Author Topic: Lasting Legacies: an RKC story- Chap. 1.8 10/16/19  (Read 3085 times)

Offline Shewolf13

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Lasting Legacies: an RKC story- Chap. 1.8 10/16/19
« on: September 04, 2018, 10:57:20 PM »
RKC Challenge.jpg

Introduction

Welcome to my version of a Royal Kingdom Challenge ^^ The original one was for TS2 by Enbliththefair.  I stumbled upon GymeaLillie's version for TS4 and had to try it.  However, I am doing a few things differently.  For one, I have populated all the worlds with Sims of my own creation, and have downloaded builds for all of them except the one I am playing in, which is Newcrest.  My ultimate goal for the challenge is to get 10 families to 10 generations.

I am using MCCC to keep the other families in the worlds going. More specifically, I manually choose which Sims marry into which family (since the rules are pretty strict about who can marry who).  Then I let MCCC take care of the rest.

I will be controlling 9 families (with the possibility of a tenth that could emerge later on) in Newcrest.  There is one Royal family (the Dorans), two noble families (the Rosas and Campbells), two merchant families (Abbotts and Durants), three peasant families (the Grables, Hansomes, and Lancomes), as well as those who reside in the Abbey.  I will rotate between them all.  Each family gets a week of Sim time and will swap at some point between midnight and 5 am Sunday.

For my seasons, I am using technically 7 day seasons, but will be using the cheat to reset the season at the beginning of each week during one rotation.  To clarify; the season will change every 9 weeks so that each family gets to play in all seasons. In essence, one full rotation is only 1 week (since I have it set to age active household only).  To combat this time difference in the nonplayed families, I have entered very specific age settings into MCCC for everyone.  I will be manually aging up my played Sims using double what the normal age span is.

I have modified Gymealillie's rules by changing a few things.  I have also added requirements for each heir that they must meet in order to remain heir.  Also, I may bend and/or break a few too (mostly those that talk about what classes can marry) if it fits in with the story, but I will endeavor to stick as close to the rules and requirements as possible.  To view these rules and requirements, check out the link below.

Modified Royal Kingdom Challenge Ruleset here on Carls

Offline Shewolf13

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Important Links and Chapters
« Reply #1 on: September 04, 2018, 10:59:28 PM »
Important Links:

To Prevent a War- A One to Rule Them All Challenge is the the story of how Blakely went from being Lord Doran to King Doran.

If at any time you wish to read up on the other families you see peripherally, or you just want to take a gander at my *ahem* obsession with documentation, take a look at The Lasting Legacies section of my blog. If you'd like a summary of the current households in the rotations, go to Families of Newcrest or In Memorium. A summary of news in the other kingdoms can be found in this post: The Other Kingdoms.  You can also find some of my builds and the links to the gallery here: Buildings and House Tours.

Note: The above links are not needed to enjoy the story.  Feel free to skip them if you wish and just use the below table of contents to get to the story chapters ^^


Chapters:

Prologue

Family
Abbey
Doran
Campbell
Abbott
Grable
Durant
Rosa
Hansome
Lancome
Wk 1
Ch: 1.1
Ch: 1.2
Ch: 1.3
Ch: 1.4
Ch: 1.5
Ch: 1.6
Ch: 1.7
Ch: 1.8

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Offline Shewolf13

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The Families of Newcrest
« Reply #2 on: September 04, 2018, 11:02:30 PM »
The Families of Newcrest

The current households for each family.  If you are curious about previous generations that have passed on, check out: In Memorium

Note: The linked family names take you to my blog, where some general info is located as well as where you can get more details on each individual household member (like traits).  But they are not needed in order to enjoy the story ^^ To see a summary of each family, as well as the requirements the heir has completed, check the spoilers under each family.

Abbey
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Doran
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Campbell
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Abbott
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Grable
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Durant
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Rosa
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Hansome
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Lancome
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

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In Memorium
« Reply #3 on: September 04, 2018, 11:05:54 PM »
In Memorium

To commemorate those who have passed beyond the Veil.

Abbey:


Doran:


Campbell:


Abbott:


Grable:


Durant:


Rosa:
Spoiler (click to show/hide)


Hansom:


Lancome:

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The Other Kingdoms
« Reply #4 on: September 04, 2018, 11:15:23 PM »
The other kingdoms will be living their lives behind the scenes.  To see what's going on, check out the links or the small summary in the spoilers for each Kingdom.

Little bit of history:
There was once one Great Empire.  It was an amalgamation of peoples and customs.  Some of them had been added to it forcefully, others for protection from their neighbors.  After its fall several hundred years ago, it split off into several kingdoms: Newcrest, Winding Willows, Oasis Springs, Windenburg, San Myshuno, Forgotten Hallow, Bay of a Thousand Waves, Granite Falls, Magnolia Promenade, Del Sol Valley,  StrangerVille, Sulani, and Glimmerbrook.

Simdom.jpg

Note: Clicking the links will take you to my blog where there is a bit more detail about each kingdom and the families that inhabit them.  If you wish to skip them, go right ahead.  They are not needed to enjoy the story.  If you wish just to see a summary, click the spoiler under each of the kingdoms.

Winding Willow
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Oasis Springs
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Windenburg
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

San Myshuno
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Del Sol Valley
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Forgotten Hallow
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Bay of a Thousand Waves
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

StrangerVille
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Sulani
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Glimmerbrook
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

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Buildings and House Tours
« Reply #5 on: September 04, 2018, 11:19:18 PM »
I built all the buildings for Newcrest myself, but for the builds in the other worlds, I downloaded from the gallery.  To see the full galleries of my own builds, as well as the links for download and for the other buildings, visit RKC Builds

If you wish to search the gallery for these builds, the hashtags #Wolfie #RKC #carlsguide should all come up.  I will include their gallery links as well, just in case. For the links to builds I've downloaded, check out the above page on my blog. 

Newcrest
During the Great Empire, Newcrest was a thriving province.  After the fall of the Empire, it suffered a bit from rulers that were more concerned with their own power than their people.  Then the Bulwarks came to power.  Newcrest prospered as a kingdom under their rule. Now, King Blakely Doran is the first of his line, chosen by King Darian, the last of the Bulwark line in a contest meant to prevent a civil war.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Castle Newcrest
Home to the Bulwarks for centuries, it is now where the line of Dorans will rule.

Prima Dominus
Originally the site of the first castle, Prima Dominus was the home of the Dorans for generations.  Now, it will sit empty with its memories until another family earns their place.

Rosa Manor
A mansion built for entertaining, it suits the Rosas who have long been the diplomatic backbone of Newcrest.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Scholarly Sway
While never the most financially well-off of the noble families, the Campbells have been known more for their scholarly pursuits and their ancestral home reflects that.

Open Living
Pierce and Krista Abbott moved to Newcrest as teenagers.  They made their name by adventuring, finding interesting tidbits, and then selling them. Though their business is a passion, it will never take the place of the thrill of adventure.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Comfortable Abode
The Durants have owned the local inn and eatry for generations. It has allowed them to live comfortably in this spacious home.

Spooky Hallow
Originally an abandoned cottage with a haunting history, it was cleaned up a little when Makayla Grable appeared and moved in.

Farming Life
In the Hansome family for generations, this home is a modest little farm.

Fisherman's Cottage
The Lancomes are known for their catches; their home reflects their love the of the outdoors.

Newcrest Abbey
The Abbey is a place of peace and serenity, run by devout followers of the Matriarch. Those here at the Abbey are pretty self-sufficient, able to grow their own food, cook, clean, as well as being the place where many who can't afford their own crypts bury their dead.

Oak Barrel Tavern
A rustic bar where the locals go for good drink and good company.

The Bath House
Built by King Darian Bulwark's father, the Bath House is a musuem where the kingdom's treasures are kept and put on display for the enjoyment of others.

Oak Bend Swimming Hole
A good spot for fishing, a picnic, and even a rustic wedding spot for those that can't afford a wedding arch of their own, it's a good community park.

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC Story (Under construction)
« Reply #6 on: September 04, 2018, 11:21:31 PM »
Reserved, just in case.

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Prologue: Winds of Change
« Reply #7 on: September 04, 2018, 11:24:43 PM »
Prologue: Winds of Change

Mother Marian pulled in a deep breath.  The air held a chill to it, but Marian rather enjoyed it.  She loved the evening.  It was also her favorite time to pay her respects to the Matriarch. She had been raised at the Abbey and had always felt a connection to the Matriarch.  She approached the shrine in the chapel.  It was always so peaceful here, serene.  She felt the Matriarch was here with her at times like these.

Prologue #1.jpg

She knelt down before the statue, the representation of their Watcher and bowed her head.  "Our Matriarch, I appear before you this night to thank you for everything you provide."  A loud bit of wind outside rattled the window and Marian jolted.  She frowned and stood up. The winds had been unusually strong. It was rare that the wind became anything more than a light breeze, but not so the last few weeks.

It was a little disconcerting, but she trusted in the Matriarch.  She moved back to her place before the alter and knelt back down.  As she did so, all of the candles went out, plunging the room into darkness. She gasped as a light blue glow eminated from the statue of the Matriarch.

Prologue #2.jpg

Before her eyes, a shape shimmered into view.  It solidied and there was a woman standing there!  In a rather unusual costume, come to that.

Prologue #3.jpg

"Um-uh... Excuse me? Do you need something?" The Abbey was open to everyone, though Marian wasn't sure exactly what was going on.  Where had she come from?

"Hm? Oh, Marian!" The stranger greeted the Abbess with a huge smile.  "It's lovely to finally see you face to face!"

Marian was taken aback.  "I-I apologize, I-I'm afraid I don't know."

The other woman frowned, then looked down at herself.  "Oh!  Oops, I should really remember what I'm playing at any given point.  One moment."  There was another flare of light; the pirate hat and costume were gone.  In their place was a robe that looked exactly like Marian's!

Prologue #4.jpg

The Abbess blinked.

Her guest smiled, then looked up at the statue, pursing her lips.  "They never get the likeness quite right.  Only wished I managed to look like that, hm?"

Marian's jaw dropped.

The Matriarch- yes, the Matriarch- winked.  "Don't be alarmed, dear."

"I-I..."  Mother Marian had to pull in a breath.  "Is this a dream?"

"Of sorts. It is a way for me to communicate with you. I've come to issue a warning."

"A-a warning?  What kind of warning?"

Prologue #5.jpg

"Of things to come.  Please, come with me."

Marian nodded in agreement. She was quite calm for being in the presence of a deity. She blinked and they were no longer in the Abbey! She looked around wildly and then realized that the Matriarch had taken them to Oak Bend, the local swimming hole.

"It doesn't look any different than normal, does it? This is a place for families, for fun."

Prologue #6.jpg

Marian frowned.  "It is-"  She paused.  What did she call Her?

The Matriach grinned ruefully.  "Most call me Wolfie, if you'd like.  Or Watcher will do if you don't feel comfortable with the other."

"As you wish- Wolfie."  It felt very odd using the name, but if that's what She wanted, that's what She'd get.  "What exactly do you wish to show me?"

"You've noticed the change in weather?  The wind, the temperature slowly dropping?"

Marian's frowned deepened.  "I- yes, I have."

Wolfie sighed.  "Yes. For so long, your world here has been almost a paradise.  There's been a perpetual summer with beautiful days, cooler nights. That will soon be coming to an end."

"What?"

The image of the park wavered around them.  The trees were bare of their leaves; they were scattered on the ground.  Marian could feel the sharp wind cutting through her.  It sent a shiver down her spine.  Wolfie had wandered to the edge of the watering hole, looking around. She turned to look at Marian.  "It will only get worse from here.  The temperature will drop sharply, even more than it is now.  Rain and storms begin."

Prologue #7.jpg

"What's more, temperatures can rise, into dangerous levels. But the most dangerous will be yet to come."

The air around Marian shimmered again and then bitterly cold air drove the breath from her.  White flakes swirled around her and the ground was covered in a thick white blanket.  A thick sheet of ice, something that Marian had only ever heard of in stories, covered the swimming hole.

Prologue #8.jpg

Marian's teeth chattered a little.  Wolfie didn't seem affected, though Marian wasn't sure if that's because She was unaffected by cold, or if it was because this was all her own dream.

"Is this- snow?"

Wolfie nodded.  "Yes. The land will be blanketed in it during certain portions of the year."

Prologue #9.jpg

"What-what can we do? Can you stop it?"

Wolfie's face was a study in frustration.  "No, I'm afraid I cannot.  This is beyond even me right now.  However, there are things that can be done. Proper attire will have to be worn, you Sims will have to learn when to use protective items.  Overheating in the sun will be a problem.  Freezing here in the winter is a real possibility if the right precautions are not taken.  What's more, crops will be affected by these changing seasons. In order to ensure that no one starves, the King will have to take precautions.  Announcements will have to be made.  You will have to tell the King what is to come."

"Me?"

"Yes.  You've always had faith in me.  It's why I chose you."

"You want me to go to King Doran? To tell him?"

"I do. Blakely is a stubborn Sim, but he respects you, your faith.  I would also suggest talking to Lady Campbell. I believe she has noticed some of the changes, as well. Together, you can convince the King. When it comes down to it, he will do what needs to be done for those he's sworn to protect."

"I knew him.  His mother and father would bring him to the Abbey sometimes. He's a good man."

"He is. I will always be watching over everyone, but it will be up to you and the King to help spread the word.  Can you do this?"

"Of course.  Of course.  I will do all I can."

"I'm counting on you. You've never failed me Marian.  I wish you the very best of luck.  And never doubt that I'm there, watching over you." 

A bring light flashed. Marian closed her eyes.  When she opened them again, she found herself back in the Abbey, in front of the alter. 

Prologue #10.jpg

There was a whisper in her mind, "I will give you as much time as possible before winter arrives. But remember, spring and summer hold their own danger. Good luck, Marian."

The Abbess swallowed.  She jerked her head up, her mouth a determined line.  Well, her Watcher had asked something directly of her.  She wouldn't fail.  She would convince King Blakely.  She had.  She looked at the likeness (actually, Wolfie was right, it wasn't a very good likeness) of the Matriarch and nodded her head.  It was too late to try to make a call on anyone. But first thing tomorrow, she would be making a few calls.

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC Story Prologue is up! 9/4/18
« Reply #8 on: September 05, 2018, 12:58:40 AM »
What an interesting challenge! Good luck to all your families. And I have to say, I approve of the name you gave your abbess.
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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC Story Prologue is up! 9/4/18
« Reply #9 on: September 06, 2018, 02:12:09 PM »
Ahhh, the Matriarch herself arrives to herald the arrival of seasons.
Make sure the Abbess warns King Hotness to disable thunderstorms, hehe. Or maybe you are one of the mysterious breed of simmers who enjoy inclement weather. ;D
The preparation for this challenge has me reeling.
Looking forward to reading as it all unfolds.


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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC Story Prologue is up! 9/4/18
« Reply #10 on: September 09, 2018, 08:46:16 PM »
What an interesting challenge! Good luck to all your families. And I have to say, I approve of the name you gave your abbess.

@MarianT

Thank you very much ^^ I'm looking forward to sharing their adventures.  Hehehehe, it's a lovely name, after all.  I hope the character herself meets your expectations and lives up to the name.

Ahhh, the Matriarch herself arrives to herald the arrival of seasons.
Make sure the Abbess warns King Hotness to disable thunderstorms, hehe. Or maybe you are one of the mysterious breed of simmers who enjoy inclement weather. ;D
The preparation for this challenge has me reeling.
Looking forward to reading as it all unfolds.

Indeed, she has! I am so glad I wasn't taking a drink when I read your comment XD I laughed way too hard at your King Hotness comment.  Way too hard XD I haven't disabled anything quite yet.  I'm interested to see how it goes.  I mean, I've heard there's different weather in each world, so want to see if I have the same issues others have been having.  Since it's in Newcrest, figured it might be different.  Who knows... might end up using MCCC a lot here XD

Yeah... I'm insane.  I know this XD But now that's it underway, it's a lot of fun.  And it's fun seeing how each Sim is so different. Also a lot of fun to write, really.



Thanks for commenting and reading. First chapter incoming!

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1.1: Wheels in Motion
« Reply #11 on: September 09, 2018, 08:49:47 PM »
1.1: Wheels in Motion

"Mother, you were up quite early this morning.  Earlier than usual even."  Brother Randall looked at his Abbess across the chess board, his eyes inquisitive.

1.1 #1.jpg

Marian pursed her lips.  "Perhaps I was. I needed to collect the honey from the bees before I went on my errands."

1.1 #2.jpg

"I could have done that," Randall offered.

Marian let out an undignified snicker.  "You?  Randall, remember what happened last time?"

He grimaced.  "Hm... you have a point."  It certainly hadn't gone well.  While Marian could coax the bees into giving up their honey, Randall was not quite so lucky.  "Even with the suit, I managed to get welts from their stings..."

1.1 #3.jpg

Marian nodded.  "Yes, exactly. They can sense your fear."

Randall's expression would have been withering if he hadn't been struggling not to laugh.  "They probably can at that."  He laughed at himself.  "What can I say?  I love their honey.  Them?  Not so much."

"Everyone serves their purpose to our Watcher, including the bees," Marian reminded him.  Her brow furrowed.

"Are you worried? About your- vision?" Though he was a believer, his faith tended to be more in Marian and those around him than in the Matriarch. So Marian's vision-dream had been a bit to swallow.

"I suppose I am.  More in that I need to convince the King.  I know him to be a reasonable man, even a man of faith, but he's also a man of the world."

"Are you going to enlist Lady Campbell's aide in convincing him?"

"I wasn't entirely sure I was.  I know of her, but had never had the pleasure.  But I think it is my best course of action."

"So you plan on paying a call to her now then?  Which is why you were up earlier than usual."

Marian nodded.  "Yes, exactly."

"Do you want me to accompany you?"

"No, with me gone, someone will have to watch over the Abbey."

"Of course."

Marian stood up.  "We'll have to finish our game later on this evening."

*****

Marian stood on the street, a cold breeze sending a shiver through her.  The house before her was impressive by her standards, though the Abbess knew it wasn't the grandest in Newcrest. She looked around for a moment, then let out a soft breath before she strode up the walkway.

1.1 #4.jpg

She rapped her knuckles gently on the door and then waited a moment.  It wasn't long before she could hear the faint echoes of footfalls and then the door opened.  A rather handsome man opened the door.  "Ah, you must be Mother Marian.  Please, come in."  He stepped back to let her in, bowing a little. They stood in the tastefully decorated dining room.

"Lord Campbell.  I apologize for disturbing you so early," Marian murmured.  She had heard much of the new Lord Campbell. It was hard to tell what was true and what wasn't, though she could believe that he was a far better man than his father.  Lord Villareal was well known to most, even here in Newcrest.

Gunner shook his head.  "No apologies necessary, Mother." Though his eyes sparkled a bit, he used her title without a hitch.  "To be honest, Beatrice and I are often up early because of the twins."

"Oh yes, that's right! Congratulations. Twins are a blessing."

Gunner snorted.  Marian frowned.  "Oh, don't misunderstand me, Chase and Zuri are a light.  But two at once runs us a bit ragged. They insist on opposite schedules, it seems."

Marian's cheeks flushed.  "I apologize. I can only imagine how challenging it must be."

"Gunner?"

"Your appointment is here, Triss!" he called out.  Marian's estimation of him went up.  The way he spoke his wife's name and the look in his eyes as she came into the room was enough to tell Marian what she needed to know.

Beatrice approached Marian and curtsied.  "Welcome to our home, Mother. Your message sounded urgent.  Please, follow me."  She looked at Gunner, who nodded.

"Please, join me in the study.  We'll be undisturbed there."

Marian followed after her hostess. Once the study door closed, Marian let out an explosion of breath.  "I don't wish to keep you long.  But what I have to discuss is imperative."

"So I gathered from your message. What can I help you with?"

1.1 #5.jpg

Marian clasped her arms in front of her, too keyed up to sit down.  "I need to gain an audience with the King and I need your help in convincing him of something."

Beatrice arched a brow, and except for a slight narrowing of her eyes, her expression changed little.  "Convince him of what, exactly?"

"That Newcrest- and the world- will experience a change in weather, the likes of which have never been seen in our world before."

Beatrice's eyes widened.

Marian winced.  "I-I do realize that one such as yourself needs more proof-"

Beatrice waved a hand.  "I've been noticing a shift in the weather for some weeks now.  Tell me, how do you know?"

"The Matriarch visited me in a dream." 

Beatrice was silent for a time.  "It is no secret that I am not a devout follower.  But I am well aware of you, Mother, and of your absolute faith.  I believe you."

"Truly?"

"Yes.  Truly."

Marian had to hold in the sigh of relief.  There wasn't time for relief.  She still wasn't sure how much time they had.  The weather had already been colder than she could ever remember before.  "The Matriarch showed me visions.  Visions of heat and rain.  But what worries me more is the visions of snow and cold."

"Snow?" Marian could see the wheels turning in the other woman's head.  "That could prove disasterous. Yes, the King must be told, as well as the rest of the citizens. I will message the King now."

Marian was a bit taken aback at how quickly it was all moving. "A-are you certain?"

"Of course. The King must be told. And we must take steps while we can.  Do you know how much time we have?"

"No.  That I don't know."

"Well, no matter.  We'll have to do what we can as quickly as possible."

*****

While Mother Marian met with Lady Campbell, Randall was up to his elbows in laundry.  "This is what I get for waiting so long," he grumbled as he scrubbed a piece of clothing over the board. At least the courtyard was sheltered so the chill wasn't as bad as it could be. 

1.1 #6.jpg

Of course, he kept eyeing the bee boxes in either corner with a hint of trepidation. He finished as quickly as he could and took the finished load of clothes out to the clotheslines.

He wiped the back of his hand over his forehead.  That was one chore out of the way, at least.  He knew there was a toilet that needed some fixing, too. Pushing his sleeves up, he took care of that as well.

1.1 #7.jpg

Intending to clean up, he stopped when he heard the dull thunk of the massive knocker that hung on the front door.  Frowning, he went to answer it.  The Abbey was open to all.  It was unusual for anyone to knock.

"Oh, Ms. Grable." His palms went damp as he stared at the beautiful woman that stood on the threshold.

"Brother Randall." She smiled at him. "I thought I asked you to call me Makayla."

"Oh, right.  Of course.  My apologies.  Old habits." He realized he was keeping her outside and he cleared his throat.  "Please, come in."  He stepped aside and Makayla followed after him. She sat down on one of the pews and looked at him expectantly. His hands still damp, he sat down next to her.

1.1 #8.jpg

"Is there something I can do for you?" He couldn't take the silence.  Normally, Randall enjoyed the silence.  It was peaceful.  But he felt so awkward with Makayla.  Since she had moved into the old cottage across the road, he found himself more tongue-tied than ever. And it was hard to remember sometimes that he was a man of faith.  He had sworn himself in service to the Abbey.  So why when he looked at her did he have other thoughts?

"Randall?"

"Oh, I'm sorry.  Could you repeat that?" He could feel his cheeks heating up and had to repress the urge to get up and bang his head on the nearest wall.

She laughed.  "I came over to see how you and Marian were. Or if either of you needed any help.  I know it isn't easy to maintain this place all on your own."

"Oh, thank you.  We're fine for now.  It was kind of you to offer.  How are you settling in?"

"Pretty well.  It's been an adventure."

"That's good."  A silence descended once more, with Randall having absolutely nothing in his head.

After a little while, Makayla stood up.  Randall hurried to stand with her and almost tripped over himself. He could hear the light laugh and grimaced.  Then he felt a hand on his shoulder.  He looked at Makayla.  "I'll see myself out. Randall, don't be a stranger."  With that she walked to the door.  Before she opened it, brought a hand to her lips, kissed it and then blew it toward him!

He could only stare after her, dumbfounded. When the door closed after her, he jumped and then groaned.  She must think him a fool, an utter fool. It was just as well.  So why couldn't he get her out of his head?

*****

Marian sat at the table, holding in a yawn. She looked down at her plate of food.  She needed to eat, but it had been a long night.  She heard a door open and Randall padded out, yawning.  "Oh, Marian!" He frowned.  "You look exhausted."

She grimaced. "Yes, I know."

Rather than feel chagrined, he grinned at her.  "How did your meetings go? Did you see the King?"

1.1 #9.jpg

"I did. Lady Campbell was as good as her word and she sent her message.  The King replied quickly and we were told he would see us."  It was hard to describe, really.  Castle Newcrest had always been an imposing structure.

1.1 #10.jpg

"When Lady Campbell and I arrived, we were shown up to the Royal Chambers, of all places!" Randall arched a brow, but said nothing.  He didn't think he'd ever heard Marian sound so impressed.

When she didn't continue, he said, "Well?  Did you see the King?"

"Oh!" A faint tinge of color stained her cheeks as she cleared her throat.  "Yes, yes we did." She knew had known Blakely Doran for years.  He and his family had always been generous to the Abbey. But she hadn't seen him in some time, not since he had returned from his training.  "I was quite impressed with how well being King suits him."

Randall looked at her askance.

"I mean, he listened as Lady Campbell laid out her own observations and then listened to me with equal gravity.  There was no disbelief and he knew exactly what questions to ask."

1.1 #11.jpg

"That's promising.  What will be done?"

"He's issuing a proclamation to the Kingdom.  He, too, as felt the change in the weather.  He's asked that if our people should need it, if the Abbey could help with putting those up in winter time, when the snows come.  I told him, of course.  He will make sure the farmers have the seeds they need to plant and if they need assistance, the crown will help."

"That's good news, indeed!  It seems King Bulwark knew what he was doing."

"Of course he did. And though he has handed the throne over, I do believe he is still in an advisory position."

"It makes sense."

The two sat there, contemplating it all for a moment.  Then Marian stood up.  "I should see to the garden.  We will have to keep up if we're going to help those that may need it in the coming weeks and months."

Randall nodded. "I'll see to some of the old rooms here." It had been the two of them since the previous Abbess had passed on. Marian had her room, the room she'd inherited from Mother Sarah and Randall had his. The rest were unoccupied and hadn't seen use in many many years.

The two separated to go about their duties. Marian went to the small garden in the courtyard.  As she contemplated it and watered a few of the plants, she wondered if they would have to expand it, perhaps move it to actual yard.  It might be necessary to help feed others if it came to that.

1.1 #12.jpg

Randall did a pass through the rooms.  Most were in good order, though they'd need a thorough cleaning before they could hope to have anyone inhabit them. But there were a few things that needed fixing or downright replacing.  With determination, he went down to the basement where he kept his workbench.  He selected some pieces from his scrap pile and got to work.

1.1 #13.jpg

That night, Marian approached the shrine as she did every night before she retired.  "The wheels are in motion," she murmured.  "I have done what you asked.  And I will keep Watch, for you."

1.1 #14.jpg

She bowed her head. Now, it was all up to the King, to the elements, and to each of them to look out for those in their Kingdom.

*****

Other Kingdom News

1.1 #15.jpg

*****

Author's Note: Let me know what you think of the above way of sharing what happens in the other kingdom. I found a fun template for PowerPoint that gives a newspaper effect. If you aren't a fan, let me know that too! I will try to do an update after each week, but if nothing happens, I'll wait until the next one.  On to the new King's first week!

Offline wa-wa-world

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC Story Chap. 1.1 9/9/18
« Reply #12 on: September 09, 2018, 09:19:51 PM »
I love the little newspaper things! I think they're a neat way of getting info across great idea!

I definitely ship Randall with the witch and I love how you've built the Campbells house that tudor wallpaper is perfect lol
Gallery Id: Soda_Stealer

Offline oshizu

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC Story Chap. 1.1 9/9/18
« Reply #13 on: September 10, 2018, 12:58:58 AM »
The newspaper images are a fantastic touch!
Is Brother Randall sworn to celibacy or does he (hopefully) belong to an order that allows marriage?
What is Brother Randall's role in the Abbey?  (Is Makayla related to Adisa?)



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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC Story Chap. 1.1 9/9/18
« Reply #14 on: September 17, 2018, 03:01:35 AM »
I love the little newspaper things! I think they're a neat way of getting info across great idea!

I definitely ship Randall with the witch and I love how you've built the Campbells house that tudor wallpaper is perfect lol

@wa-wa-world

Thanks!  Glad you like them.  They're fun to make.  Hehehe, yeah, Randall and the witch could be fun.  We'll see how things go ;) I had fun building the Campbell's house.

The newspaper images are a fantastic touch!
Is Brother Randall sworn to celibacy or does he (hopefully) belong to an order that allows marriage?
What is Brother Randall's role in the Abbey?  (Is Makayla related to Adisa?)

@oshizu

Thanks!  So glad you like them ^^ They aren't too bad to make either, and they're kinda fun.  Well, technically, nothing against marriage for their order, though because she's the heir to her family, the rules state she can't leave her home, so he'll have to move should they get married. Randall is a bit of a handiman, and general helper to Mother Marian. The Abbey is all he's known, so it was always assumed he'd just remain, so marriage hasn't necessarily entered his mind.  But you'll see how his story unfolds later on ^^

And no, Makayla isn't related to Adisa at all.  She IS from Oasis Springs, technically, but was an orphan and wanted a fresh start, so came to Newcrest.

Doran update incoming!

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1.2: Like Father, Like Son
« Reply #15 on: September 17, 2018, 03:07:57 AM »
1.2: Like Father, Like Son

Last Episode:

When last we saw the Dorans, Blakely and Adisa met with King Darian and the others in the contest for the throne.  Blakely won. He is now King and Adisa his Queen.

They have since moved from Prima Dominus to Castle Newcrest. The household consists of:

  • King Blakely- winner of One to Rule Them All
  • Queen Adisa- his wife and twin sister to Queen Eve Azurite of Oasis Springs
  • Meredith- the housekeeper and the one that raised Blakely
  • King Darian Bulwark- previous king and the one that instituted One to Rule Them All
  • Prince Zachary- Blakely and Adisa's infant son; heir to the throne
  • "Prince" Maxim- Blakely's loyal wardog and companion; he's appointed himself as the protector of the family

My Dearest Amelia

King Darian looked up from his journal page at the picture of his beloved wife, letting out a sigh.

I sit here in the room you and I shared so briefly. I'm finding myself feeling both accomplished and melancholy. The contest is over.  Blakely won. I have to admit, it came as a shock, the revelation about young Adrian... to think, he was the son of my brother all this time. I don't blame Ferina for keeping it a secret, though I wish I had known. I always felt an affection for the boy. Perhaps, I knew or at least suspected.

He pursed his lips and rubbed at the back of his neck.

Though I was still in a bit of shock, the pride in the boy when he knelt to Blakely- I don't know if I can quite describe it. Too many I know would be too happy to take a throne, having no idea what it means or what it should mean. But Adrian does. In fact, I was proud of all of them.  I looked upon them all, the three I hand-picked and those they married with an enormous amount of pride. When it is my time, I can be secure in the knowledge that our home will be well-looked after.

He stopped and stretched a moment, letting out a chuckle. 

You'll enjoy this, my dear. In fact, you may say I deserve it. Though Blakely is King, he and Adisa refuse to take their place in the royal chambers. I thought Adisa would understand, but she backed Blakely's decision. I suppose I understand wanting to be closer to the nursery. Having to feed an infant in the middle of the night is easier.

1.2 #1.jpg

But now that little Zach is no longer in need of midnight feedings, you'd think they'd relent! But no... Blakely told me that the chambers reserved for the heir suits them just fine. I may be old and stubborn, my dear, but I'm not completely foolish. I've conceded defeat in that arena. While he may not be completely ready for the transition, he is certainly showing that my faith was not misplaced. The weather is already beginning to change. For the first time, we've had frost. And just the other day, it grew quite hot out, hotter than we've ever seen. So Blakely called a meeting with the other nobles to discuss some steps they could take to help illeviate any issues in the kingdom.

1.2 #2.jpg

It did my heart good to see them all working together, coming up with solutions.  Blakely took command easily, but he dismissed no one's suggestions, thought about each one. They did ask me, but only for opinions. I was ecstatic to see that. Blakely and Adisa will be doing a tour of the kingdom, to speak with the peasants and with our merchants. Adrian and Beatrice will be handling things in their own way. All in all, the kingdom is in good hands, my dear Amelia.

*****

For so long, the halls of the castle have been empty of the laughter of children.  If I have one regret, my dear, it's that you and I were never able to have the family we dreamed of. Before, I couldn't think of having a family without you by my side, but having young Zach running around now has been a treat. He's already a handsome lad and keeps his parents on their toes.

1.2 #3.jpg

He's almost a spitting image of his mother right now.  But he acts more like his father.

1.2 #4.jpg

1.2 #5.jpg

He already his father's confidence.  And he enjoys doing things on his own, bit of an independent lad. No mystery who he gets that from. But he and I have a little secret. One day, I was relaxing after a bit of a long day, and I heard steps on the stairs.  It was that little rascal!  He'd managed to get the door that I hadn't quite shut all the way open and had toddled right up the steps!

1.2 #6.jpg

I'll admit, I was so shocked that I didn't move. He walked over, calm as you please and climbed up onto the couch next to me and then sat there grinning, so pleased with himself.

1.2 #7.jpg

I didn't have the heart to scold him.  Truth be told, the little scamp has stolen my heart.  He sat up there with me for a little while and then began to yawn.  So I took him down to the nursery to put him down for a nap.  I set him down, intending to put him into his nightclothes and he had reached up, wanting a hug. Who could resist such a thing? Not I.

1.2 #8.jpg

He even managed to get me to read him a story! I'm not an easy touch, or at least I never thought so, but he's managed to worm his way in. I imagine this what being a grandparent is like, wouldn't you?

1.2 #9.jpg

*****

Blakely peeked in the door of the open guest room.  "Ah ha!  There you are!"

His son looked up at him, squeeling in delight.  "Papa found me!"

Blakely swooped him up into his arms.  "That's right, I did."

"Papa, swing!"

"What was that?  What did you say?" He was already tossing Zach up into the air, loving the way his boy shrieked with delight as he did it.

1.2 #10.jpg

"Plane, papa, plane!"

Blakely grinned widely, obliging as he lifted his son up onto his back and spread his arms out to the side.

1.2 #11.jpg

When playtime was over, Blakely took him into the nursery.  "Time for bed, huh, little man?"

Though Zachary tried out a pout on his father, Blakely just laughed.  "Nice try. Hey, look.  Someone's here to say good night.  Look at that, Zach, Maxim's here to say good night!"

"Puppy!"

Blakely had to bite his lip. Truth be told, he trusted Maxim with his life, but he had been a little aprehensive the first time Zach had run to him  and began to pet him and pull on his ears a bit.  After all, Maxim was a wardog, bred for protection and even attack.  But he'd not only tolerated Zach's attention, but had seemed to bask in it.  So it was almost a nightly tradition now that Maxim would help put the toddler to bed.

Blakely put his son into a jumper to sleep in. Then he set him down so he could give Maxim a big hug.  "Max.  Max," Zach babbled as he ran his hands through the dog's soft fur.

1.2 #12.jpg

Once their routine of him giving Zach a lick on the cheek was complete, Blakely tucked his son in. He kissed his forehead.  "Night, son."

"Nini, papa." Zach's eyes didn't stay open long and he was asleep quickly.

Blakely looked down at him for a long moment, feeling a tightness in his chest. Though he could be exhausting at times, Blakely couldn't imagine life without Zach now. He gave Maxim a pat on the head.  "Look after him, boy." Maxim often liked to lay on the little carpet for a good part of the night.

Blakely went to join his wife. They took turns tucking Zach in at night. With a precocious toddler and then everything else, especially with all the trips around the kingdom and some of the preperations, he and Adisa hadn't had much time alone of late.  He found her sitting on their bed.  He snuck in and wrapped his arms around her for a moment.  "Hello, my Queen."

"Mm, better be careful.  My husband is a vengeful man," she murmured as she leaned her head back against him.

He laughed as he scooted over next to her.  "I'm vengeful huh?"

1.2 #13.jpg

"Aren't you?"

His brow furrowed as he thought about that for a moment.  "Huh... it's entirely possible."

Adisa rolled her eyes and the twinkle of mischief wasn't quite enough warning as she drilled her fingers into the space below his ribs, his weak spot.  "No no no no!"  He tried to grab her hands but couldn't quite manage it as he was laughing too hard.

1.2 #14.jpg

"Uncle, uncle!"

Adisa sat back, her smirk very satisfied.

"I'm not the vengeful one, you are!"

She arched a brow at him.  "Of course I am.  I'm a witch."

He opened his mouth, then closed it.  "Ya know... I didn't think about that."

Adisa threw her head back in laughter and then grabbed his hand.  "Come with me, my King."

"Wait, have I done something that requires vengence?"

"Not unless you have something to tell me?"

"Nope, not at all."  He winked at her as they went into the huge watercloset that adjoined their room.  In it was a hottub.  They both climbed in and then let out a sigh as they settled into the hot water. Blakely leaned his head back onto the side for a moment, just letting the water seep into his sore muscles.

He felt his wife run her fingers down his side and so he brought his head back up just as she slid over onto his lap.  "No sleeping just yet," she murmured.  "I have plans for you."

1.2 #15.jpg

"I like the sound of that."

*****

"How's that?" Blakely dug his fingers into the knots between his wife's shoulder blades.

1.2 #16.jpg

She groaned.  "Thank you." She turned around, rubbing one hand over her rather large stomach. "The little one has been rather active and it's been hard to get comfortable at night."

Blakely leaned down close.  "Hey in there.  Give your mama a little break huh?  You'll be here before we know it!"

1.2 #17.jpg

"Mm, yeah."

Blakely frowned up at his wife as he straightened.  "What is it, love?"

Adisa grimaced.  "Most likely just the pregnancy hormones. But I'm worried. Since I've been pregnant, Zach's been having a bit of a temper issue."

"Yeah. I know.  But I think after this latest escapade, I managed to talk some sense into him.  I know he's a toddler, but he's a bright kid. And after I fixed his little castle, we played dolls and he asked me some questions about having a brother or sister."

1.2 #18.jpg

"That's good.  And I know it might take a little time for him to adjust. He's used to having us all to himself."

"Mhm.  I think it'll be fine. If anything, he's going to be a protective older brother once they get here."

Adisa smiled.  "You're probably right."

*****

Before long, it was time for the new baby.  It was a quick labor.  In fact, when they got to the hospital, the doctor just said, "Right this way, your highness.  We're ready for you."  It took almost no time at all, or at least that's how Adisa chooses to remember it. But after only a few hours, the newest member of the royal family, Prince Rhys Doran was born (pronounced Reese).

1.2 #19.jpg

When they got him home, Adisa had to feed him.  "Mama?"  She looked behind her and saw her oldest.  She smiled.

"Hey, sweetie.  This is your brother."

"Brother? Baby brother?"

"Yup, this is Rhys, sweetie. Your brother."

1.2 #20.jpg

Zach tilted his head, his brow furrowing.  He watched his mother put his baby brother in the bassinet.  Then she came and tucked him in, even reading him a little story. He closed his eyes and waited for his mama to leave.  Once he could no longer hear her footsteps, Zach crawled off his bed and went to the heavy door. His parents tended to leave the door open a crack so that they could hear better. Zach used this to push it open and then made his way down the hall. He'd gotten fast at walking and had even mastered running around. Knowing his little excursion would be cut short if anyone saw him, he made sure to move quietly.

Somehow, he managed to get to the first floor of the castle and then climbed down the stairs that led to the very lowest floor, the basement!

1.2 #21.jpg

He didn't stop there.  He made his way through the double doors and into the crypt.  The crypt was where the kings of old were laid to rest as well as the small shrine that had been erected to the first Bulwark.  Zach found himself staring up at the painting on the wall, his head cocked to the side.

1.2 #22.jpg

After a little while, Zach turned and went back the way he had come. He crawled back up the big set up stairs and then back up the three flights toward the nursery. He had made it back and gotten in the door when he realized that he wasn't alone.  "Zachary!" Oh no!  It was Meredith!  She'd gone in to check on him and had found him gone.  She picked him up.  "Just where have you been, young man?"

1.2 #23.jpg

Maxim let out a bark.  He'd come in with Meredith and wasn't overly happy that his young master hadn't been in bed where he was supposed to.  "Zach, no more midnight excursions ok?  Gotta stay in bed," Meredith admonished him gently as she set him down and knelt so she could look him in the eyes, Maxim looking on.

Zach looked down at his feet of a moment, then back up and nodded.  "Ok, Merry."  He couldn't quite handle Meredith yet.

1.2 #24.jpg

Meredith gave him a hug.  "Good boy.  Now, c'mon, let's get you back to bed."

Once she made sure the boy was asleep, she and the dog both padded off to their own beds and the castle was quiet once more.

*****

Other Kingdom News

1.2 #25.jpg

** To download the templates that are used for the newspapers, head to Presentation Magazine

Offline oshizu

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC Story Chap. 1.1 9/9/18
« Reply #16 on: September 17, 2018, 12:33:39 PM »
Oh, Zachary is so beautiful with his violet eyes and red hair against his darker skin!
I notice that he is described as "heir to the throne." So the firstborn automatically becomes the Crown Prince or Crown Princess?
Zach is positively shooting daggers when Adisa is holding Rhys.

Goodness, all those stairs! Zach must have maxed his Movement by now, lol.
Will you be buying Age-Down Treats for Maxim so that he'll live at least as long as the reigning King Hotness?
(When taken by an adult dog or cat, the treat extends life by roughly 20 days.)
Hah, here I am worrying about Maxim's longevity...

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC Story Chap. 1.2 9/17/18
« Reply #17 on: September 27, 2018, 11:16:24 PM »
Oh, Zachary is so beautiful with his violet eyes and red hair against his darker skin!
I notice that he is described as "heir to the throne." So the firstborn automatically becomes the Crown Prince or Crown Princess?
Zach is positively shooting daggers when Adisa is holding Rhys.

Goodness, all those stairs! Zach must have maxed his Movement by now, lol.
Will you be buying Age-Down Treats for Maxim so that he'll live at least as long as the reigning King Hotness?
(When taken by an adult dog or cat, the treat extends life by roughly 20 days.)
Hah, here I am worrying about Maxim's longevity...


@oshizu

Yeah, soon as I saw him, I started squeeing XD  Yes, as the rules state, first born becomes heir, at least with nobles and royals. Merchants are also first born, except if the children and parents ever become disliked and then it can go to the next born. Peasants aren't necessarily first born.  Yeah, that was in his anger phase from just having discovered an unwanted sibling XD

Ha, yeah, he's maxed movement already lol.  It's one good thing about huge houses hehehe. Well, I'll be honest, because of the settings I have for aging set to, Maxim will be around for a while, no treat needed.  To be quite honest, I am NOT looking forward to losing any pets...

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1.3: Two + Two (+ One) Makes a Family
« Reply #18 on: September 27, 2018, 11:22:45 PM »
1.3: Two + Two (+ One) Makes a Family

Last Epidsode

When we last visited the Campbell's, Lady Beatrice and her husband Lord Gunner (of the Villareals of Windenburg) had twins.  Lady Beatrice also informed her fellow candidates for the throne that one of their number was of Bulwark blood.  But when it became apparent that Lord Adrian was more than happy to swear allegience to Blakely, she and Gunner did so as well.

Shortly after, the Abbess of Newcrest Abbey, Mother Marian, met with Lady Beatrice in a bid to gain an audience with the new King about the coming weather changes.

Now, the household awaits the coming of these changes.  They reside at Scholarly Sway in Newcrest and the household consists of:

  • Lady Beatrice- matriarch and head of the Campbell line
  • Lord Gunner- Beatrice's husband, illegitmate son of Ezekiel Villareal of Windenburg, though he was acknowledged, he couldn't inherit. Also played an important role in the civil war, helping ensure King Kellen's survival and eventual return to his throne
  • Lord Chase- the first born child, older twin to Lady Zuri and heir to the Campbell title
  • Lady Zuri- the second born child, younger twin to Lord Chase
  • "Lady" Mira- a cat that adopted Beatrice and now has four humans to look after

Taking care of twins was definitely a two person job.  Luckily, Beatrice and Gunner had gotten fairly adept at it. That and their children decided to give them a break by syncing their schedules.

1.3 #1.jpg

Beatrice settled their daughter back into her bassinet as Gunner put Chase back into his.  The two smiled at one another.  "Think we can fit in a small nap?" Gunner asked hopefully.

"Knowing them?  I doubt it." Beatrice grinned.  "But we could certainly try!"

It was one of the few times they managed to catch a little sleep.  In between both of their duties, Beatrice's volunteering at the clinic, and trying to find time for each other, Gunner and Beatrice were quite busy and sleep seemed to be a distance memory at times. Naps were a rarity. After a short nap, Beatrice got up, refreshed for the first time in a while.  She padded down to the kitchen in her dressing gown. "Merow!

Beatrice looked down, smiling at Mira.  "How's my girl?" she cooed, reaching down to give Mira a scritch under the chin.

1.3 #2.jpg

She picked her up and gave her a little snuggle.  "That's my little girl."  Mira mewed and lifted her head up to nuzzle against Beatrice's cheek.

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Heavy footfalls on the stairs made Mira wriggle.  Beatrice set her down and the cat let out a meow of greeting as Gunner enetered the kitchen.  "Hello, my loves."  He bent down to give Mira a quick scratch behind the ears and then went to his wife and kissed her cheek.

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Beatrice smiled at him and they both took a seat at the counter.  Mira, not to be forgotten, jumped up on the counter in front of them, giving them both a coy look.

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Gunner laughed.  "Show-off," he accused the cat.

Beatrice grinned when he still gave an adsent-minded rub down the cat's back.  "We probably shouldn't let her on the counter," Beatrice mused, looking at Mira.

"Why not?" Gunner asked.  "This is her house too." He reached over rub his hand on the top of Mira's head.  "Isn't that right?" She purred in answer.

Beatrice laughed.  "You have a point."  A cry split the air.  "Oo, that's our cue."  The two slid off the stools, gave Mira one last scritch each and then went upstairs to see to their waking children.

*****

Time has a way of going far more quickly than anyone realizes until they look back and wonder where it all went.  It was no different for Gunner and Beatrice when they realized their little babies were toddlers already. Toddlers with their own little personalities already.  There was no doubt that they were twins.  The two were very close.

1.3 #6.jpg

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They're not quite identical, but it's fairly close.  They definitely have their father's eyes, at least their color.  Only time will tell as they develop which of their parents they resemble more.

1.3 #8.jpg

One thing is for sure. The two are very different in personality.  Little Zuri was a talker.  In fact, she'd talk and babble your ear off, given half a chance. And she loved hugs.  Whether it was her papa, or her big dino, hugging was her favorite pasttime.

1.3 #9.jpg

Her brother, on the other hand, was more of a rough and tumble sort. He loved to play. But he didn't have a temper.  In fact, he was more apt to cry when upset then have a tantrum like his sister.

1.3 #10.jpg

"Zuri Campbell! Stop right there young lady!" Gunner's eyes were narrowed as he looked down at his daughter. She looked up at him with that sweet smile, but he had to grit his teeth. He had to be strong with her. "Inside, now, young lady.  There will be no more messes!" When her lower lip protruded, he almost caved. He hated seeing her upset! "C'mon, Zuri.  Inside now." His voice was gentler than he wanted, but he figured he'd scolded her enough.

1.3 #11.jpg

How did other parents do this?! If this kept up, by the time they were teenagers (something he was trying very hard not to think about), he was going to be a gibbering mess! Hm... he'd have to ask.

"Hey Triss?"

She looked up from where she was working on her computer.  "Yes?"

"What do you think about having some of the others over?"

She frowned.  "Others?"

He nodded.  "Well, I was thinking of their kids, specifically.  Thought it might be nice for the kids to meet others their own age.  Prince Zach is their age. Adrian's little girl is too.  In fact, I could invite my little brother and even Dianna's little one is close in age."  The fact that his baby sister had a baby of her own was still taking some getting used to.

Beatrice pursed her lips.  "I don't see why not.  We'll have to get some equipment.  I've been meaning to get something for the kids to play on in the yard. We could have it later in the week, though I don't know how many of the others would be able to join us."  She stood up, thinking.  "Why don't we invite King Kellen as well? His little boy is also about the same age."

"Hey, you're right!  I haven't seen Kellen in a while.  Not since his boy was born, even."  He kissed her cheek.  "So, we're doing this, huh?"

"Seems we are," she confirmed.  Their home wasn't meant for entertaining, but it seemed they were going to be doing so anyway.  "I'll begin planning."

*****

Gunner flopped on their bed.  "Wh-what did we just do?"

Beatrice was already there.  "We lost our minds, that's what we did."

He groaned.  "I didn't know toddlers and their parents could make such a mess."

His wife grunted in response, too tired to articulate much of anything.  "Least the twins went down to sleep easily," he murmured.  In fact, it had been the easiest bedtime ever.  They had both nodded off before either of their stories were finished.

1.3 #12.jpg

At least everyone had enjoyed themselves.  All the kids had played on the equipment that Beatrice had managed to get.

1.3 #13.jpg

And everyone had come, at least all the kids. Prince Zachary came, with King Darian of all people!  His nephew, little Ronan, was a right gentleman and accompanied by his mother and grandmother who had also brought the twin's uncle, Anthony. Prince Jalen and his father both came. And Adrian came with his daughter, Jayda.

1.3 #14.jpg

Gunner had to admit that helping Zuri up the slide for the first time and catching her at the bottom had been a highlight.

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Of course, having to chase after their future king to make sure he didn't hurt himself had been both fun and nerve-wracking.  That little boy was a bit of a handful already, but a good-natured one.

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Gunner sighed as his eyes closed.  Beatrice had already dropped off to sleep.  It had been quite a job to get everything cleaned up and a lot of it had fallen to her while he'd run herd on the toddlers while they bid their caretakers and escorts goodbye. 

*****

"Ya know, I'm not sure having a meeting with my boss- who happens to be my wife- is any more comfortable here at home," Gunner joked as he sat down across from his wife at the chess board. "Of course, being that you're in your dressing gown, it makes it all worth while."

1.3 #17.jpg

Beatrice let out an unlady-like snort.  "Down boy. I know you're kidding.  Though I do have an assignment for you."

He frowned.  "You do?"

She nodded.  "I do. Kellen contacted us. He has some information I've been looking for. I'd like you to meet with him."

Gunner arched a brow.  "An assignment huh? Triss, I've earned my way to being a field agent.  I even went through the hoops you had me jump through.  This wouldn't be a way to keep me out of the field, would it?"

His wife's smirk came quickly, far more quickly than it once would have.  "The thought has crossed my mind, I'll admit. But no.  Kellen has information and has offered to share it.  Sending his friend seemed like a good idea.  And I figured it would be good to take the kids, too."

His eyes widened.  "Wait a minute... you want me to take the kids? With me? Alone?"

Beatrice's smirk became a full-blown grin.  "My dear, you aren't scared to take the kids on an outing by yourself, are you?"

"N-no, of course not."  He pursed his lips. 

His wife laughed.  "You'll be fine, big strong man that you are."  She patted his hand.

He glowered at her.  "You're enjoying this a bit too much."

"Never too much, dear.  Never too much."

*****

"You two behave.  You stay here with Prince Jalen, ok?  King Kellen and I have something to talk about," Gunner told his twins as they entered one of the parlors of Windenburg Castle.

"I'll keep an eye on them," Queen Emilia told him with a smile.  "Go on."

Chase made a beeline for the opposite side of the room, curious and wanting to see everything.  But his sister loved having an audience, so she went right to Prince Jalen, babbling excitedly.

1.3 #18.jpg

In fact, when Gunner came back in after his meeting (and a bit of reminiscening and catching up), he found Zuri dominating the room as both of the boys nodded along to what she said.

Queen Emilia laughed.  "She's quite the little entertainer already."

Gunner grinned.  "Yes she is."  He bid his thanks and his goodbye to the Queen and collected his children.  "Ok, c'mon you two.  Time to go home!"

"Home, home!" Zuri babbled.  "Papa, bring J'len home with us?"

Gunner blinked.  "No sweetie.  He stays here.  But he can come visit, ok?"

"Ok Papa, ok."

Emilia laughed and she and her son waved to them as they left.

"No, Zuri.  He lives here.  No, Zach can't come live with us either.  They have their own homes, child!" Gunner's voice echoed back as he took his children home.

*****

In the other kingdoms"

1.3 #19.jpg

1.3 #20.jpg

Offline oshizu

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC Story Chap. 1.3 9/27/18
« Reply #19 on: September 28, 2018, 03:08:27 AM »
The Campbell twins are adorable with Papa's green eyes!
Except for their eyebrows, they look quite similar.  Can't wait to see if/how that changes on their next birthday.

Zuri is quite the socialite. Is she a charmer? Is Chase a wild child?
I've never hired a butler while playing rotationally before. What would happen, I wonder, if the Campells hired a butler.
Would Ferina's love interest show up? That really wouldn't do!!!
My RDC spawned 3 different nannies, so I'm just curious whether rotational gameplay results in multiple butlers as well.
Haha, I'm not asking you test that for me. I'm just thinking out loud!

Zachary is so cute in his black short-pants suit! I can't figure out who Ronan and "the twin's uncle Anthony" are.
Ronan is Gunner's sister's son? But when you say "his grandmother" do you mean Gunner's biological mother or the Villareal patriarch's wife?
Then, is Anthony technically Gunner's half-brother? Is he the one in the turquoise shirt?

I am loving Beatrice and Gunner's rapport these days. I guess the twins leave them no energy to disagree.  ;)

Look at those newspaper clippings! All the households are growing like crazy!

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC Story Chap. 1.3 9/27/18
« Reply #20 on: October 03, 2018, 03:03:15 PM »
The Campbell twins are adorable with Papa's green eyes!
Except for their eyebrows, they look quite similar.  Can't wait to see if/how that changes on their next birthday.

Zuri is quite the socialite. Is she a charmer? Is Chase a wild child?
I've never hired a butler while playing rotationally before. What would happen, I wonder, if the Campells hired a butler.
Would Ferina's love interest show up? That really wouldn't do!!!
My RDC spawned 3 different nannies, so I'm just curious whether rotational gameplay results in multiple butlers as well.
Haha, I'm not asking you test that for me. I'm just thinking out loud!

Zachary is so cute in his black short-pants suit! I can't figure out who Ronan and "the twin's uncle Anthony" are.
Ronan is Gunner's sister's son? But when you say "his grandmother" do you mean Gunner's biological mother or the Villareal patriarch's wife?
Then, is Anthony technically Gunner's half-brother? Is he the one in the turquoise shirt?

I am loving Beatrice and Gunner's rapport these days. I guess the twins leave them no energy to disagree.  ;)

Look at those newspaper clippings! All the households are growing like crazy!

@oshizu

Yeah, I can't wait to see them when they get older.  I have a feeling, just looking at their profiles, that the Villareal genes will be strong.  But we'll see, they might surprise me.  I do love their eyes, though. Actually, Zuri is Silly, but she loves to talk to people. She's always talking, wishing to talk and share jokes, etc. Chase is angelic, but his whims are all about the playing XD lol so he doesn't throw tantrums, but he does cry.

Ya know, I think it would be a different one.  But I can't absolutely confirm it XD

Hehe, I think that the twins have given Beatrice some perspective.  For one, she doesn't have time to be insecure like she did.  And as she and Gunner tackle parenting together, her trust has gone up quite a lot.  Kids change a lot of things hehehe.  Now, that being said, doesn't mean they still don't disagree XD boy, do they still disagree, but that's a couple thing.

Oh tell me about it XD this is after I lowered the percentages with the new MCCC lol.

Update incoming!

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1.4: The Jungle Calls
« Reply #21 on: October 03, 2018, 03:08:43 PM »
1.4: The Jungle Calls

"Pierce, have you read this paper?" Krista Abbott looked up from the paper she had been reading.

"No, I haven't had a chance."  Her husband strode over and dropped down on the couch next to her, a bowl of fruit in his hand.

1.4 #1.jpg

She passed the one paper she was reading to him.  He frowned as he read.  "Wow, this is crazy.  I know the King sent out annoncements, but still.  Hard to believe huh?"

1.4 #2.jpg

Krista nodded.  "Yeah.  It's crazy."  A shiver went down her spine.  "Good thing we'll be leaving in a few days for a sunnier climate, huh?"

"Well, we hope so," Pierce corrected with a grin.  He sat back, reading more of the papers that Krista had scattered around.

1.4 #3.jpg

He and Krista enjoyed traveling and they liked staying abreast of the news so they had subscribed to as many papers as they could, even paying the extra to have some sent from the other kingdoms.  It was well worth it.

"Anything from our destination?" he asked his wife.

She shook her head.  "No.  So that's something, at least, though you know the Selvadoradians are a bit- insular."

"That's true.  Well, we'll certainly see when we arrive."

*****

Getting to Selvadorado was always a long trip, but it was well worth it to Pierce and Krista.  It held a special place in their hearts, since it is where they met. Unlike then, however, they worked together now. But first, it was time to settle in. Their little two bedrom bungalow was ready.

1.4 #4.jpg

Not that they would stay there long. As soon as they acquired sufficient supplies, they'd be heading out to the jungle. "It's so good to be back." Krista pulled in a deep breath.

Pierce looked over at her, grinning.  "It is, isn't it?  Been too long."

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"It really has."  He stood up, bouncing on his heels.  "I think I'm going to head to the marketplace.  You want to come with me?"

Krista thought about it for a moment.  "I think I may stick around here.  But you go on.  Enjoy yourself."

He kissed her cheek.  "I'll be back soon, sweetheart."  Pierce changed quickly and headed to the marketplace.  Even this late in the evening, it was full of life.  He looked around, smiling.  It really was good to be back.  He often felt as at home here as he did in Newcrest.

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His first stop was at the statue of Madre Cosecha in the square.  He remembered the first time he had stepped foot in Selvadorado.  She'd caught his eye then.  Of course, Krista had been the second woman to catch his eye and that had stuck. But still, he had to pay his respects to the founder of Selvadorado.

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Once he had done that, it was time to peruse the stalls at the marketplace.  That was the best place to find things that they would need in the jungle. The locals knew more than anyone about what could be found out there.

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After greeting the vendor (a lovely lady by the name of Maria), Pierce perused her wares, pursing his lips. There were a few things that would definitely be useful.  A few of the dolls would fetch good prices back at home, so he bought those. It was a good way to make sure the locals here were paid well and those who weren't quite brave enough to make the trek themselves would still get a taste of what Selvadorado had to offer. Once he had bought what he thought best, he returned back to the bungalow.  There, he found his wife happily digging in the dirt. 

1.4 #9.jpg

Selvadorado was rife with things left over from the first people that had settled there.  And at no time was his wife happier than when she got to uncover some of their secrets, even if the secret was a piece of their pottery or one of the many pieces of artwork.  Of course, there were also the forgeries that cropped up every now and again as well.  Some of the locals were more unscrupulous than others and too many tourists weren't very discerning.

"Are you done playing in the dirt?" he called to her, grinning.

She wiped the back of her hand over her forehead and smirked up at him.  "Not yet.  Find anything good?"

"A few things.  Will have to head back in the morning.  There's a few more things I'm looking for.  Maria said she should have some tomorrow."

Krista stood up, brushing herself off.  "Sounds good.  There's a few fun tidbits here, but they'll take some more study."

Pierce took her hand.  "Well, let's go inside.  We didn't escape the rain, you're soaked."

She grimaced.  "Yes, I suppose you're right."

He laughed.  "Too adsorbed in your work.  You didn't even notice!"

"Guilty."  Her grin was rueful.  "What can I say? I'm as bad as you are when we're exploring!"

His outrage was spoiled by the way his voice cracked at suppressing his laugh.  "I never!"  The two walked arm in arm back  to the bungalow to get ready for bed so they could be up early the next morning.

*****

It was a scorcher of a morning. The rain had stopped, but it had left the humidity and temperature sky high. It didn't stop Pierce from going to the market, though.  Maria wasn't there.  "She said you would be by.  She had a few things to take care of this morning, so I said I'd bring the items."

1.4 #10.jpg

After negotiating, they were finally equipped for their trek in the jungle.  Krista and Pierce loaded up each of their packs and then headed to the trail head.  "Ready?" he asked his wife.

"Always!"

He grinned at her enthusiasm.  With the familiar excitement spurring them both on, Pierce began to hack at their first obstacle: a wall of vines that blocked their path into the heart of the jungle.

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Pierce never got tired of it.  There was always something more to discover in the jungle. The scenary itself was spectacular.

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One of their favorite things was the waterfall.  It never failed to move them.  As he moved across the bridge toward it, Pierce couldn't help but keep his eyes on it.

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At the far side, even Krista stopped and went toward the edge, her husband right behind her.

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They stopped, admiring it for a long moment. Then Krista looked at Pierce.  "Do you remember?  When we first met?"

He smiled down at her gently.  "Of course I do.  As I recall," his voice was teasing, "you told me go away and find my own dig site. Though you used stronger words at the time."

There was a glint in her eye.  "Oh, I'm sure they were much stronger. But then again, you never were all that good at listening. You didn't go find your own dig site.  Instead, I found you in my temple."

Pierce threw his head back and laughed as he pulled her close.  "Never change my dear."

She lay her head on his shoulder.  "Of course not."

*****

Trekking through the jungle wasn't easy, but the two of them loved every minute of it.  Even the attacks by lightning bugs and spiders were an exhilarating experience for both of them.  But the best part was the arrival at the temple. Local legends said that it changed every time.  Others said that there were multiple temples, but the path to them changed periodically.  It was hard to say, and not even Pierce and Krista, who had made many trips, could say for sure.

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It was pretty late when they got there, but that didn't stop them. Krista was in her element as she began excavations in earnest, being sure to catalog and record everything.

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Meanwhile, her husband was in his element as he explored the temple, pitting himself against the traps, figuring out how to get passed them, using his wits and his strength.

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Eventually, it lead him to the heart of the temple and to the treasures within.

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But as all such things must, their trip had to come to an end.  After all, they had a business to run, even if the business was mainly to keep financing their trips and digs. As the two trekked out of the jungle, Pierce stopped and gave a wistful look back.  "We'll be back soon," he murmured as he slid his arm around his wife's waist.

1.4 #19.jpg

*****

Their little shop, Selvadorad-Ho! did a brisk business, for all that they only opened every so often.  They preferred running the shop themselves, though Krista had been toying with hiring someone.  They saw all sorts of people that came in to peruse their wares and to ask questions about what the jungle was actually like.  Even the former King Bulwark made a stop, asking the two of them if there was anything they would be willing to donate or that could be purchased for the museum.  They were still in negotiations.  Honestly, having something they found and studied in the museum was a highlight, but it was making the decision on which piece should go in there.

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As Pierce and Krista got home after a late night, they got ready for bed.  They crawled in next to one another and Pierce wrapped his arms around his wife.  "Don't worry dear, we'll be going back soon," Krista murmured to him, grinning.

Pierce chuckled.  "Oh I know. I do enjoy being home, too, ya know."  She pulled back enough to look at him, arching a brow.  "Krista, wherever you're at, I'm happy.  Do I love the jungle? Of course I do.  You do too. But it's nice to come home, just you and me, huh?"

"Yeah, it really is."  She cuddled close.  "It surely is."

Offline oshizu

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC Story Chap. 1.4 10/3/18
« Reply #22 on: October 03, 2018, 03:48:09 PM »
Oh, we are meeting the first merchant household!
What a great couple--they seem like the type who might often finish each other's sentences, hehe.
So many lovely shots of Selvadorada!

Would love to see more of their shop!
I wonder if Brindleton Bay experiences less of the weather-related deaths than other areas.
Though I only recently disabled thunderstorms/blizzards in my game, I haven't had a single climate-related death in my game yet.
And there I go, jinxing myself.

Looking forward to reading more about the Abbots!

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC Story Chap. 1.4 10/3/18
« Reply #23 on: October 21, 2018, 04:09:33 PM »
Oh, we are meeting the first merchant household!
What a great couple--they seem like the type who might often finish each other's sentences, hehe.
So many lovely shots of Selvadorada!

Would love to see more of their shop!
I wonder if Brindleton Bay experiences less of the weather-related deaths than other areas.
Though I only recently disabled thunderstorms/blizzards in my game, I haven't had a single climate-related death in my game yet.
And there I go, jinxing myself.

Looking forward to reading more about the Abbots!

@oshizu

Oh yes, that happens sometimes lol They work really well together.

Thank you!  I was having fun having them take photos of Selvadorado to sell in the shop.  I hope to do a tour of their shop, their house, etc at some point.

Hehehe, let's just say that those deaths were engineered by their terrible Watcher for story purposes XD You'll see some more of that in this next update!

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1.5: The Witch of Newcrest
« Reply #24 on: October 21, 2018, 04:12:53 PM »
1.5: The Witch of Newcrest

Author's Note: Allow me to apologize.  Somehow, I managed to get through the Grable's first week with far less screenshots than I realized.  So this will be a short chapter and might seem to not focus on a lot of what she's doing. Sorry about that!  But hopefully you'll enjoy what I do have.

*****

"Hm, that's an interesting combination."  Makayla looked down at the vial in her hand as she placed it in the mass spectrometor.

1.5 #1.jpg

She pushed the button to finish the analysis.  It would take a little while to finish.  She wiped the back of her hand over her brow and headed upstairs. Her little home never failed to excite her.  It was hers. She had never had anything of her own before.  Growing up an orphan in Oasis Springs, she had been well-cared for, but everything had been a gift from the Crown. Oh, they were generous and she had rarely wanted for anything, but it had been drilled into her by those that ran the orphanage that everything she had, she owed to the Royal family.

When she came of age, rather than find her place somewhere in Oasis Springs, Makayla decided she had a place elsewhere.  There had been several possibilities. San Myshuno would have been a good choice.  After all, the thing she loved most: sciene was much like magic.  They both had rules and were a terrific way to understand the world around them.  But it had been too busy for her, too chaotic.

Windenburg was still recovering from the war. There had always been something about Newcrest.  The stories of the Bulwarks had always fascinated her. When she had arrived in Newcrest and saw the small abandoned cottage, she knew she was finally home.

1.5 #2.jpg

Though it was less developed than San Myshuno and many held an innate caution toward magic, Newcrest suited Makayla quite well. It was still a bit hard to believe that she was on her own.  That she could provide for herself, make her own food when needed.

1.5 #3.jpg

It was all so different to what she had grown up with.  But she was quickly getting used to it. Pursing her lips, she went to the little garden she kept in the basement.  Her yard was plenty big enough, but since she often used the plants in her experiments, she preferred to keep it all inside where it was much easier to control and keep track of it. She picked out an assortment. Loading them into a basket, she left her home and went across the street.

The Abbey was always so serene. She held the basket under one arm and used the big knocker.

"Oh!  Makayla!" Randall stood there for a moment, blinking.

She smiled at him and held up the basket.  "I come baring food."  Her smile faded.  "How are the kids?"

He took the basket from her.  "Thank you."  He set it on the counter top, sighing.  "They're as good as could be expected," he murmured.  "Neleesh- his mother's death is hard on him. He doesn't speak much.  He spends a good bit of time near her graveside."

He motioned for her to sit on the pew.  He joined her, dropping down onto it.  He leaned his head back.  "In some ways, it's harder to deal with Maki and Ataksuki. They lost their mother too, and their father had to leave them here for their own good.  We don't even know if he's still alive."

1.5 #4.jpg

Makayla swallowed.  She knew that feeling all too well.  "Those poor kids." Due to the weather extremes that had cropped up, there were many families that were struggling.  No one had been hit as hard as those that traveled between the kingdoms. Many had perished during the cold temperatures.  Others had been too weak due to hunger and illness.  Three families had come to the Abbey for help. One of the adults, a single mother with a young son, had already been ill and she had passed away.  The father who had lost his wife shortly before arriving in Newcrest had dropped his two children off at the Abbey, unable to care for them.  The other father and his daughter were recuperating, trying to figure out what they could do.

She'd been bringing them extra produce to help out, and spend time with the kids, do what she could.  After all, she knew too well what it was to be alone.

"We'll do what we can," Randall murmured.  "Thank you for your help.  Though the Abbey is self-sustaining, we haven't had this many to accomodate in a while."

1.5 #5.jpg

"I'm happy to help.  More than."

"We appreciate it more than you know."

She put a hand over his.  "I enjoy doing it.  Plus, it gives me an excuse to come and see you."  She couldn't help herself. The way he blushed and stammered a little never failed to delight her. She laughed, then stood up.  "I should be going.  Next time, I'll say hello to the kids." 

Randall stood up with her and walked her to the door. "Makayla?"

She looked at him, tilting her head to the side.

"Thank you.  Truly.  I-"  He pulled in a breath.  "Makayla, I want to get to know you more. But I don't know what's going to happen.  With the children-"

Makayla stopped him with a gentle finger to his lips.  "Randall, you don't have to worry. I can wait.  I'm just glad that you haven't taken a relationship completely off the table."

He wasn't sure what to say to that, so he just gave her a quick peck on the cheek.  She blew him a kiss before she walked back across the street to her own home.

*****

Several days passed in which Makayla spent with her experiments. Truth be told, she could lose quite a bit of time when she was working.  It was a bit of a shock when she heard a knock at the door.

1.5 #6.jpg

"Oh, Randall!"

He stood on her porch blinking, his cheeks stained with pink as he averted his gaze.  "Randall?"  She looked down at herself, realizing she was still in her nightgown.  Rather than be embarrassed, she looked up at him, smirking.  "Is there a problem?"

"N-no, not at all," he managed.

Makayla laughed.  "Come on in."  She stepped back to allow him inside.

He sidled past her, still looking down at the ground.  He stood in her little living room, looking around while she sat on her couch.  "Randall?"  She waited until he finally looked at her, being very careful to keep his eyes on her face.  "You can sit down, you know."

He hesitated, but finally, he did join her on the couch, looking anywhere but at her for a moment.

1.5 #7.jpg

"Marian wanted me to thank you for the produce," he mumbled.

Makayla bit her lip to keep from laughing.  "She's quite welcome. Did you really come here just to tell me that?"

"No, not exactly. Marian also told me I was a fool." There was a rueful hint to his voice, some self depreciation as well. "I happen to agree with her."

"You do, hm? And just what are you being a fool about?" She batted her eyeslashes at him innocently.

"You really want me to say it?"

"Yes."

It surprised a chuckle out of him.  "I'm a fool for letting someone like you go."

Makayla hid her surprise- and delight- by looking down at her hand for a moment.  "Is that so? Do you agree?"

"I do."  He looked at her now. "Makayla, I want to find out what we can be together.  But- I can't just leave the Abbey.  Not now.  Even with Hector there, I don't dare leave Marian alone. Not with all the children."

"Oh Randall, I would never ask that of you.  And I will do everything I can to continue to help. In fact, why don't I go get dressed, then we can both go over?  I have some more fruits and veggies I can give.  My plants have been producing really well, far more than I will be able to use."

"Ok.  Thank you, Makayla."

She blew a little kiss to him as she went upstairs to change.  When she came back down, Randall looked almost relieved.  "If I didn't know any better," she told him, "I'd think you didn't like the way I look."

"What?  What?" He looked so bewildered, Makayla couldn't hold in her laugh.

"Randall, you make it too easy, you know that? I'm just having you on. You take things so seriously." He looked so cute, so flustered.  Before she knew what she was doing, she'd taken a step toward him and pressed her lips to his!

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She pulled away.  He stood there for a moment, dazed. Then everything came back into focus and he blinked, looking at her with a dopey grin. She took his hand.  "Let me get the food.  Then let's go."

*****

"Mizz Makayla?  Are you really a witch?"

"Neleesh!"

Makayla waved away Hector's concern and she smiled at the young boy.  She thought it a good sign that he was curious.  His grief would come and go, but at least he could still ask questions. 

1.5 #9.jpg

She leaned down close to him.  "I am, Neleesh.  I am a witch.  You aren't afraid of me, are you?"

He shook his head vigorously.  "No, course not!"

"Good boy. Magic isn't something to fear, only something to respect. After all, isn't the Queen here also a witch?  Do you fear her?"

He shook his head again.

"Good. Where's everyone else?"

"They're around. I think Akatsuki is in the kitchen, Maki's in her room and- oh, there's Maiah now."

1.5 #10.jpg

Makayla's afternoon at the Abbey was a pleasant interlude.  She was a distraction for the kids and gave the other adults a break. Marian looked a bit haggard and poor Hector was still trying to recuperate from near starvation. He was doing better, but it would take time.

When she left, all the children gave her a hug and even Randall gave her a light peck on the cheek.  "Do you want to go out sometime?" he asked, looking down at his feet.

She smiled.  "I'd like that very much. I still have my little project yet, but I'm very much looking forward to going out with you. We should take the kids out too, get them out and about. Will be good for them."

Randall nodded.  "Yes, I think you make a good point." He pulled her to him with a tight hug and gave her a quick kiss.

Makayla left the Abbey with a smile on her face and a spring to her step.

Offline Shewolf13

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Announcement for November
« Reply #25 on: October 21, 2018, 04:34:13 PM »
Announcement: Ok, again, apologies for the update and it being quite a bit shorter and not as focused as it should be. Now, November is coming up which means NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) which takes up my entire November. I will be attempting to write at least 50k words of a novel during this time as well as run events for my region so not a huge amount of time for Sims, though I will be getting Get Famous and I will test that out first before booting up my RKC.  Plus, there's the whole Python upgrade, so not sure how it will affect MCCC which is imperative for my RKC. Because of all those factors, this will be on hiatus until after November.  I may get some build interludes up, but I'm not sure.  Will all depend on time.

Don't worry, they will return! And I do apologize. I was hoping to get through one whole rotation before November, but unfortunately, my time was just a bit chaotic. Keep an eye on this space anyway because I will try to have some other things up at some point during November.

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC Story 1.5 10/21/18 and Announcement
« Reply #26 on: October 21, 2018, 05:18:16 PM »
Announcement: Ok, again, apologies for the update and it being quite a bit shorter and not as focused as it should be. Now, November is coming up which means NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) which takes up my entire November. I will be attempting to write at least 50k words of a novel during this time as well as run events for my region so not a huge amount of time for Sims, though I will be getting Get Famous and I will test that out first before booting up my RKC.  Plus, there's the whole Python upgrade, so not sure how it will affect MCCC which is imperative for my RKC. Because of all those factors, this will be on hiatus until after November.  I may get some build interludes up, but I'm not sure.  Will all depend on time.

Don't worry, they will return! And I do apologize. I was hoping to get through one whole rotation before November, but unfortunately, my time was just a bit chaotic. Keep an eye on this space anyway because I will try to have some other things up at some point during November.

Good luck with NaNoWriMo! I did that a couple of years ago. Won't be doing it this year, though, because of too much Sims stuff, lol. Your readers will wait for you.
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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC Story 1.5 10/21/18 and Announcement
« Reply #27 on: October 21, 2018, 07:08:23 PM »
Makayla and Randall are awfully cute together.
Good look with NaNoWriMo, both for yourself and for your region!

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC Story 1.5 10/21/18 and Announcement
« Reply #28 on: October 21, 2018, 08:44:58 PM »
Woah good luck with Nanowrimo Shewolf! Hope you enjoy doing it lol
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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC Story 1.5 10/21/18 and Announcement
« Reply #29 on: October 22, 2018, 10:53:08 AM »
Have fun writing!  I'll be all caught up by the time you get back and ready to more about your kingdom.   :D

Offline Shewolf13

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC Story 1.5 10/21/18 and Announcement
« Reply #30 on: December 08, 2018, 12:26:06 PM »
Good luck with NaNoWriMo! I did that a couple of years ago. Won't be doing it this year, though, because of too much Sims stuff, lol. Your readers will wait for you.

Thanks so much!  It went well-ish XD Lot of stuff going on, but I did hit the 50k.

Makayla and Randall are awfully cute together.
Good look with NaNoWriMo, both for yourself and for your region!

Aren't they?  I never had any intention of them getting together, but when I went in to play the Abbey, they were already at good friend level XD and it got me to thinking.  So I let them tell me what they wanted lol  And thanks.  Now that November is done, i can get back to my sims.

Woah good luck with Nanowrimo Shewolf! Hope you enjoy doing it lol

Thanks!  I do, mostly, though this year was a bit rough, but got through it.  Thanks for reading!

Have fun writing!  I'll be all caught up by the time you get back and ready to more about your kingdom.   :D

Thank you!  It was a bit of a slog at certain points (mostly just due to lack of focus this year), but I made it ^^ I should be getting back to it soon.

Stay tuned for an announcement and a call for some assistance ^^

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Progress Update and a Call for Assistance!
« Reply #31 on: December 08, 2018, 12:41:27 PM »
Progress Update

So, I made it through November and NaNo!  I aim to be getting back to sims.  Actually, I've been trying to deal with the bit of a curve ball that the update for Get Famous through me, namely that because of age settings, etc, everyone in the world aged up at the same time... which was not ideal, so had to go through and reset ages for those I didn't want to age up, etc.  Now, I'm just catching up with all the age ups, should be done with that soon.

Call for Assistance

Alright, now.  Because of the rules of the RKC, there isn't a lot of interaction for the readers, at least as far choosing heirs, etc.  I have two things in regards to that: the readers can't choose the heirs, but as we get closer, I will most likely hold a vote for choosing the heir's spouses, at least so far as there are choices at any given point.  But that's for later.

In a more immediate sense, I would like to put the call out for Sims!  My goal is to have ten families I am playing in this file. With Prima Dominus empty, I only have 9 families.  So, I thought I'd open it up to you, the readers.  If anyone has a sim they want to appear as a major player in the story, or who wants to make one, DM me a screenshot and any details you wish.  It can be one sim, two sims, a family, etc. I already have an idea for how they will become a noble, so if you want them to be a "merchant" or "peasant", that would be fantastic. If I get a plethora of them, I will put up the top three for a vote! Thanks for reading!


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1.6: Grief Never Really Fades
« Reply #32 on: December 23, 2018, 01:54:52 AM »
1.6: Grief Never Really Fades

Kaylyn stared blankly down at the page for a moment, lost in thoughts that didn't involve quadratic equations or what the author of Of Mice and Sims meant by a certain passage.  She sighed softly and shook her head, focusing back on the page of her math homework.

1.6 #1.jpg

She enjoyed school.  She could think about other things for a few hours a day before coming home and having to worry about things a teenager shouldn't have to.  She also had a project to work on for her science class, though she didn't have a lot of time for that.

1.6 #2.jpg

While working on it, she kept a close eye on her watch. She had to get to the restaurant.  Before heading out, she peeked into her parents- her father's bedroom.  The light was off, but she could hear the soft snoring sound he made when he'd been drinking.  She had to hold in another sigh.  At least he was sleeping it off now, rather than at the bar, mixing another drink for himself.

1.6 #3.jpg

She eased away, letting the door close softly so she didn't wake him.  She changed quickly and headed out.  The Ebony and Ivory Inn had been in the family for generations. 

1.6 #4.jpg

There had always been a Durant to run it. Her father had been working there since he had been a child.  He had met her mother there.  She'd been a waitress.  Though he had been the owner's son, their romance had been celebrated.  Their marriage hadn't changed her love for the place.  But her death had changed a lot for Chase, and for Kaylyn. It had been several years since Marina had passed from the illness that had ravaged her body, but the pain was still as fresh as if it had been yesterday.  For her father, especially.

Kaylyn couldn't help but remember her mother's laugh as she climbed the stairs toward the front door. That was the thing she could remember the most.  No matter what, her mother had always found something to laugh about.

"Miss Kaylyn!"

She turned and smiled at their chef.  Hajar El Majbouri had been their chef for a number of years.  "Haji!  Coming back in from break?"

"Yes ma'am."  The two walked in together.

1.6 #5.jpg

The night was already busy.  Their staff had been with them for years and had worked with her mother. They could run things on their own and had been doing so on and off for some time.  But Kaylyn thought it important that she or her father be there as often as possible. With him in this state, it was more often than not up to her.

She didn't mind. In fact, she loved interacting with their customers. Folks from all around came to the Ebony and Ivory to sample the food and the atmosphere, including some of the Elven nobles! Lord Elest had been there more than once, in fact.

1.6 #6.jpg

Kaylyn had had several chats with him.  He was the brother of Lord Alinar Firetamer, a powerful noble in Winding Willow.  And he had married the heir of another noble family, the Earthstalkers. For a noble, he was fairly approachable and she enjoyed it when his wife joined him. The two were very different.  He was suave and smooth.  Solana was adventurous, more down to earth than her husband.

1.6 #7.jpg

Watching them at their table made Kaylyn sigh dreamily. She knew that arranged marriages were often then norm for the nobility. For that matter, arranged marriages were still used in other families as well, even now. It was amazing to see the affection and love between Elest and Solana. Even though her mother's death had been so hard on her father, the thought of loving someone enough, of another loving her enough, to feel as if a part of you was missing was something that she desperately wanted.

Her reverie was interrupted by a new batch of customers. She straightened up and smiled at them.  It was time to get back to work!

*****

"Morning, sweetie."

Kaylyn looked at her father as he grabbed some leftovers for breakfast.  She was looking for signs that he had started drinking.  It looked like today may be a good day.  She could only hope it stayed that way.  She made sure she wore a smile.  "Morning, papa."

1.6 #8.jpg

"Ready for school?"

"Mhm."

"Are you ok, baby?  You seem tired."

Kaylyn started.  "Oh, I'm fine.  Was busy last night, that's all."

He looked down.  "Sorry, I should have been there.  You shouldn't have to be working on a school night."

"I don't mind, papa.  Really.  I love being at the inn."

"Still. I'll be there tonight, so you won't have to be there so late."

Her smile widened.  "That's great, papa!"  She looked at the time and stood up.  Her father stood up with her.  Impulsively, she threw her arms around his neck.  "I'll see you tonight!"

*****

The Ebony and Ivory was busy once again.  Customers milled at the hostess station, waiting for a seat.

1.6 #9.jpg

Kaylyn was so happy to see her father really engaging.  It had been a while since he had done that.  And he hadn't had a drink all day.  Were things changing for the better? 

Chase smiled at his daughter.  "Looks like you could use a break.  Go on. I'll keep on eye on things for a while."

She nodded and went to the upstairs apartment they kept on the second floor. She grabbed a bite to eat and splashed some water on her face.  She came back downstairs and then stopped in her tracks. Tears stung her eyes.  Her father was at the bar, mixing a drink.

1.6 #10.jpg

She waited a moment, hoping it was for a customer, though the drinks were usually prepared by the servers.  She bit her lip when she saw him walking around with the glass in his hand.  Holding in a cry, she watched him take a sip from it.  She ran back upstairs, sinking onto the couch.  With her head in her hand, all she could do was weep.

1.6 #11.jpg

*****

"Hey sweetie."  There was a cursory knock on the partially closed door of her bedroom as her father poked his head in.

Kaylyn made a noncommittal noise.  Chase took it for a greeting and opened the door.  He sat on the edge of her bed, his brow furrowed as he looked at her.

"Something wrong, Kay?"

She said nothing for a long moment as her lip curled.  "'Something wrong'? No, of course not. What could possibly be wrong?"

1.6 #12.jpg

Her father blinked.  "Sweetie?"

"I'm only watching my father drink himself to death!" she shouted as she stood up, tears glittering in her eyes.  She ran out of her room, leaving her father sitting on the edge of her bed, stunned.

*****

Chase stayed at home all day, brooding.  He kept looking at the bar, desperate for a drink. But his daughter's words kept echoing back at him. He was waiting for Kaylyn to get home.  After her outburst, she'd avoided him entirely and had snuck out to go to school.

He'd stayed out on the back patio, thinking deeply. The sound of the door opening and closing drew his attention.  He didn't go into the house, unsure what he'd say.

It didn't take long for Kaylyn to come out to the backyard.  She said nothing to her father, simply sitting on the sofa next to him and pulling out her homework. Chase could only look down at the ground.

1.6 #13.jpg

There was tense silence for a long moment before Chase stood up, clearing his throat.  He stood in front of his daughter as she kept working on her homework.

1.6 #14.jpg

"Kaylyn, there-there's nothing I can say, no apologie I can make.  I thought a lot about what you said. I've been drinking too much.  Which is bad enough.  But I realized that, worse than the drinking, I've put far too much on your shoulders.  You're in high school.  You should be having fun, going out with friends, driving the boys crazy.  I-I can't promise that things will go perfectly from now on.  But- I want to try.  I want you to enjoy being a kid again.  And I want to be a good father to you."

She looked up from the pages of her book, her face streaked with silent tears as they fell down her cheeks.  "Daddy," she whispered, jumping up.  He pulled her to him in a crushing embrace.  She clung on and his guilt sky-rocketed.

"I'm sorry, baby.  I-I'm going to try, for you."

*****

"Good evening!  I hope you're enjoying your meal."  Chase smiled down at the two people sitting at the table.  Kaylyn was helping clean up but she'd been watching her father.  She'd been watching him for days, in fact, since he'd promised to stop drinking.  So far, he had.  A part of her was afraid to hope.  After all, there were some days, even weeks where he hadn't touched a drink. But so far, he was keeping his promise.

1.6 #15.jpg

She had to smile.  He was so good with the customers.  He always had been.  He did truly care a great deal about the Ebony and Ivory.  After her mother's death, he had lost some of the joy from it.  Maybe it was starting to come back.  She could only hope so.  Maybe it and she would be enough to help bring it back.  Only time would tell.

*****

Author's note: Due to the new patches and what not for Get Famous, there were a lot of aging up, a lot of deaths due to aging up, some marriages and some births.  Due to the sheer number, it would take forever to do my little newspaper articles.  So if anyone is curious about it all, check out The Other Kingdoms.  If you're interested in more details and the family trees, there is also the blog which has all that stuff as well.

Offline Shewolf13

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC story NEW! 1.6 12/23/18
« Reply #33 on: January 30, 2019, 11:57:06 AM »
Update:

Hey guys, just a heads up.  I haven't forgotten this.  But I am in a bit of a slump.  One of the things I love about Carls is the interaction with readers and I know things have been quiet, so I'm struggling a bit.  I'll get over it.  But just wanted to let you know that I haven't forgotten.  I did start playing with the Rosas, since they are the next up.  We'll see how it goes.  Story-wise, hope everyone is still enjoying things.

Offline BallerinaHippo

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC story Update 1/30/19
« Reply #34 on: February 23, 2019, 05:41:10 PM »
Just popping in to say hello, and I hope everything is going well with the Rosas (and all your other families).  Sorry you got hit with the aging bug when Get Famous came out.  That must have really wreaked havoc in your game.

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC story Update 1/30/19
« Reply #35 on: August 26, 2019, 02:58:56 PM »
Welcome back Shewolf13

Offline Shewolf13

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC story Update 1/30/19
« Reply #36 on: August 26, 2019, 04:30:58 PM »
@sdhoey

Thanks! I've been around a bit, but mostly have only had time to lurk. Hoping to come back more steady now, if not a lot, at least more consistently.

Offline Shewolf13

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Mini Update!
« Reply #37 on: September 04, 2019, 03:15:00 PM »
So, I have been hard at work (amidst some more chaos in my life) getting my game updated and trying to get things squared away. Since the last time I played my RKC, we've had two new worlds appear, and now we're going to have "two" more. One of the things I did was create a map of how things fit together. I tried using Gimp and other means, but I am no illustrator/graphic designer, so I ended up using inkarnate.com to put one together. Hopefully, you get the gist of what I was trying to do XD

Simdom.jpg

I also have new shots of each world. I've downloaded some new builds for them all.

Bay of a Thousand Waves (Brindleton Bay)

Bay of a Thousand Waves.jpg

Del Sol Valley

Del Sol Valley.jpg

Forgotten Hollow

Forgotten Hollow.jpg

Granite Falls

Granite Falls.jpg

Magnolia Promenade

Magnolia Promenade.jpg

Newcrest

Newcrest.jpg

Oasis Springs

Oasis Springs.jpg

San Myshuno

San Myshuno.jpg

Selvadorada

Selvadorado.jpg

StrangerVille

StrangerVille.jpg

Sulani

Sulani.jpg

Windenburg

Windenburg.jpg

Winding Willow (Willow Creek)

Winding Willow.jpg

That being said, because one of the updates made it so all aliens appear in the map screens as their disguised selves (which I don't have in this play file), I have to find a new way to do the quick snapshots of the alien families at least. And that's proving more problematic, so I might redo the Other Kingdoms post (if anyone has any suggestions, I'm all ears!). I have stuff to add there anyway with the new worlds and all that.

I hope to finish up the Rosas' week shortly and get an update up before I leave for Colorado on the 10th. Time is a bit precious at the moment, since I am going to be working straight through to make up for the hours I will not be here.

Sorry this update isn't bigger

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC story- World Mini Update 9/4/19
« Reply #38 on: September 04, 2019, 03:33:10 PM »
What an amazingly complex and gorgeous world map!
I also enjoyed the glimpse at each of your RKC neighborhoods to see their current state of "medievaelization." Yes, I realize that's not a word, but you know what I mean....
The building process and world set-up seem utterly time-consuming, Wolfie.
You must enjoy those aspects of an RKC as much as you like playing your sims within your world-building. <3

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC story- World Mini Update 9/4/19
« Reply #39 on: September 04, 2019, 03:53:58 PM »
Those are some amazing worlds. Oh. My. Hat. Hey, I just plop down some Maxis made lots and call it done. That ship in Sulani?! Your map is beautiful. It's all exceptional.

I worry that you habitually apologize for stuff that's not worth feeling pressured about. :) Write the Rosas' week, sure, but not if it feels like a chore.
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It is a little thing of my own. I call it "Heart Foam". I shall not publish it. Farewell! Patience, Patience, farewell!

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Offline Shewolf13

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC story- World Mini Update 9/4/19
« Reply #40 on: September 04, 2019, 09:17:49 PM »
What an amazingly complex and gorgeous world map!
I also enjoyed the glimpse at each of your RKC neighborhoods to see their current state of "medievaelization." Yes, I realize that's not a word, but you know what I mean....
The building process and world set-up seem utterly time-consuming, Wolfie.
You must enjoy those aspects of an RKC as much as you like playing your sims within your world-building. <3

@oshizu
 
Thank you ^^ Inkarnate.com is amazing and has a lot of great tools that make things pretty easy. Considering the fact that I can't use photo editing or illustrating software, it's great for someone like me. That can totally be a word now lol

I do enjoy the set up. I find I have an easier time with playing and with the story if the background stuff is in place. It also helps keep some inconsistencies from popping up... or should XD That's the fiction writer in me, I think. And honestly, when I write my novels, I do a ton of world-building and other planning before I ever start writing.

Those are some amazing worlds. Oh. My. Hat. Hey, I just plop down some Maxis made lots and call it done. That ship in Sulani?! Your map is beautiful. It's all exceptional.

I worry that you habitually apologize for stuff that's not worth feeling pressured about. :) Write the Rosas' week, sure, but not if it feels like a chore.

@Heart Foam

Thank you so much! And yeah, I do have a habit of apologizing XD I think it comes from the fact that I have a habit of abandoning Sims' stories. I love playing the Sims, but I do go in cycles and when it comes to writing stories for them, I feel guilty for doing that. I am looking forward to playing the Rosas and writing their part, I just also like to have things lined up first, if that makes sense.

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC story- World Mini Update 9/4/19
« Reply #41 on: September 09, 2019, 03:58:53 PM »
Wow, this is so detailed and involved. I haven't read everything yet, but I can tell that you've invested a lot of time into this project. Maybe I've missed something, but I'm a little confused. It seems like you started with three families to determine who would be royalty and then this story picks up from there? I ask because it seems like these families start off "in progress. I'm sorry if I'm being dense!

The other thing I am wondering about is the era. Some families seem more Medieval, while others have a more modern look. Is this difference in look somehow indicative of their class?

If there is a place where you've already explained these things, please feel free to point me in that direction rather than typing out a long response here. I'll bet you are excited for Realm of Magic!

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC story- World Mini Update 9/4/19
« Reply #42 on: September 16, 2019, 01:32:14 AM »
Wow, this is so detailed and involved. I haven't read everything yet, but I can tell that you've invested a lot of time into this project. Maybe I've missed something, but I'm a little confused. It seems like you started with three families to determine who would be royalty and then this story picks up from there? I ask because it seems like these families start off "in progress. I'm sorry if I'm being dense!

The other thing I am wondering about is the era. Some families seem more Medieval, while others have a more modern look. Is this difference in look somehow indicative of their class?

If there is a place where you've already explained these things, please feel free to point me in that direction rather than typing out a long response here. I'll bet you are excited for Realm of Magic!

@reggikko

I'm slightly insane XD For some reason, the big projects with lots of planning really get me going. The more paperwork, the better. And yes, that is exactly correct. The first part (the One to Rule Them All Challenge story To Prevent a Way can be found here.

As to era, it's more a fantasy-esque setting rather than straight medieval. I'm a fantasy nut hehehe and thought it would be fun to explain the presence of more modern things, as well as science alongside things like magic.

And boy, am I ever excited for RoM! hahahaha, been waiting ages. Won't get a chance to play with it until after the 22nd, though, sadly.

Anyway, if you have any more questions, just PM me or ask them here ^^

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Chapter 1.7: Give and Take
« Reply #43 on: September 26, 2019, 11:07:17 PM »
Chapter 1.7: Give and Take

Last Episode:

When last we saw the Rosas, Adrian admitted to all the nobles of the kingdom that he knew he was the son of Marcus Bulwark. Since Blakely Doran won the contest, he pledged himself to his new King, swearing himself and his family to serve them faithfully. He feels he can best serve the kingdom in the role he is in, as a diplomat.

The family lives in Rosa Manor, located on Optimist's Outlook in Newcrest. The household consists of:

  • Lady Ferina Rosa- the matriarch of the family; she was to wed the heir to the throne, but her brother was furious and challenged the prince to a duel. Both he and the Prince were killed. She didn't realize she was pregnant until later. She kept her son's parentage a secret after marrying a family friend.
  • Lord Adrian Rosa- the head of the family, and an important man in the kingdom. He is a diplomat and serves as the face of the kingdom. He is happy to serve Newcrest and its new King and Queen.
  • Lady Marisa Rosa- Adrian's wife; she is the sister of Lord Donovan Xavier of Windenburg.
  • Lady Jayda Rosa- Adrian and Marisa's first born and heir. She's a toddler with the Angelic trait.
  • Lord Quinn Rosa- Adrian and Marisa's second born child. He is a baby.
  • Daichi Tanaka- the family's butler, he has served them for years. He is also Lady Ferina's lover. The two formed a relationship that took some time to come to light. The family supports them wholeheartedly.

*****

Adrian nodded Meredith as she smiled at him, motioning him into the castle entrance. "M'lord, the King will be right with you. Why don't you go make yourself comfortable in the library?"

"Thank you, Meredith. I will." Adrian's expression was thoughtful. Times were always changing. Who knew that better than he? It seemed every time he turned around, something else was different. It wasn't a bad thing, for the most part, really. Change often meant growth. Still, it wasn't always comfortable. He settled himself into one of the armchairs in the library, lost in his reverie.

After all, hadn't he just watched his mother get married again? He fully supported her relationship with Daichi. He was a good man and he adored Ferina, that wasn't in any doubt. Still, her marriage to a butler would certainly draw attention and it was what had taken Daichi so long to propose. He hadn't had any intention of doing so, in fact. Except Adrian- and even more so Marisa- had told him to do it. Life was too short to hesitate and Ferina wasn't a young woman anymore. So Daichi had finally asked her and the two had a private ceremony, only themselves with Adrian and Marisa as witnesses.

Adrian smiled softly to himself. He had never seen his mother look so radiant.

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It was good to see her happy. Daichi treated her like a queen. She deserved to be happy. She had put her own needs last for far too long, to his way of thinking.

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"Lord Rosa- Adrian!"

Adrian was brought out of his thoughts abruptly; he started and then grinned ruefully at his King. He began to rise, but Blakely waved it off. "Please, not necessary. Stay seated. Thank you for coming." The King took the chair opposite Adrian and sat on the edge of the seat.  "Thank you for meeting me today. I know it's been rather busy for you. Was just your boy's birthday, wasn't it?"

Adrian nodded. "Yes, your highness. Quinn's getting big already. Hard to believe."

"Aye. Time flies, doesn't it?"

"Yes, yes it does. Seems like just yesterday he was born. Now he's toddling along by himself!"

Blakely laughed. "How are he and Jayda getting along?"

Adrian's grin was wide as he pulled out a picture. "Oh, they like to get themselves into trouble a bit, but I'm a lucky man. Look at these two." He held out the photograph to Blakely, every inch the proud papa. The evidence of how close his children were was in the photo.

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"You are indeed a lucky man. Those two are going to be heartbreakers soon enough, aren't they?"

Adrian grimaced. "I'm trying not to think about that. They are already growing up too fast. It'll be Jayda's birthday soon enough."

Blakely laughed. "Aye, I know that feeling. Zach's getting up there too and Rhys will be running around before I know it." He shook his head. "Anyway, apologies. I know you must want to get back home."

The two men settled in. Adrian crossed his ankles and waited for his King to speak once more.

Blakely sat with his elbows restig on the arms of the chair and steepled his hands in front of his face. "As you know, both Strangerville and Sulani have opened their borders. There have even been some overtures, the possibility of treaties and trade agreements."

"Yes, I had heard about this. Beatrice was gathering more information, the last I knew."

"Aye. Based on her information, I will be meeting with the Chief of Sulani in a month's time. However, she is concerned about Strangerville. There are rumors and stories about strange things happening. She is still collecting data, but what she's found so far is concerning."

Adrian frowned, thinking. "What has she found?"

"There are rumors of some kind of an illness taking hold. What kind of illness, no one seems to know. There haven't been any casualties reported that we've been able to dig up."

"Still, that is concerning." Adrian gestured with his hands. "I take it you'd like me to visit there?"

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"Yes. While the rumors of this illness are concerning, I can't, in good conscience, ignore a kingdom that may need our help. I would feel better sending someone in to take stock. If you see anything that concerns you, please, report it immediately. If there is anything that we can do to help, see if you can find that out as well."

"Of course, sire. I will send a missive to them tonight and work out travel details."

"I knew I could count on you, Adrian. Thank you."

The two men stood and shook hands. "I'm happy to do my duty. I will do what I can to assess the situation in Strangerville and then get back to you."

Adrian was escorted out of the castle by Meredith. He was quiet on the way home. It wasn't until he strode through the door of Rosa Manor that he relaxed, smiling softly. There was nothing like coming home.

"Da!" Adrian looked down the hallway and saw Quinn. His son grinned up at him, his big bright eyes sparkling. "Hey, there's my boy!"

"Papa, fly! Papa, fly!"

"You wanna fly, huh? Like a bird?"

"Bir', bir'!"

Adrian laughed as he hefted his boy up onto his hip and carried him down the hall to the ballroom where there was more room. Quinn often got a bit over-enthusiastic.

The laughter of his son rang out around them as he hoisted Quinn up into the air, calling for more and more.

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The sounds of her son and husband brought Marisa into the ballroom. Adrian's smile widened as he was greeted by his wife with a kiss on the cheek.

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"Your meeting went well?" she asked him, holding his hands in hers.

"Yes. It's as we suspected. The King would like me to pay a visit to Strangerville. He and the Queen will be meeting with those in Sulani. He wants me to see what I can find out about the rumors we keep hearing of Strangerville."

"I'm glad he trusts you with something so important. When do you leave?"

"As soon as I get a reply. I've sent a messenger to the Roswells. From what I understand, they are the oldest family there. "

Her hand rubbed up and down his arm. "It sounds like your best bet. You'll be careful." 

It wasn't a question; he still answered. "Of course. I'm only going to find out some information."

"Mm, see that's all you do." The two held hands as they walked down the hall. Adrian leaned close to whisper in his wife's ear. Whatever he said made her giggle and eyes light up.

****

"Gamma, story!"

Ferina beamed down at her granddaughter. "What story would you like to hear tonight, my little one?"

"Da princess in the tower!"

"Ah, the Trapped Princess it is, then, my sweet." Ferina opened the cute picture book about the Princess who lived in a tower. There was a Prince in there as well, though he was a bit late to save the Princess as she was done with waiting and saved herself! Jayda loved that story.

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As she read, Ferina watched as Jayda's eyes grew heavy. But before she could close the book, Jayda was looking up at her grandmother with a serious expression. "Gamma?"

"Yes, sweetie?"

"Is papa there yet?"

Ferina pursed her lips, her gaze traveling upward for a moment. "I imagine he is, sweetie. It doesn't take long to travel. He'll be back before you know it."

Jayda nodded seriously. "Ok, Gamma." She settled back and then cuddled down into her covers, closing her eyes. She was asleep in moments.

Ferina sighed quietly. To be young again. Her thoughts traveled to her son, who should have arrived in Strangerville a few hours ago.

****

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Adrian stepped out of the car, shielding his eyes from the sun. He wasn't sure what he had expected, but it wasn't what he was seeing. There was a certain charm about the desert landscape, he had to admit. Still, something in the air seemed- off. Perhaps it was only his imagination, getting the better of him.

He leaned in and tipped his driver before he sauntered into what appeared to be the center of town. Hm, the reply from the Roswell's had said they would have someone meet him here. But he didn't see anyone.

"Lord Rosa?" He turned around at the voice. A young woman in a uniform stood behind him.

He extended a hand toward her. "Yes, I'm Lord Rosa."

"Colonel Aberwith. Ted Roswell told me to meet you today. We're glad to have you." Her grip was a strong one. "If you need anything, all you have to do is ask."

"Thank you. I had my bags taken to where I will be staying."

"Good, good. I think you'll find the accomodations more than adequate."

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"I'm sure they'll do nicely." He smiled disarmingly. "I was hoping to meet with Mr. Roswell soon, if possible."

"I will see if that can be arranged. He's often a busy man."

"Of course, of course." As he stood there with a smile plastered on his face, Adrian's alarm bells were ringing. Though the Colonel seemed sincere, her body language was tense and she rarely met his gaze. He was about to chalk it up to simply being unused to visitors when he caught a glimpse of the person behind that was walking jerkily behind the Colonel.

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*****

"Alright, alright. Adrian?" King Blakely looked around at the gathering of people in the great hall of the castle. His gaze rested on Adrian. "You called this emergency meeting as soon as you got back from Strangerville. Share your findings here, with everyone."

Adrian stood up to address his fellow aristocrats. He pulled in a deep breath. "As you know, I went to Strangerville to see if I could glean any information about the rumors we kept hearing. We're no strangers to illnesses here and the King sent me to see if we could be of assistance in any way or at least substantiate any of the information we had."

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He paused, picking his words carefully. "I have already told the King what I have found, but I wanted everyone to know." He began to lay some photographs down. "I was only there for three days, but it is my opinion that they are hiding something. Something serious." The first photo was of the woman he had first seen in the town center. There was a gasp from Lady Beatrice even as her husband picked up the photograph, frowning.

"Were you able to ascertain what the cause of- this is? Or even- what is this?" Gunner asked.

"The representative I spoke with was extremely close-mouthed about everything. Even asking direct questions got little in the way of answers. Then there were the outright lies." Adrian shook his head in disgust.

Beatrice was holding another photograph. "Adrian? What can you tell me about this?"

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"Not as much as I would like to," Adrian answered. "I do know when I asked about these plants- they were scattered about town- the Colonel became very defensive. I was lucky to get this picture." He shook his head and held up his hands. "Something is wrong in that town. I can't explain what it is, can't give you the kind of information we were hoping to get. What's more, they either won't admit anything is wrong or don't think anything is wrong."

As the discussion continued, King Darian sat back, thinking. Strangerville's borders had been closed for all of his reign and for a good portion of his father's as well. He had always thought it was because they were simply an insular people. But now, he wasn't so sure.

A while later, Blakely stood up and addressed his nobles and his Queen. "Based on these findings and on their apparent lack of forthcoming, I have no choice. The borders between Newcrest and Strangerville will remain closed. Further, there is to be a quarantine for any that travel to or from there. We still can't know just what it is that is happening there. The weather changing has been difficult enough and our citizens are still reeling from that. I will not turn away those that may need help, but neither will I expose our citizens to anymore danger than I have to."

No one argued. Adrian sat back. It was no less than he had expected. There was little choice when those in Strangerville refused to cooperate. For now, it was all they could do.

****

"Thank you, Daichi. I'll take care of that. Almost done with the cake." Marisa continued to mix up the batter she had in the bowl as Daichi checked the dish in the oven.

"Of course, m'lady. Hard to believe it's Jayda's birthday already."

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"Tell me about it! Can't believe my baby will be going to school soon. Doesn't seem possible." She wiped the back of her flour-covered hand over her forehead. "Then again, my brother's kids are going into high school and his youngest is in middle school." She glanced up at the clock. "And they'll start arriving any minute now!"

Before too long, the front doors opened to admit friends and family. Quinn found his older cousin River quite fascinating and kept following him around, babbling excitedly.

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Their star of the hour wasn't sure what to think of her cousin Eva. Though she enjoyed the attention everyone was giving her.

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Then it was time for cake. Adrian had the honor of holding her up to the candles. She blew them out so quick, it had been impossible to get a picture of her doing it!

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She refused to pose for pictures until she was properly outfitted and attired to her own satisfaction.

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She certainly favors her father in coloring, except for her eyes. She inherited her mother's eye color. Her brother, on the other hand, inherited most of his coloring and looks from his mother.

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****

Darian looked down at the picture that Adrian showed him. "Can't believe how big she's gotten. Or your littlest, Adrian. They are beautiful children."

Adrian and his uncle were at the Ebony and Ivory Inn, having a meal.

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"Thank you. I think so too." Adrian's eyes sparkled.

"I'm sorry I missed her party."

"Think nothing of it. We understand. How are you feeling?"

"Better. Much better. Since you came back with your report, Blakely and I have spent a lot of time in meetings. He's doing well, but he requests my council when I can give it."

"As he should." Adrian paused as the waiter came with their food. He took a sip of his wine, nodding approval. "Your experience would be invaluable to him. To all of us, uncle."

Darian shrugged. "I won't be here forever, my boy." One corner of the old King's mouth turned up into a self-deprecating grin. "But I'm happy to give my council." He raised his glass. "I am proud of you, all of you. The way each of you has stepped up lets me know that when the Matriarch calls me to her, I can go knowing that Newcrest will be well taken care of."

Adrian was silent for a long moment, swirling his wine in the glass. "I was going to say bite your tongue. But I'm old enough to know that everyone's time will come. Still, I hope that it will be a long time before we have to worry about governing without your Council, uncle."

Darian laughed. "Hear hear!" He took a sip of his own wine.

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"How's your mother? I was happy to hear about her marriage."

Adrian smiled. "She and Daichi are very happy together." His smile faded. "I hope you weren't offended because you weren't invited to the wedding. Mother told me that she just wanted me and Marisa there."

"Oh no, of course not. I understand." He looked off to the side, his gaze distant. "I can't imagine it has been easy for her. I wish she had been able to confide in me all those years ago."

"Uncle," Adrian's voice was soft, "I think my mother didn't want to add to your burden. I know she felt for you when your Amelia died."

"I know I was mired in grief. But I would have helped her."

"She knows that. Uncle, you have nothing to be sorry for. She did what she thought she had to. That's all any of us can do."

"Ha!" Darian winked at his nephew. "When did you get so wise?"

"I wouldn't call it wise," Adrian returned with a wicked grin, "just an observation."

The two laughed as they finished up their meal. "Tell your mother, and that lovely wife of yours that we'll all have to get together again. I very much enjoyed the last time I came over."

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"Of course. You'll have to come for dinner again one of these nights. Perhaps once things settle down a little."

"I'd like that." The two men stood from their table and walked out of the Inn. They said their good byes and then went their separate ways.

Adrian had decided to walk to the inn. It was close to the Manor and it was a nice night. By the time he and his uncle had concluded their dinner, it was dark out. That was ok. The air held a chill to it, but it wasn't too bad yet. The weather had been fairly mild, at least so far. He knew it wouldn't last forever, though.

By the time that he walked through the front door of the manor, it was fairly late. As he proceeded to head toward the stairs, he heard soft voices coming from the front parlor. He looked in briefly and saw his mother and Daichi on the sofa. "That feels wonderful, Ichi, thank you."

"Always, my dear."

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Adrian smiled softly as he wandered up the steps to change. He looked in on his sleeping children and found his wife already in bed as well. Not quite ready for sleep yet and remembering his conversation with his uncle, he padded back downstairs to the kitchen.

He grabbed a cup of green tea and stood there in the kitchen, contemplating life for a moment. If anyone had predicted any of this when he had first been told of the contest for the throne, he would have thought they were crazy. It was strange the turns that life so often took.

"Thinking deep thoughts, son?"

He looked up at his mother as she came into the kitchen, smiling softly.

"I suppose so. Just thinking about life. It's been pretty good to me. And I have you to thank for that, mother."

"Oh Adrian. I'm your mother. It's my job. I'm just glad that things worked out."

"Me too."

The two stood in companionable silence for a moment. "Did you enjoy dinner with your uncle?"

"I did." He reached up into the cupboard to grab a glass for some water.  "I told him we had to have him over for dinner soon."

"That's a splendid idea. We should have a party. What do you think?"

He had to grin. His mother loved her parties. "I think that would be a great idea, mother. Marisa would enjoy cooking for everyone, I think. What should she serve?"

When there was no answer, he turned and looked over his shoulder at her. "Mother?"

Ferina swayed on her feet, all the color drained from her face. "A-adrian," she whispered as she pitched forward onto the floor.

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"Mother?  MOTHER!"

****

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Watcher's Note: And thus, our first loss in our families. It was a tough one for me. Especially since it was the last thing that happened on Adrian's week. I will have a little memorial photo in the Memorium section.

Offline oshizu

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC story- Chap. 1.7 9/26/19
« Reply #44 on: September 28, 2019, 01:34:04 AM »
The children are very beautiful. Jayda indeed resembles her father a lot.
As happy as I felt about Adrian's wedding, I feel so bad about Lady Ferina.

She waits so long to find her own happiness, only to pass away soon after finally going public about her relationship with Daichi.
Please tell me they had been enjoying a secret affair since Adrian's youth! Hah!

Oh, Adrian and Strangerville! I'd guessed Blakely would go there because of his military background.
Now that he's king, though, I guess he can't run off to fight every dragon anymore....

It's good to be reading your story again! :)

Offline Shewolf13

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Re: Lasting Legacies: an RKC story- Chap. 1.7 9/26/19
« Reply #45 on: October 16, 2019, 12:07:00 AM »
The children are very beautiful. Jayda indeed resembles her father a lot.
As happy as I felt about Adrian's wedding, I feel so bad about Lady Ferina.

She waits so long to find her own happiness, only to pass away soon after finally going public about her relationship with Daichi.
Please tell me they had been enjoying a secret affair since Adrian's youth! Hah!

Oh, Adrian and Strangerville! I'd guessed Blakely would go there because of his military background.
Now that he's king, though, I guess he can't run off to fight every dragon anymore....

It's good to be reading your story again! :)

@oshizu

I can't wait to see what Jayda looks like when she's a teen. She's already gorgeous and her brother is such a cutie!

I know! I was so sad. See, I don't have the same ability to keep track of days and all that like you do (when I get to playing, I just lose all track XD), so I end up rolling the elder age (because of how I have MCCC set up as far as aging for the rest of the world) and then I set it and sort of forget it. Well, I knew it would be soon, ya know? But was hoping I'd get another week or at least it wouldn't happen until their next week. Sadly, it happened just before it was time to switch, so I couldn't even switch until afterwards. Adrian even tried to plead but it failed :(

lol Sure, I could see that. Though Daichi is a proper butler (and also quite handsome; did you see his makeover?) I could see them having at least a flirtation for many years.

Yeah, Blakely can't go galavanting off like he used to now that he's King. He delegates, even when it chafes a bit. But he knows which of his people to send.

Glad you are enjoying it. I'm happy to be back with it. I've got some plans in the works, plans I hope the readers will enjoy, though the plans won't come to fruition for a little while yet.

Anyway, next update coming up!

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Chapter 1.8: Living Off the Land
« Reply #46 on: October 16, 2019, 12:14:44 AM »
Chapter 1.8: Living Off the Land

Brynlee Hansome breathed in the morning air, the ripe scent of turned earth a heady aroma to her. She smiled sweetly as she knelt down, digging her hands into the soil. There was nothing like planting and coaxing the land to bring forth its bounty.

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She also quite enjoyed this time in the morning, just as the sun was beginning its rise over the horizon. There was a sense of peace and quiet. All was right in the world at that very moment. After watering each of the freshly planted mounds, she stood up and surveyed her work. With a nod of satisfaction, she turned to head back into the house. She imagined her father and husband would be up soon.

She eased open the back door, used to moving quietly. She enjoyed the time just before the sun came up so she could see to the garden. Oh, her father and husband always helped out, too, but she had come to think of it as her time. That and she enjoyed making food for everyone.

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As she set the platter down, the bedroom door opened. "Morning, my treasure." Her husband wrapped his arms around her waist from behind and kissed her cheek.

She leaned back against him. "Morning."

He looked at the plate. "You made breakfast again, huh?"

"Mhm. Dig in. Dad will likely be up and around soon, too."

Enzo nodded as he sat down. Brynlee joined him.

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"How was dad feeling last night?" she asked, looking down at the table.

Enzo rubbed a hand on the back of his neck. "He seems ok, but you know how he is. I'm trying to make sure he doesn't over-do."

"I know, I know. He just- I worry about his pride. He never tells us when something is wrong." She'd stopped eating, her hands resting on the table.

Enzo lay his hand over hers. "That's why we keep an eye on him." He gave her hand a squeeze.

She brought her gaze up to his, one corner of her mouth going up into a grin. "Yeah. Not that he'd thank us for it. But I will thank you. You're good with him. You know how to talk to him. Every time I tell him something, he gets that stubborn look on his face."

"You are his little girl, Bryn," Enzo pointed out. "He loves you and he doesn't want to feel useless."

"Oh I know that! And he could never be useless!  Never!"

"It's a lot easier to say than to believe." Enzo's voice was soft.

Brynlee's breath caught as she forced tears back. "I know. I just- I can't lose him too, Enzo. I-I know it'll happen, but I'm not ready. And after that scare not long ago-"

He rubbed his thumb over the back of her hand. "Oh baby, we'll never be ready. We just have to do what we can to make sure he doesn't over-do it again."

"You're right. I know you are. Thank you, Enzo."

They leaned toward one another to kiss lightly.  As they did, the door behind them opened and Drew walked out, his left leg stiff and dragging behind him slightly. "Morning, dad."

"Morning sir." Enzo vacated his seat so Drew could take it.

The older man grunted as he sat down. He was never quite coherent in the morning. Still, he smiled at his daughter as she set a plate in front of him and Enzo took the other seat.

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"You two done talkin' about me?" Drew asked after a couple mouthfuls.

"Dad-"

"Oh hush, girl. I know you two." Drew shifted in his chair, rubbing at his leg. "There's gotta be better things fer two young'uns to talk about than an old man like me." His serious expression gave way to a craggy smile. "Like grandchildren. I'm not gettin' any younger ya know!"

"Dad!" Brynlee's scolding was spoiled by the fact that she couldn't contain a laugh.

Enzo winked at his wife. "We keep trying, sir. Practice makes perfect."

Drew threw his head back. "Good lad!" He visibly braced himself as he stood up, the movement stiff from his bad leg. But once he was up, he stood tall. "Why don't I see what I can fish us up for supper tonight, huh?"

"That's a great idea, dad! I can make some fried fish."

Enzo cleared off the table as Drew and Brynlee discussed the best way to prepare fish. Then he and Brynlee watched Drew head out of the house. Enzo knew it was hard for Brynlee to see as Drew sometimes struggled to walk. He had to lead her away to keep her from watching him go all the way to the pond. He understood her worry, but they had to give Drew space. Plus, Enzo could always keep a half an eye on him since the pond was only a bit across the road.

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Water sloshed in the metal tub as Brynlee drug the wet clothes over the washboard. Her back ached a bit today and she reached up to brush the back of her soapy hand over her forehead.

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The weather was beginning to heat up. Though the announcements had gone out ages ago, it was still hard to fathom the changing of seasons. Luckily, their good King had given them the means to build a shelter to keep their plants protected as much as possible. Still, this was the first time they were really beginning to feel it.

With a sigh, she stood up, giving herself a shake. Chores were proving to be just that today. Still, it had to be done. She reached into the washtub and grabbed the wet clothes so she could hang them on the line.

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"I said I'd do that, love."

Her head swiveled to the side as Enzo came out the back door. "I beat you to it," she told him, dredging up a smile.

Instead of returning it, he frowned. "Come inside, baby." He waited for her to go in first and was close behind her. Then he took her hand and turned her gently around to face him.

He put his hand to her cheek. "Oh sweetie, you're burning up!"

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Her mouth pulled into a grimace. "It's true I haven't been feeling well."

"Bed. Now."

Brynlee furrowed her brow. "Enzo-"

"No. Bed." There was no give in his voice. "Bryn, you have a habit of looking after everyone else except for yourself. That's my job now. So- bed!"

Feeling a sulk coming on, Brynlee put her nose up in the air. "Fine then. I'll just lay down for a little while. Should be right as rain afterward."

"We'll see."

He kept a sharp eye on his wife as she went into their room, closing the door harder than necessary. He grinned to himself. She would be a little cross with him for a while, but as long as she slept, he'd take it. She could never stay mad for too long, anyway.

He went back outside to see to the rest of the laundry.

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He moved onto the fields, checking on their progress. It was mostly his wife's domain, but he helped out where he could. He didn't have her touch with plants, it was true. But he could at least water or weed.

He finished up outside and went back in, making sure to be as quiet as possible. He found his father-in-law sitting at the little card table. "Care for a couple hands?" Drew asked.

"Sure, why not." Enzo took a seat as Drew dealt out some cards.

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"Where's me girl?"

"I had her lay down. She's feeling a bit under the weather."

Drew frowned, then nodded sharply. "Good. Girl's too stubborn by half. Glad to see she listens to you."

Enzo's mouth drew up into a smirk and he arched a brow at his father-in-law. "Gee, wouldn't be because she takes after her father, now, would it?"

Drew stopped, glaring at Enzo. But it quickly turned into a chuckle. "Aye, mayhap, she does at that. Though her mother was much the same. Ophelia was the sweetest woman I ever knew, but when she dug her heels in, there was no budging her."

"It's why we love them." Enzo was cautious. It was rare for Drew to mention Brynlee's mother. He knew Ophelia had succombed to a fever years ago. It was still painful for those that had loved and lost her.

"Aye. Well, at least she's layin' down. Got any threes?"

"Go fish!"

Drew grumbled under his breath. The two men continued their game, muted laughter and a few creative curses punctuating the fun.



Drew sucked in a breath, feeling that too familiar tightness in his chest. It happened too much of late. Even something as simple as hanging the laundry on the line winded him!

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He finished, pulling in another deep breath, though it resulted in a hacking cough. He had to look around quickly. If Brynlee heard him, he knew he was in for it. His little girl had a way of looking at him, her big eyes full of worry, that never failed to make him feel guilty. It was worse now. She had been reluctant to let him even do this much. But she hadn't had a choice. He had to smile at that. He was old and he knew the Matriarch would come calling before long. At least he'd get to meet his grandchild before then.

Brynlee had been feeling poorly for days. But it had finally dawned on her why. She'd been so excited to tell him. The joy on her face had been something to see. He had to admit that it had brought out a smile on his own face, too.

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Of course, she had told Enzo first. The lad had been beside himself with joy.

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Every time he saw the two of them together, Drew swore he found Enzo making baby talk to Brynlee's belly.

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"Hewwo lil one. Are you bein' good to yer mama?"

It always made Brynlee laugh. Drew had to admit, he had been unsure about Enzo, at first. A drifter, an orphan. A man without a family. But Drew couldn't deny how he looked at Brynlee. And he couldn't deny how good he was with her. He adored the ground she walked on and would do anything for her. Including putting up with a crotchety old man like himself. As a son-in-law, Drew could have done far worse.

"Ach, lad. Are ya done talkin' like a fool? That loo isn't gonna fix itself, ya know." Drew winked at Brynlee even as Enzo flashed a smug grin in his direction.

"I'm on it."

He was definitely handy around the house. He had a way with his hands that Drew had never quite been able to cultivate.

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Drew rubbed absently at his bad hip. Then he headed inside. He should rest, before his daughter told him to. It had to be that stubborn streak that always put his back up when she told him to go lay down. Or maybe it was pride. Then again, what was a man without his pride? He closed his eyes and drifted off thinking about pride.

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Drew wasn't the only one that needed naps. As time went on and she became more and more heavily pregnant, Brynlee found that napping was the only way she could make it through the day.

"There's no shame in it, ya know," Enzo told her for the probably the thousandth time.

"No, I suppose not. I just wish I could see my feet again. I feel as big as a house!" Brynlee complained.

Enzo laughed. "Oh hush now." He brushed the backs of his fingers over her cheek.

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"You're beautiful and it's almost time. The time will come and you'll say no, not ready!" He kissed her cheek.

She laughed. "You're probably right."



He was right indeed. Brynlee was woken from one of her naps by a sharp pain. When she realized that it wasn't simply pregnancy pains, she cried out, "No! I'm not ready!"

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But life waits for no one. Ready or not, Jace Aaron Hansome was born with a sharp wail to announce his presence.

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Enzo, upon hearing the cry, came back inside. Both he and Drew had waited outside, in a panic. But now, he saw the little figure in the bassinet and he went immediately to his wife and pulled her into his arms to kiss her soundly. Then he gently began to message her shoulders, wanting nothing more than to pamper her.

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As a family, the three adults looked down into the bassinet at the tiny life there. He yawned gently and was already asleep.

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Brynlee leaned against Enzo, sighing softly, her heart near to bursting. Enzo wrapped his arms around her, resting his chin on the top of her head. Drew put a hand on Enzo's arm and kissed his daughter's cheek. "He's a beauty, my girl."

"Yes he is," she agreed. "He truly is."



While work never ended on the farm, little Jace was very much the center of attention. It was also a great way to keep his grandfather out of too much trouble. Drew was quite taken with the dear boy.

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The three adults often took turns with him. While his mama was out doing the wash or taking care of the plants, Enzo or Drew would take care of Jace.

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But always at night, it was mama's time with him. Brynlee couldn't help but smiling at him as she lifted him up after a diaper change. The sweet smell of his soft skin as she nuzzled her cheek against his. "That's mama's boy," she whispered. "Mama loves her little boy."

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After feeding him, she'd kiss his little forehead and then lay him back down, watching him sleep for a few moments before going to join her husband in bed. She'd fall asleep in her husband's arms, more content than she could ever remember being. Even the fear of the changing seasons couldn't touch her now.

 

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