Welcome to Chapter 2.1 of The Gestalt Legacy. In the last chapter, the boys of the 2nd generation grew up, dealt with a fe...
Like many college students, Nicholas, Aaron, Samuel, and Tessa’s first year of college went by in a blur. For Samuel and T...
Though some could say that the degree to which they explored their new freedoms was a bit extreme.<br />“What the hell, ma...
When he wasn’t being scarred for life at the hands of his all-too-outgoing brother, Nicholas dedicated himself to learning...
Aaron also earned high marks in his Art classes relatively early, though his efforts were more personal in nature. Along w...
Though he was by no means as dedicated to the pursuit of romance and his brothers, Nicholas managed to attract his share o...
Well this is new…<br />
“Aaron! I hope its ok if Paige and I share your bed tonight, our beds are sooo uncomfortable, and we really need a good ni...
Despite the rather large number of dormies that literally threw themselves at him, Aaron found himself spending most of hi...
“I’m not that type of student either, you know. And I can’t help it if the hottest girl in school happens to be a professo...
“Why is that?” Aaron asked as he fed Gretchen a bit of his shrimp.<br />After she finished chewing, Gretchen continued. “I...
As his younger brother got to know his date, Nicholas took his time deciding which type of coffee to buy on the floor abov...
“Stupid machine! All I want to do is go on the internet, is that so hard? How is it that such unreliable garbage has sudde...
The strange girl slumped in her seat, and Nicholas couldn’t help but notice that the computer was not plugged in.<br />
“Um, sorry for butting in, but I think I can help…”<br />In an instant, the girl shot up in her chair with a near snarl on...
“Boy? You know, you don’t really look any older than I am.”<br />The girl was shocked. Very rarely did she find any human ...
“Let me just check something…one sec.” Nicholas kneeled down, and confirmed that the computer had indeed been unplugged. “...
“Gvaudoin? That’s a pretty uncommon name, isn’t it? Hmm…is it working yet?”<br />“I believe it is, what’s the term? Loadin...
Nicholas rose to his feet, and moved to leave. “Well it’s been a pleasure meeting you, Gvaudoin, even if I had to be insul...
Nicholas…what an interesting boy.<br />
Sooner than any of them realized, the college freshman found themselves college sophomores. As they celebrated the end of ...
“Elsewhere Island? That harbor town? I don’t know…I mean, I think we could all use a vacation, but is there anything to ac...
“I’m with Samuel. I think a vacation would be fantastic, but why can’t we go somewhere like Twikki Island? I could really ...
“Elsewhere Island might not be sunny, but its beaches aren’t so bad. Plus, I don’t know if we can afford going as far as T...
With a grateful look towards his more practical minded brother, Nicholas rushed off to book their vacation. Hmm…it looks l...
Early next morning (too early in Tessa’s opinion), the group left for the island.<br />
Needless to say, after a long taxi ride, a longer ferry ride, and very few hours of sleep, Nicholas’ decision to book them...
Somehow, the giant, golden statue of an old-timey diver in front of the Elsewhere Island Museum of Marine Biology did not ...
Still miffed about their accommodations, the rest of Nicholas’ group left him in the special care of a particularly overen...
Nicholas’ head jerked up slightly when he noticed the docent had stopped speaking. “Hm? No, I’m good, thanks.”<br />“Well ...
“Tess, you don’t think it was mean to abandon Nicholas and Aaron, do you?”<br />“No way, Nicholas’ probably eating up ever...
Once Nicholas managed to tear himself away from the well-meaning docent, the group decided to meet at the Elsewhere Bowlin...
While Aaron, for whatever reason, lingered at the bar. <br />
As Nicholas tried to decide which brother to join, his thoughts were interrupted by the voice of a pretty local. “Hey, you...
“Really? I don’t know why anyone wouldn’t want to spend time with you. Er, that’s not what I meant…” Nicholas blanched. <b...
Though Ashley accepted Nicholas’ offer, the two spent most of their time talking rather than focusing on the game. As they...
“Uh, guys?” Samuel couldn’t help but interrupt. “Were you going to, I don’t know, ever take your turns? It’s ok if you wan...
“We weren’t flirting!” Nicholas seethed, in sharp contrast to his normally friendly demeanor. <br />Hoping to avert a figh...
“Alright, whoever falls first buys dinner!” Ashley challenged as they made their way onto the rink. Though he was overall ...
“So after you’re finished getting your degree at the Institute, are you planning on staying on the Island?” Nicholas asked...
*Oof* “Well this is embarrassing.”<br />
At the sound of her fall, Nicholas quickly made his way over to Ashley. “Here’s hoping I don’t end up on the ground too,” ...
“What a gentleman,” Ashley laughed, as she kissed Nicholas’ cheek.<br />
“Looks like you won the bet, Sam. Intimate contact within 10 minutes of them leaving the building.”<br />
“Hmph. It figures it would take me acting like a teenager to get Nick to make the moves on a pretty girl.”<br />Aaron chec...
“So I guess this means I owe you dinner, right?”<br />“Dinner sounds great, but since I’m the winner, I get to make the ru...
After their first surprisingly eventful day on Elsewhere Island, at least two members of the vacation group were ready to ...
Despite the long day, Nicholas found himself more preoccupied with Ashley than sleep. This is crazy, I don’t even know thi...
After what seemed like hours (but was really only 15 minutes), Nicholas sensed a presence beside him. “Can’t sleep either,...
For the first few minutes neither brother spoke, enjoying the relaxing effect of the steam. Uncharacteristically, Aaron de...
“Heather Davis?” Aaron scoffed. “I hate to break it to you Nick, but I doubt that girl’s anxiously awaiting your return, i...
“Do you…is it wrong to be jealous of your own brother’s success?”<br />“Who, Samuel? Because of what, Tessa? She’s a great...
“Of course I don’t like the high-maintenance princess that makes sure to monopolize all of my brother’s time.”<br />Aaron’...
Though the weekend may have gotten off to a rocky start for some, a day spent at the beach proved to lift everyone’s sprit...
“And I’m good over here, the view’s great!”<br />
A few minutes after five, Ashley raced onto the beach. “I’m so sorry I’m late! Some freshman made a mess of the lab I’m as...
“No, not at all,” Nicholas assured her as he rose to his feet. “So, where are we headed?”<br />
“You’ll see,” Ashley teased in a flirtatious voice. “Are you sure you want to leave now? We can always hang out here if yo...
“He’s sure!” the twins answered in unison. Ashley laughed as she and Nicholas walked towards the street, while Nicholas mu...
“I hope the Fish Head Hotel restaurant meets with your approval. It’s the nicest place in town, or at least I think so.”<b...
“It’s great! When I first came up with the idea to visit Elsewhere, I really had my heart set on staying here actually—but...
Nicholas and Ashley spent most of the day (and eventually night) discussing their lives and interests. Though neither of t...
As polite as the staff of the Fish Head Hotel were, once 20 minutes had passed after the restaurant usually closed, the ho...
“Right.”<br />
On their final night in Elsewhere Island, Nicholas and the rest happened upon a secluded beach. As soon as they got a fire...
“Actually, I think that’s a great idea. I bet I could find us a place at a decent price, but it’s up to you. Having our ow...
“I think that’s a great idea, Tess!” Samuel enthusiastically agreed, not noticing the annoyed look that crossed his twin’s...
Around 4am, the group said goodbye to Elsewhere Island and headed back to school. Around the same time, in a decidedly mor...
“It’s been a week, and we’ve yet to see results on the Nos matter,” Jon Tricou coolly informed his coterie.* “And, we’ve y...
KvornanTricou laughed as he looked to his right. “Wasn’t tracking the Nos Bitch your problem Kiernan?”<br />Keirnan lounge...
This is why I hate these stupid meetingsFricorith raged to himself. He and his big sister Gvuadoin were the youngest of th...
“Of course, mistress. My sources tell me that local Mages have indeed made contact with Ms. Gestalt and her family, which ...
After a long spiel about profit margins and other mostly indecipherable concepts, Jon prepared to threaten his subordinate...
“Jennail and Kiernan will attend to the wayward children, or they will be sent to their rooms with no supper or toys to ke...
“And beloved Kvornan will find a way to make himself useful, or we won’t be allowed to go out and play, understood?”<br />...
“Mother is pleased with the rest of you, and she hopes you will continue to watch over our lesser cousins.”<br />“Yes, mot...
Though he resisted the urge to openly contradict his wife’s demands, Jon winced inwardly at the clouded mind Jennicor no l...
Fortunately, not everyone faced such an insurmountable challenge. Though it took some time, Nicholas eventually managed to...
His soon-to-be roommates disagreed.<br />“Dude, pink and yellow walls? And isn’t that outdoor stove just a barrel?” -  Sam...
“Guys, it’s really not so bad. We’ve got all the amenities, a nice courtyard, we’ve each got separate rooms, everything’s ...
“How about the pink and yellow walls? That’s not to like!”<br />“I won’t be able to sleep here without imagining a group o...
Nicholas stepped backwards into the courtyard as he addressed Samuel and Tessa. “I know it looks a little…unconventional, ...
Nicholas assured both of his brothers that they would have ample room to do whatever it is they wanted to do, though Tessa...
“At least the toilet is inside, right?” Nicholas yelled back, trying and failing to laugh at Tessa’s outrage.<br />“So not...
For most of sophomore year, life proceeded as it does for most college students. <br />
One of the most attractive aspects of their house, at least in Nicholas’ eyes, was the already plotted garden. Once spring...
When he wasn’t working on his garden, Nicholas made sure to keep in touch with Ashley, racking up impressive phone bills i...
“Hey Nick, we’re all set to head over to FM…”<br />“Oh, ok. Thanks Kim…what? No, Kim’s a guy! I swear, a group of us are g...
When Tessa wasn’t complaining, and Samuel wasn’t entertaining guests, the couple made ample use of their newly private bed...
In addition to more public spaces.<br />“Gretchen, I wanted you to know that our last date was…just a sec.” Aaron covered ...
While Aaron and Nicholas usually managed to complete the entirety of their schoolwork for the semester within a few days, ...
Surprisingly, Aaron was the most concerned with increasing the status of NagardAnnyaVar House. While he preferred to let S...
“I guess if you’re sure…Welcome to NagardAnnyaVar, Kim.”<br />“Hey, are you finally joining the house?” Samuel asked from ...
“You know, playing darts isn’t going to help us pass any tests,” Tessa teased.<br />“Just a few more rounds and I’ll…*coug...
“Honey?” Tessa rushed over to Samuel’s side. “Honey, are you ok? What’s wrong?” she panicked. Tessa knew that Samuel had s...
“Oh my God, Samuel!” Tessa yelled for help, though unbeknownst to her, Aaron and Nicholas had left minutes beforehand. “I ...
Eventually, Samuel’s coughing abated. “Ugh…that sucked,” he moaned as he clutched his head.<br />As she watched her boyfri...
“Yeah, I’m good,” Samuel assured Tessa through heavy eyes. “I’m just gonna go lie down for a while.”<br />
Tessa felt a wave of relief wash over her. “As long as you’re sure you’re ok,” she smiled through a thin veneer of tears.<...
“Hey Tess?” Samuel called once he finished changing.<br />“Hmm? What is it honey?”<br />“There’s something I’ve been meani...
Samuel shyly caressed Tessa’s face as she looked on with a degree of confusion. “Samuel? Since when are you so lost for wo...
“Will you marry me?”<br />
“It took you long enough, you jerk!” Tessa cried as she fell into Samuel’s arms. “Yes, yes, of course I’ll marry you!” Bef...
And that’s it for Chapter 2.1! I know it’s a little abrupt, but my original chapter was about 2x as long, so I figured her...
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The Gestalt Legacy 2.1

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Chapter 2.1 of The Gestalt Legacy

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The Gestalt Legacy 2.1

  1. 1.
  2. 2. Welcome to Chapter 2.1 of The Gestalt Legacy. In the last chapter, the boys of the 2nd generation grew up, dealt with a few run-ins with some evil characters, and managed to find there way to college! I recommend reading the previous chapters in order to understand all of what’s going on!<br />Also, I do use some colorful language in a few slides, so reader beware :P<br />
  3. 3. Like many college students, Nicholas, Aaron, Samuel, and Tessa’s first year of college went by in a blur. For Samuel and Tessa, college was less of an important academic experience and more of an opportunity to spend time together without the threat of parental interference.<br />
  4. 4. Though some could say that the degree to which they explored their new freedoms was a bit extreme.<br />“What the hell, man! I came in here to play some chess, not to see my little brother and his girlfriend getting it on!”<br />“Oh, come on Nick. Aaron’s the only one in the entire dorm who managed to score a double bed, so what are we supposed to do?” Samuel joked as Tessa rushed to cover herself up.<br />
  5. 5. When he wasn’t being scarred for life at the hands of his all-too-outgoing brother, Nicholas dedicated himself to learning everything there was to know about Journalism. So much so that he proceeded to earn an A+ for the first semester within a day of arriving.<br />
  6. 6. Aaron also earned high marks in his Art classes relatively early, though his efforts were more personal in nature. Along with several of his dorm mates, Aaron found himself very attracted to a young photography professor, Gretchen Wood.<br />
  7. 7. Though he was by no means as dedicated to the pursuit of romance and his brothers, Nicholas managed to attract his share of attention as well. Unfortunately for him, this sort of attention wasn’t exactly “discriminate.”<br />
  8. 8. Well this is new…<br />
  9. 9. “Aaron! I hope its ok if Paige and I share your bed tonight, our beds are sooo uncomfortable, and we really need a good night’s sleep before midterms…” Rebecca Davis grinned. <br />
  10. 10. Despite the rather large number of dormies that literally threw themselves at him, Aaron found himself spending most of his time with Gretchen.<br />“I hope you aren’t seeing me just to get a better grade Aaron,” Gretchen teased with a wry smile. “I may not be much older than you are, but I’m definitely not that kind of professor.”<br />
  11. 11. “I’m not that type of student either, you know. And I can’t help it if the hottest girl in school happens to be a professor,” Aaron retorted, matching his date’s grin. “Seriously though, you aren’t going to get in trouble for dating a student, right?”<br />Gretchen hesitated, considering Aaron’s question. “Honestly, I don’t think so. I teach in the same department as your major, but as long as I’m not actually handing out your grades, we should be fine. Besides, I doubt I’m going to stay in academia for long.”<br />
  12. 12. “Why is that?” Aaron asked as he fed Gretchen a bit of his shrimp.<br />After she finished chewing, Gretchen continued. “I decided to take up an associate professorship at ALT because I love photography, but I wish I had more time to devote to actually taking pictures, you know? Plus…ah, nevermind. It’s dumb.”<br />“No, please go on.”<br />“Well…I’ve always loved the fashion business, and I’ve done a little modeling in the past. I thought I might go back to that at some point.” <br />
  13. 13. As his younger brother got to know his date, Nicholas took his time deciding which type of coffee to buy on the floor above him. “…so what exactly is the difference between a latte and a mocha breve?”<br />The barista sighed. “A latte is an espresso wi—”<br />“ARGH!!” <br />
  14. 14. “Stupid machine! All I want to do is go on the internet, is that so hard? How is it that such unreliable garbage has suddenly become so essential anyway?”<br />
  15. 15. The strange girl slumped in her seat, and Nicholas couldn’t help but notice that the computer was not plugged in.<br />
  16. 16. “Um, sorry for butting in, but I think I can help…”<br />In an instant, the girl shot up in her chair with a near snarl on her face. “I don’t need your help, boy!”<br />
  17. 17. “Boy? You know, you don’t really look any older than I am.”<br />The girl was shocked. Very rarely did she find any human to possess the willpower to stay standing after she tried to scare them away, but here was a boy who was seemingly untouched by her standoffishness. “I’m joking, of course,” she retreated. “You said you could fix this…thing?”<br />
  18. 18. “Let me just check something…one sec.” Nicholas kneeled down, and confirmed that the computer had indeed been unplugged. “Here, I think that should do it. I’m Nicholas, by the way.”<br />“I’m Gvaudoin,” the girl revealed before she remembered to use an alias.<br />
  19. 19. “Gvaudoin? That’s a pretty uncommon name, isn’t it? Hmm…is it working yet?”<br />“I believe it is, what’s the term? Loading?”<br />“Then you should be able to use it now, hopefully. If it doesn’t decide to crash for no reason, at least.” <br />
  20. 20. Nicholas rose to his feet, and moved to leave. “Well it’s been a pleasure meeting you, Gvaudoin, even if I had to be insulted by a teenage girl. See you around?”<br />“I somewhat doubt that,” she replied, but by then Nicholas had made his way out of earshot. <br />
  21. 21. Nicholas…what an interesting boy.<br />
  22. 22. Sooner than any of them realized, the college freshman found themselves college sophomores. As they celebrated the end of finals week, Nicholas brought up an idea he’d been mulling over since they arrived at Academie Le Tour. <br />“Now that we’re done with the year, what do you guys think about taking a long weekend and heading out to Elsewhere Island?”<br />
  23. 23. “Elsewhere Island? That harbor town? I don’t know…I mean, I think we could all use a vacation, but is there anything to actually do out there?” Samuel wondered.<br />
  24. 24. “I’m with Samuel. I think a vacation would be fantastic, but why can’t we go somewhere like Twikki Island? I could really go for some sunny beaches right about now.”<br />
  25. 25. “Elsewhere Island might not be sunny, but its beaches aren’t so bad. Plus, I don’t know if we can afford going as far as Twikki Island. Honestly, I’m with you, Nick.”<br />Once Aaron voiced his approval, Samuel quickly agreed with Nicholas’ idea—and as soon as Samuel agreed, Tessa wasn’t far behind. <br />
  26. 26. With a grateful look towards his more practical minded brother, Nicholas rushed off to book their vacation. Hmm…it looks like the only hotel on the island is way out of our price range. Camping it is!<br />
  27. 27. Early next morning (too early in Tessa’s opinion), the group left for the island.<br />
  28. 28. Needless to say, after a long taxi ride, a longer ferry ride, and very few hours of sleep, Nicholas’ decision to book them at a local campsite was not popular. After much grumbling, Nicholas managed to convince everyone to go sightseeing.<br />
  29. 29. Somehow, the giant, golden statue of an old-timey diver in front of the Elsewhere Island Museum of Marine Biology did not endear itself to the group.<br />
  30. 30. Still miffed about their accommodations, the rest of Nicholas’ group left him in the special care of a particularly overenthusiastic docent. “Oh wow! It’s always nice to see out-of-towners here in the Museum; we don’t usually get many visitors all the way out here! Oh, but I’m forgetting myself! Ahem– ‘Elsewhere Island has always depended on the sea’s bounty to survive. Since the town was founded in 1802 by Dutch shipping companies, the majority of its residents live and work near the ocean that surrounds us. Though local businesses have thrived since then, Elsewhere was remained dedicated to studying the ocean’s inhabitants! Local species include the tragic clownfish, katanafish, and several species of sharks. Is there a particular species you’d like to hear more about?”<br />
  31. 31. Nicholas’ head jerked up slightly when he noticed the docent had stopped speaking. “Hm? No, I’m good, thanks.”<br />“Well great! Now, if you’ll follow me, I can show you to the local ecology exhibit we just finished!” <br />
  32. 32. “Tess, you don’t think it was mean to abandon Nicholas and Aaron, do you?”<br />“No way, Nicholas’ probably eating up every boring detail in the museum, and Aaron probably took off on his own.”<br />“Yeah, you’re probably right.”<br />
  33. 33. Once Nicholas managed to tear himself away from the well-meaning docent, the group decided to meet at the Elsewhere Bowling Alley/Ice Skating Rink. Tessa and Samuel got straight to bowling…<br />
  34. 34. While Aaron, for whatever reason, lingered at the bar. <br />
  35. 35. As Nicholas tried to decide which brother to join, his thoughts were interrupted by the voice of a pretty local. “Hey, you’re not from around here, are you?” she asked Nicholas with a curious look.<br />“Nope, a group of us are up here from Academie Le Tour. I take it that’s not a particularly common sight on the island, is it?”<br />The girl laughed. “We get our fair share of visitors, but they generally stick to their vacation homes or the hotel. Not too many want to mix with us locals,” she confessed as a bemused smile appeared on her lips.<br />
  36. 36. “Really? I don’t know why anyone wouldn’t want to spend time with you. Er, that’s not what I meant…” Nicholas blanched. <br />The smile on the girl’s face widened. “So you can see why someone wouldn’t want to spend time with me then?” she joked.<br />“No! What I meant was…can we start over? I’m Nicholas.”<br />“It’s nice to meet you, Nicholas. I’m Ashley.”<br />Hoping he hadn’t blown his chances with Ashley, Nicholas quickly asked her to join in on a friendly game of bowling.<br />
  37. 37. Though Ashley accepted Nicholas’ offer, the two spent most of their time talking rather than focusing on the game. As they chatted, Nicholas discovered Ashley was a fellow Knowledge Sim who was currently studying at the Elsewhere Institute of Deep Sea Science, and like him she voraciously pursued gaining knowledge. From Nicholas, Ashley discovered that the two shared a love of sports (especially soccer), an appreciation of both music and science, and a dedication to their studies.<br />
  38. 38. “Uh, guys?” Samuel couldn’t help but interrupt. “Were you going to, I don’t know, ever take your turns? It’s ok if you want to keep flirting, but if you do, Tessa and I are going to go ahead and play.” <br />
  39. 39. “We weren’t flirting!” Nicholas seethed, in sharp contrast to his normally friendly demeanor. <br />Hoping to avert a fight, however harmless, Ashley jumped in. “Nick, ifwe’re interfering in your brother and his girlfriend’s quality bowling time, why don’t we take a few laps on the skating rink outside? I bet a city boy like you couldn’t go five feet before ending up on his ass,” she joked.<br />“Yeah, ok.” Still slightly fuming, Nicholas followed Ashley out the back door of the building, leaving Aaron to take his spot in the game.<br />
  40. 40. “Alright, whoever falls first buys dinner!” Ashley challenged as they made their way onto the rink. Though he was overall a bit shakier on his feet, Nicholas managed to give his partner a run for her money. <br />
  41. 41. “So after you’re finished getting your degree at the Institute, are you planning on staying on the Island?” Nicholas asked Ashley, surprising himself once he realized how concerned he was with the answer.<br />“I hadn’t decided yet, but I hear there’s a pretty impressive oceanography research facility in Riverblossom Hills. I really haven’t deci—woah!”<br />
  42. 42. *Oof* “Well this is embarrassing.”<br />
  43. 43. At the sound of her fall, Nicholas quickly made his way over to Ashley. “Here’s hoping I don’t end up on the ground too,” he chuckled as he unsteadily helped Ashley to her feet. <br />
  44. 44. “What a gentleman,” Ashley laughed, as she kissed Nicholas’ cheek.<br />
  45. 45. “Looks like you won the bet, Sam. Intimate contact within 10 minutes of them leaving the building.”<br />
  46. 46. “Hmph. It figures it would take me acting like a teenager to get Nick to make the moves on a pretty girl.”<br />Aaron checked the window again after he made the spare. “Actually, from what I can tell she kissed him.”<br />“Really?” Samuel was faintly shocked. “Good for her!”<br />
  47. 47. “So I guess this means I owe you dinner, right?”<br />“Dinner sounds great, but since I’m the winner, I get to make the rules: I’ll pay, but you have to decide where to go.”<br />“Well, as long as you’re paying…I’ll tell you what. Meet me at the Southside Beach tomorrow around five—by then I’ll have to have come up with something.”<br />
  48. 48. After their first surprisingly eventful day on Elsewhere Island, at least two members of the vacation group were ready to settle down for the night. “Samuel and I claim this tent to ourselves, so you boys are gonna have to share,” Tessa called over her shoulder.<br />
  49. 49. Despite the long day, Nicholas found himself more preoccupied with Ashley than sleep. This is crazy, I don’t even know this girl…plus I’ve got kind of a thing going with Heather back home. <br />
  50. 50. After what seemed like hours (but was really only 15 minutes), Nicholas sensed a presence beside him. “Can’t sleep either, huh?” he asked his brother.<br />“Not really, but that’s what happens when your big brother expects you to sleep in a tent.”<br />“Ah. You know, this place does have a free sauna, so I didn’t screw up completely. You wanna try it out?”<br />“Why not.”<br />
  51. 51. For the first few minutes neither brother spoke, enjoying the relaxing effect of the steam. Uncharacteristically, Aaron decided to break the silence. “So that Ashley girl seems nice, if you like the brainy type.”<br />“I thought you liked every type,” Nicholas teased.<br />“Do I now?” Aaron laughed. “You know, just because a guy enjoys some pleasant company now and then doesn’t mean they’re indiscriminate.”<br />“Ashley is nice though,” Nicholas confessed. “But I’d feel bad if I made Heather think I was leading her on.”<br />
  52. 52. “Heather Davis?” Aaron scoffed. “I hate to break it to you Nick, but I doubt that girl’s anxiously awaiting your return, if you get my meaning.”<br />“Seriously? Well damn, that’s a weight off my shoulders.”<br />“Yeah…” Aaron paused. “Listen, if I ask you something, do you swear not to…I don’t know, think less of me?”<br />Aaron had always been the most serious of his brothers, but the grave tone of his voice surprised even Nicholas. “Yeah man, for sure.”<br />
  53. 53. “Do you…is it wrong to be jealous of your own brother’s success?”<br />“Who, Samuel? Because of what, Tessa? She’s a great girl and all (maybe a little high-strung, I guess) but you’ve always been the most popular of all three of us, so once you decide to settle down I doubt you’ll have trouble finding someone.”<br />“No, it’s not that. It’s just…you say I’ve always been popular, but I have no idea why. I don’t know how to deal with people, but that somehow translates to ‘cool’ or whatever, so people throw themselves at me. But you seem to make honest connections with people, and Sam always seems to do fine despite his illness. Just look at Tessa,” Aaron ended with a derisive gesture.<br />“You don’t like Tessa?”<br />
  54. 54. “Of course I don’t like the high-maintenance princess that makes sure to monopolize all of my brother’s time.”<br />Aaron’s description of the girl they’d all lived with for the past year surprised Nicholas. Is she really that bad, he wondered to himself. Where have I been? Pushing thoughts of Tessa out of his mind, Nicholas turned to his brother. “Aaron, until today the only girl who showed any interest in me since we left home was apparently interested in a whole lot of other people too—a fact I was too wrapped up in myself to even notice. Both of us tend to think way too much about stuff that isn’t all that important, so here’s some advice I’m gonna try and follow too: don’t focus on whether or not things are going right, just do whatever feels right.<br />“I’ll think about it.” Aaron smiled as he clapped Nicholas’ shoulder and made his way back to the tent. After a few moments of solitary reflection, Nicholas joined him.<br />
  55. 55. Though the weekend may have gotten off to a rocky start for some, a day spent at the beach proved to lift everyone’s sprits. <br />“Guys, are you sure you don’t want to try and get some sun? We might as well, seeing as it’s only going to get darker once we get back to school,” Aaron called across the beach.<br />“I’m gonna head off once Ashley gets here, or else I’d definitely take you up on your offer.”<br />
  56. 56. “And I’m good over here, the view’s great!”<br />
  57. 57. A few minutes after five, Ashley raced onto the beach. “I’m so sorry I’m late! Some freshman made a mess of the lab I’m assigned to oversee, so I had to stay late to clean up. You’re not mad, are you?”<br />
  58. 58. “No, not at all,” Nicholas assured her as he rose to his feet. “So, where are we headed?”<br />
  59. 59. “You’ll see,” Ashley teased in a flirtatious voice. “Are you sure you want to leave now? We can always hang out here if you want to spend more time with your family.”<br />
  60. 60. “He’s sure!” the twins answered in unison. Ashley laughed as she and Nicholas walked towards the street, while Nicholas muttered something about “idiot brothers” under his breath.<br />
  61. 61. “I hope the Fish Head Hotel restaurant meets with your approval. It’s the nicest place in town, or at least I think so.”<br />
  62. 62. “It’s great! When I first came up with the idea to visit Elsewhere, I really had my heart set on staying here actually—but we got stuck camping, I’m afraid.”<br />“Ouch! I guess I made the right choice then,” Ashley beamed.<br />
  63. 63. Nicholas and Ashley spent most of the day (and eventually night) discussing their lives and interests. Though neither of them were prone to “love at first sight”-esque relationships, as the night went on the couple grew closer and closer. <br />
  64. 64. As polite as the staff of the Fish Head Hotel were, once 20 minutes had passed after the restaurant usually closed, the host graciously requested that Nicholas and Ashley continue their conversation outside.<br />“I want you to know that I’m not one of those girls who latches on to any cute guy who happens to roll into town, ok? I really do like you, but I know you live so far away…”<br />“I really like you too, Ashley. And yeah, I’m not from around here, but that doesn’t mean we can’t still keep in touch—and we can always take a long weekend and visit each other, right?”<br />
  65. 65. “Right.”<br />
  66. 66. On their final night in Elsewhere Island, Nicholas and the rest happened upon a secluded beach. As soon as they got a fire going, the group got to talking about their plans for the next year.<br />“I don’t know about you guys,” Tessa asserted, “but I for one am totally sick of the dorms. What do you think about starting our own Greek House?”<br />“Can we afford renting a house?” Aaron wondered. “I know we all did pretty well with grants and scholarships, but that’s a pretty big step.”<br />
  67. 67. “Actually, I think that’s a great idea. I bet I could find us a place at a decent price, but it’s up to you. Having our own place would mean we’d be responsible for food, plus we’d all need to pitch in to keep the place looking relatively clean at least.”<br />
  68. 68. “I think that’s a great idea, Tess!” Samuel enthusiastically agreed, not noticing the annoyed look that crossed his twin’s face. “But I’m only up for it if Aaron wants to go too.”<br />“Seriously?” Aaron was genuinely shocked Samuel valued his opinion more than Tessa’s in this instance. “I guess if Nick can find us an affordable place, why not?”<br />“Even if it cuts off your access to all those nubile young dormies?” Samuel jokingly leered.<br />“Yeah, haha, very funny…”<br />
  69. 69. Around 4am, the group said goodbye to Elsewhere Island and headed back to school. Around the same time, in a decidedly more upscale neighborhood, another group began some decidedly unpleasant business.<br />
  70. 70. “It’s been a week, and we’ve yet to see results on the Nos matter,” Jon Tricou coolly informed his coterie.* “And, we’ve yet to reach a resolution concerning Gestalt either. Fortunately, the weres have kept a low profile for whatever reason, but that doesn’t make up for your lack of initiative. Quite frankly, I’m disappointed in all of you.”<br />*Coterie = The name vampires give a formal group<br />
  71. 71. KvornanTricou laughed as he looked to his right. “Wasn’t tracking the Nos Bitch your problem Kiernan?”<br />Keirnan lounged backwards and failed to stifle a yawn. “It was, my dear brother. But when all one sees, day in and day out, is their close relations become fat and lazy on the blood of innocents…what can I say? It saps my motivation.”<br />Jennail turned to her twin. “Darling, I’d have thought you’d have realized ages ago that Kvornan is the last of us worthy of looking to for inspiration.”<br />“Mope if you must, you pathetic excuses for vampires, but don’t expect anyone else to waste eternity when there’s fun to be had.”<br />
  72. 72. This is why I hate these stupid meetingsFricorith raged to himself. He and his big sister Gvuadoin were the youngest of the Tricous, but more often than not it was their elders that insisted on bickering when there was actual work to be done. <br />Though she didn’t share Fricorith’s disdain for her family, Nylissit too wished to stop wasting time. “While we may not have moved forward on Nos’ rogue coterie, I do have news on Amarante Gestalt. Clementine, if you would?”<br />
  73. 73. “Of course, mistress. My sources tell me that local Mages have indeed made contact with Ms. Gestalt and her family, which proves Lady Jennicor’s suspicions correct. Currently, Amarante’s three sons are attending school at Academie Le Tour, though none of them have shown signs of any supernatural ability.”<br />Once Nylissit’s ghoul* had finished, Jon looked to his eldest servant. “Brent, how is business?”<br />*Ghoul = A human enslaved, willingly or not, to a vampire<br />
  74. 74. After a long spiel about profit margins and other mostly indecipherable concepts, Jon prepared to threaten his subordinates into submission. However, before he could get one word out, his wife Jennicor jumped in. “You monsters have made Mother and Father very upset, and we are not ones to suffer gladly...”<br />
  75. 75. “Jennail and Kiernan will attend to the wayward children, or they will be sent to their rooms with no supper or toys to keep them company!” <br />
  76. 76. “And beloved Kvornan will find a way to make himself useful, or we won’t be allowed to go out and play, understood?”<br />“Perfectly, mother.”<br />
  77. 77. “Mother is pleased with the rest of you, and she hopes you will continue to watch over our lesser cousins.”<br />“Yes, mother,” Gvaudoinand the rest replied. While the rest of her coterie gradually disbanded for the night, Gvaudoin considered the ghoul’s words carefully. I wonder…could that boy be related to the queer human? Most intriguing. <br />
  78. 78. Though he resisted the urge to openly contradict his wife’s demands, Jon winced inwardly at the clouded mind Jennicor no longer had the ability to hide. For more than 50 years, vampires held dominance over every other supernatural group in the city—due in no small part to Jon’s firm and steady hand. But things seem to be going so wrong now, Jon regretted. Weres are all well and good, but we cannot afford to fight them, our own kind, and the Mages at the same time. The question is, to whom do we extend the olive branch?<br />
  79. 79. Fortunately, not everyone faced such an insurmountable challenge. Though it took some time, Nicholas eventually managed to find a house that was both affordable and (in his view) charming. <br />
  80. 80. His soon-to-be roommates disagreed.<br />“Dude, pink and yellow walls? And isn’t that outdoor stove just a barrel?” - Samuel<br />“Are you out of your mind? It took you this long to find us a bunch of multi-colored shacks? Are you sure this isn’t just a temporarily abandoned shantytown?” – Tessa<br />“……” - Aaron<br />
  81. 81. “Guys, it’s really not so bad. We’ve got all the amenities, a nice courtyard, we’ve each got separate rooms, everything’s nice and open…what’s not to like?”<br />
  82. 82. “How about the pink and yellow walls? That’s not to like!”<br />“I won’t be able to sleep here without imagining a group of vagrants coming to reclaim their turf.”<br />“You’re both overreacting.” Aaron paused as he looked out across their new home. “It’s not perfect, but real estate is insane around here. So get over it and trust Nicholas, because there’s no point in whining.”<br />
  83. 83. Nicholas stepped backwards into the courtyard as he addressed Samuel and Tessa. “I know it looks a little…unconventional, but we really have everything we need here. Plus, the Music Hall is right across the street, and there’s a killer bookstore next door.” Nicholas put on what he hoped was a convincing grin. “Just give it a try, ok?”<br />“Yeah, you’re right,” Samuel admitted while Tessa gave a curt nod. “Me and Tess get a double bed though, right?” <br />
  84. 84. Nicholas assured both of his brothers that they would have ample room to do whatever it is they wanted to do, though Tessa was less than pleased when she discovered the “bathroom.”<br />“There is no way I’m bathing outside!”<br />
  85. 85. “At least the toilet is inside, right?” Nicholas yelled back, trying and failing to laugh at Tessa’s outrage.<br />“So not good enough!”<br />
  86. 86. For most of sophomore year, life proceeded as it does for most college students. <br />
  87. 87. One of the most attractive aspects of their house, at least in Nicholas’ eyes, was the already plotted garden. Once spring came around, Nicholas was often found tending his precious tomatoes—a pastime his housemates took much less of an interest in.<br />“Hey Aaron, you know, if you wanted to help there’s plenty of sprouts that still need to be weeded. That is, if you actually wanted to help me grow the food we’re all going to eat eventually.”<br />“…uh huh.”<br />
  88. 88. When he wasn’t working on his garden, Nicholas made sure to keep in touch with Ashley, racking up impressive phone bills in the process.<br />“…So then this guy in a cow costume, I’m assuming he’s a mascot from another school or something, shows up…yeah, it’s crazy, I know. But then our mascot straight up attacks him, and Aaron and I had no idea what was going on…”<br />
  89. 89. “Hey Nick, we’re all set to head over to FM…”<br />“Oh, ok. Thanks Kim…what? No, Kim’s a guy! I swear, a group of us are going downtown for karaoke, that’s it! You…oh, haha. Very funny. I’ll talk to you later, Ash.”<br />
  90. 90. When Tessa wasn’t complaining, and Samuel wasn’t entertaining guests, the couple made ample use of their newly private bedroom and double bed.<br />
  91. 91. In addition to more public spaces.<br />“Gretchen, I wanted you to know that our last date was…just a sec.” Aaron covered the mouthpiece of the phone as he spotted his brother’s reflection in the window. “Seriously? You guys have a room, use it!”<br />“Mmph, mmm, hehehe.”<br />“Gretchen, can I call you back?”<br />
  92. 92. While Aaron and Nicholas usually managed to complete the entirety of their schoolwork for the semester within a few days, when Samuel and Tessa weren’t together (so to speak), their relative lack of scholastic ability forced them to spend an inordinate time on maintaining their grades.<br />
  93. 93. Surprisingly, Aaron was the most concerned with increasing the status of NagardAnnyaVar House. While he preferred to let Samuel maintain a sizable friend count, when he wasn’t spending time with Professor Gretchen (or any number of other men and women), Aaron carefully observed who would make an adequate addition to the house.<br />“Kim, if I were to invite you to pledge, it would be your responsibility to maintain the house and keep up our Greek Status. Are you up for that?”<br />“Totally! I already spend so much time here as it is, I might as well make it official and join, right?”<br />
  94. 94. “I guess if you’re sure…Welcome to NagardAnnyaVar, Kim.”<br />“Hey, are you finally joining the house?” Samuel asked from the sink. “It’s good to have you, man!”<br />“Yup, wonderful” Tessa impatiently agreed. “Samuel, are you almost done? We need to get started on studying for midterms, like yesterday.”<br />As Aaron rolled his eyes behind Tessa’s back, Kim gave a silent laugh and the two headed over to the dinner table.<br />
  95. 95. “You know, playing darts isn’t going to help us pass any tests,” Tessa teased.<br />“Just a few more rounds and I’ll…*cough* Just a sec--*cough* *cough*”<br />
  96. 96. “Honey?” Tessa rushed over to Samuel’s side. “Honey, are you ok? What’s wrong?” she panicked. Tessa knew that Samuel had some sort of asthma-like disease, though it usually manifested in a far less intense manner.<br />Samuel tried to tell Tessa to get one of his brothers, but due to the latest resurgence of his “condition,” he could only make unintelligible sounds.<br />
  97. 97. “Oh my God, Samuel!” Tessa yelled for help, though unbeknownst to her, Aaron and Nicholas had left minutes beforehand. “I don’t know what to do!” she cried, as Samuel fell to his knees.<br />
  98. 98. Eventually, Samuel’s coughing abated. “Ugh…that sucked,” he moaned as he clutched his head.<br />As she watched her boyfriend shakily rise to his feet, Tessa felt her heart slowly begin to settle down. “Samuel?” she asked in a wavering voice. “Are you ok, is there something I can do?” <br />
  99. 99. “Yeah, I’m good,” Samuel assured Tessa through heavy eyes. “I’m just gonna go lie down for a while.”<br />
  100. 100. Tessa felt a wave of relief wash over her. “As long as you’re sure you’re ok,” she smiled through a thin veneer of tears.<br />Once he could finally breathe a little easier, Samuel looked into Tessa’s eyes. “As long as you’re around, how could I not be?”<br />Tessa wordlessly embraced her boyfriend as the two made their way to bed.<br />
  101. 101. “Hey Tess?” Samuel called once he finished changing.<br />“Hmm? What is it honey?”<br />“There’s something I’ve been meaning to ask, but I’m not really sure how…”<br />
  102. 102. Samuel shyly caressed Tessa’s face as she looked on with a degree of confusion. “Samuel? Since when are you so lost for words?” she teased.<br />A faint blush appeared on Samuel’s cheeks as he tried to continue. “Tessa, you’re the only girl I’ve ever loved, you know that. And, well, for a second there I thought I might never see you again, and…What I’m trying to ask is…” <br />
  103. 103. “Will you marry me?”<br />
  104. 104. “It took you long enough, you jerk!” Tessa cried as she fell into Samuel’s arms. “Yes, yes, of course I’ll marry you!” Before she could say anything more, Samuel silenced Tessa with a kiss—and after that, let’s just say neither had much to say.<br />To Be Continued!<br />
  105. 105. And that’s it for Chapter 2.1! I know it’s a little abrupt, but my original chapter was about 2x as long, so I figured here was as good of a time as any to take a break. I’m kinda struggling with writing the boys at college, so if anyone has any comments/criticisms, please let me know at my Boolprop thread or on my Livejournal!<br />I wanted to make sure to mention that Elsewhere Island is my poor attempt at converting Plasticbox’s phenomenal Elsewhere neighborhood into a vacation area (http://www.modthesims.info/download.php?t=319898), and the AnnyaNagardVar house is from Parsimonious: (http://www.parsimonious.org/houses2/pages/home_mini/sirvibrant_weekend_hideout.shtml)<br />Thanks Again!<br />

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