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This time make your purpose

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This moment means everything for their future and Frisk has no idea how to handle it.

They knew enough to stop everyone from running off after they got out. They know they can’t just show up in a human town trailing monsters of various appearances. People would panic.

Chara remembers what happened to Asriel and scowls in Frisk’s head.

It is obvious Frisk has to tell somebody. Then that somebody can meet their friends and decide who to tell next because Frisk doesn’t know how that works. How it will work. Neither of them has memories of making it this far. That doesn’t mean it never happened, in another time, but... remembering has been a blessing and a curse.

The first obstacle is to find a suitable human adult to tell. There are several problems with this. Frisk doesn’t talk unless they have to. They... don’t like it. They also have no idea what the correct human adult will look or act like. Frisk has not had good experiences with human adults, but Chara’s had worse, so asking Chara to speak to one for them is out of the question.

Toriel was worried about letting Frisk go alone, but they aren’t alone, not really. Not with Chara. Sans promised to be nearby. He is the one Frisk will introduce first. If they get a violent reaction, Sans can take a shortcut and get them out of danger. And anyway, the rest of their friends are just inside the forest past the field of flowers at the base of the mountain. They aren’t far at all.

Frisk makes it to the little shelter near the road. It’s a bus stop, but it looks like it hasn’t been used in a long time. There is a town a short walk down the road in one direction and an open expanse of fields in the other. Frisk isn’t from the town. All they know is this bus stop. This is where they were left... was it really only two days ago?

They aren’t stupid. They know nobody will come. They know what a lie looks like.

They sense Chara hesitantly lean against them in their shared head. Chara still does not trust themself to comfort someone else. Some of their earlier attempts always ended in angry outbursts, even if the anger wasn’t directed at Frisk.

They sit on the bench. They can take a little break. They need to brace themself for what they have to do.

Instead, their mind just kind of blanks out. They realize they are tired. They wonder how big the Underground actually is, how far they must have walked.

Do you think Asriel has done what he needed to do? Frisk asks Chara.

Chara’s desperation to save Asriel was the reason for a portion of the RESETs after the barrier fell. Chara wanted him to come with them. Frisk wanted that too, but Asriel refused, every single time.

This time, Chara said something vague about Asriel refusing because he has something to do. Frisk didn’t push. There is a lot Chara still needs to talk about, but there is no rush (Frisk hopes there is no rush).

I don’t know, Chara replies curtly. Frisk’s thoughts are drifting, but Chara is very attuned to their senses right now, constantly scanning their surroundings for any sign of a threat. Or a human adult. The two are equivalent to Chara. Before you ask, I don’t know how long it will take him to change back, either.

Frisk goes to hold their left hand with their right – Chara is left-handed, Frisk is not, so they each tend to use their dominant arm – but Chara brushes them off. Frisk is hurt for a moment, but then they catch some of Chara’s thoughts and it’s something like might need both hands for self-defense and they understand.

The sun is almost completely down now. Two joggers and five cars have passed the bus stop. Nobody has looked at them twice.

Maybe try for someone small, Chara says. They aren’t entirely comfortable with Frisk’s silence, so they do most of the talking in their head. Someone we might be able to FIGHT off if we need to.

Chara, that’s why we have Sans keeping watch, Frisk reminds them. Chara does not reply to this. They don’t trust Sans. Frisk wants to, but they do know they can at least trust Sans to put forth the effort to make sure this goes as well as possible. After Sans and Frisk split off from everyone else, Sans told Frisk it would be great if there were no more RESETs. He said it very casually, but Frisk knows there was more to it than that.

They didn’t promise him anything, though. They couldn’t. They never had total control over the RESETs and SAVEs and LOADs. There was Chara, but... they also felt compelled, if they are being honest. As if it wasn’t just them and Chara.

Frisk’s phone buzzes. It’s a text from Toriel: Dear Frisk, I hope you are well. Papyrus has asked me to tell you he believes in you and that you should keep his lazy brother out of trouble. L-O-L!

I know this is a big job, but we know you can do it. You are very good at making friends and I have no doubt you can help us befriend the humans. Good luck!

Sincerely, Toriel

P.S. If you get hungry, do not hesitate to tell Sans.

Frisk feels a smile sneak onto their face. It’s going to be hard, but they can do it. They have people they love now, and they can do it for them.

 


 

Ha. I seriously overestimated myself this time.

I stop on the side of the road, almost wheezing. It’s no surprise that my piece-of-crap body isn’t cooperating with my attempts to get healthier, but I never thought it would be this hard.

I lean my hands on my knees, head bowed. The sun has almost set. For how bad I feel right now, it’s a good thing I decided to wait to make an attempt at running. It’s summer, if I’d gone this afternoon I would have passed out from the heat.

By the time I’ve made a dent in my body’s oxygen debt, I can stand up straight again. Too fast. My vision swims. Ugh. I guess I’m walking home.

Five minutes and I see the kid is still sitting at the abandoned bus stop. That makes my decision for me. I cross the road and jog to the bus stop. The child sees me coming from a long way off. They are perhaps nine or ten. Their gender is just as ambiguous as their race: short, straight, dark brown hair, dark olive skin, half-closed eyes, skinny.

I stop in the doorway to the shelter. The child curls up more, knees pulled up to their chest, gaze darting around, measuring the space they are in. Oh. Oh, that’s not good.

“Hi,” I say, voice soft. “I’m Isla. I live in town.” A pause. The kid just stares at me. “Do you need help?”

They (at least if or until I am corrected) stare for a while longer, then nod hesitantly.

I wait for another moment, but they don’t say anything. I walk into the shelter. The kid stiffens, but I pass them to sit on the other end of the bench. I don’t want to be right about this kid, but if I am they probably won’t volunteer much information and I can’t afford to spook them.

“What’s your name?” I ask, looking out at the road.

I count. Eight seconds pass before they speak. Their voice is quiet and slightly raspy. “I’m Frisk.”

“Frisk. How old are you?”

Another pause. They put both hands up, all fingers extended. “You’re ten?” A nod. “Are you waiting for someone here? Do you have someone nearby?”

Another nod. The kid lowers their legs and scrapes the toes of their dirty sneakers in the soil. They sit up straight and open their mouth to speak. Close it. They try again, then raise their right hand to cover their mouth.

I know what a traumatized kid looks like. I saw one in the mirror for years.

I did not specialize in children and adolescents, but I have confidence in my ability to handle this. I just need to keep in mind that kids take things more literally than adults and cannot process abstract ideas as easily.

Frisk steals a glance at me. “It’s okay, take as long as you need,” I tell them. “I’ve got time.”

I think I’m going to regret my sorry attempt at jogging tomorrow. My knees already feel swollen. Better sleep with my painkillers in case I can’t move when I wake up. That is one of the worst everyday things that can happen: waking up, realizing you’re almost in too much pain to move, then remembering you left your pain pills in the bathroom. When I lived with my parents I could just yell for one of them, or my sister, but I’ve been living on my own for almost ten years.

Well, that’s not entirely true. I stayed with my parents between semesters, but most of my college years were spent at school.

“I...” Frisk says, clearly struggling. “I have some friends who need help. We...” their voice cracks, but it seems to be from disuse, not emotion, “we need to talk to somebody. They... aren’t human.”

I blink. Must have misheard them. Their voice is quiet, after all. “I’m sorry?”

“They aren’t human. They’re... magical creatures. They call themselves monsters.”

I cock my head to one side. Alright. I’ve got a traumatized kid who uses fantasy and escapism as coping mechanisms. Or they hallucinate. I suspect they were abandoned here, because this bus stop has been abandoned for decades, according to the locals. I’ve only been here for a month.

“You don’t believe me,” they say with obvious sadness. They hunch back up, making themself small again.

“I can help you,” I reply, instead of confirming or denying their statement. “I’m willing to help, if you’ll let me.” Because I have no idea what kind of trauma this kid has been through, and if I call the cops and have them taken to a psychiatric hospital against their will that could make it so much worse. I’m not stupid. People become disconnected from reality because reality became impossible for them to deal with. The solution is to make reality easier and not harder by lying to them and locking them up and immediately drugging them up without first assessing their symptoms and the possibilities of drugless interventions.

“What if I showed you?” Frisk asks. “What if I showed you one of my friends?”

Perfect. I’ll either see nothing or it will be an animal of some sort and I can slowly draw this child back with logic and then maybe we can get somewhere. I don’t have enough information, but I don’t think I want this kid returned to whoever is legally responsible for them. There is a lot of folklore surrounding Mount Ebott. I have heard stories about bottomless pits that swallow lost travelers and beasts that shamble into town to steal children. The stories are probably utter bullshit, but everyone seems to agree that anyone who climbs the mountain never comes back down, and if everyone knows it then Frisk’s guardian or guardians were assholes for choosing to leave them here.

Frisk pulls out a phone and types something. Then they slide off the bench, slowly, watching me out of the corner of their eye. They don’t beckon me – I wait to see if they do – they just stand in the doorway of the shelter and wait for me to move on my own.

I stand and follow them when they walk behind the shelter. To my surprise, there is someone already back there. I didn’t hear them approach, but—

Slippers. This person is wearing slippers. And. And above the slippers are a tibia and fibula. Nothing else. No muscles, no tendons, no skin. And my gaze goes up and – yeah, that’s a skull. Bone with no skin on it.

I immediately begin to methodically eliminate possible explanations for what I am seeing. I pull out my phone, begin to read my latest text from my sister – I can read, not dreaming. I take my pulse – it’s normal again, despite my lung-stabbing run. No heatstroke. My arms are free of needle marks, fortunately – I never reached that point, even at my worst, but me shooting heroin still seems more likely than whatever this is. The last non-magical option is a schizophrenic break, which is unlikely, given my lack of risk factors and the fact that Frisk can see this skeleton (right?) too.

The skeleton sticks its hand out. Left hand, my note-taking brain points out. “Hi.” Deep voice. Male, then? I dunno. Obviously the laws of science don’t apply here, so why would I apply social norms? “I’m Sans. Sans the skeleton.”

Um. He wants a handshake, right? But what if an outstretched hand during a first meeting means something else for skeletons? What if I unknowingly commit a faux pas?

Too damn bad. I don’t think I can be blamed for not knowing skeleton social norms. I reach out with my left hand to accept the handshake.

As soon as he grips my hand, a drawn-out, wet fart noise breaks the awkward silence. Frisk instantly scowls at him.

“Sorry,” he says, dropping his hand to reveal a small whoopee cushion in his palm, not sounding sorry at all. “Couldn’t resist.”

He’s grinning, but he’s been grinning since I rounded the corner. Hasn’t stopped. I decided not to carry weapons when I went for my run (if I run again. This was an experiment, and my body protested very loudly). If someone else is going to hurt you on a jog, you’re most likely to get hit by a car, and what good is a pocketknife against that?

I usually feel safe enough with just the knowledge that I can incapacitate someone with my hands, but I don’t know if that’s true here. This is a skeleton and he doesn’t have lungs, right, so I couldn’t choke him out. Actually, does he have a brain? Is it possible to knock him unconscious? He obviously has bones I could break, but I don’t actually know if I could break them, because from where I’m standing his tibia and fibula look a lot thicker than I know humans’ to be, what if all his bones are like that—

“Kinda shocking, I know,” Sans continues, tone very casual, like this isn’t a big deal. “So you offered to help Frisk. Real nice of ya. But, uh, I think you get the gist of why we need to talk to somebody.”

Almost forgot about the ten-year-old who is clearly very comfortable with the skeleton. It’s kind of jarring, since they acted so wary of my approach. I’m not scary, I’m five-three and one-ten, on a good day. Sans might be five inches shorter than I am – maybe less, since I get the impression that he’s slouching, not that I know what skeleton posture is supposed to look like – but he’s wide. I have muscle and skin and vital organs and a bunch of other squishy body stuff I’m assuming he doesn’t have, but even if I’m denser than he is, he’s bigger than me, and I have no idea how to take him down.

But I probably shouldn’t assume I’ll have to take him down. Frisk, who came off as a scared kid when it was just them and me, is far more relaxed now and appears more concerned than afraid. Concerned about my reaction. Sans has not done anything objectively threatening, since I’m not about to count showing up because I’m not some closed-minded prick who automatically hates people who are different from me, even though defying the fucking laws of science is about as different as you can get.

“This is a prank, right?” is what comes out of my mouth. “You got a camera crew hiding somewhere?”

Frisk shakes their head. “Nah,” Sans replies. He pushes up a sleeve of his hoodie and offers his arm to be inspected. “I’m real. See? Bare bones and all.”

I reach out and poke his radius. It’s solid. I slide my fingers in the space between his radius and ulna (I was right earlier – the gap isn’t as wide as it is for humans) fingers curling around the bone. It’s warm. That’s weird. Right? I don’t know the rules that apply here.

So. This is officially Real. Or at least Real For Now. I’ve never hallucinated sober before, but I don’t think I’m hallucinating, which leaves Real. So I should act like this is really happening, because it probably is, which means I’m actually groping a stranger’s arm to ascertain the veracity of the statements of an androgynous ten-year-old.

I thought me going for a jog was as weird as today would get, but. Proven wrong.

“Okay,” I say, pulling my hand back. I’m mostly numbed out from shock, but there is a part of me that wants to get a biology textbook and get the skeleton out of his clothes so I can diagram the differences in structure. Another part of me wants to be therapist for Frisk because their fear of me is an enormous red flag.

...I never actually told Sans my name. Might be a good place to start. “Um,” I say instead. Come on, brain. “I’m Isla. I live in town. I, uh... need more information before I figure out what I can do to help, but...” Fuck it. “Actually, I need to sleep on this. So you can both crash at my apartment for tonight, and tomorrow, after my joints are done yelling at me for my pathetic attempt at a run, we can talk like adults who have no idea what the hell is going on, because I have no idea what the hell is going on.”

Frisk looks inappropriately delighted at the swearing, which is weird because I usually have a great mouth-filter. There are tiny white lights in Sans’s eyesockets, I realize. Pupils? He blinks. He’s been blinking. He blinks, how does his bone-face do that...

“Great,” Sans says lightly. “There are, uh, more of us.”

“Right.” Someone unhooked my mouth from my brain. “I suppose you’ve got a living scarecrow or jack-o-lantern, too. How many?”

Frisk points one finger at Sans, two fingers at themself, then tacks on five more before holding their hands out.

“Alright,” I agree without really thinking about my apartment’s spatial compatibility with eight... people. “Sure.”

There is a sudden awkward silence. Sans keeps looking at my twitching fingers. Frisk nudges him. Sans looks at the child and apparently they can communicate like that because the skeleton turns back to me and says, “Do you want... to see some magic? Would that help?”

I must be obviously struggling. “Um,” I say. “No. No, I don’t think so. Maybe tomorrow. If you’re still there.” If I haven’t gone totally nutters. My brain can be a little... unreliable. Even so, I can usually pinpoint triggers, and I can’t think of anything that might have brought this on.

“So, uh,” I articulate, “Where are your... friends?"

 


 

It goes well, considering.

None of them had any idea of what to expect – well, perhaps Toriel and Asgore did, but neither of them shared. They were the tensest out of the six monsters, even compared to Alphys, who gets nervous over everything. An attack would have been the worst possible reaction, but running and screaming would have been a close second. This human went directly into shock, which is fine. Not ideal, but Sans knows better than to expect ideal. He knows better than to be optimistic at all.

She hesitates but ultimately agrees to follow them just into the woods, where Sans gladly lets Toriel take over. He isn’t sure he likes the knowledge that everything he does actually matters now. He craved it during the loops, wanted nothing more for time to stop turning back, and now that it has, he isn’t sure how he’s supposed to feel or react. He wants to keep doing as little as possible and kinda hates himself for wanting that.

One thing he definitely has to do is tell Toriel about Frisk’s behavior. The kid was fearless wandering through the Underground, but they almost acted scared of this other human. Sans half-expected Frisk to trot right up to the first human they saw and explain things, but they waited for someone to approach them. None of that can mean anything good.

During introductions, the human (Isla, right? He can work with that. Vision puns shouldn’t be too hard) stops them almost immediately and, expression deadpan, apologizes and asks if she’s supposed to bow or something because she doesn’t possess the social script for this situation. Toriel, naturally, immediately dismisses that suggestion and requests that she simply address everyone by their names. Asgore has no protests, but Asgore always kinda disliked decorum. He preferred walking around and getting to personally know his subjects to waiting in the throne room for people to report to him. Hell, even when he did wait in the throne room, he was always gardening.

Isla makes exactly zero promises after Toriel provides the general explanation as to why they were under the mountain and why they are here now. Sans couldn’t see Frisk’s soul color until he fought Frisk – no. He didn’t fight Frisk. Not this time. And even in the other times, he has doubts that was Frisk—

But that’s a tangent. He cannot see the color of a human’s soul unless he fights them or draws it out for some other purpose. No one can. Sans can see other things (LV and EXP, for example) more easily than others can. Almost all monsters can sense if someone has malicious intent towards them. Papyrus can’t. Sans loves his brother more than anything, but damn if a little cynicism wouldn’t have saved his life in some timelines.

But the fact that his brother sees the good in everyone and wants everyone to be great like him is why Sans loves him so much. He doesn’t need to change, ever, and Sans would be lying if he said he wasn’t worried about the impact surface life and humanity might have on Papyrus’s idealism.

The human reacted okay to his brother. An initial wariness – she actually flinched at his volume – and then a small smile. It’s only a short interaction, but she takes his childlike innocence into account without talking down at him.

He can’t see her soul color, but he’s pretty sure he already knows what it is. He’s good at guessing that sort of thing.

While Toriel gives a brief overview of magic and its capabilities, Sans glances at Frisk. They see the look and come to stand by him.

“I’m lacking that sense of déjà vu,” Sans says quietly, so no one else hears. “How ‘bout you, kiddo?”

Frisk tenses up and shakes their head.

“So we’ve never made it this far before?”

A shrug. They don’t know either. Sometimes knowing about the timelines without actually knowing what happened in different ones was beyond frustrating. Sometimes Sans had the sense to acknowledge that if he had that knowledge, real memories, he probably wouldn’t want them. He doesn’t want some of what he already (and now irreversibly) knows even though it’s better that someone knows and it’s better that someone is him.

Frisk leans towards him and wraps him in a side-hug. “I can’t say for sure, but I think it’s over,” they say. They pull back before Sans remembers to put an arm around them or pat their back or something. Shit, did he really forget how hugging works? That’s sad.

He tries to salvage it by squeezing Frisk’s shoulder. They shoot him a smile like they know this physical affection thing isn’t something he does often. Then he realizes that maybe they do know that and he almost sighs. “I hope so, kid. I really hope so.”

 


 

So my brain isn’t retaining information like it should.

I don’t have a near-eidetic memory anymore. I lost that after the PTSD caused my amygdalae to swell and my hippocampi to shrink to eighty percent of their original size. But I still have a damn good memory compared to the general human population and I’ve asked Toriel to repeat herself three times now. Is this what stupid people feel like? I really hope it’s the shock and my intelligence comes back soon. It’s kind of the only thing I’ve got going for me.

I had an oh shit moment when I saw everyone and I realized Sans is a lot smaller than some other... monsters, I guess. His brother’s almost seven feet tall and Undyne and Toriel both hover around seven-and-a-half feet. Asgore easily clears eight even without taking the horns into account. He looks like he’d be capable of tearing apart a car with his bare hands (and horns), let alone a human.

Only Alphys and Sans are shorter than I am and they still both have more mass than me. Well, maybe not in Sans’s case, but I’m not willing to bet on that. He looks thick, with the clothes, but Papyrus’s attire makes it obvious they really are just skeletons. Skeletons with a handful of weird magical quirks, yeah, but when it comes to body parts I’m used to, they’ve just got bones.

When Frisk saw Toriel, they immediately ran to her and hugged her. She smiled down at them with something like maternal affection, though I couldn’t be sure. I’m obviously not very good at reading the expressions and body language of creatures with snouts and horns and fins and without skin and noses and maybe I am beginning to freak out just a little bit.

It helps that these people do seem nice, though that might be more situational than indicative of their true personalities. They kind of have to be nice if they want to come out of the mountain.

Then again, Sans tainted his first impression with a fart joke. Maybe I’m reading too much into absolutely everything. That seems likely. I have some trouble separating my professional life from my personal life.

“I can call my dad,” I say. “He’s a dentist. I know he’s got at least one politician for a patient. After that... I don’t really know what they will do.”

Right then I understand it’s not going to be easy. My brain does tend to have hyper-reactions to anything that can be perceived as a threat, but once I get past that reflexive reaction, I am generally very open-minded and empathetic (it’s a job requirement). Not everyone is like that. It’s not right (convenient, but not right) to apply stereotypes to individuals, but I am under the impression that a good portion of politicians are assholes, and they will likely be the ones these monsters need to speak with.

And then there is Frisk, who is a minor. That’s going to cause some issues.

My brain moves too quickly in too short a span of time and suddenly I’m talking. “I presume the goal in the short-term is to obtain legal rights for your people. Whatever direction you go with that – whether you want to be recognized as an individual kingdom or as citizens of this country – it’s going to take a while. The magic is going to be a problem. That is the biggest reason I suspect a lot of people won’t believe you exist, and that’s an acknowledgement you need before you can do anything else. Regardless, you need a plan of what you’re going to do if it goes wrong, since I can guarantee you’re outnumbered.” As long as ‘under the mountain’ means under the mountain. Mount Ebott isn’t very big. “And none of you will be allowed to legally care for Frisk until you get rights. Instead of going into foster care, I’d expect the government would want to keep them around for questioning.”

Oh, I really touched a few nerves with that one. Frisk stiffens. Undyne scowls and says, “If ANYONE tries to take Frisk from us, I’ll punch them in the face!!” For emphasis, she smacks a closed fist into her open palm.

That’s another thing. “Assuming this works, none of you can raise a hand against a human, even to defend yourselves. Which presents a problem, because I’m sure you’ll need to.”

Papyrus looks confused, then happy. “We won’t need to defend ourselves! We just want to be FRIENDS!! I’m sure once we explain that, the humans will want to be friends too!!”

I’m not. In fact, given the option between the two, I would bet on the opposite happening, but in the short time I’ve been here I have found Papyrus incredibly likable and I don’t want to smash his happy-world fantasy.

Frisk leaves Sans’s side to go to Toriel. “I wanna stay with Mom,” they say, voice clear, if quiet. Then they turn to Asgore. “And Dad.”

Toriel looks sharply at Asgore in response to this. He drops into a crouch when Frisk nears him and wraps them in a hug. Alphys tries and fails to hide an “Awwww!” behind her hand. Frisk whispers something to Asgore that has him tearing up, which surprises me.

Toriel’s gaze softens and she turns back to me. “We understand that there will be problems integrating into human society,” she says. “We thank you for your advice and for offering to get us in contact with the people who can help us and I hate to ask more of you, but would you be willing to meet us here again tomorrow?”

“Tori?” Sans says unexpectedly. “I don’t think that—”

I cut him off before he can point out that they have no idea if I’m trustworthy, even though he would be right. “Don’t be ridiculous,” I say, which maybe I should not have said because even if she’s not insisting on being treated like a queen, that was still kind of rude. “You’re all coming back to my apartment. You need to write... something. A treaty, or something like that. You need to make plans, and you need to write them down, because there are countless situations to consider.”

I stop talking when I finally notice that Papyrus and Undyne have taken to staring at the sky. The stars are just beginning to show. The awe belongs on Papyrus’s face, but Undyne has been half-glaring at me since I walked into her line of vision and it’s kind of strange to see her looking like a toddler playing in the snow for the first time.

They aren’t the only ones, either. Asgore, still holding Frisk, stands, and Frisk points out Polaris to him. My brain latches onto near stars and distant stars and stellar parallax before I can force myself to pay attention to the body language of the people around me instead. My head does that sometimes.

Alphys is alternatively watching the sky and Undyne, for whatever reason. Toriel’s really the only one paying attention to me. She nods slowly, also looking around at her friends. “I suppose you are right,” she agrees. “Perhaps it would be wise to plan as much as we can right now.”

Her gaze keeps flicking upwards too. “We should probably wait until it’s completely dark to start walking,” I say. “Less chance of anyone seeing you.”

“Way ahead of you,” Sans says. He walks twenty feet into the flower field and promptly lies down on his back.

Papyrus marches over to him, puts his hands on his hips, and looms over him, blocking Sans’s sight of the sky. “Sans, I feel very strongly that your presentation of stargazing is merely an excuse to lie around and be lazy.”

“Nah. I’m stargazing right now, see?”

“I am in your way!”

“And you’re a real star, aren’tcha, Paps?”

Papyrus’s face does this thing that makes it look like he’s trying to smile and frown at the same time. “I still don’t approve of your puns, but you are correct to point out my very conspicuous brightness, so I will let this one slide. JUST THIS ONCE.”

Alphys is telling Undyne, “I think we’re in the Northern hemisphere, I recognize some of these constellations from b-books I’ve read,” and Frisk has fallen asleep, head on Asgore’s shoulder. He holds them one-armed and bends down to examine the flowers with his free hand. Toriel quietly sits on a half-rotted stump, glancing periodically at Frisk.

We’ve got a bit of time, so I stretch. Maybe this will deter my muscles from hating my guts in the morning.