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"sure, that anomaly could kill me...or i could freeze to death...or i could fall off a cliff or get mugged walking home or just fall down one day and not get up again. and no matter which one of those things it is, i'm still gonna look the same at the end of it, just like everyone else, piles on the ground. i figured...i'd rather actually do something decent first."Ash is Sans from the Scartale AU, and his role is generally the same as it is in canon. He serves as a guide for the player through the inhospitable wasteland of Scartale, and by the end of the storyline will become either an executioner or an ally depending on the player's actions. He is considered one of the main characters of Scartale, and features heavily in the Scartale Prologue story.
For the Fell variant, see Scarfell Sans.
Ash's personality is similar to canon Sans at first glance but becomes more obviously unique as the player progresses. He still considers himself humorous and loves to make puns, but many of his jokes have a darker and more morbid tone. He is less lazy that most Sanses, but sleeps at odd hours and will frequently disappear for long periods of time.
Ash is relatively emotionally stable most of the time, but when he gets impatient or flustered his behavior becomes more erratic, sometimes to the point of seeming like a different person.
Ash's poor eyesight and difficulty processing emotions leads to a very obvious social awkwardness. He is blunt almost to the point of being tactless, makes jokes at inappropriate times, can get offended over very small things, and has trouble reading facial expressions and body language. Despite this, he still makes an effort to be friendly and likable.
During a Pacifist Run, it is revealed that Ash is self-conscious and has severe dysphoria, which is one of the reasons he refuses to tell people when he's having issues and will refuse the player's offers to help the first several times.
His trademark foods are cinnamon and black coffee, and he's blown up at least one coffeemaker while trying to mix them together.
In the world of Scartale, Gaster is the skeleton brothers' biological father, and Ash is the elder of the two. He is about 4 years old when Gaster is promoted to Royal Scientist and the family moves to the castle, and due to his curiosity Ash becomes aware of his father's less ethical experiments at an early age. At this point, Ash considers it his duty to remain cheerful for Gaster and Papyrus's sake, and this facade of happiness is to serve him well later in life.
Ash is about 10 when the CORE detonates, and on the day of the incident he and Papyrus have snuck into the Lab to show Gaster their crayon drawings; Ash's last sight before being blinded by the blast is of Gaster deliberately sabotaging his machines before being ripped out of existence by the CORE. A well-placed teleportation spell from Gaster sends the two brothers out of the castle into the middle of the surrounding battlefield, seconds before the explosion levels Mt. Ebott.
Ash is found by Ariel, who was also caught in the blast and is wandering the battlefield looking for survivors; they keep each other alive through the ruined landscape and Ariel eventually adopts Ash and Papyrus.
At the time Frisk ends up at the edge of the Ruins, Ash is acting as a sentry in order to keep bystanders from entering the dangerous wastelands surrounding Old Home. He and Papyrus meet Frisk at the borders of Snowdin, and the story progresses similarly to the way it does in canon Undertale.
In a Pacifist Run, Ash leaves Snowdin in order to help Frisk reach Old Home, showing up at odd times in order to offer advice or assistance. He eventually joins Frisk in the castle halls, and his abilities become an integral part of Frisk closing the Void Scar and earning the good ending.
In a Genocide Run, Ash's behavior is colder and more reserved, and he tries to talk the player out of their actions by pointing out how many monsters and humans have died already as a result of the war. As soon as the player kills Papyrus, Ash vanishes from the game but will appear again at random at any time between where the player leaves Snowdin and enters Hotland, where he confronts them with a summoned army of the player's victims in amalgamated forms. This fight cannot be avoided or won and does not end until the player resets, and in order to achieve the Genocide ending the player has to constantly fight these monsters for the rest of the game.
Ash wears his trademark jacket, a long-sleeved top, loose striped pants, and combat boots. He is rarely seen without his armband, which is the Monster Kingdom's crest on a black field.
In Christmas art, Ash is seen wearing a green-and-red striped sweater and a red Santa hat.
Ash's most noticeable visual trait is his eye and facial damage, both a side-effect of the Scartale CORE explosion. Both his eyes are technically a cloudy gray, but one remains constantly lit with blue magic. The cracks at his mouth go quite far back, and when he grins during a Genocide run it can be seen that his jaw actually opens up all the way across his face.
During periods of stress or frustration, Ash's cracks and his left eye begin to leak a blue fluid, and it can drip from his mouth if it builds up too much.
Due to his profession, Ash is often coated in Monster dust, which clings to his clothes and hands.
Ash is considerably shorter than most Sanses, standing at just over 4 feet tall when the average height of a Sans is around 5 feet. He's also a bit lighter than his size would suggest, and other characters frequently pick him up and carry him around.
It's rarely shown, but Ash wears a small golden bird-shaped medal pinned to his shirt, which was given to him by Grillby.
Abilities and Weaknesses
Ash has all the abilities of canon Sans, including blue SOUL attacks, Karmic retribution, bone constructs, "short cuts," and the ability to manipulate the game interface during fights. However, Gaster Blasters take more energy than he's able to keep hold of, and the few Blaster's he's attempted have been unstable, to the point of melting down and disintegrating after only a few attacks.
Because Ash is blind and "sees" with magic, he is capable of viewing SOULs and strong emotional states, sometimes to the point of reading an opponent's intent before a fight even begins. He is technically blind still, though, and has great difficulty seeing normal things; Ash is very nearsighted and has trouble seeing colors or print, and reads and writes Braille in order to avoid a headache.
Ash's eye and his near-death experience have combined to give him an ability unique to himself, the ability to summon and converse with the SOULs of Monsters that have died violently or with unfinished business. He uses a combination of his magic and their own dust to give them form, although they are usually too faint for others to see. During the Genocide Run, Ash summons the monsters that the player has killed, including Toriel, Papyrus, and Undyne, into a form the player can see and continues to attack the player with them until they reset or die; this attack is called "Final Judgement." It is implied in dialogue that the "sentry" job is actually a cover for Ash's real profession, as the Judge of fallen SOULs.
Ash speaks Wingdings, but only in lowercase.
Ash's main weakness is his SOUL, which is fractured into dozens of pieces and held together by Papyrus's empathic abilities. This causes him to have difficulty processing complex emotions, as well as causing several severe psychological issues; in a Genocide Run, after Papyrus dies Ash's SOUL breaks apart, causing a nervous breakdown and his eventual bloodlust and merciless pursuit towards the player.
Ash and Papyrus have a much warmer and more dependent relationship than in the actual game; Ash raises Papyrus from a young age and Papyrus uses his abilities to keep Ash's fractured SOUL intact and relatively functional. Papyrus and Ash have adapted to have strengths that cover each other's weaknesses, and neither of them are fully whole without the other; in Ash's case if he is away from his brother for long periods of time his SOUL begins to destabilize.
During dialogue in Snowdin it is mentioned that the skeleton brothers have a unique fighting style where they use blue magic on each other to boost their speed in combat, and in the final battle of the Pacifist Run they fight as a single unit.
Before the CORE incident, Ash idolized his father, seeing his as a hero who could save the Monster Race. After discovering the experiments his father performed on the fallen human, however, he was forced to evaluate his own sense of justice and ethics.
Ash's memories of Gaster are colored by a childlike idealism and trust, which is constantly at odds with the knowledge that his father is the one who destroyed Mt. Ebott, created the Chara Syndrome virus, and caused the explosion that shattered Ash's SOUL. His feelings are mixed, and can go from one extreme to the other depending on his mood and current mental stability.
Ash first meets Grillby shortly after the war ends, when they are both preteens. They act as each other's emotional support and eventually kindle a romantic relationship that is hinted at during the main storyline. Ash is well-known by the patrons at Grillby's, and during the game, it's shown that he eats there for free.
Ash and Undyne rarely interact, although since they share common ground in hanging out with Papyrus they can be assumed to be on friendly terms. During the Genocide run Ash does not come to Undyne's aid, but whether this is because of an uncaring attitude or his own current breakdown is unclear.
Alphys generally stays in the Hotlands area, so she rarely sees or interacts with the other characters; however, Ash visits her from time to time to share research and findings about SOUL natures and abilities. After the Pacifist Ending during the epilogue, Ash and Alphys interact more often and Ash's help with Alphys's experiments plays an important part in the epilogue's plotline.
Although Ariel raised the skeleton brothers, their close age range leads Ash to consider them as less of a parental figure and more of a mildly annoying older sibling. Although wary around each other at first, especially considering Ari's high LV and body count, Ash and Ari share a mutual respect that translates itself into a playfully antagonistic attitude and a shared love of pranks and bad puns.
Toriel and Ash have a similar relationship as Sans and Toriel do in canon; Ash visits the Ruins often to talk to Toriel through the locked door separating the Ruins from Snowdin, and they share a love of bad jokes. A main difference is that Ash assumes that Toriel is yet another bodiless SOUL like the ones haunting the rest of the area, and is genuinely surprised at the end of the Pacifist Run when he discovers that she is a real living person.
Ash's relationship with the player depends heavily on their actions, and he doesn't interact with them much if they are trying for a Neutral Run. If the player is at a high LV when they exit the Ruins, they will prompt a lecture from Ash about Monsters not wanting to start another war; if the player has not killed anything Ash's attitude will be more pleasant and jovial. Ash is present as a counselor figure throughout the Pacifist Run, sharing tips and dialogue with the player through the game. During a Genocide Run he is less helpful with fewer tips, and much of his dialogue comes off as sarcastic or cynical; once Papyrus is killed he serves as this run's primary antagonist. If a Neutral Run is attempted, Ash is shown being the one who finds the player's body.
After a Reset Ash's dialogue changes drastically, and he often mentions understanding that the player wants to "atone" for their actions, but states that the fallen SOULs still remember what the player has done. This can be attributed to Ash's ability to see SOULs, as it's implied he can view the guilt the player is feeling.
- Ash's mannerisms and body language are partially based on those seen in veterans and refugees who have experienced severe trauma.
- Ash is typically colored using a cool color palette, which often contrasts with the warm palettes used for most of Scartale.
- Ash has several real-life psychiatric issues, including depersonalization disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, psychotic depression, and several milder mood disorders. He also suffers from stress-induced quadriparesis.
- Ash interacts heavily with Seasalt (Companiontale!Sans), due to both their creators being married.
- Ash's voice is soft and mildly scratchy-sounding, and when he raises it his voice takes on a more glitchy and gravelly quality; in text, his voice is Comic Sans with a mild Zalgo overlay, with Wingdings replacing some letters when he gets agitated. His headcanon voice is similar to the Youtuber Cryaotic.
- When Ash sees SOULs and emotions, he's actually seeing the "code" that makes up a character's personality and motivations. The lost SOUL amalgamates he interacts with are pieces of code that haven't been completely erased yet.