Arcadia Power

Recent Posts

Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 10
1
Undergrounded / Re: Handplates to Freedom
« Last post by InterNutter on September 03, 2016, 05:49:15 am »
Adoption day 34

3AM.

Control. They really needed to learn control. This was the sixth night in a row that they had pushed her out of bed with their Calls. Toriel picked herself up and stumbled to their room, turning on lights as she went.

"I am here, my children," she yawned.

Papyrus was in full, panicked, babble mode. "TherewasahumanandtheyhadaknifeandtheykilledyouandSansandtheyweregonnakilleveryoneand--"

"All is well. It was just a dream, was it not?"

Sans, always the quieter of the two, rubbed at his eye sockets. "...paps and i were facing him down with everything we had," he said. "...it didn't go well."

Toriel sat on their bed and held them in her arms. "Name five things you can see."

"You, my brother, the bed, the lamp, and... the door."

"Good. Now four things you can hear."

"Your heart. Sans breathing. The fire in the dining room. The froggit down the hall... he's snoring."

That earned a laugh. "Very good. Three things you can touch."

"You. Sans. The bed."

"Two things you can smell."

"Cinnamon butterscotch pie. And Sans needs a bath."

"...nightmares make sweat, bro."

"And now... one thing you can taste."

Papyrus smacked his jaws. "Sleep funk," he said. "Euw."

It worked. He was calm and headed back to his usual cheerful demeanor. "Those things are real. Dreams are just dreams."

He eased back into sleep, but his brother was still wide awake. "...i know why you're lying to us," he said.

"You are both still very young," Toriel soothed her paw over his skull. "You need to feel safe. You need to be happy."

"...that's pretty hard when we know what's going to happen."

"Now, Sans. You can not be certain that the things you see are certainties. I am sure that--"

"...you die, tori... you take in a human kid and you love them and you die... and then we die."

Toriel reflexively held him tighter, as if that could help drive away the evil he had seen. "You said yourself that the seventh child made things... vague."

"...yeah... i did... but that's one of the things i keep seeing."

There was no magic to stop that kind of nightmare. No potion that would give him ease. Toriel just held him close and loved him as hard as she could.
2
Undergrounded / Re: Handplates to Freedom
« Last post by InterNutter on August 23, 2016, 11:30:33 pm »

Adoption Day 27

"There is a way to tell nightmares from reality," said Miss Toriel Ma'am. "Forget that nonsense about looking into mirrors or trying to read something[8]. Monsters like us have one guaranteed method to tell."

Both brothers sat and waited. Papyrus's mouth was agape.

"It is called Soul Calling. Almost everyone does it unconsciously, but there are times when they can be deliberate. But the reply is always automatic. Watch." Miss Toriel Ma'am closed her eyes and appeared to be concentrating. Her soul glowed brightly inside her and... {pwm}... sent out a wave of pure light. As it washed through the brothers, they felt their own souls twitch in response.

It felt... like love.

"Wowie," Papyrus whispered. "And we can do that too?"

"Oh yes," Miss Toriel Ma'am had her eyes open again. "You will have to let go of your brother, though."

Papyrus reluctantly did so, just as Sans reluctantly let go of him. As an extra measure, they scooted away from each other. One of the very few times they let themselves stay out of easy hugging range.

"Now. Papyrus. Close your eyes and think about how much you love your brother and how much you want to hold him. If you wish, you can pre--"

{PWM!}

The light even reached through his closed eyes. And he felt a response. An echo. It felt like Sans. Papyrus opened his eyes to see his brother laughing at him.

"...that almost knocked me over, bro."

"Soul calling is usually not a physical force," Miss Toriel Ma'am allowed. "You have an extraordinary amount of love in you, Papyrus."

"Of course," he said. "There is lots to love about my brother."

*

"Your turn, Sans."

Ah crap. "...can i try tomorrow?" he managed. "...i -uh- need some recovery time from paps..."

Tori looked sad. He didn't like it when she was sad. "Please try," she said. "It is not difficult."

"I believe in you, brother," said Paps. "You can do it. You're strong."

He knew he was going to fail. He always failed at the raw magic stuff. Without KR, he couldn't do _anything_. But to make them both happy, he had to give it a shot. He closed his eyes. Took a deep breath. And gave it everything he had.

...he could feel it go, and the echo from his brother... and then it all went black...

Sans opened his eyes and found the ceiling. There was a feeling that some time had passed. "...d'd i knock m'self out tryin' too hard?" he mumbled.

"Brother! You are well! I told you that you could do it! You _did_ knock me over! Your love is so strong that there is a dent in the wall!" Pap pointed out the Papyrus-shaped silhouette of a dent in the wall near the table. "I told you that you are magnificent!" Pap had nothing but hugs for him.

And now that he was aware of what it was, he could feel tiny pings between their souls. It meant that his brother was real. That this wasn't a dream.

"...didn't hurt'cha did i?"

"Of course not. Love is never hurtful. Even if it is a bit forceful."

Tori gave him one of her potions. She made it taste like hot dogs. Just for him. "Next time," she said. "Do not give _everything_ to your call. You could reach all of the Undergound, and half of the whole world with that much power."

That... just didn't make sense. "...but... i'm weak... i'm disappointing..."

She gently caressed his skull. "Don't you believe a _word_ that man said," she instructed. "He is a liar. A base and despicable liar."

Sans made a note to look up 'despicable' in the house dictionary. Later. Lots and lots of time later. He had some important resting to do.

[8] This humble author has seen reflections _and_ the written word in dreams :D
3
Undergrounded / Re: Handplates to Freedom
« Last post by InterNutter on August 13, 2016, 09:17:29 pm »
Adoption Day 26

Toriel eased herself slowly out of the bed. Sans allowed her out without rousing, but Papyrus opened one eye and murmured, "Nyeh?"

"Go back to sleep," she whispered. "All is well. I just need to stretch." A bed made for two skeletons was not meant for a sound sleep for someone of Toriel's dimensions. Besides, she could catch a few hours' sleep in her own bed before resuming her daily duties.

Well. That was the plan.

She hadn't gone three steps towards her own room before the icy grip of terrors past threatened to shatter her breastbone. She could feel her heart racing like it wanted to get out. Tears flooded her eyes and there was not enough air. There was never enough air! She fell to her knees, clutching at her chest. Every time she closed her eyes, she saw Chara dying slowly and horribly[7]. Saw Asriel falling into dust at her feet. Saw the nightmares she had been having about these children dying, too.

Toriel tried her utmost to keep her noise to a minimum, gulping back ugly sobs that would have woken them. They both needed their sleep. She would recover from this in time. All she had to do was get through it _silently_. And the problem with that is that she had a vivid imagination and had already read about everything that could possibly go wrong.

And the worst thing, the most hideous thing, was the newest of her books was by Doctor Gaster. His most advanced chapters frequently referenced 'experiments with cloned material'. Experiments that the brothers had been subject to. It made her sick to use that book, but... there were things in there that could save lives. _Had_, in fact, saved Papyrus' life.

But that small mercy didn't change the fact that she wanted to throw up everything she had ever eaten until the evil inside her was purged as well. And all that would come out of her was tears and silent howls of abject misery.

Toriel never heard their door open. The first she knew about it was a strong, golden glow and two sets of skeletal hands trying to comfort her. Sans had fetched a slice of cake. Papyrus had a glass of milk with him. Two things that they thought could possibly help. Giggles and sobs fought and came out in an ugly mess of sound, but the tearing panic faded away from her. She took them gently into her arms.

"Oh, my children..." she managed. "You are far too good, and I am glad you are well."

They did insist on plying her with cake and milk. And they tucked her into bed. They promised they would check for humans who had fallen down, and they would keep each other safe.

She believed them, and believed in them. Their abilities were beyond phenomenal. They would be fine.

But that would never stop her worrying when one of them fell ill.

[7] Apparently, poisoning by buttercups leads to some really gross side-effects. Look them up only if you're brave.
4
Undergrounded / Re: Handplates to Freedom
« Last post by InterNutter on August 13, 2016, 05:34:47 am »

Adoption Day 25

He opened his eyes in the darkness. The bed by his side was empty and cold. And there was a shadowy figure standing in the open doorway. A terrifyingly familiar figure. Clipboard and all. Just standing, and taking notes.

He wanted to shout, "How did you find us? Where is my brother?" but no sound came out. He tried to move, and couldn't. He could feel the straps. The pins. No.

Papyrus had never left the lab. It had all been a dream. And the device in front of him was building up power...

He opened his eyes in the darkness. No pain. No cold. Sans safe and sleeping soundly by his side, lit by the glow from Papyrus' eyes. Everything was okay. Relieved, he rolled over to wrap his brother in his arms and hold him tight...

...only to feel him crumble to dust the instant he touched him.

Papyrus could not scream. He heard Miss Toriel Ma'am at the door. She sounded... sad. "Ah," she said. "It is over, then. I am sorry."

And then He appeared in the portal. Cold and blank as always.

"It is time for you to go back," she said.

Papyrus could feel His grip on his soul, taking him away from all that remained of his brother. He was crying and screaming, demanding to know why Miss Toriel Ma'am had done this. He had loved her! They had both trusted her! Why? WHY?

He opened his eyes in the darkness. Stabbing fear gripping his chest. Papyrus had never been happier to hear his brother's snoring. But he dared not touch him. Papyrus huddled up into a ball and cried a little. But not for long. Miss Toriel Ma'am opened the door. "Are you all right, my child?"

"I don't know," he said. "This is the third time I've woken up and I don't know what's real..."

"Oh my," said Miss Toriel Ma'am. She sat by him and hugged him close. "Tell me everything."

He started with the waking up and finding Sans gone, and Him watching over him... and being in the bad place again. And never having been here with her.

Whenever he stopped to breathe or sob, there was a scratching sound. Distracted by it, he peeked past Miss Toriel Ma'am's shoulder and... there He was. Scribbling things down onto his clipboard...

He opened his eyes in the darkness. Jumped out of bed and summoned some bones as he went. "Come on out," he called. "I dare you! I know how to fight, now!"

Movement behind him! He whirled and set his attacks flying...

Only to see Miss Toriel Ma'am's face in an expression of utter betrayal before her form crumbled away into dust.

He opened his eyes in the darkness. Papyrus covered his eyes and screamed, and screamed, and screamed.

"...bro... bro, wake up."

Papyrus opened his eyes to see Sans' one true eye glowing blue in the gloom.

"You were having a nightmare," Sans said.

"Please don't die," begged Papyrus. "Please tell me that He isn't here?"

"...sshhh... you need t' stay quiet."

And the human came through their door. Covered in dust and looking monstrous. "There you are," it said.

He opened his eyes in the darkness. Papyrus gibbered a little and curled himself up tight. His glow was so bright that it filled the entire room. He didn't know where to go or who to talk to or what to do, because a frightening monster kept turning up and he'd wake up again. A vision stood in the doorway. Another human. It was wearing pink and blue in stripes, and a gross bandage. All it had with it was a stick.

But it was a _human_! Another frightening monster.

"Go away! Go away! I don't wanna wake up any more! Go away... I don't want any more nightmares..."

The lights turned on. And Miss Toriel Ma'am was there. "What is all this noise?"

"Please don't let Him get us? Please don't let the humans come? Please don't die? Please don't let Sans die? Please be re-he-heal..." a shuddering gasp of a sob. "Please be real this time..."

Miss Toriel Ma'am scooped him up in her arms, cradling his whole body and feeling his skull with tender care. "Oh dear. You have a fever. I am not very good with fevers." She took him out to the dining room and sat him on the big soft chair. She let him have a pillow to hug and made up a bag full of ice  to press wherever he felt uncomfortable.

Which was everywhere. His joints felt scratchy and he couldn't really get comfortable. And everything was really, really miserable.

And he kept Seeing the human. More than one of them. Sometimes, five at once. And not one of them listened to him telling them to go away. He complained to Miss Toriel Ma'am, but he only got her to respond once in a while. And sometimes, he would pick the wrong one to talk to. He could tell when she was touching him, and the world was slightly more comfortable in her arms.

But it was still a very bad morning.

*

Sans opened his eyes in the darkness. Aware that something was wrong. The space by his side was cool and empty. He turned on the light and gave the sheets a panicked examination for dust. And then he fled the bed to see what had happened to him. Someone was humming, in the dining room. Tori. He raced to find her and found Papyrus as well.

He wasn't looking too great. Sans couldn't remember the last time he had seen Papyrus this... floppy. Wait. No. He could. Every time he had a nightmare. Papyrus, skull nearly broken and broken limbs bound, flopping on the floor and unable to speak because He had hurt him so bad. Sans could feel his eye flare. "PAP! BRO!"

Papyrus reached out. "...are you real this time? Come'n hold my hand... can't tell 'less y'r touching me..."

Sans didn't need to be told twice. Clinging to his hand as if he could hold his soul onto living for one more minute. "...right here, bro... it's okay."

Tori was looking tear-streaked and weary. Worried and scared. "I am afraid your brother has caught an illness."

Flashback to the bad place. Feeling horrible despite being healed. Feeling his brother flooding him with healing magic and not feeling it working. Feeling the pull of Him lifting him around by his soul. Cruel prodding. A cold announcement. "Sick," He had said. "Useless." And then He hauled him away from his frantic brother and put him in one of the tubes.

Sans knew that Tori didn't have any such thing. "...so what'cha gonna do with him?"

Papyrus moaned and shifted the placement of a large-ish bag against his body. Letting it rest on his rib cage.

Tori sighed. "I will do all I can," she said. "There are medicines that work for everyone. I may have to find a library that has books on skeleton medicine... But I can keep him comfortable and soothe his woes, for now. I fear he is sicker than I think. He is... hallucinating, perhaps?"

"...go 'way," Papyrus mumbled. "...darn humans..."

Humans? Plural? Sans opened up his Sight and Looked. Oh. So many humans coming through this house. All at different times... "...no, tori... his _sight_ is going haywire," he explained. "...he's _seeing_ everything at once."

Tori breathed easier. "Oh, thank goodness. I was so worried it was a grave illness." She hugged Papyrus briefly, and only relaxed her grip when he loosed a complaining whimper. "I still think it might be wise to find those books. I do not like not knowing how to help you."

Sans peeked into the immediate possibilities. "...you can go now... i'll be fine lookin' after my bro while you're gone." It was not the first time he had spent some time cradling his brother. But it was the first one where he _knew_ that help would be coming. That made everything else a lot easier.

When Tori returned, she came with great armloads of things. Three thick and heavy volumes about medicine. Container after container of things that could help. None of them looked like anything He had used at all. Sans watched in fascination as Tori read passages from the books and mixed up things to try to get Paps to ingest. Only to wait for a time, watching the clock, and start again with something else.

Finally, after hours of this, Paps' hot bones began to cool. Tori announced that his fever had broken and the best thing for him was sleep. Sans wasn't even sure how it happened that way, but that night, they all snuggled together in one shared bed. Holding each other safe against the terrors of the night.
5
Undergrounded / Re: Handplates to Freedom
« Last post by InterNutter on August 12, 2016, 06:30:36 am »

Adoption Day 12

Papyrus loved to help in the kitchen. Possibly more than he loved training. Miss Toriel Ma'am was so gentle and kind about unlocking his abilities. She even made him feel better about things he was jealous of, like the blaster skulls. They were keyed, she said, to intense rage. And Papyrus had no reasons to feel angry.

There were other things Sans was good at, like Karma magic. In fact, he was brilliant at it. Karma could amplify effects over time, depending on how good or... otherwise... a soul was. Someone as innocent and trusting as Papyrus could be revived from near death with a Karma beam. And someone like Him... would find his HP ebbing according to his misdeeds.

He could never understand why learning about it made Sans grumpy for an entire day. But then, there were lots of things that seemingly sailed right over his head.

And there was one day when Miss Toriel Ma'am kept trying to explain fractions and maths with fractions to him. She wore herself out trying to show him how they worked, even to the point of chopping an apple into halves and quarters and eighths... until they were both crying from frustration. He was much happier in the kitchen, where the halves and thirds and whatnot were clearly labeled and not threatening to multiply or divide each other.

Sans was only interested in the eating part. He slept a lot more, now that he had unlocked a secret to getting higher HP. It was a cheat, in a way, but it was better than living in constant fear of accidental death.

He woke up at the smell of fresh cookies, of course. Miss Toriel Ma'am cooled them in her hands before allowing the brothers to take one each.

"I have been meaning to ask, my children. When is your birthday? There is a recipe I want to try that would be perfect for such an occasion..."

"...what's a birthday?" murmured Sans.

"That is the day you were born."

"What's a day?" said Papyrus. He'd heard Miss Toriel Ma'am use terms like 'morning' and 'evening' and 'good night'. And of course, breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Back in the bad place, there was lights on and lights out, which came without reason.

"Oh dear," sighed Miss Toriel Ma'am. "I need a little time. Excuse me." The instant she was out of sight, Papyrus could hear her running. There was some distant cursing[6] as some things overturned, and then she came running back. "This, my children, is a calendar. Each square represents a day. And a day is twenty-four hours long."

Aha. He knew hours. That came in handy with cooking times. Twenty-four of them was a really long time.

Miss Toriel Ma'am explained weeks and months and years (a year was three hundred and sixty-five days long three times out of four, and on the fourth year, February got an extra day! So _much_ time...) "And here is the day I found the both of you." It was almost a month gone.

"Oh. I see," Papyrus said. "So... can that be our birthday, then?" He did his best not to flinch, but it was still hard not to cower when asking for things. Miss Toriel Ma'am's seemingly unending kindness was still a jarring change from the bad place.

"Yes, of course," she cooed, and patted him on the head (he still jumped a tiny bit at the contact, much to his regret) "Although, I think that means you are both overdue for a celebration."

That was a word they had to look up while Miss Toriel Ma'am was busy in the kitchen. Something really amazing was coming. And they were not disappointed.

The cake dominated half of the table. It was as tall as Papyrus, and was made out of three parts. And there were... colours on it. And shiny lights. There were so many new words there. Sparklers. Icing. Sugar flowers. It seemed a shame to cut into it and eat it but-- the _flavours_ that cake could be. Both brothers ate themselves silly.

This was the best of anything ever! Better than being rescued. Better than having a home. Better than his fabulous red scarf, which was his favourite thing in the world right next to Sans. And when it was their real birthday (eleven months to go! He could hardly wait!) there would be presents! And singing! And _more cake_!

He dozed in between his turns at reading, that night. Too much cake settling into his body and making him drowsy. Sans was naturally drowsy, though. And he was better at waking up on time...

Sleep... dragged him away...

[6] Toriel doesn't use very strong words, so imagine 'darn' or 'bother' or 'drat' used with as much impetus as possible.
6
Undergrounded / Re: Handplates to Freedom
« Last post by InterNutter on August 11, 2016, 02:38:31 am »

Adoption Day 10

Sans couldn't remember the last time he actually slept. Not the cat-napping he usually did when weariness caught up with him and bludgeoned watchful wariness with a sneak attack. Not the kind of sleep he got back in the bad place, where he fell unconscious from pain, or when he had his senses open for any sign of His approach. But this time... right after Toriel tucked them both in to their shared bed, he fell deep down into sleep so pure that he actually felt... rested.

Something had unlocked. Not anywhere physical, just... within himself.

Sans opened his eyes. Same friendly ceiling. Same soft bed. Same collection of toys and... same best brother ever, waiting for him and practicing his blue magic on a particularly light teddy bear.

"Finally," said Papyrus. "I thought you would be napping forever, brother. Miss Toriel Ma'am has been keeping breakfast warm for hours."

Sans dragged himself out of bed. He felt a lot better than he had since... since he couldn't remember. How was it that getting a full night's sleep was exhausting? He shuffled into the googly-eye slippers and made his way to the dining room. "...thanks for waiting for me," he mumbled. "...dunno why i'm so tired, i actually got to sleep."

Toriel was impressed by something. Scooped him up in a hug and danced with him. Laughing all the time and congratulating him.

It took four tries at understanding her before she spelled it out:

A good sleep can raise someone's HP above their usual limits.

And now all he wanted to do was sleep. That, and eat. He was starving.
7
Undergrounded / Re: Handplates to Freedom
« Last post by InterNutter on August 08, 2016, 11:03:24 pm »

Let's see what I can do

====8<====

Toriel had always been worried for the skeleton brothers, but their behaviour was getting a little strange. Well, strange even for them. Their tormenter had no interest in teaching them how to be children, so they never really learned. They had had a tendency to stop and look to her whenever they felt they were enjoying themselves for too long. And they flinched whenever she made to caress their heads.

But now...

Ever since Sans had teleported for the first time, and she had fallen asleep cuddling them, they had become even stranger. They were secretive to begin with, but now they were purposely trying to hide something from her. Books came and went from her shelves. She could sometimes hear Sans reading in the night, but not hear _what_ he was reading.

And whenever she announced she was going out, one or the other would announce that they would both be fine at home for the _exact_ time that she would be gone. And when she came back, one or the other would be cleaning.

They were certainly a lot more affectionate. If there was an hour at home where she did not have one or more brother embracing her, then she couldn't remember any more. Reading time moved onto her comfy chair, with both brothers snuggled into her lap and making attempts at reading. Papyrus had to use a ruler, sometimes, to 'make the letters behave'. A method he or the both of them had invented, they said, to help her sleep.

They knew she was staying up in the nights to make things for their benefit.

And as their covert behaviour progressed... they started talking in hands. She could no longer deny that they were the creations and victims of Doctor Gaster. He was the only skeleton she knew who spoke in symbols. Though neither of the brothers knew how to, or bothered with, manifesting magical hands that spoke in sign language. Toriel could tell they knew she didn't understand when they did it. It was always when she came to check on them, and one of them was always squinting. She would catch a word, maybe two, in Common, and then the one who was talking would seamlessly switch to the symbol font of Gaster's.

Sometimes, they would emerge from under their beds and smile in a guilty way.

And even more worrying, two days after she started crying to herself, Papyrus and Sans came to confess.

"We never wanted you to feel bad, Miss Toriel Ma'am," said Papyrus. He was holding Sans' hand very tightly. Possibly for courage. "We just... um..."

"...wanted to surprise you," murmured Sans. "...we're sorry."

"Can we show you?"

They had gifts under their beds. Things they had made. Things they were still making. Things they had yet to make.

Papyrus proudly showed a 'reading lens' he had made out of bits of wire and yellow cellophane. It helped him focus on the letters a great deal better than the ruler. He'd been using it at night to help with their research.

Sans showed how he and his brother had been working on making her a feast. So far, they had figured out spaghetti, hot dogs, and something that could charitably be called a quiche. "...we're still working on pie," Sans confessed. "...wanted t' make a day when we did everything for you... f'r a change."

Toriel couldn't stand it any longer. She scooped them up in her arms and wept into their shoulders.

"Brother! It didn't work. She's still crying."

"...just wait."

"Oh, I am so relieved," she sighed. "I had thought you were becoming hostile. I had worried that you did not trust me..."

"You... can't See the pictures?" said Papyrus.

A long question and answer session followed, with all of them huddled into a sheet fort made out of the table, and picnicking on the brothers' cooking efforts. Gaster had done hideous things to them, that was true. He had also given them peculiar gifts. Both brothers could see into the timelines. They could change the way things went by what they said or what they did. Or didn't do.

"There's a time coming where everything is muddled up," said Papyrus. "It's a long way from now and... we can't sort it out."

"...'s like looking into mud," said Sans. "...but we know it's after the seventh kid falls."

That was like a shot to her heart. Was Asgore going to go through with his awful plan? Was he doing it even now?

"We can't See what we aren't there for," said Papyrus, answering a question she hadn't framed into words. "Sorry, Miss Toriel Ma'am."

She sighed. "I still worry about that little girl. She was so scared. I wish I could have saved her. I wish we could have calmed her."

Sans was squinting. "...sorry, Tori... i see a weird jar... and a human soul inside it... and it's next to a big man who looks a lot like you."

*

Starving. Out of breath. Wishing she could go home. Lost. Lonely. And scared out of her wits. She had thought that the cave under the waterfall was a great place to hide. They had said that going through water threw off dogs.

They were wrong.

She woke to see four dogs holding her arms and legs down. A fifth had her shoes!

"Take it off her," said one. "Leave it here."

"Murderer," said another.

"You're going straight to the king," said a third.

"Er," said the one with her shoes. It was holding them as if they were a dead rat. "What do I do with this?"

"Take it into the marshes. Hide it where it won't hurt anyone else."

No. This was wrong. The flower had promised... it had promised she would go home... She started to cry. Too late. Far, far too late.

====8<====

more when inspiration strikes.
8
Undergrounded / Re: Handplates to Freedom
« Last post by InterNutter on August 07, 2016, 04:59:25 am »
More at last!

====8<====

Adoption Day 7

Sans had got used to Toriel carrying him back to their cosy little home. Training was tiring for him, and whether they trained in the long hall with the column or the long hall that was their cellar, he finished every day absolutely exhausted.

It didn't matter if he got hit. Tori threw healing magic for them to train with. He learned to block and dodge really quickly. And it was a good thing that most battles didn't last for very long before a monster didn't want to fight. Showing mercy was important. Tremendously important.

And after they got to know everyone in the ruins, it wasn't as if they got into many fights.

He relaxed in her arms. Carried around like a baby. Like he had never been carried.

_Dim memories from the edge of consciousness. A lot of pain. A green light, and Him swearing and yelling the word 'no' over and over again. Feeling his body being hoisted up into a grip very similar to the one Tori was using now..._

Sans didn't want to run away. For a start, he was way too tired. But he would have given anything to be in his bed and hiding under the covers from that memory.

{POP}

He dropped about an inch onto the surface of the big bed he shared with Paps. So worn out that he was getting tunnel vision. He could hear Tori and Paps screaming. And he could barely keep his eyes open.

_I'm okay. I'm sorry. I'm okay. Just... come... find..._ and sleep swallowed him whole.

*

Two of the scariest things had happened. First and foremost was that Sans vanished from her arms. Not a trace. Not a shower of ash (that nightmare still woke her up in the wee small hours). Not a wisp of smoke. Nothing but a brief 'pop' like a balloon meeting something sharp.

Of course she screamed. Which made Papyrus scream. She ran back to the cellar hall where they had started. She tried to hear him through the door.

And then Papyrus announced. "We'll find him in our room."

The eeriest thing was how he said it with complete calm. He had one eye closed and the other was... squinting. Toriel got the feeling that he wasn't looking into the here and now.

She scooped him up and ran all the way to their room and, indeed, he was right there on top of the quilt. And out cold.

Toriel didn't put Papyrus down. There was plenty of room for them both in her arms.

*

Sans was okay. Sans was fine. He'd just found a brand new ability and it had knocked him sideways.

Papyrus held his brother until he, too, fell asleep.

And woke up sometime in the early morning. Facing Sans, who was also awake. Miss Toriel Ma'am had not let either of them go.

"...she copies the books into your font so you can read them," said Sans. "...don't think she sleeps much."

"Sometimes I wake in the night," said Papyrus, trying to whisper. "And she's feeding you healing magic. I know she doesn't sleep much."

That seemed to decide it. "...we gotta do something nice for her."

But what?

====8<====

more when inspiration strikes.
9
Undergrounded / Re: Papy Love
« Last post by InterNutter on August 07, 2016, 04:28:43 am »
MOAR!

====8<====


  “That song saved my life,” he said. “I sing it for Sans when he can't sleep. Or when he's… Sad.” Papyrus stared into infinity for a moment. “And just three days after that, things got better. You did a news piece about our little shop. My brother and I got more work. And… a nice old lady gave us her house.”

  “That was you? It was always you! I should have remembered. I should have known. It was you! With the flowers! And the box! And-- ooooh! You were my lucky charm! I should have _seen_ it!” Nice cream half-eaten, hot chocolate half-consumed, Mettaton squealed as he launched himself from his cushioned throne just so he could dance like a massive nerd in a moment of unguarded glee. “It was _you_! All along, it was _you_!”

  It was a babble of incoherent gibberish, but there was a heart of a story in the middle of it. About a little pink ghost who wanted to be a superstar. About how the ghost didn’t know if anything they did was any good at all. And about how there was a skeleton kid in the flowers where he sang a song without words, to get all his feelings out. The look on that kid’s face was enough to inspire that ghost to go ahead with his decision. To become Mettaton.

  And he was the same little skeleton who was one of Mettaton’s first news pieces for _Good Morning Underground_. A piece that was so good that it started a flood if interest in Mettaton himself. As well as a flood of interest in the skeleton brothers who were just trying to make ends meet.

  And once again, that same skeleton was behind the very human that brought Mettaton’s highest ratings in his entire career.

  “Impossible,” breathed Papyrus. “That ghost was a girl…”

  Mettaton deflated into a depressed slump in his cushioned throne. “Please understand that I don’t like to do this. I… hate… being my old me. I… _was_… a ghost. And all the other things. I’m not that any more.” He opened his chest plate and punched in a code. An automated voice began a countdown and his SOUL chamber opened. “I’m doing this for you,” he said. “So you understand.”

  “Three,” said the automated voice. “Two. One.”

  Mettaton’s body slumped. There was a diminishing whine as his motors stopped running. His SOUL separated from its chamber and, gradually at first, a pink halo formed around it. The ghost girl from the field of echo flowers. Her face twisted up in an expression of pain and disgust. “I d-d-d-don’t like this mmm-me,” she said. “I feel… www-wrong… like th-this. B-but I am nnn-now and always have b-b-b-been a b-boy. D-do you understand, P-Papyrus?”

  He nodded. This was serious stuff. “Of course, Mettaton. Go back to your real body. It’s okay. I get it now.”

  The ghost looked so sad as he faded out of sight and the SOUL re-entered his robot body. A sadness that eased onto Mettaton’s face. “I understand if you hate me now,” he said. “Many… would see what I’ve done as a lie…”

  “Why would I hate you?” said Papyrus. “You changed my life.”

  “And now I want you in mine,” Mettaton whispered. “Please? Name the time and place. Tell me what to wear. Anything.”

  “Y-you mean… a date?”

  “Oohh, yes…”

  “Between a star like you and a humble skeleton like me?”

  “Oohh, _yes_.”

  “With a candlelit dinner and fancy clothes and flowers and music and dancing?”

  “Oh! Yes!”

  “Mettaton…”

  “Yes, darling, yes!”

  “I’m afraid I have to refuse.”

  “Y-- What?” Mettaton deflated, lost. “Y-you said you d-don’t have any r-rr-reason t-t-to hate mmmm-me?”

  “I, the Great Papyrus, have been reading up on the dating manual and Step Fifteen is: _Deliver a gentle and loving kiss to let them know you want to see them again._ I’m a skeleton. I don’t have lips.” He sighed. “I’m doomed to remain alone. I cannot deliver that which my love truly deserves.”

  “Th-there’s still hugging? I c-c-can k-kiss for the b-both of us. P-p-p-please! It’s yyy-you I www-want.” He muttered an oath. “Lll-look at mmm-me. I’m sss-so upset, I’m sss-stuttering ag-g-gain. I’m a mmm-mess.” He snagged the nice cream and all but engulfed it. “P-p-p-please, d-d-darling… I… I think I nnn-need you.”

  Papyrus had so many conflicting emotions. The star he had loved was, in reality, the ghost he owed his life to. And this same star loved him. And yet, real love could never be possible, because he, the Great Papyrus, needed lips to do the kissing part. And there were two chapters in the dating book about kissing. With graphs and science.

Kissing was _important_ if he wanted to give his date the very best. And he certainly wanted to give Mettaton nothing short of the very best. Possibly more than the very best. And since Mettaton had asked him, the Great Papyrus out… then he _had_ to deliver the very best.

“I must think about things,” he announced at last. “When I, the Great Papyrus, have a solution, then I shall return for our date.” He had to hurry. Finding a solution was going to take a long time, he was certain. And the sooner he started and the faster he worked at it.

====8<====

The next section is not finished. I am accepting the silliest things you can think of as a solution to the kissing thing.
10
Undergrounded / Re: Handplates to Freedom
« Last post by InterNutter on August 04, 2016, 01:22:28 am »

====8<====

Abduction Day 6Adoption Day 1

Papyrus could feel the tension in the air. All those un-asked questions filled him up with an unpleasant tickly sensation. And Miss Toriel Ma'am was upset. He could see it. All her smiles had gone away and there was a slump to her shoulders. And she moved slowly. Like his brother did when... when He had hurt them.

Papyrus knew from rough experience that not all hurts went away with healing.

But those prickly, tickly questions kept bothering him.

Sans was being a lot nicer to Miss Toriel Ma'am. Helping out, where she let him, or trying a few weak jokes. None of his usual... anger... was coming out. And it was good to see him being like that for someone, but...

One of the questions escaped. "What _was_ that thing?"

"...half-past breakfast," murmured Sans. "...didn't think you'd last this long."

"Brother," Papyrus chided. "This is important. I can feel it."

Miss Toriel Ma'am put her fork down. She'd only been poking her food around, anyway. "That... creature... was a human. They... They are the species that put monsters like us underground. They are the species that put up the barrier. And the barrier keeps us down here."

"...so we'd all be better off if humans didn't exist, right?" said Sans.

Miss Toriel Ma'am shut her eyes and got very, very still. He could almost see a halo of sadness around her. "I loved a human child as if they were my own, once."

"...aaah," Sans growled to himself. "...failure... stupid..."

"They were not a child of my body and soul, but a child of my heart," said Miss Toriel Ma'am. She hadn't heard Sans. "My husband and I... loved them. Just as we loved the child who did come from our souls[5]. They grew together as siblings. And for a little time, everything seemed... better."

It was not a happy story. Stories about happenings in the Underground never seemed to end happily. The human fell sick. Dangerously sick. No magic could help them. No amount of medicines or spells or potions worked. The human was fading away, and they only had one request. To see the flowers from their village one final time.

Miss Toriel Ma'am's monster-child took the human's soul. And then the humans body. Together, they crossed the barrier and Miss Toriel Ma'am's son tried to fulfil their sibling's last wish. It didn't end well. The monster child had just enough time to tell their story before they fell down and turned into dust.

"...sorry," said Sans. "...didn't know."

"Humans have choices," said Miss Toriel Ma'am. "The one that you saw chose to be a murderer. And I... I chose to contain them behind the door in the cellar. Unfortunately... when you healed me, Papyrus, I... I accidentally let them go on to the greater Underground." She hurried to soothe him. "It was not your fault, my child. It was mine. I should have... I should have..."

"...hey, it's okay," said Sans, reaching out to comfort her. "...maybe that thing an' _him_ will get together... they deserve each other, don'cha think?"

*

Welp. That went over like... something designed to sink. He dropped the subject and let Papyrus ask all the questions and say all the things.

"Why was that one so mean?"

"How did they make the barrier?"

"Why did they make the barrier?"

"How can we be ready?"

Sans surfaced from his self-blame for that one. Already, Paps was thinking ahead for the next time. Paps was real clever about that sort of thing and He never figured it out. Paps planned. He didn't always plan all the way, because some things just didn't work out all the way. But he always had some really good ideas. Lots of them very nearly worked.

"I can... teach some methods," Toriel allowed. "And I have some books. It has become clear that you will need to defend yourselves. It is usually a long time between the days when children fall. We will have time."

*

(Excerpts from Toriel's journal)

It is regrettable, but I must teach these children how to fight. The smaller of the two, Sans, will not benefit from traditional armour, so I have taken the liberty of adding speed spells to his clothing. He will have to dodge, and dodge quickly, if he has any hope for survival.

Papyrus is far more able to withstand hurt, but I will do what I can for him to allow his clothing to protect him from harm.

Their first lesson is how to use their magic to deflect an attack from another. The hallway of my cellar seems to be the best place to practice. Not even ghosts come there. But I cannot help but feel a terrible foreboding. Am I training more innocents to die? Am I training more murderers?

I know not which action is for the best. I can only protect what lives I can.

[5] Ask me about my whack theories on Monster reproduction!

====8<====

I figure in this timeline, Gaster becomes a boss monster who's out to capture Pap and Sans before anyone in authority finds out. Pacifist runs convince both him and Alphys to come clean about their abominations of science.
Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 10