Yakko's world owbc chapter twenty two


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Sophomore Slump as Palau realizes a few things and romance is in the air.

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Yakko's world owbc chapter twenty two

  1. 1. Hi! How are you? Do you like beans? Do you like George Wendt? Do you remember what happened last time? Good. Let’s get going.
  2. 2. ~*~
  3. 3. “This the place?” Joss asked. “Looks like a dump.” “It’s a tattoo joint, I think that’s a requirement,” Palau answered back. “Don’t worry, they don’t do crap.” “Who said I was fucking worried? I just said it looks like a dump.” Palau rolled her eyes. “Smart ass,” she muttered under her breath as she walked in the door.
  4. 4. “Hey guys!” Palau called out as she entered the shop. “Got room for two walk ins?” The mohawked tattoo artist looked up from the counter and called back “Hey there, it’s the jailbait. For you, we’ll make time. What you got in mind? More fishies?”
  5. 5. “Koi and yes. I’d also like to get a few piercings while I’m at it,” she answered back.
  6. 6. “Did I hear something about piercings?” Archie leered, turning to look at Palau. “They’d better not be nipple piercings, Jailbait. You’re too young for that shit.”
  7. 7. He stopped and then turned around fully. “Or maybe not. Hello, Jailbait.” “Hey, Old man. Long time, no see.” “No shit. What the fuck happened to you?” “What’s it fucking look like? I grew up and shit.”
  8. 8. “I see that! Nice and firm!”
  9. 9. “Archie!” He grinned. “What’d you expect me to do? Offer you flowers?” “That’d be nicer than just ‘Hi. Hello. Butt grab.’” “What can I say, I don’t do conventional.” he said with a shrug.
  10. 10. Then he pulled a rose out of nowhere and handed it to her. “Still, if that’s what you want, Jailbait. Never let it be said that the little bastard didn’t satisfy his ladies.” Palau laughed, but didn’t take the rose. “I’m not one of your ladies, Old man.” “Not yet.”
  11. 11. Palau laughed even harder. “You’re so fucking full yourself. I wonder what would happen if a woman turned you down.” “Hasn’t happened yet, not going to happen. I’m good at what I do and the ladies fucking know it.” “So you’re good in the sack?” “Fucking excellent, if I do say so myself. I’d rock your world and have you begging for more.”
  12. 12. “We’ll see about that.” “Are you giving me a fucking challenge, Jailbait?” “Are you up to it, Old Man?” “Any day, any time.” “Fine, I’ll call you. You don’t call me, you got that, Old Man?”
  13. 13. “Loud and clear.” He paused and looked over her shoulder. “Who’s the jackass in the bandana?”
  14. 14. Palau cracked up. “Oh gods! I can’t believe you don’t fucking know. Oh gods! This is too fucking rich.” “What’s too fucking rich?” Archie narrowed his eyes. Palau just shook her head. “Hey Joss, your Uncle Archie wants to know who you are?” She called back over her shoulder. Joss’ reply was to flip off his cousin and her friend and continue talking with Jack. Archie the other hand, snorted. “So that’s the little thumb sucker? Haven’t seen him in a while.” “That seems to be a recurring theme with you.”
  15. 15. “Hey, I got places to go, people to fuck. I ain’t got time to keep up with all of the rugrats my pseudo-relatives are spawning.” “Yeah, I bet that’s what you tell yourself when you go home to your empty bed each night.” “I’m Archie Fucking Vetinari, my bed is never empty.” “I hear denial and delusions are the first sign of old age, Old Man. You might want to get yourself checked out.”
  16. 16. “You offering to play doctor?” Archie asked with a leer. “I could go for that.” “Me? Do I look like a vet to you?” “Ouch. I’m hurt,” his voice conveyed otherwise. “I don’t think so. But as fun as this witty repartee is, I’ve got a tat to get.”
  17. 17. “Any chance of you taking off your top while I can watch?” “Maybe. But not here. It was nice seeing you again, Old man.” “Likewise, Jailbait.” ~*~
  18. 18. ~*~ Kor and Lily walked up the brick sidewalk to Lily’s large and imposing house. With each step he took, Kor felt the knot in his stomach getting tighter and tighter. He’d been all gung ho a few months ago back in college, but now with the very real possibility staring him in the face he was starting to get nervous.
  19. 19. “This was a bad idea, Lil. Maybe we should do this another time,” he said before his girlfriend had time to open the door. She stopped and looked at him. “You’re the one who wanted to set this up,” she reminded him. “Besides, my father’s waiting.” Glancing out of the corner of his eye, he could see Mr. Fitzhugh waiting impatiently in the front hallway. “I know, that’s part of the problem.” Lily raised her eyebrows. “And running away is going to help?”
  20. 20. “It couldn’t hurt,” he answered. “Besides your dad is going to kill me. I mean, just look at him!” He motioned to the red-haired man waiting inside cracking his knuckles with cheerful enthusiasm. “Daddy’s just messing with you. He’s really a sweetie,” Lily tried to soothe him. “To you, maybe. You’re his little girl. Me, I’m the schmuck who’s dating you. He’s gonna cream me.” “Oh man up, Kor. Daddy won’t hurt you because he knows that it’ll make me mad. He might try to scare you, don’t let him.” Kor took a deep breath. “Fine, I’ll try.” “Good, let’s go. We’ve got dinner plans in an hour and I don’t want to be late.”
  21. 21. “Hey, Daddy!” “Heya Lils, is this the boy you’ve been telling me about?” “Yep. Don’t kill him okay? I’m going to run upstairs and get ready. You’ve got thirty minutes.” “Got it,” Rhys said with a chuckle.
  22. 22. “You heard my daughter, I’ve got thirty minutes to do what I want to you. Let’s take a seat while I polish my gun collection.” “You don’t have a gun collection, sir,” Kor said after a moment. “That’s what Lils thinks. Go on, take a seat. I’ll be right behind you.” “Not the most comforting of words.” “Wuss.” “Prudent,” Kor countered.
  23. 23. “Fine, I suppose I can cut you a little slack. Besides this is going to be fun.” “For you, maybe.” “Yep. I’ve been looking forward to this day. Too bad that woman threw out the pitchfork Marina gave me as a wedding present. It’d be really useful right now. I guess I’ll just have to stick with the old stand by.” “And what’s that, sir?” Rhys grinned. “That’d be telling. So what’d you want to talk to me about? As if I don’t already know. But I’m looking forward to seeing if I’m right. And I usually am.”
  24. 24. Kor took a seat and looked up at the man who was going to be his father-in-law if he managed to survive the next hour and took a deep breath. “I want to ask for your daughter’s hand in marriage, sir.”
  25. 25. “Called it! I totally knew you were going to ask that. Am I good or what?”
  26. 26. “Do you really want me to answer that, sir?” “No need. I know how awesome I am.”
  27. 27. “So can I please have your answer, sir?” “Sure thing!” Rhys said leaning forward a little. “No.” "What?" Kor was sure he'd heard the man wrong. "Are you deaf as well as formal? I said ‘no.’" Rhys crossed his arms and smirked at Kor. "What are you doing to do about it?"
  28. 28. What was he going to do about it? He'd loved Lily since he was seven years old. He'd dreamed about marrying her since he was in middle school. She was the only girl he'd ever been interested in. The only one who knew all of his hopes and his fears and who he could talk to without reservations. To not be able to marry her, why it was unthinkable. And then he had his answer. He straightened his shoulders and his black eyes hardened and got to his face. "Then I guess we'll have to elope. Because I am marrying Lily with or without your permission. Assuming she'll have me, of course."
  29. 29. "Let me get this straight. You asked me BEFORE you asked my daughter?" "I wanted to do this right. Get your permission first. But if I can't, then fuck it. I'm not going to let you or anyone else stop us from being together." Kor's hands had curled themselves into fists as he talked. Rhys smirk widened and he glanced over his shoulder toward the stairs. "Good enough for you, Lils?"
  30. 30. Kor's eyes followed the other man's gaze and saw Lily standing at the base of the stairs watching the whole thing. "Lily," he breathed. The woman looked at him with a mixture of fondness and exasperation on her face. "Kor, you're damn lucky I love you because seriously, asking my father for permission. Not the smartest of ideas. Even though I was pretty sure what you wanted to do."
  31. 31. Kor nodded, walking over to her. When he reached her, he took her hands in his and stared into her violet eyes. "I needed to do it, Lily. Don't you understand? I needed to show the world that we aren't Romeo and Juliet, we aren't Tristan and Isolde, we aren't Pyramus and Thisbe. We aren't two star-crossed lovers. We're merely lovers who've happened to overcome some pretty hellacious stuff and lived to tell the tale." "I thought you were a Philosophy major, not a Literature major." "I am. But I helped you enough with your homework to learn a few things," he replied. “Come on, we’ve got dinner waiting.” “Don’t wait up, Daddy,” she said looking at the red-haired man smiling at the two of them indulgently. “I wasn’t planning on it. Have fun kids.”
  32. 32. Dinner was almost an after thought after the pre-dinner conversation.
  33. 33. After dinner, Kor asked the question that he’d dreamed of asking since he was seven years old.
  34. 34. Naturally, she said yes. ~*~
  35. 35. ~*~
  36. 36. Life back at the main house had fallen back into a fairly normal pattern. The parents expressed their love in lots of interesting ways. “And my boobies were out to here!” “Narf! That’s one special Halloween costume, Miss Fuzzy! Naughty nurse. Rawr!”
  37. 37. “And Iiiiiii-ai-ay-iiii will not have more kiiiidds!” “Oh Miss Fuzzy, you know how to say the sweetest things! Let’s celebrate by not making a baby!”
  38. 38. They did and disapproving painting disapproves of their shenanigans.
  39. 39. Morning constitutional taken care of, Orkney sets off for his one day of work a week. While his family carried on with their daily chores.
  40. 40. Romania the reluctant bug nut hunted for bugs.
  41. 41. With limited success. “Couldn’t you have Meri do this? She’d like it a lot more than me.” I would move it if I could, but I’ve already declared you the bugnut for the generation. I don’t think I can take it back now. “Nuts.”
  42. 42. “Still, this isn’t so bad if I can actually find the stupid buggers. Now can I do something fun like talk to someone?”
  43. 43. “Red hands?” “Dude, you have bug guts all over them!” Random Archie Vetinari spawn protested. “But...” “Come back when you aren’t so stinky.”
  44. 44. “What are you doing here?” “Waiting for your sister to clean up her act.” “How long are you willing to wait?”
  45. 45. “There’s a ghost out.”
  46. 46. “Dude, there’s no way I’m going to play red hands with you now or ever.” “But!”
  47. 47. “I’m outta here.” “But it wasn’t my fault! Wakko’s the one who ate her.” “And that’s my cue to leave. Buh-bye!”
  48. 48. The random teen townie ghost really was ruthless. Hitting Meri and Romania multiple times through out the night.
  49. 49. Traumatizing them both.
  50. 50. But ghosts can’t stand in the way of progress, so after she cleaned herself off. It was time to send Romania back out for more bugs. “I hate my director-person. I think I’m going to start a club.” I think that club was already started in this ‘hood by your Uncle Frank or Uncle Onslow. But you’re welcome to try again.
  51. 51. We will end on this completely necessary shot of Orkney brushing his teeth wearing naught but a fig leaf. Because we all need a little Orkney in our lives. ~*~
  52. 52. ~*~
  53. 53. “You can do this, Palau. You can do this, Palau. It’s not like he’s fucked almost every woman in Belladonna. Oh wait, he has. What’s one more? It’s not like you’re looking for a relationship. You’ve got director-person damned betrothed. You’re just looking for fun. Maybe a nice spot of woohoo. He can do woohoo.”
  54. 54. Palau sighed and slumped a little more on the front steps. “Aww, who am I trying to kid? I like him. I’ve always liked him. How fucked up is that?” She sighed again. “And he still sees me as fucking jailbait. Like it’s my fucking fault that he’s been here since the director-damned challenge started and I’m a born-in game kid. It’s not like aging in this hood makes sense.” She looked up at the sky. “You’ve got to stop this, Palau. Feeling sorry for myself isn’t going to change a fucking thing. And talking to yourself just makes you sound like an idiot. Get off of your ass and call him. What’s the worst he could say?”
  55. 55. “And he might say yes.”
  56. 56. Forcing herself to her feet, Palau dialed the number Archie’d slipped down her shirt at the tattoo parlor. “Hey, it’s me. I was wondering if you wanted to go out tonight?”
  57. 57. Palau shouldn’t have been surprised that he’d said yes. They met up at one of the random community lots in Belladonna Cove. She’d suggested it because it was supposed to have a lot of fun things to do. Fun things were good, right?
  58. 58. “You invited me out to play on the fucking swings?” Archie asked, half-amused and half-annoyed. “What are we twelve?” “Uhhh…” Palau tried but couldn’t really think of a good answer. “I was thinking maybe you could push me?” “Again, I ask, what are we fucking twelve. I don’t do jailbait, Jailbait. Let me know when you want to do something more adult, until then I’ll be at the bar.” As he left, Palau muttered to herself, “Way to fucking go, Palau. Fucking genius. Well, this date’s shot. I’d better go throw in the towel.”
  59. 59. Approaching the oddly hot man, Palau said, “Hey, I think I’d better go. Sorry for dragging you out like this.” He shot her a glance and then motioned to the bartender to get another drink. In a few seconds two drinks were sitting on the bar. Archie handed her one and taking a drink from the other. “You haven’t been a date before, have you?”
  60. 60. Palau slipped past him and took a large drink. The liquor was harsh and burned going down her throat. It was completely different from the spiked punch of the night she died or the tiki drinks from Spicoli’s. It was the perfect drink for the Little Bastard. “I didn’t think it was that obvious.” “Jailbait, it was as obvious as the ass on a blue bottomed baboon.”
  61. 61. “And you’re all experienced and shit, I get it. Age has to count for something, doesn’t it, Old Man?” Archie shrugged. “Want some advice?” “Can I stop you from giving it?” “Nope!” “Then by all means, advise away.”
  62. 62. “Relax and enjoy yourself, Jailbait. We won’t do anything you’re uncomfortable with doing.” Palau made a face. “What’s that supposed to mean?” Archie finished the rest of his drink. “Why don’t we take this outside?” Eyeing the drink in her hand, Palau downed it in one gulp. “Fine. Let’s.”
  63. 63. When they got outside, Palau confronted Archie. “What in the hell was that? I suppose you’ll say ‘I‘ll be gentle’ next, Old Man. Like some bad porno or teen movie. Well you can shove it. I’m not as inexperienced as all that.” “Whoa, calm your tits, Jailbait. I wasn’t propositioning you in there.” Palau looked at him, confused. “You weren’t?” Then she got annoyed. “Why the hell not? Aren’t you Archie Fucking Vetinari? Isn’t that what you do?”
  64. 64. “So you mean you want me to proposition you?” Palau rolled her eyes. “I didn’t ask you out because I wanted to play mary mack and have lemonade.” “Then why’d you pick this fucking place?”
  65. 65. “I saw a flyer, okay? It sounded like fun and I’d thought it’d have a photobooth or hot tub.” “Are you propositioning me, Jailbait?” “Maybe? I just want to have a good time while I can.” Archie’s eyes narrowed. “I can show you a good time. Why don’t we get out of here?” “Got anyplace in mind?”
  66. 66. As it turned out he did.
  67. 67. “What’s are we doing here? It looks like a dive bar.” “It is a dive bar.” “Dive bars don’t have hot tubs.” Archie shrugged. “I like to be unpredictable.” “So what are we supposed to do? I bet this place doesn’t even have a photobooth.” “It doesn’t.”
  68. 68. “So what’d you have planned.” “I thought we’d get a drink and talk.” “Talk? Is that what they’re calling woohoo these days?” “Look, as much as I like to woohoo. And I’m Archie Fucking Vetinari, of course I fucking do, do you want me to be your one night stand that you regret? Because, I’m cool with whatever you fucking choose either way.” “This isn’t like you. Why are you doing this?” she asked him, confused. Archie grunted. “You don’t cry when I prank you.”
  69. 69. “That seems like a messed up reason.” “It is what it is. I don’t do feelings. What’d you want me to say? ‘Oh Palau Warner, you’re my BFF let’s have braid each other’s hair and talk about boys!’ Pfft, please!” Palau couldn’t help it, she laughed. “Then why do you want to talk?” “I don’t. You seem to need to. You can vent for a bit and then I’ll suggest we woohoo to let off some steam and then you say yes and everyone goes home happy. Sound like a good deal?” “Deal.”
  70. 70. They sat down and Palau looked over at Archie. “I’m not really sure where to begin.” “Doesn’t matter to me. Beginning, Middle, End. So long as there’s woohoo after all of this, I’ll deal with the foreplay.” “So this is foreplay for you?” “No. Foreplay for me is the woman saying ‘Wanna go back to my place?’ But women got different ideas.” “You don’t say? And is it just me or did it get really dark all of a sudden?” “It’s seven. It does this every night. Whole fucking sims universe is stuck on a damned equinox,” he explained, rolling his eyes. “And if you’re done lampshade hanging can we get this over with so we can get to the fucking?” “Yeah.”
  71. 71. “So I’m heir to my family’s challenge,” Palau stated as if it explained everything. “So?” Archie challenged. “It means I’ve got to marry this skeevy simself and pop out three kids with him and what’s worse I’ve the Reaper Office pushing the guy who kept me sane while I was dead to knock me up because they want my kid for some kind of genetic experiment. And all of this means that I don’t get to do what want with who I want and it sucks!” “Who says you don’t get to do what you fucking want?” “The director-person damned rules!” “So fuck ‘em.”
  72. 72. “Don’t I wish it were that fucking easy! But no, if I screw the rules, the family fails the challenge and this whole thing’s over.” “And is that really that bad of thing? It’d be over and you could do what you want with who you want.” “But then I’d be forever known as the selfish bitch who lost the Yakko’s World OWBC.” “Yep.” “I don’t want to be that either.” “Then you need to figure out if you’re gonna shit or get off of the pot. Either you follow the rules or you don’t. Seems pretty simple to me.” “It’s not that easy. It’s not that simple!”
  73. 73. “Sure it is. You just don’t fucking see it. But that’s not all that’s bugging you. So spill so we can get to the fucking.” “I died.” “So did I. Back in my original hood. I don’t remember it all that much, but I’ve read the fucking story.” “Yeah, that’s the problem. I do. I remember dying and being dead and even other worlds I’ve been in.” “That’s fucked up.” “Tell me about it. It’s why the Reaper Office wants me. There aren’t that many of resurrected simself kids out there who died prematurely.”
  74. 74. “So how are they planning on knocking you up? Alien probing? Possessing your husband? Tombstone of Life and Death?” “Blackmail. They’ve threatened the one guy I liked and trusted when I was dead to do the deed if he refuses they send someone else to do it. And they implied that the replacement sperm donor won’t care about my wants.” Archie’s eyes darkened for an instant. “Limp dick mother fuckers.” “Yeah, pretty much. At least Spicoli was up front about what’s gonna happen. Given the choice between a stranger raping me and sex with a friend, I’ll pick the friend.” “Fucking makes sense.” He paused for a moment, then asked, “So have you vented enough?” Palau thought about it for a moment. “Yeah, I think I have. Thanks. It’s nice having someone to listen.”
  75. 75. “No problem. So how about we get to the fucking now?” Archie asked pulling Palau in for a kiss. “Now? Here?” “Sure, why not? Or would you rather someplace more private for your first time?”
  76. 76. “It’s not my first time.” “Even better.”
  77. 77. “That was fun,” Palau said, pulling on her clothes. “Yeah, it was. The Little Bastard likes to make his ladies happy. So are you up for another round of shocking the norms?” he asked, eyeing the bench again.
  78. 78. “Not now. I should get going. I’ve got rules to check and homework to do. Thanks for being a friend tonight as well as a lover. I think I needed a friend more.” “I aim to fucking please.” “You really did.”
  79. 79. Palau called a taxi to take her back to La Fiesta Tech, as she got in the vehicle, Archie leaned down to give her a kiss. “If you have an itch to scratch or an asshole to pummel, you know who to call.” “Thanks. I’ll keep it in mind,” Palau said. “I’ll give you a call sometime.” “You’d better.” ~*~
  80. 80. ~*~
  81. 81. “I’m cleaning all the toilets, yes, cleaning all the toilets. What a glorious feeling, I’m happy to clean!” Erin Devereaux sang to herself. She refused to think about the fact that without Quinn around and her father living in another house that no one else wanted to clean the toilets. Nope, it wasn’t on her mind at all. No-sirree-bob.
  82. 82. “Hey-yo, Mommy-o, is that a cup I see? Can I wash it for you?” “Um. Not yet,” Eden said, eyeing her daughter out of the corner of her eye. “I was planning on drinking from it.” “Oh. Well, then would you mind if I helped myself to the other espresso?” She didn’t wait for her mother to say no and grabbed the handleless cup.
  83. 83. “I suppose it would be pointless to say no now?” Eden asked her daughter. “Yep, totally pointless,” Erin agreed taking a small sip of the scalding liquid. “Out of curiosity, why do you want espresso? Especially so late at night?”
  84. 84. “I could ask you the same question, Mom,” Erin pointed out. Eden looked away with an apologetic expression on her face. “It’s the hours. I’m not used to them?” she offered, awkwardly.
  85. 85. “You know that’s not true, Mom,” Erin said, narrowing her eyes. “What’s the real problem?”
  86. 86. Eden sighed and took a long sip of her coffee. “Your father’s there.” “Oh,” Erin mumbled, lamely. “Yeah. Oh. I just can’t let anything distract me from resurrecting Quinn. I’m lucky to have this chance. I can’t screw it up.” Erin nodded and downed the rest of her espresso and fled to her room. This world was just screwed up. She wished she were back home in her own universe where things were safe and normal. ~*~
  87. 87. From plotty to random. We now turn to the triplets and their college years. They’ve been plopped into one of the larger dorms on campus and allowed to run free. Fair warning, I’ll likely be cutting them out from here on unless I need some filler or levity. Lebanon, Latvia, and Liberia and their respective beaus are going to get relegated to background characters. Mostly because I’ve got a lot of stuff to get through and am currently fighting against hood corruption and computer issues. I figure people want to see me finish this challenge. Right? Okay. Let’s go!
  88. 88. The arrival of the triplets at college meant that Chicken Boo’s arch-nemesis, Kwai Chang Gnome, was finally able to make his debut.
  89. 89. And then he promptly got stolen by one of the Davis twins. Bravo! The poor Kwai Chang Gnome, he didn’t even have time for a villainous monologue.
  90. 90. Not like the triplets minded. Lebanon would steal him back later. She was reliable that way. Also I lost Lebanon’s original hair in a CC cull. I think this style still looks good on her but a little more mature.
  91. 91. See?
  92. 92. She also stole back Kwei Chang Gnome’s identical grandson of the same name.
  93. 93. “Can I talk to you?” “No. I have eight commands a day and I’m not about to waste them.” “How about a kiss?” “What’d I just say?” “Leap into arms?” “Just go away. I’ll find you later when I’m on free will.” “If you insist.”
  94. 94. “So what’d you want to talk about? I used one of my commands just so I could join you.” “It is nothing. I find the history of your hood most fascinating. Is it true that your grandfather was locked in a water tower for fifty years?” “Don’t make me use one of my commands to smack you. What’d you want?”
  95. 95. “I am afraid I have once more been indiscreet.” “Oh. With who?” “Your sister.” “Which one?” “I am afraid a better question would be which ones.” “Ah, I see. And was this recent.”
  96. 96. “Twas right before we arrived at university.” “So no harm, no foul. I wasn’t controllable then and you weren’t either. And moving to college wipes the slate. Just behave yourself and we’ll be good. And by that, I mean I won’t have to kick your ass.” “Indeed you are most forgiving.” “Don’t mention it.” “I shan’t.” “Good.”
  97. 97. Early drama over and because Latvia wanted to throw a party, the triplets invited a few simselves and the other college house over.
  98. 98. “Oh yeah, Marina’s hot!” “Well, this is awkward.”
  99. 99. “How’s it hanging? Think I can interest you in a date later?” “But not quite as awkward as this.” “I see that heartfart and I fuckin’ approve.” “Joss, just cause I won your bachelor challenge doesn’t mean that we can just hop in the sack here.” “Got it. No sack hopping. But since you won, that means I’m fucking going to call you later.” “I know.”
  100. 100. “Mr. Fitzhugh, it’s nice to see you. I wasn’t sure you’d come.” “Of course I’d come, you’re one of my favorite students.” “Yeah, about that. I’m not one of your students anymore.”
  101. 101. “I’ve noticed,” Spencer said, looking up at Latvia, his eyes warm. Latvia took a deep breath. “I know you’d never ask me but, have you… I mean, could you… I mean, would you consider dating one of your former students?” “It depends on the student.”
  102. 102. “If it were me?” Spencer didn’t say anything but just reached out to take hold of Latvia’s hand.
  103. 103. “Mind if I join you?” Joss said, sitting down in front of Henry Austen. “Please do, good sir.” “Good. So you’re seeing my cousin Lebanon? Care for a little friendly advice?” “I always welcome friendly advice.” “Keep your dick in your pants and your lips to yourself.”
  104. 104. Henry choked on his macaroni and cheese. “I am not sure I heard you correctly, good sir.” “You heard me just fucking fine. Keep it in your pants if you value your penis.” “Are you threatening me?”
  105. 105. “A little,” Joss admitted. “But I’m not the one you need to worry about. Lebanon will cut off your bits and feed them to the birds if you piss her off. And she’ll have help. She was understanding before. But things have changed. Keep it in your pants unless Lebanon’s the one you’re taking it out for and it will save you a world of hurt later.” “I will remember your warning.” “See that you do. Now, if you’ll excuse me I’ve got a simself to woo.”
  106. 106. “My butt!” “Indeed!”
  107. 107. Because no one really cares about Liberia and Clark but me, I’m going to skip on the drama with them.
  108. 108. She proposed.
  109. 109. He said yes.
  110. 110. And then she grabbed his butt. One couple down. Two more to go.
  111. 111. NO HENRY!
  112. 112. Considering that Lebanon is the dorm’s cow killer, I’d heed Joss’s warning.
  113. 113. “Get back here! I want to kill you more! Well, there’s only one thing to do!”
  114. 114. Two down, one to go. “I need to make a phone call,” Latvia muttered to herself.
  115. 115. “Look, Mr. Fitzhugh…” “Spencer.” “You said you’d be willing to date a student and implied that you’d be willing to date me. Are you ready to put your money where your mouth is.” “My mouth isn’t where I want it to be.”
  116. 116. “Oh, where do you want it?”
  117. 117. “Let me show you.”
  118. 118. “Oh wow. That was so much better than my first kiss.” “I would hope so. I’ve got all kinds of experience your average teenage boy doesn’t.” “So what else can you show me?” “So many things.” “Like what?”
  119. 119. He showed her what.
  120. 120. She even got a positive memory out of it.
  121. 121. While Spencer helped himself to Kwai Chang Gnome’s identical grandson.
  122. 122. Then, in front of several witnesses who were all trying to tell a joke to Latvia, the young woman proposed to the man who she had fantasized about for all of her life.
  123. 123. And happily he said yes.
  124. 124. “I’m bored of all of this frivolousness, can we move it on a bit?” ~*~
  125. 125. ~*~
  126. 126. “Hey Director-Person! I can has Marina nao?” You can has.
  127. 127. “Hey, so this is awkward.” “What’s awkward?” “Well, I kind of screwed over my own sims to win you in an insane bachelor challenge.” “Ah. I don’t really remember. All I know is you won, that’s really all that fucking matters to me.” “Like, I said awkward.” “Do you not want to do this? Because I ain’t gonna force you do something you don’t want.” “Oh, no, I want this.”
  128. 128. Joss took a step toward Marina and the simself took a step back. “What?” he asked. “I don’t want to go too fast. It was a little insane in your bachelor challenge and I’d like something a little less crazy.” “So you want me to woo you?” “Kinda?” Joss shrugged. “Whatever you want. I’m cool either way.”
  129. 129. “Thanks!”
  130. 130. “I love your idea of taking it slow.” “Less talking more kissing.” “So can I show you the photobooth later?” “Sure.”
  131. 131. He showed her.
  132. 132. Back inside, Spica found Palau hiding at the end of the hallway playing darts. “What are you doing?” “What does it look like I’m doing?” “Hiding. It looks like you’re hiding.”
  133. 133. “Well, I’m not. I just don’t feel like being social.” “Is that supposed to be a hint?” “Yes. It is.” Spica snorted. “Too bad I suck at taking hints. So what’s got you so anti-social.” “Life,” Palau answered after throwing her dart. “College is almost over.”
  134. 134. “That’s a good thing, right? That means you get to have a kid and we can start resurrecting everyone.” “Yeah. Sounds so simple. It really isn’t.” “How is not simple? You get married. Pop out a kid. Bam! Bone phones!” “Speaking of, how’s your boyfriend’s mom doing with that?” Spica sighed. “I’m probably going to graduate before she can resurrect him. He was always older than me and now I’ll be the one older than him.” “So? Nothing wrong with that.”
  135. 135. “I know. But it feels wrong, you know?” Palau nodded. “Yeah, I do. I probably shouldn’t tell you this. But I don’t plan on getting married right away when I graduate.” Yanking the darts out of the corkboard so hard that the wood clattered up against the wall, Spica asked, “Why not? I thought you wanted to bring everyone back quickly.” “I do. That’s why I’m not getting married. I don’t know my simself husband to be very well and he creeps me out anyway. I was thinking of just getting knocked up by some willing sperm donor and getting married later.” “That sounds really callous.” “It is callous. But the longer I can go without Blueberry Pie touching me, the happier I’ll be.”
  136. 136. “Why does he have to touch you at all?” Spica asked, hurling a dart at the board. “If you’re willing to have bastard children, I don’t see why he has to touch you ever. You have to marry him, right?” “That’s what the fucking rules say.” “Do the rules say he has to father any or all of your children? You’re the heir. It’s not like Uncle Orkney or Grampa Yakko had a choice. They’re not girls. But you do.” Palau thought about it for a moment, then a smile spread across her face. “I’m glad you came over and bugged me, cuz.” Spica hurled another dart. “No prob, that’s what family is for.” ~*~
  137. 137. ~*~
  138. 138. “Another day, another birthday,” Rhys muttered to himself. “At least this one that woman isn’t able to make excuses for why she missed it.” He looked down at the toddler in his arms. “That’s right, Poppy, you’re going to grow up without that woman’s influence. Aren’t you a lucky girl?” Poppy didn’t respond with anything coherent. Toddlers rarely do.
  139. 139. “Hey! Would everyone stop what silly free will thing they’re doing and come in here to see my little princess grow up?” Rhys called, annoyed. Then he narrowed his eyes. That icon over Joss’s head. He knew that icon.
  140. 140. Joss had fallen in love with someone. Someone who should have known better. Marina. Rhys clenched his teeth, biting back a scathing remark. But he didn’t want to swear in front of his little girl. Still, it didn’t stop him from swearing up a blue streak internally. His simself had the worst timing ever! If everything went well at work he would be promoted to Cult Leader. Which meant that Rose was going to be resurrected tonight. Why couldn’t have Marina just kept her damned hands to herself?
  141. 141. Out of the corner of his eye, he saw his ride pull up to take him to the compound. He had to be quick about this otherwise he blow his chance. He leaned down and blew out the candles then set Poppy down on the floor to age up without him. He couldn’t afford to be late. He had several days off after tonight and Rose had been gone for too long already.
  142. 142. “What happened to your hair, Rhys?” Marina asked after he spun into his work outfit. “What do you think happened?” “But the fauxhawk!” “It’ll grow back. Some things are more important that having perfect hair.”
  143. 143. He didn’t want to admit it, but he’d shed a tear or two, manly tears, over the loss of his fauxhawk. But what he’d said to Marina was true. Some things were worth the price. And getting his daughter back was definitely worth it. ***
  144. 144. “Why’d Daddy leave?” Poppy asked Sakura, poking her birthday cake with her fork. Her older sister tilted her head and looked at her baby sister. “He had to go to work. He’s got a very important job.” “What kind of job?”
  145. 145. “Bringing back our stupid sister who got herself killed over a boy who doesn’t love her and will never love her,” Anemone snapped, grabbing a piece of cake and sitting down. “Hush, Annie!” Sakura hissed. “Don’t pay any attention to her. She’s just grumpy.” “Why’s she grumpy?” Poppy asked. Sakura was silent for a few moments before finally answering, “It’s a long story.” Anemone snorted.
  146. 146. Poppy didn’t push, but instead took a bite of her cake and asked, “Where’s Mommy?” For the second time that night, Sakura was at a loss for words. She stared at her little sister, her mouth opening and closing before finally saying, “Mom’s dead.”
  147. 147. “Oh. Does that mean Daddy will bring her back too? Like he’s going to do with our sister…” she paused not knowing her sister’s name. Sakura caught it. “Rose. She’s my twin. You also have another big sister named Lily.” Poppy nodded, taking in all of the information before returning to her question. “So is he? Gonna bring back both Mommy and Rose?”
  148. 148. “No,” Anemone said, bluntly. “He’s bringing back the lovestruck idiot and not Mom.” Her voice was hard, but she didn’t’ elaborate further.
  149. 149. Sakura tried to soften her younger sister’s words. “It’s because he can only bring back one person. Mom lived a long life. Got to fall in love. Get married. Have kids. Rose was just about to graduate from High School when she died. She didn’t get the chance to have a life at all. Not like Mom did.” She paused and smiled gently down at Poppy. “Do you understand?”
  150. 150. “I think so,” Poppy said, taking another bite of her cake. “What was Mom like?” Sakura met Anemone’s eyes and shook her head slightly. It wasn’t their place to tell Poppy about their mother. She was too young and knowing what Drea had become would only scare the child. Anemone gave a small nod of agreement. Then she turned to face Poppy. “She was really pretty and smart and really driven.” It was true. It just wasn’t THE TRUTH. But Poppy seemed to be satisfied, finishing her cake in silence.
  151. 151. Excusing herself from the table, Poppy went upstairs and settled herself down in front of the dollhouse. “And then the little girl cast a spell and her mother was alive again. Then her daddy kissed her mommy and the whole family lived happily ever after.” ***
  152. 152. It was late, almost dawn, when the compound van dropped him off in front of his house. It’d been a long day of exorcising demons and building up trust but he’d done it. Rhys’d become a Cult Leader.
  153. 153. Not even bothering to change from his work clothes or put on the expertly sculpted wig he’d had made, he pulled out the bone phone the cult had given him.
  154. 154. It was time to get his daughter back.
  155. 155. “Look, I don’t care how much it costs. You resurrect my kid right now or so help me I’ll track down the simself in charge of this world and make her bring my kid back.” He paused listening to whoever or whatever was on the other end of the line sputter. “Which kid?” he asked incredulously. “Rose Fitzhugh, you moron!” Stupid office flunky, he knew who all of his kids were in this universe. Rose was the only one who’d died.
  156. 156. Eventually the flunky found the right paperwork and he was able to get his request in. Hanging up the bone phone with poor grace, he waited for the office to get its act together.
  157. 157. It wasn’t long.
  158. 158. “Da-Daddy?” “Hey, pumpkin, long time no see,” Rhys said, his voice thick with emotion. “What happened to your hair?”
  159. 159. Unable to hold himself back any further, Rhys gathered his little girl into his arms. “It doesn’t matter. You’re back. You’re back.” He tightened his arms. “I’ve missed you so much.”
  160. 160. “Breathing becoming an issue…” Rhys loosened his embrace. “Sorry. I’ve just missed you so much, pumpkin.” “How long was I dead?” Rose wanted to know.
  161. 161. “Too long,” Rhys answered. That wasn’t good enough for Rose. “How long?” Her voice was harder than before. “Three years,” Rhys answered.
  162. 162. “Three years! Oh my plumbbob! That means Joss is an adult now. Where’s the phone? I’ve got to get to college right away!” “Pumpkin, about Joss-” Rhys started but was cut off by a frantic teenager. “Oh no! I didn’t think to ask! Is Joss okay? And Lily? And Kor? Mom didn’t kill them too did she?” “No. No, that woman didn’t kill them.” “Then what happened?! Joss is okay, right?” “Joss is fine.” “Then what is it, Daddy.”
  163. 163. “He’s in love with someone else.” Rose took a step back, stricken. “Who?” she asked in a small voice. “Not Elizabeth. You wouldn’t be acting this way if it were Elizabeth.” “It’s not Elizabeth. It’s worse. He’s in love with a simself. Marina. My simself.” “But why would she do this? She knows how I feel about him.” “I don’t know, pumpkin, but I intend to find out.” ~*~
  164. 164. ~*~ Hi… so I’ve been sitting on this update for a while. Mostly because this is like super transitional chapter and I got distracted by Otakon and writing Hunger Games fanfic. Seriously, Otakon eats my soul and Hunger Games is awesome. So this took a back seat. It isn’t dead. It’s just on a back burner. This chapter also started out at a whopping 300 slides. 50 slides got edited down before my brain said NOPE after captioning 34 slides! The remaining 70 got cut when I said “Fuck it! Only the important stuff!” So this is what you get. The important stuff. I’m also running into hood explosion issues. I don’t want to rebuild, but it does mean that I need to be careful. Right now I am leaning toward doing a massive run toward the finish and just making back ups at key points and going back and filming later after I actually finish the challenge. So what that means is that spares are going to get shoved in houses and ignored. Only the relevant houses will get played (aka the main house) and the rest will just get aged along as I need them. Sorry to those who wanted to see the other houses, the hood is too on the edge to overload them.
  165. 165. Thanks go out to everyone who let me use their sims and simselves and to Peasant007, DocSupremeNerd, and RoseFyre for being sounding boards and unfortunately being horribly spoiled. So thanks for sticking it out with me. I hopefully won’t take another year hiatus. But until next time, happy simming!