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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179. Enough Time

“What happened?” you ask Frisk, a feeling of dread settling in the pit of your stomach. With it is the undeniable sense that something very bad happened. It’s like an off-tempo beat in your Soul, and echo of something horrible that you can’t let happen again. For a moment it feels like something is wrong with the harmony of yours and Sans’s songs, but when you take just a moment to listen, to focus inward, it feels the same as it always does.

You press a hand to your chest and wrap your fingers around your locket.

“It’s that army man, the one who followed us here,” Frisk says.

“Jacobs?”

There’s another knock on the door, louder this time. It makes you jump and your heart is pounding in your ears. You hear Chris moving down below, making a frustrated, grumbling sound.

“It’s too late for this shit, I’m coming,” he mutters.

“No!” Frisk hisses, scrambling to the edge of the loft. “Chris, don’t!”

You follow them as they slide down the ladder, casting the front door a nervous look as Chris turns towards the two of you, a groggy, bewildered expression on his face. He takes in the frightened look on your face and his attention sharpens, glancing at the door. “What’s going on?”

“It’s that evil soldier from the Line,” Frisk repeats, grabbing his hand and pulling him away from the door. “He came to kidnap us to…” Their face screws up as they try to find the right words. “To… use us against Dad, I think. They’re doing something, something the bad people don’t like and you told me to Load because something bad happened. You said something happened to Dad.”

Sans has to be okay now. And whatever happened, he could change it, right? Frisk Loaded. He’d remember. You have to hope that’s true, because right now you have to deal with what’s happening right here, at this moment.

“Kid, how do you know that?” Chris asks, his brow furrowing as he looks down at them. You’d expect him to doubt, to not take Frisk seriously. Instead he looks worried, scared even. His eyes flick over to yours. “Hope?”

“I don’t have time to explain,” you tell him, shaking your head before turning your attention to Frisk. “What happened? What happened when we opened the door?”

Instead of another knock you start to hear the sound of metal scraping against metal. Oh shit, does he have a key? Or is he picking the lock? Frisk snatches up the can of mace from on top of the TV and presses it into your hand.

“He shoved Chris down and had a gun. He was going to shoot him if we didn’t cooperate,” they say, and you realize that their voice is trembling. Their whole body is trembling but they’re staying determined. This isn’t fair, for a seven-year-old to have to shoulder this much fear and responsibility. To take your safety onto themselves. “Mom, I don’t know what to do.”

“Can you Load again if things go badly?” you ask. “Do you feel strong enough?”

They nod.

“Go back up. I want you to be safe.”

Frisk only hesitates for a moment before scrambling back up the ladder. You watch them go, your heart in your throat as adrenaline makes you feel as though your whole body is humming in anticipation. When you look back at Chris he’s picking up his electric guitar (the Gibson, his pride and joy) by the neck and hefting it in his hands. The set of his mouth is grim, and he raises it like one might hold an axe over his shoulder.

The scrape of metal is still going as he flattens himself beside the door, and gives you a worried but surprisingly steady look. “Spray him as soon as he comes in the door,” he whispers, gesturing at the mace in your hand. “If he’s not—”

The click of the lock turning sends you fumbling to flip open the cap covering the spray’s trigger, and if it wasn’t for the fact that the door sticks for a second as Jacobs tries to open it you wouldn’t be ready in time. But, thank god, you are. The door bangs open and there’s a moment where he’s raising the gun in his hand before you clench your fist and jam the button down as hard as you can. His arm flies up to try and cover his face as he lets out a cry of pain and surprise.

That’s when Chris takes the opportunity to smash the guitar into the back of Jacobs’s head. There’s a loud crack and for a moment you think that maybe he killed him, but then you see that it’s the Gibson’s neck that snapped and not Jacobs’s. There’s a brief, cruel moment where you regret that it wasn’t the other way around. The man crumples to the ground.

For a second you and Chris stare at his limp body, then your eyes meet across the small room. The body of the guitar is hanging by the strings, and he’s just standing there holding it with a dazed look on his face. Then, after a few more seconds pass, he looks down at it and the corners of his mouth turn down into a mournful frown.

“Goddamnit, I loved this fucking guitar,” he blurts out.

Laughter bubbles up through all the fear, past the lump in your throat as all at once a swell of relief floods your senses. “Oh my god,” you say. “Oh my god, we… shit. Shit, we… Oh, god he’s bleeding, is he dead?”

Chris drops the broken remains of his guitar and closes the apartment door, flicking on the overhead light before nudging Jacobs’s side with his foot. You look at each other again and he shoves him harder to roll him onto his back. Raising the mace again, you inch closer as Chris inspects his face, then pries the gun from his hand and carefully sets it aside as though it might bite him.

“He’s breathing,” Chris says, sounding relieved as he takes a step back. You’re glad, for his sake, that he didn’t kill Jacobs. It only takes a second for him to start grinning, letting out a weak laugh. “Holy shit, did you see what I did? And you , Hope that was fucking metal! Oh, fuck— I mean— Sorry kid.” He cringes and you can’t help but laugh again.

“You were great,” you say, and that sudden rush of satisfaction is starting to wear off, leaving you jittery and worried. “We need to… to tie him up. Make sure he can’t do anything if he wakes up. Check his pockets, if he was planning on kidnapping us he might have… something. I don’t know.”

“Should we call the police? I mean, he broke in with a gun.” He starts rummaging through his pockets, gritting his teeth. “Oh, here we go.”

Chris pulls out some plastic zip-ties, and rolls the unconscious Jacobs over onto his face none too gently. Yanking his arms behind his back, he binds his hands together.

“I don’t know. I don’t even know who to trust with this, I wish I could talk to Sans…”

Sans has played his part. He got the Literatum through this alive, helped save the governor and his family, and now all he wants is to make sure you’re okay. Howard is talking to Governor Williams and Grant is dealing with Avery’s body. Rashid and Fatima are sitting on the floor out of the way with Vanessa, speaking quietly.

“So do you want to tell me what the hell happened back there?” Morwenna asks, crossing her arms as she comes to stand in front of Sans, arching a brow.

Deacon makes a low noise in the back of his throat, but doesn’t speak.

Sans feigns confusion. “back where?”

“You did something. I felt the strongest sense of deja vu, like we’d done part of that fight before. And there you were, countering Rashid like you knew he was there. And how did you know that Avery had a gun?” she presses, her expression growing more and more stern as she speaks.

“i’ve got good instincts,” he says carefully.

“Monster magic isn’t like ours,” Deacon says, cutting in. “They’re not limited by color, and they’ve got stuff we could only dream of. He just knew.”

Morwenna’s eyes shift from Sans, to Deacon, and then back again. He’s not sure she’s satisfied with that answer, but at the moment she doesn’t try to force it.

“what are you gonna do with the kids?” he asks, pointing over at the twins.

Her expression shifts into something sad as she glances behind her. “Take them with us. They’re only seventeen, they’ve still got their whole lives ahead of them, now that Avery’s gone.”

you need to take them in, not grant,” Sans says, and her attention snaps back to him, surprised.

He doesn’t look at Deacon, but he can feel his eyes on him.

Morwenna hesitates, pursing her lips and nodding. “No, I won’t make that mistake again,” she says quietly.

“good. now, i need to borrow your phone.” Sans hold out his hand.

“Excuse me?”

“i need to make sure my family is safe after this little stunt, now please let me borrow your phone,” he says, barely keeping the pleading tone out of his voice. None of this other shit matters right now. He just needs to hear your voice.

She studies him for a moment before reaching into her pocket and handing her phone to him. “You’ll have them back soon. From the looks of it, the governor is very grateful for our assistance. We’ll make sure he remembers that a monster helped save his family.”

“i only did it to save mine,” he mutters, but Morwenna smiles at him anyway as he keys in your number.

It takes four rings for you to pick up, and by that point Deacon is crowding him, an anxious look on his face. “Who the hell is this?” you snarl into the phone, startling him.

But the moment after his surprise fades he starts to laugh. “babe, it’s me. are you ok?”

“Oh my god, Sans,” you breathe, and your voice cracks when you say his name. He doesn’t say anything, just listens as you draw in a shuddering breath and the relief he feels makes his knees weak. You’re okay. You’re okay. “I’m fine, I— Hun are you okay? Jesus, I… I can’t… Are you okay?”

“i’m ok,” he says gently, rubbing his face with his free hand and then glancing over at Deacon. He’s smiling, running his hand through his hair and letting out a relieved sigh. “everybody’s ok. i’ll… i’ll tell you more as soon as i can, but things are fine. shit, you have no idea how happy i am to hear you, babe.”

“Jacobs is here,” you say, and that wipes the grin right off his face. “He’s tied up and he’s still unconscious, but he came here to kidnap us.”

“Chris broke his guitar hitting him in the head!” Frisk chimes in from the background, and Sans and Deacon look at each other again.

Well, at least he knows what got them to Load. In a weird way he supposes he owes Jacobs his life. “we’ll buy him a new one,” Sans says weakly.

“Was Jacobs alone?” Deacon asks, leaning in and speaking loud enough for the phone to pick him up.

“What about Jacobs?” Morwenna interjects, eyebrows shooting up.

“he tried to kidnap them. they stopped him,” Sans says.

“And he’s still there?”

He nods.

“I’ll go get Howard,” she says, and walks off.

“Yeah, he was alone,” you say. “Who was that in the background?”

He almost says her name, but catches himself just in case. “a friend. i’m sure you’ll get to meet her and the others soon. what have you done with jacobs?”

“We’re just… we’re just sitting here like we don’t have him tied up and locked up in the bathroom,” you admit, and your weak, near-hysterical laughter lets him know that you’re just as overwhelmed by all of this as he is. He really just wants to go home. “You gagged him, right?”

“Yeah.” That’s Chris’s voice, faint but Sans recognizes it. “The apartment on that side is empty, but yeah.”

“hope.”

“Sans?”

“i love you. this is almost over,” he says, closing his eyes and tipping his chin to his sternum.

“I love you, too. What should we do? I didn’t call the police, but maybe we should—”

“no, just hang tight.” There’s footsteps approaching, and when he reopens his eyes Howard is there.

“Morwenna just told me what’s going on. The governor isn’t going to be involving the police at all, they just need to, er, dispose of the body and clean the place up. They don’t need me here,” he says, and the corner of his mouth twitches up into a half-smile. “Want to go see your wife?”

Sans can’t help but laugh, grinning as Deacon claps a hand onto his shoulder. They exchange another look as Deacon chimes in, “I’m going too.”

“looks like i’m bringing the police to you, babe. i’ll see you soon.”

It’s the longest thirty minutes you’ve ever had to wait in your entire life. Knowing that Sans and Deacon are on their way, that this week (it feels like it’s been so much longer than just a week) is almost over, that hopefully by the end of the day you’ll be home… It gives you a surge of energy that leaves you pacing the tiny apartment despite Frisk’s teasing.

Frisk actually nods off on the couch with Chris after about fifteen minutes, worn out from what you can only imagine was a much worse night for them. What had happened before the Load you can’t remember, but to them they’d gone through it twice. Their cheek is smooshed up against Chris’s arm and he’s doing his best not to look too pleased with himself. He casts hesitant looks your way, like he’s worried he’s doing something wrong, but you just smile at him. He can have this, after everything he’s done for both of you.

After all, he might not be their dad, but he’s still something like family.

The knock on the door is soft but it’s still enough to make you jump, your nerves drawn tight and ready to snap. Still holding the mace in your hand, just in case, you go over to the door and glance through the peep-hole where you catch sight of familiar blonde hair. You can’t open the door fast enough.

“Sans,” you breathe, barely able to finish his name before his arms are around you, half-carrying you back into the apartment as he holds you almost painfully tight. You kiss him; on his mouth, his cheekbones, the side of his skull, tears springing to your eyes as you let out a sob of overwhelming relief. “You’re okay. Thank god you’re okay. I felt… I felt something wrong, like something happened to our Souls, and—”

“i’m okay, i’m right here,” he murmurs to you, nuzzling your cheek and nipping at your skin with his teeth. Kissing you back in the only way he can. He holds you close, breathing deep. “i’ve got you.”

“Dad!” Frisk cries out, happy and indignant in the same breath as you feel them jerk on the side of your shirt, trying to edge their way in.

You can’t help but laugh as you smile through your tears, keeping one arm around Sans’s shoulders as you pull away enough to let Frisk between you. He’s stroking their hair, hugging them close, and as they speak to each other you catch sight of Deacon. He’s standing by the door, patiently waiting his turn, and he gives you a lopsided grin as you meet his eyes.

“Come over here,” you demand, reaching out for him, splaying your fingers.

He ducks his head a little, somehow embarrassed even as he does as you ask. You grab his arm as soon as he’s close enough, pulling him to you embracing him as best you can while still holding onto Sans. Tucking your head under his chin, you shut your eyes.

“You said you’d do whatever you could to help me,” you say to him, clutching tightly to the back of his shirt. “And you did. Deacon, thank you so much.”

“It wasn’t…” He trails off, his protest fading as it passes his lips. He hugs you back, resting his cheek against the top of your head. “You’re welcome. This week was hell without you.”

You’re faintly aware of Howard talking to Chris, of the two of them heading back towards where you know the bathroom is, but right now you don’t care. You’ve got Sans and Deacon and they’re both here and safe, and you get the feeling they have a hell of a lot to tell you about what happened this past week.

But at least for the moment, it can all wait.

 
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