Actions

Work Header

Killing Games and Painted Strings

Chapter Text

 

(Error’s point of view)

I awake, staring up at the stars that seem to be shifting and turning. The colorful, never-ending, sparkling abyss of stars stares back. It makes me sick. I stay still, laying there for what seemed an eternity. 

After a while, I fell back asleep. Again, I woke up, this time to the feeling of a slightly sticky substance being painted onto my cheek. I snap my head up, glaring at the perpetrator in the now blinding light.

The person has a stupid grin on his face. He looks really dumb. He has a paint stain on his cheek, which he could not have easily gotten on accident. He holds a paintbrush in his left hand that was covered in different colors of paint, which didn’t really make sense to me. The guy blinks, taking a second look at me, and laughs. When he blinked, somehow, his eyes… change. His eyes change from a green hourglass shape and a yellow circle to a blue heart and a purple teardrop. 

I blink as he laughs, presumably at me. I glare more, which makes him laugh harder.

“Who the hell are you?” I ask, already being by this weirdo’s mere presence.

He laughs once again, proceeding to say, “Why, I’m Ink, of course! The Ultimate Flutist! Could you not tell by all the stains? Wait those are paint- Anyway, hiya! What’s your name? You look weird. What’s with all your weird glitches?-“ I stare in total silence as this aggravating prick just… rambles for like ten minutes. “-Anyway are these yours? They’re cute.” He has on my glasses. Which, apparently, he had taken. They were just in my pocket.

“Wow, you can’t see for shit, can ya bud? Everything’s really blurry while also being really sharp. What the fuck dude? Get surgery or something. Wait that's expensive- There’s also like an inch of glass here- Are you okay? You look really fucking mad.”

I snatch my glasses back from his face that receives a whiny “Hey!!” and put them back in my pocket. I shove one of my hands in my pocket and point at him as well as sneer at this irritating little twerp. “Listen here you. You bothersome, ominously joyful, ill-mannered creep!-“

“Hey, creep?? I’m not a creep-“ 

“Yes you are- Don’t interrupt me! That wasn't the meanest thing I said! And don’t steal my glasses!-“

“Why? You’re not using them.”

“Argh! Shut up!!” At this point, I’ve become so mad that my glitches had taken over my face and I couldn’t see. I couldn’t see his stupid, dumb, idiot face but I would bet my life that he was smirking. 

That asshole.

But… I couldn’t shake the feeling of something more behind this… character. Something about the way he talks doesn’t exactly seem innocent. 

When my glitches finally went away, which also covered my ears at that point, there were more people in front of me. There was another guy with white hair, with one blue eye showing while his other was covered with his hair. He wore all white, except for a red scarf wrapped around his neck. Now, him, I knew.

Geno. 

He was none other than the Ultimate Nurse. And one of my brothers. I had always looked up to him, specifically in this situation. He kneeled over me, checking my face for injuries, and looking me over for any signs of me being hurt. I roll my eyes at him and he glares at me. The other person, also kneeling over me, was his boyfriend, Reaper, the Ultimate Necromancer. When I start to hear properly, I heard him joking about how if I was dead, he could revive me. I shoot him a glare, and he just grins back. I get up, sick of both of them, but Geno pulls me back down. 

“Geno, I’m fine.

“No, you’re not. You’re glitching again! Damnit, Error, if you don’t stay down I will get Reaps to hold you down for me,” is the response I got as I tried to get up again, along with a snicker from the cloaked skeleton next to him.

I roll my eyes again, starting to get sick of the babying my older brother does. I’m uninjured overall, but for some reason, he keeps making sure, over and over, that I’m fine, which I am. Reaper keeps making fun of me while I glare at him, which does not seem to phase him, surprisingly. When Geno is finally done inspecting me, I get up and go to explore. I see that there are a couple other people around me. Before I pay any attention to them, I notice why the stars were shifting that night. 

We’re in the middle of the fucking ocean. 

 

Chapter Text

My shock is probably showing on my face. 

What in the fuck .

The stupid, fluffy-haired guy, who claimed to be an ultimate, from earlier, is laughing in the corner as he stares at my face. Geno looks rather confused, and his stupid partner was just shrugging, throwing an arm around him. 

My shock turns to anger. And I think I throw a tantrum. Ink is still laughing.

 

The next thing I know, I wake up on the floorboards again. The ultimate nurse, necromancer, and flutist are all standing over me, as well as someone else, whom I have to blink to make sure he’s really here.

I groan.

Drat- why are you here, of all people? Could we NOT have gotten someone else? I’d be happy with the Funking- what was he again? Ultimate Fanboy. But of COURSE, we got stuck with YOU.

I point accusingly at the figure, thinking that this was somehow his fault.

“Aw, you’re not excited ta see ya, little bro? I thought ya’d be GLAD ta see me. We are stranded out here, yo, might as well be with your brothers, right, broseph?” 

FUNK off, Fresh, mister ‘Ultimate 90s boy’.” 

I did air quotes.

Of course, it had to be him. I mean just- of course! I’m cursed. I’m stuck out in the middle of the ocean with people I don’t like and people who don’t like me. With both of my brothers. And that Reaper creep. And the guy who keeps making fun of my glasses. I mean, at least I don’t have it as bad as-

My thoughts are interrupted by a loud crash, and a sweet voice’s cry out for its twin.

All of us look over.

Speak of the devil.

The Ultimate Bad Luck, which I’m surprised is even a talent, and the Ultimate Luck. Twins named Nightmare and Dream.

Nightmare, currently, is the one being crushed under the door that fell off of its hinges. 

Dream is the one trying to save his poor brother from the door. 

I recognize all of the others. From magazines. From TV. From school, even.

Blue, the Ultimate Hero. 

Fell, Ultimate Pun Master (not sure how that’s an ultimate).

Lavender, also known as Lav, the Ultimate Gardener.

The trio of most likely insane ones, Dust (arsonist), Horror (conspiracy theorist) and Killer (assassin).

Sci, the ultimate scientist. 

Outer, the ultimate astronomer, who is currently freaking out about something with Sci.

And finally, Cross. The Ultimate Knight.

And my worst enemy. 

He sees me. He glares. I glare back.

Ink hops in between us, grinning like an idiot still.

The fluffy artist I also start to recognize. Not from television or anything, he just… seems familiar. I mean, I don’t really watch any orchestra or band things, but… maybe he was in one of my classes? 

He does hop over to Dream and Blue, who are currently trying to save Nightmare. Maybe they’re all friends? Maybe that’s how I recognize him?

Blue’s reaction and Dream’s reaction told me yes.

They, after helping Nightmare not die, hugged him and they babbled together. Nightmare, all the while, looking very confused and done with life, the universe, and everything. Which, the answer to was 42. 

I shook my head. What in the world was that about?

I look over to Fresh and Geno, when, suddenly, the ground shakes.

Something bursts out of the floor. 

Lav, a relatively peaceful soul, looks horrified.

It’s a giant, smiling… flower?

Chapter Text

Everyone stares and nobody knows what to do.

Nobody makes a sound.
Until the something speaks.

It has this horrid, high-pitched screechy-like sound in the background of its voice. It’s like rusty gears grinding without oil. It’s the worst.

But it speaks anyway. Or, tries to. 

It… coughs?

Rust flies everywhere, and Lav, who looks pretty confused, now has bits of metal in his fluffy, natural jacket.

There’s some in Cross’s coat.

And Ink’s hair.

And a bunch of bits on my glasses.

I hadn’t realized I was wearing those- huh. 

After the thing coughs, it’s voice changes.

It has a sweeter voice now. It’s softer, and the gears have stopped grinding.

“Hiya! I’m Flowey. Flowey the flower! But, I expect most of you already know that.” 

It starts bobbing up and down. The petals dance, sparkling a bit. It winks.

“It’s nice to meet you all!” 

It has a two-toned face.

One black side with a red eye, with an evil smile.

One white side with a black eye, with a non-evil smile. Wouldn’t describe it as nice…

We stare.

The thing… snarls.

“What, no hello back? How rude! I even invited you here, on my boat!”

“Yes, uh, hi- I have a question: Where in the FUNK are we?”

Everyone turns to look at the person who spoke. It’s none other than the Ultimate Flutist. 

His hands are on his hips and he’s doing that really sassy, kind of gay pose. He looks like an angry mom. 

The flower laughs. 

“Why, you’re on a cruise of course! To where, you’ll probably never know! However, before we actually get started, let’s set down a few rules, students!”

Its face, which I now notice is actually a screen, turns into a weird, stylistic thing. It shows a couple of rules as the same creepy voice reads them out loud.

“Rule one! Students may only reside ON the boat. You may not get off of the boat. Getting off the boat is an unacceptable use of your time!”

The students, meaning all of us, blink.

“Rule two! Nighttime is from 10 pm to 7 am! You are allowed to leave your rooms, but you can’t go swimming or do specific things after dark. Please exercise caution around these areas!” 

“Wait, what type of cruise is this? Why are we students?”

The words come out of my mouth before I realize I had had the question or interrupted the “teacher” in the first place.

The rules go away, and it shoots me a smile.

“Well, Error, this is the killing school cruise!”

Everyone goes silent. Eventually, someone speaks.

It’s Dream, the sweet little twin with the trait of good luck.

“Did… you say killing game?” 

The entire deck erupts in questions. 

“What the funk??”

“Do we have to KILL each other?”

“Can I go home?” 

“Why do the words ‘killing’ and ‘game’ go together in your mind?”

The flower shouts.

“Alright, quiet! QUIET! If you listen to the rules, I’ll explain it!”

We all go silent. I’ve been nonverbal for about a minute now.

“Good. Now-“ Its face switches back to the rules. “-rule three! You’re allowed to go almost anywhere on the ship, with a couple of restrictions here and there!

Rule four! Violence against me or any of the cameras, technology or anything along those lines will be punished.

The deck was still silent.

“Well, now for the fun rules!”

It winks.

“Rule 5! Anyone who kills another student and gets away with it will be free to go back to their home and family! Let’s call these students the blackened!

Rule 6! In order to get away with the murder, you must pass the class trial. Once the body is discovered, we’ll start the class trial soon after! All students must look for clues.

Rule 7! Rules may be added later at my discretion! All these rules and more can be found on the tablets that should be found in your pockets!”

The flower smiles again, rules disappearing once again as we all check our pockets to find the tablets.

“Any questions?” 

Chapter Text

The Ultimate Flutist raises his hand.

Oh, god, please, please don’t, you’re gonna get us all killed.

“Yes, In-“

“What the fuck? You expect us, who are all high school students, to kill each other? I barely know what the fuck I’m gonna do in my own life. And you’re telling us to kill.

“Yep! That’s the whole game! Now, all of you go to your-“

“Okay, uh, absolutely not. What even are you? Why us of all people?”

“All of you. Go. Now.”

Dream grabs his friend by the scarf, dragging him off to the rooms before he gets all of us killed. Good job, Dream. 

I sigh as I follow after them, going to my room like the rest of them. I mean, I guess he just wants us to go there to think about this all, right?

Oh my god.

When I step into my room, my breath stops. 

It’s practically my dream room.

There’s a whole ton of yarn, all different sizes and colors, lined up perfectly on the wall. A whole ton of different crocheting needles, all aligned with the size of yarn that it goes to. It’s… a brilliant sight to say the least.

Besides the yarn, there’s a comfy-looking hammock made of sturdy blue yarn with one or two fluffy pillows on it.

In the midst of all this perfectly organized, wonderful room, there’s one other fact.

It’s completely white.

And mostly empty.

And I love it.

Are all the others’ rooms their dream one…?

A smile crawls onto my face, and I go over to the yarn, grabbing a needle and, deciding just to use my own strings, lay down on the hammock. Well, even in this situation, the best thing I can do is just try to zone out, as I always do, and crochet. 

Before I know it, I’m asleep.

 

Ding dong, ding!

Dang, what time is it?

“Attention all students, please meet on the deck, it’s time for the first motivation!”

Motivation…?

I pry myself off of the hammock, put down my supplies, and snap back to reality.

Ah, right… Motivation to kill, probably. That makes sense.

I glance around my room once more, sigh, and run off to the deck.

Chapter Text

The deck had everyone waiting there, except that stupid flutist that almost got himself killed. As soon as I noticed he was gone, he came running from the door. And knocked me over. Once again.

“Oh- sorry! I wasn’t looking where I was going!”

Ink held out a hand to help me up. I rolled my eyes and got up on my own.

He gave me a dejected look. 

We all turned our attention to the giant flower. That, might I add, nobody liked. It creeped people out. It was rusty, old and would have looked cool if it was in one of those photos of nature taking over cities again, but it wasn’t. 

So it was dumb. 

But, alas, it spoke. 

“Welcome, students! It’s time for the first motive- the first reason to kill!” 

Ink had now gone over to his friend, Dream, who looked like he was about to throw up. He probably was.

“Will all of you check your handbooks?”

We all did. 

There was a new tab called “secrets”. 

I tapped it, as did everyone else. It had two sections. Your Secret and Someone Else’s.

Mine read, “Your secret is that you have surges of uncontrollable anger and strings that could be easily used to stop a victim in his tracks. Your secret is held by Ink.”

Ink got mine- of fucking course.

Well, I guess the theme of the secrets was how the person could easily kill, or how you could frame someone. 

The Someone Else’s tab said, “Ink grew up in a circus. He trained on many different acts.”

Well, I guess it was fair play. Pairs got each other’s secrets. He could murder pretty easily, couldn’t he? There are a ton of circus acts that could be used. 

“Oh, by the way, did I mention if nobody kills in the next two days, all your secrets will be revealed?”

Ink was the first one to respond. He shrugged. “Whatever. I don’t think my secret’s worth killing over. It’s not a big deal.”

I decided to join him.

“I don’t think mine’s worth it either. Mine’s barely a secret.”

Two others, Lav and Geno, agreed. 

“These aren’t really the best secrets. I mean, seriously, I have a whole ton of incriminating shit in my past- likely that you know, Flowey, and you decided to choose the one nobody will ever care about?”

The flower snarled at the person who I was starting to believe had more years of flute experience than brain cells. Which was… possibly accurate. Maybe.

It was most definitely true. 

“I mean, if the secrets aren’t enough, the boat will also violently toss back and forth until there’s a murder.”

At that, the ship started to shake. Lav was thrown to the ground, dragging Fresh, whom he had grabbed onto to try to not fall, with him. Ink fell, and, somehow, I had shifted to be near him. He grabbed onto my scarf and dragged me down on top him. Asshole. 

Most others stumbled, but nobody else fell.

For some wonderful, brilliant reason, my body decided this was a perfect moment to crash. 

So I did.

Chapter Text

Crashing is not fun. In the slightest.

When I came back to consciousness, I saw pretty much the same thing as last time. Except, this time, we were in my room and Ink was in the corner panicking. 

And the boat was still tossing back and forth.

Ah, great.

Was this a huge fucking mess already? Yep! 

Was I going to deal with it? Absolutely not!

I’d rather die at this point!

Like what the fuck, why me?! I’m one of the, what, sixteen people who got unlucky enough to be placed here? Why? It’s not like I have anything to hide. 

Except… maybe that.

But nothing else!

I promise!

Ok, maybe I don’t.

But why the hell did it have to be me?!

Could it NOT have been someone else? It felt like the universe was against me.

Before I knew it, and probably before I processed it, Geno and his stupid boyfriend were talking. Probably to me.

“I think he might be dead. Or he has a crush on him. He keeps staring, y'know?”

Geno waved his hand in front of my face. “Error? Are you okay?”

I pushed him out of my face, glaring. “I hate both of you.”

“Oh, I’m guessing you’re okay, then?”

“Yes.”

“That’s good to know! I’m glad you’re okay, then.” 

I grabbed a pillow and shoved it in his face.

“Ah- thanks, bro.”

“Don’t call me that.”

“Fine.”

“What happened after I crashed? And how long did I crash? It felt like it was for a while.”

“Ok, so, when you crashed, the boat rocked for a while.”

“It’s still rocking.”

“Well, because it was rocking, that dork-“ Geno pointed to Ink. “-fell on top of you again. He noticed you crashed, called me over, and now we’re here. For some reason, he decided to stay, even though he’s very obviously terrified of the room.”

“Why would he…”

Geno shrugs. “I don’t know. He probably has his reasons.”

“Maybe he’s like you and has a stupid ‘heart’ or whatever. Maybe he actually cares about people.”

“I think that's impossible.”

“True!”

I got up, moving out of the way of Reaper and my brother, and went over to the flutist sobbing in the corner.

I knelt down to get on his eye level.

“Hey. Leave.”

Ink stopped sobbing and looked up at me. 

“What?”

“I said, leave.”

He looked at me in confusion. 

“If this room makes you so uncomfortable, leave. I don’t understand why you’re staying if you’re so damn scared.”

The flutist continued to stare in shock. He blinked. Then, he smiled. He got up.

“Gotcha! I knew you weren’t completely cold.”

And then…

He left. 

And, when I wasn’t looking, Geno and Reaper left too.

And the room was empty.

Chapter Text

I ended up walking around the ship for the third time that day. 

One of the doors to a usually unopened room was ajar. I tried to look inside, but someone popped up next to me.

“What’cha doing?”

I screamed. Ink covered my mouth.

“If you’re trying to sneak around, you gotta be quiet!”

I glitched for a couple of moments, trying to shout at Ink through his hand. It wasn’t working. After a little, I calmed down. 

“If I uncover your mouth, you can’t scream.”

I glared at him as he removed his hand.

“What the hell are you doing?”

“I was gonna ask you that! Why are you sneaking around?”

“I’m not sneaking around!”

“Really? Then what are you doing?” 

“I, um- I was just walking around?”

“Then why were you looking into that door?”

Ink was sorta pinning me against the wall, pointing in my face.

“Is being curious so much of a crime?”

“Well, it kinda is in this situation! Especially with your secret.” The flutist took out his tablet and wove it. “You got mine, right? I don’t know how it was supposed to intimidate me, but I’m curious about yours!”

“You just said being curious was bad.”

“Well, your curiosity was bad. Mine’s innocent! Why’d you say that your secret wasn’t a secret? I’d be concerned, if I were you.”

“That’s not something you should care about-“

“Really? Cause I think it would be good blackmail on you.”

“Are you threatening me?”

“Maybe!” 

“What do you want?”

“Team up with me.”

I raised an eyebrow.

“I mean it! Team up with me! There’s gotta be a way out of this! I just wanna go home.”

“And threatening me is the best way to go with this?”

“Yeah, why?” 

I sighed, “nothing.”

Ink blinked.

We were silent.

“Do you wanna go in and look? This door’s probably open for a reason.”

I rolled my eyes and opened the door.

We froze, looking in shock at the sight.

There was a chime.

“A body has been found!” 

Chapter Text

Ink shrieked. And I mean, like, shrieked. Very shrilly. It hurt.

But it didn’t hurt as much as seeing Geno covered in blood with a knife through his heart. 

People came running. Footsteps hit the deck, as did I, unable to do anything but stare at the lifeless body of my (favorite) brother. 

Why did it have to be him? Of all people, the first to die was Geno, one of the most thoughtful people I knew. Someone who would have given anything to get over all his trauma and have a happy ending.

And he didn’t get it.

Minutes later, I was standing next to Ink, who was inspecting the area around the body.

Since Geno was the only nurse, we didn’t have any chance to uncover how or when he died. But we were supposed to discover who did it.

Most were silent. Scared. Terrified. Now that one of us had died, everything was… real. 

We found signs of strangulation, rope, a bunch of small pieces of fabric, and a couple of other rather insignificant evidence.

Then again, I was too distraught to pay enough attention.

Eventually, Flowey called us all to the center of the boat, waiting for all of us to be there before cheerily shouting, “It’s time to start the fun!” As the fountain split down the middle and spread out, revealing a staircase.

Ink was the first to head down.