Would That Make You Happy?

Frisk is your child, the result of a teen pregnancy, but they've always been told that you're their older sister. In an effort to get away from your own abusive mother, the two of you end up falling into the Underground, where Sans is startled by this abrupt change in what had become a predictable pattern of events. Maybe your presence is what is needed to stop the endless cycle of Resets.

After many struggles, both internal and external, you and your found family reach the surface, only to face even more difficulties from the society you weren't sure you'd ever see again. You meet new friends and encounter people from your past, though for good or ill, you're not sure. Sometimes it's difficult to tell kindness from cunning.

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53. A Change in Perspective

Grillby is sweeping up the bar when he hears the door open. He glances up at the clock; ten minutes until closing time so he doesn't have any right to be frustrated. But he is, maybe just a little. The bar is empty and he just wants to get everything cleaned up so he can lock the doors and head upstairs to his apartment. Asgore's visit to Snowdin had stirred up his regulars and the guard dogs in particular were especially excitable this afternoon.

All in all, it had been a busy day and he's ready to relax.

He turns to give a stern look at the intruder but is surprised to see Sans sauntering over to the bar to take his place at the usual barstool. Suddenly curious and a little concerned, Grillby stops sweeping to man his post behind the bar.

Sans gives him a lazy smile. "how's it hangin' grillby?"

The fire elemental just raises a brow, resting his hands on the bar. He's known Sans for about two years now, ever since he and his brother moved to Snowdin. From what he gathered from Papyrus (because Sans never talks about before) they used to live in New Home. He wonders sometimes what brought them all the way out here to the fringes of the Underground.

But in the past two years the skeleton brothers have become a familiar facet of Snowdin. He's happy to see Sans. He's been suspiciously absent the past few days, though lately he's been showing up less and less than he used to. While Grillby's gotten used to the skeleton's company, he's glad to see him spending more time at home with his brother. And you and the child.

When he does visit, he talks about the two of you often. Usually this ends up with him leaning over the bar and showing Grillby pictures from his phone. It's a nice change of pace from his usual barrage of jokes and lazy grins. When he talks about you his smile is brighter, his voice lighter. He seems happy. Real happiness that isn't gleaned from making the other customers laugh. 

"that great, huh? well, i've got a surprise for you." Sans leans forward to rest his elbow on the bar, then reaches into his pocket and pulls out a small pouch full to bursting. He sets it on the wood countertop and it tips over, spilling out three gold coins.

Grilly just stares at the money for a moment before fixing Sans with a puzzled look. He gives a tiny shake of his head and jerks his chin at the bag in silent question.

"i'm fulfilling my promise to the universe," he says, like that's supposed to explain everything. Sans gives the pouch a firm pat, then breaks out into the biggest smile Grillby's ever seen. "paying off my tab."

Then, Sans starts to laugh. It's giddy and a little manic and all of this is starting to scare the bartender and he doesn't know what's gotten into his friend. The skeleton hangs his head so that Grillby can't see his face, shoulders shaking as he holds his forehead in his hand. The laughter starts to turn strained. Sans takes a moment to suck in a breath before another flood of giggles breaks loose. The fire elemental reaches out to take hold of San's shoulder, gripping maybe a little too tight.

The skeleton wheezes, shaking his head and looking up at Grillby. He's got tears running down his face and and an exhausted look in his eyes that startles him into letting Sans go. The skeleton's grin goes slack at the edges, but he gives another weak laugh and shakes his head. "what, never thought i was gonna pay you, buddy?"

Grillby's hands clench into fists on the bar top, furrowing his brow and giving Sans a pointed stare. He leans forward a little. What could possibly have Sans in this state?

Sans's smile falters a little more, raising a brow. "what's gotten into you, grillby? you keep staring at me. have i got something on my face?" He reaches up to touch his face, still grinning until his fingers brush over the trail of tears down his cheekbones. His smile is gone when he pulls away and looks down at his hand.

"...What happened?" Grillby asks, his dry, breathy voice filling the space between them.

Sans is silent for a moment, then his cheeks bloom with color as he gives his face a rushed wipe with his sleeve. "shit, that's a little embarrassing isn't it?" he says, forcing a new smile as he shrugs.

"...Sans."

"hey, no need to give me the 3rd degree."

"...Is everything alright?"

"i told you, i'm just keeping my promise to the universe. maybe now it'll stop trying to eat me alive," Sans mutters, the smile slipping away again as he heaves a sigh. His shoulders fall and he rests his weight on his arms, visibly deflating.

After a moment of hesitation, Grillby walks around the bar and sits next to Sans. He rests a hand gently on his shoulder, and waits.

Alphys is sitting on her ratty couch in a corner of the lab, watching anime with Undyne's legs across her lap. She's still trying to get used to this, being with her, well, her girlfriend. That itself is just weird. Girlfriend. And not just any girlfriend. Undyne. She has Undyne on the couch with her and they've been sitting here for the last hour just watching anime together.

Someone pinch her, is this really her life?

Even better, the two of them had only recently woken up from napping together upstairs, still recovering from their long night of helping Frisk. It was all worth it of course. Saving Frisk had bolstered her own confidence and it felt like she was repaying you for everything you've done for her. Not that that was the reason she did it! There's no way she would have let anything bad happen to Frisk if she had anything to say about it. She's just glad that her desperate idea of blending human medicine with healing magic had paid off.

She lets out a squeak as her phone starts to vibrate in her pocket. As she fishes it out with a sigh to settle herself, Undyne pauses the DVD and sits up. The fluid movement makes the muscles in the fish monster's stomach tense and through the skin-tight tank top Alphys can see the shift of muscle. It distracts her for a second, her eyes flicking up to Undyne's mouth before giving her girlfriend a nervous smile and answering the phone.

"H-hello?" Alphys says, forcing herself to look away and down at the floor so she can focus on talking.

"Hey Alphys. I hope I'm not bothering you," you say, sounding a little worried.

"Oh no, not at all!" she blurts out. Gosh, you're always so nice and considerate. "What's up?"

"Well, first I want to thank you again, so much. I don't know what we would have done without you, honestly."

"Please, it's o-okay! Of course I was going to help you!" Alphys says, feeling her face go a little red. Long, calloused fingers reach out to cup under her chin, turning her head to look at Undyne. She's smiling at her. The doctor feels the blush spread further across her face. "B-but you said that was the first thing?"

"Yeah, um... Sans and I were talking and I don't know if he said anything to you but Mettaton offered to let us stay at his hotel whenever we wanted? As like, an apology. Oh god I just realized, you don't even know." You let out a long sigh and Undyne's smile falters. She must be able to hear what you're saying. "Asgore came by the house today."

Undyne's hand falls away from Alphys's face and her eyebrows shoot up in alarm. "Are they all okay? I mean, they must be, but—!"

"Oh, is that Undyne?" you ask, giving a weak laugh. "Let her know we're all fine. He, uh, came by to visit because he heard one of the kids was out sick. Sans was able to get him to leave without seeing either of us, thankfully. But I admit, between what happened with Frisk and then Asgore... Sans and I decided that we could really use a weekend to relax. I don't exactly have his number, so—"

"Oh, he's actually here, i-if you want to talk to him," Alphys says, sitting up a little straighter so that she can see her small, makeshift kitchen. Mettaton is busy cooking, 'practicing' for his cooking show. He'd been making excuses like that a lot lately. Cooking meals for Alphys to get ready for a show, cleaning up her workshop slash bedroom so that he can get in the right 'mindspace' for an upcoming scene...

You make a sharp, agitated noise. "No. If that's okay, I'd rather not. Can you just give him the message?"

"Y-yeah, sure. Of course. When should I tell him you want to go?"

"Sans wants to go this weekend. It's a little soon after what happened with Frisk but... Alphys you wouldn't believe how quick Frisk is back to normal. I don't know what you did, but it's like they weren't even sick!"

Alphys can't help but smile, pleased at how happy you sound. Undyne's smiling again, nudging her shoulder proudly. "That's g-great!"

The fish monster reaches for the phone, pulling it out of Alphys's hand and pushing the button to put it on speaker. "Hey punk! Glad to hear the squirt's back to normal!"

You laugh, voice a little distorted by the phone. "Me too, Undyne. Believe me."

"So you guys are going to go on a date, huh? Like, a real date, not just going to Grillbys for once." Undyne throws her arm around Alphys's shoulder, leaning in close so they can both speak into the phone. Alphys bites the inside of her lip to keep from letting out a nervous giggle, her stomach doing flip flops.

"We went to Waterfall before. That was really nice," you say, a little defensive but laughing at the same time. "But yes, this will be a 'real' date."

"GOOD you guys deserve it!" Undyne pauses, then lets out a loud gasp. "Wait, what are you going to wear? You don't exactly have a big wardrobe there."

"Oh, I didn't really... I guess I'll have to find something at the shop."

Alphys lets out a startled squeak as Mettaton appears beside the couch, a large rectangle looming over them and wearing a chef's hat. He has a skillet in one hand, and whatever's inside is still sizzling. "Oh no, no, no darling! You will not be wearing any second-hand rags on this date! You let me handle this! When I'm done with you, you'll be absolutely ravishing!" He lets out a laugh, which cuts off abruptly. "I suppose I can find something for Sans as well. I don't want him to look bad on your arm."

 
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