of the World as We Know It and had to survive in the wastes left after the Third Impact. Then they got flung back in time, and schemed to ruin the plans of their superiors.
  • Moe Couplet: Rei Ayanami of all girls and Aki, a lost child she finds wandering the streets of Tokyo-3 and ends up taking home with her. That kid's Cuteness Proximity Field is practically a superpower! Rei carries on with this trope in the sequel In addition to being Aki's Cool Aunt, seeing as she's Shinji and Asuka's Kid from the Future.
  • Motherly Scientist: Subverted with Ritsuko. She treats the pilots coldly and regards Rei as something less than human, and she even tried to destroy Rei’s spare bodies. However, after Rei covers up for her when Gendo questioned her, Ritsuko started treating the children a bit better.
  • Mundane Luxury: Aki gets excited when Rei takes her to a small ramen shop and finds out that they have meat, something she'd previously only eaten during special occasions.
  • Must Not Die a Virgin: Shinji and Asuka have their "second first time" in NERV's locker rooms, the night before their final battle against the JSSDF and SEELE's MP-EVAs.
  • My God, What Have I Done?:
    • Shinji and Asuka are at a lake with Asuka swimming in it. Trying to get Shinji to swim (he admits he can't) she pretends to drown, making him panic and jump in to save her. She takes a look at his face and realizes that she scared him shitless and, for a brief instant, made him think he was going to watch her die and be the last human alive in a post-Third Impact world.
    • Asuka has this reaction when she ends up damaging Aki's doll and scaring her away due to a pediophobia induced panic attack.
  • My Secret Pregnancy: Due to her mess of insecurities, Asuka was rather freaked out when she discovered she was pregnant and had tried to hide it from Shinji (she even went as far as to starve herself in a misguided attempt to induce a miscarriage). He only found out after a rat got into their trash and he stumbled onto a positive pregnancy test Asuka tried to hide. To say he was surprised would have been an understatement.
  • Negative Space Wedgie: Leliel, a black-and-white-striped floating sphere whose shadow is an alternate dimension and its true body, shows up in the first episode fittingly named after it. Shinji intentionally falls inside it and tries ripping it apart from within like his mother did the first time around, but he has no idea of how she did it, so he has to wait till Yui decides to go berserker.
  • Nerves of Steel: Gendo is almost always calm, not matter that situation. He only got upset and agitated after Shinji warned him that he would never get what he wanted.
  • Never Say That Again: Asuka threatens to murder Gendo when he mentions Aki's name, even attempting to strangle him when pushes her further.
  • New Baby Episode: This story actually devotes two chapters to this regarding Shinji and Asuka's daughter Aki, one (titled "bear") covering the pregnancy til birth and the other (titled "raise") dealing with their infancy and early childhood.
  • Newhart Phonecall: Asuka calls her stepmother to try and make peace with her prior to fighting Arael.
    Asuka: "Hallo... M-Mama... What, am I not allowed to call you that? Yeah, maybe it's a little... really, never? Well... quite a lot happened since the last time we talked and – no, that's not a reproach, I could have called as well. It's just... I- I wanted to say sorry, okay? I've never been very easy on you, even though you tried to be nice to me. And it's not that I didn't like you, it was just... well, because you're not my real mother. That wasn't fair to you, I know, but I hope you can understand... Hello? You're still there?... Yes, of course it's really me! Ye- who?... Oh yes, that's him... He's okay I guess."
  • Nice Guy: Shinji thinks of himself as a throwaway, pathetic human being whose weakness and inability to deal with people and loneliness led to the extinction of humanity. According his wife, he’s one of the kindest, most compassionate persons she’s ever known.
    He often said he was just selfish, wanting everyone to like him, and that's what she had thought for a long while herself. But compared with others, including herself, he was, even with that motive in mind, the most caring and compassionate person she knew.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Asuka and Shinji lived for a while in a barren world because they were unknowingly furthering a "wipe humanity out" scheme when they were fighting alien monsters... and because Shinji was sick of everything. In the fourth chapter, Shinji states that all of humanity is gone because of him. Later on, Asuka and he admit that they were part of the trouble in the original timeline just so much like everything else.
  • Nightmare Sequence: In “Survive” and “Love” Shinji and Asuka have several nightmares where they revive the events of Instrumentality.
  • Non-Action Big Bad: Gendo was the Big Bad, Manipulative Bastard and The Chess Master who turned everyone into his unwitting pawns. Asuka almost killed him with her bare hands. Yes, he was nearly strangled to death by an angry teenager.
  • No Range Like Point-Blank Range: When Zeruel struck, Asuka was armed with a gun, but rather shooting him she sprinted towards Zeruel to fight at close quarters because she knew that shooting from far would do nothing.
  • No Social Skills: Shinji and Asuka had no social skills whatsoever. Ironically, they got better at socializing after all remaining humans were gone.
  • Not So Stoic: Kaworu's aura of unflappable calm and serenity shattered when Asuka took him by surprise using her Unit-02 which he thought he was controlling. He was so shocked that he actually screamed.
  • Not What It Looks Like:
    • Shinji and Asuka don't want people suspecting that they are timetravelers and Happily Married. They try and pretend that they are not together but they are lousy actors, and every time they are caught making out or believe they have been caught or let slip that they are together they swear that "this is not what it looks like" and "it is not what you are thinking".
    • In chapter 5, after the events of the 14th, Misato catches Shinji and Asuka during a moment of passion. Of course, it's exactly what it looks like, but Shinji tries to invoke this trope anyways. He need not have worried, however, as Misato was in the know by that point.
      "Uh... Mi... Misato!" he stuttered, trying to get the surprisingly calm redhead off him. "It... it's not what it looks like!"
  • No Periods, Period: Averted. Asuka's monthly cycle is brought up once or twice in the story. Her lack of periods is how she figured out she was pregnant.
  • "Not So Different" Remark:
    • At the last scene, Shinji admits he finally understands his father a bit, since when he thought Asuka was dead he almost started the Instrumentality right on the spot. And he would have done if Asuka would have not reached him in time.
    • Kaworu taunts Asuka stating maybe she knows him better than she admits.
  • Not That There's Anything Wrong with That: Toji invokes the trope when he -very awkwardly- tries to ask Kaworu if he is gay:
    Toji: Hey, you know... the way you're moving and talking... and that smiling... you're not... I mean not that I'd have anything against it... but still...
    Kaworu: I am afraid I do not know what you are referring to.
    Toji: Yeah, sure, never mind.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Shinji and Asuka pretend they are dumb, oblivious and ignorant to everything that is happening around them so Gendo does not suspect they are time travelers are plotting to ruin his and Seele's plans.
  • Oblivious to Hints: Subverted. Hikari thinks that Shinji is oblivious to all hints Asuka drops, but he’s only pretending to not see them because no one can know that he and Asuka got together.
  • Oblivious to Love: Subverted. Everyone think Shinji and Asuka are oblivious to each other's feelings... but in reality they not only are well-aware but also they got married before returning to the past. But since they don't want anybody finds out they are time-travellers, they pretend they are blind to each other's feelings.
  • Official Couple:
    • Shinji and Asuka.
    • Koichi Yamadera and his wife in this story and the sequel Aki-chan's Life. They were the owners of the market-garden where Shinji and Asuka lived in the post-Impact world. After going back to the past, Shinji and Asuka visited them twice, and eventually they offered selling their old house to the pair of time-travelers.
  • Official Kiss: In episode 4 "Love", after dancing around each other for a long time as they lived together in the post-Apocalypse world, Shinji and Asuka kissed in their house's kitchen.
  • Offing the Offspring: Asuka attempted to induce a miscarriage via starvation after she got pregnant (something that Shinji noted was more dangerous to her than the baby), but she changed her tune after the first ultrasound. This would come back to haunt her during the Mind Rape scene.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • From the audience when they learn that Gendo and Fuyutsuki learn something they shouldn't have after the Arael fight.
    • Shinji has this expression when several Section-2 agents arrest him, and he realizes his father has figured out his and Asuka's secret.
    • The members of SEELE also display this expression when the first MP-EVA is completely destroyed. The shock is even fatal in Keel Lorenz's case.
  • Older Than They Look: Due to time-travel, Shinji and Asuka look teenagers, but they're in their early twenties.
  • Older and Wiser: Shinji and Asuka, after they return to the past, are mentally in their early 20's. However, they have the emotional maturity of a person at least 10 years older than that.
  • Old Flame: Misato and Kaji were rekindling their relationship in the first chapter, despite of Misato declaring that they were NOT together again. In the epilogue it’s revealed that Misato is expecting his baby.
  • One-Man Army: Before the Final Battle Shinji was reluctant to fight soldiers and Asuka reassured him, saying he only needed protecting her power cable, since that army was not a trouble to them.
  • One-Steve Limit: See Dead Guy Junior above.
  • Orphan's Ordeal: Shinji and Asuka suffered a great deal because their mothers died. They needed to get over that trauma in order to becoming good parents to Aki.
  • Other Me Annoys Me: Discussed in "Repeat". Asuka thinks her younger self would hate her for forsaking all what she had lived for since she was four. Shinji disagrees, stating she is being too hard on herself, and off-handily mutters his younger self would surely be shocked at him.
  • Out-of-Character Moment: A rather important plot point revolves around Shinji and Asuka trying to act like their old selves so as to not arouse suspicion. However, they are not the most convincing actors and most of their friends note that they are acting odd (Asuka is bad at hiding her emotions, while Shinji sometimes forgets to stay in character). Rei pretty much spells it out in chapter 3 in a conversation with Toji.
    Rei: [Shinji] is acting different lately. Soryu as well. Both have improved their social skills. Ikari is not as timid in the presence of other people. Soryu's aggressiveness has calmed down enough to accept the presence of people she had declared to hate, including myself. However, most of the time, they are trying to convince everyone that these changes are not existent. They also seem to possess a greater knowledge than before.
    • The only reason they manage to keep the facade up is because no one would suspect that they were actually a couple, much less the other absurdities of their story (you know, with the whole End of the world and time travel bit)


  • Panicky Expectant Father: Shinji displays this in "bear", especially in his last pregnancy log where he expresses his worries and doubts about having to take care of the delivery by himself despite learning all he could on the subject, and when he rushes Asuka to the hospital when her contractions begin. During the delivery proper however, he does his best to keep his panic in check and make sure that both mother and baby are all right.
  • Papa Wolf: Shinji, like his wife Asuka, is very protective of his post-Third-Impact family, though he keeps his cool better than Asuka...most of the time. Anyway hurt her or their daughter Aki... And. You. Will. Die. You'll not even see it coming. The MP-Evas learnt this the hard way.
  • Parental Abandonment:
    • Gendo abandoned Shinji when he was four. As far as Asuka –who was also abandoned by her father right after her mother’s funeral-, is concerned, Gendo has no right to talk about his granddaughter after abandoning Shinji.
    • Later on, Shinji stated that Gendo never understood that you can love another people only because they’re related to you.
  • Parental Favoritism: Subverted. Asuka thought that Shinji was Misato's favorite, but during “Love” she admits that maybe she misunderstood the situation.
  • Parental Hypocrisy: Asuka used to tell her daughter “Smile when you’re happy, cry when you’re sad”. However, when Shinji merges with Unit-01, she can’t show grief because she has to keep her façade. So, she sees herself as a hypocritical mother.
  • Parental Neglect: During Instrumentality, Asuka states that she is resented with Misato because she neglected her when she was hurting and abandoned her when Asuka needed her the most.
  • Parental Obliviousness: Shinji and Asuka kept their relationship and their time-traveler status from Misato for months.
  • Parental Substitute: Misato had been Asuka's caretaker in Germany and later Kaji replaced her. Later Misato was both Shinji and Asuka's guardian. In the After the End episodes Asuka tells Shinji how her guardians had constantly changed back in her homeland.
    "After my mother died, I was practically raised by NERV. Despite living with them, my father never really cared much about me, and my stepmother was 'almost afraid of me', as she said it. So I was mostly in custody by someone from NERV; send from one guardian to another. But those were the same; only when I got good grades or even more so when I was good in training, I got praise. Even Misato wasn't much better..."
    "Yes, don't you remember? She had been my guardian awhile once before. Looking back, I'd say she most likely still had her own problems dwelling on her mind, but I guess it were those differences between her behavior then and when I came here that made me think she preferred you." Shinji nodded understanding, but didn't interrupt her.
  • Peggy Sue: Deconstructed when it turns out that Shinji and Asuka had a child who was erased from existence. Reconstructed when Kaworu, who was behind the whole plot, took her at the same time he pulled Shinji and Asuka. He just made it so she appeared after it was all over.
  • People Jars: Rei's clones are shown floating in their “aquarium” right after Armisael’s defeat.
  • Person of Mass Destruction: Shinji almost ends humanity… twice.
  • Pitbull Dates Puppy: Subverted. Everyone thinks Shinji and Asuka’s relationship is this because Shinji is wimpy and meek and Asuka is harsh and aggressive. In reality their relationship got over that phase several years ago, but they pretend otherwise in order to keep their time-travelling status secret.
  • Playing Sick: Asuka plays sick right after returning to the past. Neither Shinji nor she are ready to go to school and face their classmates, so Shinji tells Misato that Asuka isn’t feeling well –which is actually true- and he wants to stay with her. Misato buys it.
  • Playing Possum: Kaji pretended to be dead after getting shot by a SEELE’s henchman.
  • Please, Don't Leave Me: Inverted and after played straight in chapter 4. Asuka does not want to be alone, but she feels that she needs to push Shinji away so she yells at him: "HATE ME! LEAVE ME! KILL ME!". When he refuses her resolution crumbles down, she hugs him and asks him if he promises not leaving her.
  • Post-Kiss Catatonia: This happens to Toji when Hikari gave him a kiss before the civilian evacuation. By the time Shinji and Asuka went home, he still hadn't moved an inch.
  • Pre-Climax Climax: Shinji and Asuka spent together in NERV's locker room the night before their Final Battle against the JSSDF and SEELE's MP-Evas.
  • Prefers Going Barefoot: Aki hates wearing shoes. Since she inherited her mother's stubbornness, her parents gave trying to force the issue unless it was necessary (such as dropping her off for Kindergarten; Aki was not happy about this)
  • Present Absence: Aki has a very large influence on the overall story, but they're only physically present in two chapters.
  • Primal Scene: In “Raise”, Aki can’t sleep at night so she rises, goes to her parents’ room and opens the door right when they’re making love. Subverted because she had no idea what they were doing.
  • Quit Your Whining: Asuka preemptively snaps Shinji out of his breakdown in chapter 2, telling him to get a grip so they can focus on their survival.
    • After the fight with the 16th Angel, when Misato tries to comfort a distraught Shinji who's blaming himself for being unable to prevent the death of Rei, she gets rudely interrupted by Asuka. At first she mistakes it for a display of No Sympathy she had been used to from the old Asuka, until she hears her berating him for writing Rei off so hastily. Asuka then argues that the new Rei may still be the same as the one they know. She's right.
  • Rage Breaking Point: Having been sent back in time, Shinji has been suppressing rage at his asshole father and SEELE for the stuff that went down in End of Evangelion. He also keeps calm even though him and Asuka resolved their issues, got married and had a child after Third Impact but lost that when both went back in time. Shinji then watches Eva-02 (piloted by Asuka, again) blow up. Shinji becomes Death incarnate and mows down an army of Evas before almost causing Third Impact. He snaps out of it, barely, when Asuka finally draws his attention to the fact she bailed out in time.
  • Ready for Lovemaking: The night before the final battle, Asuka asks Shinji to stay with her, unbuttoning her gown so there is no chance of Shinji getting confused.
    Stopped by her quiet call, he looked back to hear what she had on her mind. She let him wait though. Her eyes downcast, she was apparently contemplating whether or not she really wanted to say what was on her mind.
    "Would... would you stay here for the night... with me?" She didn't leave much doubt to the deeper meaning of her request, exposing her chest a little more than it already was.
    Shinji swallowed hard as he slowly walked back to her. Technically, it was hardly their first time, but it had been so long that it almost felt like it.
  • Recruit Teenagers with Attitude: Played straight with Rei, who is a fourteen-year-old mecha pilot. Subverted with Shinji and Asuka. Everyone believes that they're teenagers, but due to time-travel shenanigans, they are twenty-one.
  • Recursive Fanfiction: Other than the official fancomic sequel, it has another fancomic made by a fan. And a non-official crossoverwith Advice and Trust. And a series of short stories. And more.
  • Red Is Heroic: Asuka, as always, wears red and is a mecha pilot.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Asuka is the Red to Shinji's Blue. Although she's calmer and he's less timid due to their increased maturity, she's still daring, bold and passionate whereas he tries to be a calming, pacifying influence.
  • Relationship Reveal: After several scenes, it’s revealed that Shinji and Asuka are together.
  • Relationship-Salvaging Disaster: Shinji and Asuka had spent the entire show unable to admit to themselves and each other their feelings. Their relationship got worse and as a result of it they were unable to prevent the demise of everyone in the world but them. The end of the world forced them to carry with only each other, living and working together. In the process they not only matured but also learnt to open up to each other and got together and eventually married.
  • Relationship Upgrade: Given the mind-numbing complexities of time-travel, we see Shinji and Asuka like a couple BEFORE we see the upgrade. It happens in chapter 4, "love". After a heated Kaworu-related argument, Asuka finally musters the courage to confess her feelings to Shinji. Naturally he tells her that reciprocates.
  • Retail Therapy: Invoked when Asuka angrily explains Rei that the point of going shopping and buying clothes isn't sufficiency but making yourself feel better.
    Misato: Ah, hello Rei. What brings you here?
    Rei: I am in need of new socks.
    Asuka: Figures. The devil will probably visit the Arctic to spend a holiday in the warmth before you'd buy yourself some new outfit.
    Rei: The clothes that were supplied by the school are sufficient for me.
    Asuka: Sufficient, sufficient. This is not a matter of sufficiency. You should do it to feel more comfortable, to show the world that you have another life than school and duty. And most importantly to make you feel better!
  • Ret-Gone: One of the things Asuka and Shinji have to deal with is coping with the loss of their old life. Which includes the loss of their daughter. Until it turns out that she was sent back in time as well, just to a later date.
  • The Reveal:
    • In chapter 5, Shinji and Asuka reveal that before going back to the past, they had a child. And since she hasn't followed them to the past, she's gone now.
    • In the second-to-last chapter, Kaworu reveals that he was the one sent Shinji and Asuka back to the past, and then he hints that their daughter has been sent back too, and they'll meet her again very soon.
  • Ripple-Effect-Proof Memory: Shinji, Asuka and Aki returned to the past with their memories intact.


  • Saying Too Much: An interesting version. In Chapter 5, after the battle with the 14th angel, Misato finds (a little too late) an "anonymous" note from Shinji, meant to warn her about EVA-03 being possessed by the 13th angel... That he had written out by hand. She, of course, recognizes his handwriting, and a quick peek at his schoolwork confirms that he wrote it. She then remembers his and Asuka's odd behavior, and realizes that Asuka may know something about the letter. When she confronts Asuka, who is extremely distraught at the time (for very good reasons), Asuka breaks down and lets the facade drop.
  • Scary Flashlight Face: Asuka makes one to have a laugh at Shinji's expense during the hospital generator scene of "survive".
  • Science-Fiction Fanfic: It features humongous mechas, time-travel…
  • Secret Relationship: Merely the tip of the iceberg. In a nutshell, Shinji and Asuka are time-travelers trying to Set Right What Once Went Wrong, so that they have to hide that they are together, they are actually Happily Married and they got even a daughter. The Reveal was really something to behold.
  • Set Right What Once Went Wrong: After surviving on their own in the post-TI world Shinji and Asuka wake up one day and find they have traveled back in time. Shinji quickly thinks of looking for some way to prevent The End of the World as We Know It, but Asuka was too depressed to try at the beginning, and he needed to convince her.
  • She Is Not My Girlfriend:
    • In order to keep the Masquerade, Asuka is forced to declare that Shinji isn't her boyfriend, even though they're married.
    • According Misato, she and Kaji haven't got back together. And they are NOT dating. They are merely hanging out together.
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: Shinji and Asuka were this after the Angel War and Third Impact. After the End they had to mature and work together to survive and they got better.
  • Shipper on Deck:
    • Misato is a Shinji/Asuka shipper. Ironically she doesn’t know they got together.
    • Hikari tries to hint Shinji that Asuka likes him. Ironically she doesn’t know that he’s quite aware of it.
    • Shinji and Asuka ship Touji and Hikari, and they secretly ship Misato and Kaji.
  • Ship Tease: Plenty tease between Shinji and Asuka since the first scene where Shinji hugs her when she's upset, even though he's risking to blow their cover.
  • Silly Simian: Subverted. Aki thought that monkeys were cute and funny. So did their parents... until three monkeys tried to kidnap their daughter.
  • Single Woman Seeks Good Man: Asuka fell in love with and got married to Shinji who was "the most caring and compassionate person she knew."
  • Sinister Geometry: Leliel was a floating sphere. Armisael was a kind of solid energy whip.
  • Skipping School: In “Repeat”, when Asuka has apparently gotten sick and Shinji wants to stay at home with her, Misato jokingly asks if they are trying to skip school.
  • Sleep Cute: Quite a few times in chapter 4. Aki as well in chapter 8, where she prevents her father from even getting up by sleeping on top of his chest.
  • So Proud of You:
    • During her Mind Rape, Asuka sees a vision of Aki, and they have a mother-daughter moment. Right after saying goodbye to her, someone touches her shoulder, and Asuka turns around and sees her mother Kyoko smiling down to her, and nodding approvingly.
    • When Yui is saying her final goodbye to Shinji, the narration states that she's proud of her son.
    • Gendo's final thought toward Shinji having achieved happiness, upon which the story ends.
      But Gendo couldn't follow the discussion much longer. The low chatter faded out and the veil before his eyes seemed to grow again, leaving the picture of this family lingering in his mind as the last one before sleep slowly consumed him again.
      A family...
      Unnoticeable to him, he smiled at that thought. That was what he had always wanted. He had almost forgotten it over the path he had taken in these past ten years, but... they had been like that once too. Only with Yui gone, there had been a critical part missing that he couldn't see replaced by anyone else but her. Without her, they couldn't have possibly been happy.
      Now Shinji had all he had ever wanted for himself. A life with people who loved him without question. People he could be happy with.
      Gendo felt envy toward his son for that. But most of all, he – for once – was as proud of him as a father could possibly be.
  • Sore Loser: When she was again defeated by Bardiel, Asuka was sore, moody and irritable for several days.
    "I still can't believe I lost again!" the redhead mumbled out of the blue.
    "Asuka, we're alone." Shinji yawned. "Misato left while you were taking a shower."
    "So what?"
    He gave her a curious look. It had been a while since he had seen her grumpy like this, at least without just acting it. "You're not saying that you still take something like that so personally, are you?"
    "And what if I do?" she grumbled and rolled on her side, turning away from him.
    "Oh, Asuka..." He chuckled at her behavior. For someone who had always thought of herself as mature, she sure had kept some childish attitudes even after actually going through adulthood. At least that's what he hoped it was...
  • The Soulless: In chapter 9 Rei explains that her clones are mere vessels to hold her soul, and since they have no soul, they feel the world around them but they are not aware of it and they can not comprehend it. They do not live; they merely exist.
  • Sour Outside, Sad Inside: After returning to the past Asuka is depressed, worried and pained the whole time because she and Shinji are forced to go through their worst trials again and worst of all their daughter is missing but she has to keep pretending to be a brash, temperamental, hostile thirteen-years-old kid rather a mature woman in her twenties. She also wore a mask to hide her fragility the first time around but it is worst now because she is feeling more depressed and now she realizes how childish was her act.
  • Spin-Offspring: The webcomic sequel Aki-chan's Life follows the daughter of Shinji and Asuka.
  • Spoiler Cover: More of a Rewatch Bonus than an outright spoiler, but Aki is just barely visible on the bottom right of the cover and as one of the clouds. It's easier to see on the full size version.
  • The Stations of the Canon: It starts right before the attack of the Twelveth Messenger, and it follows the order of the Angel battles, changing events in-between. The major changes start after the battle against Zeruel.
  • Stepford Smiler: Shinji and Asuka smiled so no one knew that they were in pain because they had a child, and she was gone.
  • Supernaturally Young Parent: Aki, the daughter of Asuka and Shinji, conceived after the events of the third impact was born when her parents were about 16 or so. Pretty young to begin with. Four years pass, then everyone was swept back in time and her parents returned to the age they were in the anime (14) while she remained unchanged (she's a very precocious 4). They still remain loving, mature parents, but the awkwardness of the whole situation is... well you get the idea.
  • Surprise Pregnancy: Due to her mess of insecurities, Asuka flipped out when she discovered she was pregnant and had tried to hide it from Shinji (She even went as far as to starve herself in a misguided attempt to induce a miscarriage). He only found out after a rat got into their trash and he stumbled onto a positive pregnancy test Asuka tried to hide. To say he was surprised would have been an understatement. Incidentally, Asuka avoids the usual markings of trope, as what tipped her off to her condition was missing one of her periods.
  • Survival Mantra: During her Mind Rape, Asuka repeatedly told herself "This isn't real". It didn't work, and she only survived because Shinji had Misato set up a private comm channel in advance.
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial: In chapter one:
    Misato: You're worried?
    Asuka: Worried? Ha! Why should I be? It was his own fault that he's trapped in there!
    Misato: I haven't even mentioned Shinji...
    The really funny part about this is that Asuka wasn't trying to hide her worry for Shinji; she was trying to cover for an Out-of-Character Moment betraying what she was a time-traveler. And for once, her reputation as a Tsundere helps her out and no one notices the slip.
  • Sweet and Sour Grapes: Shinji and Asuka were very bitter about coming back in time due to losing Aki in the process, even though it meant another chance to save the world and their friends. They eventually learned to accept the loss and move forward. After the final battle they're reunited with Aki.
  • Take That!: In two not-quite-canon bonus pages, Jimmy pokes fun at the Rebuild movies.
  • Talking in Bed:
    • In chapter 4 "Love", Shinji and Asuka talk several times while they share a bed, as their relationship grows stronger.
    • In chapter 6, Shinji and Asuka have a bed argument after Shinji found out that Asuka was pregnant.
  • Talking to the Dead: Shinji and Asuka -and later their daughter Aki- do this in After-TI chapters. Although instead of a grave, they go to the LCL sea.
  • Taking the Heat: When Gendo has Ritsuko and Rei brought before him following the destruction of the Dummy System, Rei unexpectedly claims that Ritsuko set it up on her request. Ritsuko gets demoted from head of Project E as a result, but is allowed to walk away free instead of being detained, with the added satisfaction to see that Rei is no longer as loyal to Gendo as he expected.
  • Taking You with Me:
  • Tears of Joy: Shed by Asuka at the end of the last chapter when she got reunited with her and Shinji's daughter.
    "Smile when you're happy, cry when you're sad... and do both when you're happier than you've ever been."
  • Technical Virgin:
    • A literal example. In "The Final" Asuka points out that it is technically her first time due to Mental Time Travel.
    • In an earlier chapter she jokingly suggested Shinji he started thinking of ways to make up for their former first time.
  • Teen Pregnancy: Thanks to the Law of Inverse Fertility, Asuka gets pregnant from Shinji a few years after Third Impact, despite being on the pill. Asuka is utterly unprepared to the idea of having a child, so she hides it from Shinji at first and tries to starve herself in a misguided attempt to cause a miscarriage, which causes a major strain in their relationship when Shinji discovers it. After much reluctance, she eventually comes to embrace her motherhood.
  • Tempting Fate: Asuka hangs a lampshade on how it's bad luck to propose before the final battle. She even compares it to Retirony.
  • Thanks for the Mammary: In "love", after Asuka and Shinji have been sharing a bed for a while, she wakes up to find his hand on her chest (he's still fast asleep). It's a sign of their developing relationship that she isn't that bothered by it (a fact that she finds strange herself), but she still removes it before he wakes up.
  • That Was Not a Dream: In chapter 10 Shinji and Asuka wake up to find they are fourteen and living in Misato's apartment again. Feeling utterly frightened and distraught, Asuka pleads Shinji telling her that it (surviving after Third Impact, falling in love, getting married and having and raising a child) was not just a dream. Shinji promptly reassures her that he also remembers.
  • Their First Time: After getting together in the post-apocalyptic world, Shinji and Asuka's relationship progressed slowly and steadily. They were somewhat weary and hesitant about sex, but after their first date Asuka decided that they needed to break the last barrier between them. She and Shinji talked and agreed to make love for first time.
  • The Three Faces of Eve:
    • Asuka is the wife in more ways than one: She is wise, dependable and supportive. She is the one makes plans and devises strategies and Shinji usually depends on her for everything.
    • Misato is the seductress, often acting flirty towards Shinji (although she toned it down when she learnt that Shinji and Asuka were secretly married
    • Rei is the child: she is innocent, inmature, insecure and socially ignorant.
  • This Is Something He's Got to Do Himself: Before fighting Arael, Asuka asks Shinji not interfering, stating that is her fight and no one else’s.
  • Time Travel: It is not revealed the method that Kaworu or whoever did it used, but in chapter 10 Shinji and Asuka found stuck in their teen selves and back six years in the past.
  • Time-Travel Tense Trouble: As soon as the first scene of the first chapter Asuka has trouble keeping the tenses straight in her head:
    She still had problems to play this charade in front of everyone, and it seemed to only grow harder. She wasn't sure if she would be able to keep it up much longer at all. Not while these thoughts disturbed her mind; thoughts of all the things that happened... or will happen soon.
  • Timey-Wimey Ball: Exploited by Kaworu to make sure that Aki is reunited with her parents.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Go ahead, Gendo, torture the short-tempered combat-trained teenager with the name of her missing child. Obviously nothing can go wrong with provoking a Mama Bear.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Shinji and Asuka are now more experienced and better fighters, without their immaturity and issues holding back their potential.
  • Took a Level in Cheerfulness:
    • After meeting Aki, Rei becomes more cheerful and smiles more often.
    • After saving the world and meeting their daughter again, Shinji and Asuka are happier and less burdened.
  • Took a Level in Idealism: After going through Instrumentality Shinji has realized live is pain... but also happiness. During a dispute he manages showing that to Asuka and from that point their relationship gets better and they gradually get over their many issues and neuroses and become better persons.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: After Third Impact, Asuka gradually gets over her issues, matures and becomes a mother, and in the process she becomes nicer and less bratty.
  • Tranquil Fury: When Gendo says he questioned Asuka about Aki, Shinji gets furious, but he doesn’t it show outwardly because he knows that his father wants to provoke him. So he decides to hold back, wait, and then make his father pay.
  • Trapped in the Past: In chapter 10 Shinji and Asuka found themselves stuck in this situation: someone or something had sent them back to the past and they had no way to return to the future. Why would they want go back to that future post-apocalyptic wasteland where they were the only humans left? Because their daughter had not returned with them. Shinji inmediately wanted to change the past but for a while Asuka was torn between trying to avert the end of the world or let it happen in hopes of finding Aki again.
  • Trauma Conga Line: Shinji and Asuka had gone through numerous psychological traumas before becoming Child Soldiers. After the end of the world, they finally got over their problems and insecurities, matured, became parents... and then they were thrown back to the past without previous warning and without their daughter.
  • Trespassing to Talk: In chapter 9, school janitor Hisao Yamaki is coming home after work, only to discover Kaji sitting in the darkness of his living room to inquire about some sensitive data. Said data being the reason why Yamaki has been into hiding for the past fifteen years, this visit is quite the unpleasant surprise for him.
  • Troubled Fetal Position: This is how Rei found Aki in the last episode.
  • True Love's Kiss: Invoked and defied in the epilogue. Shinji and Asuka take their daughter Aki to the hospital to see a comatose Gendo. They explain Aki that maybe her grandfather will never wake up. She gets sad and then exclaims: "I know! It's like in the fairytale! If I give him a kiss, he'll surely wake up!" Before no one can stop her, she gives him a short peck. To her disappointment, it does not work.
  • Turn Out Like His Father: Shinji was frightened of becoming a father, among other reasons, because he was afraid of him turning out to be like his father and hurting his child like Gendo had hurt him.
  • Tyke-Bomb: Asuka was one in the past, being groomed by NERV to be cannon fodder in the incoming war. After going back in the time, she tries to help Rei, who is still a puppet loyal to Gendo.
  • Unbroken Vigil: When Gendo is rendered comatose, Ritsuko visits him and keeps watch over him constantly. Don't ask her why, though.
  • Underestimating Badassery: Gendo thought that Asuka wasn't in a position to make threats after being arrested and handcuffed. He taunted her, and she nearly got him killed.
  • Unfinished, Untested, Used Anyway: In the original timeline, Gendo tried to invoke this trope with the Dummy Plug system, and it worked (temporarily). In the fanfic, his attempt fails because his son knew how to go about pulling the plug on it.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: Between Shinji and Asuka until they got together. After Impact they danced around each other for a while, wanting to get together but being still too afraid to act on their feelings.
  • Unstoppable Rage: Subverted. When Gendo used the name of Aki to taunt Asuka she got raving mad. She broke free despite of being handcuffed and surrounded by Gendo’s agents, leapt at his desk and tried to throttle him. However they managed to sedate her before she closed her hands around his neck.
  • Unwitting Pawn:
    • Subverted. Gendo and SEELE believe that everyone are their pawns… but due to time-travel shenanigans, Shinji and Asuka know exactly what they intend to do and later they tell Misato.
    • From a certain point of view, Shinji and Asuka are reluctantly using everybody in NERV as their pawns to avert the end of the world.


  • Villainous Breakdown: The fall of the first MP-EVA during the final battle marks the shift of SEELE from the Omniscient Council of Vagueness they were in-show to a Not-So-Omniscient Council of Bickering over the ruin of their plans for Instrumentality and the potential ways to try to salvage them. The unnoticed fatal Villainous BSoD their chairman suffered while they were arguing doesn't help to clear the air.
  • Violently Protective Girlfriend: Violently Protective Wife, in fact. Although she has mellowed down since she was a teen, she channels and unleashes all of her remainder fury against whoever threatens with harming Shinji. Zeruel, Kaworu and even Gendo found out the hard way.
    Kaworu flinched from the exquisite pain as Asuka's fist rocketed into his stomach. It took merely a second until his smile returned while the redhead used the chance to escape his close proximity.
    "If you really need to know: Yes, I am afraid!" she admitted yelling. "I won't let him be hurt, not by you or anyone else."
  • Walking Spoiler: Anything that involves a little girl named Aki Ikari, the daughter of Shinji and Asuka.
  • We Used to Be Friends: Subverted with Misato and Ritsuko. They almost broke their friendship off, but an unintended side-effect of Shinji and Asuka’s meddling with the timeline was they patched things up after the destruction of the “Reiquarium”.
  • Wham Line:
    • It pulls a nasty twist at the end of Chapter 5:
      Shinji:"We had a child."
    • Another smaller one occurs in the middle of chapter 3, marking the first divergence unplanned by Shinji and Asuka, when Hikari, out of concern for Toji, asks him about his absence at lunch, leading him to tell her about him being chosen as Fourth Children.
      Toji:"I... I... I managed to get a better medical treatment for my sister."
      Hikari:"But- That's great! What did you do for that?"
      Toji:"Nothing much. Just sold my soul..."
    • Chapter 11 has one that's less about what was said, and more who said it.
      Kaworu: "As you wish... Mrs. Ikari."
    • After Third Impact is avoided, we get a rather heartwarming one when Asuka walks into Rei's apartment.
      Asuka:"What is it you wanted me to see?"
      Aki: "Mama?"
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: After Lilith is destroyed and Gendo shoots himself in the head, it's never revealed what happened with ADAM being implanted in his hand. However, when he semi-wakes up from a coma during the last chapter, he notes that he can't feel his right arm. Hmmm...
  • What You Are in the Dark: Nobody knew that Shinji and Asuka were time-travelers. They could have let everything happen again, not trying to change anything, or quit piloting to spare themselves their worst ordeals, reasoning that Third Impact would happen no matter what (sure, they might have been separated and sent with their relatives, but TI would reunite them again)... and nobody would ever know that they had left the world dying. Still they chose to fight and save the world.
  • When She Smiles:
    • Asuka liked teasing Shinji because she loved seeing him smile after everything what they'd been through.
    • Shinji loved seeing Asuka smile, too. When she smiles, he usually cannot deny her anything.
      If Asuka had fought that day in her usual manner, he might have been able to persuade her. But he hadn't stood a chance against the still tired yet serene smile that she had worn the whole time, so he eventually had given in when she softly asked him to just drive extra carefully.
  • Willfully Weak: As mentioned above, Shinji and Asuka suppress their sync ratios during tests in order to keep up appearances. Though this causes odd fluctuations in their ratios that do not go unnoticed.
  • Will They or Won't They?: Subverted due to time-travel craziness. Shinji and Asuka had this in chapter 4. However, they were together in chapter 1.
  • Wise Beyond Their Years: Physically, Shinji and Asuka are teenagers. Mentally, they're in their early twenties, and they have the emotional maturity of a person at least 10 years older than that.
  • With Due Respect: After Shinji disobeyed orders when he fought Bardiel, Gendo suspended him from duty for several weeks. Misato tried to protest that such an action could prove fatal in case of another attack, but Gendo refused listening.
  • Wouldn't Hurt a Child: One of the soldiers Rei encounters specifically chose perimeter patrols because he thought he wouldn't encounter and have to kill one of the teenaged pilots. Aki, being included in the kill order due to simply being near Rei, ups the ante. He repeatedly refuses to shoot her, even after being threatened to be court-martialed by his superior, and when the latter decides to do it himself, he finally opens fire... on him. He unfortunately isn't fast enough to eliminate his remaining squad mate before suffering the same fate.
  • You Are Not Alone: During an argument in chapter 4, Asuka tells she'll always be alone, and Shinji replies that she doesn't have to.
  • You Can't Fight Fate: Shinji wonders if this is the case when he's forced to be absorbed into EVA-01 to defeat Zeruel. It's ultimately averted since events start to majorly deviate from canon after that battle.
  • You're Not My Father: Variation. During his confrontation in the second-to-last chapter Shinji says he wishes Gendo was not his father so that he could hate him properly.
  • You Wake Up on a Beach: The post-Third Impact half of the story begins with Shinji and Asuka waking up together on a beach and starting to explore their new world.

Smile when you're happy. Cry when you're sad,[...] And do both when you're happier than you've ever been.