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.


114. A Matter of Dates

The MTT Resort is the only place where you can find an almost even ratio of humans to monsters. Between the growing numbers of human staff and guests from outside the Line, this is where you and Deacon can most easily blend in. It also means that you tend to get mistaken for non-residents.

You make it to the entrance of the restaurant before one of the employees comes to intercept you. A young human woman gives you a bright smile, and according to her bright fuchsia name badge she goes by Toni. "Hi and welcome to the MTT Resort! Is this your first visit?" she asks, clasping her hands over her chest.

Deacon chuckles and shoves his hands in the pockets of his jeans but doesn't say anything. He just glances at you through the edge of his bangs, smirking.

Normally you'd be polite and correct her, but Deacon is a bad influence on your sense of humor. "Actually I've been to the original," you say, trying not to grin.

Toni blinks, not sure what to say. You think Deacon is holding back a laugh next to you.

"This one's a lot nicer. I like all the attention to natural lighting this time around," you continue.

"Hope, oh my gosh!"

You look over Toni's shoulder and there's Bo, dressed up in her formal waitress uniform and hurrying to meet you. Grinning, she edges her way past her coworker so she can wrap you up in a huge, pillowy hug. The wool around her neck is soft and smells faintly of something sweet, like vanilla and strawberries. As you pull away from each other she snatches up your left hand, letting out a loud gasp and taking a moment to admire your engagement ring.

"I heard that he got you one of those fancy human rings, congratulations!" she says, grinning from ear to ear and bouncing a little in her enthusiasm. "It's beautiful!"

"Thank you. Bo, it's so nice to see you!" you say. Her joy is infectious, leaving you smiling just as wide.

"It's so good to see you. How's Sansy? And oh, what about Frisk? Are they doing okay after that nasty incident on Halloween?" her expression turns somber, big blue eyes scanning over you like you might be injured.

"They're both fine, I'll be sure to let Sans know you asked about him." You realize that Toni is still there, watching the whole exchange with a bewildered expression.

"Bring him down here with you next time! I swear, I see more of his brother than I do of him nowadays," she says, resting her hand on her hip. Then, Bo follows your eyes and also notices that Toni is still standing there. "Oh! Toni, sorry honey! You don't need to worry about these two, they live on Ebott. Don't you recognize Hope?"

Bo throws her arm around your shoulders and turns so Toni can get a better look at you. You give an awkward smile and watch as recognition dawns over her face and she covers her mouth with a hand. "Oh!" she exclaims, eyebrows shooting up to hide under her bangs. "Oh wow! So you really... you were in the Underground! You really did see the original resort!"

"Hope, were you teasing this poor girl?" Bo chides you, pretending to narrow her eyes at you. You flush a little, feeling guilty.

"It's fine, I should have known!" Toni says quickly. "I mean, you were all over the news for like two months!"

"Honestly, I'm glad people don't recognize me on sight much anymore," you say, grimacing.

"Well, I can take this from here, Toni," Bo says, letting you go. Toni nods and gives you a final smile before walking back out into the main lobby. The sheep monster turns to face you, tugging on the ends of her pinstripe vest. "Are you here for lunch?"

Deacon clears his throat, and you realize you forgot him this whole time. "Oh!" you blurt out, turning to look from him to Bo. "Deacon, I'm sorry. This is Bo. Bo, Deacon."

Deacon turns on that winning smile, which Bo returns with equal radiance. He reaches for her hand and she gives it to him, giggling. "We've met before," he says. "Here at the restaurant."

"Oh, so you do remember. And here I thought you only had eyes for Muffet," Bo teases, nudging his shoulder with the hand he's not still holding.

"It's impolite to stare at other people, no matter how beautiful, while dating someone else," he says, and it's all you can do not to roll your eyes.

"So I guess that means you're not dating anyone," she says, winking and sliding her hand free from his. Deacon just laughs.

"Can you two flirt after we get some food? I was promised lunch," you interject, elbowing Deacon in the ribs.

"Right, of course! Sorry," Bo says, grinning and not looking very sorry at all. Oh goodness, this is all the world needs. These two flirts getting together.

Actually. If Deacon's problem with Grillby was a lack of communication, you know for a fact that Bo is nearly the opposite. She's showing both of you that right now. As she turns around to lead you to the host's station at the front of the restaurant, you catch Deacon's eye. Which involves tugging on the sleeve of his flannel shirt because he's too busy watching Bo's hips. He looks at you and you raise your eyebrows, pointing at Bo. His smile widens and you give a silent laugh, followed by an affectionate look.

Well, as much as you think he and Bo would be cute together, you think they both deserve to be more than just a casual fling. You'll have to tell him that.

She talks to the host for a second, telling them where she's taking the two of you before leading you to a table. The new and improved restaurant is beautiful, you have to admit. You hadn't managed to come down here since it was finished, and for some reason you imagined it would look like the old one. Mettatons everywhere. But no. This place looks like a proper, elegant restaurant. In fact you feel a little under dressed in your jeans and sweater, but as you spot a few other casual diners your worries ebb.

You and Deacon sit down and Bo hands each of you a menu. Disappearing for a second, she returns with a pitcher of water, using it to fill the glasses already waiting at the table. She's definitely standing closer to Deacon than you, but you don't mind. Her flirting will be far more productive with him anyway. When she does that with you it's just habit.

Opening your menu, you glance over at your friend. He's still all smiles, looking up at Bo and resting his chin in his hand. His own menu is pinned under his elbow.

"So how've you been liking Ebott so far?" Bo asks him, resting her hand on her hip as she shifts her weight to one leg. You can see his gaze drop to her waist and flick back up to her eyes.

"It's been great. I, uh, I'd say something that might be an innuendo, but that would sound insincere. I actually really love it here," he says, and you're surprised to see him look over at you. "I've made a fantastic friend and this is honestly a great place to live."

Bo looks surprised too. After a second she gives him a sweet smile, resting her hand on his arm. "Oh honey, I'm glad you're friends with Hope. She's a real sweetheart, isn't she? I mean, anyone that can charm a bonehead like Sansy's got something going for her, I can tell you that much," she says, turning that smile on you. You blush. "Well, I should let you two look at the menu, unless you know what you want."

"I know what I want," Deacon says, arching a brow at her. "Oh, did you mean food? I know what I want for lunch, too."

You snort, rolling your eyes as Bo giggles and pulls out a small notepad from her pocket. She looks at you. "How about you, sweetie?"

"My favorite steak shaped like a rectangle," you say, snapping your menu shut and passing it over to Deacon.

He stacks it on top of his. "Same thing. This is the best place for steak on Ebott, from what I've found so far."

"Got it, I'll put those in for you," Bo says, taking the menus from him. "Oh, and you know not to worry about the bill, Hope. Mettaton's still got a standing order to comp your meals."

Once Bo walks off, Deacon squints across the table at you. "So that's why you didn't raise a fuss when I said I'd treat you to lunch. You knew there wouldn't even be a check," he accuses. When you give him an innocent smile he rolls his eyes. "Well, next time we're going somewhere else so I can treat you properly."

"You don't have to," you say, though you know he won't listen.

He makes a noncommittal noise, still squinting. "Whatever. Not important. What is vitally important, right at this moment, is the fact that there are people who call Sans 'Sansy'. What the hell?"

Caught off-guard, you cover your mouth as you let out a spluttering laugh, loud enough that a couple at a nearby table give you an odd look. "I don't know. I kind of hate it," you admit, shaking your head. "When Sans and I came here— I mean, the original resort. Anyway, Bo was our waitress and this was the first time we met. And she was fawning all over Sans, I was so jealous. For like five minutes until she started flirting with me too."

Laughing, fixes you with an amused look. "Sans doesn't strike me as the 'fancy restaurant' type. Did he just wear those gym shorts?"

"No, thank you very much," you retort, huffing. "He wore a suit actually."

"He owns a suit?"

You roll your eyes. "Mettaton had it made for him. He actually put together the whole weekend for us, totally free of charge," you say picking up your glass of water. Taking a sip and leaning forward over the table, you don't even think because you're just too comfortable with your best friend when you say, "It's the least he could do, after he tried to kill me."

You and Deacon stare at each other as you realize what you just said. His eyes widen and he reaches across the table for your hand as you try to lean back and away from him. "Hope, what do you mean he tried to kill you?" he asks in a quiet, dangerously calm voice.

"I wasn't supposed to tell you that," you hiss, glancing around to see if anyone heard you. The tables immediately surrounding you are empty and you weren't loud before. No one is even looking at you. "Deacon, no one is supposed to know that any of the monsters might be dangerous!"

"Might be? You just said— And I didn't even think about why you might not be thrilled to work with him for almost a whole month! I thought it was just because he's such a showboat. No wonder Sans kept giving him those dirty looks, and, oh my god, now Papyrus is dating him?" Deacon is starting to ramble, a bewildered look on his face. You squeeze his hand and he focuses on you again.

"It was months ago. Back in the Underground, things were harder. Mettaton isn't that person anymore," you say firmly. "Look, I just forgave him a couple weeks ago. Please, just forget I said anything."

"But why? Why would he try to hurt you?" he asks, a pained expression on his face.

You pull your hand away, folding them both on the table in front of you. Biting your lip, you study him. He looks so upset on your behalf, so worried, you just don't want to lie to him. He said you could always talk to him. "Deacon, I'm only telling you this because I trust you. You're my best friend, and I know that the last time you found out about Soul... stuff you kept your promise not to say anything."

He sits back in his chair, picking up his glass and taking a drink. Nodding, he lets out a small sigh, waiting for you to continue.

"He wanted a human Soul. So he could cross the Barrier by himself," you say quietly.

"But that would have been suicide. Coming up here alone? The government would have torn him apart," Deacon says, gritting his teeth. You nod. "Shit... That... I mean if he'd killed you to get up here I wouldn't feel the least bit sorry for him, but... God."

"I know. But Deacon he's so different now, believe me. He regrets what he did." You hope your words carry the right weight, enough to get him to listen.

He holds your gaze, brow furrowing a little but he nods all the same. "Okay. I mean, I wasn't there, and if you say you forgive him then what good is it for me to not believe you?"

You let out a small, relieved sigh, because the last thing you need is two people you care about holding a grudge on your behalf against your will. Sans has been getting better but he's still not ready to let go. But, his feelings about it are more complicated, too tangled up in his fear of Resets. God, Resets, that's something you never want to have to try and explain to Deacon.

"Thank you. If it makes you feel any better, we abused the room service and made Mettaton pay for it all," you say, earning yourself a weak laugh. Deacon relaxes, which makes you feel better. "It was Sans's idea."

"Of course it was."

You end up telling Deacon how Sans managed to accidentally propose to you, in an effort to lighten the mood. Though you thought it might make him laugh, it actually has him surprised at Sans's sentimentality. Either way it has the desired effect, and by the time Bo gets back with your food he seems to have all but forgotten your slip of the tongue.

He and Bo make some casual conversation for a moment before she has to go tend to her other tables. She seems hesitant to leave, but when she does Deacon watches her until she's out of sight. In a word, you think he looks smitten.

You're smiling when he finally looks at you again, rearranging his face into a confused expression. "What? What's that look for?" he asks, picking up his silverware.

Chuckling, you point at him with your knife as you spear some vegetables with your fork. "You and Bo would be a cute couple," you say. "You should ask her out."

Deacon's attention drops to his steak. "You said she flirted with you and Sans while you guys were on a date, she's probably not being serious with me," he says, not meeting your gaze. "And I don't know, Hope, I was kind of thinking about taking a break. Figuring out what I want." He sighs, setting down his cutlery with a quiet clink of metal against china. He hesitates, and he seems to mull over something before deciding to speak again. Blue eyes flick up to yours, looking up through his bangs. "...What happened with Grillby normally wouldn't have bothered me. I would have been fine with just sex. But now..." Deacon shakes his head with another sigh.

"It sounds like you want more than just casual sex," you say carefully, worried you might say the wrong thing. He's trusting you with how he's feeling, opening up to you just a bit. You don't want to ruin it. "Maybe companionship? Intimacy? You deserve to have those things in your life."

His eyes break away from yours and he picks up his knife and fork again. "I guess," he says, but he sounds unconvinced. Unconvinced of what? "For now I'm just going to enjoy my time with my friend, if that's okay with you."

You smile, huffing a soft laugh. "Yeah, that's fine by me. But as your friend, I think you should ask Bo out."

"We'll see," he says, rolling his eyes.

"You two have been flirting since you first laid eyes on each other, don't give me that," you press, leaning forward over the table.

"Hope," he says, a gentle warning to let you know you're skirting dangerous territory.

You sigh, leaning back. "Okay. Just think about it."

"I'm thinking about it," he says, giving you and indulgent look as he starts to work on his steak in earnest.

The two of you move to safer, more mundane topics as you eat lunch. Work, Thanksgiving, Deacon even talks to you a bit about Sylvie and this weird noise she's started making. You don't know the first thing about cars, so you just sort of nod and make appropriate, sympathetic noises. Because even though you don't understand, you care that he cares.

"Well, well, look at Ebott's one and only human couple, out on a date," comes a sickeningly sweet, woman's voice. 

You and Deacon both turn at the sound and there's a human easing her way to your table. She's dressed in a snug skirt suit, blonde hair set perfectly in place. In one manicured hand she's holding a large cell phone, a stylus poised in the other. As you look closer you spot the press badge clipped to her lapel.

Deacon gives you a worried look, then returns his attention to the woman. "Look, we're just trying to have lunch—"

"Oh, I was just hoping to get a quick word with you two, I couldn't believe my luck spotting you both here," she says, ignoring him. She flashes a bright smile at you. "I'm Ashley, with the Ebott County Times." Ashley taps her badge, then holds her hand out to you.

You stare at it, uncomfortable, but shake it anyway because it would feel worse not to. She turns to Deacon and he follows suit, begrudgingly. With that taken care of she pulls out an empty chair between the two of you and takes a seat without an invitation, tapping away on her phone.

"So you two met here in Ebott, right? You didn't know each other before?" she asks, glancing between you and the screen as she continues typing.

"Yes, we met here, but—" you say, about to protest but she cuts you off.

"Mettaton said you two work together. Did you start dating while you were organizing that Halloween event?" she continues.

Deacon looks at you, a question in his eyes. You feel cornered, forced to make a choice you'd been trying desperately to avoid. He doesn't want to do this for you. It seems like he'll go along with whatever you decide. You clear your throat. "Deacon and I aren't dating," you say, pressing your hands on top of the table to steady yourself.

Which is right when she of course spots your ring. "Oh my goodness, well that was fast! Talk about a whirlwind romance, how delightful!" she croons, and you feel a flash of irritation.

"No, we're not together," you insist, balling your hands into fists. "We're just friends. Mettaton never said we were anything more than friends, the reporters just assumed—"

"Oh, Hope, you don't need to try and hide anything. I was the one who had that first interview with Mettaton. I could read the subtext," she says, winking at you.

"There's no subtext," Deacon says, drawing her attention away from you. His smile is forced. "Honestly, Hope and I are just friends."

"Honey, is this lady bothering you?" Bo seems to appear from nowhere, sidling up next to Deacon's chair. She rests her hand on his shoulder and looks down at Ashley.

"We were just trying to explain that just because we're the only two humans living on Ebott doesn't mean that we're dating," he tells her. Ashley just laughs, clearly still not believing him.

You start to reach for your phone. "Look, Ashley, I can show you a picture of my fiancé, he's—"

"Well of course you're not dating Hope, you're dating me, aren't you sweet pea?" Bo says, and before you or Deacon can react she bends down to kiss him. Right on the lips.

You do your best not to react, to seem surprised, even though a small part of you wants to let out a loud gasp. Ashley certainly does. Bo's hand grabs at the front of his unbuttoned flannel shirt and after a moment Deacon reaches up to cup the side of her face. When she pulls away they're both blushing, and your best friend looks dazed and more than a little pleased with himself. Bo smiles and covers her mouth, a soft giggle escaping her.

Clearing your throat, you turn on your phone and pull up a picture of you and Sans. You tap Ashley's shoulder, prompting her to snap out of her daze as you hold it out to her. "This is Sans. We've been together since I was in the Underground," you say, and start to tell her the truth.

After Ashley leaves, maybe fifteen minutes later, you bury your face in your hands and let the mixture of anxiety and relief wash over you. There it is. Soon everyone will know the truth, just like Asgore wants. Once you made things clear, Ashley actually surprised you with how understanding and apologetic she was. You hope that means she'll put a positive spin on the story.

Bo comes around to your side of the table, stroking your hair with one hand as she hugs you against her hip. "It'll be okay, honey. Try not to worry too much."

"I know, there's nothing I can do about it now," you say, taking in a slow, steadying breath.

"I tried to call Mettaton once I saw her at your table, he's good at dealing with those reporters. Every week or so we get a new one trying to do some kind of exposé on the hotel or the staff," she says, sighing. 

"Thank you for your help," you say, glancing over at Deacon. He's been quiet since Bo kissed him, eyes flicking between the two of you.

"Of course, anytime," she says, and you think you see her blushing under her soft, cream-colored fur. "I should get back to work, I asked one of the other girls to cover for me while I dealt with this..."

"Oh, Bo I'm sorry!" you blurt out but she shushes you, hugging your shoulders again before letting you go.

"Don't you worry about it, what're friends for?" she says, smiling.

Bo smooths out the front of her uniform, glancing behind her at the other tables, and as she's about to go Deacon stands up from his seat. He clears his throat, running his hand through his hair and giving her a small smile. "So, uh, do you want to go out sometime?"

Her grin brightens, blue eyes sparkling as you watch them. "Yeah, I'd like that," she says, nodding. "Let me give you my number."

As Deacon pulls out his phone and she reaches for hers, you have to resist the urge to let out a happy sound, hiding your smile behind your hands. No matter what ends up happening with Ashley's story, at least some good came out of it.

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