Intermission: Basements

Note: This isn’t a legacy update, though these sims are part of that ‘hood – just goofing around with the nifty new basement tool from today’s update. 


Ace Sloan stood with his father, Stuart Bowser, in an empty lot. Saturday was “project day,” and Ace waited to hear what Crazy Scheme pops had in mind for him this week.

"This is a real big day, son."
“This is a real big day, son.”

“Your mom and I’ve been pinching and saving,” Stuart said, “and today we can finally start work on the bunker!”

"They're already built precisely to specs - you just have to set them down."
I really wish you were kidding, Dad.

The bunker? Ace steeled his eyes in his sockets to keep them from rolling. Ever since his dad had heard about the new Game Pack last month, he was convinced that the world was coming to an end. Aliens, sickness – it was a bit much for his Squeamish pop to process. Stuart could have researched a bit or read the actual documentation to try to settle his concerns, but with his Commitment issues the very idea of that made him sweaty. Instead, he’d spent his evenings Trolling the Forums in a panic before settling into a comfortable sort of paranoid hysteria.

“We’re gonna build it tight and compact for maximum security,” Stuart explained, “just like those Pinstar Apocalypse bunkers on the interwebs.”

“You know they have premade apocalypse bunkers on the Gallery, right?” Ace asked. “They’re already built to specifications – you just have to set them down.”

z-stuart
“HA HA HA HA!”

Ace waited patiently for his father to stop laughing.

“Yeah right! Then your name goes on a list and they know right where ya put it!”

"Might as well check myself into a FEMA trailer right now!"
“And they’re probably bugged, too! Might as well check myself into a FEMA trailer right now!”

Ace sighed. It was pointless to try to talk sense to him when he got like this. Might as well build the darn thing.

“Do you have a blueprint, or plans or something to go off of?” he asked.

“I’m gettin’ to that,” Stuart said.  “Folks on the forums said no bigger’n 8 feet.”

“8 feet?” Ace asked. “Tall? Or, wide maybe?”

“Well I ain’t an engineer, son. You use that big brain o’yours and your math book there and figure it out.”

Ace was a Genius, but he wasn’t stupid.

“I think I’d better look at that website first,” he said.

z-ace-phone

Ace pulled up the Getting Started guide on his phone while his dad kicked at the dirt. Lots and lots of text about various careers and restrictions. He skimmed his way to the information he needed – 8×8. And he would need to include the mailbox and outdoor trashcan in that space, so it’d be good to build down and leave the surface somewhat open.

“Okay, we need to build within an 8 by 8 area. If you pick up the Basements tool –”

“The what now?” interrupted Stuart.

“It’s on the Walls and Empty Rooms tab in Build mode — click the little button up in the right corner with the tools on it,” Ace continued.

"You know, that little button with the tools on it in the upper right?"
“Or you could just hit F2.”

“And there you go talkin’ like your mother again!” Stuart complained, throwing up his hands. “I don’t know what the heck you two see when you open your eyes, but it ain’t natural!”

“Hang on, dad, I’ll just do it.”

z---basements

“Now, I just drag 8 across, and 8 up..”

z-basements-2

“And release.” Ace let go of the mouse button.

z-basements-3

“Well you took my money, but where the plumheck is my basement??” Stuart demanded of the flat ground.

“Calm down, dad – it’s there, it’s just down a level. Let me put in some stairs so you can see it.”

z-stairs
“See now?”

“That’s kinda creepy. How’d you do that?”

“Do you really want me to tell you?”

“Sorry, son. Go ahead.”

“Now, we don’t need one, but since you mentioned the Apocalypse I’ll go ahead and build a ground floor room over the top.”

Ace built a joyless, windowless shack in the designated 8 x 8 space. He added the cheapest front door, and fenced in the mailbox and the outdoor garbage can. He thought it looked like a glorified public restroom, even without the public restroom door, but he was pretty sure it was just what his father had in mind.

z-nice-work
“Ahhh – it looks like freedom!”

“You did pretty good, boy,” Stuart smiled.

“Thanks,” Ace said. “But don’t you want to inspect the inside?”

“Oh, right!” said Stuart.

z-apocalyptihut

z-inspection

“Say, can we go down even deeper? I was just thinkin’, that’d be even more secure.”

“Sure. Hold still.”

"Don't move - I need room to put the stairs in."
“Don’t move – I need room to put the stairs in.”

z-lil-builder

“Okay, this is as deep as we can go,” Ace said as they descended to the bottom floor.

z-bottom-floor

“This’ll do just fine,” Stuart beamed.

Finally satisfied, Stuart Bowser returned to the surface with his Genius son, feeling pretty darn happy about the end of the world.

"You're pretty handy! You got that from me!"
“Let’s go home and get you a treat, huh? Maybe your mom’ll make us one those cakes of hers.”

And young Ace Sloan had a few hours of daylight left to enjoy doing anything other than this with his Saturday.

z-going-home

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Log 5.27: I, Hermit

It’s easy to disregard a Loner sim when you’ve got a houseful of others all working on careers and aspirations and skills. In a legacy story, those sims tend to fade to the background if they don’t have some other spark or quirk of personality to keep the player’s attention. Even something as lackluster as the Bookworm trait, to keep them in the house where the camera is likely to at least be nearby and accidentally catch them sometimes, can make the difference between notice and obscurity.

Fennel Wolff has none of those things on his side. I see him when it’s time for school and that’s about it.

5.27-fennel-teen

This family has a long history of nature nuts. The founder and all of the 4 heirs since but one have had the Outdoor Lover trait. Fennel’s one-upped those folks – nearby nature isn’t even enough for him. He needs the deep and distant wilds to satisfy his aspiration. I don’t wanna take another darn vacation right now and I feel slightly guilty about that, so I’ve really been ignoring this poor kid.

5.27-fennel-weeding
At least it’s green.. sorta.

He’s a great sim, though. I’ve made myself notice.

He’s quiet alright. But he’s also helpful and loving, and has his father Malcolm’s easygoing disposition.

He befriended grandma Coop all on his own!
He befriended spectral grandma Coop all on his own!

Fennel took a keen interest in his mother’s pregnancy, autonomously coming over to feel the baby, calming Ede down when she’s stressed and making me wonder a couple times if I was perhaps looking at a future doc.

He's very sweet to his mama.

When his new sister Freesia was born, Fennel was the first to tend her. He kept a close eye on her thereafter. She was often fussy and hard to console, but it never seemed to bother him.

5,27-baby-freesia-fennel
Sweet kid! (I mean the big one – the little one’s a tyrant!)

At the end of the last generation I decided that I would modify my Living Will succession laws going forward so that, if I want to, I have the option of locking in the next heir on the current heir’s elder birthday, rather than at their death. A workaround, hopefully, for that awful “hurry up and die already” feeling this succession law tends to cause towards elders. With Malcolm and Edelweiss both just having celebrated their adult birthdays, and Fennel with a pretty nice lead over his sisters in mom-relationship, he actually has a decent shot at being our next heir.

Especially since little Freesia got the Hot-Headed trait.  Oops.

5.27-child-freesia
Another round of the “I dare ya, punk” smirk!

And the dreaded Social Butterfly aspiration. Ugh. I hate that thing.

Freesia’s pretty much the spitting image of her mom when she was that age.

And this is the jumper I wear when I'm angry.
And this is the jumper we wear when we’re angry!

This probably shouldn’t amuse me so much, but it does. Hahaha.

Forsythia has gone as far with her Joke Star aspiration as she can until she’s an adult.

Hmm.. you seem awfully excited about your new homework..
Hmm, Forsy.. you seem awfully excited about your new homework book..

I wanted to work on her academics, but she STILL somehow manages to “lose” her homework on a daily basis – I got tired of buying new ones so I just gave up. It’s not like attending school is gonna bring her C grade up to an A by the weekend, so I figured we probably should-oughta just go ahead and take the next few days off & get nature boy to the woods so he can get cracking on this darned aspiration of his.

Aside from directing Fennel to his quota of unidentified plant nodes, and then to a nearby fishing hole, I let the Wolffs enjoy an autonomous vacation.

5.27-gone-fishin

I decided I wouldn’t even peek at them unless they started turning red or something. That way it’d be a vacation from me, too. They could probably use one.

If you wanna spend your vacation taking dirty dishes out into the woods, you go right ahead girl!
Angry, but nothing that stashing those dirty dishes in the woods can’t cure!

. . .

Since I didn’t have to watch my sims, I looked around instead.

God, it's beautiful out here. Is that a full moon?
God, it’s beautiful out here. Is that a full moon?

I’m feeling kind of bummed about mortality lately. Not just these little guys’, but my own.

Why play a game where you must watch things you love die over and over again when that happens in your own life too much already? Can't you just drink beer and watch idiotic television like a normal person?
Why play a game where you must watch things you love die over and over again when that happens in your own life too much already? Can’t you just drink beer and watch idiotic television like a normal person?

Commitment and obligation are weighing on me.

10 generations, really? And I'm only halfway. I can't remember what it was like to be unfettered.. sure, I can sneak off and make a scary clown in CAS in the middle of the night, but did I actually do anything with it? Nope!
10 generations, really? And I’m only halfway. I can’t remember what it was like to be unfettered.. sure, I can sneak off and make a scary clown in CAS in the middle of the night, but did I actually do anything with it? Nope!

Whoa! I found the hermit hut!

5.27-hermit-yard
Awesome! I’ve never actually seen this before – not in my own game, anyway!

Cool garden!

5.27-hermit-hut
I could dig living out here like this. You know, when the kids move out. I’d have to bring the cats, but they wouldn’t mind.

It’s so quiet and green out here. Even the bugs are lovely.

This makes me want to draw. Or paint.
This makes me want to draw. Or paint.

And there are cute little chipmunk-things, aww.

The cats will love to watch you little fellas.
The cats will love to watch you little fellas.

I remember what I was going to do, now. I was going to plant more things at the legacy lot.

Log 5z: Neighborhood Watch

Being a high-ranking agent in the SIA, there was a lot Casey Tesla knew that other Sims didn’t.

5z-casey-1

But there was also plenty she didn’t know. Like precisely what she was doing here, in this particular Willow Creek.

5z-casey-2

5z-casey-3

5z-casey-4

From what she could gather without probing too deeply where she oughtn’t, the death of Cooper Nolan, the only practicing agent in the region, had left a pretty big hole in the Agency’s information web that needed mending. That may be all there was to it. But surely they could have just stepped up recruiting in the area – why send a high ranking agent all the way from.. here, to another here? However that worked, she had a nagging feeling that there was something else at play here, too.

Hmm, she checks out. Edelweiss Wolff. Fifth generation legacy heir, first iteration. Outdoor lover, Culinary career.

Granddaughter of Clematis Wolff.. Interstellar Smuggler.

Outdoor lover?

Hmm. She wondered if that was it. It wouldn’t be the first time Casey’s assignments have seemed indirectly connected with space flight – particularly with rugged, do-it-yourself type pilots who go on to achieve great things. She recalled that the agency had taken a strange interest in her niece Delaney’s teenaged rocket competition project.

Her sweet Delaney. The hardest thing about all of this was leaving her behind. Thrown together by tragedy, Casey had watched her niece grow from a bright and serious little girl to an amazing, vibrant young woman with the strength to rise from the ashes and carry on her family Legacy. Delaney had a family of her own now and no longer needed Casey in the way that she did when she was a child, but that didn’t mean she didn’t miss her terribly.

Casey smiled then, thinking of her Gavin, who was outside happily working in the new garden so that he could continue plying his Herbalism craft. How funny that a Hotheaded, once Serial Romantic like herself would fall so in love, and even marry – but their life together felt natural, now.

5z-gavin

Gavin had supported her decision to move without question, even though it meant uprooting and starting over. And so far he seemed very happy here, content to putter around the yard, fish and spend time with their sons.

5z-tesla-boys

Like their love, the triplets had come to the Teslas later in life – both Casey and Gavin were in their 40s when they were born. Dashle, Dennis, and Darryl had already brought them so much joy. She couldn’t imagine their lives without them.

The boys, too, were adjusting well and seemed happy in their new surrounds – but when it came time for birthdays and holidays and all those little events that draw family together, she knew that absence would be felt for those they’d left behind. Hopefully it wouldn’t be forever.

But, enough sentimentality. All of that stuff was part of the job, and an indulgence Casey had little time for at present. Right now, she had work to do.

5z-casey-work

. . .

Nearby, in a smaller, quieter house, Reagan Sloan sat on some news of a personal nature.

5z-reagan-glitter

Being a Family-Oriented sim, having a child was definitely something that Reagan wanted. You might even call it a Persistent Unpinned Wish, if you wanted to be really thorough. And she wasn’t a young adult any more, so time was pretty much a-wastin’. But now that it had actually happened, her decision to relocate here felt a bit ill-conceived. Reagan wasn’t sure, any more, if it was really safe to feel safe.

But, so far it seemed that the oblivious legacy heir of this save game’s open invitation to the blogospere for new residents hadn’t threatened the general idyllic quality of this world.

5z-reagan-nothing
“I agree, the weather is really nice today!”

She didn’t sense an increase in game awareness – townies still came and went with perfect contentment, and even the new folks seemed to just be preoccupied with their own stuff.

Her pending motherhood overrode her desire to remain neutral. Reagan broke her “it’s better to ignore it” creed and checked the blogs.

Looked like most folks were still preoccupied with S-GAS, the Symposium for Game-Aware Sims. Some work sessions had concluded, but the folks back home were having a little trouble setting up – nothing they couldn’t handle, Reagan was sure – and Eric Lewis Prime hadn’t given the keynote speech yet.

Reagan was relieved to find that the Player of this save game was not participating, aside from sending her SimSelf as a sort of.. ambassador?  What’s more, if the posts involving her SimSelf were any indication, this Player seemed like a bit of a simpleton – easily distracted by robot toys and cupcakes, and waylaid by a full bladder.

No wonder nothing changes here. :)
No wonder nothing changes around here. 

This information was a comfort to Reagan. Worst case, plum happens and she has to move again. With the kid, this time.

Maybe she’d bring ferret-face, too. If she left him behind she’d miss his work stories and the way he gets excited about simple things like his favorite TV show coming on, or finding sweet cereal in the house at night.

5z-reagan-baldy

Yeah, ferret-face was a Squeamish, Non-Committal Goofball, but Reagan wasn’t a Fabio kind of gal, and she wasn’t into metaphysics. Endless circular pondering – be it over shallow things like how attractive one’s hair is or isn’t, or deep things like whether one is comprised of code or meat – didn’t turn her on in the least. She preferred simple acts of being and doing, and folks who knew how to be and do. Or at least didn’t take themselves too seriously.

What did they expect from an NPC maid? They make the messes and I clean them up.
What did they expect from an NPC maid? They make the messes and I clean them up.

Damned if she didn’t feel like a goddess though. Her body curved with promise every which way. Her hair was shiny, and her eyes were as deep as the ocean.

5z-reagan-flirty

. . .

Off in the largest house of all, Ravon and Joel Skinner were experiencing that special kind of giddy fatigue that accompanies the blessing of newborn twins.

They've named their sons Ahmed and x. :D
Famous people and their weird kid names, I tell ya.

Yes, little Chester and Ahmed Skinner would have every path open to them here. Ravon just knew they’d grow up to be fabulous. And how could they not – they’re Skinners!

Who's my little mayor-wayor.
Who’s mama’s little mayor-wayor?

Ravon’s heart swelled with pride when she looked at her beautiful babies. But she aimed to get started on another right away. She wasn’t one to wait around for what she wanted – when she’d said big happy family, she meant big happy family.

5z-Ravon

Joel had intended to find employment by now, but family life kept him quite busy. When he wasn’t caring for his sons, he was spending long hours honing his logic and mechanical skills. He found science particularly fascinating, and hoped to be able to impart some of that interest to his children.

5z-Joel

He also, of course, spent plenty of quality time with Ravon.

"Darling, come to bed."
“Darling, put down that book and come to bed.”

5z-joel-3

Joel might decide to pursue a career at some point, but being at home was a full-time job for now.

. . .

For the first time in, well, forever, Landon Purdue felt kind of hopeful about things.

5z-landon

There was a new girl in his life, and he really liked her. And this time, it seemed like she liked him back.

Her name is Brianna and she’s staying next door.  She’s beautiful, and so talented, and a lot of fun.

5z-landon-6

They have things in common! They’re both Active and really love staying fit. He’s been working at the gym, and she’s been coming in a lot.

How's my gorgeous trainer today?
“And how’s my gorgeous trainer man today?”

Landon had been living unrequited for ages, so it took him a while to believe that someone so amazing could actually want him – not just want him, but really care for him, and return his affection.

"So.. wait. You really like me?"
“So.. wait. You really like me? Just Landon?”

5z-landon-3
But Brianna was the real deal. It was a bit awkward at first, dating someone who lived with the girl he’d had a crush on for most of his life, but somehow that weirdness just stopped — Brianna was good friends with her, and Landon found that he didn’t even mind when they learned that Ede was pregnant again.

5z-landon-4

5z-landon-8
Oh, plum..

And when Ede went into labor, he and Brianna were so busy enjoying one another’s company that they didn’t even stop what they were doing to see if she needed help.

5z-landon-5
“So what are you thinking about right now?”
Time to squeeze out a bowling ball.
Time to go squeeze out a bowling ball.

“I wonder how that turned out, anyway,” Landon thought aloud. “I should probably call over there.”

. . .

Thanks once again to ShannonSimsFan, aroseinbloom, Jes2G and Bilmonaghan for entrusting me with your sims. ❤

Log 5y: Black and White and Dead All Over

Despite my lack of enthusiasm for facing life after Cooper, even after putting this off for days-verging-on-weeks, her celebration of life party was quite a success. If she’d arrived a little bit earlier, Coop would probably have told some of the terrible jokes herself.

5y-coop-happy

We prepared the space, had naps and showers and steeled ourselves for the inevitable flood of nostalgia. And then we started the party. “Black and white” seemed fitting. Sad and not sad, dead and not dead.

It's going to go alright.. right?
It’s going to go alright.. right?

Easter Lily and her family were the first to show up.  Easter was one of the few who visited the urn.

5y-easter-1

Easter always knows what's up, even if nobody else does.
Easter always knows what’s up, even if nobody else does.

She was sad all night.

Ede’s brother Elder made it, all the way from that Houseful of Hippies he’s been living in!

Married life suits you, brother.
Married life suits you, E3.

We finally got to meet his wife Cathy, who, despite being very down-to-earth, is quite the hottie.

There goes my heart again!
We finally have an Aunt Cathy! ;D

And their wild child Freezer Bunny Wolff Tea, A.K.A. Whatever-He-Tells-You-His-Name-Is, who immediately slipped off somewhere.

Oh, there he went. :)
Oh, there he went. 🙂

Brianna, who’s become more like family to us than roommate through this whole death thing, plays violin beautifully now. It actually sounds good!

Since she was still in mourning, her music seemed particularly soulful. Her and Landon (also still grieving) stuck close together most of the night, not really wanting to socialize with anyone else.

5y-bri-mopey

We hired Cathy to cater, but she decided she’d rather mingle. She had some important things to discuss with her brother-in-law.

"How about those Wolffs, huh?"
“How about those Wolffs, huh?”

It was great for Cathy to have someone to relate to about this particular aspect of her life — someone who knew intimately what it was like to be caught in the whirlwind that seemed to envelop this family.

"I mean, you know.. spectacular."
“Do you also find that it’s always, you know.. spectacular?

While his mom was busy connecting with Malcolm, Freezer Bunny made a beeline for his cousin Forsythia.

"Greetings, cousin!"
“The party can start now, cousin – I have arrived!”

Forsythia was intrigued by this pipsqueak. Being a Good and oft Confident sim, she tended to fancy herself a sort of superhero. A superhero comedian with a sidekick.. that could be fun.

"Yeah! Our grandma's spirit just came inside of me and now I'm gonna puke green peas!"
“Wait. I think I just felt our granny’s shadow. Wanna see my head spin?”

Let’s let them handle that one. We should check on the rest of the guests.

Easter’s identical twin sons Elicanto and Flarn are all grown up – or at least all teened-up. They both seem to have adopted their uncle Elder’s old hairstyle.

5y-flarn

Fennel was hiding out as best he could, but wound up in an interesting conversation with his fellow Loner uncle Jarrett about all the waterfowl he’d seen on his latest trip to Granite Falls.

"Finally, someone who can appreciate ducks!"
“Finally, someone who can appreciate ducks!”

And there were some folks at the party that I’m quite certain we’d never met before.

“We’re very sorry for your loss, Mrs. Wolff,” said the red-haired woman who sat down beside Edelweiss. “This is a lovely way to celebrate what she meant to you all.”

5y-tesla-1
“So you knew mom, then? Or..?”

Ede didn’t catch her name – she’d been hanging out with her drink, trying to pretend she was off in a quiet place somewhere surrounded by trees instead of all of these people.  But Forsythia was on the case, testing the woman’s husband with a round of celebrity mockery.

5y-tesla-2

It’s hard to gauge someone’s character when they’re in a suit at a formal party, but whoever this guy was, she figured he must not be all that bad. He kept up with Forsythia’s mischief and didn’t get grumpy about it, anyway. That’s saying something.



About midway through the party timer, I quit dragging my feet and let the funerary bits commence.

Forsythia, our teenaged aspiring Joke Star, set the tone with a thoroughly irrelevant skit she’d poorly-written that morning about cops and llamas.

“So this cop and this llama are sitting at the bar, and the cop notices the llama’s got some serious hair going on.”

5y-forsy-joke
“I mean, the stuff is like, out there – we’re talking two bar stools, here.”

“This cop – he’s like, a real neat freak, or a snob, or something, so anyway he starts freaking out.”

5y-forsy-joke-2
“And he’s like, ‘You! You’re way too hairy! I’m taking you in!'”

“So the cop takes the llama to the squad car, and he cuffs him and he’s shoving him in there and it’s like, difficult because – the hair! The llama’s all, ‘Bro, what did I do??’ and the cop looks at him and he says,”

"I'm charging you with shear neglect!"
“I’m charging you with shear neglect.”

“Shear.  Neglect.”

Tough crowd.

Dang. Tough crowd. At least her twin cracked a smile for her – it was enough!

The cool thing about being Self-Assured is that you usually can't tell when you suck.
The cool thing about being Self-Assured is that you usually can’t tell when you suck.

Well, maybe the audience wasn’t feeling it, but I’m pretty sure Coop would have approved.

That was all the material Forsythia had, so she surrendered the floor to her lil’ cousin.

5y-finnjon
“Evening, freezer bunnies and fossils and germs!”

“This is Finn-Jon Intergalactic Mailman Wolff Tea, current route, every third planet.”

5y-finnjon-2
“Unless it’s a purple galaxy, in which you skip the third and go directly to the fifth.”

“And suddenly, the llamacorn jumped up and pointed at this sparkly light coming down from the sky!

Only it was a trick.

It wasn’t a light at all! It was a shadow!

It was Grim!”

"You're all gonna die! Mwuahahahaha!"
“You’re all gonna die! Mwuahahahaha!”

“But! Little did Grimmy know about the llamacorn’s magic feather!

He pulled out the feather, waved it five point six times.

And Grimmy said, ‘Hey, bunny. How about a game of chess?’

So they played chess for about five hundred million plexibillicutty-zillion years.

And Nobody. Ever. Died. Again.”

5y-finnjon-3

“Until they reached stale-mate. MWAHahahaha!”

5y-audience-1

Tough act to follow, that. But being the corny sap he is, his pop Elder of course had some words to say.

“Coming back home for this, it’s been good to see Easter and Jarrett, Ede and Malcolm, and to think that now with me and Cath, each of us, each of Mom’s three kids, has created a life and babies with the one person here in this digital space that each would choose–if we could choose anybody. It’s not a coincidence it’s worked this way.”

5y-elder-luv

“Mom and Dad had an epic love, the kind that would fuel any jet propulsion system.

They were continuing the tradition that Dad’s mom and dad started.

It’s easy, while we’re together here for this occasion, to think about endings. But when I look at all our kids, and think of their true loves yet to be found, I think about beginnings.

Mom and Dad’s love inspired three more epic love stories. And it looks like our three epic loves will inspire a heck of a lot more! It’s a holy apocalypse of love!”

5y-elder-sp-1

“When love spreads like this, filling up the digital world like jelly fills a cupcake, we know we’ve got more happiness than anything!

Mom would grumble, hearing me talk like this. She’d remind us that life isn’t always frosted.”

5y-elder-sp

“We know that, right, Finn-Jon?

But we keep on licking the frosting anyway. Because you were the one who showed us life was good.

Love you, Mom.”

5y-elder-mic


Elder sat down next to his mini-me, in a room full of family and friends, and just smiled.


Much later, long after the party had ended and the guests had all gone home, we found this painting out on the graveyard easel:

5y-cathy-painting
And somehow, this was was what pushed me over the edge!

A tight little cluster of Loner trees, in a bright little clearing in the wilderness.

It’s perfect. Thanks, CT. ❤

..

Elder and Free-Jon’s speeches courtesy of CathyTea.
Thanks to ShannonSimsFan for the mystery redheads, who we’ll see more of very soon. 🙂

Log 5x: A Really Long Day

Brianna was pretty upset. Just this morning things had been going so great, and now it seemed it’d all gone to plum. She felt guilty for being present for this deeply private, horrible moment when Cooper’s family wasn’t – and freaked out for seeing someone die right there in front of her. And this poor guy who was here when she got home – he obviously was someone that cared about the woman, and he looked so lost and sad now. She didn’t know what she was supposed to do about any of it.

“Hey, lets get you inside, ok?” she said.

Landon wordlessly entered the house, with a very concerned Brianna in tow.

Even though he was super sad, Landon always smiled when he came into the house.

When Landon went into the room, he couldn’t help but feel happy for a moment. He had so many good memories associated with the Wolffs’ house. Even though it had been remodeled, a lot of the colors and furniture were the same as when they were all growing up together. So many days spent roughhousing with Elder, and eyeballing (and, for a very brief period in their teens, fooling around with) Ede. But then he returned to the present. They weren’t kids anymore. Elder was gone with a family of his own, Dia and Coop were dead, and Ede married the plumming mailman. He had to go sit down.

5x-cleanup-2

“I’ll try to get ahold of someone,” Brianna offered.

"C'mon, Ede - pick up!"
C’mon, Ede – pick up!

No luck.

“Edelweiss isn’t answering her phone, but I’m sure she’ll be home soon,” Brianna said. “Can I get you anything?”

5x-sad-landon

5x-sad-landon-2

5x-sad-bri-1

. . .

Forsythia and Fennel had gone to school on very little sleep. Since it was their final day of childhood, they’d both stayed up late trying to milk the last of their kidville aspiration points, so they were in a sorry state when they got home.

5x-tired-kids

Fennel went right to bed. There could’ve been a herd of elephants in the living room and he wouldn’t have noticed or cared. He was gonna pass out any second.

Forsythia, having finally imbibed the darn z-juice she had queued up and was supposed to drink this morning before hopping on the bus, went straight for the shower. While she was in there, she calmed down a bit and was able to pick up on the feeling that something was going on in the house.

It was Forsy that went out and collected Cooper’s urn. She was the only one who could. For some reason, it wouldn’t budge from the sidewalk – I couldn’t drag it, or move it in build/buy mode. But she could add it to her inventory.

Strangely, when she looked in her inventory afterward, there were two of them.

Being the inquisitive, independent child she is, she went straight to the internet for answers.

do secret agents fake their own deaths? maybe she messed up and left two urns.
Do secret agents fake their own deaths? Maybe the coverup team messed up and left two urns.

. . .

When Ede finally got off work and walked into the house, Brianna let it all out.

“Oh my god, I’m so sorry! I couldn’t do anything!”

"Slow down and start from the beginning."
“Whoa, slow down – what’s going on?”

“Take a breath and start from the beginning,” Ede said.

“Your mom,” Brianna said, “She.. I was right there! and I couldn’t do anything!”

5x-sad-bri-2

Brianna couldn’t handle it any more – tears started to flow.

5x-sad-bri-4

“Hey,” Ede comforted, “It’s not your fault. It was gonna happen soon no matter what anyone did.”

“You’re not upset?” Brianna asked, sniffling.

Ede paused. Am I?

Strangely, nothing.
I just feel numb.

“It’s not your fault, Bri. I’m sorry you had to go through that alone.”

“I’m not alone,” she said. “Some other guy is here, too.”

. . .

Malcolm had already found Landon.

5x-bygones

“Look,” said Malcolm, “I know we’re not exactly pals, but I’m truly sorry for your loss, man. You’ve known Cooper for a lot longer than I have. That’s got to be hard.”

“Yeah,” said Landon sadly. “She was a funny lady.”

Malcolm smiled. “Yes, she had a powerful sense of humor.”

"She would have known what to say about that suit."
“She would have known what to say about that clown suit you’re wearing.”

Ede and Bri came to rescue Malcolm from the awkward conversation and the four of them spent some time chilling and reminiscing.

“When I met your mom,” Malcolm said to Ede, “she accused me of being in love with you and threw a drink in my face.”

"It didn't get all over my face, but I had to change my shirt!"
“It was COLD.. I had to change my shirt!”

Ede smiled at him. “I remember that night — oh god, that party was horrible! But you were so plumming sweet. And.. smokin’ hot.”

5x-remin-2
“I don’t think I’d ever been that frustrated in my life.”

Malcolm was blushing a bit, but he kept his cool and smirked back at her. “I guess she might have been on to something after all.”

5x-remin-3

“She flirted with me once.. I think.” Landon interrupted. “Cooper I mean. At her birthday party. We were dancing really close — she was a great dancer. But, then she yelled at me to step off.”

"I always wondered what that was about."
“I always wondered what that was about.”

“Wow,” Brianna laughed, “this family almost sounds crazier than mine!”

"And believe me, we have some crazy!"
“And believe me, we’ve had some crazy!”

The mood had finally lifted a bit, and Ede suddenly remembered something important that had kind of fallen out of her head when all this stuff happened.

“Plum!” said Ede.

“Huh?”

“It’s the twins’ birthday. We were supposed to do cake tonight.”

“We’ll still do it.” Malcolm said decisively.

“Party time?” Brianna asked, jumping right in to help.

“Hmm, it’s really late – I think we can just do it with us. Will you stay, Landon?”

“Sure,” he said.

Edelweiss and Malcolm got to cooking and cleaning, leaving Brianna and Landon with a couple minutes to properly introduce themselves to each other.

. . .

“So you’re Brianna.” He’d already heard her name a dozen times tonight, so it’s not like he could ask her what it was at this point.

She smiled. “And you’re Landon.”

5x-budding-1

“You were pretty sw–”

“It’s cool that you –”

5x-budding

They’d both started speaking at once, and they both stopped at once. Oops.

They both laughed.

“Long day,” said Brianna, exhausted.

“Really long,” said Landon.

5x-budding-2

. . .

Forsythia, having developed several promising theories on the mystery of the extra urn that she couldn’t wait to share with her brother, was hungry so she finally made her way downstairs only to be sent right back up by her mom.

“Go wake your brother up, hon – let’s have cake!”

Oh man. She’d kind of lost track of what day it was. Z-juice does that to you!  Forsythia alerted her twin to the happenings, and then she stepped up to the cake and had a moment of stage fright.

Oh gosh, am I really ready for this?
Oh gosh, am I really ready for this?

But she pulled it together and got on with the show!

5w-forsythia-teen-fistglow

She punched her way through the glowy bits like a champ, and made it to the other side with the Self-Assured trait like her momma, and an aspiration to become a Joke Star, like her grandma Coop had.

Both kids got the teeny eyes, but at least Forsythia got mom's luscious lips!
Both kids got the teeny eyes, but at least Forsythia got mom’s luscious lips!

Fennel took a deep breath and stepped up to take his turn.

5w-fennel-teen-cake

Aww, it's a little Malcolm Wolff.
Oh em gee, it’s a little Malcolm Wolff.

And darn it, we got another Loner. He rolled the new aspiration, though – Outdoor Enthusiast – I’m excited to try that one, since it gives me an excuse to play around with the xpack some more. (I feel like the outdoorsy/Loner combo is getting pretty old –  we’ve had one or both every darn generation – but I should be grateful it’s not something worse to play.)

The grownups pooped the party pretty quick – it had been a long, emotionally draining day. Landon went home, and the others retired to their rooms.

Brianna, the only one in the house suffering the after-effects of witnessing death, went to bed pretty sad – she would have a hard time sleeping tonight.

She acts tough, but Bri is a sweetie.
She acts tough, but Bri is a sweetie.

When Ede and Malcolm were finally able to do the same, he noticed that she seemed pretty tense.

“Want to talk about it?” Malcolm asked gently.

5x-sweet

“I don’t feel anything,” Ede said sadly. “About my mom, I mean. Am I some kind of monster?”

“Everyone processes grief differently.” Malcolm said.

“This is weird though, even for me. I’m upset that other people are upset, but when I think of mom there’s like.. nothing. That can’t be right. I loved her – I still love her.”

“Maybe you need something to help make it real for you?”

“Like a funeral or something?” she asked.

“Some kind of memorial gathering might do it, yeah. Would you like to try that?”

“That could be nice,” Ede said,  “Oh plum – I still need to tell Elder and Easter too, damn it!”

“I’ll call them,” he said. “You just relax a bit.”

Damn, he’s wonderful, she thought. How did I get so lucky?

"How did I get so lucky?"
“I kind of can’t believe you’re really here.. and we made babies and stuff!”

“Hurry back, ok?” Ede said. “I’d like to talk about that hot mailman some more.”

.

Log 5w: The Last Rung

It was a lovely morning as usual and Brianna Clemons, the Wolffs’ houseguest, was practicing violin before work. Staying at the legacy estate had been really awesome for her so far — she’d already found a great job, and she’d met a couple of people that seemed like they were receptive to taking in a roommate soon. But something was seriously off today — her playing sounded like plum.

What the heck is that?
Is that me?

It took Brianna a moment to realize that the hideous screeching she was hearing wasn’t actually coming from her, but from a mini violin player that was practicing off to her left.

5w-tiny-violin

“You still sound kinda.. bad,” said Forsythia to her brother.

“I don’t understand,” Fennel said. “I mastered Creativity!”

“I think those kid violins just sound like that,” Brianna offered. “When you get a little bit older you’ll be able to use a real violin, and I bet you’ll sound great.”

Fennel beamed and kept on screeching.

Like her brother, Forsythia had just completed her childhood aspiration. Where he’d be Creatively Gifted for the rest of his life, she’d evermore be Physically Gifted (which, if she’s anything like her mom, means she’ll also be skinny as heck).

Their parents were accomplishing goals too – both have reached the 3rd level of their careers. Mom Ede has shunned her Serial Romantic aspiration and hasn’t had a single whim that suggests she misses it. And pop Malcolm was inching forward on his aspiration to become Incredibly Wealthy – each working day helps, and he gets to wear an unfortunate ill-fitting suit now that we all enjoy making fun of.

Hahaha, what?
Hahaha, what? It’s got a built-in potbelly!

With work, Ede’s been happy as a clam. But Malcolm doesn’t seem to like his job all that much, as he’s constantly wanting to take vacation days. The Business career has family-friendly work hours – it’s been a predictable 9-5 M-F, which is a nice contrast to Ede’s long evening shifts at the restaurant. Still, he kind of drags his feet in the morning, and Forsythia notices.

“Dad?” Forsythia asked, “If you don’t like your work, how come you go?”

5w-curious-eyes
Good question, kiddo.

“Well,” Malcolm explained, “some of the things I want to accomplish require me to do things that aren’t always enjoyable.”

“Like homework,” she said.

“Kind of, yeah.”

"Homework should be about learning.. I guess I need to look at work that way
“Homework should be about learning.. I guess I could look at these days as ‘helping me learn’ .. something.”

“I guess you can’t just hide your work in the yard and pretend you lost it, huh?”

“No, I can’t..” he said. “Wait, what?”

“Oops, the bus is here – love you Daddy!”

That’s our C-grade scamp. Too clever for her own good? ;D

It’s not all horrible, though. Malcolm and Edelweiss have been working on satisfying some common wants of a more personal nature, too.

"I kind of miss your, uh.."
“I kind of miss your, uh..”

5w-hey-baby



And what of Cooper? She returned from her visit to see her son, Elder, wed the love of his life in great spirits, but she has been increasingly withdrawn since. It’s as though she somehow feels like her task here is complete, now. She’s not been grouchy or particularly Evil, just distant.  She does okay for a while when she gets to see Dia, but his visits have been few and far between.

5w-coop
Dia loves the study we built in remembrance of him.

The rest of the time we find her near the graveyard, either mourning or painting.

Kind of a somber painting, there.
Kind of a somber painting, there.
Aw. :(
Aw. 😦

Cooper’s age bar has been twinkling and she probably has one more solid work day before her final promotion to the top of the Secret Agent career. It’s been painfully slow going because her daily task is to do Romantic Interactions, and when Dia doesn’t show up she’s out of luck – super frustrating, since we’ve had so many sims fail just a step short of maxing their darn careers!

Looks like we’ve just gotta improvise.

5w-maid

Our faithful maid whats-her-face will have something fun to tell her coworkers about tomorrow!

5w-maid-2
Don’t worry, she was totally into it – she’d had the wish to flirt with someone for a while now.

That should do the trick. Our faithful maid whats-her-face will have something fun to tell her coworkers about tomorrow, at least.

It’s been a long while since we’ve had everyone occupied with school and jobs during the day. I’d forgotten how weird that is. The house is sure empty when it’s empty – hours just roll by, then days. The neighbors haven’t adjusted to our new schedule yet. Silly Landon will come over and just stand there waiting by the door, even though nobody will be home for ages yet.

Imagine my dismay when Coop came home early and struck a pose on the sidewalk.

5w-doh
Is that you calling me, Chickenbutt?

I guess there’s something to all those stories that play up how unlucky it is to go to work on your last day — you know, the ones where the detective takes a stray bullet while doing something mundane like getting a hot dog from the food cart moments before retirement.

Secret Agent Cooper passed away a day shy of her career goal, having reached the respectable 9th tier of the Diamond branch. Her death pose was both graceful and sultry, and she went down smiling.

5w-coming-home-to-you

Poor Landon was horrified, though. He’d practically grown up at the Wolffs’ house and although they weren’t particularly fond of one another, Cooper was kind of like a second mom to him. Nobody was even here to say goodbye!

5w-landon

And then, poor Brianna got home from work and caught the whole gory scene.

5w-landon-2

“Oh my god,” Brianna shouted, “Nooo!!”

She ran over as though she could have prevented it somehow, but it wasn’t her gig and she was way too late. The only thing she could think of was to beg for more time.

"You can't take her yet - just wait until her family gets home, please!!"
“Look, you can’t take her yet – just wait until her family gets home, please!!”

5w-nope
I don’t know why we ever bother. Death is a stingy bastard.