Author Topic: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty - We're Back and Away (7/27/20)  (Read 16872 times)

Offline Deme

  • Immortal
  • *****
  • Posts: 745
Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"A Joke Without a Punchline" (6/9/19)
« Reply #150 on: June 09, 2019, 06:05:14 PM »
Chapter 47: A Joke Without a Punchline

Clock’s ticking, huh? For everyone but me, of course. And the vampires, but remember: fool’s game. Zest’s feeling that tick especially fast, I think. Which isn’t surprising, really. So, what’s a guy like that to do? Well, funny story. Sometimes, he starts parenting other people’s kids. One of Akira’s, Poppy, was hanging around the house, and he comes up to her and asks,

“Do you need something?”

“I wanted to play with my dad, but he’s not here. I’ve never met him,” she tells him. Awkwaaaard.

“Well, why don’t you play with me for a while? I’ve got some kids, so I’m someone’s dad, anyway.”

Kids, don’t go with a guy who says stuff like that. Just don’t do this at home. But he actually did mean the right stuff, and she did smile and say,

“Okay! I’m a princess today.”

“Hi, A Princess Today. I’m Johnny.” Ugghhhh.

“Ready to go, princess? This is gonna be a big one,” I catch Zest saying. I was doing a little surveying of the yard, personally; I wanted to make a few expansions.

“Mr. Johnny, you shall address me as ‘your highness’!” She answers -- but, like, in a cute way. Smiley.

You wouldn’t guess what he said. I mean, you would. You’ve heard him. You wouldn’t guess what he said if you were pretending we lived in a good and just universe.

“Jee, and I thought I’d A-dress-you in fabrics!”

I try and be nice about a guy being good to kids and not a creeper and this is how he repaid me!

He has a bunch over for game night, too; the younger kid’s club, actually.It’s a good strategy, really. But it does mean there’s a lot of shouting around the consoles. Man, the look on Annabell’s face when she realized she was getting whupped.

“Please no, please no, I just got unlucky, that’s all…”

“Luck comes to those who seize it,” declares an accurate and confident Fiona Rosa. The girl speaks the truth, remember that.

While everyone else was doing their get-togethers, Salim and Justine had themselves a little date. And some big news:

“Salim, I’m pregnant!”

Which, like. No duh. He’s older than you, but he’s not blind. He can definitely see that… But he’s still over the moon.

“How wonderful! Oh, they’re going to be so precious!” It’s one of those face-meltingly goopy smiles, all giddy with excitement. It’s how I know I picked good people. Not that I’m still not going to be on his case about the next folks I have lined up, but you know. Let a man have this.

“Do you want a boy or a girl?”

“It really hardly matters, right?” He grins. “Oh, I wrote a little something. It seems even more fitting now.”

“It seems a late and so strange start
To find forever in your heart.”

“OOh, very nice! Is that going in a sonnet?” She really does love stuff like that, with her eyes sparkling, and just a little swoon.

“It’s in my spirit, every time I think of you… The two of you,” he adds, very softly. It’s pretty different than the way he thinks about, well, the kids of other women. I’m not sure it’d make a difference to me, but they want it seperate, so OK. “...We are, really, together, right?”

“Yeah. You and me and the baby.”

That’s some sappy business. But, you know? Sometimes you need that. I don’t, I mean. I’m fine, but you know.

The next day, Zest had his older kids over for the afternoon. 

“Oh, I’m going to get a full-on water fight, bro!” you could hear Ulysses from the kitchen, even. 

“Yuh-huh. That’s my cue to get away from you guys for a bit,” Bonnie replies, as she starts heading to a different part of the pool. C’mon, Bonnie. Live a little!

Even Zest’s in on the games, after all. And those spring chickens should know that you’re not out ‘til you’re out… And, really. You’re never too old for a spread-fingered splash.

“C’mon! Aiming for the mouth’s -- cough -- a low blow, Dad!” Hob sputters in the middle of an especially mischevious round of splashing about.

“You shouldn’t be swimming with it open! A fly’ll fly in!” Still, Zest gives him a little pat on the back, everything slowing down to make sure the kid’s still got his lungs in him.

“Why would a fly be by the pool?” Ulysses butts in where wiser sims feared to tread.

““Maybe they’re going fly-fishing,”” Zest saying that -- not a shock. Hob saying that? Kind of surprising, really. Everyone turns. Zest goes really quiet for a minute instead of looking super proud of his terrible sense of humor.

And then he says:
“...I’m proud of you, son,” in a voice as if it were the other way around -- as if Zest had been the one with water in his throat.

“I learned from the best,” Hob answers. And that might be affairs in order, right there. Who knows?

They adjourn from the pool as evening falls. And as evening falls,

Akira comes back with his final promotion -- and his first notice, so that’s pretty much just in time. Kite’s about halfway through his own career, so good going, kiddo!

And Zest and the kids start up a friendly game of darts. The bar’s quiet. I’m not working there. Miko’s working on song lyrics, which -- get this! Doesn’t count when you submit them to the record label! That’s some cheap stuff, let me tell you. I’ll have to make sure any kid down the line knows. The evening light’s drifting down to the basement level.

Far as I know, there’s nothing unusual about it… Until there’s one sound that’s a little different.

It’s a thud, abrupt as dusk creeping in. Somehow, we all heard it. Zest blinks, woozily, as shouts of “Dad” hit his ears.

“Ahh...That’s kind of...Dizzy...Ah,” he mumbles, tuning out gradually, like a clock losing time.

The kids are right there. Of course they are.

Ulises is already choking back tears when I get down there. It’s not like they didn’t know, but I guess it doesn’t matter.

“Dad! You’ve gotta get up! Dad, tell me you’re gonna be OK!”

And Zest, Johnny Zest, the guy who lived his life like it was a stage -- even when he wasn’t a good performer -- smiles. And he looks up, and he says:

“You’re gonna be…”

And his eyes shut, mid-sentence.

Finish it, I think. Smile like it was something to be proud of. Finish the joke. You can’t just leave it there.

But this is why I hate dying. Because he does. He has a last joke -- and that last joke doesn’t have a punchline.

The Reaper nods as he enters the room, bringing with him a winter chill I thought we were over already. I want to be over this creep already.

“Jonathan ‘Johnny’ Zest, except when he wasn’t. A rather quick death, all things considered… But it might have been better to go easily, hm?” He says it just, just shy of casually. Like he’s thinking about an old friend. “Well, time for the final assessment.”

“Quite the fellow. A star comedian, a lover of many… There are parts of your story only you and I know. Father of, in no particular order, Ashley Lynx, Sherry Bjergsen, Ulises and Yaritza Behr, Fiona and Colleen Rosa, Bonnie, Brianna, and Hobart Haas, Kaden, Brandon, and Haande Holiday, Alyson Caliente, Anabelle Proctor, Leanne and Nicholas Walsh, Beatriz Kim-Lewis, Dario Delgato, and Courtney Wheatley…” He whistles. “You were 92 days old.. You certainly seemed to have had fun… Well. Goodnight.”

Like you can boil down a life like that. But there he goes, just like that.

Hob can’t even talk for crying. And for a while, we just let them. Until they all have to go to their own homes. Until things have to lurch forward.

He was my first friend in a long time. And my first helper in all this. His money built me the first rooms in this house. And it was time to say “Goodbye, Zest.”

He filled the house with the worst, I mean the most terrible, jokes…But I had a lot of fun hating on them, if you really want to know. But really, what sort of last words were those? A last joke he couldn’t finish.

...Maybe it wasn’t a joke. I mean… Well, we saved the pictures, right?

There’s his family. Look how many he’s grinning in. Maybe those words really were a message for them -- for the people he love, something to leave them with.

‘You’re going to be OK.”

...Maybe. It’s a nice thought. 
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline Joria

  • Top Secret
  • Watcher
  • ******
  • Posts: 5741
Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"A Joke Without a Punchline" (6/9/19)
« Reply #151 on: June 09, 2019, 08:43:54 PM »
No fair.  My nose was already all stuffed up and these bloody tears don't help.  I always hate it when he loses his Zest for life.  (groan, couldn't help it.)  Beautifully done.
What?  Grannies can't play games?
I speak perfect Nooblik, (and some Simlish)!

With A Twist, an Immortal Dynasty
My No Buy Story
Joria's Creations on the Gallery

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

Offline Deme

  • Immortal
  • *****
  • Posts: 745
Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -"A Joke Without a Punchline" (6/9/19)
« Reply #152 on: June 11, 2019, 02:41:16 PM »
No fair.  My nose was already all stuffed up and these bloody tears don't help.  I always hate it when he loses his Zest for life.  (groan, couldn't help it.)  Beautifully done.

He would be so proud of that joke. I'm glad you appreciated the chapter.
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline Deme

  • Immortal
  • *****
  • Posts: 745
Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty -House Update (6/11/19)
« Reply #153 on: June 11, 2019, 03:01:59 PM »
House Update!

Around these updates and the last, I did some house remodels big and small to the house!

First, the big expansion! Most of this is a shell at the moment, but I felt like I'd run out of bedroom space with the house as it is.

And around the back! You can see we moved Kestral's starting bar, for reasons that surely are not sentimental if you ask Kestral, to the back porch.

From our front remodel, as you can see, we've done some work on the children's play garden! Cute, huh?

So, when Johnny died, we didn't need his old bedroom anymore, and so I got done something I'd always intended to do:

Turn that space into a more expansive dining room area. It's nice, and believe it or not, actually does see some use from time to time!

And finally, we have our basement expansion! The ambrosia dining room's a bit bigger, to better display things -- like Johnny's wall of pictures. We also have the museum rooms for future generations, as well. It all takes up a lot of basement space, so I'm still kind of puzzling over how to do some things, build-wise, that I'd like to do. More on that... Maybe sometime during Gen 3 a bit, but mostly later than that.

I need to find time for a house tour on the whole, but with chronological drift and all, it's something I'd have to schedule for a distant enough point that there aren't a lot of spoilers. Maybe when I upgrade the study... Unless that's not a concern to folks.
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline Joria

  • Top Secret
  • Watcher
  • ******
  • Posts: 5741
Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty - A House Update (6/11/19)
« Reply #154 on: June 11, 2019, 03:39:31 PM »
Lovely upgrade!!!  I like the idea of separate rooms in the basement for the museum.  I may just steal that idea.  I have a tendency to go down as far as I can go so I have basement,1, 2, and three to accommodate the things I like to do, for instance one might be my indoor/outdoor garden for veggies etc., one level with pool, gym and sauna/massage areas or basketball court or bowling, (or both!), and one massive space for museum items.  Definitely think having separate rooms for heirs museum stuff is wonderful.
   I absolutely adore the "kindergarden".  Your children from nooboos on up must love it and it makes it so much easier to contain them.  Very, very cute.
   I also love the wrap around, roofed over porch.  I have trouble with roofs so mine tend to be pretty crappy and not much on the porches.  Loved moving the bar.  Kessie must be happy with it.

 OOOh, I would so love to decorate this shell!  Actually, my great-grandaughter is better at it then I am pulling in some very interesting colors and patterns I would never think of use.  Tend to be monochromatic/modern, or granny/country or brighter Victorian or medieval.  I'm also not real good at the actual building design.  Mine look boxy or weird.  I am, however, pretty good at landscaping.  Tend to go overboard though.  I want it all.  lol

Just perfect.  Oh, I love the enlarged dining room.  Makes for big family dinners and parties!
What?  Grannies can't play games?
I speak perfect Nooblik, (and some Simlish)!

With A Twist, an Immortal Dynasty
My No Buy Story
Joria's Creations on the Gallery

Offline Deme

  • Immortal
  • *****
  • Posts: 745
Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty - That Noise's Not Gonna Be Here (6/18/19)
« Reply #155 on: June 18, 2019, 05:43:10 PM »
Chapter 48: That Noise's Not Gonna Be Here

Trip, but if that didn’t hit us all rough, you dig? Sure, on the outer edges a’ thing, it weren’t so bad. An it aint like I had a -- well, kay, that’s, like, a lie, dig? Was gonna spin ya’ one, but then stuff wouldn’t make sense.But I don’t think it real dug Kacie deep, an’ I’m glada that. Like, when someone’s gone, everyone loses out, dig? As if a prom’natory an’ all, one cool cat said that. One cool medieval cat. But at the end a’ the day, that continent’s all built up an’ wiped away, ev’ry second an’ ev’ry day; ‘s no crime t’ move along… An if it makes somethin’ a little easier f’r someone, trip, aint that a little cool? Even if, like, it aint my style, I guess.

What I’m drivin at’s, like, the moms an’ the kids-type-family, we kinda reeled. It hurt. It sounds like you mighta got a bit misty, too. You OK, bud?

… Cool, cool. Well, I know how I felt -- trip, man, like someone took, like, a melonballer up through my chest, you dig? One a’ those deep hollowins’, like somethin’ gotta cave. But that’s why I kinda figgered -- keep yer wig screwed on, dig? I gotta keep cool when things are happenin’. Stomach bug, like, aside, man.

‘Cause it aint like Magpie didn’t need someone.I heard him tryin’ t’ talk his way through it through the bathroom wall, an’ that’s just so much, man. So much. So I thought I’d jam it out w’ him.

“How you takin’ it, dude? You look pretty down.”

“And why should I not be? The reminder that all things must come to an end… The loss of a laughter…” He shook his head, an, man. I felt, like, the biggest stab a’ guilt. Cause the setup here aint cool f’r him, man. Like, it aint real cool f’r me, but trip... An he doesn’t know yet, you dig? But ‘fore I get too lost in my own head, he turns away, his eyes filled with tears. Even without all that noise, like, that’s a rough thing, dig? “...I put it like that, but… I just… I keep expecting him to be there. He’s always been there. And I turn my head and I think ‘oh, Uncle Johnny’s gone forever.’ Not to discount ghosts, but…”

“‘S not the same,” I fill in f’r him. An’ he nods. “But, y’know… There’s ways where things don’t, like, vanish, dig? Thing’s’re fleetin, this too shall pass an’ all, but… The world don’t just take. Things’re transformed, fluid-like, an’ move aroun’ the air an sky. Everythin’s a part of that big groovy cosmos, dig?”

“Haaa… Yes, yes… Yeah… I just... miss the way things have been. I look into that uncertain future, and…” He shakes his head, before it ends up on my shoulder.

‘Cuz, like, ‘cours I hug him.

“That’s cool. You let it out. But think, man: you got so much happenin’, we’re gonna haveta wear shades, dig?”

He doesn’t answer f’r a long time. I just hug ‘im, an’ he just cries. An I hold somethin’ back as best I can; I tamp down that feelin’ like somethin’s gonna collapse in my chest, gettin’ stirred up ‘cause I feel that, man.

Like, back in winter, there was a whole squad a’ snowpals. Just a squad, all done by Johnny an’ them. An’ they’re melted, an’ the winter won’t let ‘em get rebuilt by the same folks. ‘S like that. An all that noise’s not gonna be there. An none a’ that’s really at the heart a’ all this, not in, like, a deep soul way, you dig -- those’re just the things that remind you, the things you got to try an’ put together why somethin’s been chunked outta the world an’ the hole it left behind’s screamin.

Now, ‘ventually, I aint gonna be able t’ take it anymore, but not yet, dig? F’r the not yet, I’m still hangin’ on.

An’ Ka-san’s taking her moment. After folks cleared out, I think she was the only one down there; it aint like we’re not gonna put the grave up with the rest, just… Not yet, too, I guess. We’ll put it up, an’ we’ll find time to head over, too.

Now, one thing ‘m glad f’r was Mom came back down.
“What’s wrong, Miko?”

“It’s just so sad!” She cries, her voice dippin’ into a sob. “He barely got to enjoy his last promotion, and I know how much he wanted that, and the little ones won’t even remember!” She shakes her head. “And they’re so important to him, but… They won’t know.”

“There, there. It’ll be OK,” Mom says inta her shoulders.”Their moms will know, and tell them, and look: who’s going to blame a guy for dying?”

“You will,” Ka-san says, lettin’ go of a shaky breath. One a them where you’re not sure how it’s comin, so you take it slow, an delicate so it couldn’t move a feather.

“I won’t. I won’t say there was nothing he could have done, but… Well. Look, babe, why don’t I pour you something?”

I think that’s how Mom’s most comfy, really.

“Raise a glass… Funny guy, Zest.”

“Ha. You did like his jokes. Kneeew it! We… We had a bet.” The realization creeps back in, hangin’ there. Mom freezes f’r a sec, before she keeps movin.

“I did not, so sorry. You lose… I just very much enjoyed hating them.” She pauses. “He needed me to do that, really.”

“Suuuure.” They reminisce, quiet-like, while Ka-san nurses her drink.

‘Ventually, they both head on up. An’ I see Mom out on the back porch...

Just lookin’ up at it, dig? Not at the stars, y’see. But at the house. I think that mighta been how she does this, y’know? How she holds what’s happenin. Maybe she’s thinkin’ how much he had on this, too; how he built up our place. T’me, the house was the house, dig? An’ the money trees had, like, a lot to do with the expansions we did. But t’ Mom, an’ Uncle Akira, an’ Uncle Johnny, an’ Ka-san, this was somethin’ they all built together, dig?

Hard t’ say. All she put into the night was, “You weren’t just some chucklehead, you know?”

An that’s about where I couldn’t. I cracked. I flipped. Naah, naah, that aint it, man. Not that they wouldn’t be, like, real words, just… Not the right ones, dig? I aint real sure if there’s just, like, a word f’r it.Not one folks’ll really dig; course, that’s always, like, a thing with me.

  F’r when all y’r holdin’ it together burns out, an’ everythin’ you were sayin’ to someone else becomes, like, a lie, you dig? ‘R you face you were lyin’ the whole time, ‘r… Like something punches you, right in the middle. Like you can’t hold onto that breath.

An I thought I did a pretty good job checkin’ the room was cleared.

But that wasn’t happening, man. I try an’ hurry to wipe my eye ‘fore Ka-san sees, but she’s got sharper eyes than that.

“Uh, ‘sup, Ka-san! I was just, like, feelin’ the groove cosmic, ya dig?” ...I aint very good at that sorta usin’ dialect f’r coverin’ things up. I got a truth, an’ all. But she just sorta sighs.


“It’s okay to feel sad at a time like this.” She leans forward just a little, tryin’ to catch my eyes. When she does, it aint like I can look away.

“I dig, I dig. Don’t worry…I aint down on that cuz’a…” It really isn’t that, not ‘xactly, dig? ‘S complicated, dude. Like, what’s in my own head… Sometimes it’s fine, sometimes it aint, but it’s diff’rent when it aint just caught with someone else. It’s diff’rent when someone’s got me, dig?

An then Ka-san catches a wave and knocks it all away.

“It’s not a burden to anyone, honey.” When she says that, my breath stops dead cold. I can’t put a thought in my head; everythin’ goes real still, ‘til all I got’s the soft sound of my mom’s voice. “You’re my baby, and you’ll never be a burden to me.”

An’ I cry.
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline Joria

  • Top Secret
  • Watcher
  • ******
  • Posts: 5741
Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty - That Noise's Not Gonna Be Here (6/18/19)
« Reply #156 on: June 18, 2019, 07:56:11 PM »
Beautifully done.  Now pass me the tissues, darn it.
What?  Grannies can't play games?
I speak perfect Nooblik, (and some Simlish)!

With A Twist, an Immortal Dynasty
My No Buy Story
Joria's Creations on the Gallery

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

Offline Deme

  • Immortal
  • *****
  • Posts: 745
Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty - That Noise's Not Gonna Be Here (6/18/19)
« Reply #157 on: July 07, 2019, 04:18:40 PM »
Beautifully done.  Now pass me the tissues, darn it.

A little late (I've been swamped), but here's some tissues, and my gratitude.
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline Deme

  • Immortal
  • *****
  • Posts: 745
Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty - I have ardor! (7/7/19)
« Reply #158 on: July 07, 2019, 04:19:31 PM »
Chapter 49: I have Ardor!

Sos, Mom’s got sorta the next ‘round’ a’ women hopin’ to get some kids. Kinda a weird side thing, but no one’s gettin’ hurt here.

“Well, hi. Nice to meet…” Salim was gettin’ started when Cassie Goth goes runnin’ off inside.

“Let’s not waste time! The goth family won’t extend itself!”

“...Well, OK…” He sighs a little, an’ I figger he was, like, hopin’ for somethin’ civil, with a professional politeness. But I guess when y’ take too much personal outta somethin, you really go seriously impersonal-like. But this mostly aint an impersonal story, what I got f’r you today; ‘s kinda a story a’ three diff’rent dates, a bit.

...But ‘fore that, gotta add one other little bummer.

“What is it, Ulrike?” Akira’d gotten a phone call. An’ I guessed from his tone, kinda low an’ worried, it weren’t good.There was a bit of a pause. “Oh, so that’s all starting to get around, huh? Well, it’s not like I didn’t eventually realize my reputation would suffer. Don’t worry.”

But yeah, that marks somethin’ kinda different: Most of us got pretty solid reps. ‘S just Akira who’s got a rep that’ll suffer here. I feel bad, even if, like, he thinks it aint wrong on him.

As f’r your buddy Kite here...

“Hey, you OK?” Kace asks while we’re workin’ in the garden. It’s somethin’ we do without really talkin’ on it, or decidin’ it, these days. But here, guess she figgered I’m the type t’ get down an’ not say. Trip, man, guilty as charged on that…

“I aint cool, but I’ll be cool, dig?” ‘S what I settle on.

“Alright,” she says, not b’fore givin’ me a little worried look. “But, hey, I’ve been thinking! We’ve got Wolfsbane and Sage, which are always in season; why don’t we do some grafting onto those, so the garden’ll be growing year-round?”

“Groovy; let’s. We got the clock for it.” It’ll prob’bly be a long kinda deal, but it’d be nice t’see one day. You look back over it an’ there’ll be rows an’ rows we planted t’gether.
When thing’s slip out to evenin’, we head out. It’s deffo a date, dig? Just, kinda, like, low-key… Kinda more a trip out t’ the cliffs overlookin’ the lake. Kace wanted t’see if they actually got waterballoons there.

They do.

Trip, man, but they do. You good pal’s kinda a soggy pal once waterballoons get happenin’. That girl’s a crack shot -- but aint it worth it? You look up from behind drippin’ hair an you see her laughin, the sunset goin’ down around her an’ boundin’ off her skin.

“Oooh, look at me, I’m too busy thinking about the inherent oneness of all life to dodge a balloon!” She pulls a face, an I can’t stand back up straight f’r laughin.

“What kinda rag’s that, pook?” Now, see, oneness a’ lifes a garden thought, dig? ‘R those wildflowers way out back. Those moments when y’re right with everythin’, an y’love the sun the same kinda way. That kinda thing.

“I had to think about it!” She laughs anyway. “And I had to do it while throwing!”

Trip, I love’r. An’ that somethin’ I wanna look back over everythin’ I did an’ see.

“...I dig the oneness thing.”  Now, this could be one’a them moments, too, dig? There’s somethin’ really happenin here, when you got the view of a’ mouse, an you feel the heat a’ her like you’re seein’ like a boa. An all of it, the heat an’ the grass an’ you an her, just dwarfed under the faint stars, pokin’ their way out. An the stars get dwarfed by, like, the ineffable infinite a’ space. An’ that’s everythin, swimmin’ there.

“Yeah? I was mostly teasing, you know,” She says, snugglin’ into grass.

“Yeah, nah, that didn’t miss ‘r nothin. Just… Trip,” I didn’t know what I could say t’ tell her alla that, dig? But I wanted t’ try. “Everythin’s here under that sky -- well, ‘cept the aliens, but they’re just dippin’ it, ‘r caught with the stars ‘tween us an’ them like beads on a thread, dig? Ah! You heard that story a’ those physics cats?”

“Actual cats, cats in thought experiments, or physicists?”

“Third one. See, they’ve got this real far-out idea happenin’. The world’s, like, just all strings, vibratin’ at once. An’ it’s sorta like that. We’re all movin’ at our own pace, but it’s all the same stuff, an what looks like solid stuff an’ distance’s all just points in a line. That’s only, like, half string theory, an’ half junk I dig, dig? An’ a moment like this, like… I feel where I’m just a point on the line, but the line’s f’rever. An there aint a gap ‘tween me an the grass… Or me an’ you. We’re connected, not startin’, not stoppin’.” It aint totes what I mean, like, in the whole, but sometimes you gotta say what you can, dig?

“...I like that. Kinda took a ways to get there, but I do like it. So, if I were to move my hand just a little like this… It’d just be moving down that thread, huh?” She says, reachin out in the grass between us.

“Yeah, ‘r somethin. An if I move like this…” I grab that hand, catchin a bit a grass in there, an holdin’ my girl an’ the world.

Our fingers twine an’ weave over each other, an’ she says,

“And this is just the reflection of reality.”

“Yeah, you dig it.”

An’ elsewhere on that line, there’s some other lovebirds out in’ the night. F’r example…

The rents. There’s dates t’ do, an’ you know how much Mom loves chasin’ a goal. Pff. It aint like she needs the excuse, dig?

“Wooh! Still takes my breath away!” Ka-san tells her. “It’d be very handy if I ever needed my lungs pumped.”

“What is that even supposed to mean, you?” Mom asks, not meanly. “I’d much rather be called a succubus.”

“A nice one, then,” Ka-san offers. “One turned to the light by my radiant energy!”

“Well, the radiance is hard to deny. But I don’t know if you’ve tamed the evil out of me yet -- I’ll need another few rounds of breath for that.”

They laugh for a while, an’ fall in’ banterin’ on old jokes, here an’ there.

An they get t’ spend a not-so quiet evenin, listenin’ to Ka-san jam out tune after groovy tune.

And then there’s Magpie. Got himself a trophy; aint that just the bees’ knees? But he met someone on his way back -- well, like, not met, you dig? She’s been around an’ all.

Alyson Caliente, one’a Johnny’s kids. Magpie saw she was still feelin’ kinda bummed, an’ right on it. So they get out back an’ get talkin.

“I’ve considered acting myself! How is drama club?” She asks him, an he tells ‘er,

“The director doesn’t have a creative soul in his body. Stock! Staid! You recommend one production where everyone’s on roller skates, and suddenly, every look is a glower!”

“That sounds awful. I’d hate for someone to not listen to my ideas…” She sighs. “But I would like to try acting sometime.”

“Well, what time is superior to the present, dear lady?” He grins an’ takes her up by the hand. “The world’s a stage to begin with -- what fault is there, of playing to an audience of cicada, and hear in their chorus applause. Romeo and Juliet; Act 1, Scene 5.”

“If I profane with my unworthiest hand
This holy shrine, the gentle fine is this:
My lips, two blushing pilgrims, ready stand
To smooth that rough touch with a tender kiss.”

He’s got, like, a way of it, man, hard to say what, dig? A tone that takes happenin’ from unhappenin’. Well, Magpie’s pretty cool, but ‘m little gobblesmacked seein’ her gooify. Takes her a second f’r the line.

“Good pilgrim, you do wrong your hand too much,
Which mannerly devotion shows in this;
For saints have hands that pilgrims' hands do touch,
And palm to palm is holy palmers' kiss.” Kinda hammy, but ‘s cool, man, ‘scool.

“Have not saints lips, and holy palmers too?” He asks wearin’ Romeo like a hat, leanin’ in.

“Ay -- ay,  pilgrim, lips that they must use in prayer.”

“O, then, dear saint, let lips do what hands do;
They pray, grant thou, lest faith turn to despair.” He comes mighty close then, ‘till his own face goes flush, an he skeedaddles back t’ real range. “It’d be something like that, I suppose! You did quite well!”

They spend a little more time, catchin’ flicks, playin’ a game, when somewhere to get munches, she pokes him with:

“So, if that’s how it’d be for Romeo and Juliet to date… But if it were you and me, then…”

An’ Maggie freezes a sec; he don’t do it by halves, neither, but stiff as a board ‘til he’s got words trippin’, ready t’ go.

“If I loved you -- Aaah, but that’s just more theatre, is it not? I considered that one… However… If you and I were romantically involved, then, my flower, I would use every word in my most exquisite vocabulary to shower you with praise! And when passionate speech might fail,”

“There’s always body language, its own sweet vocabulary, my dear!”

“Snrk.” She starts t’ giggle, an’ it aint like I’m puttin’ that down, dig? Trip, but them’s some goofy poses, bro!

“I’m being serious!” He blurts when he can’t think up a follow-through. “You’re a beautiful girl and I like you!”

“Why not just say that, then? But… I do like the sound of every word in your vocabulary. So… I might like that.”

“Then we are entangled, as sweethearts, perhaps?” He rushes on from put-down to giddy all in a blink.

“Yes! Let’s date!”

‘Course, everythin’ was still goin’ on, so this got met by a round of applause. An Alyson sorta flushes here, see, an whispers somethin….

But, like, one way or another, they end up retreatin’ to his pad. An’ what a coupla kids just datin’ gets up to’s ‘tween them an’ them, dig? But when he gets down t’ get some grub, Alyson’s headed out.

“Grats, Magpie. But...Hey… I always sorta got the vibe you and Reiko kinda, like, were inneres’ed in a thing, yeah?” I ask, givin’ him a cheery grin.

“Well… About that matter… I… I do love her. Reiko, I mean. And Alyson…” He sighs. “Does everything have to be so closed in this way? Love is a feeling, not a contract, not a bicycle built for two, is it not, dear brother?” He pulls himself up kinda proud then, like ‘hands up.’ But it aint like that.

“...Maaaan, I am not down on puttin’ love down, you know that.” He’s always been kinda on this, but I guess gettin’ a gal-pal really hits that up. “But you gotta be fair t’em, an’ not carry ‘round like a thief, dig? Love’s gotta own up to love.”

“I thank you for your sage advice. Very well! I shall phone Alyson about my intentions anon!”

“Luck, dude.”

“I have ardor! Luck is secondary!” Glad t’see him back in action. Trip, aint love just the thing?
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline MystiKitty

  • Llama Wrangler
  • **
  • Posts: 81
Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty - I have Ardor! (7/7/19)
« Reply #159 on: July 08, 2019, 04:33:36 PM »
But what sort of chump doesn’t want to brag? Bragging ‘rights’ are really ‘rewards,’ where you get to seize your aggrandizement.

If she were a real woman, Kestrel would be the perfect PSN trophy hunter, hounding the hardest platinum trophies like a rabid dog. My kind of woman. ;D

But great job with the story so far. I'd do a story myself but every time I boot up Sims 4 I end up using testingcheats and violating the rules. And since I have so many games to play, Sims 4 is sort of low priority.  :-\

Offline Deme

  • Immortal
  • *****
  • Posts: 745
Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty - I have Ardor! (7/7/19)
« Reply #160 on: July 09, 2019, 09:13:18 AM »
But what sort of chump doesn’t want to brag? Bragging ‘rights’ are really ‘rewards,’ where you get to seize your aggrandizement.

If she were a real woman, Kestrel would be the perfect PSN trophy hunter, hounding the hardest platinum trophies like a rabid dog. My kind of woman. ;D

But great job with the story so far. I'd do a story myself but every time I boot up Sims 4 I end up using testingcheats and violating the rules. And since I have so many games to play, Sims 4 is sort of low priority.  :-\

She probably would! I might pursue this concept for her later, we'll see, ha ha.

Rough. The priority issue can't be fixed, but you could always go for a non HoF version, just for fun. But I'm glad you're enjoying mine, anyway!
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline Deme

  • Immortal
  • *****
  • Posts: 745
Chapter 50: Like Some Sort of Numismatic Mermaid

So, here’s the status check. Someone has to do it. First, the good, because I like counting successes better.

Kite’s working on his yoga. Now, I am not a granola girl, so this is all Selvadoradian to me. So he says he’s really learning a lot from it, I’m just gonna say “OK, kiddo,” and assume he means maybe stretches or something? You probably don’t measure yoga value in flexibility and I do not care.

He’s also gotten very good at making a quick simolean from his garden. Gardening skill’s pretty handy; it’s really more a quick several thousand simoleans, usually. Honestly, we have more money than I could ever -- well, hold up there, me. Let’s not kid ourselves. I could completely imagine more than a paltry million or so. Like, a million’s the amount I dreamt of under-achieving. I want to make a series of wetsuits out of cash and then go swimming in the cash pile like some sort of numismatic mermaid. The money’s not actually all that important, but I like it as a measure of the effort the family’s put in. Also, lording it over people.

My vampire research is finally leading me down some cocktail rabbit-holes. Not useful ones, not the one I really care about, but I’m sure I’ll get to it if I keep following these leads.

And finally,  Salim’s got his writing skill mastered. He’s probably not gonna clock in that aspiration before he’s done… Because the bad news gets rolling: he got his first notice, and he’s just gonna shrug and go “uh-yuck, guess I’ll die”! Like the rest of my generation who didn’t have kids!


And our second big problem, little miss truant here. For the past few days, she’ll just decide to skip out on class after just an hour. I swear, where’s she going to end up without an education? Her mom, who all signs points to being an A+ Major Harpy, might just have stood for it, because she probably didn’t care. Well, I decided one day, welcome to caring.

“Kacie, sweetie, why aren’t you at school?” In the battlefield that is people caring about you, my wife and firstborn are shock and awe troopers. So Miko says that with a sweet little smile that stops her in her tracks. But she presses on, so sure of herself. Was I like that as a teenager? Well, no. I was a totally different version of a hot mess.

“Well, they weren’t saying anything interesting, so I wanted to leave, so I did. It’s okay; I’ll be fine. It’s not like I need any of that stuff.”

And Miko doesn’t know how to answer stuff like that, because she’s doing what seems right, and Miko usually tries to be gentle and fair and understanding. And that’s why she needs me, because I know how right we are.

“If you don’t know what they’re teaching, how do you know if it’s something you’ll need or not?” I asked, turning my head to get a good look at Kacie.

“Well…It seemed like a good idea at the time,” she says. “It’s not as if I’ve got a great reputation there, anyway. All the teachers give me these looks, and… It’s frustrating, you know?”

And now Miko can steer, depositing her between us with all the grace of a butterfly.

“Having to put up with teachers can be super frustrating! I remember always feeling like they were just putting me down!”

“Right! See?” And maybe she doesn’t catch that tone. Now, I figured there had to be a lever here somewhere, but I wasn’t sure how to get the answer I wanted: IE, a wife for my son who at least managed a high school B. I think an A’s already lost to the wind and that’s less than ideal. But feelings are messy stuff.

“Still, you have to stand tall! You have to do your best as you believe ‘best’ is, and learn what you can. Otherwise, I think people like that just win and kill the joy out of learning!” Maybe in another world, Miko would have ended up more teacher than political rabble-rouser. Wouldn’t that be cute?

“...What I think is best, huh…” She muttered.

“Look, just stick it out. Otherwise, Miko and I could get in trouble. And that’d end up with you getting kicked back to your mom.”

“OK understood!” Wow, that’s a lever.

“Well, that’s maybe putting it hard… But it’s not wrong. After all, your mom agreed to let you live here to help you out, right? Well, and the other stuff. But I! For one! Think  that’s something that I want to see through to the very end, when you’re a young lady with all sorts of doors and futures ahead. So ganbatte!” Miko smooths that over a bit. It’s not like I wanted the fear of child protective services in her; I hate those jerks. So I give her a thumbs-up. And she, with a sadly familiar air of ‘I’ll make it because making it separates me from the void’ gives me one back.

“Rootin’ for you, kid.”

I don’t get what in that inspired her to call up her sister; something did.

“And you’re doing OK?” I hear her asking through the conveniently placed bugs. I’ve been busy.

“Yes, Kacie.”

“You’re taking care of yourself, right? Taking care your hair? Eating foods, several a day? Not running into traffic?“ Honestly, Kacie might make a pretty good mom one day. I wonder if she’s noticed or not?

“I’m doing my best!”

“Hey, Lily… Are you still mad at me?” Maybe she feels she ran out on the girl. Could be.

“Hmmm… Noooo, except when I am, which is sometimes. I don’t really get to say when. But mostly, no,” Lily tells her brightly. “You’re my sister! I want you to be happy. I want you to get how great you are!”

“I do! I’m fine... even when I’m not,” Kacie answers, which just about sums up the whole paradox of her existence.

“Yeah, but I mean all the time, all the way, for real! Otherwise, the sneeple win,” she adds, her eyes narrow with a sinister air. Has she been talking to the desert conspiracy people?

“...Are those snake people?”

“No, no! Snake people are basically lizard people, and lizard people are a hateful dogwhistle! I think. Either way, they distract us from the real menace… snail people.

“Of course, snail people. Sneeple.”

“I’ve got a great sneeple joke!”

“The sneeple want the sheeple drinking snapple!”

“Is that a joke?” Kacie asks, laughing for reasons that I think are 100% non-alliterative semi-rhyme based. Because I’m with her. That’s not a joke so much as a string of kind of funny words.

“It made you laugh, didn’t it?”

The two sisters just talk for a while after that.

Anyway, so, get this. We get invited out by one of those friends I don’t really care about. She’s a vampire, so maybe we should be friends; she’s a patsy, but you know. Gonna be around a while. Anyway, so here’s the thing:

Why did we get seated outside in a thunderstorm by this total incompetent? Well, that’s kind of a self-completing question, isn’t it? But it means this trip out was a total waste.

When people run from your table in fear, the lunch is over. That’s the rules.

But I guess the trip itself wasn’t a total waste. While we were out…

I got the grave situated. Johnny’s, I mean.
And it’s OK. I think he’d like having that star there. It isn’t like he didn’t earn it, but it’s not like he can really take it with him.

So I guess we better keep rolling.
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline Deme

  • Immortal
  • *****
  • Posts: 745
Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty - A Hard-Won Happiness (7/18/19)
« Reply #162 on: July 18, 2019, 04:13:04 PM »
Chapter 51: A Hard-Won Happiness

We got rung up out to the bluffs, but trip, man, this weren’t no scene. Like, it was dead, man, total snoresville. See, they had, like, a DJ station an’ all, but the rains put the keebosh on that whole plan.

So really, kinda, it was just a buncha folks.

An’ Mom asks Uncle Akira, while we’re waitin an’ he’s sayin’ ‘sup to his old flames,

“Did I do right by you?” An’ she says it sorta casual an’ thoughtless, f’r a second, no one can think she said it. I mean, Mom self-doubtin’ aint her style, dig? At least, not where anyone c’n hear her. But it aint like she seems flinchy, or a-jitter, neither.

“What?” Akira asks.

“Well, it’s not like I ever paid all that much attention to you, personally. But we did drag you into this anyway.You probably could have gone down some other road, and taken other opportunities, if we hadn’t. Sorry not sorry and all that, so I was just wondering what you thought of it.” Mom explains. The rain takes a tick just drippin’ down as the sound a’ the moment.

“ I don’t know if you’ve done right by me… But it’s not like I’d have made great choices on my own back then, either. I think I got a lot out of living here, and out of knowing your family,” ‘s what he answers f’r. But I think I get what Mom’s askin. It aint long now. Guy like that’s spent so long wound up, like, just seethin’ under a mask, just ready to flip his wig an’ never really lettin’ him flip, dig? Just lettin’ things pile up ‘til it all broke.

He ‘ventually found, like, his own little slice’a chill, but trip: ‘s he happy? What’s he scopin’ back over the whole shebang?

But that’s f’r him, I figgered. It aint gotta be f’r me. Or Mom. But, like, kinda glad she thoughta it.

Anyhoodle, with the party a bust, we had t’ make our own! No extra fires’re started in the make a this, Kite swears it. I, like, kinda still remember the party, dig? But nah, we just had fun. An’ we got to dance some, jams ‘r no jams!

“What a party,” Ka-san mumbles, pullin’ close to Mom.

“It’s ridiculously stupid.”

“No, it’s fun! Music would have been good, but this is sweet, honey… It’s more romantic than a big dance rave, anyway.” She rests her head on Mom’s shoulders, an’ Mom don’t even try to hide the grin there.

“A fine point, my dear… The rain can fall where it may, if I’ve got you to keep me warm.” She pauses. “Still, kinda stupid to do this here and now. We could do this without the party.”

“Hee hee.”

It’s still early the next mornin, when Ulrike called Akira out t’see ‘er.

“It’s nice, isn’t it?” She asks. “The chateau’s always so quiet in the morning. It’s so peaceful… When I was a kid, I used to get so bored of things like that.”

“Same. I mean, a stuffy old building -- big whoop. But I guess it’s not about the building. Which is just --”

“Stuffy and old, yeah,” Says one ol’ rebel to the other, all fondy.

“...But I did used to want kind of a stuffy old romance. I mean, exciting, but… Old-fashioned. Romantic, like this. I probably wanted it too much.” Akira sighs reftectin’ on those ol’ days I just saw some trail enda as a kid. An’ I guess I’ll snap to that, dude; it really didn’t do him no good.

“I wouldn’t have given you that even if you weren’t a cheat! You needed to shape up,” she said, sure of it, buttin’ playfully inta’ his side.  “And I wouldn’t have wanted the whole big white dress thing. I mean, I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have been allowed to wear one; they’re for good girls.”

“Ha. Please don’t retroactively tell me that. It’d have driven my blood pressure through the roof.” He laughs it off now, though, an stops lookin’ off toward the house an’ back at her. “But you know? I can’t say I miss that fairytale romance. I think I’m happy.”

“Yeah… Me, too. I love you, you know.”

“Love you, too. And that’s enough for me.”

‘S just a quiet little date, there in the chateau’s gardens. Not somethin’ anyone oughta intrude on -- just a guy an’ a gal who c’n be happy with each other, here at the end a’’ days.

Salim has his main squeeze Justine over b’fore things really get rollin’ f’r the day.

“Ah, Miko!” He says, “Allow me to introduce you to my positively lovely ladyfriend.”

Mom grins.

“Oh, he must be smitten to say something like that! Twitterpated, even?” Ka-san offers with a grin.

“I think somewhat twitterpated,” he answers in earnest.

“And loquacious, which is really his better romantic mode. Hi, I’m Justine.” They give each other a quick hi.

“Well, I’ll leave you two to enjoy your twitterpation! Your flutterhearting, even!” Ka-san couldn’t help but giggle a little, happy as a clam f’r them in love.

“...That’s certainly not a word.” He mutters after her.

“Ah, what would be a better word then?” Justine leans in, grinnin’ just a little.

“Well, there’s certainly amorous. Ardent, infatuated, besotted, enamored! Devoted, charmed, and captivated!” He recites. Man, that’s flexin’ some word muscles there! She smiles, wide and gentle.

“‘In other words, hold my hand’?” She offers him her hand, and he takes it.

“In other words, I love you.”

“I have a vision! This bare wall shall be blank no longer!” Magpie’s startin’ to pick up some art an’ all that; guess he thought a paintin’s too ol’ hat f’r a first work. I like, like, yoga out there; it’d be pretty groovy to have somethin’ nice there.

I get a real good listen-in on his process, which involves a lot a chatter; I’m gettin’ in some paintin’ before Kacie’s party.

“How do I look?” She asks, all sugar.

“Bodacious. I mean, like, 100% far-out chick an’ then some. Like always.” ‘s just a great look on her, dig? I think there aint much that wouldn’t be killer on ’er. “You ready f’r the big day?”

“Oh, heck yes. I am absolutely, 100% ready. I have been ready for ages.” The sweetness drops out an’ she sighs like ‘uh, space-time an’ whatnot, dig?’

“Cool, cool. Lookin’ forward to it.” Course, thoughts a-smoochin’s hadta wait some still. Brings a cat down ev’ry time, man.

...And it aint even like the party started on a real good note, dig? We were barely rollin’ when there was a sound from the compin’ room.

“Oh,” I heard Uncle Akira say. Some way t’ start a word like that, huh? “It must be time… Should I… sign off?”

“ ...Did I do alright?”

Trip, man. My heart lurched. I heard the sound a’ a lot a people, elbowin’ past that little doorway, that end a’ the hall. I heard the sound a’ a new guest, darkin’ the door.

“Did you do alright?” He asked, low an’ quiet-like. “I get that one a lot.”

An’ I wonder how y’judge that. Like, I spend a lot a’ time stressin’ doin’ good, an’ I usually mean there, like, bein’ a cool dude. Makin’ somethin’ better. But that aint the only pop to that quiz, right? An’ if you get faced with that question o’er and o’er, by a bunch a people… How’s somethin’ like that gotta answer…

 Course, I didn’t think that then; I just reeled. ‘Cause I’d put some effort to bein’ a cool dude for him, f’r that kinda snarky uncle who hung around the edges a’ things. I wanted him to have somethin’ center. Trip, man.

I wondered if I’d done the right thing. How’d we do, you know?

Half the party musta followed me in. Man couldn’t catch a breath f’r a tic there; had a knot in instead.Akira kept sorta waverin’, in an’ out with tears. Death was like a black spire, all points a’ darkness.

An then I thought f’r a second -- oh, trip, man, Kacie!

It was her party, an’ it went like this, huh? A drag to the max. I didn’t wanna see her cryin. But there aint no stoppin’.

Her mom was there, too, dude. Like it weren’t even a thing… Trip, man. Stone cold, an, like, not in a cool way. Don’t think I didn’t see her, watchin’ like it meant nothin, while the Reaper had his judgement.

“You certainly didn’t have a straightforward time of it, did you, Akira Kibo?” Nah, he didn’t. “And very often, it was your own faith in yourself that did you the most harm. “You had about 20 children, and you really didn’t know any of them -- not even the ones where you maintained a relationship with their mothers… Well, maybe in another life…”

Yeah, but! I was itchin’ to shout. That aint everythin’! Aint Uncle Akira a guy who wanted love more than anythin? Who fought hard an’ scrambled f’r it? An’, sure, maybe he didn’t always do right there, but…

Where he reached f’r it the farthest, tried the hardest… Where he went an’ faced it most human, the most honest, where he fixed trust he broke an’ trust in him broken...He found it. He won that, fightin’ with all he had. Even off against that self-faith he got so high on, you dig?

I wouldn’t let anyone put him down f’r that. He had real love in ‘im, an’ he found real love f’r it.

An’, trip. Guess the ol’ Reaperino dug him there.

“...But there was a hard-won happiness in this one, was there not?” He asked, almost gentle while he got his work done. “So I would say…”

He did good, in the end.I aint sayin’ that cuz Death did’rdidn’t say it -- it’s my truth, dig? He had somethin’ real, an’ worth rememberin, an’ I was, like, so happy an’ proud, t’ help him a little. An’ now I guess that fight’s over f’r him, f’r real… An’ I hope he got some peace at last, knowin’ he had somethin’ like that.

“You did well.”
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline Deme

  • Immortal
  • *****
  • Posts: 745
Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty - A Sweet Feeling (8/2/19)
« Reply #163 on: August 02, 2019, 04:18:40 PM »
Chapter 52: A Sweet Feeling

Dear Journal,

I could have had a better birthday. I don’t entirely mean to make a guy dying about me, but it really made things just a bit harder.

I’d barely gotten to blow out my candles when it happened. In the chaos right before we heard...You know...Everything, I was sort of thinking. What do I want? What do I like?

Honestly, I was kind of scared. You expect things to change when you hit a birthday, right? But last time, I didn’t really change as much as you’d expect. So I didn’t really know what would happen.

But I think things went a little more normally this time. I felt so, anyway, and I’m probably right! As for where I ended up… I liked working in the garden with Kite, and not just for the obvious reasons. (The obvious reasons are that he’s so cute when he’s working.) So I guess you could say I love the outdoors. And the other thing I love -- I’m allowed to feel this way, after all the fights with my mom and running out on my sister, right? I can love them from over here! -- but I love my family. All of it. Most of it. OK. Yeah, that’s more like it. The bits I was born with, the bits I found, and the parts of my family we’ll have together someday. Eheeheheheee, I’m pretty hyped!

I thought a haircut would look a little bit more mature. Cute, right?

 And while I was making my way through the new look department of my life, I added a few new outfits.

And picked up some things for Kite, too. Even Kestral got in on a good summer look.

But still, before you knew it, all of that happened.

“...What a day, huh?” I told Lily.I wasn’t going to exactly tell her how I felt, because that’d be a lot of mess and, well, I am the sister who has it together. “It’s gotta be really hard on everyone who was close to him.”

“Yeah, but that’s Kite and like no one else at this party.” Ice cold. “Still, it’s kind of scary, right? You’re minding your own business, and then there’s no more cake and you can’t make there be any more cake ever again. You reach the end of cake.”

“...Lily, would you like some cake?”

“We all die sometimes. Is it cold? There’s lights; is it bright?” Oh, boy, I thought. She was getting worked up about it. She probably was kidding at first, maybe. But now she was shaking a little. So I pulled her into a hug.

“Hey. Hey. It’s okay, alright, Lily?” There’s a tone you use, a little quieter than I normally I like. I’ve never talked to, like, a horse or anything; it’s probably a bit like if you were dealing with a spooked horse. Which, before you say a bad word about my sister (even though, being a book, you can’t; but that’s a sister privilege, is the point) , isn’t a knock: I think there are probably times a lot of people hit that animal-level feeling, you know? She just sort of ping-pongs around on it. But I’ve had the impulsiveness you see in cats sometimes, or, well, I get all sorts of wildcat level hot and bothered. Because I!! Want to kiss!! Boyfriend!!

But it was like that.

“It’s kind of scary, and kind of sad, but we’ll all be fine! We’ll move on, and the party’ll keep going, and I’ll get to kiss my boyfriend, and you’ll get to have some cake, and you’ll come over and hang out.”

I swung her into the family club. Nice birthday gift from Kestral, huh?

But I was probably saying that for me as much as her. But it worked, you know. I felt a lot better. Enough to leave her with her cake and move on to the next most important birthday thing!

“Kite, are you holding up OK? I know you two were close.”

“...Yeah, yeah. ‘M fine.’S crazy, ‘sall.” Now, Kite’s level of enunciation is one of those things about him that swings around wildly, but like that, it was just a sad dog of a speech. “‘S just funny… He was always there, y’know? Like, when I was little, sometimes he’d put me t’ bed, an’ I’d drive him up, dig? An’ now it’s like there’s kinda a hole where he was…. Nah, man, that aint that funny.” He shook his head, sadly.

So I thought about what I could do to help him. 

“...Let’s get out of this place.”

“Huh?” That jolted him out! Yes!

“I mean, let’s go somewhere. Somewhere refreshing, somewhere exciting! Call it a birthday gift to me!” Let’s see, now. As a kid, I liked thinking about vacations, but that sort of died. No vacations. Bah! But now, I’m thinking I’d like something fun! Camping or somesuch!

“I did getcha somethin’, y’know.” And I thought, ah, there’s my boy’s sweet smile.\

“Of course you did.” I pulled him closer. I’d meant to do this right from the jump. “I’ve been waiting a week for this.”

Worth. It. Because you know what? People die all the time, and that’s a fact that it’s no use running from. But I’m going to be OK, and he’s going to be OK, because you can make something beautiful for yourself, no matter what.

It was a real doozy of a kiss, when you feel something like that in your heart and in your arms. It’s a week of pent-up frustration! But I’ll spare posterity the details.

“Awww, it’s a perfect present!” I tell him once I let him get back upright.

“...Perf? Yeah, mebbe. That’s ‘cause you’re the cat’s flannels… Yeah, babe. After everyone’s done t’morrow, let’s scarp.”


“Short f’r Scarper.” He shrugged. I couldn’t help but laugh at that one. Where does he pick this stuff up? What a goof. I love!!  A Goof!!

“Oh, what am I going to do with you…”

“Not let go,” he suggested, suddenly earnest. Sounds like a plan to me.

“But I actually did getcha’ sumthin’ f’r now. I aint gonna put you on with a kiss, when that’s f’r everyday.”

He got me a nice new birdy mug, just the perfect thing!

That side of the bed’s mine, and so I for one’ll expect it filled in the morning! Ha ha, that’s maybe too much, huh? Besides, who has time to sleep in this household? No one, really.

I was overcome with a sweet feeling, and offered him up a present of his own. It wasn’t much, just a rose I’d picked earlier. But I’d teased him like that at first, too, didn’t I? Maybe I wanted to remember a new beginning like this.

“I’m looking forward to having my happily ever after, my far-out prince.”

I really am.
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline kattiq

  • Watcher
  • ******
  • Posts: 1817
  • Oh feebee lay!
Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty - A Sweet Feeling (8/2/19)
« Reply #164 on: August 11, 2019, 09:24:54 PM »
Aw such a sweet post! I also really love her side of the bed. That mug is super cute!! I'm a huge fan of clutter CC for sure.
Also RIP Akira, aka my favorite townie :'(

Offline Deme

  • Immortal
  • *****
  • Posts: 745
Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty - A Sweet Feeling (8/2/19)
« Reply #165 on: August 31, 2019, 03:14:46 PM »
Aw such a sweet post! I also really love her side of the bed. That mug is super cute!! I'm a huge fan of clutter CC for sure.
Also RIP Akira, aka my favorite townie :'(

He's surprisingly sweet. Actually, the whole tray arrangement is a fine bit of clutter CC from a CC stuffpack (that also contains a lot of the CC in this particular update), but I thought the mug would be a good part for its place in the narrative.

Also! Before I post it, apologies for the whole month it has been since an update!

Fire Emblem: Three Houses happened, you see.
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline Deme

  • Immortal
  • *****
  • Posts: 745
Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty - The Open Sky (8/31/19)
« Reply #166 on: August 31, 2019, 03:16:13 PM »
Chapter 53: The Open Sky

Time’s arrow, my dear friends, hangs not still in the vault of heaven, nor may it reverse upon itself! It advances ever forward! So, too, my darlings, the heart:

As I gave a valiant video game battle with my sister-in-law in all but law, I had time to reflect on this basic truth, perhaps because someone I might name kept blasting me, yes, moi, with so many shells I couldn’t even move! And I had time to reflect on this with that immortal treasure of my heart, Reiko.

Surprised? She aged up phenominally! Splendidly! Enough to make a man go weak at the knees with instant passion, speechless with beauty!

I’ll confess that I have never been speechless a day in my life, of course. But I am considering the atmosphere at play here, darling.

When the game was done, I pulled her to the side. It is a completely other nature of thing, to fall comfortably into the arms of one of your dearest companions, compared to the way you’re a-light with love when you see someone beautifully hurt, tender and injured and full of grace! It is not the weaker for its comfort or is its ease!

We did not in that moment say what passions blossomed in our hearts! We spoke, of course!

“How fare the scouts without my brother or I’s radiant and guiding light?”

“Fine.” A smile I think a touch sly played upon her lips. “Honestly, it’s not like you guys were den mothers or anything.”

“You wound me!” I collapsed, hand over forehead, onto the backrest of the couch. “But surely, you miss the adornment of my presence! Scout activities were hardly an essential feature of scouting.” This is my honest view of the experience; the drama club is at least truly about the drama. Which I bring in suitable measure!

“It’s certainly a bit more boring, anyway...It’s nice, though. Having you to myself.”

Well, a comment like that stirs the heart into a myriad of troubles. She, beautiful red-haired rose that she is, holds a treasured position in my heart...However, it is not a heart that can be held in whole by one person! But if she wished it so, do I leave her? How did your intrepid hero get out of this?!

Well, wonder no more. Remembering a certain wisdom bestowed upon me, I took her upstairs. I might have done so under the pretext of a teen makeover, but pay that no mind!

“Reiko...I consider this a matter of the utmost gravity. je t’aime, my darling, I think… That you’ve always been my precious rose. And every time I see you, you are more beautiful.”

“Awww….That’s some flattery. I thought I’d have gotten used to it by now.”

“I am glad you have not! I will be ever more inventive, just to prevent this!” I waved a finger before her, though. “However, and I say this firmly… My heart is not a bird to be caged; rather, the open sky is the place for birds… There are other people I do love, can love, will love. And if that’s…” I will admit, for a moment, looking at her face, that for a moment, my heart wavered. I only wished to comfort her… However, my heart must endure! Being cruel to my spirit would only make me resent her. “If that’s not something you’re comfortable with, then I think it’d be best to simply remain friends.”

“Hm. Well. I don’t think I’d want to see you with other girls --”

“Or gentlemen?”

“Or guys.But I kind of knew that about you to begin with, right? I like you for you, not just...My ownership of you.”

“Ha ha ha! Delightful! Yes!” What can a man do in such an occasion, his heart alight with joy as a magpie, but hold his rose to his heart and shower her with kisses?

Sending her into the most delightful peals of laughter as I tickled my way in a flurry across her lips, her neck, the hollow of her neck. For us, an evening of sweetness beyond the exquisite discretion of your dazzling host to tell!

But evening must sink into dawn eventually to dawn, and so we leave our hero to enjoy his youth!

My dear brother’s painting has been going quite well; I’m told he managed to complete his mastery of paintings. I’m quite proud!

The next day saw many of the house at our own business -- I to school, disappointingly, and my brother to his work, and while that was underway…

A few more had as their destination a place out on the town! The cafe played host to Kacie’s little soiree, as a date unfolded elsewhere on the grounds.

“You know, people are saying you’re pretty good to know,” Kate Munch told my almost-sister-in-law, over coffee.

“That’s funny. So I managed to get a good reputation before Kite, huh? My Kite?” Kacie couldn’t help but grin into her hand.

“He’s nice to everyone, but not much of a go-getter. His name sometimes sort of floats vaguely out of reach. You market yourself a bit more, don’t you think?”

“Well,” she said, taking a sip, “You’re not wrong. I’ve always wanted to be very well-liked by everyone. He’s content just if others are happy...Sort of.” I am quite in agreement -- sort of about describes the contentment he can have from only caring for others, whatever his opinion on the matter. “So I get it, I get it. It’s just funny.”

“You’re not wrong,” Kate answered.

And up the hill sat Salim and his dear Justine, deep in a grave conversation indeed.

“...I received my second notice,” he told her; I’ve heard from those who were eavesdropping (my mother, of course) that his voice was soft. He didn’t seem afraid, but he did seem heavy-hearted about it.

“That soon?...It doesn’t really seem fair, does it?” She sighed, with the saddest of smiles on her face. Not for her, the open grief! Does it not bring tears to your eyes, my precious audience?!

“It really doesn’t...Sometimes, I think I spent my whole life lazing around. It was fun for a while, but.. I think I might have wasted a lot of time by not meeting you sooner.” He sighed, shook his head.

 “But then, maybe I could have only met you when I did.”

“Hah. Just imagine! I think if I hadn’t seen how bad you were at flirting, I might not have liked you quite so much?”

“Doesn’t that make those the perfect lines, then?” The gravity of the moment was briefly wiped away, and they could smile at each other.

“No.” Cold, insistent, immediate. “But it did meant I could see what sort of guy you are.. And that’s a person who I think shouldn’t regret his life. Everything brought you here, right?”

“You’re very right about that,”he said thoughtfully.

“...But. I think for someone you should meet… You should meet Norma. She’s very nearly a toddler, you know.”

He beamed at her, bashful and apologetic and truly thrilled. And so they headed to her home in Oasis Springs, his young daughter for to see.

She is, or so I was told, quite a fine little girl. And her father held her very close then. It must be a wonderful and sad feeling, to know something so perfect and so brief!

“Hey, honey… What a beautiful girl.” Norma squirmed uneasily, but Salim found it in him to laugh. “Shh, it’s okay… You’re probably not going to remember this at all, huh? I’ll have to do it for both of us, and my books, and your mom.”

Ah! Such woe! What man can be kept forever, but by his works and those he loves? He bore a smile, of course -- how could he not, I ask of you, my precious audience?

And he retired to enjoy the afternoon sun with this woman who, having stumbled into his life at my mother’s grandiose and strange request, made it a jewel! Such is love, my friend, such is love!

By comparison, these trite notes which I am obligated to mention feel so petty. Miniscule! Really boring! The worst crime of all.

But Mom’s vampire research has been going well; I am told she has unlocked the power to snatch a vampire away from their dark power and lust for blood, bringing them back into the light!

“One of these days, it might come in handy. Most of the local vampires are trash, but the Vatores aren’t terrible,” as she put it.

“Scheming, oh matriarch?”


Kite’s career is going well; that’s level 6, isn’t it? It’s nice to see his success hurrying along.

And, I should attest… Those cretins in the drama club lack any inspiration. Any drive. Any soul!

I’d had it with them! And their objections to hiring a sequined crane for a school play!

The plan was to begin my vacation once all were at home, and I tell you now: I was so incredibly ready for it. And, perhaps in many ways, I wasn’t. And, most of all -- perhaps they were, those other young lovers. But enough of that for now! You, my friend, will have to listen onward, and hear the tale in another voice!
Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty

Offline Deme

  • Immortal
  • *****
  • Posts: 745
Re: The Avyan Immortal Dynasty - We're back and away! (7/27/20)
« Reply #167 on: July 27, 2020, 08:47:02 AM »
Note: Yes, we're back! I'll be trying to hurry things along a little, and catch up, but...In the chapters probably *after* this and the next, but for now! Welcome back! I've missed the family and missed you.

Chapter 54: We're back and away!

Sos, we hit the road an’ end up just driftin’ on to Granite falls. Biggest place there is, but there really aint a whole lotta space there in terms a right-sorta beds. Not when we got the rents, Kace an’ Me, Magpie, an’ Salim, Justine, an’ Norma. See, he was thinkin’ on mebbe stayin home, bein’ with his baby girl on her birthday an, y’know, f’r what time there is… But when he learned we could send’em a vite, he didn’t want t’ delay the trip none.

“Kite, honey,” Kacie asks. “We should probably get a tent or something, right? There’s only two double beds.”

“Oh, heys, tha’s how it be, innit? You don’t mind spendin’ some time under the stars, huh?”

“Not at all, if it’s with you.”

“I certainly wouldn’t be opposed to letting you two have the twin --” Magpie almost says, but then Kace is shootin’ him the deathest of gaze-beams, dig? “...Ah. I will gladly take a twin bed, my apologies. Oh, young lovers!”

“Man, playing cupid there really played some dividends,” Mom says when she gets to chattin’ up the local Rick an’ Justine.

“I mean, you didn’t really do anything,” Justine righteously lays out that truth, you dig?

“I set up Akira to set you up, and I’m quite pleased. I’m not taking unnecessary credit, or saying you owe me your firstborn, or secondborn, or whatever level of children -- you and Akira, right, so anything else would be third born, right?”

Justine flushes.

“That’s none of your business, Kestral. And didn’t you make my relationships unnecessarily complicated? So thanks for the free vacation, but… I’m hoping this doesn’t make my life harder.”

“...I just came to welcome you guys to the park.” Poor ranger-man, gettin’ caught in this.

“Don’t worry. He’s been a good soldier; why don’t you two just have fun for a while?” Mom smiles. “He and your little girl seem to be having a good time...A good use of vacation, that.”

“C’mon, let’s fly to the moon!” Seems a kinda sci-fan game here; I dig it. She laughs, puttin’ a grin on his face. Even o’er the sound a’ his back strainin’ for it.
“Moon! Moon!”
“We can play among the stars!”

‘S a sweet thing, pullin’ up a groovy beat like that to yell about a kid.

Kace an’ I spend about half the evenin’ just explorin’. Fishin’ fer a while. Just watchin the lines drift out over the river, man, that’s just the stuff, dig? An sometimes she’d butt up against me, leanin’ her shoulder on my arm, an’ laugh.

“What’s happenin’, Kace?”

“Nothing,” she’d say, an, trip, man, if that don’t just mean everythin’ outta this world. “I’ll race you to see who will catch some bugs first!”

She takes that one, at least at first, takes off tearin’ through the forest. Gotta take my own pace, y’dig, so a race just aint my bag, man. The moms mostly got t’ play horseshoes, an’ we settle down, spinning spook tales w’ Magpie.

“So, there’s this square, y’dig, never made a step wrong. Did what erryone said was th’ thing, went t’ a good school, married a nice chick down the road -- not groovy, just nice, y’dig? 2.5 kids, fence, dog, votes the way his folks votes, goes on’ thinkin’ anyone could have his life if they tried harder. An’ he didn’t make a wave ‘r nothin, not ‘till the day he died. He was scared, deep down, that if he flipped his lid, like he was really achin’ fer, well, trip, man! He’d spew the ever-world puddin’ all over the bruncheon, ‘r whatever scene he was in, you dig? They sky’d darken, the earth’d shake. So he kept his wig on tight, never said nothin.”

“...And?” Magpie asked me when I was done spinnin’ this yarn.

“And nothin. Trip, man, scariest story I can think of.”

“My dear brother, you are woefully insufficient in drama! Yes, the idea of a man living in the shell society binds him into without question into a repetitive grind is a portrait of woe, the bleak despair of midwestern values!”

“Yeah, you dig it.”

“ But how utterly lacking in panache! How lacking in dramatic stakes! You must present your man with moments in which he might have turned down another path, which his fear denies him!”

“...You boys are weird sometimes. Can’t we just do man door hand hook car door?”

“Arright, spin us a one!”

Tha’s why we were out, see; inside, Salim was dealin’ with the bed sitch, which had, like, some issues.

“She really is precious,” Salim said with a sigh.

“She is… I wish this place had had a toddler bed, though. Poor dear.”

“It is rather a shame, but...I just have to wonder at it. How peaceful she looks. How perfect. I...I’m happy you came with us. I’m happy I got to be here with you. I grant the tongues of man or the vaults of heaven no greater poetry than this: the whine of cicada, the total abandon of sleeping children, the love I feel.”

“That was rather nice, though, say what you will for the tongues of men.”

“But of course; men must try, or else why would they want to send a poet?”

He stood, but his legs just fell out, man.

“Oh, my dear...It’s a little too soon, isn’t it? I didn’t see...I… Goodnight.”

Man, his little girl, Norma, got her Z’s broken up by the noise; woke up just in time to see somethin’ she probably didn’t dig one bit.

“Da...Da? Wakey!”
But kids catch on quicker than you’d think, y’know? She cried an’ cried, seein’...him like that. Kids understand stuff like that, if you don’t flinch. Is all a part a the big turn, part a’ day an’ night an’ all that.

But trip, man, that death, like, got far out, you dig?

“I am the ghost of the wooooods~ Here to welcome you to --”

“Oh my goodness is that a dying man, Oh, I am so sorry! I shouldn’t be here!”

Well, he shouldn’ta been -- maybe I shoulda left him out ‘n all, seems like it lacks the kinda poetry he mighta liked, Salim.

“...You both will be coming with me,” the reaper said, when he came, shootin’ the ghost a glare for crimpin’ his groove.

 “Ahh...But you didn’t accomplish all you might have, is that not so, Salim Benali?...Well. You left memories, all the same.”

He lived a kinda life I gotta snap, man, livin’ to his own rhythm, you dig? Mighta seemed lazy, but, trip, man, isn’t that his t’judge, not yours? Everyone’s gotta go by their own way.

Justine ran in to Norma fast as she could, ‘cause, like, trip, man; imagine Mom tryin’ to comfort a kid that young… Trip. One a’ these days, that’s gonna be my job, huh, with some little somethin.

“Mama! Dada!” Her little chubby finger jabbed urnsward “Make no go!”

“I would if I could, honey,” Justine told her, like, the best she could. “Sometimes… You can’t bring people back when they go away. You can only…Only remember them with love.”

Norma wouldn’t dig them hard truths f’r a long, long time. She cried, an’ Justine started cryin’ up a storm, too.

When she’d gotten Norma tuckered out, cryin’ til she slept, snifflin’ on the couch, I knew I had t’ say somethin.

“Hey, I, uh… If you wanna, like, riff or somethin, you don’t gotta hold nothin’ back, you dig?”

“I...Thank you.”

“I’mma miss him, too, you know? Like, he was a far-out cat.”

“...He was so shy at first, it was… Really funny, seeing him open up, but before I realized it, I’d… Fallen in love.”

“An’ he loved you, too, man. Like, maybe he didn’t write all he wanted to write, or nothin, but, like, maybe that wasn’t all there was to his bag, you dig? He loved you, an’ he loved Norma, an’, like, that’s the kinda thing that goes further an’ further on, far-out an’ wild an’ undyin’, more than anythin’ else. Love don’t die, you dig me?” An’ you, too; you’ll remember him, an’ I’ll remember him like that, too, you dig? We’re, all, like, a part of this thing, man. Love’ll change, sure, but it don’t die. It’s a word that lives on forever, a groovy story burnin’ since the start’a life.

“Yeah… I...Won’t forget him, not ever. I’m glad, that of all the things he could have done with the end, he spent them with me...I hope Norma will remember him; they had so little time…”

“Hey, if she ever needs it...He did, like, write somethin’, you dig? His words’ll reach someone.”

He had his thing, you know? An’ he lived a life as good as anyone’s, man.

Stories In Progress:
The Avyan Immortal Dynasty