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More to Our New Life...

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Happy 24th Birthday to me, Rachel! 

 

Waking up on my birthday was close to a fantasy; I was greeted by the smell of chocolate chip pancakes, fluffy scrambled eggs, cheesy hash browns, and buttered toast. Before I could get up to find the source, I was gently lifted and moved onto Sans lap, the skeleton and I sharing a large bed in our comfy new home.

 

The extra space was necessary at this point, seeing as not only were there three inhabitants but also because two of them didn’t want the third to hear anything inappropriate. The last thing either of us wanted was for Papyrus to call Undyne, or heaven forbid, Toriel about the screaming.

 

We had been close to having said issue, and it had only been avoided because we managed to convince Pap that it might have been part of the music he had been listening to at that time. Thanking the thicker walls and two rooms distance apart, both my skeleton monster Soul Mate and I could relax.

 

I stretched briefly, unwilling to give Sans any opportunity to tickle me. His responding chuckle was warm as he laid there, nearly unmoving.

 

“not gonna attack ya today. promise ya that, babydoll.”

 

I blew raspberries over my shoulder. He responded in a snorting laughter before pulling me in close.

 

“Sooooooo, my parents are comin’ over later. Are you gonna be nice?”

 

“am i ever not nice?”

 

“You do when you feel threatened, or when someone who care about is…”

 

He hummed, his mouth nothing more than an awkward slash across his skull. I giggled softly, turning into him and adjusting enough to fit directly under his chin. Moments later, his arms were around me and he leaned down to place a gentle smooch on my forehead.

 

“so, didja sleep well?”

 

“Yeah…oh, hey! Wanna know somethin’ cool?”

 

“whazzat?”

 

“Ever since we Soul-bonded, and since we share a bed, I’ve been sleeping so much better.”

 

His smile grew, a hint of blue dusting his alabaster cheeks.

 

“thanks, babe. that means a lot.”

 

“Well, it’s true!” I cried adamantly. “I have learned a lot about you, too. I think it’s adorable how you slur words whenever you are sleepy or just waking up. You kinda have a Bronx accent in those moments. But when you are truly awake, that all disappears.”

 

Baffled didn’t quite fit the expression on his face. “really? hmm, i never noticed. also, not sure what ya mean by Bronx accent.”

 

“Let me see if I do one so ya know what I mean.” I cleared by throat. “Ayyyyyy! Fuhgeddaboutit! Bada-bing-bada-boom!”

 

After my demonstration, I was fully flushed, hands covering my face, listening as Sans guffawed loudly.

 

“Gawwwwd, that sounded awful! I’m sorry…I was putting it on too thick! Those were some famous quotes from movie, and I thought…”

 

“that was adorable!” He snickered loudly. “oh, what a treat.” Snort. “i need to tell the others about this ‘bronx’ stuff. wanna know their opinion.”

 

“Please don’t! Ugh! I’m so embarrassed!”

 

“yeah, yer face it all red. and i know one way to make that red darker.”

 

Suddenly, the sound of static filled the air and I heard my voice doing the demonstration. I whipped around and saw the cell phone, the recording playing.

 

“YOU ASSHOLE!” I tried to grab the phone.

 

“nope. i’m keepin’ that.”

 

“You show that to anyone and I will murder you!”

 

He chuckled lightly. “a’right, i promise not to show anyone. now, lemme check the little one.”

 

I grimaced, but relaxed, turning back around so my back was against his sky-blue t-shirt, I pulled the bottom of my tank top up to expose my midsection. It had only been two months, but the growth seemed accelerated. It was obvious now that I had a bun in the oven, and Sans had taken full advantage of it by getting various t-shirts. I now had various attire of the family-building persuasion: “Pregosaurus”, “Loading”, and various Star Wars themed ones.

 

Right now, I was wearing a tank top with a print of a bun in an oven drawn on. My belly has grown far quicker than expected, the bump protruding out to the size of a fuji apple, surpassing the normal human pregnancy of thirteen weeks in nearly eight.

 

Concerned about the progression, Sans and I had visited Alphys two weeks earlier. However, she hadn’t seen anything wrong beside an extra bulky Soul. However, considering the strength of human Souls, Sans’ stature and strength, and the knowledge that this was basically new territory for both humans and monsters, it appeared to be fine.

 

Gently placing his phalanges against the softly rounded bump, Sans traced the hardened area where my uterus – and the baby – were.

 

We found out rather fast that to protect the child in a foreign (human) body, monster instinctively created a hardened barrier around the uterus to keep the child safe. It also acted as absorbent and distributor for the magical side of the child. Sans would lay his hand against my belly over the space where the child grew and let his magic seep through. The barrier would absorb that magic and give it to the child. The child needed both food and magic so doing this every day was a necessity.

 

“still can’t believe somethin’ we made is growin’ in there. i can see it, but the stats ‘re still fuzzy. but while this would be unusual for monster children, we got a special case, so i’m willin’ ta let it go fer now.”

 

“What do you think they will look like?”

 

Letting his magic seep through his fingers, he shrugged. “doesn’t matter. they’ll be beautiful no matter what.”

 

I snorted. “How do you know?”

 

“call it a parent’s intuition.”

 

“What gender do you think they’ll be? Or what do you want?”

 

“hmm, dunno. i wouldn’t mind havin’ a girl. get the feelin’ they’re easier to handle.”

 

“HA! Until they’re teenagers, maybe! Girls are a handful, I’ll have you know! And I am one!”

 

“then you want a boy, i’m assumin’.”

 

“Well–”

 

Knock! Knock!

 

“ARE YOU BOTH UP YET? WE HAVE GUESTS ARRIVING IN TWO HOURS! YOU BOTH NEED BE PRESENTABLE! BIRTHDAYS DO NOT MEAN LAZING ABOUT!”

 

“isn’ that for the birthday girl to decide?” I snorted.

 

“I HEARD THAT, BROTHER! YOU BOTH NEED TO GET UP!”

 

Waiting for the taller skeleton to return to the kitchen, Sans and I sighed. Having given the daily dose of magic, Sans pulled the shirt down again.

 

“so, does yer family know about what happened?”

 

Rising from the bed, I flinched. Grabbing my clothes, I talked while we got ready.

 

“Um…no. My sisters and I came up with an agreement a long time ago. If something life-changing happened, the responsibility of telling our parents goes to the main person involved. We only had one instance where it involved both Chloe and Ella – and no, I am not going into that now because it was bad and involved a guy – so they told Mom and Dad together.

 

“To give you two different examples, one would be if we decide to date someone or if we decide a major in college. Since these things can affect us long-term, they count. Although, say I broke my knee or something. Since doctor are very good at healing that, any of us could tell our parents.”

 

“huh…so you’ll be telling them today?”

 

“I already explained to them briefly that I am living with two guys. They will ask questions when they get here.”

“uh, do they know we are monsters?”

 

“No, they don’t.”

 

“…are they racist?”

 

“They have never been racist to other humans, so I don’t think so. I hope not. Ella and Chloe would have warned me if they were, I’m sure.”

He hummed. Fully dressed, I turned around and grinned. We had decided together that we would wear the matching set of Star Wars maternity wear. Both were black t-shirts with white writing and designs; while I wore a shirt with “THE FORCE IS STRONG WITH THIS ONE” over my baby bump, accompanied by stars scattered about, Sans wore a simple “I AM YOUR FATHER” quoted, with the ‘YOUR’ crossed out and replaced with ‘THE’ in silver-metallic sharpie.

 

“I still cannot believe you did that.”

 

He shrugged nonchalantly, slipping the black hoodie he wore every day.

 

“Do you have other hoodies?”

 

“yeah, i had a blue hoodie with fluff when we were underground. but when we came topside, i got this and later, found someone who could make patches and stuff. commissioned him to create some stuff and after, i sewed the gaster blasters patches on both sleeves and crossed bones on the back. i like it.”

 

I hummed. “Well, whatever. Shall we?”

 

Taking my outstretched hand, he leaned over and planted one more kiss to my head.

 

Locking gazes with me, he muttered, “lessgo.”

 

Ignoring my sputtering, he led me out.

 


 

 

“Wow, you nerds are really gonna wear…that?”

 

I grumbled. “Yeah, we are. Got a problem?”

 

The fish cackled, pulling her girlfriend close. “Nope. Not a problem at all.”

Alphys giggled nervously. “Can I h-help with any of the r-remaining preparations?”

I ran through my checklist. “The only thing left to do is put the balloons on the mailbox as a marker for anyone who doesn’t know where we live.”

 

“I-I’ll help you, then.”

 

Two minutes later, we were at the end of the driveway, tying balloons. I stood holding the ribbons so they couldn’t fly away while she knotted them.

 

“I have s-something to tell you.” I nodded for her to continue. “Undyne and Papyrus exchanged numbers with your sisters when they came for your graduation. Yesterday, Ella texted Undyne two things: there would be a mystery guest and wear a coat when your family first gets here.”

 

I gulped to clear the extra saliva. “The first part of that is…intriguing, but I’m a little worried about the second part.”

 

“Yes, y-yes! Undyne asked about it, too. Ella explained that you should ease them in. She then said she informed your parents that y-you broke up with Tom and are living with, I quote ‘two brothers, and are dating one of them’. She went onto to say that your parents appeared worried. Ella said she would let you explain the rest.”

 

“She wouldn’t have happened to tell you who the mystery guest is, would she?”

 

The doctor let out a nervous laugh. “No, she only said that you would thank her later.”

 

I huffed. “That is so Ella…”

 

As soon as the balloons were tied firmly, we headed back in. Sans made no move to stop me as I retrieved my favorite periwinkle light-weight hoodie, zipping it up over my tank, and only grinned when I returned, obviously having been informed of the same thing by Undyne. He had also zipped up his hoodie until only the top of the black t-shirt was visible but the quote was completely hidden.

 

Ten minutes later, the rest of the monster guests – and Frisk – arrived. With them were other humans: Alex and a few of my other classmates (of the male persuasion) whom I had bonded with over the years – Sully, Harry, and Zach.


Zach noticed that my phone was lit up and, when I checked, I found two voice messages from two best friends I had before college, Diana (since kindergarten) and Becky (since eighth grade) who lived too far away to visit at the time.

 

Toriel and Frisk brought more food, Frisk insisting on bringing Asgore who recognized you immediately, a shy goat monster who was looked like a miniature Toriel/Asgore named Asriel, whom I later confirmed was their son, Grillby, Muffet – you had visited her bakery a lot after meeting her at Grillby’s and had grown closer, and Toby or, as many called him, the Annoying Dog. It appeared the dog could be wherever he wanted regardless if he was invited. You didn’t mind, but Papyrus was immediately shouting at him to get out and stay away from his Special Attack. I could barely hold in my laughter.

 

After a promise to reward him with ‘Special Treats’ should he behave, Toby calmed down and sat on the rug, falling asleep within moments.

 

At 11:45 on the dot, there came a knock on the door. I grinned, excusing myself as I practically bounded to the door, the blurry image of my parents and cousisters visible through the thick glass. We all agreed that I would answer the door alone and would wait for formal introductions before the monsters came over.

 

Pulling the door out of the way, the hug-fest began. My parents and cousisters surrounded me, and I realized whoever the mystery guest was, they hadn’t come with my family.

 

It wasn’t long after the hugging ended that my mother started fussing over this and that, and asking all sorts of ‘mom questions’ that were completely random, but still make sense coming from her.

 

“Are you eating healthy foods? Do you still exercise? Have you gotten a job yet? Is it far? Do you have a car? Do–”

 

“MOM! CHILL!” I had to yell over her. “You just got here.  And I am fine.”

 

She gave me the Look before sighing exasperatedly. “Yes, of course.”

 

Acting as a diversion, my father inquired, “So, we have heard you don’t live alone. You with two boys, right?”

 

I hesitated. “Uh…in a manner of speaking, yes.”

 

“Well, what does that mean?” There’s the mom voice again. Oh, geez!

 

“Well, they aren’t…” No, that sounded wrong. Try again. “I mean, they…” No, no, no! Stop making things awkward. They might have their opinions about monsters, but they love you and will understand. It is okay!

 

Taking a deep breath, I began again, “There is a story that goes with how I met them. But I assure you that it is thanks to them, I could finally break up from Tom, and…well, just stay open-minded. Please?”

 

I waited for them to nod. Turning, I called. “Okay, Sans! You first, since you’re the one I’m dating.”

 

I heard a snort. “ya sure? no second thoughts? don’t want yer parents ta keel over, if ya know what i mean.”

 

“No puns, Sans! Get yer non-existent butt in here!”

 

A round of laughter could be heard as the skeleton grunted, the chair he had been sitting in squeaking as he stood up.

 

“Dude, smack her ass when you get over there!” Sully whispered.

 

“shuddup, not that kind of guy.”

 

After another round of quiet laughter, Sans finally appeared. Walking down the hall to the door, he kept his hands in his pockets and his head bowed slightly in respect, gaze to the floor. Once he stood beside me, he stood up and locked eye contact.

 

“hey, name’s sans, sans the skeleton.” He held out his hand.

 

Neither of my parents moved, their faces locked in shocked and bewildered expressions. Sans started to sweat, his smile becoming more and more forced. I looked towards where everyone else who had already arrived was, and saw everyone present at the end of the hall, completely ignoring the previously discussed arrangement.

 

When Sans’ boned began to rattle, I took matters into my own hands.

 

“Are you for real right now?”

 

All eyes locked on me.

 

“We are here to celebrate my birthday, and when I try to introduce you to my new boyfriend, who may I say not only protected me from Tom’s wrath, but also traveled across various states just to save me when the asshole abducted me.

 

“Are you seriously being judgmental and rude right now just because he isn’t human? Wow, now I know how parents feel when they say ‘I’m very disappointed in you’. You should be ashamed of yourselves. It’s so stereotypical, judging someone for how they look or what they are, instead of what kind of person they are.

 

“Do you have anything to say? If it’s something disrespectful, then leave. I won’t have that kind of negative shit in this house or in my life. When I learned that monsters existed, I realized there is a lot we don’t know. But a lot of people don’t want to change, or expect things to remain the same. You know what I say to people like that? I say grow up and stop being selfish. Honestly, that’s really what is going on. So many humans are selfish, ignorant, bigots who want to eliminate anything or anyone who is different than what is considered the social norm.

 

“That is why there are people like me. I am here to remind people that monsters, animals, and other humans have feelings, too. So, if you have something you want to say about how I live my life or who I spend my time with, fine. But if you are disrespectful to these people who are part of my family now, then you lost the right to call me your daughter. I am only going to warn you once.”

 

Stunned silence filled the room, but I didn’t really care. I may have lacked bravery, but I was filled to brim with integrity and justice, fueled by determination. However, for once, I had no patience. The people who know me all know I have no tolerance for prejudice. I shut it down if it is anywhere near me. I didn’t need bravery to do that since determination fueled me.

 

My family knew this better than anyone…

 

I had shut down a conversation between my now-deceased uncle and my father about an actor who had just ‘come out of the closet’. They had both loved that actor, but when they saw the interview and found out he was gay, they both started shouting profanities and cursing the poor man.

 

The disruption had been so loud that my cousins and I had heard it from our room on the other side of the house. Mother wasn’t home, and I didn’t want my younger cousins to get hurt, so I investigated it alone. I walked in the moment the words ‘gay faggot’ were spoken by my father. Having heard both words before, I was furious. I saw who they were talking about, and it only made me more furious.

 

“SIT DOWN AND SHUT UP!” I shouted, startling both adults.

 

“SIT DOWN AND SHUT UP!” I repeated. Surprisingly, they obeyed.

 

“You are both acting like children. And why would you call anyone a gay faggot? What did they do to deserve that? Just because a guy loves a guy or a girl loves a girl doesn’t mean they are a bad person. It’s their choice and judging them for it wrong!”

 

“Honey, being gay is a flaw–”

 

“NO! Treating others differently just because they have a different preference is a flaw! Before you knew they were gay, they inspired you. But the moment you found out they weren’t exactly what you want them to be, you decided to curse them! You can have your own opinions, but shoving them in other people’s face is wrong!

 

“Your behavior is sick! You should be ashamed!”

 

I glared them down, waiting unflinching. I am not sure what they saw, but what I saw from them I saw a thousand times before on the faces of people who acted unjustly: fear.

 

A knock came to the door and we all snapped towards it.

 

“Oh, thank fuck!” Ella cried, ignoring the sputters of their adopted guardians.

 

“Scooch, both of you!” She continued. “This is for Raven, and if you get in the way, you’ll have your remaining charges pissed at you!” Chloe nodded in agreement.

 

After moving out of the way, Ella pulled the door open. On the other side was a man with the same shade of black hair and blue eyes as me. He stood tall, having inherited his height from a long since deceased grandfather, with toned shoulders and a slim waist. He wore a navy colored dress shirt with rolled sleeves over a pale blue t-shirt and dark jeans with black sneakers.

 

It had been years, but I could never forget that face. Had he been a girl, we might have been nearly identical. However, he towered over me, as tall as Papyrus and almost as lanky.

 

This was the mystery guest! And Ella was right; I needed to thank her big time!

 

“DEVIN!” I flung myself at the man, and he wrapped his arms around me.

 

“It’s been too long, sis! I’m sorry I couldn’t visit sooner!”

 

A collective gasp broke the moment.


“you have a bro, too?”

 

My brother gazed up at him. “Sans, right? It’s a pleasure to meet you!”

 

Devin offered his hand and Sans, in shock but clearly impressed, took it. A second later, the skeleton yelped.

 

“the hell was that?”

 

Devil barked a laugh. “I’ve done my research on all the monsters coming today. As my job entails I know as much as possible, it’s an easy feat to learn about all of you. That includes your personal interests.”

 

He revealed a joy buzzer.

 

“holy shit, dude! oh, i think we’ll get along just fine!”

 

“I’m afraid that’s all I got gag-wise since I spent the money I had on a gift for my sis, but hopefully some banter will be enough.”

 

“NO PUNS!” Papyrus interjected immediately.

 

Devin chuckled. “No promises, Mr. Papyrus.” The tall skeleton squeaked with glee and started poking Undyne and muttering that ‘THE HUMAN KNOWS WHO I AM!’ until Devin added, “Although, I know you have probably heard a skeleton of them!”

 

Per the usual, there was a combination of chortles from Sans and Toriel and aggravated groans from Papyrus and Undyne. Frisk remained stone-faced, but raised a thumbs-up.

 

Ignoring the stone-like stillness that was our parents, my cousisters, brother and I joined my other friends in the living room. A few minutes after we started talking, my parents joined at the doorway, choosing to observe.

 

Devin opened a can of alcohol, having learned early on that the low alcohol tolerance gene was not a part of his general makeup.

 

“Yeah, we found out it is a part of mine. Ben pulled a prank and after three glasses with small bits of alcohol mixed in, I was done. That was the night I met Sans, too.”

 

“Oh, no way, tell me!”

 

I turned to Sans, eyes asking, and he nodded, holding me close for reassurance. I began telling the story of the party, meeting Papyrus and Sans, the trick and a brief description of the aftermath. When we got to the part of the next day, everyone was on the edge of their seats, waiting to hear if what they all predicted would happen had.

 

“Well, to put it simply, Sans and I are the first in recorded history to have created a child of both monster and human origins.”

 

I pulled down the zipper to reveal the Star Wars tank top and barely visible baby bump. Sans had unzipped his hoodie at the same time, revealing his matching Star Wars tee. Reading both descriptions resulted in a few chuckles, some gasps, and at least one squeal and ‘aww’.

 

“Since then, I have moved in with the brothers, gotten a job at Grillby’s bar and restaurant, and other stuff, including being kidnapped by Tom and saved by Sans. We are still learning about what the child needs based on trial and error. Alphys is very good at that, and Sans is a scientist also, hence the awesome new house, so it is a huge comfort.”

 

After a few light chuckles at my pun, the questions began. A lot of them were about what it’s like to be bonded to a monster and what it feels like to be pregnant with his baby. Then Sully had to go ask invasive, often dirty questions, each one earning him glares, at least one ‘hell nah’, and punches in the shoulder. He laughed every time.

 

“How am I friends with you again?” I wondered aloud, earning more giggles from those who know Sully and me the best.

 

“Cuz we were in the same boring class and I kept you from dying of boredom. You love my sass! Don’t deny it! If I didn’t have my bae, if you were single, and if you were my type, I’d tap that…hard!”

 

I heard a quiet growl from the skeleton whose lap I was sitting on. I pat his hand that was snaked around my belly protectively.

 

“Calm down, Sans. He’s not into girls. Chill!” The growling stopped.

 

“Yeah, my bae’s name is Chris. We’ve been together for five years now and five months ago, we kinda got engaged.”

 

“REALLY?!” I squealed.

 

“Yeah, we’re trying to decide where, when, blah and blah for our wedding.”

 

“Yes! Alex, in your face! I was right!”

 

“Shut up, Rave!”

 

Sully and I shared a laugh.

 

“I’m so happy for you! You deserve each other! I remember you two were so weird in class. You were so naïve. Pfff, I remember that one time at lunch. I said ‘so when you gonna ask Chris out?’ and you did a spit take right into Melanie’s face. She got so pissed and left, and we all laughed so hard. Oh man, it felt running a marathon when we finally stopped laughing. Stomach muscles in pain from laugh is REAL!”

 

“Dude, you were making each other laugh!”

 

“Yeah, while you sat there twiddling your thumbs and stuttering! You acted like yer tongue grew too big for your mouth! It was amazing! That was the only time I saw you flustered. It was worth it!”

 

We all laughed, Sully shrugging, trying to remain casual and failing.

 

Rising, Toriel grabbed everyone’s attention. “Alright, I believe it is time for cake. It’s it nearly two, is it not? What do you think, birthday girl?”

 

I nodded, rising. “Absolutely, and thank you again for baking it, Tori.”

 

The motherly goat monster smiled gently. “Of course, my child, and it is a fusion of monster and human food. I ran it by Doctor Alphys and she said it would be helpful for the baby’s growth.”

 

I grinned at the flustered yellow monster whose blush deepened.

 

Soon after, we were crowding around the cake. It was devil’s food with buttercream frosting. Little hearts of varying sizes decorated it. I realized they represented my Soul traits. In blue and yellow was written “HAPPY 24TH BIRTHDAY, RAVEN!” with a blue bone underlining it.

 

I squealed. “This looks amazing! Let me take a picture before you place the candles.”

 

Whipping out my phone, I snapped at least five pictures. As I put the device away, Tori and Frisk placed the candles in a heart shape, with a single candle in the center of the underlining bone. Snapping her fingers, Tori used her fire magic to light the candles at once. Unlike a normal flame, they glowed blue. I looked at Sans and noticed his eye-lights flowing a faint blue. He smirked, eyebrow ridges wiggling.

 

I snickered before turning back to the cake and closing my eyes to make a wish. While I did so, the others sang happy birthday. When they finished, I opened my eyes, inhaled deeply, and blew the candles out. I barely got all of them out in one breath, only managing with one last puff.

 

They cheered and Tori and Frisk began removing the candles, the teenager licking the frosting off the used candles. I rolled my eyes at their antics, remembering doing the same thing when I was little.

 

After everyone received a piece, we sat back down. By this time, my parents were openly involved in the party, the tension having left their posture and faces. They willingly conversed with both my human and monster friends. I gazed at them briefly, proud of the change.

 

“So, sis, are you two gonna have an official wedding? I know you’re Soul-bonded, but y’know us humans have our way.”

 

I locked gazes with Sans who had moved across the room to talk to Undyne, Alex and Harry. He was too deep in the conversation to notice me staring, even feeling through the bond.

 

“I guess that’s something we need to discuss. But I think Sans would be open to it. I just don’t know if I can get him into a tux.”

 

Devin snorted. “I getcha. He’s a hoodie, tee, sweatpants, sneakers kind of guy. But I think he would do that for you, even if it is just for a day.”

 

I nodded. “I think you’re right.” Turning back around, I faced my brother. “So, what do you plan to do after this party is over?”

 

“I actually have some business to attend to in this city, so I’ll be here for a bit. I’ll be busy, but maybe I can fit a lunch date of sorts into my schedule. Sans can come along, too. I would love to get to know my new brother some more. And I like Pap, he’s really cool and funny in his own way.”

 

I beamed. “I couldn’t agree more.”

He nodded contently. “You picked a good group of people. Don’t be too hard on Mom and Dad. They just…worry a lot. It may be for the wrong reasons, but they try their best. Help lead them into the future, not leave them behind.”

 

I sighed. “I’ll try.”

 

He ruffled my hair, earning a scowl. “I know you will, Rave. You were always so open, so honorable. Even when I left home and Mom and Dad were angry and disapproving, you still believed in me. I got all your letters. Even if I could always reply, I got them. And I prayed for your happiness.”

 

“You sent some letters, Devin, and I did get them. And for the record, I always believed you were doing what was right for you. As long as you were safe, that was all that mattered. What a lot of people don’t get is that everyone has the right to choose their individual path. What they feel is right for them is not necessarily what others hope from them, but if they feel it is right, they can choose to pursue it. We are all here for a reason, whether you take that literally or spiritually is up to you. I think I found my place. It just took me a while.”

 

He grinned brightly. “You are amazing. Don’t ever let others change your core, because you are strong and wonderful because of it. I’m so proud of you, sis.”

The moisture in my eyes brimmed over and I embraced my brother. I hadn’t realized the room was silent until I pulled away and wiping the tears away, turned to everyone.

 

“S-so, we have some games if anyone wants to play.”

 


 

 

Watching Undyne and Papyrus compete in games like hacky sack, sack racing, and balloon toss was hilarious. Though they were competitive, they always ended with a smile. The only ones who didn’t compete in anything and decided to watch instead were me, Sans, Toriel, Asgore, and Alex.

 

I watched as Asriel came out of his shell a bit with Frisk’s help, Harry and Zach encouraging him as well as the competitive duo, and eventually getting soaked by the balloons. Eventually, it became a balloon fight when Sully added some snarky comments.

 

I hadn’t laughed so much in forever. Having fully ditched the hoodie earlier, Sans had to retrieve in when I got a bit wet from an explosion as they ran by me. Thanking my mate, I pulled it on as I was lifted into the skeleton’s protective hold.

 

As the day transformed into night, the event began to wind down. Sans had fallen asleep holding me and wouldn’t wake up until Undyne, Pap, Sully, Zach, and Harry ganged up on him with me, tickling his sensitive areas with the help of Pap’s knowledge.

 

Sans then proceeded to chase them around, ignoring me even though I was involved for reasons related to protective reasons. I got the feeling he would get revenge a different way, and I thoroughly impressed with how quick he was to get the others.

 

“sheesh, ya do know there are other ways ta wake me up, right?”

 

“You mean shouting? We tried that. Shoving? Did that too. You’re heavy, like a freaking mountain. Anything else I haven’t mentioned that we could have tried?”

 

He harrumphed, blowing raspberries at me. I snickered.

 

“It’s was worth it.”

 

His grin grew downright evil. “wanna know what’s also worth it?”

 

I started scooting away. “Nope, nada, nunna that! Buh-bye, now!”

 

But he didn’t move. Instead, he pulled out his phone while calling everyone over.

 

“listen ta this. rave did an impression this mornin’ of how i apparently sound when i’m sleepy. called it a ‘bronx accent’. listen.”

I shrieked. “YOU LIED! YOU PROMISED–”

 

“that i wouldn’t shoooooooow anyone. that doesn’t mean i won’t let them listen!”

 

I screamed, trying to reach him to grab the device, but with how everyone was crowding around him now, I didn’t have a hope of getting to it in time.

 

Stomping my feet, I walked away. As I stormed off, I noticed a bucket of ready-to-use water balloons. I nodded, snatching it up and walking off. Looking behind me, I noticed Sully’s eyes on me.

 

Stomping off, I came to a tree with limbs that made it easy to climb. Acting quickly, I climbed, keeping the bucket steady. Reaching a branch with good coverage, I waited. Soon enough, I heard my name being called.

 

I felt the ping in my Soul and ignored it, forcing my emotions down so he could feel. I could feel his concern and growing guilt. It was getting closer. Readying myself with the bucket and one more item, I let off a small ping, and felt him respond, coming close until he was directly under me, looking around.

 

Smiling angelically, I turned the bucket upside down and watched as the water-filled balloons fell, satisfied with the yelp of alarm as each one hit the intended target.

 

Sans looked up, now soaking wet. As soon as he spotted me, he gasped.

 

“oh shit, what are you doin’ up there?”

 

Taking a couple extra seconds, I smiled at his shock turning to confusion. Then, I let my smile grow and turn demonic, as his had before. Taking a step, I let myself fall through the air. Following another curse, I felt Sans’ magic, and my descent slowed until I stilled completely in his soaking hold.

 

I pat his skull twice. “Serves you right for being a big bad skeleton.”

 

Putting the bucket over his skull, I hopped out of his arms and walked back to the house, ignoring the snorts, snickers, and other shocked or amused reactions of the partygoers, all of them having witnessed my acts of revenge.

 

Walking back into the living room, I relaxed back into the couch, ignoring the familiar presence that came from the opposite direction as what would be logical. But these past few weeks have taught me how much Sans loves to defy logic.

 

“i would say that was cruel, but i deserved it, so eh, fuhgeddaboudit.”

 

I opened my eyes to glare at him, holding up my hand, demonstrating my thumb and index finger nearly touching. “I am this close to calling a taxi service and getting out of this house until next week.”

 

“sorry, sorry, i get it. i’m done.”

 

I sighed. “You are such a goober. The look on your face when you got soaked was priceless. I got quite a few good shots.”

 

I lifted my cellphone, which I had used to take a picture of his soaked and bewildered expression before jumping. Using the zoom in, I had gotten a good shot of Sans with a shocked face, his vibrant blue tongue barely visible beyond his large teeth, the canines fanged, and then his confusion, his mouth curving awkwardly and his sockets narrowing. Both were adorable expressions.

 

Looking at him, I noticed he changed into a plain blue tee and jeans. His blush matched the jeans almost perfectly, only a shade or two off.

 

“Yep, totally worth it.”

 

He grumbled, but other than that, gave no response.

 

The others returned and hardly questioned anything after the first response of “magic” with jazz hands was given. Ten minutes later, the guests said their goodbyes and thank you’s, and I stood to say goodbye and thank them for any gift left on the table earlier that day.

 

The last to leave was my family, having wanted to take the time to apologize for the poor response to the introduction to my new monster family. I accepted the apology graciously and told them to visit again soon. My brother stayed an extra minute to give me a longer hug. But soon after, even he left, my parents needing to drive him to the place he’d be staying at in the city before heading to their hotel. They would be catching a plane home the next morning.

 

That night before bed, Sans and I talked about what we liked about the party. Sans asked me if I felt any different now that I was twenty-four.

 

I shrugged. “It’s just like every year. You don’t really feel different when it happens, do you?”

 

He chuckled. “i wouldn’t know. monsters don’t age like humans. we age when we’re young, but when we’re adults, we don’t age until we have kids. usually, we don’t grow older until the birthday of a year after the kid’s born. unless the kid is born close to our birthday, then we’d be aging again within the year.”

 

I hummed. “So, how long have you been twenty-five?”

 

“a long while.” He sounded tired just saying it.

 

“Well, good news, you are gonna start aging again within the next year or two.”

 

“heh, i know. that seems so weird.”

 

“To you, I’m sure. But I’m still aging every day.”

 

He looked at me, removing the reading glasses from his skull.

 

“Do you really need those to read?”

 

“yeah, why?”

 

“Sorry, it’s just…you have eye sockets with little points of light. It’s just…maybe it’s just messing with my logic.”

 

He snorted, understanding my perspective.

 

“welp, i’m turnin’ in. ‘m tired and even though i dun have work tomorrow, i like ta sleep.”

 

I giggled, crawling into his embrace. He growled happily.

 

“Sorry if my weird perception offends you.”

 

“nah, it’s f–”

 

I silenced him with a kiss.

 

“Dun worry, Sansy-Pansy.” I cooed in the fake Bronx accent, ignoring when he muttered a soft, “da fuq?”

 

I kissed him again. “Just...fuhgeddaboudit!”