Author Topic: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty - The Open Sky (8/31/19)  (Read 15437 times)

Offline BallerinaHippo

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"A Bunch'a Lionesses" (3/24/19)
« Reply #125 on: March 25, 2019, 10:53:49 AM »
It's my turn to get caught up, and yay!  So many good things going on here--  from Kite finally realizing his feelings to Ketral's no-nonsense advice to Miko swooping in and saving the day.

Also, (rhetorical question) why do so many NPC's hate children?  Especially NPC's with children.

Offline Deme

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"A Bunch'a Lionesses" (3/24/19)
« Reply #126 on: April 10, 2019, 10:05:40 PM »
It's my turn to get caught up, and yay!  So many good things going on here--  from Kite finally realizing his feelings to Ketral's no-nonsense advice to Miko swooping in and saving the day.

Also, (rhetorical question) why do so many NPC's hate children?  Especially NPC's with children.

It's been a fun sequence of events, and we're not *quite* over the finish line yet.

It's crazy, right? If I could have crafted the traits for a bad mother, I couldn't have done better than Aurora, who is just a bundle of bad traits. Mean, Hates Commitment or whatever it is, Hates Children
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

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Offline Deme

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"The Sun Came Up" (4/10/19)
« Reply #127 on: April 10, 2019, 10:08:59 PM »
Chapter 38: The Sun Came Up

Arright, so, like, Kacie moved in an’ all, right? It’s just sorta…Takes some gettin’ into the groove of, dig?

“I know you explained your deal to me, but… Uh. You didn’t tell me about the secret dinner basement.”

“...Yeah, it aint real necessary as a thing, like, but it’s kinda, like, Mom’s thing? To just, like, have it all, like, very hip an’ wow; very dramatic-like, dig? An why shouldn’t she? It’s her groove. Just, uh, don’t come down when the door’s locked, you dig?” So, there’s Kite, hopin’ that it aint too crazy f’r her an’ she’d run for the hills an’ all. Mom went for, like, kinda a dungeon vibe up in the ambrosia table, an’ that’s gotta be creepy. Hey, wait, aint my birth certificate in the museum? Trip, man, did Kacie see that? There aint any real embarrassin’ pics or nothin’, right? Just kid-me, with, like, kid-me hair.

“Because she’s doing immortality stuff?” She asks, in a tone that’s got me breathin’ a sigh of relief. “Will do, but in the meanwhile, I guess I should kick back and enjoy dinner basement.”

“Right on.”

Ka-san’s bein’ extra welcomin’, too, since it’s kinda a weird sitch an’ all.

“Right now, we’re still working out where to put your bedroom; I hope you don’t mind the uncertainty, ha ha. The floorplan’s just a little odd right now,” I overheard her sayin.

“Oh, it’s fine. I’ll be in your never-sleep club, right? I don’t need a bedroom!... Besides. Maybe, you know... Uh, is it OK to say what I’m thinking, Mrs. Avyan?”

“Just Miko’s a-OK by me! Mrs. Avyan’s kiiinda boring, and it’s the sorta thing I’d wanna save for, I dunno, an evil parallel universe me who used her political power to rule the planet. But she’d be President Avyan, Madame. President, I guess. In an infinite multiverse, I guess I could have a mirror duplicate who’s Madame President and one who’s Mrs. Avyan, but for this dimension, it’s just Miko!”

“...Do you spend a lot of time on parallel dimensions?” She edges just a little away, which aint great.

“Not a lot, but it’s fun to imagine sometimes.” When Ka-san, who’s kinda got a bunch a’ brain-crackers rattlin’ around from loadsa sci-fi and isekai stuff, says that, Kacie sorta deflates in relief, so like, mission accomplished. “Of course, Madame President has a goatee. I’m old-school like that. Anyway, like how it’s just Miko, you can say whatever you like… Buuuuutttt... ” She glances back over at my door, which, like, unfair, man. “You might want to whisper it over to me privately.”

Kacie leans over an whispers somethin’ to ‘er, red in the face. An gettin’ redder as Ka-san laughs.

“...Oh plumbobs, I can’t believe you tricked me into thinking that was a good idea! I said that to Kite’s mom!”

 “Oh, don’t worry! I’m the mom who keeps a secret!” More gigglin.

“Forbidden words!” ...What did she say, y’know, in the whisperin. You guys. Did Ka-san tell a chunk a’ story recently? What did Kacie say that made ‘er wail like that?

“Don’t worry, don’t worry. It’s all fine.Listen: are you going to put any cool decorations in whatever space we scrounge up? Do you have bands you like?”

“No, no bands, really. Mom was never a big fan of music playing, and it was just too much of a fuss to be worth it. Maybe I’ll listen to a band.”

He had us eavesdroppin. Not deliberate-like, just kinda relaxin’ with Kacie. You know, just like some kinda new usual.

“Hm, anarchic beauty. Kite, if I explained everything I’ve done as anarchic beauty, would someone believe me?” Kacie asks, overhearin’ that riff there.

“I mean, belief’s kinda a strong word, but… Like what?”

“Like, say, that time I put frogs in my elementary school teacher’s desk. It seemed like a good idea at the time, and I figured no one would catch me.” That prob’bly weren’t the only thing like that, but eh, that mighta had some kinda anarchic beauty or something, maybe.

“...Didja get caught?”

“Yes, which is why we went to high school in another district. Which, now that I think about… Led me here, so I’d call that a really good bad idea. Past me was right and totally justified,” she answers with a chain-pullin’ kinda laugh.

“...Guess she was. Thanks, Past Kacie.” I mean, I donno if it’s really cool, but things gotta funny way of turnin’. Results don’t stop at a point or nothin, the world keeps runnin’ that water under the bridge an’ downhill f’rever. And… days like this… If a normal action sorta, like, a thing that goes on f’rever because descendants an’, like, the cosmic groove of the universe… Then I think days like this, are really gonna turn f’r a while. ‘Cuz it’s gonna be with me, too.

“Hey, Kite… Why did you invite me here, anyway? Not that I mind, because I do not. But people don’t usually do stuff like that. And I’m getting to the bottom of this!”

I shrug.

“Aint it enough t’ want you to have a chance to, like, find your own groove an’ be happy.” I’m kinda a little proud I got, like, an answer I wanna put out f’r this. Got it just untangled enough. “Let you get taken care a’ f’r a change, since you were always watchin’ out for Lily...Uh. Hey,” I suddenly gotta think on that sister a’ hers. “How’d she take it an’ all?”

“The good news is, Lily’s not mad at me. I mean, she was, but then she wasn’t, once she cooled off,” She was sayin’, before she got real quiet f’r just a second.

An then: “Are you sure that’s… the only reason?”

“...Yeah. I think it’s enough, aint it? It’s a big house an’ all. We got the room.” ‘Cuz right then, I back down. I think that there aint nothin I could tell her that wouldn’t go wrong, wouldn’t be too much, wouldn’t complicate stuff. Cuz don’t everyone deserve somethin’ offered without wantin’ something back?

...Trip, man, but maybe I was just sorta scared, too. She’s kinda got that headstrong thing like Mom, dig? An’ I know that this feelin… It’s sorta, like, f’r that personal Kite that doesn’t wanna do any a’ this business ‘r live forever ‘r handle that kinda pace you need to do a foot race with the reaper, dig? It’s cool if you don’t dig. But it wouldn’t be… It wouldn’t be cool if she didn’t. So then, I think I gotta keep it under the wig.


But she wilts a little, like the night air’s just draggin’ on her, even with that bitta spring cool that dies slow out here in Windenburg. An, uh, you gotta smack Kite if he misses that kinda thing, dig?

So, I think, Kite’s gotta own up. Much as I can.

“...There is one thing else, dig?”

“…Cuz ’ if you’re gonna run around tellin’ Kite that I bring you joy, just bein’ near you… Why wouldn’t I wanna stick on you like glue? ‘Cause even if that’s everythin’ – an I’m sayin’ it not like you owe me or anythin’, if I just wanted you to owe me, that’d be, like, the beyondest of square. Nah. It’d be awful –” Trip, I was ramblin. An there’s stuff I coulda said, too, an’ I didn’t. Because this is honest, too. I mean every word. “ I don’t wanna lean on you  or hit on or ask too much…But just. Your smile’s just so cosmic. Your smile’s a sun. An that… An’ you… matter t’ me.”

An’ just like that, it’s like it aint even night no more. The sun came up. She shakes ‘er head.

“…That’s not asking anything, you… That might just be the most wonderful thing anyone’s ever said to me.” Her voice sounds all chokes. She pats my hand, an the moment stretches out so it’s fine like spiderweb an’ just as soft. I don’t know what I gotta say. But she moves just a little closer, leanin’ across our hands.

An’ just then, we feel the first drops of rain, an’ that spiderweb snaps, leavin’ us as ends in the wind. We scamble f’r our umbrellas.

“It’s raining.”
“Yeah, dude.” I can’t do it. Trip, trip, I can’t. “...It’s rainin’.”

“...I think… We should head inside, I guess.” She sounds fed up as she storms on off. Can’t blame ‘er. ...Yeah. It sure was rainin’.

Ka-san and Maggie’ve been spending some nice time together lately. It aint hard to be proud he’s doin’ good.

“And working on an aesthetic! How cute!”

“An aesthetic… Yes, yes. I like the sound of that! Okasan, I’m working on an aesthetic!” He gives a dramatic wave. “An aesthetic’s gotta have color, right? I see those simstagram pictures tagged #aesthetic. But black and white alone are boring!”

“I’m with you, of course; I’m all about color, too.”

“Color-buddies,” says Maggie, noddin’ like he’s got a good wisdom there.

“Of course, honey. Color-buddies for life!”

That aint a sorta thing that’s goin’ anywhere, I just thought, like, dude should know, man. Dig how stone-cold cute my family is! Cute city!

‘Specially before I give you the stone-cold drag: Mrs. Munch, you know, that cat up the hill? She’s playing with ghosts.

Friend of the family an’ all, so Mom went down for her urn.

I didn’t really know Gino an’ all, dig? So maybe it aint my place to talk on it; it’d be Mom’s, that’s what I’m thinkin. ‘R the old ghost himself, ‘r Mila’s ghost, too. You never really run outta time -- ‘r, if you do, it’s slow -- to say a eulogy for yourself.  Still, not like they’re chilling here; so I feel like I’ve gotta say somethin, honor someone. But, like, it’s hard to boil anyone down to just one face, just a little thing, catch all the seeds someone grew an’ put a label on it, man. Maybe even mean, But the livin’ remember the dead, too, right, an’ they’ve gotta.

I get what Mom means a little: there’s no fairness t’ someone dyin. So this might be rough, dig? There’s a lot crammin’ in, an’ there’s no space fer me t’say, but… If I had to judge for myself, from what Mom did...

I think he’da been glad. I think they both woulda been glad. That in the end, they got t’be together like that.

Mom had t’ collect herself an’ head other places, takin’ a time to try an’ meet someone she’d read some articles from… Like, if you know what she wanted, you can tell me, right, dude?

Still, he weren’t home. Which left Mom frustrated as all get-out, mumblin’ about inconveniences an’ tryin’ to do things the right way an’ all.

“For once, I didn’t use the most efficient method, like a normal person, and look where it gets me! Banging on the door to a bad apartment. Let that be a lesson to you, Kite: sieze opportunities or force them into being. None of this ‘actually drop by hoping he’s in’ business.”

Sure, sure… Uh… Well… Mom was sorta on the warpath -- maybe she was more bent outta shape ‘bout Mila an’ all, after all… ‘Cuz she called up Maximilliano when she got home.

“Maxi, you’re out,” she says, like rippin’ off a band-aid.

“What?” He stands, sorta flabbergasted -- but mostly mad. Trip, max sorry, Max. It’s gotta sting. ‘Course, I was in class, so, like, second-hand report, dig?

“The club. I need space, and I don’t need you anymore.”On the plus-side, Mom’s prob’ly thinkin’ on Kacie some, too.

“But why?”

“Oh, Max. Max. I never forgot the dollhouse.”
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline Deme

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Chapter 39: Paintings by Monsieur Old Dead Guy

Sos, Mom’s gettin a little hem-hem, if you dig me, on the whole aspiration dealio. Trip, OK, so your pal Kite’s been a little, like, doin’ his own thing f’r a bit. But, there’s stuff I gotta do -- so: trip to the museum time. But I decide that, an’ everyone thinks it’s cool to chill at the pad! If Kacie hadn’t agreed t’ go, I’d be off by my lone -- oh. Ohhhh. Trip, that was pretty, like, cool of ‘em, skeedadlin’. I did not puzzle this one out at the time at all, so, yeah, might get a smile outta you there.

But I really was swingin’ there to have a peep at the paintin’s, dig? These are classics, and it aint right to say you know what on art if you aint checkin’ out what other folks do. It aint, like, the classics are so special, but that, like, an artist can’t get too insular, man. War takes, an’ so ‘the war’ll feed itself’ an all that jazz. But art don’t feed itself; art’s givin, breakin off little bits of the world an holdin’ it up so you see it, framed diff’rent how you see it while you’re, like, running the rat race, man, dig? But if all you see’s your own work, then yet chewin yourself up an’ tasting yourself, an’ it falls apart. Art’s for the oneness cosmic, so you gotta be out in the world a little, seein’ it, an’ seein’ what people think of it, an’ wool-gatherin’ yer own stuff.

An it’da been, like, real cool if I’d got all that in my head when I was talkin’ to Kacie ‘bout it, dig?

“And here we have,” she says while she’s lookin at this one, “Another painting by monsieur old dead guy.”

“Awww, c’mon. They aint flashy, but you got some real artstry here.” It aint like he picked bein’ an ol’ dead guy. I’m gonna be an old livin’ guy sometime, an’ it’d suck to be shoved aside f’r it. “Now, see, I kinda dig this one--”

“Because it’s a floral print?” She laughs a little.

“‘Cuz it’s a floral print. But also, like, the colors got a little cloudish glow to ‘em, like you can’t get ‘fr pictures, ‘cuz pictures got focus. “Kinda a rich fullness sort of vibe, dig, like a flower you’d get in a dream. That’s nice. I dig that. Snaps.”

“Huh… Like a flower in a dream…Kinda silly, but...I can let myself, right?” She murmurs, grinnin’ sort a’ dreamlike. I want a dreamy kinda world to show someone, I think; I could get lost in colors snugglin’ smoothly into each other like this, you know? But when she’s sayin’ that, I get thinkin’ on somethin’ else.

On another flower from a dream.

“I’d think a flower from a dream would be a little more bright, though,” she was sayin’ when my brain, like, came down from outer space.”Maybe purple? Or a mix of colors. Something that didn’t live or die with the seasons. You’d look and there it’d be, always.”

We were on a bench. We’d been sittin. ‘Cuz I had gone from upright to not, just sorta watchin’ her. Still,

“...You think? I kinda think a seasonality’s, like, real cool, Kacie.Like, it’s in-groove with the world, an’ it’s got its ups and its downs, just like… Well, everythin’. There’s, like, time for all of it, livin’ and dyin. A time to spring an’ a time to rest. It’s the definition of groovy.”

“Hmmm… Oh! What about the tropics? Take that, Mr. Seasony Space Prince.”

“Then you go dry an’ wet.”

“Hmph. I’m a big enough woman to admit when I’m beaten.” She says, all flouncin’.

“Awww, you know Kite didn’t mean it like that! Don’t get mad!”

She laughs an’ pulls me in.

“I’m not, silly. I’m not. Now, you were pretty quiet there for a bit… How was the moon, Space Prince? Did you make it to the milky way?”

“Aint we already there?” I gotta admit, I chuckled. “It was outa sight in kinda, like, a literal way, dig?I was just scratchin’ my dome on last night.”

An’ related things.

“...Huh. Yeah. Yeah, I have something I want to say about that, too.” She gets up pretty sudden-like.

“I’ve been thinking on this since last night, but… You’re so out of it sometimes, you get that?” She’s smilin when she says it, but ol’ Kite’s alarm bells? Ring-ring-ring. “Ugh, that sounded too mean, should have edited, but you understand me so it’s fine, right?”

“...I don’t dig.” Ahhh, knew I shouldn’ta pushed it.

“I guess… What I want to say is there’s nothing wrong with asking for what you want…” An’ I nod, ‘cuz I know she’s right, I just – it’s not somethin’ I can just say fer me. I mean, not right now, I mean – you dig, right? This crazy, far-out, perfect girl… She’s hurtin. It’d be wrong a’ me to ask her f’r somethin’ like… Just watchin’ her is enough. “Here, princey. Let me show you.”

Show me –
An’ then, suddenly.

She’s plantin’ one on me. Sudden like a rainstorm, heatin’ like the sun..Almost delicate, just a little soft touch that left my lips a little red. She pulled me in closer, her hand on my back.

“Do you ‘dig it’ now, Kite? This is what I want,” she whispered.

“I can dig it.”

Trip, right answer there, ‘m I right? The kiss she planted bloomed like wildflowers, an’ I’m totally swept off my feet. It was a smokin’ sorta kiss, like, just wild. I coulda just been carried into a meadow a’ gardenias, lifted on the scent a’ her bodywash; I coulda drowned in the sense a’ her. Stronger’n I thought, too, an… I just melted in there, dig, supported by her arms, groovin with the touch a’ her hands. She held my back like it was the world, an’ I wanned to be that. I wanted the whole world to stop, an’ we could fit all that jazz in that kiss.

Trip, man. It was some kiss. Sucked the breath right outta me.

“Haaa… That was… Oh, wow. I totally went in for the tongue on the first kiss. I did! I mean, don’t get me wrong, it’d defeat my point if I said I didn’t want to, just… I’m not trying to go too fast. That was OK, right?” She asks, tryin’ to catch her breath. “It’s fine,” she decided, in the voice she always uses when she don’t know what else t’ do. That way that kinda breaks my heart.

“...Course, course it will. Y’know why?” I reach out f’r an arm. “I know what I wanna ask a’ you. That cool?”

She nods, a little small at first, an then grinnin.

Peals a giggles fill the museum as I rain little kisses alon’ that soft neck. Everythin’ sparkles as she’s laughin’ in my arms. ‘R maybe that was the guy agin’ up over there, donno, man. Coulda been both. I wanna hear her laugh like that, like, forever, dude.

Nice, man… Think my head was spinnin’ a little when I stopped.

“So, this is it, right? We’re definitely boyfriend and girlfriend, none of this free love business, no just playing nice, no friends with benefits, no fake out ‘sorry, Kace, I think of you as my sister that’s why you’re living with us like a family, right?” She asks, still a little nervous, like ‘I’m cool to get a thing I want without just takin’ it, right?’ Now, I don’t really got an issue with, like, someone lovin’ many folks, but…

“Course. Like, I don’t got a lotta issue if folks are cool lovin’ whoever they want, but…I kinda wanna be a little selfish, keep a chick like you all to myself.”

“Good, because I’m not sharing while I’m alive,” she said, absolutely certain.

“Eeheeeheee! We’re dating!”

“We are!”

We both get so over the moon an’ maybe some other kinda cosmic spaces that, uh, the museum kicks us out. Trip, man, aint a couple in love an art?

We end up just chillin’ on the grounds ‘til this date, ‘cuz, like, this is totally a date, right, dude? Air’s a little nippy out there, too, an’ it seems like the perfect time t’ snuggle up.

An she says t’ me: “...I think I might be a little sorry. Just a bit, timing-wise. You were supposed to come here to look at art.”

“What cat’s sayin’ I haven’t?”

‘Ventually, we gotta head back. Homework’s waitin, an’ I’m all set, but Kacie’s still got some grades she could pull up.

An Mom’s seein’ to that with that punch’a hers.

“That’s not quite right; you’ve got to use the velocity formula for that one, first… You know... “Her eyes narrow.

“Yeah, Mom?”

“You look too happy for teenagers doing physics homework. Hmmm…” She grins. “Good job, kids. Good job.”

“...Somehow, I get the feeling that’s not the right response in this situation…” Kacie comments.

“It’s right for me, and isn’t that what really counts?” Mom answers, gettin’ a kind of admirin’ grin from Kacie in response. But… Maybe I kinda want to tell folks, like...Personally-like. Ka-san prob’ly already knew, I figgered. So, homework’s done, an’ I go to tell my right-hand man.

“Hi, Kite! How was the museum? Did they have anything cool?”

“Some. Some, kinda, you had t’ make cool. You’d prob’ly dig an art house in the city more, huh?”

“That’d be great! We should go, and I would like, at that time, to have a show! I will be fawned on!”

“Big words, man. Big words. I want an invite.”

“It will be done!”

“But, hey, can we riff in your room a tic? Got somethin’ to say.”

“So, like…” I lean on in an whisper t’ him: A girl’s got Kite! Kite’s got a girl! Somethin’ in that order!

“How wonderful! Springtime has at last sprung for my darling older brother! I’ll be rooting for you!” When he says it like that, you’d figger he’s got his way in the world waaay ahead of a guy like me.

“You got someone special in mind, Maggie?”

“I have the world in mind! And, I’ve got goals! I heard the news!”

“What news’s that?”

“You will learn soon. For now, the game is… Um… Afoot! That’s right!”

Heh heh heh. Good luck, bro.

I don’t get t’ find out on that ‘til the next day. Course, first, it was time t’ garden. It’s gotten kinda big, an school was kinda comin’ up…

So Kacie stepped up t’ help on out.

I told ‘er, “Sorry f’r the troubs… But it’s, like, mondo cool.”

“Aww, don’t worry about it,” she told me as she pulled up a weed. “It’s not that bad. Besides…”

“The view’s getting really nice.”

An it is. “Sides, there’s a pretty girl I’m wild f’r in it, and that is just some far-out knees of some far-out bees.

So, there’s Magpie, right? An’ he’s puttin’ his plan into action, like.

“Mom, I’d like to quit the scouts!”

“The scouts are useful,” is her first response. “What for?”

“The school’s getting a drama club! Can I, Mom, can I? I’ll be good and I’ll do great and you’ll get to go to shows!” He’s so stoked he starts tuggin’ at her, like he c’n just pull Mom to the drama club with him. Mom eventually just ruffles his hair. It’d be just his thing, doncha think?

“Well, I don’t know what good it will do, but go for it, kid.”


“Starting today, I am… A Thespian!”
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline BallerinaHippo

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Very accommodating of that random guy to age up and add sparkling ambiance to Kite and Kacie's date.  I'm glad you explained it or I would have been trying to figure out what social interaction you used.   ;D 

Magpie is as cute as ever.  I hope the Drama Club can handle him.

Offline Deme

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Very accommodating of that random guy to age up and add sparkling ambiance to Kite and Kacie's date.  I'm glad you explained it or I would have been trying to figure out what social interaction you used.   ;D 

Magpie is as cute as ever.  I hope the Drama Club can handle him.

I thought that might be called for! Once he started aging up, I immediately had to pause and try to swerve around the camera. For ambiance.

I'm really enjoying having Magpie around to write for -- he's at a reasonably fun place in my actual save, which... Uhhh... My backlog kind of got a little out of hand. Better try and do something about that!
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline Deme

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Chapter 40: Trustworthy Fake Rabbit a' Excellence

.So, startin’ off t’day, got some good news f’r ya!

Uncle Johnny’s been puttin’ enough moves on folks that now, it’s, like, an accomplishment! He finally got done all the serial romancin! Round a’ applause.

“Of course, no one’s ever expected enough of me, romantically, to get jealous,” he drops me that line. “And I thank all those wonderful girls for that understanding.”

That’s a guy who knows what he wants, more’r less. Power t’him.

So, I get home an’ catch Kacie starin’ at the little new addition we got here.

“Kite, why is there suddenly a ceramic rabbit in ou—Your garden?”

“Who, Stanely? It’s cool. We’re cool.” Look, he’s cool dude. Aint that a trustworthy fake rabbit a’ excellence face?

“...OK, that’s sort of more questions.”

“Donno. Teach gave ‘im to me. I figgered it’d be nice to see a happy face. Stanley outside, Ranger in, dig?” Someone’s gotta watch over the greenhouse, an’ bein kinda toys don’t mean they aint my pals. Ever dug that the real excellence’s the pals we made along the way?

“…That’s so cute. My boyriend’s so cute!” She laughs an’ buries her head in her hands.

Dude, I hope you came prepped fer sap.

Kace an’ I (gotta work out, like, a pet name or summin. Pook? ‘S like pooky, only, like, just a bit shorter.) sorta gotta make the mosta what time we got. The big Y-A’s tomorrow, an’ this’s all the time we got f’r a week.

“Kinda bums me out...Nah, that aint it. More edges me out, dig? Like, got a younger gal here an’ maybe I’m takin’ advantage a --”

“That is what I think about that, Mr. Avyan,” ‘s what she says when she stops kissin’ me. “I’ve got my act together, and, frankly, I think I’ve got a leg up on you in terms of not being taken advantage of! If I don’t stand up for you, you’ll just go lie in the flowers.”

“...It aint that bad.”

“Alright, alright. I just… Like bein’ sure, you dig?”

“I dig. It’s cute. It’ll be fine.”

“We’ll still find plenty of time together, OK? We’ll do garden work, or swing, or watch birds. You can even paint me like one of your French girls,” she giggles a little, an’ man, I do wanna paint her. Sunfall like this, glowin’ around her, air an’ sky soft as her eyes. ‘S real good.

“Trip, tha’s good… Kite don’t exactly got any French girls, though. Just you.”

“Well, I’ll have to make up the deficit, won’t I?”
“Aint nothin’ deficit ‘bout a far-out chick like you.” I wanna save that sight in a bottle; I wanna keep it f’rever an’ then some, like, when we’s all livin’ on the moon an I’m wanderin’ the moon an’ could see the springs a’ Jupiter an Mars, I wanna be able t’say: Look at this chick. Look at this moment.
“…You mean that, don’t you?”

 “’Course I do.”

“I’d be fine if you didn’t. Because I know. I’d be fine, so…” I just hold her tighter when she mumbles that.

“I mean it heart an’ soul.”

While we’re havin’ our kinda evenin’, Mom’s hatchin’ a scheme t’ fix up what she missed earlier.

“Hi, are you here for the meeting of the ‘Meet Salim Benali Club’?” Mom used the same sorta trick she told me t’do fer callin’ up Aurora.

“Uh, yeah…” Says Salim, standin’ awkward on the front porch. “Why exactly is it called that? I signed up because I was curious, but…”

“I’ll tell you! Let us call our first meeting to order. I’m sure it’d like a salad.”

“...What?” Poor dude’s never met hurricane Mom.

 “I acknowledge having met you, Salim. Can I call you Salim? Gonna do it anyway. Kestral here. Anyway, having summoned you to my home, I now disband the Meet Salim Benali club.” Mom grins an’ fires a coupla’ finger five-shooters his way.

“Ohh, you wanted to hang out. Well, I guess I’m game. I don’t get out of the apartment enough.”

“Except to foil me,” Mom mutters just low enough you gotta be tuned to her vibe t’catch. “No, nevermind that. Hanging out’s fine.” 

“So, you write, right?” She asks him.

“I wish. I think I mostly think about writing. There’s work, and the apartment always needs something, and by the time I get done all that, I’m too exhausted to work. It’s… really kind of pitiful, how much of my life I’ve wasted, wishing I just had the energy.” Poor dude. I know where Mom’s goin, but I kinda gotta wonder if it aint what he needs. Just… anythin.

“Huh...You know, it sounds like you need to get away. Dedicate yourself to your craft… Why not come stay here?”

“What do you mean?”

“I mean, live with us. We’ve got money for some nice, comfy chairs…” The mention a’ comfy chairs sends Salim hmm’ing all content, like riffin’ on a good meal. “No need to work, we can handle our chores well enough… Think about it. There’d be time enough for whatever you want.”

“That does sound nice… But why would you want to offer that? It doesn’t seem like I’d contribute.” He’s gotta pull himself outta fallin’ out over comfy chairs long enough t’ smell what Mom’s really about.

“Well, we’re something vaguely approaching friendsishness. I guess. But I would just want a little favor. Tiny.” Her fingers make a li’l gap. “Itty-bitty. I just need you to pump out some babies. Cute ones for preference. Mostly girls.”

“With whom?!”

“Whomever. I’ll set you up with some folks. Mostly local girls who are worried about not having anyone to pass their stuff to.”

Here’s where the dude balks. It’s, uh, kinda a big ask, Mom, you dig that, don’t you? But Mom just chilly delivers any big asks she’d ask fer.

“...Can I...think about this?”

“Sure, sure. The comfy writing chairs aren’t going anywhere.” Mom sees him off with a last twist.

That evenin’s alien night down by the docks, an’ it seems a happenin’ enough scene f’r Lily to call up her sis. An’ one way or another, we all end up goin’ down there.

Why me? Well, I’m, like, kinda there t’get shown off.

“Lily! Lily. Don’t tell mom yet, okay? But Kite and I are dating!” She’s sorta hushed, but, like, not very. I c’n hear her. Everyone can.

“What, really? Wow! Aaaaahhh, it’d be nice to have a boyfriend~” Lily squeals, the sorta erratic swingset a’ feelin’s swingin’ round to a happier glow.

“You’ll get one, one of these days. Don’t worry,” Kacie said.

“I’ll have one, and I’ll love him and hug him and call him George --”

“Will you only date a guy called George?”

“If he loves me,” she says, snappin’ outta it f’r a sec. “He’d be Ok with changing. Or she,” that’s just sorta said straight, so whatcha gonna say? Kacie just goes a-huh an grabs us a table.

“Y’think?” I ask her. “Would you be changin’ fer your Saint George, Lily my dude?”

“Of course! A rose by any other name would smell as sweet! But swear that you love me, and I’ll no longer be a Capulet! But…” She kinda pauses.  “I’m already not. So I have a head start! Besides, I can crush a fool.”

“You kiddin?” I ask. Kacie gives my arm a tug.

“She’s not.” She grinned an’ waved the talk offa that course.

Meanwhile, like, Ka-san’s still workin’ hard, gettin’ bro an I to fly straight.

“I don’t see why the drama teacher said I couldn’t improv the back half of the play. It’s not like my lines weren’t better!” Magpie, y’see, got into sorta a fuss. Not, like, somethin’ super big, he’d just kinda gone to the groove of his own drum, dig?

“Well, honey, it’s important to be polite and inform your team when you’re doing something like that, okay? You’re a party, you can’t split the party or everyone dies in a series of disasters!” K-san’s metaphor don’t seem the thing f’r this, but, trip, like I’m one t’ open my mouth on it. Maybe it’s kinda alike, but it just aint my jam t’get. Workin’ with someone’s bout anticipatin’ their needs, though, so I get that.

“So you think I should have apologized,” grumbles a this one artiste as a young kid.

“Well, yes...But I also think you should stick to your guns! Art is about improvement and collaboration! It’s good to add things sometimes, I think!” Mom fist-pumps mid dance, while the beat’s jammin’ out ‘round her.

“...Thanks, Mom. Alright! I shall try to be considerate. While I do whatever I want.”

“That’s the spirit!”

Back at out table, Lily and Kacie’ve been doin’ some catch-up f’r the coupla’ days we’ve had.

“Lily, you’ve been eating OK, right?” Kacie’s got kinda a worried tone, while Lily’s just sorta pacin’ around. “You didn’t forget, or decide putting food in your mouth is just too much work so you just laid in bed, right?”

“...Don’t worry?” Lily says, fakin’ a smile.

“That’s my line. You can’t keep doing that!” Kacie’s layin’ down the law, but that folks who worry sick an’ helpless do. So, that’s got me thinkin -- if she’s got that kinda problems, was tryin’ to help one folk at someone else’s cost? But it aint like it’s Kacie’s job. She’s a kid, too, you dig? So...I drum out f’r a second on what to do f’r helpin Lily.

“Hey, y’know, if, like, a meal’s a hassle to wrassle when life’s a drag an’ brainworms got ya bummed, what on popcorn?” It aint gonna rock the world, but if you turn one little section, trip, if that aint enough.


“Yeah. ‘S easy, quick, got a lot, kinda fillin. Like, it aint ‘xactly a meal, but if yer havin’ trouble jusy, like, havin’ a munch, then aint anythin’ you can get a W fer you? Gotta chow ‘fore you chow well.” I aint that guy, but Christian told me once -- he kinda gets that way, an’ when he does, it’s popcorn. And that’s real swell -- don’t you forget it, too. When gettin’ by is hard, every turn a’ the wheel’s worth somethin proud.

“...That’ idea! I’ll try it.” Lily nods, an’ I gotta hand it to my man Christian. Really came through for her, Dude. An’ me. “That’s a really nice idea.”

“Isn’t he a delight?” Asks Magpie, slidin’ on in. Trip, man, makin’ me red.

“He’s pretty okay! I can see why Kacie likes him.”

“Your sister’s a nice person, too.” Magpie nods, an Kacie an’ I realize we might be gettin’ kinda talked on like we aint here.

“They’re kind of odd if you don’t see them together, but they’re cute, right?” Lily gestures like she’s sellin’ us at auction ‘r summin.

“Right!” Magpie agrees.

“And if someone tries to hurt either of them, we fall on them like a pack of wolves for hurting our precious kids,” Lily says, like she aint younger’n Kacie an’ Me. ‘R like Magpie aint younger’n all a’ us. Trip, man, Magpie just eats that up, though.

“We have a pact, would-be sister-in-law!” Deal struck, they shake.

“...Don’t we get a say?” Kacie sighs against the sudden wall risen up. It aint worth it, though. Just smile an’ make chill with some good folks who love ya, girl.

Ka-san had somethin’ to chill with, too. See, she an’ Mom’ve both been workin’ on bein, like, Super Parents. An, like, Mom’s kinda issues sometimes aside, they are great ‘rents. But Ka-san was waitn on full-parent mode.

“Ah, you finally got it?” Mom asks, seein’ her lie down next t’ her with, like, such a satisfied kinda look.

“I did! I was talking to Magpie about his school troubles! Woo-hoo, what a rush!”

“Proud of us...Now a certain boy just needs to have a birthday tomorrow,” Mom says that, but she kinda, like, speaks up some? Like, I can’t age faster’n I can, you dig?

“We’ve done great,” Ka-san said, proudly layin’ her hand over Mom’s.

“Of course we have. We have myself, a couple of great kids, and you, all the way,” Mom says, slowly reachin’ to take hand in hand. Ka-san giggled.

Once we got outta our own little groups, we got t’ really enjoy some Alien Night. Even saw a couple, just chillin’ at the bar! ‘s pretty fun to see. Sure, it’d be back to, like, everything the day after -- big day then -- but it was good havin’, like, a big night out.

Still, that day, weeds were a-waitin. I got Kacie t’ help again, but my own weedin’s kinda gettin’ quicker… Those things got kinda a kickback, so you gotta, like, take it easy, dig?

Weeds done, crops watered, reward: given.
“Thanks, Kace.”

“I was glad to. But I don’t mind sneaking in a couple of last kisses.”

We aint the only one feelin’ sweet in the outdoors that day, dig?

But I’ll pretend I didn’t know nothin’ on Mom and Ka-san’s special spot. Gotta be respectful, but I figgered you already knew, dig?

But, f’r this one, one last kinda thing! Salim came ‘round, just ‘fore school got rollin. (Trip, man, couldn’t even skip my last day!)

“...I admit, I’m not really certain… I’m not the most social guy… But I’m in.”

“Fantastic! Fantastic! We’ll help you move. You won’t regret this, Salim,” Mom says, pattin’ him on the back while she showed him on in.

“...Yes. I believe that. Of course I do.”

Gotta talk t’ the ol’ guy later. Put him at ease an’ junk. But we got him set up pretty nice. Got some stuff from his old pad, got some new stuff, got him a chill attic room, dig? Peace an’ quiet.

Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

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Offline Deme

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"A Truth Universally Acknowledged" (4/29/19)
« Reply #132 on: April 29, 2019, 04:17:31 PM »
Chapter 41: A Truth Universally Acknowledged

Aint school days a drag? Well, this one was my last, so seeya, teach! An' there was still stuff t’ mention, at least.

To get kinda a soce-practice, Akira called up an’ ol’ gal-pal a’ his, Justine.

“I hope you two get along, and can help each other out,” Akira says. “I’m going to get up and walk away to keep myself from exploding from the awkward and-slash-or having my brain attack itself about this image.”

An’ he made like an egg and beat it. I think he means that, it aint like the importance a’ someone bein’ his ever, like, really left. But it’s somethin’ he fights, now, dig? Even if they aint actually his anymore. Habits take work, not just science, dig? So, time to just kinda chat a bit.

“It’s nice to meet you. I’m Salim, I… Think very hard about writing fairly often,” he offers, with a shrug.

“So you’re a writer?” She asks him, leavin’ an opening.

“...I think very hard about being a writer fairly often.” A good-natured, but kinda sad chuckle’s, how it was kinda relayed to me. Man, dude! Put some faith in you! But it warms her over.

“Hahaha, that’s something! I kind of get what you mean. It’s hard to act on what you want sometimes, right? But I’m sure you can do it.” Her hands reached across th’ table f’r his, but he kinda laughed nervous-like an tried to make scarce.

“Thank you! I’ve cut out a lot of things from my life, so I’m hoping to do some work.” He at least got his eyes set on, like, the thing he wants, dig? “I mainly think of myself as a poet, but I’ve sort of been wanting… I’m not getting any younger. Even if I didn’t do much with my life, I’d like a record of it.”

“That sounds interesting. I’d like to read it… But I bet you’d like to write it.” She grinned. “But Akira said you need help talking to women?”

“Well, not talking. I’m not afraid of women. But flirting, I’ve never really flirted.”

“Alright, stand up. Pretend you’re meeting me. Deliver your best line.”

“...Uhhhh…. Hi. It is a truth universally acknowledged that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a pretty lady like you.”

“Ahaheehee...We can keep practicing. Let’s keep practicing.”

Part a’ that practice was gettin’ a new look. Groovy, right?

Once school got out, I had some business afore the party got started, like.

“Hey, Maggie. You know my kid’s club-type thing?”

“Yeah! I do. Are you looking for my assistance, now that you’re aging out of it?”

“That’s right. Whole thing’s yours now, so I hope you’ll rock that scene, my dude.”

“It will be rocked.” Seein’ him all puffed up an’ excited gets me grinnin’.

Kace pulls me over an’ kinda sits me down.

“There’s a movie on, and I want to see it. You’re watching.”

“Well, there’s a prophecy you can’t throw down with. Lead the way.”

The flick’s kinda not my jam, a big action flick sorta dealio. Big explosions. But, hey: you know what’s great to watch? A great chick snugglin’ you on the couch.

“You know, if this movie were about the lady scientist, it’d be ten times better.”

“Yeah, like, sorta checkin’ out the world an’ the aliens an’ all?”

“That’s right! Fighting the good fight with her field, that kind of thing. The world’s more interesting than anything else in this movie, but we waste our time.”

“Hmm, yeah. It’d be nice f’r, like, that kinda budget on somethin’ where maybe she’d show those cats, like, what she’s for. An’ you open your heart an it makes a difference, man.”

We nod, an’ when it gets to sorta the final battle, head on out.

We gotta enjoy a little somethin’ in the sun, before we get on in the high gear.

Time grinds ever onward, slippin’ faster an’ faster when it goes by. It moves on a pace that, like, we control when we think on it -- but then, we aint got no control. It carries on somewhere we can’t reach all the way, like your heart beatin’.  Only real clock there is, ‘cause time’s, just, like, an illusion of that beat, you dig?

So let’s get this party started!

“Hi, honey! Hi, Kacie!” Ka-san sits on down at the outdoor table. “I just wanted to check in. Are you nervous?”

“Ehhh…. Naaah, I’m, like, good, Ka-san. Little bummed, since I know I gotta work f’r the man.” The man, man. I wouldn’t tell Mom, but Ka-san’d just sniff it out. “But it’s cool. I got a plan.”

“Oh? Let me in on it!” Ka-san nearly bounces outta her seat.

“Probably gonna paint a while. Maybe someday I’d, like, open a shop or somethin’. If it aint too much bother, like.”

Ka-san nods along.

“I think it’ll suit you. The hours get pretty lax, too, so you’ll have more time to yourself, from what I’ve heard,” Kacie says.

And aint that a pretty picture?

“Bonnie! How are you doing?”

“I’m doing alright, dad. I’ve been thinking -- it’s still cold at night, and you’re not getting any younger. I’ve seen your sleepwear,” she says, scoldin. Uncle Johnny smiles kinda like a sheep, if you dig me.

“It’s not that bad… But why bring it up now?”

“I got you a sweater to sleep in. It’ll be warm, and you won’t be half-dressed if we come by, and that’s really important.”

“Awww, honey! If that isn’t just…”

“Oh, I walked into this,” she sighs.

“The cat’s pajama’s!” An’ the old man swans off, chucklin’.

F’r party games, cards is sorta the winner that day. You know who aint a winner?


“C’mon! Aint a birthday sim gotta have good luck?”

“No one has ever said that.” Kace tosses down a queen while she talks.

“Sorry, Kite! I remind you that I got lit on fire on my birthday!” Diya says, pickin’ up the trick.

“Trip, yer onto that! Guess Birthdays’re no-luck kinda days. Gotta put some luck into the future, like a luck-bank, maybs?

“...A luck bank. I hope I’ve got something invested,” Diya mutters t’herself.

“‘M sure you do. You got the trick, right?”

“I did!”

OK, game’s done. Cake time.

“A one, an’ a two, an’ somethin a little more!”

A cheer goes up as I’m rockin’ a new age group. Not like it’s a huge diff’rence, anyone coulda told I Love the Outdoors. Mom and Ka-san’s efforts, like, paid off big time: people’re sayin’ I got a good character, but… Trip, man. I aint real sure it’s much t’ brag on.

“You’re being too modest, Kite,” Hob says over cards, when it kinda runs that way. “I know better than anyone how hard you’ve always tried to be…” He waves a hand. “Amicably acceptable to all.”

“Alliteration. Groovy.” We fist-bump, like bros, ‘cause when your man lays down a line, that’s somethin’ to respect.

“And non-troubling. Why not take the credit and enjoy the perks?”

“Perks?” I ask him.

“Yeah,” Bonnie interjects. “For example, increased job performance. Just flinging around the word ‘responsible’ is enough.”

Huh, thought I. If that wouldn’t just get the work done faster…

“Yeah. Mom tried to work on my values…” Carla’s breath snags somethin, an’ I reach out to pat ‘er arm. Hob follows up, like, but Bonnie kinda just smirks at us softies. “Well. Anyway, but everyone always said I was incorrigible!”

“...Aren’t you the one that steals things?” Bonnie says, raisin the stakes on the game.

“Not that you can prove.”

“You know, my mom always said ‘I did a good enough job, no one’s in prison yet.’ But, come on, Mom,” I heard Mom sayin’. Trip, man, I aint really got a grip on my Granmas. It’s a thing no one’s got a word on. “You don’t go to prison as a teenager.”

“It seems a weird metric, though. Like, ‘ohhhh, as long as they follow the law, that’s all that matters.’ It’s cruel! That’s not how you tell if you did a good job as a parent at all!” A little ring a metal an’ porcelain goes out; Ka-sans cake slice got stabbed with some *force*.

“How would you evaluate that, then? I’m approaching my own Young Adulthood. I’m rather curious,” Yaritza says.

“Wellll~ First, do they know how to keep themselves safe? Do they feel okay? Did you treat them like people, not things? Can they tell if things about how you raised them were hurtful?” She flicks ‘em off on her fingers, one by one. “Things like that. Being able to be happy is important, and feeling loved by you is important, too!”

“...Huh. That’s a pretty decent list. I’ll add ‘Do they have the resources to chase their ambitions’!..Heh.” Mom grins. “I guess we did alright.”

“I think we could have done a little better in some ways, but don’t all parents?”

Huh… Yeah, I’d say they’re alright. There’s some stuff a’ Mom’s I aint too fond’a… But she did her best, an’ she does great in other ways. People aint perfect -- parents aint perfect. They’re get thumbprints on your glass, even if they’re tryin’ real hard to keep that clean… I wonder if when you grow up, like, f’r real, is when you realize that? Trip, man, when’s anyone really grown up? When’s anyone anything?

“You’re grown up when you can drink the sort of juice mom works with,” was Magpie’s first answer when we ended up chattin’ on it outside. “And when you can make your own image of yourself, fearless, against the world! Or! Or!”


“When you can drive alongside a beach road in the sunset, the rims of your wheels flashing in the golden light, in beautiful red convertible! When the wind’s in your hair, that’s when you’re an adult.”

We both consider it. I aint real sure I’m a convertible type. You sure we aint got electric? ‘R somethin you can, like, give a groovy paint job to.

“...Besides, the town aint givin’ out licenses in, like, ever.”

“It’s a state of mind, rather than a literal vehicle.” He says that… But, trip, man. If my little bro don’t look a little bummed.

Near the end a’ the party, we head on up, jam out to games. Ka-san’s still the best at this! Those aliens don’t know they’re comin’ or goin’ when she’s got buttons to press. When the party was dyin’ down, Mom came over to see me, last.

“I got you something, too… We’re on another leg now, so let’s keep our heads up, okay, Kite?”

“Got it, Mom.” Yeah, we do. This aint gonna be too hard, right?

“You’ll do great. But this! Is something my research into vampires turned up. Handy for cures… But also, it’s a flower that stays blooming the whole year. So you’ll always have something green.”

“Gee, Mom. That’s a far-out bloom we got goin’ there. It’ll be nice, gettin’ that rooted down. Seein’ what we can get rollin, poppin’ out in the winter.”

“Right, right! It gets so gloomy...And? Kite? I’m proud of you, kiddo. You might be the best thing I was ever a part of.”

“Trip, Mom… You’re gettin’ all the waters workin’.You got me all pumped up now.”

I tried doin’ a little somethin’ with my hair now. Got some new duds, that kinda thing. Not bad, huh?

Kace and Ka-san each got some new stuff, too. Diggin the hair heaps, Ka-san, an’ Kacie’s rockin’ both the looks she’s got, but, like, that’s kinda just how’s it is.

Anyhoodle, I better get rollin. There’ll be paintin’s for work an’ the museum an’ all, but… It was my birthday. So that one’s just f’r me.

Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline Deme

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"Do I Need a Sliding Scale" (5/6/19)
« Reply #133 on: May 06, 2019, 05:11:22 PM »
Chapter 42: Do I Need a Sliding Scale

Someone said ‘keep a journal, it’ll help you get your thoughts together.’ They’re plenty together! They’re just kind of messed up. Everyone’s are! But I still want to work on them, where they’ll be, I don’t know, laid out here? More real. Not something I have to hide from my mom. So. How do you start a journal?

Well, my name is Kacie Hildalgo, if posterity happens to be reading this. Posterity should stop reading this, because I might just use it to talk about how I want to rub my face all over my boyfriend’s chest forever. Just FYI. It’s so frustrating! He’s right there, he’s super cute, but he’s also older than me. And that makes it ‘immoral.’ They don’t understand true love! Heee heeee heeeeee~ I get to say something like that!

Speaking of true love, I saw the absolute most cavity-inducing thing today!

Miko and Kestral (Miko said Miko’s cool. Kestral hasn’t said anything, but it’s way too early to call her ‘mom,’ even if of course her puppydog of a boy’s going to put a ring on it. Besides, she is the most agressively hip person I know, so.She’d probably want Kestral, maybe even Kes, right?) were talking during the party, and I happened to overhear. ...Does that make me a busybody? Well, it’s fine. I’m fine.

“Isn’t it wonderful? Our firstborn’s all grown up…” Miko sighed dreamily.

“I think it’ll be more wonderful when he starts finishing things,” Kestral answered. I could have given her a piece of my mind, and maybe I would have, if she hadn’t have added, sort of reflectively, “But no, he’s done great. And Magpie’ll do great… And, come to that, we crossed an aspiration off! Not bad!”

“Sure did!.. But. You know, Kestral.”

“I know many things… You wouldn’t happen to have a goal in mind?”

“I do! Our golden years are ahead of us…” She waxed.

“Some of us, anyway,” Kestral added under her breath, allowing her comment to be talked over.

“We’ve got a little more free time… Aaand, well… I always wanted to have a great romance! A love for the ages! A ton of smooches!” She pointed dramatically. “I will not be denied!”

“Hmm...Well. Who am I to deny you? I might want to save Soulmate for someone… But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get the chance for all the smooches I stole when I whisked you off your feet.” With a satisfied smile, Kestral pulled Miko on in. “Sorry, Ulrike. Our best friendship has done its job. I have a real best friend to get to.”

Friendship ended with Ulrike Faust. Now Miko is her new best friend. We were all thinking it, and through what must have been a tremendous force of willlpower, Miko ended up just saying,
“Let’s enjoy some time together!”


Sweet, huh? … Would I like something like that? Well, maybe. It’s complicated. I definitely want it, I just want that to not be the only thing I want! And, long-term, it kind of would be.

For example, I wanted to make friends with Carla and Bonnie at the party, because it is impossible to make too many friends, especially when you’re living in a new neighborhood.

So I started asking them for neighborhood tips.
“Now, what you need to remember while you’re living around here --” Bonnie started off with, before she got interrupted right away.

“Someone keeps a water balloon bucket uphill, like, behind my house? It’s great, and it’s going to get hot enough to use soon!” Carla burst in with a slightly more enthusiastic report for all that.

“...That is true,” Bonnie said, a little more frustrated than I think she gets with her assortment of half-siblings. (I am not sure how I’d feel with a family that big. It’d kind of be nice, but also a lot of work. Family’s a bit of a mixed bag sometimes.)

“Thanks for the tip, though. Really! That sounds like a good spot to get away from it all.”

“It’s great,” Bonnie has to admit. “You and Kite would probably have a lot of fun.”

“Ohhh, yeah… That’d be a wonderful lover’s lookout. All alone, past the road, a firepit beside you... “ Carla sighed dreamily, and I couldn’t help but join her. Wouldn’t something like that be nice? I’ll get it one of these days.

I saw something I probably should put down. I saw Magpie in one of the fancy rooms for Kestral’s whole thing. Kite used to be a brunet as a kid, FYI. It’s so cute! But that all probably wasn’t what he was looking at. I wonder if he knows? Does he know? I don’t think so, because he said, very quietly,

“...What a foreboding room. Yes, foreboding! That’s the word for it. And puzzling, which is less cool.” This was Magpie quiet, so basically a stage whisper, low and full of feeling. “...I wonder why Mom made so many rooms such as this.”

Technically, Kite’s done with school, so he doesn’t have so much rush to get the garden done in the morning anymore. But his hours are shaky, right? So I’ll keep helping him out. I’ve got his back.

Oh, yeah. I heard something crazy that went down when I was at school. There was a woman over, Luna Vilreal? Something like that.

And she was basically just over entirely so Salim (the old guy who also lives here now for some reason because I guess we’re all just stray cats or something) could knock her up. Wow. That’s a little crazy. And I do mean entirely, because she is reported to have said,

“This doesn’t need to be romantic, I’m not looking for flowers and chocolate.”

“Right,” is what he said, which sounds to me like the flat answer of a guy too nervous to live. “Right.”

“I just want a legacy… And maybe not to live on that island all alone.”

“So come here. Let’s make it worth our while.”

Which, like, for doing something weirdly business-like, the sweetness of the objective aside (Though, well, it’s not like adoption is really a problem or not having a legacy. Love adopted kids!) is pretty steamy.

Anyway, dear journal, I skipped out of half of school today. It doesn’t really matter, right? I just decided I wanted to leave, so I left! I’ll be fine.

OK, I guess I didn’t ‘just’ decide to leave. I mean, I did. It seemed like a good idea at the time. But I really just wanted to get away from everyone. From those teachers that don’t understand you, from the hassle of doing stuff that doesn’t matter, from wasting my time doing work that won’t do me any good!

What’m I going to do now, anyway? What do I want? Who am I, really? I’m fine, of course, just… I feel sick. Like, I am of course going all-in on this relationship because I love this boy and also I want all of his attention and also I want just run my hands through his hair and have him kiss my neck until my whole neck is just an entirely different color from the rest of me. But also, and less happily, I know I am because I’m always going to do whatever’s in front of me right now. Because that’s what I’ve got. And that’s great and will hopefully result in a lot of pampering, but also, not as great in terms of being someone in the long run.

And I tried laying some of that out to Kite -- no, really, I really am trying to be open, here, and he’s a great listener, once you get used to the fact that he’s sort of tuning in from outer space. But I guess he can see stuff in the heart better out there.

But when I did, and I saw that little worried smile, I had to add one thing:

“Don’t try and fix this. You can give me advice, but… you don’t have to break your back about this.”

“That aint ‘cause you’re still spooked on lettin’ a dude in or tryin’ to get a hand, huh?” He asked me. We ended up walking from the front yard back into our own space, gradually moving into the cool shade.

“No, no,” I told him, which was maybe a bit of a lie. But it was also true. “Because it’s not your responsibility to make me someone. I want you to -- to care about me as I am.”

And that took a load off of his shoulders, and he smiled, and like it was easy as anything, he said, “Absotively posolutely, dude.”

So of course I had to steal a kiss.

“Y’could look at other folks. ‘Course, that aint always gonna help an’ all, cause you gotta run where your needle’s pointin, and not just fall to the man, you dig?”

“Of course! You don’t have to worry about that! But what sort of examples do you have in mind?”

“Well, aint we got a world full a’ cats an’ chicks an’ dudes?” He drummed his fingers on the table, until he counted it off. “‘S like that even when there’s that personal sorta you, that’s kinda livin’ somewhere where maybe you don’t always getta show that, I also think, like… Some cats get their inner eye ‘I’ when they really getta share it with someone, maybe?”

“Like, take Uncle Johnny. Chillin’ with his kids, like, as we speak. I don’t know the whole hist’ry, like. But even though he always had his dreams, he kinda… found himself when he really started carin f’r them kids, those folks he could really let inta his life.”

“He does seem to have them over a lot.” Even if I think I hear the older set and the younger set arguing about the movie, with brief, intermittent bursts of groaning at his punnery…

“An, like, Uncle Akira -- trip, man, I was there for that, too.”

“He’s with his girlfriend tonight, right?” (He was. They had a nice sleepover. She apparently thinks this house is comparatively quiet. I do not want to know the madhouse in the Haas-Faust part of the neighborhood.)

“Yeah. But, like, I think it wasn’t just, like, meetin’ Ulrike that helped. An’ I’m not gonna take much credit, neither, maaan. ‘Cause he wanted somethin’ different. He got that drive to change somethin, stop tearin’ him up, you dig?... And he got that when Ulrike an’ he had a real talk, just the two a’ them as two souls in the world.”

“But let’s flip the hand around, dude,” which, accompanied by a gesture, made me laugh. “Cause I think there’re folks who like wanderin’ with what they do, an’ that gives ‘em meanin. Taste new tastes, like, catch the tunes, see a big groovy cosmos. That kinda rad thing.”

“Like Miko, right?” She’d told me earlier she was going to start trying to refine her singing some, but I can’t help but wonder if there isn’t kind of a wall there. I’m pretty sure song lyrics aren’t acceptable, for some reason.
“Yeah. And Mom’s, like, Mom. She’s sorta a shark, dig?”

“I think so… And what about you? I mean, I know you’re worried about not getting time for yourself… But what would you call that ‘self,’ what draws you to him… I guess.” It’s a lame question, but it’s important! Kite’s the one who started talking about this.

“Aww, y’don’t wanna listen to me jab on about --”

“I do.”

He grins.

“Trip, Kite aint got a thesis… I just try an’ do what seems right, you dig?” He hesitated in that way of his, sort of staring off into a distance. “...When I’m doodlin’, ‘s like I’m tryin’ the hold somethin’, dig? Tryin’ to hold somethin’ somewhere far out, tho, like, it could just be at yer face an’ all. An I want someone to catch it through my lenses, an’ hear what I’m sayin’  in paint. That’s what.”

And I can’t answer anything to that. I don’t have anything I really want to communicate in a long-term sort of way. But it’s a lot to think about.

I’m not sure what Kite was trying to communicate in that picture he did of a bird by the feeder -- but it was beautiful. A masterpiece, even, and Kestral was all “Ohhhh, this is going on the museum! Until you can make a pricier one! Look at this bird! My son made a fine bird!”

Honestly, I think she was happier with the quality than he was!

And I just sat and thought by the fire. How do other people do this so easily?! I should be able to get a grip! I have a better one than some people, I’m not my sister, I’m the sister who has it together, but! But! I want to feel satisfied with stuff after I make a decision, and not just before. I don’t need big, take-over-the-world dreams, but I should have some!

I should have been able to not catch things too on-fire, too, but no dice. But, hey, on the other hand: I didn’t burn the chairs down, so that’s me: 1, forces of nature: 0! That’s the way it oughta be.

So, I heard something while checking out the attic, which is basically a couple of little rooms and a hallway. It’s pretty, pretty boring, all-told, which is not what I was expecting from this family’s attic. I mean, they have a secret dinner basement that looks like a medieval dungeon.They should at least contain one crazy old woman they locked up there.

It has Salim, which probably doesn’t count, and his bubble machine, which also does not count but might bring everyone a little closer to counting. It also contained Kite this time.

“I’m just not sure how I feel about all of this,” Salim was saying. “What does this say about my sense of ethics? That my body can be bought and sold for a really comfy chair?”

“Duuuude,” Kite answered. And, after a puff of bubbles that took a basically infinite length of time, added,” Bodies’re just, like, things, man. They don’t gotta have, like, the moral imperative patched on f’r whatcha do w’em.”

“Doesn’t that path merely lead to a life of libertine excess? A bottomless pit of excuses, forgiving any action, as long as it satisfies carnal desire?” He waved a hand, delivering this grand pronouncement as a poet on stage might, with the emphasis placed in deliberate ways. It’s a shame open mic night’s never catered to writers in our neck of the woods.

“Not any, man. But if it aint hurtin’ no one, aint that the thing? Like, sortin’ everythin’ on good an’ bad by what’s kinda pure and what’s kinda grody, what’s, like, hip or what’s square? Man, that’s just fallin’ f’r the trap a puttin’ ideas over people, you dig?” Kite considered the flavor of bubbles. “What matters is what you’re down for, what you’re cool with -- an’ you give someone the same chance, dig? But if you aint on for what Mom’s askin, I’ll back you. You don’t gotta follow The Man, man!”

“...I think calling Kestral ‘the man’ is a good way to get your nose broken.”

“Not a man, man. That’s a bad scene. The Man. Capital T, Capital The Man.”

Salim nodded as the distinction dawned.

“...Thank you… Thanks. I’ll hold up my end of the bargain, but… Within reason, I think.”

“Good. ‘Slong as you’re cool, dude.” Kite nodded and blew another round of bubbles, quietly watching the line rise up into the air and pop, one by one. “Man, aint they just the moon y’see at day?”

“...Perhaps so.”

I hoped writing that last part would make it make sense. It did not.


My mother. My mother. My mother.

My mother called me up to dinner at the diner today. I was not psyched.

“What do you want?”

“I just want dinner with my daughter, that’s all! You don’t have to be suspicious of your own mother!” Which means she probably wants someone to talk to about a new ex. I didn’t like the last guy anyway. Ok, ok, lay it on me.

What she wasn’t expecting was that I brought Kite. And she was now also less than thrilled.

“I wanted a nice meal to patch things up and check on my precious girl, and after all this, you decide you need to invite your sugar daddy.”

“Hey again, Ms. Hidalgo,” said Kite, because that was what she had said instead of ‘hello.’ I think that was a sarcastic one? Maybe? Maybe I can help this boy get in touch with his inner snark? I’ll count it as progress anyway.

“I understand. Young love is exciting! But you’re setting yourself up for a hard fall if you rush in too fast. You didn’t rush in, did you? Promise me that.”

“It’s. Fine. Mom… Please don’t call my boyfriend a sugar daddy. He’s a part of my life. I don’t want to exclude my family from my family, alright?”

But it’s Mom. And so this is going to be difficult.

“I’m only saying. I thought I loved your father, but when I got to really know him, I saw what a sort of man he really was. A deadbeat who left me alone and confused and burdened with a kid who’d kill my chances of finding love. And then again, even! No offense, Kacie. I know you try your best, like I have. I’m just calling it how I see it, to protect you.”

“Not. Helping. If you came out to say all of this, why didn’t you just leave me alone?” Which isn’t exactly what I said. I said it with maybe 200% more forbidden words. Maybe more than 200. Do I need a sliding scale?

“...You’re right. I’m sorry,” she said, in her making up voice. And I kind of hope she is. I mean, she did call me out there, right? “I usually leave people, not the other way around. It’s hard for me to accept… But I do want to be a part of your life. And any granchild’s, provided they disinfect first…” Which is standard for her and kids, it’s not a special layer of dislike, probably.  “I’m a little worried about it, and once I start worrying…”

“You run your mouth, I know. I forgive you for now.” Maybe this time, since I’m away from home, it’ll stick. I keep hoping that one day, she’ll approve of me. I don’t know why. I’m pretty smart, so why am I so dumb about her?

“So, uh, Ms. Hidalgo…” Kite decided to try and segue off this whole thing. His feelings must have been super hurt, but he was still sticking it out. “I don’t really, like, know your kinda gig, dig? I’m doin’ paints an’ all, but I was wonderin.”

“Well, right now I’m an assistant manager, but…” And she goes on about her long history of job-jumping. Her dot-com days. Her brief stint as a journalist. That time she worked on cars, of all things. Things settled down. It was actually nice. I decided I am not into journalism.

“Thanks for the save,” I told him at one point.

“Aw, it aint a thing.” Still, we were able to get dinner, and leave, and I was able to do something important, too.

“Kite?...I’m sorry my mom was so hostile to everything. It’s not fair to you, and I know that was sort of a disaster.” Even if he says it’s nothing, that must have hurt, and he shouldn’t have to pretend like it doesn’t. I shouldn’t have had to pretend like it didn’t. “And I might have gone overboard, too, throwing fuel on that. So I’m sorry for that.

“You didn’t, Kace. It was kinda rough, but, y’know?”

And he leans in and plants a kiss.
“Bein chill’s my bag, it don’t gotta be yours. Yer the one it really bugged… But I think you were pretty cool tonight, dig?.”

That boy.

Well, that’s all I wanted to say for now. It’s been a busy couple of days. Maybe I’ll write again sometime.
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline MarianT

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"Do I Need a Sliding Scale" (5/6/19)
« Reply #134 on: May 06, 2019, 07:01:14 PM »
Look forward to hearing more from Kacie. I'm not sure I want Kite getting in touch with his inner snark -- he's so sweet, and that's rare. And Kacie's got enough snark of her own, like when she said that Kite was a great listener when you got used to the fact that he was tuning in from outer space, lol.
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Offline Deme

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"Do I Need a Sliding Scale" (5/6/19)
« Reply #135 on: May 18, 2019, 02:28:08 PM »
Look forward to hearing more from Kacie. I'm not sure I want Kite getting in touch with his inner snark -- he's so sweet, and that's rare. And Kacie's got enough snark of her own, like when she said that Kite was a great listener when you got used to the fact that he was tuning in from outer space, lol.

Yeah, I doubt he ever would; and I doubt she'd really want that to go too far, just... Maybe a little more spine on her sweet, sweet boy. Kacie was a fun character to write from the perspective of; I'll have to see if my frankly absurd backlog has any other good sections for her.
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Offline Deme

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"That Cat Frost" (5/18/19)
« Reply #136 on: May 18, 2019, 02:29:19 PM »
Chapter 43: That Cat Frost

Sos, Ka-san’s B-day was love-day. An, like, our schedules got kinda wild. Schoolday (Love Day’s, like, a Friday), a bunch a’ grind days, so catching a few ticks f’r the festives’re kinda a thing. But we did get a chance t’ gather up in the mornin’.

“Alright, one! Two! Three!”

“Congrats, Ka-san!” I’m shoutin’ while the confetti rained.
“Ugh, backache.” I guess it takes ‘em hard. Better get my prep on, f’r eventually. “The hair’s not bad, but I really want to get it re-dyed, heh heh.” Ka-san fiddles the sharp edga a’ her bob, but while she’s sorta just standin’ there, a python a’ the smoochin’ strikes.

“Your hair is fine,” Mom said ‘fore she stole another kiss. “You look great.”
“Yes, yes,” Ka-san said, laughing and poundin’ her fists like she’s throwin’ a hissy.  “But I still want that pink! Teal’s no good for me!”

“Of course, of course,” Mom answered. “Get your hair dyed, and I’ll be waiting outside. It’s love day, after all.”

And that meant vistin’ their fav’rit spot on a top-a-the-mornin’ date. Mom told me somethin’, later; I guess it was prob’ly on her mind then, like.

“When you’re young, you think you want someone beautiful. But things like that are temporary, right? But they’re not.Time passes, and you spend it with someone, and you get the chance to see every second you’ve spent, written on their face. That smile of conspirators that belongs only to you. And you realize: beauty is something you share with someone. It’s something you find because you want them. It can go forever.”

Those little times where, like, Mom really dig deeps, really thinks personal, I kind see someone a little diff’rent. We got stuff in common, kinda; just happenin’ in some other place, at our own sorta times.

But spring is sprungun up all over.

‘Course, Kace an’ I aint got much we can do f’r Love Day, even with Mom, like, makin’ concessions in our fam’s trads f’r those times when there aint no one in our lives, like.

“But I did wanna give this t’ ya. It aint the best flower I got, tho; that’s… That’s you.”

“Awww…” She takes it an’ leads a hand on the edge a’ the flowers. “That’s so sweet. And also corny, but mostly sweet.”

“Hey, Kite… Do you have a perfect date?”

“Tuesday, second week a’ Spring. Coupla’ days back. It aint too hot, but it aint too cold, neither,” I answer. The sky’s got that good high blue goin’ on, everythin’s gone full green… It’s got that potential, you dig? The flowers are burstin, some slow-burnin’ flames that’ll carry late inta the spin, some fireworks that fizzle out in just a day’r two. “An you got that green, you dig? ‘Nature’s first green is gold,’ an, like, I aint big on that cat Frost, but he got a clock right. Not, like, literal gold, dig? Not a gold-green, like you get in Fall, but, like… Precious an’ little an’ glossy-like. ‘S a green yer sad t’ say goodbye to, but if it stuck ‘round… You think it’d still be nice?...I guess I do.” I wanna think stuff that sticks aint bad. Like, that sorta summer green, after it, that’s not a bad green. I think it’d be kinda sad, if it was somethin’ you only liked ‘cause you couldn’t keep it. That’d mean you didn’t really like it at all, dig?

“Kiiiiite….” She chuckles an’ snuggles on up. “Not like that! I meant a date you’d go on with, say, me.”

“...Hmmm… You got anythin’ you want? Cause this’s just right f’r me. Just you an’ me an’ a cool spring air an’ all.”

“...Same. Except with more kisses.”

“I’ll deliver a heap a smooches f’r the job.”

We were actually, like, all’a us, out a’ the house then. See, Akira’d gotten a ring-up. An why not spend a love day w’ your girl, huh?

“This is nice.”

“Yeah, it is. The estate’s maybe a little stuffy, but we’ll make our own fun,” Ulrike says.

‘Cause we’d gone out to the Von Haunt’s old digs, dig?

“I’m really happy you called me out today, you know,” Akira says. It weren’t that long ago he’d just sorta snuck back inta her life an’ all. Maybe, deep down, he was a little scared she wouldn’t. “I wouldn’t want Love Day to go by, even for a second, without the person I love most.”

“...You’re in a mushy mood,” she says, but with a smile. It aint like she minds.

“It is love day, after all! What good is it if you don’t have a romantic fancy!”

There aint too much there, so they end up talkin’ an’ flirtin’ over chess.

“Do you know why I love you?” Akira asks her at one point.

“Because I’m beautiful and we have similar taste in tats?” Kinda a joke, but kinda sincere. “I do always love yours.”

“Your taste in tats is great. And you are always beautiful. But… It’s more than that.” He laughs. “Better. Even if it’s a selfish reason… I love you because you got mad at me. And you talked to me and wanted better. And...Until then, I hadn’t thought of love as something that pushes you to be better.”

And those weren’t lines; there weren’t nothin’ insincere ‘bout that.

“It’s not a bad sort of love to have, really. It makes me sound cool.”

“Well, obviously,” he answers, with a chortle. The game don’t really mean much.

“Happy love day, Darling.” Uncle Johnny’s got a couple a’ old flames here, an’ at this point, it’s just sorta a sweet hello an’ a little festive cheer… Or… Summin. Whatever makes folks happy, right?

But let’s give it up f’r the ladies that show us all how it’s done, dig?

‘Cause of course they aint callin’ their love day done w’ just the post birthday date! They run off t’ some corner a’ the estate.Private enough I kinda missed some of it.

So, uh, ‘pologies mega for that, my dude… But I think it was prob’ly reminiscin’. A lot a time’s gone by f’r ‘em; not just sorta external-like, where time happens, but in, like the eternity you get when you feel somethin’ real strong. I did hear somethin Ka-san was saying, as they lay up in some little garden all their own:

“I think the clouds remembered their shapes from when we met, don’t you?”

“I barely remember them. I had a pretty girl to look at, so I was only kind of paying attention…Though! Hey! That one’s a cocktail glass with an oversized umbrella, though.”

“It kind of is!” Ka-san laughs. “I think it’s sort of a brain-slurping elephant demon! Or a Funyarinpa!”

That gets a laugh from Mom, too, until they’re rolled up close in the grass.

“I’m not falling for that! I’m not falling for that again!” She stops, an they’ve gone real quiet f’r a tick. “I’m real glad I’ve had you with me, every step of the way.”

“Me, too.”

An’ that felt like time f’r Kite to skeedadle cooly, dig?

Once Kacie had to split, I ended up just takin’ pictures. They got some radical gardens out there; been honed from centuries a’ folks carin for the place.

An I even caught sight a’ one of the local ghosts, paintin’ all alone up on the walk. Wonder if he’s thinkin’ a past Love Days.

Closer t’ later -- well, aint we all closer t’ later, my dude? All the time, reachin’ fer a time that’ll never really be here, it just dissolves, like, gentle as a dream into the present. But it was some flick time.

“Relying on love day only for romance will bite someone, sooner or later. I’d rather it not be me,” ‘s how Mom put it. “I’m not really into sappy movies, though.”

“You can’t fool me! You get all misty-eyed whenever an anime gets all sentimental about friendship,” Ka-san interjects.

“Impossible. I’ve never once cried at an anime friendship speech. Who needs the power of friendship when you’re not using it to power immortality?”

“Trip, Mom. All’s you need is love. ‘S a swell thing, just by itself, bigger ‘n you can pen in, small enough you’ve always got it on ya once you have some,” I point out. The flick’s kinda a big group piece, lotsa dudes havin’ their own love stories. Suprised Ka-san weren’t gonna insist on somethin; it aint like there’s no flicks romantic a’ the animovin’ kind.

“Well, later! Later! But for now, I’m not hung up on the particulars. I just want to snuggle with my boys.”

“Ohohoho,” Maggie laughs kinda like he’s been practicin’ it. A stage thing, kinda. “It’s the same! I’m overflowing with love for my dear family!”


 When the flick’s windin down, I kinda got to wonderin’. Maggie’s still a kid, sure, but he’s kinda, like, been watchin the cats around him. An I think we all sorta got an approach to love…

“There someone you sweet on, Magpie?”

“I am sweet on the world, dear brother!” He announces. Round a’ applause, good answer.

“In particular-like?” I lean up on him, grinnin’ like I gotta put the pressure on.

“...Well, I have an intended for a flower today,” he says, sorta secretive. “If she’ll take it.”

“Good luck, bro. You got this.” I give ‘m a little nudge. He does, like anyone’s gonna turn my kid bro down.

“...Kite.” He asked, after a long quiet where it was just the credits rollin’ by. “You love Kacie, right?... Do you think you’ll ever love someone else?”

“...Donno.” I don’t got a plan to, anyway; don’t think I could. An… I don’t think I’d wanna, like, when we’re a thing, dig? “She’s my main squeeze, you know. Far-out chick like that… Wouldn’t wanna hurt her or nothin. But time’s long, dig? I aint gonna say what’d happen, far away…”

I sigh. I don’t wanna think on it. That’s somethin’ I can’t stop an’ I can’t change. I just wanna make this time, in the time a’ the heart, last good an’ long as I can.

“...Do you think it’d be wrong if someone did?”

“Love, if you do it right -- an you got ‘em like your dudes, an’ everyone know’s what’s what an’ that’s cool an’ you know it’s cool, f’r real, an’ everyone can really say that… Then, I don’t think it’s gonna be wrong whatever it looks like.”

An’ Magpie smiles t’himself. All ya need’s love in a world like this.

Kacie decided t’ plant ol’ cuttin’s from that daisy I gave her… Back then, when things sorta clicked together.

“I want to be able to keep an eye on it. I want to see it grow… Something like that,” she adds, with kinda a sheepish grin.

“Sure, sure… Hey. You know… If you wanna… Whenever you wanna use my pad, you can. An… It c’n look like stuff you want, too.” I offer her, kinda nervous. When’s too soon f’r stuff like that, anyhoodle? Didn’t she, like, sorta already move in? ‘S that creepy?

...But she don’t have to live like it aint her place, neither.

“OK. Ok. I can do that. I… might have had a few ideas.”

An we do a big ol’ overhaul from there. Furniture flies. Up goes a couch t’ sit on, an’ a new shelf, and Kacie’s makeup. Just a hint more pink.

‘S a pretty groovy pad. Just the right amount a Thing t’ it all, dig? Like, there’s a gap b’tween just, like, a house, which’s sorta made a walls and rooves an’ folks livin’ in it, and a pad, which, if you dig me, is all on the essential Thingness of it, as a cool place where you’re you an’ you can just chill.

“Maybe we’ll get a fish,” she adds, puttin’ the bowl on the table at the bedfoot. “It’ll be nice and green and homey.”

“...Yeah. Sure is.” Homey, huh? Yeah, I think whatever sorta pad we wanted, it’s pad-like cause it’s our home.
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline BallerinaHippo

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"That Cat Frost" (5/18/19)
« Reply #137 on: May 25, 2019, 06:59:34 PM »
Happy elder birthday to Miko!  I'm glad she got to keep her pink hair (that gray and blue just wasn't her).

I loved Kacie's chapter and I also really like her makeover of Kite's room.  She's a nice grounding influence for the Space Prince.  They work well together.   :)

Offline Deme

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"That Cat Frost" (5/18/19)
« Reply #138 on: May 31, 2019, 03:54:12 PM »
Happy elder birthday to Miko!  I'm glad she got to keep her pink hair (that gray and blue just wasn't her).

I loved Kacie's chapter and I also really like her makeover of Kite's room.  She's a nice grounding influence for the Space Prince.  They work well together.   :)

I do enjoy them very much, and I'm *really* proud of how that room came out. There's a few more tweaks to it that happen here and there, but it's great!

(It isn't, but that hair in general is just such a cool hair for Miko. I'm very pleased with the streaky options in Get Famous.)
Stories In Progress:
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Offline Deme

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"Live from My Keyboard" (5/31/19)
« Reply #139 on: May 31, 2019, 03:57:45 PM »
Chapter 44: Live from My Keyboard


And that’s another one for the wall. You know, I’ve got enough experience with hanging pictures to know that the framing business is kind of crazy. “Hello, I’d like to get an object simply to hold a more valuable object while I hang it safely above my bed.”

“Yeah, that’ll be 5 million dollars and you’ve got to go on a treasure hunt for a spot in your wall to hang it.”

Everything about it is expensive and complicated! Half the landlords I’ve had would rather I just burn the wall down than try and put a nail into it! But then again, framing is a pretty niche part of our economy; most people have gone digital these days. I’m practically a savior to an entire industry! And that’s not too bad… When you frame it that way!

[Hold for applause and/or heckling]

Thank you! Johnny Zest, I’ll be here all night, whether you like it or not!

So, after catching up with a few ladyfriends, I end up inviting my daughter Hande, Hande Holiday -- alliterative names sure are hande-y to remember, aren’t they? -- over to spend a love day afternoon with her old man. Give her mother a break, which might be the best love day present I’ve ever given anyone.

“Ready to have fun today, sweetie?” I asked her.

“Yeah! ‘S a good love day!” She tells me. And I start worrying -- all children now look like babies, and all teenagers look like children. It happens when you’re old, the way not understanding why people like new music happens. Is she too old for me to need to shield her from any little kid valentines with the fierceness of a papa bear, whatever my instincts on the matter say?  The answer is no, but I had pause there.

“Why’s that?”

“Heeheeheee, ‘cause I love daddy!”

[Wait, expectantly, for an aww]

But I didn’t come here to brag about how cute she is. I came to gush about how cute she is. She’s like a handy cotton-candy Hande! Perfect in every way!

But if I could be sincere for a moment, that kept hitting me. See, when I look back over my life, I realize something: I’m kind of awful. Not my jokes, those are great! But I mean, as a person. I’ve woohooed with more women than I can count! But not more than I can multiply! And they’re all great, and aside from the occasional meet-up, they all mean nothing to me. Totally average. I’m just there to get sum. My math education’s kind of a mixed bag, isn’t it, folks?

So there’s that. And then there’s my parents, and my brother, for that matter. My parents are dead, and I didn’t even know when it happened exactly. Just, ‘oh yeah, those people I cut out of my life so I could be here looking at this sea of handsome but poorly-lit faces are dead now, and I’ll never see them again. Ok, what’s for dinner?’

And then there’s these kids. Each one kind of like me and each one completely different. Perfect -- even when they’re not. Pretty much just by chance and constant horndogging, I somehow stumbled onto the love of my life…

...Dad jokes.

“Alright, now, can you name something brown and sticky?” I asked her in a totally sincere effort at building a vocabulary.
“Uhhh… Uhhh… Pancake! I like pancake.” Now, that was a good guess, and good on her.
“And… A stick!”
Sometimes, teaching kids to talk is derailed by my sense of humor, but there are ways to get things rolling again. For example, I shared the best way to remember your vowels: What did one vowel say when it was saved by another? “Aye, E! I owe you!”

You guys needed a double whammy after earlier.

Speaking of things that are corny and a bit mushy -- besides creamed corn -- there’s someone in the house right about now who might just be working on the whole ‘love of his life’ thing. And not much younger than me, either.

”A rose I find too quick to fade;
A song’ll vanish once it’s played;
And I could shower you with praise
If it would keep you all my days --
If gifts are love, we soon will part;
I beg you, hold me in your heart.”

With apologies to Salim Benali, of course. I’m a roses-red violets-blue guy, but really, I’m more of a ‘he makes me laugh’ guy. If it’s good enough for Roger Rabbit, it’s good enough for me.

But Justine Ellsworth -- man, I remember when she was a teenager. Isn’t that a scary thought? Time needs to cool its jets; we’re not going anywhere if it wants to hang out, have a beer, stop causing people to go to college while you blink. She found it sweet.

“Ohhh, that was good!” She claps. They’re doing flirting lessons. That’s what they’re calling it these days, I guess.

“Thanks, I worked on that one for a little bit. I think it could be longer. Maybe a sonnet.”

“That would be nice, I’d love to hear it,” she told him. “You’ve really improved. You’re not making Pride and Prejudice into a pickup line anymore.”

“I panicked!” He laughed, though. “...But it sort of turns out there’s not very much flirting in this whole affair.”

“It’s all business, rather than pleasure.”

“Correct, essentially.”

She turned and just looked at him.

“What would this be?”

“...It’s always pleasurable to speak with you,” he answered. I mean, if someone likes my comedy, I’d like that, too. That’s why I keep coming back here to talk with all of you. That and the money. So I can see why he’d like a girl who likes his poetry, age gap or no. So, time to muster his courage! “...I really do like to spend time with you.”

“ as well.”

“I might go a little further, maybe. I might say...that I love you,” he offered, nervously.

“...I’d like that.” she edged a little closer, shyly.

“I might go a little further.” But once you’ve gotten past love poetry, you’ve gone as far as you can go in a relationship, really. Like, you give a woman who isn’t sure about you love poetry, that is frightening. He was basically walking backwards!

But sometimes, that’s a step in the right direction.

You know, I heard that in bed, she’s lighter than air; he’s having a hard time keeping up with her!

So, while most of the love day shenanigans died down, there’s still a couple of things worth saying something about.

Kacie had decided to do something I’ve got to say I’ve never really considered: put in an extra mile for her boyfriend.

“The flower was good, but I want… I want to make something special.” It’s a flowery sentiment after all.

“It’s a first bouquet, so it’s not that fancy,” she told him. “And it’ll wear out pretty quickly. But… I wanted to do something nice for you, so you can just acknowledge I’m great already!”

“Yer great already!” Perfect, beautiful, stepping on my line.  “These’re some groovy blooms, Pook.” He looked them over, a sappy grin spread across that boy’s face. He looked at them with real happiness -- she’d arranged the flowers, but I don’t think she arranged that.”They got a lotta heart in ‘em, I dig that.”

“Ah! Well, you know… I thought I’d stretch out a little. It was pretty fun.” She was beaming. And then again, “It’ll be sad when they wilt, though.”

Now, Kite’s a kid who can go pretty quiet sometimes. And this was one of them. He looked at them for a moment longer, and then reached over.

“Don’t get yer wig flipped ‘bout that, you dig? They’re wonderful. Flowers wilt, an’ wonderful don’t, dig?”

“Ha! You’re taking this so seriously…” She laughed, but nicely. “But I’ll make some more, maybe. A lot more! I’ll bury you!”

“You’ll plant me, even!”

“It’s a lovely blossom I’ll want to spend some time with.”

Now, see, I had to tell you about that: that’s some good material! Oh, well. Speaking of stepping on my lines…

“My darling Reiko, please, accept this flower as a token!” Magpie delivered that line with such aplomb. I’m a little worried the kid’s picked up some lessons from me. But, hey, might as well learn from the master!

“A token?... I don’t think the Bowl-o-Rama would trade this for a prize.” That was another good one. Kids these days… Grow up so fast!

“...Are you being serious?” Magpie asked, pouting a little.

“Sorry, you can say it again.”

“My precious Reiko, rose of roses, treasure this flower as I treasure you!”

She looked shyly down at the flower, and, without adding more sass, took it.

“Thank you. It’s really sweet.”

Kids these days…And, frankly, not kids these days.The house is full of people sorting things out, which leads to odd little vignettes like this one.

“I’m trying to figure out… I don’t know. I think Kite would call it an aesthetic or something. You’ve lived alone, right?” Kacie asked Salim. It was an abrupt question for an abrupt meeting.

“It’d be a little odd if I hadn’t… Well, thinking about that, it’s not really fair. But yeah, I have for a long time now.” If I had to compare the two, personally -- Salim did not weigh in, so you’re stuck hearing my thoughts -- living with others has a lot more going on! Companionship, frequent loud groans of exasperation, a captive audience if you’re willing to lock a few doors... Of course, a kid like Kite’s pretty much never going to live alone. And Kacie neither, for that matter.

“How did you decide what you wanted things to look like?”

“...Eh. I mostly just put things I found wherever I dropped them. I think while craft is something you build, aesthetic is something like a stew, and develops over time. You’ve got a very retro look already.”

“...Huh,” she said, looking down at her dress.

“Now, can I ask you something?” Salim asked.

“Go ahead!”

“What do young people these days like? What do girls like? What impresses them.” That’s a big q   uestion, isn’t it folks? I’d guess a press! For a writer type, that’d be a printing press!

But then the door opened.

“...Why is everybody having this chit-chat in my room?” Poor Akira, coming back to a home invasion! It’s his fault for having a home, really. And a room with a computer, no less. Those things really have changed the game. I mean, now people can go online and just find bad puns! In my day, you had to work for them!

To close out the day, I was having my older kids over. It’s really been something, watching them all grow up. Mostly, it’s been long!

You ever wonder what people did before they invented dartboards? ‘Hey, Ogg, stand there so I can throw sticks at you! It’ll be a good thing to do while we’re drinking!’

But there we were, playing darts in the bar. My score was pretty good, gotta say -- until Hob comes along and gets bulls-eye after bulls-eye! And then that’s it, because bulls only have so many eyes!

But I’d been sitting on something all day, really. Something maybe not so nice. Something I’d been meaning to tell them. So then I made the teensy, tinsy, critical error of bursting out right in the middle of the match:

“Oh, my heart! How can you do that to a dying old man, just upstage him in a bar game!”

And all three went pretty still. I think Ulises made a noise only audible to dogs, so of course I heard it perfectly. Bonnie ended up being the first one to say anything.

“What? You’re joking, right?”

“Aaahh. I meant to tell you earlier. Should not have said it like that.” This is going to be rough, I thought.

“...Dad,” I think Hob figured out I was being a bit serious first. “I think you should say it now, while we’re together.”

“...I heard the news today. It’s my first notice, so, time to get affairs in order. Better make times like this count!”

“You should. What do you want to do?” He asked.

“Exactly what I’ve been doing. Just thoughtfully,” I told him. Because, really. My affairs? I've always been fine with those being out-of-order. But stuff like this is what really matters to me, right now.

This probably isn’t going to be a routine, is it? Maybe parts… This might just be me sorting things out the best way I know how. Well, thanks for listening. Live from my keyboard, I’ve been Johnny Zest. You’ve been a beautiful and imaginary audience, goodnight!
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline Deme

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"Live From My Keyboard" (5/31/19)
« Reply #140 on: June 03, 2019, 05:23:10 PM »
So, I'd like to ask a question. Someone posed to me that shorter updates I could push out more frequently might be easier for you to comment and faster for me to produce. Is that something ya'll'd be interested in?
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Offline kattiq

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"Live From My Keyboard" (5/31/19)
« Reply #141 on: June 04, 2019, 11:12:55 AM »
Hey! Just got finished reading the dynasty story and I love it! I also love the way you write each character with their own personality. (Also love the dad jokes so keep them coming!)
I can tell you spend a lot of dedicated time and add so many details to your stories & it's lovely!

As a new reader to your story and a fellow story writer, I hope its okay I add my input- I would say it might be easier for you to do the shorter updates and to keep track of which part of the story you have told (I sometimes forget  where I'm at if I'm busy with RL, lol!)
I personally like to ride the line right in between and keep things at a medium consistency. But I've had to shorten my story telling for my own personal sanity because sometimes I find myself spending more time trying to write a story rather than playing (maybe I'm the only one?)

But regardless, you do what you enjoy doing/writing and I will enjoy reading either way!

Offline Deme

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"Live From My Keyboard" (5/31/19)
« Reply #142 on: June 04, 2019, 06:52:51 PM »
Hey! Just got finished reading the dynasty story and I love it! I also love the way you write each character with their own personality. (Also love the dad jokes so keep them coming!)
I can tell you spend a lot of dedicated time and add so many details to your stories & it's lovely!

As a new reader to your story and a fellow story writer, I hope its okay I add my input- I would say it might be easier for you to do the shorter updates and to keep track of which part of the story you have told (I sometimes forget  where I'm at if I'm busy with RL, lol!)
I personally like to ride the line right in between and keep things at a medium consistency. But I've had to shorten my story telling for my own personal sanity because sometimes I find myself spending more time trying to write a story rather than playing (maybe I'm the only one?)

But regardless, you do what you enjoy doing/writing and I will enjoy reading either way!

Thank you very much for the feedback, and for enjoying the story so far! It's a lot of labor, but it's a labor of love! (As for spending more time writing than playing... There are phases. But I also have, like, several hundred screenshots worth of buffer. I'm in no danger of overtaking myself. Present-me's currently worried; Gen 3's about to be a teen, and the kid I liked most for them might be gone due to elder relatives dying. Boo.)

Anyway, I think smaller updates will be fun; I doubt they'll get *too* much smaller. I'm still wordy, and I don't intend to sacrifice detail. To show off what I'm thinking, here's an example!
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline Deme

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"Solar Punk's In" (6/4/19)
« Reply #143 on: June 04, 2019, 06:54:14 PM »
Chapter 45: Solar Punk's In

Once ya, like, boil out all those sweet love day happenin’s, things settle to their usual groove. Usual as it gets, anyhow, y’dig me? Like, it aint real normal, probly, but it’s what we got, an’ mostly, I dig it.

An, super mondo dig how cool Magpie’s gettin! He’s finished up Whiz Kid, just, like, on the lark! Well, like, Mom wanted him to, like, which kinda lifts the spririts, dig? It aint somethin’ she asked only a’ me f’r the work… ‘Course, then I had to wonder, hey, y’think Maggie’s OK? Sometimes you gotta check up, even if y’ve asked before.

“Ah, don’t worry! I’m excellent, as always! I like hearing Mom say I’ve done well, and it’s nice to have everything squared away. My birthday’s really soon!”

Now, he’s got himself a point; it’s no time at all ‘till then.

“Besides, who doesn’t enjoy ominously bubbling liquids with our free time?”

“Sorta like a mad-sci kinda vibe? I dig, I dig… Your club doin’ somethin’ with that?” I ask him.

“Ah! What a genius bit of inspiration! I should recommend it! Even if the teacher never likes my improvisations!” He pumps his fist in, like, the purest of ‘citement. The evil scientist laugh was just burstin’ out, too.

“Maaaan, what a drag. Fight the power, Maggie.”

Mom’s really pickin’ up her fishin’, too. But what kinda catches me is, even though she’s, like, got the skill for it, an’ the time for it, She doesn’t wanna finish off that fishin’ aspiration.

“Why not?” I asked her.

“Efficiency. Sure, there are free-for-all aspirations, but I want to consider: what if someone down the line is attached to fishing? Why should I limit them? As our options close, I can wrap it up or not,” she said, shruggin’.

“Yeah. Maybe onna these days, I’ll swing on up. I’m down to fish.” It’s somethin’ to think on. I got, like, a lot I wanna learn, but it aint like I need t’ worry on how t’ get there now, you dig? I like stuff best when I can just move where the groove takes me, you dig? Just take it cool.

Uncle Johnny had Nicholas an’ his baby sister Leanne Walsh over; kid’s a child arready -- trip, man, kids are startin’ to grow up faster already, man. Time’s sorta trippy like that. He got his pic updated an’ everything, too… That only left one more, so that kid got an invite over later. He just got old enough t’ come. Hold up, dude, though. ‘Fore I show off the kid an’ all, there was somethin’ funny I gotta spin f’r ya.

“Alright, I’m going to try some material for a child-oriented routine, and you tell me how it sounds, alright, Nicholas?”

“...How is that different from just talking to you, Dad?” Nicholas asks, adjustin’ his glasses.

“That’s what makes it a routine!... Oh, man. That’s good.” Johnny chuckles.

“If you’re doing that, why can’t you judge this?”

“Man, you could really go into a two-man routine, one of those *Man*-zais, even. I get where the man comes from, but where’s the zai?” He grins, but Nicholas aint bitin’.”Wordplay based on misunderstanding languages is out, huh?”

“Yeah, I didn’t get it.”

“OK, then! Alright, so, here is the secret all adults keep from you: We have no clue the answer to at least half the things you ask. My kids come and they ask ‘why is the sky blue?’ And I could look it up, but I remember my dad, and how he always pretended he knew the answer. And I want to do that for my kids! So I look into their eyes, and I come up with the best answer: Because it’s in a bad mood!”

“Hee hee. That’s bad, Dad.”

“You’re laughing! You’re laughing!” He teases, as the sound a japes an’ chuckles fill the house.

So then, he had Dario over. Cute kid -- cute, cute kid.

It was a long afternoon where he watched over the kid. It’d be hard t’say if he’d get a chance f’r a better pic, an’ older pic, but this one’ll do pretty nice.

He only leaves t’ go to work...An’ he comes back havin’ completed a life-long ambition, here where it’s cuttin’ it close. Where it counts, you dig? It’s somethin’ I’m really prouda him for. My man! Uncle Johnny Zest! Top-a-the-line comedian!

An’ we got the other big thing down, too.

The wall a’ pics. All 19 kids, photos taken, toddlers an’ adults alike. It’s a big thing, aint it?

“Be sure to hold onto them somewhere, alright?” He asks me an’ Mom, as we all sort of look at ‘em together.

“Of course!” Mom waves a hand. “They’re a proud accomplishment! Maybe a spot in the basement… It’s a museum of sorts, too.”

So, that night, the Christian an’ Gulliver invited some folks over f’r a bit. Kace an’ I came, ‘course, ‘cuz she’s always tryin’ to make better friends w’ folks. Carla came with, just to hang at their pad.

“Living in the city must be nice,” Carla says. “You have some really nice stuff.”

“Ummm… You’re not planning on walking away with some of it, are you?” Christian looks worriedly. His folks are gettin’ up there, but they’d definitely notice, like, a whole missin’ vase or somethin.


“Yeah, but that means you gotta, like, put back whatcha took fr’m the mail slot.” I was just gonna get it back an’ return it quiet-like, so it weren’t a drag on no one, but…

“Carla!” Kacie laughs. “Wow, brazen. That’s a federal crime, you know!”
The dog magazine gets put back in-place, an’ we just spend a while, like, chillin’ out. I think Kacie made, like, better friends, and it aint like they aint my pals, neither.

It kinda bums me I couldn’t get an invite f’r Magpie. But they both got hung up on a kid runnin’ around with the city at night.

“I’ll have to practice for next time!” He insists.

“It aint like we went dancin, though.” Not that his moves aint killer, dig? Like, that’s some work’n all.

“Next time, maybe we will! Or sports! We could play basketball!”

“...Arright. How ‘bout on the light side, my dude?”

“After my birthday, then! Perfect! In the meanwhile, I’ll have to dazzle the household!”

Give ‘em the ol’ razzin’ dazzin’, my bro. His birthday’s got one other thing goin’ on, a real, like, secondary buzz, you dig? It’s prank day. Which, like, not really my jam, but I’m down, f’r, uh, maybe some kinda little mischief. Nothin’ much. Specially not compared to some folks…

Uncle Akira came down in a mood. Sorry, dude.

“Why was there grass on my keyboard?” He asks, more t’, like, the open universe. Anyone who got an answer.

Mom starts. “The rise of green tech is on the upswing.”

“You want to be eco-friendly,” asks some brother, puttin’ up all them actin’ skillls. “Right, Uncle Akira?”

“...Not if it’s on my computer!” He wails.

“Solar punk’s in, Akira. Besides, I need the planet to live on until we colonize space.”
“You want me to have a future, right, Uncle Akira?” They both, like, turn on him with the biggest eyes. Trip, man, I’d be weak to this move. So weak, you dig? How’d you do, dude?

“Fine, fine… I’ll go green. How do you even use a green keyboard?”

He wanders off an’ Mom and Magpie high-five. Like, sorry, dude. Maybe I’ll help him. Take care a’ the keyboard. It’s kinda cute.
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline kattiq

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"Solar Punk's In" (6/4/19)
« Reply #144 on: June 04, 2019, 09:39:16 PM »
@Deme  I like it! That episode was a perfect length :D
Funny thing, Akira is probably one of my favorite townies. In one of my families he married my sim, they were the perfect couple and he was just so chill. Sadly I lost that save due to a technical error, but every time I see him in the city I almost get him married again to my current sim. haha
I also really hope that the Gen 3 plan works out for you! Nothing worse than losing/can no longer find the sim you needed!

Offline BallerinaHippo

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"Solar Punk's In" (6/4/19)
« Reply #145 on: June 05, 2019, 03:00:11 PM »
Longer or shorter, I'll keep reading either way.  Whatever works best for you.

I love all the pictures of Johnny's kids.  That was a nice little side project.

Offline Deme

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"Solar Punk's In" (6/4/19)
« Reply #146 on: June 06, 2019, 04:23:39 PM »
@Deme  I like it! That episode was a perfect length :D
Funny thing, Akira is probably one of my favorite townies. In one of my families he married my sim, they were the perfect couple and he was just so chill. Sadly I lost that save due to a technical error, but every time I see him in the city I almost get him married again to my current sim. haha
I also really hope that the Gen 3 plan works out for you! Nothing worse than losing/can no longer find the sim you needed!

I was not initially planning something like this -- it's not the first reading I had of his traits. But after going down this character read out of spite, I found myself really enjoying it. I love this dumpster fire of a man The Sims 4 and I have made together. Maybe one day, I'll do another game and I'll try and do something nice for him, he's a good sim, ha ha.

Longer or shorter, I'll keep reading either way.  Whatever works best for you.

I love all the pictures of Johnny's kids.  That was a nice little side project.

Thank you very much! And yeah, it really was a fun project.
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Offline Deme

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"Not Merely a Serial Philanderer" (6/6/19)
« Reply #147 on: June 06, 2019, 04:26:37 PM »
Chapter 46: Not Merely a Serial Philanderer

Aaaah, Summertime! The cold has gasped its last and died under the onslaught of the radiant sun! The richly verdant fields sway long in the wind, and the water sparkles with that luxuriant diamond chill! Such a season of delights is perfect for Magpie Avyan’s grand reveal, is it not?

We set our scene by Windenburg’s public pool -- an unusual outing for a family already in possession of a swimming pool, but a charming venue for a birthday party indeed!

Of course, it was my request.We had to move in a few tables for the purposes of cake -- surprisingly, that someone might intend to have a snack by the waters never occured to the venue’s illustrious-but-absentee owners. In these situations, it pays to be adaptable.

“Alright, birthday boy!” My okasan called out over the clarion call of the vuvuzula. … Is clarion the right word? It sounds kind of like clear, but… Oh, no matter! “We’ve got everything set up. Including the song!”

Oh, no. Not the song. Okasan is, of course, a divine singer. Mom… Not so much.She only sings when they might sing together. And then the crowd.

““For he’s a jolly good fellow, for he’s a jolly good fellow, for he’s a jolly good feee-lllow, which nobody can deny!”””

And then this photo they took at the key moment! That face! I must not allow this to be seen by anyone but you and I, you understand? Otherwise, I would have no choice; I could not live among men any longer. I would have to… Perhaps die. Hemlock, maybe? Or! I could away to an opera house and hide forever more!

I think that favors more my dramatic soul. And I could get the most exquisite seats! ...Of course, I could do that without the humiliation, but then it would just be bizarre.

Of course, that sad, but ultimately fond farewell to the idylls of childhood aside...

It was time for everyone to feast their eyes on the premiere this dazzling beauty now before you!  It is with utter sincerity I pray for my Creative spirit can now be laid bare! For how could my adoring public expect anything less?

Of course, in fashion, I must flash a certain individual style, colorful but also elegant, as I am! As much as can be mastered; the mundane tailors of our unfortunate locale stand against silk in exercise wear, as if luxury ought be contained only to the clean and tidy realms of life! Upon reflection, mayhaps I could have taken to transcend mere categories in the name of splendor, but I fear the moment has passed. I will hope to recall this another time.

As for aspirations, I must admit, I find myself turning to love most of all. Who doesn’t desire a flight of passion, the heartfelt embrace of a lover? What sort of artiste can live without the truest devotion of his public? -- And who cannot weep at the thought of a lover such as I, a jewel among men who recognizes the inherent beauty of all, containing his ardor for only one person? Well, weep no more, for a serial romantic I shall be!

It’s not, however, as if I wish to be indiscriminate. I am, after all, aiming to be a serial romantic, and not merely a serial philanderer. I’m not entirely sure how to distinguish the two, but in this, experience will show the way as I acquire it!

“I like your suit, though,” says my fellow artiste, Fiona Rosa. I am witholding a shudder at her hat with that dress. However, I will respect she has her own vision and perhaps eventually, I will have my makeovers.  “It’s bright around all the black! And the hair’s cute.”
“Of course it is! Stylists speak of a splash of color, but one must be daring to offer up a garment to the random fortunes of a splash of color.”

My darling elder brother and our somewhat, but I think ultimately innocently, devilish neighbor Carla come to praise me!

“Trip, them glad rags are the bee’s knees.” Since my brother’s spoken to you before, I doubt I need to translate. “Anyhoodle, happy b-day, bro. Got a candle-blower I can spot a hand with?”

“Hmmm… I think it is the duty of  man to endeavor to satisfy his own wishes, even if it means he struggles against the world!” I declared, with proper fervor.

“Nah, I wouldn’t letcha kick up a fight on the world by yerself,” he said with a lazy smile. “‘M on your side all th’ way.”

“Oh! How touching!” He’ll bring me to tears one of these days -- I know it with certainty. I’m just too sensitive~

“A family’s got to stick together,” Carla agreed. “I’m not the most tender-hearted girl, but I’m really glad my siblings and I have all stuck together.”

“It’s a moving family story, is it not?”

Our little chit-chat is cruelly interrupted by the sound of a brutally loud splash, the noise best described of a body hitting water as though it were concrete.

“Ow,” winced Salim, fresh from a dreadful attempt at a bellyflop.

“Well, that certainly was a flop alright!” Uncle Johnny laughed the vain effort off, while the woman on the other corner grumbled over the tragedy of her drenched hair.

“Ugh… I think that’s done a number on my back. I should have just paddled.”

“There’s your problem; you’re supposed to put your belly into it, not your back!”

While the invitations amid my party skewed my own age or young adult, I couldn’t help but notice an older crowd was in attendance as well. Wonder you the cause of this? Well, wonder no more! Besides my own household...

It appears Akira’s long-dormant society, The Renegades, had collected to hold a meeting! For Prank Day, what else would suffice? Besides, at this rate, I doubt the original membership shall be together on this side of the veil of tears much longer -- all things are fleeting, so break your coffee machines and gather your rosebuds while ye may, renegades!

The rest of us enjoyed the splendors of the pool and of the first day of summer.

I could hear the peels of ringing laughter from my brother and his dear Kacie. She’d jumped in, party dress and all, to splash him.

“Sometimes, you’ve just got to live a little! Woo-hoo!” She shouted.

“Hahaha, y’sure?” He barely tried to dodge out, just ducking under the spray for a moment.

“...I was before I had to swim in a pencil skirt,” she admitted. I, for one, approve. Was I not just expressing a similar sentiment?

“‘Scute, though.”

Speaking of cute…

“Oh, my. Matching swimsuits -- that’s quite the fashionable look these days!” While hardly twins, I don’t think it’s such a thing as one needs to go change… Well, saying that, I believe were I matched without being imitated, I would, in fact, change immediately!

“You can’t go wrong with black, right?” she shrugged. I rather wish I’d gotten more of her name, but this carefully coiffed redhead seems to have avoided an acquaintance.

“Absolutely not!” I agreed.

“Maybe we could try and brainstorm something a little more fun sometime, huh, Magpie?” Alyson Caliente, however, I already knew somewhat, as a friend of the family -- or, perhaps, the family of a friend.

“I wouldn’t refuse an opportunity, should one arise. Whoever clamors for my forethought, I shall endeavor my utmost to oblige!”

“That’s a great way to put it.” She followed her answer with a chuckle. “You’re going to take up an art, right. You do drama, but are you going to paint, like your brother?”

“I think it’s likely, but I don’t intend to be bound by a career plan so simply! I must consider which field would best allow my artistry to soar.”

“Oh, yeah, totally. I just meant as a hobby.”


It was, dear friend, a most splendid party that only the Avyan family could have thrown with such ferocity! Dusk fell, whisking the summer sun from us, encaging it once more until tomorrow.

We did, however, have an appointment to keep -- while a man must endeavor to fulfill his own wishes, true, an agreement with one’s older sibling and his friends is not quite the same! It demands their participation, either.

And so we all ended up spending some time in the city that evening.

“Alright, then! Who’s got the ball?” Gulliver asked, awaiting the start of our little game.

“I thought you had it.”

“Trip, we don’t even got a court.” It seemed for a brief moment like all might be lost…

“I’ve recovered it! Now, ready yourself for a splendid display!”

...You want to know how the game went? Well, ahahaha, some things are better left secret. Consider it a mystery designed to confound, a catbox in which a million futures may flurry!

Our compact of the night before kept, we returned to the second most important matter of my birthday: a remodel! While I kept a certain childish whimsy -- how could I part with the gnome flamingo so soon, I ask you? What heartless monster would dare! -- I also sought to upscale certain elements of my quarters.

If I could ply your ears an hour longer, I’d spin whatever tales I must, but you simply must still your demands for today. Do not weep that we now part, and all so soon -- celebrate, instead, this tale we’ve shared. Adieu, my dear friend, Adieu!
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline Joria

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"Not Merely a Serial Philanderer" (6/6/19)
« Reply #148 on: June 07, 2019, 06:28:21 PM »
Well done!  Took awhile to catch up but worth it.  You really write very well.  Do you nanowrimo?
What?  Grannies can't play games?
I speak perfect Nooblik, (and some Simlish)!

With A Twist, an Immortal Dynasty
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Offline Deme

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Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"Not Merely a Serial Philanderer" (6/6/19)
« Reply #149 on: June 09, 2019, 10:58:57 AM »
Well done!  Took awhile to catch up but worth it.  You really write very well.  Do you nanowrimo?

Thank you very much!

While I am working on a novel, I don't do nanowrimo, for a few reasons. #1, I have Seasonal Affective Disorder, and that really starts to rear its head in November, and taking care of myself has to come first. #2, I'm stressed enough about my writing pace already, #3, I can't keep track of time well enough to actually remember around the start of the month oops.
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty