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My Soul For Yours

Chapter Text

Frisk closed their eyes, their head comfortably settled into their pillow.

They found themself looking through someone else’s eyes into a beige room. Paintings hung on the walls, several of which were of singular bones, and directly across from their “host” hung a picture of three people. Well, “people” wasn’t entirely accurate, as the picture depicted two skeletons and a blue-skinned humanoid with red-and-blue fins for ears and a long red ponytail hanging down her back.

They heard someone yelling from an adjacent room.

“UGH!” Then came thumping, the kind of noise you’d hear if someone was stomping around in the room next door. A skeleton poked his head through the doorway, the taller of the two from the picture. “Ș̷̡͍̮̟̌̌̈́̎͛͘Á̵̫̦̩̦͈̮̣̺̅̋̄̔̈́ͅŅ̸̤̘̱̬͉̯̦̏͗̾̽S̶̨̡̟͔̥͕̮͌̒͜! You’re so lazy! Come on, get up!” The first word he’d yelled was indecipherable, no matter how they played it back in their head, as all names were in dream-memories.

“Hey, P̶͙̜̤͉̜̜͚̩̭͐̒͌̔̑͌̒͠ͅä̸̢̢͍̘̞̣͎̫̓̑̔̃͛͑͛̍̅͜͜p̵̺͙̬̠̙̀̋ͅy̵̡̺̼͇̼̬͐̽̏͋̓̽̅͘r̵̲͕̟̘̺̲̒̃̽ủ̵̱͚̦̳̋͊̾͝s̸̯͂̾́͌,” Frisk heard their host say in a deep, slightly rumbling voice that vibrated within their host’s chest. “Wassup?”

“You know very well ‘what’s up,’ Ṡ̴̜͙̔̑̍ͅâ̸͖͓͚̪̣̽n̶̛̮̣̰̥̯͉̜̓̈́̈́͂̌̚ͅs̵̢̛̲̤̣̺̜̱̘̍̄̂̄̓̔͝͝͝!” the other replied with an air of annoyance, his red-gloved hands resting on his hips. “As I said before, you’re so lazy! It’s unbearable. Get up.” He frowned at the host.

“You could even say it’s ‘un-plaze-ent,’” he countered, chuckling a little as the tall skeleton flipped out.

“Ș̷̡͍̮̟̌̌̈́̎͛͘Á̵̫̦̩̦͈̮̣̺̅̋̄̔̈́ͅŅ̸̤̘̱̬͉̯̦̏͗̾̽S̶̨̡̟͔̥͕̮͌̒͜! That’s not funny and you know it!” The taller skeleton was practically scowling by this point, arms crossed against his chest in frustration and one booted foot tapping the ground.

"Aw, c’mon, bro, I found it quite… humerus.”

“Oh my GOD!” The door slammed behind him as he left.

Frisk awoke to the sound of their alarm. Their soulmate must be quite the punny guy.

 

 

 

Sans opened the front door slowly, cautious of how much noise he was making. He didn’t want to wake up Papyrus, who slept like a little kid if left undisturbed, but was easily woken up by noise.

He crept up the stairs, glad that his pink slippers muffled his footsteps. He paused at the open door to his brother’s room. Peeking in for a moment, he observed Papyrus, asleep, in his bed, the red covers pulled up around him. He sighed a little, happy that his brother was happily dreaming, and pulled the door shut with as little noise as possible.
Sans padded across the hall to his own room, kicking off his slippers before climbing into bed. It had been a long day at the lab, and he was grateful for the peace and quiet, and for a chance to relax.

Sans found himself looking through someone else’s eyes. Another soulmate memory, he thought.

His host looked down at their hands, seemingly buried in their own thoughts that he couldn’t see. Sans wished he could look around, but in someone else’s memories, he was victim to whatever they had experienced.

"F̶̛͚̹̥͕̘͕́͛͌̽͝͝r̵̛̤̱̟͍̙͍̳̀̍̂̐̈́̿͒̐͝ͅi̷̛̦̪̟͕͉͎͚̮̊̿̍̊͂̑s̸̘̝̋̓̾k̸̮̙͍̘̹͖̰̹̈̃͠!” The voice came from behind his host. Looking up, they turned, and he could see that the voice belonged to a white-furred goat lady. “I have made pie, and it is time to come in and eat.”

His host replied, “I’m coming, T̵̨̗̔̋̇̐o̴̥̯͒̊̒̊r̸̥̤̒̂ͅi̷̝̱̯̼̬͛̉͐̈̕ḙ̴͚̥̜̻̗̬̟͙̐̇͂̾͂͂̊͑̚ͅl̸̡̛̳̰̫͚̺͈͕̯̾̈͌̂͐͘̚̕͜!” Sans had always wished he could understand the names spoken in the memories, but he knew that it just wasn’t how things worked. He’d have to figure out his soulmate’s identity on his own.

The host walked into the house after the goat lady, closing the door behind them.

What was that smell? Sans had never before smelled something so heavenly, and he suddenly wondered if his host would eat whatever it was.

The host was now in a dining room, or kitchen, maybe. A square table filled most of the small room, and three people sat around it—well, two more goat monsters and a red-eyed human. The human waved, and the host waved back with a hand that was definitely human. Well, that’s a clue.

The goat lady reentered the room from a doorway on the opposite wall, coming to sit next to the larger of the two seated monsters, a goat male with a blonde beard and kind eyes.

“Well, dig in, C̸̫̮͚̥͇͑̓̒̐͂͌̓̒̑ḥ̶̮̮̱͗ä̸͍̱̜͖́̆̉̒̍͆͜͠r̶͉̞̤͔̥̖̊͋̀̓̇̾͛͛͠ā̸̳͇̬̅̿̈̿͂, Ą̸̧̧̙̹̗̗̫̗͋̈́͂̄͜s̷̹̝͈̠̱̖͔̫̟̜̈́͊͝͝r̵̜̬̤̹͑̂̽̕͜͝ì̴̤̫̘̘̮͓͜e̴̬̜͈̗̩̿̀͌̂͋̅̚̕͘l̵̺̔, F̶̛͚̹̥͕̘͕́͛͌̽͝͝r̵̛̤̱̟͍̙͍̳̀̍̂̐̈́̿͒̐͝ͅi̷̛̦̪̟͕͉͎͚̮̊̿̍̊͂̑s̸̘̝̋̓̾k̸̮̙͍̘̹͖̰̹̈̃͠,” the goat lady said, her tone almost unbearably warm. The host turned their gaze to the middle of the table, where a large pie sat, and Sans knew immediately that it was where the scent had been emanating from.

“Why are we celebrating again?” inquired the red-eyed human, a playful look on xyr face.

The goat lady raised a stern eyebrow. “Why, C̸̫̮͚̥͇͑̓̒̐͂͌̓̒̑ḥ̶̮̮̱͗ä̸͍̱̜͖́̆̉̒̍͆͜͠r̶͉̞̤͔̥̖̊͋̀̓̇̾͛͛͠ā̸̳͇̬̅̿̈̿͂, it’s F̶̛͚̹̥͕̘͕́͛͌̽͝͝r̵̛̤̱̟͍̙͍̳̀̍̂̐̈́̿͒̐͝ͅi̷̛̦̪̟͕͉͎͚̮̊̿̍̊͂̑s̸̘̝̋̓̾k̸̮̙͍̘̹͖̰̹̈̃͠’s and your birthday today. Well, the day we took you both in,” she amended, a thoughtful look on her face, as if reminiscing.

When Sans awoke from his dream, it was still mostly dark outside. They must be a happy little family… kinda wish Paps could’ve had more of a family, more than just me and Undyne. But, I guess, when I find my soulmate, we’ll all be one family.

Chapter Text

“Another long day, another night of rest to come,” muttered Frisk, sliding under their covers. “I wonder what kind of memory I’ll see today.”

The memory they saw first was not a pleasant one, which was rare, and only happened every once in a while. A soulmate’s memories were supposed to be happy, at least the ones shown to their future partner.

In this particular one, their host’s skeletal hands were cradling the body of his brother, which was covered in red. The host sobbed into his chest, tears not leaving wet spots thanks to the large–and ever-growing–blood spot.

“P̺̘͉̼̓ͧ̚a̴̠̖̠̟͎̲͋͏̦̚ͅp̸͉̂ͬ͏̥̦̔̀͠y̡̠͖͓̝ͪ͂̎̚͠r̳̪͔͈͎͑ͯ̈͝ṳ̤̻̠̟͖̻͋s̷̰͓ͫ̈ͥͧͪ̿͡, no,” the host pleaded. “How could this have happened? I… I’m sorry I couldn’t… do anything…"<

Frisk despaired at the scene before them. They’d quite liked their soulmate’s brother, and they hoped that this hadn’t been how he’d died.

Suddenly, a great flash of what looked like red lightning appeared in front of him, so bright he’d had to shield his still-wet eyesockets with one hand, and when the light dissipated, and once the host could lower his hand, a striking figure stood there. It seemed to be the same blue-skinned fish lady Frisk had seen in the photograph from the previous dream, but instead of the enormous smile she’d worn in the picture, her spiked yellow teeth were not on display and her mouth was closed in a frown.

“Get him up!” she ordered the host, who immediately hoisted his brother up into her arms. “Let’s go, I know someone who can help.” She held out a free hand to him, and he took it.

Frisk awoke in the middle of the night, covered in a cold sweat and shivering a little. That had not been terribly pleasant. Actually, it had just been plain terrible. They hoped that the fish lady’s friend had been able to help


Sans eased himself into bed with a little groan from the pain. His bones were sore today from all of the tasks he’d had to do in the lab, and he was happy to escape into his soulmate’s memories.

The host seemed young and rather small in this one, so it was probably one of their childhood memories. They cowered, afraid of… something, and it soon became clear to Sans just what they feared.

A human man towered above them, a thunderous frown on his face, his forehead creased. His voice boomed in the small space.

“You little sh*t, it’s your fault your mother died! And you can’t even do what I tell you to! I suppose that will mean another punishment.”

Sans looked on in horror as the man went on to strike the little host several times. Once his hand made contact with their face, and Sans could’ve sworn he heard something crack. The host whimpered, but the man moved as if he were going to hit them again, and they quieted in terror.

“Am I clear?” growled the man.

They nodded quickly, one tiny hand on their bruised cheek, tears in their eyes.

“I SAID, am I clear?”

“Y-yes, f-father."

Sans awoke from the dream, sitting bolt upright, tears from his own eyes falling down his face. How could someone be that cruel to a child? And how could that man still call himself a father after treating his own child like that? Well, in any case, Sans was very glad that they now had a new family, one abundantly kinder. Shuddering, he tried not to think about what might’ve happened if their soulmate hadn’t been able to get away.

Chapter Text

Frisk hoped that tonight’s dream would be happier than last night’s. After all, how could it possibly get any worse from that?

Afterward, they couldn’t recall much of the dream.

The host was lounging on the couch in the most comfortable way possible (which also happened to be the worst possible posture), watching some terrible cartoon, when his brother opened the door, this time somewhat cheerfully and not as though he was mad at his brother like before.

“Hey, S̫̘̣͆ͣͨa͈̣̹̿͘n̨̲̍̿̾͜͝s̶̘̩͉͓̩ͪ̀̑̐̍, we got a letter from Asgore about this fancy party he’s hosting,” the taller brother announced, and Frisk felt a little thrill at having heard a name they recognized.

“Okay, good for you, but what’s this gotta do with me?” the host interjected, eyes still glued to the TV.

The other sighed. “It says I can bring you along too, and that even though he’s never gotten to meet you, you must be a good person if you’re my brother.”

The host looked up at that, glancing at his brother. “Ah, well, I guess with a warm welcome like that, I can’t possibly refuse.” The taller skeleton’s face visibly brightened.

Without any warning, a door slammed open somewhere else in the house, and a thundering of feet announced the arrival of fish lady, who practically bowled over the taller skeleton in her mad rush. Her Cheshire-wide smile displayed her yellow, jagged teeth, and her eyebrows were at a sharp point downwards.

“Hey, dorks!” she yelled at the top of her lungs. The host raised a bonebrow at her volume and enthusiasm, but her smile only grew wider, if that were even possible. “Didja get an invite to that party Asgore’s hosting?” Again, there was Frisk’s father’s name.

“Yes, we did, Ų͈̲̘͒ͩ̄ͮ͝n̝͈͓̱̗͔̑͗̈́͡d̸̹͉̝͎̳̍͊y͇ͣ͑ͬͥͭ̽͋̃͟͝ṅ̼̙̔̀͗ͬ͢͢ȩ̝͛͒͋͜,” said the skeleton she was currently standing on top of, and she looked down at the sound of his voice.

“Oh, damn, sorry!” she apologized, lending him a hand to help him up, which he took with one of his red-gloved hands. “I didn’t break anything, did I?”

“No, I don’t think so,” he replied, possibly a little haughty as he dusted off his clothing and smoothed out the letter he still held, which had become considerably crumpled underneath him due to the fish lady’s unintentional assault.

“Anyway, the letter?” she pried.

“Yes, I’m invited, and so is S̫̘̣͆ͣͨa͈̣̹̿͘n̨̲̍̿̾͜͝s̶̘̩͉͓̩ͪ̀̑̐̍.” His expression was unreadable, but looked a little cold, probably due to her having trampled him.

“And since it was such a nice invitation, I guess I gotta go now,” the host added with a shrug of his shoulders.

The fish lady stared at him. “You? A fancy party?” After a second, she added, “No offense.”

“None taken,” he replied, tone still as joking as always. “But you? A fancy party?” He stared at her, willing her to break.

After a moment, she did break, bursting out into loud, raucous laughter. “You got me there, S̫̘̣͆ͣͨa͈̣̹̿͘n̨̲̍̿̾͜͝s̶̘̩͉͓̩ͪ̀̑̐̍! I probably wouldn’t be going either if Asgore hadn’t specifically asked for me to be there.”

Sure, it may have been cacophonous, but her laughter was infectious, and it didn’t take long for the two skeletons to start chuckling too.

Frisk smiled at the ceiling. What a pleasant memory… then they recalled the look on the fish lady’s face when she’d been called out, and they started laughing too. They just couldn’t help it. Now Frisk really wanted to meet these guys, as soon as possible, and they knew that they would be attending the party too. (Although, to be honest, Frisk was a little scared of what the fish lady might end up doing to them.)


Sans stared at the ceiling in the dark, willing himself to fall asleep, and it didn’t take very long.

The host looked down at a golden dress they were holding out in front of them.

“I have to wear this?” they asked, clearly aghast, if their tone was anything to go off of.

The other human snickered. “You did agree that you’d let Mom choose what you’d wear to Dad’s party.”

“I did, but… She seemed so excited, and… I couldn’t say no…” Their voice carried a hint of resignation to their fate.

“That’s why I’m so glad she didn’t ask me, I’ve already gotten a tux.” Xyr red eyes glimmered, amused by the host’s discomfort.

“I guess I’ll just have to hope that my dysphoria won’t be too bad.” Hearing this, the other’s malicious glee disappeared from xyr face and xe looked sympathetic and a touch concerned.

“Hadn’t thought about that, I hope so too.”

Dysphoria? What was… oh, his soulmate must be that human thing called “nonbinary.” Sans had heard a bit about it, spending as much time surfing the web for memes as he had, but he decided then that he’d better read up and make himself more familiar with the term.

“Oh well. No use worrying now,” his host concluded, the tone of cheerfulness in their voice false. Sans knew that fake happiness, he’d used it plenty of times on Papyrus, and it seemed to work at least partially on the red-eyed human too, because xe smiled again.

Sans lay awake thinking for a while. Was the party the humans had talked about the same one he and his brother had been invited to? Come to think of it, hadn’t they said that their father was hosting the party…? Wasn’t Asgore that blonde-bearded goat he’d seen in their memories? He'd only met the guy a few times, when Asgore had come to visit Alphys at her lab, but the more he thought about it, the more he was sure of it.

And now that Sans knew what his soulmate would be wearing at the party the next day–which happened to be quite lucky, considering he could’ve been shown any of their memories at random–it would be easier to find the person he’d be with for the rest of his life.

Chapter Text

“I hate this,” Frisk muttered through gritted teeth.

 

“I know,” Chara sympathized, xyr face only displaying the slightest grimace at Frisk’s discomfort.

 

That was Frisk’s immediate response to having put on the dress. It wasn’t completely uncomfortable, but there was only so much you could do when putting on a dress could give you a dysphoria attack at any moment.

 

“At least it matches your eyes,” quipped Chara, then winced. “Sorry.”

 

“I mean, your tie matches your eyes, so…” Something occurred to Frisk, and they looked around. “Where’s Asriel?”

 

“Still changing,” Chara answered, smirk on xyr face. “Must be all that fur, has to make it look ‘artfully messy.’ I don’t get him.”

 

“Hey, stop it,” complained Asriel, who, as it happened, had just entered the room in time to hear them making fun of him. He gave a mock pout, and Chara stuck out zir tongue at him, to which Frisk rolled their eyes.


“What is this?” Sans asked, pulling at the loop of his tie around his neck as he looked at himself in the mirror.

 

“It’s a fancy party, Sans, you have to dress accordingly.” Papyrus fussed with his own tie. “This is what you agreed to, re member?”

 

Sans raised a bonebrow at his reflection. “I dunno, Paps, I guess it just didn’t occur to me that I’d hafta dress up.”

 

Papyrus scoffed at his brother’s lack of foresight. “Well, duh.”

 

“You guys almost ready?” Undyne bounced into the room. She also wore a tux, her tie a black one.

 

“Nearly,” piped up Papyrus cheerfully, peering at Sans’ tie in the mirror. “I don’t think Sans can tie a tie properly.”

 

“Here, let me do it.” Sans surrendered, allowing Undyne to untie and retie his tie for him, hoping she wasn’t too excited to control her strength, as so often happened. “There, that looks right.” She stepped back, giving him a pat on the shoulder.

 

“Ow,” he muttered under his breath. She was always unintentionally forceful in everything she did.

 

Undyne seemed to remember something, jogging back over to the door to lean her head out into the hallway to call to someone they couldn’t see. “Hey, Alphys, you ready?”

 

Alphys was Undyne’s soulmate, and Sans’ boss, actually. A high-pitched voice distinctly belonging to her uttered a slightly muffled, “I-I guess, b-b-but…” from outside the room.

 

Undyne sighed. “I’ll be a few minutes, guys.” She jogged out into the hallway to give a motivational speech. Neither of the brothers heard what she said, but they could tell from the tone she always used when attempting to fire up a friend.

 

She re-entered. “Okay, now Alphys has enough self-confidence to do this. Let’s go, we don’t want to be late.”


Frisk found themself standing awkwardly by the door next to Chara and Asriel, having just entered the large room, which would be empty if it were devoid of people. They had no desire to “mingle,” even if it had been what Asgore had requested they all do. Recalling that their soulmate must be here, Frisk began to look around for either of the two monsters they’d seen him with, still possessing very few clues as to the actual appearance of their soulmate.

 

Suddenly, a light caught Frisk’s eye, and they froze. On the other side of the room, on one of the bar stools, sat a short skeleton, his soul glowing a blinding white.

 

“Do you see that?” Frisk asked Chara, who stood beside them, a little breathlessly.

 

“See what?” Chara wondered, clearly not seeing it.

 

“Never mind,” muttered Frisk. They watched the skeleton for a few minutes longer, amused as his taller brother stormed over to yell at him for drinking from what appeared to be a bottle of ketchup. Once his brother had stomped away again, they began to make their way over to him.


The ketchup had begun to take its effect on Sans. He was dully aware that someone had sat down on another bar stool next to him, but took no interest, until he noticed a red glow emanating from that direction. Turning his head very slightly to look, he became very aware of the dress they were wearing–a golden dress. He paused, bottle in hand, and slowly lifted his eyes to their face.

 

His soulmate’s face was speckled with the prettiest golden-brown freckles, which matched their eyes, which were large and a rather striking shade of gold, and he found he couldn’t look away.

 

“You have the most beautiful eyes,” he heard himself say. Well, at least that wasn’t the worst first thing to say to your soulmate.

 

“Thanks,” they replied. He saw their hand move as if to take his, and he held perfectly still, for fear of scaring them off. He felt like a cameraman in a nature documentary, and his soulmate was the wild, beautiful beast he was trying to capture on film, although her beauty would never be quite as amazing in a video as it was in person.

 

Sure enough, they grabbed his hand, blushing faintly as they looked into his eyes, and the glowing light subsided at their contact.

 

It was Frisk who first found their voice again.

 

“I’m Frisk. You are…?” They waited, a little anxiously, for his reply. They hadn’t realized how badly they wanted to know his name.

 

“Frisk, huh? I’m Sans,” he answered with a quiet chuckle. His voice had always sounded deep in the memories, but now that they were hearing it for themself, it almost seemed deeper.

 

“So, Sans, why are you drinking ketchup over here all alone?” Suddenly self-conscious, they let go of his hand, and he broke the gaze.

 

“Huh?” He glanced at the plastic bottle he still held. “Oh, this? I’m a skeleton, so our biology’s weird. For some reason, the only human food substance that I can actually intake right is ketchup, and for whatever reason, it works kinda like alcohol on me.”

 

“So you… get drunk, on… ketchup?” inquired Frisk, one eyebrow raised. “That is weird, but actually kind of interesting.”

 

“Yeah. And since I work atta lab, my boss, being another monster, is fascinated by it and keeps asking to ‘study’ me, which just sounds strange.” He shook his ketchup bottle experimentally.

 

Sans really felt himself relaxing around Frisk. It was almost like… their soul was reaching out to his, and soft tendrils of warm red energy was wrapping around his soul, telling him that everything was alright, as long as they were together. He’d been seeing Frisk’s memories for a month now, but he’d never met them before; yet in the presence of their soul, he felt like he was talking to an old friend. Like he was home.

 

And Sans wondered how Frisk would react if he told them what he was thinking. He wanted to see the stars in their eyes, those golden pools of honey. Piece by piece, he explained every bit of what he was thinking about Frisk to them.

 

“That’s amazing,” Frisk breathed. Of course, “amazing” was underwhelming here, but there really was no words to describe it. Nobody had ever told them something so profound. It was a far cry from what they’d been told as a child, certainly. “Thank you.”

 

Sans’ expression turned… concerned, all of a sudden. “You’re crying.”

 

And just then, raising a hand to their cheek, Frisk discovered that they really were crying.

 

“I don’t know why I’m doing that,” they whispered, seemingly surprised that they were crying.

 

Sans felt the overpowering urge to take them in his arms, to embrace them, to love them, keep them safe, and never let them go. To tell Frisk everything would be alright now, and they wouldn’t ever have to worry again. They may have been happy with their current family, but before that, he was all too aware that their life had not been easy.

 

Frisk sniffled, surprised by the sensation of Sans wrapping his arms around them, but soon they relaxed into the embrace, wrapping their arms around him and burying their face in his shoulder.

 

“I’m sorry,” they cried into his shoulder. “I don’t know why I’m crying.”

 

“It’s okay, it’s alright now,” Sans whispered into their soft brown hair, ketchup bottle having been long discarded. He cast around a suspicious glance;  for some reason, he already felt a deep connection with Frisk, already cared very much about them. He despised the idea of anyone else seeing them crying, vulnerable, like this. “Let’s go outside, away from some of these people.” Gently, he wiped away some of their tears with one sleeve before grabbing their hand to lead them outside.


Frisk was oblivious to the rest of the world, the only thing they noticed was Sans’ hand holding their own. (For a skeleton, his bones weren't all that hard, and were actually surprisingly soft to the touch.) They didn't even hear Chara calling their name, wondering where they were going.

 

“You can let go of my hand now.” Frisk blinked. They hadn't realized that they were outside already, and they glanced down at their hand, still held in Sans’ grasp, before looking up at his face.

 

“Could I… hold your hand for a little while longer?” Frisk managed to say, and they felt themself flushing, but hoped it wasn't a terribly visible blush.

 

(As it was, the tip of their nose was tinged slightly pink, but tactfully, Sans chose to ignore it.)

 

“Okay.”


The two of them spent the next ten minutes looking out towards the street, idly watching the cars go by, looking anywhere but at each other. They didn't say a word; indeed, neither of them could.

 

Finally, Frisk spoke.

 

“Tell me about yourself.”

 

The inquiry took Sans by surprise; surely they already knew about him, considering they'd seen his memories.

 

“Well, what do ya already know ‘bout me?”

 

Frisk smiled, and Sans felt their happiness resonate both in their soul and in his own. “You're lazy, you love puns. Your favorite color is blue. You've got a younger brother who's taller than you, absolutely hates your puns, and wishes you'd work harder. Your boss at the lab is a yellow lizard about your height who wears glasses and stutters a lot, but when she gets going on a topic she knows about, she'll talk forever.” Sans chuckled, all of the above was certainly true.

 

“And… what do you know about me?” asked Frisk shyly.

 

“You were adopted by a family of three goat monsters. You have another sibling, another human, who was also adopted. I know you use 'they’ as your pronouns, and your sibling uses 'xe.’ I know you're sweet and kind and often put others’ needs above your own.” He paused, thought for a moment, and went 'screw it.’ “And I know you're gorgeous.”

 

At this, Frisk's entire face flushed. “Th-thanks… but you're just saying that because I'm your soulmate.” Their eyes dropped to the ground between their feet.

 

Sans’ brows furrowed. “What? No, I- I mean it. Why would you think that?”

 

They frowned. “I… I don't know, maybe- maybe this is too much all at once.” Avoiding Sans’ eyes, they let a tiny breath of air escape their mouth. They'd never truly gotten used to compliments, or people caring, and still didn't fully feel like they deserved either.

 

He let go of their hand. “Sorry.” He wondered if he'd done or said something wrong.

 

Again, a silence settled between them, but it was far less comfortable than earlier, the air feeling almost stuffy.

 

“Is this… about your father?” he said after a moment.

 

Immediately, Sans wished he could take it back, but they'd already heard, evidenced by the way their face had blanched and hands had curled into fists at the mention of their father.

 

“So, you saw those memories.” Their tone bordered on accusatory, but was tinged with something a little sad. He could almost hear the years of abuse in their face, see how betrayed they felt that he'd known, and it brought back the unbidden memory of a young Frisk tearfully gripping their bruised face.

 

“Just… one.” It was true, most of Frisk's memories that Sans had witnessed had been happy ones, or neutral at the very least. Still, he winced, knowing he shouldn't have mentioned their father. After all, who could bear to even think about their father who'd beat them as a child? “Sorry,” he repeated, volume dropping to a mutter.

 

A voice came from the doors to their right.

 

A white-furred goat head peeked outside. “Frisk? Are you out here? Chara said–” He broke off, having spotted Frisk, but as soon as he noticed their expression, his face fell. He looked at Sans suspiciously, green eyes flicking back and forth between the two before focusing on Sans, narrowed. The pitch of his voice dropped dangerously. “Look, friend, if you hurt Frisk in any way–”

 

Frisk grabbed his arm. “Asriel, i-it's not like that.”

 

“Okay, good. So then, who are you and how do you know my little sibling? I'm Asriel, by the way.” His voice had taken on a falsely cheery tone–one Sans knew all too well, having used it to ‘warn’ anyone who'd been mean to Papyrus what would happen if they chose to continue doing so–but Sans could still sense the hostility behind the façade.

 

“Nice ta meetcha,” began Sans. “I'm Sans the skeleton. You might have seen my brother Papyrus in there; he's tall, and loud,” he said cheerfully. He hurried to the point, seeing suspicion flicker in the goat's eyes. “Anyway, I'm Frisk's… soulmate.” The words still sounded so foreign on his tongue that he had to pause before uttering the last word.

 

Surprised and possibly a bit embarrassed by having read the situation so wrong, Asriel’s eyes widened. “Really? Then why do you seem so upset?” His gaze shifted to Frisk, who sighed.

 

“An… unfortunate conversation.” They put a smile on their face, but it didn’t reach their eyes. “I’m fine, I promise, Asriel.”

 

“If you say so.” His misgivings about Sans temporarily forgotten, Asriel began talking to the both of them as if they’d known each other for years–and, Sans supposed, Asriel and Frisk had. “So, Sans, how do you know Asgore?”

 

“Uh, well, I work at Alphys’ lab, and he’s come around a few times to see how things are going. He seems nice. ...he offered me tea, actually,” Sans added, recalling the visit in question.

 

“Yeah, that sounds like Dad.” The young goat smiled, and Frisk did too, a real one this time, even if it was small. (Sans was more than a little relieved; he hadn’t wanted to ruin their first meeting like this. Hopefully Asriel would be able to salvage Frisk’s night.)

 

“So, uh, what about you, Asriel? Met your soulmate?” asked Sans.

 

“Who, me?” Asriel feigned a quick laugh. “Nah, not yet.”

 

“Well, I hope you find ‘em soon.” Sans gave Asriel a pat on the shoulder, to which the goat looked surprised, but only nodded. Then Sans turned to Frisk. “Feeling better yet?”

 

The expression in their honey eyes matched the soft smile on their face. “Yeah, I’m feeling better now, thank you.” They looped an arm through their brother’s. “Come on, let’s go back inside now. Bye, Sans, I hope we meet again soon.”

 

Sans remained outside in the same spot for a moment longer, sighing as he sheepishly rubbed the back of his skull with one hand. He hadn’t expected Frisk to be such an angel–and they were his angel.

Chapter Text

Frisk yawned, stretching their arms above their head. Sleepily, they squinted at their clock, and, with some difficulty, managed to read the time: 10:30. They fished around for their bookmark, and, upon finding it, promptly inserted it into the open book on their lap. Closing the book, they set it aside.

Frisk hadn’t slept all night. They couldn’t stop thinking about Sans and the way he made them feel, no matter how hard they tried, and after an hour of trying fruitlessly to fall asleep, they had picked up a book and decided to read until the clock reached an appropriate hour of the morning to get up.

They trudged out of their room and down the hallway to breakfast. If they were being honest, they were barely awake now. They didn’t often stay up all night, and nowhere near as often as Chara did, who’d skip sleep so often they were basically nocturnal.

Asriel greeted Frisk when they entered the kitchen with a small nod, looking up from his phone. “Morning, Frisk!” They gave a weak wave in response, and he sipped his coffee.

“Where’s Toriel?” Frisk asked, looking around through a fog induced by their tired state.

“Mom’s outside,” said Asriel, a small smirk on his face. “Dad’s trying to teach her to garden.”

Chara practically skipped into the kitchen. “They’re probably just flirting in that gross way parents do.” Xe grabbed a cup from a drawer next to Frisk, muttering a quiet “‘scuse me,” before walking over to the sink. Holding xyr cup under the faucet xe’d just turned on, xe rolled xyr eyes, then changed the subject. “So, guys, how was the party?”

Asriel groaned, setting down his coffee cup to bury his face in one hand. “Kinda awful. I got stuck talking to this old businessman, I guess, and he kept going on and on about money and taxes and finances. I had no idea what he was talking about, but I just had to grimace my way through it because Dad said to mingle!”

“Meanwhile, I had a perfectly pleasant experience.” Chara took a casual drink of water while grinning maliciously at xyr brother, who just shot xem a mock glare. “I made a few new friends, I think! There was this crazy blue-skinned fish woman who did a lot of grinning so widely that it seemed like her face was splitting open and laughing too loud. I think she liked me.” Xe cleared xyr throat. “Anyway, Frisk, what about you?”

Excitedly, Asriel stood up, his leaf-green eyes animated as he recalled the events of last night. “Hey, Chara, guess what? Do you know who Frisk met last night? They met their–”

“Asriel, shut up,” Frisk blurted, and Asriel stopped mid-sentence, looking like a scolded puppy. “Oh, no, wait. I didn’t mean it like that. Sorry, Azzy. I just… want to tell xem myself, ya know?”

“I get it,” he nodded, looking a little less hurt. Confused, Chara’s red eyes darted between them.

“So, uh…” Frisk suddenly felt pressured, and their hands began to shake. “S-so, Chara, I met…” They swallowed thickly. “I met my s-soulmate last night.” They stared at their hands, wishing they’d stop shaking.

“Wow, really?” The response they’d expected, but something about xyr tone was strange, and Frisk looked  up to notice xem tense up. They raised an eyebrow at Chara, whose eyes widened as xe realized that Frisk had figured out that something was up. “Uh, Frisk, I need to talk to you for a minute!” Hastening over to Frisk, Chara grabbed their arm, dragging them out into the hallway.

Asriel watched them go, a little bewildered, but after a moment just shrugged, returning to his coffee and his morning scroll through Tumblr.

 

“What is it?” Frisk questioned their sibling. Hold on… Frisk could put two and two together. “Did… did you meet your soulmate last night too?” Chara’s back stiffened, but then xe sighed, releasing all of that tension as xe relaxed.

“Yeah, I did, but… I mean, he seems so nice, and I really like him, but I don’t think I’m ready for any of this yet,” xe worried.

Frisk blinked. “What, a serious relationship?” Chara had dated all through high school, but xe’d never had deep feelings for any of the people xe’d dated; it had always been more of a casual thing for xem, so, on second thought, perhaps that wasn’t so surprising.

“Yeah, that.” Xe nervously tapped one finger on xyr thigh.

“Well, I’m sure he’d understand if you told him that, and you can start out slow,” Frisk reassured xem, reaching out to put a hand on Chara’s shoulder, relieved that xe stopped tapping, but wishing xe would look Frisk in the eye. “Hey, what’s his name?”

Xe smiled faintly. “His name? It’s Papyrus.”

What. Frisk froze, trying to recall something. “I think… I think that my soulmate is his brother! He’s a skeleton, right?”

“Yes, he is,” Chara answered, clearly taken aback.

Frisk chuckled disbelievingly. “His brother Sans is my soulmate. That’s so weird.”

Chara straightened decisively. “Okay, I’ll talk to him.” Frisk smiled.

 


 

Sans idly watched the looping trajectory of a fly’s flight path as it neared the ceiling. He was lying on his back on the couch. The TV was on, playing some cliche romance, but it was just meaningless background noise to Sans, whose mind was clearly somewhere else.

“Sans?” A voice came from next to him, and he jumped a little, startled, as he noticed his brother leaning over him.

“Oh, hey, Paps,” he replied half-heartedly.

“Are you alright? Ever since the party, you’ve seemed more out of it, and your head’s been way up in the clouds. You haven’t even said a single pun!” His bonebrows furrowed. “Did something happen?” Sans just looked at him, gaze bordering on blank, and Papyrus audibly exhaled in a way that seemed rather drained. He raised a gloved palm to his forehead. “You know you can talk to me…”

The pinpoints of light in Sans’ eyes blinked off and then back on again just as quickly, now looking less blurred around the edges than before. “Sorry, Papyrus. To tell you the truth, I met my soulmate at that party. Since then, I can’t stop thinking about them, and it’s pretty distracting.” He looked up at his younger brother’s face, trying to reassure Papyrus that he was fine.

Instead, the taller skeleton’s head was tilted thoughtfully to the side. “I met my soulmate at that party too,” came out as a mutter.

Sans froze. “You did?”

“Yes, I did, but xe’re not taking over my brain. Maybe you should try texting yours.”

“I don’t have their number,” Sans deflected. “Or any way to contact them.” It was just an excuse. He didn’t feel as though any reason he’d have to bother them would be an adequate use of their time, and tried to ignore once more the sinking feeling in his nonexistent stomach that reminded him that Frisk deserved better.

“Well, alright, but you’re going to need to get up and actually do things today.” One of Papyrus’ hands rested on his hip.

“Yeah, you ‘fish,’ bro.” If Sans’ grin could get any wider, it would have, whereas Papyrus’ fists were now clenched and he was glaring at Sans. “Kidding, bro, I ‘shore’ ‘whale.’

Papyrus almost seemed to be leaking steam like a kettle almost at boiling. “Oh my god… I’m leaving.” Sure enough, the door closed loudly behind him, and Sans repositioned himself on the couch, hands folded across his chest, thinking.