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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15. Heart to Heart

You're drinking tomato soup out of a mug, fingers a little oily from the grilled cheese sandwiches you already demolished. Frisk insisted on cooking dinner in your stead (thank goodness, because you don't think you can handle Papyrus's spaghetti right now) and grilled cheese is one of the few things they know. The edges were a little burnt, but even you still make that mistake sometimes. Sans is right about the food. The warm, creamy soup goes straight to your Soul, easing away the pain.

Sans watches you as you eat, and it seems like the tension in his face eases away as you feel better. Even Papyrus stops casting you worried glances. Can they feel the difference? Do monsters have some kind of sense about these things?

The four of you are piled on the couch. Your legs are in Sans's lap, back against the tall armrest. Frisk is sitting on your feet, and they giggle as you wiggle your toes against their thigh. They push on your shins and give you an attempt at a glare, ruined by their toothy grin. Papyrus is on Frisk's other side, enraptured with the television.

Sans must have already talked to Papyrus about what was going on, because when Frisk calls you 'Mom' in front of him he does an admirable job of acting like there's nothing out of the ordinary. When it happens, you glance at Sans and he just gives you a wink.

You drain the mug and lick soup off your top lip. You can't help but notice Sans's white pupils following the path of your tongue. As your mouth curls into a smile, his gaze flicks up to your eyes and his default grin warms as he looks at you.

"feel better?" he asks, taking the empty mug from your hands.

"Much. You were right," you say.

"that happens on occasion." Sans nudges Frisk in the shoulder with the mug, holding it over their lap. "hey kiddo can you go put this in the sink? i'm a little occupied."

Frisk giggles. "It's not a cup it's a mug," they protest, but take it and rock forward to slide off the couch.

"my mugstake."

"SANS." Papyrus warns, casting his brother a sidelong look.

Frisk's laughs follow them as they run off to the kitchen.

"Hey, no running in the house!" you catch yourself calling after them. You blink, then can't help but chuckle.

"uh oh, sounds like someone is turning into a momster."

Laughing, the two of you glance over at Papyrus in expectation. Instead of annoyance, you see contemplation settling over his features. Oh, this is something you've only seen twice in the week or so you've been staying with the brothers. Is he... going to make a pun?

A confident grin erupts across Papyrus's face. "NO, SANS. SHE IS MORE OF A HUMOM."

Dissolving into a fit of giggles, you cover your mouth with one hand as the other grabs a hold of Sans's shoulder. Sans is positively beaming, making a show of rubbing the corner of one eye socket.

"that was beautiful, bro," he says, throwing his arm around Papyrus's shoulders and pulling him into a sideways hug.

Papyrus's cheekbones redden slightly, a pleased smile on his face. After a moment, he seems to remember himself, pushing Sans away. "OF COURSE IT WAS, SANS. I, THE GREAT PAPYRUS, CAN ALSO APPRECIATE A GOOD PUN. OCCASIONALLY." He gives his brother a stern look. "DO NOT THINK THIS IS PERMISSION FOR MORE PUNS."

Before Sans can speak (you're certain he was about to get himself screeched at by Papyrus by telling another joke) Frisk rushes back into the room. They beeline for Papyrus, grinning and trying to pull him to his feet. "Papyrus! Let's go play some more. You said we would play after dinner!"

"OF COURSE, TINY HUMAN! PREPARE TO BE DEFEATED BY MY SUPERIOR ACTION FIGURE STRATEGIES! NYEH HEH HEH!"

You and Sans watch the two of them run upstairs (you don't even bother trying to scold Frisk again) and disappear into Papyrus's room. You feel a little exhausted just watching them.

"I can't remember ever having that much energy," you mutter.

"i'm pretty sure papyrus has the energy of at least two monsters. it's probably where mine went." Sans winks at you when you look at him. "he got the height and the energy. i got the charm and devastatingly good looks."

With one less child in the room to traumatize, and one less brother to embarrass, you lean forward to brush a kiss to Sans's mouth. You stay like that for a moment, resting a hand against his chest before pulling back and giving him a crooked smile. "Is that why you're so short? You're weighed down by all those puns and your winning personality?"

A blue tinge paints his cheekbones, but he still manages to give you a sly grin. "hey, now. don't start belittling me."

You laugh, a soft snort breaking free. After a moment, the sound dies out in the air between you as you notice his expression sobering. It's not at all the reaction you're expecting. Searching his face, even the pinpricks of light in his eyes seem to dim.

"What's wrong?" you ask him, softly.

"sorry, i didn't mean to ruin the mood. i just..." Sans shakes his head, then wraps his arms around your middle and pulls you closer. "today was... that was a lot closer than i'm really comfortable with. we're lucky that frisk thought to call papyrus or we..." He pauses, letting his head fall back against the couch. "shit, forget it. you're fine, we're fine... i'm sure undyne will get over it eventually. papyrus can be pretty stubborn, i'm sure he'll annoy her into being friends again."

"I'm sorry for scaring you," you say, because you're not sure what else to do.

"you apologize too much. it's not your fault."

"Sorry," you say, unable to catch yourself. A weak laugh escapes you as Sans gives you a look. "But... are you okay?"

Sans seems to consider your question. His arms relax around you, letting you settle back against the armrest again. One hand lingers at the small of your back and the other rests on your leg, soon covered by your own. You thread your fingers between the slender bones, giving him a reassuring squeeze. "a little rattled i guess you could say. but you're here with me, and that's the best i can hope for." His expression shifts into a worried frown. "but what about you? are you okay?"

"Oddly enough, yeah. I mean, Undyne scared the crap out of me, but somehow it kind of felt like it was a long time coming." Sans gives you a confused look and you shake your head. "I mean, protecting Frisk. It... almost felt like I was standing up to my mother. Ah, that just sounds stupid. It's just that, ever since we got to the Underground, it's felt like I've just been following Frisk's lead. Like they've got everything under control and I have no clue. In the moment, with Undyne, I was terrified, but I knew what I had to do. Looking back on it... it felt... good. To be able to protect them."

Sans nods but doesn't say anything. Comfortable silence settles between you, punctuated only by the muffled sounds of Papyrus's voice upstairs. Fingers gently stroke side to side across the small of your back. He hasn't said anything about your Soul. You try to think of a way to ease yourself into the question, but nothing comes to mind. Reaching up to rest your hand on your chest, you sigh.

"Sans, what's wrong with my Soul?"

He doesn't immediately react. Apparently he was expecting this, judging by the lack of surprise. His gaze falls to the hand over your chest and lingers there. After almost a minute of silence, just as you're starting to get worried, he finally speaks. "you gave me sort of the general idea of what your life was like. now, i'm not stupid, i can sort of fill in the gaps you left. i didn't expect you to give me all the gritty details the day we met, y'know? but that kind of life..." His eyes flick up to yours, and something in your chest aches at the sad look he gives you. "it leaves marks. someone who was supposed to love you and take care of you hurt you instead. over and over, until the cracks started to form. i... ah, shit, babe i'm sorry, please don't..."

The ache is Soul-deep as tears spill silently down your cheeks. You shake your head as Sans tries to comfort you, mouth curving into a humorless smile. "I knew it. As soon as I saw my Soul, I knew that it was all her fault. She ruined me."

"no, you're not ruined. don't you ever think that," he says, squeezing your hand holding your gaze. "the cracks in your soul don't define you. you're wounded, and maybe those cracks will never completely heal, but that doesn't mean that you're ruined."

Drawing in a shaky breath, you reach up with the hand that was on your chest to wipe away your tears. You feel a little sick of crying. "I'm just glad I took Frisk away before she could do this to them too." You smile again; it's weak, but genuine. "Their Soul is so much brighter and clearer than mine. I hope it stays that way."

"me too," he says, a weight to his words you can feel as if it were a tangible thing. San's draws his hand away from your back, and holds it tentatively over your chest. He never breaks eye contact. "do you trust me?"

You nod. "Of course I do."

Sans untangles his fingers from yours, and holds both of his hands over your chest. You lower your hands to your lap, realizing what he's doing and afraid to get in the way. A strange warmth spreads inside of you, a little fuzzy feeling but not unpleasant. His fingers twitch, and your Soul rises and lifts away from your body, a dark red glow lighting the space between you. It's just how you remember it, heart-shaped with cracks running through the middle. The gap between the top two curves of the heart is wider than it should be, like it started to rip in half. You reach up to touch it and Sans doesn't stop you. Your fingers pass right through, like it's an illusion.

"Wait, what?" you say, startled. "But..."

Sans pulls your hand away, settling it back in your lap. He's careful not to touch your Soul. "only magic can touch it, sorry. it's how monsters can draw it out in the first place."

"Oh."

"your soul is the only part of you that contains some magic. us monsters, our whole bodies are made of it. you humans, you're made up of a lot more stuff. a long time ago there were humans that could tap into their souls, i dunno if there's any that still can." Sans shakes his head. "that's not the point. what i'm trying to say is that magic calls to magic. i can feel your soul even when you can't see it. i told you before that frisk's soul is stronger than yours, and that's still true. but you're not weak. you held your own against undyne longer than a lot of monsters ever could."

You're shaking your head. Sans is giving you too much credit. "But that's only because of that weird magical barrier she gave me—"

"your soul made that shield, to protect you. she used her magic on your soul and it reacted."

You blink. "That... makes a lot more sense than Undyne making things harder on herself."

Sans chuckles. "yeah." His attention is on your Soul, his fingers cupping the air around it like he's holding something delicate and precious. You suppose, in a way, he is. With your legs over him, you can feel a shudder run through his bones. "you can't really know how this feels, i can't even describe it." He sounds reverent, and his voice makes something inside you ache.

"Try," you say, whispering without thinking.

He looks up to your face and there's something hungry in his eyes, affection and lust and fear somehow all wrapped up together. "it makes my bones hum. your soul is everything about you, concentrated into this little ball of magic. it's... wonderful and painful at the same time, overwhelming but i can't get enough. the closer i get..." Sans's fingers inch closer, then he trembles and drops his hands away. Sweat is dotting the side of his skull and he releases a shaky sigh. "shit. sorry it's just... pretty intense. human souls are something else."

With Sans losing his focus on your Soul, it sinks back down into your chest and that strange fuzzy feeling goes away. You feel more solid, somehow. The intimacy of what just happened strikes you hard, a flush spreading rapidly over your cheeks. As you watch, it takes a moment for Sans to collect himself.

"you're not ruined," he says, voice canted low as he reaches out to cup your cheek. "i hope that, ah, little demonstration helped you see exactly what your soul is capable of doing. at least... to me."

You sit up and turn, pulling one leg over his lap so that you're straddling him. Sans's eyes widen in surprise as you arch your back so you can bend forward to press a series of light kisses along his mouth. As you trail along his jaw, you feel his hands find your hips, then tease under the hem of your shirt, along the waist of your jeans. You can hear him release a shaky breath next to your ear.

"you should be resting," he protests weakly, his phalanges trailing higher to find more skin. The hypocrite.

"I'm fine," your murmur against his neck. He shivers. "The food helped, just like you said it would."

"frisk could come down any second."

That makes you pause. With a heavy sigh you pull back, giving Sans an exasperated look. "This is just getting frustrating."

"so eager to jump my bones?" he asks, a blue blush tinting his cheekbones. "your own skeleton inside you getting lonely?"

You make a face. "That's just creepy, Sans."

He laughs. You can feel the sound through your body as you sit on him. Giving your hips a squeeze that makes you bite back an embarrassingly pleased sound, he waggles his brows at you. "i'll talk to papyrus tomorrow. see what i can do about getting us some time alone."

 
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