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Fallen

Chapter Text

There are two types of people in this world, you decided. Those who belong, and those who don't.

Run for cover

Those who belong achieve great things. They build massive monuments and create vast nations, conquer entire empires. They're doctors. Preachers. Leaders. They aspire to greatness, brushing off doubt as if it were merely lint on their clothes. They belong.

My sense of fear is running thin

And those who don't belong?

Undercover

You stand overlooking the entrance to the Underground, feeling uncertain as you stare into the vertical cave of sorts with its magical barrier gleaming against the dark void of the opening. You shudder in the coldness of the early morning, tugging your hoodie closer. You needed to get this over and done with.

Just like a candle in the wind

You didn't deserve to live after what you'd done.

Tell everybody, tell everybody

You wonder if you should have left a note. Was there some sort of suicide etiquette people followed? A how-to manual called How to Kill Yourself 101? Death for Dummies? Sorry I Couldn't Make It, I Committed Suicide?

Brothers, sisters

You stare into your soon-to-be-grave. It was dark, quiet, and cold, and very much like the woods surrounding it. Mt. Ebott's woods had always been intriguing in the most dangerous of ways. 

The ending is coming

There was a certain peacefulness to the darkness, you thought. To death. In a daze, you take a step forward.

Oh, we are Fallen

The wind picks up just as you step off, knocking you flat on your ass. 

We are Fallen

Your eyes snap open as you gasp for air. Sunlight caresses your cheek as you lay there, panting. For a quiet, drawn-out moment, everything is still. 

Oh, we are Fallen

Your gaze shoots upwards.

We are Fallen

The sight before you takes your breath away.

Now...

Streaks of magenta and tangerine bleed into one another, casting a warm, orange hue onto the lush greenery around you. Warmth had replaced the bitter cold of the early morning, filling the hollowness that had seeped into every crevice of the dark forest. You felt like yourself for once. And, for the first time in a long time, you felt at peace.

Just like clockwork, the cogs of your thoughts click into place.

No.

Your eyes widen at the bloodorange sky.

Not again.

You've seen this before.

Not now!

And just like that, you're in the middle of a thunderstorm.

The rain was blinding. It shot down like bullets as you stagger backwards onto the rainslick grass. You were soaked to the bone in seconds, panting, gasping. You hear screaming, but you don't know if it's the wind or yourself. The clouds overhead block out the beautiful sunrise, replacing it with dark shadows that creep into your subconscious. Thunder rumbles and lightning flashes, dancing in the sky as the clouds swarm above you, swirling, suffocating. You feel yourself being lifted off the ground by the howling wind, past and future morphing into one as you're hit with a vision. 

You land against the forest floor with a thud.

Your eyes flutter open, revealing the woods where you had just been. No storm, no rain, no angry wind. Just birds chirping happily in the brilliant sunrise. You try your limbs, fingers, neck, and your ribs. Nothing broken. Just bruised as all hell.

And, more importantly, you were now in control of your body.

Your gaze darts to the Underground barrier. It had been newly shattered, the remnants of the barrier swirling around you in the breeze, illuminated by the sunrise painted above you. And you weren't the only one who noticed. People in strange clothes were gathered around you, watching the sunrise in pure awe. 

You feel a hand on your shoulder as you're swept into another vision.

It was when you found it. You were just a child when you had stumbled across it in the west wing of your father's mansion, hidden behind a panel in the wall. It was an leather-bound journal with entries dating back to God knows when with a weirdass rune on the cover.

You expected to find elegant cursive inside, maybe juicy secrets. Poetry, lyrics, hymms. Hell, even declarations of love. Instead, you found–

Nothing. The pages were completely blank. You flipped to the front, the middle, the back.

There. Sandwiched between the last page and the back cover was a tear in the spine. Your fingers ran over the torn paper. A missing page.

You flipped to the cover, tracing the brand softly. It was a rune. The upper half a circle with wings on either side, the bottom half being three triangles, the bottom one inverted. It was ancient and rare prophetic rune Monsters believed to fortell a mighty hero who is said to awaken in the midst of darkness to guide Monsters.

And right in the palm of your hands.

"The Delta Rune," past-you whispered. 

Present-you visibly cringed. You held a hand over your chest, clutching the fabric between you and your scar, the scarred skin lighting up at your touch.

You hated this part. 

At your words the book flew open, the vibrations massaging your palms, shaking you to your core. The ancient text burned blue as it levitated off the page, weird symbols morphing into English as it translated. One by one they circled your form on the floor.

"In the darkest of times, light prevails yet again. Our hope for a better world will not falter. I will not falter." 

The whispers were soft, earnest. Kind. Like someone you knew. But the words were not.

"I've conquered entire nations with the snap of my fingers"

You chuckled nervously. It had to be a joke.

"They must die."

Okay, you thought. Not a joke.

"A path that is not mine to take. A place where I am not meant to go. I do  this out of love."

You felt it all around you, burning with the intensity of a thousand suns.

"I do this for you."

The all-to familiar characters that circled you swirled faster in the oppressive heat, burning brighter and brighter as they chanted. It was like you had been thrown in Hell's own special oven.

"I need to make a better world. A world in which they are no more. They must be destroyed." 

The whispers were harsher now, more insistent as you were lifted from the ground. Like in the storm earlier, you noticed, but now hot and claustrophobic as hell. You heard nothing but the chanting. Not the banging of the door, nor the doorknob jiggling. Not even your own screaming.

"Disgusting." 

It wasn't her voice anymore. It was like every person in the world was chanting in unison into your mind. It was hard to think. Hard to do anything but clutch your head in agony.

"Repulsive."

It was hard to breathe.

"No more."

And just like that, the winds stopped. Your small body hit the ground just as the lights flashed, flickered, and died. Now the only light came from the hovering text. Your breathing was rough and uneven as you lay there, limp and clutching the book to your chest, ignoring the searing pain that it brought. You felt someone's arms around you, their murmures soothing.

Rey gently brushed the tears from your cheeks with her calloused, warm hands as she cupped your face, staring into your half-lidded eyes. She was crying. "–is dangerous, Mija. Do you hear me? The Delta Rune is never to be messed with. What were you thinking?"

Ms. Reyes. Your nanny who always let you stay over when your father was away because her home didn't feel empty. The woman who was more involved in your life than your own father, listened intently when you ranted about art because the kids in your class said it was stupid. No, Michaelangelo is not overrated. When you cried and said you liked girls the same way you liked boys.

Who had been there for you when your mother died.

The closest thing you had to a emotionally supportive parental figure; your nanny, who cared you like you were her own, knew about the Delta Rune. Your heart leapt into your throat as you struggled to find your voice.

Thump–thump, thump–thump.

"How–" The world spun as you tried to sit up. "How do you..."

Thump–thump.

Her pleas for you to stay awake blended with the hissing, fading chants of the rune burned into your chest as you succumbed to the darkness.

"Stay awake, baby. Stay awake."

Thump–thump... 

A clear, distinct voice. "Beware the man who speaks in hands."

Thump...

"Delta!"

And suddenly you were back, and more than a little emotionally fucked up. Shit. Shit. You couldn't lose your cool, not yet. 

The woods. A hand on your shoulder, tentative, shy.

Their eyes flit to yours, and your breath catches in your throat. Caramel skin. Watchful brown eyes. Jet black hair. Striped sweater. Well, shit.

Speak of the devil.

Their head was tilted, their eyes studying you for signs of danger. When they find none, they smile warmly, and your heart stops. How they managed to look like a model with mud caked on them was astounding.

You forcefully swallow, needing a moment to compose yourself. You didn't deserve their smile.

"I'm sorry." You step back. Frowning, Frisk takes a step closer and reaches for you.

There's a feeling of weightlessness, a flash of light, and then everything goes dark. When you open your eyes, everyone around you is gone, leaving you alone in the lush forest clearing. 

You let out a breath you didn't know you'd been holding, watching, still, as the white puffs disappear in the gentle breeze. In the distance, you think you hear sirens, though you're too busy having a panic attack to care.

Oh

What the hell were you going to do?

We are Fallen

You grip your hoodie just over your scar, the rune lighting up at your touch.

We are Fallen

You weren't meant to die here. Not yet. 

Now

Taking a shaky breath, you lean over the entrance again. The seemingly bottomless pit does nothing to settle your nerves. You knew in your heart you didn't want to die. You could turn back, forget this ever happened. It's what your mom would have wanted. You–

We're just gonna ride it out

You feel a warm breath against your cheek.

I just wanna take it in

"Strange hours for a late night stroll, isn't it?"

Even when your fire runs out

You swiftly turn, and it takes every ounce of your self control to not scream bloody murder. 

Will you start it up again?

Dark eyes meet vermilion ones, and you knew in this moment that you were so, so fucked.

We are Fallen

Chapter Text

The last memory of your mom was the night she died.

Soft jazz plays in the manor library as you spin barefoot on the gleaming hardwood floors, the steady thump–thump, thump–thump of the rain soothing your nerves only slightly. While your mother loved them, you hated thunderstorms. Hated how the sound of thunder shot a current of fear through your veins.

But most of all, you hated dancing alone.

"Mom?" 

She glances up from her book. You loved how intelligent her eyes were, how smartly she dressed. How infectious her laughter was. Hated how you could never compare.

"Dance with me?" 

She lit up the room with her smile. Her black dress sways with her fluid movements as she spins you, humming a melody you don't recognize. Her eyes are sparkling, almost enough lift the veil that seemed forever present. For a moment, everything is perfect.

But these moments never last. Not for you.

A single knock at the door halts your dance. You quirk a brow. I thought Ms. Reyes went home?

The knocking continues. For a brief moment, everything is still. Your mother slides her gaze to the dark hallway, eyes narrowing as she pulls you closer. She did.

The knocking stops.

Stay here, her dark eyes seemed to say. She kisses your forehead tenderly, lingering for a moment before she turns toward the hallway. Like she was trying to tell you something, though you don't know that it means. Your gaze follows her retreating form and you can't help but notice that the tightness in your chest doesn't fade when you let her walk out of your sight.

That was your first mistake.

Thump–thump.

You don't believe your ears at first, but the knot in your chest grows tighter and at this point you have to believe the terrible thoughts that have seeped into your consciousness.

Bang!

It seems louder than her scream. Louder than the storm, louder than the ringing in your ears.

Thump–thump.

Your second mistake? Not running for your damn life.

You knew you should should've left. Gone to find Ms. Reyes, tell her what happened. Kept yourself safe.

But you don't. Instead, you force your legs down the hallway in a wobbly trance, wondering what could have made that noise and already knowing the answer. Wondering when the rug started looking so red. The cold air from the open door kisses your cheeks, wrapping around your already cold form like a frosty cocoon.

Thump–thump, thump–thump.

You stop dead in your tracks when you see a figure in black hovering over your unmoving mother. Their head snaps up, their masked face tilting to the side. They hadn't known you'd be here. Interesting.

A breath away. That's how close they are from your face in mere seconds, hovering over your shaking body, and you only now notice the strange symbols fluttering around them like little butterflies. Runes.

Your scream dies in your throat when they lean towards you. Who are you? You smell coffee and a strange, unfamilar metallic scent. 

Thump–thump, thump–thump.

Their glove-clad hand is soft and smooth, gently wiping your tears from your cheeks before sliding downwards. They tilt their head, inspecting the pendant in their hands. The last gift your mother had given before–

Thump–thump, thump...

And just like that, all hell breaks loose.

It all happens so fast. A flash of light is all you see before you're blown back into the floor-length windows several feet away. Shards of stained glass pepper your cheeks. You feel the icy, cold rain hit you in waves as you land on the patio outside, soaked in seconds, gasping for air. Your head hurt like hell. Your already uneven breathing stops when you hear footsteps approaching.

You turn your head, hazy vision barely making out a black figure slowly walking towards you, like they have all the time in the world. 

I can't move.

Thump–thump. You feel like you should say something, but you can't speak. 

It appears so.

A mask, cracked at the left eye socket, tilted upwards to show a malicious grin that turns soft the longer they look at you.

Why are you still here?

Thump–thump, thump... 

Can't say. 

A hand on your thigh, sliding down to your ankle.

Am I dying? 

Thump–thump, thump–thump. A deep, throaty chuckle.

No. Not yet. 

A soft, raspy mummer that you can't decipher. It sounds like an apology. What do they have to apologize for?

Snap.

Thump–

A scream.

Thump... 

A booming noise is what startles you back into brief consciousness. Using every ounce of your strength, you look up to see your house lit up in flames and a figure disappearing into the woods before everything goes dark.

It had been a few years since that night, and you still couldn't believe she was gone. 

You hug your blanket closer, deep in your thoughts as you glance at the window that overlooked the busy city life below. You'd just moved to New York from Tokyo after your father said that it was dangerous for the two of you to be in the same place at the same time.

Whatever that meant.

You wanted to go back to how things were before the fire. When you could look your father in the eye and know when he was telling the truth. When you could talk about your mom without Ms. Reyes looking so... sad. When you thought life was worth living. 

But you couldn't.

The manor had burned to ashes, leaving nothing in its wake. No library. No evidence. No body. 

No suspect.

Reyes had found you outside in the pouring rain, soaked and chilled to the bone, barely breathing. Apparently the neighbors had made a noise complaint. Go figure.

You were rushed into the emergency room with a concussion, cracked ribs, and a broken leg. It was only a few years later when they brought you in again with an ancient rune seared into the flesh of your sternum and shoulder blades. 

You woke up in the hospital.

Rey had stepped out to make a phone call to the staff and tell them you were okay. Or as okay as a ten year old could be with runes seared into her flesh could be.

Meanwhile, you had to deal with your father.

He sat to the left of you, as poised and elegant as always. He was young, successful, charming. Everyone loved him. You used to smile when you saw him.

Now, seeing his face just pissed you off.

His voice was low as he regarded you. "I do hope this won't be a family tradition. Me, coming home to you, who has been hospitalized for... Rather vague reasons. Explain yourself." 

"I don't suppose you're going to tell me why I'm named after a rune the Undergrounders believe to be a prophetic symbol, will you?"

"Monsters," he corrected. "They're not 'Undergrounders', Del. They're monsters." 

You roll your eyes. He'd never listen to you.

"Ms. Reyes is safe. She got you out just before the building collapsed on you." 

You shot him a look. "Don't act like that isn't exactly what you'd want."

For a brief moment, he looked almost hurt. "It isn't. Why do you think I don't care?" 

"Because you don't," you said evenly. "You only stuck around because mom died. And even then, you didn't stay. Not really. You just stuck me with the only person who would have me."

No one talked about your mother or the other six. It was hard to even think about it. Hard to accept the fact that they were gone.

His brow quirked up as he leaned back. He hadn't seen you so talkative since the incident. "I see you've regained your sharp tongue. I would be careful if I were you. I won't always be around to get you out of your little incidents" 

You sit up straighter, ignoring the searing pain in your chest as you pointed your finger at him. "See, that's where you're wrong. You're too stubborn to leave me the hell alone." 

His eyes flashed. "Now we're getting somewhere. Tell me, what do you want?" At this point he had left his chair and stood at the end of your bed, peering down at you with his dark eyes. "Do you want me dead in a ditch? Or is that what you want for yourself? Don't think I haven't noticed the scars on your arms." 

Your face flushed. "I just–"

"You just what?"

The coldness of his voice made you reel back in surprise. You  didn't know how to answer him. You didn't know what you wanted anymore. You stared at your hands in your lap. Tears blurred your vision as you met your father's stern gaze, and for a moment he looked regretful before turning to leave.

"I just want mom back." 

He halted. With his hand on the doorknob and facing away, he found it easier to speak about her.

"What a shame." His voice was soft now, tired as he thrusted the door open. "That she is the one thing in the world I cannot give you. Rest, you need it."

You heard the click of the door as it softly shut, and him and Ms. Reyes arguing outside, suddenly feeling the need to hide under your covers. Ms. Reyes had a stubborn, persisting personality, much like yours. A kind of... Perseverance, if you will. 

"Where do you think you're going?" 

"I have to leave a meeting in Seattle."

"You're leaving her?" 

"Don't give me that look. She hates me." 

"She needs you!" 

You covered your ears. The rune on your chest shone faintly through your gown, softly illuminating your room. It was an exact replica of the rune that had been carefully crafted into the leather of the journal, which had mysteriously disappeared.

Needless to say, you were an unfortunate regular.

You died, technically, in the emergency room at your last... visit. Reyes said the runes brought you back, but you didn't know what the that meant. You didn't know if you were grateful or not. You sure as hell weren't when they notified your next of kin. 

You'd never seen your father look anything but cool and confident, but when he barged into the emergency room and saw you, something inside him broke. You saw it in his eyes. He'd told you that he would protect you, that he'd never let anything like this from happening to you ever again.

It basically meant you were eternally grounded, which sucked ass. No parties, no illegals, no friends (not that you had any), no "unnecessary encounters' with the authorities. Nothing.

Absolutely nothing.

Just you in the penthouse alone with your thoughts, the noisy city life outside a constant reminder of what you could never have. Not anymore.

Your therapist said you had depression, but you called bullshit. You had I saw my mom get murdered in front of my eyes and no one will believe me except for my father, who I think is behind my mother's death because, hello, it's always the ex boyfriend. And maybe because I kind of hate him. And on top of that, I'm cursed. A real Sabrina the Teenage Witch scenario. And to top it off, I either can't sleep, or I have nightmares about the dick that killed my mom in front of my eyes and broke my leg. But other than that, I'm just peachy. How are you? 

"Reyes has entered," the security monitor sounded as the door slid open. She called out from the kitchen, sounding chipper as ever. 

"You awake, honey?"

There was a silent Are you still alive? In there somewhere, which was irritating and comforting at the same time. But you didn't resent her for her worrying. You glance at the bandage wrapped around your wrist, sucking in a breath. Yeah, she had every right to be worried.

"I'm–" You cringed at lifeless your voice sounded and cleared your throat. "I'm, uh, in the screen room."

You don't miss the sigh of relief. "How do you feel about getting some takeout tonight? I've been craving egg rolls!"

Reyes had flown all the way from Ebott to New York to care for you while your father remained in Tokyo for business. After the last incident, he threw himself into his work. Researching, he said. You supposed that was his way of coping, but that didn't stop you from being pissed. It was like he was trying to forget you.

And Reyes–your fucking nanny–did more for you in a year than your father did for you in your entire lifetime. Granted, you were only fifteen, but he should be more involved in your life, damn it. Reyes didn't owe you or your family shit, but she was still always there for you.

Your mom would want me to be, she'd said, hugging you tight. And I'd miss you too much to leave, dulzura de mi vida

It was almost funny, you thought. Everything was different, but in little ways, everything stayed the same. 

"Delta?"

"I–" You sucked in a breath. You'd been spacing out again. "I like Thai. We haven't had curry in a while."

She pokes her head around the door frame, grinning. "I like how you think, Mija. Pick something and I'll call the Thai place real quick," she said, already dialing the number. You see the the giddy smile on her face before she disappears into the kitchen and snicker. She tried to keep it on the downlow, but even you noticed she had the hots for the waitress at the Thai place two blocks from your apartment.

You tap the floating screen on the coffee table, a neat little device that was sleek and brand new. It hovered maybe five, six inches from the table charging port and controlled the devices in your apartment. TV, stove, fridge, security monitor, etcetera.

Courtesy of your father, of course.

You sifted through cheesy romcoms until you found Friends (which isn't bad, but it was on the Ross and Rachel arc, and you kind of wished they would have paired her with Joey because Ross was a colossal dick) and settled into the sofa, only just now noticing the clouds in the distance.

Thunderstorms didn't scare you. Not anymore. But the fact that your parents were into deep shit serious enough that your mom got murdered and got you life detention chilled you to your core. No, you weren't scared of the storm.

Tonight, and maybe only tonight, it was raining somewhere else.

You're so deep in your thoughts that you don't notice Reyes is in front of you, leaning over with her hands on her knees as she catches her breath. She's clutching her phone in her hand in a vice-like grip. Sir Dumbass is displayed on the screen. You immediately tense.

Oh, shit. He hasn't contacted either of you since the incident. You had a feeling he wasn't just saying hi. 

Shit.

"Rey," you say, slipping from the couch onto the floor next to her. You gently brush dark curls from her damp cheeks, almost positive your father had said some dumb shit to hurt her. "Why would he call you? What did he say to you? Is everything–"

"Turn on the–" Inhale. "TV to–" Exhale. "News!"

On any other occasion, you would say something smartassy like any typical teenager would, but not now. Not when she's looking at you like the world is falling apart.

You order the news to be turned on. The screen switches from Friends to News 7, and you swear your heart stops beating when you read the headline. 

"Barrier Broken: Monsters Set Free ."