The characters of “Neon Genesis: Evangelion”
are owned by Gainax. This is an amateur, non-commercial story which is not
produced, approved of, or in any way sponsored by the holders of the
trademarks/copyrights from which this work is derived,
nor is it intended to infringe on the rights of these holders. And so it goes.
At any other time, it might have made for a romantic moment. A boy and girl sat side by side on a deserted beach. A peaceful silence surrounded them, broken only by the gentle lapping of the tide as it slowly ebbed and flowed. The sky was a brilliant palette of colors; reds mixed with yellows and blues, with the occasional puffy white cloud to add counterpoint.
The pale, bloated head bobbing in the ocean with its bloodshot eye staring straight at them kind of shattered the overall effect, though.
Shinji Ikari wanted to cry. The last time he’d tried to, though, Asuka had slapped him. His sole companion in this brave new world was gazing out through her one good eye at the giant head of their former compatriot, seemingly oblivious to everything around her. Her long red hair was matted and greasy; her plug suit was torn here and there, but she made no complaint. Come to think of it, other than “Get off me” she hadn’t said a single thing.
Alone at last: Shinji, Asuka, and the hideous head of Rei Ayanami. Not the best beginning for humanity’s second round. He had to believe it would get better. It couldn’t possibly get worse…could it?
A coarse, throaty squawking cry filled the air from behind, breaking the eerie silence. Asuka and Shinji turned as one to face this intrusion, only to find desolation so far as they could see. There could be nothing else alive around here. Third Impact would have seen to it. And yet the cry roared through the heavens again, somehow closer and this time a bit more menacing. Asuka shivered and moved just a little closer to Shinji, who was almost glad for the proximity and the comfort it offered.
A small black oval popped up just above the horizon. A second later, it was joined by five more. And then several more appeared, and it quickly became apparent that there were a helluva lot of little black ovals emerging. More importantly, they were making a beeline toward Shinji and Asuka’s position.
“What the hell?” Asuka gasped, squinting with her good eye at the approaching black mass. “What is that?”
Shinji frowned. A dark memory was floating toward the surface of his thoughts, something foreboding and deadly. And now the armada was close enough to define round shapes, and clawed yellow feet, and bright red tufts of eyebrows. Sunlight glinted off a piece of metal wrapped around a chubby neck, and suddenly Shinji knew all too well what new menace threatened them.
“THEY’RE PEN…” and with that the army fell upon them.
They were merciless. They were relentless. They were unstoppable. The sheer force of their momentum sent Shinji and Asuka tumbling to the ground, and the two humans cried out under the unceasing barrage of clawed yellow feet slamming over and over and over again against their frail pink bodies. The weight of their attackers was such that they never had a chance to defend or protect themselves. Long bloody gashes appeared on their limbs.
Amid the cacophony, Shinji thought he heard Asuka scream something that sounded like “GET YOUR PAWS OFF ME, YOU DAMNED DIRTY…” but it ended in a scream. Shinji wanted to scream as his bones began to snap one after another like toothpicks, but the never-ending barrage on his chest left him breathless.
It was so damned unfair, he thought hazily to himself as he sank into final oblivion. And honestly, death by penguin trampling had to be…the dumbest…lamest…way to...go…
And then he died.
* * * *
Pen-Pen the First, Commander of the Tokyo Hot Spring Battalion and High Priest to She Who Floats, surveyed the carnage and nodded in approval. The fallen bodies were quickly disposed of and the bones sent into the murky waters as an offering to their Goddess, who watched down upon Her Chosen with her one good eye and smiled in approval.
Humanity had had its turn at dominion, only to be found wanting. There would be no second chances now. It was time for a newer, more fitting and adaptable race, to take point on the evolutionary ladder. With the wisdom and guidance of She Who Floats, the penguins would thrive and bring this poor battered planet to new heights of glory.
Pen-Pen squawked thanks to the Goddess and bobbed his head in supplication. His horde of followers quickly joined in, providing an eerie hymn of worship as the sun slowly sank into the west of this brave new world, this planet of the penguins.