Log 5v: Pancakes, Please

The next morning, while Malcolm and the kids were still asleep, there was another knock at the door.

5v-Bri-arrives

It was freakishly early and Edelweiss was weary of this business already, but she reminded herself it was for the greater good and answered. Sort of.

“It’s not locked – go ahead and let yourself in!” shouted Ede without thinking. Plum, Ede – you’re going to wake everyone up.

5v-bri
“Wow! It looks just like the blog!”

The young woman stepped inside and looked around. Not seeing anyone, she called out.

“Um.. hello?”

Still nothing. This was getting kinda creepy.

This is the part where the door slams behind me and all the lights go out, right?
This is the part where the door slams behind me and all the lights go out, right?

“Oh, plum it,” Ede sighed. “Come on in – I’m in the kitchen!”

5v-bri-kitchen-1

“Hey,” said the visitor. “I uh, saw your ad.”

The young woman was nervous, but there was an underlying confidence there that Ede picked up on. She could relate to that. She warmed up a bit.

“My name’s Edelweiss.”

“I’m Brianna. Brianna Clemons,” the girl said. “You’re even prettier in person. This is kind of embarrassing.”

What the plum is she talking about?
In person? What the plum is this kid talking about?

I didn’t put my picture on the flyer, Ede thought. Ede gave her a curious look, but decided she didn’t need to know what that was about right now. “Have you come far?” Ede asked.

Why's she looking at me like that?
Why’s this lady looking at me like I’m crazy?

“Kind of!” Brianna said. “I’m from a town a lot like this one – from another legacy family, the Pruetts. I’m just a cousin though, so you probably wouldn’t know me.”

“I see,” Ede said. It’s not that she wasn’t interested in what Brianna had to say – she was weighing the relevance of each little piece, deciding whether the odd bits needed dropping or keeping – also, when she was in the kitchen her mind tended to roam to another place anyway. “You hungry?”

“Actually, yeah. I’d kill for some pancakes.”

Ede laughed. “I think I can swing that without a blood sacrifice.”

Edelweiss got started on breakfast, and used the time to get to know Brianna a little bit.

5v-cookin-w-Bri

“So tell me about yourself,” Ede smiled. “I can see you’re Self-Assured, but what are you into? What are you hoping to do while you’re here?”

“Well,” Brianna said excitedly, “I’m a huge Art Lover, but what I really want is to master Music. Like, learn everything there is to know. I never had the time or resources to do this back home.”

Ede nodded while she continued to work on breakfast. “Got a favorite instrument?”

“This is gonna sound crazy,” Brianna continued, “but my grandfather was this really amazing musician —  Giancarlo Sheridan, he used to play at arts festivals and stuff — and I feel like I might have inherited some of his talent. When I play the violin it makes me feel like I’m truly, deeply connected to my family history – like I have roots, y’know? Like I’m important. Even though I’m not the heir or anything.”

“Being the heir isn’t that big of a deal,” Ede said.

“Says the heir!” Brianna laughed harshly. Comments like that really ticked her off!

"Typical oblivious heir thing to say!"
Seriously? Typical oblivious heir thing to say!”
"Typically oblivious!"
“Like you would know anything about what it’s like for us.”

“People are gonna remember you at least. It’s not like that for the rest of us extras.”

Dang, this kid was pretty bold considering they’d just met.

Ede smirked involuntarily and focused on the pancakes. She gently slid the spatula under the one she was working on, and flipped it, way harder than necessary.

5v-Bri-omg-why

Brianna eyed it hungrily as it rose into the air, arced and smacked into the kitchen window.

Ede silently poured another pancake and repeated the process. This one just missed the ceiling before landing over next to the sink.

c
“Um..  Are you gonna keep wasting pancakes like that?”

“Almost finished!” Ede said with exaggerated cheer.

Ede stacked a nice high pile of pancakes on the platter. She could almost hear Brianna’s stomach growling. Brianna hadn’t uttered another peep, though.

Ede grabbed herself a plate and took a bite.

"Mmmm, these might be my best work yet."
“Mmmm, these might be my best work yet.”

Brianna just stared with a sad, grumbling sort of confusion.

“Oh, did you want some?” Ede asked with mock innocence.

"If only I had enough to share.."
“If only I had enough to share.. tsk.”

“Now you’re just plumming with me,” Brianna scowled.

Ede grinned and dished her spirited young guest up a plate.

5v-pancakes-3
Okay, Ede liked this kid.

“You were right about the heir comment thing,” Ede conceded once Brianna started eating. “That was a plumhead thing for me to say.”

5v-pancakes-4


Apology accepted
, Brianna thought, but wouldn’t admit. She couldn’t contain a food compliment, though.

“These pancakes rock!” Brianna said as she stuffed her face. Like Ede, she was bone thin no matter how much she ate. She probably had some kind of propensity for physical activity too.

“The violin thing is pretty neat, too,” Ede continued. “You know, the founder of this family was a musician – I didn’t get any of that talent. When we discovered our son is a Music Lover it felt pretty special that way, like something important wasn’t lost after all, and was coming back around – y’know?”

“No plum?” Brianna blurted. “I totally know what you mean, though! That’s awesome!”

Brianna hadn’t known this about the Wolffs before, but learning so now had her feeling confident that she’d made the right decision in coming here. Plus, Edelweiss was kinda cool, for an heir.

"That whole flipping thing  back there was pretty good, by the way."
“That whole flipping thing was pretty good, by the way. Props for that.”

“You’re welcome to stay here at the house for a few days, until you get settled.” Ede offered. “It occurs to me that I didn’t set up any kind of temporary lodging for folks who need time to find roommates and stuff.”

“That would be great, if you’re really okay with it. I’m sure I’ll be able to find something soon.”

“I’m okay with it.” Ede grinned. “You kinda remind me of me.”

Brianna beamed.

“I’m going to go hop in the shower. Please make yourself at home. There’s a guest room straight across from the top of the stairs.”

“Okay – and thank you!”

Ede smiled.

…..

Thanks to pancake goddess Jes2g for Brianna Clemons. ❤

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Log 5u: New Arrivals

Reagan Sloan had already been in town for days when she came across the Wolffs’ “Settlers Wanted” recruitment flyer.

Oh no.. I hope nobody I know comes.
Uh oh..

Reagan came from a place not entirely unlike the one she’d immigrated to, but with one significant difference: where she was from, nearly everyone was Game-Aware. They knew they weren’t “real” people, but digital representations of people made up of zeros and ones, and they somehow understood the mechanics of their game-universe well enough to manipulate them.

Back home, she’d lived mostly in the background, occasionally mistaken for someone important. Here, the local versions of everyone she’d known were long dead.

“More than dead — dead and culled,” Reagan thought aloud.

The Goth mansion, where she’d served as a maid not long ago, stood empty; their proud bloodline faded to dust just beyond reach of the typical single-minded focus of a Legacy Player.

And Oakenstead, the lot that once held the sprawling estate of the wealthy, oft-misunderstood Landgraab family, now bore the somewhat-less-sprawling estate of the 5th generation legacy family whose save game she’d willingly relocated to — the founder of which had bulldozed the Landgraab’s occupied house to the ground in her first few hours of existence.

“Just can’t catch a break, can you Geoffrey?” she smiled, recalling the awkwardness of her former acquaintance.

Why the melancholy, and why hadn’t she introduced herself to her hosts? Reagan wasn’t Gloomy. She wasn’t a Snob, or a Loner.

"I'm not depressed; this sandwich just tastes like plum."
“I’m not depressed; this sandwich just tastes like plum.”

She hadn’t planned it to play out this way — she certainly didn’t set out to be secretive — but ever since arriving here Reagan had felt like keeping a low profile. She hadn’t come across a single overtly Game-Aware sim here yet. While it might sound creepy, being somewhere where folks went about their days without realizing the true limitations of their own existence, Reagan discovered that she actually liked it. She found that she could relax and enjoy being in a place where the average person wasn’t obsessed with subverting their own mortality or concerned with conspiracy webs and epic wars between good and evil.

"And you've really never heard of culling?"
“And you’ve really never heard of culling?”
"Nope. Is that anything like cuddling?"
“No ma’am. Is that anything like cuddling?”

Was it wrong to just want to be a regular old ignorant person-sim? You know, live a life. Die a death. Start a family somewhere in between, maybe, if she was lucky. Let someone else worry about the world beyond the world, for a change.

Reagan was doing pretty well for herself here, besides. Got herself a cute little house. Made headway on her Collector aspiration. Went on a few dates. Even found a quirky live-in boyfriend who was tolerable enough, and seemed perfectly willing to help with her other goals.

5u reagan 3
It’s refreshing to be with someone as clumsy as I am.
5u reagan 5
The li’l ferret-face really is a great kisser, too.
5u reagan 6
And I have no complaints whatsoever here.

The Wolffs did seem like decent folks, though. She’d already met Malcolm by accident, and he appeared to be as genuinely kind in “person” as he was in the blog. Of course, she didn’t tell him anything about her origin or the metaphysics of the Simverse. As far as he knew she was just another local townie who may or may not still be here in the morning.

5u meeting m

She’d come clean to them eventually.

Or, maybe she wouldn’t.

Why walk out of the garden of Eden?
I think I’ll just stay in Eden a wee bit longer, if that’s okay.

The Skinners, on the other hand, weren’t at all shy about announcing their presence. The Wolff estate was their first stop the moment they left the Gallery.

5u skinners arrive

5u skinners arrive 1
Ravon Skinner: Cheerful, Outgoing, Snob – Aspiration: Big Happy Family

The woman who entered was a knockout. She had an almost Bella-like charm about her – that disarming, stand-out kind of beauty that you can’t really recreate in CAS.

“Hello, Mrs. Wolff? I’m Ravon Skinner, and this is my husband Joel.”

Ravon Skinner: Cheerful, Outgoing, Snob - Aspiration: Big Happy Family
Oh look, they have an.. With a.. Oh, my..

Ravon lost her happy face midway through the greeting, when her eyes rested on the rustic, mismatched bits of our eclectic decor.

Ede gave a quick half-smile and motioned to Malcolm to take over – home visits from strangers made her a bit surly, and this one seemed like it was gonna be extra-challenging.

“Malcolm Presley,” he introduced himself. “Welcome to Willow Creek.”

The Skinners hailed from Skinnerville, and were offshoots of another established legacy family. As they weren’t the heirs, they didn’t need to remain there — Ravon and Joel just wanted to settle somewhere to raise their own Big Happy Family.

“Somewhere where our contribution will be fully appreciated,” added Ravon with a glowing smile. “We’re very excited to be able to help with your little..” her voice dimmed to a whisper, “population problem.”

The Skinners were looking for housing today. Joel described their needs to Malcolm, and summarized that he would be happy with anything that was clean and had room for his studies and their future children.

Us Neat, Family-Oriented Bookworms are pretty easy to please.
“So Neat, Family-Oriented, Bookworm? Got it.”

“Oh!” Joel remembered, “and I’ll need room for a rocket too.”

Malcolm laughed. “For something so massive, it’s easy to misplace those things, isn’t it?”

5u joel
“A library and a rocket.. Lemme guess – you’re the Nerd Brain of the family?”

Simple enough request, though. Joel seemed pretty easy-going – Malcolm could see the two of them developing a natural friendship. Ravon’s tastes, however, were a little more discerning.

“I’m sure you can see that we’re expecting,” Ravon appealed to Cooper, likely able to sense her Family-Oriented nature.

x
“These are going to be Skinner children.”
"So our home needs to be.. presentable."
“So our home needs to be.. presentable.”
"Not that there's anything wrong with other children!"
“Not that there’s anything wrong with your house! Or your children! Or, grandchildren.. whatever!”

The room fell into an awkward silence. Malcolm froze as he watched Cooper’s mouth begin to twist into a familiar pre-explosive grin.

5u uht oh

5u help me
Oh, plum.

“I think I know just the place!” said Malcolm quickly, before Cooper could show herself, and ushered the Skinners outside just in time.

He brought Joel and Ravon to Umbrage Manor, which was pretty much the fanciest unoccupied home in the neighborhood.

“Here we are,” Malcolm said. “What do you think?”

For some reason Ravon’s eyes were stuck on Malcolm.

5u ravon and joel

5u hey stop that
Erm..

“The house, Mrs. Skinner?” Malcolm poked, “Do you like it?”

5u skinner house

“Oh. Oh!” she squealed, finally seeing it.

"It's just perfect!"
“It’s just perfect! Thank you, Malcolm!”

“You can thank your husband for that,” Malcolm redirected gently. “He gave the specs. I just walked us here.”

Fine, if he doesn't want my attention..
Fine, if you don’t want my attention..

5u ravon yay 2

Joel went inside to check the place out, while Malcolm looked for an opportunity to politely excuse himself and Ravon took a moment to lay down some guidelines for the use of her new sidewalk with her new neighbor.

"I appreciate your fashion sense, but if you'll kindly do your jogging on the other side of the street.."
“Your workout outfit looks great! But, from now on, I would prefer you do your jogging on the other side of the street.. Thank you.”

Jarrett, not sure how to react to this, traded “I dunno, man” glances with Malcolm and then crossed the street to continue his jog.

And Mrs. Skinner walked slowly up the stairs and into her new home, her eyes fixed on Malcolm the whole way.

It's like watching Jessica Rabbit leave the room.
It’s like watching Jessica Rabbit leave the room. 

Malcolm returned home to find his own dangerously beautiful wife waiting up for him.

“How’d it go?” Ede asked.

“Good. They’re all settled now – just across the street from Easter and Jarrett, actually.” Malcolm said.

5u home

“Ooh, you’re all knotted up.” Ede dug her thumbs into her husband’s tight shoulder muscles.

“That was.. somewhat awkward,” he admitted. “The wife seemed awfully friendly toward me at the end there.”

“Maybe it’s the pregnancy hormones,” Ede offered.

“I hope so,” he laughed, relaxing a bit.

"I'm fairly certain I didn't say or do anything to bring that on."
“I’m fairly certain I didn’t say or do anything to give her the wrong impression.”

“Either hormones or she’s been ensorcelled by your sweet ass,” Ede teased. “If it happened to me, it can happen to anyone!”

Malcolm almost choked. “Not funny!”

“Aw..” Ede pouted playfully. “C’mere.”

“I’ll protect your virtue,” she whispered into his ear.

5u home 1
“You’re having a bit too much fun, here.”

“You enjoy this, don’t you,” Malcolm said.

“Only this part,” she smiled.

5u home 3

Thanks to bilmonaghan for Reagan Sloan and to aroseinbloom for Ravon and Joel Skinner.

Log 5t: Totally Nuclear

Dunno why, but this little family is the most “unit-like” I’ve had yet. The four of them gravitate together like drops of oil in a cup of water.

On an average morning, the littles bond over breakfast at the bar to dad’s piano tunes while mom bones up on mixology for work, and it’s the most natural thing in the world.

5t family
The twins are pals now.
Ede still needs to practice her drink making skills a bit, ha.
Ede still needs to practice her drink making skills a bit, ha.

The kidlets’ birthday was fortuitously timed – they only had two school days before the weekend came and liberated them from homework. But being the motivated little peanuts they are, they wasted no time in knocking out aspirational milestones.

Keyboard commander on one side, nails on chalkboard on the other.
Keyboard commander on one side, chalkboard nails on the other.

Stages one and two of both aspirations were completed with ease. Stage 3, for Forsythia, required a jaunt to the park to make it across the monkey bars a few times. Fennel probably would’ve been perfectly content to stay home and doodle, but we felt he would benefit from the fresh air and some time to regain his hearing, so they made the trip together.

Sweet!
Forsythia eyes the play structures hungrily.

For a Saturday, the park was strangely empty. Fennel meandered over to snack on an abandoned hot dog, said hello to a couple old dudes playing chess, got bored and went home. But Forsythia was determined to play for a while, even if it was by herself.

She did her obligatory monkey-barring, and then pirated her own ship. She imagined she’d just wrested control of it from a would-be mutineer and his cronies, throwing the disloyal overboard so she could keep all of the booty herself.

5t lone pirate
“See how ya like Davy Jones’ locker, ya traitorous worms!”

She was feeling top-of-the-worldish until she spied something freaky gurgling just off deck.

5t  freaky Minette

"Holy plum!"
“Holy plum!”

She’d been so cloaked in her own imagination that having another actual person suddenly appear in her ‘game’ was too much! She booked it outta there — not ’cause she was scared, you know, she just needed to go. Like, now.

5t park 3
“Don’t look back. Don’t look back!”

Meanwhile, back at home, someone had gone back to channeling tormented cats.

5t screeching
Maybe it’s just this instrument.. I can’t still be this bad.

Forsythia could hear them from the tub, but her mind was still on the sea.

The twins finished the day by sneaking in an action film while their parents snuck some alone time.

5t mummies

"Man! That guy better run!"
“Ha ha! Man! That guy better run!”

The next morning at breakfast, the kids had something they wanted to discuss.

“Have you noticed that nobody actually lives here in town?” Fennel asked his parents. “Besides our cousins and that one neighbor family, I mean.”

5t ghost town
“It’s kind of like there’s something secret going on out there. Something big.”

I noticed!” Forsythia said, moving down to her parents’ end of the table for maximum impact. “I had to play with some freaky lady at the park yesterday. Where are all the kids?”

"She was clearly not normal."
“She was clearly not normal.”

Malcolm chuckled. “That ‘freaky lady’ is your next door neighbor, you know.”

Forsythia shrugged, and then squinted. “She seemed awfully natural playing sea monster. I mean she came out of nowhere.”

“To address the original question, though,” Malcolm said, “I’m not sure why people stopped moving in. When I worked for the postal service, they told us there were strict rules about the number of people allowed to live here. So we would be in a place for a very short while and then move on. I had to quit so that I could stay with your mom. But, if that’s still happening with all the houses empty.. that doesn’t seem to be working as intended.”

“Or maybe it is,” said Fennel forebodingly.

"I'm not saying it was aliens, but.."
“I’m not saying it was aliens, but..”

“Whatever the reason,” Ede said, trying to reign in the creativity a tad, “Maybe there’s something we can do about it. I know I’m not the most social person around, but I’d much rather have a chance to befriend someone once in a while than be exposed to a constant stream of strangers.”

Malcolm thought for a moment. “What if we actually recruited some people to come and live here?”

"Well, it beats doing nothing."
“Sometimes the simplest answer is the correct one.”

“I like simple,” said Ede. “How do we do it?”

“We write up an advertisement, maybe?” he said. “We could offer help with moving expenses, job placement, that kind of thing.”

“Could that actually work?” Fennel asked. He seemed interested too, now.

"It's a starting point."
“It’s a starting point.”

“Can’t hurt to try,” Malcolm said.


Ede was certainly willing to give it a try, so she sat down after breakfast and began to draft up a little flyer.

“Can we request some entertainers that can actually play instruments?” asked Fennel.

“And some more kids!” added Forsythia.

Ede incorporated everyone’s wishes and showed them all what she had:


WANTED: SETTLERS!
Calling all
Artists, Performers, Culinary Talent,
Families, Friends;
Anyone in Search of a New Start
or a Place to Call Home!
We can provide:
Career Placement
Moving Expenses
Help Achieving Aspirations

Contact E Wolff or M Presley . Oakenstead . Willow Creek


“Should I do the thing with the little tear-away strips of paper and the phone number?” Ede wondered.

“If you want,” Malcolm smiled. “Probably just an email address would suffice.”

“I’ll do both,” she grinned.


In addition to posting the flyer online, Ede printed some out and she and Forsythia went and tacked them up around town.

5t here goes nothin

“So what do we do now?” Forsythia asked.

5t alrighty

“We wait.”

…….

Ed. Note: If your Sims would like a chance to relocate to our save game, drop me a note by commenting here or on the forums to let me know how to find ya. I probably won’t add a billion sims at once, but if I feel like yours are a good fit I’ll gradually work them in. 🙂

Log 5s: Room to Grow

Life seemed particularly grand for Edelweiss and Malcolm. So much so that they felt like they were getting away with something. They were happier than they’d ever been.

Being apart for part of the day made their together time that much sweeter. It was somewhat difficult to concentrate on housework, but I suppose that bit was nothing new. 🙂

I miss seeing you all day.
“Kinda hard to do the dishes when you do that, Malcolm.”
You smell nice.
“But you smell nice.”

“You do dishes all day at work,” said Malcolm. “Let me get these.”

“I won’t stop you,” Ede surrendered easily. Dishes were not her favorite. “Meet you upstairs?”

5s dishes 3

It was a special day – their littles were graduating from the bassinet. Malcolm finished up the dishes and went up to spend a precious last few moments with baby-them.

I think I'm going to miss these baby toes.
Even the grump smiles for Daddy

And then it was time. They each monitored one kid ~ Forsythia began to change first.

5s forsy 1

Edelweiss got so excited, she had to turn away.

5s forsy 2
Whatever she looks like, the girl that emerges from that hamster ball will always be beautiful to me.

5s forsy 3

And poof! Out Forsythia pops, wearing a hat a lot like her pop’s. ;D

5s Forsy 4

She rolled the Good trait (uht oh – Grandma might not like that) and the Rambunctious Scamp aspiration.

Somehow young Forsythia didn’t get the memo that she was a twin – when her brother started to sparkle, her fantasy of being an only child began to crumble.

Who the heck is that?
Wait.. Who the heck is that?
5s fennel
“Guys? There is clearly another child here.”

5s fennel 2

Fennel rolled the Music Lover trait and the Artistic Prodigy aspiration. He didn’t share his sister’s sibling discomfort (I’ll never understand how/why that works), so he didn’t get what the big deal was.

Ede tried to put her daughter’s mind at ease.

5s who the heck is that 2
“Brothers can be really cool and fun – you’ll see!”
Someone is not entirely convinced.
Someone is not entirely convinced.

Forsythia eventually gave up her grump and decided to delay judgment, for now. Fennel, aware that he’d obviously missed something, looked to his pop for guidance.

Should I be worried?
Should I be worried, Dad?
Naw, you got this.
Naw. You got this, son.

Malcolm and Fennel gave the girls some space & took some time to get to know each other better. Malcolm was super excited to have a music lover in the family!

"If you're interested in learning to play piano, I can teach you a few songs."
“This is really great! I can teach you piano, or violin!”

This was nearly all autonomous, by the way. It was so cute. I thought I might die. But, I didn’t. Whew.

The kids were both hungry as heck, so they tactfully freed themselves from the loving attention of their respective parent and returned to their scene of entry: the kitchen.

At first they just sat together in silence, but Fennel couldn’t help but crack a joke. Then Forsythia offered a heartfelt compliment. And before long they were sharing huge smiles with their huge slices of cheesecake.

5s cheesecake yay
Maybe this won’t be so bad after all.

Log 5r: Two in the Kitchen

The Wolff family has once again been gifted with twins: A snuggly little boy called Fennel, and a fussy little girl called Forsythia.

Though we’d managed to get Ede to the hospital in time for the births, for some reason the game plopped the bassinets into the kitchen. But that didn’t stop the proud papa from doting.

Papa is amazed at the intact little human in his arms.
Malcolm is amazed at the intact little sleepy human in his arms.

5f dont cook baby

Couldn’t quite reach the wailing one, so we went ahead and moved them upstairs. ;D

Mama is amused that this baby may be even grumpier than she was.
Edelweiss is amused that this scowly little beauty may be even grumpier than she was.

And since I never did properly share Malcolm’s stats when he joined the family, here those are for folks that like to see that sort of thing. 🙂 ~

Malcolm Presley - Gen 5 Mate
Best Mailman Evar

Malcolm Presley
Generation 5 Mate

Traits: Cheerful, Outgoing, Creative
Aspiration: Fabulously Wealthy

Malcolm came with 4 in logic, 3 in charisma, piano and cooking, and a bunch of other skills in the 1-2 range.

Brown hair, light brown eyes, average/fit build, med/light skintone. He’s a few days younger than Edelweiss.


Something about being a mother has bolstered Ede’s self-assuredness and put her back into perpetual confidence mode. This seems to negate the restrictive aspects of her Loner trait almost entirely. Whether from the priority shift of new parenthood, or the fact that they were both nearing the end of their young adult life stages, both she and her husband Malcolm have had careers on their minds.

5r what if

Edelweiss pondered her options while she prepared to try out a new recipe she’d just learned – Sim City Cheesecake. Malcolm came to watch her; they did a lot of their conversing in the kitchen these days.

5r kitchen talk

“Mom said that she wants to retire after her next promotion so she can spend more time with the kids,”  Ede said to Malcolm as she stirred her batter. “That’ll be any day now, and they’ll be starting school soon. I think it would be a good time for us to try careers of our own, if we wanted to.”

5r careers
“I suppose I could give that business thing a whirl,” he smiled, distracted. Whatever she was making, it smelled great!

5r confidence

Edelweiss poured the batter into the mold and set her cheesecake to bake.

“Only if you don’t need me around the house, I mean,” Malcolm added as they waited for the oven timer to go off. Malcolm was happy and did pretty well just handling the estate, but he’d whipped our finances into shape quickly and part of him really yearned for new challenges.

“Well, I hope to be off somewhere myself, too” she said, “and the kids will either be at school or mom will be here.” Ede had already developed her cooking to level 8 on her own, gourmet to 6, and was constantly creating amazing meals. She was curious how much further she could develop her talent if she made it a serious, job kind of thing.

5r careers 1
“Go on, give it a taste.”

Malcolm was happy to oblige. It was a good thing they’d kept the home gym – although Ede seemed to be immune to weight gain, Malcolm was not, and he wasn’t about to give up taste testing!

5r careers 2

Holy plum! That's good!
“Holy plum! That’s good!!”

“The world is missing out on something without you in the culinary career,” Malcolm said. “This tastes incredible.”

5r careers 5
“It tastes like it was created by the gods to tempt mortals.”

Ede beamed. That’s what she was thinking, too.

5r careers 4
“Yeah, I’ve been feeling like I’m pretty plumming awesome at this lately, too.”

“It’s decided then?” he asked. “We’ll get jobs?”

“Let’s do it!” she said. “Staplers and cheesecake for the whole world!”

Log 5q: Straw Into Gold

Like many pregnant gals the world over, Edelweiss Wolff was looking through a book for baby name ideas. But her particular choice of book was, perhaps, a wee bit unorthodox.

Ede reads from A Green Thumb's Guide to Flowering Plants
Ede reads from “A Green Thumb’s Guide to Flowering Plants”

“I would get ‘F'” Ede grumped aloud. “Fuschia? That sounds like a drag queen, even for a girl.”

"How about 'Freakin' Flower' - that work?"
“How about ‘Freakin’ Flower’ – that work?”

“Got something against drag queens?” Malcolm smirked as he sat down next to her.

“Oh right, I forgot about your fascination with my girly clothes,” Ede teased.

Malcolm chuckled.

“I don’t have anything against drag queens, no,” she said seriously. “I just feel like we need to give our child a name they can mold into something for themselves, you know? Something flexible that doesn’t already sound like it’s gonna be something else.”

Malcolm nodded thoughtfully.

“Maybe this tradition of naming after flowering plants can be revised,” Ede continued. “I mean, I wouldn’t exactly call my name fitting. Everyone just calls me Ede anyway.” Ede paused. “Everyone except you. Why is that, anyway?”

"I've always wondered."
“I don’t mind it, but, I’ve always wondered.”

“Why do I call you Edelweiss?” Malcolm thought for a moment. “Out of respect, I guess,” he shrugged.

Ede didn’t catch his meaning, so he continued.

“I like your name very much. It’s contrary to how you seem at first, but I think it does capture you quite well.”

Them sounded like fightin' words, partner.
Them sound like fightin’ words, partner.

“What’s that supposed to mean?” she scowled.

Malcolm chuckled again. “That! The glaring and the punchiness! How you guard yourself. Takes a while to reach the delicate flower in there.”

Ede’s scowl turned into a sigh. Great, now he’s making fun of me.

5q hear me out
“That wasn’t an insult – let me explain.”

Malcolm continued. “Edelweiss grows high in alpine cliffs – one of the harshest geographical regions, where you would least expect to find a delicate, unassuming flower. Yet, there it is. Because of its isolation, most people will never get to see one. People have died trying.”

Ede chuckled a bit at that. She’d never actually killed anyone.

“You’re making me a bit tingly, now.” Ede smiled softly.

Malcolm smiled back. “I suppose,” he continued gently, “when I say your name, I feel like I’m honoring you. The cliffs, the snow, and the crazy little flower that somehow exists in all that. I’m letting you know that I see it.”

5q was that better

5q now youre just being sweet
“We don’t have to stick with the flower naming convention for our child though, if you don’t want to.”

Ede didn’t say anything. She got up from the table, as did Malcolm.

5q cmere
“You’re doing that unsettling thing where you don’t speak again.. heh.”
5q cmere 2
Sweetest man on the planet.

Ede decided to attempt to stick with the tradition after all, and went to the lab to peruse the information database for other flower names. But late-term pregnancy messes with your attention span something awful, and it wasn’t long before she got distracted.

It feels so good when the blocks fit together just so!
It feels so good when the blocks fit together just so!

“Oh my god!” Ede proclaimed when she landed in her email after a riveting round of Blikblock.

“What is it?” asked Malcolm, who had been downstairs exercising.

That little punk is getting married!

"I can't believe it!"
“I can’t plumming believe it!”

“Who now?”

“My brother – like, soon! We need to RSVP in the next couple days.”

“Oh, that little punk,” Malcolm chuckled. “Good for him! That was fast.”

“Yeah!” Ede said, but thought a moment and corrected herself. “Actually — you know, it really isn’t.” She laughed. “He’s been gearing up for this his whole life.”

“Are we going to try to go?” Malcolm asked. He hoped he’d done an adequate job of masking his wish that she would want to stay home and not stress herself at this point in her pregnancy – they were expecting the baby to come any day now. If Edelweiss wanted to go, though, he’d make that happen for her regardless of his worrying.

5q lab

Edelweiss didn’t answer right away. When she thought of traveling in her current state, she did not feel very safe. Plus, weddings. Ugh. Her own wedding was the only one she’d been to in her entire life (and Legacy brats go to a lot of weddings) that didn’t make her extremely grumpy, and who wants grumpy guests? Was she gonna be that jerk who stinkeyes the bride the whole ceremony? The person who stands right by the arch, stomping and glaring?

5q lab 1

“I don’t know,” she finally said with a sigh.

But, she did know of something special that she could do that wouldn’t require her physical presence.

“Can you help me find something?” Ede asked Malcolm.

“Of course,” he said.


As part of the house remodel, Ede’d had her father’s old bedroom re-envisioned into a study, and most of his literary works were nestled in the shelves. There was a certain book that Dia had written a long time ago, when Elder first gained the Soulmates aspiration. Ede remembered Malcolm commenting on it back when he was helping her sort out the estate, but she couldn’t remember the title. She wanted to make sure that book got to him now.

5q where is it

It didn’t take Malcolm long to find it.

5q admiration
Good call, old man.

“Here it is,” said Malcolm, handing Ede the tome. “‘Two Into One.’ It’s a collection of romantic poetry.”

Ede sat down and read the dedication on the first page aloud:

"For Elder. May you find the one to hold your heart."
“For Elder. May you find the one to hold your heart.”
Oh, Dad..
Oh, Dad..

It was a bittersweet thing, coming across this now, but it was clear from Ede’s face that she’d rested on the sweet part this time.

“You’re here to pass this gift along at just the right moment,” Malcolm smiled, pulling her into a hug.

5q its okay

He held her gently, adjusting his body so that it cradled her full belly. His embraces now included both her and the baby intentionally; it was comforting and sweet. Ede really just wanted to stay home with Malcolm and make a warm safe space for their baby. She was happy for her brother, and loved him more than almost anything, but she was a Loner, and she was pregnant, for plumsakes — and that last part was serious stuff.

5q can we just stay here
I truly do not want to go to this thing.

“Do you think he’ll forgive me if I just send the book along with mom and Easter? And stay home with you to meet our baby instead?”

I'm so glad you said that.
I’m so glad you said that.

“Of course he will,” said Malcolm, quite relieved.

Log 5p: A Palace Fit For a Wolf and Her Presley

With the pending arrival of generation six, we felt a sudden need to rush the rebuild so that we could throw a wedding ASAP. So after much staring and drooling-on-self, the homestead has an exterior!

Full roof coverage! Huzzah!
Full roof coverage! Huzzah!

The interior still needs work. *laugh* For some reason I keep wanting to use items that aren’t from the same “set” and so have just-different-enough colors to not look that swell when you put them together. And then, when I go to color the walls, there is much humbuggery. So for now there’s just naked brick everywhere and the furniture needs color tuning. I’ll get there, though, dangit!

Revamped living/entertaining area.
It’s a much more functional space, at least.

The house is quite large still, but the overall footprint is way down. Previously almost all ground space on the entire lot was taken up.  Now we have plenty of room to put in trees and other naturey things.

Front lot view. Tons of empty space again, yay!
Front lot view, ready for landscaping (only barely started that part).
Look at all that empty space, yay!
Back view. Look at all that empty space, yay!

I put all the sciencey bits in a laboratory/gym in the back corner of the lot. We’ve got nearly every Secret Agent item in there, most Astronaut thingies, some aliens. You know, sciencey stuff.  Moved the graveyard over, though I may redesign it to be more organic-looking once I do the landscaping.

Managed to shave about 8000 off the bills doing this already! We’re down to a sweet 9972, and that’s before going through and liquidating the collections. BOOYEAH. Thank you for the inspiration, Malcolm!


But anyway. Let’s get on with that wedding, shall we?

On the day of Edelweiss and Malcolm’s nuptials, Ede decided that she’d go DIY style as much as possible. For her wedding attire, she chose a very simple gown in light blue with tiny flowers at the shoulder. She set about baking her cake in said gown, without an apron! What a rebel.

5p caking

She was stirring along minding her own business when a familiar, familial head of hair strutted on by.

Brother stops in
Li’l brother displays his mastery of the loving smirk.

Ede nearly dropped her batter.

“Elder! What are you doing here? I thought you were still at that leadership thing!”

“I wouldn’t miss your wedding,” he said sweetly, giving her a quick peck on the cheek. “Besides, I had to come and meet this mystery man who changed my steely big sister’s worldview, ” Elder teased. “He must be fine.”

“The finest,” Ede admitted.

“Describe him to me,” Elder said, expecting body measurements – perhaps a flowery description of his flowing hair, or some personality quirk she found stimulating.

“He’s incredibly smart, funny, and kind. He’s humble and he’s strong. And even though he really knows me, for some plumming reason I think he actually likes me.”

Elder could swear she was actually blushing. He was beyond touched by this, and didn’t want to spoil it by making fun. Instead he pushed up his sleeves, ready to help with food prep.

“So what are we cooking, boss?”

5p siblings 2

“I’m just finishing up the cake,” Ede said. “Wanna make some snacks or something for the guests? Just whatever you feel like.”

Elder got right to work.

5p siblings 3

“Grilled cheese, eh?” Ede asked, amused. “That’s your idea of wedding cuisine?”

“Warm and gooey, just like your heart,” Elder teased.

Ede laughed. “I can still kick your ass, you know.”

“That’d be quite the sight in your current condition.”

“I know,” she smirked. “I imagine you’ll be extra humiliated when it happens.”

Elder flashed that golden smile of his and Ede couldn’t help but smile too. She’d really missed that punkass kid. ❤

With her two favorite fellas around, Edelweiss was on cloud 9. I can say with confidence that it was probably the happiest day of her life so far. Yeah, there were tons of people and it was the corniest thing ever, but she didn’t mind at all.

5p blushing bride

While the dearly beloved loosened up a bit, we finished assembling an impromptu little wedding space in a flowery back corner of the lot. It looked quite nice, the bride thought.

This outdoorsy girl finds stump tables hella charming. ;D
This outdoorsy girl finds stump tables hella charming. ;D

Ede just had to position the last guest, and then she and Malcolm had a chance to chat a little while they waited for the others to congregate at the scene.

“Isn’t it bad luck for us to meet like this?” Malcolm teased.

5p hey baby
Luck’s got nothing on us, baby.

“Screw that,” Ede flirted. “I do what I want.”

Suddenly Malcolm noticed the special guest.

The minnow they caught together.
The minnow they caught the first time they fished together has become Ede’s treasured pet.

“You dragged the fish out here?” Malcolm beamed.

“I was aiming for ‘gently carried,’ or as close to that as a super-pregnant waddle will allow, anyway.” Ede smiled.

Ede's fondess for that fish is Malcolm's Achilles heel.
Ede’s fondness for that fish is Malcolm’s Achilles heel.

“I love you,” he said with urgency.

“And I you,” she smiled. “Shall we get this show on the road? My back is killing me and I’m not sure how much longer I can not-give-birth.”

I think this writhing beast of ours would really like to meet us soon.
“I think this writhing beast of ours would really like to meet us soon.”
5p hey baby 2
“Soon? Like soon, soon?”

Edelweiss had been experiencing an additional level of discomfort for the last couple hours and was afraid that the baby might be anxious to attend the wedding, so they made their way to the arch and began the ceremony post haste.


All in all it was a heartwarming affair. Not to say that there wasn’t a heaping helping of heckling at the wedding. It’s just that nobody paid it any mind. This life was theirs to live, naysayers be damned. ;D

"A pregnant monk?!"
“A pregnant monk?! That’s not a thing!”
5p landon 1
This is outrageous!

Some kid, Joel, was cracking a scowl in the corner of the camera’s eye the whole time. Dunno why. But it was funny, because Ede often went around like that at parties when she was young.

Another Loner, perhaps?
Another Loner, perhaps?

Poor Cooper just couldn’t contain her emotions, nor her dire need for a shower.

5p i always cry at weddings
Flarn is just happy he finally has an excuse to wear his cool bowtie.

I’m the only one who noticed those folks, though. Edelweiss and Malcolm only saw each other. Ede improv’d her own vows.

5p the vows

“My heart is yours, for as long as you’ll have it,” she promised.

"And anything else you want to bother with, too."
“And any other parts of mine you want to bother with, too.”

Malcolm remembered the ring.

"No swallowing this one either, please!"
“No swallowing this one either, please!”

And they kissed, for the billionth time. And it was fabulous.

5p the kiss

5p the kiss 2

<3
Once more, just to be sure. ❤

After the ceremony, Elder took time to prod Malcolm a bit. Partly because it’s the protective-brotherly thing to do, but mostly because he was curious at what force of nature it took to break through his sister’s self-imposed isolation.

“So,” Elder mused, “you’ve gone and done what no man was thought capable of.”

“And what’s that?” Malcolm smirked.

5p elder m 1

“Made my sister actually fall in love!”

Malcolm chuckled softly. “She’s done a number on me, as well.”

Hmm, so far so good. “Of course,” Elder continued, “nobody actually makes my sister do anything.”

“And I wouldn’t dream of trying,” said Malcolm sincerely.

The two chatted for a good long while. They got along famously. Elder was a bit easier to talk to than Jarrett, so Malcolm was really enjoying the interaction for a change.

5p bros
“And you’re having a kid, too – that’s great!”

But he was also anxious to wrap up so he could spend some alone time with his bride, and wanted to make sure they got to catch up first.

5p elder m 3
“Great to meet you, man.”

“I’d better let the bride get some face time in,” Malcolm said, excusing himself with a wink.

Edelweiss sat down beside her brother. Her belly had calmed down finally, thank goodness.

“I like him,” Elder smiled. “He’s great.”

“He really is. I’m very happy.”

5p so its true

It sure was nice to see Elder again. But Ede sensed that he still had some traveling to do.

“So what’s next for you?” she asked. “Going back to the desert?”

“Nah,” he smiled.  “I have some unfinished business to tend to elsewhere.”

Ede could tell there was more to that than what he was sharing. She elbowed him in the ribs playfully. “Some personal unfinished business?”

"I know you. This is a love thing, isn't it?"
“I know you. This is a soulmates thing, isn’t it?”

He just smiled and shrugged his shoulders.

5p who can say
“It’s a longshot, but..”

“Who can say what will come? I only know that I need to follow my heart right now. Something happened that gave me the opportunity to do that, so I’m taking a chance.”

Yup, that sounded like a soulmates thing. Ede was ok with that stuff today. Why the heck not?

Ede smiled. “Try and write me this time, will ya?”

Log 5o: I’ll Huff and I’ll Puff

Most of the house is gone!  Blown down, if you will. ;D  I moved the rooms I want to keep to the front of the lot, and now I’m staring at the empty space feeling some trepidation about rebuilding it, but if I take it slow it should be alright.. Right? Right?? *panic, flail*

Somebody still doesn't know what they're doing.
Somebody still doesn’t know what they’re doing. >.<

To get away from the racket, Edelweiss had grabbed her fiance and gone over to see her sister Easter Lily and her family. It was about time for her niece Amina to emerge from the cradle and Ede was hoping to catch it.

The powers that be permitted us to age up the wee one ourselves on the visit – neat!

The legacy of squint-eye persists in the sparelings.
The legacy of shrink-eye persists in the sparelings.

Poor Amina has inherited her pop’s teeny weeny eyeballs. Hopefully she’ll inherit mom’s marvelous bum to even it out a bit. 😀  We still have no idea what her traits are — she’s not been very forthcoming about that in conversation. But she’s a very animated child, and she loves her auntie Ede!

"We totally have the same hair - that's cool!"
“We have the same hairstyle – that’s super cool!”

We did get something of a family tree with the patch. Unfortunately, all ancestors from gens 1-3 have already been culled, so it’s not a very large tree. More like a Charlie Brown Christmas one. Ah, well – we shall feed it and tend it and it’ll fill out in no time. 🙂

But, back to the house! Ede had been feeling off for days now, and although she could attribute most of it to stress and lack of sleep, there was something different on this particular day. Her senses were on overdrive.

Mmmm.
Mmmm.

“Damn, you smell good,” Ede told Malcolm.

Seriously! I wish you guys could smell this!
“Seriously! I wish you guys could smell this!”

“Thanks,” he laughed. “But I haven’t done anything out of the ordinary.”

“Well you always smell good,” Ede admitted, “But today you’re like extra good. What is that other smell, though?” she asked with a crinkle of the nose.

Malcolm shrugged. Easter kept a very clean house, and he honestly didn’t smell anything. So Ede went wandering around the house, following her nose.

“Is that you, frog?” she asked the twins’ pet while Jarrett attempted to regale Malcolm with tales of valor at the horseshoe pit.

"But it was a dead shoe. So then I pitched a ringer! "
“But it was a dead shoe! So then I swung low and pitched a ringer!”

There was a glittery epiphany at the frog tank, and suddenly Edelweiss knew precisely what her problem was. Though she knew it would do nothing to aid this particular dilemma, her impulse was to run and hide; she did the best she could in that regard, scooting over to the balcony to think.

It didn’t take Malcolm long to find her.

4o oops

“Edelweiss?”

“We have a problem,” she stated, her back turned.

“Will you share it with me?” he asked.

Ede nervously turned to face him then, and Malcolm saw in full what she’d been attempting to hide.

Please don't hate me.
“I don’t know how this happened. I mean, I know how it happened, but..”
4o oops1
“It happened.”

Hard to disguise a baby bump when you’re such a skinny little thing, no matter how fierce you may be. Malcolm felt a surge of warmth in his chest that was definitely not a heart attack.. Fascination? Joy? Pride? But, that would have to wait, as she was worried about something.

5o oops3
Are we not happy about this?

“How is this a problem?” he asked gently.

“You’re not mad?” she worried.

“No! Why would I be mad?”

“Because I molested you at the mailbox and kept bothering you and bothering you and, well. Now there’s three of us.”

5o oops4

“I’m a grown man, Edelweiss. I’m right where I want to be. Besides, I believe you’re missing an opportunity to be indignant, here,” he said. “I should think it’s the one who has to actually give birth that gets to be mad.”

“Oh..” Ede blushed. “I’m not mad.”

Malcolm smiled. “Well, how do you feel about it?”

"I'm plumming excited!"
“Pretty damned good, actually.”

“It’s.. neat,” she said with total honesty and a measure of guilt for taking such pleasure in it. “I’m sorry, but I’m really not sorry at all.”

“I’m not sorry either,” he said with affection. “I feel quite honored, actually.”

Malcolm slid his arms around Edelweiss and pulled her close, feeling the little firm rise in her belly as her body pressed tight against his. There was a future being dreamed in there; a measure of the infinite had been drawn from each of them to become something entirely new.

5o oops6

“I finally feel like I got close enough,” she said softly, pulling away from his embrace.

“Close enough to what, auntie?” asked a small voice to her right.

"What are you guys doing out here?"
“What are you guys doing out here, anyway?”

“Close enough to check ears for butterflies!” Malcolm joked as he pecked Ede on the cheek.

5o amina kid 3

Amina stared in amazement, not sure whether to believe her auntie’s funny friend or not. Ede and Malcom shared a bashful, excited smile. Interruptions by small voices were something they’d need to get used to now.