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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27. History

Sans takes Frisk to school on their first day because your period cramps are worse than yesterday and the idea of walking across Snowdin makes you want to cry. He tries to stay home with you again, but Papyrus won't have any of it. Undyne tells him you'll be fine with her watching out for you while the brothers are gone.

So you stay home curled up on the couch with a small stack of books you checked out from the library a few days ago. Undyne is at the other end of the couch, doing something on her phone and occasionally glancing up at the television. The silence between the two of you is companionable and undemanding.

Right as you start to open the first book sitting next to you ('History of the Underground') your phone chimes. You pick it up to find that Sans sent you a picture. You didn't even know that Sans's phone has a camera. Now that you realize it, you feel a little curious about all those times he had his phone out when you were around...

It's a picture of Frisk, grinning and waving in front of the school. It makes you smile and you're sure to save it. When you exit the image, you see Sans sent you a text right after. 'didnt want u 2 miss out. feel better.' Your smile softens, and you text back, 'Thank you, hun! It's a great picture! <3' Pausing for a second, you take another look at the thumbnail of the picture before setting the phone back down.

Burrowing down into the couch cushions to get more comfortable and resting your hand against your aching abdomen, you open the book in your lap. It makes for dry reading, but your own curiosity makes up for it. You want to learn about this place you've come to think of as your home.

You've always been a quick reader, and while the book itself is written plainly enough, you keep finding yourself distracted. Undyne flips channels on the television, and you get a few scattered texts from Sans. There's also the necessary trips to the bathroom that pull you up from the couch. By the time lunch rolls around, you've gotten about three quarters of the way through. You feel like you have a good handle on how the Underground came to be, as well as how Asgore moved the capital from the Ruins, originally called Home, and into New Home.

Wait, but if this is the same Asgore... and the Ruins were nearly decrepit. How can that be possible? Can monsters live for hundreds of years? You take another look at the book in your hands, flipping back to the front to try and find some kind of publishing information. But there isn't any date that you can find. The book looks fairly old.

"Need anything?" Undyne asks, interrupting your thoughts. She's uncurling herself from the couch, stretching up on her toes and raising her arms above her head with a loud, luxurious groan. Rolling her shoulders, she raises an eyebrow at you.

"Uh, no, I..." you trail off, frowning down at the book. You glance up at her, and she's watching you with a curious look. "Is the Asgore that led the monsters back when everyone was sent into the Underground the same one that's king now? Is that possible?"

"Yeah, one and the same," she says, crossing her arms over her chest. "Though he doesn't really like to talk about what it was like, before. When monsters still lived on the surface. Him and Gerson are the only people I think that still remember."

"But how? How long have monsters been down here?"

Undyne laughs, shaking her head and shrugging. "Do I look like a history nerd to you? I don't know, TOO LONG." Grimacing, she looks away, then back at you. "Asgore is a special type of monster. They're called Boss Monsters. The only way they age is if they have a kid. As the kid gets older, it makes their parents age too. But, Asgore's son died a long time ago."

Before you can react, she reaches down to scoop the book out of your hands, flipping through the section that you haven't read yet. Her expression hardens, then softens again, and she hands the book back. "Read the rest, if you want to know what happened." And with that, Undyne heads into the kitchen, leaving you alone.

And so, with a growing sense of sadness, you learn about what became of Asgore's son, Asriel. How the king's family took in a human child (the child's name is never mentioned, neither is the name of his wife) who fell just like you and Frisk did. The writing is dry and emotionless, but you can gather enough to think that the monster family must have cared about that human very much. Enough to consider them their own child. For a time it seemed that the hope of all the monsters rested on the idea that this single human might help bridge the gap between their two peoples. And then they got sick, and died. Asriel took that human's Soul to try and fulfill their would-be sibling's last wish, and was struck down. And the Dreemurrs were left without either of their children.

You blame the tightness in your throat and the tears in your eyes on hormones. But you snatch up your phone and take another look at that picture of Frisk anyway, to make yourself feel better. You can't imagine what it must be like to lose a child, let alone two. You don't want to ever know what that pain is like.

Undyne never left the kitchen the entire time you were reading, and now that you're done you wonder what she's doing. You also have questions you're hoping she can answer. As you get up from the couch you bite back a groan as a cramp tightens in your abdomen. This is why you're staying home, especially without any painkillers to help.

As you approach the kitchen, you hear Undyne talking in a low voice. "Okay Undyne, just be cool," she says, and you think she's talking to herself. But why? You tuck yourself against the wall next to the television, afraid of interrupting her. "Just talk to her. She likes talking to you."

Who is she talking about? For a split second you think she might mean you but that doesn't make any sense. As far as you know, she's never had any problems talking to you. And right now Undyne sounds downright nervous. Who could possibly inspire that kind of anxiety in someone as unflappable as her?

"Just... ask her about something nerdy. She likes that shit. Okay, okay, just call her!" Undyne snaps at herself, and you can hear her give a low growl.

Maybe you shouldn't be listening to this. But now you're afraid to move and give yourself away.

"H-hey Alphys! It's me, Undyne!" she says, and you can hear her pacing across the tile floor. "I mean, of course you know it's me, I'm sure my name came up on your phone. ANYWAY, how's the, uh, weather in Hotland today?" There's a pause. "Hot? Yeah, I thought so! I needed to know for, er, Royal Guard reasons!"

Is she serious right now? The embarrassment just from proximity is almost more than you can bear. You cover half of your face with one hand, grimacing.

"Yeah, I'm doing just fine! We're probably half-done with the house, I really need to stop setting it on fire, huh?!" Undyne lets out a loud bark of laughter, and it sounds like she's finally starting to relax a little.

Also, how many times has she burned down her house?

"Yeah! You should TOTALLY come visit sometime! I know that Papyrus would love to see you, and you can finally meet Sans properly. You should stop buying those terrible hot dogs from his stand, Alphys." Her voice quiets a little. "And I always like seeing you. OH, and you can meet Sans's girlfriend, too! She's pretty cool, I think you'd like her. So's her kid. Yeah, a kid, crazy right?"

You flush a bit at the compliment, coming from Undyne you know it's genuine. You're also feeling even more guilty for snooping. Biting your lip, you step away from the wall and give an exaggerated sigh, stretching and pretending like you're just now approaching the kitchen. Undyne turns on her heel, looking a bit like a deer stuck in the headlights as she catches sight of you.

"OKAY ALPHYS, I have to go, so just tell me later when you want to come over. BYE." She jerks the phone away from her ear, pressing a button and shoving it into the pocket of her jeans. "HEY PUNK, uh, was there something you needed?"

"I finished the book," you tell her, opting to pretend you didn't hear any of her conversation. Thinking back on what you just read, it sobers your thoughts, and you feel a small frown tugging on your mouth.

You see the tension leave Undyne's body. She looks away, and you swear she looks a little sad. Crossing her arms over her chest, she rubs her fingers over her elbow absently. "So then you know exactly how much humans took from us. What they took from Asgore."

"I can't blame him for wanting revenge on the humans who killed his son," you say, your hand drifting to cover your chest.

Undyne's head jerks to face you, a hard look settling over her face. Her eye flicks down at your hand. "Who said anything about revenge? He just wants to see everyone happy, the big softy. He's collecting Souls to try and free us, not because he's angry."

Guilt twists in your stomach and you pick at the front of your shirt. "And I really am standing in your way. If you had—"

"HEY," Undyne snaps at you, and you're surprised to see her glaring. "Don't start that shit now. You're a friend, and this just means we have to wait a little bit longer."

"But—"

Undyne takes a step forward, jabbing a sharp-nailed finger in your face. You lean backwards, eyes widening in surprise. "No buts. Never feel bad for protecting yourself and Frisk. You're just as important as any of the other monsters down here."

Your face scrunches and you can't quite meet her gaze. "How did he get the other six Souls? Did you...?"

She pulls her arm back over her chest, cupping her elbows. A frown furrows her brow. "Did I kill anyone?" She pauses and you nod, feeling bad for even asking. "No. You two are the first humans I've ever seen. And, he doesn't like talking about the Souls. He's doing his best to try and free us from this prison, but that doesn't mean he likes that people have to die. Even though humans did this to us in the first place." Undyne grimaces, then relaxes with a sigh. "I'd rather step up and make sure he doesn't have to do any of that again. So the next human that falls down here better be a jerk, so I don't feel bad about killing them!"

You try not to dwell on the idea of Undyne trying to kill anyone else, even if it's for an arguably good cause. "You and Asgore are close? So then... are you lying to him about Frisk and I?"

She looks away, and you think you see a flicker of guilt cross her face. "Look, I know him well enough to get that he doesn't really want to fight anybody. I'm doing him a favor by keeping you punks a secret, got that?"

"Thanks," you tell her, smiling.

"Whatever," she grumbles. "Since we're playing twenty questions apparently, is there anything else you wanted to know?"

Your thoughts to back to Asriel. His story in particular struck a cord in your heart. "How long ago did Asriel and that human child die?"

Undyne gives you an odd look, like she's surprised at your question. "I don't know exactly. I don't really make a point of asking about sad stuff. He's only ever mentioned Asriel to me once, and it was on accident."

"What did he say? If... if you don't mind me asking."

Looking up at the ceiling, Undyne hesitates. After a moment you think she decides not to answer, but she does. "He told me that he wished that I'd been around back then to keep Asriel safe. That I would have made a better protector, instead of hunting down humans. I dunno about that last part, but I know I would have stopped Asriel! I would do anything to help Asgore and his family."

You're startled by the passion in Undyne's voice. She catches herself, clearing her throat and glancing at you. "But it's just him now. He doesn't need me to protect him, because he's tough! Tougher than me!" She shrugs her shoulders, turning away and heading to the fridge. "I think you'd like him, but for your sake and his, I hope you never meet."

   
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