You had done it. You freed the monsters.
(Again,) Chara whispered waspishly inside your head.
But it would be the last time. There would be no more resets. No more pacifist runs. No more genocide runs. You had a plan to stop it. You would make sure that the monsters would have their happy ending.
(Even at the price of your life?)
Especially at the price of your life. You were tired. Chara was tired. You just couldn’t do it anymore. The monsters you had freed weren’t your monsters. Not anymore. It was hard to love someone you had seen killed over and over again. It was hard to love someone who would forget about you. Eventually you learned not to love at all. You went through the Underground with apathy, whether pacifist or genocide route. Sure, you... sort of cared for them. In a distant way. But it was more the remnants of a bond that had long since soured.
(If that's what you want to call it. I won't mention any names, but one in particular is pretty crushed to the bones.) You grimaced. That... wasn't something you wanted to think about right now. You had long ago accepted that your relationship with Sans would never recover, even if you found a way to fix the resets. There was too much... bad blood (dust?) between you.
Blood and dust that Chara had spilt.
(but that wasn't true, you were lying, lying, too guilty, too ashamed-)
You had hated them in the beginning, for everything that they had destroyed, for the horrific things they had made you do. (you let them, you accepted it, you followed them-!) But now you felt kinship. What you felt, they eventually felt. You two had been through so much together. It was hard not to bond with someone who had been with you for a long long time. Time that passed so differently with the resets. You still looked like a child, even after what felt like years, but you had changed inside.
After everything, it's no longer you.
But soon 'you' wouldn't even exist. Everything would stop and the monsters would finally get their happy ending.
(Are you sure Frisk? We could always do this a different way.)
And even though they said that, you could hear the tiredness in their voice. They wanted to die as much as you did. You wondered if your apathy and depression had eventually bled into them, had caused them to deteriorate alongside you, but they always tried to assure you that this wasn't your fault. It was the resets, the monsters, their own fault.
"It’s okay. It’s okay Chara. We’ll do this together," you whispered, determined to see this through.
And if you heard them whisper a thank you, well, you weren’t going to say anything.
You had just told Toriel that you had places to go. In the beginning, when you were trying to find out if not going with her would change anything, you had felt angry at how easily she left you. How she never asked why. How, when you tried it again to see if she would say something different, she never tried to stop you. But eventually you accepted it. She would never react differently. She would never say anything else. You watched as she descended the mountain, never looking back. Soon, you were alone.
(How do you want to do it?)
"I don’t want to throw myself off the cliff if that’s what you’re asking." (not yet, only if this didn't work, if you had to try again)
You peered down the edge. It was dizzying.
(Alphys has pills. Undyne has bleach. Papyrus has rope. There’s a knife somewhere near Asgore’s place. And Toriel has the flowers. Take your pick.)
"…Which do you think would be best?"
(…It depends. None of them are gonna be pretty or particularly quick. They're... all gonna hurt Frisk.)
"I think I'm used to a little pain by now."
(blood and guts and snow and bones and gore and dust and pain pain pain)
(Yeah I... suppose so. If... you're really sure Frisk. Rope and pills are the quickest if you do it right. If you want to really suffer then use the bleach or the knife. Of if you want to be poetic, use the flowers.) You felt a touch of cold amusement from Chara and gave them a humourless smile in return.
"How do you think they would react if they realized I died the same way at the first fallen human?" A small, nasty part of you wanted to do it that way, wanted to make Toriel and Asgore know that they failed their child again, that they lost them the same way they lost their precious Chara.
(I don't know. Badly? Wonder if it'd drag up some deja vu.)
You were tired of being someone else's ghost.
"...I think I’ll use the pills," you said after a while. Better to let dead dogs lie.
Chara's callous treatment of the monsters had never quite sat right with you, even after you stopped bothering to care too much about them. There was hatred there that you never quite understood, and probably never would. They didn't want to tell you what their reasons were, and you weren't going to press.
"…Should I write a note?"
(…Yeah. Just… A short one.)
"Asgore has that diary we could use. And Alphys is sure to have a pen."
(Let’s do that then.)
Taking one last look at the fading sunset, you turned around and headed back to the opening of the Underground, carefully making your way inside. You knew that you had to be careful in order to dodge any monsters leaving the Underground. Thankfully most were attempting to pack up all of their stuff before they left. You managed to quickly rip out a blank page from Asgore’s diary, before hurrying on to Hotland. Though there were some problems with you getting through the Core and Resort, you eventually managed to get to the lab. The emptiness was unusual to the bustle outside, and you resolved yourself to be in and out as quickly as possible.
"Do you have any idea where she might keep the pills?" You asked, shoving open a drawer.
(Try her bedside table. Or her desk.)
You stepped onto the escalator and headed up to Alphys’ room. You grabbed a pen from her work table, trying to avoid moving the blueprints sitting there. You hurried along and quickly searched her bedside table. Grasping onto a bottle shaped form, you tugged it out and read the label.
'Only take 1 pill every 8 hours. Any more can lead to disorientation, vomiting, nausea, headaches and/or falling down.'
(…You wanna take them here?)
No, you knew Alphys would be back to get her stuff from the lab and you... didn't want her to find you like that. She had gone through enough with the True Lab without adding your decaying body on top of it.
Let her suffer, something in you whispered, let her see you lying there bloated, make her pay for everything she's done.
You bit your lip.
"…No. Let’s… Let’s go to Waterfall. I think I’d like to… take them there."
It was peaceful, quiet and beautiful in a haunting way. Plus you had made... some good memories there with Undyne.
('C'mon punk! I got a pot of spaghetti with our names on it, and we ain't gonna let it go to waste are we!' She tossed you in the air before catching you and placing you with a strange gentleness onto her back. 'Walking's for losers! And you may be a punk, but you're not a loser kiddo!')
You wondered what she would think if she knew what you were going to do.
You didn't want to know.
Pocketing the pill bottle and pen, you took the escalator down to the exit and headed to the beginning of Hotland.
(You know you could have just taken the boat, right?)
"I want to get a glass of water. I don't really fancy drinking river water, do you?" It was almost easy to pretend to be nonchalant, as though they weren't so unhappy with their life that they were going to take themself out of it.
Unfortunately, several monsters were crowding around the water cooler, most of them carrying bags and other possessions. You guessed that these monsters were from Waterfall or Snowdin and had desperately needed to take a break. Surprisingly however, Monster Kid was there; eagerly talking to a couple you guessed were their parents. And it appeared they had just noticed you.
“Hey Frisk! What are you doing here?” They asked enthusiastically, garnering the attention of the monsters around you. They began to thank you, hug you and chatter happily to you, while you tried to edge closer to the water cooler.
“Oh! Did you need a drink? Here!” Monster Kid scampered up to the water cooler and tried to grab a cup, despite their own lack of arms.
“Um… A little help?” They asked and you gave a soft smile. You walked up to it, grabbed the glass and quickly poured yourself some water.
“So… What are you doing here? I would have thought you would be up there!”
You explained that you wanted to visit the different places in the Underground one last time.
“Oh! That makes sense I guess! Well, I don’t want to hold you up any longer! See ya up there!” Your smile turned sad, but you nodded anyway.
Unlike you, they were still a kid. It was... nice to see them one last time.
You said your goodbyes and headed towards the River Person, who like always seemed to know exactly when you needed them.
“Care for a ride?” You nodded, and they moved forward to make some room. “Where will we go today?”
You noticed how they didn't hum their usual tune, but shook it off. They were probably preoccupied with something else, or maybe just not in the mood to sing today. You told them that you would like to go to Snowdin. They nodded and you clambered into the boat, careful not to drop your cup of water. The River Person began to row, and the boat was quickly speeding through the tunnels in the direction of Waterfall. Soon, they began speak, carefully, gently.
“I wonder if this is your end, little human. I'm afraid don’t quite know.” You froze, but River Person didn’t elaborate. They just continued to steer through the water. They didn't speak another work for the rest of the trip, leaving you to wonder what they had meant, if they knew anything about what you planned.
Soon enough you both arrived at the Snowdin docking station.
“Come again soon. Or maybe not, depending on how things turn out.” You quickly turned away and swallowed. You could feel their eyes on you as you began to leave the area.
(Just ignore them. They’re always saying cryptic things.)
You hurried along through the Snowdin Town, ducking away and hiding from the bustling monsters packing up their things. It wouldn't be good if one of them saw you and reported it back to the others later. The less people who saw you, the better.
(Why did you go to Snowdin?) Chara piped up suddenly, and you shrugged.
"It’s easier to walk to the place where… where I’ll take the pills," you explained hesitantly.
"The bench. Where the abandoned quiche was. It's... private and out of the way. Plus there are no... cameras."
The entrance to Waterfall was empty, most of the monsters having either gone back to their homes in Snowdin or Waterfall. Sans’ sentry station was abandoned. You passed it without a glance. You trudged through the cold water, grasping at your jumper to keep you warm. Once you finally got to the other side, you continued onward to the room where the Bridge Seeds were stored.
The bridge was easily created, with each Bridge Seed carefully put into place. You watched apathetically as they sprouted, and gave you a way to the room where the quiche had been. You swallowed heavily when you saw the bench and padded over towards it. With a trembling hand, you touched the cold wood softly. Sitting yourself down next to the echo flower, you placed your cup of water on the ground and pulled out the paper and pen.
(You could just talk to the echo flower.)
"I don’t… I’m not sure how long the message would last. That and everything wouldn’t fit."
Chara didn't respond.
Your hands were shaking as you smoothed the paper, and uncapped the pen.
‘Dear all, I’m sorry it has to be this way-‘
No. No that won’t work. You carefully scribbled it out.
‘To everyone; by the time you read this, I probably won’t be here anymore-‘
You felt something cold run down your cheeks. You lifted your hands to our face and gently rubbed your eyes.
"...What...? Why am I... crying?" You whispered quietly, trying not to activate the echo flowers. You didn't want whoever found you to hear this.
(…I cried too when I did it. It’s… It’s a hard process. It isn’t easy to take your own life.)
(You’re saying goodbye. You're about to die. That’s why. I think you can afford some tears.)
"But I should be happy! I-I should be overjoyed that I- we are going to die! Permanently!" You argued back, confused and upset at your own sadness.
You could almost see Chara smile sadly at you.
(It doesn’t change the fact that it’s going to be over.)
You dropped the pen and brought your hands to your face.
"I want this though! I-I want to die!"
(It’s okay to be afraid Frisk. I was.)
A sob built up in your chest, and you hunched your back.
"But that was different! I’m not allowed to be afraid! I deserve to die!" You choked out, desperate to stop the heaving cries that were trying to escape your throat.
(No-one deserves to die Frisk. Least of all you. Now let it out. You'll feel better.)
You let out a keen wail, dug your fingernails into your skin and curled into a ball. Your sobs grew louder as they echoed against the glimmering walls around you. Your chest heaved and grew tight, and you vaguely noticed that you knocked your glass of water over. Your crying grew hysteric while you hugged yourself tighter.
(It’s okay Frisk. It’s okay. I’m here. I'll always be here. No matter what. The others might leave you, might forget you, but I won't. Ever.)
Your sobs became slower, and soon you were no longer making as much noise. You were still weeping, but it had grown quieter. Subdued.
Soon the tears stopped flowing, and you wiped your eyes and stood up from where you had sat down.
You picked up the pen and finished your note. It was shorter than you had imagined, with barely any explanation other than there was nothing for you left here, you had done your job and now you were going to do what you had originally tried to do before you entered the Underground.
Grabbing the fallen cup, you walked up to the water and refilled it.
Guess you would be drinking that river water after all.
You turned back around and sitting robotically on the bench. You brought out the pill bottle, set your cup down and shook out a handful of the small round pills. Shoving them in your mouth, you grabbed the water and took a swig. You harshly swallowed, trying to ignore the burning pain in your throat from swallowing too much at once. You repeated the process until the bottle was almost empty. Your stomach churned.
You felt sick and sleepy at the same time. The bottle rolled out of your hand, while the cup fell to the floor, as you leaned back against the backrest. With lazy eyes, you watched the water flow softly, your breathing slowly getting heavier.
“Goodnight… I’m sorry…” You whispered quietly, your eyes fluttering shut.
You didn’t hear Chara’s last words to you. You were drifting off, the clenching pain in your stomach slowly numbing.