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The Great War

In an age long past, Firma was formed by ancients long forgotten, seeded with life by another, and --- abandoned. Left to their own devices, the two dominant species -Humans and Monsters- lived together in harmony. As time went on, the inhabitants of the world honed their magic. Their civilization thrived under wise leadership, and it seemed as though peace would reign through the land---. What follows now is a recounting of the Great War and the breaking of the Barrier, as described by surviving documents and word of mouth from the Elders.

    The worries of this world all started with a discovery. A small kingdom had invited a Boss Monster, from a neighboring village, to a festival celebrating the turn of the millennia. Sometime during the festivities, the king tripped and hit his head on a fountain. A nearby monster, part of the Boss Monster’s escort, rushed to the King’s aid; but it was already too late. The King’s soul was absorbed as the monster attempted to provide aid---. When word first got out, everything was fine -even hopeful-. Some documents describe failed experiments to transfer a human soul into a new body, using a monster as a temporary host. As time went on, however, several groups arose that were suspicious of monsters. Some groups suggested that monsters planned the king’s death, to absorb his soul. The other groups, and those who were present, spoke against them to no avail.

    The unrest felt by humans and monsters grew in parallel with the gap between them. As the unrest grew, more and more kingdoms began researching technology that did not depend on magic. They were unwilling, wisely so, to continue being dependent on magic. At first it was just small things. Things to distract them from their problems, both perceived and real. The thing about research, however, is that it can lead to many dangerous things. What started off as a means of celebration, fireworks they called them, became weapons. From explosives to propellants to projectile weapons. Vehicles were not far behind. As they became more technologically advanced, unease began to decrease among the populace. Those in power, however, did not feel the same. They ordered secret experiments to be pursued, none of which are known. The remaining documents reference some sort of laboratory, but it has yet to be found.

    While humans advanced their technology, the Human Magi honed their craft. Unwilling to fall behind the monsters in magic potential, seven of the most powerful Magi, called Sages, opened a school. The Sanctum of the Seven Sages was open to all, but focused on human advancement. With wisdom, the Sages infused and enhanced the stone of their school; in times of disaster, it would stand tall and protect those within. Within the Sanctum a powerful artifact was created, one that would protect those within from reality itself. It was a masterpiece. A perfect crystal sphere made almost entirely of small interlocking arcane patterns, filled with determination. This artifact, when activated, was designed to create a massive barrier that would block anything from entering or exiting it. Of course, it was also designed with a means to take said barrier down; but fate had other plans.

 

    The Great War started in 1975 with a single human king. Greedy for power, desperate for safety from a fictitious enemy, and impatient. Unwilling to sit by and wait for his enemy to make a move, the king set his forces against the Monster kingdom. The smaller settlements fell swiftly, and no monster was able to send a warning. As the troops continued in their march of death, the king spread information through the human kingdoms. The king declared war against the monsters, claiming that monsters had begun stealing souls from humans within his kingdom. Though fabricated, it brought old worries to the surface and made them appear valid. Kingdoms that had already been weary of monsters armed themselves and joined the war, as with many who were undecided. Those who saw the truth and tried to aid Monster-kind were killed. Only those in the Sages’ Sanctum were safe.

    Death and destruction reigned supreme during the Great War, both sides took heavy losses. Years had passed without either side gaining any meaningful ground. Monsters, despite their affinity for puzzles and magic, found themselves slowly running out of options. Humans, despite their overwhelmingly large armies and superior weapons, also began to run out of options. The human kings, however, did not care. It had been made known, not long after the war started, that Boss Monster souls could be absorbed by humans; but the kings declared any such act as treason. They felt that, no matter what advantage it would give them, taking a monster soul into oneself would make them no better than monsters. The king who started the war, refusing that option, turned to the Sages for assistance.

    The Sages had previously made their stance known to all, that monsters deserve to live just as much as humans; but that did not stop the greedy, desperate king. After many attempts to persuade the Sages, they relented---, or so the King believed. The Sages proposed a way to rid him of the Monsters once for all, in a single fell swoop. They proposed to give the Artifact to the Monsters as a false offering of peace, and use it to rid the world of monsters. At the time, only the Sages knew the true nature of the artifact, so the king agreed to their plan.

    Peace, so desperately sought, was only an illusion; but it was an illusion the King of Monsters could not see through. He sent a messenger with his acceptance of the proposal and his terms, and received in reply a place for the now horridly historical event. The human king, feeling impatient and overly confident, began preparations to take the Artifact to the meeting. It is speculated that sometime during transport the Artifact was scratched or otherwise damaged in a small, unnoticed way--- it is this failure that lead to disaster. The peace negotiations went better than expected, for the humans and the monsters alike. After the meeting was concluded the human king presented the King of Monsters with the Artifact, and convinced him to present it to his people as he made his speech for the successful negotiations; the king of monsters, of course, accepted it and agreed.

    As the Monster king took the Artifact into the mountain, the Sages used their magic to watch the Artifact and waited for when it was in the best position possible. It didn’t take long for the King of all Monsters to begin his speech, and when he did the Sages began their ritual. Pouring their magic into the Artifact, the Sages activated and powered it remotely--- but chaos ensued as the barrier was forming. Unable to stabilize, the outside of the barrier collapsed in on itself repeatedly; sending pulses of chaotic magic throughout the land. Many of these pulses flew off into the sky, but those that didn’t twisted or killed any living thing they touched. It is unknown if any human kingdom in the west still remains, but all villages that can be safely explored have been razed. Magic infused buildings, once sturdy and resistant to the elements, exploded as the magic within violently destabilized. The Sanctum of the Seven Sages, however, was untouched. The Sages, in their wisdom, prepared the school against magic attacks; after all, you can’t learn magic without blowing things up eventually.

    On the edge of death, the Sages used all their power to stop the Artifact from functioning; overwhelming the magic within and reducing it to nothing more than an ornate crystal sphere. The barrier, now a one-way death trap instead of an impenetrable sanctuary, began to draw magic from the world to remain stable. Only one Sage survived, the Red Sage. Filled with determination, the Red Sage fought against the grasp of death and returned to their Sanctum. Sadly, however, the Red Sage passed in the year 1993 due to incurable injuries after only a few days. Though leaderless, the magi managed to maintain order for many decades.

    Without properly trained architects to repair the Sanctum, it began to degrade as time passed and aberrant creatures attacked. Many technological advancements were lost as well. With no one trained in electrical engineering many conveniences degraded and ceased to function, without vehicle repair they had to return to horses, and without a proper leader order was slowly chipped away. Some took to studying the remaining technology in hopes of learning how it functioned. Others began clearing a path to Mt. Ebott, in hopes that Monster-kind would be able to help.

    Once secured, the mountain was under almost constant surveillance. Due to the distance, and lack of automotive transportation, it became necessary for a permanent base to be set up. So, in 1998, a small village was founded at the foot of the mountain. Made mostly of volunteers, the families that lived there kept the area clear of the aberrant creatures that now dominate the world. Occasionally a few volunteers would go up the mountain to check on the barrier, those who did rarely returned. As time passed, many of the aberrant creatures were pushed back beyond the mountain pass; the area became moderately safe. With the way clear, and the area safer, the remaining Magi began to study the barrier. Their research, however, proved fruitless. Without access to magic, they could not take the barrier down.

    During the year 2015 a child named Chara ran away for unknown reasons, presumed dead. Later that year, a monster descended from the mountain carrying their body; the family of the child attacked the monster, and was joined by others. As hopeless decades passed, a few families within the village started to express their dislike for monsters; claiming that trying to save them is pointless, since they kill humans. Without hope, and with the rising tension, many from the village began to disappear; mostly children, but a few adults as well. Some are thought to have wandered off into the wilderness, and have likely been killed by the malignant fauna. Others, however, made it clear that they had left for the mountain, despite the warnings.

Only one ever returned alive.

Curious and determined, Frisk went hiking up the mountain to see if the rumors were true; armed with a stick that, with enough imagination, looked vaguely like a sword. As they were exploring, they stumbled and fell while in a dark cave… what happened after that is Undertale.

The year is 2045, 52 years after the Great War; and at long last…
The barrier is broken.

Chapter Text

* Looking out at the sunset... fills Frisk with DETERMINATION.

Looking upon the horizon, Frisk and crew can see the westward setting sun directly ahead, another mountain peak to the south west, and a mountain sized building Frisk calls the "Sanctum of the Seven Sages" to the north west.

At the foot of Mt. Ebott, below the sun, the group can faintly see the tops of buildings and what must be a defensive wall. One building in particular that stands out is a tall dark building, probably a mansion.

Unfortunately, It is difficult to see more detail from their distant position, especially since Spring is starting and the leaves are beginning to grow back.

In front of the group lays a dirt path that stretches down the mountain and into the forest, before disappearing behind newborn foliage...

Toriel, gazing at the sunset, lets out the breath she just realizes she is holding. "Oh my..."

Asgore comments "Isn't it beautiful, everyone?"

Not fully paying attention, Alphys comments: "Wow... it's e-even better than on TV. WAY better! Better than I ever imagined!"

Undyne, keeping her gaze on the sight, asks "Frisk, you LIVE with this!? The sunlight is so nice... and the air is so fresh! I really feel alive!"

Undyne starts to smile as she finishes talking, feeling better than ever. Truly, monsters are free.

Meanwhile, Papyrus, wondering about the scene before him, finally asks his brother:

"HEY SANS... WHAT'S THAT GIANT BALL?"

Without demeaning him, Sans casually replies: "we call that... 'the sun,' my friend."

"THAT'S THE SUN?! WOWIE!!! I CAN'T BELIEVE I'M FINALLY MEETING THE SUN!!!"

Asgore, still in his own little world comments "I could stand here and watch this for hours..."

Toriel, with a stern undertone, says "Yes, it is beautiful, is it not? But we should really think about what comes next."

"Oh, right. Everyone... This is the beginning of a bright new future. An era of peace between humans and monsters. Frisk... I have something to ask of you." Asgore looks down at Frisk and asks "Will you act as our ambassador to the humans?

Without a moment of hesitation, Frisk accepts the responsibility. To which Papyrus begins exclaiming "YEAH! FRISK WILL BE THE BEST AMBASSADOR! AND I, THE GREAT PAPYRUS... WILL BE THE BEST MASCOT! -

As soon as Papyrus begins to move, however, Frisk anxiously warns him "It isn't safe out here. We need to stick together."

Sans lets out a little chuckle, "heh. looks like the kid's got you all figured out paps. if they say it's dangerous to split up, we should listen to 'em..." Sans gave his brother a wink, "don't ya think?"

Frustrated that he will have to wait longer to meet his soon-to-be new human friends, Papyrus sighs and says "FINE... BUT WHEN WE GET TO THE HUMANS, I, THE GREAT PAPYRUS, WILL GREET THEM!!"

Frisk nods in agreement.

Undyne looks at Frisk and complains "Aw come on, it can't be THAT dangerous! We just went through... I don't really remember exactly, but YOU have been through so much! No doubt all of it was worse than anything out here!"

Frisk shakes their head in disagreement, Undyne relents. She feels a little concerned, but doesn't show it. Alphys slides a little closer to Undyne, not feeling particularly confident on the Surface anymore.

After a moment of silence, Toriel speaks up. "Frisk... You came from this world right...? So you must have a place to return to, do you not?" After a moment of hesitation she continues "What will you do now?"

Frisk, gazing at the setting sun, feeling somewhat confused by the view, suddenly remembers their parents and says "I need to make sure mom and dad know I'm safe, they must be worried sick."

Disappointed, but understanding, Toriel replies "Ah. ... I see. ... Well, I hope-"

Frisk interrupts Toriel with an unexpected hug. "My parents would love to meet you." Frisk looks up at Toriel and shifts their face so subtly that only a mother (and Sans) could tell they are smiling.

Toriel let out a sigh and returns the hug, relief tinged with only a little disappointment; perhaps, in another life, they would stay with her; but in this life they have loving parents. "I am glad... Well, we should get going."

"Yea, let's go... Will you hold my hand Toriel? Let's head to my village to see if the guards know where my parents are."

Pleasantly surprised, Toriel accepts the child's hand and walks with them down the mountain; friends... and ex... in tow.

 

The path they are following is well worn, and seems to have just recently been taken. In the distance, the group can hear the call of animals and... something else. Whatever it is, it put Frisk on high alert. The forest trees, though their leaves are sparse, are not easy to see beyond; but that just makes the group more curious, despite the dangers. The sunlight, filtering through the trees, fills them with joy.

After about 15 minutes of walking, Frisk hears a woman in the distance, calling out: " Frisk! Where are you mon ange? " but it is almost too faint to hear.

Frisk stops and looks up at Toriel, "I think I can hear my mom calling, looks like we don’t have to ask the guards after all."

"That is good. We should hurry though, would not want her to worry more than she needs to."

 

The group continues down the path, following Frisk, and they turn south at an intersection away from a larger path; it seems to be the path that leads to the village. From this vantage point the group can more clearly see the village and the fields around it. On the East side, are fields that seem to intersect with the river, no doubt farmland. To the North, facing the group and Mt. Ebott, is a green field with the occasional yellow splotch of flowers. And to the West lays more farmland. The wall is still not entirely clear from their position, but what they can see looks worn out and damaged.

Frisk looks over to Papyrus with a subtle look of worry, making sure he stays with the group.

Sans chuckles and says "don't worry kiddo, we'll keep paps out of trouble... but hey, how long has this village of yours been here? It looks relatively new."

Thinking for a moment, Frisk replies "About 47 years?"

"47 years huh? well, i guess that means it isn't the same one chara came from then."

Frisk's face adjusts subtly into one of amusement "Huh?-" Before Frisk could finish, or Sans could reply, they hear the woman call again, this time much closer. Frisk yells in response, "Over here mom! Oh and I made some new friends!"

The woman's voice, sounding a little worried, yells back saying "stay put mon ange, we are coming! Then you can introduce us to your... new friends."

 

Frisk and crew obey, and, after about a minute of anxious anticipation, Toriel's grip slightly tightens around Frisk's hand. Frisk looks up at Toriel and gives her a reassuring smile. A few moments later the group sees a slim, fair skinned, woman in a black dress emerge from the side of the road. She moves carefully and gracefully through the brush to keep her dress, and parasol, from catching on any stray twigs or branches. Behind her, assisting her in keeping her dress from tearing, stands a man with tan skin, in a black suit and bow tie. On his side is a rapier, ready to be drawn at the first sight of trouble.

Upon seeing the party, the two approach and their original worries fade. The man nearly shouts "My star, you had us worried sick! You are lucky you were not gone that long, who knows what your poor mother would have done?"

The woman bends over slightly, looking at Frisk, saying "yes, my angel, your father was worried too. I see you have brought some... interesting friends with you." A sly smile forms as she looks to Frisk's friends.

Turning to look at the one holding Frisk's hand, she curtsies and says "My name is Marceline. Marceline Addams. And this..." She gestures gracefully with one hand to the man next to her, "is my husband, Conrad Addams; great grandson to Gomez Addams. And you must be Frisk's new friends, it is a pleasure to meet you."

Toriel releases Frisk's hand and returns the curtsy. But before she could reply, Papyrus leaps to the front of the group and announces, with one hand on his chest, "I AM THE GREAT PAPYRUS, MR AND MRS FRISK'S PARENTS! IT IS A PLEASURE TO MAKE YOUR ACQUAINTANCE!!" his short cape flapping in the non-existent wind. The couple grin at his display.

Sans steps forward and offers his hand to Conrad. "i'm sans, sans the skeleton."

Conrad takes San's hand readily and firmly, and feels a joy buzzer go off. Laughing, he grabs Sans behind his elbow and shakes his hand a little more vigorously "Haha! Well met Sans, and well met Papyrus! A joy-buzzer in the hand, classic; I like your style!"

"heh, well frisk i gotta say; i like your dad already."

Toriel, stifling a giggle, continues her original introduction: "I am Toriel, and behind me is... Asgore, the king of monsters."  Asgore waves with a sheepish smile as Toriel looks down at Frisk and continues: "Frisk has been a wonderful child, they even helped break the barrie-"

Undyne enthusiastically cuts in "YEAH! They are AWESOME! Like, when I uh... They were so cool even when... uh... heh..." Undyne, somewhat embarrassed remembering what happened in the Underground, stumbles on her words before Alphys joins in to help her partner...

"I think what Undyne means is that the underground is n-not... uh heh... p-particularly safe for... humans... But! Frisk was OK!... Oh... My name is Alphys, by the way... aheh I uh... forgot to introduce myself......" Alphys and Undyne look to the side and begin to blush nervously as Toriel gives them both her patented ‘Mom stare.’

Conrad speaks reassuringly to Alphys. "No worries, Alphys, and it is a pleasure to meet you all!"

Turning to look at Toriel, he continues to speak. "Now... you say that my dear little Frisk helped break the barrier?"

Asgore, as he reaches forward and pats Frisk on the head, says "yes, Mr. Addams. They were quite helpful with other things as well."

"That is wonderful news indeed! And you may all call me Conrad.” He ponders for a moment before continuing. “I think we should celebrate, but perhaps not now... Almost everyone stays indoors as night approaches. Let my wife and I go and call off the search, we will meet you at the village and, once we have all gotten some much needed rest, we can talk about celebrating this wonderful turn of events!"

Now looking to the group in general, Marceline remarks "I am sure Frisk will be safe in your care, in the meantime."

 

After a brief curtsy between Marceline and Toriel, as well as a firm handshake from Conrad, Frisk's parents turn around and walk down the path.

Looking back as the group travels onward, Toriel catches sight of Conrad gently grabbing Marceline's hand, pulling it close to his face, and kissing it as they talk to each other about the day's events. They look excited, and relieved.

Frisk grabs Toriel's hand, and smiles at her subtly, "lets go."

With the party further down the path, Undyne begins to speak to Frisk sheepishly. "Sorry about that Frisk... I uh... almost told them about all that stuff that almost happened to you, and I started to panic..."

"It's OK, my dad and I spar all the time; It's pretty fun. He probably would have laughed about it. After all, I'm not hurt."

Undyne feels relieved, but still a little concerned. No wonder why Frisk evaded all her attacks so easily, at least they were having fun... right?

"...Hey punk, you never told me you could fight with a sword though; why are you holding out on me, huh?"

Frisk shrugs.

"Pff if you had told me THAT when you asked about my giant sword, I would have let you use it instead to point at stuff!"

"Your sword is too big for me Undyne... besides, wasn't that a gift from Alphys?"

"Oh... heh… but still!"

Undyne smiles, feeling more comfortable now after their brief chat, and begins to walk closer to Alphys.

 

The group continues on in comfortable silence, which is only occasionally interrupted by the sound of crickets chirping as night slowly encroaches. They occasionally stop to enjoy the sights and sounds the forest has to offer -including the sound of the river nearby-, and after a few minutes they start to see the village. It's small, with golden flowers popping up here and there, and looks simultaneously old... yet new. Like it was recently constructed of old parts. Toriel's grip tightens, seeing the end of their journey, and seeing this village that seems to be just barely getting by. The wooden wall around the village is clearly visible, and the marks on it worry the group of monsters. Frisk seems nonchalant about it; as usual.

"It's OK," Frisk says, "it's a lot better than it looks, trust me. We just started to replace some of the older buildings with stronger ones, and soon we are going to fix up the wall."

"That is not it Frisk, not completely." Toriel says, her words tinged with worry, "It is true that I am concerned about this village, but I am also concerned about you. A child should not have to grow up in such dire circumstances."

Frisk remains silent as the party approaches the eastern gate where two guards are standing, suspicious of the new arrivals.

Papyrus, ever eager to make friends, goes ahead of the party to greet the wary guards; which seem unsure of what to make of the view.

Standing in his customary pose, with his small cape flapping in the non-existent wind, Papyrus greets the guards, "HELLO HUMANS!! I AM THE GREAT PAPYRUS! I AM SURE YOU ARE ALL SHOCKED TO SEE SOMEONE AS GREAT AS ME BEFORE YOU! BUT BE NOT AFRAID, WE CAN BE FRIENDS!!!... WHAT ARE YOUR NAMES?"

The guard on the left cautiously replies "Uh... I am Johnathan, and this is-"

"I can introduce myself John!" The guard on the right interrupts, then sighs. "My name is Arthur, pleased to meet you. You... must be monsters?" Arthur holds out his hand for Papyrus to shake.

"WHY YES! WE ARE MONSTERS. VERY OBSERVANT OF YOU! NYEH HEH HEH!" Papyrus takes the man's hand and shakes it excitedly. "BEHIND ME IS ASGORE, THE KING OF MONSTERS, MY BROTHER SANS..." Pausing as he eyes his brother, he looks side to side and says "BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU SAY OR HE WILL RUIN YOU DAY WITH PUNS."

"you could say, i'll punish you. heh." Sans declares, making Papyrus rather upset.

"SAAAANS! CAN YOU NOT?! I AM TRYING TO MAKE A GOOD IMPRESSION WITH THE HUMANS! WE DON'T NEED YOUR EFFORTLESS PUNS!!!"

"hey, i put a ton of work into my puns a-"

"NO SANS! I AM PUTTING MY FOOT DOWN!!" Papyrus shouts as he begins stamping his foot.

Sans chuckles as he looks at the expressions of the guards, "you should see the looks on your faces. priceless. if it'll make you happy paps, i guess i won't make puns for a while." Sans winks at Frisk mischievously.

Though very confused at the events unfolding between them, the guards keep their wits about them. "Wait," Andrew says as he looks at Asgore's imposing form. "Did he say, king of monsters? I'm assuming... you are the king of monsters?"

Asgore steps forward and greets the guards, giving a slight bow. "Howdy... Yes I am Asgore, the King of Monsters. It is a pleasure to meet you two."

"Hey... Johnathan, doesn't he kinda look like that monster that came in years ago, but bigger?"

"Yea, but... it must be a coincidence. Look, Frisk is with them; they can't be all that bad."

"True..." Andrew ponders for a moment, and then Toriel speaks.

"You said something about a monster coming into the village, did you not? Was he... by chance... carrying a child's body?"

"Yea," Andrew replies. "A lot of villagers attacked him... I don't suppose you know who the monster was, or why he had a child's body...?"

Toriel, letting go of Frisk's hand, holds her hands to her chest while looking to the past and says "yes that was... our son. Asriel... he... he was best friends with Chara... They-"

A large grey haired man in armor walks up from behind the guards and interrupts with a deep voice full of empathy. "You don't need to say anymore, ma'am... I'm... sorry for your loss. We will get it straightened out in due time... In the meantime, let me guide you through the town to the Addams's residence. I bet Frisk is anxious to get home." The man holds out his hand to Toriel, "My name is Bernard, by the way, Bernard Ward. I am the Captain of the Guard in this village."

Toriel accepts the man's hand, and receives a firm but gentle handshake in return. "Thank you, Mr. Ward."

Impressed by his stature, Undyne looks the man over while Alphys hides behind her; maybe anime is real after all?

"Of course, ma'am. We should get going, it is starting to get dark, we can continue introductions at the Addams family residence... The streets are mostly empty now, so it shouldn't take too long."

Asgore nods at the man, "Lead the way."

 

The village is, despite appearances, nice. Many of the houses look like log cabins, but the newer looking houses are made of stone. The group passes by a large clearing that looks like it supports various activities. The town hall is two stories tall and looks well used. Next to it the group passes what looks like a barracks, complete with a training ground to the side; the dummies they use look more like weird animals than humans. A small church-like building hosts various unknown symbols on it. Alphys, Sans, Asgore, and Toriel recognize them as magic symbols, but they are not set up properly.

Though few people are on the streets as darkness begins to claim the sky, many look through their windows while the group makes their way. Villagers try to sneak glances at them through shuttered windows, children stare, and others panic -rushing out of sight-. Monsters haven't been seen for a long time, so many are wary; others remember the last encounter vividly.

It isn't hard for Asgore to see over most of the buildings, no doubt special preparations need to be made for his... large stature. Most of the buildings seem smaller than normal, probably to minimize their presence. He can see a large, dark, building in the distance that looks to be somewhat in disrepair. The group continues through the streets, waving occasionally as onlookers and the rare, curious, passersby investigate. Papyrus, of course, is more than willing to talk to any who ask questions.

"YES! I AM A SKELETON! NOT JUST ANY SKELETON, HOWEVER!... I... AM THE GREAT PAPYRUS!!! AND IT WOULD BRING ME GREAT JOY TO BE YOUR FRIEND!!... WE ARE GOING SOMEWHERE RIGHT NOW THOUGH... SO MAYBE LATER."

"What about him?" A young kid says, pointing at Sans while standing in their doorway, "is he also a Skeleton? He looks different."

"YES, THAT IS MY BROTHER SANS!... SANS WHY AM I INTRODUCING YOU AGAIN!? YOU SHOULD DO IT YOURSELF, LAZYBONES!!"

"heh, but you do such a good job at it papyrus. besides, i waved.”

"NO YOU DIDN'T SANS. I SAW YOUR LACK OF WAVING! YOU CANNOT FOOL THE GREAT PAPYRUS!"

Toriel stifles a giggle as she listens to the brothers go back and forth, then decides to join in. "I am sure Sans will introduce himself to everyone later, Papyrus. He is probably just eggsausted. I bet he will open up out of his shell when he gets some sleep."

Sans snickers at Toriel's puns as Papyrus groans as though he has been physically assaulted.

"UHG, WHY DO YOU HAVE TO LIKE SUCH LAME JOKES?"

"welp, i'm hungry now too actually. i could really go for some dates, couldn't you frisk?"

After Frisk giggles at Sans' and Toriel's food puns they notice that their house is nearby, so they grab Toriel's hand excitedly to pull her ahead of the group and to the gates. "There is room for everybody here, even Asgore will fit!"

Toriel smiles at the child for their consideration "It is a very nice house frisk, thank you for your concern. I am sure we will find places to stay soon enough, so we don't overstay our welcome."

"You don't have to! We have plenty of room!" Frisk counters.

Toriel giggles at the child's innocent enthusiasm and relents. "Well, if you insist. I am sure it will be alright... As long as I am able to have... space."

As the rest of the group turns the corner and approaches the building, Papyrus exclaims "WOWIE!! WHAT IS THE BIG SPOOKY LOOKING BUILDING!? FRISK, IS THIS.... IS THIS WHERE YOU LIVE!? IT'S HUGE! AND AWESOME!... IT ISN'T HAUNTED IS IT?"

"No, but mom wishes it was. 'Can't have everything,' she says."

 

Big and spooky indeed, the house looks easily a few centuries old. Standing two stories tall (with a three story tall tower in the front), with dark wood paneling, and looking like a little TLC will turn it into a different building, the Addams's Gothic mansion is easily one of the largest buildings in the town. Beyond the fence and gate, the yard is taken care of moderately well; it almost seems as if a child mows it, which very well could be the case.

"As you probably already know," Bernard says while rubbing Frisk's hair into a mess, "this little trouble maker lives here. It is probably the only house that can accommodate all of you..."

As Bernard looks back to the mountain, he continues. "Speaking of, I am sure there are more monsters in the mountains, but I advise that they stay there for now until we can prepare space for them... The surface is not as safe as it used to be anymore, not since the war. Some pretty nasty magic got released when the barrier went up, and it transformed most of the creatures in its path into... twisted things." Bernard gives a worried look to the monsters as they look at him curiously, their concern rising.

"That is most unfortunate news," Toriel replies. "We will have to let everyone know as soon as possible, so no one gets hurt."

"Unless you can teleport, I don't recommend going back up the mountain path at night. All sorts of creepy m-... abominations start to roam when it gets dark."

"Bad Saint Bernard!" Frisk admonishes as they playfully karate chop his waist, feigning a brutal punishment, "I know you were about to call them monsters. I told you that you can't do that, because the real monsters would be offended!"

Papyrus, perplexed by the new title, blurts out "SAINT BERNARD? IS HE A PRIEST OR SOMETHING? OR IS HE SECRETLY A MEMBER OF THE DOG CLAN?"

"Hehe, no that is just my nickname for him" Frisk replies as they start to counter against the assailant who begins messing up their hair. "He looks big and scary, but he is really kind and grandfatherly if he likes you!"

Bernard chuckles awkwardly as he defends himself. "H-hey Frisk! Don't go giving away my secret! You’re gonna give me a bad name, I've gotta keep up my tough appearance or the recruits won’t respect me!"

"Everyone already knows, silly. Why do you think they call you Grandpa Ward now?" Frisk stars to giggle as they are assaulted with tickling fingers from Bernard.

Toriel is filled with relief and nostalgia while watching them. Frisk has some pretty great friends, and family... it makes her miss her own even more. As she stares off into space, reminiscing, the sound of Frisk giggling fades and she feels someone tugging on her sleeve. When she looks over, Frisk is standing next to her with their arms out expectantly; with the most subtle look of worry only a mother could notice. The rest of the party has apparently gone ahead, and it's just Frisk and Toriel.

She kneels down as she embraces Frisk in a hug. "Thank you, Frisk."

"Come on, Toriel, let's go. I want to show you our awesome kitchen and the library! Maybe you could make some butterscotch-cinnamon pie?"

"I would like that very much, let us go." Toriel stands up, takes Frisk's waiting hand, and follows them into the house.

 

* Looking at their awesome mansion... fills Frisk with DETERMINATION.

* A bright yellow star appears next to the gate, Frisk feels rejuvenated.

* FILE SAVED.

 

As the group starts to approach the doors, Bernard briefly continues introductions with those he has not learned the names of before departing; having to get back to the other guards before they get into trouble.

Shortly after, Frisk's parents walk up and join them.

"Please," Marceline asks in an even but mysterious tone, "let us give you a tour of our home."

"Yes! And from now on, think of this as your home too. I insist." Conrad declared. "Mi casa es su casa!"

Papyrus looks around the group as they make their way to the doors and asks, "HEY... WHERE IS SANS?" Looking toward the road, he continues. "DID HE FALL ASLEEP AT THE GATE? THAT LAZYBONES, I'LL GO GET HIM!"

"no need paps, i'm right here."

Turning around, Papyrus sees Sans. "WHERE DID YOU GO OFF TO, YOU KNOW IT'S DANGEROUS OUTSIDE WHEN IT IS DARK! I SWEAR, IF YOU WERE SLEEPING IN THE MIDDLE OF THE ROAD I AM GOING TO HAVE TO-"

"relax pap, i just got turned around. i'm here now right?"

"HOW DID YOU GET TURNED AROUND IN FRONT OF THE HOUSE!? YOU JUST HAD TO GO FORWARD!" Papyrus shouts a little too loudly.

Sans shrugs and gives Frisk a wink before replying, "well, what can i say... oh, hey," Sans looks to the side, "while i was turned around, i let the others know to hang out in the underground until we come back."

"SANS ARE YOU SAYING THAT YOU WENT ALL THE WAY BACK TO THE UNDERGROUND ON ACCIDENT!? HOW!? IT HASN'T EVEN BEEN THAT LONG!!"

"i took a shortcut, of course... i knew where i was going, i was just too lazy to turn around i guess. so i figured 'eh, why not, might as well let everyone know it is dangerous out here.'"

Papyrus stares at his brother in disbelief. "SAAANS!! THAT IS THE MOST LAZY YET RESPONSIBLE THING YOU HAVE DONE YET!!!..."

Papyrus groans before continuing, "COME ON THEY ARE LEAVING US BEHIND. I WANT TO SEE THE KITCHEN AND SHOW THEM MY AMAZING PASTA MAKING SKILLS!"

"heh, alright papyrus, i'm right behind you."

Sans and Papyrus join the rest of the party as they pass through the entryway.

It... is... huge! Asgore has no trouble going through the door or moving around in the foyer and, despite appearances, the house is well kept. Dark stained wood is very prominent throughout the mansion, and the red carpet contrasts nicely. Occasionally, as they guide their friends through the mansion, Frisk points at something and says "don't touch that." Which, really, just made them want to touch it even more.

Frisk, however, explains: "The house has all sorts of traps and tricks in it, you need to be careful."

Papyrus is intrigued by it all, it's like the mansion is a giant puzzle, waiting for him to solve it.

Ascending the stairs, the group moves to the second story and each is shown where their bedroom is. As the party rounds back, going down the stairs into the foyer, they head to the kitchen. Toriel is quite taken by it. The appliances are so old, but looked... new? The wood burning stove is kept very clean.

Toriel asks, "would it be too forward of me to ask if I may use the kitchen on occasion?"

Chuckling heartily, Conrad replies "Of course, of course! Like I said, make yourselves at home! But I suggest waiting until after we finish the tour, there are more places for us to visit... and it is important that you are familiar with where all our surprises are; wouldn't want anyone to get hurt on accident!"

The group continues moving through the house as the Addamses give them a tour. They visit to the conservatory, the ball room, the very large living room, the play room -which looks like where Frisk spends most of their time-, a small alchemist's laboratory -which Alphys was given permission to use-, Marceline's study filled with books, the library -whose many books catch Toriel's eye-, and Conrad's office (which also has books, but the group was warned against touching them). Nearing the end of their tour, they arrive at their final destination; the greenhouse attached to the side of the mansion.

Asgore is impressed by the wide variety of plants and, since he loves gardening, he asks "may I help tend to your plants?"

Marceline responds, as even toned and mysterious as ever, "of course, King Asgore, any help is welcome."

"Just Asgore is fine. Frisk's family is our family."

Frisk nods in agreement.

"Very well, Asgore. I just have one warning, sometimes the vines get cranky if they are not fed. They have a tendency to... eat things."

"Golly, well... I will be careful then. Thank you for the warning."

 

With the tour over, the party makes their way back to the main lobby and slowly separates as they go to their rooms; hoping to get settled in before dinner. Thinking on the day's events, it seems... serene. Just laying down in a bed that isn't truly theirs, with the sun now over the horizon giving way to the stars and moon... It's almost too good to be true... almost. Trouble, it seems, is just around the corner.

 

Toriel quickly cooks up a meal for everyone with the help of Marceline and Frisk. Toriel's fire magic makes cooking go even faster.

Marceline, quite taken with the dancing flames, admits sadly "it is quite unfortunate humans have lost magic, witchcraft just isn't the same."

Occasionally, Conrad sneaks into the kitchen and plays around foolishly with Marceline and Frisk, taking a bite here, pretending to chop off his hand there while "helping"... Toriel reminisces as she watches them. It is nice to see Frisk in such a loving and close family. With dinner ready, and dessert in the oven, Toriel goes to yell for everyone, but Marceline stops her before she can, saying "you can use these brass pipes Toriel, they go throughout the house."

"Oh! Why, thank you. That makes calling everyone much easier... Perhaps I would not have been able to yell loud enough, now that I think about it."

After finishing her statement, Toriel looks at the brass pipes and flips the covers off before speaking into them.

Upon hearing Toriel through the pipes, Undyne and Alphys leave their room. Shortly after, Undyne decides to talk with Alphys as they look around the house on their way.

"No wonder the punk survived the Underground so easily... Growing up in a place like this, you have to be really careful... But man, this place is FREAKING AWESOME!"

"I know, right? T-they even have a lab I can use for experiments, and the house is s-so huge! Even though this is the surface, I feel like... like we are still in the underground! B-but not in the bad way, you know?"

"Yea I know exactly what you mean! It's familiar, but in a good way! And look at this!" Undyne punches one of the hallway walls, "this place is reinforced with some seriously strong stuff!"

"Huh... I w-wonder why they need reinforced walls..."

"Are you kidding Alphys? I took a wrong turn and almost got blown up! If the walls weren't reinforced this place would probably be in shambles..."

Alphys, so focused on the words 'almost got blown up', didn't register the rest of what Undyne said and she immediately starts worrying and panicking.

"OHMYGODWHATDOYOUMEAN!? THERE ARE EXPLOSIVE TRAPS HERE!? WHO DID THAT???? WHY!? OHGODIMNEVERLEAVINGMYROOM!! "

Alphys curls her tail behind herself and starts walking even slower, looking more critically at the floor.

"calm down alphys, i'm trying to practice sleep walking..." Sans says as he winks at Alphys reassuringly, "i'm sure it was nothing, all the stuff i've seen here is pretty mild. mostly just special effects and smoke."

"ARE YOU SERIOUS SANS!? SLEEPWALKING!? IN THIS HOUSE!?..." Alphys almost starts to yell, which Sans just shrugs off. Slowly getting her wits back she continues speaking, but somewhat shakily. "O-ok... but still... isn't all of this d-dangerous? I mean sure, Frisk grew up here and seems to act like... like it is fine, b-but maybe we should talk to them about... toning it down?" Alphys starts to tap her claws nervously as she stares downward, watching for booby traps.

"if you're that worried about it, then go ahead. the kid's dad said to think of this as our home. kinda hard to do that if you are worried about being blown up, right?"

"R-right... I'll talk to them about it... soon... maybe tomorrow. Let's keep going, we don't want the food to get c-cold..."

As they walk down the stairs, they begin to hear the sound of clanging and clashing metal. The closer they get, the more they recognize the sounds of swordplay... and sure enough, at the base of the stairs is Frisk and Conrad; sparing.

 

"Engard Senior Mustache! I will have your head this day yet!" Frisk shouts playfully and enthusiastically as they thrust their toy rapier forward.

As he parries the very telegraphed motion, Conrad feigns while saying "Oh ho! Getting a little over confident are we my little star? I will show you what it means to lose at the hands of SIR CONRAD ADDAMS! "

Their play goes on for several more seconds before Frisk fakes being stabbed in the heart and starts pretending to slowly die, saying "Noooo! Curse you Addams! You have foiled my plans yet again!.... BLEH!" as they fall to the ground in an overly dramatic way and start to laugh.

The group, though amused with the antics of father and child, continue to make their way down the stairs -while stifling their laughter- and go on their way to the dining room; which reminds the duo that dinner is ready.

 

To Frisk's view, the dining room is aclog with the fur of... two very fluffy boss monsters. Toriel and Asgore decide to sit separately from each other, as there is plenty of room at the table for them to do so. The table itself is made of the customary dark wood, and can easily sit twice the number of monsters that are present (size accounted for). The chairs are well crafted and comfortable, and the candles in the Chandelier dance with magic fire. The entire scene is a feast in and of itself. Laid out on the table is a very large meatloaf, several loaves of bread, and various types of green vegetables. There are also beverages of various kinds, but all the glasses at the seats were filled with water.

"Have to drink water before you are allowed to drink anything else, otherwise you will shrivel up!" Frisk comments, as everyone else approaches the table.

Shortly after, Frisk comments again. "Well, except the skele-bros, but I forgot that when I set their places..."

Not offended by the oversight, Sans asks "do you guys have any more ketchup?"

Marceline, curiously replies, "of course, you may get it from the fridge."

"Careful mom, Sans will drink all our ketchup if we don't set a limit." Frisk warns.

"heh, hey kid who are you talking about? I wouldn't drink all the ketchup... just most of it."

"Well, as long as you don't drink too much you can help yourself. We need some for other meals, after all."

"'course."

Papyrus, somehow managing to enter the dining room unnoticed, blurts out "I WOULD LIKE SOME MILK, IF YOU HAVE ANY. IT IS GOOD FOR YOU AND FULL OF CALCIUM!"

Though his sudden and loud voice surprises her, Marceline doesn't show it as she replies "of course Papyrus, there is a new gallon in the fridge... please don't drink it all."

"THANK YOU MRS FRISK'S MOM!"

"Please, you may all call me Marceline."

After getting the ketchup and milk, the two sit at the table near Toriel and begin to eat.

"THANK YOU FOR MAKING THIS WONDERFUL MEAL! PERHAPS SOON I WILL BE ABLE TO SHOW YOU MY WONDERFUL COOKING AS WELL! I AM VERY GOOD AT MAKING SPAGHETTI, IF I DON'T SAY SO MYSELF! WHICH I DO!! NYEH HEH HEH!"

Marceline replies, in as mysterious of a tone as ever, "I think that would be lovely, thank you Papyrus."

 

While sitting around the table, eating their various portions of food, some inconsistencies start to bug Sans again. Thinking back on the day, he remembers the look on Frisk's face while looking at the sunset; the face of someone who is confused. Someone who recognizes what they are looking at, but doesn't know why. So, after having a slice of Toriel's famous pie for dessert, Sans finally decides to ask.

"hey, kiddo, you said that this village was only 47 years old, and it seems chara came from here and that whole event was pretty recent... but that can't possibly be right, because chara died over 1000 years ago. we've been under that mountain for about... two thousand years... give or take a century."

"Huh? That isn't possible, the war ended just 52 years ago... Chara fell in 2015." Frisk, not quite sure of themselves, looks back to their memory of the sunrise again. "Maybe... time in the underground is different for the surface?"

"not likely... but who knows. i guess we wont know till we go back, huh?"

"Yea... Hey mom, dad, how long was I gone for?"

Marceline, after finishing the food on her fork, replies "I'm not sure little angel, but it couldn't have been more than a few minutes."

"...I swear I was there for at least two days... Could I go up to the mountain with Sans tomorrow to investigate these time shenanigans?"

To this, Conrad replies "I think it is best if you don't for now. I'm sorry my little star, but we were so worried when you disappeared; perhaps if you went with Mr. Ward or his squire, but I feel that you should spend the day at home tomorrow."

Dejectedly, Frisk replies "Ok dad... I understand."

Undyne, not wanting her friend to feel too bad, assures them "It'll be fine punk, me and Alphys-"

"Ahem... I think you meant: 'Alphys and I'" Toriel corrects using her signature 'teacher voice'.

Undyne corrects herself, continuing sheepishly, "R-right... heh... Alphys and I can go with Sans to check it out, and we will tell you about what we find; OK?"

Alphys, not sure if she should speak out about being volunteered to do something... but also wanting to stay with Undyne, decides to let it slide.

"then it's settled. undyne, alphys, and i will go back to the underground to investigate. you wanna join paps?"

"HMMM.... NOT PARTICULARLY. TIME JAPES ARE NOT THE KIND OF JAPES I ENJOY... BESIDES!! I NEED TO MAKE A GOOD IMPRESSION WITH THE HUMANS!"

"heh, alright... welp, i think it's thyme I headed to bed. g'night everyone."

As Toriel and Sans snicker at the joke, Papyrus is not happy. "UHG!"

After waiting for Sans to leave the room, Papyrus picks up his and Sans' plates. Everyone else takes their plates to the kitchen soon after as well.

As they clean up dinner, Papyrus asks "MRS. FRISK'S- I MEAN... MARCELINE. WHAT DOES 'MON ANGE' MEAN? YOU SAID THIS TO FRISK, SO I AM SURE IT IS A NICKNAME, BUT IT DOESN'T SOUND LIKE ANYTHING I RECOGNIZE..."

"It is French, for 'my angel,'" she replies while assisting with the dishes.

"OH, I SEE!! HOW FITTING, SINCE FRISK IS LIKE THE ANGEL FROM OUR PROPHECY!!"

Frisk holding back a yawn, says "I should head to bed.... good night everyone," deftly managing to skimp out on chores, using the power of sleepy children and distracted parents.

"Good night little angel, have pleasant dreams."

"YES! GOOD NIGHT FRISK! SLEEP WELL!"

With that, the rest of the night was relatively quiet as the remaining people clean up after dinner and dessert. Not long after everything is cleaned, Alphys and Undyne decide to turn in and, shortly after them, Asgore also excuses himself. Then, it was just Toriel and the Addamses.

Marceline, seeing the hidden distress on Toriel's face, asks "Toriel, why don't you accompany me to my study?"

"I would be glad to accompany you, is there something you would like to discuss?"

"Yes, and no. I would like to make you an offer."

"Oh, alright, lead the way."

While walking to their destination, Conrad turns and heads to the Conservatory while Marceline continues to speak,

"I wanted to thank you, all of you really, for taking such good care of Frisk. I know they can sometimes be a bit of a handful, but I can tell they feel safe with you. I also hear that you enjoy reading, so..."

When they arrive at their destination, Marceline waves her hand toward the study. It boasts quite the selection of books and papers, though not as many as the library.

"I would like you to feel at home, so as long as it isn't from the bookshelf next to the desk, you may read to your heart's content. Some of the books are... dangerous, while some are dreadfully boring. I think you will find the ones on the far wall, near the fireplace, more to your liking. Feel free to use the recliner and fireplace as well, should you want to stay and have some time to yourself."

With an undertone of guilt, Toriel replies. "Why, thank you very much, Mrs. Addams. That is very kind of you. I appreciate your hospitality, and, if I may contradict you, Frisk was a delight to have... Though... Frisk mostly went through the underground alone. I can not say it was an entirely pleasant experience, as I am sure many misunderstandings occurred along the way..."

Toriel briefly pauses to collect herself, "I regret not going with them in the first place, but the past can not be changed."

"Thank you for your honesty, Toriel. And please, call me Marceline. I will be in the conservatory with Conrad should you need anything."

"Alright, thank you again... Have a good night, Marceline."

"You as well."

With their conversation over, Marceline leaves as Toriel sets the fireplace ablaze with fire magic and goes over to the bookshelf. With a book in hand, she sits in the nearby recliner to read... before remembering that she needs to put on her reading glasses.

The night is silent save for the chirping of crickets, and the occasional groan or creak as the house cools down from a day in the sun. Toriel relaxes in the chair, reading a book titled "102 things to do with frog's legs," and slowly begins to doze off.

The night is silent... the stars, twinkling, and the world... eerie?

A howl occasionally echoes through the dark night sky which doesn't belong to any creature the monsters of the Underground recognize; but they still feel at peace... if a little uncomfortable.

* Sleeping in their cozy bed, among friends and family, fills Frisk with... DETERMINATION.

Chapter Text

* DARKNESS, SILENTLY CREEPING IN ALL DIRECTIONS, FILLS FRISK'S MIND AS THEY FLOAT THROUGH THE ENDLESS VOID,
* CREATING RIPPLES OF NOTHING.

* SILENCE PREVAILS IN THE EMPTY SCENE.

"HELLO DARKNESS, MY OLD FRIEND, I'VE COME TO TALK WITH YOU AGAIN..."
* NO RESPONSE...

"NOT MUCH OF A TALKER, AS ALWAYS, I SEE."
* FRISK SEES A FACE FLASH THROUGH THEIR MIND, BUT IT DISAPPEARS BEFORE THEY CAN MAKE OUT ANY DETAILS.

"DON'T BE SHY, YOU'RE ALREADY IN MY HEAD."
* NO RESPONSE...

* FRISK TURNS AND SEES A FAMILIAR SIGHT: THE DOOR LEADING TO THE SURFACE, FRISK'S FRIENDS AND FAMILY SURROUNDING IT.
* THEY LOOK HAPPY.

* AS FRISK WALKS THROUGH THE DOOR, A BRIGHT LIGHT BEGINS TO FILL THEIR VIEW.

* INCOHERENT ECHOES GROW LOUDER AND REVERBERATE WITHIN THE VOID UNTIL THE FAMILIAR SOUNDS OF REALITY FILL FRISK'S MIND.

 

Frisk's Alarm reads: 8:00 A.M. March 26th, 2045.

Failing to hold in a yawn, Frisk stretches as they get up from bed. Moments later they hear their mom calling everyone for breakfast. Slowly but surely Frisk changes from their pajamas -adorned with ghosts and spiders- into their traditional striped shirt and shorts. Waddling sleepily, they move out into the hallway; clumsily bumping into all sorts of traps they placed the night before. Frisk makes their way, in an almost comical manner, to the closest bathroom. If not for their familiarity with the house, and the customary wake up sequence of running into one's own traps, Frisk probably would have been hurt; but at most it only garners curiously concerned looks from Alphys and Undyne. The traps are mostly constructed of left over materials, like wood, some metal bits here and there, and a lot of string; they look pretty effective regardless. One even cut an apple in half... but the two are not really sure if the apple was cut in advance or not. They don't want to find out.

"Huh... o-okay so... that happened... D-do you think Frisk is alright?" Alphys asks, still not quite sure if she should worry.

Undyne, also feeling concern replies "Heh.... I think this is... normal for them?..." then her face lights up as she almost yells "OH!! I just had an AWESOME IDEA!!! We should totally join the Addamses in their weird trap habits, I bet just a few days of it and our reflexes will be AMAZING!!" Undyne smiles wide.

"Uh. I... I don't think that is a good idea Undyne."

"WHAT!? Why not?"

"W-well, my body isn't made for that, Undyne. I c-can't move like you can."

"I guess that means I'll have to participate enough for the both of us! Fuhuhuhuhu!"

Groaning, but not entirely unhappy, Alphys begins to walk down the hallway to the dining room; Undyne follows.

Across the manor, Sans and Papyrus are already well on their way. Unlike Undyne, Sans is already in the process of setting up his own little surprises... So far, he has a sock that leaves another sock behind when you pick it up.

As Papyrus passes the aforementioned sock, he leaves a sticky note for Sans (not wanting to encourage his behavior by picking it up).

It reads:
I KNOW THEY SAID TO MAKE YOURSELF AT HOME
SANS, BUT PLEASE DON'T MAKE FRISK'S HOUSE A MESS
BY LEAVING YOUR SOCKS ALL OVER THE PLACE!!

-PAPYRUS

Meanwhile, Asgore hears the call for breakfast. 'Ah, time to eat,' Asgore thinks to himself as he finishes watering the rest of the plants.

Toriel, however, is still sleeping peacefully on the recliner.

 

Filtering through the dining room door, Sans and Papyrus are the first to enter. The table sports scrambled eggs, hash browns, and plenty of toast. As Alphys and Undyne make their way in, however, they notice a particular lack of Toriel in the room; but assume she is in the kitchen. Asgore enters the room carefully, while Frisk runs up from behind him and takes their seat; fork at the ready, they are ready to devour their food and begin their day. They are, however, upset to find out that they will need to wait.

As Marceline is leaving the dining room, she tells the occupants "we will eat once everyone is present, please wait while I fetch Toriel."

"Okay mom, we can wait" Frisk says, placing their fork on their plate.

Conrad looks over to Frisk and asks "by the way Frisk, did you remember to make your bed?"

"Uh... heh... yes?" Frisk replies, not entirely sure.

"Make sure you double check after Breakfast."

"Yes sir..." Frisk says dejectedly.

A few minutes after, Marceline and Toriel walk in and take their places.

"Alright, everyone is here; you may eat."

No one needs any further encouragement to begin eating, least of all Frisk. Breakfast goes smoothly. As it's wrapping up, Alphys gets Conrad and Marceline's attention.

"Conrad? Marceline? I uh... I have a question, if that is OK."

"Of course" they say in almost eerie unison; it sends shivers down her spine.

"Would it be possible for there to be less... surprises... around the house?" Alphys asks nervously, not wanting to overstep some unspoken boundaries.

Marceline speaks up first, "I don't see why not, we keep them around as tradition and fun."

Conrad adds "we can't always be there for Frisk, so the surprises, tricks, and traps are so we can interact with them, in a sense, while we are away. Though with you all here, for however long you decide to stay, I am sure we can tone down our antics."

Conrad looks at Frisk, who nods.

"There you have it! We won't put as many 'surprises' around the house. Is there anything else you would like to bring up?"

"Uh, n-no, thank you."

"Of course, and remember, think of this as your house too; If anything bothers you, please let Marceline or I know."

"Thank you, C-conrad... and Marceline."

"Speaking of living arrangements," Toriel says, "What preparations need to be made to move monsters out from the Underground? I understand that land needs to be secured, but is there anything else?"

Conrad and Marceline look at each other, Marceline speaks to Toriel first. "We need to contact the Sanctum, they have the man-power needed to assist in securing a large area and moving you all out of the Underground..."

"But..." Conrad continues morosely as the couple look over to the rest, "the Sanctum has its fair share of problems too. If we move monsters to the Sanctum, instead of clearing land, they would be overwhelmed..."

"And because of that," Marceline continues, "we are afraid that they are not truly in the position to provide support. As it stands, they are hardly able to support themselves... They need new leadership, but no one is willing to accept anyone that steps forward."

Frisk contributes to the conversation. "Not to mention, the Sanctum is about 130 miles away... So, just sending word is going to take two days; that's with our best horse and rider."

Asgore considers the information, despondently replying "Golly... That is unfortunate news. I knew the war was devastating to monsters, but to see humans in such a position as the victors-"

Conrad cuts in "We were not the victors, Asgore. The Sages wisely tricked the king, ensuring your survival. They didn't expect the barrier to fail the way it did, but it did; only that horrible king and his followers can truly be blamed."

Toriel, apologetically, says "I am sorry... Is there any way we can help around the town at least?"

"There is, and any help will be greatly appreciated; you don't have to help if you don't want to, of course." Conrad assures her. "Perhaps it would be best if you went to the town hall and spoke with them about what help you can provide."

Alphys and Undyne, feeling like they should probably join the conversation, start to talk over each other before Alphys concedes to Undyne. "There are a ton of monsters in the underground, I bet we could help speed up building repairs or even add new stuff to the town!"

Alphys adds in, "yea! We could reinforce the wall, and even help set up a c-communications network! And we could... heh..." Alphys continues, feeling self conscious "...help come up with an a-alternative means of transportation..."

"That sounds wonderful," Conrad reassures her. "It would definitely help our survival if we had a way of communicating long distances. As it stands, all the old radio towers and power-lines are not working. Our manor has its own generator, which the rest of the town also uses but, beyond that, power is limited."

Before anyone else can speak, Marceline suggests "Asgore, if I understand correctly, you, being the king of monsters, should go to the town hall to discuss these matters."

Asgore responds, with a hint of embarrassment in his voice "Oh! Yes, I should, shouldn't I?... Frisk and I can do that after breakfast, if that is OK with you?"

Curiously, Marceline asks "I'm not sure why Frisk would need to go, but they are grounded for running off; savior of monsters or not, they knew better." Marceline gives Frisk a disappointed look, which Frisk reacts to by lowering their head.

Awkwardly Asgore responds, "Frisk agreed to be our ambassador to the humans, but I realize now that I should get your permission... I will not challenge your decision to ground Frisk, I would probably do the same if..." Asgore cuts off and looks down at his plate, saddened by horrible memories.

Marceline replies after waiting for a few moments, "thank you, Asgore... As for Frisk being the Ambassador, it is important to remember that Frisk is turning nine this year; a child needs an education, and time to grow."

"Of course, my apol-"

Marceline interrupts. "With that being said, -and please, forgive my interruption- I think Frisk will be an excellent ambassador."

Frisk smiles in an almost not subtle way. Asgore gives a relieved smile, in a significantly less subtle way.

Without missing a beat, Sans joins in "yea, i bet the kiddo will be an eggsellent ambassador too."

"IT IS TOO EARLY FOR BAD JOKES SANS!! CAN YOU AT LEAST WAIT UNTIL LUNCH OR SOMETHING?"

"what can i say" Sans shrugs, "i guess i'm a real boneafide addict."

"UHG! I AM NOT EVEN GOING TO DIGNIFY THAT WITH A RESPONSE!!... IGNORE THAT I SAID THAT! I AM NOT RESPONDING TO YOU!!"

Frisk, Toriel, and Conrad grin while watching the two skeleton brothers bicker about bad jokes; though he appears agitated, Papyrus is happy.

Conrad wraps up the conversation, "speaking of freeing all of monster kind, we still have to discuss making preparations for a celebration! I think that perhaps Asgore could talk to them about that while he is at the Town hall."

"Yes, I could do that. A celebration would help lift up our spirits... but we won't be able to bring all of monster kind. It wouldn't feel right with them still in the Underground..."

Conrad replies sympathetically, "ah yes that is a problem... we can always schedule the celebration for later then, when everyone is out!"

With no more jokes, and no one else speaking, the group of humans and monsters clean up the table and dishes; this time, Frisk does not manage to sneak out of doing chores. After letting their meals settle, everyone begins to split up and proceed with their plans for the day. Wanting to be more cautious, they inform each other before hand of their plans. Sans, Alphys, and Undyne are going back to Mt. Ebott to try to determine if there is a time discrepancy, Asgore is going to the Town hall with Papyrus in tow, Frisk is staying at home for mischievously disappearing, and Toriel is also staying. With everyone knowing where everyone will be, they go about their day.

 

Sans, Alphys, and Undyne leave the manor first. Though Sans normally uses shortcuts, he decides to stay with Alphys and Undyne in case trouble shows up; funny how suddenly having a reason to care causes you to put more effort into things, including the safety of others. They tell the guards where they are heading and then walk up the path to the mountain... Though still a wonderful sight, the party does not stop to smell the flowers. Their cautious observation of their surroundings gives them a new perspective of the area. Sans realizes that the walk down from the mountain yesterday was at least half an hour long, despite feeling shorter. As they begin to approach the lower entry into New Home Castle, Alphys asks a question.

"Sans, I know that we are returning to the mountain to c-check the whole time discrepancy thing... but how are you planning to actually do that?"

"what do you mean, alphys?"

"W-well... I mean the stone inside the mountain would have aged faster, of course, but i-if we were in some kind of... time loop or something... where we were living the same day or month over and over but we thought it was a different day each time."

Alphys pauses for a moment, before continuing. "What if the stone behind the barrier turns out to be the same age as the stone outside the barrier? I-I know that the trash from the river was floating into the Underground the whole time, b-but even that seemed to be... sporadic? Like it didn't always flow into the Underground... and it always seemed about the same age as other stuff that washed in... Like... two thousand years and it didn't get any more or less advanced..."

"welp, you've got a point there alphys. a few of them actually... you're quite pointy, heh. but i think we should take this one step at a time, don't you?"

Alphys sighs, "y-yea, I suppose you're right... Making too many theories can blind us from the truth when we find it."

"exactly." Sans gives Alphys a wink.

 Undyne comments "Ya know Sans... I agree with what you're saying, but did you have to slip a bad joke in?"

Sans shrugs, "at least we are getting close to the entrance now... we should set something up outside to track time, just in case."

Alphys pipes up "Oh! Since we won't need our phones, I can leave mine behind and start a t-timer on it... Just need to find somewhere discreet and protected from the weather..."

Undyne points up above the cave entrance to a crevice, "what about up there?"

"Yea, that would work... but how are we going to get it up there?" Alphys looks off into the tree line, hoping to find some way to make a ladder or something, and starts planning with Undyne.

Sans sneaks the phone out of Alphys' pocket with gravity magic while she and Undyne are distracted, starts a timer on his and Alphys' phones, and levitates Alphys' phone up to a crevice above the cave entrance.

With a smug grin Sans responds, "what do you mean alphys? it's already up there."

"No it-... Huh?..." Alphys, pats the pocket where her phone was. Having known Sans for a long time, stopped being confused very quickly and just went with it. "Well, OK then, let's get going..."

Perplexed, Undyne comments "You know, I don't think I've ever seen you use magic; but you always pull stuff like this off! How do you do that?"

"heh, trade secret."

The group of three walk through the entrance in silence. Undyne doesn't press for information. As they progress, they eventually enter the antechamber to the SOUL room. Looking beyond the archway that separates the antechamber from the SOUL room gives them an unexpected view. The stone in the SOUL room looks different than the stone in the antechamber, if only subtly.

At first the group thought it was just a matter of perspective, but Undyne concludes "Looking back, I thought the stone leading out of the Underground looked different because we had just been set free."

Alphys adds "I admit I didn't notice it immediately... M-my first assumption was the stone behind the barrier saw more use... but even the walls and ceiling look... different."

Sans examines the stone on the wall closer, "the only way to know for sure it to run some tests on it."

"R-right, um... we we still have all the geology equipment, I put it in s-storage."

"from the expansion project right?"

"Yes, it should still work... and if not I can fix it... Undyne, could you help me get the equipment, some of it is heavy."

"Sure Alphys, Lead the way!"

"while you two do that, i'll stay here and look at these stone walls."

"You mean, you are just going to stand there while me and Alphys do the heavy lifting?"

"Sans... y-you're already sedimentary, you don't need to practice."

"heh, good one... but i really don't think i can help with moving the equipment."

"Fine, but at least find a way to c-collect samples; ok?"

"sure thing." Sans winks as the two depart.

Looking between the chambers, Sans can clearly see the difference. He wonders if he was really so distracted that he didn't notice. When Alphys and Undyne are out of sight, Sans uses a 'shortcut' to get to the storage room, grab a hand-held core drill, and return. He begins taking samples, using gravity magic to speed up his drilling, from the walls of the SOUL room and antechamber. He mentally notes the difference in consistency. The samples from the SOUL room are older, though they look similar; they have collected more sediments than the stone in the antechamber. More layers tends to mean older, but science requires multiple tests. All this work just to verify the date on a calendar... Sans pockets the tool and verifies that his samples are organized properly and marks them... then he gets a text from Undyne.

From: StrongFish91 >
Sans we can't move all the equipment up there, it
needs power... but we don't have any extension
cords...

From: StrongFish91 >
You knew this already, didn't you!?

< To: StrongFish91
hey now, don't besmirch my good name.

< To: StrongFish91
i'm lazy for the sake of lazy.

< To: StrongFish91
i'll bring the samples over.
i got them a while ago.

Sans pockets his cellphone, collects the samples, and takes a shortcut to the Lab in Hotland. Just as big, square, and sterile white as before. Everything looks the way he remembers it from before Frisk did their thing. Hopefully they will be able to get everything sorted out, only then can monsters truly go free. Sans enters the Lab, and sees Alphys and Undyne setting up some machines at Alphys' now cleared desk. As Sans walks over Undyne looks up, but Alphys keeps her attention on setting up the machines.

Perplexed, Undyne comments "for someone so lazy you got here pretty fast, Sans..."

Alphys cuts to the point. "D-do you have the samples?"

"yea. where do you need 'em?"

"Set them on that tray... You marked them right?"

As Sans places the samples on the designated tray he replies," 'course I did."

"Hey so, I know this is all NERD CRAP... but how are you going to check how old they are?"

Alphys answers Undyne excitedly, "w-well! I am going to use radiometric dating t-t-to check to how old they are b-based on-" Alphys stops suddenly, realizing she is in hype-mode, and continues awkwardly "uh... heh... b-basically I'm going to crush a part of the samples and use the mass spectrometer to... uhh... shoot... lasers at the samples... heh."

"Huh... I didn't know you could use lasers to do that... it sounds AWESOME!"

'W-well! A-actually you... you can't do that... I just... It's hard to explain without getting complicated..."

Sans speaks up before Undyne can reply. "welp, the tests are going to take a while to finish, so i'm gonna go check on everybody. after all, we need to see how long everyone thinks we've been gone for, or if the time discrepancy stopped when the barrier fell."

Undyne and Alphys Sigh, almost in unison.

Alphys comments, "I don't know why I'm s-surprised, you always had a way of getting out of work... while getting into more... without actually doing any work..."

Sans shrugs while leaving the Lab and says "what can i say, it takes a lot of effort to do nothing... anyway, i'm headed out now."

 

Papyrus and Asgore leave the manor shortly after Sans, Alphys, and Undyne. The village was not particularly full, but plenty of people were out and about. As Sans' group left the village, Papyrus redirected all the attention from them to him and Asgore... Or he would have if not for Asgore's imposing and fluffy form. Most people run away when they see the duo, which is not a particularly favorable attitude for soon-to-be human friends to have towards one as great as Papyrus. Papyrus works to get the attention of the humans so that Asgore can go to the town hall and speak with the humans inside.

To do so, he stops in the middle of a clearing surrounded by log houses and yells:

"HELLO HUMANS!!! I AM THE GREAT PAPYRUS!!! AND I WOULD VERY MUCH LIKE TO ANSWER ALL YOUR QUESTIONS AND BECOME YOUR GREAT FRIEND!!!!"

A young boy speaks first. "Oh, uh... but I wanna talk to that big fluffy monster guy. What is his name?"

"OH!!! HE IS VERY BUSY, BUT HIS NAME IS ASGORE! HE IS THE KING OF ALL MONSTERS!! AND HE IS A REALLY GREAT GUY!"

The young boy responds curiously, "He is the king of all monsters? So... it's true? The barrier really was broken?"

"WHY YES HUMAN! THE BARRIER WAS BROKEN!!! IN FACT, IT WAS A HUMAN NAMED FRISK THAT BROKE IT! THEY ARE THE GREATEST!!!"

An older girl asks, incredulously "wait if they are the greatest, how are you "the great" Papyrus?"

"SIMPLE!! I AM GREAT, AND THEY ARE GREAT AS WELL!!! NYEH HEH HEH HEH!!"

Perplexed, the older girl asks "so wait... what makes you so great?"

"I THOUGHT YOU WOULD NEVER ASK!! I, THE GREAT PAPYRUS, AM JUST VERY GREAT. I HAVE ALWAYS BEEN GREAT!!! I AM SURE THAT AS YOU GET TO KNOW ME, YOU WILL SEE THAT!"

Another child asks, "hey, I heard that magic no longer exists; but monsters are made of magic, right? Does that mean you can do magic?"

"WHY YES LITTLE HUMAN! I CAN DO ALL SORTS OF MAGIC, THOUGH I PREFER BONE MAGIC. BECAUSE I AM A SKELETON."

The young boy responds with glee, "Coool! can we see!? can we can we can we!?"

"WHY, YES YOU MAY!! PREPARE TO BE UTTERLY AMAZED BY MY MASTERY OF MAGIC HUMAN FRIENDS, FOR I AM VERY GOOD AT MAGIC!!!"

Papyrus summons bones that spell out "COOL DUDE" from the ground, then summons bones in the air to create his face, and finally he creates blue/white "bone-works"  (bones imitating the explosions of fireworks) that shoot off into the sky. The children are mesmerized by the display... but screaming is heard in the distance, and Papyrus dismisses his bones. As he looks down from where he was summoning his magic, he sees that the scene has become very chaotic. Parents are grabbing their children -fearing that they will be hurt-, others are grabbing weapons to defend against a perceived threat... then someone tries to attack him. Brandishing a club, the assailant tries to strike Papyrus in the head; but it stops short.

A young man of Japanese descent, in basic padded armor, stops the club from making contact using a metal gauntlet on his left arm. He then swiftly steps forward with his right foot, while sweeping the club to the side with his arm, and strikes the mystery man on the side of his neck with his right hand, in one smooth motion. This causes the mystery man to collapse, as the sudden and dramatic change in blood pressure knocks him out.

Papyrus rushes to catch the assailant before they fall to the ground, and says "IS HE GOING TO BE OK!? THERE IS NO NEED FOR ANYONE TO DO A VIOLENCE!! THE GREAT PAPYRUS WILL NEVER HARM YOU!!"

Exasperated, the young man says "Yea, he'll be fine... but I swear to god, if this is another one of Frisk's pranks... Uhg... I still don't trust my helmet from last time!! Frisk where are you!?"

The commotion slowly dies down as three town guards approach the scene, two of them take the unconscious man away and one asks: "Squire Katsuro, what happened here?"

"Well, I am not sure if this is another one of Frisks pranks... but I'm realizing that it can't be... Frisk can't use magic..." Katsuro pauses for a moment, pondering... "Anyway, when I showed up a few people decided that Papyrus' impressive display was some elaborate attack or something; Derrick here tried to be a hero, so I KO'ed him before he could hurt anyone."

"First off, Frisk is grounded; didn't Bernard tell you? And secondly, are you sure the Skeleton wasn't attacking anyone? And thirdly... why... how did you think it was an elaborate prank!?"

Papyrus gasps, "I, THE GREAT PAPYRUS, WOULD NEVER HARM MY NEW HUMAN FRIENDS!!! I JUST WANTED TO SHOW THE LITTLE HUMANS MY VERY AWESOME AND COOL MAGIC!! ALSO... NO I AM NOT A PRANK, AND NEITHER IS MY MAGIC! NYEH!"

"Oh, right, I forgot Sir Bernard said that... Anyway, I'm on Papyrus' side, he wasn't trying to hurt anyone. ...I am not going to comment on the third question."

"Fine, but why did you Knock Derrick out; was that really needed?"

Katsuro pauses for a moment, then says. "I'm pretty sure his swing bruised my arm when I blocked his attack... who knows what would have happened to Papyrus' skull. I wanted to make sure that nothing else could happen before backup arrived."

"Ok, good enough, I suppose... I will let you off the hook this time."

"OH! I CAN FIX THAT HUMAN KATSURO, GIVE ME YOUR ARM AND I WILL HEAL YOU!!"

"You can do that!? Awesome! It won't hurt right?"

"NOPE! QUITE THE OPPOSITE!!"

Katsuro pulls off his bracer, pushes his sleeve up to reveal a bruise, and Papyrus puts his hand over Katsuro's arm; green bones shoot out from Papyrus' hand and collide with Katsuro's arm, healing the bruise.

Katsuro reacts excitedly "Wow! I feel ten times better now! Thanks Papyrus!"

"YOU ARE VERY WELCOME!!"

The other guard, witnessing the display, is still in awe. "We will decide what happens to Derrick when Bernard gets back; last I heard, he headed up to the mountain for some reason. Something about "ominous howling" last night, probably a wolf-type Wälder beast."

"Another one? Do we know if its pack is nearby? He didn't go alone did he?"

"No, it seems like it is just the one. And yea, he did, but the patrols have increased since the barrier fell yesterday; so he probably joined up with one of them."

"EXCUSE ME HUMANS, BUT... WHAT IS THIS... WALDER BEAST YOU SPEAK OF?"

Katsuro replies to Papyrus, "Oh, it's... how to put it... Well, the name means 'forests' beast; the plural is intended. They are creatures, usually wolves or stags, that have been twisted and mutated by some pretty nasty magic, then fused with various types of plant life... which somehow came to life. They can control the plants that grow on themselves, giving them devious attacks and highly effective camouflage while in the forests. Only way to spot them is to get nice and close during the day, while they're sleeping, or to watch an area for new plant life. They usually travel in packs resembling a small forest, but recently we've been seeing stragglers."

The other guard adds, "It could be the season, since spring is coming; They're usually spotted coming from the south-west."

"WELL, THOSE SOUND VERY NOT NICE, BUT MAYBE THERE IS A WAY YOU CAN TALK TO THEM OR SOMETHING? IF THEY ARE MONSTERS, I COULD TALK TO THEM FOR YOU!! I AM SURE IT IS JUST A MISUNDERSTANDING!"

Katsuro replies apologetically, "I'm sorry Papyrus, but these things attack first, eat later. No one can talk to them, I am not even sure they are capable of it."

Papyrus replies to Katsuro "THAT IS VERY UNFORTUNATE!" Then looks at the other guard and says "...BY THE WAY HUMAN, I NEVER GOT YOUR NAME!!"

The guard sheepishly responds "Oh yea! Heh... uh, my name is Kevin."

"IT IS NICE TO MAKE YOUR ACQUAINTANCE KEVIN!!"

"Same... So anyway, I should get going."

"See ya around Kevin."

The crowd has mostly dispersed by the time Kevin leaves, leaving Katsuro and Papyrus alone. Occasionally a curious person will show up, but they don't say anything.

"Anyway... Papyrus, I am assuming that you are staying at the Addams residence, right?"

"WHY YES!! IT IS A LOVELY AND SPOOKY HOUSE, AND FRISK'S PARENTS HAVE BEEN VERY WELCOMING!"

"That's good, the Addams family has always been on good terms with monsters... I think it's best if you head back there for now, people can only take so much excitement and awesomeness in one day."

"OH NO!!! HAVE I, THE GREAT PAPYRUS, BEEN TOO GREAT!? HAVE I BEEN SO AWESOME THAT MY NEW HUMAN FRIENDS COULD NOT HANDLE IT!?"

"Not exactly, I think just a few of them got a little over excited... it should be OK."

Papyrus sighs in relief "THAT IS GOOD!! I WILL HAVE TO TELL FRISK'S PARENTS NOT TO MAKE THE CELEBRATION TOO AWESOME!!! WE WOULD NOT WANT MORE PEOPLE GETTING OVER EXCITED AND DOING A VIOLENCE!"

"Heh, count on the Addams family to throw a celebration... I am sure it will be OK...  I think they are the only family that still knows how to have fun, actually..."

"THAT IS VERY SAD... THE GREAT PAPYRUS WILL FIX IT!!! I WILL SHOW ALL THE HUMANS HOW TO HAVE FUN AGAIN, AND THEY WILL LOVE ME AND BE MY FRIENDS!! NYEH HEH HEH HEH!!! I AM OFF NOW, FAREWELL HUMAN!!!"

"See ya around, Papyrus."

Papyrus leaves while Katsuro gives him an entertained but perplexed look, then returns to his post.

 

Asgore approaches the Town hall. It's a two story building made mostly of Oak logs with stone reinforcements. It seems to be shorter than other human buildings he remembers from before the war, probably to save resources. Entering the building is a bit more... awkward than anticipated. The doors, though wide, are a little too short. And the space for him to move within was also restricted... it is times like these where being a large, nine foot tall, fluffy boss monster (horns included) really doesn't help. The inside of the building is very utilitarian. The lobby has a large couch on one wall with a few chairs on the other, with a rug running down the center. The walls are sanded flat and painted, giving the rooms a larger feeling to them; though not quite large enough... Asgore hunches over slightly, to prevent his horns from damaging the ceiling, and walks carefully. Though unintended, his hunched over appearance makes him look menacing...

Upon his entry to the building, someone approaches Asgore.

She speaks timidly. "H-hello, Uh... how.. can I help you... Uh... Sir?"

"Howdy! I was hoping to speak with someone about what monsters can do to help around the village."

"O-oh! Uhhmm... You will want to speak with Lorenzo, he is in charge of development... OH, wait!! You need to speak with the Elder first, I think he would want to speak with you."

"Oh, alright then. Can you point me to the Elder?"

"Sure thing!... Actually, just follow me uhh... I... realize that I never got your name... Sorry."

The two begin walking and continue to talk.

"No worries! My name is Asgore, and may I ask for yours?"

"I'm Stacy... Uh... so Asgore, what was your role among the monsters... I see that you are wearing some rather fancy clothing, but monster politics are not my forte."

As the two walk through the town hall, some commotion goes on outside; they ignore it as they approach their destination... Asgore figures it is probably just Papyrus being over-the-top in trying to impress the humans.

"I am the King of monsters. What is your job among the humans, Stacy?"

"I-... I'm the head of resource management, I make sure things go where they are needed."

"I see, you must do a very good job."

Stacy blushes at the compliment, "I do my best... we are almost there, just need to-..." Stacy sighs, "the door is too small for you to fit through, I'm sorry."

"No worries! Perhaps some other arrangement can be made for me to meet the Elder?"

"Uhm... maybe, let me see if the Elder will meet you part way. One moment"

"Of course, take your time."

Stacy walks through the door and Asgore can just barely hear her speaking to someone but, not wanting to eavesdrop, he doesn't pay attention. After a few moments, Stacy walks back out.

"The Elder will meet you in the Lobby; but he needs to finish some work first. It will take a few minutes, is that OK?"

"That is fine, thank you Stacy."

"Of course! Would you like my to walk you back to the lobby King Asgore?"

"No that is fine, I think I remember how to get there."

"Alright, see you in a few minutes."

Stacy goes back into the Elder's office as Asgore returns to the lobby. Knowing politicians and officials, ...a few minutes could turn into half an hour. Asgore contemplates sitting on the couch... and decides to give it a try. Though it looks small, the couch was able to manage; he only takes up two seats. Getting himself comfortable, Asgore beings to wait...

 

Toriel stays at the manor because she wants to speak with Frisk's parents, and has nothing to do around the town or in the Underground. So, at the first opportunity, she speaks with them. She enters Conrad's office and sees Conrad at a large desk looking over documents, with an unlit cigar in his mouth; beside him is Marceline, handing him documents to view. There are two other seats in the room facing the desk, and a large bookshelf filled with old and damaged books is on the left side of the room.

"Excuse me, Conrad, Marceline. I was wondering if you two might have time to speak with me."

Conrad speaks first, "I'm not sure about my lovely wife, but I have nothing important to do. Dear?"

Marceline replies, "I've nothing to do, mon amour, except to feed the Venus fly traps later. What would you like to speak with us about?"

"I would like to be filled in on what has happened with the Addams family since the war, I would also like to talk about Frisk."

Conrad responds, "we will fill you in to the best of our ability... Cigar?"

Toriel declines.

"Very well, I am going to have one if that's OK with you; I won't light it though, wouldn't want to be rude."

"That is fine, this is your house after all."

"Well, I would like you to consider this your house as well... I have seen how you look at Frisk, you have lost a child, haven't you?"

Toriel clutches her hand to her chest... but doesn't respond.

Understandingly, Conrad replies "... well, lets begin with what happened after the war. Mi amor, I think I can explain this part, would you mind getting us some drinks?"

"Of course dear, anything in particular?"

"Not from me, what about you Toriel?"

"Some tea if you have it..."

"Of course, I'll be back in a few minutes." Marceline says as she leaves the room gracefully.

"Now... I am sorry for your loss, it is never easy... We have all seen... no we have all seen more than our fair share of loss. I understand. Let me describe what happened with the Addams family after the war, as best as I can. Then, when Marceline returns, we can discuss Frisk."

"Thank you, Conrad." Toriel says as she takes a seat.

"It is no bother... Now. After the war, everything was in chaos. The Addams family did everything they could to support monsters before and during the war, so we were also one of the first targeted. We survived of course... According to my grandparents, my great granddad Gomez truly did live up to the family credo... 'Sic Gorgiamus Allos Subjectatos Nunc,' which translates to 'We Gladly Feast on Those Who Would Subdue Us.' I am not sure if they meant literally, but it was more than likely a means to put fear in the hearts of any who went against us. As it stands now, it's a tradition to have a picnic on the graves of our enemies. I think that is a suitable alternative to cannibalism... Anyway, the Addamses were not entirely unscathed, my Father was the only one who survived; his parents sent him to the Sanctum for safety. That is where he met his lovely wife. It wasn't until much later, however, that they even truly met; but even as a young lad, he knew the moment he saw her... When the Elders asked for volunteers for a large project, and said what their plans were, my parents were the first to raise their hands. How could they not, though? It was perfect. My father was the heir to the manor, and the magi needed a base of operations until a settlement could be set up. The fact that the monsters had allowed the Addams family to build a manor here, well it shows how close they were... Though, nowadays some would say that me being an heir doesn't matter. That now everything should just belong to everyone and there is no point in claiming land..."

Conrad stands from his chair, turns around, opens the curtains, and looks out to the backyard before he continues. "But this land is not just... land! This land is my families entire life, this land is where my great great great great grandfather, and his grandfather, were buried! This land was rightfully conquered, claimed, and has been lived on by my family for centuries!" Conrad pauses and turns around before continuing. "No one, and I mean no one, will ever take it from us!..."

Marceline enters the room with a tray, and raises an eyebrow at her husband.

Conrad, seeing this, realizes his error and feels embarrassed for his outburst. "Pardon me..."

Conrad sighs and sits back down. "I'm... sorry about that, I got a bit carried away... let me continue where we left off... My parents assisted in setting up the village around our manor. The village relied on fire for a while for heat, light and cooking, until my parents managed to get the generator working. Right now it works by burning wood or coal, but it used to burn gas. It was quite the undertaking, but it gave the village a chance to survive. In the winter, they would gather within the manor... Now that monsters are free, the Addams family can finally rejoice with our monster friends... And, well, that brings us up to the present; aside from the issues Frisk, my love, and I have had personally."

Toriel, though a little uncomfortable from the outburst, thinks on the information she has been given. "So, you are all that is left of the Addams family then?"

Conrad replies somewhat mournfully, "yes. Unless Marceline and I have a son, the Addams family name will end with me."

In her typical mysterious voice, laced with amusement, Marceline replies "that is ridiculous mon amour. You know as well as I do that if Frisk ever decides to get married, their partner would take on our name. We do not need another child to keep the family name going, though that is not out of the question. As much as I adore the Addams family, after all I married into it, there is no need to fuss about a name as long as the values are there."

Conrad, feeling a bit amorous, replies. "Yes, of course. You are right, mi amor! How could I be so blind!"

Conrad passionately kisses his wife, and the display of affection makes Toriel think back on her time with Asgore... before they separated... Things will never get better between them, especially not for such a trivial thing as passion, but that doesn't mean she doesn't miss the monster she used to love; it doesn't mean she doesn't miss Gorey, king Fluffybuns... After a moment, Toriel clears her throat in the subtle-yet-commanding way that she has practiced; having been a queen and mother.

Conrad replies bashfully "Oh dear, pardon me... You wanted to talk about Frisk next, yes?"

"Yes, that is correct; if you still have time?"

Marceline replies, "of course we have time Toriel, my husband just forgot his manners..." and then gives her husband a sly look, which causes Conrad to smile.

Marceline continues, "I have brought you some herbal tea Toriel, I hope you like it; I picked the leaves this morning."

Toriel accepts the cup and replies "Oh, why thank you." before taking a sip. It's golden flower tea...? There is another taste mixed in though, She is more OK with it than she expected.

Seeing her subtle confusion, Marceline responds. "It's Golden flower tea with mint, very good if I don't say so myself."

"Yes it is wonderful, thank you..."

Conrad reaches for what he thinks is his cup, and Marceline swats his hand, "that one is mine, here, this one is yours."

"You tease! Thank you dear. Would you like to speak with Toriel about Frisk, mi amor, or would you prefer me to?"

"I will speak to her dear, mother to mother; don't you think that is best?"

"If you think it is best mi amor, then I think it is best! I will keep myself busy unless you need me."

As Conrad returns to his paperwork, Marceline sets the tray down and takes a seat facing Toriel. "So, what about Frisk would you like to talk about Toriel?"

"I was wondering what their home life is like, but now that I am here I have been able to see it first hand... so I was wondering if, perhaps, I could take part in their education?"

"Hmm, well I don't see why not. We will, of course, need to approve of the lessons; but I see no harm in it. Plus, Frisk seems to really care about you and you seem to really care about Frisk. If there is anyone I would want to have teaching my child, it is someone who genuinely cares for them. Is there anything else?"

"Yes actually... I will be honest, I didn't know what to expect when I met you... but getting to know you has been such a pleasure. I know that you all have your quirks, so I was wondering... why the tradition of setting up traps around the house? Isn't that... a bit too dangerous?"

"Dearest, perhaps this particular question is best suited for you."

Conrad puts his papers down and replies, "oh, yes, of course my dear; family history is quite important to me, just keep an eye on me so I don't go... overboard" Conrad winks at his wife.

Conrad adjusts in his chair and begins to speak. "Before the war, people would try to sneak into the manor. So, in response, the Addams family set up tricks and traps around the manor to fool and trap the invaders; until they could be escorted out. This routine became a part of us to the extent that every family member was familiar with making and setting up traps and tricks... So, to answer your question, yes and no. It is dangerous at first, just as many things in life are, but once acquainted it is no different than the puzzles monster-kind use to employ before the war, what with death pits and the like... We, of course, never turned to death pits; we couldn't get them approved..."

Marceline responds, somewhat sullenly, "Yes that was quite a shame, really."

Toriel responds, "I see... Well, I suppose I cannot argue against something that has such a long family history backing it... as long as Frisk is safe."

Conrad energetically replies "Don't worry, Toriel, when Frisk was a tyke she and..." before cutting off and looking away with a distant and sad look on his face.

Marceline moves over to her husband and puts her hand on his back before taking over, explaining "Frisk had a twin brother, they were inseparable... but he... One of the village children did not take very well to one of his practical jokes, and they lashed out... it was an accident, I know... but it was so painful to learn what had happened... he was only five years old..."

Tears well up in Marceline's eyes as she remembers the day she lost her child, her husband stands up and wraps his arm over her to provide comfort... Toriel looks to the ground, feeling empathetic.

Softly, Toriel says "I didn't mean to cause you to think about your lost child, I am very sorry..."

Conrad speaks up as Marceline dabs her eyes with a cloth before trying to regain her composure. "No worries, Toriel, we were going to have to talk about it sooner or later... And if not to you, then to Frisk eventually. There is no way we will be able to hide the truth forever."

Marceline takes a breath, and Conrad excuses himself before she begins to speak. "Frisk and Charley loved exploring the house, trying to figure out the tricks and traps... Now that Frisk is older, that same passion burns within her. We always make sure that what she makes is safe. The reason we don't stop her is because, in the end, we don't want to prevent her from being creative; even if she is just making traps now... well, who knows what the future holds? It is up to us, as her parents, to ensure that she decides to use her talents in productive ways. But it is also our responsibility to ensure her childhood is fun, and safe."

Toriel, still a bit sad and feeling hesitant, replies "I see, you do make a valid point. It would be a shame to stop Frisk from expressing themself, just because I am worried... I understand that you make sure they are not too dangerous, but I suppose I still have reservations about it... But, as long as Frisk is happy and unharmed, I cannot argue against the results. This leads me to another question, however."

"Yes?"

Conrad enters the room again, and hands his wife a handkerchief before sitting down at his desk.

Toriel continues to ask her question after Conrad sits. "Frisk has quite impressive reflexes, is that because of growing up surrounded by traps or...?"

Conrad lightens up and a smile finds itself on his face as he replies, "May I answer this question love?"

Marceline replies to her husband with a smile, "you may."

Excitedly, Conrad continues. "When Frisk turned six she went to Bernard and demanded that he train her to be a true 'anime-warrior-princess.' At first he refused, but Frisk is really... determined; and he couldn't say no to her signature 'cute face.' Frisk's reflexes are a result of his careful training... Marcy and I are hoping that Frisk doesn't grow to be any more mischievous than she already is, or it would be rather... troublesome."

Toriel suppresses a giggle as several of Frisk's possible 'cute faces' flood her mind, and her face lights up in glee at the thought of one so adorable that it would break a grown man.

"Pardon me," Toriel says, with a hint of amusement. "I certainly hope not as well. I will leave you to your work now, and... I am sorry, again, for bringing up painful memories."

Marceline responds, as she walks out with Toriel. "No worries, you couldn't have known."

Toriel finds her way to the library, on her way there, she can hear Papyrus returning from his adventure and begin making promises of Spaghetti... Marceline offers to help.


Sans returns to the Lab after having spoken with several monsters and going to the dump. None of the monsters think Sans has been gone more than a day, which is good. It answers questions, at least. Sans doesn't need the samples to confirm that time in the underground was different than the surface, he could tell... If it weren't for the fact that he prefers to work alone, and make sure know one knows he is doing it, he wouldn't have left Alphys and Undyne with that useless task... but the added confirmation won't hurt anything. It also gives Alphys time to think about branching the UnderNet out to the surface, which they need pretty bad right now. His trip to the dump also confirmed that time wasn't flowing right, most of the trash is from the same year; probably a result of the human cities falling. Why the trash was spread out over two thousand years, however, is another question.

Sans enters the Lab "hey, i'm back. you find anything interesting?"

Alphys is the only one in the room, she replies. "Not particularly, I was hoping I would find some other clues but I just confirmed that the rock inside the SOUL room is significantly older than the rock in the antechamber... How did your work go?"

"i didn't find anything you didn't, no one thinks we have been gone for more than a day. and i resent that comment, i wasn't working."

"Huh, so whatever happened... it was only in effect while the barrier was up. I wonder why?"

"well, i don't think we are going to figure it out by sampling more rocks. we should take a different approach... but first, maybe we should think about getting some quality of life improvements to the surface."

"Oh! Yes that would be a g-good idea, maybe... maybe I can extend the Cell and UnderNet networks out onto the Surface, or just start a new one?"

"yeah, that could work. want any help?"

Alphys was caught off guard by Sans' remark. "You want to help set up the network?... Well... I don't see why not, you did help set it up in the first place."

"well then it is settled, let's get to it."

After several hours of working, Sans and Alphys make a device that can operate without access to a direct connection to the CORE. It is a bit bulky, however, and so they need Undyne to help lift it. The device, a mostly Cylindrical three by 4 foot object that is easy to draw, will unpack and extend when activated. After extending it will attempt to connect to the UnderNet/Cell networks through a series of relays, which has yet to be created. With access to the UnderNet and Cell networks, they can more easily inform the other monsters of how things are going; as well as keep contact with each other in case of emergency. Undyne went and grabbed some food for the trio while they were working. A couple hours after they finalize and move the broadcasting antenna, they finalize the relays. The relays are then set up along the walls, starting from the Throne room and leading out to the Surface entrance. It only takes about an hour to set them up and test them, thanks to Sans' shortcuts. When they exit the Underground, Sans gets Alphys' phone and pulls up his for a comparison. Both phones read the same time, and the timers are within microseconds of each other; just as expected.

By the time the group beings to leave, it's starting to get dark; they consider staying in the Underground for the night, but they decide against it. It's no good to have someone come looking for them and be in danger. With the easily drawable cylindrical object strapped to her back, Undyne is moving slower than usual. Alphys assists from behind, helping hold it up as much as she can, while Sans watches for danger. It's too heavy for him to use gravity magic on. Everything is going smoothly, despite having to move slower because of how heavy the device was; but beyond that they are making good time... until they begin to hear rustling in the bushes.

Chapter Text

The day is passing by faster than Bernard expected, it is already evening. Even so, he still feels hot in his armour, and the broadsword on his left hip feels heavy. The sun is low in the sky and the chirping of cicadas is growing louder, drowning out the sound of crickets. This is always one of the worst times of year for the village, the high amount of noise at night lets Wälder beasts sneak up on them. Scouting parties have to be sent out to track the beasts' moments and predict where they will migrate, one of those parties is nearby. Bernard begins to approach the Scouting party, making sure his presence is known; wouldn't want an accident. They are in an area with a heavy amount of shrubs and other foliage, because it is easier to hear the rustling of leaves than to spot the creatures.

As Bernard meets up with the active scout patrol, the leader informs him of some bad news.

"Sir Ward, we've confirmed the reports; there is a forest headed towards the village from the mountain in the South West. From what we could tell it's about the size of the village itself, the largest in years."

Bernard sighs, then opens his helmet's visor to speak. "I told you to stop calling me Ward, Anthony... As for your report, any news on the sounds heard near the village last night?"

"Nothing concrete Sir... Bernard, but we found traces near Ebott Mountain not long ago; though we are not sure what made them."

Katsuro appears and joins the conversation. "That is always the case with Wälder beasts, isn't it?"

Anthony replies "Yes, but these look like they may have had tracks mixed in, possibly villagers trying to hide their tracks. Has anyone left the village recently?"

Bernard replies, somewhat worried, somewhat thoughtful. "Yes... actually. Three monsters from Frisk's group left the village to investigate something. You didn't find any signs of a fight, did you?"

"No, we lost the trail not far from here."

Bernard calmly replies. "Alright, head back to the village and prepare our defences; and while you do, drop by the Addams' Manor and see if the monsters can help. I'm going to take Squire Katsuro and join with the monster group."

Anthony and his team leave Bernard and Katsuro behind, heading for the village.

Katsuro asks "Sir Bernard, why are we going to group up with the monsters?"

Stoically Bernard asks, "Squire... young Squire, do you have the time?"

Katsuro replies with a confused tone "Well, Sir, by the position of the sun, I would say it is near dinner time."

In a disappointed tone with a serious face he looks at Katsuro, Bernard replies, "wrong, squire it's..." then closes his visor. "Knight time."

Katsuro Sighs in exasperation.

Bernard takes on a serious tone. "In all seriousness, it 's getting dark and that means the beasts will wake soon. We need to provide the monsters with backup; they are not familiar with the dangers."

"Oh, right. Well, bad jokes aside, lead the way."

Bernard and Katsuro head up Mount Ebott, staying close to the path but out of sight. The entrance to the Underground is just a few minutes away from where they are, but as they approach Bernard stops. Down the path, towards the village, they see the monster group. Two of them are carrying a three foot by four foot Cylinder that looks like it's easy to draw, and the skeleton is watching for danger. On the other side of the path, however, Bernard sees unnatural movement following behind them; leaves dancing in an intangible wind.

In a whisper, Bernard says "Get down, stay quite... Something isn't right here."

Katsuro responds in kind "I see the monster group, what's wrong?"

"There is a Wälder beast stalking them, do you see it? Branches and leaves growing and moving faster than they should?"

"What should we do?"

"You will get ahead of the monster group and attack from the side."

"And you?"

Before Katsuro gets an answer, Bernard leaves and positions himself behind the monster group.

The two crouch behind the foliage, moving carefully and staying hidden from view.  The wolf-like beast begins preparing its attack. Bernard jumps out from the foliage, and onto the path, as the beast makes it's play. In a single attack, the beast tangles up the two carrying the easy to draw cylinder, and the third is knocked over; the skeleton's reflexes save it, but the attack continues wider than expected. Bernard sprints forward and swifty draws his broadsword, cutting through the branches holding the monsters, as Sans begins attacking it with bone magic. The beast evades Sans' attack while shooting darts at the group. The two monsters still encased in branches are fine. Katsuro is not as lucky, however, and his leg is hit. Sans avoids them easier than work. From the side, Katsuro runs up to the beast -while it is focused on Sans- and swiftly draws his blade, cutting into the branches that make up its form. The beast howls in agony, and Bernard sprints forward to follow up Katsuro's attack with a lunge; he plunges deep into the mass of branches. The beast falls silently to the ground and golden flowers begin to bloom as it stills, leaving a sickly sweet aroma. Alphys and Undyne don't seem to notice, but Sans does; he keeps it to himself.

Sans is the first to speak up. "good timing, we could have been done for."

As Katsuro removes the thorn from his leg and begins breaking away the branches around the two monsters, Bernard replies. "Our scouts reported possible traces of a Wälder beast, I concluded that you may have been stalked up the mountain and came to check."

"makes sense... i would ask how you managed to sneak up on us, but you weren't the only one." Sans looks at where the beast lays for a moment.

"I actually wouldn't mind explaining that, at the village of course. Undyne, Alphys, how are you?"

Undyne and Alphys groan, Alphys rubs her head and Undyne her side. Undyne speaks first, "could be better... looks like that thing broke the straps we were using to haul this thing."

Bernard looks over at the not easy to write about cylinder and asks, "what is it?"

Alphys enters hyper-nerd mode. "Oh! Its actually an antenna that we are going to s-s-set up at the village to extend the Undernet and CELL n-networks to the surface!"

Not understanding, but genuinely curious, Bernard asks "oh? What will that do for us?"

"Oh Uh... I-it is a device that talks to other devices from a distance... to t-talk to other... devices......." Alphys is more shaken up than she thought, her mind is starting to go all over the place now... "Sans c-can you explain?"

Undyne helps Alphys calm down now that the initial rush is gone, while Katsuro bandages his leg.

"sure alphys," Sans replies. "it will let us talk to the monsters in the underground. i also brought some spare cell phones for the guard to use, it'll help organize your defence efforts."

Very keen on that idea, Bernard replies "that sounds fantastic. We'll have to learn how to use them effectively, and as soon as possible... I have bad news."

Undyne pipes up "if you are gonna say that more of those things are on the way, NGAHHHHHHHH!! I SWEAR I WILL SUPLEX MOUNT EBOTT!!!"

Bernard moves to the cylinder, relieved with how feisty the fish monster is after the attack. "Lets get this to the village, I'll explain on the way there."

While Undyne Suplexes a boulder near the path to burn off some steam, Sans replies. "sounds good. and don't worry about her."

Bernard is impressed. When Undyne returns, she and Bernard carry the esoteric Cylinder. Sans and Alphys walk on the sides of the party while Katsuro takes the lead. They begin heading to the village, it is almost dark out.

Despite the oppressive feeling from the potential of danger, the group walks silently down the peaceful forest path. Occasionally they pause and switch out who is carrying the device, Sans never carries it; but Bernard is OK with this. Bernard saw Sans' reflexes and, if anything will give them an edge against another attack, Bernard wants that advantage. Bernard informs the monsters of the oncoming danger, explaining that the creatures are various types of wild life that were affected by the magic from the barrier; and how, in close enough proximity, they act like a hive mind. Near the end of their trek back to the village, Bernard suggests that a third person help carry the device. From that point on the party continued to make good progress. It is dark out now.

With a grin on his face, Sans looks up at Bernard and asks "hey, bernard, what time is it?"

To which Bernard huffs in amusement and replies. "Knight time. I already made that joke Sans, sorry."

"heh. well, can't blame a guy for trying."

"We're approaching the Village... Does this need to be behind the walls or...?"

Alphys answers. "Y-yes, if it isn't it might get damaged. It is currently packed, but when it is set up it will be much thinner and less sturdy"

"I see... Well, at least we are close. Alphys, you can switch out with Squire Katsuro, take a break."

"O-oh OK... t-thank you."

Undyne is intrigued by the prospect of a knight and squire, so she asks "squire huh? So Bernard does that mean you are a Knight?"

Bernard replies "technically no. But... also yes? We don't have any kings, after the Great War people went up in arms against anyone who declared themselves King. We have Elders instead, elected leaders that have passed certain trials and were proven to be wise; at least, as wise as the trials are concerned."

"Huh, so does that mean anyone can be a knight?"

"No, not at all. You have to be knighted by the Elder. That is why it is a yes/no answer. I was knighted, but not in the traditional way."

"Oh OK, that is still pretty sweet though! Hey, so who trained you?"

"The last Martial arts master, and his rival, the last Kendo master; the Martial arts master was master of several fighting styles, but I never bothered to learn their names. The Last Kendo master is one of the few of Japanese descent I have met, though I know there are more in the Sanctum."

"That's awesome! It's just like ANIME! I can't believe Frisk said Anime wasn't real! So do you offer lessons or anything?"

"Not currently, no. I spend most of my time training Katsuro, he is my Squire after all."

"Oh... bummer. Well, if you ever get time I would love to learn!"

Bernard pauses thoughtfully... "Hmm, well I don't see any harm in you watching his lessons... but keep in mind that I am training him, so I can't help you as readily."

"REALLY!? THAT IS FREAKING AWESOME!! I CAN'T WAIT TO TELL FRISK! I AM GONNA BE THE BEST ANIME-WARRIOR EVER!! FUHUHUHUHUH!"

Bernard chuckles.

They approach the gate and see two armoured guards, where previously two in padded armour were, Bernard speaks to one of them. "Johnathan, take my spot carrying this thing."

Johnathan replies hesitantly, "Uh. Alright, Sir Bernard; where are we taking it?"

Alphys answers. "T-the center of the Village would be a good location, that will give us even coverage."

"Alright then. Are you going to the Addams', Sir Bernard?"

"Yes, I am. I won't be gone for long."

As Johnathan assists the monsters in taking the device to the center of the town, Bernard heads to the Addams residence. Once there, they begin to unpack the antenna. The main pole segments uncurl into a roughly 50ft pole and lock together, four tethering cables are set up to keep it stable. Several leaf shaped antennas unfold near the top and lock into place. The base is a three foot wide cylindrical prism, part of it is flat and has a screen and a panel below it; Alphys moves the panel to reveal a keyboard and begins typing. With the Antenna all set up, Sans checks his phone for reception, it all checks out.

Sans sends Papyrus the knight time joke, and chuckles at the explosive response from his brother.

"we're good to go, it's all set up and working."

Alphys responds while closing the panel and turning off the screen. "Alright, t-that is good. The Less problems we have from here on out, the b-better."

Johnathan, curiously asks "what is this thing?"

Alphys responds, making sure to keep her hyper-nerd in check. "I-it will allow us to communicate with the monsters in the underground. Sans also brought some Cell phones to help the guard coordinate defences."

"Oh? That will come in handy... So where are these 'cell phones?'"

Sans pulls out an old cell phone that has had other cell phone parts attached to it. "right here, i am going to give them to bernard to hand out as he sees fit."

Katsuro responds to Sans, saying "I can take those to Bernard for safe keeping, we can go over how to use them tomorrow; if that is OK with you."

Sans pulls out four Cell phones and hands them to Katsuro. "sure thing, here ya go. don't drop them."

Taking the devices, Katsuro thanks Sans and heads off.

Cautiously curious Johnathan replies. "Huh, interesting... I should probably head back to my post, actually." Before heading off in the wrong direction.

Sans notices and asks, while pointing to the south east gate, "isn't your post that way?"

Johnathan is flustered "Oh! uh. We were about to rotate out, so I am actually going to my new post." He chuckles awkwardly.

Sans shrugs "alright, if you say so."

Johnathan heads off. The three monsters look around the center of the village. It's a fairly large clearing and looks like it's used by kids, and adults, for all sorts of things. Signs will have to be put up to keep the curious from causing problems. At least they can speak to the monsters in the Underground now, that will make everything easier... which reminds Alphys to send a message to the Underground to warn them, so that they have time to set up a barricade to keep out the Aberrant creatures. The group heads off to the Addams' Manor to inform them of their findings and get a night of well earned rest. Dinner is already prepared for them and in the fridge, apparently everyone else is already sleeping. Sans heads into the kitchen and gets the food, there is a note with it. It reads:

"TO: SANS, UNDYNE, AND ALPHYS.
MARCELINE AND I MADE YOU
SPAGHETTI!! I HOPE YOU LIKE IT!!
SHE SHOWED ME A LOT OF NEW
WAYS TO MAKE IT!!! SHE MAY BE
JUST AS GREAT AS ME!!

-PAPYRUS"

Sans chuckles softly, and grabs the plates of spaghetti. The group eats their meal, it's delicious. When they are done, they split up and head to their rooms quietly.

Sans makes his way to his bedroom, right next to Papyrus', and steps in. Flicking on the light reveals a small child. Frisk is inside waiting for him.

"sup kiddo, shouldn't you be in bed?"

"Uh... yea, but I knew you were gonna go right to bed and I couldn't wait any longer. Did you figure it out?"

"huh?"

"The time japes."

"heh, not quite. but you were right, it seems. we've done all we can for now though."

"The History book says an Artifact was used to make the Barrier, maybe finding it might help?"

"yea, that could. you happen to know where it is?"

"...the only Artifact I found was absorbed by an annoying dog."

"weird. small and white?"

"Yea! how'd you know?"

Sans winks. "i could feel it in my bones."

"Pfff, that was lazy even for you."

Sans shrugs. "well, kid, i am bone-tired. how 'bout we do this talk to-marrow?"

Frisk giggles quietly. "Sure, see ya later Sans."

"see ya kiddo."

As Frisk silently leaves, Sans thinks to himself 'what a little trouble-maker... sneaking around hiding in other people's rooms, in the dark no less. heh. what a dork.'

Sans takes the hand-held core drill out of his pocket and places it on the night stand next to his bed, must have forgotten it. He pulls out his Cell and checks for messages, none. Undernet is buzzing with activity though, seems like everyone is excited about what the future holds. A lot of them are upset that they can't leave the Underground, understandable... He flings a zinger out onto the UnderNet to his followers, the chat switches from impatient brooding to laughter and self perpetuating jokes; his job is done. Now to sleep. He checks under his bed for a "surprise," then lays down.

Frisk lays their head down on their pillow, and begins to slowly drift to sleep. The night is calm, the bugs are annoying, the stars are bright... Frisk drifts off.

* UNINTELLIGIBLE WHISPERS ECHO IN THE VOID...
"...F...S...r...a...i...H...v...s...i...k...e...m..."
* FRISK DOESN'T SLEEP WELL.

 

Frisk's Cell reads: 8:15 A.M. March 27th, 2045 | No messages
Their alarm didn't go off, weird since it is Monday.
'Oh, it was snoozed. That makes sense.' Frisk thinks to themselves.

Frisk feels something in their pockets, then tries to remember what they left in the dimensional boxes... They can't remember.

Frisk checks their Pockets and Dimensional boxes:
Pockets: BadMemoryx8
Box A: Dream x10
Box B: SnowPiece, HushPupe, DogResidu x8

Frisk doesn't remember having Bad Memories in their pockets... Oh well. Frisk puts the dreams into their night stand, and the Bad Memories into Box A.

The morning goes on much as usual. Frisk changes, flails around while avoiding the previous night's shenanigans (though, there are less now), and everyone goes to eat breakfast. Today, oatmeal is served with a side of hash browns. With everyone gathered in the Dining room, they begin to talk about the previous day; mostly for the benefit of the group that went to the mountain. Papyrus starts off the conversation, telling Sans about how some of his new human friends got over excited by his greatness; and how one almost did a violence against him, but Katsuro stopped him. No one is particularly happy to hear that Papyrus was attacked, even if he is unharmed. A few moments of uneasy silence pass.

Frisk begins to loudly proclaim, in the best authoritative voice an eight year old can muster:

"HEAR YE HEAR YE!!! With the aid of Sir Daddums and Dame Mommy, I have decided the theme of the celebration, which shall take place when King FLUFFYBUNS' nation sees the light of day!!! The theme shall be... THE MONSTER MASH!! All Monsters are here by requested to come as themselves, and all Humans are required to wear costumes, or be sentenced to Dog Residue costumes!!!"

The group lightens up from Papyrus' disturbing news.

Asgore begins speaking. "Well, in regards to the celebrations they will have to wait for quite a while. I am sure you have all heard by now, but there is a... forest of creatures headed our way; and from what I understand, they are not friendly. With that in mind, the Elder informed me of what Monsters can do to assist the village; and with the help of some of those in the Underground, the village... might survive. They would just leave, but they do not have the means to do so quick enough."

Asgore clears his throat before continuing. "I have coordinated with several officials, and worked out a way to allow some monsters to move up to the surface early; they will stay with any human willing to house them. There will also be more monsters here, in the Mansion, thanks to the Addams family's generosity."

Undyne asks "what sort of things are we going to help with? Defence, building, nerd stuff?"

"All of the above, monsters are asked to do anything they can. We have planned a second defensive wall, to divert the creatures away from the village rather than try to fight them. Apparently, when they are close enough to each other, they form a limited hive mind; attacking one would get the attention of all of them. So it is either we kill them all or we kill none of them. I would much rather kill none of them, if possible."

Sans speaks up, "hey asgore, did they mention that these creatures bloom golden flowers when they die?"

Asgore responds, calmly, "yes, and it is to my understanding that Marceline has been performing experiments on them, to find their properties. So far, beyond making a good tea, they do not seem harmful."

"well, as long as they are safe..."

"The villagers burn them every spring, many think that they are dangerous or may be how the creatures spread. I would disagree, but they didn't survive this long by taking unnecessary risks."

Alphys speaks up. "S-so do we know which monsters are g-going to move here?"

"Yes, we will need the Dog clan here -I am sure they will be received well- and Ice Wolf is needed too. Some of the Vegitoids may be helpful with increasing the growth in the farmland. We will need the Royal Guard as well, it looks like we won't be disbanding it after all; at least, not yet. Washua, Muffet, Mettaton, and Vulkin will also be needed. So, all in all we will be moving... about 32 monsters. 33 if Napstablook is willing to help."

Sans replies. "so, not many humans are willing to house monsters huh?"

"Actually, more could be brought, but Toriel and I have worked on the numbers; we think this is the optimal number of monsters. Not so many that people are scared and decide against it, but not so few that we are not helpful."

Toriel nods.

"well, in light of all this news sharing... alphys you wanna share what we found?"

Alphys reluctantly replies, having been too busy playing footsie with a certain fish. "Uh, s-sure... We discovered that, for one or more unknown reasons, t-time in the Underground was significantly different than time on the surface. Almost like it was accelerated. From what we c-can tell, this stopped when the barrier was broken."

"they kid told me that some artifact was used to make the barrier, and the only one they found was absorbed by that annoying dog."

Alphys is frustrated. "F-figures! If we could find t-that artifact we might learn what happened."

Papyrus bellows out in displeasure "THAT LOATHESOME SCOUNDREL! IT TAKES EVERYTHING THAT DOESN'T BELONG TO IT!!! I AM SURPRISED IT IS NOT CALLED... A TERROR!! BECAUSE IT TERRORIZES ME ALL THE TIME, STEALING MY ATTACKS!"

Sans chuckles, "it's a bone-glar."

Papyrus becomes even more visibly frustrated, "SAAAAAAANS!! IF YOU ARE GOING TO MAKE A JOKE, AT LEAST PUT A LITTLE MORE... BACKBONE INTO IT! NYEH HEH HEH!!!"

After the skeleton brothers trade puns, everyone finishes breakfast. The group decides that it would be best to notify the monsters when they have somewhere to stay. No one feels a need to leave the mansion. Asgore tends to the Greenhouse, Alphys works in the lab on random experiments, Undyne asks Conrad for fencing lessons, Toriel and Marceline read in the library -putting Frisk's school work together-, Frisk works on their homework as fast as possible, Sans is no where to be found, and Papyrus practices the new spaghetti making techniques he learned. After a few hours, Bernard comes by with some of the village guards; Alphys works with them and teaches them how to use the Cell phones. They leave shortly after.

 

In a secluded part of the village, two men meet together.

???1 "Can you believe it? They set up that thing in the middle of town, apparently it'll let them all talk to the monsters in the underground."

???2 "So they are just infiltrators? Does that mean they are collecting information about our defences, so killing us will be easier?"

???1 "Who knows, some of the guard started talking about how monsters gave them 'Cell phones' to help with defences."

???2 "I don't know, man. Sounds like they are winning our trust, and making us dependent on their gizmos. For all we know, they could be using the things to collect our strategies."

A third man appears. "Did either of you see the display near the town hall? The thing that skeleton did?"

???2 "Yea, I did, that was freaky. If it can do stuff like that... who knows what else the monsters can do. Didn't humans have magic at one point?"

???3 "Yea, but after the barrier went up we lost it."

???2 "Figures... I was going to suggest trying to find a way to get magic back for humans, you know even the playing field, but if it vanished with monsters... it should stay that way."

???1 "We should leave, the guard is going to get suspicious; we don't know who we can trust... remember, we need a horse so we can warn the Sanctum and tell them the truth."

With those words, the group scatters and goes about their day; pretending like nothing happened.

 

The rest of the week goes by slowly. The monsters help build a second defensive wall, hoping it re-routes the Wälder beasts. Alphys manages to find a way to Camouflage the village as well, making it harder to spot from the defensive wall. If all goes well, the creatures will avoid the town... With Vulkin's help they were able to melt metals faster for construction, even employ something called "welding." The Dog Clan began assisting in patrols, using their more precise senses to detect intruders. Mettaton opted to stay underground to keep monsters entertained, but sent some mini-metta bots up to help. Napstablook did come to the surface, he is staying in the mansion upon Marceline's request; he helps make sure everything is put together properly.

Frisk's Cell reads: 10:00 P.M. March 31th, 2045 | No messages

They are having trouble sleeping... but they are not the only ones awake.

In the dark of night, four men stealthily approach a large section of the newly erected defence wall. In hushed voices they speak.

???1 "I don't know what the monsters are playing at, why would they build a defence wall if they can just escape to their cave?"

???2 "I have a feeling that they may be trying to get us to let our guard down, make us trust them. Then, when we least expect it, they leave for their cave; letting those other monsters, that sprout the damned golden flowers, do all the dirty work."

???1 "But the wall is sturdy... I was part of a group that helped test it. I am not so sure any more that they are trying to hurt us..."

???3 "Tch, I'm not going to wait around to find out. I say we find a way to sabotage it, prove what their real goals are."

???2 "What do you suggest? How are we going to sabotage it?"

???4 "Simple, we take some of the nails and bolts out; make it so it can't stand on its own... Then, we find a way to knock that thing in the center of the village down. It seems important to them."

???2 "I'm not sure about the last part, they assigned someone to watch it in case anyone got bad ideas; apparently a lot of people are voicing opinions about it. But... It's taking up space that the kids used to have, so maybe there will be an opportunity."

???1 "You guys do whatever, I... I need to think about it."

???2 "If you rat us out, I will blame this all on you. You know I can."

???1 "I- I wont... I just... I need to think."

As the first mystery man departed, the other three moved further down the wall to avoid the guard patrol.

???3 "I just had an idea, what if we use breaking the wall as a distraction to get to the stables? Then one of us could take a horse and ride to the Sanctum?"

???2 "That might just work, but we will need to make it significant enough to draw the attention of all the guards... If we can't break the wall by hand, I might be able to get a hold of the last bit of explosives the guard has."

???4 "Dangerous, but I think it would work. Do either of you know how to ride a horse?"

???2 "You know me, of course I can ride a horse."

The group of ne'er-do-wells begin looking for the best spot to start their sabotage, but find that there are no nails or bolts holding anything together; it's "welded." So the group resorts to plan b... Mystery man two... "requisitions" some explosive material without anyone anyone catching on, and then places it near the wall. For a moment Mystery man two hesitates, but he remembers that the Wälder beasts are stronger than humans; If this explosive stuff can damage the wall, then so could they. So he lights the fuse and runs before it detonates. It explodes far more powerfully than expected. He had only seen small demonstrations of the material, so he wasn't overly familiar... No way the creatures are that strong, but at least the point is made; and that is definitely a distraction. One of the men is knocked unconscious because they are too close as explosion goes off and breaches the wall. The rest of the mystery men run away from the area, as fast as possible, to the stables. Everyone in the village wakes up from the explosion, and many cautiously step out to see what is going on.

At the stables, a cloaked man stole supplies and a horse while another opens the way; allowing the first to ride off into the night. The other horses were injured to prevent anyone from catching the man riding off. With the deed done, the man runs to the commotion, and blends in with the worried crowd.

Frisk leaves the manor and uses their SAVE star.

* FILE SAVED.
* FRISK FEELS REJUVENATED.

 

Frisk starts walking in the direction they heard the explosion. On their way, someone they think they recognize rides off on a horse; they are probably going to request emergency aid. When Frisk gets to the scene, it is chaotic. People are panicking, and the wall has a gaping hole in it. Some start to cry out, blaming monsters, and others join in... The people who attacked Asriel while he was carrying Chara's body are very vocal. Distrust in monsters grows. Bernard catches sight of Frisk, and sends them back home with a stern expression.

When Frisk lays their head down, sleep does not come peacefully... The night is calm, and the bugs are quiet (thanks, explosion), but something is nagging at them from the back of their mind...

Eventually, though, reality blurs as Frisk drifts off into sleep.

"A...r...Y...n't...for...ou...getting....... someone?"

 

Frisk wakes up late, It's Saturday. They don't quite remember their dreams from last night. They check their phone.

Frisk's Cell reads: 9:00 A.M. April 1st, 2045 | 1 message

From: SirGrandpa >
If I catch you sneaking around outside late
at night again, you will wish your parents
only grounded you! Especially when there
is danger! Do you understand little missy!?

< To: SirGrandpa
Yes sir...

From: SirGrandpa >
Good. I won't tell your parents, but your
"Anime-Warrior-Princess" training will
be "delayed" until I decide you have
learned your lesson.

< To: SirGrandpa
But... All I did was go n look!

From: SirGrandpa >
No buts, just looking could have put you
in a lot of danger.

< To: SirGrandpa
Wat happned? I saw... sum1 riding
a horse last nite, did u send 4 help?

From: SirGrandpa >
No, I didn't. Did you get a look at their
face?

< To: SirGrandpa
Noe, they wer too fast. I am sure
u will find out who it was tho.
This is a smal village.

Other than the upsetting conversation with Bernard, the weekend goes on rather boringly. Frisk, no longer being grounded, helps around the village. It turns out that some people just mishandled the last of the explosives, why they had it is unknown... Frisk feels like Bernard isn't telling the whole story, but can't get him to speak. The monsters, despite the voices opposing them, fix the wall and begin work on a better irrigation system.

 

After their Monday lessons, Frisk checks their phone to see if they got any messages.

Frisk's Cell reads: 1:00 P.M. April 3rd, 2045 | No messages

Frisk decides to visit Alphys in the Manor's lab.

"Hey Alphys, whatcha workin' on?"

"OH!! F-frisk, you startled me... I- uhh... I'm working on ... s-something."

"Sounds pretty important, what does it do?"

"W-well! I am hoping that we can use the dimensional box technology t-to transfer energy... If we c-can do that, the village would have access to more power."

Interested Frisk replies. "Oh, that sounds really handy!" Frisk waits patiently, staring.

"D-do... you want to help?"

With a hint of excited helpfulness Frisk says "Sure!"

"Okay, I... Let me think... We n-need a source of contained magic to kickstart the dimensional link, c-could you see if there are any glass tubes or containers? Preferably not cracked."

"Ok."

Frisk leaves. As they search the house, they remember about the Dreams they have in their nightstand. 'Maybe those would help?' Frisk goes and grabs a few of them then returns to the lab.

Pocket: Dream x3

Frisk shows one of the Dreams to Alphys and asks, "Do you think this would work?"

Alphys takes it and examines it. "Where... did you get this? It... it looks like a... I don't know exactly... b-but it's... beautiful."

"Oh... I uh... made them. They're called "Last Dreams" or "Dreams" for short."

Flabbergasted, Alphys asks "wait wait wait!... Y-you MADE these?! How? I thought humans lost access to m-magic!?"

Frisk, nonchalant, Shrugs. "I was really determined when... things happened before the barrier was broken."

Alphys ponders this for a moment... then moves on. "Frisk, from what I can tell, this little ball holds enough magic and determination to... to cheat death... it's overkill... no pun intended... Are you s-sure you want to give this to me?"

Frisk Nods.

"You are a really... mysterious little child, you know that?"

Frisk nods.

Alphys sighs and turns back to her experiment. "Perhaps you s-should get someone to t-teach you how to use magic."

Holding back a laugh, Frisk asks "Sans?" in a comical manner.

Alphys turns around too quickly in panic, causing her to lose balance, and almost loses hold of the Dream. "OHGODNOTSANS!!!!"

She catches herself before falling and straightens out, while catching her breath. She continues "I w-was thinking someone l-like me, or Undyne, o-or Papyrus! Y-yea Papyrus is p-pretty good with magic and he is super c-careful! Sans... uh... heh... Y-you d-don't want to train with Sans..."

A little worried about her response, Frisk asks "What about Toriel?"

"OH!! YEA ACTUALLY!! Uh.... heh... Actually, Toriel would probably... wait... how does human magic work anyway?..."

Frisk shrugs.

"W-well... I guess there is only one way t-to find out..."

Frisk nods. They are curious about why Alphys had such a reaction to the thought of Sans teaching magic... maybe puns? Yea, would probably be pretty punishing lessons.

"H-hey... Frisk... It would probably be best if you didn't tell anyone outside of the manor, we d-don't know how they will react..."

Frisk nods, and leaves.

Frisk holds in a giggle as they think about learning all the pun magic from Sans... Mission accepted, "Learn magic from Sans." First, though, they will ask Toriel about learning magic; they can learn from Sans in secret. Frisk runs off and finds Toriel, who is pleasantly surprised to see Frisk.

Excitedly, Frisk says "Hey hey hey, Tori!"

"Yes, Frisk?"

Now a bit hesitant, Frisk continues. "Can you... teach me how to use magic?"

Surprised, Toriel asks "I am not sure anything would come about it, are you sure?"

Frisk nods.

"I... suppose I could teach you the basics of magic, and magic theory... If you really want to learn, what sort of teacher would I be to turn you down? We can start magic lessons tomorrow, if your parents say it is ok."

Frisk squeals in delight. "Thank you Toriel!" Then runs out of the room... before running back in.

"Oh, I almost forgot, Alphys is worried that people might not like me being able to use magic; so maybe we should have the lessons in private?"

Toriel thinks for a moment. "Hmm. I understand her concern, but I do not think it would be a problem; we can hold them in private if you wish, but I insist that your parents know."

Frisk nods.

"Alright, I look forward to their answer."

Frisk runs off again, a smile almost visible on their face. Frisk goes to their mom first, dad may look like he is in charge but it is really mom.

Frisk speaks with a hint of anxiousness, and hopefulness.

Hey, mom?"

"Yes my angel?"

"Can I start taking magic lessons with Toriel?"

"You want to learn about magic?"

Frisk nods.

"Well, I am very happy to hear that. Would you mind if I joined?"

Frisk shakes their head excitedly.

"Wonderful, then we can work together and learn magic. I will even bring the books I have on magic."

Frisk raises an eyebrow. "I didn't know you had magic books."

"I do, and that is because I kept them safe."

"Oh, Toriel wants you to know your answer; probably in person."

"Alright sweetheart, let me finish this chapter and I will go let her know."

Frisk runs off to hang out with Papyrus. The rest of the day goes smoothly. At dinner time, the group is mostly quiet. Another spot is prepared for Napstablook, it doesn't look like there is anything there; but they are chewing contently. Napstablook showed Toriel how to make ghost food. Frisk decides that everyone in the mansion should know about their super secret lessons, so no one accidentally tells anyone else.

Frisk gets everyone's attention and says "I have something to say." Their face was subtly happy.

Frisk, sure that everyone is listening, continues. "I can use magic! So far I was only able to make some things called 'Last Dr-'"

Unbeknownst to everyone but Sans, the world around the group of humans and monsters begins to stand still. Sans is focused.

Frisk continues, "-eams, but I am sure that with practice I could do more."

Sans replies. "heh, well kiddo, i bet you could get into all sorts of treble with magic."

Papyrus reacts "SANS, CAN YOU NOT!?"

Sans chuckles, the danger seems to have passed. The world returns to its usual self.

Frisk nods "yea, I could. I am worried about how other humans will react. Lots of them think magic comes from monsters... and after the whole... explosion thing... not everyone likes monsters."

Papyrus declares "WORRY NOT YOUNG FRISK, I, THE GREAT PAPYRUS, WILL PROTECT YOU!!! YOU NEED NOT FEAR THOSE NEFARIOUS NE'ER-DO-WELLS!! NYEH HEH HEH!"

Undyne joins with a wide grin. "YEAH!!! Don't you worry punk! We've got your back!!"

Frisk smiles subtly, and adds "even so. I am going to be learning magic from Toriel, but Alphys and I think it would be best if no one else but us knew."

To which Toriel comments "actually, in regards to your lessons Frisk, I think it would be good if everyone here helped teach you magic; within the bounds of my carefully prepared lessons, that is."

Alphys eyes Sans cautiously, his standard grin doesn't change. "I-I'm not sure that is a g-good idea Toriel... If we all try to teach Frisk, we c-could confuse them."

Napstablook starts to comment, but then decides against it.

Toriel looks to Napstablook and tells them "Yes, your help would be appreciated too Napstablook."

Returning to Alphys, Toriel says "I am aware of that, which is why I have been making very careful plans. All of you have one or more aspect you can use very well. We don't know what Aspects Frisk can use, so we will need all of you to help. If that is ok?"

Undyne and Papyrus shout "YEAH!!!", Alphys gives a nervous smile and a thumbs up, Sans gives a shrug, Asgore nods, Napstablook is reluctant, but also nods, and Marceline smiles.

The group continues to eat their dinner, but after a few moments Frisk asks Sans, with a subtly serious face, "can we talk for a moment?"

Sans winks, "sure."

The world stands still, Sans and Frisk are the only ones not affected.

"you have a pretty serious face there, what's up?"

"I noticed when you stopped everything, like you did in Grillbys. Why?"

"last dreams are really powerful, kiddo. some people would... kill for one, as ironic as that is, since they prevent death."

feeling more cautious, Frisk continues. "Oh... Wait... how do you know that?"

Sans only winks in reply.

"Well... I do have something else I want to ask." Frisk puts on an almost noticeable mischievous grin. Sans' grin widens in response.

"ask away, we have all the thyme in the world."

Frisk eagerly asks, "would you teach me some of your awesome magic? You know, in addition to Toriel's lessons?"

Sans' grin fades slightly, he shrugs and says "i dunno kiddo, that sounds like a skele-ton of work."

"Pleeeeeeease? I need to know the secrets behind your punderful magic!"

Sans chuckles "well... if you insist... but don't say i didn't warn you."

Frisk replies happily "Thanks Sans!"

"no problem kiddo and, don't worry, we will keep it a surprise."

With Sans' final statement, the world returns to normal. No one the wiser... except Alphys. She doesn't know what, but she cam tell that Sans and Frisk are up to something... maybe they were just talking about pranks... yea... just... pranks.

The group of humans and monsters finish their meals, clean up, and head to bed.

 

The night is calm, the bugs are back, and the stars are shining brilliantly... Frisk drifts off to sleep, happy that their friends are all happy and safe. Happy to have something that connects them all together.

*Knowing that someday they can call themselves a 'magical-anime-warrior-princess' fills Frisk with... DETERMINATION.

Chapter Text

* ONCE AGAIN, IN THE ALL TOO FAMILIAR VOID, FRISK DRIFTS.
* ECHOES OF SOMEONE LONG FORGOTTEN SHIFT AROUND, NAGGING AT FRISK'S PERIPHERAL VISION; THEY ARE NEVER TRULY SEEN.
* THEY SPEAK QUIETLY, THEIR VOICE ECHOING JUST AS THEIR FORM IS, BUT SLOWLY THE ECHOES BEGIN TO FORM COHESIVE WORDS.
* SOON THEY CAN BE HEARD CLEARLY.

'FRISK... Li...T...ste...o...n...Me! ' Every emotion is present in the unknown speaker's echoing voice.

Frisk speaks in a scared tone.

"Who... who is there?"

'My...Na...I...me...s...Chara'

"...Chara...? Aren't you... Dead?"

'Your... Deter...mi...na...tion.....Brou...Me...ght... Back...'

Hesitantly, Frisk replies "my... Determination?"

'...Yes...'

Feeling somewhat relieved, but still on edge, Frisk continues. "...What do you want?"

'Save... Him...'

"Who?..."

The anger in Chara's voice is more clear as they speak. 'YOU KNOW... WHO I'M... TALKING... ABOUT!'

Frisk replies, scared and worried. "I... I'm not sure."

'SAVE HIM!!... SAVE ASRIEL!!!'

Thinking back on their last encounter with Asriel, Frisk replies dejectedly. "I... I can't..."

'THAT IS BULL CRAP... AND YOU KNOW IT! ...AFTER EVERYTHING YOU HAVE BEEN THROUGH, ...EVERYTHING YOU HAVE DONE!'

Now more annoyed than scared, Frisk patiently asks "...Can you please stop yelling?"

The sound of anger fades as Chara continues to speak. 'Fine... But you have to promise to try to save him; don't just forget about him... like you have been.'

Downcast, frisk replies. "I don't even know where I would begin, how do I save him?"

'...We'll figure it out together.'

"What do you mean 'together?' Are you... possessing me?"

'Ever since you fell I have been with you... I'm not possessing you, I'm just... here.'

Frisk asks, with a curious voice "Why didn't you say anything sooner?"

'I've been trying to... but it's kinda hard to talk without a body.'

"Right... So, you're the culprit behind all the creepy whispering at night?"

'...I sure hope I was... Stupid questions aside, do you promise?'

Somewhat annoyed, Frisk replies "your sarcasm isn't helping... But yes... I promise... how are we going to save him?"

'I... don't know but, like I said, we'll figure it out... I know it's kind of early, and I just yelled at you... but I have a favour to ask.'

"Ok?"

'Can you take me... I mean... could you go visit him? I would really like to see him.'

Hesitantly Frisk answers. "I... I suppose I could... That is, if he's willing to show himself."

'Thanks... The door is here, time to wake up...'

Frisk asks curiously "Before I go... If you've been with me the whole time, what changed? Why not talk to me in the Underground?"

'...It wasn't until after watching everything you did in the Underground that I realized how wrong I was...'
'Now I'm being given another chance... So I have to try to save him, and give him another chance too.'
'At first I thought you were going to try to save him, but I noticed that... you were trying to forget instead.'

"Hmm... Then maybe it was a good thing I tried to forget, because otherwise you probably would've just been in my head; all alone..."

Chara does not respond.

"Well, I suppose I should wake up now..."

* FRISK APPROACHES THE DOOR AND LOOKS AT THEIR FRIENDS AND FAMILY.
* THEY LOOK AS HAPPY AS EVER.
* LIGHT GRADUALLY FILLS FRISK'S MIND AS THEY WALK THROUGH THE DOOR, AND THEY RETURN TO REALITY.

 

Frisk wakes slowly, trying to decide if what happened really happened... Thinking back on it makes Frisk think it couldn't just be a dream.

Frisk takes another moment to think before starting their normal routine. 'I wonder if we can communicate outside of dreams too...'

They don't think for too long since they may not like the answer, that encounter was... unpleasant. Frisk changes and then heads off to complete their normal routine, this time though there are no trap shenanigans from last night; somewhat disappointing, really. Breakfast goes smoothly, and afterwards Frisk decides to give Bernard a visit; getting their mother's approval beforehand, of course. Before they leave, Frisk checks their pockets.

Pockets: Dream x2

' Looks the same as when I last checked.'

Frisk heads out and tries to find Bernard, first looking at his usual spot near the water tower, then looking in the center of town... but he isn't in either of those places. Frisk decides to ask one of the guards.

"Excuse me, mister guard, do you know where Bernard is?"

The guard looks down at Frisk, raises their armour's visor and replies in a contemplative voice. "I suppose the armour does hide my feminine features... As for Bernard, he is checking up on the scouting parties; wont be back for a day or two."

Disappointed, Frisk replies. "Oh... Well... That's OK. See ya later Deborah."

The well armoured guard replies "See ya Frisky," then shuts the visor on her helm.

Frisk walks off, picks up a stick along the way, and swings it around like a sword while making their way back to the manor. Frisk realizes that they didn't check their phone when they woke up.

Frisk's Cell reads: 9:38 A.M. April 4th, 2045 | 2 Messages

Frisk decides to wait until they are back at their house to check their messages.

From: SirGrandpa >
Frisk, I am going to check on the Scouts.
Need to see how long till the things
are close to the village.

Frisk regrets not having checked their phone when they woke up, but it is OK.

From: funnybones >
hey kiddo, don't forget that your magic
lessons start today. i have the perfect
place to start teaching you all my
'tricks.'

That last one is from a few minutes ago; good thing Frisk is going back home, they almost forgot! Now with more energy in each step, Frisk walks a little faster to their scary spooky manor. They take a moment to SAVE.

* FILE SAVED
* FRISK FEELS REJUVENATED.

 

As they go inside, their mind is full of all sorts of possible things they could learn... like making stuff disappear, but for real! Frisk is excited. They head to the library, where Toriel usually stays when she is not in the Study. The library is fairly large, it takes up two stories and looks like it could fit a bus in it snugly. The books along the walls are mostly intact, but many of them are falling apart or otherwise damaged. There are a few chairs in key locations, like one in the middle and at the two far ends. In the center of the room there is a grandfather clock, and a small table. The rug is a dingy off-white colour, but the walls are the same as the rest of the house.

Frisk eagerly asks "Toriel! Can we start magic lessons now?"

Holding back a giggle seeing Frisk's eagerness to learn, Toriel replies. "Of course Frisk, let me get your mother."

"Oh, and the books she has, right?"

With a slight sigh, Toriel responds "unfortunately those books are not what we need, they are books written by cultists who tried to use 'dark magic;' but there is no such thing. Even if there were, there is no way I would teach it to you."

Not particularly disappointed, Frisk replies. "Oh, okay."

Toriel leaves, and after a few moments she returns with Marceline in tow.

"Alright, Frisk, Marceline, today we are going to learn how to feel and connect with the magic within ourselves; no bullets or 'spells' yet."

Frisk replies, slightly disappointed "Aww... Okay..."

"Now, first we must meditate to clear our minds and our emotions. We will do this for about half an hour, longer if needed. Then we can begin learning how to manifest a bullet... Unfortunately I am only versed in Monster magic, but I know humans can make bullets too."

Intrigued, Marceline replies "I didn't know that monster and human magic was different."

"Human magic has less... how to put it... it has less of a strict form; so where one human would make fire one way, another human would make fire in another way; but for monsters, we all make fire the same way. There is also the matter of incantations, spells, and other things... I think my best example would be the human that summoned a bear to protect their shop. Monsters cannot do that, not easily at least and not without great risk to the monster. It would take a group of monsters to summon a bear."

"I see, but humans can also use monster magic?"

"Yes! Actually, monster magic is just magic, but with different standards and methods than human magic. Monsters cannot practice human magic, however, because human magic requires more... power, I think. At least, it requires a different kind of power, which we do not have."

"Ahh, well hopefully the Sanctum has books on magic that can help clear the mystery. Lets continue with your lesson."

The group sits down in a circle as Toriel instructs them to cross their legs and rest their arms, after which they begin to meditate. Frisk is a little restless, but eventually gets the hang of it. Half an hour is spent trying to help Frisk settle down, so they all sit there for about an hour and a half.

Toriel begins to speak again; in a calm and even tone. "With our clear minds, we can now begin to exercise connecting with our body's natural magic. First, we will attempt to manifest simple light from our palms. Take your arms and hold them out, palms up."

Toriel waits for a moment for her instructions to be completed before continuing.

"Now, envision energy coursing through your body, or from your SOUL, and guide it to your palms leading it out and letting it flow. Do not worry if nothing happens right away, it takes practice."

Frisk and Marceline do as instructed... but nothing happens; Toriel's hands, however, are little light shows of orange, green, and cyan sparkling in a pure white light. For Frisk there is some tingling, but nothing else. Toriel continues to speak.

"It is perfectly normal for nothing to happen at first, just remember to remain calm and keep a clear mind. Magic relies on Intent and Will. Without clear guidance it cannot take form."

The two try again, but there is still nothing to show for their efforts after several minutes...

Toriel speaks again. "Do not worry, this is perfectly normal. Now, I did not truly expect either of you to be able to manifest magic any time soon, especially since magic was drained from the world; It may just not be time yet."

Only slightly upset, Frisk rests their hands on their knees. Marceline continues to envision the energy flowing through her body, she can feel it; but for some reason, the faint whisper of energy doesn't want to listen to her.

The trio stay in the library practising, trying to manifest magic to no avail, until lunch time comes around. After lunch, Frisk starts on their usual work of math, reading, and science. Not long after Frisk finishes with schoolwork, they catch a glimpse of Sans waving them over.

"hey kiddo, you look pretty disappointed, i take it your lessons were dish-appointing?"

Frisk only slightly huffs in an amused manner, before replying "yea, I guess you could say they were really bore-ing."

"don't worry kid, i'm shore you'll get it.. maybe not here, but somewhere."

A little confused, Frisk asks "what do you mean?"

"simple, there isn't enough magic here. c'mon, i know a spot we can go to practice."

Frisk follows Sans outside the house and around the back. Before Frisk realizes it, the world goes dark for a moment and they are walking out from behind Sans' Snowdin home. It's colder than they remember... they shouldn't have worn a spring shirt today.

"we'll be practising in waterfall, but i need to get something from here first... ok?"

Shivering in their tee shirt from the sudden change in temperature, Frisk replies "O-ok-kay."

Sans and Frisk walk into the house, just as small and slightly messy as before. The sock with sticky notes around it is still next to the kitchen entrance, the pet rock is still on the table on the right side of the room (complete with sprinkles), the T.V. and couch are mostly dust free, and the quantum physics/joke book(s?) in the back left corner of the room is still there. Sans heads up to his room, Frisk can hear shuffling and drawers being opened and closed. Sans walks out.

"hey kiddo... you don't happen to have the key to the basement, do ya?"

Frisk thinks for a moment, then takes their phone out. 'Yep, there it is... how could you forget?' Frisk hands the key to Sans.

Sans tells Frisk "sit tight, i'll be right back" and then leaves. After a couple minutes, he returns with a book.

"this" Sans says as he holds up a book "is the best book you will ever get about monster magic right now. even though most of it is not useful to you, we will use it to practice today... lets go."

Frisk, curious, asks "where are we headed now, mister Legendary Fart Master?"

Sans chuckles "that is so juvenile... don't let anyone know my secret code word. kay?"

Frisk puts on a playful voice and says "Kay."

"great, with that settled... we're gonna head to waterfall, snowdin is probably too cold for you... and i'd rather not lose the stuff in this house."

"Makes sense." Frisk follows Sans out the door expecting to exit out to Snowdin, but they really shouldn't be surprised that they didn't. Sans took them to the room where the Legendary Artifact sat.

"alright bud, first things first, we gotta meditate. i know i know, you did that all earlier, but this is really important... if you dont keep a clear mind, you will have a bad time. got it?"

Frisk nods. Curious now what Sans is going to teach them.

"alright, sit here."

Sans points to a part of the floor and Frisk moves over to sit. As they do, a whoopee cushion goes off... Sans chuckles.

He looks to the side as he says "whoops, i must have dropped that while i was pointing at the ground. here, i'll take that." then takes the whoopee cushion.

"alright, now here is where the fun really begins. i've seen your soul, i know what you are capable of, and how you need to train. pretty lucky for you, huh?"

Frisk nods as Sans opens up the book to the first chapter.

"heh, well i'd like to go back to doing nothing so lets get started. first, meditate. i'll let you know when you are ready for the next step."

Frisk begins to meditate, and Sans watches to make sure they meditate properly; telling them how to sit and to keep their hands out with their palms facing each other. Once meditating properly, it takes a while, about an hour, before Sans says anything else.

"heh, your face looks pretty focused. maybe you should relax, instead of focusing so hard on not focusing. just pretend you're me."

Frisk realizes that thinking about not thinking is not helpful, and how much of a contradiction it is... They let their mind relax... and after about ten minutes... the whole world... slows down... very slightly.

Sans speaks softly, "you look pretty relaxed now. i knew it'd be easy for you. i bet you're actually pretty lazy, aren't you? anyhow... focus on your soul. don't imagine your soul, feel it. let your mind fill in the rest."

Frisk follows Sans' instructions, they focus. It's difficult to keep their mind clear, but after about half an hour they can feel their SOUL within them... their mind begins to show them something... it's so Red... so Pure... they can see energy flowing through them, going to and from their SOUL... it's so wonderful.

"that look on your face... i bet you can see your soul. red with energy flowing all around and whatnot. your soul was ready to start magic lessons yesterday, but i was too lazy to tell you."

Calmly and carefully, Frisk asks "whats next?"

"geez, you're a real slave driver kid... so much work... heh... next you need to feel that energy you see, focus, and feel how it feels when the energy moves. once you're familiar with how the energy feels as it moves around, mimic that feeling and try to direct it to your hands."

Frisk follows the directions and Sans occasionally tickles tickle Frisk's nose with a feather. Frisk eventually sneezes before catching on.

Frisk hold back laughing and says "Hey! I'm trying to focus!"

Sans chuckles "gotta be able to keep your focus in any situation, right?"

Frisk returns to focusing, Sans doesn't interfere this time. It takes about an hour, but they begin feeling the energy within them. Stirring, moving to and fro. Frisk beings to mimic these feelings and slowly guides the energy to their hands... After what feels like an eternity, but is really only four minutes, a brilliant red light begins to shine from their hands. Frisk opens their eyes as they notice the difference.

"This is sooo cool! If only mom and Toriel were here to see it..."

"don't worry kiddo, you can show 'em when you get back. you should've absorbed enough magic power from the area to fully recharge. humans are like magic batteries, but monsters are more like fountains. you have to recharge, but our magic makes us what we are."

Excited, Frisk asks "Oh ok! So... what next?"

"well, next you need to calm down or you could explode. literally. after that, let's try healing magic first. normally humans have to figure out what aspects they can use, but you have 'em all. aren't you lucky?"

Frisk nods energetically, the red light in their hands almost goes out in the process and so Frisk tries to calm down.

"alright, now i want you to turn off those stage lights on your hands and make a bullet instead. same as before, but this time i want you to feel the energy take the shape of something in front of you. as you do, remember what it feels like to be healed by magic and give that feeling to the energy."

After about fifteen minutes, Frisk is able to shape the energy pouring out of their hands. It takes the form of a Green band-aid, not surprising.

"interesting choice. let's see if it worked. dont freak out... but if i take any damage i'll die, so you have to be the one to take the hit. that ok?"

Frisk nods bravely. After which, Sans summons a single bone and sends it after Frisk. It only does one damage.

"alright, now, touch the band-aid shaped bullet."

Frisk does so, they feel better "It worked!" Frisk nearly shouts in excitement.

"heh, good job kiddo. alright. well, i think that is about it for today. lets head back. remember, these lessons are secret. if you tell anyone, i'll deny it. can't have you ruining my good name with rumours of actual work, even if i am just standing here doing nothing." Sans winks and puts the book away... somewhere.

Somewhat disappointed they wont learn more today, but still excited, Frisk nods and begins to follows Sans back to the Manor... but they remember the promise they made.

"Hey, Sans, there is actually somewhere I need to go in the ruins; someone I promised I would go visit... can we stop by there before we leave?

"sure, follow me."

They round the corner, in the opposite direction of the ruins, and end up outside of Home.

"Thanks Sans, I'll be right back. I... would like some privacy for the visit if that is OK."

Sans thinks he knows what Frisk means, Chara is buried here; so they must be going to pay respects... he isn't worried. "sure, bud, take all the time you need." Sans begins napping.

Frisk heads back through the now empty ruins, all the way to where they first fell... Approaching quietly, in case Flowey doesn't want to be seen, Frisk sneaks into the room. Sure enough, there among the golden flowers is one that is taller than the rest. It's petals are drooping. Frisk begins to speak, quietly.

"As-...Flowey?"

Somewhat surprised, Flowey looks up to see where the voice was coming from. He replies. "... Don't you have anything better to do? I told you to leave me here, idiot."

Frisk, somewhat worried, replies. "I.. I made a promise to someone, that I would visit you. I know you didn't want me to see you like... this... but that person really misses you."

"Well you can tell Papyrus the same thing, just forget about me."

Hesitantly, Frisk replies "It... wasn't Papyrus, and I don't know how to explain who spoke to me; or how..."

"You know, you are really irritating me right now. Why don't you just leave?"

"Why don't you come down to the village?"

Now visibly aggravated, Flowey states "You are even more of an idiot than I thought before! Why should I go down to the village? They are the ones that killed me in the first place!"

Frisk, now also riled up, retorts "my family is nice! I bet you would enjoy living in my house. Besides, other monsters are living in the village now too... and no one would recognize you anyway."

Flowey is silent for a few moments, thinking. He looks over to the bed of flowers, and his petals begin to droop...

In as even of a tone as he can muster, Flowey replies. "No thanks, I'm gonna stay here... Now stop being an idiot and leave already."

"...I'm going to come back and visit you again. And again, and again, and again, until you come to the village with me."

"Whatever..."

"See ya later, Flowey."

Flowey remains silent. Frisk leaves. Now back to where Sans is napping, they wake him up, leave the Underground, and go back to the manor.

 

Before they enter the manor, Sans says "hey, bud, don't forget to practise. it came pretty easily to you today, but that wont always be the case. i suggest you keep practising for the rest of the day; ok? just be careful, and don't try to make anything dangerous. stick with healing."

Frisk nods and begins to head off to the play room to practice... then turns around suddenly, causing themselves to trip on the edge of a rug. They almost forgot that they want to show Toriel and their mom. Frisk gets up and runs off to show them.

First, Frisk goes to the study to show their mom.

Barely able to contain their excitement Frisk holds out their hands, palms facing each other, and says "mom! Look look!"

With a hint of amusement, Marceline looks and asks "what am I looking at sweetheart?"

Having not thought about it before hand, Frisk was a little unprepared and slightly embarrassed. "Uh... give me a moment..."

Frisk clears their mind, then relaxes. About ten minutes later, Frisk repeats the steps Sans told them and starts to produce a single green band-aid... it takes about fifteen minutes in all. Frisk opens their eyes and produces an almost visible smile as the Band-aid bullet forms.

Marceline is surprised by the sight but filled with joy as she responds "how wonderful, my sweet little angel is a bone-fide witch! Have you shown Toriel yet?"

Frisk shakes their head and says "not yet, but I'm going to show her next!"

"I'm sure she will be just as proud as I am."

Frisk lets off another almost visible smile and runs off to find Toriel, nearly bumping into Papyrus on the way. The band-aid shaped bullet hits Papyrus and disappears.

"Oh, sorry for almost running into you Papyrus! I am on my way to show Toriel my magic!"

"NO NEED TO WORRY FRISK, I FEEL FINE! DID YOU SAY MAGIC? THAT IS WONDERFUL, MAYBE SOMEDAY YOU WILL BE AS GREAT AT MAGIC AS I AM!!"

Frisk replies "don't forget that it's a secret!" as they run off to tell Toriel.

Once at the library, Frisk approaches Toriel slowly. They see that she is napping and turns around to leave, but Toriel stops them.

Sleepily, she says "do not worry, Frisk. I was not asleep yet... Is there something you need?"

Frisk turns back around, and gives a nearly visible smile while saying "I figured it out!" Frisk repeats the steps once again, clearing their mind, then relaxing, then focusing on the magic within... This time it went by faster, slightly.

As Frisk holds the Green band-aid shaped bullet afloat in the air, Toriel moves her paw to her chest and smiles wide. "Oh my!! That is wonderful Frisk! You seem to be doing quite well so far, but we don't want to rush. Tomorrow you and your mother will need to keep practising, we will have another lesson next week; alright?"

Frisk, though a little disappointed, nods and allows the bullet to vanish. They understand that magic can be dangerous... Frisk remembers about the book Sans has and leaves the library to look for him, but they find him... no where. Frisk, however, is determined to find him. They search high and low, until they give up... which only takes a few minutes. There is only so much house that can be searched, even in a manor. As Frisk turns to go to the play room and practice magic, however, Sans rounds the corner Frisk just left.

With his usual grin, Sans asks "you looking for something, or someone?"

Happy to finally find him, Frisk replies "Yes, I was wondering if I could borrow that book on magic you have?"

Sans thinks about it for a moment "hmm... i dunno."

Frisk puts on a slightly noticeable cute face, because they don't have to try as hard for Sans to notice.

"aw c'mon kiddo, don't make that cute face at me... buddy... that... that isn't fair..... ah... alright, you win. but first, you have to answer something for me."

Frisk is happy, but cautious, and replies "sure, what 's your question?"

"what's brown with black roots?"

Frisk is confused, they turn their head to the side. "Huh? Brown with black roots...?"

"heh, yea. don't worry, i'm sure if you use your head you'll figure it out."

Frisk thinks for a few moments... then has an idea "is it a potato with root-rot?"

"nope"

"Hmm.... can... you give me a hint?"

"sure. the hint is, 'are you using your head?'"

slightly frustrated, Frisk replies "yea, of course I am!"

Sans chuckles. "well, if you can't answer that question... i could ask you another question."

Frisk is skeptical, the new question could be worse... They go for it anyway. "OK, what is your other question?"

"i noticed the roots of your hair are turning black, why is that?"

Frisk holds a hand to their face for a moment, frustrated with themselves... they have been overcomplicating his original question.

"you alright there?"

Frisk settles down and replies "yea, I just realized that I was putting too much effort into your question... A couple months ago, Bernard was scouting an old settlement for supplies and brought back a hair bleaching and dye kit; I wanted to see what I would look like with brown hair. It was a late birthday present. The last of it was used a few weeks before I fell into the underground, so now my hair is going back to black."

"huh, well i'm dyeing to see what your natural hair looks like."

Frisk gives a slightly amused huff and says "well, you have your answer. I think the rules of shenanigans command that you keep your end of the deal."

Sans replies as he pulls the book out, from... somewhere, and hands it to Frisk. "yea i think so too, here you go, i marked the only useful page for you. the rest is all monster specific."

Frisk takes the book carefully, replying "thank you Sans, I'll return it when I'm done!"

Sans waves dismissively, saying "don't worry about returning it, i don't need it anymore. give it to toriel, say you found it or something."

"Oh, ok... if you insist"

Sans heads off and disappears, and Frisk returns to the library with the book. Frisk shows the book to Toriel and they go over it together, mostly sticking to the part Sans marked. Toriel gives examples of using bullets in different ways, as best as she can. The two are so focused on the unexpected lesson that they forget to keep track of the time. Eventually, the Grand father clock chimes.

Toriel looks up at the grandfather clock and says "Oh my! It is almost time for dinner, I should go and get everything ready. Would you like to come help Frisk?"

Frisk thinks for a moment... "Hmm... Well, I would like to practice magic more... but I also want to help... I like helping... Ok, I will help!"

Toriel and Frisk leave the library and go to the kitchen. And on the way there, Frisk has an idea...

"Hey, Toriel?"

"Yes, Frisk?"

"Would you be willing to make cooking into another magic lesson? Like... how to cook with magic fire?"

Toriel thinks for a moment before responding. "Hm... Well I don't see the harm in it, but I don't know if you can use Fire magic... I was never very well versed in human magic, to be honest."

Excitedly, Frisk replies "Oh! Don't worry about that! I know I can use fire magic-... well, I feel like I can at least!"

Toriel replies with a soft giggle. "If you say so, but you are not allowed to try using fire magic yet. Do you understand?"

Frisk nods, saying "alright."

At the kitchen, Frisk waits around while Toriel checks the fridge and cupboards for ingredients.

"Frisk, what would you like to have for dinner?"

After taking a moment to think, Frisk replies "A variation of a Shepherd's Pie, easy to make with random ingredients; doesn't require meat."

"Hmm... That does sound like a good idea, given the... lack of ingredients."

Frisk reassures her "Don't worry Toriel, we have grains stored for the spring. Meat is mostly for the winter. Can't grow crops when everything is frozen, and it takes time for them to grow, so we save most of the grains over the winter for the next spring."

"Well, I am glad you are all well prepared. Let us begin, shall we?"

Toriel and Frisk begin mashing potatoes, cutting up various vegetables, and picking spices. As they do so, Toriel talks to Frisk about fire magic. Dinner is ready fairly fast. The most cooking that needed to be done was for the potatoes, and for a few fried vegetables, then putting everything in the oven to soften it up. Frisk calls every one for dinner, in the best Toriel voice they can muster. As every one arrives and eats for dinner, it is mostly quite. Frisk talks about how they figured out how to make healing bullets, Sans feigned knowledge of the fact and acted surprised, and the rest chatted about their day. Near the end of dinner, as is now customary for important talks, Alphys beings to speak.

"S-so I have been working on a... device... that will allow us to pull energy from the CORE and supply it to the village, and so far it seems like it works... but I need to go back to Hotland to c-connect it up so I can test it for real."

Toriel is the first to respond. "With the small amount of energy the village uses, is that really the best option? That seems like too much."

Alphys replies "a-actually! It would allow the Addams Family's generator to be a backup, and reduce the workload. Less people needing to get wood to burn for stoves and the generator, the better. It will also allow more houses to be set up with power... and enable better defences... and... security cameras to track the movements of those... creatures."

Asgore responds. "I think it is a wonderful idea, Alphys. With access to more power, we can improve their living conditions significantly."

"E-exactly! So... the real problem is... heh... I-I need someone to go with me."

Undyne doesn't hesitate. " Where ever you go Alphys, I'll go with you! You can count on me!"

Frisk raises their hand. "Oh oh! Can I go with too? I want to say hi to some of the monsters, and do ambassador stuff by seeing what they need in order to live on the surface."

Alphys looks at Toriel, who looks to Frisk's parents, who nod.

"Sweet!"

Sans pipes up "heh. kid, you have an unhealthy desire to work. You're gonna turn yourself into a skeleton if you keep working yourself to the bone."

Papyrus is visibly frustrated, but instead of retorting he says "I WILL ACCOMPANY YOU AS WELL ALPHYS!!"

Sans adds "i should go too, there is something i need to check on."

Everyone at the table, except Frisk's parents, stopped and looked at Sans, who merely shrugged and said "what? i need to see if i forgot to close my bedroom door."

After briefly looking at each other, they return to their meals. Sans winks at Frisk with a hint of mischief, stands up, and put his dishes in the kitchen before heading off; presumably to bed. No one else has anything to say, so they finish dinner and follow suit.  Frisk heads to Sans' room first, to see if he is really sleeping. He isn't.

Curious, Frisk asks "Hey Sans, what' up?"

Sans replies "i heard toriel isn't going to give you a lesson till next week, so my lesson will have to wait too. there is something i have to check out while at the underground though, i figured you might be interested in joining."

"Hmm... i don't know... maybe. I'll have to think about it."

Sans shrugs and says "alright, let me know before we head out."

"Ok, goodnight Sans"

"g'night kiddo."

With the exchange done, Frisk leaves and goes to their own bedroom. As Frisk lays their head down, the events of the day come flooding back... The night is calm, the bugs are still annoying, and the stars are shining bright... Frisk drifts off into peaceful slumber.

 

* Being one step closer to their dreams of being a "magical-anime-warrior-princess" fills Frisk with... DETERMINATION.

 

 

* A STRANGE SENSATION CAN BE FELT THROUGH THE VOID.
* FRISK CAN NO LONGER FEEL ONE OF THEIR SAVE STARS.

Chapter Text

As Sans wakes up to the new day, he takes a moment to appreciate it... Knowing that they are further than the research says they would be before everything ends, really puts him at ease... Until he starts thinking about the magic lesson with Frisk.

'something is wrong with their soul...'

'if the kid really was the anomaly, then i have to take care of them before we lose everything.'

With that sobering thought, Sans continues to get out of bed and get ready for the rest of the day. He takes his time, he isn't fond of working anymore.

Sans' Alarm clock reads: 10:15 A.M. April 5th, 2045

'the kid should be done with their schoolwork soon. i should go check on them.'

Sans heads out of the room, grabs a late breakfast, and stealthily looks for Frisk... he doesn't have to look for long. As Sans enters the playroom he sees Frisk sitting on the floor, their toys are all in a box on the left side of the room, and their schoolwork is piled up next to them; looks like it's all done. Frisk looks like they are trying to meditate... Sans decides against a practical joke. instead, he looks at their SOUL... and confirms his worries. He can't quite tell, but something looks... off about it. Like it's just barely too big. Sans decides to make his presence known.

"hey kiddo, did you decide?"

Frisk opens their eyes to look at Sans and replies, "yea, I'll go with you. Even if it turns out to be some prank, it could be fun."

Sans chuckles softly, "you've got me all figured out, don't ya?"

"Nope, but I think I'm getting there... Oh yea, by the way, Papyrus isn't going to the Underground; some of the monsters here need help. Some humans are throwing a fit. I think he can fix it, but if not I can help when we get back."

"sounds like a plan. papyrus is so cool, i bet he'll solve the problem."

Frisk puts on a slightly noticeable funny face while saying "yea, he's a real bone-ified hero in this case" and points at sans with comical finger-guns.

Sans grins a little wider. "well, we'd better get ready to go, i'd hate tibia late to the party."

"Alright, let me try something really fast first!"

Frisk returns to their meditation for a few moments, and after about a minute they are able to manifest a band-aid shaped bullet; much faster than yesterday.

Sans can see the problem more clearly when Frisk uses magic... he replies with his usual tone. "good job, kiddo."

Frisk manifests a second band-aid shortly after Sans comments.

"hey, you might want to slow down, don't wanna get bone tired before we leave."

"But I feel spine!"

"heh. if you say so. i'm gonna get everyone else. don't take too long, ok?"

"I'm done, so I'll just follow you."

The pair leave the playroom, Frisk decides to grab something for lunch -just in case- and the two group up with Alphys and Undyne. Papyrus follows them out, ready to cheer people up and be a good mascot for monsters. If he can show humans that monsters are nice and fun, then it will be easier for everyone to get along; anyone who is still on the edge... well, they get to have an eight year old explain decency and kindness to them.

On their way out of the mansion, Frisk checks on their SAVE star. 'Weird... maybe it was just a dream?'

 

Normally Sans avoids teleporting such a large group, it's very taxing on him and his magic, but if he's right... everything's at stake. He has to try to stop it all from being lost, especially since he's never been closer. As the group rounds a corner in the village, the world goes black; and in the blink of an eye, it returns. Everyone but Sans is taken by surprise. The only sign of who did it is the amount of sweat on Sans' face, and his less than energetic expression. Alphys pieces together what happened, but doesn't bring it up... Undyne, however...

"HOLY FU-!!" Undyne remembers that Frisk is there. "-DGE!! What just happened!? Did I, like, black out or something? I don't remember walking all the way here!" She is slightly embarrassed by the slip, but continues being confused.

After a few moments of walking, Alphys speaks up since Sans doesn't "w-well, I think we were t-teleported." After stating the obvious, she looks at Sans for a moment...

"SWEET! That means we can be done faster!!"

"Y-yea... but at what cost?"

"Man, way to make it sound eerie babe... I am sure everything will be fine!" Undyne grabs Alphys' hand and smiles, Alphys blushes before realizing that she isn't moving...

Sans remains silent as the two catch up. Frisk looks up at him curiously. He shrugs. By the time they reach the entrance to the Underground, the sweat on Sans' face is gone.

The group enters the underground in silence, and Frisk notices that their SAVE star outside the End of the Underground is missing...

They make a note of it, but keep going, thinking 'Huh... it wasn't just a dream... maybe these ones are going away because I don't need them here?'

On their way to the CORE, the group occasionally speaks with passing monsters. The group splits up as they approach their destination. Sans and Frisk take a different path into the CORE. Undyne looks back to make sure Sans isn't getting him and Frisk lost, but Alphys gets her attention; the two lovebirds keep going to the power distribution center.

As they make their way through the CORE, Frisk asks "Hey, Sans, is what you need to check on at the CORE?"

"kinda, the core is a lot bigger than it looks. but we are going to where i used to work, before we were trapped in the Underground."

Frisk, more curious now, asks "Oh, what are we going to do there?"

"there are some things i need to check on that i need your help with, since you already know my dirty secret."

A little confused, Frisk asks "your dirty secret?"

His grin widens a little "yea, that i put effort into things."

Underwhelming secret aside, Frisk is more than a tad excited to explore a new area; they reply. "Oh, OK. Well what are we waiting for? Let's go!"

Frisk expects Sans to use a shortcut to get to where they need to go, but he doesn't. They walk for quite a while around the CORE, eventually finding a... wall. Sans kicks the bottom of the wall. At first, it looks like his kick breaks the wall, but Frisk sees the top begin to drop as well. Sans moves out of the way as part of the wall rotates down to become a staircase. After it's fully rotated into place, it slides backwards and connects to the rest of the stairs behind it. Sans starts to walk up the stairwell, and waves for Frisk to follow. The passage is dark. Soon, Frisk and Sans are in a large chamber. Sans turns on the light and Frisk is able to see a room that is a little larger than Sans' bedroom. It's mostly white, but has a large circular metal pad in the center with a glowing cyan ring under it. There is a small computer screen right outside of the circle that is facing the door. Sans approaches it and begins to type in weird symbols.

"alright kiddo, this is a teleportation room. me and... the royal scientist made this place to try to get out of the barrier. we found out pretty quickly that we couldn't just teleport out..." Sans shrugs "we figured we couldn't, but we had to try."

"Wait, why do we need to be here? Can't you just... use a shortcut? Or do you want to see if it works?"

"i already know that it works, and i would use a shortcut to get where we are going if i could... but the place we are going is actually too far away for shortcuts. i would get bone tired just trying to make it part of the way there."

"Oh... well, let me know if you need any help!"

"will do kiddo."

Sans returns his attention to the console, typing away furiously. After about half an hour, Sans stops typing.

"alright, all set, just gotta run a test to make sure we don't die."

Sans looks in his pockets for something to use as a test subject... but found nothing. He remembers that he left the hand held core-sample drill at the manor.

"hey frisk, you have anything we can use for a test?"

Frisk thinks for a moment, then checks their pockets and Dimensional boxes:

Pockets: Dreamx2, Stick, Sandwich
Box A: BadMemory x8
Box B: SnowPiece, HushPupe, DogResidu x8

"I have some Dog Residue we can use, that stuff is self replicating..."

"sure, that'll work."

Frisk takes a piece of Dog Residue out of Box B and hands it to Sans, who puts it in the center of the pad. Sans returns to the console, presses a few buttons, and waits. After a moment, a loud humming can be heard, and shortly after a blinding flash emanates from the circle. The Dog Residue is gone, not a trace is left. Sans looks at the circle expectantly... After about five minutes the humming returns, and then another flash of light. The Dog Residue is back. Sans picks it up and hands it back to Frisk.

"great, looks like it works. Now we just need to make sure it is going where we need it to go... wanna volunteer? heh."

"Sure!... Wait, it won't be dangerous... right?"

Sans shrugs "you're right, i didn't see if it's going where we need it to... silly me. i'll test it."

More typing. More strange symbols. Some of them look like hands, weird. Sans finishes and heads to the center of the room and waits.

"if i'm not back in five minutes, well... i'll be boned. do me a favour and don't tell papyrus though, ok?"

Frisk nods, but is worried now.

The humming in the room is louder than before, and the flash of light seems brighter... Probably because he's larger than a pile of dog residue.

 

The wait is excruciating... Frisk checks their phone every few seconds, just in case. It feels like time is crawling... Five minutes on the dot, and Sans is back; he looks satisfied.

"we're good to go, just need to make sure we have a way back. there's no way to predict how long we'll be there, so i cant set it to teleport us on a timer."

Sans returns to the console and types some more symbols in. Frisk would ask what it says... but they have a feeling they wouldn't understand it. Sans notices their curiosity as he turns to look at them for calculations though, so he explains.

"they're are called 'wing-dings,' it's what the royal scientist used. i had to learn how to read it... pretty rough huh?"

"Yea... so this is all... like... science and magic and stuff?"

"yea, there's a lot of hidden tech and arcane patterns. automated magic at its finest right now. go ahead and stand in the center, i'll get it started."

"Neat..." Frisk is a little hesitant to stand in the center of the pad... but eventually does.

When Sans finishes typing, a metallic ostrich-egg-like thing is lowered down from the ceiling; it doesn't appear to be anything more than an egg shaped piece of metal. He takes it and moves into the center of the pad, where Frisk is anxiously waiting. After a few moments, the machinery begins to hum as it moves parts into the right places and charges, then Frisk starts to feel tingly. After a brilliant flash of light, Frisk opens their eyes and sees... nothing. Well... not entirely nothing. The egg thing Sans is holding is giving off a soft glow.

Sans looks around and comments. "oh, yea, you can't see the monster specific emergency lights... hold on. i'll be right back," then places the egg thing down and leaves into the perceived darkness.

After a few moments, dim lights turn on and Sans returns... They are in a room that looks similar to the one they just left, except newer. Which is strange, because it's covered in... dust?

"looks like we only have emergency power... that should be enough for what we need to do here, though."

The whole place is creepy already... Frisk is a little scared, but they try not to show it as they speak. "Where are we... Sans?"

"this is where me, the royal scientist, and papyrus came from. it's an old human lab from before the war, super secret. in fact, this is the original birthplace of skeleton monsters."

Sans begins walking to the door at the end of the room, leaving the egg thing behind, and looks back at Frisk. "everything ok?"

"Yea... I... just have a bad feeling about this."

In a reassuring voice, Sans says "don't worry kiddo, you'll be ok if you stick with me. we're the only ones here." ...Sans thinks to himself 'i hope...'

"Okay..."

Frisk follows Sans. They enter into a hallway. The walls appear to be sterile white, and the floors are checkered white/grey. Occasionally they pass scattered piles of dust... There are three doors on the right side of the hallway, each about nine feet apart, and two on the left with a turn where a third would be. Sans looks back to make sure Frisk is following him.

"not much further. sorry about the mess. i haven't been here in a while, so i forgot."

"It's OK."

They turn at the end of the hallway, and Sans covers Frisk's eyes before they can see the carnage... for all the things he remembers, he's forgetting a lot of important details. The hallway is littered with decaying bodies, there are gashes and burn marks in the walls and floors, and piles of dust are scattered through dried pools of some dark substance. Sans decides to go back around the corner with Frisk and have them wait.

"i have a mess to clean up, stay here ok?"

Frisk nods, but... Sans should know better than to think Frisk wont explore.

As soon as Sans turns the corner, Frisk goes to the closest door ...but it’s locked. They move down to the next one, on the left side of the hall; it's a broom closet. All the rest of the doors are also locked... So much for being able to explore this spooky place. The only door they couldn't check is the one at the end of the hall where the turn is. Frisk walks back where Sans left them ,and waits. After a few minutes, Sans returns and waves Frisk over.

"all clean, sorry about that kiddo. there was a pretty big fight here when the war started, i kinda forgot about it... you're going to have to wait for me to clean up before we turn corners though, alright?"

Frisk nods and says "okay."

They continue together back around the corner, and walk down the hallway. This one looks about the same, except there are only two doors, one on the left side of the hall and one on the right; the one on the left is closer to where they came from... but looks heavily damaged. Sans approaches the next corner, which is about the same distance away as the last turn but to the right instead of left, and looks around it. He sighs.

"there were a lot more people here than i remembered. stay here, i'll be back."

Frisk nodded, but, being the mischievous explorer they are, they went to the closest door a few moments after Sans left. The door on the right side of the hall is currently closer, so Frisk heads there. It's labelled "R&D 1," and is not locked. Frisk enters. It's about the size of two Grillby's side by side, and is full of lab tables, chalkboards, and... bodies. It's too dark to see any details, but Frisk quickly regrets going in there. The whole room smells terrible, and looks like it was caught on fire; not very many things survived. As Frisk turns to leave, however, they catch a glimpse of a metal clipboard that seems to be mostly untouched by the carnage... mostly

Embedded across the top of the metal clipboard is a thin device, it's displaying the following information:

Research completed and compiled in Time Line: (pi^4)c Parent Timestamp: Dec, 12, 1678. 5:56 P.M. Time Line: (pi)c
Current Relative Time: <<ITCs ARE NOT RESPONDING>> Current Absolute Time: <<ITCs ARE NOT RESPONDING>>
Research performed by: (Head) Dr.WDGaster (pi^6)c2, RSanchez (pi)c-137, DHolmes c-3^pi
Document compiled by: CSGaster (pi^6)c2

Some of the documents on this clipboard seem to be somewhat legible.

Frisk doesn't understand what it says... but it looks like it's talking about human magic. Frisk decides to take the clipboard, it might come in handy. Frisk leaves the room, hoping they don't have nightmares tonight, and closes the door. Just in time too, because Sans rounds the corner as they let go of the handle.

With a hint of nervousness, Sans cautions "hey, you don't want to go in there... that's where i... uh... put the mess. c'mon, we are almost to that thing i need to check on."

Frisk nods, doing their best to keep their fear off their face... Sans sees it, of course.

Apologetically, Sans responds. "i guess it was pretty silly of me to think you would just stand there, huh? well, next time i'll warn ya ok?"

Frisk nods.

"actually... the next hallway is pretty short and leads up to a fork, we are going to go right, but i am going to go ahead and uh... clean up. i'll mark the doors that you probably shouldn't enter."

Frisk goes with Sans down the hallway, and sure enough it was only about half the size of the previous hallways and led to a fork. There is only one door in the short hallway, but it looks like there desks and other heavy things are blocking it from inside. As they approach the end of the hallway. Sans goes ahead and marks the first door to the right with bones, in preparation. A sign on the wall says that bathrooms are to the left... Frisk realizes that they actually do need to use the restroom, and informs Sans. He goes ahead down the left hallway to make sure the way is clear, and comes back with a thumbs up after a minute.

As he goes down the right hallway, into what looks like might be a cafeteria, Sans says "keep out of trouble kiddo, don't touch stuff that looks dangerous."

Frisk nods.. but realizes that Sans can't see them, so they reply "okay, I'll be careful."

Frisk looks down the left hallway and only sees one door on the right side, there is also another turn to the left. Frisk goes to investigate, it isn't marked but it ends up being a disappointment; just a room full of bunk beds and small dressers. Going left at the end of the hallway, however, proves useful. There are bathrooms on the left side of the hallway, right after the turn. Frisk enters the appropriate room, and does their business... but there isn't any running water; Frisk will have to wash their hands later. Instead of going back to the three way intersection, Frisk decides to continue exploring. There is only one other non bathroom door. It’s marked "Development Pod Room #100."

Frisk thinks to themselves. 'Seems pretty... ominous. What are they developing, and why do they need a pod for it?...'

After a moment of hesitation, Frisk opens the door. The room is filled with a green glow from eight long rows of tubes. There looks to be about 10 or so per row, each with about five feet of space between them. Most of them are heavily smashed. There are piles of dust and more splotches of that dark dried stuff all over the ground below each of the tubes… And what looks like… hollow skin? It’s almost like they were growing full human shaped skins, without the bones. There is only one tube thing that isn't broken... Inside, a relatively small, surprisingly solid looking, human male is floating in a blueish-green liquid; he's wearing a strange jumpsuit connected to tubes and wires. Their eyes are closed. The panel at the base of it is in those weird symbols, but above the panel there is a metal label. It reads: "CU-270/Slim: Male (Pri/Sec/Ter: R/R/R)"

As Frisk looks at him they begin to wonder 'Is he... asleep?' but, shortly after their thought completes, Frisk is startled by Sans placing a hand on their shoulder.

In a low tone, Sans says "don't worry about it, frisk. i should have checked this room, i'm sorry."

After a few moments, Frisk turns around to face Sans. "What... what were you working on here?"

"c'mon, i cleared the way to the room we need... i'll explain later, kay?"

Not entirely convinced, but not wanting to stay, Frisk follows Sans and says "... Kay."

 

* EYELIDS OPEN TO REVEAL PIN PRICKS OF LIGHT SUSPENDED IN A DARKNESS AS DEEP AS THE VOID.
* A HAND IS GENTLY PLACED ON THE GLASS INSIDE OF THE CONTAINMENT TUBE. CRACKS SLOWLY BEGIN TO APPEAR ON THE GLASS.

 

They go back to the three way intersection and continue heading straight, eventually entering the cafeteria. It's pretty large... about the size of three Grillby's. The cafeteria tables are all flipped over, trays are scattered, and there is a ton of that dark stuff speckled everywhere... not to mention all the burn marks and gashes. Frisk is beginning to connect the dots with what it all is... they are very unsettled. At the far end there are two large metal doors, they look locked shut. On the left of the room, near the middle, there is another door; it's propped open. Sans and Frisk go to the door on the left.

As they approach, Frisk cautiously asks "Sans... why do we need to be here? What's so important?"

"kiddo, you know how in the underground you revealed your special powers? got my secret codeword?"

"Yea?"

"well, before the royal scientist disappeared we were tracking something... our reports showed a massive anomaly in the timespace continuum. timelines jumping left and right, starting and stopping... until suddenly, everything ends. when the barrier broke, i thought that we were home free. our reports rarely went outside the barrier, and we did more than that. we passed the point where everything usually ends. so, i'm hopeful that it will stay that way. but... there's something i have to check to make sure it stays that way."

Frisk is worried now, "Is it... me?"

"no, not you. well, kinda. that's why i need to check and see for myself... when you were doing your thing during our lesson, i noticed something. it was... terrifying, if i'm going to be honest."

"What did you see?"

Sans doesn't answer, instead, he continues through the door "c'mon, let’s go into my old office, i forgot the term we used but there should be something in here that has it."

Frisk nods and they follow, though a bit hesitant. The hallway is short, there are two doors on the right and one at the end. The furthest door on the right is blocked with bones.

The office is fairly large. On the right, immediately noticeable, is an elaborate chemistry set, at the far end are some machines that Frisk doesn't recognize, a huge bookcase with metal clipboards in it to the left, and a desk to the left of the bookcase near the door. Sans goes over to the bookcase and looks at the clipboards for a while, before taking one and handing it to Frisk.

"here, this one is on human souls. it's marked as the most correct, but not completely correct... it should have the info we need in it."

Frisk takes the clipboard and looks at it. Embedded across the top of the metal clipboard is a thin device, it's displaying the following information:

Research completed and compiled in Time Line: (pi^3)c Parent Timestamp: Dec, 12, 1678. 5:56 P.M. Time Line: (pi)c
Current Relative Time: <<ITCs ARE NOT RESPONDING>> Current Absolute Time: <<ITCs ARE NOT RESPONDING>>
Research performed by: (Head) Dr.WDGaster (pi^6)c2, RSanchez (pi)c-137, DHolmes c-3^pi
Document compiled by: CSGaster (pi^6)c2

All the documents on this clipboard seem to be legible, but also boring.

Frisk reads the first paragraph... "Mimitrons? That's what magic is made of?"

"actually... turns out that's wrong, there's more than one particle. the royal scientist was adamant that he was right, so we kept going with the mimitron theory. ended up stalling our program, actually... but when i think about it, it's a good thing he was so stubborn... for other reasons."

"I am guessing you're the one initialled CSG?"

"yep. you can skip most of it. it should be a comment by me."

Frisk does as instructed and eventually they get to the bottom. Frisk looks up at Sans, somewhat confused.

Sans provided an answer before Frisk could ask. "i started doing my own research."

Frisk reads the last line of the document: "a hollow soul can piggyback on souls that match their primary colour. creepy huh? -csg"

Frisk doesn't have to think very hard to connect the dots... "Chara... is a hollow SOUL?"

"that's their name? huh, so the queen and king's adopted kid turned out to have a hollow soul... interesting."

"Yea... what... what are you going to do?"

"we can't have them hitching a ride on your soul, kiddo. i'm gonna extract 'em."

"Will it hurt?"

"naw, you’ll be fine... but tell me, how'd you learn their name?"

"When I went to sleep a couple nights ago, I had a really spooky dream. It was all dark and echoey, and I started to hear them speaking to me."

"wow. we're cutting it pretty close. any more than that and you'd be possessed... well, no time to lose. let's go. you can keep that clipboard, i don't need it."

Sans leaves the room and Frisk puts the clipboard in their pocket... somehow... and follows. They go through the door on the end of the hallway marked "SOUL Extraction Room." The room is fairly large, and there is a big contraption in the middle suspended over an operating table. The contraption looks like a big cylinder with all sorts of tubes, wires, dimly glowing lights, and at least eight weird armatures that have even weirder things on the end. It's pretty unsettling to see, but fortunately there are no dry patches of dark red anywhere near it. Along the left and right walls of the room are glass tubes that seem to vanish into the ceiling. At the back of the room, in the left corner, there's a door and what's probably a long one-way window along the rest of the wall. Sans goes into the room at the back, waving for Frisk to follow.

Inside the small room, immediately to the right, is a long row of connected consoles, there are also a few chairs.

Sans moves over to the console and speaks. "ya wanna see a simulation of what i'm gonna do, before i do it?"

Frisk nods.

Sans tries to turn on one of the consoles, but it doesn't respond.

"welp, looks like i have to go get the power running after all... I was hoping the backup would be enough. i'll be back."

Curious about something that has been bugging them, Frisk asks "That person in the big tube thing... Why is he there?... What does CU-270 mean?" before Sans has a chance to leave.

Sans sighs. It takes a few moments for him to respond. "the humans here did a lot of experiments to gain immortality. and, one day, they discovered how to become liches... a lich is a human who bound their soul to a phylactery to gain immortality. boss monsters can too, becoming monster liches... from there they looked into making super soldiers... they wanted to get the best of both worlds, and so they made hybrid liches. a human partially converted into a skeleton monster, then turned into a lich; a human body, with monster bones... that's what's supposed to be in the tube. that one is a 'failed' attempt, it's too small. the tube is marked cu-270 because it's a combat unit, from the 270 series. each series had eight thousand iterations, each in different timelines. he was the last of the 270 line, so he got the designation."

Still curious, Frisk asks "so... why are all the tubes but his destroyed?"

Sans turns his face away, his eyes go dark, and he replies in a quiet tone. "...i don't want to talk about the rest, but i... we put him to sleep instead."

Frisk thinks they know why Sans doesn't want to talk about the others, but they are a little confused; so they ask "wait... if they're liches, how'd they die?"

"if you destroy a lich's phylactery before destroying them, or before they can make a new body, they die permanently."

"...Oh. Did you... destroy his?"

"no... but even if i did, he's like you; his soul is pure red... actually, now that i think about it... it's kinda funny. over two million tries to get a pure red soul, and when they finally got one it turned out to be the opposite of what they wanted..."

Sans roughs up Frisk's hair and says "i'd better get going, we probably don't have a lot of time."

"OK."

As Sans leaves he sees Frisk begin to examine the consoles...

Sans makes his way back to the Cafeteria and takes a shortcut beyond the heavily locked double doors.

 

A face long forgotten flashes through Sans' mind... but he ignores it and continues down the large hallway. The human side of the complex is just as deserted. There are more piles of dust than pools of dried blood... Sans clears his mind, and continues. The large hallway has three sets of doubledoors along both sides, but they are all barricaded; which is fine since his target is straight ahead. As he gets close to the generator room, the hallway seems to get darker; he doesn't react. A voice echoes through his mind, it sounds like an old and posh human scientist that thinks he's above the laws of the universe.

'Sans... I thought it was you, but I wasn't really sure until you teleported past the door; just like old times... Tell me, how is life treating you?'

Sans ignores the voice, continuing onward to his destination.

The voice speaks thoughtfully. 'You know Sans, you really shouldn't have come back here. Not after what you two did.'

Sans continues to ignore the voice. He breaks open the locked doors to the generator room, with a few well placed bones. He sees the cause of power loss immediately... 'looks like the humans sabotaged it, won't be getting any power in this state...'

Mockingly, the voice responds. 'Surprised? You didn't really think they would make it easy for you, did you?'

A quiet shattering noise from down the hallway gets Sans' attention for a moment, but he can't tell where it's coming from. He brushes it off as Frisk breaking a beaker while exploring his old office, and examines the generator again... it may be easier to fix than he thought. He moves the debris away from the generator and begins to create makeshift parts out of bullets, carefully shaping them to fit perfectly. When he places the first part, however, it's destroyed by an enchantment.

Sans sighs. 'magic fail-safes to keep it from being broken by magic are keeping it from being fixed... by magic... only humans.'

Sans gets up and turns around to leave the room, but stops as he sees a tall shadowed humanoid figure floating in the doorway. Sans tenses up for a moment.

In an amused tone, the voice responds to his reaction. 'You didn't think I was dead did you? You should know better, Sans...'

More annoyed than intimidated, Sans demands out loud "what do you want?"

In a false voice of hope, the voice responds. 'Freedom. What else?'

Sans responds nonchalantly, "not gonna happen."

Amused, the voice says 'oh, silly Sans...' Then angrily continues 'I wasn't ASKING!'

Sans sends a wave of bones crashing into the figure, it turns to dust.

Deep and menacing laughter echoes through the halls. 'As feisty as ever... You truly are Dr. Gaster's son!'

Sans' eyes go dark at the mention of that name...

Angrily and in a serious tone, Sans retorts. "Don't you dare say that name..."

Amused, the voice continues. 'Struck a nerve, have I? You know, if I didn't know better, I would say you actually hate him; but we both know that isn't true.... In any case. Why bother protecting his honour... when you should be protecting that delicious little snack you brought?'

Sans remains silent... but, after a few moments, he takes a breath to calm down and return to his usual self.

"heh, that kid is too much for you... but if you try to hurt 'em, you're gonna have a bad time."

In a falsely curious and belittling tone, the voice antagonizes Sans. 'Oh, what's this? Our little warrior is fond... of a Human? One of the very creatures that turned him into what he is? Tortured him and turned him into a killing machine?'

Sans clenches his hands into fists... but doesn't respond. He tries to clear his mind.

Tauntingly, the voice continues. 'My my... this is much better than I anticipated... It will be so... so... satisfying to tear them away... Watch them closely "Comic" Sans, because their time is almost up... and I would hate it if you missed the show.'

Crazed, hysterical, laughter fills the halls. It slowly dies out after a few moments.

Sans is not happy. He walks out of the generator room and down the hallway, takes a shortcut to the room with the backup generator, and looks over all the wires... 'such a mess.'

 

He doesn't know how long it'll be until the lich forms another body, so he tries to work fast. Sans touches the wires and uses Pattern magic to figure out which wire goes to which room, unplugging wires to rooms he doesn't need. When he's done, the hallways are pitch black. He adjusts some of the machinery to direct all the power to where he wants it. After that, he goes into the now pitch black hallway and manifests a Yellow lens to pierce through the darkness. It's a little awkward for him though, since he has to hold onto it and use only one eye the whole way. Sans makes his way back to the SOUL room and sees Frisk, patiently sitting on the table. The lights in the room are a little brighter, and the machine sounds active. He allows the lens to vanish.

"hey kiddo, sorry i took so long. i ran into some trouble. wanna get started so we can get outta here?"

Frisk speaks in a concerned voice. "Yea, I heard some pretty creepy laughing. Is everything OK?"

"oh, you heard that too huh? don't worry, probably just the pa system playing an old recording of one of the crazy human scientists."

"So, you gonna show me the simulation?"

"unfortunately kiddo, we don't have the power for that. i had to route power from the backup generator to go only here and the teleporter room."

Frisk is a little hesitant. "Oh... Okay. Well, I trust you... so... I guess I need to lay on the table?"

Sans replies reassuringly, while heading to the back room, "yea, just lay down and relax. I'd also suggest closing your eyes, it can be pretty... eerie seeing your soul get pulled out of your body."

"Okay, if you say so... Actually, Sans, there is something I need to ask before we continue."

"okay, shoot... well, not literally that could hurt." Sans lets out a soft chuckle.

Worried, Frisk asks "will Chara survive? Is there any way we can help them?"

Sans pauses for a moment at the door to the console room. He looks back at Frisk.

In a lower tone, Sans says "yea, they'll survive... but i don't know if we can help 'em. i've never seen a soul change, and i don't think it's possible."

With hope in their voice, Frisk asks "Can we try? I... I promised that I would help them save... someone."

"that's... actually pretty promising... sure, frisk, i don't sea any harm in trying."

Frisk feels a bit more calm. "Thanks, Sans."

Before he closes the door, Sans leans out and reassuringly says, "and hey, don't worry buddy, you've taken care of us pretty well. so, it's my turn to take care of you. everything will be ok."

Frisk nods.

Sans walks into the back room and does his thing. The device above the table comes to life, mechanized straps move into place and hold Frisk down, and the armatures with the weird devices move closer to Frisk. The whole thing begins to hum, and Frisk starts to feel... weightless. They close their eyes.

The room is filled with brilliant red light, and Frisk is floating a little bit off of the table; if not for the straps, they would probably go higher. The armatures move around Frisk's SOUL, making clicking noises, cutting invisible strands that Sans can only see with the help of the consoles. After a few minutes, Frisk's SOUL gently floats out of their body and they go limp; their SOUL is unusually large, but only barely. An infinitesimally small line of emptiness marks the border of Frisk's SOUL, and Chara's. Upon examination, Sans notices something odd. Frisk's SOUL is linked to Chara's in a way that makes it look like... Frisk is possessing them.

'odd... I expected it to be the other way around. this kid has quite an effect on people, it seems... we'll have to watch out for that when they're older...'

Sans' "Big Brother" mode is now engaged as he works to seperate the SOULs... 'toriel never said to stop watching over them... so that obviously means i should make sure no one takes advantage of them, especially now that we're on the surface.'

He pretends to complain to himself. 'look at you kid, makin' me work... geez.'

Sans proceeds with the operation, but he realizes that the reversed link will cause some pain when broken. 'sorry bud, but... this is gonna sting a little...'

After finding all the links between the two SOULs, Sans slowly cuts them. Once the operation is done, the center of the contraption lowers down and collects the SOULs. After a few moments, both SOULs reappear in the glass tubes on opposite sides of the room; one brilliant red, the other... a thin red shell. Only its outline gives any indication of what Primary aspect it used to have, the rest is empty. After a few more moments, the hollow SOUL is placed in a small heart shaped container made of glass, and Frisk's SOUL is taken back into the contraption before being held over their chest. The armatures begin repairing the previously cut links, and Frisk wakes up.

"That... was soo... WEIRD!!"

Sans was expecting a reaction, but that was not it. "heh, have fun?"

Frisk excitedly says "YEAH! I was all floaty and stuff! And I could see what was going on still, but like... not from my eyes!"

"well i'm glad you had a good time."

Pretending to be annoyed, Frisk remarks "Also, you said it wouldn't hurt!"

"oh, yea, sorry about that... i may have lye'd a little. good news though, you were starting to possess them. it was pretty funny to see, actually, but it means we really can try to save 'em."

Frisk gives an almost visible smile, they are happy...

Sans walks over to the heart container holding Chara's SOUL. "Here they are, kiddo, you wanna hold 'em?"

"Sure."

Sans hands Frisk the small container and says "alright, lets go. we don't want our... unexpected host to find us."

Frisk needs to use both hands to hold the container, but otherwise it's pretty light. Looks efficient too, no wasted space. Frisk can see intricately woven runes and metal wires through out it...

Frisk thinks about what they promised Chara... 'How are we supposed to work together now?...'

The two leave the SOUL Extraction room and begin making their way to the cafeteria. Sans holds Frisk's hand to guide them through the darkness and uses his other hand to create another yellow lens and hold it to his eye.

Frisk snickers at the sight.

"Heh, you look like you're holding a monocle to your eye. Fancy Sans."

Sans grins a little wider, but quietly remarks. "we should probably try to be quite, wouldn't want to disturb our 'host.'"

Frisk nods.

The two begin to make their way through the cafeteria, but Sans stops suddenly and slowly begins to back up as soft, wet, footsteps start to echo in the hallway they're headed to. Sans is more being cautious than he is worried, however.

The footsteps grow closer, slowly, but stop suddenly as a voice begins to echo in Sans' mind.

In a fake disappointed tone, the voice says 'Oh... Sans. Leaving so soon? You haven't even introduced me to your... little friend...'

Sans doesn't reply, instead, he calms himself and looks to Frisk briefly. Sans tries to take a shortcut, but his attempt is blocked by something; so instead he picks Frisk up, who has a hint of worry on their face.

An unnatural darkness beings creeping into the cafeteria from the double doors...

'Sans... do you really think holding them will keep them safe? A Lich always gets what they want, Sans... and I want their SOUL...'

Sans retorts harshly. "over my dust, david."

The voice replies insincerely. 'I am flattered, you actually remember my name. Too bad... we could have been such great friends!'

The darkness turns into a dark fog that fills the room. Sans' Yellow Lens can't see through it... After a few moments, however, the darkness gathers and a tall humanoid figure coalesces. A vaguely human body that looks poorly preserved, wearing a tattered lab coat, floats in the middle of the cafeteria. Orange flames form where eyes would be, and the lich gives off a faint glow.

'You can tear my form apart as much as you like Sans, but I have reached the point where I can build a new one in mere minutes... you ca-'

The voice is cut off as Sans initiates his attack, saying "i don't need permission to destroy you." He only has to use a single blaster to take his opponent down. He doesn't lower his guard.

In a falsely disappointed tone, the voice says 'Oh, you noticed did you? I suppose it was silly of me to think illusions would work on something with the Aspect of Justice.'

Magic swords manifest and swing themselves towards Sans and Frisk, repeatedly. He dodges them, but is almost struck by a follow up attack; if not for Frisk forcing him off-balance, the swords would have hit.

The sound of footsteps begin to echo through the halls again, this time somewhat faster and with more force...

Amused, the voice says 'You didn't release that runt did you? Hah! If you think that thing can stop me-'

Sans cuts him of, in a matter-of-fact tone. "jokes on you, i didn't release it... i put it to sleep."

A hint of fear creeps into the falsely confident voice. 'I... That... That complicates matters...'

"yep. truce?"

The voice responds harshly 'HAHAHAHAHA! You wish! Do you really think I'm so incompetent that I can't handle a two-bit renegade and a runt?'

"can't blame a guy for trying..."

Dark spikes being to shoot out from the ground, and Sans dodges them with ease. He dashes to the end of the cafeteria, continuing to dodge spikes as they shoot out from the floor, walls, and ceiling. Sans doesn't know how the hybrid will act when it sees them, but he has to get to the teleporter room. When Sans hesitates to turn the corner, Frisk speaks up.

"Sans, you don't have to carry me. I've dodged a lot worse!"

"sorry, kiddo, but i can't risk you getting left behind... or worse."

With that, Sans steels himself, adjusts Frisk to hold them over one shoulder, quickly goes around the corner, and sprints down the hallway. The hybrid designated as CU-270 is near the intersection. Sans sprints faster.

'There is nowhere you can run, no timeline you can go to, where I wont find you Sans! And now that I know you are alive, I will find you. And I will end you!!'

The hybrid vanishes after looking towards the wall, seemingly attracted to something. Sans continues to run, he only slows down to turn corners. Beads of sweat begin to accumulate on his forehead.

'But I wont just stop at you Sans! Now that I know you are alive I will hunt all of you monsters down!! You will wish you had died in that accident!! ALL OF YOU WILL FALL BY MY-...'

'...No... NO!! NO NO NO!!! HOW DID YOU FIND-'

* A YOUNG VOICE IS HEARD CLEARLY THROUGH THE VOID, WITH AN ABSOLUTE DECLARATION.
"D I E,  YOU  P A T H E T I C  CREATURE."

 

The screams of hundreds of tortured SOULs being released reverberates through every bone in Sans' body, Frisk doesn't seem to notice; it looks like they're unconscious. The Lich's phylactery is no more.

A guttural choking sound echoes through the halls, followed by an eerie silence... Without the aid of their Phylactery, the Lich permanently dies.

Shortly after, a large explosion rocks the facility. Sans manages to keep his footing and pace... his skull is covered in sweat from the exertion.

Sans continues to run with darkened eye sockets, and a very visible frown.

When they make it to the teleporter room, Sans is almost panicking.

Sans tries to wake Frisk, but fails. They were put to sleep with magic at some point.

He uses magic to wake them, then says "bud, I need you to do EXACTLY what I say."

Before Frisk responds Sans goes to the console, thankful that he kept power going to this room.

Frisk nods, but asks "If that one was a failure, why are you two so scared of him?"

Sans continues working at the console and says "Not now. Grab that device, put it in the center, and press the top."

Frisk follows the instructions, the device clicks and the top pops up slightly.

"Now, twist the top till it clicks again; should be fast."

After completing the steps, the device segments into four pieces and unfolds; a cylinder shaped core remains in the center with perforations in it. A mechanical arm from the ceiling latches onto the core of the device and pulls it half way up. The segments arch down and extend. After a few moments, the now pointed fan shaped device with downward arched propellers begins to glow and slowly spin.

Curiously Frisk asks "Why do we-"

Sternly, Sans responds "Not now" then quickly moves near the center with Frisk. Another large explosion shakes the facility, the power flickers for a moment... The machinery begins to hum, and the arched "fan blades" begin to spin and emit a white shimmer.

Outside the door and down the hall, a figure suddenly pops into existence. it looks to be about the size of a teenager, but otherwise it's too dark to see any other physical features. Their white pin prick eyes seem to pierce Sans' very being... Seeing that creature move without a SOUL... is terrifying. After a moment it... waves? The action briefly takes Sans off-guard, but then it sprints forward. Before the hybrid is able to get close, a brilliant light fills the room. The pair find themselves in a similar room with significantly less dust, and no spinning device above them.

Frisk speaks up first. "I'm sorry Sans, as soon as I saw that kid in the hallway I fell asleep..."

Sans takes a moment to calm down before speaking. "no, i'm sorry frisk... to answer your question, that device had preprogrammed timespace coordinates. it guaranteed that we would go back exactly where, and when, we came from. also made our escape faster."

Frisk looks up at Sans, expectantly, their face is visibly worried.

Sans Sighs... "i worked on the project that made the hybrids... though not directly... i... don't know how it'll act toward me, if given the chance but, honestly, i'm not all that scared of it... i'm scared of what it might do to you."

Frisk grabs Sans' hand.

Sans pats their head and asks "...do you think even the worst person can change?"

Frisk contemplates this for a moment. "...That depends on if they want to, but If you're really asking if I think you can change, then I think you already have."

Sans begins to grin again.

Curious, Frisk asks "Hey Sans... If the hybrid really is, you know, trying to hurt us or something... wouldn't it just be able to use that egg thing to come here?"

Sans sighs... "one problem at a time, kiddo... besides, i dont think they can do that; the lab doesn't have enough power for a second teleport..."

"You know, Sans, you keep going back and fourth between calling him an 'it,' 'they,' and 'him'... why is that?"

Sans looks away from Frisk for a moment, then replies sadly "i suppose that's because if i acknowledge that the hybrid is more than an 'it,' i will have to admit to all my past mistakes... which means..."

Frisk doesn't reply, they just nod and pull Sans along. Frisk shares their Sandwich with Sans and the two group back up with Alphys and Undyne.

 

* THE CREATURE IS AWAKE, THE STARS ARE BEGINNING TO FADE.
* ANOTHER STRANGE SENSATION IS FELT THROUGH THE VOID.
* A SECOND SAVE STAR VANISHES.

Chapter Text

As Papyrus leaves the manor, he thinks out loud of how he will solve the problems plaguing his friends.

"PERHAPS THE HUMANS WOULD BE MORE RECEPTIVE TO MONSTERS... AFTER EATING MY SPAGHETTI!!... OR MAYBE... I CAN SHOW THEM MY AWESOME PUZZLE MAKING SKILLS!! OR!!! OR I COULD DO BOTH!! YES, I WILL DO BOTH NYEH HEH HEH HEH!!"

With this declaration, Papyrus goes back into the manor and into the kitchen to make spaghetti. But alas, there are no noodles.

"DRAT!!! WE ARE OUT OF NOODLES, I WILL HAVE TO MAKE SOME FROM SCRATCH."

Papyrus gathers the necessary ingredients, but quickly realizes that he doesn't actually know how to make spaghetti noodles. He goes to find Marceline, to see if she can help. It doesn't take long, she is in her study.

Upon walking in to the room, Papyrus declares "MARCELINE!! I AM HERE TO OFFER YOU A GREAT OPPORTUNITY!!"

Marceline looks up from her reading, and in her signature air of mystery, she plays along, "oh? What is this opportunity Papyrus?"

Papyrus, enthused that she actually asked what the opportunity is, asks "WILL YOU ASSIST ME, THE GREAT PAPYRUS, IN MAKING SPAGHETTI NOODLES?"

Curious, she replies "sure, Papyrus, but what is the spaghetti for? Dinner is not for several hours."

To which Papyrus stood in his "Valiant hero" pose and declares "I AM GOING TO MAKE SPAGHETTI FOR THE HUMANS THAT ARE HAVING DIFFICULTY GETTING ALONG WITH MONSTERS, AND I AM ALSO GOING TO SHOW THEM MY AMAZING PUZZLE MAKING SKILLS!!!"

Marceline gives a slight smile, and replies gently. "Unfortunately, Papyrus, we do not have enough for a problem that large; and I do not think they would enjoy puzzles... perhaps, instead, you could talk to them or find other activities?"

Papyrus is displeased from hearing the information, and thinks for a while before replying. "HMMM... PERHAPS... PERHAPS!!! I CAN GO AND SHOW THEM MY MAGIC AGAIN, EXCEPT THIS TIME NOT AS AWESOME AS LAST TIME!! I WOULD NOT WANT THEM TO GET OVERLY EXCITED AND DO A VIOLENCE!"

Marceline considers his new approach and adds, "I will go with you, to help make sure it isn't too... exciting for them. I would also like to see your magic demonstration."

Enthusiastically, Papyrus declares "THEN IT'S SETTLED!! WE SHALL GO AND DEMONSTRATE HOW GREAT I AM, AND BY DOING SO WE WILL EASE THE WORRIES HUMANS HAVE ABOUT MONSTERS!!"

Marceline puts her book back on the bookshelf after inserting a bookmark. Once done, she grabs a parasol and the two leave the manor.

They head to the Town hall, to get information about who is having issues with monsters, but Asgore is already there working with the human leaders on a project. They decide that walking around town would be better than waiting for someone to be available. Papyrus comes up with an idea and gathers several monsters, then heads to the new clearing made for the children to play in. With the help of a Washua, they soften the ground in the area, with the help of a Vegitoid they even out all the bumps and make the dirt even, and with a Vulkin's help they quickly dry the ground. Now that a decently sized area has been smoothed out, Papyrus begins to plan.

"HMMM LETS SEE... SMALL HUMANS ENJOY... AH YES, I SHOULD TAKE FRISK'S BACKYARD AS AN EXAMPLE!! THEY HAVE A 'SWING SET,' A 'SEE-SAW,' AND A SMALL 'POOL' PERHAPS THESE SMALL HUMANS WILL ALSO ENJOY THOSE!!"

Papyrus gets to work, creating large bones to make a swing set with; and has the Vegitoid make sturdy vines to keep it all together. Papyrus grabs some old tires and has the Vegitoid make more vines to hold them to the swing set.

"NO DOUBT THE HUMANS WILL BE AMAZED BY MY WONDERFUL CRAFTSMANSHIP!! HMMM LET'S SEE, I THINK WE SHOULD ADD THE SEE-SAW OVER THERE... AND MAYBE WE CAN MAKE THE POOL SHAPED LIKE MY FACE!"

The team got to work, a bone see-saw, held together with vines, is constructed quickly. Shortly after, they begin digging... but Papyrus doesn't like how slow it is going, so he lets the Vegitoid go wild. After the pit is made, Papyrus shapes it to look like his face. Marceline assists by using her vantage point to provide instructions on how to make it look better. After they are done shaping the dirt, the Vulkin hops in and begins putting magma everywhere to make it all solid and keep the water in. The pool isn't that large, about four feet wide, six feet tall, and one foot deep. Washua fills the face-shaped pool with water, and replenishes it as it bubbles away from the heated rock; eventually it settles down and the water is no longer hot.

"NO DOUBT THE SMALL HUMANS WILL ABSOLUTELY LOVE THESE THINGS WE MADE FOR THEM! NYEH HEH HEH HEH!!! NOW WE JUST NEED TO SHOW THEM HOW IT WORKS. HMMM... WASHUA YOU ... PLAY IN THE POOL. VEGITOID, UH... YOU CAN ALSO PLAY IN THE POOL!! VULKIN... WOULD PROBABLY MAKE THE POOL TOO HOT, SO YOU CAN PLAY ON THE SEE-SAW WITH ME! AND MARCELINE CAN SWING ON THE SWINGS."

And so, the group played on the newly constructed set. Children begin to show up after school lets them out for lunch break, they are cautious at first but Marceline helps ease their worries. The Vegitoid, Vulkin, and Washua all leave the playground to go back to their work. Papyrus and Margaret stay behind to watch over the children. The swings are easy enough to convince the children to play on, but the see-saw takes a little convincing.

Marceline keeps the children from going into the pool; can't have them getting in trouble for returning to school wet. Over all, the swing set and see-saw was a hit. A few parents come by to look at it, and a few of them praise the efforts.

Papyrus is quite happy, but he does not feel like he is done. Surely there are more humans that need some help, and he will find them. The two walk together and find a group of adult humans that are taking a break, they do not look happy seeing the skeleton.

Papyrus speaks as enthusiastically as ever. "HELLO HUMANS, I AM THE GREAT PAPYRUS! MAY I ASK, WHAT CAUSES YOU TO BE SO UPSET?"

One of the men speaks up, gruff and annoyed. "Why don't you just leave us alone, monster. We were doing just fine before you showed up. We don't need your help!"

To which Marceline responds coolly, "if the monsters are not needed in the village, then I am sure we can move the manor somewhere more suitable for them. You don't need power, do you?"

The man doesn't reply, he just looks away and sulks silently.

Marceline assures Papyrus "don't worry, Papyrus, monsters have been of great help to us; some people just don't know how to graciously accept it. Thinking that humans were the victor, and therefore shouldn't be helped by the 'losers,' tends to warp the perspective of many."

The man retorts angrily, "you're lucky you're the wife of Sir Addams, or I wouldn't be so kind."

Marceline turns her face in disapproval and begins to leave with Papyrus, while saying "some people also have no manners, Papyrus, and throw around threats they couldn't even dream of pursuing."

The man doesn't respond, and Papyrus stops to think.

Jubilantly Papyrus declares "I HAVE AN IDEA! A SURE FIRE WAY TO GET YOU TO LIKE ME!"

The human looks unamused "there is no way I am going to like you, monster."

"HUMAN! I CHALLENGE YOU... TO A DUEL!!!"

The human is taken aback, "you wanna fight? Do you really think you stand a chance against us?"

"NOW NOW HUMAN, I AM NOT CHALLENGING ALL OF YOU. JUST ONE OF YOU!! THE GREAT PAPYRUS WOULD NOT WANT TO EMBARRASS ALL OF YOU AT ONCE!"

Full of himself, one of the larger men in the group stands up and says "HAH! You think you will embarrass us? I'll fight you, monster, but don't expect me to go easy on you!"

"I WOULDN'T HAVE IT ANY OTHER WAY!! LET US GO WHERE WE WILL NOT ACCIDENTALLY BREAK THINGS."

The human nodded, and the two groups went to the nearby training grounds. With his friends standing by on the side lines, the human gets ready to fight.

Papyrus notices that the human lacks a weapon, however, and says "THIS WILL NOT DO HUMAN! YOU NEED A WEAPON OR ELSE IT WILL NOT BE FAIR."

The human just gets more upset by this and shouts "I don't need a weapon to fight you! Stop stalling and let's get this over with!"

"AS YOU WISH, BUT FIRST HOW ABOUT A GAMBLE? IF I WIN, YOU WILL BE MY FRIEND!!"

"...What? You think I am going to lose? To you!?"

"MAYBE NOT! I BELIEVE IN YOU HUMAN, I AM SURE YOU CAN WIN."

"...If I win, all of you monsters have to leave!"

Marceline began to speak up, but Papyrus interrupted her "I ACCEPT YOUR TERMS, LET US BEGIN!"

The fighting commences. The human is actually rather concerned at first, he doesn't know how to fight something that is all bones. Do monsters even feel pain? The human brushes aside his concerns and swings at Papyrus... he misses.

Papyrus follows up with a series of... very easy to avoid bones. The human doesn't even have to move, he is rather insulted.

Agitated, the human yells "WHAT THE HELL?!? Fight me like you mean it!!"

Papyrus, with a heroic tone, says "NOT TO WORRY HUMAN. I, THE GREAT PAPYRUS, AM TAKING THIS FIGHT SERIOUSLY!"

The human attacks and misses again, and another series of easily avoidable bones pass by.

Feeling Insulted and starting to get even angrier, the human shouts "What are you, an IDIOT!?"

Papyrus responds in an encouraging voice. "H-HOW SELFLESS!! LOUDLY INSULTING YOURSELF LIKE THAT, SO THAT I WOULD FEEL BETTER ABOUT FIGHTING YOU! NOT TO WORRY HUMAN, I AM SURE THAT YOU WILL HIT ME EVENTUALLY!!!"

Another attack, another miss, and another series of easily avoidable bones... The anger on the human's face is clear, and the group of humans are also getting worked up.

The human has had enough, "Screw it!! I'm not gonna stand here and be insulted like this, if you wont fight me for real then what is the point!"

Papyrus places his hand on his chest and lets his small cape flap in the non-existent wind while replying "I SEE, PERHAPS I HAVE BEEN GOING TOO EASY ON YOU... I APOLOGIZE HUMAN! LET'S SEE HOW YOU HANDLE MY FABLED 'BLUE ATTACK!'"

The human's face goes from anger to fear, as a wall of unavoidable cyan bones make their way towards him. The human doesn't try to run, if this is how he dies then he will be a martyr to prove how evil monsters really are.

The bones pass through him harmlessly... Now he is even more upset, he begins yelling "ARE YOU SERIOUS!? YOUR ATTACK DOESN'T EVEN-" but then he feels... different. His SOUL drops to the ground, it's blue now. A small bone races towards it and collides with his SOUL. It doesn't do much damage, but it takes the human by surprise.

"YOU'RE BLUE NOW. THAT'S MY ATTACK!! NYEH HEH HEH HEH HEH HEH HEH HEH!!! YOUR SOUL CAN JUMP, BY THE WAY."

The human races forward and swings, this time managing to glance off Papyrus' 'Battle body.' Then Papyrus releases a series of bones and the human begins Frantically trying to avoid them before jumping over them. The human is hit by one of the bones. He is no less angry, but now he is worried and realizes he should have taken up the offer of a weapon.

Angrily the human responds "Why didn't you just use that from the start!?" then swings at papyrus again, another hit; this time he hits Papyrus in the face... it hurts his hand.

"I KNEW YOU WOULD BE ABLE TO HIT ME HUMAN!! YOU ARE DOING SO GOOD!"

The next series of bones is more difficult to avoid, the human is hit again.

"Stop fighting dirty you damn monster!!"

"WOULD YOU LIKE A WEAPON HUMAN? I NOTICED THAT YOU HURT YOUR HAND WHEN YOU PUNCHED ME IN THE FACE."

Marceline is worried for Papyrus, why would he offer a weapon to someone who is fighting him? She doesn't try to intervene, Papyrus seems to be handling the situation well enough.

"I don't need your damn sympathy monster!" Another swing, another hit, and a hurt wrist; the human didn't strike properly.

The next series of bones is harder than the last, but the human is getting used to the jumping and manages to avoid being hit.

"Ha! Your stupid attack missed!"

"THE GREAT PAPYRUS IS SO PROUD OF YOU HUMAN, SURELY YOU WILL ALSO BE ABLE TO AVOID MY NEXT ATTACK!!"

The battle ramps up, Papyrus sends a harder configuration of bones at his opponent who doesn't manage to avoid them all.

"FEEL FREE TO GIVE UP AT ANY TIME HUMAN. I WOULD LOVE TO BE YOUR FRIEND!!"

"I will never be friends with you!" Another swing, but the human hesitates and misses. The next bone attack is much harder for the human to avoid, they get hit multiple times. The human is beginning to get tired. His friends are starting to get riled up and look like they may join the fight soon.

"WELL... IF YOU TRULY FEEL THAT WAY, THEN I WILL HAVE NO CHOICE BUT TO USE MY 'SPECIAL ATTACK' AND SHOW YOU JUST HOW GREAT I REALLY AM. THEN YOU WILL BEG TO BE MY FRIEND! NYEH HEH HEH!"

The human grits his teeth and readies to swing, but his friends toss him one of the training weapons. "Teach this skeleton some respect! Don't let him play you for a fool Greg!"

Greg takes the wooden sword and swings it at Papyrus, managing to hit his chest. Then Papyrus sends an even harder series of bones, Greg doesn't manage to avoid them all.

He angrily yells "Stop playing around and fight for real!" Then swings again but misses.

"OH HO! SO YOU TRULY WISH TO SEE MY 'SPECIAL ATTACK?' SO BE IT!!"

A difficult series of bones rushes towards Greg, who avoids them fairly easily, but then a large dog-like skull with googly eyes suddenly appears and shoots a beam through the air above him, restricting how high his SOUL can jump to be just barely enough. Greg is taken off-guard and gets hit by the attacks on the ground. He continues to fumble and panic as the bone attacks continue to advance. He is reduced to one HP by an attack and falls backwards, fearing for his life... but everything suddenly stops.

Proudly, and in his normal heroic pose, Papyrus declares "WORRY NOT HUMAN. I HAVE ELECTED TO GRANT YOU MERCY!! I SHALL SPARE YOU!"

Fear fills the humans. The group of humans are angry and fearful. Greg, looking up at Papyrus with fear in his eyes yells "What!? You just gonna stop? I know you want to kill me, MONSTER, so do it!!"

In his usual gusto filled voice, Papyrus retorts 'I, THE GREAT PAPYRUS, WOULD NEVER KILL A HUMAN!! NOT EVER! AND I BELIEVE THAT YOU WOULD NEVER KILL A MONSTER! BECAUSE YOU KNOW THAT WE ARE GOOD. YOU ARE JUST UPSET BECAUSE YOU FEEL LIKE WE ARE MAKING YOU LOOK BAD!! BUT FEAR NOT! IF ANYTHING, YOU ARE MAKING YOURSELF LOOK BAD, AND THAT IS SOMETHING THAT CAN BE CHANGED!! SO, WHAT DO YOU SAY, HUMAN? WILL YOU BE MY FRIEND?"

The group of humans are too angry and full of fear to really think right, but Greg... takes a moment to think.

"You... could have killed me at any time during that whole fight... but you are sparing me. That just makes me feel worse! How can I be your friend, knowing that you could kill me at any time!?"

"SILLY HUMAN, FRIENDS DO NOT TRY TO DO A VIOLENCE AGAINST FRIENDS. HAVING ONE AS GREAT AS I AM BE YOUR FRIEND IS THE BEST THING YOU COULD EVER HOPE FOR! TOGETHER WE CAN HELP HUMANS BE MORE COMFORTABLE AROUND THEIR NEW MONSTER FRIENDS!"

The humans on the sidelines try to encourage Greg to keep attacking, that Papyrus is out of magic and bluffing... but Greg is not convinced. This whole time, Papyrus has been slowly increasing the difficulty... at first it was insulting, but after that attack... he realizes that Papyrus never really wanted to hurt him. It was all a show... That attack could have killed him from the very beginning. Experiencing it first hand was horrifying... Greg is beginning to have conflicting thoughts and feelings.

"WE MADE A DEAL HUMAN GREG, ARE YOU GOING TO HONOUR IT?"

Then... none of his feelings mattered. He did make a deal. A very unfair deal. "Fine. I'll be your friend for now, but don't think this means I am gonna be nice to you. I still don't like you."

"THAT IS PERFECTLY FINE! I UNDERSTAND THAT IT WILL TAKE YOU TIME TO ADJUST TO BEING FRIENDS WITH SOMEONE AS GREAT AS ME!! NYEH HEH HEH HEH!"

Greg leaves and his friends follow, asking "you're not really gonna be friends with that thing are you?!"

To which he replies reluctantly, "...I made a deal, I'd be no better than a monster if I went back on it. Come on, I'm tired and hungry."

Marceline looks over to Papyrus who begins shaking subtly.

When the humans are well out of range, his face changes to one of worry and he says "I DIDN'T EXPECT THAT... I ALMOST GOT TURNED TO DUST!"

Marceline puts her hand on Papyrus' shoulder and says "that was quite an impressive display, but you should be more careful. It would be a shame to lose a friend."

Papyrus stops his shaking and stands proudly, "I AM ALWAYS CAREFUL!! NYEH HEH HEH HEH! ...I THINK WE HAVE HELPED ENOUGH PEOPLE TODAY, PERHAPS WE SHOULD RETURN TO THE MANOR."

Marceline agrees with a nod and the two return to the manor.

Chapter Text

Alphys, Undyne, Frisk, and Sans are working together in the CORE power distribution center. Well, everyone but Sans actually; he's on the side, contemplating the events that occurred at the secret human lab. Sans has a bad feeling, like something really bad is going to happen soon. He tries to shake the feeling, but it sticks around. Alphys fusses over how the power the CORE provides has to be converted to non-magic energy, while Undyne and Frisk hold parts for her.

Under Sans' shirt, a very pale red glow can be seen, he is carrying the SOUL container inside of his ribcage. At first it was a joke, but they realized that it would be better if he held onto it.

Sans pulls Frisk to the side after a few moments, while the other two are preoccupied.

"hey, frisk... are you getting that same..."

Sans pauses, seemingly trying to find a word Frisk would understand.

"Foreboding feeling? Yea, why?"

"heh, didn't think you knew that word... anyway. after what happened back there, i think it'd be best if we started being extra careful."

"Hmm, yea but it's just forest season; I don't think anything super bad will happen."

"you say that like it's normal for an angry forest to chase after people..."

Frisk is somewhat confused and asks "Isn't it, though?"

Sans shrugs. Perhaps this was the new normal.

Alphys yells out in joy when her test succeeds, and non-magical power begins being transmitted to the output device they have. When she is done, the group decides to visit Snowdin and Alphys rememebrs to finally automate the Ice dispenser; since Ice Wolf is on the surface. As they pass through the Underground, the group can tell that all the monsters are anxiously waiting for the day they can finally leave. The modifications are simple... stupidly simple. All Alphys has to do is extend the conveyor belt and speed it up a little.

With that problem solved, the group spends some time with the monsters in the Underground; hoping to alleviate some of their built up tension. Mettaton has been doing a fabulous job at keeping the monsters entertained, but nothing can stop them from thinking about the surface.

The group leaves the Underground, remembering that they should be working on making the village a place where humans and monsters will be safe and comfortable. When the group reaches the exit Sans and Frisk notice movement on the other mountain.

Keeping an even tone and looking at the couple, Frisk says "Hey, Alphys, Undyne, you two go on ahead Sans and I will catch up."

Undyne is slightly annoyed "Aw c'mon punk! Don't tell me Sans is rubbing off on ya! We can look at this view when everything is safer.

"There is just some stuff I want to talk to Sans about, and I don't want to worry you if it's nothing."

Undyne starts of amused "Well if you 're planning to prank..." But then takes on a fearful tone, "h-hey... Why are all the trees moving way over there?"

Frisk continues their best to remain calm, "that's what we need to talk about. Don't worry, I'll tell you later OK? I just need to run something by Sans."

Undyne reluctantly replies, "a-alright punk... we'll go on ahead, but don't take too long."

Alphys has a hard time taking her eyes off the scene, having looked after Undyne mentioned it. Undyne pickers her up and heads off.

As soon as the two are out of earshot, Frisk speaks in as clear of a voice as possible; Sans can see the fear on their face.

"Uh... Sans... that has never happened before."

"that's not good."

"Do... do you also see.."

"that giant bald path coming from the mountain, headed right for town?"

"Yea... it's like something really big is chasing them... and it's really fast."

"looks like it will reach the village by nightfall... you know what, i'm gonna tell you a secret. it'll help in case you need to talk to a past me."

Curious, Frisk asks "another secret codeword?"

"yea, kinda. more like a super secret passphrase. c'mere, i'll whisper it."

Frisk moves closer and Sans tells them something. *whisper whimsper whisper*

Frisk gives a visible grin "Really?... OK!"

Seeing the Smile on Frisk's face actually makes Sans forget about all the bad things going on... but only for a moment. "heh, remember, keep that between you and me. that will let me know something really bad happened, but i can trust you. don't forget to use my secret secret triple-secret codeword first."

Frisk's smile fades, and the two begin walking back to the village. Frisk decides to take a picture of the scene with their phone camera. Along the way, Frisk comes up with an idea.

In a serious tone, Frisk suggests "Hey Sans... do you think everyone in the village would fit into the underground?"

"i don't see why not, but it would be a little cramped."

"Better than going to an early grave though, right?"

Sans responds in a mock offended tone "hey now, leave my sleeping habits out of this." And gives Frisk a wink.

Frisk gives a subtle grin. The two continue on in uneasy silence, walking faster than they initially realize. Sans considers using a shortcut, but he is still pretty drained and doesn't want to leave the other two behind. They eventually catch up with Alphys and Undyne, and the whole group begins to pick up their pace. Undyne complains out loud.

"I swear, if those stupid tree things get anywhere near here, I'm gonna make 'em wish they never existed!!"

Sans casually inserts "heh, well you have competition. looks like they're running from something."

"Wait, so... something even worse is headed over here?"

"yep."

Undyne doesn't respond... she puts on her fake brave smile that actually makes her look kinda worried.

Frisk speaks up. "We're thinking that we should try to evacuate everyone as fast as possible into the Underground."

Alphys responds "t-that could work... but we would need to get everyone in the Underground ready first... and the space problem... I-I will go back and do that!"

Undyne looks to Alphys and says "I'll go with, I'm just glad we thought about it now instead of waiting till we were at the town."

Sans replies "sorry, i must've forgotten that. me and the kiddo will head to the village and warn everyone."

 

The group splits up, once again, as Alphys and Undyne hurry back to the Underground. Fortunately they are not very far away. Sans and Frisk continue in silence, but Sans decides it would take too long and feels ready for another short cut. Sans waves for Frisk to follow and heads towards the river that leads to Mt.Ebott. After a brief transition, the two are turning around the corner of the gate. Frisk speaks up calmly.

"We should go to the town hall first, don't want to cause unnecessary panic."

"sounds like a plan, let's go."

They pass through the town, hear some commotion in the training grounds (Sans notices a Blaster go off, but ignores it; Papyrus is probably showing off), and make their way inside the town hall. Frisk rings a small hanging bell at the front of the desk several times, and shortly after someone runs out hurriedly. It's Stacy.

"What's the problem Frisk?"

Feeling a little worried now that they think about the thing coming towards the town, Frisk asks "has Bernard come back yet? There is something headed our way and all the Wälder beasts look like they are running from it."

Feeling alarmed, Stacy asks "What? How do you know that?"

Frisk shows Stacy the picture they took, and says "We saw them all running in random directions and a huge bald spot on Mt.Ebott II, looks like it's headed this way."

Frisk's CELL reads: 1:15 P.M. April 5th, 2045

Stacy doesn't respond immediately... when she does, she's sad. "We just got a scout back, he seemed delirious... but you just confirmed his reports. I'm sorry Frisk... but Bernard..."

Stacy doesn't continue her sentence but tears begin to well up in her eyes. Frisk is visibly upset, also starting to get teary eyed, which makes Stacy even more upset, which makes Sans a bit uncomfortable... he speaks up in a worried tone.

"we think it'd be best if everyone went into the Underground, till it passes."

Managing to calm herself, Stacy asks. "Did you two manage to see what's chasing the Wälder beasts?"

"no, but it's pretty big and fast. looks like it might reach here sometime after dinner."

In disbelief, Stacy responds "all the way from the other mountain?! Oh goodness, that is very bad... Are you absolutely sure?"

"yep, should get everything we can and head to the Underground."

Stacy begins hurriedly moving papers around, looking for something while saying "I'll let the elders know immediately, in the mean time please take this list" she hands Sans a rough piece of paper. "This is a list of everything we absolutely need to survive."

"alrighty, we'll get started. have anything that'll get the guard to help?"

Stacy had been leaving, but stops and says "OH! You're right, sorry..."  She shuffles through the papers, writes a few things down on a small one, and hands it Sans. "Give this to Deborah, she's the next in command since Bernard is gone." Stacy rushes to the back.

"thanks, c'mon kiddo, i don't want you leaving my sights alright?"

Frisk weakly nods and follows Sans.

They head to the barracks and track down Deborah, then hand her the paper. The looks it over... and her face goes pale.

"Shi-... itake mushrooms! This is not good... So, I'm guessing they put you in charge?"

"for now, i guess. here's the list of supplies, we're gonna evacuate everyone to Mt.Ebott and into the Underground."

"I know a lot of people who won't be happy with that..."

"anyone who doesn't go will have to deal with the thing that's coming, i don't think they'll survive."

"Did you manage to get a look at it?"

"no, but there's a large path across the mountain. it's headed this way."

Frisk hold up their phone and shows her the picture they took.

"F-udge that is a huge path! Also... this is really short notice and since this is just a preparatory order, so we won't be moving anyone yet... but if we get the word... I'll make sure everyone moves."

"we'd better get started."

"To be honest, if it wasn't for the fact that we are headed into the mountain... I don't think we'd be able to pull off a full evac. Even now it's iffy, but we don't seem to have a choice."

Deborah, Sans, and Frisk work with a few other guards to gather the needed supplies; taking it into the center of town. Several curious citizens ask what is going on, but Deborah merely replies "Evac drill."

It takes several hours, and most of the guards are now involved in the process, but eventually they manage to get everything on the list. The guards stand at the ready for their next orders, and Deborah goes to the town hall.

 

Inside the town hall is chaos, people are rushing to collect important documents and store them safely. Asgore comes out from a side room and spots Deborah.

In his usually cheerful voice, Asgore says "Howdy! You must be Deborah, I was told you would be arriving. We have reached a consensus, the humans can take refuge in the Underground. From what we were told, time is of the essence... with that being said, there is still resistance even in the village council; not to mention that anyone who refuses to leave cannot be forced... also, you can only take half of the emergency supplies... Sorry."

Deborah huffs. "Figures, damn old people too stuck in their old ways to trust new allies... Thank you for your aid, Asgore; I'll begin moving people into the Underground. Sans said that Alphys and Undyne are already there, prepping it for our arrival."

Asgore nods and says "That is very good. I still have some convincing to do, I will join you shortly."

Deborah starts with the Addams residence first, because they have been the most useful for the village's survival despite their... odd ways.

After three knocks at the large doors of the Addams' manor, and a few minutes, Marceline opens the door.

In her usual mysterious demeanour, Marceline says "Hello, Deborah, how may I help you?"

"We're evacuating everyone to Mt.Ebott, something really big is headed this way... it's chasing away all the aberrant forest creatures. We think it would be best if the Addams family evacuated as well."

Somewhat disturbed by the news, but maintaining her mysterious expression, Marceline replies "Oh my, that is truly troublesome... I will let Conrad know immediately, pardon me."

Marceline curtsies and Deborah gives a small bow before they both leave. Deborah heads back and begins informing the villagers. As expected, many people were resistant to the idea... but more accepted than she thought.

As she gets everyone prepared to evacuate, she has the guards and villagers begin to take half of the gathered supplies to the mountain by cart. The sounds of falling trees in the not-so-distant distance speeds up the process, and encourages some who were on the fence about leaving. Tension rises and people slowly begin to panic, causing accidents. The whole process takes longer than desired. With every minute the sound of falling and breaking trees gets louder, and some swear they can hear whispering and screaming in the wind.


Frisk and Sans are helping to keep everything in order, and helping move stuff onto carts. Frisk looks particularly uneasy. They help as much as they can, but they are so small and young that they end up tiring out and feeling like they are in the way. Sans tries to cheer them up with practical jokes, but it doesn't help.

Frisk's CELL reads: 6:32 P.M. April 5th, 2045

Frisk feels something through the void, as though hundreds of arms are reaching for their SOUL.  A wind blowing up from the south-west carries the whispers of tormented SOULs... and the sounds of falling trees... Wälder beasts begin running past the village, paying no attention to the fact that it exists.

* THE CREATURE DRAWS NEAR, THE STARS FEEL LIKE THEY ARE BEING DEVOURED.
* AS IT APPROACHES, THEY VANISH FASTER AND FASTER.

Sans looks over to Frisk and asks, "you ok bud? you look spooked."

Frisk, hardly able to maintain their calm demeanour, replies "Y-yes... I just... feel really weird. Like something is... reaching for my SOUL?..."

Concerned, Sans advises "huh... i don't feel that. let me know if it gets worse."

Frisk nods, and then remembers something else. "Well, my SAVE stars have been... disappearing too, like they are being eaten or something... At first I thought it was just because I didn't need them any more, but the one next to the manor is gone."

Even more concerned, Sans stops helping with loading the carts and takes Frisk somewhere they can talk. Sans asks "when did they start disappearing?"

Frisk thinks for a moment before replying. "Uh... the night of the magic lesson."

Sans' eye sockets go dark. "hey... buddy... if anything happens... Don't try to load, OK? Just reset. whatever this is... it sounds like it's after determination."

Frisk connects the dots and asks "you mean... this thing is after me?"

Sans replies sullenly, "yes, and it sounds like it's going faster than i thought..."

After a moment of silence, Sans asks "frisk. how did you feel when we were at the secret lab? any funny soul or save star feelings?"

"I... felt a subtle presence... I think it was just Chara, they started speaking to me that day too."

"hmm... how about after?"

"I could feel my connection with one of my SAVE stars vanish, it also felt like... something started to recognize me. Like it had been half asleep, but woke up suddenly."

Sans hesitates before asking his next question, "was it similar to how you felt when you saw cu-270?"

Frisk thinks for a moment... "No. More like... a ton of people I don't know. Why?"

Sans is equally hesitant, and his expression is grim. "cu-270... released a bunch of trapped souls... i used the spike in determination from you practising magic as an anchor, while the teleporter did its job... so when we left the core we also went back in time. The creature has probably been wandering aimlessly for years until the SOULs found it... and we returned with you being supercharged with determination from the procedure."

The sounds of trees being uprooted and snapping like twigs grows closer, they can almost feel the tremors.  The sounds of panic and screaming begin to be heard. The people who refused to leave are now regretting their life choices.

Frisk is no longer able to keep their stoic expression, they are visibly upset for the second time today. "So... this is a dead end?"

Sans hugs Frisk, and says "I'm sorry, Frisk..."

The sound of the monster-built barrier breaking is heard in the distance, and men begin yelling instructions as they try to fight back. The sound of incomprehensible gibberish grows louder.

Frisk tries to ignore it and hugs Sans back, asking, "do you think he meant to release them...? Did he know?"

Sans pauses for a moment to think, before responding. "no... there's no way he knew. i think he just really hated david, that guy never treated anyone nicely... even sanchez was better than him."

Sans holds Frisk's head to his chest, keeping them from seeing the colossal amorphous mass rushing towards them. It was like an entire human city's worth of people were merged and melted together, all yelling, screaming, whispering, clawing, kicking, grabbing... tearing, biting... devouring. Houses were crushed like snow underfoot, people became red puddles before being assimilated into its massive form, and the screams of agony seemingly had no single source...

A few words could be made out through all of the gibberish. "I need determination, give it to me! It is mine! we must HAVE IT! GIVE IT TO ME. THE PAIN! IT HURTS, IT HURTS!! DIE AND GIVE US WHAT IS OURS!!"

Holding on as tight as possible, Frisk and Sans brace for the inevitable... Sans is torn away first, and Frisk watches in horror as he dissolves into dust and they start to see the mass of flesh in front of them.

Arms grasp several parts of Frisk, and they closed their eyes. Hoping that not seeing anything would make it hurt less...

After immense pain, everything stops. Sound, feeling, sight. Nothing remains as Frisk floats in the VOID. In front of them is the gateway leading out of the Underground. Most of their monster friends are piles of dust, and their human friends and family are mangled corpses; all except their parents... Frisk feels the pull of the creature even now, they fight with everything they have until finally...

* FILE CORRUPT, RESET?
* ♥YES               NO

Chapter Text

When Frisk comes to, they feel the tickling sensation of flowers and grass on their face. They decide to continue laying there, letting the phantom pains subside and attempting to clear their mind...

After a few minutes, Frisk gets up and checks their Pockets:

Pockets:
'Not even a comical fly. Oh how the great have fallen.'

Looking around the small room, Frisk sees that everything is the same... The pillars, the hallway, and the archway with the Deltarune above it that leads to the next room...

Frisk takes another moment to calm down, then goes to the arch to leave the room; they hesitate for a moment upon remembering Flowey...

After a few moments to brace themselves, Frisk enters the room.

Sure enough, Flowey is there in the dark, empty, room and he does not look happy. He immediately begins yelling.

"I CAN'T BELIEVE YOU!!! WHY WOULD YOU RESET AFTER EVERYTHING WE'VE BEEN THROUGH!?!"

Frisk replies sadly, "...a giant blob of fused humans killed everyone..."

Flowey is not convinced, he responds harshly. "Do you really expect me to believe that?! Only monsters can become amalgamates!"

Frisk momentarily feels something stir within them, but it fades. They reply "If you had been down in the village, you would have seen it... I couldn't even LOAD, and it ate my SAVE stars."

Flowey's face starts to look confused, and a little concerned... but his thoughts are interrupted by the sound of footsteps. "You'd better fix this Frisk, or I'll be really angry! I have to go, M-... Toriel is coming. I'll be watching you."

Flowey burrows away from the area, and, sure enough, Toriel emerges from the other room. Frisk's eyes start to tear up and they run for her, giving her a hug. "Toriel!!"

Toriel is caught off guard. "Huh?... pardon me, but I do not seem to remember you... though, you do seem familiar... How do you know my name, little one?"

Frisk doesn't respond, they just keep their face buried in her dress. Trying not to cry.

"Well, if you are that upset, perhaps we can talk about it later. Come. Let me guide you through the catacombs."

Frisk lets go of Toriel and follows her into the next room. It's just as purple and old as before. The red crinkly leaves on the ground are swept into a neat pile. They see the base of a large set of staircases on the sides of a small clearing. When Toriel goes up the stairs on the right, Frisk immediately notices that their SAVE star in the clearing has a weird other-worldly purple glow. It also seems like something is trying to escape from... behind it? No matter how Frisk looks at the star, it seems to have writhing energy coming from behind.

Frisk steps closer and reaches out for the star... but the energy around it lashes out at Frisk. They are unable to SAVE.

Though worried about not being able to SAVE, Frisk decides to move on. 'I'll have to talk to Sans about this, probably has something to do with that horrifying thing.'

Toriel guides Frisk, just as she did the first time. She completes the first puzzle of buttons quickly, then encourages Frisk to complete the second puzzle; she also comments on how she labelled the correct switches. Frisk flips the switches, and they continue to the next room. Frisk does not pay a lot of attention to what Toriel is saying.

After Toriel gives her speech, Frisk approaches the Dummy and gives it some encouragement; this time, it almost seems to smile a little. 'Huh... didn't do that before.'

Toriel is very pleased with Frisk. "That was wonderful! You are very good."

In the next room, Frisk offers their hand to Toriel as they enter and they guide her through the, rather easy, spike maze bridge; the froggit doesn't approach Frisk this time, it's too intimidated by Toriel.

Toriel responds, very proud "My, that was quite impressive little one. Perhaps you will be safer here than I thought."

 

When they enter the long hallway, Toriel explains what she is about to do and Frisk waits. They watch Toriel run and hide behind the pillar, then they go down the hallway. Once Frisk makes it to the end, Toriel emerges.

"Greetings, my child. Do not worry, I did not leave you. I was merely behind this pillar the whole time. Thank you for trusting me."

Frisk replies "I know, you're going on an errand and want to make sure I'll be OK alone. Maybe a cell phone would be a good idea. Also, I like butterscotch, cinnamon is OK."

Toriel is surprised once again. "My child... how do you know all of this? It is almost as though you have done all of this before..."

Frisk tries to keep their mind clear. Despite their efforts, their Face subtly changes to one of sadness. "I have done this all before... All the monsters were freed and everything was going so well... then something... ruined everything..."

Toriel is not sure what to make of the information just given to her, until she thinks of the prophecy. "My, that sounds terrible... What do you plan on doing to fix it?"

Frisk isn't sure how to answer that question... They hesitate for a moment before replying. "I'm not sure, but there has to be a way... I'm the one who's supposed to set everyone free..."

Slowly losing composure, Frisk starts to tear up again and looks down at the floor.

Toriel kneels down to give them a hug, and speaks in a sad but soothing voice. "Such a great burden, on such small and innocent shoulders... if there is anything I can do to help, please let me know."

Frisk hugs Toriel back, continuing to do their best to not cry...

After a moment, they wipe the tears from their eyes and step back. They reply "butterscotch-cinnamon pie would be nice..."

Toriel smiles softly and says, "well, if that will help then I am more than happy to make you some pie. Here, take this spare cell phone."

Frisk takes the cellphone.

Toriel pats their head and says, "stay safe. Call me if you need anything, my child. I assume... you already know the way though the RUINS?"

Frisk nods, Toriel sighs quietly and leaves to get the ingredients. Frisk proceeds through the RUINS alone.

In the next room, the crunchy red leaves are exactly where they were before...

* Frisk remembers when they first played in these leaves, it fills them with Determination.

 

The SAVE star in this room also looks weird... Frisk is concerned, but doesn't think they can do anything about it right now.

Frisk goes to the left into the small room with the monster candy. The vines on the far end of the room look healthy, and the small pools of water on the left and right sides of the room gently wave from an invisible wind. In the center of the room is a short pillar with a bowl full of candy. A ring of red leaves is around the pillar, Frisk playfully steps on them. Unlike last time, they take four pieces of monster candy... the bowl falls down as they try to take all four at once...

'Oh no, now I feel bad... I should have only taken one...'

Now feeling bad, but having something to heal with, Frisk continues through the RUINS... albeit faster and without being hurt. They dance through the bullet patterns sent at them, easily talk all the monsters down from wanting to fight, and eventually get to the room with the rocks and buttons... and spikes blocking the way forward.

Frisk recalls what the plaque in a previous rooms says. '"Three out of four rocks suggest you push them..." but that one gave me trouble... hmm...'

Frisk pushes the first to rocks into position and proceeds to the third.

When Frisk walks up to the third rock in the room, it says "WOAH there, pardner! Who said you could push me around HMM?" just like last time.

Frisk replies "Would you move over there and sit on that button for me, please?"

The rock replies. "So you're ASKIN' me to move over? Okay, just for you, pumpkin." Then slides onto the button. The spikes blocking the way retract.

Frisk walks up to the rock again and says "thank you, would you be able to stay there for me?"

The rock replies, "well, if you really need me to."

Remembering to thank the rock again, Frisk leaves the room. Clear communication really is key.

Another unsettling SAVE star reminds Frisk that Napstablook is in the next room...

The small little room still has a small mouse hole on the left wall, and the table that has an old piece of cheese on it looks just like it did the first time Frisk was in the RUINS...

* Knowing, without a doubt, that the mouse will get the cheese... fills Frisk with Determination.

 

Frisk enters the next room and approaches Napstablook, they are pretending to sleep on a pile of red crinkly leaves; just like last time.

"zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz....zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz"

Frisk, only slightly amused but more anxious, says "I know you're not sleeping, would you please move?"

Napstablook continues pretending to sleep.

"zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz (are they gone yet?...) zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz"

Frisk tries to walk through Napstablook, they are a ghost after all, but fails. Napstablook gets up, and they begin to fight.

Doing the same thing they did before, Frisk smiles patiently.

Seeing Frisk's cute smile cheers Napstablook up a bit. "heh....."

After dancing through some tear-like bullets, Frisk tells a little joke "what kind of key does a Ghost use to unlock his room? A Spoo-key"

Napstablook looks a bit better. "heh heh... i want to show you something."

Frisk nods and Napstablook makes his "dapper blook" hat.

Frisk gives two thumbs up, Napstablook is happy.

"i usually come to the RUINS because there's nobody around... but today i met somebody nice... oh.... i'm rambling again... i'll get out of your way."

Napstablook fades away and Frisk proceeds forward to the spider bake sale.

'An investment in spider made products, made of spiders, will save me from spider related issues later... and it's a worthy cause!'

Frisk enters the small room and sees the sign for the spider bake sale, and two spider webs. They walk up to the web on the far end of the small room and buy some spider cider. They tuck it in their pocket for later.

Frisk continues through the RUINS, making sure to fall down the hole to get the faded ribbon in the room with the six holes in it. 'I wonder why I didn't keep this last time, it's cute...'

They decide to also fall down the hole that Napstablook is in, just in case, but he is fine and vanishes again.

Frisk makes their way to HOME, it doesn't take long. They ignore the other path on the far end of the hall way, they don't need a toy knife; they have real ones at home. As Frisk approaches HOME, Toriel walks around the leaf-less tree and starts to call them. Before their phone rings, Frisk walks back around the corner and holds their phone. They pick it up before it gets the chance to ring.

Frisk is feeling mischievous, they whisper. "What does someone need if they don't know how to do something?"

Toriel is confused, "What?"

Frisk jumps out from the corner and says "A TuToriel!"

Toriel giggles at the joke. "Hehehe! That is very cute." Then takes on a more serious tone and asks, "...Are you hurt?"

Frisk shakes their head.

Toriel looks Frisk over and is happy with this. "Not a scratch... Impressive! Come small one, let us go inside."

Frisk follows Toriel into the cute little house... The SAVE star next to it is just as weird looking as the others.

* Seeing the small tidy house in the RUINS again fills Frisk with Determination.

 

Inside the familiar house, Frisk feels better already...

They see the stairway going down out of the RUINS immediately upon entering, to the left is a living room and Frisk can see a fireplace, a chair that looks like its a perfect fit for Toriel, and a table with three chairs. To the right is a hallway.

Toriel breathes in and says "Ah, smell that? The pie is almost ready. Come, I have a surprise for you... Well, perhaps it is not a surprise to you... Still!"

Frisk follows Toriel down hallway on the right, to Asriel's old room...

"Here, a room of your own, so you can relax. Even the strongest person needs to take some time for themselves."

Frisk looks up and gives a subtle smile, "thank you, Toriel."

Toriel rubs Frisk's head gently before heading into the kitchen to get the pie. "Make yourself at home."

Frisk does just that... Knowing that time moves differently here than outside of the barrier, Frisk takes their time and explores more. They look at the... mostly wilted plants, the bookcases, and play around on the rug. Frisk ignores the dulled fireplace tools, but they take a few books from the bookcase next to the fireplace to read them. When Toriel comes out of the kitchen, Frisk chats with her while eating a slice of butterscotch cinnamon pie. It's all so... familiar and calming.

After a while, Frisk is too tired to stay up and goes to Asriel's room to sleep. The toys that haven't been touched in ages are still at the foot of the bed, the Wardrobe to the left of the bed looks like it was recently dusted off, and the stand with shells on it is well kept... Frisk gets up into the bed, and drifts into dreamless sleep.

Frisk wakes up in the morning to the smell of a piece of pie. A plate is in the middle of the room. Instead of impatiently trying to get out of the underground, Frisk takes time to read some more and chat with Toriel. Frisk also decides it would be best to tell Toriel their name, since they know she will never ask. After Toriel finishes talking about how one can use snails in 72 different ways, she asks a question.

In a subtly concerned voice, Toriel asks "Frisk, you said you have done this all before and that all the monsters were set free... did you have to...?"

Frisk responds reassuringly, "I didn't have to kill anyone, and how the monsters were freed is... complicated. I would rather not talk about that."

Toriel replies understandingly. "Maybe some day we can talk about it, if that is alright?"

Frisk nods and the two sit together in silence for a few minutes, before Frisk has an idea.

Excitedly, Frisk asks "Hey hey hey! Can you show my how to use fire magic? For cooking and keeping warm in Snowdin?"

Toriel looks at Frisk inquisitively. "I thought humans could no longer use magic?"

To which Frisk responds by meditating for a moment before attempting to manifest a green bullet... Nothing seems to happen. They try for a little longer... it feels like grasping at floating straws.

Eventually, Frisk manifests a single Green bandaid bullet.

Toriel is surprised, but pleasantly so. She expected that a human would have learned something more... combat oriented first, not healing magic.

"Well, it looks like my information is out of date... how can you use magic?"

While proudly holding the band-aid bullet above their head, Frisk responds. "The underground is full of magic, until the barrier is broken the surface wont have magic."

Pondering this fact, Toriel responds. "Hmm, well... Who taught you how to use magic, if there is no magic on the surface?"

Frisk points at her and gives a subtle smile.

Toriel smiles, "I see, that makes sense. Well, if I was teaching you magic before then I will keep doing so... but maybe you should wait until you can make more healing bullets?"

Lowering their arm from their proud pose, Frisk responds "I can manifest more, I just haven't absorbed enough magic yet."

Toriel takes a few more moments to think before saying "well, I suppose there will be no harm if you are careful; we can practice at lunch time, alright?"

Frisk nods and allows their bullet to vanish. Toriel starts to read her book again, and Frisk roams around the house before deciding to check on their SAVE star...

It is still all weird... Frisk has an idea... it could be dangerous though, so they go inside to get Toriel.

"Could you watch over me while I try something in front of the house?"

Toriel looks up, smiles and nods, then puts her book away before going outside with Frisk. When outside, she asks "what are you going to try to do, my child?"

Frisk does their best to clear their mind before responding, "I... there is a bunch of magic in front of the house, and I want to try absorbing it..."

Curious, Toriel asks "Oh? How can you tell? I didn't think magic was visible?"

The response is slow, "it is a special kind of magic, only certain humans can see it."

Toriel ponders this for a moment, "Well, alright then. I don't have any knowledge on human magic, so I will have to defer to your... previous experience.

Frisk smiles and approaches the star...

Holding their hand out over the star, Frisk begins to feel their SOUL... just like Sans taught them. After a few moments, they see it... Bright red. Frisk looks to the edges of their SOUL, and sure enough there is an infinitesimally small line around it separating their SOUL from Chara's... Frisk is relieved to know that Chara is with them. The energy flowing through their body is sparse... but that is expected. Frisk beings to attempt to search outward for magic...

After about a minute, Toriel asks "Frisk, is it working?"

Frisk, quietly and carefully, says "not yet," and continues trying to reach out with their SOUL...

After what feels like an eternity, but was really just a minute, Frisk begins feeling something. It's very strong, and feels similar to Perseverance... somehow.

With Determination, Frisk continues reaching out to their SAVE star... After another minute Frisk is able to feel the star, and the energy keeping it hostage. It seems to just be normal magic... Frisk attempts to pull the magic away from the star...

Suddenly, everything goes black.

* A BURNING SENSATION FILLS FRISK'S MIND.

 

Frisk wakes up in Asriel's bed... It seems like they only passed out for a few minutes. Frisk leaves the room to check if Toriel is in the living room, but she isn't. Frisk checks the kitchen and sees her. She's getting a glass of water.

When Toriel turns around and sees Frisk, she puts her glass down and rushes over "Oh good, you are awake! I was worried sick... How do you feel, my child?"

Frisk pauses for a moment and looks within themselves... Everything seems OK, but it's hard to see with...? It takes a few moments, but Frisk realizes that their body is almost overflowing with magic... Their HP, however, seems to be lower than usual. They can see small cracks in their SOUL.

Looking up with a confused face, Frisk responds. "I feel fine, but... I seem to be hurt."

Toriel looks at Frisk with concern and sadness. "I could not heal all of the damage, it is possible that you overloaded on magic and your SOUL and body need time to heal..."

Now curious, Frisk asks "what happened when I passed out?"

Hesitant, Toriel replies "well... I do not remember much either. I remember a very bright flash, and then waking up on the ground... uh... next to you. I rushed you inside immediately and started healing you."

Frisk contemplates this information for a moment. "Perhaps... trying to siphon magic like that was a bad idea... can I look outside to see if it's still there?"

Sternly, Toriel says "No. You need to rest... I am glad you asked me to watch over you. Who knows what would have happened if I had not been there..."

Sad, but understanding, Frisk nods and says "OK, well... Can I look out the window? I just need to see if it's there, or if it all exploded."

Toriel winces as Frisk finishes the sentence. She hesitates to respond, but eventually does. "Alright, my child, I will let you look out the window... Here, allow me to help."

After moving to the window, Toriel picks Frisk up and holds them so they can see out of the window... but not enough for them to see the ground. "Is this good?"

Frisk nods and looks outside... The SAVE star is there, and it looks like the energy around it is gone. "Just like I thought, it's all gone... Only thing that remains is a bit of determination."

Frisk notices some red specks that appear out of place.

Toriel puts Frisk down and says "well, I think we have had enough... excitement for one day, do you not? I think it is best that you not go outside for a while."

Frisk nods, but begins planning on ways to sneak out... they decide it's a bad idea.

The two return to the living room, Toriel picks up a book, and Frisk decides to practise magic. Clearing their mind has been getting easier for Frisk, but it still takes them some time.

Frisk manifests a green bullet, and then another. They decide to try to move the bullets around, hoping to get them to spin around in a circle. At first nothing happens, but eventually Frisk manages to get them moving slowly. One of the bullets arcs too wide and leaves their hand; they are unable to control it any more. It floats towards Toriel at a slow pace, and when it slides closer, over her book, she notices it and lifts her head to see it... but that causes it to hit her snout and she has to hold in a sneeze.

Toriel holds in a giggle and says "I forgot how much healing magic tickles, that caught me off guard."

Frisk is a little embarrassed, if it hadn't been a green bullet it would have hurt Toriel... They need to learn how to control their magic better. Frisk decides to see how many green bullets they can summon...

Summoning the bullets is slow, it takes frisk about five seconds to summon each one, but eventually they have 12 bullets in their hand. After attempting to summon a 13th bullet, one of the older bullets starts to slip from Frisk's control and slowly glides away in a random direction... Frisk puts on a subtle, mischievous, grin and starts to try walking around the house with their bullets. It's a success. Using the momentum from walking, Frisk tosses the green bullets at Toriel.

Toriel looks up from her book as green bullets start pelting her, and blinks. Then one hits her snout and she fails to hold in a sneeze, unable to withstand the tickling sensation. The two begin giggling, and Toriel joins Frisk in tossing green bullets back and forth.

Eventually the two settle down and lunch time rolls around. Frisk is eager to try using fire magic, but waits patiently. They decide to go down the hallway and look in the mirror while waiting...

Purple, squared lines look like they have been seared into Frisk's skin around their eyes... 'Well, the eyes are windows to the SOUL... right?' The skin around the lines looks damaged, almost as though it was burned with some sort of acid... Frisk decides to stop looking in the mirror.

Soon after, Toriel calls Frisk into the kitchen. Frisk eagerly walks at a fast pace to the kitchen. It is a small kitchen, really only enough room for one person. There is a fridge on the left of the room, a counter next to it, a sink, and a stove that looks like it isn't used much.

Though still a little spooked by seeing the magic burned onto their face, Frisk manages a subtle smile and asks "what are we going to make?"

Toriel opens the fridge, it's full of snails. "I was thinking we could make snail sandwiches, but I am not sure you would enjoy that very much."

Frisk thinks for a moment... "Have you tried cooking them with garlic butter and thyme? Mom loves cooking snails when she can..."

While pulling ingredients form the cabinets, Toriel responds "I have, actually. I suppose it is decided then, unless you have any other ideas?"

Frisk shakes their head and Toriel begins preparing the snails, by purging them, killing them, and then finally removing them from their shells.

'The cycle of life, live long enough until you are eaten by something bigger...' Frisk shivers at the thought, remembering what happened before the RESET... 'Hopefully we're not small creatures at the mercy of larger ones, that may or may not eat us...'

Toriel waves Frisk over and says "In my experience, learning how to use fire magic is easier with an example to use as inspiration when you visualise it yourself. I am going to make a small fireball, and then I am going to hand it to you. Alright?"

Frisk nods and moves closer.

Toriel manifests a small fiery bullet, and holds it out for Frisk. "Put your hands under the fire, and try to reach out with your SOUL and feel it."

Remembering what happened with the SAVE star, Frisk is hesitant... but continues anyway. They put their hands under the fire, close their eyes, and feel for the magic power... It doesn't take long before Frisk can feel the bullet with their SOUL. It feels Brave, but also... excited, and active. Frisk asks "what do I do now?"

Gently, Toriel releases the small fireball from her control while saying "hold on to it with your SOUL."

Frisk does their best, but is worried about failing. Without their eyes open, Frisk is not aware that they are already holding the fireball.

They begin to feel uneasy. "Maybe this wasn't a good idea..."

Toriel smiles gently and responds, "why don't you open your eyes, my child?"

As Frisk opens their eyes, they are greeted with the sight of the small fireball floating in their hands. Frisk is happy and gives an almost visible smile.

"Now, watch me and do what I do."

Frisk nods and watches as Toriel takes their pose, then moves over to the wood burning stove and pushes an imaginary fire onto the logs. She moves out of the way and Frisk repeats it, but slower. The fire does not want to move as readily as the bandaids did. After a few moments, Frisk manages to light the stove.

Toriel is pleased "Very good, you did splendidly. Remember, magic reacts to our intentions and our emotions... I am not sure how it works for humans, but monsters have to be able to feel the same emotions the magic represents."

Frisk nods and the two begin cooking lunch.

 

Lunch goes smoothly and, shortly after, Frisk attempts to make their own fireball... but they only get a few sparks. Frisk is not feeling particularly Brave right now. Memories of what happened before the RESET still haunt them, and after a while Frisk begins feeling panicked... Tears well up in Frisk's eyes and Toriel consoles them. Eventually, Frisk ends up falling asleep in her lap.

When Frisk wakes up, they are greeted to a warm smile. They get up and start thinking...

After a few minutes of hesitation, Frisk says "I should probably go save monsters again... Will you come to Snowdin with me?"

Toriel tries her best to hide her sad expression, and replies "I think you should stay here for a little longer, get rest."

Shaking their head, Frisk responds. "The longer I'm here, the more things change, and the less likely I can save monsters..."

Continuing to try to hide her true feelings about the matter, Toriel says "I will have to defer to your experience, my child... I am sorry, but I can not leave. There are monsters here who need me. Please, feel free to call or visit; I will leave the door open."

Frisk nods and replies "make sure that annoying dog doesn't steal your phone, like last time."

Toriel grins and says "I will try my best... Would you like me to walk you to the door?"

After thinking for a moment, Frisk nods. "Just don't try to talk me out of leaving, it didn't work last time and it wont work this time."

Toriel is saddened again, "I will do my best to refrain, but I am sure you know how much I worry..."

Frisk offers their hand and Toriel puts her book away and takes it. They walk downstairs together and through the long hallway, eventually turning left and approaching the door leading out of the RUINS.

Before letting Frisk leave, Toriel asks "Frisk... how many times have been through the Underground?"

Frisk replies "this will be my second time. This time I will prepare for things in advance, make sure everyone can survive."

Toriel gives Frisk a sad smile, kneels down, and embraces them. "I am sure you will do wonderfully... Just... please be careful..."

Frisk returns the hug while saying "I will," and they wait there for a few moments, enjoying the fluffiness of the boss monster wrapping their arms around them...

When they both let go, Frisk asks "Toriel, could you make another little fireball for me to hold? Snowdin is cold... and I would like to keep practising."

She thinks for a moment, but then smiles sadly and holds a small fireball out for Frisk. "Be very careful, I will not be around to... help."

Frisk nods, holds their hands under the fireball, and repeats the process they just learned.

Toriel rubs Frisks head with a smile before opening the door and waving goodbye to Frisk. Frisk waves back, and goes down the long hallway.

Flowey is waiting in the large empty room right before Snowdin Forest, just like last time.

He's surprised to see Frisk holding a fireball... "what... what do you plan on doing with that?"

Frisk replies calmly, "Keep warm."

Flowey isn't convinced. "Uh huh... Well, I heard what you said to Toriel. I saw you almost die too, you were pretty reckless. If Toriel hadn't been able to put you back together... I'd be really annoyed with you."

The statement takes Frisk by surprise, so they ask "what do you mean 'put me back together?'"

Flowey puts on his creepy face "just that, Frisk. I saw you all over the place, your arms and legs... Everything was scattered, small purple lines are all that connected the pieces. It was pretty gross. Toriel woke up with your blood all over her. I'm surprised she let you go... Actually, maybe she's scared of you now."

Frisk shakes their head, "no I don't think she is... she probably just needs time. Besides, she knows that... well I told her... I have to save monsters, again..."

With an unamused face, Flowey responds "ever the little hero huh? Well, how do you expect to get everything to work this time?"

Without having to put much thought into it, Frisk answers "I am going to get Sans' help."

Flowey rolls his eyes, "oh, him. Good luck with that Frisk... I'll be watching, from a distance... Don't get blown up again."

 

After Flowey burrows away, Frisk continues out into the Snowdin forest with the fireball in their hands; they hold it close to their body to take in as much of the warmth as possible.

Snowdin forest... feels colder than before, but maybe it's just because of the fireball.

The long, previously ominous, walk down the snowy path ends with Frisk standing at the small bridge with bars that are too spread apart to stop anyone... They turn around before Sans asks, and do their best to clear their mind of the horrible memories that are threatening to invade. The fire flickers briefly.

With his usual grin, Sans looks at the fireball and at Frisk's face and comments "you turned around before I said to... ...weird."

Frisk carefully adjusts their hold on the fireball so they can hold out their hand for Sans to shake. It takes a few moments, but eventually Frisk grabs Sans' hand. The whoopee cushion goes off, and Sans smirks.

Before Sans can say anything though, Frisk interrupts "The old whoopee cushion in the hand trick, right? You're Sans, Sans the skele-"

Sans interrupts with a wink while saying "hey, that's my line. c'mon kiddo, you gotta leave me somethin' to say."

Frisk frowns slightly and lets Sans' hand go, as their memories slowly creep back in, and whispers "...I'm the Legendary Fart Master and I call on the inter-timeline Broski, Grandmaster of dunking."

Sans' eye sockets go dark. "so... that's how it is, huh? ...what happened?"

Unable to keep their composure, Frisk takes on the face of someone who watched a dear friend die horribly in front of them. The fire begins to sputter as their memories flood back in... and eventually goes out. Frisk is almost crying as they practially leap forward and hug Sans as tight as they can...

Sans is taken by surprise, but the super secret passphrase has been spoken... He doesn't have the same feelings of brotherly love, but he hugs Frisk back none-the-less.

"that face you're making... it must've been pretty bad. c'mon, maybe seeing papyrus will cheer you up."

Frisk lets go, wipes the tears from their eyes and nods. Sans walks with Frisk slowly this time.

Curious, Sans asks "so, how far did we get this time?"

Doing their best to regain composure, Frisk responds "we got out of the Underground, but after you separated Chara's SOUL from mine, a giant... thing killed everyone. It was after me, my Determination."

"huh, so you have a hollow soul piggybacking on you? the king and queen's adopted kid no less, that's not good."

Frisk shrugs. "Well, it turned out that I was possessing them... so maybe it isn't that bad?"

Sans stops walking and contemplates the information for a while... "how long do we have?"

After pulling out their cell phone, Frisk answers. "Time in here moves differently, for us it has only been 52 years, but for you it has been about 2000. My parents will probably go crazy from me going missing, but we have a few weeks down here."

With a silly grin, Sans responds "we should work fast. I wouldn't want your parents to get bonely without you. anyhow, papyrus is on his way now. you should go through this gate and hide behind the conveniently shaped lamp."

Frisk and Sans continue down the path and Frisk hides behind the conveniently shaped lamp, Papyrus shows up right on time.

Casually, Sans asks "sup, bro?"

Not pleased with Sans, Papyrus says "YOU KNOW WHAT "SUP," BROTHER! IT'S BEEN EIGHT DAYS AND YOU STILL HAVEN'T... RECALIBRATED. YOUR. PUZZLES! YOU JUST HANG AROUND OUTSIDE YOUR STATION! WHAT ARE YOU EVEN DOING?!?"

Keeping a straight face, Sans says "staring at this lamp. it's really cool. do you wanna look?"

Papyrus begins stomping his foot while yelling "NO!! I DON'T HAVE TIME FOR THAT!! WHAT IF A HUMAN COMES THROUGH HERE!?! I WANT TO BE READY!!! I WILL BE THE ONE! I MUST BE THE ONE! I WILL CAPTURE A HUMAN!"

Taking on a daydreaming and proud pose, Papyrus continues "THEN, I, THE GREAT PAPYRUS... WILL GET ALL THE THINGS I UTTERLY DESERVE! RESPECT... RECOGNITION... I WILL FINALLY BE ABLE TO JOIN THE ROYAL GUARD! PEOPLE WILL ASK, TO, BE MY, "FRIEND?" I WILL BATHE IN A SHOWER OF KISSES EVERY MORNING."

"hmm... maybe this lamp will help you."

Stomping in place again, Papyrus yells "SANS!! YOU ARE NOT HELPING!! YOU LAZYBONES!! ALL YOU DO IS SIT AND BOONDOGGLE! YOU GET LAZIER AND LAZIER EVERY DAY!!!"

"hey, take it easy. i've gotten a ton of work done today. a skele-ton."

"SANS!!!"

"come on. you're smiling."

"I AM AND I HATE IT! SIGH... WHY DOES SOMEONE AS GREAT AS ME... HAVE TO DO SO MUCH JUST TO GET SOME RECOGNITION..."

"wow, sounds like you're really working yourself... down to the bone."

"UHG!!! I WILL ATTEND TO MY PUZZLES... AS FOR YOUR WORK? PUT A LITTLE MORE, "BACKBONE" INTO IT!!!! NYEHEHEHEHEHEHEHEHEHEHEHE!!!"

Papyrus runs off, but returns shortly with a final "HEH!" before leaving again.

"ok, you can come out now."

Frisk steps out from behind the lamp, and says "I can't believe how much I miss his antics..."

"heh, he's so cool... you oughta get going. we can talk more later. have fun, kiddo."

Frisk continues through Snowdin forest. The SAVE star at the three-way intersection looks OK... Frisk reaches out and...

* Seeing Papyrus again, and the convenience of that lamp, fills Frisk with Determination.
* FILE SAVED.
* FRISK FEELS REJUVENATED.

 

Frisk is relieved that they are able to SAVE again.

'Hmm... is my face all healed now?' Frisk takes a moment to look within themselves... Everything seems to be in order. They would ask Sans, but he is already gone.

Seeing Papyrus again, and spending some time fooling around, really helps Frisk relax from all their troubles. Frisk walks though Snowdin forest just like before, well... almost. They effortlessly dance through bullet patterns, easily talk all the monsters down from fighting, and the puzzles are a breeze too; before they know it, they have a piece of the snowman and are entering Snowdin proper. None of the ice along the way was clear enough for Frisk to use as a mirror... Frisk thinks about how last time felt like it took longer... then Frisk remembers that they forgot to ask Sans about their face. Oh well, there is always next time.

Snowdin looks just as cute as before. The first thing Frisk sees is the colourful banned saying "Welcome to Snowdin" next to a building, then Frisk sees the shop connected to an Inn, with a box and SAVE star in front of it.

* Seeing Snowdin town again fills Frisk with Determination.

Frisk doesn't feel the need to SAVE this time, they know Papyrus wont kill them. They continue on through Snowdin past the Doghouse shaped shortcut entrance, the intersection leading up to the Snowdin residents' houses, and past Sans and Papyrus' house/garage. Frisk continues in the direction of Waterfall to confront Papyrus. The familiar haze grows, and Papyrus emerges from it, stopping Frisk from going into Waterfall. Frisk is as flirty as always, so the "battle" goes smoothly. Even with their SOUL turned blue, Frisk never gets hit by any of Papyrus' bones. The Annoying dog, right on cue, steals one of Papyrus' bones and makes him use a "really awesome, totally normal," attack; which Frisk thinks is just his Special attack, minus one bone. Frisk almost ruins the mood with a bad joke, but decides to spare Papyrus the lazy humour.

After Papyrus' final speech, he leaves; using his Blue magic to make himself run through the air in a comical manner.

Frisk proceeds to Waterfall. 'I can come back for the... "date" later.'

When Frisk makes their way down the path, with the river on the left that carries ice cubes from Snowdin, they enter Waterfall proper. The purple stone and flowing water puts them at ease. They see Sans standing at one of his stations in the far corner of the room, with the weird fish monster that explains Echo flowers to the left of the entrance. Seeing Sans again makes Frisk happy. Monster kid is on the right side of the room, looking out over the edge and appreciating the view of the cavern. Frisk approaches their SAVE star.

* Seeing Sans at his station, and listening to the familiar sound of rushing water, fills Frisk with Determination.
* FILE SAVED
* FRISK FEELS REJUVENATED.

 

Frisk decides against listening to the Echo flower, or the guy who explains them, and instead walks directly up to Sans. Frisk is content.

"Hey there, have any 'Hot Dogs...?' ?"

"i only sell those in hotland, kiddo... oh hey, so my legally-required break is coming up. i'm going to grillby's. wanna come?"

Frisk nods "Yeah."

"well, if you insist... i'll pry myself away from my work..."

Sans walks around his station and says "over here. i know a shortcut."

Frisk gives a subtle, knowing, smile. 'Sans and his teleportation...' Frisk follows Sans in the wrong direction, and they find themselves in Grillby's. It's a cozy little bar, on the right are some booths, to the left are a few tables, and directly forward is the bar proper. To the right of the bar is a jukebox.

The fire elemental named "Grillby" tends the bar.

As the two walk into the bar, Sans says "hey, everyone."

The dog couple responds as Sans walks up to them "Hey, Sans. (Hi, Sans.)"

The big mouthed plant monster and the drunk bun respond as well as he approaches "Greetings, Sans. Hiya, Sansy~"

As the two get ready to sit at the bar, an unattractive fish monster asks "Hey Sans, weren't you just here for breakfast a few minutes ago?"

To which Sans replies nonchalantly "nah, i haven't had breakfast in at least half an hour." Then he winks as he continues "you must be thinking of brunch."

Everyone in the room starts laughing before Sans says "here, get comfy."

The two sit on the bar stools and, as expected, a whoopee cushion goes off.

"whoops, watch where you sit down. sometimes weirdos put whoopee cushions on the seats. anyway, let's order. whaddya want...?"

Frisk thinks for a moment... 'I got fries last time... but I didn't eat them.'

After making up their mind, Frisk says. "I'll get a burger."

"hey, that sounds pretty good. grillby, we'll have a double order of burg."

Grillby leaves to the back for a moment, and Sans pretends to comb his non-existent hair.

"so, what do you think... of my brother?"

Frisk replies genuinely, with a small smile, "Cool."

"of course he's cool. you'd be cool too if you wore that outfit everyday. he'd only take that thing off if he absolutely had to. oh well. at least he washes it. and by that i mean he wears it in the shower."

Frisk suppresses a chuckle as Grillby walks out with the burgers.

"here comes the grub. want some ketchup?"

As Sans holds the ketchup out for Frisk, they remember very clearly what happened the last time they agreed to ketchup... They decide to do something... different...

With a mischievous smile, Frisk says "Yes" but instead of trying to put ketchup on their food, they take the bottle and pop the cap off before drinking some of it and handing it to Sans.

Sans responds "man. you really like ketchup, don't you? you're pretty weird." Then finishes it off.

After scratching at his pants, as though he were itchy, Sans says "anyway, cool or not, you have to agree papyrus tries real hard. like how he keeps trying to be part of the royal guard."

Frisk interrupts Sans with a subtly bored expression, then says "yea, I know. He went to Undyne's house and begged her to let him join. Sans, we need to talk... maybe we should go somewhere more private?"

The mood becomes serious. Sans nods, but instead of leaving he stops time. The rest of the room grows dark as light ceases to move outside the small bubble surrounding them.

"so... how 'bout you fill me in."

Frisk gives a nod and talks in a serious tone. "A little while after the barrier broke, we learned that time moves differently in the Underground. We were going to get the Legendary Artifact to see if we could figure out why, because it's the reason the barrier is up in the first place, but we never got around to it. I gave Alphys a "Last Dream" for a project to get power from the CORE to the village, and she advised that I learn magic from Toriel. I also asked you for magic lessons, and you started helping teach me magic in secret. You used our first lesson together as an anchor while we teleported to the secret lab, I'm not sure why you needed an anchor. After you removed Chara's SOUL from mine, a boy you call 'CU-270' killed the Lich, but I was asleep for some reason when that happened. Before we all died, you said a bunch of SOULs went back to their bodies -which are in the giant human amalgamate thing-, and that, combined with me being super charged with determination, caused the thing to head to the village..."

Frisk takes a moment to catch their breath and calm down...

Sans replies, "seems like we're in quite a pickle. can't let that hollow soul continue to piggyback on yours, but removing it will cause everyone to die... you know where the legendary artifact is?"

"Yea, it's in waterfall. Undyne put it behind a piano puzzle. Last time I tried to get it, an annoying dog took it."

"hmm, when we get it maybe we can find a way to use it a second time."

Frisk nods, then remembers something. "Hey Sans, I uh... Does my face have purple lines all over it still?"

"nope. your face looks fine."

Frisk is relieved.

A few moments pass and Sans remarks "i'd ask if you know who is messing with papyrus, but i don't like spoilers..."

The world returns to normal, Sans gets up and says "welp, that was a long break. i can't believe i let ya pull me away from work for that long. oh, by the way, i'm flat broke. can you foot the bill? it's just 10000G."

With a subtle, unamused, expression, Frisk replies "Yes."

Sans immediately retorts "just kidding. grillby, put it on my tab." then goes to walk out before stopping and saying "by the way... i was going to say something, but i forgot."

'Probably just covering his tracks, since no one knows that we actually talked...'

Frisk eats their hamburger... it isn't made with meat at all. They leave and head through waterfall. It's very peaceful, with occasional rivers and ponds that need bridge flowers to cross, and soothing dark purple rocks everywhere. The twinkling of the mineral stars in the ceiling is also very calming. Frisk eventually makes it to the docks and through the second part of Waterfall, they expertly dodge Undyne's attacks. Monster kid is as oblivious, as always, while Undyne chases Frisk through Waterfall.

Frisk makes it to the room where Sans has his prank telescope, they smirk and squint their eyes in a knowing fashion... The next area is a maze of forked rivers with bridges going across some of them. Some of the rivers turn into waterfalls, disappearing into a bottomless abyss. Frisk makes it to the small hallway with deep pools of water beside a solid path, where Onion-san is... Frisk never knows what to say to them... but this time around they were too deep in thought to pay much attention to what Onion-san was saying... After Onion-san finishes speaking to Frisk, they submerge down into the water on the side of the path. Frisk feels bad for not listening to Onion-san, but they continue forward.

Frisk is at their destination. To the left is the puzzle room with the piano, and directly forward is a long hallway.

The next area is rainy, probably caused by the heat from Hotland. Frisk goes down the long hallway, past a statue that is being rained on, and to the can that holds Umbrellas; they take one.

After walking back down the hallway, Frisk gives the statue the umbrella; mostly just because it feels like a nice thing to do... Frisk continues going, turns into the puzzle room, and sits at the piano to play the bittersweet melody. It resonates with something inside of them, their SOUL feels all warm... Frisk continues to play the whole melody, even after the puzzle has been solved.

Frisk takes a break when they are done to clear their thoughts, before wiping tears from their eyes. Frisk is feeling the weight of everything they need to do, and stress from the potential results of failure.

After regaining their composure, Frisk looks in the direction of the room that holds the Legendary Artifact... The secret door is open.

'How am I supposed to get it when that annoying dog is going to show up and take it?...'

Frisk decides to return to Snowdin. 'Maybe Sans can help.'

While walking back to Snowdin, however, Frisk remembers that Sans is usually not around. The next place they will see him is in hotland... Unless they manage to catch him while he plays the Trombone. Frisk continues going to Snowdin, maybe they can catch him before or after their "date" with Papyrus. Frisk makes it back to the docks and gets a ride across the wide river from "Ferry." When Frisk makes it to the river, that they needed to use Bridge seeds to cross, Frisk remembers to go to the small secluded spot around the corner, to get the "Abandoned Quiche" under the bench. Frisk decides to sit at the bench for a while... The peaceful area, combined with their own tiredness, lulls them to sleep.

 

* CHARA'S SOUL STIRS WHILE FRISK HAS NIGHTMARES.

Chapter Text

On one of his legally-required breaks, Sans decides to go to a secluded area in Waterfall to sit and think. When he arrives, however, he finds Frisk laying on the bench; they seem to be having a nightmare.

Sans wakes Frisk up gently. "no worries buddy. just a bad dream. you must've been bone-tired to fall asleep here."

Frisk replies, sleepily. "Oh, hay... I *yawn* opened up the secret room..." Frisk rubs their eyes before continuing. "but I can't get the Artifact without that annoying dog taking it... why does it plague my life...?"

Winking, Sans replies "maybe it's the way you're dressed?"

Unamused, Frisk responds with a scoff and says "if you have any ideas, I'm all ears."

Not pulling any punches, Sans replies "that's good, because i don't have any. i'm a skeleton... but i've got a few bones up my sleeves that might do the trick, so i'll get the artifact."

Feeling more awake now, Frisk says "alright, I was going to head over to your house. I guess I will anyhow, I have a 'date' with Papyrus."

Sans chuckles briefly and says "well, that sounds pretty humerus. go easy on 'im kiddo."

Frisk nods and gets up to leave for Snowdin, but Sans speaks again. "after i get the artifact, how 'bout an impromptu magic lesson?"

Frisk nods excitedly with an almost visible smile.

With a Smirk, Sans says "alright then, i'll meet you at the resort."

Frisk nods again and leaves to go on their "date" with Papyrus. Sans leaves for the Artifact.

 

When Sans arrives at the Artifact room, he thinks for a moment. 'i wonder... why did no one look at the artifact before?'

After stepping into the room, Sans feels an excessive amount of magic. A small white dog appears in his pockets. 'so, you must be an anti-tampering thing or something. huh?'

Sans pulls out one of Papyrus' bone attacks from... somewhere, wiggles it around in the air, and tosses it. The dog doesn't leave his pocket. "you're dog-gone persistent, aren't cha?"

Keeping an eye-socket on his pocket, Sans leaves the room. The annoying dog vanishes from his pocket as he goes through the entry. 'hmmm...'

Sans freezes time, walks into the room, and tries to pick up the Artifact... but he's carrying too many dogs. Sans decides to get someone else to try taking the Artifact.

He leaves for the Lab in Hotland. 'Alphys should still be watching the kiddo on her console.'

The outside of the Lab is sterile white, with an orange tint coming from the magma below and the orange, iron laced, rocks. Above the automatic sliding door is a large sign in red letters that read "LAB."

As he enters the Lab and walks through the hallway, past the downwards escalator from the second story, he sees the security console watching Frisk on the left side of the room; they just started to leave Waterfall.

Continuing forward, Alphys' cluttered desk is a foot away from the console, there is a fridge next to the desk, with a bag of Dog food next to it, a tented glass sliding door a few yards away from the dog food, and the Escalator leading up to the second story a few feet away from the door. Alphys is about to enter the glass door.

Sans stops her by speaking. "hey alphys, can i ask for a favor?"

Startled, Alphys quickly hides in the elevator for a moment before she realizes who is there. "O-oh, hi Sans... I... uh.. I didn't see you there. Y-you want to a-ask me for a favour...?"

Bringing no attention to her nervousness, Sans asks "yea, i was wondering if you could help me get something. the legendary artifact undyne put in that one room. the kiddo can't get it because of the annoying dog."

Still feeling a bit nervous, Alphys replies. "Oh... t-that. I... uh... yea... yes, I c-can help with that. What do you n-need me to do?"

His grin widens a bit, "i just need you to try taking it."

Though a little worried by his grin, Alphys says "A-alright, let me finish... s-something and I'll be right over."

While Sans leaves, he replies "alright, i'll be at the artifact room."

 

Alphys walks to the artifact room after feeding the amalgamates. She's not sure why Sans wants her to help get that useless orb, but she also doesn't know why Sans does anything...

The way there is quiet and long... she would have asked Riverperson for a ride, but she needed some time to think. 'I hope this isn't some stupid prank...'

Since she was caught up in her thoughts, Alphys ends up passing the artifact room before realizing it. When she goes back, Sans is standing right outside the open hidden door.

"Alright Sans, I'm here... S-so you just need me to go into the room and try to take the Artifact?"

"yep."

Alphys gulps, last time she did a "favour" for Sans it ended with her screaming when she thought she saw Papyrus' disembodied head on the ground... but really Sans just buried him in the snow after he passed out. Papyrus really needs to try to get more sleep.

When Alphys walks into the room, she immediately feels the increase in magic and her pocket feels heavier. When she goes to check, a small white dog sticks its head out. Then the world goes black for a moment. Alphys looks up to see Sans holding the Artifact and the Annoying Dog vanishing into it. Alphys blinks in confusion.

Sans nonchalantly replies, while holding the orb out for Alphys, "here, look at it and see if you find anything. this artifact is why we're stuck down here. the dog was to keep us from lookin' at it, i guess.  must've been charging or something this whole time."

Even more confused, Alphys asks "w-wait, how is the annoying dog from the Artifact? Isn't it from the dog clan?"

Sans winks and says "there's more than one annoying little white dog."

Slightly embarrassed, Alphys takes the Artifact; it's lighter than she expects. "S-so... what am I looking for?"

Sans shrugs. "anything magical i guess. the kiddo says it made the barrier."

Alphys thinks for a moment, then takes the Artifact. "A-alright, I'll look at it..."

A few awkward moments pass, and Alphys says "I... uh... I should probably go do that now... I'll text you the results."

Sans replies "k."

When Alphys turns around and leaves, Sans goes to his bedroom; just in time to mess with Papyrus by playing on his trombone.

Alphys takes the Artifact to her Lab in Hotland, this time she asks Riverperson for a ride. "Tra la la, what happens when Deja-vu is more than a feeling? Nothing, it already didn't happen... Or did it?"

'Cryptic and creepy as always...'

They arrive at Hotland and Alphys steps off the boat. She goes into the Lab and to the "bathroom" down into the True lab. It doesn't take her long to navigate to the appropriate room, but finding the right equipment is a different story. The True lab is somewhat dark, mostly out of necessity due to some light sensitive experiments... The grey tiled floors are spotless as always, and the occasional monitor, on the light grey walls, comes to life briefly as she passes them.

Turning down several corners, Alphys eventually finds the hidden room she's looking for and begins working.

Alphys thinks out loud as she's looking for the appropriate tool to examine the Artifact...

"D-do I need... no... no maybe I c-could... Hmmm... OH! Oh I know!  I c-can... Yes, I can use this! ...no that's t-too small... I'll have to make a custom microscope..."

Sighing, Alphys leaves the Legendary Artifact in a sealed section of the True lab; then turns on an anti-magic field around it, just in case.

She meanders to the Riverperson and asks for a ride to Waterfall.

See needs parts to make a larger microscope... 'Maybe, instead, I'll try to make a series of magnifying lenses that can be moved around in front of each other... that would be more flexible...'

While rummaging through the garbage, Alphys remembers something... 'Oh my god I'm so stupid... I already have a multi-lens magnifying set...'

Alphys stays and looks for useful junk, because she's too embarrassed to leave without getting something. Eventually, she stumbles on a particularly well kept piece of junk.

She returns to the Lab in Hotland and goes down into the True Lab through the glass door leading to the "bathroom," then finds her magnifying lens set in another room. It was being used to examine the flowers...

 

Instead of trying to change the outcome, because there is really only one way the "date" will go, Frisk plays along.

It goes as platonically and funnily as before. Papyrus gives them his phone number after the "date" ends, because Frisk's phone doesn't have Caller ID.

After the "date" Frisk heads back through waterfall to go to the Hotland resort. Frisk has to walk all the way back, since they haven't meet Riverperson yet... at least, not since the RESET.

Occasionally, Frisk gives Papyrus a call... something to keep them occupied and entertained.

When Frisk gets back to the docks, they notice a grey monster. It looks similar to Monster kid... Frisk investigates.

Cautiously, Frisk says "Hello?"

Excitedly, the grey monster replies "Yo! You're a ??? too, right?"

Frisk is somewhat confused, "Uh... maybe?"

Frisk gets a sinking feeling in their stomach, like the monster isn't supposed to exist and their mind is having a hard time coping with the paradox.

A few moments pass and the monster asks "Have you ever thought about a world where everything is exactly the same... Except you don't exist?"

Feeling a little disturbed, but not showing it, Frisk replies, "Not really."

The monster continues. "Everything functions perfectly without you..."

Frisk responds thoughtfully. "Huh... that's really sad."

In a neutral voice, the monster replies. "Ha, ha... The thought terrifies me..."

Frisk replies in a reassuring tone, "I don't think everything would function perfectly without you... If you're supposed to exist, then you being gone messes everything up..."

Seeming to feel a little better, the monster replies "Ha, ha... You know, that does make me feel a little better about this. Thank you."

Giving a slightly visible smile, Frisk says "No problem, I'm here to save everyone. That includes you."

Looking somewhat downcast now, the monster replies "please forget about me" and vanishes.

Frisk doesn't want to forget about them though. If they're supposed to exist, but are in some half-existence, then that means they need to be saved so that everything can be made right...

'...how am I supposed to save them...?'

After thinking for a few moments, Frisk continues through Waterfall, grabs another umbrella, and walks with Monster kid through the long rainy path that overlooks the castle. Eventually, the two make it to the ledge that leads to the rickety wooden walkways above the dump. Frisk puts the umbrella away, and monster kid gives them a boost over the ledge. When Frisk makes their way into the next area, Undyne appears below them; they avoid Undyne's spears as easily as ever.

After making it all the way to the end of the maze-like walkway, Frisk braces themselves for the inevitable fall... They turn around and begin to leave, but, just like the first time, Undyne backs them onto an unstable part and breaks it with a spear; sending them hurtling downwards.

Frisk lands in the dump on a bed of golden flowers, and is knocked unconscious.

* CHARA'S SOUL STIRS, FRISK SEES ONE OF CHARA'S MEMORIES.
* A MEMORY OF A TIME LONG FORGOTTEN... OF A CHILD THAT FELL, AND A CHILD THAT FOUND THEM.

 

Frisk wakes up.

Laying on the bed of flowers, they think to themselves. 'Everything is falling into place.'

It seems that Sans' lazy jokes are rubbing off on Frisk... but instead of skeleton puns, it's puns about falling.

Frisk checks their pockets:
Pockets: MnstrCndyx4, Bandaid, SpidrCidr, SnowPiece, Ab Quiche.

'Hmm... my pockets are all full... I'll have to put some of this in a box so I can get the apron.

Frisk gets up, but thinks for another moment... 'Maybe I should ask Riverperson for a ride to Hotland?... No that seems too much like cheating... Besides, Monster kid is going to fall soon, I need to be there to catch them.'

Looking around, Frisk sees the familiar shapes of garbage, flowing and floating in river water from a higher part of the cavern. Frisk doesn't try to pick anything up.

When Frisk makes it to the platform, in front of the small waterfall leading to the abyss, they take a moment to SAVE... just in case.

* Seeing the waterfall flowing from the top of the cavern, and the endless cycle of garbage flowing into the bottomless abyss...
...fills Frisk with Determination.

* FILE SAVED
* FRISK FEELS REJUVENATED.

 

Frisk turns left and continues out of the dump, passing the piles of garbage, the bike, the old PC, the cooler with Astronaut food in it, and the dummy... They expect the dummy to react... but nothing happens?

They turn back and look at the dummy. 'It's just a Dummy, dummy.'

As Frisk begins to leave again, however, the Dummy stirs. "Wait! I KNOW YOU! You're the human that 'cheered up' my Cousin. You were so 'nice' and 'kind' but you caused him to leave his vessel!!"

Frisk stares at the Dummy with a blank look, and replies in a flat tone. "I think you are mistaking me for a different human... sounds like my twin."

The Dummy squints and considers this... "Hmmm... well, your face is pretty plain and boring. If you had talked to them, they probably would have been so BORED that they would have run away like any self respecting Spectre...! Fine... I'll let you go, but I'm watching you!"

Frisk snickers internally, 'Critical success on my bluff check.'

Avoiding the confrontation was nice. 'Finally, something didn't happen the same way as before.'

Continuing out of the flooded dump, Frisk enters a small clearing with a little pond in the middle, and five paths.

Looking around, Frisk recognizes that to the left is where the really long hallway is, that has the bird that carries people across a disproportionately small gap, and to the right is where they will find Riverperson, Gerson, and Temmie village... it's also the path that leads to Hotland.

The second path on the left is where Undyne lives, dwon the middle path is where Napstablook lives, and the second path on the right is the snail farm/snail race area.

Frisk takes a moment to appreciate their progress, then approaches their SAVE star...

* Frisk feels a calming tranquillity. They are filled with Determination.
* FILE SAVED
* FRISK FEELS REJUVENATED.

 

Napstablook appears for a moment, "oh.... hi..... i'm not interrupting you.... am i? ooooohhhhh..... i knew i should have waited longer..... i'm sorry... i'll just go home now.... uh... feel free to 'come with' if you want.... or don't.... no pressure... i understand if you are busy.... it's fine.... no worries... just thought i'd offer..."

The shy, and awkward, ghost floats up to the middle path and vanishes. Frisk decides to follow.

Upon entering Naptsblook's small house, he comments "oh... you really came... sorry, i... wasn't expecting that. it's not much, but make yourself at home."

There are three tracks laying on the ground to the right of the door, and a spider web in the corner. A few feet in front of the door, in the corner, is a fridge. Beside the fridge is a TV, and beside the TV -with about a foot between them- is a computer desk tucked in the last corner of the small house.

Frisk turns on "Spookwave" and goes to the fridge, knowing that afterwards they will lay on the ground with Napstablook and feel like garbage together.

Napstablook notices and comments "oh... are you hungry... i can get you something to eat..." before floating over.

After grabbing something from the fridge, Napstablook offers it to Frisk "this is a ghost sandwich... do you want to try it..."

Frisk thinks for a moment... 'I declined last time, I wonder... maybe I should try it this time?' Frisk nods and tries to take a bite... but they phase right through it.

Napstablook (and Frisk) realizes that corporeal creatures can't eat ghost food... "oh... nevermind..."

Frisk waits patiently as Napstablook eats the sandwich... at least, Frisk thinks that's what they're doing. Frisk decides to eat a piece of monster candy.

As soon as Napstablook is done eating, at least... that is what Frisk assumes, Napstablook says "after a great meal i like to lie on the ground and feel like garbage... it's a family tradition... do you want... to join me..."

Frisk nods.

"okay... follow my lead..."

Napstablook goes to the middle of his small house and lies down. Frisk follows.

"here we go... you'll lie down as long as you don't move. so... only move around when you want to get up, i guess."

They lay in silence. After about a minute, the music in the room slowly fades away... Frisk begins to feel the universe around them. They clear their mind... and relax... Their worries fade into the background noise of the cosmos... Reality blurs and Frisk feels... like a piece of garbage. Small and insignificant in the grand scheme of reality. Somewhere out in the infinite branches of reality, there is another Frisk, another Underground, and they are very much different... Frisk can feel their SOUL, it pulses in unison with another... one that doesn't belong to them... one that is waking up... slowly...

After an unknown amount of time, that is probably actually only three minutes, Frisk gets up.

Napstablook comments "well, that was nice... thank you..."

Frisk gives a subtle smile, and leaves. They make their way back to the intersection and go down the path to Gerson and Riverperson.

After stopping by to see Gerson for a moment, they press on. Frisk passes the last waterfall they will see in the area, the mushroom-lit maze room -where Timmie village is hidden-, the last room with echo flowers, and finally get to the bridge where Monster kid is going to fall.

Frisk goes across the bridge, but stops near the end as Monster kid starts to cautiously make their way out onto the bridge.

"Yo!"

Wary, and ready to catch them, Frisk responds "Hey."

"Yo, I know I'm not supposed to be here, but... I wanna ask you something."

"You wanna know if I'm a human?"

"Yo! How'd you know? That's freaky! ...But yea... haha... so?"

Frisk nods.

"Man! I knew it! ...well, I know it now, I mean... Undyne told me, um 'stay away from that human.' So, like, umm... I guess that makes us enemies or something. But I kinda stink at that, haha."

Frisk replies calmly, "that's OK, I do too. I've made friends with almost everyone so far..."

"Man, this totally sucks... I don't want to be the one who has to be mean!"

Frisk nods and says "well then... don't? We don't have to be mean to eachother."

Monster kid thinks about that for a moment, then replies. "I... I guess... but... Man, I'm just gonna go home... now... ...Don't tell Undyne, OK?"

Frisk nods, and Monster kid begins backing up slowly, then turns and runs... but he trips on one of his feet and falls over the edge. Frisk is already there by the time he falls, and starts lifting him up. Undyne arrives just in time to see Frisk lift monster kid up, and Monster kid faces her and speaks, timidly at first.

"Y... y... yo... dude... If... If y-you wanna hurt my friend... You're gonna have to get through me, first."

Undyne backs up slowly instead of lunging at Frisk, not wanting to risk Monster kid falling off the bridge, or accidentally hit them with a spear.

After Undyne leaves, Monster kid speaks to Frisk again.

"She's gone... Yo, you really saved my skin. Guess being enemies was just a nice thought, haha. We'll just have to be friends instead. ... man, I should REALLY go home... I bet my parents are worried sick about me!"

As Monster kid is leaving, they say "Later, dude!"

Frisk replies, "Watch your ankles, they seem to be out to get you."

Monster kid chuckles a little and leaves a little more carefully.

Frisk continues forward... and approaches the Cavern that leads into Hotland.

Undyne is standing above it...

* The howling wind and looming danger... fills Frisk with DETERMINATION!

 

Frisk doesn't bother saving, they have a feeling everything will be OK. They run forward before she can begin monologuing...

"H-HEY!!! DON'T YOU RUN AWAY! GET BACK HERE COWARD!!"

Feeling more excited than worried, Frisk chuckles a little and retorts "Sorry Undyne, but I need to go talk to Sans!"

Undyne Suplexes a boulder, out of frustration, then shouts "NGAAAAAAAHHHH!!! THAT LAZY GOOD FOR NOTHING!!"

Frisk smiles very noticeably and keeps running. Eventually Undyne catches up with them... 'Curse my small child legs...'

Undyne, triumphantly, says "there is no where to run!" Then changes Frisk's SOUL green.

"As long as you're GREEN you CAN'T ESCAPE! Unless you learn to-"

Excitedly, Frisk interrupts her and mimics her movements from before the RESET. "Face danger head-on, I get it! En garde!"

Undyne is feeling particularly upset now, it's like this little punk is mimicking her... it's actually kinda flattering, but she wont admit it.

Frisk focuses on their SOUL... the adrenaline, the DETERMINATION... the excitement of seeing Undyne alive and well again and finally confronting her... it's all working together... It seems like taking the time to be a piece of garbage with Napstablook is really paying off.

Frisk is able to easily clear their mind, and manages to conjure a small purple spear similar to Undyne's... Frisk feels like if it were as long as hers, they would not be able to control it... even now it warbles slightly as Frisk tries to remain focused.

Undyne is surprised by the turn of events. "H-hey!! Don't copy me punk! Spears are MY thing!!!"

Frisk just grins in response and focuses on blocking the oncoming bullets. Instead of completely stopping the bullets, however, Frisk notices that they are redirected to where their spear is pointing. They make sure to avoid directing them back at Undyne.

At the first chance Frisk gets, while their SOUL is back to red, they run.

"H-hey!!!"

This time, Undyne doesn't catch Frisk for a while. Instead, Frisk tosses their spear backwards haphazardly and Undyne has to slow to evade it. It still hits her, but does no damage; she pauses for a moment... confused. She finds herself a few feet further back than where she should be...

Continuing to pursue the child, she yells out. "Coward!!!"

In front of the sign to Hotland, Frisk gets a call from Papyrus... Undyne stops politely. She may be trying to kill Frisk, but she isn't rude...

"HEY! WHAT'S UP!? I WAS JUST THINKING... YOU, ME, AND UNDYNE SHOULD ALL HANG OUT SOMETIME! I THINK YOU WOULD MAKE GREAT PALS! LET'S MEET UP AT HER HOUSE LATER!" He hangs up before Frisk can reply.

Undyne catches Frisk after they finish their call.

"STOP RUNNING AWAY!!!"

Frisk immediately runs away, saying "I'll hang out with you later Undyne, I really need to talk to Sans!"

As they enter Hotland, Undyne stops as she sees Sans sleeping at his station.

Frisk yells "Hey Sans! See you at the resort!" as they run by.

When the two finally make it near the Hotland Lab, Undyne collapses on the bridge from the heat...

"Armour so hot... But I can't... Give up..."

Frisk takes a cup of cool water to her, and pours it on her face.

Undyne starts to feel a little better and gets up... She sees Frisk standing in front of her with a subtle smile and an empty cup...

She turns around and leaves, slightly humiliated.

 

Alphys is studying the Artifact as thoroughly as possible. She found segments of some arcane patterns that are still active, and is looking for more. Instead of thinking out loud as usual, Alphys simply thinks.

'It looks like it's powered by... Determination? Maybe... maybe I can isolate the DT energy traces and find where it was stored...'

'Maybe I should cut it in half...? No... no that could break something... This is really complex... I'm going to need a bunch of Perseverance magic to trace it all... I wonder if Sans is free?'

Alphys decides against calling Sans for help, she continues thinking while examining the Artifact. 'The last thing I need is Sans pulling some prank on me while working... Like when he flipped my screen upside down when I was trying to perfect SOUL inversion therapy... I thought I succeeded ... I would have tried to finish the NEO project if I hadn't figured it out... Who knows what the excess DT energy would have done to Mettaton...'

Sighing, Alphys leaves the elevator to the True lab and turns on the lights... She has a sudden flash of Deja Vu as she sees a human... the situation feels eerily familiar. Alphys feels very nervous.

Alphys freaks out. "Oh. My god. I didn't expect you to show up so soon! I haven't showered, I'm barely dressed, it's all messy, and..."

Frisk speaks up. "It's OK Alphys."

Alphys calms down slightly... "Ummm... Y-you know my name? H-h-hiya!"

Knowing what is going to happen next, Frisk asks "So, before Mettaton bursts out of the wall, can we cut to the chase? I know all of your secrets... I just want to go meet up with Sans to see if he found out anything from the Legendary Artifact."

A few awkward moments pass... "W-w-what...? Y-you... know a-all my... s-secrets?... Eheheh... heh... Uh... I... I don't h-have any... s-secrets... Eheheheh..."

Frisk hopes that by revealing their special power they can cut out all the unneeded puzzles. "Yes. You have amalgamates in the basement because of a failed Determination experiment. Flowey, aka Asriel, is alive because of you, but you don't know it yet. Undyne... well, actually I'll save that one for later."

Alphys is very shocked, she starts shaking and muttering and steps back...

In a reassuring voice, Frisk says "I have already done all this Alphys, I saved monsters... Something bad happened when we got to the surface, but everything will be OK... I just need to prepare for it before we leave again."

Alphys is a bit confused... she doesn't quite understand how this child could have done everything before... then she remembers Riverperson's cryptic message... and the prophecy. "S-so... this all... all ready... happened? H-how?"

Loud banging is heard and the room shakes, the lights go out and Mettaton bursts out of the wall... "OHHHH YES! WELCOME, BEAUTIES..." A spotlight over Mettaton turns on and he continues, " TO TODAY'S QUIZ SHOW!!!"

Frisk pinches their nose in a face of subtle frustration. The day in particular hasn't been bad, but something has put them in a bad mood... Maybe they're just a little hungry.

Frisk speaks up before Mettaton can continue. "Mettaton, I know that Alphys has put you up to this... but we have more important things to deal with right now."

Mettaton looks to Alphys, who looks back and shrugs with a nervous smile. "DARLING, DID YOU RUIN THE SURPRISE SO SOON? I WAS REALLY LOOKING FORWARD TO THE SURPRISE REVEAL!"

Nervously, Alphys responds "N-no Mettaton! I-I... T-they... They said already knew a-and that they already saved monsters before and t-they know all of m-my secrets!"

Not convinced, Mettaton looks to Frisk, "WELL, THERE IS ONLY ONE WAY TO SOLVE THIS! A QUIZ SHOW! LET'S CONTINUE! I'M SORRY FOR THE INTERRUPTION MY ... 12 VIEWERS! EVERYONE GIVE A BIG HAND FOR OUR WONDERFUL CONTESTANT!!"

Frisk is a little annoyed... they go along with it anyway. It's silly for them to be in such a rush since time moves slower outside the barrier.

The faux audience claps and colourful spotlights turn on to reveal Frisk.

"SO GORGEOUS, IT SOUNDS LIKE YOU HAVE ALREADY PLAYED BEFORE, BUT I WILL GO OVER THE RULES FOR YOU ANYWAY. JUST IN CASE WE HAVE ANY NEW VIEWERS! IT IS VERY SIMPLE REALLY, THERE IS ONLY ONE RULE. ANSWER CORRECTLY... OR YOU DIE!!!"

Frisk sighs.

 

The quiz show goes on about the same as it did the first time, except this time Frisk answers each question immediately as it's being asked... First Mettaton verifies that Frisk knows that they'll be asked more questions if they answer correctly, then he asks if they know the kings full name, followed by asking what robots are made of, then an overly complicated math question. Immediately after the math question, Mettaton asks Frisk to count flies in a jar, followed by a trick "who's this monster" question (the monster is Mettaton, with a Froggit on his chassis)... When Mettaton asks if Frisk will smooch a ghost, they are taken by surprise. They have forgotten about that question... There's only one available answer... "Heck Yeah"...

After the perpetually extending question, for how many letters are in Mettatonnnnn-*'s name, Mettaton asks what Mew Mew's favourite food is... and Alphys excitedly exclaims the answer before Frisk can.

"OH! OH! I KNOW THIS ONE!!! IT'S SNAIL ICE CREAM!!!!!!!! IN THE FOURTH CHAPTER EVERYONE GOES TO THE BEACHANDSHEBUYSICECREAMFORALLOFHERFRIENDS!!!! BUT IT'S SNAIL FLAVOURANDSHE'STHEONLYONEWHOWANTSIT!!!!!! IT'SONEOFMYFAVOURITEPARTSOFTHEGAMEBECAUSE IT'S ACTUALLY A VERY POWERFUL message about friendship and..."

Alphys becomes very aware of her fangirl outburst...

Mettaton responds "ALPHYS, ALPHYS, ALPHYS. YOU AREN'T HELPING OUR CONTESTANT ARE YOU?"

Alphys shakes her head nervously "N-no! T-they answered all the questions before I could help!"

Ignoring her pleas, Mettaton continues "OOOOOOH!!! YOU SHOULD HAVE TOLD ME. I'LL ASK A QUESTION... YOU'LL BE SURE TO KNOW THE ANSWER TO! WHO DOES DR. ALPHYS HAVE A CRUSH ON?"

Frisk ignores the available options and makes their own by manipulating the magic Mettaton put out, then says "Alphys had a huge crush on Asgore for a while, but now she has a crush on Undyne. Now that the quiz show is over, can we please skip the lasers and puzzles? I'm supposed to be meeting Sans at the resort..."

Mettaton is excited to hear that, "MY MYYY!! YOU DON'T MEAN TO SAY THE MTT RESORT IN HOTLAND, HOME OF YOURS TRULY, DO YOU GORGEOUS? WELL, WHY DIDN'T YOU JUST SAY SO!! I ALWAYS APPRECIATE FANS THAT PROMOTE MY BRAND, DARLING! DON'T YOU WORRY, I WILL MAKE SURE YOU HAVE FIRST CLASS SEATS (IF YOU RESERVE THEM)!"

Mettaton wraps up the show. "WELL WELL WELL, IF YOU REALLY DO ALREADY KNOW WHAT'S GOING TO HAPPEN, DARLING THEN THE SHOW HAS NO DRAMATIC TENSION! WE CAN'T GO ON LIKE THIS!!! BUT. BUT!!! THIS WAS JUST THE PILOT EPISODE!! NEXT UP, MORE DRAMA! MORE ROMANCE!!! MORE BLOODSHED!!! UNTIL NEXT TIME, DARLINGS!!!" The lights return to normal after Mettaton rockets off.

Frisk turns to Alphys. "We should talk, Alphys. I need to get you up to speed..."

Alphys is hesitant and feeling particularly exposed due to the secret sharing, "...Uh... W-what are... are we going t-to talk about? What d-do you need to g-get me up t-t-to speed on?... Heh..."

"We need to talk about what happened before I RESET."

"R-RESET?.... I-I... I thought humans... couldn't use m-magic any more?"

In a matter-of-fact tone, Frisk replies "I can always SAVE, LOAD, and RESET."

Alphys is starting to calm down, if the human child is telling the truth... maybe everything wont be as bad as she thinks... she is still sceptical though. "O-okay... Uh, let's... talk?"

 

Over the course of half an hour, Frisk explains the events from after the barrier breaking the first time. They leave out key details, like Alphys and Undyne being a couple, because some surprises are best experienced first hand.

After explaining the past events, Frisk reiterates "the Artifact is the reason the barrier is up. According to our history book, the Seven Sages overloaded it with magic, to make it stop working, because a really bad flaw made it shoot magic all over the place. The surface is a very hostile place to live... Humans are barely surviving. After just a few weeks of being on the Surface A collosal... thing... showed up, and killed everyone."

After listening to Frisk... Alphys is shocked. "So... we g-got out, just for everyone to d-d-die? Does that mean there's no p-point in leaving?"

Frisk shakes their head, "No, that's not what I mean. We just need to find a way to stop that giant creature... I think Sans is planning on using the Artifact to trap it until we can find a way to... kill it."

Alphys thinks for a moment, before replying "With the Artifact fixed, we c-could take the barrier down when we are ready... then put it b-back up when in danger... b-but how are we going to power it? Didn't it t-take seven human magi to put it up in the first place?"

Frisk nods "Yea, but we still have the six SOULs; plus me. I think it'll work."

Frustrated that a solution has been right under their noses the whole time, Alphys sighs... "Why d-didn't we try this s-sooner?... It's been here the whole time..."

While shrugging Frisk Says "maybe it started to activate as the magic leaked out, and some magic stuff activated to keep people from messing with it?"

Thinking back on the activated arcane patterns, Alphys has an idea. "S-so... you c-can use magic right?"

Frisk nods, then summons a green band-aid bullet. It is getting easier and easier for them to clear their mind. "I can use all types of magic."

"Maybe you c-can help, I need to use uh... purple magic to analyse the Artifact."

Shaking their head, Frisk says "I can only really use Green magic reliably right now... I still need to learn how to use the other magic types properly... I just made a purple spear instead of a cyan one, like Undyne's..."

Feeling slightly dissuaded, Alphys thinks for a moment... then has an idea. "Oh! I know, what if I ... uh... teach you how to use P-purple magic?... I c-can't use it, but I know how it works...?"

Frisk gives a little smile, "yea, we could try that... wait... actually... I am supposed to meet Sans at the resort for a magic lesson."

A little disappointed, but also secretly relieved, Alphys responds. "O-oh, well I'm sure that he'll be around by the t-time you get there..."

Frisk shrugs, "Yea, you're probably right... but I don't want to keep him waiting."

Smiling nervously, Alphys says, "Okay, t-that's fine... Just talk to me when you're ready!"

As Frisk turns to leave, Alphys stops them and hurries over. "Wait, wait! Let me give you my ph-phone number! Th-then... m-maybe... If you need help, I could..."

Frisk hands over their Cell Phone, and Alphys realizes how old it is... "Wh... where'd you get that phone?! It's ANCIENT! It doesn't even have texting. W-wait a second please!"

Alphys takes the cell phone and hurries away. The sounds of improvement are heard from upstairs, and Alphys returns after about a minute.

Holding the phone out for Frisk, she says "here, I upgraded it for you! It can do texting, items, it's got a key chain... I even signed you up for the Underground's No. 1 social network! Now we're officially friends! Ehehehe! Heheh... Heh..."

An awkward silence fills the room as Alphys looks nervously from side to side...

Frisk speaks up "You also put a laser gun, jet pack, and bomb defusing tool on it... because of the stuff you planned with Mettaton."

Alphys blushes out of sheer nervousness, she was caught red handed... "Y-yes... uh... do you... w-want me to... remove them? heh..."

Frisk replies dismissively. "No, it's fine. I have a feeling I'll need them. It seems there are some things I can't change, no matter how much I try..." Then happily says, "thanks Alphys, see you later!"

Alphys just waves goodbye with an awkward smile as Frisk leaves.

Frisk takes a moment to call Toriel after leaving the Lab...

"Hello, my child. Do you need something?"

Frisk responds cheerily "Just wanted to say hello."

"Oh! Well then... Hello!... Are you alright?"

Frisk wavers for a moment, but remains calm. "Yea, I just met Undyne and Alphys again."

Toriel sounds happy "Well that sounds wonderful, did it go well?"

Thinking back on recent events... Frisk can't say exactly... "It went well enough..."

"Hmm... Hopefully your next encounter with them will be better. If there is nothing else then I should probably go. Call again if you need anything!"

"Ok, bye!"

Frisk remembers that they forgot to ask Alphys to disable the traps ahead, they go back inside... but she isn't anywhere Frisk can find her. 'Alphys is probably in the True lab... I'll just send her a text...'

After taking a moment to change their name on the phone, and update their name and settings on the Undernet, Frisk sends Alphys a text.

< To: ALPHYS
Hey Alphys, did u disable teh puzzles
so I wont hav 2 do them agin?

 

It takes a few moments before Frisk realizes that Alphys doesn't know them by "LgnDairyFlrtMstr."

< To: ALPHYS
This is the Human, btw.

 

It takes a few minutes before Alphys replies...

From: ALPHYS >
Oh! Hey... sorry.
I tried to disable them, but they're not
responding??

< To: ALPHYS
It's K. I 'll just do them again...

 

Disappointed, Frisk walks out of the back of Lab and into Hotland.

The lasers and puzzles are all activated like before... but they seem different somehow, like the patterns have been changed.

Frisk makes a few mistakes, but they're otherwise OK.

The glowing magma in the depths of the cavern make Frisk uncomfortably warm, the smell of sulphur stings their nose, and the glare of bright lights assaults their eyes... Hotland seems more... hostile than before.

Though they don't have any problems with the monsters, they seem to attack more frequently... Frisk keeps their guard up. Mettaton probably decided to go off-script early.

All of the usual spots where Mettaton should appear are, instead, inhabited by other monsters. It makes the trip through the maze-like paths a little faster, but Frisk wonders... 'What does Mettaton have up his metal sleeves?'

Thanks to Frisk thinking ahead, and turning off the notifications from the Undernet, they don't have to worry about Alphys distracting them... which is nice.

Eventually making it to where Heats Flamesman is standing, and to Sans' station, Frisk takes a moment to ask Sans a question.

"Heya Sans, have any 'Hot dog...?'s?"

Sans replies, "i sure do kiddo. here you go, one 'hot dog...?' for ya. That'll be 30g"

Frisk hands over 30g and takes the "Hot Dog...?," then puts it into Dimensional Box A.

Tilting their head to the side slightly, Frisk asks, "so, I'll see you at the resort?"

"yep. oh, hey, be careful. looks like someone's up to something. they built a huge set near muffet's place. i also saw someone move some stuff around."

Thankful of the warning, Frisk smiles subtly while replying. "will do, thanks for the warning Sans."

Sans winks and says, "no prob, kiddo."

Frisk waves goodbye to Sans and continues through Hotland... They question why they didn't ask if Sans could just switch the meeting to here... but it's too late, Sans is gone.

When Frisk arrives to where the Apron is supposed to be... it isn't there. Instead, the Frying pan is. 'Ah... That must have been what Sans was talking about...'

Frisk picks up the Frying pan and backtracks to where it's supposed to be... The Apron is there. Frisk takes the Apron and equips it, then removes the Ribbon because it clashes with the Apron.

Frisk puts their stick into Box B and double checks their pockets and Dimensional Boxes:
Pockets: MnstrCndyx3, Bandaid, SpidrCidr, SnowPiece, Ribbon.
Box A: Ab Quiche, Hot Dog...?
Box B: Stick.

Equipped:
Frying Pan
Stained Apron

Gold: 537

 

Proceeding forward, Frisk encounters less monsters.

 

* Knowing that the mouse will someday hack the safe and get the cheese... Fills Frisk with Determination.

 

Frisk forgets to SAVE before continuing forward. By the time they remember, they are already in front of Muffet's lair.

Frisk carefully walks in... the spider webs are all still there, but... Muffet isn't there...

Instead, there's a couch, a table... and a Desk? The room also looks smaller than before...

When Frisk walks through the entrance... the lights in the room go out. A single spotlight turns on to show the desk and Mettaton sitting at it.

"WELCOME BEAUTIES AND GENTLE BEAUTIES TO... THE TALK SHOW "SPEAKING WITH MTT!!" TODAY WE HAVE TWO VERY SPECIAL GUESTS THAT ARE GOING TO BATTLE IT OUT AS THEY DISCUSS THE GOINGS ON!! ISN'T THAT WONDERFUL?! GIVE A BIG HAND FOR OUR FIRST GUEST... THE LOVELY LITTLE MUFFET!"

A faux audience applauses from somewhere as a second spot light activates to reveal Muffet, descending from the ceiling. When she lands she gives a small curtsy, then sits on the couch.

"Ahuhuhu~ Hello dearies!"

Frisk has a feeling that the Spider Cider wont help them anymore...

"NOW... WITHOUT FURTHER ADO, WE WOULD LIKE TO INTRODUCE OUR SECOND, EQUALLY SPECIAL GUEST.... THE HUMAN!!!"

Another round of applause from the faux audience, and a third spotlight to reveal Frisk. Frisk decides to play along... They curtsy, and sit on the couch next to Muffet.

The lights in the room turn back on.

"I SEE, THE STRONG SILENT TYPE ARE WE? WELL, THAT JUST WONT DO!! THIS IS A TALK SHOW! NOW LET US DISCUSS... ME! TELL ME, HUMAN, AS AN OUTSIDER TO THE UNDERGROUND, HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT MY FABULOUS SELF?"

Frisk thinks for a moment... then replies. "I think we could be good friends... If you were not trying to kill me."

The faux audience erupts into laughter.

"A WONDERFUL ANSWER INDEED! NOW MUFFET DEAR, HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT LITTLE OL' MTT?"

Muffet doesn't hesitate, "Well dearie, I think your attitude towards spiders is very good! At first I thought you would be a delicious little snack to put in the pastries, but metal doesn't mix well with dough and spiders. Ahuhuhu~"

Frisk nods, adding "Yea, Mettaton is crazy about anyone willing to be his fan. Really, really, great." Frisk also takes the opportunity to try putting Mettaton in a tight spot. "I heard he's VERY generous, too."

Feigning humility Mettaton retorts "OOOH STOP IT YOU TWO, YOU ARE MAKING MY CIRCUITS BLUSH! MUFFET DARLING, WHY DON'T YOU TELL OUR WONDERFUL AUDIENCE ABOUT YOURSELF?"

"Ahuhu~ I would be glad to! I'm a spider, and I'm trying to raise money to get the Spiders from the RUINS here... we've tried quite hard, but so far only one person has bought a pastry!"

Posing as dramatically as he can, in his boxy form, Mettaton exclaims. "OH MY, YOU POOR THING! NOT TO WORRY DARLING I MADE A PROMISE TO HELP AND I WILL! LET'S GET TO THE HUMAN HERE BEFORE WE START OUR NEXT SEGMENT 'THE BALANCE OF DEATH!' SO HUMAN, WHY DON'T YOU TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT YOURSELF?"

Frisk thinks for a moment before responding.

Frisk starts off speaking excitedly. "Well, Mettaton, I'm here to save monster kind! I ran off to explore and fell down here, and now I'm gonna save everyone."

Then switches to a sombre tone, "I already did once, but I had to RESET because something bad happened... I was hoping to get through Hotland the second time without much trouble, but you seem to have taken it as a challenge to surprise me."

Intrigued, Muffet asks, "Save monsters you say? Surely that includes spiders, yes?"

Frisk nods and pulls out the Spider Cider briefly, then puts on a thoughtful, nostalgia filled, face. "When I first came here, I only had enough money to get this one Spider Cider... but I have been saving money up till now, and I'd like to donate it to you Muffet!"

The faux audience goes wild with "Awww"s, clapping, and whistling while magic-works go off and Mettaton poses dramatically again. He interrupts Muffet before she can speak. "OH MY WHAT A GENEROUS OFFER!! SURELY YOU ARE THE SAVIOUR OF MONSTERS...! OR... ARE YOU? YOU SEE, I THINK THAT MAYBE... YOU'RE REALLY JUST A LITTLE TRICKSTER TRYING TO GET OUR HOPES UP... SO I HAVE DEVISED THE NEXT SEGMENT... TO TEST YOUR METTLE DARLING!"

The stage lights switch to multicoloured lights that dance around the room as Mettaton continues speaking.
"IT IS TIME NOW TO SWITCH OVER TO THE NEXT SEGMENT OF OUR SHOW, 'THE BALANCE OF DEATH!' WHERE OUR TWO LOVELY GUESTS, AND YOURS TRULY, WILL LITERALLY BALANCE ON THE EDGE... OF LIFE AND DEATH!"

The faux audience cheers as the room shifts. 'It wasn't Muffet's lair after all... It was just the entrance with a stage set put over it...'

Once the stage extends out over the chasm, it begins lowering several floors to put the lava into view... Then, the floor splits and Frisk is forced to stand on a rope...

Frisk is now standing over a pit of lava... on a tight rope. Frisk is a little nervous, but they manage to keep their balance.

"MY MY LOOK AT THIS MY... 8 VIEWERS! HERE WE HAVE THE BRAVE, SELF-PROCLAIMED HERO OF MONSTERS ON THIS PRECARIOUS LITTLE ROPE! DO YOU THINK THEY WILL SURVIVE THEIR FIGHT TO THE DEATH?! LET'S FIND OUT!!"

Frisk gulps... 'Maybe I can... stall for time? Or... make it boring?...'

Their thoughts are interrupted as Muffet appears on the other side, "Don't look so blue, my deary~"

Muffet pours purple tea on the rope, turning it purple. Frisk's SOUL turns purple in response, and two more tight ropes appear beside the first. Background music fit for a battle starts to play.

'Maybe this wont be as hard as I thought... Hmmm... Oh!! Maybe I can do what I did in my fight with Mettaton and get the ratings up super high... But this is supposed to be a death battle talk show...? Hmmm...'

Giggling, Muffet continues speaking "...I think purple looks much better on you! Ahuhuhuhu~"

Suddenly, Frisk feels... different. Their SOUL is resonating strongly with Muffet's magic... They feel... Perseverance... and spiders.

Frisk remembers the Perseverance magic from their SAVE star. They look within themselves and see that most of it is still there... They take advantage of their excess magic and try to use it to their benefit...

After a moment, the ropes suddenly split into an interconnected criss-crossing pattern. Frisk is taken by surprise, but at least they have more freedom of movement now... They also feel oddly drained.

Upon seeing the feat of magic, Mettaton dramatically poses and shouts "OOOOH MY!! HOW SHOCKING, HOW SURPRISING! TRULY A TWIST WE DIDN'T EXPECT! THE HUMAN CAN USE MAGIC! WELL WELL, THIS REALLY SPICES THINGS UP! WHAT DOES OUR DEAR LITTLE HUMAN HAVE IN STORE FOR US NEXT?!"

Shortly after Mettaton's exclamation, spiders and pastries begin flying through the area, while Mettaton occasionally pops in to throw a few bombs, and Frisk... talks and dodges.

 

Just like Mettaton said, the participants fight to the death while talking about the goings on.

Frisk talks about everything they've done in the Underground thus far, then asks, "what are your dreams, Muffet?"

Muffet replies "Ahuhuhu~ Curious are we, dearie? My only desire is to get the Spiders out of the RUINS safely... Mettaton promised to help if I helped with his show."

With a nod, Frisk dodges more bullets before asking, "Mettaton, is it true that you like Mew Mew Kissy Cutie 1 over Mew Mew Kissy Cutie 2?"

Mettaton hesitates for a moment before replying "HOW DEVIOUS! MY SECRET IS REVEALED! YES, I LIKE MMKC 1 OVER MMKC 2; BUT I HONESTLY THINK THEY ARE BOTH OVERRATED DARLING! YOU SHOULD WATCH ME INSTEAD!!"

The next wave of attacks is a little more difficult.

Mettaton doesn't appreciate Frisk talking about another show while on his.

Alphys tries calling Frisk, but they can't pick the phone up right now.

"WHAT'S THIS? A PHONE CALL DURING THE SHOW? TSK TSK DARLING! THAT MEANS YOU HAVE TO FACE A PENALTY ROUND!"

Mettaton starts to take a more active role in the fight, which includes talking.

Several rounds pass, and without access to the gun on their phone, which requires their SOUL to be yellow, Frisk can't avoid being hit every time.

Mettaton comments "LISTEN, DARLING. I'VE SEEN YOU FIGHT. YOU'RE WEAK. IF YOU CONTINUE FORWARD, ASGORE WILL TAKE YOUR SOUL. AND WITH YOUR SOUL, ASGORE WILL DESTROY HUMANITY."

After another round of almost impossible to dodge bullets, Mettaton continues talking.

"BUT IF I GET YOUR SOUL, I CAN STOP ASGORE'S PLAN! I CAN SAVE HUMANITY FROM DESTRUCTION! THEN, USING YOUR SOUL, I'LL CROSS THROUGH THE BARRIER... AND BECOME THE STAR I'VE ALWAYS DREAMED OF BEING!"

Frisk is getting tired... They don't think they can keep this up much longer. They're starting to make mistakes and they only have the snowman piece left, which they don't want to use... Frisk doesn't want to risk trying to use healing magic either, because it might take too long to be effective... 'Thank goodness this apron is enchanted with healing magic...'

The next onslaught of attacks isn't too hard to avoid... fortunately.

Mettaton continues talking. "HUNDREDS, THOUSANDS... NO! MILLIONS OF HUMANS WILL WATCH ME! -"

Frisk interrupts, "There are only a few thousand humans left, actually... And if you leave without me... they'll probably kill you."

Mettaton wiggles one of his fingers and retorts, "NOT SO FAST BABY, I KNOW ALL ABOUT YOUR SILVER TONGUE... YOU CAN'T FOOL ME!"

Then Frisk remembers about the switch on Mettaton's back... 'Maybe... I can flip that switch and have Mettaton join the fight for real? Tire him out and make the show stop... Why didn't I think of that sooner??'

After a barrage of croissants and lightning bolts, Frisk exclaims, "Wow! That magic mirror that I made, directly behind Mettaton, is still there? I thought it would surely have fallen by now!"

Frisk really didn't need to try hard to convince Mettaton to turn around... "OH??? A MIRROR??? RIGHT, I HAVE TO LOOK ABSOLUTELY PERFECT FOR OUR GRAND FINALE! IT'S TIME FOR A UNION MANDATED BREAK ANYHOW, DARLINGS! HMM... I DON'T-?"

After he turns around, Frisk quickly flips the switch on his back.

"DID YOU. JUST FLIP. MY SWITCH?"

Mettaton goes through his transformation process and the room suddenly gets blindingly bright.

Mettaton exclaims "OOOH YEEES~!" after his transformation is complete.

The room goes dark, the background music changes to something more dramatic, smoke machines turn on... and two spotlights lower to shine on where Mettaton is hidden behind the smoke.

"Ohhh my. If you flipped my switch, that can only mean one thing. You're desperate for the premiere of my new body. How rude... Lucky for you, I've been aching to show this off for a long time. So... as thanks, I'll give you a handsome reward. I'll make your last living moments..."

The room flashes for a moment, and Mettaton is fully revealed standing haphazardly on the tight ropes... Frisk worries about him falling... 'I didn't think this through very well...'

Mettaton continues speaking "ABSOLUTELY beautiful!"

And now... the ratings bar shows up... Frisk decides to stop talking, and Dance. Frisk replaces the Apron with the Ribbon.

As Frisk dances, the two monsters begin dancing along with them.

Frisk manages to avoid their attacks with greater ease, now that they are familiar with the new patterns.

With the dangers below them, Frisk is very careful... not only has it been a while since they SAVED, but they also don't want to find out how death by lava feels...

With every dramatic pose, every impromptu duet and trio dance, and with all of the violence, the ratings go up and up... until eventually they get to 12k.

Mettaton is impressed "OOH, LOOK A THESE RATINGS!!! THIS IS THE MOST VIEWERS I'VE EVER HAD!!! WE'VE REACHED THE VIEWER CALL-IN MILESTONE! ONE LUCKY VIEWER WILL HAVE THE CHANCE TO TALKE TO ME... BEFORE I LEAVE THE UNDERGROUND FOREVER!! LET'S SEE WHO CALLS IN FIRST!"

The phone in Mettaton's body rings "HI, YOU'RE ON TV! WHAT DO YOU HAVE TO SAY ON THIS, OUR LAST SHOW???"

The tense dramatic background music is replaced with a more sedated and sad one.

The caller says, ".....oh........ hi... mettaton... i really liked watching your show... my life is pretty boring..."

Mettaton starts feeling sad.

The caller continues. "but... seeing you on the screen... brought excitement to my life... vicariously. i can't tell, but... i guess this is the last episode...? i'll miss you... mettaton....."

That last statement fills Mettaton with guilt and sadness... the caller continues. "... oh.... i didn't mean to talk so long... oh.........."

Mettaton stops looking guilty, they look more frustrated with themselves "NO, WAIT! WAIT, BL... H... THEY ALREADY HUNG UP..." Briefly, the look of guilt flashes across Mettaton's face again before he continues. "I'LL TAKE ANOTHER CALLER!!!"

All the next calls were similar. Monsters say how much his show has moved them, and how much they will miss him...

With a bitter sweet smile, Mettaton says, "AH... I... I SEE... EVERYONE... THANK YOU SO MUCH..."

Taking on a happier face, he continues "DARLING. PERHAPS... IT MIGHT BE BETTER IF I STAY HERE FOR A WHILE. HUMANS ALREADY HAVE STARS AND IDOLS, BUT MONSTERS... THEY ONLY HAVE ME."

Mettaton pauses for a moment and continues, sad and guilty "IF I LEFT... THE UNDERGROUND WOULD LOSE ITS SPARK. I'D LEAVE AN ACHING VOID THAT CAN NEVER BE FILLED. SO... I THINK I'LL HAVE TO DELAY MY BIG DEBUT."

Frisk interrupts, "Don't worry Mettaton, when we free all the monsters again, you'll have your chance to be everyone's star! There are none on the surface... You don't have to stop being the monster's star to be a star for humans as well!"

Mettaton is becoming more and more convinced that Frisk really did save monsters already... He's been denying it... but he has felt that Frisk was familiar, like an old friend. Maybe... just maybe... Frisk was telling the truth...

Mettaton replies appreciatively "THANK YOU, HUMAN, FOR BELIEVING IN ME... EVEN WHEN I DIDN'T BELIEVE IN YOU. I MAY BE THE STAR, BUT YOU ARE REALLY OUTSHINING ME DARLING..."

Mettaton thinks for a moment... then says, with a devious smile, "IF WHAT YOU SAY IS TRUE, I'M GOING TO HAVE TO TRY HARDER... SO I CAN BE THE VERY BEST STAR I CAN BE, FOR HUMANS AND MONSTERS! I BELIEVE IN YOU NOW DARLING, SO MAKE US PROUD!"

The set returns to its original position and Frisk is helped off the tight ropes... soon after, Mettaton's batteries die. Frisk is glad they were able to stop the fight so soon.

Alphys rushes in and examines him, "Oh thank GOD! It's just the batteries. I saw the whole thing on TV, I was really worried the heat from the lava would cause him to malfunction... but it turns out the lava was... fake."

Frisk replies casually "It didn't feel fake... I figured you would have come sooner, what kept you?"

Nervously, Alphys replies "O-oh! That's because they used heaters to make it feel real! Also... I was examining t-the Legendary Artifact... I... uh... didn't actually see the whole thing... Eheh... heh..."

Frisk goes to look at how they managed to make it look like they went downwards... It's a combination of well placed lights, fans to make the lava patterns look like they are subtly moving, rolling fabric screens to recreate the view, and some heaters to make it uncomfortably hot...

Looking back to Alphys, Frisk replies. "Oh, ok. Let me know what you find, OK?"

"S-sure! I... uh... I'll text you, OK?"

Frisk nods and walks over to Muffet, who is standing politely to the side, and gives her the gold they promised. "Here you go Muffet, 537 gold."

Muffet is pleased with their donation.
"Why thank you dearie! Your donation will let us finally get all the spiders out of the RUINS! Maybe we could even open up a new bakery!"

Frisk gives a little smile and continues on to their destination... the MTT Resort.

 

Sans is standing outside of the resort, waiting.

Frisk tries to hold in a yawn, but fails... Frisk says "hey Sans..." after their yawn subsides.

Sans replies casually. "hey kiddo, you look pretty tired. sure you're up for this right now?"

Feeling a little frustrated, Frisk retorts. "I'm fine, I was just hoping to avoid having to fight Mettaton... but I couldn't."

"alright, well, let's get some grub then."

Trying to be humorous, Frisk asks "You reserved the plates, utensils, and food right? Heh..."

"yep, a neat little meal. don't worry, its on me... you know, you should probably eat more than candy and pie."

After replying, Sans waves for Frisk to follow and teleports them to the restaurant's check-in clerk... he actually did reserve the meals...

Winking at Frisk's amazement, he replies "when you told mettaton that you were gonna meet me here, he made sure i reserved everything so he could record us enjoying it..."

It takes a moment, but the pieces click for Frisk... "Wait, he was trying to kill me though... why go through all that trouble?"

Sans simply shrugs as they are taken to their table. Frisk doesn't see any cameras... but they can feel them.

The meal is actually... nice. Frisk chats with Sans about stuff that happened in the previous timeline, but eventually can't keep themself awake... they fall asleep at the table... At least they finished their food.

Sans takes them to HOME, and tucks them into bed. "g'night, kiddo, we can have that lesson tomorrow."

Despite not remembering Frisk from before the RESET, Sans feels the same fond recollection that all the other monsters feel. He was sceptical at first, but Frisk has proven themselves time and again now...

Sans thinks to himself as he teleports to his own room, 'Tomorrow is going to be a rather busy day...'

 

* A WHISPER IS HEARD THROUGH THE VOID.
"...Frisk?"

Chapter Text

* FRISK FLOATS IN THE VOID WHILE CHARA ATTEMPTS TO WAKE THEM.

"...Frisk? Hey... Wake up..."

* No response...

"Frisk... this isn't funny. Wake up."

* No response...

"...Frisk... what happened?... Please wake up, Frisk..."

* THE ARCHWAY LEADING INTO THE RUINS APPEARS.

"Come on Frisk, wake up! You have to go..."

* No response...

"If you won't wake up... then I'll just have to force you to go back!"

* CHARA GRABS FRISK AND PULLS THEM THROUGH THE ARCHWAY.

 

Chara wakes up in a familiar room. 'This isn't good.'

The smell of a Butterscotch-Cinnamon pie gets Chara's attention. 'Is that... mom's pie??'

While attempting to get out of bed, Chara notices that their movements are sluggish.
'I've been dead for so long... I forgot how to move... wait... how do I talk?...'

Chara's thoughts are interrupted as Toriel peeks into the room.

In a gentle and quiet voice, Toriel asks "Are you having nightmares, my child?"

Speaking is difficult, but Chara manages to say "n-no, mo-... Toriel..."

Toriel finds the slip endearing, and chooses not to bring attention to it, instead she goes over to the bed and sits at the edge.

She places her hand on Frisk's forehead, making sure they don't have a fever, and says,
"Hmm... You are a little warm, but it should not be a problem. Rest for as long as you need, my child."

Toriel gets up from the bed and leaves the room, taking the slice of pie with her so it doesn't go bad.

Chara slowly and carefully begins trying to move...

Their movements are sluggish and imprecise, but eventually they manage to get Frisk's body into a standing position.

They force Frisk's SOUL into view... 'That isn't good... it's... Turning green? Why didn't anyone notice? Wh-...what are those purple cracks??'

After putting Frisk's SOUL back, Chara slowly makes their way to the door of Asriel's old bedroom.

Frisk's body is mostly slumped over, because Chara cannot keep her head up...

Because they aren't used to moving Frisk's legs, one of them is mostly sliding along.

It takes several minutes, but eventually Chara is able to gain more control over Frisk's body as they walk down the hallway.

By the time they get to the living room, Frisk just looks tired.

Toriel looks up from her book, "...little one, you should not be up if you are still tired."

Chara speaks. "M-... Toriel... something... is wrong. F-... m-my SOUL... looks... funny."

Hearing that alarms Toriel, she discards the book she's holding while quickly moving to kneel near Frisk.

After placing a hand on Frisk's shoulder, she pulls their SOUL out.

Other than a small circle in the center of their SOUL, and what appears to be a thin red outline, Frisk's SOUL is green.

Purple squared cracks, with an other-worldly glow coming from them, mar the surface of Frisk's SOUL. It looks like it's about to shatter.

The cracks seem to originate from the edges of the small circle of red in the center of Frisk's SOUL. The cracks have not reached the edges of their SOUL.

Toriel's eyes go wide in surprise "Oh dear, this is cannot be good at all! Stay here for a moment, Frisk... I'll be right back..."

She rushes to her room and returns moments later wearing a hooded cloak.

When Toriel returns, she picks Frisk up, holds them close within the cloak, then leaves HOME down into the rest of the Underground.

 

Moving quickly, but carefully, Toriel makes it through the long passage in record time.

She passes through the door leading to Snowdin, eventually making her way to Riverperson, and requests a ride to Hotland.

'If anyone would know what is happening to their SOUL... surely the royal scientist would...?'

Toriel does her best to hide her face from others, she does not feel ready to truly leave the RUINS, and she cannot afford distractions.

As she approaches the Hotland Lab, Toriel looks down to Frisk and says, in a reassuring tone,
"be not afraid, my child, everything will be alright..."

Toriel enters the lab, but no one is there; she shouts. "Hello?! I need immediate assistance! Alphys?!?!"

Frantic shuffling can be heard upstairs and, after a few minutes, Alphys comes down the escalator.
"T-toriel?? What's wron- Is... is that the human? Are they hurt? They were fine y-yesterday! Wh-what ha-"

Interrupting Alphys, Toriel says, "Frisk's SOUL is... Something is wrong, there are purple cracks all over it and it is turning green!"

Alphys is surprised by the information. "What?? I've never heard of a human's SOUL cracking from magic... May I see?"

Toriel nods and pulls Frisk's SOUL into view...

The red outline appears to be getting thicker very slowly... the purple cracks have almost reached the edges of Frisk's SOUL.

Gently, Alphys pulls the SOUL closer to herself for further examination.

After a few moments, she takes a picture and sends someone a message with her phone.

< To: funnybones
IMG_7314_43_21.PNG
SANS, I NEED HELP!

 

A few seconds after she presses send, Sans quickly walks out from the elevator and approaches.

"... hey tori, alphys. mind giving me alone time with the kiddo?"

Toriel is surprised to see her joke-buddy here, but not for long... 'He does share some features of that old scientist...'

She places Frisk down slowly and makes sure they can stand on their own. Then, she and Alphys leave to the second story.

Chara is wary, they don't know what's going on.

Sans becomes more serious. "Why don't you walk over here for me, Chara?"

Though startled, Chara complies as well as they can... and says "...Frisk wont... wake up..."

Sans' eyes go dark. "what did you do?"

Chara almost falls backwards in shock from the accusation, "n-nothing! I... I just... tried to pull them... back..."

Taking a moment to consider the information, Sans' eyes return. He brings their SOULs closer for examination before texting someone...

< To: ALPHYS
i need a x40 magnifying glass.

 

Alphys rushes down and goes into the True Lab.

After a few minutes, she returns with a powerful magnifying glass and hands it to Sans, then rushes back upstairs.

Sans examines the edge of Frisk's SOUL... after a few minutes, he speaks. "weird... guess i was wrong..."

He sends another message through his phone.

< To: ALPHYS
you can come back down.

 

The two ladies come downstairs and Sans asks "hey alphys, do you have a recording of the fight?"

Alphys responds promptly "Y-yes... Why? Everything looked f-fine when I watched."

Sans doesn't respond, he just looks at her... Eventually she leaves to get the video.

The group watches the video in x2 speed from the beginning, and, up until the fight begins, everything looks normal.

Sans notices a problem as soon as Frisk uses magic to change the playing field.

Sighing, Sans says,
"seems the kiddo used so much purple magic that it damaged their SOUL. it couldn't fix itself, so it slowly turned green as perseverance leaked out. ...where's muffet?"

Alphys replies with a hint of worry,
"last I saw, she was g-going to get the spiders from the RUINS... I d-don't know where she is right now th-"

Chara interrupts, "I... feel funny... It feels like...-"

Suddenly, Chara's SOUL pops out from Frisk's body and Frisk begins to fall to the ground.

Moving quickly, Toriel catches them. "Frisk!!" Tears well up in Toriel's eyes as she holds Frisk's limp body close to her.

Sans vanishes for a moment and returns with a small cylindrical container, then scoops Chara's SOUL into it.

Chara's SOUL appears to be filling in very slowly.

As casually as ever, Sans says
"don't worry tori, it wasn't the kiddo's soul. just a... passenger. seems like more's going on than i thought."

Alphys speaks up, "Toriel... let me t-take them up to my room. They can sleep on my b-bed for now..."

Toriel hesitates but says, "...please, allow me to carry them."

With a nod, Alphys guides Toriel back upstairs and unpacks her bed for Frisk to lay on...

Unsurprisingly, it's adorned from head to foot with Mew Mew Kissy Cutie paraphernalia.

 

Sans contemplates the events that have taken place while the two are upstairs...

'let's see... frisk used purple magic and somehow caused a chain reaction, causing their soul to crack and leak perseverance, and chara's soul is filling in... one lost something... the other gained something? ...did frisk inadvertently provide chara's SOUL with perseverance?...'

Forgetting to notify the ladies upstairs, Sans places Chara's SOUL on the desk and leaves to search for Muffet.

'no... that isn't possible... is it? no... without perseverance, their soul wou-... oh no...'

Sans looks for Muffet faster, realizing that, without any Perseverance, Frisk's SOUL will shatter faster than normal; alive or not.

Meeting only the occasional small spider, none of them really know where Muffet is. 'seems she's been quite busy today...'

Sans decides to check her lair, having not done so already since he was under the impression that she was out.
'probably should've checked the security cameras first...'

Muffet is attending her bakery stand, and her prices are more reasonable now. "Hello dearie~ care to purchase a spider pastry?"

In his usual tone, laced with a sense of urgency, Sans replies,
"not now muffet, i actually need your help with something. remember your fight with the kid?"

Happily, Muffet replies "Oh, yes I do. It was lovely, and I can't really call it a fight. It was too fun! Ahuhuhu~ ...Is something wrong?"

Sans nods and replies, "yea, when they used magic their soul cracked and started leaking perseverance. they're about to be bone-dry."

Unsettled, but otherwise unaware of how dire the situation is, Muffet replies "That can't be pleasant... Is there any way I can help, dearie?"

Casually reassuring, Sans says "yea, i think we can give 'em some purple magic as a replacement. they're at the lab, i'll meet you there."

Sans turns and leaves before Muffet can reply. Muffet closes shop, then makes her way through Hotland and meets up with Sans at the Lab.

Upon entering the Lab, Sans guides Muffet upstairs where Frisk is laying. Toriel and Alphys are beside the bed.

"hey, tori, alphys, we're gonna try givin' the kiddo some perseverance. might want to stand back, just in case."

Toriel shakes her head, refusing to leave Frisk's side, but Alphys nods and goes downstairs.

Sans sighs and says, "i understand tori... c'mon muffet, lets try to fix 'em up."

Muffet and Sans go to different sides of the bed and hold their hands above Frisk's body.

Sans pulls Frisk's SOUL into view, then the two begin channelling Perseverance from themselves and into Frisk...

The room is filled with a dull purple glow.

After a few minutes Sans stops, and says,
"this isn't working... they're absorbing the magic, but not the right way... i have an idea... can you turn them purple?"

Curious, Muffet asks "how will that help, dearie?"

Sans replies,
"we're gonna try giving 'em perseverance while they're purple. might be what their soul needs to absorb it correctly."

Her curiosity satiated, Muffet pours magical purple tea over Frisk's SOUL. It turns purple, as expected.

The cracks in their SOUL are still visible, due to the strange light coming from them.

 

Sans holds his hands above Frisk's body again, and Muffet follows. The two begin channelling energy from themselves and into Frisk.

No one in the room except Sans can see the changes taking place, since Sans can see through the forced Purple colour.

He sees that Frisk's SOUL, aside from the red center, is slowly turning white.

After half an hour, Muffet becomes restless. "As much as I would love to keep helping, dearie, I'm not sure how much longer I can keep this up."

Sans stops, which prompts Muffet to stop too. "what a coincidence, i was gonna say we're done. you can set 'em back to normal now."

When Muffet removes her magic, everyone in the room, except Sans, is surprised to see that Frisk's SOUL is pure white, with a red circle in the center.

The cracks are still there and have reached the edge of Frisk's SOUL, but the glow is gone.

Toriel grabs Frisk's hand gently and holds it with her eyes closed.

Alphys returns and sees Frisk's SOUL, she's concerned.
"Uhh... Sans... Th-that... doesn't look right at all... Isn't their SOUL s-supposed to be... red?"

In a casual but reassuring voice, Sans replies,
"actually, 'pure' human souls are white. the red comes from dt... but don't let the old royal scientist hear that. he was sure dt's colorless, since the other soul colors aren't changed by dt. ...hey, can you go get that other soul?"

Confused, but feeling way out of her area of expertise, Alphys hesitates for a moment before going back downstairs to get the SOUL.

When she returns, Sans notices that the SOUL has stopped filling in, but it's still fairly thin.
"alright, we're gonna put this soul back. i think it took the dt when the kiddo destabilized."

Before he can take the container, Alphys speaks up, concerned.
"W-wait... Are you s-sure we should? T-this is another h-human SOUL! How was it e-even attached to Frisk's SOUL in the first p-p-place?!"

Sans sighs. "i'm too lazy to explain it all. have a better idea?"

Alphys thinks for a moment... then she remembers the DT Extraction machine.
"We can extract the excess DT from this SOUL, using the DT Extraction machine, then inject Frisk's SOUL with it."

As casually as ever, Sans retorts,
"that could work... but you don't know how much dt belongs to this soul, and how much is the kiddo's. we don't have long, so we've gotta do something now."

The pressure from the situation, and also having self-doubt due to her own failures, causes Alphys to hesitate for a moment...

But she finds some... forgotten strength? It feels familiar, and yet not.

Alphys finds herself feeling more assertive, due to the surge of hidden self confidence.
"I w-won't let you do that... There's no way th-that another SOUL being attached to Frisk's, human or not, will h-help them! Take Frisk down to the True Lab, we're doing it my way."

After taking a moment to breathe, Alphys turns to Toriel.
"Toriel, I would appreciate it if you and Muffet would... No... you and Muffet are going to wait up here, it's.. too d-dangerous."

Toriel considers ignoring Alphys' demands, but ultimately relents... She realizes that she'd just get in the way.

Sans is surprised by Alphys' sudden assertiveness, but he's OK with her choice. "alright, let's go. we don't have any time to waste."

 

The two go down to the True lab in a flash... Alphys is initially taken by surprise, but snaps out of it quickly.

Alphys hurries to the DT extraction machine and places the SOUL within it, while Sans puts Frisk in one of the beds.

Working quickly, Alphys starts up the machine and calibrates it, then goes to the hidden control room.

The loud humming of the old device sends vibrations through the Lab.

The extraction process is significantly less flashy than one would expect... disappointingly so.

Carefully, Alphys pulls DT energy out from the mystery SOUL.

A thin red strand shoots out from the SOUL and into the machine, and the already thin line that makes up the SOUL grows thinner...

After a few minutes, Alphys begins to second guess herself... but Sans walks in and puts a hand on her shoulder, with a reassuring expression.

An hour passes by and Sans speaks up "alright, stop extracting, if you take any more they'll vanish. i'm gonna check on frisk."

Before he leaves, Alphys asks, "Sans... wh-who... does this SOUL belong to?..."

Sans pauses for a moment, but doesn't answer. Alphys decides she will just ask again after they are done, and goes to collect the extracted DT.

There's a lot more than she expected...

With the extracted DT energy, Alphys goes into the bed room where Frisk is laying and looks to Sans.
"H-here it is... I... I don't think I c-can do this after all... Sans..."

Understanding her dilemma, Sans takes the vial and syringe. "no worries, alphys. wait upstairs if you want."

Alphys responds quickly "No. I'm g-going to stay here."

Sans shrugs, then pulls Frisk's SOUL into view... it's dimmer than before.

Sans uses the special syringe to pierce the very center of their SOUL, and injects the DT energy into it.

As their SOUL is filled with Determination, it slowly starts to take on a pinkish hue and the cracks begin filling in.

The area around the needle is already bright red, but it's slowly spreading out.

The two monitor Frisk's SOUL after Sans is done ejecting the DT into it. Eventually, their SOUL is one solid shade of bright red.

Alphys takes the opportunity, while they are waiting, to question Sans. "Sans, you never t-told me whose SOUL that is..."

Ignoring her question, Sans says "hey, i bet tori is really worried. could ya go tell her everything's ok so far? i'll stay and watch the kid."

Huffing in frustration at Sans' diversion, Alphys replies. "Fine. But when I come b-back, I want answers."

A few amalgamates wander through the room, one looms over Frisk and Sans... but they keep to themselves.

When Frisk stirs, Sans breathes a sigh of relief. He pokes Frisk's forehead, and they stir briefly...

He decides to up the ante, and pulls out a small feather and tickles their nose with it... Frisk swats at the feather, and Sans' grin widens slightly.

He continues to tickle Frisk's nose with the feather, and eventually they sneeze a little...

Alphys enters the room just as Frisk sneezes.
"Kawaii~! ... Ahem... I-I mean... Th-that sneeze was so cute~!... *sigh*... So, are you going to tell me who that other SOUL belongs to?"

Sans replies bluntly, "nope. we can't let certain people know. you already have too many secrets." Then points to the amalgamate next to them.

Alphys blushes out of embarrassment... "F-fine... do you think we can take Frisk upstairs before they wake up?"

With an amused tone, Sans replies "if you're worried 'bout the kiddo seeing the amalgamates, i think they already know."

Shaking her head, Alphys says,
"no, I am more worried about Toriel. She's worried sick... Frisk already told me that they know about the amalgamates..."

Sans replies with a brief chuckle "heh, well let's not keep 'em waiting." Then he picks up Frisk and they both go to the elevator.

 

As the elevator ascends, Alphys finally realizes a question she has been meaning to ask. "Sans, when did you m-meet Toriel?"

With a mischievous look on his face, he replies "oh, i broke into her house yesterday..."

Alphys is taken by surprise, "Sans! Th-that-!"

Sans interrupts her, "heh, i'm pulling your leg. she left the door open and i was curious, so i wandered in and we met."

After taking a moment to reminisce, Sans continues.
"that was before frisk got to hotland. we told knock-knock jokes to each other when the door was closed, so i recognized her voice."

Interested in the possibilities, Alphys asks, "so... are you t-two... a thing?"

Very amused, Sans replies,
"heh, no. i've been helping her cope with the kiddo uh... exploding, and then coming back to life. also helping her work through her fears and failures from the whole 'left to the ruins' thing... and asgore."

Alarmed by the word "exploding," Alphys begins to ask Sans for details... but the elevator stops and the doors open.

Frisk pokes Sans' forehead and sleepily asks, "hey, where are we?"

Before Sans could answer, however, Toriel rushes forward and takes Frisk from Sans' arms.

She holds Frisk tightly against her, hoping that, by doing so, they will never be hurt again.

Holding back her tears, she says,
"my child, I was so worried about you! I feared the worst was going to happen... I... I can not let you go any further... It was foolish of me to let you go in the first place. It doesn't matter if you have done this all before, you are still just a child..."

Frisk squirms, they are uncomfortable in the fuzzy boss monster's tight hold. "Hnng...! ...Then come with me."

Toriel responds, frustrated and scared, "why can you not just stay down here, with us? We will keep you safe, healthy, and happy!"

After ceasing their attempts to be more comfortable, Frisk replies.
"...My parents will miss me, and I'll miss them... I fell down here because I was being bad... I went off exploring, alone."

Toriel relaxes her hold on Frisk, and looks at their face with sorrow.
"I am sorry, Frisk... I... should have considered that you have a family to return to... It was self-"

Interrupting her, Frisk puts on an adorable smile and says,
"you just want me to be safe, like any mom would... You may not be my mom-mom, but you are my goat-mom... Please, come with me?"

Seeing that adorable face, and hearing those wonderful words, brings more tears to Toriel's eyes.

She sighs and puts on a bittersweet smile, then says "it looks like I do not have much of a choice, do I?"

Frisk shakes their head.

Reluctantly, Toriel sets them down.
"Very well, I will leave the RUINS for good... we will have to move the monsters in the RUINS to waterfall, though."

Muffet curtsies to Toriel and says,
"you can leave the spiders to me, Queen Toriel. I received a generous donation and will be able to get them. Ahuhuhu~."

Toriel nods and says "Very well, lady Muffet, I will leave the spiders' transfer to you."

Curious, Frisk asks "so... why are we at the lab? What happened? All I remember is falling asleep..."

Sans speaks up. "you used too much magic, kiddo. should've waited for your lesson."

Muffet says "if I'm not needed here, dearies, I should start moving the spiders out of the RUINS."

Amused with himself, Sans replies "i think weave got it now, muffet. if we need help, we'll send a message through the web."

Everyone, except Alphys, snickers at the puns while Muffet leaves.

Alphys is confused as to how the mood could have become so relaxed so quickly...
"Uh... F-Frisk almost died... just minutes ago... How c-can you make jokes right now??"

Nonchalantly, Frisk replies "Danger is the spice of life. Besides, I almost die all the thyme. ...It's pretty normal for me down here."

Exasperated, Alphys covers her face with one of her hands and replies "Oh GOD... Sans is rubbing off on you..."

Sans shrugs while Frisk points at Alphys with 'finger guns' and says,
"to be frank, I've always bean this way. I just needed a kindred spirit to show me the ropes."

Alphys looks to Sans with an unamused face. Amused, Sans replies "don't blame me alphys, the kid's got their own funny-bone."

 

A moment of silence passes...

Becoming more serious, Frisk breaks the silence and says,
"Alphys, I need you to make something that can travel long distances, preferably through the air, and can carry up to seven passengers... plus some luggage."

Curious from such a specific request, Alphys asks "I c-could do that, but why do you ask?"

Frisk replies,
"I think that if you can make something like that, it would get humans to be more accepting of monsters. A lot of people were suspicious last time... Also... A flying vehicle will make us superior. Remember, we only have horses on the surface."

Sans interjects "hold your horses kiddo. we should find out how the artifact works first, don't ya think?"

After shaking their head, Frisk replies,
"time moves slower in here. If we get better transportation now, it'll save us time later. Oh, that reminds me! We need to expand the UnderNet and Cell networks out to the surface too."

Still worried, Toriel speaks up.
"I think you should rest for a while, Frisk... at least for a few hours. You should take some time to take care of yourself..."

Sans speaks before Frisk can. "i've got an idea, how 'bout having the kiddo stick with me for awhile. we can do all my favourite things."

With an incredulous face Alphys replies, "Sans... You don't do anything."

His grin wides a bit and Sans replies,
"exactly. it's the perfect way for frisk to relax. i can even throw in some jokes, maybe a little food, and a few pointers on magic so they don't almost kill themselves again."

Toriel is hesitant at first, but she nods.
"I think that is a good idea, Sans. Just... please be careful. I would join you two, but I need to help move monsters from the RUINS."

Sans replies casually, "don't worry, tori. i'll take care of the kid, just like i promised."

Toriel nods, then hesitantly leaves after giving Frisk a hug. "I will be back, Frisk. Stay safe."

Only Sans, Alphys, and Frisk remain in the Lab.

Frisk looks to Alphys again,
"so, will you be able to do that Alphys? Make something for transportation, and a thing to bring the UnderNet to the surface?"

Curious, Alphys asks "I need some more information first... Who are you expecting to have ride in this vehicle?"

Without hesitation, Frisk replies,
"You, me, Undyne, Sans, Papyrus, Toriel, and Asgore. We'll be the first to talk with humans. ...I'm not the ambassador yet, but I should prepare for that duty anyway... I didn't really do anything last time."

Beginning to make plans in her head, Alphys says "OK, I will get s-started on that..."

Sans waves for Frisk to follow him, but Frisk asks Alphys "Any news on the artifact before we go?"

Alphys shakes her head, then says "excuse me, I need to go think... If you need me, send a text."

 

Frisk leaves the lab with Sans, they head to waterfall together and go to the bench where the Abandoned Quiche used to lay...

When they are both sitting on the bench, Sans speaks. "i might've found a way to help chara... but it's dangerous."

Their interest piqued, Frisk asks "how?"

Sans pulls a small container from under his shirt, it has Chara's SOUL in it.

Frisk is puzzled... "Wait.. how did you remove Chara from my SOUL?"

In a matter-of-fact tone, Sans says,
"actually, when all your perseverance leaked out of your soul, it stopped being the same color as theirs. so they couldn't stay attached. i'm surprised they were attached for so long."

"But... how did that happen?"

Sans replies,
"when you were purple and used magic, the uncontrolled release caused your soul to crack. the magic took most of your perseverance with it."

Frisk is still confused.

Starting to feel exasperated from the explanations, Sans replies.
"souls are made of the same magic we use. you accidentally used your soul's magic when it cracked. i've never seen it before, to be honest."

The pieces are slowly coming together in Frisk's mind. "So... did you fix it by... giving me perseverance while I was purple?"

Sans nods.
"i don't know why it worked, though... hey, i've been meaning to ask... where'd you get all that magic? you haven't been here long enough to get it naturally."

Frisk touches their face with one of their hands, before looking to Sans, and replies,
"my SAVE stars had a weird purple glow after the RESET. I tried to pull it away from one and it exploded. I think I got it from there."

Curious, Sans asks, "huh... that's pretty strange. i'm guessing it has something to do with that creature you talked about?"

Nodding Frisk replies "yea... maybe." They shiver briefly as they recall the horrifying creature... then continue speaking.
"I could feel them reaching for me... even when I was dead I could feel them pulling at my SOUL... until I RESET."

Sans pats Frisk on the head, "don't worry kiddo, i wont let that thing get you again..."

A moment of silence passes before Sans continues.
"sounds like some pretty twisted magic's at work. something must've been wrong with the magic you absorbed, might've been from that creature... if that's the case, we can't use that method to help chara. too dangerous."

Frisk nods in agreement.

 

Another moment of silence, and Sans decides to play some small games with Frisk.

They start off with rock, paper, scissors... Sans doesn't lose... because he cheats.

When Frisk catches on, they switch to "I spy."

After a few rounds, Frisk starts feeling hungry... "Hey, Sans, you think we could get something to eat?"

"sure kiddo, have anything in particular you wanna eat?"

Frisk thinks for a moment, but shrugs and says "surprise me."

Sans smirks, and says "alright. follow me."

They both get up from the bench and Frisk follows Sans. After turning the corner... They're back at the bench.

Proud of himself, Sans asks, "surprised?"

Frisk replies with an unamused tone, "you know what I meant, Sans."

"alright, c'mon, i know a great place on 'king's path' where they serve 'pho.' it's an old human food from before the war. vietnamese I think."

Curious, Frisk asks "...Fuh? ...What's the name of the restaurant?"

Sans' gets a mischievous look on his face, and says "you'll see."

Frisk follows Sans again... and they appear inside a restaurant. It looks much different than Grillby's. The walls are light pink, the floors black tiles, there are more tables than booths, and the bar stools are bolted to the ground. It's also a bit larger than Grillby's.

There are no signs indicating the name of the restaurant... The only sign is a bowl of noodles wearing a crown, with "PHO" above it.

"Sans... I don't see a name anywhere."

With a wink, Sans says "don't worry, kiddo, the barkeep'll say it if you order the noodles."

'Their menu has more items than Grillby's, but the noodles are the only logical choice right now...'  Frisk orders some noodles.

Sans does as well.

The monster behind the counter opens a metal cover on the wall, most likely to the kitchen, and yells "TWO ORDERS OF PHO-KING NOODLES!"

Frisk's eyes go wide and their mouth is agape, they turn to Sans. "Sans!!"

Sans' face is one of a kid who is super proud of himself, his smile is huge.
"heh, funny huh? they're not even swearing. i tried asking papyrus if he wanted any, but he felt insulted... he went crazy when he saw the place."

Frisk contemplates how such an establishment can exist... then remembers Asgore's simple naming scheme...
'A Pho restaurant... on King's path... that serves noodles... Named "Pho-King Noodles"...'

Gently applying a generous helping of palm to their face, Frisk sighs and says "bless king Fluffybuns and his simple names..."

The two eat their Pho in silence.

As they finish their meal, Frisk comments "we need one of these on the Surface... Not because of the name, but because the noodles are great."

Sans smirks in response, then talks to the monster behind the bar. "Hey, barkeep, put 'em on my tab."

The monster nods. As Sans gets up, Frisk follows.

When they leave, they are back at the bench.

Sans stretches a bit, then says "hey, kiddo, feel up for a magic lesson?"

Frisk thinks for a moment, then replies.
"I learned from a friend that, after a good meal, it's nice to lie on the ground and feel like garbage for a bit... It really helps clear your mind. Maybe we can do that, before the lesson?"

Replying with his usual voice, with a trace of amusement, Sans says "sure thing kiddo, let me know when you're ready."

Frisk sits on the ground, and looks up to see Sans still standing.

Curious, Frisk asks "why don't you join me? We can lie down and feel like trash together!"

Sans shrugs and sits on the ground. "sure, why not?"

Frisk lies down on the ground and Sans follows.

Sans' head is above theirs like a mirror image. The two lie there and let everything fade from their mind.

The calm lapping of the nearby water, the echoes of daily life further in the cavern, and whispers from the echo flowers... it all slowly fades away. Once again, Frisk clears their mind and allows reality to creep into their consciousness. They feel like a small piece of a larger whole, insignificant, but still useful.

'One man's trash, is another man's treasure' they think to themselves as the weight of everything fades away. It's unusually refreshing.

The twinkling gems on the roof dance and glitter in Frisk's mind. The sound of reality is a symphony of... 'an annoying dog?'

Frisk gets up. There is darkness in all directions... The only thing visible is a small white dog in front of them... It's wearing a red robe?

The annoying dog yips and Frisk wakes up. They stand up and notice that Sans also dozed off... They let him sleep for a little longer.

Frisk takes a few moments to contemplate all of the events thus far. After a few minutes, Sans starts to wake up.

They go over and poke his forehead.

He swats at their finger and says, sleepily "no paps, i'm not sleeping... just checking for light leaks."

Frisk pokes his forehead again, and this time he stirs more and eventually sits up.

"oh... heh, sorry kiddo. i must've dozed off. ready for the lesson?"

Frisk nods excitedly, then sits with their legs crossed and their hands facing each other in front of them.

"heh, eager to learn huh? lemme see your soul first; gotta make sure it's ok."

Frisk complies. Their SOUL looks normal.

"looks good... i was worried there'd be scars, but, since the center was solid, it healed properly..."

Frisk puts their SOUL back and returns to their previous pose.

Sans thinks for a moment, then speaks. "ok, first i wanna see how many green bullets you can make."

Frisk nods, and focuses. The magic within them... feels different.

Or... maybe the other magic they had is what felt different? Either way, it feels better.

Clearing their mind is easy, since they already did, and their face relaxes... After a few seconds, they summon a single green Band-aid shaped bullet.

"that all-?"

Another.

"oh, y-"

Another, this time faster... then another, and another.

Each new bullet forms twice as fast as the last, and Frisk makes as many green bullets as they can.

Only slightly concerned, Sans says,
"woah there buddy, not too much. you're gonna use up your magic till you're bone-dry. can't teach you how to use magic you don't have."

Opening their eyes, Frisk sees... too many. Frisk can't count them all... but it feels like there are about 34 bullets.

With a subtly impressed undertone, Sans says "looks like you're getting the hang of that, good. what type of magic would ya like to work on next?"

Frisk thinks for a moment, then tosses the bullets at Sans, who doesn't react to them, and says "Cyan."

With a smirk, Sans replies, "purple it is."

Confused, Frisk asks "Wait, what? But... Are you playing a joke on me?"

Somewhat dismissively at first, Sans responds.
"you can learn Cyan from undyne, she's better at teaching that than me... besides, gotta make sure events don't repeat. not sure tori can handle you almost dying, again, anytime soon."

Only a little disappointed, Frisk nods.

Back to his usual tone, Sans says,
"the trick with purple magic... is to imagine lines. it's all about patterns, and the easiest pattern to learn is a straight line. so, i want you to imagine a connection between your hands, then feel it."

Frisk follows the instructions and a purple line forms between their hands. They don't need to close their eyes to focus any more.

"good job kiddo, that was faster than i expected."

With a hint of pride in their voice, Frisk replies "I made a small spear out of purple magic to defend against Undyne."

"oh yea? remember how you did it?"

Frisk thinks for a moment... then shakes their head. "All I remember is that I was copying her."

"heh, well, let's see if you can repeat it. while you're focusing on making the spear, keep in mind that you need to be specific, because if you're not you'll explode. again."

Frisk nods, and returns to focusing. The purple line between their hands fades as they switch to holding one hand out, acting as though they're going to grab something. Frisk begins to focus and tries to repeat making a small spear. Carefully, Frisk pulls magic from their SOUL and wills it to their desired shape. It takes a few moments, but eventually Frisk is able to make... something. It isn't quite a spear.

Teasingly, Sans asks "is that supposed to be a dry spaghetti noodle?"

Frisk sticks their tongue out at Sans and replies "no, it's supposed to be a spear."

Sans replies casually,
"try again, but this time feel the weight and power of the spear as it forms... also, instead of taking the magic out slowly, imagine a space for all the magic the spear needs and fill it. that way you wont risk taking all your magic, and you can still conjure the spear quickly."

After tossing the fairy-sized spear aside, Frisk tries again.

They hold their hand out and imagine the spear being as long as themself, with a weight and hitting power equal to a branch.

Trying his best to restrain himself, Sans replies teasingly "i'm glad to see you're branching out, kiddo, but that doesn't look like a spear."

It isn't... Frisk was so busy imagining a branch... that they made one. They get up and toss it in the river.

Frisk looks disappointed.

In a reassuring and cheery voice, Sans says,
"don't worry kiddo, it takes practice. you're a lot further along than ya think. that was a grade-a branch. if it wasn't purple, i'd say it was a real one."

Frisk feels a little better...

Sans speaks up again "tell ya what, how 'bout trying to use purple magic to find patterns, instead of make stuff? that's the usual starting point."

Frisk nods, then asks "how are we gonna do that?"

Waving for Frisk to follow, Sans moves to leave the small area and says "we're gonna go to the lab, lots of stuff to practice with there."

They follow Sans to the Lab. The sounds of tinkering and science can be heard upstairs.

Sans walks over to Alphys' desk and pulls out a small broken circuit board from one of the drawers.

Holding the board out for Frisk, Sans says,
"alright, kiddo, i want you to use purple magic to trace the lines on this. you shouldn't have to think much about it, just let the magic do its thing. when you get the hang of that, i want you to trace the full path from the plus sign to the negative sign."

Frisk nods and takes the circuit board... but they are not entirely sure what to do. "Uh... how do I get the magic to do that?..."

Slightly embarrassed that he forgot to explain it, Sans replies,
"oh, heh, sorry. while gathering purple magic, imagine that it wants to follow and fill in a pattern on your target. you only need to know where part of the pattern starts. when you've gathered enough magic, move it to your target and let it go. for the first exercise you only want it to follow the lines, not the flow of energy. don't forget to feel the same desire you want the magic to have, and then give that feeling to the magic."

Frisk feels like they understand it a little better now. They concentrate and follow the steps provided.

After several attempts, Frisk is able to trace the lines on the circuit board. It's a lot easier than they anticipated. At first they were ambiguous when imagining the magic searching for a pattern, so it just splintered out everywhere, but once they began imagining the magic following the lines it worked perfectly. Frisk has an idea.

Using their new knowledge, Frisk attempts to conjure a spear again.

They imagine the magic following the same pattern as one of Undyne's spears, and let it form on its own.

It works. Frisk smiles subtly.

"hey, good job kiddo. just be careful or you'll poke someone's eye out."

Frisk drops the spear quickly and backs away from it while asking, "I-is... Is that what happened to Undyne??"

Amused, Sans replies "what? heh, no that was something else."

With a relieved sigh, Frisk picks their magic spear up... 'Huh... I wonder how far down the river the branch I made got.'

In a casual tone, Sans says "i think that's about it for today. keep practising, and be careful."

Slightly disappointed, Frisk replies "OK," Then they remember Papyrus' last call. "I'm gonna hang out with Undyne and Papyrus, OK?"

"k."

In a questioningly-hopeful tone, Frisk asks "Will you let me know if there is any progress with the artifact, and stuff?"

Sans replies "yea, don't worry kiddo, i'll keep you up to date. go have fun." Then messes up Frisk's hair.

Frisk smiles back subtly and leaves the Lab, they take the broken circuit board with them for practice.

 

Alphys is working furiously on a prototype vehicle as Sans appears upstairs. Sans stays out of the way, but waits for her to take a break.

When Alphys turns to get a tool, she sees him standing nearby. "Sans? I thought you're s-supposed to be watching over Frisk?"

As casual as ever, Sans replies "we finished the lesson early. they went to go hang out with papyrus and undyne."

Somewhat worried, Alphys asks "a-are you sure that is a g-good idea?" Then returns to her work when something makes threatening noises.

Shrugging, Sans says "i think they know what they're doing, i'm sure it'll be ok. oh, I gave 'em a broken circuit board from your desk."

"Huh?? Oh, that's fine. Probably from their old Cell phone. Even if it isn't, there's nothing important in those drawers anymore..."

"i'm gonna head down to the true lab. mind filling me in on what you were doing last with the artifact?"

Surprised by Sans' statement and question, Alphys almost thinks he's pulling her leg...
"Oh! You're s-serious... I c-can't find anything with the magnifying glass set, so I was going to try having someone use p-purple magic to find the patterns."

Sans considers the information for a moment, then says "k" and leaves.

In the True Lab, Sans wanders around until he finds the room where the Legendary Artifact is being held. He disables the Anti-Magic Field and begins examining the artifact.

Thanks to purple magic, he's able to trace the spaces where all of the arcane patterns used to be. They're all messed up, and look like someone switched to a ridiculously thick font.

It doesn't take long for Sans to discover a small crack in the Artifact. He would have missed it if he wasn't skilled with pattern magic.

He pulls out the magnifying glass he forgot to give back to Alphys, and checks to see if there is any debris in the small crack.

There isn't.

He uses a Divination spell to recover the arcane patterns, and a Transmutation spell to mend the Artifact.

Upon completion, a bright flash of light suddenly erupts from the Artifact.

Sans is caught off guard and drops it...

Despair flashes across his face... until he notices a small white dog in front of him.

It stands on its hind legs and transforms into a tall human wearing a red robe, who is now holding the Artifact.

The Artifact is no longer red.

Chapter Text

Still in shock, Sans looks at the figure. He can't read anything... No HP, ATK, DEF, SPD, INV... nothing. 'no emotions... no... soul?'

A couple minutes pass by, but the figure isn't moving. Sans is feeling too cautious to do anything... he's never encountered someone, or something, he could not read.

Sans' phone buzzes in his pocket, but he ignores it.

Sans cautiously moves forward and reaches for the Artifact, but finds himself back where he started when he gets near it.

Remaining cautious, Sans attempts to speak to the figure. "who... what... are you?"

The figure responds, it has the voice of an older gentleman.
"I am a magical construct. Keeper of the Artifact and personification of the Red Sage. There are some who call me... Tim."

"so, tim, what's your deal?"

Sans hesitates for a moment, "you gonna try keeping us down here?"

Tim responds promptly, it almost sounds reassuring, but the tone is difficult pin down.
"On the contrary. I was delivered to King Dreemurr as a means to save monster-kind."

Tim looks around briefly, while magic glyphs and patterns analyse the surroundings, then continues speaking. "It appears that quite a bit of time has passed inside the barrier. Records indicate multiple failures and anti-tampering protocols going haywire."

The construct bows slightly, "I apologize. It seems I was damaged at some point."

After shrugging, Sans says, "not your fault, but this complicates my plans..." then shakes his head gently.

Tim doesn't respond. Sans can almost see a hint of contemplation, but he is unsure.

A few uncomfortable moments pass, and Sans decides to ask a question. "can you tell me how the artifact works?"

Tim doesn't appear to respond at first... Being unable to read its body language makes Sans feel uneasy.

Unexpectedly, Tim lets go of the Artifact and it begins levitating. Soon after letting go, purple lines split the Artifact into six intricate parts. Each part fades into its own colour; Cyan, Orange, Blue, Purple, Green, and Yellow are all represented.

Tim explains, "The Artifact is Six made One held together by a Seventh. Each segment is capable of performing most tasks a magi of that Aspect can perform. Individually they are not capable of much, but together, and with Determination, they can perform feats that a normal group of magi cannot. As the keeper of the artifact I have limited access to these abilities, and as such I can advise in their usage. However, I can only allow those who have been authorized to use the Artifact. I cannot speak to you, beyond that, about how the Artifact works."

The lines fade and the Artifact turns into a white sphere again, Tim grabs hold of it again and speaks. "Analysis of the area outside the barrier shows anomalies; my information must be updated. Do you know if the one who bears the red SOUL is within the barrier?"

Sans almost begins to speak, but Tim interrupts. "Never mind, I have finally detected her within the barrier. It is imperative that I speak with her. Take me to her, please, and have her place her hand upon the Artifact."

Tim vanishes into the Artifact, which begins hovering again. Sans expected the Artifact to change back to red, but it's still white.

When Sans looks closely at the Artifact, he sees dim arcane patterns and runes shining through the almost opaque surface of the Artifact; they are flashing and moving in an mystifying way, like stars in the sky but sped up. Sans can't help but marvel at the complexity as he reaches out to grab the Artifact... but he gets over it fairly quickly. Holding it under one arm like a basketball -it's surprisingly light-, Sans checks his phone.

From: ALPHYS >
Sans, did you see that flash of
light?!

< To: ALPHYS
yea, the artifact is fixed now.

< To: ALPHYS
probably the barrier correcting
itself.

From: ALPHYS >
How did you fix it??? I thought
we were just gonna see how it
worked??

Sans doesn't reply. Instead he looks on the UnderNet for new users, to find Frisk. He chuckles softly when he sees the user "LgnDairyFlrtMstr" among the twelve new users. 'what a dork. that has to be the kid.'

Selecting "LgnDairyFlrtMstr" reveals a picture of Frisk looking at the camera, cross-eyed, and with their tongue slightly poking out to the side. They seem to be covered in tomato juice... It was added recently. In the background, though not entirely visible, is Undyne's house; there seems to be more light coming from the only visible window than normal. Sans sends them a message.

< To: LgnDairyFlrtMstr
hey, kiddo. the artifact wants to talk to
you.

From: LgnDairyFlrtMstr >
¿¿¿¿Qué????

From: LgnDairyFlrtMstr >
Is taht what hte flash was? I
thoght we blew up Undyne's house
... I was freeking out!

< To: LgnDairyFlrtMstr
you still over there?

From: LgnDairyFlrtMstr >
No, Undyne's house burned down
wile we were making spagheti.
I'm helping Tori move monsters.

< To: LgnDairyFlrtMstr
k, i'm headed over. see you in
snowdin.

From: LgnDairyFlrtMstr >
Kay.

 

Sans takes a moment to consider what Frisk said...
'odd... they're worried about it exploding, but casual about it burning down. why don't they go back in time to stop it...?'

He puts his phone away, picks up the x40 magnifying glass and puts it in his jacket pocket, then holds the Artifact in both hands. Lazily leaving his thoughts behind, Sans keeps note of the oddity before he begins making his way to Snowdin; It doesn't take long, thanks to the wonders of skeleton magic. Sans decides to snooze at his "sentry station" in the Snowdin forest.

 

As Frisk walks through the Snowdin forest, carrying a froggit, they spot Sans at his "not-a-hotdog-stand" sentry station. He's napping though, so they opt to not disturb him. They hurry to Waterfall to deposit their precious cargo. On their way back, they see Toriel holding two more froggits, and a moldsmall; a line of whimsuns are following her as well. Motes of fire float around the small entourage, emitting a faint heat.

Frisk strolls up next to her and asks "may I take a break?"

Toriel smiles gently and says, "Even better, I can get the rest little one. Thank you for your help."

Frisk nods and gives Toriel a thumbs up.

The two part ways as Frisk leaves to speak with Sans, and Toriel takes the small monsters to Waterfall. Frisk thanks their, albeit sparse, anime-princess-warrior training for being able to walk so far and carry so many monsters; which, contrary to what Frisk originally thought, actually do have weight... They make their way through Snowdin town, buy a Cinnamon bunny to eat, and go to Sans' "actually-a-hotdog-stand" sentry station.

He's still snoozing... Frisk balls up some snow and throws it at him.

Sans dodges the snowball, assesses the situation, then retaliates with his own snowball. For a moment, Sans thought Frisk was actually attacking him. They throw snow at each other for a few minutes. Frisk giggles when they get hit... which is every time Sans throws a snow ball; Frisk never lands a hit. Eventually Sans goes back behind his station to grab something.

In an amused tone, Sans says "alright kiddo, let's stop this one-sided snowball fight. we've used a lot of non-fried snow. I can't afford to waste any more of my product... anyhow, the artifact wants to talk to ya."

Sans pulls the Artifact from his stand and brings it over for Frisk to see.

At first, Frisk thinks it's just a large snowball that Sans is going to trick them with... but when he gets closer Frisk can faintly see runes and patterns glowing and moving under the surface.

Curious, Frisk asks "why did it turn white?"

Sans shrugs and holds it out for Frisk, then lets go. It begins to levitate.

Frisk is confused. "How... am I supposed to talk to it?"

Holding up a hand, Sans says "it said you've gotta put your hand on it."

Cautiously, Frisk steps closer and places a hand on the Artifact. They feel oddly...

A SAVE star appears within the Artifact.

 

* FILE SAVED
* FRISK FEELS REJUVENATED

"USER REGISTERED: FRISK | F | R/R/R | DT: 25% | MP: 54%"
"WELCOME, MAGI APPRENTICE."

"WARNING: CORRUPT MAGIC DETECTED! PURGING..."
"PURGE COMPLETE: DT: 10% | MP: 42%"

"CRITICAL ERROR: NO OTHER USERS DETECTED.
"EMERGENCY ACCESS GRANTED."

 

Frisk takes their hand off of the Artifact and steps back, confused and a bit dazed.

They try to keep their balance, but end up falling backwards onto their butt. "That... was sooo weird!"

Sans scoffs in a humoured manner. "how ya feeling? looks like it drained some magic."

"I'm OK? It... said something about 'corrupt magic' and 'purging.' Also... It said I'm a magi apprentice?"

"well, that isn't technically wrong. you're learning how to use magic. so... this thing can detect and fix corrupt magic, huh? i wonder..."

Sans trails off, and, after a few moments, Tim appears.

"I apologize for the wait, I needed to collect more magic. Apprentice Frisk, you may call me Tim; I am the keeper of the Artifact. Now that introductions have been completed... we must discuss the events that have occurred outside the barrier. Please, provide me with whatever information you can."

Frisk sighs... then asks, "can we go somewhere less cold first?"

Tim nods, but says "I regret to inform you that I cannot actually move the Artifact, only hide it within a sub-dimension."

Sans speaks up. "it isn't heavy, you could carry it easy. i'm gonna go do my usual thing."

Before he can leave, Frisk asks Sans "could you... stay with me? I'd hate to have to repeat everything it says... Actually, lets just get everyone together. That would be easier. Could you get Alphys and Asgore? I'll get Papyrus, Undyne, and Toriel."

Sans sighs "aw c'mon kid, you're making me do a lotta work..."

Then, with a wink, he continues "can i get something to eat first?"

Frisk nods and says, "of course. Say hi to Grillby for me!"

Sans leaves with a thumbs up, and Frisk picks up the Artifact... then realizes that they didn't tell Sans where everyone should meet...

Tim speaks up, "Frisk, when you are ready, place your hand on the Artifact again and think 'Ready.'"

Frisk nods, Tim vanishes, and they head to Grillby's to talk to Sans... but Sans isn't there.

'Well shoot...'

Frisk decides that Sans probably wont get anyone... so they look for signs of Flowey. Frisk decides to go to Chara's grave in the RUINS.
No one is there, but that's OK because they can still call for Flowey here.

"Flowey? I need to talk to you, please come out."

Several minutes pass, as Frisk occasionally calls out for Flowey... but he doesn't appear.
'Maybe Flowey would be more eager to speak to me if I had Chara's SOUL with me...? That'd be a good plan... if I new where Sans is.'

Frisk sighs, then turns to leave. In the next room, a familiar face is sprouting from the ground.

Annoyed, Flowey says,
"geez, took ya long enough. I don't go in there, you know because of the body. It's really gross... What do you want?"

Hesitant at first, Frisk asks, "can you get everyone to go to the barrier room? Like last time? Well, almost like last time. I'd prefer it if you didn't steal everyone's SOULs this time."

Flatly, Flowey says "No can do. They don't all trust you. You haven't even helped Alphys overcome her problems yet, so she won't come. Undyne still secretly loathes you for copying her, but she's also flattered... Not sure how you're gonna fix that, or if you need to... it's new to me. Then there is Sans... He's suspicious of you, and I don't really blame him. He's waiting for you in the Judgement hall."

After a pause, Flowey continues teasingly,
"Good job on getting Toriel to come out of the RUINs early though. You're pretty good... at almost dying."

Frisk puffs up their cheeks, crosses their arms, and turns their head with a "HMPF!"

Letting the air out of their mouth, Frisk continues, "well, thanks for the advice I guess... but, last time, Undyne didn't ask me to deliver her letter until after I defeated you and then reloaded. So how do you plan on getting that to work without all the fighting?"

Frisk's phone rings... They squint their eyes in Flowey's direction. "You already did something, didn't you."

With his usual wink, and stuck out tongue, Flowey says
"well, you could've just asked Undyne about the letter... but you're still an idiot, so I made a few calls," then burrows underground.

Frisk answers their CELL, it's Undyne.

"Hey...! Uh, this is Undyne..."

Papyrus can be faintly heard in the background, "(Shut up, Papyrus! This was YOUR idea!)"

She continues after yelling at Papyrus.

"HUMAN! You have to deliver something for me! Uh, please? I'm at Snowdin in front of Papyrus' See ya, punk!"

Undyne hangs up before Frisk can reply... Frisk walks back through the RUINS and to Papyrus and Sans' house in Snowdin.

As Frisk approaches the house, Papyrus waves eagerly.

Frisk approaches Undyne, who speaks hesitantly,
"Um, so, I have a favour to ask you. Uuuuh, I... I need you to deliver this letter. To Dr. Alphys."

Raising an eye brow, Frisk hides their secret knowledge and asks "why don't you give it to her yourself?"

"Huh!? Why don't I do it myself...?"

Undyne becomes visibly nervous... Frisk does their best to remain straight faced. "... um. W-well... I-it's kind of personal, but we're friends... kinda... I mean... like... that whole copy-cat thing you've got going on is weird... but... a-anyway... I'll t-tell you..."

Undyne switches to a false humorous face while she finishes speaking.
"Hotland SUUUUCKS!!! I don't wanna have to go over there!!! So here you go."

Undyne holds the letter out and Frisk sets the Artifact to the side and takes it...

Then Undyne adds in a friendly tone, with a hint of threatening intent:
"Oh, and if you read it... I'll KILL you. Thanks so much! You're the best!!"

Frisk nods, puts the letter in their pocket, picks up the Artifact, and heads to Riverperson to get a ride to Hotland.

 

When they approach the Lab, they think back to when this all first happened... The sounds of science can be heard despite Frisk not being in the Lab yet. Last time, the door was locked shut; this time it glides open. Hammers, a chain saw, screws dropping all over the floor... the occasional scream from a power tool screwing something in, all of these sounds and more echo through and around the Lab. Frisk wonders what Alphys is working on... then remembers that they had asked Alphys to work on a flying vehicle. They go to the second story to see her progress, but she isn't there; instead, a ladder leading out of a panel in the roof sits near Alphys' work bench.

Frisk is unable to go up the ladder. It's not made for a small human to climb safely. Frisk sets the Artifact to the side, pulls out the letter, and aims it like a throwing star. They toss the letter up to the roof, and their success is marked with a sound of surprise from Alphys.

"(Ouch!! Who did...?! N-nobody is... th-there? O-oh n-no, is that another letter...? I don't want to open it... C-can't I just toss it... somewhere...? N... no... I can't keep avoiding letters. I'll read this one. ...Um... I-it's shut k-kind of strongly, isn't it? Oh, wait a second... I can use the laser cutter...)"

The sound of an excessively powerful device being used to open a simple letter is heard from the roof... Footsteps can be heard, it seems like Alphys is looking around the edges of the Lab to see who threw the letter.

Unable to find the culprit, she shouts. "Hey, if this is a joke, it's not funny! ...(Guess I'll p-put this downstairs with the rest.)"

More footsteps are heard as Alphys makes her way back to, and down, the ladder.

When Alphys reaches the bottom and turns around, she Sees Frisk.

Alphys looks surprised. "... Oh My God? Did YOU write this letter? It wasn't signed, so, I had no idea who could have... Oh my god. Oh no. That's adorable... And I h-had no idea you, um, wrote that way! It's surprising, too... I mean... wait... y-you said... you said that you knew ALL m-my secrets?"

Alphys becomes very nervous "that... that doesn't mean... we um...?... uh heh..."

She trails off. Frisk shakes their head.

Alphys looks relieved, "Oh thank God! N-not that I d-don't appreciate... um... this? I j-just don't think that..."

More morosely, she continues "After all the gross stuff I did... I don't really deserve to be forgiven."

With a nervous smile, Alphys continues "Much less, um... This?"

A blank, surprised, look crosses her face as she continues. "And so passionately, too. ..."

She pulls herself together, and decides to go with it, "You know what, okay! I'll do it! Y-you said you already know what is going to happen, and so far you've been really helpful? And there was the whole thing with Mettaton that I need to make up for... So... Y-yeah! Let's go on a date!"

Frisk shrugs and picks up the Artifact.

Alphys shoos Frisk downstairs so she can get dressed, after a few moments she yells out, "Uhhh, sorry! I'm still getting dressed!"

Frisk decides to wait outside and sets the Artifact down, 'light or not it's still a weight.'

A couple minutes pass and Alphys makes her way outside.
"H-how do I look? My friend helped me pick out this dress. She's got a great sense of... Um, anyway! Let's do this thing!"

Frisk gives a thumbs up.

Alphys freaks out a little "H-h-hey, w-w-wait! Actually, we still can't start the date yet!!! Umm, I've gotta give you items to raise your affection statistic, first! That'll increase the chance of a successful outcome to the date! Right...? Anyway, d-don't worry! I'm prepared! I-I've been stockpiling gifts in anticipation for a date like this!"

Alphys accesses her dimensional box from her CELL, "F-first, I've got... Some metal armour polish!"

Frisk raises an eyebrow, looks over their very normal, not-metal, clothing and then looks back to Alphys.

Nervously, she replies "... Um, maybe you can't use that. But!!! I also brought some waterproof cream for your scales!"

She looks at the cream, realizing her error... "Your, uh... Scales... Uh, well, how about... This magical spear repair kit, that I... Um... Hey, let's forget about the items! Let's just start the date!"

Frisk gives another thumbs up.

Semi-excitedly, Alphys says "Yeah!!! Let's, uh, date!"

A few uncomfortable seconds pass. Frisk doesn't do anything, on purpose.

The anxiety and nervousness in Alphys slowly increases, until she speaks. "... uh... Do you... like... Anime...?"

Frisk replies casually, "yeah."

Excitedly, but still nervous, Alphys responds, "H-hey! Me too!!"

Another anxiety filled moment passes, and Alphys says,
"Hey! Let's!! Go somewhere!!!" But where's a good place to go on a date...? ... I've got it!!! Let's go to the garbage dump!!!"

With that exclamation, Alphys leads the way to the garbage dump.

Upon arriving, Alphys speaks up. She doesn't look nervous.
"Here we are! This is where Undyne and I come all the time... We find all sorts of great stuff here. Heh, she's really... Uh..."

Alphys tails off... Looking nervous once again.

After a moment, she spots Undyne. Pointing to her, Alphys says,
"Oh no. That's here over there. I c-can't let her see me on a date with you!"

Teasingly, Frisk asks "Why?"

Nervously, Alphys responds "Why...? Because, uh... Well... Oh no, here she comes!!"

Alphys hides behind a trash can before Undyne approaches.

Wearing nice, date-type clothing, Undyne says "Hey!! There you are!! I, uh, realized, if you deliver that thing... It might be a bad idea."

Undyne puts on a fiercely determined, but secretly very nervous smile, and continues. "So I'm gonna do it!!! Give it to me!!!"

Frisk replies in a subtly mischievous tone, "I don't have it anymore."

Surprised and a little upset, Undyne responds "Huh?! You don't have it?! Ngggaaahhh!! Have you at least seen her?!"

Frisk nods.

Looking a bit more relieved, Undyne says "Yes? So she's somewhere around here... Thanks. I'll keep looking."

Undyne leaves, and, after she is gone, Alphys comes out from behind the trash can. "Oh my god... W... well, I guess it's obvious, huh? I... uh... I really like her. I mean, more than I like other people! I'm sorry. I j-just figured, y-you know... It'd be f-fun to go on like, a cute, kind of... Pretend date with you? T-to make you feel better? ... Well, it sounds even worse when I put it like that."

Looking downcast now, Alphys continues "I'm sorry. I messed up again."

Nervously smiling, Alphys says "Undyne's the person I. Um... really want to go on a date with."

Frisk nods knowingly.

Alphys laughs nervously "Heh... R-right... so... what all do you know about? Do... Undyne and I... uh...?"

With a straight, unreadable face, Frisk says "I'm not gonna spoil it, you've gotta figure it out yourself."

Uncertain and nervous, Alphys says "There's no way... I mean... She's way out of my league. She's so confident... And strong... And funny..."

As Alphys continues speaking, she's sad. "And I'm just a nobody. A fraud. I'm the royal scientist, but... All I've ever done is hurt people."

With a sad and nervous smile, she says "I've told her so many lies, she thinks I'm... She thinks I'm a lot cooler than I actually am."

Frisk interrupts, with a smile. "You should just tell her the truth."

Surprised and still nervous, Alphys says
"The truth...? But if I tell her that, she'll hate me. Isn't it better this way? To live a lie where both people are happy..."

Frisk crosses their arms and raises an eye brow, it clearly sends the message: "Really?"

Alphys sighs, and remarks sadly "If I tell the truth, neither of us will be happy... I mean... they say 'be yourself,' but I don't really like who 'myself' is. I'd rather be whatever makes people like me. Eheheh... ...No, you're right."

Putting on a nervously sad smile, Alphys continues.
"Every day I'm scared... Scared what will happen if people learn the truth on their own. They'll all get hurt because of me..."

Frantic, Alphys asks "But how can I tell UNDYNE the tr... truth?"

She returns to her sad expression, and says "I d-don't have the confidence..."

Frisk interrupts her, hoping to speed things along. "Let's Roleplay it."

Alphys is unsure what to think at first, but warms up to the idea. She responds. "R... roleplay? ... That actually sounds kind of fun!"

Nervously excited, Alphys asks "OK, which one of us will be Undyne?"

Frisk points to themself.

Slightly embarrassed, Alphys replies "Oh. Right. Obviously. Ehehe. Ahem. H-hi Undyne... H-how are you doing today?"

Putting on their "best" Undyne impression, Frisk summons a spear, points it at Alphys, and says "YOur cute," then puts on a goofy smile.

Surprised, but happy, Alphys says, "th... thanks! You say that to me a lot, and I never know what to say!! But I know, you just, mean it platonically, because we're just friends! Eheheh!!!"

Continuing less enthusiastically, Alphys says, "...Uhhh, so I'd like to, um, talk to you about something."

Opting out of being overly mischievous, Frisk asks "What is it, Alphys?" in their best Undyne voice.

To which Alphys replies, nervously, "Umm, you see... I... I... I... I h-haven't been exactly truthful w-w-with you... Y... you see, I... I..."

She throws her insecurity to the side and almost shouts "Oh, forget it! Undyne!! I... I want to tell you how I feel! Y-you're so brave, a-and s-strong... A-and nice... Y-you always listen t-to me when I talk about n-n-nerdy stuff... Y-you always d-d-do your best to make me f-f-feel special... L-like t-telling me that y-you'll b-beat up anyone that g-gets in my way..."

Alphys gets a little too into the roleplay as she continues.
"UNDYNE!!! I CAN'T TAKE THIS ANY LONGER!!! I'M MADLY IN LOVE WITH YOU!!! HOLD ME, UNDYNE!! HOLD ME!!!"

Right on cue, Undyne shows up. "WHAT did you just say?"

Frisk holds back the desire to be snarky.

Alphys is extremely nervous as she replies "U... Undyne! I... was... just..."

Undyne notices Alphys' outfit. "Hey, woah, wait a second! Your outfit's really cute! What's the occasion?"

She spots Frisk, nervously trying to keep a straight face while tossing a purple magic spear to the side.

With an annoyed, fake smile, Undyne continues. "... Wait a second. Are you two... On a date? You little punk. Just when I decided that you're just copying me because of how cool I am... you..."

Undyne puts on a clearly angry face.
"YOU TRY TO STEAL MY GIRL?!?! NGAAAAAAAAHHH!!!! I'M GONNA SUPLEX YOU SO HARD, PUNK, IT'LL BREAK THE BARRIER!!!"

Frisk smiles nervously and steps back a little when Undyne starts approaching, 'this is new...'

They'd rather avoid having to do this all over again, so Frisk hesitantly braces for a fight.

Fortunately, however, before Undyne gets too close, Alphys speaks up.

A little scared, kinda touched, and as nervous as always, Alphys says, "W-WE AREN'T ON A D-DATE!!... I mean, we were, but.... I mean, actually we were only romantically roleplaying as you! Frisk was... j-just t-trying to help me be more c-confident. S-s-so... so that I could finally tell you... the truth... b-because... I've been lying to you!"

Frisk opts to not stoke the fires and just keeps their mouth shut. The rest will work itself out naturally.

'Some things just can't be changed, no matter how hard you try.'

Undyne is taken by surprise, she turns to Alphys and asks, "WHAT??? ABOUT WHAT???"

A little more nervous, Alphys replies, "About... well... Everything!"

Alphys gets a little closer as she continues.
"I told you that seaweed was like... scientifically important... Really, I just use it to make ice cream!"

She steps forward a tad closer. "And those human history books I keep reading... Those are just dorky comic books!"

Closer... "And the history movies... those... Those are just, uh, anime! They aren't real!"

She's standing very close to Undyne now.
"And that time I told you I was busy with work on the phone... I... Was just eating frozen yogurt in my pajamas! That time I..."

Undyne cuts in, "Alphys." 

But Alphys continues, looking down sadly, "I... I just wanted to impress you! I just wanted you to think I was smart and cool. That I wasn't some... nerdy loser."

Undyne speaks again, squats a bit and puts her hand on Alphys' head; gently rubbing back and forth in a comforting manner. "Alphys."

Alphys cuts in and says "Undyne, I... I really think you're neat, OK..."

Kneeling now, wrapping Alphys in a pseudo-hug and rubbing her back gently, Undyne speaks again. "Alphys. Shhhh. Shhhhh."

Undyne picks up her unwitting victim. Alphys is surprised, and Frisk is doing their best not to snicker.

With a little hop, Undyne tosses Alphys up into the air an causing her to arc widely. Due to the wonders of magic, probably Sans' doing, a basketball hoop appears, and the lid on the trash can slides open to accept its newest resident.

Intensely, Undyne declares, "Alphys! I... think you're really neat, too. I guess. But, you've gotta realize... Most of what you said really doesn't matter to me. I don't care if you're watching kid cartoons or reading books. To me. ALL of that stuff is just NERDY CRAP! What I like about you is that you're PASSIONATE! You're ANALYTICAL!! It doesn't matter what it is! YOU CARE ABOUT IT!! 100-PERCENT!! AT MAXIMUM POWER!!! ... so, you don't have to lie to me."

She looks away for a moment, but continues "I don't want you to have to lie to anyone anymore. Alphys... I want to help you become happy with who you are! And I know just the training you need to do that!"

Alphys nervously stands in the trash can, her legs make holes in the bottom and her tail sticks out from a slot in the back while she peeks out from under the lid. "Undyne... You... Y-you're gonna train me...?"

Undyne responds in a humoured tone, "Pffft, what? ME?"

Papyrus rises from the heaps of garbage, in his "Jogboy" outfit, in a heroic pose that screams "Look at the item I just got!"

Continuing where she left off, Undyne says flatly, "Nah, I'm gonna get Papyrus do it."

Alphys is shocked, and a little terrified.

Jumping over a small heap of trash, Papyrus announces,
"GET THOSE BONES SHAKIN'!!! IT'S TIME TO JOG 100 LAPS. HOOTING ABOUT HOW GREAT WE ARE!!!"

Calmly, Undyne says, "ready? I'm about to start the timer!"

Worried, but wanting to improve herself, Alphys says "U-Undyne... I'll do my best...!"

The two leave, it's just Frisk and Undyne now. Frisk puts on a subtle nervous smile.

Undyne begins to freak out.
"OH MY GOD!!! She was kidding, right!? Those cartoons... those comics... Those are still REAL, right!? ANIME'S REAL, RIGHT?!?!"

Frisk is faced with a dilemma... On one hand... Anime is not real, but on the other there are a lot of anime-like things in the world.

They decide to say... "Real life is based on anime, and horror movies. On one hand, gigantic swords are... not realistic, for humans without magic... but on the other hand, I am training to be a 'Magical-Warrior-Princess' so..."

Relieved, Undyne says "HA HA HA!!! I KNEW IT!!! GIGANTIC MAGIC SWORDS!!! MAGICAL PRINCESSES! HERE I COME!!!..."

She stops being overly excited... and remembers her mistake. "Uhh, thanks for taking care of Alphys. I-... I'm sorry I said all that stuff. I mean, you were impersonating me and all... but I overreacted. Anyway... I didn't get to say what I wanted to, but... Things seem like they're going to get better for her. Thanks, Frisk... I uh... I gotta catch up with them. Later!"

Frisk and Undyne wave goodbye to each other as she leaves, then Frisk begins to make their way back to Hotland.

 

Right on cue, as Frisk is about to leave the dump, Papyrus calls...? No, it's Flowey using Papyrus' cell phone?

"Howdy Frisk, last time I pretended to be Papyrus... But I don't really see the point now. I got Alphys to go to her Lab, it's the last piece of the puzzle for her. DON'T MESS IT UP. See you in the barrier chamber..."

He hangs up before Frisk can say anything.

'All that's left now, is to go to the Lab...'

Frisk walks out of the dump and to Riverperson for a ride to Hotland. Once there, they make their way to the Lab and down into the True Lab. The power was shut off... again. Frisk gets a bag of Popato Chisps and walks through the True Lab to get the keys, already knowing where each one is. They play around with the amalgamates, even though they're acting rather hangry, and share their popato chisps with them. Frisk makes sure to remind the amalgamates of who they are...

Frisk remembers that they forgot to get the hush puppy when Endogeny shows up... 'Oh well.'

They get the massive blob of dogs to do tricks and run around, and eventually tire out.

Easily avoiding oncoming bullets, Frisk eventually gets the power running again.

Amalgamates surround Frisk, but Alphys shows up right on time. "Hey! Stop!!!"

She rushes up to Frisk, and the amalgamates part to the side. "I got you guys some food, okay!?"

Hearing those wonderful words, the amalgamates leave.

Alphys is slightly embarrassed "Sorry about that..."

Frisk replies "They get get upset when they don't get fed on time, right? Probably smelled the popato chisps I have."

They eat the last popato chisp to make their point.

Staring at Frisk blankly, Alphys asks "Frisk... you said you know everything that's going to happen in the Underground, right?"

Frisk nods.

Alphys looks anxious for a moment, but works up the courage to ask "will everything be okay?"

Unable to completely remember what happened before the reset, Frisk says, "if everything was OK, I wouldn't be back... would I? If you mean telling everyone about the amalgamates, it'll be fine. Not at first, but in time. The families will be happy."

Alphys considers the information for a few seconds.

Frisk walks up and pats Alphys on the back.
"Don't worry Alphys, it'll be scary to tell the truth... but you've gotta do it. Your friends will be there to support you."

Nervous, but happy, Alphys responds "Thanks, Frisk, f-for helping... You've... done so much. All we've done so far is attack you..."

With a smirk, Frisk says, "that isn't true at all! This has been great 'magical-warrior-princess' training. And I learned about a new type of food too! ...Also, once we're out of the Underground, I won't know what will happen. Even now, some of this is new territory... so I'll need help too."

Determined and happy, Alphys says "you can count on me, Frisk! I-I'll be there for you if you need help."

Frisk gives a small smile in reply.

The amalgamates show up behind Alphys, and she turns around. Scared, nervous, but happy, she says,
"come on, guys. It's time for everyone to go home."

With the amalgamates in tow, Alphys leaves the True Lab. Frisk goes back to the elevator and goes up to New Home.

There wasn't a phone call this time.

They walk down the lonely grey path overlooking the crowded New Home buildings, and approach the Judgement Hall... It's just as long as it was before. Sunlight filters in through the stained glass windows, this part of the Underground is more above ground than the rest. The large pillars on both sides of the hall are just as menacing as before, which is to say not at all. The orange and gold checkered floor is spotless... Frisk takes a moment to SAVE.

* FILE SAVED.
* FRISK FEELS REJUVENATED.

They walk down the hall, and Sans stops them mid way.

It is hard to tell that it's Sans speaking. Frisk doesn't actually hear anyone.

"You know, normally I'd talk about how this is the end of your journey, the king, EXP, LV... But you already know all that, don't you?"

Frisk nods.

"Well... I've got a question for you, Frisk... How many times have you RESET?"

Taken by surprise, Frisk becomes nervous. They hold up a single finger.

"Only once, huh? So then tell me... if you've only reset once, how do you know everything that's gonna happen? How do you know that you can't avoid catching Undyne's house on fire when you hang out with her? How do you perfectly dodge every attack that comes your way, as if through muscle memory?"

Sad, but understanding of his scepticism, Frisk meekly replies "My first time down here, I tried to make everything end perfectly... I tried over and over to keep her house from burning down, but some things... you just... can't... change."

Sans appears somewhat more at ease hearing those last words, Frisk continues speaking.

"I've died down here so many times, it's all blended together. I tried almost everything to get the best ending possible for everyone... but I failed. There are people I can't save, no matter what I do... but I've accepted that."

He appears a bit concerned over the first part of what Frisk said, but the rest is... acceptable. Frisk continues speaking.

"Life isn't always fair. I've seen an incredibly powerful being take on its own form and wipe out all of reality... but even that much power wasn't enough to make its form permanent. So, how could I possibly do better? I can't... Not here. I need to leave the barrier to save them. RESETING... was a last resort to save everyone."

Sans contemplates the information... he replies, less serious and harsh. "i see. well, whatever you have planned, we're all counting on you frisk. good luck... but don't go thinkin' that i'm gonna blindly trust you. super secret passphrase or not, you've gotta earn my trust... and you have... but now you've gotta maintain that trust."

He winks and says "i'm beat... i'm gonna go get some pho-king noodles," then vanishes.

Frisk continues down the hallway to the entrance of the throne room... and they suddenly remember that they forgot to pick up the Artifact. It's all the way back in Hotland in front of the Lab... 'Maybe Papyrus can get it for me?'

Frisk sends Papyrus a text message.

< To: CoolSkeleton95
Hey, Papyrus... Could u please
get hte Artifact? I left it at the
Lab in Hotland on acident. I'm
going to see Asgore.

From: CoolSkeleton95 >
FUNNY YOU SHOULD ASK! I
JUST SO HAPPEN TO BE GOING
OVER THERE RIGHT NOW! I'LL
BRING IT FOR YOU, BUT YOU
SHOULD REALLY BE MORE
CAREFUL ABOUT REMEMBERING
WHERE YOU LEAVE LEGENDARY
ARTIFACTS! WHAT IF SOMEONE
TRIPS ON IT?

< To: CoolSkeleton95
Thanks Papyrus, ur the best!

From: CoolSkeleton95 >
I TRIPPED ON IT... BUT THAT
IS ENTIRELY MY FAULT! I
SHOULDN'T HAVE BEEN
LOOKING AT MY PHONE AND
WALKING! I AM GOING TO
GO NOW. SEE YOU LATER!

< To: CoolSkeleton95
See u later Papyrus.

 

'Crisis averted...? Asriel... Flowey is probably gonna give me an ear full...'

Frisk hesitates for a moment before entering the Throne room... but they can't avoid it for long.

After approaching, Frisk calls out. "Asgore?"

He stops his nonsensical humming and singing and responds,
"oh? Is someone there? Just a moment! I have almost finished watering these flowers."

The birds are singing, the flowers are in full bloom... If it weren't for the situation, this would be a lovely room.

As he finishes, Asgore says "... Here we are!" Then turns around.

He doesn't see Frisk, at first. "Howdy! How can I..."

Terrified and sad... Asgore steps back in surprise. "Oh... I so badly want to say, 'would you like a cup of tea?' But... You know how it is."

Asgore turns away and walks for a moment... "Nice day today, huh?"

He's stalling... and Frisk knows there's nothing they can say to stop him. That's Toriel's job. It always has been, but she didn't know it.

Continuing, he says "Birds are singing, flowers are blooming... Perfect weather for a game of catch."

Frisk... has an idea...

* Wanting to help Asgore overcome his problems... fills Frisk with Determination.

 

Carefully visualizing, with harmless intent, Frisk wills a mote of fire into existence above their hands... it's small, and flickering...

They focus.

* The desire to remind Asgore of his true self... fills Frisk with Determination!

 

Frisk throws caution to the wind... With Bravery they put everything they can into their pathetic little fire, and it bursts into a wild flaming ball. They manage to get it under control, with some effort. It's warm to the touch, but not too warm, and perfect for a game of catch.

Putting on their best smile, Frisk says "let's play catch, just like you used to do with Asriel!"

They hold the Fireball out for Asgore to take.

Asgore is taken by surprise... his face grows grim, and sad. He looks to his feet... unable to look at such a cute, and innocent, face.

The memories that constantly haunt him at night flood through his mind.

He's trying his best not to cry now. "I... cannot. You know what we must do. When you are ready, come into the next room."

Frisk wordlessly follows along, their mood clearly painted on their face. They're very sad.

In the next room, Frisk offers the fireball again with a hopeful, but sad, face.

Asgore doesn't respond, he just looks away. He can't hold his tears back any longer... He continues walking down the hall. Frisk follows.

When he approaches the door, he does his best to ask "Are you ready? If you are not, I understand. I am not ready either."

He enters the next room without allowing Frisk to reply, and manages to get his tears under control. Frisk follows.

In the next room... The barrier looms. It's no longer pulsing, instead, it's just white. It takes Asgore by surprise for a moment.

Frisk takes the opportunity to speak. "I can open the barrier. Alone. You don't have to kill me again for that to happen..."

Asgore reluctantly turns around to face Frisk...

Frisk holds out the fireball... their face pleading. "So, how about that game of catch?"

Looking up to see them, Asgore is unable to stop a tear from flowing down his face. His voice is almost a whisper.
"All this time, all this bloodshed... You... don't know what I have done. What I am..."

Still hopeful, Frisk says "I know that you killed the six human children who fell down here..."

Asgore winces at the mention of his past deeds... Frisk continues. "But I also know that you were abandoned when you needed someone the most. That all this time, you've had the weight of your kingdom's hopes on your shoulders... while grieving for your lost children."

His shoulders, and SOUL, start to feel heavy as Frisk continues speaking... "You were irrational, and angry... Unable to let go of them, and move on, you distanced yourself. At first it must have been hard, but... as you gained LV... it became easier to kill innocent children. It became easier to kill someone else's Asriel... Someone else's Chara..."

Unable to keep his emotions in check any more, Asgore's face twists in pain and regret as tears begin flowing from his eyes freely. He drops to a knee... but he doesn't make a sound as Frisk continues speaking.

"I know that you don't want power. I know that you don't want to hurt anyone... And I know you can change, if you just try."

Crying but still not making a sound, Asgore contemplates the information. Fighting within himself. Frisk is fighting him with words, some of them his own thoughts, instead of weapons.

"So... how about a game of catch? Then, I can introduce you to my parents later... On the Surface."

Frisk worries that they may have broken him..."I know it probably doesn't mean much... but I forgive you. You know, for killing me all those times... Last time, you asked me to be the ambassador for monsters... and I still am... if you let me be... And... If I made a mistake and can't leave, I would rather stay here and suffer than hurt you."

Ten anxiety filled and worrisome seconds pass by... But Asgore has yet to respond.

Frisk decides that they really messed up and goes to LOAD, but, right before they do...

Asgore speaks. "You would rather stay here and suffer... than kill me and live happily on the surface with your family...? After everything... even killing you... You forgive me?... Human... I... do not deserve such kindness... I do not know if what you said is true... that you can open the barrier... but... I am really tired of all of this. A game of catch sounds wonderful... young one."

Looking up to Frisk, Asgore puts on a sad smile across his tear-streaked face. "And if... you cannot really open the barrier... that would be alright. If you are willing to stay, I promise you... for as long as you remain here... My wife and I will do our best to take care of you."

He stands up and walks closer to Frisk, then kneels and embraces them. "I am... so sorry."

Frisk hugs the giant, fluffy, somewhat soggy, boss monster back with one arm...

They would use both hands, but they don't want to waste all the magic and determination that they put into making the fireball.

Asgore stands up and says, "Perhaps... the throne room would be better for a game of catch?"

Frisk nods, with a smile on their face, and follows Asgore to the throne room.

Once there, Asgore moves the throne to the side, and they toss the magical fireball back and forth.

At first, Frisk isn't able to catch the fireball... but Asgore teaches them.

"The secret to catching a fireball, is Kindness."

Patiently demonstrating, Asgore guides Frisk in catching a new fireball... since Frisk's went out on the first failed catch.

Eventually, Frisk is able to catch the fireball with relative ease.

After a few tosses, Asgore says,
"I am surprised you can use magic, young one... I was under the impression that humans lost their magic."

Frisk nods and replies, "we did. The barrier took it all from the surface, but inside the barrier it's still here. The first time I went through the Underground, and opened the barrier, I started to learn how to use magic... but something bad happened and I had to start over... So here we are... back in the Underground... so I can try to keep monsters and humans from being killed by something that might be unstoppable."

Asgore contemplates the information while continuing to toss the fireball.
"So... we got out... just to all die? What is this creature you speak of?"

Frisk stops for a moment and says "when everyone else gets here I'll explain everything," then continues tossing the fireball.

Content enough with the answer, Asgore decides not to press further and just enjoy the moment.

Worried that, at any second, everything will go wrong, Frisk decides to pause the game of catch for a moment and SAVE.

Asgore takes it as an opportunity to make tea.

 

* Happy that they finally found what to say to stop Asgore without fighting... fills Frisk with Determination.

* FILE SAVED.
* FRISK FEELS REJUVENATED.

Chapter Text

Frisk and Asgore returned to playing catch shortly after finishing some tea... it was lovely.

After about a minute, Toriel enters the throne room quickly, thinking the worst, but sees the display. She's still very upset at Asgore for his past actions, but she's happy to see that Frisk is not harmed. Watching the scene calms her down. She avoids bringing attention to herself, lest the two stop... but everyone else begins to arrive shortly after she does. Frisk stops the game of catch upon their arrival.

Papyrus is carrying the Artifact, and has Sans in tow.

Holding the Artifact for Frisk to take, Papyrus says,
"I HAVE BROUGHT THE ARTIFACT AS YOU REQUESTED!! PLEASE BE MORE CAREFUL WITH IT..."

Frisk reaches out and takes the Artifact from Papyrus, then thanks him in a quiet and embarrassed voice.

Alphys and Undyne arrive shortly after Papyrus and Sans. Alphys is holding notes, probably for the vehicle, and Undyne is standing around.

Undyne is the first to ask the question on almost everyone's mind... "Uh... why are we all here, Papyrus?"

To which he replies jubilantly, "I WAS TOLD BY A VERY TRUSTWORTHY SOURCE THAT IT WAS VERY IMPORTANT THAT WE ALL BE HERE!"

Not entirely convinced she asks, "right... So who was this 'trustworthy source?'"

In his usual tone, Papyrus exclaims, "A SMALL YELLOW FLOWER! FLOWERY!"

Alphys is very scared by that proclamation... but Frisk steps in,
"Flowey is OK, Alphys... I needed you all to be here so for an important conversation... 'cause I don't want to repeat what they say."

Though a bit more at ease, Alphys is still worried.

Frisk takes the Artifact to the center of the room, places a hand on it, and thinks 'Ready.'

The Artifact begins to float, and Tim appears in the room. Asgore, Toriel, Alphys, and Undyne take a step back in surprise.

"Greetings, I am Tim. A magical construct and the Keeper of the Artifact."

Tim turns to Asgore and then to Toriel, saying "you must be quite confused, please, allow me to explain."

Asgore and Toriel nod, almost in unison.

"Thank you. As you know, this Artifact was delivered and given to you as a gift... it is also what created the barrier. It was intended to keep you safe, but, at some point, a few of the microscopic arcane runes and circles were damaged... It has now been repaired, by an unexpected individual might I add, and I am able to assist you now. Before I go any further or am able to answer any questions, it is imperative that Frisk provides information to me about what happened outside the barrier."

Several of the monsters present look anxious, like they have questions they want to ask...

Frisk explains as best they can about what has happened... but when they get to what occurred right before the RESET, they have difficulty remembering. While attempting to remember, Frisk begins to feel anxious and scared.

Alphys recognizes the hesitation, and fills in most of the missing details for them.

Unwilling to have any missing details, however, Tim asks, "Frisk, it appears you may be suffering from stress induced memory loss. May I view your memories? You will not experience them a second time."

Frisk hesitates for a moment, but nods in affirmation.

Tim gestures to the Artifact. "Hold the artifact. I recommend you sit in a meditative pose."

Doing as instructed, Frisk takes the Artifact in both hands and sits with their legs crossed. With the Artifact in their lap, Frisk wraps their arms underneath it.

Sans, Asgore, and Undyne prepare subtly, in case it's a ruse set by the humans from before the war.

Tim speaks, in his usual even tone. "Now Frisk, relax, and clear your mind."

Frisk nods, and relaxes... Not long after, the Artifact begins glowing Yellow and Frisk's head slowly slumps downward.

Purple streaks begin appearing, followed by flashes of green and blue.

The glowing fades after several seconds, and Frisk lifts their head back up. "That felt funny, get what you needed?"

"Yes, thank you. The situation is more dire than I originally determined. Not only has magic been removed from the world, but technology has mostly been lost as well. The worst issue is that the Gibbering Horror has manifested within this reality... That is going to be a mess to clean up. I also noticed a third red SOUL... I do not know if it will be problematic, but normally there are only two red SOULs alive at any point in time."

Frisk is a bit confused. "Three red SOULs? I know about me... the SOUL Sans has... Oh! Wait, I kinda remember a third? I can't remember their name... Uh... C... U... 2...? No... that can't be right... Cu... sto... s...? Custos?"

With a smirk, Sans corrects Frisk. "cu-270/s. it doesn't have a name, 'specially not from a dead language."

Tim raises an eye brow.
"The SOUL Sans has is not a red SOUL, it is HOLLOW. I am referring to you, the young boy without a name, and the red sage."

More confused, Frisk asks "The red sage? I thought they died? Like... 50-ish years ago?"

"Yes, he did... But no, he didn't. His continued existence has been kept a secret. He is too weak to perform any of his previous duties. He has been waiting for the next red SOUL, so he can pass on his knowledge. Effectively, he is dead."

Still confused Frisk asks, "Why did he go into hiding?"

Alphys also speaks up, asking "Also, why c-can't he just write it down? N-n-not that I'm up-upset that he's a-alive! B-but... It just seems so... sad to live only to p-pass on knowledge..."

Tim speaks briefly, "People could not understand why he could not lead them, and they would not relent in their attempts to persuade him. The knowledge can not be passed down through... standard methods."

Alphys is a bit confused still... but she refrains from asking more questions.

Frisk is satisfied with the answers, but has another question. "Now that the barrier is working properly, is time also moving normally?"

"On the contrary. Every second here is one attosecond on the Surface. And, in anticipation of your next question, it is due to how time works. We cannot stop time and continue to operate, but we can operate within such a small time-frame that time might as well be halted."

Frisk, though satisfied with the answers, has more questions... but they feel that they won't understand the answers.

Toriel begins speaking, but Asgore unintentionally interrupts. "Does the Artifact still contain the archives?"

"You have an exceptional memory, King Asgore. Yes, encoded within the Artifact are the archives of, now lost, information. Frisk, I suggest starting with the basics of operation. To access the archives you simply need to cover your hand in purple magic, place it upon the Artifact, and say 'directory' out loud or in your mind. While you familiarize yourself with the Artifact's operation, Frisk, I need to speak to the royal family in the next room."

Frisk nods.

Asgore and Toriel look to eachother, hesitantly, and then back to Tim... They nod, and follow Tim to the next room.

 

Curious about what information they'll find, Frisk follows the steps provided. It's a bit difficult for them to cover their hand in Purple magic, but they manage to do it after a few tries and a couple tips from Alphys. After following the other steps, the purple magic is removed from Frisk's hand and turns into a display. Alphys steps closer to view the entries on the screen. She is immediately drawn to "TECHNOLOGY."

Before Frisk can do anything, however, a tutorial starts. They begin learning how to navigate the archives, It's a lot simpler than they thought it'd be.

After a couple minutes, Frisk is free of the tutorial and perusing the archives... But they're unable to understand most of what the entries say... Some are even in other languages.

Curious, Alphys asks, "Frisk, uh... would... i-is there anything on flying vehicles, by chance?"

Frisk uses the very convenient search function, and finds a large section dedicated to aircraft. They tell Alphys how to scroll through the menus, but she's unable to interact with the screen... After some browsing, Frisk discovers that only people granted access can use it. So they look to see how to grant Alphys access...

Granting Alphys access is also easier than Frisk thought it'd be. Frisk contemplates this... then finally realizes the lack of a third party commenting about it in their mind.

Without Chara attached to their SOUL, their mind is much quieter; they're OK with it, but they got used to that, sometimes, helpful voice.
'They'd probably say something like... "The Artifact's like a Genie's lamp, just rub it and make a wish... Convenient!"'

Frisk begins to wonder why Chara went silent after Asriel broke the barrier... but they put it aside and return to the present.

In as much of an authoritative voice as Frisk can muster, they say "Grant Alphys Scholar Access."

A screen with a hand print appears and instructs Alphys to place their hand on it. She does so, and purple lines shoot out around her hand, then around the rest of her body, before returning to the menu.

The menu now reads "Scholar Access Granted. Greetings Scholar Alphys, you have access to the Archives. What is your query?"

Frisk leaves Alphys alone with the Artifact for a while and heads over to Sans and Papyrus.

In his usual laid-back tone, Sans asks "'sup kiddo?"

Shrugging, Frisk says "not much," but then gets an idea... With a subtle, mischievous, smile and slightly... squinted eyes, Frisk asks
"so... how were your Pho-king noodles?"

Sans' face lights up slightly as Papyrus' eyes go wide in shock, a worried sound comes from Alphys' direction, and the two yell out "FRISK!!!!"

Innocently, Frisk responds, "what?"

Alphys and Papyrus look like they are nervously contemplating giving an answer, but Alphys decides to go back to browsing the nearly endless depths of knowledge in the archive, and Papyrus opts to pretend he didn't hear anything in the first place.

Undyne decides to change the topic, "hey punk, I've got an idea! Let's see who can make the BEST magic spear!!"

Frisk contemplates this for a moment...

They are willing, but purple magic is hard to deal with... So they say, "only if you teach me how to use cyan magic!"

Undyne isn't sure, though. "I dunno punk... I've never taught anyone else how to use magic, just... sorta how to use it better."

Before Frisk can protest, however, Asgore, Toriel, and Tim return from the other room. Tim notices Alphys using the Artifact.

Toriel speaks first, calmly but authoritatively, "Frisk... I will be appointing you as the Ambassador for monsters again, should you accept. Alphys, I see that you have already been granted rights to the Artifact... Tim is going to mark several important articles, I request that you study these articles and begin working on the objects they pertain to as soon as possible... Your... unethical past actions aside. Everyone else... We are going to make preparations to leave the Underground en masse. It has been found that doing so is our best option, and will increase our chances of survival... Asgore..."

Interrupts. He speaks sullenly, but proudly; his deep voice demands everyone's attention. "We have been informed that in order to seal the... Gibbering Horror... someone must take the barrier segments from the artifact, and use them... thereby also trapping themselves within. Fortunately, however, time can be slowed to such an extent that, by the time those outside the barrier are ready to kill the horror, almost no time will have passed within the barrier. The opposite of how it currently operates... With that being said, this person will also be the first line of defence when the barrier falls... And so, I have decided to take on this responsibility. I was... going to withhold this information, but I was convinced to do otherwise."

Asgore sheepishly looks over to Toriel, then back at the room.

The room is filled with a grim silence.

Alphys, Undyne, and Papyrus begin to speak, but Asgore raises his hand and says, "there is no turning back."

Tim approaches the Artifact, gestures to it questioningly while looking at Alphys, and she moves aside. Tim begins to quickly mark several entries, far faster than Alphys can read, and then gestures to Alphys indicating she may resume. He saved her spot for her, fortunately.

Alphys finishes the article she was reading, dismisses the directory, and says "p-perhaps it would be better if I took this to the Lab and studied there, I'd be able to focus more."

Frisk replies. "That sounds like a good idea, I'll go with."

But nobody moves. The shock from Asgore's announcement is still fresh in their minds...

Toriel says, "I am leaving now, everyone that has not been assigned a task, follow me and help prepare for our departure."

Papyrus has already gotten past the grim announcement, "AS YOU COMMAND, MY QUEEN!"

Sans shrugs, "guess i really don't have anything better to do anyway," then goes into the next room.

Undyne salutes and follows the Queen with Papyrus. Asgore follows behind slowly.

Tim returns into the Artifact and Frisk picks it up, then follows Alphys back to the Lab.

Flowey decides to stay for a while. Contemplating the announcement, he doesn't feel one way or the other about it... but he thinks there might be a better option.

 

Frisk, being unable to assist with the preparations, and not understanding any of the science-y stuff Alphys is doing, decides to hang out with the monster children.

They go to Snowdin to see how Monster Kid is doing... 'I wonder what Monster Kid's name is... I should ask.'

Wandering around Snowdin Town, Frisk is unable to find Monster Kid anywhere... They keep searching.

'It looks like some of the other kids are searching for something, so maybe Monster Kid is too?'

Eventually Frisk finds a suspiciously shaped snow poff... with the spikes on Monster Kid's head poking out of it.

Frisk puts their frying pan away, and pulls out their Stick from Box B... then pokes the snow poff.

The muffled voice of a monster is heard from within. "Awww man! I can't believe you found me so fast!"

Monster kid stands up from the snow poff,
"Oh It's you! Yo, I didn't know you joined... that's awesome! We're gonna start a different game, wanna join?"

Monster kid's got a big goofy smile on his bruised face.

Frisk asks, "what kind of game do you have in mind?"

Excitedly Monster Kid says,
"Oh! We're gonna play this game I made, I call it 'football.' Ya know, 'cause I don't have any hands."

They don't have anything better to do, so Frisk nods.

Still excited, Monster kid responds, "sweet! I'll go get everyone else."

Monster Kid runs off... and Frisk remembers that they forgot to ask for his name... 'Oh well.'

Frisk contemplates following him, but ends up staying put. Which is just as well, since it doesn't take long for everyone to come back.

Arriving with Monster Kid is Snowdrake, Ice Cap, and the Rabbit kid.

"Yo! Dude, I just realized I never got your name. You can call me Monk... Monster Kid, but with less letters!"

Monk starts gesturing to the other monsters as he speaks, "and this is Drake... and Caprice... and Robert!"

The other monster kids greet Frisk awkwardly muttering various variations of "hey..."

They don't seem to like being put on the spot like that.

Frisk looks to the other monsters and introduces themself. "Hey, I'm Frisk."

Shortly after, Monk speaks again. "Yo! We're gonna go to the field in Snowdin forest to play, c'mon!"

He runs off, and the other monster kids follow, but Frisk waits for a while...

They're happy to be able to play again... Frisk runs to catch up.

 

"Football" consists of one person kicking a ball around and trying to keep it away from the others, for as long as possible. Every time Monk falls, someone else gets the ball. Then that person has to keep it away from everyone for as long as possible... until Monk inevitably gets it back. During half of the game, Frisk is in possession of the ball more often than not... Frisk decides to tone down their efforts, so everyone has a chance.

Following the game of "Football," Robert suggests playing Hopscotch... Which turned out to be exactly what Frisk thought it was.

Eventually, all the monster children are either tired out from playing various games or are called home.

Frisk goes to Sans and Papyrus' house to see where they're going to be staying, since HOME is empty now, but a series of sticky notes on the door answer their question.

 

FRISK, WE ARE NOT HOME. SORRY!
TORIEL IS STAYING IN OUR SHED.
YOU CAN STAY THERE TOO!
-PAPYRUS

it's because she has fur... get it?

SANS THIS IS NOT THE TIME!! IF YOU
ARE WORRIED, FRISK, DON'T BE! YOU
WILL FIND THAT IT'S VERY COSY IN
THERE NOW, AND ALSO LARGER.
IN FACT, CALL IT A GUEST ROOM!

we're planning on charging rent. does
1,000,000g/day sound ok?

WE CAN'T CHARGE THE QUEEN ONE
MILLION GOLD A DAY SANS!!

oh, that's just frisk's rent. the queen's
is 10,000,000,000g + 1 pie/day.

IGNORE HIM FRISK, YOU ARE BOTH
WELCOME TO STAY IN OUR GUEST
ROOM FOR AS LONG AS YOU NEED.
RENT FREE!

-P.S. WE COULD NOT HOOK UP THE
QUEEN'S FRIDGE, SO YOU'LL HAVE
TO USE OURS... SORRY! ALSO THERE
IS SPAGHETTI IN THE CUPBOARDS.

 

Frisk walks over to the shed, they notice the door nob on the outside was changed to be more accommodating, and the shed has been haphazardly increased in size. A "window" was cut out in the wall... but it's actually just a really small door on the side of the wall.

Knocking on the actual door results in the sound of shuffling within the shed.

Toriel can be heard behind the door, "who's there?"

Frisk decides to take the opportunity to make a joke. "Lettuce."

Recognizing the voice and joke, Toriel plays along. "Lettuce who?"

Smiling subtly, Frisk loudly says "Lettuce in, it's cold out here!"

Toriel giggles behind the door, and Frisk hears a click as it's unlocked. "Come in Frisk, I have dinner ready."

Entering the "guest room" reveals... that Papyrus was right, it's cosy. Contrary to how the outside looks, inside the shed is well made and insulated. It's the same size and shape as Papyrus and Sans' living room/kitchen. A large fireplace, with a cauldron hanging in it, was added in the back left of the expanded shed, where the staircase would be, complete with her beloved chair and bookcase. There's no sign of a stove or refrigerator, but a sink was added next to the fire place. In the back right room, where Sans and Papyrus' kitchen would be, is instead a pair of beds; one is smaller than the other, and they're on opposite sides of the room. A single large dresser takes up the middle of the back wall between the two beds.

Throughout the makeshift house are familiar decorations, taken from HOME. A small side table appears to be acting as a dining table.

Dinner is nice, Toriel cooked up some spaghetti over the fireplace... because that's all Papyrus seems to stock in his cupboards.

Frisk tries to spend time with Toriel before bed, but she seems distracted and sad.

The night passes peacefully.

 

Four days pass within the barrier. Frisk plays with the monster children frequently during this time, but also spends time practising their magic. They're able to consistently make purple spears now, but still can't get the hang of cyan spears. They also started learning more about fire magic and can reliably make a small fire, to keep themselves warm, but also learned that snow in the Underground is... somehow... very flammable. Frisk thinks Sans might've played a joke on them, but better safe than sorry. After the first three days, Frisk tries to see if they can communicate with Chara; but they can't...

After the fourth day, Alphys sends a group text to Papyrus, Sans, Undyne, Asgore, Toriel, and Frisk...

From: ALPHYS >
Hey guys, I'm almost done with the
aircraft. I just need to do one more
test. Can you all meet me at the
Waterfall entrance to Hotland? I
need to check how much magic it
takes to carry everyone.

From: funnybones >
i'm already there, where are you?

From: CoolSkeleton95 >
YOU CAN COUNT ON ME TO BE
THERE ALPHYS!

<To: AL, Co, fu, St, AS...:
Sweet, I'm in hte middle of a gam
of Hide-n-seek! Theyll NEVER find
me now! I'll b ther soon.

From: StrongFish91 >
I'll be there babe, just don't forget
about that special exercise activity
we planned!

From: ALPHYS >
OMG STRONGFISH91!!! THIS IS A
GROUP TEXT!!!!! D:> FRISK IS IN
THIS CHAT!!

From: StrongFish91 >
Yea I know, I was talking about our
jog... What did you think I was
talking about...?

From: NAPSTABLOOK22 >
.....oooooh.... i was added to
this group chat..............................
.... for some reason.......................

From: NAPSTABLOOK22 >
it must have been a mistake..........

From: NAPSTABLOOK22 >
oooooh.... i'm sorry........ i.............
shouldn't have replied...................
......................... i'll just go now....

From: NAPSTABLOOK22 >
........ bye............... sorry...............

From: NAPSTABLOOK22 >
ooooooooh.... i'm just making it
worse............................................

From: ALPHYS >
OMG I'm so sorry
NAPSTABLOOK22! I must have
added you by mistake! I'll make it
up to you, I promise!! :D

 

Frisk puts their phone on silent and looks away from it, knowing that the chat probably wont stop any time soon...

They check their pockets and dimensional boxes before they make their escape.

Pockets: SnowPiece, Stained Apron, Frying pan.
Box A: Hot Dog...?
Box B:

Equipped:
Stick
Ribbon

Noting that everything is in order, Frisk carefully sneaks through the town and gets a ride from Riverperson to Waterfall, then walks to where their final unfriendly confrontation with Undyne started.

When Frisk arrives, they see some sort of vehicle on the path. At least... Frisk assumes it's a vehicle.

It's rounded, but also somewhat angular in some places. It looks like a huge plastic car. Instead of wheels, it has what Frisk assumes are thrusters... probably magic based. The outside of it looks clean and solid, but Frisk can tell it was make with scraps.

Alphys gestures for the monsters, and Frisk, to enter the vehicle. Two large doors open up on one side, they're large enough for Asgore to enter but he still has to stoop a bit while inside. A regular-sized door opens up to what Frisk assumes is the pilot's seat. Alphys steps in with the Artifact. Once everyone else is in the vehicle, Frisk gets in too... it's creaking ominously, but Frisk trusts Alphys enough to risk it.

The interior is quite nice, despite only having access to junk parts and scrap metal. It's clean and polished, the chairs look comfortable enough, and none of the bolts in the frame appear to be able to unscrew; It also looks like Alphys was able to add in some windows too.

All in all... still scary.

Asgore is sitting in the back, where the only chair he can sit in is, nearby is Toriel, then Papyrus, Sans, and Undyne...
All the chairs in the back of the aircraft are taken...

Alphys talks over a built in speaker,
"Hey Frisk, you should p-probably sit up here in the cockpit... Also, I would like to advise everyone to put on your seat belts! Safety first!"

Frisk complies. They get out and go to the other side to get into the passenger seat in the front of the vehicle.

They comment, genuinely impressed, "this flying vehicle looks cool!... That's what it is, right?"

Pleased by the compliment, Alphys begins flipping switches and tapping one the gauges while saying, "Y-yea! It's a bit rough around the edges, but it w-works fine... as long as nothing hits us... The archives don't have any aircraft that match your request, so Sans, Undyne and I had to make a custom one. I think we did p-pretty good! It's mostly made of plastic and fabric, but it has a metal frame and uses magic to fly. It's lighter than two refrigerators! Which is really good... but dangerous."

Taking on a more enthusiastic tone, Alphys continues, "I never knew b-blue magic could manipulate so much air! We've been able togeteachthrustertopush200lbsofaireverysecondwhen Papyrus and Sans areworkingtogether... combined, that'sover9000cubicfeetofairpersecond! And with improvedcoolingandheatingelements, wecanrapidlycooltheairtofreezingtemperatureswhile it'smovingthroughthethrusterswhileheatinguptheairaboveandinsidetheaircraftto... make it easier... to take off... uh... v-vertically... ...S-sorry... I got a bit excited."

Not fully understanding what she's talking about... and suddenly somewhat nervous, Frisk asks "is this the first time it's being... uh... flown?"

Alphys simply shakes her head in response, too busy getting everything ready. Frisk takes a moment to look around the cockpit.

There are a lot of instruments and gauges, the most notable one is the large MAGIC FUEL gauge which seems to say that it's about half-full. In the center, between Frisk and Alphys, the Artifact sits in a strange console... thing... Alphys occasionally places her hand on the Artifact, and all the information being displayed seems to update.

Frisk asks about it. "Hey, Alphys, what's up with the Artifact?"

The ship begins humming and vibrating as the thrusters slowly begin preparing for take off. Despite the assumed lack of moving parts, it's louder than Frisk anticipates. Alphys indicates for Frisk to put on a headset that's dangling from a support beam.

She speaks through her own headset. "The Artifact is acting as a c-computer for the ship. It keeps track of everything and displays it! I would have done more, but I don't have access to any f-features that are not for tracking or displaying information. I also have to manually update the i-information."

Frisk asks, "Isn't all this noise going to be worse for everyone in the back?"

To which Alphys shakes her head and says, "No, it's insulated back there to reduce n-noise... I ran out of material before I got to the cockpit."

A few minutes pass as Alphys checks the gauges one more time and flips a few more switches... then she grabs onto what Frisk assumes are the controls, they look like pre-war joysticks for "video games," and the aircraft takes flight. It's a little uneven at first, but she corrects it.

Frisk scrambles to figure out how to put on their seatbelt...

Scared at first, but then filled with awe, Frisk looks out the windows and sees the cavern that makes up a large portion of the Underground.

Alphys comments "B-beautiful, isn't it?!"

Frisk nods... then realizes Alphys can't look away from what she's doing, "yea, it's really pretty!"

Alphys flies to New Home and lands in a plaza, it all goes smoothly and quickly. She begins flipping switches again and the aircraft begins powering down.

She places her hand on the Artifact again and writes down what the gauges say.

Over the speakers, and through the headset, Alphys says "Alright! This test has been c-completed successfully! You may all leave the aircraft."

Frisk gets out and goes around to speak with everyone else.

Their voice still tinged with excitement, Frisk asks "how have preparations been going?"

Toriel answers, "they have been going very well, Frisk. Thank you for asking."

Alphys stumbles out of the cockpit and walks over, checking her notes and saying "a-alright! The aircraft can easily carry us and some luggage. It uses about... 2.8% of it's f-fuel capacity to lift off, then every... uh... let's see... every 'm-mile' uses roughly... 1.25% of the fuel... So... at full c-capacity we can fly for... about 77.76 miles! A-actually that's not counting luggage, it will be l-less than that, but it'll be OK. I'd hook it up to the CORE, but we n-need the power for the town we're going to make on the Surface..."

Frisk feels like they understand what Alphys said, but they're having a hard time grasping it... "How long till we leave the Underground?"

Asgore answers the question before Toriel or Alphys can, "very soon, young one. All we need to do is prepare everyone's belongings."

Worried... Frisk asks "how are you going to build a town? Is there magic for making buildings?"

Alphys shakes her head, still looking at her notes, and replies "no, we'll be taking m-magic shield emitters as temporary housing. It's warm enough on the surface that we won't n-need houses right away, and the forest has all the materials we'll need for a basic town."

While Alphys flips the page on her notepad, Toriel picks up where she left off. "Fire-type monsters will work together in shifts to provide heat to those who need it. Also, as it turns out, the aberrant creatures on the surface are infused with unstable magic. The green magic shields will immediately try to correct the instabilities, causing the creatures to perish on contact. We should all go and prepare now, today is a big day."

Frisk is happy that they seem to have everything worked out.

Asgore leaves to New Home, opting out of flying since he's so close already... and he's worried he'll break the aircraft...

Everyone else, however, gets back on the aircraft and Alphys lands on the roof of the Hotland Lab.

On arrival, Undyne quickly leaves to get a ride from Riverperson. Papyrus tags along, but the queen stays to help prepare.

Frisk decides to look around the Lab to see all the tech Alphys is working on... They're met with the sight of about 30 something monsters running about working on various projects. Some look rugged and are putting things together, some are drawing plans or talking to the rugged ones with plans in hand, others seem to be furiously studying papers that may or may not have been written by Alphys... poor things... and one is messing with a sink.

The monster messing with the sink must be the only plumber... 'Oh hey wait, that one's the Elder Puzzler! I didn't know he was a plumber...'

A buzzing sound behind Frisk grows louder and a monster above them yells "Look out!"

Frisk looks back while ducking and sees Tsunderplane carrying too much, and losing their balance.

Sans walks out from a corner that Frisk doesn't think actually exists and gestures for them to follow him.

 

They arrive at Sans' workshop, presumably still behind his house in Snowdin... and Sans pulls out a chair to sit in.

"sup?"

Confused, Frisk asks "what? You brought me here, I though you had something to talk about?"

"heh, you just follow people around when they ask you to...? that's pretty silly."

Frisk puffs up their cheeks and scrunches their nose at Sans in irritation.

He replies with a soft chuckle. "don't worry, i've got a reason... i'm gonna get cu-270/s from the lab. gotta make sure it doesn't kill the lich and set all the souls free. and, i need a favour."

Curious, Frisk nods then tries to imitate one of the older monster children, "what'chu need broski?"

"i need you to gather as much determination as you can, right before the barrier drops."

Frisk nods. "I can do that."

With a tinge of worry, Sans replies.
"great. but i need you to be more determined than you've ever been before. I know it'll draw that thing to us faster, but it's important."

Worried, and more curious Frisk asks "why? You're starting to sound kinda... ominous."

Sans looks away, but Frisk can tell his eyes are dark... "chances are, cu-270 woke up immediately after the reset. hopefully it's disoriented, or we'll have a bigger problem on our hands. you probably don't remember, but you said that it broke out last time..."

Sans takes on a serious voice, his posture tenses up... "You don't know the full nature of how it is being contained... The fact that it broke out on it's own... is absolutely terrifying. If it's is not disoriented, then chances are..."

He sighs before continuing.
"cu-270/s was made to fight in wars, so its first instinct is to kill its enemies... we can't let it do that. I have to disable it..."

Looking back at Frisk with his usual expression, he says,
"ah, but what am i worried about. it'll be fine. i'm probably remembering it all wrong... after all, he didn't kill you. right?"

Sans leaves with a wink, but Frisk remains for a moment... confused and frightened... Then they remember something...

Frisk leaves the workshop and goes to end the game of hide-and-seek they just remembered sneaking out in the middle of...

Monk sees them and yells out in relief, "Yo dude!! You're crazy good at hide and seek, where were you?! We almost thought you left, dude!"

Frisk tried their best to suppress a guilty chuckle, they lie. "...I was in San's workshop."

Really surprised, Monk says "YO!! Sans let's you go into his workshop?! Aw, dude, that's like... cheating! We can't go in there..."

Sheepishly, Frisk replies "Sorry..."

Easily forgiving Frisk, Monk says "It's cool dude! Hey, lets go play another game!"

Monk starts running off, but waits for Frisk to follow... They do, hoping to calm down in preparation of the big move.

And calm down they do. Frisk teaches them out to play another game, but because Monk already used "football" for his game... Frisk says it's called "soccer." With five participants there are two goalies and two players, with one referee. The kids switch off on who's the ref each goal.

* Playing with their monster friends, while thinking of the future, fills Frisk with Determination.

It's night-time before they realize it, and the kids are all called to New Home. Every monster that can carry something is, and any monster that can't is either helping keep everything organized or staying out of the way. Excitement and hope fills the air as the whole Underground works together on a common goal.

Sans gets Frisk and helps them join up with the main group in New Home, which Frisk chose as the first contact for humans. When there, Frisk sees a large square hole in the ceiling of the cavern, presumably for the Aircraft to leave the Underground through... but there's still rock and dirt in the way on the other side of the barrier.

Alphys, Undyne, Papyrus, Asgore are already in the Aircraft. Sans, however, appears to have left. Frisk determines that he most likely went to the CORE teleporter in anticipation of the barrier dropping... They consider how strange it is that they remember the teleporter, but nothing after it. Toriel stays behind to guide the monsters out of the Underground in an orderly fashion.

Frisk gets in the cockpit and asks,"how are we gonna get the aircraft out of the cavern?"

Busy flipping switches, Alphys doesn't respond immediately. "You see that square hole in the top of the cavern? Some f-flying monsters are going to take explosives and place them in st-strategic locations to weaken the rock and make it collapse... It's mostly going to fall in an empty plaza, b-becasue Asgore asked that we keep damage to a minimum... in case we ever need to come back."

Their curiosity satisfied, Frisk thinks about everything that has happened so far... They consider all the friends they have that depend on them now, the games they have yet to play, the friends they have yet to make... They think about the dangers that lurk outside the barrier... Everything they can think of to boost their determination... They think about their parents, and how worried they probably are...

* The burning desire to make the world a safer place for their friends and family... fills Frisk with DETERMINATION!

* FILE SAVED
* FRISK FEELS REJUVENATED

 

For the first time... Frisk manages to SAVE without needing to interact with a SAVE star.

They place their hand on the Artifact and command it to take down the barrier, fear pulling at their heart, but bravery pushing them forward.

When the barrier falls, they feel the hope of monsters rising, they feel Determined! The feel FREE!

No... Not free... They feel something else...

It's like being completely unrestricted... and yet... having no... access...?

They...

Feel...

Disconnected.

Franticly, Frisk looks within themselves... They feel no connection with their SAVE stars... 'It's almost as if... they all went out?'

Suddenly, Tim telepathically speaks to them through the Artifact; confirming their fears.

* CRITICAL WARNING! A SPIKE IN FOREIGN DT HAS BEEN DETECTED!
* SAVES, LOADS, AND RESETS HAVE BEEN SUPPRESSED!

 

Frisk's heart is beating quickly and heavily in their chest... They only have one chance to get everything right...

* CRITICAL WARNING!! LOCAL DT LEVELS DROPPING DANGEROUSLY LOW!

 

They try their best to calm down... 'It'll be fine... If cu-270/s let out the SOULs, then as soon as we trap the horror it'll be fine... right?'

But Frisk's inner turmoil has put a scared expression on their face, and Alphys is worried now... She hesitates to take off...

Doing their best to regain composure, Frisk says,
"...I-I... Uh... Didn't expect to feel the barrier drop, that's all! It was like.... an egg... cracking and dripping down over my head..."

Not entirely convinced, but trusting her friend, Alphys continues preparing the aircraft.

Frisk buckles in, and puts the headset on as the magic thrusters roar to life.

Flying monsters race up to the square hole in the cavern's roof, and place explosives. Once they return, an explosion rocks the cavern and sends small bits of rock everywhere... It's a larger explosion than Alphys calculated, and it causes some debris to fall onto a building...

Fortunately that area is empty, thanks to Toriel.

Light shines through the new hole in the cavern... Alphys takes off, and the other monsters slowly begin to walk to the main exit.

Once clear of the gaping hole in the cavern's roof, Alphys flies towards the, now clearly visible, village. For a moment she's in awe of the sight of the Surface mountain range, but she snaps out of it when she realizes that she's starting to go off course.

The aircraft isn't particularly fast, but going in a straight line makes up for that.

As they approach the village, Frisk says "I think we should land outside of the wall, or we might scare them."

Alphys nods, and begins to land... but the aircraft descends a little faster than she wants it to, so the landing ends up being a bit bumpy.

The guards in front of the gate stand at the ready, one of them runs off into the town, presumably to get back up.

Papyrus, Asgore, Undyne, and Alphys get out, but Frisk has trouble with their seatbelt... it seems the rough landing caused it to get stuck.

Frisk can hear yelling from Johnathan, he's demanding that the monsters leave.

They refuse politely, of course, because they are waiting for Frisk...

Papyrus begins speaking, but Frisk can barely hear it over the still roaring thrusters. Seems Alphys couldn't turn them off.

Alphys comes around to help Frisk get out of their seat belt, she looks worried.

The sound of weapons hitting magical shields can be heard through the sound of the thrusters, and Alphys begins to shake. Eventually she opts to cut the seatbelt, hoping that seeing Frisk will calm the humans down.

Frisk hears sees people outside, it looks like backup has arrived... they still can't get the seatbelt undone.

When Alphys hops out from the passenger side, arrows streaks past her; she hides behind the aircraft.

Motes of fire light up around the monster party, and more green shields are formed. Alphys takes cover behind the aircraft, shaking...

Undyne lets out her famous war-cry, hoping to intimidate the humans, but it just agitates them more...

When Frisk finally works up the courage to step out, they hold out their arms and say "Stop fighting my fri-!"

But an arrow pierces their chest. Frisk falls backwards in shock and from the force of the arrow hitting them... The guard's faces go pale as they realize who they shot. The offender drops their bow and falls to their knees, hand over mouth, trying to stop from vomiting.

Frisk can barely see Arthur attempting to rush forward to grab them... but a large wall of fire erupts from the ground.

Asgore lets out his rage, he can easily be heard over the roar of the thrusters; which perfectly compliments the rage in his voice.
"YOU DAMN HUMANS!! HOW COULD YOU HARM ONE OF YOUR OWN!?"

The humans stagger backwards slightly in fear, before regaining composure and resuming their assault on Asgore, Undyne, and Papyrus.

Asgore, unable to stop the arrows with his wall of fire, uses his immense form to make sure Frisk doesn't get hit again.

Frisk's vision starts to get blurry, and they choke on the blood accumulating in their pierced lung. Alphys leans over Frisk doing her best to stop the bleeding, but she doesn't know what to do. In her panic, she forgets about the Artifact.

Papyrus pleads with the humans and monsters, to no avail. Both sides are angry and on guard.

The humans are convinced that the monsters attacked first, but the monsters haven't attacked yet.

A large man approaches the chaos, wearing plate-mail and carrying a broadsword.

Frisk tries to sit up, but pain shoots through their chest and forces them back down.

Frisk hears Bernard yell, "don't move Frisk! You'll make it worse! I'm coming for you!"

Then yells at the guards, "stop attacking, dammit!"

The aircraft is finally turned off, and the sound of heavy armour dropping to the ground can be hear through the flames.

Bernard charges forward, through the fire, and makes his way past Asgore... who offers no resistance, since the man dropped his weapons and armour, clearly indicating his true desire.

Undyne, however, thrusts a spear at him. He parries her attack and knocks her down, then hurries over to Frisk. He sees Alphys attempting to do something, it confuses him for a moment... but he continues going. Alphys is taken by surprise and backs away, stumbling over herself in the process. But then she stands up and tries to block his path... The aircraft becomes a little more damaged as she's shoved into it.

Undyne is not happy with that.

The other humans are too scared and shocked to do anything now, so they maintain defensive posture.

Undyne tries to wrestle the human away from Frisk, but Asgore stops her. He maintains the wall of fire, but he recognizes the love and worry the older human has in his eyes... Dropping his weapon and armour helped too.

Bernard yells out again, "Arthur, get the Addamses! Kevin, prepare the medical room!"

Gently, Bernard says, "be strong Frisk... I'm sorry, but this is going to hurt."

He grabs the shaft of the arrow to prevent if from moving around while he lifts their back up slightly, Frisk yelps slightly and begins coughing.

Reaching around to Frisk's back, Bernard feels blood and a prick; indicating that the arrowhead has completely pierced through Frisk's chest.

Bernard beacons for Alphys to come closer and hold Frisk in position, now understanding what she was trying to do before he arrived.

It doesn't matter to him that she's a monster despite the fighting, because she was trying to keep Frisk alive... and that's all that matters now.

After she slowly approaches and carefully holds Frisk, he rips off part of his shirt and wraps it tightly around the shaft of the arrow, then he tears another piece and wraps it around the shaft and then around to the back and ties it. After using the rest of his shirt as makeshift bandages, Papyrus offers his small cape, and Bernard takes it to help stop the bleeding; it's turned into two small scarves in the process.

Alphys can't help but stare at this old but well built human... she thinks about all the anime she's watched, and realises...
'Real life is based on Anime!! OMG THIS IS SO.... TERRIFYING!'

Asgore looks back to Frisk every time they yelp in pain, to make sure they're OK.

He's tempted to drop his guard and help as best as he can... but he can't risk it.

Bernard slowly begins to pick Frisk up, shushing them all the while. Frisk can't help but make small sounds of agony, despite their attempts.

A scream is heard from the gate, Frisk can make out a black silhouette passing through the flames that drop as she approaches.
'Oh no... Mom... she can't... see me like this...'

Horrified by what she sees, Marceline cries out "No... No! My sweet little angel! Please..."

Her voice begins to waver as she continues speaking in her native French, "Ne meurs pas, pitié!"

Bernard begins to move, carefully but slowly picking up speed.

Frisk assumes he's taking them to get treatment for their wound, he looks down at Frisk and says "Stay awake, don't fall asleep!"

Still panicked, Marceline begins crying as she does her best to hold on to Frisk's hand. "Je ne peux pas perdre un autre enfant!"

Conrad is off at the side of the gate, staring down disappointedly at the guard that shot the arrow.

Frisk thinks he's talking, but can't tell anymore. All the sounds are beginning to blur together.

Asgore, ignoring the protests of the humans, forces them to clear out from the path. Undyne catches on and assists.

Eventually, Marceline begins to guide the monsters in the direction they're headed, and where they need to prevent people from blocking.

In this emergency, Bernard is happy to have someone who can move small crowds with only their arms; monster or not.

Alphys is too scared to follow and opts to stay in the aircraft.

Papyrus yells out words Frisk is not able to understand, but probably have something to do with staying with Alphys.

They feel... so... tired...

 

Something shakes them and they wake up. They're in a room they've never seen before. Their breath is rapid and painful, causing them to cough, which causes them to cough more. Pain is shooting through their chest... They don't understand why at first, but then remember what had happened. A blurry figure is standing over them, stabbing them with something... Saying something...

Frisk can't understand, but tries to stop themselves from coughing and slow their breathing down; it feels like something is stabbing them every time they cough or breathe.

The pain slowly fades away... Frisk begins to feel sleepy again, but someone yells something they can't understand... It keeps them awake.

'Where... where is that voice? Where's the voice that... always helped me...? Why... am I alone?'

Right before hope was lost, Frisk hears Asgore saying an all too familiar phrase... "Frisk, Stay determined!"

Something is different about it though... it's directed at them this time... 'I...  I can't die...!'

Slowly regaining their mental faculties, Frisk wipes their eyes so they can see clearly and sees their father standing over them. To their right is a small table with an arrow head, and the shaft it belongs to, laying on a cloth.

Frisk feels very thirsty...

Conrad is cleaning the wound, the supplies he's using... they're rare... Frisk contemplates that to distract them from what is going on.

A large fluffy boss monster steps over after Conrad waves. Green light encompasses Frisk, and fills their vision.

It feels so warm... So nice... Slowly, it gets easier for Frisk to breathe. They begin coughing, and Conrad brings a piece of fabric for them to cough into. When he takes it away, Frisk can see blood on it from inside their lungs.

Frisk still feels sleepy though... A large white paw reaches over and caresses their forehead and cheek, lulling them to sleep.

 

Sans arrives at the Secret lab, ready for a confrontation... The spike in DT wasn't Frisk's, which can only mean one thing.

CU-270/S is awake, and angry...

As expected, the lab is running on backup power. Sans sits the egg-shaped Relative Space-Time Tracking device down in the room, opting out of taking such a valuable asset where there could be fighting.

The lights in the halls begin flickering, distant sounds of magic going off can be heard.

Sans hurries through the facility.

When he turns the corner, he's momentarily taken by surprise when he sees desiccated human corpses scattered across the floor and smeared along the walls. Dried pools of blood stain the otherwise dull floor... Sans steps past it all... then a strange idea enters his thoughts.

Sans decides to enter the old chemistry room and picks up the mostly burnt clipboard, it feels more familiar than it should... he isn't sure why.

The sounds of fighting cease, but loud metal footsteps begin echoing through the facility... 'seems like cu-270 found his armor...'

Sans leaves the chemistry lab, odd side task accomplished, and then continues looking for CU-270... Though partially not really wanting to.

The first part of the facility is void of both the living and undead, he eventually arrives at the cafeteria on the monster's side of the facility.

It looks like it was recently torn to pieces. Tables are flipped and broken in half, the ceiling looks like it's about to collapse, and the floor is riddled with holes...

Sans sees a magic bone slowly turning to dust. It looks like it was part of an attack... but it... shouldn't be solid...

Realization sets in. 'oh god... he's reaching the true-con threshold... i... i shouldn't have come alone... shi-'

A face suddenly appearing in front of, and uncomfortably close to, his interrupts his thoughts.

Like a deer in headlights, Sans freezes solid as a pair of red eyes stare unwavering into his own darkened sockets for two terrifying seconds...

Then vanish?

Relieved, and still a bit shaken, Sans contemplates what just happened... He decides to check the restricted historical records on the human's side of the facility... he's been there once before, so he just needs to take a shortcut.

He isn't worried about CU-270 finding the Phylactery, because the containment unit prevents it from remembering things from before a RESET.

One wrong turn later, and Sans finds himself in the archives. Bodies are laying around, most are crouched behind desks... There's a significant lack of dried blood, which makes sense seeing as these people probably died of starvation or suffocation.

The archives are completely sealed to prevent paper records from decaying as quickly.

Sans doesn't have that issue, not anymore.

He hasn't been human for well over two and a half thousand years now... and there's no going back.

Returning his thoughts to the present, Sans searches through the archives to try finding something he can use to subdue CU-270.

What he finds instead are reports that completely contradict what his team was given on CU-270...

Sans finds a recording and plays it, placing the speaker directly against his head so it can pick up the vibrations in place of an atmosphere.

It isn't easy to hear the recording, but the vibrations tickle the right bones and let him listen.

 

RECORDING START:

SUBJECT CU-270/S
SOUL Red
LOG# 2417

Subject continues to show an unfavourable attitude towards violence, preferring instead to avoid the situation.

The little shit doesn't understand that it doesn't have a choice. I'm ordering to have its punishment increased daily until it completes the task.

Next week it'll be viable for duplication, so we need to find a subject that has entirely recessive traits so we can create a second red SOUL.

Maybe that one will be willing to fight and we can toss the faulty one.

This is David Holmes, signing off.

RECORDING END.

 

David's voice sounds much younger than it is now... Sans feels like most of the recordings will follow the same trend, but he plays another one.
This one is marked as important.

 

RECORDING START:

SUBJECT CU-270/S
SOUL Red
LOG# 2428

Oh thank GOD! The subject attacked me today!

I was beginning to think we would have to scrap the whole 270 line...

A quick punishment from yours truly set it straight. I don't think it'll ever attack me again after this, but now I know its limit.

Tomorrow we begin the process to convert some of the Science team into liches, now that the kinks have been worked out.

I've requested to be the first, since it was my research that got it to work in the first place.

I'm planning on having the subject be a part of the ritual.

I want some of its power, since it isn't likely to use it any time soon.

...

This is David Holmes, signing off.

RECORDING END.

 

... Sans is not happy with what's going on in these recordings... But there's one last recording marked as important...

He prepares himself...

 

RECORDING START:

SUBJECT CU-270/S
SOUL Red
LOG# 2511

Today confirms my hypothesis. The subject has completely relapsed and is refusing to fight. At best, it glares at me angrily with red eyes.

It spends most of its time huddled in a corner... it's a god damn waste of space now!

... Such a pathetic creature.

...

Sanchez sabotaged some of our equipment before disappearing, the bastard. He even got out with my stash of alcohol!

I told them that crazy ass "scientist" was going to cause trouble, but they were so impressed with his hand-held portal device that they wouldn't listen... He probably stole it from someone.

Fortunately, though, that incident lets me pawn this failed subject off to the monster side since ours is "compromised" temporarily.

I'm going to fudge the records to keep the monsters from getting too worked up over our... generous use of various creative punishments, they'll be disguised as "vital research operations."

It's lucky its SOUL is more valuable than everything in the facility combined... or we'd just scatter it through time and space.

We also can't extract the SOUL, since there's a risk it'll escape during the procedure...

... *Sigh* ...

Oh yea, mandatory reporting for new distortions in the space-time continuum start as of today. We just had an incident where someone accidentally walked into an unmarked tear and disappeared for a few weeks.

That guy was lucky, he could've been reverted into a child, or ended up as vapour.

David Holmes, signing off.

RECORDING END.

 

'cu-270 was rejected... for refusing to fight? ...all that time, all those things we were told to do... was because...'

Disgusted with himself for being so blind... but more disgusted by David... Sans begins contemplating killing David, repeatedly.

Sans suddenly becomes very aware of the SOUL container in his rib cage... 'I should probably transfer them over to a better container...'

Despite the horrible information, Sans feels better about the situation... His desire to murder David, unceasingly, subsides.
'if cu-270 only wants to kill david, chances are it... no... he... chances are he can be rehabilitated. i've gotta get to him before he kills david...'

Sans tosses the recordings off to the side, since they're no longer worth anything to anyone.

He feels a tinge of regret for not rebelling sooner, but there's nothing he can do about it now. He steps around a corner to arrive in his office...

Once there, he grabs a clipboard that's more familiar than it should be... it was probably important before the RESET.

After grabbing the clipboard, he moves over to his old workbench and begins putting something together... He hopes it'll prevent David from having access to his Phylactery, without having to break it, so he can kill him.

Four minutes pass, and the rest of the facility is still quiet...
'it's obvious cu-270 wasn't trained to search for things... but that won't stop him. he's a red like frisk... too determined.'

After a couple more minutes, Sans inspects his handheld Anti-Magic field projector.

Having seen some Phylacteries before, he knows what patterns he needs to look for. This device, should it work properly, will use the imbued magic to search for the right pattern and nullify it... without nullifying the patterns that are holding the other SOULs.

'it won't be very big, or last very long, but this should be enough... for now.'

'now... how did cu-270 find david's phylactery before?'

Sans decides to roam around the facility... but the darkness is making it more troublesome to search than he is willing to let it be. He can't keep using magic to look around, or he'll run out.

He goes to the generator room... and sees the problem pretty quickly. He begins making pseudo parts with magic... the action feels familiar...

Looking over his shoulder, expecting to see someone there, results in nothing... He tries to place the parts, but they're destroyed on contact.

'humans... using magic to prevent the generator from being destroyed by magic... which also prevents it from being fixed by magic...'

Sans sighs... 'i'll have to...'

Another hit of deja vu.

'well... i hope the backup generator is more agreeable...'

When he arrives at the backup generator, it is indeed more agreeable... He decides to route power to the SOUL extraction room first, to get Chara into a different container. In order to get enough power, however, he has to shut everything else off except the teleporter room... Which actually makes the visibility problem worse, but Chara's situation is a bit more important than revenge. Maybe CU-270 will show up and they can leave...

All the shortcuts are starting to tire Sans out... so he walks to the extraction room instead.

The procedure is fast, since there's no body interfering.

In the side of his vision, Sans sees two pin pricks of orange light watching him from the shadows...

Paired with them, Sans sees a strange silhouette...

It's David.

Sans hurriedly puts the new SOUL container into his rib cage... its isn't particularly comfortable, but the shape keeps it off his pelvis at least.

The silhouette is gone when he looks back up.... but an old, yet familiar, voice echoes through his head...

'Long time no see, Sans.'

Not happy to hear him, but trying to keep his emotions in check, Sans replies, "david. you're luckier than you know. i'm not here to kill you."

In a falsely hurt voice, David replies,
'Oh my... is that how you treat an old friend Sans? With empty threats? Here I am just saying hello... You always were rude, weren't you?'

Not having any of his nonsense, Sans retorts, "just stay out of my way."

Sans leaves the extraction room, keeping his guard up. He continues searching for David's Phylactery...

But he can't get close to it while David is following him with divination magic... So, once again, Sans is required to acknowledge the human part of his heritage and use magic normal monster's can't wield...

Sans casts a Detect Magic spell.

Feigning interest, the voice says, 'Ohh, looking for something, are we? ...Mind if I hazard a guess?'

In his usual tone, Sans says. "knock yourself out. literally, please."

In an arrogant and belittling tone, David says,
'You're looking for the Necronomicon, aren't you? You want to find some way to reverse your... condition, correct?'

Sans replies flatly, "nope."

False intruige fills David's voice, followed by a mocking tone.
'Well, if you're not here to kill me, or find the Necronomicon, then there isn't anything else you could be looking for... unless... Ha! Nevermind...'

"shouldn't you be worrying about cu-270 finding your precious phylactery?"

Amused by the statement, David replies, 'That runt is no where near it. I could probably tell it where my phylactery is and it wouldn't find it!'

Sans quietly makes a note of that.

The only place CU-270 hasn't been... is the generator room. There is a lot of magic in there, so it's most likely being used as a cover.

Strategically finding his way near the generator room, without appearing like he is, Sans catches a glimpse of something in a hidden sub-level that he didn't expect to see. 'oh, that must be the necronomicon... huh. well, he doesn't need it... and it's way too dangerous to leave here...'

In an arrogant tone, David says, 'You're right Sans... I don't need it any longer. My days of petty ritual sacrifice are over. I have all the SOULs I need... I just need... well, you'll find out soon enough. I'd offer to let you take the book, but, well, I hate you.'

"fair enough, i hate you too. welcome to the club."

Sans sneaks a peek toward the generator room... just as he expected, it's protected from divination magic...

Looking back to the Necronomicon, Sans comments, "you're way too obvious. you want the hollow soul, don't cha?"

Very amused, David retorts,
'Hah! As always, Sans, you fail to see the whole picture. That thing is worth less to me than you are. I don't understand why you're carrying it.'

"maybe it's to confuse you?"

David replies, in an guinuently curious tone, 'Wait... Don't tell me... Sans, you're really going to try bringing that pathetic creature back to life? You know that a HOLLOW SOUL will never be whole again. You're wasting your time... And you know more than anyone that I HATE wasted time... well, maybe you don't know that as much as the runt does.'

Using the opportunity to hide his true intentions, Sans replies,
"welp, you got me. that's exactly what i'm here for. why don't you just run off and pretend like i'm not here?"

In an amused and crazed voice, David responds, 'You know what Sans... I think you're even crazier than I AM! Hahahaha!! I'll let you take the Necronomicon, so I can watch you fail! Oh, I can't wait to see all the MAYHEM you unleash on this world... It will be so... beautiful.'

Sans replies flatly, "i don't need your permission... but thanks."

In a tone that sounds sincere at first, David says,
'Oh, Sans... I may be evil, but... I should warn you... Ah, what the hell am I saying?! I'll let you find out for yourself! AHAHAHAHAH!!!'

The voice fades from his mind, laughing in a crazed frenzy.

Sans can't risk David catching on to his real plan... So he does his best to find a safe place to shortcut to in the sub-level.

'...filled with magic traps... probably also physical ones. welp, here goes nothing.'

When Sans lands, something thrusts forward and pierces between his second and third rib... Thankfully, it missed Chara's container.

The Necronomicon is sitting... ominously... on a large obsidian altar.

It looks like it has seen better days.

The room is small, and nondescript, but the altar... Large asymmetric marble spikes, capped with gold, rise up on both sides of the altar, their white surfaces have splotches of dried blood and bits of sinew on them. The surface of the Altar is no better off, a rotting corpse and various bones from other victims still lay on it. The altar has a backing with a bust of some unspeakable horror on it... looking at it makes Sans feel his very being squirm in an unnatural manner... A fancy sacrificial knife rests on the altar next to the Necronomicon... Sans is tempted to pick it up.

Sans begins stepping forward, but his vision is pulled downwards...

On the front of the altar, engraved with gold, but tinged dark red from dried blood, it reads:
"Phn'glui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wagh'nagl fhtagn"

The phrase sends shivers down his spine as he reads it... He hurries and grabs the Necronomicon without thinking, then prepares his handheld anti-magic device...

Quickly, sans shortcuts to the generator room, breaks open the rest of the generator with some of the debris, and grabs the Phylactery that's being used as a part in the generator.

Sans expected David to act... but he hasn't.

He decides not to waste time, he has David hostage now... So, all he needs to do is find CU-270... and somehow convince him to follow...

Sans decides against trying to kill daivd, he'll probably die on his own now anyway.

After sighing and shaking off those strange feelings, Sans begins his search.

He'd use 'Locate Creature,' but he needs to save the rest of his magic... Just in case...

 

A sharp pain in their chest wakes Frisk up.

They hear the sounds of wagons and horses... 'They must be taking me to the Sanctum... But why?'

When Frisk opens their eyes, they see that their wrists are... bound?

Frisk looks around frantically and sees that the trees are all covered in snow, and a few other men are around them; they're all bound as well.

The man across from Frisk looks to them and speaks up, "Hey, you, finally awake..."

Frisk wakes up with a slight jump... 'Thank goodness it was just a nightmare.'

Frisk sees their mother sitting in a chair with her head laying on the bed, holding their hand. She adjusts herself. 'Must be sleeping...'

Squeezing her hand gently, just to make sure it isn't a dream, Frisk says "Hey..." as well as they can. It still hurts a bit to talk.

Marceline stirs... Looking up with tears in her eyes, Marceline quietly exclaims
"Mon ange! I'm so glad you're finally awake! I thought we were going to lose you!"

She moves up the side of the bed and wraps an arm around Frisk's head, pulling it close to her into a hug. She begins gently running her fingers through Frisk's hair with her other hand. Frisk can tell she's still crying. Frisk embraces her as best as they can from their position.

Conrad enters the room and sees that Frisk is awake. "Young lady, you are in serious trouble... but we'll get to that later. You need rest."

Frisk opts out of saying anything, instead they nod slowly. They still feel drowsy.

Toriel enters the room with a cup of water, and places it on the nightstand.

Marceline responds to the gesture, "Thank you, Queen Toriel, you have been most helpful."

The queen curtsies and leaves, giving the family time to be alone together.

Conrad moves over to the bed and kneels down, Marceline moves over to let him look at Frisk.

While checking to make sure their wounds healed properly, Conrad makes a remark. "Your... new friends are quite something... It's a shame that Johnathan attacked them unprovoked... He always did have an unfavourable view of monsters... quite a shame."

Finished with the examination, Conrad gets up and says, "alright my little star, it looks like you're all healed up, but stay in bed until dinner."

Frisk nods again and Conrad leaves.

Marceline caresses Frisk's forehead before leaving as well, saying, "rest well."

Frisk drifts peacefully back to sleep... A strange feeling pervades through the void...

 

Dinner time rolls around, and Toriel comes to check on Frisk.

She places her hand on Frisk's forehead, checking for a fever. "Wake up, young one... Dinner is ready."

Frisk stirs... When they open their eyes, they can only see white fur... It's Toriel's hand. "I'll be there in a bit..."

Gently, she says "Of course, you need to change clothes first and wash up. Give me a call if you need anything."

Frisk nods Sleepily, and Toriel leaves the room.

Looking down to where the arrow pierced, Frisk notices that there's no scar... 'Darn it, I was hoping I'd have proof! How am I gonna show off?'

They get up slowly, expecting pain... but there is none. Frisk gets one of their other shirts and a new pair of pants and puts them on... Then realizes that their shirt has perfect evidence of their close call. They're not sure why they are happy about it... but they are.

'At least I didn't get hit in the knee, I heard that really sucks...'

They contemplate the grim facts of arrow-to-knee injuries, then leave their room and go down the hall way.

From the corner of their view, however, two pin pricks of light in a dark room draw their attention... Frisk back pedals and looks into the darkness... They can't tell who it is, but they assume it's Sans... but it's a bit tall to be Sans, and too short to be Papyrus.

Quietly Frisk asks, "Sans?"

The pin pricks of light vanish.

Frisk is confused, but continues to the dining room.

Dinner is delicious, but the table is tense... Frisk's monster friends were invited, but they are kept at a... respectable distance.

It makes Frisk sad.

No one talks during or after the meal... but as Frisk is heading back to their room, Sans pulls them aside.

"hey, frisk, glad you're ok... i have news."

Frisk stops and looks at Sans.

"i got cu-270. i cant control where he goes, but he's anti-social and seems to prefer staying near me and papyrus... not sure why. anyway, if you see someone in a dark room... that isn't me. don't approach him, ok? he scares easily."

Frisk nods.

"alright, good... i told everyone else too. he should keep to himself for the most part... oh, yea... i got this."

Sans holds out a small strangely shaped box covered in even stranger runes and patterns... being held by some weird makeshift device.

Frisk looks at Sans questioningly.

"it's the lich's phylactery, in a special anti-magic field device..."

Quietly and carefully, afraid they'll hurt themselves, Frisk asks, "will the SOULs be able to escape?"

Sans shakes his head. "the amf is only big enough to stop the lich's soul from using the phylactery, they can't escape unless it breaks. anyhow, you should go get sleep. see ya tomorrow, kiddo."

After ruffing up their hair, Sans leaves to his bedroom... 'he chose the same one as before... neat.'

Frisk makes their way to their bedroom as well, they notice Chara's SOUL under their bed... They take the container and put it on the dresser.

Once changed into their pajamas, Frisk lays down. It takes a while for them to fall back to sleep...

 

* Frisk can feel the Gibbering Horror getting closer...

Chapter Text

Slowly, sleepily, unwillingly, Frisk wakes up. It feels like a new day, and yet they recognize it...

Frisk's Cell reads: 9:23 A.M. March 26th, 2045 | No Messages

'One day after breaking the barrier, yet again... Maybe this time it'll stay broken.'

Frisk contemplates the potential consequences of allowing Asgore to trap himself within the barrier... but not for long.

They hop off their bed playfully and look at Chara's familiar heart shaped container.

For some reason, Frisk feels like Chara can see them... They put a cloth over the container while they change, just in case.

Once changed into a plain black tee shirt and shorts, Frisk goes to the bathroom to brush their teeth.

It's been so long since they set up traps and obstacles during their nightly routine, that they forgot about the last ones they set up...

Fortunately the knife is dull, and the apple was already cut in half. It still hurt a little though.

Slightly limping now, Frisk goes to the bathroom to complete their morning routine, then starts walking to the dining room.

On their way, Frisk hears some unnatural sound that causes them to feel uneasy... It came from the spare bedroom.

With goosebumps, Frisk hurries a little faster to the dining room. 'It's probably just my imagination, right? The house is really old..."

They see Alphys, carrying the Artifact, at the top of the stairs.

Sounding somewhat relieved, but also in a hurry, Alphys says, "F-Frisk! Thank goodness you're okay. I... h-have a question for you."

Frisk looks at Alphys questioningly.

Who responds promptly, "I need you to g-give me and Asgore more access to the Artifact."

Confused at first, Frisk thinks for a moment, but they remember when they see Asgore at the bottom of the stairwell...

Frisk stops walking and nods, then holds out their hand. Alphys brings the Artifact closer for Frisk.

Before Frisk can give them access, however, they have to know how...
'Maybe if I just say, "Grant full Access to Alphys and Asgore Dreemurr" it'll work?'

Frisk forgot about the fact that the Artifact can read their mind... It works.

A small screen appears with a prompt for Alphys to place her hand on it, but then goes away because she's already holding the artifact.

Another prompt shows up, this one for Asgore... It complains about Alphys holding the artifact, but waits patiently.

Alphys hurries down the steps and into the dining room so that Asgore can be registered as a user.

Frisk enters the dining room.

Marceline is the only one cooking, since she has refused assistance from the monsters this time around.

Once breakfast is on the table, the monsters take their places a respectable distance away from Frisk and their family... It upsets Frisk.

Frisk asks the room, "before the RESET... you were all friends. Can't we try to get that back?"

The monsters look to eachother, then to Frisk.

Undyne is the first to speak up. "It isn't like we hate them, it's just... well..."

Asgore picks up where Undyne left off, "young one, do not worry, we just need some time to feel comfortable."

The monsters all nod, except Sans and Papyrus.

Sans shrugs, and moves closer to Frisk, saying. "i may be a skeleton, but i've got no bones to pick with frisk's parents."

Papyrus follows his brother, despite the pun, having thought it was a weird human custom for guests to sit away from the hosts.

Marceline and Conrad look somewhat more relieved, Marceline speaks,
"I hope you find the comfort you need. The Addamses have always been welcoming of monsters, so being distrusted by you is heartbreaking."

When no one else speaks, Toriel replies, "we thank you for your hospitality."

Marceline bows her head slightly, in a formal manner, acknowledging the appreciation.

Breakfast continues with a little less tension, when everyone is almost done, Frisk speaks up again in a casual but business-esk tone.
"We need to speak to the Village Elder about monsters helping around the village, there's a large forest headed towards us right now."

Marceline and Conrad are a little startled by the news. The monsters, however, are a bit confused; so much has happened recently...

Frisk reminds them,
"Wälder beasts, as we call them, are animals that were affected by the crazy magic the barrier gave off when it was trying to form the first time. They were deformed and mixed with plant life. Wälder is German, it means 'forests.' It was chosen because they disguise themselves as trees and stuff and move in large groups, which can be mistaken as forests during the day. They attack and kill anything that isn't them."

The grim reminder of the dangers of the Surface puts looks of worry on Toriel and Asgore's faces.

Conrad asks, "Frisk, how do you know there is a forest headed this way?"

To which Frisk replies, "It happened before I RESET. They're running from the Gibbering Horror... not very well though."

Marceline and Conrad look at each other with grim faces, Conrad looks to Frisk speaks again. "That is most dire news..."

Sighing, Marceline adds, sternly, "Frisk, my angel... you are in a lot of trouble. Don't think that saving the day will change that. Once this whole thing is behind us, you are grounded do you understand?"

Frisk nods sadly.

Conrad, hoping to ensure that Frisk knows that they care about them, asks, "how does your chest feel? Any pain, or coughing?"

Frisk shakes their head slowly.

Marceline reaches over to Frisk and places her hand on their cheek, and sadly says, "you scared us, Frisk... so badly. You were gone for over three hours, we searched and searched, even when we were told to stop... we thought... we thought you died... I couldn't..."

She takes her hand away from Frisk's cheek to dab her eyes with a cloth.

Conrad holds her hand and takes over, "we will go to the town hall before lunch, after you've swept the second story hallway."

Frisk nods less sadly.

After finishing breakfast, everyone helps clean up. Marceline doesn't object to the assistance this time.

Frisk catches Sans chatting with Conrad, it looks like they're exchanging jokes.

Once breakfast is cleaned up, everyone goes their own way...

Frisk meanders down the long hallway, sweeping.

They feel like they should go to the Town hall now, but they can't disobey or they'll be in more trouble...

When they make it to Sans' room, they notice that he left the door open a crack.

Having almost no concept of personal boundaries, Frisk enters Sans' room and looks around... It's exactly the same as in Snowdin...

Except for the Phylactery on the dresser next to the bed. It looks... interesting. 'Where's that gadget Sans had on it?'

Frisk feels compelled to grab it, they want to see the weird patterns and symbols...

Unable to resist, Frisk picks up the Phylactery to examine it... and a blinding flash disorients them.

 

* THE WORLD FADES AWAY.

 

FRISK OPENS THEIR EYES TO THE FAMILIAR VIEW OF ENDLESS DARKNESS... A STRANGE FEELING IS PULLING AT THEIR SOUL.

THEY LOOK DOWN TO EXAMINE IT... THEIR SOUL IS BLUE.

FRISK LOOKS AROUND THE DARKNESS...

IN THE DISTANCE TO THEIR LEFT, TWO WHITE PIN PRICKS OF LIGHT APPEAR... THEY SEEM TO TURN AND LOOK AT FRISK.

A PAINFUL TEARING SENSATION CAN BE FELT AS FRISK'S POINT OF VIEW SUDDENLY CHANGES.

THEY SEE THEIR BODY DROP, PHYLACTERY IN HAND. IT'S GLOWING PURPLE.

REALITY RETURNS AS THEIR BODY FALLS. IT HITS THE DRESSER ON THE WAY DOWN, FRISK HOPES THEY WONT FEEL THAT LATER.

THEY STRUGGLE TO MOVE BUT ARE PULLED THROUGH THE WALLS AND OUT OF THE MANOR.

FRISK TRIES TO CALL FOR HELP, BUT THEY CAN'T EVEN HEAR THEMSELVES OVER THE SOUND OF RUSHING WIND.

THEY SWIFTLY FLY ACROSS THE LAND, PAST MOUNT HUME, AND ACROSS THE FORBIDDEN PLAINS TO THE NORTH WEST OF EBOTT FOREST.

A MASS OF FUSED HUMANS MOVING CLUMSILY, AND SEMI-AIMLESSLY, TOWARDS THE VILLAGE BECOMES VISIBLE.

SEEING IT AGAIN CAUSES TERRIFYING MEMORIES TO RESURFACE... FRISK DOES THEIR BEST TO BLOCK THEM OUT, BUT THEY CAN'T.

FEARING THAT THE GIBBERING HORROR IS WHAT'S PULLING THEIR SOUL, FRISK TRIES TO MOVE AGAIN; BUT THEY CAN'T.

THEY FLY PAST THE HORROR AS IT REACHES OUT TO GRAB THEM.

FRISK FLIES PAST SEVERAL SMALL RUINED CITIES AND TOWNS, SEES A HUGE DESTROYED CITY IN THE DISTANCE, AND THEN FLIES OVER THE OCEAN TO AN ISLAND THAT THEY DON'T SEEM TO BE ABLE TO LOOK AT DIRECTLY.

FRISK ISN'T SURE WHY THEY'RE BEING TAKEN TO SUCH AN OBVIOUS, USELESS, AND BORING ISLAND.

THEY SLOW DOWN AS THEY ARE TAKEN UNDERGROUND INTO... 'THE SECRET LAB?'

WHEN FRISK FINALLY STOPS MOVING, THEY'RE IN A FAMILIAR ROOM. IT'S THE SOUL EXTRACTION ROOM.

TWO BRIGHT ORANGE LIGHTS APPEAR... ALONG WITH A SINISTER SILHOUETTE.

A DEEP CRAZED LAUGHTER ECHOES THROUGH THE FACILITY.

Full of twisted joy and triumph, David yells, "FINALLY! After so many years... I FINALLY HAVE THE PRIME SOUL FROM THIS TIMELINE!"
Proud and confident, he continues, "I KNEW I COULD EASILY FOOL THAT SKELETON!!!"
Menacingly, he comments, "Now... Stay very still... THIS IS GOING TO HURT!! AHHAHAHAHAHAAA!!"

A DECAYING HAND WRAPS AROUND FRISK'S VISION, AND THEY STRUGGLE TO MOVE.

FRISK IS CONFUSED... THEY DON'T UNDERSTAND WHY ALL OF THIS IS HAPPENING... THEY DESPERATELY TRY TO CALL OUT FOR HELP.

BUT NOBODY COMES.

DAVID'S GRASP GROWS TIGHTER... PAINFUL... HIS HAND SHAKES SLIGHTLY AS IT TIGHTENS, AND A CRACKING SOUND CAN BE HEARD...

THEN IT STOPS. THE GRIP LOOSENS. IT DOESN'T LOOK LIKE IT WANTS TO LOOSEN, BUT IT IS.

He angrily exclaims "NO! NO!!!! I WILL NOT LET YOU TAKE MY PRIZE! THEIR SOUL IS MINE!!"

DAVID'S GRASP GROWS TIGHTER AGAIN AS HE BEGINS USING BOTH OF HIS HANDS... THE CRACKING SOUND CONTINUES.

A STRONG PULLING SENSATION TRIES TO PULL FRISK AWAY FROM DAVID, BUT DAVID STARTS USING MAGIC TO AID HIS EFFORTS.

FRISK LOOKS WITHIN THEMSELF AND MUSTERS UP AS MUCH DETERMINATION AS THEY CAN. THE CRACKING SOUND SLOWS.

EVENTUALLY DAVID'S HANDS VIOLENTLY BREAK AWAY AND HE DOUBLES OVER IN AGONY, NURSING HIS DAMAGED HANDS.

Frustrated, he yells, "DAMN YOU!! WHY CAN'T YOU JUST DIE ALREADY?!"

HE QUICKLY TRIES TO GRAB FRISK AGAIN, BUT THEY SUDDENLY FLY ACROSS THE OCEAN, AND ACROSS TERRA, AT A BLINDING SPEED.

 

THEY'RE IN ANOTHER DARK ROOM...

FRISK IS WORRIED THAT IT'S THE START OF A TREND... BUT HOPES THAT MAYBE SANS SAVED THEM.

THEY LOOK AROUND... IT LOOKS LIKE ONE OF THE SPARE ROOMS IN THE MANOR... THEY FEEL SAFER.

A MIRROR ACROSS THE ROOM SHOWS FRISK THE REFLECTION OF A FLOATING, SEVERELY DAMAGED, BLUE HEART; IT'S THEIR SOUL...

THEY NOTICE TWO PINPRICKS OF LIGHT IN THE REFLECTION BEHIND THEM. FRISK ADJUSTS TO LOOK DIRECTLY AT THEM.

AS THEY DO, THEY SEE FRAIL HANDS SLOWLY AND GENTLY ENCOMPASS THEIR VIEW...

AFTER A FLASH OF GREEN THEY FEEL MUCH BETTER. THEY CAN FEEL THEIR SOUL REPAIRING ITSELF.

THE PINPRICKS OF LIGHT, WHICH FRISK NOW RECOGNISES ARE NOT SANS' EYES, GROW IN SIZE AND BEGIN TO CHANGE COLOURS.

THEY THINKS IT'S CU-270, BUT IT'S TOO DARK TO SEE CLEARLY, AND THEY DON'T REMEMBER WHAT HE LOOKS LIKE.

FRISK CAN FEEL THEIR SOUL CHANGE IN SYNC WITH THE EYES, IT FEELS STRANGE. OCCASIONALLY ONE EYE IS A DIFFERENT COLOUR
THAN THE OTHER. IT ALMOST SEEMS LIKE THEY'RE PROCESSING SOME SORT OF INFORMATION. LOOKING FOR SOMETHING.

A STRONG PULLING SENSATION CAN BE FELT OCCASIONALLY, BUT A STRONGER FORCE KEEPS THEM IN PLACE; IT'S A PAINFUL EXPERIENCE.

THE EYES BEGIN CHANGING COLOUR FASTER UNTIL THEY BLUR TOGETHER INTO A STATIC FILLED WHITE.

WISPY STRANDS OF PURPLE MAGIC SLOWLY BECOME VISIBLE, LEADING OFF INTO THE DISTANCE...

THE STRANDS BEGIN GLOWING BRIGHTER AS THEY'RE OVERLOADED WITH MAGIC, UNTIL THEY SHATTER AND DRIFT AWAY.

A VOICE BEGINS TO SPEAK STRANGE ECHOING WORDS THAT FRISK CAN'T UNDERSTAND... IT DISTURBS THEM.

* "K'YARNAK YORR'E EHYE."

REALITY BEGINS TO QUAKE AND FADE AWAY AS THE VOICES OF THE DAMNED JOIN IN, YELLING OUT IN ANGER AND GROWING LOUDER WITH EACH SYLLABLE ; IT SCARES FRISK...

* "F'AH'EHYE ORR'E HUP N'GHA."

MULTI-COLOURED STRANDS OF MAGIC EXTEND FROM THE FRAIL HANDS AROUND FRISK, AND WEAVE THEMSELVES AROUND FRISK'S SOUL.

A STRANGE SOUND -SIMILAR TO A LASER CUTTER- IS HEARD AS THE MAGIC WEAVES INTO THEIR SOUL AND BECOMES BLINDINGLY BRIGHT.

IT DOESN'T HURT LIKE FRISK EXPECTS IT TO... IT'S JUST A LITTLE TINGLY.

* "MGATHG N'GHANYTH WGAH'N."

FRISK FEELS A PRESENCE LEAVE THEM, AS THOUGH SOMEONE WAS WATCHING THEM UNTIL NOW.

* "R'LUH S'UHN UAAAH."

AS THE VOICE FINISHES SPEAKING, THE VOICES OF THE DAMNED CALM DOWN AND REALITY SLOWLY CORRECTS ITSELF.

THE LIGHT FROM THE MAGIC FADES TO A RED GLOW AS FRISK'S VIEW SLOWLY RETURNS TO THEIR BODY, AND THEY FALL UNCONSCIOUS.

 

Frisk wakes up in a cold sweat and immediately checks their SOUL, then sighs in relief. 'It looks normal... what happened??'

Noticing the significant lack of head pain, Frisk expresses their gratitude internally to whatever force prevented that painful experience.

They look around the room, expecting to see Sans, but no one's there. The door is also still slightly ajar.

In their hand, the Phylactery looks burnt and destroyed... 'Oh no... This is bad. I... I have to tell Sans.'

Frisk doesn't have to search hard, because when they open his door it leads to another room...

Sans is standing in the other room, arms crossed, foot tapping. "learn your lesson about touching dangerous stuff that isn't yours?"

Looking down at their feet and holding out the destroyed item, Frisk meekly says "I'm sorry... I ruined everything... The phylactery is broken."

Sighing, Sans takes the destroyed item from Frisk, looks at it briefly before tossing it to the side, and says,
"no, it isn't. i was gonna tell you later, but it seems i shouldn't've waited. this one was a trap. i was in such a rush i didn't check... sorry kiddo."

After a brief uncomfortable pause, Sans says "don't beat yourself up too much, we both made mistakes. just don't do it again, ok?"

Frisk nods.

Sans walks over and pats Frisk's head. "you're lucky cu-270 was sitting in the void, otherwise... well, y'know... you gotta stop almost dying."

After pushing them backwards with a wink, Sans closes the door.

Frisk is confused, they didn't know that the void could be entered voluntarily... They don't know if they want to practice that.

The encounter with cu-270 still makes Frisk feel uneasy. They assume that the magic he used was to help them, but it sounded creepy...
'I'll have to ask Sans about it later...'

Clearing their mind, so they don't get too worked up over it before they catch Sans and ask him, Frisk looks around and notices that they're in the hallway again, facing the closed door to one of the spare bedrooms.

Frisk goes back over to San's room to pick up the broom, and continues sweeping.

 

* CU-270 OBSERVES THE HUMANS FROM WITHIN THE VOID.

He can see the small groups of them dotted across Terra. They are so fragile. Do they know... that, with a thought, he could kill most of them?

Surely, since humans are the ones who taught him that, they would know; but he does not want to, and they do not seem to understand that.

CU-270 prefers to keep his mind silent. He does not like the sound of his own voice, nor the one in his mind. It sounds wrong, somehow.

Sans doesn't like it when he speaks either... Sans is glad Gaster taught him sign language, so is CU-270.

Perhaps, someday, he will learn another spoken language beyond Truespeech, or R'lyehian.

The only human phrase he knows isn't very pleasant... "Die, you pathetic creature." A phrase said to him often by David in the later tests.

Now is not the time to dwell on David, though.

"Frisk." CU-270 does not want them to be subjected to the same pain he was. He wonders what their goal is. What do they "dream" about? What do they "desire?" Whatever it is, nothing will stop them now. CU-270 wonders about the similarities they have with Frisk. Then realises how different they are... Hopefully those differences are good.

CU-270 considers why Sans wanted to keep him from killing David. Are humans not allowed to be killed?

If not, then why did he kill all those humans, with Gaster and the other skeletons?

He adjusts his ethereal view of the world from the void to focus in on what Sans calls the "Gibbering Horror."

Does Sans know that it is just a puppet? It has no will.

Sans is worried the SOULs David stole will go to it.

CU-270 considers that again, and acknowledges that it would not be good for humans.

For him it would not be much of a problem.

He doesn't particularly care either way if humans and monsters were to all die.

In fact, at some points, CU-270 finds that preferable... but he is interested to see how things play out.

* SANS IS TRYING TO GET HIS ATTENTION.

 

CU-270 doesn't understand how Sans can interact with him when he is the void, Sans just does.

He returns to reality.

CU-270 signs to Sans and asks, |WHAT DO YOU NEED, SIR?|

Sans waves one of his hands and shakes his head, saying casually, in Wing-Dings, "no, don't call me that. i'm not your trainer anymore. sans is fine."

After a brief moment of consideration, CU-270 replies, |AS YOU WISH.|

Casual, but with a serious undertone, Sans asks "what'd you do to the kiddo?"

CU-270 becomes somewhat scared. His eyes go black in fear, and he hopes he didn't do something wrong.
|I MARKED THEM, TO KEEP THEM FROM DYING.|

Sans sighs in relief, then sternly says, "you should've asked, bud. don't do anything to someone without asking, it isn't good."

Expecting punishment, CU-270 quickly steps back and takes on a defensive posture.

Calmly, Sans reassures him, "hey, it's ok... i'm not gonna hurt you. just means i've gotta talk to the kiddo 'bout it."

CU-270 relaxes a bit, then asks, |WHAT ABOUT HEALING SOMEONE WHEN THEY ARE UNCONSCIOUS?|

To which Sans replies casually, "yea, healing should be fine. but nothing else, got it?"

After nodding in understanding, CU-270 returns to the VOID as Sans turns to leave the room.

 

With their chores, and the lesson on why they shouldn't pick up dangerous items, done, Frisk goes to their mom's study.

Frisk can hear talking inside the room, they decide to wait outside the door... but they like snooping, so they listen in.

Toriel is speaking. "(-was a wonderful child to have and look after.)"

A brief pause...

Toriel speaks again. "(Mrs. Addams-)"

"(Please, call me Marceline. Any friend of Frisk's is a friend of mine.)"

"(As you wish... Marceline, everything I have talked about so far, leads up to this...)"

She hesitates.

"(Yes?)"

"(Pardon... I... We have asked Frisk to be our ambassador, however... they are just a child. They should be able to enjoy their childhood.)"

"(I agree, but if Frisk-)"

"(I apologise for the interruption, but I am not done... I want to know if you are willing to take this position with Frisk, until they are older.)"

"(Oh, I see, you wish for me to be an ambassador as well?)"

"(Yes, if you would not mind. I feel like Frisk needs someone to advise them.)"

Frisk enters the room, but remains quiet.

"I would love to take on the role of advisor and ambassador, Queen Toriel."

"Please, call me Toriel."

The ladies smile at each other briefly.

Now that they're done talking, Frisk asks, "I'm done with sweeping the hallway. Can we go speak with the Elder now?"

Marceline looks to Frisk and says, "yes, go get your father and we will head out."

Frisk nods and runs off, more serious than excited...

Upon arrival to their father's office, they see Sans chatting with him.

Frisk's father looks at them briefly as he finishes speaking to Sans, "thank you, Sans, I'll keep an eye out. Anything else?"

Sans replies casually, as always, "nope."

Conrad stands up from his desk and offers his hand to Sans, who accepts it. A joy buzzer goes off.

Upon realization of what happened, Conrad grabs Sans above the elbow and shakes his hand a little more vigorously, exclaiming,
"Hah! A joy buzzer, classic! I like you're style Sans."

Sans' face lights up a bit.

With the brief interaction done, Sans turns to leave as Conrad sits back down.

Frisk thinks about asking Sans about the magic CU-270 used, but Sans speaks first.

"Hey, kiddo. Gotta talk to you about what happened earlier, it can wait though. See ya at dinner."

He continues walking out and closes the door behind him, leaving Frisk confused and a little worried.

As Frisk approaches their father's desk, he anticipates their purpose. "All done?"

Frisk nods.

Conrad finalizes the document he's working on and stands up again, then says, "All right, we are going to be bringing the Dreemurrs with us so they can discuss integration with the village."

Frisk nods and excitedly says "Okay!"

They go back to Marceline's study to get Toriel and Marceline, then get Asgore from the Greenhouse.

After they leave the manor, Frisk looks for their SAVE point outside the gates... there isn't one. They still can't access them.

Not wanting to get too side-tracked, Frisk starts to think more about what they're going to talk about.

Some humans along the path move out of the way in fear when they see Asgore and Toriel.

Stones begin being thrown, and, in response, Asgore picks up Frisk and uses his massive form to protect them from stray rocks.

Several humans yell out harsh phrases as the group continues to the town hall, "Go back to the mountain! How dare you come here?! Do ya really think yoo can attack us, then walk a'round like nothin' happened?! Put tha kid down, mon'ster! Stop using 'em as a shield! YOU DAMN ADDAMSES! SHOULD'VE KNOWN YOU'D SIDE WITH MONSTERS!"

But the group ignores them.

When Bernard catches up with the group, the angry humans appear less often. He speaks to Conrad, "Going to speak to the Elder?"

Who replies, "yes, Frisk learned that a Forest is headed towards the village. We need to prepare."

Bernard scratches his grey beard as he considers this information...
"I see. I'll be in the training grounds preparing for the... funeral. Let me know the results."

Conrad simply nods, and Bernard departs to the training grounds as they approach the town hall.

Frisk is curious who the funeral is for, but they don't get a chance to ask... They decide that might be for the best.

The group enters the town hall, and the humans within begin to panic when they see the large boss monster enter with Frisk.

Frisk gets Asgore's attention and indicates for him to put them down.

Once standing on their own two feet, Frisk says, "Calm down, they don't want to hurt you. They're big, fluffy, and nice!"

Asgore speaks as Frisk looks up at to him and gives a subtle smile, "Howdy! I'm Asgore Dreemurr, King of Monsters. We are here to speak to you about monsters assisting and integrating with the village."

Toriel curtsies, and adds, "I am Toriel... Dreemurr. Queen of Monsters."

Then Frisk speaks up again, "Also, I saw a huge forest headed this way... uh... while we were flying in that aircraft yesterday!"

Still on edge, the lady at the desk slowly stands and introduces herself to Asgore and Toriel. "U-uhm... H-hello Asgore, Toriel. My name is... S-Stacy. I'm the head of resource m-management... I-it sounds like you want to s-speak with the elder... but I don't think I c-can let you do that... Sorry."

She's struggling to maintain her calm demeanour.

Marceline bends down to whisper something to Frisk, who then says, "That is fine Stacy, the Dreemurrs are here more for... fort... no wait..."

She stoops again to whisper something, and Frisk continues,
"as a formality. My mom, dad, and I... The Addamses, will be representing monsters as their Ambassadors."

Conrad shrugs to himself, having not been informed beforehand about his participation... but he doesn't object.

Stacy looks a bit more at ease. She asks, "where will the Dreemurrs be staying in the mean time?"

Frisk contemplates this for a moment, but Toriel speaks up. "We can stay in the lobby, if that is alright with you?"

Stacy nods, and says "T-that will be fine. P-please come with me, Mr. and Mrs. Addams."

Not wanting to be left out, Frisk clears their throat loudly.

Flustered, Stacy adds, "r-right! Sorry... You too Frisk..."

The three walk with Stacy into the back rooms, while Asgore and Toriel try to make themselves comfortable on opposite sides of the lobby.

They expected to go in and talk with the elder, but there are others in the room too; it's more like a council of Elders, rather than one.

The room is very round. On the far side is a large table where seven people are sitting. In the middle is an old man wearing red robes, and on each side there are three people in white robes and masks. The room is dim, due to it being lit by candles, but still feels welcoming. Near the front of the room is a smaller table, with four seats, and in the middle of the room is a large space with a rug. A small table with papers and in inkwell sits to the side of the room near the door, Stacy sits there.

Marceline notices Frisk's confusion, and whispers to them.
"In the middle, in the red robe, is the Elder, the six around him in white robes are his counsellors."

Frisk nods, now less confused.

Conrad and Marceline stand in front of the table, waiting to be told that they may be seated.

Stacy sits at her desk, moves a few papers and introduces them to the Elder, "Elder, the Addamses request to speak with you on behalf of the monsters, they also have information about an incoming threat."

The Elder nods, "I will speak with you, Addams family, please be seated."

Conrad and Marceline bow slightly and Marceline says, "Thank you, Elder," as they sit at the table. Frisk mimics them.

The Elder speaks up again, "let us discuss the matter of the incoming threat first, what information do you have?"

Marceline looks to Frisk, who says "a large forest is headed this way, being chased by a really big creature. I believe they will arrive by the fifth of April, but it could be sooner."

One of the counsellors ask, unconvinced and a little demeaning,
"and where, mischievous child, did you get this information? Our scouts have not even reported back yet."

Frisk, offended, begins to speak, but Marceline stops them and speaks in a cold, subtly menacing way, "Frisk Addams was chosen by the Monster King and Queen to be the ambassador for monsters, and I am their advisor... but it appears you require an advisor as well. I will advise you to not speak to the Ambassador in such a demeaning tone. As for where they got the information, they spotted the forest while they and the Monster's contact party were flying from mount Ebott in their aircraft. As well as having experienced it first hand before performing a RESET, due to the terror they experienced."

Frisk is surprised that their mother knew that, they don't remember telling her. 'Perhaps one of the monsters, or Tim, told her?'

The counsellors speak amongst themselves and with the elder in hushed voices.

While they do so, Frisk quietly asks their mother, "where did you learn about that?"

To which she quietly replies, "Tim got us up to speed after breakfast, darling. Even told us that you can use magic, I'm very proud!"

Another counsellor speaks up, this voice is deeper, "SAVING, LOADING, and RESETTING is no longer possible, not since the barrier went up; why do you think the Red Sage died? Are you truly claiming that you have access to SAVES? That kind of power doesn't reappear over night! Humans can't even use magic anymore."

Marceline whispers something into Frisk's ear, and they say "Yes. Ever since I fell into the Underground of Mt.Ebott, I've had access to that power. Before the RESET, I, along with a monster who will remain unnamed, broke the barrier. Later today the scouts will return with the same report I'm giving you about the beasts. If we don't act now, it'll be too late. They're being chased by something even larger, and we need to get ready for it."

They speak amongst themselves again for several minutes...

Yet another counsellor speaks up, this one sounds female and proper.
"Frisk Addams, the claim you are making about being able to RESET is quite serious. How do you intend to prove it?"

Frisk looks to their mother with concerned, unsure eyes.

Marceline smiles with her usual subtle, mysterious, and mischievous smile, then whispers "show them what a witch can do, little angel."

Frisk knows that, this time around, they won't be able to keep their magic a secret from the village, so they nod to their mother and say,
"I can prove it to you with a demonstration of what I have learned so far, of magic."

The counsellors look to eachother again, speaking less quietly this time.

They sound insulted, and one replies "we know your tricks Frisk, they are not magic, stop wasting-"

But the Elder will have none of it. "Silence, counsellor. I believe it is my decision as to whether or not Frisk may perform a demonstration."

The one who spoke out begins muttering to himself...

Kindly, the Elder speaks to Frisk. "Frisk Addams, though I am aware of your past pranks... including the illegal use of scavenged fireworks in a guard's helm... I am willing to see your demonstration. Please, step into the center of the room so we may see it clearly; but know that if you are indeed planning on playing an elaborate trick, there will be consequences."

Frisk nods and stands up. Once in the center of the room, Frisk takes a moment to clear their mind and decide what they're going to show them... Frisk thinks about making a purple spear, but decides that might not put the monsters in a favourable light...

Seeing the candles gives Frisk an idea... They can't make anything with cyan magic, but they can use cyan magic to make a light breeze in a small room... They focus, gather the magic they need, and wave their arm across the room in front of them. A warm breeze puts out the candles and scatters a few loose papers.

With the room now dark, Frisk calls out their SOUL; it's red glow is the only thing visible in the room now.

Matter-of-factly, Frisk states, "my pure red SOUL is all the proof I need."

With the demonstration over, Frisk puts their SOUL back, summons and carefully splits a small fire into small beads, and sends them slowly over to the candles to relight them.

Frisk returns to their seat, proud of themself. Marceline rubs Frisk hair with a sly, proud, smile.

The counsellors are looking at Frisk in disbelief, unable to speak, while the Elder looks in awe and joy. No one has seen magic for about 52 years, and most of those who have are nearly dead now. The Elder is one of the few survivors who has seen Magic first hand.

Breaking the silence, the Elder says, with a tinge of happiness,
"I expected you to do something a bit flashier, Frisk. You have grown quite a bit, haven't you?"

To which Frisk nods with a subtle smile.

The Elder looks to his counsellors, then to Stacy, and says "I believe we have been given enough proof, Stacy, please make note. We will prepare as soon as this meeting is over. I believe there is something else the Addamses are here to discuss?"

Stacy breaks her eyes away from Frisk to look at the Elder, then says,
"Y-yes, they are here to speak on behalf of the Monsters. King Asgore and Queen Toriel are in the lobby."

Curious, since he has not read any of the reports yet, the Elder asks, "why are you having such esteemed guests sit in the lobby?"

To which Conrad answers, "when Frisk and the monsters arrived by aircraft, it took the guards at the gate by surprise. Johnathan attacked the monsters shortly after Anthony left to get backup, so, when backup arrived, they joined in. They were under the false assumption that the monsters attacked first. I would like to add that the official report does not mention that, because of their actions, Frisk was shot with an arrow and almost died. It is only because of the monster's ability to use healing magic that they are alive."

Some light murmuring in the room follows his statement, the Elder looks to Stacy, who says, "He... he is correct. The updated report says that Johnathan attacked them unprovoked... I... I didn't know that Frisk was hurt though... I will get the monsters from the lobby."

Stacy leaves to get the two monsters, when she arrives, only Toriel enters the room.

Asgore has to stay in the lobby, since he's too large to enter.

If the building is ever remade to the old human standards, Asgore won't have as much trouble.

The Elder stands as Toriel enters the room, and gives a brief bow. "Queen Toriel, It is an honour to finally meet you."

Toriel curtsies and replies, "I am thankful you will have me. May I state my request?"

With the counsellors all wrapped up in their own world, talking amongst each other about what the return of monsters could mean, the Elder is having to take a more active role. Not that he minds.

He replies, "of course, please, make yourself comfortable," and gestures to the chair next to Frisk.

With another brief curtsy, Toriel sits and begins speaking in a proper and regal voice. "The Monsters of the Dreemurr kingdom request to provide aid and integrate with the humans of..." Then realises she never got the name of the Village.

Frisk whispers into her ear and she continues, "Pardon, as I was saying, with the humans of Stag Hill village. Due to the imminent attack, we find that humans and monsters have a better chance of surviving if we work together."

Adding to her statement, Frisk says,
"if we don't work together, which, according to my history class, is the entire reason this village exists, then we will all die. Again."

Curious, the female sounding counsellor asks,
"Frisk, I am wondering, how did you get into contact with the monsters? And through what means did you, a child, take the barrier down?"

But the Elder waves her off, saying, "that is not important right now. Frisk is correct, this village was founded because we had hoped monsters would be able to leave the mountain one day and work with us to fix the wrongs of the past. Now that the time has finally come, I am not going to let that slip away because of some misguided assumptions, and a single incident."

One of the counsellors speaks up, "but what if they are wrong? Even if they did experience the beasts killing everyone, what if it does not happen the same way? Or at all? We will be wastin-"

Marceline retorts, "setting up defences in this world is not a waste of time or resources, unless you enjoy living defenceless. In which case, I advise you get off my property and live in the wilderness."

The counsellors all start to fuss loudly...

The Elder speaks after raising his hands to silence the counsellors, trying to maintain order, "It is as I said, we will begin full preparations as soon as the meeting has adjourned. Toriel, you may speak with Stacy after the meeting to arrange and plan out how monsters will be integrating with the village."

Toriel rises and gives a brief bow, "Thank you, Elder." Then sits back down.

Wrapping up the meeting, the Elder asks, "any other business?"

Marceline looks to Frisk, who looks to Toriel and then to the Elder and says "nope!"

She then whispers something to Frisk, who corrects themself, "I mean, No, Elder. There is nothing else."

The Elder smiles sweetly at Frisk and nods, happy that a youth is taking an interest in government affairs and keeping the peace.
"Very well then, I will send Stacy out soon. There are some things I must discuss with her first."

Marceline, Conrad, and Toriel stand and curtsy briefly before leaving, Frisk does the same afterwards.

On their way out, Marceline suggests, "perhaps we should take on a monster secretary, to assist with managing the schedule, keeping records in order, and receiving/sending messages to be relayed to us? That would help maintain order when we are both busy, and help include monsters more as well."

Frisk nods in agreement and suggests, "the hand-monster receptionist for the MTT resort might be interested in being our secretary, seeing as they are out of a job now. I'll ask them later."

Marceline adds, "we will need them to move into the manor, because we are going to be working from home. It's best to keep them close by."

Frisk nods.

 

While Asgore, Frisk, Marceline, and Conrad leave to the manor, Toriel stays in the Town hall to speak with Stacy.

Asgore would have stayed, but his large form is too intimidating right now.

On the way home, Frisk asks Asgore if he can give them a piggy-back ride. He agrees, happily.

Being able to see over the tops of buildings is fun, they can see all the little people running around and doing stuff. They also see preparations for a funeral... They wonder who it's for, they don't remember a funeral last time. Frisk decides not to ask, lest it ruin their mood.

When at home, Frisk decides to spend time with Asgore. His task, his sacrifice, worries Frisk.

They want to spend as much time with him as possible.

Frisk and Asgore tend to the garden, play catch outside, and then leave the manor grounds to see Frisk's friends.

Most of which are guards and other authority figures... The other kids think Frisk is kinda weird.

They wanted to introduce Asgore to Katsuro, but they can't find him.

One of the guards said he was sent to the Sanctum, and they aren't sure when he'll be back.

While spending time with Asgore out in public, to show humans how fluffy and nice he is, Frisk spots Flowey diving below the ground in the distance occasionally. They hope he's OK.

Frisk is entertained by the looks on people's faces, as they ride on one of Asgore's shoulders and play with his hair and floppy ear.

While inducing panic, chaos, and confusion through simple and sweet acts, the two pass Toriel and Bernard, who are headed to the Manor.

Toriel giggles at the sight of Asgore's hair partially braided... He smiles back, unaware of this fact.

As it begins to get late, Frisk asks to see where the monsters are staying, and Asgore obliges; happy to spend more time with them.

The monster's temporary home is very close to the village, so it doesn't take them long to see the green barriers that make up the defensive walls. Frisk is impressed with it, but also feels a little sad due to the lack of buildings.

It isn't a particularly large area, and there's barely any privacy, but most of the monsters don't seem to care. They're happy to breathe in the fresh forest air of the Surface. Many of the monsters are organizing things and seem to be preparing to build houses.

Frisk spots who they're here for, and runs over to them, asking, "Excuse me? I'm Frisk Addams, Ambassador for Monsters. We're looking for a monster secretary, would you like to work for us? You'd need to move to the manor, but everything will be provided for you."

The hand monster doesn't even ask what it will be doing, they just accept the position. "Of course I would, dear! With my job at the MTT resort over, I need other work to do, and I really enjoy being able to help where ever I can. I'm quite... handy you could say. Also, I'm not fond of... 'roughing it,' so even just a room with a bed sounds very nice."

Frisk giggles at the pun. They didn't expect that. "Well then, please follow us. May I have your name?"

The hand monster curtsies briefly as she says, "I'm Dahn Thing, but I prefer to be called Thing."

Happily, Frisk says,
"alright, please follow us to the manor, Thing. We can talk about your duties on the way, and later you can talk to my dad about your pay."

 

At the manor, Papyrus is in the kitchen... cooking; at least, he's trying to. No one knows he's in there, and Marceline hasn't shown him where everything is... He's trying to find ingredients.

Conrad and Marceline are in the conservatory, where her more sensitive plants are being grown, looking out into the twilight sky through the window in the roof.

Toriel is reading books in the living room, sitting comfortably in a chair near the fireplace.

Alphys is panicking in the lab with the Artifact, as Undyne tries to help while also trying to keep her calm.

She's trying to find some way to keep Asgore from having to trap himself with that... thing.

Just the memory of the glimpse Tim gave them after breakfast sends shivers through her.

Trying to find a way to activate it remotely has returned no results, the Artifact will only respond to SOULs...

She's currently testing to see if the dimensional box technology can be used to take things from within the barrier.

...As soon as she figures out how to get the Artifact generate a small barrier.

Simply asking it to make a small barrier isn't enough, because it wasn't designed to produce one as small as Alphys needs.

Undyne is assisting her by moving parts around, and giving her encouragement.

Sans is relaxing... while thinking furiously about how to find David's Phylactery, and how to help CU-270. He isn't a licensed professional, but there doesn't seem to be any of those anymore. At least, not in the village... 'maybe the Sanctum will have someone who can help?'

He doesn't trust CU-270, at all, but he does trust his own training.

Despite the fact that CU-270 doesn't give much in way of facial expressions or body language, he isn't much different than a book for Sans; his eyes give him away. Sans is glad they never managed to teach him how to control them.

Sans hopes to figure out how to talk to CU-270 in a way that wont cause him to run off, and potentially ruin everything.

His usual methods won't work. If he tried intimidating CU-270 like he was going to do with Frisk, it would be taken to the extreme...

...Everyone is unaware of the imminent catastrophe in the kitchen.

 

When Frisk returns with Asgore, and their potential new secretary "Thing," they give her a tour of the house; including a warning about traps.

In the conservatory, Thing meets Conrad and Marceline, and Conrad shows her where she will be sleeping.

Though it's not normal for Secretaries to live with their employers, the current situation requires it.

Frisk hopes she'll become a part of the family.

When they reach the kitchen, they discover Papyrus trying to find ingredients.

Since the tour is over, Thing excuses herself so she can get comfortable... being painfully aware of Papyrus' cooking... "skills."

The ingredients he has out will make quite a foul dish, should they be combined.

Deciding to help, Frisk suggests, "Hey dad, why don't you go get mom and we can all cook with Papyrus? He isn't used to human cooking. Oh, maybe even get Toriel! She makes the BEST pies! ...Even snail ones."

Intrigued by the idea, Conrad says "that sounds wonderful! I'll be right back," and leaves to get Marceline and potentially Toriel.

With Conrad getting backup, Frisk begins showing Papyrus where everything is.

Frisk warns Papyrus, "dad likes to keep things in the kitchen a certain way. Mom cooks a lot on her own, but that's because she lost a bet with dad. Normally they cook together."

Conrad arrives with Marceline after a few minutes, but without Toriel.

Upon seeing the lack of Toriel, Frisk curiously asks, "Did Toriel not want to cook with us?"

Shaking his head, Conrad replies, "no, I decided to let Toriel be, she's napping in the living room."

The thought of Toriel falling asleep in a chair while reading brings fond memories back to Frisk's mind, they're tempted to go nap with her.

Frisk resists the temptation, however, because cooking is at hand.

Showing off, Frisk uses fire magic to light the stove... Marceline is proud to have a little witch in the family.

As per usual, Conrad mostly goofs off while helping. His first serious task ends with him challenging Frisk to a duel with a carrot.

Though he doesn't fully understand at first, it doesn't take Papyrus long to figure out the weird human custom of playing with food.

Marceline takes over most of the cooking, doing her best to show Papyrus the proper way to cook spaghetti.

Papyrus learns quickly. He loves cooking, and learning a new way to cook is always fun.

While Marceline and Papyrus make Spaghetti, Frisk and Conrad make the garlic bread... or, they kind of make garlic bread... While not play fighting with the bread knives, or the bread... It's a miracle that they manage to get it done at the same time as the spaghetti.

Cooking with their parents, and Papyrus, has really helped ease Frisk's mind and lift some stress off their shoulders.

When the meal is ready, Marceline calls everyone to the dining room.

Frisk leaves to get Toriel personally, saying "she's probably too asleep to wake up from the call."

Half an hour passes with Frisk supposedly going to get Toriel... so Marceline goes to fetch them both.

The temptation to curl up on Toriel's lap and nap with her was too great for Frisk to resist... Toriel is awake now, but Frisk is asleep.

Marceline almost decides to bring dinner to Toriel, due to seeing such a cute and sweet scene, but food is best eaten in the dining room.

With everyone present, the atmosphere in the dining room is much less tense than it has recently been.

Conrad and Sans have taken a liking to eachother, exchanging puns and pranks, while Toriel and Marceline have taken a liking to eachother, exchanging facts about various things (but mostly snails).

Asgore attempts to keep to himself, but Undyne wont let him.

They reminisce about all the whacky things Undyne did when she was younger, like when she thought that the elder puzzler was stealing the block... so she tried to beat him up... but she couldn't get past his puzzle.

Papyrus and Alphys speak with Thing, hoping to get to know the newest addition to the manor.

Frisk thinks something is missing though... A certain shy ghost is less present than he used to be. Frisk wonders how Napstablook is doing.

When dinner wraps up, and Frisk sneaks out of cleaning, they go to their room and talk to Chara about their day.

Even though Chara can't respond, Frisk has a feeling that they can still see and hear. They don't want Chara to feel like they're alone... it also helps to be able to talk about all the weird stuff that happened.

Frisk doesn't want to scare their parents by talking about their latest near-death experience, so that leaves Sans and Chara...

But Sans is hard to find... So that just leaves Chara.

When bedtime rolls around, Frisk completes their usual bed-time routine. Including setting up traps this time.

Frisk wants to maintain their superb reaction time.

As Frisk lays down for the night, they feel peaceful. Despite everything, they are OK. They feel like everything will be OK.

* Seeing their parents get along with their friends again fills Frisk with Determination.

* A STRANGE FEELING PERVADES THE VOID.

Chapter Text

Alphys' Cell reads: 2:35 P.M. November 14th, 4033| No Messages

She has yet to adjust her phone to match Surface time... but she knows that it's pretty late...

Looking up to the clock hanging on the wall reveals that it's actually 3 A.M...

Undyne left two hours ago to get sleep... Alphys has been opting out of sleeping for an hour and a half now.

She can't get any sleep... 'How could I possibly sleep, knowing that Asgore is going to sacrifice himself??'

Furiously working, trying to find some way to stop him from this sacrifice... has brought no results. With the barrier segments removed, the rest of the Artifact can take the barrier down remotely... but it can't activate it remotely. The Artifact takes the barrier down remotely through means that Alphys does not understand...

At first Alphys thinks that she can use the artifact to disrupt the flow of magic to the arcane patterns that power the barrier, but now she's not so sure. Her idea is to activate the barrier, disrupt the flow of magic to prevent it from forming, then set the Artifact down and remotely stop the disruption, allowing it to form the barrier without anyone present... But the Artifact doesn't have an unlimited supply of magic, so she can't just make a full sized barrier to test her theories... In fact, it needs to be recharged before they can use it to make another barrier.

'Frisk will definitely need to help, they have the most DT, right? Then we can get the magic we need from monsters... and everything will be OK... It'll all be OK... Right?'

Sighing in defeat, Alphys moves on to her other important project... Fixing, and improving, the Aircraft.

The rough landing made it unsafe to fly in, so it'll fall apart if they try to use it.

'The aircraft needs to be upgraded...'

Alphys falls asleep at her work desk in the manor's lab.

When breakfast rolls around, Undyne comes to get her.

Alphys, however, doesn't feel like eating breakfast. She grabs some bread, and goes to the backyard where the aircraft is sitting.

She works herself to sleep, again...

Undyne carries Alphys to her room and tucks her in.

'What a nerd... My nerd... I'm gonna have to give her a talk about taking care of herself.'

Undyne decides to take it upon herself to try... finding someone who can fix the aircraft. She can't do it, because she isn't a nerd.

She goes to the temporary monster camp, and finds some engineer monsters who are available to help.

 

Frisk's Cell reads: 9:00 A.M. March 27th, 2045 | No Messages

Today, Frisk feels happy; they're not entirely sure why, but don't want to question it.

Since they already know some of the answers for today's school work, they finish quickly. They look for Asgore to spend some time with him.

He's in the greenhouse on the side of the manor... as expected.

Seeing Frisk enter, Asgore greets them, "Howdy Frisk! Here to help again?"

Frisk nods.

Cheerily, he replies "I appreciate your help, and company, Frisk! Will you help prune the vines?"

Frisk nods happily.

Pruning the creeping vines is their favourite part, after they're fed, at least.

Asgore hands them a pair of pruning scissors and they get to work.

While helping, Frisk starts talking about Katsuro. They're worried about him, and want to give Asgore a good impression for when they see him at the Sanctum; or if he comes back to visit.

Excitedly, they say, "Katsuro and I are not allowed to be left alone anymore, we always get in trouble!"

Curious, Asgore asks, "oh? What kind of trouble?"

With a mischievous grin, Frisk replies, "we would prank the other guards by switching around helmets, putting weird things in their boots and gloves, and sometimes we would even give them fake sandwiches made with saw dust... heheh..."

Asgore smiles sweetly at them, and says, "Sounds very mischievous, at least no one gets hurt. I am glad you have such a good friend, Frisk. I hope to meet him some day."

Happily, Frisk says, "He's at the Sanctum, so if we ever go there you can meet him!"

While pruning the vines, occasionally humming to themself, Frisk's mood darkens as they recall what Asgore has to do; and as they realize that he may never meet Katsuro...

Frisk finishes pruning, and places the scissors in their holder on the wall.

They go to Asgore and hug his leg tightly, and sadly say, "Asgore, you don't have to sacrifice yourself. I'm sure Alphys could find a way to keep you from having to do that... we could go and ask her!"

Asgore lifts Frisk up and holds them, knowing that kneeling down wouldn't be as effective, and says, "I am very grateful for your concern, little one. Alphys has been trying to find a way to activate the barrier remotely, but she has not found anything yet... Eventually we will have to stop searching for a way out, and accept the consequences. Everything will be alright, Frisk. It's time for me to be brave..."

Frisk wraps their arms around Asgore's neck as much as they can, and they hold back their tears.

 

* WATCHING FROM WITHIN THE VOID, CU-270 CONTEMPLATES THEIR CONVERSATION.

CU-270 does not understand why Frisk is crying. They were never physically harmed, so why cry?

What is the point of crying? It is to show pain, is it not?

It must be something else. Their face doesn't make sense to CU-270. It is all scrunched up and... sad?

CU-270 wonders if, perhaps, their crying is in advance of pain to come. Frisk has been spending a lot of time with Asgore, and the other monsters appear to become sad when they see him. They must be worried that he is ill or will die soon, which is strange since he is a perfectly healthy boss monster... Perhaps he has taken on a dangerous role in the efforts to stop the "Gibbering Horror?"

Something can be done about that, but CU-270 does not yet know what. They cannot protect Asgore's SOUL like they are Frisk's. Asgore would die from DT overload, and since Frisk's DT is at similar levels as CU-270's, neither they nor CU-270 can SAVE or LOAD should something bad happen. It is inconvenient all around.

CU-270 decides that he has observed the humans and monsters in this area for long enough now.

Passive observation from within the void will only get him so far, since he cannot read their minds or interact with them. He is not excited about the prospect of interacting with humans, but the "Addams" family appears to be quite "nice." Perhaps they would be a good integration point.

Sans has been trying to help CU-270 "integrate with society."

But CU-270 does not feel ready...

Sans says that spending some time observing the "Addams" from the shadows will help him...

Deciding that he cannot be cautious of humans forever, CU-270 leaves the comfort of the void. He appears within the dark spare room that he has claimed as his own.

CU-270 still doesn't like the feeling of reality on his skin, in his ears, or in his eyes. The sounds are grating, the feeling on his skin is uncomfortable, and the light is blinding.

Carefully moving through the manor, he avoids "bed rooms," because Sans has informed him that it is bad to go into rooms with beds in them, without being invited. Why it is bad to enter rooms with beds in them is unknown to CU-270.

Deciding to observe the human known as "Conrad" first, CU-270 takes position in a small dark corner.

Sans said that Conrad would be the best human to start with since he is usually busy reading documents, or practising medical procedures, that require his full attention. Such things are typical for humans that wear suits. They are always reading something, or bossing people around.

The humans wearing suits are the ones who the scientists had to listen to, so perhaps Conrad is one of them. If he is, watching him may grant insight for why they have so much power over others.

After a few minutes of observation, however, CU-270 is bored of the human known as "Conrad." Why he is not addressed as "Dr. Addams" like the doctors and scientists in the Lab is unknown to CU-270. Seems like the people who wear suits are just as boring as the scientists and doctors.

He decides that "Frisk" would be a better subject to observe.

Being physically present will also allow CU-270 to directly prevent their vessel from being damaged.

He will have to hide himself from Sans, however, as Sans specifically instructed him to observe Conrad first, for at least a week, if he were to begin personal observation.

But that is fine. CU-270 was designed for stealth...

CU-270 goes to the ruins of a large human city, and looks for clothing similar to the clothing the humans on "Stag hill" wear. He also looks for an appropriate accessory that can hide his significantly not-human eyes.

None of the surviving false eyes will work, so the best he can do is a piece of cloth to make it appear as though he is blind. The attire CU-270 chooses is also significantly not normal. He opts for a more classical "ninja" style. Which is to say... clothing that is not restrictive, allows him to blend, and covers most of his important details such as his face, ears, and eyes.

For pants, he finds some dark green pants with large pockets on the legs, and has a pair of dark blue sweat pants for night-time observation. Gaster often wore sweat pants when he felt sick.

For a shirt, he finds a plain brown tee shirt for normal observation, and a dark blue "turtle neck..." Gaster enjoyed "turtle neck" shirts. CU-270 wonders when he will see Gaster again.

CU-270 will have to be careful. If Sans saw all the humans in the village before the RESET, he will stick out like a sore thumb due to the lack of a "Déjà Vu" response. To mask this, he will need something Sans has seen, but doesn't know he has seen... The best choice for that is to steal something from one of the villagers... CU-270 can give it back later.

CU-270 considers getting a hooded jacket... and decides that a jacket would not be a bad idea, but wearing the hood constantly would make him look too suspicious. He decides it would be best to take a jacket from one of the villagers, as the ones in the ruined city are too well-made.

A face mask will be important too, but anything not made entirely out of roughly stitched cloth will stick out. He finds a long piece of off-white fabric wrapped around a mannequin's neck. It looks good enough.

He cuts a piece of the fabric to cover his eyes with. Those he has seen who are blind are usually given cloth that is a similar colour to their skin. Most likely to give the impression that they lack eyes.

CU-270 opts out of getting shoes, his bare feet are quieter than any shoe he can find. Some socks would not hurt, though.

After scavenging for some dark blue gloves, CU-270 returns to Stag Hill from the unknown desolate city and double checks to ensure the clothes he scavenged will blend in well enough. He then realizes that he didn't pay enough attention to the clothes the villagers wear. He will have to steal an entire outfit, because none of their clothes are stitched as well as the clothes he found. At least the clothes he got for night-time observation don't need to match.

CU-270 opts to keep his jumpsuit and armour on for now and leaves the clothes in the void. He needs to double check the Addams' clothing and he can't have unknown factors, like what noise the clothing makes, interfere with his stealth.

Breaking the bazaar taboo of not entering rooms with beds in them, CU-270 enters Conrad and Marceline's room and goes to examine the clothing stored in their closet.

Upon entering their dark closet, he sees a large number of suits and dresses, and various other articles of clothing, along the walls. The closet is rather large. There is a fitting area, complete with a mirror, plenty of walking and changing space, and a couple padded stools.

Closer examination of their attire reveals exquisite craftsmanship, comparable to the old clothes from the city. Many of the outfits appear to have been passed down, but it seems like one of the Addamses can sew. This must have been why he thought that the clothes from the ruined city would work. The Addamses have significantly higher quality clothing than the villagers.

Conrad is the most likely candidate to be able to sew, due to his ability to stitch skin together. Since the fabric is delicate, only an equally delicate hand would be able to perform such sturdy yet precise needlework. CU-270 will find out eventually during his observations.

A female voice behind him stops his analysis, it is likely Marceline. "Find what you are looking for?"

CU-270's gut instinct is to teleport away, but he is curious as to how she managed to sneak up on him.

He turns around slowly and looks at the mystery person.

Sure enough, Marceline is standing at the door to the closet. Her slim form appears more imposing than it should. The darkness of the closet is contrasted by a single beam of light, from the bedroom window, that manages to find its way across her face; it's highlighting her eyes, giving her a mysterious look.

CU-270 doesn't detect any sort of magic, nor does he see any technology that could aid her approach. The female human seems to be naturally adept at moving quietly and keeping her presence hidden.

He attempts to speak to her in sign language, |I DO NOT SPEAK 'HUMAN,' WHAT DID YOU SAY?|

In response, she simply raises an eyebrow.

Neither of them understand the other... which is problematic for possible future attempts at communication.

Especially if it is uncommon for humans to understand Sign language or Wing-Dings.

Deciding to play it safe, CU-270 slowly steps backwards into the shadows of the closet and begins to walk into the void...

But Marceline does something he doesn't expect... she turns on the lights in the closet, quickly walks forward, and gently grabs his wrist.

CU-270 is frightened at first, and immediately assumes she is a threat, but her body language is not threatening. He is very confused. Her grip is firm, but gentle. Different than David's.

She speaks more words he cannot understand, they sound calming, but wrong. They have a similar flow to them like when Sans is speaking in Wing-Dings, except the sounds don't make sense.

He tries to teleport out but he is blocked by something. A second analysis still does not reveal magic or technology. Sans must be preventing him from leaving, but where is he?

The world appears to pause for the briefest moment, then understanding fills Marceline's eyes.

Marceline gently pulls CU-270 so that he's standing in front of the mirror on the left side of the room, then waits.

After about a minute, Conrad walks into the room.

CU-270 is sure now that Sans has something to do with what's going on. He still cannot teleport away.

He escapes Marceline's grip and puts distance between them and himself.

Conrad checks to make sure Marceline is OK, then searches through the clothing and pulls out a suit.

He looks back and forth between CU-270 and the suit, then picks out a different one.

CU-270 does not understand exactly what Conrad is doing, but he knows that suits are worn by the people that tell the scientists what to do. That is not good... and this human appears to be showing him that he owns a lot of suits. CU-270 is confused by this.

The people who wear suits always argued with the scientists and doctors, and when that happened CU-270 was hurt more. Are suits somehow linked to power in humans? If so, then perhaps this human is showing CU-270 how much control he has over people?

He hides himself in the darkest corner he can find, and tries to leave into the void... but it's too bright, and he can't use magic to make the room darker.

Feeling trapped, and not fully understanding what is going on, CU-270 begins to panic. His eye-lights go out, exposing his fear. He crouches in preparation to make an escape, bares his teeth, and lets out a deep rumbling growl in warning.

Conrad immediately drops the suit he is examining, then steps in front of Marceline and moves her, and himself, out of the way of the door quickly.

CU-270 takes advantage of the opening and bolts through the door, then runs off to find a dark room.

The spare room he tends to go to is still dark.

Darkness is safety... darkness leads to the void, the void is safe.

Stepping into the room, CU-270 amplifies the darkness within until his gateway to the void opens and he steps through. CU-270 decides to begin observing humans physically when they are unconscious and pose no threat, that way there is less risk.

* SANS IS ATTEMPTING TO GET HIS ATTENTION, BUT CU-270 IGNORES HIM.

 

Sans contemplates the turn of events, and realizes he shouldn't have let Marceline talk him into that plan. He knew it wouldn't work, but he helped anyway... and now CU-270 is ignoring him.

'this isn't good... how am I gonna fix this? should i even bother trying? guess i'll just hang with grillby for a while... think it over.'

 

Done with tending the plants in the Greenhouse, Frisk asks, "Asgore, could you teach me more about fire magic? I want to be able to control more fire!"

After carefully considering the request, Asgore smiles gently and says, "of course I can, Frisk. Let us go out to the backyard, there is more room out there and less humans to stare at us."

Frisk nods happily.

On their way, they see Marceline walking from her bedroom to her downstairs study.

Frisk decides that it would be fun to have their mom watch as they literally play with fire, so they ask, "hey mom! You wanna watch Asgore teach me more fire magic?"

Intrigued by the idea, and wanting to witness magic up close again, Marceline agrees with a sly smile and follows the two outside.

Once outside, Asgore starts off with basic exercises and safety, then begins guiding Frisk in how to control more fire.

Asgore instructs them, "fire reacts to your Bravery. The more Bravery you add to the flames, the larger they will grow... but be careful not to add too much, or you could accidentally hurt yourself or others. Build your fire up slowly, and be confident in your ability to control it, or it will not listen to you."

Demonstrating, Asgore summons a ring of fireballs. "Remember this, always: 'Approaching a dangerous situation without thinking is not Bravery, it is foolishness.'"

 

After calming down, CU-270 begins watching Frisk from the void again. He wants to understand them, to prevent people from harming them...

He is met with the sight of Asgore summoning a ring of Fire in front of Frisk, and almost immediately attacks... but CU-270 realizes that he is teaching Frisk how to use basic fire magic.

CU-270 continues watching, ready to prevent the inevitable harm that will occur when Frisk fails to produce the desired results.

...But, after an hour passes, nothing bad happens. CU-270 watches Frisk fail on multiple counts, but Asgore and Marceline only respond with patience and... kindness?

Conrad joins the group. CU-270 is wary of his presence, but eager to see how he reacts to Frisk failing...

When Frisk attempts to make a wall of fire, they fail... They are only able to make what amounts to candle lights. CU-270 prepares to strike, in anticipation of danger... but no punishment ever occurs. He doesn't understand... Instead of punishing Frisk, they all... console and encourage them?

CU-270 decides that it must be some sort of psychological manipulation. Those who wear suits are sneaky, they manipulate people into doing what they want. Gaster taught him to keep his distance from them, because they are nothing but trouble. He will need to learn how to speak like the humans do, in order to verify his assumptions.

The fastest way to do that would be to go back to the human lab and utilize the technology there to expedite his learning...

As CU-270 considers that option he hopes that David has left the lab, but after a brief moment, he decides that David would not dare get in his way, so he goes to the lab.

 

Alphys wakes up and is confused at first. The last thing she remembers is working on the aircraft in the backyard...

'Oh no I fell asleep! Gosh dang it... Wait... what day is it?'

She briefly checks her phone and recognizes that it's the same day, just later. '...Oh.... that's fine.'

She leaves her room to check on the aircraft and sees some of the engineer monsters working on it.

A hand is placed on her shoulder and she immediately jolts in surprise, but she calms down when she sees that it's Undyne.

Undyne gently says, "yo, nerd, you've gotta take better care of yourself! I get that there's a lot that needs to be done, but you can't get it all done if you're tired and can't think. So, let other people help... OK?" Then smiles sweetly.

Alphys blushes from the smile, but is uncertain. "I-I... I can't waste any t-time. When Asgore activates the b-barrier... h-... he..." Alphys begins tearing up as she continues, "we c-can't waste any time, we have to do everything ri-right or he-"

Undyne interrupts Alphys with a hug, "I know. But don't worry, everything will work out just fine!"

A big toothy grin stretches across Undyne's face. It puts Alphys a bit more at ease.

Excitedly, Undyne says, "hey, come with me. I've got a surprise for you!"

Reluctantly, and nervously, Alphys follows Undyne through the Addams' yard until they reach...

A picnic, set for two. The two sit down and enjoy the food and a beautiful view of Ebott Forest.

The encounter is somewhat awkward for Alphys, and she doesn't know what to do. She decides to check on the UnderNet for news from the monster camp.

They were able to set up the Antenna in the middle of the village thanks to Toriel's negotiations. It helps that the antenna doesn't take up much space, thanks to the information in the Artifact, otherwise they wouldn't have approved it.

Everything is fine, it seems. 'Grillby already has a new bar set up... Weird, I figured that'd be last?'

When she looks up from her phone, knowing now that everything is going mostly as planned, she spots a small yellow flower in the distance... it appears to have a face.

Alphys starts feeling uneasy about it, and decides to look away... but she looks back briefly to confirm, and it's gone.

She feels even less at ease now, and decides that it would be best to go somewhere else.

"U-Undyne? This is all very nice, but I... I think I should get back to work now. We don't know how much time we have before..."

Somewhat disappointed, but understanding, Undyne replies, "yea..."

More excitedly, she says "Hey, I know! Maybe I could try to help some more? I guess... I could carry more stuff? Oh! I know! I could yell at you when you aren't taking care of yourself! Make you eat and sleep on time! That'd be super helpful!"

Alphys doesn't like the prospect of being yelled at, but... at least Undyne cares about her. "Maybe... Uh... don't yell? Could you... strongly suggest in-instead?"

Undyne puts on a big toothy grin and says, "fine by me!"

The two walk over to the aircraft to work on it more. Alphys wants to upgrade it with sturdier materials.

It could actually be much heavier than they originally made it, given how much thrust it produces, so Alphys wants to outfit it with a metal body.

 

As dinner time slowly approaches, Papyrus begins cooking Lasagna using the instructions Marceline left for him on a note. He's doing his best to follow them exactly, as he normally does.

Papyrus always does his best.

The other monsters think of him as immature, but it's just a front. He's always the best version of himself that they need him to be, whether they know it or not.

His antics mostly revolve around helping everyone, because a good royal guard would do that, but, now that monsters are out of the Underground, the need for his silly immature self is slowly fading... He finds himself taking on a more serious, less boisterous demeanour. Spending time with Conrad has also helped by showing him how to appear as dignified as he truly is, or... believes himself to be.

Thing enters the kitchen and asks to help, and Papyrus graciously accepts.

Since there has been no work for her to do yet, she feels anxious; so she does small things around the house to keep herself busy, like helping cook breakfast and dinner.

She is, however, competing with Papyrus for things to do.

Once everything is cooked to perfection, or cooked exactly as instructed, Papyrus uses the brass pipe system to call everyone to dinner... But most of them are outside, so he goes to fetch them while Thing begins setting the table.

 

Dinner is cooked well. Papyrus proves himself to be a great cook, with some guidance...

Everyone is much more lively today than they have been. Frisk is happy.

Asgore is discussing various gardening techniques with Marceline, while Toriel speaks with Conrad about medicine, and the lack thereof, for monsters.

Sans and Papyrus seem to be talking together about their day, while Alphys and Undyne are being all cuddly.

Frisk decides to chat with Thing. "Hey Thing, how're you feeling so far? All comfortable?"

Politely, Thing replies, "I am very comfortable, Ambassador Frisk. Thank you for asking."

With a smile, Frisk says, "it's funny hearing you call me ambassador... you can just call me Frisk!"

Thing responds cheerily, "if you think that would be OK, then I shall. Thank you."

Frisk finally notices the extra plate set at the table, and asks, "who's plate is that?"

Papyrus responds, "I THOUGHT THAT MAYBE THE MYSTERY SHADOW BOY WOULD LIKE SOMETHING TO EAT! SO I SET A PLATE FOR HIM, JUST IN CASE! SANS, DID YOU WRITE THE NAME CARD LIKE I ASKED YOU TO?"

Sans replies casually, "yup. take a look for yourself."

Papyrus gets up and walks to the end of the table to read the card... he can't understand it.

A bit upset, Papyrus yells out, "SANS!! WHAT IS ALL THIS GOBBLEDYGOOK? I ASKED YOU TO WRITE HIS NAME, NOT PRACTICE YOUR OBVIOUSLY LACKLUSTER DRAWING SKILLS!"

Sans casually replies, "he can't read the same stuff we can paps, those are wingdings."

Frisk notices that Sans has been making less jokes... his casual replies almost feel like a cover for something. Frisk doesn't want to pry though, so they don't say anything... but then they remember that Sans was supposed to talk to them about what happened last night.

"Hey, Sans, you said you were gonna talk to me about something yesterday, didn't you?"

"oh yea, I did, huh? we can talk after dinner."

Frisk continues to eat, and after a few minutes they remember something important. "Thing, could you remind me tomorrow that we need to talk to resource management and ask if they'll let some Vegitoids help with growing crops? We also need to ask about expanding the farms, now that monsters are on the surface. We should also ask if some Water-type monsters, like some Washuas, can assist too."

Thing pulls out a small MTT brand notepad, and jots down the request. "No problem Frisk, anything else you would like me to remind you of?"

Frisk shakes their head, "nope, that's it, thank you Thing!"

Sans looks at Thing and speaks to her in Sign language, |be careful with the kid, they've got a... uh... "guardian angel." he's still getting the hang of the 'other people are nice' thing.|

Thing signs back, |Thank you the warning, Sans. I will make sure to keep from trying to hurt Frisk, who is my employer.|

Sans snickers, and replies, |sarcasm doesn't transfer well through sign language, ya' know. he primarily speaks in sign language, and he's probably watching right now. good luck.|

Thing just shrugs in response, they don't feel particularly worried. Actions speak louder than words.

Done with his meal, Sans gets up, nudges Frisk, and leaves as Frisk looks up.

Frisk finishes their meal quickly and follows him, happy to be able to get out of cleaning up.

Once Frisk is out in the main lobby, they don't see Sans anymore... 'he must've used a shortcut.'

Assuming that Sans went to his room, Frisk goes there and almost opens the door... but stops themself and knocks instead.

Sans answers from behind the door, "(who's there?)"

Feeling playful, Frisk says, "You."

"(*snicker*...you who?)"

"Why are you trying to get my attention, I knocked on your door!"

"(heh... come on in frisk. thanks for knocking.)"

Frisk opens the door to Sans' room and sees him sitting on the edge of his bed.

They decide to stay at the doorway, and ask, "we gonna talk about what happened?"

He gets up and says, "yep."

Curious, Frisk asks, "...So, what did he do?"

Sans walks over to Frisk, and says, "he put a mark on your soul. i don't know exactly what it does, but if you let me take a look i can figure it out."

Frisk nods and reveals their SOUL, it looks perfectly normal.

Carefully, Sans looks at it through a yellow lens. "yep, about what i figured. you can put your soul away now."

Curious, Frisk asks, "so, what does it do?"

As casual as ever, Sans replies "if your soul takes any damage it'll be transferred to his, and, if that is bypassed, it prevents your soul from shattering. it also prevents david from being able to interact with your soul."

Worried about the first part, Frisk says, "it sounds... good. Except maybe that first part. Why would he do this?"

Sans shrugs, "i don't know why he did it, but you have a red soul like he does. so that could be it. oh, there's a side effect... it looks like the dt between your souls is being shared, so i don't think either of you can load, save, or reset. which isn't really bad. since neither of you can die right now, you don't need to save or load."

A bit worried, Frisk asks, "what if we need to RESET?"

With a wink, Sans says "no offence, but i prefer no resets. no time loops, no trying to make everything perfect, and no avoiding consequences. if we do everything right the first time, you won't have to reset... so, how do you feel about the mark? want it taken off?"

Frisk considers the options for a while... On one hand, they don't want anyone to be hurt in their place, on the other... not having the danger of being controlled by David is a great thing.

Before Frisk can say anything, Sans says "i see you're having trouble deciding. if you're worried 'bout him being hurt instead of you, and are wondering if that part can be taken off, it can't be. it's an all or nothin' situation."

After hesitating further... Frisk decides, "I want it removed. I can't let someone else get hurt in my place. I'll just have to be more careful in the future. As for David... we can figure something out."

Sans nods, "ok, i'll let him know soon as he starts talking to me again. i kinda upset him a bit earlier today, but it'll be fine."

Frisk nods and asks, "anything else?"

Sans replies, "nope."

With that, Frisk leaves Sans' room and goes to goof off until bed time. They want to practise their trap making skills.

Eventually Papyrus joins Frisk and begins making puzzles and traps with them.

Together, they create a truly puzzling puzzle. One the likes of which none have seen.

A truly difficult and indescribable puzzle...

Proud of their creation, Frisk and Papyrus set it up in the lobby... then go to bed.

When Frisk enters their room, Chara's SOUL seems to turn towards them. It reminds Frisk that they need to find a way to save Chara and Asriel...
Maybe there's some magic I could learn... best place to learn magic is the Sanctum, but that's pretty far away...'

Frisk thinks about how and when they should go to the Sanctum for a while before covering Chara's container and changing into pajamas.

They realize that if they go to the sanctum, they'll be able to see Katsuro. It makes Frisk happy.

When they lay down and fall to sleep... they start to dream.

 


Outside, Frisk sees Katsuro in his guard uniform. He's waving them over.

They join him with a clearly visible smile, happy to see their best, and weirdest, friend.

Katsuro salutes playfully as Frisk approaches, saying "Your Majesty, I await your orders!"

To which Frisk replies, "Silly Squire, I gave you orders a fortnight ago! You are to teach me the ways of the sword! The ways that Sir Grandpa won't."

Feigning dismay, he throws an arm over his face, while turning away, to exaggerate, as he says, "Alas! My Princess, I am unable to comply!"

Taking on a respectful pose, he continues, "For you see... I dare not disobey the order of my superior, the great Saint Bernard!..."

Frisk puts on a sad face.

Katsuro sees their dismay and raises his finger as he says, "But! BUT! I can, instead, teach you the ways of... TAG! You're IT!"

After swiftly tapping Frisk on the Shoulder, Katsuro runs off with a wide smile on his face.

Frisk chases them down, giggling, but is never able to catch up.
"Not fair! I have tiny little legs and I can't catch up!"

Yelling back, Katsuro says, "C'mon Frisk! You can do it! You'll never be an 'Anime-Warrior-Princess' with that attitude!"

And so they continue to run... and run... It stops being fun after a while, but they continue to run... They leave the village and follow him through the forest... until, eventually, Frisk can no longer see him. Frisk stops running. They're lost, alone, and scared somewhere in the Ebott forest.

They call out for help.

But nobody comes.

They call out again, louder...

Behind them, a familiar voice is heard, it sounds like Tim, but a little younger. "Oh, you poor thing, are you lost?"

Turning around, Frisk sees that it's... 'Tim?' He looks younger than Frisk remembers him being.

Frisk nods, deciding it's just a coincidence.

Tim points, and Frisk looks in the direction he's pointing... They see the training grounds...

Frisk doesn't want to go there though. It makes them feel sad.

When Frisk turns around, there's nothing there. Tim is gone, and everything is white...

As Frisk looks around, the only place left is the training grounds.

Hesitating, Frisk stays in place...

A hand is put on their shoulder. When they look up, they see Katsuro... His armour looks heavily damaged.

Frisk doesn't understand why.

Calmly and happily, he says "hey, there you are... I thought we lost you, you had us all pretty worried ya know. Glad to see you're alright, Frisk... Hey... you OK?"

Frisk shakes their head and points to the training grounds.

Katsuro sighs, and says, "oh, yea, it's pretty sad, huh? But don't worry, these things happen! It isn't your fault... C'mon, let's go. We'll face it together, OK?"

Frisk nods and holds out their hand for Katsuro. He takes their hand and they walk together to the training grounds.

It doesn't take long to get there, and when they do... they see a long wooden box in the middle of the training grounds. It isn't particularly fancy, but it does have some painted designs on it.

Boxes are used when the one being cremated is not presentable enough for anyone to view, the symbols are meant to embody who they were in life. Usually the family of the deceased paints them on before the cremation.

Katsuro kneels on one knee behind Frisk, places a hand on their shoulder gently, and says, "see? It isn't scary. It's just a box. Something edgy vampires named after herbs sleep in... like Mordrid Terragon! right?"

Frisk nods, feeling somewhat better, but tears still come to their eyes.
They don't like what they see...

Continuing, Katsuro says, "don't worry, little princess. It's okay. It is pretty sad though, huh?"

Frisk nods again. Katsuro moves in front of them, still kneeling, uses a finger under their chin to tilt their head up and bring their eyes up to his, and says, "hey, I've gotta go now, OK? I've got a new job, and it's pretty far away... We won't get to goof around together anymore... but it'll be OK. And hey... no matter what... Don't you ever think it was your fault. OK? I should've been more careful... I'm sorry, Frisk. Be good."

Katsuro stands up, now wearing formal attire, ruffles Frisk's hair, and goes to lay in the coffin...

Frisk tries to cry out, tries to grab him and stop him, but they can't. They can't do anything, their words sound distant and quiet. All of their actions feel sluggish, and without force... like their body decided to start going to sleep at the worst possible moment.

The coffin lid slams shut after Katsuro lays down.


 

Frisk wakes up, tears running down their face, and sees Toriel holding them.

Gently, she shushes them and says, "do not worry, little one, it was just a bad dream."

Toriel wipes the tears from Frisk's face, and they give her as much of a hug as possible while trying not to cry more. 'It had to be just a dream, right? Katsuro... he isn't...'

Frisk cries more... They decide not to ask, just in case it's true.

Toriel rocks them back to sleep...

* The desire to make sure all of their friends are safe and happy... FILLS FRISK WITH DETERMINATION!

* FRISK CAN FEEL THEIR SAVE STARS AGAIN.
* FILE FAILED TO LOAD.
* FILE FAILED TO LOAD.
* FILE FAILED TO LOAD.
* A NEW STAR APPEARS IN FRONT OF THE MANOR.
* FILE SAVED.

Chapter Text

In the void, CU-270 tests, through brute force, being able to exit the to a location he is viewing from the void. It takes him several hours, and several failed attempts, but he finally manages to learn how to “Fast Travel.”

Due to this, CU-270 arrives at the secret human laboratory with minimal magic use, and without relying on inaccurate, and potentially faulty, technology.

During his experiments, he also discovers that he can store magic in the void.

Because his flesh and suit blocks out most light, it allows him to maintain a small opening to the void inside his chest, where his SOUL should be. This allows him to expel excess magic into the void for later use. He hopes to find a way to store excess DT in the void as well, but so far he can not.

While approaching the entrance on the island, he uses magic to detect thoughts. He does not detect any within the part of the facility that he can reach with magic, but he keeps his guard up; better safe than sorry.

CU-270 wanders through the shadows of the dim human facility, looking for the device that forcibly taught him how to speak in “R’Lyehian.” He hopes that he will be able to alter it in such a way that it would teach him how to speak the same language as the humans and other monsters.

If it can teach one language, it can teach another; right?

The upper levels of the Lab look much nicer than the lower levels, despite pools of blood, organs, and extremities being scattered here and there. As well as a few piles of dust that are scattered about, preserving the memory of an attack against the humans by the monsters they created.

Large portions of the facility are damaged, and the lower he goes the worse the damage is; some rooms are completely collapsed.

As he makes his way through the labyrinth like facility, he begins recalling various… unpleasant experiences. Unwanted images assault his mind… Images of David and other unknown people with strange devices, prodding at him. Images of strange devices being placed on him, and feeling his life suddenly drain from him until he feels as though he were a breath away from death.

And bright lights… so many lights. All pointing at him, trapping him while they put some strange red substance into him… They call it “Determination,” but to CU-270 it feels more like…

Refusal. Refusal to give in, refusal to stop, refusal to accept the circumstances. Refusal of reality itself.

Such a strong feeling, too. One that calls and speaks to the universe and demands it to change to what the owner desires most. That feeling is his now, but it is shared with another.

He wonders if Frisk was subjected to anything similar to what he was, for them to attain a red SOUL.

The memories and thoughts distract from all the dead humans littered across the floor, torn to pieces, and beaten into literal pulp; causing CU-270 to trip occasionally.

Though the bodies are desiccated now, the flesh still squishes under his rubber coated metal soles in an unpleasant manner. He attempts to avoid walking in, or on, human remains.

CU-270 eventually stops in front of a seemingly inconspicuous door.

The label reads… something that CU-270 does not understand enough to convey a mental image; almost as though something were actively preventing him from understanding.

He forces the door open… but the small square room is empty, with not even a spec of dust within.

It still feels strangely familiar.

Leaving the room, he continues deeper into the facility while instinctively avoiding the red marks on the ground. He is not sure what they are, but he saw someone walk over one of those spots before and turn into an old man. There are also spots on the walls that are… odd.

Some of the metal under those spots is younger than the rest, other parts have vanished completely in strange patterns, and a few are rusted as though they have been underwater for ages.

The lower he goes, the less frequent these anomalies become… And with that, he knows that he is going down too far. Any further and he will go into the “monster” section of the laboratory, and nothing there will help him. All the important equipment was stored with the humans.

He goes up a few levels to the middle level of the facility, hoping to find a specific door that he remembers..

But it turns out to be just another empty room… this one, however, looks like it used to have stuff in it.

Seeing yet another dead-end reduces CU-270’s Determination.

Eventually, he comes across a door with a label that he recognizes distinctly.

It says “Enhanced Training Room,” but he does not really understand what that means.

Entering the room reveals several open, and a few closed, pods.

A few bodies litter the floor as well, but those are not important. The pods in this room are what he has been looking for… now he just has to figure out how to use them.

CU-270’s Determination wavers for a moment… unsure if he will be able to accomplish the task.

A sudden feeling permeates reality, CU-270 detects a change in DT levels from Frisk.

Echoes of Frisk’s previous commands, which are being repeated by the human Lab, finally begin to register to reality now that they are not being blocked by CU-270’s DT.

Desperate to prevent all of his progress from being lost, CU-270 halts time…

The humans built a system that is intended to monitor LOAD and SAVES, and prevent enemies from being able to LOAD or SAVE. There is also a second system intended to hold onto and repeat unsuccessful commands that were not intercepted, until they go through. Without anyone to monitor the first machine, it is allowing all commands automatically; so all commands are being automatically repeated until they go through.

CU-270 knows of these machines due to his training on how to SAVE and LOAD; being informed of them in order to dissuade him from attempting to SAVE or LOAD against orders, since the humans can control whether or not the commands work.

He speaks a command in Truespeech as quickly and precisely as possible.

* ??Thut?Sw?glect???????podsSA???? ??dgr?Qcn????SwFA?????????ZOVloc
kSTO??????AQ??????SAAD??CONST??m undasTo????????RL?queCNULLIdFORz
TlemT??????SDS?A?SDYtj??JyoRN??? morque????TESH?XfnGhsPc???Opleck

Once done with the -incredibly difficult to pronounce- command, CU-270 allows time to continue before he goes unconscious, due to wounds that begin erupting across his body from the backlash of speaking the command. His innate magical healing cannot repair the damage. His physical body is entirely useless now.

Reality obeys his command… and the machinery is altered to deny LOADS from “Frisk” and no longer repeat their commands.

* FILE LOADING
* LOAD INTERCEPTED
* FILE LOADING
* LOAD INTERCEPTED
* FILE LOADING
* LOAD INTERCEPTED

* A NEW SAVE STAR IS APPEARING
* SAVE STAR PERMITTED
* A NEW SAVE STAR HAS APPEARED AT Rx:???.?? Ry:???.?? Rz:???.?? (pi)c+[2374283712]
* FILE SAVING
* FILE SAVE PERMITTED
* FILE SAVED

* ERROR: INCONSISTENCY DETECTED, REPAIRING R.T.M.D. FILE BLACKLIST
* REPAIR COMPLETE, INVALID/INCOMPLETE RESTRICTIONS REMOVED

 

Frisk wakes up to the view and feeling of being in Toriel’s lap, in front of a magically lit fireplace.

They’re in the living room, in Toriel’s chair. She fell asleep while comforting them.

Frisk tries to look at their Cell, but it’s in their room still.

Suddenly, Frisk remembers feeling their SAVE stars again. They look within themself, and, sure enough, they have access again. Some of the feelings they felt last night were strange, though. Frisk isn’t sure how much of their ability they have access to. They can check later.

Toriel begins to stir. She yawns wide and stretches her arms and legs while trying to cover her mouth.

An obstruction on her legs reminds her that she was comforting Frisk. She looks down to see a cute, though subtly sad, face looking back at her.

Frisk pokes Toriel’s snout… “Boop.”

Toriel smiles sweetly and giggles lightly before beginning to tickle Frisk.

Giggling and trying to get away from the tickling fingers, Frisk tries tickling Toriel back, but doesn’t manage to.

With the mood lightened, and worries tickled away temporarily, Toriel stops tickling Frisk and says,
“perhaps it would be best if we went to the dining room for breakfast now.”

To which Frisk nods, hops down from her lap, and begins walking with her to the dining room.

They decide to change out of their pajamas after breakfast.

When the two arrive at the dining room, it appears that breakfast has just started being prepared.

Breakfast feels like it’s being served late, and it seems everyone slept in… weird since it’s a weekday.

Marceline and Conrad don’t appear overly upset, but Frisk can feel a sense of dismay in the room…

They remember that a funeral is supposed to happen soon… they consider asking who the funeral is for, but decide not to in case their dream is proven true… Frisk becomes sad.

After breakfast, instead of the usual homework, Marceline takes Frisk to her and Conrad’s room so they can change into their formal clothes for the funeral.

They go into the closet and Marceline pulls out two small sets of clothing.

In one hand Marceline is holding a small tuxedo, it looks like the ones Conrad wears, bow tie and all.

In the other hand, she is holding a simple, yet elegant, black dress; akin to her own, but smaller.

She asks, “Suit, or dress?”

Frisk ponders this for a moment… the suit looks nice and might be comfortable… but the dress also looks nice, and doesn’t look too difficult to move around in, unlike the suit.

Curious, Frisk asks, “Why not both?”

Marceline smiles, but shakes her head. “We don’t have a dress/suit combination, unfortunately. But I can make one for you after, if you want. For now, you have a suit or a dress.”

After some more contemplation, Frisk decides that the dress is pretty cute and chooses that.

Their mother helps them into the black dress, and changes into her own as well.

When done, Frisk leaves to brush their teeth.

After doing so, Frisk remembers that they never checked their phone… ‘where did I put it last?’

They go to their room and check, but it isn’t on their nightstand… Nor on their dresser… Frisk checks inside their nightstand, just in case.

No phone, but there are… ‘Seven Last Dreams…? How… are they still here?’

Frisk closes their nightstand, but makes note of the valuable assets within.

They look for Toriel, maybe she has their phone?

Frisk looks around the house, and eventually finds their father and asks, “have you seen Toriel?”

Rubbing their head, he says “she’s being fitted for a dress, little star. Is there something you wanted to ask her?”

Frisk nods and says, “yea I’m looking for my cell pone.”

He appears to remember something and reaches into his back pocket, then pulls out their phone. “I’m sorry, I completely forgot! Here you go. Toriel had it so she could give it to you in the morning, but she forgot.”

Frisk checks their phone: 9:45A.M. March 28th, 2045|No Messages

After checking their phone, they remember their manners. “Thank you, Daddums!”

“You are very welcome. Now, come on, let’s go to the lobby. It shouldn’t be too long.”

Frisk is tempted again to ask who the funeral is for, but decides not to.

When the two arrive in the Lobby, Frisk sees Asgore in his royal attire. Seems no one else is coming.

Curious, Asgore asks, “Conrad, if I may… I have heard here and there about your customs, but… what is a human funeral like these days?”

Politely, Conrad replies, “to prevent wälder beasts from using the bodies of our dead… we cremate them. After that, it depends on the will of the deceased, or, should the deceased not have a will prepared, the desire of the family. Usually the ashes end up being buried with a new tree. If the deceased is not… presentable, we place them in a coffin before the cremation. The family paints the coffin to represent the deceased; friends can as well, should the family allow it.”

Asgore nods respectfully, “I see… Thank you for informing me.”

A few minutes pass while the three wait for Toriel and Marceline to arrive, so Frisk and Asgore begin playing catch with a fireball. Conrad watches from the side, amazed by how Frisk is not being burned by the fire. When Frisk offers for him to join, Conrad is unsure and decides against it.

After a few more minutes, Marceline and Toriel come down from the master bedroom.

Toriel is wearing a black formal dress similar to her usual dress, but without the Deltarune.

Frisk inspects the dress, then gives their mom a thumbs up. “As good as always, mummy.”

When that exchange finishes, the group leaves the manor to attend the funeral.

On the way there, Frisk notices that the streets are too empty for a weekday; even for a funeral.

They go to the far north west end of the town, where the funeral pyre is usually set up.

Huh… I thought we’d go to the training grounds first?’

A few passersby shoot distrusting and hateful looks at Asgore and Toriel, who ignore them and continue walking in a solemn manner.

Frisk doesn’t like how much humans distrust monsters this time around… ‘Hopefully it’ll get better…’

When they arrive at their dismal destination, Frisk notices that the pyre is already set up and the coffin has been painted. Part of them feels dismayed thinking that, if it’s really Katsuro in there, Bernard didn’t even think of letting them paint on the box… But part of them is relieved, because not being asked to paint their representation of him on the box lets them believe he’s still alive. It let’s them believe he really is just at the Sanctum.

A majority of the village has assembled for the funeral.

For better or for worse, funeral goers tend to avoid speaking the name of the deceased; Frisk will only know if they ask.

They decide not to, but become nervous when Bernard moves to the pyre to speak.

As the captain of the guard, it’s customary for him to speak when a guard falls… so that could mean some other guard died… but… him speaking first could also mean it’s Katsuro for sure, since he adopted Katsuro.

Usually the family speaks first, then the captain of the guard, then guests…

Looking around the crowd, Frisk sees several people start giving Asgore and Toriel mean looks.

Bernard begins to speak in a low, saddened, tone, “We are gathered here today to mourn the loss of one of our own. A brother in arms, a friend, and a son…”

Frisk feels even worse about what is going on after hearing Bernard say “son.”

Tears start to well up in Frisks eyes as Bernard continues speaking.

“the man we are here to remember was respected among his friends, considered a fine warrior by his peers, and… considered one of the gentlest people by his family, and friends.”

They way Bernard says that last part pulls at Frisk’s heart. It almost sounds insincere, but Frisk knows he’s probably holding a lot of emotions in.

Conrad tries his best to comfort them.

Bernard continues speaking, “If there are any who wish to speak, the time is yours. As is customary, we will light the pyre when the sun begins to set; a symbol of our defiance against the aberrant beasts that plague this land.”

Frisk is too upset to really pay attention, but a few people get up and speak about the deceased.

Torn between wanting to know for sure who is dead and not wanting to confirm their fears, Frisk is very distraught… but their inner turmoil is interrupted when the next speaker starts yelling at them…

No… not at them… Derrick is yelling at Asgore and Toriel.

“You damn monsters! You’re the reason he’s dead! How can you stand here and disrespect his memory?! Do you really think we’re- HEY! STOP! I’M NOT DONE! YOU MONSTERS WILL REGRET COMING HERE!”

Derrick is silently pulled away by guards, but others begin grumbling too.

Soon, a large number of people are whispering angry words while looking at the Dreemurrs.

Eventually, a few people begin angrily demanding for them to leave; while others begin throwing rocks and sticks at them. Asgore takes the hits without flinching, but Toriel prefers to keep her new dress from being damaged and tries to evade the incoming objects.

The humans are not throwing with killing intent, so the objects don’t hurt much.

Frisk… can’t do anything. There is too much going on, and they can’t handle it…

In a deep commanding voice, that is unmistakably calm, Asgore says, “Enough. We will depart.”

The angry humans go silent and step away, having not anticipated such a fierce but calm voice; let alone compliance.

Practically radiating dignity and grace, like the grossly incandescent sun, the Dreemurrs turn and leave at a leisurely pace together.

Conrad motions for Frisk to follow as he and Marceline leave with them.

An angry woman yells out, “course the Addamses’d side with MONSTERS! You lot were ne’er good fer anyt’ing but your damn land an’ gen’rater!”

The group of monsters and humans leave silently, paying no mind to the ignorant humans.

Once back home, Frisk runs off to their room to cry.

 

As CU-270 slowly begins to wake up, vaguely familiar voices intrude with memories long forgotten.

From the perspective of a small child, he sees strange symbols and patterns on the walls, floor, and ceiling of an otherwise empty square room. Floating in the center of the patterns is spot that looks darker than it should be. Looking at it scares the child in the memory.

‘Come on now, son, it won’t hurt. I promise. This is for the good of everybody, you will be helping so many people!’

‘…bud… eye dun wana… id s-scawy…’

I know… but it will be OK. You trust daddy, right ?????? I promise, everything will be OK.’

The memory goes dark and is followed by shrill screaming, which wakes CU-270 up more.

Still dazed, he begins to pull off his now useless flesh, along with his equally damaged and useless jump suit. Scars across his magic bones remain, unable to be healed. He will have to fix himself later.

It’s a good thing he has been trained to tune out pain, else ripping his useless muscles, nerves, and organs away would take longer. His acidic and DT filled blood isn’t helping either, since it is stinging his bones and threatening to dissolve him as it spills out from his defunct blood vessels and arteries.

CU-270 is curious what the memory is about. He does not understand what is scary about it, either.

It is just a small opening to the void, where he was born, his home and refuge. That isn’t scary, right?

Now fully awake, CU-270 slowly props himself up, and finishes removing the useless flesh from himself; the dense purple, blue, and orange lattices that connect his physical body to his magic body are making it more difficult than he would prefer, but eventually he gets most of it off, except for a few chunks of muscle, tendons, and ligaments here and there.

Once done, he looks around the room.

The floor of the room, which is about 14’ by 26’, is almost completely covered in fresh blood; new specks dot the ceiling, walls, and equipment as well. The blood around where the human corpses are steams and bubbles while the acid within slowly dissolves them. His body was engineered to resist the acid, but a normal human’s body cannot.

With that being said, it is a double edged sword since his magic bones cannot resist the DT as easily.

The acid is too weak to effect the metal equipment, so CU-270 is not worried, but he works as quickly as he can so that he doesn’t have to stand in such an uncomfortable pool of liquid and gore.

A faint shimmer surrounds him as his body is slowly rebuilt. His new one will be made of magic, since he does not have access to an organic body. It is unlikely the facility will have a new one for him either, since they were going to “decommission” him.

The process for his SOUL to make a new body will take a few days, however. So CU-270 will be unable to observe humans personally without alarming them; if he were to accidentally wake one up they may attack him.

He may be unable to die, but that does not mean he wants to experience near-death again.

His jumpsuit is useless now too, having been torn to shreds from the backlash… He will have to go down to the monster level to get some temporary gear for skeletons.

But first. He needs to learn how to speak like a human.

He breaks open what he hopes is a breaker box on the wall, and checks to see if it was turned off.

It was not. Power must have been interrupted elsewhere.

CU-270 uses magic to trace the power lines and find the interruption… but his magic stops when it gets near the main generator for this level.

He takes a moment to be thankful that each level has it’s own generator, and this level's generator is in the center of the facility.

An easy enough fix. CU-270 leaves the room, but marks the outside in Wing-Dings with some blood; he would rather be able to easily spot his previous location than remember it.

He would use a shortcut, but he feels like it may strain him too much. He decides to wait until his body and magic settles down, and begins to walk to the center of the facility.

One of his feet breaks off shortly after he begins walking away from the door, having been too damaged to remain attached, but CU-270 pays it no mind and continues to the generator room.

As he gets closer, his body appears to heal faster… Strange.

When he arrives, the large armoured doors to the generator room do not want to budge and, due to magic precautions that are in place, he cannot shortcut through or otherwise affect the door, or its mechanisms, with magic…

Time for CU-270 to think outside of the box…

He goes into the void, and tried to open an exit to reality a few feet in front of where he is standing. It works, and when he steps through he reappears inside the room in a surprisingly dark corner. He did not expect that to work.

CU-270 ponders why there were no safety precautions in place for something like that, but his question is answered quickly when he turns from the corner and looks around the generator room.

A large silver metal sphere, with wires and lights all over it, sits in the middle of the giant room. Bright lights are pointed at it. One of which is dead… that must have been why he was able to enter.

Wait… Why am I in here?

Oh, right. The breaker box…

I start moving over to where the-…

CU-270 trips while he begins moving to some switches on a weird console looking thing. Having only one foot is not helping him any but, for better or worse, he is too stubborn to stop now.

When he makes it to the switches on the weird panel, he sees a few of them in the ‘OFF’ position…

I can’t-…

He cannot understand what the labels say, so he flips all the ones he can in hopes that one of them is correct.

The metal sphere in the center of the room begins to open.

Why is everything becoming so… bright?

Where am I… Who… am I…?

CU-270 turns to look at the sphere, taken by surprise by the noise and movement.

Why is that skeleton looking at me?

Why does this room feel so… familiar?

I don’t like this… I don’t like this! I DON’T LIKE THIS! I DON’T LIKE THIS!!

I attack the skeleton… but it evades, despite how injured it is.

Stop looking at me and die already!

My next attack hits because it doesn’t move, but nothing happens…?

No… No, of course nothing happens. You can’t die, can you?

You’re already dead, aren’t you…? You have no SOUL.

I curl up, doing my best to protect my shattered SOUL, in case the skeleton is here to take it.

CU-270 begins healing even faster now that the metal sphere is open. The cracks in his bones begin to fade, his foot grows back, and his replacement body begins growing in faster; he will be able to observe humans in person faster than he expected.

He briefly contemplates what inside the sphere could cause his accelerated healing.

A plaque on the bottom half of the sphere says words CU-270 can’t understand, he memorizes them.

The last remaining chunks of flesh start to fall off of his bones as magical flesh replaces it.

Stepping closer to the metal sphere, now curious, CU-270 looks within and sees…

Nothing, it is just an opening to some strange part of the void; CU-270 can barely see it due to the bright lights.

Further inspection slowly brings something into view. He can faintly see a small humanoid curled up in the center; faint red specks can be seen here and there.

What is that creature doing in the metal sphere?

Why do I hear someone thinking in my head?

Get away from me!

Confused, CU-270 backs away from the opened metal sphere. He continues trying to find the breaker for the training room.

Eventually he finds some switches that look similar to the ones in the training room and flips them, then leaves when he doesn’t find any more.

Outside of the room, Sans is waiting; It takes CU-270 off guard.

Seeing CU-270 so damaged worries Sans, so he asks in Wing-Dings, “what happened? you ok?”

Hesitantly, CU-270 responds |I LOST DT, AND FRISK’S LAST LOAD ATTEMPT ALMOST WENT THROUGH, SO I SPOKE TRUE TO CHANGE THE HUMAN MACHINES TO PREVENT IT. I DIDN’T SAY THE COMMAND RIGHT, SO I GOT HURT A LITTLE.|

Sighing, partially in relief, Sans responds, “a little…? if you say so… we should get you something to wear… why were you in there, by the way?”

Promptly, hoping maybe Sans will help, CU-270 says, |THE ROOM WITH THE PODS IN IT WAS NOT POWERED, I NEED TO LEARN ‘HUMAN’ SPEECH… BY THE WAY… WHY IS THAT SMALL CREATURE IN THE METAL SPHERE?|

Sans’ eyes go dark, and he proceeds as if he didn’t hear the last part, “i can help with that, c’mon, i'll teach you ‘e n g l i s h,’ bud.”

CU-270 replies, |I ALREADY GOT ALL THE FLIPS SWITCHED, I JUST NEED YOU TO ACTIVATE AND SET THE POD TO THE RIGHT LANGUAGE. THIS WAY IS FASTER, NO TIME TO LOSE.|

Hesitantly, Sans shrugs.

‘i wonder if cu-270 knows what’s actually in that metal sphere…? i can’t let him get too close again, who knows what’ll happen…’

Despite knowing the potential dangers, it wasn’t until after Frisk got back from the funeral that Sans came to check the Lab for CU-270. Seeing them cry made him want to find CU-270 so that at least something can go right for them.

Sans isn’t looking forward to going back in the training room, but CU-270 is really… Determined.

They follow the bloody foot and stump prints back to the “Enhanced Training Room.”

Curious, CU-270 asks, |HOW DID YOU KNOW I WAS HERE, BY THE WAY?|

Another sigh, Sans replies, “my first clue was you stoppin’ time… but i didn’t want to bug ya… that is, until i heard… something i haven’t heard in a long time. i knew i had to come see if you were ok.”

The duo arrive at the blood drenched room, and the machinery within is humming with power, waiting to be utilized. It appears a lot of the blood has been displaced, probably because of Sans.

CU-270 looks down to see Sans’ feet, and sees that his pink slippers are covered in blood…

He uses the “Prestidigitation” spell to clean them for him. Sans doesn’t notice, but that is OK.

Sans feels like using these pods to teach CU-270 proper English isn’t a good idea… Especially since he learned about that… horrible device.

He sighs… ‘even if i don’t teach him, he’ll learn eventually… i'll just have to try to convince him not to investigate it.’

CU-270’s body has mostly reformed now… So Sans gets a lab coat for him to wear.

Curious as to why he needs to wear something, CU-270 tilts his head. |?|

With a wink Sans says, “some things are best left to the imagination.”

CU-270 finds it strange. He has no reproductive organs, so what is there to hide?

He takes the coat anyway, not wanting to make Sans uncomfortable. |PERHAPS A NEW JUMPSUIT WOULD BE MORE… SUIT-ABLE?|

Sans is taken by surprise, “did you… just make a pun?”

CU-270 nods in affirmation.

Sans puts on a grin, despite still feeling terrified within. “heh… good job…”

Reluctantly… Sans goes to the consoles. He considers putting CU-270 to sleep, but realizes… he can’t run from his mistakes forever.

CU-270 signs something, but Sans isn’t paying attention. He finishes setting up one of the pods, and directs CU-270 within.

Then waits for a few minutes before he decides to go and find a new jumpsuit for CU-270.

By the time he’s back, most of the blood has dried and the pod is almost done “teaching” CU-270 English.

Once it’s done, Sans helps CU-270 out of the pod and into his new jumpsuit.

Then they wordlessly make their way to the teleporter room. Sans has to help CU-270 keep his balance, since he is still disoriented from the bombardment of information.

‘he’ll probably want to come back once he’s recovered. i'll have to keep him within sight… somehow.’

When Sans and CU-270 arrive back at the manor, CU-270 has completely passed out, so Sans carries him to his dark room. He’s surprisingly light.

He lays CU-270 down, sits against the wall, and waits for him to wake up…

Hours pass, and CU-270 shows no sign of waking any time soon.

His mind is devoid of thoughts, and he hasn’t so much as twitched.

If it weren’t for the almost imperceptible rise and fall of his chest, Sans would think CU-270 is dead.

That doesn’t keep Sans from worrying.

He decides to inspect CU-270’s SOUL… then remembers that it isn’t attached to his body.

Sans sighs, then decides to leave a note for him; he wants to check on Frisk.

As he approaches Frisk’s door, he can hear soft crying… ‘man… they’re still at it.’

He sighs… yet again, then knocks on the door twice.

Sniffing and movement can be hear from the other side. “(who’s there?)”

“boo.”

Not really feeling up to it, Frisk gets up and opens the door.

They’re not able to mask their sadness. Their eyes are puffy from crying, their cheeks are wet, and their face looks sad enough to break any man’s heart. “What’s up, Sans?”

Trying to lighten the mood, he replies, “up? i was gonna ask why you’re so down… it’s like you’re in the underground dumps, kiddo.”

“Katsuro is gone… He’s gone, and he’s never coming back… And to make it all worse… humans really don’t like monsters this time around. They were throwing stuff at Asgore and Toriel, Papyrus can’t even go outside, and Undyne… well… actually they stay away from Undyne, but not because she’s awesome…”

Frisk begins tearing up again, “Everything’s a mess and it’s all my fault. Katsuro… Katsuro is… he’s dead…”

Frisk starts having trouble controlling their breathing as they start to cry more, “He’s d… de-dead, b-be-because I d-didn’t work fast *hic* e-enough! B-because I t- t- took my time, and *hic* I st-stayed in the Undergr-*hic*grou-ound for too l- l- long! Because I was too scare-ared to *hic* face everyth-thing up here…”

Sans… doesn’t know what he can say that will help…

Frisk slowly transitions to sitting on the floor while crying, and Sans sits with them. He wraps his arm around Frisk’s shoulders, and they lean into his side and hug him while they continue to cry quietly.

After a few moments, when Frisk has calmed down, Sans speaks up, “buddy… it isn’t your fault, ok? but …you’ve gotta promise me something.”

No response beyond an attempt to make less noise…

Sans waits for a few moments, then continues. “No RESETTING unless you absolutely have to, OK? you can’t keep going back and trying to make everything perfect. you can’t really be happy without feeling what it’s like to be sad, and without being able to feel happy… what’s the point?”

Frisk hesitates… but eventually nods weakly and continues softly crying.

Guiltily, he thinks back on CU-270’s… condition.

He rubs Frisk’s head and says, “i need to get up, i've got something i've gotta do…”

Frisk nods weakly, and wipes the tears off their face while standing.

Sans takes off and drapes his jacket over them, saying, “hold on to this for me, ok?”

Frisk nods, and heads back into their room as Sans turns and leaves.

When Sans arrives back at CU-270’s room, it’s empty.

Sans begins to panic.

 

CU-270 is standing in the generator room for the middle level of the secret human Lab, where that strange metal sphere with the creature in it is.

‘Tricking Sans to think I was unconscious was… difficult. I guess all that… “training” really paid off.’

He looks around the room, ‘Sans really didn’t want me here. I wonder why.’

Able to read the panels now, he investigates the first panel he found.

The labels read:
Top right switch: “Quan-Stab-Matr” … It’s in the “ON” position. There is a keyhole next to it.
‘Probably means “Quantum Stability Matrix.” It should probably stay on.’

Top left switch: “Void-Inhi-Ligh” … It’s in the “ON” position. There is a keyhole next to it.
‘This one must be for the lights. Normal lights would work, but these seem special. I wonder why…’

Bottom Right switch: “Void-moni-syst” … It’s in the “OFF” position, and a red light is flashing next to it.
‘Hm… I… don’t know what this is for. Are they monitoring the void, or using the void to monitor something? I flipped this one without knowing what it was last time, must not be important.’

Bottom Left Switch: “Clos-Void-Cont” … It’s in the “ON” position.
‘This one must be the one that opens the sphere… “Close Void Container,” perhaps? Wait… I flipped this one before, didn’t I? Hm… Oh, there’s an automated timer that returns it to the “ON” position after 30 minutes.’

CU-270 turns and reads the plaque on the metal sphere. “?????

Strange… he can’t read it.

Looking back at the control panel, he flips the bottom left switch. A red light comes on, and the light on the bottom right switch stays on instead of blinking.

He flips the bottom right switch, and both lights turn green.

Mechanical whirring can be heard, CU-270 looks back and watches the sphere open.

‘Why is that creature in there?’

I approach the-…

CU-270 trips, then continues approaching the sphere.

Wanting to get a better look, but not wanting to take too much of a risk, CU-270 breaks some of the lights in a symmetrical pattern.

A small area within the sphere goes dark.

He breaks more lights, and it grows darker.

He breaks four more… and it grows yet darker. There are only a few lights left.

The darkness within is now unfathomable, light appears to cease existing within.

Small red specs become clearly visible, trapped by a multi-coloured magic pattern.

CU-270 analyzes the magic… It’s a small part of a larger whole, used to bind a SOUL.

Those red specs must be a SOUL, I wonder who it belongs to.’

A small humanoid form becomes visible, it appears to be trying to protect the SOUL fragments.

Faint banging from the armoured door starts to sound.

I knew Sans would come, I wonder what I should do…

Why am I thinking so loudly?’

I look back at the person in the room, are they the one thinking in my head?

‘No, I look back at the container.’

No, I look back at the person.

‘No, I look back at the container.’

No, I look back at the person.

‘No, I look back at the container.’

No, I look back at the person. No, I look back at the container.’

The person collapses. Weird. I wonder why.

Why do I hurt so much?

CU-270 slowly gets up after a few minutes, and goes over to the control panel…

‘…my head hurts. What happened?’

StStopop ttalking in my head!’

Wait… I… think I understand now. This is the room from that memory. The one with the bright lights…’

I should turn the “Quan-stab-matr” OFF. They are trapping me. Using my SOUL to power the lab.’

I don’t want to bother finding the keys.’

Opting to ignore the switches, CU-270 tears the side off of the control panel, and hot-wires the top two switches into the “OFF” position.

‘I understand now… I know who this SOUL belongs to.

It’s mine.’

‘This SOUL is mine. It has to be… but why is it here?’

As the magic field holding the specks of red in place slowly fades, CU-270 holds out a hand and uses blue magic to bring them to himself.

Slowly, carefully, he re-assembles the fragments. The small humanoid made of void hovers nearby, watching. Waiting.

Upon completion… nothing happens. The SOUL won’t re-fuse. It… looks like it’s missing something, but CU-270 can’t tell what. He looks back at the machine.

The small figure floats back to the machine, and looks around. Then shrugs.

‘ These fragments will dissolve soon if I don’t do something to fuse them back together… but… I don’t have the power needed to do that myself.’

CU-270 remembers that his Phylactery is supposed to contain his SOUL… and this machine does not look like a Phylactery. He is confused now.

He decides to get what should be his Phylactery. The small void creature leads the way.

‘I arrive where my surrogate body was being kept prisoner.’

‘Breaking through the glass was complicated, due to being forcefully moved through different timelines. It wasn’t until I figured out how to effect a single timeline, while being scattered across all timelines, that I managed to get out… I hope I don’t have to do anything like that again.

At least I had Gaster to keep me company. I wonder… why was he always there with me?’

CU-270 looks to where his Phylactery should be embedded… but nothing’s there.

‘Sans must have taken it.

A voice behind him confirms his suspicions, “…hey there. I see you… uh… found yourself. I was hoping to… ease you into that discovery.”

Angry, CU-270 takes on an aggressive stance and asks, “where is my Phylactery?”

Worried, Sans holds a hand up momentarily and says, “woah, hey, no need to be upset pal… to be honest, you’re not makin’ me want to give you your phylactery.”

CU-270 doesn’t change his stance, but his face appears less angry.

With a sigh, Sans says, “…i don’t have your phylactery. david has it. he never gave it to us… but you don’t need it, ‘cause it’s a fake. that big metal container was the only thing we could use as a phylactery for you. your soul… is… unique. david made sure of that…”

Sans turns and waves for CU-270 to follow, “c’mon, let me help get that SOUL back where it belongs.”

CU-270 looks to the small humanoid made of void, quizzically… then proceeds to follow Sans.

One wrong turn later and they arrive in the SOUL extraction room, Sans pats the operating table, then goes into the back room.

Not fully trusting Sans, CU-270 hesitates… but eventually lays on the table, SOUL fragments in hand.

The machine whirs to life, barely. The back up generator is hardly able to handle it, and is practically running on fumes by now. Sans hurries to get the machinery in place properly.

The fragments of the shattered SOUL float up higher, and the small void figure follows it.

As the armatures unfold and extend out, the humanoid figure condenses around the SOUL fragments.

Sans works slowly, and deftly connects the pieces; stringing them together with as much precision as he can. It takes quite some time.

After several hours, the humanoid figure is completely gone; having been stitched to the SOUL fragments.

When Sans finishes stitching the SOUL together, he works to link it to CU-270’s body.

‘it’s unstable… but it should stabilize on it’s own… he’ll just have to avoid using magic for a while.’

When the process finishes, CU-270 curls up and begins crying.

Sans leaves the back room and puts a hand on his shoulder. ‘a soul is a heavy burden, isn’t it… Frisk?’

 

Papyrus is surprised when he sees Sans sitting in the playroom, with a head of brown hair.

Confused, Papyrus asks, “SANS? WHERE DID YOU GET THAT WIG? YOU LOOK LIKE FRISK FROM HERE. YOU WON’T FOOL ANYONE IF YOU NEVER TAKE OFF THAT JACKET!”

When the not-Sans turns around, Papyrus is shocked, and concerned. They look very sad.

“FRISK!! WHY THE LONG FACE? DID ONE OF SANS’ PRANKS GO TOO FAR?! … HOW DID YOU GET HIM TO TAKE OFF THAT NASTY JACKET? YOU KNOW THAT THING HASN’T BEEN WASHED IN OVER TWO THOUSAND YEARS!!”

No response…

“I KNOW! QUICK, WHILE WE HAVE THE CHANCE, LET’S WASH IT! WEARING A FRESHLY WASHED JACKET WILL MAKE YOU FEEL BETTER!!”

Frisk turns and continues half-heartedly drawing… It makes Papyrus sad.

“WELL… IF CLEANING WON’T CHEER YOU UP, HOW ABOUT SOME FRESH MADE ‘FORGHETTI’? I JUST MADE THE RECIPE YESTERDAY! IT’S A SPAGHETTI SO GOOD YOU’LL FORGET ALL YOUR WORRIES!! NYEH HEH… HEH… HEH…”

It doesn’t seem like Frisk is all that interested in eating right now…

Papyrus decides to sit next to Frisk, in silence.

They’re drawing what looks somewhat like a male human.

“WHO IS THAT HANDSOME FELLOW?”

Quietly, sadly, Frisk replies “…Katsuro.”

“I SEE… I TAKE IT THIS HUMAN IS IMPORTANT TO YOU? LIKE ME WITH SANS?”

Frisk nods. “…I’ll never see him again… He’s gone forever…”

Papyrus contemplates that for a moment… and replies, “I DON’T THINK ANYONE IS EVER GONE FOR EVER. THERE ARE SO MANY THINGS THEY WOULD LEAVE BEHIND! I’M SURE YOU’LL SEE HIM AGAIN EVENTUALLY. LIKE… DADSTER!! DID YOU KNOW SANS AND I WERE ADOPTED WHEN WE WERE REALLY YOUNG?”

Curious, Frisk looks up and shakes their head.

“WELL DADSTER… IS MY NICKNAME FOR HIM. HIS REAL NAME IS W.D.GASTER… I DON’T KNOW WHAT W.D. STANDS FOR… BUT WHEN I WAS JUST A LITTLE BABY BONES, HE LOOKED AFTER ME AND SANS IN THE UNDERGROUND. HE MADE THE BEST HOTDOGS!! NOW THAT I THINK ABOUT IT… MAYBE THAT’S WHY SANS STARTED SELLING HOTDOGS.”

Frisk tilts their head to the side… not sure where this is going.

“OH! SORRY. *AHEM* DADSTER WOULD DO ALL SORTS OF THINGS WITH US WHEN HE WASN’T WORKING… WHICH WASN’T VERY OFTEN, BUT I ENJOYED EVERY MOMENT! WE HAD GAMES LIKE TIC-TAK-BONES, HIDE AND SHRIEK, AND, MY FAVOURITE, SUDOKU!”

Papyrus pauses for a moment to think before continuing, somewhat sadder.

“WHEN HE… VANISHED, I FELT REALLY SAD… SANS STARTED MAKING ALL THESE LAME JOKES, TRYING TO CHEER ME UP, AND EVEN GAVE ME DAD’S FAVOURITE COPY OF ‘FIRMABOUND.’ SANS DOESN’T THINK I REMEMBER DADSTER THAT MUCH… BUT I DO. I’M THE GREATEST, BECAUSE I HAVE A REALLY GREAT PERSON TO INSPIRE ME!! AS LONG AS I REMEMBER HIM, HE WILL ALWAYS BE WITH ME! AND IF HE IS ALWAYS WITH ME… HE WOULD ALWAYS BE TELLING ME TO NOT BE SAD, AND TO BELIEVE IN MYSELF. THAT DOESN’T MEAN I’M NOT SAD, OR I DON’T DOUBT MYSELF SOMETIMES… BUT I DO MY BEST, BECAUSE I KNOW THAT DADSTER WOULD WANT ME TO BE HAPPY.”

It doesn’t really help much, but… Frisk hugs Papyrus for trying anyway.

Marceline calls everyone to dinner over the brass pipes, and the two get up and go to eat.

Sans hasn’t returned yet, and that makes Papyrus look more worried… but they can’t wait for him for too long, so they save a plate for him.

The dinner table is rather quiet, so Frisk asks, “Alphys… did you ask Tim how the Sages remotely activated the barrier?”

Sullenly… Alphys nods. “If we checked earlier we would have known that… Asgore had p-permissions for the barrier already. The sages… they put as m-much of their magic into the Artifact as possible, th-then used a spell to make Asgore activate the b-barrier. They d-didn’t have to activate the barrier remotely… b-because Asgore was holding the Artifact… There… there isn’t… there isn’t a way to a-activate it remotely…”

The grim news lingers in the minds of those at the table, and the room feels like it grows quieter.

Frisk decides to go to sleep early tonight, so they get up and go to their room.

Not bothering to change into pajamas, Frisk throws themselves into their bed and tries not to cry.

Chara’s SOUL appears to look down at them…

Frisk’s Determination falters and they stop being able to feel their SAVE stars again, but they don’t care anymore.

Nothing seems to be going right for them this time around…

Chapter Text

Without the Necronomicon, Sans wouldn't have put CU-270’s… “Frisk’s” SOUL back together in time. Even now the lights begin to flicker and go dim as the generator slows and loses heat.

Sans can read CU-270 much more than before, now that his SOUL is put back together.

* Body/Skeleton
* AT: 65/45 DEF: 40/10 SPD: 15/30 HP: 1000/800

Sans remembers that reading stats for a Hybrid Lich is always disorienting at first, since their body is considered a separate entity from their skeleton. 'it's a good thing the stats don't stack, or this would be a worse situation... hmm, still can't read his mp.'

Over all, his stats are significantly lower than the humans claimed, but still excessively high for someone so… relatively young. ‘no wonder they didn’t want you getting your soul back… i'm a fool, again, for trusting them. can’ t believe i've been interacting with a “frisk” basically my entire life… this’ll be hard to get used to.’

Sans looks away momentarily and contemplates what David told him… ‘“never let cu-270 near the main generator, if he gets his soul back, it will bring an end to reality,” huh? well, let’s see how long reality lasts then… ’

Looking back, he examines CU-270’s stats a little closer and does some calculations in his head.
‘while impressive, these stats can’t bring an end to reality, asgore’s got ‘im beat if he fights seriously…’

With access to his SOUL and all of his emotions again, CU-270… “Frisk” begins remembering some of his past.

CU-270’s memories only come in brief flashes, and most are not entirely coherent, but he slowly starts to piece together… what he is, and what happened.

It isn’t very pleasant, and the experience causes him to switch between pure rage, and complete loss of hope; all while crying.

Sans does his best to comfort him, while he experiences the torrent of memories and emotions…


Young and happy, David picks Frisk up and tosses them in the air. “WooOAH!”

Frisk giggles, as they float in the air temporarily from David tossing them.

A woman, whose face is obscured for some reason, joins them.

Stifling a giggle, she says, “How are my two boys doing?”

The memory fades away, and in it’s place… darkness.

They are in some small enclosure full of cloth. Light sneaks it’s way through a crack.

Screaming is heard from a woman, it must be that lady.

Suddenly, the enclosure feels like it is moving quickly and hits something hard.

Frisk starts to cry, being scared.

??????!! Get down!”

The sound of magic being used is heard, along with the woman’s voice, “(David… I-…)”

A struggle is heard, then a faint whooshing sound.

Sounding panicked and angry, David cries out, “??????, are you OK? ??????, please wake up! ??????, don’t worry… everything will be OK… (Everything will be OK… just hang on a little longer! Please!)”

The memory fades, replaced with wooden cubes with patterns on them. In the background, David is sitting in a chair, head resting in his hands.

Documents litter the floor, their text is unreadable, but the letters look fancy and there are pretty patterns taking up most of the pages.

Soft crying can be heard coming from David. Frisk puts the block in their hand aside, crawls over to him, and tugs on his pant leg.

David picks him up, whispering, “don’t worry, buddy, I’ll be OK… I will never let this happen again…”

The memory fades… images of time passing follow. David looks like he’s reading a lot of documents. There are a lot of numbers and pictures… but then the memory starts to feel wrong.

The David reading papers starts to fade as another walks into the room, holding something.

A weird book, with weird pictures and letters, is placed on a table; it looks… bad.

Excited, somewhat scared, and intrigued, David says,
“I… I finally found it. I can bring her back… I’ll finally get to see my wife’s beautiful face again…”

Knocking is heard from the front door. David hides the book quickly, before going to the door.

“Who is it?”

“(I’m a messenger for the President. He read your proposal and is interested in speaking about it, in person.)”

David whispers, “(The President… I thought he brushed me off… This is my chance! I can finally get what I need… everything is lining up for me to bring her back… )”

Excitedly, David opens the door and replies, “When does President ?????? request my presence?”

Bluntly, the messenger replies, “now” and points his thumb behind him to a limousine.

David runs back into the house while shouting, “Give me a moment to gather the necessary things!”

The messenger simply nods, but looks down at a small curious face and comments,
“You never mentioned having a child… That should be fine, the President can arrange something for them.”

David stops gathering his supplies as the messenger speaks… he had almost completely forgotten.

After thinking for a bit, he continues collecting the things he will need, but also grabs things that Frisk will need as well.
“Yes, Frisk is a good child. He shouldn’t be any trouble at all. In fact, you may hardly notice him at all.”

After a few minutes, they get into the limousine and start driving…

A new memory fades in as Frisk falls asleep in the previous one.

Frisk is drawing -well, trying to- on the floor in an office, but they are startled by sudden shouting.

David is shouting at someone in a long white coat and holding papers, gesturing wildly as he does so,
“What do you mean?! These results have to be wrong! Did you do everything exactly as I said to? Run the simulation again!!”

Apologetically, the person looks down at the papers and replies, “I’m sorry, but we can’t do it… she’s been gone for too long. Even the strongest Green won’t be able to bring her back… unless we find some new magic or technology… I’m sorry. Anything else, sir?”

The person appears to brace for further yelling, but David just waves them off while supporting his head with one hand at his desk.

When the person in the white coat leaves, David starts muttering to himself. When he stops… he looks at a file cabinet across the room… and thinks.

Eventually, he gets a key from his desk and walks over to the file cabinet, and pulls out that weird book again. He places if gently on the desk and runs his fingers along its cover before sitting and staring at it, hands in a steeple.

Frisk goes back to drawing.

“New magic…? I’ll give them new magic… No, forgotten magic… I just need-…”

Happily, with a sinister undertone, he asks, “Frisk, would you like to help daddy?”

Frisk looks up curiously.

David’s face has a look of… sudden realization.

Frisk nods happily, and the memory fades.

In a new memory, everything seems darker.

A lightly bandaged Frisk is standing in a room with weird drawings all over it. They’re pretty, but also really scary for some reason.

David enters the room with two skeletons.

One is slender and acts feminine, and the other is somewhat tall, is wearing a lab coat, and has cracks on its face.

The one with cracks in its face asks something in Wing-Dings, “are you sure about this, David?”

David doesn’t respond to him, he just approaches Frisk, and moves them outside of the circle.

Frisk is starting to feel scared. The other two skeletons move into some small circles connected to the big circle, as does David, and they begin chanting in some strange language…

A small black dot begins forming in the middle, and Frisk starts shivering in fear.

The dot grows larger until it’s about the size of an orange, Frisk loves Oranges.

When it stops growing, the three stop chanting in that weird language.

David turns and looks at Frisk, then kneels down and starts talking.

Gently, David places his hand on one of Frisk’s shoulders and asks,
“Hey buddy, I need you to stand in the middle of that circle with the black spot under it. Can you do that for me?”

Frisk shakes his head, thinking back on all the screaming he has heard coming from this room,
“id gonna hurts… I don wanna do idt…”

Excitedly, he responds, “Come on now, son, it won’t hurt. I promise. This is for the good of everybody, you will be helping so many people!”

Nervously pulling at one of his bandages , Frisk says, “…bud… I dun wanna… id s-scawy…”

Calmly, with an undertone of lost patience, David says, “I know… but it will be OK. You trust daddy, right Frisk? I promise, everything will be OK.”

Frisk hesitates, still scared, so David picks them up and places them in the center somewhat roughly.

A second human enters the room, they are surprised at first when they see Frisk, but a swift glare from David makes them move further into the room hurriedly.

The two skeletons look at each other briefly. They seem hesitant.

David pulls out a weirdly shaped knife, and Frisk freezes in place; they are hyper-focusing on the item.

Slowly, carefully, David slides the strange knife across his palm. Blood drips out, and he lets it fall into the circle for a few moments before the other human bandages his hand.

Frisk is worried, but doesn’t do anything lest they receive punishment.

David holds out his bandaged hand, and demands, “Show me your SOUL, Frisk.”

Frisk shakes his head, stepping back a little.

David is done with Frisk’s defiance, and decides to force their SOUL out with magic.

Frisk yelps as their SOUL is pulled out of their body to float above David’s hand. The human and skeletons flinch on Frisk’s behalf.

Attempting to comfort them, David puts the knife into a pocket and rubs their head, saying,
“It will be OK… After this, no one will ever be able to hurt you again… I promise.”

David uses magic on Frisk’s SOUL and, with the help of the second person and the two skeletons, they create a pretty multi-coloured pattern in the black spot. It almost puts Frisk at ease.

The pattern then begins to glow an eerie purple colour, different than normal purple magic…

On Frisk’s SOUL, David is using similar magic. Frisk’s SOUL feels like it’s being trapped by something.

They slowly stop feeling scared, but don’t understand why. Soon, they feel almost nothing.

Slowly, shaking lightly, David hugs Frisk… and they briefly feel a sharp sting in the back of their neck.

A brief gasp from the other human, “David, you… that isn’t part of the ritual!”

As their view fades, they hear David shakily reply,
“it will be fine! The ritual will be less painful this way… You don’t want him to suffer do you? I’m sure you’ve heard the test subjects screaming.”

Their view switches to that of their SOUL’s, and they see David using some weird tools to separate their flesh from their bones.

The skeletons join in and create magic patterns on Frisk’s bones, then David puts all his flesh back.

In horror, the other human is holding his hand over his mouth; their face is pale. Yet they don’t leave.

David clutches Frisk’s SOUL in his trembling hand, moves to the center, and holds it within the black spot…

The other human rushes down to Frisk’s corpse and begins using green magic on it.

After revealing their SOULs, the two skeletons begin chanting again.

A thin white line from their SOULs slowly makes its way to Frisk’s SOUL, and he starts to feel different.

Frisk cannot scream out, but his SOUL feels like it is being re-arranged… and the process is painful.

David’s grip around his SOUL becomes unbearably tighter. When it shatters, the memory goes dark.

But it isn’t dark because it ended. The memory continues from another perspective.

The feeling of searching, longing, and curiosity is felt. Followed by discovery and excitement.

As the feelings become more intense, the world fades back into view, but it’s hazy and all encompassing. Like they’re looking everywhere, all at once.

As the world fades more and more into view, the feelings fade away. They are left with nothing.

A hand is in most of their view, along with red specks here and there. It looks like the hand crushed a SOUL inside of them. Strange.

The hand is slowly removed, shaking slightly. Scared.

When they look down, they see a body. It looks familiar.

It’s their body. They try to reach out to it.

Black tendrils of void encompass their body. They want to be one with their body again, so they pull their body closer.

Slowly, the body rises and they begin to absorb it within themself.

When they are done, the view changes further. It stops being all encompassing, and focuses in like eyes; the world is less hazy. The human with the knife is trembling. He doesn’t look happy at all.

The view slowly shifts down to the floor, and the sound of a baby crying can be heard.

Slowly, the memory fades as the perspective progressively shifts more into the baby’s perspective.

An old memory follows… his first memory, or what he thought was his first memory.

Sitting on a table, he is being examined by a human in a white lab coat.

A short skeleton enters the room, and the human looks to them and says, “this subject is perfectly healthy, but I can’t really determine anything important about it. Magic seems about average, so does DT. At least the accelerated growing process worked as intended. What line did you say this subject was a part of?”

A vaguely familiar voice from the skeleton replies, “it was assigned to the 270 combat line. this one was made in a special way, using newly discovered techniques. david seems to have taken the results pretty badly, but learned something new for his… personal research.”

The human in the white coat sighs, “I swear, that man is too obsessed with bringing his dead wife back to life. Here we are in a state of the art facility, that spans across multiple timelines , and all he can think about is his dead wife … He doesn’t even spend time with his own son! …Speaking of, I expected Frisk in today; where is the little guy?”

The skeleton replies casually, “from what i've heard, frisk was sent away; i think david decided it was too dangerous for him here.”

Surprised, but pleased, the human in the white coat says, “well, at least he made one right decision.”

Unconvinced, the skeleton retorts,
right. i wouldn’t be surprised if david accidentally killed him in some experiment. that guy’s more unstable than an isolated quark.”

The memory fades as CU-270 is guided into a glass container and put to sleep.

CU-270 recognizes the small skeleton. It’s Sans, and he doesn’t look happy. His eye sockets are dark.


 

As the memories cease to flood his mind, CU-270’s crying and mood swings slow down.

He becomes aware of the hand placed on his back, and is wary at first before remembering that Sans is with him.

Slowly, sadly, CU-270 says, “David… he… I… was his son. He… used me for his experiments… He… killed me… all to get his wife back… all to get my mother back… When things didn’t go his way he… he abandoned me… treated me like just another failed experiment…”

Crying, CU-270 continues, “why… Why didn’t he love me…? Why was I not enough…?”

Sans is frowning, stuck between being angry and sad. He chooses to display the latter, so that CU-270 doesn’t assume Sans is upset with him. “h-hey now, bud, he may not have… loved you… but i bet you someone out there will. you don’t need that guy… k?”

CU-270 doesn’t respond… So Sans asks, “hey, i uh… when your soul was put back together, the computer identified your soul from past records… so… you’re name’s ‘frisk,’ huh? want me to call you that instead of cu-270?”

Without a pause, CU-270 angrily replies, “No. I don’t want to use the name that man gave me.”

Calmly, Sans replies, “fair enough… makes it easier to keep track of who’s who anyway… heh.”

An awkward silence fills the room.

Sans looks at CU-270’s face and takes the chance to ask, “…will you forgive me? for all the things i… did. all the stuff i was told to do…? for… taking out my frustration on you, and the other test subjects…?”

Still upset, CU-270 responds, “…I need some time. I… have something I need to do.”

Curious, Sans asks, “you still tryin’ to help frisk?”

CU-270 contemplates that… “yea… I don’t want them to experience as much pain as I have.”

Shrugging, Sans replies,
“fair enough… speaking of the kiddo, they don’t want that mark you put on them. they feel guilty that you’ll be hurt in their place.”

No response…

CU-270 is examining his memories. Looking back at his past observations now that he understands English, and has a better grasp on emotions.

Looking at CU-270… Sans becomes increasingly worried. His stats are rising quickly…

* AT: 105/85  DEF: 80/50  SPD: 15/30  HP: 1000/800

Quietly, with determination, CU-270 says,
“I know what I need to do” and stands from the operating table with a grim face, hands balled into fists, and eyes glowing red.

* AT: 145/125  DEF: 120/90  SPD: 15/30  HP: 1000/800

CU-270 vanishes before Sans can respond.

‘i’ve severely underestimated his destructive potential… hope it doesn’t bite us in the butt later.’

Sans can’t do anything about it now, so he slowly meanders back to the teleporter room to make the long trek to the village.

He’s pretty tired after all the walking and teleporting. with my luck, today’s gonna be busy…’

 

Frisk partially wakes up as they feel something fade away from their SOUL.

Suddenly, they feel a lot less safe… but they ignore it and manage to drift back to sleep.

The sound of magic attacks going off wakes Frisk up again, so they check their phone…

Frisk’s phone reads 3:12 A.M. March 29th, 2045|No Messages

Alphys is freaking out, Frisk can hear her panicking…

Undyne joins in, shouting something Frisk can’t understand.

Getting up, Frisk tries to find them and figure out what’s happening.

It isn’t hard, thanks to the shouting.

Frisk slowly makes their way to the Manor’s Lab and sees… Alphys kneeling in pain, with a magic bone lodged in her side.

Frisk can feel their SAVE stars again.

Undyne tries to ease the pain by using healing magic on her while she gently pulls the unusually solid magic attack out.

The attack hurts Undyne as she grabs hold of it, but she puts on a brave face and bears the pain.

Curious, and not fully aware of what is going on, Frisk asks, “what happened?”

It takes Undyne by surprise, and, still being in ‘defend-my-nerd-at-all-costs’ mode, she lets go of the magic bone and throws a spear.

Frisk deftly dodges, and Undyne cringes at her rushed decision.
“Sorry Frisk, some punk broke into the manor and ran off with the Artifact! We tried to fight ‘em off, but they were too strong.”

After rubbing their eyes, Frisk looks around the lab…

There are magic bones still sticking in the wall and work table. They are slowly dissolving into dust.

Thinking to themself, Frisk absent-mindedly grabs the sides of Sans’ jacket and pulls it tightly around themselves like a hug, wondering,
‘Did Sans take the Artifact…?’

Alphys speaks up, though strained, “th-they… they asked for the Artifact… but when I didn’t give it to them, they became really angry. Th-their magic… it isn’t… it isn’t n-normal. It… hurts so much…”

Sans surprises everyone, “that looks pretty painful… hey frisk, try not to tear my jacket, k? it’s old.”

Realizing that they are pulling on the sides, Frisk loosens their grip and looks to Sans curiously.

When the bone attack is removed from Alphys, Sans says “hey, you guys should come see this…” and guides them to the north-western facing side of the manor.

Along the way, Papyrus and Toriel join the group and Undyne catches them up on what happened.

Pointing to the closed window, Sans says, “… look outside.”

Undyne cautiously parts the curtains and a bright light starts flooding the room.

Frisk rubs their eyes… and when they look again, they see a large shimmering field in the distance.

Sleepily, Frisk asks, “…the barrier?”

Alphys’ face goes pale and she waddles over carefully, hand still on her side, “WHAT?! …but… they… n-no… this is… w-wrong! H-how…?” Then runs off as fast as she can without aggravating her injury.

Toriel takes her place at the window, and puts a hand over her mouth to stifle her surprised gasp.

Papyrus is a little confused, “WHY IS THE MOON SO BRIGHT?”

Sans chuckles a little, “that’s the barrier, bud. the moon is over there,” and points to the moon.

Slightly embarrassed, Papyrus scratches the back of his head and responds, “OF COURSE! I WAS JUST TESTING YOU!! YOU… PASS. I’M GOING TO CONTINUE DUSTING THE KNICK-KNACKS. THE ONES FRISK CAN’T REACH GET AWFULLY DUSTY!!”

Papyrus leaves, not fully understanding what the scene means; he’s sleepy, though he wont admit it.

Undyne can’t stop looking out the window. She doesn’t entirely understand what’s going on either, since she’s also tired, but the sight mesmerizes her. Part of her is relieved, but another part is worried…

Eventually however, she and Toriel leave, hoping to get sleep.

Sans left at some point, but Frisk didn’t notice.

Frisk stays for a little while, noticing something…

A shock wave can be seen flattening the terrain, as well as snapping trees, until it reaches about half way to the village where it merely bends them to near-snapping.

When it reaches the village, a reverberating sound similar to the thrusters on the aircraft, but with significantly more power, shakes the buildings in the village; immediately followed by a deep, ground shaking, knock.

A few unsecured roofs are blown away, causing some damage as they crash into other buildings.

Scared, the villagers leave their houses to investigate and see the barrier in the far distance over the trees, down in the forbidden valley.

They don’t understand what it is… and many begin to panic.

The manor isn’t affected by the shock wave much, given it’s incredibly sturdy design, so everyone within thinks it's just a strong gust of wind.

Frisk leaves the room and tries to get more sleep.

No one gets much sleep… but they try.

 

Eventually, Frisk wakes up again…

They don’t quite feel rested, but if they go to sleep again they may wake up late.

Frisk’s phone reads 9:45 A.M. March 29th, 2045|2 Messages

‘Why didn’t…? Oh, someone turned off my alarm… new messages? I wonder who…’

_________________________________
From: TalkToTheHand >
Frisk dear, this is Ms. Thing. The
Elder needs you at the village hall
ASAP. You probably heard that
huge quake last night… it’s about
that. People think monsters did it.
_________________________________

From: TalkToTheHand >
Also, I know you wanted me to
remind you yesterday to talk to
resource management, about
allowing some monsters to help
with farming, but it didn’t seem
like a good idea with the funeral.
But today could be the perfect
opportunity, I already left them
my notes for you.
_________________________________

 

‘Oh yea… I forgot about that… well, the town hall was closed yesterday anyway…’

Frisk yawns, changes out of their pajamas, and goes to eat a late breakfast.

They realize that they haven’t been setting up many traps lately. The house is getting… boring.

Sudden realization of what they saw last night hits them, and Frisk begins to feel really sad… until they enter the dining room, and see two… two fluffy boss monsters.

Everyone is accounted for… ‘But at what cost?’

Marceline greets them, “hello there, little angel, did you sleep well enough?”

Frisk shrugs, and sits at the table so they can start eating with every one else.

Curiously, Frisk asks, “who put the barrier up?”

Sans gets a worried look on his face, “i’m pretty sure cu-270 did.”

Alphys questions Sans further, “OK, but… how did they activate the barrier?!”

Sans thinks for a moment, then responds casually, “his real name is frisk, and he’s a red soul just like our frisk.”

Not accepting his half-effort answer, Alphys retorts,
“but when the Artifact checks your SOUL it’s checking everything about who you are, and what you are. There’s no way he can bypass that!”

Sans sighs… he doesn’t really want to explain, but it’s looking like he’ll have to.

Everyone else is more interested in the name. Conrad asks,
“you said his real name is Frisk? What a coincidence! I wonder… why was he given such an impersonal code name like CU-270 anyway?”

Sans looks away, “it’s a long story… he actually doesn’t like being called frisk. his… uh…”

Using his fingers as air quotes for emphasis, Sans continues, “‘father’ isn’t a very good guy.”

The air quotes are unneeded, but drive home the sarcasm and disdain. If words had a taste to them, then that one seemed to leave a foul and lingering taste in Sans’ mouth.

Marceline, hoping to bring a lighter tone to the early morning conversation, suggests, “it sounds like we will have to pick a name out for him.”

Undyne, not fully getting the clue on switching to a happier tone, replies,
“we’ll probably end up only using it on his grave. That punk was strong, but I don’t think he’d manage to survive against that… abomination.”

Sans leaves unexpectedly and returns, speaking, a bit louder than usual, “i’d suggest waiting on the gravestone. he’s definitely going to come out alive, if you can call it that. he’s a void born lich, and a red soul. he’s the most determined thing within the barrier, so he’ll have access to saving and loading.”

Everyone is a little confused by the statement. They get the part about him being a red SOUL, but…

Alphys is the one who asks, “he’s a what?”

From somewhere, Sans pulls out a strange leather bound… no… it isn’t leather. it’s a book bound in… human skin.

It makes everyone at the table feel uneasy.

Marceline and Conrad are intrigued by it, but cautious.

Sans carefully places it on the table, and says, in a serious tone, “This is the ‘Necronomicon.’ It contains some very dark magic. Liches come in three main types: human, monster, and hybrid. Hybrid Liches are David’s own discovery, as well as their sub-type the ‘Void Born.’ That's what CU-270 is. A hybrid Lich whose SOUL was bound to the void, and underwent a ‘rebirth.’ Only a hybrid Lich can be Void Born. This book has all the information for them… but can drive you insane as you attempt to read it. I've been scanning it into a computer in the Underground at night, and cleaning out the occult stuff, so we wont go crazy reading it. We’re going to need this information if we want an advantage against David, CU-270's poor excuse for a father.”

The room is silent. None of the monsters are used to Sans… speaking so much. No jokes either…

Him being serious really puts them all on edge.

Before anyone can ask any questions, Sans looks to Toriel and Asgore and asks,
“could you please turn this filth into ash, with the fury of a thousand burning suns?”

The two boss monsters are taken by surprise, and at first think he is just messing around… but his face tells a different story. He really does want them to light the book on fire with as much magic as they can muster.

Toriel is the one who asks, somewhat concerned, “is it really a good idea to destroy this… book?”

Sand doesn’t reply, he just keeps looking at them… He doesn’t have to reply.

Everyone in the room can feel the sinister aura given off by the book.

While observing the encounter, Frisk thinks to themself,
‘no wonder Sans has been different lately… this book must be affecting him pretty badly… I wonder how long he’s had it… ’

The silence continues, so Frisk speaks up. “I think it’s a good idea. We should get rid of it.”

Asgore and Toriel look to each other, hesitantly, before looking back to Sans and nodding.

The three leave into the backyard of the manor with the book, and the rest continue eating their breakfast.

After a few minutes, banging is heard on the front door. Papyrus and Thing go to answer it, but Conrad and Marceline join them just in case.

Bernard is at the door.

Before they can greet him, he urgently says, “there’s a giant fire out back, is everything OK?”

Marceline greets him, “hello Bernard, good to see you; yes, the fire is fine. We are… disposing of an unwanted item. A book far too sinister to keep, as much as I’d like to.”

Feeling more at ease, though somewhat confused still, Bernard wipes the sweat off his brow from running over and says,
“If you say so… That’s quite a lot of fire.”

Conrad replies as Marceline steps back to let Frisk through,
“I’m sure it will be fine, the fire is being produced by the King and Queen of monsters; no doubt they will be safe.”

Before Bernard can reply, Frisk runs up and hugs him, “Saint Bernard! I’ve missed you SOO much!”

With a little chuckle, Bernard looks down and pats Frisk's head, “well, not as much as I missed you! How's my little anime-warrior-princess?”

Sadly, Frisk buries their face in his leg and says, “(I’ve been better…)”

Bernard rubs Frisk’s hair and says, “well, don’t worry, everything will get better… Speaking of everything getting better…”

Looking back at Conrad and Marceline, Bernard continues, “let me know when you and the monster King and Queen are available, the Elder and Council want to speak with you as soon as possible. Me and my guards will have to escort you there. Seems that a lot of people have been convinced that the giant shining thing in the distance is the beginning of some kind of attack. I’m pretty sure it's just the barrier you guys said you were going to put up, but since the mountain covered most of the external part of the barrier we never really saw it.”

Frisk replies, “Yea, it's the barrier.”

Conrad chips in, "Let us finish eating and we will be out post-haste."

Bernard nods, and turns to leave but Marceline beckons him to enter and they part for him.

While inside, Bernard takes the opportunity to advise the other monsters to stay inside until further notice.

Frisk, Marceline, Conrad, Toriel, and Asgore are all prepared to leave after just a few minutes.

When the group begins to leave the manor, they are greeted to six other armoured guards standing at attention.

Though they are not aware, Flowey is following from a distance.

Frisk takes a moment to SAVE at the star in front of the manor. A sure sign that CU-270 is locked within the barrier.

* FILE SAVED.
* FRISK FEELS REJUVENATED.

 

As the group continues down the mostly dirt and cobblestone paths, the people along the paths give suspicious glances to Asgore and Toriel.

But no one tries to do anything.

They seem hesitant to attack, unlike during the funeral.

Some commotion is heard down the road near the entrance, along with a voice that Frisk recognizes.

Frisk hurries over to the commotion, and Bernard rushes to keep up, saying, “Wait, Frisk. You have to be careful!”

When they arrive at the scene, Frisk sees some of the monster children huddled together in fear and surrounded by people.

Frisk can see Monster Kid “Monk,” IceCap “Caprice,” and a slime monster they haven’t met yet.

They look like they had a rough night, and have snapped branches ticking out of their clothes here and there.

A pile of dust is laying at Derrick’s feet.

Angry, Frisk yells out, “leave them alone Derrick, you big bully!”

Bernard catches up, “Frisk, stand back and let me deal with this… Derrick, what happened?”

Pridefully, Derrick turns and says,
“me and my buddies caught some monsters trying to infiltrate the village. You know, doing the job you’re supposed to do.”

Frisk is really upset, “they aren’t infiltrators, they’re just kids! They’re my friends!”

Scoffing, Derrick retorts, “like I’d listen to an Addams! You guys turned your back on humans when you took monsters in!”

Bernard walks closer to Derrick, and sternly says, “stand down Derrick.”

Frantically, Monk yells out, “yo! Frisk! H-help!! Th-this guy… he… he killed Drake!”

Proudly, Derrick looks back and says,
“yea I killed that annoying monster, and you’re next! It’s kill or be killed, and I’m not gonna be the one who dies today!”

Grimly, Bernard commands, “guards, take the Addamses and Monsters to the town hall as planned; I'll catch up. Get a medic on standby.”

But Frisk refuses to leave.

* FILE LOADED

Chapter Text

As soon as Frisk sees their SAVE star again, they run.

Bernard yells out after them, “Frisk! Wait! You can’t go alone!”

Frisk ignores him, they run as fast as they can, ‘I can save them! I have to save them!’

As Frisk makes their way through the village, they keep note of obstacles in case they have to retry.

Someone with a pitchfork dangerously pointed Frisk's way passes in front of them, then a cart carrying parts of a roof, followed by a bunch of people here and there carrying debris… far too much movement for Frisk to keep track of in one try.

Stumbling along the way, they eventually make it to the scene… right as Derrick deals the fatal blow…

* FILE LOADED.

 

Once again, Frisk runs off and Bernard yells out after them.

‘I have to be faster. I can’t mess up even once…’

Along the way, Frisk accidentally runs into the pitch fork that had passed in front of them last time.

Fortunately they die immediately, instead of slowly.

* FILE LOADED.

 

‘That was not fun, I need to be more careful.’

They try again, running as fast as possible, keeping track of everything they can.

When Frisk makes it to where they died last, they slide under the pitchfork… only to later be knocked onto their side and run over by the cart carrying the roof parts... this time they end up LOADING before they die, since their stomach is what was run over.

* FILE LOADED.

 

‘I’ll never make it at this rate… I need to… magic, I can use magic!’

Frisk uses Blue magic to make themself lighter so they can jump over obstacles easier.

Many of the villagers are taken by surprise when they see Frisk jumping so high.

When Frisk arrives, Derrick is dealing the fatal blow.

‘No… No no no! I won’t… I won’t let you die!’

* FILE LOADED.

 

Frisk decides to augment their lighter jumps with Cyan magic to make gusts of wind that push them through the air faster.

They end up flying into several buildings and people, and still don’t make it on time to save Drake.

* FILE LOADED.

 

‘One last time… Please!’

Frisk runs into fewer things and people this time around.

When they make it to the scene Derrick is about to strike Drake.

Without thinking, Frisk continues rushing forward and pushes Drake out of the way.

A sharp stab in their back preludes their demise as they lose feeling in their lower body, and fall into a pool of blood that builds up around them.

* FILE LOADED.

 

‘Just… one… more… time!’

Faster… More accurate. Frisk manages to avoid all the obstacles this time.

When they arrive, Flowey is holding Derrick’s arm…?

In a sweet voice, with his cute face bobbing side to side, Flowey says,
“Howdy, I’m Flowey! Flowey the Flower!”

He proceeds to pretend to shake Derrick’s hand while tightening his sharp vines around the knife, saying, “golly, aren’t you so polite! Holding your hand out like that for me to shake!”

Derrick is in shock. Golden flowers only sprout from where the Wälder Beasts fall… but now there’s one with a face… looking at him… talking to him. His face goes pale and the other people with him run off in fear, screaming various alterations of “The monsters are friends with the Wälder Beasts!!! We’re doomed! Run!!”

Flowey ignores them, and slowly gets closer to Derrick’s face, and begins to speak with a creepy face and voice, “you know, I used to be a lot like you. ‘Kill or be killed’ … but thanks to Frisk… I realized how stupid I was being.”

Flowey wraps more spiked vines around the petrified human’s hand, attempting to get him to drop the knife, as he continues speaking, “You don’t know it, but… you’ve actually killed this same little monster four times… Frisk stopped you last time, but you stabbed them. You didn’t even hesitate… You saw them push the monster out of the way … then you got angry, and then you stabbed them in the back.”

Now within an inch of Derrick’s face, with his creepiest face, and deepest voice, Flowey asks,
“WHO'S THE MONSTER NOW? AHAHAHAHAHA!!

Derrick falls back, letting go of his dagger, and crawls backwards as much as he can before standing and trying to run.

But Frisk is in his way, and instead of letting him run… They poke him and turn his SOUL green.

Frisk backs up, and says, “you’ve committed crimes against Firma and her people, I wont let you get away with what you were going to do.”

Panicking, Derrick demands, “w-what did you do to me?! Are you working with that… THING?!”

Frisk leans and looks around Derrick, Flowey is gone, so they loudly say,
“what thing, all I see are four monster children.”

Monk runs around, gives Frisk a knowing wink, and says,
“yo, dude! You saved Drake from this crazy guy! Thanks!”

Bernard catches up,
“Frisk! You shouldn’t run off like that! It’s dangerous outside right now… What’s wrong with Derrick?”

Frantically, Derrick pleads with Bernard, “Bernard! Those m-monsters, they’re allied with the Wälder Beasts! Some gold flower with a face on it grabbed my arm!”

Derrick lifts his arm to show the scratches on it, but when Frisk turned his SOUL green they also healed him on accident… It works out to their benefit.

Not amused, Bernard says, “I don’t see anything Derrick, tell me the truth.”

The other monster kids walk up and chime in…

Monk says,
“yo, this guy attacked us! He had this really short sword, it was kinda sad, but also really scary!”

Caprice chips in, “y-yea! We were blown out of the monster camp and got lost. When we found the village, this mean guy and his friends ganged up on us and started hurting us!”

The small slime monster brought the knife over in their slime-y body…

Bernard reaches down and picks up the knife, then briefly examines it before tucking it away.

Drake, still somewhat scared from the encounter, adds,
“H-he… He almost k-k-killed me! It was totally not cool!”

Frisk notices that Drake is still really injured, so they create some green band-aids and send them at Drake. They’re healed almost up to max.

Seeing Frisk use magic surprises Bernard, and sends Derrick into a rage, “what are you doing you little shit?! I knew you Addamses weren’t completely human, get away from me frea-”

A swift punch to his gut from Bernard shuts him up, and Bernard sternly warns, “don’t swear in front of children, and don’t name call like a bratty child. You’re coming with me, Derrick. I’m going to ask you some questions, and you are going to answer them.”

Still recovering from the punch to his gut, Derrick retorts, “like hell I will.”

Looking to the monster children, Bernard says, “you kids, come with me, I’m going to need to talk with you too. Frisk… Never run off like that again. What if you got hurt, or worse?

Frisk already knows the answer, they would LOAD… but Bernard doesn’t know they can do that, yet.

Looking down at their feet, Frisk guiltily says, “sorry…”

Bernard tries to pull Derrick with him, but he can’t.

Seeing that, Frisk removes their magic.

The group of monster children, Derrick, Bernard, and Frisk all walk together back to the rest of the guards and head to the town hall.

Sans steps out of the shadows, and follows Bernard and the monster kids; turns out he was following them as well. Frisk wonders how much he saw.

Frisk continues to the meeting room with Toriel, Asgore, and their parents.

‘It looks like they redid the doors so that Asgore could fit easier, that’s a good sign.’

 

Over all, the meeting is fairly boring.

The council members demand to know what monsters are planning, and what the shimmering light in the distance is. Toriel tells them everything. Asgore remains mostly silent, only speaking to back Toriel up. Same with Marceline and Conrad.

It goes on like that for about an hour and a half as the council members interrogate the queen of monsters on every possible detail. Toriel, of course, was prepared for this from the beginning.

Frisk doesn’t really pay much attention, it’s obvious the adults are ignoring them, but when the council members ask who exactly put the barrier up, the adults come up blank; they forgot what Sans had said earlier.

So Frisk chimes in, “it was a boy that goes by CU-270. Sans calls him a ‘Void Born,’ he got the Artifact and sealed the creepy blob of humans away.”

The mention of a “Void Born sealing something away” instantly silences the councillors who are muttering among themselves in disbelief of Toriel’s testimony.

The Elder stands, and asks, “are you absolutely sure he is a ‘Void Born?’”

Frisk nods, “yes, I trust Sans.”

The councillors begin whispering to each other and the Elder. Frisk can barely make out that they are talking about some prophecy.

One of the council members ask, “and… where did this ‘Void Born’ come from?”

Frisk thinks for a moment, and replies, “he came from a secret human lab. The monsters there fought against the humans and killed most of the people they experimented on, but instead of killing CU-270 they left him there. I think they felt bad for him, or they couldn’t kill him.”

The councillors start talking loudly amongst themselves over the possibilities.

After a few minutes, the Elder silences the councillors and speaks again, “two months ago we received a document from the Sanctum, it contains prophecies from the Yellow Sage. They are very old. Many scholars believe they have already been fulfilled, so at first we thought we received it just for memories’ sake… but if what you are saying is true… the implications are dire.”

The Elder looks to Stacy, who is by her desk at the door, and requests,
“Stacy, please fetch the Sage’s letter.”

She responds politely, “yes, Elder, pardon me while I fetch them,” and leaves.

The room is filled with silence when Stacy leaves.

When she returns she starts to go to the Elder, but he points her to Frisk, and says,
“These prophecies… the only one they can be directed to at this time is Frisk. They are a red SOUL.”

Stacy complies, and hands the old piece of folded parchment to Frisk.

Frisk opens it and reads it:

 

“To the one born red,

A tale through time has been whispered in my ear, a warning to be harkened:

In darkness deep, through crazed devotion, a boy was born without emotion.
From womb of void, far darker than night, they pulled him out to show him the light.
With twisted SOULs, and in vile delight, to make him kill they forced him to fight.
His heart, his SOUL, though torn to pieces, to love, it seems, he never ceases.
Though far from life, he can never die. Eternal life, the greedy imply.
His curse-ed mark, and his hollow heart, shall cause their plans to shatter apart.
In their hubris, evil humans laze; h arming monsters shall number their days.
A spark of hope shall light a great flame. The monster's lives they all shall reclaim.
When darkness falls, and swallows up light, the boy of void shall seal the Great Blight.
Prepare yourself, gather up your might! When days go red, with you he shall fight!
The boy of void, though he appears frail, over the world his SOUL can prevail.

 

Frisk hands it to their mom after reading it, and asks, “what does it mean?”

The Elder answers, “it means, Frisk, that you need to leave to the Sanctum, learn how to use human magic, and learn as much as you can about your abilities as a red SOUL. You are the only one that can stand against this threat, Frisk… I’m sorry. I think you will quite like it there, however. With that being said…”

The Elder turns slightly to the counsillors and continues, “I believe the monsters. I do not believe they are plotting some devious plan to wipe us out, they could have already done so if they wanted. With that being said, we received some notes from a ‘Ms.Thing’ earlier today -requesting to allow monsters to assist with farming- and I do not think that is a good idea at this time; unfortunately, the relationship between humans and monsters is too strained for that.”

The councillors are not in full agreement, but the Elder silences them and says, “the meeting is over.”

Grumbling, the councillors get up and leave.

The Elder stays and waves Frisk over, “come here, child.”

Meekly, Frisk gets up and approaches.

From a sleeve, the Elder pulls out a rolled and tied piece of paper. “Keep this with you until you reach the Sanctum, then show it to one of the teachers. They will give you a place to stay, and everything you will need. I advise you bring your mother along with you, I am sure she would appreciate it.”

Frisk nods and takes the paper.

The Elder pats them on the head and departs.

Looking back to everyone else, Frisk puts on a subtle face of distress. Aside from going to the Underground, they’ve never left the village. They can’t bring all of their monster friends, either… and they won’t be able to play around in their awesome manor…

Marceline holds her hand out for them, and says, “don’t worry, my darling child, everything will be fine. And, contrary to what the Elder said, there is no need to invite me; I will be going with you. We’ll start preparing when we get home, OK? Come on, we need to go now.”

Frisk nods and grabs their mom’s hand as the group departs.

It seems Bernard is still “talking” with Derrick, but the monster children are with Sans and some guards waiting to leave.

Sans looks over, “hey kiddo. why the long face?”

As neutrally as they can, Frisk says, “I have to go to the Sanctum, and only my mom can come with me. I wont be able to hang out with you guys anymore.”

The two groups join together as they continue talking, and leave the town hall.

Hoping to lighten the mood, Sans says, “ah, froggit about it, i'm sure there’ll be plenty of kids you can horse around with. bee-sides, it isn’t like you’re beaver coming back, right?”

A little happier, though still somewhat disappointed, Frisk says,
“yea, I s’pose you’re right. I’ll still miss you guys though.”

Sans and his group stop at an intersection, and so does Frisk.

After ruffling Frisk’s hair, Sans says, “well you always miss because i'm too fast for ya… but i bet we’ll be a lot closer than you think. anyhow, i need to take these kids back to the monster camp. see ya later bud.”

Frisk, Sans, and the monster children all wave goodbye as the group splits up.

As Frisk’s group eventually arrives at the manor, without incident, they take a moment to SAVE at their star outside their manor… Just in case.

* FILE SAVED.
* FRISK FEELS REJUVENATED.

 

As they are about to enter the manor, Frisk hears something like a “psst” behind them. Turning to look, they see a suspicious yellow flower. ‘Flowey?’

Curious, Frisk says, “mom, I’m gonna play outside for a little bit, OK?”

She responds, with a voice of caution, “alright little angel, just remember to stay safe. Don’t leave the yard, OK? And please come in when lunch is ready. I suppose we can pack your things after dinner.”

Frisk replies with a playful tone, “OK, mummy.”

They wait for the door to close, then approach and whisper, “Flowey? Is that you?”

From behind them, they hear Flowey, “no, you idiot, I’m over here!”

‘I really should have noticed the smaller size and lack of face…’

Frisk turns and finds Flowey, he’s hidden as much out of sight as possible.

Quietly, Frisk says, “let’s go to the back yard, less people will see us talking.”

Flowey burrows away without responding, so Frisk takes that as an agreement and walks around to the back yard.

Flowey’s waiting for them, “what took ya so long?”

After sticking their tongue out, Frisk says, “I have itty-bitty legs!”

Looking at their legs, Flowey shrugs with his leaves but doesn’t say anything else.

So Frisk has to take the initiative, “what’d you wanna talk about? Just letting me know you’re here?”

With a sigh, Flowey says, “I wanted to tell you to stop being an idiot. You were trying too hard to save them, and you kept failing, and dying. It was pretty funny to watch, actually, but after the fifth try it was kinda just sad… don’t expect me to help again, understand?”

Frisk smiles and nods,
“thanks, Flowey. I won’t… but we should hang out more. Everyone needs friends, ya know.”

Flowey looks away and seems to consider it for a while, then looks back and replies,
“I’m not sure that’s a good idea…”

Frisk looks subtly disappointed, and says,
“I have to leave to the Sanctum, it’s really far away, are you sure you wont hang out with me?”

Once again, Flowey looks away, seemingly considering it.

But, instead of saying anything, he burrows away.

Sighing, Frisk goes back inside.

Then a strange thought enters their mind. ‘Why haven’t the bugs started chirping?’

They decide not to think too much about it, it’s probably nothing. ‘All the monsters being in the forest are probably the reason they are quite… maybe Flowey got rid of them so they won’t eat him?’

Frisk gets another idea, this one for the manor.

They have access to magic, and Alphys is really good at making stuff… so maybe it’ll work.

Excitedly, Frisk runs to go talk to Alphys about their idea.

Running through the house at a dangerous speed, Frisk checks the Lab first.

As expected, a yellow lizard is sitting at the work table.

Looks like she’s working on something for the Aircraft.

Frisk speaks up, their excitement seeping into their voice,
“hey Alphys! I have an idea I wanna run by you.”

Surprised, Alphys jumps a little in her stool, but when she realizes who it is she calms down.
“Sorry Frisk, I’m still a little on edge from earlier... What’s your idea?”

Attempting to find words for their idea suddenly fails… So Frisk replies,
“gimmie a moment, I need to get some paper so I can write it down,” and runs off to their playroom.

They return a few minutes later with a paper with some drawings on it, “alright! So, I was thinking… what if we put giant robot spider legs onto the Manor? And like… enchant them so they can move it! We could use the generator to power them too! That way, when I go to the Sanctum, everyone can come with! Oh Oh Oh!! Or we could make a door that has a little nob to select a destination and go there! We’d have to set up a door in the Sanctum, but after that I could come home every day! OH!!! What if we did BOTH!?”

They hand the paper to Alphys, it reads, “Frisk’s Moving Manor.”

Frisk, attempting to ignore the trauma they went through today, is powering through with fanciful ideas of magical moving castles with doors that open up to other doors. Which, quite frankly, is perfect for a magical-anime-warrior-princess.

Not wanting to crush their hopes, but also wanting to make sure they understand that there are limits to what is possible, Alphys says, “s-sure! I can do that! J-just… *sigh* … I… I d-don’t actually think I can do that… S-sorry Frisk.”

A little disappointed, but glad to see Alphys correct herself from lying, Frisk asks,
“what if we get Sans and Papyrus, and Undyne, and all the engineer monsters to help?”

Alphys sighs, puts what she is working on down, and hops off her stool to put her hand on Frisk’s shoulder. “Frisk… I… As impressive as it is that you have Sans’ j-jacket, I don’t think you’ll get him to work, but beyond that… it would t-take a really long time, even if it were possible. You’d probably be back by the time it’s all f-finished. Maybe we could do the door idea, but… I don’t want to get your hopes up.”

Frisk is pretty disappointed, and it’s slightly visible on their almost-not-subtly saddened face.
“OK, If you say so. I guess I’ll go do my homework now. I’m behind a little.”

And so, a sad Frisk leaves the Lab and goes to make tedious marks all over a few sheets of paper… but, to their surprise, Toriel is teaching them today.

It’s a really nice lesson and they are cheered up.

After practising math, art, and English, Toriel adds on magic practise.

She has Frisk practise making a small fireball and increasing its size, and then shrinking it back again.

It was a bit scary at times, since the fireball didn’t always want to listen, but practise makes perfect…

Fortunately, you can’t hurt yourself with your own magic.

Frisk wonders if Sans would be willing to teach them magic again…

After the lessons with Toriel is over, and a small lunch, Frisk wanders the manor for a while.

Papyrus is dealing with an explosion of socks in the hallway where Sans’ sock prank is, so they leave him be.

Thing is practising the piano in the ballroom with Marceline…

Frisk snickers as they think, ‘Not bad for a beginner. I guess it helps to be… all hands.’

It reminds them about the “Monster Mash” they were going to host, but with all that has been going on it looks like that won’t be happening…

Frisk also notices that their mom is sewing two red pieces of cloth together… looks like Papyrus’ cape.

They continue walking through the manor, hoping to catch Sans setting up a prank; but they don’t find him.

Undyne is in the Living room, doing some stretching exercises… Frisk decides not to bother her.

Seeing Undyne stretch makes Frisk think about their last session of “Anime-Warrior-Princess” training… Bernard hasn’t had time for a lesson for a few weeks now, with all the scouting and what-not going on. Now it seems like they won’t be able to go to another one for a while… maybe never.

The reality of their situation slowly sets in, and they start to remember everything that has been happening lately… so Frisk decides to sit in their room and talk to Chara’s SOUL.

Frisk knows Chara probably can’t hear them, but… they really don’t think they should burden anyone else with their problems.

Throughout the entirely one-sided conversation, however, it seems like Chara’s SOUL moves in reaction to what Frisk is saying. They float lower when it’s something sad, and higher when it’s happy… Maybe… Maybe Chara can hear them?

Frisk gets an idea… They pull out a piece of paper, and write a bunch of letters all over it and hold it for Chara to float over to the letters they want to use.

It doesn’t really help since Chara can’t move that much… but they get an idea and decide to go to Alphys with it.

This time though, Frisk is sure she can do it; so they draw a rough design for their idea and head out.

Frisk brings Chara’s SOUL with them so they can better demonstrate.

When they arrive, however, it seems that Alphys isn’t in the Lab. So they head to the backyard to see if she’s there, but she isn’t…

They decide to send her a text instead of trying to chase her down.

Frisk’s phone reads 2:13P.M. March 29th, 2045|No Messages

___________________________
< To: ALPHYS:
Hey, wehre are u?
___________________________

From: ALPHYS >
I just got back to the lab, why?
___________________________

< To: ALPHYS:
I had an other idea!
___________________________

From: ALPHYS >
Oh, Uh… OK. Well, you know
where to find me.
___________________________

Frisk isn’t entirely enthused about how Alphys worded her last message, but they’re sure that when she hears their idea she’ll be more open to it.

Determined, Frisk walks back to the Lab.

When Frisk enters, Alphys looks over and says,
“s-sorry Frisk… I’ve been… really stressed out lately. I didn’t mean to sound-”

Frisk understands, so they cut in, “it’s OK, Alphys.”

With a brief sigh of relief, Alphys asks,
“so, what is your idea? And… why do you have Chara’s SOUL with you?”

Excitedly, Frisk sets up the demonstration. They set Chara’s heart shaped SOUL container down, and place the paper with their design on top of it.

Frisk clears their throat, holds up their pointer finger, and speaks in a pseudo-scientist voice,
“here we have the in-dangered Chara!”

They point to Chara’s SOUL container,
“as you can see, they are floating within this nice glass container. But… is that floating aimless?”

A brief pause for dramatic effect, with one arm across their stomach and the other on their chin with their fingers in an L shape to appear thoughtful.

Frisk points into the air as they continue, and makes other gestures while they speak, “I THINK NOT!! As I was… conv-… Converz- … As I was speaking out loud, I noticed that Chara would float higher when they heard something happy, and lower when they heard something sad… So… This leads to the question… Can this be used for communes-ication?”

Returning to their exaggerated thoughtful pose, Frisk pauses again for dramatic effect.

Continuing, Frisk points their thumb to themself briefly before putting their hands on their hips, “I THINK SO! While my first design was… not very good, they clearly showed an effort, but they were not able to utilize my make-shift Ouija-board… So I had a thought… ‘what if the brilliant Doctor Alphys were to make a gizmo that tracks where Chara is floating, and use that to move a cursor around like in one of those old video games? Then they would be able to speak!”

Chara bobs a little in their container, though Alphys can’t see it due to the paper.

Alphys considers the idea… and though it’s not likely to work, Frisk is right; it would be pretty easy to make. Alphys is just worried that if she makes it, it will get their hopes up… She has never seen a SOUL react to anything, so it could just be their over-active imagination…

She decides to do it anyway,
“A-alright Frisk, give me a few hours and I sh-should have something ready by dinner. OK?”

Frisk smiles wide and runs up to give Alphys a hug, “thanks Alphys! Oh… maybe you could also put it in a backpack or something? Carrying Chara around in my arms is… not super fun.”

Alphys replies, “Mmm! OK, I-I’ll see what I can do. I’ll send you a text when it’s done, OK?”

Nodding, Frisk says, “Alright! I’ll leave Chara here so you can test it!”

Internally, Alphys doesn’t think it will help, but she nods and mutters, “a-alright… see you later.”

 

When Frisk leaves, Alphys thinks to herself, ‘what have I gotten myself into?! I don’t know how I’m going to make this right… maybe I’ll just… throw something together? No… No I should make it right, then at least I will have done everything I can to get it to work…’

Alphys picks up the heart-shaped SOUL container with Chara’s hollow SOUL within and sets it on the work table. She places Frisk’s unusable, but adorable, design attempt aside.

As she works, she continues to think to herself… She’d talk out loud like she used to, but ever since she started working around others she has become more self-conscious.

‘First things first… How would I track their movement? And what should each movement do? They don’t have a lot of room, so I have to make it all count… It seems they can move in 6 directions: forward-back, up-down, and left-right… OK so… Frisk’s idea of using it like a cursor might work, with them moving back to confirm the letter selection and forward to send the message…’

With that idea in her head, Alphys proceeds to make a frame to hold all the parts. She decides that a simple x shaped frame would be enough, with sensors made to detect magic on each corner, and one in the middle… Then when two sensors have a higher input, that is the direction Chara moved. When the single middle sensor receives a high input, it is activated, neutral when Chara is in the middle, and then activates again with a different signal when it has a lower, or no, input…

Making a beta-frame is easy enough, it only takes about half an hour to throw together. She just needs to find where she put her spare magic sensors from her attempts to upgrade the Aircraft.

It doesn’t take her long before she finds them… ‘I’m going to have to make more of these soon…’

With the rough beta-frame completed, she attempts to test it… but the container is preventing magic from escaping, so, when she places the sensors against the glass, they don’t read any input… and she remembers that the center of Chara’s SOUL doesn’t even have anything there, so that sensor is useless.

Scrapping that idea, she thinks, ‘maybe an inverted Y frame would be more efficient? Seems I will need to use cameras… they will have to look for Chara’s SOUL differently, but it should be fine. I won’t even need a fourth camera. I can triangulate their position using the cameras easily enough for left-right-up-down movement, and for back-fourth movement it can just detect where the edge of Chara’s SOUL is in all of the cameras… A camera in the center would be useless, since there isn’t anything to see there, so instead… I’ll use that space to store power for everything.’

Alphys slowly starts nerding out over all the possible extra features she could add to it, until she remembers that she can’t even tell if Chara can see or hear. ‘It’s unlikely Chara can actually hear anything… more than likely they would be responding to how Frisk looks… but does that mean they can see? And if so… how?’

Alphys decides to do a couple of tests to see if Chara can see.

The first test is simple enough, She writes “move up and then left if you can read this” on a card, and shows it to what she thinks is Chara’s front…

After a few moments nothing seems to happen, but then Chara moves.

Alphys begins to get really excited, but she dampens her excitement until she knows without a doubt.

The next test is slightly more difficult, she writes, “Move Up, Right, Left, Right, Down” on another card and shows it to Chara.

Chara responds faster this time, and executes the commands precisely.

Ecstatic, Alphys squeals out, “OMG! THIS IS SO COOOL!!”

She starts happily thinking of all the things she can do to help Chara communicate… until she’s filled with horror as sudden realization washes over her.

Her face pales, she starts sweating profusely, and begins hyperventilating…

As she remembers the Six SOULs.

The Six SOULs are still being kept in the barrier chamber, until such a time that monsters can properly apologize.

If Chara can see… then those poor SOULs surely can as well. Chara is hollow, so they may not feel much about their situation other than annoyance… but the Six are not. Are they afraid? Have they lost all hope? Have they gone insane?

Undyne rushes into the room, feeling that something is wrong with her partner, and tries to calm her down.

In a reassuring voice, Undyne says,
“hey babe! What’s wrong? You need me to punch a PUNK in the FACE??”

Undyne helps Alphys catch her breath, and Alphys begins crying as she tells Undyne what she discovered…

The new information weighs heavily on Undyne’s mind as well, but she does her best to maintain her composure, “I-… I’m s-sure it’ll be fine babe! I mean… We… we didn’t even know! And… And now that we know, we… we can fix it! Right?? Besides… you weren’t even the royal scientist when all that happened! No one was! I-I bet the old royal scientist had some plan for them before he vanished!”

Even with her restraint, the sheer horror of the situation paints itself clearly on her face.

After an indeterminate amount of time, Alphys and Undyne gather themselves from the shock of the news… Alphys is almost too scared to see if Chara can hear… but she has to know now.

She has to know if the Six could hear everything that has happened the entire time. She has to know if they’ve been left in complete, maddening silence, this entire time…

Undyne stays with her for support, though Alphys never says what she’s doing.

Knowing that Chara can see, Alphys writes on another card with more instructions, “If you can hear me clap my hands, move Up, Down, Left, then Right.”

After showing Chara the card, she waits for a few moments before clapping a couple times.

Chara responds as requested.

Horrified by the implications, but softened by the previous discovery, Alphys does her best to remain calm as she concludes what it means. ‘So… they can hear after all… That means not only have six humans been killed, but their SOULs have been held hostage and unknowingly tortured with confinement, silence, the sounds of other humans being killed, and solitude for hundreds of years… Those poor humans…’

Alphys does her best to hold back her tears,
“w-we… we have to t-t-tell Asgore… He… He has to k-know…”

Undyne is not so sure about that, however… “Alphys… babe… I-… I don’t think that’s a good idea. The king… he’d NEVER forgive himself. If we’re gonna tell anyone, maybe we should tell Frisk? I bet they’d know what to do. I mean… they got us out of the Underground, after all.”

Alphys is hesitant… As good as Frisk is, and even after everything they’ve done, they’re still a child. But, at the same time, they caught on that Chara could hear them… so how long will it take for them to realize that about the other SOULs?

She decides to deal with it later. For now, she’s going to continue working on this device so Chara can talk.

Setting up the cameras takes longer, two hours to be exact, due to the programming required, and after she’s done she realizes that she doesn’t have a screen Chara can read to select letters; and they don’t have any working ones on the surface…She’s going to have to make a trip to the Underground to get one.

Alphys hasn’t been paying much attention to stuff outside but, from what she has heard, going back to the Underground is going to be difficult since humans are suspicious of monsters right now.

A knock at the door startles Alphys. When Undyne answers, Sans walks in.

Alphys and Undyne do their best to keep their composure, for some reason, they don’t think they should tell Sans.

In a more cheerful voice than he’s been using lately, Sans says, “so i hear you’re making a thing so chara can talk to frisk? that’s pretty cool. i guess i should've told ya sooner, but, unlike the other six souls, chara’s container isn’t putting them in stasis… the secret human lab didn’t have enough juice to activate that.”

Alphys and Undyne look simultaneously relieved and livid.

Continuing in his usual demeanour, Sans winks and says,
“wow, you look… really up set, are you all right? does the good news make you feel down?

Undyne grabs something and throws it at Sans, “GOD DAMMIT SANS!! YOU COULD HAVE TOLD US SOONER!!!”

Sans catches the object and sets it down, replying, “sorry ‘bout that, guess i didn’t expect frisk to figure it out as fast as they did. heh, it really came out of the left field. anyway, i should get going. apparently i promised frisk i’d teach ‘em how to use my special brand of lazy magic, and i’m too lazy to say no… see ya around.”

When Sans leaves, Alphys and Undyne let out a deep, relieved, sigh…

Alphys hugs Undyne, still shivering from the, fortunately, now invalid discovery.

Burying her face into her partners abdomen, Alphys mutters, “(thank goodness…)”

The two take a few minutes to relax, then another knock at the door alerts them.

It’s Sans again… it looks like he’s holding a box of junk.

He speaks before they can say anything, “oh yea, the monsters in the camp gave me this box of stuff for you. something ‘bout wanting to help with the aircraft project. looks like they got it from the river leading to the underground.”

Sans puts the box down and leaves.

Curious, Alphys checks the box… there are some small screens in it, as well as a bunch of miscellaneous junk. The only useful things in here are the screens, and they look more like they came from the Lab in the Underground than from the river. The aircraft doesn’t even need screens…

Alphys doesn’t think too hard about it, some of the engineer monsters probably threw a couple spare screens in before the box was taken. One of the screens is small and has a built in speaker… she decides to use that one.

Undyne, seeing her precious nerd passionately working on a project and no longer having the dread of her previous discovery, kisses her on the head and leaves to continue her combat practice with Conrad.

 

It takes a couple hours, and Alphys is half an hour late for dinner, but she’s finally done. The inverted Y frame has the three cameras that track Chara’s movement, a few battery packs for the power they need, and a screen to show Chara what letters they are selecting. Alphys manages to utilize the built-in speakers on the screen so that, instead of just displaying Chara’s message, a text-to-voice program will speak for them. They are even able to choose what voice says their messages, though the selection is limited.

They choose a masculine robotic voice for the default voice.

Though the set up looks heavy, it’s mostly made of plastic. The screen is also small enough, and has a high enough resolution, that it doesn’t need to be far away from Chara’s container; making it easier to carry and preventing it from causing Frisk to be off balance. She also put some padding on it, a couple shoulder straps, and a waist strap to keep it all stable. To make it easier for Chara to say things, Alphys added an auto-complete feature so they can select a few letters then select the word they want, a copy/cut/paste feature, and a dictionary in case they can’t remember what word they want.

Alphys and Chara test the set up before they go to the dining room.

…It’s a bit buggy, but it works.

To demonstrate how flexible and easy the straps are to use, Alphys wears the container on her back.

Chara thinks to themself, ‘This is OK, I guess.’

When they arrive in the dining room, Chara remains silent.

When Alphys gets confused looks, she explains, “Frisk found that-…”

Alphys remembers that Asgore and Toriel don’t know that the SOUL belongs to Chara…

She gathers herself and continues,
“S-sorry! Uh heh… Frisk found out that this SOUL can hear, and I found out that they can also see…”

She thinks back on her discovery and quickly adds, panicked, “In this c-container that is not f-fully active! And Frisk asked me to make something so that they can communicate…”

Alphys adds on, anxiously and loudly,
“FORTUNATELY THAT IS NOTTHECASEWITHTHESIXHUMANSOULSSODON’TPANIC!!”

Undyne, being in the middle of biting something off of her fork, puts her fork down and says, “babe… Sans explained it to them already… why are you wearing it like that though? It looks like it’s upside down.”

Alphys is embarrassed… she stares blankly for a few moments as she realizes that she did, in fact, put it on upside down. Chara must have been too shy to say anything about it.

Frisk walks over and helps her take off the SOUL carrier, asking,
“so what did you decide to name this device?”

She hadn’t thought of one, so Alphys just shrugs.

After strapping Chara and the holder to the back of their chair, Frisk thinks for a moment…
“All I’ve got is ‘SOUL Communes-ication-’”

Toriel interrupts, “it is pronounced, ‘com-mun-i-ca-tion’ little one.”

Frisk blushes lightly, “I-… I knew that! I was just being silly!… Anyway… The best I’ve got is ‘SOUL Communication Device’… I guess Asgore’s bad naming is rubbing off on me.”

Asgore smiles sheepishly, scratches the back of his head, and chuckles while saying,
“hey now, that is not fair!”

Sans asks, “how about socdev?”

Frisk thinks for a moment and begins to respond, but Chara’s device blurts out “I like that!”

Sans snickers and says,
“watch out, if you leave it laying around paps will never let you hear the end of it.”

To which Papyrus simply grunts, and starts eating his food so he doesn’t say anything; he’s still upset about the sock-explosion that went off when he tried to pick up Sans’ single sock.

With a nod, Frisk says, “SOCDev it is!”

As Frisk sits back down at the table, and Alphys joins everyone, Toriel begins speaking, “So, as I was saying, I think it is a wonderful idea to try resurrecting the six human SOULs. Though the world they once knew is very different, they would be welcomed with open arms. I am just not sure how feasible it is, since, from what Marceline has said, it requires a person with a strong green SOUL to perform a proper resurrection; and because magic has not fully returned to the Surface yet. Frisk only has magic now because of the time they spent in the Underground, so once they run out they will have to return there.”

Sans adds in, “yea, but the magic field will recover. it’s a slow process, but i think that, by the end of april, this little village will get a bit of magic again thanks to its proximity to the underground. by the end of the year the whole world will be covered in a light amount of magic, thanks to magic also being in space.”

Confused, Frisk asks, “why will the village get magic first? What’s so special about the Underground?”

To which Sans responds, “the underground’s located at the end of a major ley line.”

Marceline is quite intrigued by this, “I always thought that ley lines were no more than superstition.”

Asgore, after swallowing a rather large piece of soup-soaked bread, says, “a ley line to monsters is not the same as it is for humans. For us, a ley line is a crystal formation; not an imaginary line. These crystals form in the asthenosphere, right under the crust of Firma, and spread across Firma’s entirety. There are two known locations where these formations are the largest, and they splinter out into “lines” which then connect to smaller clusters. Every creature can innately feel ley lines with their SOUL, and so humans and monsters alike tend to be drawn to, and subsequently build on, ley crystal clusters. In fact, a majority of the crystals in Hotland are composed of ley crystals. Humans have another name for ley crystals, diamonds, I believe.”

Sans adds on, “yea, that, but ley crystals only store and release magic, they don’t make it. the surface is acting like a vacuum right now, so magic in the ley lines is gonna get pulled out till it’s all even.”

Frisk, content with the information they’ve been given, simply replies, “huh,” and continues eating.

After dinner is done, Thing ensures Frisk sticks around to help clean up.

When dinner has been cleaned, Marceline has Frisk begin to pack and gives them a list of the things they need to make sure to bring.

Some of the items on the list are suspect…

Curious, concerned, but also amused, Frisk asks,
“mom, why does the  end of the list say that I need twelve baby hands?”

Marceline answers in a falsely serious voice with a hint of amusement, “because my dear child, what else am I going to eat on the way there? You are not nearly tender enough.”

As Frisk collects the things they need, they check them off the list.

Tooth brush, check.

Sketch pad with Frisk-made paper, check.

Spare clothes, check check check.

Salt to ward off demons, check.

Blanket, check.

The rest of the list follows this pattern, Frisk thinks that their mom put funny things in to make sure they actually read the list.

It isn’t until Frisk is done packing and getting ready for bed that Chara says anything.

They ask, “Frisk, are you… are you going to try saving me?”

Frisk raises an eye brow, “why wouldn’t I?”

Chara replies, “I am not a very good person…”

Playfully, Frisk pats Chara’s container and says, “you’re just a kid, you can still change if you want to.”

There is silence for a while, but Frisk can see that Chara is going to say something.

Eventually Chara responds, “I guess… also… please do not tap the glass. It makes me feel like a fish. I want to feel more like an astronaut.”

Curious, Frisk asks, “want me to set you in the window sill tonight, so you can look at the stars?”

A quick reply, “yes, that would be nice.”

Frisk nods and sets them up on the window sill.

Chara says, “thank you, fair maiden.”

Making sure to turn their alarm back on, Frisk changes into their pajamas and goes to bed.

From the window sill, Chara says, “good night, Frisk, and… thank you.”

Sleepily, Frisk replies, “your welcome, good night, carry you tomorrow.”

 

The night is so calm, and the barrier is brightly shining…

The bugs are quiet, and the stars all seem to be aligning…



* The desire to help their friends fills Frisk with Determination.

* FILE SAVED.
* FRISK FEELS REJUVENATED.