Author Topic: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Thirty-Two (8/25/15)  (Read 14687 times)

Offline intl_incident

  • You can call me Indy! :D
  • Occult
  • ****
  • Posts: 334
Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Thirty-Two (8/25/15)
« on: October 20, 2013, 10:40:38 PM »
This is my first story on the forum, so I hope it's entertaining to at least a few of you, and that I've followed all of the rules, etc.  I will absolutely welcome any and all criticism or suggestions.  A lot of you have been doing this much longer than I have, and I'm sure I could benefit from any advice you would be willing to give.

One quick note:  by coincidence, most of the screenshots for this first installment are taken from the distance, so you don't see many faces.  I'm sure this stems in large part from the fact that I am a builder at heart, so doing a story is a very new kind of gameplay for me.  Fear not - the main characters will become more clear in the next chapter.  I'm slowly but surely letting go of my micromanaging style, and my attachment to pretty scenery.:)

Anyway -- On to the story!

---------

CHAPTER ONE - The Island (scroll down in this post)
CHAPTER TWO - Savna
CHAPTER THREE - Father
CHAPTER FOUR - Unpacking
CHAPTER FIVE - Courtyard
CHAPTER SIX - Tavern
CHAPTER SEVEN - Stable
CHAPTER EIGHT - Root
CHAPTER NINE - Boat
CHAPTER TEN - Stellan
CHAPTER ELEVEN - Dining Room
CHAPTER TWELVE - Locked Up
CHAPTER THIRTEEN - Plans
CHAPTER FOURTEEN - Escape
CHAPTER FIFTEEN - Law
CHAPTER SIXTEEN - Wedding
CHAPTER SEVENTEEN - Announcement
CHAPTER EIGHTEEN - Ajiana
CHAPTER NINETEEN - They Know
CHAPTER TWENTY - The Other Side
CHAPTER TWENTY-ONE - Market Day
CHAPTER TWENTY-TWO - Laying the Groundwork
CHAPTER TWENTY-THREE - Reunion
CHAPTER TWENTY-FOUR - Building Blocks
CHAPTER TWENTY-FIVE - Moon Dial
CHAPTER TWENTY-SIX - Open
CHAPTER TWENTY-SEVEN - Sadness
CHAPTER TWENTY-EIGHT - Gone
CHAPTER TWENTY-NINE - Journal
CHAPTER THIRTY - Peninsula
CHAPTER THIRTY-ONE - Radal
CHAPTER THIRTY-TWO - Mara


---------

A young woman sits a an ornate wooden desk, writing on the first page of a leatherbound, blank journal...

Where to begin?  I suppose I should start by telling you about my home, and the way it's changed.  When I was growing up, we always called it Ajri, which just meant "the land."  There was no other place but the water, which surrounded the land on all sides, and, as far as we knew, went on and on to the end of creation. 

Ajri is a beautiful place.  The sun always shines, except when light showers rain down on the trees and grass, to keep them green.  Soft breezes blow in across the ocean, scented with the flowers they rustle along the coast.  Our legends and myths and ancient texts contain other words for the island, used in stories or by peoples long ago forgotten:  Elysium. Avalon. Tir na Nog. Valinor.



The list is long, but all of the stories talk of paradise; a place of eternal youth and beauty where music, joy, abundance of life, and all pleasurable pursuits come together in a single place.  Where happiness lasts forever, and sickness and death simply do not exist.

To those who actually live here, though, our lives were a collection of simple pursuits, lived in the same way they had been lived for as long as any could remember.   And our paradise was built, not a gift from some greater gods.

The Nelayan family lived in small fishing villages all along the coast, and were the best sailors and boatwrights on the island.  Their houses were small and simple, but their people were well-respected – even revered – as the Ones Who Provide Food.   Ajri provided all of us with fruits and herbs for the taking, but the Nelayan hauled in great nets full of fish, brought baskets of clams and oysters up from the ocean's floor, and provided us all with shrimp, and lobster and the other fruits of the sea.  They also farmed grains and vegetables, hunted for game, and raised small animals for milk and cheese, or for eggs.  Without their labor, we would have all spent our days toiling away for subsistence, and our society would never have developed into anything greater.



Our progress was reflected in the name of the Pembina family, which originally meant simply "the Ones Who Provide Shelter."  But their craftsmanship extended far beyond simple housing.  It's true that they built beautiful buildings.  Their stonemasons, glaziers, blacksmiths, carpenters and woodcarvers were clever and highly skilled, and could build fantastical structures that rose up higher than the trees.  But they also carved beautiful windowscreens, and built sturdy furniture.  They made wagons and carts, barrels and bottles, knives and horseshoes, guitars and drums, pots and pans and sinks and tubs.   It seemed that in all cases, if something needed to be manufactured, their craftsmen could conceive a solution, and then produce it from their busy and inventive workshops.  Anything practical or mechanical was within their purview, and they never disappointed.



Both families traded often with the jah'Itan – the Ones Who Provide Clothing – whose weavers made fabric of all kinds, from sturdy sailcloth, to delicate veiling, to richly colored brocades and damasks.  The jah'Itan were also the jewelers of the island, working pearls found by the Nelayan divers or gems found by the Pembina miners into necklaces, bracelets, earrings and headbands of surpassing beauty.   Just as the Pembina were concerned with everything practical, the jah'Itan made it their business to produce or procure any fanciful item you could imagine, and some you could not.  They made feathered jackets and embossed boots, embroidered belts and lace veils.  They were enthusiastic traders of all manner of goods, and their market days were not to be missed.  Everyone came from all over Ajri to barter, buy and sell everything from fruit pies and small simple toys to elaborate dresses, painted carriages and exotic birds. 



My family had few tangible things to trade – the items we crafted we always gave away, and the items we needed were given to us when needed – so we mostly came to the markets for news and entertainment.  The reason we were so well provided for was because we are the den'Rhelys, which means...  Actually, it's difficult to explain.  It's nothing so straightforward as providing shelter or food or clothing. Den'Rhelys literally means "the Ones Who Know."   And indeed, we started as teachers, and have always been teachers.  But we do more than instruct.  We produce medicines and laws, we catalogue plants and animals, create art and music, research new sciences and magics and record them all for future generations.   The builders were busy with building, the sewers with sewing and the fishers with fishing.  But the den'Rhelys were able to devote our time and effort fully to the cooperative pursuit of knowledge.  We had time to make discoveries, explore their applications, and share them with any who could use them. 



Most importantly, though, the den'Rhelys were -- and still are -- the  Keepers of the Gate.  And the Gate is what kept Ajri safe from all of the evils that dwelled in other worlds. We had built it, or our forefathers had, in ages long past.   It was locked with a seal that looked like the sun, and guarded by a pedstal that contained the light of the moon.  I don't claim to understand how it was locked -- I couldn't stand to be in the room with it. From the rear, the gate appeared to be standing freely in the center of the room, offering a clear view to the other side.  But from the front, it led into utter blackness, and a cold, cold breeze blew through its grilled portal.



Luckily, my mother and father and a few other very wise scholars looked after the gate.  My siblings and I were not yet needed or learned enough to be its guardians.  We were of an age to travel to the other families to live with them, to teach their children the basics, like reading, writing, history and mathematics.  While there, we were also tasked with learning skills and crafts, facilitating communication between the families and workshops on Ajri, and most importantly, looking for any students with particular talents that should be cultivated for the good of all of us.  If we found such students, my father and a group of scholars would come to meet the child and, if the student were selected, my father would request that the family let the child go back with him for further education, and to become one of the scholars who lived and worked at our library.  It was considered the highest honor to be chosen.  No one ever refused.

When I was younger, I went to the jah'Itan.  I learned the arts of weaving and jewelry making, and taught their youngest children their lessons.   I sent regular reports back to my father, detailing the new ideas and processes that the Pembina had developed, disputes that needed resolution, or problems to be overcome, and he shared the reports with the scholars who might be interested or helpful.    I also found a boy whose instinctive understanding of higher mathematics would have been wasted on bookkeeping for his family.



My sister Nellaska lived with the Nelayan, who taught her to fish and farm, to track and hunt, and to respect the balance of the water and the land.   She found a young girl whose innate curiosity about plants had already led to the discovery of several new uses, as well a skilled young artist whose ability to paint and sculpt would have been limited in a family who spent most of their time on the water.



My brother Jaffaran lived with the Pembina, and -- well.  I don't criticize my brother's learning or his dedication to Ajri.  Jaffaran was as much a scholar as the rest of us, and I would never suggest that he would fail to do his duty.  Especially not now.  But to understand my brother, you must understand how much delight he took in the pleasures that Ajri offered.  The den'Bruhal had sometimes been criticized, fairly or not, for a sense of superiority.  We were said to be as aloof and as distant as our marble city on the island's highest peak, detached from the rest of the island, and from day to day life itself.  But Jaffaran was different.  He spent a good deal of his time among the Pembina carousing with the miners, teaching rude songs to the stonemasons, and riding his horse all over the countryside with friends for-- as he always justified it-- research purposes.  It meant he became a part of his new home much more fully than Nellaska and I became part of ours.  The Pembina loved him for it.

As I said, I wouldn't criticize my brother.  In the midst of all of his "outside research," he taught their chidren well, and he learned a good deal about building. 



It was his identification of local scholars, however, that led my father to question his work with the Pembina.  Especially the one he brought home with him.


Offline Luna

  • Silent Reader
  • Immortal
  • *****
  • Posts: 668
  • The time is always right to do what is right :)
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter One - The Island
« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2013, 10:51:51 PM »
This is absolutely stunning... I'm in awe with your building creation and those screenshots :o
The story itself is well-written and it's pretty impressive!

...totally lost in words. 
Just enjoy being yourself, you're unique, special and no one ever create story like you ♥ - Luna -

My story:
For The Children - Chapter 6: Adorable



Registered members do not see ads on this Forum. Register here.

Offline intl_incident

  • You can call me Indy! :D
  • Occult
  • ****
  • Posts: 334
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter One - The Island
« Reply #2 on: October 23, 2013, 09:56:48 AM »
Awww, thanks, Luna!  I'm glad you're enjoying it so far, and I hope to have the next chapter up in a day or so.  I'm so happy I have at least one reader. :D

Offline Trip

  • Challenge Board Assistant
  • Global Moderator
  • Watcher
  • ******
  • Posts: 4069
  • Oh, she wanna creep like ivy?
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter One - The Island
« Reply #3 on: October 23, 2013, 10:01:35 AM »
That's some amazing background and world building right there. I really can't wait to see where the last sentence leads to.
No respect, no chance, cease and desist when I chant-

Forum Rules / DecaDynasty

Offline intl_incident

  • You can call me Indy! :D
  • Occult
  • ****
  • Posts: 334
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Two - Savna
« Reply #4 on: October 23, 2013, 10:57:17 PM »
Savna Pembina was a lovely girl.  She was bright, clever, witty and sweet.  But she was also the middle daughter of the head of the Pembina family, and there was no justifiable reason whatsoever for her to be here, with my brother and no other escort.  It was completely unheard of, especially as she was nearly my age, and not a viable candidate to be accepted as a scholar.



As he walked up the steps to meet us, I could tell my brother was nervous.  My father's jaw was set in stern disapproval, and Savna looked as though she might flee if she hadn't been holding so tightly to Jaffaran's hand. 



Luckily my mother spoke first. "Welcome home," she said with a smile. "We've missed you so."  She pulled him into a motherly hug, but it was mostly to murmur into his ear: "Radal Pembina has already written to your father."



Jaffaran stiffened at the quiet words, and stepped back from the embrace.  "I've missed you as well, Mother. Father."  He nodded at both of our parents in turn, and then held out a hand to bring his companion forward.  "May I present..."

"Savna Pembina," my father interrupted him, his displeasure clear in his voice.  "We know her well. And her parents."  He took a half-step forward, preparing to launch into the lecture that we all knew was coming, but my mother was quicker once again.

"Welcome to our home, Lady Savna," she said with her best diplomatic smile. "We are honored as always to host a guest from your family."

"The honor is mine, Lady Ybeline," Savna replied in her clear, lilting voice. She  pressed her hands together in the traditional greeting. "I wish good fortune to you and all your family."



"You know my daughters, Nellaska and Meridel?" My mother gestured to my sister and I, and we returned Savna's friendly smile.

"We met as children, of course," she said. "And though it's been several years since I've seen you in person, Ladies, Jaff has read me so many of your letters, and told me so many wonderful things, I feel as though I know you well."



My father's eyebrow shot up practically to his hairline as Savna used the familiar form of my brother's name. "Jaffaran," he pointedly enunciated, "is not known for his discretion.  Nor his good sense.  Might I ask what other private things he's shared with you aside from his sisters' letters?"

"I... Lord Mithren, I didn't mean to offend... Ladies, I'm sorry if I've spoken too freely. I never intended any disrespect... " Savna was taken aback by the rebuke, and stammered her reply in confusion. My brother started forward to her defense, clearly upset by my father's insinuations.  I took a step toward him to try to defuse the situation, and I could see my mother's hand going up to touch my father on the arm.  It was my ever-practical sister, though, who saved the day.  Nellaska had never had much patience for this sort of thing, and even that little bit had dissipated during her years with the Nelayan. 

"For the love of all that's good, don't terrify the girl." She waved her hands as if to dismiss the tension. "Forgive Lord Mithren his lack of manners," she said lightly, as she took Savna companionably by the arm. "Contrary to popular rumor and my father's best efforts to prove me wrong, I assure you that we are all very nice people here, and no one is going to do any worse to you than what you've already endured at the hands of almighty decorum.  You must promise to stop stuttering immediately, and to call me 'Nellaska,' not 'lady.'  I, for one, am delighted to have someone new to talk to."



"And call me Meridel," I quickly added. "I'm sure you're tired after your journey. Please may I show you some rooms, and have your things brought to you?"

"And a meal," said my mother, beckoning to one of the household staff who were practically lurking in the bushes to see how this new development would play out.

My father frowned at our polite rebellion, but he could hardly object to common courtesy. "Lady Savna," he said brusquely, "the women of the house will take excellent care of you, I trust. Now you must excuse me to take my leave of you all. I have some business to discuss with my son, as I am sure you can imagine."

Jaffaran had the good grace not to respond to my father's chastising tone, but the poor judgment to take Savna's hand and brush the back of it with a kiss. "I'll see you at dinner, I promise."



I am sure my eyes got wider; I couldn't help it.  My father ground his teeth, my mother put a hand to the side of her forehead, and Savna's cheeks turned a delicate shell pink.  Nellaska, on the other hand, rolled her eyes. "Well, my stars," she drawled sarcastically. "Shall one of us faint from the scandal?  Take Lady Savna's trunk to the green suite," she added to the now openly gawking staff. "We'll follow shortly."

"And you," my father said to Jaffaran, in the same commanding tone, "Will join me in my study.  Immediately."



As I led the Pembina girl into the house, Nellaska looked back over her shoulder at Jaffaran, and shook her head at him with an amused, affectionate smile.  I know she meant well, but in truth my brother needed to hear whatever my father was about to say to him, no matter how stern.  He certainly didn't seem to understand the gravity of what he'd done, considering the wink he gave Nellaska in return.  My father saw the exchange, set his jaw even more firmly, turned on his heel and stalked inside. 



Offline intl_incident

  • You can call me Indy! :D
  • Occult
  • ****
  • Posts: 334
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter One - The Island
« Reply #5 on: October 23, 2013, 10:59:36 PM »
That's some amazing background and world building right there. I really can't wait to see where the last sentence leads to.

Oh, it's just some run-of-the-mill dynastic marriage drama.  For now. :)

So glad you like it so far!


Offline Eldridge

  • I am thou, thou art I
  • Watcher
  • ******
  • Posts: 2043
  • Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none.
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Two - Savna
« Reply #6 on: October 23, 2013, 11:33:36 PM »
You're really good! I'm impressed! Not only that you're good with building, you're really good capturing these moments. I really love the scenery! Your story is also good ;D

Please keep writing this until last chapter!
“Sometimes the little things in life mean the most.” ― Ellen Hopkins

My Stories:
1. The Demosthenes Immortal Dynasty: Kev's Corner #08 - Thankful (31/12/13)
2. The Goode-Rotter's Life Story: Case Eleven - Signs of Love (27/12/13)



Registered members do not see ads on this Forum. Register here.

Offline Nettlejuice

  • Baba Gothel
  • Watcher
  • ******
  • Posts: 2836
  • Mother knows best, Rapunzel
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Two - Savna
« Reply #7 on: October 24, 2013, 02:24:43 PM »
Just wow! I am blown away by the world, all the buildings and your characters. They're all beautifully presented and your writing really drew me in. Your screenshot taking is so much better than mine ^^
Chant: Life States (TS3) / Immortal Dynasty (TS4)




Mother Gothel & Baba Yaga Enthusiast

Offline Luna

  • Silent Reader
  • Immortal
  • *****
  • Posts: 668
  • The time is always right to do what is right :)
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Two - Savna
« Reply #8 on: October 26, 2013, 03:09:55 AM »
It’s another wonderful update. The graphics was amazing! Do you have a high-end PC somehow and use mods or something? I just wonder. I never seen Sims graphic that so much details and scenery that beautiful ^^
Just enjoy being yourself, you're unique, special and no one ever create story like you ♥ - Luna -

My story:
For The Children - Chapter 6: Adorable

Offline intl_incident

  • You can call me Indy! :D
  • Occult
  • ****
  • Posts: 334
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Two - Savna
« Reply #9 on: October 28, 2013, 06:11:20 PM »
You're really good! I'm impressed! Not only that you're good with building, you're really good capturing these moments. I really love the scenery! Your story is also good ;D

Please keep writing this until last chapter!

Thanks so much! I'm really glad you like the story and that you think I'm capturing the moments well.  This is all pretty new to me, so I"m happy to know it's working so far. :) I certainly intend to keep writing until the end -- I hope I can keep it interesting!

Just wow! I am blown away by the world, all the buildings and your characters. They're all beautifully presented and your writing really drew me in. Your screenshot taking is so much better than mine ^^

It’s another wonderful update. The graphics was amazing! Do you have a high-end PC somehow and use mods or something? I just wonder. I never seen Sims graphic that so much details and scenery that beautiful ^^

Thanks for the kind words, both of you. :)  Though I'm new at storytelling, I've been taking screenshots forever as a builder, so I think that some of that experience has paid off.  I do have all of the graphics set to the highest level when I take pictures, but I don't have any special mods for screenshots.  I think in this particular story part of the reason I can have so much detail in the scenes is that I've really only built sets, not full houses, etc.  A couple of shots don't even have a back wall on the 'room.'  :) That makes it easier to add a bunch of stuff into the screenshot area.

And I'm glad you like the writing so far because the next post is REALLY wordy.  I used to roleplay online, and people used to complain about how long my poses were.  I think that tendency may have carried over to the Sims, too. :)  If it's too much text, let me know, and I'll try to cutback on the verbiage in the next installment after this one.

Offline intl_incident

  • You can call me Indy! :D
  • Occult
  • ****
  • Posts: 334
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Three - Father
« Reply #10 on: October 28, 2013, 06:12:29 PM »
My father's study was a large room, filled with books and artifacts and items to examine.  His polished desk, the wooden shelves and tables, and the gilded edges of the cabinets all gave the room a feeling of masculine warmth and strength that was perfectly suited to my father's nature.   I can remember being a small child, sneaking into the room to find him sitting in his tall cushioned chair, poring over an old text or a new project, sunlight streaming through the windows behind him to fill the room with golden light.  He would always pretend not to see me until I made some deliberate sound, and then he'd play along as if I'd startled him out of his studies, and he'd either read me the story I'd come to hear, or, as I got older, start a game of chess.  Even now, when I step into the room I always feel as though I'm walking into an extension of his arms, and a tight, loving hug.



I doubt my brother felt the same way, as my father slammed the door behind him and strode angrily toward the massive desk. "Explain yourself," he snapped, all pretense aside now that guests and staff were safely out of earshot.



"Father, I have no intention of causing any difficulties between you and Lord Radal, and I merely--"

"You've done that already. I mean explain to me what you plan to do with that girl."

"I plan to marry her."

"You will NOT." My father didn't raise his voice, but his reply was vehement.

"I plan to marry her," Jaffaran said again, slowly and deliberately. "Whether you approve or you don't."

"You are the eldest son and heir of one of the four great houses of Ajri," my father thundered.  "You do not marry whom or when you choose!"  This was more than the defiance of a son against a father.  This was defiance of generations of tradition so well accepted it might as well have been written law.



To maintain the paradise that Ajri had become, each family carefully monitored and controlled the marriages and reproduction of its own members.  It was partly to prevent the overpopulation that would have overtaken the island once we were able to extend life to whatever age we chose, and partly to ensure that each generation of a family would have the genetic gifts and talents required by our society.  Just as I knew I would someday wed a distant cousin whose traits and skills complemented my own, Jaffaran knew he would be required do the same. And Savna would be wed to someone in her own family lineage, to pass her gifts and those of her husband to the next generation of Pembina heirs.
 
In case he had forgotten, my father recounted the expectations for my brother, at ever-increasing volume: "A son does not marry until his parents permit it.  He does not marry until the family needs a child.  He does not marry unless an elder has chosen to leave us. He does not marry outside the family lineage.  He does not marry because he's infatuated with some pretty girl, and he most certainly does not kidnap the daughter of Radal Pembina and marry her with neither her family's permission nor his own!"
 
"Great stars in the heavens, boy," my father's tirade continued with no sign of stopping, "do you intend to pitch a tent with her midway between here and the Peninsula?  Her father is not going to let her live here, and you are most certainly not going to live there.  Your journeyman days are over, as of this instant. You are not going back to the miners and the masons, you are not going back to their taverns and ale halls, and you are not going back to your supposed friends who have caused you to forget your duty, your family and apparently your common sense.""



"I didn't KIDNAP her," Jaffaran finally interjected.

"I see you don't argue with the rest of what I've said."

"Father, will you please just listen? For just a moment."



"Listen to what? That you're in love? You're 147 years old! Everyone is in love at your age. I was in love with your mother's sister.  THAT DOESN'T MEAN I MARRIED HER."



"I'm not you," Jaffaran shot back, "And I -- wait... You were in love with Aunt Cerian?"  Jaffaran's eyebrows knit together in momentary confusion, and it was enough to finally stop my father from yelling.

"Cerian? Nooooo, no no."  My elder aunt would not have been flattered by the tone in Father's voice. "Eliena."



"Oh,"  Jaffaran shifted his weight from foot to foot, trying to figure out what to say to that. "Uh..."



 "Yes. Well." My father shifted his feet in an unconscious mimicry, then turned the conversation away from his own youthful romances and back to my brother's, this time more quietly.  "I'm not unsympathetic, Jaffaran.  But you must think this through.  Will you dilute your family legacy, and ask Savna to dilute hers?  I married your mother to give you and your sisters your gift with alchemy.  You're expected to pass that to your own children, and to marry someone who will increase their skills with medicine.  Instead you want your children to have only half of what's been passed down to you? To wipe away generations of progress in a single marriage?"  My father was less angry now; more bewildered. "And what will you do with those children? Dole them out to your families like splitting a bunch of grapes?  One for den'Rhelys, one for Pembina?"
 
"Nellaska will have children," Jaffaran tried to argue. "And Meridel. I’m not the family’s only heir."
 
"No, but you are an heir, and so you have a responsibility to do what's expected of you, as does Lady Savna. And suppose your sisters want to marry for love as well? Then what? You alone shoud have an exception?" My father shook his head.  "If I approve this match, I undermine everything we've worked for, as a family and as a society.  We've achieved paradise,  or close to it.  And I can't permit you to take us backwards."
 
“It’s not paradise though, is it?" Jaffaran said flatly. "Not when we have no choices. Not when our lives are not our own to live, but are already given over to whomever comes next.”



"And isn't that the purpose of life?" My father asked.  "To make things better for others?"

"You think I'm selfish?" Jaffaran demanded.

"I think," my father said, laying a kindly hand on Jaffaran's shoulder, "That you're young, and your heart is telling you that you love that girl.  But a wise man finds love with his head, not his heart."

Offline Nettlejuice

  • Baba Gothel
  • Watcher
  • ******
  • Posts: 2836
  • Mother knows best, Rapunzel
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Three - Father
« Reply #11 on: October 29, 2013, 04:23:34 AM »
You should continue writing this way, I love it - it's like reading a great book that you can't put down =]

I think the way you've set up these 'stages' is great, it must be like being on a film set for the sims =D
Chant: Life States (TS3) / Immortal Dynasty (TS4)




Mother Gothel & Baba Yaga Enthusiast

Offline Eldridge

  • I am thou, thou art I
  • Watcher
  • ******
  • Posts: 2043
  • Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none.
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Three - Father
« Reply #12 on: October 29, 2013, 06:22:58 PM »
I have found this chapter was enjoyable. I love the intrigue between father and son. The dialogue that we have here is so real and don't forget about the screenshots that add more touch to this story! I just curious, it's based on real custom somewhere in our world? You know about that marriage things. Because I found out about 'Nelayan' thing also another word for "Fisherman" in another language.
“Sometimes the little things in life mean the most.” ― Ellen Hopkins

My Stories:
1. The Demosthenes Immortal Dynasty: Kev's Corner #08 - Thankful (31/12/13)
2. The Goode-Rotter's Life Story: Case Eleven - Signs of Love (27/12/13)

Offline melancholy_anju

  • Occult
  • ****
  • Posts: 292
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Three - Father
« Reply #13 on: October 30, 2013, 12:21:01 AM »
This story is absolutely amazing. I was already a huge fan of you because of your building, but now I read this and realize you are just all around awesome.  :D

Offline intl_incident

  • You can call me Indy! :D
  • Occult
  • ****
  • Posts: 334
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Three - Father
« Reply #14 on: October 31, 2013, 10:33:37 PM »
You should continue writing this way, I love it - it's like reading a great book that you can't put down =]

I think the way you've set up these 'stages' is great, it must be like being on a film set for the sims =D

Oooh, a book you can't put down. That's a great compliment!  Thanks, and I'll keep writing it as is, then. The next chapter will take a little longer to post, I think, because of the need to build more sets than usual, but hopefully they'll look interesting enough to be worth the extra wait. :)  Hopefully I'll have it up by the end of the weekend.

I have found this chapter was enjoyable. I love the intrigue between father and son. The dialogue that we have here is so real and don't forget about the screenshots that add more touch to this story! I just curious, it's based on real custom somewhere in our world? You know about that marriage things. Because I found out about 'Nelayan' thing also another word for "Fisherman" in another language.

You're a good detective! Nelayan does mean "fisherman" in Indonesian.  Pembina also means "builder" in Malay.  I was trying to think of names for the families, and cheated with Google translate :)  Since the story is set on an island, I chose some island languages to use.

I made up the specific marriage restrictions myself.  They're sort of a mishmash of medieval marriage and arranged marriage customs and some science fiction-type additions of my own (that is, the idea of each generation of children having to be sort of 'engineered' to improve their genetically inherited skills and talents is not a real custom anywhere that I know of. :)

This story is absolutely amazing. I was already a huge fan of you because of your building, but now I read this and realize you are just all around awesome.  :D

Ha ha... thanks! That's really nice of you to say, and I'm so glad you like the story.  I will endeavor to keep up the appropriate level of awesomeness! ;)

Offline intl_incident

  • You can call me Indy! :D
  • Occult
  • ****
  • Posts: 334
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Four - Unpacking
« Reply #15 on: November 02, 2013, 07:48:12 PM »
A short update while I keep working on the sets for the next chapter...

-------------

Unfortunately, while my father was trying to encourage my brother to think with his head, not his heart, Savna practically embodied the very sort of reckless romance he was fighting against.

"...had never seen anyone so handsome in all my life."  She looked up from her unpacking with the same wide and exuberant smile she had been wearing since she started talking about my brother's arrival at her family's home.  To hear her tell it, she had been madly in love from the moment Jaffaran rode into their courtyard on his enormous golden stallion. "He was so tall, and so graceful, and so... I don't know...clean."

"Clean?" Nellaska silently mouthed the word to me over the back of Savna's head, and then rolled her eyes, as she'd been doing nearly non-stop since this whole conversation began.  Granted, he was our brother, so we had a jaded eye for his charms, but basic hygiene did seem a low standard to meet.



Savna must have caught a glimpse of my sister's reaction, or maybe sensed my hesitation at her enthusiasm, because she laughed at her own words. "I sound ridiculous," she admitted. "But most of the men on the Peninsula work in the mines or the craft rooms.  Everyone wears dark working clothes and is always covered in dust.  Your brother showed up in his ivory shirt, on his beautiful horse, with his white cloak blowing backwards in the breeze. He looked like sunshine or starlight had just come to earth right on the courtyard cobbles."



"There is more to a man than his appearance," my mother interjected, lest we be treated to another exaggerated recounting of Jaffaran's good looks.  Or possibly, given the irritated glance she shot in my sister's direction, she spoke up to cover the sound of the laughter that Nellaska was unsuccessfully trying to stifle in the corner.  I busied myself carrying some of Savna's belongings to hide a smile of my own at the idea of my brother as some perfect vision of manhood, leaving my mother to deal with Savna. "Your family works hard, and hard work makes dust. But it also makes strong character, and all skills have their value."

"I know, ma'am," Savna replied, slightly chastened by my mother's words, but still beaming. "I'm sorry if I've come off sounding like a shallow puddle of water. And Jaff-- Jaffaran -- That is, Lord Jaffaran has said the same thing about my family, many times.  I must tell you, he was nothing at all like what I was expecting.  My father had told us -- I apologize, ma'am -- he had told us that because Jaffaran was not just den'Rhelys but one of the heirs, he was likely to be dissatisfied with the rooms we gave him and the food we ate, that he would find us uneducated and unsophisticated, and that we should ask him to--"  She hesitated. "Well, I suppose it doesn't matter."

 

"Do tell," my sister prompted.

"Oh, I would rather not. It was... quite rude."

"All the better," Nellaska cheerfully encouraged her, but my mother quelled that notion wth a frown at my sister, and a pat on Savna's arm.



"I imagine it had to do with asking my son to pee in a bottle so you could sell it to the jah'Itan as perfume?"  Savna's startled blink was all the confirmation we needed. "My dear, your father has trotted out that particular witticism on any number of occasions, in reference to any number of our family.  You needn't apologize for him. Lord Mithren and I know very well what Lord Radal perceives to be our  shortcomings and our views toward his house and all the other families on Ajri. I'm not sure why, and we have tried to change his opinion, but for whatever reason, he continues to think as he does. Now then, will you indulge a mother's wish, and tell me more about Jaffaran's time with your family?"

She gestured toward the large and comfortable bed that filled the center of the room, guiding Sanva to have a seat.  The staff had brought fruit and pastries and nectar, so we all settled in for the story of how my brother had managed to sweep her off her feet and out of her father's house.


Offline Nettlejuice

  • Baba Gothel
  • Watcher
  • ******
  • Posts: 2836
  • Mother knows best, Rapunzel
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Four - Unpacking
« Reply #16 on: November 03, 2013, 04:15:36 AM »
I like Nellaska, hope to see more of her! The poses you use are brilliant, where did you get them from?
Chant: Life States (TS3) / Immortal Dynasty (TS4)




Mother Gothel & Baba Yaga Enthusiast

Offline Eldridge

  • I am thou, thou art I
  • Watcher
  • ******
  • Posts: 2043
  • Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none.
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Four - Unpacking
« Reply #17 on: November 03, 2013, 11:11:00 PM »
Thanks for the explanation; it does satisfy my curiosity ;)

This is an interesting chapter as always. It was such an effort to see all of the scenery, especially for the women poses. I don't know what else to write in comment section, so... next chapter then!
“Sometimes the little things in life mean the most.” ― Ellen Hopkins

My Stories:
1. The Demosthenes Immortal Dynasty: Kev's Corner #08 - Thankful (31/12/13)
2. The Goode-Rotter's Life Story: Case Eleven - Signs of Love (27/12/13)

Offline intl_incident

  • You can call me Indy! :D
  • Occult
  • ****
  • Posts: 334
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Four - Unpacking
« Reply #18 on: November 04, 2013, 12:40:11 PM »
I like Nellaska, hope to see more of her! The poses you use are brilliant, where did you get them from?

Thanks! I hadn't really decided on a personality for Nellaska yet when I started writing, but I definitely like the way her character is going.  Confession: she is partly reflecting my own response to some of what's going on.  I think I write romantic dialogue about as well as George Lucas (which is to say, very badly), and Savna is intended to be a little overly dramatic anyway, but I can't help but laugh at some of it when I'm writing it.  So Nellaska laughs about it in the story. :)

The poses come from an assortment of places; I can PM you some links if you like.  I also often use the poses in ways that are not the original intention.  For example, in the one where Meridel is holding the basket, I think that was either a pregancy pose, or a pose where a mother was supposed to be holding a newborn.  The one where Nellaska is on the bed eating a piece of fruit was a fashion pose of some sort, and I put a piece of "fruit" in her hand that was actually a miniaturized, recolored ball.

Some of the "poses" are game animations that I triggered manually with a mod.  For example, in the first shot, Nellaska is doing the "check for rain" animation.  When the mom is patting Savna on the arm in the next to last shot, it's the "cheer up" animation.

And of course, some of the shots are just regular game interactions.  Those are the easy ones! :D

Offline Nettlejuice

  • Baba Gothel
  • Watcher
  • ******
  • Posts: 2836
  • Mother knows best, Rapunzel
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Four - Unpacking
« Reply #19 on: November 04, 2013, 12:46:18 PM »
I'd love the links, please ^_^ You have a clever way of choosing the poses for each shot. I so get what you mean about George Lucas! But I do like how you're going about it.
Chant: Life States (TS3) / Immortal Dynasty (TS4)




Mother Gothel & Baba Yaga Enthusiast

Offline Luna

  • Silent Reader
  • Immortal
  • *****
  • Posts: 668
  • The time is always right to do what is right :)
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Four - Unpacking
« Reply #20 on: November 06, 2013, 04:40:07 PM »
Amazing updates like always  8)

I can't wait for the next installment :)
Just enjoy being yourself, you're unique, special and no one ever create story like you ♥ - Luna -

My story:
For The Children - Chapter 6: Adorable

Offline intl_incident

  • You can call me Indy! :D
  • Occult
  • ****
  • Posts: 334
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Five - Courtyard
« Reply #21 on: November 08, 2013, 01:11:08 AM »
Another short update, to introduce some more characters.  I should be able to update more quickly for the next few chapters, because I (finally) have all of the screenshots done for the next little while.  For this next section, I hope it's obvious from the text that these next few chapters are "flashbacks."  I'll use a glowy border for the flashback shots, and the narrator will be Savna (so she is the "I" in these chapters).  If anyone in the main timeline says anything, like the intro line here, it will be in italics.

--------------

"It was a beautiful day at sunset," Savna said, "And we had all gathered on the steps to see what he'd be like. I was standing by my brother Torin..."

"I don't know, Sanni," Torin whispered to me, eyes on  the new teacher as he rode up the courtyard path. "He looks to me like a normal, friendly person.  I don't see any horde of servants to throw flower petals in his path... or any flight of fairies behind him to hold up his cloak, or..."

"Shush," I whispered, lest our father overhear us.

"I'm just saying Father's going to be disappointed."

"Torin, shush!" The new teacher's horse had stopped clip-clopping on the stones, and Father was bound to hear. Besides, he was distracting me, and I was trying to get a better look.  There might have been no flight of fairies behind him, but the sun was setting behind Jaffaran's back, and it looked like a halo around his head.  I must have sighed aloud, because Torin was snickering beside me.  I surreptitiously squashed his toe with my boot.



"Jafaran den'Rhelys," my father called out. "I don't know why Lord Mithren decided we need a new teacher, or why he thought we needed you of all people, when we had a perfectly respectable, much more experienced and  far more suitable instructor already. But I suppose if he's sent you we'll have to make the best of it. As will you, I suppose."

"He's such a diplomat."  Torin apparently had no intention of stopping his whispered commentary. "Do you think he practiced that all day or improvised it on the spot?"
 
"My cousin was of an age to return home," Jaffaran replied to my father, "And--"

"And you're barely an age to be out from behind a student's desk let alone standing in front of it.  Are you going to get off that horse, or are your feet too good for our cobbles?"

My father was an expert at goading people, and given what he'd told us about the den'Rhelys heirs, I expected Jaffaran to reply with some sort of haughty insult that would give my father an excuse to vent his temper even further.  But instead, he slid out of his saddle with a smooth, graceful motion, and smiled up at my family.



"Quite the opposite," he said cheerfully. "The stonework is beautiful.  I'm very much looking forward to seeing how it's done."

"Our crafters have real work to do," my father said flatly. "They're not here to indulge your curiosity."

"Of course not," Jaffaran answered, still with a cordial smile. "But hopefully they'll let me watch from afar."

I think my father realized that his slights were getting him nowhere, and that instead he just looked petty when faced with good manners. He glared down at Jaffaran, who smiled implacably back.

"I have other things to do," Father finally said. "One of the staff will show you to the teacher's rooms. They won't be what you're used to, but they're what you'll get while you're here.  Stellan, come with me."  My father turned on his heel, calling my older brother along with him, and taking my mother's arm as he went. 

"Well, I guess that's it for the introductions," I overheard Jaffaran say to his horse, as he flipped the reins back over the stallion's neck.  But Torin was bounding down the steps and holding out his hand.  I tagged along behind him.

"Sorry about that," my brother said to the new arrival. "Let me give you a proper welcome. I'm Torin, and this is my sister Savna."



I opened my mouth, but couldn't come up with a single thing to say.  As he turned to look at me, all I could think was that up close, Jaffaran's smile was an even brighter white than his tunic. So I stared at him, like a gaping fish.  His lips twitched a bit in amused curiosity, my brother eyed me like I had a second head, and I could feel my cheeks turning pink. Luckily two of the family's children ran up, and started clamoring for the attention of their new teacher.

"What's your horse named? Can I give him a carrot? Is he a he?"
"Do we have class tomorrow? Are you going to teach us music? Are you old enough to be a teacher? Lord Radal says you're not."



Jaffaran laughed, and held up a hand to ward off the interrogation. "One at a time! His name is Astanal, he is indeed a he, and if you give him a carrot be prepared for him to follow you around for days like the greedy beggar he is."  The stallion snorted as if he understood , and turned his rump toward his rider to gobble up the offered treat. "As for you, young lady," he said to the other student, "We do have class tomorrow, I am going to teach you music, and I would never dare to contradict the head of your family.  So hopefully I will age overnight."  He tugged her kerchief down over her eyes, but couldn't hide the yawn that followed.



"You've been riding all day," Torin said. "Come on, I'll show you where the stables are.  You kids grab those saddle bags, and put them in the teacher's rooms."  Torin threw an arm over Jaffaran's shoulder and steered him in the right direction. Astanal dutifully trailed behind without a lead.

"It's nice to meet you," I finally managed to squeak.  But I was talking to no one but myself.


Offline intl_incident

  • You can call me Indy! :D
  • Occult
  • ****
  • Posts: 334
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Four - Unpacking
« Reply #22 on: November 08, 2013, 01:15:53 AM »
Amazing updates like always  8)

I can't wait for the next installment :)

Thanks!  And there you go -- the next installment.  :D Sorry for the delay, but hopefully I will be able to pick up the pace now that I have the screenshots done, and I figured out how I wanted to handle the flashbacks.  I must have started and re-started this particular, very easy chapter about five times.   

Hope you enjoy it.

Offline Eldridge

  • I am thou, thou art I
  • Watcher
  • ******
  • Posts: 2043
  • Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none.
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Five - Courtyard
« Reply #23 on: November 08, 2013, 01:07:17 PM »
Wow, what a good editing for the screenshots! I really loved to see the effect ;D
Not only detail with the story, you also add detail with the scenery and the thing that I love the most is your Sims facial expression/pose!
Oh, wow! I think that I still have a long way to go to reach your level ;D *applause*
This story is getting interesting even with a short update; I can't wait to see what happen next!
“Sometimes the little things in life mean the most.” ― Ellen Hopkins

My Stories:
1. The Demosthenes Immortal Dynasty: Kev's Corner #08 - Thankful (31/12/13)
2. The Goode-Rotter's Life Story: Case Eleven - Signs of Love (27/12/13)

Offline Nettlejuice

  • Baba Gothel
  • Watcher
  • ******
  • Posts: 2836
  • Mother knows best, Rapunzel
Re: Ajri's Ivory Shores: Chapter Five - Courtyard
« Reply #24 on: November 08, 2013, 03:35:07 PM »
I'm always amazed by your work. It's great to see background characters in the first screenshot, it makes it much more realistic and I can see why Savna was entranced by Jaffaran's appearance. I'm been meaning to ask, are they of Asian descent? Their names certainly sound as if they are, and also the greeting they did with their hands.
Chant: Life States (TS3) / Immortal Dynasty (TS4)




Mother Gothel & Baba Yaga Enthusiast