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Puritanical Green Thumb Chapter 24
 

Puritanical Green Thumb Chapter 24

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    Puritanical Green Thumb Chapter 24 Puritanical Green Thumb Chapter 24 Presentation Transcript

    • Welcome back to the Puritanical Green Thumb Legacy! Wow, it’s been a while since I’ve updated, hasn’t it? I apologize for that – I took a necessary few months away from all things Sims 2 related. I had a nice time reading, knitting, watching TV and movies and just generally enjoying life away from my beloved pixels. But the obsession with all things Sims 2 came back eventually, as I knew it would, and here I am! Filling your screen with images of Jane, Trevor and all of their family. So, need a recap? I wouldn’t blame you if you did! Well, when last we were together, you watched as Jane graduated college, preparing to move home and wed her hunky blond boyfriend, Trevor. Her siblings had all graduated too, for the most part, except for Alma, who is much younger and still in high school. Speaking of Alma, she had a strong desire to become a witch. That should be fun. And as for the other kids, Christa got engaged to Trevor’s estranged brother, Remington Harris. Jake got married to high school sweetheart Anna, and they had a son named John Lee. If you’ve read Jake’s side story, you know how that turned out. Jim got together with Gordon. Maggie was looking for love. And we’re caught up! So lets’ move on to current events, shall we?
    • When I got home after graduating from college, I was eager to start my new life. I was looking forward to beginning my career, to marrying Trevor and having kids – basically, I was eager to settle into the role of heiress to our family legacy. Before things could really get started, though, I had to just move back. Oh, and start readjusting to living at home with my parents instead of being on my own. “Jane! I’m so glad to see you home,” Mom was right there to greet me when I walked back downstairs after a quick change of clothes (transition clothes are never good, are they?). “Hi Mom! I’m happy to be home.” I smiled at her. My Mom was something else. She may have gotten older, and more settled into a comfortable family life, but she was still a spitfire, and I was proud to call her Mom.
    • “So, when is the wedding?” Mom was quick to ask. “Are we having it here? Your father is very much looking forward to walking you down the aisle, you know.” “Mom, all Dad wants is for us to all get married so he can finally achieve his lifetime want. He couldn’t care less about walking me down the aisle,” I laughed. Mom grinned back at me. “Well, it’s true that he wants to see all of you happily married, but you know he loves you and wants to walk you down the aisle, too. It means a lot to him.” At this I had to pause. “Uh, Mom. Trevor and I weren’t really planning on being married here. We kind of wanted to go on vacation and get married somewhere exotic. You know?”
    • Mom just looked at me for a minute. “You’re not getting married here?” I grimaced at her. “No. Sorry.” After a short pause, she smiled at me. “It’s okay. You should get married the way you want – don’t worry, I’ll handle your father. I’ll just remind him that he has three other children preparing to get married soon, so he’ll just have to be content with their weddings. I’m sure Christa is planning on some kind of ceremony, even if it’s only in her house.” “Thanks Mom. I really appreciate it.” “Don’t worry about it, Jane. Just go get married to that handsome blond fiancé of yours, and give me some grandbabies to spoil.” I laughed. “Yes, ma’am.”
    • I called Trevor and told him to get his butt over to the house – we had a vacation to go on! And then I called our airport shuttle to make sure it was due to be at the house on time, put on my jacket and went outside to wait for my fiancé. I was surprised by someone else before he got there, though – my baby sister, Alma. “Alma!” I shrieked before I could stop myself. “Why are you glowing?!?” “Jane!” Alma yelled, reaching out to give me a hug. “I’m so glad you’re home!” “Thanks, but really – what’s with the sparkles?”
    • “Isn’t it great?” Alma enthused. “I’ve finally become a witch!” I think my jaw fell to the floor. “You’ve what?” “I became a witch!” “I need more story than that, little sister.” Alma laughed. “Okay, okay.”
    • “Remember my friend Mallory? Mallory Kosmokos, the good witch?” “No, I don’t.” “Well, I met her once when I was out shopping with Mom, and you know how I was as a kid – all obsessed with witches. Well, she was nice to me, and gave me her phone number, so I talked to her on the phone almost every day when I was a kid, and started hanging out with her when I got older. And then one day she did it.”
    • “She performed a spell to grant my greatest wish – she made me a witch!” “Seriously? Just like that? She didn’t talk to you about it first? She didn’t try to make you see the responsibility that something like this comes with?” “Well, duh. Of course she did. She’s a GOOD witch, not a stupid one.” I rolled my eyes at her. “Jeez, calm down, she gave me the whole spiel okay?”
    • “Okay, my young friend, before I begin casting my spell, you’re sure you want this, right?” “Oh yes, absolutely!” “I know I’ve said all this to you over and over, but indulge me here – I need to say it again. Being a witch is a great gift, but it’s also a great responsibility. You have to learn how to manage your power; you have to be strong enough to never use it in anger, or with the intent to harm. You will need to spend a lot of your free time studying your craft, because only knowledge will help you master your powers. Are you ready to spend the time necessary to learn this gift?” “Oh yes! I’ll train every spare moment I have! I won’t watch TV, I won’t go out with friends, I won’t do anything, I swear. I’ll even skip college to study witchcraft full-time if I have to!”
    • “There’s no need to give up your whole life,” Mallory laughed. “Just make sure you’re prepared to put in the time necessary. And actually, you should go to college – there are secret classes you can take, along with your required courses, to help you with your magic.” “Ooh, exciting!” “All right, then. Prepare yourself, I’m going to begin my incantation.”
    • “And that’s all there was to it?” “Well, no, it wasn’t exactly an easy process. But I can’t say the spell to you – spells can’t be repeated to any non-witch. I can describe it to you, though!”
    • “She said her incantation, and sparkly bright light spilled forth from her wand, enveloping me and lifting me off the ground! I could feel the force of her energy going through me – it was amazing! I felt so alive! I hovered in the air while I changed, and when I landed back on the ground, my feet touched the sidewalk, and I could tell I was different.”
    • “I was a witch! Even my clothes had changed. I was suddenly wearing the standard witch robes and pointy hat, and I had my very own wand! It was amazing!” “Are you going to wear the clothes all the time? I mean, you know – the robes and hat?” Alma looked at me like I was nuts. “No, duh. Of course not. We only wear those for special occasions. I’ll still be wearing my regular clothes for everyday.” I laughed. “I know, it was a stupid question. So have you done any spells yet?”
    • “Yeah! She showed me how to do this cool spell where I bathed the house and yard in light. It was so neat. And since then I’ve learned a few small ones. You know, using a spell to get rid of the leaves in the yard, cleaning up water from the floor, that kind of thing. I can’t do anything big yet.”
    • “Well, that sounds exciting. You could be a big help to have around the house, if you can do those kinds of spells.” I laughed. “Seriously, though, you’ll be careful, right? I mean I know you’re a nice kid, but the Finches tend to be hot tempered, and you absolutely can NOT use your powers against anyone.” This time it was Alma’s turn to roll her eyes at me. “Duh, what am I, stupid? I’m a good witch, not an evil one. Is my skin green?” “No, of course not.” “Don’t worry about me, big Sis. Anyway, I think my future brother-in-law is coming up the walk. Isn’t it time you went off and started being sappy together?” I laughed. “Yes, dork, it is. Okay, I love you.” I gave her a hug, she told me she loved me too, and shooed me away.
    • I turned around to see Trevor walking up behind me, a big grin on his face. “Well, my beautiful fiancée, are you ready to…” I never heard what he was going to say next, because I tackled him, squeezed the stuffing out of him and kissed him so hard he lost all train of thought. “Uh, maybe the question should have been, am I ready,” he laughed. I pulled back and looked into his eyes. “So, wanna go get hitched in some exotic location?” “Oh yeah,” he said. “Let’s do it.”
    • One really long flight later, complete with delays for fog over the city where our layover was to take place, we finally arrived at our destination – exotic, mystical, spiritual Takemizu Village. “Honey,” I called out to Trevor, “can you deal with the bags? I’ll go check us in.” “Your wish is my command, my lady,” came Trevor’s reply. I laughed at his tone, which came complete with a graceful bow, then stuck my tongue out at him and went in to the beautiful hotel which was to be our home for the next four days.
    • I entered the hotel and approached the desk, a wide, happy smile on my face. “Yes, ma’am, how may I help you today?” The clerk asked. “I need to check in please? Last name Finch.” “Ahh, yes, here you are,” he said after checking his ledger. After I signed in, he gave me our room key, and told me to make sure to ask if we needed any help finding our way around the village. Somehow I think we’ll be just fine on our own, though. I may never have been to Takemizu Village before, but Mom bored all of us kids to tears with tales of her visit to the area, and I remembered all of the places I had wanted to see when I was a kid – I was going to make sure to see all of them while we were here.
    • I walked out of the hotel looking for Trevor, only to find him in the zen garden, raking the gravel. “Honey?” He looked up from his task. “Yes, Jane?” “I think we need to go shopping. You can NOT wear those clothes one second longer.” He looked down at his ensemble. “And what’s wrong with my clothes?” I laughed. “Oh honey, I don’t even have enough time to tell you everything that’s wrong with your clothes. Just come with me.”
    • After an eventful few hours of shopping at the local shopping center, Trevor and I sat down to quiet our stomachs with a dish of the local cuisine. Trevor prepared to dig into his bowl of rice, looking down at his plaid shirt. “You’re going to make me throw this away, aren’t you?” He asked, looking sad. Glancing over at him, I smiled. “Honey, you won’t even miss it. And if you want to hold on to it, that’s fine – we can use it as part of your next Halloween costume, I’m sure.” He looked at me, a mock look of hurt on his face, and I laughed. “Hmph,” he teased. “You just don’t appreciate a good plaid shirt when you see it.”
    • I laughed. “No, I guess I don’t. But I do appreciate a good man when I see him.” I reached over and took his hand. “I love you, Trevor.” “I love you, too, Jane.” We looked into each other’s eyes for a moment, and then my stomach growled, loudly. “Okay, whose ass do I have to kick to get some rice around here?” I yelled to the cook. Trevor just looked at me and laughed.
    • That night Trevor and I crawled into bed together, to spend our first night sleeping in each other’s arms. We were only sleeping, because we both wanted to honor our family tradition and wait until we were married before doing anything else. But it felt so nice to snuggle up in my love’s arms, looking forward to the next day. We had big plans for the day, and we each needed to get a good night of sleep. But we just lay together for a long time, holding each other, and enjoying being together. I think we finally fell asleep at about 2:00 in the morning. It was the nicest evening I had ever spent.
    • The next morning we dressed in our new kimonos, and walked to a special spot – a spot Mom had told me about, and even given me the map to. It’s location was a bit of a secret, but it was surprisingly easy to find when you had the right map in your hands. We went to see the Wise Old Man.
    • When we got there, the Wise Old Man was meditating, just as Mom said he was when she came to see him. He didn’t move or acknowledge our presence in any way, but I knew just what to do to bring him out of his trance. I got on my knees next to the tea table and started to pour. “Jane, what are you doing? Maybe we shouldn’t touch his things,” Trevor hissed at me. “Don’t worry sweetie, I know what I’m doing.”
    • Sure enough, I finished pouring, and had no sooner convinced Trevor to just sit down already, when the Old Man came out of his trance. He stretched his limbs, turned to look at us, and smiled. “Hello, young ones. I’ve been expecting you.”
    • He joined us at the table and took his cup of hot tea, and we just sat there for a while, enjoying the relaxing drink and having such a nice conversation. We introduced ourselves to him, and I told him that he had been visited by my mother years ago, after she had graduated from college herself. “Ah, yes, Emma. I remember her well. She married a local man, yes?” “Yes! My father is from Takemizu originally. How did you know that?” “Oh, I have my ways,” the Old Man smiled, a glint in his eye. Somehow I imagined he really did have his ways. And maybe I was better off not knowing what those ways were.
    • He laughed a small laugh. “Really, Emma has been keeping in touch with the occasional letter.” “Oh,” I laughed. “I see. I didn’t know that.” He looked at me. “Yes, there is much you don’t know. But you’ll learn. You’re a very smart woman.” I smiled, and he turned to look at Trevor. “As for you, young man, there is strife and discord in your family. You would be wise to deal with that, and soon.”
    • Trevor turned and looked at me. “What is he talking about?” “I don’t know, Trevor, but I imagine he’s talking about your brother. You know, Remington, the man my sister is marrying?” Trevor looked darkly at me and turned away. “I’d rather not talk about that here,” he said. I was quiet. The time would come, but he was right – this wasn’t the time or the place. But it would be dealt with, oh yes. Christa and I weren’t going to let that situation go on the way it was.
    • Once we were done with our tea, we stood up and continued our talk. The Wise Old Man wanted to have a chat with Trevor, so I walked to the other side of the pagoda, admiring the view. I have no idea what the two men talked about, and when I asked Trevor once their conversation ended, he just hissed to me that he’d tell me about it later. “Now, young people,” the Wise Old Man said, “if you’d like to have a seat, I’ll tell you a story – the fantastic story of a young girl with an incredible heart, and more courage than most people twice her age.
    • So we sat and listened as he told us a tale of a girl, a dragon, and what she did to save a town. It was even more enthralling than mom had ever made it sound when I was a kid.
    • When the tale was over, we said our good-byes to the Wise Old Man, and we left him to his meditation as we headed back to the village. As we walked toward the path we had to take back into town, I looked at Trevor. “So, what did you two talk about so long?” I was dying to know! Trevor looked at me. “Babe, let’s just say that he made me see the light. I know I need to do something to change my relationship with my brother. But please let me do it on my own time, okay?” “Mm hmm,” I murmured. “Sure.” But if his own time took too long, we’d see what happened when the women got involved.
    • When we got back to town, we walked to a local Zen garden. We had just gotten there and started to explore the sights, when I was approached by a man dressed as a Ninja! He asked me a question, but apparently he wasn’t satisfied with my answer, because he shook his head and disappeared in a puff of smoke. Whatever, I had better things to do.
    • Trevor and I had decided on our walk back to the village that today was going to be our wedding day. As soon as we arrived at this Zen garden, we knew that this was the place to do it. Once the Ninja had disappeared, Trevor and I came together and each pulled a ring out of the pockets of our robes. I slipped the ring on his finger, as I said, “Trevor, I was so lucky to find you that day after class, when you were talking to my professor. From the moment I first met you, I have been drawn to you. I feel like I have found my other half – the one person I was meant to find. You are my heart and my happiness. I can’t wait to love you for the rest of my life.”
    • Trevor slipped a ring on my finger and looked up into my eyes. “Jane Finch, you are the light in my life. I thought I was happy, but then I met you and learned what real happiness could be. The love I feel for you is so strong that it feels like it’s going to burst my heart right in two. I look forward to spending the rest of our lives waking up in each other’s arms. You have my heart. You have my love. You have my future. I am yours.” I wiped the tears from my eyes, and looked at the wedding band, looking so right nestled there with my engagement ring. “I love you, Trevor Finch.” “I love you, Jane Finch.”
    • That evening was quite a bit more passionate than the night before. It was a magical, exciting night. I swear, I heard music. Also, now I know why all of the other couples were hopping into bed all the time in college. Hee.
    • The rest of our vacation together went very quickly. We each enjoyed the most relaxing massages. We took in more sights. We learned to play mahjong. We ate all of the local cuisine. We even ran into that Ninja again.
    • I made a wish at the local wishing well. I wished for money, of course – I am a Fortune Sim, after all. It went well, and a nice green light came out of the well. I didn’t quite expect to get the money the way I did, though! I think I still have bumps on my head from the downpour of coins.
    • All too soon our honeymoon was over, and we settled into a routine of adult life. I started my job and was quickly promoted, achieving my lifetime want in the process! Trevor started a little lower on the career ladder, so he has some studying and long days and nights of work ahead of him before he achieves his desire to be Chief of Staff.
    • I was going to have plenty of time to help him out, though – I’m pregnant. I couldn’t quite believe it, but I had gotten pregnant on our wedding night. It seems so cliché! I’m looking forward to the birth, though. While I was on maternity leave, I just basically hung around the house whenever Trevor was at work. I talked on the phone to all of my siblings, catching up on what was going on with each of them.
    • When Christa graduated from college and moved into a small house with her fiancé, Remington Harris, she got a job at first, to help furnish the house – Remington had remained firm about not wanting to take money from her family, and she had been happy to go along with him. What difference did it make if there weren’t any curtains on their windows for a while, or if they had to buy a cheap second hand couch? She could make the curtains, they would upgrade to a nicer couch once Remington had gotten promoted a few more times, and all that really mattered was that she was making a home with the man she loved. And she had no problems with burning the midnight oil working on her trusty sewing machine, making them clothes and curtains. She actually kind of liked the satisfaction of putting the time into making something that would help their family.
    • It wasn’t long after they got married, though, before their first child was on his way. She worked through her pregnancy, and collected maternity leave for as long as she could, but then she quit her job so that she could stay home with their first born son, Gregory. Little Greg was the light of her life, and she treasured every moment that she got to spend caring for him. She and Remington were hoping to give Greg a brother or sister soon, but for now, their family, while not complete, felt like a true gift. Christa Harris was a very happy woman.
    • As for Jane’s other sister, Maggie had gotten the shock of her life when she had fallen deeply in love with family friend (and distant cousin) Gerald O’Mackey. She knew that Gerry had crushed on Jane big time when they were both teenagers, but that had quickly gone away once Jane had gone to college, leaving Gerry behind. Maggie hadn’t ever thought of Gerry in a romantic way – he had always only been a friend. But when he came to college and joined her in the Greek house, something changed. She was drawn to him, and she was delighted when it turned out that he felt the same way about her. They were declaring their love for each other mere weeks after he moved into the house, and they were engaged to be married before Maggie graduated and moved back to New Riverblossom, leaving Gerry at school to finish his last two years.
    • When Maggie, Jim and Gordon all graduated and moved home, they had a heck of a house waiting for them. The family had held onto the plans for the original family house – the one family founder Amanda had started to build so many generations ago – when they moved from Riverblossom Hills to New Riverblossom. Emma had gifted Jim and Maggie with these plans, and between the two of them and Gordon, they were able to have the house built just a few streets away from the current family house. Certain changes to the house had been made – upgrades to make it a little more appealing – but the house looked much the same as the one featured in so many pictures of the past generations, and Maggie and Jim were happy to be able to call it home.
    • Soon after they moved in and got settled, Jim and Gordon threw a small family party so that they could get married in front of those they loved most. Once they had said their vows, and Jim and Gordon had become Mr. and Mr. Wilson (Jim took Gordon’s last name), the guests all wished them their best, and took their leave. Meanwhile, Maggie went to her first day of work, leaving the boys at home alone, to christen their new home as only two people in love can do. They had a lot of fun christening the living room, and the bedroom, and then the living room again…new homes are fun, aren’t they?
    • Medical advances in Sim procreation had enabled Sims of the same sex to conceive and carry babies that belonged, genetically, to each parent. Jim and Gordon took advantage of this and conceived their first child the day that they moved home. Anthony Kirby was born a short time later to parents who were a bit overwhelmed at having such a small person in the house. Tony, as they ended up calling him, was destined to never have a moment alone unless he was sleeping – and even then, someone was generally standing over his crib, watching him. His two fathers and his Aunt Maggie were all devoted to him, and gave him everything he needed and could ever want.
    • Alma was true to her word after she became a witch – she really did spend a lot of her time studying her craft. Before long she realized she had to find a balance between studying and having a social life, though, so she asked Gerry’s sister, Ellen O’Mackey, out on a date. The two girls had found each other attractive, and flirted a bit in school, but had never taken it further. The date went pretty well, in most respects. Alma found Ellen to be a bit stand-offish, though, so they were destined to only have the one date. Alma decided that for now, she would stick to getting her social need up by hanging out with friends and talking to her siblings. Love could wait.
    • After a winter spent mostly inside during my pregnancy, I just had to get out of the house in the nice early spring weather, so I went to see Christa, to talk to her to see what we were going to do about our stubborn husbands.
    • “Okay, Christa, what are we going to do to get our husbands to be friends and brothers again?” “Jane, I wish you wouldn’t push them. You told me Trevor has promised to try to fix their relationship, right? And he made you promise to let him do it in his own time?” “Well, yeah, but if we wait for them, it may never happen! You know how men are.”
    • “I know, Jane, but I feel like this is one case where we just have to be patient. The men are going to be thrown together for our family functions all the time, right? So they’ll have to start talking at some point.” I shook my head at her naïveté. “Seriously, Christa, if we leave it up to them, our kids will be home from college and starting families of their own, and our husbands still won’t be talking.” “Well, we have to give them a little longer. They’re fathers now, or about to be in Trevor’s case – they’ll come to see how important this is.”
    • “Okay, Christa,” I said, pointing my finger at her for emphasis, “we’ll do it your way for a while, but if they take too long, I’ll do something about it myself. I’ll lock them both in the same room if I have to, but they WILL start talking to each other.” Christa sighed. “Yes, Jane. Now either go on home or come in and help me take care of your nephew.” “Ooh, I pick nephew. I haven’t held that baby in days!” I laughed, “Besides, I’m sick of being stuck in our house – man, I can’t wait for this baby to come so I can get back to work!”
    • I was getting larger and larger every day – I was beginning to wonder how in the world one baby could take up so much room! And frankly, I didn’t even want to know how a baby that big was going to come out. I’d face that when the time came. I was starting to get a little stir crazy, really – anxious to get the baby born and get back to work. I’m just not a woman who can stay home and take care of the house all day! Christa’s lifestyle would kill me. Trevor was getting anxious for me to give birth, too – he just couldn’t wait to see his little son or daughter. Of course, he has a nephew who he hasn’t even met yet, but that’s another worry for another time.
    • Spring really was arriving in New Riverblossom, and it was time to get the garden ready for planting. Gardening is an old family tradition that goes all the way back to Amanda Finch herself, and I have to say, it’s a hobby that I’m really glad to have inherited from my female ancestors, but it’s not exactly as easy for me as it seems to have been for them. It just takes so long for those damn plants to grow! And patience has never been my strong suit, frankly. Of course, as pregnant as I was, I couldn’t stand it for too long before my back started to kill me. And that was always a nice excuse to go back inside and relax.
    • I came in from gardening and went to take a nice hot bath, but before I could even draw the water, I realized that my backache wasn’t just from working in the garden – I was in labor! “MOM!!! TREVOR! Daddy! Help! It hurts!”
    • Before anyone could even get there to help me, I had already given birth to my firstborn baby boy. Then I had to waddle across the house to find someone to hand him off to, so I could give birth to his twin!
    • No wonder I was big as a house – I was carrying twin boys! Daniel and Joseph were born just a couple of minutes apart. Trevor is overjoyed to have two sons, and as for me, I’m kind of looking forward to trying again to get a girl. Don’t tell anyone, but being pregnant may have sucked, but it was also kind of nice, and these boys just amaze me. I carried them! I brought them into this world! It’s crazy, but it’s fantastic, too.
    • Shortly after the birth of the twins, it was time to head back over to Christa’s – this time to see my nephew turn into a toddler! “Toss that baby, Remington! I want to see my nephew as a toddler! Woo!” The room erupted into cheers as Remington prepared to help his son blow out his very first birthday candles ever.
    • A few short minutes later, there he was! Little baby Greg, who was now little Toddler Greg. He’s such an adorable mix of his parents – it makes me anxious to see what my boys will look like as toddlers! Maybe they’ll resemble their cousin!
    • The extended Finch family partied well into the afternoon, celebrating not only Greg’s birthday, but also just being together for the first time in a while. There was one family member who was noticeably absent, however – Trevor.
    • Christa waited until Remington was in the next room, taking care of Greg, and then she pulled me aside. “Why didn’t Trevor come? I think Remington was actually looking forward to showing off his son to his brother.”
    • “I know, Christa, I’m sorry,” I said, with a pained look. “He had to work late tonight, finishing up a project that could lead to his next promotion. You know I wanted him to be here!” “Yeah, I know,” Christa replied, looking sad. “I just want my husband to have everything he wants, you know? And he wanted his brother here, I think. He never actually said so, but I could tell.”
    • “Well, that means maybe it’s time for us to interfere! What do you think, Christa?” Christa put her hands on her hips and looked at her sister with a doubtful look in her eye. “I’m not sure, Jane. If Trevor isn’t ready, it could end badly, even if Remington does seem to want to have a relationship with him. I don’t want to ruin things before they even get started.” “So we’ll spend a little time planning something! We won’t rush it, but I can at least put the bug in Trevor’s ear, so he knows what’s coming.”
    • “Okay, maybe,” Christa said, after contemplating the idea. “But we take our time working something out, and I’m going to make sure Remington is up for it before I agree to anything.” I smiled wide at her. “No problem, Sis. This will work! You watch.”
    • Around the same time as baby Greg’s birthday, it was also time for little Tony Wilson to grow up into a toddler, as well. His fathers decided not to throw a birthday party for their little boy, since they had just seen everyone at Christa’s house, so they took him to his cake with just his Aunt Maggie to watch. Tony turned out to have a delightful mix of his parents’ genetics.
    • After the one failed date with Ellen O’Mackey, Alma was true to her word to her friend and mentor Mallory the Good Witch. She worked hard on her studies for school and witchcraft, eliminating all non-family socializing from her life. She developed a routine of school, homework, hanging out with whichever family member came home from school with her, and then spending the evening alternating between studying her skills and her magic. “Hey Mom, thanks for making me this awesome dress! I love it!” She called to her mother after changing into the clothes Emma had made for her. Truly, the colors, the slight bell of the sleeves – it fit her personality perfectly.
    • She also loved helping out with her baby nephews, doting on the boys whenever she wasn’t busy with something else. She felt a special bond with the twins, since she lived at home with them from the time they were born – something that unfortunately couldn’t be true for all of her other nieces and nephews. Indeed, she was the first person to hold the boys, other than their mother.
    • Shortly after the twins were born, Alma brought newly teenaged John Lee home from school with her. “Gah, I can’t believe I’m in high school with my nephew, of all things. Shouldn’t you still be in diapers?” John Lee lined up his shot before chuckling at his perturbed Aunt. “Hey, don’t blame me that you’re so much younger than my father. I didn’t have anything to do with it.” He let his shot go, sinking his ball.
    • John Lee moved around the table for his next shot. “Anyway, I’m a freshman and you’re a senior – we won’t be in the same school for long.” “Yeah, I know.” John Lee sank another ball and then changed the subject. “So, how come you don’t have a boyfriend?” He glanced at her as she stood there sparkling. “The witch thing doesn’t keep you from having a social life, does it?”
    • “Well, first of all,” Alma replied as he moved around the table again. “I’m gay, so your question should be, why don’t I have a girlfriend, not boyfriend. Second of all, no the witch thing doesn’t prevent me from dating. But there’s just no one good at school for me, you know? Most of the girls my age are my cousins, no matter how distant, and most of them are straight anyway. And Ellen and I didn’t really hit it off.” She looked up to see him sinking another ball. “And what the heck, nephew, aren’t you going to let your Aunt have even one turn at this game?” She laughed, and he joined her. “Hey, sorry, I rule at this. I hear you on the related girls thing, though. Although I still don’t seem to have trouble finding girls to hook up with.” “Well, first of all, you’re straight, so it’s easier for you. And second of all, you’re a freaking romance Sim with low standards, so there isn’t much challenge for you anyway, is there?” John Lee laughed. “Okay, you’ve got me there.”
    • “Wow, am I finally getting a turn at this game?” Alma asked as John Lee missed his next shot. She concentrated on the table, picking her strategy for getting through the next couple of shots. Just as she was getting ready to line up her cue, though, she heard the cries of the twins upstairs. She happily plopped her cue stick down on the table. “Come on, nephew, you can come help me with your baby cousins.”
    • “So, infants, huh?” John Lee said, with a bit of a tremor in his voice. “I can’t break him, can I?” Alma laughed. “No, silly, they’re babies, not glass bottles.” “So which one am I holding, anyway?” Alma looked up from the bottle she was feeding the boy in her arms. “You have Joey.” John Lee looked down at his cousin. “Hi Joey. I’m John Lee. I’ve never held a baby before, so go easy on me, okay?” Joey gurgled and laughed. “Hey, I think he likes me!”
    • Around this same time, the first part of the sixth generation was preparing for the end of their lives. Three of Dolly and Jihoon’s four children lived in New Riverblossom, and they all came together for a bit of a reunion at Eugene’s house. Emma enjoyed spending an evening in the company of her brothers, Eugene and Ernie.
    • L to R: Eugene, Emma, Ernie. Not pictured: Emily, who is currently living in Belladonna Cove with her family.
    • The Grim Reaper came for each of the men shortly after their family reunion. Eugene died alone – his roommate and lover, Vyn, was at work at the time. Ernie died in the company of his wife’s plantsim daughter. He left behind his wife, Callie, their plantsim daughter Marigold, and their daughter, Lilly.
    • I had thrilled in the chance to go back to work after I had the boys, but I still made sure to enjoy their time as babies. All too soon it was over, though, and the babies were being brought to their birthday cakes. My sparkly sister Alma helped out with the baby tossing.
    • But I made sure to take my place with the other boy. Soon we had two active toddlers on our hands, and as nice as it is getting two children in just one pregnancy, toddlers are a handful, and two of them seems to be more than double the work! Don’t let anyone tell you any different.
    • My boys sure are cuties, though. Joey (on the left) and Danny (on the right) look a lot like their father, I think, but they have a good bit of me in them, still. They’re going to want to kill me, one day, for taking their pictures on the potty. But that’s okay. They can do the same thing to their kids someday.
    • As tends to happen in households containing small children, Joey and Danny monopolized everyone’s attention for a while. Their grandparents were not immune to the boys’ charms. “Hey little boy – you’re Joey, right? You’ll have to excuse your old grandfather, my mind isn’t what it used to be,” Nick said to Danny, not Joey. “Anyway, little Joe, I think it’s time you learned to walk, don’t you? I mean, you’re not getting any younger, and you can’t crawl everywhere you go. You’d look pretty silly crawling into a board meeting, I’ll tell you that.” Upstairs, a more sane conversation was taking place. “Joseph Finch, how in the world do you get so dirty when all you do is play in the nursery most of the day? Hmm?” Emma watched as the little boy she was bathing splashed the water with his hand, soaking the front of her pajamas in the process. “Oh! Good job, Joey, now I’ve got to go change when I’m done with you,” she laughed.
    • When they weren’t being taken care of by the adults and elders in the house, Joey and Danny loved nothing more than to spend time together at their activity table, drawing and playing with blocks, while talking to each other in what can only be described as their own private language. They always seemed to know what the other one was saying, but no Sim in the house over the age of two could understand a bit of it.
    • The two boys were the best of friends in no time.
    • Trevor and I conceived our third baby while the twins were still toddlers. I’m not naturally much of a worrier, but I have to admit, I spent some time while I was pregnant hovering over my sons, worrying. I have two children who are toddlers, a third baby on the way, my husband is spending all of his time skilling for work, my father is slowly losing his mind, and of course my husband and his brother still haven’t reunited, despite my best efforts to force them to. What is a legacy heir to do? There are 364 days a year when none of this would bother me at all. But this happens to be the 365 th day, I guess. I’m worried. Hopefully the morning will bring a renewed faith and confidence.
    • Nick may have been slowly losing his mind to senility, but he still remained active, helping out with the boys as well as he could. He may not remember who he was teaching to talk, but teach them he would. “Come on, Jakey, say Daddy” he said to a confused Joey. “Not Jakey! Joey! Silly G’anpa,” said Joey, who knew perfectly well how to talk, thank you very much. “Oh! That was a lot of words, Jimmy! But you still haven’t said Daddy. Say Daddy!” Joey tilted his head and looked at his grandfather, looking much like a confused puppy. “Daddy?” He asked, knowing perfectly well that Nick was NOT his Daddy. “Oh! Good boy! I knew you could do it! Now let’s get you into your high chair – you deserve a cookie.” “Cookie!” Joey squealed. “I love G’anpa.”
    • I was right – the next morning did dawn worry free. Sure, there were problems to face, but they would all work themselves out somehow – problems had a way of doing that. Besides, it wouldn’t be long before I would be back at work, and wouldn’t have time to worry about other things. I was coming up from the basement, where I had been playing a couple hands of solo poker, when I went into labor on the stairs. Giving birth doesn’t get any easier! Aaaggh! I will never forget this pain!
    • Of course, the arrival of a beautiful baby girl quickly made the pain leave my mind. “Well hello, little girl! Welcome to our family! How do you like the name Genevieve? Because that’s your name, I think. It suits you! You look like a Genevieve! My newborn daughter, much like her older brothers, has brown hair and gray eyes, and she’s an absolute cutie. I can’t wait to see her grow up. And I really can’t wait to get back to work. Staying at home is never good for my peace of mind.
    • The morning after Genevieve was born, it was actually the weekend, and Trevor and I were able to wake up together and take a few minutes talking before starting our day with the boys and our new daughter. So of course I took this rare opportunity to talk to Trevor about his brother. “Okay, Trevor, it’s almost summer now, and you and Remington still haven’t made peace with each other. What do you say that we arrange a barbecue with Christa and Remington soon? You two can socialize in a stress-free environment and start to get to know each other again.”
    • “Jane, I asked you to let me do this on my own time.” “I know, honey, but your time has turned into years. Our boys are toddlers already, and they’ve never even met their Uncle!” “Well, you know what? The phone works both ways, and he knows where we live. He could have come over here or called, and he hasn’t done that, either.”
    • At those words I just stared at him for a minute, before shaking my head. “Oh no, that doesn’t work with me, Trevor. You can only control your own actions, and so far you’re just acting afraid to do anything to make friends with your brother.” Trevor sighed and just looked at me sadly.
    • “You just don’t know what it’s like, Jane. You’ve always been close to your family.” He took a deep breath. “I grew up knowing I had a brother. My Mom talked about Remington sometimes. She’d tell me what he had been like when he was my age, and she’d tell me I’d get to meet him someday. I used to hope so much for the day when I’d get to finally meet him. I thought we would become friends, that it would be so great to have a brother. But then when I finally did meet him, he was…well, he was mean to me. Looking back on it now, I guess he was mad at our Mom, but he took it out on me. He didn’t want to see me, he didn’t want to talk to me, he didn’t want me hanging around. It hurt. At first I was kind of pathetic, following him around, wanting to have a relationship with him. But then, when I got older, I decided screw him. If he didn’t care about me, I wouldn’t care about him.”
    • “Wait, I need to be clear here – you have almost never talked about this before now. Why were you separated from Remington as a child? I know you have different Dads.” “That’s exactly why. My Mom and Remington’s Dad were married, and they had Remington together. But Mom wasn’t happy, I guess, because when she met my Dad, she fell for him. They started having an affair, and she got pregnant with me. As soon as she found out she was pregnant, she left her first husband. Remington’s Dad was apparently furious – understandably so, I guess. He didn’t want anything to do with her, and he wouldn’t let her see Remington for a long time – which is why I didn’t get to meet him until I was a child, and he was a teen.”
    • “Wow. That must have been hard on Remington.” “On Remington? I’m the one he was mean to, and I never did anything to him! I didn’t ask to get born.” I reached over and patted his hand. “I know, honey, but think about it from Remington’s point of view. He’s a little kid, he thinks his parents are happy, and then suddenly his mother is gone and he can’t see her anymore. And if his father was angry enough to keep her away from him, who knows what he told her about him? He might have thought she didn’t even want him – that she loved you and your father more than she loved him.” Trevor considered this. “Yeah, I guess. I never thought about it from his side, really.”
    • “Anyway, what’s done is done. He was mean to me when I was a kid, then when he tried to be nice to me when I was a teenager, I basically told him to take a hike. “ Trevor looked over at Jane with a slightly wounded, sad look in his eyes. “How will we ever become friends now?” “Trevor, you just start talking to him. You’ll never get anywhere if you keep ignoring each other.”
    • “You’re right.” Trevor pulled her into his arms. “I love you, Jane.” “I love you too. I’ll call Christa this morning to see if she and Remington can come over later for a cookout. They can bring Greg with them, so he can get to know his cousins, and you and Remington can start to talk in a no pressure environment. Jane threaded her fingers in her husband’s. “Now hurry up and make love to me before our sons come barreling in here to ask us to go play catch with them, or something.”
    • And that’s it for chapter 24 of the PGT! As a parting gift, enjoy a series of pictures of a misguided redheaded woman who came home from work with Trevor, and for some reason decided to poke at Emma. Emma quickly proved that she is STILL not a woman to be messed with, as she gave as good as she got, and then spent the rest of the night stalking the woman around the house, hitting her fist into her hand and making mean faces. The redheaded woman was sent home for her own safety. Hee. Thanks for reading!