A Piratical Legacy Chapter 20 - The Truth Will Make You Fret


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A Piratical Legacy Chapter 20 - The Truth Will Make You Fret

  1. 1. Chapter 20 – The Truth Will Make You FretHello dear readers and welcome back to Its A Piratical Legacy! This is the twentieth chapter, and Generation Five is about to start university.Geez, at this rate its going to be forty chapters before I finish! Well, hopefully not - I think another 10 chapters should do it, and you can hold meto that!I also apologize for the lack of vowels in the chapter title above - it wouldnt fit otherwise.Anyway, on with the chapter! If youre lost, send me a note or read my previous chapters. Oh, and heading over tohttp://purplebunny.tribalpages.com might help with the genealogy aspect as well.
  2. 2. Umm... guys? I said I was sorry about the vowel thing. Really, dont you think youre overreacting?...Oh. This is about me missing Talk Like A Pirate Day, isnt it.
  3. 3. Fine! I promise never to miss it again! Arr! Avast! Egads! Savvy?Onward!....Now can I get down from this thing?Guys?
  4. 4. It was a beautiful fall day when the Buccaneer family gathered around the dining room table."It feels empty not having Grace here," Gertie pouted. "Whyd she have to leave early for university anyway?""She and Morgan wanted to sightsee a bit before classes begin," Marie explained. "Your brothers will be leaving tomorrow too.""I have to be an only child?" Gertie pouted. "But I like having everyone around. Its gonna be so lonesome around here! At least Ill still have Roseand Pierce to play with."
  5. 5. "Nope," William was quick to point out. "Pierce is leaving when Nick and I do. Were renting a house on campus but the girls are staying in adorm.""Wish I could have stayed in a dorm like the posh one they get," Roche mumbled as he ate his cereal.""Yeah, theres all kinds of new buildings going up," Nick added. "Our house is in a new development too.""A few other Islanders are going to be attending there, as well," Pao said as he sat down to join the meal. "All of your distant relatives. Theres abig class, so Jacks chartered a plane to take everyone.""This is so totally unfair," Gertie grumbled. "The islands going to be so empty! Bleh."
  6. 6. "I think both of us will be heading out soon too, Pearlie," Pao said later that afternoon. "Were both showing our age, thats for sure.""Wuf," Pearl said affectionately. She licked Paos palm and flopped over for a tummy rub.
  7. 7. When she stood up, it was to take that final journey. Pao had known Pearl would be gone soon, but he didnt expect it to happen this soon."Goodbye, Pearl," Roche sobbed. "You were always a good dog."A wuf, sounding as if it was coming from down a long tunnel, sounded in response.It took the family a long time to get over the loss of Pearl. They decided to wait a while before bringing another pet into the family as they didntfeel anyone could replace Pearl in their hearts.
  8. 8. A few weeks later, the time had come. Will (left) and Nick (right)packed up their clothes, and a few treasured possessions. They piled into the car and drove off with squealing tires."Nicholas, my brother?" "Hey! Dont forget Pierce!""Yes, William, my brother?" More squealing tires, this time in reverse."Ready to wreak havoc on our dear sisters aspirations of fame, "Took you guys long enough!"fortune, and popularity?" "There was a misdirected miscommunication, Pierce.""Indeed." "Whatever. Lets hit Paris!""Paris, here we come!"
  9. 9. Of course, their sisters and most of their cousins (close and distant) were already there.At LeSnooty Nouveau Dormitoires, we have:(L-R)Susanna dEath, an exchange studentMorgan Buccaneer (Jack --> Mary --> Ivy --> Bart --> Morgan)Grace Buccaneer (Jack --> Mary --> Ivy --> Roche -- Grace)Morgan and Grace were very excited to be in dorm. Susanna opted to be cool.
  10. 10. In a small 2-bedroom house on campus:Back: (L-R)William Buccaneer (Jack --> Mary --> Ivy --> Roche --> William)Nicholas Buccaneer (Jack --> Mary --> Ivy --> Roche --> Nicholas)Front:Pierce Buccaneer (Jack --> Mary --> Ivy --> Bart --> Pierce)Will and Nick decided to have pity on the people they would meet at university in Paris. Though they opted to keep similar hairstyles, Will dyedhis faux hawk blond, while Nick continued au naturale. The two of them were voted among the best-looking sims on campus, but the man holdingfirst place was clearly Pierce.
  11. 11. In Building #2 of LeSnooty Nouveau Dormitoire, another group of Seated (L-R):Pirate Island natives took up residence. Jersey Toyonaga (Jack --> Elisabeth --> Toni --> Cestus --> Jersey) Scipia Toyonaga (Jack --> Elisabeth --> Toni --> Scipio --> Scipia)Four girls, all Toyonaga cousins, decided that their dorm should bedeclared Girls Only. Of course, since there were only four rooms, Rani dated Pierce Buccaneer for most of their high school days andthat wasnt a problem. she was eager to resume their relationship at the earliest possible opportunity.*Standing (L-R):Justina Toyonaga (Jack --> Elisabeth --> Toni --> Scipio --> Justina) Jersey also dated a distant cousin, Peregrin Avidreader.Rani Buccaneer (Jack --> Elisabeth --> Toni --> Benjamin --> Rani<-- Nala <-- Eddie <-- Mary <-- Jack) * Sorry, De, youre not getting grandbabies... youre getting kittens.
  12. 12. The boys of Toyonaga descent got a second 2-bedroom house in the same complex as Nick, Will, and Pierce, though they werent next-doorneighbors.Clockwise from 12 oclock, we have:Hieland Toyonaga, in the cream jacket (Jack --> Elisabeth --> Toni --> Cestus --> Hieland)Holstein Toyonaga (Jack --> Elisabeth --> Toni --> Cestus --> Holstein)Green Boolprop (Jack --> Elisabeth --> Toni --> Hadrian --> Green)Rajah Buccaneer (Jack --> Elisabeth --> Toni --> Benjamin --> Rajah <-- Nala <-- Eddie <-- Mary <-- Jack)Sejanus Toyonaga (Jack --> Elisabeth --> Toni --> Scipio --> Sejanus)Green is alien son of Hadrian, and has been adopted by Hadrians husband Ray, a simself.Rajah is more than a bit of a player. However, he eventually will settle on Moll Thayer, the daughter of another simself.Sejanus, meanwhile, is also dating another Pirate Island native: Ellen Avidreader.
  13. 13. There are many descendants of Jack Thayer at university in Paris. Adelaide Thayer (Jack --> Mary --> Jack --> April --> Adelaide)These are the most closely related of that batch - the rest are halfCurtin, so are living with other cousins in one of the other dorms. Moll, Don, and Adelaide are half-simself. Their father is Blite27. Moll is in a relationship with Rajah Buccaneer. Adelaide has moreStanding (L-R): than a bit of a crush on Hieland.Don Thayer (Jack --> Mary --> Jack --> April --> Don)Ellen Avidreader (Jack --> Mary --> Jack --> Aspen --> Ellen) Peregrin and Ellen are also half-simselves. Their mother is Denise,Peregrin Avidreader (Jack --> Mary --> Jack --> Aspen --> Peregrin) aka avidreader2466. Peregrin is planning to marry Jersey Toyonaga, as mentioned earlier. Ellen wants to get engaged to SejanusTop step (L-R): Toyonaga.Andrew Thayer (Jack --> Mary --> Jack --> Andrew)Moll Thayer (Jack --> Mary --> Jack --> April --> Moll) Andrew is the oops adoption by Jack and Meadow.
  14. 14. This group of Pirate Islanders is a little less connected to the royal Sawyer West (Marina/smoothiequeen87 & sim Shane West -->family of Buccaneers. What they are is a group of simself Sawyer)descendants. Hera Deity (simMe & simHubby --> Hercules --> Hera <-- Elphaba <-- Gage Uglacy & Marina/smoothiequeen87)Back (L-R):Tom West (Marina/smoothiequeen87 & sim Shane West --> Tom) Tom is involved with Scipia Toyonaga.Luna Curious (Pascal Curious & Pollination Tech --> Luna) Orpheus is dating a townie, but hes a romance sim so its likely notOrpheus Deity (simMe --> Demeter (plantspawn) & Pascal --> serious.Orpheus) Hera is dating One Curtin. Luna is dating Emily Curtin.Front (L-R):
  15. 15. This is the last house, the descendants of house Curtin. James Curtin (Jack --> Celeste --> William --> James <-- Autumn <- - Jack <-- Mary <-- Jack)Standing, back (L-R): Two Curtin (Other-Alan/PolliTech --> Sadism --> Two <-- Alder <--Borealis Curtin (Jack --> Celeste --> Blake --> Borealis) Jack <-- Mary <-- Jack)Gavin Biggs (Jack --> Celeste --> Irony --> Gavin <-- Wedge <--Anne <-- Mary <-- Jack) Front: Tycho Biggs (Jack --> Celeste --> Irony --> Tycho <-- Wedge <--Middle (L-R): Anne <-- Mary <-- Jack)One Curtin (Other-Alan/PolliTech --> Sadism --> One <-- Alder <--Jack <-- Mary <-- Jack) Unfortunately, we wont be seeing any of the university kids in thisEmily Curtin (Jack --> Celeste --> William --> Emily <-- Autumn <- volume other than this brief glimpse, and possibly the odd date or- Jack <-- Mary <-- Jack) two. This chapter is focusing on Roches kids and Barts kids.
  16. 16. "Morgan, what did you put for your thesis statement?" Grace called from down the hall. She and Morgan were settled into their new digs anddecided to get an early start on their class work so theyd have more time for fun later in the semester. In Graces mind, this meant that Morganwould do most of the work and Grace would copy. In Morgans mind, they would each do their own work and Morgan would do the favor ofproofreading Graces paper."Just write down yours and Ill look it over," Morgan called back. "But bring it in here instead of yelling or our housemates will hate us before theyeven know us!""Oh, fine," Grace grumbled. She hurriedly jotted something down and brought it over for Morgan to rewrite."Grace," Morgan said in exasperation, "arent you planning on doing any of your own work?""I plan on getting a degree," Grace said primly. "How I get there is my own concern."
  17. 17. Morgan shook her head, scribbled a few corrections on the sheet of "Susanna," the girl responsed. "But you can call me Anna."looseleaf, and handed the paper back to Grace. Grace shoved it in herpocket and headed downstairs. "You look very familiar, Anna," Grace said. "Do I know you from somewhere? Have you ever lived on Pirate Island?""Maybe I can convince someone else to do it for me," she murmuredas she snagged a tray of pancakes from the cafeteria counter. "Not that I can remember," Anna shrugged, digging into her pancakes. "But maybe when I was little. I was very little when I"Is it okay if I sit here?" the third girl living in their dorm asked as moved in with Grandfather."Grace finished her meal. "Well, Im sure it will come to me sometime," Grace said. "I should"Knock yourself out," Grace said, gesturing grandly. "Im Grace." get back to my term paper. See you around, Anna."
  18. 18. Their term papers completed, Grace and Morgan had a lot of free time to goof off. During one particularly intense session of Red Hands, theydiscussed their housemate, Anna."Im telling you, Morgan, she looks insanely familiar," Grace insisted. "I know that Ive met her before, but where? She says shes never lived onPirate Island!""Have you looked in the mirror lately?" Morgan asked. "The two of you could be sisters, you look so much alike.""Really?" Grace shrugged. "I dont see it
  19. 19. Grace was distracted from pursuing the subject further, though, when the phone rang later that night. It was Simba, the placeholder at ArravastHouse, wondering if Grace was ever going to get around to pledging in."Eh, why not," Grace shrugged. "This dorm is nice but Im not planning on living here indefinitely."
  20. 20. Of course, acceptance was a mere formality. Grace was guaranteed a place at Arravast thanks to being one of Roches children. While membershipwas open to anybody, only a select few qualified to live at the Greek residence."Ill move in at the end of term," Grace said. "Have my brothers pledged in yet?""Im stopping by to see them in a week or two," Simba said. "I cant wait til you guys are moved in - Im looking forward to returning to PirateIsland."
  21. 21. While Anna also signed up to pledge the Greek house, Morgan my idea of fun is flipping through the encyclopedia. Why is that sowasnt as interested. It was only after researching Arravasts origin weird?"that she decided she might as well join. To get in the spirit of fun-loving Greek behaviour, she dumped a box of soap flakes into the "Its nerdy!" Grace said with some exasperation.fountain. "You know, Grace, you arent very nice.""You go, Morgan!" Grace whooped as she walked by. "I didnt knowyou had it in ya!" "Neither are you, Morgan.""I know how to have fun," Morgan protested. "Its just that usually "Good point."
  22. 22. A few days later, Grace and Morgan decided to throw their first party of the term. It was more of a casual get-together than any kind of blowout,though. They just invited their brothers and Simba over to hang with them."Whos she?" Nick asked, gesturing to where Anna was dancing with herself."Oh, thats Anna," Grace said. "Doesnt she look familiar? Have you ever seen her before?""Never," Nick shrugged. "But she does look an awful lot like you. Except for the hair. That hair is awesomesauce!"Something at the back of Graces mind tugged at her, but she ignored it for the time being, intent on visiting with her brothers.
  23. 23. Besides, any musings were cut short by the acrid smell of smoke, and the sight of five-foot-high flames bursting from the stove!"Oops!" the cafeteria guy shrugged sheepishly as the overhead sprinklers came on. "Must have gotten distracted."All in all, the party was pretty good, despite its dismal ending. Nobody was in the mood to continue after getting sprayed down by the sprinkers -the effect was particularly bad when you consider that everyone also had a layer of soot on them. As it was getting late anyway, the brotherspacked up and went home, and the girls showered and went to bed.
  24. 24. "Hello Grandfather! Yes. Yes. Mm-hmm. No, I dont think shes recognized me yet. I mean, she says she thinks she knows me from somewhere,but I dont think shes figured out where. Yes, Ill be careful. I promise not to bring home too many strange boys. Yes. No! I love you too. Bye!"
  25. 25. Despite Annas protestations to the contrary, she did indeed bring home several strange boys, as she put it, though Prof. Blazej didnt really countas a boy. Anna didnt pursue the relationship, though. She was just trying to up her grades."Shows initiative," Grace said approvingly as she and Morgan tried not to eavesdrop from the cafeteria. "I really like Anna, Morgan. Im glad shegot assigned to this dorm with us. I just wish I could figure out why she looks so familiar!""Again, I say, look in the mirror," Morgan said with exasperation, but Grace wasnt paying attention anymore. "Anyway, she shouldnt be datingthe professor. Couldnt he get fired if hes not careful?""Meh," Grace shrugged. "We should study instead of spying, Morgan. Finals are tomorrow, and then we have to pack. I doubt well even see Annaaround much once youve moved in with Pierce and Im at Arravast. Heck, I doubt well even see much of each other!"
  26. 26. Rewinding a few weeks, we find ourselves at the small cottage that the boys rented from the campus housing co-op,"So, what should we do first now that were settled in?" Will asked his twin excitedly. "Give ourselves a tour of the campus? Scout for babes--orguys in your case? Play video games? Call mom and dad?"So many decisions."I cant decide. Lets see what Pierce is up to."
  27. 27. Pierce got right into studying, which surprised his cousins."What?" he said when they cornered him. "Ive got plans for some rockin parties later in the term, and I cant do that if I still have to study. Geez!""Nah, I bet youre just wanting to get it out of the way so you can hang out with Rani," Nick teased. "Just do us all a favor and hang a sock on yourdoorknob when shes over, okay? None of us want to walk in on any unwelcome surprises.""Speak for yourself, bro," said Will."Yeah, yeah," Pierce said dismissively. "Havent you two got some havoc to be raising somewhere?"
  28. 28. In the end, the brothers decided that what the really should do first is eat."Were still growing," Will said, chopping some peppers for chilli."We do need to keep up our strength," Nick agreed, as he fried a hamburger.
  29. 29. A few days later, and all three Buccaneer Boys were ahead of their class work and eager for some hardcore videogaming."This is so sweet," Pierce said enthusiastically. "Im gonna waste you, Will!""Right," Will smirked. "Youre going down, Pierce!""Loser has to clean up after tomorrows party!""Youre on!"
  30. 30. "Hey Simba, how about we head upstairs and give ourselves a tour of the bedrooms?" Grace asked several hours later at the aforementioned party."Have I mentioned that I think youre kind of cute?"Simba gave her a look of pure surprise."Geez, Grace, coming on a little strong, arent you?"
  31. 31. "A girl has needs," Grace said, blushing furiously. "And youre the best-looking guy Ive met since arriving in Paris, Simba. You cant blame a girlfor trying.""Next time, I suggest checking to make sure your target isnt already engaged," Simba said, shaking his head. He extricated himself as gracefully ashe could, much to Graces relief."Tough luck, cuz," Morgan said sympathetically. "I could have told you that he was getting married, you know. Didnt you see hes wearing aring?""Well yeah, I can see that now," Grace said, blushing furiously. "Thats it, Morg. This is the last time Im playing with the bubble blower at aparty.""Probably a good philosophy," Morgan said.
  32. 32. "You two look so cute together," Nick said to Pierce and Rani as the other before we even got here."three of them watched the university football game on TV. "Yeah, but you are kind of related a bit," Nick said. "Doesnt that"Thanks," Rani said with a smile. "Hey, are you dating anyone, squick you out just a little?"Nick?" "Not really," Rani shrugged. "My DNA has been so messed around"Nah, I havent met that special someone yet," Nick said. "But thats with by my grandfather, I doubt I have any genetics in common withwhat college is for, right? Finding your future spouse?" Pierce at all.""Seems like it for sixty or so percent of the population that goes to "Good point," Nick conceded.college," Pierce said. "Rani and I just got lucky in that we found each
  33. 33. After the party ended, the guys slouched into the kitchen to grab a small snack."Can you believe first term is almost over?" Pierce mused as he munched his meat. "I mean, you and Will are moving out and Morg is moving inday after tomorrow! Crazy!""You guys are coming to the big Arravast toga party, right? On moving day, I mean.""Wouldnt miss it," Pierce grinned. "You know Im a card-carrying Greek, dude. Maybe we can finally convince Morgan to join, too.""Shed better," Will said. "It wouldnt seem right if we didnt all join, even though you guys arent going to move in. Weve always all done stufftogether."
  34. 34. Nobody was happier when second term started and the Buccaneers moved into Arravast House than Simba. Hed put his life on hold for a longtime, waiting for them to grow up so he could move back home and marry his sweetheart. His graduation was such a momentous occasion, evenEddie and Tosha made the long trip for the ceremony and after-party.
  35. 35. The Buccaneers even got to meet Simbas fiancée, Artemis, though "Dude, you have a really hot fiancée," Will said appreciatively,Morgan seemed much more concerned with getting every note right eyeing Artemis. "Even if she is blue."on Simbas old piano. "Just keep your hands off her," Simba growled."Time to get off of that, Morgan," Simba called over his shoulder."Im taking it back with me." "Ooh, I love it when you go tiger on me," Artemis giggled."Nuts. Do I hafta?" "Okay, this has definitely crossed the line to weird," Will said, and walked over to the kitchen.
  36. 36. To everyones surprise, Anna had also been approved by the university to move out of dorm and into Arravast."Thats just weird," Grace said. "Not that Im not happy to have you here, Anna, though Im still trying to figure out where I know you from. Itsjust that usually only family is allowed to move in. There have been a few exceptions, though.""Ill be glad to hear all about it once my term paper is finished," Anna said, and bent to her keyboard with a faint smile.
  37. 37. In the living room, Simba was making his final farewell to the house where hed lived in what felt like suspended animation for so long. But at lasthe could delay no longer, the cab pulled up, and he took off.The Buccaneers and Anna hardly even noticed.
  38. 38. "Yeah, its time for you to leave now too," Grace said to the cow mascot. He hadnt left after the party when the rest of the guests did, and now itwas getting late. "The partys over! Moo! Go home!""Moo you too," the cow said rudely, and flounced off, its udder bouncing."Stupid mascots," Grace complained. "Im so glad theyre almost extinct back home."
  39. 39. "At last," Grace said, once she, her brothers, and Anna had the house to themselves. "Now, lets redecorate this place! These rooms are way toobland."
  40. 40. A frenzied period of time later, everyone was settled in.Nick opted not to change the decor in his room much. It was decorated in cats and dogs, and he was an animal lover, so he was happy with it theway it was. He did move Fuzzbutt, Arravasts womrat mascot, into his room, but that was the only change he made.Grace probably made the most extensive changes to her room. When she was done, it definitely screamed decadent. Not to mention expensive."And I managed to do it all with daddys money, not mine," she crowed gleefully. "All is right with the world."
  41. 41. Annas room gave off more of a red light district vibe."Annas Romance?" Nick asked Will in an undertone."Looks like it," Will replied in kind."No dating within the house," Nick reminded his twin."Ew!" Will exclained. "Geez, Nick, havent you noticed how much Anna looks like Grace? It would just be ... wrong."
  42. 42. And Will, the future sports star, set up his room in a way that more than reflected his unique personality.
  43. 43. "Now that were all moved in, what do you want to do?" Nick asked his sister as they chowed down on pizza. Nobody in the house really likedcooking.
  44. 44. The main reason they didnt like cooking was because it often necessitated a visit from the local fire department. They might have eight cookingpoints, but it didnt show."I think we should corner Anna so I can finally figure out where I know her from," Grace said.
  45. 45. "Sounds like a plan," Nick shrugged. "Especially since we have no money for a toga party this term since we had to pay off the fire crew so theywouldnt report us to the university. I think they all work for Uncle Jack..."
  46. 46. "Meh, lets throw a party and Morgan and I can corner her together," Grace "Wait -- that was you?" Morgan asked, her jaw dropping.said. "Hosting Morgan and Pierce is cheap. They dont actually expect to beentertained or fed." "Dream friend?" Nick asked, staring from one to the other with a complete lack of comprehension.So they did. "Why didnt you just tell her?" Morgan demanded, ignoring Nicks"All right, Anna," Morgan said once she and Nick had cornered the girl at comment. "Well, one things for sure. Get yourself into the kitchen and talkthe pool table. "Nows the time to spill it. How does Grace know you?" to Grace, mmkay?""Isnt it obvious?" Anna said, sounding exasperated. "Ive been waiting for "Fine. Right after I make this shot." Anna lined up the cue and sent all theher to figure it out since last term. Didnt she ever tell you about her dream balls caroming into the pockets. "I win."friend?" Nick stared as Anna left the table. "Howd she do that?"
  47. 47. "How come I didnt realize it sooner?" Grace asked Anna later that "Are you as lost as I am?" Will asked his twin.evening, after the party was over. "I used to live for your visits!" "Completely," Nick said. He picked up a pillow and whacked his"Yeah, but its been a while since I did visit," Anna shrugged. She sister over the head with it. "Come on, Grace, out with it."fixed herself a drink and sat down at the bar with Will. "I dont blameyou for forgetting, but still... you did swear wed always be best "Yeah," Will chimed in. "Or well start--"friends, Grace." "--finishing each others--""Well, we are, arent we?" Grace grinned, setting down her emptyglass. "Why didnt you tell me?" "--sentences again!" the brothers chimed in unison."Wanted to see if youd guess," Anna said. "I guess it took a bit "Ack!" Grace said, dodging the pillow and sneezing from the featherslonger than I was expecting." flying through the air. "Fine! But only if you promise to stop talking like that!"
  48. 48. The tale was only about half told when they heard a coughing noise "Who are you calling scurvy?" Will demanded. "I eat orangescoming from the hallway. regular!""What the heck is that?" Anna asked, shuddering. "It sounds like its "This is just way too creepy," Anna said, backing away.coming from ... that bear!" "Arr! Avast! Ye be me own blood too, missie, so dont be so quick to"Oh, thats just Grandpa Jack," Nick said, bending to pick up the judge, savvy?" Captain Jack crowed.stuffed animal. "What?" Anna gasped."Arr! Tis about time ye remembered t pay yer respects, ye lot oscurvy dogs!" the bear howled. "What?!?" the other three echoed.
  49. 49. A few days later, Nick was still pondering over Jacks words as he stopped by to visit some of his cousins. Hed looked up the family directory andhadnt found anyone named Susanna or Anna, so he wanted to ask some of the more distant branches of the family if theyd heard of her."Nope, I have no idea who youre talking about," a half-alien named Green said. "Im an only child, so shes not my sister. And shes not my cousineither - definitely not a Toyonaga.""Weird," Nick said."Youre cute when you ponder," Green said."Hmm?" Nick looked up and realized that Green was eyeing him speculatively. He blushed.
  50. 50. Lets just say that Nicks inquiries were the start of a beautiful relationship, though he quite forgot why hed stopped by to visit in the first place.
  51. 51. "Grace, I met the most amazing guy last night," Nick gushed the next afternoon. "Ive invited him over so you can all meet him. I think hes aToyonaga, so hes distant family, but its like four generations removed so its okay.""Well, I cant wait to meet him," Grace said. "And hey, if he turns out to be a creep we can always feed him to the cow plant.""Grace!""What?"
  52. 52. Green arrived right on time and soon had won over the full approval "Youd know all about it if you ever bothered to visit my Commodoreof Arravasts resident Buccaneers. Bear when I was a kid," Green said. "Face it, Grandpa Jack, your familys getting too big for even you to keep track of.""Grace, lassie, this scurvy seadog is green!" "Aye, tis sad it is. Arrr! But tis kind of creepy that all me progeny be"Hes half-alien, Grandpa Jack." hooking up with each other, yken?""In me own day, there werent no such thing as half-aliens, til Other- "Thats because youre an old guy, Captain."Alan went and got hisself probed," the bear muttered. "That whathappened to you, mate?" "Who ye be callin old, ye lubber?"
  53. 53. Grace was leading her class and beginning to despair of ever finding a rich husband among all the guys on campus. Half of them were related toher, and she wasnt up for dating a distant cousin if she could help it, so she turned to the matchmaker."I heard about this family," the gypsy muttered. "Always short-changing. Whatll it be this time? Pebbles? Dog bones? Old socks?""Please," Grace said imperiously. "Ill take the $5000 special. Nothing but the best for me.""You sure you dont want that one behind me?" the gypsy asked. "Half price for distant cousins.""Gavins here to visit my roommate," Grace said. "Im not into sloppy seconds. Now deliver that prime date! Please."
  54. 54. A few seconds later, there was a thud as Graces date plummeted to the earth."I cant date him!" Grace protested. "Thats a professor! Its kind of against the university code!""You want your best match, you got your best match," the matchmaker said, shining her crystal ball. "No refunds or exchanges. Bye!""Well, I suppose theres no harm in finishing up the date," Grace said, turning to her companion. "Im Grace Buccaneer.""Lee Kimbrell."
  55. 55. Its too bad hes a professor, Grace thought to herself as she ushered Lee into the house. Hes cute. And I bet hes got lots of money.As it turned out, the date ended up going really well. Grace and Lee had a lot in common and could talk about just about anything."Hey, want to dance?" Grace asked, noticing that her brother and Green had turned on the radio.Before long, she and Lee were swaying in each others arms. They didnt even notice Nick and Green making out on the other side of the room.
  56. 56. "Grace, I had a really good time," Lee said as the date drew to a close. He kissed her softly on the lips. "Id like to see you again, if thats okay withyou. Youre definitely worth more than a million bucks."
  57. 57. Graces response to this idea was rather..."How embarrassing," Nick said, cringing. He was joined in his embarrassment by his boyfriend and the cheerleader whod stopped by to visit."Lalala Im in the den watching TV and completely ignoring the wanton displays of public affection!" Will called."Ill call you," Lee said, finally pulling out of Graces embrace."Youd better," Grace grinned.
  58. 58. Lee couldnt resist going in for one last embrace."I really hope I dont lose my job over this but Im going to keep seeing you as long as you want to see me," he added as he finally took his leave."I like money too," Grace said. "But I think I like you better.""Ditto!""You guys are so embarrassing," Nick complained after the door had shut behind both Lee and Green. "PDAs and then nerdism. Geez!"
  59. 59. A few nights later, the household was awoken by the sound of their burglar alarm going off.
  60. 60. Fortunately, the police department was quick to respond. Grace, Nick, and Will were surprised to see that the responder was none other than DemiLove, of their own local law enforcement."Must be some sort of officer exchange program," Nick shrugged.
  61. 61. Demi rushed to confront the burglar."Hands where I can see em!"
  62. 62. "Youll never take me alive!" the criminal cried in a thick French accent.Demi tackled her.
  63. 63. Unfortunately, the law was not victorious."Man, Im never going to live this down if Ramin or Dorian find out about it," Demi sulked as she got back into her cruiser. "Maybe I should justgive up and start buying them Starbucks so I can finally get promoted..."
  64. 64. Just down the road, Pierce and Morgan were settling in as "Im in town for a teaching conference," Bart shrugged. "Thought Idroommates. Morgan spent most of her time studying, and Pierce pop by for a visit." He looked around at the small house. "Nice place.spent most of his time (when he wasnt with Rani) either working on Not as nice as Arravast, but a lot less crowded."his best-selling novel or painting his latest masterpiece. Neither ofthem remembered to keep in touch with their parents, so they were "Thats what we thought," Pierce said. "How long can you stay?"very surprised when Bart showed up on their doorstep late oneevening. "Just a few hours," Bart said, regret in his voice. "Im stuck in the conference all day tomorrow and then I fly back to the island"Dad!" Pierce said, catching sight of his father. "What are you doing tomorrow night. But I couldnt visit Paris without visiting you two."here?" "Id better call Morgan then, huh?"
  65. 65. At the sight of her father, Morgan launched herself across the room."Daddy!" she squealed. The two of them had always been close. A "Its just that theres a Susanna living in Arravast right now," Morganfew moments of confusing babble ensued before Morgan was said. "And Grandpa Jack said shes a relative of some sort, but Isatisfied that her father really was there and she wasnt hallucinating. havent been able to find her in the family tree anywhere!""Sit down and Ill heat up some leftover spaghetti for you, if Pierce "Impossible," Bart breathed. "It has to be a coincidence. Susannashasnt eaten it all," Morgan continued. As she puttered around the dead..."kitchen, a thought occurred to her. "Daddy... have you ever known ofa family member named Susanna?" "You mean there really is a Susanna?" Morgan asked, eyes wide. "I thought Grandpa Jack was wrong!""Wh-where did you hear that name?" Bart asked, his face turningpale under his beard. "There was a Susanna," Bart said slowly. "But..."
  66. 66. The next day, Grace, Anna, Nick, and Will stopped by to hang out with their myself. But my dad was in town last night and he was the one who told me.favorite cousins. As soon as they arrived, Morgan grabbed Grace. "I need to Did your parents ever tell you that they had another kid?"talk to you upstairs. Alone." "Wh-what?"The girls walked upstairs in silence. "Whats up?" Grace asked once Morganhad shut the bedroom door. "Youre the younger of a pair of twins," Morgan said. "Everyone always thought your older sister, Susanna, died when she was a toddler. Everyone"Its about Anna," Morgan said, taking a deep breath. "Ive found out how was asleep with the Grim Reaper came. All they ever found was her grave."shes related." "Thats... bizarre," Grace said. "Do you think that Anna is my--""Oh?" "Your sister? I do," Morgan said. "More than that, I think youre identical"Grace, you are not going to believe this," Morgan said. "I didnt believe it twins."
  67. 67. It was too much for Grace to take in, so she called downstairs for Nick and Will to join them, leaving Pierce to break the news to Anna."Youre serious," Will said once Morgan had laid out her theory for them. "Annas our older sister?""Just look at her!" Morgan insisted. "Shes Graces doppelganger! Well, except for the hair.""She has hair like our dad," Nick said. "I heard our dad talking to yours about it once, Morg. He said it meant he was marked by Death.""Anna once told me she lived in Deaths realm," Grace said slowly. "Guys, I think I need to go and talk to Anna now.""Nick, my brother, I think we should probably take off for a bit," Will said."I agree, Will, my brother," Nick said. "Come on, Morgan. Lets grab Pierce and go pick up a pizza."
  68. 68. When everyone came back, Grace and Susanna were sitting on thecouch, chatting easily. "Memory is strange," Morgan said, standing up again. "Anna, do you remember anything before you went to live with your Grandfather?""Well?" Morgan said, plunking herself down between them. "Whatsthe consensus?" "A little," Anna said. "Grace and I were talking about that. I remember a smiling face with white and black braids around it. AndAnna stood up and started pacing the room. "It makes sense," she a big black dog."said finally. "It explains so much." "Pearl!" Nick said, walking into the room and sitting down in the"I... remember," Grace said slowly. "As soon as I sat down to talk to spot Anna had vacated. "You really remember her? She was a goodAnna, I remembered that I used to have a playmate... a long time ago. dog."Its almost a dream. And... I remember Death coming for my sister.Why didnt I remember this before?" "She liked to lick my face," Anna said with a ghost of a smile.
  69. 69. "So its all figured out," Pierce said a few days later to Rani. "It seems my cousins have discovered their long-lost sister.""Thats really cool," Rani agreed. "I wouldnt mind a long-lost sibling. Rajahs a bit of a twit."
  70. 70. The term ended, time passed, and Grace and Anna tentatively explored their memories. They began spending a lot of time together, and soon had acloseness that rivalled the one shared by Nick and Will."I always knew I had some connection to you," Anna said one brisk winter day. "Otherwise I wouldnt have been drawn to your dreams and youwouldnt have been able to step into my world. But I had no idea that you were my sister.""Its pretty cool," Grace said. She fell silent for a moment and chewed her pizza thoughtfully. "Anna... would you like to meet my -- our --parents?"
  71. 71. "Would I?!?" Annas voice was shrill with surprise. "Do you think thats a good idea? I mean, they think I died. They came to terms with that yearsago... or maybe they didnt, considering you say they never mentioned me. Maybe it would just reopen a lot of old wounds.""But youre alive!" Grace said. "How can anything bad come of that?""Well... let me think about it," Anna said slowly.
  72. 72. A few weeks later, Grace sat down at her computer.Dear Mom and Dad,How are you doing? Nick, Will and I are doing fine. Pierce and Morgan send their love too. Anyway, the boys and I were thinking we really missyou. If you have the time, would you like to come and visit us? We have some people we want to introduce you to. Nick and I are both in prettyserious relationships..."Are you sure you dont want me to tell them about you ahead of time?" Grace said."Yeah," Anna said. "Just get them here and well figure out... something."Grace shrugged and clicked send.
  73. 73. Roche, Marie, and Pao made arrangements to come and visit in a few weeks. When Anna heard their plans, she moved into super-romance mode.Less than half an hour after Grace told her of their parents itinerary, she invited Gavin Biggs over."Hey Anna, whats up?" Gavin asked.In response, Susanna tackled him. "Mmphmmm!"
  74. 74. "I dunno whats come over you," Gavin gasped once they were inside, "but I like it!""Im just a woman with needs," Anna said.
  75. 75. Anna wasnt the only one with needs. Before long, Grace and Prof. Lee showed up, obviously intent on continuing a date begun elsewhere."Ack! Why must people insist on being affectionate in front of other people?" Anna asked with a grimace. "Cmon, Gav, lets play some pool andhopefully theyll go away."
  76. 76. "Lets go into my room, Lee," Grace said when she finally became "I-- geez, this is hard to say. Ive never said it to anyone else beforeaware of the dark looks Anna was shooting in her direction. "I think and meant it. I ... love you, Grace."Anna wants some privacy." "You do?""Very nice," Lee said appreciatively when he saw how nicelyfurnished Graces room was. "You have expensive tastes, Grace." "I do, and I want to spend the rest of my life with you, Grace," Lee went on, his voice getting stronger."Thank you," Grace said. "Im glad you approve." "I love you too," Grace said hesitantly. "But what about your job?""About that..." Lee began, then trailed off. "Finances and stuff are pretty important," Lee said. "But I think Id be"Yes?" a fool to walk away from a relationship like this."
  77. 77. "Some things are worth more than money."
  78. 78. "Were going to have to hide our relationship until you graduate," other very often until youre ready to move back home, Grace. ThatLee said a few hours later. "I mean, your brothers can know, but it way I can keep working until then."cant go further than that." "That makes sense," Grace said slowly. "I dont like it, but itll help"My brothers and my sister," Grace said. us financially in the long run, and thats important too. Ill wait for you, Lee.""Sister?" "And Ill try to sneak over as often as I can," Lee smiled. He reached"Anna," Grace said. "Its a long story -- Ill tell you later." for his clothes. "Id better head back home now, but Ill call you later.""About that," Lee said. "I think we should probably not see each
  79. 79. After a protracted goodbye kiss, Lee left and Grace got dressed.I wonder how Annas date with Gavin went?
  80. 80. As it turned out, Annas date with Gavin went extremely well.
  81. 81. "So todays the big day," Nick said on a bright morning over "Thats a good thing," Grace said.pancakes. "Mom, dad, and grandpa will be here after lunch. Are younervous, Anna?" "In fact it can be--"Anna poked her pancake with her fork. "What do you think?" "--downright nauseating," the twins continued, then burst into laughter."Ah, theyre not so bad," Nick shrugged. "Are they always this annoying?" Anna asked."Who, mom and dad?" Will asked, walking into the kitchen to jointhem. "A bit lovey dovey though." "Usually theyre worse," Grace said.
  82. 82. "I like what youve done with the place," Roche said approvingly when Nick ushered him, Marie, and Pao into the den. "When I lived here this wasall one big open space.""I remember that," Marie said. "Its much nicer now.""Interesting decor," Pao said. "Youre right, this place is much nicer than the house that stood here when your grandmother attended university.""You knew Grandma Ivy in university?" Nick asked."Everyone knew Ivy in university," Pao said, chuckling fondly. "Some better than others. She was a Romance sim, after all.""Changing the subject!" Nick said hurriedly. "Anyway, Lee and Green should be here soon..."
  83. 83. "Grace and Will are in class too," Nick continued."Wait," Roche said, seeing a figure stride into the doorway. "Whos--"
  84. 84. He jumped up from his chair. "No! Its impossible!" he cried.
  85. 85. Marie took one look at Anna and burst into tears. "Is this some kind of sick joke?" she shrieked.Grabbing her coat and purse, she fled.
  86. 86. Pao was the only one who reacted well. "This is... wonderful," Pao said slowly. "We thought you were dead, child!""You look like Grace, but youre not her, are you?" "Adopted by Death, actually," Susanna said, smiling tremulously."Nope." "Hence the hair. Marked by Death and all.""Susanna?" "Im so glad youve come back to us, child," Pao said, drawing Anna in for an embrace. "You look so much like your sister! Were going"Bingo." to have to have a long sit-down later, but for now I think your father is dying to talk to you."
  87. 87. "Come here," Roche said, scrubbing at his eyes. He wrapped Anna in a huge bear hug. "Can you ever forgive me?""Ill just go and find Marie," Pao said. "I think the two of you need to spend some time catching up. Marie will come around, too. Dont worryabout that, Susanna.""Call me Anna," Susanna said, smiling through happy tears. She turned to Roche. "What did you mean, forgive you?""I travelled to Deaths realm," Roche said once Pao had left. "I promised him my firstborn in exchange for lifting a curse. I didnt want to, but hesaid that was the price! And now weve lost so many years. Im sorry, Susanna.""Im sorry weve lost the years, but you had to do it," Anna said. "I forgive you... Father."
  88. 88. By the time Grace returned from class, Roche and Anna were chatting happily with each other."Wheres mom?" she asked."It was a bit much for her to take in at once," Roche said. He glared at his younger daughter. "Why didnt you warn us, Grace?""Um, I do have to say that was my fault," Anna said hesitantly. "I was nervous about meeting you, Father."Roche thought about that for a moment. "I guess I can see where youre coming from," he said. "Id be nervous too. When I go back to the hoteltonight Ill smooth things over with your mother."
  89. 89. They chatted for a while longer, until their sentences began to be punctuated by larger and larger yawns and silences."I suppose I should be going," Roche said. "But your mother and I will be in town for a few more days. Well stop by again tomorrow once Mariehas had time to compose herself.""That sounds great," Anna said.Roche embraced both of his girls and left.
  90. 90. The next afternoon, Will was out for a walk and ran into Marie."What are you doing here, Mom?" he asked in surprise. "I would have thought youd be visiting with Anna as much as you can!""Its all a bit much for me to take in at once," Marie said. "I was taking a bit of a breather. What do you think of Anna, Will?""I really like her," Will said. "Actually, she reminds me a lot of you and Grandma Ivy, in some ways.""Im glad to hear that shes getting along with you," Marie said with a sad smile. "I wish shed had a chance to grow up with you.""Dad had to do the right thing for the family," Will said, shrugging. "It doesnt sound like he had much of a choice."
  91. 91. "No, he didnt," Marie said. "It took me a long time to realize that, but he did do the right thing.""Anyway, we have Anna now," Will said."There is that," Marie said. She suddenly turned to her son and gave him a hug. "Come on, Will. Lets head back to your place."
  92. 92. "Well, that went much better than I thought it would, honestly," Anna said a few days later once theyd bid their parents and grandfather farewell."Once they got over the initial shock, they seemed pretty happy," Nick agreed, taking a sip of his drink."I wonder if they realized that they never did get a chance to meet Lee or Green?" Will mused."Somehow, I dont think they minded," Grace smiled. "Welcome to the family, Anna."
  93. 93. Pierce decided to take a break from his usual mass production of masterpiece paintings and spend some time working on a portrait of Rani."Very nice," Morgan said approvingly. "Im glad youve found someone who makes you so happy. I kind of wish I could find someone special,actually.""Aww," Pierce put down his brush and palette for a minute to give his sister a quick hug. "Just be patient, Morgan. The right person will comealong.""You think?""Of course. Everyone does eventually."
  94. 94. Morgan sighed and grabbed the stack of bill payments from the counter. "Whatever you say, bro," she called as she headed out the front door."Good morning!" an attractive black-haired girl called, waving as she walked past Morgan."Hi," Morgan said absently, stuffing the envelopes in the mailbox. She looked up and smiled."Im Kelly," the girl added, stopping and sticking out her hand. Morgan automatically reached out and shook it.
  95. 95. A few days later, Kelly stopped by again, and she and Morgan chatted again. A few days after that, it repeated, until Kelly was walking past everyday and Morgan was waiting for her eagerly on the front step."This is getting ridiculous," Morgan said after several weeks of this had passed. "Look, Kelly, why dont you come in? Its a bit cold out there."
  96. 96. "Thought youd never ask," Kelly grinned.
  97. 97. "So this is the infamous Kelly Ive been hearing about for the past six weeks," Pierce said when Morgan introduced them. He looked at his sister."Morgan, I think its time to institute the sock rule..."
  98. 98. "Morgans got a girlfriend? Thanks for tellin me, Grandpa Jack! I cant wait to tell mom and dad!" Rose giggled. "Im gonna tease Morgan so badwhen I see her! Can you tell her that I miss her an Pierce?""Arr! Do ye think Im naught more than a messenger, lassie?""No, youre good for cuddling too!" Rose grinned."Ack! Ye scurvy younglin! I are serious bear! I mean Captain! Arrr!"Roses response was to cuddle the bear. Then she sat on him for a bit. And then she put him away.
  99. 99. "Arent you excited to be a teenager, Gertie?" Rose asked the next day. It was a snow day, and the girls didnt have to go to school. "Once wereteens, then we can go to college! And then we can hang out with Morgan and Pierce and Grace and Will an Nick again!""And Anna," Gertie said. "Harder, Rose! I wanna fly!""Oh yeah," Rose said, shoving the swing mightily. "I forgot you have a new sister. When do they come to visit?""For my birthday," Gertie said. "The day after yours."
  100. 100. "Im super duper excited!" Rose giggled. "Ive never heard ofsomeone getting a new sister thats older than them, and I looked all "Are!"the way through Morgans Junior Encyclopedia to make sure." "Are!""Youre a nerd, Rose," Gertie said, hopping off of the swing. "Not!""Am not!" Rose cried, scooping up a handful of snow and flinging itat Gertie. "Haha! I made you say Im not a nerd!" Rose crowed."Are too!" "No fair!" Gertie said. She pouted, then scooped up a handful of snow and flung it at her cousin. A glorious snowball fight ensued"Not!" until Bart called them in.
  101. 101. "Cookies!" Rose crowed with delight. She and Gertie plunked themselves down at the table and dug in."Whoa, slow down kid," Bart said as Rose gobbled her cookie down. "You only get one - its dinner time soon and then your birthday cake.""Too late!" Rose giggled. She got up and stuck her plate in the dishwasher. "Daddy, you make good cookies.""But why are they Santa cookies?" Gertie asked. "Christmas was ages ago!""Thats easy," Bart said. "I only have one cookie cutter."
  102. 102. After dinner, as promised, it was time for Rose to blow out her birthday candles."Make a wish, honey!" De called encouragingly."I wish... to be a doctor when I grow up!"
  103. 103. Rose definitely grew up well in a cute, if slightly old-fashioned, outfit. She promptly went upstairs and streaked her hair with blond to show thatshe could be cool, too.
  104. 104. The next morning was the morning of Gerties birthday. She got up early to play before school, since everything would be way too busy when shegot home in the afternoon."And the giant rocket heads straight for Pirate Island! But Alan an Shannon are there to stop it! They fly it to the moon where it explodes withouthurting anybody. Its a good thing Pirate Island has its own superheroes to save the day!"
  105. 105. No, Gertie, the podium is not a toy.
  106. 106. "Hello? Oh, hi Rose! Yep, theyre at the airport now! It stinks that your brother and sister couldnt come for my birthday but I guess its kind ofexpensive. I get to have my brothers and sisters here because Im the heiress, so every one of my birthdays is a big deal."
  107. 107. "Are you ready, kiddo?" Roche asked once Gertie had hung up the phone. "Your siblings should be here any minute!""Im so excited, Daddy!" Gertie crowed. "Whats Anna like? Is she nice? Is she pretty?""She looks just like Grace except her hair is coloured like mine," Roche said as he held his hands out for Red Hands."Cool!" Gertie exclaimed. "I wish I was an identical twin! Then I could have vacations from being the heiress.""Dont you want to be heiress?" Roche asked."I do," Gertie said. "But it would be nice if the job came with a vacation package."
  108. 108. "You came! You really came!" Gertie cried gleefully when her house, and the legacy succession rules say that people who move out,siblings strode through the door. "I cant believe youre really here! except for college, cant move back in."Come see the new TV we got!" And she took off into the living roomat a run. "Thats a relief," Anna said. "If anything happens to Gertie, you or Will can be backup.""Thats Gertie, huh?" Anna asked Grace in an undertone. "Yeah, Nicks dating a relative," Grace said. "That definitely"Yup, our little sister," Grace said. "Shes a good kid, and the heiress, disqualifies him."so the pressure is off of us." "Who makes these rules, anyway?""Oh, good," Anna said. "Im definitely never having kids." "Dunno," said Grace. "Ive never really thought about it. Maybe we"Youre disqualified anyway," Grace said. "You didnt live in the could ask Morgan when we get back."
  109. 109. "Thats a great new TV," Nick said. "Excited to finally be a teenager, Gertie?""Super duper excited!" Gertie giggled. "Im gonna be at university before you know it, Nick. Do you have lots of friends there?""Yeah, I think were all pretty popular," Nick said. "But dont worry about making friends, kiddo. All you have to do is be yourself and itll happennaturally.""Thats good," Gertie said. She sniffed the air. "I can smell cake and candles! Cmon, Nick! Time for me to grow up!"
  110. 110. While Gertie was off talking to her big brother, the rest of the party guests had arrived."Are you all here just for me?""Were here to watch you blow out the candles!" Will cried. "Cmon, junior! Get to it!"
  111. 111. "Wow!" Gertie said, experimentally running her hands down her new form. "That wasnt what I was expecting. Okay everyone, tell me the truth -how do I look?""Youre beautiful, dear," Marie said proudly. "Have some cake."
  112. 112. Gertie and Rose had their cake, then headed outside where they could chat without any of the grownups overhearing."Well?" Gertie asked, twirling. "Whats the verdict?""Can you help me with this snowman?" Rose asked."Rose!""You look very nice," Rose said, grinning. "Youre going to be the most popular girl in high school.""Good," Gertie said with satisfaction. She patted the snow into place.
  113. 113. "Actually," Rose said. "Youre already popular, Gertie. I dont even know why youre worried.""I just want lots of friends," Gertie said. "Its important for an heiress to have a lot of friends in this world, you know? Especially on Pirate Island.We have so many duties and responsibilities, and I want to get that one out of the way while Im young. Anyone who doesnt like me can spendsome quality time with the cow plant.""Wow, I never knew you could be so bloodthirsty," Rose said, sounding vaguely impressed."Ive been spending some time with Grace," Gertie explained. "That girl is cutthroat."
  114. 114. Roche stepped out onto the porch. "Rose! Your parents are leaving!"Pao followed him, bearing Grandpa Jack with him."What is it?" Roche asked, glaring at the bear."Listen, mate, shes not gonna die," the bear said."What?""Tis all I can tell ye, savvy? Shes not going to die, mate. Shell be fine.""Whatever you say," Roche said. He turned his back on the bear and ushered Rose and Gertie into the house.
  115. 115. Once the guests had left, Gertie took over the upstairs bathroom. After monopolizing it for a few hours and trying out a bunch of different hairstyles, she decided on one she liked - a pretty updo with flowers.
  116. 116. Then she hopped onto the family computer to check her email.She had only one message.Gertie,I highly recommend you read this blog.thepirateswife.blogspot.com-- A Friend
  117. 117. Curious, Gertie clicked on the link.And read.And read.And read some more.
  118. 118. When she got to a page dated a few years earlier, she stopped in disbelief. She read it again."No," she breathed. "Its not true. Its not!""She is not Roches daughter. She cant be the heir and I dont know how to tell anyone!""Mother, how could you?" she wept.
  119. 119. She ran into her room, hastily stuffed a bag with a few things, and disappeared into the night.
  120. 120. When Roche walked into Gerties room the next morning, it was like a familiar nightmare being thrust on him once again."Gertie? Gertie!"A piece of paper lying on her pillow caught his eye.
  121. 121. "Whats wrong?" Marie asked, her face filled with worry as she walked into the bedroom."Whats wrong?!?" Roche shouted. He waved the letter in his wifes face. "This is whats wrong! How could you do this, Marie?""Do what?" Marie asked, genuinely clueless."You knew Gertie wasnt mine and yet you let her be named heiress anyway?" Roche cried. "And then you wrote about it on the internet? Shefound out, Marie! She found out and shes run away!""Shes gone?" Marie asked, her lips white. She scanned the paper. "Oh, Roche! What are we going to do?"
  122. 122. "I know what youre going to do," Roche snarled. "Ive been patient, Marie. Ive looked the other way when youve played me for the fool. Well, nomore! This is it! I want you out of the house, Marie. Were through."
  123. 123. "I--" Marie began."No excuses," Roche said. "Youve cheated on me, youve lied to me, and youve driven my daughter away from me. Im done, Marie.""I ... understand," Marie said sadly. "Give me a day, and Ill be gone."
  124. 124. "Good," Roche said. "Just be gone by the time I get back.""Back? Where are you going?"Roche turned, his face set. "Ive already experienced losing one daughter. Im not going to go through that again. Im going to go and find her."To Be Continued...