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Ill Be There For You Part Two


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Ill Be There For You Part Two

  1. 2. Welcome back to Familiar Faces! Chapter Thirty Four: I'll Be There For You, Part Two Due to problems with the exchange this episode is being hosted on Slideshare. As this is the first time that I've attempted to utilize this method I hope that you will forgive any oddities in the format. I'm learning as I go. I wanted to take a moment to thank everyone that is reading this, if this is your first time with us I would recommend reading the previous chapters so that you'll have a better understanding of what's going on. Even if it isn't your first time reading you may find the number of sims involved in the extended Familiar family to be confusing. In order to help with any potential confusion I want to direct you a few reference items. There is a guide to the current First Circle available on my Livejournal, these are the 'important' folks. And as always there is a full family tree available at Tribal Pages. There are a lot of names on the family tree at this point and many of them will never be seen in the story.
  2. 3. "What are you grinning about Ege?" "What's not to smile about Elijah? It's Saturday night, and I've got a date with a very hot guy." "So what qualifies a guy for hotness? Is it Frances' sweater and tie combo that makes him hot, or is it the sideburns?" "Scoff all you want, but Frances J. Worthington is very hot and it has nothing to do with the way he dresses or the way he styles his hair."
  3. 4. "I'm not scoffing, I'm curious. I'm going clubbing tonight and I want to know what it takes to project this mythical hotness. I figure asking you is about like asking a girl and you won't laugh at me or lie to me." Elijah looked over as Egeus choked on his toothpaste. "So I was wrong, you will laugh at me."
  4. 5. "Sorry, I'm not laughing at you I'm laughing at the absurdity of this conversation. First off you're my cousin, secondly you're straight. Checking you out for hotness isn't something I've ever considered." "Whatever." "Look there's no magic formula, I'm sure you've seen couples that make no sense to you right? Some really bodacious babe with a little nothing looking guy? Or a mousey looking girl with an obvious stud muffin. Hotness isn't based on looks. Looks are the icing, but it's not the cake."
  5. 6. "It's all about attitude Elijah. When you're confident it shows, really, self assurance is a very attractive feature in anyone. Know yourself and your self worth. But if a person can't appreciate you for what you are, if they're only interested in the superficial they aren't worth pursuing." "You sound like Mom, 'be yourself Elijah!'" "Then you should listen to Momma, she's a smart lady."
  6. 7. "There you are, Elijah. Did you know that we're expected to have dates for the wedding?" "No way am I bringing a date to a family function, especially a wedding. Weddings give girls ideas." "So you aren't going to bring a date?" "Nope."
  7. 8. "Good, then I won't have to either." "Don't listen to him Zeke, you should take a date. A party is always more fun with a date, and that's all a wedding is. It's just a party. Why don't you want to take a date?" "I don't know, I've never really . . ." Zeke trailed off. "What did you say?"
  8. 9. "Okay fine, I've never really been on an actual date type, thing." "Sure you have, I've seen you with people at parties and stuff." "Sure hookups at parties, catching a cup of coffee with someone after class, going to the movies with a group. But not like calling someone in advance and asking for a date at a specific time and place." "Really?"
  9. 10. "Well then that settles it 'Zeke, you've got to have a date for the wedding," declared Elijah. "Why? You aren't going to." "Yeah but that's me, I've been on dates. We're talking about you. You got to start somewhere, might as well be the wedding." "But who do I ask? I mean they expect me to bring a girl."
  10. 11. "If you want to bring a guy, no one is gonna say anything. Eureka has two fathers; the family's pretty open about that kind of thing." "But I don't know if I want to bring a guy. How am I supposed to know who to bring? I don't even know what I like, let alone who." "It's not the what that matters, it's the who that counts. Find the who and the what's decided. But don't worry so much about it; one date doesn't equal a life decision. Ask a friend to be your date to the wedding, have a good time. The next one won't be so scary." "Gotta say, for once I agree with Elijah." ___________________
  11. 12. "I have to agree with Tina, Ferdie. I know what I told you about birthday wishes but I thought you'd wish for a video game or I don't know something easy. What's done is done, and if you think your wish facilitated it no one can say any different. Things happen sometimes that we really don't have explanations for." "Isn't there a reason for everything though?" "That's a discussion you'd have to have with your grandfather. I'm sure that there is a reason for everything but not all reasons are known."
  12. 13. "But if I don't know how it happened then it can't be repeated." "Why do you want it repeated? Do you have another townie friend you want to grow up?" "No, not really. But all that happened is that Tina has gone from eternal childhood to eternal teenhood, is that an improvement? I wanted her to grow up, be a teen with us; I didn't think any farther than that."
  13. 14. "It's a lot less difficult for a teen to be able to age, if when the time comes it's what Tina wants I'm sure we can direct her to the necessary forms for University enrollment. Considering her status the dormie program would love to have her. There are other ways as well." "How?" "I'll look into the particulars for you; I don't want to tell you the wrong thing." Emma knew that the most common way for a townie teen to be sent to university was as a high school sweetheart. She wasn't ready to put that thought in her son's mind. Ferdie seemed determined to rescue the girl; she didn't want him to make a life decision in his current frame of mind. He might want to be Tina's white knight, but Emma was more concerned about his future happiness. ________________________
  14. 15. By the time dinner rolled around everyone was a bit more comfortable with Squatch's presence. He and Aldric had had a long talk and Aldric felt better about his past than he had in years. Squatch had persuaded him that his brother's fate wasn't something that Aldric could have changed. Squatch made no bones that he laid the blame for Almeric's life and death firmly at the feet of his parents. While he seemed to hold Richard Davis in more esteem than Aldric could understand, Squatch had been venomous in his feelings towards Lisette.
  15. 16. Ferdie still wasn't sure what to make of the furry creature. However, between his brother's continued homage to Squatch and the fact that his parents seemed more relaxed, Ferdie was loosening up. He had to admit that the guy seemed to know an awful lot about everything, and he had an interesting way of presenting what he knew.
  16. 17. His eating habits left something to be desired, but so did the eating habits of most of Ferdie's cousins. You couldn't judge someone by their table manners alone. Emma and Aldric had learned from their experiences with Frankie, and by the time Ferdie had teened he already knew most of the story behind his family's relationship with Squatch. While he didn't know all of the details he knew enough. Having never known his Uncle he didn't have the same feelings of ambivalence and regret about Almeric Davis that his brother and parents did. Ferdie was curious to know why Squatch, who had been such a good friend to both his Uncle and his brother wanted to meet him.
  17. 18. Once Squatch had eaten his fill Aldric and Emma had accompanied him to the living room. There were a few things that he wanted to discuss with both of them without their sons. The boys were instructed to slowly finish eating and to get dishes done before joining them. "Mom never met him before today huh?" "Neither had Dad, before today he was just my friend." "Are you upset about sharing?" "No, it's better this way. I don't think they trusted his motives before. Now that they know him, they'll understand. He's one of the good guys, he has to be."
  18. 19. "You seem to know everything about my father and about his wife. Do you know anything about my mother?" "I never had the privilege to meet her." "You met the others? Did my father introduce you to her and Almeric?" If he had why hadn't he introduced his other son? "No, my original introduction to Ricky was through his perseverance and curiosity alone. I am sure that Richard would eventually have introduced us, and introduced you and me as well. But there was no need until you had been told the history. Ricky followed your father when Richard came to meet with me. He only made himself known after your father had left. He had to admit he was unable to find his way back to the village alone, he asked for my assistance."
  19. 20. "Why do you think my father would have introduced us? What is your role in all of this?" "My role is to watch, to protect if needed and when the time comes to relate the knowledge that I have." "Watch who? Who needs protection? It seems very specific, if you're supposed to be protect all of us, why wouldn't you talk to Dave when he tried? He's in your words 'one of my kind' isn't he? Why me? Why Now? The Familiar family are descended from the original Cigam members, same as I am. Aren't they?"
  20. 21. "I believe that is where the confusion lays; I am not a guardian of Cigam. My duties are only to the Davis family." Squatch looked at Emma, "Your family bloodlines are as old and as strong as those of your husbands. I meant no disrespect towards your father. I know that he was only seeking answers, but my answers are not for him. I would have been remiss in my duties if I had spoken to him, or to you, without first speaking to your husband. If he had been unwilling to hear me out then I would have waited till the next generation matured. There is still time to prepare, but I feel that the time is growing short and your sons need to be prepared." "Why just to the Davis family, aren't we all a part of this?" "Yes and no."
  21. 22. "Can we come in yet?" Squatch looked at Emma and Aldric, and they looked at each other. "They might as well, they're gonna find out eventually, they might as well hear it from the source." Emma told her husband. "From what he just said he'd probably tell Frankie soon anyway." Squatch nodded, "At this point I feel I have no other recourse. If I am to fulfill my duties of protection then I much fulfill the duties of knowledge. They will be told eventually with or without your consent." "Told what?" asked Ferdie from the doorway.
  22. 23. "Have you all read the history of Cigam? From what Frankie and his cousins told me at our last meeting I assume that what is in the histories is common knowledge?" "I haven't read it but they've told me all about it," replied Ferdie while the other's nodded. "Then you know of the division among the magic users that called themselves Cigam? By the end of times there were at least three divisions. Each group felt that they were in the right; each believed that their way was the best way, the only way to preserve and use the power. There were those that wished to use it for advancement of all, those that wanted to use the power for dominance and those that believed the power had become dangerous and should not be used at all. We do not know the purpose of all or exactly how the battle lines were drawn."
  23. 24. "I didn't see any reference to with holding the use of power in the history that I read," said Aldric. "I did see something to that effect in my father's journal but I thought it was relative to the aftermath." "Written history is often one man's interpretation of events. The best way to change the future is to change the past. The ones that left the histories at the enclave would like you to believe that there were only two sides, their side and the other. Good versus Evil the classic struggle; of course the person who records the events, gets to define what is Good and what is Evil. You will note that in the reading of histories, the writer always believes that they are on the side of Good."
  24. 25. "So what are you saying? Aren't the ones that left the history at the enclave the predecessors of what we call Aliens? There's always been debate as to what their true purpose is, but I don't think anyone regards them as evil." Aldric and Emma exchanged looks; her family had always taken pride in their heritage. "I am sorry I did not explain myself well. I was attempting to explain the situation in terms relative to that which you could identify. Good versus Evil is something that everyone seems to understand. But not everything can or should be defined in such rigid terms. There are shades of grey in every thing. It is not my place to define what is proper. It is up to the individual to define good and evil for themselves."
  25. 26. "Okay so there are multiple sides to everything, and you can't or won't tell us who was right and who was wrong. What can you tell us? And why is it specific to my family and not to Emma's?" "My duty is to relate the role of Marcus Davis played in the events that surrounded the collapse of the source. I am bound by my own ancestor's private pact to relay what he witnessed to the ancestors of his friend, Marcus Davis."
  26. 27. "As you have read in the histories that there was a great battle. This is true, but I do not believe it was a planned coup. There was so much power loose in the world at the time that those who knew how to wield it did so with little thought. It was only a matter of time before the rising tempers were unleashed upon each other." "No one knows what started the final battle; it could have been something as simple as a nudged shoulder at the dinner table. That is how strained things were by that point."
  27. 28. "By the time my ancestor became aware of the disturbance and found his way to a place where he could see, the battle was in full force. There were spells being tossed everywhere and many had already been killed. He searched the battle field for his friend, hoping to find Marcus still alive. My type is of little use in a fight of that kind; our ability to use the power is very rudimentary, the magic of the trees and the plants."
  28. 29. "When he did finally locate his friend he was shocked to see Marcus in the very center of the battle. From what he witnessed, it seemed that Marcus was intent on protecting the entrance to the heart of the source. The original structure which had served as an entrance to the cave system was already in ruins. However, the doorway remained and Marcus stood on the threshold." "Who was Marcus protecting the entrance from, do you know?" "That has always been unclear; Marcus was of the belief that the power should only be used in the direst of circumstances. That he was in the thick of things surprised my ancestor. He felt that Marcus must have a placed himself where he did with purpose."
  29. 30. "As the battle came to a head, Marcus was under direct attack during. He was very powerful in his own right, but even the most powerful can not withstand a constant barrage. Marcus was fighting for his life as much as for anything else, they all were." "After one particularly vicious blast rocked the entrance Marcus seemed to come to a decision, it was time to make his move. He began pulling power into himself."
  30. 31. "One of the first things that every magic user learns is how dangerous the power is. Even when one is using the power to a great degree they are barely touching the source itself. There was enough power in the air to form basic spells and, on the rare occasion that more complex spells were desired, the user still refrained from drawing in very much into themselves. The amount of power that Marcus pulled inward would have killed a lesser wizard. As it was, Marcus staggered as he continued to gather more and more power within himself."
  31. 32. "Once he had pulled in as much power as he could hold, he let it out. But rather than direct it at the other combatants he directed it at the earth, directly down onto the source itself. I am not sure even he knew what he was attempting to do. The effect however was that of a warding. He had warded the source against usage."
  32. 33. "Once he had released all that he had held he was too drained to continue. He would not have been able to protect himself in the state that he was in. My ancestor attempted to move towards him in the hopes that he could physically remove his friend from the battlefield. But there was not enough time. Great magic has great repercussions and the backlash from whatever Marcus had done shook the earth. The cave structure that surrounded the source was collapsing down upon itself and on upon Marcus."
  33. 34. "Whether it was the power that killed Marcus or the entry blocks falling upon him that did so, my ancestor could not tell. What he could tell is that the battle had come to an abrupt stop and those that were left were dazed and confused by what had happened. Those on the battle field were so distraught by what had happened that they did not notice my ancestor removing Marcus's body from the ruins. That ancestor later came to know that whatever Marcus had done had shut off the source from everyone that might have been able to touch it. There were and are still pockets of power in the air. Those that remained at the enclave buried the dead and left their own marks upon the valley in the form of a variety of wards. Anyone attempting to use the power here will, alert anyone that is monitoring the wards. They also run the risk of dying in the process."
  34. 35. "I didn't think anyone could use the power now. If the source is shut off or as you said warded, how would it be possible?" Questioned Emma. "There are pockets of power in the air, and one that knows how to utilize them can do so. There is not enough to be used for anything very complex, the power is mostly dormant. In order to return the power to its full potential the source would have to be restored. But before the source can be restored the wards must be removed. And that is how you fit into the story."
  35. 36. "Me? Me specifically or my family?" "Yes," said Squatch. "Or perhaps that should be qualified as a definite maybe. I have not been granted the knowledge of all the necessary bloodlines, others know more about that than I do." Squatch leaned forward, "To understand, you will first have to understand the way that wards work. Magical wards contain an echo of the person that set them; wards can be broken. In order to break a ward by brute force, large amounts of power are required. As there is no longer a large amount of power available the only way to clear the wards is to remove them. However, wards can only be removed by the one that set the ward, or by someone of the same bloodline as the original caster."
  36. 37. "And you think that Emma's ancestors were the ones that set the wards, so you think that she could remove them?" "That is what I have deduced, but it is not something that I know as fact. But removing the wards would not return the power and doing so would leave the largest of the wards unprotected." "The largest of the wards?" "The one that wards the source, the one that Marcus set."
  37. 38. "So Mom could clear the small wards, and Dad could clear the big one? Or one of us," Ferdie pointed to himself and Frankie, "could clear them all. That's the one referred to in the history? Everyone thinks its Frankie, is it?" "Doubtful, as not all of the wards were set by the same person there needs to be a variety of genetics involved. My contact does not believe that your bloodline yet contains the right components. They are anxious for confirmation, but I do not believe that they will be able to receive that confirmation easily."
  38. 39. "If the ones that set the wards knew how to unblock the source why didn't they?" asked Frankie. "Marcus couldn't do it himself, he was dead, but obviously he was survived by at least one child. Why couldn't that child have undone what their father did? Why make it so complex?" "Because they did not know that Marcus was the one responsible, they still don't know. Only my ancestor saw what happened. Marcus did have a son, but he was not at the enclave during the battle. The earthquake caused by Marcus had separated many families. My ancestor believed that Marcus had known what he was doing. If Marcus cut off the source, he did so with a reason.” "So why are you telling us this? If your duty is to keep the ward in place, wouldn't it be best if we didn't know?"
  39. 40. "I wasn't the one that first revealed your history to you. It is more dangerous to you to know half than to know all. I am not the only one that knows of the wards, there others that watch. Some of them would not hesitate to sacrifice your lives if it meant furthering their cause. I also have reservations regarding my ancestor's belief in Marcus's intentions. It could very well have been that Marcus only intended to block the source temporarily, that he was attempting to stop the battle. His death may have made a temporary measure permanent. " "So how will we know if we can remove the wards or not?"
  40. 41. "If you can see them you can remove them. If you wish you can visit the enclave, you would need a way to get there, but your people seem resourceful. Once you are there you should start to see the wards. I do not know how to go about removing them, it is believed that in seeing the wards the way to remove them would be obvious." "Dad didn't mention seeing anything like that when he was up there, for that matter neither has Bob or anyone else in the UA. They would have seen them wouldn't they?" Interjected Emma. "They would not have known to look."
  41. 42. "There is a risk however. Even if you can see the wards you may not be seeing them all, I do not know how many wards were put in place. There are those who claim to know the exact numbers, but it is possible that they do not know everything. Very few people do." "I think we're going to need to discuss this before we do anything with the information you've given us. There's a lot to digest, and we'll need time to consider all of the implications. It's not a decision we can make lightly and frankly I don't think it's a decision we can make on our own. Whatever we decide to do in the future will affect a lot more than just us, and they should have some say in it. My instinct is to ignore it all, I don't want either of my boys put at risk for a maybe.” “ Dad!”
  42. 43. "The risk will be there even if you choose to ignore it. Share what you wish, but know that the more people that you tell, the greater the risk will become. If it becomes common knowledge that the Davis bloodline holds the key, no one will be able to protect you. You can protect yourselves, the ring that was your father's do you have it? Ricky asked you to retrieve it. Even the smallest chip from the stone will provide a link to the ward, each of you should carry a piece with you at all times." Aldric nodded they would take care of that immediately. As for telling others, he understood why Squatch was hesitant. But they had to put his trust in someone, this was not something they could do alone.
  43. 44. Looking at the boys, Emma regretted that she'd allowed them to be a part of the discussion. "Do you boys understand how serious this is? I want your promises that you won't tell anyone what you've heard here tonight. Not 'Lisha, not Eagle, no one. Later, once we've talked about it, there may be parts that you can share. But not until we've made some decisions." The boys nodded, "We promise." ___________________
  44. 45. "Show confidence, self assurance, know yourself, know your self worth. You can do that Elijah, it's not so difficult. You're not such a bad guy you got it going on, mostly at least." Elijah Familiar ran an internal dialog as he surveyed the scene at Crypt O Night.
  45. 46. Once the scene was in full gear he grabbed the hand of the nearest female and pulled her into a dance. This was one area in which he had confidence. You couldn't grow up in Familiarity and not be able to dance. And while occasionally a girl might demur from joining him on the dance floor, it was a dance club. That's why people came here, to dance.
  46. 47. It was when the dancing was over that he tended to run into walls. Elijah saw himself as a man of action and he supposed he just wasn't much of a conversationalist. But he tried. He asked all the right questions, and it seemed to go okay till they got to color of her underwear. Patricia Wan thought that was a bit too personal. At least he had her name, now all he needed was her phone number.
  47. 48. "Come on, Patty. I'm not asking you to marry me; all I want is your phone number. Give me a chance; I'm a very likeable guy. And I'm cute, just squint your eyes and tilt your head and you'll agree. Now don't smile, you might give me the wrong impression if you smile. Don't laugh either; I might start thinking you like me if you laugh at my jokes. But if that's what it takes, I can be very obnoxious if I put my mind to it."
  48. 49. "I'm not trying to be rude, but aren't you a bit young? What are you a freshman? Attending one of the local colleges I bet? A trust fund baby slumming in town for the night, heard the townie girls were easy? You'd have better luck with a cheerleader; she wouldn't have to be at work in the morning."
  49. 50. "You know I struck up a conversation with a cheerleader the other day, I asked her what she thought of the Sound and the Fury. She thinks the Sounds stand a good chance but the Furies will end up taking the championship. We were walking out of Lit Class at the time. If all I was looking for was some vapid airhead to bounce with, a cheerleader would be perfect. I'm sorry I bothered you; I thought you might be the type of Woman that would enjoy an occasional evening of dinner and conversation. But, you don't even want to know who I am." Elijah put his drink down and stood up. "I'm a sophomore by the way, almost at least." _______________
  50. 51. Emma and Aldric had walked with Squatch part way back to his cabin. They had, had a few additional questions along the way but no great revelations had been imparted. The walk back had allowed them some time to gather their thoughts and to make sure that they were on the same track before speaking to the boys.
  51. 52. I know you guys are curious and I'm sure that you have questions. The two of you heard almost everything that we did, and you know just as much as we do. We can talk about what we heard, but we aren't going to have any answers. We're going to want to talk to your Grandfather and to your Uncle Bob before we can come to any decisions. Your Mom and I are worried that you may not understand the risks. We don't want either of you to do anything about this until we've talked it over, weighed the consequences and developed a plan of action that will eliminate as many risks as possible.
  52. 53. “ So you think we should try to remove the wards?” asked Frankie “ I didn't say that, and from what I heard, Squatch doesn't believe that either of you would be successful in removing them. I'd like to know more about these mysterious others and his contacts. Your Grandfather may have some insight on that he was intuitive enough to set his own watchers in the area a long time ago.” “ Frankie I know that you won't like hearing what I'm about to say, but I would prefer that you not come and visit Squatch on your own while you're in college. That goes for you as well Ferdie. You kids are going to have the beach house at your disposal; I want you to spend breaks on Twikki rather than here. I know that once you get to college you'll probably figure you don't have to listen to us any more. We can't keep you from doing anything, but I hope that you'll still listen to our advice.” Emma smiled at the boys, wishing there was a way she could keep them from growing up.
  53. 54. "Why not? You still don't trust him do you? He told you everything he knows and you don't believe him." "It's not that we don't trust him, he's been a good friend to you and I don't feel he'd do anything to purposely harm you. But I don't think he told us everything he knows, and one thing that he told us doesn't jive with what we already know. He said that no one knows about the Davis family connection, but he's wrong. My step mother knew, she had to have known. My Dad might have told her but I don't think he did. I don't want to believe that Squatch betrayed the family and told her either. He seems rather scrupulous in his 'duty' but someone told her; we need to find that loose thread."
  54. 55. "Yeah okay.” Said Frankie doubtfully. "I don't know about you guys, I'm bushed. We've got a long drive back in the morning and I'd like to get an early start. Why don't you bank the fire and we'll all turn in?" ___________________
  55. 56. "I'm just saying give it a chance Emi, it's only for a year, after that Elisha will be around as well. It's not like there won't be other women around, I don't think we could get rid of Emily if we wanted to." "So not only do I have to live with six guys, but my solace is that their girlfriends will be hanging around constantly as well." "You like Emily, you're just being obstinate." "I like the guys too, that doesn't mean I want to live in a locker room. Have you smelled the bathroom over there lately?"
  56. 57. "There are three bathrooms, if you'll be more comfortable we'll designate one of them as ladies only." As Egeus and his sister Emilia were discussing the potential problems of her being the only female at the frat house they were joined by another student. As Stella Torreno sat down both of the Summerdreams looked at her expectantly, expecting to exchange pleasantries. When Stella only nodded in their direction they shrugged it off, not everyone enjoyed table conversation while they ate. There was something in Stella's manner that made Egeus take a second look. He couldn't swear by it but for some reason he thought he recognized her. She also seemed intent on the conversation, though he never could quite catch her eye.
  57. 58. "I just don't want to spend a year as their maid Ege." "We have a maid you don't need to worry about that." "The maid's only there for an hour or two in the mornings, sure they'll take care of the overnight accumulation. But, for twenty two hours a day I'm either going to be picking up after the boys or trying to ignore the smell of rotting food coming from the pizza boxes." "If it gets too bad we'll do something about it, they've been pretty good so far. Ezra even did dishes yesterday." "How many did he break?" "Two or three, I don't know that's not the point."
  58. 59. "Its tradition Emi, Dad expects you to live in the house. And let's not even get into what Grandpa Dave would think if he found out you were reluctant. He'd be heartbroken." "No he wouldn't, he'd pout but I think he'd understand. Like you said it's only a year, once Elisha's there the two of us can run herd over everyone. I just don't see why it's necessary that I move in right this minute." "Well look at it this way, if you wait till next year you'll have to fight Frankie and Elisha for a corner bedroom. If you do it now, you can stake your claim and by the time they get there it'll be your room no questions."
  59. 60. "You'll really get me the corner bedroom?" "Am I the most awesome big brother in the world or what? By the way who was the girl that sat down with us in there? I'm sure I recognized her, but she looks different than I remember." "Her name's Stella, I've run into her a few times in the lab. You've probably seen her on campus." "That's not it," Egeus shook his head, "I'll figure it out later, I need to run. If you need help moving your stuff, grab Euc. He's the perfect mule loves showing off his muscles carrying stuff." ______________
  60. 61. The drive back down the mountain from the lake always seemed to take twice as long as the drive up. You'd think going down hill would be faster, but it wasn't. Returning home rarely held the anticipatory excitement that seemed to make the drive there go by more quickly. Frankie, having been removed from probation spent most of the trip texting various people finding out if there was any trouble he could get into once they hit town. If Ferdie seemed withdrawn no one seemed to really notice, while he was anxious to get home he was also feeling oddly nervous.
  61. 62. What if Tina hated him? He guessed he was about to find out. He hadn't really expected her to be waiting for him when he got home, but there she was. When he'd first seen her, Ferdie had done a double take she looked different. Of course she looked different, did he expect her to still be in pigtails? But she was still Tina; and he would have recognized her anywhere. "Hey Tina." "Hey."
  62. 63. "Am I allowed to enter the presence of Princess Tina? Or has this lowly pirate been banished for crimes against the crown?" "If only I had the power, what did you think you were doing Ferd?" "I thought it was what you wanted. I guess I just wanted it so much that I assumed you did too." "Joke's on me."
  63. 64. "I don't know why it worked. I'm glad it did and you gotta look at the positives. You can stay out after dark now, and you only have to go to school till one." "And I have to get a job; you do know that all townie teens have jobs." "Money's useful!" "I can't slack off in class cause I'm no longer repeating the same stuff for the hundredth time." "You're learning new things every day!"
  64. 65. "And Mom says that if you don't like being a teen that you can go to college. There are some benefits to being a good friend to the son of a Minister of Education. Think of the possibilities for continuous torture of annoying cows. Is it such a bad thing to grow up?" "Do I have to act grown up?' "I have no idea how grown ups act. But do know that Princesses can do any thing they want. It's part and parcel of the gig."
  65. 66. "Anything I want?" "Except hula." "There's one thing I always envied the teenagers for."
  66. 67. "Can I tell you a secret?" "Sure" "I never really thought you had cooties." ____________________
  67. 68. "Evette, did you talk to Vonny?' "We share a bedroom Ewan I talk to her everyday, but I didn't talk to her about you. Did you want me to?" Gah that was the last thing she needed was Ewan wanting her to intercede for him with her sister. "No it's okay, it's just she's here and I didn't know what she knew." "Why is she there? I thought she was at Enrique's. You know this is so typical of Evonne, I'm left babysitting and she's off running around town with no cares."
  68. 69. "You shouldn't say things like that about your sister Evette. She said she wanted help with her history report. I just wondered if maybe she was giving me a sign on some kind, girls are always confusing the issue with other issues." "Whatever. I doubt she has any ulterior motives, Vonny hates history. She probably does want help." "So what should I do?" "Uhm help her with her report? If you don't want to though, just tell her you're busy. It's not like I can't help her."
  69. 70. "So you see if Corporal Boyd had chosen to assign the malcontents to latrine duty rather than sending them on a forced march then the 'Great Hot Dog Rebellion of 1812' would never have occurred. It's just one more instance of bad decision making that changed the course of history. Another instance of that would be when Lt. Komei unwisely decided that his patrol group should do their daily march in their underwear." "Why would he make them do that?" "That's explained in chapter five, here I'll show you."
  70. 71. "See here where it talks about the Baguette uprising? That's a reference to Lt. Komie's poor decision making. History is riddled with examples. It's not just the military either, if you take a look in chapter eight you'll find plenty of examples of when Political figures were directed incorrectly. Lobbying incorrectly, voting no on bills that would improve inner city parks structure. You name it." "Wow this is great, you really think I can get a paper out of this? I have to do an outline and everything." "I can help you with that if you want." "Would you? That'd be great Ewan."
  71. 72. "Thanks for all your help Ewan; I think I really have a handle on the topic now. I'll probably get an A because of you." "Anything for you Evonne. So uh willyougototheSeniorpicnicwithmeplease?" "What?" "I'd really like to take you to the Senior picnic, it's going to be a blast."
  72. 73. Go to the Senior picnic with the guy her sister had been drooling over for months? Well it was THE Senior picnic, but this was Ewan and he belonged to Vetty. Okay so he obviously didn't think he belonged to Vetty, but Evonne considered him Vetty's. "Ewan. I don't know what to say. There's no one I would rather go to the Senior picnic with, but well you know Enrique and I." "I didn't think you two were serious, you told him you didn't want to be committed." "That's true, but we still kinda have an agreement. With something as important as the Senior picnic you should be inviting someone special."
  73. 74. "I think you're pretty special Evonne." "Oh Ewan, I just can't, I'm sorry. I don't think it would be a good idea. You're such a great guy; you deserve to have someone that's devoted to you. I can't be that someone." ___________________
  74. 75. For Eagle Langerak's birthday there were no noise makers, no party horns. And while some guests, were unable to refrain from cheering the lad on while he made his wish and blew out the candles; most kept in mind the transition boy's disposition and tried to show restraint. As Eagle blew out the candles he heard his brother Elan say, "remember the ninjas twerp." And with that in mind he took a deep breath and announced his new aspiration.
  75. 76. Eagle Langerak Sagittarius 2/1/10/8/8 Romance/Family LTW - Prestidigitator
  76. 77. "Romance? Romance? Eagle, what were you thinking?" "I panicked okay? If Elan hadn't said what he said I would have been okay, but he had to go and remind me." "Remind you of what?" "Of the Aspiration Ninja. D'oh"
  77. 78. "Eagle, there's no such thing as an Aspiration Ninja. It was another one of their jokes, you shouldn't take them seriously." "I saw him dude, when we were in Takemizu. He told Elm how there are only two aspirations choices allotted per family, and Elm and Elan had already used ours. If I didn't choose the same aspiration as one of them, the whole family would fall to ruin. Seven years bad luck, that's harsh." Ferdie shook his head. "Not possible Eagle, think about it. Do you see the Capp's falling to ruin? Or the London's?"
  78. 79. "It's not something you'd notice immediately. It could be any seven years, just wait you'll see. They're ninja's, they're sneaky." "Then why didn't you take Knowledge? If you had to choose between Knowledge and Romance, wouldn't Knowledge be the better option?" "Like I said I panicked." ___________________
  79. 80. "Hey Corey, can I talk to you?" "Talk away." "I meant in private?" "Oh, sure give me a minute to finish cleaning the floor with Eljah." "I would take issue with that but the truth is on the table." Replied their mutual cousin from the other end of the pool table. "You're having a lucky run, but you're about to hit the wall. You never have been able to make a bank shot."
  80. 81. "So what'd you want to talk to me about?" "I was just wondering if you were planning on going to Eureka's wedding." "Well I don't know, I suppose I should since he's my brother. Of course I'm going to the wedding. I'm in the wedding party, same as you. Why?" "He's your brother right; I knew that, of course you'd go to his wedding. Well since you're going to the wedding and I'm going to the wedding, I was thinking maybe we could go together. You know like a date, kinda."
  81. 82. "But I thought you were gay?" "Definitely not gay. Undeclared, is that a problem?" "Just promise me that if, for some strange reason, this goes horribly bad that you don't declare for the other side immediately. I don't think I could handle being known as the reason someone turned against women." ____________________
  82. 83. “ Do you agree with Mom and Dad about the stuff in Three Lakes? They don't want me to talk Squatch again.” “ Is that really what they said Frankie? I thought what they asked was that you don't go up there alone. That until we find out a bit more about these others that Squatch referred to that you play it safe. Is that so much to ask?”
  83. 84. “ I guess not, but it's like they don't trust him. And that's stupid, he's just trying to help us.” “ It's not him they don't trust. Frankie, I don't think you realize how dangerous this situation could be to you.” “ So it's me they don't trust.” “ It's not that we don't trust you or your judgment, you're a bright kid. We don't want you to take any unnecessary risks.”
  84. 85. “ But I'll be protected, they're having that chain made for me. It's like a guardian spirit right?” “ Chains can be broken. We don't know what we're dealing with here. We're coming closer to the full story, but there's still a lot of things we don't know.” “ I always thought you knew everything Grandpa.” “ Well be prepared for disappointment kid, no one knows everything. Not even your friend Squatch.” _____________________
  85. 86. "What do you mean you're not going to the picnic? I know you want to go and Ewan invited you. Didn't he?" "I told him no, I'm not going to go out with a guy you like Vetty. I may not agree with your attachment to Ewan but as far as I'm concerned he's yours. If you want to waste the best years of your life dreaming about something that's not going to happen, who am I to interfere?" "Really? You told him no because of me? But it's the Senior picnic."
  86. 87. "It's just a picnic. You're my sister. Besides, if he can't see how great the two of you would be together, he's a dork. I don't want to be seen with a dork, it'd ruin my reputation." "Thanks Vonny." "Sure, hey we better get dressed we got some toddlers to toss."
  87. 88. And so they did. In what was hopefully the final toddler tossing of generation seven, Evette and Evonne Capp did the honors and assisted the youngest of the Capp brood into toddler hood.
  88. 89. With such a wide disparity in their ages, Ethan and Ethel are bound to be spoiled by their elder siblings. Ezra and 'Zeke made a special trip home for their transition party, and the two youngest seem to delight in the attention from the two eldest.
  89. 90. Like most of the Capp brood, Ethan and Ethel Capp will most likely be quite a handful. They are each extremely active and playful. Unlike their elder siblings however, they got very little in the way of looks from their mother. The youngest of the Capp children are very much their father's children. ___________________
  90. 91. "I can't believe you're going to skip the picnic in order to see that girl Frank." "That girl has a name, and besides it's not like the picnic is going to be any big deal." "It's the final party for the class. You've been moaning about missed parties all semester and now you're volunteering to miss the last one." "I don't want to miss it, but it's the only way I could work this trip out. Today was the last day of classes, Annie leaves on Friday. Tomorrow is the only time I could get away before she leaves. It's not like I won't see everyone in the class again. We'll be together again on Sunday." "But as freshmen."
  91. 92. "So who did you decide to go to the picnic with?" "I'm not going with anyone specific, Edgar asked me, and so did Elvis and Amin. They're all great guys, I couldn't say no to any of them could I? So we're all meeting up and we're going to hang out together." "And they're all okay with this?" "Sure why not?"
  92. 93. "Look, as long as you're going to miss the biggest bestest party of the year, you might as well make the occasion memorable and take her some flowers." Elisha Familiar might not agree with her best friend's decision to skip the Senior picnic. She might not believe that Frankie was being realistic about that girl Annie. But a sale was a sale. ________________
  93. 94. “ Elsie, hey what's up?” Ezra asked her while involuntarily looking at his shoes. “ Don't worry they're safe. I don't normally drink and if my behavior the other night is any indication I don't think it's something I'm going to be taking up. I wanted to apologize for my behavior so that we can stop avoiding each other.” “ I haven't been avoiding you.” “ Yeah okay, you ducked into the girls restroom yesterday cause you had an urgent need to tinkle?”
  94. 95. “ Well when a guys gotta go, he's gotta go.” “ Yeah but you bypassed the men's room to duck into the women's.” “ Okay you caught me, I shouldn't have ducked in there. I really shouldn't have ducked in there, any illusions I previously had are now gone, and one of my professors has started winking at me in class. She thinks I followed her in there. I would have been better off if I'd let you list off my faults, than having to avoid advances from a geriatric drama professor.”
  95. 96. “ Why would I be listing your faults? I'm the one that messed things up.” “ Obviously I did something that made you feel the need to drown your sorrows in a gallon of rum.” “ The only thing you did was not laugh at my stupid joke.” “ What joke? Tell me again I'll laugh this time.” “ No you won't it was stupid and not at all funny, which is why I never tell jokes. I thought maybe if I had a few drinks I'd experience that drunken euphoria that makes everyone think you're hilarious and cool.”
  96. 97. “ The only person that thinks a drunk is hilarious and cool is themselves. You don't have to be drunk or hilarious to be cool Elsie, you just have to be you. You're a pretty great person and I was having a great time with you the other night.” “ Until I puked on your shoes.” “ Well yeah, if we do it again I could stand to skip that part.” “ You actually want to risk it?” “ I think it might be worth the risk. My Aunt's wedding is coming up, we could try again then. I can't promise that Elijah won't spike the punch, but since my shoes will be rentals, who cares?” __________________
  97. 98. “ Wow, Frankie are those for me? No one's ever given me flowers before.” “ Do you like 'em, 'Lisha said you would. She was just trying to make a sale.” Annie gave him a quick hug as she reached for the flowers and inhaled deeply. “They're wonderful. Which one's 'Lisha? Was she the blond or the dark haired one?” “ She's the one you didn't meet. She was working over the summer, she's running her Uncle's flower shop.” “ Right, she's the one that doesn't like me.”
  98. 99. “ You and 'Lisha would like each other if you ever met, what's not to like?” “ She's your best friend and she's a girl. She's never going to like any other girl taking up your time. Can't say I blame her for being territorial. It's not an issue though is it? I doubt I'll ever meet her.” “ Well if you come to FSU for the Spring Tournament, you could meet her. I promised you a party didn't I?”
  99. 100. “ Why are we wasting time talking about other people? We've only got a couple of hours and I have loads of stuff I want to show you. Is there anything you want to do now that you're in the big city?” “ I don't care what we do, I just wanted to spend some time with you. We can do whatever you want.”
  100. 101. “ Well since I let you win our bowling match, I think it's only fair that you let me win at chess.” “ I don't think you'll have too many problems doing that. I've never been that good at chess. Space Invaders is more my forte.” “ Do you want to go to the arcade after this? There's a really cool one down on the Riverwalk. It's not far from here, just down the hill.”
  101. 102. “ Nah, see your problem was that you used the wrong strategy. You got so caught up running from the ghosts that you didn't get the dots fast enough. The ghosts are easy to duck away from and if you're quick enough around the maze they're always in eatable mode so when they get near you just stomp em.” “ Well at least I didn't keep tilting the pinball machine every five seconds. I swear the manager was giving you the evil eye, he thought you were trying to cheat.” “ I was trying to cheat. It's the only way I know how to win at those things.”
  102. 103. “ Today was great Annie, you were right there's tons of stuff to do around here. Thanks for showing them all to me.” “ We didn't cover half of it. I barely got to show you any of the shops.” “ We went to the bookstore, the H&M, the bodyworks, two record stores and at least three t-shirt places.” “ That's not shopping! We didn't make it to a single mall. It's too bad we didn't have more time, to really shop you need a full day solely dedicated to the pursuit of the bargain.”
  103. 104. “ I'm sure you'll find it shocking, but I'm not all that sad about the shopping. I do wish we had more time though. I guess I need to walk you home, if I'm going to catch the late bus. You know my favorite part about today?” “ What?” “ Spending it with you.” “ That was my favorite part too.” ____________________-
  104. 105. “ Hey what are you doing here Evette?” “ I just wanted a chance to say goodbye before you leave for college. I know you're going to be pretty busy this weekend. I didn't think I'd get a chance to talk to you alone before you left.” “ You want to come inside?” “ That's okay this won't take long.”
  105. 106. “ I'm sorry that things didn't work out for you with Evonne. But just so you know that when you think about high school and the girls you knew. Your biggest regret won't be that Evonne said no. It'll be that you didn't ask me instead.”
  106. 107. “ Evette” “ Good-bye Ewan.” ___________________
  107. 108. When Debbie Johnson-Stephens heard her daughter's laughter outside the apartment she got up to see who Annie was with. When she looked out the window, she felt as if she'd been teleported back in time to her own past. The boy her daughter was with looked so much like her own high school boyfriend that he could have been Almeric's twin. How many times had she and Ricky played out that same scene?
  108. 109. Seeing them like that Debbie knew exactly who the boy was. When she had seen him in Three Lakes, the name had rung a bell, jostled a memory in her mind. Now she was sure. Aldric's son, it had to be. What did it mean that he was here now with Annie? Annie hadn't told her who she was going to be with today, she'd just said that she was going to be out with a friend. A friend? Debbie knew that the two had stayed in contact but not that they were as close as it appeared they'd become.
  109. 110. Why did seeing Aldric's son fill her with trepidation? Was it just that she didn't want to see her daughter hurt? Why did she get the feeling that history was meant to be repeated? Just because Almeric had hurt her, didn't mean that this boy would hurt Annie. Should she tell Annie about the Davis family? Should she warn her? Did it even matter at this point? It was too late to demand that Annie not see him. Her daughter would be leaving for college in the morning, she wasn't Debbie's little girl any longer. And what would Debbie be warning her about? Lisette Davis and her evil nature were long gone, she had no control over this boy. ________________
  110. 111. Thank you for reading Familiar Faces! When next we visit with the Familiars, heir Frankie and his cousin Elisha will be at University with their cousins. A new generation will be taking over, what will it mean for the family?