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The Child and The Bone

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 “How old are you, Frisk?”

That was a loaded question. She fell into Ebott when she was seven however, she stopped aging when she hit eight. It was after that point where she began to abuse her ability to reset so it wasn’t surprising. Although time didn’t matter, she kept up with the ‘years’ that past, resets or not. If she would have allowed time to flow naturally, she summarized that she would have been about sixteen now. Not that it mattered. The moment she did allow time to flow, as it should have, it became clear that no matter how many ‘years’ had passed, she still had the mentality of a eight year old when it came to somethings. Her pension for losing her temper for one and her naivety when it came to another. So perhaps it was best to answer her father properly.

“Nine.”

Asgore had collected Frisk personally that Friday night and brought her home. Sans was still busy with delivering the invitations and he wouldn’t hear anything of it when the she told him she would wait for him. She was rather surprised when the delivery of the invitations went into the weekend but he assured her they would be done Saturday. She had the feeling however, that he was taking his time on purpose to dissect every single attendee in order please his paranoia about the event coming up. That was fine by her. After all, that’s the reason she pushed him to do it in the first place.

While Sans tended to the outside affairs with Papyrus, she worked with Aimè. Breakfast was now a mini work session where she would move with the man to plan out different odds and ends for her birthday. She became so engulfed in it all that she practically forgot about returning home for the weekend. It surprised her to see her father dressed up when he picked her up and to see him alone but she didn’t question it at first. She believed they would be going home but instead of doing so she was pleasantly surprised when he brought her to a restaurant. The conversation was light for the most part or so it was until the king became serious and asked her that question. He smiled at her gently.

“How old are you really, child?” Frisk stared at the man before frowning deeply.
“…If I accumulate the years, I spent in spite of the resets, I am sixteen going on seventeen. However, to simplify things I count properly with the years now. My first surface birthday happened when not to long after we came up. Therefore, when the humans ask, when our family asks, I say nine.” She grinned playfully. “But I will be ten, of course, in December.” Asgore looked down at his plate.
“Sixteen…  Eight years is a long time spent replaying the world as you know it.”
“Nine.” The king raised an eyebrow. She wasn’t surprised his that he was confused, the math often confused her herself. "Did you not seem... Younger when we were underground?"
“You probably are recounting deja vu of the years when I was younger. When I woke up in the ruins, I was seven years old. I stopped aging when I was eight.” The man frowned.
“That’s… You were so young…” Frisk smiled and shrugged.
“Age is nothing but a number father. You’d be surprised what horrors a child can be subjugated too.” Then again, he wouldn’t or rather shouldn’t be surprised. Looking down she picked up her fork and cut in to her cake. “You’re really bad at subtlety, papa.” Asgore released a deep laughter and sighed.

“I suppose I am.”
“Its okay. I still love you.” The king laughed at his child once more but she didn’t react to it. Frisk ate the piece and hummed happily only to look up at her father. “So, what’s wrong, papa? What’s on your mind?” Asgore paused for a moment as if summoning the words to speak.
“How are your studies going, child? I have received word from Aimé that he plans to host a celebration for your birthday within the manor for us to attend.” The king leaned back in his chair and his daughter watched him curiously. “I have the feeling there is more to it however.”

Ah, so that was what this was about… She was fairly sure now would be the best time to tell her father everything that had taken place within the manor. She hesitated to tell him anything about Helena but she would rather tell him than to tell Toriel. Originally she had no intention of ever telling her parents. Yet, she knew it was better to tell Asgore than to let it be exposed out of her control. Sighing, she looked up at him with a indignant look.

“This…is going to be a lot. But promise me I won’t be in trouble… Or Sans… Or Aimé… Or Undyne…. Or—”
“Frisk.” The little girl stopped short and looked sheepishly as she began to speak.

“I wasn’t lying. I do love it at the manor. It’s... Nice to be around humans who are nice. Humans who can teach me what I need to know. I’ve even started learning French though, I think that’s because Aimé enjoys speaking in French more than English…” She averted her eyes. “But at first not every human was willing to accept my presence… There was this lady… Madam Helena. She was my etiquette teacher. She was really helpful and taught me a lot of useful things that I—”

“Frisk.”

She was sugar coating it. Padding the situation, a lot more than she would normally need to. She knew it, he knew it… Frisk folded her hands in her lap and squeezed them.

“Helena hated me. Despised me. She wanted to make my life miserable and I allowed her to do as she wished. The reason for it is I believed that she could never do much harm… At first, that is. It started with a shove. Then a hand slap… Then it got worse. I didn’t tell anyone but the others understood something was going on. I deterred Papyrus and Undyne but you know Sans still knew something was up.” Frisk fidgeted under her father’s gaze. He kept his expression schooled but she could feel his rage. “I know Papyrus and Sans told you they moved into the manor to help out. That’s… a half truth. Papyrus came over the day before they announced that to have cooking lesson with me, yes. But just as I was to leave Helena came and immediately began to insult him as she insulted me. I lost my temper and in turn…well, I cursed her out.” She reached out and scratched her head. “And in return, she snatched me up and dragged me away. Papyrus ran to get Sans but as he did I was promptly punished.” Slowly but surely, the little girl moved to remove her glove. She revealed the scars and did her best to ignore her father’s growls.

“She continually lashed at my hands with a ruler. As she did, she continued to speak about you, about Toriel and the rest of the family…” Her eyes darkened as she turned them to Asgore. “However, the thing that made me snap was when she spoke about my mother. My birth mother… I was so mad I lunged at her.” Frisk put the glove back on her hand and sighed. “Chara isn’t within me any longer, papa… but…” She lowered her walls and allowed her father to experience her LV. “My LOVE is still there from the genocides… So, when I went after Helena I went after blood.” For a moment she fell into the memory of the incident before looking up.

“But Sans stopped me. He managed to restrain me and sent me off with Papyrus. It’s kinda funny though because not to long after, I found myself bolting down the hall to stop him from killing her. Aimé fired her promptly after and she was arrested. But no punishment we could ever give her is as bad as what Sans did.” Asgore remained silent as he stared into her eyes. She had forgotten just how intense her father could be but the reminder came when he scowled.

“Monsieur Aimé promised your complete and utter safety under his watch.”
“Papa you can’t be mad at a man for not acting when he doesn’t know he needs too. I should have told everyone immediately.”
“That you should have. But whether you are sixteen or five you are still a child and he is the adult. It is up to him to recognize the issues before anyone else should. Especially since he invited you there.” He wouldn’t hear her argument especially after seeing her scars. He reached out a clawed hand for her own and she gave him hers. Gently, the king removed her glove and traced over the scars as his eyes darkened further. “I will speak to Aimé about this.”

“That isn’t necessary, papa.” Asgore met her eyes.
“I believe though you say you understand your importance, you do not really understand it at times child.” He released her hand. “I am angry that this took place. I am angry that you and the others did not tell me about the situation. I do not want to have to go through extremes to make sure you keep me in the loop. To some degree I understand why you did not tell your mother. But I will not be kept in the dark. From now on when something in kind happens you will tell me, understood?” Frisk began to retort but the look on his face stopped her.

“I understand, papa…” She sighed only to cover her hand with the glove swiftly. “Be that as it may… That was a month ago… Ever since Aimé has taken measures to get rid of every threat in the staff. But we suspect a few who have left have opened their mouths. The ambassadors know now that we have an alliance though they don’t know the full details.” Frisk leaned back in her chair suddenly uninterested in the cake that rested upon her plate. “There is a tradition between them, one where the ambassadors attend each other’s birthdays. On December 22nd we will not only celebrate my birthday but the alliance. We will announce it properly in order to let everyone know where I stand with Monsieur Aimé.” Turning her head, she looked out the window.

“But I advised to do more than that. I asked for Sans to deliver the invitations.”
“Sans?”
“Aye. The others were shocked by my request as well until I explained. We cannot allow another threat so close to me without being aware of the issues they may pose…” A smile overcame her as pride in her decision filled her. “So, I sent Sans to judge each and every one of the attendees beforehand. You know as well as I what he can do, papa. It was the only real decision.” Turning her head back she shrugged. “But for right now that’s everything. He’s actually out delivering the invitations now. Has been for two days. I’m kinda proud of him for not taking naps in between but to be honest, that’s probably Papyrus’ doing.” She waited for Asgore’s approval and watched as he leaned back.

“Though enraged by your unwillingness to tell me what happened with your teacher, I am proud of you for taking over this situation.” She released a breath she didn’t know she was holding. “I will speak to Toriel and tell her we are attending a celebration for your birthday as well as to celebrate our people’s joining.” The king narrowed his eyes at her. “You will have to come up with a reason on your own however if she ever sees your hands.” Frisk shrugged.

“I’m a nine year old who has a pension for trouble. It will not be to hard to find a reason.” Her father shook his head and gestured for her to continue her dessert. The two fell into light conversations but as he finished his food, Asgore hesitated to speak.

“When is the last time you spoke to Asriel…?”

Frisk paused her movements before placing the fork down. She didn’t know where this was going but she didn’t like it at all. When she brought Flowey out of the underground she along with Sans, surprisingly enough, managed to help the flower feel something. It had taken months but they managed. They had believed they had done enough to bring him into the group but the moment Frisk offered it…

“To be honest? Last September. I tried to get him to come into the group but… with you and Toriel there he wasn’t having it. I don’t know how much Sans’ revealed to you when he explained everything but, despite Flowey’s change… He isn’t keen on being near you.” Her heart broke at the sight of her father’s face falling but he was quick to attempt to hide it. “Its not because of hatred or anger, papa. However, it reminds Flowey too much of who he used to be. It reminds him of who he can’t be…”

“Despite his fears… he is still our Asriel.” Frisk smiled sadly. No, Flowey was not… “When he is ready we will welcome him back with open arms… Perhaps one day we can restore him back to how he was.” If he wanted to go back to how he was before. Still she nodded in response. From there on the king kept the conversation light and soon the two found themselves on their way home. The king was hardly surprised when Frisk fell asleep in the car but he didn’t dare wake her when they arrived. Picking her up gently, The king took her into their home and moved to take her to her room. Toriel came the moment she heard their arrival.

“There you two are—oh… Oh look…” Toriel smiled at the sight of Frisk and chuckled. “My… Our child is easily lulled to sleep by the movements of a car isn’t see?” Asgore snorted lightly but nodded.

“She was fairly tired when I picked her up to begin with. She studies hard.” Unwilling to disturb her more than he needed too, the king removed the child’s coat and shoes before tucking her into bed.
“Well, it is best we allow her to sleep.” She placed a hand on Asgore’s arm and smiled up at him. “Alphys is going to come over and share a movie with me. I do believe she is quite lonely now that Undyne spends a good time at the manor.  Would you like to join us?” Asgore shook his head but leaned down to kiss Toriel’s forehead.

“Perhaps later. I have some business I need to attend too.” The woman nodded and turned to walk away as he watched her leave. He remained in the doorway of Frisk’s room for a moment or so, looking over the sleeping child’s form before closing his eyes and sighing. It was best she was asleep… Closing the door, the king made his way to his office, minding his potted plants that rested around the room. Once he sat down, the man looked at his telephone before picking it up and dialing a number. He leaned back and closed his eyes as he waited patiently for the other side to pick up and once they did he released a deep breath.

“Hello?”
“Hello, I speak to Monsieur Aimé?”
“Who may I say is calling?”

The king opened his eyes, keeping them half lidded as his iris glowed to express his inner rage.

“King Asgore Dreemurr.”


"Would you like some more tea?"

The monster raised his hand to pass off on the offer as he placed his half full cup down. In his time with the monsters, Aimé found that there was little that he truly feared amongst them. Although Papyrus was intimidating, the skeleton was kindhearted and couldn't hurt a fly. Undyne was a threat in her own right yes, but even see showed more traits of loyalty, kindness and a sense of duty than maliciousness. No out of the group there were two he truly feared; the guard dog and the king. There was a obvious reason for fearing Sans. The skeleton was clearly and firmly on Frisk's side and sought to do things for her betterment. Yet, even Frisk admitted that despite her words and how he followed them, the skeleton's thoughts were a enigma to her as well. A being that could be everywhere was something that shouldn't be taken lightly.

But it was the small taste of his power when he took care of Helena that really instilled his fear. Even though the skeleton had been satisfied with his attempts to rectify the pain his ignorance had caused Frisk, he knew he was never forgiven truly within. He knew that if he ever messed up like that again, the skeleton wouldn't waste time judging him. Sans would simply deal with him and the consequences that came with it with out remorse. The thought alone increased his fear of him. There was, however, one who rose above the rest. 

The instant he received the phone call and heard the tone of the monarch's voice, he knew he had been told. Aimé did not argue when Asgore asked to come over the next morning nor did he inquire upon the reason for his tone. He was lucky that by morning, the king seemed to be calmer from what his tone indicated the previous night. There was no saving him from his scathing words that were to come though. Sans had promised not to tell the king however, the moment he got the call he realized Frisk never promised anything. The king folded his hands in his lap and stared at the human intently. 

"I received your invitation to the celebration of our people's unification as well as Frisk's birthday. Upon picking her up I took my little one to the side and asked her about her time under your roof so far." He paused. "When I left my daughter under your care I believed that you would truly watch over her. That she would be safe." Aimé moved to speak, but the king raised his hand again to stop him. "You will listen when I speak." The force he placed into his voice stunned the Frenchmen back into silence. "When I left my heir here I never believed she would return home with scars from a incident that shouldn't have even happened."

Asgore inhaled deeply as he turned his head to look out the window. "Do you have children, Aimé?" This question caught the man off guard.
"No." The king closed his eyes. There were somethings you could never describe to another person. No matter how hard you tried, no matter how much you yearned to express it; there were never any words one could use for some things. One of those things was the lost of a child. When Chara died, his heart broke for the little girl he had taken under his wing as his own. In the moment, he didn't believe it mattered if she was of his blood or not. That the loss would be one of the worst... He was quickly shown not too soon after that he was wrong. Oh so wrong... Losing Asriel placed the boss monster into a state of grief that quickly turned him into a warmongering lord. And in the moment, he didn't regret it in the least. Why should he? Here were these humans who knew nothing of them, who they had never bothered and without remorse they took his son away.

Took his baby boy away.

The moment Asriel passed he could feel it within every fiber of his being. Toriel could as well, he knew it. But he also knew his wife's sense of right and wrong was quick to overwhelm her sense of grief. He wished that he could say the same, but he could not. There was nothing he wanted more in that moment than to see the humans suffer the same way they made his heir, his child, his little boy suffer. Things were different now... Time spent with the loss of the two children and then his wife made his anger move from rage to grief. In his heart, he knew that hadn't been for the little girl he considered his now, he would still be in the pit of the mountain grieving loved ones lost.

So even though he wanted him to understand... Even though he wanted nothing more than to tell the Frenchmen what it was like, how seeing his last remaining resemblance of a heir bare scars that should have never been laid upon her flesh made him feel, it would be a useless endeavor. But that didn't mean that he couldn't put it into layman's terms...

"Then perhaps there are no words to explain the level I would go to in order to keep her safe; in order to keep her happy and make sure that no one, human or monster, ever hurts her again." Asgore smiled at Aimé but the act only put him on edge. "My wife shows her emotions more outwardly than I truly. She is quick to open her mouth where as I am content in seeing Frisk move upon her own will, guiding her when needed. But how I feel about my daughter is no different than Toriel. If anything it is just as fierce. Frisk is and always will be my baby girl. No matter how many responsibilities she takes on. No matter what political title she is given. It is because of that I have decided to speak to you to day." Aimé fidgeted in his seat under as the king opened his eyes revealing a unearthly glow to them. 

"I will not go after anyone for the situation that has happened. I recognize Frisk's own part in it for not telling anyone. And to my knowledge, Sans has adequately taken care of the situation. But if I ever see another mark upon my little girl that took place under your care..." I am afraid the alliance will be worth nothing." He cocked his head to the side and slowly the glow left his eyes. "From this point on, I will be kept in the loop. If Frisk fails to rely information to me, I do expect you to do so as a sign of good faith." Aimé swallowed in nervousness but nodded all the same.

"I do apologize for the situation that took place... I am remorseful that Frisk's time here was slightly defined by the scars on her hands." Asgore dropped the look and smiled softly. 
"I believe you my friend. If anything is needed for the celebration, do not hesitate to contact me. I implore you to continue keeping my little one safe."

Or else...

"I intend to, Asgore. I will still make good on my promise to you and your wife." The king nodded gently before reaching out and taking his tea cup.
"I believe you, Aimé. Now, tell me about these men who will come to her birthday..."


“No. I don’t believe you.”

“I want more than just words.”

“I’ve heard you say them before…”

“I won’t trust you no more.”

The child peaked through the door as she watched the woman inside with avid curiosity. She was supposed to be asleep. She was supposed to be in her room but… Her mother’s foot steps woke her and found herself restless.

“I. Don’t. Trust. You. No matter how many years we’ve worked together, I refuse to allow you near her… No. No, I don’t believe. Not for a second.” The woman didn’t hesitate to hang up and when she did, she spun on her heels. The child gasp, immediately giving herself away. When the woman turned around to look at where the noise came from her face remained hidden behind visible static. Still, the child didn’t seem afraid no not at all. Frisk was surprised at that, after all—her face was consumed by it as well…

“Is there a gremlin at my door?” The little girl huffed and pushed the door opened.
“I’M NO GREMBLIN!” Unable to help herself, the mother laughed before walking up to the little girl and picking her up.
“Of course! You couldn’t be a gremlin, because all gremlins are asleep right now!” The woman spun the laughing child around before hugging her closer.

…Frisk’s soul hurt at the sight.

“I’m awake! I can’t be a gremlin!”
“That’s right. And you’re to silly to be one too. What does daddy call you?” The little girl huff.
“Frisky Frisk.” Her mother laughed much to the child’s dismay. “I AM NOT FRISKY FRISK! I AM FR—”


“FRISK!!”


The little girl jolted up with a gasp as her soul appeared before her, the red heart illuminated the darkness. She barely gained a second before her door was pounded on once more. “HUMAN ARE YOU AWAKE?!” Freaking… Now she was. Frisk took a deep breath and messaged her temples as her soul faded back within her. She could almost hear Sans telling her to mind her mouth as she addressed Papyrus.

“Now I am Papyrus…”
“MY APOLOGIES HUMAN HOWEVER, LAST NIGHT SANS AND I COMPLETED THE LIST OF ATTENDEES.” Frisk looked over at her clock at her desk and scowled deeply.
“Papyrus. Its Sunday morning at nine am. This is the only time I get to sleep; this couldn’t wait?” Her mood wasn’t deterred by the uncertain shuffling she heard outside.
“MY APOLOGIES HUMAN BUT SANS IS ALREADY GATHERING SOMETHINGS TO SHOW YOU. WE MUST MAKE USE OF HIS PROACTIVE NATURE BEFORE HE FALLS ASLEEP ONCE MORE—!” Papyrus jumped back a bit as She door flung open. Unwilling to fix herself up, Frisk walked out of the room with her shirt pulled out of her pants, bare feet and a crow’s nest she called hair. She couldn’t find it in her heart to glare at Papyrus even in her pissy mood. But she did pout.

“I’m up.” Rubbing her hand over her face, she sighed. “Where is Sans?”
“HE’S IN ASGORE’S OFFICE! THE KING HAS BEEN GONE SINCE EARLY THIS MORNING AND HAS ALLOWED US TO USE THE SPACE WHILE HE’S GONE.” Frisk grumbled but before she could make a quip, Papyrus placed a hand on her head. “DO NOT WORRY FRISK! TO MAKE UP FOR HAVING TO WAKE SO EARLY ON YOUR DAY OFF I WILL MAKE YOU A STACK OF BUTTERSCOTCH CINNAMON SYRUP PANCAKES!!” Frisk smiled and stretched before proceeding to make her way to the office.

“Thanks, Pap.”
“NYEH-HEH-HEH!!”

Frisk didn’t even get to touch the door before it opened for her. She walked into the room and crossed her arms over her chest. “I am surprised that you are asking for me to wake up this early. I’m surprised you’re even up this early.”

“Trust me, kid, the moment I’m finished with this I’m taking a three week nap.” Frisk snorted and rolled her eyes before approaching the desk. She sat down and sighed.
“So what did you find—oomph!” Frisk grunted as a small pamphlet fell into her lap. At first, she looked at the skeleton heatedly only to have her curiosity peak as she opened the book. Upon scanning the pages, she groaned and looked at Sans. “You’ve got to be kidding. Pap made a pamphlet? IN THREE DAYS?” Sans chuckled and shrugged.
“What can I say? My bro’s productive.”
“Your brother is going to kill me by means of over working.” The skeleton ignored her as she crossed her legs.
“That’s a run through of the small fries. People who are on the fence who will easily be swayed or those who are genuinely curious and willing to work with you.” Frisk raised an eyebrow but he continued before she could speak. “It was easier to compile those people into one list—”
“Pamphlet.”
“—Together than waste time talking about each one.” The little girl scan through the pamphlet’s pages once more only to close it and place it on the desk.

“You didn’t bring me here to talk about these men. Who was the biggest issue?” Sans remained silent and for a moment she pondered if she would have to tell him to speak. He soon did.
“Monsieur Gabriel Majerus.” Frisk narrowed her eyes at the name. “The man is as arrogant as he is devious and that much is clear just from speaking to him. But when I checked his soul, I found a reason to worry.” Sans closed his eyes half way. “What’s your LOVE at kid?” She blinked. Why was he asking…? It wasn’t like he didn’t already know.

“Twenty, just like yours, you know that. Our only difference is my stats rose with my level.” She still didn’t understand why Sans’ stats didn’t. “Why ask a question you know the answer to?”
“Ever met a human whose level is in the double digits?” Frisk paused but shook her head.
“Unless they are military officials, criminals, police officers or you know straight up murderous psychopaths, no. Not amongst the ambassadors that is. The ambassadors only have baby levels one or two. Why?” The skeleton sighed and shook his head.
“In your words, this just got troublesome. Majerus’ level is ten making him the worse being who will attend.” Ten...? Was he... serious? Frisk stared at him in disbelief only to bite her lip. 

“Sans... It took a lot of deaths for me to get to level ten.” She looked at her hands. "By the time I was level seven I had killed about twenty residents of the Ruins, mama, Doggo, Dogamy and Dogaressa, Greater Dog, Snowdrake..." Her eyes closed. "And about sixteen residence of Snowdin..." Including Papyrus... The thought left a sour taste in her mouth but she continued and looked up. "By the time I had reached sixteen all the lesser boss monsters were dead... And most of the others... It was only when I got pass you and killed papa that my LOVE reached twenty." And she despised it. "If Majerus is at ten then..." Frisk tried to trail her thoughts off but Sans continued on.

"Then he, whether directly or indirectly, has a pool of blood flowing from his hands." Frisk shuddered at the tone of Sans' voice but the skeleton remained stoic. "It took multiple runs to get up to twenty myself seeing as Chara wouldn't always take over each reset. I digress... Majerus has been a busy boy before we have even entered the picture. I summarize his level was growing before you had even been born." His grin turned tense. "Perhaps we can get Aimé to look into his more... shady practices."

It was...unnerving to say the least. It was bad enough that this man had such a level of violence but to know that he had an interest in her with it... 
"Aye, we’ll call Monsieur after breakfast..." Sans hummed but her tone of wariness wasn’t missed by him.

"Problem, kid?" Where should she even start? With the psychopath that was angry he couldn't have her on his side? Or with the fact that said psychopath has had to have had a hand in deaths of a hand full of people based on his level alone?

"A few... Have you felt anyone else's LOVE?" He nodded.
"Four. All these ambassadors range from level one to four. If we compared them to your experience--" 
"Those four have about twenty some odd deaths upon their hands, average..."
"Give or take." The skeleton pushed four vanilla folders towards the little girl and she picked them up gingerly. "The thing that struck me as odd is three out of the four are rather close with Majerus." Frisk raised an eyebrow.

"And the fourth?" He shrugged and in frustration, she released a light scream.

"Fucking—"
"Language."

"Freaking—ugh." Frisk frowned deeply. "Okay, just... We have the information we need." She moved, stood up and moved to walk to the door. "For now, let’s take a break. We're going to make the wrong decision or act to brash." The skeleton nodded and stretched in his seat. "I highly doubt that Aimé will understand anything we have to say when it comes to LOVE... But he will understand if we tell him something seemed off about Majerus. I have faith that he will fill in the blanks we are missing." Upon reaching the door, she turned around. "We need to... Sans?"

The sounds of light snores caught her off guard and unable to help herself, she looked at the skeleton in utter disbelief. In his seat, Sans slept soundly. The stress and tiredness of the past few days caught up to him and the moment he knew Frisk was informed he passed out. Frisk huffed lightly but moved to him regardless. With little thought she hugged him and smiled just a bit. "Perhaps its best to let sleeping dogs lie." She held back her laughter as she watched his grin twitch at her bad joke and left him to sleep in peace.