Already in Progress, Chapter 44: Big Huge Meanie


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Already in Progress, Chapter 44: Big Huge Meanie

  1. 1. Hello, everyone! Welcome back to Already in Progress! It’s theonly story that starts in the middle! And it’s got a picture of apenguin trying to reach fish on the cover!I have to apologize for my less-than-stellar update record oflate. I was moving. When I finished moving, it wasThanksgiving – time to travel. When I got back, Boolprop wasmoving! But now that everyone’s moved and the dust is mostlysettling at the new forum, I decided to be sure and finish up achapter for you.I hope you remember what happened last time, because I amterrible at recaps. And anyway, our story is always Already inProgress…
  2. 2. I thought the flu epidemic was over at the Couderc-Littledragonhouse, but apparently I thought wrong. A visit from theexterminator took care of the original source of the infection,but unfortunately did nothing to stop the person-to-persontransmission. There’s a pregnant woman in the house, and shecannot get sick under any circumstances.
  3. 3. Desperate times call for desperate measures, and the householdwent into Quarantine Lockdown. All infected Sims were lockedin a room containing all the necessities of life, and were kept inthe room until I got the popup announcing that they werehealthy again. Then, and only then, was the door unlocked.In retrospect, they might have healed faster if I had put sinks inthe room to dispose of the dishes instead of trashcans. Anne inparticular kept trying to take the trash out and then dropping itinto a big smelly roach-attracting pile on the floor when itturned out the door was – surprise, surprise! – locked.
  4. 4. Lucy recovered in world-record time, and neither Sally norTroy took sick. Since Sally was usually either asleep or peeing,Lucy and Troy had a lot of time together.LUCY: Listen, you. What do you think you’re going to doabout my daughter and her baby?TROY: Er, I was thinking that I can’t handle the midnightfeedings, but if Sally pumps, I’ll take the day shift so she cansleep. (notices Lucy’s face) That wasn’t what you were askingabout, was it?LUCY: What are you going to do about giving the baby aname?TROY: I’ve always liked Imani, but Sally says she wants toname the baby after me if it’s a girl and after her if it’s a boy –That wasn’t what you were asking about either, was it?
  5. 5. LUCY: What are you going to do about a last name?TROY: Oh, well, the baby will be a Langerak, like me. (checksfor Lucy’s reaction) Er, won’t it?LUCY (satisfied): I’m so glad we agree! I knew you’d do theright thing. (hugs Troy, not entirely gently) Eventually. Withguidance.TROY (as Lucy walks away): Oooookay. What was that allabout?
  6. 6. TROY: Sally, there’s something I want to ask you…SALLY (distressed): Oh no. You’ve been talking to my mother,haven’t you?TROY (uncertainly): Ye-es. But I thought you’d be happy!SALLY: I would be! It’s just – look, you don’t have to doanything you don’t want to. I love you, and I’m happy to keepon as we are if you’d prefer. We can get our own place if youdon’t want Mom to keep nagging you about “making an honestwoman of me.”TROY (as light dawns): Ohhhhh, is that what she was going onabout?SALLY: …You’re not asking because Mom strong-armed youinto it?TROY: No. I’m asking because I love you and I want to bewith you.
  7. 7. SALLY: Then yes! Yes! Yes! (sniffles, then throws herself atTroy and begins covering his face with kisses)TROY: (staggers) Oooof! Warn me next time you want to dothat, okay? It – (kisses Sally back as she lands a kiss on hismouth) I mean, your center of – (again) Of gravity isn’t – (andagain) Isn’t – (and again) Oh, system crash with it! (gives uptalking in favor of kissing)
  8. 8. Sally Couderc is now… well, Sally Couderc, actually, since shedidn’t want to change her name. But she’s a married woman,and can now call herself “Mrs. Couderc” if she wants to.Sally and Troy have agreed that the baby will be a Langerak.
  9. 9. And speaking of the baby, we’re about to find out what it is!Sally would have to give birth in the bathroom. (sarcastically)It’s not like there are any other rooms in the house or anything.SALLY: No, it’s huff puff written: “ImportantLifeEvent” ugh“ImportantLifeEv- Even-” aaaaaaugh “equals” owwwwww“eq- eq- equals GoTo – ” AAAAAAAAAAAAA!TROYYYYYY!
  10. 10. But it was all worthwhile in the end. Meet Tamara Langerak!In the Jewish naming tradition to “name after” someone meansthat you start the child’s name with the same letter, and I’vealways liked that tradition better than the one in which you justgive the child the exact same name as whoever they’re namedafter. So since Troy begins with a T, and so does Tamara,Tamara actually is named after Troy. Traditionally, it’s badluck to name the child after someone living, but I’m notworried.
  11. 11. Over at the Littledragon-Miller house, Sam has been busyworking out. Apparently she’s been consuming more caloriesthan she’s been burning lately.
  12. 12. Cathrynne has taken up the piano, just like her mother.Honestly, I see very little of Dante in her except for hertendency to ask people to dance with her. (I find that Nicechildren ask to dance with older relatives more than Meanones.) Perhaps once she becomes a Teen it will be moreobvious.
  13. 13. Being Elders with a very Comfortable bed, Harkon and Nirelare awake for large chunks of the night. This means that theyget to go on lots of late-night (or very early-morning) dates tothe park or the diner.SERVER: Okay, that’s one bowl of chili and one – Yow! I’ll,uh… I’ll just come back with the food in a minute, shall I?
  14. 14. Of course, this is generally a very affectionate family.
  15. 15. Very affectionate indeed.
  16. 16. Adam is not about to blithely take advantage of Amy’snaturally affectionate tendencies, however.ADAM: Sir, I wanted to talk to you about your daughter.HARKON: Do you want to move in?ADAM: Wow, that’s direct. Um, I’d like to be with Amy, and Idon’t really have a place to offer –HARKON: You can’t move in. Sorry.ADAM: But it would only be until I can get a job – !HARKON: No, I mean you literally can’t move in. We havefive people and three cats already. Any more would violate cityordinance.
  17. 17. So, in the interest of more space, Amy moved out and tookLatifah the cat with her.
  18. 18. She wasted no time in asking Adam to move in with her. He,being an intelligent man with good taste, agreed.
  19. 19. Adam then wasted no time in showing that he is a good matchfor Amy.See? Neither of them has the sense to come in out of the rain.It occurs to me that Adam and Amy both have repeat names:There’s an Old Adam in Ruth’s, and there have been two Amysin AiP already. If anyone has any suggestions for nicknames,I’m all ears.And speaking of Old Adam…
  20. 20. Leonid is proceeding with his “insurance” plan for Dmitri’sfuture.OLD ADAM: Capital! He will not do for my older daughters,but I think he is of an age to make a match with my youngest,Rose. She is four.LEONID: Is good age difference. Wery suitable.OLD ADAM: I have always thought so.* Truly, I cannot getover how noble his nose is!*Both Old Adam and Leonid are married to women older than themselves.Old Adam comes from Ruth’s (un)Officially Wacky Boolprop Challenge,which you should definitely check out. [/shameless self-promotion]
  21. 21. OLD ADAM: Then we are agreed: when they have bothgraduated University, Dmitri and Rose shall marry. If themarriage does not go through as planned, there will be a heavyforfeit.LEONID: Is deal!(The fathers shake hands, very pleased with themselves)
  22. 22. LEONID: Is wery good deal I made this afternoon, zaika.Arranged marriage with nice girl and built in guarantee. (withsudden worry) Oh dear – we are not specifying who will bepaying heavy forfeit. Is being us, I think.TRIXIE: Why should we have to pay a heavy forfeit if hisrotten little girl doesn’t want to marry Dmitri?LEONID: Oh, but look at him! Who is not wanting to marryperfect angel like Dmitri! …Dmitri, stop strangling cat, please.
  23. 23. It wasn’t too much longer before the perfect angel Grew UpWell.In the hallway, you’ll notice, in front of his crib. Which he nowcan’t sleep in.
  24. 24. This led to a little creative rearranging of the furniture. Noweveryone has a place to sleep, but it’s not ideal. For a start,Ariadene will be a Teen soon, and she’ll probably want her ownroom. Little brothers are notorious for their lack ofunderstanding and tact, particularly when it comes to new,sensitive, girl-specific matters.I’m sure I’ll think of something…
  25. 25. A better look at Child!Dmitri, because I think he’s gorgeous.Sure, that looks like a flower on his shirt, but when you getcloser, you can see that it’s a radioactive teddy bear. Orpossibly a LEGO man exploding out of a chrysanthemum.Well, that’s what it looks like to me, anyhow.
  26. 26. And because Ariadene and Abhijeet have not gotten enoughscreen time this chapter, here’s a picture of them smustling.Maybe it’s just me, but I prefer it when the smustle isn’t insync. Mostly when people dance a non-partner dance, the onlytime they’re in sync is when they’re on Broadway.
  27. 27. Although perhaps Ariadene should have spent more time on herschoolwork and less on her dancing. Her grades are slippingpretty badly – I don’t think I’ve ever seen a Sim child wad uptheir report card and them stomp on it before.And speaking of slipping…
  28. 28. That’s exactly what Eileen is doing. I think Mifune’s deathtipped her over the edge, but she’s often only in the greenbecause I refuse to buy her yet another bar. Or a big fancyvacation home the family will never use. Or a SculptureCosting At Least Twice The Money In The Family BankAccount.The store is still bleeding money. I had to sell furniture to beable to pay the bills. I am not buying some huge ugly expensivestatue!Obviously I am a big huge meanie.
  29. 29. Fortunately, Eileen rolled the Want to Earn Some Money. Alsofortunately, even earning $1 from the money tree counts. Crisisaverted!I’m not going to add money trees as a regular part of thishousehold because I like that they’re losing money. It’s way tooeasy to get the bank balance ridiculously high in this game.
  30. 30. Eileen and Charlie like to stand around and complain abouthow terrible life is for them.(scoffs) They’ve still got a fully-stocked indoor bar, don’t they?And those curtains cost more than the rent on my apartment.You know, a lot of families in their position would justeconomize, maybe downsize. They could live comfortably offthe proceeds for quite a while. But noooooo, it’s stand aroundand drink and talk about how I’m a big huge meanie. Which Iam not!
  31. 31. I make sure they get aspiration points! See?For some reason, Charlie really likes to wash the dog…
  32. 32. Speaking of whom… Venus the dog is now an Elder.Much as I like animals, I think the lifespan of pets is just toodarn long in this game. By the time they turn elder, I’ve prettymuch forgotten about them.
  33. 33. I’m sure you will all be please to hear that Oliver andOakapple’s little family is still doing well. The girls spend timeskilling, fishing, and gardening, while their fathers spend timeacting as if they have three bolts instead of one.
  34. 34. It may not look like much still, but the farm stand is doing verywell. One or the other of the girls is usually busy restockingwhile the other one sells. Sometimes they have to take a breakfrom selling to run the register, but they never take a break fromrestocking. After all, people can’t buy it if you don’t have it!Saigon has reached her Silver Sales badge, I believe.
  35. 35. In fact, the farm stand is profitable enough that the family canafford a plant light for the upstairs room in the farmhouse. Nowthe girls won’t pass out on the lawn before morning. When theyearn a little extra money, I plan to put some sort of craftingstation up here, to build skills and keep them out of trouble atnight.
  36. 36. There was even enough money for our Family Sim to call theMatchmaker for a date. She Wanted to Fall In Love, but giventhe state of the family’s finances, we couldn’t afford more than$20 for a date. Everyone knows that won’t get you goodchemistry.
  37. 37. But what it will get you is a little aspiration bump from the datererolls. The date ended up as Lame, but they did seem to getalong okay – this is just going to be a “let’s be friends”relationship, I think.Incidentally, if you ever wondered what the Coach wears whenhe’s not on duty screaming at college students for beingslackers, this is it.
  38. 38. And speaking of the Matchmaker, let’s swing on by the houseof Oakapple’s sister Buttercup. As you can see, it’s on the smallside.
  39. 39. This became particularly relevant after Albert’s father’shusband and girlfriend both died.*ALBERT: Honey, I was thinking… We can’t leave Dad allalone in that big old house of his.BUTTERCUP: So we’re going to move in with him?ALBERT: Nooo-ooo. Eight people and a dog rattled around inthat place when I was growing up. I was thinking that we couldfind a new place, smaller than his but big enough foreverybody.BUTTERCUP: Why, if he’s got a mansion paid for already?ALBERT: The heating bills for that place routinely ran intothree digits a month. Sometimes four.*Albert is originally from Everybody Loves Bertie; full details can befound there.
  40. 40. And that is exactly what they did.The green-skinned gentleman is Albert’s father BertramMcClellan – Bertie for short. Those of you who have beenfollowing Already in Progress for a while may remember himfrom the cover of Chapter 12.
  41. 41. Bertie fit right in – he’d always been in touch with his family,and they came to visit occasionally, so he was friends witheveryone already.
  42. 42. But Grampa and Jo have always been especially close.JOSEPHINE: Grampa, do you think any boys will ever ask meout?BERTRAM: Of cowse they wiww! And wemembew, you’weawwoed to ask them out too.JOSEPHINE: I don’t know… What if they say no?BERTRAM: Then they’we obviouswy mentawwy deficient.But how’s about I hiwe the Matchmakew to find you a date,just fow pwactice?JOSEPHINE: Really?BERTRAM: Weawwy. A $5,000 date, I think. Nothing but thebest fow my pwincess.JOSEPHINE: (hugs Bertram exuberantly) Thank you, Grampa!You’re the best!
  43. 43. The Matchmaker was duly summoned, and Jo paid top dollarfor her date. The Matchmaker provided her with vacationtownie Joe Grundstrom, made infamous by dicreasy’s VictorianLegacy.I decided to give him a chance anyway. After all, that allhappened in a past life. People can learn and grow.
  44. 44. Unfortunately, Joe Grundstrom is not one of those people.JOE GRUNDSTROM: You like cute little puppies? Are youcrazy? There has got to be something severely wrong with you!Besides which, they only had one bolt of chemistry. It’s a goodthing Bertie’s loaded.
  45. 45. Not that it mattered all that much – I stuffed his inventory fullof Expensive Stuff when he moved in, and on the last day of therotation, he proved that you can take it with you after all.BERTRAM (delightedly): You packed fow me? You wock!
  46. 46. Bertram McClellan, 82 years old. Bertie was the lead singer ofPrinces of Charming, and a loving partner to multiple people,both male and female. Under normal circumstances, I wouldnever have considered a Polyamory Project Challenge, but itseemed tailor-made for Bertie, and both he and I had fun withit. When it was over, he made a pleasant addition to the B.Shankel household, even if only for a little while.Rest in peace, Bertie. We loved you.
  47. 47. Over at Casa Awesome, Abbey has put on a few pounds, whichdoesn’t seem to bother Descartes a bit. Descartes has put on afew pounds as well, but since they are pure muscle, they lookgood on him.
  48. 48. Tim is within two skill points of achieving his LTW of MaxSeven Skills. He can get one more from eggplant juice, but hehas to earn the last one the old-fashioned way or the gamewon’t recognize it. He’s still got time on his lifebar, so I’m surehe’ll manage.You may notice that Tim now looks different. I have a personalpolicy of putting that old-person-type makeup on any Sim aged80 or over, and Tim has hit that magic number. (Rock Gods andShow Business Icons are exempt from this, since they probablyget plastic surgery. Tinsletown is notoriously unforgiving.) Timis the third Sim ever to qualify.
  49. 49. Rebecca the Romance Sim has been wasting no time in tryingto find someone to love. The family is loaded, so she’s perfectlyhappy to pay the full amount for a date.REBECCA: Oh please, Mrs. Matchmaker, make him tall, dark,and handsome!MATCHMAKER: For this kind of money you can tell me whateye color you want, sweetie.
  50. 50. Cooper Go was indeed tall, dark, and handsome, just asspecified. He was also a complete jerk, with negativechemistry.Since there was obviously a glitch in the crystal ball, Rebeccatried again.
  51. 51. The same objections applied to paperboy Abhijeet Wood.ABHIJEET WOOD: You want me to tell you what my interestsare? Well, aren’t you nosy! Plus, your hairdo is stupid.
  52. 52. In fact, the only viable candidate thus far has been ubiquitoussales clerk Ratna Miguel. He appears to be both Shy and Nice,although I suppose he could just be Shy. Ratna and Rebeccahave a whopping one bolt of chemistry, and Rebecca actuallyrolled the Want to Be Friends with Cooper while on the date, sowe will just have to monitor the situation.
  53. 53. Our last stop today is the home of Mr. Way-Too-Nice and hisHeavenly Bride, who are still equipped with three bolts.I have to admit that I’m not so sure how to write this family, asthey are just so happy and functional all the time. The choresget shared out fairly, Celeste and Eddie both drop everything ifFrederic needs help raising his Fun meter, and in returnFrederic does his homework with no fuss.
  54. 54. They even have autonomous Family Story Time in theevenings!
  55. 55. In fact, the only cloud in Frederic’s sky right now is that histwo best friends from next door are now Teens and wouldrather just chill on the swings instead of swinging on them.
  56. 56. But even that is not as bad as it could be, since the annoyinglittle kid across the street has suddenly turned into a biginteresting kid across the street – who likes to swing on theswings.On which happy thought I will leave you.
  57. 57. And one quick note for readers who are not familiar with Ruth’s(un)Officially Wacky Boolprop Challenge and who may havemissed the joke: this would be why Old Adam is so taken withDmitri’s nose.Until next time, Happy Simming!