Hi, everyone. Thank you for reading my attempt at yet another Apocalypse Challenge
(created by Pinstar) using the new EP rules cooked up by the Apoca-Borg at
Boolprop.com. Hopefully, I won’t break too many!
I’ve played through various versions of the AC since it first came out, but that was just
for fun. I’ve never documented my AC play before. I’ve been inspired by a love of
zombie movies and post-apocalyptic CC to finally do one. At the same time, I get to test
drive those new rules. Wish me luck!
Meet my founder, Abandon Hope—Ban for short. He’s an Aries Popularity Sim,
5/9/6/4/1, with a LTW to make 20 best friends, easily doable with a YA. He’s
attending La Fiesta—I mean Woodsonian University—majoring in Art. Yep, he’s
going to be an artist.
Oh, did I forget to mention? I used a random number generator to set the order
of my lifts. The first two are Art and Dance. Ban will be looking for a spouse with
high creativity. But this is Ban’s story. Let’s let him tell it.
Name’s Abandon, Abandon Hope. Yeah, yeah. I know. Heard it all, so save yourself
the time. Framming parents thought sticking me with a name like that was a real
hoot. Thanks a lot, Mom and Dad. You didn’t have to go through school with it.
Anyway, call me Ban. I sure as shooting don’t answer to “Abandon.” Ugh.
Anyway, Ms. Carstairs—that’s my Honors English teacher—is having all of us
maintain a journal for the semester as part of our senior project. Eh. Not sure what
it is she expects me to write. Reckon if I put down the words like I’m talking to my
best buddy, Jake, it’ll sound alright in the end.
I live on a farm just outside of Hope’s Folly. And, yeah, the town was named for
my great-great-great-grandpa or something like that. Big deal. Only place more
boring than the Folly is home. Not much to do here ‘cepting milk cows, mow hay,
plant soybean, wheat and corn. Most exciting thing to do is tipping cows on a
Saturday evening or swiping watermelons from Old Man MacGregor’s place and
holding seed spitting contests or hot-wiring Jimmy Tupelo’s monster truck and
taking it for a spin.
…Not that I’d ever do that, Ms. Carstairs, in case you’re paying attention.
Leastways, never been caught at it.
“We expect you to show up on time for meals, Boy.”
“Sorry, Daddy, Mama. Time got away from me.”
“Don’t let it happen again. Done your chores?”
“What ‘not exactly’? You either finish the milking or you don’t.”
“Got distracted. The morning light was just right, and—”
“You were painting?”
“Well. Yeah. Look. I’ll see to them after breakfast, okay?”
“Do it now. “
“No, Sarah. Boy’s got a choice. The cows don’t.”
“Dad’s right, Mama. Full udders hurt. I’ll take care of it now. Sorry, Daddy.”
“Good man. We’ll make a farmer out of you yet.”
“….yeah. About that.”
“I don’t—I mean I’m not…not gonna be a farmer.”
“Someone’s gotta run this place. I won’t live forever.”
“Uh-oh, Banny’s in trouble~”
“Shut it, Lindsay.”
“Make me, Dork Breath.”
“We been over this a million times, Abandon. You’ll go to Sim City A&M, get your
Husbandry degree, come back here and take over.”
“No, Dad. You’ve been over it. I never agreed.”
“You don’t have to agree. Just do what’s expected of you.”
“Frammit. You never listen!”
“What was that?”
“Nothing. I’ll go take care of those cows.”
“Good. Let’s stop all this foolishness. When I was your age I wanted to be a space
pirate, but I came back home and did my duty. You’ll grow out of your little
scribbles. People change, Abandon. You’ll see. This is the place you’re meant to be.”
Little scribbles! Yeah. Not like what I want is important. It never is. Daddy has our
lives all planned out for us, and we’re just expected to go along with whatever he
decides. That was fine and dandy when I was nine, but I’ll be eighteen in two
months—a man. Daddy always told me a man makes his own way in life. Why the
hell won’t he allow that I need to make mine?
I have something way more important to do with my life than spend it in the
middle of nowhere tending cows and growing corn. I know I do. I can feel it.
“You wanted to talk to me, Mama?”
“Banny. Trust you to show up just when I take a pie out of the oven.
“I’m really not hungry.”
“I said I wasn’t hungry, Mama.”
“Since when have you ever been ‘not hungry’ for strawberry rhubarb?"
“Since Woodsonian University offered me a full ride that Daddy’ll make me turn down.”
“Ohhhh! That’s the fine arts school you have all those catalogs on. I’m so proud
of you, Abandon.”
“How did you kn– Never mind. You’re a mom. You know everything.
“Next time you don’t want me to see something, don’t hide it in your underwear
drawer. Or did you forget who puts away your laundry? Honey, you know your
father only wants what’s best for you.”
“Yeah? It sure as hell doesn’t feel like he does.”
“Language. Ban, just what sort of living could you make with your paintings? Enough
to get by on? Enough to support a family? You do want one someday, don’t you?
“I reckon? Never really thought about it.”
“You’ll always be able to take care of them with this farm. Can you say that about
“Why does everyone think I can’t make a go at this? I’m damn good, Mama! Woodsonian
wouldn’t have offered me that scholarship if I wasn’t.”
“Honey, I know you have talent—”
“I’m your mother, Abandon. I can’t help but worry about you. Doesn’t mean I
don’t have faith in you. It’s just—”
“—that you don’t have faith in me.”
“You know darn well that’s not what it means!
“You’re so all-fired set on thinking the worst of us that you’re not giving us a chance.”
“Let Lindsay have the farm. Don’t see why it has to be me.
“For one, there’s always been a Hope in charge of the farm. Lindsay won’t be a Hope
once she marries. Besides—”
“Nothing. No need to fret about it.
“Don’t do that. What?”
“Let it go, Abandon. It’d be nice if your daddy could hand over the reins and retire is all.
You know we’ve never had a vacation? Might be fun to travel while we still have the
“Jeez, you talk like you’re gonna kick the bucket. Ain’t either of you even close to fifty.
Plenty of time.”
“You’re right. Plenty of time.”
“Don’t you worry about school, Banny. I’ll have a talk with your father.”
“It won’t change anything.”
“Hush. You let me handle it. And eat your pie.”
“Yes ma’am. Uh, thanks.”
“Hey, Honey. You look down. Feeling okay?”
“Little tired. Don’t look at me like that, Sarah. I’m fine. You need to stop
worrying so much. It’s not good for you.”
“I ain’t licked yet.”
“We, Jack. We’re not licked.”
“Slave driver. Now, you didn’t come in here just to make sure I’m still alive and
kicking. My parental senses are tingling. I reckon this is about Ban.”
“So I’ve been told. He still whining about the farm?”
“Darlin’, you know I want him to be happy. If there was any other way– But there’s
not. You know what Dr. Hunkle said. There’s just not enough time. Lindsay will be
“I don’t want to talk about it. I can’t.”
“Fine. Have it your way. Ignore the elephant sitting on the rug.”
“Never mind. You wanted to talk about Ban. What’s that boy gone and done now?”
“Promise you won’t get mad.”
“Damn. More fights at school?
“Got himself arrested for joyriding?”
“Yep. Went and got himself a full scholarship to Woodsonian University.”
“Woodsonian? That’s great! I bet he was hopping with excitement. He—”
“—he can’t go.”
“Don’t jump the gun here. I’ve been thinking.”
“Why can’t he attend Woodsonian U, sow his oats, paint his little heart out and
then come back?
“’Cause it won’t be enough, Sarah. You been listening to the boy? He wants to
make it big—hell, he probably could with enough elbow grease and luck—run off
to Sim City and rub elbows with the artsy set and make something of himself. He
doesn’t want to come back here to the boonies and grow corn. I wish….”
“Hell, it don’t matter what I wish.”
“Jack…keep this up and he’ll wind up hating you.”
“Better he hate me when the time comes. It’ll be easier.”
“It won’t be easier. It’ll be a million times worse. I wish you’d never started
moonlighting at the Facility.”
“We needed the money, Sarah. Still do. At least they’re covering all the
“Because they want to study you like you’re a damn guinea pig. It’s nothing but
a bribe to keep you from blowing the whistle on them.”
Facility? Blowing the whistle?
“Joe Briggs threatened to do that. You know what happened to him.”
“They wouldn’t really…?”
“I may be willing to take that chance on myself, but it’ll be a cold day in hell before I
risk you or the kids.”
What are they talking about? Mr. Briggs got himself killed when he wrapped his car
around that big, old oak off of Route 2.
“Honey, you need to talk to him. Tell him.
“Tell him what? That I’m dying from some crazy disease the doctors haven’t
even named yet?
“He’s old enough. Tell him.”
“No. I won’t do that to him. Frammit. I should let him go off to Woodsonian. At
least then he’d be out of this mess—safe. But you and Lindsay are going to
“I know he’s wild and always getting in trouble. But this family’s important to
him. He’ll understand. Just talk to him. Before….”
Pull your act together, Abandon, and quit pitching a fit. The good lord gave
you a brain, so use it. Daddy ain’t gonna die ‘cause you ain’t gonna let him
die. You just got to think some. Gotta be something you can do—doctors.
Better doctors. No, wait. That “Facility” Mama mentioned. Think, frammit,
So I thought. And I thought me some more.
What the heck is this Facility? I thought Daddy was working nights out to
Simpson’s Elevators. That’s what him and Mama told us.
If they’re the ones who did this to him, then they’re the ones who can fix him.
Damned if I won’t make ‘em.
But will it work? Will there be enough time? I hate going at this blind. If I
don’t get this right….
Frammit. I ain’t bawled once, and I sure as hell ain’t starting now. Keep it
You should have told me, Daddy. You say I’m almost an adult and ready to
start my own life, but you hid this all away instead of counting on me to
See, I remember what you taught me. Told you I’d never forget.
“Daddy! Daddy! I caught one!”
“I knew you could do it, Banny.”
“You tol’ me if I just kept trying I could so I did over and over and over—did
you see me, Daddy?—and I just knew I wasn’t gonna catch one. Then you
said a real man don’t never give up so I didn’t. And I caught one!”
“That’s my boy. Ain’t nothing you can’t do, Abandon, long as you set your
mind to it. Don’t ever let anyone tell you different. You remember that.”
“When I grow up I wanna be just like you.”
Ain’t nothing you can’t do, Abandon, long as you set your mind to it.
Don’t ever let anyone tell you different.
So why you giving up, Daddy? I sure ain’t gonna. We’ll figure this out. You
told me I can do anything. I believed you then, and I believe you now.
I know what I have to do, Daddy. I can be strong for this family, too. You’ll
see. I’ll make you proud of me.
I hope no one minded a bit of prologue before we get down to the stinking and the starving of the real
Apocalypse. I wanted the Apocalypse to mean something to Ban, and so I made him a family in CAS in a
duplicate hood. Originally, his father was going to be a jerk, but he refused to stay that way. There’s not
much point in Ban having a family to mourn if he hated their guts. Ban himself is a CAS sim, so he is
I’d thought to write most of this in journal format. However, as I went through this bit of prologue, I
began to feel constrained by its limitations. Straight exposition or straight dialog gets old after awhile. I
imagine, I’ll go back into story teller mode for the majority of the installments.
The university years and Hopelessness will be up directly. Once again, thanks for reading. Till then,
happy simming and don’t let the zombies eat your brains.