How the Innocent are Twisted

"It's me, Chara." | "I'll be your best friend" | "Forever"

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1. Welcome to the Underground

My feet hover, mere inches off the ground. If I were to look down, which I don't do often, I would be able to see the hard dirt beneath me. If I stretched out my hand, and look through it, I could see the gray rock in front of me.

But I had stopped looking years ago.

I float just behind a large rock, staring hard at the yellow flowers, thinking about what's beneath them.

Things I'd rather forget.

The sun shines far, far above the patch of flowers, illuminating it, slightly. I crane my neck and glance at a small hole at the top of the mountain, a small circle of blue.

I used to think I could fly. But I have no power, not anymore.

No DETERMINATION.

So I float, slightly. And wait.

And wait.

And-

A small black shape appears, a mere dot from so far up. It grows larger, and larger, accelerating speed, and it crashes.

A soft sniffle emits from the figure, where they had landed in the patch of golden flowers. They lay there for a moment, staring up at the sky. I float over to them. My feet hover over the petals, and they don't touch them.

I don't want them to touch.

I stand there for a long while, watching the newcomer. Their eyes were closed, and tears made small lines on their cheeks.

I am not sure that they can see me.

Eventually, the human's eyes flicker open, and I saw the color of their SOUL in their irises. Bright red. So familiar.

My SOUL, their SOUL. The very same one, almost. And I want their SOUL. I want it to become mine.

I will make their SOUL my own.

“Who- who are you?” Their voice is soft, quiet. Afraid.

“Hi!” I say, as brightly as I can manage. “You've fallen down, haven't you?”

Sniffling, they sit up, and they nod.

“My name is...” I hesitate. No one has spoken my name in a long while.

Iamthedemonthatcomeswhenyoucallitsname.

My name is Chara,” the word sounds strange on my tongue.

“I am Frisk,” they say. And they stand, reaching out their hand as if to shake.

I ignore it, and head towards the exit of the flower patch.

“W-wait!” Frisk comes stumbling after me, their hands flailing slightly. “Uh, can I come with you?”

I turn. “Well, duh,” I say, exasperated. “Who else is gonna guide you through this awfu- lovely place,” I try for a smile, but it comes off as more than a grimace.

Frisk stares at me for a second, then smiles brightly. Innocently. Kindly. Then they turn for the exit. “Let's go!”

We walk towards the large purple doorway, or at least we try to. Frisk seems content with exploring every square inch of the room, walking over the flowers again and again, stopping to stare up at the small circle of sky.

“Come on!” I say, exasperated. “Let's go! We've got places to go, things to see,” monsterstokill.

They don't move.

“Frisk?” I say again, as loud as I am able. This seems to shake them out of their stupor, and the make a beeline for the exit, walking past me and into a field. I follow after them, shaking my head slightly.

“Where does the light come from?” they whisper once I finally catch up to them. I shrug, having no answer myself.

The earth trembles slightly, in a spot directly in the center of the bright field. Dirt and pieces of grass were flung aside as a small hole opened up in the ground, and a smiling yellow flower popped out.

“Howdy!” the flower said. “I'm Flowey. Flowey the Flower!”

I stumble backwards, pain suddenly bursting in my head.

That voice-

No. He was dead. I had made sure of it.

Traitorsaren'tallowedtolive.

“Hmmm... You're new to the underground, aren'tcha?”

A strained groan escapes my lips, and Frisk looks back at me in confusion. “Are you alri-” their words were cut off by Asr- the flower.

“Golly, you must be so confused! Someone ought to teach you how things work around here!”

Whyisthatvoicesofamiliar.

Howareyoualive

Youshouldbedead.

DEAD

“I guess little old me will have to do!” the voice, so familiar, yet so unknown. It grates like knives down my back, sending shivers down my spine. “Ready? Here we go!”

Frisk shifts their weight, and I hover behind them. “So-

“See that heart?” he says, cutting Frisk off. “That is your SOUL, the very culmination of your being!”

“What? Heart? SOUL?” Frisk looks down, and yelps. “Wh-what's that?”

In the center of their chest, in the middle of their blue and pink striped shirt, a glowing red heart appears. Their SOUL, just as Flower had said.

The hunger for their SOUL awakens inside me again, and it's all I can do not to reach out and wrench it from their body, even though I know I cannot.

“Your SOUL starts off weak, but can grow strong if you gain a lot of LV. What's LV stand for?” Flowey continues talking at a rapid fire speed, never slowing down despite Frisk's attempts to interrupt him. “What's LV stand for?” Flowey smiles broadly. “Why, LOVE, of course.”

I'm unable to tear my eyes away from their SOUL.

“Down here, LOVE is shared through... Little white...” he pauses, but continues to smile, wide and leering. “'friendliness pellets'”

“Are you ready?” A small circle of white dots surrounds him. “Move around! Get as many as you can!”

“Really?” Frisk sounds so full of hope and light. The pellets float their way towards them, the duller edges pointing towards Frisk. I can see the other end, the sharp end, glinting.

Just one dot strikes Frisk, hitting them in the shoulder. They cry out, darting backwards. They clutch at their shoulder. They stare in dismay at the smiling yellow flower, their SOUL near breaking, their HOPE nearly gone.

The flower's face morphs into a sadistic grin, and they stare at the human with contempt. “You idiot. In this world, it's kill or BE killed.”

Frisk stumbles back more, their face a mixture of hurt, outrage, confusion.

“Why would ANYONE pass up an opportunity like this!?” their eyes go from white to a dark, soulless black.

“Die.”

Frisk squeaks as a circle of bullets surround them. “Help!” they call out, for someone, anyone.

And then-

The human's HOPE is suddenly filled.

A fireball shudders into view, and barrels its way towards Flowey, knocking him away. His surprised yelp echoes throughout the whole cavern.

And then Mom walks in.

“What a terrible creature torturing such a poor, innocent youth...”

Frisk's gaze is no longer carefree and wondering. Instead they clings to their soul, their expression guarded and hurt.

Toriel speaks some more, but I don't listen to her. This is the same speech that she had given me years ago.

Many times, every time I died and would up back at the start, growing angrier and angrier with every RESET, having to sit through the same words, ACTing the same, showing MERCY every time, until I couldn't stand it, and I-

RESET.

“This way,” Toriel's voice jolts me away from my memories, and the “battle” has ended. Frisk is gently set on the ground, and their SOUL disappears. They looks around for a minute, confused. Toriel quickly walks away, leaving us alone.

“Chara...” Frisk looks at me, and their lower lip wobbles. “That was so scary! I don't ever want to be hurt like that, ever again.” Tears spill from their eyes, down their cheeks, onto the grass.

“You won't have to be,” I say firmly. “I'll help you grow stronger, so no one would ever be able to hurt you again.

“Thank you,” they whisper. They hold out their arms, as if to hug me, but I glide backwards, instantly wary.

“Okay, let's go,” I heading past them and into the next room, bright purple.

“Ooh, pretty,” they say, and walk up to the SAVE point. They grasp it in their hands, pulling it close to where their SOUL is.

I float behind them, near their ear. And I speak.

“Determination.”

Determination.

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