Monday, May 30, 2011

Chapter 14: Let's Spend the Night Together

As though they had made a pact not to discuss it, Jasmin and Gibson go about their day as though nothing had happened between them the night before, as though nothing had changed.

Later in the evening, after Meadow has gone to bed and Darius and Autumn have gone out, Jasmin leads Gibson into her room.

"You've been so quiet all day," she says, though she's just as guilty of silence as he's been.

"I've been expecting you to tell me last night never happened and that you don't want me to ever mention again," Gibson admits. They had been a little, maybe a lot, buzzed when they finally gave into their passion, so he wasn't sure how she felt about it, and him, the morning after.

"But it did happen, and it was great," Jasmin says, echoing the words he said to her the morning after their first kiss at Howl.

With the lingering tension finally released, Jasmin and Gibson are finally able to relax in each other's company

"I thought that the fact that you had women in your life meant you'd didn't really love me," Jasmin admits,  "But I loved you even when I was with other men. I should have known your feelings hadn't changed, just like mine hadn't."

"That's all in the past," Gibson answers, "Now we start our future."

Autumn and Darius went out dancing at Cog. The club is dead tonight and the couple have the dance floor to themselves.

Alone or in a crowd like the one that surrounded them at Howl the night before, Darius and Autumn are always too wrapped in each to notice anyone else.

"It's hard to say goodnight when we live in the same house," Darius sighs. Autumn has followed him up to his room for a last kiss goodnight.

"Maybe we don't have to say goodnight," Autumn suggests, her eyes moving over to his bed.

"That is so tempting," Darius answers quietly, "But I think not."

"No?" Autumn's voice is barely audible. It had taken all her courage to even make the suggestion, and having it rejected knocked her back a peg.

"You kill me with the sad kitten eyes," Darius sighs, "It's not that I don't want you. You know I do, I love you like crazy. I just want to wait. For our wedding night."

"Wedding?" Autumn asks, "Are you proposing to me?"

Darius laughs, "More like presumptuously assuming we had an understanding. But since it's come up, Will you marry me, Autumn?"

"As soon as we graduate," Autumn promises.

Carey doesn't outlive Roslyn by very much, and Gibson buries his father beside his mother at the Green Gates cemetery.

Jasmin's agent has been sending her out on more and more publicity gigs, have a drink at this bar, dance at this club, be seen here, be seen there. It's not what she wanted when she became a musician, but at least she now has Gibson along with her when her agent sends her out.

After she's done her time on the dance floor, and the couple is heading toward the elevator to leave, Jasmin spots a familiar face at the bar.

"That's Isabella Roth, my half-sister," she whispers, squeezing Gibson's hand. Isabella hasn't followed in her parents' footsteps at all, but has gone into politics. The child of Riverblosson Hills' two biggest celebrities and heir to the vast Roth fortune, Isabella wields incredible power and influence for one so young. "Do you think I should introduce myself?" Jasmin asks.

"Your call," Gibson answers, nervous at the thought of approaching her.

Jasmin looks around, and not seeing her father anywhere, decides against introducing herself. Foster hadn't had much contact with his older children after he married Sandra Roth, and who knows what Isabella knows or thinks about her half-siblings.

After finally getting together, Gibson and Jasmin's life has become an extended honeymoon. They can barely keep their hands off each other and can't even wait to get home to their bed, and make love in the elevator ride out of the club.


Challenge Notes:
Short update, by my update standards. I'm getting Generations tomorrow and have been holding off playing until I have it (and the major mods I use are updated for it) because I'd like to send Darius and Autumn to prom together. They don't have much teen time left, so I hope I can do that.  I'm also looking forward to using the new wedding arch and whatever else is new for weddings for their wedding, which will be that generation's Party To Remember goal party. So this will be the last update until after Twallan's mods are updated for Generations. Which should not be too long, he usually updates very quickly.

Jasmin achieved her LTW. She's currently level 8 of the music career and a 4 star celeb.

Jasmin's mother, Maya, and her husband Philip, also died not too long ago, but as Jasmin never really knew her mother, it didn't make it into the story. Their son Percy, Jasmin's half-brother, is currently dating Gibson's daughter Sherrie.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Chapter 13: Because the Night

Taryn Dodger comes by the house to hang out with Darius. She makes it very clear she's interested in being more than friends.

Darius makes it clear that he's already taken.

"Eww, you're dating the bug girl? Why? She's so weird!" Taryn says, not caring that Autumn is right there in earshot.

"Because Autumn's the only girl in town worth being with," Darius answers angrily, his temper always riled by insults to Autumn, "I think you should leave now."

"I told you it would be like this," Autumn says sadly when Taryn leaves. "You know Taryn, she's going to spread a campaign of hate against you because you rejected her."

"Yeah, I've seen schoolwide campaigns of hatred before, Autumn, and I don't care."

"Being the school pariah isn't easy, you know," Autumn sighs.

"I know. But I have you, and that's all that matters."

"I wouldn't be able to get through my day if it weren't for you," Autumn says.

Roslyn comes by to visit Gibson while he's working in his community garden. It's the last time he sees her; later that dat his father calls him to tell him his mother passed away.

Roslyn is buried in the Green Gates cemetery.

Every time she sees her daughter and Darius together, Jasmin feels a pang of regret. That could have been her and Gibson, if she hadn't been so foolish and rejected him.

Meadow becomes a child.

Darius and Autumn do their homework outside the school on Friday afternoon. They aren't going home this evening; they're heading out to Howl for a date as soon as it opens.

"You are so over the top," Darius comments on her dress.

"Over the top? Is that bad?" Autumn asks.

Darius laughs, "It's perfect. It suits you."

Gibson has been experimenting with drink recipes, and invites Jasmin to try one with him.

"Where are the kids?" she asks. The house in unusually quiet.

"Meadow is upstairs, playing. Darius and Autumn went to Howl."

"Howl," Jasmin repeats, and then falls quiet. The word evokes the same memory for both of them, their first and only kiss, the moment that defined their lives, though they didn't realize it at the time. They down their drinks in silence. "Wow, that's good, Gibson," Jasmin finally breaks the silence, "Hot tub?"

"I'm sorry I turned you away that morning," Jasmin admits as they sink into the hot, bubbly water.

"You don't need to apologize," Gibson says.

"I'm not apologizing, really. I'm sorry for myself. I've spent my whole adult life looking for someone like you, when I could have just had you from the beginning."

This is news to Gibson, he had thought she was well over him since the day she rejected him, "It's not too late, Jas," he says, putting an arm around her, "I still love you. I've always loved you." It feels so good to finally say it.

Jasmin leads her head against his shoulder, then turns her head to meet him in a kiss.

The passion they've held back for years is finally released.

After making love in the hot tub, the couple moves to Gibson's bed for more, making up for years of holding back.

Darius and Autumn return from Howl before curfew to find the house strangely quiet. No one in the house over the age of childhood goes to bed before 1am, so it's unusual for the house to be so still at 11.

"Maybe they're outside?" Autumn suggests.

"I don't think so. Listen."

Autumn listens, and hears muffled giggling coming from Gibson's door. "Oh," she gasps, "Oh. You think they're..."

Darius nods.

"Do you think they've been doing that all along?"

"If they have, they've been good about hiding it," Darius says.

"I think I could have gone on without knowing about it," Autumn laughs, "I'm not going to be able to look at my mother with a straight face tomorrow."

"We're talking about people who go around the house in their underwear. I have a hard time looking at either of them most days," Darius laughs.

Left to entertain themselves, the young couple move out to the hot tub.

"The girls at school are actually jealous of me now because of you," Autumn tells him. "They still hate me, of course. But it's a lot better to be hated out of envy than to just being despised in general."

"They're jealous of you because you are so fabulous and awesome," Darius says, "They wish they had the courage to stand out from the rest of herd. They let their fears run their lives, and you, my love, are fearless and glorious."

It's not really true, Autumn thinks, she has plenty of fears, and has often wished she could just blend in with the herd and not stand out quite so much. But instead of objecting to his point of view, she just kisses him. Whatever the truth, he makes her feel good about herself.


Challenge Notes:
So, yeah, I kind of am breaking the single with help rules. I was going to wait to finally get Jasmin and Gibson together until the heir was YA. But, it's like I had this balloon, I blew it up as far as it could take, and I was holding it, waiting to pop it. But air was starting to seep out, the balloon was losing pressure, and the more pressure was diminished, the less dramatic the pop was going to be. So, I popped it while it still had some air. It was a story vs. challenge decision, and I picked what was best for the story.

I do feel I stayed within the spirit of the rule even if I broke the letter. It was meant to keep that roll from becoming just another couple roll, and I succeeded in that. Both heir and help had all their children with other Sims, and technically they are still not a 'couple'. They've been 'romantic interests' since they were teens, and I used low level flirt interactions like 'amorous hug', 'hold hands', and 'flirt' and even a couple of 'shy kiss' through the relationship to maintain the sexual tension in the household, but they never got past the 'flirty' stage until this chapter. So now they've woohooed, but it doesn't change much in terms of the challenge. And in a few days the point will be moot when the new heir takes over.

All other generation requirements have been met. I'm really looking forward to being done with Living Green so I can buy new stuff.

Jasmin only has one guitar point to go to get her LTW.

Finally, I wanted to mention that this chapter title is named by a song by Patti Smith, Because the Night

All my chapter titles have been from song titles or lyrics, but I particularly wanted to link this one because it's such a great song, and really captures the mood of this chapter.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Chapter 12: Strange Little Girl

Darius enjoys painting above everything else. His teachers are impressed with his talent, and showered him with praise for his impressionistic eye.

Autumn is a genius, but hr teachers aren't as pleased with her. Most of the time, she's beyond their lesson plan, and finds it difficult to pay attention in class when all they have to teach is what she already knows.
Genius certainly doesn't come from her mother, so Autumn researches her father's side of the family online, and discovers a history of insanity and eccentricity in the Goolsby line which does not bode well for her future.

Stacey O'Mackey throws dirt in her hair and calls her a bug eater. Autumn does not eat bugs, she collects them, but Stacey isn't interested in her clarifications, and just continues with his taunting, until Autumn runs home in tears.

"Why do they think I eat bugs?" Autumn asks Darius, "I would never eat my pets!"

"Stacey O'Mackey is a jerk," Darius says, "Don't listen to him."

"But it's not just him. All the other kids call me bug eater, and braniac, and all kinds of names. Why?"

"Because they're stupid and you're not," Darius says.

Gibson doesn't so much help Autumn with  her homework, it's more like he listens to her explain it to him.
"The kids at school don't like me," she confesses to him, "They say I'm weird."

Gibson sighs. When he was a kid, he had to put up with taunts about his two gay dads. Until he, Parker and the adopted children of Sherlock Speeking and Aloysius Wattson, who did have two gay dads, ganged up on the others and made them stop.

"Children fear things they don't understand," he tries to explain, "And they lash out when they're afraid."

"But I'm a child, and I'm not like that," Autumn points out.

"You are smarter and more mature than the other kids your age," Gibson replies.

"Darius doesn't tease me, and he's a normal kid."

"I'm glad. I wouldn't want him behaving like that. Stick with him and he'll help you get through your schoolday."

"I'll go down there and tell your teachers about what's going in their class," Jasmin responds angrily to her daughter's complaints about the school, "I'll make them punish those bullies."

"Don't, Mom, please," Autumn protests, "That will only make things worse."

The next evening, Autumn helps Darius with his homework while she searches the galaxy through her telescope.

"Did you put that frog in Stacey O'Mackey's desk today?' she asks her only friend.

Darius smiles proudly, "Yeah that was me."

Stacey got sent to the principal's office for that, and for the rest of the day he was subject to 'frog boy' taunts from the rest of the class.

No amount of abuse from her schoolmates can keep Autumn from enjoying what she loves.

At the insistence of her agent, Jasmin recorded a commercial for the Doo Peas corporation. They paid a hefty sum for her song, but once she had the money, she felt dirty for selling out.
Gibson suggested she invest the filthy money into his pet project, a community garden he'd been saving his own money to build.

"We'll recycle your money into something wholesome for the whole community," he told her. Happy with his idea, Jasmin handed over her earnings and Gibson was finally able to buy the land and set up his garden.

Meadow becomes a toddler.

Darius' birthday is on Saturday, and Gibson throws a party for him. Jasmin's brother's and their spouses come, as well as Carey and Roslyn, and Gibson's daughter Sherrie.

Roslyn tells Darius stories about performing with Warm Gun, leaving out the parts where they played for no audience.

The family gathers for the cake.

And Darius becomes a teen.

Gibson spends some time with Sherrie. She's never been to his house before, and he tells she's always welcome to drop by for a visit.

Rory McGreggor wasn't invited, but no one is going to tell the ghostly party crasher to leave.

Darius has expanded his artistic pursuits into the third dimension and has taken on sculpting.

It's Autumn's birthday, and Darius wants to get her something special. There's nothing in the world he could purchase that would please her; a proper gift for her needs to be caught alive.

The beetle bites Darius' finger. Hard. And then escapes.

So Darius tries again, and makes a successful catch.

Autumn doesn't want a party, so it's just her mother, Gibson and Darius at her celebration.

Autumn becomes a teenager.

Darius takes Autumn over to her growing insect collection, where he's placed his catch.

"Happy Birthday," he says as he shows it to her.

"That's a Silver Spotted Skipper!" she gasps, "I don't have one of those!"

"You do now," Darius laughs, "I'm glad you like it."

"I love it!" she gasps, and hugs him.

"But I didn't get you anything. For your birthday. Yesterday."

"That's okay," Darius says, "I don't want anything."

"Except this," he adds, and kisses her, gently.

Autumn blushes and looks away.

"Was that okay?" Darius asks, hoping he didn't scare her off.

"No," she says, "That was better than okay, I think."

"I think I could do better," Darius smiles, "We'll have to practice to get it right."

"You know you'll get made fun of," Autumn warns him, "You already catch enough flak just from living in the same house as me. If they find out you've been kissing the bug eater..."

"I'll just have to get enough frogs to put in everyone's desks," Darius answers wit a laugh. "Seriously, Autumn, I don't care what anyone says, I'll kiss who I want to kiss."

Gibson comes into the room with Meadow and notices the blossoming romance. His son managed to do what he couldn't.


Challenge Notes:
The park requirement for Living Green is complete. I decided I didn't want to mess around with any of kiwi tea's parks. Even the rundown Factory Square Park is perfect the way it is without  'improvements'.
So I placed a 30x30 lot in one of the empty areas that's painted up a crop field and I dropped the community garden from Riverview in there.  That garden is 20x30 so I had room to expand it to add the required picnic tables and grill to make it a 'park', and to add some WA crops. I also added a swing set, so it's a level 2 park. I won't bring it to level three as that would require more grills and picnic tables, and I think it has enough.
The town did not have a community garden before this, so I think it does add more to the community than adding a new park or messing with the current ones.

Gibson has achieved his LTW, mastering mixology and owning a bar. I've largely given up on actual bartending. Jasmin got some high payouts on celebrity opportunities, like recording a commercial, and also some high paying painting opportunities. Since we can't buy anything, anyway, we are not starving for cash anymore.

Jasmin is two skill points away from achieving her LTW, she just needs one more each in painting and guitar. She's level 6 in the rock branch of the music career.

Darius' teen trait is savvy sculptor. (I had the sculpting thing already purchased in family inventory before we started the Living Green restriction, so I could whip it out when Darius became old enough to use it.)

Autumn's teen trait is family oriented. She is fated to have three kids, and she'll be the first in this legacy to actually marry. She already has the LTW wish to be a world renowned surgeon locked in. She rolled that as a child when her sister was born. Since that is her rolled career, I decided to go with it.