The Moon in the Dark

Long ago, the Monsters and Humans fought a great war. The Monsters lost, and were sealed in the Underground. It would take the power of seven human souls to break the barrier that kept them imprisoned. They only had six. And so the Monsters waited and hoped, praying that another human would find their way to the Underground. Some thought the seventh soul would give their King the strength to break the barrier. Some dreamed of a human who would be their friend, and save them all...or had nightmares of one who would bring back the war.
...but nobody came.
...but somepony did.
Eons after the war, with no way to tell how much time had passed above, a tiny blue filly with wings and horn fell into the underground, calling for her Mama. None knew the poor creature's nature or origins...but her soul was powerful with magic, even more so than a human soul.
None can know what will come...of this little 'Woona'.
http://www.fimfiction.net/story/303673/the-moon-in-the-dark

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58. The Believer

Papyrus swallowed to himself as he glanced from the pale green soul with its pink glow to the green faceless sage, having bulked up to tower over him with thick muscles and massive stores of energy that floated around it in preparation for the battle to come.  As Papyrus stared up, he swallowed convulsively.  "I...I DON'T KNOW IF I CAN DO THIS," he confessed to the human soul.  "I MEAN...I KNOW EVERYONE'S COUNTING ON ME...BUT I COULDN'T EVEN CAPTURE A HUMAN!  OR MAKE IT INTO THE ROYAL GUARD!  OR EVEN MAKE MY LAZY BROTHER PICK UP HIS SOCKS!  SANS DOESN'T EVEN WEAR SOCKS, SO WHY DOES HE HAVE SO MANY?"  He sighed, knowing he was babbling...even if the pink-glowing green soul seemed content to listen, and the Sage Soul was in no rush to engage him in battle.  "IT'S JUST NO USE," Papyrus sighed.  "DESPITE ALL MY BLUSTER...THE GREAT PAPYRUS IS JUST A GREAT...FAILURE."

No...you're not...Papy... a soft voice reached him from within his heart.

Papyrus perked up as he heard that voice.  "WOONA?" he gasped out.  "IS...IS THAT YOU?"

I made it this far...because of you, Woona told him gently.  Because you...are my friend...and you believed in me.  You...believe in me still, don't you?

"OF COURSE I DO, WOONA!" Papyrus proclaimed eagerly.  "YOU'VE DONE SO MUCH FOR ALL OF US!  I COULD NEVER NOT BELIEVE IN YOU!"  He glanced down sadly.  "IT'S JUST...IT'S A LITTLE HARDER TO BELIEVE IN MYSELF..."

I...believe in you, Woona responded.  And because you believed in me...I was able to...believe in myself.  If you can't believe in yourself...then do what I did...and believe in the me that believes in you...  The green soul bobbed up and down before Papyrus as though agreeing with what Woona was telling him.

Papyrus raised his gaze at those words.  "...YOU'RE RIGHT!" he finally proclaimed.  "AS LONG AS YOU BELIEVE IN ME...I CAN DO ANYTHING!  I HAVE NOTHING TO BE AFRAID OF!  I STOOD UP TO UNDYNE FOR YOU!  I'D HAVE STOOD UP TO ASGORE FOR YOU!  AND I CAN CERTAINLY PUT THIS FACELESS SHADE OF A FORGOTTEN AGE IN ITS PLACE FOR YOU!  THE AGE OF HUMANS IS OVER!  NOW IS THE TIME FOR MONSTERS TO SHOW PONIES WHAT WE ARE MADE OF!  THIS FEAR BEAST SHALL KNOW THE DESTRUCTIVE POWER OF MY KINDNESS!"  As he spoke, the green soul flew into him, and his spiritual body blazed with light.  "FOR I AM FILLED WITH DETERMINATION!"

The bones of Papyrus body all began to sparkle brilliantly as the Determination he was made of began to catalyze, and the garb of his battle body burst off into a storm of red geranium petals that swirled around him.  He arched his back as the magic took shape around him, giving him a battle body fitting to the power he had unleashed.  His legs soon became wrapped in black leather, steel-toed boots covering his feet with a sparkle of light.  The same black leather covered his upper torso, open in the front.  A red trenchcoat buttoned itself around his neck and over his left arm, even as his right arm was encased in black leather ending in a flexible glove.  Reaching into the open trenchcoat that blew behind him, he detached his rib cage and spun it, sending the glowing bones flying off into the air.  Holding his sternum, he lifted it vertically as his ribs flew back, the inside of each curve affixing to the point from smallest to largest until a flash of light completed its transformation into a long bone sword.  A skull decorated gun appeared in a holster on his left hip.  Lifting his gloved left hand, he dragged it across his eyes as sharply pointed orange shades appeared, angling off to the sides of his head with their points, the eyes behind them glowing orange and green.  Yellow and blue hair sprouted from the top of his skull, standing upright like the bristles of a broom.

Bracing the sword on his shoulder, he held his left hand forward, the index and middle finger raised and crossed.

 

Papyrus Believes

 

Lowering his hand as the flower petals faded into the infinite black, Papyrus stared up at his foe.  N o w  t h e n , he stated firmly, his serious voice cutting through the void, s h o w  m e  w h a t  y o u  a r e  m a d e  o f .

Roaring, the Sage lunged in, delivering a seemingly endless barrage of punches, desperately trying to smash Papyrus into oblivion.  Each punch had the force of a meteorite impact, and if there had been air in their battleground, the shock waves alone would have smashed mountains to rubble.

When the barrage ended, the word 'Miss' popped up over Papyrus' head in white text.

Papyrus stared at his foe stunned, no longer able to take things completely seriously.  "WOW.  THAT'S...THAT'S JUST SAD.  YOU'RE REALLY HAVING THAT MUCH TROUBLE HITTING ME?  WELL, THEN AGAIN, WE ARE FIGHTING IN AN INFINITE VOID.  WITH THAT MUCH ROOM TO DODGE, YOUR HIT RATE MUST BE TERRIBLE.  WHY DON'T I FIX THAT?"  Grinning, Papyrus took hold of his blade with both hands and swung it.

Once.

Twice.

Thrice.

And again.

With each strike, the void they were battling in divided, the slash splitting the very fabric of reality and trapping the pair of combatants in a well defined box.  Six sides containing a vast but no longer infinite space for the pair to battle it out in.

"THERE WE GO!" Papyrus proclaimed proudly.  "WELP, THAT'S MY TURN!  NOW TO MAKE THIS QUICK AND FAIR, I'M NOT GOING TO DODGE!  AND...THERE!"  A beeping sound echoed.  "I'VE SET MY DODGE RATING TO NEGATIVE 12!  IT IS NOW PHYSICALLY IMPOSSIBLE FOR YOU TO MISS ME AGAIN.  SO...I WANT YOU TO - AND THIS IS IMPORTANT - HIT ME AS HARD AS YOU CAN!"  He noticed the Sage looking at him in confusion, and chuckled.  "SERIOUSLY, AS HARD AS YOU CAN.  I WANT TO SETTLE THIS QUICKLY.  I KNOW YOU OBVIOUSLY WANT TO FOCUS YOUR ENERGIES ON HELPING THE OTHER SAGES KEEP THE BARRIER INTACT, AND I'D RATHER LET THE NICE YELLOW FLOWER - WHO I THINK MIGHT BE THE DEAD PRINCE SOMEHOW, IMAGINE THAT?! - FOCUS HIS ATTENTION ON HELPING WOONA AND LETTING THE OTHERS FIGHT THEIR BATTLES!  SO NO MATTER WHO WINS HERE, WE'D BOTH LIKE THIS FINISHED QUICKLY...SO LET'S JUST GO ALL OUT...AND HIT ME...AS HARD AS YOU-"

The Sage gathered all the power floating around it and launched it in a massive blast that seemed to consume everything in its path, slamming into Papyrus and blasting past him, blowing open the opposite end of the confined box from the sheer power being unleashed.  The Sage flexed, ready to move on...only to stare.

Papyrus stood there, not a scratch or scuff anywhere on him or his Super Battle Body, and a crimson '1' floated over his head before fading.  "EXCELLENT!" Papyrus praised, checking his stats.  "ONLY 999,999,999,999,998 OF THOSE TO GO-"  He stopped as the crimson '1' faded to be replaced by a green '10'.  "...OH.  I GUESS YOU'LL HAVE TO HIT A LOT HARDER THAN THAT IF I'M REGENERATING EVERY TURN!  I DID NOT KNOW I COULD DO THAT!  STILL, MY TURN!"  Hefting his sword in both hands, he swept it down vertically.

The Sage dodged to the side of the slash, having seen what that did to reality...and let out a soundless scream of agony as its arm was cut off, destroyed from the strike and regeneration properties neutralized, a quarter of the Sage's Soul sheared off in the process of the strike.

"WOWIE ZOWIE!" Papyrus proclaimed, stunned as he shifted his sword back to his shoulder.  "I'M LIKE SOME SORT OF ACTION STAR SUPER HERO!  LIKE THAT GUY IN THE CAPE, EXCEPT WITH A SWORD AND GUN INSTEAD OF BOXING GLOVES!"  He paused in his marveling to look up at the Sage.  "OH, UH, SORRY ABOUT YOUR ARM!  YOU CAN STILL TAKE YOUR TURN, RIGHT?"

The Sage, for its part, sank to its knees and held its single arm out imploringly.

 

The Sage is Sparing you.

 

"...WELL, THIS IS A CONUNDRUM," Papyrus admitted.  "I REALLY WANT TO SPARE YOU, I REALLY DO...BUT I ALSO WANT TO SPARE WOONA, AND AS LONG AS YOU EXIST, YOU WILL CONTINUE TO ACTIVELY TRY AND KILL WOONA.  SO...I GUESS THIS IS A QUESTION OF WHO DO I WANT TO SPARE MORE...AND THAT'S NOT EVEN A QUESTION."  Sighing, he drew the skull surmounted gun, pointing it straight at the Sage as the gun fused with his arm, expanding his body out behind him into a massive cannon with white angel and black devil wings, the skull of the Gaster Blaster at the front, mouth open and charging the energy even as the Sage scrambled to get away.  "I HOPE YOUR NEXT TIME AROUND, I CAN SPARE YOU!  I'M SURE IF THE SITUATION WERE DIFFERENT, AND YOU WEREN'T TRYING TO KILL LITTLE WOONA WHILE KEEPING ALL OF US LOCKED ETERNALLY IN THE UNDERGROUND, WE COULD BE FRIENDS!  BUT SINCE YOU ARE, I GUESS WE CAN'T."

The energy erupted, incinerating the Sage and tearing into its Soul, shattering it into dust.

"...I WISH I HADN'T HAD TO DO THAT..." Papyrus sighed as he let his power drop back to more reasonable levels to make the strain of sustaining his manifestation easier on Flowey.  As he did so, the hair that had stood straight up until then hung down around his skull.  Noticing it for the first time, he reached up and held a few strands between his fingers.  Tugging on it, he discovered it was attached...and he gasped in surprised amazement.  "I HAVE HAIR!  I HAVE TO SING!"

But the chapter ended before he could begin.

"NYEH?"

 
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