Rei is waking up in her apartment. She remains unmoving, eyes open and on her bed for a few moments. Methodically, she gets out of bed, showers, changes into school clothes, takes up book bag, and leaves. As she enters the Ohtori Academy grounds, she comes upon Utena who is just arriving there as well.
Utena to Rei: Good morning, Ayanami-san.
Rei to Utena: Good morning.
Utena joins Rei. This is very clear. Rei doesn't join Utena, she actually appears ambivalent about Utena's presence. As they begin walking in together, Utena's admirers call to her as they wave.
Utena waves back.
Utena: Good morning.
Rei looks around at Utena's admirers with a cold curiosity in her face. The use of "-sama" towards someone of equal station obviously puzzles Rei as they walk, but she doesn't question Utena about it.
Rei to Utena: I don't need your pity.
Utena now looks puzzled.
Utena to Rei: What?
Rei to Utena: Your pity. I don't need it.
Utena to Rei: I don't understand.
Rei to Utena: I don't need the pity of a popular student, or that of an Eva pilot.
Utena stops a moment, then shrugs.
Utena to Rei: Most of the people here are only interested in me because I look different or because I pilot Eva. I thought it would be nice to have a friend who cared about neither of those things.
Utena begins walking off. Rei, hearing Utena's words, stops walking. Utena has gotten about seven steps away when Rei calls out to her.
Rei to Utena: Tenjou-sama.
When Rei uses the "-sama" honorific, there is no admiration with it, like with Wakaba or Kensuke, nor sarcasm, like Juri. Rei says it like it is natural to do so.
Utena stops and looks over her shoulder.
Rei to Utena: You don't have to go.
Utena smiles and walks back towards her.
Switch scenes. Helicopter is flying over the ocean. This is the same helicopter we saw in Episode VII and it is carrying the crate with the mobile socket. Inside the helicopter is a NERV pilot, Misato, Juri, Shinji, Kensuke, and Wakaba. Kensuke has a camcorder out and is filming everything. Wakaba is sitting next to Shinji and doesn't look too happy to be flying.
Kensuke: A MIG-55D transport helicopter, and I'm getting to fly in it! I can't believe it! It's so good to have friends! Thank you, Shinji!
Shinji to Kensuke: You're welcome.
Misato to Wakaba: I'm glad you decided to come with us, Shinohara-san.
Wakaba to Misato: I must have been crazy to say yes. What am I doing here? Why did I agree to come?
Wakaba clutches onto Shinji's arm for dear life. Shinji looks surprised as she does, but doesn't look embarrassed either.
Kensuke to Wakaba: I believe your words were, "Ikari-kun asked me to go on a trip with him!" To which I asked, "Oh? Is it love after all then, Wakaba-san?" To which you said, "It's nothing like that, just any excuse to get out of school."
Wakaba hears this, realizes what it must look like to be clutching onto Shinji at this point, blushes deep red, lets go, and sits up straight.
Wakaba: Well...yes...exactly...anything to get out of school.
Misato chuckles. Shinji looks a little embarrassed now. Juri stares straight ahead, saying nothing. In her right hand, she is running her fingers over her locket idly. The locket is still on its chain around her neck, so she has pulled it out of her tunic.
The helicopter flies on, and we see the U.N. Naval fleet as the helicopter zooms over it. It lands on an aircraft carrier. As it does, we see the silhouette of Asuka on a higher level against the sun as she watches the group leave the helicopter. Focus then on the group. Kensuke is looking at everything on the carrier excitedly.
Kensuke: Vintage Pre-Second Impact fighters, vintage Pre-Second Impact vessels. It's so great! If you're a man you can't help but weep at such a sight.
Wakaba to Kensuke: I think you're getting all excited over nothing.
She turns to Shinji.
Wakaba to Shinji: Ikari-kun, are you about to weep?
Shinji is taken aback.
Shinji to Wakaba: Me? No...
Wakaba to Kensuke: See?
Kensuke isn't looking where he is walking, and as he is about to respond he bumps into someone and falls over. He looks up to see Asuka standing above him, hands impatiently on her hips. The rest of the group now sees Asuka as well. Juri is near the back, and she remains there.
Asuka: Hello, Misato. Hello, Arisugawa-sempai. How are you both?
Juri to Asuka: I am fine, Soryu-san.
Misato to Asuka: As well as ever, though you seem to be much taller than I remember.
Asuka to Misato: Not just taller, my figure has developed as well.
Kensuke looks highly nervous and crawls backwards towards the group.
Misato: Let me introduce to the rest of you, the pilot of Evangelion Unit 02, Soryu Asuka Langley.
Asuka to Misato: So, which of these are the overly discussed Third and Fourth Children?
She walks up to Wakaba.
Asuka to Wakaba: You can't be the Fourth Children.
Wakaba to Asuka: Me? Um...no.
Misato to Asuka: Tenjou-san is back at NERV.
Misato indicates to Shinji.
Misato to Asuka: This is the Third Children, Ikari Shinji.
Asuka looks at Shinji like she is dissecting him. Shinji looks curiously at her back.
Asuka to Misato: He looks a little...dull.
Wakaba to Asuka: He is not!
Asuka to Shinji: Needing a girlfriend to defend you?
Shinji to Asuka: No. I just didn't feel it necessary to trade hurtful words with a child.
Asuka to Shinji: WHAT?
Misato and Kensuke look at Shinji a little dumbfounded. Juri and Wakaba look at Shinji with newfound respect.
Switch to Bridge of the carrier. Misato is speaking with the captain and first mate. Shinji, Juri, and Wakaba are there, but Kensuke and Asuka are not.
Misato: Thank you for the transportation of Unit 02.
Captain (sarcastic): You brought a power socket for that brat's doll. I can't thank you enough for that.
Misato: Think of it as a back-up in case of emergency.
Captain: It's against such emergencies that my entire fleet is here to guard that toy! This is insulting. When did the Pacific Fleet become a glorified cargo transport?
First Mate: After the formation of a certain special operations organization, I believe.
Juri to Captain: Considering the cargo's importance, it seems somewhat lacking. Would you please sign?
She hands the captain some forms. He doesn't take them.
Captain: I'm signing nothing. At the request of NERV Third Branch in Germany, the Pacific Fleet is in charge of this operation.
Misato to Captain: When will you relinquish control?
Captain to Misato: When we reach Shin-Yokosuka and unload the cargo.
Misato to Captain: Understood. I'd like to remind you that should an emergency arise, however, that my authority exceeds yours.
Wakaba to Shinji: Wow, she has so much grace under pressure.
Shinji: She's acting like Ritsuko-san.
Kaji Ryouji to Misato: You're as gallant as ever.
Misato turns, now seeing Kaji as we get our first glimpse of him. She is shocked.
Switch scenes: Kaji, Misato, Shinji, Wakaba, and Juri are all in an elevator moving downward.
Misato to Kaji: What are you doing here?
Kaji to Misato: Accompanying Asuka. I'm on official business from the Third Branch.
Misato looks exasperated. Juri watches her with some amusement.
Misato: Why did I not expect this? Shouldn't I have expected something like this?
Switch scenes. They are in the galley of the carrier. Kensuke and Asuka have rejoined the group. Kensuke is still is happy-land, Asuka is sulking. Misato is also sulking. Wakaba and Shinji seem to be ignoring everyone. Juri watches everything.
Kaji to Misato: Are you seeing anyone?
Misato to Kaji: Why does that concern you?
Kaji (playful): Oh, how you wound me.
He looks at Shinji, who is speaking with Wakaba.
Kaji to Shinji: Ikari Shinji-kun.
Shinji looks up, hearing his name.
Shinji to Kaji: Have we been introduced?
Kaji to Shinji: Everyone knows you in this line of work. You live with Misato, right?
Kaji to Shinji: Does she still toss about madly in bed?
This gets everyone's attention, Asuka's in particular. Misato looks like she wants to die.
Misato: What...what are you implying?
Kaji to Shinji: She hasn't changed, has she?
Misato: This has got to be a joke...no, not a joke...a nightmare
Switch scenes. Wakaba and Shinji are walking along the carrier's hard deck. Misato and Juri are watching this from another level.
Juri to Misato: Old lover?
Misato nods, leaning on the railing, covering her face in her folded arms. She looks up drearily.
Misato to Juri: At least Shinji seems to be doing well.
Juri nods, looking at the two walking.
Juri to Misato: Mmm. Who would have ever guessed?
Switch views, lower level, with Kaji and Asuka, still overlooking Shinji and Wakaba. Kaji looks absent-minded.
Asuka to Kaji: Who does he think he is, anyway?
Kaji to Asuka: I suspect that after defeating three Angels, your mere presence isn't enough to impress him.
Asuka doesn't look happy with that.
Switch scenes. Wakaba and Shinji are walking together.
Wakaba to Shinji: Are all people who work at NERV this neurotic?
Shinji to Wakaba: I hadn't thought of it that way before. I guess they all do seem a little off-center.
Wakaba to Shinji: Even you?
Shinji thinks that over.
Shinji to Wakaba: I guess I'm the same way. My father and I have difficulties. Misato has...several problems. Juri is the same. Tenjou wears a boy's uniform-
Wakaba to Shinji: Don't say rude things about Utena-sama. She wears that outfit to be a Prince.
Shinji to Wakaba: A Prince?
Wakaba nods. Looking down, she sees Shinji's Rose Signet.
Wakaba to Shinji: You have the same ring she does. Did a Prince give you your ring too?
Shinji to Wakaba: Eh?
Wakaba looks coy.
Wakaba to Shinji: Maybe a princess gave you yours.
Shinji to Wakaba: I don't under-
Wakaba to Shinji: Are you going to be a Prince as well?
Asuka (off): Third Children!
Wakaba and Shinji turn to see Asuka.
Asuka to Shinji: Come with me.
Switch scenes. Pan view from the carrier to the transport moving Unit 02, which is under a great tarp. Then inside, we see Asuka standing on top of Unit 02 while Shinji watches from the floating walkway.
Shinji to Asuka: It has four eyes...
Asuka to Shinji: That's not the only difference. Units 00 and 01 are merely prototypes, testing models used in the development process. This is the first Evangelion designed for actual combat. It's a true Evangelion, the intended model.
There's a rumbling, and everything shakes.
Shinji: What was that?
Asuka: An explosion nearby?
Switch scenes: Shinji and Asuka are now holding onto the railing of the ship, looking at a large mass of something moving rapidly through the water. The Pacific Fleet is firing at it.
Shinji to Asuka: It's probably an Angel.
Asuka to Shinji: A real one?
Asuka gets a devious expression.
Asuka: A chance.
The Pacific Fleet is firing uselessly at the moving mass of water. Inside the carrier control tower, Misato enters with Juri in tow.
Captain to First Mate: What's going on?
Misato: From what I can tell, it looks like an Angel is attacking your fleet.
Captain: You're not authorized to be here during combat.
Juri to Captain: Might I remind you that during an Angel attack our authority takes precedence over yours?
Captain to Misato: Would you shut her up and get off my bridge?
Juri doesn't look phased.
Juri to Captain: Refusal to allow NERV personnel to assume command during a predescribed -
Misato to Juri: It's alright, Juri-san.
First Mate to Captain: Titus Andronicus has been rammed and is sinking fast.
Captain to First Mate: Have all ships fire at will!
Juri to Misato: Useless...
Kensuke and Wakaba now enter.
Misato: As long as the Angel's AT-Field is intact.
More shots of the Pacific Fleet attacking futilely, then back to Misato and Juri.
Juri: Why is it here and why now? Is it here for Unit 02?
Misato: It seems to be looking for something.
Switch to Shinji and Asuka. Asuka has a bag over her shoulder and is pulling Shinji down a stairway.
Shinji to Asuka: I have to get back to the carrier!
Asuka to Shinji: No, you're coming with me. Think for a moment. What pilot is going to take you back there with all the shells in the air right now?
Shinji to Asuka: ...good point. Where are we going?
Asuka to Shinji: We're going to stop it in my Unit 02.
She takes out a Plug Suit from her bag, still in its plastic wrap, and hands it to him.
Asuka to Shinji: Change into this and wait here.
Shinji looks like he is about to protest, and then doesn't. He nods and begins changing.
Switch to Kaji making a phone call inside the carrier on his cell phone.
Kaji: We're under attack at this moment. You said nothing about an Angel attacking us.
Gendo (off): Why do you think I had Unit 02 there with you? I even had Katsuragi bring a reserve pilot. If necessary, escape by yourself.
Kaji: I know.
Back to Shinji and Asuka in Unit 02's Entry Plug. Both of them are wearing red, female Plug Suits. Shinji doesn't look comfortable.
Shinji: I hope nobody else has to see me in this.
Asuka to Shinji: Don't disturb me.
Asuka closes her eyes and begins concentrating. As she does, Eva 02 begins to power up.
Asuka: Erst Erfu"llung, Anfang der Bewegung, Anfang des Nervenanschlusses, Also lo"se sie es von links kleidung, Single start!
Warning lights flash.
Asuka looks frustrated.
Asuka to Shinji: You don't speak German, do you?
Asuka (impatiently): How did you get to be the Third Children, anyway? Switch default language interface to Japanese.
Warning lights cease.
Asuka: Evangelion Unit 02, powering up!
Back on the carrier bridge.
First Mate: Message from the Othello. Evangelion Unit 02 is activating.
Misato looks excited.
Misato: Nice, Asuka!
Captain: Shut down the sequence, reset it.
Misato grabs the radio from him.
Misato: Ignore that. Launch, Asuka!
Captain to Misato: You don't have the authority!
Juri to Captain: Refusing to concede authority to NERV personnel during an Angel attack is against your orders. She has every bit of authority she needs.
The captain does not look happy with that remark, especially coming from a fifteen year old woman, regardless of how intimidating Juri might think she is.
Captain to First Mate: Get that child off my bridge now!
The first mate comes over and escorts Juri off the bridge. He also forces Kensuke and Wakaba off as well. Juri goes without a fuss, but Wakaba and Kensuke don't look very excited about being away from Misato in the middle of a firefight.
First Mate to Misato: You do realize this thing only has Type-B equipment. It's not prepared for underwater combat.
Switch scenes. Evangelion Unit 02 is standing on the deck of the Othello, and now is leaping ship to ship.
In the Entry Plug:
Asuka to Misato (off): Prepare the emergency socket, Misato.
In the carrier bridge:
Misato to Asuka: I understand.
Captain to Misato: Like hell we will.
In the Entry Plug:
Shinji: If we don't get the socket, we'll have less than a minute of active power. And we have no weapons.
Asuka: I'll only need the Prog' Knife. And if a minute is all I have, I'll do it in a minute.
The Eva lands on the flight deck of the carrier. The ship wobbles uncertainly until the Eva rights itself. The emergency socket isn't ready. The Eva pulls its Progressive Knife from the shoulder harness and waits.
Back in the carrier bridge:
Misato: Shinji-kun, you're there too?
Shinji (off): Yes...
Misato to Captain: Prepare the socket!
Captain to Misato: Forget it. Two kids in a doll are not going to stop that thing.
Misato to Captain: Close combat is the only way to defeat it! Without power it has less than a minute to do it!
On the Flight Deck: The Eva looks to the useless power socket and then to the oncoming rush of water.
In the Entry Plug: the Eva's internal power monitor is at 30 seconds and counting.
Shinji: Not good, not good.
Asuka to Shinji: Hush! Didn't they make you study dueling?
Shinji to Asuka: What?
Asuka to Shinji: Hush!
Asuka closes her eyes, and concentrates for a moment.
Flashback, seen over the image of the Entry Plug with Shinji and Asuka. We see the Ohtori Fencing Gym, with Ruka, Miki, Juri, and Asuka. Asuka and Juri are working together.
Juri to Asuka: Careless opponents will lunge sloppily, leaving you every opportunity to strike. You must recognize this, and move accordingly. Come at me.
Asuka lunges at Juri, who steps deftly sideways and gently thwaps Asuka in the stomach with the epee as Asuka passes by.
Juri to Asuka: See?
Asuka smiles and nods. End Flashback. Asuka opens her eyes, focused. The power monitor is now at 20 seconds.
The oncoming rush of water is almost there.
Back in the carrier bridge:
First mate to Misato: Call them off, Captain Katsuragi. If they fall in the water, we'll never-
Misato holds up one hand angrily, and the First Mate stops.
Outside the bridge: Juri, Kensuke, and Wakaba are watching. Planes are falling off the flight deck.
Kensuke: What a waste, what a waste...
Juri to Kensuke: Be silent.
The Sixth Angel leaps majestically out of the water towards Unit 02.
In the Entry Plug: Asuka's eyes light up and she yanks on the controls.
On the flight deck: Unit 02 waits, then just as the Sixth Angel is about to crush it, reaches upward, slashing a long, deep gash along the underbelly of Angel. Blood goes everywhere, covering the flight deck and Unit 02. The Angel's core is exposed as it howls in agony, sailing over the flight deck as Unit 02 easily gets to the side of it.
In the carrier bridge: Misato's eyes spark up as she sees the core.
Misato to Captain: Have them fire now!
The battleships fire as the Angel is about ready to sink back into the water. One shell hits the core. The Angel explodes. The Pacific Fleet is tossed about by the ensuing waves, but it survives.
Outside the bridge: Juri's eyes are wide with amazement. Then they close, and she finds herself smiling to herself.
Inside the Entry Plug: Shinji smiles at Asuka.
Shinji to Asuka: Very nice.
Asuka is proud.
Asuka to Shinji: Naturally. You expected anything less than perfection?
Shinji to Asuka: You had a great teacher. I think I'll pay more attention to her from now on.
Asuka turns her head from Shinji and frowns.
Asuka (thought): Even defeating an Angel, I can't escape Juri's shadow.
On the carrier deck: Kaji is walking out, flight helmet in hand.
Kaji: Well, it seems I won't be needing to vanish after all.
Switch to docks: A sign reads Shin-Yokosuka. The group is getting off the ship. Wakaba and Kensuke are waiting at the bottom. Juri and Misato are first, followed by Kaji close behind. Misato doesn't look happy. Asuka is next, still wearing her plug suit and looking even more pissed than Misato. She storms off in a huff. Asuka is followed by Shinji, who is also wearing the Plug Suit since his clothes were on the Othello and he doesn't have anything else to wear.
Kensuke looks terrified, and points at Shinji.
Wakaba turns and sees Shinji wearing Asuka's plug suit, and looks just as terrified.
Wakaba to Shinji: Shinji-kun, no! Just because Utena wants to be a Prince doesn't mean you have to be a Princess!
Shinji looks at them both in shock.
Shinji: No! No! It's not what you think!
Kensuke to Shinji: You're already dressing like her? You're betraying me, Ikari-kun!
Wakaba to Shinji: And me too! Shinji-kun!
Shinji looks exasperated, walking off with Kensuke and Wakaba close behind, still talking.
Switch to Ohtori Academy. Saionji is looking at the Rose Garden from the second story of the adjacent school building. Inside, Rei and Utena are talking. A few moments later, another figure enters behind him.
Kiryuu Touga: Lovely, aren't they?
Saionji to Touga: The roses or the girls?
Touga to Saionji: Both.
Switch views, we now see Touga and Saionji from the front as they watch from the second floor. Both of them are in their Student Council uniforms.
Saionji to Touga: You always did have a flair for the obvious, Touga-san.
Touga to Saionji: Ayanami Rei is speaking with someone? Have we ever seen this before?
Saionji: Amazing, isn't it?
Touga to Saionji: Who's her friend?
Saionji to Touga: That's Tenjou Utena, one of the NERV pilots. She just transferred here.
Touga: Hmm...looks like she's someone worth getting to know.
Touga walks off. Saionji watches him go, and then returns to watching Utena and Rei.
Inside the Rose Garden:
Utena to Rei: This isn't your responsibility, then?
Rei to Utena: No.
Utena to Rei: Do you enjoy it? Watering the roses, I mean?
Rei to Utena: I don't know.
Utena to Rei: You don't know? Then why do you do it?
Rei to Utena: ...some part of me of me must enjoy it.
Utena to Rei: You don't sound certain.
Rei to Utena: I'm not.
Rei turns away from her as she begins watering the blooms.
Rei: I dislike roses.